New corporate tax measures aimed at preventing multinational companies making profits in the UK and then shifting them overseas where they incur lower taxes could potentially impact a number of tech companies, including Apple, Google and Amazon.
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Amazon today announced a new hardware product called Echo. It’s essentially a speaker unit dedicated to being a voice-control system. It kind of sounds like Siri but in a speaker for a single room instead of in your iPhone, iPad, or Apple Watch.
You can set alarms, control music, ask about the weather, search the web, ask questions, and access local news. It streams content via Bluetooth and WiFi, and connects to the Fire Phone (if you have one, lol), iOS via the browser, Android, and desktop computers via the web. Instead of “Hey Siri,” you say “Alexa” to start speaking the device. You’ll need a Fire OS/Android device to take full advantage, but music should work fine via iOS.
The whole concept is very futuristic, and it’s unclear how beneficial this will be to people with voice-controlled phones. But, hey, this comes from the developers of a faux-3D phone and delivery drones, so this is not completely out of left field. The Echo is $99 for Amazon Prime users, $199 for everyone else, and (for some reason) you need an invitation to receive the honor to buy one of these untested things.
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November 5, 2014
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Amazon just upped the Cloud Photo storage ante with free unlimited Cloud storage for Photos for its Prime customers. The Amazon Photo service, which has apps for iOS or Android and is native to Amazon’s Fire products including its recently announced Fire stick, will no longer be capped for Prime customers.
Introducing Prime Photos. Your cherished memories are safe in Amazon Cloud Drive and accessible anywhere you are. It’s like having a virtual album of every one of your photos that you can access at any time, no matter which device you use.
According to TechCrunch, a Mac app is in the works but for now the web uploader works as well.
Prime is Amazon’s all-in-one premium service which allows free streaming music, 500,000 free eBooks, free Netflix-like TV service, free 2 day shipping on goods and services bought at Amazon. It is $99/year but grabbing a 30-day free trial 1 month before the holiday shopping season starts isn’t a bad idea. Folks who don’t want to fork out the $99 can get a 5 GB of free storage on Amazon Cloud Drive which is the equivalent to up to 2,000 photos. expand full story
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Update: A spokesperson for Amazon confirmed Amazon Rewards Visa cards now support Apple Pay: “Amazon Rewards Visa Cardholders can now pay with Apple Pay. The website (https://www.chasedigitalpayments.com/) has been updated and cardholders can now start provisioning their cards.”
Just two days after Amazon said it was working to enable its Rewards Visa card in Apple Pay, the company has made good on its promise. Reddit users are reporting success in adding the card, and TechCrunch posted the above photo of a card loaded into the app … expand full story
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We’re 2 short weeks away from Apple’s iPhone 6 announcement and that of course means it is almost time to trade in your current but now outdated tiny iPhone 3/4/5/s/c. Giving your non-sapphire 4-incher to a friend or relative? That’s nice of you but for those in the US who prefer cold hard cash, there are lots of great options out there.
In years past, we’ve put together roundups (2013, 2012) that include 12 different options but things change pretty quickly so we wait right until launch week to update ours. This year, Statista compared the major US trade in options out there two weeks ahead of time to find the best pricing.
The TL;DR is that Amazon gives you the most credit for an iPhone across all carriers and models and we’ve had good success here using Amazon. Additionally, Amazon credit for most of us is almost as good as cash (compared to say Best Buy where we might not be making another electronics purchase in the near future). That said, Amazon doesn’t offer the iPhone directly as a purchase and many folks will prefer to use the credit to directly buy their next iPhone.
As for cash money options, Glyde and NextWorth seem to be the winners with Gazelle bringing up the rear in most cases (Gazelle is offering a price lock which might be driving down their current offer).
Stay tuned for our launch day guide and see results for all carriers as of yesterday below: expand full story
August 21, 2014
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Small businesses looking to take occasional card payments without paying monthly fees now have a third option as Amazon has launched Local Register to compete with Square and PayPal Here – as we predicted last month. The $10 card-reader is compatible with any iPhone from the iPhone 4 onward, as well as any iPad or iPad mini.
Amazon is undercutting both competitor services with a flat fee of 2.5 percent per transaction (vs 2.7 percent for PayPal Here and 2.75 percent for Square). Not enough? Amazon is sweetening the deal with a special introductory rate of 1.75 percent until the end of 2015, and will also credit the $10 cost of the cardreader in full against transaction fees … expand full story