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Comcast-Time Warner deal riles up consumersConsumers voice concerns over cable merger, Verizon offers a new data plan, and Facebook members can select from more than 50 gender choices.
It's time to complain about evil cable companies. I'm Bridget Carey and this is your CNET update. Comcast and Time Warner Cable, America's two largest cable companies, agreed to merge, forming the ultimate mega, evil cable company. Okay, I'm just joking, but people sure do hate their cable companies because after the news broke, Twitter was filled with people making fun of how horrible life will be for customers under the merger. Some cry out how it will raise internet and television costs for consumers and it will make it harder for rivals to come in and challenge the cable behemoth, and by being so large, it won't have incentive to do right by customers and improve. But these two cable giants, of course, argue the opposite that this marriage will be good for consumers by saving money, and they will improve the tech offerings to better compete against new players like Google Fiber. Bottom line is that it's not approved yet. Nothing is changing for a while, and you'll still feel grumpy about the quality of your customer service. In other giant tech company news, Verizon Wireless changed up its data plans to be more competitive. There's a new more everything plan that promises more data, 25 gigs of cloud storage and unlimited international messaging. And for those that are paying for their phone in full to upgrade early with the Edge monthly installment plan, you'll finally get a break on your service bill, which is what the other carriers already offer. If you own an Xbox One, you may soon be able to control it with the new Xbox One remote. Amazon's Canadian store front temporarily published a preorder page for an item called the Xbox One Media Remote, and before it was taken down, screenshots showed that it would go for around $25 when it launches on March 4th. Microsoft has yet to announce such a product, but Microsoft is selling a new Xbox headset in March. And that's not the only Microsoft leak, this image posted on Twitter shows Microsoft is trying to make it easier on app developers with something called Universal Store. It will let programmers create a single app that works for both Windows phone and the Windows desktop. On Facebook, you have more ways now to identify your gender. Facebook added about 50 different terms that people can pick from if they don't want to go with male or female. Some of the choices include androgynous, bigender, transsexual, and gender fluid. There's also the option of picking what pronoun you want people to go by, him, her, or them as a neutral choice. These new options will be available first for US members. That's your tech news update, but you could find more details at CNET.com/update, and you can also stay updated by following along on Twitter. From our studios in New York, I'm Bridget Carey.