Reports are flooding in that Microsoft has begun rolling out SystemUpdate version 2.0.15572.0 (Summer 2012 Production Flash). There are no immediate official details from MS regarding it yet, but an announcement from Major Nelson is likely forthcoming. The update is being deployed in waves, so if you haven’t received it yet, give it some time and you’ll eventually be prompted for it. So far, users who have updated are reporting no adverse effects (on the surface) as far as firmware-flashed 360s are concerned. The team will take a closer look and analyze whether there are any important underlying changes that affect firmware or RGH. Our usual warnings apply.
After months of leaks and industry speculation, Sony will tonight unveil its next generation games machine. The PlayStation maker has called the world’s media to an exclusive pow-wow in New York Some Controller Prototype images: What we (think we) know: Likely to be released around November May launch at a cost of £300, £125 cheaper …View full post
Website vgleaks.com is claiming a world-wide exclusive by revealing the full spec for the upcoming next-generation Xbox, codenamed Durango. While there is obviously no official substantiation for the information posted, key elements of the spec match the overall outline of the hardware we have received from trusted sources and the leaker has come forward with proof about the origins …View full post
Microsoft’s released the first Forza Horizon trailer and confirmed the racing spin-off will be out on October 23, 2012.
The video shows sports cars doing your usual selection of flashy drifting moves and high-speed fly-bys in a huge massive variety of environments from suburban towns to canyon runs.
Adds six new achievements and new game modes
During the course of May, there will actually be two content updates. The first of which will be free to all Xbox 360 users arrives on May 15th, and will include two new multiplayer maps specifically made for the new “Face Off” game mode. The new mode will see all the intensity of traditional Call of Duty multiplayer, but scaled down into much smaller, closer environments to support 1 vs.1 and 2 vs. 2 combat.
Make your way through Mediterranean ruins and ancient aqueducts, using leftover Roman masonry for thousand-year-old cover in this new “Face Off” map.
Head to Scotland’s Orkney Islands for the latest “Face Off” map, where treacherous cliff faces, networks of caves and the rusted and ruined remains of a grounded transport ship provide for constant combat.
Two more new maps will follow on May 22nd as part of the Collection 2 DLC. “Gateway”, set in a beach side mansion in Brazil and “Lookout” which is set in an observation post in “Afghanistan”.
In addition to the two new maps above, the pack will also include three multiplayer maps, two of which were already released to Call of Duty: Elite subscribers – “Sanctuary” and “Foundation” – along with one new map titled “Oasis” which is set on a beach resort in the United Arab Emirates.
It’s actually in or near one of the levels from single player – the one that takes place in UAE. You can see part of that level in the background in this level. It’s all new geo but it’s in the same area
As if that wasn’t enough, the pack will also include two new Spec Ops missions (this is where it gets interesting for achievement hunters), “Iron Clad” and “Killswitch”.
With one player helming a tank and the other escorting it on foot, you’ll clear beaches and take cover in plane wreckage as you escape Hamburg from behind enemy lines in this all-new Special Ops Mission.
Armed with an Electromagnetic Pulse, your sniper team must neutralize a Russian carrier in this Special Ops Mission where only a bird’s eye view can keep your team in command as you breach the ship from underwater.
No price has yet been announced for the “Collection 2″ DLC at the moment, but you can expect it to be 1200 MSP, the same as Collection 1.
Samsung Galaxy S III is official: 4.8-inch HD Super AMOLED display, quad-core Exynos processor and gesture functions
The Galaxy S III is Samsung’s new flagship smartphone and it’s finally broken cover at the company’s stand-alone Mobile Unpacked event here in London. With a steady stream of fakes, outright leaks and even event rescheduling, Samsung’s claimed almost crazy levels of interest for its new smartphone. Weighing in at 133g (4.7 ounces) and whittled to 8.6mm at its thickest, the rounded-off design has more than a little bit in common with its Galaxy Nexus cousin. Of course, it’s Samsung’s new 1.4GHz Exynos 4 Quad processor doing the legwork, and there’s 1GB of RAM to help it out. The display has been bumped up in size to a 4.8-inch HD Super AMOLED affair, sporting a 1280 x 720 pixel count. Happy snappers will have an 8-megapixel rear shooter to play with, and a 1.9-megapixel eye on the front will take care of those video calls. If you were wondering about radios, it’s launching with HSPA+, but there’s an LTE version in the cards. As for the interface, it’s TouchWiz on top of Android 4.0 again, and there’s new gesture functions to help you get around. So, there it is, the phone we’ve all been waiting for (until the next one) but that’s not all, be sure to check our hands-on coverage and additional features for the in-depth breakdown.
