Wireless Broadband For Rural Areas and Some Cities

Carriers are testing a combination of laser and radio to get broadband to rural areas where it’s not practical to run fiber optic lines. Engadget.com says it will help in cities with a lot of municipal red tape like San Francisco, too.

Don’t look now, but lawyers are gearing up to use Fitbit data in court in personal injury cases. Forbes.com reports a Canadian firm is doing so right now, to show accident effects on their client.

According to zdnet.com, Samsung display will launch a flexible smartphone display that can be folded in half. Parent Samsung plans to roll out 30% less different smartphone models next year, trying to compete better with Apple.

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Interactive Shopping Maps From Target

Target has added an enticement for holiday shoppers. Geekwire.com reports they’ve added interactive maps of all their stores to their iPhone app. They’ve also added free shipping for target.com buys to battle Amazon.

The European ‘right to be forgotten’ by Google may be extended worldwide. A French court has ruled that way, according to 9to5google.com. Google is reviewing the ruling and considering its options.

There’s a way coming to connect to your dumb smoke alarm. It’s a Kickstarter called Roost…a 5 year battery in a 9 volt size that also connects to your smartphone with an app. $55 buys you two, and it’s out late Spring.


More Picture Space For Your Smartphone

If you take a lot of selfies, and are always running out of space, there’s a new app called PhotoShrinker. Techcrunch.com says it’s out for iOS and Android, and will compress your photos to a tenth their original size, making room for more. The shrunken pix look fine online, etc. but save a normal copy for any you intend to make large, actual prints from.

Appleinsider.com reports that the iPhone 6 is outselling the larger 6 Plus by a 3 to one margin in the US. The study comes from Consumer Intelligence Research Partners. The average storage size is now 48 gigs, which shows that more people are buying the 64 gig and 128 gig models…which means more profit for Apple.

A nice feature in the latest Kindle software just being pushed out…gigaom.com says Family Library lets people with Amazon accounts linked to family members share ebooks others have downloaded.


Samsung Joins Apple Chasing the In Store Beacon Biz

Not wanting to cede mall business entirely to Apple’s iBeacon, Samsung has introduced Proximity. Engadget.com says unlike Apple’s iBeacon, which takes an app, Samsung will serve in store ads on the system level.

Cnet.com reports that LG has snagged it’s highest ever market share in North America…16.3 percent. That’s more than double the 7.4 of a year ago, and mainly due to the LG G-3 flagship phone.

Chip suppliers for the Apple Watch are gearing up to start production. Apple insider.com picked up a report from DigiTimes that says indications are for 30 to 40 million Apple Watches. It’s expected out in the spring.


Beats Solo 2 Headphones Cut the Cord

Beats best selling Solo 2 headphones have cut the cord. Gigaom.com says the wireless Bluetooth phones should last 12 hours on a charge, and are $299. There’s no Apple branding, and they charge with Micro USB, not Apple’s Lightning cable.

For the cat lover with everything, there’s Tailio…a $100 net connected scale that sits under the letterbox. Engadget.com reports the kickstarter device weighs kitty, and tells you when to change the box…if your nose hasn’t already!

Last summer Amazon asked permission from the FAA to test drone deliveries. Now, not content to wait on the US, thenextweb.com says they’re planning to start testing in Britain.


Fitness Tracking Hats & Googly-Eyed Smartphones

There are lots of fitness trackers you wear like a watch or bracelet…how about one for your head? Lifeboat is making hats and visors that track heart rate, cadence, gait, steps and calorie consumption. Cnet.com says they’re $99 and work with Android, Windows, or iOS.

Appleinsider.com reports that Apple’s been granted a patent that uses geofencing and crowdsourcing to pinpoint dead spots in cellular networks. It’s good for users, but phone carriers will hate it!

LG has rolled out midrange smartphones with Tamagotchi like personalities. Gigaom.com says if you like a phone with big, googly eyes, check out the Aka line.


Firefox Scores a ‘Forget’ Button On Its Anniversary

For their 10th anniversary, the open Firefox browser has added a ‘Forget’ button. Thenextweb.com says it will clear your history, cookies, etc. for the past 5 minutes, 2 hours or 24 hours. This is in addition to private mode.

Kidizen-a mobile startup to sell your used kids clothes, toys, and the like- is expanding 50% month to month. Unlike similar sites such as ThreadUP, tech crunch.com reports sellers keep 90% of the selling price. That might beat a yard sale or craigslist hands down.

Moving into mid priced smartphones more, Samsung is dropping a cool 3 billion to build a second factory in Vietnam. 9to5google.com says cheaper wages and tax breaks sealed the deal.