Author Archives: Chris Davies

Writing for R3 Media since 2006, Chris Davies is currently executive editor for SlashGear and Android Community. Based in London, UK, he's responsible for SlashGear's editorial decisions and covers all forms of consumer technology. You can follow him on Twitter.

Lamborghini’s latest Aventador has a rubber obsession

Lamborghini’s latest Aventador has a rubber obsession

What the world needs, Lamborghini has decided, is an Aventador with a pinstripe. Thus we have this, the Aventador LP 700-4 Pirelli Edition, a special series celebrating not only the Italian supercar's 700 HP power, but the role Pirelli tires have played in getting all that power down to the road over the years. Set to hit forecourts for a lucky few drivers in early summer 2015, the new cars - available in Coupé and Roadster forms - keeps the V12 of the "regular" Aventador, but dresses it up in a sharp new suit with two-tone color scheme.

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“Ok Google” added to always-listening Chromebooks

“Ok Google” added to always-listening Chromebooks

Google has quietly added "Ok Google" support to its bleeding-edge Chromebooks, giving the web-centric notebooks the ability to listen out for voice commands with nary a button press, just as on Android phones and Android Wear smartwatches. The feature, part of the latest developer build available optionally through the Chrome OS Dev Channel, has to be manually enabled, but once active - and after a little voice training - the Chromebook will automatically open up a new search page whenever you say "Ok Google" and the screen is on.

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Microsoft’s Titanfall exclusive was a single-game deal

Microsoft’s Titanfall exclusive was a single-game deal

Titanfall's sequel looks unlikely to be a Microsoft exclusive, with Respawn Entertainment chief Vince Zampella confirming that the studio's deal over the AAA title was for the first installment alone. Details on "Titanfall 2" are, unsurprisingly, scant at this stage, but according to Zampella the collaboration with Microsoft - which proved so valuable in leveraging the server-side processing of the Xbox One Live Cloud, among other things - doesn't mean the new game will be Xbox One and PC-only. Meanwhile, he poured cold water on rumors that the next Titanfall might be free-to-play.

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Obama: Sony pulling The Interview was “a mistake”

Obama: Sony pulling The Interview was “a mistake”

President Obama has criticized Sony for pulling The Interview following the hack blamed on North Korea, saying that while he is "sympathetic" to its losses, he nonetheless believes "they made a mistake." Describing cyber-security as an "urgent issue," Obama drew parallels between the Sony Pictures Entertainment hack and other, perhaps more traditional types of terrorism, including the Boston Marathon bombing. However, while Obama confirmed that some sort of response by the US was in order, he declined to give any specific details as to what that might be.

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Fire Phone gets arty with Amazon update

Fire Phone gets arty with Amazon update

Amazon has given the Fire Phone a high-brow update, adding the ability to recognize famous works of art with its Firefly visual search system, in addition to making the little-loved handset more capable for business users. The update, taking Fire OS to v3.6.5 for AT&T versions of the phone, also adds flexibility to how the Fire Phone's camera processes images as part of its "Best Shot" feature, adds music controls to the lock screen, and challenges Google Calendar with Amazon Cloud Calendar synchronization of schedules across any other Amazon devices users might own.

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A huge ice reservoir could be hiding inside Mars

A huge ice reservoir could be hiding inside Mars

A vast cache of water or ice could be lurking just beneath the surface of Mars, scientists claims, using meteorite research to figure out where the "missing Martian water" might have actually ended up. While signs of the historic effects of subsurface and ground ice have been observed in previous orbital surveys, evidence for a lingering supply of water has proved troublesome to pin down, even though the red planet's history is believed to have seen it wet and warm. By looking at the make-up of Martian meteorites found on Earth, however, connections have been spotted between them and a possible surface reservoir.

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FBI accuses North Korea of Sony hack

FBI accuses North Korea of Sony hack

The FBI has named North Korea as responsible for the Sony hack which saw huge quantities of secret documents and movie details stolen, and culminated in the pulling of contentious film The Interview from theatrical release. In a statement today - and ahead of a speech from President Obama expected later on - the FBI said its investigation with Sony Pictures Entertainment along with other agencies meant it "now has enough information to conclude that the North Korean government is responsible for these actions." Exactly what happens next is unclear, though the FBI says it intends to "impose costs and consequences" on any individual, group, or nation state which conducts cyber-terrorism against US businesses.

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Google’s Project Ara adds NVIDIA and Marvell chips

Google’s Project Ara adds NVIDIA and Marvell chips

Google's Project Ara modular smartphone may be yet to convince everyone that it solves a legitimate problem, but we now at least know it won't be lacking power, with Marvell and NVIDIA both cooking up processor modules for the phone. NVIDIA is creating a Project Ara application processor module from its Tegra K1 - the same potent chipset found inside the Nexus 9 tablet, for instance - according to Google project chief Paul Eremenko, while Marvell is doing the same with its PXA1928 quadcore. It's not the only sign of manufacturer support for Google's big scheme to make future Androids piecemeal, either.

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The big Instagram losers lost millions

The big Instagram losers lost millions

Instagram's cull of spam accounts and users not toeing the line over community guidelines has taken a huge bite out of the follow counts for many high-profile users, a pre/post "Instapurge" survey has revealed. Announced last week as part of the photo-sharing social network's ongoing war against fake profiles, the spam sweep took effect yesterday and wiped anything from a handful of followers from some user's accounts, to several million from others - including Instagram's own account, in fact. Among the biggest losers have been musicians, with Justin Bieber, Beyonce, and Taylor Swift all seeing their fan numbers tumble, but it's the non-celebrity users who have been most vocal in their outrage.

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Google Fiber expansion news on ice

Google Fiber expansion news on ice

Google has slammed the brakes on its Google Fiber roll-out, telling eager internet addicts that its plans to go live in fresh cities across the US before the end of the year have been postponed until 2015. The search giant had originally maintained it would have an answer on the next locations to get high-speed service by the holidays, with many hoping to receive the gift of insanely fast connectivity - or at least the promise of it - among their other presents. However, 33 cities will now have to wait until the new year before they find out who gets fiber and when.

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