DigitalOutbox Episode 88
In this episode the team discuss WWDC, Windows 8, E3 and the most damaging DM mistake ever.
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1:41 – Windows 8 Revealed
– Appears to be a rethink of what Windows is
– Tiles similar to Windows Phone (Metro) are viewed – bigger so can show more
– Touch based OS – does look very nice
– Can go back to ‘traditional’ windows – almost jarring moving between the two environments
– When in windows the touch Metro environment feels like a skin on top – like a dashboard?
– Too early to tell how good this will be
6:52 – Facebook launch face scanning
– Facebook has apologised for the way it rolled-out a new system that recognises users’ faces. The social network said that it should have done more to notify members about the global launch.
Its Tag Suggestions feature scans photos and automatically picks out existing friends.
– Although users have the option to switch it off, some complained that they were not explicitly asked if they wanted it activated.
Facebook said that the system was intended to speed up the process of assigning a name to a picture, known as tagging.
– It was introduced in the US in December 2010 but has only now been launched globally.
9:37 – WWDC
– 10 new features that were known already
– App Store only, July, £20.99, 4GB download for Snow Leopard
– 200 new features overall
– App Store updates
– For enhanced security, apps will have a built-in sandbox mode whilst developers will have the ability to send “delta updates”, which are effectively ‘patch based’ updates, meaning the entire app will not have to re-downloaded with every update.Apps will also be able to send push notifications to users and just like iOS apps, can also have in-app purchases
Lots of their new features were really refinements (as always with Apple!). Nice to see development, just seems that the desktop PC is now rather an after-thought…
Full screen apps – finally a way to maximise an app on OSX 🙂
– iOS 5
– 1. Notifications: no more interruptions. Notifications will appear like Android . SLide your finger across the notification and you will go to the app. More information will be visible form the Home screen. You can also click on the X to lea all the notifications.
Quick Android, sue Apple for copying 🙂
2. Newsstand: Newsstand is the place for all your Magazine and newspaper subscriptions. On the iPad, this app will let you read, listen to audio and video as well. Each edition is automatically downloaded to your device.
3. Twitter: Twitter is not integrated into iOS. SIngle sign-on is integrated into the settings and you won’t have to login in for every app. It’s also integrated with Camera and photos so you can upload with a few clicks. Location and thumbnails are also included. As expected, the Twitter integration taps into your contacts.
4. Safari: Safari is the most popular web browser of all time and the basis of 90% of mobile browsing. Apple introduced Safari Reader which will bring an articles content into one page and lets you email the content of the article or tweet about it. Includes full tabbed browsing in Safari on the iPad.
Will be interesting to see how advert driven websites react to this feature! There are tools available already (as covered by Ian in his picks) but this will bring to the masses an ability to cut off revenue streams for site owners!
5. Reminders: Reminders does exactly what it says — remind you od al the important things you need to do. Includes location information and can remind you when you arrive and leave an event. Searchable and will sync with iCal.
6. Camera: The Camera app got a refresh with a new Camera shortcut on the lock screen (yay!). Double-click the home button and the camera app will launch. Will let you take a new picture even if you have a passcode set. You can use the volume up button as a snap for the camera and grid lines to help frame your photos. You can even pinch-to-zoom and set AE/AF lock without losing your previous settings. . Built-in editor will let you crop, rotate, reduce red-eye and more.
After months of stopping hardware buttons for shutter, finally they relent! Feel sorry for those apps that got the chop because of doing just that.
7. Mail: Mail also gets some fresh new features including full text searching, rich text formatting, and flagging. Swipe to add an inbox and new enterprise features that add support for S/MIME. New dictionary will help with your definitions. A new split keyboard will make typing text easier.
8. PC Free: Cut the cord. PC Free gives you the ability to setup and activate your brand new iPhone right on the handset. Software updates are now over the air (double-yay!), even minor patches and little changes like add/delete calendars and add/remove mailboxes can be done from the handset.
9. Game Center: Game Center now includes photos with the profiles, game recommendations, achievement point comparisons. You can also purchase games right through the game center. Support for turn-based games is now added into iOS so games like Scrabble will be easier to build.
10. iMessage: A new messaging service just for iOS 5 owners. It’s BBM for iOS! You can send text, photos, videos contacts, group messaging, delivery receipts and more. iMessages are pushed to all iOS device and it works over 3G and WiFi. And its all encrypted!
– Airplay mirroring – does that mean any app will mirror over Airplay without the app having to support it – thats massive for home and corporate environments
– Many app developers will be feeling the pinch – Instapaper, Camera+, ToDo apps, Messaging apps
– After all the previewed features and great news about iOS 5 (OTA updates, wireless sync, new apps, iMessage), Apple confirmed that iOS 5 will ship this Fall (perhaps with a new iPhone?), with a first developer seed available later today. The best part? Just like iOS 4, iOS 5 will run on your iPhone 4 and iPhone 3GS (unlike a previous report claimed, 3GS is supported), iPad and iPad 2, iPod touch 3rd and 4th gen
If you have an app in the areas where Apple has now “baked in” functionality, you’ll be cursing at the moment! Always a risk for developers who come up with a great idea.
