The Moto C Plus works with a 2-megapixel front-facing camera with a “selfie light” as well as an 8-megapixel camera around the back. The front-facing camera on the standard Moto C is also 2-megapixels large and has a front-facing “selfie flash” to match that of the Moto C Plus. All the frontside flashing your heart could ever hope to desire.The Moto C and Moto C Plus will be available in a variety of countries inside Latin America, Europe, and Asia Pacific. These devices will be available in 3G and 4G editions. The Moto C 3G will start at €89 with 1GB RAM/8GB storage while the 4G Moto C will start at €99 with 1GB RAM/8GB storage. The Moto C Plus will start at €119 with 1GB RAM/16GB. So they DID start at under 100, but just barely. Story TimelineMoto G5 Plus and Moto G5 pack more for your budgetAmazon Prime Exclusive Phones adds Alcatel A30 and Moto G5 PlusMoto G5 Plus First Look: What no other phone has (at this price)Moto G5 Plus Review : Mid-tier Phone AuthorityMoto G5 Plus VS OnePlus 3T: battle for the best budget phone Moto C features a 5-inch display with 720p resolution. It’s not the best display in the world, but with out blasting one’s eyes out with brightness, it’ll last quite a while on a single battery charge. This smartphone has a 2350 mAh battery inside and internal storage of either 8 or 16GB.The Moto C Plus works with a slightly larger display and a few other slightly-enlarged features. This phone has a 4000 mAh battery which Motorola suggests will last up to 30 hours on one full charge. This smartphone will also come with 2x SIM card slots, one of which can also be used as a microSD card slot for additional media storage. This week the folks at Motorola have revealed a couple of new smartphones: Moto C and Moto C Plus. The key word for both of these phones is “affordable” – so says Motorola – with both phones coming with “essentials” only. Motorola also continues their “just because it’s cheap doesn’t mean it can’t be colorful” push with this generation of inexpensive smartphone, with the Moto C coming in Metallic Cherry, Pearl White, Fine Gold or Starry Black.
Many would agree that Facebook‘s mobile apps, in addition to the social network as a whole, is a bit bloated with useless, unnecessary features. Fortunately the newest one will definitely be handy when in a pinch. Called “Find Wifi,” the feature lets users search for nearby businesses and locations that offer free WiFi for public use. Facebook announced this week that Find WiFi is coming to both its iOS and Android apps for users all around the globe. This comes after a test period last fall in a select number of countries.The feature can be found under the “More” tab in the main Facebook app. After tapping on it, users will see the names and locations of nearby places with WiFi service, along with details like their business hours, what kind of place it is (restaurant, library, etc.), and the name of their network. There’s one catch, however: these businesses have to state on their Facebook Page that they offer free WiFi. Facebook says it sees the feature being most useful in areas with poor cellular connection, and for travelers. Of course, it also offers a bit of peace of mind for users, as places offering WiFi are more likely to have a secure network, which is better than connecting to a questionable network from a random stranger in public.SOURCE Facebook Story TimelineFacebook marks GIF’s 30th birthday with comments GIFs, new GIFsFacebook announces a new video creation appFacebook Messenger features want you to do more than just chatFacebook breaks its own record, changes incomingTweaked Facebook Aquila drone aces latest test flight after crash lessonsFacebook declares war on spammy link sharers
Following news that Facebook is testing Stories on its desktop product, Instagram has taken the plunge and launched its own Stories feature for desktop users, removing its mobile limitation. In addition, Instagram will soon allow its users to upload content to their accounts using mobile web instead of the app, though desktop users won’t get that ability. Instagram Stories encompass the user content found by tapping their round profile bubble located at the top of the Instagram app. This bubble appears when the user is sharing content in their day’s story, allowing users to swipe back and forth through it. This content doesn’t appear in the feed, eliminating the concern about over-posting while making it possible to share a lot more on the platform.Until now, you had to be using the mobile app to access these stories, but Instagram has changed that. Starting today and rolling out to users around the world, Instagram is introducing Stories on its desktop website; you can now use your computer’s browser and cursor to click your way through someone’s story.In addition, Instagram recently confirmed to The Verge that it plans to roll out mobile web uploading for mobile users, meaning they can use their tablet or phone’s browser to upload videos and pictures instead of the app. This feature won’t be arriving for a few months, though, and it won’t be available for desktop users.
The Active Edge settings in the Google Pixel 2 include several toggles. There’s a toggle for Squeeze for Assistant – “to talk to your Assistant, quickly squeeze the bottom half of your phone, then release.” Another toggle switches squeeze functionality on/off while the device’s display is off. Another toggle in Active Edge settings on the Pixel 2 is “Squeeze for Silence.” This toggle switches on the Active Edge ability to silence incoming calls. There’s also a row of 9 dots that allow the user to adjust squeeze sensitivity, from Light squeeze to Firm squeeze.At the moment, that’s it for settings. There isn’t a whole lot this device is willing to allow its edge squeeze ability to do. There were at least a couple of reasons why the Galaxy S8’s Bixby Button wasn’t very well received at first. All the way back in late August, our own Brittany Roston wrote about how the Bixby button was the bane of her existence. The button is in a place that’s very easy to press accidentally – that’s one big reason why it wasn’t given a total thumbs up.SEE TOO: Google made a huge mistake with Pixel 2The Bixby Button was not at first capable of being turned off. It was on and active at all times, connected to Bixby. That issue is resolved at the start with the Pixel 2’s Active Edge – the squeeze doesn’t need to do anything, if you’re not a fan. The other issue with the Galaxy S8’s button was that not every person wanted to use Bixby – that too is solved by Google’s off-toggle.Samsung’s most recent move was to allow the off-toggle – but they didn’t in turn allow the button to map to other button-friendly functions. In this way, Samsung’s essentially said “use Bixby or you get a button that does nothing.” Just as the Samsung Galaxy S8 was roasted for its Bixby button, so too must we address the squeeze feature on Google’s Pixel 2. The hardware comes from the HTC U11, the first place where HTC implemented “Edge Sense” with open-ended functionality. While the edge squeeze feature on the Pixel 2 remains a shortcut, it’s currently restricted to Google Assistant – and no other connections are enabled. Story TimelineGoogle Pixel 2 can charge really fast, compensates for no wirelessPixel 2’s unlimited Google Photo Storage isn’t going to last foreverGoogle Pixel 2’s camera gets a making-of video of its ownGoogle: Pixel 2 ‘still comes with a headphone jack’ but…Google Pixel 2 can activate Do Not Disturb mode automatically when drivingGoogle Pixel 2 pop up stores destined for LA and NYC The positive part about Google’s HTC-made Active Edge is that users aren’t going to notice this feature at all when it’s turned off. The edge can still be squeezed, but it’s nothing like a button, just sitting there, staring at you, silently judging you for its deactivation.The smart thing to do for the massive community of Pixel-friendly developers would be to open the feature up to additional 3rd-party functionality. If Google wanted to do this, that’d be just super duper. But even if they don’t, at least I don’t have to feel that button’s tiny, terrible judging eyes, piercing my soul.
