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Updated: 1 hour 49 min ago

Tesla’s Model 3 scores the company’s first top safety award from IIHS

4 hours 19 min ago

Tesla often touts that its cars are really safe, but the company has just received a specific recognition of that safety for the first time ever: the Model 3 was just awarded “top safety pick” from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). The Model S had previously fallen short of earning top marks from IIHS, and the Model X was never tested by the nonprofit group,

The Model 3 is the second battery electric car to earn the award, as Audi’s E-Tron was the first to earn the honor back in August. Like the E-Tron, the Model 3 earned “good” ratings in all categories, which is the best distinction the IIHS gives out. The Model 3 was only really dinged in two places. IIHS said that pre-June 2018 versions of the car only had...

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Apple releases two new trailers showing off its TV Plus children’s shows

8 hours 15 min ago
Image: Apple

Apple today posted trailers and new info for two of its original shows destined for its upcoming Apple TV Plus streaming service. The programs, the family-oriented shows Helpsters and Ghostwriter, are slated to arrive on launch day for TV Plus, which will be available starting November 1st. We can’t embed the trailers, but they’re available on the Apple TV Plus sites linked below.

The first, Helpsters, is a show for preschoolers about monsters who love to help people solve problems. The show is made by the Sesame Workshop, and in the trailer, the studio’s knack for blending puppets with real-world locations is on full display. The main monster, Cody, walks down a busy city street before singing a song with her monster companions at...

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Netflix is debating bonuses for directors with popular or award-winning films

8 hours 40 min ago
Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge

Netflix is mulling over paying some form of bonuses to filmmakers whose movies perform well on the streaming platform or nab prestigious awards, according to a report from Bloomberg. The tactic would be a way to win over on-the-fence directors and producers who might be shopping a project around at multiple streaming services, while also entertaining the idea of a traditional theatrical release.

According to Bloomberg, the bonus idea is still being debated internally, but it could be a costly change in strategy for Netflix. The company has traditionally covered the cost of production and paid fixed premiums to filmmakers and producers on top of that.

Hollywood operates differently. Studios tend to grant talent — typically directors and...

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Google almost had a Pixel smartwatch — here’s why it reportedly failed

9 hours 7 min ago

Google’s Pixel-branded smartwatch was supposedly very close to being a real thing. As detailed in a Business Insider report that interviewed six former employees, Google hardware lead Rick Osterloh reportedly dropped the axe on the idea just ahead of the original Pixel phone’s unveiling in 2016. The main reason for the sudden change in plans, according to an employee who reportedly worked on the project, was because they “didn’t look like what belonged in the Pixel family.”

Google was gearing up for its first big attempt at building an gadget ecosystem, and a former employee said the company feared the watches might “...bring down the name of the Google hardware brand.” Also, one former employees said the syncing process between the...

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Here’s how cross-play will work in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare

9 hours 37 min ago

The next game in the massive Call of Duty franchise, a reboot of the Modern Warfare series, launches in just over a month, in line with Activision’s annual release model. Yet new to this Call of Duty entry is cross-play multiplayer, so you can squad up with your friends across systems. Now, the developers at studio Infinity Ward have detailed how exactly cross-play will work in advance of an open beta that will support the feature kicking off this weekend.

Cross-play in Modern Warfare sounds a lot like how it works in Epic’s battle royale shooter Fortnite, which has become the industry gold standard. Infinity Ward says that Modern Warfare supports keyboard and mouse and controllers on all platforms, and you’ll be able to choose...

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CBS and WarnerMedia ban e-cigarette advertisements amid vaping health crisis

10 hours 22 min ago
Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge

CBS and WarnerMedia have both decided to ban advertisements for Juul and other e-cigarette makers amid global health concerns over a mysterious vaping-related lung disease that has claimed the lives of seven people and hospitalized hundreds of others. The decision, reported first this afternoon by CNBC, follows a similar ban from WarnerMedia-owned CNN announced last week.

CBS tells CNBC it will consider allowing vaping ads once research can show definitively that the products are not harmful. WarnerMedia, which has run Juul ads in recent weeks on cable channels it owns like TBS and TNT, will no longer accept such ads, which have spiked, in particular from Juul, since news of the vaping-related lung disease cases came under heightened...

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India bans e-cigarette sales and says there’s an ‘epidemic’ of kids vaping

10 hours 35 min ago
Photo by Amelia Holowaty Krales / The Verge

India has banned e-cigarettes as US health inspectors investigate a series of deaths linked to vaping. Reuters reports that an executive order prohibits selling, producing, importing, or advertising e-cigarettes. First offenders could receive up to one year in prison and a 100,000 rupee ($1,400) fine; later violations could cost up to three years and 500,000 rupees. The ban doesn’t apply to actually using e-cigarettes — but it means users can’t legally buy refills for their vapes.

