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TweakTown News Posts - Page 61

Sony CEO doesn't think cyberattack will cause 'upheaval' for company

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Hacking & Security | Posted: Jan 8, 2015 10:31 pm

Sony CEO Kazuo Hirai complemented employees and partners for their support and patience following a late 2014 cyberattack. Hirai is optimistic that Hollywood actors and companies will continue to choose to work with the company in 2015 and later down the road - despite how damning some of the information leaked was, likely hurting SPE's reputation.


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"We are still reviewing the effects of the cyber attack," Hirai told reporters during CES. "However, I do not see it as something that will cause a material upheaval on Sony Pictures business operations."


Meanwhile, the company is still analyzing full effects of the attack and data breach, which revealed former and current employee personal information, leaked emails, unreleased films, and other company-related information.

New Steam sales covers Anime related games

By: Chris Smith | More News: Gaming | Posted: Jan 8, 2015 10:25 pm

Today Valve announced their first Anime Games Sale through their popular gaming and messenger platform Steam.


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Beginning today and running through until Monday the 12th at 10AM PST, this sale features games up to 75% off - in true Steam fashion.


Their announcement points out that some of their largest titles on special include Agarest: Generations of War, Long Live the Queen, and Analogue: A Hate Story.

Continue reading 'New Steam sales covers Anime related games' (full post)

Much like adults, kids must also learn to put phones away before bed

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Jan 8, 2015 8:54 pm

Children using smartphones before bed leads to later bedtimes, less sleep, and increased fatigue, a study from UC Berkeley recently confirmed. Kids who have "small screen" electronics in the same room they sleep in get an average of 21 minutes less sleep than children who don't have access to electronics before bed.


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More than half (54 percent) of fourth and seventh graders reported sleeping near their smartphone, as parents are being urged to keep smartphones away from children close to bed time.


"Kids need to learn to deal with fear of missing out and they need to learn to give their brains a real rest," said Dr. Catherine Steiner-Adair, author of "The Big Disconnect: Protecting Childhood and Family Relationships in the Digital Age," in a statement to Yahoo Parenting. "Sleep is so important, and having that phone next to the bed - when they get up to go to the bathroom, they check it, which can lead to 10 minutes or two hours online. Their psychological dependency on the phone is increased if they have it with them all the time."

Continue reading 'Much like adults, kids must also learn to put phones away before bed' (full post)

iPhone 6 helps iOS eat away at Google Android's smartphone lead

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Jan 8, 2015 8:14 pm

The quarter ending November 2014 saw drastic change thanks to the Apple iPhone 6 and 6 Plus launch, with iOS able to chomp into Google Android's lead. The iPhone 6 was the highest selling phone during that specific quarter, accounting for 19 percent of all US smartphone sales, according to the Kantar Worldpanel research group.


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"A decline in Android market share does not necessarily translate into bad news for all the ecosystem's players," said Carolina Milanesi, Chief of Research at Kantar Worldpanel ComTech, in a statement. "The choice of brands and devices within the ecosystem empowers consumers to drive different fortunes for the players in it."


Apple iPhone sales racked up 47.4 of smartphone sales in the United States, 4.3 percent higher year-over-year - and iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus are reportedly still going strong. Android still controls 69.9 percent of the mobile OS lead in Europe, dropping 3.2 percent year-over-year.

Report indicates US border drones are overly expensive, ineffective

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Science, Space & Robotics | Posted: Jan 8, 2015 8:03 pm

It looks like the US government has shiny toys, and defense contractors are getting paid, but border drones cost $12,255 per hour to operate - and aren't very effective in detecting human smuggling or drug running.


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The DHS has a fleet of 10 Predator B drones that are used to patrol selected locations of the US-Mexico border in Arizona and Texas, however, they logged just 5,102 hours of the planned 23,296 total flight hours per year. The DHS has invested $360 million into the program since 2005, and the department wants to spend upwards of $443 million for another 14 drones.


"Notwithstanding the significant investment, we see no evidence that the drones contribute to a more secure border, and there is no reason to invest additional taxpayer funds at this time," said John Roth, inspector general for the Department of Homeland Security, in a statement.

