Just when you though the console wars had died down and the battlefield had began to quieten down, a new report from Sony has came in that refuels the fight. Today Sony announced that its PlayStation 4 is now the best selling console in Australia despite Microsoft claiming it's Xbox One dominated the market down under in 2013.
Unfortunately, while the PS4 may be the best selling console in Australia at the moment, the country is still suffering from stock shortages of both consoles, and these new numbers could be greatly affected if Sony managed to get new shipments in before Microsoft did. The same can be said for Microsoft's claim of dominance in 2013, as it did manage to get more stock into the country than Sony did, and had a head start of a few weeks over Sony. Ultimately, we will have to wait until later in the year when stock levels even out and the demand no longer outpaces supply before we can get a definitive conclusion on which console Aussies like better.
During the fiscal year of 2013, ASUS managed to sell more motherboards than its closest rival, GIGABYTE, but 2014 is shaping up for both companies to go head-to-head in a battle so see who can sell the most boards. In 2013, ASUS managed to sell more than 22 million motherboards, while GIGABYTE came in a very close second at just over 21 million units sold. Newly reported numbers show that GIGABYTE may have taken an early lead for 2014 though.
A new report from DigiTimes says that GIGABYTE is on track to sell more than 5 million motherboards in the first quarter of 2014 alone, with those figures being driven by a strong market in China. China is one of GIGABYTE's biggest markets for 2014, with more than 40-percent of its sales coming from the country. With the 2014 fiscal year just beginning, there is still a lot of time for ASUS to catch up, but with numbers like these being posted, and solid high-end boards being released by GIGABYTE, ASUS has its work cut out if it hopes to surpass the current leader.
If you have ever sat in a long line outside of a fast food restaurant and wished you could just place your order with your smartphone to speed the process up, then you might just be in luck. Taco Bell is reportedly beta testing a system that would let you place your order and even pay for it before ever even arriving at the store to pick it up.
According to the Los Angeles Times, Taco Bell is testing the mobile app at five of its locations in Orange County, California, and is preparing to ramp up the program to more markets and users over the course of the next several weeks. The report also says that based on the initial success of the program, the company could roll the system out to all of its locations in the US by the end of the year.
While other restaurants have online ordering similar to this, Taco Bell is tossing a interesting twist into the mix that involves GPS location tracking. After an order has been placed, the system will track the customer via the GPS sensor in their smartphone, and when the customer is within a few minutes of the Taco Bell location, it will alert employees to begin preparing the order. This allows customers to pick up their food much faster than traditional walk-in and drive-through methods, and will save both time and money for all parties involved.
Image sharing websites such as Flickr, Imgur, and Photobucket have all grown in popularity over the last year as camera's on mobile devices get better with every revision, but popular photo sharing service 500px has up until now, refused to allow mobile images to be uploaded to its servers. This ban on mobile images is mainly because the website takes pride in offering high-quality images, something many smartphones still lack.
That all changes today! This morning, 500px announced that it has updated its iOS app and now allows the uploading of images from iPhone and iPad devices. The company says that users should not worry about an influx of low-quality images, and instead should remember the way 500px thrives based on its community. The company says that the new upload feature only allows quick uploading of images taken from a stand-alone camera via an SD to iPhone and iPad adapter. This means that images taken with the iPhone and iPad can not be uploaded directly from the app, thus keeping low-quality images out of the system.
No word was given on when this feature may be released on Android, but with the recent influx of Dual USB Drives for PC and Mobile popping up, I am sure it wont take long before the Android version of the app gets updated. As an ex-professional photographer, and someone who still shoots professionally on the side, I feel this is a good choice for 500px. Opening the service up to allow images from mobile devices themselves would simply inundate the system with very few good photos, and would flood it mediocre to poor images.
Back in August last year, we reported that Microsoft hired ex-Valve employee Jason Holtman as the head of its PC division - a position that Holtman has just left, six months into it.
