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Tech Week: The Internet 'Slowdown' And Apple's New Crop

Apple CEO Tim Cook introduces Apple Watch on Tuesday in Cupertino, Calif.
Marcio Jose Sanchez
Apple CEO Tim Cook introduces Apple Watch on Tuesday in Cupertino, Calif.

Each week we take a look back at the week that was in tech news and headlines. And this one was chock-full with product news, with the reveal of Apple Watch — Apple's first new product line since 2010. Let's get to it ...


Personal Styling, In A Package: Here at All Tech, we led off the week with the rising popularity of algorithmically enhanced personal shopping and styling services that send you fresh outfits through the mail. I and my editor Uri Berliner took the services on a test drive and you can check out the results.

Fire Sale On Fire Phone: Amazon dropped the price of its much-hyped Fire phone to 99 cents, an effort to move more units after some lackluster sales. Our teammate Aarti Shahani explains that when it comes to making the smartphone experience more personal, "there's a delicate line between feeling intimate and feeling trapped."

The Big Conversation

Internet 'Slowdown': On Wednesday, major websites including Etsy, Netflix, Mozilla and tens of thousands more took part in an online protest against a proposed FCC measure that could create "fast lanes" for content on the Internet. New York Magazine's social science blog explains why the campaign, in which sites displayed banners to symbolize a slower Internet, was psychologically effective and Vox reminds us how much Americans hate Big Cable. Buoyed by slowdown day, the net neutrality issue has driven more comments to the FCC than any other issue.

Apple Watch, Apple Pay: The Apple Watch is coming in 2015, and bigger iPhones are coming next week. But we think the most potentially game-changing announcement from Apple is Apple Pay, a credit cardless mobile payment system that will allow you to make purchases with a wave of your phone. The big question is whether businesses will join up and play nice with Apple's system. NPR's Aarti Shahani looked at the security implications, while Tim Fitzsimons reported that Apple Pay could disrupt the card-centered payments industry.


Quartz: A Memorial for the Classic iPod, Which Changed Apple's Fortunes Forever

In all the bluster of the new product announcements, we missed that Apple quietly retired the 13-year-old iPod classic.

Wired: Minecraft Fans Spooked by Talk of Acquisition by Microsoft

Microsoft reportedly is close to a $2 billion deal to buy the parent of the popular build-your-own-world game Minecraft. Fans are worried that the company that brought us Word and Excel will ruin all the fun.

The Harvard Crimson: Computer Science Course Logs Record-Breaking Enrollment Numbers

Harvard's introduction to computer science course attracted a record 818 undergrads this semester, making it the largest class offered at the college in the past 5 years. Maybe computers are the future after all.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Elise Hu is a host-at-large based at NPR West in Culver City, Calif. Previously, she explored the future with her video series, Future You with Elise Hu, and served as the founding bureau chief and International Correspondent for NPR's Seoul office. She was based in Seoul for nearly four years, responsible for the network's coverage of both Koreas and Japan, and filed from a dozen countries across Asia.