Alphabet reports record-breaking $26B revenue in Q2 2017

Alphabet has revealed Google’s earnings for Q2 2017. The company recorded $26 billion in revenue, 21% UP compared to the same quarter last year. Net income is only $3.5 billion because of the $2.7 billion fine by the European Commission.

The advertising business rose 18% and brought in $22.7 billion, driven by a 52% increase in paid clicks. “Other bets” by Alphabet that include Nest, Fiber and other companies recorded an operating loss of $772 million. This is less than the $855 million back in Q2 2016.

In a separate announcement, Alphabet announced its newest member of the Board of Directors. His name is Sundar Pichai, CEO of Google since 2015. He is responsible for Google’s product development and technology strategy and will answer to the board on the same issues.


HTC Summer Sunset Sale: HTC 10 and U Ultra get big discounts in the US

HTC has kicked off the Summer Sunset Sale with a couple of great discounts. We checked the various regional sites, this particular deal seems to be available only in the US.

An HTC 10 is down to $400 (from $700). The HTC U Ultra is $500 (down from $750). Then there’s the UA HealthBox for $220. You’ll get a free gift if you buy any one of these three.

Note that these are much better prices than the earlier sale, which asked $500 for the HTC 10 and $630 for the U Ultra. An HTC U11 is currently $650, though it was reduced to $600recently.

If you’re just looking for a case, you can get one for the One A9, M9 or M8 for just $10.

Hit the Source link to check out the deals.


Mini to launch new fully electric model by 2019

Mini to launch new fully electric model by 2019

BMW is currently working on electrifying all its model series. Over the next few years, the brand will launch a full-electric or plug-in hybrid drivetrain in addition to the combustion engine option. Additional electrified models will be brought to market and beyond 2020; the company’s next-gen vehicle architecture will be structured in order to enable new models also to be offered as a full-electric vehicle.

As part of this new strategy, BMW has just announced the new battery-electric Mini which will be a variant of the brand’s core 3-door hatch version. This fully electric car will go into production in 2019 at the BMW Group’s e-mobility centre at Dingolfing and Landshut facilities in Bavaria before being integrated into the car at Oxford plant which is the main production location for the 3-door hatch.

By 2025, BMW expects electrified vehicles to account for between 15-25 per cent of sales. However, factors such as regulation, incentives and charging infrastructure will play a major role in determining the scale of electrification from market to market. BMW is also working on enabling its production facilities to build models with a combustion engine, plug-in hybrid or fully electric drive train at the same time.


Best Buy is currently selling the HDHomeRun Connect for $70

hdhomerunconnect 3

If you’ve been thinking about going the cord-cutter route, consider this a sign. Best Buy is selling the SiliconDust HDHomeRun Connect for $70 right now. This external TV tuner features two tuners, allowing you to watch over-the-air (OTA) broadcast TV on two sets or to record one show while watching the other.

The Connect’s specifications say it supports up to 1080p, but broadcast TV is usually 1080i. That’s still 1920-by-1080 resolution, however. The one extra thing you will need in addition to the tuner is a digital antenna.

Once you’re all set up the Connect allows you to pause, rewind, and record broadcast TV. It also works with “most DLNA TVs,” allowing you to hook the device into your router for a multi-room setup.

When we reviewed the Connect back in 2015, we really liked this box. It’s a solid tool for cord cutters who still want to pick up local broadcasts for live sports and the like. You can also use it in concert with Plex and a PC as a heavy-duty DVR.

The one thing the Connect lacked when we reviewed it two years ago was any kind of first-party software to access the tuner on devices. That has since changed, with apps available for Windows 10, Mac, Linux, and Android.

hdhomerunconnect 2SiliconDust

[ Today’s deal: SiliconDust HDHomeRun for $70 at Best Buy. ]


Surface Laptop vs. Surface Pro 4: We compare prices, features and more

Updated 07/22/17 with additional data from our review of the Surface Laptop. Check out the Battery and Performance sections for the new comparisons. 

Microsoft’s Surface Laptop is aimed at supplanting the MacBook Air as a college-student favorite. The svelte, stylish clamshell also fills a middle ground between its cousins, the Surface Pro 4 tablet and Surface Book powerhouse 2-in-1, providing a third option that could appeal to many regular consumers.

We got a good first impression of the Surface Laptop after going hands-on in advance of its June launch. Now that we’ve reviewed it, we can help you decide whether it’s a better choice than the Surface Pro 4, with its promise of a tablet that can be a full-fledged computer. Let’s dig in!