Continue reading 'Report indicates US border drones are overly expensive, ineffective' (full post)

Purchase Futuremark 3DMark for $4.99 in Steam sale for next 48 hours

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Software | Posted: Jan 8, 2015 6:50 pm

The Daily Deal on Steam is Futuremark's 3DMark Advanced Edition, helping users test Microsoft Windows PC-based machines. The deal is live for the next 48 hours, and started at 10:00AM PST on Thursday, January 8 - with an 80 percent savings, so it only costs $4.99.


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The Advanced Edition allows users to run Fire Strike Ultra, which is the only 4K Ultra HD benchmark currently available. In addition, the software enables CrossFire/SLI testing for multi-GPU machines, use benchmark looping, and see in-depth performance graphs of all benchmark runs.

Strategy Analytics: Streaming music hurting music industry revenue

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Jan 8, 2015 6:39 pm

The music industry is struggling to generate revenue from streaming music, as it is seeing paid digital download sales dropping, according to the "Will Royalty Crisis Defeat the Music Streaming Industry" report from Strategy Analytics.


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Popular streaming music services Pandora and Spotify are paying extremely high acquisition costs as subscribers and listener figures increase, making it difficult for them to get ahead of the cost curve. Pandora generates 82 percent of its revenue based on advertising, while Spotify earns 91 percent of its revenue from user subscriptions.


"Technology is evolving and changing the way consumers discover, listen to, share, and interact with music, but it is also a significant factor in the decline of music industry revenues," said Leika Kawasaki, Digital Media Strategies analyst and report author. "Many artists feel they are under compensated by streaming services, but as currently structured the underlying economics won't support higher royalty payments by these services, particularly for free ad-supported services."

Continue reading 'Strategy Analytics: Streaming music hurting music industry revenue' (full post)

Sony pushes back PlayStation 4 console release date in China

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Gaming Consoles | Posted: Jan 8, 2015 5:47 pm

Sony has confirmed it is pushing back the expected Jan. 11 launch date of its PlayStation 4 game console in China, and must deal with "various factors" that caused the rescheduling. The Japanese electronics company plans to initially file for 30 game licenses with the Chinese government, and begin expanding its software offerings inside of the country.


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Both Sony and Microsoft face long-term issues selling their consoles in China, as PC and mobile gaming have become more prominent - and the Chinese government has strict censorship rules in place, so it's possible leading titles in the US and European markets can't be sold in China.


The Chinese Ministry of Culture, the regulatory body responsible for video game content, is never in a hurry while approving licenses for foreign video games that will be sold inside of China. It is suspected for the Microsoft Xbox One launch also being pushed back, as there are restrictions on video games that have extreme violence, political content, or otherwise seen as profane.

FTC worries about privacy, security related to connected devices

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Hacking & Security | Posted: Jan 8, 2015 5:31 pm

CES 2015 - Smart and connected technologies accessing the Internet of Things (IoT) have generated significant interest during CES 2015. Manufacturers mainly promoted the benefits of their connected devices, though cybersecurity experts and government regulators want consumers to be aware of potential risks.


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Security and privacy concerns could become major headaches for consumers, manufacturers, and security experts embracing connected devices. Collection of personal data with - and often times without - consumer consent, how that information is used, and the theft of data currently are the biggest security concerns.


"Any device that is connected to the Internet is at risk of being hijacked," said Edith Ramirez, Federal Trade Commission (FTC) chairwoman, in a statement made during CES. "Moreover, the risks that unauthorized access create intensify as we adopt more and more devices linked to our physical safety, such as our cars, medical care and homes."

Continue reading 'FTC worries about privacy, security related to connected devices' (full post)

Lenovo wants to take its smartphones to US, other lucrative markets

By: Michael Hatamoto | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Jan 8, 2015 5:13 pm

CES 2015 - Chinese electronics company Lenovo has successfully led its PCs and laptops into the United States and Europe, hoping to mimic that success with its smartphones.


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"The next step for Chinese smartphone makers is to go overseas," said Yang Yuanging, chairman and CEO for Lenovo, in an interview with Sina news at CES. "But whether they are able to compete in the global market remains an issue."


Based on global smartphone shipments alone, Lenovo was No. 4 in the world after shipping 16.9 million units during Q3 of 2014, according to IDC figures. However, its acquisition of Motorola will bump its market share from 5.2 percent in Q3 2014 up to 7.4 percent currently, leapfrogging Xiaomi and now trailing behind Samsung and Apple - though will face a tough road to try catch up to either company.

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