Wait… MySpace is still around? Yup, and to make matters worse, this news is over a year old but only just now hitting the mainstream. Reports are suggesting that songs, photos, videos and more from the first 12 years of MySpace existence are corrupted beyond repair and lost to the void.
If you’re a social media holdout, you are an increasingly rare breed. D.C.-based business news and how-to website The Manifest says 86 percent of Americans now use social media every day. Women are more likely than men to check in repeatedly throughout the day. Facebook remains the most-used social media channel, but The Manifest says use of other social platforms is growing faster, particularly YouTube and Instagram. Nearly two-thirds of social media consumers report they are using YouTube and Instagram more this year than they were last year, compared to 52 percent of Facebook users who said so.
In a move that appears to take a page from Amazon’s Prime playbook and one-up it by removing price as an entry barrier, Apple reportedly plans to offer completely free of charge at least some of the content it’s developing for its long-awaited streaming service — so long, that is, as you’re a part of Apple’s device ecosystem. Citing unnamed inside sources, CNBC reports that Apple plans to feature its launch-day streaming content at no cost for Apple device owners, who would access the platform via a dedicated app icon in much the same fashion as they currently access iTunes or the App Store.
Facebook made a splashy entrance into VR when it purchased fledgling startup Oculus back in 2014 for $2.3 billion. However, even after putting out the first consumer-ready Oculus Rift in 2016, which was followed up by this year’s Oculus Go and the upcoming Oculus Quest, today’s departure of Oculus co-f0under and former CEO Brendan Iribe casts doubts on the future of Facebook’s VR efforts.
It’s not easy to turn heads in the mobile industry in 2018. At best, we see new handsets come out to critical acclaim but also a sense of stifled boredom. Maybe it is the best of its kind yet, but so what? Apart from the fact that it ticks every box, what does it bring to the table that’s new? Fortunately, for those of us seeking something different (if a bit quirky), Razer has decided to get into the mobile market. The gaming hardware company is now on its second generation smartphone, the Razer Phone 2, and it’s staying true to its original vision: a handset for elite mobile gamers. This puts the device in an interesting position. It’s vying to be a luxury product — so it should not only compete with the best but somehow achieve more. That’s where the 120Hz refresh rate display comes in, and the RGB light-up logo.
Ghostbusters World is a mobile game from Ghost Corps — the Sony company that “owns” Ghostbusters — and South Korean game developer [4:33]. The developer is no stranger to big-name franchise games, and released DC Unchained earlier this year. Here, however, the company has sought to bolt the franchise onto something more successful: Pokémon Go. It won’t take players long to spot the number of similarities between Ghostbusters World and Pokémon Go, surely the apex predator of GPS-based mobile AR games. In Go, users wander around their locale catching monsters Pokéballs. In World, players wander around catching ghosts with their Proton Packs and Ghost Traps. Both games can be played in either a simulated environment or using your phone’s camera for augmented reality, too.
Nintendo’s surprisingly wide range of merchandise options often has us drooling over the latest and greatest thing, and this is usually amplified when we see the sorts of goodies available in Japan. Joining that list in style are these lovely Piranha Plant slippers and we can’t wait to get multiple sets for ourselves.
Spotify has teamed with Ancestry.com to offer users playlists based on their own DNA. By signing up through the genealogy company, you can trace your family history and input results to Spotify. It’ll then generate a playlist based on your family tree and listening habits. The program will “encourage [Ancestry’s] audience to explore the soundtrack of their heritage,” Danielle Lee, global head of partner solutions at Spotify, told Quartz.
Last Friday, Telltale Games, the developer behind IP-driven, point-and-click titles like The Walking Dead series, Game of Thrones and Guardians of the Galaxy, laid off most of its staff with the intention of eventually shutting down the company. For both fans and employees, surprised by the move, it was a crushing turn of events.
If you have a new Apple Watch Series 4, or have upgraded your existing Apple Watch to watchOS 5, you’ve probably noticed you have a new app on your device called Walkie-Talkie. This particular app uses the FaceTime Audio APIs, so you can instantaneously voice communicate with someone else that has Walkie-Talkie, much like the way Sprint Push To Talk/Direct Connect (PTT) works with those phones that support it.
