Yerevan, 20.January.2018,
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Technology

Instagram users top 500 million
There are now half a billion active users on the photo-sharing app Instagram, the company has said. More than 300 million people use it at least once a day, it added. The service was bought by Facebook in 2012 for about $1bn (£677m), and has grown rapidly ever since. According to the company, an average of 95 million photos and videos are posted each day. Co-founder Kevin Systrom told the BBC its success was the result of "a lot of hard work". In its five and a half years, Instagram ha...
Social media 'outstrips TV' as news source for young people
Social media has overtaken television as young people's main source of news, according to a report. Of the 18-to-24-year-olds surveyed, 28% cited social media as their main news source, compared with 24% for TV. The Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism research also suggests 51% of people with online access use social media as a news source. This trend and the rising use of mobile phones to access news are undermining traditional business models.
E3: PlayStation VR has Star Wars and Resident Evil VII
Sony has unveiled a raft of new games that will be playable in virtual reality on the PS4. New Star Wars and Resident Evil games were among those revealed at the E3 video games trade show in Los Angeles. Virtual reality debuts for Batman, Final Fantasy and Call of Duty were also shown off. The titles will require gamers to use the PlayStation VR headset, which will cost $399 (£280) when it is released on October 13. "It's not for the faint of heart in terms of the type of game experien...
Lenovo phones get Tango augmented reality and snap-on modules
Lenovo has announced two unusual smartphones - a model that uses special cameras to scan its surroundings and a handset with optional snap-on parts. The Phab2Pro's sensors allow it to make sense of objects and close-by spaces, allowing graphics to be intelligently added to real-world views. The Moto Z uses magnets to add optional hardware modules to the phone's rear including a speaker and a projector. Analysts said the innovations might prove a tough sell. That would complicate Lenovo's eff...
Apple to lower App Store 'tax' for loyal subscribers
If you sell an app, subscription or other product through the App Store, Apple gets 30% of the money. That's how its been since the App Store's inception seven years ago. But soon Apple will for the first time lower its App Store commission on one condition: if an app can retain a subscriber for over a year, the revenue split will be 85/15. The change will apply immediately to existing apps with users that are more than a year old - potentially providing an injection of extra revenue for many...
Taiwan's Asus unveils 'budget' household robot
Taiwan's Asus has unveiled what it says is the first "affordable" household robot. Voice-activated Zenbo will cost $599 (£409) and Asus says it will be able to control smart home devices. The firm said it would be less expensive than competing household robots because it did not have humanoid features such as arms. But the BBC's Taipei correspondent Cindy Sui said Zenbo could only perform a limited selection of tasks when she was given a demonstration.
Xiaomi Mi Drone poses price challenge to DJI
Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi has announced its first drone, pricing it significantly lower than a comparable model by the market leader DJI. The Mi Drone can stay airborne for nearly half an hour and will be sold with a choice of stabilised cameras. The move gives Xiaomi the chance to target a fast-growing market, at a time when it has failed to meet its own sales targets. One expert said the firm now had to win over potential buyers' trust. "The feature set between the Mi Drone and DJI's...
Netflix and Amazon face quota on EU-made content
On-demand video streaming services face a call that at least 20% of the catalogues they offer to EU subscribers should be made locally. The European Commission has also proposed that the programming must be given "good visibility". The move would affect US-based services including Netflix and Amazon Prime Video. However, one expert suggested the new rules might not have as much impact as intended. The call is part of a proposed update to the 28-nation bloc's Audiovisual Media Services direct...
India launches mini space shuttle
India has launched an unmanned model space shuttle, joining the race to develop reusable spacecraft. The 7m scale model took off from Andhra Pradesh and was expected to fly about 70km (43 miles) into the atmosphere before coming down at sea. Since Nasa stopped its Space Shuttle programme in 2011, there has been strong international competition to design alternative reusable spacecraft. Such vehicles significantly cut the cost of space exploration. India has been putting substantial...
Magnetic Hyperloop pod unveiled at MIT
A people-carrying pod designed to levitate and travel at extremely high speeds has been unveiled in Boston. A 30-strong team from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) is one of several groups and companies working on making the Hyperloop concept a reality. The idea, first envisioned by Tesla founder Elon Musk, is to create a transport system that propels pods through airtight tubes. The MIT team said its pod design paved the way for "a mode transportation that could change how we t...
Second bank cyber-attack detected by Swift after Bangladesh raid
A cyber-attack, similar to one that saw $81m (£56m) stolen from Bangladesh's central bank, has hit a second bank. The warning about the second attack came from Swift, which oversees the financial messaging network that underpins global money transfers. Swift said the target was a commercial bank but did not name the organisation or reveal if any cash had been taken. The attack used techniques and tools resembling those used to steal cash from Bangladesh in February, it said. Swift is u...
Facebook: Political bias claim 'untrue'
Facebook has defended itself over claims its Trending Topics intentionally suppressed stories supporting conservative political viewpoints. A report by technology news site Gizmodo said staff responsible for what was shown to Facebook's 1.6bn users frequently chose to bury articles they did not agree with. Responding to the allegations, the network's head of search Tom Stocky wrotethat the site "found no evidence that the anonymous allegations are true". The claims come weeks a...
App to store old family photos launched
A smartphone app that allows people to upload, store and share their old photographs has been launched by two British entrepreneurs. The founders hope that the Clixta app can act both as a place where families or other groups can share old photos privately and as a public archive for British social history. They are working with foundation the Copyright Hub to ensure that each photograph has a digital identifier. The app will be free initially. The idea was formed when Dean Newsome and Shaun...
Instagram hacked by 10-year-old boy
A 10-year-old Finnish boy named Jani has been given $10,000 (£7,000) after he found a security flaw in image-sharing social network Instagram. The boy, who technically is not allowed to even join the site for another three years, discovered a bug that allowed him to delete comments made by other users. The issue was "quickly" fixed after being discovered, said Facebook, which owns Instagram. Jani was paid soon after - making him the youngest ever recipient of the firm's "bug bounty" pri...
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