news

Which Company Makes the Best Camera Phone in 2018? Not Apple

Slashdot - Tue, 18/09/2018 - 18:11
Which smartphone takes the best photos? For years, the unequivocal answer to that question has been the iPhone. Apple has, for years, taken pride in the pictures its iPhones are able to capture. And rightly so. But over the years, the competition has been catching up, and now it feels like it has stolen that crown from the iPhone. Here's a review of various reviews of the iPhones. The Verge, reviewing the iPhone 6 launched in 2014: There's one feature that stands out, though, the one that most strongly makes the iPhone 6's case as the best smartphone on the planet: the camera. A year later, The Verge reviews the iPhone 6s: But these improvements aren't dramatic, since the previous rear camera was already terrific. Still, the new rear camera will maintain the iPhone's position as the best smartphone camera around. In another review, it said: I noticed slightly better macro performance and slightly better bokeh in a few shots, but Apple's been taking iPhone 6 photos and blowing them up to put on billboards for a year, so the bar is pretty damn high. Let's put it this way: the iPhone 6S is the best camera most people will ever own, but it's not going to keep anyone out of the market for a mirrorless rig. The camera review of the iPhone 7 Plus: This all adds up to a decent improvement, but the iPhone 6S was already operating at the top of the scale, bested only recently by the latest cameras in the Galaxy S7 and Note 7. In low light, that faster lens and optical image stabilization means that the 7 significantly outperforms the 6S. But compared to the iPhone 6S, the iPhone 7 is a step improvement, not a major leap. The camera review of the last year's iPhone 8 Plus: Over the past year, the S8 and Pixel pulled ahead of the iPhone 7 in various tests. Apple told me they don't look at benchmarks closely, but the images from the iPhone 8 camera definitely look more like Apple's competitors than before. Like Samsung, iPhone images are now more saturated by default, although Apple says it's still aiming for realism instead of the saturated colors and smoothing of the S8. And HDR is just on all the time, like the Pixel -- you can't turn it off, although you can set it to save a non-HDR image as well. We ran around shooting with an iPhone 8, a Pixel XL, and S8, and iPhone 7 on auto, and the iPhone 8 produced the most consistent and richest images of the group, although the Pixel was the clear winner several times, especially in extreme low light. The camera review of the $1,000 iPhone X, which was also launched last year: Now that we have an iPhone X and the Google Pixel 2, we're going to do a super in-depth camera comparison, but here's what I can tell you right now: the iPhone X has basically the same cameras as the iPhone 8, and the photos look almost exactly the same. And at the end of the day, I tend to prefer the photos from the Pixel 2 XL. And now, the camera review of the iPhone XS and XS Max, which The Verge published Tuesday (video): The camera upgrades in the XS over the X are significant. But I'm just going to come out and say this: I don't think the iPhone XS has better cameras than the [Google] Pixel 2 ... and Pixel 3 comes out in just a few weeks. Don't get me wrong, it's a really good camera, and I think people are going to like the photos it takes. But the Pixel 2 is the standard to beat and the iPhone XS doesn't do it for me.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Geeky Stuff

Nintendo Switch Online, a Paid Subscription Service Required For Console Owners To Access Internet-Enable Features Like Multiplayer Mode, To Launch This Evening

Slashdot - Tue, 18/09/2018 - 17:25
Nintendo announced Tuesday that its paid Nintendo Switch Online service will launch "later this evening," and that to prepare for the launch it will be taking the Switch eShop offline starting at 8 p.m. ET. From a report: It's expected to be unavailable for up to three hours, it said, putting the launch of Switch Online about 11 p.m. Tuesday night. Nintendo Switch Online comes with a seven-day free trial for all Nintendo Account holders. The official website for the service notes that it will cost $4 for a month, $8 for three months and $20 for a year. A family membership, which supports up to seven others in a family group, will run for $35 for a year. The Nintendo Switch Online service, which will be free to users to try for seven days, will be required for console owners to access any internet-enable features, including multiplayer and cloud saves. It will also grant them the ability to play 20 different Nintendo Entertainment System games at launch, although Nintendo hasn't revealed the entire lineup yet.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Geeky Stuff

Dragon Ball FighterZ, Dark Souls, Tekken 7 and more featured in Voidu's Namco sale

Eurogamer - Tue, 18/09/2018 - 17:11

This week at Voidu, you'll find a big bunch of Namco Bandai published titles (as well as a few extras) in the site's 'Weekly Sale' offering. You can take an extra 20 per cent off your purchase when you enter the code PLAYHARDER at checkout, too.

