- Tesla’s secret breakthrough home battery will be announced at the end of April (BGR)
The battery has apparently been in testing in 230 houses in California, with 100 more Tesla Stationary Batteries being placed in homes out of the state.
Interestingly, one tester operated such a battery for a year and a half from his garage. According to Chowdry, a 10kWh battery could cost $13,000 with a 50% rebate from PG&E. The buyer who talked to the analyst purchased his unit for $1,500 down, followed by 120 monthly installments (10 years) of $15 each.
- Comcast’s new broadband service is twice as fast as Google Fiber (Engadget)
- Comcast has drawn a new battle line against Google Fiber by launching a 2Gbps fiber broadband service called Gigabit Pro. It arrives next month in Atlanta and will be available in 18 million homes across the US by the end of the year.
- BBC releases 10-episode Doctor Who box set as a $12 BitTorrent Bundle (VentureBeat)
The BBC launched an exclusive BitTorrent Bundle today to mark the 10-year anniversary of the new Doctor Who, spanning 10 of the series’ best episodes as well as video commentary from the 12th Doctor, Peter Capaldi. You can download A Decade of the Doctor now for $12.
- Google Lab Puts a Time Limit on Innovations (WSJ)
- Mobile-focused projects get two years to prove themselves; hiring mostly outside experts
- Google is one of the world’s great innovators and invests heavily in research and development. Spending on R&D soared 38% last year to $9.8 billion, outpacing percentage-wise the company’s 19% increase in revenue.
- IBM to Invest $3 Billion in Sensor-Data Unit (WSJ)
- International Business Machines Corp. plans to invest $3 billion over four years on a new business helping customers gather and analyze the flood of data from sensor-equipped devices and smartphones
- UBS to Open Blockchain Research Lab in London (WSJ)
Swiss banking giant UBS is to open a technology lab in London to explore how blockchain technology can be used in financial services.
The lab, set to open this month and occupy a dozen desks at Canary Wharf-based fintech accelerator space Level39 – a hub in London for financial technology startups– will bring together technology experts from the bank and the wider fintech community, UBS said.
Why China May Have the Most Factory Robots in the World by 2017 (WSJ)
China is already the world’s largest market for industrial robots—sales of the machines last year grew 54% from 2013. The nation is expected to have more factory robots than any other country on earth by 2017, according to the German-based International Federation of Robotics.
The trade group says one reason China will continue booming is because it has relatively low “robot density.” China has about 30 robots for every 10,000 factory workers. In Germany, the density is 10 times higher. In Japan, it’s 11 times higher.
Microsoft ended support for Windows XP almost a year ago… and it still has more users than Windows 8 (BGR)
- U.S. Smartphone Use in 2015 (PEW)
10% of Americans own a smartphone but do not have broadband at home, and 15% own a smartphone but say that they have a limited number of options for going online other than their cell phone. Those with relatively low income and educational attainment levels, younger adults, and non-whites are especially likely to be “smartphone-dependent.”
Smartphones are widely used for navigating numerous important life activities, from researching a health condition to accessing educational resources. Lower-income and “smartphone-dependent” users are especially likely to turn to their phones for navigating job and employment resources.
— The Economist (@TheEconomist) April 3, 2015
Apple spent $25.8 billion on chips last year, or 7.6% of industry purchases
— Horace Dediu (@asymco) April 3, 2015
— Vala Afshar (@ValaAfshar) April 3, 2015
— TechCrunch (@TechCrunch) April 3, 2015
— Re/code (@Recode) April 2, 2015