Posts Tagged ‘require’
Xbox One games will require internet ‘spot checks’, but Microsoft won’t charge to authenticate used games
Does the Xbox One actually require an internet connection? Will used game buyers or sellers have to pay an extra fee? Microsoft hasn’t made it clear, but a report at Polygon now claims that the answers are “yes” and “no” respectively. According to the publication’s sources, Xbox One games will phone home to Microsoft servers on a regular basis to verify that their users own the games. If you buy a used title, however, Polygon claims that you won’t have to pay Microsoft for a fresh license to the game.
Simply popping in the game disc and installing it will reportedly establish lawful ownership as far as Microsoft’s servers are concerned. When you install the game on your Xbox One, you’ll be deauthenticating it on the previous owner’s…
Well, this is quite a blow to standard cable television customers. Up till just recently, Comcast has actually allowed subscribers to gain access to certain networks without including a set-top box for every TELEVISION– instead, you ‘d merely link your TV directly via coax (how quaint!). Now, particular clients have actually received word that their complimentary ride will soon be concerning an end. The media titan will start encrypting standard cable television stations, requiring a single STB for each and every television that you plan to use. A Comcast Q&A file only takes care of house users, so it’s confusing whether enterprise customers would also be had an effect on– though that would not be out of the question.
The step could indicate a more complex (and expensive) setup at healthcare facilities, college dormitories as well as community gyms, where TVs installed in cardio devices typically plug directly into wall jacks, not to point out the inconvenience you’ll be dealing with in the house. This most current obstacle, naturally, follows an FCC choice to permit business to encrypt their basic cable stations– the permission was apparently given to cut back on service fraud, amongst various other concerns. Comcast will be providing approximately two adapters to each customer at no charge for up to two years, presuming you request your devices within four months of the date of file encryption. That’s the great news, but encrypted content is quite a drag, however.
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The war for your living room rages on, and Microsoft has no intention of yielding any hard-fought ground to its gaming rivals. Rumors of a new Xbox have been flying around for months now, but Kotaku has put together the mother of all next-gen Xbox (a.k.a. Xbox 720, a.k.a. Durango) posts thanks to a secretive-but-chatty source known as SuperDaE — if the moniker sounds familiar, he’s the guy who tried selling what he claimed was a Durango developer rig on eBay a while back.
First up, the hardware — Kotaku claims that the final, retail-ready Durango console will sport a eight-core processor clocked at 1.6GHz, 8GB of DDR3 RAM, and a “800mhz DirectX 11.x graphics processor unit.” Other reported components include a 500GB internal hard drive (mostly for installing games, which is now said to be required upon a game’s first launch), as well as a Blu-ray drive. That info matches up rather nicely with earlier reports about the Durango’s internals, so it’s becoming very clear that whatever Microsoft has up its sleeves should have no trouble pushing pixels over the months and years to come.
And for better or worse, there will be more Kinect in your future. Apparently, its days as a pricey peripheral of questionable value are over — an updated version is said to be included with every new Xbox going forward. To top it all off, it’s being reported that the new Xbox simply won’t function correctly unless the Kinect is connected and has been set up. The Kinect’s appearance at CES and Kotaku’s new report illustrate that Microsoft strongly believes in the promise of motion and gesture control that the Kinect brings to the table — even if some gamers just don’t see the value. Surely I can’t be the only one who has trouble calibrating a Kinect to work well in tiny rooms.
While the new Kinect has been updated considerably (it can apparently track more discrete points on more people’s bodies), that certainly doesn’t mean that the Xbox will suddenly go without a traditional controller. While Kotaku wasn’t able to figure out exactly what the thing will look like, the new model is expected to be “a natural evolution” of the design used for the 360′s controller, albeit with a new and largely unexplained way of connecting wirelessly to the console itself.
Nintendo handhelds are no complete strangers to new coats of paint– or Pokemon, for that matter– and now the firm is readying a Japan-exclusive Pikachu Yellow 3DS XL (formally the LL for locals). The brightly colored clamshell attributes a white interior and the electric rodent’s visage on its lid with his tail tracking onto the underside. Priced at & yen; 18,900 (roughly $ 238), the portable will just be offered at Pokemon Center stores throughout the Land of the Rising Sunshine on September 15th for those who pre-order between August 25 and its release. Gamers in North America could not have the ability to snap up the distinctively hued system, however this weekend’s launch of the 3DS XL in red and blue could possibly supply a small measure of consolation.
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According to FCC filings, Qualcomm is developing a chip that could resolve interoperability problems on the 700MHz spectrum band, but the issue isn’t fixed yet. The 700MHz block is currently used by AT&T, Verizon, and smaller US carriers, but they operate on different blocks, and regional carriers have complained about not being able to get hardware that operates on their bands or being unable to let their phones roam on larger networks. A new chip apparently being sped through development by Qualcomm, however, could solve these problems. In the filing, Qualcomm said its chip could be configured by manufacturers to work on a carrier’s normal band but roam on a different one. At the same time, it says there are “significant device…
We’re entering a world of mainstream 64-bit computing — whether we like it or not. Just weeks after Adobe started requiring 64-bit Macs for CS6, DICE’s Rendering Architect Johan Andersson has warned that some of his company’s 2013 games using the Frostbite engine will need the extra bits as a matter of course. In other words, it won’t matter if you have a quad Core i7 gaming PC of death should the software be inadequate; if you’re still running a 32-bit copy of Windows 7 come the new year, you won’t be playing. The developer points to memory as the main culprit, as going 64-bit guarantees full access to 4GB or more of RAM as well as better virtual addressing. Andersson sees it as a prime opportunity to upgrade to Windows 8, although 64-bit Vista and 7 (and presumably OS X, if and when Mac versions exist) will be dandy. Just be prepared to upgrade that Windows XP PC a lot sooner than Microsoft’s 2014 support cutoff if you’re planning to run the next Battlefield or Mirror’s Edge.
