Google's New Minivan Google has teamed with Fiat Chrysler to build 100 autonomous minivans. The cars won't hit the open market but instead be part of Google's self-driving fleet. The deal is reportedly the first for Google with a major carmaker, and Chrysler will provide the tech company with 100 new 2017 Pacifica Hybrid minivans which are expected to hit streets by year's end. Google is particularly excited about minivans as they may be "easier for passengers to enter and exit, particularly with features like hands-free sliding doors," the company says on a Google+ post.
We Want Drones A new advocacy group launched in both Washington, D.C. and Silicon Valley to lobby for drone use across our nation's skies. Tagged the Commercial Drone Alliance, the group already has tech firm Cisco on its board, with news media conglomerate CNN as a new member as well. The Alliance wants to promote drone adoption for business users—and help assuage public concerns of these flying machines such as, say, an Air France jet almost hit by a drone on its approach to Paris Charles de Gaulle airport last month.
Microsoft Digs Deeper Into IoT Microsoft acquired Italian IoT firm Solair, cementing its push into connected services. Solair's IoT platform is already built on Microsoft's Azure cloud already adopted by companies from espresso machine makers to Japanese electronics firms. While not consumer-facing, Solair's technology will be woven into Azure, used by brands consumers know well from Trek bikes to Travelocity.
10-10 Wins A 10-year-old just nabbed a $10,000 prize for hacking into Instagram, deleting comments on accounts. The award is part of Facebook's bug bounty program (Facebook owns Instagram) which pays for the discovery of exploits—or weaknesses—on its social media accounts. (via Iltalehti)
VR Vacation A luxe summer vacation just isn't part of the budget? How about a virtual one? GearBrain is launching a series of virtual reality travel guides to give you a taste of global locales either in lieu of going there, or a taste of what you'll see before you arrive. Our first destination? Rio de Janeiro. Grab a VR headset and join us.