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Panasonic joins firms stepping away from Huawei after US ban

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Panasonic joins firms stepping away from Huawei after US ban

TOKYO: Japan’s Panasonic on Thursday said it would stop supplying some components to Huawei, joining a growing list of firms distancing themselves from the Chinese telecoms giant after a US ban over security concerns.

Japan’s Toshiba also announced it was temporarily halting shipments to Huawei to check whether US-made parts were involved, in order to comply with Washington’s new restrictions.

The moves came a day after major Japanese and British mobile carriers said they would delay releasing new Huawei handsets, upping the pressure on the world’s second-largest smartphone manufacturer.

“We’ve stopped all business transactions with Huawei and its 68 group companies… that are subject to the US government ban,” Panasonic spokesman Joe Flynn said.

Panasonic’s business with Huawei includes the supply of “electronic parts,” he said, declining to provide further details.

Washington’s restrictions affect products made fully or partially in the United States, where Panasonic manufactures some of the components it supplies to Huawei, the Japanese firm said.

There was no immediate comment from Huawei on the move, and a Panasonic official declined to comment on what business the Japanese firm would continue to do with the Chinese company.

Toshiba meanwhile said it had temporarily halted shipments to Huawei while it checks if they include US-made parts.

“We will resume shipments if we confirm our products don’t use American-made parts,” spokesman Takashi Ebina said.

Last week, US President Donald Trump declared a national emergency to bar US companies from using foreign telecoms equipment deemed a security risk.

The move appeared aimed at Huawei, though the White House said no particular company or country was targeted.

The US Commerce Department has also announced an effective ban on US companies selling or transferring US technology to Huawei.

The moves have prompted a parade of firms to step back from dealings with Huawei, including US internet giant Google, whose Android operating system powers most of the world’s smartphones.

And on Wednesday, mobile carriers in Japan and Britain said they were delaying releases of Huawei handsets.

China’s Foreign Minister Wang Yi denounced the US moves and said Beijing would “fight to the very end” in its trade war with Washington.

“The US use of state power to arbitrarily exert pressure on a private Chinese company like Huawei is typical economic bullying,” Wang said Wednesday at a meeting in Kyrgyzstan.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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World’s highest operating weather stations installed on Mt. Everest

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Himalya

ISLAMABAD: The National Geographic Society has announced the successful installation of the worlds highest operating weather stations on Mount Everest to provide researchers, climbers, and the public with near real-time information about mountain conditions, the media reported.
“The multi-disciplinary team installed the world’s two highest operating automated weather stations at Balcony area (8,430 m) and South Col (7,945 m), as well as three other weather stations on Mount Everest,” Fae Jencks, Director, Marketing and Communications at the National Geographic Society, said in a statement.
The other stations were placed at Phortse (3,810 m), Everest Base Camp (5,315 m) and Camp II (6,464 m), the statement said, adding that each weather station will record data on temperature, relative humidity, barometric pressure, wind speed, and wind direction, The Himalayan Times reported.
Data from the weather stations and other new research conducted as part of National Geographic and Rolex’s Perpetual Planet Extreme Expedition to Everest will help communities respond to climate risks that threaten the lives and livelihoods of the more than one billion people in the region.
The successful installation aims to break new ground in our monitoring and understanding of climate change as the stations will help continuously monitor the upper reaches of the atmosphere, which is critical to tracking and predicting weather patterns around the globe, the statement added.
“The Balcony weather station is the first weather station installed at an elevation above 8,000 meters, meaning it will also be the first to sample the stratosphere as natural variations in the atmospheric boundaries change over time.”
From April to June, an international team of scientists, climbers, and story-tellers, led by the NatGeo Society and Tribhuvan University and supported in partnership with Rolex, conducted a scientific expedition to Everest, believed to be the most comprehensive single scientific expedition to the mountain in history, it claimed.
With team members from eight countries, including 17 Nepali researchers, the expedition team conducted trailblazing research in five areas of science that are critical to understanding environmental changes and their impacts: biology, glaciology, meteorology, geology, and mapping.

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Instagram, PlayStation hit with outages

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Instagram PlayStation hit with outages

SAN FRANCISCO: An Instagram outage on Thursday left users of the Facebook-owned social network flocking to Twitter to vent frustration.

The website DownDetector.com showed a spike in reports of Instagram being unavailable in the afternoon, nearly hitting 54,000 before diving back down.

“Earlier today, a technical issue caused some people to have trouble accessing their Instagram accounts. We are now fully recovered and apologize for the inconvenience,” an Instagram spokesperson said in a statement.

The company did not elaborate on the cause or extent of the outage.

People using the #instagram hashtag on Twitter posted that attempts to access the service on mobile apps or computers had been met with messages such as “couldn’t refresh feed” or “something went wrong.”

Along with complaints and animated gifs playing on the inconvenience, some offered words of wisdom.

“Imagine if Instagram and social media closed every day at 6 pm like a shop,” read a tweet from the account of @stevebartlettsc.

“We would all be forced to meet up and speak to each other in real life, to be present with our families, to work out, to go outside, to read, to make art, music… eurghhh, nevermind.”

Meanwhile, some gamers trying to access the PlayStation network on Thursday were also met with error messages.

“We’re aware that some users are experiencing issues logging into PSN. Thank you for your patience as we investigate,” the official Ask PlayStation Twitter account said.

According to DownDetector.com, the outages were concentrated in northern Europe and Britain, as well as in several parts of the United States and Brazil.

 

 

 

 

 

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Facebook says CEO did not ignore personal data issues

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Facebook says CEO did not ignore personal data issues

SAN FRANCISCO: Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg did not knowingly violate an agreement with the regulator supervising the company’s management of users’ personal data, the social media giant said Wednesday as it addressed an issue that has been under federal investigation for the past year.

Facebook was required to provide the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) with emails, some from 2012, suggesting that Zuckerberg was personally aware of but neglected to address the fact that external applications had access to massive amounts of personal data without Facebook users’ knowledge, the Wall Street Journal reported.

The newspaper added that it did not have access to the documents but that anonymous sources had described their contents.

“We have fully cooperated with the FTC’s investigation to date and provided tens of thousands of documents, emails and files,” said a Facebook spokesperson.

“At no point did Mark or any other Facebook employee knowingly violate the company’s obligations under the FTC consent order nor do any emails exist that indicate they did.”

The FTC reopened investigations into whether Facebook violated a 2011 settlement with the regulator on protecting user data following revelations last year that personal data from tens of millions of users was hijacked by the political consultancy Cambridge Analytica as it worked on Donald Trump’s presidential campaign.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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