‘Racist’ Snapchat filter turns anyone into Bob Marley


Snapchat desperately hopes every little thing will turn out to be alright.
Photo: Ste Smith/Luke Dormehl

A Bob Marley-themed Snapchat filter designed to celebrate 4/20 has backfired, with hordes of users accusing the company of promoting “blackface.”

It’s the latest instant outrage to flare up on the internet, and a total bummer for anyone just trying to enjoy the high holy day for pot smokers. After all, isn’t April 20 the one day of the year we should all be kicking back and chilling out?

Android maker beats Apple to banishing the headphone jack


LeEco will tackle the U.S. market this year.
Photo: LeEco

Apple is expected to banish the 3.5mm headphone jack to make its next-generation iPhone 7 even thinner. But it won’t be the first smartphone maker to take this controversial step.

LeEco today unveiled a trio of new Android-powered handsets that have all snubbed the headphone jack in favor of digital USB-C headphones and wireless alternatives.

Apple and Alphabet employees are definitely feeling the Bern


Silicon Valley is behind Bernie Sanders all the way.
Photo: Ste Smith/Jonathunder/Cult of Mac

Tech employees at Google, Apple, Microsoft and Amazon are some of the most ardent supporters of Democratic candidate Bernie Sanders, according to findings by the Federal Elections Commission.

In all, Google employees have donated $250,000 to Sanders’ campaign, while Apple workers have handed over a not-unimpressive $85,576.

That’s in stark contrast to Hillary Clinton and Republican front-runner Donald Trump, both of whom have mainly attracted financial groups as their leading supporters.

Apple and Google take aim at controversial anti-encryption bill


Tech companies want to protect encryption.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

Apple and Google have leant their names to an open letter taking aim at a controversial new anti-encryption bill, which demands that tech companies make their devices breakable at will.

“We write to express our deep concerns about well-intentioned but ultimately unworkable policies around encryption that would weaken the very defenses we need to protect us from people who want to cause economic and physical harm,” the letter opens.

In addition to Apple and Google, other tech giants which signed the missive include Amazon, eBay, Facebook, Netflix, and more.

Viber follows Apple’s lead with end-to-end encryption


Viber's new app update is a significant one.
Photo: Viber

Popular cross-platform messaging service Viber has announced that it will follow Apple’s example by embracing user privacy through the introduction of end-to-end encryption.

Viber revealed today that it will start rolling this out for all of its one-to-one and group conversations, whether that be video, voice, or text messages. According to a spokesperson for the company, the encryption update will be available to users worldwide within “several weeks,” although an exact date isn’t specified.

You can now enjoy Amazon’s video service for $8.99 a month


Amazon is taking the fight to Netflix.
Photo: Killian Bell/Cult of Android

Amazon is stepping up its battle with competitor Netflix by introducing a payment option allowing customers to buy its streaming video service for a monthly fee of $8.99 — one dollar less than Netflix’s most popular subscription plan.

Previously Amazon’s video service was only available to Prime members, who paid $99 annually for cheaper, faster shipping, alongside other perks.