– iCloud integrates with a number of apps on both iOS devices and Macs to sync content like pictures, documents, and music between devices, and will provide 5GB of storage free to all users.
– iCloud can wirelessly push content to all the listed devices automatically and integrate with apps like Contacts, Mail, and iCal that were all previously handled by Apple’s old cloud service, MobileMe. Jobs said these apps have been “rebuilt from the ground up” to be iCloud apps.
– The iCloud version of iCal includes calendar sharing, so that an update to a calendar is not only pushed to all of a user’s own devices, but to those who subscribe to the calendar as well. In e-mail, @me.com addresses can sync mail between all devices.
– Jobs also announced a few newly iCloud-optimized apps. Integration with the App Store allows users to see a purchase history of all of their apps and pull one down to a device if they need it, as long as it’s compatible. A newly bought app can be automatically pushed to all devices. Likewise, new books and their bookmarks in iBooks can be auto-synced to all devices, and new Pages document will automatically be backed up to the service, then pushed to all other Pages-enabled devices.
– Another feature, called PhotoStream, pulls images directly from the camera roll of a user’s device, puts them in the cloud, and sends them to any desired devices, including Macs and the Apple TV. The last 1,000 photos are kept for 30 days by default, and moving the pictures to an album keeps them forever.
– iTunes was also primed for iCloud, and lets users pull down songs or albums purchased through the iTunes Store from their purchase history to the device they are using. Jobs noted there is a “switch” where users can tell iCloud to sync all songs bought on any device to up to 10 authorized devices.
– Jobs also described a new feature called iTunes Match, which attempts to match up songs in a user’s library with what is available in the iTunes Store. If a song can be matched, a customer will have access to it via iCloud without having to upload it, though they will be able to upload songs they already own as well. The service has no data caps, but costs $24.99 per year. So Apple’s basically betting you’ll pay $25 a year to legalize all your content, and for the convenience of having it with you everywhere
– Similar to HP’s webOS, iCloud will also allow iOS devices to complete automatic daily backups of your devices to the cloud.
– Jobs said little about how users will control the actions of iCloud (other than through iTunes), which is relevant to those concerned about data usage limits. During a demo, Roger Rosner, VP of iWork, indicated that when he wanted to access a Keynote presentation on his iPad from his iPhone, he first had to give consent for the phone to use the iCloud service.
– APIs for iCloud storage and a beta version will be available to developers starting today, and device owners running iOS 4.3 will also get access to a beta version of iTunes in the cloud. The full version of iCloud will be available with iOS 5, which is due out this fall. Jobs announced that 5GB of storage will be available free to all users for mail, documents, and backup, with the PhotoStream service operating outside that limit.
Another case of end to end control helping Apple to make a service that, in theory, ‘just works’. Extremely impressive stuff – not because we haven’t seen it before, just because it’s so completely realised. The data-centre was impressive!
However, what about people with low/limited upload speeds… Pictures and songs are large beasts and the data-centre is in the US after all. I’m sure they’ve thought about it and if anyone can pull it off, Apple can.
Their push towards delta updates on everything was also evidence that they are on the case.
How long before EU/Competitions commissions start getting involved? We’re talking features and functionality that you don’t have any options over – iCloud as a service for example. Microsoft are still suffering from having to open up their operating system to competition. Will this appen to Apple as well? I don’t think it’s that far away.
56:32 – FT bypass the Apple Tax
– The Financial Times would rather not have Apple take a 30 percent cut of in-app subscriptions for its iOS publications, and has launched a HTML5 Web app that enables readers to access content across tablets and smartphones.
– The browser app enables readers to access content when offline by saving a shortcut to articles, receive automatic updates without the need to download new versions of the app and access content exclusively made for tablets.
– An upcoming feature is ‘Clippings’, a service that will allow users to read articles later, either on their tablet or on their desktop PC. Sound familiar? (look for ‘reading list’)
– FT acknowledges that the Web app has been initially optimized for the iPhone and the iPad, but says it will also be adapted for Android-based devices and the BlackBerry PlayBook.
– Accessing FT content is free for up to ten articles per month, if you register.
– Performance – pretty poor
What have I been bleating on about? Yep, the future is web-based services. Not apps.
1:02:39 – Microsoft Keynote
– Kinect dominated
– Ghost Recon:Future Warrior – kinect gesture and voice support, as will all future Tom Clancy games
– New dashboard this fall, kinect powered, metro’ish design, Bing and Youtube channels controlled by voice
– Bing allows you to search across Xbox content
– TV channel in the Fall – US only?