Story TimelineGalaxy S10 is about to make a huge mistakeGalaxy S10 leak ‘confirms’ loss of major legacy featureGalaxy S10 to bear one of Samsung’s new 48MP, 32MP camerasGalaxy S10 to ditch iris scanner for ultrasonic fingerprint sensor The three different versions of the Samsung Galaxy S10 will be somewhat like the most recent iPhone trio revealed by Apple. There’ll be the standard Galaxy S10, the momma bear, and there’ll be a Galaxy S10 Plus, the poppa bear. The baby bear of the three won’t necessarily just be called something like Galaxy S10 Mini – because we’re well and away beyond that sort of naming convention, aren’t we?The third Galaxy S10 unit will almost certainly have a side-mounted fingerprint reader as well as a flat display. The display on the other two units will be Infinity Display style, with curved edges. The more expensive two units are said to roll with in-display fingerprint scanners, too – and no IR-reading or face-scanning stuff like they’ve had in the past. Or at least no NEW face-scanning unlock features.The Galaxy S10 that’s cheapest will have a variety of color options from which to choose. Have a peek at the likely three options below for the sizes, and don’t be shocked to find the largest variety in color options on the cheapest of these:AdChoices广告1. 5.8-inch display, flat, side-mounted fingerprint reader, 4G modem: $750 USD2. 5.8-inch display, curved edges, in-display fingerprint reader, 5G modem, $1,000 USD3. 6.4-inch display, curved edges, in-display fingerprint reader, 5G modem, $1,100 USDLook like an option in that mix that you might choose? We’re expecting Samsung to make a big showing at their yearly event during Mobile World Congress 2019. That’ll almost certainly be on February 24th, 2019, and it’ll probably center solely on the Galaxy S10 – all three models, that is. We’re expecting that the Galaxy S10 in all three iterations will be available within a week and a half after that. There’s a whole lot of conjecture going on when it comes to the Samsung Galaxy S10, but today we’ve got something slightly more solid. Per several leaks over the past few weeks and a pair or tips we’ve seen today, we’ve got a better idea of what the three different Samsung Galaxy S10 units will look like, size-wise. These devices will appear as a sort of baby bear, momma bear, and papa bear trio, but more like the Bugs Bunny version where the baby bear isn’t necessarily just the smallest of the three.
2016 Audi A3 2.0T quattro Gallery Style-wise, you’d be forgiven for blaming perspective and mistaking the A3 for a distant A4. When it comes to design language, Audi is clearly of the “don’t change a good thing” school, since you hear the corporate tongue loud and clear.So, at the front you have a big trapezoidal grille and strikingly angular lights – in this case xenons with LED running lights – while the sides get sharp crease-lines and a relatively high waist. At the rear, the short overhangs work in the A3’s favor, pushing the body’s weight visually forward and leaving it looking more urgent and keen. Beyond that, the dashboard is a simple thing: a long horizontal swathe of black, soft-touch rubber studded with circular vents, together with a row of dedicated HVAC controls. It’d border on the oppressive if it wasn’t for higher overall quality and materials than the average compact sedan, though there can still be some unidentified squeaks from rubbing trim: this isn’t an A8, or even an A4.You don’t get the space of those cars, either. Up front that’s fine, with plenty of head and leg room, but the rear bench is conspicuously short on legroom. The A3’s trunk, too, is on the compact side – 12.3 cubic feet – leaving me longing for the hatchback body more common for European versions of the car. Under the hood is a familiar engine, not to mention a good one. Audi’s 2.0-liter, four-cylinder turbo is good here for 220 horsepower and 258 lb-ft. of torque – not the highest it’s been tuned, but certainly enough to give the A3 some real perkiness. The turbo spools up rapidly, enough for a surprising surge away from the lights, and overtaking at highway speeds isn’t a problem. It’s also frugal, too: Audi quotes 24 mpg in the city, 33 mpg on the highway, for 27 mpg combined; in my mixed driving, I clocked in at 27.3 mpg.While it might share an engine with the TT, unfortunately it doesn’t get the full benefit of switchable drive modes of the sports car. Audi’s Drive Select system is an $800 add-on – not present on my review car – that offers Dynamic, Comfort, Auto, and Individual settings: in Dynamic, the car in theory gets more eager, while in Comfort it’s more of a cruise. Without it, though you can flick the excellent six-speed S-tronic gearbox between regular “drive” and “sport” modes – the latter holding lower gears for longer, being more eager to downshift, and giving a crunchy little blip when that happens – you can’t adjust the other dynamics. Even if you cough up the $800, mind, you don’t get the full TT experience. The sports car has adaptive suspension which the A3 lacks (it’s an option on Audi’s S3), and in my experience that’s the biggest difference that Drive Select’s modes make. It’s something you miss when the roads get twisty. The A3 holds the road well, courtesy of Audi’s quattro all-wheel drive, but there’s more wallow as the tuned-for-comfort suspension tries to keep up with aggressive cornering. It’s good, but if you really want four doors, performance, the Audi rings, and a “3” on the trunk lid you should go for the S3. NOW READ: 2017 Audi A4 first-driveThat’s involves a step up to a $42,500 car, mind, though does get you 292 HP and 280 lb-ft. of torque. In comparison, this spec’d-out A3 starts to look more than a little expensive at $41,100 as-tested: after all, you’re getting into A4 territory at that point, with the larger car starting at $37,500. My inclination would be to stick as close as possible to the $34,200 entry-level A3 2.0 TFSI – which still gets you leather, a panoramic sunroof, dual-zone climate control, heated leather wheel, parking system with a rearview camera, Bluetooth and SiriusXM, and rain-sensitive wipers – and try to resist the urge to splash out on Audi’s options list. That way, you’re getting a mini-A4 and an entertaining drive for a solid price. The 2016 A3 2.0 TFSI may not turn heads in the parking lot, but its eager engine should keep a smile on your face if you simply must have that four-ring cachet. The $2,700 Premium Plus package throws in 18-inch allows instead of the 17-inch standard wheels, heated power front seats, keyless start, and an auto-dimming mirror. It’s handsome, in a sober way, with minimal applications of shiny chrome and bold lines that I dare say will prove more timeless than the ostentatious flourishes of some of its segment rivals. It also very obviously apes its bigger siblings which I suspect helps it appeal to those who’d love the keys to an A4 or A6, but can’t stomach the monthly lease payments. Audi’s dashboard design has always tended toward the minimalistic, but the A3 is positively spartan. Sadly you don’t get the vast LCD binnacle that Audi has dubbed its Virtual Cockpit, making do with relatively mundane analog dials and a smaller status panel instead, but there’s a second display that pops out of the top of the center console for media, navigation, and adjusting settings if you opt for the $2,700 Technology Package. That also gets you WiFi hotspot support for the baked-in LTE modem, Audi side-assist for safer lane-changing, and navigation. It’s controlled via Audi’s circular knob, flanked with a set of mode-sensitive keys along with shortcuts to navigation, media, and such. Audi has pared some of these buttons back in the name of simplicity in other cars, but it only takes a couple of days before muscle memory kicks in, and usefully you can replicate just about everything using the shortcut buttons and dials on the steering wheel. Judge a luxury car company not by its flagship but by its compromises: namely, the sacrifices it makes to put its badge – in this case the four Audi rings – on the nose of its smaller, cheaper models. The 2016 Audi A3 2.0T quattro is a case in point, the most affordable way to get the coveted badge on your driveway, but losing some of the bells and whistles along the way. Question is, do those sacrifices outweigh the benefits?
