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Nintendo confirms Black 3DS XL American launch on August 11

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Gaming Consoles | Posted: Jul 30, 2013 7:05 pm

Last week, speculation arose that Nintendo would launch the black edition of its 3DS XL handheld console over this past weekend. The weekend came and went with no black 3DS XL showing up online or in retail stores, and we are sure this was a big letdown for some. Those who were bummed out about the no show will be excited to learn that Nintendo has officially released a launch date for the device.

 

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Sunday, August 11, will be the magical day when we finally see the black 3DS XL arrive in stores and online for retail sales. Coincidentally, that is the same day that the new Mario & Luigi: Dream Team game arrives. No pricing info was released on the 3DS XL Black Edition, but with other colors retailing for around $200, we expect it to be priced in the same range.

 

In a statement, Nintendo said:

 

The system is launching on the same day as Nintendo 3DS game Mario & Luigi: Dream Team, so fans that pick up a new black system or already own a Nintendo 3DS can also play the exciting new entry in the much-loved Mario & Luigi role-playing series. Aug. 11 will be a classy day to become a new Nintendo 3DS owner. Just make sure there is room in your tuxedo pocket or fancy purse!

Return to Rapture in the next BioShock Infinite DLC

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Gaming | Posted: Jul 30, 2013 6:03 pm

Gamers who miss navigating their way through Rapture in BioShock Infinite will soon see a return to their favorite underwater utopian city. In the upcoming BioShock Infinite DLC, gamers will once again return to Rapture with the storyline set on New Year's Eve, 1958. This time frame takes place just before the bombing that lead to the events of the first BioShock game.

 

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Both Booker and Elizabeth take on the roles of a private investigator and a femme fatale, with Elizabeth apparently tricking Booker into thinking that she has a way for him to leave Rapture. The DLC, titled Buried at Sea, will be split into two parts with the Booker storyline being released first at some point this fall, while Elizabeth's story will be told next year when part two is released.

 

 

Irrational Games, the developer of BioShock Infinite, says that Buried at Sea's gameplay has been adjusted to give gamers "an original BioShock combat experience that merges the best parts of BioShock and BioShock Infinite. A combination that will involve new weapons, new Plasmids and Vigors, Tears, Sky-Lines, and Big Daddies."

Zynga sheds three top executives in less than a month

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Gaming | Posted: Jul 30, 2013 5:05 pm

A new report from Bloomberg this morning is shedding some light on the state of Zynga, the once king of social gaming. According to the report, three of the company's top executives have left the company including: John Osvald, SVP of games; Jesse Janosov, a Zynga VP who ran Zynga's casino department; and Nathan Etter, Vice President of games.

 

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These departures come hot on the heels of Zynga switching out CEO Mark Pincus with former president of Microsoft's Interactive Entertainment, Don Mattrick, at the beginning of July. It is still unclear if these departures are a direct result of the new CEO or if they decided to leave the sinking ship before anyone else did.

Intel axes facial recognition from upcoming set-top box

By: Charles Gantt | More News: HT & Movies | Posted: Jul 30, 2013 4:02 pm

A lot of discussions were sparked when Intel first announced that its upcoming set-top box would feature facial recognition technology. The company came under fire from privacy rights advocates, as well as those who fear that this would lead to a subscription-based model where each individual in the home would have to purchase a subscription just to watch content from the device.

 

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This morning, a new report is suggesting that Intel has decided to drop this feature entirely and that the set-top box would be shipped without the imaging camera. Intel Media's Eric Huggers says that the decision to drop the facial recognition features is due to the camera's performance in low light situations, as well as the numerous privacy concerns voiced by prospective customers. The moral of the story here is that some companies will listen if enough of their customer base speaks out.

Vimeo, Redbox Instant, and Plex announce plans to support Chromecast

By: Charles Gantt | More News: HT & Movies | Posted: Jul 30, 2013 3:04 pm

Google's Chromecast is making huge waves in the home theater market, and with the device completely selling out everywhere in less than 1 week, other companies are taking notice in a big way. This morning, we are hearing world that three of the biggest names in video streaming are voicing their interest in the device.

 

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On Monday, GigaOM reported that Vimeo, the HD video streaming giant, has tossed its hat into the ring with the company's VP of mobile, Nick Alt, confirming interest in Chromcast. "We're excited about the emerging opportunities bridging mobile to Connected TV and we look forward to offering Chromecast support in our products." he said. Additionally, Redbox Instant says that they would love to bring their service to Chromecast. My favorite media server / media client Plex has also voiced its intentions to develop an app for the device.

 

Google has said that Pandora, AOL, and The Washington Post are all working on dedicated apps for Chromecast and that HBO is also looking into bringing its HBO Go service onto the device. Currently, Google's Chromecast streams content from Netflix, YouTube, Google Play, and Webpages, but if today's news is any indication, things are about to explode for Chromecast!

