Archive for the ‘Gaming’ Category

Weekly News Roundup (19 July 2015)

Sunday, July 19th, 2015

Welcome to another edition of the WNR. Windows 10 is just around the corner, and most believe it will be the Windows 7 to 8’s Vista (if you know what I mean). I’ve been using Windows 8 for about 4 months now, and it really isn’t as bad as people make out, although definitely not as good as it should be. So I’ll be upgrading to Windows 10 as soon as possible (and by as soon possible, I mean until others have tried it on the Surface Pro 3 and found no real problems with it).

Here’s this week’s news …

Copyright

Censorship

Piracy site censorship doesn’t stop piracy, and may actually give piracy sites a boost

There’s more evidence this week that piracy site censorship just doesn’t work. In fact, not only does it not work, it seems to actually help boost piracy, by giving undue publicity to sites that have been blocked. A new study from Italy gives evidence showing a dozen different sites all gaining in popularity after being blocked in Italy, including sites that had almost zero profile in the country prior to the banning. One site even managed to enjoy a 1000% (that’s one *thousand* percent!) increase in search engine traffic after the blocking took place, all largely thanks to the media (and online) attention gained by the block.

It’s almost as if the list of blocked sites has become a list of must-visit piracy sites, and the numerous proxies sites (many of which were set up to make easy advertising dollars) that spring up for these blocked sites also help with the visibility of these sites on search engines.

None of this will make any different to rights-holders though, since to them, any action, no matter how pointless, is better than actually addressing the real issues at hand. Embracing change and innovating is just too hard and risky, in their minds.

One unwanted change that might be happening is this: DRM for JPG. It sounds like a terrible idea at first thought, and it might just turn out to be one, but the standards committee, JPEG, says that the DRM will mainly be for privacy reasons. The DRM could be used, for example, to protect your private photos – and if these photos were to leak online, the original owners can simply activate the DRM controls and make the photos unviewable. It could also be used to prevent government surveillance, as one research paper noted recently (although my guess is that the encryption used in the DRM would be a trivial to break for any half competent government agency).

All of this sounds nice, but you just know that once the DRM is in there, privacy won’t be the only application for it. News and photo sites will use it to prevent copying of images (although they can’t prevent the simple print-screen), and porn sites may even use it to protect their content.

High Definition

The Simpsons Season 17 Blu-ray

Studios treating Blu-ray like a mass consumer format, when it was always just a niche format, along with inconsistent releasing has ruined the format, says Blu-ray producers

Blu-ray is a failure. This sounds strange coming from someone who has purchased hundreds of Blu-ray discs, and will continue to purchase them, but given the expectations behind the format, it certainly can’t be considered a total success. And this expectation, Blu-ray producers say, is exactly why studios have failed Blu-ray.

A panel of top Blu-ray producers at Comic-Con let loose on studios and how the Blu-ray format as mismanaged. They say that instead of being the next DVD, Blu-ray was always going to be a niche format, a format that only those that wanted to absolute top picture and audio quality would want. For most people, they say, DVD (and now downloads and streaming) is more than good enough.

But studios expected more, and they will label anything less than their expectations as a failure, including Blu-ray. The panelists fear that studios will make the same mistake with 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray, which they say is even more of a niche format than Blu-ray (fair enough, considering how few people will have 4K TVs by the time the new disc format launches at the end of the year).

The producers also criticised studio greed in relation to “double dipping” (making people buy the same content over and over again) and the lack of commitment to releasing (such as suddenly stopping releases of season box sets half way through the collection), all of which led to consumers losing confidence in the format.

And that confidence is shifting to other ways to watch content, such as streaming. With Netflix alone now accounting for 36% of all peak download traffic in North America, consumers are definitely voting with their feet. However, while Netflix is popular, a quick browse through their catalogue still shows just how much content isn’t on there. While some of it are on rival subscription streaming platforms, but even when you combine the content on Netflix, Amazon, Hulu and HBO Now, there’s still a huge swathe of content that’s missing, especially newer content. DVD and Blu-ray is the the studio’s platform of choice for these types of content, but it may not be the consumer’s choice.

New Netflix UI

Netflix is great, but most of the stuff you want to watch won’t be on there

And this is where piracy comes in – to fill the gaps between consumer demand and studio supply. Which is why I completely disagree with the statement made by Shaun James, the chief executive of Australian streaming platform Presto. James says: “It’s a really hard argument for a pirate to run when you’ve got a multitude of services from $10 per month, to say it’s too expensive, I can’t get it, I can’t afford it – that’s a really shallow argument.”

