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The HTC-built Facebook Phone has been sold out at AT&T, no new orders will be happening

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Jun 26, 2013 6:28 am

AT&T have announced that the HTC-built 'Facebook Phone' has been sold out, with the telco not buying another batch of phones. AT&T have denied urmors that they were discontinuing the phone, even after they pushed the price down to $1 on a two-year contract only two months after its release.

 

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When the $1 sale was happening, AT&T Mobility CEO, Ralph de la Vega said: "We sold a bunch more when we lowered the price, we sold everything we had on that." He believes that the sale of the phone will help AT&T's corporate relationship with Facebook in the long run: "We have a great relationship with Apple just like we have a great relationship with Facebook," the executive said. "We look forward to working with them to make Home better."

 

It looks like Facebook Home put a dent in any Facebook phone that could be released, so did Facebook shoot themselves in the foot releasing Home, or did they attempt to build their own smartphone and work out that it's better to just have an app or service that hundreds of millions can use. I know which one I'd be doing...

Coooobra Attack! Paramount Australia announce G.I. Joe: Retaliation Blu-ray release

By: Ben Gourlay | More News: Celebrities & Entertainment | Posted: Jun 26, 2013 5:49 am

Following a reasonably successful theatrical run earlier this year, Paramount Australia have announced GI Joe: Retaliation will be released to purchase from August 14th in both 2D and 3D variants.

 

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Featuring Commentary by Director Jon Chu, multiple featurettes and deleted scenes, along with 7.1 audio, the Blu-ray will also feature an optional extended cut version with over 12 minutes of additional footage.

 

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The feature, which was delayed by almost nine months in order to facilitate 3D conversion and some re-shoots was received with scorn by the worlds critics, but average joe audiences (pun intended) warmed a little more to the sequel. I took a look at the film back in April, the review of which can be found here.

 

For those wondering, my 3D induced headache has only just recently subsided.

Saints Row IV banned in Australia because it features an 'alien anal probe'

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Gaming | Posted: Jun 26, 2013 5:32 am

Saints Row IV has been refused classification by the Australian Classification Board, and one of the reasons for its ban is quite hilarious - that reason? It includes an "alien anal probe".

 

 

Saints Row IV was refused classification for "interactive, visual depictions of implied sexual violence which are not justified by context" and "elements of illicit or proscribed drug use related to incentives or rewards." What does the alien anal probe do exactly? Well, for the curious:

 

The game includes a weapon referred to by the Applicant as an "Alien Anal Probe". The Applicant states that this weapon can be "shoved into enemy's backsides". The lower half of the weapon resembles a sword hilt and the upper part contains prong-like appendages which circle around what appears to be a large dildo which runs down the centre of the weapon. When using this weapon the player approaches a (clothed) victim from behind and thrusts the weapon between the victim's legs and then lifts them off the ground before pulling a trigger which launches the victim into the air. After the probe has been implicitly inserted into the victim's anus the area around their buttocks becomes pixelated highlighting that the aim of the weapon is to penetrate the victim's anus. The weapon can be used during gameplay on enemy characters or civilians. In the Board's opinion, a weapon designed to penetrate the anus of enemy characters and civilians constitutes a visual depiction of implied sexual violence that is interactive and not justified by context and as such the game should be Refused Classification.

Continue reading 'Saints Row IV banned in Australia because it features an 'alien anal probe'' (full post)

Routine will have you wetting your pants in both excitement, and fear - Oculus Rift support is included

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Virtual & Augmented Reality | Posted: Jun 26, 2013 5:25 am

Ok, so where the hell did this game come from? I've just watched the first in-game footage of Routine from Lunar Software and I'm really excited about it. It's a moon-based first-person shooter, and it looks incredible.

 

 

From the four-minute trailer, it looks like a beautiful hot mess of Half-Life 2 and System Shock 2 - two of my favorite games. It also has Oculus Rift support, which is at the top of my most-wanted gadget list. It looks freaky as hell, and I think with Oculus Rift on your head while playing this, it's going to be a truly incredible experience.

 

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What did you think of that trailer? I'm actually impressed that something not even on my radar can come up, and blow me away like this. I wasn't even shown much, but this trailer makes me want to play the game, especially with Rift.

JetBlue to offer in-flight Wi-Fi with 'Fly-Fi', is set for a Q3 launch

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Technology in Vehicles | Posted: Jun 26, 2013 4:35 am

Sitting on a flight without Internet access feels like torture, sure it's #firstworldproblems, but my entire life is digital. So to hear that JetBlue is pushing through with their Fly-Fi service, it gets me excited for the future of air travel.

 

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Fly-Fi is set to launch sometime before Q3, but this week JetBlue are conducting some tests with one of their Airbus A320s, which will include maneuvering the plane with some pretty unique weight loads, such as the rear center of gravity positioning you can see demonstrated in the picture, above.