– Halo:Combat Evolved – Nov 15th – 10 year anniversary – HD graphics, co-op, multiplayer maps as well but you need Halo Reach to play multiplayer – 6 maps – no multiplayer with Halo:CE apart from co-op
– Fable: The Journey – first person journeying via kinect
– Minecraft coming to 360 this winter…with kinect support
– Forza 4 – October 11th – head tracking via kinect, new community features – not much else revealed
– Kinect Fun Labs, Disneyland – Wiitastic games coming to kinect
– Kinect sports 2, Dance Central 2
– Halo 4 – end of 2012 – new 3 parter
– Buried – Cloud storage for game saves and profiles – sign in anywhere to any console
Kinect seems to = games on rails… not exactly the future of gaming as I see it.
Mind you, all the games shows seemed to have massive amounts of “watching” the game rather than actually “playing” it.
1:11:44 – Sony Keynote
– Apologise for outage and hack
– Ico and Shadow of the Colossus to launch September 28
– A TV. And some 3D glasses. Available in one $499 bundle this fall, the 3D-enabled 24-inch television includes a pair of PlayStation-branded 3D glasses (extra glasses are available for $69.99 separately), a six foot HDMI cable and a copy of Resistance 3. Best of all, the screen includes some clever technology which allows two players looking at the display at two different angles to see separate images, effectively eschewing traditional split-screen multiplayer.
– Resistance 3 – September 6
– Dust 514 – spring/summer 2012
– When playing your FPS title of choice, have you ever wished that there was something more to it beyond your rank, weapon unlocks, your kill/death ratio and leaderboard prominence? Those things are all great – but what if those matches you fought in actually meant something? What if your successes and failures against your opponents impacted the course of events in a vast setting, potentially changed a virtual world and the gameplay experience of thousands of other players? More than that, what if that impact was felt across two separate games – one on PS3 and one on PC/Mac – that share the same sci-fi universe?
DUST 514 is that game.
– “Persistence” is the key word here. The world of DUST 514 doesn’t spawn when you fire up your PlayStation 3 — it’s always there and always being experienced and influenced by other players in the EVE universe. When you take part in events in the EVE universe through combat in DUST 514, you’re taking part in something greater than your own individual experience of that world.
– Your fights impact the entire EVE setting, comprised of both DUST 514 mercenaries and EVE Online starship pilots, known as “capsuleers“. When you capture or destroy planetary structures, you are asserting dominance over regions of that planet – perhaps eventually the planet itself. As you profit while wiping out your opposition in DUST 514, the outcomes of these conflicts can affect territorial control of vast regions of space in EVE Online, something of great importance to EVE’s starship pilots.
– Uncharted in september – looks really good
– Sony announce slew of games with Move support
– Saints Row:The Third with move – Nov 15th
– NGP is Playstation Vita
– The NGP PlayStation Vita will feature both Wi-Fi and 3G functionality, with AT&T being named the official wireless carrier of the new handheld. Audible groan and boo’s when AT&T announced. front and rear cams, Wi-Fi with optional 3G, a 5-inch AMOLED display, and touchpads on both sides
– As for pricing, the Wi-Fi model will retail for $249, while the 3G/Wi-Fi model will retail for $299 (£229 and £279)
– Launched globally by the end of 2011
– Streetfighter x Tekken a launch title as is Wipeout, Modnation Racers…and of course Ridge Racer
– This is my next hands on
– It’s big. Certainly not very pocket friendly, but not comical. It’s a pretty reasonable size given the fully articulated analog controls and all the other wild stuff going on here. Still, it’s big if you’re used to doing your gaming on a phone or even a recent PSP.
It’s light. Vita actually feels hollow. It’s a little bizarre given the fact that we’re looking at a seriously large display, and takes some getting used to. We’re happy to report, however, that this is some seriously quality craftsmanship. The see-through plastic triggers are big, meaty, and have a whole bunch of finely crafted travel.
The “cheapest” feeling part is probably the back touchscreen. It kind of feels (and looks) like a plastic sticker, and it actually made some tasks requiring rear touch a little sub-par feeling. We’d prefer something a bit more like brushed glass.
This screen is AMAZING. Not only is it amazing in size, color, and resolution, but the games are actually pumping enough pixels to look wonderful on it. Virtua Tennis was especially spectacular, with oodles of polygons available for every nuance of Federer’s face.
The analog sticks are good, but not DualShock or Xbox 360 controller good. We got through most gaming tasks fine, but shooting in Uncharted felt a little sloppy. Of course, there’s always a bit of a learning curve with a new shooter and a new analog stick, so we’re willing to give this one time.
