Google Home now lowers the volume of casting audio when using Google Assistant

If you’ve ever tried to ask your Google Home a question when it’s casting audio to a TV or speaker, you’re probably aware that it can have trouble understanding you when the audio is too loud. I’ve run into this countless times, so I’m happy to report that Google is now working to make this a much more seamless operation.

Now, when your Google Home is casting videos or music to a TV or speaker, the Assistant will automatically lower the volume so it can better understand what you’re saying. For instance, if you’re casting a YouTube video to your television from your Google Home and want to ask it a question (such as “turn the volume down”), your TV will lower when you say “Ok Google” and stay at that level until you’re done talking to the Assistant. This feature should now be enabled by default.

Related: How to sign up for the Google Home Preview Program

I’ve been able to make this work on my Google Home running on preview firmware version 97091, though it sounds like some users don’t have access to the feature yet. If you’d like to see if it’s live for you, navigate to the devices section in your Google Home app, and you should see an option called Lower volume when listening.

However, this feature won’t work in all cases. Here are the list of exceptions for when Google Home won’t lower the volume:

  • If you’re casting music on a group of Cast devices.
  • If you started casting content on a TV or speaker using a mobile phone and not your voice.
  • When casting content on an Android TV devices with fixed volume (e.g. Nexus Player)
  • When casting content on a Chromecast built-in speaker or TV, or Android TV running Chromecast firmware version older than 1.25. Here’s how to check your firmware version.
  • For TV shows and movies when playback is done at 5.1 surround sound.

This should make talking to your Assistant much easier. Are you seeing this feature yet? Let us know in the comments below.

Marshall Wace North America L.P. Lowers Stake in Motorola Solutions, Inc. (MSI)

Marshall Wace North America L.P. decreased its stake in Motorola Solutions, Inc. (NYSE:MSI) by 24.9% during the second quarter, according to its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The institutional investor owned 78,055 shares of the communications equipment provider’s stock after selling 25,836 shares during the period. Marshall Wace North America L.P.’s holdings in Motorola Solutions were worth $6,790,000 as of its most recent filing with the SEC.

A number of other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also modified their holdings of MSI. Iat Reinsurance Co. LTD. acquired a new position in shares of Motorola Solutions during the first quarter valued at about $123,000. Mckinley Capital Management LLC Delaware purchased a new stake in shares of Motorola Solutions during the first quarter valued at $135,000. Exane Derivatives increased its stake in shares of Motorola Solutions by 163.6% in the second quarter. Exane Derivatives now owns 1,613 shares of the communications equipment provider’s stock valued at $140,000 after buying an additional 1,001 shares during the last quarter. Smithfield Trust Co. increased its stake in shares of Motorola Solutions by 2.7% in the second quarter. Smithfield Trust Co. now owns 2,003 shares of the communications equipment provider’s stock valued at $173,000 after buying an additional 53 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Ropes Wealth Advisors LLC increased its stake in shares of Motorola Solutions by 30.8% in the first quarter. Ropes Wealth Advisors LLC now owns 2,130 shares of the communications equipment provider’s stock valued at $184,000 after buying an additional 502 shares during the last quarter. 87.68% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

Motorola Solutions, Inc. (MSI) opened at 86.88 on Monday. The stock has a 50 day moving average of $88.86 and a 200-day moving average of $84.95. The firm has a market cap of $14.13 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 22.91 and a beta of 0.32. Motorola Solutions, Inc. has a 52-week low of $71.24 and a 52-week high of $93.75.

Motorola Solutions (NYSE:MSI) last posted its earnings results on Thursday, August 3rd. The communications equipment provider reported $1.06 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.99 by $0.07. The company had revenue of $1.50 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $1.46 billion. Motorola Solutions had a negative return on equity of 93.44% and a net margin of 10.38%. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 4.7% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the previous year, the company earned $1.03 EPS. On average, analysts expect that Motorola Solutions, Inc. will post $5.29 EPS for the current year.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, October 13th. Investors of record on Friday, September 15th will be given a $0.47 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, September 14th. This represents a $1.88 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.16%. Motorola Solutions’s dividend payout ratio is presently 49.60%.