A quick video of the Xbox 360 ‘reset glitch hack’
Intel is launching its Ivy Bridge family of processors – the first to feature what it describes as a “3D transistor”.
The American firm says the innovation allows it to offer more computational power while using less energy.
The initial release includes 13 quad-core processors, most of which will be targeted at desktop computers.
Further dual core processors, suitable for ultrabooks – thin laptops – will be announced “later this spring”.
Intel and PC manufacturers expect the release to drive a wave of new sales.
“The momentum around the system design is pretty astonishing,” Intel’s PC business chief, Kirk Skaugen, who is spearheading the launch, told the BBC.
“There are more than 300 mobile products in development and more than 270 different desktops, many of which are all-in-one designs.
“This is the world’s first 22 nanometre product and we’ll be delivering about 20% more processor performance using 20% less average power.”
The firm has already built three factories to fabricate the new chips and a fourth will come online later this year.
“This is Intel’s fastest ramp ever,” Mr Skaugen added.
“There will be 50% more supply than we had early in the product cycle of our last generation, Sandy Bridge, a year ago. And we’re still constrained based on the amount of demand we’re seeing in the marketplace.”
The fact that Intel’s new transistor technology – the on/off switches at the heart of its chips – are more power-efficient could be crucial to its future success.
To date it has been largely shut out of the smartphone and tablet markets, where devices are most commonly powered by chips based on designs by Britain’s Arm Holdings.
Arm now threatens to encroach on Intel’s core market with the release of Windows 8 later this year.
Microsoft has decided to let one variant of its operating system work on Arm’s architecture, paving the way for manufacturers to build laptops targeted at users who prioritise battery life over processing speeds.
Intel hopes a new transistor technology, in development for 11 years, will help it challenge Arm’s reputation for energy efficiency.
Bell Labs created the first transistor in 1947, and it was about a quarter of the size of an American penny.
Since then, engineers have radically shrunk them in size – so there are now more than one billion fitted inside a single processor.
Moore’s law – named after Intel’s co-founder Gordon Moore – stated that the number of transistors that could be placed on an integrated circuit should double roughly every two years without a big leap in cost.
However, transistors had become so small that there were fears they would become unreliable if they were shrunk much further.
Intel’s 3D tri-gate transistors
Traditionally transistors have used “flat” planar gates designed to switch on and off as quickly as possible, letting the maximum amount of current flow when they are switched on, and minimum when they are switched off.
The transistors gates in Ivy Bridge chips are just 22nm long (1nm = 1 billionth of a metre), meaning you could fit more than 4,000 of them across the width of a human hair.
Intel plans to incorporate 14nm transistors by 2013 and 10nm by 2015.
The problem is that the smaller that planar gates become, the more energy leakage occurs unless their switching speed is compromised.
Intel’s solution has been to make the transistors “3D” – replacing the “2D” gates with super-thin fins that rise up from the silicon base. Three gates are wrapped around each fin – two on each side and the other across the top.
There are several advantages beyond the fact that more transistors can be packed into the same space.
- Current leakage is reduced to near zero while the gates can still switch on and off more than 100 billion times per second.
- Less power is needed to carry out the same action.
- The innovation only adds 2-3% to the cost of making a chip.
“A lot of people had thought that Moore’s law was coming to an end,” said Mr Skaugen.
“What Intel has been able to do is instead of just shrinking the transistor in two dimensions, we have been able to create a three-dimensional transistor for the first time.
“For the user, that means the benefits of better performance and energy use will continue for as far as Intel sees on the road map.”
Mr Skaugen said that those who use the integrated GPU (graphics processing unit) on the chips, rather than a separate graphics card, would see some of the biggest gains.
He said the processing speed had been significantly boosted since Sandy Bridge, meaning devices would be capable of handling high-definition video conferences and the 4K resolution offered by top-end video cameras.
