TIME How-To

Here’s How to Send Money Over Gmail

Didn't notice that little dollar sign at the bottom of every Gmail message? You're not alone

Gmail users in the United Kingdom may notice a new attachment icon today shaped like a British pound sign which does exactly what it suggests: attaches money to an email.

American users need not be envious. Google already released the feature this side of the pond more than a year ago, even if it was easy to overlook that mysterious little dollar sign at the bottom of every message.

Here’s a refresher on how it works:

1) Open a new message in Gmail and click on the dollar sign icon beneath the text box.

2) A pop-up window will appear prompting the user to link an existing credit or debit card to Google Wallet. Already have Google Wallet? Skip ahead to step 3. Otherwise, grab your credit card and fill out the billing information to set up an account.

3) Type in the amount you want to send to the recipient, hit “send,” and it will land as an attachment in the recipient’s inbox, regardless of whether they’re using Gmail or an alternative email service.

4) Here’s the rub: Recipients also need an existing Google Wallet account to receive the payment. The money automatically uploads to their Google Wallet balance, or it can be transferred directly into a banking account.

5) Swallow the fee. Google tacks on an extra 2.9% fee for credit or debit card payments, but the user can avoid the fee by sending money directly from a banking account or by living in the UK, where no fees apply. The receiver gets off scot free.

That’s it, an incredibly handy feature which is only limited by the number of users on Google Wallet and their keen eye for mysterious icons.

TIME Web

Alleged Owner of ‘Revenge Porn’ Site Banned From Posting Nude Images

TIME.com stock photos Computer Keyboard Typing Hack
Elizabeth Renstrom for TIME

Craig Brittain allegedly posted pictures of naked women and charged them to have the photos removed

A man who allegedly ran a “revenge porn” website that hosted naked pictures of women posted without their permission is getting his operation shut down.

Craig Brittain acquired a horde of intimate photos and posted them on his website, according to the Federal Trade Commission. The FTC says women who wanted their photos removed had to pay between $200 and $500 to purported third-party services which were actually operated by Brittain.

Now the consumer protection agency is banning Brittain from publicly sharing more nude photographs or videos of women without their consent. It’s also requiring him to destroy the images and personal contact information he collected while running the site.

Brittain acquired the photos mostly by soliciting disgruntled men who provided photographs along with the subject’s first and last name, date of birth, town and state, and a link to the subject’s Facebook profile and phone number, the FTC says. He also allegedly instituted a “bounty system” that awarded $100 or more for photos of specific people.

“This behavior is not only illegal but reprehensible,” said Jessica Rich, director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection. “I am pleased that as a result of this settlement, the illegally collected images and information will be deleted, and this individual can never return to the so-called ‘revenge porn’ business.”

TIME apps

iPhone and Android Finally Have a Full-Featured Outlook App

It's Microsoft's latest move to make cross-platform apps

Microsoft freed Outlook email from the confines of the office PC on Thursday, releasing for the first time fully-featured Outlook apps for iPhones, iPads and Android devices.

The new Outlook apps are now available for download through Apple’s iTunes and the Google Play store. While Microsoft previously offered versions of Outlook for iOS and Android, neither had the power of this new software.

Outlook for iOS and Android Microsoft

Microsoft’s move comes on the heels of its decision to release a motherlode of its flagship software from Word to Excel as mobile-friendly apps that work across a range of devices.

“To date, we’ve seen more than 80 million downloads of Office on iPhone and iPad worldwide,” Microsoft said in a public statement. “We have received tremendous customer request for Outlook across all devices, so we are thrilled to fulfill this for our customers.”

The new Outlook mobile app includes familiar features, such as swipe gestures for rapid archiving and machine learning algorithms that learn which emails the user is most likely to read and pushes them to the top of the inbox. What sets the app apart is a built-in calendar, enabling the user to schedule an appointment within the app, rather than laboriously copy and paste event details in a second, calendar app.

Microsoft on Thursday also released new versions of its Word, Excel and PowerPoint apps for Android tablets.

TIME Research

IBM Thinks it Can Make Your Food Safer: Will it Work?

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IBM plans to sequence the microbiomes of food ingredients to prevent outbreaks earlier

Our food system is by no means bulletproof when it comes to pathogens. In just the past year, the United States saw major outbreaks of listeria in caramel apples and salmonella in nut butters, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that 48 million Americans suffer from some kind of food-borne diseases annually. Meanwhile, food-borne illness results in $9 billion in medical costs and another $75 billion in contaminated food that’s recalled and tossed out every year. Regulatory agencies have acknowledged that more needs to be done.