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MSI has been the topic of several analyst reports. Northcoast Research raised shares of Motorola Solutions from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $100.00 target price on the stock in a report on Tuesday, May 30th. Citigroup Inc. reaffirmed a “buy” rating and issued a $102.00 target price (up previously from $93.00) on shares of Motorola Solutions in a report on Friday, May 5th. Gabelli raised shares of Motorola Solutions from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Monday, May 8th. BMO Capital Markets reiterated a “buy” rating on shares of Motorola Solutions in a research note on Friday, June 23rd. Finally, BidaskClub upgraded shares of Motorola Solutions from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Tuesday, June 27th. Five analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and ten have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. Motorola Solutions has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $94.33.

In related news, EVP Bruce W. Brda sold 25,299 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, August 7th. The stock was sold at an average price of $89.11, for a total value of $2,254,393.89. Following the completion of the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 23,829 shares in the company, valued at approximately $2,123,402.19. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. Also, EVP Eduardo F. Conrado sold 6,998 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, August 8th. The shares were sold at an average price of $89.13, for a total value of $623,731.74. Following the completion of the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 22,858 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $2,037,333.54. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 2.50% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

Motorola Solutions Company Profile

Motorola Solutions, Inc is a provider of communication infrastructure, devices, accessories, software and services. The Company operates through two segments: Products and Services. The Company’s Products segment offers a portfolio of infrastructure, devices, accessories and software. The Products segment has two product lines: Devices and Systems.

Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Motorola Solutions (NYSE:MSI)

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Teachers Advisors LLC Lowers Stake in Symantec Co. (SYMC)

Teachers Advisors LLC decreased its stake in Symantec Co. (NASDAQ:SYMC) by 11.6% during the fourth quarter, according to its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The institutional investor owned 5,826,455 shares of the company’s stock after selling 767,921 shares during the period. Teachers Advisors LLC owned 0.94% of Symantec worth $139,194,000 as of its most recent filing with the SEC.

Other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also modified their holdings of the company. Orbis Allan Gray Ltd increased its position in shares of Symantec by 36.4% in the fourth quarter. Orbis Allan Gray Ltd now owns 5,584,719 shares of the company’s stock valued at $133,419,000 after buying an additional 1,489,025 shares during the last quarter. Quadrature Capital Ltd increased its position in shares of Symantec by 131.3% in the fourth quarter. Quadrature Capital Ltd now owns 104,690 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,501,000 after buying an additional 59,427 shares during the last quarter. Dodge & Cox acquired a new position in shares of Symantec during the fourth quarter valued at about $180,155,000. Vident Investment Advisory LLC increased its position in shares of Symantec by 7.3% in the fourth quarter. Vident Investment Advisory LLC now owns 114,121 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,726,000 after buying an additional 7,800 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Norges Bank acquired a new position in shares of Symantec during the fourth quarter valued at about $134,284,000. 93.90% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Symantec (NASDAQ:SYMC)

Shares of Symantec Co. (NASDAQ:SYMC) traded up 1.55% during mid-day trading on Wednesday, hitting $30.83. 6,798,119 shares of the company traded hands. The firm has a market cap of $19.08 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 9.29 and a beta of 1.17. Symantec Co. has a 52-week low of $16.25 and a 52-week high of $31.10. The firm has a 50-day moving average price of $29.51 and a 200 day moving average price of $26.19.

Symantec (NASDAQ:SYMC) last issued its earnings results on Wednesday, February 1st. The company reported $0.32 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.28 by $0.04. The company had revenue of $1.09 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.08 billion. Symantec had a net margin of 55.12% and a return on equity of 12.69%. The firm’s revenue was up 19.7% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the prior year, the company earned $0.26 earnings per share. Equities research analysts anticipate that Symantec Co. will post $1.19 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, March 15th. Shareholders of record on Monday, February 20th were issued a dividend of $0.075 per share. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, February 16th. This represents a $0.30 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 0.97%. Symantec’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 9.35%.