The GPU’s transcoding rate also benefits from the upgrade, allowing users to recode video more quickly if they want to send clips via email or put them on a smartphone.
The chips also offer new hardware-based security facilities as well as built-in USB 3.0 support. This should make it cheaper for manufacturers to offer the standard which allows quicker data transfers to hard disks, cameras and other peripherals.
It all poses quite a challenge to Intel’s main competitor in the PC processor market – Advanced Micro Devices.
AMD plans to reduce the amount of power its upcoming Piledriver chips consume by using “resonant clock mesh technology” – a new process which recycles the energy used by the processor. However, full details about how it will work and a release date are yet to be announced.
One industry analyst told the BBC that Intel was expected to retain its lead.
“AMD did briefly nudge ahead of Intel in the consumer space in the early 2000s at the time of Windows XP, but since then Intel has been putting in double shifts to break away from its rival,” said Chris Green, principal technology analyst at the consultants Davies Murphy Group Europe.
“Intel is making leaps ahead using proven technology, while AMD is trying to use drawing board stuff. So there’s less certainty AMD will succeed, and PC manufacturers may not want to adopt its technology in any volume, at least initially.”
As advanced as Ivy Bridge sounds, the one thing it is not is future-proof. Intel has already begun to discuss its successor, dubbed Haswell.
“We are targeting 20 times better battery life on standby – always on, always connected,” Mr Skaugen said about the update, due for release in 2013.
“So you can get all your files and emails downloaded onto your PC while it’s in your bag, and still get more than 10 days of standby and all-day battery life.”
For those with Intel-compatible machines, the OS will be available in two versions – Windows 8 and Windows 8 Pro.
And for those with devices, largely tablets, powered by ARM-designed chips there will be a Windows RT version.
Microsoft wants to simplify how it markets Windows 8, which is expected to launch in autumn 2012.
The complex flavours of past Windows – from basic to home, premium to ultimate – have become something of a joke among tech experts.
Microsoft has called Windows 8 the most significant redesign of the Windows interface since its groundbreaking Windows 95 OS.
The ARM version of the OS is the newest edition and reflects Microsoft’s desire to unify the engine known for running desktop computers with that for tablets and smartphones. Windows RT will sit alongside Apple’s iOS and Google’s Android operating systems.
It announced the new flavours on its Windows blog.
Many of those reacting to the announcement were unimpressed by the name for its ARM version.
“You guys are doing a phenomenal job with Windows Phone, Windows 8, etc, which makes the naming of ‘Windows RT’ all the more maddening. You’re trying to simplify the rest of the ‘Windows Live’ properties, which I applaud, but then you go with Windows RT? Does. not. compute,” said Michael Jenke, summing up the views of many responses to the blog.
In an earlier 8,600-plus word blog post Windows president Steven Sinofsky detailed the “energising and daunting”challenges in developing Windows on ARM.
A preview version of Windows 8 launched late last year and more than 100,000 changes had been made since the developer version went public.
For the first time since its inception, the trademark Windows “Start” button will no longer appear – instead being replaced by a sliding panel-based menu.
In a footnote in its blog, Microsoft said that there would be an adapted version of Windows 8 Pro for businesses.
SOURCE: BBC News
Tekken Tag Tournament 2 will launch on PS3 and 360 in September with new characters and features beyond the arcade version, Namco Bandai confirmed today.
Producer Katsuhiro Harada announced the news at the Namco Bandai press conference today, confirming that the console version will arrive with new characters in addition to the 44 already in the arcade version of the game, but refrained from revealing any names.
Emphasising that the console version is far from a port, Harada said it will include new modes such as one-on-one, two-on-one, and two-on-two matches, along with a new ‘Fight Lab’ mode that will serve as a practicing ground for both beginners and advanced players with customisable bots.
The September date narrows things down from the previous ‘holiday’ window that was confirmed by Namco’s most recent trailer for the game.
[ Source: Siliconera ]
Here’s a new trailer for Trial Evolution. The stunt-filled sequel offers plenty in the way of features, including 60 solo tracks, ten crazy-looking skill games, earn and customise options, plus local and online multiplayer modes.
Developed by RedLynx, the Xbox Live Arcade title’s set for release on April 18 for 1200 Microsoft Points (£10.28).