Shallow or Straw Man? Presto is the exclusive streaming providers for HBO content in Australia, but you cannot watch any new shows or even old episodes of Game of Thrones on it, because Presto’s owner, cable operator Foxtel, has locked up these programming exclusively to their cable platform. The cheapest package to get Game of Thrones in HD on Foxtel costs USD $40 per month, and requires a cable or satellite set up that isn’t available everywhere – so the argument “I can’t get it, I can’t afford it” still seem fairly valid.

With that said, there will always be people that are unwilling to pay for content no matter how cheap, or easily available, it is. These people are not the problem though, because you can’t lose money from people that were never going to pay.

Gaming

PS4 DualShock 4 Controller

PS4 leading in hardware and software sales

It’s not the hardware, it’s the games. When it comes to making money off video games, this is certainly true. This is why game companies often take an initial loss on the game console to gain market share, so they can easily recoup the losses via game sales and licensing.

And for the current generation, Sony is definitely the winner so far when it comes to market share. Ubisoft’s earnings reveal just how far ahead the PS4 really is at this stage, with 27 percent of Ubisoft’s game sales happening on Sony’s platform, compared to just 11% for the Xbox One (the 360 and PS3 were also on 11%, just to give you a comparison of how poorly the XBO is doing).

It’s not game over yet though for Microsoft’s console. The backwards compatibility addition should help, but only price cuts will help the Xbox One catch up.

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And on that note, we come to the end of another WNR. Hope you’ve enjoyed reading. See you next week.

Weekly News Roundup (12 July 2015)

Sunday, July 12th, 2015

I guess I should update everyone on my experiment with using the Microsoft Surface Pro 3 as my desktop, laptop and Windows tablet replacement. Simply speaking, it’s fantastic. When the SP3 is in the dock accessory, connected to my monitor with my Logitech wireless KB/m setup (the Logitech MX Master is a thing of beauty, BTW – well for right handed people anyway), it feels exactly likely using a desktop. On the go, when I have the Type Cover on, it can be used just like any laptop (the screen is a bit smaller though, but it is a very lovely screen though) and it’s quite good considering it’s not a “real” keyboard/trackpad, but just a cover accessory attached to a tablet. I don’t use it in pure tablet mode  that much (that is, with the Type Cover removed or folded back), since it’s a too big and heavy to be used in the normal tablety way, although certainly still very usable.

Overall, it’s a great little device and more than capable for most types of work. And I’m really looking forward to Windows 10 as well, which will really make the device shine.

And no, I have not received any financial incentives from Microsoft to encourage me to make these positive statements (although I wouldn’t say no if they decide to send me a goodie or two, *hint* *hint*).

Also, this Star Wars Comic-con video almost made me weep sweet tears of joy! Just wanted to put it out there.

Ah, yes, the news roundup …

Copyright

CloudFlare Error Page

CloudFlare under attack, not by DDoS, but by the RIAA

Once again, the RIAA has been caught, and “reprimanded” (this time by a US District Court) for trying to get everyone else to do its own work and leaving a large mess of collateral damage in its wake.

The RIAA tried to get content delivery network CloudFlare to close down sites that were using domain names similar to the now defunct Grooveshark, the music streaming that the RIAA shut down last year. But instead of identifying infringing sites and notifying CloudFlare, the RIAA filed an injunction to force CloudFlare to close down any site that has the term “grooveshark” as part of its domain name.

This means that sites that are perfectly legal would have to be shut down, just because they had the “offending” keyword as part of their domain name. CloudFlare, who along with other service providers, quickly filed their opposition to the injunction, arguing that freedom of speech rights would be put at risk. CloudFlare even provided a real example of how the RIAA’s actions could have serious and unexpected consequences by pointing to protest site groovesharkcensorship.cf, which was set up specifically to protest the RIAA’s actions. This totally legitimate site that was exercising its free speech rights to criticize the RIAA was shut down due to the RIAA’s injunction, something I’m sure even the RIAA had not intended.

Luckily, the court sided with CloudFlare’s argument and ended the RIAA’s attempt again to make things easy for themselves (and screw the consequences).

It seems to me that the RIAA has started to lose the plot with their lawsuits. They’re not even going after actual infringing sites anymore – any site that even hints at being related or friendly to unauthorised music downloads is now a target. What hasn’t changed is the RIAA’s insistence on assigning responsibility to everyone else, and getting them to do the heavy lifting. It’s something that the District Court didn’t agree with though, saying that the onus is still on the rights-holders to identify infringing sites (after all, they’re the ones best placed to know whether their own properties have been infringed or not).

