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YouTube offering ad-supported movies

Written by James Delahunty @ 19 Nov 2018 6:35

YouTube offering ad-supported movies YouTube is now offering some feature-length films for free, supported by advertisements.

It added the films to the service quietly in October to its "Movies & Shows" section, and currently has around 100 movies. Most of them are legacy movies of course, but they do include the original Terminator and Rocky, for example.

Typically, YouTube uses its Movies & Shows section to sell or rent access to feature-length films. The free streaming option showed up in October for the first time.

"We saw this opportunity based on user demand, beyond just offering paid movies. Can we do ad-supported movies, free to the user?" Rohit Dhawan, director of product management at YouTube, told AdAge.

"It also presents a nice opportunity for advertisers."

In the future, Dhawan thinks that some individual films on the service will be sponsored by advertisers.

More info: AdAge




AfterDawn: News

Microsoft considering Xbox without a disc drive

Written by James Delahunty @ 19 Nov 2018 6:23

Microsoft considering Xbox without a disc drive Microsoft is considering releasing its next Xbox One variant without a built-in Blu-ray Disc drive, according to a report.

Thurrott cites sources in reporting that Microsoft will release the new Xbox One variant without the disc drive at a considerably lower price. It estimates that an Xbox One without a Blu-ray drive can easily shave $100 off the price of the console.

Microsoft is also said to be considering a 'disc to digital' exchange program, allowing for Xbox One owners to drop their physical copies into a store to receive a digital download code in return.

The sources also said Microsoft is working on a revamped Xbox One S that does still retain a Blu-ray disc drive, as the company is conscious of the fact that a lot of gamers still prefer to have a physical copy of a game rather than downloading it.

A disc-drive-less Xbox One console would launch next year, according to the sources. It is also not part of Microsoft's next generation Scarlett consoles. The aim is to sell the console for around $200 or less.

Source: Thurrott




AfterDawn: News

Upcoming Pixel 3 Lite leaks with live photos

Written by Matti Vähäkainu @ 17 Nov 2018 12:34

Upcoming Pixel 3 Lite leaks with live photos Google's newly released Pixel 3 smartphones are the craze at the point. They are definitely at the peak of Android phones, but unfortunately they don't come cheap.

I mean, they aren't iPhone expensive, but for many $800 on a phone is just unequivocally too much. Fortunately it seems like Google is bringing some of that magic to lower price points.

A new leak from a Russian website details an upcoming Pixel device called Pixel 3 Lite. As you might imagine from the suggested name, the device is a cheaper version of Pixel 3, a midtier smartphone.

According to the website the phone, known as codename Sargo, features the same amazing 12 megapixel camera from the original Pixel 3, by far one of the most important features of the Pixel lineup altogether.

The phone has larger bezels but sports a similarly sized 5,56 inch Full HD+ display (compared to regular Pixel 3), but instead of AMOLED uses an IPS panel. You also have a USB-C and front-facing stereo speakers.

One thing you won't find on the more expensive Pixels but you have here is the headphone jack, which could win some people over.

Clearly the biggest drawback, however, is the SoC which is a new midtier Snapdragon 670. That will affect performance quite a bit, although day-to-day stuff is probably going to still be butter smooth.

Read more...


AfterDawn: News

Apple luring in Qualcomm engineers to build modem in-house?

Written by Matti Vähäkainu @ 17 Nov 2018 11:35

Apple luring in Qualcomm engineers to build modem in-house? Apple and Qualcomm aren't exactly buddies when it comes to the tech space. They are both American, and both love their mobile devices but unfortunately they are competing against each other, especially now the Apple likes to make all their own chips.

The world's largest company by market cap and the leading mobile chip manufacturer have been at each others throats for a while. I guess they are the new Apple and Samsung.

Now it seems that Apple is striking back at Qualcomm by trying to lure in some of their talent. Bloomberg reports that Apple has 10 new openings for semiconductor designers in San Diego.

Before this Apple hasn't recruited in the San Diego area, and conveniently that is where Qualcomm's R&D on chip design is located.

Apple is looking for 5G and LTE experts which points to in-house built modem for future iPhones and iPads that has been previously rumored. Other jobs include positions in Bluetooth and AI development.

This isn't the first time Apple has established a new teams near competitors, or otherwise convenient spots, to lure in talent.

Read more...


AfterDawn: News

PlayStation 4 turns 5 after over 86 million consoles sold

Written by Matti Vähäkainu @ 16 Nov 2018 10:12

PlayStation 4 turns 5 after over 86 million consoles sold Sony has started the celebrations for PlayStation 4's fifth birthday, and although at this point they haven't revealed any major discount, I'm sure there will be those too.

The company has now posted a infographic revealed some of the numbers they've achieved with their latest gaming console. First and foremost Sony is boasting over 86 million PlayStation 4 units sold.

This means that it has left PS3 (83M) and Xbox 360 (84M) in the dust and is looking to overtake Wii and original PlayStation at just over 100 million. Leading the pack is Playstation 2 with a whopping 155 million units sold.

In addition over 779 million pieces of PS4 software have been sold, nearly 10 per console. After the initial PS4 software at 1.01 the company has issued 11 major updates to what is now version 6.00.

