Blackphone 2 Goes On Sale, As BlackBerry Priv Decloaks

28 Sep 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Blackphone 2 Goes On Sale, As BlackBerry Priv Decloaks.

Today Silent Circle’s Blackphone 2 has gone on sale — with an RRP of $799 (excluding taxes). The Blackphone 2 was announced at this year’s MWC and is described as “sexy and safe” by Silent Circle thanks to a slick design and enterprise-grade security features.

The 5.5-inch Android-based device is focused on privacy and security, delivering a pre-installed suite of apps that lets you make private, encrypted calls, send texts, precisely control what the phone’s apps can and cannot access and keep fully separate profiles with different levels of security.Blackphone 2, the sequel to the privacy-focused Blackphone, has launched today, promising to protect users against government surveillance and cyber attacks without compromising on functionality. The company started taking pre-orders for the device last month, having first announced the phone back in March at the Mobile World Congress trade show.

The handset runs a new version of the firm’s Android-based SilentOS, and comes with features including Silent Circle’s Silent Phone app, which offers encrypted voice calls, messaging and file transfers. While a few things changed since the phone’s launch — for example, its Android-based OS is now called Silent OS instead of PrivatOS, and the company has a new President and CEO, Bill Conner — it is the device we were promised in March, with an octa-core processor, 3GB of RAM, 32GB of storage and a 13-megapixel camera. The original Blackphone, born out of a joint venture between Silent Circle and Geeksphone in 2014, claimed to be the first “secure by design” handset, offering full device encryption by default. Meanwhile, on Friday, BlackBerry CEO John Chen finally confirmed the various leaks pointing to a forthcoming Android-powered BlackBerry, due to go on sale by the end of this year in “major markets”.

Silent Circle’s privacy-focused app store is also included, as is Silent Meeting, which the firm claims is the world’s first truly encrypted conference calling platform. However, it was criticised by some for its lack of focus on design, and the fact that it did not offer access to Google Play, choosing instead to launch its own app store with a curated selection of privacy-optimised apps. At the core of these is Silent Phone, which lets users make private voice calls and send encrypted messages (the messaging option was previously separated into an app called Silent Text, which has now been merged with Silent Phone). The phone is also certified for use with existing mobile data management systems, including MobileIron, Citrix, Good and SOTI, according to Silent Circle. “Today our privacy is increasingly threatened by governments, businesses and individuals,” said Bill Conner, president and chief executive of Silent Circle. “In addition, the growing number of companies where employees work on their own devices in and out of the office means that it is ever more vital to build smartphones that deliver on privacy. “People and enterprises want to take back control of their privacy but too often they don’t know how, or they feel they must compromise too much. Users can control and fine-tune their individual app permissions and the data the apps have access to, and can also build separate, secure “Spaces” for their sensitive business data and personal apps.

The device is the first component of Silent Circle’s Enterprise Privacy Platform (EPP), which combines software, services and devices to enable privacy at every level of business. And although this is an Android fork it now includes Google services — such as the Play Store — as well as support for Google’s Android For Work program, to check the IT department’s ‘mobile device management’ box.

And while, on the surface, the phone’s OS now looks more like A N Other standard Android handset, a spokesman for Silent Circle asserts that under the hood key security-focused differences remain. “They’ve worked closer with Google than they did before, which is why you’ll see that the Android platform is a much truer version. It is not about candy-colors, emoji keyboards, curved screens or ‘the next big thing’”, said Janke, “it’s about security, privacy and protecting your digital life, plain and simple. It’s hard not to be incredibly excited about Blackphone 2 when you can literally hold privacy in your hands.” Ever wondered just how many permissions you are giving away when using some of your favorite apps? We asked people to read some of these permissions out loud so we could capture their reactions: https://youtu.be/r4iGtCX4A8o About Silent Circle Silent Circle is a leader in enterprise privacy, delivered through a revolutionary platform of devices, software and services, built on its proprietary ZRTP technology, a fundamentally different, cloud-based, mobile architecture.

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BMW and Nissan roll out dual-plug EV chargers across the US

24 Dec 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

BMW and Nissan partner to create joint fast-charger network in the US.

BMW and Nissan announced Monday that they have teamed up to launch a public network of fast-charging stations across the country, challenging Tesla’s Supercharger network.CNN Money calls the Tesla Model X “the new king of crossover SUVs.” In its round-up of its favorite luxury SUVs of 2015, CNN places the electric ute on the top of its list.

The Model X’s EV powertrain, excellent acceleration and handling and cool design and technology features (including much attention paid to its slick Falcon Wing doors) earn it high praise. With dual 50 kW DC Fast-charging station with both CHAdeMO and CCS (Combo) connectors incorporated into each station, Nissan LEAF and BMW i3 drivers will be able to travel virtually range-anxiety-free. The breadth of Nissan and BMW’s fast-charger buildout is expansive, with fast chargers now available in California, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Maryland, Minnesota, Missouri, New Mexico, Nevada, New York, North and South Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia and Wisconsin.

These 50 kW stations can charge EVs from Nissan and BMW up to 80 percent in about 20-30 minutes, as compared to the longer time required to recharge at a Level 2 (240V) charger, currently the most commonly available public charging station. When the network will be completed, however, is not yet known. “Drivers can easily locate the chargers with ConnectedDrive in the BMW i3 — either using the in-vehicle Navigation or by using the BMW i Remote App — or via the Nissan EZ-Charge smartphone app,” read the joint press release. “Additionally, these chargers are compatible with the Nissan EZ-Charge cards.” This is a significant move. Since the launch of Nissan LEAF – the world’s best-selling electric car – Nissan has reinforced its commitment to zero-emission mobility with investments in EV charging infrastructure to serve the needs of LEAF drivers in markets across the U.S.

Nissan also recently introduced the new 2016 LEAF, which has available best-in-class range of 107 miles, making it the first affordable EV to get more than 100 miles on a single charge. All LEAF models feature an 80kW AC synchronous motor that generates 107 horsepower and 187 lb-ft of torque, providing a highly responsive, fun-to-drive experience. BMW i is focused on the development of visionary vehicles and mobility services, inspiring design, and a new understanding of premium that is strongly defined by sustainability.

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