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Sonos Speakers Get Spotify Control

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Sonos SpotifyThe Sonos and Spotify mobile device apps get a pair of updates-- a combination allowing customers to control Sonos speakers directly through the Spotify app via Spotify Connect.

Such functionality requires a Spotify Premium subscription, and includes all curation, discovery and sharing features associated with the music streaming service, as well as multiroom speaker support. The reverse is also possible, since one can control Spotify playlists and tracks through the Sonos app, and visitors can control the Sonos system using the Spotify app on their own mobile devices.

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Meizu Intros M5 Note

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Meizu announces an update on last year's M3 Note-- the M5 Note, a 5.5-inch handset featuring a design 0.1mm thinner than its predecessor, together with 4GB RAM and up to 64GB of storage.

Meizu M5 NoteInterestingly, the M5 Note as a smaller battery compared to the previous model, since it has a 400mAh number compared to the 4100mAh battery powering the M3 Note. However the M5 Note does add 18W fast charging, and according to Meizu it can be fully charged in just 90 minutes. Other features derived from the M3 Note include the 1080p 5.5-inch display, Helio P10 chipset, 13MP rear-facing camera and fingerprint sensor in the back.

The OS of choice is Android 6.0, and connectivity comes through hybrid dual-SIM (nano+nano/microSD).

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GoPro Sells Standalone Karma Grip

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GoPro announces a standalone version of the Karma stabliser grip found in the Karma drone-- a means for users of the company's action cameras wanting to shoot more stable, smoother footage.

Karma gripThe grip is reminiscent of the Osmo, the more arguably sophisticated action camera stabiliser option offered by Chinese drone maker DJI. It is compatible straight out of the box with the Hero 5 Black, but using it with the Hero 4 Black and Silver requires a separately sold harness accessory. The same goes for the Hero 5 Session, only that specific harness should hit the market sometime on Q2 2017.

GoPro also offers a number of accessories for use with the Karma grip, including a mounting ring for use with GoPro mounts, an extension cable complete with remote control and a weather-resistant case.

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Amazon Debuts Checkout-Free Supermarket

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After all but conquering online shopping Amazon takes on the challenge of brick-and-mortar retail-- presenting a supermarket with no cash registers and associated queues in its home town Seattle.

Amazon GoThe "Amazon Go" store sounds like a science fiction vision of shopping in the future. Customers tap their smartphone on a turnstile when they walk into the store, logging into the store network and their Amazon account. Then they pick up their groceries and, once done, simply walk out, with the Amazon online shopping system handling the required monetary transaction. Amazon calls it "Just Walk Out Shopping," and while details are hazy the company says the technology behind it is derived from that powering self driving vehicles.

Thus, the company throws a bevy of buzzwords to describe how the system works-- computer vision, sensor fusion, deep learning. Apparently Amazon has a combination of sensors and AI sophisticated enough to determine what individual customers are looking at (even in a crowd!), identify partially blocked labels and remove an item from one's virtual shopping cart if it is removed from the real one.

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Klipsh Takes on Wireless Multiroom Audio

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Klipsch is the next company to jump into wireless multiroom audio with the Stream, a product collection consisting of 6 products featuring DTS Play-Fi technology for high-resolution streaming over wifi networks.

Klipsch StreamStream products include a pair of Reference soundbars (RSB-8 and RSB-14), the RW-1 wireless speaker, the Three tabletop stereo system and two legacy source converters (Gate and PowerGate). All can handle audio from a variety of sources, including online streaming, local storage and traditional sources. Control comes through mobile devices equipped with the companion Klipsch Stream app.

The two soundbars feature HDMI inputs and output, with the ability to pass 4K UHD video signals as well as HDMI-ARC and CEC. Additional inputs include Bluetooth, optical and RCA. The RSB-8 package includes a 40-inch wide soundbar and a 6.5-inch subwoofer, while the top-of-the-line RSB-14 includes a 44-inch soundbar and 8-inch subwoofer as well as three HDMI inputs. Sound comes through four 2.5-inch midrange drivers and two 0.78-inch tweeters in Klipsch tractrix horns.

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