It's been another big week of news and happenings in the tech, gaming, and science space, and Jak and Kosta are back with a new episode of The TT Show - TweakTown's official podcast. This week, they go all-in on the massive Xbox leak that revealed console refresh plans, new games, new controllers, and a possible switch to ARM-based computing for the next Xbox console generation in 2028.
This week, Kosta sits down with the Head of Product over at XPG, Luca Fiore, to discuss to talk about the company's new Battlecruiser II chassis, what goes into the development of a case, industry trends, and why it's so important to engage and take on community feedback. And thanks to XPG, we've got a massive prize pack of gear to giveaway. Head here for more info!
Jak and Kosta also look at the state of mobile gaming when you can hook up the new iPhone to a TV to play Resident Evile with a PS5 controller. Plus, the GeForce RTX 4090 finally meets its match - and it's not Crysis or the latest Cyberpunk 2077 update. It's a display!
XPG's Battlecruiser II chassis is here and has been designed to enhance the DIY process with support for more hardware and a long list of improvements based on community feedback the company received after releasing the first BATTLECUIRSER.
The XPG BATTLECRUISER II Super Mid-Tower features four glass panels for an open look, removable and easy-to-clean magnetic dust filters, an adjustable GPU holder, and a Smart Cable Management system. And for those looking for full, in-depth RGB lighting, a version of the BATTLECRUISER II ships with the XPG PRIME BOX - a hardware and software solution for lighting and thermal control for PWM fans and RGB accessories.
The biggest change for system builders comes with the additional 65mm height, which allows for better spacing and the ability to house a 360mm radiator on top and a 420mm radiator in the front. And to celebrate the DIY aesthetic, the entire design of the BATTLECRUISER II has been revised for too-less assembly.
A full-cover monoblock for the Sony PlayStation 5 is not something that we'd thought we'd ever see, let alone one that you can buy and mod yourself. But that's exactly what you've got here, thanks to the water-cooling masters over at EK with the new EK-QuantumX CoolingStation Monoblock for PS5.
This full liquid cooling solution covers the length of the PS5's PCB, cooling "all the critical components on the front and back." A total transformation for the PlayStation 5, and with the EK-QuantumX CoolingStation Monoblock's ATX stand-offs, you can then put the water-cooled PS5 into an mATX case. This is another wild idea: cooling a console and making it look like a high-end custom gaming PC.
This means that the standard DC power connector of the PS5 is converted to dual 8-pin PCIe power connectors that will then connect to a PC power supply. So you'll need an ATX PSU and a pump and radiator.
Authorities in France raided NVIDIA offices in Paris last week as part of an anticompetitive investigation in the "graphics card sector." The unannounced seizure operation was carried out to gather information and potential evidence. France's Competition Authority disclosed very little about the situation other than that it was part of a broader investigation into the cloud computing sector.
Thanks to innovation foresight and investment in AI for several years, NVIDIA's GPU hardware, like the A100 and H100, are so far ahead of the competition that the company has secured over 80% of the market. This is a massive lead over rivals like Intel and AMD and one that also has the European Commission formally looking into potential unfair and monopolistic practices in the AI space.
With hardware sales going through the roof for the company and orders reportedly backed up through most of 2024 - the French raid and the EU's investigation are all about understanding NVIDIA's role, its pricing strategies, and more to determine if there's anything potentially shady going on.
WhatsApp is currently testing a new feature with iPhone owners that allows them to more easily create new stickers without having to do it manually. The new feature is also being tested with a limited number of Android beta testers, too.
The AI sticker feature was first reported by the WhatsApp watchers over at WABetaInfo and appears to allow people to create new, unique stickers using nothing more than a few words. It's available to some of those who are on the latest WhatsApp TestFlight beta, but it isn't yet known when we can expect the update to roll out to everyone who gets the app via the App Store.
WABetaInfo reports that users can click a new "Create" button that appears in the stickers section of the app. Once they do, they are presented with space to enter a description of the sticker that they want to create. Once done, the WhatsApp app creates the new sticker and it can then be used as required. The feature means that people no longer have to be able to manually create their stickers in order to get something that isn't already offered.
The Google Pixel Watch 2 is expected to be announced during an event on October 4, with Google also set to show off the Pixel 8 and Pixel 8 Pro officially for the first time. Expectations are high for the whole lineup, and now new leaks show just how much of the Fitbit DNA is starting to appear on the Pixel Watch 2.