Pokemon Go’s latest Community Day took place this past weekend, and by all accounts, it was a fairly standard event. However, something rather unusual happened right after the Community Day ended: a strange, never-before-seen Pokemon briefly appeared in the wild.
If Apple keeps the same pattern, it’s likely to introduce new Apple Watch models soon, possibly as soon as the second week in September. Plus, this year it’s possible that Apple introduces the first new Apple Watch industrial design since the product line was revealed in 2014, which would make it the biggest upgrade in over three years.
Samsung has announced a pair of gaming monitors at Gamescom 2018, positioning them as “affordable” in the company’s own words. The CJG5 series comes in 27- and 32-inch varieties, both using curved 2560 x 1440 VA panels with a refresh rate of 144Hz. The monitors have two HDMI ports (one 2.0, one 1.4) and a DisplayPort input.
Looks like in a not-so-subtle move, Netflix is wanting to recover the 30% of subscription fees currently being forked over to iTunes and Google Play stores by having users register on their own mobile site. Sounds familiar…
Amazon announced today that it will release The Grand Tour Game on both Xbox One and PlayStation 4. The game will closely mimic the show, offering players the chance to relive some of the cars, locations and challenges featured on the first three seasons of Amazon’s streaming series. In addition to single-player action, there will also be a four-player, split-screen multiplayer option, as well. Every time a new Grand Tour episode drops during its third season, you’ll get access to new cars, tracks and challenges from that episode.
Playing games might not be the only thing you’ll be doing in your Nintendo Switch soon.
This secret but not-so-secret news came as a surprise since there was no mention of it at the E3. But it seems like the Nintendo Switch may soon have support for Netflix and Youtube.
While the Switch comes with WiFi capabilities and a web browser, it doesn’t support streaming applications. Hulu is the only streamer available in the console and has been since last year. However, this is only available for users in the US and Japan.
But that might soon change. Spotted by Reddit user DevCakes, new Switch listings for Netflix, YouTube and Hulu, have appeared on Best Buy’s website. The information has since been removed but not before a screenshot was done.
Under the heading “Smart Enabled”, BestBuy promises access to “a world of instant entertainment” with Nintendo Switch.
“Just connect to the Internet and stream movies, listen to music, and access a wide variety of other content.”
Below the description were the three logos of Netflix, Hulu and Youtube as examples.
BestBuy has since responded to the leak saying that it was an error. Do you believe them?
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Netflix has added a slew of 30-second video trailers to its app, a feature very similar to Stories.
After limited testing of the feature last month, Netflix finally added the 30-second video trailers to its app yesterday. Currently, it is available for iOS users and will be coming to Android soon.
The company announced the feature through their blog. “Mobile previews present members with a fun, simple, and easy way to learn about all the new content on Netflix — and find something great to watch even faster.”
The previews look very similar to Instagram and Snapchat Stories, being optimised for a mobile screen and having circular thumbnails. The trailers also play like a slideshow, allowing users to tap or swipe to skip to the next video. A button can be clicked to add a show to a Watch Later list.
Netflix has been offering previews of their shows on the web and through its TV app since last year. However, according to their data, a fifth of all viewing occurs on mobile devices. That’s why the mobile previews are staying for good.
“Years of testing has made it clear that video previews help our members browse less and discover new content more quickly. With the launch of mobile previews, we are bringing a video browse experience to your mobile phone in a fun and mobile-optimized way,”
The company also made headlines earlier this week by reaching a total of 125 million paying subscribers worldwide, taking over Amazon and Hulu. Despite increasing its fees, Netflix was able to get 7.4 million new subscribers in just the first quarter of 2018.
As some of you are familiar with, Apple used to have an app called Newsstand that consolidates several magazines and publications. However, users can only subscribe to individual publications. When they launched Apple News in 2015, it mirrored the Newsstand system.
Texture on the other hand, has a similar approach to Netflix. Users are able access about 200 publications by paying just $9.99 per month.