Story TimelineMicrosoft Edge tests built-in Adblock Plus on iOS and AndroidMicrosoft Edge warns Windows 10 users to avoid Chrome and FirefoxMicrosoft Edge to be replaced by Chromium-based browserMicrosoft Edge Chromium rumor just confirmed Microsoft Edge – as a web browser – will be coming with Chromium to Microsoft devices that don’t run a standard version of Windows 10, too. That means Xbox One is onboard for a Chromium web browser, eventually. “We are at the early stages of our journey,” said Alden, “But it is our intention to bring the next version of Microsoft Edge to all Microsoft devices.”Contributions to open source software – Microsoft Edge to Chromium – is outlined as of this week over on Github. The four main Initial Areas of Focus are as follows.Microsoft Contribution to OSS: Initial Areas of Focus:• ARM64: Bring Chromium codebase to support for ARM-64• Accessibility:• PC-hardware evolution for modern input types, especially touch• SecurityMicrosoft also posted what their next steps would be, basically, after their above Github-posted letter of intent was posted. Microsoft Edge Developers Next Steps:1. Contact “the engineering owners of various parts of the Chromium project to engage on how we can begin contributing in the areas listed above. This includes Google as well as other companies.”2. Inform key partners about evolving Edge strategy.3. Make public announcements via blog post4. Post to GitHub so developers and web-community members “can read about our plans directly.”With this release, Microsoft developers are, apparently, “going to be super actively listening to feedback once we ship the preview,” said Alden. “If it doesn’t look right there, let us know!” We’ll know more about how to get in on the ground floor with this set of early builds soon. It might have something to do with that whole Edge Insider sort of business of which Microsoft spoke last week. Last week we confirmed that Microsoft would indeed be re-launching their Microsoft Edge web browser with Chromium innards – today we’ve got news on Chrome extensions. “It is our intention to support existing Chrome extensions,” said Microsoft’s Kyle Alden. It’s not clear yet whether Microsoft will support a Windows 10 version of a Google Chrome sort of app store. It is confirmed that the extensions that’ll work and already do work on the chrome web browser should work for Microsoft Edge with Chromium.
What’s in a name? When it comes to smartphone models, not much really. In fact, sometimes they can be sources of confusion more than identifying marks. Especially when you have more than two devices sharing that same base name. Take, for example, Samsung’s expected trio of Galaxy S10 smartphones. Apparently, the smallest and cheapest of the three won’t be called the Galaxy S10 Lite but, for some reason only Samsung probably understands, it will be marketed as the Galaxy S10 E. “Lite” is definitely more descriptive than a single “E” letter that could stand for anything. However, Huawei already uses that for its more affordable flagship models, which is probably why Samsung wants to distance itself from the label. And, despite the smallest of the three, the 5.8-inch smartphone can’t really be called “Mini” either.“E” may stand for “Economy” because, according to accessory retailer MobileFun’s sources, Samsung is cutting corners to keep the phone within budget prices. This being Samsung, budget prices are most likely still above mid-range anyway. That said, the main feature that Samsung will be cutting out is no secret either.That is, the Galaxy S10 E will be lacking the in-screen fingerprint scanner that the Galaxy S10 and Galaxy S10+ will be rocking. Earlier rumors have pointed out that it will, instead, be using a side-mounted sensor underneath the power button. That will make it a bit harder for case makers as they will have to either leave the power button open for the finger or ensure their material won’t get in the way of the scanner.
For the new Phantom, it’s paired with air suspension and new chassis control systems for the traditional “Magic Carpet” ride the automaker is known for. That uses body and wheel acceleration, steering input, and even the view from the car’s cameras to figure out the millions of suspension setting calculations made every second. A new double-wishbone front axle and 5-link rear axle help with lateral roll and shear forces, paired with all-wheel steering. A stereo camera system – which Rolls-Royce have named the “Flagbearer” in reference to the old requirement of a red-flag carrying servant walking ahead of the earliest cars – tracks the road ahead to preemptively adjust the suspension at speeds up to 62 mph.On top of this new platform is an all-new design. Borrowing from the striking 103EX concept last year, like the spaceframe it’s constructed from aluminum, with Rolls-Royce using especially tight join-lines to make the whole thing look like it’s carved from a single block of metal. Nobody, meanwhile, will mistake that metal for any other marque.At the front, the Pantheon grille has been raised higher than on the outgoing car, leaving the Spirit of Ecstasy a half-inch taller. Rather than standing proud of the bodywork, though, the hand-polished stainless steel grille is integrated into the bodywork, flanked with new laser headlamps that promise light projected almost 2,000 feet down the road ahead. More stainless steel appears on the hood, blending up into the windshield surround. A new Rolls-Royce is something special, but a new Rolls-Royce Phantom is something rare. Having debuted back in 1925, until now only seven generations of car have borne the nameplate. Now, with the arrival of the new 2018 Phantom, there’s an eighth generation, and it promises to be the most luxurious, the most powerful, and the most cosseting of any to-date. There’s no mistaking it for anything else, though the design is completely new versus the outgoing Phantom. It sits upon a completely fresh platform that Rolls-Royce is calling “Architecture of Luxury”: all-aluminum, it’s roughly 30-percent stiffer than the old car, as well as lighter. It’ll be the spaceframe that all the future cars from the automaker are based upon.According to the company, it’s more flexible than any other platform from more mundane automakers. Rather than a simple monocoque, it’s designed to scale to any size or type of car the future plans may call for, including accepting different engine, traction, and control systems. Indeed, it’ll be the basis for the upcoming Project Cullinan SUV, and later on the next Ghost, Wraith, and Dawn. 2018 Rolls-Royce Phantom VIII Gallery From the side, classic features like the privacy-shielding wide C-pillar are retained, but there’s now a softer feel courtesy of the new side-finisher. The rear glass is more sharply raked than before, while the tail tapers more distinctly. The rear lamps get integrated Double-RR badges. Wheels up to 22-inches are offered. Once upon a time, Rolls-Royce didn’t discuss power figures, preferring only to say that its cars had “sufficient” grunt for any driver. Times change, but while the 2018 Phantom’s numbers may be public, what hasn’t altered is that the figures are huge. Blame a new 6.75-liter twin-turbo V12 for that.It’s good for 563 horsepower and 664 lb-ft. of torque, the latter arriving at a low 1,700 rpm. A ZF 8-speed gearbox is linked to satellite-aided transmission software, that looks to the road ahead to select the most appropriate gear in advance. Top speed is an electronically-limited 155 mph, and 0-62 mph comes in 5.3 seconds; not bad for a car weighing 5,862 pounds in short wheelbase form.Not that you’ll really hear that engine. Aiming for the title of “most silent motor car in the world,” the engineers added more than 286 pounds of sound insulation, and spec’d 6mm two-layer glazing for all the glasswork. Double-skin