Strange Things

GoPro Announces Foldable Karma Drone


After a year of rumors and teases, the action camera company finally announced its very first drone, the GoPro Karma ($799).

The amateur-friendly white and black quadcopter is built for capturing aerial footage using a mounted GoPro (GPRO, Tech30) camera, which is sold separately.

The drone comes with a handheld controller with a touchscreen and joysticks, and folds up small enough to fit into a backpack. It’s light enough so active types can haul it to the top of a mountain before base jumping or take it on an epic bike ride.

Netflix, Amazon revenues to More Than Double


Netflix_Data from Juniper Research has found that revenues from SVoD services, such as Netflix and Amazon, are set to more than double from $14.6 billion (€13bn) this year, to $34.6 billion in 2021. Netflix now sees US subscriber numbers level with leading network providers DirecTV and Comcast (47 million and 47.7 million respectively).

Netflix saw rapid expansion in January 2016, launching in 130 new markets simultaneously, bringing its total coverage to 190 countries, yet international subscriber growth lacks pace. As quarterly results suggested underwhelming growth prospects for subscriber numbers.

Netflix’s expansion has resulted in price increases, but the beneficiaries may ultimately be the provider’s rivals if the competitor price differential becomes too great.

Research author Lauren Foye explained: “Whilst Netflix has expanded its coverage globally, the test will be whether it can meet its original content production costs, as well as provide quality content to consumers. It is believed that US rival Hulu is now close to offering the same amount of content as Netflix, and others are pushing new models, such as Amazon’s monthly subscriptions to Prime video, and YouTube Red subscriptions for exclusive content.”

Drone Ghost


De La Soul’s Crowd Funded Album Debuts at No.1


De La Soul’s first album in 12 years, Kickstarter-backed and the Anonymous Nobody…, scores its first No.1 on Top Rap Albums since the chart began in 2004. The group first reached the Billboard charts back in 1989 with 3 Feet High and Rising.

Anonymous leads the chart with 21,000 copies sold. The entire Kickstarter campaign drew over 11,000 backers and raised $601,000.

A 34-minute documentary about the creation of the De La Soul album and the crowd-funding process can be viewed in the video above.

iPhone 7


With new camera systems, stereo speakers, and the most powerful chip ever in a smartphone, iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus make the things you do most even better. Two new finishes highlight the seamless design.

Pandas no longer an Endangered Species



Thanks to an increase in available habitat, the population of the giant panda rose 17% from 2004 to 2014, leading the IUCN to downgrade it from endangered to vulnerable.

A nationwide census in 2014 found 1,864 giant pandas in the wild in China, up from 1,596 in 2004, the IUCN said in its report on the animal.

Revered in Chinese culture, the giant panda was once widespread throughout southern China.

Since the 1970s, it has been the focus of one of the most intensive, high-profile campaigns to recover an endangered species, after a census by the Chinese government found around 2,459 pandas in the world.

The creation of a panda reserve system in 1992 increased available habitats; today, there are 67 reserves in the country that protect 67% of the population and nearly 1.4 million hectares of habitat.

Meanwhile, partnerships between the Chinese government and international conservation nongovernmental organizations and zoos have spread research, conservation and breeding efforts. Zoo Atlanta announced Saturday that 19-year-old Lun Lun, originally from China’s Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding, had given birth to twins.

The improved status confirms that the Chinese government’s reforestation and forest protection efforts are working, the IUCN said. But climate change still threatens to eliminate more than 35% of the panda’s bamboo habitat in the next 80 years; hence the “vulnerable” designation, which means it’s still at risk of extinction.

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