Price: Beyond many students’ budgets

surface laptop surfacepro 4 prices accessories

Rob Schultz / IDG

You really need to add a Type Cover keyboard to your Surface Pro 4 purchase.

Neither the Surface Pro 4 nor the Surface Laptop is especially cheap, as the prices above indicate. Selecting the right Surface Laptop comes with a caveat: It’s aimed at education, where you’ll be subject to the whims of professors who dictate what software to buy. The entry-level models with 4GB of RAM may struggle if burdened with demanding applications. The models with 8GB of RAM or more will have better staying power.

Buying a Surface Pro 4 is a bit more straightforward. Note that these prices do not include a Type Cover attachable keyboard, which costs an additional $130 to $160 depending on the model. While you could theoretically do without one, you’ll make your life a lot easier if you add a Type Cover to your shopping list.

While asking college students to pay north of $1,500 for a higher-end Surface Laptop seems unrealistic, even if the alternative is an equally pricey MacBook Air, the most viable comparison is between the Surface Laptop with Core i7/8GB RAM/256GB SSD ($1,599) and the near-identically configured $1,349 Surface Pro 4 plus Type Cover (for a total of $1,479-$1,509). Note that the Surface Laptop offers a more advanced 7th-generation (Kaby Lake) Intel Core processor, while the Surface Pro 4 is stuck with the 6th-generation (Skylake) chip.


Suzuki Swift Sport revealed ahead of Frankfurt debut

Suzuki Swift Sport revealed ahead of Frankfurt debut

Suzuki has revealed the first official image of the new generation Swift Sport ahead of its world premiere at the 2017 Frankfurt Motor Show. No other details regarding the powertrain, pricing and features have been revealed yet, however, the third generation Swift Sport has “undergone a complete redesign and delivers an all-new level of excitement for sport minded drivers across the world,” according to Suzuki.

Of the single image available to us, we can see a completely new and aggressive front bumper as compared to standard Swift. The grille is reworked while the alloy wheels are now very Italian-esque. There is a blacked out bumper splitter that adds to the sporty character of the hot hatch. One thing to be noted is that the new Swift Sport will only be available in the four-door configuration unlike the two generations before it which were two-doors only.

The new Swift Sport is expected to retain the characteristics like handling and body control of the outgoing Swift Sport. Based on the new HEARTECH platform, the new Swift Sport will be a lot lighter than the previous two generations. It will keep on the manual transmission as well. On the inside, the new Swift Sport will have new cabin tech and features including new infotainment system and all the connectivity options.

The Japanese carmaker is still tight lipped about what will power the new Swift Sport, but there are speculations that the new Swift Sport will have a turbocharged 1.4-litre Boosterjet gasoline motor under the hood which does duty in the Suzuki Vitara S. The power output is expected to be somewhere around 140bhp.

Prices for the new Swift Sport are expected to be slightly higher than the outgoing car. It will take on the likes of Abarth 500, Ford Fiesta ST, Renault Clio, and Volkswagen UP GTI. Just like the previous generation Swift Sports, the Indian debut of the new potent Swift is equally unlikely.


Sports photographer leads Regina workshop

Sports photographer Arthur Ward led a photography workshop in Regina on Saturday.

Sports photographer Arthur Ward led a photography workshop in Regina on Saturday. (Photo by Arthur Ward)

Aspiring sports photographers had a chance to learn from a seasoned veteran at a workshop in Regina on Saturday.

“Sportrait” specialist Arthur Ward was on hand at the Saskatchewan Science Centre, schooling interested parties on the ins and outs of what makes a gripping sports photo.

Arthur Ward 2

Sports photographer Arthur Ward says getting to know athletes helps him anticipate their moves on the field. (Photo by Arthur Ward)

Exposure: in camera and on the field.

Ward’s prowess with a camera is rooted in a lifetime of experience, though not all of it has been behind the lens.

“I’ve always had an interest in sports. Growing up, I just loved going out and being active,” Ward said.

Ward competed in track and field for 15 years and recently did a five-year stint at the University of Regina with the Cougars.

“It was actually when I came to the U of R, that’s the point when my love of sports and my interest in photography merged,” he said.

Humble beginnings

Ward photographed for the university newspaper The Carillon. Eventually, given his love for sport, he gravitated to shooting the Cougars teams, he said.

Sports photography is rarely a static exercise. It’s fast-paced work, but requires more than a long lens and a machine-gun shutter, Ward said.

“You have to be patient,” he said. “It’s easy to go after the action. It’s easy to follow the ball. It’s easy to point your lens in the direction that everybody’s looking.”