Apple now is reportedly planning to integrate Texture (and the team) with the existing Apple News group. Together, they will launch a premium service within a year.
Eddy Cue, Apple’s senior vice president of internet software and services, shared the company’s direction in a statement last month. “We are committed to quality journalism from trusted sources and allowing magazines to keep producing beautifully designed and engaging stories for users.”
Amazon beat out Netflix and purchased the rights to air the show for $250 million.
Last year, Amazon inked a deal to bring The Lord of the Rings series to the small screen. It cost $250 million and was signed with the Tolkien estate, publisher HarperCollins and New Line Cinema in November.
Given that they have only two years to kick-off production, budgets are already being discussed. THR reports that casting, visual effects and production costs may reach the $1 billion mark. This would make the series the most expensive show ever produced on television.
The Crown, an award-winning Netflix drama series, previously held the title. It cost $13 million per episode with 20 episodes in its latest season. Game of Thrones reportedly also upped their budget to $15 million per episode. The final six episodes of the GoT series will be aired later this year.
While little is known about the plot details of the series, Amazon does provide some info. The series will “explore new storylines preceding J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Fellowship of the Ring.”
Peter Jackson has yet to confirm whether or not he will be on board as an executive producer of the series. He directed, produced and wrote TheLord of the Rings trilogy and The Hobbit trilogy.
Amazon Studios will produce the five-season series that includes the potential for an additional spin-off series.
The media company wanted to stop using Gotham so they released their own custom font.
Netflix is now in the same league of tech companies that are using their own fonts. The list includes Google with Roboto and Product Sans font, Apple with their San Francisco, Microsoft with Segoe and Samsung with SamsungOne.
The new typeface called Netflix Sans will now be used across all their marketing and branding. The media streaming company’s in-house design team and foundry Dalton Mag developed the custom font.
Noah Nathan, the company’s design lead, explained in an interview with It’s Nice That that developing their own custom font was because of two reasons.
One reason was to give Netflix their own identity. Cost is the other quite obvious reason. The media streaming company operates globally, which means licensing fees for a font they use in all their materials can get pretty high.
“Developing this typeface not only created an ownable and unique element for the brand’s aesthetic…but saves the company millions of dollars a year as foundries move towards impression-based licensing for their typefaces in many digital advertising spaces,” Noah explains.
In the interview, he also gets into details about the technicalities of the font. He adds that the typeface is an “approachable geometric grotesque” the font. He describes the uppercase proportions as “cinematic” while the lowercase ones as “compact and efficient”.
To be honest, it just looks like a relative of Helvetica to me. Don’t you think?
Netflix Sans is available in different weights including regular, light, thin, medium, bold and black.
Cupertino-based Apple Inc. has announced this week that it inked an agreement to buy Texture, a digital magazine. Texture serves various articles for digital magazines numbering to 200. The digital magazines were published with a monthly fee in Windows, iOS, Android devices, among others.
Founded in 2010, Texture was known previously as the Next Issue. The company rebranded itself back in 2015. The company was founded by magazine publishers, and it raised $50 million from various company investors.
Apple is acquiring Texture
Also, Texture was launched in the hope that iPads and tablets could be a major platform for premium subscriptions. But obviously, what appears and becoming clear is that the future was not actually panning out.
Now the software giant has actually bought the whole company including the staff. Apple has assured that users that there would be an Android version of the app. However, Apple did not declare the acquisition price as of this posting.
“We’re excited Texture will join Apple, along with an impressive catalogue of magazines from many of the world’s leading publishers. We are committed to quality journalism from trusted sources and allowing magazines to keep producing beautifully designed and engaging stories for users,” Apple SVP Eddy Cue said in a statement on Monday.
Meanwhile, Texture CEO John Loughlin said: “I’m thrilled that Next Issue Media and its award-winning Texture app are being acquired by Apple.”
“The Texture team and its current owners, Condé Nast, Hearst, Meredith, Rogers Media, and KKR, could not be more pleased or excited about this development. We could not imagine a better home or future for the service,” Loughlin added.