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Worried Alexa is spying on you? This $99 gadget will stop it from listening

Earlier this year, we had the Paranoid. Now, it’s the Alexagate. Both are devices that disable the microphones on Alexa or Google Home devices, adding more cost to your smart-home convenience in the name of privacy.

The Alexagate, like the Paranoid Home Wave, clamps onto your Amazon Echo device and jams the microphone by emitting loud ultrasonic sounds, out of range of human hearing but perhaps not your dog’s. However, at $99, the Alexagate costs twice as much as any of the three $49 Paranoid devices, as well as the Echo Dot

That may be because, like the Clapper of infomercials past, the Alexagate can be toggled off and on by three loud claps. So if you want Alexa to dim the lights or open the door, just clap three times and voila! — Amazon’s voice assistant can start listening to you again. 

Or, you can just

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Did Quibi steal mobile technology? A rival wants the court to stop it from using ‘trade secrets’

A scene from "The Coop," an interactive murder mystery reality TV show on Eko. <span class="copyright">(Eko)</span>
A scene from “The Coop,” an interactive murder mystery reality TV show on Eko. (Eko)

The legal fight over Quibi’s mobile technology escalated on Wednesday as technology company Eko requested an injunction to block Hollywood’s newest streaming service from using a feature on its app.

Eko, a New York-based company, says that Quibi’s app has a feature that uses technology stolen from Eko. The Quibi feature, called “turnstyle,” allows users to toggle their mobile phones vertically and horizontally to gain a different perspective on videos.

Eko sued Quibi for patent infringement and misappropriation of trade secrets last month in federal court in Los Angeles, alleging that Quibi employees had access to Eko’s trade secret technology under nondisclosure agreements.

And on Wednesday, Eko said it would ask the court to stop Quibi from using Eko’s “trade secret information and from selling, offering for sale, marketing or using the Turnstyle feature.”

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