How high refresh and frame rates will change phone screens and cameras

Though 2020 will be remembered for many things, one of the year’s noteworthy smartphone device trends — broad availability of “120Hz” screens — could slip under the mainstream radar, mostly because average consumers have no idea what Hz (“Hertz”) means. Displays targeted at gamers and creative professionals adopted 120Hz technology several years ago, sometimes referring to “120Hz refresh rates,” and in 2020, even budget smartphones will include “120Hz display support.”

What that means is that smartphone users at $300-$400 price points are about to have access to the imperceptibly fast display technologies that were once restricted to high-end computers and tablets, right at the same time higher frame rate cameras are becoming increasingly popular on phones. Today, I’m going to simplify this complex topic, and explain why it actually matters when a screen moves from 30Hz to 60Hz or 120Hz refresh rates — as well as when it’s overkill. Read More


There’s a Twitter campaign to get Trump out of office using your spare change

Xander Schultz, a 34-year-old self-described social justice entrepreneur, is launching a campaign on Friday, #DefeatbyTweet, designed to boot Donald Trump out of office.

You can join in, too. All you need is some spare change. Every time Trump tweets, your money goes toward the Justice Fund — a group of Black-led grassroots political organizations working in swing states to get people to vote. Trump will be notified via Twitter with the receipts. You can sign up here to pledge any amount of money you want to donate per tweet.  Read More

The Next Web

From Stonewall 1969 to Black Lives Matter 2020: How technology ignites change

US Customs and Border Patrol agents flew unmanned aerial vehicles over crowds of Black Lives Matter protesters in at least 15 cities in June. According to government officials, the feds were just keeping an eye on the situation.

Despite the fact these were Predator drones – the same kind the US used to assassinate a foreign general earlier this year – the mission was strictly surveillance. The drones were reportedly unarmed.

Officials say the drones carried no onboard facial recognition software, but nearly 300 hours of film was streamed to ICE agents and other CBP personnel during the operation. Despite it being unconstitutional to film protesters, there’s nothing to stop the government from running this footage through facial recognition software now or in the future. This is normal. You might even say it’s routine. Read More


A look at tech salaries and how they could change as more employees go remote – TechCrunch

Each year, the hiring platform Hired produces a look at tech salaries based on the data it says it gleans from hundreds of thousands of interview requests and job offers. This year, as in past years, it looked at salaries around the globe for software engineers, product managers, DevOps engineers, designers, and data scientists.

Of course, this year is a very funky year, one that, owing to the pandemic, looks to see an accelerated shift toward more remote work. So this year, Hired split its findings its two parts — pre COVID-19 and post. It published data about who was being paid what in 2019, but also how those numbers might change going forward, particularly if more companies adopt localized compensation as Facebook has said it will do with its own employees. Read More

Tech Radar

iOS 14 will finally allow users to change their default email and web browser apps

Apple has finally caved in and with the release of iOS 14, iPhone users will finally be able to change their default web browser and email apps.

For some time now, iOS users have wanted to change their default web browser from Safari and their default email app from Apple’s Mail app. Google’s mobile operating system Android already allows users to do this and with the release of iOS 14 this fall, Apple users will finally be able to do so as well.

Currently when you click on a link in an app, it will always open in Safari by default. You can open links in other browsers such as Google Chrome but doing so is not as easy as a simple press. The same is true with Apple’s Mail app when you tap on an email address on a webpage. Read More


How ‘Sustainable’ Web Design Can Help Fight Climate Change

Danny van Kooten is a Dutch programmer who decided to reduce his carbon output by no longer eating beef or flying. Then, five months ago, he made a change that had an even bigger impact—and it took only a few keystrokes.

Van Kooten is the author of a popular WordPress plug-in that helps website owners use the mailing-list service Mailchimp. Install van Kooten’s plug-in and visitors can sign up for your Mailchimp list directly via a form embedded on your site. His plug-in also makes the site slightly larger by adding several thousand more lines of code. Every time someone visits your page, a server has to send part of van Kooten’s code to their browser. Sending data to a browser uses energy; the less code you send, the less energy you use. Read More

The Next Web

There’s no native iPad Calculator app, and that won’t change in iPadOS 14

What do the iPhone, Apple Watch, and MacBook range have in common? That’s right! They all have an inbuilt calculator app! And… do you want to know a secret? A mystery, even? There is no native iPad Calculator app.

No word of a lie.

Do you have an iPad? If so, now’s the time to go and try and find the Calculator app. Keep on looking. Go on, try searching for it. Haven’t found it yet? Strange. Could it be there’s… no native iPad Calculator app?

And it doesn’t look like this is going to change with iPadOS 14. Read More

The Next Web

Outer space is a sausage fest — but that’s set to change

Only 566 people have ever travelled to space. Sixty-five of them, or about 11.5%, were women.

NASA recently proclaimed it will put the “first woman and next man” on the Moon by 2024. Despite nearly 60 years of human spaceflight, women are still in the territory of “firsts”.

Valentina Tereshkova, the first woman in space

The first woman in space was cosmonaut Valentina Vladimirovna Tereshkova, who orbited Earth 48 times from June 16 to 18, 1963.

Her flight became Cold War propaganda to demonstrate the superiority of communism. At the 1963 World Congress of Women, Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev used Tereshkova’s voyage to declare the USSR had achieved equality for women. Read More


App Store outrage, WWDC20 prep, Android subscriptions change – TechCrunch

Welcome back to This Week in Apps, the Extra Crunch series that recaps the latest OS news, the applications they support and the money that flows through it all.

The app industry is as hot as ever, with a record 204 billion downloads and $120 billion in consumer spending in 2019. People are now spending three hours and 40 minutes per day using apps, rivaling TV. Apps aren’t just a way to pass idle hours — they’re a big business. In 2019, mobile-first companies had a combined $544 billion valuation, 6.5x higher than those without a mobile focus. Read More

The Next Web

Apple says it won’t change App Store rules for Hey — or anyone else

After this week’s events, Apple’s App Store is one of the most controversial products in tech. However, the company’s vice president, Phil Schiller, said that it’s not changing the rules for anyone.

Let’s back up for a bit and take a look at what happened. First, the European Union opened an anti-trust investigation into App Store rules, after music streaming service Spotify and Rakutan-owned ebook distributor Kobo filed complaints about competition in music streaming and e-books.

Then, amid the much-hyped launch of Basecamp’s new email service Hey, Apple rejected updates to its iOS app because it didn’t include the official in-app purchase mechanism, which allows Apple to take a cut. Read More