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2021-10-22 01:24:08| Engadget

The redesigned MacBook Pro might be more powerful than you think, provided you have the right configuration. Apple has confirmed to Engadget and MacRumors that the 16-inch MacBook Pro with an M1 Max chip can invoke a previously hinted-at "High Power Mode." While the company was shy on details, macOS Monterey beta code suggested the mode would "optimize performance" for demanding tasks in return for the possibility of more fan noise.This could be frustrating if you buy either the 14-inch MacBook Pro or a 16-inch system with the M1 Pro. This isn't surprising, though. Features like this by their nature drive up power consumption and heat, and Apple may want to make sure there's enough battery and thermal headroom (that is, a larger enclosure). The M1 Max is also a better fit for a mode like this than the M1 Pro there's simply more performance to unlock.If you do buy a higher-end MacBook Pro, though, this could be particularly helpful. Many pro users have moments when they need performance at all costs, such as a hurried video export or last-minute code compile. High Power Mode might help finish those tasks on time while putting a ceiling on noise in most situations.

Category: Marketing and Advertising


2021-10-22 00:34:59| Engadget

Less than a year after it first started testing live audio rooms, Twitter is opening up Spaces to nearly everyone. Starting today, anyone on Android and iOS can host a Space, no matter how many people follow them. As of this past May, the feature was open to any Twitter user with more than 600 followers. At the time, the company said it put that limit in place to ensure a good experience. Now that the option is available to all Android and iOS users, you can start your own audio room by tapping on the compose button and then the Spaces icon.One more mic check...the option to host a Space is now rolling out to everyone on Android and iOS!New to Spaces? Heres a thread to help you out (1/7) Twitter Support (@TwitterSupport) October 21, 2021If theres a reason Twitter waited almost a year to make hosting Spaces available to everyone, its because the company has spent the last few months adding features that enhance the experience significantly. Twitter recently added a topics tool that allows you to add pre-defined tags to make your audio room easier to find. It also recently added a co-hosting feature you can use to recruit people to help you with moderation. Those are all things that should make Spaces more appealing to first-time users.

Category: Marketing and Advertising


2021-10-22 00:19:24| Engadget

Snap is finally seeing the effects of Apples iOS 14 privacy changes on its ad business and the changes have had a bigger impact than it expected.The company reported revenue of just over $1 billion for the third-quarter of 2021. But despite that being a new milestone for Snap, it was $3 million shy of what the company had previously estimated. Snap executives said Apples iOS changes that make it more difficult for advertisers to track users were largely to blame for the shortfall.Our advertising business was disrupted by changes to iOS ad tracking that were broadly rolled out by Apple in June and July, CEO Evan Spiegel said during a call with analysts. While we anticipated some degree of business disruption, the new Apple provided measurement solution did not scale as we had expected, making it more difficult for our advertising partners to measure and manage their ad campaigns for iOS.It wasnt all bad news for Snap, though. The company once again beat expectations on user growth, adding 13 million new daily active users for the second quarter in a row. Snap now has 306 million DAUs, a new high for the company.Still, Spiegel called it a frustrating setback for the company, but added that increased privacy protections are really important for the long term health of the ecosystem and something we fully support.The iOS 14.5 update forced developers to ask users to explicitly agree to sharing their device identifier (known as IDFA), which is used by advertisers to track users across apps and services. Though Apple previewed the changes more than a year ago, the update wasnt released until April. Since then, third-party analytics have estimated that a vanishingly small percentage of iOS users agreed to allow apps to track them.Snap isnt the only company that has warned about Apples iOS changes on its ad business. Facebook, which has been publicly slamming the changes for more than a year, saying the changes will have an outsize impact on developers and small businesses. But Facebook has also warned investors that the changes are likely to hurt its own ad revenue in 2021. The social network is reporting its third-quarter earnings Monday, when it will share just how significantly it's been affected. 

Category: Marketing and Advertising


2021-10-21 22:58:59| Engadget

Twitter said in April that it was undertaking a new effort to study algorithmic fairness on its platform and whether its algorithms contribute to unintentional harms. As part of that work, the company promised to study the political leanings of its content recommendations. Now, the company has published its initial findings. According to Twitters research team, the companys timeline algorithm amplifies content from the political right in six of the seven countries it studied.The research looked at two issues: whether the algorithmic timeline amplified political content from elected officials, and whether some political groups received a greater amount of amplification. The researchers used tweets from news outlets and elected officials in seven countries (Canada, France, Germany, Japan, Spain, the United Kingdom, and the United States) to conduct the analysis, which they said was the first of its kind for Twitter.Tweets about political content from elected officials, regardless of party or whether the party is in power, do see algorithmic amplification when compared to political content on the reverse chronological timeline, Twitters Rumman Chowdhury wrote about the research. In 6 out of 7 countries, Tweets posted by political right elected officials are algorithmically amplified more than the political left. Right-leaning news outlets (defined by 3rd parties), see greater amplification compared to left-leaning.Heres whats complex: The team did phenomenal work identifying *what* is happening. Establishing *why* these observed patterns occur is a significantly more difficult question to answer and something META will examine. 5/n Rumman Chowdhury (@ruchowdh) October 21, 2021Crucially, as Chowdhury points out to Protocol, its not yet clear why this is happening. In the paper, the researchers posit that the difference in amplification could be a result of political parties pursuing different strategies on Twitter. But the team said that more research would be needed to fully understand the cause.While the findings are likely to raise some eyebrows, Chowdhury also notes that algorithmic amplification is not problematic by default. The researchers further point out that their findings does not support the hypothesis that algorithmic personalization amplifies extreme ideologies more than mainstream political voices.But at the very least, the research would seem to further debunk the notion that Twitter is biased against conservatives. The research also offers an intriguing look at how a tech platform can study the unintentional effects of its algorithms. Facebook, which has come under pressure to make more of its own research public, has defended its algorithms even as a whistleblower has suggested the company should move back to a chronological timeline.Twitters research is part of a broader effort by Twitter to uncover bias and other issues in its algorithms. The company has also published research about its image cropping algorithm and started a bug bounty program to find bias in its platform.

Category: Marketing and Advertising


2021-10-21 22:40:05| Engadget

American tech heavyweights are facing yet more scrutiny of their payment practices. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has ordered Amazon, Apple, Facebook, Google, PayPal and Square to hand over info concerning their payment system plans. The bureau wants to learn how these companies harvest data and control access to spot any anti-consumer behavior and provide "adequate" protections to the public.The CFPB will also study Chinese tech firms' payment systems, including Alipay and WeChat Pay.Director Rohit Chopra justified the order by warning that payments can pose a threat to the fair market thanks to their "tremendous scale and market power." He pointed to China as an example, noting that systems like Alipay and WeChat Pay are so thoroughly integrated with Chinese society that residents are effectively forced to use them as-is.The bureau said it was following up on Federal Trade Commission oversight of Big Tech. The regulator has studied some of the companies' behavior in detail and, in the faces of Facebook and Google, put them under close watch. In 2020, for instance, the FTC investigated Facebook and Google acquisitions that hadn't been reported.There's no certainty the CFPB orders will lead to regulatory action. However, they come right as politicians are trying to rein in Apple, Google and others for allegedly abusing app store payments. The Biden administration as a whole is also determined to crack down on tech companies. There's a chance CFPB will take corrective measures, even as those companies lower fees and otherwise try to make peace offerings.

Category: Marketing and Advertising


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