Netflix lost US subscribers in Q2 over price hikes; how can it win them back?

Netflix lost US subscribers in Q2 over price hikes; how can it win them back?

Enlarge / Netflix CEO Reed Hastings. (credit: re:publica)

If you’ve been grumbling about the rising cost of your Netflix account, it seems you’re not alone. Netflix shared its second-quarter financial results and the company indicated that higher prices may have led to dips in the platform’s subscriber counts.

Revenue for the video streaming service totaled $4.92 billion in the second quarter, up 26% year-over-year. Net income was $271 million, with $0.60 earnings per share. Both those figures were down from Q2 in 2018 and from Q1 of 2019.

Netflix added 2.7 million paid members during the period, a big cut from the 5 million it expected to see and from the 5.5 million recorded in the year-ago quarter. “Our missed forecast was across all regions, but slightly more so in regions with price increases,” the shareholder letter read. The company insisted that competition from other platforms was

Read the rest Continue Reading
Blizzard’s bad-news year continues with another co-founder’s departure

Blizzard’s bad-news year continues with another co-founder’s departure

Enlarge (credit: Blizzard Entertainment)

Frank Pearce, one of Blizzard Entertainment’s three original founding staffers, announced his intention to leave the game-making company on Friday, effective immediately.

Pearce’s announcement came via a Friday blog post at Blizzard’s official site, which was appended with a note from current Blizzard president J. Allen Brack. The combined blog post indicates that last year, Pearce “stepped into an advisory role to help with the transition,” which seems to indicate that his departure has been some time coming. It’s unclear whether this advisory-transition period began anywhere near the time another Blizzard co-founder, Mike Morhaime, left the company in October 2018.

The departure of Pearce as chief development officer leaves only one of Blizzard Entertainment’s original co-founders, Allen Adham, at the helm. Adham returned to Blizzard in 2016 after a ten-year game-development hiatus to become the company’s senior vice president. Adham, Pearce, and Morhaime founded the

Read the rest Continue Reading
Verizon wants you to pay $650 plus $85 a month for a 5G hotspot

Verizon wants you to pay $650 plus $85 a month for a 5G hotspot

Enlarge / A Verizon booth at Mobile World Congress Americas in Los Angeles in September 2018. (credit: Verizon)

Verizon’s 5G mobile service is available in just a handful of cities, but the carrier is charging premium prices to the few people who live in range of the network.

Verizon yesterday announced its first 5G hotspot, namely the Inseego MiFi M1000 that Verizon is selling for $650. On top of the device cost, the monthly fees for 5G service will be higher than 4G even though Verizon’s 5G network barely exists.

Verizon said hotspot-only plans “start at $85 a month (plus taxes and fees).” Verizon describes the $85-per-month hotspot plan as “unlimited” when you go through the online checkout process. But the fine print states that customers get 50GB of high-speed 5G data, and 5G speeds are reduced to 3Mbps after that. The plan treats 5G and 4G data separately;

Read the rest Continue Reading
President Trump says NASA should “listen to the other side” of exploration

President Trump says NASA should “listen to the other side” of exploration

Enlarge / President Trump, with Apollo 11 Command Module Pilot at far left, listens to Apollo 11 Lunar Module Pilot Buzz Aldrin on Friday in the Oval Office. (credit: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

On Friday, a day before the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 Moon landing, President Trump invited the crew of that mission to the Oval Office. Seated, Trump was flanked by Lunar Module Pilot Buzz Aldrin, Command Module Pilot Michael Collins, and the children of Commander Neil Armstrong.

During the 20-minute ceremony, Trump praised the efforts of the Apollo 11 crew and NASA in achieving the first Moon landing half a century ago. But pretty quickly, he pivoted to his own administration’s plans for sending humans to the Moon—and eventually Mars. The administration’s Artemis Program, which calls for humans to return to the Moon by 2024, has been heavily promoted by the space agency as of late.

Read the rest Continue Reading
New York passes its Green New Deal, announces massive offshore wind push

New York passes its Green New Deal, announces massive offshore wind push

Enlarge / Sights like this may become common on Long Island. (credit: University of Rhode Island)

Yesterday, New York governor Andrew Cuomo signed a bill that’s been described as the state’s Green New Deal. Unlike the one that’s been floated in Congress, this one isn’t a grab-bag collection of social and energy programs. Instead, there’s a strong focus on energy, with assurances that changes will be made in a way that benefits underprivileged communities.

