AT&T Outage Takes Down 911 Emergency Lines across the US

Millions of AT&T customers were left without 911 service for several hours last night. The outage appeared to have affected wireless customers across the country, with reports that customers were unable to reach emergency services in New York, Los Angeles, Washington D.C., Chicago, Miami, San Francisco and Seattle, among other areas.

Although service was restored late last night, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has promised an investigation into the outage, according to a tweet sent by FCC Chairman Ajit Pai shortly after the outage began.

No Known Cause

So far, the company has not made any statement regarding the cause of the outage, other than to announce that it has been corrected. With potentially millions of people unable to reach emergency services, police and public safety officials in several cities tweeted alternate phone numbers AT&T customers could use to contact authorities in case of emergencies.

“The FCC’s public safety professionals are on the case,” Lisa Fowlkes, acting head of the Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau, said today in a statement. “Access to 911 emergency services is essential for all Americans, especially the most vulnerable. We will fully investigate this outage and determine the root cause and its impact.”

The outage is particularly significant given AT&T’s position in the mobile phone market. The company is the second-largest wireless carrier in the country, with around 135 million subscribers.

Bad Timing

Yesterday’s service interruption also comes at a particularly difficult time for AT&T. Competition in the wireless market has been heating up this year, with all the major carriers slashing rates and offering other incentives to convince customers to switch service providers.

Claims about superior service quality have also been major selling points for carriers. AT&T competitors, such as Verizon and T-Mobile, may seek to use last night’s outage to argue that they offer more reliable service….
Source: Mobile Tech Today

Sprint Rolls Out Gigabit LTE In New Orleans

Sprint today said it has debuted gigabit-class LTE in New Orleans. The gigabit LTE requires 3-channel carrier aggregation using 60 MHz of Sprint’s 2.5 GHz spectrum (Band 41) with 4×4 MIMO and 256 QAM modulation. This is what delivers Category 16 LTE download speeds via TDD-LTE. Sprint showcased the technology in New Orleans on an unannounced flagship smartphone from Motorola that uses the Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 processor and Snapdragon X16 modem. Sprint plans to rely on its 2.5 GHz spectrum to add capacity and speed to its network around the country. The rollout of gigabit class LTE goes further than what Sprint’s LTE Plus service already delivers (which reaches 100Mbps downloads). The gigabit LTE requires a series of incremental upgrades, says Sprint, that rely on the Cat 16 modem, 4×4 MIMO and 256 QAM. Sprint later plans to use massive MIMO and HPUE to boost performance at the cell edge, eventually pushing speeds beyond 1 Gbps. Sprint and Motorola did not say when the yet-to-be-named gigabit class LTE handset will be made available to consumers. The Snapdragon 835 processor and X16 modem aren’t expected to be available in volume until April.

Source: Phone Scoop – Latest News

ThruNite Ti3 Keychain Torch – Review

Somehow, for some odd reason, I appear to have gained a reputation for reviewing random electronic gadgets. Today I present to you …..a torch.

ThruNite Ti3 Keychain Torch   Review

Call is the flashlight, call it a torch, it is simply a small battery-powered LED light which you can carry around on your keys. Without the battery it weighs just 12 grams and operates with a simple twist of the top section. To begin with you need a single AAA-sized battery. This is not supplied, but they are extremely easy to find and available in supermarkets and various other shops.

ThruNite Ti3 Keychain Torch   Review

I ventured into my cupboard of random semi-flat batteries and locate it myself . Although the battery in question has a questionable amount of power left, it produced a very bright light. You basically twist the top section continually until it comes off, pop the battery in, then screw it back on. As you do, it’ll light up on the last couple of turns. To turn off, you simply unscrew it a tiny bit. Repeating this process will switch between 4 brightness modes, so you don’t always have to have it on “full whack” of 130 lumens.

Due to the fact that this is an LED torch and not an old-school bulb, you won’t need to worry about replacing the bulb any time soon. ThruNite tell me that it has a lifespan of over 20 years.

It’s made from “aircraft quality aluminium” and can survive drops of up to 1 metre. It’s waterproof too, with an anodized anti-abrasive finish.

ThruNite Ti3 Keychain Torch   Review

Although this isn’t quite going to compete with larger more powerful torches it definitely gives you enough light to show you the way around local streets when you are walking your dog. You can also use it as an emergency torchlight if you have broken down etc. You can clip it onto your keys or into a pocket with the small clip.

Here’s a few shots of me using it in the dark…

ThruNite Ti3 Keychain Torch   Review

ThruNite Ti3 Keychain Torch   Review

If you want one, you can head to their website, where it’s $19.95. I’ve also spotted it on Amazon and, although it is £13.95, this really is a top-quality bit of kit. You’ll definitely not need to get another one any time soon. It’s a high quality product which, considering it’s powered by a single AAA battery, offers a long-lasting light and excellent build quality.

