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Xiaomi gets in security camera issue, quickly responds

The service has been suspended

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Image source: Reddit | u/Dio-V

When you install a security camera in your home, you can usually expect one thing: complete surveillance over your abode. Coupled with a smart home system, you have a controllable security system from the luxury of a mobile device.

However, last year introduced an inevitable side effect of maintaining a smart home system: third parties snooping on your private life. Facebook, Google, and Apple have already stuck their fingers in the cookie jar. You’ll never know who’s watching or listening in.

Adding to this mire, Xiaomi is currently dipping into the same controversy. A Reddit user has reportedly walked in on a disturbing scene on their Google Nest Hub. As with every diligent smart home owner, the user installed a smart security camera — the Xiaomi Mijia — to their Nest Hub.

Image source: Reddit | u/Dio-V

Naturally, pulling up the camera feed on the system should open up only one thing: their own camera feed. Unfortunately, it didn’t go that way. Allegedly, instead of their own camera feed, the system pulled up random feeds from other people’s homes. The black-and-white feeds include empty living rooms, an infant sleeping in a crib, and an elderly man lounging on a couch. Even stranger, the feeds are glitchy, highlighting the situation’s weirdness.

A security camera spying on another security camera is a major security infraction. Even without a clear culprit yet, the situation adds to the mire surrounding invasive smart technology.

Xiaomi’s response

Being alerted on the matter, Xiaomi immediately looked into the issue and took action. Here’s the statement Xiaomi sent to GadgetMatch:

“Upon investigation, we have found out the issue was caused by a cache update on December 26, 2019, which was designed to improve camera streaming quality. This has only happened in extremely rare conditions. In this case, it happened during the integration between Mi Home Security Camera Basic 1080p and the Google Home Hub with a display screen under poor network conditions.

We have also found 1044 users were with such integrations and only a few with extremely poor network conditions might be affected. This issue will not happen if the camera is linked to the Xiaomi’s Mi Home app.

Xiaomi has communicated and fixed this issue with Google, and has also suspended this service until the root cause has been completely solved, to ensure that such issues will not happen again.”

It’s good to see companies reacting quickly on matters like this. Xiaomi has apologized and reiterates that they “always prioritized our users’ privacy and information security.”

SEE ALSO: How to identify counterfeit Xiaomi products


Editor’s Note: Xiaomi’s statement on the matter was added to this article on January 4, 2020

Lifestyle

Tinder adds a panic button for dates that go wrong

Safety first!

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Tinder is like a box of chocolates. You never know who you’re going to get: the girl next door, the workroom hottie, or (worse) the creepy stalker. Unfortunately, the popular dating app can lead to a lot of terrible nights. Bad dates are, of course, not the end of the world. Ending up with a psycho partner, however, can quickly lead to dangerous situations.

In a long-overdue move, Tinder is finally implemented a panic button for dates that go horribly wrong. The emergency feature will alert authorities and safety personnel if things go sideways. Additionally, it can keep trusted friends updated on where you are.

The panic button will come in partnership with a third-party safety platform called Noonlight. Once installed, the feature will coordinate with both apps. When connected, Noonlight will share updates through the Tinder Timeline.

The actual panic button is located inside Noonlight. When pressed, the button will alert authorities. Afterwards, connected authorities will start texting the individual. If unanswered, they will start calling. If it comes up unanswered again, authorities will go to the individual’s location.

Starting next week, the feature will roll out through a new Tinder tab called Safety Center. The launch will start initially in the US. After the initial launch, the panic button will come to Tinder’s sister services including OkCupid and Match.com.

Besides the panic button, Tinder will also add verification methods to ensure truthful accounts. Users can get verification by recreating their account’s various photos. If the photos match, they get verified.

SEE ALSO: 3 reasons why Tinder is the best travel app

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Lifestyle

Apple shot a film entitled ‘The Daughter’ using an iPhone 11 Pro

So raw, emotional, and honest

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When tech giants create ads and films, you can expect it to be heartwarming. For instance, Apple released a Chinese New Year special, guaranteed to make you tearful and warm.

Entitled “The Daughter,” the short film tackled hope, love, and reconciliation featuring three generations of Chinese women.

It has the elements you need for a good cry — a realistic depiction of disagreement between a mother and daughter, a single parent’s determination to provide a good life, and a child’s curiosity, optimism, and innocence.

Apple Singapore brought together three talented individuals to create this emotional film. Oscar-nominated folks — director Theodore Melfi and cinematographer Lawrence Sher — worked with China’s top actress Zhou Xun in producing the film through an iPhone 11 Pro.

Once again, Apple proves iPhone’s prowess in the video department. There’s a reason why we held iPhone 11 Pro as the best smartphone for photography and videography — there’s nothing like it! Watch the video here.

SEE ALSO: Selena Gomez’s new music video was shot on an iPhone 11 Pro

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Apps

QuickShare will be Samsung’s alternative to AirDrop

It has cloud powers too

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Samsung is developing an alternative to AirDrop. It has a rather straightforward name of “Quick Share” and appears to carry all the functions of Apple’s offering.

Spotted by XDA-Developers, the feature lets Samsung users quickly share files, photos, and videos to other Samsung users. They can set to receive from their trusted contacts by selecting “Contacts Only”. Alternatively, they can receive files from any nearby user by choosing “Everyone”.

To differentiate it from Apple’s seamless file-sharing feature, Samsung will let users upload files to Samsung Cloud. Nearby SmartThings appliances will download the files and stream it to the user’s Galaxy device. However, there is a size limit of 2GB per day with this feature.

This feature will probably debut on Galaxy S20 when it launches on February 11th. It will likely remain exclusive to newer Samsung devices sporting OneUI 2.0. However, it is possible that this feature will roll out to other devices through over-the-air updates.

Samsung is not the only company developing its own nearby file sharing tool. Last August, rivals OPPO, Vivo, and Xiaomi announced an unprecedented partnership to develop an AirDrop-like feature for their devices. These are a welcome development for Android users longing for a decent AirDrop alternative.

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