alloy on areas within the floor and bulkhead of the new spaceframe are new to the auto segment, and then heavy foam and felt are inserted between those layers.Meanwhile, new Silent-Seal tires get an extra foam layer inside to cut noise from the internal cavity. The result, Rolls-Royce says, is a car so quiet the acoustic engineer went away to double-check his equipment. It’s roughly 10-percent quieter than the old Phantom at 62 mph. The power-doors close automatically, both front and rear, and in the cabin there’s no shortage of luxury. A huge Starlight Headliner puts LED pinpricks of light overhead, and there’s a vast selection of different wood veneers that can be selected for the door interiors, center consoles, dashboard, and picnic tables. Power-operated rear tables and displays motor out of the back of the new, hand-sculpted seats. Rolls-Royce will offer lounge, individual, individual with fixed center console, and a new “Sleeping Seat” options for the rear. On the tech side, there’s a 360-degree camera view, night vision, active cruise control, a WiFi hotspot, and all the active safety you’d expect from a modern luxury vehicle. The dashboard embeds all the instrumentation into a sheet of toughened glass the automaker is calling The Gallery. Speed and such are shown on a 12.3-inch color display, and there’s an analog clock and a retractable center LCD. The Gallery really is a gallery, mind. The dashboard can play host to a bespoke piece of art, with Rolls-Royce working with a number of designers and artists on projects including porcelain roses, oil paintings, or even gold-plated 3D maps of the owner’s DNA. Alternatively, you can have an artist of your choice create something, or opt for silk, wood, metal, or leather. How much will all this cost you? Pricing is yet to be confirmed, but the 2018 Phantom will not be a cheap vehicle – even before you start personalizing and customizing it. The first orders will begin production in August, with deliveries starting toward the end of the year.
Can’t wait to get your hands on one of the new Samsung Galaxy S10 smartphones? Major wireless carriers in the US have revealed when they will start accepting pre-orders for the devices (hint: it’s tomorrow), as well as the special deals they’ll be offering customers who make a purchase. Depending on carrier, consumers have a chance to get hundreds of dollars in device credit or a second handset for free. AT&T customers will also be able to order the new S10, S10+, and S10e devices from the carrier starting tomorrow, February 21. The phones will first be available through AT&T’s website, later arriving in its stores on March 8.The S10e model will be offered at $25/month for 30 months, while the S10 will be $30/month and the S10+ will be $33.34/month. AT&T is offering its own launch deal, namely the chance to get one device for free when they purchase the S10 128GB, S10+ 128GB, or the S10e.T-MobileThe Uncarrier has announced plans to start accepting Galaxy S10 device pre-orders at 9:01PM PT / 12:01AM ET ahead of the sales start on March 8. The S10, S10+, and S10e models will be available through the carrier, which plans to offer the S10 5G model later this summer.Both new and existing T-Mobile customers who order the phones online are offered up to $620 in bill credits when they trade in an eligible device and add a new voice line. Customers who only add a new line or trade in a device have the chance to get the S10e at half-off and up to $390 off the S10 and S10+ models, as well.Families also have a shot at a deal with the new four unlimited lines for $40/line/month promo on T-Mobile Essentials. This assumes the customer adds a voice line and/or trades in one eligible device per line. The deal includes four Galaxy S10e handsets.SprintAs with the other big US carriers, Sprint has revealed its Galaxy S10 series sales plan, including pre-orders that go live at 11:01PM CT today through the Sprint website. The carrier is offering the S10, S10+, and S10e models under a new deal that gives customers a second Galaxy S10e unit for free. As well, customers who pre-order have the opportunity to get the Galaxy Buds for free.For customers who want to avoid contract plans, Sprint points toward its Boost Mobile subsidiary, which will offer the Galaxy S10e with its no-contract plans. The device will appear in Boost Mobile stores starting on March 8.Xfinity MobileComcast’s Xfinity Mobile wireless service will soon offer the Galaxy S10, S10e, and S10+, the company has announced, each of them in the Prism White, Black, Blue, and Flamingo Pink colors. As well, Xfinity Mobile will offer the S10+ in Ceramic Black and White colors.The company will start accepting pre-orders for the devices tomorrow, February 21, at which point a new deal involving a $250 Visa prepaid card will also go live. From then until April 7, customers will be able to get this deal if they activate a new line, port their number, and purchase one of the new Samsung handsets. Sales officially begin on March 8. VerizonFirst up is Verizon Wireless, the first carrier in the US to offer the Galaxy S10 5G model. Starting at midnight on February 21, Verizon will start taking pre-orders for the S10, S10e, and S10+ models at the following prices:– Galaxy S10e: $749.99 USD | $31.24/month– Galaxy S10: $899.99 USD | $37.49/month– Galaxy S10+: $999.99 USD | $41.66/monthThe Galaxy S10 5G will be opt-in only and pre-orders won’t start until later this year; the price wasn’t provided. As expected, Verizon has some deals to go alongside the new devices, including a Samsung BOGO promo offering a free 128GB Galaxy S10e when one of the above three models are purchased. Alternatively, buyers can get a $750 credit to put toward one of the more expensive Galaxy models.AT&T Story TimelineSamsung Galaxy Fit revealed: automatic activity tracking and sleep analysisGalaxy Watch Active official: Blood Pressure Monitoring in playAll of Galaxy S10’s unique app features: Instagram, Adobe
Some of the first cases for foldable smartphones have been revealed, and there’s a fair chance the beautiful, slimline handset you just spent $2k or more on will be left a lot less visually pleasing. The folding phone battles started earlier this month, when Samsung debuted its Galaxy Fold alongside the Galaxy S10. Huawei then fired back, bringing the Mate X to Mobile World Congress 2019 this past week. Though probably the most polished of the foldables we saw in Barcelona, it certainly wasn’t the only one. Numerous companies brought along prototypes, or confirmed that they, too, were planning to embrace the form-factor. That’s all well and good, but the reality is that many people aren’t going to want to take their folding phone out unprotected. With the Galaxy Fold coming in at just shy of $2,000, and the Huawei even more expensive, that’s a lot of flagship cutting-edge technology to risk dropping or scratching. Making it even more perilous, the plastic foldable screens are going to be far more susceptible to scuffs and gouges than the glass panels we’re currently used to.That means a case is probably on the horizon for many owners, and therein lies a problem. While styles vary, modern smartphone cases typically only have to accommodate a candy bar style slab. A folding phone, though, needs to flex in order to house – and protect – a device that can change its shape. AdChoices广告Judging by the mock-ups case-maker Spigen has shared with The Verge, the “shape changing” aspect is fine, it’s just not guaranteed that the result will look especially pleasing to the eye. It has three prototype designs for the Samsung Galaxy Fold, apparently created using digital models of the upcoming smartphone based on Samsung’s own dimensions. As usual, there’s a balance to be made between how much protection you get, and how discreet your case is. At one extreme, there’s the Spigen