Some of the most popular and best-selling games include Call of Duty (both Black Ops III and WWII), FIFA 17 and 18, Grand Theft Auto V, and of course Fortnite.

On a more controversial note, Sony has also revealed that it is not attending E3 next year. It will be the first time in 24 years that the electronics giant is absent from one of the largest, albeit in decline, gaming conventions.

PS4 Fifth Anniversary




AfterDawn: News

Nintendo reaches $12 million settlement against ROM sites

Written by James Delahunty @ 16 Nov 2018 1:26

Nintendo reaches $12 million settlement against ROM sites The operators of two websites that distributed ROM copies of old retro games have agreed to pay Nintendo over $12 million in damages.

The defendants in the case are a married couple who ran LoveROMS.com and LoveRETRO.co. They admitted to copyright and trademark infringement for the unauthorized distribution of the ROMs after Nintendo filed a complaint in federal court in Arizona.

Immediately after the complaint, the websites were taken offline. Several other major distributors of ROMs took down their websites afterward too, potentially fearing that legal action may be on the horizon.

Settlement discussions ensued between the site operators and Nintendo and produced a resolution to the case. They admitted their involvement in running the site and to direct and indirect copyright and trademark infringement offenses, and agreed to a large settlement.

"Plaintiff is hereby awarded judgment against all Defendants, jointly and severally, in the amount of $12,230,000," the settlement reads, reports TorrentFreak.

A judge has to approve the proposed settlement to close the case. It is unlikely the operators will end up paying such a large sum. In other copyright and trademark infringement cases, the public settlement figure has been far larger than the actual monetary exchange that comes after. The intention of such a large public figure is to deter similar practices.

Read more...


AfterDawn: News

Man pleads guilty in fatal 'swatting' case

Written by James Delahunty @ 16 Nov 2018 1:25

Man pleads guilty in fatal 'swatting' case A California man has pleaded guilty to making a hoax call to police that resulted in the death of an innocent man in Kansas, among other crimes.

The 25-year-old man had made a hoax call to police in Wichita, Kansas, disguising his phone number to appear to be local. He informed the police that he had shot his father and was keeping other family members hostage. Police responded quickly to the given address and fatally shot a man who had allegedly failed to comply with orders to keep his hands in the air in plain sight.

Earlier this year, the police officer who fired the fatal shot was cleared of wrongdoing.

Prosecutors alleged that the defendant had set out to spoof armed police into turning up at the address over an online gaming dispute. This sinister practice is known as "swatting". A third-party had given him the address, but the intended target had moved out of the premises. When police arrived, the victim stepped outside to see what was going on and was fatally shot by police soon after.

The defendant in the case also pleaded guilty to other crimes including making hoax bomb threats to the FBI, schools, universities and more.

Source: BBC News




AfterDawn: News

Microsoft adds keyboard and mouse support to Xbox One – Here's the list of supported games

Written by Matti Vähäkainu @ 15 Nov 2018 11:21

Microsoft adds keyboard and mouse support to Xbox One – Here's the list of supported games Microsoft revealed in Semptember that Xbox One will be getting support for mouse and keyboard controls. Now the company has released the update that indeed adds the support.

However, this doesn't mean that you can just take a game and play it with your more precise controls. Unfortunately this requires that the game developer has enabled the support.

Thankfully there already are a few games you can take use of your PC gaming peripherals. Currently support is only found in Fortnite and Warframe.

Microsoft has at this point promised support for a total of 15 games, and the full list is below.

Nearly all wired and wireless mice and keyboards should work with the Xbox One, even though Microsoft is developing an custom Xbox One keyboard with Razer.

Read more...


AfterDawn: News

Google updated Assistant with several new talents

Written by Matti Vähäkainu @ 15 Nov 2018 11:04

Google updated Assistant with several new talents Google has revealed some new Assistant tricks in their official blog. The voice assistant brings some dearly needed talents in time for the holiday season.

As you might already know Assistant enabled devices, smart speakers and displays, already support broadcasts sent from smartphones. Now Google is adding a reply feature to smart speakers so you can easily tell your mom you heard dinner was ready.

Perhaps the most important update in time for holiday season is the new My Cookbook that allows saving important recipes. Google has also added a new Recommended Recipes card to the home screen that uses AI to figure out what kind of dishes you might be interested next.

Read more...


AfterDawn: News

Windows 10 October update greenlit again, doesn't destroy your files

Written by Matti Vähäkainu @ 14 Nov 2018 14:50

Windows 10 October update greenlit again, doesn't destroy your files In early October Microsoft released their newest October 2018 Update for Windows 10. Unfortunately the update had some major issues, including destroying some people's files, and had to be pulled indefinitely.

Now Microsoft has finally re-released the update a month later, and this time around it should be safe to install.

October 2018 Update, or I guess it should be November 2018 Update now, has been available for beta testers for a while now, but finally it's coming to worldwide audiences.

Microsoft is still taking a careful stance and is releasing it to the public in smaller batches.

All you can do is just to check your Windows Update section in the coming days and weeks to receive the update as there is not clear indication which systems will receive the update first.

