Technology News – RadioShack, T-Mobile and Amazon Drones

technologyWeekly Technology News!

Well, I’m gonna be changing things up a bit on this, I’m starting to get backlogged, and things are slipping through the cracks. From here on out, I’m just going to be posting when I get 3-5 items OK?

NLRB: Some of T-Mobile Labor Policies Are Illegal – The National Labor Relations Board ruled that certain labor policies of T-Mobile US were unfair, including some practices that discouraged workers from organizing. NLRB Judge Christine Dibble said in an order on Wednesday that several provisions in T-Mobile’s employee handbook, code of conduct, confidentiality agreement and form asking employee’s to comply with unlawful work rules were unfair labor practices. Dibble ordered T-Mobile to “revise or rescind the unlawful rules, and advise its employees in writing” about the violations. The case against T-Mobile’s policies was led by the Communications Workers of America, who said T-Mobile’s policies restrained employees from organizing.

AmazonAmazon Gets FAA Okay to Test Drones Outdoors – Amazon won Federal Aviation Administration approval Thursday to test drones in the U.S., after a dispute with the federal agency over permission to fly unmanned aircraft outdoors. Amazon has been testing delivery drones inside for several years but hadn’t gotten permission from the FAA to do outdoor flights. Rules proposed last month wouldn’t allow companies like Amazon to do remote deliveries via drone, but the company hasn’t given up on the idea. Amazon drones will have to fly during the day below 400 feet and must remain in sight of the pilot, the FAA said. Like other companies that have gotten FAA approval, Amazon will have to provide monthly data reports to the FAA about the number of flights, any unusual malfunctions or loss of communication with the aircraft.

RadioShack’s Future to Be Decided at Bankruptcy Auction – All of RadioShack’s stores may be closed down for good after Monday’s bankruptcy auction if Standard General LP does not prevail in the bid war. The hedge fund, which is also a creditor of the electronics company, is the only interested party that does not intend to completely shut down RadioShack if it gets ownership. Standard General reached an agreement with Sprint and offered $145.5 million for the remaining assets of the retailer. RadioShack has been aggressively closing down stores, and with the help of liquidation firms, has reduced its 4,000 stores by nearly half.

attAT&T’s de la Vega Highlights AT&T’s IoT Initiative – Delta’s Sky Magazine published a profile of AT&T CEO Ralph de la Vega and his role in the company’s efforts to diversify. De la Vega is optimistic that this high-tech bet will pay off, saying “We were the first carrier to invest early in growth areas such as connected cars and the Internet of things. Those areas are going to continue to grow. For the Internet of things, the forecast for 2020 is like 25 billion connected things. We think it’s a good opportunity.” In addition to cars and homes, AT&T is aggressively expanding into other realms of the Internet of things and now connects 2,200 different types of devices on its global network – from wearables to shipping containers to trash cans that alert waste management companies when they’re full.

Sources: The New York Times, online; Seattle Times, online;  Washington Post, online; CNET; Engadget.The Wall Street Journal, online.Gizmodo; Re/code; The Verge.Sky Magazine.

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