The bill was passed by both houses of the New York legislature last month, but Cuomo held off on signing it so that he could pair it with an announcement that suggests the new plan’s goals are realistic. The state has now signed contracts for two wind farms that will have a combined capacity of 1.7 GW. If they open as planned in under five years, they will turn New York into the US’ leading

Read the rest Continue Reading
How private is your browser’s Private mode? Research into porn suggests “not very”

How private is your browser’s Private mode? Research into porn suggests “not very”

Thought using Incognito mode might keep such searching private? Facebook, Google, and even Oracle have more of your Web usage in their sights than you might think.

A forthcoming research paper [PDF] from researchers at Microsoft, Carnegie Mellon, and the University of Pennsylvania brings up the possibility that Google and Facebook might be tracking your porn history—and, perhaps more worrisome, that using Incognito mode doesn’t help.

The paper, set to be published in the journal New Media & Society, does an excellent job of backing up the claim that porn usage ends up being tracked by Google and Facebook. Authors Elena Maris, Timothy Libert, and Jennifer Henrichsen used open source tool webxray to analyze more than 22,000 porn sites, discovering tracking code for Google on 74% and for Facebook on 10% of the sites analyzed. Software giant Oracle’s Web tracking code also showed up, appearing on 24% of those

Read the rest Continue Reading
DEAL: Pixel 3 and 3 XL Down $200 on Google Store, Starting at $599

DEAL: Unlocked Pixel 3 or 3 XL for $260 Off ($539+), $360 Off if You Activate at Purchase ($439+)


Best Buy has a solid deal on unlocked Pixel 3 models right now, saving you up to $360 if you choose to activate the device at time of purchase. At $360 off, the Pixel 3 is all the way down to $439 and the Pixel 3 XL comes down to $539.

However, if you’d rather not activate and just want the phone all by itself with no service, you can still get $260 off both models of the Pixel 3. At $260 off, the Pixel 3 costs as little as $539 and the 3 XL costs $639.

Whether you choose to activate or not, $260 off to begin with is not bad at all.

Have at it.

Best Buy Link

Source link Read the rest

Continue Reading
Report: Galaxy Fold Ready for Launch Following Latest Durability Tests

Report: Galaxy Fold Ready for Launch Following Latest Durability Tests


According to the latest intel out of South Korea, the Galaxy Fold has “aced” its latest durability tests and is now ready for launch.

The tests were administered by a group of industry professionals and professors at Seoul National University and KAIST. Stated by the report’s source, “A couple weeks ago, Samsung Electronics sent out the Galaxy Fold to this group and word is that the phone aced the tests and is ready for launch.”

This sounds promising, but it’s basically what we’ve been hearing for the past few weeks. In fact, exactly one month ago is when Samsung said all of the Galaxy Fold issues were “ironed out” and that the phone was ready. In this case, though, it’s probably better to be safe than sorry.

I still haven’t held this device, but if and when it does make its way to the market, I’ll be interested in using … Read the rest

Continue Reading
Chrome 76 prevents NYT and other news sites from detecting Incognito Mode

Chrome 76 prevents NYT and other news sites from detecting Incognito Mode

Enlarge / The Boston Globe and some other news sites prevent non-subscribers from viewing articles in a browser’s private mode. (credit: Boston Globe)

Google Chrome 76 will close a loophole that websites use to detect when people use the browser’s Incognito Mode.

Over the past couple of years, you may have noticed some websites preventing you from reading articles while using a browser’s private mode. The Boston Globe began doing this in 2017, requiring people to log in to paid subscriber accounts in order to read in private mode. The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, and other newspapers impose identical restrictions.

Chrome 76—which is in beta now and is scheduled to hit the stable channel on July 30—prevents these websites from discovering that you’re in private mode. Google explained the change yesterday in a blog post titled, “Protecting private browsing in Chrome.”

Read 9 remaining Read the rest

Continue Reading
The Greatest Leap, part 4: Catching Apollo fever as a new NASA employee

The Greatest Leap, part 4: Catching Apollo fever as a new NASA employee

Video shot by Joshua Ballinger, edited and produced by Jing Niu and David Minick. Click here for transcript.

As inevitably happens in August, a sweltering heat with the tactility of dog’s breath had come over Houston when Raja Chari reported to the Johnson Space Center. Just shy of his 40th birthday, the decorated combat veteran and test pilot had been born too late to see humans walking on the Moon. No matter, he was in awe of the new office.

Read the rest Continue Reading