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Several research analysts have issued reports on the stock. Morgan Stanley raised their price objective on shares of Symantec from $33.00 to $37.00 and gave the stock an “overweight” rating in a research report on Wednesday, March 22nd. Oppenheimer Holdings Inc. reissued an “outperform” rating and set a $32.00 price objective on shares of Symantec in a research report on Friday, March 3rd. Wunderlich raised their price objective on shares of Symantec from $30.00 to $32.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Monday, February 27th. Barclays PLC assumed coverage on shares of Symantec in a research report on Friday, February 10th. They set an “equal weight” rating and a $30.00 price objective on the stock. Finally, MKM Partners reissued a “neutral” rating and set a $26.00 price objective on shares of Symantec in a research report on Monday, February 6th. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, twelve have assigned a hold rating and ten have assigned a buy rating to the company. Symantec currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $28.20.

In other Symantec news, Director Suzanne M. Vautrinot sold 2,500 shares of the stock in a transaction on Friday, January 6th. The shares were sold at an average price of $25.00, for a total transaction of $62,500.00. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Also, EVP Scott C. Taylor sold 24,000 shares of the stock in a transaction on Friday, January 13th. The stock was sold at an average price of $26.00, for a total transaction of $624,000.00. Following the sale, the executive vice president now directly owns 248,577 shares in the company, valued at $6,463,002. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 99,732 shares of company stock worth $2,728,370 over the last three months. 0.76% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

About Symantec

Symantec Corporation is a United States-based cyber security company. The Company offers products under categories, such as threat protection, information protection, cyber security services and Website security. Under threat protection, it offers Advanced Threat Protection, Endpoint Protection, Endpoint Protection Cloud, IT Management Suite, Email Security.Cloud, Data Center Security and Cloud Workload Protection products.

5 Day Chart for NASDAQ:SYMC

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AT&T lowers unlimited data price to $90, adds 10GB of tethering

Getty Images | Linda Jo Heilman

AT&T is feeling the heat of competition and as a result has lowered the price of its unlimited data plan from $100 to $90 a month, also improving it by adding 10GB of high-speed tethering data. AT&T today also announced a $60-per-month option for customers who are willing to accept slower speeds of no more than 3Mbps.

Until recently, AT&T only sold its $100-per-month unlimited smartphone data plan to customers who also subscribed to DirecTV or U-verse TV. After unlimited data announcements from Verizon and T-Mobile USA, AT&T made its unlimited plan available to any customer but initially did not change any of its annoying limitations. Unlimited data users thus couldn’t use their phones as mobile hotspots to get Internet access for other devices.

Today’s announcement cut the monthly price from $100 to $90 and renamed the plan “Unlimited Data Plus.” Customers will get 10GB of high-speed tethering each month. After the 10GB is used, tethering speeds are reduced to 128kbps. There were no changes to this plan on the HD video front: the best video quality is still disabled by default, but customers can watch video in HD by disabling the “Stream Saver” option, AT&T told Ars.

AT&T also created an “Unlimited Choice” plan that costs $60 a month and also has no data caps and overage fees. However, this plan doesn’t include any tethering capability, and video is always reduced to about 480p resolution or a maximum bandwidth of 1.5Mbps. Overall speeds on the $60 plan are reduced to a maximum of 3Mbps, whereas the more expensive plan provides “our fastest speed.”

Fastest speeds vary by location, but crowdsourced data from OpenSignal last year measured AT&T’s average 4G download speeds at 7.93Mbps.

The $90 and $60 prices require customers to get paperless bills and make automatic payments with a bank account or debit card, as credit card payments are not eligible for those prices. Without the autopay discount, the price rises $5 for single-line plans and $10 for multiline plans.

Unlimited data plans don’t have any data caps or extra fees for using too much data, but they’re not entirely without monthly limits. With both the $90 and $60 plans, customers may see slower speeds for the rest of the month after they use 22GB on a line, but speeds will only be slowed “during times of network congestion.” (AT&T subsidiary Cricket Wireless has reportedly also started throttling after 22GB.) This is similar to the policies of other carriers, although T-Mobile sets the limit at 28GB.

