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May 31st, 2012

Published by: VR-Zone

VR-Zone.com | Tech News for the Geeks! VR-Zone | Stuff for the Geeks is a bi-weekly publication covering the latest gadgets and stuff for the geeks.

Porsche Design and Research In Motion launch P'9981 smartphone in Singapore Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/porsche-design-and-research-inmotion-launch-p-9981-smartphone-in-singapore/16107.html May 31st, 2012

The Porsche Design P'9981 was unveiled in Singapore, in November last year. Today, the company and Research in Motion have jointly announced that the smartphone will retail in all Porsche Design stores and authorized retailers from today.

The P'9981 claims to incorporate the best in design and technology features from Porsche Design and Research in Motion respectively. It features a forged stainless steel frame, hand-wrapped leather rear cover, sculpted QWERTY keyboard, and crystal clear touch display. Powered by a 1.2GHz processor and 8GB onboard memory, the smartphone is built with Liquid Graphics technology that offers a highly responsive touch experience with seamless graphics, and runs BlackBerry 7 OS. The P'9981 also features HD video recording, 24-bit high resolution graphics, microSD card slot for expansion, advanced sensors, and built-in support for Near Field Communications (NFC). So how is the P'9981 different from other QWERTY BlackBerry devices on the market? Well, the differences include the design, as well as its exclusive Porsche Design user interface, Wikitude World Browser augmented reality app experience, and a premium, exclusive PIN that easily identifies the owner as a holder of a Porsche Design P’9981 smartphone. The Porsche Design P’9981 smartphone from BlackBerry will be available at all Porsche Design stores in Singapore, as well as authorized retailers at S$2,800.

Megaupload lawyers aiming to have case thrown out Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/megaupload-lawyers-aiming-tohave-case-thrown-out/16106.html May 31st, 2012

The lawyers for file-sharing firm Megaupload are attempting to get the copyright infringement case against the company quashed and assets unfrozen.

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The lawyers for file-sharing firm Megaupload are attempting to get the copyright infringement case against the company quashed and assets unfrozen. The company's legal team claims that US federal authorities have no right to charge the company, as it is outside their jurisdiction, since it is a Hong Kong-based firm. Lawyers also claim that no papers were formally served, which means Megaupload could get off on a technicality of law, rather than its proposed innocence. "This case was flawed from the start, once this case gets dismissed it cannot be fixed," said Ira Rothken, US general counsel for Megaupload, who specialises in intellectual property lawsuits. He said the FBI had made a fatal mistake in its case against the file-sharing company by not following proper protocol.

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EU to bring Germany to court over not storing user data Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/eu-to-bring-germany-to-court-overnot-storing-user-data/16105.html May 31st, 2012

The European Commission is bringing Germany to court over failing to store telephone and email data for a six month period, as required under European Union laws. The European Commission is bringing Germany to court over failing to store telephone and email data for a six month period, as required under European Union laws. The Commission is seeking a fine from the European Court of Justice against Berlin for not implementing the 2006 EU directive, which requires telecommunications companies to store phone records and internet logs for at least six months so that police can more easily investigate crimes. The directive was to be implemented in a new German law, but in March 2010 the country's highest court overturned the law, calling it a grave intrusion to the right to privacy. The court called for the law to be revised so that it did not infringe upon the rights of individuals. Narrower legislation has since been proposed, but the Commission said that this would not fully comply with the EU directive.

Rothken is also seeking for frozen assets, totalling millions of dollars, to be freed up. This was a strong criticism from the start, as lawyers for Megaupload claimed that it and its staff were being prevented from properly defending itself due to the freezing of its money. The popular storage website was shut down in January when the home of Kim Dotcom, Megaupload's founder, was raided by New Zealand police. He and several of the company's executives were arrested and attempts to extradite them to the US were made. The situation caused panic throughout the file-sharing world, with many similar websites shutting down over fear of similar prosecution. Dotcom and other key employees face charges of racketeering, copyright infringement, and conspiring to commit money laundering. A judge ruled in March that the court order used to seize a number of Dotcom's belongings was unlawful, and this latest claim by the Megaupload's lawyers suggests the entire case may become another farce in the history of botched lawsuits.

"Ongoing delays in transposing the directive into national law are likely to have a negative effect on the internal market for electronic communications and on the ability of police and justice authorities to detect, investigate and prosecute serious crime," the Commission said, according to the Associated Press. The Commission is hoping to secure a fine of â‚Ź315,000 for every day that Germany fails to comply with the EU law, starting with the day of the court ruling. If secured this could add up to millions if the country's Chancellor, Angela 2

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Merkel, fails to pass the law, which won't be easy, given a strong stance against privacy invasion in the country.

Historic sites opened to all with Google World Wonders Project Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/historic-sites-opened-to-all-withgoogle-world-wonders-project/16103.html May 31st, 2012

Published by: VR-Zone

providing 3D models and YouTube videos, in addition to historical information for research or just for curiosity. Google partnered with UNESCO, the World Monuments Fund, Getty Images and Ourplace for information and photographs. Google has been launching a number of projects as part of the Google Cultural Institute to preserve and share famous historical material. It is publishing high-resolution images of the Dead Sea Scrolls, digitizing the archives of Nelson Mandela, and showcasing the world's art as part of its Art Project, which expanded form 17 museums to 151 in April.

The Google World Wonders Project can be accessed here. Google has launched the World Wonders Project, which lets people from around the world get a panoramic view of some of the world's most iconic historical locations. Google has launched the World Wonders Project, which lets people from around the world get a panoramic view of some of the world's most iconic historical locations. A whopping 132 sites spanning 18 countries are on offer, dwarfing the original Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. These span a variety of categories, including archaeological sites, architecture, cities and towns, historical sites, monuments and memorials, palaces and castles, parks and gardens, places of worship, regions and landscapes, and wonders of nature. Among the collection are Stonehenge, Pompeii, the Kyoto temples, Shark Bay, and the Yoesmite National Park. The only surviving ancient Wonder, the Great Pyramid of Giza, is not on the list, but we expect it is only a matter of time before Google expands this collection to feature more important “wonders� throughout the world.

Gigabyte goes ultra-light with X11 Ultrabook Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/gigabyte-goes-ultra-light-with-x11ultrabook/16101.html May 31st, 2012

How about a 975g Ultrabook? Sounds tempting doesn't it, at least if you're a road warrior that spend a lot of time travelling with your notebook. The good news is that Gigabyte's X11 Ultrabook officially weighs in at 975g, although the model at the launch event came in even lighter at 973g, How about a 975g Ultrabook? Sounds tempting doesn't it, at least if you're a road warrior that spend a lot of time travelling with your notebook. The good news is that Gigabyte's X11 Ultrabook officially weighs in at 975g, although the model at the launch event came in even lighter at 973g,

The service employs Street View technology to provide a digital look at sites that may otherwise be inaccessible to many people. Since many of these could not be filmed by Google's cars, the company used trikes that carried cameras close enough to take pictures. It is not just a Street View look at the famous buildings or natural formations, however, as Google is also

Having the worlds lightest Ultrabook is a nice claim to fame, but the question is if the X11 will prove to be competitive 3

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enough in the long run. As you'd expect, this is an Ivy Bridge powered Ultrabook, although Gigabyte didn't specify which CPUs the X11 will ship with. We're curious about the choice of chipset as well, as according to the specifications the X11 sports the HM77 chipset rather than the Ultrabook specific UM77 chipset. It's disappointing to see 4GB of soldered on DDR3 memory with no alternative SKU's, nor any way of upgrading the memory, we would really have liked to have seen an 8 GB SKU at least. Likewise the 128GB mSATA SSD isn't exactly as roomy as it gets and once again Gigabyte doesn't appear to offer any alternative SKUs.

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you've got a good mix out of a productivity point of view. Less impressive is the 35Wh 4730mAh Li-Polymer battery which isn't likely to last more than 5-6h at light use, although Gigabyte didn't specify the battery life. At US$999-1,299 depending on CPU the X11 isn't a budget model for sure and we have a feeling that despite its light weight, it's going to have a tough time competing with the more established notebook makers. Time will tell, but at least this is easily the best notebook in terms of build quality that we've seen from Gigabyte to date.

Doom 3 for Xbox and PS3 supports head mounted display Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/doom-3-for-xbox-and-ps3-supportshead-mounted-display/16100.html May 31st, 2012

Doom’s co-creator, John Carmack said in a press-release today that Xbox’s & PlayStation’s Doom 3 will have support for “3D TVs, monitors, and head mounted displays [allowing] players to experience the game with more depth than ever before. We think shooter fans everywhere will love it.” What’s exciting for gamers is that Doom 3 will support head mounted displays!

However, the biggest letdown is the glossy 11.6-inch 1366x768 display, this really is last year's spec and we were hoping for at least a 1600x900 display, if not a 1920x1080 display as per Asus' new UX21A. At least the screen bezel is matte which should help reduce additional reflections. Gigabyte has skimped a bit on some other features too, such as only including single band 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi and a single USB 3.0 port, despite the fact that the chipset supports up to four ports so there's not even an issue about cost. The remaining connectivity options include a single USB 2.0 port, a mini DisplayPort, a D-sub connector and Bluetooth 4.0. You also get a microSD card reader and a 1.3Megapixel webcam.

Doom’s co-creator, John Carmack said in a press-release today that Xbox’s & PlayStation’s Doom 3 will have support for “3D TVs, monitors, and head mounted displays [allowing] players to experience the game with more depth than ever before. We think shooter fans everywhere will love it.” What’s exciting for gamers is that Doom 3 will support head mounted displays! Head mounted displays is a rather futuristic toy that many might not be able to afford, but the notion of seeing blood and gore gushing directly into your eyeballs is every hardcore gamer’s dream (okay, maybe just a few…). If you don’t have access to a hideous display helmet, Carmack claims that if you purchase the Doom 3 BFG Edition it will come with “enhanced graphics.”

Microsoft's Chuck Chan accidentally revealed details about Windows 8 Release Preview Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/microsoft-s-chuckchan-accidentally-revealed-details-about-windows-8-releasepreview/16099.html May 31st, 2012

The build quality of the X11 is light years ahead of what we've seen from Gigabyte in the past and contrary to what you'd think, the carbon fibre body feels very sturdy. Throw in a pretty good keyboard and a large, easy to use touch pad and 4

May 31st, 2012

Published by: VR-Zone

Microsoft has stirred up some more gossips with its recent “accidental” blog post about the Windows 8 Release Preview. Vice President of Windows Development team, Chuck Chan, posted a rather detailed blog about the Windows 8 Release Preview on the Windows Hardware and Driver Developer Blog. According to thenextweb.com, the blog post wasn’t actually supposed to go live until June 1st. No worries Microsoft, we’re not stalking you or anything. The blog has been removed, but there’s a screen capture for those that may want read more into it. Microsoft has stirred up some more gossips with its recent “accidental” blog post about the Windows 8 Release Preview. Vice President of Windows Development team, Chuck Chan, posted a rather detailed blog about the Windows 8 Release Preview on the Windows Hardware and Driver Developer Blog. According to thenextweb.com, the blog post wasn’t actually supposed to go live until June 1st. No worries Microsoft, we’re not stalking you or anything. The blog has been removed, but there’s a screen capture for those that may want read more into it.

Apple has been very tight-lipped about their Mac Pro line, and it doesn’t seem like they will be making an announcement about it anytime soon. Jim Dalrymphle, an Apple insider, is confident that Apple won’t discontinue the Mac Pro. In a recent Amplified podcast with Dan Benjamin, Dalrymple gave a resounding “no” when asked by Benjamin if there was a “chance” that Apple will cut the Mac Pro line. Bejamin followed up with, “You’re really confident in that? You feel good about that?” Dalrymple’s response was just laughter, and the podcast continued. The last Mac Pro update was in July 2010—that’s almost two years ago. In an industry where tech updates and new products churn out every second, Apple’s practice of keeping product development top secret is extreme. Apple has been so secretive about the Mac Pro matter that even a facebook petition with 14.9k likes has yet to persuade Apple to give an answer. Professionals who rely on the Mac Pro to produce their work are not technically angry with the lack of news regarding an update to their computer, but rather they want to know if they should move onto other hardware and/or platforms in case there’s no update for the Mac Pro.

Apple's Mac Pro line may continue Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/apple-s-mac-pro-line-maycontinue/16098.html May 31st, 2012

Apple has been very tight-lipped about their Mac Pro line, and it doesn’t seem like they will be making an announcement about it anytime soon. Jim Dalrymphle, an Apple insider, is confident that Apple won’t discontinue the Mac Pro.

Appleinsider.com asked Lou Borella, self-proclaimed professional editor and graphic animator, if he was worried about the future of the Mac Pro. Borella states that he enjoys most of Apple’s products, but because he relies on his Mac Pro to make a living—that he needs “a little clarity.” 5

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Many Mac Pro users who are tired of waiting for an update are opting to build “Hackingtosh” systems—customized hardware PCs with Mac OS running it. Apple is making $5.1 billion from the Mac line for the quarter, so it is puzzling to see why Apple hasn’t been updating a product line that’s raking in so much money. Nonetheless, it is advisable for anyone to not purchase a Mac Pro now as the product hasn’t received any major updates in two years. Chances are Apple will continue the Mac Pro line, but the question is when they will let consumers know. Currently, Apple offers a Mac Pro with up to 12 cores under the hood—thus, a top of the line Mac Pro system can handle just about anything. Nevertheless, two years is two years, and people want something new.

ZTE Athena claims title of world's thinnest smartphone [Rumor] Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/zte-athena-claims-title-of-world-sthinnest-smartphone-rumor-/16096.html May 31st, 2012

A few days ago, Oppo announced that its Finder was “world’s thinnest smartphone,” and today ZTE is making a move at that title with its Athena smartphone. The Oppo Finder is 6.65 mm thick, but that’s old news because ZTE’s Athena will be 6.20 mm thick. Nothing is official yet, but according to rumors, the Athena will boast some impressive specs.

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Verizon's FiOS to offer 300 Mbps package Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/verizon-s-fios-to-offer-300-mbpspackage/16095.html May 31st, 2012

Verizon’s FiOS will increase its current bandwidth offering as well as pricings. FiOS will offer a new “ultimate” package that includes 300 Mbps downstream and 65 Mbps. It’s currently unknown whether Verizon plans to replace its current ultimate package (150 Mbps up/35 Mbps down) or adjust it to a lower tier offering. The lowest tier package of 15 Mbps down/5 Mbps up is expected to remain, but the 35/25 Mbps up packages will increase to 75/50 Mbps up, respectively.

Verizon’s FiOS will increase its current bandwidth offering as well as pricings. FiOS will offer a new “ultimate” package that includes 300 Mbps downstream and 65 Mbps. It’s currently unknown whether Verizon plans to replace its current ultimate package (150 Mbps up/35 Mbps down) or adjust it to a lower tier offering. The lowest tier package of 15 Mbps down/5 Mbps up is expected to remain, but the 35/25 Mbps up packages will increase to 75/50 Mbps up, respectively. Changes with regard to the pricings of the packages are not yet known. However, if the new 300 Mbps package replaces the 150 Mbps package, expect the new ultimate package to cost a bit—if not a lot—more. The current ultimate package runs a cool $199.99 per month, and if FiOS current ultimate customers opt to keep their ultimate package—it may cause even more anguish when the bills come around.

A few days ago, Oppo announced that its Finder was “world’s thinnest smartphone,” and today ZTE is making a move at that title with its Athena smartphone. The Oppo Finder is 6.65 mm thick, but that’s old news because ZTE’s Athena will be 6.20 mm thick. Nothing is official yet, but according to rumors, the Athena will boast some impressive specs.

Apple TV OS may be demoed at June's WWDC Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/apple-tv-os-may-be-demoed-at-junes-wwdc/16090.html May 31st, 2012

The title of thinnest smartphone may change hands at any given time, and it’s nice to see manufacturers competing with each other to deliver the best of the best.

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Tech blog BGR claims to have it from a "trusted source" that Apple is going to showcase the operating system for its television set at this year's Worldwide Developer's Conference in June. Tech blog BGR claims to have it from a "trusted source" that Apple is going to showcase the operating system for its television set at this year's Worldwide Developer's Conference in June. According to the report, it is unlikely that Apple will demonstrate the actual television at the event, but will be showing off their operating system for the device. The source alleges that Apple wants to give developers a chance to develop components to interface with the television before it is released.

Published by: VR-Zone May 31st, 2012

Japan has made its first arrest under the new version of its anti-piracy act, known as the Unfair Competition Prevention Act. Authorities in Japan have made the first arrest under the Unfair Competition Prevention Act since the amendments made last year to combat piracy. Nintendo posted a press release (in Japanese) about the incident. The accused, a 39-year-old man from Saitama, is said to have sold R4 cartridges, devices used to pirate games for the Nintendo DS, to three separate individuals over the Internet between February 14th and March 9th for 7,200 yen (roughly $91 USD). The Aichi Prefectural Police Department carried out the arrest on Wednesday.

According to BGR's report, "This new OS is said to be much more feature-complete than the current OS that runs on the Apple TV, and is apparently the one that Apple's upcoming HDTV will run. Yes, that one. We've heard Apple is actively trying to court manufacturers to use a new "control out" API in order for third-party manufacturers to make accessories that are compatible with the new Apple TV OS and the upcoming "iTV." It's said that by using the API, it will be possible to control any connected components all from the Apple remote (and the Apple remote iOS app as well, we're assuming)." The nation is likely ready for a "smart" television, and the FCC might soon make a decision that will ease such a release for Apple. Recently, WantChinaTimes reported that its sources had told them FoxConn was already receiving orders for the Apple TV, and was currently in the ""trial production stage." However trustworthy BGR deems its source, this is not a confirmation of anything. It has released inaccurate information before regarding hardware. However, the blog issued correct information regarding iOS releases in 2011, and could very well be correct this time too.

First Arrest Made Under Japanese Anti-Piracy Act Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/first-arrest-made-under-japaneseanti-piracy-act/16088.html

In the press release, Nintendo expressed its hope that this arrest would cause the devices to disappear from the marketplace. While the R4 and similar devices (known in Japan as majikon) have been illegal to sell for years, there was no criminal penalty for doing so. This meant the devices were easily obtainable both on the Internet and on the streets of electronics districts throughout Japan. In December of 2011, however, a revision was made to Japan’s Unfair Competition Prevention Act which allows for criminal penalties to be applied to, in the words of the law, “the act of providing devices to circumvent technological restriction measures.� Nintendo did not comment about the details of the case other than applauding the efforts of the Aichi Prefectural Police Department. Also included in the announcement was news of a man arrested in Fukuoka this past February for modding Wii consoles to allow them to play copied software that had been backed up to a USB hard drive. He was also charged with violating the new Unfair Competition Prevention Act along with the Japanese Copyright Act, though his case did not deal directly with majikon devices. Nintendo also praised majikon sale bans in countries around the world, such as Korea, Taiwan, the UK, Italy, Holland, and Germany.

Apple might be closer to getting the iPad in China Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/apple-might-be-closer-to-gettingthe-ipad-in-china/16091.html May 31st, 2012

On Wednesday, Apple crossed a barrier which had been preventing it from selling a 3G device in China. This could very well be the iPad, which Apple has had trouble selling in the country due to a legal battle. On Wednesday, Apple crossed a barrier which had been preventing it from selling a 3G device in China. This could 7

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very well be the iPad, which Apple has had trouble selling in the country due to a legal battle.

According to the Wall Street Journal, "According to the website of China's Telecommunication Equipment Certification Center, an Apple device with thirdgeneration, or 3G, data capabilities has been issued the license needed for the company to begin sales in China. The device would be compatible with the network of China Unicom (Hong Kong) Ltd., Apple's longtime partner in releasing its popular iPhone and iPad devices. The notice on the website didn't name the device, listed as 'model number A1430.'" An ID lookup on EveryMac.com’s product identifier reveals that the number A1430 belongs to the 3rd generation Apple iPad. This model includes both Wi-Fi and cellular service. Previously, Chinese regulators did approve a Wi-Fi only version of the iPad. However, this device never did go on sale anywhere in the country. This is likely due to Apple's legal battle with Proview, a Chinese manufacturer who claimed to own the 'iPad' trademark in China. There is an enormous amount of growing that Apple could potentially do in China, and it needs to resolve its battles soon. This new step, whatever it was, could be very beneficial for Apple’s business in China, which is considered the most important market to Apple after North America. In the meantime, Apple still needs to get a better foothold in the country. Currently, Android phones dominate the nation's market, and Microsoft recently claimed that Windows phone sales were also surpassing the iPhone there.

Sony's future gaming console will have an optical drive Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/sony-s-future-gaming-console-willhave-an-optical-drive/16094.html May 31st, 2012

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collecting physical copies of video games may not come to an end after all.

Cloud gaming services such as Valve’s Steam are stirring up the traditional brick and mortar gaming market, but according to WSJ.com, Sony will not abandon the optical disk in its next gaming console. Hence, the days of people collecting physical copies of video games may not come to an end after all. In 2013, Sony will release the PlayStation 3’s successor with improved hardware while maintaining most of the same business strategies. Sony has reported profit from its PS3 platform the last two years, and Sony’s Chief Executive, Kazuo Hirai, hopes that the new console will continue to rake in the profits. Many brick and mortar companies that associate themselves with Sony will be at risk of incurring huge losses in revenue if Sony did decide to go the downloadable content only route in the next Sony gaming console. GameStop, a major outlet for many PS3 games, agrees that it will need to transition to a cloud system of distributing gaming titles to remain relevant in the gaming market. However, as with any major industry transitions, it will take some time to adopt. "If we all agree the technology is inevitable—which I think it is because it's like death and taxes—it's still going to take longer to happen than it did for music and movies," GameStop’s CEO, Paul Raines, commented about the gaming market’s transition to a cloud based platform. Perhaps Sony is trying to maintain a good relation between itself and its business partners by opting to keep the optical drive as the main mean of software decoding. However, that does not mean that Sony is unaware of the inevitable market transition to the clouds. Sony intend to integrate more downloadable contents into its future console, more than it currently has in its PS3 console. In addition to maintaining good relationships with its partners, Sony believes that worldwide internet connections are not stable enough for it to make a complete transition to downloadable only contents. Sony wants its product to be in the hands of as many people as possible, and to make a product that requires a fast and stable internet connection only limits that objective.

Cloud gaming services such as Valve’s Steam are stirring up the traditional brick and mortar gaming market, but according to WSJ.com, Sony will not abandon the optical disk in its next gaming console. Hence, the days of people

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(cisco.com)

Until Sony releases a cloud only console, those of us that have shelves of PlayStations CDs, DVDs, and Blu-rays may continue tout our tangible collections for the world to envy.

Cisco's VNI predicts the internet will be four times larger by 2016

Emergence and increasing popularity of mobile devices such as smart phone and tablets have become a big part of why more and more people are in need of a connection to the internet. In 2011, 10.3 billion devices connected to the internet, but by 2016 18.9 billion devices will require a connection. Essentially, each person on earth right now requires about 1 internet connection, but in 2016 you will need 2 connections as you may own two or more devices that require a connection. Each person on earth may not own more devices that require an internet connection, but more and more people are gaining access to the internet globally. The internet is expected to reach 3.4 billion users in 2016—that’s a 45% increase in users from 2011’s estimate!

Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/cisco-s-vni-predicts-the-internetwill-be-four-times-larger-by-2016/16093.html May 31st, 2012

Cisco’s Visual Networking Index (VNI) recently released its annual report that predicts the internet will be four times larger in 2016. Factors that contribute to the internet’s rapid growth include—but not limited to—increased number of devices that can connect to the internet, more internet users, faster broadband speeds, more video media, and expansion of Wi-Fi access. Cisco’s Visual Networking Index (VNI) recently released its annual report that predicts the internet will be four times larger in 2016. Factors that contribute to the internet’s rapid growth include—but not limited to—increased number of devices that can connect to the internet, more internet users, faster broadband speeds, more video media, and expansion of Wi-Fi access. The VNI suggests that global IP traffic will reach 1.3 zettabytes (1 zettabyte = 1 trillion gigabytes). The total amount of IP traffic in 2011 is about 369 exabytes, but Cisco expects the annual IP traffic to increase by 330 exabytes between 2015 and 2016.

(cisco.com) Furthermore, improvements to networking infrastructures will deliver faster connections for users, and a faster connection means more downloading and uploading. Currently, the average fixed broadband connection is about 9 Mbps, but by 2016 it will increase about four folds to approximately 34 Mbps. Availability and open access to Wi-Fi connections may be a great business practice for growing businesses such as internet cafés, but it just so happen that great business practices also contribute to the internet’s rapid growth. Cisco forecasts that over half of the world’s internet connection will come via Wi-Fi connections. If you think the internet is an immense virtual space now, imagine what it will be in four years. If the internet is all corners of the earth now, cyberspace will be the Milky Way in the coming years. If you’re planning to contain the internet to its current state right now, check out VR-Zone’s “how to destroy the internet” article, but if you’re looking to forward to taming the a virtual monstrosity that will come about, then just sit back and wait for it to come roaring at you. A full report from Cisco’s VNI can be found here.

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Check out Hovding's airbag helmet if you want to cycle in style

Published by: VR-Zone

from hundreds of normal cycling situations and accident simulations.

Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/check-out-hovding-s-airbag-helmetif-you-want-to-cycle-in-style/16092.html May 31st, 2012

Let’s just admit it, bicycle helmets are bulky and ugly, but a Swedish company has come up with a design for an airbaghelmet design that just might make you want to put it on. The Hövding design company has concocted an airbag necklace that deploys when a person is detected as falling off or in a bicycle accident. The Hövding bicycle necklace has various sensors built in that detect the cyclist’s movement, and can deploy in a fraction of a second before impact.

A STM32 microcontroller is the brain of the necklace, and —according to Hövding—it is designed to conserve energy so riders don’t have to worry too much about charging their necklace. One setback of the necklace is that its main function is to protect riders from "abnormal movements"— therefore, if a rock come flying at you while you are on your bike, you would get hit by the rock first and then fall off your bike as the airbag deploys. “Hövding will only be deployed if the bicyclist makes an abnormal movement in an accident. This means that Hövding will not protect bicyclists from objects falling directly onto their head from above. However, this type of bicycling accident is extremely rare.” - hovding.com The benefits of having an airbag protecting you from a bicycle accident is great, but will it look as good on you as it did on the Hövding supermodel?

Let’s just admit it, bicycle helmets are bulky and ugly, but a Swedish company has come up with a design for an airbaghelmet that just might make you want to put it on. The Hövding design company has concocted an airbag necklace that deploys when a person is detected as falling off or in a bicycle accident. The Hövding bicycle necklace has various sensors built in that detect the cyclist’s movement, and can deploy in a fraction of a second before impact. The integrated sensors detect linear and angular motion so it doesn’t matter which direction you fall or fly, the airbag will deploy to reduce the degrees of injuries that may ensue. Much like a computer that has learned a thing or two about human behavior, the Hövding necklace is run by sophisticated algorithms that call up information

Asus' Maximus V Formula to be available in two SKUs Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/asus-maximus-v-formula-to-beavailable-in-two-skus/16089.html

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Published by: VR-Zone

May 31st, 2012

So far Asus has been very secretive about one feature of its upcoming Maximums V Formula R.O.G. motherboard and even covered up part of the motherboard when showing off the board at various events. VR-Zone can now exclusively reveal what the hidden feature is and we've also found out that Asus will be offering two slightly different SKUs of the motherboard in question. So far Asus has been very secretive about one feature of its upcoming Maximums V Formula R.O.G. motherboard and even covered up part of the motherboard when showing off the board at various events. VR-Zone can now exclusively reveal what the hidden feature is and we've also found out that Asus will be offering two slightly different SKUs of the motherboard in question. Beyond what we reported back in March, not that much appear to have change with the board itself, but it looks like Asus will be bundling a dual band mini PCI Express 802.1a/ b/g/n Wi-Fi/Bluetooth 4.0 card with the board, something that wasn't clear at the press event.

As we mentioned, Asus will be offering two SKUs of the Maximus V Formula, one with and one without the ThunderFX USB sound card and amplifier. We're still not sure we get the point of the ThunderFX as a motherboard bundle, as this C-Media 6631 powered USB sound card appears to have been designed more for console use as a headset amplifier and noise cancelling solution. We'd rather have had the noise cancelling built into the motherboard audio in this case via some external microphone array, but then again, a pair of noise cancelling headphones ought to do the job just as well. Asus should be unveiling the Maximus V Formula at Computex next week, alongside a range of other new R.O.G. products at a special press event. We would expect the Maximus V Formula to be yet another expensive model from Asus, but it should be less than the P8Z77-V Premium at least.

Sadly this is the best picture we've managed to dig up of the two SKUs The big secret that Asus was hiding on the boards with a small cardboard cover with an R.O.G. logo on it is a headphone amplifier. Sadly we don't have a picture of it, but it's using a Texas Instruments 6120A2 amplifier, an amplifier Asus has used in some of its higher-end sound cards like the Xonar Essence STX. We're still not sure about the audio codec for this motherboard, so we'll have to wait and see, as Asus is simply using its SupremeFX IV branding which doesn't really give away a lot of details, as the company has used various audio controllers with the SupremeFX branding.

iPhone Users are Heaviest Data Users, Unclear Why Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/iphone-users-are-heaviest-datausers-unclear-why/16087.html May 31st, 2012

A new report on heavy data users shows that iPhone owners account for a vast majority of the heaviest data users, but the data is unclear as to why that is. According to a new report from the technology research firm Analysys Mason, owners of Apple’s iPhone are more data hungry than users of any other smartphone. iPhone owners now account for 80% of the top 10% of data users, massively eclipsing Android, Blackberry, and Windows Phone users combined. In fact, going as far as the top 30% shows a very Apple-heavy trend, surprising when you consider that Android phones, due to their open platform, allow data to be used far easier 11

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and more frequently, or that Apple’s devices are still using 3G networks, meaning that their network connections run slower than the new 4G Android models being offered. The data was collected using an on-device tracker, installed on over 1,000 devices across the US and Western Europe, that monitors smartphone behavior. Heavy data users, while accounting for a small percentage of the total sample size, tended to use four times as much data on average than normal users. American smartphone owners also tended to use more data than their European counterparts, with an average of 30% of users consuming more than 500MB of data per month, compared to 8-13% for Europe. It’s not clear what is causing the massive uptick in data usage by iPhone users. While iPhone 4S users are more likely to use more data than earlier models, Siri (available only on the 4S model) cannot account for the massive amount of data, with typical Siri usage being only a few MB per month. It is possible that the data may be skewed, as the sample size is fairly small, given that there are hundreds of millions of smartphone users across the world, but at the moment Analysys Mason is unsure of the cause. Image credit: zuchronicles

G.Skill Memory Overclocking Extravaganza @ Computex Taipei 2012 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/g.skill-memory-overclockingextravaganza--computex-taipei-2012/16083.html May 31st, 2012

G.Skill has organized a "World-Class Overclocking Invitational" at their Nangang booth during the Computex Taipei 2012 show days, featuring international superstars like Kingp|n and Elmor from leading manufacturers ASUS, MSI, Gigabyte and EVGA. When: June 5th – 9th, 11am – 5pm Where: Computex Taipei 2012, Nangang Exhibition Hall, Booth I0118 Who:

Published by: VR-Zone

The representatives from the four leading brands will be aiming to showcase the (subzero) overclocking potential of the top motherboards/graphic cards that they will be using, as well as gun for world records using G.Skill's critically acclaimed TridentX memory modules. Our team will be there every day to keep an eye on their progress and report their successes to our readers.

SpaceX and Intelsat sign deal for first commercial Falcon Heavy space rocket launch Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/spacex-and-intelsat-sign-deal-forfirst-commercial-falcon-heavy-space-rocket-launch/16086.html May 31st, 2012

Following last week's successful shuttle mission to the International Space Station, SpaceX has secured a contract with the world's leading satellite provider, Intelsat, for the first commercial launch of the Falcon Heavy rocket. Following last week's successful shuttle mission to the International Space Station, SpaceX has secured a contract with the world's leading satellite provider, Intelsat, for the first commercial launch of the Falcon Heavy rocket. This is the first time a private company has been signed to launch a rocket of this magntitude, which is the most powerful in the world, second only to the Apollo-era Saturn V moon rocket. The Falcon Heavy is capable of lifting 53 metric tons into low orbit around the Earth or over 12 metric tons into geosynchronous transfer orbit, the latter of which is the aim under the Intelsat contract. This is an extremely important deal, as it allows SpaceX to launch the world's largest satellites and opens doors to further space missions, making the company extremely attractive to a variety of international space agencies.

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Published by: VR-Zone May 31st, 2012

Microsoft is planning to expand its Xbox service and brand beyond the console market, making it a universal tool for the entire spectrum of visual, auditory and interactive entertainment. Microsoft is planning to expand its Xbox service and brand beyond the console market, making it a universal tool for the entire spectrum of visual, auditory and interactive entertainment.

"SpaceX is very proud to have the confidence of Intelsat, a leader in the satellite communication services industry," said Elon Musk, CEO and Chief Designer of SpaceX. "The Falcon Heavy has more than twice the power of the next largest rocket in the world. With this new vehicle, SpaceX launch systems now cover the entire spectrum of the launch needs for commercial, civil and national security customers." SpaceX is making a name for itself throughout the world and revolutionising the approach to space exploration, which has until now been limited to government space agencies, many of which are seeing severe budget cuts due to the international economic turmoil. Opening space to private enterprises allows for advances to continue to be made, indeed often at a faster pace, while not adding unnecessary debt for nations around the world.

“The Xbox has arrived at an important inflection point in its growth and development,” said Yusuf Mehdi, Chief Marketing Officer of the Interactive Entertainment Division at Microsoft. “In particular, in the last year, the Xbox has transcended from a gaming console to a broad entertainment device inclusive of movies, TV, music and sports.” Microsoft has already been expanding its Xbox service by adding 60 voice-controlled applications and over 200,000 premium movies and TV shows, and that is only in the last six months. We can expect further growth as Xbox becomes a universal entertainment brand. Mehdi attributes this expansion beyond gaming to the strong lifecycle of the Xbox 360, which has sold more units year-on-year even though it's now in its seventh year. People are also using their Xbox 360 more and more, with an average Xbox LIVE subscriber spending 84 hours per month on the console, in comparison to the 150 hours of TV watched by an average American.

NASA signed a $1.6 billion contract with SpaceX for over a dozen shuttle missions to the International Space Station in order to provide supplies to the astronauts there. It also inked a similar $1.9 billion deal with rival commercial space firm Orbital Sciences. Smaller ventures are being made by others, such as Surrey Satellite Technology Limited, which is using Android smartphones and Kinect motion trackers in microsatellites. The financial details of the Intelsat deal were not disclosed. Image Credit: SpaceX

Microsoft planning Xbox expansion beyond consoles Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/microsoft-planning-xbox-expansionbeyond-consoles/16085.html

“To date, our success with Xbox has been led by a box in the living room,” said Mehdi. “Moving forward, Xbox will go beyond the box to reach all new families of devices. Just as Xbox has grown to mean more than just games, it also is more than just a console. This year, Xbox becomes the premium entertainment service for Microsoft. Whether on your PC, tablet, TV or phone, Xbox will be a gateway to the best in music and video, your favorite games and instant access to your friends.” 13

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A major part of this move to multiple devices will be the launch of Windows 8, which will feature Xbox as the onestop shop for entertainment software. This will open the service to users of multiple devices and will expand the current 67 million Xbox 360 owners to potentially hundreds of millions of people running Xbox-enabled devices. Microsoft will unveil its Xbox plans at E3 next week, which will include new games, new ways to use Xbox for entertainment, such as its upcoming music service, and “a few surprises.”

THQ heralds wrestling revolution with WWE '13 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/thq-heralds-wrestling-revolutionwith-wwe-13/16084.html May 31st, 2012

The game will take advantage of the Predator Technology 2.0 engine for new animations, transitions and modified controls. The game will feature a career-style mode, as well as WWE Universe, which will dynamically introduce matches, alliances, rivalries and unpredictable moments based on player decisions. The WWE Creation Suite allows players to develop and customise their wrestlers, entrances, arenas, finishing moves, storylines, highlight reels and more, and these can be shared with other players around the world.

THQ has announced a wrestling revolution with WWE '13, promising “the most authentic, extensive and fervent experience to data,” with improvements to the commentary system and a single-player campaign based on the “Attitude Era” sparked by Stone Cold Steve Austin. THQ has announced a wrestling revolution with WWE '13, promising “the most authentic, extensive and fervent experience to data,” with improvements to the commentary system and a single-player campaign based on the “Attitude Era” sparked by Stone Cold Steve Austin. The major new feature of the game is WWE Live, an audio and presentation system that provides a more realistic experience of the wrestling phenomenon, with enhanced commentary, sound effects and crowd participation. It wouldn't be WWE without some out of the ring action either, so WWE '13 will come with Spectacular Moments, such as ring breaks and barricade crashes, which will make the fights that bit more exciting. Another highlight of the game will be its single-player campaign, based on the “Attitude Era,” otherwise known as the “Austin Era,” that began nearly 15 years ago with Stone Cold Steve Austin's rebellion. Players will get to relive this celebrated period of WWE history with eight characters from the era, including Sheamus, Undertaker, Mankind, Chris Jericho, Big Show, Mark Henry, and Stone Cold himself. Current WWE Champion CM Punk will also be on the list, along with other well-known Superstar wrestlers.

“WWE ’13 is certain to ignite our enthusiastic, worldwide fan base and encourage them to live a revolution that simply cannot be ignored,” said Sean Ratcliffe, VP of Global Brand Management at THQ. “WWE Live will bring the impassioned WWE live event experience into the living rooms of consumers, while critical core gameplay improvements and a serious dose of attitude will enable them to experience WWE action like never before.” The game will launch on the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and Wii on 30 October in North America.

PC Show 2012 Floor Plans and Booth Locations Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/pc-show-2012-floor-plans-andbooth-locations/16082.html May 31st, 2012

The 22nd PC SHOW is back again next month at Suntec Convention Centre for its 2012 iteration! Check out which of your favourite brands and shops will be participating in the show from our exclusive floor plans and start planning your hoots! Level 4 (Halls 401-404)

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Level 6 (Halls 601-603)

Published by: VR-Zone

For those of you that are lucky enough to get your hands on a Samsung Galaxy S III, we congratulate you on owning one of the hottest Android devices. For those of you that are still stuck in 2011’s Galaxy S II, Samsung may alleviate your pain with its recent release of an official ICS firmware for the Samsung Galaxy S II I9100G. Instructions for flashing some ICS goodness onto your SGII are found here. Those with the SGIII can also rejoice as Samsung also released an official carrier unbranded firmware in case you want to ditch your current firmware—not that you need to of course. There’s no doubt that Samsung’s generosity in releasing some official firmware will lead to some impressive third party ROMs in the future.

Official ICS firmware release for Galaxy S II and S III Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/official-ics-firmware-release-forgalaxy-s-ii-and-s-iii/16081.html May 31st, 2012

For those of you that are lucky enough to get your hands on a Samsung Galaxy S III, we congratulate you on owning one of the hottest Android devices. For those of you that are still stuck in 2011’s Galaxy S II, Samsung may alleviate your pain with its recent release of an official ICS firmware for the Samsung Galaxy S II I9100G.

RIM betting it all on BlackBerry 10 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/rim-betting-it-all-onblackberry-10/16080.html May 31st, 2012

In Hein’s closing statement of his letter to investors he essentially told investors that RIM’s future depends on the BlackBerry platform. RIM’s new strategies might be pouring most of its remaining assets into developing the BlackBerry platform to stay competitive with iOS and Android, or start licensing their products and/or services. Research In Motion is on the verge of being bought out by another company. In a recent letter to investors, RIM’s CEO Thorsten Heins confirmed that RIM had contacted J.P. Morgan and RBC Capital Markets to review RIM’s financial stability and goals.

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Published by: VR-Zone

processes with a goal of eliminating fragmentation, duplication and inefficiencies. While there will be significant spending reductions and headcount reductions in some areas throughout the remainder of the fiscal year, we will continue to spend and hire in key areas such as those associated with the launch of BlackBerry 10, and those tied to the growth of our application developer community." RIM certainly hasn’t tossed in the towel just yet, but if it continues to hemorrhage money then the BlackBerry brand is going to be a goner.

In Hein’s closing statement of his letter to investors he essentially told investors that RIM’s future depends on the BlackBerry platform. RIM’s new strategies might be pouring most of its remaining assets into developing the BlackBerry platform to stay competitive with iOS and Android, or start licensing their products and/or services. “To further enhance our commitment to successfully completing our transformation, after the release of our year-end financial results, we engaged J.P. Morgan Securities LLC and RBC Capital Markets to assist the Company and our Board of Directors in reviewing RIM’s business and financial performance. These advisors have been tasked to help us with the strategic review we referenced on our year-end financial results conference call and to evaluate the relative merits and feasibility of various financial strategies, including opportunities to leverage the BlackBerry platform through partnerships, licensing opportunities and strategic business model alternatives."

Ten years ago, almost every business professionals owned a BlackBerry, but now RIM has only approximately 78 million users worldwide. Adding to the painful decline in users, the BlackBerry platform has only about 80,000 apps to back it up. Whereas, Android has about 250,000 apps and iOS has over 350,000 apps. Scaling down and getting rid of “baggage” may help RIM’s cause. Blackberry 10 will have to be RIM’s saving grace, so it is understandable that Hein is calling for a spending and headcount reductions. RIM has removed various executives, and average jobs may also be sacrificed to the sake of BlackBerry 10’s development.

PC Show 2012 Promotions: Energizer Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/pc-show-2012-promotionsenergizer/16079.html May 31st, 2012

With smartphones getting more powerful dual- and even quad-core processors, battery life is an issue with such high performance. One alternative is getting a portable battery charger that can be used to charge your phones on the go. Well, Energizer will be showcasing their portable chargers and external battery packs at the PC Show 2012. Read on. Energizer XP2000

Available in black and white, the Energizer XP2000 is a 2000mAh @5V/1A portable charger for smartphones, iPod and MP3 Players and gaming devices. It comes with a charging cable and four tips (Apple, microUSB, miniUSB and Nokia) and pouch. It can deliver an additional time of up to 4hr for smartphones, 12hr for cellphone, 68hr for Bluetooth connectivity and 50hr for music players. PC Show 2012 price: S$69.90 Energizer XP4003

“We will also continue to review RIM's organizational structure and clearly define accountabilities for all key businesses and business 16

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Published by: VR-Zone May 31st, 2012

The Motorola DEFY XT will make its debut at the PC Show 2012, along with the other Star products like the XOOM 2 tablet, as well as ATRIX 2 and RAZR smartphones. The Motorola booth can be located at no. 303, level 3, and Singtel, Starhub and M1 booths. Motorola Defy XT

The Energizer XP4003 is designed for tablets, smartphones and other devices. With a 4000mAh @5V rating, it boasts to be capable of charging two devices at once. Comes in black and white finish, the XP4003 is bundled with a charging cable, Apple device cable, three tips (microUSB, miniUSB and Nokia) and pouch. It can provide an additional 8hr for smartphones, 4hr for tablets and 100hr for music players. PC Show 2012 price: S$109.90 Energizer XP18000

The Motorola Defy XT is designed with durable materials such as anti-reflective lens, scratch-resistant Corning Gorilla Glass and claims to be dust-proof, water-resistant and scratch-proof. It is equipped with a 1700mAh battery, which is one of the largest battery capacities in the market to date. Usual Price: S$399 PC Show Promotion: TBA Motorola RAZR

The Energizer XP18000 external battery pack is all you need to charge almost any devices - smartphones, iPod and MP3 players, gaming devices, portable DVDs, Bluetooth headsets, digital cameras, video camcorders, Apple 13-inch Macbook, netbooks and even laptops. It packs 18000mAh rating and can charge up to three devices at the same time. It offers additional 112hr for smartphones, 6hr for laptops and up to 540hr for music players. PC Show 2012 price: S$299.90 The Energizer products are distributed by Sprint Cass and the booths can be located at B2050, B2035 (Sprint Cass), B2072 and 315.

PC Show 2012 Promotions: Motorola

Available in Black and Glacier White, the Motorola RAZR is a sleek and slim smartphone, measuring just 7.1mm. It features diamond-cut aluminum accents and hyper-vibrant 4.3-inch Super AMOLED Advanced display, KEVLAR fibre coating and Corning Gorilla Glass. It is preloaded with Smart Actions that lets you automate everyday tasks and enable

Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/pc-show-2012-promotionsmotorola/16078.html

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Published by: VR-Zone

better battery life and Motorola MotoCast app, mobile cloud computing straight from your PC to the Motorola RAZR.

PC Show Promotion: TBA

Usual Price: S$799 PC Show Promotion: TBA

The Motorola Booth located at no 303, level 3, and the Motorola products can also be found at SingTel, M1 and Starhub booths.

Motorola ATRIX 2

PC Show 2012 Promotions: Soul by Ludacris Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/pc-show-2012-promotions-soul-byludacris/16056.html May 31st, 2012

Audiophiles who are looking for good deals on headphones may want to check out Soul by Ludacris at the PC Show 2012. The stylish headphones can be located at booth B2035 and B2050. Soul by Ludacris SL300 Gold/White and Black Designed with top-notch, cutting-edge materials and technology, the ATRIX 2 is equipped with a 1GHz dualcore processor for faster browsing and video playback. It sports a stunning 4.3-inch qHD screen and advanced 3D graphics for seamless game play and hours of entertainment. With ATRIX 2, you can access up to 10 free EA game titles, such as Need for Speed Hot Pursuit, Need for Speed Shift, Dead Space, EA SPORTS FIFA 10, THE GAME OF LIFE, MONOPOLY, The Sims 3, Tetris, Worms and Bejeweled 2. Normal Price: S$699 PC Show Price: TBA Motorola XOOM 2

The SL300 has a superior over-ear design with full ear cup articulation that ensures the best and most comfortable fit. It features advanced driver and circuitry design that offers superb bass, clear mids and highs with high-precision audio balance. On top of that, the SL300 is also equipped with Active Noise Cancelling Technology that eliminates unwanted sounds and noises. PC Show Price: S$599 with FREE iPair HEADPHONE AMPLIFIER worth S$69 Soul by Ludacris SL150

The new Motorola XOOM 2 is slightly lighter than its XOOM sibling, with brighter display and higher battery capacity; the battery claims to offer up to 10 hours of video playback. The Android tablet has splash-proof coating, scratch-resistant Corning Gorilla Glass and features a 10.1-inch widescreen HD display. With the integrated MOTOPRINT app, users can print wirelessly from the Motorola XOOM 2. Usual Price: TBA 18

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Windows Phone 8 to have global search function [Rumor] Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/windows-phone-8-to-have-globalsearch-function-rumor-/16077.html May 31st, 2012

The Soul by Ludacris SL150 has a sleek-folding design for easy storage and claims to be compatible with most smartphones and multimedia devices with 3.5mm or 1/4inch headphone jack. It also comes with tangle-resistant cable for easy cable management and gold-plated connector for seamless signal transfer. PC Show Price: S$449 with FREE iPair HEADPHONE AMPLIFIER worth S$69

An anonymous tipper has told insideris.com that there will be a global search feature in Windows Phone 8 that makes it easier for people to pull up contacts, apps, games, etc. Essentially, the global search function is a keyword based query algorithm that eliminates things that don’t match what you desire, and retaining the choices that you may want. An anonymous tipper has told insideris.com that there will be a global search feature in Windows Phone 8 that makes it easier for people to pull up contacts, apps, games, etc. Essentially, the global search function is a keyword based query algorithm that eliminates things that don’t match what you desire, and retaining the choices that you may want.

Soul by Ludacris SL100 Blue/Red/Pink (New!)

(mock-up of the global search function, neowin.net)

The SL100 is a lightweight and durable headphone that features superb bass, clear mids and highs with highprecision audio. Comes in three vibrant and vivid colors, the headphones is compatible with Apple products and other smartphones and comes with a tangle-resistant cable and a protective road case for convenience storage on the go. PC Show Price: S$349 Signeo South East Asia (SEA) Pte Ltd is the distributor of SOUL by Ludacris products. Their booths can be located at the PC Show (booth number B2035 and B2050).

The global search feature is especially appealing for mobile users, because if they have a lot of apps, documents, contacts, etc… then it would be much easier to do a search for what they want instead of having to scroll from screen to screen. There are similar “search” functions on Android and iOS devices, but perhaps Windows Phone 8 attempting to win over future users through ease of use. The Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) is just around the corner (June 5th-7th), and Microsoft is expected to reveal some more details regarding its Windows Phone 8. Hopefully, they confirm the global search feature as it would be awesome if Windows Phone 8 users can pull up anything on their device from the home screen.

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Meet Google's $199 Tablet Nexus 7 is HD Ready, Android 4.1, Runs on Tegra 3 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/meet-google-s-199-tablet--nexus-7is-hd-ready-android-4.1-runs-on-tegra-3/16076.html May 31st, 2012

There is a lot of talk about Google's upcoming tablet, which allegedly will be manufactured either by ASUS, Pegatron or a third source. However, we now have what are probably the final specs of the product which is to be revealed in just a few weeks. According to the specification which recently appeared on the Rightware's PowerBoard, Google Nexus 7 is the official name for the widely expected $199 tablet which resembles the NVIDIA Kai platform. As you might have assumed, Nexus 7 will combine a quint-core (4+1) Tegra 3 processor clocked at 1.3GHz. ASUSTeK Computer is in charge of manufaturing the device, which carries a lot of resemblance to the concept ASUS and NVIDIA jointly showed at CES 2012. The concept went into more detail couple of months later as NVIDIA revealed its $199 Kai development platform. Codename for this tablet is - "Grouper", perfectly fitting in Google's codebook. Google names its hardware upon fishes, while operating systems are named after deserts. New builds of their core business, the search engine - are named after wildlife animals of the continental kind. Five-point multi-touch is hardware accelerated (utilizing Tegra's fifth core and Synaptics IP) on top of a seven inch screen with 1280x800 pixel resolution i.e. HD Ready. The pixel density is a bit higher than 215 pixels per inch.

When it comes to the software part, Google decided to outfit the Nexus 7 with Android 4.1, the very latest version of its popular mobile operating system. Do note that the codename for Android 4.1 is not Ice Cream Sandwich, but rather Jelly Bean. While numerous Android fan sites wrote lyrics about "Android 5.0 Jelly Bean", the fact of the matter is that Android 4.0, 4.1 and 4.2 all have their respective codenames, with Jelly Bean being the code for 4.1. Truth to be told, the built-in OS corresponds to the code "JRN51B",

Published by: VR-Zone

which could be read as Jelly Bean 5.1. In reality, Android 4.1 is the next step, to be followed with 4.2 in the fall. This version also brings OpenGL ES to the latest version released by the Khronos Group, but don't expect fantastic performance - while you will get what you paid for, Rightware's Taiji OpenGL ES 2.0 test revealed a framerate of mere 18 frames per second, significantly slower than smartphone and tablets powered by NVIDIA Tegra 3. This has lead us to believe that Google is using LPDDR2 memory at 533MHz or 667, given that the 3D engine seems starved for data. All in all, it seems that ASUS and NVIDIA could not found better partner for its $249 concept tablet from CES 2012. The mighty Google itself.

PC Show 2012 Promotions: Philips Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/pc-show-2012-promotionsphilips/16045.html May 31st, 2012

For those of you who are looking for new speaker systems at the upcoming PC Show 2012, be sure to check out the Philips booth on level 4, Hall 403, booth number A2028. The Star products include the Philips Docking Speaker AS851, Docking Speaker AS351 and SoundBar Home theater with Ambisound HTS9140. Philips Docking Speaker AS851

Stylish and elegantly designed, the Philips Docking Speaker AS851 boasts Digital Sound Processing technology that delivers clear, detailed and powerful sound without distortion. It has a smart-designed FlexiDock that fits and charges Android phones, and features Bluetooth wireless music streaming capability from Android devices. Usual Price: S$349 PC Show Price: TBA Philips Docking Speaker AS351

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Meet the New Cyberespionage Program: Flame Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/meet-the-new-cyberespionageprogram-flame/16065.html May 31st, 2012

Researchers have discovered a massive piece of malware that seems to be yet another cyberweapon designed to target Iran and other Middle Eastern nations. The Philips Docking Speaker AS351 sports a compact design that suits any lifestyle and rooms. It claims to offer superb gaming sound effects and shielding technology that blocks mobile phone interference. With precise-tuned bass pipes, the speakers can deliver deep bass reproduction. It has battery or AC power option for music enjoyment anywhere, and supports Bluetooth wireless music streaming from Android devices. Usual Price: S$249 PC Show Price: TBA Philips SoundBar Home Theater with Ambisound HTS9140

Remember Stuxnet, the malware that has been called the first cyber weapon, designed specifically to target Iran’s nuclear enrichment program and possibly developed by hackers in the employ of Israel, the US, or another antiIranian nation? Well, say hello to its younger sister. Kaspersky Labs discovered and dubbed the malware “Flame.” Dwarfing Stuxnet in size, it is believed to be part of an ongoing, highly coordinated cyberespionage operation being run by some nation, though exactly which is unknown at this point. Though it obviously was not written by the same group that wrote Stuxnet, the complexity, geographic scope of infection, and behavior indicate that it is the work of a large organization, something on the level of a nation-state. This marks Flame as another piece in the growing arsenal of cyberweaponry and warfare. Early analysis of Flame indicates that its primary purpose is to spy on users of infected computers, stealing documents, conversations, and keystrokes, along with opening a backdoor to allow tweaks and new functionality or new pieces of malware to be sent remotely. Kaspersky has called it “one of the most complex threats ever discovered.” It contains over 20 megabytes (a MASSIVE amount of data for a piece of malware) with all of its modules included, including multiple libraries, SQLite3 databases, encryptions of various strengths, and 20 hot-swappable plug-ins that provide various functionality for the attackers. It even includes a strikingly unique choice of language; some of the code is written in LUA, a highly uncommon choice for malware.

The Philips SoundBar Home Theatre HTS9140 has a slim and premium design with high-quality brushed aluminum that looks to enhance your living space. Equipped with builtin Ambisound technology and Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD, it delivers high-fidelity surround sound and provide users with amazing listening experience. The SoundBar design is optimally fitted for 40-inch or larger flat TV, and it also features Full HD 3D Blu-ray for a truly immersive 3D movie experience. Usual Price: S$1,399 PC Show Price: TBA

It appears that Flame has been operating from as early as March 2010, but it has remained undetected by antivirus companies until recently. This is very interesting, especially considering the size of the package. Generally, the larger a piece of software, the easier it is to detect as malicious, though in this case, the malware remained undiscovered for more than two years. Clues have appeared that Flame may actually date back as far as 2007, around the same time Stuxnet and its sister weapon DuQu were being coded. Due to the size and complexity of the code, however, complete analysis may take years. (For comparison, Stuxnet took more than six months to fully analyze) Flame was discovered roughly two weeks ago when the UN International Telecommunications Union (ITU) asked Kaspersky to look into reports filed in April of computers from the Iranian Oil Ministry and the Iranian National Oil Company with malware which stole and deleted information 21

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from the machines. Researchers searched through their archive of automated reports, eventually putting together a picture of Flame that showed it infecting machines across the Middle East. It was dubbed Flame after one of the modules in the toolkit. Some of the capabilities include a module that turns on the internal microphone of the infected computer to record any conversation in the vicinity, a module that connects to nearby Bluetooth devices (if the computer is Bluetooth-capable) to siphon contact information from phones, and a module that grabs screenshots of activity such as messaging and email before sending them through a covert SSL channel to the C&C (command and control) servers. There is also a sniffer module that collects network packet information, sending usernames and password hashes back to the attacker, which can be used to hijack admin accounts or high-level access to other machines on the network. Because of its size, Flame transmits itself in pieces. The first piece is a 6 megabyte component containing around 6 modules, which are extracted, decompressed, decrypted, and written to various locations on the disk. The malware then connects to a C&C server to deliver information about the infected machine and receive further instructions. There are five hardcoded domains, and also an updatable list that new domains can be added to should the other domains be taken down or abandoned; while waiting, the malware sniffs traffic, takes screenshots, or performs whatever other action is needed by the attacker. Despite its similarity to Stuxnet and DuQu in target and implications, Flame doesn’t resemble either of those two in framework used, design, or functionality. Stuxnet and DuQu were compact and efficient, though still somewhat large by malware standards. Flame is absolutely massive due to its dormant capabilities which seem to be included to give the attacker options for other attack vectors after installation; compare its 20 MB to Stuxnet’s 500 KB. Only two specific things are similar between Flame and Stuxnet; everything else is entirely different. One of those similarities is an export function that allows the malware to be executed on the system. Also, it spreads through the autorun and .lnk vulnerabilities on the local machine, and the print spool vulnerability to spread on a local network. However, Flame does not spread itself. The propagation methods are disabled by default, and the USB exploit is disabled immediately after infecting a USB drive inserted into the computer. It’s likely that this is a measure taken to prevent the rapid, uncontrollable spread of the malware, lessening the likelihood of discovery. In comparison, Stuxnet’s rapid and widespread infection accelerated the discovery process in that malware’s case. It’s also possible that the propagation methods were enabled by default, but were turned off after the outing of Stuxnet. Researchers have yet to determine how an initial infection occurs before it begins to spread. There’s a possibility it’s using a zero-day exploit researchers have yet to find, because it is able to infect a fully patched machine running Windows 7.

Published by: VR-Zone

have been found to have been on machines in Europe on December 5th, 2007 and Dubai on April 28th, 2008. Kaspersky Labs estimates that Flame has infected around 1,000 machines. This might seem paltry, especially in comparison to the Flashback attack that affected more than 600,000 Macs around the world, though it’s obvious that this malware isn’t the usual cybercrime type, instead being specifically targeted to a certain area of the world. Each infection Kaspersky has found appears to have been specifically targeted, with no specific industry or system targeted in particular. In an attempt to throw researchers off their scent, the attackers manipulated the compilation date of some of the modules, making it appear that they were compiled in 1994 or 1995, when they’re using code that wasn’t released until 2010. There is no specific kill date coded into the malware, but a kill module can be sent to the system, which erases all trace of the malware from the system, including any screenshots or other data that’s been stored waiting to be sent to a server. Watch out for any stray blinking activity lights from your computer...

Possible FCC decision could make it easier for Apple to compete with cable TV providers Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/possible-fcc-decision-could-make-iteasier-for-apple-to-compete-with-cable-tv-providers/16068.html May 31st, 2012

The FCC (Federal Communications Commission) is considering a change in the definition of "multichannel video programming distributor", or MVPD. Such a move would make much easier for Apple to compete with pay TV providers in the case that they release a long rumored iTV. The FCC (Federal Communications Commission) is considering a change in the definition of "multichannel video programming distributor", or MVPD. Such a move would make much easier for Apple to compete with pay TV providers in the case that they release a long rumored iTV. Right now, MVPDs include cable providers such as DirecTV and Comcast. But with the advent of online video content sources, such as Hulu and Netflix, the FCC is thinking about broadening the definition of the term. Cable companies are urging the FCC not to decide too quickly - such a decision could completely disrupt the pay TV industry.

The earliest signs of Flame trace back to a computer in Iran on March 1st of 2010, but other unique files found in Flame

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Published by: VR-Zone

Today, 9to5mac released a supposed picture of the back plate of Apple's next iPhone. Later, they released higher resolution photos and enumerated some of the new aspects featured in the leaked plates. As frequently happens before the release of a new iPhone, the last few months have seen a buzz of leaks and rumors regarding the upcoming iPhone, which will likely be revealed in the fall of this year, alongside iOS 6. This year included the prominent rumor of a larger iPhone screen.

FCC logo If the FCC does change the term's definition, it would be very good news for Apple, in the case that they wanted to release a TV set, and their own channels to go with it. The way it is now, if Apple wanted to deliver their channels through a TV set, they would have to negotiate with each channel they wanted to deliver. Channels, not eager for consumers to abandon cable yet, would not give Apple an easy time, and therefore make things very costly. But if the FCC goes with this decision, then Apple won't have worry about negotiating with TV studios and nothing will prevent them from offering channels of their own just like regular cable providers. Nothing is certain at the moment, not with the FCC, nor Apple. While a smart television set from Apple has been rumored for a long time, and also mentioned as an idea by Steve Jobs, there has never been any official information about its development. If everything continues on the same course that it is going, TV will not be the same in the next decade. With so many new ways to access video content, cable providers are no longer exclusive options. In the case that Apple did release a smart TV, and the FCC did broaden the definition of 'MVPD', then the world would be well on the road to a completely revamped TV industry.

Alleged photos of iPhone 5 back released Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/alleged-photos-of-iphone-5-backreleased/16067.html May 31st, 2012

The photos posted today on 9to5mac feature both black and white versions of the next generation iPhone back. The black and white parts of the back are just trim, and most of it is manufactured out of metal. One interesting characteristic of this new back is the metal antenna band, which actually appears to be molded into the metal backplates. Apple has shown interest in unibody designs before, introducing unibody notebooks in 2008. Apple patent filings for unibody earbuds, and for a process to manufacture seamless device housings were also released this year. The authenticity of 9to5mac’s leak has been called into question by critics, as it seems to indicate that the headphone jack of the upcoming iPhone will actually be located in the bottom corner of the device, rather than the top. Such a change has never occurred in any of the iPhones, although this feature has existed in Apple's iPod touch. 9to5mac also included a picture of what they believe to be the next iPhone’s frame and screen. The screen included a centered FaceTime camera, and a relocated earpiece. The tech-blog believes from the photo of the alleged front screen that "Apple is definitely testing these units with the MicroSIM technology from the iPhone 4/4S". When released, the iPhone will come with iOS 6, and other new features such as a 3D Map application, LTE and an improved processor.

Will an Opera-facebook marriage end with a happy ending? Today, 9to5mac released a supposed picture of the back plate of Apple's next iPhone. Later, they released higher resolution photos and enumerated some of the new aspects featured in the leaked parts.

Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/will-an-opera-facebook-marriageend-with-a-happy-ending-/16075.html

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Published by: VR-Zone

May 31st, 2012

Facebook recently acquired Instagram for approximately $1 billion, and if the rumors are true then it might fork out another $1.4 billion to buy out Opera. Facebook recently acquired Instagram for approximately $1 billion, and if the rumors are true then it might fork out another $1.4 billion to buy out Opera. According to WSJ.com, Opera’s ad revenue tripled year on year in the first quarter, pocketing about $6.9 million— which constitutes 15% of the company’s total revenue. In a recent article on VR-Zone, we discussed that possibility of Facebook making a move at constructing a browser of its own.

Facebook’s IPO price was $38, but now it’s fluctuating in the low $30’s range. Will acquiring Opera and increasing its mobile presence help Facebook dig itself out of a hole? The tactic makes sense, but if Facebook’s execution is flawed then stock value will surely continue to dip. Whether Facebook intend to take a big stake in the mobile advertising market, or develop an internet browser for the masses, it can take a page or two out of Google’s Chrome success. Google proved that a company with almost no presence in the internet browser market can become a heavyweight contender. Facebook shares one main advantage that Google held when Chrome came to be—that is, Facebook and Google has a lot of user information. Developing a browser for the masses requires massive amounts of user data, and Facebook does not lack in that department.

Samsung's new Chromebook and Chromebox launched Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/samsung-s-new-chromebook-andchromebox-launched/16074.html May 31st, 2012

Despite Opera’s small market share, the Opera Mobile browser seems to be a popular choice among mobile users. Opera monetizes from its browser by selling ad space on its home screen, and if Facebook acquires Opera it will have access to an immense amount of user information as well as connections to advertisers. WSJ.com reported about 168.8 million users currently uses the Opera Mobile browser. Furthermore, Opera entices users to continue using its browser because it is “speedier” than its competitors. Similar to the Amazon’s Silk browser, Opera’s browser displays a page after it compresses the contents through its own server.

Although we've already seen Samsung's new Chromebox, it's now official alongside a new Chromebook, both featuring upgraded hardware compared to the first generation of Chromebooks. To go with the new products, Google has also upgraded its Chrome OS to version 19 which adds support for a fair new features, least not Google Drive and remote desktop support, in beta. Although we've already seen Samsung's new Chromebox, it's now official alongside a new Chromebook, both featuring upgraded hardware compared to the first generation of Chromebooks. To go with the new products, Google has also upgraded its Chrome OS to version 19 which adds support for a fair new features, least not Google Drive and remote desktop support, in beta.

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Published by: VR-Zone

weighs in at 1.48kg and the battery is said to be good for six hours of usage.

Common features between the new Samsung Series 5 550 Chromebook and the Chromebox is an Intel Celeron processor and 4GB of RAM, as well as a 16GB SanDisk mSATA SSD. Not exactly mind-blowing hardware specifications, but considering the previous generation of Chromebooks only sported a dual core Atom processor and 2GB of RAM, it's a pretty big step up.

The two systems are far from identical though, as due to the more expensive nature of the Chromebook, the Series 5 550 only comes with a 1.3GHz dual core Celeron 867 processor whereas the Chromebox gets a faster 1.9GHz dual core Celeron B840. Admittedly, the Celeron 867 in a much cooler running chip with a TDP of a mere 17W, compared to 35W for the Celeron B840, but as neither model sports turbo boost support, we'd rather have seen the faster chip in the Chromebook as well.

The Chromebox on the other hand is something of an odd mix, as despite fairly low-end hardware, it sports a pair of DisplayPort connectors (both DP++ compatible), a DVI port, six USB 2.0 ports, Gigabit Ethernet, a combined headset jack, 802.11a/b/g/n Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 3.0. According to some of the early reviews it also has a spare mini PCI Express slot internally. That said, there seems to be a higher-end SKU with a 2.5GHz Core i5-2540M CPU which could for an interesting compact build if you upgrade the SSD.

Price wise the Series 5 550 will set you back US$449 for the Wi-Fi only version, whereas the 3G model in the US adds another US$100 to the total cost, not taking into account the data costs beyond the included 100MB of free data. The standard Chromebox retail for an affordable US$329, but the Core i5 model isn't nearly as cheap at US$499.99. We're not sure Google's Chrome OS is the way to, mostly due to the connected nature of the OS and as soon as you don't have internet connectivity, your device becomes mostly useless, unless you're only relying on what Google calls "offlinecapable web apps". Samsung has managed to come up with some attractive looking hardware though, which might be enough to win some customers over.

Windows 8 Chinese Preview build 8400 leak Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/windows-8-chinese-previewbuild-8400-leak/16073.html May 31st, 2012

The Series 5 550 also comes with 802.11a/b/g/n W-Fi, Gigabit Ethernet, a pair of USB 2.0 ports, a memory card reader, a DisplayPort (DP++ compatible), combined headset jack, a 720p webcam and optional 3G connectivity. It also sports a 12.1-inch display with 1280x800 resolution, an island-style keyboard and a large button-less track pad. It

A preview version of Windows 8 has been leaked onto the internet. The Chinese Windows 8 preview version, tagged as the “8400 build�, have been making its way around forums and torrent sites. If you have tried out the consumer review version that Microsoft released a while back, then you may 25

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notice the app layout of the desktop. The 8400 build reveals relatively small changes to the previous consumer review build.

A preview version of Windows 8 has been leaked onto the internet. The Chinese Windows 8 preview version, tagged as the “8400 build”, have been making its way around forums and torrent sites. If you have tried out the consumer review version that Microsoft released a while back, then you may notice the app layout of the desktop. Build 8400 reveals relatively small changes to the previous consumer review build.

Published by: VR-Zone

ARCTIC (formerly known as Arctic Cooling) has been a leading cooling products manufacturer ever since 2001. Today the company offers a wide variety of cooling solutions for CPUs, graphics cards and other components. However, even though ARCTIC is a popular manufacturer among enthusiasts, they did not limit their lineup to high end products alone. Today we are going to review the Alpine 11 PLUS, a budget-class CPU cooler designed mainly as an alternative to stock coolers and as an option for system builders and OEMs. ARCTIC (formerly known as Arctic Cooling) has been a leading cooling products manufacturer ever since 2001. Today the company offers a wide variety of cooling solutions for CPUs, graphics cards and other components. However, even though ARCTIC is a popular manufacturer among enthusiasts, they did not limit their lineup to high end products alone. Today we are going to review the Alpine 11 PLUS, a budget-class CPU cooler designed mainly as an alternative to stock coolers and as an option for system builders and OEMs.

Serenade using the Futulele Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/serenade-using-thefutulele/16071.html May 31st, 2012

Looking into starting a band but don’t have the money to invest in a Les Paul or a Roland Keyboard? How about buying an iPad and downloading an instrument app? Another instrument app has officially arrived and it’s called the Futulele—a ukulele derivative. The Fututele has been in development for a while, but a refined version hasn’t been seen until now.

The 8400 build is reported to have updated Windows Metro 8 apps, boot screen, cursors, wallpapers, and some features that provide for a better experience for multiple monitor users. Currently, there hasn’t been any report of an English Preview version leak yet. Microsoft announced that it will release an official Windows 8 Preview version the first week of June, and they are due to give a keynote at Computex on June 6th—hence, we might find out more about an official release.

Arctic Cooling Alpine 11 PLUS CPU Cooler Review Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/arctic-cooling-alpine-11-plus-cpucooler-review/16072.html May 31st, 2012

Looking into starting a band but don’t have the money to invest in a Les Paul or a Roland Keyboard? How about buying an iPad and downloading an instrument app? Another instrument app has officially arrived and it’s called the Futulele—a ukulele derivative. The Fututele has been in development for a while, but a refined version hasn’t been seen until now. The ukulele app has many features including, but not limited to, max. 132 chords, adjustable chorus, delay, EQ and reverb, and real time recording of the tunes you’re playing. The Fukulele app is decked out with a Hawaiian theme that includes a few flowers on the screen. For five bucks, you can be the next digital Jason Mraz.

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Apple's multitouch patents under attack Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/apple-s-multitouch-patents-underattack/16069.html May 31st, 2012

Two of Apple’s most important patents are under attack from an unknown party. U.S. Patent 7,469,381 and 7,479,949 are patents related to the multitouch software that Apple uses in its products.

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U.S. Patent Application No. 2005/0012723 on a "system and method for a portable multimedia client", assigned to Move Mobile Systems (named inventor: Matt Pallakoff) U.S. Patent Application Publication No. 2003/0063073 on a "touch panel system and method for distinguishing multiple touch inputs" (assigned to a group of individual inventors; first-named inventor: Bernard O. Geaghan It’s not strange for companies to go after each other’s patents, but usually the names of the two parties are known. In this particular case, however, we don’t know who is making a move against Apple. One theory is that Google is behind the filing, and it’s a legitimate theory. Apple has been using patents ‘381 and ‘949 to impose limitations on top Android manufacturers such as Samsung, Motorola, and HTC. Not surprisingly, everyday there’s a new patent war, but as it stands, many tech giants need to carve out a stake in the “multitouch” department to keep their devices competitive. It’s unlikely that ‘949 will be an Apple’s exclusive in the future since it mainly deals with the tolerance level and angle of the initial touch movement on a touch interface.

Two of Apple’s most important patents are under attack from an unknown party. U.S. Patent 7,469,381 and 7,479,949 are patents related to the multitouch software that Apple uses in its products. According to fosspatents.com, these are the reexamination requests of the patents by the anonymous party. 7,469,381: PCT Publication No. WO 03/081458 on "controlling content display", by AOL/Luigi Lira, published on October 2, 2003 U.S. Patent No. 7,786,975 on a "continuous scrolling list with acceleration"; inventors are Bas Ording, Scott Forstall, Greg Christie, Stephen O. Lemay and Imran Chaudhri PCT Publication No. WO 01/029702, which later resulted in U.S. Patent No. 7,152,210 on a "device and method of browsing an image collection"; assigned to Philips (named inventors: Elise van den Hoven, Josephus Eggen)

As seen in Figure 35, the patent cites the angles that coincide with the touchscreen behaviors. Any manufacturer can deviate from the angles shown in Figure 35 to mitigate the patent’s specificities. An in depth conversation of the two patents under examination can be found here.

7,479,949: U.S. Patent Application Publication No. 2002/036618 on a "method and apparatus for detecting and interpreting path of designated position", assigned to Canon (named inventors: Masanori Wakai and Satomi Kayano) U.S. Patent Application Publication No. 2006/0101354 on "gesture inputs for a portable display device", assigned to Nintendo (named inventors: Hideyuki Hashimoto and Shigetoshi Kitayama) 27

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Published by: VR-Zone

VR-Zone.com | Tech News for the Geeks! VR-Zone | Stuff for the Geeks is a bi-weekly publication covering the latest gadgets and stuff for the geeks.

High End Ivy Bridge and Haswell: Intel to trade TDP for performance Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/high-end-ivy-bridge-and-haswellintel-to-trade-tdp-for-performance/16047.html June 2nd, 2012

In the recently launched Sandy Bridge "Xeon E5" series, the top bin part, E5-2687W, was 'allowed' 150W TDP, compared to the 130W TDP of its desktop cousin, Core i7-3960X. Will the TDP increase continue? On server/workstation parts seemingly yes. What about the desktops then? Remember how the 8-core die of the Core i7-3960X had to be limited to 6 active cores to fit the 130W TDP standard high end desktop limit while keeping competitive frequency? Well, to provide similar competitive frequency while keeping all 8 cores turned on - for the far more lucrative workstation market where you charge twice per pop - Intel went to 150W TDP per that same Socket 2011, for the first time. This enabled a 3.1 GHz 8 core part, which as of today is the fastest X86 CPU. Will Intel continue to increase TDP limits on its high end CPUs? The customer pressure in scientific and technical computing to do so is there, and growing. Often, increasing the frequency - and therefore TDP - is the only tool left standing after all the I/O and compiler optimisations for extra performance are done, and adding more cores is not an option in many apps that just don't scale to more cores or, worse, charge license fees per core. Workstations and technical computing servers are the standard example, in a way similar to top-notch gaming rigs in this sense. So, the sources pointed out to us that, over the Ivy Bridge and Haswell generations, there will be the high end CPU TDP increase across the board to 150W and then 165W - and here we're talking also about generic high end MP servers with 4 sockets or more, including the 'E7 v2 (Ivy Bridge-EX)' and 'E7 v3 (Haswell-EX)' generations. This is a noticeable jump over 135 watts allowed up to now, and could signal even more TDP for the workstation-specific 'W' parts.

For instance, the general expectations - at the same TDP level - is that Intel would provide roughly 40% performance increase when going from Sandy Bridge EP to Ivy Bridge EP Xeon E5 series. The first 25% of that would obviously come by jumping from 8 to 10 cores with the associated cache increase to 25 MB L3. The next 10% on top of that 25% (i.e. extra 12% from the base line) would come from the frequency increase - for instance, the successor to the 2.9 GHz Xeon E5-2690 would be a 3.2 GHz 10-core part in the same 135W TDP bracket. The remaining few % is, of course, minor CPU enhancements and DDR3-1866 server memory support. Similarly, in the 150W workstation field, we'd get a 3.4 GHz 10-core part replacing the current 3.1 GHz 8-core one. Now, what if the Ivy Bridge EP was to follow the same general server 150W limit as its 4-socket 15 core cousin, the Ivy Bridge EX, and add the same extra percentage to the workstation parts? The extra 10% TDP would comfortably give us some 7% higher frequency, enabling 3.4 GHz 10-core server and 3.6 GHz 165W workstation 10-core parts. So, if Turbo is used constantly, one would have 10 cores per socket running on 4 GHz effective frequency in a workstation - no overclocking needed. Not bad... Watch out Haswell server parts then - 165W TDP limit is expected there for high end server parts, implying possible 180W TDP for the Haswell workstation parts, if Intel decides to follow the trend. So, we'd be guaranteed some nice GHz figures there, on top of Haswell execution enhancements. What about the high end enthusiast desktop market then? For now, it seems, the 'recommended' 130W TDP there stays for the time to come - it may be just too expensive to justify extra validation work here, compared to the highly lucrative server and workstation markets. However, as long as the board makers go along, we can still push the unlocked 'X' or 'K' parts to sky high beyond 200W power - just without warranty...

Computex Best Choice Awards 2012 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/computex-best-choiceawards-2012/16134.html June 2nd, 2012

Alongside Computex – which kicks off on Tuesday next week – there are a fair few awards being given out and one of them is the Best Choice Awards which took place this week. The products will be on display at Computex, but we got an 1

June 2nd, 2012

Published by: VR-Zone

early look and some hands on time with some of the winning products, as well as some other interesting ones that didn't quite make it. Alongside Computex – which kicks off on Tuesday next week – there are a fair few awards being given out and one of them is the Best Choice Awards which took place this week. The products will be on display at Computex, but we got an early look and some hands on time with some of the winning products, as well as some other interesting ones that didn't quite make it. We won't be listing all the winning products, but we've added a link to the Best Choice Awards website which provides a full list of winners in all the different categories. A lot of big, familiar companies like Acer, AMD, Asus, MSI, Nvidia, Promise and Synology scored awards, some of them even in multiple categories. Sadly we didn't get a chance to have a play with everything on display, but we did spot a few new bits of hardware and some interesting demos. First up we got a quick play with Acer's CloudMobile which sports a 1.5GHz Qualcomm MSM8260A SoC, 1GB of RAM and at least in terms of the model we saw, 8GB of internal storage, although there's a microSD card slot for further expansion. It also has a 720p display and although we didn't get a chance to benchmark the handset, it felt very snappy. Other features include 2GB of RAM as standard – with support for up to 4GB – a 320 or 500GB hard drive, two USB 3.0 ports, four front USB 2.0 ports, a memory card reader, a pair of audio jacks with S/PDIF out support, an HDMI and D-sub connector, Gigabit Ethernet and built in Wi-Fi. Asus is for some reason targeting the business market with this system; although we have a feeling it'll be more popular as a second or third home PC.

