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Microsoft Updates Privacy Policy To Admit Listening To Voice Data

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Following the discovery that Microsoft contractors sometimes listen to translated Skype calls, Redmond has updated its privacy policy.

The updated policy now admits that the software giant does collect user voice data via its staff and contractors.

The admission comes after a contractor revealed to Motherboard last week that Microsoft workers occasionally listen to real Skype conversations that have been processed by its translation software. The idea is that some of these conversations are ‘reviewed’ to check the quality of translations….

Earlier this month, a Vice report revealed that, like Amazon, Google and Facebook, contract workers deployed by Microsoft listen to recorded conversation fragments when users interact with the company’s virtual assistant, Cortana. The report also revealed that the company’s contract workers also listen and transcribe the conversations made by users when they use the Skype application translation service, which the company launched in 2015.

Privacy admission

Internal documents published in the media also revealed that “the Skype audio obtained by Motherboard includes conversations of people who talk intimately with their loved ones, some talk about personal issues such as their weight loss and others apparently discuss relationship problems.”

Other files showed that Microsoft contractors are also listening to voice commands that users talk to Cortana, the company’s voice assistant.

This development meant that Microsoft became the last to get involved in the privacy row surrounding the use of digital personal assistants of a tech giant, when they listen and record user interactions.

What made this discovery so alarming was that, although Microsoft admitted in its privacy policy that it has users’ permission to collect and process their data, it nowhere indicated that humans can really hear the calls.

Microsoft admitted that it collected user data when faced with it last week, but now the company has updated its privacy policy so that customers know that it has been collecting voice data from its users with the help of employees and contractors, he said. Reuters

According to reports, a Microsoft spokesman said the company collects voice data to provide voice-enabled services for Skype and Cortana and sometimes uses providers to help improve these services.

“We realized, based on the questions recently raised, that we could do a better job specifying that humans sometimes review this content,” the spokesman told Reuters in a statement sent via email.

“We have updated our privacy statement and frequently asked questions about products to add clarity and will continue to examine new opportunities for improvement,” the Microsoft spokesman added.

Privacy scares

There have been a number of privacy issues of technology companies that apparently listen to people’s conversations with their personal assistants.

Earlier this year, it was reported that a global team of people at Amazon reviewed audio clips of people talking to their smart speakers with Alexa technology, to help improve their functionality.

Concerns arose again about Amazon again in May when the e-commerce giant filed a patent that would allow Alexa to record everything a person says, before an activation command word is issued.

In May, Amazon was hit with two lawsuits claiming that its smart speakers with Alexa technology are recording children.

Amazon did not help matters last month when it admitted in a letter to an American senator who keeps the voice recordings of Alexa users indefinitely.

Meanwhile, earlier this week, the Luxembourg data protection regulator opened talks with Amazon about how the company processed Alexa voice recordings made of people.

Google was also involved when it admitted in July that it uses “language experts” worldwide to study small “fragments” of user recordings obtained from Google Home smart speakers.

Together with Apple (with its assistant Siri) they have now suspended the review of users’ voice recordings.

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New update of WhatsApp released for iPhone users, these will be major changes

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New update of WhatsApp released for iPhone users, these will be major changes

WhatsApp has released a new version for the iPhone platform. This update is 2.19.110. Many changes have been made in this. This update for iPhone users has been given in the stable version. If you are using its beta version, then you have to download its stable version. Apart from this update, the company has also released a new support page to help users in iCloud backup troubleshooting.

Know what will be found in WhatsApp: The new update of WhatsApp on the iPhone platform will bring many changes. It will not display a notification badge for muted chats. The new update will hide them. This simply means that if you have muted a chat, you will not get any notification from it. In addition, while editing any media, a guideline has been given to enable the Jers to place the new stickers, emoji correctly.

As reported by WABetaInfo, the group privacy setting has also been added to this update. It was rolled out in India this year. Earlier, users were given the option of Nobody in group settings. But from now on they are being given the option of My Contacts Except. Under this option, users can select contacts that do not add you to a group.

Know feature details: This feature is Blacklist Contact. Under this feature, users will be able to blacklist the contacts that add them to the unvoiced group. This new feature has been rolled out in WhatsApp version 2.19.110.20 in iOS (not currently available for all users) and 2.19.298 in Android. If you want to use this feature, then you have to update WhatsApp in your phone.

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Huawei Mate X launched, will compete with Samsung’s foldable phone

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Huawei Mate X launched, will compete with Samsung's foldable phone

China’s smartphone maker Huawei has launched its foldable 5G Mate X (Mate X).  This phone has just been launched in China.  This phone is now available for pre-booking in China.  Huawei announced the launch of this phone on its official Weibo account.  The company first wanted to launch this phone in June but later the launch of the phone was postponed.

 

This much awaited phone from Huawei will be available for sale from next month.  Right now, this phone has been launched in China.  In China, this phone has been launched with a price tag of 16,999 yuan i.e. about 1 lakh 70 thousand rupees.

 

 Specifications of Huawei Mate X

If we talk about specifications, then on opening the Huawei Mate X, it shows an 8-inch wraparound OLED tablet display.  At the same time, after turning off this smartphone, it turns into a smartphone with 6.6 inch screen.  The smartphone has a 6.6-inch main display with 2480×1148 pixels on folding.  In this unfolded condition, in this smartphone you will get an 8-inch main display, which has a resolution of 2480×2200 pixels.  When folded, its rear display becomes 6.4 inches.  The Kirwin 980 chipset has been used in Huawei’s new phone and as an OS it has EMUI 9.1.1 out of the box based on Android 9.0 pie.

 40MP primary camera in rear of foldable phone

The Huawei Mate X has a 4,500 mAh battery with fast charging support of 55 watts.  For photography, there is a 16 megapixel ultra wide angle lens and 8 megapixel telephoto lens with a 40 megapixel primary camera in the rear of the phone.  These triple Leica camera setup present in the phone can also be used to click selfie with the help of secondary display.

 

 Huawei sold 200 million phones in 2019

Huawei has sold over 200 million phones so far.  The company completed this target 64 days earlier than the previous year.

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Jio launches new all in one plan, will get 2GB data and calling up to 1000 minutes

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Jio launches new all in one plan, will get 2GB data and calling up to 1000 minutes

Reliance Jio has been facing the displeasure of its customers since recently announcing the imposition of IUC charge.  However, while the company has levied IUC charges, it has announced to give free data and other benefits to customers in return.  After all this, Jio has come up with four new plans which will remove all the worries of Jio users.  After the arrival of these new plans, users will not only get more data than the old recharge, but will also get 1000 minutes to talk on other networks.  However, the validity of these plans will also vary.

 

Reliance Jio has launched its plan today and the user can see it by visiting Jio’s website.  In these plans offered as All in One, the user gets four recharge options.  Of these, the first recharge option is Rs 222, the second is Rs 333, the third is Rs 444 and the fourth is Rs 555.  These plans mean that users can take advantage of additional data in addition to getting minutes to call Jio and non-Jio networks with the same recharge.

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