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Facebook's new mobile ad network reaches beta

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Social Networking | Posted: Sep 19, 2012 7:24 am

Facebook has advertisements right now, down the sides of its website, as well as mobile apps - but now the social networking site will push ads on other handset-optimized websites and smartphone apps.




It has been reported by TechCrunch that Facebook have entered into beta testing of a new ad network that uses user data to display hyper-relevant ads on third-party territory. Normally they would rely on normal tracking cookies to get info on visitors' interests, but this platform scoops up information such as age, gender, likes, location, which apps your friends have used and other data points that get taken when a user logs into a site, or application with their Facebook credentials.


Facebook's new mobile ad solution lets advertisers bid on certain demographics, and uses existing networks like iAds and AdMob to push out appropriate ads based on anonymous ID's linked to Facebook accounts. Right now, Facebook are only pushing these ads to the mobile market, but don't be surprised if you see them hit your monitor in the near future.

BioWare co-founders retire from not just their company, but the gaming industry

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Sep 19, 2012 6:28 am

You might not know them by name, but Greg Zeschuk and Ray Muzyka are the co-founders of BioWare. Both men have announced their retirement not just from BioWare, which they founded close to 20 years ago, but from their positions at Electronic Arts.




On top of this, they're also heading out of the game industry completely. Muzyka is entering philanthropy, with Zeschuk heading into craft brewing. Muzyka took to his blog, where the now ex-game developer reflected on his years in the industry:


It's not often that you can truly say you were able to pursue and achieve your dream job; I know how lucky I am to be able to say that now, in my early 40s.


Zeschuk said:


Building BioWare over the years with Ray and the many other people involved was a once in a lifetime opportunity, and I'll cherish it always.

Microsoft wants more original Xbox content, hires ex-CBS executive

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Sep 19, 2012 5:30 am

Microsoft is pushing for original content on their Xbox 360, where they're hired a former CBS Network Television Entertainment Group president, Nancy Tellem. Tellem will be responsible for a new production studio in Los Angeles that will be creating interactive and linear content for the 360.




Tellem's role at Microsoft will be as President of Entertainment & Digital Media, meaning that she will also be in charge of pushing the Xbox more toward a consumer destination, rather than just a gaming console. Tellem has said:


The Xbox is already a consumer favorite, and we now have a tremendous opportunity to transform it into the center of all things entertainment - from games, music and fitness to news, sports, live events, television series and movies - so consumers have one destination for all their entertainment needs. I look forward to building a studio team that embraces the challenges of creating true interactive content that the Xbox platform supports and to work with talent to create content that will change the way entertainment content is experienced and delivered.

Sony announces redesigned, slimmer PlayStation 3 - released next week in Japan

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Gaming | Posted: Sep 19, 2012 4:49 am

We knew it was coming, but Sony have confirmed the news at the Tokyo Game Show just now. A slimmer, redesigned PlayStation 3 console will arrive in two colors, Black and Classic White, with the Black having two storage options - 250 and 500GB, with the Classic White arriving in just 250GB.




The redesigned PlayStation 3 is an amazing 50% slimmer than the original PS3 console, and 25% slimmer than the already-slim second version of the PS3. Sony has plans to launch the smaller PlayStation 3 in Japan next week on September 25.


The Black model will arrive on September 25 in the 250GB size, including Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception - Game of the Year Edition for $269.99, with the "Classic White" version not hitting shelves until November 22. The 500GB model will be available on October 30 to coincide with the release of Assassin's Creed III but hasn't had a price announced just yet.

Samsung throw 2GB LPDDR3 RAM, 128GB for mobile devices into mass production

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: RAM | Posted: Sep 19, 2012 4:32 am

Samsung have reportedly starting the mass production of what they consider the first 2GB LPDDR3 (low profile DDR) chip for mobile applications, just 10 months after the South Korean company started production on DDR2 memory.




Samsung have hit a milestone that sees the first time 2GB LPDDR3 density chips are made available as an all-in-one package, since they sport four LPDDR3 chips stacked together. Samsung says that LPDDR3 will be a requirement moving forward, as mobile devices ship with faster and faster processors, higher resolution displays, and 3D graphics. Samsung have also pointed toward the fact that LPDDR3 features a transfer rate of up to 1600Mbps per pin, which gives us transmission rates of up to 12.8GB/s at the package level - compared to LPDDR2 that maxed out at 1066Mbps, makes LPDDR3 parts around 50% faster.


LPDDR3 will usher in the ability of allowing real-time viewing of high-quality video, without having to download the content first. Samsung have also teased that the mass production of 128GB eMMC for mobile devices, which will see the new products being much faster than their predecessors, while offering the increased storage space. Samsung's 128GB eMMC products will sport NAND with a toggle DDR 2.0 interface, built on a 20nm manufacturing process.

Continue reading 'Samsung throw 2GB LPDDR3 RAM, 128GB for mobile devices into mass production' (full post)

Scientists developing injections that are 'completely pain-free', made from frickin' lasers

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Science, Space & Robotics | Posted: Sep 19, 2012 3:28 am

One of my greatest fears are injections - I don't fall onto the floor, ball up and cry - but I just hate them. I always expect they're going to bring me a world of hurt, and I can't wait for the day when this relatively primitive technology is replaced, well, my wishes are slowly coming true.




