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Xbox 360 to receive Internet Explorer 9, oh and Kinect support

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Internet Browsers | Posted: May 12, 2012 3:00 am

Microsoft kinda wants to turn the Xbox 360 into a PC, but kinda doesn't. Today's "kinda does" includes news that the OS and gaming giant will release Internet Explorer 9 to the Xbox 360, which would include Kinect voice and gesture support.




The Xbox 360 already sports voice search functions with Bing, but the results are limited to just media only. Having Internet Explorer would give the Xbox 360 a full-on web browsing experience, in an unrestricted environment. The Verge is reporting this, so it gives the news some big credit.


If the Xbox 360 owner has the Kinect motion-sensing device, they could use it for voice and gesture control within Internet Explorer. This would be a pretty nifty thing to have on the couch, and would really give credit toward Kinect being a huge feature for the next-generation Xbox. Because text can't be easily entered in with a console controller, voice control makes perfect sense. E3 isn't too far away, and I have a feeling we should see and hear about it then.

Upstart FreedomPop iPhone case offers free 4G data, mobile hotspot, extra battery life

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: May 11, 2012 10:31 pm

Have an iPhone? Use less than 500MB of data a month? Live in a select few regions? Then do I have some good news for you! A new upstart company based out of LA announced the launch of a preorder process for a new iPhone case which comes with a few perks. FreedomPop's iPhone case comes with 500MB of free 4G data using Clearwire's WiMAX network.




Not only will the iPhone case provide 500MB of free data for your iPhone, it can also boost the battery life of your device or share the connection through Wi-Fi hotspot functionality. The case will retail for $99, so if you cancel your data plan, the case will be paid for in just a few months. Even if you exceed the 500MB, each additional MB is just $0.01, or $10 a Gigabyte.


At this price, it is pretty much in line with what the carriers charge, so it's really a no-risk proposition. Additionally, users can earn up to 500MB extra for free through referrals and other programs. According to FreedomPop VP of Product Mauricio Sastre, "The timing couldn't be better for our product. Carriers are throttling data and increasing prices and users are desperate for affordable alternatives. As the mobile industry flexes its joint oligopolistic power, we want to ensure that we are keeping them honest."


To see if the service will be available in your area, you can visit the preorder page and enter your address.

Continue reading 'Upstart FreedomPop iPhone case offers free 4G data, mobile hotspot, extra battery life' (full post)

GE releases WattStation Connect software to let you charge your neighbor's car and wallet

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Technology in Vehicles | Posted: May 11, 2012 9:34 pm

Electric cars and the charging stations needed to charge them aren't cheap and aren't widely available. It's kind of the same situation as the chicken vs the egg. Which came first? The electric car industry is in a similar place--to sell electric vehicles, there need to be charging stations, to put in charging stations, a business has to make money and have customers.




This is where GE's new WattStation Connect software comes into play. The new software will allow users who own a WattStation charger to charge other people money to charge up their car. Charges can be assessed by the hour, per kilowatt hour, or even a flat fee. Additionally, companies can allow their employees to charge for free while charging other people.


The software also allows owners to broadcast the location of the EV charging station to entice more "customers." GE is pairing the service with PayPal which will be used to process the payments for charging. Unfortunately, since the charger is a level 2 charger, most vehicles will need to be parked for several hours, so I'm not too sure how keen people will be to have strangers parked in their drive for that long. app is released for Android

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Apps | Posted: May 11, 2012 8:32 pm

If you're one of the many users of, the online DJ site which helps people find new music, and own an Android phone, there is now an app available for you. The new app is compatible with every Android device running version 2.2 or higher. There are a couple of bugs that still need to be worked out, but it's great it has expanded from just being on the web and iOS.


turntable_fm_app_is_released_for_android_173 had promised this app just a little bit ago saying that it was "coming soon" and it did. Now that the Android app is out, there are some other features that I'm sure users would like to see. Mainly, I think that the primary thing on fans' wishlist is for the site and app to be available outside of the United States.


Right now, the expansion to beyond the United States has been halted due to licensing agreements and copyright difficulties. It most likely will take a few years before all of that gets cleared up, so right now focus on the new app and help find bugs for the team to fix. If you do, everyone will end up with a better app.

Ubisoft announces Avengers game for WiiU and Kinect

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Gaming | Posted: May 11, 2012 7:33 pm

Have you seen that movie that everyone is talking about? Well, Ubisoft has teamed up with Marvel Entertainment to create a new game based upon the Anvengers. The new game will be released on WiiU and Kinect and is touting the motion controls that it will come with. This isn't a surprise since it's launching on two of the biggest motion control platforms.




The new game, dubbed Marvel Avengers: Battle for Earth, will showcase interactive environments inspired by Marvel's comic artwork and the Secret Invasion storyline. The game features a massive 20 characters including popular Avengers like Iron Man, Hulk, Captain America and Thor. The super villains aren't left out, though.


Super villains, along with other super heroes from the Marvel Universe not mentioned above, will also be included in the game."We are excited to team up with Marvel Entertainment to bring some of the most iconic comic book characters from the Marvel line-up to life in motion-gaming," said Tony Key, SVP of US sales and marketing at Ubisoft. "Fans of the Marvel universe and superhero games are going to love the extensive combinations of characters, motion-controlled moves and competitive gameplay." The game will launch in the Autumn.