Intel Announces Breakthrough in Plastic Chassis Design, Makes Cheaper Ultrabooks Possible Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/intel-announces-breakthrough-inplastic-chassis-design-makes-cheaper-ultrabooks-possible/16133.html June 2nd, 2012

The rubber clad back of the handset felt good to the touch, although we're curious as to how well this will last long term. The CloudMobile might not be as svelte as some of its competitors, but that might not be a huge downside, as not all of us like ultra-thin phones that you can barely hold in your hand. It looks as if the CloudMobile will ship with Android 4.0.4, or at least that was what was installed on the unit on display. Next up we have a new nettop from Asus, the EB1033 which sports a new, even slimmer design. This is a strange little beast, as it sports an Atom D2550 or D2700 CPU depending on the market, as well as a GeForce 610M discrete GPU. According to the Asus representative on location the reason for the Nvidia GPU is that Asus couldn't get the system certified for Windows 7 due to poor Intel graphics drivers, something we know won't be solved until Windows 8 arrives.

Intel's all-out effort to make Ultrabook the mainstream personal computing device is faced with several hurdles, pricing being a big one. The ultra-sleek notebooks need rigid materials, turning manufacturers to monolithic aluminum chassis, driving up costs. Intel did its partners' homework, by achieving what it calls a breakthrough in structurallyrigid plastics and chassis design, which will help make the Ultrabook more affordable. In its latest Chip Shot (micro press-release), Intel announced a breakthrough in chassis design and structurally-rigid plastics, which can help Ultrabook manufacturers make chassis that are just as slim and durable as those made out 2

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of expensive materials, such as aluminum. Intel's engineers deviced a reference-design Ultrabook chassis, which is a fraction of the cost, while being equivalent in "quality" (read: durability), to chassis that are machined out of blocks of aluminum, or die-cast metal.

Published by: VR-Zone June 2nd, 2012

Sources in Apple's supply chain pointed out to DigiTimes that it would be "highly difficult" to relocate Apple's production lines to the United States. Currently, almost all of Apple's products are actually assembled in Asia. Sources in Apple's supply chain pointed out to Digitimes that it would be "highly difficult" to relocate Apple's production lines to the United States. Currently, almost all of Apple's products are actually assembled in Asia. Apple CEO Tim Cook has indicated that he would like to see the company’s products manufactured in the United States. But this might be harder to do than it sounds.

(Image Credit: audiovisualjunkie / Flickr (CC)) Intel's breakthrough doesn't involve creation of newer materials than those widely available today, but 'structural reduction analysis' of the common Ultrabook chassis design, which achieves added strength to chassis designed using existing plastics. The way we understand it, Intel may have found ways to reinfoce sheets of ABS plastic that make up the body and bezels. Intel's claim of the new plastic chassis being just as durable as metal ones is a particularly interesting one.

Assuming Apple decided to start assembling their products in the U.S, it would be extremely costly to import components from overseas. In addition, since wages in the U.S are higher than the wages paid to Apple’s Asian laborers, this would make such a transition even more difficult financially.

Intel announced that it will share the results of its work with its ecosystem partners (Ultrabook manufacturers), and products implementing the new innovation could be out by 2013, after further refinements. As long as it drives down costs, and doesn't affect rigidity, we're not complaining.

Online democracy? Facebook letting users vote on privacy policy Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/online-democracy-facebook-lettingusers-vote-on-privacy-policy/16130.html June 2nd, 2012

Facebook is going to allow its user base of nearly 1 billion people to vote on changes in its privacy policy.

Apple's Tim Cook would like iDevices assembled in the USA Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/apple-s-tim-cook-would-likeidevices-assembled-in-the-usa/16128.html

Cook in a Foxconn factory "Since moving a supply chain from one place to another takes time, while enterprises are mainly concerned about costs, if there is no profitability in moving, the related upstream component makers are unlikely to follow Apple in moving to the U.S.," said the Digitimes report. According to a report in The New York Times, the advantages to having Assembly lines in close proximity to component manufacturers extend beyond price savings - the paper noted that there are many highly skilled laborers who work with "breathtaking" speed and flexibility which could not be matched by American factories. Cook brought up the fact that some Apple components, like the iPhone’s custom ARM-processor and Gorilla Glass are manufactured in the United States. But, he mentioned that there are few actual tool and die makers in the country. "There's an intense focus on the final assembly. Could that be done in the U.S.? I sure hope so," said Cook. "But look, how many tool and die makers do you know in America? I could ask them, nationwide, to come here tonight and we couldn't fill [a few hundred seats in] this room." Apple has fallen under heavy criticism for its poorly paid workers in China’s Foxconn factory, which manufactures some of Apple’s products. 3

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Published by: VR-Zone

If Apple really took the plunge, and went for domestic manufacturing, they could erase this bad publicity by properly paying properly worked employees, with proper oversight to ensure fair working conditions and payment. It could also add a dash of patriotism to the company's image, which could work favorably for it's reputation in the United States.

Marvel’s intention to stir up more media attention for their Avengers may or may not be the main motive, but everyone needs a little R&R after a long day of work. According to Dan Cook—Psychological Support Coordinator contactor for NASA—films, books, and music “help keep the crew connected to home, which is a huge morale boost while being away for long periods of time.”

But, reality is reality. There are clearly hurdles that Apple would have to overcome in the meantime. It is up to the company to decide whether or not they see the disadvantages as short term, and the benefits worthy enough of taking the risk.

Currently there are six crew members on the ISS consisting of 2 NASA, 1 European, and 3 Russian Astronauts. I hope they have popcorn!

Marvel sends "The Avengers" into space to the International Space Station (ISS)

New UICC (SIM card) form factor is 40% smaller than current design Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/new-uicc-sim-card-form-factoris-40-smaller-than-current-design/16131.html June 2nd, 2012

Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/marvel-sends-the-avengers-intospace-to-the-international-space-station-iss-/16132.html June 2nd, 2012

If the ads, magazines, comics, and movie weren’t enough for Marvel to promote their “Avengers,” then what is enough? Apparently, Marvel wants to take it a notch higher than Earth—literally—and send The Avengers into space.

After the 55th ETSI Technical Committee (ETC) meeting in Osaka Japan on June 1st, the committee has agreed to a new form factor for the UICC, or SIM card. The new SIM card form factor will have all the same functionality as the previous, but the ETC announced that the new form factor takes into consideration the amount of space the SIM card occupy in phones. In the fourth form factor (4FF), the SIM card will be 40% smaller than current design; measuring at 12.3mm wide x 8.8mm high x 0.67mm thick. A new SIM card design doesn’t mean that the new form factor won’t be backward compatible. It will be packaged and delivered in a form that will fit current phone models as well as future models.

If the ads, magazines, comics, and movie weren’t enough for Marvel to promote their “Avengers,” then what is enough? Apparently, Marvel wants to take it a notch higher than Earth—literally—and send The Avengers into space. Marvel Studios recently announced that they will be working with NASA to uplink the film The Avengers for astronauts on the International Space Station (ISS) to enjoy. This is not a mere Marvel charity screening; it is Marvel’s way of associating itself with one of the most respected space exploration organizations. “The studio is privileged to share ‘Marvel’s The Avengers’ with those up in space exploring the universe. A special thanks goes to NASA for utilizing their incredible technology to make this special screening miles above us in space happen. It is a screening that would make Tony Stark envious," says Louis D’Esposito, Marvel Studio’s CoPresident and Executive Producer of The Avengers.

There were more than one proposals of the new SIM’s form factor. Apple Inc., Nokia, and RIM presented their designs and it seems like Apple has won ETSI’s approval. Apple’s nano-SIM design is 12.3mm x 8.8mm, and thus it’s a clear match to ETSI’s formal statement regarding the new SIM card standard.

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Facebook may acquire Research In Motion to develop smartphone Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/facebook-may-acquire-research-inmotion-to-develop-smartphone/16129.html June 2nd, 2012

Before 2006, Facebook was a college dropout’s project, but six years later that same Facebook might take over Research In Motion (RIM)—a multibillion dollar company. Facebook recently bought out Instagram for about $1 billion, and then rumored to also be in the process of buying out Opera for $1.4 billion. RIM’s market cap is about $5.2 billion—that’s five times Instagram’s check!

Published by: VR-Zone

Facebook’s current business structure is not sustainable, and an entry into hardware development will help boost investor’s confidence. Surely we have seen this scenario before for other companies, and in most instances it seems to work. Microsoft started out as a software company, and down the road the Xbox was born. Google was just a search algorithm, but now it’s involved in just about all aspects of hardware development in many sectors. If the expert’s prediction is true—that, Facebook will acquire RIM—then the world may see another smartphone platform in the making. The BlackBerry 10 may turn into a “Facebook-enhanced” smartphone. Facebook can capitalize on its advertising dominance through apps and other features of a smartphone, especially on a phone that they develop themselves. So long BlackBerry 10. Hello FaceBerry Uno.

Crucial Adrenaline 50GB Caching SSD Review Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/crucial-adrenaline-50gb-cachingssd-review/16127.html June 2nd, 2012

Before 2006, Facebook was a college dropout’s project, but six years later that same Facebook might take over Research In Motion (RIM)—a multibillion dollar company. Facebook recently bought out Instagram for about $1 billion, and then rumored to also be in the process of buying out Opera for $1.4 billion. RIM’s market cap is about $5.2 billion—that’s five times Instagram’s check! One of the major factors that may have contributed to Facebook’s IPO disappointment is that Facebook doesn’t have anything tangible. Eighty-two percent of Facebook’s revenues come from advertising, and that alone may have prevented investors from snatching up Facebook’s stocks. “Facebook is under pressure from investors and needs a long term project,” according to Paul Amsellem— Mobile Network Group’s marketing expert.

Crucial, the renowned European manufacturer of memory modules, was amongst first companies to have released a commercial SSD. The firm is a subsidiary company of Micron, the microchip developer and manufacturer. Both the company and the technology have come a long way since then, with Crucial now offering a full line-up of SSD drives for any kind of user. Today we are going to have a look at the Adrenaline, a 50GB caching SSD based on the popular Dataplex caching software. Crucial, the renowned European manufacturer of memory modules, was amongst first companies to have released a commercial SSD. The firm is a subsidiary company of Micron, the microchip developer and manufacturer. Both the company and the technology have come a long way since then, with Crucial now offering a full line-up of SSD drives for any kind of user. Today we are going to have a look at the Adrenaline, a 50GB caching SSD based on the popular Dataplex caching software. Crucial offers little to no information regarding the drive’s specifications and features in their website, except from the usual marketing page. Two PDFs are available, one with a simple installation guide and one explaining the terms of the 3 year long warranty. For users who still do not understand what a “Caching SSD” is and how it works, Crucial offers a short explanation: How Crucial Adrenaline works. A simple upgrade that allows you to keep your existing hard drive, Crucial Adrenaline comprises a 50GB Crucial m4 SSD, 3.5" adapter bracket, SATA cable, and Dataplex™ caching software**. The solution intelligently places, or "caches", the most frequently needed files (active data) on the SSD and leaves less frequently used files (inactive data)

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Published by: VR-Zone

on the hard drive. The result? Faster application load times and increased boot speed.

location capability—so there’s no reason not to believe that Apple has re-vamped the rest of their app inventory.

An easy upgrade.

Another significant upgrade that many Apple fans need is the multitasking. Multitasking is very hardware dependent, usually needing upwards of 1GB RAM or more to be efficient and feasible. According to recent rumors, the iPhone 5 will come with at least 1GB of ram and an ARM CPU. We don’t know how many cores Apple intend to deliver, but a dual core is a must if the iPhone wants to cover multitasking.

Because Crucial Adrenaline works with your existing hard drive, there’s no need to transfer files or programs. Simply connect the SSD to your motherboard with a standard SATA cable, start the computer, and then install the Dataplex caching software. Once the software is installed and the system has been rebooted, the software seamlessly integrates your existing hard drive and Crucial Adrenaline into a single storage system. Fully automated, the software then runs in the background and requires no user management.

iOS 6 apps will "deliver groundbreaking enhancements" Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/ios-6-apps-will-delivergroundbreaking-enhancements-/16126.html June 2nd, 2012

In ten days, Apple is due to make a keynote at the WWDC in San Francisco, so we may find out more about these “revamped” features in iOS 6.

PowerA to unveil Android mobile gaming system at E3 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/powera-to-unveil-android-mobilegaming-system-at-e3/16125.html June 2nd, 2012

PowerA will unveil an Android-powered hand-held gaming system at E3 next week, marking the latest move into the growing field of mobile gaming. Apple’s upcoming iPhone 5 will have a slimmer body, and a bigger screen, but also a new iOS. A source close to Apple has revealed that the iOS core aesthetic will remain intact, while the iOS apps coding has been rewritten to match the new iPhone’s hardware.

PowerA will unveil an Android-powered hand-held gaming system at E3 next week, marking the latest move into the growing field of mobile gaming.

Apple’s upcoming iPhone 5 will have a slimmer body, and a bigger screen, but also a new iOS. A source close to Apple has revealed that the iOS core aesthetic will remain intact, while the iOS apps coding has been rewritten to match the new iPhone’s hardware.

The MOGA Mobile Gaming System is a combination of a gaming controller, software development kit, and the MOGA Pivot game library app.

“Basically, you wont know it is iOS 6 until you launch app,” the source told idownloadblog.com. Speculation is that the iPhone 5’s larger screen size (rumored 4’’) will require some modification to current apps anyway. Hence, it is not that Apple is inclined to tear up their 350K + apps, but rather it needs to be done. Since it needs to be done, why not make it better?

The MOGA Controller allows users to connect their Android 2.3+ devices, both smartphones and tablets, and play games with all the features one would expect, including dual analog sticks, two shoulder buttons, four action buttons, and home, start and select buttons. It is also pocket-sized and connects via Bluetooth, removing the necessity of cumbersome wires. Phones are clipped onto the controller to provide the screen and computing power behind the games. A larger controller will also be released.

The source claims that the re-written apps will “deliver groundbreaking enhancements.” The Maps app certainly looks like it took a page or two out of Google’s Map app—3D 6

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The system's launch titles will include N.O.V.A. 3 – Near Orbit Vanguard Alliance, Six-Guns, Dungeon Hunter 3, Painkiller: Purgatory HD, Duke Nukem 3D, Sky Gamblers: Rise of Glory, PAC-MAN, Virtua Tennis Challenge, Sonic The Hedgehog 4 Episode II, Atari’s Greatest Hits (including Centipede, Asteroids and Battlezone) and Mike V: Skateboard Party. The MOGA Mobile Gaming System will be available in the second half of the year.

EpicGear CompoXite Gaming Mousepad Revealed

Published by: VR-Zone

Measuring 380 x 270 mm, with a thickness of 3 mm, the CompoXite uses a non-directional 3D-textured surface pattern, which gives optical mouse sensors uniform tracking in all directions (fig. 1, below). Further, it is HDST-optimized (a high-precision laser+optical tracking technology). Its surface weave pattern has uniform gaps between threads which reveal a secondary neon-orange silicon layer to the HDST sensor, which then get picked up to enhance tracking resolution (fig. 2, below). EpicGear addressed the issue of the mouse cable rubbing against the edge of the mousepad, adding friction and affecting control, by designing the edges of the CompoXite to be curved (fig. 3, below). Lastly, the bottommost layer of the mousepad, which makes contact with the surface below (a desk or a table), is made up of a special silicon material that ensures maximum traction.

Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/epicgear-compoxite-gamingmousepad-revealed/16123.html June 2nd, 2012

EpicGear, the emerging gaming peripherals company behind the Meduza gaming mouse, and HybridPad, plans to launch a fleet of new products, at this year's Computex event. These include its first keyboard, named DeZimator, and a new mouse-accessory named Skorpious. It also plans to make additions to its mousepad lineup, with the CompoXite series mousepads. We got a bunch of pictures. EpicGear's newest mouse-pad, the CompoXite, keeps is design focus on two elements: control and endurance. It appears to be designed for high-precision mouse movements using HDST mice (such as the Meduza), making it ideal for FPS snipers.

Moving on to the endurance part, EpicGear's CompoXite, like most high-end mousepads, consists of several layers. The real measure of the product's durability is not in the layers staying intact, without tearing apart; but with the layers maintaining their adhesion with each other. While most mousepad makers use glues and epoxies to bind the various layers, EpicGear sealed them in place, using hightemperature and compression to melt the fabric and silicon layer, forming a heat-seal (fig. 4, below). Lastly, you don't have to worry about damage caused by your beer Diet Double Dew spills, as the fabric has a fluid-repellent finish (fig. 5, below).

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Published by: VR-Zone

The Kinect has proved a popular alternative to Nintendo's Wii console, but it has also become a major tool outside of gaming. It has been considered for home security and is even being used to help dock satellites in space.

EpicGear plans to unveil the CompoXite HDST-enhanced mousepad at Computex, and launch it to the market some time in August. We're just getting started with our exclusive EpicGear coverage. Stay Tuned!

Doctors trial Kinect for surgery Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/doctors-trial-kinect-forsurgery/16124.html June 2nd, 2012

Doctors are trialling Microsoft's Kinect camera and software to help with surgeries, further expanding the uses of the motion tracking device beyond console gaming. Doctors are trialling Microsoft's Kinect camera and software to help with surgeries, further expanding the uses of the motion tracking device beyond console gaming. St. Thomas' Hospital in London, in association with Microsoft Research and Lancaster University, is testing the Kinect's gesture controls and voice commands with its surgeons carrying out keyhole surgery, allowing the team to interact with a computer that shows a 3D image of the part of the body that is being operated on. The surgeons have responded positively to the technology, calling it “easy to use.” Traditionally a surgeon would have to shout commands across the room to someone who would operate the computer with a keyboard and mouse, but the new approach gives greater control and provides less disruption, and also prevents contamination that is possible from touching computer peripherals during an operation.

This latest use in surgical theatres could become the norm within the next 10 to 15 years, according to John Brennan, president of the British Society for Endovascular Therapy.

Google registers .google, .docs, .lol and other domains Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/google-registers-.google-.docs-.loland-other-domains/16122.html June 2nd, 2012

Google has registered a large number of top-level domain names, including trademarks like .google, names relating to core business products like .docs, and stranger choices like .lol. Google has registered a large number of top-level domain names, including trademarks like .google, names relating to core business products like .docs, and stranger choices like .lol. Most websites use fairly generic domain extensions, like .com, which accounts for nearly 50 percent of websites out there. Other popular ones include .net, .org, and ones that relate to the country of origin, such as .co.uk for the UK and .sg or .com.sg for Singapore. Domain registry firm ICANN has introduced a program where a wider variety of words can be used for these top-level domains. Google is one of the first major technology business to jump on this bandwagon, dividing domain registrations into four main categories: trademarks (.google), core business domains (.docs), user experience improvement domains (.youtube), and “interesting and creative” domains (.lol).

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The problem with some of these is that they make domain names longer to type and could end up causing confusion for finding websites. For example, does Google plan to have google.google or youtube.youtube? We expect not, but it may use its new acquisitions to make it known what its products are, so instead of google.com/music, it might be music.google. The fourth category is interesting, as it could give Google a bit of a monopoly on generic internet terms, like the “laugh out loud” acronym “lol” that it registered. What it plans to use this and similar domain extensions for is anyone's guess. Google has promised that security and abuse prevention are a high priority with these new top-level domains, and it will work with all ICANN-accredited registrars and brand owners to develop rights protection mechanisms. “We’re just beginning to explore this potential source of innovation on the web, and we are curious to see how these proposed new TLDs will fare in the existing TLD environment,” said Vint Cerf, Chief Internet Evangelist for Google and one of the fathers of the internet. “By opening up more choices for Internet domain names, we hope people will find options for more diverse—and perhaps shorter— signposts in cyberspace.

Judge Rules Oracle APIs Not Copyrightable Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/judge-rules-oracle-apis-notcopyrightable/16121.html June 2nd, 2012

Judge Alsup has ruled that the entire infringement point in the case between Oracle and Google was moot, as the Java APIs in question were not copyrightable, and therefor were open to use by anybody for free. This decision sets a landmark precedent in software law and copyright law, and will surely be tested in appeal.

Published by: VR-Zone

It has been more than seven weeks since the lawsuit between Oracle and Google began, but the question at the heart of that case, whether or not the structure, sequence, and organization (SSO) of the 37 Java APIs that were used could be copyrighted, has finally been answered. The presiding judge has concluded that a partial verdict that Google infringed on the SSO is invalid as the SSO is not copyrightable, though this decision could be overturned on appeal. This means that Google doesn’t have to worry about an injunction, or ban, against their Android operating system for at least a couple years. If this decision is overturned on appeal, then the question of whether or not Google’s use of the APIs is protected under the fair use defense will have to be determined either by a new jury or by a judicial ruling; Google argues that a new jury being selected means that they would have to reevaluate the infringement, which would cause an even longer delay. For now, Google’s seemingly rash decision to defend itself in court has paid off; it gets away scot-free (for a few years, at least). Few if any other companies would have taken on the risks Google did with this decision. The proverbial jury is still out on this case, at least until Oracle appeals the decision, but Google has more immediate IP litigation worries relating to a long list of Android-related lawsuits against Google, Motorola (a newly-acquired subsidiary), and other device makers, such as Samsung and HTC. Two weeks ago, a US trade agency ordered an import ban on Motorola’s (now Google’s) Android devices, and less than a week later a German court ordered a permanent injunction on the same devices. It would be understandable for the jurors, who just spent seven weeks of their life missing work and being reimbursed far below the minimum wage, to ask why the judge couldn’t have decided the copyrightable issue firest, and saved them all the hassle. The reason Judge Alsup (the presiding judge) waited until the infringement trial was over was because the judge knew from the start that any decision on the copyrightability of the API SSO would face a huge risk for appeal and overturning. He had already looked into the issue last year when he denied Google a motion for summary judgment, and he certainly wouldn’t have put the question before a jury had he been completely certain of the ruling he was planning to give. Throughout the trial, Judge Alsup showed nothing but consideration for the jury, even telling Google and Oracle that, should they settle, they should do so before the weekend so as to minimize the impact on the jurors’ lives. Clearly, given that the judge himself is unsure of the defensibility of his ruling in the Federal Circuit Court of Appeals, the next stop for the trial should Oracle pursue it, those who are overjoyed by this ruling should be a bit more cautious. Google built key components of the Android operating system on a highly controversial legal theory that will ultimately be decided by either the Federal Circuit or the Supreme Court of the United States. A couple of years might seem like an eternity in a field like software development and mobile operating systems, but it’s obvious that Google has much longer-term interests in the Android operating system. And to be frank, a ruling that the judge himself was unsure of in no way means that there was no case. This decision is unprecedented; no comparable amount of software code (400 class definitions and thousands of methods) has been held uncopyrightable despite satisfying the originality requirement. Both sides had reason to appeal should the case have gone against them. 9

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“This action was the first of the so-called ‘smartphone war’ cases tried to a jury,” began the order on copyrightability, which, although technically true, is not the first case to be resolved; a number of other cases were filed after the Oracle v. Google which have been adjudicated without juries. More importantly, this case has unique characteristics that other smartphone-related cases don’t, instead dealing with patents instead of copyrights, or without the parties in question being in the middle of negotiating a licensing deal prior to the case. Even among copyright lawsuits, this is a rare case, because it deals not only with the infringement and fair use, but whether or not infringement is possible in the first place (i.e. can this material be copyrighted?). The judge, realizing the import of this decision and just how many people would be analyzing it, clarified the intended limitation of the scope of his holding at the end, saying: “This order does not hold that Java API packages are free for all to use without license. It does not hold that the structure, sequence, and organization of all computer programs may be stolen. Rather, it holds on the specific facts of this case, the particular elements replicated by Google were free for all to use under the Copyright Act.”

Published by: VR-Zone June 2nd, 2012

Hamburg-based ROCCAT Studios is looking to capture a key entry-level price-point with its newest mouse, the ROCCAT Lua. The ambidextrous mouse is outfitted with Pro Optic R2 sensor, three buttons, and a groovy illuminated logo. The Lua, according to its makers, is "The Classic 3-Button Mouse: Re-Mastered." Gamers often find themselves content with just a good gaming-grade 3-button mouse, without fancy macro buttons, or adjustable weights. The same demographic also includes those who are new to the PC gaming platform, and don't want to be scared away with expensive peripherals. For them, Hamburg Germany-based ROCCAT Studios has a groovy new mouse, the ROCCAT Lua. The company released some of the first pictures of the entry-level mouse.

Judge Alsup, rather than attempt to dictate how an evolving marketplace can operate, instead decided to say that method definitions are so inherently functional that they can’t be copyrighted, pointing to interoperability considerations to back up his ruling. The example of a method definition he gives is: public static int max (int x, int y) The method described here is a public (accessible by all the other code) and static (it gets initialized immediately when the program runs, and only one copy is needed since it never changes) function called “max” that returns an “int” (or integer) result based on the interaction of two variables, x and y, which are also integers. The problem is that programmers like myself know that this is a fairly simple, broad function; object-oriented languages like Java (and even non-object-oriented languages like C) allow for far more complex function names, which can deal with highly specific, even proprietary, formats for variables, returned data, or even project- or class-specific formats, data types, or highly specific types of functions designed to do a particular task within the project, and Oracle never claimed a monopoly over a generic function like “max.” The API part of the lawsuit was about a far larger and more expansive body of work than just basic mathematical functions. It is now up to the higher courts to decide on whether or not the specific code is copyrightable or not. Should the side with Judge Alsup, then Google is cleared and a new precedent is set in copyright law when dealing with writing software. Should they side with Oracle, then the question becomes whether or not the way Google used the code constituted fair use. Either way, this case is going to be very interesting to watch as time goes on. Rest assured, we will continue to cover this case as it makes its way through the courts. In many ways, it’s just getting started.

The ROCCAT Lua is an ambidextrous (symmetrical, can be used by both lefties and righties) 3-button gaming mouse. Its two main buttons are separated by a scroll-wheel with middle button, and a tracking resolution adjustment button. Speaking of which, the mouse packs a Pro Optic R2 sensor, with a maximum tracking resolution of 2,000 DPI. The switch allows gamers to adjust it in steps of 250 DPI, from 250 DPI, all the way up to 2,000 DPI. The switches backing the two buttons are said to be extremely durable, and made by Omron; while the scroll-wheel is designed to have locking incremental steps, instead of smooth turning. While it ensures that you select the right weapon in the middle of a game (by preventing over-scrolling), scrolling through long web-pages or documents could get cumbersome.

ROCCAT Shows Off Lua Entry-Level Gaming Mouse Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/roccat-shows-off-lua-entry-levelgaming-mouse/16120.html

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June 2nd, 2012

Published by: VR-Zone June 2nd, 2012

Today, Microsoft has announced the Windows 8 Release Preview which offers improvements to Mail, Photos and People apps. The company has also unveiled the details on the Upgrade Offer Program for customers who intend to purchase a new Windows PC.

The ROCCAT Lua features an ambidextrous V-shaped design, with thumb-rests on either side. This allows both palm and claw grips, using either hands. The company did not give out details such as dimensions and weight, but we feel the Lua is a mid-sized mouse that's as big as Razer Salmosa. ROCCAT mentioned choosing top-tier materials in the construction of the Lua. While the brand names "ROCCAT" and "Lua" are etched into the surface of the mouse, the company logo is illuminated arctic blue, with a soft "breathing effect" to its glow.

Today, Microsoft has announced the Windows 8 Release Preview which is available for download at http:// preview.windows.com, in 14 languages. The new Release Preview claims to offer a fast, seamless experience for touch, as well as keyboard and mouse. The Windows 8 Release Preview features improvements to the Mail, Photos and People apps, with increased personalization options for the Start Screen, multi-monitor support. It also offers new Family Safety features and enriched privacy and security controls, as well as new Bing applications - Travel, News and Sports.

"We took the beloved three-button mouse design and injected it with our innovative gaming engineering – and created a killer tool that gives props to the past while heading boldly into the future," said René Korte, ROCCAT Founder and CEO. "The Lua delivers everything gamers need for control, comfort and style – all in a sleek and slim design that offers perfect comfort for every hand," he added. The ROCCAT Lua will be released to the market worldwide, towards the end of July or early August. It is targeting a price point of US $29.99 (SG $38.7).

Microsoft announces Windows 8 Release Preview and Upgrade Offer Program Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/microsoft-announces-windows-8release-preview-and-upgrade-offer-program/16118.html

The company has also unveiled their Windows Upgrade Offer program for consumers purchasing a new Windows PC in Singapore. The offer provides consumers who buy an eligible Windows 7 PC the option to purchase a downloadable upgrade to Windows 8 Pro at an estimated retail price of just S$17.99 (inclusive of GST). However, there are some requirements which customers have to adhere to. Consumers who have bought a Windows 7 PC that is preinstalled with Windows 7 Home Basic, Home Premium, Professional or Ultimate, and includes a matching and valid OEM Certificate of Authenticity, will need to register from http://www.windowsupgradeoffer.com from 2 June. And when Windows 8 has been officially released, customers will receive an email from Microsoft which will contain the promo codes and purchase instructions. Note that the Upgrade Offer Program is only applicable for new Windows 7 PCs that have been purchased during the eligibility period of 2 June 2012 - 31 January 2013. And the Windows 8 Pro download must be redeemed before end February 2013. For more information on the Windows Upgrade Offer Program - http://www.windowsupgradeoffer.com.

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Published by: VR-Zone

ECS Rolls Out First Socket FM2 Motherboard - A85F2-A Deluxe Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/ecs-rolls-out-first-socket-fm2motherboard--a85f2-a-deluxe/16119.html June 2nd, 2012

ECS jumped the gun with launching its socket FM2 motherboard, the Black Series A85F2-A Deluxe. The motherboard seats AMD's next-generation "Trinity" accelerated processing units (APUs) in the FM2 package, and is based on the new AMD A85 FCH chipset. The A85F2-A Deluxe from ECS is the industry's first socket FM2 motherboard to be officially launched. The launch comes ahead of Computex 2012, where socket FM2 motherboards from various vendors will be exhibited. The FM2 platform seats second-generation "Trinity" accelerated processing units (APUs) from AMD, which are based on a combination of its new "Piledriver" x86 micro-architecture for the CPU component, and VLIW4 architecture for the Radeon GPU component. The A85F2-A Deluxe is based on a new chipset by AMD, the A85 FCH (Fusion Controller Hub).

There are a total of eight SATA 6 Gb/s on the A85F2A Deluxe, seven of which are assigned as internal ports, and one eSATA. Apart from IDE and AHCI, the A85 SATA controller supports RAID 0, 1, 5, and 10 modes. The board also has a total of six USB 3.0 ports, four of which are located on the rear panel, and two are given out through a standard front-panel header. The APU-integrated graphics controller gives out display through a range of display output connectors, including DVI, D-Sub, HDMI, and DisplayPort. The new platform supports triple-monitor Eyefinity for productivity. 8+1 channel HD audio (VIA-made CODEC), and gigabit Ethernet (Realtek-made PHY), make for the rest of it. ECS will likely target a sub-$150 (US) price point with the A85F2-A Deluxe. It will be available when the platform launches, a little later this quarter. In related news, previous-generation A75 and A55 FCH chipsets are compatible with socket FM2 APUs, and ECS plans to launch a number of value FM2 socket motherboards based on them, namely, A75F2-A2, A75F2-M2, A55F2-A2, A55F2-M3.

The A85F2-A Deluxe is a standard ATX motherboard, which builds on the feature-set of the A85 FCH. The FM2 APU is powered by a 4+1 phase VRM. The VRM utilizes ECS' Super Alloy chokes. The MOSFETs, probably conventional DPAK, are cooled by a chunky gold-colored heatsink. The CPU VRM draws power from an 8-pin EPS connector. The FM2 APU is wired to four DDR3 DIMM slots, which support up to 32 GB of dual-channel DDR3 memory, with speeds as high as DDR3-2600 MHz, made possible with overclocking; and two PCI-Express 2.0 x16 slots. The topmost of the two is electrical x16 capable, while the other is x8 capable, borrowing 8 lanes from its neighbouring slot. AMD CrossFireX is supported, so is Hybrid CrossFire, which allows you to run a compatible mid-range Radeon HD 7000 series graphics card in tandem with the APU's integrated graphics core. Other expansion slots include three PCIExpress 2.0 x1, and two legacy PCI.

GELID Outs Icy Vision Variant for Radeon HD 7900 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/gelid-outs-icy-vision-variant-forradeon-hd-7900/16117.html June 2nd, 2012

GELID Solutions launched a variant of its Icy Vision graphics card cooler for AMD Radeon HD 7970 and HD 7950. Called the Icy Vision-A, the cooler is designed keeping in mind the mount-hole spacing, the die-area of the 28 nm "Tahiti" silicon, and the added load-out of memory chips and MOSFETs that come with the new high-end graphics cards. GELID Solutions launched a variant of its Icy Vision graphics card cooler for AMD Radeon HD 7970 and HD 7950. Called the Icy Vision-A, the cooler is designed keeping in mind the mount-hole spacing, the die-area of the 28 nm "Tahiti" silicon, and the added load-out of memory chips and MOSFETs that come with the new high-end graphics cards. 12

June 2nd, 2012

Published by: VR-Zone

The Icy Vision-A ships with a large contingent of heatsinks. There are as many as 14 heatsinks for the memory chips (HD 7900 series have 12), three heatsinks for rows of MOSFETs, and other smaller heatsinks of various shapes and sizes, for graphics cards in which MOSFETs are spread around. The auxiliary heatsinks have adhesive thermal pads, while GELID included a syringe of its in-house GC-2 thermal compound, for the main heatsink. Apart from HD 7970 and HD 7950, the cooler includes support for other AMD Radeon GPUs, such as HD5850, HD5870, HD6850, HD6870, HD6950, HD6970, HD7850, and HD7870.

GELID's current flagship graphics card cooler, the Icy Vision Rev. B, lacks support for Radeon HD 7970 and HD 7950. This could be because the AMD "Tahiti" GPU package has a metal support brace around the die, which is designed to reinforce the package, and ensure that the chip's massive number of pins (balls) apply uniform pressure on the PCB. The support brace has a diamond-shaped cutout surrounding the die, and it is possible that the die and its support brace prevent uniform contact with the base of the Ivy Vision Rev. B heatsink, as it is. The new Icy Vision-A has a diamond-shaped bump on its GPU base, which fits the Tahiti package like a glove. Available soon, the Icy Vision-A from GELID is priced at US $55 (SG $71).

Manchester City Captain, Vincent Kompany, to appear at Dell Booth at PC Show 2012 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/manchester-city-captain-vincentkompany-to-appear-at-dell-booth-at-pc-show-2012/16116.html June 2nd, 2012

The heatsink of the Icy Vision-A bears a conventional aluminum fin-stack design. At the base, five 8 mm-thick exposed-copper heat pipes make indirect contact with the GPU over a copper plate. The heat pipes then transport heat to two aluminum fin stacks, where heat is dissipated to the air flow produced by two 92 mm UV-reactive fans. The heatsink has as many as 85 aluminum fins. Measuring 216 x 95 x 52 mm (LxWxH), the Icy Vision-A would require three expansion card slots in your system. It weighs about 465 g.

Manchester City fans would be pleased to know that the team captain, Vincent Kompany, will be making his appearance at Dell's booth, at the PC Show 2012 next week. Read on.

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Published by: VR-Zone

The PC Show technology fair is back, from 7 to 10 June next week. And Vincent Kompany, Captain of Barclays Premier League (BPL) Champions, Manchester City Football Club will be making his appearance at Dell's booth on Saturday, 9 June, 6.30pm – 8.30pm.

The TomTom Via 220, 260 and 280 are designed as Smart GPS devices for the daily drivers. The series are integrated with TomTom’s award-winning navigation software, which claims to provide extra clarity such that drivers will never miss their next turn again.

Dell customers will be able to take a picture or get an autograph with the BPL Player of the Season with proof of purchase of any Dell product at the PC Show. On top of that, they will also get to enjoy a whole host of exclusive offers, as well as exciting activities, including a lucky draw featuring the top prize of a trip for two to Poland. Other prizes include daily exclusive Euro 2012 adidas merchandise such as t-shirt, cap or shoe bags.

Via 220 Usual Price: S$199 PC Show Price: S$149

PC Show 2012 Promotions: TomTom

Via 260 Usual Price: S$239 PC Show Price: S$199 Via 280 Usual Price: S$279 PC Show Price: S$229 TomTom Go 2000

Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/pc-show-2012-promotionstomtom/16115.html June 2nd, 2012

Looking for a GPS device for your car? Take a look at the Via 200 and GO 2000 Series at TomTom's booths at the PC Show 2012. TomTom's booths can be located on level 3 Concourse (booth number 304), and level 4 (booth number 2022). TomTom Via 200 series The TomTom Go 2000 series feature the latest in design, hardware and software that can deliver an unrivalled, premium navigation experience. It comes equipped with Advanced Lane Guidance, TomTom IQ Routes, Hands-free Calling via Bluetooth and South East Asia maps for smoother driving. Go 2050 Usual Price: S$399 PC Show Price: S$349 Go 2050 World Usual Price: S$479 PC Show Price: S$429 14

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The TomTom's booths can be located on level 3 Concourse (booth number 304), and level 4 (booth number 2022).

PC Show 2012 Promotions: Brother Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/pc-show-2012-promotionsbrother/16113.html June 2nd, 2012

Brother will be at the PC Show with good offers on their printers and multifunction centres. Check out the promotions on the HL-2130 laser printer, DCP-7060D multi-function centre and MFC-7860DW monochrome laser multi-function centre at their booth in Hall 402, booth number A2027. Brother HL-2130

The Brother DCP-7060D monochrome laser multi-function centre offers 3-in-1 features - print, copy and scan - with automatic double-sided printing with speeds up to 24ppm for A4. It also comes with 3-year on-site warranty, with choice of standard or high-yield toner. Usual Price: S$188 PC Show price: S$168 + Free shopping vouchers Brother MFC-7860DW

The Brother HL-2130 is a compact monochrome laser printer that can print A4 documents at up to 20ppm. It comes with extended 3-year carry-in warranty and helps you save on affordable replacement toners at only S$32. Usual Price: S$118 PC Show price: S$66 Brother DCP-7060D

If you need faxing capabilities in addition to print, copy and scan, then this Brother MFC-7860DW monochrome laser multi-function Centre 5-in-1 is all you need. It has wireless networking capabilities and boasts print speeds of up to 26ppm for A4 documents. The MFC-7860DW also comes with automatic double-sided printing with added functionality to save on printing of junk faxes with PC Fax. Usual Price: S$398 PC Show price: S$348 + Free shopping vouchers The Brother products are showcased in Hall 402, Booth A2027 (Newstead Technologies).

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Asus vs Gigabyte: OC battle for i7 Ivy Bridge 7 GHz supremacy Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/asus-vs-gigabyte-oc-battle-for-i7-ivybridge-7-ghz-supremacy/16112.html June 2nd, 2012

Just yesterday “HiCookie” showed off his YouTube video of his 7.03GHz overclock of an i7 3770K Ivy Bridge using a Gigabyte Z77X-UD3H board and liquid nitrogen, but today we found another validation of the same CPU at 7.07GHz using an Asus Maximus V GENE by Andre Yang.

(HiCookie's Validation) There's no reason to believe that these two are the only ones that achieved 7+GHz on their respective platforms, and I won't be suprised if there's going to be a 7.1 GHz i7 Ivy Bridge OC validation soon.

Hardware details for iPhone 5, and picture of new maps application released Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/hardware-details-for-iphone-5-andpicture-of-new-maps-application-released/16111.html June 2nd, 2012

Just yesterday “HiCookie” showed off his YouTube video of his 7.03GHz overclock of an i7 3770K Ivy Bridge using a Gigabyte Z77X-UD3H board and liquid nitrogen, but today we found another validation of the same CPU at 7.07GHz using an Asus Maximus V GENE by Andre Yang. A big difference between Yang’s and Cookie’s validation was that all the cores were enabled on the Asus board, whereas, half the cores were disabled on Cookie’s Gigabyte board. Yang achieved his clock using 1.92V of juice, and Cookie pumped in 1.956V. Both achieved the insane clock with a multiplier of x63.

Dissecting the beta version of iOS 6, 9to5mac has provided a lot of information on the upcoming iPhone device (N41AP/ iPhone5,1). They also included a photo and details of the upcoming 3D map application. Dissecting the beta version of iOS 6, 9to5mac has provided a lot of information on the upcoming iPhone device (N41AP/ iPhone5,1). They also included a photo and details of the upcoming 3D map application. 9to5mac included the following details in their report: -The iPhone running iOS 6 uses Darwin Kernel Version 13.0.0, which is one version above the latest developer version of Mac OS 10.8 Mountain Lion. - The processor to be used in the upcoming iPhone will use a processor, codenamed "A5-***" at Apple. The last three digits have been omitted by 9to5mac to protect their source. The codename indicates that the new chip could be a variant of Apple's A5 processor line, and may not (but might) be upgraded to "A6".

(Yang's Validation)

-The next iPhone will use an entirely new GPU chip, which doesn't seem to exist yet, called "SGX543RC". As it doesn't actually exist, 9to5mac was unable to provide any details regarding the GPU's specs. -The next iPhone will have 1 GB of RAM, an upgrade from the iPhone 4S' mere 512 MB. 9to5mac also released a shot of the new maps application.

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Tim Cook at Foxconn This picture differs from a rendering that 9to5mac released earlier, which featured the GPS/Compass icon connected directly to the 3D icon. But, on the iPhone version of the maps application, the buttons will be separated to avoid accidently hitting either of them. 9to5mac ends the article, hinting that there is a new iOS application from Apple that has yet to be enumerated.

Apple & Foxconn worker abuse still prevalent Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/apple--foxconn-worker-abuse-stillprevalent/16110.html June 2nd, 2012

Students & Scholars Against Corporate Misbehaviour (SACOM) says that Foxconn hasn't cleaned up their act, following the company’s promise to improve conditions for their workers. Students & Scholars Against Corporate Misbehaviour (SACOM) says that Foxconn hasn't cleaned up their act, following the company’s promise to improve conditions for their workers. Earlier this year, the Fair Labor association audited Foxconn's working conditions, and uncovered labor violations including illegal working hours, and a disregard for employee health and safety. Foxconn is the world's largest electronic parts manufacturer, and manufactures many of Apple's products, including the iPad and iPhone. Tim Cook himself paid the company a visit and yet, according to Students & Scholars Against Corporate Misbehaviour (SACOM), Foxconn and Apple have not cleaned up their act.

SACOM has visited Foxconn's factories on multiple occasions, and after performing over one hundred interviews, has arrived at the conclusion that problems like inhumane treatment, salary cuts, and high production targets are still issues there. SACOM spoke to Routers on the subject saying, "The frontline management continue to impose humiliating disciplinary measures on workers. The above findings demonstrate that Apple and Foxconn have not turned over a new leaf." Geoffrey Crothall of the China Labour Bulletin concurs with SACOM, explaining, "I haven't seen any real evidence of any significant changes. At the moment they're just tinkering around the edges and doing PR stunts ... I don't think there's a short term fix to the situation at Foxconn. It's too big, it's too complicated." Foxconn has increased worker salary, but overtime cuts make it so that the salary has actually only decreased. Public sentiment of Foxconn, and even Apple for how they have handled the allegations of poor conditions there, is low right now. It seems the conscience of an international market with millions of i-devices is eager to help relieve the situations of those who make them.

Amazon Granted Digital Gift Patent Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/amazon-granted-digital-giftpatent/16109.html June 2nd, 2012

Amazon has been granted a patent by the USPTO (United States Patent and Trademark Office) for a system of delivering digital items to another person as a gift. Shockingly, no one had yet patented this idea. Wait, wait, wait, is this right? Did Amazon just patent every future Christmas, Hanukkah, birthday, wedding, insert-giftgiving-celebration-here? Well, no. But they have received a patent on one of the most common forms of gift-giving in the world today, namely a 17

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system for selecting a digital gift (read: movie, music, eBook, etc.), sending a notification to the recipient, and allowing the recipient to download the gift. There’s a twist to the patent, however. It also describes the ability for the gift-giver to delay payment for the item until the digital gift has been accepted. If the gift hasn’t been accepted and downloaded by a specific time, the order can be cancelled and no payment will be made by the gift-giver. The rest of the patent describes ideas that are fairly common to most people who have used the Internet over the past four years or so. Granted, Amazon applied for the patent back in 2008, and at the time it would have been a fairly innovative idea, but today it seems like a fairly obvious idea. Broad patents such as this have been a rallying cry against the United States patent system, especially with the massive adoption of the idea by the tech industry. At the moment, Amazon has not implemented the delayed payment model for its digital gifts yet, but it will be interesting to see if, now that the patent has gone through, Amazon adds the delayed payment feature to its Kindle and Amazon Video stores. It would be a welcome addition to a wildly popular service.

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Google admitted in 2010 that Street View cars were collecting more information than intended. The cars were only supposed to collect Wi-Fi access point locations, but also inadvertently captured email and text messages, passwords, histories, and other personal data from unsecured wireless networks as far back as 2007. The FCC report blamed a “rogue” engineer, but also showed that senior management at Google knew about and signed off on the Wi-Fi sniffing project. Google was fined $25,000 for deliberately impeding and delaying the investigation, a charge which Google’s top lawyer vehemently denied in a letter to the FCC, claiming that it was the governmental agency itself which had been stalling, though Google did pay the fine. When the report was released, Timothy Pilgrim, the Australian Privacy Commissioner, told the Australian Financial Review that his office would be examining the report and would determine whether or not to refer the matter to the Australian Federal Police. Today, he told reporters that there would be no new investigation, saying, “I have decided not to open another investigation into Google Street View. In reaching this decision, I have considered the FCC’s report and don’t consider that a new investigation would reveal any information that would change our original finding.” In 2010, Google was found to have breached the Australian Privacy Act through the collection of Wi-Fi payload data, with the case being referred to the APC. The APC dropped the case, however, after determining that Google’s data collection was “inadvertent,” rather than a deliberate act. Google published an apology to all Australians and conducted a “privacy impact assessment” in response to the commissioner’s findings at the time.

Israel Denies Ties to Flame Malware Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/israel-denies-ties-to-flamemalware/16104.html June 2nd, 2012

Australian Privacy Commissioner Not Pursuing Google Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/australian-privacy-commissionernot-pursuing-google/16108.html June 2nd, 2012

Australia's Privacy Commissioner has declined to open a second investigation into Google's collection of private data through its Street View cars. The Google Street View Wi-Fi snooping case continues to churn along, with the Australian Privacy Commissioner, despite a report from the US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) proving it wasn’t the work of one lone engineer, has said he will not launch a second investigation into the incident.

Israeli officials have denied any connection to the Flame malware, after media reports connected statements from the vice-Prime Minister to the cyberespionage threat uncovered by Kaspersky Labs Israel is dismissing charges that it had anything to do with the Flame malware discovered by Kaspersky Labs. Several news reports on the malware toolkit (though not our coverage) linked comments made by the vice-Prime Minister, Moshe Ya’alon, with the malware, which researchers have tentatively labeled a weapon of cyberespionage, though full analysis could take years. A spokesman for the Israeli government, however, told BBC reporters that Ya’alon had been misrepresented in the reporting of the comments. Security researchers have also been quick to point out that it’s far too early to pinpoint the source of the attack. The comments were made by Mr. Ya’alon, who also happens to be the Minister of Strategic Affairs, while discussing 18

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the attacks on Army Radio, Israel’s military radio station. “There are quite a few governments in the West [with] rich high-tech [capabilities] that view Iran, and particularly the Iranian nuclear threat, as a meaningful threat, and can possibly be involved with this field,” he said. “I would imagine that everyone who sees the Iranian nuclear threat as a significant one, and that is not only Israel, it is the entire Western world, headed by the United States of America, would likely take every single measure available, including these, to harm the Iranian nuclear project.” When asked to clarify the comments, a spokesman said, “There was no part of the interview where the minister has said anything to imply that Israel was responsible for the virus.” Other speculation has linked America with the malware, including a completely unverifiable claim by an “anonymous official” to NBC that the US was behind the attack, but that he had “no first-hand knowledge” of the attack. The US has also denied responsibility for the attack. Kaspersky Labs, the security firm that discovered the malware, has said that it could take years to determine where the toolkit had originated. However, their researchers have noticed that whoever was behind the malware appears to be slowly retreating, covering their tracks as the go. “It’s very tough to shut down 80+ C&C (command & control) servers at the same time,” explained Roel Schouwenberg, one of Kaspersky’s senior security researchers. “Some of them are not active anymore. I think this is some sort of effort to buy themselves some time and change the game plan if the need would arise. We’ve seen it in the past that after some period of silence [the] operation is rebooted.” The UN has described Flame as a significant espionage tool and issued its “most serious” cyber security warning to date. However, others have suggested that the threat has been overblown by all the media coverage. It seems that every time there’s a new malware threat detected, it gets labeled a huge threat, or the worst malware ever, no matter its actual purpose.

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modern consumer computer network interface cards, wired or wireless, are only capable of using 1Gbps, or 1,024Mbps; in layman’s terms, four computers downloading at full speed could not use up the bandwidth available on this connection. Technically, Kabel Deutschland hasn’t provided the fastest real-world connection. That honor belongs to Sigbritt Löthberg, whose son arranged for a 40Gbps fiber connection to be sent straight to her house in 2007; he said he sent his 75-year-old mother the connection, roughly 10 times as fast as the Kabel Deutchsland connection, to prove that fiber is viable for residential connections. The new Kabel Deutschland connection wasn’t for residential use, however. It was set up for a local school as a field test for an upgraded cable network using the 862MHz spectrum, channel bonding, and the EuroDocsis 3.0 standard. Crucially, the test proved that upgrades didn’t require new civil engineering work. The company did not specify how many channels had been bonded, which could be significant, since some capacity of the network would need to be left open for other cable services, such as TV signals. In a statement to press, Lorenz Glatz, the CTO of Kabel Deutschland, said that “the Schwerin field test shows that an 862MHz upgraded cable network is able to broadcast download speeds of up to 4.7Gbps. Using this speed, a DVD could theoretically be downloaded within eight seconds,” he continued, although, “current standard laptops or modems cannot even process these high speeds. It will take many more years until users find online services and web content that need[s] a download speed of up to 4.7Gbps.” The question of whether or not ISPs could provide speeds like this profitably is often swept aside by the excitement for the new possibilities, although at the moment it’s fairly obvious that speeds such as this are not possible in a residential or even commercial sense. Despite this, and despite the fact that no one could fully utilize such a connection at home, it’s fun to think about. I mean, who wouldn’t want such a ridiculously fast connection?

German ISP Reaches New Speed Milestone Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/german-isp-reaches-new-speedmilestone/16102.html June 2nd, 2012

In a field test for infrastructure and standards upgrades, Kabel Deutschland has announced reaching a new realworld speed milestone for cable providers. How fast is your current internet connection? Does it meet your needs? Chances are it does, but as history shows, speeds are constantly increasing. However, this latest milestone is insane, considering that the average home connection is 100Mbps or less. Kabel Deutschland, a German cable operator, has claimed to be the first ISP in the world to successfully create a broadband download speed of 4,700Mbps in a real-world field test. Let me put that in perspective for you: most 19

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VR-Zone.com | Tech News for the Geeks! VR-Zone | Stuff for the Geeks is a bi-weekly publication covering the latest gadgets and stuff for the geeks.

Star Wars: The Old Republic to get level cap increase, new planet, species, and companion Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/star-wars-the-old-republic-to-getlevel-cap-increase-new-planet-species-and-companion/16175.html June 5th, 2012

BioWare has unveiled some of the new content and features that will be coming to Star Wars: The Old Republic this year, including a level cap rise, new abilities, a new planet, new species, new companion, and lots of additional high-level content. BioWare has unveiled some of the new content and features that will be coming to Star Wars: The Old Republic this year, including a level cap rise, new abilities, a new planet, new species, new companion, and lots of additional high-level content. The level cap and new abilities will be the main attraction for most players. BioWare was tight-lipped about the exact number of levels involved, but we can likely expect it to be 5 or 10, a standard for most MMOs. We likely also won't see this until later this year, from September onwards, and perhaps closer to Christmas. The company has not revealed if this will come in a standard free update or as part of a paid expansion, but we expect the latter.

The increased level cap will mean more story for all classes, an important feature of the game from the beginning. Currently when players reach level 50 their main storyline ends and they are forced to play Flashpoints and Operations for additional story, or repeat the daily quests, which have begun to employ text-based instructions more often, moving away from BioWare's much-touted fully-voiced characters. We can expect a return to proper storytelling with the new content for each class, however. From the rise to level 50 players acquired five primary companions, with a sixth in the form of a ship droid. A new companion will be available to all classes, the HK-51 Assassination Droid. It looks like players will have to fight it first before gaining control. It also appears that this is a shared companion across all classes, marking a sharp shift away from the unique companions of each class. This likely means that the same-sex romances that BioWare promised are even further away from entering the game. However, Ray Muzyka, CEO of BioWare, commented that “new companions,� plural, were on the way, so it may just be that the studio is keeping the others under wraps for now.

As with any level cap increase, new skills are to be expected. The E3 reveal video showcases two of these, a roundhouse kick for the Jedi Knight, and a spinning lightsaber attack for the Sith Inquisitor, adding some new AOE capability to the classes.

A new playable race will be available, the Cathar, a kind of humanised cat-people, which players will have encountered throughout the existing in-game world. Races are primarily cosmetic, of course, so this won't really affect gameplay, but 1

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it will some provide additional variety to the game. Again, Muzyka promises there will be new species, plural, to look forward to.

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A new Operation, Terror From Beyond, looks like it will involve the invasion of alien forces from worm holes, leading to some pretty unique boss fights and encounters, including floating pillars and what appears to be a colour-themed battle that is sure to enrage the colour blind among us.

Since players will need somewhere new to level up, we can expect to travel to the new planet of Makeb, a planet overrun by the Hutt Cartel, which will be the primary focus of the storyline there. This is a little-known planet that BioWare claims has never been seen before in the Star Wars universe. This gives the studio a lot of artistic freedom, but it may disappoint fans who were hoping for one of the more iconic locations, like Kahyyyk, the homeworld of the Wookies.

A new Warzone, Ancient Hypergates, will give the booming player-versus-player community lots to look forward to. It is not clear what the objectives are, but we can imagine it involves claiming and holding the hypergates. Regardless, it looks like there will be plenty of player-killing fun involved. Fans of each type of end-game content will be pleased to know that there is new gameplay on the way. The first new space mission since launch, called Space Station Assault, is coming, replete with plenty of tight spaces to squeeze through while shooting down enemy ships. The illusive “secret space project� the studio has been working on remains a hermetically-sealed affair.

Players can also expect a new version of Nightmare difficulty mode, which promises to be more difficult than its current version. Update 1.3, which will release soon, likely in late June or early July, will feature a group finder and additional unlocks as part of the legacy system, which will let players 2

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gain experience faster in the core gameplay areas they love, whether it is PvP, space combat or Flashpoints. In July gamers will also be able to play the game for free up to level 15, giving a taste of the action in a galaxy far, far away. Star Wars: The Old Republic may have lost many subscribers, dropping from 1.7 million to 1.2 million at the last EA earnings call, as well as a number of its developers, but it looks like there is still plenty of content to look forward to.

Nintendo reveals Wii U games at E3 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/nintendo-reveals-wii-u-games-ate3/16174.html June 5th, 2012

Batman: Arkham City is coming to the Wii U in the new Armored Edition, where players can enjoy the Wham!, Crash! and Kapow! of the Caped Crusader with the use of the new controller for accessing Batman's utility belt and guiding weapons like the baterang to their destination. From watching the demo it is clear that this will be a useful feature in the game.

Nintendo has unveiled 23 game titles for its upcoming nextgeneration console, the Wii U, at this year's E3 gaming event, promising to “revolutionise your living room.” Nintendo has unveiled 23 game titles for its upcoming nextgeneration console, the Wii U, at this year's E3 gaming event, promising to “revolutionise your living room.” The new gamepad is the major feature of the Wii U and it will feature trigger buttons, shoulder buttons, an infrared receiver, which removes the need for wires, an accelerometer, built-in rumble, camera and microphone, and speakers. The Wii U will also support two of these, with dual gamepad experiences coming in the future. Nintendo is promising that this will lead to “new disruption” via “asymmetric gameplay.” The iconic game designer Shigeru Miyamoto, responsible for most of Nintendo's successful franchises, revealed that Pikmin 3 will be coming to the Wii U, complete with more detailed Pikmin, thanks to the improved resolution of the hardware, Rock Pikmin that can break hard objects and can be aimed at specific targets, a challenge mode, and map and gameplay options via the new touchscreen gamepad.

ZombiU lets gamers participate in the zombie apocalypse inside their living rooms, making substantial use of the new controller. Players can use it as a scanner, to make sniper shots, to hack doors, and even to create a zombified version of themselves via the built-in camera. The audience responded extremely well to this one and we expect it will be a major attraction for the Wii U on launch.

A new Nintendo console would be nothing with Mario, and so we can expect New Super Mario Bros U, which will feature the typical side-scrolling platform action, but the addition of new gameplay elements, including a boost mode for racing through levels with friends.

Music and fitness are two big genres since the launch of the Wii and Kinect, and these will continue to be a focus with the Wii U.

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The balance board makes a return after a whopping 43 million copies of Wii Fit and Wii Fit Plus were sold. Wii Fit U continues the same gameplay, but adds new features, with a fitness meter that can upload calories burned on a daily run, and off-TV play where content is shown on the Wii U controller screen. Exercise has never seemed so exciting. “My body is ready.�

Just Dance 4 is on the way, with new songs and dances, but the Wii U gamepad will let one player adjust the gameplay live, keeping dancers on their toes in ways that even Michael Jackson might have struggled with.

The Miiverse is Nintendo's new social gaming network, which players will experience once the console is powered up. Miis will wander about and congregate, and players can communicate via their Miis with speech bubbles, which will display text and handwritten notes and images, like Swapnote. Players will also be able to share screen captures of games, share recent activity and scores, and display facial expressions to represent their current mood. This feature will eventually roll out to the 3DS, PC, smartphones and tablets, connecting Nintendo players across all platforms.

For those who prefer to sing, the working title of Sing might be suitable. Instead of facing the screen players can face their friends and use the Wii U controller to display lyrics, a rather clever use of the dual-screen capability.

Other games on the horizon include Scribblenauts Unlimited, Mass Effect 3, Tank Tank Tank, Tekken Tag Tournament 2, Trine 2: Director's Cut, Aliens: Colonial Marines, Lego City, Assassin's Creed 3, Rabbids Land, Rayman Legend, Your Shape, Sports Connection, and The Avengers.

The Wii had Wii Sports, but the Wii U has Nintendo Land, a themepark style game that features 12 attractions or minigames that make use of the studio's iconic characters. Some of these include Legend of Zelda Battlequest, Luigi's Ghost Mansion, Donkey Kong Crash Course, Takemaru's Ninja Castle, and an Animal Crossing game. We can likely expect Mario and other Nintendo classics to be there also. Nintendo promises that players need to give this a go in person to really see what Wii U has to offer. It will release with the Wii U, likely as a bundle.

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Some may have their doubts about the Wii U, but clearly Nintendo is pulling out all the stops and could change the way we play games, just as it did with the original Wii half a decade ago. The initial reveals look very promising and we expect to see further unique uses of the Wii U controller to surface in the future.

EA's Keynote Speech @ E3 Games as a Service Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/ea-s-keynote-speech--e3--games-asa-service/16172.html June 5th, 2012

EA's presentation at E3 focused on blockbuster titles and integration across multiple platforms, especially social networks, along with continuing support for earlier games in the form of DLC and expansions. I’m going to come right out and say it. I don’t have a problem with DLC. In fact, I think DLC is a wonderful way of prolonging a game’s life, especially if you’ve really enjoyed that game. I will grant that there are ways that DLC is used horribly, namely paid DLC on the disc or forcing the gamer to pay for DLC to get the full experience. EA has often been accused of bad practices when it comes to DLC, but they decided to focus on that during their E3 presentation.

Next was Madden NFL 13, with Hall-of-Famer Michael Irving presenting some new features and commenting on the improved physics engine. Dubbed the “Infinity Engine,” the new physics model takes players’ mass, speed, and hit location into account, and dynamically creates the correct forces acting on the players to produce life-like collisions. Gone are the days of scripted animations determining when a player is downed. Also shown was a new Career mode, which connects you to your friends and revolves around your player as he strives to enter the Hall of Fame, with virtual twitter feeds, dynamic news stories, and RPG-like XP. Also revealed is that the career mode can either be taken from the perspective of a current player, a legend like Joe Montana or Michael Irving, or from a custom player. You can even take the shoes of a coach like John Madden and play through a coach’s career. Madden 13 will release later this year.

Their talk wasn’t focused entirely on DLC, but instead on gaming as a rich experience, rather than a singular event. Instead of thinking of the game as residing on a particular disc, EA wants us to think of a game as a world that extends beyond the console to other areas of our lives, including social networks and smartphone integration.

Next, it was Maxis’ turn to take the stage, with two announcements. The first was SimCity Social, which looks to topple all the FarmVille clones and provide a “real simulation” on the Facebook social game platform. While I sincerely hope Maxis can pull off a miracle, I fear that SimCity Social is going to become just another city-building time-sink on Facebook with forced social features and ridiculous microtransactions.

The presentation kicked off with a demonstration of Dead Space 3, the newest game in the survival horror franchise. Taking place on a snowy world, the demo showed off coop gameplay and a massive worm-like boss encounter. The game will release February of 2013.

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They next showed off the new PC version of SimCity, and this was far more exciting. For the first time, SimCity will include multiplayer, allowing you and your friends (or just yourself if you’re of a more megalomaniacal bent) to take control of multiple cities in the same region, with cooperative and competitive goals and with every action you take affecting every other city in the region. Your cities will also be connected to what was called “a world of SimCities,” with actions and global goals behaving similarly to their smallerscale multiplayer counterparts. Look for it to release on PC later this year.

Bioware took the stage next, praising the community of players in Star Wars: The Old Republic, who have invested more than 520 million hours into the game since launching 6 months ago. The surprise announcement was that The Old Republic would be getting a free-to-play trial similar to what World of Warcraft has done. Free players will be able to advance to level 15 without having to pay a dime, but will need to subscribe in order to advance beyond that point. A massive new content release is also coming in July, with a new playable race (pictured above), new instances, new warzones, and new high-level content. Battlefield 3 was next, with developers from DICE explaining the new features coming to the multiplayer juggernaut in the coming months, as well as providing some interesting statistics tracked by the game, such as 40 million flight hours logged and 1.9 trillion bullets fired by the 15 million players in Battlefield 3 since launch. The big feature announced, available now on PS3 and next week for PC and Xbox, is a new community feature called Battlefield Premium. Seemingly an answer to Call of Duty: Elite, the premium service for that shooter’s multiplayer community, Battlefield Premium will give players 20 new weapons, multiple new camo patterns and dogtags, as well as access to the 5 expansions for the Battlefield 3 game. Next was the highly anticipated shooter, Medal of Honor. Shown running on the Frostbite 2 engine, all of the conflicts in the single-player campaign have “a dotted line to real-world conflicts and hotspots.” The demo showed an attack on a Somali pirate compound, complete with destructible terrain and buildings. Multiplayer features were also announced, with a “global multiplayer campaign” featuring 12 Special Forces teams from 10 countries around the globe, such as the Russian Spetznas, the British SAS, the American SEALs, and so on. No release date was announced, but we’ll keep our eyes open.

Included in this group is the already-released Return to Karkand, an expansion that released shortly after launch. Also included are Close Quarters, an infantry-centric expansion coming out this month with small, tight, infantryonly maps, Armored Kill, a vehicle-centric expansion with some of the largest maps in Battlefield to date releasing in September, Aftermath, with maps based around the ruined city of Tehran after the earthquake featured in the single-player campaign, releasing in December, and End Game, focusing on high-speed lethality and introducing motorcycles, releasing in March of 2013. All of this is available to gamers for $49.99.

EA Sports again took the stage and began announcing new features for FIFA 13. Calling the FIFA franchise a social network for football fans, EA announced new social features, 6

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including iPad and iPhone versions of the game which integrate seamlessly with the current social framework created for FIFA 12. In fact, it was announced that FIFA 12 players’ levels and XP will transfer between the games, allowing returning players to start right where they’d left off in the previous game. Messi was announced as the cover athlete, due to his skillful footwork being the inspiration for EA’s new handling system in FIFA. Using similar techniques to the physics engine detailed for the Madden series and refined physics for the ball, the improved AI can now think two or three plays ahead, with complex attacks being used to break through a tough defense. The example shown was a player running to a position for a pass from a player that had yet to receive the ball, though when the pass came he was in perfect position to score a goal. Look for FIFA 13 this fall.

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Finally, EA ended on a graphics spectacle by showing off Crysis 3. The jaw-dropping visual fidelity of the demo was enough to get anyone interested, but the open world design and interesting locales allowing for a freeform style of gameplay are sure to bring in gamers who would otherwise write off Crysis 3 as just a pretty graphics engine. Called an “urban rainforest,” the environment allows for a huge variety of landscapes to fight across, along with multiple paths to completing objectives. Look for the release of this hotly anticipated game in February of 2013. Keep your eyes open for more of our E3 coverage as the week continues.

The crown jewel in EA’s presentation was the announcement of a “multi-yea, multi-product” deal with the UFC. THQ had a stranglehold on the UFC license for three years, but now the UFC is partnering with EA to produce games for its “half a billion fans in 175 countries,” so that they can “finally get the best UFC videogame possible.” No word was given on when the first game would be releasing, but I suspect it will be within the next year and based on the previous EA MMA engine.

ASUS's Prototype 40-phase Z77 Motherboard - Wolverine! Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/asus-s-prototype-40-phase-z77motherboard--wolverine-/16173.html June 5th, 2012

Remember the Gigabyte Z77X-UP7 that we reported yesterday which had 32-phase power? ASUS has oneupped its fiercest rival with a 40-phase motherboard, albeit still a non-production but working prototype codenamed Wolverine.

After dropping the UFC bombshell, EA continued by announcing that Criterion would be developing another Need for Speed game. Titled “Need for Speed: Most Wanted,” it’s based around the premise of the previous Most Wanted game of becoming the most wanted racer. Criterion plans to do this by creating an open-world racing game with deep social integration, allowing you to compete against your friends in multiple categories, such as fastest time or highest ranked. Each action in game will award you points, and these points are how much of the social competition is scored. No word on a release date.

The prototype ASUS motherboard codenamed Wolverine as pictured below shares an uncanny resemblance to the P8Z77-V series, with the obvious exception of the 40phase power design. Annoyingly, silkscreen markings of the drivers and PWM controllers used were blacked out but it is certainly a radical departure from the usual DIGI+ VRM design. Time will tell if ASUS will (re-)adopt the marketing friendly "MOAR PHASES IS BETTER" metric approach, which is silly as there will be a diminishing point of return really. For example, the ROG Maximus V Gene implements just 8+4 beefy phases, but that didn't hinder its prowness in claiming most subzero overclocking records.

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Electronic Arts has shown off trailers and demos of some of its upcoming games as part of Download 2012 at this year's E3 gaming event, including Dead Space 3, Madden NFL 13, SimCity and SimCity Social, four new DLC packs for Battlefield 3, and Need For Speed: Most Wanted. “A few years ago the game you bought was the game you got. Now our games offer so much more. We don't stop creating when the game is ready. We go on building more content that connects and extends the experience,� said John Riccitiello, CEO of EA. The first game shown was Dead Space 3 from Visceral Games. The game will feature new locations, including the depths of space and a frozen planet infested with Necromorph. There will be new characters like John Carver and new gameplay modes like drop in/drop out co-op, which is demonstrated below. The game launches in February 2013. Madden NFL 13 promises to deliver "physics you can feel," thanks to the new Infinity Engine. "Every impact is more intense, every battle is more realistic," according to Cam Weber, GM of American Football at EA. He said that the engine will deliver a countless number of animation possibilities, so no two plays will look or feel the same, while interactions between players will be more organic. The Infinity Engine takes into consideration the character's mass, speed and momentum, and this can affect their balance and performance in a game. A character's physical attributes also have more impact, with smaller players unable to push through larger players, but having more speed and agility. Finally, the game is putting an end to predefined endings, so players can struggle on and try to regain their balance after being tackled, compared to previously just having to give up and watch the animation play out.

EA reveals E3 demos for Dead Space 3, Madden NFL 13, SimCity, Battlefield 3, Need For Speed: Most Wanted Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/ea-reveals-e3-demos-for-deadspace-3-madden-nfl-13-simcity-battlefield-3-need-for-speed-mostwanted/16169.html June 5th, 2012

Electronic Arts has unveiled a host of games at this year's E3, including Dead Space 3, Madden NFL 13, SimCity and SimCity Social, four new DLC packs for Battlefield 3, and Need for Speed: Most Wanted.

The game will also feature a Connected Careers mode, which provides strong gameplay progression, a dynamic storyline, and social integration, allowing players to create or join leagues with up to 32 other people. Gamers can play as NFL legends, as themselves, or as a coach, giving a wide variety of gameplay options. Each game will earn the player XP, which can be spent to upgrade their character's abilities, adding an element of RPG to the sports game. Players can reach the Hall of Fame, retire from the league, and watch as the story unfolds around them, with a virtualised Twitter feed to add some immersion to the experience. Check out some gameplay below, with Kinect voice commands demonstrated.

"One of our best known franchises, SimCity, has seen a lot of immitators over the years," said Lucy Bradshaw, GM of Maxis. "But I'm very happy to say that we are gaining back our crown as king of the city builders."

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SimCity Social is, as many expected, coming to Facebook. Check out the trailer below. Perhaps the best bit about it is "More City, less Ville." We wonder what that could be a reference to.

PC users won't miss out either, however, as a new SimCity game is on the horizon, complete with multiplayer, dynamic challenges and Godzilla.

There's more first-person shooter goodies on the way with Battlefield 3 Premium, announced by Dice. It offers two weeks early access to new content, 20 new weapons, 10 new vehicles, 20 new maps, new dog tags, strategy guides, advanced features and more. The early access will be the big thing, and Dice is not just content with the two DLC updates it has already announced, namely the infantry-heavy Close Quarters due in June and the tank-heavy Armored Kill due in September; it has also announced Aftermath, a survival patch set in a destroyed city, due in December, and End Game for high-speed action and motorcycles, due in March 2013.

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Lenovo Singapore introduces new IdeaPad Ultrabooks with third generation Intel Core processors Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/lenovo-singapore-introducesnew-ideapad-ultrabooks-with-third-generation-intel-coreprocessors/16171.html June 5th, 2012

Lenovo has launched their new sleek and chic IdeaPad U310 and U410 Ultrabooks with third generation Intel Core processors, large storage capacity, rich audio, fast boot up, instant resume and prolonged battery life. The IdeaPad U310 will be retailing at the upcoming PC Show 2012.

The IdeaPad U310 measures 18mm, weighs 1.7kg and boasts up to seven hours of battery life on a single charge. Powered by the new third generation Intel Core i5 processor, the U310 is equipped with 32GB SSD cache, 500GB hard drive and Intel GMA 4000 HD graphics. The Ultrabook also incorporates Lenovo Smart Update that can automatically update email, IM chats and social media messages even when in sleep mode. Price starting from S$1,499, the Lenovo IdeaPad U310 will be available from Lenovo retailers on 7 June, as well as at the PC Show 2012.

Criterion is bringing racing back to the fore with Need For Speed: Most Wanted, which "makes competition out of everything," including race times, pursuits, and jumps, which earn players speed points and puts them higher on the Most Wanted list. Check out the gameplay below. 9

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The IdeaPad U410 is equipped with third generation Intel Core i5 processor, 4GB DDR3 memory , 32GB SSD and features a large 750GB hard drive. It incorporates Nvidia GeForce 610M with 1GB VRAM that provides seamless gaming and high quality video playback. The U410 claims to offer ultra-fast boot up and quicker resume from sleep mode compared to non-optimized devices and will be available in Singapore by end of June. Its starting price is S$1,599. At the event, Lenovo also announced its partnership with ERIIN, an upcoming Singapore-based multi-label online retailer, in organizing the “STREET CANDY� fashion show. The show revolves around the idea of fusing street style, fashion and technology, and is ERIIN's debut runway show in Singapore.

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The Fujitsu LIFEBOOK AH532 can provide superb visuals, seamless video playbacks and great audio quality for a real theatre and gaming experience. It is equipped with the latest third generation Intel Core i5 and i7 dual-core processors, and boasts a 15.6-inch SuperFine High Definition TFT back-light LED wide-screen display, with the latest NVIDIA GeForce GT 620M with Optimus technology and DTS Boost Sound system. The AH532 also comes with an optional modular bay that fits a Dual Layer DVD Super Multi Writer and Dual Layer Blu-Ray Writable Drive. The AH552 will retail at S$1,388 (inclusive of GST), while the AH532 will have a price tag of S$1,888 (inclusive of GST) at the PC Show 2012.

Fujitsu PC Asia Pacific launches new 2012 Summer LIFEBOOKS Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/fujitsu-pc-asia-pacific-launchesnew-2012-summer-lifebooks/16168.html June 5th, 2012

This afternoon, Fujitsu PC Asia Pacific launched their new 2012 Summer LIFEBOOKS which include AH552, 13.3inch S-series SH772 and SH572, as well as the world's thinnest and lightest 14-inch U series. And best of all, the LIFEBOOKS will be retailing at this week's PC Show 2012.

The LIFEBOOK U772 claims to be the world's thinnest 14-inch Ultrabook with a thinness of 15.6mm and weighs 1.45kg. It sports a 14-inch SuperFine, High Definition LED Backlit display, with Intel HD 4000 Graphics and latest DirectX 11 support, you can have a vivid, clear videoconference meetings as well as high quality video playback. Powered by Intel vPro processor, the U772 features BIOS Lock, optional Trusted Platform Module (TPM), Hard Disk Lock and Anti-theft Lock Slot for improved manageability and maximum protection. The LIFEBOOK UH572 is designed as an affordable Ultrabook with decent and long battery life. It weighs 1.6k and comes equipped with the latest Intel HD 4000 Graphics to deliver clear visuals, vibrant colors and smooth highdefinition (HD) videos on its 13.3-inch High Definition SuperFine LCD display. The Fujitsu LIFEBOOK U772 will 10

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retail at S$2,888 (inclusive of GST), while the UH572 will be selling at S$1,298 (inclusive of GST) at the PC Show 2012.

The 13.3-inch LIFEBOOK SH772 and SH572 are equipped with the latest third generation Intel Core processors that can deliver dynamic performance and security, enhanced user experience and longer battery life. Both come with the enhanced Anytime USB Charge for continuous charging of more mobile devices even when the LIFEBOOK is turned off. The SH772 is available in Comfort Black soft finish and priced from S$2,888 (inclusive of GST), while the SH572 comes in stylish Shiny Black, Ebony White, and Garnett Red at S$2,088 (inclusive of GST).

MSI shows Futuremark's 3DMark for Windows 8 benchmark at Computex Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/msi-shows-futuremark-s-3dmarkfor-windows-8-benchmark-at-computex/16167.html June 5th, 2012

And some more pics of the models at the event Like two years ago, also during Computex, when MSI showed Futuremark's 3DMark 11 Deep Sea Demo, visitors to the popular Taiwanese AIB maker's booth can catch a short demo loop of the upcoming 3DMark for Windows 8 running on a high end system equipped with a pair of GTX 680 Lightning in SLi. Video of 3DMark for Windows 8: Futurmark's upcoming 3DMark for Windows 8 (DX9 and DX11, will allow apples-to-apples comparison between ARM and X86 powered devices) demo was shown at MSI's booth section dedicated to the release of the new GTX 680 Lightning, which we reported about previously. The benchmark is expected to be released later this year after the launch of Windows 8.

The system powering the demo was quite high end, loaded with a Sandy Bridge-E 3960X processor, X79 Big BangXPower II motherboard and a pair of GTX 680 Lightning 11

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in SLi. Expert eyes of yours truly estimates the framerate of the demo sequence to be between 20-50FPS, which does not bode well with lesser hardware and relatively puny processors on tablets.

MSI Afterburner software monitoring we shown on an adjacent monitor next to the running demo, showing the GPU usage to be 99% and the core temperature at 63 degrees celsius with the fan speed hovering below 50%. The temps could probably be better if the components placed not inside a passively ventiliated acrylic enclosure.

ASUS ROG Mars III sighted - Dual GTX 680 with 8GB of RAM! Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/asus-rog-mars-iii-sighted--dualgtx-680-with-8gb-of-ram-/16166.html June 5th, 2012

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a dual GTX 680 with 4GB of ram). According to our sources Nvidia does not usually allow AIB vendors to release custom designs of their dual GPU cards (GTX590 and GTX295 comes to mind), limiting the amount of differentation among competitors other than price.

ASUS's ROG MARS III is decked with the trademark red and black theme of their Rampage/Maximus motherboards, and uses a triple fan heatpiped cooler within double slot form factor, a welcome change from the obtuse three-slot of their DirectCU II cards from past. There are three 8-pin PCIe connectors (implying up to a whopping 525W of power draw potential) present on the board and a red button to activate 100% fan speed for overclocking. For display outputs we get a single mini-DP port and three DVI headers. Sadly, there is only a single SLi connector which limits things up to only 4way GPU.

