HBO announced that a standalone, online streaming of its service would launch sometime in 2015, giving cord-cutters one more reason to consider ditching their cable or satellite service. The service will be designed more for the 10 million potential customers in the U.S. that don't currently have cable or TV service, as content providers look for new ways to expand.
The company will work with "current partners" and could expand to new content partners, but HBO CEO Richard Plepler didn't disclose additional details about what customers can expect.
This is a significant step forward for HBO, which traditionally was happy to work with pay-TV providers, but HBO and other providers have been under pressure to innovate.
Around 100 cybercriminal kingpins help wreak havoc on the world, according to Troels Oerting, the head of the Europol Cybercrime Center. Trying to crack down on cybercriminals can be a daunting task, especially trying to bring them to justice, as Web-based attack activity largely remains a borderless bureaucratic nightmare.
"We roughly know who they are," Oerting recently said. "If we can take them out of the equation then the rest will fall down. This is not a static number, it will increase unfortunately. We can still cope but the criminals have more resources and they do not have obstacles. They are driven by greed and profit and they produce malware at a speed that we have difficulties catching up with."
Not surprisingly, many of the leading cybercriminal bosses are in Russian-speaking countries - though cybersecurity experts also warned of growing threats from China. Trying to bring these criminals to justice is near impossible, with Russia and other Eastern European nations ignoring the western world when it comes to apprehending these criminals, Europol noted.
Banking giant JPMorgan Chase was victimized by cybercriminals, and more than 80 million customers are at risk due to stolen customer information. JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon said private businesses and federal governments need to better cooperate to defend against a growing wave of sophisticated cyberattacks.
JPMorgan reportedly spends upwards of $250 million per year - along with a security staff of 1,000 employees - to help try to defend against cyberattacks. Unfortunately, their efforts were unsuccessful, as hackers are keen to try to compromise financial institutions. JPMorgan has discussed the breach with other banks, in an effort to prevent them from being victimized by the same type of attacks.
"Cyber is a big deal," Dimon recently said. It's going to be an ongoing battle, and unfortunately battles will be lost."
4K is barely here and getting into the market, but we already have some great monitors in the Acer XB280HK, which is powered by NVIDIA's G-SYNC technology. Forget all that, though, as news is coming out about 8K, and that both NVIDIA and AMD are looking at ways to make this insanely high-res technology happen.
PCGamesn.com talked with AMD's Chief Gaming Scientist, Richard Huddy, who said: "If we get to a display resolution of about 8k horizontally and about 6k vertically then, for a player with 20/20 vision, they will have something that is close to perfect for their visual system". After that, the human eye finds it hard to see any more detail on screen, which means we probably won't see a huge rush for 16K or 32K (can you even believe we're talking about resolutions this high?). Huddy continued: "That's about 48 million pixels to fill the field of view".
NVIDIA also had something to say about 8K, with the Head of GeForce GTX, Scott Herkelman saying: "8K, or anything above 4K is going to require multiple GPUs. 4K for most GPUs is pretty tough, the 980 handles it well but it's still one of those things that the more GPUs you have the better it looks". GPU horsepower isn't the only thing that needs to power the resolution, but imagine what kind of refresh rate is going to be there, and how much bandwidth DisplayPort, or whatever display connectivity is being used, is going to require.
PhoneArena held a blind camera comparison test between the iPhone 6 and the Galaxy Note 4, with over 6,000 of its readers, with Samsung's phablet coming out on top.
From the 6,000 readers, just under 43% of them found the Galaxy Note 4's pictures to look better, with just 22% choosing the iPhone 6 as having the better rear-snapper. These numbers are even better considering the blind camera comparison included other smartphones, with some of the biggest devices released yet being tested. This included the LG G3, Galaxy Note 3, Galaxy S5 and Sony's Xperia Z3, all polled at under 12%.
This isn't a 'the Galaxy Note 4 takes better pictures than the iPhone 6, period' as PhoneArena only snapped shots in strong lighting, and didn't shoot in low-light or bad conditions. The site has promised that a more detailed camera comparison test is coming, something we should expect in the coming weeks.
The return of Killer Instinct has been well received, with Killer Instinct Season 2 nearly here. Iron Galaxy has teased the new lineup of Season 2, showing off a series of silhouettes.
Xbox Wire is reporting that Microsoft will introduce the new characters, where we can expect an "ancient Babylonian sorcerer, an avenging ghost, a battle-hardened war golem" and more. The entire cast from Season 1 is also being rebalanced, will learn new moves and some characters will also receive enhanced aerial combos.
Iron Galaxy will also be making some bigger changes to the game itself, something that will include a radical rehaul of the UI, progression system, and graphics. Killer Instinct Season 1 was running at 720p, but Season 2 will be running at 900p. Season 2 kicks off tomorrow, with two new playable characters: TJ Combo and Maya.
The company plastered ads between the awesome premiere of The Walking Dead on AMC, showing some Droid-looking characters in various scenarios. Google has used an interesting tagline for the new ads: "Be Together. Not the Same". We should hopefully hear about the new Nexus devices, as well as the new version of Android sometime this week.
The CCG Magic: The Gathering has had a long shelf life following its release in 1993, which continues to bring in new fans for the traditional game. Recording an unboxing style YouTube video for a vintage set of cards from 1993, the auction house/ fan site VintageMagic was taken aback when the set unveiled a rare card called 'The Black Lotus'. Another copy of the card sold recently for nearly $28,000 USD.
Just over 1100 copies of this card were originally printed, with most in the hands of cashed-up collectors. I wonder how many continue to be tied up in sealed sets around the world?
Google is laying out plans to invest $500 million into Magic Leap, and its "cinematic reality" technology. The $500 million investment hopes to see Magic Leap reach its goal, building the next big VR device.
Re/code is reporting that Magic Leap's technology can "deliver a more realistic 3-D experience than the kind offered by current technologies, including Oculus Rift, the 3-D headset". Earlier in the year, Magic Leap raised $50 million, but an injection of a half a billion dollars will surely boost things up considerably.
Rony Abovitz, the founder of Magic Leap, explains his idea of "cinematic reality", where he said: "Those are old terms - virtual reality, augmented reality. They have legacy behind them. They are associated with things that didn't necessarily deliver on a promise or live up to expectations. We have the term cinematic reality because we are disassociated with those things. When you see this, you will see that this is computing for the next 30 or 40 years. To go farther and deeper than we're going, you would be changing what it means to be human".
Undoubtedly the star of the summer blockbuster season, especially in light of the pre-release uncertainty 'Guardians of the Galaxy' ultimately grossed almost $700 million worldwide in its theatrical release. Now, the film is headed to Blu-ray just in time for Christmas.
Released on December 3rd in Australia and on the 9th in the United States, in both 2D and 3D versions, the film will come with a light selection of bonus features, including Audio Commentary by director James Gunn, Deleted Scenes, Featurettes, a gag reel and a promotional tie-in for the upcoming 'The Avengers: The Rise of Ultron'.
'Guardians of the Galaxy 2' has been greenlit by the studio, for release in July 2017.