Microsoft has also ensured that quality control is of the utmost importance in future updates.

October 2018 Update is a major update that brings changes to Cortana, Settings, Edge, Shell, and many more. It has things like Clipboard history and sync, dark theme for File Explorer, tabs in File Explorer and other apps, better screenshot utility, and more.




AfterDawn: News

HBO: Game of Thrones returns in April

Written by Matti Vähäkainu @ 14 Nov 2018 13:26

HBO: Game of Thrones returns in April HBO's hit show Game of Thrones has been breaking records ever since it debuted in April of 2011. Next year we're going to witness the climax of the show as it concludes in season 9.

HBO has confirmed that the last season of Game of Thrones will premiere in April 2019. The launch was made official in a tweet yesterday by HBO featuring a 30 second trailer combining some of the key moments from previous seven seasons.

The tagline reads "Every battle. Every betrayal. Every risk. Every fight. Every sacrifice. Every death. All #ForTheThrone."

Unfortunately there's no teaser footage of the upcoming season or even an exact date yet. Then again there's still 5 months during which we'll probably learn more about the ultimate GoT season.

Read more...


AfterDawn: News

Netflix trials a cheaper $4 mobile plan in Asia

Written by Matti Vähäkainu @ 14 Nov 2018 12:58

Netflix trials a cheaper $4 mobile plan in Asia Netflix is seeking more business in Asia where the company's growth in the future largely lies.

The streaming giant has recently announced new Asian Originals from Taiwan to Thailand, and now it has confirmed to Bloomberg that it is trialing a new cheaper plan there as well.

Trying to compete with local competitors it has introduced a new cheaper plan that is meant for mobile streaming. This mobile-only plan gets you Netflix content for a mere $4 a month, but only on the go and with limited quality.

The plan is available at least in Malaysia where it costs 17 Malaysian Ringgit or $4.05. According to TechCrunch, a Netflix spokesperson confirmed that few countries were involved but didn't reveal the other countries.

There's no pressure to lower the prices of existing tier, however. After all the service has only gotten more expensive as Netflix invests more in original programming.

Read more...


AfterDawn: News

Steam fixes bug allowing free game downloads

Written by James Delahunty @ 12 Nov 2018 22:26

Steam fixes bug allowing free game downloads Steam has fixed a flaw that could have allowed users to download and play unlimited games for free.

The bug was discovered by researcher Artem Moskowsky, who received $15,000 for the discovery and an addition $5,000 for making a private disclosure. Steam's portal for game developers housed the flaw, allowing anybody to generate license keys for games.

The portal allows developers to generate license keys for their software. This allows developers to share games with journalists for review, for example. Mr. Moskowsky discovered that he could easily manipulate the feature to generate unlimited license keys for other software.

"I managed to bypass the verification of ownership of the game by changing only one parameter," he told The Register.

Like other outlets, Valve has an award program for security researchers who find and report flaws and vulnerabilities that can be exploited. It allows them to fix the problem before it could be used for malicious purposes. In this case, Valve determined that nobody had exploited the flaw to generate license keys.




AfterDawn: News

Netflix on Wii will stop working in January

Written by James Delahunty @ 12 Nov 2018 22:17

Netflix on Wii will stop working in January Netflix will stop working on Nintendo's Wii console by the end of January 2019, the Japanese firm has confirmed.

The Wii is an aging console, having been released by Nintendo to much enthusiasm in 2006. It had support for many third-party services through apps, including Netflix. However, from January 2019, Netflix and other streaming apps will no longer work on the console.

Nintendo informed customers about the change through an email and also posted a notice on the web.

Nintendo has announced that it will close the Wii Shop Channel on the Nintendo Wii in 2019. As a result, all video streaming services on the Wii, including the Netflix Channel, are no longer available to new members as of July 31, 2018. Nintendo Wii U users are not impacted by this change.

Thankfully Netflix and other streaming apps are available across a plethora of devices, if not built directly into your television. Regardless, this will come as a bummer for some users who might have been using the Wii console primarily to stream content at this point.

With the closure of the Wii Shop channel, the Wii console will be useful only for playing offline games you already possess.

Read more...


AfterDawn: News

OnePlus 6T sold almost twice as much the first day as its predecessor

Written by Matti Vähäkainu @ 11 Nov 2018 14:31

OnePlus 6T sold almost twice as much the first day as its predecessor In the past five years or so the Chinese smartphone manufacturer OnePlus has managed to pull itself out of the niche market to be a proper competitor in the big leagues.

This year, however, it made a huge deal with T-Mobile which brought it first time ever to American carriers. Before the OnePlus 6T, released October 29th, OnePlus have had to rely only on its own online channels.

Now that they have their foot in the door for the first time, you would expect an improvement in the sales figure, right?

Well, it turns out that is exactly what you get. According to XDA, OnePlus.com and T-Mobile combined sales for OnePlus 6T was 86% higher on the first day than sales was for OnePlus 6 earlier this year.

Now, this is only the first day, we'll have to see how the rest of the quarter goes. However, it could be argued that T-Mobile carrying the phone will be even more important in the coming months that enthusiasts aren't the ones buying the device.

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