Xbox

Windows 10 is a free upgrade for all Windows 7 and 8.1 users

Windows 10 will be free

Windows 10 is a free upgrade for all Windows 7 and 8.1 users.


Wondering how much Windows 10 will set you back? In most cases, more or less nothing. Microsoft has announced that the new operating system will be a free upgrade in the first year for everyone using Windows 7, Windows 8.1 or Windows Phone 8.1. The company sees Windows as a service rather than a product, Terry Myerson explains.

Microsoft is partly following in Apple’s footsteps (OS X upgrades have been free since Mavericks), but can you really complain about getting a big update for free?

Joe Belfiore demonstrated Cortana, which Microsoft announced it has added to the PC

Joe Belfiore demonstrated Cortana, which Microsoft announced it has added to the PC.


Windows 10 brings the same operating system to devices of all sizes, rather than having different ones for PCs/tablets, mobile phones and the firm’s Xbox games console.

One of the features highlighted at the presentation was how Cortana – the voice-controlled digital assistant previously limited to Windows Phone handsets – would now work on PCs.

Cross-device multiplayer gaming, Game DVR & more. The @Xbox experience is coming to #Windows10.

Cross-device multiplayer gaming, Game DVR & more. The @Xbox experience is coming to #Windows10.

Microsoft is currently live with Windows 10 Briefing: Watch the live event here.

Apple set to buy Kinect technology for £185m

xBox Kinect

Microsoft xBox 360 – Kinect

Apple is set to drop £185m on Kinect-style technology, according to new reports.

Calcalist reports Apple is prepared to fork out $280 (£185) million for the company behind the sensor technology in the motion-detecting Kinect gaming accessory for the Microsoft Xbox 360 and forthcoming Xbox One.

Probably the most likely candidate in the Apple portfolio to be Kinect-ed up is Apple TV — or rather Apple’s long-rumoured reinvention of the humble telly. Inevitably — but problematically, at least in the UK — dubbed iTV, the hotly-anticipated Apple take on TV could be controlled by hand gestures if the buy goes ahead.

Israel-based company PrimeSense is involved in the sensor technology that powers the arm-flailing Kinect, which reads your movements and translates it into movement or control in the game you’re playing.

Microsoft was happy to license the technology from PrimeSense for Kinect, but Apple is having none of that carry-on. With a mountain of cash in the iVaults, Apple is set to fork out for the whole kit and caboodle instead.

If Apple does assimilate PrimeSense into the fruit-flavoured Cupertino collective, it’s unclear what that’ll mean for other companies licensing PrimeSense tech, such as Asus, iRobot and many more.

Source: CNET UK

Nintendo has announced it will launch a new version of its Wii console in 2012.

new, Wii console in 2012?

new, Wii console in 2012?

Nintendo has announced it will launch a new version of its Wii console in 2012.

No technical details about the machine have been revealed, but gamers will get an early preview at the E3 Expo in Los Angeles in June, The original Wii proved a runaway hit for Nintendo when it launched five years ago. However, sales have been gradually declining in the face of tough competition from PlayStation, XBox 360 and mobile gaming platforms.

Wii was the first console of the current generation to offer motion controlled gameplay. In the past year, Microsoft has introduced its Kinect system for XBox, while Sony launched PlayStation Move.

Nintendo’s chief executive, Satoru Iwata suggested that his company was preparing a fresh innovation.

It will offer a new way of playing games within the home.” he said.

Gameplay
Some observers had speculated that the Wii 2 would simply update the existing machine, adding a handful of features such as high definition graphics.

However Johnny Minkley, an editor at Eurogamer.net, believes that Nintendo could be planning a broader redesign.

The talk was about Wii HD, but I do not see Nintendo doing that. It will do something more innovative.” he told BBC News.

Mr Minkley noted that Nintendo marketed the original Wii around its motion-sensing handset, rather than technical specifications – something he expects to see repeated.

“PlayStation 3 and XBox 360 were part of the graphics arms race.

“Nintendo would never launch a console based on the strength of hardware. Theirs has to have a gameplay point to it,” he said.

Sales slump
The Wii took an early lead in the battle of the consoles soon after it launched in late 2006.

A combination of its relatively low price and its appeal to non-traditional gamers – including women and older players – helped the company sell 20m units in the first year.

In the financial year 2009/10, Nintendo shipped 20.1m Wii consoles. However, that fell to 15.1m in 2010/11.

Market data suggested that Wii’s share of new console sales had slipped to second place behind Sony’s PS3

In the first three months of 2011, PS3 held a 36% share, compared with 32% for the Wii and 31% for XBox 360.

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