At long last, it looks like Samsung has finally pinned down what made all those Galaxy Note 7 phones spontaneously combust. According to the Bloomberg, Samsung has determined that the batteries they themselves made for the phone didn’t fit properly, causing them to overheat and fail.
When Samsung, rightfully thinking their batteries were at fault, quickly shifted to another battery maker, Amperex Technology, they needed so many batteries so fast that it appears maybe some quality checks at Amperex didn’t catch a manufacturing issue in the new batch of batteries, and then those phones started to pop as well.
After that, well, you know the story. Samsung recalled the phones, then everyone recalled the phones, and for those that just couldn’t bring themselves to return them, they’re now all pretty much bricked. So what now? Samsung says they have instituted an eight-step battery safety check protocol and are focusing on their next big debut, the Galaxy S8, which should be revealed in March… if the company brass haven’t been sent to jail by then.
Keep those hands at 10 and 2
Quite the opposite feeling is spreading through electric carmaker Tesla today after the completion of a Federal investigation into a fatal crash in 2016 involving that companies “autopilot” driver-assist system. A spokesman for the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says Tesla’s Autopilot tech is not to blame for the crash and furthermore, it’s not “defective.”
Joshua Brown was killed last May when his Model S sedan crashed into a semi in Florida. Nitsa said Brown had at least seven seconds to take the wheel and hit the brakes before the crash, but did neither. Tesla said their investigation into the crash showed that the autopilot system was not able to distinguish the large white semi-trailer from the background sky, and therefore didn’t “see” the oncoming truck before turning into it.
But Tesla has repeatedly stated that drivers need to keep their eyes on the road when autopilot is in use, and that the system is not fully autonomous, it’s there to ASSIST drivers, not do all the driving for them. Brown was an unabashed Tesla fan and posted numerous videos online of his Model S while driving with Autopilot engaged. Tesla says it will continue developing and improving Autopilot with the ultimate goal of full autonomy in the future.
Your income may vary******
Uber is reaching for its wallet after the FTC said it recruited drivers by overstating what they could potentially make – by a lot. The FTC says Uber claimed full-time drivers in New York City could make $90,000 a year, when the actual figure was about $61,000 a year. Same thing for Bay Area Uber pilots, who hoped to make over $70,000 a year but more than likely topped out at around $53,000 – which probably barely covers their rent.
Anyway, Uber has agreed to shell out $20 million to compensate drivers, while, of course, admitting no wrongdoing. Uber says it is pleased to have reached a settlement with the FTC and they’ll continue to offer people the chance to earn money on their own schedule. We suggest drivers read the fine print, and maybe keep some grains of salt handy.
- Tesla wants more employees to participate in Autopilot Hardware 3 testing
- Uber wants to restart self-driving car tests in Pennsylvania
- Sit back, relax, and enjoy a ride through the history of self-driving cars
- Tesla drivers in N. America will soon be able to put lane changing on autopilot
- With benefits — and risks — software updates are coming to the car