Ivy Bridge's heat problem is indeed caused by Intel's TIM choice

By: Trace Hagan | More News: CPU, APU & Chipsets | Posted: May 11, 2012 6:31 pm

There has been a lot of debate back and forth about whether or not Ivy Bridge's "slight" heat problem is caused by Intel's choice to not use solder to attach the IHS to the core. Originally, people were blaming the higher density of the transistors, due to the 22nm process, for the heat issue. Then, someone decided to de-lid the chip and found TIM instead of solder.




First, let me recommend you not remove the IHS from your chip as it could damage your chip, not to mention it voids your warranty. Besides, someone else has already done it for you along with the testing needed to prove that the heat issue is due to the TIM used by Intel. Impress PC Watch wiped off Intel's TIM and replaced it with OCZ's Freeze Extreme and Coollaboratory's Liquid Pro to see the difference.


The results? As you can expect from the title of this news post, the TIM choice that Intel made did in fact yield higher temperatures. Load temperatures at stock settings results in an 8*C and 11*C drop in temperatures which is a pretty big change. Overclocking the chip to 4.6GHz resulted in even bigger differences: 15*C for the OCZ TIM and 20*C for the Coollaboratory TIM.


True, these also used a massive air cooler, but the results should be similar with any air cooler, just higher temps for all tests. Intel really dropped the ball here as these aren't low-end CPUs, these are unlocked, overclocking beasts. It would have been a marginal cost for a huge benefit.

Continue reading 'Ivy Bridge's heat problem is indeed caused by Intel's TIM choice' (full post)

Nintendo ending production of Aqua Blue 3DS

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Gaming | Posted: May 11, 2012 5:32 pm

Are you an owner of an Aqua Blue 3DS? You may just happen to own a piece of history as Nintendo Japan's website states that the Aqua Blue 3DS is "Scheduled to end production shortly." Why? No reason was cited on the website, so it is time to do some guessing. Online people are speculating that it could be due to a lack of popularity.




Furthermore, it could be that the recently launched Cobalt Blue 3DS has impacted sales. This idea goes along with the lack of popularity idea. Last year when the 3DS launched, it was available in just two colors: Auqa Blue and Cosmo Black. I happen to own Cosmo Black. It is now available in 6 colors. Well, soon to be 5.


Since this is a Japan website announcement, it could just be ending in Japan, however, since it states it is ending production, I imagine they will no longer be available in the United States. Of course, this portion is unknown, so take it with a grain of sand. I will update you as soon as I know something concrete.

NVIDIA reports first quarter financial results, less profit than last quarter, still in the black

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: May 11, 2012 4:31 pm

NVIDIA's first quarter of fiscal year 2013 is now over and the results are slightly lackluster. Don't get me wrong, NVIDIA still made money, but they made quite a bit less than last quarter. Revenue fell a few percentage points and overall net profit fell by nearly 50% to settle in at only $60.4 million.




I would blame this lackluster performance on the fact that they didn't get a Kepler GPU out until the middle to end of the quarter. As such, their products couldn't really compete with AMD's, so it's unlikely that as many people were purchasing them. NVIDIA still sounds positive, however, as this is what Jen-Hsun Huang, , president and chief executive officer of NVIDIA, said:


Kepler GPUs are accelerating our business. Our newly launched desktop products are winning some of the best reviews we've ever had. Notebook GPUs had a record quarter. And Tegra is on a growth track again, driven by great mobile device wins and the upcoming Windows on ARM launch. Graphics is more important than ever. Look for exciting news next week at the GPU Technology Conference as we reveal new ways that the GPU will enhance mobile and cloud computing.


The company expects to rebound in the second quarter, and I don't think that is an unreasonable expectation given the wide accolade that Kepler has earned. They expect revenue to fall somewhere between $990 million and $1.05 billion with operating expenses increasing slightly.

Continue reading 'NVIDIA reports first quarter financial results, less profit than last quarter, still in the black' (full post)

LG planning to produce "unbreakable" flexible OLED displays

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Displays & Projectors | Posted: May 11, 2012 3:27 pm

When I think of OLED screens, I think of Samsung. Samsung pretty much has a chokehold on the market as far as OLED screens go. Now, however, Samsung's Korean competitor is planning to make OLED screens with a new production line. LG is actually using a completely different production process than Samsung which will allow the screens to be flexible.




Now, don't get too excited over this news. It's unlikely that we will be seeing flexible handheld devices anytime soon as the other portions of the device are still pretty rigid. However, this flexible screen is said to be thinner and more durable, "unbreakable," if you ask some people, and most importantly, less prone to damage from impact.


As such, these screens could still find their way into mobile devices pretty quickly. By switching to these screens, Corning Gorilla Glass would most likely no longer be necessary, which would reduce the weight of the device. The new production line has cost LG $176 million and should get the green light to start producing by the end of the year.

Wolfenstein 3D gets browser port to celebrate 20 years since release

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Gaming | Posted: May 11, 2012 2:02 pm

Happy Friday everyone! Bethesda and id Software would like to help you get just a little bit less done on this Friday. They have released an official browser port of the the game Wolfenstein 3D to celebrate the 20th anniversary of said game's release. The port is full featured and has all of the original levels and assets as the original.




The game is playable on pretty much any recent browser and looks to be using HTML5. Head on over to if you would like to play the game and waste some time. Controls are pretty easy to learn: arrows to move, X to shoot, Z to strafe, and space for doors and secrets.



Since it's Friday, I'm sure we all could use just a wee bit more stuff to help us procrastinate, so they released a Director's Commentary video. In the video above, John Carmack talks about the history of the game along with some of the technical details. The first half of the 25-minute video is in still images, with the second half being Carmack actually playing through a few levels while still talking.

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