The post ThruNite Ti3 Keychain Torch – Review is original content from Coolsmartphone. If you see it on another news website, please let us know.


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  • Julian Assange: We'll Work with Tech Firms To Defeat CIA Hacking

    WikiLeaks will work with technology companies to help defend them against the Central Intelligence Agency’s hacking tools, founder Julian Assange said Thursday, an approach which sets up a potential conflict between Silicon Valley firms eager to protect their products and an agency stung by the radical transparency group’s disclosures.

    In an online press conference, Assange acknowledged that some companies had asked for more details about the CIA cyberespionage toolkit whose existence he purportedly revealed in a massive leak published Tuesday.

    “We have decided to work with them, to give them some exclusive access to some of the technical details we have, so that fixes can be pushed out,” Assange said. Once tech firms had patched their products, he said, he would release the full data of the hacking tools to the public.

    The CIA has so far declined to comment directly on the authenticity of the leak, but in a statement issued Wednesday it suggested that the release had been damaging by equipping adversaries “with tools and information to do us harm.”

    Assange began his online press conference with a dig at the agency for losing control of its cyberespionage arsenal, saying that all the data had been kept in one place.

    “This is a historic act of devastating incompetence,” he said, adding that, “WikiLeaks discovered the material as a result of it being passed around.”

    Assange said the technology was nearly impossible to keep under wraps — or under control.

    “There’s absolutely nothing to stop a random CIA officer” or even a contractor from using the technology, Assange said. “The technology is designed to be unaccountable, untraceable; it’s designed to remove traces of its activity.”
    Source: Mobile Tech Today

    Get a proper free gift with any Galaxy S7 or S7 edge purchase on Tesco Mobile

    Get a proper free gift with any Galaxy S7 or S7 edge purchase on Tesco Mobile
    O2 MVNO, Tesco Mobile, is offering up a deal for customers buying the Samsung S7 or S7 Edge handset on both pay monthly and pay as you go. Right now, and until March 26th, you can get free gifts worth up to £349.

    Tesco offers up the Samsung S7 £31.50 per month (2GB data, 1000 minutes of calls and 5000 texts) and the Samsung S7 Edge from just £35 per month for the same deal.

    Get a proper free gift with any Galaxy S7 or S7 edge purchase on Tesco Mobile

    If you get yourself one then you can choose from a range of cool gifts, including the Samsung Gear 360 that we looked at last year. In addition, there’s the Samsung Gear Fit 2 or a pair of Samsung Icon X Bluetooth Headphones.

    New customers will have until May 24th to redeem a gift. You’ll just need to keep your proof of purchase and head to the Samsung Promo website to claim it.

    For more info on the phones and the other plans that Tesco offer, head to the Tesco Mobile website.

    More details below…

    Tesco Mobile gives customers free top tech gifts with purchase of Samsung S7 or S7 Edge handset

    Network partners with Samsung to offer customers free gifts worth up to a whopping £349

    Tesco Mobile is continuing to offer even more value in 2017 with a fantastic promotion, offering a choice of free top of the range Samsung gifts to its customers with the purchase of a Samsung S7 or S7 Edge handset, on both pay as you go and pay monthly contracts which start from just £31.50 per month.

    From 27th February 2017, Tesco Mobile is offering even more value on the market-leading Samsung S7 and S7 Edge with their best ever deals, in partnership with Samsung. Customers can choose from a range of a free gifts when purchasing either handset on a range of contracts, with the Samsung S7 starting from £31.50 per month and the Samsung S7 Edge from just £35 per month.

    The award-winning network is continuing to help families cover everyone’s tech needs, with the top Samsung freebies on offer suited to the whole family. When buying a qualifying handset, customers are able to choose from a range of gifts worth up to a whopping £349:

    · Budding photographers can choose the Samsung Gear 360 to create VR photos and videos
    · Fitness fanatics can track their health stats even more precisely, by choosing the Samsung Gear Fit 2
    · Music lovers can enjoy tunes at top of the range quality, by choosing the stylish Samsung Icon X Bluetooth Headphones

    The offer ends on 26th March 2017, and customers have until 24th May to redeem their free gift. To do so, customers can head to and refer to their printed receipt or proof of purchase.

    The post Get a proper free gift with any Galaxy S7 or S7 edge purchase on Tesco Mobile is original content from Coolsmartphone. If you see it on another news website, please let us know.