The range includes some of the lowest prices around on games like Tekken 7, Ark: Survival Evolved, Dragon Ball FighterZ, and more. Here are some of the highlights:

As previously mentioned, entering the code PLAYHARDER during checkout will take an extra 20 per cent off your purchase, which means an extra 20 per cent off the prices shown above. That code isn't limited to the weekly sale range, however, so you can get that extra discount on anything on the site, including some of the below.

Read more…

Categories: Video Games

Fortnite Switch bundle announced, but it's pretty underwhelming

Eurogamer - Tue, 18/09/2018 - 16:55

Last week, Nintendo unveiled a beautiful limited edition Pokémon Switch bundle. It features coloured Joy-Cons to match the Eevee and Pikachu theme, along with an elaborately decorated dock - a real treat for the eyes, although not for your wallet.

Fortnite fans, however, are not so lucky. The newly-announced Fortnite hardware bundle, which arrives in stores on the 5th of October, looks a little disappointing. It does include some exclusive in-game items, but the Switch itself comes in bog-standard colours, and there's no decoration on the dock. It feels like a bit of a missed opportunity - particularly as there's no shortage of art inspiration for a Fortnite-themed console.

So what's actually included? To accompany the console there's 1000 V-Bucks for players to spend in-game, along with the Double Helix item bundle, which contains "a unique Character Outfit, Back Bling, Glider and Pickaxe". From the picture on the box, they don't look particularly Nintendo-themed (apart from the red and white colour scheme).

Read more…

Categories: Video Games

Linux Community To Adopt New Code of Conduct

Slashdot - Tue, 18/09/2018 - 16:42
Following Linus Torvalds' public apology for his behavior over the years, the Linux Community said it will be adopting a new "Code of Conduct", which pledges to make "participation in our project and our community a harassment-free experience for everyone, regardless of age, body size, disability, ethnicity, sex characteristics, gender identity and expression, level of experience, education, socio-economic status, nationality, personal appearance, race, religion, or sexual identity and orientation."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Geeky Stuff

Mario Kart trending worldwide after President Trump Toad penis comparison

Eurogamer - Tue, 18/09/2018 - 16:24

Nintendo fans were left shocked and upset today at the astonishing disclosure from adult film star Stormy Daniels that US president Donald Trump's penis looks like Mario character Toad.

In a salacious excerpt from her upcoming book Full Disclosure published this morning by The Guardian, Daniels described the leader of the free world's manhood thus:

"He knows he has an unusual penis. It has a huge mushroom head. Like a toadstool...

Read more…

Categories: Video Games

Many Job Ads on Facebook Illegally Exclude Women, ACLU Says

Slashdot - Tue, 18/09/2018 - 16:02
Facebook's advertising platform is being used by prospective employers to discriminate against women, according to a lawsuit filed Tuesday. From a report: The American Civil Liberties Union, joined by a labor union and a law firm that specializes in representing employees, has filed a written charge against Facebook with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the federal agency that enforces anti-discrimination laws in the workplace. The charge asks for an investigation of the social media company and an injunction against what it calls discriminatory practices at a company with a sizable influence over the U.S. labor market. It also claims Facebook's system violates anti-discrimination provisions of the 1964 Civil Rights Act. The social network has faced sustained criticism for years that it fails to stop discriminatory ads of various kinds, from housing ads that exclude certain races to job ads targeted only at younger workers. In August, Facebook said it would remove 5,000 targeted advertising options from its platform in an effort to prevent discrimination.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Geeky Stuff

Sega Mega Drive classics to get Nintendo Switch release

Eurogamer - Tue, 18/09/2018 - 15:30

Surprising no one, Sega will bring its Mega Drive Classics compilation to Nintendo Switch later this year.