Thin Fit for the Galaxy Fold. That’s a skinny grey case, with a cut-out on one side for the smartphones external screen, and a smaller notch on the opposite side for the rear camera. The hinge looks to be a flexible piece of plastic, which stretches out to join the two halves as they clip to each section of the Galaxy Fold. There’s also the Spigen Ultra Hybrid. That’s transparent, and has the same sort of cut-outs as the Thin Fit. The clear finish seems like it will be popular: after all, one of the design features Samsung is highlighting is the colorful covers of the Galaxy Fold and the contrasting hinge. Finally, and for those who demand the most protection, there’s the Spigen Tough Armor for the Galaxy Fold. That’s definitely going to add some bulk, and uses what the company says is a “special constructive structure” so that it both bends and protects. It’s going to make for a super-chunky smartphone overall, though. Indeed you have to question whether the style argument will win out over the protection argument. Certainly, nobody wants their brand new gadget to break, but when you’re an early-adopter of a folding smartphone you’re also putting aesthetics to the fore as a primary reason for purchase.Spigen undoubtedly won’t be the only company releasing cases for folding phones – indeed, Zagg confirms that it, too, has intentions on the segment – but it may take some time before the perfect design arrives. Meanwhile, Samsung, Huawei and others are likely working on their own, in-house designs, though whether they’ll be any more successful remains to be seen. Story TimelineIt’s okay to be excited about the Samsung Galaxy FoldThe Huawei Mate X’s $2,600 price is the least of its problemsSamsung Galaxy Fold vs. Huawei Mate X: battle of the foldReasons to skip the first-generation of Galaxy Fold and Huawei Mate X
Nissan has announced that it is issuing a recall on 166,000 vehicles in the US and Canada due to a defect in the ignition system. The defect can cause the ignitions to wear out over time and lead to the vehicle shutting off while driving down the road. A sudden loss of power while driving could lead to an accident. Nissan is specific in noting that none of the recalled vehicles use the push to start feature. This recall is only for Nissan cars and trucks that have an ignition you place a key into. While Nissan has confirmed the recall directly as of writing the NHTSA hasn’t issued an official recall notice.The Canadian equivalent to the NHTSA is called Transport Canada and it has issued a recall notice and advises Nissan owners to remove everything from their key, such as keyrings etc, to help prevent this issue from occurring. Nissan has said that this recall is cautionary and that it is unaware of any issues related to this recall.Nissan is right to err on the side of caution, a similar GM ignition switch defect in 2014 was linked to at least 13 deaths and 47 crashes. GM’s ignition switches could also turn the car off while in motion and had the potential to disable power steering, brakes, and airbags.AdChoices广告Nissan has an official page where owners of any Nissan vehicle can enter their VIN and determine if their ride has any open recalls. That page can be accessed here.SOURCE: Consumer Reports
Word on the app dev street is that Huawei is trying to discreetly woo Android app makers to publish their wares on the Chinese OEM’s app store. It isn’t yet making a big campaign probably for fear of kicking up a media storm. Not that it was able to avoid that anyway. It really surprised no one that it’s trying to sell the idea of reaching millions of devices across the world but unless Huawei offers a few missing pieces, its call will fall on deaf ears. Huawei needs Android appsThere is no question that Huawei needs apps for its “Plan B” OS to succeed. And not just any set of apps, mind. It has to either be Android apps or the so-called Progressive Web Apps (PWAs) that cover the most popular apps and use cases in the market. And that’s true whether ArkOS is based on Android or not.The OS is important for things like navigation, resource management, and hardware support but 90% of a user’s interaction with the phone will be with apps and the services behind those apps. It is actually not that difficult to customize Android (AOSP technically) to be Google-free. Just ask Amazon or ROM-makers. Few of those, however, succeeded without Google Play Services and the wealth of apps it lets users install.Huawei needs more than Android appsAnd so Huawei’s short-term solution is to encourage those app developers to publish their apps on Huawei’s AppGallery, it’s equally misnamed app store. This isn’t actually new but the timing of its renewed thrust comes just in time when Huawei is reported to be polishing up its Android-replacement.Huawei’s spiel is the reach that developers can have when they publish on AppGallery. If numbers alone are to be considered, it’s clearly a win. If you can publish on Google Play Store and other app stores (including Amazon Appstore), you increase your reach. What Huawei’s alleged email doesn’t talk about, however, is how easy or not it will be for these developers to put their apps on anything other than Google Play Store. And that will be the biggest problem Huawei will face in trying to convince developers to support its cause.Google’s Play: ServicesGoogle Play Store has long ceased to just be an app marketplace, at least as far as developers are concerned. The Store is actually just one part of a larger system collective called Google Play Service or, depending on the focus, Google Mobile Services (GMS). And these do more than just offer Part of Google’s strategy to get developers (and users) hooked into its Google Play system is to offer services and features to make everyone’s lives easier. That includes cloud storage for app data, security and code sanity checks, data messaging and notifications, statistics and analytics, and a whole lot more. These are the features that both devs and users have become so used to that the thought of losing them is enough discourage them from going anywhere else. It’s the perfect platform lock-in.Integrity Catch-22For end-users, the Google Play Store also offers something, one that has always been challenged month after month. It offers a guarantee of security and integrity, promising that apps there are malware-free. Of course, that has its flaws but it’s far better than a third-party platform letting users install any app available, be it APK Mirror or even F-Droid.Huawei’s AppGallery does make similar promises of security-related features to prevent malicious apps and code from getting in. But that all boils down on how much you trust Huawei to do its job well and how free it is from certain agents working in the shadows. Given that the company is now under scrutiny for its alleged involvement in government-sponsored espionage. It may be hard, then, for developers and users to put that much faith on Huawei’s word at face value.What Huawei needsThere’s no question that Huawei needs Android apps, high-quality and popular ones at that. It’s Android replacement, whatever form it take, will not survive outside of China without the apps that people are so used to getting from Google Play Store by now. But even with those apps, it still needs to provide the background services and features that those apps use in making life convenient for users and developers alike.That will be Huawei’s biggest challenge when it comes to quickly raising an app ecosystem post-Google. It may have the networking hardware and knowledge to replace Google’s services, but needs to prove it also has the frameworks and systems to pull it off without requiring too much work from developers. But it also needs to establish trust that it won’t do worse than Google at least and that, unfortunately, is still an open question.