Concert crowd

Piracy brings fans to my concerts, says David Guetta

All of this misses the point anyway. The point has always been, and should always be about money being lost to piracy, and ways to minimize this. Spraying lawsuits everywhere does not really solve any problems, and the problem in the first place may not be as big as the record companies believe. If you don’t want to take my word for it, then listen to someone who actually works in the music industry, DJ and producer David Guetta. Guetta’s pragmatic views towards piracy are particularly refreshing – while he prefers an “ideal” world where there is no piracy and he gets paid (a lot more) for every download or listen, he also realises that piracy is not a zero sum game. Guetta says that piracy helps him to gain more fans that he otherwise wouldn’t get if these people were successfully barred from downloading illegally, and that these fans will spend money at some stage, whether it’s concerts or merchandise, or even re-buying the songs they’ve downloaded illegally to support the artist.

Of course, the record labels represented by the RIAA may not get some or all of the money that these downloaders will spend at some stage. But that’s because making music available to the listening public is a job that’s no longer worth as much as it once was (getting a song being heard by people, or published as a record, once upon a time, was a tough task – today, we have self publishing, and piracy can do some the promotional work that artists once had to rely on record labels to do). It’s called progress, and this is what the RIAA is trying desperately to fight.

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Chrome Harmful Programs warning

Chrome blocks torrent sites, but not for the reason you think

The news that Google’s Chrome browser has started to block pretty much all of the major torrent sites, including KickassTorrents, Torrentz and RARBG. The sites were blocked with a warning that these sites were offering “harmful programs”.

Website owners can normally check Google Webmaster Tools to see why their site was blocked, but the operators of these torrent sites could not find anything listed as being wrong.

So the first thought that many had was that this may be some kind of new anti-piracy measure being rolled out by Google, under coercion from the MPAA and others.

But the actual situation was much more simpler. The problem stems from advertising and sponsored links that these sites had, which may have linked to other sites that were offering the programs Google was warning about (specifically, Potentially Unwanted Programs, or PUPs, such as toolbar installers and other programs and offers bundled with installers). Google has been particularly sensitive in blocking these kind of sites recently, and perhaps a tweak in their algorithm flagged the torrent sites, most of which may have been using the same advertiser or software sponsor. The reason Google Webmaster Tools (GWT) did not show anything at first was because the information in GWT is delayed, something I have personal experience with in relation to false positive DMCA requests that I’ve had to deal with in GWT.

Most of the blocks have been removed now, once the sites in question dealt with the issue and submitted a review in GWT, but perhaps the bigger issue here is how easy it was for Google to block access to so many popular sites at once. It’s something that will give rights-holders bad ideas, and perhaps it also point to the monopolistic position Google now finds themselves in (Google Search and Chrome are the most popular platforms in their respective fields) – too much power concentrated in one company, whether that power was intentionally procured or naturally gathered, is never a good thing.

Gaming

PS4 CUH-1200 APU

A new PS4 model is lighter, uses less power and is quieter too

There’s a new updated PS4 model currently available (only) in Japan, and a teardown has revealed some significant updates with the hardware. An updated processor (still a 28nm chip though), RAM and other chips means power savings, which also means a quieter, slower spinning fan. This greener, quieter PS4 still retains the old form factor, so it’s definitely not the “slim” edition that some are convinced will be released soon (and if anything, this model refresh means it’s now less likely that a slim version will be coming soon, not after Sony has put in the effort to design this new model – the slim version will require a much bigger re-design that what’s found here). Expect this new PS4 model to make it ways to the US and other Western markets soon (before Christmas, I bet).

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That’s it for this week. I’m going to go back and watch that Star Wars Comic-con video another 10 times. Oh yes. See you soon!

Weekly News Roundup (21 June 2015)

Sunday, June 21st, 2015

Well E3 came and went, and both Sony and Microsoft had some great announcements, even if some were definitely way overdue (*cough*, DLNA support, *cough*), and even if some took everyone completely by surprise (*cough*, Xbox 360 backwards compatibility, *cough* – I really need to get this cough looked at).

I think I might have just spoiled some of this week’s news stories. Better this than having a key plot development in the Game of Thrones season finale being spoiled mid-episode while I was searching for background info on Meryn Trant on my phone – thanks a lot Variety! Don’t worry, while we talk a lot about Game of Thrones in this WNR, there won’t be any spoilers.

