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TweakTown News Posts - Page 2101

Microsoft adds details for used game policies, Kinect privacy, 24-hour online check for Xbox One

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Gaming Consoles | Posted: Jun 6, 2013 11:18 pm

Microsoft has provided just a bit more detail in regards to various concerns users have raised against the new Xbox One. First, Microsoft has confirmed that the new Xbox One will need to connect to the Internet once every 24 hours, or offline gaming will be restricted. Live TV, Blu-ray, and DVD movies will still work without a recent 24 hour check-in.




Microsoft says that "game publishers can enable you to trade in your games at participating retailers." Microsoft adds that they don't charge a platform fee to retailers, publishers, or consumers for transferring these games. It sounds as though individual game developers can prevent their games from being sold as used games.


Users will be able to provide games to friends via the disc. However, this transfer will only allow the game to make one jump and the user receiving the game must have been on your friends list for at least 30 days.


Finally, Microsoft has stated that the Xbox One Kinect sensor will only listen for one command when turned off. "Xbox on" is the only command that will be recognized. Microsoft has confirmed that even this feature will be able to be turned off.

Intel shows off 128GB Thunderbolt thumb drive at Computex Taipei 2013

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Storage | Posted: Jun 6, 2013 11:04 pm

Computex Taipei 2013 - Intel has hacked together some Thunderbolt-powered thumb drives. These 128GB drives interface using Intel's still relatively unused Thunderbolt connection to boost theoretical transfer speeds above those that are possible using a traditional USB 3.0 or SATA 3 interface.




We doubt that the thumb drive will hit Thunderbolt's theoretical 10GB/s limit, but it should outperform SATA 3 6Gpbs. Interestingly, the hacked device makes use of a SanDisk SSD rather than an Intel SSD. It's not clear why they didn't make use of their own technology in the device.


While a Thunderbolt drive would be awesome, it's still quite expensive. It's cost-prohibitive to produce these devices until the cost for Thunderbolt comes down. The cost for Thunderbolt will likely only come down as adoption picks up. We're stuck in situation where one thing has to move first, but which will?

HP working on fanless Haswell-powered tablet, will debut later this year

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Jun 6, 2013 10:37 pm

One of the biggest benefits introduced by Intel's new Haswell architecture is the reduced power consumption. Power consumption and heat are directly related, so reducing power consumption directly impacts heat production. Thanks to lower power consumption, HP will be able to produce a fanless Haswell-powered tablet later this year.




Engadget spotted a fanless HP tablet on stage at Intel's Computex events. While HP wasn't publicly showing off the tablet, they did confirm that an official announcement would be made later this year. Details on the actual product are slim, but you can expect to see fanless tablets and notebooks coming later this year.


It's a bit surprising as most suspected the fan couldn't be dropped until Broadwell showed up on the scene. We'll keep you posted when an official announcement is made by HP.

PlayStation 3 to get Diablo III September 3, demo available at E3

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Gaming | Posted: Jun 6, 2013 10:03 pm

PlayStation 3 gamers will get access to Diablo III on September 3. Blizzard has had pre-orders available for a few weeks now, but the PlayStation blog has provided us with this specific release date. Furthermore, the blog adds that they have been working on tailoring the experience to fit PlayStation.




According to the post, Diablo III will have a playable demo available on the show floor at E3. This means we should be able to go hands-on and get an impression on how well the port was done. E3 takes place next week, so stay tuned to TweakTown for your gaming news!


Are you excited for Diablo III on the PlayStation 3? Let us know in the comments.

LeakedTT: Intel roadmap shows Haswell will stick around until 2015, get refreshed in 2014

By: Trace Hagan | More News: CPU, APU & Chipsets | Posted: Jun 6, 2013 9:32 pm

VRZone has gotten their hands on a leaked Intel roadmap that shows Haswell is in no rush to leave. According to the desktop roadmap, we can expect Haswell to stick around until Broadwell shows up in 2015. Haswell will get a refresh in 2014, but that refresh will likely only boost performance marginally.




Intel doesn't really need to rush out Broadwell simply because they face next to no competition on the desktop CPU front. The mid-life refresh will likely consist of a small speed bump, which is only really important for locked CPUs. The USB 3 bug will also likely be fixed by then, if not before. We also expect an updated chipset, probably the Z97, to be released around the same time.


Of course, mobile could see an update to Broadwell sooner, though it won't likely be more than two quarters ahead of the desktop.

SteelSeries introduces new line of headsets, say hello to H-Series

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Audio, Sound & Speakers | Posted: Jun 6, 2013 9:02 pm

Ahead of this year's E3, SteelSeries has introduced a new line of headsets. The new H-series has several different models, ranging from the basic 3Hv2, which costs $39.99, to the advanced 9H, which costs $159.99. Whatever your needs may be, SteelSeries' new H-series of headsets should feature a headset for you.