Story TimelineWalmart electric car chargers coming soon from Electrify AmericaPorsche Electric Pit Stop sees faster, smarter EV chargingThe Audi e-tron is great news for Tesla drivers What can be confusing to new electric vehicle drivers – and remain frustrating even for those familiar with EVs – is actually paying for electricity at public locations. With multiple charging networks in operation, each with their own payment systems, figuring out which account works with which charger can prove to be a headache. Electrify America plans to cut through that confusion with Plug&Charge, turning to Hubject to facilitate it. It’s taking advantage of the ISO 15118 global standard, which – among other things – allows EVs to automatically authenticate and authorize a charging session, directly with the charger itself. It’s the first time the technology will be supported in the US. Hubject has been running a pilot scheme of the technology in Germany, bypassing traditional charger membership – which typically involves a phone app, RFID card, or something else in order to log in – for the car doing that itself. Plugging in the charger would trigger an encrypted data connection between the vehicle and the Electrify America network. AdChoices广告While it may not be a familiar name, Hubject has some well-established backers. Among the company’s shareholders are automakers like BMW Group, Mercedes-Benz and Smart parent Daimler, and Volkswagen Group, which includes VW, Audi, Porsche, and others. Bosch, the major tier 1 auto parts supplier, is also on that list, as is Siemens. ISO 15118 doesn’t just mean Plug&Charge, mind. The standard also includes advanced vehicle to grid (V2G) functionality, which could one day be instrumental in using cars as ad-hoc power sources for grid balancing. It also supports more advanced scheduling and smart charging. Electrify America says that all of its chargers – from 50 kW through to 350 kW – will support Plug&Charge after a software update being released later this year. Of course, charger-side support is only one part of the equation. For all this to work, the cars themselves will have to support Plug&Charge too. There, Electrify America says that it’s working with Hubject to help automakers get up to speed with ISO 15118. Given the backers involved, it seems likely that Plug&Charge support will be added to a significant number of high-profile EVs. One of the potential game-changers for EV charging is coming to the US, with Electrify America confirming it’ll be offering Plug&Charge support in its network. The Volkswagen-owned charger business plans to roll out more than 500 DC fast charging locations across the US by the end of the year.
It sounded pretty cool at the time, but the problem was that Spotify only launched it in Australia as something of a small-scale test. Now, nearly a year and a half after it first appeared, Spotify Stations has come to the US on both iOS and Android.If you’ve ever used Pandora before (or even Spotify’s artist radio feature), then you likely already understand how Stations works. When you first launch Stations and log into your Spotify account, you’ll be greeted with a few pre-made stations to start listening to right away. If none of those fit the musical itch you’re looking to scratch, you also have the option of creating new stations centered around one or multiple artists.If you’ve got a free Spotify account, you’ll encounter ads as you listen, and you won’t be able to skip songs that come up. You will be able to rate songs you hear, though, so you can somewhat curate your stations that way. Paid subscribers, on the other hand, can skip as many songs as they want and won’t hear any ads as they listen.The interface for Spotify Stations is pretty simple and easy to navigate, so if you’re looking to dive into music without much of a hassle, it’s definitely an app worth checking out. You can grab it from either the iOS App Store [download] or the Google Play Store [download] beginning today. Story TimelineSpotify Stations launches on Android, but good luck using itSpotify dives into hardware with a device called ‘Car Thing’Social Listening might be Spotify’s edge in music streaming wars Way back in January 2018, Spotify rolled out an interesting little app called Stations. What is essentially Spotify’s answer to Pandora, Stations attempts to get you listening to music right away by creating a number of different radio stations based around your music tastes. No creating and managing playlists, no searching your library for a specific album needed.
Research Roundup: Ameliorating Physician Shortages; Patients’ Perceptions Of Bias Each week, KHN reporter Alvin Tran compiles a selection of recently released health policy studies and briefs.Health Affairs: Primary Care Physician Shortages Could Be Eliminated Through Use Of Teams, Nonphysicians, And Electronic Communication — The authors note that there is a consensus “that the current shortage of primary care physicians will worsen over the next ten years as the nation’s population grows and ages and as insurance coverage expands as a result of the Affordable Care Act.” They examine whether workplace changes will impact that assessment. “We show that the implementation of some increasingly popular operational changes in the ways clinicians deliver care—including the use of teams or ‘pods,’ better information technology and sharing of data, and the use of nonphysicians—have the potential to offset completely the increase in demand for physician services while improving access to care, thereby averting a primary care physician shortage,” they write (Green, Savin and Yu, January 2013).Annals Of Family Medicine: Clinicians’ Implicit Ethnic/Racial Bias And Perceptions Of Care Among Black And Latino Patients – The researchers in this study had earlier conducted a study that found nearly two-thirds of primary care doctors showed some type of implicit bias that favored whites, “even as they rejected explicit expressions of bias.” In the new study, they wanted to determine if the clinicians’ explicit and implicit ethnic/racial bias is linked to minority patients’ perceptions of the care they received. After surveying nearly 3,000 patients, they concluded that “clinicians’ implicit bias may jeopardize their clinical relationships with black patients, which could have negative effects on other care processes. As such, this finding supports the Institute of Medicine’s suggestion that clinician bias may contribute to health disparities. Latinos’ overall greater concerns about their clinicians appear to be based on aspects of care other than clinician bias” (Blair et al., Jan-Feb/2013).The Pew Center On The States: Falling Short: Most States Lag On Dental Sealants – “Dental disease also has serious consequences for state budgets. Between 2010 and 2020, annual Medicaid spending for dental services in the United States is expected to increase 170 percent, from $8 billion to more than $21 billion,” the authors write. Children account for about 60 percent of Medicaid’s total spending on dental services. But while a number of states are making progress, Pew’s analysis suggests that most states are underusing the cost-effective tool of dental sealants – plastic coatings on the chewing surfaces of molars – proven to prevent tooth decay: “State policy makers also need to remove regulations that create unnecessary and costly barriers for dental hygienists, the primary practitioners who apply sealants in school-based programs” (1/8). The Kaiser Family Foundation: Medicaid’s Role In Meeting The Long-Term Care Needs Of America’s Seniors – The authors write: “This brief examines Medicaid’s key role in meeting the long-term care needs of seniors in the United States, particularly those with limited incomes. Medicaid is the nation’s primary payer of long-term services and supports, and state Medicaid programs provide a range of long-term care services. The brief includes state-by-state data on Medicaid enrollment