Already available for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, this medley of Mega Drive games features more than 50 titles.

The Nintendo Switch version adds local co-op via split-screen - a nice feature - alongside the online multiplayer, achievements, mirror modes, rewind and save states available in other versions.

Read more…

Categories: Video Games

Video Game Loot Boxes Under Scrutiny By 16 Gambling Regulators

Slashdot - Tue, 18/09/2018 - 15:00
An anonymous reader writes: Gambling regulators from 16 agencies signed an agreement Monday in an effort to tackle the "blurring of lines between gaming and gambling." The international coalition, made up of European agencies and the Washington State Gambling Commission, said it's calling on the video game industry and tech platforms to help crack down on unlicensed third-party sites offering illegal gambling in video games. The coalition also said game providers have to make sure that features like loot boxes, which let players pay real money to purchase in-game items to artificially advance their power levels, aren't considered gambling under national laws. This kind of pushback could impact the decisions of video game makers. UK-based Gambling Commission said in a statement: "We are increasingly concerned with the risks being posed by the blurring of lines between gambling and other forms of digital entertainment such as video gaming. Concerns in this area have manifested themselves in controversies relating to skin betting, loot boxes, social casino gaming and the use of gambling themed content within video games available to children."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Geeky Stuff

CD Projekt Red dates full Gwent: The Witcher Card Game release, and standalone Thronebreaker adventure

Eurogamer - Tue, 18/09/2018 - 14:12

Gwent: The Witcher Card Game, and related-but-standalone single-player Gwent adventure Thronebreaker: The Witcher Tales, will be released 23rd October on PC, and then on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One 4th December.

Gwent: The Witcher Card Game has been in public beta on PC for a while but there's still one enormous update to come: Homecoming. Homecoming will completely change the visual style, taking the board into three-dimensions and having hero characters stand to the side of play. The three playing lanes will be reduced to two, too, and there will be new mechanics added. The developer diary below offers a glimpse at what Homecoming will look like; watch it, it's seriously impressive.

Thronebreaker: The Witcher Tales is the ambitious 30-hour single-player adventure which stands alone from the Gwent multiplayer game. The cards you use there are exclusive to Thronebreaker, although some inspired-by cards will be added to Gwent.

Read more…

Categories: Video Games

Spyro: Myths Awaken fan game is looking pretty fly

Eurogamer - Tue, 18/09/2018 - 13:14

Ask any Spyro fan why they still enjoy playing the old games, and they will probably come back with the same answer: nostalgia. It's motivated an entire remake of the original Spyro Trilogy, and it's the word that instantly sprang to mind when I came across Spyro: Myths Awaken.

The game is a fan-made sequel to the Insomniac trilogy, and takes place in an alternative timeline to the events of Enter The Dragonfly and A Hero's Tail. Instead of re-doing the artwork of the original stories (like Spyro: Reignited Trilogy), the game will provide a brand new story with the retro Spyro design. It's mainly being made by a small team with Unity, but as you can see by the latest progress video, it's ambitious.

According to team member Cyreides, the story begins with a bored Spyro and Sparx "longing for new adventure". Things will not stay peaceful for long, however, as an enigmatic figure known as Gaia will whisk Spyro away to Mythica, where he will have to prevent Medusa from succeeding in her quest for immortality. Be careful what you wish for, Spyro.

Read more…

Categories: Video Games

Someone's remade Nintendo Labo with Lego, and it works

Eurogamer - Tue, 18/09/2018 - 12:14

Nintendo Labo is pretty sturdy for something made entirely out of cardboard - but it's a platform designed to be played with and experimented on. So what better marriage of ideas than a mix of Labo with Lego - a construction toy created with the same sense of creativity in mind.

Step up designer Vimar Patel, who has made Lego versions of the Labo piano, motorbike and fishing rod which fit the Switch's Joy-Con controllers perfectly - albeit with a small amount of 3D-printing. Here's a video of Patel's creations in action (thanks, The Verge).

