Features

One year later: Where is Valve’s SteamOS?

One year later: Where is Valve’s SteamOS?

A leaked vision of the next SteamOS "Steam Controller" this morning reminds us that it's been nearly a year since Valve took to CES 2014 and brought us our first look at Steam Machines. Here 11 months later and the finalized version of SteamOS has not yet been released. Instead we've got the latest version of the Steam Client Beta update with an image which reminds us of how much we've seen - not a whole lot. Not that the final version is going to be all that different from Big Picture Mode in Steam, that is to say.

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You don’t want a Facebook Dislike button

You don’t want a Facebook Dislike button

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg had a Q&A session last night in which he spoke about Facebook's missing "Dislike" button. We've got the thumbs up, but we don't have the thumbs down. He took a stab at a question about this feature this week because it the Like button is "an important way to sympathize or empathize with someone in an important moment that someone put themselves out there to share." The Dislike button, on the other hand, wouldn't exactly be an addition made without risks.

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How Google Cardboard takes you on the VR stage with Paul McCartney

How Google Cardboard takes you on the VR stage with Paul McCartney

This week we've had a chat with Jens Christensen, CEO of Jaunt, the company that's bringing everyday Google Cardboard users to the concert stage with artists like Jack White and Paul McCartney. Jaunt deals in Virtual Reality experiences, collecting events and locations with their unique camera setups, turning that media into video. With Paul McCartney, this journey began with Award-Winning Film Director Mark Romanek. This fellow Romanek is associated with both Paul McCartney and Jaunt, working in the role of one of their advisors. Once McCartney saw Jaunt's technology in action, he invited the crew to his next concert.

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Star Wars 7 heroes named officially

Star Wars 7 heroes named officially

This afternoon the folks at Lucasfilm have decided to reveal the names of the characters that'll be heading the next three Star Wars movies. They've done this with a set of vintage Star Wars trading cards, the likes of which you'll recognize if you were alive when the original trilogy was released - or if you're just a very big fan with eyes on the classics. Here you'll see every hero from the first teaser trailer released this year - all at once, in official fashion!

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Ford Sync 3 revealed: a whole new system with QNX

Ford Sync 3 revealed: a whole new system with QNX

This week the folks at Ford have revealed their grand re-design of Sync. This is their in-car infotainment and control center software, and this release will be called Sync 3. The big departure comes in Ford's ending of their relationship for software here with Microsoft - Sync and Sync 2 were made with Microsoft - and picking up of BlackBerry's in-car software system QNX. This means touchscreen capabilities, at last, as well as a user interface that's far more recognizable to the smartphone-using age than previous Sync releases.

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Facebook Search Update: use it before it uses you

Facebook Search Update: use it before it uses you

This week the folks responsible for the search algorithms under the surface of Facebook have made a big update. They're rolling this Search Update out to desktop users throughout the week, and iPhone and iPad users will see it before the end of the week in an app update - Android has not yet been mentioned. What you need to know about this update depends on what kind of a Facebook user you are. Do I get embarrassed easily by old photos? This is the first question you must ask yourself.

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You don’t want a Samsung Gear VR

You don’t want a Samsung Gear VR

You might not want a Samsung Gear VR - not yet, anyway. The first Samsung Gear VR you're going to see on the market - as early as this afternoon - is the Samsung Gear VR Innovator Edition. This may look like a consumer release, but it's not. AT&T may be suggesting that it is, and Samsung may be suggesting that it is, the team at Oculus VR are making relatively clear that this is not meant to be the end-all, be-all release for the Gear VR. It's got Oculus branding on it, after all - they're not going to let anything out the gate suggesting it's final before they agree 100% that it is, truly, ready for everyone.

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If Nintendo teamed with Google

If Nintendo teamed with Google

If Nintendo teamed with Google, great things would happen. Nintendo would go mobile - and it'd go mobile in style. If Nintendo teamed with Google today, they'd release their game archives as apps, all contained inside an original NES emulator, one that exists as the only place you're able to play these games outside the original NES or Wii. We can imagine this reality thanks to an artist named WoopWoopWoopWooop. He's from Reddit, and this is a mockup. It's not real, but we wish it was.

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Xiaomi tipped to enter US market in 2015

Xiaomi tipped to enter US market in 2015

As early as January of 2015, Xiaomi may well make its move for the United States mobile market. It's suggested that Xiaomi may do this with the smartphone "Mi5", showing off this Qualcomm Snapdragon-toting device at CES 2015 in their first-ever appearance inside the USA. This device is currently priced at CNY1,999, converted to right around $325 USD off-contract. If this pricing schedule continues through a USA-based released, even the most major smartphone manufactures might be turning an attentive eye toward China.

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YotaPhone 2 first-impressions – Odd E Ink Allure

YotaPhone 2 first-impressions – Odd E Ink Allure

You have to give the team at Yota credit for not giving up on their dual-display smartphone dream. The original YotaPhone was a curious - but flawed - riff on the Android smartphone, a regular screen on one side and an E Ink panel on the back, let down by immature software and hardware. Now, with the YotaPhone 2, the company believes both concept and product are ready for the mass market. I’ve been trying the new smartphone out this week ahead of sales kicking off today, and it’s clear there certainly are advantages over opting for more screens, rather than just bigger ones. Read on for some first-impressions.

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