and expenditures for elderly beneficiaries” (Reaves and Young, 1/15).The Kaiser Family Foundation: Medicaid Provider Taxes And Federal Deficit Reduction Efforts – Implementation of the automatic spending cuts in January 2013 (the sequester) that was part of the “Fiscal Cliff” was delayed two months. Medicaid is exempt from the sequester; however, Medicaid cuts could be part of an alternate deficit reduction package. One option that has been mentioned in the debate concerns revenues that states receive from taxes on medical care providers and use for their share of Medicaid spending. This “quick take” highlights the role of provider taxes in states and the possible impact of proposals to limit the use of these taxes (1/10). Here is a selection of news coverage of other recent research:Reuters: Patients Rarely Told About Medication Errors: StudyIn what is likely to come as little surprise, a U.S. study has found that patients and their families are rarely told when hospitals make mistakes with their medicines. Most medication mistakes did not harm patients, the researchers said in a report published in Critical Care Medicine, but those that did were more likely to happen in intensive care units (ICUs) – with ICU patients and their families less likely to be told about errors (Seaman, 1/14).Reuters: Some Docs Screen For Prostate Cancer Without AskingOne in four family doctors doesn’t ask male patients before screening them for prostate cancer, according to a new survey. So-called prostate specific antigen (PSA) testing has been controversial in recent years because of uncertainty about whether it actually saves lives and concern about side effects from potentially unnecessary and invasive follow-up tests and treatments (Pittman, 1/14).Medscape: Surgeons, Intensivists Often Disagree on Postoperative GoalsSurgeons and other intensivists are often at odds regarding postoperative goals of care, according to findings of a cross-sectional study published in the January issue of JAMA Surgery (formerly Archives of Surgery). Among 912 surgeons surveyed, 43% reported conflict with other intensive care unit (ICU) clinicians regarding postoperative goals of care, and 43% reported similar conflict with ICU nurses (Barclay, 1/16).Medscape: Social Media Use by Physicians Can Spur Medical Board ActionA new study has identified several online activities by physicians that are likely to result in investigation by state medical boards. S. Ryan Greysen, MD, from the University of California, San Francisco, and colleagues published their findings in the January 15 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine. The authors mention that this study was prompted by the lack of data on what activities were likely to result in investigation. “Previous research by our group has shown that 60% of U.S. medical school deans had concerns about students posting unprofessional content [such as depicted intoxication and sexually explicit material] and that 71% of U.S. state medical boards have investigated physicians for violations of professionalism online in 1 or more of these categories,” the authors write (Barber, 1/15). This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.
Investors Send WellPoint Stock Lower As They Try To Learn More About New CEO Choice This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription. Investors gave WellPoint’s choice for a new CEO a chilly reception Wednesday, selling off shares in the insurer and driving its stock price down.Los Angeles Times: New WellPoint CEO Gets Cool Reception On Wall StreetInvestors didn’t give a warm welcome to the incoming chief executive of health insurance giant WellPoint Inc. Shares of the nation’s second-largest health insurer fell $3.01, or nearly 5 percent, to $63 in trading Wednesday, a day after the company named a veteran hospital executive to be its next CEO (Terhune, 2/13).The Wall Street Journal: Investors Balk At WellPoint’s Pick For CEOInvestors reacted with surprise to WellPoint Inc.’s choice of hospital executive Joseph R. Swedish as its new chief executive, sending the company’s shares down 4.6 percent Wednesday as many scrambled to learn more about the incoming leader of the second-largest health insurer (Mathews, 2/13).
Viewpoints: Will ‘Rate Shock’ Grow?; Krugman Says GOP Spite Is Driving Opposition To Medicaid Expansion; Determining Who Owns Genes This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription. The New York Times: Why Rate Shock Might Matter Any plausible health care reform, the various conservative alternatives to Obamacare included, would necessarily have losers as well as winners, and as far as potential losers go single young men with above-average incomes are not precisely the country’s most disadvantaged demographic. If you think the current system is flawless, then I suppose any rate increase anywhere is a strike against health care reform. But conservative and libertarian wonks don’t think the system is flawless. … The unanswered question, though, is whether that “a little more” will actually be — or gradually become — a lot. And that’s what’s getting left out of some of the liberal brush-offs … of the “rate shock” issue (Ross Douthat, 6/6). The New York Times: The Spite Club Sure enough, a number of Republican-dominated states seem set to reject Medicaid expansion, at least at first. And why would they do this? They won’t save money. On the contrary, they will hurt their own budgets and damage their own economies. Nor will Medicaid rejectionism serve any clear political purpose. As I’ll explain later, it will probably hurt Republicans for years to come. No, the only way to understand the refusal to expand Medicaid is as an act of sheer spite. And the cost of that spite won’t just come in the form of lost dollars; it will also come in the form of gratuitous hardship for some of our most vulnerable citizens (Paul Krugman, 6/6). The Wall Street Journal: Michigan’s Medicaid Maelstrom The Wolverine State is one of several still sitting on the fence when it comes to the ObamaCare expansion of Medicaid. Michael Reitz of the Mackinac Center, a conservative think tank, tells us that he is increasingly worried that “Republicans may be on the brink of caving on Medicaid.” … An idea gaining traction is to accept the Medicaid dollars but place a four-year lifetime cap on eligibility for able-bodied adults. After four years on the program, Michigan residents would be cut off from any further benefits. Another Republican reform would allow health savings accounts for Medicaid patients as a way to save money. Some Republicans are also demanding a “cancellation” policy that would allow the state to take the money now but opt out of the Medicaid expansion later if costs escalate out of control. Until 2017, the federal government covers 100 percent of the costs (Stephen Moore, 6/6). Bangor Daily News: Medicaid Expansion In Hands Of Seven GOP Lawmakers We have tried to present reasonable arguments to Maine’s Republican lawmakers to urge them to accept federal funding to expand Medicaid. We have emphasized the good financial deal Maine is projected to get, according to independent, outside analyses. We have highlighted the obvious, practical health reasons why tens of thousands more Mainers should have access to care. We criticized lawmakers when they blocked a previous Medicaid expansion proposal. … There is still a little time, however, for a few Republicans to stand up for their communities’ poorest — on whose doors they’ve knocked and asked for votes. It will take only 12 Republicans in the House and Senate for the bill to be veto-proof; five are already on board (6/5).USA Today: Retiree Benefits And ObamaCare Collide Oct. 1, 2013 is a focus of increasing anxiety in this country. That’s the date when enrollments begin for the federally run health insurance exchanges, created under the Affordable Care Act (ACA). No one really knows what to expect, but it could be far worse than advertised — and for