Oculus Connect 5 Tomorrow; Apple Watch Gets 2nd Manufacturer; Google Chrome Addressing Log in Privacy; ARM Chip Just for Autonomous Cars; Airport Face Scanning #FAIL

Facebook is holding their Oculus Connect 5 event in San Jose. According to techcrunch.com, they will be showing off their stand alone headset, which has been code named ’Santa Cruz.’ What’s unknown now is the pricing. With the Oculus Go selling for $199, some analysts expect the free standing headset to run $349-$399. It will be powered by a Snapdragon 845, while the Go has the older 821 chip set. Also expected tomorrow will be a sneak peak at the next-gen Oculus Rift. The present Rift is 2 years old, and it’s thought the update will utilize the ‘half dome’ manner of lenses focusing on objects…dynamically like your eyeballs instead of fixed focal distance. [UPDATE: The Oculus Quest, a standalone VR headset that uses touch controllers, will go on sale next spring for $399. Mark Zuckerberg unveiled the product today at the company’s Oculus Connect developer conference.]

It’s been noted that the Apple Watch 4 is selling much better than Apple had expected. Now, macrumors.com says Apple is adding another manufacturer in Taiwan to help keep up with demand. Compal Electronics will begin mass producing Watch 4 in November, joining Quanta Computer, which is apparently maxed out trying to keep up with Apple Watch 4 sales. Apple Watch is now not only the most popular smartwatch by an number of metrics, but has apparently passed Rolex as the world’s most popular watch of any kind.

We just reported that there was a dubious feature that when you logged into a Google account, you got logged into Chrome too, and your browsing data got sent to Google. Now, thenextweb.com reports Google will address this privacy concern in the next release of Chrome….which will be version 70. With the update, you will be able to toggle an option called Allow Chrome sign-in, so can choose not to if you prefer. Also to be addressed is a nasty little issue…Chrome 69 apparently keeps Google cookies EVEN if you delete them! They have promised that 70 will fix this issue, too.

ARM has added what they call a Split-Lock feature to their 64 bit Cortex A76…which will now be the A76AE….for automotive enhanced. According to the Register, the improved chip is aimed at running code controlling self-driving vehicles. By allowing the split of cores, if there’s a malfunction, the other core should be able to keep running code, which is pretty important when it’s driving your vehicle. ARM hopes the improvement will keep them in the self-driving auto game along with Intel and Nvidia.

The US has been testing face scanning at airports, but with less than stellar results so far. Engadget.com says they are only catching about 85%, and have trouble matching people from specific age groups and countries. The Inspector General’s Office says they may not be ready for deployment in the top 20 airports by 2021 as originally planned.


Uber Launches Separate UberEats App; Drone Catcher Nets and Neutralizes Rogue Drones

This week, Uber launched its free standing UberEats app, starting with service in Los Angeles. Availability will start to show up in other cities around the country through the month. Businessinsider.com says what had been just a lunch service will now be for lunch and dinner, and will allow for deliveries of select dishes or full-menu items from restaurants. After you order, a specially trained Uber driver equipped with lunch bags to keep food warm or cold will deliver the food while you track it with the app. Uber has designed to app to open with professionally shot pictures of food to entice you…they expect people to keep the app open even after the food is ordered…hence, the tracking feature.

A British company called OpenWorks Engineering has showed off the SkyWall100, a shoulder mounted cannon that can fire a projectile that catches potentially hazardous drones with a net instead of destroying them. According to gizmodo.com, the programmable projectile shot from the 22 pound compressed gas powered launcher can net the drone, then parachute it to the ground in one piece. The device is equipped with ECM jamming, too. It should be a big help in keeping places like airports clear, and allows for forensic analysis of the captured drone, to find out who was operating it.