9 great reads from CNET this week

At this point, we’re all accustomed to technology that tracks us. Cookies embed on our computers, ads follow us across the web, fitness bands count our steps, cellphones know our exact location wherever we go. So what’s one more gadget keeping watch on us, right?

Well, let me introduce you to the new Sleep Sensing feature in Google’s second-generation Nest Hub. Like Santa Claus, it knows when you are sleeping, it knows when you’re awake — and it’s taking notes. Google offers some reassurances about what exactly its algorithms are noticing, including “your breathing rate and whether there was a cough or a snore,” and what conclusions they’re reaching: “They are not deducing intimacy,” Google says.

You’ll have to decide on your own comfort level with that.  

Two stories on that topic presented here are among the in-depth features and thought-provoking commentaries that appeared on CNET this week. So here you go. These are the stories you don’t want to miss:

What it’s really like to have your smart display sensing your nightly snooze.

Nest Hub 2nd generation

Chris Monroe/CNET

The search giant already knows what you’re doing for much of your waking life.

Google Nest Hub 2nd generation on a bedside table

Chris Monroe/CNET

Facebook’s focus on VR is still going strong, but the landscape has changed.

Trying out the Oculus Rift VR headset in 2013

Josh Lowensohn/CNET

With labor and regulatory battles ahead, the tech giant tried getting confrontational with lawmakers.

The Amazon logo on an orange wall.

Getty Images

Commentary: The UK seems unable to decide what kind of country it wants to be.

Illustration of the Union Jack and COVID-19 infection

Peter Zelei Images/Getty

The full report into the origins of the pandemic, conducted by WHO and China, reiterates a lab leak is “extremely unlikely” but raises more questions than it answers.

WHO-China study team lead Peter Ben Embarek at the Huanan seafood market

Hector Retamal/Getty

The president’s plan calls for $100 billion over eight years to ensure every American has broadband access.

TP Link AX1500 Wi-Fi 6 router

Ry Crist/CNET

Commentary: There’s zero reason to offset the price of a six-figure electric car.

President Joe Biden

Jim Watson/Getty Images

Commentary: It makes sense, but it also makes no sense at all.

Nintendo Switch controller and screen showing Super Mario 3D All Stars

Óscar Gutiérrez/CNET


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