Copyright

Jon Snow

Even Jon Snow knows that Game of Thrones season finale equals new piracy record

WTF? Those familiar with Game of Thrones will also be familiar with this expression, and the season 5 finale was no different. While some of the twists and turns on the show come totally unexpected for the unsuspecting viewer (when it comes to guessing what fate will befall the truly honorable citizens of Westeros, and there aren’t many of those left, we’ve become more and more cynical I think), what was a total non surprise was the fact that a new piracy record has been broken again for the season finale, a record that was last set only a couple of weeks ago by another GoT episode.

But it’s not so much a case of more people downloading, and less people paying – ratings for the show are at a record too – it’s just that the show has become so popular that piracy inevitably goes up (and given the way the season 5 finale ended, expect the season 6 premier to break a couple of more records again).

For HBO, they definitely can do more to convert at least a small group of downloaders into paying customers, first by lowering the price of HBO Now, and by making it possible to watch new episodes via streaming in other parts of the world without having to be tied to a cable service (either by making HBO Now available, or selling the license to local streaming platforms).

But even if they do that, a large portion of the viewing public will still be downloading. Just take a look at the piracy problem with Netflix’s Orange is the New Black, despite Netflix’s ubiquity and low entry point when it comes to pricing, some will still pirate (and that some includes many who already pay for Netflix, but want a way to watch these episodes offline). So piracy will never be eliminated, but HBO can definitely do more to convince those willing to pay, to pay something.

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Google DMCA Stats

Google is profiting from piracy, according to the MPAA

Google’s pretty mad these days. At Mississippi State Attorney General Jim Hood and his MPAA backers, mainly. The search giant is finally using some of its massive cash reserves to hire a lawyers or a hundred to punish the MPAA, via Hood, for trying to mess with them (Hood tried to build case against Google, with the MPAA’s help, in a very clumsy attempt to bring back SOPA like legislation on the state level – but the Sony hack revealed all, forcing Google to on the legal offensive).

With Google winning in the courts against Hood, the search giant then started to target the puppetmasters, and when the MPAA refused to hand over internal documents, Google sued them too. The MPAA has just responded to Google’s lawsuit, and they really didn’t hold anything back. The MPAA accuses Google of both helping to facilitate and also profiting from piracy, and says Google’s lawsuit is nothing but a PR campaign.

Interesting, the MPAA argues that Google is trying to make them look bad by making public Hollywood’s anti-piracy strategy. I’m glad the MPAA finally agrees that their anti-piracy strategy is naturally unpopular, and that the truth is all you need to make them look bad!

Gaming

PS4 Media Player

PS4 finally getting a proper media player, with USB, DLNA and MKV support

Both Sony and Microsoft have had a good E3 (as for Nintendo …), but among Sony’s big PS4 announcements, the one that’s most interesting to me and probably to readers here would be the announcement of a new, proper, media player, for the company’s flagship console. Finally, we get back DLNA playback and USB media support, and as a bonus, we also now get native MKV playback too.

Better late than never, I suppose. And I can finally seriously consider replacing my PS3 with the PS4 as my hub of all things entertaining.

For Microsoft, their big surprise announcement was not something new, but something old. Or rather, backwards compatibility to allow you to play your old Xbox 360 games on the Xbox One. Insert your old Xbox 360 game disc, the 360 emulator will load up and you’ll be able to instantly play one of the 100 titles that are supported currently. Backwards compatibility also works with digital purchases too.

Xbox One's Xbox 360 Backward Compatibility

Xbox One’s Xbox 360 emulator in action

Not just a great bonus for Xbox One owners, it’s also a smart move by Microsoft. They have the data that shows many 360 owners are moving to the PS4 when upgrading to the next gen – by adding BC, it will ensure at least some of these users will more favorably view the Xbox One, even if just as a way to keep on playing their Xbox 360 games without having to buy a new 360.

The move has certainly surprised rivals Sony (and pretty much everyone else), but there are currently no plans to give PS3 backwards compatibility to the PS4 according to the Japanese tech giant. If Xbox 360 backwards compatibility proves to be a winner, sales wise, expect Sony to miraculously unveil their BC plans post haste.