The project manager on-site told us that the board we are seeing is still an early engineering sample and that they will still be making some tweaks to its PCB and cooler design before shipping sometime later this year. Since its predecessor MARS II (dual GTX 580) was one of the most expensive and elusive cards ever, we won't be too surprised if the MARS III follows suit.

Its raining GPUs here at Computex Taipei, and the latest offering revealed by ASUS's Republic of Gamers team after their HD 7970 Matrix is the dual Nvidia Kepler GK104 based MARS III, featuring an unprecedented 8GB of GDDR5 memory and a triple-fan dual slot cooler. Admittingly, a lot of us are confused why these dual GTX 680s boards exist (e.g EVGA's GTX680 2Win Gemini) since there is already the rather dashing GTX 690 (which is also 12

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three guards without slowing his stride. The game is due out in the spring of 2013.

Microsoft's E3 Keynote Speech Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/microsoft-s-e3-keynotespeech/16165.html June 5th, 2012

Microsoft has shown its plan for the future with their E3 presentation, focusing less on hardcore gamers than on integration into every part of Xbox 360 owners’ lives. They continued their commitment to core gamers, however, with blockbuster announcements and premieres scattered throughout the presentation. The first was a cinematic and gameplay trailer for the highly anticipated Halo 4. The tagline “an ancient evil has awoken” seems to imply that the third race seen in the gameplay is the Precursors, a race mentioned in the Halo lore but never seen in the games. There seem to be some gameplay enhancements and graphical flourishes that haven’t been seen in previous games in the series. We will keep our eyes open about this one as the release date, which was vaguely hinted at being sometime “this year,” draws closer.

Also shown was a new Splinter Cell game. Subtitled “Blacklist,” this game sees Sam Fisher in the role of the leader of his shadowy organization, calling the shots and attempting to stop a terrorist plot to strike at a set of countries on the “blacklist,” to whom they have issued an ultimatum to withdraw all troops or “[they] will bring the war to [the blacklisted countries’] home lands.” The demo showed off the execution mechanic, which allows Sam to mark multiple targets before taking each of them out in a cinematic flair. The developers emphasized that this mechanic, previously seen in the last game, was more fluid and dynamic, allowing for more kill opportunities, such as a moment where Sam ran through an encampment and killed

EA Sports was next, with lots of emphasis on Kinect integration within the games. They demoed FIFA 13, which uses Kinect’s voice recognition to allow for substitutions and formation changes without entering a menu. Interestingly, and somewhat hilariously, the game will issue a yellowcard to a player if they swear at the referee for a bad call. Next, Joe Montana, famed quarterback for the San Francisco 49’ers, came out to demo the play-calling and audible calling features in Madden 13 with Kinect’s voice sensor. He was able to seamlessly change plays and call hot-routes on the fly. Madden 13 was also used in another demo, but we’ll get to that momentarily. More videos were shown, with a Fable game tied into the Kinect sensor, which seemed like it will be just another disappointing Kinect shooting gallery tie-in, Forza Horizon, coming out October 23rd, which takes the Forza level of detail on track racing and translates it to road races, and the next Gears of War game, Judgment. The trailer seems to show the humans losing the war, then drops a bomb by showing the main character, who the viewer assumes to be the usual Marcus Fenix, to instead be Baird, a supporting character from the previous three games. All we know at this point is that it looks to be the same Gears you know and love, and it releases sometime in 2013. Next, Kinect was showcased, as the presenter announced that Kinect’s voice recognition software was getting support for 12 new languages, before proceeding to demo the Spanish capabilities of the device. He then announced that Kinect and Xbox would also be getting 35 new content providers, including Nickelodeon, Univision, WatchESPN, the NBA, and the NHL, all in full high definition, and all integrated with the Kinect sensor. Next, Xbox Music, Microsoft’s answer to iTunes and Google Play, was announced, with a library of “more than 30 million songs” at launch. No word was given on exactly how the service would function, other than that it was integrated across Windows 8, Windows Phones, and Xbox. Next, Nike announced that they were bringing their Nike + fitness program to the Kinect, tying it into their other services and using it to deliver “the same training [they] give [their] star athletes” at the Nike Training Center. Kinect’s motion sensor reportedly allows them to give feedback as accurately as their specialized equipment at the Training Center does, which is good news for gamers wanting to get into shape. The program will launch during the holiday season this year. Other games were announced throughout the presentation, including a demo of Tomb Raider, more information on the 13

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South Park game, now subtitled “The Stick of Truth,” as well as various Xbox Live Arcade games. The most impressive idea, however, was Xbox SmartGlass. SmartGlass is Microsoft’s method of integrating themselves into your life at every level possible, and I for one welcome our new Redmond-based overlords. By tying your smartphone, tablet, laptop, and console together into one seamless environment, Microsoft is looking to deliver a far richer multimedia experience. For instance, your Windows 8 tablet could be used to control a video game. The example used here was Madden 13, where a player doesn’t like his play choices for the current situation; he uses his tablet to draw a new play, and then runs it in the game, tapping the player on the tablet to pass the ball to him at just the right moment to score a touchdown. SmartGlass isn’t just for games, however. Imagine you’re sitting at home, watching the Game of Thrones on HBO Go (again, the example used). Your tablet could become a map of Westeros while you’re watching, letting you know where events are taking place and providing more information on the world of the show. Or maybe you’re watching a movie on the go, but you get home before the movie’s over; rather than sit and finish watching on the tablet, you could send it directly to the console, continuing from the moment you were at on the tablet, which now becomes a method of receiving information on the cast, plot, characters, whatever the director or producer wants to provide that they couldn’t before without breaking your immersion in the movie. Internet Explorer was also announced as coming to Xbox, with SmartGlass and Kinect integration. Kinect works as a voice-input device, allowing you to control the browser with your voice, while your smartphone, which tends to be within arm’s reach of almost a billion people around the world while they watch use their TV at home, becomes the cursor and, presumably, the keyboard, allowing you to interact with the page exactly as you would normally. The final demonstration was for the highly anticipated Call of Duty: Black Ops 2. The game was shown in a playable form, with some interesting weapons and situations, ranging from a sniper rifle with variable power that can shoot through walls and equipped with an infrared scope, to automated flying drones that attack targets marked by the player. The plot revolves around terrorists taking control of armies of automated drones used by the US military, and the player has to fight back. Look for more of our E3 coverage as the week goes on.

Samsung Galaxy S III to launch on five carriers in the U.S this month Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/samsung-galaxy-s-iii-to-launch-onfive-carriers-in-the-u.s-this-month/16163.html June 5th, 2012

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will not feature a quad-core processor, like the 3G version in Europe and India. Samsung will be offering the Galaxy S III on five carriers in the United States, beginning this month. The phone will not feature a quad-core processor, like the 3G version in Europe and India. The carriers who will have the phone are AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, Verizon Wireless and U.S. Cellular. Information about pricing and retail availability was not released by Samsung. This information will be released by the carriers themselves over the next few weeks. Late last month, an unlocked version of the device was selling on Amazon for $800.

Samsung did reveal that cellular services will start from $199. Last month, at the launch of the Galaxy S III in London, Samsung announced that the device would sport a quadcore 1.4 GHZ processor based on the ARM Cortex A9. In India and Europe, 3G versions of the phone do have a quad-core processor. In the U.S, however, the device will instead feature a dual-core 1.5GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 processor. According to Samsung, the dual core processor will offer speed and performance increases comparable to that of a quad-core processor, while preserving battery life. A Samsung spokeswoman also explained that the processor is better fit for U.S networks. "We get the same speeds because we are using [the] Krait version of the ARM architecture," she said. The Galaxy S III runs on Android 4.0 ("Ice Cream Sandwich", or ICS) with TouchWiz enhancements and 2GB of internal RAM. The device sports 4.8-inch HD Super AMOLED touchscreen display with Gorilla Glass 2.0 from Corning to protect the display from cracks and scratches. According to Samsung, the phone is crafted for optimum performance on the country’s fastest 4G LTE and HSPA+ 42.

MSI GTX 680 Lightning makes its debut at Computex Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/msi-gtx-680-lightning-makes-itsdebut-at-computex/16164.html June 5th, 2012

Samsung will be offering the Galaxy S III on five carriers in the United States, beginning this month. Howver the phone 14

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Hot on the heels of their new BigBang MPower line of motherboards, MSI is showing off her overclocking oriented GTX 680 Lightning at their Nangang booth during this year's Computex Taipei. Retaining the much acclaimed Twin Frozr IV cooler from the Radeon 7970 Lightning (our review), the MSI GTX 680 Lightning edition promises to marry cooling efficiency with overclocking dexterity. No details on the clock speeds yet but we were a tad disappointed that it only came with 2GB of frame buffer instead of the 4GB that we're starting to see from the competition. The new boy also incorporates Military Class III components and its GPU reactor contraption which provides extra capacitors behind the core for improved power potential.

The GTX 680 Lightning retains the same I/O panel configuration as the reference cards (gold plated though) with a single DP, HDMI and two DVI connectors.

At the other end of the card we get the usual 3x3 OC voltage check points (VGPU, VMem, VPLL) and 8 + 8 pin PCIe power connectors for some extreme power draw.

iOS 6 to feature system wide Facebook integration Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/ios-6-to-feature-system-widefacebook-integration/16162.html June 5th, 2012

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According to 9to5mac, Facebook will be integrated into iOS 6 in a system wide fashion, similar to what iOS already has with Twitter. According to 9to5mac, Facebook will be integrated into iOS 6 in a system wide fashion, similar to what iOS already has with Twitter.

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World IPv6 Day Coming Y12K? Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/world-ipv6-day-coming-y12k-/16158.html June 5th, 2012

The Internet is set for one of its most radical and massive changes in its history, and you won't even notice. How many of you know of the coming apocalypse? No, I’m not talking about the zombies. I did an article on that earlier. I’m talking about the global IPv4 address shortage, which should soon become just as irrelevant as the zombies.

Mockup of faceboom sharing in iOS photos application - from 9to5mac iOS 6 integration with Facebook was reported a few days ago by TechCrunch. This matter has been a topic of interest but doubt for some time, after Apple and Facebook tried to negotiate integration into iOS 4. Those talks fell apart, and while a Facebook application is available in the iOS store, no official integration has ever been made between iOS and Facebook. But, apparently that is going to change soon. 9to5mac, citing “sources familiar” with the matter, reports that iOS 6 Facebook integration will be very similar to the integration that iOS already has with Twitter. On Apple’s mobile platform, users will be able to set their Facebook login in their account settings. This will then keep them logged in for all applications integrated with Facebook. Like Twitter, there will be an option to share directly to Facebook from the iOS photos application. Sharing photos will bring up what is being called a “social sheet” by some to post an accompanying status message with what is being shared. Besides sharing content, Facbook integration in iOS will also be present on the platform's App store. A feature called “App liking” will be available, so that users can tap an actual Facebook “like button” on an application page. The app will then be shared to their Facebook Timeline, with an optional accompanying status message. This will be very useful as a publicity feature to help increase exposure and discoverability for applications. There has been much talk lately regarding a “Facebook phone”, which many critics have been quick to denounce. It goes without saying that the iPhone is a very popular smartphone. The more phones that can be readily purchased with Facebook support, the less sense the idea of a “Facebook phone” is actually making.

First, a little background for those of you who have no idea what I’m talking about. The Internet sends signals to servers based on an addressing system. When I say “internet address,” you might be thinking of “www.google.com” or something similar (like this site!), but I’m really talking about 173.194.37.51. That’s Google’s IPv4 address, the actual address of the server housing Google’s webpage. Every DNS server on the web knows where to send a signal when it’s addressed to that specific string of numbers. I covered this a bit in my article about destroying the Internet. The problem, and thus the coming apocalypse, is caused by the fact that we are running out of IPv4 addresses. This may seem astounding when you consider that IPv4, which creates addresses from four numbers ranging from 0 to 255 (why those particular number were chosen is another article entirely), gives us a total of roughly 4.3 billion addresses to choose from. Even after taking overhead addresses used for network administration and unusable addresses out of the equation, there should be plenty of addresses available. So what happened? Smartphones, that’s what happened. Over the past decade the number of mobile devices connecting to the Internet has exploded, and each device needs its own address. This is compounded by the rapid expansion of computer use at home and at work, as well as the expansion of data centers and servers to house the growth of the content on the Internet, all of which needs IP addresses. So now that we know what the problem is, what’s the solution? Well, it’s a little thing called IPv6. IPv6 is the next version of the IP protocol, and it’s so massive that it’s hard to wrap your head around. With IPv6, we could give each of the 7 billion people living on this planet 4.8 x 10^28 addresses (that’s 48 followed by 27 0s). Think about that for a second. That’s a massive number of addresses. The address also looks different from IPv4 to IPv6. An IPv6 address doesn’t have just 4 numbers, it has 8 4-digit hexadecimal numbers, written like this: fe80:0000:0000:0000:0202:b3ff:fe1e:8329. The zeros can be shortened to make it easier to read, so it could also be written as fe80:0:0:0:202:b3ff:fe1e:8329, or even fe80::202:b3ff:fe1e:8329. An interesting occurrence, then, is the loopback address (the address where the computer is talking to itself) for IPv6, which is 0:0:0:0:0:0:0:1, or ::1.

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Back to the coming apocalypse, or rather the end of the coming apocalypse; at 0001 GMT, on Wednesday, June 6, 2012, all DNS servers across the world will turn IPv6 support on permanently. Most internet users won’t even notice that the change has been made, because home computers have been building in support for IPv6 for a few years now, and most ISPs will take another few years to turn IPv4 off entirely. Even with both IPv4 and IPv6 running simultaneously, users won’t be blocked from certain parts of the web if they don’t meet certain requirements; certain IPv4 addresses have been reserved and are used to “tunnel” requests between IPv6 servers through IPv4 connections.

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(MS-7751 v2.1). Apart from the identical PCI-Express slot layout, there are quite a few differences between the two. To begin with, the LGA1155 socket is powered by a stronger 16phase VRM, with SFC chokes and DrMOS, which is stronger than that of the Z77A-GD80. Apart from the 24-pin ATX and 8-pin EPS, the board draws power from a 6-pin PCIe power connector, which supports the add-on cards.

In essence, this Wednesday should be the biggest day that you won’t even notice.

MSI BigBang MPower Series Motherboards Detailed Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/msi-bigbang-mpower-seriesmotherboards-detailed/16160.html June 5th, 2012

MSI Showed off its brand new line of motherboards for overclockers, the Big Bang MPower. The lineup includes two models, the Z77 MPower (LGA1155, Z77 Express), and X79 MPower (LGA2011, X79 Express). The design-focus is backing the platform with a strong VRM, and adding a load of things to tinker with. MSI has had its chances at solidifying a brand of motherboards for the high-margin (but low-volume) gameroverclocker segment, which its rivals are tageting (eg: Republic of Gamers by ASUS, G1.Killer by GIGABYTE, and Fatal1ty by ASRock). Its latest is creation of the Big Bang MPower line, which according to the people at MSI we spoke with, have been created taking in a lot of feedback from PC enthusiasts across various tech fora. The MPower series will be launched with two models, the Z77 MPower (socket LGA1155) and X79 MPower (socket LGA2011), targeting the "Ivy Bridge" and "Sandy Bridge-E HEDT" processor platforms, respectively. We begin with taking a look at the Z77 MPower.

As mentioned before, the Z77 MPower has an identical expansion slot layout to that of the Z77A-GD65, with three PCI-Express 3.0 x16 (x16/NC/NC or x8/x8/NC or x8/x4/ x4); and four PCI-Express 2.0 x1 slots. The Z77 MPower is not big on SATA connectivity, with just two SATA 6 Gb/ s, four SATA 3 Gb/s ports; it has four more USB 3.0 ports than the Z77 PCH expends (totaling 8), with connectivity that includes 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth, gigabit Ethernet, and display outputs that include HDMI and DisplayPort. Overclocker-friendly features of the Z77 MPower include "OC Certification", OC-in Warranty (warranty valid even on damage caused by overclocking), and "total fan control."

Pictured above, is the X79 MPower, MSI's latest socket LGA2011 motherboard. While the company didn't place a placard next to the exhibit, we've learned a few things about this beast. Its PCB layout is largely derived from that of the X79A-GD65 (8D), with a few notable additions. The LGA2011 processor is powered by a 9+2 phase VRM, which draws power from two 8-pin EPS connectors.

Pictured above, the Z77 MPower carries the internal codename MS-7751 v3.0, which implies that its PCB layout may have been derived from that of the Z77A-GD65

Its expansion slot layout is identical to that of the X79AGD65 (8D), with five PCI-Express x16 and one PCI-Express x1. An additional pair of SATA 6 Gb/s ports are added. Its connectivity is revamped to accommodate 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth, and a few additional USB 3.0 ports, apart from a similar OC feature-set to the one found on the Z77 MPower.

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The Z77 MPower could occupy a price-point between those of the Z77A-GD65 and Z77A-GD80; while the X79 MPower occupies one between those of the X79A-GD65 (8D), and BigBang XPowerII.

China bans searches for Tiananmen Square massacre Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/china-bans-searches-for-tiananmensquare-massacre/16161.html June 5th, 2012

In yet another crackdown on free speech, China has banned searches for terms relating to the 1989 Tiananmen Square massacre, where hundreds of pro-democracy protesters were killed by government forces. In yet another crackdown on free speech, China has banned searches for terms relating to the 1989 Tiananmen Square massacre, where hundreds of pro-democracy protesters were killed by government forces.

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location, with many born in China since the event completely unaware of what happened. The US government called on China to provide a “full public accounting of those killed, detained or missing,” and also called for those imprisoned to be freed. The request is likely to fall on deaf ears, however. Google previously got into hot water with the Chinese government over its censorship of search results, resulting in a lengthy stand-off between the two before they eventually reached a compromise, where users can redirect to the Hong Kong website. Tensions still exist, however, and Google has been very vocal about its opposition to the regime's clampdown on freedom of information.

Judge denies Apple request to bar Steve Jobs quotes in Motorola trial Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/judge-denies-apple-request-to-barsteve-jobs-quotes-in-motorola-trial/16159.html June 5th, 2012

The revolt on 4 June, 1989, 23 years ago to this day, is being censored from Chinese search engines, with terms like “six four,” “23,” “candle” and “never forget” failing to return any mention of the event. There are even reports that the Chinese characters for the word “today” are banned and the emoticon for a candle has been disabled on Weibo, the country's equivalent to Twitter. The move suggests a widespread government crackdown on any references to the killings on that day, which some human rights groups estimate could number into the thousands.

A judge has refused Apple's request to prevent quotations from its co-founder and former CEO, the late Steve Jobs, to be used in the trial against Motorola Mobility. A judge has refused Apple's request to prevent quotations from its co-founder and former CEO, the late Steve Jobs, to be used in the trial against Motorola Mobility. Select comments by Jobs featured in Walter Isaacson's biography of the man can be utilised by Motorola, which is now owned by Google, as part of its defence after Apple failed to secure a ban on them. The passages include the following revealing statement by Jobs: “Our lawsuit is saying, 'Google, you fucking ripped off the iPhone, wholesale ripped us off.' Grand theft. I'm willing to go to thermonuclear war on this.”

Searches for information on Tiananmen Square simply return tourist information on the location, conveniently glossing over one of a number of blotches on the history of the ruling regime. This has proven fairly effective in removing the negative connotations associated with that 18

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Apple clearly views Jobs' remarks as a potential hurdle to winning the case. In its filing it said: “To avoid any potential prejudice to Apple if Motorola attempts to use the book to appeal to the jury's passion, Apple asks that the court prevent any reference to the Jobs book during the trial.”

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The ROG Matrix 7970 is ASUS' addition to a growing line of upcoming Radeon HD 7970 graphics cards by various AMD add-in board (AIB) partners, with extremely high (≥25% factory OC), although its exact clock speeds are not revealed at this point. What we do know, is that the card will be backed by a strong VRM, which will support its factory OC, and then some. The card draws power from two 8-pin PCIe power connectors.

The judge, Richard Posner, denied the request, providing no explanation for his decision. Apple is attempting to remove the book as evidence from its case against Samsung also, but the judge's decision in this trial may affect that one. Apple also suffered another setback late last week when Judge Posner ordered that Apple must not insinuate that the case should be a popularity contest between the companies and their products, particularly given how well-liked Apple products generally are. This obviously has no bearing on whether or not Motorola allegedly infringed Apple's patents. The case goes to court later this month.

ASUS Shows Off ROG Matrix 7970 Graphics Card Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/asus-shows-off-rog-matrix-7970graphics-card/16157.html June 5th, 2012

ASUS latest graphics card in its coveted Republic of Gamers series, is the ROG Matrix 7970, a high-end graphics card with a Radeon HD 7970 on steroids, with enough connectivity to drive 6-display Eyefinity. ASUS latest graphics card in its coveted Republic of Gamers series, is the ROG Matrix 7970, a high-end graphics card with a Radeon HD 7970 GPU on steroids, with enough connectivity to drive 6-display Eyefinity.

Apart from consolidated voltage measurement points, the card has override switches for fan-speed, and voltages, including a one-push safe-mode. LEDs update the user on voltage. The card packs two BIOS ROMs, one with the factory-OC, and the other with a failsafe BIOS, which can be toggled by flicking a small switch on the top of the card (next to the CFBI connectors). The card is cooled by an enormous triple-slot cooling solution, which consists of two aluminum fin stacks, which draw heat from the GPU base, and are ventilated by two 120 mm fans. The top of the cooler has a groovy multi-color illuminated ASUS Matrix logo. Display outputs of the Matrix 7970 could include two dual-link DVI, and four DisplayPort connectors, which amount to the card being able to drive 6display Eyefinity. More details are awaited.

EA unveils E3 game line-up Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/ea-unveils-e3-game-lineup/16156.html June 5th, 2012

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Electronic Arts (EA) has unveiled its line-up of games that will feature at the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) at the Los Angeles Convention Center this week. Electronic Arts (EA) has unveiled its line-up of games that will feature at the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) at the Los Angeles Convention Center this week. The flagship titles will include Battlefield 3, Medal of Honor, Crysis 3, Madden NFL, FIFA 13, Star Wars: The Old Republic, SimCity, Dead Space 3, and Need For Speed Most Wanted. Two new themed digital expansion for Battlefield 3, entitled Close Quarters and Armored Kill, will be unveiled at the event. They will launch for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and PC, with Close Quarters releasing this month and Armored Kill releasing in September. Crysis 3 will be featured, showing off amazing graphics and gameplay of Prophet as he traverses the Seven Wonders of Liberty Dome in New York City, combining the cityscape of the second game with the jungle adventure of the first. The game is scheduled for release in 2013.

Medal of Honor: Warfighter, due in October, lets players experience what it's like to be some of the most elite soldiers in the US army, tying in gameplay with real-life terrorist activity, with Tier 1 operators available in multiplayer. A new SimCity game, using the GlassBox simulation engine, is coming in February 2013, featuring more city-building, with the added functionality of connecting with friends and facing “real-world challenges,” which likely involve things like traffic congestion, pollution, crime and disasters. Star Wars: The Old Republic has suffered some bad publicity recently, with subscriptions falling from 1.7 million users to 1.2 million, and staff layoffs and server merges ensuing. EA and BioWare are still promising a lot for the remaining playerbase, however, including more PvP, more end-game group content, new social features, and new storylines. Update 1.3, featuring a group finder, is just around the corner.

Sports fans won't be missing out either, with FIFA 13, scheduled for release in Autumn, opening up the latest football action to almost every platform imaginable, including all the current-generation consoles, handhelds, and iOS and Android devices. Fans of American football will have Madden NFL 13, due in August, and NCAA Football 13, due out on 10 July, to look forward to, while basketball supporters will have NBA Live 13, releasing in October, and hockey fans will have NHL 13, releasing in September, making a healthy line-up for EA Sports.

All of this and more will feature as part of EA's extensive presentation at this year's E3. Stay tuned for more details from the popular gaming event over the coming days.

CDC Says Zombies Not Real Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/cdc-says-zombies-notreal/16154.html June 5th, 2012

The CDC has officially stated that zombies do not exist, after a string of bizarre and gruesome news stories captured the popular imagination. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) issued an official statement over the weekend in response to several gruesome attacks and incidents of cannibalism in the past week. In the statement, the CDC officially denied the existence of zombies in an attempt to calm the hysteria over a coming “zombie apocalypse.” 20

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According to a report published by the Huffington Post, David Daigle, a spokesman for the CDC, said that the CDC “does not know of a virus or condition that would reanimate the dead (or one that would present zombie-like symptoms).” The attack in Miami that stirred up the zombie fears isn’t the only zombie-like attack in recent news, however. In Canada, Luka Rocco Magnotta, an adult-film actor, murdered a man with an ice pick before eating the corpse. In Maryland, a 21year-old college student admitted that he had dismembered his roommate before eating his heart and brain. Gawker is also reporting that health officials and hazmat teams have so far been unable to identify the source of what is being called a “mysterious rash” breaking out over various parts of Florida. In one reported incident, a 41-year-old man with the rash named Zachary Bird went on a rampage after he was pulled over by police officers, spitting blood into one trooper’s eyes and banging his head on the officer’s cruiser several times. In a bid for understatement of the year, the police report described his demeanor as “extremely agitated and enraged.” For some, the CDC report should offer comfort. Others will worry about the phrase “does not know of,” though we would like to stress that zombies as understood in popular culture are a work of fiction. The CDC is the foremost knowledge on diseases and mental conditions, and if they say say that it’s not zombies, that’s good enough for this writer. As of this writing, “zombie apocalypse” ranks as the 19th most popular search term on Google, though it peaked over the weekend at number 3 on the list.

ASUS ROG Maximus V Extreme Pictured Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/asus-rog-maximus-v-extremepictured/16155.html June 5th, 2012

The third and final addition to ASUS Republic of Gamers (ROG) Maximus V motherboard series is the Maximus V Extreme (M5E). ASUS reserved its launch to follow that of the Maximus V Formula and the already-launched Maximus V Gene, in what is a classic case of saving the best for the last. ASUS launched its ROG Maximus V line of socket LGA1155 motherboards based on the Intel Z77 Express chipset, with the Maximus V Gene, which launched alongside the company's first wave of P8Z77-V line of motherboards. Its second addition to the series, the Maximus V Formula, has since been picture in several events, but is yet to be launched. Its top model, the Maximus V Extreme, has been MIA, until now.

ASUS showed off an early version of the Maximus V Extreme. The company is yet to finalize a whole bunch of things, including heatsinks' designs. What sets the Maximus V Extreme apart from the Maximus V Formula, is PCIExpress load-out. While the Formula relies entirely on the PCI-Express 3.0 x16 link from the processor to wire out its three PCI-Express 3.0 x16 slots, in x16/NC/NC or x8/x8/NC or x8/x4/x4 configurations, depending on how they're populated; the Maximus V Extreme incorporates a PLX PEX8747 PCI-Express 3.0 switch, which doubles the platform's PCIe lane budget. The Maximus V Extreme, hence, has four PCI-Express 3.0 x16 (red) slots, which can be arranged as x16/NC/x16/NC, x16/NC/x8/x8, or x8/x8/ x8/x8, depending on how they are populated. Other (visible) expansion slots of the Maximus V Extreme include a PCI-Express 2.0 x16 (electrical x4), and an openended PCI-Express x4. While the PLX PEX8747 expands the PCIe lane budget of the processor, a PLX PEX8613 bridge chip doubles the PCIe lane budget of the Z77 PCH. Apart from wiring out additional PCIe slots, the bridge helps drive a variety of onboard devices, including a Thunderbolt controller (single Thunderbolt + mini-DP connector), at least three additional SATA 6 Gb/s controllers (we count a total of 12 SATA ports), and an unknown number of additional USB 3.0 controllers. The LGA1155 socket is powered by a 12-phase Digi+ VRM, which draws power from an 8-pin EPS and a 4-pin ATX connector, just like the Crosshair V Formula. There appears to be the usual contingent of features exclusive to the ROG family, inslucing consolidated voltage-measurement points, ROG Connect, etc., and connectivity that includes 802.11 b/ g/n, Thunderbolt (with mini-DP display output), USB 3.0, HDMI (display output), 8-channel HD audio, probably two gigabit Ethernet interfaces, etc. The Maximus V Extreme will be further detailed in the days to come. Its launch is expected to follow that of the Maximus V Formula.

ASUS ZEUS Combines X79 HEDT with Dual-GPU Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/asus-zeus-combines-x79-hedt-withdual-gpu/16152.html June 5th, 2012

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ASUS has an enviable amount of engineering potential and resources. Often, the two come together, to create magical PC enthusiast hardware, such as its ROG MARS and ROG ARES series super high-end graphics cards. The next such creation is ZEUS, which is a shocking fusion between a socket LGA2011 motherboard, and a dual-GPU graphics card.

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of 8-pin and 6-pin PCIe power connectors. The outputs of both the GPUs are given out as a mini-DP + Thunderbolt connector, a 2-port controller is driving the Thunderbolt links, apart from standard DisplayPort and HDMI.

If there was one product that forced visitors' jaws to drop to the floor, it was ASUS ZEUS. A concept X79 motherboard, the ZEUS demonstrates ASUS' enormous engineering potential. It is a combination of a Sandy BridgeE HEDT (LGA2011, X79 Express) motherboard and a dualGPU graphics card occupying the expansion slot area. The processor, its VRM, all onboard devices, and two "highgrade PCI-Express 3.0" GPU subsystems occupy the same PCB.

There are as many as 8 SATA 6 Gb/s ports on the ZEUS, two from the X79 PCH, six from additional controllers. Including the four SATA 3 Gb/s ports from the PCH, there are a total of 10 internal, and 2 eSATA ports. There are a total of 12 USB 3.0 ports, 8 on the rear-panel, 4 via headers. To top off the monstrous package, there is one gigabit Ethernet interface, and 8+2 channel HD audio.

The LGA2011 socket is surrounded on all four sides by components that matter. To its north, is the 10-phase Digi + VRM that powers the processor. To its east and west are a total of eight DDR3 DIMM slots, which can hold up to 128 GB of quad-channel DDR3 memory, beyond the 64 GB limit for unregistered DIMMs of SB-E HEDT platform. To its south are two sets of graphics card VRM areas, which power each of the two GPU systems. The two GPUs are directly wired to the two PCI-Express 3.0 x16 links of the processor, while the third PCI-Express 3.0 x8 link goes into driving other onboard components.

ASUS was pretty explicit in stating that the ZEUS is a concept-design. It's not a question of when, but if the motherboard ever makes it to the market. If it does, it will be in very limited quantities, and will cost a fortune.

MSI Rolls Out GTX 670 Power Edition Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/msi-rolls-out-gtx-670-poweredition/16151.html June 5th, 2012

At this point ASUS didn't reveal exactly which GPUs are behind that chunky heatsink, but we have a hunch that it's a pair of AMD Radeon HD 7970 (Tahiti XT) GPUs. What makes us doubly sure that these are AMD-made GPUs, is that NVIDIA does not recognize the Sandy Bridge-E HEDT platform as PCI-Express 3.0-compliant, something ASUS is stressing on, on the marketing poster of the ZEUS. Each GPU has its own set of memory, and draws power from a pair

MSI announced a pair of new graphics cards under its GeForce GTX 670 Power Edition lineup. The two combine MSI's in-house PCB design with its Twin Frozr IV cooling solution, and feature triple over-voltage, and an enhanced PWM design.

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MSI launched two new graphics cards based on the common idea of a GeForce GTX 670 Power Edition, a standard variant which sticks to NVIDIA reference clock speeds of 915 MHz core, 980 MHz GPU Boost, and memory speed of 6.00 GHz (model: N670GTX PE 2GD5); and an overclocked (OC) variant, with 1019 MHz core, 1079 MHz GPU Boost, and an untouched 6.00 GHz memory (model: N670GTX PE 2GD5/ OC).

MSI's Power Edition GTX 670, evidently, uses an in-house design PCB, which could be made out by its length. One of its design goals include providing a stronger VRM than the one NVIDIA reference design PCB offers. We could make out components such as SFC chokes (which don't whine on load), and expect MSI to use top-grade components such as International Rectifier DirectFETs, and Hi-C capacitors, all of which it used on its Radeon HD 7870 HAWK graphics card. MSI claims that the enhanced PWM design on its GTX 670 Power Edition is capable of delivering 25% higher current than NVIDIA's PCB. Its Triple Overvoltage feature gives user fine-tuning ability over GPU, Memory and PLL (Aux) power domains, using the Afterburner software.

The MSI GeForce GTX 670 Power Edition is 3-way and 2way SLI-capable (4-way SLI possible with a future driver update). Its display outputs include two dual-link DVI, and one each of HDMI and DisplayPort. The card is capable of driving up to four displays, and 3D Vision Surround, thanks to the Kepler GPU's revamped display logic. Based on the 28 nm GK104 silicon, the GeForce GTX 670 packs 1344 CUDA cores, 112 TMUs, 32 ROPs, and a 256-bit wide GDDR5 memory interface that is occupied by 2 GB of memory. MSI did not give out pricing information.

PC Show 2012 Promotions: SanDisk Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/pc-show-2012-promotionssandisk/16150.html June 5th, 2012

If you're looking to get a new solid state drive, microSDHC memory cards or USB thumbdrives, SanDisk might have some good offers for you. And yes, there are a couple of booths on Hall 4, Hall 6 and level 3 that are selling SanDisk products at the PC Show 2012. Read on. SanDisk Extreme Solid State Drive The other big feature of the MSI GeForce GTX 670 Power Edition, is the Twin Frozr IV cooling solution. The same solution can be found on the Radeon HD 7870 HAWK. The cooler uses a single large aluminum fin array that spans along the entire length of the card, to which heat from the GPU is fed by five 8 mm-thick nickel-plated copper heat pipes. The aluminum fin array is then ventilated by two 80 mm fans. The Twin Frozr IV cooler features an easily detachable shroud, which allows end users to clean the heatsink periodically, to keep dust away. The fan and shroud are made of dust-repellent plastics. MSI claims its Twin Frozr IV cooler offers temperatures 20째C lower, and is 11.7 dBA quieter than NVIDIA reference design cooling solution.

The SanDisk Extreme Solid State Drive claims to be up to ten times faster than a 7200 RPM hard disk drive, and enables 23

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users to boot their PC in less than 16 seconds and quickly shut down the system, delivering a significantly improved user experience to desktop and notebook users. It has no moving parts which means decreasing the risk of data loss due to shock and vibration and making it more reliable and durable than a typical hard disk drive. Usual Price: S$269 (120GB), S$499 (240GB), S$1,199 (480GB) PC Show Price: S$229 (120GB), S$449 (240GB), S$949 (480GB)

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kept safe from unwanted eyes with SanDisk’s SecureAccess software, while secure online backup (up to 2GB) gives the most important files on the drive additional protection against data loss. Usual Price: S$36 (16GB), S$63 (32GB), S$112 (64GB) PC Show Price: S$44.50 (16GB), S$79.50 (32GB), S$139.50 (64GB) The SanDisk booths can be located at the following:-

SanDisk Ultra microSDHC/microSDXC UHS-I Cards S/N 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12

The SanDisk Ultra microSDHC and microSDXC UHS-I cards are ideal for consumers who want to get the most out of today’s high-performance Android smartphones and tablets. The cards feature transfer speeds of up to 30MB/s, enabling apps to respond faster, and deliver UHS Speed Class 1 and Class 10 ratings for the highest video recording performance available, which make shooting Full HD video and highmegapixel images a breeze.

Reseller AD Industries Harvey Norman Sprint Cass Reddotphoto Newstead Best Bargain Directions Gain City Cybermind Bell Systems Kao Yap Addon

Booth Number B2095 B2008 B2035 & B2050 B2001 306 B2088 B2097 & B2111 B2006 & A2028 A2061 & A2047 B2089 A2029 A2001

PC Show 2012 Promotions: Samsung Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/pc-show-2012-promotionssamsung/16146.html June 5th, 2012

Usual Price: S$23 (16GB), S$55 (32GB), S$99 (64GB) PC Show Price: S$31 (16GB), S$63 (32GB), S$126 (64GB) SanDisk Extreme USB Flash Drive

Samsung will be at the PC Show 2012 this week. If you're looking for some good deals for TVs, digital cameras, laptops, smartphones or tablets, their booths can be located at A2009b and A2025 in Hall 4. Samsung Smart LED TV ES7500 and ES8000

The SanDisk USB 3.0-enabled Extreme USB Flash Drive allows you to transfer, store and share large files up to 10 times faster with speeds of up to 190 MB/sec. With a compact slider design, the Extreme USB makes it easy to carry your work around with you wherever you go. Data is 24

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PC Show price: TBA Samsung NX210 digital camera

The Samsung Smart LED TV ES8000 and ES7500 offer cutting-edge technologies that deliver clear images in both 2D and 3D. The ES8000 Micro Dimming Ultimate analyzes the picture in hundreds of pieces to optimize the LED backlight and video signal for each piece in real time, by increasing peak whites in areas of lower gradation. This leads to an overall 20 percent increase in brightness and allow home entertainment enthusiasts to enjoy richer colors, brighter pictures and higher contrast ratios. The technology also eliminates the "halo" effect and image distortion associated with diffused light. ES8000 also sports a new metallic U-shape stand that adds to the sophistication this TV brings to any room. The unique, minimalistic design belies its sturdiness and stability. Usual Price: 55” ES8000 - S$6,499; 55” ES7500 - S$5,999; 46” ES7500 - S$4,499 PC Show price: TBA Samsung WB850F digital camera

Available in black and white, the NX210 follows the NX’s design heritage, with a premium metallic finish. Like its predecessor the NX200, the NX210 also offers a 3-inch AMOLED display for viewing images and Full HD movies in brilliant resolution. With easy access to Wi-Fi functions, the NX210 allows quick sharing with friends and family, whilst with Samsung Mobile Link users can show off their best images on phones and tablets, or on the big screen with TV Link connecting the NX210 wirelessly to internet-enabled TVs. Usual Price: TBA PC Show price: TBA Samsung's booths can be located at A2009b and A2025 in Hall 4.

Gigabyte's 32-Phase Power Motherboard: Z77X-UP7 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/gigabyte-s-32-phase-powermotherboard-z77x-up7/16147.html June 5th, 2012

The WB850F features a 21x optical zoom, and a 16.2megapixel BSI CMOS sensor technology that can reduce image noise and distortion, even under low light conditions. It has SMART Wi-Fi technology that lets user email the photos or share them on social networks including Facebook, or post videos to YouTube via Wi-Fi connectivity. It also has built-in GPS and Live Landmark to download maps and find information from nearby locations. With Microsoft Sky Drive, it enables pictures to be easily accessible via the cloud.

Gigabyte showed off their new flagship Z77 motherboard, Z77X-UP7 which comes with a supermassive 32-phase power design. It is also one of the first boards on Ultra Durable 5 technology featuring the new International Rectifier IR3550 VRMs.

Usual Price: S$599 25

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Gigabyte showed off their new flagship Z77 motherboard, Z77X-UP7 which comes with a supermassive 32-phase power design. It is also one of the first boards on Ultra Durable 5 technology featuring the new International Rectifier IR3550 VRMs. These innovations allow for higher efficiency and a much smaller footprint.. According to a Gigabyte spokeperson, the cost of just having this 32-phase power using IR3550 is equivalent to a low-end motherboard. Other features of this board include Bluetooth 4.0, onboard mSATA slot for mSATA SSDs, 4-way SLI/CrossFireX, Lucid Virtu Universal MVP GPU virtualization, Dual Gigabit LAN and Realtek ALC898 audio.

Published by: VR-Zone

Press Release on Ultra Durable 5 Technology

Taipei, Taiwan, June, 5th 2011 – GIGABYTE TECHNOLGY Co. Ltd., a leading manufacturer of motherboards and graphics cards, today introduced their latest Ultra Durable™ 5 technology, featuring a range of high current capable components including the industry’s highest rated 60A IR3550 PowIRstage® ICs that provide the best quality power delivery to the CPU for record-breaking performance, cool and efficient operation and extended motherboard lifespan. GIGABYTE is yet again raising the bar of motherboard quality and durability with their Ultra Durable™ 5 technology, which includes high current capable components for the CPU power zone including the highest rated and awarded IR3550 PowIRstage® ICs from International Rectifier, 2X Copper PCB and high current Ferrite Core Chokes rated up to 60A which together are able to deliver up to 60°C* cooler temperatures than traditional motherboards. Featured on a range of new motherboards based the Intel® X79 and Z77 Express Chipsets, GIGABYTE Ultra Durable™ 5 technology is the next evolution in quality motherboard design. “As the exclusive motherboard manufacturer to utilize the amazingly efficient IR3550 PowIRstage® ICs from International Rectifier, GIGABYTE has spent a considerable amount of engineering resources to ensure our Ultra Durable™ 5 motherboards are our best Ultra Durable™ 26

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motherboards yet,” commented Henry Kao, Vice President of GIGABYTE Motherboard Business Unit. “GIGABYTE Ultra Durable™ 5 motherboards are especially optimized for water cooled systems and overclocked Intel® Core i7-3770K Ivy Bridge “K” SKU CPUs due to their exceptionally low operating temperatures, and make the perfect match for anyone looking to push their system to limits.”

Published by: VR-Zone June 5th, 2012

Toshiba announced the first consumer SSDs that utilize its 19 nm-class NAND flash memory. The flash memory innovator released as many as 11 new SSD models, spread across 2.5-inch standard, 2.5-inch 7 mm-thich, and mSATA form-factors. Toshiba announced the first consumer SSDs that utilize its 19 nm-class NAND flash memory. The flash memory innovator released as many as 11 new SSD models, spread across 2.5-inch standard, 2.5-inch 7 mm-thich, and mSATA form-factors, utilizing the 19 nm-class NAND flash memory which it announced in early-April.

“We are delighted that IR’s award winning IR3550 PowIRstage® provides the high current, thermal capability and outstanding performance to power GIGABYTE’s new Ultra Durable™ 5 motherboard series,” said Deepak Savadatti, Vice President and General Manager, IR’s Enterprise Power Business Unit. About IR3550 PowIRstage® ICs The award winning IR3550 PowIRstage® ICs feature greater power e¬fficiency and are the highest rated Power Stage in the industry, able to provide up to 60A of power. This ensures the best power delivery to the CPU, for more stable operation and better overclocking performance. GIGABYTE Ultra Durable™ 5 motherboards also use both IR digital PWM controllers and IR PowIRstage® ICs, for a uniquely seamless power delivery system. Single Package Design IR has leveraged its world class packaging technology developed for the DirectFET®, improving the thermal capability and layout of the PowIRstage® significantly over that of other MCM packages.

Toshiba Announces First SSDs with 19 nm-class NAND Flash Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/toshiba-announces-first-ssdswith-19-nm-class-nand-flash/16148.html

Apart from higher densities (capacities), the new SSDs offer a suite of new technologies that are Windows 8 optimized. These include SATA revision 3.1-compliance (new power-management features); Deterministic Zeroing TRIM, a performance-optimized TRIM garbage-collection mode that will be exclusively available with Windows 8 and future Linux kernels; Quadruple Swing-by Code (QSBC), a performance-optimized error-correction feature; and a read-only mode, which prolongs life offers security on devices such as IPCs. Among the 11 models launched, are four each for 2.5-inch standard and 2.5-inch 7 mm-thick form-factors, and three mSATA form-factor models. Apart from physical thickness, the two 2.5-inch lines are identical, and are available in capacities of 64 GB, 128 GB, 256 GB, and 512 GB. The 64 GB variant offers transfer rates as high as 440 MB/s, while the other variants offer transfer-rates up to 524 MB/s. The mSATA line includes 64 GB, 128 GB, and 256 GB variants, with comparable performance to their 2.5-inch cousins. The exact model numbers are tabled below.

Although announced today, Toshiba's new SSDs won't reach the markets before August.

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Published by: VR-Zone

Sony unveils VAIO Z, VAIO S, VAIO E and VAIO T Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/sony-unveils-vaio-z-vaio-s-vaio-eand-vaio-t/16145.html June 5th, 2012

Sony has introduced their VAIO Summer’12 series of notebooks which include the VAIO Z, VAIO S, VAIO E and the company's first Ultrabook, VAIO T. On top of that, the Japanese electronics company has also debut the new 15th anniversary VAIO Z model. Sony VAIO T

To commemodate the company's 15th anniversary, Sony has decided to come up with the anniversary model for the VAIO Z series. The new VAIO Z is designed for the mobile professional and has an elegantly sleek form factor, measuring 16.7mm thin and weighing slightly over 1kg. It claims to be constructed of carbon fibre in a hexa-shell design and is powered by Intel Core i7 quad-core processor with RAID-0 SSD for higher reliability and faster boot-up. The laptop is able to achieve up to 11 hours with optional battery, and features USB charging. With the Power Media Dock, the VAIO Z can support up to four displays (including the notebook's screen) via HDMI and VGA output. It will be available in stores from end June. While pricing has yet to be released, the 15th anniversary model could be retailing at S$3,999. Sony VAIO S

The Sony VAIO T claims to be the company's first Ultrabook to go to market, and comes equipped with full-featured connectivity including VGA, LAN, USB 3.0, USB 2.0 and HDMI ports. It also has a Memory Stick and SD card slot for convenience of viewing your photos or videos on the machine. The VAIO T uses a hybrid HDD and SSD drives that offers shorter boot time for faster operation and high capacity storage. It also features "Rapid Wake + Eco", faster USB charging, longer battery life, and Gesture Control that lets you interact with the copmuter with intuitive hand movements. Available in 11.6-inch and 13.3-inch displays, the Sony VAIO T is equipped with Intel's third generation 1.7GHz Core i5-3371U processor and runs Windows 7 Home Premium with Service Pack 1 (64-bit). The 11.6-inch model will be available from mid-June while the 13.3-inch model will retail from end-June at all Sony Stores and authroized outlets. Sony VAIO Z

Available in 13.3- and 15.5-inch LCD displays, the VAIO S is built to be a full-featured mobile PC with superb performance for both home and business users. Equipped with Intel's thid generation Core i7 processor and Dynamic Hybrid Graphics System - using two graphics processors to best suit the application - with Nvidia GeForce GT640M LE GPU or integrated Intel HD graphics 4000, the VAIO S boasts six hours of battery life and come with a slot-in optical drive to read your discs. It also features xLOUD and Clear Phase technologies that boost volume levels without distortion. Scheduled to retail this month, the 13.3-inch

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VAIO S series come in black, silver, white and pink finishes, while the 15.5-inch model is available only in black. Sony VAIO E

Among the five new kits launched today, are the HyperX T1 KHX26C11T1K2/8X, HyperX T1 KHX24C11T1K2/8X, HyperX T1 KHX21C11T1K2/16X, HyperX T1 KHX21C11T1K2/8X, and HyperX Blu KHX16C10B1K2/16X.

The Sony VAIO E comes in E14P, E series 11 and E series 15, and is designed for users who want smart, ease of use and choice of colors to fit one's lifestyle. The VAIO E Series 11 and 15 sport 11.6- and 15.5-inch displays respectively and are available in white, black and pink. It has a large touchpad with button-free control that lets you navigate and scroll pages easily. The VAIO E Series 11 will be available from mid June while the Series 15 will retail from end June.

Kingston Ships HyperX DDR3-2666 Dual-Channel Memory Kits Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/kingston-ships-hyperx-ddr3-2666dual-channel-memory-kits/16144.html June 5th, 2012

Kingston Technology started shipping its HyperX dualchannel DDR3 memory kits optimized for Intel Core "Ivy Bridge" platform, some of which come with profiles for speeds as high as DDR3-2666 MHz. The company also announced XMP certification of its upcoming HyperX DDR3-2800 MHz kit by Intel. Kingston Technology started shipping its HyperX dualchannel DDR3 memory kits optimized for Intel Core "Ivy Bridge" platform, some of which come with profiles for speeds as high as DDR3-2666 MHz. The company also announced XMP certification of its upcoming HyperX DDR3-2800 MHz kit by Intel.

The KHX26C11T1K2/8X, the star-attraction in this article, comes with advertised clock speed of DDR3-2666 MHz, and is optimized for Intel Core "Ivy Bridge" processors (probably because of its XMP v1.4 profile, which is not supported on older Sandy Bridge LGA1155 platform). It utilizes tall HyperX T1 heatsinks that help sustain its advertised speeds. It consists of two 4 GB modules that make up its 8 GB capacity. The modules achieve DDR3-2666 MHz (1333 MHz actual), with CAS latency of 11T, and DRAM voltage of 1.65V, which is particularly high for the newer breed of 20 nm-class DRAM. Kingstong kept the pricing under the wraps. The KHX24C11T1K2/8X (2x 4 GB), KHX21C11T1K2/16X (2x 8 GB), and KHX21C11T1K2/8X (2x 4 GB) also utilize the HyperX T1 heatsink design as pictured above. They pack XMP v1.4 profiles for DDR3-2400 MHz, DDR3-2133 MHz, and DDR3-2133 MHz, respectively. All three operate at their advertised speeds with a CAS latency of 11T. While the KHX24C11T1K2/8X operates at a DRAM voltage of 1.65V, the KHX21C11T1K2/16X, KHX21C11T1K2/8X make do with 1.60V. Lastly, there's the KHX16C10B1K2/16X, which comes with lighter HyperX Blu heatspreaders, packs two 8 GB modules that total 16 GB, and come with JEDEC profile of DDR3-1600 MHz (800 MHz actual), with CAS latency of 10T, and DRAM voltage of 1.50V. The HyperX T1 KHX24C11T1K2/8X, HyperX T1 KHX21C11T1K2/16X, HyperX T1 KHX21C11T1K2/8X, and HyperX Blu KHX16C10B1K2/16X are priced at US $89.99, $219.99, $74.99, and $129.99, respectively.

MSI Slider S20 Windows 8 Sliding Ultrabook Pictured Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/msi-slider-s20-windows-8-slidingultrabook-pictured/16143.html June 5th, 2012

MSI put to rest the looming question of whether it has Ultrabooks planned, by unveiling one of the industry's first implementations of Intel's "Letexo" sliding-Ultrabook formfactor, which was first shown to the world at IDF Beijing. 29

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MSI's Slider S20 is a Wintel at heart, combining 22 nm "Ivy Bridge" processor with Windows 8. MSI put to rest the looming question of whether it has Ultrabooks planned, by unveiling one of the industry's first implementations of Intel's "Letexo" sliding-Ultrabook formfactor, which was first shown to the world at IDF Beijing, 2012. MSI's Slider S20 is a Wintel at heart, combining 22 nm "Ivy Bridge" processor with Windows 8.

Published by: VR-Zone

his presentation that Thunderbolt devices designed for the Mac will not work seemlessly on the Windows PC without a certified driver.

Pictured above, the Slider S20 from MSI is a sliderUltrabook. It combines the functionality of a tablet, thanks to its responsive touchscreen, with that of a notebook, thanks to its slide-out base, which has a chiclet keyboard, for those extended typing sessions. At this point, we're unsure if the keyboard portion has a trackpoint, or if the touchscreen ends up being the only pointing device. In marketing videos from both Intel and Microsoft, we've seen people using the touchscreen to point, and the slide-out keyboard for typing, so we guess that's the case with the Slider S20, too. The Slider S20 will have a full range of connectivity found with conventional (clamshell) Ultrabooks, including USB 3.0 ports, WLAN b/g/n, and possibly 3G/4G. It is driven by Microsoft Windows 8 operating system, and a dualcore Intel "Ivy Bridge" Core low-voltage processor. MSI will display the Slider S20 at its Computex booth. It also raises hope that the company has a full-fledged Ultrabook lineup, in the works.

The previously exobitant (Apple-only) cable prices are expected to fall with the introduction of more vendors (including mainstream names like Belkin and WD) and optical cables will allow running lengths up to 20 metres.

Intel Thunderbolt Briefing at Computex - New motherboards and devices! Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/intel-thunderbolt-briefing-atcomputex--new-motherboards-and-devices-/16142.html June 5th, 2012

There were a plethora of interesting devices on show during the Intel Thunderbolt media event just now, which was held at the Taipei's premier shopping mall Bellavita. We spotted some never seen before and upcoming ASRock/Gigabyte motherboards with new Cactus Ridge 4C controller, MSI's external PCIe graphics that was shown during CES and debuting products from the likes of OCZ and LaCie. Jason Ziller, Intel's Director of Thunderbolt Marketing gave an update on the Thunderbolt ecosystem, introducing the many new PC vendors who have come onboard and their products since the Apple exclusive on Thunderbolt expired not long ago. Interestingly, he stressed repeatedly during 30

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Published by: VR-Zone

Motherboards These are a current list of motherboard vendors that Intel are working with implementing Thunderbolt support on consumer off the shelf motherboards. You've already seen the ASUS P8Z77-V Premium, Intel DZ77RE-75k and MSI Z77A-GD80 before, but they are single connector designs (Cactus Ridge 2C).

GIGABYTE GA-Z77X-UP4 TH

The more expensive but forward looking Cactus Ridge 4C host router - which allows for two Thunderbolt ports (uses 4 PCIe lanes from the PCH).

ASRock Z77 Extreme 6/TB R1.0 (4C)

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GIGABYTE GA-Z77X-UP5 TH

Thunderbolt Devices MSI GUS, a Thunderbolt PCIe Graphics Breakout Box first seen at CES 2012, with enough bandwidth (PCIe x2 or x4 depending on the host controller used) to run Crysis Warhead (had a lot of input lag though).

An ASUS ROG G55VW (Ivy Bridge i7, GTX660M) with a single Thunderbolt port

Only a single slot graphics card is supported, and an external power adapter is needed to keep things running.

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OCZ's Little Foot portable storage device (mSATA SSD)

We've seen the LaCie's Little Big Disk before during our Thunderbolt motherboard review... now theres a new version that includes dual eSATA ports.

Published by: VR-Zone

And oh...

Intel Haswell-EP Brings DDR4, to Eat up to 160W, 190 Amps Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/intel-haswell-ep-brings-ddr4-to-eatup-to-160w-190-amps/16141.html June 5th, 2012

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Our HPC expert Nebojsa "Nova" Novakovic just posted details about Intel's 2013 and 2014 platforms. We dug a bit deeper and discovered what exact details are coming to limelight in 2014. Given the increasing competition in the Big Data space between a CPU and a GPU, we were not surprised to hear that Intel decided to shift away from the traditional model which meant 65W, 95W and 130W. Upon landing in Taipei, while yours truly did check in at The Westin Taipei around 10PM, the night wasn't close to ending as I was invited for a midnight tour in one of numerous R&D offices. For those that follow me on Foursquare, no - I did not check in. :) As Nova elaborated in his exhaustive and insightful article with Ivy Bridge-EP in 2013, Intel will bring out higher TDPdraw processors, and that trend is set to continue with up to 16-core Haswell-EP monster which targets the introduction in the second half of 2014. The main competitor for HaswellEP will not be AMD with their unannounced successor of the yet unannounced Abu Dhabi Server CPU (confused yet?), it will be a combination of NVIDIA Maxwell GPU paired with an Project Denver-based Server CPU. The processor will be available at different clock speeds and with the different amount of enabled CPU cores, but the main power characteristics are 120W, 135W, 145W and 160W. There will not be any sub-100W TDP parts, as the company was told that it has to compete against NVIDIA Tesla GPUs, which all come in 225 and 300W range. With Tesla K10 (Dual-GK104, server version of GTX 690 with ECC and 8GB of GDDR5 memory) coming at 375W, and GK110based K20 drawing 300W with 12GB of GDDR5 memory, it is obvious what Haswell-EP has to do. Power draw characteristics require dedicated four and five rail solutions to feed the CPU. We were shown a prototype of the platform which draws less than 100 Amps in typical working conditions, with Turbo Mode jacking that up to 120 Amps. What will make overclockers wet is the fact that Haswell silicon is designed to accept draws of up to 190 Amps on AIR, meaning we might get another overclocking king if its able to sustain 190A when you freeze it and increase the voltage to let's say, 1.575V i.e. 300W. As far as the platform goes, The 2013/14 server and workstation platform is called Grantley. It will support DDR3 or DDR4, with extensive memory options. We were a bit intrigued by the amount of DIMMs/SO-DIMMs which Intel supports with the single 72-bit (64+8) lane (times four and six), bringing this author back into 1999 and the 8channel RDRAM DEC Alpha‌ funny to see history repeating itself with the amount of supported DIMMs per channel. However, don't expect to see any of this before the IDF Fall 2013 (behind the closed doors) or CeBIT 2014 for public appearance. If the schedule slips, see you on Computex Taipei 2014.

Pre-Computex - Ultrabooks in the second generation, a mixed lot

Published by: VR-Zone June 5th, 2012

A year ago, at this same Computex, Ultrabooks were formally introduced to the world - and started shipping few months later. It's a year now, what tidings will the second generation bring? A year after Sean Maloney's coveted talk introducing them he's now the top boss of Intel Greater China, a sure-growth market for the near future - Ultrabooks are seen everywhere. Yes, MacBook Air brought out the concept first, but Intel made it popular - the multi-million funding effort covering marketing, component design, integration and such didn't go without use, either. Besides the obvious CPU upgrade to Ivy Bridge, which should save power and improve graphics - and yes, 8 GB RAM should be standard now - there will be other interesting new features expected from the models shown at the Computex. Better display resolution, to at least come closer to the tablets, is the first thing on the menu. The Asus Zenbook Prime UX series, with its Full HD 1920x1080 IPS - but still the unproductive 16:9 aspect ratio unfortunately - screen is a good example. Thankfully they also have improved keyboards (12% increase in key travel) over the previous generation too, which were borderline unusable. Either way, the age of useless 1366x768 resolution, similar to late last century PCs some 20 years ago, should be finally over, or at least on the premium offerings. Fancy formats: How about convertible notebook/tablet hybrids? Dual-screen ones, as funny as it sounds? Various user preferences will be targeted by new form factors, with the touchscreen convertible being the most interesting one to watch. Again, such machine would have to have a different screen and aspect ratio though, likely a 16:10 beyond HD say 2560x1600 - to really outclass the best . Wider casing choices, as the plastics comes into the foray combined with lightweight, but expensive, metal enclosures. Sturdy but cheap plastic is now able to handle the Ultrabook design criteria. Finally, plethora of new interfaces, including the low latency direct PCIe external protrusion called Thunderbolt, and of course more of USB3, HDMI, DisplayPort and the mandatory Gigabit Ethernet. The vendors will, hopefully, not forget that it's not just the innards, but also outside componentry that makes a high end laptop. So, the screen quality, keyboard usability and trackpad reliability are just as important. We'll tell you more on the actual models during the show.

Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/pre-computex--ultrabooks-in-thesecond-generation-a-mixed-lot/16140.html

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PC Show 2012 Lucky Draw Details - S$10,000 Cash and Product Prizes! Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/pc-show-2012-lucky-draw-details-s-10-000-cash-and-product-prizes-/16139.html June 5th, 2012

We have gotten confirmation about the lucky draw bounty at the upcoming PC Show 2012 held at Suntec this weekend. Every $50 spent at the show entitles the purchaser to a lucky draw coupon for a chance to win S$10,000 cash and various product prizes including a Samsung Galaxy S III! · DIVOOM DIVO Premium Speaker by Mojito Ventures Pte Ltd · CRESYN C300 Lifestyle Headphone by Mojito Ventures Pte Ltd · WOCOL/PISEN 6000mAh Battery Pack by Mojito Ventures Pte Ltd · STUFF SINGAPORE EDITION Subscription 1 year by Big Fish Publishing Pte Ltd · AVIRA Premium Security Suite (12 months - 3 users) by Aurica Pte Ltd · CRESYN BJOUX Swarovski Crystal Earphone by Mojito Ventures Pte Ltd · WOCOL/PISEN 3000mAh Battery Pack by Mojito Ventures Pte Ltd · STUFF SINGAPORE EDITION Subscription 6 months by Big Fish Publishing Pte Ltd

Did you really think Google was the only company working on a “Glass” project? Microsoft is currently working on an Xbox Smart Glass tablet, and is supposed to show some of its features off at the next E3. A “Microsoft Confidential” preview of the Smart Glass tablet is going to reveal the following details about the tablet: Microsoft may be in the process of building an application that takes care all of your enterntainment needs. The future of the Xbox may not be just a game console, but a multimedia hub. The Smart Glass app/tablet are possibily just pieces in Microsoft's grand scheme to take over home entertainment. Will the Smart Glass tablet be a “normal” tablet killer, or is it just a cheesy marketing name to get people interested? Hopefully we’ll know soon.

Intel making an effort to boost Ultrabook's popularity Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/intel-making-an-effort-to-boostultrabook-s-popularity/16138.html June 5th, 2012

· DIVOOM IRIS 02 2.0 USB Speaker by Mojito Ventures Pte Ltd · SINCERELY YOURS Personalized Mobile Covers by NPE Prints Communications Pte Ltd

Microsoft's Smart Glass tablet pre-E3 rumors Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/microsoft-s-smart-glass-tablet-pree3-rumors/16114.html June 5th, 2012

Tablets are digging into sales of laptops, and Intel doesn’t want the laptop breed to die totally. The growing popularity of the iPad is just one of the problem laptop manufacturers have to deal with. Intuitive touchscreens, slim, ultraportable, and just plain fun to play with are just some of the aspects that make tablets more desirable than a laptop. Intel started a $300 million fund last year to help small companies develop ultrabooks, which Intel hope would lead to an ultrabook revolution that might help make ultraportable laptops as popular as iPads/tablets.

Did you really think Google was the only company working on a “Glass” project? Microsoft is currently working on an Xbox Smart Glass tablet, and is supposed to show some of its features off at the next E3.

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Tablets are digging into sales of laptops, and Intel doesn’t want the laptop breed to die totally. The growing popularity of the iPad is just one of the problem laptop manufacturers have to deal with. Intuitive touchscreens, slim, ultraportable, and just plain fun to play with are just some of the aspects that make tablets more desirable than a laptop. Intel started a $300 million fund last year to help small companies develop ultrabooks, which Intel hope would lead to an ultrabook revolution that might help make ultraportable laptops as popular as iPads/tablets.

The problem with trying to ultrabooks competitive with tablets is not so much its function, but rather its price. Current quality ultrabook such as the Asus Zenbook UX31 costs about $1,000, and an iPad retail price starts at $499. Intel claims that if manufacturers adopt “aerospace” engineering method, that, it will cut down the production costs of ultrabooks. Through various components rearrangement within the ultrabook’s casing, Intel asserts that it will make ultrabooks with plastic casing be just as durable as the ones with metal casings. "We didn't develop a new material. We are able to use an existing plastic with an existing manufacturing technology. It just requires some more upfront thought initially about how to lay your system out and how you can bring these things together and tie them in," Intel’s Chief Executive Paul Otellini told Reuters.

Published by: VR-Zone

Why is a chip maker (no, the chips you’re eating right now) putting so much effort into helping manufacturers with their engineering development? It would seem like Intel doesn’t want to lower the prices of their chip to make ultrabooks cheaper. Current Intel CPUs are priced around $200—one of the costliest component in a PC, if not the most. Advanced Micro Devices’ (AMD) Trinity CPU is a cheaper option to Intel’s CPU, and that’s another front that Intel has to battle. Even with the competitor’s price lower, Intel seems adamant about not lowering the price of their “premium” CPUs. At the upcoming Computex event in Taipei, Taiwan, PC manufacturers that have been working with Intel will reveal some ultrabooks that have less flex-plastic casings, faster boot time, and touchscreens. Intel’s effort to boost ultrabook’s popularity through price reduction may or may not end up in vain, but heck, I would rather buy a sturdy ultrabook with a built in keyboard and touchscreen any day —for $499, that is. We can all dream, right?

Ice Cream Sandwich still not powering enough Android devices Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/ice-cream-sandwich-still-notpowering-enough-android-devices/16136.html June 5th, 2012

Even with all the hype around Android Ice Cream Sandwich (ICS) launch a few months ago, the sweet Android platform have yet to narrow the gap between itself and Gingerbread (GB). Gingerbread currently powers about 65% of all Android devices, whereas, ICS is powering only about 7%.

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Even with all the hype around Android Ice Cream Sandwich (ICS) launch a few months ago, the sweet Android platform have yet to narrow the gap between itself and Gingerbread (GB). Gingerbread currently powers about 65% of all Android devices, whereas, ICS is powering only about 7%.

Published by: VR-Zone

the new iPhone may be the first iOS device to have AirDrop capability. “The Broadcom BCM4334 single-chip dualband combo chip provides a complete wireless connectivity system with ultra-low power consumption for mass market smartphone devices. Using advanced design techniques and 40nm process technology to reduce active and idle power, the BCM4334 is designed to address the needs of highly mobile devices that require minimal power consumption and compact size while delivering dual-band Wi-Fi connectivity.” -broadcom.com AirDrop is Apple’s file sharing protocol that doesn’t need of a Wi-Fi network, configuration, and/or USB storage device. For those that have used AirDrop on your OSX Lion PCs, then chances are you find the interface very easy to use. If Apple enables this option in the next iPhone, then there may be no need to ever plug your iPhone into your computer for mp3’s or other files again.

A variety of factors influence how GB and ICS are distributed among Android devices. However, one of the main factors, if not the relevant, is manufacturers just don’t want to put the work into releasing ICS to their customers. It may take manufacturers some effort and resources to spread the ICS goodness, and consumers are always grateful when there’s a free upgrade. It’s just too bad most of the world’s Android users have yet to taste ICS.

AirDrop on iPhone 5? Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/airdrop-on-iphone-5-/16135.html June 5th, 2012

The Broadcom BCM4330 is currently the chip of choice for connectivity on the iPhone 4S, but the upcoming iPhone 5 will have the BCM4334—dual band Wi-Fi card (2.4/5 GHz). It’s interesting to note that many Apple devices with dual band Wi-Fi cards are AirDrop capable. If that’s the case then the new iPhone may be the first iOS device to have AirDrop capability.

The Broadcom BCM4330 is currently the chip of choice for connectivity on the iPhone 4S, but the upcoming iPhone 5 will have the BCM4334—dual band Wi-Fi card (2.4/5 GHz). It’s interesting to note that many Apple devices with dual band Wi-Fi cards are AirDrop capable. If that’s the case then

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VR-Zone.com | Tech News for the Geeks! VR-Zone | Stuff for the Geeks is a bi-weekly publication covering the latest gadgets and stuff for the geeks.

Shigeru Miyamoto talks Zelda for Wii U at E3

were some people who weren’t able to do that or didn’t like it as much and stopped playing partway through it,” Miyamoto said. “So we’re in the phase where we’re looking back at what’s worked very well and what has been missing and how can we evolve it further.”

Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/shigeru-miyamoto-talks-zelda-forwii-u-at-e3/16199.html June 7th, 2012

He said that the original footage of Zelda on the Wii U was an experiment to “showcase some of the HD visuals,” but Nintendo has been watching a shift in gaming tastes, with some prefering casual experiences and others prefering more in-depth experiences, the latter of which the company has traditionally focused on.

Popular game designer Shigeru Miyamoto has revealed that Nintendo is hard at work trying to figure out a way to bring The Legend of Zelda to the Wii U next-generation console in a way that players will enjoy.

He added that Nintendo is looking at the most important element of Zelda and trying to make a game that lots of people can play. Given the mention of casual experiences, this could mean a game that moves away from traditional Zelda gameplay, which could upset the core Nintendo fanbase. The company may try to make a game that suits both types of players or may even release two titles.

Popular game designer Shigeru Miyamoto has revealed that Nintendo is hard at work trying to figure out a way to bring The Legend of Zelda to the Wii U next-generation console in a way that players will enjoy. The original Wii U reveal last year showcased Zelda in highdefinition fighting a spider, with the new gamepad used to access the inventory. Since then, however, we have seen and heard nothing about it, with no sightings of Link on the E3 floor. In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, however, Shigeru Miyamoto, the man behind Zelda, Mario, Donkey Kong and other Nintendo classics, revealed the reasons why the studio is taking its time on a Zelda Wii U title.

Regardless, Miyamoto said that only when Nintendo has found the right game from its multiple experiments will it be happy to announce it, suggesting we won't see a Zelda game for the Wii U's launch and unlikely any time within the six to twelve months immediately after. Miyamoto also explained that the reason why Pikmin 3 was created for the Wii U and not the Wii is the high-definition graphics, which allow players to zoom out and still see their Pikmin hard at work, something that he considered very important.

“With the last game, Skyward Sword, that was a game where you had motion control to use your weapons and a lot of different items, and I thought that was a lot of fun, but there 1

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Mid Computex blues: Apple still to have the Ultimate UltraBook? Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/mid-computex-blues-apple-still-tohave-the-ultimate-ultrabook-/16198.html June 7th, 2012

Midway through the Computex, and dozens of ultrathins including AMD and ARM based ones, some thoughts come to our minds... On the first day of Computex, Intel's Kirk Skaugen showed that the PC Client division somehow passes him way better than the gruesome powerful servers he was handling until recently. And, yes, all the UltraBook goodies, now in the Ivy Bridge generation, were the stars of the show. Me being an idealist, I dearly hoped that at least some vendors will use the new CPUs improved graphics speed and resolution handling, therefore coming out with some models that have proper screens at least matching what modern $500 high end tablets have - 1920x1200 16:10 aspect screen is not much to ask for? If Asus Transformer and Huawei MediaPad have it, why can't any vendor's UltraBook?

Well, to my disappointment, so many new models didn't improve on this at all! 1366x768 and 1600x900 shared the podium, both still in the unproductive irritating 16:9 movie watching aspect ratio (hey, tablets are for movie watching, notebooks are for work first!). OK yes, Asus and a few had 1920x1080 Full HD screens, but that's a few among the many... what to do.

One thing jarred my eyes, literally - Toshiba came out with a 'concept model' having, guess what, 21:9 screen. While the unlucky cross-eyed among us may actually like such a wiiiiiide screen, any attempt to actually do anything on a stretched out 1792x768 screen aside from, of course, watching a wiiiiiiide movie, would be useless. Try typing a document in MS Word or alike? After the menus and bars are blown up to be actually visible, you can see maybe 3 lines of text at a time, having to incessantly scroll till either your fingers or your pointing device give way. Remember, the story about 'must 16:9' was to save those few bucks on the panels so that the vendors cut glass cheaper, at the expense of our productivity. Now, isn't 21:9 a more expensive custom format that doesn't fit this 'price-sensitive' mentally myopic attitude so common in Taiwan and Korea IT industry, especially the LCD gang? Why not do the 16:10 then? Well, as the recent rumours show, Apple is gonna do exactly that for their upcoming MacBook Pro ultrathin refresh. Now, we'll have 15-inch 2560x1600 retina resolution 16:10 screen driven by the highest-speed Ivy Bridge ULV part, 16 GB DDR3-1600 RAM and so on... just add touchscreen and convertibilty, and you got the best of everything - super graphics, productivity, speed, and of course the looks. As much as I personally dislike the company, this is the first Apple product I may actually want to buy... hey 'PC vendors', wake up!!! The Ultimate UltraBook will still be from Apple, and it's all your own fault!

Apple Looking to Open Stores in Shenzhen and Chengdu Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/apple-looking-to-open-stores-inshenzhen-and-chengdu/16197.html June 7th, 2012

Apple is looking to open new stores in Shenzhen and Chengdu, despite a legal dispute with a Shenzhen-based company over the iPad trademark. 2

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In the midst of a battle with Proview Technology over the iPad trademark, Apple is looking to open two new flagship stores, according to government officials yesterday, in the cities of Chengdu and Shenzhen. Opening the stores would boost Apple’s business in China tremendously, as they currently only have five mainland stores open, three in Shanghai and two in Beijing. China is rapidly growing in importance to Apple. In April, Apple reported that its quarterly profit had almost doubled after a large jump in iPhone sales; most of that increase had come from mainland China. But more legal action could result if Apple tries to sell its iPads in Shenzhen. Robert Xie, a lawyer for Proview Technology, which is based in Shenzhen, said that Proview would seek an injunction against Apple if they tried to sell their tablets in Shenzhen. Currently, Apple and Proview are locked in a legal dispute in the Higher People’s Court in Guangzhou over the right to use the iPad trademark, which Proview claims it owns. Both sides are reportedly in the midst of court-mediated negotiations.

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pixels into the same space as a current iPhone screen, leading to double the resolution of the highly-praised Retina display. This creates a display far sharper than any display currently on the market. At 1280x800 pixels, the makers of this new milestone have managed to pack some very tiny liquid crystals into the display to produce such a resolution on a 2.3inch screen. The company reportedly used polysilicon TFTs as the driver elements while making the screens, which had to be manufactured in a low-temperature environment. In addition to smoothing out jagged edges, as would be expected from a higher-resolution display, JDI representatives said that text characters are sharper and images cause viewers to experience sensations similar to those that would be experienced when looking at objects in the real world.

Apple’s flagship stores are usually the center of attention for tech-savvy consumers, with people constantly coming in to tinker with the latest products, especially during product launches, when huge crowds of Apple fans and tech enthusiasts gather at the stores like pilgrims traveling to a religious site. But Apple also faces the problems of unauthorized resellers, who take smuggled imports of their products to less wealthy cities for resale, and piracy, a problem so all-pervading in China that entire counterfeit Apple stores have been set up, with employees who thought they were truly working for Apple. Apple submitted documents on Monday to the government in Shenzhen to open a store in Holiday Plaza, an upscale mall in the Nanshan district. “Apple is in the final stage and only needs to submit an environmental permit in order to gain approval,” an official with the Market Supervision Administration said. Apple received approval in late May to set up a business unit to handle retail sales and aftersales service in Chengdu, located in southwestern China, according to an official with the Chengdu Industry and Commerce Administration bureau. Despite offering no official comment, Apple’s website shows that they are hiring Apple Store staff in Shenzhen and Chengdu.

Japan Display Inc Unveils Revolutionary New Display Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/japan-display-inc-unveilsrevolutionary-new-display/16196.html June 7th, 2012

Japan Display Inc. has unvelied a display that reportedly blows other high-definition displays, including Apple's Retina display, out of the water. A new breakthrough has occurred in small form-factor screens with a new direct-view display created by Japan Display Inc. The screen manages to pack twice as many

Some argue that the Retina display on the iPhone 4 and 4S reached the peak of what is discernible with the human eye. In response, JDI conducted tests with an undisclosed group of subjects; they determined that viewers were able to see the difference, with subjects reporting that images were clearer or sharper than other high-resolution displays. JDI said that, after these studies, this new technology should mark a new LCD display milestone, adding that the image produced is comparable to film-based photography equipment. Some analysts are hailing the new screen as the death knell for the personal computer, although it’s only a matter of time before manufacturers incorporate these displays into not only mobile phones and tablets, but also laptops and desktop monitors. JDI said they would provide more information, along with a demonstration of the new technology, at the 2012 SID International Symposium, Seminar, and Exhibition.

6.5 million LinkedIn passwords uploaded to hacker website - LinkedIn confirms breech Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/6.5-million-linkedin-passwordsuploaded-to-hacker-website--linkedin-confirms-breech/16189.html

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A list was uploaded to a Russian hacker website, alleging to contain the passwords of 6.5 million LinkedIn user accounts. LinkedIn later confirmed that some of the passwords were legitimate, though it said nothing about how they were obtained. A list was uploaded to a Russian hacker website, alleging to contain the passwords of nearly 6.5 million LinkedIn user accounts. LinkedIn later confirmed that some of the passwords were legitimate, though it said nothing about how they were obtained. Earlier today, the social networking website reported that it had found no evidence of a breech in its website, despite reports from users that their passwords were located on the list, which has since been pulled off of the website it was originally uploaded to.

Later, however, LinkedIn confirmed in a blog post that user accounts had indeed been compromised.

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security of our members very seriously. If you haven't read it already, it is worth checking out my earlier blog post today about updating your password other account security best practices."

IDC predicts Android will peak in 2012 - Windows Phone will pass iOS by 2016 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/idc-predicts-android-will-peakin-2012--windows-phone-will-pass-ios-by-2016/16188.html June 7th, 2012

Market research and analysis firm IDC (International Data Research) predicts that Android will peak this year, and that Windows Phone will surpass iOS by 2016. It also forecasts that a market will remain for Blackberry devices, despite their current gloomy status. Market research and analysis firm IDC (International Data Research) predicts that Android will peak this year, and that Windows Phone will surpass iOS by 2016. It also forecasts that a market will remain for Blackberry devices, despite their current gloomy status.

"We can confirm that some of the passwords that were compromised correspond to LinkedIn accounts." said the post. It went on to explain that passwords to compromised accounts had been disabled, and that emails had been sent to compromised users providing instructions to reset their passwords. Since phishing attacks often utilize fake emails with links to fake websites, LinkedIn said it will not include links in the emails. Paul Kocher, president and chief scientist of Cryptography Research, believes that LinkedIn was more vulnerable to attack due to the way they hashed user passwords. According to Kocher, "They did not hash the passwords in a way that somebody would need to repeat their search for each account and they did not segregate and manage the (user) data in a way that they would not get compromised. The only thing worse they could have done would be to put straight passwords in a file, but they came pretty close to that by failing to salt." “Salting” is a procedure of using hashes unique to individual passwords, instead of using the same hash for every duplicate password. Just because a user's password appeared on the list does not mean that their accounts were logged into by the hackers. But according to Kocher, it is likely that the hackers have access to the corresponding usernames as well. LinkedIn director Vicente Silveira wrote, "It is worth noting that the affected members who update their passwords and members whose passwords have not been compromised benefit from the enhanced security we just recently put in place, which includes hashing and salting of our current password databases."