Scientists from the Seoul National University in South Korea are hoping to help people like myself, but replacing the sharp metal of an injection, with laser-powered injections - frickin' lasers! A paper published in the Optical Society's Optics Letters journal states that the new method uses laser pulses to create a precisely controlled stream, which is said to be around the width of a human hair - much more manageable.


The injections would then target the epidermal layer, which is a portion of the skin that has no nerve endings, which would create something researcher Jack Yoh calls a "completely pain-free" experience. The high-pressure steams are capable of delivering whatever the injection is being used for, without damaging skin tissue. Yoh spoke with the Optical Society, where he explains:


The impacting jet pressure is higher than the skin tensile strength and thus causes the jet to smoothly penetrate into the targeted depth underneath the skin, without any splashback of the drug.

Continue reading 'Scientists developing injections that are 'completely pain-free', made from frickin' lasers' (full post)

iPhone 5 review roundup - everyone seems impressed with the sixth-gen iPhone

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Sep 19, 2012 2:28 am

Apple's sixth-generation iPhone 5 is here, with the first slew of reviews overwhelmingly positive of the new iOS 6-powered smartphone. It seems that everyone has fallen in love with the iPhone 5, praising its lightweight, thinner feel, and super-fast speed.




The new 4-inch screen is loved, but apps have to be redone to work with the extra height. If app doesn't support the iPhone 5s larger, 4-inch screen, the apps will sport black bars at the top and bottom of the app, something reviewers point out. Here are some of the reviews:




Image quality is still among the best out there for a cameraphone, unimproved but quite impressive in varying conditions. What has improved, though, is the speed. Tap that big ol' thumb as quick as you can and the iPhone 5 will keep up, whereas the iPhone 4S eventually fell behind. It's at least on par with the Galaxy Nexus, which also has a ridiculously quick shooter.




I found the new iPhone screen much easier to hold and manipulate than its larger rivals and preferred it. In my view, Apple's approach makes the phone far more comfortable to use, especially one-handed.

Continue reading 'iPhone 5 review roundup - everyone seems impressed with the sixth-gen iPhone' (full post)

GDC Next gets announced, will debut in Los Angeles in November 2013

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Trade Shows | Posted: Sep 19, 2012 2:26 am

The organizers of the Game Developers Conference (GDC) have announced a new event to be held in Los Angeles in November next year, called GDC Next. GDC Next will feature two market-leading conferences, as well as a shared expo floor.




GDC Next is the reimagined successor to GDC Online, which will enjoy its final iteration in Austin, between October 9-11. App Developers Conference (ADC) is a brand new event, that will showcase key takeaways in app technology, creation, business and marketing outside of gaming. GDC Next and the ADC will debut as a co-lated event November 5-7 2013, at the Los Angeles Convention Center.


GDC Next will focus more on the smartphone, tablet, social, independent, cloud and other form of gaming side of things. The new show will be important for designers, programmers, architects, producers, artists, marketers, or business people to attend, to get advice, or see how great games, and making money from the newest areas of the gaming industry. ADC will focus on the development, UI, marketing and business-side of apps.

Continue reading 'GDC Next gets announced, will debut in Los Angeles in November 2013' (full post)

Acer's second-generation Chromebook to arrive next month

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Laptops | Posted: Sep 19, 2012 1:49 am

Acer's Cromia Chromebook is looking to go second-generation, with sources telling DigiTimes that we should expect the new Chromebook line to hit next month to combat Microsoft's Surface tablets. Acer's new Chromebooks will start shipping just as the company phases out their line of netbooks.




Acer hopes to ship 200,000 or so of their 11.6-inch Chromebooks per month once they launch, with reports saying that the units are already in production. Acer's Cromia notebook reportedly only shipped 5,000 units in the five months after its launch, which is quite disastrous in the grand scheme of things.


We could definitely see Acer trying harder this time around, as the company has not been happy with Windows RT in the past, with Acer CEO J.T. Wang saying last month that the company was "waiting for the signal of the consumers' enthusiasm" with regard to Windows 8.

Telstra offering 1GB additional data each month for new customers

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Sep 19, 2012 1:11 am

Telstra are offering customers who sign up to their $80 and above Every Day Connect plans for 24 months, 1GB of extra data allowance per month, for the first twelve months. The offer lasts from today, until the 31st of October.




Telstra's $80 Every Day Connect Plan includes $800 worth of calls and MMS, as well as unlimited SMS, and unlimited voice calling between 7am-7pm every night to standard Australian numbers. This plan comes with 1.5GB of data, meaning it gets 2.5GB total with the offer Telstra have until October 31.


Business customers haven't been left out, with the telco offering the $80 and above Business Performance Plan, or $60 and above Business Performance BYO plan receiving 1GB of extra data every month for the first twelve months of a new 24-month contract. Considering Telstra are about the launch the 4G-capable iPhone 5, this is definitely music to customers' ears. You can check out Telstra's 4G phone range here.

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