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  • Samsung Exec Denies All Charges

    Jay Y. Lee, the chief of Samsung, pled not guilty in court today. Lee is charged with bribery and embezzlement in a case that has also ensnared South Korea President Park Geun-hye. Lee’s lawyers claim the prosecution’s case is built on conversations and other evidence that was not witnessed first hand. “It is unclear what kind of order Lee Jae-yong is supposed to have given” regarding the bribes, said Lee’s lawyer, Song Wu-cheol. Samsung itself and other executives caught up in the case also denied any wrongdoing. The office for the special prosecutor believes Lee arranged for about $36 million in bribes to be paid to the office of President Park to facilitate certain low-level mergers. Park herself was impeached in December and has no governmental powers pending a review of the case by Korea’s Constitutional Court. The prosecutors believe the case against Lee, which they are calling the “trial of the century,” will be wrapped up by the end of May.

    Source: Phone Scoop – Latest News

    Google's Allo Messaging App Finds Its Way to Android Auto

    Users of Google’s Allo mobile messaging application can now use the service from the comfort of their car. The latest update, available in the Google Play Store, brings support for Android Auto to Allo, which joins several other messaging services that are already accessible when in drive mode. Google says the latest update also adds animated emoji. Allo, which integrates the Google Assistant and yet doesn’t support SMS, is free to download from Google’s app store.

    Source: Phone Scoop – Latest News

    In U-Turn, Uber Will Stop Using Greyball To Evade Law Enforcement

    Uber will stop using its Greyball tool to evade law enforcement efforts, the ride-hail company announced Wednesday, just days after it defended the controversial program as necessary to protect its drivers from harm.

    “We have started a review of the different ways this technology has been used to date,” Uber’s chief security officer Joe Sullivan wrote in a blog post. “In addition, we are expressly prohibiting its use to target action by local regulators going forward.”

    Uber’s backtracking comes less than a week after the New York Times revealed that the company had been serving up an alternative (and non-functioning) version of its app to public officials in cities where its service violated regulations. It also comes shortly after the company reversed course on applying for a permit to test self-driving cars in California.

    The “Greyball” program used geolocation data, credit card information, social media accounts, and other data to profile app users they believed to be involved in sting operations. It was used in Boston, Las Vegas, Philadelphia, Portland, and Oregon, as well as France, Australia, China, South Korea and Italy.

    The systematic effort to evade law enforcement raised questions about the legality and ethics of a company already under fire from a series of scandals.

    In recent weeks, Uber has faced significant backlash over allegations of sexual harassment and gender discrimination, a viral video of CEO Travis Kalanick arguing with an Uber driver who complained of lowered fares, and the company’s apparent non-participation in a New York City taxi strike in protest of Donald Trump’s travel ban for seven Muslim-majority countries.

    The $70bn behemoth is also facing a lawsuit from Waymo, the self-driving car company spun-off from Google, alleging that Uber orchestrated the “calculated theft” of secret technology.

    Widespread criticism — and a viral #DeleteUber social media campaign — prompted rapid backtracking from the…
    Source: Mobile Tech Today

    How Can I Stop My Laptop and TV from Spying On Me?

    The publication by WikiLeaks of documents it says are from the CIA’s secret hacking program describe tools that can turn a world of increasingly networked, camera- and microphone-equipped devices into eavesdroppers.

    Smart televisions and automobiles now have on-board computers and microphones, joining the ubiquitous smartphones, laptops and tablets that have had microphones and cameras as standard equipment for a decade. That the CIA has created tools to turn them into listening posts surprises no one in the security community.

    Q: How Worried Should Consumers Be Who Have Surrounded Themselves with These Devices?

    A: Importantly, the intrusion tools highlighted by the leak do not appear to be instruments of mass surveillance. So, it’s not as if everyone’s TV or high-tech vehicle is at risk.

    “It’s unsurprising, and also somewhat reassuring, that these are tools that appear to be targeted at specific people’s (devices) by compromising the software on them — as opposed to tools that decrypt the encrypted traffic over the internet,” said Matt Blaze, University of Pennsylvania computer scientist.

    The exploits appear to emphasize targeted attacks, such as collecting keystrokes or silently activating a Samsung TV’s microphone while the set is turned off. In fact, many of the intrusion tools described in the documents are for delivery via “removable device.”

    Q: Once Devices Are Compromised They Need To Be Internet-Connected in Order To Share Collected Intelligence with Spies. What Can Be Done To Stop That?

    A: Not much if you don’t want to sacrifice the benefits of the device.

    “Anything that is voice-activated or that has voice- and internet-connected functionality is susceptible to these types of attacks,” said Robert M. Lee, a former U.S. cyberwar operations officer and CEO of the cybersecurity company Dragos.

    That includes smart TVs and voice-controlled information devices like the Amazon Echo, which can read news, play music, close the garage door and turn up…
    Source: Mobile Tech Today