The 9H features Dolby Technology and comes with an MSRP of $159.99. According to the company's press release, the headset features up to 7.1 channels of "realistic multi-channel surround sound." The 9H also features SteelSeries' in-line audio controls, with swappable cables for PC, Mac, tablets, and phones.


The 5Hv3 comes with an MSRP of $79.99 and is a step down from the 9H. It features a retractable microphone, which retracts into the headset when not in use. It also features SteelSeries' in-line and swappable audio controls, making the headset compatible with PC, Mac, tablets, and phones.


Finally, the 3Hv2 has an MSRP of just $39.99. It's more an introductory or casual gamer headset. It features a foldable design that makes it easy to stow away for travel. An included adapter allows the headset to work with a variety of devices. Even though the price has been reduced, it still features in-line audio controls, a retractable microphone, and extra-padded leather cushions.

ReportTT: Microsoft and Sky in talks to sell subsidized Xbox One with satellite TV packages

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Jun 6, 2013 8:31 pm

Sky satellite TV customers could soon be able to pick up a subsidized Xbox One with new contract. Reports have surfaced that Sky and Microsoft are currently in talks to provide subsidized Xbox Ones with a Sky subscription package in the UK. These would likely come with a standard two-year contract.




The reports say that we could get confirmation of this as early as June 10 at Microsoft's pre-E3 press conference. It's worth noting that the Xbox One isn't a cable or satellite box. Users would still need to connect in their old equipment into the Xbox One, or at least in the US this would be required.


A subsidy could help boost sales of the next-gen console. Even though the price is still unknown, Amazon has it listed for sale for over $900. Using a subsidy to bring the price down to something a bit more reasonable would aid adoption.


We'll be in attendance of the Microsoft Press Conference on Monday and will bring you the full details as they happen.

ReportTT: Apple to start iPhone trade-in program in stores this month

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Jun 6, 2013 8:04 pm

Apple will reportedly start an iPhone trade-in program in stores this month. Apple hopes that the trade-in program would result in an increase in sales of new models. According to people with knowledge of the plans, Apple has teamed up with Brightstar Corp. to run the trade-in program.




Brightstar is the company who handles trade-ins for AT&T and T-Mobile. Apple will offer money for older model iPhones, boosting sales of new models in the United States and producing a supply of older devices that can then be sold in emerging markets for a profit.


The full details of the program aren't public yet, but the program will reportedly launch this month. Prices paid for working iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S devices are unknown, but could be as high as $200.

Epic Games confirms Unreal Engine 4 will support Oculus Rift

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Virtual & Augmented Reality | Posted: Jun 6, 2013 7:29 pm

In an exciting gaming-related piece of news, Epic Games has announced that their upcoming Unreal Engine 4 will come with support for Oculus VR's upcoming Oculus Rift VR headset. Oculus Rift is seen as a holy grail gaming device and the future of gaming. From personal experience, Oculus Rift is quite epic.




By including Oculus Rift support in Unreal Engine 4, Epic Games is making it easier for game developers to include support for the virtual reality headset. The easier it is to include, the more likely it is that developers will include support. Unreal Engine 4 will also come with support for various other middlewares:


  • Audiokinetic - Wwise
  • Autodesk - Autodesk Gameware
  • Donya Labs - Simplygon
  • Geomerics- Enlighten
  • IDV - SpeedTree for Games
  • Intel - Intel Threading Building Blocks (TBB)
  • NaturalMotion - morpheme and euphoria
  • NVIDIA - PhysX and APEX
  • Oculus VR - Oculus Rift
  • RAD Game Tools - Bink Video and Telemetry Performance Visualizer
  • RealD - RealD Developer Kit (RDK)
  • Umbra Software - Umbra 3
  • Xoreax - IncrediBuild-XGE

Samsung pushes out Galaxy S4 update, creates more storage room for apps and more

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Jun 6, 2013 7:02 pm

When Samsung's flagship Galaxy S4 launched, there were many reviewers in the tech world who griped about the limited amount of space available for app storage on the 16GB model. The issue arose when it was discovered that only 9.15GB were available for storage and that there was no way to move apps to the SD card.




This morning, Samsung released a software update that rectifies this problem, increasing available storage to a whopping 9.23 GB and also opening up the pathway for apps to now be installed on the SD card. This functionality has been available through third-party apps the whole time but some people like to use the manufacturers apps.


Other improvements include new camera firmware, a semi-transparent status bar, HDR video recording, easier to read fonts, and several bug fixes. The update measure in at 357 MB and is only available for the Snapdragon-powered variant of the Galaxy S4. At the moment the update is being rolled out in Germany and will be available in other markets in the coming days.