#206 SETI@home Comes To An End

After 21 years, the SETI@home project is coming to an end. I actually tested this project out myself at least a decade ago and thought it was pretty neat. While this project may be ending, if you are looking there are other replacement projects that might pique your interest.

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#17 Valve Changes Everything

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Parents worry about their teens’ smartphone habits. But what about their own?

Take the dinner table, the cliched scene where a parent tries to have a conversation with their cell phone-wielding teen, headphones in and distracted. Seventy-two percent of parents feel their teens are often or sometimes distracted by their phones while trying to have a conversation. But when Pew asked teens the same question about their parents, 51 percent of them said they believe their parents are either often or sometimes distracted by their phones during real-life conversations.

Analyst says Apple’s App Store could take $16B hit as commissions under fire

Some game developers feel that the commission levels charged by both Apple and Google are unfair, and they may take a strong stand. Epic Games already opted out of the Google Play app store when it launched Fortnite on Android, though it does sell the iOS version through Apple’s App Store.

Valve Changes Everything: Windows-Exclusive Games Now Run On Steam For Linux

Windows games with no Linux version currently available can now be installed and run directly from the Linux Steam client, complete with native Steamworks and OpenVR support.

Yup, we know exactly when Apple’s 2018 iPhones will be released

Despite the fact that Apple’s iPhone lineup will be completely different in 2018 than it has been in previous years, the events that have taken place in the lead up to their unveiling is exactly the same. First, a few rumors start to trickle out, then the world’s top Apple insider weighs in and tells us exactly what to expect, then as months go by the picture he painted gets more and more clear as subsequent leaks back up all of his claims.

Zynga to Develop ‘Star Wars’ Mobile Game

The developer has struck a multiyear deal with Disney to develop a mobile game based in the Star Wars universe. New Star Wars titles will be managed by the San Francisco company’s NaturalMotion studio, which is based out of the U.K.

No New Assassin’s Creed Coming In 2019

Reflecting on the decision to stop Assassin’s Creed’s yearly launch schedule and give Ubisoft’s developers the time to reinvent the series for Assassin’s Creed Origins, Guillemot said it was ultimately worth it.

“[The time] gave the team the possibility to really bring what they wanted to. The community has been responding very well to it and when I see what we are bringing with Odyssey I know that the community that got back in with Origins will be amazed.”

Overwatch’s D.Va Gets Her Own Animated Short, Watch It Here

Blizzard has released a new animated short for Overwatch called “Shooting Star” and this time the focus is much-loved Meka pilot D.Va. With Gamescom 2018 going on in Germany, the short was shown at Korea Fanfest, where Blizzard also debuted a brand-new Overwatch map. The video starts with a news report about D.Va, who has become a national hero by defending her nation from the Omnics.

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Apple Bans Cryptocurrency Mining on iPhone and iPad

Apple has introduced new section in the App Store Review Guidelines against cryptocurrency mining.

It does seem like 2018 is not a good year for cryptocurrencies in general. After Facebook, Google and Twitter shuns crypto ads, Apple has followed suit – sort of.

The Cupertino-based company just introduced a new section on cryptocurrency on its Apple Store Review Guidelines. The section – 3.1.5(b) – details guidelines that are to be applied to iOS, macOS, watchOS, and tvOS app. So basically everything that’s Apple.

These new policies come at a time where scams related to cryptocurrency has become very widespread.

“Apps, including any third party advertisements displayed within them, may not run unrelated background processes such as cryptocurrency mining,” the guideline states.

“In addition, apps may not mine directly for cryptocurrencies, unless the mining is performed in the Cloud or otherwise off-device,” it stated.

Apps are allowed to facilitate virtual currency storage as long as they are offered by developers enrolled as an organisation. They are also allowed to facilitate “transactions or transmissions of cryptocurrency on an approved exchange”. However, these services must be offered by the exchange itself.

The new section also touched on Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs). According to the guideline, ICOs must come from “established banks, securities firms, futures commission merchants (‘FCM’), or other approved financial institutions”.

Lastly, crypto-related apps are not allowed to offer currency for completing tasks. This includes tasks like downloading other apps or posting to social networks.

 

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Apple Has Been Blocking Updates of Telegram Even Outside Russia

That is, according to Telegram’s Chief Executive and Founder Pavel Durov.

(Image Credit: CCN)

Pavel Durov, Telegram’s CEO and founder took to Twitter and Telegram (of course) to voice his complaints against Apple. According to him, the latter has prevented the app from updating globally ever since Russia banned the service.

He explains:

“Russia banned Telegram on its territory in April because we refused to provide decryption keys for all our users’ communications to Russia’s security agencies.”