Arthur Ward 3

Sports photographer Arthur Ward says getting a gripping sports image requires patience. (Photo by Arthur Ward)

“But if you’re patient and you know what you’re looking for, you can get the magazine cover shot, so to speak.”

Often times, the best photos are the ones none of the other photographers saw, he said, noting that exclusivity adds value to an image.

Taking a risk

He recalled Cougars men’s basketball game a few years back. The game was coming down to the wire in the fourth quarter. Regina was trailing by a few points and the players on the bench were full of emotion. Ward decided then that he’d forget the game and just focus on the bench.

He knew it was a risk.

“When you decide to do something like that, it’s like the universe is working against you,” he said, recalling the anxiety he felt as he missed shot after shot on the court.

Finally, a home-team player sunk a three-point shot and the players on the bench went wild. Ward’s camera immortalized the moment – a victory on both sides of the lens.

Arthur Ward 4

Sometimes getting a great sports photo is about taking a risk and shooting what none of the other photographers are, says sports photographer Arthur Ward.

Social interaction

Getting to know the athletes is also a part of what Ward does, and he likes to chat with them about things other than sport, he said.

“Believe it or not, by just knowing little things that appeal to them and what makes them click, you can sort of read their minds,” he said.

“It sounds a bit far-fetched,” he admitted, but said that knowing the athletes helps him anticipate their movements on the field.

The workshop was designed as a “collaborative event” where students could take the lead and teach the group about their own approaches and techniques.

“I find, within the field of photography or most creative fields, it’s all about collaboration,” Ward said.

“That’s how you grow as an individual in photography.”


The TV Buying Guide for People Who Want a Less-Crappy TV

Buying a television can be even more confusing than deciphering your cable bill. So here’s how to demystify the tech, decode the abbreviations, and make sure you walk away with the best set your money can buy.

1. Make It Easy on Yourself
The overwhelming process of buying a TV feels way more manageable when you realize that all the best TVs are “smart,” plasma is dead, and 3-D never should’ve existed. So forget that stuff! You actually have fewer decisions to make than you used to.

2. Lock in Your Budget
At the $700-to-$1,000 price range, you’re in the sweet spot: You’ll get 80 percent of the latest features, image quality, and design of crazy-expensive flagship models. You can get a 42-inch TV with stunning image quality or a massive 65-inch-plus television that—somehow—looks incredible (but turns your living room into a media room).

3. Remember: With TVs, “Bigger” Means “Way, Way Bigger”
You know how you’re supposed to measure your floor space before buying a rug? This is even more important. Use painter’s tape to map it out on your wall, remembering that—thanks to geometry—a 75-inch TV has more than double the screen area of a 50-inch one.

4. Know Only Three Abbreviations!

  1. UHD: Ultra HD. Otherwise known as 4K. The highest standard for pixels and clarity. You want this.
  2. HDR: High dynamic range. Better contrast ratio—blacker blacks, brilliant whites—and more of everything in between mean a better picture quality.
  3. OLED: Organic light-emitting diode. As with organic food, it’ll cost ya—but it’s worth the bucks for breathtakingly lifelike images.

5. Actually Go to a Store
You might be thinking about skipping the showroom. But that’s like buying a car without test-driving it. Fiddle around with the settings, watch something other than the glorious Planet Earth scene it’s probably playing, and zone out the other, more expensive units set up next to the one you’re looking at. Use your hands as blinders if necessary. Finally, ask the salesperson, “Could you help me find an HDMI cable?” If he steers you toward something under $15, trust him. If he offers you a $55 ultra-speed booster-pack HDMI, thank him for his time and Amazon Prime your TV on the way out.

…Or Skip All That and Just Go Buy One of These

The Best TV Under $1,000:
Vizio’s long had a rep for making the best budget TVs, and this year’s E-Series is again a huge value: 60 inches of 4K and HDR for a lot less than a grand.
$750 |


The Greatest TV of All Time:
At 3.8 millimeters thick, the LG Signature OLED TV W looks like part of your wall. General rule: The thinner the TV, the thinner your wallet. This is as thin as it gets.
$7,999 |


Tips to prep up your car for the monsoons

Here’s a list of tips for you to protect your car during the monsoons and get through the rains easily.

Here’s a list of tips for you to protect your car during the monsoons and get through the rains easily.

While rains bring with them much-needed respite from the scorching summer heat, it also creates annoying traffic problems and disrupts the daily life, not to mention a host of problems for car owners to deal with. Often you may catch the site of a stalled car on the road in the middle of a downpour while you thank your stars that it isn’t you in that situation.

