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Netflix CEO shows friendly face to telcos at top mobile fair

February 27, 2017 By Sophie Sassard and Eric Auchard BARCELONA, Spain (Reuters) – Streaming video pioneer Netflix held out a vision of cooperation to potentially skeptical telecom partners on Monday, saying it could deliver a quality experience to mobile phones without hogging bandwidth needed for other services. In a first for a media executive, Netflix Chief Executive Reed Hastings delivered the keynote speech on the first day of the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, the telecom industry’s biggest annual trade fair. Netflix needs partners such as mobile operators to increase…

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Telefonica bets on Aura to keep customers sweet

February 26, 2017 By Sophie Sassard BARCELONA, Spain (Reuters) – Spanish telecoms giant Telefonica announced a new strategy on Sunday promising to give customers back control of their own data with the help of a new digital personal assistant. The so-called “fourth platform” comes after Telefonica faced questions about its growth strategy last year following a dividend cut and asset disposals to repay debt. The new app, named “Aura”, was developed using Microsoft’s artificial-intelligence expertise. It allows users to decide whether or not to share insights generated by their data…

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Samsung launches new tablets in flagship phone hiatus

February 26, 2017 BARCELONA, Spain (Reuters) – Samsung Electronics launched two new tablets on Sunday, marking its first major announcement since being forced to withdraw the flagship Galaxy Note 7 smartphone after some of the devices caught fire. The Galaxy Tab S3 and the Galaxy Book were presented at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, in past years the scene of major Samsung launches. This year, Samsung has postponed the presentation of the Galaxy S8, its next key device. Instead, it took the wraps off the Galaxy Tab S3 and…

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Nokia goes back to the future with 49 euro phone

February 26, 2017 By Eric Auchard BARCELONA, Spain (Reuters) – Nokia’s newly revitalized phone business went back to the future on Sunday, re-introducing a brightly colored version of the classic 3310 talk and text phone, the world’s most popular device in the year 2000. The new model has bigger screens and is priced at just 49 euros ($52). Its 22 hours of talk time and up to one month of standby time potentially heighten the phone’s appeal as a backup for smartphone users. Analysts hailed the 3310 launch as a…

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TCL carries flickering BlackBerry flame with new phone launch

February 25, 2017 BARCELONA, Spain (Reuters) – Blackberry Ltd may have exited the device business, but fans of the pioneering email machine need not despair as Chinese smartphone maker TCL Communication has introduced its first Blackberry-licensed phone with the physical keyboard that was long its key allure. The KEYone combines a touch display with a physical keyboard to give users more useable space for typing than a typical 5.5-inch all-touch smartphone, along with BlackBerry Ltd’s security and software, TCL said. TCL cut the new brand-licensing deal in December with BlackBerry…

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