“Unfortunately, Apple didn’t side with us… Apple is restricting updates for all Telegram users around the world since mid-April.”

He also adds that without the updates, the app will not be able to work properly with the latest iOS. Additionally, the company was unable to fully comply with the new European data privacy law because of this.

General counsel of non-profit digital rights group Access Now Peter Micek shares his views: “App updates are essential to bolster the security of users and their data, and to comply with privacy laws and regulation.”

“The burden falls squarely on Apple to justify blocking global updates to Telegram, a hugely popular messaging app,” he adds.

 

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Valve’s Steam Link Launches In Beta On Android

Avid players who have Steam accounts could now play their collection of Steam titles using their smartphone. If you are a player, you could now download Steam Link beta via Google Play. This is possible after Valve announced earlier this month that its streaming game service would be available both for iOS and Android.

 

Steam Link is now on Android

 

 

To use Steam Link, what you need is a a 5GHz Wi-Fi router. Based on Valve’s recommendation, you need to connect your computer to a router through an ethernet cable. After this, you need to connect your Android-powered phone using the 5GHz channel of your Wi-Fi network.

Apart from this, you also need to sit close to the router, according to Valve, so that you can maximize the 5GHz networks. By doing so, this means you can use a much higher frequencies, as opposed to the standard 2.4GHz networks.

 

Regarding the controller options, you can actually use any type of Bluetooth controller that’s compatible with Android or the Steam Controller. Aside from mobile devices, the Steam Link is also available on Android TV. With this, Valve is recommending that you connect your compatible device over the Ethernet as well.

 

Valve added that the app should also support 4K at 60fps. However, the company stressed that the quality bar is full-HD (1080p) at 60fps for most environments, and this depends on PC, router and mobile hardware, and how your network is set up.

 

The company also revealed its plan to rollout Steam Link on Apple’s App Store. Valve said that the such rollout is still pending as Apple is currently reviewing the process for approval.

 

Launched in 2015, Steam Link is actually a standalone device designed to bring Steam titles from PC to the living room.

Fortnite Is Earning $25 million On Mobile, says Sensor Tower

Sensor Tower, a market analyst, based in the US, reported that Epic Game’s Fortnite: Battle Royale mobile is earning millions. The popular game has reportedly earned $25 million, an income earned in its first month.

 

Fortnite is raking millions on mobile

 

The research company said that Epic Games’ income was only from iOS devices. They projected that such income could reach over $500 million for this year. The game has just recently launched on Android.

 

Obviously, the game is consistently gaining popularity among players. Aside from popularity, the game was continuously attracting the pockets of players too. Fortnite had launched its Battle Royale game mid-March of this year. The company’s revenue has tripled since Fortnite opened the game publicly to players.

 

 

Although Fortnite: Battle Royale is free to play, it earned income through in-app purchases. Fortnite players could buy cosmetic items for the game’s new characters, emotes, and skins. Also, you can also buy Battle Passes for you to level up faster and collect more items.

 

Apart from mobile, the developer’s battle royale game is performing well on various consoles. In fact, under the free-to-play game category, Epic’s battle royale game reached 359 percent year-over-year growth back in February.

 

Fortnite’s battle royale beat out other rival games like PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds, according to market analyst Newzoo.

 

Meanwhile, Sensor Tower also learned that in the first half of April, Fortnite’s battle royale game was the second highest-earning app on the Apple App Store. What’s good with the game is its cross-platform play features.

 

 

This means that if a player bought an item, it would be available on PS4, iOS, PC and Xbox One. The game’s matchmaking is also great because players can play across platforms too.

Apple Music Now Has 38 Million Subscribers

Apple’s online music streaming service, Apple Music has now some 38 million subscribers, Apple SVP of Internet Software and Services Eddy Cue announced on Tuesday.

 

Cue disclosed such detail in an onstage interview at the South during the Southwest festival. Apple Music’s recent figures, he said, is a product of the Apple’s determination to gain more subscribers.

Apple Music gained 2 million subscribers in just last month

 

In just a few months, Apple Music has gained exactly two million subscribers. Furthermore, an additional 8 million of the company’s music streaming subscribers are now on a trial basis, according to Cue.

 

Cue further added that if the company would combine both Apple Music and Spotify’s subscriber bases, it equates to at least 100 million subscribers.

 

“The real opportunity for music – and it’s not about Spotify or us or the labels, it’s about artists – is how do they get their music to everyone around the world and how do they get compensated for that,” Cue said.

 

“We both have to grow by significant amounts to get to the numbers which it should,” he added.

With the given 100 million subscriber base, the Apple high ranking official pointed out that there’s still room for development. During his speech, Cue gave an estimate of about 2 billion that would soon subscribe to Apple Music or Spotify, the company’s rival.

