For those out there with much more money to splash on a new smartphone, Vertu has just unveiled its new Aster smartphone, a mid-tier, titanium-built, Android-powered smartphone with a whopping $6,900 price tag.
What do you get for close to $7,000? A 4.7-inch 1080p display, 5.1-inch 117-carat sapphire screen, 2.3GHz quad-core Snapdragon 801 chip, a 13-megapixel rear-facing camera and 2.1-megapixel front facer, with the rear-facing snapper certified by Hasselblad, the company who had its technology in the cameras in the 1969 Moon landing.
64GB of internal flash storage, a 2,275mAh battery, front stereo speakers, NFC, Qi wireless charging, and LTE also make the cut. Vertu's CEO said: "Vertu is not here to follow general mass market mobile trends; our technology is leading edge but it doesn't have to be bleeding edge. The same goes for the physical design of Vertu products. The nature of our customers and of our products mean that we have to develop what is right for them, not follow generic broader industry design themes that may be more fleeting than those of the luxury market". The CEO added: "Many of our customers desire and appreciate compact size Vertu products that comfortably fit the inside the pocket of a well-tailored suit or in an expensive clutch bag".
According to Recode, Apple is hosting a new media event on October 16, where it will unveil new iPads and iMacs. Recode's source state that the Cupertino-based iGiant will unveil its latest slates and revamped iMacs at the event.
If the latest rumors are true, we should see Retina-powered desktops unveiled, which will be nice considering its 2014 and all. The previously rumored unveiling date was October 21, so it looks like Apple is bringing it forward a few days, and as usual, we will be covering everything unveiled from the event here at TweakTown.
Middle-earth - Shadow of Mordor is the latest game that is pushing PCs to their limits, with an Ultra HD graphics setting that requires a 3.7GB download, and up to 6GB of VRAM.
But, how does Shadow of Mordor compare against the Xbox One and PlayStation 4 versions of the game? Well, the comparion version is above, with Mordor on Ultra, but without the Ultra HD textures enabled. This means the PC version can look even better than what is displayed above. Have you picked up Shadow of Mordor? If so, what do you think of it so far?
Earlier this month, Robert Downey Jr. sought to hose down speculation he would don the Iron Man armour for any more stand alone features. Well just a few weeks later, it seems he might be reconsidering his stance - although it does come with one very big stipulation.
In what can only be considered negotiation through the press, in an interview with Deadline Hollywood to promote his new film 'The Judge', Downey Jr. seems keen to give Marvel and studio owner Disney a message: Get Mel Gibson and you've got me.
Following a discussion on the Hollywood rehabilitation of Mel Gibson after his regrettable comments a number of years ago, Deadline asked Downey Jr. point blank "How about the idea you'll do that movie if Mel directs it?" to which he answered "correct" before following up with "That movie would be bananas."
We'd tend to agree. Gibson has previously helmed 'Braveheart' and 'The Passion of The Christ' and was last behind the camera in 2006's 'Apocalypto'.
German luxury automaker Mercedes-Benz is expanding its autonomous driving program from the Autobahn to the United States. Mercedes recently announced plans to test self-driving technology at the Concord Naval Weapons Station in the San Francisco Bay Area. This is perfect timing for Mercedes, able to use the old military base before it is turned over to the city for redevelopment.
Mercedes will conduct simulation tests with autonomous vehicles using the base's 20 miles of paved roads, including technology that allows vehicles to communicate with one another and traffic lights.
"There's very limited connected infrastructure right now, and that's what we're trying to bring and expand throughout the country," said Jack Hall, Contra Costa Transportation Authority (CCTA) program manager, in an interview with local media. "The goal is to not have cars idling at stoplights, to reduce congestion and (achieve) the vision of zero automobile fatalities."
With Mars being orbited by India's satellite Mangalyaan, it has spurred scientists back here on Earth for their next mission, with NASA and the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) signing a new agreement to work together on the future exploration of Mars.
The two space agencies also agreed to collaborate on observations and scientific analysis from their respective satellites that are orbiting Mars. With India now the first Asian nation to research to reach Mars, and the only country in the world that succeeded on its first attempt. NASA has its own Maven satellite that entered Mars' orbit two days before Mangalyaan arrived, with Maven the first spacecraft to explore the upper atmosphere of Mars, and Mangalyaan studying the surface of the planet, in search for evidence of methane, and more.