Traditional cigarettes are legal in India, although they’re highly taxed. E-cigarettes, however, have held a less certain position. The government has been weighing a ban for years, despite concerns over the legality of stopping imports, and Reuters reported on...

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OnePlus 7T Pro render shows familiar design with a new camera sensor

Wed, 09/18/2019 - 23:35
Image: @Onleaks / iGeeksBlog

The OnePlus 7T Pro isn’t expected to come to the United States, as it doesn’t look like that much of an upgrade over the impressive 7 Pro from earlier this year. But a new press render of the phone from @Onleaks and iGeeksBlog indicates that OnePlus is adding a new sensor to the side of the triple-camera system. It’s likely a time-of-flight sensor, which is something that many phone makers are experimenting with lately.

Otherwise, the 7T Pro looks identical to the 7 Pro, with the same pop-up camera, tiny bezels, and even down to the blue finish. 9to5Google notes the shade is a little lighter than the 7 Pro, but that might just be the angle of this specific image. Just yesterday, OnePlus itself offered a first glimpse of the standard...

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Borderlands 3’s boring, evil YouTubers are a huge missed opportunity

Wed, 09/18/2019 - 22:15

One of the optional missions in Borderlands 3, a cooperative sci-fi shooter that released last week, is to bring a minor character some coffee. The task seems easy enough: go to a cafe, fix a machine, and find a container to hold the brew. Choose to accept it, however, and you’ll meet resistance every step of the way. A dozen people will die in a pitched battle over a single coffee cup in a corporate office. And absolutely nobody will find this strange. It’s morbid, silly, and a good example of Borderlands’ over-the-top parody.

Borderlands launched in 2009, and it’s known for its mashup of post-apocalyptic tropes, space opera, and dark humor. Borderlands 3 repeats a now-familiar formula with mixed success. If you like the games, it’s a...

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I got a contact high just reading this bananas profile of WeWork’s founder

Wed, 09/18/2019 - 22:01
Photo by Jackal Pan / Visual China Group via Getty Images

The Verge’s newsroom lights up every time a new WeWork story hits because it’s legitimately one of the wildest companies we’ve ever seen — and we’ve seen some wild ones. (We once went deep covering a company that made a $700 Wi-Fi-connected juicer, which now seems infinitely quaint by comparison.) For one of the best stories you’ll read all year, you must visit The Wall Street Journal today, where Eliot Brown published a captivating profile of Adam Neumann, the CEO and founder of The We Company.

The world has been learning a lot about Neumann’s extraordinary family antics since his failed attempt to IPO for $40 billion. As my colleague Liz Lopatto wrote last month, WeWork is less of a tech company and more of a soap opera. But thanks to...

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Medium’s Pocket-like bookmarking feature is live, but pretty limited right now

Wed, 09/18/2019 - 21:53
Image: Medium

Medium’s “Save to Medium” bookmarking feature is now live, letting you save articles from across the web to a single interface you can read whenever you want, roughly two weeks after app sleuth Jane Manchun Wong discovered the experimental Pocket- and Instapaper-like feature earlier this month. But in my brief testing this morning, it feels more limited than those dedicated read-it-later services, and frankly, doesn’t seem that useful to me at all.

Introducing 'Save to Medium,' a new feature that lets you save stories from any URL, from any device, and view it in the Medium app https://t.co/I8jru1LOAN pic.twitter.com/9IDnkfj2jQ

— Medium (@Medium) September 18, 2019

Starting off on a practical note, you can only save articles using a C...

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Categories: Latest IT news

Instagram will restrict who can see posts about cosmetic procedures, weight loss products

Wed, 09/18/2019 - 21:39

Instagram will restrict people under the age of 18 from seeing posts that promote weight loss products or types of cosmetic surgery as part of a new policy that targets a rapidly growing and controversial sect of influencer marketing.

In some cases, posts may be removed entirely, too. Instagram will apply the age restriction in cases where posts include an incentive to buy or are accompanied by a price for a product. The company will remove posts entirely if it “makes a miraculous claim about certain diet or weight loss products, and is linked to a commercial offer such as a discount code.”

Instagram’s advertising guidelines and policies never allowed for the promotion of these products, according to a statement from the company, but...

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Trump moves to kill California’s clean car standards

Wed, 09/18/2019 - 20:07
Photo by Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images

President Trump announced Wednesday that his administration will try to revoke California’s authority to set its own vehicle emissions standards. The news comes just a few weeks after four automakers (Volkswagen, Ford, BMW, and Honda) announced a deal with California that would see them make their new car fleets cleaner year over year, which was viewed as a side-step of the Trump administration’s ongoing attempt to roll back an Obama-era rule regarding vehicle pollution regulations.

This new fight centers around a Clean Air Act waiver granted to California in the 1970s that lets the state set separate standards from the federal regulations. California was granted the waiver because, at the time that the Clean Air Act was being...

