Technology content trusted in North America and globally since 1999
7,704 Reviews & Articles | 57,132 News Posts

TweakTown News Posts - Page 69

Skyrim is awkward to play on PSVR

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Virtual & Augmented Reality | Posted: Aug 23, 2017 11:32 pm

Skyrim is supposed to be one of virtual reality's killer apps, but it's actually tedious and clumsy to play on Sony's PlayStation VR.



After launching on all platforms known to man (only slightly joking here), Skyrim is coming to PlayStation VR--and not just a small slice as per the usual PSVR release, the full open-world game. But the experience is hindered by one critical aspect: teleportation. Like most Vive VR games, users will have to teleport from point-to-point to traverse Skryim's in-game world while using Move controllers. According to IGN's Alanah Pearce, Skyrim on PSVR is awkward and tedious when using these motion-tracked wands, and there's more than a few glitches.


The wands are there, of course, to track your hand movements and translate to in-game interactions, from pulling a bowstring to slicing and dicing with a sword and blocking with a shield. The Move controllers aim to add the critical point of immersion to the virtual reality experience, but at the cost of smooth movement. According to Ms. Pearce, teleporting makes for strange-feeling traversal throughout open-world areas as well as congested dungeons, and doesn't feel very smooth or natural.

Continue reading 'Skyrim is awkward to play on PSVR' (full post)

HP posts earnings growth for fourth straight quarter

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Business, Financial & Legal | Posted: Aug 23, 2017 10:43 pm

Technology giant HP Inc has reported its fourth straight quarter of strong earnings growth driven by its Personal Systems segment.




HP's fiscal third quarter 2017 earnings mark the fourth consistent period the company has one-upped its total net revenues. The company earned $13.1 billion in net revenues in the three-month period ending July 31, 2017, up 10% year-over-year. HP's Personal Systems segment, which includes its lucrative commercial and consumer PCs as well as workstations, thin clients, and tablets, accounted for roughly 64% of fiscal Q3'17 net revenues, or $8.404 billion in net revenues and up 12% year-over-year. Commercial and Consumer segment net revenues increased by 11% and 14% respectively, and Notebook segment revenues were also up 12% with Desktop units down 3% year-over-year.


The tech titan's Printing segment earned $4.698 billion in net revenues in the period, up 6% year-over-year.


"Q3 was another outstanding quarter of successfully executing our reinvention strategy," said Dion Weisler, President and CEO, HP Inc.


"We stabilized supplies revenue a quarter earlier than expected, posted double-digit revenue growth, delivered non-GAAP earnings per share at the high-end of our previously provided outlook range and generated approximately $1.7 billion in free cash flow."

Continue reading 'HP posts earnings growth for fourth straight quarter' (full post)

Final Fantasy XV on PC to get mod support

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Gaming | Posted: Aug 23, 2017 9:24 pm

UPDATE: Square Enix has provided us with an official statement that specialization requirements for Final Fantasy XV's incoming Windows Edition on PC were published in error. "The recommended specs text that accompanied the Windows Edition trailer were posted in error and have since been removed," a Square Enix representative told us. "The specs listed were not final as the game is still in development. We will officially publish both minimum and recommended specs for the game once we finish development, so that they are fully accurate."


Final Fantasy XV Windows Edition should get mods at some point, opening up a massive wealth of pontential for PC gamers.



Just yesterday I wrote up an opinion piece that Final Fantasy XV is the new modern-day Skyrim. Now that game director Hajime Tabata says we should expect mod support for Final Fantasy XV's newly announced Windows Edition, that comparison is even stronger. Earlier this year Mr. Tabata said he'd love to include mod support in Final Fantasy XV's PC version, and at Gamescom 2017 he's sticking to his words.


"I think one of the biggest things [PC] players can expect is mod support," Final Fantasy XV Game Director told Rock Paper Shotgun's Brenden Caldwell at Gamescom 2017. "We definitely want to do it. We haven't actually managed to get our full modding policy or discussions on that finished but at the moment we do really want to do it. We'll have the full details around autumn time."


