Hidden Keylogger Discovered On HP Laptops

Reports have recently surfaced regarding a worrying discovery in some HP notebooks. Micheal Myng, also known as ZwClose, discovered a keylogger hidden inside HP’s Synaptics Touchpad driver whilst he was looking through the driver’s “strings.” This discovery is indeed worrying because the keylogger can be accessed by hackers to record every keystroke that a user makes.
Thankfully, HP has recently issued an emergency security patch to fix this issue. What makes this discovery even more shocking is the fact that the hidden keylogger is, according to HP, present in over 400 HP notebook models (including EliteBook, Spectre Pro, Envy, Pavilion, ZBook, ProBook, OMEN and many more). That said, the company did mention that the keylogger is disabled by default. The reasoning behind adding a keylogger inside affected HP notebooks in the first place was a measure to solve debug errors.
Image: ZwClose
HP has further stated that neither the company or Synaptics had “any access to customer data as a result of the incident.” Regardless, you can head on over to HP’s official website to check whether your notebook is affected by this issue. The new security patch is also available there as well. In addition, the security patch is available through Windows Update as well.
(Source: ZwClose)
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Google Introduces Several Photography Apps as Part of its New Appsperiments Program

Google recently launched three new photography apps as part of its new series of appsperiments. Appsperiments is a program that focuses on exploring the potentials of mobile photography. It is partly inspired by Google’s Motion Stills app that was first introduced last year.
Just like Motion Stills, these new apps – Storyboard, Selfissimo!, and Scrubbies, are developed by researchers at Google that relies on object recognition, person segmentation, stylisation algorithms, efficient image encoding and decoding technologies, and of course, fun.
Storyboard is a new Android app that transforms your videos into a single-page comic. Just shoot a video and load it into Story board, and the app will automatically select interesting frames, lay them out and apply one of six visual styles. If you don’t like what Storyboard just made, pull down to refresh and instantly produce a new one. Google says that there are about 1.6 trillion different possibilities.
Storyboard
For selfie addicts, Selfissimo! is an Android and iOS app that snaps stylish black and white photo every time you pose. Just tap on start, and every time you stop moving, the app will capture your image. It even display encouraging messages, telling you how well you are doing. Tap on the screen to end the session, select the pictures you want, and save them individually or the entire shoot.
Selfissimo!
Finally, Scrubbies is an iOS app that lets you easily manipulate the speed and direction of video playback. This means that you can create stylish video loops that highlight actions, capture funny faces, and replay moments; sort of like mixing the video by scratching it sort of like what DJ does to music. Scrubbing with one finger plays the video while scrubbing with two fingers captures the playback so you can save it or share it.
These apps are available right now in their respective app stores for free.
(Source: Google Research Blog)
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Metro Exodus Set For Autumn 2018 Launch

Folks at 4A Games have recently released a new trailer for its upcoming, highly anticipated game: Metro Exodus. The trailer – titled “The Aurora” – gives gamers a more in-depth look at the vast world in which Metro Exodus will be based on. In addition, the release date for this game was revealed as well.
According to the new trailer from 4A Games, it looks like gamers can expect Metro Exodus to be released sometime in Autumn 2018. That said, if one looks closer, it seems that the trailer does contain a “hidden” launch date. Towards the end, one can somewhat see, for a brief moment, the date “Aug 8th” being displayed.

For those who may not be aware, Metro Exodus is a game inspired by Dmitry Glukhovsky’s novel, Metro 2035. The game takes place in post-apocalyptic Russia and based on the trailer, it seems likely that most of the action in Metro Exodus will be taking place on the “surface” rather than in underground tunnels like in previous Metro games.
Those aside, it’s worth keeping in mind that Metro Exodus will be available on Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and PC when it’s officially released. 4A Games mentioned that Metro Exodus will be the “greatest Metro adventure yet” – we certainly hope so.
(Source: TechPowerUp)
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Switch 12.12 Promo Brings The Website Down To Its Knees: Sale To Restart At 12PM