In a June 6 report, IDC forecasts that Android OS will continue to be the top-shipping smartphone OS through the year 2016, but that 2012 will be its peak. It also predicts that the future of smartphones rests on the backs of three major smartphone platforms: Android OS, iOS, and Windows Phone. This shouldn't come as a surprise to those who know very much about the state of smartphones, as these three are the big options right now. IDC also predicts that, if Nokia’s strength in emerging markets continues, then Windows Phone's market share will actually surpass that of iOS by 2016. "Underpinning the smartphone market is the constantly shifting OS landscape," said IDC senior research analyst, Ramon Llamas. "What remains to be seen is how these different operating systems—as well as others—will define and shape the user experience beyond what we see today in order to attract new customers and encourage replacements." IDC also had some comments to make about Research in Motion's Blackberry. The analysis firm believes that Blackberry will occupy six percent of the market share in 2012, actually putting it in fifth place behind "all others."

Silveira went on to say, "We sincerely apologize for the inconvenience this has caused our members. We take the 4

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"There will continue to be a market for BlackBerry OSpowered devices, despite Research In Motion's current woes," said IDC's report. Since Symbian is currently on the decline - because Nokia has switched its focus to Windows Phone- the market share for other smartphone platforms will drop three percent, IDC predicts, leaving Blackberry in fourth place. A lot of critics have been very pessimistic about Blackberry's future. Perhaps there remains hope for Blackberry as a smaller option, but an option nonetheless. By the end of 2016, IDC anticipates mobile phone shipments will rise from 1.8 billion to 2.3 billion units.

Nintendo unveils 3DS lineup at E3 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/nintendo-unveils-3ds-lineup-ate3/16194.html June 7th, 2012

While the focus of E3 for Nintendo was on its upcoming nextgeneration console, the Wii U, the company also has a slew of new games for the 3DS on the way. While the focus of E3 for Nintendo was on its upcoming nextgeneration console, the Wii U, the company also has a slew of new games for the 3DS on the way. Mario is back in New Super Mario Bros. 2, which continues the side-scrolling platform adventure with an even stronger focus on collecting coins than ever before. Players can also transform into Gold Mario and Raccoon Mario for some added gameplay variety, while the new Coin Rush mode offers some competitive multiplayer fun. The game will also feature a cooperative two-player mode over wireless connection. It will launch on 19 August.

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Kingdom Hearts 3D will launch on 31 July to celebrate the franchise’s 10th anniversary, enhancing the action role-playing gameplay with StreetPass features, AR Card compatibility and support for the Circle Pad Pro accessory. The creative among us may enjoy Scribblenauts Unlimited, which follows the game's hero Maxwell as he explores an unbound world and solves puzzles, all with the help of almost any object the player can think of creating.

Disney fans will be treated to some platform adventure with Disney Epic Mickey: Power of Illusion, which brings the Disney world to life with the 3D capability of the handheld console. Inspired by Castle of Illusion, Micky Mouse will be able to use paint and paint thinner in new ways to affect the game world. Other titles, including Transformers Prime, Rabbids Rumble, LEGO Batman 2: DC Super Heroes, and Heroes of Ruin will also launch on the 3DS this year.

Let these girls introduce ADATA products to you! Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/let-these-girls-introduce-adataproducts-to-you-/16193.html June 7th, 2012

For those who prefer their Mario a little more flat, there is Paper Mario: Sticker Star, which takes advantage of this series' ability to switch between 2D and 3D modes, with the added element of sticker collecting, which empower Mario with new abilities.

Luigi is not getting ignored either, with Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon providing some spook-filled adventure as Luigi explores several haunted mansions, stunning ghosts with his flashlight and solving puzzles.

Castlevania: Lord of Shadow – Mirror of Fate brings some action gaming to the 3DS, combining 3D graphics with traditional 2D gameplay. Alucard, the son of Dracula, returns for this title. 5

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Theres more on the next page...

Sony's PlayStation is not the cheapest, or on the market the quickest, but its the best Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/sony-s-playstation-is-not-thecheapest-or-on-the-market-the-quickest-but-its-the-best/16192.html June 7th, 2012

It’s not the first, it’s not the cheapest, but it has to be the best is Sony’s new slogan for their upcoming gaming console (PlayStation 4). Jack Trenton, CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment America emphasizes the price of the Sony’s gaming console entails more quality than quantity. It’s not the first, it’s not the cheapest, but it has to be the best is Sony’s new slogan for their upcoming gaming console (PlayStation 4). Jack Trenton, CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment America emphasizes the price of the Sony’s gaming console entails more quality than quantity. "We've never been first. We've never been cheapest. It's about being the best. If you can build a better machine, and it's going to come out a little bit later, that's better than rushing something to market that's going to run out of gas for the long term,” says Trenton at 2012’s E3 press conference.

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The PlayStation 3 had a rough beginning, and wasn’t able to pull in profit until two years ago. Microsoft’s Xbox and Nintendo’s Wii chipped away at Sony’s flagship console, but even so, Trenton insists that a quality product will always obtain more customer loyalty in the end. "Ideally, in a perfect world, you want the best machine that ships first, that's cheapest. But the number one goal is to be the best machine, and that's what we're always focused on," he proclaimed. Sony’s new console is rumored to be code named “PlayStation Orbis,” and is expected to be released sometime in 2013. Some gossips have also gone as far as to speculate that developers are already in the process of making video games for Sony’s new console.

Subzero Overclocking, Memories, SSDs and Babes @ G.Skill's Computex Booth

LN2 Pots by Kingpincooling.com

Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/subzero-overclocking-memoriesssds-and-babes--g.skill-s-computex-booth/16191.html June 7th, 2012

This year, G.Skill showed off their record breaking TridentX DDR3 modules and Sandforce SF-2281 based Phoenix III SSDs alongside an LN2 overclocking demostration graced by representatives from the top motherboard makers. We took a look at some of the exhibits... Swedish overclocker Elmor representing MSI on Tuesday

Schedule of events and showtime Japan's Fredyama and VR-Zone legend Shamino (good mood) for ASUS on Wednesday

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G.Skill finally refreshed their Phoenix line of SSDs with a SATA III model (SF-2281 based). Capacities of 120GB and 240GB will hit retail end of this month (June).

G.Skill's record breaking TridentX memory modules (our review), capable of achieving frequencies beyond 3000+MHz in the hands of knowledgable enthusiasts and good CPU memory controller.

MSI's GX60 Gaming Laptop comes equipped with Radeon HD 7970M... and Trinity A10-4600M APU Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/msi-s-gx60-gaming-laptopcomes-equipped-with-radeon-hd-7970m...-and-trinity-a10-4600mapu/16190.html June 7th, 2012

Our ever vigilant counterparts at Chinese VR-Zone spotted a rather interesting gaming laptop SKU from MSI filled with AMD hardware - the GX60 is powered by a top of the line Radeon HD 7970M and a Trinity A10-4600M APU. Is it a marriage made in heaven? Here at the Computex show halls, extinct dinosaurs and hidden nuggets often lurk behind the maze of products on display. It takes a good eye and sometimes coercion to seek them out.

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No word on the pricing or availability yet but we expect them to cost a bit less than the other Intel models in the lineup to be an attractive proposition.

Qualcomm's WTR1605L multi-band 4G LTE chip Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/qualcomm-s-wtr1605l--multiband-4g-lte-chip/16097.html June 7th, 2012

MSI's GX60, the latest AMD Trinity SKU in its comprehensive line of gaming laptops, retains the same bulky 15.6 inch form factor, Steelseries keyboard and Dynaudio speakers as its illustrious predecessors (our review of the GT780R).

The processor is a quad-core AMD Trinity A10-4600M (lets get this clear - two Piledriver modules, four integer cores) and discreet graphics by the recently launched 28nm Radeon 7970M GDDR5 (again don't be fooled by the marketing - its closer to the desktop 7870 but with slower clocks). Presumably there is some kind of power saving graphics switching voodoo here as the integrated 7660G can only pair with equivalent VLIW-4 GPUs for hybrid CrossfireX (7970M is GCN).

Qualcomm announced today that they will be releasing a multi-band LTE chip that can potentially change the demographics of current smartphones. The new Qualcomm LTE (WTR1605L) chip will support seven frequencies— three frequencies below 1.0 GHz, three above, and one at 2.5 GHz+.

Qualcomm announced today that they will be releasing a multi-band LTE chip that can potentially change the demographics of current smartphones. The new Qualcomm LTE (WTR1605L) chip will support seven frequencies— three frequencies below 1.0 GHz, three above, and one at 2.5 GHz+.

For storage, we get a speedy 2 x 64GB Sandisk U100 SSD in RAID-0 for the system drive and a WD 500GB mechanical drive for secondary usages. MSI also put in a fancy Qualcomm Atheros Killer NIC chip for reduced networking latency during gaming sessions.

Current smartphone landscapes involve many carriers with many different types of 4G. AT&T and Verizon both have 4G LTE, but each carrier operates it on different frequencies. The WTR1605L will help consolidate those differences in LTE frequencies, and help manufacturers focus on a single piece of tech instead of splitting up their processes into different carrier requirements. In addition to multiband capability, the WTR1605L will be manufactured on a 28nm process to reduce power consumption--how can manufacturers resist such a darn good piece of tech?

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The prospect of a single smartphone being able to operate on multiple carriers’ data frequency brings about a whole new meaning for “world phone.” Many current world phones can operate as a text and talk phone, but often times when it comes to a carrier’s data its more than a struggle—it’s downright near impossible. However, the WTR1605L is still subject to the FCC’s approval, so don’t go searching for “WTR1605L world phones” just yet. Qualcomm announced that the chip will be released next month, and will be integrated into smartphones by as early as the end of this year.

Stunning ASUS Models @ Monday's Computex Press Conference Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/stunning-asus-models--monday-scomputex-press-conference/16170.html June 7th, 2012

During the ASUS Computex press conference last Monday, the world got to see the company's cloud strategy and upcoming Transformer tablet convertibles. What about the other models at the event?

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Less feature phones and more smartphones Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/less-feature-phones-and-moresmartphones/16187.html June 7th, 2012

The mobile phone market is forecasted to slow down in the coming years. According to the International Data Corporation (IDC), the mobile phone market will grow about 4% year over year—the lowest annual growth rate since 2009. The mobile phone market is forecasted to slow down in the coming years. According to the International Data Corporation (IDC), the mobile phone market will grow about 4% year over year—the lowest annual growth rate since 2009. Analysis by the IDC reveals that the slow growth rate is due to many people holding onto their “feature phones”—non-smartphone, or “text and talk” phones. Global economic conditions are preventing people from purchasing newer phone models, and the IDC projects that there will be a 10.0% decline in feature phone shipments this year.

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Moreover, Apple’s iOS will maintain its steady hold of its current market share of about 20% for the next five years. The smartphone platform that the IDC predicts will experience the most growth is Window’s Mobile. Declining Symbian and BlackBerry OS market share will be snatched up by Windows Mobile, and in five years it will be on even playing field with Apple’s iOS.

1,000 workers riot at Foxconn's Chengdu iPhone/ iPad plant Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/1-000-workers-riot-at-foxconn-schengdu-iphoneipad-plant/16186.html June 7th, 2012

Working conditions at the Foxconn plant in Chengdu doesn’t seem to get any better. According to a report from wantchinatimes.com, a riot consisting of nearly 1,000 workers took police several hours to subdue.

Smartphone, however, will be providing some cushion for feature phone’s slow growth, as smartphone is projected to experience a 38.8% growth year over year. The growth is due to high carrier subsidies, decreased average smartphone prices, increase device varieties, and low cost data plans.

Working conditions at the Foxconn plant in Chengdu doesn’t seem to be getting any better. According to a report from wantchinatimes.com, a riot consisting of nearly 1,000 workers took police several hours to subdue. The Chengdu plant is responsible for producing a massive amount Apple’s iPhones and iPads. Despite Foxconn’s/ Apple’s effort to convince the world that they’re putting a lot of effort into improving worker conditions—it doesn’t seem like whatever they’re trying is working. The riot started when guards were trying to stop a thief, and some workers, who had held grudges against the guards, tried to prevent the guards from catching the thief. What began as a few workers trying to secure a thief’s safe passage, soon escalated into nearly 1,000 workers chucking pots, pans, garbage, and even fireworks from their dormitory windows. Google’s Android OS, as projected by the IDC, will continue to be the most shipped over the next five years. However, its growth will hit a wall this year, and it will either maintain its market share of about 60% or decrease from there.

Several workers were arrested, and some public facilities were damaged. Forget the damages; the advent of another riot at a Foxconn plant reveals that there are still a lot of

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tension between workers and authorities in the Chengdu plant—that is something that cannot be fixed easily. We don’t know what Foxconn and Apple have done exactly to improve worker’s conditions, but whatever they’re doing, it hasn't convinced workers that it’s “all about worker’s happiness.”

Star Wars 1313 wows gamers at E3 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/star-wars-1313-wows-gamers-ate3/16185.html June 7th, 2012

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In a gamplay demo at E3 we are treated to what is initially a cutscene. Then suddenly we realise we are playing the game. The graphics do not dumb down for gameplay and there are no loading screens, pauses, or giveaway signals that show that what is on screen has transitioned to actual gameplay. This is impressive to watch and the studio promises that the entire game will be like this.

Star Wars may take place a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away, but with 1313 it is about to get the gritty realism of the present-day world. A release date has not yet been revealed.

LucasArts is wowing gamers at E3 with Star Wars 1313, a gritty mature-rated take on the iconic sci-fi universe with no lightsabers, no gimmicks, and no corny dialogue - just pure first-person shooter goodness. LucasArts is wowing gamers at E3 with Star Wars 1313, a gritty mature-rated take on the iconic sci-fi universe with no lightsabers, no gimmicks, and no corny dialogue - just pure first-person shooter goodness. The first thing that is apparent is the unusual title for the game. There's no mention of Jedi, Sith, the Rebels, Empire, or galactic warfare. Even Bounty Hunters, which the game will focus on, are not mentioned, leading to an air of mystery around the game's storyline. 1313 is a reference to a level in the multi-level skyscraper planet of Coruscant, and it is on this level, deep down below the glistening cityscape that fans are familiar with from the films and other games, that the criminal underworld thrives, murdering and stealing their way through life. Immediately we see that this is a far cry from what we're used to in the child-friendly Star Wars canon.

See the Nintendo Wii U in action Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/see-the-nintendo-wii-u-inaction/16184.html June 7th, 2012

With only one of the three next-generation consoles coming out this year, Nintendo's Wii U is understandably getting a lot of attention at E3. Like the original Wii it is something that has to be experienced to fully appreciate, but gamers can get some insight from a number of demonstration videos. With only one of the three next-generation consoles coming out this year, Nintendo's Wii U is understandably getting a lot of attention at E3. Like the original Wii it is something that has to be experienced to fully appreciate, but gamers can get some insight from a number of demonstration videos. First, check out the new gamepad itself. It has all the buttons you'd expect from a controller, as well as touchscreen that can be used with your fingers or a stylus, effectively bringing the Nintendo DS experience to the Wii. It wouldn't be Wii without motion control, however, so it also features a motion sensor, gyro sensor and geomagnetic sensor, which not only means it can be used to perform in-game actions; it even knows when you turn around.

At yesterday's presentation at E3 Nintendo revealed over two dozen games that will be coming to the Wii U, including Nintendo classics like Mario and Pikmin. Check out some of the lineup below. What is even more shocking about the game is the level of detail in the artwork, which makes the entire game look as good as what other games only produce for their trailers. Star Wars: The Old Republic, for example, had some amazing CGI videos, but the in-game art was considerably more cartoony. Star Wars 1313 defies these expectations.

For a more detailed look at Pikmin 3 and New Super Mario Bros. U, see the following trailers:

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convincing; he says that the reason is because there are so many cultures involved. The real stars of the show, however, are ZombiU and Batman: Arkham City Armored Edition, both of which show off both the high-resolution graphics of the Wii U and the innovative, and what seems like just plain fun, ways of making use of the new controller. Check out the gameplay reveals, and notice the black controller, which suggests there will be two versions of the console.

Nintendo is giving hands-on demos of five of the 12 themed mini-games from Nintendo Land, the “showcase” title that will likely accompany the Wii U and give players a taste of the different styles of gameplay possible with the new controller. Chris Grant from Polygon gives a good overview of what these gaming experiences are like.

The Elder Scrolls Online E3 trailer and details revealed Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/the-elder-scrolls-online-e3-trailerand-details-revealed/16183.html June 7th, 2012

E3 has seen a lot of focus on console gaming, but the PC market is still going strong, particularly the MMO genre, which will soon see another rival in the form of The Elder Scrolls Online. E3 has seen a lot of focus on console gaming, but the PC market is still going strong, particularly the MMO genre, which will soon see another rival in the form of The Elder Scrolls Online. At the gaming conference the developer behind the game, ZeniMax, which is licensing the title from Bethesda, revealed a teaser trailer of what we can expect.

“Teaser” is pretty appropriate, as the video just gives us a glimpse of the various races. However, an exclusive SpikeTV interview with Paul Sage, Game Director, provides a first look at the in-game world and some additional gameplay details.

The first thing that is apparent is that the art style is a little more cartoony than fans of the recent Skryim title will be used to. This is not entirely surprising, as the game will be competing with World of Warcraft and many MMO developers claim that art needs to be toned down a little to prevent lag in such an expansive world with so many players involved. Sage's explanation for the change is less

In terms of gameplay, players can choose from one of three factions, which will span the key areas of the original games: Morrowind, Dagorfall, and Skyrim. The game will play fairly traditionally, allowing players considerable freedom in choosing quest lines, with some quest givers coming to the player, which is an interesting twist. The UI is also a major focus, with efforts to make it as minimal as possible, to make the combat feel more immersive. There is no footage of combat, nor any information on how that will play out, but we can likely expect it to be a cross between the Elder Scrolls games and World of Warcraft. Of course, fans of the single-player games need to bear in mind that while this is the same world, with its deep lore, it is not the same people behind it, as Bethesda is little more than a licenser and publisher for this title. How the game pairs up to the classics then is anyone's guess. The Elder Scrolls Online is due out in 2013.

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Benchmark your Android with this Hatsune Miku app [video] Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/benchmark-your-android-with-thishatsune-miku-app-video-/16182.html June 7th, 2012

Even if you don’t own an Android device, hit the jump to watch Hatsune Miku dance along to the Nyan Cat song! Even if you don’t own an Android device, hit the jump to watch Hatsune Miku dance along to the Nyan Cat song! MikuMikuBench is a free Android app that lets you benchmark your device by watching Hatsune Miku dance in sync to that infectiously addictive song (note: all three links are videos containing the Nyan Cat song, differing only in length. Please don’t click on any of them; curiosity won’t kill the Nyan Cat. No, it will only feed the cat).

Of course, nobody really expects MikuMikuBench to be reliable for benchmarking purposes. But just in case you’d like to know how well your device does compared to other Androids anyway, Japanese blog Octoba has listed the MikuMikuBench scores for quite a few of them (mostly Japan-only). - IS03 … 1946 - MOTOROLA PHOTON … 2347 - IS04 … 2361 - DesireHD … 3093 - Galaxy NEXUS … 3277 (GPU rendering ON) - Xperia arc … 3884 - ARROWS Z … 3933 - Galaxy Note … 4531

A frames-per-second count on top lets you know how well your device handles 3D rendering in real-time, and at the end of the song-and-dance you also get a benchmarking score that makes it easy to compare performance between devices. When not running the benchmark test, you can also freely spin Hatsune Miku around, zoom in and out on the 3D model through “pinch” gestures, and put her in one of a variety of still poses or animated sequences by selecting something from the scrolling menu at the bottom.

If you’re going to give MikuMikuBench a whirl, do let us know what device you have and how high it scored via comments below.

PC Show 2012 Promotions: Norton Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/pc-show-2012-promotionsnorton/16181.html June 7th, 2012

Apart from Hatsune Miku, there is also a Kagamine Rin version of this app, called RinRinBench, which is also free to download. Norton by Symantec will be at the PC Show 2012 this week, and their star products include the Norton 360 V6 and Norton 360 Everywhere. If you're looking for these security software for your PC, be sure to check them out at various booths - Newstead (Level 3, 310), Harvey Norman (Level 4 A2026 and Level 6 B2008), Cybermind (Level 4, A2047) and Gain City (Level 4 A2028). 17

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Norton 360 Everywhere

The Norton 360 Everywhere will make its debut at the PC SHOW 2012. It claims to be a comprehensive security solution that provides security across platforms and devices. Designed for users who have multiple devices and want a simple, easy-to-use security solution, the software provides protection for PCs, Macs, Android-based phones and tablets, right out of the box. Norton 360 version 6.0

NORTON ANTIVIRUS 2012 1 USER NORTON ANTIVIRUS 2012 3 USER NORTON ANTIVIRUS 2012 5 USER NORTON INTERNET SECURITY 2012 1 USER NORTON INTERNET SECURITY 2012 1 USER 3LIC NORTON INTERNET SECURITY 2012 5 USER NORTON 360 6.0 AP 1 USER NORTON 360 6.0 AP 1 USER 3LIC

S$39

S$65

S$99

S$49

S$89

FREE HP x3000 Wireless Mouse worth $29

S$149

FREE Canon iP2770 BubbleJet Printer worth $79

S$65 S$119

NORTON 360 6.0 S$169 SOP 5 USER NORTON 360 EVERYWHERE 1.0 1 USER 5LIC

FREE HP x3000 Wireless Mouse worth $29 FREE HP x3000 Wireless Mouse worth $29

S$189

FREE HP wireless Keyboard & Mouse worth $59 FREE Canon iP2770 BubbleJet Printer worth $79 Debuting at the PC SHOW 2012 Slashed down to S $159 only, limited to 50units

PC Show 2012 Promotions: Seagate Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/pc-show-2012-promotionsseagate/16180.html June 7th, 2012

The Norton 360 version 6.0 fine-tunes the PC's settings to keep it running at top speed. It also frees up memory so applications start up and run faster, and it removes unnecessary files to improve the computer's performance. The software can automatically back up and encrypt important files so that users can retrieve them in case of a hard drive crash, natural disaster or other mishaps. Norton 360 version 6 and Norton 360 Everywhere can be purchased at Newstead (Level 3, 310), Harvey Norman (Level 4 A2026 and Level 6 B2008), Cybermind (Level 4, A2047) and Gain City (Level 4 A2028). DESCRIPTION

SRP

Running out of storage on your hard drive? Well, you can check out the storage devices from various vendors at the PC Show 2012 this week, including Seagate's GoFlex Satellite and GoFlex ultra-portable drive (USB 3.0). Read on. Seagate GoFlex Satellite

PC SHOW 2012 SPECIAL

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EPI - Level 3 meeting room 301 - 302 Booth 11481

PC Show 2012 Promotions: Sennheiser Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/pc-show-2012-promotionssennheiser/16179.html June 7th, 2012

The Seagate GoFlex Satellite mobile wireless storage device allows users to carry their media library with them while on-the-go and wirelessly stream movies, photos, music and documents to their iPad, Android tablet, smartphones or any Wi-Fi enabled device via the GoFlex Media app or web browser. It featues a fast USB3.0/USB2.0 connection and downloadable Media Sync software that allows for easy transfer of media and documents from a PC or Mac computer.

Audiophiles looking for a headphone replacement or new headphones may want to check out some of the great offers from Sennheiser at the PC Show 2012. Their booth can be located at the Concourse Area on level 3, booth no. 315, by Newstead as well as Song Brothers on level 6, booth no. B2108. Sennheiser HD 239

Usual price: S$299 PC Show price: TBC Seagate GoFlex ultra-portable USB 3.0 drive

The Seagate GoFlex ultra-portable USB 3.0 drive is a sleek and lightweight hard drive that provides up to 10 times faster file transfer speeds vs. USB 2.0. It also offers huge storage capacity, up to 1.5TB. The GoFlex ultra-portable drive is ultra-upgradable. It comes with USB 3.0 connection (backward compatible with USB 2.0) and can also be upgraded to eSATA or FireWire 800 connections simply by switching the cable.

Featuring the world-famous balance and detail of DuoFol transducers mounted in an open-aire headphone chassis, the Sennheiser HD 239 headphone is all about performance. Listeners can expect great audio precision and extraordinary balance throughout the frequency spectrum of sound. The butter-soft hybrid earpads breathe easy and contribute to the long-term wearability of the headphones. Usual Price: S$159.90 PC Show price: TBA Sennheiser X 2 Gaming headset

Usual price: GoFlex ultra-portable 1TB (USB 3.0) - S$229 ; GoFlex ultra-portable 1.5TB (USB 3.0): S$249 PC Show price: TBC Newstead - Level 3 315 Booth 11640 Cybermind - Level 4 A2047 Booth 11639 Pertama - Level 6 B2008 Hall 602 Booth 11639 19

June 7th, 2012

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Liquidmetal Technologies CEO confirms the use of Liquidmetal in future Apple products Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/liquidmetal-technologies-ceoconfirms-the-use-of-liquidmetal-in-future-apple-products/16178.html June 7th, 2012

Weighing a mere 54g, the newly launched X 2 is Sennheiser’s first ever Xbox headset, designed to provide a durable and robust alternative for cost-conscious gamers who do not want to compromise on quality. It comes with a noise canceling microphone that lets you converse clearly with your team mates. Usual Price: S$39 PC Show price: TBA Sennheiser RS160 wireless headphone

The Sennheiser RS 160 is a two-part system that combines the best wireless audio quality with a truly versatile compact transmitter for listening at home, on-the-go or at the office. This wireless headphone system consists of a pair of wireless headphones (HDR 160) and a compact transmitter (TX 160) which runs on AC or battery power to best accommodate your applications. Usual Price: S$299 PC Show price: TBA The Sennheiser products can be located at the Concourse Area on level 3, booth no. 315, by Newstead as well as Song Brothers on level 6, booth no. B2108.

CEO of Liquidmetal Technologies has confirmed that Apple will be using the glass-like metallic substance called "Liquidmetal" in upcoming products. This is exciting news due to the strength, flexibility, and aesthetic appeal of the material which could be ideally be used in Apple's iOS family of devices, such as the iPhone and iPad. CEO of Liquidmetal Technologies has confirmed that Apple will be using the glass-like metallic substance called "Liquidmetal" in upcoming products. This is exciting news due to the strength, flexibility, and aesthetic appeal of the material which could be ideally be used in Apple's iOS family of devices, such as the iPhone and iPad. There was a long standing rumor that liquid metal technology would be used in the iPhone 5, which turned out to be untrue. Currently, the technology is not mature enough for that. But regardless, Liquidmetal Technologies' CEO Tom Steipp stepped forward and confirmed that Apple will indeed be using the substance in future products, without any specific examples of what those products will be.

Concept of an iPhone made of Liquidmetal - by Antoine Brieux Steipp explained that Apple took a license on Liquidmetal in August of 2012, and stated that "Apple along with us are commercializing Liquidmetal in the consumer electronic space." Liquidmetal is a material that could very well suit Apple's line of iOS devices, such as the iPad and iPhone. Twice as strong as Titanium, Liquidmetal could make the iPhone a far more durable product. At the same time, the material is very flexible, with a smooth and slick finish reminiscent of liquid (hence "Liquidmetal"). Using this material in the iPhone would give Apple an advantage over other cell phone makers- though, some would argue they already have one - because the use of Liquidmetal in the iPhone would be exclusive to Apple. The simplistic, reflective design of Apple’s products is 20

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well known. While many try to imitate this look, the metallic-glass substance would give Apple an edge that other cell phone makers couldn't beat without using the material themselves, which would be very difficult to imitate - Liquidmetal consists of a specific mixture of many substances, including zirconium, titanium, nickel, copper and more.

Lenovo reveals Windows 8 "ThinkPad" tablet Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/lenovo-reveals-windows-8-thinkpadtablet/16177.html June 7th, 2012

Lenovo revealed a new Windows 8 tablet, and demonstrated it to Engadget at Computex today. The tablet has been unofficially titled "ThinkPad", with no relation to the Android tablet of the same name. The tablet boasts a 10.1 inch screen with a 1366x768 pixel resolution and has two webcams - an 8 megapixel camera on the back, and a 2 megapixel front facing camera.

Published by: VR-Zone June 7th, 2012

Warner Bros and Turbine have announced the release date and pre-order details for Lord of the Rings Online: Riders of Rohan, which introduces mounted combat and other features to the Tolkien-inspired MMO game. Warner Bros and Turbine have announced the release date and pre-order details for Lord of the Rings Online: Riders of Rohan, which introduces mounted combat and other features to the Tolkien-inspired MMO game. Riders of Rohan, the fourth expansion for Turbine's free-toplay title, will launch on 5 September as a digital download, increasing the level cap from 75 to 85 and adding a ton of new content. The biggest feature of the game will be mounted combat, where players will employ larger War-steeds that level up and have skills and traits, adding substantial new gameplay options to the game. Players will be able to fight from atop their horse in special areas of Rohan and the horse itself will also fight, kicking and biting like any loyal steed would.

Lenovo officially confirmed the tablet to CNET, and explained that the device was cooperatively developed by Microsoft, Intel and Lenovo. The representative speaking said the tablet will offer "great battery life, responsive touch performance, and great multimedia features." While there were no official details mentioned regarding other specs like the processor, Engadget believes that the tablet uses a type of Clover Trail processor and that the battery could live for ten hours on a single charge.

You might think this gives players an unfair advantage over enemies on foot, but enemies are mounting up as well, leading to roving warbands, which will give mounted players a run for their money throughout the Plains of Rohan.

There is no marketing information regarding the tablet no name, no pricing, and no market ETA. This is because Windows 8 has not been released on the market yet. When it does, there will be a veritable slew of other tablets besides this one to choose from. Windows 8 is being designed with a "Metro" interface that will be available on both PC's and tablets.

Lord of the Rings Online: Riders of Rohan release and pre-order details announced Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/lord-of-the-rings-online-riders-ofrohan-release-and-pre-order-details-announced/16176.html

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War-steeds are inspired not only by the Horse-lords of Rohan, but by the Mearas, noble horses of extraordinary strength and intelligence, like Shadowfax, the steed Gandalf rode into battle. The customisation options for these horses will extend beyond skills, with a variety of appearances to choose from, including additional ones from the LOTRO Store.

Turbine has opened pre-orders for the game immediately, with three versions to choose from: the Base Edition, retailing for $39.99, the Heroic Edition, retailing for $49.99, and the Legendary Edition, retailing for $69.99.

Players will also get new skills for their characters and the gameplay won't all be on horesback. New armour and gear will also be available and we can likely expect additional crafting options, if not a new tier altogether. There is no word on instances and raids, but it would be hard to imagine an expansion without them. That said, Rise of Isengard launched last year with its cluster of instances delayed by several months, so it is not entirely outside the realms of possibility.

All three versions include the Steed of Eastemnet, an exclusive Rohan horse, and the Friend of the Mark exclusive in-game title. The Heroic Edition adds the Hauberk of the Mark cosmetic piece and the Evendim, Moria and Lothlorien quest packs, which is a good deal for Premium players who are missing that content. The Legendary Edition is where it's at, however, with the long-awaited sixth inventory bag (available to purchase separately from the Store for those who buy one of the other versions), Crystal of Remembrance that adds an additional legacy to a Legendary Item, and exclusive Rohan content that will grant a unique skill for War-steeds.

An expansion would not be anything without new regions to play in and Rohan is promising to be the largest region to date, nearly twice as big as Moria, the iconic and expansive location that players still sing praises about to this day. Hundreds of new quests and dozens of new deeds will be available here. And this is only Eastern Rohan. Western Rohan will be added in future updates. It would not be a Tolkien game without some good story either, so we can expect the coninuation of the Epic Story. Players will witness the breaking of the Fellowship at Amon Hen, will forge alliances with the Ents of Fangorn, and will aid Éomer, adopted son of King ThÊoden, as he tries to protect Rohan from the forces of Sauron.

Those who pre-order any version will get immediate bonuses, including a statted Rohan Elite Guard cloak, and a Rohan Soldier appearance for Soldiers on Landscape, the recently added feature that expands Skirmish Soldiers to the wider world. The Heroic and Legendary Editions also provide the Outrider's Token, which grants +25% XP for all characters up to level 75, helping get players more quickly into the action throughout Rohan.

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VR-Zone.com | Tech News for the Geeks! VR-Zone | Stuff for the Geeks is a bi-weekly publication covering the latest gadgets and stuff for the geeks.

How will Apple's false advertisement affect consumer's views?

an oxymoron since every companies want to rake in the cash, but how does Apple intend to keep its image of “quality” and “consumers come first” if—by chance—Apple gets accused of more false advertisement in the future?

Sergey Brin and Larry Page to undergo FTC antitrust probe

Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/how-will-apple-s-falseadvertisement-affect-consumer-s-views-/16225.html June 9th, 2012

Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/sergey-brin-and-larry-page-toundergo-ftc-antitrust-probe/16224.html June 9th, 2012

Despite Apple’s strict quality standard in all aspects of their products, the company has agreed to a $2.25 million settlement in Australian court because of false advertisement on their latest iPad product. The penalty incurred by Apple may be a small fee for misleading customers, but how will it influence consumer's view of Apple in the future?

The Google Empire has grown so much that the Federal Trade Commission is stepping in to try to slow it down. Next up on the FTC's agenda are, according to Bloomberg.com, probing sessions for Sergey Brin (co-founder of Google) and Larry Page (CEO of Google). The Google Empire has grown so much that the Federal Trade Commission is stepping in to try to slow it down. Next up on the FTC's agenda are, according to Bloomberg.com, probing sessions for Sergey Brin (co-founder of Google) and Larry Page (CEO of Google).

Despite Apple’s strict quality standard in all aspects of their products, the company has agreed to a $2.25 million settlement in Australian court because of false advertisement on their latest iPad product. The penalty incurred by Apple may be a small fee for misleading customers, but how will it influence consumer's view of Apple in the future? The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission claimed that the third generation iPad did not support true 4G LTE as advertised. Although Apple has agreed to settle, the presiding Australian judge has yet to give his approval on the settlement. Apple has since changed its iPad product from “iPad WiFi + 4G” to “iPad WiFi + Cellular.” Two million dollars is a small loss for the multibillion dollar company, but losing a false advertisement lawsuit makes one think that Apple cares more about making money than delivering quality product. Of course the prior statement is

(Left: Brin, Right: Page) 1

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Suspicion of Google’s unfair advertisement practice in its search engine will be the FTC’s target in the upcoming disposition. Google announced that the FTC had begun a review of their business practice on June 24th last year, and the FTC announced that it hope to finish its investigation by the end of this year. Google’s big-wigs are not riding the hope that the FTC won’t sue them, and they have opted to hire Williams & Connolly LLP as counsel for their upcoming interview. William & Connolly LLP have represented some major figures such as Bill Clinton and Edward Kennedy, so it seems like Google’s execs are getting ready for a possibility of an antitrust suit. Jill Hazelbacker, spokeswoman for Google, says that Google has no intention of not cooperating with the FTC’s investigation. “We are happy to explain our business to regulators and answer any questions they may have,” she says. The question still remains, has the FTC gathered enough evidence to file an antitrust suit against one of the wealthiest company in history?

Samsung sues patent commissioner in Australian Federal court Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/samsung-sues-patent-commissionerin-australian-federal-court/16223.html June 9th, 2012

What can a company do when it loses a patent battle to its opponent? Perhaps, the loser can give up and move on, but with Samsung losing is not an option. Instead of giving up its patent battle with Apple in Australia, Samsung is now suing the Australian patent commissioner.

What can a company do when it loses a patent battle to its opponent? The loser can just give up and move on, but with Samsung losing is not an option. Instead of giving up its patent battle in Australia with Apple, Samsung is now suing the Australian patent commissioner. According to itnews.com.au, Samsung has filed a statement of claim in Australian Federal court on May 22 to review the patent commissioner’s decision (between 2009 and 2010) to

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grant Apple patents that essentially banned the Galaxy Tab 10.1 in Australia. Samsung is seeking revision to the following patents: • 2006330724 - Unlocking a device by performing gestures on an unlock image (Granted April 1, 2010) • 2007283771 - Portable electronic device for photo management (Granted May 20, 2010) • 2008201540 - List scrolling and document translation, scaling, and rotation on a touch-screen display (Granted February 11, 2010) • 2009200366 - List scrolling and document translation, scaling, and rotation on a touch screen display (Granted July 23, 2009) In the eye of consumers, petty patent wars may mean that tech companies are money hoarding conglomerates. On the other hand, Samsung may think that their Galaxy Tab 10.1 is a wonderful piece of tech that should be in the hands of every Aussie. Suing a company for patent infringements is older than the dinosaurs, but suing the people that grant patents is relatively new.

ZTE Tania added to lineup of Windows Phone Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/zte-tania-added-to-lineup-ofwindows-phone/16222.html June 9th, 2012

Last month Microsoft claimed that Windows Phones were outselling iPhones in China, and the entrance of ZTE Tania into the WP arena may just back up that claim.

Last month Microsoft claimed that Windows Phones were outselling iPhones in China, and the entrance of ZTE into the WP arena may just back up that claim. ZTE has been all over the place with regards to its smartphone development. Two weeks ago rumors emerged 2

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that ZTE was trying to take over the crown of “world’s thinnest smartphone,” and this week there’s physical evidence that ZTE will release the Tania for China Unicom. The Tania will boast a 4.3’’ 800 x 480 display, 512 MB RAM, 1.4 GHz CPU, 4 GB of internal storage, and a 5 megapixel rear camera. Can we say Windows Phone is starting to surge? Or do we have to wait a little longer to see it’s just a momentary adrenaline rush by manufacturers?

Windows 8 provides improved multimedia performance and uses less power Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/windows-8-provides-improvedmultimedia-performance-and-uses-less-power/16221.html June 9th, 2012

The much anticipated release of Windows 8 may have a lot to do with its new user interface, and optimization for touchscreen devices, but the Windows 8 team also claim that the new OS will come with improved multimedia performance while utilizing less system resources. The much anticipated release of Windows 8 may have a lot to do with its new user interface, and optimization for touchscreen devices, but the Windows 8 team also claim that the new OS will come with improved multimedia performance while utilizing less system resources.

Another improvement that the team touched upon in Windows 8 was communication via chat clients that require sending and receiving video and audio. They claimed that Windows 8 will have an automatic switch which recognizes when the system is using its encoding/decoding hardware for communication or playback. When the PC is used for communication (i.e. Skype) the hardware will switch to low latency mode, which provides for less delay between video/ audio transmissions. “In playback mode, the average latency of the pipeline is about 575ms. This delay is necessary for a smooth playback experience when consuming video, but unacceptable for real-time video communication. In low latency mode, on the other hand, the measured latency is well under the target goal at each of the measured video resolutions,” says Steven Sinofsky, the team’s blog poster. These benchmarks may be impressive, but real world consumer experiences may differ. The Windows 8 team's claims will be put up to the test soon as Windows 8 is rumored to drop around October this year.

Analyst predicts Apple will reveal third MacBook line next week Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/analyst-predicts-apple-will-revealthird-macbook-line-next-week/16215.html June 9th, 2012

In today’s blog post on msdn.com, the Windows 8 team revealed some remarkable data of how their revamped Windows 8 multimedia platform managed to decrease CPU utilization by over 50% across various environments. For example, WMV decoding required 32% CPU utilization in Windows 7, but in Windows 8 it was cut to just 14%. The team credits some of their feat to their partnership with the “silicon chip industry,” because the significant drop in CPU utilization is due to the addition of dedicated hardware which takes over most of the multimedia decoding / encoding process. “With Windows 8 running on a Windows 8 certified PC, video decoding for common media formats will be offloaded to a dedicated hardware subsystem for media. This allows us to significantly lower CPU usage, resulting in smoother video playback and a longer battery life, as the dedicated media hardware is much more efficient than the CPU at media decoding.”

Ming-Chi Kuo, KGI Securities analyst expressed his belief in a report issued today that Apple will release a thinner, Retina-equipped Mac notebook next week. Kuo is also of the opinion that Apple will discontinue its line of 17-inch MacBook Pro's. Ming-Chi Kuo, KGI Securities analyst expressed his belief in a report issued today that Apple will release a thinner, Retina-equipped Mac notebook next week. Kuo is also of the opinion that Apple will discontinue its line of 17-inch MacBook Pro's.

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Apple to dish out $2.2 million for Australian 4G blunder Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/apple-to-dish-out-2.2-million-foraustralian-4g-blunder/16214.html June 9th, 2012

Apple was accused of misleading the Australian public by advertising the iPad as 4G compatible, even though it could not connect to any of the 4G LTE networks in Australia. Apple has agreed to pay about $2.2 million to make amends for it. According to the report, "We expect Apple (US) to unveil a new MacBook series independent from the MacBook Air and MacBook Pro lines at Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) in June. We expect the new MacBook to have the following features:

Apple was accused of misleading the Australian public by advertising the iPad as 4G compatible, even though it could not connect to any of the 4G LTE networks in Australia. Apple has agreed to pay about $2.2 million to make amends for it.

(1) Basic 13" model to be priced at US$1,199 (2) No disc drive (3) To come in both SSD and HDD (4) Lighter and slimmer than MacBook Pro, with equal computing power (5) Retinal display with tapered edge, larger battery capacity" Kuo thinks that this notebook will be released alongside upgraded versions of Apple's existing 13-inch and 15-inch notebooks, being reluctant to get rid of the 13-inch model due to its incredible popularity. Kuo has predicted in the past that Apple will discontinue its 17-inch MacBook Pro, and continues to affirm this point, citing estimates that the computer constitutes only 1% of Apple's notebook sales.

In the U.S, what's advertised as 4G is often just a souped up version of 3G. This is called HSPA+, as opposed to HSPA (3G). In other countries - or at least Australia - this practice is not apparently acceptable. The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission called Apple out for advertising the iPad as being 4G compatible even thought it could not connect to any of the country's real 4G LTE networks. The iPad's LTE chip is compatible with 700 MHz and 2100 MHz bands. Meanwhile, Australia's 700 MHz band is occupied by Television broadcasts, and the only other option is the 1800 MHz band, which the iPad cannot connect to.

Note that the mention in this image of an independent graphics chip under the 13" MacBook Pro is an error - it should be integrated graphics Apple's WWDC (Worldwide Developers Conference) is going to be held from next Monday to Friday. Everybody is, therefore, watching next week to see what products of the annual rumor mill will be confirmed or denied. The same goes for this story, which is only one of many that project new products/upgrades for the WWDC event.

While Apple has agreed to refund Australian customers who believed that the iPad would be compatible with 4G LTE, the company is also going to be dishing out $2.2 million dollars for the ordeal as well, according to The Australian. Right now, on its Australian website, Apple is not advertising the iPad as 4G compatible. It does use the term "ultrafast wireless"; although, it would seem that this entire situation proves Apple can't really compete with the fastest networks in the country - not yet, in any case. The 700 MHz band will be cleared up for wireless devices in Australia in 2013.

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WiFi Speeds Set to Increase in a Few Years Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/wifi-speeds-set-to-increase-in-a-fewyears/16213.html June 9th, 2012

Published by: VR-Zone

While it may be another year or two before these devices hit the market, and even longer before they become as ubiquitous as WiFi has, the future of wireless communication between devices is looking very promising. More information can be found here.

The Hotmail Metro makeover Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/the-hotmail-metromakeover/16220.html June 9th, 2012

Thanks to a new specification utilizing the 60GHz band of the wireless spectrum, you can look forward to streaming HD video seamlessly from one device to another, or transferring massive files in the blink of an eye, though it will take a few years for the technology to be common in the marketplace. WiFi is set to see a dramatic speed increase in the next few years, with faster routers and new devices capable of taking advantage of the incredible speeds offered by the newest specifications. Known as 802.11ac and 802.11ad, these specifications will allow for far faster data transfer speeds than is currently possible. 802.11ac operates along the 5GHz spectrum and is designed for whole-home coverage, but the largest speed increase will come from the 802.11ad devices. Operating in the 60Ghz frequency, this specification allows for transfer speeds of up to 7Gbps, orders of magnitude greater than the 802.11n specification, the current fastest implementation of wireless technology. The WiFi Alliance, the international organization responsible for certifying and approving new standards and devices, expects that 802.11ac product certification will begin in early 2013, but 802.11ad won’t begin until late next year, possibly longer. The certification process for the latter may not even include routers or modems. Many of the uses for 802.11ad are shorter-range than current wireless networks are set up for, with data being transferred within the same room rather than across a building; the signal is limited by the wavelength, since signals at 60GHz are much more easily blocked than signals with lower frequencies.

Leaked images of Microsoft Hotmail’s new look may lead you to think that Microsoft is trying to consolidate the appearance of all their user interfaces on just about all platforms (Windows, Hotmail, Live, etc). Leaked images of Microsoft Hotmail’s new look may lead you to think that Microsoft is trying to consolidate the appearance of all their user interfaces on just about all platforms (Windows, Hotmail, Live, etc). Windows 8 Metro interface may be just the beginning to a total overhaul of most of Microsoft’s user platforms. Hotmail is the latest recipient of Microsoft’s metro makeover. Although the leaked images look eerily similar to Google’s Gmail current looks, it does seem like Microsoft is making an attempt at trying to boost usability of their upcoming Windows 8 by making their Hotmail branch look similar to the new OS. Below are some leaked images of the new Hotmail UI:

The first devices to utilize 802.11ad are expected to be small devices like ultrabooks, smartphones, and televisions; imagine sending an HD video straight from your phone or laptop to your TV with no lag or compression, or a thin, light laptop that communicates with a docking station, which contains all the networking and expansion ports for the laptop, at speeds nearing USB3.0 wirelessly. These types of devices are the first kind expected to utilize 802.11ad. Research has already been happening in Singapore, as well as the United States, as far back as 2009 with the goal of producing chips that communicate on the 60GHz band in small, efficient packages. A prototype was revealed last year with signal speeds of 2 Gbps, less than half of the first confirmed device’s 4.6Gbps and almost a quarter of the maximum speed of the specification, but the developers claim that the slower speed allows their chip to use less than 15% of the power required for a device operating at maximum speed, making it perfect for use in hardware like tablets and smartphones, where efficiency and power consumption are the top concerns for any technology.

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Published by: VR-Zone

their product lineup may carry over to the MacBook lineup. According to a recent KGI analyst report, Apple may opt to call all their laptops MacBook in the future—dropping the “Air” and “Pro” from their current various lineup of MacBook laptops. Apple ditched the numerical system of the iPad and opted to call their latest tablet “the new iPad,” and the restructuring of their product lineup may carry over to the MacBook lineup. According to a recent KGI analyst report, Apple may opt to call all their laptops MacBook in the future—dropping the “Air” and “Pro” from their current various lineup of MacBook laptops.

Rumored specs for the “new Macbook” include—but not limited to—disposing of current LCD tech and going with the high resolution Retina display. Furthermore, the all-inone MacBooks will be slimmer than, and as powerful as, an “upgraded” 2012 MacBook Pro. The projected price point for an upgraded 2012 MacBook Pro will be the same as the new MacBook--$1,799. However, the new 15’’ MacBook will boast a 2880 x 1800 Retina display while the upgraded 2012 15’’ MacBook Pro will retain its current 1440 x 900 display. If the rumors for the new MacBook are true, then consumers will likely opt for the new MacBook instead of the Pro version. Ming-Chi Kuo of KGI expects that Apple intends to keep the MacBook Pro line on the table until consumer switches over to the new MacBook completely, and why wouldn’t they? The main ingredients to Apple’s new MacBook recipe include the following: The “Newmail” portion of the makeover is just a placeholder, and it will most likely revert back to “Hotmail” once the new interface goes live. So don’t worry about your @hotmail, because it won’t be changed to @newmail—at least most of us hope it won’t. Sources that obtained the leaked images report that the Hotmail makeover isn’t just for appearance sake, but it’s also “faster and cleaner”—more emphasis on the faster. The source also states that the new Hotmail UI provide a much more “simple, [and] fluid…interactive design,” that optimizes for enhanced functionalities on mobile devices such as tablets and smartphones.

Apple may add Retina display and dispose of "Pro" in MacBooks Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/apple-may-add-retina-display-anddispose-of-pro-in-macbooks/16219.html June 9th, 2012

Apple ditched the numerical system of the iPad and opted to call their latest tablet “the new iPad,” and the restructuring of

• Slimmer form factor, 18mm for 13’’ model and 19mm for 15’’ model • No optical drive on any new MacBook • Retina display: 2560 x 1600 for 13’’ and 2880 x 1800 for 15’’ • 50% narrower display edges compared to current MacBook Pros • 15-20% increase in battery capacity The arrival of the Retina display into the MacBook lineup may be the biggest factor that will persuade consumers to adopt the MacBook brand as a singular entity. Expect all Apple fans to brag about their high resolution MacBooks in the future—and yes, they won’t be referring to their laptops as “Air” or “Pro”, just MacBook.

Microsoft's proposed detachable dual screen smartphone Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/microsoft-s-proposed-detachabledual-screen-smartphone/16218.html

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Published by: VR-Zone

swag, you will get some curious eyes if your phone rings and you broke your phone in half just to take the call. Due to the source's request, vr-zone cannot display all the images in regards to Microsoft's proposed detachable dual screen smartphone, but you can view all the images as well as the related article here.

Microsoft isn’t even close to catching up with Android or iOS in the smartphone race, but that doesn’t mean it’s not conjuring up new ideas to promote their Windows Phone platform. In a recent patent publishing, we find that Microsoft is working on a detachable dual display smartphone.

Nokia take over by Samsung very unlikely Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/nokia-take-over-by-samsung-veryunlikely/16217.html June 9th, 2012

The Lumia 900 had a relatively lack luster launch, and that speaks volume for its maker, Nokia. There have been rumors that a Nokia take over is inevitable since its current business strategies are taking it nowhere, but south.

Microsoft isn’t even close to catching up with Android or iOS in the smartphone race, but that doesn’t mean it’s not conjuring up new ideas to promote their Windows Phone platform. In a recent patent publishing, we find that Microsoft is proposing a detachable dual display smartphone. The detachable displays basically have the same function as a Bluetooth headset and a smartphone, but with the exception that the Bluetooth headset has a built in screen. Okay, I may be over simplifying Microsoft’s detachable screens, but, in function, it is what it is—that is, you can talk on one display while viewing other things on another display. With Microsoft’s planned dual displays smartphone, a user can use one display for voice service, and the other for data service. For instance, you can talk to your business partner about his proposal with one screen while viewing his PDF document with the other screen. The two displays, in essence, works as two multi-touch devices that have direct access to each others’ components. Each display will have various sensors built into them so that they can recognize each other’s proximity, and functions. Users can drag and drop icons from one displays to another, or manipulate files using one display while viewing those manipulations in real-time on the other. Hence, there may be a possibility that you can use one display as a multi-touch keypad to edit a word document displayed on the second display. For simplicity sake, a Bluetooth headset and a smartphone will accomplish many of the functions of Microsoft’s proposed dual screen smartphone, but in terms of tech-

The Nokia Lumia 900 had a relatively lack luster launch, and that speaks volume for its maker, Nokia. There have been rumors that a Nokia take over is inevitable since its current business strategies are taking it nowhere but south. Essentially, all the news about Nokia currently revolves around the Lumia 900 or an imminent take over. Sales of the Lumia 900, according to various sources, seems to be “OK,” but the Nokia Windows smartphone just can’t keep up with Android or iPhone. Many of us may wonder if a union, if at all possible, between Nokia and Android may have saved the drowning phone maker. One recent rumor is that the South Korean tech giant Samsung maybe the one to intervene in Nokia’s dying hours and help it survive, but that’s a farfetched tale. Nokia and Samsung both make smartphones, but Samsung has dedicated itself to the Android platform while Nokia to Windows. Integrating the two companies’ business strategies and infrastructures will make it complicated for both parties—hence, a Samsung takeover of Nokia is very unlikely. Microsoft, however, is likely to be Nokia’s savior as the two have strong ties with each other through their smartphone relationship. Google took over Motorola Mobility and now it’s a Googlerola Android smartphone, so the possibility of a Micronokia Windows smartphone isn’t beyond anyone’s fantasy. However, ever since rumors of a possible Samsung takeover of Nokia started, market shares of Nokia have risen by about 6%, after a 40% fall the last three months. Will the rumors help Nokia regain its 40%? Not likely, but if anyone want to

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take a big gamble and bet on a Samsung-Nokia union, it may provide for a big pay day. Again, it is very unlikely.

Unreal Engine 4 is more powerful but requires less horsepower Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/unreal-engine-4-is-more-powerfulbut-requires-less-horsepower/16216.html

Published by: VR-Zone

to enhance FPS gaming. Although FPS gamers represent a significant portion of the gaming community, RPG and strategy games are equally popular. We believe that this fact led Corsair to design and release the Vengeance K90 Mechanical Keyboard and the M90 Gaming Mouse, peripherals designed with RPG/RTS gamers in mind, both of which we are going to examine and review today. Manufacturer’s features and specifications

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Vengeance K90 Performance FPS Mechanical Keyboard • Light, responsive Cherry MX Red mechanical switches for fast, efficient gaming action • 45g actuation Force The Unreal Engine (UE) 3, which powers a variety of high profile video games, requires some major horsepower to pull its dynamics and particles, but all that may change with the upcoming UE4.

• 2mm to actuation and 4mm to bottom

The Unreal Engine (UE) 3, which powers a variety of high profile video games, requires some major horsepower to pull its dynamics and particles, but all that may change with the upcoming UE4.

• Tuned silicon dome keyswitches: F1 through F12, Esc, PrtScn, Scroll Lock, Pause/Break, Insert, Home, Page Up Page Down, Delete, and End

During the last E3 event, the UE3 “Samaritan” demo ran off not one or two, but three GeForce GTX 580. At the 2012 E3, however, UE4 ran an impressive “Elemental” demo using only just one GTX 680—that’s right, one. A single 580 is not as powerful as a single 680, but three 580 is. What does this mean? Yes, you’ve guessed it; upcoming games utilizing the UE4 may not require some extreme rig to pull off all the in game fancies. Furthermore, the UE4 will include real time visual scripting (Kismet 2) so users edited codes will be in effect immediately.

Corsair Vengeance K90 Mechanical Keyboard & M90 Gaming Mouse Review Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/corsair-vengeance-k90-mechanicalkeyboard--m90-gaming-mouse-review/16212.html June 9th, 2012

• Rated for 50 million operations • Gold contacts

• Three banks of eighteen G Macro Keys with Macro Record and Bank Select hot keys • 36Kb of onboard memory for storing up to three sets of eighteen G keys for gaming on the go • On-the-fly, macro recording • Laser-etched, backlit keys with four illumination levels (off, 66%, 75%, and full illumination) selectable from the keyboard • Six multimedia keys — Stop, Previous, Play/Pause, Next, Mute, Volume Up/Down — with Solid metal, weighted volume "drum roller" • Windows Lock key for uninterrupted game play • Metal top plate for increased strength, durability and rigidity • USB pass-through connector giving easy access to a USB port on the back of the keyboard (USB 2.0/1.1/1.0) • USB Connector with gold plated contacts • 2m non-tangle cable • Adjustable feet tilt for optimum personalization and positioning

A few weeks ago we had a look at the Vengeance K60 Mechanical Keyboard and the M60 Gaming Mouse from Corsair, a set of gaming peripherals designed specifically to enhance FPS gaming. Although FPS gamers represent a significant portion of the gaming community, RPG and strategy games are equally popular. We believe that this fact led Corsair to design and release the Vengeance K90 Mechanical Keyboard and the M90 Gaming Mouse, peripherals designed with RPG/RTS gamers in mind, both of which we are going to examine and review today. A few weeks ago we had a look at the Vengeance K60 Mechanical Keyboard and the M60 Gaming Mouse from Corsair, a set of gaming peripherals designed specifically

Vengeance M90 Gaming Mouse • 5700 DPI Avago Technologies LaserStream Gaming Sensor

ADNS-9500

• Adjustable DPI in 100 DPI increments • 1000Hz/500Hz/250Hz/125Hz — 1msec/2msec/4msec/8msec response time — user selectable • Tracking rate of up to 165 inches per second, up to 30g acceleration, automatic frame rate control • Adjustable lift distance - Five selectable levels to fit your play style 8

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Published by: VR-Zone

• Surface quality detection • 15 programmable buttons • Nine ergonomically programmable buttons

placed,

side-mounted

• Comfortable ergonomic design with surfaces and grip improving textures

soft-touch

• Omron left and right click switches rated for eight million operations • 48KB of on-board memory for storing up to six "on the go" profiles with active profile LED • Aluminum metal frame and base for improved rigidity and mass distribution • Solid metal, weighted scroll wheel with rubberized scroll surface for improved finger traction control and feel • Ultra Low Friction PTFE pads for smooth performance and accurate gliding • USB Connector with gold plated contacts • 1.8m lightweight non-tangle cable

Activision confirms Angry Birds HD for consoles Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/activision-confirms-angry-birds-hdfor-consoles/16211.html June 9th, 2012

Bird-flinging pig-squashing action is coming to consoles with the release of Angry Birds HD, according to the game's developers. In an unusual move, Activision plans to release the casual game for consoles in full high-definition, with more details only weeks away. "We'll have some news for you in about two weeks," Activision told The Escapist. "Wait until you see Angry Birds on consoles in HD."

Angry Birds might be good fun and extremely popular, but it's probably one of the last games we would think of that would benefit from the high-definition treatment. Cartoon 2D graphics just tend not to look noticeably different with a higher resolution. The short-sighted among us might benefit from the larger displays on a TV screen, but we could just as easily hold our smartphones and tablets closer to our faces for the same effect. Casual mobile gaming like Angry Birds is typically seen as a threat to the console market, but if it can actually tap into the latter and help it grow, perhaps with some unique gameplay features (Wii U motion-controlled birdcatapulting, anyone?), then it might just be more of an asset than a threat.

Nintendo wants low price for Wii U Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/nintendo-wants-low-price-for-wiiu/16210.html June 9th, 2012

Nintendo is aiming for a low price for its Wii U nextgeneration console that it expects will leave consumers “pleasantly surprised.” Nintendo is aiming for a low price for its Wii U nextgeneration console that it expects will leave consumers “pleasantly surprised.” Reggie Fils-Aime, President of Nintendo America, told IGN that “unlike our competitors when they've launched historical systems to maybe start at a really high price and work their way down, we don't believe in that. We want to launch at a price that's going to represent an ongoing great value.” He compared the company's plan to that of the Wii, which stayed at a $250 price tag for a long time. He said Nintendo wants to launch at a price it can sustain over a significant period. “I think people are going to be pleasantly surprised, if you will, about the way we're managing the value equation," he added.

It is not clear what consoles we can expect the game on and if it will be a download-only title or something that finds its way onto store shelves. 9

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ASUS sneaks in a dual-port Thunderbolt expansion card during Computex Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/asus-sneaks-in-a-dual-portthunderbolt-expansion-card-during-computex/16209.html June 9th, 2012

He does not believe competing products will affect Nintendo's business model, either. "We don't look at what other people are doing; we step back and say, 'What would be fun? What would be unique? What would be different?'” He expects gamers to get the Wii U for Mario, Zelda and other Nintendo franchises, as well as the multiplatform games from third-party developers, suggesting there is no need for an additional game system. Exactly what the price will be is under wraps for now, but Nintendo has likely learned from the poor initial sales of the 3DS, when it cut the price from $250 to $169.99 just a few months after launch. Nintendo will want to avoid a repeat scenario by pricing the Wii U as low as possible to begin with in order to achieve the “mass market product” the company is aiming for.

There is some potential that the Wii U could be priced at $250 or maybe even less. The hardware, while significantly better than the Wii, is not exactly top of the range by today's standards, so it won't cost Nintendo an arm and a leg, and thus won't bump up prices unnecessarily. The system could come with just the new controller, relying on the fact that many people will already have one or two Wiimotes from their existing Wii system. Nintendo will probably also market a bundle for completely new customers. The “barebones” approach will keep costs down and make the Wii U very attractive for lower budgets and even hardcore gamers who plan to eventually buy an Xbox 720 or PlayStation 4.

Every year at Computex Taipei, certain vendors have this annoying practice of slipping in new products throughout the 5-day event, unannounced of course, hence the need for us journos to re-visit the show halls to see what we've left out. ASUS previously showed off the ThunderboltEX expansion card for select Z77/H77 motherboards and potential support on upcoming AMD AM3+ boards, and today they sneaked in a dual Thunderbolt port expansion card featuring the more expansive but full fledged Intel Cactus Ridge 4C host controller. Every year at Computex Taipei, certain vendors have this annoying practice of slipping in new products throughout the 5-day event, unannounced of course, hence the need for us journos to re-visit the show halls to see what we've left out. ASUS previously showed off the ThunderboltEX expansion card for select Z77/H77 motherboards and potential support on upcoming AMD AM3+ boards, and today they sneaked in a dual Thunderbolt port expansion card featuring the more expansive but full fledged Intel DSL3510 Cactus Ridge 4C host controller.

Like its single port sibling, the ThunderboltEX/Dual plugs into a PCIe x4 slot and has a cable to interface with the TB_HEADER pinout on select ASUS Z77/H77 or upcoming AM3+ motherboards. Two full-sized DisplayPort interconnect cables are provided to encapsulate DP signals from the graphics card output with the Thunderbolt data streams.

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In case you missed it earlier, ASUS also teased Thunderbolt support on upcoming revised AMD AM3+ motherboards.

Canon launches EOS 650D, world's first digital SLR camera with touch panel Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/canon-launches-eos-650d-world-sfirst-digital-slr-camera-with-touch-panel/16208.html June 9th, 2012

Canon has announced their new EOS 650D for amateur photographers. The latest addition in the EOS range claims to be the world's first digital SLR camera with intuitive touch panel, and features continuous AF Servo and powerful DIGIC 5 imaging processor.

Published by: VR-Zone

Equipped with an 18-megapixel CMOS sensor and the latest DIGIC 5 imaging processor, the new EOS 650D features a 3-inch 3:2 ratio Vari-angle ClearView LCD II capacitive touchscreen that lets you do the familiar touch gestures including swiping and pinching. The display also comes with anti-smudge coating and reduced reflective glare when taking pictures under bright conditions. The EOS 650D incorporates a host of improved functions and new creative imaging features such as wide ISO range from 100 to 12800 (expandable to 25600), Multi Shot Noise Reduction function whereby the camera can shoot four consecutive shots and automatically merge and align to compensate for noise while improving detail and definition. With the new Handheld Night Scene mode, photographers can capture dark scenes without using a tripod. Canon has also improved the EOS Scene Detection technology. Users can now apply the effects (Grainy/Black & White, Soft Focus, Toy Camera, Miniature, Art Bold,Water Painting, & Fish-eye) directly to their pictures without additional post-processing on the computer. In addition to the EOS 650D, Canon has also announced the EF-S18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM and the EF40mm f/2.8 STM. The EF-S18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM features reduced chromatic aberration with the inclusion of one UD lens element and one PMo aspherical lens element. The EF40mm f/2.8 STM comes in an ultra-compact and lightweight design, with a fast f/2.8 aperture, 7-blade circular aperture and aspherical lens elements to achieve high image quality. While the EOS 650D is announced today, you will not see the camera at this week's PC Show 2012 in Singapore. According to the company, the EOS 650D with the EFS18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS II lens will be available from all Canon authorized dealers at the end of June. The EOS 650D with EF-S18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM lens will be available around mid July. Pricing is as follow:Body only - S$1,149 EOS 650D with Kit I (with EF-S18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS II) S$1,299 EOS 650D with Kit II (with EF-S18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS STM) - S$1,699

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ASUS's AMD AM3+ Motherboards to get Intel Thunderbolt support? Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/asus-s-amd-am3-motherboards-toget-intel-thunderbolt-support-/16207.html June 9th, 2012

In one of the more intriguing discoveries during a relatively lackluster Computex, our counterparts at Chinese VRZone spotted an interesting feature on the upcoming ASUS ROG Crosshair V Formula-Z and other refreshed AMD AM3+ motherboards - Intel Thunderbolt support!

The mainstream M5A99FX PRO R2.0 and M5A99X EVO R2.0...

Over at the ASUS Computex booth at Nangang, we noticed a top to bottom refresh of all of the motherboard giant's Sockets AM3+ offerings for the AMD Bulldozer FX/Phenom II processors. We badgered a product manager for details and he answered with a cryptic "meet Windows 8 WHQL requirements" without elaborating on the changes. First we looked at the upcoming ROG Crosshair V FormulaZ (revised C5F), sneakily displayed at the bottom of a glass case. From what we know, the memory overclock capabilities of the board have been fine-tuned and storage options buffed up (internal SATA gains two ports and eSATA another additional port). The onboard sound solution was also bumped to Supreme FX III.

... also with the miracle header at the edge of the respective boards.

And then we saw something in the corner... Thunderbolt expansion header (TB_HEADER) for their new ThunderboltEX add-in card (more on that futher down).

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Published by: VR-Zone

And on the Sabertooth 990FX R2.0 too...

The function of the TB_HEADER pinout is for power and to send/receive signalling information (for hot plug and pray events) between the ThunderboltEX expansion card and the motherboard BIOS, the former being announced this week for adding Thunderbolt functionality to select ASUS Z77 motherboards. The card itself requires a PCIe x4 slot and probably uses a Cactus Ridge 2C host router (only has one Thunderbolt port as opposed to the 4C variant which has two). Another full-sized DisplayPort interconnect cable is provided to encapsulate DP signals from the graphics card with the Thunderbolt data streams.

What makes this discovery controversial is the fact that AMD is not part of the Thunderbolt group and has criticized the proprietary standard in the past, demonstrating their alternative “Lightning Bolt” at CES this year. Intel is also the only one supplying the Thunderbolt chips and has kept a tight leash over who or what gets the development kit and certification. Not to mention the tedious BIOS and nightmare O/S driver integration for the current handful devices to work on Windows. It remains to been seen whether Intel will allow ASUS to bridge this divide…

O2 Set to Block Access to Pirate Bay Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/o2-set-to-block-access-to-piratebay/16204.html

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The latest British ISP to announce compliance with a courtordered block of The Pirate Bay is O2, along with their subsidiary Be Broadband. More European ISPs are blocking access to The Pirate Bay, with British ISP O2 preparing to block its customers from the popular file-sharing site at 0001 GMT on June 8th. This also means that customers of Be Broadband, a subsidiary company of O2, will also lose access to the site. O2 is the latest ISP to acquiesce to an order by the High Court in April; a judge ruled that The Pirate Bay was in fact facilitating copyright infringement by providing links from which pirated content could be downloaded. In a statement, O2 said that “[t]he main UK internet providers were ordered by the high court to block access to specific IP addresses and URLs used by The Pirate Bay website. We have no option but to comply with this order and will be doing so overnight.” Be Broadband also posted a message about the measures, in this case on their company blog, stating that “[o]ur parent company was one of the named ISPs so we are obliged to comply. We wouldn’t choose to do this voluntarily but we need to comply with UK laws just like any UK business. We’re aware of the concerns voiced by members about the broader issue.” Of the ISPs featured in the court order, only TalkTalk has yet to comply with a block of the Swedish-based file sharing site. BT also has yet to block access to the site, but they were granted extra time to make the necessary arrangements; a spokesman for the ISP said that they would be making an announcement “in due course.”

New Haptic Interface Developed, Will Be Showcased at SID Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/new-haptic-interface-developed-willbe-showcased-at-sid/16203.html June 9th, 2012

A new haptic interface which allows buttons and shapes to physically rise from a touchscreen as needed has been developed, and will be showcased at this year's SID I-Zone. In a press release today, Tactus Technology, a company based out of Fremont, CA, announced the first public demonstration of its Tactile Layer component, a “nextgeneration haptic user interface” that has buttons, guidelines, or shapes rise from the surface of the touchscreen before receding back into invisibility. The Tactus Tactile Layer is the first deformable tactile surface. It creates dynamic physical buttons that users can see and feel before entering data into the device. What makes this possible is an “innovative microfluidic technology” that

Published by: VR-Zone

causes an apparent physical change in the screen before receding back into the screen when no longer needed. After receding, there is reportedly no after-image of the button; the screen is as smooth as it was to begin with. The panel is a flat, transparent surface that adds little to no thickness to a standard display, as it becomes incorporated into the display stack. This allows manufacturers to create devices with all-new ergonomics and form factors, since they no longer need to worry about where the screen and keyboard are in relation to what the user is seeing. When the technology is triggered, the layer deforms around the required area, creating buttons or shapes of specific sizes, heights, and firmness on the surface of the screen. These buttons can be seen and interacted with just like real, physical buttons. The new technology will be on display at SID in the I-Zone, using a prototype Android-powered tablet. The original press release can be read here. A video showing off the new tech can be seen here.

Apple Seeks Injunction Against Samsung Galaxy S III in U.S. Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/apple-seeks-injunction-againstsamsung-galaxy-s-iii-in-u.s./16200.html June 9th, 2012

Apple is seeking to include Samsung's Galaxy S III smartphone, yet to be released in the U.S., in the litigation against Samsung regarding the Galaxy Nexus they codeveloped with Google. Late last Tuesday, Apple brought a motion against Samsung formally asking the court for permission to add the Samsung Galaxy S III as another product affected by their motion for an injunction against the Galaxy Nexus, which Samsung co-developed with Google. The current litigation against Samsung is its second in California’s courts, and this motion shows Apple is taking the offensive against Android. Earlier in the week Apple filed a complaint with the ITC seeking an immediate importation ban on 29 HTC devices that allegedly infringe on Apple’s patents. The same patent used against HTC, a “data-tapping” patent, is one of two patents Apple is using to target the S III. Apple purchased an S III to inspect it for patent violations in the United Kingdom, where the device has been available since May 29th; it’s not scheduled to launch in the United States until June 21st. The motion notes that press reports indicate that “Samsung has already sold over nine million preorders of the Galaxy S III; indeed, the Galaxy S III has been reported to be the most extensively preordered piece of consumer electronics in history.” Apple is still analyzing the S III in regards to infringement of two other patents filed against the Galaxy Nexus, but decided to help facilitate and accelerate the court’s analysis by limiting the request to two patents which are clearly infringed: a unified search patent (i.e., Siri) and the data-tapping patent. 14

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Apple’s lawyers reportedly spoke with Samsung’s on May 31st to discuss including the S III among the accused products. They asked, among other things, for Samsung to “confirm that it will not launch the Galaxy S III in the United States until the Court has ruled on Apple’s preliminary injunction motion,” but Samsung’s lawyers replied on June 4th that the motion “will have no bearing on the release date of the Galaxy S III.” Yesterday afternoon local time, Samsung replied to the motion put forth by Apple, arguing that the court should deny the request as it’s too late to supplement the motion that was put forth back in February; they suggested that a new preliminary injunction motion is needed. The full text of Apple’s motion can be found here.

The DropBox money making strategy

Published by: VR-Zone

recognizes a DropBox popup as just a “regular” function that requires permission. Thus, once given permission, a user’s DropBox account may become full and that leads to user having to pay additional fees for more storage space. This strategy may work in DropBox’s favor as many users view DropBox as a legitimate free tool that doesn’t harm their computers in any way. Google’s Drive is DropBox’s competitor, but what Drive hasn’t achieved so far is having a lot of users pay them directly.

YouTube to stream 2012 Summer Olympic for free to 64 countries Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/youtube-to-stream-2012-summerolympic-for-free-to-64-countries/16205.html June 9th, 2012

Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/the-dropbox-money-makingstrategy/16206.html June 9th, 2012

In 2011 YouTube streamed the Prince William and Kate Middleton wedding, and next month it will be streaming free live HD contents of the 2012 Summer Olympics to 64 countries in Asia and Africa. DropBox has long been a popular cloud storage service, but apparently the cloud exclusive company has some other motives in mind to make more money. That strategy is actually pretty simple—popups that ask users to agree to import and share their contents whenever a device is plugged into a PC.

In 2011 YouTube streamed the Prince William and Kate Middleton wedding, and next month it will be streaming free live HD contents of the 2012 Summer Olympics to 64 countries in Asia and Africa.

DropBox has long been a popular cloud storage service, but apparently the cloud exclusive company has some other motives in mind to make more money. That strategy is actually pretty simple—popups that ask users to agree to import and share their contents whenever a device is plugged into a PC. We all appreciate some free cloud storage, but DropBox is trying to slither its way into user’s pocket by telling users to sync their device every time it’s plugged in. Albeit, many users will actually read the popup thoroughly before giving “permission” to import, but there are quite a few people who

According to the BBC, securing coverage rights may cost “billions of dollars” for many broadcasting companies who wish to cover the events on their respective networks. Hence, it is amazing—and a mystery—that YouTube managed to pull off this deal with the International Olympic Committee (IOC). Regardless of whatever went on behind the scene to get YouTube the broadcasting rights, this is incredible news for many countries around the globe. As long as there’s an internet connection (possibly broadband for HD contents), people from the 64 selected countries can stream live the Olympic Games without having to pay a dime—or whatever currency they’re using. Some of these countries include India, Indonesia, Kenya, and Nigeria. A complete list can be found here. 15

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Link to the IOC's announcement concerning the 64 countries is down, but here's the full list: The live-streaming on the IOC’s YouTube channel will provide exclusive digital access to the London 2012 Olympic Games in territories where digital broadcast rights have not already been acquired by the IOC’s broadcast partners: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Brunei, Bhutan, Cambodia, East Timor, India, Indonesia, Iran, Laos, Malaysia, Maldives, Mauritius, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Vietnam. And in 42 Sub-Saharan African territories on a nonexclusive basis, including: Angola, Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, Comoros, Democratic Republic of Congo, Republic of Congo, Côte d’Ivoire, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Rwanda, São Tomé and Príncipe, Senegal, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Swaziland, Tanzania, Togo, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

Self-guided bullet will improve shooter's accuracy by 90% Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/self-guided-bullet-will-improveshooter-s-accuracy-by-90-/16202.html June 9th, 2012

Snipers are outdated because soon there might be a homing bullet. Larry Shipers, a mechanical engineer, claims that his prospective bullet can improve a shooter’s accuracy by as much as 90%!

Published by: VR-Zone

Snipers are outdated because soon there might be a homing bullet. Larry Shipers, a mechanical engineer, claims that his prospective self-guided bullet can improve a shooter’s accuracy by as much as 90%! Current bullets, when fired, spin at such a fast rate that it is theoretically not possible to alter its axis of revolution. Shipers’ simple solution to this—he calls it his “secret sauce”—is to make the bullet not spin. If the bullet doesn’t spin, then added technology can provide guidance like it does for a self-guided missile. The 0.50-caliber bullet has an optical sensor in the nose, a battery powered 8-bit processor with included guidance algorithm, and four tiny motored fins in the tail to help it accomplish its mission. Wind and other environmental factors can throw a bullet off course by as much as 30 feet, but Shiper claims that his bullet’s trajectory is only altered by a few inches in his computer simulation. A smooth-bored barrel is required for the bullet to function correctly, but the bullet can be loaded into a standard cartridge without any modifications. Shiper states that electronics mockup in demo bullets withstood the initial launch. The only problem now is finding funding for Shiper to build a complete prototype.

last.fm user privacy breached following massive linkedin password leak Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/last.fm-user-privacy-breachedfollowing-massive-linkedin-password-leak/16201.html June 9th, 2012

There has been another security breach on yet another popular website, and this time it’s last.fm—a popular music website. Last.fm’s leak is just another suit following the six million users of LinkedIn.com—a professional social networking site —having their passwords exposed. A notice from last.fm states that they take user’s privacy “very seriously,” and urged users to “change their passwords immediately” for further security measures. "Can it be coincidence? It seems unlikely to me. There's a mystery in the middle of the LinkedIn breach about how they got the data. You have to worry there's a common vulnerability,” Graham Cluley—Sopho’s security expert— told the BBC. The recent privacy meltdown by some major sites may be due to more than just skilled hackers, but possibly more to shared common security flaws between the hacked sites. Experts and victimized sites recommend that users use different passwords for their various online accounts. This 16

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may seem like common sense, but there are still many people who prefer to have one password for most of their online accounts.

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VR-Zone.com | Tech News for the Geeks! VR-Zone | Stuff for the Geeks is a bi-weekly publication covering the latest gadgets and stuff for the geeks.

Samsung wants to make a social network like Facebook Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/samsung-wants-to-make-a-socialnetwork-like-facebook/16254.html June 12th, 2012

We all know Samsung is one of the “big shots” in hardware R&D and manufacturing, but news out of the Korea is that Samsung will launch a Facebook of its own. Sources from within Samsung are actually referring to the social networking project as the “Samsung Facebook.”

“We are confident that the service will be popular globally,” says a Samsung official. To further emphasize that Samsung wants to make its mark on social networking, they want their social network to have “a server-based computing structure and disperse with a network of servers across different countries.” The South Korean tech giant is a force to reckon with and we will see if their newly found aspiration for social networking pays off.

Razer Blade gaming laptop lands in Singapore Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/razer-blade-gaming-laptop-lands-insingapore/16253.html June 12th, 2012

The Razer Blade, which claims to be the world’s first true gaming laptop, was unveiled last year. It retailed in North America in Q4 2011, and today, the company has brought the gaming machine to Singapore.