Samsung releases official hands-on video of Galaxy S4 Zoom

By: Charles Gantt | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Jul 30, 2013 2:05 pm

This morning, Samsung has released an official hands-on video of its Galaxy S4 Zoom camera phone. In the video, we see the phone in both Black Mist and White Frost trim. The host also shows off the low light flash-less performance as well as how nice the Xenon flash is over traditional smartphone LED-based flashes. Also featured is the Galaxy S4 Zoom's "Zoom Ring" which lets you navigate the phone's features, as well as rotating it to zoom in on photos. The video is about 10 minutes long, but almost every new feature is covered by the host.

 

 

A quote from the Samsung page said:

 

The GALAXY S4 Zoom lets you talk, shoot, and share with your loved ones wherever you are. It functions as a smartphone, so you can make calls and send texts, plus it offers 10x optical zoom along with all of the added benefits of a Samsung SMART CAMERA (macro mode, night mode--no problem!). The zoom ring lets you move seamlessly between phone and camera without having to hang up. It's the device that will keep you connected in more ways than one.

Continue reading 'Samsung releases official hands-on video of Galaxy S4 Zoom' (full post)

US Army will use Unreal Engine 3 for training simulations

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Gaming | Posted: Jul 30, 2013 12:25 pm

Intelligent Decisions is a company that creates virtual training simulations for the US Army Research, Development and Engineering Command, and they've just acquired a license to use Epic Games' Unreal Engine 3.

 

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VP of Simulation and Training, Clarence Pape, said that the company will use the graphics engine to improve the movements of autonomous avatars in its Dismounted Soldier Training System, as well as adding haptic feedback for incoming fire, full skeletal controls and environmental variation.

 

Intelligent Decisions secured the license for Unreal Engine 3 from Applied Research Associates, Virtual Heroes and Epic through the Unreal Government Network. The Unreal Government Network, whilst sounding like a joke, is very real, and is a program that handles government contracts for the Unreal engine.

RumorTT: Next-gen Nexus 7 will be made by LG, not ASUS

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Jul 30, 2013 11:29 am

The refreshed second generation Nexus 7 is barely even here and we're already reporting on the next-gen, 2014 refresh of Google's Nexus 7 tablet. For the first two Nexus 7 tablets, Google worked with ASUS, but it looks like they might be working with LG on the 2014 model.

 

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The news comes from a research note from KGI Securities' Ming-Chi Kuo, which was picked up by 9to5Google, who says that Google will reportedly dump ASUS for their 2014 Nexus 7 model and use LG, who built their Nexus 4 smartphone, instead.

 

This wouldn't be strange, but you'd have to wonder what would make Google change from ASUS, who have made both Nexus 7 devices without an issue, to LG? Maybe because ASUS have more Android-based devices that compete with the Nexus 7? What are your thoughts on the rumor?

RumorTT: Foxconn hiring 90,000 workers to prepare for iPhone 5S

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Jul 30, 2013 10:31 am

We've heard so many whispers when it comes to the iPhone 5S, but according to unnamed sources of Focus Taiwan, Foxconn are now hiring 90,000 new workers for their Shenzhen production facility to help them fill "massive orders from Apple" that will include both the iPhone 5S and the new budget iPhone.

 

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The iPhone 5S is rumored to feature an A7 processor, improved graphics, 2GB of RAM and a 12-megapixel camera with a dual-LED flash. We should also expect it to arrive with iOS 7 by default. I'm hoping that we see a departure from the boring design of the iPhone, and something refreshing, and new. I know I'm asking for too much, and we'll just get a slightly better iPhone 5.

 

The budget iPhone on the other hand, which has been rumored to be named the "iPhone 5C" would feature a 4-inch display (like the older iPhones), 1GB of RAM, and a plastic case that comes in multiple colors.

Origin PC launch Haswell-based gaming notebook with GTX 765M GPU

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Laptops | Posted: Jul 30, 2013 9:21 am

Origin PC have just unveiled their new EON 13-S notebook, which features a 13.3-inch LED backlit Full HD IPS display (with a matte finish). Inside of the new EON 13-S, we have a fourth-generation "Haswell" Core processor from Intel, and NVIDIA's GeForce GTX 765M GPU.

 

 

You can choose between four different Intel Core i7 processors, starting with the i7 4700MQ clocked at 2.4GHz, i7 4800MQ @ 2.7GHz, i7 4900MQ running at 2.8GHz or the i7 Extreme 4930MX clocked at 3.0GHz. All four processors are quad-core parts with Intel's Turbo Boost technology. Origin PC have decided to offer up some great memory options, too.

 

For starters, we have memory options of 4GB, 8GB and 16GB which arrive in either generic 1,333MHz DIMMs, or you can opt for the much better Corsair Vengeance 1,600MHz sticks. There's room for three HDDs, including dual mSATA and RAID support. There's options for an external optical drive, Creative Sound Blaster audio, Killer Wireless card and even a Hauppauge WinTV Tuner through USB.

Continue reading 'Origin PC launch Haswell-based gaming notebook with GTX 765M GPU' (full post)

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