UPDATE (12/12 – 1125AM): Switch will resume the sale at 12PM. More details below.
UPDATE (12/12 – 135AM): It seemed that Switch’s website has received extra-ordinary amount of visitors. The site is currently offline at the moment.
ORIGINAL STORY (11/12 – 1150PM):
Aside from Machines, another major Apple Premium Reseller that will be having its own clearance sale in conjunction with 12.12 is Switch. Customers don’t have to wait till tomorrow’s morning to visit Switch branches though as the sale will be taking place online.
While the actual sales price will only be revealed after 12AM, Switch has list down the starting price of the products that will be part of its 12.12 clearance sale tonight. Here are some of them:
Apple Watch: RM 700
iPad Pro: RM 1299
iPhone SE 16GB: RM 999
MacBook: RM 3,999
MacBook Pro 13-inch: RM 5,599
MacBook Pro with Touch Bar: RM 9,9799
UrBeats: RM 200
Beat Studio 2.0 Over-Ear Headphone: RM 600
Beats Solo HD 2.0 / Beats Solo HD On-Ear Headphone: RM 300
Beats by Dr. Dre Solo2: RM 450
Beats Studio Wireless Over-Ear Headphones: RM 999
In general, customers are able to save up to 60% for Apple Watch, 50% for iPad Pro and Beats products as well as 40% for MacBook or MacBook Pro. With just 10 minutes to go before the clearance sales take place, you should start browsing Switch’s official website right now to be prepared for it.
(Source: Switch)

UPDATE (12/12 – 1125AM):
Switch has revealed that the massive surge of visitors has caused its website to go down. But nevertheless, the retailer will kick off the same once again at 12PM according to this notice on its website:

So, let’s see if the site is able to handle the traffic this time around.
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Confirmed: Apple has Acquired Shazam

It looks like the rumour about Apple’s interest in Shazam is spot on. The Cupertino company recently confirmed that it has acquired Shazam. Apple did not disclose the amount, but according to previous reports, it should be for around US$400 million – that’s about RM1.63 billion.
“We are thrilled that Shazam and its talented team will be joining Apple. Apple Music and Shazam are a natural fit, sharing a passion for music discovery and delivering great music experiences to our users. We have exciting plans in store, and we look forward to combining Shazam upon approval of today’s agreement.” – Apple.
As expected, Apple did not provide any detail about what it would do with its new acquisition. The company already integrates Shazam in Siri, allowing users to easily ask Siri what song is playing at the moment. Apple could provide a deeper integration and say, maybe bring back the automatic song-tagging feature that could help you identify songs without you asking it to. Apple could also make use of Shazam’s AR technology.

The deal is pending regulatory approval, and should be closed in the coming weeks. It’ll be interesting to see what happens to Shazam after the acquisition, will it continue to support its Android app? Will it continue to recommending music on Spotify, Apple Music’s rival? Only time will tell.
(Source: The Verge)
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12/12 Deals: Get Original Apple Accessories For Up To 20% Off

Now that Lazada is an authorised Apple reseller, the e-commerce giants has access to the full range of Apple products, including accessories. The Apple store in Lazada just went live yesterday, and today, you can already save a chunk off original Apple accessories.
Lazada is taking up to 20% off the retail prices of Apple accessories for the iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, and even Mac. While the 10% discount for iPhone cases and Apple Watch straps aren’t exactly appealing, this is a good opportunity to stock up on Lightning cables and chargers.

Unfortunately, Lazada doesn’t have the USB-C to Lightning cables yet, but if you want fast charging on the iPhone 8 and iPhone X, you could get the 61W or 87W USB-C chargers for the MacBook Pro and purchase the cable from Apple’s own online store.
Meanwhile, the iPad Pro Smart Cover is also available for 20% off, which is a much better deal than the 20% discount for the luxurious leather sleeve for the same tablet. On a separate note, the AirPods also enjoy 20% off, which makes it one of the better deals in the store. For the artsy ones, the Apple Pencil for iPad Pro is available for a 15% discount.
Finally, there’s the Apple 4K TV, which is going for 10% off retail at RM900.
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12/12 Deals: Xiaomi Mi Box & Google Chromecast Retailing from RM169 Again