Best of all, it works!

Read more…

Categories: Video Games

Apple's AirPower Wireless Charger Is Facing Overheating Issues, Says Reports

Slashdot - Tue, 18/09/2018 - 12:00
Two separate reports are saying Apple's yet-to-be-released AirPower charger is facing overheating issues. The product, designed to simultaneously charge an iPhone, Apple Watch, and AirPods, was announced more than a year ago at Apple's 2017 iPhone event. Apple has yet to provide any additional information on AirPower, even during its iPhone event last week. The company even appears to have wiped all mention of it from its website. CNBC reports: Tech writer Sonny Dickson, who has a track record of accurately reporting on Apple, said over the weekend that Apple has struggled with heat management, which affects accuracy and charging speed. Dickson thinks it's unlikely Apple will make its end-of-year release deadline. Daring Fireball's John Gruber said something similar. Gruber said the charging pad, which uses a multi-coil design, is "getting too hot -- way too hot." "There are engineers who looked at AirPower's design and said it could never work, thermally. ... I think they've either had to go completely back to the drawing board and start over with an entirely different design, or they've decided to give up and they just don't want to say so," Gruber said. Apple gave a broad timeline for AirPower's launch, saying it would go on sale in 2018. So it is still possible it can work out any issues before the end of the year.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Geeky Stuff

Offbeat JRPG classic Resonance of Fate gets PS4, PC remaster

Eurogamer - Tue, 18/09/2018 - 11:05

Offbeat 2010 role-playing game Resonance of Fate will get a new lease of life with the wonderfully-named Resonance of Fate 4K / HD Edition.

This buffed up version of tri-Ace's futuristic JRPG lands on PC and PlayStation 4 worldwide on 18th October via digital download.

Resonance of Fate is memorable for its unique battle system, where you juggle control of three characters in semi real-time scraps, its hex-shaped maps, and a generally pretty weird story. Here's a taste:

Read more…

Categories: Video Games

Fortnite's Playground mode gets a portable Spiky Stadium

Eurogamer - Tue, 18/09/2018 - 10:46

Fortnite's new update seems to be about taking portable items to a whole new level, as along with the Port-A-Fortress, players will now be able to throw down an entire stadium in Playground mode.

The new Spiky Stadium arena was announced in the latest patch notes, and promises to give players a space to "imagine new ways to play". From the image Epic shared, the stadium appears to contain both launch pads and spike walls - a real 50:50 there. It also sounds like the arena can be placed anywhere and will appear instantly, "ready to go for any mini-game your squad can think up". I bet Spurs wish this item was real. Apart from the spiky walls, perhaps. That would be a health and safety issue.

In other Fortnite update news, Epic has U-turned on its decision to allow the storm to destroy structures during the final circles of the match. This had been pretty unpopular with players, who felt the end-game had become a question of "are we going to fall?"

Read more…

Categories: Video Games

How pack odds in FIFA 19 work

Eurogamer - Tue, 18/09/2018 - 10:06

EA has opened up about pack probability in FIFA Ultimate Team.

As reported by Eurogamer in June, EA Sports has introduced pack odds disclosures across its sports games this year, including in FIFA 19's Ultimate Team mode.

In a post on the EA Sports website, the company showed an image of how the pack odds disclosure will look in FIFA 19. You can now view the pack probabilities of any pack sold on the store before buying.

Read more…

Categories: Video Games

Frozen Synapse 2 review - sharp tactical shenanigans in a fractious cyber-city

Eurogamer - Tue, 18/09/2018 - 09:00

What did you do during the incursions? When the city was under threat from within and without, when the petty, tooled-up factions were bristling and looking for any excuse to kick off, and then every few minutes they would burst through cyberspace (or whatever it is) at a new location and initiate a major scuffle?

Well, I delivered a lot of packages.

