Nearly one million UK rural dwellers have pathetic broadband connections

Nearly one million UK rural dwellers have pathetic broadband connections

Nearly one million UK rural dwellers have pathetic broadband connections

Almost 1.4 million homes and businesses in the UK still don’t have a “decent” broadband connection, according to communications watchdog Ofcom—which found that 920,000 Brits stuck in the slow lane reside in the countryside.

The regulator’s annual figures are moving in the right direction, however. The number of properties in Blighty that suffer from poor broadband connections has fallen by one million in the past year.

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UK becomes first country to give go ahead to three-parent babies

UK becomes first country to give go ahead to three-parent babies

UK becomes first country to give go ahead to three-parent babies

The UK today became the first country to formally allow children to be genetically altered to ensure they do not inherit disorders caused by mutations in mitochondria – a momentous decision that could eventually lead to other kinds of reproductive genetic engineering.

The country’s Human Fertilisation and Embryo Authority has given a cautious go-ahead to the use of mitochondrial replacement therapy to prevent mitochondrial disorders, which can be fatal. Clinics that wish to carry out the procedure now have to convince the HFEA that they are competent. After that, the HFEA will approve applications on a case by case basis.

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Amazon begins Prime Air drone delivery trial in the UK

Amazon begins Prime Air drone delivery trial in the UK

Amazon begins Prime Air drone delivery trial in the UK

Amazon has begun a commercial trial of its Prime Air autonomous drone delivery service, beginning with a single fulfilment centre in Cambridge, England. The first delivery, which took place on December 7, took just 13 minutes from the customer placing an order. There’s a promotional video of the first Prime Air delivery embedded below.

To begin with, just two Amazon customers have been invited into the Prime Air trial, and they both live near the fulfilment centre. The customers can request drone delivery seven days a week, but only during daylight hours, and the weather has to be within certain parameters. The first Prime Air delivery, in case you were wondering, was an Amazon Fire TV stick and a bag of popcorn.

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Cortana arrives in the UK on Android and iOS with an overhauled design

Cortana arrives in the UK on Android and iOS with an overhauled design

Cortana arrives in the UK on Android and iOS with an overhauled design

Microsoft is finally bringing Cortana to Android and iOS devices in the UK, complete with an overhauled look and feel. Cortana will be available on Android today in the UK, and iOS “in a few weeks.” The new design includes quick actions like new reminders or weather information straight on the landing page of Cortana for iOS and Android, so you don’t have to use voice all the time.

Microsoft is also adding in full-page answers, and making the app quicker to use. The Cortana app for Android is updated and available today in the Google Play Store, and the iOS update is expected to hit the App Store in a few weeks.

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Samsung Pay UK release postponed until 2017—knotty bank talks fingered

Samsung Pay UK release postponed until 2017—knotty bank talks fingered

Samsung Pay UK release postponed until 2017—knotty bank talks fingered

Samsung Pay’s UK release has been delayed until 2017 amid reports that it’s tied up in negotiations with banks.

The company’s mobile payment alternative service, which allows people to use their phones and smartwatches to make small contactless purchases in shops much like Apple Pay and Google’s Android Pay, has been available in the USA and South Korea since 2015. Since then, it has arrived in nine other countries, including China, Russia, Spain, Brazil, Australia, and Thailand.

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BLU Vivo 6 starts selling in the UK; special Black Friday deal available today only

BLU Vivo 6 starts selling in the UK; special Black Friday deal available today only

BLU Vivo 6 starts selling in the UK; special Black Friday deal available today only

BLU, the smartphone manufacturer based in sunny Miami, announced the Vivo 6 last month. A great looking unibody device made from aircraft grade aluminium.

Starting today, the company’s latest device is available in the UK. BLU is selling it unlocked through Amazon for £239.99. However, if you hurry up and buy the device today, you’ll get quite a substantial discount. Keeping up with the Black Friday spirit, the Vivo 6 is featured as a Deal of the Day at Amazon and can be yours for £184.99. That’s £55 off its regular price, which will kick in tomorrow — November 26.

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IBM to invest heavily in UK data centres

IBM to invest heavily in UK data centres

IBM to invest heavily in UK data centres

Demand for cloud services is undiminished in the public and corporate sectors despite the looming spectre of Brexit, IBM has said, while  confirming plans to treble the number of data centres it operates in Britain.

It said that IBM’s UK data centres would increase from two to six with the first of the new facilities expected to open in Fareham in December this year.

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Deal: Amazon Prime one-year subscription, £59 for the next three days (UK)

Deal: Amazon Prime one-year subscription, £59 for the next three days (UK)

Deal: Amazon Prime one-year subscription, £59 for the next three days (UK)

Sign up for Amazon Prime in the UK before Friday and you’ll receive a full year’s subscription for £59 instead of the normal £79 asking price. The promotion, which gives access to Amazon’s Prime music, Prime delivery and Prime video services for just £4.92 per-month, is available to new Amazon Prime members only.

The list of benefits for Prime members includes:

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Carphone Warehouse offers free VR headset with pay-monthly smartphone purchases (UK)

Carphone Warehouse offers free VR headset with pay-monthly smartphone purchases (UK)

Carphone Warehouse offers free VR headset with pay-monthly smartphone purchases (UK)

Thanks to a holiday offer from the Carphone Warehouse, any pay monthly smartphone purchase will now include a free VR headset.

The Goji headset, manufactured by the Carphone Warehouse, has a retail price of £24.99 and is compatible with smartphone screen sizes from 3.5 to 6.0-inches. It comes with a one-year warranty and magnetic button similar to what appears on Google Cardboard.

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Amazon’s new music streaming service arrives in the UK with an Echo hook

Amazon's new music streaming service arrives in the UK with an Echo hook

Amazon’s new music streaming service arrives in the UK with an Echo hook

Amazon is launching its on-demand music streaming service, Amazon Unlimited Music, in the UK. The service was unveiled in the US last month, and offers 40 million tracks, Android and iOS mobile apps, and both handpicked and algorithmically generated playlists. But, it’s not to be confused with Prime Music — a comparatively limited music streaming service that Amazon bundles in for free with a Prime yearly subscription.

In the UK, Amazon Unlimited Music will cost £9.99 a month for non-Prime members or £7.99 a month / £79 a year (that’s £6.58 a month) for those that are subscribed to Prime. (Spotify, by comparison, charges £9.99 a month in the UK.) There’s also a deal where you can get access to Unlimited Music on just a single Echo or Echo Dot for £3.99 a month. To be clear, that means you can’t use the service on phones, tablets, or PCs, but you get the same music catalog from your Echo speaker at a cheaper monthly cost.

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