But will the mods be free? Games-makers and publishers typically monetize any new content, however Square Enix has infused tons of free content updates into Final Fantasy XV to continually evolve the game over time. Then again, Square Enix also offers a $30 season pass for content. Bethesda Softworks is taking a stab at optional paid mods that are more like mini DLC packs than actual mods with its new Creation Club initiative.


Will Square Enix make its own Creation Club, or will all user-created mods be free?


"I think a lot of people do want the mods as free as possible," Mr. Tabata said in the interview, "and with as few limitations from our side as possible, so we are going to look into making that the kind of system we have for the mods, so we'll have to figure out all the technical terms around that."

Continue reading 'Final Fantasy XV on PC to get mod support' (full post)

Elon Musk reveals SpaceX's official spacesuit

By: Lana Jelic | More News: Science, Space & Robotics | Posted: Aug 23, 2017 8:45 pm

Elon Musk has posted the first official photo of the SpaceX spacesuit on Instagram. Musk noted that the photo shows an actual working suit and not just a mockup.




According to Musk, the space suit was already tested to double vacuum pressure. The suit looks elegant, and Musk admitted that it was incredibly hard to balance aesthetics and function. However, you can see that the result is good.


SpaceX suits are meant to be worn by astronauts inside the company's Dragon capsule. The suits aren't meant for spacewalks but during the ride inside the capsule.

Continue reading 'Elon Musk reveals SpaceX's official spacesuit' (full post)

Anno 1800 is Blue Byte's new game

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Gaming | Posted: Aug 23, 2017 6:15 pm

Ubisoft's Blue Byte studio is making Anno 1880, an RTS that takes place in the Industrial Revolution.



Back in April we reported that Ubisoft's newly formed Berlin studio was making a new AAA PC strategy game, and erroneously thought it'd be a Might and Magic sequel. Now Ubisoft has announced the game is Anno 1800, a new release in the landmark Anno series.


Anno 1800 will take place during the heyday of the 19th Century, and "combines features from 20 years of Anno history" with a rich story-based campaign and a city-building experience alongside a customizable sandbox and the traditional multiplayer experience.

Continue reading 'Anno 1800 is Blue Byte's new game' (full post)

The most anticipated phone of the year is here - Note8

By: Lana Jelic | More News: Mobile Devices, Tablets & Phones | Posted: Aug 23, 2017 3:55 pm

Samsung has finally unveiled the most anticipated smartphone of the year - the Galaxy Note8. The expectations were high considering the last year's fiasco with the Note7. A year ago, there were even some rumors that the Korean giant might give up on the Note line, but the company worked hard and delivered another amazing device.




The Galaxy Note8 features a 6.3-inch Quad HD+ Super AMOLED Infinity Display with a minimal bezel design, similar to the one of the previously announced Galaxy S8 and S8+. The device runs Android 7.1.1 Nougat.


As expected, the Note8 is powered by Qualcomm's Snapdragon 835 and Exynos 8895, depending on the market. The phone comes with 6GB of RAM and 64GB, 128GB, or 256GB of internal storage, expandable with a microSD card.

Continue reading 'The most anticipated phone of the year is here - Note8' (full post)

Xbox owners can pre-download Xbox One X 4K textures

By: Derek Strickland | More News: Gaming | Posted: Aug 23, 2017 2:34 pm

Microsoft aims to make the transition to Xbox One X as easy and painless as possible.




The new $499 Xbox One X is capable of running specific Xbox One games in native 4K resolution, but in order to do so, gamers must first download the required 4K texture packs and updates. Seeing as these textures are quite huge and can wreak havoc on monthly data caps, Microsoft is allowing existing Xbox One owners to pre-download 4K texture updates so they don't spend the whole Xbox One X launch day downloading content. Not every game on the list of 100+ Xbox One X enhanced games will have 4K texture packs available for pre-download, however, and Microsoft hasn't stipulated an exact list.