We all know Samsung is one of the “big shots” in hardware R&D and manufacturing, but news out of the Korea is that Samsung will launch a Facebook of its own. Sources from within Samsung are actually referring to the social networking project as the “Samsung Facebook.” Developing a platform that attempts to provide nonFacebook functionalities is one thing, but trying to compete with Facebook with a Facebook-like service will be quite a challenge. Currently, Samsung has a social networking service called “Family Story” that allows photo sharing, chatting, and schedule reminders available on selected Samsung devices. Developers are hoping that they can build upon the Family Story framework to produce a cross platform social networking service that can compete or be better than Facebook. If the features of Family Story only consists of what’s listed above then it has a long way to go before it can compete with Facebook. Samsung officials hope to launch a “polished and finished” version of Family Story by the end of this year. The social networking service will be only on Samsung devices first, and then it will make its way to other devices of other brands and OS. Samsung hasn't confirmed an exact name which it wants to use for its Facebook-killer.

Min-Liang Tan, chief gamer and CEO of Razer, introduces the Razer Blade which boasts a 17.3-inch full high definition screen, measures 2.24cm thin and weighs 2.92kg. (It is a lot slimmer and lighter than most of the gaming laptops of similar screen sizes in the market to date). The Razer Blade is not just portable, but it also promises performance; it is powered by an Intel Core i7 2640m CPU and NVIDIA GeForce GT555m GPU which are sufficient to run most of the latest 3D games including Diablo 3, StarCraft 2, Battlefield 3, Star Wars: The Old Republic and Mass Effect 3. Singapore will be the first country in Asia, outside of North America, to have the Razer Blade. 1

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check it out at Best Denki at Orchard Takashimaya (http:// ap.razerzone.com).

HTC launches Desire V, Desire C and One S in Singapore Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/htc-launches-desire-v-desire-c-andone-s-in-singapore/16252.html June 12th, 2012

HTC Asia has announced the launch of their next generation Desire series phones - Desire V and Desire C - with Beats Audio technology, and the One S which claims to be the slimmest and most elegant phone yet. All three phones will be available on 16 June, this weekend.

The gaming laptop has a sleek aluminum black finish, green back-lit LED keys and green-lit halo on the power button. One unique feature of the Razer Blade is the Switchblade User Interface (on the right of the keyboard) that allows you to bind an infinite number of commands, skills and macros to the 10 dynamic adaptive tactile keys with custom icon overlays for the game you are playing. While the Razer Blade looks to be a great portable gaming laptop, we wondered if there are many gamers who would bring their gaming laptop wherever they go, set it up and play their favorite game. Most of the gaming laptops today are designed to be desktop replacements, and to remain stationary on your table in your room than to be lugged around with due to their bulkiness. According to a Razer spokesperson, the company has done their research and surveyed online gamers with regards to this trend of mobile laptop gaming. But unfortunately, Razer is unable to share the figures and findings on that. So you may be asking, how much is the Razer Blade? Well, the Razer Blade will retail at S$3,999.99 and is going to be available this Thursday, 14 June. Needless to say, that is more expensive than the other gaming laptops, and even the new Macbook Pros that were recently announced at WWDC. Not to mention, the Razer Blade will not be using the third generation Intel Core processors, but the second generation ones which the company said is sufficient to run the latest games. But if you want a out-of-this-world gaming laptop and don't mind paying such a high premium,

The HTC Desire C is designed as an affordable smartphone for users who are getting their first Android phone, or upgrading from an existing one. It features the latest HTC Sense 4.0, powerful battery, access to thousands of apps on Google Play, and runs Android 4.0 ICS. It is available in red, white and black finishes, and priced at S$338 (before telco subsidies).

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Resembling the One X, the new HTC One S features a sophisticated light-to-dark gradient finish on its aluminium body. It is equipped with a 1.7GHz dual-core Qualcomm Snapdragon processor and sports a 4.3-inch bright Super AMOLED screen. The phone is also crafted with contoured Corning Gorilla Glass that provides sufficient durability. The One S runs Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) with HTC Sense 4, and features new camera capabilities - you can take pictures even when you are shooting HD videos. The HTC One S has a price tag of S$948 (before telco subsidies) and comes with free Beats Solo Headset.

Apple inks deal with TomTom for maps The Desire V is the company's new Android smartphone with dual-SIM card slots for busy business professionals who need to keep track of their work and personal lives on a single mobile companion. It sports a brilliant 4-inch display, and features the latest HTC Sense 4.0 integrated with Android 4.0. The HTC Desire V (3G and GSM) claims to be the most affordable 4-inch smartphones on the market, offers one of the best-in-class interfaces and lets users switch easily between networks for better coverage, regardless of where they are. The Desire V will retail at S$498 before contract.

Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/apple-inks-deal-with-tomtom-formaps/16251.html June 12th, 2012

After Apple's announcement that it would be ditching Google Maps in favour of its own Map app at its keynote WWDC address, TomTom has revealed that the Cupertino, California-based company has signed an agreement to use its maps. After Apple's announcement that it would be ditching Google Maps in favour of its own Map app at its keynote WWDC address, TomTom has revealed that the Cupertino, California-based company has signed an agreement to use its maps. The details of the agreement have been kept under wraps, but it should give Apple global rights to use TomTom Maps, which cover over 200 countries and territories, and encompass over 35 million kiometres across the world. This is an interesting revelation, as it suggests that Apple is still relying on others to provide its map technology, whereas Google is compiling its own data. Of course, with such strong rivalry between the two companies it is not surprising that Apple would rather ink a deal with someone else. 3

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Encroaching on Google's territory is likely to only escalate tensions between the two companies, but there is an element of “fair game� in the technology industry at the moment, with competing firms stepping on each other's toes fairly regularly and in fairly obvious ways. Often these rivalries are muted when there is a reliance on products, such as Apple's use of Samsung chips or Google Maps, but that is slowly changing as companies seek to become more self-sufficient or establish ties with other third-party vendors. Apple's new Maps app is one of the big driving points behind iOS 6, the latest version of its mobile operating system due out in Autumn. It will feature vector-based maps for smoother and more fluid graphics and text, even when zooming, panning and tilting, a Flyover mode for interactive 3D views, real-time traffic information, and local search. We contacted Apple for more details on this deal and will update you as soon as we get them.

CommunicAsia2012 and EnterpriseIT2012: What to expect Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/communicasia2012-andenterpriseit2012-what-to-expect/16249.html June 12th, 2012

The CommunicAsia2012, EnterpriseIT2012 and BroadcastAsia2012 are back, at Marina Bay Sands and Suntec Convention Centre from 19 to 22 June. At the press conference this morning, Singapore Exhibition Services (SES) and Huawei shared some key highlights and statistics for the show.

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Agnes Leung, senior project manager for CommunicAsia, gave some statistics about the annual information and communications technology (ICT) exhibition and conference that is held in Singapore - with close to 2,000 local and international exhibitorsand 200 expert speakers at the CommunicAsia2012 Summit. The wide range of technologies that will be showcased include 3.5G/LTE/4G, Display Technologies, IPTV, Mobile Media and Advertising, Mobile Innovations, IP-enabled and NextGen Services and Applications, Near Field Communications, Wireless Technologies and Satellite Communications. Some of the event highlights include the worldwide launch of Winmate Communication E-430M; Zensorium Tinke, a dongle that can measure heart rate, respiratory rate and the amount of oxygen in one's bloodstream - first in Asia; soft launch of Panasonic "rugged" Tablet; worldwide launch of ThinkCube Cronus, an open source cloud computing solution; Taztag TazPad, the world's first Android tablet with NFC and Zigbee technology, fingerprint sensor and Secure Element; Senko "Connected Home"; and Vidyo VidyoPanorama that offers immersive video conferencing first in Asia. Chinese Telecommunications equipment and services company Huawei will have a huge presence at CommunicAsia2012 with the launch of their new Ascend series smartphones. Last year, Nokia has a presence at CommunicAsia2011, but it looks like the Finnish company will not be participating this year; neither is Korean electronics manufacturers Samsung or LG. There is also a new Mobile Monday (MM) Developer Lounge at CommunicAsia2012 whereby experts get to share their views on unique opportunities in various Asian markets. There will also be the launch of the first ever Mobile Southeast Asia Report that highlights the unique strengths of Southeast Asia in mobile arenas. The theme for CommunicAsia2012 Summit is "Strategies to a connected world", and there will be 14 tracks, two workshops, more than 170 sessions and over 200 speakers including Jolin Aliza Knox, managing director of Commerce for Google APAC, and Ambassador David A.Gross - Wiley Rein LLP.

Microsoft charges Tablet OEMs a whopping $85 for Windows RT Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/microsoft-charges-tablet-oems-awhopping-85-for-windows-rt/16250.html

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When Microsoft announced its tablet strategy with the Windows RT, many thought that Microsoft will change its pricing model for OEMs too, signaling a shift in strategy. Reality is however, vastly different with Microsoft requesting as much money as OEM version of the Windows 7 Home Premium. During our meetings with multiple vendors on the Computex Taipei, we were talking about pricing options for taking the Windows RT route instead of (free) Android from Google. While it was rumored that Microsoft decided to change their ways and offer a price of about 35 dollars – the reality is that Windows RT will cost staggering USD$80-95 dollars, with $85 being the most commonly quoted price. This means that there is no way that a similar specced Windows RT powered device will be priced in the same league as its Android-ARM competitiors. While this opens a path for more impressive devices, it seems to us that Microsoft and Intel both took the Ultrabook route and charge “an arm and a leg” for the RT-powered tablet. Given that NVIDIA’s BoM (Bill of Materials) sped past the $100, there isn’t a lot of room for sub $500 tablets. In fact, we were told that the launch tablets will probably go for $549-799, which isn’t exactly the most affordable product. Premium products will go for $799 and $899. What do you think, is this pricing outrageous or expected and if you are considering, would you buy a Windows RTbased tablet or not?

Highlights from AMD's Computex Taipei Showcase Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/highlights-from-amd-s-computextaipei-showcase/16248.html June 12th, 2012

Computex Taipei might be over already but we still have a couple of stories from there to fill. Here we take a look at some of the Opteron and Trinity APU FM2 motherboards and Radeon 7000 series GPUs, presented to you by the fabulous AMD booth girls.

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Apple brings Maps and Facebook integration to iOS 6 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/apple-brings-maps-and-facebookintegration-to-ios-6/16247.html June 12th, 2012

Apple has announced iOS 6, which brings over 200 new features to its popular mobile operating system, including Apple Maps and Facebook integration. Apple has announced iOS 6, which brings over 200 new features to its popular mobile operating system, including Apple Maps and Facebook integration. The software update will launch on the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch and will include an Apple-designed map app, helping Apple remove its reliance on Google Maps, improvements to Siri, and a ticket app called Passbook. “iOS 6 continues the rapid pace of innovation that is helping Apple reinvent the phone and create the iPad category, delivering the best mobile experience available on any device,” said Scott Forstall, SVP of iOS Software at Apple. “We can’t wait for hundreds of millions of iOS users to experience the incredible new features in iOS 6 including the new Maps app, expanded Siri support, deep Facebook integration, Shared Photo Streams and the innovative new Passbook app.” Apple's Maps app is the pivotal feature of the new release, featuring vector-based map elements that make graphics and texts smooth and zooming, panning, and tilting fluid. Turn-by-turn navigation, with spoken directions, Flyover for interactive 3D views, real-time traffic information, and local search makes this a viable alternative to Google Maps.

Published by: VR-Zone

Facebook integration is the other big feature of iOS 6 and something that has made it into OS X Mountain Lion also. Users will be able to see notifications in the Notification Centre, update their status from there, view their friends in the Contacts section, schedule events and birthdays using the Calendar, Like content from the App Store and iTunes, and share content easily. Siri, the big feature of the iPhone 4S, is also getting a facelift, adding new language support and some additional functionality, like asking Siri to update Facebook or Twitter, launch an app, or use Eyes Free mode to interact with the iPhone with just the user's voice. Passbook is an interesting new app that lets users buy and compile all their tickets and passes in one place. Users can scan coupons, check into a hotel, or store their concert tickets. A neat feature is that it will automatically display passes based on the user's location, so, for example, a users who enters a coffee shop will instantly have access to their loyalty card. The app will also alert users of last minute gate changes and flight delays at the airport. iOS 6 also features Guided Access, which lets users lock the device into a single app, improvements to the Safari browser, support for FaceTime calls over mobile networks, VIP Mailbox functionality, a Do Not Disturb option for calls, and improvements for Apple's growing Chinese audience. The beta version and SDK are available immediately for iOS Developer Program members. The update will release for free in Autumn, most likely accompanying a new iPhone device.

Apple reveals OS X Mountain Lion features Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/apple-reveals-os-x-mountain-lionfeatures/16246.html June 12th, 2012

Apple has officially announced OS X Mountain Lion, the ninth major release for its Mac operating system, with new and revamped features inspired by tablet and smartphone computing. Apple has officially announced OS X Mountain Lion, the ninth major release for its Mac operating system, with new and revamped features inspired by tablet and smartphone computing. The release comes with over 200 features, including a revamped Messages app, Notification Centre, systemwide sharing, Facebook integration, dictation, Power Nap, AirPlay Mirroring, game centre, and Gatekeeper for enhanced security.

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iCloud is built into the core of the operating system, making it easier to store, access and share files from the cloud. System-wide sharing allows users to share links, photos, videos and other files from any app to a wide variety of thirdparty services, including Facebook, Twitter, Flicker and Vimeo. Facebook integration means friends will show up in Contacts, content can be easily shared, and notifications will show up in the Notification Centre. iMessages replaces iChat, integrating message sharing across all Apple devices, including the iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch. Users can send group messages, add attachments (including high-definition video), and continue a conversation from any device associated with the user's account. It also features instant messaging with AIM, Yahoo, Google Talk and Jabber.

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Mountain Lion will be available as an upgrade from Lion or Snow Leopard for $19.99 from the Mac App Store and will release in July.

Apple updates MacBook range, releases new MacBook Pro Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/apple-updates-macbook-rangereleases-new-macbook-pro/16245.html June 12th, 2012

Apple has announced its new lineup of Mac laptop computers, with improved design and beefier specs under the hood. The revamped MacBook Air, which Apple claims revolutionised the laptop market, will offer processor options up to a 3.2GHz (with TurboBoost) dual-core i7, memory of up to 8GB, 512GB Flash storage, and a highdefinition camera for FaceTime. Best of all, and a surprise for Apple, is that it will be $100 cheaper than previous models. The new version is available from today. The MacBook Pro range is also getting an upgrade, with the 13-inch model featuring choices of a 2.5GHz i5 or 2.9GHz i7 processor, while the 15-inch model features a choice between 2.3GHz or 2.6GHz quad-core i7. Graphics will also be improved, up to 60 percent faster than previous models, and the devices will also come with USB 3.0 ports.

The Notification Centre allows users to see notifications from OS X and third-party apps in a single place, with customisation options so users can alter which notifications they receive and how many items are shown at a time. There is also a feature to temporarily suspend all notifications when users want no distractions. Dictation lets users dictate text anywhere it can be typed, including in apps from third-party developers, while Power Nap allows the device to update mail, contacts, and other core areas while the device is in sleep mode. Gatekeeper improves security by giving more control over apps. Settings can be altered so that only apps from the Mac App Store can be installed, apps from anyone who has a unique Developer ID from Apple can be installed, or any app from anyone can be installed. App sandboxing and kernel ASLR also help protect against malware and other cyberattacks. This release will also feature AirPlay Mirroring, so users can send full high-definition video streams from their Mac to a HDTV, the Game Centre for iOS social gaming on a Mac, a faster Safari browser, with Smart Search Field, improvements for Apple's growing Chinese audience, and over 1,700 new APIs to enhance developer content.

There will also be a new MacBook Pro with a 15-inch 2880x1800 resolution retina display, called by Apple “the most beautiful computer we have ever made.� It is lighter than the 13-inch model, thinner than a person's finger, and packs a punch, with up to a 2.7GHz quad-core i7, up to 16GB of RAM, up to 768GB of Flash storage, a GeForce GT 650 M graphics card, ThunderBolt and USB 3.0 ports, and a battery life of up to 7 hours. Prices start at $2,199 and the new model is available immediately. The ever wasteful Apple is touting that users can watch full 1080p video with more than three million pixels left over. That is a whopping 220 pixels per inch. It seems that the revamps to all of its devices include the move to the retina display, despite it offering a much higher resolution than needed, or indeed noticeable, on a computer. Some 10

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improvements that will help, however, include 75 percent less reflection and 29 percent more contrast. It does not appear that any of the other Mac devices are getting an upgrade at this time.

Apple to unveil iOS 6 at WWDC Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/apple-to-unveil-ios-6-atwwdc/16244.html June 12th, 2012

Apple is to announce new software and hardware at its Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) this week, with iOS 6 top of the agenda. Apple is to announce new hardware and software at its Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) this week, with iOS 6 top of the agenda. “We have a great WWDC planned this year and can’t wait to share the latest news about iOS and OS X Mountain Lion with developers,” said Philip Schiller, SVP of Worldwide Marketing at Apple. “The iOS platform has created an entirely new industry with fantastic opportunities for developers across the country and around the world.” Activities at the event will include technical sessions with Apple engineers, hands-on labs for providing code-level assistance, meet and greet with fellow developers, the Apple Design Awards, and, of course, the various announcements from the top dogs at Apple.

Tim Cook, who took over as CEO from the late Steve Jobs last year, will show off some of the new lineup starting at 10:00am PST (6:00pm GMT), and we'll be sure to fill you in on all the details. Apple is expected to unveil a series of new Mac computers, with faster processing power.

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The star of the show will undoubtedly be iOS 6, though the features of the updated operating system have yet to be revealed. A new version typically accompanies a new hardware product and it is widely believed that iOS 6 will launch with the iPhone 5 in Autumn. However, it is not expected that Apple will announce the latter at WWDC. The event will also feature showcases of OS X Mountain Lion for the Mac, which will go on sale in Summer. This updated version is intended to beat Microsoft's Windows 8 to the punch by implementing tablet and smartphoneinspired features and usability. More details, like a release date and price, are expected today.

NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M (Kepler) spotted on leaked image of 2012 MacBook Pro board Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/nvidia-geforce-gt-650m-keplerspotted-on-leaked-image-of-2012-macbook-pro-board/16243.html June 12th, 2012

Speculations about Apple adding Retina displays to their upcoming lineup of MacBooks may be true after all, because a leaked image of Apple’s new MacBook Pro logic board revealed an NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M (Kepler) GPU.

Speculations about Apple adding Retina displays to their upcoming lineup of MacBooks may be true after all, because a leaked image of Apple’s new MacBook Pro logic board revealed an NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M (Kepler) GPU. Since the resolution of a Retina display will be much higher than that of the current LCD/LED displays, a GPU upgrade is definitely a good sign. Moreover, the source claims that the 2012 15’’ MacBook Pro will not change in appearance at all, and it will offer three different CPUs—2.3/2.5/or 2.7 GHz Ivy Bridge.

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Although the rumors of Retina displays in MacBooks only apply to “the new MacBook,� it is adding validity to the rumors because the 650M is a step up from the Radeon 6750M/6770M in the current offerings of MacBook Pros.

Targus Father's Day Special Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/targus-father-s-dayspecial/16240.html June 12th, 2012

Targus has recently launched their new suite of accessories for Apple devices which are not only stylish, but also practical and incredibly mobile whether for work or leisure. Here are some of the new products that you can get as gifts for Father's Day. Targus Lap Lounge for iPad and tablets (AWE7601US)

The new Targus Bluetooth Wireless Keyboard for iPad is lightweight and ergonomically designed. Ideal for travelling, the keyboard provides a comfortable typing angle which minimises strain on the wrists and arms. With a battery life lasting up to seven months, the keyboard is equipped with a low power indicator that pre-empts users when to charge the Targus Bluetooth Wireless Keyboard. Price: S$79.90 Targus Backup Battery for iPad (APB27US)

Is the new iPad too warm for comfortable holding after a period of usage? Not if you're using the new Targus Lap Lounge. The Lap Lounge is made up of soft, comfy cushioned bottom which is designed to rest easily on the lap without the need for an additional pillow between the lap and a regular, hard-bottomed iPad stand. The top consists of a sturdy stand to lean the iPad or any 10-inch tablet for hands-free viewing pleasure, and you can also the stand for different viewing angles while gaming or movie-watching. Price: S$89.90 Targus Bluetooth Wireless Keyboard for iPad (AKB33AP)

The Targus Backup Battery for iPad claims to provide 5 to 10 hours of extra juice for added convenience and mobility. It can even charge a smartphone up to 3 - 5 times before it runs out. Boasting Lithium polymer technology which ensures a long life span, the four level battery indicator on the battery provides ample warning when a recharge is required. Price: S$69.90

Post-Computex high end GPU analysis - More memory for Radeon, quad-GPU attempts for Kepler? Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/post-computex-high-endgpu-analysis--more-memory-for-radeon-quad-gpu-attempts-forkepler-/16239.html

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While the volumes aren't high, most vendors had enough to show at least a sample of GTX680 - and occasionally a GTX690 - on their booths, while AMD gunned for higher clock revisions and more memory. So, you thought all was over this summer with Nvidia GTX680 gaming benchmark leads over AMD? Not exactly: first, even on the meetings behind closed doors, accusations flew - likely with some reason - of Nvidia's "little more than paper launch" with being extremely hard to get cards and limited volumes / yields / name it. Of course, if the GK104 is full of such problems, how would then the upcoming nearty double-sized GK110 die fare in the availability department? Anyway, all major vendors had both top end AMD and Nvidia GPU boards displayed, aside from those vendorspecific GPU houses like say Galaxy and EVGA on Nvidia side, or Sapphire and Powercolor on the AMD side. Anything interesting worth highlighting?

Back to Nvidia, there was a not-so-secret' card and then another gem hidden inside You-Know-Who's showroom - a quad-GPU, dual PCB monster made out of four GTX680class GK104 GPUs in one card. Aside from handling something like 600 - 800 W of consumption even if the clocks are slowed a bit, it remains interesting to see who would buy this - only the users keen on buying TWO of them, of course, for 8-way SLI. Now, if such a card ever gets released, two big problems prop up: the thermals, of course, and the latencies: having TWO layers of PLX PCIe V3 bridge chips to accomodate four GPUs on one PCIe link adds something like 300 ns of extra latency for every single word transfer, which can impact both FPS gaming and GPU compute. Also, if you're really into 8-way (compute), why not get four dual GPU boards with a mainboard having four native x16 PCIe V3 slots, like the Asus Z9PE-D8 WS or EVGA SR-X, and put in two Xeon E5 CPU to have 16 core feeding all those GPUs as well? After all, if willing to spend so much on 8 GPU units, may as well spend a bit on unreleased, unlocked CPUs to handle them, too...

App developers still favor Apple over Android Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/app-developers-still-favor-appleover-android/16237.html June 12th, 2012

Well, remember that the initial AMD HD7970 was very conservatively binned, with plenty of upwards potential even without the usual OC tricks? And, of course logically, the process would have been further fine tuned since then? So, the HD7970 GHz edition existence was pretty much confirmed by the vendors around, and yes its availability should be as good as - or even wider than - the GTX680. A, say, 1075 MHz default clock HD7970 would beat back the GTX 680 in even more gaming tests, not just the highest resolutions ones. Also, more importantly, it would reach an admirable 1.1 TFLOPs in double precision FP peak performance! Not far from the expected GK110 die expected half a year later, at much lower price for now. This should be good news for GPU compute guys, who need all the double precision FP performance they can get. But they also need more memory to store the GPU compute datasets without going often across the slower PCIe bus to the system memory. So, in the absence of FirePro cards based on this chip (AMD workstation GPU division, wake up please??), Sapphire has its 6 GB HD7970 version finally shown here, running in CrossFire. With 1100 MHz GPU 'turbo button' and large memory to boot, this is an inexpensive serious GPU compute card for those willing to get into teraflop-class FP through the OpenCL programming model - yet still at gaming card prices.

Despite Android’s dominance in sales of devices, Apple’s iOS products still command the attention of most of the mobile app developers. According to various analytics and reports, mobile app developers find more benefits in developing for Apple’s platform first. Despite Android’s dominance in sales of devices, Apple’s iOS products still command the attention of most of the mobile app developers. According to various analytics and reports, mobile app developers find more benefits in developing for Apple’s platform first. Eric Shmidt, Google’s Executive Chairman, said last year that the Android’s market share dominance will in turn drive developers to favor the Android platform over Apple’s. Shmidt’s prediction that volume will drive more developers to make apps for Android is partially true, but what he didn’t know was that volume won’t necessarily reflect higher revenues. Various factors influence a developer’s decision to whether or not to start on an Apple platform or an Android’s. One of which is based solely on the probability of an app making money. Apple paid out $700 million to developers in the last quarter of 2011, whereas, Google paid out only $210 million for the whole 2011 calendar year. Flurry, a mobile apptracking service, reports that—given both platforms have the 13

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same amount of users—for every $1.00 a developer earns in iTunes Apple Store he gets $0.23 from Google Play. Therefore, in terms of monetary compensation, it is much wiser for a developer to work on an app for Apple first then port it to Android.

The next major factor that influences developer’s decision to go with Apple first is because Apple’s iOS software and hardware aren’t as fragmented as Android’s. Currently, Android runs on 1,363 device models from 599 different brands. Moreover, most of the Android devices still run on the outdated Android 2.3 (65%), and the most recent Android ICS powers only about 7% of the devices.

Apple’s tight consolidations of their various devices help developers create apps that put much more emphasis on device compatibility. Apple’s most up-to-date platform, iOS 5, powers 86.2% of Apple’s devices according to data gathered by the Train Times app for the iPhone and iPod touch. Lastly, users on the Apple platform are more likely to pay for an app as compared to Android users. This makes sense because if your friend purchases an app in iTunes and then raves about it, then chances are you may want that app, too, if you own an Apple device. However, that may not be the case if you own an Android device since the app may not be available or not compatible with your device. Android may be dominating the sheer volume of devices it powers, but that volume is not the main factor in driving developers to make apps for it—and by extension, not generating the revenues that Shmidt had hoped it would for Google.

Industry giants betting heavily on Windows 8's success Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/industry-giants-betting-heavily-onwindows-8-s-success/16236.html June 12th, 2012

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Microsoft is infamous for taking other’s innovation and making it “better,” Intel is famous for expensive processors, and the OEMs that uses Microsoft’s and Intel’s products in their own product are famous for hiring a lot of lowwage workers. That said, will Intel’s, Microsoft’s, and OEMs’ past success continue to thrive with Windows 8 or will the world experience a complete shift towards Apple’s end to end products and Android’s open source platform?

Microsoft is infamous for taking other’s innovation and making it “better,” Intel is famous for expensive processors, and the OEMs that uses Microsoft’s and Intel’s products in their own product are famous for hiring a lot of lowwage workers. That said, will Intel’s, Microsoft’s, and OEMs’ past success continue to thrive with Windows 8 or will the world experience a complete shift towards Apple’s end to end products and Android’s open source platform? Computex 2012 is over, and although it may seem that the research and development of the various products showcase feats of design and ingenuity, the products also reflect a hazy outlook for the Microsoft-Intel-OEM alliance. Microsoft has been under pressure for years now to create a Microsoft exclusive platform that can compete with Android and Apple OS/iOS. While the majority of the world still uses Windows PCs, the reality is that the technology landscape has shifted towards mobility, and that is where Android and iOS have dominated. This is evident because Windows Phone comprises of only about 7-8% of the world’s total smartphones, whereas Android has a stake of about 60% and iOS with 20%. Whether or not Microsoft’s Metro platform takes off remains to be seen, and Microsoft will have to go above and beyond to persuade iOS and Android app developers to give Metro a shot. Intel is under pressure to put more resources into R&D of mobile processing and to cut prices on their chips— something Intel is known to not do. The iPad and ARM equipped Android tablets are becoming more and more popular as 19.4 million units were shipped in 2010, but that number exploded to 68.4 million in 2011—and is expected to increase by 85% in 2012. The rapid growth of non-Intel based tablets has caused Intel to put a lot of resources into Ultrabooks, which Intel hopes will help the laptop PCs regain lost ground. OEMs are under pressure to cut prices on all their products without reducing quality. Apple has created a cult following for their products, and Android has seduced manufacturers with a royalty-free OS that is highly optimized for ARM chips. OEMs that are still hanging onto Microsoft and Intel

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for an OS and CPU for their products are stuck with paying for an OS and Intel’s expensive chip.

rumors. Until Apple gives an official statement about dropping support for certain products, stay tune!

ARM processors are already optimized for mobile devices —and it certainly does not cost as much as an Intel chip —so manufacturers that have chosen to go the AndroidARM route can build high quality devices without cutting corners. Moreover, people within the industry speculate that Microsoft plans to charge OEMs approximately $100 for each Windows 8 OS installation, and Windows Phone 8 may follow with a premium price tag as well.

The complete list of links can be found here.

The outlook for the Microsoft-Intel-OEMs alliance doesn’t look very good, but perhaps Windows 8 will turn their bleak circumstance around. The key to its success is not so much in how it may or may not outperform competing platforms, but rather experts predict that Windows 8 needs heavy amounts of promotions. What makes this whole thing a mess is that Microsoft is playing catch up to Android and iOS in the mobility department, Intel is refusing to cut prices on its processor, and OEMs is pay high royalties to Microsoft and Intel while under pressure to make high quality products. These three groups have long been each other’s benefactor, but if Windows 8 fails we may experience an industry-wide storm of resentment and bad blood.

NVIDIA Computex 2012 Show Girls Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/nvidia-computex-2012-showgirls/16234.html June 12th, 2012

NVIDIA showed off some of their Tegra 3 tablets, smartphones and Kepler GPUs at their Nangang Computex booth. Why were we so impressed? The Trio of Showgirls who agreed to this photoshoot

Apple's undownloadable iOS 6 beta builds links leaked Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/apple-s-undownloadable-ios-6-betabuilds-links-leaked/16235.html June 12th, 2012

A list of links directed to some of Apple’s iOS 6 beta builds has been leaked, and although the links direct people to “Your session has expired,” it helps legitimizes speculations that Apple will be dropping iOS 6 support for various products.

A list of links directed to some of Apple’s iOS 6 beta builds has been leaked, and although the links direct people to “Your session has expired,” it helps legitimizes speculations that Apple will be dropping iOS 6 support for various products.

First up, the sexy GTX 690 featuring two Kepler GK104 GPUs

The links include third-gen iPad and iPad 2, iPhone 4S/4/3GS, fourth-gen iPod touch, second and third-gen Apple TV, a iOS 6 Beta PDF Guide, an installation PDF guide for Apple TV software, and Safari 6 Developer Preview for Lion. From the list it seems like Apple will be dropping support for first-gen iPads, and all iPod touch prior to the fourth-gen. Apple owners that own devices that aren’t on the leaked list don’t be disappointed just yet, because these are only 15

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HTC One X

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ASUS's Transformer Prime Tablet

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Facebook privacy policy voting fails due to low turnout Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/facebook-privacy-policy-voting-failsdue-to-low-turnout/16233.html June 12th, 2012

The result is out, and the Facebook democracy experiment has failed. Facebook’s attempt at asking users to vote on whether or not the current privacy policy should change ultimately gathered only 342,600 votes. That may be a lot of voters if you’re talking about a city, but Facebook has over 900 million users!

The result is out, and the Facebook democracy experiment has failed. Facebook’s attempt at asking users to vote on whether or not the current privacy policy should change ultimately gathered only 342,600 votes. That may be a lot of voters if you’re talking about a city, but Facebook has over 900 million users! “A very very small minority of people that use Facebook voted, which was pretty disappointing from our point of view,” says Jaime Schopflin—spokeswoman for Facebook. “A very very small” amount of people is an understatement. If you do the mathematical calculation, the turnout for the voting is a minuscule 0.1%. Facebook states that a 30% voting turnout is necessary to consider the vote as binding. If you’re in the mood to ridicule Facebook even more, then 0.1% means that 99.9% of Facebook users didn’t know or care enough to click on the “Privacy Policy” link.

Crytek's future is in free to play titles Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/crytek-s-future-is-in-free-to-playtitles/16232.html

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June 12th, 2012

An Indie-gaming-film industry trio consisting of the film 9’s Shane Acker, Brown Bag Films, and Valve will be teaming up to create the upcoming film Deep. Utilizing Brown Bag Films’ experience in producing children’s animated TV programs and Valve’s Source game engine, Acker will direct an Indie genre that may end up as another Valve indie film distribution.

Cevat Yerli, CEO of Crytek, has revealed that the company’s future lies in free to play (F2P) titles. Sony, among other big names in the gaming industry, is already putting big money into developing upcoming F2P titles such as Bullet Run, so it’s understandable that Crytek seeks to head in the F2P direction also.

An Indie-gaming-film industry trio consisting of the film 9’s Shane Acker, Brown Bag Films, and Valve will be teaming up to create the upcoming film Deep. Utilizing Brown Bag Films’ experience in producing children’s animated TV programs and Valve’s Source game engine, Acker will direct an Indie genre that may end up as another Valve indie film distribution.

Cevat Yerli, CEO of Crytek, has revealed that the company’s future lies in free to play (F2P) titles. Sony, among other big names in the gaming industry, is already putting big money into developing upcoming F2P titles such as Bullet Run, so it’s understandable that Crytek seeks to head in the F2P direction also. Yerli made it clear at the 2012 E3 that his company will not be putting any more effort into developing boxed products in the future. Warface, Crytek Kiev’s multiplayer FPS, will mark the studio’s entrance into the F2P realm. Yerli went as far as to say that Crytek’s commitment to F2P development involves not only effort but also monetary investments to back it its product. “As evident in Warface, our approach is to ensure the best quality, console game quality. That implies budgets of between $10 million to $30 million, so no compromise there, but at the price-point of $0 entry,” says Yerli.

According to GameInformer.com, "Valve's tools and technologies, based on its Source game engine, allow Acker and Brown Bag real-time rendering, and editing, simplified character animation.” If Deep makes a deep enough impression on viewers/critics, then perhaps a transition to a video game will be much easier since the movie utilizes the Source engine to begin with. In any case, chances are Deep will be distributed through Valve, and the game too if it comes about.

Anonymous retaliates against internet censorship in India Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/anonymous-retaliates-againstinternet-censorship-in-india/16230.html June 12th, 2012

Step aside Kickstarter game developers, big time gaming studios may not beat you with passion and dedication for the art, but they will surely beat you with money. Many current boxed products are “milking customers to death” Yerli claims—because gamers have to dish out the initial investment to buy the boxed product and if they want the updates and DLCs, they need to pay additional fees. Crytek, along with other major studios, believes that the future of gaming lies in F2P because games will become services rather than the traditional standalone products. The good news is major game studios, such as Crytek, are considering to become more involved in the F2P market, and the bad news is that they will have loads of money to back up their F2P games—bad news because independent and startup developers will have a much harder time competing in the F2P arena.

Shane Acker, Brown Bag Films, and Valve team up to produce "Deep" Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/shane-acker-brown-bag-films-andvalve-team-up-to-produce-deep-/16231.html June 12th, 2012

One way to retaliate against governance censorship of the internet is to hack the sites of the organizations/companies that support censorship. Anonymous, an internet activist group, has been hacking into various sites and temporarily disabling them to express their frustration towards banned sites and blocked contents by various Indian internet service providers (ISPs).

One way to retaliate against governance censorship of the internet is to hack the sites of the organizations/companies that support censorship. Anonymous, an internet activist group, has been hacking into various sites and temporarily disabling them to express their frustration towards banned sites and blocked contents by various Indian internet service providers (ISPs). Recently the Indian government approved the Ashok Kumar order which was designed to protect copyrighted music and films in India. However, Anonymous claims that the implemented policy has an indirect effect on people to don’t pirate copyrighted contents on the internet.

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Sites such as Pastebin, Piratebay, and Dailymotion are currently banned or blocked by India's ISPs, and Anonymous claims that copyright infringements based on users who post pirated contents do not reflect the “common man” that use the sites to share a lot of necessary noncopyrighted contents. “File sharing is the lifeline of the internet, that’s why it came into being,” says tomgeorge in the Anonymous’ chat room. Anonymous’ method of retaliation may not be viewed as civilized, but the group argues that the Indian government isn’t concern with how private organizations are censoring India’s internet. “We are not protesting arbitrary, extra-judicial censorship, where not even the government knows—or cares— who controls what,” says @anamikanon, an Anonymous member. In addition cyber guerilla warfare through DDOS attacks, Anonymous has also been spotted in various parts of India in masks and holding up anti-censorship signs. According to the BBC, the group intend to continue its protest and hacking attacks until the Indian government lifts restrictions that Anonymous deems unfair.

Rumored Droid RAZR HD vs Galaxy S III specs Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/rumored-droid-razr-hd-vs-galaxy-siii-specs/16229.html June 12th, 2012

The Droid RAZR HD may be Motorola’s answer to Samsung’s Galaxy SIII, and the leaked images look awesome, but are the rumored specs as impressive as the SIII?

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If the Droid RAZR HD intends to compete with the SIII, its dimension must support a screen that is as big as or bigger than the SIII. The screen resolution is reported to be 1196 x 720, which is the exact same resolution as the SIII. Next, and probably the most crucial component, is the CPU which is rumored to be a Snapdragon S4 dual-core. The European version of the SIII boasts a quad-core, so there’s not much competition there. However, for the North American market, the RAZR HD and SIII will both have a dual core so the playing field seems to be leveled. One crucial part of the rumored RAZR HD that may make it lose out to the SIII is that it may come with 1 GB RAM, that’s 1 GB less than the SIII. Even if it can’t compete with the SIII in specs, it sure as heck looks cool enough for me to utter “Beam me up captain” into it.

Linaro optimized Android ICS performs 100% better than stock AOSP Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/linaro-optimized-android-icsperforms-100-better-than-stock-aosp/16228.html June 12th, 2012

Keep your current Android smartphone, because the Linaro dev team has managed to boost performance of the stock Android ICS 4.0.4 by 100%! Okay, these optimizations only apply to ARM devices, but chances are you have an ARM Android phone. Keep your current Android smartphone, because the Linaro dev team has managed to boost performance of the stock Android ICS 4.0.4 by 100%! Okay, these optimizations only apply to ARM devices, but chances are you have an ARM Android phone.

The Droid RAZR HD may be Motorola’s answer to Samsung’s Galaxy SIII, and the leaked images look awesome, but are the rumored specs as impressive as the SIII? Appearance wise, the Droid RAZR HD looks like a piece of space age technology from Star Trek. The leaked images reveal that the back plating of the phone is made of carbon fiber like its cousins—the RAZR and RAZR MAXX, the dimension and weight are currently unknown, but rumor has it that it will come with a 3000 mAh battery, which is likely to add a hefty number to the overall weight of the phone.

Through various hardware and software optimization, the Linaro Android 4.0.4 achieved an average of 60 fps in all 0xBenchmarks (OpenGL Cube, OpenGL Blending, OpenGL Fog, and Flying Teapot), whereas, the stock AOSP 4.0.4 was getting around only 30 fps. 0xBenchmarks mainly deals with the CPU, so the impressive performance increase does not reflect the GPU.

NHTSA aims to create federal safety guidelines for in-car technology Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/nhtsa-aims-to-create-federal-safetyguidelines-for-in-car-technology/16227.html June 12th, 2012

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Infotainment systems and navigational equipments all make the experience of being in a car more enjoyable, but not necessarily safer. It’s great to have an MP3 player built into your car, but is it necessary to have an in-dash system that can surf Facebook or check Twitter?

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conditions, but also appeases to what consumers want— checking Facebook status updates while driving.

Verizon and AT&T drop Dropbox 50GB promotion Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/verizon-and-at-t-dropdropbox-50gb-promotion/16226.html June 12th, 2012

It only takes a split of a second to cause an automobile accident, but the general consensus among automotive makers is that tasks not related to handling a vehicle when behind the wheel should not “take longer than two seconds.” Infotainment systems and navigational equipments all make the experience of being in a car more enjoyable, but not necessarily safer. It’s great to have an MP3 player built into your car, but is it necessary to have an in-dash system that can surf Facebook or check Twitter? According to wired.com, The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is aiming to create national distracted-driving guidelines for automakers. These guidelines may possibly reflect popular behind the wheel habits such as talking on the phone without a handless device, or it may also include regulations on how an infotainment device operates when a car is in motion. There is currently no exact “blueprint” on how manufacturers should develop or integrate their in-dash technology, and so many automobile makers are still considering the two second distraction rule. However, if the NHTSA aims to propose some federal guidelines for an in car technology such as an infotainment system then Gloria Bergquist—spokeswoman for the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers—suggests that a “single set of guidelines should address all of these devices…[and] not go device by device.” According to NHTSA’ Deputy Administrator Ron Medford, writing a single guideline for in car devices may cause ambiguity between devices that might not be included in the guidelines. For instance, a smartphone that acts as a remote for controlling an infotainment system may not be considered as a part of the guideline since it is not listed as part of the device. Therefore, a more general guideline will be more useful as it applies to both of the devices that are causing distracted driving.

Dropbox currently partners with various cellular carriers to add an extra 48GB of cloud storage, but AT&T and Verizon have opted to not partner with Dropbox. The promotion runs the length of an “average” contract, and neither carrier has any comments concerning their decision. Dropbox currently partners with various cellular carriers to add an extra 48GB of cloud storage, but AT&T and Verizon have opted to not partner with Dropbox. The promotion runs the length of an “average” contract, and neither carrier has any comments concerning their decision.

A speculation on why Verizon and AT&T are opting to not give users some mega cloud storage is perhaps because they have found and alternative to Dropbox—perhaps, Google Drive? This is strictly theoretical, but it won’t surprise anyone if Google has somehow undermined Dropbox, and stuck their nose into Dropbox’s business strategy.

The NHTSA’s intention to make guidelines that encompasses general unsafe driving practices doesn’t mean that it’s trying to make it hard on automakers. “We can and will do both, we’re moving towards finalizing the guides for automakers on in vehicle electronic devices that provide the features consumer want without… sacrificing safety by distracting the driver,” Medford told the press at Telematics Detroit. Medford’s choice of words may possibly imply that the NHTSA will cooperate with automakers, and vice versa, to create a system that not only provides safer in-car driving 21

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VR-Zone.com | Tech News for the Geeks! VR-Zone | Stuff for the Geeks is a bi-weekly publication covering the latest gadgets and stuff for the geeks.

Blizzard launches Diablo 3 real-money auction house Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/blizzard-launches-diablo-3-realmoney-auction-house/16291.html June 14th, 2012

Blizzard has launched its real-money auction house for Diablo III in the Americas, with players able to buy and sell loot in-game with real US dollars, Australian dollars, and Mexican pesos. Blizzard has launched its real-money auction house for Diablo III in the Americas, with players able to buy and sell loot in-game with real US dollars, Australian dollars, and Mexican pesos. The feature, which was delayed from the original Diablo III launch, adds a deeper economic element to the game that goes well beyond the normal auction house and makes gold-farming, the traditional bane of online games for years, a potentially lucrative affair for both players and Blizzard itself.

The ever-crafty Blizzard has learned from years of experience with World of Warcraft, where it has banned players for farming gold and then selling it for real money on various websites, many of which are advertised by spammers in game. Blizzard's solution for Diablo III was to effectively hire these gold farmers by legalising the concept, with Blizzard getting a nice 15 percent cut of the profits. The company has implemented tight security on this feature, requiring that all participating players have an authenticator, which is very understandable, though some have criticised the requirement, as they believe it forces them to dish out additional funds. Users can, however, employ a mobile authenticator. A Battle.net SMS Protect service, which requires users to enter codes sent to their mobile phone, will also be employed for anyone using PayPal as a payment method.

Some players are unhappy with the idea, which they consider a “pay to win” scenario, since gamers can simply buy good gear with their hard-earned cash instead of earning it in game, while others who like to grind have touted it as a nice way to make some extra cash.

European players have to wait another while before getting access to the real-money auction house, which is restricted by region. Players wanting to use the Chilean peso, Argentine peso and Brazilean real will also have to wait. In-game messages suggest the European launch will be tomorrow, Friday 15 June, so gamers should not have to wait too long before parting with their €250 on an uber digital sword or shield.

The problem with the system is that items are going for extraordinarily high prices, with many on sale for the maximum price of $250, several times more than the cost of the game itself. While obviously the vast majority of these will never sell, the system would not be in place if at least someone out there, rich or insane, did not buy items with real world cash.

Wikileaks founder Julian Assange loses extradition appeal Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/wikileaks-founder-julian-assangeloses-extradition-appeal/16290.html June 14th, 2012

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Julian Assange, founder of whistleblowing website Wikileaks, has lost his appeal against extradition to Sweden, where he faces charges of alleged rape and sexual molestation. Julian Assange, founder of whistleblowing website Wikileaks, has lost his appeal against extradition to Sweden, where he faces charges of alleged rape and sexual molestation.

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oriented form-factor. These include 12 thumb macro buttons (G9~20), two central macro buttons (G7~8), the three main buttons (left, middle, right clicks), and two side-scrolling key-type buttons that can be clicked by tilting the scrollwheel.

The UK's Supreme Court made the verdict today by a majority of 5 to 2, denying further requests for submissions by Assange's legal team, leaving the Swedish whistleblower one step closer to a possible prison sentence. The court rejected his claims that the European Arrest Warrant used by Swedish authorities was invalid and unenforceable, a view likely to be echoed by European courts.

The 12 thumb macro buttons are divided into two sets, each with its own index bar, and uniquely shaped caps, which gradually become intuitive, and are designed to be ergonomic. Each of the 12 are labeled with illumination, and the color of the illumination can be customized from the RGB palette, using the Logitech Gaming Software application, from where you assign macro functions. The illumination's brightness, and type (eg: constant, pulse, groove, etc.,) can be customized. The mouse ships with three reference macro profiles, of which two are for popular MMOs. The mouse is clearly not meant for claw grip, and only palm grip gives you access to the thumb buttons.

Assange's lawyers have 14 days to file an appeal with the European Court of Human Rights, a last-ditch effort to prevent his extradition, where his team will claim he has not had a fair hearing in the UK. The 40-year-old faces allegations that he raped one woman and sexually molested another. He denies the accusations, labelling them as an attempt to subdue him for his part in orchestrating some of the world's largest leaks of classified government and military documents and cables ever.

Logitech Intros G600 MMO Mouse Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/logitech-intros-g600-mmomouse/16288.html June 14th, 2012

Peripherals giant Logitech rolled out its latest G-Series gaming mouse, this time targeting the MMORPG market. The G600 MMO gaming mouse packs a staggering 20 buttons, and is designed for games in which quick access to as many macro buttons as possible, is key.

Under the hood, is a razor-sharp 8,200 DPI optical sensor, with the chops to process 11.25 megapixels/second. This yields an acceleration of 25G, and 4.06 meters/second speed. The mouse uses the USB interface, with 1,000 reports/second rate. It uses a fiber-sleeved 2 m USB cable. Measuring 118mm x 75mm x 41mm, the G600 MMO has a fixed weight of 133 grams. Its traction is care of two large teflon feet, with 0.09 Âľm (dynamic) and 0.14 Âľm (static) coefficients of friction. Its three main buttons can hold up to 20 million clicks, and the feet hold good for 250 km of wear (that's a lot). The Logitech G600 MMO gaming mouse is expected to reach markets in July, with a price-tag of US $79.99 (SG $102.62).

With a design that is clearly inspired by the Razer Naga, the G600 MMO packs a total of 20 buttons in its right2

June 14th, 2012

Passbook promises to be major selling point for iOS 6 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/passbook-promises-to-be-majorselling-point-for-ios-6/16287.html June 14th, 2012

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sound that important until the example of plane tickets is given, where a gate change automatically updates the ticket and notifies the user, saving considerable time and headache at the airport. Cards and passes can, of course, be deleted from the app, with Forstall demonstrating a little visual fun as the card is shredded on the screen before you. Not an essential feature, of course, but the attention to detail is nice.

One of the new features of iOS 6 revealed by Apple at its Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) this week is Passbook, an app that stores and intelligently displays tickets and passes, and one that shows particular promise. One of the new features of iOS 6 revealed by Apple at its Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) this week is Passbook, an app that stores and intelligently displays tickets and passes, and one that shows particular promise. Passbook is an incredibly simple idea. It takes all your tickets, passes, and loyalty cards and keeps them in a single, easily-accessible location, almost as if you had them all stored in your physical wallet. Scott Forstall, SVP of iOS at Apple, called it “the simplest way to get all your passes in one place.” This simplicity is a major selling point, but even more appealing is the functionality, which automates some of the process based on your location. For example, when you enter a Starbucks café your loyalty card will be immediately accessible from the lock screen (providing, of course, you have location tracking enabled). You can then just swipe across the icon to open and display it, just as you would with the unlock bar to access the rest of the phone.

The success of Passbook is almost guaranteed, because it takes what already exists – digital passes – and improves the concept by addressing key concerns like trying to find a ticket or forgetting to use your loyalty card. It does not try to introduce a full-on virtual wallet, where most stores still rely on hard cash or credit cards, but employs the existing digital passes of stores that have already invested in smartphone scanners that can read the barcodes on shiny, reflective touchscreens. It is this taking of what is currently available and improving it that has been considered a hallmark of Apple in recent years, and we see it again in the form of Passbook.

Intel plans on releasing 3rd gen Core-i3 after June 24 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/intel-plans-on-releasing-3rd-gencore-i3-after-june-24/16284.html June 14th, 2012

The app will even display the balance on the card and will update immediately when a payment has been made, removing the need to constantly ask employees how much you have left on your card.

Intel announced earlier today that its 3rd-gen Core-i3 will be available after June 24th, as opposed to press reports that it won’t be available until August.

Another feature that was highlighted is the fact that the passes are “live” and thus constantly updated. This does not 3

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Published by: VR-Zone

The news came out of Intel’s Taiwan branch when official clarified to the press that Intel had no intentions of withholding or delaying its entry-level Ivy Bridge CPU. Adding to Intel’s announcement, the official said that Intel will continue to focus on shifting 40% of consumer notebooks to Ultrabooks by the end of 2012. Current global economic conditions and delay of the i5 and i7 may hamper that goal. Taiwan’s Acer Inc. had to revise their Ultrabooks production forecast to accommodate Intel’s delay and gloomy market conditions. Ultrabooks will account for 12-15% of Acer’s total notebooks shipment in 2012, as compared to their previous forecast of 12-20%.

Sophos Mobile Security's top five Android malware Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/sophos-mobile-security-s-top-fiveandroid-malware/16283.html June 14th, 2012

First on the list is Andr/PJApps-C, which Sophos identifies as a tool for cracking paid apps. Next is the Andr/ BBridge-A, also known as “BaseBridge,” which uses HTTP to communicate with central servers to communicate potentially confidential information. Thirdly, there’s the Andr/BatteryD-A which claims itself as a “Battery Doctor,” but in reality it communicates with HTTP servers to communicate potentially confidential user information. Fourth on the list is Andr/Generic-S, which Sophos claims to be an aggressive adware that varies in potentially harmful functions. Lastly, there’s the Andr/DrSheep-A, which is a firesheep-like exploit that hijacks a user’s Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn sessions.

10,000 Nokia employees will be out of a job Sophos Mobile Security for Android just released its data in regards to the top five most commonly detected malware on Android. The data were gathered through installations of Sophos Mobile Security for Android on various devices, and from 118 different countries. Sophos Mobile Security for Android just released its data in regards to the top five most commonly detected malware on Android. The data were gathered through installations of Sophos Mobile Security for Android on various devices, and from 118 different countries.

Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/10-000-nokia-employees-will-beout-of-a-job/16282.html June 14th, 2012

Sad news today for the employees of Nokia as officials have announced that the company plans to cut approximately 10,000 jobs globally.

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Sad news today for the employees of Nokia as officials have announced that the company plans to cut approximately 10,000 jobs globally. Nokia plans to shut down its R&D department in Ulm, Germany, and Burnaby, Canada. Also its central manufacturing plant in Salo, Finland will be slashed. Competition from Apple’s iPhone and Google’s Android based smartphones have taken a huge chunk out of Nokia’s market share. Samsung ousted Nokia en route to becoming the largest seller of cellphones. Nokia now has a 22% market share compared to Samsung’s 25%. The struggling cell phone company also reported a net loss of €1.07 billion last year, and that trend doesn’t seem to be stopping. Nokia’s share price plummeted 7% to €2.05 in today’s early Helsinki trading hours.

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A company’s flagship product development should always be treated as if it’s the heart of the company, and any leaks essentially rips apart the company’s most important organ —and in turn, tremendous monetary loss. The time frame leading up to the release of the Samsung Galaxy S III were filled with legitimate info leaks, but also some outrageous speculations. In a recent post on Samsung’s official blog site, the S III R&D team revealed how they were able to keep the S III’s R&D on the down low while maintaining their sanity in spite of the chaos around them. The S III R&D team basically lived a double life; a top secret S III life and a life outside of the S III. It was quite obvious that the family of the S III R&D teams knew of the team’s work, and, more often than not, the team was asked directly by members of their family about the S III.

Nokia official state that the company intends to cut jobs and other assets to “ensure Nokia’s long-term strength.” For the time being, Nokia’s strength lies in making affordable phones—whether it’s a feature phone or a smartphone. However, immense competitions from Samsung, Taiwan’s HTC, and China’s ZTE (ZTE is focused on mass producing budget phones) will make Nokia’s planned recovery extremely difficult. Just last year Nokia was still the top cellphone maker, but a year later, 10,000 Nokia employees will suffer because Nokia was unable compose a business model to keep itself relevant.

How Samsung S III engineers kept their work under wrap Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/how-samsung-s-iii-engineers-kepttheir-work-under-wrap/16281.html June 14th, 2012

A company’s flagship product development should always be treated as if it’s the heart of the company, and any leaks essentially rips apart the company’s most important organ —and in turn, tremendous monetary loss. The time frame leading up to the release of the Samsung Galaxy S III were filled with legitimate info leaks, but also some outrageous speculations. In a recent post on Samsung’s official blog site, the S III R&D team revealed how they were able to keep the S III’s R&D on the down low while maintaining their sanity in spite of the chaos around them.

“I got so many questions about the GALAXY S III from my friends and family. By I’d say ‘don’t ask me or you’ll get me fired. I told them to check it out after it was officially made public,” said Senior Engineer Young Doo Jin. Byung Joon Lee, S III mechanical engineer, added, “My eldest son is in the 6th grade. He knew that I had worked on the GALAXY S and S II. So I guess he assumed that I’d do S III also. Every time he saw an article on the internet about the GALAXY S II he’d ask ‘Dad! You’re making the SIII, right?’ But all I could say was ‘I don’t really know.’ It was really awkward.” Senior engineer, Yong Min Ha, simply avoided speaking to his family about work completely. “I love my wife and my adorable kids. But I just never told them about my job from the beginning. Haha,” he said humorously. Outside of family inquiries, the team members had to take discuss the S III’s progress with people outside of the team through verbal arrangements only—meaning, no pictures or drawings of any sorts were used. This made it especially difficult when the team had to present prototypes to partners and suppliers. “Because we were only permitted to see the products and others weren’t. We had to explain the GALAXY S III with all sorts of words. The Procurement Department had to set a price for the GALAXY S III and purchase the materials based on our verbal explanations. It was hard for everyone I guess. Hahaha,” Byung Joon Lee explained.

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Published by: VR-Zone

“You always want Chrome to look great, no matter what device you’re using. Apple recently announced a new laptop with a Retina high-resolution screen, and we’re committed to polishing Chrome until it shines on that machine.” The 15’’ MacBook Pro with Retina display announced at WWDC will boast a 2880 x 1800 resolution. Hence, Google is showing a lot of love for Apple’s product, but will users with regular 1080P monitors reap any benefits from the Chrome development team’s effort? During the prototype building stage, the team had to make three different prototypes in a given time frame to avoid design leaks. For instance, a team member working on the antenna design had to make several antennas, and all of which had to be different for each of the prototypes. “Generally, we manufacture the antenna based on the final design and request for authorization,” Senior Engineer Beoung Sun Lee said. “However, for security reasons, we had to make the antenna over and over. We had to come up with a new antenna every time the new design came out. To be honest, it was quite tiring and frustrating.” To cut down on the time outside of their workbenches, the team members often resorted to helicopters to get from one place to another. Talk about a roller coaster—helicopter rides in the S III team’s case—ride for these engineers. Apparently, some of the engineers at Samsung are well paid tech-secret agents.

Google Chome optimizes in preparation for Apple's Retina display MacBooks Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/google-chome-optimizes-inpreparation-for-apple-s-retina-display-macbooks/16279.html June 14th, 2012

The Google Chrome team reported Wednesday that, in light of the upcoming Retina display MacBook, they have began to revamp Chrome and optimizing it for high resolution displays.

Mini Battery Logger data indicates 13'' Retina display MacBook Pro Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/mini-battery-logger-dataindicates-13--retina-display-macbook-pro/16278.html June 14th, 2012

Apple announced at WWDC that the upcoming 15” MacBook Pros will feature Retina displays, but they did not mention anything about a 13” version with Retina displays. However, a recent data fetch from Mini Battery Logger reveals that a “MacBookPro10,2” sports a 6580 mAh battery. The coding scheme of the MacBook Pro has led to speculations that Apple will be introducing a 13’’ Retina display MacBook Pro alongside the 15’’ version.

Apple announced at WWDC that the upcoming 15” MacBook Pros will feature Retina displays, but they did not mention anything about a 13” version with Retina displays. However, a recent data fetch from Mini Battery Logger reveals that a “MacBookPro10,2” sports a 6580 mAh battery. The coding scheme of the MacBook Pro has led to speculations that Apple will be introducing a 13’’ Retina display MacBook Pro alongside the 15’’ version. The current 13’’ MacBook Pro has the name “MacBook Pro9,2” and the 15” is named “MacBookPro9,1.” If Apple is consistent with its current naming scheme then the MacBookPro10,2 may as well be the future 13’’ MacBook Pro with Retina display.

According to the report from Mini Battery Logger, the MacBookPro10,2 has a 6580 mAh battery—which is higher 6

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than the early 2011 13’’ MacBook Pro’s 5770 mAh. The increase in battery capacity is an indication of the performance bump in GPU and resolution requires that Apple integrate a higher capacity battery. If the confirmed 15’’ MacBook Pro’s GeForce 650M holds true and becomes available in the 13’’, then the data gathered by Mini Battery Logger does correlate to another version of a Retina display MacBook Pro.

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Google becomes a founding member of Ads Integrity Alliance Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/google-becomes-a-foundingmember-of-ads-integrity-alliance/16276.html June 14th, 2012

Please note that there are no conclusive evidences that the data gathered by Mini Battery Logger is legitimate.

LulzSec's Ryan Cleary indicted in U.S. court Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/lulzsec-s-ryan-cleary-indicted-inu.s.-court/16277.html June 14th, 2012

Google announced late yesterday that it is now a part of the Ads Integrity Alliance, a partnership among some of the web’s largest presence to fight bad ads.

Ryan Cleary, a 20-year-old British citizen, was indicted by a jury in Los Angles on Tuesday on charges of hacking into websites of Sony, Fox, and PBS.

Google announced late yesterday that it is now a part of the Ads Integrity Alliance, a partnership among some of the web’s largest presence to fight bad ads.

Ryan Cleary, a 20-year-old British citizen, was indicted by a jury in Los Angles on Tuesday on charges of hacking into websites of Sony, Fox, and PBS. Cleary’s group, LulzSec, is accused of obtaining confidential information, defacing websites, and server attacks using compromised computers—or, “botnet.” The FBI says that Cleary’s actions have negatively impacted a large number of businesses. An FBI spokeswoman states that: "Cleary is a skilled hacker. He controlled his own botnet, employed sophisticated methods and his broad geographic scope affected a large number of businesses and individuals." LulzSec is an affiliate and/or have some connections to the hacktivist group “Anonymous”—which has been active in India in recent news. According to the Chicago Tribune, LulzSec initially targeted organizations that supports internet censorship, but later expanded their reach to Scientology and global baking system. The FBI states that they would let overseas authorities’ prosecution against Cleary “take its course” before they seek to extradite Cleary in the U.S. A U.K.’s court date for Cleary is set for the 25th of June.

The search engine giant claims that it has been fighting spam contents and ads by removing millions of ads and thousands of advertisers from their ad service. “In 2011, Google alone disabled more than 130 million ads and 800,000 advertisers that violated our policies on our own and partners’ sites, such as ads that promote counterfeit goods and malware,” states the Official Google Blog. The alliance consists of—but not limited to—Google, AOL, Facebook, Twitter, and IAB. According to Google, the alliance aims to share certain information with each other, and create industry-wide policies and best practices for ads and their creators. Google believes that their involvement in the Ads Integrity Alliance reflects their desire to “put the world’s information at [user’s] fingertips.” Internet spam is destroying the integrity of the web and Google thinks that “the web is worth fighting for, which is why [they] strongly support the Ads Integrity Alliance’s efforts to tackle bad actors who seek to damage it.”

Sony Xperia miro won't amaze you, but it may be free with contract Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/sony-xperia-miro-won-t-amaze-youbut-it-may-be-free-with-contract/16275.html

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Published by: VR-Zone

Memory: 512 MB RAM, 4 GB internal storage Camera: 5 MP rear with LED flash Battery: 1500 mAh

Budget conscious smartphone consumers now have another option with the addition of the Sony Xperia miro to a long list of mid-range Android devices. It’s true that that Sony currently does not have a flagship iPhone-killer like the Samsung Galaxy SIII or an HTC One X, and it doesn’t seem like Sony intend to release a spec’d out Android phone for the time being.

OS: Android 4.0 ICS

Budget conscious smartphone consumers now have another option with the addition of the Sony Xperia miro to a long list of mid-range Android devices. It’s true that that Sony currently does not have a flagship iPhone-killer like the Samsung Galaxy SIII or an HTC One X, and it doesn’t seem like Sony intend to release a spec’d out Android phone for the time being.

Source: sonymobile.com Reference: gsmarena.com

Phone enthusiasts may not find anything worth raving about with respect to the miro, and it would seem so. The phone comes with a Qualcomm MSM7225A single core processor which may limit its usability when it comes to online contents such as flash videos or HD videos. Aside from the lack lustered CPU, everything else about the phone screams “free with a two year contract.” Specs: Display: 320 x 480 LED backlit @ 165ppi CPU: 800MHz Qualcomm MSM7225A single core

The Xperia miro is expected to hit the shelf later in the third quarter of this year. Staying true to it's pop culture-esque values, Sony will be releasing the Xperia miro in a variety of colors.

ZOTAC GTX 670 TwinCooler Pictured Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/zotac-gtx-670-twincoolerpictured/16273.html June 14th, 2012

NVIDIA not only disturbed the performance-thru-extreme GPU segments of AMD with the GeForce GTX 670, but also rubbed salt on its wounds with an insultingly compact-yetefficient PCB design of its reference design board. One of its bigger board partners, ZOTAC, is ready with a customdesign graphics card that keeps in tune with this design principle, the GTX 670 TwinCooler. NVIDIA not only disturbed the performance-thru-extreme GPU segments of AMD with the GeForce GTX 670, but also rub salt on its wounds with an insultingly simple yet efficient compact PCB design of its reference design board. One of its bigger board partners, ZOTAC, is ready with a customdesign graphics card that keeps in tune with this design principle, the GTX 670 TwinCooler.

GPU: Adreno 200 Dimensions: 113 x 59.4 x 9.9mm Weight: 110g

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Published by: VR-Zone

back plating surfaced, and this week we have some amazing pictures of a fully assembled iPhone 5. How people find the time to create realistic images to add fuel to the wildfire of rumors about the iPhone 5 never cease to amaze us. Last week pictures and videos of the iPhone 5’s back plating surfaced, and this week we have some amazing pictures of a fully assembled iPhone 5. Without further ado, here are some pictures courtesy of Flickr user Martin uit Utrecht, some talented person(s), and Rhinoceros 3D . Pictured above, the ZOTAC GTX 670 TwinCooler (model no. ZTGTX670-2GD5TCR001/ZT-60305-10P) is really short - about 60 mm shorter than NVIDIA reference design. The cooling assembly is ZOTAC's in-house design. The cooler uses two dense aluminum fin stacks, to which heat is conveyed by copper heat pipes that make direct contact with the GPU. The two are ventilated by an 80 mm fan, each. The cooler makes the card a tiny bit thicker than what two expansion slots allow, although it shouldn't eat up the third expansion slot.

The ZOTAC GTX 670 TwinCooler, despite its compact size, packs factory-overclocked speeds. Its core (base) is clocked at 954 MHz (vs. 915 MHz reference), with a GPU Boost frequency of 1033 MHz (vs. 980 MHz reference), and surprisingly, a memory speed of 6208 MHz (vs. 6008 MHz reference, a frequency most manufacturers don't tinker with). The card packs 2 GB of GDDR5 memory across a 256-bit wide memory interface. The 28 nm GK104 silicon is configured to have 1344 CUDA cores, 112 TMUs, and 32 ROPs. The card draws power from two 6-pin PCIe power connectors. It supports 3-way SLI. Display outputs include two DVI, and one each of HDMI and DisplayPort connectors. ZOTAC plans to launch the card worldwide, on the 20th of June. Prices vary greatly by market.

What a fully assembled iPhone 5 may look like Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/what-a-fully-assembled-iphone-5may-look-like/16274.html June 14th, 2012

How people find the time to create realistic images to add fuel to the wildfire of rumors about the iPhone 5 never cease to amaze us. Last week pictures and videos of the iPhone 5’s 9

June 14th, 2012

Prolimatech Intros Black Series Genesis CPU Heatsink Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/prolimatech-intros-black-seriesgenesis-cpu-heatsink/16272.html June 14th, 2012

Published by: VR-Zone

At its base, six nickel-plated copper heat pipes make indirect contact with the CPU. The six then convey heat to each of the two aluminum fin towers, where under the air-flow of 120 mm or 140 mm fans, heat is dissipated. The perpendicular tower focuses on cooling the CPU, with most of its exhaust making its way out of the case, while the parallel tower could end up cooling other components on the motherboard such as memory and VRM, under its air-flow.

Wacky, high-end heatsink designer Prolimatech announced a new black variant of its Genesis CPU heatsink, famed for its asymmetric design. The new Black Series Genesis has been launched exclusively through a certain European retailer, and will be generally available soon. Wacky, high-end heatsink designer Prolimatech announced a new black variant of its Genesis CPU heatsink, famed for its asymmetric design. The new Black Series Genesis has been launched exclusively through a certain European retailer, and will be generally available soon.

The new Black Series Genesis, apart from its matteblack anodised aluminum fins, is identical to the original, launched back in February, 2011. It is a large category CPU heatsink, which uses a dual aluminum fin tower design, except that while one of its fin towers is arranged perpendicular to the plane of the motherboard (like most tower-type heatsinks), the other one is arranged parallel to that plane (like most top-flow heatsinks).

The Black Series Genesis supports a full range of CPU socket types, including LGA2011, LGA1155/LGA1156, LGA1366, LGA775; AM3+/AM3/AM2+/AM2, FM2/FM1; although you should ensure your case and motherboard have just enough room for it. Apart from the heatsink itself, major parts of the mounting kit are black.

As mentioned earlier, the Black Series Genesis from Prolimatech, is launched exclusively by a European retailer, Overclockers UK. It is priced at ÂŁ59.90 (US $93, SG $119). It will be generally available a little later.

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Published by: VR-Zone

may mark the end of a very faithful exploit, the loss of Jailbreakme doesn't signal any doom for the jailbreaking community.

Apple probably can't stop June 21 launch of Samsung Galaxy S III Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/apple-probably-can-t-stop-june-21launch-of-samsung-galaxy-s-iii/16271.html June 14th, 2012

Famed JailbreakMe exploit put to rest in iOS 6 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/famed-jailbreakme-exploit-put-torest-in-ios-6/16270.html June 14th, 2012

Last Friday, Apple's lawyers were threatening to sic a temporary restraining order on Samsung's Galaxy S III to stop the device from going on sale on June 21, its launch date. Now that is hardly likely to happen.

After two years, Apple has finally managed to patch the bug behind the famed 'JailbreakMe' exploit. This occurs less than a year after the hacker responsible for discovering the exploit, 'Comex', left jailbreaking for an internship at Apple.

Last Friday, Apple's lawyers were threatening to file a temporary restraining order on Samsung's Galaxy S III to stop the device from going on sale on June 21, its launch date. Now that is hardly likely to happen.

After two years, Apple has finally managed to patch the bug behind the famed 'JailbreakMe' exploit. This occurs less than a year after the hacker responsible for discovering the exploit, 'Comex', left jailbreaking for an internship at Apple.

Among the other Apple vs. Samsung cases that are going on right now in the United States, Apple was hoping that Judge Lucy Koh would make a preliminary injunction request for the Samsung Halaxy S III, to add to an existing pile of similar requests which Apple has made for Samsung products.

The well-guarded JailbreakMe exploit was the first jailbreak that could be used with the iPad 2, and has lived unfettered for two years’ time. The exploit was particularly loved for its ease and simplicity - the procedure of jailbreaking a device using it involved simply visiting a website in the iOS browser, and a few seconds later, the process was done. But now, in iOS 6, the exploit has finally been patched. Jailbreaker pod2g notes via Twitter "R.I.P. the exploit used by developers to root the device. Found by @comex in 2010. A 2 years old bug closed with iOS 6." Obviously, the immediate suspicion in everyone's mind is that Comex revealed the bug to Apple now that he is working for them. There isn't any proof of that, but it's certainly a possibility. As disappointing as this may be, the good news is that the kernel bug exploit couldn't be used for general release jailbreaks, as it required an iOS developer account. Therefore, any jailbreaks currently being developed for iOS 6 (like the one announced by iPhone Dev Team's Musclenerd) should not be affected by the patch. Jailbreakers tend to have their own stock of secret exploits in the case that Apple destroys one of them. So, while it

But, according to a report by Reuters, Judge Koh ruled that the requests would "overload her calendar". A date of July 30 has already been set for the trial on the previous Galaxy cases. While Apple could still theoretically request a ban for a separate hearing date, it most likely won't be able to do so before the June 21 launch of the Galaxy S III in the U.S. It's no secret that Apple thinks Samsung products are generally shameless ripoffs of their own. In the case of the Samsung Galaxy S III, a Samsung lawyer commented that

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Apple is only trying to "prevent a phone from getting to the public that is better than Apple's in many, many respects." "U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh in San Jose, California, effectively dashed Apple's hopes of stopping the launch of Samsung Electronics Co Ltd's new Galaxy S III smartphone, which also runs on Android. Koh had said Apple's push to get a court order blocking the June 21 launch would overload her calendar… Koh last week said Apple could ask for a temporary restraining order against the Galaxy S III phone, but that would likely delay the trial over a Galaxy tablet and other smartphones. In her order on Monday, the judge said Apple would have to request a new hearing date if it wanted to stop sales of the Galaxy S III phone. That likely would not take place before the phone's scheduled launch. Apple has not said what its next move will be." -Reuters

Justice Department Investigating Cable Providers, Net Neutrality Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/justice-department-investigatingcable-providers-net-neutrality/16269.html June 14th, 2012

The US Justice Department is looking into antitrust claims against various cable companies throughout the US to find out if they've been acting anticompetitively when it comes to the distribution of online video through their networks. The U.S. Justice Department has begun conducting a large, wide-ranging antitrust investigation into cable companies and whether or not they are attempting to stifle upcoming competition from online video providers. Officials have spoken to several online companies, including Netflix and Hulu, as well as cable providers like Comcast and Time Warner Cable, about issues such as data caps. No comment was given about the investigation. The problem arises from the fact that cable companies, which provide bundles of television channels as well as highspeed internet access, are having their traditional channel bundles as well as video rental on demand services bypassed by customers using online services such as Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon. Companies, having invested billions of dollars into the construction and maintenance of their networks, have little to no incentive to get out of the business of providing television channels, and major entertainment groups with multiple television stations are highly invested in the current model of television viewing, because by requiring cable companies to license packages of channels rather than picking individual channels, they ensure that all their channels, no matter how popular, make it into homes, and are able to receive fees for stations that would otherwise wither and die from lack of viewership. The probe from the Justice Department serves as a highlight into how shifts in patterns of television viewership are shaking and reverberating through the television entertainment industry.

Published by: VR-Zone

The Justice Department has already shaken the eBook publishing industry with a lawsuit that alleges publishers colluded with Apple to fix prices on eBooks, rather than letting the market set the prices. Several publishers settled in April, but Apple and the remaining publishers continue to fight the suit. In the cable probe, the Justice Department is taking a close look at data caps that have been used by TV providers like Comcast and Time Warner have used to try and deal with the rapid growth of online video traffic. The limits are needed, the companies claim, in order to stop heavy users from overwhelming their networks. Online video providers like Netflix, however, have accused cable companies of using the limits at stopping consumers from dropping their television services and switching completely to online video services. There is also concern that the cable companies’ online video offerings, many of which have begun service in just the past year, will get an unfair advantage by not affecting data cap limits or receiving priority traffic on the networks. Comcast did nothing to alleviate those accusations when they announced in March that its Xfinity app on the Xbox 360 would not be counted against their subscribers’ data caps, unlike every other video service available on the system. Because of this announcement, the Justice Department is examining whether or not Comcast violated legal requirements made of the company in 2011 in order for them to secure approval for the takeover of NBCUniversal. Under those legal terms, Comcast cannot “unreasonably discriminate” against other companies transmitting data over its network or treat its own content differently than it treats theirs. Comcast claims that they have not, in fact, violated those requirements, because they are not treating data from the Internet any differently; they are claiming that they have a loophole in that Xfinity uses data only from Comcast’s internal network, not the public Internet. “We have consistently treated all video carried over the public Internet the same whether it comes from our sites or anywhere else on the public Internet,” the company said. Another issue being investigated are paywalls around certain content providers that require users to have an active cable subscription, such as ESPN’s WatchESPN service, which can only be accessed in mobile form after entering your cable subscription details. The Justice Department is investigating whether these paywalls are anticompetitive, as well as whether contracts signed by providers and entertainment groups are anti-competitive by requiring subscribers to purchase packages of channels, whether or not they actually watch those channels.

CISPA Being Pushed By US Senate Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/cispa-being-pushed-by-ussenate/16268.html June 14th, 2012

The controversial successor to SOPA and PIPA is being pushed by leadership in the Senate, and may soon make progress towards the President's desk.

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Remember SOPA and PIPA, the pieces of legislation that sought to protect copyright by destroying fundamental ideas of how the Internet functions? There’s another piece of legislation, very similar in nature, and seeking to do the same things that SOPA and PIPA did making its way through the U.S. Senate. Currently the legislation, known as CISPA, is stalled on Capitol Hill, but recently there were two key indicators that progress would begin on working through the bill soon. The first indicator was a statement made by Senator Harry Reid, in which he essentially promised action on the various cybersecurity bills floating through the Senate. He pushed forward the controversial bill, reportedly stating that “I [have] put everyone on notice: We are going to move to this bill at the earliest possible date,” meaning that the Democratic Party, currently in control of the Senate, is in fear of losing their position at the end of this election year and is looking to push legislation through before the election. The second indicator is news that has surfaced regarding a potential compromise in the works regarding an issue that has kept the versions in the House and the Senate from being reconcilable, that issue being standards. The Senate bill includes mandatory standards, which the proponents in the Senate claim is necessary for the protection of the Internet infrastructure in the U.S., but to members of the House, controlled by the Republican Party, mandatory standards are a burden on business that will stifle and crush economic growth in the sector. Senator Lindsey Graham, however, said in an interview that a compromise is being drafted between the two groups, which would mean progress on the bill can be made. All of this is happening on Congressional time scales, so don’t expect anything to happen any time soon, but it looks like their will soon be another bill for the various Internet communities to go to war against.

ICANN Preparing To Release New Domains Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/icann-preparing-to-release-newdomains/16265.html June 14th, 2012

After the slow trickle of new domains over the past decade, ICANN is set to open the floodgates next year, with hundreds of new domains set for approval in 2013.

Published by: VR-Zone

run their own domain, without worrying if a certain address has been used already. More than 1,900 applications have already been received, and not just for business names; some of the applications include city-based domains like .NYC or .berlin, industryspecific domains like .cars, and even domains based on web-slang. With so many applications, there are, of course, some duplicates; .africa and .eco have both had at least two applications put in for them, but even if only 10% of the current applications go live next year, the number of domains on the Internet will double. This is not the first time that new domains have been added; domains such as .info and .biz were added previously in 2000 and 2004, but not all of the domains added then have been successful or widely adopted. Where .biz and .info took off, relatively speaking, .museum and .coop have remained largely unused. The difference this time is that there will be hundreds of new domains added, rather than just a few. Another difference is that those whose applications are approved will have control over the entire domain. They will decide who can and cannot receive an address on that domain, as well as how much to charge for that address. The potential returns on these investments have garnered some serious financial backing for some of the groups. A start-up company called Donuts Inc, for example, has claimed to have raised roughly $100 million to pay for the registration fees for 307 domains and create the infrastructure required to run those domains. The problem, however, is the same problem that plagued the previous expansions. That problem, namely, is consumer awareness and understanding. The .com domain has remained dominant for so long partly because it was so widely adopted and is used so frequently that it is what most users immediately think of when thinking about an internet address, and it will most likely remain the dominant domain. Also, smaller companies may have a harder time marketing their domains, whereas a company like Microsoft, with brand recognition and a loyal customer base, will see much better returns and traffic on their domains. We’ll keep our eyes open and report on any interesting developments as ICANN prepares to unleash a torrent of new domains on the Internet.