a reason that has more to do with the federal deficit than health care. … Amid all these concerns and speculations, almost no attention is being paid to the opportunity that the ACA’s insurance exchanges could represent for state and local governments’ retiree health care programs. It’s time to think about it because the consequences could be far-reaching (David Walker, 6/6). Fox News: Is America Prepared For The Coming ObamaCare Disaster?For years I have been writing about the failures of the UK’s National Health Service (NHS) as a warning for what the Affordable Care Act (aka ObamaCare) will do to health care here in the U.S. London’s Daily Mail has chronicled the growing problems with the NHS, which include declining quality of care and availability of services coupled with increased costs. This is what is in store for us, if Congress does not repeal ObamaCare (Cal Thomas, 6/6). National Journal: Separate And Unequal Access To Health Care?Segregation is still real. Although black-white segregation has, overall, declined steadily since the 1970s, major American metros remain split into black and white areas. … One of those consequences is the disparity when it comes to health care between blacks and whites. The fact that black patients have poorer outcomes in surgery has been well documented. … Recently, researchers at the University of Michigan sought a more-rounded answer to the problem. Their results, published in the journal Health Affairs, highlights a frustrating contradiction. While black patients live closer to high-quality facilities, they are still more likely to get care in low-quality facilities (Brian Resnick, 6/5).The New York Times Room For Debate: Can The Human Blueprint Have Owners? The Supreme Court is expected to decide soon whether human genes can be patented. The case involves patents by Myriad Genetics on the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes, which, when mutated, heighten a woman’s risk of getting cancer. Because of the patents on these genes, which Myriad isolated, the company controls all testing for the mutations. … Should companies be allowed to patent genes? Read the discussion (6/6).Tampa Bay Times: Paying Too Much For Too Little Health Care Exotic prescription drugs and extraordinary end-of-life efforts are not the only factors driving up the cost of health care. It turns out that routine procedures such as colonoscopies cost far more in the United States than in other countries, and vary widely in price. In Tampa, for example, patients pay from $980 to $3,496 in out-of-pocket and insurance costs for a colonoscopy. There is no legitimate reason for such wide differences, and bringing health care costs under control will require increased efforts by consumers and government to demand more openness about pricing and to comparative shop (6/6). JAMA: Eliminating Wasteful, Unnecessary Care Is The Best Way To Preserve MedicareThe release this past week of the Medicare Trustees’ report was met with widespread enthusiasm among health economists and supporters of the federal health reforms in the Affordable Care Act (ACA). … Reduced Medicare spending might be a small silver lining of the recession, but it is not a strategy anyone would pursue to preserve the program (Andrew Bindman, 6/6).Roll Call: Message To Congress: Immigrants Pay More Than Their ‘Fair Share’ Of MedicareImmigrants don’t just pick our fruit, deliver our take-out food and design our computers — they pay for our medical care. As Congress debates immigration reform, some would have us believe that immigrants are draining the Treasury. But it turns out that closing the borders would deplete Medicare’s trust fund (Steffie Woolhander and David U. Himmelstein, 6/6).
Health News Florida: New Florida Law Allows More Vets To Receive Treatment Twelve health centers in Florida will get more than $10 million from the federal government to renovate, expand and increase capacity to serve underserved patients, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services announced this week. (Ochoa, 5/5) Florida will get more than $1.6 million as part of a large multistate settlement involving Olympus America. The device-maker is paying $306 million to several states and the federal government to settle allegations that it paid illegal kickbacks to health care providers, according a statement from Attorney General Pam Bondi’s Office. Olympus allegedly used improper financial incentives, including free and no-charge loans, to encourage doctors and hospitals to buy its endoscopes and surgical equipment, “unlawfully increasing sales and to gain market shares,” according to Bondi’s office. (Miller, 5/5) Health News Florida: Florida Health Centers Get $10.7M To Expand, Upgrade Federal health officials this week announced $6 million in funding to six community health centers in Georgia for facility renovation and expansion. (Miller, 5/5) A new Florida law allows more military vets to qualify for a diversion program meant to keep offenders out of prison. One Jacksonville army veteran said this program saved his life. (Elder, 5/5) The Orlando Sentinel: Florida Gets $1.6 Million From Olympus Settlement New Hampshire Public Radio: Jail Doctor Agrees To Stop Treating Inmates Pending Investigation Georgia Health News: 6 Georgia Health Centers Get New Federal Funds Republican legislative leaders want Gov. Jerry Brown to include $200 million in additional money for low-income dental services in the revised budget proposal he releases next week, saying the increase would help improve a program criticized as a “vicious circle of dysfunction” in a recent report. (Miller, 5/5) The Associated Press: NY Prison Guard Pleads Guilty In Hearing Aid Scam A New York prison guard has pleaded guilty to misdemeanor charges that he participated in a $1.6 million scheme to sell state workers earbuds and earplugs while billing the state insurance system for hearing aids.State Inspector General Catherine Leahy Scott announced Auburn Correctional Officer Joshua Powers’ plea on Thursday. Authorities say the owner of a Syracuse-area hearing aids store paid Powers $72,000 to refer hundreds of state workers to his practice, where he sold them earbuds and earplugs. The devices were billed to the state at $3,000 per device. (5/5) The Orlando Sentinel: Orange County EMS Tests New Way To Detect Sepsis Orange County paramedics and hospitals are among the first in the nation to create and use an alert system for sepsis, a condition that can lead to organ failure or death. Sepsis is mostly identified in the hospital with blood tests, but local researchers are showing that paramedics can use a simple breath measurement to identify potential cases of sepsis in the field and prepare the hospitals for arrival of the patients. (Miller, 5/5) The Sacramento Bee: California Republican Lawmakers Want More For Dental Care Program The Associated Press: Feds: NYC To Pay $4.3M To Settle FDNY Medicare Billing Case State Highlights: Calif. Lawmakers Press For More Dental Funding; NYC Settles Ambulance Billing Dispute Outlets report on health news in California, Florida, Georgia, New Hampshire and New York. The physician at Manchester’s Valley Street Jail has agreed not to practice medicine at any correctional facility while the Board of Medicine investigates allegations that inmates received substandard care. The board issued an emergency order April 28 that temporarily suspended the license of Matthew Masewic, who has been physician at the Hillsborough County jail since 2009. In agreeing to the terms of the order, Masewic has not admitted to any misconduct. (Corwin, 5/5) Prosecutors say New York City will pay $4.3 million to settle claims that its fire department improperly received reimbursement from Medicare for ambulance calls that didn’t meet the federal requirement for medical necessity. The settlement was announced Thursday by the U.S. attorney’s office in Manhattan. (5/5) This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.