One feature that is growing in popularity on many vehicles available today is in-car web connectivity. Several automakers are giving cars the ability to be connected to 4G networks and share that connectivity with people in the car. the idea is to give passengers access to the web and entertainment options while they travel.
Audi is offering a 4G LTE connectivity option in its new 2015 A3 sedan. It is teaming up with AT&T for service for the car and details on the mobile connection plans have been announced. The service will be available with AT&T in North America.
AT&T will offer two plans according to reports. One of the plans is a six-month offering with 5GB of data. The other plan is a 30-month plan that offers 30GB of data. Audi owners that already have an AT&T shared data plan can also add their car as another device. No word on pricing for the AT&T plans for the car at this time.
This afternoon Twitter went offline and has remained in "maintenance mode" for the last 20 minutes or so. TweakTown has confirmed that the outage is worldwide with users in the US, UK, Australia, and Asia not being able to connect. When visiting the desktop and mobile versions of the site users are presented with the image below.
At the moment the outage is unknown and no official word has been given as to why the outage is occurring. I have reached out to my contacts at Twitter and am awaiting a response. In the mean time the TweakTown news team will continue to search for reports of what is causing the outage and will update this posting with anything that we find.
Google says that it has already laid about 6,000 miles of fiber optic broadband cable throughout Kansas City, and now the company is ready to expand even further. The company plans on extending its Google Fiber coverage to residents in South Kansas City, Kansas City, Grandview, Raytown and Gladstone areas.
Google says that if there is enough demand in these areas and residents sign up with a $10 registration fee, then they will expand their fiber network to these areas just weeks after the signups are complete. There is a deadline to signup for Google Fiber and its ranges based on the area you live in so check the list after the jump and sign up as fast as possible!
Samsung has rolled out a new version of the Galaxy S III Mini smartphone called the Galaxy S III Mini Value edition. The original S III Mini launched in late 2012 and the new version brings some updated specifications to the mix for budget shoppers.
The S III Mini value Edition has a 4-inch screen with a resolution of 480 x 800. It runs an upgraded 1.2GHz dual-core processor and has 1GB of RAM. Integrated storage for the device is 8GB.
That isn't a lot of storage space and when you need more you can expand storage using a microSD card. The Value Edition smartphone has a 5MP rear camera and a VGA resolution front camera. The operating system is Android 4.2. I guess a smartphone with the modest specs this one has doesn't need Android 4.4.
In the normal civilian world people worry about things like being a glasshole while wearing their Google Glass headset. On the battlefield all most soldiers care about is getting their job done and keeping themselves and their friends safe. BAE Systems has a headset that is sort of like Google Glass that could help soldiers stay safe on the battlefield.
The system is called Q-Warrior and it fits on a helmet that helps protect the soldier. The eyepiece can give the wearer a 3D view of things that are going on outside their field of view. The idea is that the soldier could get video from a drone feed or other types of data showing what the baddies are doing as an operation unfolds.
The coolest part about the Q-Warrior headset is that the system is capable of being used as promised right now. It's not something that is a decade away from feasibility. One of the things holding deployment now is work to secure the wireless video feeds that make the headset useful. It wouldn't do to field something like this if the drone feeds could be hacked or blocked.
If you are the DIY sort that is always tinkering with One project or another, you may be familiar with the Raspberry Pi. This cheap little developer board has found its way into many a cool project since it launched. One thing that the device has been missing is its own sound card.
Element 14 has announced the launch of a sound card for the Pi to fill that gap in features. A Wolfson audio processor is integrated into the sound card and supports audio at 24-bit/192KHz. It can be directly connected to an amp using a 3.5mm output or a digital S/PDIF output.
The sound card also handles audio recording using a pair of onboard MEMS microphones. One of the nicer features of this card is the price. The Wolfson Audio card for Raspberry Pi sells for $33. Affordability is one of the hallmarks of the Pi and its accessories.
This morning, Microsoft released one of the most anticipated games of 2014 to the world. Titanfall has been described as Halo for the next generation of gamers, as well as Call of Duty evolved, and Microsoft is billing it as the best FPS to hit the Xbox One since launch. Everything did not go smoothly though, and the Electronic Arts distributed game experienced connection issues which prompted EA to issue a patch just hours after the the game launched.
Just minutes after the game went live, both PC players and Xbox One owners who had pre-loaded the game began to experience connection issues which saw them stuck on the "initializing screen." This issue is quite similar to what Diablo 3, Sim City and Battlefield 4 users experienced on launch day as well. Fortunately, EA issued a 380MB patch around 2AM that has seemed to fix the issue.
The issue is not related to EA's servers though as the game is the first to be hosted on Microsoft's Azure cloud servers, which is able to scale up based on the amount of load the system is experiencing. EA says that some of the issues stemmed from a network issue with those using Belkin routers, which is fixed by players opening some ports in the routers admin panel. Titanfall is available on Origin and Xbox Live for $59.99.
Origin has announced another new gaming machine and this time out the little PC is very compact and can still be fitted with powerful hardware. The machine is a micro-tower PC that measures 4" w x 15" h x 13.75" d. The PC can be placed on a desk in vertical or horizontal orientations.
Like most of the highly customizable PCs that Origin offers, the Chronos micro-tower rig has many options. It can be had with up to an ASUS Mini-ITX Maximus VI Impact mainboard. Despite the small size of the PC, it can be fitted with a big and powerful NVIDIA video card.
Origin offers up to an NVIDIA GeForce Titan GTX Black video card. If you like the idea of overclocking, but don't want to mess with the settings yourself, Origin will also overclock the CPU and GPU for you.
Amazon has been peddling the Kindle Paperwhite reader for a longtime now. If you are using one of the original first generation units, your device lacks some of the features of the second-generation units. Amazon is fixing that with an OTA software update for the first gen Paperwhite.
One of the big features that the update adds is Goodreads integration. After the update is applied, the "g" icon turns up on the Paperwhite menu bar as it does on newer devices. With Goodreads integration, the user is able to put their books into lists, share digital bookshelves, and post book excerpts among other things.
Goodreads integration isn't all the update brings. Parents get the FreeTime function to be able to track their kids reading habits. Users can also now skim a book without losing their place thanks to Page Flip.
Audi unveiled a system during CES 2014 that is able to connect with compatible traffic lights and give the driver a countdown on the dash showing when the light will turn green. Audi has offered some more information about the system, and the carmaker says that the system will save fuel as well.
The way the traffic light recognition tool will help save fuel is by connecting with the start stop technology inside the car. The start stop system will leave the engine off until five seconds before the light turns green. Audi figures that the system could save about 240 million gallons of fuel if it was in wide use.
The system could also cut emissions by 15%. If you are wondering why the engine starts five seconds before the light turns green when most start-stop systems can start an engine in less than a second, the 5 seconds is meant as a reminder to the driver to get ready to drive.