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Nokia sets out major job cuts but steps up 5G push

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Finnish telecoms giant Nokia says a big cost-cutting program unveiled today will save it €700m ($799m) by the end of 2020 and result in substantial job cuts.

Alongside the cost reductions, Nokia is stepping up efforts in 5G mobile radio products and creating a new Enterprise business unit to bring together fast-growing activities under current chief strategy officer Kathrin Buvac.

“Our early progress in 5G is extremely strong, we continue to increase our investment in this critical technology, and our win rate for new deals suggests that we are in a very good competitive position,” Rajeev Suri, president and CEO, said in a statement.

Reporting a 27 percent drop in profits in its latest quarterly period ending September 30, from €668m a year ago to €487m in line with expectations, Nokia said cost savings will come from areas including significantly reduced central support functions, cross-company activities, R&D in legacy products, and real estate.

According to Nokia, these planned changes are expected to result in a net reduction of employees globally.

“Even if these actions are right for our business, we do not take them lightly given the expected impact on our employees,” Suri said.

SEE: IT pro’s guide to the evolution and impact of 5G technology (free PDF)

The company has already been cutting costs resulting from its 2016 €15.6bn merger with French networking giant Alcatel-Lucent. Cost reductions from that deal are due to amount to €1.2bn and be completed this year.

“With the successful Alcatel-Lucent integration and cost-saving program soon to be behind us, we are taking steps to accelerate the execution of our strategy and sharpen our customer focus,” Suri said.

Nokia’s third-quarter net sales came in at €5.5bn ($6.27bn), slightly above expectations.

More than half of Nokia’s profits still come from its patent holdings, a legacy of the company’s mobile-phone past. In that context, Nokia also today announced that its patent license deal with Samsung is being extended.

Nokia has just reported its Q3 and January-September 2018 and non-IFRS results.


Image: Nokia

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With the pending merger of Alcatel-Lucent and Nokia, the CEO of the French company has come under fire by local governing bodies after it was revealed he is set to pocket €14 million when the deal is finalised.

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Zoom Just Added New AI-Powered Features, Here’s What They Do

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Zoom is also adding an AI-assisted auto-framing system called Intelligent Director to its Zoom Room system. This one relies on a multi-camera setup and picks up the best camera angle to depict a person in a video conference. The company says it paves the way for a “more equitable meeting experience for remote and in-person attendees.” Interestingly, Zoom is borrowing the idea of huddles from Slack, which itself introduced video chats to huddles last year that look a lot like Zoom. Introduced earlier today, Zoom Huddles is a video-centric virtual coworking space with a healthy bunch of collaboration features.

Zoom also wants to offer its very own email inbox and calendar so that users don’t have to jump between the video calling platform and other apps. The result of those ambitions is Zoom Mail, which is now available to all users as a client that can be connected to your existing Gmail or Microsoft inbox. Additionally, if you want Zoom’s very own email service, the company is also offering something called Zoom Mail Service with its very own hosting, but it is limited to paid customers only. Then there’s Zoom Calendar, which lives in the main sidebar and aims to replace rivals from Microsoft and Google that are currently a part of your workflow.

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How To Schedule Or Automate iPhone’s Always-On Display

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Apple’s iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max are the first iPhones with an always-on display. The setting is enabled by default in currently-available iOS builds, but you cannot schedule or automate iPhone’s always-on display. That changes with the latest iOS 16.4 beta, adding an option to automate the feature.

That sounds exciting, but here’s a caveat. Since iOS 16.4 is available as a release candidate to registered developers or public testers, you might find getting your hands on it challenging. Even if you decide to download it to automate your iPhone’s always-on display, you might experience some performance issues or bugs, ranging from worse battery life to iOS crashes. 

Nevertheless, if you’re sure about trying the new features, head to the Apple Beta Software Program page and follow the instructions to install the latest iOS 16.4 beta, which has a new feature to schedule always-on display on the iPhones.

Automate always-on display using Focus Filters

Two ways to automate iPhone 14 Pro’s always-on display in iOS 16.4 are via Focus Filters and Shortcuts. First, let’s discuss the steps in enabling the feature via Focus Filters.

  1. First, head to the Settings app on your iPhone and tap Focus.
  2. Create a new Focus by pressing the plus icon in the top right corner. Select Custom from the available options and name the Focus mode. Tap on Customize Focus and head to the next screen.
  3. Swipe down and select Add Filter under Focus Filters.
  4. Under System Filters, select Always On Display. Ensure the Filter is enabled and tap Add in the top right corner.
  5. Now, under Set A Schedule, do one of the following things.
    1. Enable Smart Activation, which applies the Focus Filter at relevant times of the day based on your app usage, location, and other metrics.
    2. Select Add Schedule and set when you want the Focus Filter to be active, enabling the always-on display.

You’ve successfully linked the always-on display to the Focus mode, which will now be active during the schedule you set. 

Set up a Shortcut to activate always-on display

You can also connect your iPhone’s always-on display to a Shortcut.

  1. Head to the Shortcuts app and press the plus icon in the top right corner.
  2. Select Add Action and locate and select the Set Always On Display option through the search bar at the top.
  3. By default, the Turn and On buttons activate the always-on display when you access the Shortcut.
  4. Tap Done in the top right corner.
  5. Accessing this Shortcut will trigger the always-on display.

Now that you know how to schedule or automate always-on display on your iPhone, here are a few things to remember. Currently, the feature is only available in iOS 16.4 beta, so regular users can’t access the feature. Although Apple is expected to release iOS 16.4 as a stable build for everyone soon, we can’t give an exact date. Second, using the always-on display might deplete your iPhone’s battery faster than usual, which is normal.

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Revamped Microsoft Teams App For Windows Is Leaner, Sleeker

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Aside from the sluggish performance, older versions of Microsoft Teams have also received criticism for their rather bland, unimpressive looks. Thanks to a major design revamp, Microsoft is changing all that. The new look — besides being pleasing to the eyes — has been infused with several intuitive elements that were missing in the older version. Some of the significant changes include the simplification of the navigation and settings menu, and the ability to customize the interface with new themes, colors, and backgrounds.

The new Microsoft Teams app borrows a lot of design cues from Windows 11, a move intended to make it feel like a native Windows app. The infamous purple color generally associated with Teams is less prominent now. Microsoft has improved the visual experience of group chats thanks to the newly added group profile pics and group theming options.

One of the major pain points of using Microsoft Teams was its inability to stay logged into multiple workspaces or accounts. The newest version of Teams fixes that. This ensures that users can stay logged into multiple workspaces simultaneously. More importantly, they will continue to receive notifications from all the spaces they are part of. These new features align with Microsoft’s efforts to enhance Team’s collaboration features.

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