NASA spent north of $740 million on its latest journey to Mars, with India spending just a tenth of that, at a cost of $74 million. Analysts have said that this puts India directly into the big league when it comes to space, nudging out China and Japan in space exploration in one small step for the country. So far, Chinese and Japanese missions to orbit Mars have failed. In six more years, the two space agencies hope to launch NASA-ISRO Synthetic Aperture Radar, or NISAR. NISAR will observe the Earth, measuring changes in our land surface. NASA said in a statement: "Nisar will improve our understanding of key impacts of climate change and advance our knowledge of natural hazards".
Just weeks out from Google's unveiling of the 5.9-inch Nexus 6 smartphone, the NVIDIA Tegra K1-powered Nexus 9 tablet and Android L, the company has reportedly met with the executives of Cyanogen Inc. to talk about an acquisition, which Cyanogen denied.
Cyanogen is now talking of a Series C round of funding, with some large tech companies and investors in deep talks with the company, which seeks a valuation of close to $1 billion. How can a company who makes a modified version of Android be worth that much money? Simple: Cyanogen is reportedly in talks with taking its CyanogenMod OS to India through a manufacturer called Micromax. Micromax, along with Samsung, own the majority of the smartphone market in India, which could be just what Cyanogen needs to get its OS into the hands of tens of millions of consumers.
With Google being denied the chance to acquire Cyanogen, it could mean a different direction for Android, considering many experts prefer CyanogenMod even over stock Android, which is what Google places on its Nexus devices. With the Android Silver program in trouble, and a failed acquisition of a company that heavily modifies, and sometimes for the better your mobile OS, where will Google go now if it had its hopes on this acquisition going through?
Monolith's new Shadow of Mordor is pushing PCs a little harder in the graphics department, but the effects are good enough to require a 3.7GB download of the games Ultra HD texture pack. This texture packs increases the in-game graphics with higher resolution textures, recommended only for GPUs with 6GB of VRAM, like NVIDIA's GeForce GTX Titan.
But as it stands, there is an issue with the texture pack, as users are reporting that even with the Ultra preset for textures enabled, the game still runs on High quality. There aren't many GPUs on the market with 6GB of VRAM (or more) on them, apart from a select group of Radeon HD 7970s and R9 290Xs, and a couple of NVIDIA's GeForce GTX 780 and 780 Ti, apart from the company's higher-end GTX Titan series.
The game has a built-in benchmark which is easy for comparing your system against friends, and to see the averages, etc increase with an upgrade to your system. We will have benchmarks using Shadow or Mordor shortly, so check back over the weekend.
It has been ten years since Lost premiered, and with the controversial finale four years ago, the Executive Producer behind the show has said that the return of Lost is simply, in the words of Agent Smith, "inevitable".
Carton Cuse talked with Digital Spy, where he said: "Disney owns the franchise, it made them a lot of money, it's hard to imagine it will just sit there idly forever. Damon (Lindelof) and I told our story in that world and I assume someone will come along, hopefully having been inspired by our story, or our version of the story, and want to tell their own story".
"It's like the Narnia chronicles. There are seven books, they were all written by CS Lewis, but they all visit Narnia at different times and different configurations and different ways", he continued. Cuse added: "Someone is going to come up with a way to tell another Lost story. I think it's inevitable. I don't know what it is or how it would work, but I can't imagine something else won't be done with the franchise".
Now that Christopher Nolan is finished with the Dark Knight movies, and Zak Snyder taking Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice with Ben Affleck playing Batman/Bruce Wayne, who has Gone Girl out in theaters, its time for Interstellar.
Interstellar, if you haven't heard of it by now, is Nolan's new sci-fi spectacle that has our "time on Earth coming to an end", where we send explorers on a mission, including Matthew McConaughey from the recent True Detective, and Dark Knight's Catwoman, Anne Hathaway, that is the most important in human history. They traverse the stars, in Nolan's excellent work in 70mm IMAX, which should impress the fans of super-detail cinema, especially from Nolan.
Interstellar is out November 5, and in IMAX a few days early than cinemas.