 

Once this testing is done with, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) certification should come through, before the testing moves into the performance section. If this all goes to plan, passengers of JetBlue on Fly-Fi can expect Internet hooked up through ViaSat-1 from 30,000 feet in the air.

Leaked shots of LG's Optimus G2 appear online, features buttons on the back of the phone

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Jun 26, 2013 3:29 am

Thanks to @evleaks yet again, we have leaked photos of the upcoming LG Optimus G2 smartphone. We should see this new smartphone from the South Korean electronics giant unveiled at their event in New York on August 7.

 

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We should expect the Optimus G2 to feature Qualcomm's latest and greatest Snapdragon 800 processor, and 1080p display. Better yet, are the mysterious buttons on the back of the Optimus G2. Judging by the photos, they look like volume buttons - which would be an interesting change from the usual placement of the volume rocker on the side of the smartphone.

OUYA founder is 'pissed' that some original backers don't have their consoles - but what is she going to do about it?

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Gaming Consoles | Posted: Jun 26, 2013 2:53 am

I voiced my opinion a few days ago about backing the OUYA console on Kickstarter and not receiving my console yet, but now we're at the stage of it hitting retail shelves - and getting to the point of selling out at a few of them.

 

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OUYA founder, Julia Uhrman, is "pissed" because some of the Kickstarter backers haven't received their consoles yet, as she promised they would all receive their consoles before OUYA went to retail. Uhrman writes in a Kickstarter update that only the backers received: "I am pissed. Some of you have not yet received your OUYA -- and, to you, I apologize. I did not promise to ship to *most* of you before we hit store shelves. I promised to ship to *all* of you. I've been reading your comments, and we are working to solve this."

Continue reading 'OUYA founder is 'pissed' that some original backers don't have their consoles - but what is she going to do about it?' (full post)

After one million streams on Pandora, the music streaming service only paid the artist $16 - the US government is to blame

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Software | Posted: Jun 26, 2013 2:32 am

After streaming out one million times over Pandora, artist David Lowery received just $16.89. The songwriter and musician's song "Low" was streamed 1,159,000 times on Pandora in a three-month period, where he received that piddly amount of money.

 

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Spotify streamed his song 116,620 times and paid him $12.05 for this amount and lastly, Sirius XM streamed the song 179 times paying him $181.94 - more than $1 per stream, a much better amount. Who is to blame here from this piddly amount paid from Pandora? The US government, and more specifically, the US Congress.

 

US Congress are the ones who set the rates at which royalties are paid to artists. Lowery himself explains:

 

For you civilians webcasting rates are "compulsory" rates. They are set by the government (crazy, right?). Further since they are compulsory royalties, artists can not "opt out" of a service like Pandora even if they think Pandora doesn't pay them enough. The majority of songwriters have their rates set by the government, too, in the form of the ASCAP and BMI rate courts-a single judge gets to decide the fate of songwriters (technically not a "compulsory" but may as well be).

Analyst cuts Q3 Apple sales estimates, cites slower sales

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Jun 26, 2013 2:03 am

Things might not be perfect for everyone's favorite fruit company. Oppenheimer analyst Ittai Kidron has cut his expectations for Apple's third-quarter earnings. He notes that iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S sales are "stable," but iPhone 5 sell-through has been "mixed." He notes that with expectations that Apple will launch a new iPhone in September, sales will be lower ahead of the rumored launch.

 

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Kidron expects Apple to see earnings-per-share of $7.23 on $35 billion in revenue for the June quarter. For Apple's fourth quarter, Kidron expects Apple to see EPS of $8.84 on $38.9 billion in revenue. He also expects it to be a decent amount of time before something comes along to boost Apple's share price. iTV is what he believes to be the best chance for Apple's share price to increase.

 

Apple's stock briefly dropped below the $400 mark before bouncing back up to close at $402.63.

Google Transparency Report now shows malware rates by country

By: Trace Hagan | More News: Internet & Websites | Posted: Jun 26, 2013 1:31 am

Google has just announced an addition to its popular Transparency Report. Google will now be including information about malware, broken down by country. Google has included various interesting tidbits including how many users they protect through their SafeBrowsing technology, how long it takes for a site to become reinfected after being cleaned of malware, and various other bits of information Google has gleaned.

 

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Glancing over the data, it's easily seen that malware doesn't seem to be on the rise, unlike government data requests. India has the highest percentage--16, for those keeping count--of infected sites, but via total number of hosted sites, the United States is way ahead of India. The United States has two percent of all scanned sites infected with malware, but this amounts to two percent of 14 million sites. India is 16 percent of just 26,000 sites.

 

To check out Google's interactive map of malware infections, head to Google's updated Transparency Report.

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