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Bloody hell, Variety, why did you have to put all the major plot of the finale in your headlines? To be honest, even after I read it, I couldn’t believe it, and I still can’t believe it after I’ve seen it (it seems a lot of people are like me, in denial). If this is all very cryptic, it is, because this is a good website that don’t spoil things for unspecting people. Unlike Variety.

See you next week!

Weekly News Roundup (14 June 2015)

Sunday, June 14th, 2015

Another week gone, and we’re mid way through June, which is mid-way through the year. 2015 has gone by pretty quickly, I have to say, maybe too quick at times. Much like this somewhat shorter than usual WNR, which I’m sure you’ll get through pretty quickly (maybe too quickly) too.

Here it is …

Copyright

EU Flag

The EU wants to remove copyright restrictions, which they say is encouraging piracy

The EU is pressing ahead with its plans reform copyright laws, to make it fairer to consumers and remove many of the restrictions that exist within EU countries. The European Commission VP in charge of this new copyright strategy, dubbed the Digital Single Market, says that current copyright laws allows rights-holders to place restrictions on legal content, restrictions that Andrus Ansip says are driving people to piracy.

Instead of tougher laws that punish downloaders, something that Ansip says is untenable (68% of film viewers in the EU download pirated movies – “to put 68% of people in jail is not really a good idea,” says Ansip), he wants legislation that encourages the spread of legal content, even if it means banning things like geo-blocking within EU countries.

It’s something rights-holders won’t like. While all EU countries use the same currency, the wealth disparity between EU countries means that citizens in one country may be able to afford to pay more for the same content, than citizens in another country. It’s this wealth disparity that Big Content likes to exploit, by making sure they squeeze as much as possible out of each paying customer. In the worst case, an entire platform, like Spotify, could end not not being available in some countries due to these kind of artificial barriers.

So while the EU is clearly moving into the direction that brings better access to content, Big Content is heading in the other direction, still pushing ahead with content blocking to solve the piracy problem. The latest strategy involves getting domain registrars involved in the process, but Big Content is finding that it’s meeting some resistance from ICANN, the non-profit responsible for managing domain names. The ICANN says it refuses to be copyright cops, to police content, simply because it’s responsibilities simply does not extend to content. Pointing domain names to servers is basically what the domain naming system is all about – it should not matter to ICANN at least what the domain name is, and what server it is pointing to. Just because it’s easier to force registrars to do something about piracy (as opposed to going after the owners of the website), doesn’t make it right.

Gaming

Steam logo

Are users abusing Steam’s new refund system?

By finally making refunds available, Steam seems to have finally listened to customers, and it also represents a major step in the right direction in terms of digital consumer rights. However, it appears some users at least have started to abuse the refund system, which promises refunds, no questions asked, within 14 days of purchase as long as you’ve played less than two hours in the game (which describes about 95% of my Steam game library, by the way).

Some indie game developers are reporting refund rates of up to 72%, meaning more than 2 in 3 users bought the game, played it, and then got their money back. While this might indicate some kind of problem with the game, most of the time, the heavily refunded games still receive positive ratings from gamers.

This means that people may be using the refund system to play games without paying, at least for up to two hours (which while probably not enough to finish the game, but might be enough for many users). With Steam not even asking users why they’re seeking a refund, the system does sound like one that’s maybe too biased towards the consumers, something that rarely happens with digital goods.

The problem has become so bad, that some developers are even thinking of adding DRM to their game, something that they would never have considered in the past. And this is a development that benefits nobody, really.

There has to be a middle ground though, one that gives consumers the same rights with digital goods as they have with physical goods, but also ensures that people cannot abuse it as a way to play games without paying.

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Xbox One PC Adapter

PC Adapter for Xbox One controller finally available, getting ready for Windows 10 game streaming

The NPD report for US video game sales in May has been released, and the PS4 is back on top after temporarily handing over the crown to the Xbox One in April. While Xbox One sales were up on this time last year, it just couldn’t sell enough units to beat the PS4, which but for a few months here and there (admittedly during some important months, such as during the holiday sales period), has been on top pretty much this entire generation.

Things might stay the same in June again though, despite Microsoft releasing a new 1 TB version of the console (and permanently dropping the price of the 512 GB version to $349). What may have a slightly bigger effect on Xbox One sales, eventually, might happen after the release of Windows 10. With built-in game streaming support (with the ability to stream Xbox One games to any Windows 10 device, be it your PC, laptop or Surface tablet), the new operating system from Microsoft will aim to further unify the Windows and Xbox platforms. So the release of a wireless PC adapter for the Xbox One controller comes just at the right time.