What if we told you that there are measures you can take to avoid being caught in such a situation and avoid pulling your hair out? Here’s a list of tips for you to protect your car during the monsoons and get through the rains easily:



Brakes are among the most crucial parts of a car, especially during monsoons. Keep the brake calipers clean. Make sure that the brakes are neither too tight nor too loose since you will need to use it a fair number of times when driving on wet roads. You must regularly clean the brake pads, and if needed replace them. Get the brake fluid checked and refilled regularly and make sure the brake line does not let in water or air that obstructs the flow of brake fluid.



Check the tyre pressure and inflation regularly during the monsoon since tyres tend to lose air pressure often during the rains. Also, make sure the tyre tread depth is at least 1.6mm deep to avoid skidding on slippery surfaces.

Wipers and washer


Wiper blades tend to wear out quite soon. Make sure you get the wipers checked and replaced if required, before the monsoon sets in. Also, ensure the wipers are functioning as they should at all speeds.Meanwhile, to keep your windshield spotless, it is advisable to use washing liquids.



Rainwater can corrode exposed metal areas as well as the car’s paint leading to rust on the body. A good way to ensure protection for the car is by applying a thin layer of wax polish on the body, allowing rainwater to roll off. Grease the locks and hinges of the car doors and use anti-corrosion spray on exposed metal areas.

Headlights and taillights

Headlights and taillights

Ensure that the car’s headlights and taillights are working properly. As heavy rainfall causes poor visibility, properly functioning lights can help avoid mishaps for you as well as other drivers.



Get all electrical connections in the car checked and make sure external wires are insulated. Also, ensure all the fuses are functioning as they should. You can also keep extra fuses in the car. Check the parking light and brake light since it advisable to keep them on while driving during low visibility.



High water levels on the roads can end up flooding your car and a good way to get on top of this situation is to place an additional set of mats on the floor to soak up the water. Keep a portable vacuum cleaner in the car to dry the wet floors or seats and to keep away the bad odor. When your car is parked in a dry spot, open the windows to air out the car and prevent any fungal formation.


Game of Thrones’ Comic-Con trailer teases the show’s most long-awaited alliance

Image result for Game of Thrones’ Comic-Con trailer tea

“Every possible series of events is happening all at once,” Littlefinger tells Sansa Stark in the newly released trailer for the rest of Game of Thrones season seven, which HBO unveiled at a Friday-evening Comic-Con panel after it was leaked online earlier in the day.

He could have just as well been talking about the trailer itself, a “weeks ahead preview” that races through the show’s various groups of characters to show us alliances and armies coming together throughout Westeros in the coming season, as Daenerys makes her play for the throne and the North tries to defend itself against the Night King and his ice zombie horde. 

Among the most notable moments in the trailer:

  • Jon Snow openly discusses teaming up with Daenerys in order to make use of her dragons to battle the Night King. Later, Melisandre, whom eagle-eyed fans had realized was already at Dragonstone when Dany arrived there on last week’s episode, tells Dany that she believes Dany “has a role to play — as does another.”

This is a fateful moment for the show, since it indicates that Melisandre will help bring Jon Snow and Daenerys together for what will undoubtedly be Game of Thrones’ most significant partnership. (While she undoubtedly believes Jon is the fabled “prince that was promised,” a recent fan theory has posited that she could be wrong, thanks to the Hound’s powerful redemption arc.) This is the alliance fans have been waiting for since Season 1 — or 1996, if you were following the fantasy novel series first.

  • Randyll Tarly, the father of Samwell — who we know loathes Wildlings and probably hates Jon Snow in the bargain thanks to his latest disastrous reunion with Sam — turns up for a visit with Cersei in the Iron Throne Room. He’s a powerful ally — but as we know, he’s lately down one Valyrian sword.
  • We get a glimpse of Jorah Mormont in Oldtown. We heard him briefly on the last episode, but it’s good to see him in the flesh and know he’s not been totally taken over by greyscale.
  • We see Euron Greyjoy making himself at home in King’s Landing. Looks like his bid to win Cersei’s hand in marriage is going well — so far.
  • Several battle scenes occur, one of them featuring the Unsullied scaling the walls of a castle — possibly Casterly Rock. Meanwhile, Cersei is rallying her armies to stave off “the mad king’s daughter.”
  • Lyanna Mormont announces, “Winter is here, your grace” — which we already knew, but let’s face it, you’re excited to see Lyanna say pretty much anything.
  • [Source:-vox]