Facebook for Android will soon begin playing video sound in News Feed by default

Along with a slew of other new features announced yesterday, Facebook says that videos in News Feed will soon play audio by default. The company also announced improvements to vertical videos, a new picture-in-picture mode for watching videos while scrolling, and a Facebook video app for TV.

more…

Should Google add a news feed to its homepage? [Poll]

Since its inception, Google’s homepage has not changed much. On it, you will see the company’s logo and the search bar. Besides some links around the borders, Google.com is pretty sparse. Then, after Google unveiled a revamp of Feed, rumors started floating around that it would one day be added to the search giant’s homepage.

Do you think Google should place a news feed or something else on its homepage?

more…

European Commission pressing ahead on ‘Google News tax’ despite nobody wanting it

TNW reports that the European Commission is pressing ahead with proposals to make Google News pay a fee for linking to news stories on the web. The EC says that as search results include a short excerpt from the piece, and that text is protected by copyright, Google must pay.

Three European countries have tried this, and it failed in all three. In Spain, Google simply decided to close Google News in that country, and news websites lost 10-15% of their traffic overnight. Spanish publishers – who had originally demanded the law – quickly realized their mistake and tried to pass a new law that would somehow force Google to return …

more…

Comment: Aircraft fire in ‘safe’ Galaxy Note 7 bad news for Samsung, but the jury is still out

When a series of fires and explosions forced Samsung to recall almost 2.5 million units of its Galaxy Note 7 models at an estimated cost of a billion dollars, the last thing in the world it wanted was to have one of its new ‘safe’ replacement handsets catch fire. But that’s exactly what happened yesterday, and in the worst possible circumstances: on board an airliner.

The only saving grace for Samsung was that the aircraft was still at the gate. Had it been in flight at the time, things could obviously have been very much worse.

However, while the news is grim, we do need to be a little careful about jumping to conclusions …

more…

Uber’s latest test offers good news & bad: fixed fares, but surge pricing less visible

The Verge reports that Uber is testing a new version of its app that offers customers good news and bad. On the plus side, it will specify a fixed fare up-front, so you know exactly what you’ll be paying. On the downside, it will be much less obvious when surge-pricing is in effect …

more…