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Alright, that’s that for the week. Have a good one!

Weekly News Roundup (7 June 2015)

Sunday, June 7th, 2015

I never thought I would see unskippable ads and auto-play promos on Netflix, but that’s exactly what I saw this week. I’ve never really understood why networks still need to advertise themselves, especially for established shows like Orange is the New Black. It feels like preaching to the converted, as the only people who don’t know about Orange is the New Black are people who just don’t want to watch it, and no amount of advertising is going to change that fact.

Not a huge amount of news this week, but still a few interesting ones, including the one about Netflix ads.

Copyright

Piracy is Stealing?

Piracy is helpful to Netflix, while using VPNs to access it is stealing according media boss

There is now a greater acceptance of the view that regardless of you think should be done about piracy, it is here and it is something that cannot be ignored or simply maginalised (as something done by “criminals”). Instead of trying to eliminate it completely, the reality is that piracy is here to stay, and that it is just like any other market force that needs to be accounted for. New tech companies like Netflix and Spotify have long realised this paradigm, and have made their services competitive as a result – traditional firms like most Hollywood studios and recording labels, have not, and has suffered as a result.

But according to Netflix, it’s just not about competing with piracy – it’s also about using piracy to its advantage. According to Netflix boss Reed Hastings, piracy teaches users to get used to streaming videos online, which makes it easier for Netflix to convince these same users to sign up. These users are already likely to have high bandwidth or unlimited bandwidth accounts, which makes it one less hurdle for them to make the switch to Netflix.

It’s this kind of positive thinking and willingness to adapt that’s behind the success of companies like Netflix and Hulu. Those that don’t want to accept the paradigm shift, and instead uses technological and legal solutions to maintain the status quo, are the ones that will ultimately lose out in the end.

Interestingly, Hastings also explains why when Netflix comes to a new country (such as Australia), it’s catalogue of titles is so crap. Apparently, it’s easier to negotiate for content only if that region’s Netflix has a high number of subscribers. I don’t know who made this particular hoop for Netflix to jump through, but it just goes to show the problems associated with the current licensing regime (too expensive, too restrictive, and too convoluted).

VPNReactor

Is using a VPN to access US Netflix in Canada that much different to shopping at Amazon.com instead of Amazon.ca?

It’s these convoluted hoops that ensures one region’s Netflix is better or worse than another region’s, despite there being perhaps very little geographical distance between the two regions. Let’s say between Canada and the US (or between Toronto and Detroit). This kind of content inequality has made many Canadian Netflix users sign up to VPN or smart DNS services so they can access the US Netflix library, which features much more content (although personally I find that Canada has better movie releases, sometimes), including the daughter of new Canadian Bell Media boss Mary Ann Turcke.

But instead of seeing the content inequality as a problem (and perhaps as an opportunity as well), Turcke, the boss of an old media firm, sees this as “theft” and, on a personal note, has put a stop to her daughter’s “stealing”. And in Turcke’s mind, the solution is to not adapt to what users want, but instead, to tell those users they’re wrong, they’re criminals, and that what they’re doing is “unacceptable” – users including her own daughter!

With this kind of mindset, it’s no wonder old media has been so unsuccessful at adapting to user demands in the Internet age, and why they have allowed innovative companies like Apple, Netflix and Spotify to take over core parts of their business. When you see “new” as “bad”, then this is the inevitable outcome.

High Definition

Meanwhile, do not be concerned that Netflix has started showing ads. It’s only ads for its own original shows, but they’re unskippable (at least the one I saw, for Orange is the New Black), and the worry is that this will be expanded one day to include third-party ads. Netflix has been quick to reassure users that this won’t be the case, but Netflix ads or third party ones, they’re all annoying, especially if they’re unskippable.

Hopefully, this will be one of those things that Netflix test from time to time, but never makes it as a regular feature, especially if most users are like me and don’t view these changes favourably.

Gaming

PS4 with controller and PS Eye

The new PS4 models should look pretty much like the old ones, but only on the outside

A new PS4 model with a 1TB hard-drive may be available sometime this year, and may be announced as soon as E3 in two week’s time. But the new PS4 won’t be the much anticipated “slim” model, as the FCC filings which revealed the new PS4 models show that dimensions of the console has remained the same.

What has changed however is the power requirement, from 250 watts to 230 watts, suggesting that new fabrication process for the PS4 hardware is now ready, which may lead to a price cut too.

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That’s it for another week, hope you enjoyed this one. See you in seven!