One strategy comes from IBM, which announced on Thursday that it’s partnering with Mars on a project called the Sequencing the Food Supply Chain Consortium. Their goal, which will likely take at least three years to accomplish, is to sequence the makeup of various foods and then enter that information into a database. The thinking is that if they can establish, at the molecular level, what a given ingredient is supposed to look like, systems can be put into place to catch brewing problems before contaminated foods make it to your table.

“The hypothesis is that [this process] offers you a microscope into what’s happening in that [food] environment,” says Jeff Welser, vice president of IBM Research. “Any deviation from that might indicate there’s a problem.” IBM says it will take into account variations that could occur in ingredients based on where in the world the product is coming from, and what time of year it is.

“A key challenge for food safety experts today is that typically when they test food they only really have a chance of finding what they set out to look for,” says David Crean, global head of technical food safety development at Mars. “If they are testing for Salmonella, they won’t find Listeria.”

The process is highly time- and data-intensive, and not necessarily something companies will want to put their foods and ingredients through constantly, but IBM thinks the science could be developed into a simple test. “You ought to be able to do this when you’re doing normal testing during the day, like for E.coli. The goal is to find the markers that give you a safety-check barcode, if you will, and if you see a change then it lets you know we need to do further testing,” says Welser.

Within three to five years the consortium estimates it will have more companies involved as well as some version of the testing process available for commercial use. They plan to engage with regulatory agencies like the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) when it’s determined the process works well.

The FDA says it is prioritizing food safety, and in 2011 the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) was signed into law by President Obama. The FDA says it’s the most sweeping reform of food safety laws in over 70 years and the goal is to shift focus from responding to contamination to prevention. The FDA is supportive of whole genome sequencing as a way to find bacteria in food.

“Overall this seems to be a great basic science project,” says Jonathan A. Eisen, a professor at University of California, Davis. “Personally I believe we need major efforts in characterizing the communities found in and on food, and that a full characterization of the microbes in the facilities where food is produced would be great. This is the first I have heard of a company planning to do this on a large scale.” Eisen is not involved in the consortium, but has researched the suite of microbes in food.

The concept is ambitious, but could be a new way to keep our foods safer than they are currently.

Read next: Most Americans and Scientists Tend to Disagree, Survey Finds

Listen to the most important stories of the day.

TIME Web

This Is One of the Easiest Ways to Make a GIF

Try Imgur's new GIF-making tool

Looking to turn a video into an animated GIF like all the cool kids on the Internet? Image-hosting service Imgur just released a super-easy tool to make that happen.

Imgur’s Video-to-GIF tool works like this:

1. Drop in a link to a video somewhere else on the web, like YouTube.

2. Pick where you’d like your GIF to start and end. Remember, longer GIFs result in bigger files.

3. Let Imgur process for a bit.

4. Boom, you’ve got a GIF file you can share anywhere on the web. Sometimes it actually gives you a .GIFV file, which result in better-quality looping videos at smaller file sizes than regular old GIFs.

Here’s a quick GIF of Iron Man and The Incredible Hulk clobbering one another for good measure.

Avengers, assemble (GIFS)!

TIME Web

This Is the Future of Humanity in One Disturbing Photo

Sitting, eating and virtual reality

I have a dream: That one day, all women, men and children will live in a virtual world devoid of social connection and existential meaning, suckled by a constant stream of saccharine liquids and delectable quasi-nutrients, and preoccupied by an unending wave of sensory distractions and entertainments.

Actually, that’s more of a nightmare, and we may be about to live it. Thanks to the increasing ubiquity of virtual reality headsets and the general physical ease of daily life, it’s going to be more and more common to see people living like the guy in this photo posted on Reddit. (“So I got a glimpse of the future of this morning“)

So I got a glimpse of the future this morning...

The problem is, we all want virtual reality headsets, and we all want to eat delicious food, and we often want to sit around if we can. But will all those temptations lead to a dystopian nightmare?

The answer is ‘yes,’ according to one interpretation in this prophetic scene from Disney’s Wall-E, in which the befuddled robot sees firsthand a physically satiated but spiritually bankrupt humanity. (Hat/tip to Sploid on connecting the dots here.)

TIME Companies

Amazon Wants to Power Your Work Email

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A picture shows the logo of the online retailer Amazon dispalyed on computer screens in London on December 11, 2014. Leon Neal—AFP/Getty Images

Amazon deliveries go from electronics to emails

Amazon has launched a work email service aimed at undermining Microsoft’s dominance in office messaging.

The e-commerce giant is introducing WorkMail, allowing users to send and receive emails, and manage contacts and share calendars all stored on Amazon’s cloud servers.

WorkMail won’t replace Microsoft Outlook’s software interface for businesses that make the switch. Instead, it changes the background technology that powers corporate email. It will push messages through Amazon’s encrypted computer networks at a monthly cost of $4 per inbox.