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Microsoft looks forward: will require Windows Phone 7.5 to purchase apps, jettisons Zune desktop app purchasing
Microsoft is making a couple of changes to the Marketplace for Windows Phone apps that theoretically won’t have a major impact on most users, but are still worth noting. First, starting today, the Zune Desktop software will no longer be a place to browse and purchase apps; it will all be done either on the phone or in the web browser. Although the Zune software will still be used to apply OS updates, it’s fairly obvious that Microsoft wants to keep Zune more focused on music playing than on being a desktop portal to your Windows Phone experience. Microsoft also notes that the vast majority of users are doing their app shopping on the phone or via the web.
Microsoft will also soon be requiring that Windows Phone devices run the latest…
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Walking around CES this week it’s easy to see the future: just look at the components being sold in the nether regions of the show. These include specific things – Bluetooth powered electrical cords, for example – and “pieces” like smaller motherboards, cases, and materials. When planning a launch line-up, major manufacturers peruse catalogs of potential hardware and materials solutions to decide what to create next, then task their hardware designers to choose the proper parts in order to build in the features that meet their initial requirement. Does this TV need a 64-inch LED backlit screen? Four HDMI ports? A blue bezel? Designers figure out which parts fit where and place their assembly order with a factory. It’s been like this for decades.
When I write that Samsung could be the next Apple, I meant that Samsung seems to have finally bucked this trend, at least in part. The problem with the above shop-design-build process is that there is little synergy among various business units. The mobile guys have a certain menu from which to pick while the TV guys have a different menu. The phone OS has always been different than the TV “OS” (really UI, but TVs need a little code in them). Work may be duplicated multiple times, even from year to year.
Trade dress (the case and “looks” of a device) aside, most hardware is the same. A TV is a TV is a TV just as a phone is a phone is a phone. Sure there are special audio and video design issues and special tweaks manufacturers do to maintain their own levels of quality, but, to paraphrase my uncle, it all comes out of the same pipe.
So the real differentiator, the real money maker, is ecosystem and consumer lock-in.
For years, we gadget bloggers have had a common refrain: lock a bunch of developers in a room and make them build a great product. Ignore everything that came before and everything that will come after. Make something that works great, looks great, and matches consumer expectations and surpasses them.
The problem is that this model does now allow for the standard lock-step design process. It’s a complete anathema to the standard iteration model of product design and, as such, is very expensive and resource intensive.
But a few things are happening that are changing this. First, hardware is becoming easier to build. Kickstarter, for example, shows us that one-off manufacturing isn’t as hard as it sounds while companies like Apple have shown that ecosystem matters more than iterative improvements. If it all works together, you’ll see more hardware.
Manufacturers have known this for a long time yet they never truly wanted to pay the cash required to pull off a real ecosystem. It was always easier just to say “Me too” instead of “Me first.”
What seems to be happening – and discussions I’ve had bear this out – is that R&D investment is up and the ecosystem requirement is finally important. A million developers in front of a million keyboards will eventually build something that works correctly. Samsung, with their coffers of Galaxy Cash, are in the right place to attempt this and I think they pulled it off (we shall, however, have to see).
In the end these developers may be forced to go back to the iteration model. But once you have an ecosystem, it’s not hard to keep it going. It’s hard to improve it (witness the overwhelming “Meh” of iCloud) but it’s easy to keep it going once it’s in place.
It seems that 2012 is finally the year that hardware manufacturers understand lock-in. As we approach an era of connected devices, the benefits will be clear: easier content sharing, better device interaction, and improved remote control. What we lose, however, is the single-purpose computing device and, to be honest, I’m fine with that.
The good news for everyone anyone using their Xbox 360 as a AT&T U-verse set-top box, is that it will be upgraded as a part of the new dashboard update coming this fall. that means support for the integrated search, new UI and control via voice or gestures with Kinect. The bad news? After the update, it will only work if you’re also a subscriber to Xbox Live Gold. No problem if you were already shelling out in order to get your Gears 3 co-op on, but not so awesome if you weren’t planning on buying the gaming package just to watch some TV. Giant Bomb has talked to Microsoft and of the new services, some, like the BBC, may be accessible without a paid-up Gold pass, but for HBO Go, Dailymotion and others you’ll need to toss some cash Redmond’s way. To ease the pain, AT&T is tossing a one-time $ 60 credit towards its users with the package — still no word on whether or not you’ll need to pay that installation fee for a new setup after the upgrade goes through.
Here’s some exciting news for all you data storage enthusiasts and academics out there: researchers in France have found a way to double the storage capacity of magnetic disk drives by constructing “3D towers” of information. The team from SPINTEC created these pillars out of bit-patterned media — separated magnetic nanodots, each of which carries one bit of data. By layering the dots in specific formations, the team created a “multilevel magnetic recording device” with an areal density of two bits per dot — twice what it started with. According to researcher Jerome Moritz, these findings could provide IT companies with a new way to circumvent physical limitations to their data storage capacities, allowing them to build up and over the vaunted one Tbit per square inch barrier. The team’s full findings were recently published in the American Institute of Physics’ Journal of Applied Physics. You can read the full article at the source link or, if you’re afraid of paywalls, just check out the PR below.
Continue reading ’3D Towers’ double disk storage capacity, don’t require glasses
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