opinion

Will new Microsoft CEO Nadella sell the Xbox division?

Will new Microsoft CEO Nadella sell the Xbox division?

Here's a question for you: will Satya Nadella, Microsoft's newly appointed chief executive, sell the Xbox division?

There have been some rumblings in the past that Microsoft could sell the Xbox division, but it's not been clear which companies would actually want to own the business. It also might make it a harder sell, since the company recently acquired the rights to the Gears of War franchise, and has continued to say that the Halo franchise will be an important part of its gaming strategy over the next several years.

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Facebook turns 10 – will it make it to 20?

Facebook turns 10 – will it make it to 20?

Facebook has turned ten, and though the terrible teens are still a few years off, the predators are already circling. The social site celebrated its tenth birthday in a fairly low-key way, giving each user a custom highlights video dubbed "A Look Back" picking out their most popular moments on the site, but the anniversary has been overshadowed by the ongoing trademark spat with app developer FiftyThree over who gets to use the name "Paper". It's perhaps a perfect example of how to many Facebook is now perceived: lumbering heavyweight rather than agile upstart.

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10 years from now it’s Google’s world: we’ll just be living in it

10 years from now it’s Google’s world: we’ll just be living in it

I don't have a crystal ball, so it's hard for me to see into the future like some. But the writing appears to be on the wall in the technology industry: Google, the company that made a name for itself in search, will go on to become the most influential and important company in the world within the next decade. Moreover, the company's efforts will turn us all into citizens of a world we'll call Google.

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Google’s Glass frames are pretty but dumb

Google’s Glass frames are pretty but dumb

Google has finally revealed its frame options for Glass, the Titanium Collection, with four styles and the chance to have prescription lenses fitted. It addresses a long-standing complain about the wearable computer, and something Google knew it had to fix before the consumer launch before the end of 2014. Problem is, as a Glass Explorer and someone who wears prescription glasses to correct my vision, it feels like Google hasn't thought through exactly how the frames will work in everyday use.

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It’s time, Nintendo: Kill Wii U and think big

It’s time, Nintendo: Kill Wii U and think big

I know I've said this before, but it's official now: the time has come for Nintendo, at long last, to kill the Wii U and move into other areas in which it might be able to actually grow its business.

Nintendo earlier this week announced that it's been forced to slash its Wii U sales expectations by millions of units, saying that it felt the heat from a wide range of players in the market, including Sony and Microsoft. The company also didn't seem to believe that the world wouldn't care about the Wii U. Oh, how wrong Nintendo was.

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The secret to Nest’s future success: Be as un-Google as possible

The secret to Nest’s future success: Be as un-Google as possible

When Google announced last week that it had agreed to acquire Nest for more than $3 billion, there appeared to be a general consensus in the tech world: bad news.

While it's true that Google has acquired companies in the past, like Motorola, that it has largely left alone, its track record of ensuring a company is actually kept intact with the same culture that made it popular and successful isn't necessarily so great. And there's some concern – despite Google's own best assurances to the contrary – that the search giant might again hurt Nest.

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Net Neutrality is a mess: We can’t even decide what the Internet is

Net Neutrality is a mess: We can’t even decide what the Internet is

The internet as we know it is in peril. Verizon's victory in the court of appeal this week, seeing the FCC's attempts to regulate broadband providers in the name of Net Neutrality defeated, has the potential to change how we access the internet and web services like Netflix, Hulu, and others more fundamentally than 2013's SOPA threatened to. In question isn't whether internet access should be a free-for-all, but what it is fundamentally, legally classified as, and who therefore has control over what gets shuttled through: Verizon and the broadband providers, in control of the "pipes", or the FCC as protector of infrastructure that uses public rights of way. For all both sides are claiming some degree of victory this week, we're still no closer to settling that fundamental question.

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I, for one, welcome our new Google Nest overlords

I, for one, welcome our new Google Nest overlords

Google's acquisition of Nest is controversial, for more than a few reasons. On the one hand, there are questions around how Google Ventures-invested companies segue into Google-owned divisions; many users are concerned as to whether Google will simply absorb nest and then one day simply shut down the project as it moves onto other things. Most upsetting, however, seems to be the question of privacy and whether - for all Nest CEO Tony Fadell insists the firm has no plans to modify the privacy policy - one day Google will be using Nest hardware as another spy into the home. The news has got some Nest owners threatening to rip the thermostats from their walls.

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CES 2014 Post-Mortem: The Qualified Quantified Self

CES 2014 Post-Mortem: The Qualified Quantified Self

CES 2014 has come and gone, and as the dust settles it's time to pick over the remains of the show. The Consumer Electronics Show demands a theme - or at least we in the industry demand a theme of it - and 2014 proved to be wearables, with a little competition from Ultra HD (again) and big, curved TVs (again). That came as no great shock, since analysts have been telling us 2014 is to be "the year of wearables" pretty much since 2013 started out; if there was any degree of surprise, it was in quite how "me too" the various devices were on show.

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It’s Time for the Game Industry to Adopt a Controller Standard

It’s Time for the Game Industry to Adopt a Controller Standard

The time has come: the video game industry must finally come together to pick a single standard for game controllers that will work across platforms and easily handle gameplay on any device.

At the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) this week, a slew of companies showed off their own Steam Machines. That, coupled with the latest-generation consoles, the possibility of the Tegra K1 bringing yet more set-top boxes into the gaming space, and products like Ouya, sitting on store shelves, it becomes all the more apparent that we’re in gaming overload.

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