After all of the leaks, announcements and live streams that took place this week, it’s hard to imagine that the video game studios have anything left for E3 2016.
I kid, of course, because starting this Sunday, gamers around the world are going to sit down in front of their TVs and computers in order to watch press conferences from Sony, Microsoft, Nintendo, Ubisoft, EA, Bethesda and more.
What’s the next big thing? This is a question that has persistently hovered over the tech industry for years. With smartphones arguably on the cusp of becoming commodities, it’s only natural for us to wonder what the next technological leap is going to be. And while it may be too soon to make a bold proclamation in any particular direction, there’s a lot of evidence suggesting that self-driving cars will represent the next tectonic shift in how we live our lives.
These days, some of the biggest and well regarded tech and car companies on the planet — a list that includes Tesla, Google, Uber and Apple — are working feverishly to develop fully autonomous driving technology. And now comes word that the list is about to get even bigger.
Virtual reality is finally getting to a point where both hardware and software innovations can offer us a spectacular experience. It’s not a Star Trek Holodeck levels just yet, but Oculus, HTC, Sony, Microsoft, and many others have come up with compelling VR headsets and platforms. You can already buy the Oculus Rift or HTC Vive, and Microsoft has a fantastic HoloLens platform able to combine virtual (VR) and augmented reality (AR).
The software giant just announced its brilliant plan to conquer the world of VR through a platform that already has tremendous potential. More →
Just days before E3 2016, Microsoft has dropped the price of the Xbox One down to $299. Although the console has dipped down to that price range in the past, it was always for special events and promotions. This discount is also listed as lasting “for a limited time,” but the timing is very interesting.
It was clear at launch all the way back in 2010 that Microsoft’s revamped mobile platform wasn’t perfect, but it showed so much promise. The company’s interface was fresh and modern, offering real utility that rival platforms didn’t provide. But that differentiation would ultimately lead to Windows Phone’s demise — Android and iOS were in the process of taking over the world, and there was simply no reason for developers or users to embrace another platform.
Now, Windows Phone is all but dead, and not even Microsoft’s sleek new Surface phone will be able to save it. More →
With less than a month to go until E3 2016, the rumor mill has begun to kick into high gear. On Wednesday, Kotaku published a report claiming that Microsoft will release a cheaper, smaller Xbox One before the end of the year while an upgraded Xbox One console with upgraded specs will launch in 2017. More →
For months now, Microsoft has done everything in its power to shove Windows 10 down your throat. The free update is mandatory at this point, and we’ve heard from many Windows users who discovered their computers updated to the newest version automatically, without their knowledge or explicit permission. Microsoft kept offering excuses for these annoying occurrences, and even said it will stop pushing upgrades to Windows users refuse to hope aboard the Windows 10 train.
Now, the company has come up with its most evil trick yet to get you to update your PC to Windows 10, and it’s based on the same methodology hackers use to trick people into installing malware.
For many Microsoft employees, this is just another Wednesday morning like any other. But for close to 2,000 people it’s going to be a day to remember. The company announced that it’s “streamlining” its smartphone business by laying off about 1,850 people worldwide, including 1,350 people in Finland and 500 elsewhere. The move will see Microsoft take a $950 million financial hit, and it marks the death of the Nokia-born Lumia phone brand. More →
Exciting news, PC gamers: 343 Industries is bringing the Forge editing tool from Halo 5: Guardians to Windows 10. This is big news not just because Forge is a great tool — it’s what it hints at for Halo 5 and PCs.
If you’re unfamiliar with the Forge, it’s a tool that allows players to create new maps and unique game types for Halo, originally introduced in Halo 3. It came to Halo 5 in the form of an update late last year, and now the developer is porting it to PC as a standalone experience, completely free to download.
It took eons, but Nokia is finally making the Android phones we always hoped it would make. To get here, Nokia had to lose its grip on the mobile business, choose Windows Mobile as its only smartphone OS, and then sell its entire mobile division to Microsoft. But the American software giant was unable to make anything good come out of its Nokia Lumia and Windows Phone brands, turning the acquisition into a failure of epic proportions.
Meanwhile, Microsoft is selling its feature phone business to Foxconn. And Nokia is licensing its name, which it’s buying back from Microsoft, to a company that will work with the same Foxconn subsidiary to make feature phones, Android smartphones and Android tablets in the near future.
The point is, Nokia is finally making Android phones, even if it won’t actually build them More →
Microsoft is keen for you to upgrade to Windows 10. So keen, in fact, that it will give it away for free. And hey, Microsoft reckons you shouldn’t even have to go to the trouble of scheduling an update yourself — it can do that for you.
What’s that? You like Windows 7 better? Well, don’t leave your PC unattended for too long.
Microsoft has done a tremendous job with Windows 10 in so many ways, which is even more impressive when you consider that the company’s prior release was nothing short of a disaster. Microsoft knew it had fallen behind in mobile, so it tried to make Windows 8 as tablet-friendly as it could. What the company seemingly forgot, however, was that most people use Windows on a laptop or desktop, and a tablet interface in those environments provides a horrible user experience.
Windows 10 succeeded in erasing Windows 8 from users’ minds almost entirely, and the public conversation surrounding Microsoft’s latest release has been overwhelmingly positive (aside from when the world learned that Windows 10 was spying on users, that is). Nothing is perfect, and now a new change Microsoft is about to make will undoubtedly upset many Windows 10 users. More →