AT&T has special pricing for customers who bundle mobile plans with DirecTV or U-verse TV. Unlimited Plus customers will get a $25 monthly credit on TV packages. This also applies to the DirecTV Now online streaming service, which starts at $35 a month. As a result, you can get a single line of unlimited data with DirecTV Now for $100 a month.

This chart provided by AT&T has a summary of the plans, including prices for multiple lines:

AT&T

The Zacks Investment Research Lowers Motorola Solutions, Inc. (MSI) to Sell

Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Motorola Solutions, Inc. (NYSE:MSI) from a buy rating to a sell rating in a research report released on Wednesday morning.

According to Zacks, “Shares of Motorola Solutions have outperformed the broader industry on a year-to-date basis. The recent acquisition of Spillman Technologies has significantly expanded its product portfolio. However, the company’s heavy reliance on government contracts as a source of revenue is a major concern as any cuts in government spending can hurt the company’s performance. We are also concerned about the company’s exposure to foreign exchange movements due to its global operations. Moreover, the company also has a weak balance sheet which is a worry for investors.”

Several other research firms have also recently issued reports on MSI. Credit Suisse Group reiterated a buy rating and set a $80.00 target price on shares of Motorola Solutions in a research report on Friday, November 4th. BMO Capital Markets upgraded Motorola Solutions from a market perform rating to an outperform rating and boosted their target price for the stock from $72.00 to $84.00 in a research report on Wednesday, October 12th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have assigned a hold rating and six have assigned a buy rating to the company. The company currently has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus target price of $76.00.

Shares of Motorola Solutions (NYSE:MSI) traded down 0.19% on Wednesday, hitting $82.73. The stock had a trading volume of 133,993 shares. The stock has a 50 day moving average price of $82.24 and a 200-day moving average price of $75.35. The company has a market cap of $13.73 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 24.41 and a beta of 0.44. Motorola Solutions has a 12-month low of $59.13 and a 12-month high of $87.55.

Motorola Solutions (NYSE:MSI) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, November 3rd. The company reported $1.37 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.20 by $0.17. The firm had revenue of $1.53 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.52 billion. Motorola Solutions had a negative return on equity of 190.73% and a net margin of 10.19%. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 7.7% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm posted $0.82 EPS. On average, equities analysts expect that Motorola Solutions will post $4.76 earnings per share for the current year.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, January 13th. Investors of record on Thursday, December 15th will be paid a $0.47 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, December 13th. This represents a $1.88 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.27%. This is a positive change from Motorola Solutions’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.41. Motorola Solutions’s dividend payout ratio is presently 55.13%.

In related news, Chairman Gregory Q. Brown sold 95,235 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, December 12th. The stock was sold at an average price of $82.40, for a total value of $7,847,364.00. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is accessible through this hyperlink. 2.55% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

A number of large investors have recently bought and sold shares of MSI. HighPoint Advisor Group LLC raised its stake in Motorola Solutions by 277.2% in the third quarter. HighPoint Advisor Group LLC now owns 10,848 shares of the company’s stock worth $872,000 after buying an additional 7,972 shares during the last quarter. D.A. Davidson & CO. raised its position in shares of Motorola Solutions by 107.1% in the third quarter. D.A. Davidson & CO. now owns 1,868 shares of the company’s stock worth $141,000 after buying an additional 966 shares in the last quarter. Brinker Capital Inc. acquired a new position in shares of Motorola Solutions during the third quarter worth $594,000. Price T Rowe Associates Inc. MD raised its position in shares of Motorola Solutions by 5.8% in the third quarter. Price T Rowe Associates Inc. MD now owns 421,976 shares of the company’s stock worth $32,188,000 after buying an additional 23,120 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Candriam Luxembourg S.C.A. raised its position in shares of Motorola Solutions by 35.9% in the third quarter. Candriam Luxembourg S.C.A. now owns 8,760 shares of the company’s stock worth $668,000 after buying an additional 2,312 shares in the last quarter. 83.97% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Motorola Solutions Company Profile

Motorola Solutions, Inc is a provider of communication infrastructure, devices, accessories, software and services. The Company operates through two segments: Products and Services. Its Products segment offers a portfolio of infrastructure, devices, accessories and software. The Products segment has two product lines, including Devices and Systems.

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