In Frozen Synapse 2 it is surprisingly easy to find yourself skint: factions disappointed in you and cutting funding, easy jobs neglected because urgent matters got in the way. For my first few games, my finances were constantly tanking, which meant I couldn't hire enough talent to get me through even the simplest combat mission, which in turn meant that I couldn't receive regular cash injections from taking on the simplest combat missions in the first place - defence contracts, venture prevention. I was behind the power curve. So instead, I had to go to the absolute lowest paying, least dangerous fare imaginable. I had to effectively throw away my early-game hopes and become a parcel courier. I was hired, originally, to hold this city together, and yet here I am taking boxes around and dropping them off. How brilliant! No, seriously. How deeply brilliant that this glittering neon cyberpunk affair should have plenty of room to explore an emergent gig economy. It's not really a dystopia until someone's left you a little postcard saying that the goods you ordered are with a non-existent neighbour.

Read more…

Categories: Video Games

Saudi Arabia Invests $1 Billion In Potential Tesla Rival

Slashdot - Tue, 18/09/2018 - 09:00
Saudi Arabia is investing more than $1 billion in Lucid Motors, an electric car startup that may give Tesla a run for their money. CNN reports: Lucid is planning a new high-performance electric car. It said the investment from Saudi Arabia's sovereign wealth fund announced Monday will allow it to finish engineering on its first car, the Lucid Air, as well as build a factory in Casa Grande, Arizona, and begin to sell the car by 2020. Saudi Arabia is already a big investor in Tesla. Last month Tesla CEO Elon Musk disclosed that the Saudis had taken nearly a 5% stake in his electric car company. Musk said that the Saudis had been urging him for almost two years to take Tesla private, offering to provide funds necessary to do so. (Musk announced the plan to go private in August but quickly dropped the idea.) Saudi Arabia is investing in electric vehicles to diversify away from its dependence on oil. Lucid's Chief Technology Officer, Peter Rawlinson, was formerly a vice president and chief vehicle engineer at Tesla. He helped design the Model S, the company's breakthrough car. He left Tesla in 2012, shortly after the Model S went into production.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Geeky Stuff

Twitter Is Reviving the Chronological Timeline

Slashdot - Tue, 18/09/2018 - 07:00
In a series of tweets, Twitter announced it will be bringing back the purely chronological timeline in the coming weeks. Currently, the timeline is set up to deliver tweets that people "might have missed" or things supposedly "liked" by people they follow, but some have complained that it misses tweets. Engadget reports: A change that's in place now, is Twitter's "Show the best Tweets first" setting. Starting today, if a user has it turned off it will also eliminate the "In case you missed it" roundups and suggested tweets from people you don't follow. It sounds like exactly the change people have been looking for, and even pursued by setting up filters on their own like the one found at RealTwitter.com.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Geeky Stuff

US Congress Passes Bill To Help Advanced Nuclear Power

Slashdot - Tue, 18/09/2018 - 05:30
An anonymous reader quotes a report from Ars Technica: Last week, the House passed a bipartisan bill that originated in the Senate called the Nuclear Energy Innovation Capabilities Act (S. 97), which will allow the private sector to partner with U.S. National Laboratories to vet advanced nuclear technologies. The bill also directs the Department of Energy (DOE) to lay the ground work for establishing "a versatile, reactor-based fast neutron source." The Senate also introduced a second bill called the Nuclear Energy Leadership Act (S. 3422) last Thursday, which would direct the DOE to actually establish that fast neutron reactor. That bill also directs the DOE to "make available high-assay, low-enriched uranium" for research purposes. The Nuclear Energy Leadership Act has not yet made it past a Senate vote. The report also mentions a recent U.S. Court of Appeals ruling to keep older reactors online. "The court said that subsidies for nuclear energy proposed by Illinois don't cause any interference with federal control over interstate power markets, which is prohibited," reports Ars. "In 2017 the state of Illinois agreed to offer a Zero Emissions Credit that included nuclear energy (PDF). The credit was opposed by fossil fuel generators and by the Electric Power Supply Association, who sued the director of the Illinois Power Agency. But the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) and the Department of Justice filed a joint brief in the case several months ago, saying those federal agencies had no problem with Illinois' credit system, according to Utility Dive."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Geeky Stuff
Syndicate content