USDA: Rural broadband is high priority | Smart city construction slated to begin in 2020 | Judge challenges DOJ's price-hike theory
April 12, 2018
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USDA: Rural broadband is high priority
The recently passed federal spending bill allows the government to fund more rural broadband projects, said Steve Censky, US deputy secretary of agriculture. Censky pointed to the unprecedented amount of money -- $13.5 billion in 2018 -- the omnibus bill allocates to broadband and other rural needs.
American Agriculturist (4/11) 
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Business & Industry Watch
Smart city construction slated to begin in 2020
Sidewalk Labs has revealed a timeline for a smart city pilot project in Toronto that will include autonomous vehicles, low-cost modular buildings and renewable energy. The company plans to break ground in 2020.
Reuters (4/9) 
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Judge challenges DOJ's price-hike theory
US District Judge Richard Leon questioned the assumptions of a key government witness Wednesday in the trial over the Justice Department's attempt to block AT&T from buying Time Warner. When a university professor testified that the merger could give AT&T leverage in dealing with pay-TV companies that want to buy Time Warner's content, Leon pointed to earlier remarks that suggested otherwise.
Bloomberg (free registration) (4/11) 
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USTelecom Spotlight
It's tax time: Prevent online identity theft and tax refund fraud
Every year thousands of people fall prey to tax fraud, and monetary losses add up to millions of dollars. This year the Internal Revenue Service has reported seeing email schemes targeting tax professionals and payroll and human resources personnel as well as taxpayers. USTelecom member Hawaiian Telcom shares some "must know" tips to prevent identity theft and tax refund fraud as we race toward Tax Day.
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PlayStation Vue service expands beyond gaming consoles
Around 70% of PlayStation Vue streaming occurs on non-PlayStation devices, Vice President and head of PlayStation Vue Dwayne Benefield said during an NAB Show session. Benefield also noted that the average viewer session lasts for five hours and that live TV makes up approximately 80% of viewing time on the over-the-top service.
Multichannel News (4/11),  FierceCable (4/11) 
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Technology Trends
Qualcomm targets new chip at IoT devices
Qualcomm targets new chip at IoT devices
(Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
Qualcomm has announced a new chip that combines the company's artificial intelligence and image signal processors with its multicore Arm processor. The company is targeting the chips for the internet of things, such as in smart security cameras, virtual reality devices, sports and wearable cameras, and robotics.
TechCrunch (4/11) 
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Smart Speaker penetration jumped 50% from Dec. to Feb.
Between early December 2017 and February 2018, sales of smart speakers increased 50%, with market penetration for the devices reaching 20% of Wi-Fi homes in the US, per comScore data. Amazon and Google saw significant success with their smart speaker offerings during the period, while Apple lost ground because the HomePod's release was delayed.
Forbes (4/11) 
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IP Download
Cloudflare provides protection for connected devices
Cloudflare has introduced the Spectrum software to protect internet-connected devices and services from distributed-denial-of-service attacks. Games and email servers will now have the DDoS protection websites get, the company says.
The Next Web (4/12) 
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