If you’re looking for an Android set-top box or a Google Chromecast, good news: the Xiaomi Mi Box and the new Chromecast are back at their lowest prices. In fact, the Mi Box has never been this affordable.
Previously, the Mi Box was listed at RM279 for Lazada’s 11/11 sale. Now, Xiaomi Malaysia’s official Lazada store is selling the Mi Box for only RM275. It’s not a huge difference, of course, but it’s still a very generous price cut from RM349. The Google Chromecast, on the other hand, is listed at RM169 – the very same promotional price during 11/11.

At these price points, there’s really no denying the value for money these two devices provide. If you’d like to see how they stack up to each other, our comparison here should help.
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12/12 Deals: Xiaomi Redmi Note 4’s Last Hurrah

Since the release of the Xiaomi Mi A1, budget hunters may have forgotten about the other value for money smartphone from the Chinese company: the Redmi Note 4. Today, Lazada is giving it the send-off it deserves.
The Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 continued the smartphone line’s tradition of impressive hardware at surprisingly low prices. For the Malaysian market, Xiaomi offers the Redmi Note 4 in two variants: 3GB RAM/32GB storage, and 4GB RAM/64GB storage. Other than that, both models share the same hardware: Snapdragon 625 processor, 5.5-inch Full HD display, and a generous 4,100mAh battery.

For its 12/12 sale, Lazada is slashing close to 10% off the previous lowest price we’ve seen for the 4GB/64GB Xiaomi Redmi Note 4. After being offered for RM805 for some time (already a good discount from the RM949 RRP), Lazada is offering the 4GB RAM/64GB storage model at just RM729.
It’s about RM120 or so less than the Mi A1, which still gets our vote as the better deal with its pure Android and dual camera setup – but having the option to choose is always good.
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Switch 12.12 Online Sale Offers Significant Discounts On Apple Products (UPDATE)

UPDATE (12/12 – 135AM): It seemed that Switch’s website has received extra-ordinary amount of visitors. The site is currently offline at the moment.
ORIGINAL STORY (11/12 – 1150PM):
Aside from Machines, another major Apple Premium Reseller that will be having its own clearance sale in conjunction with 12.12 is Switch. Customers don’t have to wait till tomorrow’s morning to visit Switch branches though as the sale will be taking place online.
While the actual sales price will only be revealed after 12AM, Switch has list down the starting price of the products that will be part of its 12.12 clearance sale tonight. Here are some of them:
Apple Watch: RM 700
iPad Pro: RM 1299
iPhone SE 16GB: RM 999
MacBook: RM 3,999
MacBook Pro 13-inch: RM 5,599
MacBook Pro with Touch Bar: RM 9,9799
UrBeats: RM 200
Beat Studio 2.0 Over-Ear Headphone: RM 600
Beats Solo HD 2.0 / Beats Solo HD On-Ear Headphone: RM 300
Beats by Dr. Dre Solo2: RM 450
Beats Studio Wireless Over-Ear Headphones: RM 999
In general, customers are able to save up to 60% for Apple Watch, 50% for iPad Pro and Beats products as well as 40% for MacBook or MacBook Pro. With just 10 minutes to go before the clearance sales take place, you should start browsing Switch’s official website right now to be prepared for it.
(Source: Switch)
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12/12 Deals: PlayStation 4 Pro Drops Down to RM1,299

On top of the many deals on smartphones, laptops and other gadgets, Sony’s PlayStation 4 consoles are getting quite a good amount of discount as well for 12/12. In fact, the PlayStation 4 Pro is now back at its lowest price.
Instead of its recommended retail price of RM1,799, Lazada is currently listing the PlayStation 4 Pro for merely RM1,299 – matching the e-commerce’s 11/11 deal. The standard PlayStation 4, however, goes for slightly more than its RM999 11/11 price tag at RM1,019. This is still a very good offer, of course.

For RM1,299, the PlayStation 4 Pro is an incredibly good deal – you may want to get it now before stocks run out.
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