New Startup: Revolut

Posted on: Saturday, November 25, 2017

Have you heard of Revolut? It is a new startup company that launched in 2015 in England and Wales. They dub themselves a company that creates a world beyond banking. Users can create a free account in just minutes if they are using GBP or EUR. So let’s take a look at some of the things they offer!

The main goal of the company is to connect users internationally, by offering free global ATM withdrawals, as well as free money exchange in 25 different countries. They want to encourage international travel and allow users to spend abroad without fees, thanks to their Mastercard. The company also wants to provide easy to use, daily applications for users. This includes things as simple as money transfers, budgeting, and splitting bills.

On top of all this, Revolut also offers incredible customer support services and next generation security. They have two different account levels, a free standard account as well as a premium account for a monthly fee.

Now, two and a half years after it’s launch, the company has accumulated over 1 million customers across Europe. Since the launch date, Revolut claims to have saved users over $160 million in FX fees, compared to traditional bank accounts.

Some other interesting stats? The company is acquiring customers at a rate of over 3,000 per day, and these users have made a cumulative total of 4.2 million transactions.

It’s definitely one to check out!


Snips – The Latest In Voice Activation

Posted on: Wednesday, November 22, 2017

We are becoming more and more familiar with voice activation, and voice customization built into our favourite devices. It all started with Apple’s Siri, and has come all the way to Amazon’s Alexa and Window’s Cortana.

What’s the point of voice activation? It can definitely be fun, but the main point of course is to simplify our lives and make our connections with smart applications all the more efficient. Why pick up your phone and go through your entire contact list to call someone, when Siri could do it for you? Why open up your browser and search for a recipe to make for dinner when Cortana can do the same thing? And why walk across the room to turn on the radio when Alexa can play your music?

We have definitely gotten the hang of how to do things in less steps. That’s why many are interested in seeing what the new start-up, French company ‘Spins’ has to offer in the voice activation game. The main element here is that the company won’t be using a pre-existing voice application, but creating their own. And you will be the one creating and customizing the voice, as well as everything it is capable of doing.

Snips breaks their version down in four easy steps. First, you create your custom voice and pick the language(s) of your choice. You can name it too, so instead of saying ‘Hey Snips’, you can pick whatever name you like! Next, you can pick and choose between what type of applications you want Snips to help you out with. You can customize your own, or pick from Snips’ list of common items, such as music, timers, weather, etc. If you want more than the available options, Snips has thousands of choices to choose from, and it will help you create the codes. Finally, Snips makes it easy for you to hook your new assistant up to your mobile device or computer.


Tesla Unveils… a Truck

Posted on: Friday, November 17, 2017

Every year, approximately 4,000 Americans die or are critically injured in truck-related collisions and accidents. Truck drivers have one of the most dangerous jobs considering the risk of fatigue due to the long and consecutive hours they put in on a weekly basis. Although there are many controls present and safety standards have improved over the years, this is still a big problem. The majority of accidents are due to human error, and fatigue and burnout play a huge part in this. The fact it, no amount of professional skill and experience can outlast the need for sleep.

Now, let’s talk about something that could solve this problem as we know it. Elon Musk announced last night that Tesla’s newest project is a truck – a fully electric semi. As with all Tesla trucks, autopilot is a standard, meaning driving on highways will be almost completely automated. To add another even more advanced element, the trucks also include features that prevent jackknifing – another one of the most dangerous risks a driver faces. For those who don’t know, jackknifing occurs when a truck turns in one direction, but the trailer portion goes the opposite way. The risk of flipping is very high in these situations.

So what makes Tesla trucks safer? First of all, each one of the wheels has an independent motor working within the electric drivetrain. This means that weight can be sensed individually on different locations of the truck, and allow it to balance itself out by using either negative or positive torque depending on the imbalance and direction. The autopilot takes some of the focus off the driver’s mind and allows them to be more alert and relaxed at the wheel.

What are some other features of the semi? The model is going into production in 2019, and Tesla says it will be able to go from 0 to 60 mph in 5 seconds – on empty. Comparing to the common diesel trucks driven today, this is an increase of 3x the speed. The truck will be able to hold a load of up to 80,000 lbs, and when full, it should be able to reach 60 mph in just 20 seconds.

From an inside point, the cab has a minimalist feel to it, with 2 touchscreens and a centre seat (rather than being offset to the left). The diver will sit much further forward since there is no motor taking up space, and there is plenty of storage space in the cabin.

We will definitely be staying tuned for the latest updates!


What To Expect On Black Friday

Posted on: Thursday, November 16, 2017

Every year as Black Friday approaches, companies attempt to come up with possibilities for what big ticket (and small!) items will be going on sale during the big shopping day. Don’t forget about Cyber Monday either, for those who would prefer to shop online rather than face the crowded stores and malls. Mark your calendars for November 24th and 27th!

So, what’s it looking like the best items of this year’s sale will be? We consulted a few different sources to determine what the best bets for the year are.

Let’s talk tech gadgets. This is always one of the most popular Black Friday categories, since these items are often pricey – consumers want to get the best deal wherever possible, and that often means buying around the end of November or waiting until Boxing Day. Some new releases that everyone has been eyeing include the Apple iPhone X, as well as the previously released 8 and 7. We can definitely expect a price drop on the older model phones, including carrier and plan discounts. We’re thinking that bluetooth items (read: headphones, speakers, etc.) will also be a good Black Friday snag – especially since the new iPhones do not have the more easily compatible headphone jack! There has already been a big improvement in products (mainly Apple) being available without the need to plug into the jack, one example being the Square Point of Sale card reader.

Amazon – you can definitely expect to see some great deals on the latest Amazon products! Most importantly, Echo products should be coming down in price this weekend. They’ve already got an entire Black Friday section available on their website.

Smart appliances will definitely be a highly sought out item in a few days. With all the upgrades as of late to home appliances, houses, delivery services, personal gadgets and more, we should expect a high number of sales on related products.


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