Bitcoin's wild 2017 ride continues with a Christmas Day rebound after a record slide

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Slow your roll, bitcoin.

The finicky cryptocurrency has skyrocketed in overall value throughout 2017, but its bumpy December continued in the run-up to Christmas. After posting an all-time high of $19,796 per bitcoin on Dec. 17, the price fell to $11,590 on Dec. 22, according to Coinbase data).

It was the steepest decline of the year, losing more than 40 percent of its peak value to date — a milestone reached just days earlier. The price has been creeping back up since then, and it continues to hover at around $14,000 as of Christmas Day, Dec. 25. Read more…

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LG continues to lose money selling smartphones

LG has reported its third quarter earnings, and for the three month period that covers July through September, the mobile division took a loss of $331.17 million. With red ink staring it in the face, the manufacturer focused on the 8% gain year-over-year in mobile revenue, and the 4% revenue gain from this year’s second quarter. The loss was actually 13% smaller than last year’s red ink. In South Korea, third quarter smartphone shipments were up 44% from the 2016 total. In the states, shipments of intelligent handsets rose 9% year-over-year.

Make no mistake about it though; times are tough …

Once you enable audio on Instagram, sound now continues until you close the app

A change to Instagram rolled out to the app recently and this is how it works. When you open the picture and video sharing app, videos will autoplay with the sound off. But when you tap on the screen to turn the volume on one video on, all other videos will autoplay with the sound on for the remainder of your Instagram session. We’d say that makes common sense. And if you tap on the screen again turning the audio off on the current video, all of the subsequent videos will go silent. If you disable the sound on your Instagram videos, they will remain off when you finish your session and start up …

The year of Wonder Woman continues with the excellent 'Professor Marston'

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Can Wonder Woman’s year get any better? Turns out, yes. 

A few months after her first big screen outing dominated the box office, her real-life origin story is coming to theaters in the form of a biopic, Professor Marston and the Wonder Women. And like Wonder Woman before it, Professor Marston feels both comfortingly familiar and quietly groundbreaking. 

Dr. William Moulton Marston is typically credited as the creator of Wonder Woman. But like last year’s Hidden Figures, Professor Marston gives the lie to the assumption that creative brilliance is the sole province of tortured and solitary assholes. Wonder Woman, in this telling, is borne of the romance and collaboration between three people: Bill Marston, Elizabeth Marston, and Olive Byrne. Read more…

More about Movies, Wonder Woman, Professor Marston And The Wonder Women, Angela Robinson, and Rebecca Hall

Apple threatens to stop buying Western Digital parts if it continues with Toshiba deal

Back on the last day of August, we told you that Apple was part of a group seeking to buy Toshiba’s memory chip business. But it appears that a rival consortium, led by Western Digital, could be signing a deal with Toshiba as soon as Wednesday. That group is offering $17-18 billion USD. Apple, though, is concerned that a Western Digital purchase of Toshiba’s chip business would eliminate a rival flash memory chip producer that it could use as a stalking horse in order to get better pricing for the component that Apple uses on the iPhone.

As a result, Apple is threatening to stop buying Western …

Sprint continues to surge; carrier finishes second to Verizon in J.D. Power survey

The nation’s fourth largest carrier, Sprint, appears to be in the middle of a turnaround which carried over with the results of the latest J.D. Power Network Quality Performance survey. Out of the six different U.S. regions that the survey measured, Sprint was second or tied for second in five of them. That is a huge turnaround from three-years ago when Sprint finished dead last by a wide margin in the same survey.

The survey also found that customers opting to sign up for unlimited data plans are more likely to be satisfied with their network. Sprint says that this is good news for them …

Android Nougat update for Sony Xperia XA and XA Ultra continues after initial hold-up

Last week, Sony pulled the update by which the Xperia XA and XA Ultra were supposed to get upgraded to Android Nougat due to “minor performance inconsistencies related to the over-the-air delivery system”, promising that delay would be short. Today, we’re happy to report that these inconsistencies have been sorted out by the manufacturer and that the update is live once more. 

It’s interesting to note that the build number for the software is different to the patch that was live one week ago. If you happen to own a Xperia XA …

Galaxy S8 continues to break records in Korea, sales exceed 1.3 million

Samsung has managed to sell over 1.3 million units of its 2017 flagship duo on home ground. Media outlet The Investor reports that the Galaxy S8 and S8+ have broken all sales records in South Korea.

It is estimated that between 11,000 to 12,000 units of the two models are sold on a daily basis – a feat that no other high-end handset has managed to achieve in the East Asian country. The strong results have also caused the share price of Samsung Electronics to hit an all-time high of $2,123 on Monday. 
While nobody …

Touch ID on the back of Apple iPhone 8? The speculation continues

When the Samsung Galaxy S8 and Samsung Galaxy S8+ were launched with the fingerprint scanner right next to the rear-facing camera, some consumers were disappointed. After all, there was talk that Samsung would be embedding the fingerprint reader underneath the display. Unfortunately, the technology could not be worked out for this to take place. And when it comes to the 10th anniversary edition of the iPhone, as Yogi Berra once said, it’s deja vu all over again.

Originally, the premium version of this year’s iPhone, dubbed the Apple iPhone 8, was also expected to have Touch ID embedded under …

Apple continues making gains over Android in the U.S., but drops to lowest share in China

Apple’s iOS devices continue making gains over Android in the United States, and while Android still has a larger market share of nearly 55.9%, Apple is closing the gap and has recently grown its market share to 42%, according to stats by Kantar World Panel research. These are stats covering the three month period ending in February 2017, comparing sales to the same period last yaer.
But that staggering growth in the United States happens on the background of some big declines in other huge markets: in China, for instance, iOS lost 8.9 …