The company has come up with three different strategies to make the Xbox One to Xbox One X upgrade transition as seamless as possible including: backing up existing Xbox One settings to an external storage device; pre-downloading 4K texture updates and enhancement patches for specific games; allowing users to transfer games and content from one console to the Xbox One X over a home network. Users who already have their games on an external hard drive can simply plug the HDD into the Xbox One X and access their games library. Of course if the Xbox One X is the first Xbox you own, you'll have to download all the updates like normal.


"We have over 100 games with Xbox One X enhancements. One of the things we want to do is, for some of those games, get you all those updates before Xbox One X launches so that when you get your console you plug it in and you're in those awesome amazing games," said Xbox and Windows Platform at Microsoft ‎Corporate Vice President Mike Ybarra.

Continue reading 'Xbox owners can pre-download Xbox One X 4K textures' (full post)

ARK cross-platform play on PS4 and PC BLOCKED by Sony

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Gaming | Posted: Aug 23, 2017 9:20 am

Sony is already dominating the console game against Microsoft, but cross-platform play of some of the biggest games on the market would be nice, right? WRONG.




Sony has blocked cross-platform play between PS4 and PC gamers in ARK: Survival Evolved, with ARK's Lead Desginer, Jeremy Stieglitz, saying on Twitter the team have it "working internally", but "Sony won't allow it". This means cross-platform play between PC and PS4 gamers in ARK works, but Sony are stopping it. The reason? Sony is worried about children... no, seriously.


PlayStation marketing boss Jim Ryan said: "Exposing what in many cases are children to external influences we have no ability to manage or look after, it's something we have to think about very carefully". If Sony were that worried about external influences on children, they'd disable webcams on their own TVs, make their security stronger on all platforms, block voice chat and swear words in game chats, and a billion other things. Come on, Sony.

Microsoft builds its own AI hardware: Project Brainwave

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Science, Space & Robotics | Posted: Aug 23, 2017 7:35 am

Microsoft has teased that it's working on AI technology, with the heart and soul of Redmond's artificial intelligence powered by Intel's new Stratix 10 field programmable gate array (FPGA) chip.




Microsoft calls its AI hardware platform "Project Brainwave", which is capable of a huge 39.5 teraflops of machine learning performance, with less than 1ms of latency. What makes Microsoft's ventures into AI better than their competitors? Well, the new chip handles complex AI tasks as they're received instead of batching the operations together and working on them after.


Thanks to Project Brainwave relying on a "soft" dynamic neural network processing engine using off-the-shelf FPGA-based processors, Microsoft's own AI framework (Cognitive Toolkit) also works with Google's own TensorFlor, and other systems. This means you can build a machine learning system, and run everything in real-time instead of being bottlenecked by hardware.


Microsoft wants to push out its new Skynet Project Brainwave systems into their Azure cloud services, so that companies can use super-powerful, live AI. We don't know what Microsoft will achieve from this in the short term, but you can bet your bottom dollar this will turn into something big in the next 5-10 years, and beyond.

HP Omen X gaming notebook: GTX 1080, 120Hz LCD, more

By: Anthony Garreffa | More News: Laptops | Posted: Aug 23, 2017 6:31 am

HP has just unveiled its new Omen X gaming laptop, which offers a decent upgrade path for those who want to make their gaming laptop a little faster, or add more storage over time.



HP's new Omen X won't let you upgrade the CPU or GPU, so there's nothing new there, but the RAM, HDD and SSD are all replaceable. HP says that you won't need to rip the Omen X open to replace out the components, but instead there's a back panel on the Omen X that needs a Philips head screwdriver, and that's all.


Inside, the new Omen X is a 15.6-inch 1080p 120Hz gaming laptop that rocks an Intel Core i7-7700HQ processor, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 graphics card, and 8GB of DDR4 RAM - all for $1200. If you want to spend a little more, you can ramp up to the Core i7-7820K, GTX 1080, 32GB RAM, and NVMe-based SSD storage.

Continue reading 'HP Omen X gaming notebook: GTX 1080, 120Hz LCD, more' (full post)