Analysts like Apple's WWDC unveil, but disappointed there was not more Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/analysts-like-apple-s-wwdc-unveilbut-disappointed-there-was-not-more/16264.html June 14th, 2012

Next year, the Internet will play host to a group of new domains. Familiar domains, such as .com and .net, will become less prevalent as new domains open up for various uses. ICANN, the organization that oversees the DNS services and addressing system for the Internet, plans to give out new domains to any organization which can afford a registration fee of $185,000. This means that companies like Microsoft, Coca Cola, Nike, cities like New York and London, or any other group that can come up with the registration fee can

Analysts have responded predominantly positively to Apple's new software and hardware lineup unveiled at the Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) in Moscone West, San Francisco, but the lack of surprises has caused some concerns. 13

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Analysts have responded predominantly positively to Apple's new software and hardware lineup unveiled at the Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) in Moscone West, San Francisco, but the lack of surprises has caused some concerns. Philip Elmer-Dewitt at Fortune collected a number of analyst comments on Apple's keynote address, with the majority of them praising the new features of iOS, but many expressing disappointment at the lack of hardware launches. Bill Shope from Goldman Sachs said that the addition of Siri for the new iPad will help with the momentum it expects to continue this quarter, while FaceTime running over a mobile connection will strengthen Apple's platform against rivals on the market. He expressed scepticism about Apple's need to develop its own Maps app, but said that Siri integration will help with competitiveness.

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disappointed by the lack of hardware products, and he said investors “likely expected more.” Alex Gauna at JMP said the software was as forecast, but said the lack of surprises caused stocks to fall, with particular disappointment about the lack of Apple TV announcements. The general consensus is that what Apple delivered is good, but more was expected or desired, which leads to the question if “good” is good enough. This is the first WWDC since the passing of Apple co-founder and former CEO Steve Jobs - and it shows.

ARCTIC Freezer i30 CPU Cooler Review Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/arctic-freezer-i30-cpu-coolerreview/16263.html

Mark Moskowitz from J.P. Morgan noted three key software-driven services in Apple's announcement: Passbook, Maps and FaceTime over a mobile network. He believes this will strengthen things for the iPhone 5 launch, with Passbook considered a precusor to a mobile payment service from Apple that the financial firm calls “iPay.”

June 14th, 2012

A few weeks ago we tested and reviewed one of the most basic CPU coolers ARCTIC offers at this point of time, the Alpine 11 PLUS, which proved capable of satisfying basic user needs. Today however we are going to have a look at the nemesis of the Alpine 11 PLUS; the large tower CPU cooler we have for review today listens to the name Freezer i30 and is the largest and most expensive Intel CPU cooler ARCTIC currently produces. A few weeks ago we tested and reviewed one of the most basic CPU coolers ARCTIC offers at this point of time, the Alpine 11 PLUS, which proved capable of satisfying basic user needs. Today however we are going to have a look at the nemesis of the Alpine 11 PLUS; the large tower CPU cooler we have for review today listens to the name Freezer i30 and is the largest and most expensive Intel CPU cooler ARCTIC currently produces. Max. Cooling Capacity Heatpipe Gene Munster from Piper Jaffray commented on Apple's move to “meaningfully differentiate iOS from Android.” It said the partnership with Facebook makes the iPhone the de-facto Facebook phone and Google is unlikely to have a similar partnership. He expects Apple to ink deals with other firms in order to further get rid of Google's presence on the iPhone. Chris Whitmore from Deutsche Bank praised the increasing “stickiness” of the iOS and Mac platforms, but indicated that the announcements were in-line with expectations. Ben Reitzes from Barclay said that software was ahead of expectations, but he was surprised not to see Apple introduce the ability to make apps for Apple TV. He was also

Heatsink Material Fan (mm)

Airflow Bearing Noise Level Current, Voltage Dimensions (Product) Net Weight Limited Warranty Dimensions (Packaging)

320 Watts Direct-Touch Ø 8 mm x 4 (double-sided) Aluminum fins x 48, thickness: 0.5 mm ARCTIC F12 PWM: 120 mm, 400 – 1,350 RPM (PWM controlled) 74 CFM / 125.7 m³/h Fluid Dynamic Bearing 0.3 Sone (@1,350 RPM) 0.22A / 3.5 - 12V 100 (L) x 139 (W) x 161 (H) mm 0.9 kg 6 years 123 (L) x 161 (W) x 187 (H) mm 14

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itemnumber UPC Gross Weight

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UCACO-FI30001-GB 0872767005051 1.4 kg

Apple unveils Apple Design Award winners at WWDC

around various levels in order to help Swampy the Alligator have a shower. It won one of the awards due to its personality, consistent narrative, vibrant graphics, intuitive controls, simple game mechanics, and great sountrack. Its optimisation with iOS and integration with various iOS features was another selling point.

Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/apple-unveils-apple-design-awardwinners-at-wwdc/16262.html June 14th, 2012

Apple has announced the Apple Design Award winners at the Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) in Moscone West, San Francisco. Out of over half a million apps across the iPhone, iPad, and Mac, Apple selected just a handful which it believed deserved special mention at its event.

Winners in the iPhone Developer Showcase include Jetpack Joyride by Halfbrick Studios, Where's My Water by Disney, and National Parks by National Geographic, by none other than the National Geographic Society.

National Parks by National Geographic is an informational app, providing details about popular parks throughout the United States. It was chosen for its strong design, attention to detail, high production quality, subtle and compelling animations and transitions, beautiful photo galleries, and photo tips. Maps integration was another factor in its win.

Jetpack Joyride is a game that lets players fly around platform levels in a variety of jetbacks, collecting coins along the way. Apple said it was one of the winners because “it uses iOS graphics and audio frameworks extensively to enable really fun graphics, it's optimized for Retina Display on iPad and iPhone, has a great soundtrack, delivers outstanding responsiveness and performance, and integrates with Game Center, In-App Purchase, Facebook and Twitter.” Basically it shows off the iPhone and iOS at its best.

Winners in the iPad Developer Showcase include Bobo Explores Light by Game Collage LLC, DM1 – The Drum Machine by Fingerlab, and Paper by FiftyThree, by FiftyThree Inc. Where's My Water is another game, but this time a physics-based puzzle where players help navigate water 15

June 14th, 2012

Published by: VR-Zone

Bobo Explores Light is an educational app that teaches basic scientific concepts relating to light, such as lasers, reflection, refraction, photosynthesis and bioluminescence, all with the use of experimentation, self-driven discovery and humour. Apple selected it because it is “state-of-the-art” and for making learning fun compared to more traditional digital textbooks.

Winners in the Mac Developer Showcase include Deus Ex: Human Evolution – Ultimate Edition by Feral Interactive Ltd, Limbo by Playdead Aps, and Sketch by Bohemian Coding.

DM1 is, as its extended name suggests, a drum machine app that lets users turn their iPad into a virtual sound engine. It won an award for its “tight integration with iOS audio frameworks,” in addition to its high performance, rich feature set, finely-tuned interface, and beautiful visual design.

Paper by FiftyThree is a creativity app that lets users draw sketches, diagrams, and illustrations in a way that makes them look high quality. Apple picked it for its excellent concept and execution, the feeling it gives when people draw with it for the first time, its innovative tools and rendering style, and the fact that it takes full advantage of the Retina Display to create the illusion of drawing on real paper.

The Deux Ex title is a cyberpunk-themed action role-playing game available on OS X. It was selected for its compelling and immersive gameplay, great graphics, and enormous environments. Apple called it “one of the … most impressive AAA games on the Mac App Store.”

Limbo is a side-scrolling puzzle adventure for OS X, winning an Apple Design Award for its minimal UI, unique and compelling graphics, strong narrative, fluid movements, simple controls, and strong integration with OS X graphics and audio technology.

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Published by: VR-Zone

unique interactivity, learning and gameplay, and touted it as “a great example of the results students can produce on iOS.”

Sketch is a professional vector graphics app for OS X, chosen for its integration with OS X and powerful design capabilities, including “non-destructive boolean operations on curves and objects.”

Qihoo 360's AK 47 to gun down competitors with retina display Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/qihoo-360-s-ak-47-to-gun-downcompetitors-with-retina-display/16261.html June 14th, 2012

Apple also selected two winners in its Student Developer Showcase: daWindci by Reality Twist GmbH, Mimimi Productions and Little Star by BiBoBox Studio. The former is a 3D project created by students at Mediadesign Highschool of Applied Sciences in Munich, winning for its clever design, simple gameplay, integration with iOS and 3D visuals.

If you think Apple is one of the few big name companies using retina displays in their products, you’re right—but a smaller-scale Chinese software company will feature the retina display in their upcoming “AK 47” smartphone also.

Little Star is a 30-page interactive children's book designed and developed by students at Dalian Nationalities University in China. Apple selected it for its beautiful illustrations and

If you think Apple is one of the few big name companies using retina displays in their products, you’re right—but a smaller-scale Chinese software company will feature the retina display in their upcoming “AK 47” smartphone also. 17

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Qihoo 360, mainly known for their antivirus and web browser software, will be producing a budget smartphone that sports some relatively good specs. No, this is not an iPhone knock off, because it’s not called the “i”AK 47 smartphone (just AK 47). This is the first “budget retina Android smartphone” that I’ve heard of, there may be others but I have yet to come across it. The official name of the phone is not known, and AK 47 is what Qihoo 360’s chairman, Zhou HongYi, calls it. Can this budget AK 47 retina smartphone gun down competing devices?

Tim Cook says 2013 Mac Pro will recieve "revolutionary features" Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/tim-cook-says-2013-mac-pro-willrecieve-revolutionary-features-/16260.html June 14th, 2012

Published by: VR-Zone

but a slight speed boost to the 12 cores Xeon model has been implemented recently.

Windows 8 is IT and developers friendly Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/windows-8-is-it-and-developersfriendly/16259.html June 14th, 2012

In Microsoft’s keynote at the TechEd conference in Orlando, speakers demonstrated Windows 8’s IT/developer-friendly features such as built-in capability to run Windows 8 and 7 side by side at the same time.

Apple has not said much—actually, they didn’t say anything at all—about their Mac Pro line for the last two years, but after the WWDC on Monday, Tim Cook has given an official announcement to the future of the Mac Pro. Apple has not said much—actually, they didn’t say anything at all—about their Mac Pro line for the last two years, but after the WWDC on Monday, Tim Cook has given an official announcement to the future of the Mac Pro. In an email to inquirers, Cook states that Apple is “working on something really great for later next year [and other] revolutionary features” for the Mac Pro’s 2013 update. Here’s the full email: Thanks for your email. Our Pro customers like you are really important to us. Although we didn’t have a chance to talk about a new Mac Pro at today’s event, don’t worry as we’re working on something really great for later next year. We also updated the current model today. We’ve been continuing to update Final Cut Pro X with revolutionary pro features like industry leading multi-cam support and we just updated Aperture with incredible new image adjustment features. We also announced a MacBook Pro with a Retina Display that is a great solution for many pros. Tim There have been circulating rumors that Apple is putting an end to the Mac Pro line since it’s been two years since there has been any major update. However, Cook’s announcement solidifies Apple’s stance on the future of the Mac Pro. Any spectacular hardware or design update remains to be seen,

In Microsoft’s keynote at the TechEd conference in Orlando, speakers demonstrated Windows 8’s IT/developer-friendly features such as built-in capability to run Windows 8 and 7 side by side at the same time. Linda Averett, leader of Microsoft’s developer experience team, demonstrated Windows 8’s hypervisor software running a virtual instance of Windows 7. She said that the built in virtual software enables “IT pros [to] check out how things work in different versions.” “I find it exceedingly convenient,” she added. The virtual instance of Windows 7 can also run side by side with Windows 8 in a split screen mode. This feature is especially useful for IT and developers who want to compare how a software/app runs on different versions of Windows at the same time. Adding to Averett’s claim of Windows 8 flexibility, she demonstrated how a user customized version of Windows 8 can also be booted from a USB drive. It seems like Microsoft is aiming to entice developers to check out their new platform by making it easier for them to troubleshoot and develop applications in a virtual environment. However, will these “IT & developersfriendly” features equate to regular consumers’ early adoption of Windows 8?

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AMD AFDS Seattle: Trinity follow-on, Kaveri, to have true shared memory Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/amd-afds-seattle-trinity-follow-onkaveri-to-have-true-shared-memory/16258.html June 14th, 2012

AMD Fusion Developer Summit has just started in Seattle, here are some of the initial news, with more to follow While one can debate the performance pros and cons of the Trinity APU, its tight level of CPU-GPU integration is a fact, including the shared memory controller and such. However, even more is coming, as seen on the keynote presentation two hours ago.

Published by: VR-Zone June 14th, 2012

During its WWDC announcements yesterday, Apple made an announcement regarding iOS' voice assistant 'Siri' which, along with many other iOS features, has seen upgrades in iOS 6. According to the company, Siri voice assistance will be added to a number of cars. During its WWDC announcements yesterday, Apple made an announcement regarding iOS' voice assistant 'Siri' which, along with many other iOS features, has seen upgrades in iOS 6. According to the company, Siri voice assistance will be added to a number of cars. This "Eyes Free" system will make it much easier and safer to do a lot of the things which usually make cell phones and driving a bad combination.

The 2013 Trinity follow-on, Kaveri, will have true shared, unified address space between the CPU and GPU, with common user calls and sharing of data between them. This will eliminate the data copying or wasted bandwith having to reference it indirectly, and come a step forward in integrating the two further. It's supposed to help in both 3D graphics and the compute. After the show, a source confirmed that Kaveri will be a true Southern Islands GCN part in the GPU department, without any remnants of the HD6XXX VLIW-4 architecture, and that the Steamroller CPU core parts there would solve a couple of remaining major drawbacks of the Piledriver architecture. Whether it includes - finally - each core getting its own FPU and instruction scheduler, or something else like common L3 cache for CPU and GPU, non existent till now, was not answered. The point is, Intel's Haswell desktop with supposedly vastly improved graphics (GT3, 40EUs and 64MB cache) - but likely no such high level enhancement like true shared memory - will be out at the same time. So, getting out Kaveri as early as possible should be an imperative for the AMD APU time. And, yes, since the sockets are changed everytime, how about quad memory channel option this time, as DDR4 support is too early then, yet more bandwidth is needed for the GPU at least?

Siri and cars - "Eyes Free" technology to make cell phones and driving a safer combination Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/siri-and-cars--eyes-free-technologyto-make-cell-phones-and-driving-a-safer-combination/16256.html

"Through the voice command button on your steering wheel, you'll be able to ask Siri questions without taking your eyes off the road," said Apple on its iOS 6 website. In fact, in order to even further prevent any visual distractions, the Eyes Free system will prevent the iOS device from lighting up when the feature is being used. The screen will stay dark, as the only thing needed to interact with it will be voice. "With the Eyes Free feature, ask Siri to call people, select and play music, hear and compose text messages, use Maps and get directions, read your notifications, find calendar information, add reminders, and more," said Apple. Apple's iOS chief Scott Forstall mentioned nine car manufactures taking part in the addition of Eyes Free technology to vehicles, including BMW, General Motors, Mercedes, Land Rover, Jaguar, Audi, Toyota, Chrysler, and Honda. This feature will presumably take advantage of another upgrade to the iOS software, which is the new Maps application by Apple. Apple is abandoning Google Maps in the new version of iOS, using their own application which will include turn-by-turn navigation guides with spoken directions, real time traffic information, and alternate route suggestions. This makes sense when considering controversy last year involving Apple's location-tracking on iOS devices. At the time, the company claimed that the collection of anonymous location data was taking place to create a "crowd-sourced traffic database" to be a part of a future "improved traffic service." 19

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Along with rumors about Apple's iTV, and Google's selfdriving vehicle, it seems that IT makers are at least partly turning their attention to improving conventional technology with the digital marvels of today. It is nice to see the experience of older inventions being improved and upgraded, rather than forgotten and replaced.

iOS 6.0 beta gets jailbroken on an A4 device Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/ios-6.0-beta-gets-jailbroken-on-ana4-device/16255.html June 14th, 2012

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it will come as pleasant news to these people that iOS 6 beta has already been jailbroken on at least one A4 device. Musclenerd of the iPhone Dev Team confirmed this on his Twitter, and also explained that many things, including the jailbreak app/tweak/mod store Cydia, are not yet working on the jailbroken iOS. This particular jailbreak is "tethered", meaning that a command must be sent to the modified device in order to boot it up, which requires that it be tethered to a computer, and often involves the use of command line procedures or batch files. It shouldn't be any surprise, therefore, that musclenerd also says that users should not expect an iOS 6 beta jailbreak release anytime soon. However, the news should still be encouraging to interested users, as it shows that progress is being made towards a more sufficient jailbreak even now while iOS 6 is still in its beta stage.

Jailbreaker ‘musclenerd’ announced via Twitter that he had jailbroken his A4 iPod touch, running iOS 6 beta. The jailbreak is premature, and tethered. A release should not be expected in the near future. Jailbreaker ‘musclenerd’ announced via Twitter that he had jailbroken his A4 iPod touch, running iOS 6 beta. The jailbreak is premature, and tethered. A release should not be expected in the near future. This year’s WWDC has been one of the most exciting of all, perhaps second behind the 2007 WWDC which was held prior to the release of the original iPhone, and saw 5,000 attendees. Not only has this WDDC seen the announcement of upgrades to Apple's entire notebook line, but a major new entry into Apple's iOS operating system, iOS 6.

Google faces £500,000 fine if found guilty of violating UK's data protection laws by VR-Zone.com Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/google-faces-500-000-fine-if-foundguilty-of-violating-uk-s-data-protection-laws/16257.html June 14th, 2012

In the midst of the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) investigation of Google in the U.S., UK's Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) is also investigating possible cover up of unauthorized data capture by Google’s Street View cars in 2010.

Now, while still in its beta stage, the iOS 6 software has already been jailbroken. Jailbreaking is a process by which users circumvent the limitations of iOS by using a custom kernel, and thereby gain root access to the device's file system. This gives users the ability to install themes, apps, tweaks, and other minor/ major modifications to the iOS software. Jailbreaking has been seen as a necessity to even soft-core modders and customization enthusiasts, as iOS has been a notoriously closed and unchangeable system. But many new features are being introduced now which, at least for some, will negate the very need to jailbreak. This is a good thing, since jailbreaking can be a difficult process, and voids device warranties. But regardless, there will still be a good crowd who wants more access to their devices than Apple will give them, and

In the midst of the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) investigation of Google in the U.S., UK's Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) is also investigating possible cover up of unauthorized data capture by Google’s Street View cars in 2010. According to guardian.co.uk, Google obtained highly private data that include email messages, browsing history, passwords, and even medical records of people in the UK— some, if not a lot, of the information were obtained without user’s consent. Google told the ICO in 2010 that the data gathered by the Street View cars were a mistake, and that Google personnel

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did not use the data or even bothered to look at it. However, on Tuesday the ICO officially began a new investigation. "During the course of our investigation we were specifically told by Google that it was a simple mistake and if the data was collected deliberately then it is clear that this is a different situation than was reported to us in April 2010," the ICO wrote to Google. Google’s spokeswoman states that Google will be “happy to answer the ICO’s questions,” and full cooperation is not out of the question. A backbreaking antitrust investigation by the FTC is in full swing in the U.S, and the regulatory attacks from different countries seem to just be starting for Google.

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VR-Zone.com | Tech News for the Geeks! VR-Zone | Stuff for the Geeks is a bi-weekly publication covering the latest gadgets and stuff for the geeks.

Verizon FiOS "wows" every man, woman, and child Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/verizon-fios-wows-every-manwoman-and-child/16319.html June 17th, 2012

June 17th, 2012

People looking into Samsung’s Series 5 laptops should take a look at the AMD series. While the 13’’ i5 Ivy-Bridge Series 5 will certainly outperform (clock for clock) the AMD platform in the CPU department, the refreshed 13’’ AMD Series 5 has the Radeon HD 7500G—which is much more attractive than an Intel HD 4000.

Why companies are choosing 6.18.2012 to make announcements is a mystery, and Verizon is also adding to that mystery by hopping onto the 6.18-bandwagon. On that day, Verizon (accompanying Microsoft’s and Nokia’s big announcements) will be making an announcement that may confirm their FiOS broadband service change. Why companies are choosing 6.18.2012 to make announcements is a mystery, and Verizon is adding to that mystery by hopping onto the 6.18-bandwagon. On that day, Verizon (accompanying Microsoft’s and Nokia’s big announcements) will be making an announcement, or rather a commencement for their FiOS broadband service change. Speculations of FiOS change in bandwidth packages have gone on for awhile now, and most likely Verizon will make an official announcement regarding those changes on Monday. Verizon will change their current highest package, among others, from 150 Mbps downstream to 300 Mbps. It is also speculated that Verizon will increase their current pricings along with the increase in bandwidth. A recently uploaded video to YouTube teases consumers with a semi apocalyptic blackout of all devices--which, within seconds come back on and “wowing” anyone that’s in front of a device connected to the internet. The video seems to imply that Verizon FiOS saved the world from the doldrums provided by competing ISPs. See for yourself.

AMD Samsung Series 5 laptop have more GPU power than Intel Series 5 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/amd-samsung-series-5-laptop-havemore-gpu-power-than-intel-series-5/16318.html

People looking into Samsung’s Series 5 laptops should take a look at the AMD series. While the 13’’ i5 Ivy-Bridge Series 5 will certainly outperform (clock for clock) the AMD platform in the CPU department, the refreshed 13’’ AMD Series 5 has the Radeon HD 7500G—which is much more attractive than an Intel HD 4000. Most average consumers will be content with a laptop that has an Intel HD 4000, but it may not get the job done for casual gamers who want to do multimedia intensive activities such as 3D gaming. Web contents such as flash videos are very CPU intensive, but many video games are CPU and GPU intensive—thus, Samsung may have done them self a favor by adding some more GPU horses to their Series 5 laptops. Not only does the 13’’ AMD Series 5 laptop have more GPU power, but it’s also cheaper. The Intel Core i5 Ivy Bridge’s premium comes at the expense of the graphical processing aspect. The 13’’ AMD version of the Series 5 is $100 cheaper than its Intel counterpart, and for $699 you can have a system that is balanced between CPU and GPU.

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Samsung SGH-T699 Android ICS slider phone to arrive on T-Mobile Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/samsung-sgh-t699-android-icsslider-phone-to-arrive-on-t-mobile/16317.html June 17th, 2012

A barrage of slider Android phones seem to be hitting consumers, and until people forsaken the QWERTY hard keypad like they did BlackBerrys, these slider devices will remain a part of manufacturers' to-do list.

A barrage of slider Android phones seem to be hitting consumers, and until people forsaken the QWERTY hard keypad like they did the BlackBerry, these slider devices will remain a part of manufacturer’s to-do list. T-Mobile and Samsung is working together to deliver the SGH-T699-an ICS slider device boasting a Qualcomm Snapdragon processor (not known if it’s an S3 or S4). Tmonews.com has confirmed that the SGH-T699 will have a 5 MP rear camera, Snapdragon processor, and Android ICS 4.0.4 out of the box. If T-Mobile is trying to bring back the “Sidekick” in a refined package, then the SGH-T699 may just do the job. People that are still using a T-Mobile Sidekick may have a reason to upgrade to an Android device now. Although, I doubt many people hung onto their nifty slider phone from the mid 2000’s.

Sprint-Motorola QWERTY slider ICS Android phone

Published by: VR-Zone June 17th, 2012

Sprint and Motorola may be teaming up to bring consumers a QWERTY slider Android phone. While Android 4.0 ICS aims to eliminate the need for a hard keypad, it doesn’t hurt to also have an ICS device with some solid buttons for those that don’t like to touch their screens. Sprint and Motorola may be teaming up to bring consumers a QWERTY slider Android phone. While Android 4.0 ICS aims to eliminate the need for a hard keypad, it doesn’t hurt to also have an ICS device with some solid buttons for those that don’t like to touch their screens. A picture alone doesn’t say much about the phone, but chances are the Sprint-Motorola slider phone is an entry to mid-range device. Several years ago the QWERTY Sidekick from Motorola seemed to dominate the hands of teens and young adults. Perhaps Sprint and Motorola is aiming to bring back the past.

From the screenshot, the phone shows the possibility that it’s running ICS—evident through the virtual buttons on the right side of the screen. It’s hard to gauge the size of the screen as there’s no reference objects in the picture, but it’s quite realistic to expect the screen to be 3.5-4.0’’. Hardware-wise, if the phone is running ICS, we can guess that a 1.0+GHz single or dual core CPU is humming under the hood, 4GB of internal storage for the ICS firmware, and at least 512MB RAM for minimal multitasking. For more discussion on this phone, click here.

CM9 Nightly build for Samsung Galaxy S III now available Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/cm9-nightly-build-for-samsunggalaxy-s-iii-now-available/16315.html June 17th, 2012

Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/sprint-motorola-qwerty-slider-icsandroid-phone/16316.html

If you’re a fan of CyanogenMod Android based ROMs and you own a Galaxy S III then there’s great news! An official 2

June 17th, 2012

Published by: VR-Zone

CyanogenMod 9 Nightly build has been released courtesy of the devs over at XDA-developers.com. If you’re a fan of CyanogenMod Android based firmware and you own a Galaxy S III then there’s great news! An official CyanogenMod 9 Nightly build has been released courtesy of the devs over at XDA-developers.com.. The CM9 S III ROM aims to lessen the TouchWiz UI on the stock Samsung ICS, and converts the S III to a more AOSP look. There are a few issues with this release, however, and it’s not quite perfect just yet. If you use your S III’s radio function then you will have to download an FM app from the market when switching over to this CM9 build.

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Also, avoid taking pictures that require flash as it may cause “problems”, and the LED doesn’t light up when you charge your phone. If you want more details, head over the official CM9 Nightly SIIl XDA thread. There are no benchmarks yet to show performance differences between the CM9 and the stock ROM.

Nokia 808 Pureview may come to North America Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/nokia-808-pureview-may-come-tonorth-america/16314.html June 17th, 2012

Symbian OS smartphone is a dying breed, but Nokia may not have given up just yet. A Nokia Facebook post has revealed that Nokia may release the Symbian based 808 Pureview 41 MP camera smartphone to the North American market.

Symbian OS smartphone is a dying breed, but Nokia may not have given up just yet. A Nokia Facebook post has revealed that Nokia may release the Symbian based 808 Pureview 41 MP camera smartphone to the North American market. The Nokia US Facebook post regarding an "808 reasons to be excited" has led many to speculate that Nokia is referring to none other than their 808 Pureview phone. Most likely they will release an unlocked version of the 808 Pureview, but it's also possible that some carriers may be interested in the 41 MP goliath.

“808 reasons to be excited about Monday,” states Nokia’s Facebook page.

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Published by: VR-Zone

In February, Nokia announced their 808 Pureview camera phone, but official stated that the product was not intended for the North American market. That may all change this Monday, and North American consumers may have a 41 MP camera smartphone in hand soon. Forty-one megapixels! Like. Symbian OS? We will see.

Butter shows why Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 is cool Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/butter-shows-why-qualcommsnapdragon-s4-is-cool/16313.html June 17th, 2012

How do you show off how much better your processor is compared to your competitors? Maybe you can stress test your processor against your competitors using third party software. Or perhaps show people how your processor can out clock your competitors. How about butter? No, really, butter. How do you show off how much better your processor is compared to your competitors? Maybe you can stress test your processor against your competitors using third party software. Or perhaps show people how your processor can out clock your competitors. How about butter? No, really, butter. The Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 dual core has been shown to beat other dual cores and keep up with some quad cores in various benchmarks, but that wasn’t enough for Qualcomm to prove that their product is among the elites. Lets observe how Qualcomm shows off how “cool” their CPU is. The Snapdragon S4 doesn't need real butter to show that it runs like butter. If you're in the market for a smartphone featuring the S4, then be on the look out for the HTC One X or One S (specs vary depending on markets).

Sexy looking white iPhone 5 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/sexy-looking-whiteiphone-5/16312.html June 17th, 2012

For every yin you need a yang, and last week we saw the yin of the iPhone 5 so it is only proper that this week we admire the yang. Whether you’re a fan of the black iPhone or white one, you can’t deny that both are quite sexy in their own rights. For every yin you need a yang, and last week we saw the yin of the iPhone 5 so it is only proper that this week we admire the yang. Whether you’re a fan of the black iPhone or white one, you can’t deny that both are quite sexy in their own rights. Here are some beautifully rendered images of the white iPhone 5, and keep in mind that these images are only based of leaks and rumors.

Aside from the fingerprint smudges (hopefully the new iPhone aren't fingerprint magnets), these realistic pictures may as well be the real thing!

U.S. military is looking into iOS and Android to power their agencies Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/u.s.-military-is-looking-into-ios-andandroid-to-power-their-agencies/16311.html

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Leaked document reveals more details about Xbox 720 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/leaked-document-reveals-moredetails-about-xbox-720/16310.html June 17th, 2012

RIM is in trouble yet again because the U.S. military may just switch over most of their mobile devices to Apple’s iOS or Google Android devices.

More details about the Xbox 720 have been revealed in a 56 page document leak. Within the documents are details regarding, but not limited to, improved CPU power, the Kinect “Glasses”, integration of cross platform devices, and affordability. More details about the Xbox 720 have been revealed in a 56 page document leak. Within the documents are details regarding, but not limited to, improved CPU power, the Kinect “Glasses”, integration of cross platform devices, and affordability. RIM is in trouble yet again because the U.S. military may just switch over most of their mobile devices to Apple’s iOS or Google Android devices. The BlackBerry is currently the device of choice for Pentagon among other U.S. military branches. RIM’s biggest customer is the U.S. military, but official within the military have already voiced their position on RIM’s BlackBerry platform not being able to keep up with current iOS and Android tech. Pilot programs employing platforms other than BlackBerry has already been implemented, and representatives from the Department of Defense (DoD) hope that it would improve information sharing and collaboration among the different branches of the military. The Pentagon’s chief of information officer, Teri Takai, says that flexibility provided by non-BlackBerry platforms to develop custom applications is what makes the move to platforms such as iOS or Android so attractive. Furthermore, the BlackBerry devices which the DoD currently employs does not emphasize enough mobility.

The Xbox 720 is proposed to have 6X the CPU power compared to the Xbox 360. While it is currently unknown how Microsoft intends to do this, it is rumored that they will use 6-8 ARM or x86 cores to achieve the next gen performance. Furthermore, for backward compatibility, it is rumored that they will be utilizing 3 so PPC cores to power current 360 games.

“People have been calling for this for years. It’s acknowledging that the world is moving toward mobility and the department’s got to move in that same direction,” says Dennis Moran, vice president for Harris Corp. In addition to mobility and flexibility, third party software has also provided iOS and Android with solid security which is possibly the most important aspect of any military devices. A Fixmo—third party software provider—Android Dell Streak device has already received warm welcomes by the military because it’s able to provide security, mobility, and flexibility. RIM, as it should, is also making moves to make sure the U.S. military doesn’t abandon their platform completely. The Mobile Fusion platform may be RIM’s savior as they claim that it can manage rival devices as well as their own BlackBerry products.

Augmented reality seems to be another area of focus in the 720. The leaked documents state that the new Kinect technology will seamlessly integrate “the digital world with the physical world” as well as controlling your media experience via “Gesture, Voice and Touch.” While Google’s Project Glass aims to integrate daily activities with the digital world, it seems like Microsoft is aiming 6

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to take entertainment to the next level through its Kinect technology.

Fusion thinks that Square Enix is most likely registering the domain just to prevent anyone else from doing it, as a means of protecting its intellectual property. After all, the domain was previously registered to a Tippo Pasha in Norway, until it expired in 2010. Still, the doesn't exactly answer the question: why now? Could the domain registration be a sign of something bigger to come? Upon starting up your 720, you can use more than just the peripherals that are specifics to the 720. Instead, you can use tablets/smartphones/PCs/etc… to control your digital experience. “Use your phone, slate or PC to enhance primary game play or learn more about what you’re watching on TV. Start watching on any screen - pause - resume on another.” For an expanded gaming experience the document states that you can:

Of course, I'm not talking about a potential Final Fantasy VII remake for the PC. Square Enix has already said on multiple occasions that other FF titles currently in development take precedence. Plus, even if they decide to remake FF7, it would probably not be for the PC (at least initially). But what about a re-release of 1998's PC version of Final Fantasy VII? That would certainly fly within the realms of possibility. Especially if the files to the game have already been uploaded to Steam, sitting there since 2011.

“Leverage available screens to enhance primary gameplay. E.g. privately select your play on your personal screen and watch the result on the big screen.” Lastly, Microsoft wants to make their console affordable —with a proposed price point of around $300. Perhaps the Microsoft announcement on Monday will provide more insight into the supposed document leak. You can dig more into the leaked document here.

Square Enix registers FinalFantasyVIIPC.com domain... but what for? Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/square-enix-registersfinalfantasyviipc.com-domain...-but-what-for-/16309.html June 17th, 2012

That’s “Final Fantasy 7 PC dot com” by the way, in case you’re wondering what in the world Viipc means. According to a whois record first discovered by Fusion.com, Square Enix yesterday (15 June 2012) made a domain registration for "finalfantasyviipc.com" under its company name.

What do you think? If Square Enix does indeed re-release Final Fantasy VII for the PC on Steam or elsewhere, would you purchase and play it?

Apple 1 sells for $374,500 at a New York auction Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/apple-1-sells-for-374-500-at-a-newyork-auction/16307.html June 17th, 2012

Would you buy a computer consisting of essentially a board and some microchips for $374,500? Someone did, but they 7

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didn’t buy any ordinary piece of hardware—actually, it was more like purchasing a piece of history.

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deadline.com suggests that Ubisoft may be in the process of working out a deal with Paramount Pictures to produce a Splinter Cell movie. Splinter Cell fans brace yourself for possible a major motion picture based off the video game. A recent article from deadline.com suggests that Ubisoft may be in the process of working out a deal with Paramount Pictures to produce a Splinter Cell movie. Ubisoft previously had talks with Warner Bros, but a deal never fell through. However, Paramount Pictures may be Ubisoft’s benefactor if indeed they are willing to invest in a Splinter Cell movie. Before you get excited, please remember that a lot of fantastic video games that went Hollywood end up busting rather than becoming a box office hit.

(wikipedia.com) Would you buy a computer consisting of essentially a board and some microchips for $374,500? Someone did, but they didn’t buy any ordinary piece of hardware—actually, it was more like purchasing a piece of history.

Not everyone can pull of what Angelina Jolie did for Tomb Raider (2001). Even then, hardcore Tomb Raider fanatics will say that the movie itself did not reflect the awesomeness of the game. Lets hope that, if Splinter Cell hits the big screen, Ubisoft and Paramount doesn't ruin a perfectly good game franchise by producing a shoddy movie. Remeber this?

Motorola XT553 and XT889 sales begin in China Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/motorola-xt553-and-xt889-salesbegin-in-china/16305.html June 17th, 2012

(wikipedia.com) The Apple 1 sold for $374,500 at an auction in New York, which was considerably higher than the estimated price of $180,000. Approximately 200 Apple 1s were produced in Steve Job’s parent’s garage in 1976, but only about 6 or so remained in working conditions. When the Apple 1 was sold in 1976 for $666.66 (a number Jobs came up with) it didn’t come with a case, keyboard, monitor, or even a power supply. However, it did come with an impressive 4 kilobytes of memory and a 1 MHz processor.

Motorola Mobility and China Telecom is teaming up to release two—an entry-level and a mid-range—Android devices to the Chinese market. The Motorola XT553 will be an entry-level Android device targeted at budget conscious consumers, whereas the Motorola XT889 is targeted at Android enthusiasts and professionals. Motorola Mobility and China Telecom is teaming up to release two—an entry-level and a mid-range—Android devices to the Chinese market. The Motorola XT553 will be an entry-level Android device targeted at budget conscious consumers, whereas the Motorola XT889 is targeted at Android enthusiasts and professionals.

Possible Splinter Cell movie Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/possible-splinter-cellmovie/16306.html June 17th, 2012

Splinter Cell fans, brace yourself for a possible major motion picture based off the video game. A recent article from 8

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Published by: VR-Zone

For China Telecom customers who want to have a beefier device can opt to go with the Motorola XT889 instead. The Motorola XT889 is expected to have a 1.2GHz dual core processor, a 4.3’’ 960 x 540 display, 1 GB RAM, and 16 GB of memory. Please note that the Motorola XT889 specs are based off similar devices from Motorola, and specs are not yet confirmed. Regardless of the specs, the Motorola XT889 runs Android 4.0 ICS, hence, we expect that it must have some half-decent specs. Extra features on the Motorola XT889 include splash guard nano-coating and 3G connectivity. There are no words as to the future availability of the two devices in European and North American markets.

BioWare considering making Star Wars: The Old Republic free-to-play Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/bioware-considering-making-starwars-the-old-republic-free-to-play/16304.html June 17th, 2012

The Motorola XT553 is powered by an 800MHz Qualcomm MSM725A single core processor. Other notable features include a 4’’ 320 x 480 screen, 512 MB RAM, 512 MB ROM, and a 1735 mAh battery. As with any current entry-level Android devices, the Motorola XT553 runs on Android 2.3.

BioWare is considering making its $200 million MMO Star Wars: The Old Republic (SWTOR) free-to-play after the game suffered a substantial drop in subscribers, developer layoffs, and impending server merges. BioWare is considering making its $200 million MMO Star Wars: The Old Republic (SWTOR) free-to-play after the game suffered a substantial drop in subscribers, developer layoffs, and impending server merges. Emmanuel Lusinchi, Lead Designer of the game, told GamesTM magazine: “We are looking at free-to-play, but I can't tell you in much detail. We have to be flexible and adapt to what is going on.” He added that SWTOR is facing stiff competition from freeto-play titles, many of which are “definitely good games” and that this “impacts [our] plan with what [we] want to do.” The comments were featured in an article on the GamesTM website, quoted from the magazine, but the article has since been removed, suggesting it was published ahead of time or BioWare did not want its free-to-play plans revealed to the public.

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just gotten longer as the website has now upped that delay to 3-4 weeks.

It seems only a matter of time before the game goes freeto-play, however, and it appears that the studio is definitely making plans for the transition to the new payment model. Last week at E3 Zacks Equity Research commented on the impending introduction of micro-transactions to the game: “EA expects to earn significant revenue from additional features and through micro-transactions by selling in-game based items.” This is a model that has been used to great success by competing MMO developer Turbine, which transitioned both its Dungeons and Dragons Online and Lord of the Rings Online games to a free-to-play approach. Both games have since seen huge increases in players and a substantial boost in revenue for the company, lending many other firms to follow suit. The move to free-to-play will take some time, however, as new code needs to be developed to change the game so that it can be bought piecemeal or earned through excessive grind in-game. It is not clear how BioWare will approach things, but it seems that we can definitely expect an in-game store, likely starting with exclusive speeders and pets and progressing from there to include more essential parts of the game.

Apple delays Retina display MacBook Pro, again Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/apple-delays-retina-displaymacbook-pro-again/16303.html June 17th, 2012

Those of you that checked the Apple website to put in an order for the new MacBook Pro with Retina display may have seen the notice for a 2-3 week delay. That delay may have just gotten longer as the website has now upped that delay to 3-4 weeks. Those of you that checked the Apple website to put in an order for the new MacBook Pro with Retina display may have seen the notice for a 2-3 week delay. That delay may have

It seems as if Apple can’t keep up with customer demands, and Retina fanatics will have to wait awhile longer. People can arrange for an in store pick up, but that is limited to the store’s availability—and those that are lucky enough. Hopefully Apple will have a steady supply available by this holiday seasons.

Microsoft to unveil Windows 8 tablet on Monday Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/microsoft-to-unveil-windows-8tablet-on-monday/16302.html June 17th, 2012

Microsoft is to announce its own-branded tablet computer powered by Windows 8 on Monday, 18 June in Los Angeles, according to a source close to the company. Microsoft is to announce its own-branded tablet computer powered by Windows 8 on Monday, 18 June in Los Angeles, according to a source close to the company. The Wrap cited an anonymous insider who said that Microsoft would unveil its own tablet at the event, shedding light on what has until know been a mysterious date that the company is secretly touting to key media around the world. We previously reported that Microsoft has sent out limited invites to a select number of news outlets, suggesting there will be a “major Microsoft announcement” and that “you will not want to miss it.” A variety of possibilities were on the table, but it seems that the Redmond, Washington-based company is likely to unveil its first proper attempt at stealing market share from Apple's iPad.

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Windows 8, with its Metro tablet theme, is widely considered a viable competitor to both Apple's iOS and Google's Android, with its dual nature as a desktop OS and a mobile OS a potential selling point for many users. Windows Phone 7 failed to take off, but Windows 8 shows a lot of promise, and it seems that Microsoft is willing to back it up with its own self-manufactured tablet. The announcement is scheduled for 3:30pm PST. We'll be sure to fill you in on all the details.

Booster Brolly umbrella help saves the planet and charges your cellphone Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/booster-brolly-umbrella-help-savesthe-planet-and-charges-your-cellphone/16301.html June 17th, 2012

What can you do with an umbrella and some small solar panels on a sunny day? Why not turn it into a cell phone charging contraption? Apparently, that’s what scholars at the University College London did—in conjunction with Vodafone. What can you do with an umbrella and some small solar panels on a sunny day? Why not turn it into a cell phone charging contraption? Apparently, that’s what scholars at the University College London did—in conjunction with Vodafone. It’s called the “Booster Brolly”, and it’s one of the many devices that probably won’t make it mainstream, but it will turn some heads if someone actually uses it in public.

Published by: VR-Zone

The Booster Brolly is an umbrella with flexible solar panels attached to the canopy. The current from the solar panels are transferred via electrical components down the carbon fiber skeleton of the umbrella, and phones are charged via a USB port near the bottom of the umbrella’s handle. The developers claim that a phone can be charged in under three hours when the weather is permitting. “The custom canopy has been fitted with 12 lightweight amorphous silicon triple junction solar cells that have the ability to convert light into electricity, through a series of highly sensitive photovoltaic semiconductors,” says Dr. Kenneth Tong, a UCL professor. “The current generated is then transferred, via a voltage regulator, to the handle of the umbrella where it is stored safely in high capacity rechargeable batteries, or used to directly charge a mobile device through a USB port.” More than a novelty, the Booster Brolly may be a solution to Earth’s dying need for clean energy. Save the planet, one cellphone charge at a time. But, it just doesn’t look fashionable enough for the masses.

Adobe releases Captivate 6 e-learning software with HTML5 support Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/adobe-releases-captivate-6-elearning-software-with-html5-support/16300.html June 17th, 2012

Adobe has released Captivate 6, the latest version of its elearning software, with support for HTML5, which helps users quickly create e-learning and mobile learning content. Adobe has released Captivate 6, the latest version of its elearning software, with support for HTML5, which helps users quickly create e-learning and mobile learning content. The pivotal feature of the update is HTML5, which Adobe has been making huge efforts to embrace in all its software. Users can also publish their HTML5 e-learning content on iOS and Android devices and a pause and resume feature

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means that students can, for example, begin a course on their desktop PC, pause it and resume it from their smartphone. The software allows users to quickly create high-definition demos of e-learning coursework with the capture-as-a-video feature. Videos can be edited, transitions and smart shapes can be added, and audio and captions can be put in place. Videos can even be published straight to YouTube.

Published by: VR-Zone June 17th, 2012

The International Data Corporation (IDC) has released a report stating that new products and lower price points will increase tablet shipments—higher than previously expected. Moreover, the release of Windows 8/RT tablets won’t necessarily take shares away from iOS or Android, but rather it will help the overall tablet market grow. The International Data Corporation (IDC) has released a report stating that new products and lower price points will increase tablet shipments—higher than previously expected. Moreover, the release of Windows 8/RT tablets won’t necessarily take shares away from iOS or Android, but rather it will help the overall tablet market grow. Previously, the IDC expected 137.4 million units to be shipped in 2013, but that number received a 5.4 million unit boost after revisions to the forecast. Thus, 142.8 million units is expected to ship in 2013, and nearly doubles by 2016 with 222.1 million units.

Captivate 6 comes with a slew of preloaded content, such as actors, widgets, animated rollovers and other interactive elements that enhance e-learning content. PowerPoint 2010 slides, with their objects and animations, can also be easily imported and any updates or changes will affect the original file through a built-in sync feature. The update also comes with enhanced quizzing, allowing users to add pre-tests, which can direct users to appropriate knowledge or skill level sections of a course based on their results. Enhanced LMS integration means content can also be easily published to Moodle, Blackboard, Plateau, Saba and SumTotal. “Today, learners expect engaging eLearning options on their iOS and Android devices – static presentations shrunk to fit mobile screens aren’t enough,” said Naresh Gupta, SVP of Print and Publishing atAdobe. “Captivate 6 gives subject matter experts and content creators the ability to deliver eLearning content to mobile devices that is as robust and interactive as the content delivered to desktops.” Captivate 6 allows users to create SCORM- and AICCcompliant courses and is available for purchase immediately for $899, or users can upgrade from Captivate 4 for $539 and from Captivate 5.5 for $359.

iPad market share expected to grow while Android's decreases Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/ipad-market-share-expected-togrow-while-android-s-decreases/16299.html

Apple iPad market shares are expected to increase from 58.2% in 2011 to 62.5% by this year’s end. Whereas iOS tablets are expected to increase in shares, Android based tablets will lose market shares—going from 38.7% to 36.5% by the end of this year. RIM’s BlackBerry tablets are expected to lose nearly 50% of their current market share— going from 1.7% to 1%. The ICD credits Apple’s business strategy for the increase in iPad market share. The addition of Retina Display and 4G capabilities have enticed first/second-gen iPad users to upgrade. Furthermore, Apple’s decision to leave the secondgen iPad on the market and moving it to a lower price point is another factor for the iPad’s surge in market shares. When Apple releases its sub $300 7’’ tablet, as speculated, the IDC expects that Apple’s hold on the tablet market to become even stronger.

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First Look: ASUS ThunderboltEX PCIe Upgrade Card Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/first-look-asus-thunderboltex-pcieupgrade-card/16298.html June 17th, 2012

Officially announced at Computex last week, the ThunderboltEX PCIe expansion card (and its dual port version) brings single port 10Gbps Thunderbolt connectivity to some of the existing ASUS Intel 7-series, and even incoming AMD AM3+ motherboards. It arrived at our labs today so we took a quick look at how it worked. Based on Intel's DSL3310 Cactus Ridge 2C host controller, the ThunderboltEX card plugs into a PCIe x4 slot and has a cable to interface with the TB_HEADER pinout (board power and BIOS plug-n-pray events) on select ASUS Z77/ H77 or upcoming AM3+ motherboards. Another full-sized DisplayPort interconnect cable is provided to (optionally) encapsulate DP signals from the graphics card output with the Thunderbolt data streams.

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We will post usage experiences and performance figures together with our upcoming two-part LN2 review of the Maximus V GENE!

Diablo III PC Game Review Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/diablo-iii-pc-gamereview/16297.html June 17th, 2012

Upon installation of the card, a new Thunderbolt menu appears in the Maximus V GENE's UEFi BIOS, allowing for adjustments to memory space reservation options which comes into play when resolving daisy chain hot plug detection issues. Intel engineers say a good BIOS should assist Windows 7 with PCIe hot-plug by pre-allocating requited resources at boot stage, or else subsequent hot plugged devices will be unusable and marked with a “yellow bang” error code of 12 (lack of resources) in the Device Manager until next complete re-enumeration (i.e reboot).

It has been more than a decade since we last heard of Diablo. For the younger gamers, this title would probably be their first experience of dungeon crawling, demon slaying and getting acquainted with the Lord of Terror and his Underworld brothers. For gamers in the more senior years, this will be an updated nostalgic experience of the days of mouse abuse and "click... click... click click... click click click…..”. Back in the year 2000, players destroyed the soulstones of Mephisto and Diablo and later defeated Baal in the Worldstone Chamber; Mephisto (Lord of Hatred), Diablo (Lord of Terror) and Baal (Lord of Destruction ) are three of the Prime Evils in the game. These events should have left Sanctuary in peace, but Diablo himself had a much more cunning plan in his desire to take the battle beyond the mortal realm. This outlines the story of Diablo III and 14

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be prepared to head back into the basement of Tristram's Cathedral, the infernal depths of Hell, and the very bastion of Heaven itself. Before we go to the game play, let's take a look at what's in the Diablo 3 box set.

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try out Diablo III, as well as the game DVD and the CD-Key to activate your game on Battle.Net, and a Diablo III-themed notepad. You will need an Internet connection to be able to play the game (which is unlike the previous versions). This is Blizzard's way of preventing game piracy and it can get extremely annoying when you want to play a single player mode. Yes, you will still need to be connected online if you want to play on your own. I will shed some light on the advantages and disadvantages of this later on.

Can HTC's One X take on Samsung's Galaxy S III in Korea? Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/can-htc-s-one-x-take-on-samsung-sgalaxy-s-iii-in-korea-/16296.html June 17th, 2012

Taiwan's HTC is planning on releasing the One X in Korea some time next month, but how will it carve out any market share if its competing in market dominated by domestic firms? The HTC One X is a flagship product, and so is the Samsung Galaxy S III, but can the One X really take on the Korean market?

This is what the standard edition box looks like. From what I have heard so far, they are rare in stores now due to being out of stock (yes, they are very in demand by Diablo fans especially). Have a good look at it if you intend to spot them out on the retail shelves. It has got the embossed face of Diablo on the the front and a two-page sort of facade that flip open to the synopsis of the game on the inside. This has been a standard for almost all of Blizzard games. On the inside is a cardboard casing with some guest passes to let your friends

Taiwan's HTC is planning on releasing the One X in Korea some time next month, but how will it carve out any market share if its competing in market dominated by domestic firms? The HTC One X is a flagship product, and so is the Samsung Galaxy S III, but can the One X really take on the Korean market? HTC has been producing relatively good products thus far, and the HTC One X is a prime example of HTC’s smartphone prowess. According to koreatimes.co.kr, Samsung, LG, and Pantech control 99% of the Korean cellphone market—thus, that leaves a meager 1% for foreign firms to occupy. Despite 15

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sharing very similar specs (at least in numbers anyway), the One X and S III (non-North American versions) are actually quite different. HTC One X Display CPU Memory RAM Dimension Weight

Samsung Galaxy S III 4.7’’ Super IPS 4.7’’ Super 720P AMOLED 720P Quad-core 1.5GHz Quad-core 1.5GHz Tegra 3 Exynos Max 32 GB storage Max 64 GB storage 1 GB 1 GB 134 x 70 x 8.9mm 136.6 x 70.6 x 8.6mm 130g 133g

If we were to compare the specs of the two phones, the One X loses out in the memory department as its 32 GB version is substantially lower than the S III’s 64 GB version. Both boast quad core CPU’s, but the Exynos' biggest advantage is that it’s manufactured under 32nm fabrication, as compared to the Tegra’s 40nm process. The display technology is actually a bit more complicated as it really depends on the conditions and areas in which the phone operates. You would have to be a super display junkie to really see a “big” difference.

For the adventurous and tough dads (who’s actually a softie on the inside), the Motorola DEFY XT presents a reasonablepriced but still dynamic choice as a gift. Designed to withstand the hard knocks in life, the Motorola DEFY XT is dust proof, water resistant and scratch proof, making it the perfect go-anywhere companion. With one of the largest battery capacities of 1700mAh in the market, this smartphone lets dad stay entertained and informed all day and into the night.

We can compare and analyze the specs of the two phones down to the tiniest details, but for simplicity sake, the SIII is slightly better than the One X. Hence, HTC is not trying to beat out Samsung in the specs department, but rather they are going to retail the phone for less. Korean analysts speculate that HTC will set the price of the One X at 800,000 won (~685 USD) as compared to the SIII’s 900,000 won (~770 USD).

Price: S$399 (before contract) Motorola ATRIX 2

“Putting the actual quality and features of the new phone aside, foreign models just can’t withstand the overwhelming edge in brand image that Korean companies like Samsung or LG have,” a Korean industry official told koreatimes.co.kr. National pride for a domestic product may be HTC’s biggest challenge in trying to sell their One X in Korea, and it doesn’t seem like a 1% market share is worth putting too much effort into.

Motorola Father's Day Special Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/motorola-father-s-dayspecial/16294.html June 17th, 2012

Father's Day is just round the corner. If you haven't found a gift for your dad, perhaps you could consider these recommendations from Motorola.

For the sensational and fun-loving dads, who won’t resist a quick game of him-versus-you or a cooperative-play in any one of the ten free EA games, which comes available with the Motorola ATRIX 2. With titles like Need for Speed™ Hot Pursuit, EA SPORTS™ FIFA 10 and MONOPOLY, there’s a game for everyone. Packed with a 1GHz dual-core processor, the Motorola ATRIX 2 promises to deliver blazingly fast connectivity. With a stunning 4.3 inch qHD screen, be prepared to roll your sleeves up for a smooth, crystal-clear and exciting game play with dad. Price: S$699 (before contract)

Motorola DEFY XT Motorola RAZR

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For the fashionable dads, the Motorola RAZR smartphone encapsulates a flair for style without sacrificing on features. With sculpted glass face, diamond-cut aluminium accents and hyper-vibrant 4.3-inch Super AMOLED Advanced display, this smartphone is dazzling on the outside yet hardworking on the inside. Unique features like governmentgrade encryption protects e-mails while the Smart Actions app lets dad automate everyday tasks so he can focus on what’s act6ually more important. Couple the Motorola RAZR with dad’s swagger and he’s sure to be the envy of other dads. Price: S$799 (before contract) MOTOACTV GPS Fitness Tracker and MP3 Player

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For the dads who are simply larger-than-life, the Motorola XOOM 2 emulates their personalities as the tablet provides a richer entertainment and experience. Features like the 10.1inch widescreen HD screen provides a sharper and brighter display, strategically designed edges means a better grip and the intuitive app - MOTOPRINT, which allows dad to print wirelessly, makes the Motorola XOOM 2 tablet easy on the eyes, and easy on the hands. Price: S$899

NVIDIA gets Windows 8 drivers certification Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/nvidia-gets-windows-8-driverscertification/16295.html June 17th, 2012

Early adopters of Windows 8 won’t have to worry about NVIDIA driver issues as NVIDIA announced earlier this week that it has received Microsoft’s Windows 8 driver certification.

For the athletic dads who love nifty gadgets, the MOTOACTV will make for the perfect choice. This lightweight device is designed with cutting-edge technology that is equivalent of having a professional fitness instructor and his favourite DJ helping him train at all times. Equipped with Motorola AccuSense™ technology and GPS, dad can analyse his performance and even compete with his friends via the MOTOACTV portal. Dad also has the option to stay connected to his Motorola Android-powered smartphone to answer calls and receive texts without breaking his stride. Price: S$399 Motorola XOOM 2

Early adopters of Windows 8 won’t have to worry about NVIDIA driver issues as NVIDIA announced earlier this week that it has received Microsoft’s Windows 8 driver certification. “The WHQL certification of R302 drivers highlights the fact that NVIDIA is in lock-step with Microsoft and is fully prepared for Windows 8,” states the NVIDIA blog. The Windows 8 desktop PC R302 drivers will only be available for Windows 8, and the GeForce 302.80 beta drivers are already available for download (32-bit and 6417

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bit). The mobile GPU drivers are in the works, and NVIDIA claims that it will be available soon. The certified drivers ensure Windows 8 users that they won't miss out on all the benefits that go along with an NVIDIA product. NVIDIA's 3D Vision in an array of devices will be fully functional under Windows 8. "NVIDIA’s Windows 8 drivers support all the features in the new Windows Display Driver Model (WDDM) v1.2. The drivers also support award-winning NVIDIA 3D Vision and 3DTV Play products, allowing you to play more than 600 games, watch Blu-ray movies and view photos – all in 3D." Certainly, average consumers won’t have much use for the 302.80 beta drivers, but perhaps app developers and IT professionals who are looking into Windows 8 will find it useful.

Analyst predicts 13'' MacBook Pro with Retina to be in store before Christmas Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/analyst-predicts-13--macbook-prowith-retina-to-be-in-store-before-christmas/16293.html June 17th, 2012

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KGI’s Ming-Chi Kuo is at again, and this time he predicts that Apple will have the 13’’ MacBook Pro with Retina display in stores by early October. Apple did not mention a 13’’ MacBook Pro with Retina display at WWDC, but Kuo asserts that it was not announced because of assembly limitations. Kuo also predicted—prior to WWDC—that Apple will also include a 17’’ MacBook Pro with Retina display also. Hence, Apple may keep their current model of having 13, 15, and 17’’ MacBook Pros. Kuo also expects that the 13’’ MacBook Pro with Retina to not have a discrete GPU (i.e. 650M) like that of the 15’’, but he predicts that Apple will opt to rely on the Intel HD 4000 instead. Furthermore, he predicts that approximately 300,000 15’’ MacBook Pro will be ready for consumers within this month.

Microsoft's June 18 "major" announcement Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/microsoft-s-june-18-majorannouncement/16292.html June 17th, 2012

On June 18th at 3:30 PM (Pacific Time), Microsoft will do something that will make some raise an eyebrow (or two if you can), especially the folks at Apple. Microsoft recently sent out a notification to various publishers to let them know that Microsoft is going to make “a major” announcement in Los Angeles. Aside from the secretive nature of this announcement, Microsoft is extending invitations to only certain publishers.

KGI’s Ming-Chi Kuo is at again, and this time he predicts that Apple will have the 13’’ MacBook Pro with Retina display in stores by early October.

On June 18th at 3:30 PM (Pacific Time), Microsoft will do something that will make some raise an eyebrow (or two if you can), especially the folks at Apple. Microsoft recently sent out a notification to various publishers to let them know that Microsoft is going to make “a major” announcement. Aside from the secretive nature of this announcement, Microsoft is extending invitations to only certain publishers. This will be a major Microsoft announcement — you will not want to miss it. This is a non-transferrable invitation, however, if you would like to send your local colleague in your place, please submit that name and it will be reviewed. If you would like to bring a photographer please register that person as your additional guest. Please note – still photography and video will be limited. This is an outrageous guess, but perhaps Microsoft will make Windows RT free to OEMs? VR-Zone recently published 18

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an article sharing with viewers that Microsoft is planning to charge $85 for that version of Windows. As many may agree that, that may be a bad business decision by Microsoft as iOS and Android are dominating the tablet market. Or perhaps Microsoft will announce that they intend to purchase Nokia’s Mobile division to extend their smartphone business. Nokia is struggling and rumors has it that Microsoft may be the favorite to step in. To be honest, any guess is a great guess, but chances are the “major” announcement will have something to do with hardware.

UK Preparing To Track Citizens' Internet Usage Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/uk-preparing-to-track-citizensinternet-usage/16285.html June 17th, 2012

A new bill before the British Parliament looks to require ISPs to records massive amounts of data about every citizen's Internet usage in order to combat criminals' use of new technologies. Everybody, get your tin-foil hats ready. The UK is planning on increasing the surveillance of its citizens by monitoring their Internet use. A new plan from Her Majesty’s government would require all details of every Internet user’s activities to be stored for at least a full year in order to allow police and intelligence agencies to have access to it. These details will include activity on social sites, emails, VoIP calls, gaming sessions, etc. Theresa May, the Home Secretary, calls the changes necessary in order to keep up with new technology and how criminals use that technology. However, David Davis, a senior member of the Tory party, said the new measures are “incredibly intrusive” and will only “catch the innocent and incompetent.” The bill, entitled the Communications Data Bill, has been published and is before Parliament in draft form, but a huge battle over the bill is looming, with members of the Liberal Democratic Party and Conservatives such as Mr. Davis calling for the watering down or abandonment altogether of the bill. In order to win over some of the critics, restrictions are likely going to be placed on what kinds of data local authorities can access, but civil liberties groups are still branding the bill a “snooper’s charter.” They are calling for law enforcement to start targeting actual suspects, rather than every UK citizen. Currently, UK telecommunications and ISP companies must keep phone and email records from their own services for 12 months, but the new proposals would require them to keep many more details, including websites visited. The new legislation stems from concerns among police and security services that criminals and terrorists are evading detection through the use of social media and online gaming in order to communicate with each other. Officers under the new legislation would still require a warrant to access details about the records, but the government could request any

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service provider to keep records on Internet usage, though initially only a dozen companies will be required to do so. The previous regime, under the Labour Party, was forced to abandon its plans to store every citizen’s internet data on a single, massive database after widespread protests of the plan, and Theresa May says that there are no plans to resurrect that idea. The current bill will first be scrutinized by a joint committee in Parliament before efforts to pass it through Parliament and into law begins. While police forces say the measure is absolutely needed in order to apprehend more criminals and continue to wage, in the words of Metropolitan Police Commissioner Bernard Hogan-Howe, a “total war on crime,” Tory David Davies has pointed out that the only people this will affect are the innocent and the inept. He pointed out the flaws in the idea of storing everyone’s data, saying “you use an internet café, you hack into somebody’s [Wi-Fi], you use what’s called proxy servers, and [those] are just the easy ways.” He also said “If they really want to do things like this - and we all accept they use data to catch criminals - get a warrant. Get a judge to sign a warrant, not the guy at the next desk, not somebody else in the same organization.”

Apple Changes Tune on Mac Malware Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/apple-changes-tune-on-macmalware/16289.html June 17th, 2012

Apple is changing its tune when it comes to the prevalence of and problems posed by malware on their Mac platforms. Remember the marketing Apple used to do for their Mac laptops and desktops? One of the key points they made was that Windows has thousands and millions of versions of malware and viruses to contend with, even making that point through their “Mac vs. PC” ads that aired on TV, which you can see here. Even as recent as a few days ago, Apple was quick to point out that OS X doesn’t get PC viruses and that the operating system would defend against viruses and malware with “virtually no effort on your part.” If you go to the “Why you’ll love a Mac” webpage, you’ll see something different. Previously, the website had listed these major points: It doesn’t get PC viruses. A Mac isn’t susceptible to the thousands of viruses plaguing Windows-based computers. That’s thanks to built-in defenses in Mac OS X that keep you safe, without any work on your part. Safeguard your data. By doing nothing. With virtually no effort on your part, OS X defends against viruses and other malicious applications, or malware. For example, it thwarts hackers through a technique called “sandboxing” — restricting what actions programs can perform on your Mac, what files they can access, and what other programs they can launch. 19

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If you go to the site today, however, this is what you’ll see: It’s built to be safe. Built-in defenses in OS X keep you safe from unknowingly downloading malicious software on your Mac. Safety. Built right in. OS X is designed with powerful, advanced technologies that work hard to keep your Mac safe. For example, it thwarts hackers through a technique called “sandboxing” — restricting what actions programs can perform on your Mac, what files they can access, and what other programs they can launch. It should be fairly obvious what caused the change in message from Apple. Just a few months ago, after all, researchers discovered that one particular piece of malware had infected over 600,000 Macs across the globe, including 274 in Cupertino, Apple’s hometown. In short, Apple realized that their claims would sound hollow now that their “hack-proof” systems had been definitively proven to be just as susceptible to malware as PCs. Apple can no longer deny that Mac malware is a reality, and even mentioned it in a WWDC keynote address for the first time in the history of that conference. Hopefully, Apple’s users will follow Apple off the high horse of superiority towards PC and learn to follow standard security practices, like not downloading unknown files and installing anti-virus software.

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VR-Zone.com | Tech News for the Geeks! VR-Zone | Stuff for the Geeks is a bi-weekly publication covering the latest gadgets and stuff for the geeks.

Buffalo Rolls Out 2 TB MiniStation Shock-Resistant HDD Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/buffalo-rolls-out-2-tb-ministationshock-resistant-hdd/16354.html June 20th, 2012

Buffalo Technology's Japanese arm released a new 2 TB variant of its MiniStation HDPNTU3 series portable hard drives. A selling point of these drives is greater shocktolerance. You can afford to be just a little clumsy around these drives. Buffalo Technology's Japanese arm released a new 2 TB variant of its MiniStation HDPNTU3 series portable hard drives. A selling point of these drives is greater shocktolerance. You can afford to be just a little clumsy around these drives. The new MiniStation HD-PNT2.0U3-GBJ from Buffalo provides 2 TB of unformatted capacity, and the advantage of USB 3.0 SuperSpeed interface, which eliminates interface bottlenecks. A single cable is used for both connectivity and power. The drive is backwardscompatible with USB 2.0 HiSpeed interface.

Measuring 82 x 118 x 22 mm (W x D x H), the MiniStation HD-PNT2.0U3-GBJ weighs about 260 g. It comes with installers for Buffalo Turbo PC software, which its makers claim, speeds up drive access by up to 2-times; and data encryption software. The drive further supports 256-bit AES native data encryption. The drive supports most devices apart from PCs and Macs, which can work with USB Mass Storage-class devices. These include the Sony PlayStation 3 (provided the drive is partitioned and formatted with FAT32 file-system). Slated for a late-June launch in the Japanese markets (first), the MiniStation HD-PNT2.0U3-GBJ is expected to be priced at 31,080 Japanese Yen (US $390, SG$495).

Microsoft revamps Windows Phone 8 start screen, adds dual-core support Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/microsoft-revamps-windowsphone-8-start-screen-adds-dual-core-support/16353.html June 20th, 2012

Microsoft has announced a host of new features that will come with Windows Phone 8, including a revamped start screen, dual-core processor support, more screen resolutions, microSD support, a digital wallet, and several improvements for business users.

Inside, the hard drive is protected by a shock absorbing frame that dampens shockwaves that are transmitted by the sides of the drive, and shock absorbing rubber plates that dampen shock transmitted by the top and bottom. The mechanism is supposed to give the drive higher shock tolerance than most other portable drives, although Buffalo did not specify a shock threshold (hard drive manufacturers commonly do). The product page on Buffalo's website subtly cautions users against "intentionally" dropping the drive.

Microsoft has announced a host of new features that will come with Windows Phone 8, including a revamped start screen, dual-core processor support, more screen resolutions, microSD support, a digital wallet, and several improvements for business users. The new start screen is, besides the shared Windows core, the main attraction of Windows Phone 8. On the surface it looks just like Windows Phone 7, but the customisation options are vastly superior, mimicking those of the upcoming desktop OS.

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Essentially users can load pretty much anything into a tile, change the tile size, move things around, and generally make their phone look and feel more unique to them. Microsoft gave examples of what this meant, with the start screen showing a variety of music-based tiles for a music lover, book-based tiles for a bookworm, game-based tilers for a gamer, and so on.

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as “the most complete wallet experience.� Instead of just focusing on payments, the company wants to replace the entire wallet, including credit and debit cards, loyalty and membership cards, saved deals, and tap-to-pay via NFC. This makes it much more comprehensive than even Apple's recently unveiled Passbook feature, though it will remain to be seen how it works in action. Microsoft is again following in Apple's footsteps with a map update of its own, but instead of relying on TomTom maps, it is using Nokia maps, with turn-by-turn directions and offline map support. Finally, the company is not ignoring the huge business user base out there, noting dissatisfaction with Windows Phone 7's enterprise features. Windows Phone 8 will fill the gaps, with encryption and secure boot, thanks to Bitlocker. It will also come with LOB app deployment, easy device management that will be similar to the desktop Windows experience, and, of course, Microsoft Office.

Dual-core support is an important addition, given that rival mobile platforms are skyrocketing ahead with faster processors that have many more cores. Efficiency and battery life are two things that are holding back further multi-core support, but we can also expect quad-core support in the future.

Overall, Windows Phone 8 takes what was good about the previous version and fills in a lot of missing features. The shared code with Windows 8 remains the big reveal, however, and that will likely be the deciding factor in the growth of this platform.

Microsoft is also adding two new resolutions, making three total on offer: WVGA (800x480), WXGA (1280x768), and 720p (1280x720). The long-awaited microSD support will arrive with Windows Phone 8, giving users more storage options. Internet Explorer 10 is built into Windows Phone 8, featuring an anti-phising filter, four times faster JavaScript performance compared to Windows Phone 7.5, and two times the HTML5 feature support. Microsoft showed some SunSpider charts that revealed that the browser is faster on Windows Phone 8 than rival smartphones, including the Samsung Galaxy S III and iPhone 4S.

Microsoft introduces "shared Windows core" with Windows Phone 8 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/microsoft-introduces-sharedwindows-core-with-windows-phone-8/16352.html June 20th, 2012

Microsoft has unveiled Windows Phone 8 at the Windows Phone Summit in San Francisco, with the biggest feature being shared code with Windows 8, creating a potentially universal experience across desktop computers and mobile devices. NFC support and the new Wallet feature are another major element of Windows Phone 8, with Microsoft touting it

Microsoft has unveiled Windows Phone 8 at the Windows Phone Summit in San Francisco, with the biggest feature being shared code with Windows 8, creating a potentially 2

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universal experience across desktop computers and mobile devices. Unlike Windows Phone 7, which was vastly different to Windows 7, both Windows Phone 8 and Windows 8 will have what Microsoft is calling a “shared Windows core,” which means the kernel and graphics support, among other things, will be uniform across both operating systems, making it not only easier for developers to make cross-platform software, but end-users will find it easier to transition between the two. Native code support for games, with shared drivers, will also mean that gaming on Windows Phone 8 will be much better than the previous version. Microsoft is promising "killer games" this year.

Published by: VR-Zone June 20th, 2012

The United States and Israel are allegedly behind the potent Flame malware, which targets countries in the Middle East, according to a US newspaper. The United States and Israel are allegedly behind the potent Flame malware, which targets countries in the Middle East, according to a US newspaper. The Washington Post cited anonymous Western officials “with knowledge of the effort,” suggesting that the US National Security Agency, the CIA and the Israeli military all worked together on crafting the complex computer virus. The target, it appears, is Iran, with the malware designed to “slow Iran's nuclear program,” potentially linking it with the Stuxnet virus that crippled Iran's nuclear facilities, which is also believed to be the work of the US and Israel.

Of course, a major part of the equation is that Windows 8 is getting the Metro interface, with the various tiles that we have come to know from Windows Phone 7, so a large part of the change is on the desktop OS, not the mobile OS. Regardless, the shared Windows core will have developers jumping for joy and will greatly expand the Windows Phone developer base, as it will be easy to port apps and software from Windows 8 over. Windows Phone 7 failed to generate the kind of support that Apple's iOS or Google's Android has, but Windows 8 looks like a promising operating system, both for desktop computers and tablets, and bringing more of this potentially winning formula to Windows Phone 8 could give rivals a run for their money.

The malware differs from Stuxnet in that it is not designed to cause damage, but acts at a highly sophisticated level to steal data, taking screenshots, recording sounds near the infected computer, and connecting and spreading to nearby devices via Bluetooth.

Windows Phone 8 is due out in Autumn.

US and Israel allegedly behind Flame malware Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/us-and-israel-allegedly-behindflame-malware/16351.html

Kaspersky Labs, which discovered Flame, noted that the majority of attacks, 189, were focused on Iran, but there were 98 in Israel and Palestine, and 32 in Sudan. Flame may be only the beginning of something much bigger, however. A former US high-ranking intelligence official told the Washington Post that the malware “is about preparing the battlefield for another type of covert action. Cybercollection against the Iranian programme is way further down the road than this.”

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Iran has since developed a fix for the virus, but given that it had been in operation since 2010, chances are that there are other undetected malware out there, secretly collecting information and paving the way for what some consider the next battlefront: all out cyber war.

Amazon leaks Wii U price and release date Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/amazon-leaks-wii-u-price-andrelease-date/16350.html June 20th, 2012

Amazon has leaked the price and release date for Nintendo's much-anticipated next-generation console, the Wii U, and the figures may come as a shock to some. Amazon has leaked the price and release date for Nintendo's much-anticipated next-generation console, the Wii U.

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The UK version of Amazon also listed the console last week, but it was priced at a much more modest £199, which equates to $315 or €248, a far more affordable price and much more in line with expectations. However, another UK retailer, ShopTo, listed the Wii U for £279.85, so it is hard to tell which is the most accurate price. It may be that each retailer is simply putting up its own estimate, which only serves to confuse potential customers. As for the release date, Amazon.de lists it as 21 December, just days before Christmas. This will help with the busy holiday sales, but it may cause problems with people trying to get the console in time as a gift for friends and family.

Latest Diablo III patch stops players from earning XP Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/latest-diablo-iii-patch-stops-playersfrom-earning-xp/16349.html June 20th, 2012

The German website, Amazon.de, listed the Wii U for preorder at €399.99, which is roughly $508 or £323, making it somewhat pricier than expected. The price may, of course, be an estimate and has yet to be confirmed by Nintendo, but if this is the launch price it begs the question why Reggie Fils-Aime, President of Nintendo America, promised that fans will be “pleasantly surprised” by the price. The original Wii launched and stayed at $250 for a long time, but Amazon's Wii U price is more than double that. While the new controller is likely more expensive to make than a standard Wiimote, it would not justify the overall high cost, which will do little to attract families on low budgets, one of the big audiences Nintendo secured with the original model.

Blizzard's latest patch for its hack-and-slash role-playing game Diablo III has fixed several bugs, but introduced a major new one that stops players from earning experience points (XP). Blizzard's latest patch for its hack-and-slash role-playing game Diablo III has fixed several bugs, but introduced a major new one that stops players from earning experience points (XP). In what is seemingly a never-ending series of glitches and hiccups for the gaming company, Patch 1.0.3 stops players from receiving XP and also caps their characters at level 13, an extremely low level in the 60 levels of play available. Reports suggest that only those who bought a digital copy of the game are affected by the bug. Years ago that might have been a small number, but many people buy digital downloads today, so the player base affected is likely huge.

Games are also listed at €69.99, which is around $89 or £57, making them much more expensive than Wii titles, which cost around $50 at launch. Such high prices will likely drive away gamers, casual and hardcore.

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Despite the monumentally game-breaking nature of this bug, there appears to be a simple fix. All users have to do is change their password and the XP will start rolling in again, according to player reports. The problem is that many players may not know about this fix and some may go through an entire dungeon before they realise they are not earning XP, with no compensation for such wasted time. For some it may be the last straw in a series of disasters since the game launched, while for others it is yet another amusing reminder that game patches often break more than they fix.

The Xperia ion was announced at CES earlier this year, sporting a 4.6-inch HD display, equipped with 1.5GHz dualcore processor, 16GB flash storage and 12-megapixel rear camera that can snap in just over a second with a single key press from sleep mode. Preloaded with Android 4.0 ICS, the Xperia ion will be made available in Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore in Q3 2012. Xperia go

Sony Mobile announces new Xperia smartphones in Southeast Asia Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/sony-mobile-announces-new-xperiasmartphones-in-southeast-asia/16347.html June 20th, 2012

Today, Sony Mobile unveiled six new Xperia smartphones for the Southeast Asia market, which include Xperia ion, Xperia go, Xperia acro S, Xperia neo L, Xperia miro and Xperia tipo. Xperia ion

The sleek and stylish Xperia go isn't just all about looks; it is also durable and water resistant. It has a 3.5-inch Reality Display powered by Mobile BRAVIA Engine that offers superb entertainment. Powered by 1GHz dual core processor, the smartphone features a 5-megapixel camera that can go into capture mode very quickly. Launching on Android 2.3 Gingerbread, the Xperia go is upgradeable to Android 4.0 ICS. It will be available from Q3, 2012 in Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore. Xperia acro S

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the one used on the R7970 Lightning. The PCB uses an 8+3 phase VRM design that draws power from two 8-pin PCIe power connectors; uses a CHiL-made VRM controller with software interface for Afterburner; and high-grade components that include SFC chokes (don't whine on load), and International Rectifier DirectFETs. MSI includes its GPU Reactor module, which conditions power for the GPU.

The Xperia acro S boasts a 4.3-inch HD Reality Display for razor sharp clarity. It features full HD video recording, HD video chat, HDMI out to TV and is NFC-enabled for opening applications using the Xperia SmartTag. It is PlayStation certified and runs Android 4.0 ICS. The Xperia acro S will be available in Singapore and Indonesia in Q3, 2012.

The N680GTX Lightning comes with out-of-the-box clock speeds of 1100 MHz (GPU base), 1176 MHz (GPU Boost), although the memory is left untouched, at 1502/6008 MHz (actual/effective). The GPU is armed with 2 GB of GDDR5 memory, across a 256-bit wide memory interface.

MSI GeForce GTX 680 Lightning Launched Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/msi-geforce-gtx-680-lightninglaunched/16348.html June 20th, 2012

MSI launched its fastest custom-design GeForce GTX 680 graphics card, the N680GTX Lightning. The card is armed with unlocked digital power VRM, TwinFrozr IV cooling solution, factory-overclocked frequencies, in a package that doesn't need more than two expansion card slots in your system. MSI launched its fastest custom-design GeForce GTX 680 graphics card, the N680GTX Lightning. The card is armed with unlocked digital power VRM, TwinFrozr IV cooling solution, factory-overclocked frequencies, in a package that doesn't need more than two expansion card slots in your system.

The N680GTX Lightning from MSI combines a custom design PCB with focus on a high-grade VRM, with its TwinFrozr IV cooling solution, of similar specifications to

Cooling the beast is MSI's in-house design TwinFrozr IV cooling solution, which made its debut with the Radeon HD 7970-based R7970 Lightning. The cooler, along with the PCB and its lavish VRM, make the card taller than usual, although it avoids needing more than two expansion slots in your system. The cooler uses a dense aluminum fin array, to which heat from the GPU is fed by five nickel-plated copper heat pipes (three 6 mm-thick, and two 8 mm-thick), which make indirect contact with the GPU over a nickel-plated copper base. The aluminum fin array is then ventilated by two 100 mm MSI PropellerBlade fans. MSI claims the solution keeps the card 16 degrees cooler and 6.7dB quieter than NVIDIA reference design cooler. The memory and VRM are cooled by a separate heatspreader, which is cooled under the fans' air-flow. There are DirectFETs even on the reverse side of the PCB, which are cooled by a metal backplate.