Amazon said that with WorkMail customers won’t have to buy servers or manage software, upgrades, or patches. Instead, they just have to pay for each inbox.

“Customers have repeatedly asked us for a business email and calendaring service that is more cost-effective and simpler to manage than their on-premises solution,” said Peter De Santis, vice president of AWS Compute Services, said in a press release. “We built Amazon WorkMail to address these requests.”

An analyst with Baird Equity Research, Colin Sebastian told the Wall Street Journal that email services could bring Amazon $1 billion each year, based on estimate of sales for Google’s business software.

TIME Innovation

This Airline Is Giving Passengers Virtual Reality Headsets

Virtual Reality
An attendee during the 2015 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, Nevada, U.S., on Tuesday, Jan. 6, 2015. Patrick T. Fallon—Patrick T. Fallon

Some Qantas passengers will get Samsung's Gear VR headset

Your next in-flight movie could be a lot more immersive.

Australian airline Qantas is partnering with Samsung to bring the electronics company’s virtual reality headsets to some of its passengers. First-class fliers will soon be able to use Samsung’s Gear VR headset during flights to explore virtual reality worlds. The headsets will let customers digitally explore the Qantas airport, visit the top of the Sydney Harbor Bridge and travel through the Australian wilderness.

In addition to in-flight VR, Qantas fliers will be able to use the headsets in first-class airport lounges in Sydney and Melbourne.

In a press release, a Qantas executive also promised that passengers will be able to access “the virtual worlds of their favorite Hollywood blockbusters,” though there are currently very few films release in a VR format. For now, the headsets are being offered in a limited three-month trial.

TIME Smartphones

You Asked: How Can I Save My Phone’s Battery When it’s Cold Out?

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Wintertime can be a big drain on your phone's battery

If you’ve ever had a hunch your phone’s charge doesn’t last as long in the wintertime, you’re not crazy: Cold temperatures have a nasty effect on batteries.

The scientific explanation for this lies in how batteries work. Basically, their job is to store chemical energy until you need them to power or charge your device. Then they go about converting that chemical energy into electrical energy. However, cold weather causes internal resistance, slowing down the conversion process and resulting in less overall capacity. The kinds of batteries used in most phones are particularly vulnerable to this effect.

Translation? Just like wintertime makes it harder to get your car to start, your phone won’t last as long in cold weather. However, all is not lost — there are some ways to keep your phone as warm and happy as a skier sipping hot cocoa after a day on the slopes.

First, keep your phone as close to your body as you can. Take it out of your backpack or purse and stick it in your jeans or, better yet, in the inside pocket of an insulated base layer. That’ll help your body heat keep things warm. Second, consider picking up an insulated case. These can be a little on the bulky side, but it’s better to have a cumbersome case than a dead phone.

And finally, avoid taking your phone out in really frigid temperatures — the ambient air will suck out your phone’s heat quicker than you can send a text to Mom.

TIME Smartphones

Apple Might Finally Be Beating Samsung in Smartphone Sales

But some analysts say it's a tie

Apple and Samsung have long been bitter rivals in the smartphone market, with each able to claim an advantage over the other: The higher cost of Apple’s iPhones have helped the company enjoy wider profit margins, while Samsung has historically clobbered Apple in terms of the number of devices shipped.

However, that may no longer be the case.

Apple sold a record 74.5 million iPhones last quarter, it said as part of its earnings report Tuesday. A day later, Samsung said it sold somewhere between 71 and 76 million smartphones. That means there’s a decent chance Apple is now beating Samsung not only in profit margins, but also in number of devices shipped.

Still, some analysts are sowing doubt over whether that’s actually the case. One research firm, Counterpoint Research, says Apple is now on top: It says Samsung only shipped 73.8 million devices last quarter. Ben Barjarin, an analyst with Creative Strategies and TIME columnist, also gave the nod to Apple.

But another analyst, Strategy Analytics, has taken the middle road and called it a tie, saying Apple and Samsung both shipped 74.5 million devices, giving both companies an equal 19.6% share of the global smartphone market.

A tie game means we’re headed to overtime. Whether Apple can hold on to its maybe-possibly-kind-of lead over Samsung depends on how its newest iPhone models perform as their shine wears off. Apple’s sales numbers last quarter got a big boost from the introduction of the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, particularly in China, where the bigger devices were an equally big hit. If history is any indication, Apple won’t refresh its phone lineup for several months at the earliest, while Samsung is reportedly set to drop a new flagship model early this year to replace the Galaxy S5. If that as-yet-unannounced phone is a winner, it could put Samsung right back on top.

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