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I was among the first people to try out Apple Pay the moment it came available on Monday. It was convenient, fast, and it seemingly worked without incident ... until I logged in and checked my debit card bill.

As it turns out, I've been charged twice for every single purchase I've made with Apple Pay at various stores.

A quick search of Twitter found many other people experiencing this same exact problem.

Of course with debit cards there is a huge potential problem here because if you overdraw your checking account using one you're going to get monkey-hammered for as much as $39 for each overdrawn item.

Yeah, I'm sure Apple will "fix it", but the point remains that this so-called technological marvel was supposed to make this sort of thing impossible because a given token issued by the software for a given payment would only be good once.

It looks like it was good at least twice, eh?


Update: There are reports that Bank of America was involved in some way with their clearing process -- nonetheless, as Apple's branded offering, screwups are theirs -- period.

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Want a 10-bagger?

Buy the November $10 BBRY calls for about 50 cents.

There's a rumor that Lenovo will bid for the company as early as this week -- at $15, with a $3 override available to get a deal done around $18.

I don't have a clue as to the provenance of this reported rumor, but if you're into such things that's a very cheap play as these things go.  The market doesn't appear to believe the rumor is real, given the (relatively) low implied vol on the option -- which is part of what makes it relatively attractive to consider.

Those calls are too close-in time-wise to be a decent bet on the next earnings release -- with the Passport included, which appears to be selling very well.  That makes this one a pure play on an M&A deal, which are usually (unless you have inside information) a loser for the common rube like myself.

Nonetheless if you're into such plays this one looks pretty attractive.

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Showing still out of stock, but orderable with a firm commit on price.

Done.  Now I see how long it takes to actually get it.

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Damn you're either ignorant or stupid.

After reading this article you can no longer claim ignorance, and whether or not Faceburgler still has a customer base remaining after this piece of information goes into that vacuum between your ears that should have a decent amount of density will tell me whether or not you're collectively stupid!

SAN FRANCISCO — Facebook built itself into the No. 2 digital advertising platform in the world by analyzing the vast amount of data it had on each of its 1.3 billion users to sell individually targeted ads on its social network.

Now it is going to take those targeted ads to the rest of the Internet, mounting its most direct challenge yet to Google, the leader in digital advertising with nearly one-third of the global market.

Yes, everyone expects that when you are on Facebook they're looking at what you do -- what you "like" or don't, whether you click through various articles and such, and on and on and on.

You're product to Facebook, in short -- how else can you wind up with something like that being "free"?  Nothing is ever free and that which you're not told the price of is never sold based on it being a good deal -- you're not told the price because if you were there's no way you'd allow the transaction to continue.

But now, buried in here, well...

The Facebook login is most useful on mobile devices, where traditional web tracking tools like cookies and pixel tags do not work. If a person is logged into the Facebook app on a smartphone, the company has the ability to see what other apps he or she is using and could show ads within those apps.

Got it yet?

No, your "disclosure" is not limited to what you intentionally do on Facebook.

See what you "got" when you "agreed" to the permissions that Facebook has on your mobile device as you installed it?

Welcome to Amerika comrade, where the biggest threats to you and your future are not found in the government.  They're found in data brokers who have a myriad of information that they acquired through your "voluntary" consent -- usually given without a bit of consideration as to exactly what you were consenting to!

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Yes, I said it.

The beginning of the return of BlackBerry to global relevance -- and not just in the corporate market.

If you didn't catch the Passport release yesterday you missed the most-important part of it.  It was not the device.

It was "Blend."

What is Blend?  It is a solution to one of the biggest problems you have as a person who uses multiple devices for various things -- how to keep track of all of it at once in your daily life.

Here's how it works -- after you authorize the connection your phone's text messages, emails, BBMs and similar are all accessible from your other device(s) whenever you want them to be.

This breaks new ground and solves a problem that has been a pain in the ass up until now.

Let's consider something simple -- your calendar.  Right now I have my calendar on my desktop via Thunderbird and a plug-in, and on my phone.  You probably have the same situation.  This is not only a pain in the ass it's a security problem! 

Where do you keep your calendar?  If on Android, probably with Google -- and they have it.  If on IOS, probably with Apple and they have it.

BlackBerry (and the others) can use your own cloud infrastructure for this but few people go to the trouble.  I have and do, because I don't trust any of those other guys with my data and I certainly do not want them with my calendar data.  The contact database has the same issue but is potentially even worse in terms of privacy since it contains physical addresses and phone numbers.

Let's look at email. You can have multiple places that can "see" one email box, in some cases.  But not in all.  And among those that allow it some don't do it very well.  Again I can and have solved this, but most people just deal with the constraints -- or have different email accounts available in different places.

Finally we have SMS and other instant messenger programs; most of these have no access at all from your desktop, laptop or tablet.  This is particularly true for text messages.

Now BlackBerry comes out with Blend.

Blend obviates all of this by making your device the locus of all of these communication forms.  When you're away from your desk your phone is with you.  When you're with your desk (or laptop, tablet or other device) those functions are available on your desktop via a secure tunnel between the devices.

This is a game-changer for not just mobile professionals but anyone who has multiple devices -- and these days, that's most of us.  It is especially true for those of us who use different makes of these devices -- for example, an iPad and a Windows PC.  How many of you have pulled your phone out of your pocket while working because it beeped?  How many of you have left it on your desk by accident after doing so?  Most everyone, I suspect.  Now you don't have to pull the phone out of your pocket to interact with your contacts, calendar and messaging -- at all.  Nor do you need to deal with the complexity of linking all of these devices together for those functions; you only need one device that provides those services to you, your phone, and that phone is with you pretty-much everywhere you go.

Nobody else has this functionality and nobody is going to be able to easily do it either as only BlackBerry has, at present, the infrastructure and internal data path design to handle this and the security that is required to do so across both (potentially hostile) WiFi and carrier networks in a seamless fashion -- but without the ability of anyone to intercept it.

Right now this is available on the Passport because BlackBerry has their software coded to prohibit it from working on the other, older devices.  That is going to change with 10.3.1 in a couple of months; this same functionality will then work on all the legacy BB10 devices as well such as the Z10, Q10 and Z30.

Integrated messaging, calendars and contacts are a problem that none of the other vendors do particularly well, especially across vendor environments.  If you have an Apple phone and want to have all of that on your Windows PC you have a problem.  Ditto the other way around with Google's offerings on Android.

Now you have an alternative that integrates it all no matter which "brand" you prefer for a Tablet or PC.

Is this a game-changer?  I believe it is, and I also believe it's only the start of what BlackBerry has up their sleeve.  I know how BlackBerry is doing this and it's both elegant and going to be very hard for the other guys to attempt to replicate -- but not at all difficult for BlackBerry to make available on various brands of tablet and desktop, as has been seen by the release of it on IOS, MacOS, Android and Windows at initial release.

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