MSI promises additional overclocking potential thanks to the strong VRM and its Afterburner software, which can leverage on the CHiL VRM controller's capabilities. A couple of nifty overclocker friendly features are part of the mix, including dual-BIOS with a liquid nitrogen cooling-optimized BIOS, and a standard BIOS that packs 6

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the advertised clock speeds; and 3x3 OC Kits for real-time monitoring and control of the GPU, PLL, and memory voltage domains, and monitoring of temperature zones.

MSI is expected to price the N680GTX Lightning somewhere around US $580 (S$734).

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in the market, with a large aluminum fin heatsink spanning its entire length.

The main heatsink design consists of a dense array of aluminum fins (140 in number), to which heat from the GPU is conveyed by seven 8 mm-thick heat pipes. The main GPU block further has grooves for an additional six 8 mm-thick heat pipes that bridge it to the optional, secondary heatsink that can be attached to the reverse side of the card. This heatsink must be attached before venturing into overclocking. Together, the two heatsinks provide a staggering 20,000 cm2 of surface area for heat dissipation.

Colorful Silences the GeForce GTX 680 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/colorful-silences-the-geforcegtx-680/16346.html June 20th, 2012

Colorful could have a hard time convincing people they're not getting pranked looking at the industry's very first fanless, passive-cooled GeForce GTX 680 graphics card. The Chinese graphics card and motherboard designer pulled off some very audacious and fascinating designs in the past, but this one takes the cake. Colorful could have a hard time convincing people they're not getting pranked looking at the industry's very first fanless, passive-cooled GeForce GTX 680 graphics card. The Chinese graphics card and motherboard designer pulled off some very audacious and fascinating designs in the past, but this one takes the cake.

Colorful will ship the card with at least NVIDIA reference clock speeds (1006/1058/6008 MHz core/boost/memory), though we have reason to believe the card will be designed for overclocking, or could even come with factoryoverclocked speeds, looking at the pair of 8-pin PCIe power connectors, indicating a strong VRM. It could also be interpreted as a VRM design in which load (and heat) is spread across several phases.

The card supports 4-way SLI. Display outputs include one each of DVI dual-link, HDMI, and DisplayPort connectors. Colorful is still assessing the viability of the product for mass-production. Called the Colorful iGame GTX 680 Passive Edition, the card uses a completely silent cooling assembly for the 3.5 billion transistor GPU, without compromising on clock speeds. The idea behind the iGame Passive Edition appears to be not only getting the GPU to work reliably at NVIDIA reference clock speeds, but also allow a degree of overclocking by end-users. The card itself is longer than most GTX 680 graphics cards

Google Nexus 7'' to unveil at I/O event in San Francisco Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/google-nexus-7--to-unveil-at-ioevent-in-san-francisco/16345.html

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shot. In a rendering test using HTML5test.com, Dolphin was found 5-10X faster than the default browser, and 100% faster than Google Chrome.

The Kindle and Nook may have a surprise visitor next month. Google’s 7’’ Nexus is rumored to unveil at Google’s I/O event from June 27-29 in San Francisco, and is expected to hit retail stores in July.

According to the people behind the Dolphin mobile browser —utilizing the Dolphin Engine (beta)—the Dolphin mobile browser for Android is the fastest HTML 5 browser by a long shot. In a rendering test using HTML5test.com, Dolphin was found 5-10X faster than the default browser, and 100% faster than Google Chrome.

Developers behind Dolphin claimed the dramatic differences between their browser and competing browsers were due to their careful attention to various areas of GPU/ CPU optimization and canvas rendering. The Kindle and Nook may have a surprise visitor next month. Google’s 7’’ Nexus is rumored to unveil at Google’s I/O event from June 27-29 in San Francisco, and is expected to hit retail stores in July.

“Dolphin has placed particular attention to canvas element, 2D context and text rendering. In addition, Dolphin Engine made significant GPU technology improvements around GPU accelerated canvas rendering and optimized CPU / GPU parallel computing.”

Google’s Nexus 7’’ will likely have a Tegra 3 quad core with Android 4.0 ICS as OS of choice. There aren’t any words on an official release date for Jelly Bean so it’s realistic to assume that the Nexus 7’’ won’t come with Jelly Bean out of the box. It does not have a rear camera, but a front facing camera is expected. “The 7-inch Nexus tablet PC already started shipping in June and is estimated to be available in the retail channel in July with the device's total shipments expected to reach at least three million units in the second half of the year.” The price of the Nexus 7’’ is set to be around $199, and will come with Wi-Fi for connectivity. According to Asustek’s Chairman, Jonney Shih, due to the Nexus 7’s low price it only supports a Wi-Fi connection. Asustek and Google worked together on the Nexus 7, but Asus will also release its own 7’’ in August—priced at around $159-179.

Dolphin for Android is the fastest HTML5 mobile browser Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/dolphin-for-android-is-the-fastesthtml5-mobile-browser/16344.html June 20th, 2012

According to the people behind the Dolphin mobile browser —utilizing the Dolphin Engine (beta)—the Dolphin mobile browser for Android is the fastest HTML 5 browser by a long

They also claimed that the 450 score on HTML5test.com means that HTML5 based web apps/games will be better supported than other browsers. Check out their official post here.

Linus Torvalds lashes out against NVIDIA Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/linus-torvalds-lashes-out-againstnvidia/16343.html June 20th, 2012

XDA’s developers may be the saviors of many halfhearted stock Android OS out of the box, and NVIDIA and 8

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Qualcomm are not making it any easier on advocates of open source. XDA’s developers may be the saviors of many halfhearted stock Android OS out of the box, and NVIDIA and Qualcomm are not making it any easier on advocates of open source. In a recent YouTube video, Linus Torvalds was asked about NVIDIA’s lack of support for Linux, and Torvalds essentially said NVIDIA doesn’t give a “f*ck” about the open source community and that all NVIDIA cares about is selling chips. “It’s sad, because NVIDIA tries to sell chips, a lot of chips into the Android market, and NVIDIA has been the single worst company we’ve ever had to deal with. So NVIDIA, f*ck* you,” Torvalds exclaimed. Hardware manufacturers that sell their product through an open source platform like Android will get a lot of heat from developers if they don’t provide support for the hardware they make. XDA-developers’ ADAMOUTLER sums the problem with NVIDIA’s and Qualcomm’s, often, closed hardware rather nicely: “Closed hardware makes it difficult for developers to isolate and troubleshoot problems. You can take a look into the past, almost one year ago, when Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich was released. The first fully supported processor was the Samsung Exynos, followed up quickly by the Texas Instruments OMAP, and shortly thereafter, the Samsung Hummingbird. It was quite literally months of development work, which involved getting data through official and notso-official channels to get ICS on these closed-hardware NVIDIA and Qualcomm processors.” “There is quite simply no reason whatsoever for an Open Platform like Android to be reduced to running on Closed Hardware like Tegra or Snapdragon,” he added. Update 1 NVIDIA issued a statement to Phoronix: Supporting Linux is important to NVIDIA, and we understand that there are people who are as passionate about Linux as an open source platform as we are passionate about delivering an awesome GPU experience. Recently, there have been some questions raised about our lack of support for our Optimus notebook technology. When we launched our Optimus notebook technology, it was with support for Windows 7 only. The open source community rallied to work around this with support from the Bumblebee Open Source Project http://bumblebeeproject.org/. And as a result, we've recently made Installer and readme changes in our R295 drivers that were designed to make interaction with Bumblebee easier.

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please everyone, it does allow us to provide the most consistent GPU experience to our customers, regardless of platform or operating system. As a result: 1) Linux end users benefit from same-day support for new GPUs , OpenGL version and extension parity between NVIDIA Windows and NVIDIA Linux support, and OpenGL performance parity between NVIDIA Windows and NVIDIA Linux. 2) We support a wide variety of GPUs on Linux, including our latest GeForce, Quadro, and Tesla-class GPUs, for both desktop and notebook platforms. Our drivers for these platforms are updated regularly, with seven updates released so far this year for Linux alone. The latest Linux drivers can be downloaded from www.nvidia.com/object/ unix.html. 3) We are a very active participant in the ARM Linux kernel. For the latest 3.4 ARM kernel – the next-gen kernel to be used on future Linux, Android, and Chrome distributions – NVIDIA ranks second in terms of total lines changed and fourth in terms of number of changesets for all employers or organizations. At the end of the day, providing a consistent GPU experience across multiple platforms for all of our customers continues to be one of our key goals.

Sharkoon DarkGlider Gaming Mouse Starts Selling Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/sharkoon-darkglider-gaming-mousestarts-selling/16342.html June 20th, 2012

Teased before and unveiled during CeBIT 2012, Sharkoon's flagship gaming mouse, the DarkGlider, is released to markets. The mouse is armed with a high-resolution sensor, adjustable weight, teflon glides, and a mid-range price. Teased before and unveiled during CeBIT 2012, Sharkoon's flagship gaming mouse, the DarkGlider, is released to markets. The mouse is armed with a high-resolution sensor, adjustable weight, teflon glides, and a mid-range price.

While we understand that some people would prefer us to provide detailed documentation on all of our GPU internals, or be more active in Linux kernel community development discussions, we have made a decision to support Linux on our GPUs by leveraging NVIDIA common code, rather than the Linux common infrastructure. While this may not 9

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the DarkGlider for your gaming scenario, The mouse also comes with adjustable weight. Its underside tucks away a rack with four compartments that hold 3.1 and 3.7 g weights. In addition to its dry weight, you can customize the DarkGlider to weigh up to 150 g.

Sharkoon made the DarkGlider available at a suggested retail price of 39.99 EUR (S$64.22, US $50), which could pass off as a mid-range price, given the product's feature-set. The right-oriented mouse packs a total of six buttons, in addition to tracking resolution adjustments. These include the three main buttons (left, middle, right), two macro buttons at the thumb-rest, and two side-scroll/ macro buttons that can be used by tilting the scroll-wheel. Macros can be assigned by the included software, up to five macro layouts can be locally-stored on the mouse, thanks to its 256 KB memory.

Special attention is given to on-the-fly tracking resolution adjustments, with the designers spending not just three buttons on it (increase, decrease, reset), but also a tiny backlit LCD display that updates you on the tracking resolution in DPI. Speaking of resolution, the DarkGlider is driven by an Avago ADNS-9500 LaserSensor, with up to 6,000 DPI tracking resolution, with 11,750 FPS, which provide for 30 G acceleration, 1 ms response time, and 5 mm lift-off.

Sharkoon DarkGlider uses a standard USB connection, with 1000 reports/second. Its cable is 1.8 m long, and sleeved for durability. Along with the weights, Sharkoon packed the two sets of feet in a tin box. The mouse itself comes with a pouch, which makes it easy to carry around for LAN party gamers.

Albino CM Storm Trooper Launched as CM Storm Stryker Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/albino-cm-storm-trooper-launchedas-cm-storm-stryker/16340.html June 20th, 2012

On several recent occassions, we've spotted a white, windowed variant of CM Storm Trooper, about which the company's reps had been evasive, even avoiding calling it a "white Trooper". It turns out, that CM Storm had plans to carve out a different model, with a couple of changes to the original Trooper design. Enter CM Storm Stryker.

The belly of the beast reveals that Sharkoon opted for five interchangeable feet (selectable between ceramic and teflon), which maintain the right amount of drag for the desired responsiveness. Sensor resolution and surface friction aren't the only two factors that can let you customize

To every Star Wars nerd and sci-fi buff walking the face of the Earth, the term "stormtrooper" would ring bells, as being the white and black (but mostly white) armor-clad soldiers of the Empire. Cooler Master's gaming brand CM Storm may have gotten precariously close to getting into trouble with 20th Century Fox with its CM Storm Trooper ATX full-tower case. Had CM Storm ventured into making the case you see below, with the "CM Storm Trooper" name, it could have ruffled 10

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some feathers in Hollywood, especially given how Star Wars continues to be a cash-cow for merchandise makers.

Cooler Master designed the "new" CM Storm Stryker by whitewashing the CM Storm Trooper, and giving it a windowed side-panel. The company started selling the sidepanel separately for owners of the Trooper, for US $20, and even carved out a new variant of the Trooper that comes with it, instead of the original, with large fan vents covered with lavish use of mesh. The white color and side panel really are the only two things that set the Stryker apart from the Trooper.

Measuring 250 x 605.6 x 578.5 mm (WxHxD), the Stryker is an ATX full-tower made primarily of SECC/steel. It is big enough to accommodate motherboards in the XL-ATX form-factor, with as many as 9 expansion card slot bays. Its interiors are as white as most of its exteriors, it uses dashes of black at the right places to contrast (its perforated metal front consisting of drive bays and air intakes, a handle for LAN party-animals, meshes on the sides, and subtle aesthetic touches). Black is also used to good effect in the interiors, with the cable valves, and expansion slot covers.

The drive bay composition in the Stryker is completely flexible, with up to nine 5.25-inch exposed bays, up to eight 3.5-inch bays (divided into two 4-bay cages, which occupy three 5.25-inch bays each), up to thirteen 2.5-inch bays (converted from the two 3.5-inch cages), and a fixed hot-

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swap 2.5-inch SATA HDD/SSD slot-in bay near the frontpanel, called X-Dock. The motherboard tray has plenty of valved holes for cable-management, and a hole at the CPU socket area (for easy management of coolers with backplates).

The Stryker's front-panel, apart from the X-Dock, includes two USB 3.0 ports, two USB 2.0 ports, HD audio front-panel jacks, and an eSATA port. The front-panel is crowned with a rubberized handle, which makes carrying the case around easy.

Like most Cooler Master cases, cooling and ventilation is aplenty, with the Stryker. The case comes with provision for 120 mm two front-intake fans, provision for fans on the two 3.5-inch drive cages, a 200 mm fan on top (with detachable dust filter), a couple of 120 mm intakes on the bottom, and a 140 mm rear exhaust fan. It ships with two 120 mm front fans (white LED, 1200 RPM, 17 dBA), top 200 mm (1000 RPM, 23 dBA), and rear 140 mm (1200 RPM, 19 dBA). Available now, the albino CM Storm Trooper CM Storm Stryker is priced at 133 Euros (S$213).

2K Games releases Civilization V: Gods & Kings expansion pack Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/2k-games-releases-civilization-vgods--kings-expansion-pack/16341.html June 20th, 2012

2K Games and Firaxis Games have released Sid Meier's Civilization V: Gods & Kings, the first expansion pack for the acclaimed strategy game, adding several new features and types of gameplay. 2K Games and Firaxis Games have released Sid Meier's Civilization V: Gods & Kings, the first expansion pack for the 11

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acclaimed strategy game, adding several new features and types of gameplay.

Published by: VR-Zone June 20th, 2012

The most notable additions of this expansion are the reintroduction of religion and espionage, two elements that were in previous games but not in the original release of Civilization V. The religion feature allows players to choose a pantheon of gods and create Great Prophets to spread their customised religion across the world, while espionage allows users to spy on foreign cities, steal advanced technologies, rig elections, and perform coups.

Smartphone, tablet and laptop users are at risk of ill health and poor posture, according to a report by the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy.

The core game has also been expanded with new technologies, 27 new units, 13 new buildings, nine new Wonders, nine new civilizations, and three new scenarios, one focused on the Medieval period, the second detailing the fall of Rome, and the third providing a Victorian steampunk experience, which will give players a little something different to the more historic gameplay they are used to.

The survey of 2,010 office workers found that close to two thirds worked on mobile devices outside of office hours, with an average of two hours per day spent working on the devices outside office hours, which the Society claims can negatively affect the health of users.

Smartphone, tablet and laptop users are at risk of ill health and poor posture, according to a report by the UK's Chartered Society of Physiotherapy.

The problem largely centres on the poor posture of these so-called “screen slaves,” who go from desktop devices at work to mobile devices while commuting and once they get home. Smartphones, tablets and laptop computers all require hunching over the device, compared to the more ergonomic design of desktop computers, leading to neck, shoulder and back problems.

Other features include a reworked combat system and AI, which employs a more balanced army composition, an enhanced navy system that employs melee and ranged ships, and two new city-state types, Mercantile and Religious, for expanded questing and diplomacy. “We can’t wait for fans to get started on their quest to achieve world domination in all-new ways with Civilization V: Gods & Kings,” said Sid Meier, director of creative development at Firaxis Games. “Gods & Kings is one of the best expansions we’ve ever created, delivering countless hours of new gameplay experiences for Civ players around the world.” The expansion is available immediately for $29.99 in the US and will launch internationally on 22 June.

Smartphone, tablet and laptop workers face ill health and poor posture Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/smartphone-tablet-and-laptopworkers-face-ill-health-and-poor-posture/16339.html

Overworking is another issue, as employees are increasingly bringing their work home with them, thanks to the ease of access to work files, email, and networks via mobile devices. Staff are often attempting to divide their workload up over the day, but this can mean eating into lunch, travel and home time, which ultimately can lead to heightened pressure and resulting stress-related ailments. “While doing a bit of extra work at home may seem like a good short-term fix, if it becomes a regular part of your evening routine then it can lead to problems such as back and neck pain, as well as stress-related illness,” said Dr. Helena Johnson, chairwoman of the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy. “This is especially the case if you're using hand-held devices and not thinking about your posture. Talk to your employer if you are feeling under pressure.”

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Published by: VR-Zone

Of course, the issue of stress is more to do with work than mobile devices, but anyone who has used a smartphone, tablet or laptop for a long period will find it hard to deny that it can cause strain. Just like the age-old device for working on any type of computer, taking regular breaks is advised. Image Credit: Chartered Society of Physiotheraphy

First Look: ASUS ROG Maximus V Formula (Z77) with ThunderFX audio Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/first-look-asus-rog-maximus-vformula-z77-with-thunderfx-audio/16326.html June 20th, 2012

Here at VR-Zone, we hold ASUS's Republic of Gamers branded motherboards in high regard not only for their premium components, but also we know many exceptional individuals on the ROG team who toil on through cold Taiwanese nights and weekends, optimizing electrical traces on the PCB and fiddling with BIOS signal tweaks to deliver record breaking platforms for their users. Arriving almost two months after the initial Ivy Bridge Z77 launch, what does the belated Maximus V Formula bring to the (bench) table?

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Facebook buys facial recognition firm Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/facebook-buys-facial-recognitionfirm/16338.html June 20th, 2012

Facebook has bought facial recognition firm Face.com for up to $60 million, according to sources close to the company. Facebook is to pay between $55 million and $60 million for the company, lower than the up to $100 million suggested by early reports, and the deal will involve cash payments and a transfer of Facebook shares, the exact quantity of which is unknown. Facebook already employs the technology developed by Face.com to identify users and tag them in photos, but Face.com also offers similar facial recognition services to other firms. This deal will likely see the technology becoming exclusive to Facebook or licensed out for a fee, the latter of which seems unlikely, given Facebook will want to tout this feature over rivals like Google+.

Face.com was set up in 2009 in Israel and has just 11 employees, all of whom will now join the team at Facebook. “By working with Facebook directly, and joining their team, we’ll have more opportunities to build amazing products that will be employed by consumers – that’s all we’ve ever wanted to do,” said Face.com in a statement. Facial recognition software previously got Facebook into trouble, however, due to concerns about user privacy. Uproar last year forced the company to provide an easier method to opt out of the feature, but clearly Facebook believes it is worth the hassle for the long-term viability of its popular social network. The deal is expected to close within the next few weeks.

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Quick look at CommunicAsia 2012 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/quick-look-atcommunicasia-2012/16337.html June 20th, 2012

While this year's CommunicAsia 2012 is said to be bigger and better than previous years, some of the big name companies such as Samsung, LG, Nokia, Microsoft, and NTT DoCoMo are no longer participating in this information and communications technology (ICT) exhibition and conference. But if it's any consolation, Huawei is showcasing their products including the Ascend P1 Android smartphone, while ZTE has announced their LTE phone. Panasonic also unveiled the ToughPad at CommunicAsia 2012.

The Huawei Wingle E355 claims to be the world's first Wi-Fi dongle that supports HSPA+ and Wi-Fi 802.11a/b/g/n. You can insert your 3.5G SIM card, and there is also a microSD card slot for you to share data wirelessly. it supports up to five devices simultaneously, Windows or Mac. There is also an optional power adapter if you do not want to plug the Wingle to your computer. Also spotted at the Huawei booth:-

Huawei has a prominent booth right in the middle within the exhibition halls and among the range of products showcased, we spotted the Ascend P1. The Ascend P1 was announced at CES earlier this year (together with the P1 S), featuring dual-core 1.5GHz TI OMAP 4460 Cortex-A9 processor, 4.3inch super AMOLED (960 x 540) touchscreen with Corning Gorilla Glass, 8-megapixel BSI rear-facing camera, comes with 1670mAh battery and runs Android 4.0 ICS. Pricing and availability will be announced closer to retail.

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Cubitek Mini ICE ITX Enclosure Review Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/cubitek-mini-ice-itx-enclosurereview/15526.html June 20th, 2012

The ITX form factor is steadily gaining mainstream affections, with recent feature-filled motherboards like ASUS's P8Z77-I Deluxe boasting of everything including overclocking abilities. How does Cubitek's latest extruded aluminium enclosure fair in our water-cooled HTPC build? Introduction Cubitek is one of the newcomers to the scene, with the Taiwanese company leveraging on their decades of experience to create more ambitious enclosure designs for the upper echelons of the market. One of their newest product ranges is the brushed aluminium ICE series, featuring different models from mini-ITX to HPTX sizes. In this article we will attempt to build a watercooled mini-ITX HTPC, and see whether the Cubitek Mini ICE is any good.

Item Mini ICE Name Item CB-ICINumber B104

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Color External Black Internal Original Aluminum Color Size Case W 230 H Dimension338.5 D (mm) 363 Carton W 285 Size H 390 D (mm) 447 Weight Net 4 Weight (KG) Gross 5 Weight (KG) Material Aluminum M/B Mini ITX Type Drive 5.25" 1 Bay Drive ( Exposed Bay ) 3.5" 4 Drive ( Hidden ) Bay 2.5" 2 Drive ( Converted Bay by one 3.5" drive bay ) I/O USB L:700(mm) Panel 3.0*2 USB 2.0*2 Audio*1 L:800(mm) Mic*1 Expansion2 Slots Cooling Top 140(mm) 3pin; Outflow 49.05 System Fan L:250(mm) CFM;21.35dBA ( Blue LED ) Bottom 140(mm) N/A Fan ( Optional ) PSU Standard ATX PSU ( Max. 160(mm) ) MaximumVGA Max. Compatibility 340(mm) long CPU Max. Cooler 90(mm) height Externals The outer layers of the Mini ICE enclosure is made from extrusion aluminium, giving it structural strength and corrosion resistance. In front, a pair of Power/Reset buttons 16

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Published by: VR-Zone

and Blue/Red LED activity indicators for Power/HDD can be found, together with a pre-installed 5.25-inch black bezel for the only external drive bay.

Four minature thumbscrews hold the side panels on each side.

Cubitek have also modeled their logo badge and kept it small in order not to spoil the minimalist look of their case.

On top, we can see a large 140mm fan exhaust cutout and a row of I/O ports including USB 3.0 (blue). We're pleased the designers have gold plated the audio ports to keep the audio signal fidelity high.

From the back, the Mini ICE isn't too different from the typical enthusiast ITX case, with two slots for that PCIe graphics card and a pair of holes for water cooling piping. Annoyingly, a standard ATX power supply is to be mounted on top of the motherboard, which makes the installation of tall HSF towers impossible despite the case being fairly wide.

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Hi-Fi like anti-vibration feet can be found at the bottom of the case, which is a nice touch.

Microsoft's Surface Tablet concludes major announcement Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/microsoft-s-surface-tabletconcludes-major-announcement/16335.html June 20th, 2012

Published by: VR-Zone

The tablet is 9.3mm in thickness, and features USB 2.0 connectivity. It has full magnesium case (VaporMg), and weighs 576 grams. It boasts a full HD display that supports Clear Type. Naturally, you would expect it to have access to Windows apps. An optically bonded display provides a more natural writing/touch experience. It’s optimized for Windows 8, and has built-in dual 2x2 Memo antennas. There’s a built in kickstand, and a 3mm thick cover that converts into a multi-touch keyboard. HDMI is built-in, and so are the front and rear cameras.

As for pricing, the Windows RT version (32/64 GB) is comparable to other ARM tablets (Asus Transformer Prime 32GB goes for about $500). The Pro version (Intel based, 64/128 GB) is priced in the range of Ultrabooks (~$700+). The RT version will launch alongside Windows 8's launch date, but the Pro version won't come around until three months after.

The major announcement has concluded, and the result? A Microsoft tablet called “Surface” that runs Windows 8. Let’s just ignore the bigwigs’ speeches and dive right into what matters, and that’s the specs and features of the Surface tablet.

Other nifty features include a Touch Cover that turns the tablet different colors when activated. The Touch Cover

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itself has an accelerometer built in and you can personalize the colors of the Touch Cover as it comes with seven layers. That’s it for Microsoft’s major announcement. Source: engadget.com via Live Coverage Official Website: http://www.microsoft.com/surface/en/ us/default.aspx Official Press Release: http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/ news/press/2012/jun12/06-18announce.aspx

Samsung Galaxy Note II to drop this October Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/samsung-galaxy-note-ii-to-dropthis-october/16334.html June 20th, 2012

Rumors out of Korea are that Samsung will release a successor to the popular Galaxy Note—smartphone-tablet hybrid Android device. It is very likely that Samsung will dub their Galaxy Note successor as the Galaxy Note II. What is even more intriguing is that the Galaxy Note II may be a derivative of the Galaxy SIII—with the Note II retaining most of the S III’s specs except the screen size.

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Of course this means that Samsung intends to compete with Apple’s iPhone 5 with their Note II. The iPhone 5 will boast a Retina display and iOS 6, and the Note II will have a tablet-esque screen size and Jelly Bean. Regardless of the competitive intents of the two tech companies, hopefully both will deliver outstanding products that won’t disappoint consumers.

Australia has new R18+ video games rating Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/australia-has-new-r18-video-gamesrating/16333.html June 20th, 2012

On January 1, 2013 Australians that have been deprived of ESRB mature-rated games will be able to legally obtain them. The Australian House and Senate have passed a bill that created an R18+ tag for video games.

On January 1, 2013 Australians that have been deprived of ESRB mature-rated games will be able to legally obtain them over the counter. The Australian House and Senate have passed a bill that created an R18+ tag for video games. In the past, video games that exceeded an MA15+ tag meant that they could not be sold in Australia. Titles such as Mortal Kombat, Syndicate, and Grand Theft Auto were either banned or had to be edited to conform to Australian laws. Rumors out of Korea are that Samsung will release a successor to the popular Galaxy Note—smartphone-tablet hybrid Android device. It is very likely that Samsung will dub their Galaxy Note successor as the Galaxy Note II. What is even more intriguing is that the Galaxy Note II may be a derivative of the Galaxy SIII—with the Note II retaining most of the S III’s specs except the screen size. The current Galaxy Note has a 5.3’’ screen, but according to sources familiar with the matter the Note II’s screen will be bigger. Adding to that, the Note II will utilize an unbreakable plane (UBP) display, which is a precursor to the flexible display.

For a long time, various groups and lobbyists have been trying to persuade the government to approve legislations allowing higher ESRB rated games Australia, and the fruit of their work has come to be. Starting next year, Aussies can perform fatality moves in Mortal Kombat—and do so legally.

Solutions to Adobe Flash 11.3 issues in Firefox browser Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/solutions-to-adobe-flash-11.3-issuesin-firefox-browser/16332.html June 20th, 2012

The Galaxy Note II will run Android Jelly Bean out of the box, and the launch date is rumored to be around October. Anyone that’s hot on the tail of anything iPhone will notice that the Note II’s launch date may overlap the iPhone 5’s launch date.

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Users who have upgraded to Flash 11.3 and are using Firefox may be experiencing crashes or no contents loading when browsing sites such as YouTube. Firefox and Adobe have not been able to resolve the problem, but there’s a rather simple solution. Users who have upgraded to Flash 11.3 and are using Firefox may be experiencing crashes or no contents loading when browsing sites such as YouTube. Firefox and Adobe have not been able to resolve the problem, but there’s a simple solution. Firefox browsers that are currently running on Windows 7 and Vista that experiences crashes/or no contents on flash media sites should downgrade to Adobe’s previous version of flash. This, of course, will only be temporary as Mozilla announced that they are working closely with Adobe to “diagnose and address these issues.” Approximately a quarter of the world’s internet browsing are done with Firefox, and many multimedia sites utilize Adobe’s Flash technology. So it's safe to say the AdobeFirefox Flash issues will be fixed soon. However, there is no ETA on how long it will take for Mozilla and Adobe to fix this problem, but in the meantime Firefox users can find a list of temporary solutions here.

Google removes terrorism videos, refuses to comply with censorship requests Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/google-removes-terrorism-videosrefuses-to-comply-with-censorship-requests/16331.html June 20th, 2012

Google has revealed that it removed 640 videos from YouTube that allegedly promoted terrorism after receiving a request from the UK's Association of Police Officers, but it refused to give in to censorship demands by a number of the world's governments. Google has revealed that it removed 640 videos from YouTube that allegedly promoted terrorism after receiving a request from the UK's Association of Police Officers, but it refused to give in to censorship demands by a number of the world's governments. The videos in question were linked with five accounts suspected of promoting terrorism and were found to violate YouTube's Community Guidelines. The accounts were terminated and all videos associated with them were deleted. It is not clear if all 640 videos contained pro-terrorism messages or if only a select number of them did, but all of them have now been removed, according to Google's latest transparency report on government requests.

Despite Google's agreement in this case and several others, it refused to cooperate with requests by a number of governments, and labelled many of the requests as “troubling” and “alarming.” “Unfortunately, what we’ve seen over the past couple years has been troubling, and today is no different. When we started releasing this data in 2010, we also added annotations with some of the more interesting stories behind the numbers. We noticed that government agencies from different countries would sometimes ask us to remove political content that our users had posted on our services. We hoped this was an aberration. But now we know it’s not,” said Dorothy Chou, Senior Policy Analyst at Google. “This is the fifth data set that we’ve released. And just like every other time before, we’ve been asked to take down political speech. It’s alarming not only because free expression is at risk, but because some of these requests come from countries you might not suspect—Western democracies not typically associated with censorship.” Examples given include a request by regulators in Spain to remove 270 search results for blogs and newspaper articles referencing individuals and public figures, while a Polish public institution asked Google to remove links to a website that criticised it. Google did not comply with these requests. Other requests that Google refused to give in to included a Canadian request to remove a YouTube video of a man urinating on his Canadian passport and flushing it down the toilet, a Pakistani request to remove six YouTube videos that satirised the Pakistan army, and US requests to remove a blog that allegedly defamed a law enforcement official and to remove 1,400 YouTube videos for alleged harassment.

Foxconn holds one of the keys to Windows 8's success Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/foxconn-holds-one-of-the-keys-towindows-8-s-success/16330.html June 20th, 2012

Many tech savvy individuals doubt Windows 8 will make a huge impact on current PC market at launch, but Foxconn thinks that their manufacturing proficiency and future 20

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innovations may hold one of the keys to Windows 8’s success.

Many tech savvy individuals doubt Windows 8 will make a huge impact on current PC market at launch, but Foxconn thinks that their manufacturing proficiency and future innovations may hold one of the keys to Windows 8’s success. It’s clear that Windows 8 is Microsoft’s attempt at utilizing touchscreens for an enhanced users experience on the PC, but as of right now much of the world’s PC users doesn’t have a touchscreen PC. Therefore, not only is a transition to a touchscreen based PC a drastic change in user interface, but also people will have to invest in new technology to fully utilize Windows 8.

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demands for components needed in Windows 8. However, even if Foxconn manages to wow consumers with super cheap Windows 8 optimized products, critics and average consumers have yet to rave or shut the door on Microsoft’s next gen PC platform.

What are the keys to unlocking Windows 8 again? Perhaps it’s the cheap labor needed to manufacture those “cuttingedge technology.”

Intel reaches supercomputing milestone with Xeon E5 processors Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/intel-reaches-supercomputingmilestone-with-xeon-e5-processors/16329.html June 20th, 2012

Intel is taking the supercomputing world by storm with its Xeon E5 processors, which broke a record for the fastest new processing technology to be adopted by supercomputers. Intel is taking the supercomputing world by storm with its Xeon E5 processors, which broke a record for the fastest new processing technology to be adopted by supercomputers. Foxconn’s chairman, Terry Gou, said that Windows 8 utilizes “cutting-edge technology” in areas such as machinery, optics, material, software, and battery. However, current OEMs may not be ready for an influx of demands in up to date technology that can make the most of all of Windows 8’s “cutting-edge technology.” Gou went on to say that his company has made progress in the areas of machinery, optical technology, and energysaving battery technology. Foxconn currently employs people in Japan and Taiwan to work with display suppliers such as Sharp and Chimei Innolux to research and develop low-radiation, high-definition, and eye-control display technologies. Although Foxconn has a lot of resources within the manufacturing and research sector, Gou is quick to also note that small to medium sized high definition panels will be short supply at Windows 8’s launch. Gou forecasts that the company will be able to meet demands of consumers for touch based high definition displays within 3-5 years.

The milestone is recorded in the 39th edition of the Top500 supercomputers in the world, with 77 percent of newlyentered monster machines powered by Intel processors. Even when including older entries Intel rules a whopping 74 percent of the top 500, with 372 Intel-powered systems on the list. Intel stopped shy of the first three spots, which run on Power BQC and SPARC64 processors, but the fourth, fifth, ninth and tenth on the list are all powered by Xeon. Intel's highest entry at fourth place is the SuperMUC supercomputer at LRZ in Germany, delivering 2.9 petaFLOPs of performance, which makes it the most powerful computer in Europe and the largest installation based on Intel's Xeon range.

If Foxconn can pump out most of the world’s iPhone demands, then there’s no doubt that they can meet 21

June 20th, 2012

Published by: VR-Zone

The news was revealed by Max Schafer, former Blizzard employee and co-founder of Runic Games, which now makes the Diablo-esque Torchlight series. “When I was working at Blizzard a million years ago we were working on Diablo 3 and it was an MMO,” Schafer said in an interview with I.Eat.Games. “We were going to do the Diablo version of World of Warcraft.”

Intel plans to deliver high computing performance beyond the supercomputer market with the new Xeon Phi range, due later this year, which will eventually cater for enterprise datacentres and workstations as well as supercomputing. Cray will be one of the first supercomputer firms to embrace the technology.

The revelation goes a long way to explain why Blizzard requires users to be online for Diablo 3, though obviously piracy prevention was another major motivation, as was forcing people to be exposed to its cash cow: the real-money auction house.

“We are very excited to announce that our next-generation supercomputer code-named ‘Cascade’ will be available with the Intel Xeon Phi coprocessors, giving Cray customers the ability to push the limits of research and discovery,” said Peg Williams, SVP of high performance computing systems at Cray. “Our Cascade system will feature some of the most advanced and highly innovative HPC technologies ever put into a Cray supercomputer. Combining these features with industry-leading Intel Xeon processors and the new Intel Xeon Phi coprocessors will result in a very compelling system for HPC centers around the world.” Intel is aiming to reach exascale-level computation by 2018, which is the next stage up from the current petascale and will revolutionise the processing speed of supercomputers around the world. The company considers its Xeon range a pivotal part of this advancement and is investing heavily in developing new architecture and fabric in order to achieve its goal.

Diablo 3 was originally an MMO Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/diablo-3-was-originally-anmmo/16328.html June 20th, 2012

Blizzard's popular hack-and-slash role-playing game Diablo 3 was originally intended to be a massively multiplayer online (MMO) game, explaining the internet requirement and the auction house. Blizzard's popular hack-and-slash role-playing game Diablo 3 was originally intended to be a massively multiplayer online (MMO) game, explaining the internet requirement and the auction house.

An auction house is a typical element of MMOs, including Blizzard's World of Warcraft, and while the real-money element takes it a monumental step forward (or in many eyes: backward), it shows that Blizzard kept a few parts of its intended MMO experience. The MMO plans also shed some light on the substantial development period for the game. It spent a massive 11 years in development, and clearly part of this was due to the change of plans from an MMO to a more typical single-player encounter, with a bit of multiplayer to spice it up. It is not clear why Blizzard changed track, but it was likely a wise move, given the disappointing results of BioWare's recent MMO attempt, Star Wars: The Old Republic, which the studio is considering making free-to-play. Obviously Blizzard's experience with World of Warcraft would have helped considerably with World of Diablo or Diablo Online, but it may also have cannibalised its existing subscriber base. It is certainly interesting, however, to muse about what a Diablo MMO could have been like, and to speculate if Blizzard might deliver one in years to come. At the very least, Schafer has hinted that a Torchlight MMO may be on the horizon.

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June 20th, 2012

Published by: VR-Zone June 20th, 2012

Today is the big day, the “major” announcement by Microsoft. Despite the short notice, there has been a long list of speculations as to what this announcement may be about. Some rumors are just plain ridiculous, but the majority of the gossips seem to be landing upon a Windows based tablet.

We are not part of their announcement says Barnes & Noble Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/we-are-not-part-of-theirannouncement-says-barnes--noble/16327.html June 20th, 2012

Microsoft and Barnes & Noble are not going to announce a joint tablet venture. According to theverge.com, Barnes & Noble has reached out to the press to subdue speculations that they are involved in Microsoft’s major announcement.

Today is the big day, the “major” announcement by Microsoft. Despite the short notice, there has been a long list of speculations as to what this announcement may be about. Some rumors are just plain ridiculous, but the majority of the gossips seem to be landing upon a Windows based tablet. Previous rumors stipulated that Microsoft and Nokia eloped and produced some sort of Windows tablet, however, that rumor may have changed direction—not totally, but a little off course. Sources have told techcrunch.com that the Windows tablet partnership is actually between Microsoft and Barnes & Noble.

We’re only hours away from what may be the biggest Microsoft related news of the year, or the biggest PR flop. Either way, Barnes & Noble will not be a part of the hype and a spokesperson for them has specifically stated that “we are not part of their announcement.”

Microsoft may announce a Windows Nook tablet Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/microsoft-may-announce-awindows-nook-tablet/16324.html

The two companies announced a “strategic partnership” with each other in April. In a joint venture with Barnes & Noble, Microsoft invested $300 million into “Newco” for a 17.6% stake. Barnes & Noble’s Nook e-reader/tablet device is currently running Android, and the upcoming announcement may reveal that future Nook devices are to run Windows instead—or a Windows “Newco” e-reader/ tablet.

RIM targets Singapore's military servicemen with camera-less smartphone Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/rim-targets-singapore-s-militaryservicemen-with-camera-less-smartphone/16323.html

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June 20th, 2012

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June 20th, 2012

If RIM is failing to catch they eyes of regular consumers, then perhaps they should go after a more specific group of people. RIM has launched a camera-less BlackBerry Curve 9360 aimed at restoring the social life of Singapore’s young people of the armed forces.

RIM has not done much to wow the world, but perhaps helping to restore a military serviceman’s social life will help win the favors consumers in the future.

Apple stores meeting, reasons unknown Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/apple-stores-meeting-reasonsunknown/16322.html June 20th, 2012

RIM is failing to catch regular consumers’ eyes, but perhaps they can go after a more specific group of people. RIM has launched a camera-less BlackBerry Curve 9360 aimed at restoring the social life of Singapore’s young people of the armed forces.

A companywide Apple retail stores meeting has been called upon by Apple officials. Sources close to the matter are unsure of the intention behind the meeting, but if Apple’s reputation for building up excitement and anticipation with any gathering remains true then perhaps there may be something exciting in store for Apple’s retail stores.

Due to security reasons, the Singapore’s Ministry of Defense does not allow their young military enlistees to have a camera phone within any military confines. Hence, a camera-less device is certainly a solution to this dilemma. This bright idea has already been thought of and employed with Apple’s camera-less iPhone from M1 before. However, the camera-less iPhone has since been removed from the M1 mobile phones site, so RIM can now flaunt their camera-less Curve 9360 without having to worry too much about Apple. Moreover, this product may be attractive since it’s cheaper than an iPhone, and after two years of military service the person can switch back to an iPhone if he wants to.

Update 1: Every Apple Store Employee Just Got A $4-PerHour Raise Update 2: Apple Will Spend ~0.004% Of Its Cash On A Generous Raise For Retail Employees A companywide Apple retail stores meeting has been called upon by Apple officials. Sources close to the matter are unsure of the intention behind the meeting, but if Apple’s reputation for building up excitement and anticipation with any gathering remains true then perhaps there may be something exciting in store for Apple’s retail stores. An Apple store in Boston is renting out a theater for 200 employees for this meeting, and insiders reported to appleinsider.com that the meeting will need “a projector, 24

June 20th, 2012

audio for the presenter and also computer hookup/audio.” Naturally, this may mean that the meeting may be held using live video/audio feeds from Apple’s headquarter in Cupertino, California. However, it also seems like not all the Apple stores are having the meeting at the same time, which goes against what a live feed is all about. Hence, there aren’t any succinct patterns to put our finger onto what the meeting may be about. It is also not clear whether or not Apple’s 200+ stores must all hold the same type of meeting. Gary Allen of ifoapplestore.com sent an email to appleinsider.com stating that an off-site meeting that includes most, if not all, employees is “not common”. He does, however, think that the meeting may have something to do with introducing Apple’s new head of retail—John Browett. Hopefully, this national Apple store meeting will bring about more than just introducing a person—perhaps a “budget 7’’ iPad to hit the shelf” type of announcement? Let’s just wait and see.

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“Some police forces believe the problem is too large to tackle,” Ross Anderson, lead author of the study, told the BBC. “In fact, a small number of gangs lie behind many incidents and locking them up would be far more effective than telling the public to fit an anti-phishing toolbar or purchase anti-virus software. Cybercrooks impose disproportionate costs on society.” Anderson compares cybercrime to a swamp, stating that the only way to clean it up is to drain it by arresting the crooks. He credits, however, the FBI for doing most of the “heavy lifting” when it comes to actually going after online criminals. Anderson’s solutions to the uneven allocation of funds to different areas of cybercrimes management is simple, make it even. Furthermore, he believes that legislations that protect online consumers should be on the governments’ agenda. Online payment and banking fraud has led many to avoid online transactions altogether, therefore, indirectly affecting the economy.

Governments not spending enough on putting cyber criminals behind bars Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/governments-not-spending-enoughon-putting-cyber-criminals-behind-bars/16321.html June 20th, 2012

A recent study conducted through a partnership between the UK, Germany, the Netherlands, and USA revealed that governments spent more money on fighting cybercrimes through software rather than allocating more money into arresting the people behind those crimes.

A recent study conducted through a partnership between the UK, Germany, the Netherlands, and USA revealed that governments spent more money on fighting cybercrimes through software rather than allocating more money into arresting the people behind those crimes. According to the BBC, the colleagues working on the study considered all “main types of cybercrime”, which includes “online payment and banking fraud”. The study found out that governments spend less than £10 million out of £640 million annually on putting people carrying out online crimes behind bars. Misallocation of funds led authorities to concentrate more on surveillance rather than actually going after suspects. 25

June 22nd, 2012

Published by: VR-Zone

VR-Zone.com | Tech News for the Geeks! VR-Zone | Stuff for the Geeks is a bi-weekly publication covering the latest gadgets and stuff for the geeks.

Nintendo and Namco Bandai team up for Super Smash Bros. games Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/nintendo-and-namco-bandai-teamup-for-super-smash-bros.-games/16386.html June 22nd, 2012

Nintendo has teamed up with Namco Bandai to work on the latest games in the Super Smash Bros. series, with two titles planned, one for the Wii U and one for the 3DS. Nintendo has teamed up with Namco Bandai to work on the latest games in the Super Smash Bros. series, with two titles planned, one for the Wii U and one for the 3DS. Masahiro Sakurai, head of game studio Sora and director of the popular fighting games, revealed that work had begun on the new Super Smash Bros. titles, explaining that he wanted to curb speculation by announcing the games now so that there is greater freedom during development. “The project has just gotten started,” Sakurai said. “Bear in mind that not only are we developing two titles simultaneously, but we announced the project before we even started actual development, so I'm afraid we will likely have to keep you waiting for quite a while.”

Masaya Kobayashi from Namco Bandai announced that they are bringing on board their best developers, including Yoshito Higuichi, producer and director of the “Tales” series, Tetsuya Akatsuka, producer and director of Mobile Suit Gundam: Extreme Vs., the art and sound director of the SoulCalibur series, and the main development team behind the Tekken series, with more top talent expected to join the production team over time. Since development is still in its early stages not much is known about the games and how they will play, but they are expected to feature some interactivity options for those who purchase both titles. Potentially this might mean the ability to unlock a character in one game and port them over to the other, with possible exclusive characters limited to each game as an enticement to buy both. The Wii U is rumoured to release on 21 December and it is doubtful if the latest Super Smash Bros. game will be ready in time. The 3DS title is likely in a similar boat.

Samsung investigating exploding Galaxy S III smartphone Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/samsung-investigating-explodinggalaxy-s-iii-smartphone/16385.html June 22nd, 2012

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June 22nd, 2012

Published by: VR-Zone

Samsung is investigating an incident where one of its Galaxy S III smartphones exploded in a user's car, raising fears over potential overheating problems.

this incident was an issue of overheating, however, putting it down to massive external pressure.

Samsung is investigating an incident where one of its Galaxy S III smartphones exploded in a user's car, raising fears over potential overheating problems.

Samsung is not alone with overheating fears. Apple's ambitiously named “new iPad” reportedly suffered overheating problems when it launched in March.

A user in Dublin, Ireland reported that during a commute he noticed white flame and sparks coming from the device before it exploded on the dashboard of his car.

The Samsung Galaxy S III launched in Europe at the end of May and in the US yesterday. It makes its debut in South Korea on Monday, but reports of safety issues could hamper initial sales.

“The phone burned from the inside out,” the user wrote in a post at popular Irish forum Boards.ie. “Burned through the plastic and melted my case to my phone. The phone kept working but without any signal.” Samsung claims that its initial investigation found no fault with the phone, but it intended to conduct further investigations. The user admits that the fault may have been caused by a combination of the car mount and the car's heating system. The pictures provided by the user show scorch marks at the bottom of the phone, with the battery appearing untouched, suggesting it may not be the reason for the incident. “That could have burned the side of my face or through my pocket and my leg, or set fire to my bed,” the user said. “Its very dangerous.”

Microsoft may be working on own-branded Windows Phone 8 smartphone Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/microsoft-may-be-working-on-ownbranded-windows-phone-8-smartphone/16384.html June 22nd, 2012

Microsoft is rumoured to be working on an own-branded smartphone to help with initial growth of its Windows Phone 8 operating system. Microsoft is rumoured to be working on an own-branded smartphone to help with initial growth of its Windows Phone 8 operating system. “Our industry sources tell us that Microsoft may be working with a contract manufacturer to develop their own handset for Windows Phone 8,” said Rick Sherlund, analyst at Nomura, according to a Reuters report. Sherlund added that it is unclear if this will be a reference device or a handset that is intended to hit the market. Microsoft's response was ambiguous. It said it is a “big believer in our hardware partners,” suggesting it is reluctant to launch its own device for fear of driving off its partners, which include Nokia, Samsung, HTC and Huawei.

Despite not admitting fault over this issue, Samsung gave the Irish user a new phone and promised “free stuff” as compensation. This appears to be the first report of an overheating problem with Samsung's latest flagship model, but a previous incident with a spare Galaxy S II battery in March, when a Korean schoolboy claimed that it exploded in his back pocket, may cause users some concern. Samsung denied that 2

June 22nd, 2012

However, Microsoft revealed earlier this week that it was working on its own tablet computer, the Surface, so the company is clearly not shying away from the hardware market. Microsoft's comments about hardware partners may even relate to the alleged deal with a “contract manufacturer” to develop the new device. The company unveiled Windows Phone 8 earlier this week, touting a number of new and improved features, including a revamped start screen, dual-core processor support, a digital wallet, cloud integration, and a shared core with Windows 8.

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Sixty-one percent of Brazil’s smartphones run Android, so it’s quite puzzling why HTC hasn’t been able to capture more market shares. HTC’s inability to capture Brazilian customers may be more due to its commitment to producing mid-range to high end Android devices, rather than its inability to make Android phones. Perhaps if HTC were to produce more budget minded Android devices for Brazilians, it would retain an active role in Brazil’s smartphone market. Alas, nothing else can be said except, adeus.

RT Surface battery life may be shorter than the iPad Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/rt-surface-battery-life-may-beshorter-than-the-ipad/16382.html June 22nd, 2012

Windows Phone 8 is due out in Autumn, with or without a Microsoft smartphone.

HTC pulls out of Brazil Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/htc-pulls-out-of-brazil/16383.html June 22nd, 2012

The Surface may come with a nifty keypad, a touch cover, and a kickstand, but does it come with a better battery life compared to the iPad? Computer World’s Gregg Keizer thinks the Surface won’t match up to the iPad in battery life.

HTC has announced earlier this week that it will cease operations in Brazil, and although the news won’t have a huge impact on the smartphone market in the region, it will put some people out of a job.

HTC has announced earlier this week that it will cease operations in Brazil, and although the news won’t have a huge impact on the smartphone market in the region, it will put some people out of a job. The HTC Wildfire S (Android) and the HTC Ultimate (WP) are the only two smartphones that HTC sells in Brazil, and competition from LG, Samsung, and Nokia have made it hard for HTC to establish itself. After several years of steady decline in market share, HTC’s spokesperson addresses the press by saying: “After analyzing the sales numbers, we have decided to pull out of the Brazilian market.”

The Surface may come with a nifty keypad, a Touch Cover, and a kickstand, but does it come with a better battery life compared to the iPad? Computer World’s Gregg Keizer thinks the Surface won’t match up to the iPad in battery life. The surface is listed with 31.4Wh of battery power as compared to the iPad’s 42.5Wh. The battery capacity of the RT Surface is 25% less than the iPad’s, which puts the Surface at about two-and-a-half-hours less (7.5 hours) than the iPad’s battery life (10 hours). Although evidence may suggest the estimate is accurate, iFixit’s Kyle Wiens added that there are still too many “unknowns” with regard to the Surface. Hence, we should all wait until a consumer product is available before assuming the actual battery life.

The news may not be problematic to many Brazilians, but for those that do own an HTC handset, they can count on HTC to continue to provide support, repairs, and replacements for existing customers.

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June 22nd, 2012

Windows Phone 8 to have data usage and cloud friendly features Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/windows-phone-8-to-have-datausage-and-cloud-friendly-features/16381.html June 22nd, 2012

Running on the clouds may be one of Windows Phone 8’s main focuses. Insider Paul Thurrott found evidence that “Data Smart” and traffic compression are Microsoft’s methods for more efficient use of data on Windows Phone 8.

Published by: VR-Zone June 22nd, 2012

Today, in the continuation of our series on the Internet Protocol, we talk about IPv4, binary and the end of the internet as it has existed for the past 30 years. Last time, we talked about the formation of the Internet Protocol, the addressing system that allows the internet to function. Without the Internet Protocol, communication between computers would be impossible, as routers would have no idea which computer to send a particular signal to. Today, we’re going to talk about the previous version of the Internet Protocol and still the most widely used version, known as IPv4. IPv4 Codified in 1981, IPv4 is the most widespread version of the Internet Protocol. When first introduced, it was believed that the number of addresses would be more than enough for the needs of the nascent Internet; the engineers who came up with the protocol suite could not have imagined the explosion of personal computers or mobile devices that would connect to the internet. In 1981, the 32-bit addresses used to identify various computers seemed to be more than enough.

Running on the clouds may be one of Windows Phone 8’s main focuses. Insider Paul Thurrott found evidence that “Data Smart” and traffic compression are Microsoft’s methods for more efficient use of data on Windows Phone 8. Data Smart will enable users to manage their data by keeping track of their usage by billing cycles, and breaks down data usage based on carrier data vs Wi-Fi. Essentially, Data Smart is a Windows Phone 8 built-in data meter that may help users from data overages—thus, preventing a hefty bill at the end of the month. Internet Explorer 10 mobile browser will also have a data usage friendly feature—basically a proxy-type service that compresses web traffic and thereby reducing data usage. It’s nothing new, Silk Browser on the Kindle uses the same type of technology, but nonetheless it’s an added bonus for people who browse the internet a lot on their phone. An unlimited data plan is hard to come by with current major carriers, and some of the built in data management features in Windows Phone 8 will help keep users online longer without having to worry too much about paying extra for data overages.

The Internet Protocol: Past, Present, and Future - Part 2 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/the-internet-protocol-past-presentand-future--part-2/16376.html

But what is a 32-bit number? To answer that, I need to explain a little bit about how computers operate on an electrical level for those who don’t know. To those who know how a computer counts and what binary is, feel free to skip the next paragraph, or go ahead and read it for a quick refresher course. Computers operate by sending electrical signals through various circuits on microchips and silicon boards. The electrical signal has two possibilities: if the circuit is open, then no current flows, and its signal is “off,” whereas if the circuit is closed, an electrical current flows through it, and the signal is “on.” These two possibilities are represented by a base-2 number system, called binary; on is 1 and off is 0. Computers use this numbering system to count by using millions of circuits; for example, instead of counting “1, 2, 3, 4, 5,” binary counts as “1, 10, 11, 100, 101.” Each of the ones and zeros is known as a “bit,” and 8 bits make up a “byte.” A 32-bit number, therefore, is a binary number with 32 ones or zeros. For example, Google’s IP address, 74.125.130.106, can also be written as 1001010.01111101.10000010.01101010, with 4 octets of bits (or 4 bytes) separated by periods (purely to make it human-readable). Now that we’ve had a refresher on binary and how the IPv4 address is constructed, you might be able to see the main problem with this addressing scheme; we’re running out of addresses. With any addressing system, there’s going to be a finite number of addresses; in the case of IPv4, there are nearly 4.3 billion addresses. With 7 billion people on the planet, this means that even if every person were given just a single address, we would be three billion addresses short. The biggest problem is this: People don’t have just one device. Today’s internet user is connected through a phone, a tablet, maybe even a computer or two. The last blocks of IPv4 addresses were recently assigned to the regional address 4

June 22nd, 2012

Published by: VR-Zone

issuing authorities, and it’s projected that IPv4 will be fully tapped out in Europe and North America by August of this year, with Asia, Africa, and South America following within two years. Once all of the IPv4 addresses are used up, that’s it. No more growth is possible on the Internet using IPv4, because there are no more unique IP addresses available. We have been aware of this problem for years, and a solution has been created. But its implementation among ISPs and various routers around the internet has been slow. That solution is called IPv6, and it will be the subject of the final part of our series on the Internet Protocol.

Sapphire Changes Upcoming HD 7970 Toxic and VaporX Models to HD 7970 GHz Edition Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/sapphire-changes-upcominghd-7970-toxic-and-vapor-x-models-to-hd-7970-ghz-edition/16379.html June 22nd, 2012

What's in a name change? Well, apart from ≥1 GHz GPU and ≥1.5 GHz memory clock speeds, the SKU introduces PowerTune with Boost, a feature touted to be comparable to NVIDIA GPU Boost, although it functions in a markedly different way, as we found out, in our review. The shift to the new SKU could also give Sapphire's new models the advantage of being based on something recently announced and proven to be generally faster than the GTX 680. In its press release, Sapphire also stated that the new Toxic and Vapor-X (Atomic) models will be announced "within the next few weeks."

We knew from way back in December 2011, that Sapphire is working on custom-design Radeon HD 7970 graphics card models with some crazy factory-overclocked speeds. The company today reiterated that it's working on some of those models, but that the SKU is changed from HD 7970 to HD 7970 GHz Edition. A little more than a name change is behind the announcement. We knew from way back in December 2011, that Sapphire is working on custom-design Radeon HD 7970 graphics card models with some crazy factory-overclocked speeds. The company today reiterated that it's working on some of those models, but that the SKU is changed from HD 7970 to HD 7970 GHz Edition. A little more than a name change is behind the announcement.

AMD Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition Review - Tahiti's Boost from Overclocking and Drivers Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/amd-radeon-hd-7970-ghz-editionreview--tahiti-s-boost-from-overclocking-and-drivers/16362.html June 22nd, 2012

Today's review will focus on how the official increased clock frequencies of the 7970 GHz edition aka Tahiti XT2 1050MHz on the core (13.5% increase from 925MHz) and 1500MHz on the memory (9% increase from 1375MHz), help peg back or increase the performance delta over Nvidia's GTX 680 Kepler. We run a plethora of benchmarks on the latest beta drivers (Catalyst 12.7 and 304.48) from both camps, sometimes with interesting results to report. Earlier today, AMD announced the Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition, a new SKU that is touted to be faster than NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680, enabling AMD to retake the single-GPU performance crown. We also learned that most of these HD 7970 GHz Edition cards will be sold by its various add-in board (AIB) partners. The biggest such AIB partner, Sapphire, soon followed up on AMD's announcement with one of its own, stating that the HD 7970 Toxic 6GB and Vapor-X (Atomic) series graphics card models it's working on, have been modified, and that they will carry the HD 7970 GHz Edition GPU.

Whats New?

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June 22nd, 2012

HD 7970 Tahiti XT 113-C3860100-100 Tahiti B0 CR XT C38601 GDDR5 3GB

Published by: VR-Zone

HD 7970 GHz Edition Tahiti TX2 113-C3862000-004

Tahiti B0 XT2 C38620 300MHz / 150MHz : 0.850V GDDR5 3GB 925MHz / 1.38GHz : 1.170V 300MHz / 150MHz : 0.950V 1.05GHz / 1.5GHz : 1.256V By now, you will all have read and experienced that the original HD 7970 had fantastic overclocking potential, with most cards able to scale to 1100MHz on the core without voltage increases. We note in the bios p-states dump that the peak core voltage during 3D loads have been raised to 1.256v from 1.17v, so how will this affect TDP and heat output? Well, AMD introduced a new power management technique with their new Catalyst 12.7 beta drivers...

which results in higher performance. As an end result, DTE is responsible for about 3-4% performance uplift vs the HD7970 GHz Edition with DTE disabled. The DTE mechanism itself is an iterative differential model which works in the following manner. Starting from a set of initial conditions, the DTE algorithm calculates dTemp_ti/dt based on the inferred power consumption over a previous timeslice (is a function of voltage, workload/capacitance, freq, temp, leakage, etc), and the thermal capacitance of the fansink (function of fansink and T_delta). Simply put, we estimate the heat into the chip and the heat out of the chip at any given moment. Based on this differential relation, it’s easy to work back from your initial conditions and estimate Temp_ti, which is the temperature at any timeslice. A lot of work goes into tuning the parameters around thermal capacitance and power flux, but in the end, you have an algorithmic way to always provide benefit over the previous worst-case assumption, but also to guarantee that it will be representative of the entire population of parts in the market. We could have easily done this through diode measurements, and used real temperature instead of digital temperature estimates‌. But that would not be deterministic. Our current method with DTE guarantees that two parts off the shelf will perform the same way, and we enable end users to take advantage of their extra OC headroom on their parts through tools like Overdrive. Spot the differences between the regular 7970 and 7970 GHz

...Unfortunately, our efforts to find out more from the horse mouth about the exact scenarios when and how the boost will kick in was met with silence. DTE works as a deterministic model of temperature in a worst case environment, as to give us a better estimate of how much current the ASIC is leaking at any point in time. As a first order approximation, ASIC power is roughly a function of: dynamic_power(voltage, frequency) + static_power(temperature, voltage, leakage). Traditional PowerTune implementations assume that the ASIC is running at a worst case junction temperature, and as such always overestimates the power contribution of leaked current. In reality, even at a worst case ambient temp (45C inlet to the fansink), the GPU will not be working at a worst case junction temperature. By using an estimation engine to better calculate the junction temp, we can reduce this overestimation in a deterministic manner, and hence allow the PowerTune architecture to deliver more of the budget towards dynamic power (i.e. frequency) 6

June 22nd, 2012

Published by: VR-Zone

Out of the three cards we've laid our hands on, the ASIC quality readings ranged from 59.8% to 61% - lower than the 70-80% that we've had on our bunch of other older 7970s. That said, we could run the new cards at 1.3V with MSI Afterburner without tripping the overvoltage protection and attained core frequencies of between 1260MHz and 1290MHz, slightly higher than the older cards. How much will the new cards cost? Starts from US$499. This places the 7970 GHz edition head on with the GTX 680's official MSRP.

AMD Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition Launched Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/amd-radeon-hd-7970-ghz-editionlaunched/16378.html June 22nd, 2012

AMD launched the Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition graphics card. In its crosshairs is NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680, and retaking the single-GPU performance crown. The new chip, apart from a fully-configured ASIC, features ≼1000 MHz GPU clock speed. AMD launched the Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition graphics card. In its crosshairs is NVIDIA GeForce GTX 680, and retaking the single-GPU performance crown. The new chip, apart from a fully-configured ASIC, features ≼1000 MHz GPU clock speed.

Nope, the old and "new" cards are completely identical hardware wise. We've confirmed this fact with AMD and several AIB partners. Whats allegedly different is the handpicked better ASICs that goes into the GHz edition cards. ASIC Quality and Overclocking

Unlike what previous reports from various sources in the media have been suggesting, the HD 7970 GHz Edition is not based on a new ASIC, or even a new revision of the existing "Tahiti" one. Instead, it is made from hand-picked (binned) high-performing Tahiti chips, from existing batches. It goes with the internal codename "Tahiti XT2." The chip attains high clock speeds and overclocking headroom purely out of tolerance to higher voltages, or higher quality (low leakage) silicons, which can attain higher clock speeds at typical voltages. Speaking of clock speeds, AMD implemented PowerTune with Boost, a technology that sounds similar to NVIDIA GPU Boost. AMD clocked the HD 7970 GHz Edition at 1000 MHz (core), with 1050 MHz (core Boost). The Boost frequency is active for most applications, although some apps with unreal 7

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loads (eg: Furmark) can send the frequency down to 1000 MHz. AMD's Boost technology uses a "predictive" algorithm that takes into account how an application behaves, and how it should tune clock speeds (between Boost, nominal, and throttle p-states), and how the GPU voltage should be adjusted on-the-fly to support the clock speeds. Stability and performance seem to be a greater priority than power draw.

Published by: VR-Zone June 22nd, 2012

Facebook has settled with a group of five users who sued over the use of their names, "likes", and images in Facebook's "Sponsored Story" advertising, which derives a user's friends' likes of advertiser pages to create an endorsed advertisement for that product. Facebook has settled a lawsuit regarding its “Sponsored Stories” ad feature, agreeing to allow users to have more control over the use of their personal information. The monetary value of the changes, according to an economist hired by the plaintiffs, is roughly $103 million, but Facebook will pay just over $20 million to settle the case, according to court documents filed on Wednesday.

The memory clock of the HD 7970 GHz Edition isn't left untouched, it is stepped up to 1500 MHz,. using the same Hynix-made GDDR5 chips that go into the GeForce GTX 600 series. Thanks to the 384-bit wide memory interface, the card ends up with a memory bandwidth of 288 GB/s. The rest of the component load-out is identical to that of the HD 7970. The 28 nm Tahiti silicon packs 2,048 Graphics CoreNext stream processors, which at the given clock speeds, breaches the 1 TFLOP/s double-precision floating-point performance mark. The chip is armed with 128 TMUs, and 32 ROPs. Like the HD 7970, the new HD 7970 GHz Edition draws power from a combination of 8-pin and 6-pin PCIe power connectors. AMD rates its peak power consumption at 250W, just 49W short of that of the GTX 690. Display outputs include dual-link DVI, HDMI, and a pair of miniDisplayPort connectors. The card can pair with any three more Tahiti-based ones, in CrossFire configuration (that includes HD 7970 (925 MHz), HD 7950, and even HD 7970 X2).

Sponsored Stories are advertisements that appear on a user’s page and generally consist of one of their friends’ names, profile picture, and a claim that the friend “likes” the advertiser. Five Facebook users filed a class-action lawsuit against the social networking giant, saying that it violates California law by publicizing other users’ “likes” without paying them or offering a way to opt out of the service. Potentially, had the class-action status of the lawsuit been granted, Facebook would have faced over 100 million potential plaintiffs. The settlement agreement, filed on Wednesday, requires that Facebook members will be able to control what content is available for use by the Sponsored Stories. Facebook agreed to keep these changes, among others, for a minimum of two years. The company has also agreed to pay $10 million to organizations dedicated to educating safe use of social networking; some groups set to receive money include the Electronic Frontier Foundation and Stanford Law School’s Center for Internet and Society. An additional $10 million will be paid by Facebook for the plaintiff attorney’s fees. This settlement has to be approved by U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh in San Jose, who will weigh up whether the terms adequately benefit the members of the class-action suit. Koh had said that the plaintiffs had shown that economic injury could result from Facebook’s use of their names, photographs, and likenesses. During the course of the lawsuit, Facebook’s founder and Chief Executive, Mark Zuckerberg, was quoted as saying that trusted referrals were the “Holy Grail” of advertising. In addition, the suit cited comments from Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg who said that the value of the Sponsored Story advertisements were at least two to three times the value of a standard ad without a friend’s endorsement.

AMD is pricing the Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition at US $499. It should be mostly sold as non-reference designs though its add-in board partners.

Facebook Settles in California Lawsuit Over Advertising

Microsoft Releases SmartGlass SDK Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/microsoft-releases-smartglasssdk/16375.html

Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/facebook-settles-in-californialawsuit-over-advertising/16377.html

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Microsoft has taken developers by surprise by releasing the SDK for its new SmartGlass technology less than two months after unveiling the technology at E3. The release of Microsoft’s new SmartGlass technology, which was a huge portion of their E3 presentation, may be closer than anyone thought. Microsoft has just released the software development kit, or SDK, giving developers the tools they need in order to integrate the technology into their apps and games. The SmartGlass technology allows developers to create interconnected experiences between the Xbox 360 and various Windows 8 devices. Some examples given in the E3 presentation involved a show being watched displayed on a tablet, or control of various aspects of a game from a phone. More information on Microsoft’s E3 presentation can be found here. Developers interested in trying out the technology can download the SDK from here. Included in the kit are the Xbox SmartGlass Studio, which allows developers to build SmartGlass actions, a JavaScript library containing device APIs that will provide a consistent user experience across the various platforms, and sample code to show developers some possibilities of the new technology. Most of the promise of SmartGlass will depend on developers integrating the technology into their games and applications, and the possibilities extend far beyond simply pushing video to your TV from your phone. Imagine drawing a new play in a football game designed to take advantage of a particular defensive formation directly on your tablet, or using your phone as a racing wheel. These and many more possibilities will see the light of day only if SmartGlass capabilities are built into the games, and Microsoft has started the ball rolling in a big way with the release of the SDK. Watch this space for news on SmartGlass as developers have a chance to create new, innovative uses for the technology.

Apple Increasing Presence in Chinese Market?

Published by: VR-Zone

“key feature” of the device. In checks with various suppliers, Shaw Wu of Sterne Agee has heard that support for the network will be implemented in the next generation of the device. This would make sense, as China Mobile is the largest cellular company in the world, with more than 650 million subscribers to their cellular service. While trials for 4G networks are underway, widespread adoption in the Chinese market is likely to be a couple of years away still. So, a strong 3G support is critical to a good showing should Apple release its iPhone on China Mobile. Further indications that Apple is looking to strengthen its presence in the Chinese market include an enhanced support for Chinese languages in iOS 6. These enhancements include easier character input and support for Siri to understand spoken Mandarin and Cantonese. Shaw Wu also believes that the next generation of iPhone will include a new form factor, a larger screen, and 4G LTE capabilities. While there have been no official announcements from Apple concerning these changes, various sources have speculated about an increased screen size in the next iPhone. Wu, in a letter to investors on Thursday, said he believes that the next generation iPhone won’t be released until October, placing it a full year after the launch of the iPhone 4S.

Sharkoon Intros Skiller Gaming Keyboard Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/sharkoon-intros-skiller-gamingkeyboard/16372.html June 22nd, 2012

German PC peripherals designer Sharkoon rolled out the Skiller gaming keyboard. Its unique selling points include high key-rollover, and the ability to store up to 10 macro profiles locally. Sharkoon also has a big surprise in store for you, its price. German PC peripherals designer Sharkoon rolled out the Skiller gaming keyboard. Its unique selling points include high key-rollover, and the ability to store up to 10 macro profiles locally. Sharkoon also has a big surprise in store, with its price.

Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/apple-increasing-presence-inchinese-market-/16374.html June 22nd, 2012

Apple may be preparing to increase its market share in China by including support for China Mobile's 3G network in their next generation of the popular iPhone. Apple may be preparing for its next generation of iPhones to be truly global devices with indications that support for China Mobile’s TD-SCDMA 3G cellular network will be a

Pictured above, the Skiller is touted by Sharkoon to be every bit gaming-grade. Apart from its 107-key QWERTY layout, the Skiller provides no less than 20 macro keys, which double up as Windows 7-compatible quick-access keys, to perform most common tasks. The included software allows 9

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you to create up to 10 macro profiles, and store them locally on the keyboard. The 20 macro/quick-access keys are split into three sub-levels (the left, right, and top sets of macro keys make up for them). Macro profiles can be switched onthe-fly for each individual sub-level.

Published by: VR-Zone

upcoming I/O event will shed some light onto Jelly Bean and its progress.

Microsoft issues takedown notice for leaked Xbox 720 document Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/microsoft-issues-takedown-noticefor-leaked-xbox-720-document/16370.html June 22nd, 2012

The WASD keys are interchangeable with haptic ones, which help easy access with first and third-person action games. A feature that cements the Skiller's classification as a gaming keyboard is its 18 key-rollover (registers up to 18 simultaneous key presses). Measuring 485 x 212 x 25 mm, the Sharkoon Skiller weighs about 603 g. It uses a commonmembrane switch design. Its USB cable is sleeved in nylon, and is 150 cm long. Lastly, the surprising price we talked about a little earlier: 14.99 Euros (SG $24).

Buy the first Android Jelly Bean smartphone Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/buy-the-first-android-jelly-beansmartphone/16371.html June 22nd, 2012

Microsoft has demanded that the leaked Xbox 720 roadmap document be removed from a number of media websites, all but confirming the legitimacy of the leaked details. Microsoft has demanded that the leaked Xbox 720 roadmap document be removed from a number of media websites, all but confirming the legitimacy of the leaked details. Czech website Ihned.cz received a takedown notice from Alan Radford, Internet Investigator for Microsoft, claiming that it was “offering unlicensed copies of … copyrighted works published by Microsoft,” citing the “IEB Roadmap” as the crux of the complaint. The document was leaked on Scribd, but it has since been removed at the request of law firm Covington & Burling LLP, which lists Microsoft as a client.

Android Jelly Bean may come sooner than expected, and where else can you stumble upon the news beside the Google Play Galaxy Nexus checkout page?

Some of the features detailed in the 56-page leak include a faster processor, Kinect glasses, and cross-platform support with multiple devices. Android Jelly Bean may come sooner than expected, and where else can you stumble upon the news beside the Google Galaxy Nexus checkout page?

Unwittingly, of course, Microsoft has verified that the contents of the document are authentic, as it would not bring in the legal hounds for pure speculation.

Google recently launched their campaign to sell the Galaxy Nexus, and now it may be the first device to come with Android 4.1 Jell… Okay, it’s a little cut off, but what else can the rest of “Jell...” be? In any case, the Google Galaxy Nexus will have an update to Android 4.1, be it “Jell” or Jelly Bean. Hopefully the 10

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Huawei to launch Windows Phone 8 smartphones Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/huawei-to-launch-windowsphone-8-smartphones/16369.html June 22nd, 2012

Huawei is to launch smartphones and tablet computers powered by Microsoft's upcoming Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8 operating systems, providing further competition in an already packed market. Huawei is to launch smartphones and tablet computeres powered by Microsoft's upcoming Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8 operating systems, providing further competition in an already packed market. The Chinese firm, which is the sixth largest mobile phone maker in the world, revealed that it had selected Windows Phone 8 for its handsets and is considering using it for tablets as well. Reuters reports that the operating system in question is Windows 8, not Windows Phone 8, which was unveiled at the Windows Phone Summit yesterday. However, the shared Windows core means that Huawei may be looking at Windows Phone 8 for smartphones and Windows 8 for tablets.

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marketing officer of its device division, Shao Yang, saying that the company is currently lacking the ability to “get close to people and understand people.”

Lenovo to develop a product similar to the Asus Taichi Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/lenovo-to-develop-a-productsimilar-to-the-asus-taichi/16368.html June 22nd, 2012

Asus showed off its Taichi, a dual screen notebook, at Computex 2012, and Lenovo was reportedly also planning to develop a similar type of notebook. Asus showed off its Taichi, a dual screen notebook, at Computex 2012, and Lenovo was reportedly to also planning to develop a similar type of notebook. There are no words as to how Lenovo plans to compete with Asus or entice consumers, and analysts remain skeptical that dual screen notebooks will become mainstream products. The increase in production cost is a big factor in how consumers are drawn toward a product. A touch panel will increase the cost by $80-100, and consumers generally only accept a $30 increase for added touch capability. “…since adding a touchscreen panel to a notebook will increase costs by US$80-100, while the upstream supply chain's investigations show that consumers can only accept a cost increase of US$30 for the addition of touchscreen capabilities, the gap of US$50-70 plus the increased costs from extra casing components may significantly challenge consumer acceptance of Windows 8-based products,” a source told digitimes.com The Asus Taichi is a full on notebook, but not quite tablet, and not quite a dual display (a person can't view both displays at the same time) PC. So what is it? Would consumers prefer a notebook that has two monitors built in that they can view at the same time? We'll see how Lenovo goes about developing their Taichi-killer.

Microsoft listed Huawei as one of the initial supporters of Windows Phone 8, with the others being Nokia, Samsung and HTC, all of which previously supported the Windows Phone 7 platform. It is not clear how many Windows Phone 8 devices Huawei has planned, but one of them will be in its Ascend range and will launch in the US, Europe and China by the end of this year. The company also plans to ship up to 60 million smartphones this year, three times more than last year, showing that it has tremendous growth opportunity.

South Korea forces Blizzard to refund Diablo III players Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/south-korea-forces-blizzard-torefund-diablo-iii-players/16367.html June 22nd, 2012

South Korean regulators have forced Blizzard to offer full refunds for Diablo III over the extensive issues with the game that resulted in gamers not being able to play.

Huawei is also hoping to increase brand awareness with a $200 million investment in advertising, with the chief 11

June 22nd, 2012

Published by: VR-Zone

South Korean regulators have forced Blizzard to offer full refunds for Diablo III over the extensive issues with the game that resulted in gamers not being able to play. The Fair Trade Commission in South Korea launched an investigation of Blizzard after it initially refused to refund players affected by its server problems. This goes against Korean consumer protection laws, which require refunds when a problem arises that is not caused by the consumer. With two-thirds of the game's Asian traffic coming from the country, it's no wonder why there were server problems, and it's no surprise that Blizzard did not want to lose so many customers. The company has since added more servers to address the downtime and it is now willing to give players their money back.

Apple gives employees additional discounts on Macs and iPads Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/apple-gives-employees-additionaldiscounts-on-macs-and-ipads/16366.html June 22nd, 2012

Apple employees can now purchase Mac and iPad with a 25% discount on top of their current 25% employee discount. There is a catch, however. Only those with characters below level 40, two-thirds of the way through the 60-level content, can avail of the refund. There is also a very tight window of opportunity for refunds, from 25 June to 3 July. Blizzard is introducing a refund program going forward which will allow any player with characters below level 20 to get their money back within 14 days of purchase, which should keep the consumer watchdog happy without losing too many players. Blizzard is also offering Diablo III users a 30 day free trial of Star Craft II: Wings of Liberty, but that is more marketing than compensation.

Apple employees can now purchase Macs and iPads with a 25% discount on top of their current 25% employee discount. Tim Cook promised a new Mac and iPad discount in January for employees, and he kept his promise. Excluding Mac minis and MacBooks with Retina, employees are able to purchase Macs at up to $500 discounts, and iPads at up to $250 discounts. However, employees must meet several requirements to take advantage of the discounts. An employee has to be with the company for at least three months, and the discount can only be taken advantage of every three years. 12

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More good news for Apple employees as they many have or will get a pay raise. The average reported raises are between $2 and $4. This may make us wonder if Foxconn’s employees will reap any benefits from Apple’s goodwill.

NVIDIA Slips out PCIe Gen 3.0 Patch for GeForce Kepler on X79 Systems Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/nvidia-slips-out-pcie-gen-3.0-patchfor-geforce-kepler-on-x79-systems/16364.html June 22nd, 2012

NVIDIA released a patch that enables PCI-Express Gen 3.0 interface mode for GeForce Kepler-based graphics cards, such as the GeForce GTX 680 and GeForce GTX 670, on Intel's Sandy Bridge-E HEDT (X79) platform. The patch is released on a use-at-your-own-risk basis, with adequate cautions and disclaimers to end users. Back in March, NVIDIA's GeForce GTX 680, which was touted to be the company's first PCI-Express Gen 3.0 GPU, disappointed some, when it didn't work in Gen 3.0 mode on Intel Sandy Bridge-E (X79) systems (the only Gen 3.0capable systems at the time). On what is currently Intel's most premium client computing platform, GPUs built on NVIDIA's Kepler architecture work only in PCI-Express Gen 2.0 mode.

Published by: VR-Zone

can be undone by simply running the same executable with "-revert" command-line argument. NVIDIA does not vouch for the reliability of the patch, and cautioned people against using it, if reliability is paramount. Its use comes with no warranties. You use it entirely at your own risk. Enthusiasts willing to take the risk, and seeking to get what they paid for, can find the patch in the link below.

