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LanceList - Issue #66

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HomePod Update? Hyperloop Pod Goes Faster; 5G is Coming
 

LanceList

July 23 · Issue #66 · View online
Tech stories that matter, Gadget Quests, nerd pursuits, and other things you ought to know.

HomePod Update? Hyperloop Pod Goes Faster; 5G is Coming

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Call me HomePod. Apple’s HomePod is an impressive, if expensive, home audio device that also doubles as a smart speaker. I loved the audio quality on first listen and, when I reviewed it, was generally impressed with Siri’s ability to satisfy my Apple Music requests, but I did wonder why the calendar and initiating phone calls were left out. Now it seems more like some of these features were left behind and are finally catching up. In May, we finally get the promised AirPlay 2 stereo-pairing capability and now there are rumors that at least phone calls initiated directly through the HomePod are on their way, too. They might also add multiple timers, though I don’t care that much about that feature, do you?
HomePod may get phone call support and multiple timers HomePod may get phone call support and multiple timers
Faster. The dream of high-speed tube travel, or Hyperloop technology, is inching closer to reality. Hyperloop is the revolutionary vacuum-tube-based transportation technology proposed by Elon Musk in a 2013 whitepaper. Ever since then, companies, engineers, and students have been competing to build the tube systems and pods that will transport people at nearly Mach 1 (or just below the speed of sound). Yesterday, engineering students from the Technical University of Munich (a.k.a. WARR Hyperloop) won their third pod speed competition in a row. The self-propelled pod zipped along a short Hyperloop tube test bed at 290 mph, that’s just 30 miles slower than a bullet train. It’s also a long way from over 700 mph. There will be more competitions, which might be held underground in one of Elon Musk’s Boring Tunnels.
SpaceX hyperloop pod competition winner breaks speed record – TechCrunch SpaceX hyperloop pod competition winner breaks speed record – TechCrunch
Faster Phones. 5G the cellular band that supposed to transform mobile technology (and therefore our lives) has been slow to reach consumers, but that’s all about to change. Qualcomm announced a new set of 5G antennas that will overcome one of 5G’s biggest hurdles: its susceptibility to interference. Qualcomm’s “first fully-integrated 5G NR mmWave and sub-6 GHz RF modules for smartphones and other mobile devices” should start appearing on mobile phones early next year. I can’t wait. 
Qualcomm's 5G antennas are primed for next year's phones Qualcomm's 5G antennas are primed for next year's phones
Whither Libraries. This Forbes contributor thinks we should do away with libraries and replace them with Amazon stores. He says libraries are irrelevant and pitches this idea as a cost-saving measure. He’s wrong on so many points and seems blissfully unaware of digital lending programs that are essentially partnerships between libraries and Amazon. Probably worth a read if you want to prepare to defend your local library.
Amazon Should Replace Local Libraries to Save Taxpayers Money
P.S. Don’t be this guy.
P.S.S. Surprising no one.
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