1:18:48 – Nintendo Keynote
– The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword will arrive on Wii during Holiday 2011
– 25th anniversary of The Legend of Zelda. Part of the celebration, as announced by Shigeru Miyamoto, includes the release The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening on the 3DS eShop. And by “release,” we mean that the classic Game Boy title is actually available today.
– Luigi’s Mansion 2 officially announced for 3DS
– Super Mario 3D, the 3DS title briefly teased back at GDC, would launch before year’s end.
– Mario Kart for 3DS – winter
– Starfox 64 for 3DS this fall
– Nintendo Wii U
– The controller features a large, touch-capable screen, paired with two circle pads, a directional pad, face buttons, a camera, a gyroscope and an accelerometer. Nintendo is positioning it as an entertainment sharing device, with video and gameplay working across the controller and your home console.
– You can play games solely on the controller, which handles like a tablet and presumably includes the stylus we saw interacting with it during the reveal. It’s got a 6.2 inch screen, is backward compatible with all Wii games, Wii Remotes and other accessories — a video showed showed it being used with the Balance Board and as a Wii Remote, so it’s got motion controls built in. An example during the reveal showed an individual using it in a golf game, just like a Wiimote.
– It’s got rumble, trigger buttons, touch-screen, microphone and speakers, and an accelerometer. It’s also got a camera built in. Iwata says it’s got support for the “widest variety of games can be supported” and can play games independently of the Wii itself. Oh, and it’s HD.
– Expected 2012
– No games demo’d, just rolling montages – from 360 and PS3 versions of the games
– 1.8 inches tall, 6.8 inches wide, 10.5 inches long
The new controller incorporates a 6.2-inch, 16:9 touch screen and traditional button controls, including two analog Circle Pads. This combination removes the traditional barriers between games, players and the TV by creating a second window into the video game world. The rechargeable controller includes a Power button, Home button, +Control Pad, A/B/X/Y buttons, L/R buttons and ZL/ZR buttons. It includes a built-in accelerometer and gyroscope, rumble feature, camera, a microphone, stereo speakers, a sensor strip and a stylus
Up to four Wii Remote (or Wii Remote Plus) controllers can be connected at once. The new console supports all Wii controllers and input devices, including the Nunchuk controller, Classic Controller, Classic Controller Pro and Wii Balance Board
A single self-loading media bay will play 12-centimeter proprietary high-density optical discs for the new console, as well as 12-centimeter Wii optical discs
Supports 1080p, 1080i, 720p, 480p and 480i. Compatible cables include HDMI, component, S-video and composite
Uses AV Multi Out connector. Six-channel PCM linear output through HDMI
The console will have internal flash memory, as well as the option to expand its memory using either an SD memory card or an external USB hard disk drive
IBM Power®-based multi-core microprocessor
Four USB 2.0 connector slots are included. The new console is backward compatible with Wii games and Wii accessories
1:24:31 – E3 News
– Mass Effect 3 – Mar 6th 2012
– Battlefield 3 – October 25th
– A new social client for FIFA gamers launching with FIFA 12, known as “Football Club”. The service is said to track “status, bragging rights and progression,” allowing players to access their cross-game stats from FIFA titles. Think Bungie Pro or Call of Duty Elite, but, ya know, without the paid part. Thats right — it’s free! Football Club will launch with FIFA 12 this fall
– Tomb Raider – 2012, reimagined in some ways but classic Tomb Raider in many others
– On-Live hits the UK Q3 2011
– After a successful first year in the US, cloud-based game service OnLive is finally heading to the UK this autumn.
– Customers with fast internet connections will be able to stream games such as Borderlands and Prince of Persia straight to their computer or TV set, no download required.
– OnLive’s UK page now shows a countdown set to end June 7 at 8pm. Sign up then and you’ll be given an OnLive UK Founding Member account for early access.
– OnLive will launch in the UK in collaboration with BT
– iPad client also launching in the Autumn
1:28:38 – Finally – most damaging DM mistake yet?
– Rep. Anthony Weiner has confessed at a press conference that he sent via Twitter the picture that has captivated Washington for the past week — and that he lied about his account being hacked.
– “I regret not being honest about this,” Weiner said in a tearful statement. “I was embarrassed, I was humiliated. I was trying to protect my wife. I was trying to protect myself from shame.”
– He claimed to have tweeted the picture on May 27 to Seattle student Gennette Cordova “as a joke” but then “panicked” and removed the tweet from his Twitter account. Cordova, however, doesn’t understand what joke that would be. “Am I the only one still confused?” she tweeted during the press conference.
– “Once I realized I had posted it on Twitter I panicked, I took it down and said I’d been hacked,” Weiner explained.
– Weiner said he has had “cursory direct message contact” with Cordova and that she was not one of the women he was having an online relationship with.