The Pixel Watch 2 will be Google's second attempt at building a top-quality smartwatch and it didn't do a bad job with the first model that was released last year. However, this new model looks set to lean heavily on Fitbit by adding some key new features that will be familiar to Fitbit wearers.
As noted by 9to5Google, the most obvious is a new Body responses screen which is expected to use a new EDA sensor to help with stress tracking for the first time. We also see new images, shared by X leaker Evan Blass, which show a redesigned interface for heart rate monitoring with a "target zone." It isn't clearly mentioned what that feature will do, although talk of pace training might give us a hint.
With Apple releasing iOS 17.1 to developers earlier in the week we got our first look at a new Wallet feature that puts bank balances and transactions with into the app. The kicker was that the feature was only available in the UK thanks to its Open Banking API, but it now appears the same feature could be on the way to the United States as well.
The news comes after one software researcher noticed that the fine print of the setup process in the UK includes mention of Apple Payments Services Ltd (UK). But there was also a mention of the new Apple Processing LLC (US) as well, suggesting that the feature will appear on Apple's home turf as well.
Then, MacRumors took that information and found a reference to the same legal entity on Apple's website in relation to Connected Cards, the new feature that makes this Wallet magic happen. The document found on Apple's website again points to Apple Processing LLC being the entity through which the US banking system will funnel data into Wallet.
Apple has become the go-to destination for those looking to enjoy Major League Soccer thanks to its MLS Season Pass while Major League Baseball is also covered off via the Apple TV app. What's next? A new report suggests that we might see Apple turn its attention to motorsport.
That new report comes via the Business F1 magazine and was picked up by 9to5Mac. If a deal is done, it's thought that it could cost Apple around $2 billion per year to become the exclusive rights holder for streaming Formula 1 sport around the world.
However, the move would take time to come to fruition. It's noted that there are already F1 deals in place that would need to expire before Apple would be able to swoop in, including an ESPN deal that runs until 2025. The report claims that Apple would look to sign a seven-year deal, with the global rights becoming available around five years into that timeframe.
If you're a user of Apple CarPlay and either have a new iPhone 15 or have one on the way, you might want to start thinking about how you're going to plug it into your vehicle. Because it seems some people are finding that to be more problematic than you might think.
MacRumors reports that there are a surprisingly large number of people experiencing issues when connecting their USB-C iPhone to their car, most notably whenever they have a car that doesn't have a USB-C port. That means that they have to use a USB-A to USB-C cable and that, it appears, is where things start to go awry.
The MacRumors piece linked below includes a number of examples of people finding that they can't get USB-A to USB-C cables to work when they try to use Apple CarPlay. It would appear that the cable will charge the iPhone as expected, but the CarPlay connection isn't being initiated.
Xbox has had a capture problem for two console generations, and Microsoft's solution isn't a great fix.
Capturing screenshots and video on Xbox is fairly straightforward. You press the button, and the console will record what happened in video or picture form. Unfortunately for gamers, the Xbox Series consoles will automatically overwrite and/or delete captured content that is stored natively on the SSD if storage runs low. The console does not notify users that this is happening; screenshots and video will just disappear.
Users had some choices to help mitigate this. The most convenient solution was to just have the console upload screenshots and content to the Xbox network. These files were safe once they were uploaded. You could even fire up the Xbox Console Companion App and download any screenshots or videos that were stored on the Xbox network.
Fortnite makes billions of dollars a year and is one of the most popular video games ever made. So why is Epic Games firing hundreds of workers due to overspending? The answer lies in Epic's multi-faceted ambitions.
Epic Games is one of the most interesting companies in the video games industry. While Epic is the maker of Unreal Engine, one of the most widely-used multimedia graphics engines on the planet, this engine doesn't define Epic's ambitions. The reality is that Epic wears many hats. It's not just an engine-maker that licenses its tools out to a sizable portion of games, films, TV shows, and even cars; Epic is also a major disruptor for video game economics and pledges to shake up the status quo.
Epic appears to follow the whims of CEO Tim Sweeney, a legendary programmer who created the Unreal Engine. Sweeney is staunchly opposed to certain games industry trends, including the business practices of Valve, Google, and Apple, the last two of which constitute a "mobile duopoly" on gaming's most lucrative billion-dollar platform. Sweeney has been vocal and consistent in his opposition of these companies, and Epic's specific business decisions have followed Sweeney's beliefs.