The Verge talked with a Microsoft spokesperson who confirmed the news, adding that the software giant wishes him the best in the future. According to Holtman's LinkedIn profile, he left last month, but the news has only just reached the Internet. Holtman has confirmed the news through his Facebook page, where he said: "Last week I left Microsoft and said goodbye to my friends there. Now looking around for something interesting and fun-no end of that in video games!"
Who will become Dropbox's first Chief Operations Officer? If a report from the Wall Street Journal is correct, it could be Motorola CEO, Dennis Woodside.
Woodside will reportedly leave his post as CEO at Motorola for the COO position of the cloud storage giant. Things aren't set in stone right now, but it would definitely be an interesting move for Woodside.
A few days after we posted this, a Dropbox representative reached out to us, where Drew Houston, CEO of the cloud storage company, said: "We've long admired Dennis's leadership at Google and Motorola where he ran multi-billion dollar businesses and built amazing organizations around the world. We're so happy to welcome Dennis to our team -- I can't imagine a better person to help us bring Dropbox to global scale".
NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden can't catch a break, where the former NSA contractor has asked Russian law enforcement for security. The reasoning behind this is there have reportedly been threats made by US officials over Snowden's life.
After threats to Snowden were made last week, Snowden's lawyer, Anatoly Kucherena, said: "We are concerned with the situation around Edward. We see the statements made by some US officials containing potential and implicit threats and openly calling for causing him bodily harm".
BuzzFeed posted an article, using words from a US intelligence officer who provided a full explanation of a possible Snowden capture, where he said: "We would end it very quickly... Just casually walking on the streets of Moscow, coming back from buying his groceries. Going back to his flat and he is casually poked by a passerby. He thinks nothing of it at the time starts to feel a little woozy and thinks it's a parasite from the local water. He goes home very innocently and next thing you know he dies in the shower".
Streaming music services such as Pandora could be putting a dent into digital album sales, with music listeners enjoying a cheaper and wider selection to music. Copyright groups, providers and consumers are still fighting through a complicated royalty battle that has left all sides disappointed through various periods.
Digital album sales finally passed CD and physical album sales in 2011, but digital music sales dropped in 2013, as Amazon, Apple and other companies will need to fight for consumer attention. It's not all bad news for music vendors, however, as 50 percent of streaming music subscribers also purchase at least one album's equivalent in digital downloads each month, according to research group Nielsen.
Online music is coming upon an interesting crossroads, with Beats Music jumping into the crowded streaming music market, while Deezer decided to shutter.
After weeks of teasing us, LG has finally unveiled its successor to the "best smartphone of MWC 2013", the LG G Pro 2. LG's G Pro 2 features a 5.9-inch 1920x1080 display, and an 'extra slim bezel' of just 3.3mm. This provides the G Pro 2 with an 'industry-leading' screen-to-frame ratio of 77.2%.
It also crams in a thicker, high-power 1W Hi-Fi sound that is 30% louder than its predecessor, with more powerful bass, too. The 13-megapixel rear-facing camera has been 'enhanced', which is now capable of shooting 4K video. The G Pro 2 features OIS+ (Optical Image Stabilizer Plus) and can shoot video at 120FPS, too.
Inside of the G Pro 2, we have Qualcomm's Snapdragon 800 SoC which is a 2.26GHz quad-core processor, 3GB of RAM, a 3200mAh removeable battery, LTE support, and either 16GB or 32GB of on-board storage. It will arrive in three colors: titan, white and red. LG hasn't yet decided on markets outside of Korea, but we should hear more about that at MWC in the coming weeks.
Our Tweakipedia section has a new post.
We re-run our Star Swarm benchmark on two new builds: an Intel Core i7 4930K system, and an AMD FX-8350 system. We run the tests at 1080p and 4K so we have a great foundation to build on mixing AMD/Intel CPUs, mid/high-end CPUs, and a very commonly used resolution versus 4K.
You can read more on the Tweakipedia article right here!