 

To solidify its position, Cue further explained that more than half a billion customers were able to access the App Store every week. All, he said, would likely to subscribe the company’s online music streaming service.

 

Meanwhile, Apple Music’s rival, Spotify is planning to go public after it disclosed that it has 71 million paying subscribers. Back in 2017, Spotify has recorded 159 million monthly active users. These Spotify users were actively streaming 40.3 billion hours of content, based on the recent U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission filings.

Apple Said to Have Plan to Combine iPhone, iPad, Mac Apps

Apple Said That They Have a New Plan

Are you tired of having one gadget and can’t use other apps because they’re exclusive for other devices? If yes, then what Apple said might save the day for you.

Apple’s iPhone and iPad introduced a novel way of interacting with computers: via easy-to-use applications, accessible in the highly curated App Store.

But it didn’t work the same way with Apple’s iMac. The Mac App Store is missing some applications which are considered important to users. So where will they get the apps that they need, right?

Now Apple plans to change that by giving people a way to use a single set of apps that work equally well across its family of devices: iPhones, iPads and Macs.

Software developers were said to be able to design a single application early next year. This application works with a touchscreen or a mouse and trackpad, whichever device you use.

Developers currently must design two different apps – one for iOS, the operating system of iPhones, and one for macOS, for laptops.

One downside is that the Mac is not updated regularly unlike the iOS system. This is why some users complain. But with a single app for all machines, Mac, iPad and iPhone users will get new features and updates at the same time.

 

 

Apple ARKit: Pokémon Go for iOS Adding Advanced ‘AR+’ Capture Mechanics

Avid players of Pokémon Go will soon be getting a game enhancement via an update. Both Niantic and The Pokémon Company announced earlier this week that Apple iOS users would have the support for Apple ARKit.

This means that iOS players of Pokémon Go will expect a major enhancement of the game’s augmented reality. Called as the “AR+” feature, the company said that the update is expected to be available with players using iOS 11 with iPhone 6s and latest Apple iterations.

What is ARKit?

With the announcement of the game’s update, many are still clueless of what is ARKit? The ARKit was announced earlier this year by the Cupertino-based company at WWDC.

The ARKit is seen to improve the Pokémon Go’s augmented reality technology. This includes, among others, the ability of the game to fix a specific point in space.

“This is our first step toward making AR capabilities in Pokémon GO even more awesome, opening up the framework for greater AR experiences in the future,” the company said as quoted saying in a report.

Apple said this scaling feature would allow Pokémon Go players to walk up close and move around freely in the space. Aside from this, the update also brings the capability of players to capture any type of creatures in the game.

This works only if a trainer was eventually working close to a creature. However, if a certain trainer could eventually sneak up, then he or she can actually earn an Expert Handler bonus upon capturing the creature.

Meanwhile, citing the same report, Apple’s senior vice president of Software Engineering Craig Federighi shared also about the game’s enhancement, saying “The Pokémon is so real, he’s right there on the ground. As the ball bounces, it actually bounces right there in the real environment. It’s AR like you’ve never seen it before.”

Players can download the game for free via Apple’s iOS App Store.

‘Rainbrow’ is an iPhone X Game You Play Using Your Eyebrows

Apple’s latest flagship iPhone X is undeniably the most popular phone today. iPhone X has gained popularity from mobile users because of its unique design and improved security features. Now this feature is being used by Rainbrow app for entertainment purposes.

The Cupertino-based mobile phone brags about its face-recognition feature. Such feature, however, drew mixed reactions from the public.

And because of iPhone X’s face-recognition feature, many game developers are taking advantage of the technology embedded in the Apple’s smartphone. In fact, a game developer has reportedly developed a game that uses the iPhone X’s face recognition feature.

This sounds interesting but using such the phone’s face-recognition using your eyebrow to play a game is both cool and fantastic. The game developer named the app as “Rainbow” which uses the iPhone X’s latest and power technology.

Meet Rainbrow app

According to a report, the Rainbow app is using the phone’s True Depth sensor and its ARKit or the augmented reality platform. The Rainbow app is often compared to Frogger where in a gamer has to dodge other emoji throughout the game’s journey while playing the game.

In Rainbrow app, a player has to move a smiley face across a rainbow. Hence the name of the app.

So how does the game being controlled?

If you happen to play the game, obviously, a gamer’s face is the one controlling the game. To navigate the game’s virtual world, a gamer must raise his or her eyebrows up to move forward. To move down, a gamer must frown his or her face. Meanwhile, if the gamer opts to be expressionless, it will keep them in the stationary position.

Rainbrow app is developed by Nathan Gitter. Apple users can download the game via Apple App Store for iOS devices.