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The first iPhone 11 Pro Max teardown confirms a 25 percent bigger battery

Wed, 09/18/2019 - 19:40
Image: DChannel (YouTube)

The first teardown of the iPhone 11 Pro Max is officially out, courtesy of DChannel on YouTube, and it reveals the inner workings of the newest extra-large iPhone. The most interesting part: the 11 Pro Max has a 15.04 watt-hour battery, nearly 25 percent larger than the iPhone XS Max’s 12.06 watt-hour cells — suggesting the size of the battery, and not any software optimization, is likely the main reason for the new device’s greatly improved battery life.

Apple claims the iPhone 11 Pro Max will get five hours more battery life than the iPhone XS Max, and while it’s difficult to exactly replicate Apple’s internal battery tests, Verge editor-in-chief Nilay Patel found his iPhone 11 Pro Max review unit lasted for 12 to 14 hours on a single...

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Amazon will soon let you make campaign contributions through your Alexa device

Wed, 09/18/2019 - 19:24
Photo by Dan Seifert / The Verge

On Thursday, you’ll be able to make campaign donations to 2020 presidential candidates through your Amazon Alexa devices — or at least to those candidates whom Amazon deems eligible to set up an account.

If a campaign chooses to sign up for Alexa donations, you’ll be able to donate to it by merely saying, “Alexa, I want to make a political contribution,” or “Alexa, donate [amount] to [candidate name].” All donations will be processed through Amazon Pay, and users will receive email receipts for their contributions as well.

“Alexa, I want to make a political contribution”

Strangely, the feature is only available to 2020 presidential candidates Amazon defines as “principal campaign committees.” It’s not apparent who Amazon considers...

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NBCUniversal’s new streaming service could spell trouble for Hulu

Wed, 09/18/2019 - 18:35

On Tuesday, NBCUniversal announced a name and initial launch plans for its streaming service, Peacock. Preparing to launch with a couple of exclusive titles, including The Office and Parks and Recreation, Peacock is the latest entry in the streaming wars between some of the biggest names in entertainment, including WarnerMedia, Disney, Amazon, and Apple.

The platform’s main draw is its back catalog. It will launch with dozens of adored shows from the ‘90s and early ‘00s, including 30 Rock, House, and Keeping Up with the Kardashians. If you’re streaming those shows today, you’re probably doing it on Hulu. While some of them will stay there, others will end up exclusively on Peacock. WarnerMedia and Disney will also be taking back some of...

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Facebook to use bodycam footage from law enforcement to train its video takedown algorithms

Wed, 09/18/2019 - 18:30
Illustration by Alex Castro / Th

Facebook has partnered with law enforcement in the UK to obtain footage to train its automated content moderation tools. Starting in October, the UK’s Metropolitan Police Service will provide bodycam footage taken during its firearms training exercises, which Facebook will use to train its video recognition AI. The aim is to automatically identify footage of an attack, remove it, and notify the police. Facebook is currently exploring similar partnerships with law enforcement agencies in the US, according to the Financial Times.

The new initiative comes in the wake of Facebook’s inability to prevent a mass shooting from being live-streamed on its platform. Facebook said that the Christchurch shooting was viewed 200 times during its live...

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Apple is trying to trademark ‘Slofie’

Wed, 09/18/2019 - 18:00
Image: Apple

It seemed like “slofies” could have been a one-off joke when Apple mentioned them during its iPhone event last week, but the company is clearly pleased with the made-up term. On Friday, Apple applied for a US trademark on “Slofie,” potentially giving the company control over the word’s usage.

Slofies are Apple’s name for slow-motion selfies, a feature that’s new to the iPhone 11 models. The phones’ front camera can now record video at 120 frames per second, which when slowed down, results in a crisp slow-motion effect. The results are neat, though I’m not convinced they’ll turn into the Animoji-like phenomenon Apple may be hoping for.

Slofie, not slofi, slowfie, or slowfi

Apple is applying for a trademark on slofies in connection with...

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A new Netflix docuseries heads inside Bill Gates’ brain, but it keeps getting sidetracked

Wed, 09/18/2019 - 17:32
Photo by Saeed Adyani / Netflix

Software magnate Bill Gates is one of the most famous people in the world, but the public barely knows him. Gates has been a household name for decades for two reasons: he was the face of Microsoft during an era when the company’s products became ubiquitous, and, perhaps more notably, he’s very, very rich. Yet, he’s never been the kind of celebrity whose personal life and political opinions are splashed across the tabloids and social media. And unlike the late Steve Jobs — his contemporary and occasional rival — Gates is rarely discussed in terms of some ineffable mystique.

The title of Davis Guggenheim’s three-part Netflix documentary Inside Bill’s Brain: Decoding Bill Gates (which debuts on Friday, September 20th) speaks to its...

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