Nation & World
Apple expands Apple Pay as one of upgrades
Apple at its annual software conference Monday introduced upgrades for the mobile and computer systems. It expanded Apple Pay, its mobile wallet program. The mobile wallet will include a loyalty and rewards programs for merchants. Apple also demonstrated a news-reading mobile app called News, which allows users to load articles. The new version of iOS, Apple’s mobile operating system, focuses on improving existing features, like Siri, Apple’s voice-controlled assistant. The updated assistant can respond to commands like “Show me photos for last August” to load the specific photo roll taken that month. The company introduced a split-screen mode for the iPad that allows multiple apps to run side-by-side, a big change from the current interface, which loads one app that takes up the entire screen. Apple also will start offering a new streaming-music service for $9.99 a month at the end of the month. A new Mac system, called El Capitan, focuses on refining existing features like Apple’s Safari web browser and its search tool, Spotlight. The Web browser now includes a button that mutes sound that unexpectedly starts playing from a webpage.
Government says collision avoidance should be standard in all new vehicles
Government safety officials are calling on automakers to make systems that automatically brake or warn drivers to avoid crashes standard equipment on new cars.The National Transportation Safety Board said in report released Monday that 80 percent of about 1,700 forward-collision deaths and a half million injuries a year could be prevented or lessened by the technology. The report said the board has made 12 recommendations over the past 20 years aimed at encouraging adoption of forward collision avoidance systems, but progress has been “very limited.” Only four out of 684 passenger vehicle models in 2014 included a complete collision avoidance system as a standard feature.
Reynolds American says purchase of rival will be complete Friday
Starbucks amps up Frappucino game
Starbucks is tempting Frappuccino fans with six new offerings it’s calling “fan flavors” as the coffee giant aims to perk up summer sales of the blended drinks. Frappuccinos have been available nationally since 1995. Back then, there were only two flavors: Coffee and Mocha. The six flavors introduced Monday are: Red Velvet Cake, Cotton Candy, Cinnamon Roll, Lemon Bar, Caramel Cocoa Cluster and Cupcake.
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