Oracle's Larry Ellison buys Hawaiian island of Lanai Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/oracle-s-larry-ellison-buys-hawaiianisland-of-lanai/16365.html June 22nd, 2012

Oracle’s chief, Larry Ellison, is reported to have successfully won a bid to buy 98% of the Hawaiian island of Lanai. It is unknown how much Ellison actually paid for the island, but the asking price was $500-600 million.

NVIDIA removed support for PCI-Express Gen 3.0 on Sandy Bridge-E, post launch of the GTX 680, arguing that the platform while supporting PCI-Express 8 GT/s mode, isn't PCI-Express Gen 3.0 "certified," and hence to ensure the highest levels of reliability, support for Gen 3.0 mode was pulled. NVIDIA also assured at the time, that a patch would be released at a later date, which would re-enable Gen 3.0 on the platform. A little earlier this week, NVIDIA made good on its assurance, but with a few riders.

Oracle’s chief, Larry Ellison, is reported to have successfully won a bid to buy 98% of the Hawaiian island of Lanai. It is unknown how much Ellison actually paid for the island, but the asking price was $500-600 million. Ellison is estimated to be worth $36 billion, and what else can he possibly do with all that money besides buy a lot of property?

NVIDIA released a patch which has to be used along with the latest stable GeForce drivers, that forces PCI-Express Gen 3.0 bus interface mode for GeForce GTX 680, GTX 670, and other Kepler family GPUs, on Intel Sandy Bridge-E HEDT (X79) platforms. The patch would enable the GPU to take advantage of 8 GT/s per lane interface bandwidth, which could come handy, if the card is running on a PCI-Express x8 (electrical) slot, in certain multi-GPU configurations. The patch is a roughly 400 KB executable, which takes effect simply by executing it, and rebooting the system. The patch

However, Ellision’s purchase of Hawaiian land may not be just for personal leisure. Lanai, nicknamed “Pineapple Island,” is home to 3,200 residents, and several luxury resorts. The 365 square kilometer island was a Pineapple plantation in the past, but for the past several decades it has been a bustling tourist attraction.

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David Murdock is the previous owner of Lanai, and Castle and Cooke is the current owner of the majority of hotels, golf courses, water utilities, and other business. However, Castle and Cooke is reported to be losing as much as $40 million a year on Lanai. One of Silicon Valley’s wealthiest men is stepping in and expanding his business practice beyond technology and into real estate.

Carmack says PS4 and 720 won't live up to the hype Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/carmack-says-ps4-and-720-won-tlive-up-to-the-hype/16363.html June 22nd, 2012

Don’t expect leaps and bounds when it comes to the next gen tech of the Xbox 720 and Sony PS4, well, at least according to John Carmack.

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Carmack also points to the VR headset that he’s working on as an example of the next gen gaming experience. However, Carmack does not deny the fact that Sony, along with other console giants, may look into VR as something they can work upon to deliver more than just life-like renderings on the screen. “As a fully consumer thing, it is hard to imagine [the VR headset] happening in less than a year. Sony is already interested in this thing, and they are interested in seeing how they want to follow this up. I can easily imagine something like that. Sony conceivably could have a product out in the next year. I have no inkling on internal plans, but as a company I think they can do it.” Furthermore, consumers of Xbox 360 expect that the 720 will deliver even more robust gaming experience from Kinect and other augmented reality devices. There’s no doubt that every major gaming console makers are working on some sort of “next gen” gaming experience. But who would have thought that the Nintendo Wii would have made such a big splash with its low end hardware at launch?

Intel Xeon family finally accepts the Larrabee in: Xeon Phi and its futures Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/intel-xeon-family-finally-acceptsthe-larrabee-in-xeon-phi-and-its-futures/16361.html June 22nd, 2012

Don’t expect leaps and bounds when it comes to the next gen tech of the Xbox 720 and Sony PS4, well, at least according to John Carmack. Many current PS3 and 720 titles are not rendered in full HD (1080P) at 60 FPS--most titles currently renders in 720P at 30 FPS. However, Carmack expects that the future consoles can render most, if not all, games in 1080P at 60 FPS. Aside from increased rendering and FPS power, Carmack doesn’t see anything else revolutionary about Sony’s or Microsoft’s next console. “Any creative vision that a designer could come up with, we can do a pretty good job representing on current generation and certainly on PC. In many ways I am not all that excited about the next generation. It will let us do everything we want to do now, with the knobs turned up. If you take a current game like Halo which is a 30 hertz game at 720p; if you run that at 1080p, 60 frames with high dynamic frame buffers, all of a sudden you've sucked up all the power you have in the next-generation. It will be what we already have, but a lot better.” Carmack emphasizes that virtual reality (VR) should be the next step in next generation gaming. Not surprisingly,

At the ISC supercomputing conference in Germany, Intel finally gave the name to its MIC accelerator - the Xeon Phi. How does it stand against the competition, both the outside GPUs and its own Xeon brethren? Intel's Many Integrated Core accelerator chip, or MIC, or Knights Corner - depends what name you refer to - is the compute offspring of the shelved Intel Larrabee high end GPU effort. The 50+ simple two-way in-order Pentium (yes, 1995 Pentium!) like cores feed the same number of 512-bit wide SIMD FP units, with the ability to deliver around 1 TFLOPs peak in double precision at around 1 GHz. That is, as long as you work out of on board 8 GB RAM that the initial pre production cards in the first deployments have. Once you cross to the PCIe connection to the mainboard, the data transfer latency bogs that down - but then, all GPUs suffer from the same ailment anyway. Intel has now officially christened the new kid on the block as Xeon Phi - phi, or golden ratio, being the famous 1.61... math constant that, together with the more famous Pi, defines our body proportions and the overall order of nature, as the pyramid builders and Leonardo Da Vinci would have it, among others. Yes, Phi is roughly the screen proportion of 16:10 monitors too, making them far more aesthetically pleasing to look at than the somewhat disturbing 16:9 ones.

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Xeon Phi has one huge advantage over the OpenCL or CUDA-bound GPU compute solutions. It's an X86 chip. So, ultimately, you can program it in line like an X86 co processor together with your ordinary Xeon chippery, without having to resort to fancy programming interfaces and such. It helps cut the learning curve manifold, according to the users and vendor alike. The ready pool of supported apps will be impressive at the official launch later this year. That being said, Xeon Phi also has one huge dis-advantage over the OpenCL or CUDA-bound GPU compute solutions. It's an X86 chip. This means outdated, ISA baggage-loaded, less transistor-efficient and harder to scale core than the custom tailored more modern GPU architectures like AMD GCN or Nvidia Kepler. And, at least behind the closed doors, both AMD and Nvidia GPUs have been shown booting Linux on their own, without requiring a CPU. So, how does it stand performance wise? Its double precision FP throughput is the same as the typical AMD Radeon HD7970 card which costs one quarter of the amount but with much smaller memory, 3 GB, and no ECC. The FirePro W9000 'proper' workstation version with ECC memory and such will likely be much closer in price. Both AMD offerings reach 4 TFLOPs in single precision peak FP, twice that of the initial Xeon Phi. The current Nvidia offerings based on Kepler GK104 are far behind in both SP and especially DP FP. Only the yearend GK110, with its 3 TFLOP SP and 1.5 TFLOP DP expected performance, will equalise the performance. But, by that time, AMD will have Sea Islands GPUs, and Xeon Phi might end up faster than it is now. Phi should get that speed up sooner rather than later, as Intel's own Xeon high end CPUs will be faster in FP. The 3.3 GHz 10 core Xeon E5-2600 V2 Ivy Bridge EP will give you over 270 DP GFLOPS peak per socket around yearend, while, a year later, Xeon E5 V3 Haswell EP should bring that up to beyond 600 DP GFLOPs for a 12 core version when using the FMA optimisations. To keep themselves attractive, the Phi's should be at least 3x as fast per socket as the general purpose CPUs they augment - meaning 2 TFLOPs DP at least by 2014. And yes, as it's an X86 after all, Phi could boot Linux on its own, Phi-only clusters becoming a possibility someday. Either way, you'll see Xeon Phi in quite a few upcoming supercomputers, including some No.1 world leader candidates this year and next. And yes, being in a typical GPU card format, it can fit in your standard high end desktop or workstation PC too.

GDDR6 Memory Coming in 2014

Published by: VR-Zone June 22nd, 2012

Without any doubt, GDDR5 memory is prevalent high-speed memory of today. The standard attracted a lot of companies and powers systems from graphics cards to networking switches, from cars to rockets and even lunar landers. Thus, the big question remains, when the successor is going to arrive? You might not know this, but AMD i.e. Advanced Micro Devices is actually the company behind the creation of GDDR memory standard. The company did a lot of great work with GDDR3 and now with GDDR5, while GDDR4 was simply too short on the market to drive the demand for the solution. In the words of our sources, "GDDR3 was too good for GDDR4 to compete with, while everyone knew what was coming with GDDR5." GDDR5 as a memory standard was designed as Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. The Single-Ended GDDR5 i.e. Dr. Jekyll was created to power the contemporary processors, while the Differential GDDR5 i.e. Mr. Hyde was designed to "murder Rambus and XDR". Ultimately, the conventional S.E. GDDR5 took off better than expected and clocked higher than anyone hoped for. While the estimates for the top standard were set at 1.5GHz QDR, i.e. 6 "effective GHz" with overclocking, we got both AMD and NVIDIA actually shipping retail parts at 1.5GHz, with overclocks as high as 1.85GHz (7.4 "GHz"). This brought us to more than 250GB/s achiveable bandwidth, meaning that the purpose of Differential GDDR5 was lost. Enter GDDR6. This is the memory standard that will take us to the 2020 and beyond, i.e. third decade of the 21st century. GDDR6 is being built with a lot of changes and accent on the driving silicon, that we expect this part to last, if not outlast the GDDR3 memory, which launched in 2004 and still makes for vast majority of GDDR memory shipments. The hard work at AMD is still going strong, with the effort now is starting to be on certifying the standard through AMD-chaired organizations at JEDEC. There is a big number of interested parties, such as NVIDIA, Intel, Qualcomm, Texas Instruments, CISCO and others. However, this is the field where AMD is the company in charge, and regardless for whom are you rooting for, without AMD's memory team - our present (and the future) would look significantly different.

The Internet Protocol: Past, Present, and Future - Part 1 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/the-internet-protocol-past-presentand-future--part-1/16355.html June 22nd, 2012

Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/gddr6-memory-comingin-2014/16359.html

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June 22nd, 2012

We're starting a three-part series on the Internet Protocol this week, in honor of the successful launch and growing adoption of IPv6. In today's part, we discuss the history of the internet, the need for a standardized communication protocol and the creation of IPv4. How many IP addresses are left? This may seem like a silly question, and it’s something that most internet users don’t think about, but this is a question that could decide the future of the Internet. Over the next few days, in recognition of the activation of a solution to the biggest problem facing the Internet, I will be writing a guide to the Internet Protocol-- better known as IP, the backbone of all communication across the internet. This guide will give an overview of the history of the protocol, how it functions, an overview of IPv4, and an overview of the new IPv6, which went live on June 6th. First, we’ll touch on the history and inner workings of the Internet Protocol. What is it? Why was it created? And how does it work? History of the Internet Protocol To understand the origins of the Internet Protocol, we first need a quick refresher course on the history of the internet as a whole. What we know today as the Internet was originally called the ARPANET. Run by various universities and the US military, its purpose was to relay data between various computer centers across the country. Established in 1969, ARPANET grew over the years because of the falling costs of computers in both money and space, allowing more universities and organizations to house their own computers. ARPANET eventually grew to the point where other networks, like the UK’s Mark I, began to be connected to the growing network of networked computers, leading to what we know of today as the Internet, short for “internetwork.” In order for communications to be passed along the network, however, an addressing system was needed. Otherwise, a signal being sent to UCLA might be mistakenly sent to Los Alamos or MIT, leading to confusion and an inability to use the network for anything. Various methods were proposed, but the method which eventually became the standard was a suite of protocols known as the Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol Model, Internet Protocol Suite, or TCP/IP. The Transmission Control Protocol offers an intermediary between applications looking to send data over the Internet and the IP packets; rather than an application having to break its data into packets with proper formatting and collision/signal loss detection, TCP handles all of that, allowing applications to simply send and receive data. The Internet Protocol is the meat of modern networked communications. IP works by creating a packet of information containing a header and the data being sent. The header includes information such as the destination and, optionally, what servers to route through on the way to the destination. It also includes the source address for the message and any other information required, such as “TTL,” or Time To Live, a timer that tells a server when it can ignore a packet coming in as having taken too long to reach its destination. The beauty of the IP’s design is its assumptions about reliability. The IP specifications assume at all times that

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any given network is unstable, and that any signal may be lost at any time. This means that IP is a connectionless architecture, as opposed to a connection-oriented architecture. While this does provide some challenges, such as packets arriving out of order, data corruption not being checked, and packet duplication, it also allows for some amazing technical features, such as the nearindestructibility of the internet as a whole. As a side note, this has led to a recurring urban myth that the Internet was designed to withstand a nuclear war, which is completely false; the fact that the Internet would most likely survive a nuclear war (at least as far as the infrastructure is concerned) is a happy coincidence of its natural expansion and redundancies. Another factor is the automatic, dynamic routing of traffic over the internet through the use of the Internet Protocol Suite, making it nearly impossible to cut off one area of the internet from another. For more information on the durability of the Internet, feel free to read my previous article about it here. In 1974, the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE) published a paper by Vint Cerf and Bob Kahn entitled “A Protocol for Packet Network Intercommunication,” which laid the groundwork for the TCP/IP model. IPv0 through IPv3 were developmental versions used between 1977 and 1979. The most widely-used version of the protocol, known as IPv4, was officially standardized with the release of RFC 791, in 1981. Next time, we will discuss the specifications for IPv4, how it routes traffic to various servers around the globe, and the problem that its creators never saw coming.

Researchers Create Gigapixel Camera Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/researchers-create-gigapixelcamera/16358.html June 22nd, 2012

Researchers working for DARPA have announced the creation of a portable gigapixel camera, with technology that should allow for 50-gigapixel cameras. Get out your checkbooks, ladies and gentlemen; the future of camera technology is here. Okay, so maybe it’s a little premature to be talking about purchasing this latest advancement. After all, it’s still in the developmental stage. However, we’ve just been given a glimpse into the future of camera technology, and the future is insanely detailed. Researchers working for the US Department of Defense’s DARPA agency have developed a camera that is technically capable of taking a 50,000 megapixel image. Now, DARPA has been responsible for many advancements through the years, including the internet and self-driving cars (which are not too far away from a consumer reality). And images taken by their new camera are reportedly a thousand times more detailed than current top-of-the-line digital SLR cameras, which tend to be in the 40-50 megapixel range. Currently, 16

June 22nd, 2012

the team has only built a 1,000 megapixel camera, but they are working on a 10,000 megapixel version with plans to continue pushing the capabilities as far as they can. While gigapixel images have been taken in the past, they have usually been composites captured by multiple lowerresolution cameras, or arrays with massive computational, spacial, and monetary requirements; they also suffer from various geometric aberrations. The new camera is much smaller, and uses roughly 100 microcameras to create perfect images with much smaller individual processing requirements, before combining them all into a single image. Their camera is powerful enough to read a postage stamp at roughly a kilometer away. Sitting at roughly 2.5 square feet, the aperture of the camera is only a half-inch wide; the rest of the camera contains the microprocessors needed to process the information and combine it into a single, coherent image. Yet the researchers are confident that with advances in microprocessor technology the size could be shrunk to the point that it could be incorporated into a hand-held device; the researchers are quick to point out that their camera already uses sensors very similar to those in the most recent iPhone. The most likely near-term use for the technology is in security, with a single camera able to be placed in an area and monitor thousands of people with incredibly high-definition imaging. If the UK’s CCTV program has taught us anything, it’s that governments will gladly snatch this technology up in the name of security. The highly paranoid among you may now don your tinfoil hats.

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users to circumvent the block. However, a representative of the UK Pirate Party, a political group based on the Swedish political party of the same name and which opposes the blocks, told reporters at the BBC that more proxies had been made available, “within minutes” of the previous ones being blocked. The representative claimed that roughly 10% of their traffic on the proxy servers seemed to come from BT customers, 30% from VirginMedia, 15% from Sky, 6% from TalkTalk and 3% from O2. The representative contiued, saying that public interest had driven traffic to the Pirate Party’s website after the ban took effect. The increased traffic didn’t seem to be coming just for information on The Pirate Bay, either. He claimed that the party itself had seen an increased interest after listing information on the proxies, with a “significant uptick” in new membership and navigation of their site, with emails and phone calls also markedly increasing. He added that “[b]locks on Pirate Bay have effectively short-circuited the democratic process. Our internet policy is not being run by our elected representatives; it is being dictated by the music industry.” BT declined to comment for this article.

Yahoo and Facebook Granted Time To Discuss Settlement Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/yahoo-and-facebook-granted-timeto-discuss-settlement/16356.html June 22nd, 2012

Look forward to massive increases in camera capabilities in the near future as this technology becomes more readily available.

The Pirate Bay Circumvents British ISP Block Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/the-pirate-bay-circumvents-britishisp-block/16357.html June 22nd, 2012

Following BT's announcement of their block on The Pirate Bay, the site has announced they have circumvented the block placed on them by British ISPs, after a High Court ruling. The ongoing battle between The Pirate Bay and UK ISPs has been shining a light on issues including internet censorship, special interest group control over representative governments, and net neutrality. Recently, more ISPs have announced a block of The Pirate Bay servers, which the file-sharing site claims has already been bypassed. In April, the High Court ruled that ISPs were to prevent their users from accessing the site. TalkTalk, Sky, Virgin, O2 and Everything Everywhere have already announced their compliance with the order, with BT just recently joining them. When trying to access the site, BT customers receive the message “Error – site blocked.” BT also blocked access to proxy servers made available by The Pirate Bay to allow

Yahoo and Facebook, locked into a patent lawsuit with each other, have been granted a two-week extension by a federal judge in order to discuss settlement possibilities. Yahoo and Facebook are seeking an extension from the courts in order to continue working on a settlement. They believe the settlement talks in their high-profile patent lawsuit would be helped if the judge would delay certain deadlines, according to a filing on Tuesday. Earlier in the year, Yahoo sued Facebook over 10 of its patents, claiming that the social networking giant was guilty of infringement. Specifically, Yahoo is most concerned with a patent that covers specific online advertising technology, calling Facebook, “one of the worst performing sites for advertising” prior to their adaptation of Yahoo’s ideas. This was quickly followed by a countersuit from Facebook, in which they criticized Yahoo for being short-sighted in their prioritization of “litigation over innovation.” Yahoo began the lawsuit while Scott Thompson was the CEO of the company, but shortly after starting the case Thompson was ousted from the company over concerns about his resume. On Tuesday, Yahoo’s attorney Kevin Smith asked a federal judge in San Francisco to push back various deadlines for two weeks, without objection or opposition from Facebook. He wrote that the extension would “facilitate settlement.” Representatives from the two companies have declined to comment.

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June 26th, 2012

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VR-Zone.com | Tech News for the Geeks! VR-Zone | Stuff for the Geeks is a bi-weekly publication covering the latest gadgets and stuff for the geeks.

Intel Haswell-EP Platform Detailed Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/intel-haswell-ep-platformdetailed/16419.html June 26th, 2012

A certain DRAM major's frantic lobbying for the arrival of DDR4 seems to be paying off, as we're seeing some of the first leaks of information related to Intel's next-generation enterprise platform, Haswell-EP, slated for 2013-2014. Three crucial slides related to the platform component arrangement, the innards of the processor and core-logic themselves, were leaked. Haswell-EP will be built on the 22 nm silicon fabrication process, and will be perhaps the first platform to use DDR4 memory. A certain DRAM major's frantic lobbying for the arrival of DDR4 seems to be paying off, as we're seeing some of the first leaks of information related to Intel's next-generation enterprise platform, Haswell-EP, slated for 2013-2014. Three crucial slides related to the platform component arrangement, the innards of the processor and core-logic themselves, were leaked. The first and most important portion of a leaked slide reveals the arrangement of the various key components in the platform. It reveals an arrangement that is not much different from today's Sandy Bridge-EP platforms, in which n-number of CPU sockets are wired to each other using fast QuickPath Interconnect (QPI). Intel will use dual-channel QPI, which doubles bandwidth over what is available with today's enterprise platforms. Assuming each channel is clocked at 6.4 GT/s, the cumulative bandwidth would amount to 51.2 GB/s.

Each socket will have four DDR4 DRAM channels. The DDR4 DRAM specification will introduce a fundamental change in the topology of DRAM components, which will be arranged "point-to-point". Each DRAM "channel" from the memory controller will support just one DRAM module, but there will be greater scope for DRAM makers to scale up densities of the modules with advancements in technology and silicon fabrication process. Much like Sandy Bridge-EP, Haswell-EP will see a bulk of the platform's PCI-Express lane budget being care of the processors' system agents; and will require external chipset for peripheral connectivity. One significant and much-required change here is that the chipset will not hold the GbE interfaces for the platform. It is estimated that 1 GbE would reach obsoletion, at least in the enterprise space, in which faster interfaces such as 10 GbE, or even InfiniBand would have become "common". Since these are extremely bandwidth-hungry interfaces, Intel restructured the platform in a way that "common" onboard network interface controllers will be wired to the PCI-Express root complexes of the processors, rather than the chipset. (this article is spread across three pages)

Orbitz showing higher prices for Apple Mac users Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/orbitz-showing-higher-prices-forapple-mac-users/16418.html June 26th, 2012

Apple users may be getting ripped off even more than just the cost of their Mac computers and other Apple devices, with online travel agency Orbitz revealing that it shows Apple customers more expensive options than those using Windows. Apple users may be getting ripped off even more than just the cost of their Mac computers and other Apple devices, with online travel agency Orbitz revealing that it shows Apple customers more expensive options than those using Windows. Research conducted by Orbitz revealed that Mac users tend to spend an average of $20 to $30 more per night on hotels than those using Windows, which is up to 30 percent of the average cost of a nightly hotel stay on the website. It was also revealed that Mac users are 40 percent more likely to book four-star or five-star hotels compared to PC users.

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The findings are not necessarily a surprise, as Apple products have such a high price tag that many of its customers tend to be more affluent than supporters of Windows and Android. These are generalisations, of course, as there are many rich users of Microsoft products and many people with an iPhone on the lower end of the payscale, but part of the widespread success of rival products to Apple is their affordability.

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Amazon's German website has lowered its price for the nextgeneration Wii U console, while Nintendo has promised that the cost for the game system will be “reasonable.” Amazon's German website has lowered its price for the nextgeneration Wii U console, while Nintendo has promised that the cost for the game system will be “reasonable.” Amazon.de previously listed the Wii U for €399.99, but it has since lowered it to €349, which works out at $435 or £279, still somewhat pricier than expected. The listed price is believed to be an estimate, but it is unusual for the online store to alter it so quickly. The UK version of the website set the price at a more modest £199, but has since removed it.

What users tend to do is one thing, but Orbitz is seeking to capitalise on these spending habits by discriminating between Mac and Windows users, showing more expensive options for the former. When Orbitz detects that a user is making a search from a Mac computer it displays results that are, on average, 11 to 13 percent more expensive than the Windows counterpart, with some of the costlier options listed higher in searches for Mac users. Of course, Orbitz is not charging users more for the same deals. It is simply highlighting the more expensive options for Mac users. It also said that users can rank results by price to find cheaper options if they so choose. Orbitz might be arguing that Apple users want more luxurious hotels, but clearly the real crux of the matter is that Orbitz wants what it believes are its wealthier customers to part with more cash, even when someone using a different operating system might be getting a better deal.

Amazon lowers Wii U price, Nintendo promises "reasonable" cost Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/amazon-lowers-wii-u-pricenintendo-promises-reasonable-cost/16417.html June 26th, 2012

Meanwhile, Nintendo's president, Satoru Iwata, has refused to give a price, but promises that it will be “reasonable,” adding that the company won't make the same mistake it did with the 3DS, which failed to take off initially due to its high price, forcing the company to make a substantial price cut only months after launch. The company's American president, Reggie Fils-Aime, stated at E3 that gamers will be “pleasantly surprised” by the price, suggesting Nintendo already has a final price tag in mind. It is widely expected that the actual cost will be closer to $250, the original price for the Wii, which was one of the attractive qualities of the console that helped it expand beyond the core gamer base. Iwata also pledged that Nintendo will regain its profitability by the end of this fiscal year, after posting its first loss this year.

Akitio Combines USB 3.0 with FireWire 800 in Latest HDD Enclosure Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/akitio-combines-usb-3.0-withfirewire-800-in-latest-hdd-enclosure/16415.html

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June 26th, 2012

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June 26th, 2012

Akitio announced its newest enclosure for 2.5-inch SATA hard drives and solid state drives, the Neutrino U3+. The enclosure features an all-aluminum body that doubles up as a heatsink, and a combination of USB 3.0 and FireWire 800 interfaces. Akitio announced its newest enclosure for 2.5-inch SATA hard drives and solid state drives, the Neutrino U3+. The enclosure features an all-aluminum body that doubles up as a heatsink, and a combination of USB 3.0 and FireWire 800 interfaces. The enclosure is designed for desks, not exactly pockets.

Available soon, the Neutrino U3+ from Akitio will be priced at US $79.

Dell expands XPS laptop range Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/dell-expands-xps-laptoprange/16416.html June 26th, 2012

Dell is expanding its XPS laptop range with the XPS 14 and XPS 15, providing portability, long battery life, and high performance in new screen sizes. The Neutrino U3+ provides fast interface options for both Mac and PC users, with FireWire 800 (FireWire 400 backwards-compatible), and USB 3.0 (USB 2.0 backwardscompatible). The enclosure draws power from an external power adapter, if connected to the host by FireWire. It can enclosure HDDs and SSDs in the 2.5-inch SATA formfactor, with up to 12.5 mm thickness (which is standard). Its controller supports drives with capacities up to 1 TB.

Dell is expanding its XPS laptop range with the XPS 14 and XPS 15, providing portability, long battery life, and high performance in new screen sizes. The XPS 14 touts a 14-inch 400 nit HD+ edge-to-edge display, a 20.7mm thinness, a backlit keyboard, and up to 11 hours of battery life. Storage options include traditional HDD, 500GB SSD, and a 32GB mSATA card, with Intel Rapid Start and Smart Response. Users can also choose a version of the XPS 14 with integrated mobile broadband, designed to prevent signal interference through its black leather back and built-in antennas. Dell NetReady provides a pay-as-you-go session-based mobile broadband service when WiFi is not available.

Its rear panel consists of a USB 3.0 micro type-B connector, a pair of FireWire 800 connectors (can daisy-chain), DC power input, and a hard power switch. The body is mostly made of a thick sheet of aluminum, the bottom portion of which is ridged, where heat dissipation takes place. The enclosure, thus is completely fan-less. The body doubles up as the drive's heatsink. It is also designed to be stackable with other enclosures of its kind.

The XPS 15 features a 15-inch edge-to-edge display that is up to 75 percent brighter than standard panels, a backlit keyboard, Nvidia graphics card, and optional integrated slot load Blu-ray disc drive, making it a good option for multimedia enthusiasts. Storage of up to 1TB HDD, 500GB SSD, and 32GB or 128GB mSATA cards are available.

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Both additions to the XPS lineup feature Dell ProSupport for business customers, providing remote and on-site technical support, the Trusted Platform Module for enhanced BitLocker encryption security, and Configuration Services that include customised BIOS settings and asset tags to help with deployment of XPS laptops in businesses. “Following the success of our XPS 13, our customers wanted to see more of the XPS brand,” said Sam Burd, VP of the Personal Computing Product Group at Dell. “The XPS 14 and 15 laptops offer powerful performance, thoughtful design and a superb user experience, along with enterprise-friendly features so you can use them for work and for play.” The XPS 14 has a starting price of $1,099, while the XPS 15 starts at $1,299. Both are available immediately in the US and select countries throughout the world through Dell.com.

Buffalo Ships MiniStation Thunderbolt + USB 3.0 Portable HDD Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/buffalo-ships-ministationthunderbolt--usb-3.0-portable-hdd/16414.html June 26th, 2012

Buffalo Technology started shipping the MiniStation Thunderbolt + USB 3.0 dual-interface portable hard drive. The drive was unveiled by Buffalo Japan a little earlier this month, before the Austin, Texas-based firm released it worldwide. The drive lets you use 10 Gb/s Thunderbolt, 5 Gb/s USB 3.0, and even the 480 Mb/s USB 2.0 interfaces. Buffalo Technology started shipping the MiniStation Thunderbolt + USB 3.0 dual-interface portable hard drive. The drive was unveiled by Buffalo Japan a little earlier this month, before the Austin, Texas-based firm released it worldwide. The drive lets you use 10 Gb/s Thunderbolt, 5 Gb/s USB 3.0, and even the 480 Mb/s USB 2.0 interfaces.

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The MiniStation Thunderbolt + USB 3.0 portable hard drive from Buffalo comes in two variants based on capacity: 500 GB (HD-PA500TU3) and 1 TB (HD-PA1.0TU3). Its combination of Thunderbolt and USB 3.0 interfaces lets users of both the latest Mac and PC ecosystems run the drives with zero interface bottlenecks. The drive draws power from whichever interface cable is connected. One of its sides has a USB 3.0 SuperSpeed micro-B connector and a Thunderbolt port. Since there's just one of these, users should ensure the drive stays at the end of their Thunderbolt daisy-chain, if they plan to use other devices in tandem, sharing the same port from the host machine. The drive is backwards-compatible with USB 2.0 HiSpeed interface.

The MiniStation Thunderbolt + USB 3.0 is housed in an aluminum body, with a translucent frosted top. It connects to Macs and PCs without needing any additional drivers. When connected to Macs, users can take advantage of Time Machine for backing up their data. Backed by a 3-year warranty, the 500 GB and 1 TB MiniStation Thunderbolt + USB 3.0 portable hard drive variants are priced at US $199.99 and US $299.99, respectively.

Sapphire Rolls Out HD 7870 FleX with Dual-X Graphics Card Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/sapphire-rolls-out-hd-7870-flexwith-dual-x-graphics-card/16413.html June 26th, 2012

Sapphire announced the Radeon HD 7870 FleX with DualX graphics card. It features a reconfigured display output logic, which supports up to three DVI monitors, without needing active DP-DVI adapters. The card also features the company's Dual-X cooling solution. 4

June 26th, 2012

Sapphire announced the Radeon HD 7870 FleX with DualX graphics card. It features a reconfigured display output logic, which supports up to three DVI monitors, without needing active DP-DVI adapters. The first two monitors can be connected to the two DVI ports, while the third one can be connected to the HDMI port, without needing any active adapters. Since HDMI is electrically compatible with DVII, the third monitor not only gets a digital connection, but also one that is HDCP-compliant. The card hence delivers a a true SLS (Single Large Surface) display head that spans across the three physical displays.

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The card is 26 cm long. It draws power from two 6-pin PCIExpress power connectors. It can pair with any other Radeon HD 7800 series graphics card in CrossFireX configuration. Display outputs include one each of DVI-D, DVI-I, HDMI 1.4a, and DisplayPort 1.2 connectors. Sapphire did not disclose pricing, but we expect it to charge a tiny premium over other AMD reference design HD 7870 graphics cards.

Far Cry 3 delayed until December 4 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/far-cry-3-delayed-untildecember-4/16412.html June 26th, 2012

Ubisoft announced earlier today that Far Cry 3 will be delayed until December 4, three months later than the previous planned release date of September 4.

The second major feature is its cooling solution, said to be a variation of the Dual-X cooler, which the company used on a few high-end Radeon HD 7900 series models. The cooler uses a combination of 8 mm-thick and 6 mm-thick copper heat pipes to draw heat from the GPU, making direct contact with it, and transport it to the large aluminum fin stack that runs the entire length of the card. The stack is then ventilated by two 80 mm fans.

Ubisoft announced earlier today that Far Cry 3 will be delayed until December 4, three months later than the previous planned release date of September 4.

The Sapphire HD 7870 FleX with Dual-X graphics card ships with AMD reference clock speeds, 1000 MHz core and 1200 MHz (4.80 GHz GDDR5 effective) memory. The card holds 2 GB of GDDR5 memory across a 256-bit wide memory interface. Based on the 28 nm "Pitcairn XT" silicon, the Radeon HD 7870 packs 1,280 Graphics CoreNext stream processors, and is DirectX 11.1 compliant.

In Far Cry 3 you play as Jason Brody who is searching for a missing girlfriend on a stranded island full of insane mercenaries, especially Vaas—the lead antagonist. In the demo at E3, the sceneries are spectacular, but that’s if you have the time to actually catch a glimpse as you have to constantly stab or gun down the enemies. The new Far Cry will be powered by the Dunia 2 engine, and three other studios are involved in the game development. Ubisoft has yet to confirm why the game is delayed, and releasing the game three months later means that there are stiff competitions from titles such as Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 and Halo 4. However, since the Far Cry 3 new release date is around the holiday season, the competition factor may be negated by demands during Christmas. Ubisoft raked in $1.3 billion in sales last year and the Far Cry franchise has to do a lot with it. The third installment is highly anticipated, and hopefully Ubisoft doesn’t disappoint now that they’re taking an extra three months to work on the title. 5

June 26th, 2012

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Buffalo WCR-HP-G300 High Power Wireless Router Review Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/buffalo-wcr-hp-g300-high-powerwireless-router-review/16336.html June 26th, 2012

Buffalo is well known for their high power AirStation wireless routers and their latest WCR-HP-G300 wireless N router aims to provide better wireless coverage by eliminating dead spots at an affordable price tag. Let's see how well this entry level router does.

The AOSS/WPS and reset buttons are located on the right.

The WCR-HP-G300 is an entry level wireless router targeted at the consumer and Small Office Home Office (SOHO) market. It comes in a matt white finish and is extremely compact - its width can literally fit one's palm. The Buffalo also comes with a pair of 8dBi removable 2.4GHz dipole antennas for better reception.

We managed to source a much more detailed internal image from the FCC product documentation website. The WCR-HP-G300 is powered by a Ralink RT3352 SoC 802.11b/g/n 2T2R WLAN System on a Chip (SoC). It also has Macronix MX25L3206EM2I-12G 16MB RAM and Macronix MX25L3205D 4MB Flash. On the top right of the board, are electrical pads for Serial and JTAG connections.

The front of the router holds the LED indicators for power, wireless, security, router and diagnostic. Apparently, there are none for LAN or WAN.

GELID Releases 50 and 60 mm Silent Series Fans Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/gelid-releases-50-and-60-mm-silentseries-fans/16411.html June 26th, 2012

GELID Solutions expanded its Silent series fan lineup, not with newer, bigger, or quieter models, but for a change, with smaller, sub-80 mm ones. It launched the Silent 5 and Silent 6, which measure 50 mm and 60 mm, respectively. Although in sizes that scare away silent-PC enthusiasts, particularly users of compact HTPC cases, GELID is betting on low-noise to drive the two products home. At the rear of the router, we find a pair of RP-SMA connectors for the antennas, four LAN ports, a WAN port and a power jack.

GELID Solutions expanded its Silent series fan lineup, not with newer, bigger, or quieter models, but for a change, with smaller, sub-80 mm ones. It launched the Silent 5 and Silent 6, which measure 50 mm and 60 mm, respectively. Although

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in sizes that scare away silent-PC enthusiasts, GELID is betting on low-noise.

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and workstations as a computational accelerator. While the performance of the seed units was either not that great or plain & simple confidential, its X86 + SIMD base was supposed to greatly help programmers comfortably make use of it without the CUDA or OpenCL complications. And, it did work - according to our high level sources in both China and Singapore, in some cases the code porting time differential is huge, like a few months to handle CUDA becoming few days to complete the MIC code port. So, right after the ISC supercomputer show in Germany, there were two interesting updates from our friends.

The Silent 5 (model: FN-SX05-40) measures 50 x 50 mm, with a thickess of 15 mm. It can spin at speeds of up to 4,000 RPM, pushing 12.9 / 21.94 CFM of air. Even at those speeds, its noise output is only as high as 23 dBA, according to the company. The fan uses standard 3-pin fan connector. The Silent 6 (model: FN-SX06-38), on the other hand, measures 60 x 60 mm, with 15.5 mm thickness. Its top speed is lower, at 3,200 RPM, although its maximum noise output is a tiny bit higher than that of the Series 5, at 24 dBA. At its top speed, it pushes 16 / 27.2 CFM of air. Like its smaller sibling, it uses 3-pin fan connector to draw power.

First, Intel Xeon Phi has managed to kick out the GPUs as the FP (floating point) accelerator in several very large upcoming deals worldwide, including some in the 100 PFLOPs range, for 2013 and 2014. We are talking here about the replacements for the current single-digit leaders of the TOP 500 list, that right now use Nvidia Tesla as the accelerator. A, say, 100 PFLOPs supercomputer composed of an equal proportion of, say, Ivy Bridge EP Xeons and Xeon Phi's - i.e. each dual CPU node having dual Phi - would have in excess of 80,000 Xeon CPUs and 80,000 MICs for the users to play with, as a single machine. Most importantly, like it or not, as a single homogeneous X86 instruction set machine. But wait, you'd say that the upcoming year-end Tesla K20 based on the GK110 would have higher DP FP peak performance at 1.5 TFLOPs compared to just slightly over 1 TFLOPs for the first MIC? So, Nvidia should keep the performance lead?

Both models feature Hydro Dynamic Bearings, which along with "perfectly balanced fan blades," contribute to the "silent" operation. Both models are priced at US $5 (S $6.4).

Intel Xeon Phi steals top HPC tenders, more SKUs to come Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/intel-xeon-phi-steals-top-hpctenders-more-skus-to-come/16410.html June 26th, 2012

Even prior to its name unveiling last week - or official announcement later in the year - Intel's Xeon Phi shook the supercomputer world with supposedly snatching some of the upcoming large projects mostly away from Nvidia Tesla. What about its performance?

Well, that's where the second point comes in from the sources. Intel is still tuning the clock speeds and final performance of the initial generation Xeon Phi, and, by the time the November SC show in the States comes, it might come much, much, closer to the claimed figures by Nvidia. Also, with Intel's process resources and binning capabilities, don't be surprised to see a few different MIC speed bins and even memory sizes, including a larger 16 GB RAM model which Nvidia can't match with the GK110 for now. What should Nvidia do? Well, they have to figure out how to handle being squeezed between the Xeon Phi 'common X86 ease of use' and AMD Teraflop DP-FP consumer Graphics Core Next GPUs at consumer prices. Then, picking up ARM may not have proved to be such a smart idea at the end, if looking at high end computing. Simply, among the RISC architectures, ARM's multi-decade layers of baggage, and committee-style decision approach, don't help to scale over the X86, and there are much leaner RISC, like MIPS or Alpha, lurking around - the last two very much at the high end, coming from China...

Intel's MIC, now officially christened Xeon Phi, was known to have been seeded for a while across few dozen test sites worldwide, including our region - mostly in supercomputers 7

June 26th, 2012

Apple Changes Its Website, Virus Proof No More Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/apple-changes-its-website-virusproof-no-more/16360.html June 26th, 2012

For countless years, Apple insisted that their operating system is safer than ones running competing operating systems such as Microsoft Windows or Linux. At the same time, Apple was one of easiest systems to break in (firewall disabled by default) and now, with egos wounded (and legally liable) from Flashback botnet, a change happened. Apple gathered a lot of negative press in terms of security, with hackers and crackers gaining access to the user files within half a minute, becoming a running joke of conferences such as Defcon. Still, the company rode the wave of "I'm a Mac and I'm a PC" focusing on the "fact" that Windows-based PC systems get viruses, while OSX-based PC systems cannot (be inflicted). With the fact not being true anymore, and Flashback botnet destroying the sense of security for the already insecure platform - Apple did what it does the best - deploy its legal system to remove any traces of potential liability for the company.

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Well, Apple users will get the same dosage of security the 10.8 version of the OS X codenamed "Mountain Lion" will bring a similar feature, an "Apple-ized" version of Microsoft's UAC named "Gatekeeper". At the end of the day, attacking other platforms based on your claim of security is something that will only bring attention and provoke people from other side of computing specter.

NZXT Switch 810 Case Review Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/nzxt-switch-810-casereview/16409.html June 26th, 2012

NZXT is a well-known company amongst enthusiasts which ever since 2004 has been developing and distributing some of the best computer cases available. Today the company has one of the largest computer case selections available, with a product for every kind of user and budget. In this review we will examine the Switch 810, a case from their crafted series designed with hardcore enthusiasts and gamers in mind. Let us see what NZXT has in store for hardcore enthusiasts this summer. NZXT is a well-known company amongst enthusiasts which ever since 2004 has been developing and distributing some of the best computer cases available. Today the company has one of the largest computer case selections available, with a product for every kind of user and budget. In this review we will examine the Switch 810, a case from their crafted series designed with hardcore enthusiasts and gamers in mind. Let us see what NZXT has in store for hardcore enthusiasts this summer. • Unique hybrid full tower chassis optimized for extreme liquid cooling, airflow, or silence • Supports high-end water cooling solutions up to three fans for push and pull configuration: 90mm of internal top space with top 360/420mm and bottom 140/240mm radiator support for unmatched liquid cooling • Four watercooling cutouts for easy liquid cooling management on the rear panel • Spacious CPU cutout for mounting high-end CPU coolers without removing the motherboard

The company is slowly changing its approach to security, with Geniuses in Genius bars recommending Anti-Virus products, security guides for mobile operating system iOS (iPhone, iPad, iPod). Furthermore, do you remember User Account Control (UAC), a controversial security routine which debuted with Windows Vista, continuing its existence with Windows 7 and Windows 8 as well? UAC was designed to prevent users from installing different application types, restricting access to websites and so on and so forth.

• Removable top 5.25” plates to accommodate wide radiators • Clever hybrid fin design allows the user to choose between maximum airflow or sound reduction • Innovative right-mounted HDDs for easy hard drive replacement • Removable HDD pull-out cages and large storage capacity for 7 hard drives • Equipped with two 140mm pivot fan slots for directing airflow at 15? to the VGA and CPU 8

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• Rear white light for visibility in dark environments with a toggle switch • Dual high-speed USB 3.0, hard drive dock along with a SD card reader for transfer and quick access to multimedia • 5.25" hard drive hot swap with SATA III support • Nine expansion slots for installing EATX motherboards with Quad SLI or Triple Crossfire

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“In order to satisfy high standard requirements from customers who are willing to enjoy significantly improved performance of their PCs, SK Hynix has released the highend SSD products with our high performance NAND Flash,” says Ji Bum Kim, head of SK Hynix Worldwide Marketing & Sales Division. SK Hynix’s client side SSDs are already released in Japan and company spokesperson says that Korean and U.S. markets are next on the company’s agenda.

• Supreme cooling capacity with up to ten 140/120mm fans • Stress-free wire management and 23mm clearance in the rear allows for superb wire-tucks • Ten large specialized cutout holes for easy cable management • Easily removable bottom filters in the front and rear to prevent dust from entering • Tool-less 5.25” and 3.5”/2.5” SSD hard drive installation for convenience and ease of accessibility • Large acrylic window with a view to show off the interior of your rig

SK Hynix launches high performance client side SDD Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/sk-hynix-launches-highperformance-client-side-sdd/16408.html June 26th, 2012

SK Hynix has officially launched its client side 2.5’’ SSD boasting SATA III features, 128 GB or 256 GB options, and TRIM. The packaging definitely seems fancy and “high-end”, but will the NANDs hold up and keep up with competitors? Check out SK Hynix’s SDD site for full specs and info. Update: Since some of you may wonder what the controller is for the Hynix line of SSDs, it may be using the LAMD LM87800 controller. The controller is not listed under the specs section, but the LAMD acquisition suggests that Hynix is using a LAMD controller--officially or not. Press release:

SK Hynix has officially launched its client side 2.5’’ SSD boasting SATA III features, 128 GB or 256 GB options, and TRIM. The newly released high performance SSD will have a max read speed of 510Mbps (random, 55K IOPS max) and max write speed of 470Mbps (random, 85K IOPS max). However, perhaps what makes Hynix's SDD stands out from the rest is that the drive has ONFI synchronous NANDs built on 20nm processes.

SK hynix Inc. (‘SK hynix’ or ‘the Company’) announced that it has entered into an agreement to acquire California-based storage solution company Link_A_Media Devices Corporation (‘LAMD’). LAMD, founded in 2004, is a leader in the development of semiconductor system-on-chip (SoC) solutions for the data storage market. These SoC solutions, also called controllers, interface with processors to significantly increase the speed and reliability of Flash memory. Upon completion of the

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acquisition, LAMD will join SK hynix as a business unit focused on customized NAND based solutions.

Senior Manager

“We are excited to become a part of the SK hynix family. This will enable us to bring our advanced controller solutions to a wide range of data storage products to meet the rapidly increasing demands of the worldwide business and consumer markets” As various mobile applications such as smartphones and tablet PCs are being rapidly adopted and cloud computing grows in popularity, the NAND Flash market has been evolving from raw NAND memory solutions for USB and memory cards to valueadded products equipped with controllers. The role of the NAND controller in premium products such as e-MMC (embedded Multi Media Card) and SSDs (Solid State Drives) has become increasingly important to meet the high memory densities and improved interface speeds required by end users.

seongae.park@skhynix.com

“We expect our NAND Flash competitiveness will be further strengthened by the acquisition of LAMD which has extensive expertise in controller technology and excellent engineering resources. SK hynix will leverage this acquisition and continuously develop value-added NAND solutions and respond to our customers’ needs,” said Mr. Oh Chul Kwon, President and CEO of SK hynix. “We are excited to become a part of the SK hynix family. This will enable us to bring our advanced controller solutions to a wide range of data storage products to meet the rapidly increasing demands of the worldwide business and consumer markets,” said Dr. Hemant Thapar, Founder and CEO of LAMD. About SK hynix Inc. SK hynix Inc., Korea, is the world’s top tier semiconductor supplier offering Dynamic Random Access Memory chips (DRAM), Flash memory chips (NAND Flash) and CMOS Image Sensors (CIS) for a wide range of distinguished customers globally. The Company’s shares are traded on the Korea Exchange, and the Global Depository shares are listed on the Luxemburg Stock Exchange. About Link_A_Media Devices Link_A_Media Devices, Santa Clara, California, USA is a leader in the development of semiconductor SoC solutions for the data storage market. Its mixed signal processing and iterative data recovery technologies enable hard disk drive (HDD) and solid-state drive (SSD) OEMs to increase storage density and reduce manufacturing costs. These advantages enable Link_A_Media Devices customers to continue to meet the growing demand for high-performance and low-cost data storage in consumer, computing and enterprise storage networking applications.

BioWare warns extended Mass Effect 3 ending won't satisfy all Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/bioware-warns-extended-masseffect-3-ending-won-t-satisfy-all/16407.html June 26th, 2012

BioWare has warned that its Extended Cut for Mass Effect 3, expanding upon the controversial and disappointing original ending, will not satisfy everyone. BioWare has warned that its Extended Cut for Mass Effect 3, expanding upon the controversial and disappointing original ending, will not satisfy everyone. Casey Hudson, executive producer of the game, said that he expects “a whole new wave of discussion and debate, maybe even controversy” over the Extended Cut, despite BioWare's efforts to address extensive criticism of the ending for the third instalment of the Mass Effect series. “You can never completely satisfy everyone,” Hudson said. “We've seen a whole range of feedback, ranging from people who wanted a total redo, to people who had concerns and questions about the original endings, to people who loved the original endings and have told us they don't want to change anything.” Hudson claims that BioWare did not create the Extended Cut to make everybody happy, but rather because it saw an opportunity to add value to the game experience. That may be a hard point to sell, however, as there is little doubt that the studio came up with the free DLC pack due to the controversy over the original ending. The situation even saw the Better Business Bureau and Advertising Standards Authority get involved, due to BioWare's claims that player actions would affect the ending, which turned out not to be the case.

Contacts for Link_A_Media Devices Seongae Park, +82.2.3459.5325 Corporate Communications 10

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“There was some feedback that we can't address,” Hudon said. “There are people who just outright rejected the whole concept of the endings, and wanted us to start from scratch and redo everything. And we can't do that because that's not our story, we wouldn't know how to write that story.” This is further highlighted in an FAQ for the DLC pack, which states that the Extended Cut is “an expansion of the original endings” rather than a fundamental change. It provides greater detail, particularly on the impact of player decisions, which was for many gamers the crux of their complaints. The Extended Cut launches tomorrow, 26 June, for Xbox 360 and PC customers throughout the world. PlayStation 3 customers in the US will get access to it on the same day, but European PlayStation customers will have to wait until 4 July.

Microsoft may get cable companies to subsidise $99 Xbox 720 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/microsoft-may-get-cable-companiesto-subsidise-99-xbox-720/16406.html June 26th, 2012

Microsoft's next-generation console, the Xbox 720, may be subsidised by cable TV providers, making it more affordable for customers, according to an analyst. Microsoft's next-generation console, the Xbox 720, may be subsidised by cable TV providers, making it more affordable for customers, according to an analyst. Michael Pachter, analyst at Wedbush Securities, claims that TV will be such a big factor of the next Xbox console that cable companies will cover some of the cost of the device in exchange for a subscription contract. “It's pretty clear to me that Microsoft intends to allow the Xbox 720 to function as a cable TV box, allowing cable television service providers to broadcast over the Internet through the box, with SmartGlass as the remote controller, and with the Xbox 720 using Windows 8 to split the TV signal into multiple feeds, allowing consumers to divert different channel feeds to different displays within the home.”

Pachter claims that we could see the Xbox 720 selling for as little as $99, vastly cheaper than existing consoles and the expected low price of the Wii U, simply by locking customers into a two year subscription TV contract. This might sound a little far-fetched at first, but there is already a precedent for this in the $99 Xbox 360 when gamers sign a two-year Xbox LIVE contract. This model has also worked extremely well in the smartphone and tablet markets, where expensive devices can be sold for little or nothing, providing consumers commit to a regular bill. This would make the major selling point of the new console about TV rather than games, though an updated Kinect could help when it comes to competition with Nintendo's Wii U. The Wii U has a year advantage, however, with the Xbox 720 not expected for release until Christmas 2013. However, Pachter believes it won't actually release until Spring 2014 and that it will only launch with a limited number of stock, making for a potentially low-key launch.

BlackBerry maker RIM considering splitting company in two Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/blackberry-maker-rim-consideringsplitting-company-in-two/16405.html June 26th, 2012

Research In Motion (RIM), the company behind the BlackBerry, is considering splitting into two separate businesses, according to a report in a UK newspaper. Research In Motion (RIM), the company behind the BlackBerry, is considering splitting into two separate businesses, according to a report in a UK newspaper. The Sunday Times wrote that RIM is contemplating dividing its mobile phone manufacturing unit from its messaging network, but it did not reveal its sources for this claim.

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The report even suggests that RIM may sell the mobile unit, with potential buyers including Amazon and Facebook, effectively following suit with Motorola, which split into Motorola Solutions and Motorola Mobility, the latter of which it sold to Google for $12.5 billion.

The messaging network may not be immune from a selloff either, with Apple and Google as potential buyers or licensees of the technology, despite years of rivalry that has seen RIM go from a leader in the smartphone arena to a company struggling to keep up. RIM could split into separate companies and not sell to anyone, but this seems like an unlikely event, as the two units would still struggle independently as if they were still operating under one banner.

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bench? Lian Li has just the chassis for you. The Taiwanbased premium PC chassis designer announced the PCV750, an E-ATX full-tower with a front-mounted PSU bay. It will be available in three variants: PC-V750A (all-silver exterior and interior), PC-V750B (all-black exterior, silver interior), and PC-V750WX (all-black exterior and interior, with an acrylic windowed side-panel).

The PC-V750 measures 230mm x (H) 440mm x (D) 586mm, its designers saved it some height by locating its PSU tray from its typical bottom-rear to bottom-front; and pushing the 3.5-inch / 2.5-inch drive cage up, eating into what could've been a bunch of seldom-used 5.25-inch bays. The case thus ends up with just the one 5.25-inch bay, a zesty nine 3.5-inch bays, of which six have SATA back-plates, giving them hot-plugging capabilities. These bays can be converted to 2.5-inch bays. The other three squat on the floor of the case.

Another alternative solution is for the company to remain as one, but for a big technology company like Microsoft to come in and buy a large stake, which would give it some muchneeded funds. Microsoft may be willing to part with some cash if it can secure RIM's support for Windows Phone 8, but the move may be even riskier than the partnership with Nokia, which has so far failed to pay off.

Lian Li Outs PC-V750 E-ATX Chassis Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/lian-li-outs-pc-v750-e-atxchassis/16404.html June 26th, 2012

While the motherboard tray of the PC-V750 is wide enough to hold E-ATX motherboards, it's also tall, with three additional expansion slot bays, that can be used to accommodate XL-ATX (eg: EVGA X79 Classified) and HPTX (eg: EVGA SR-X); although the tray only has cutout for one CPU socket. A reinforcement beam runs the entire height of the case, and holds expansion cards firmly in place, preventing PCB bending.

Lian Li released its newest aluminum PC chassis, the PCV750. It is designed for E-ATX motherboards, although with as many as 10 expansion slot bays, it could become a chassis owners of EVGA SR-X platform seriously consider getting, after having fun to their hearts' content, with it on a testbench. So your EVGA SR-X system is beginning to wear off on you, and you worry about keeping it on an open-air test12

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The PSU bay of the PC-V750 is located at the bottom-front portion of the case. A 3-pin AC power extension cable runs through the case, connecting to it. Air ventilation is aplenty. The entire front portion of the case is perforated. Right next to the drive cage are two 120 mm front intake fans. Two 140 mm fans deck up the top. A 120 mm rear exhaust fan makes for the rest of the included fans. Front panel connectivity includes two USB 3.0 ports (standard header), HD audio front-panel jacks, and one each of USB 2.0/1.1 and eSATA.

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Vampires, fiction or not, are the craze these days, and what’s a good game without vampires? The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim’sDawnguard DLC drops June 26th for the Xbox 360. The Dawnguard DLC will add approximately 10-20 hours of vampiric twist to the game.

Lian Li did not release the pricing of the three PC-V750 variants.

Skyrim: Dawnguard available June 26 for $20 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/skyrim-dawnguard-availablejune-26-for-20/16403.html June 26th, 2012

Vampires, fiction or not, are the craze these days, and what’s a good game without vampires? The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim’s Dawnguard DLC drops June 26th for the Xbox 360. The Dawnguard DLC will add approximately 10-20 hours of vampiric twist to the game.

About a week ago, Bethesda offered beta downloads for a selective few, and if players can dig enough into the DLC they may find more than 20+ hours of gameplay. The Dawnguard DLC will only be available in English and for the Xbox 360 at least for a month before other systems. There are no words on when the PS3 and PC DLCs will be available, much less in non-English. Dawnguard can be purchased for 1600 MS or $20, and that’s nearly half the price of the full game, so hopefully players can get a lot bangs for their bucks.

Updated: ASUS Working on Dual-HD 7870-based Republic of Gamers ARES Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/updated-asus-working-on-dualhd-7870-based-republic-of-gamers-ares/16402.html June 26th, 2012

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ASUS is reportedly working on its second Republic of Gamers (ROG) dual-GPU graphics card of the season, after the ROG MARS 3. Branded under the ARES name, the card will be a CrossFire-on-a-stick solution with two Radeon HD 7870 GHz Edition "Pitcairn XT" GPUs. ASUS probably avoided a pair of "Tahiti XT2" chips to prevent competition with the MARS 3, or even capitalize on a pricepoint vacuum. ASUS is reportedly working on its second Republic of Gamers (ROG) dual-GPU graphics card of the season, after the ROG MARS 3 we spotted at Computex. Branded under the ARES name, the card will be a CrossFire-on-a-stick solution with two Radeon HD 7870 GHz Edition "Pitcairn XT" GPUs. ASUS is probably avoiding using a pair of Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition "Tahiti XT2" chips, to prevent competition with the MARS 3, or even capture a price-point vacuum. This is ASUS' second ARES-branded graphics card. The first-generation ROG ARES was driven by a pair of Radeon HD 5870 GPUs. It is pictured below.

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Club 3D First with Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/club-3d-first-with-radeon-hd-7970ghz-edition/16400.html June 26th, 2012

The introduction of Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition may have distrurbed the product lineups of some of AMD's bigger add-in board (AIB) partners, especially those with recently-launched or upcoming factory-overclocked HD 7970 (standard), but Club 3D is unfazed. The company is perhaps the industry's first with a HD 7970 GHz Edition SKU. The introduction of Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition may have distrurbed the product lineups of some of AMD's bigger add-in board (AIB) partners, especially those with recently-launched or upcoming factory-overclocked HD 7970 (standard), but Club 3D is unfazed. The company is perhaps the industry's first with a HD 7970 GHz Edition SKU.

To us, the second idea sounds more plausible. With the HD 7970 GHz Edition and GTX 680 firmly priced around the $500-$600 mark, with dual-HD 7970 cards being aplenty, priced around the $1000 mark, and of course NVIDIA's $1000 poetry on silicon (the GTX 690), there seems to be a vacuum created in the $650-$800 range, in which a graphics card that outperforms top single-GPU graphics cards, including highly-overclocked HD 7970 and GTX 680, could find room. The easiest option in front of ASUS is using a pair of 28 nm "Pitcairn XT" GPUs, which go into making the $350 Radeon HD 7870 GHz Edition graphics card. According to the source, the new ARES will pack two fullyunlocked "Pitcairn" GPUs (with complete stream processor count and memory bus width). ASUS has not finalized the clock speeds the two will ship with, but that the two will feature 2 GB of GDDR5 memory, each. The card will draw power from two 8-pin PCIe power connectors, and will have a TDP estimated to be around 300W. It's also quite likely that ASUS uses a triple-slot cooling solution, much like the first-generation ARES. Interestingly, the dual-GTX 680 MARS 3 uses a dual-slot cooler. Its tentative launch date is still being finalized. Update (26/06/2012): We've been told by ASUS that the project has been axed, and that the card will not make it to the market. Less than expected price/performance could be behind the axe, and it makes sense. Given that the average HD 7870 GHz Edition card sells for US $350, a pair of these (GPUs, memory, VRM), along with a roughly-$50 PCIe bridge chip, and premium cooling, not to mention the design R&D, would have pushed the end retail price to $800, if not more, which gives it a bad price/performance ratio compared to existing dual-GPU options.

Carrying the model number CGAX-7977SO, the card by Club 3D sticks to AMD's reference design, for both the PCB and cooling assembly, with just company branding stickers to make for the difference. The card even sticks to reference clock speeds of 1000 MHz (GPU), 1050 MHz (PowerTune Boost), and 6.00 GHz (memory), for the Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition. Based on the 28 nm Tahiti silicon (Tahiti XT2 variant), the Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition is driven by AMD Graphics CoreNext architecture, with 2,048 stream processors, 128 TMUs, 32 ROPs, and a 384-bit wide GDDR5 memory interface, holding 3 GB of memory. The card supports PCIExpress 3.0 x16 bus interface, draws power from 6 pin + 8 pin PCIe power connectors, and its display outputs include dual-link DVI, HDMI, and two mini-DisplayPort connectors. Club 3D Radeon HD 7970 GHz Edition will even stick to AMD's suggested price of US $499 (S $637), though a small (+$20) mark-up could be added, depending on the region.

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Zalman Unveils 1250W 80 Plus Platinum PSU Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/zalman-unveils-1250w-80-plusplatinum-psu/16399.html June 26th, 2012

Zalman unveiled its newest premium power supply, the ZM1250 Platinum. Its name gives away a big chunk of its chops: 1250W capacity and 80 Plus Platinum efficiency rating conformance. It also features modular cabling, and a large, quiet 140 mm fan. The ZM1250 even has an interesting power-distribution chart.

Our informed guess about the OEM of the ZM1250 Platinum, looking at some of the pictures below, is Channel Well Technology (CWT), certainly a new platform. One can find CWT regulars (for PSUs in this range), such as dual-transformer design, a protection IC governing the secondary stage, APFC and LLC resonant circuitry, and higher efficiency DC-DC switching (for the various voltage domains). The protection IC shields against over/ under voltage/current and short-circuit. Another IC handles cooling, care of a large 140 mm temperature-controlled fan.

Korean company Zalman, which specializes in cooling, power, and case-modding products, with ties to the PC enthusiast community that go a long way back, unveiled its latest high-end power supply, the ZM1250 Platinum. The model was made available to select markets outside Korea late last week, and its fact-sheet was scored by Overclockers Ukraine.

The ZM1250 Platinum delivers 1,250W continuous power, its efficiency is backed by the coveted 80 Plus Platinum badge. Up to 93 percent conversion efficiency is guaranteed by its designers, at a load-range that spans across 20 to 100 percent (no "50 percent" rider for maximum efficiency). Other equally important compliances include ATX v2.3, SSIEPS v2.93, and ErP Lot6 2010.

Designed for the high-end market segment, the ZM1250 Platninum from Zalman is expected to be priced at US $320 (about S $410).

Samsung's stacking method for arranging icons on Android Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/samsung-s-stacking-method-forarranging-icons-on-android/16394.html June 26th, 2012

The ZM1250 Platinum uses a dual forward switching topology, with a full-bridge and LLC resonance circuit, DCDC module. It uses a dual asymmetric +12V rail design, with a 45A rail powering the 24 pin ATX, CPU/EPS, which are fixed to the unit, and and a large number of SATA, Molex, and Berg (floppy) connectors through five peripheral power hubs; all of which are modular connectors. The larger 65A rail drives the eight 6+2 pin PCIe power connectors, of which two are fixed, and six modular.

Samsung is coming up with a new method for organizing icons for the Android OS in response to Apple’s claim over the folder organizing method.

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Chinese consumers think Apple is treating them unfairly Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/chinese-consumers-think-apple-istreating-them-unfairly/16392.html June 26th, 2012

An insurgence of complaints from Chinese consumers due to “unfair maintenance terms” by Apple has prompted various Chinese consumer organizations to deem Apple as an unjust company.

Samsung is coming up with a new method for organizing icons for the Android OS in response to Apple’s claim over the folder organizing method. Traditionally, items on a screen can be grouped together by dragging them into a folder, but Samsung is proposing that the items should be “stacked” instead. Although it’s an intuitive work-a-around of the folder method, the stacking is limited to the certain amount of screen space.

An insurgence of complaints from Chinese consumers due to “unfair maintenance terms” by Apple has prompted various Chinese consumer organizations to deem Apple as an unjust company. The outburst of unsatisfied customers came about when Chinese consumers were (among other unjustly treatment) given an ultimatum to either pick up their repaired iPhone and iPad within a certain time frame or else they give up their ownership to the devices. According to globaltimes.cn, a local complaint center in Tianjin, alone, received 256 complaints against Apple from the beginning of 2012 to the end of May. Qiu Baochang, president the legal panel at China Consumers’ Association, says that Apple doesn’t lack in innovation, but they definitely lack in the consumer support and appreciation department.

There are various proposed methods for expanding the stacked icons, which include expansions of the icons like an accordion, or through a scrolling interface. The method that most closely resembles the opening and closing of a folder is a “secondary” screen that reveals all the stacked icons. When it comes down to it, the stacked icon is a folder without the folder icon aspect. For the rest of the pictoral depictions please visit patentbolt.com.

“The reason why Apple can neglect consumers' interests is because it has innovative products to win popularity, but protection of consumers' interests is more important at present,” he says. A Chinese resident (surenamed “Bi”) has already gone as far as to file the country’s first consumer lawsuit against Apple, because Apple shortened the warrantee period on his product--which, under regulations has to be at least one year. According to Bi’s lawyer, Bi contacted Apple’s customer service but nothing was resolved, and now he is seeking for the law to take his side to protect his consumer’s rights. In that same stretch, Bi’s lawyer also “hopes the lawsuit can

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help change the company’s (Apple) attitude toward Chinese consumer.”

Published by: VR-Zone June 26th, 2012

Google lowers prices on Maps API usage Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/google-lowers-prices-on-maps-apiusage/16391.html June 26th, 2012

D-link recently released the Cloud 1200 and Cloud 2000 routers, and as it says in its name the routers are enhanced for mobility connections and cloud storage. D-link recently released the Cloud 1200 and Cloud 2000 routers, and as it says in its name the routers are enhanced for mobility connections and cloud storage.

High traffic sites that previously paid high fees for using Google’s Maps API will have future bills cut by over 87%. In the past, Google charged $4.00 for every 1,000 maps downloaded, but under the new policy that fee is cut down to just $0.50.

Like many other routers, the coffee mug shaped routers enable 802.11n Wi-Fi sharing between devices. The Cloud 1200 is a single-band wireless router set at 300Mbps, but the Cloud 2000 is a dual-band using 5GHz and 2.4GHz with a 600Mbps connectivity.

High traffic sites that previously paid high fees for using Google’s Maps API will have future bills cut by over 87%. In the past, Google charged $4.00 for every 1,000 maps downloaded, but under the new policy that fee is cut down to just $0.50. Major sites such as foursquare relied heavily on Mapsgenerated content, and because of Google’s hefty fee they decided to move to OpenStreetMap as an alternative. A site that relied on Maps and generated a million hits a day had to pay $3,900/day in the past, not a small monthly bill for startups if multiplied by 30 days in a month. Google calculates that only 0.35% of its Maps API users have to pay, but that number does not imply the huge sum that Google gets from the high traffic sites. Another reason why Google is slashing prices on Maps usage is perhaps due to Apple’s recent announcement that they will use their own map features in the next iOS. Competition from Apple and other cheaper alternative map services do not appear in Google’s announcement, but it is a huge reason why Google is lowering its pricing.

D-Link releases Cloud Router 1200 and 2000 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/d-link-releases-cloud-router-1200and-2000/16390.html

Aside from Wi-Fi sharing functionalities, the 1200 and 2000 both have USB ports that can be used to connect storage devices for cloud sharing of music, videos, files, etc… between devices. Android and iOS users can also download the D-Link SharePort Mobile app to connect their mobile devices to the network and access the shared files. Parental control and user management is also easy in the 1200 and 2000, because users can control who or which device can connect to the network using the mydlink software. For router control while on the go, users can download the mydlink Lite app for iOS and Android. The Cloud Router 1200 is $89.99, and the Cloud Router 2000 is $129.99 as listed on dlink.com. Coffee not included.

Thermaltake Armor Revo Snow Edition Case Review Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/thermaltake-armor-revo-snowedition-case-review/16389.html

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(Converted from one 5.25” drive bay)

June 26th, 2012

Hidden: 6 x 3.5’’ or 2.5’’

There is an endless number of enthusiast-grade cases available today, enough to satisfy both the taste and wallet of any kind of user; and most of which are black. Today we have a new performance case from Thermaltake for review, the new version of the renowned Armor series, the Armor Revo Snow Edition. Much like the name suggests, this case features a fundamental difference from the majority of the products currently available; a glossy snow white color which could turn Apple green with envy. There is an endless number of enthusiast-grade cases available today, enough to satisfy both the taste and wallet of any kind of user; and most of which are black. Today we have a new performance case from Thermaltake for review, the new version of the renowned Armor series, the Armor Revo Snow Edition. Much like the name suggests, this case features a fundamental difference from the majority of the products currently available; a glossy snow white color which could turn Apple green with envy. P/N Case Type Dimension (H x W x D) Net Weight Side Panel Color Material Cooling System

VO200M6W2N Full Tower 586 x 254 x 552 mm (23.1 x 10 x 21.7 inch) 11.5Kg / 25.35lb Transparent Window Exterior & Interior : Black & White SECC Front (intake) : 200 x 200 x 30 mm Blue LED fan x 1 (600~800rpm, 13~15dBA)

Expansion Slots Motherboards I/O Ports PSU LCS Upgradable Other

HDD Docking: 1 x 3.5’’ or 2.5’’ 8 9.6” x 9.6” (Micro ATX), 12” x 9.6” (ATX) USB 3.0 x 2, USB 2.0 x 2, eSATA x 1, HD Audio x 1 Standard PS2 PSU Supports 1/2”?3/8”?1/4” water tube CPU cooler height limitation: 180mm VGA length limitation: 330mm

Motorola Mobility stays separate from Google Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/motorola-mobility-stays-separatefrom-google/16388.html June 26th, 2012

Google paid $12.9 billion for Motorola Mobility last month, and after countless hurdles to get approval from regulators Google announced they intend to keep Motorola Mobility as its own entity.

Rear (exhaust) : 140 x 140 x 25 mm Turbo fan (1000rpm,16dBA) Top (exhaust) : 200 x 200 x 30 mm Blue LED fan (600~800rpm, 13~15dBA) 140 x 140 x 25 mm or 120 x 120 x 25 mm (optional) Side (intake) :

Drive Bays

Google paid $12.9 billion for Motorola Mobility last month, and after countless hurdles to get approval from regulators Google announced they intend to keep Motorola Mobility as its own entity.

Plug&Play 200 x 200 x 30 mm fan (600~800rpm, 13~15dBA)

“It's important it stays on its own battlefield. We are not integrating Motorola with Google, we’re making sure it has everything it needs to win in its own space. You shouldn’t expect full integration of the two companies,” Google’s Chief Finance Officer, Patrick Pichette, said.

Bottom (Intake) : 120 x 120 x 25 mm (optional) Accessible: 4 x 5.25’’, 1 x 3.5’’

Although Google owns Motorola Mobility, there will not be a “Googlerola” brand in the near future. Google now has access to a portfolio of 17,000 patents, which will give Google a competitive edge in the smartphone and tablet 18

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market. Combine the patents and a mobile R&D department with Google’s thriving Android OS and the world has a smartphone/tablet conglomerate. Eric Schmidt, Google’s Chairman, affirms that the Motorola Mobility purchase is to help Google further its ideals of modernity through the acquisition of Motorola Mobility’s “products…people…[and] innovation.” “We bought Motorola for the sum of the patents, the products, the people, the innovation,” he says. It is unknown how Google intends to wedge itself into Motorola Mobility’s structure, but as it stands Motorola Mobility will make its own product and consumers will continue to have “Motorola” devices instead of “Googlerola” devices.

Google attempts to preserve endangered languages

According to a map set up by Google, nearly every continent has languages that are at risk, endangered, severely endangered, or lost forever. Google is calling upon any interested parties, organizations, and individuals that would like to contribute to the project to visit Google.org for more information.

Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/google-attempts-to-preserveendangered-languages/16387.html June 26th, 2012

According to Google, more than 3,000 languages are on the brink of extinction. By 2100, only 50% of the languages spoken today will remain. So instead of letting those 3,000 languages die out, Google is attempting to save it.

According to Google, more than 3,000 languages are on the brink of extinction. By 2100, only 50% of the languages spoken today will remain. So instead of letting those 3,000 languages die out, Google is attempting to save it. Google launched the Endangered Languages Project yesterday with support from the Alliance for Linguistic Diversity. Through the collaborations of scholars, activists, and natives worldwide, Google is hoping that human efforts will help retain languages such as the Koro and Arogonese for future generations. The Navajo languages, spoken by various Native American tribes, are reported to only be spoken by 120,000 people in the U.S. A number that’s even closer to extinction is the Aragonese language, which is spoken by only about 10,000 people near the French border of Spain.

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VR-Zone.com | Tech News for the Geeks! VR-Zone | Stuff for the Geeks is a bi-weekly publication covering the latest gadgets and stuff for the geeks.

OpenGL 3.0 ES due out as early as this summer or fall Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/opengl-3.0-es-due-out-as-early-asthis-summer-or-fall/16464.html June 28th, 2012

If you game on your mobile devices, then you may notice that mobile gaming technology has come a long way since the days of Game Boy. However, many of the mobile devices that people are currently playing video games on are still powered by OpenGL ES 2.0 (mobile version of OpenGL 2.0 that emphasizes minimization of battery consumption). OpenGL ES 2.0 is about five years old, so an upgrade is in order. OpenGL ES 3.0, based on Open GL 3.2+ and part of OpenGL 4.x, is due to appear on mobile devices as early as this summer or fall.

If you game on your mobile devices, then you may notice that mobile gaming technology has come a long way since the days of Game Boy. However, many of the mobile devices that people are currently playing video games on are still powered by OpenGL ES 2.0 (mobile version of OpenGL 2.0 that emphasizes minimization of battery consumption). OpenGL ES 2.0 is about five years old, so an upgrade is in order. OpenGL ES 3.0, based on Open GL 3.2+ and part of OpenGL 4.x, is due to appear on mobile devices as early as this summer or fall.

game qualities that could match current consoles to an extent.

Skydivers help show off Google Glass camera Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/skydivers-help-show-off-googleglass-camera/16463.html June 28th, 2012

Sergey Brin, a figure of envy among nerds, geeks, normal people, and well, quite frankly the whole world is envious of his wealth, recently put some of his company’s money into a doing something that may not merit any investment at all.

Sergey Brin, a figure of envy among nerds, geeks, normal people, and well, quite frankly the whole world is envious of his wealth, recently put some of his company’s money into a doing something that may not merit any investment at all. During Google’s I/O event, Brin broadcasted live feeds of skydivers free falling while wearing Google Glasses. However, the Wi-Fi signals on the glasses were too weak so Google had to use antennas to amplify the signal to make the live feed possible.

The bad news is that some (if not a lot) of mobile devices that are currently on the market may not support OpenGL ES 3.0. However, devices that will feature the Mali T604 and Adreno 320 will most likely support it.

Well? And then what? After the live feed, Google graciously announced that developers can pre-order the Google Glass for $1,500 smackers. Buying a Wi-Fi eye glass with mounted camera for $1,500 is hardly a justifiable investment.

AMD, NVDIA, and Intel will most likely support OpenGL ES 3.0 sooner since they are the main players on desktop platforms, but chip makers that don’t play a huge role on desktops may see a slower transition.

Google’s promo video of Project Glass revealed some scifi-esque augmented reality features, but if the consumer version of the Glass (supposed launch is in 2014) is nothing more than a glorified Wi-Fi camera eye glass then Google may just have spent years working on, well, a head mounted camera.

Mobile video games are quite impressive graphically considering how outdated OpenGL 2.0 ES is, and with the adoption of OpenGL 3.0 ES in the future we may see mobile

That’s not to say that Google won’t achieve full augmented reality integration with their Project glass, but hiring 1

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stuntmen to jump out of an aircraft just to prove that Google Glass is capable of recording videos and broadcasting it is a rather questionable use of resources. Okay, Google has a lot of money to blow, but the point is people want to see some hints of the augmented reality from the promo video—not what a person sees when he is falling at terminal velocity. Here’s a reminder of what Google has promised us.

HTC One X gets ported Jelly Bean Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/htc-one-x-gets-ported-jellybean/16462.html June 28th, 2012

The Google Galaxy Nexus is the first device to receive Android 4.1 Jelly bean, but that doesn’t mean developers haven’t already begun porting the Nexus ROM to other devices. Consider the HTC One X as one of the first few lucky targets.

Published by: VR-Zone June 28th, 2012

Samsung’s next Galaxy Note is said to boast a 5.5’’ Super AMOLED screen, and if it gets any bigger people will have a hard time grasping onto the phone while taking a call (but I suppose that's what Bluetooth is for). Samsung’s next Galaxy Note is said to boast a 5.5’’ Super AMOLED screen, and if it gets any bigger people will have a hard time grasping onto the phone while taking a call (but I suppose that's what Bluetooth is for). Sources have told GSM Arena that Samsung is nearing the end of working on a Galaxy Note successor, and aside from the hefty screen real estate it will also have an appearance similar to that of the Galaxy S III. An Exynos 5250 may be the processor of choice along with 1.5 GB RAM for some intensive multitasking. People may also be able to get their hands on the device sooner than expected. The previous rumored release date was around October, but since the iPhone 5 is also coming out in October, Samsung has decided it would be wiser to snatch away Apple’s potential customers by making the Note II available before the iPhone 5.

Amazon to release new Kindle in two sizes Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/amazon-to-release-new-kindle-intwo-sizes/16459.html June 28th, 2012

The Google Galaxy Nexus is the first device to receive Android 4.1 Jelly bean, but that doesn’t mean developers haven’t already begun porting the Nexus ROM to other devices. Consider the HTC One X as one of the first few lucky targets. XDA developers have been working rapidly to create a useable build for the HTC One X, and although there are issues that need to be worked out, the build is useable. The devs state that there are problems with the Wi-Fi, Audio, camera, and more unknown issues.

We reported earlier that Amazon is working on a new Amazon Kindle Fire, and more leaks and rumors are steadily trickling in. Latest news regarding the new Kindle involves specs such as quad core processors, metal casings, and multiple tablet sizes.

You can’t really complain about the known or unknown issues regarding the port as the HTC One X has a totally different chipset compared to the Galaxy Nexus.

Samsung Galaxy Note II ups the ante with 5.5'' screen Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/samsung-galaxy-note-ii-ups-theante-with-5.5--screen/16461.html

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We reported earlier that Amazon is working on a new Amazon Kindle Fire, and more leaks and rumors are steadily trickling in. Latest news regarding the new Kindle involves specs such as quad core processors, metal casings, and multiple tablet sizes. Google will release the Nexus 7 in July, and it’s aimed at shooting budget tablets like the Kindle Fire straight in the heart. Amazon, however, is also prepping for battle as they are rumored to also release a quad core powered 7’’ tablet of their own. Additionally, Amazon is also rumored to have slimmmed down the tablet to the thickness that of the previous gen iPad. How about making their tablet appeal to every economic classes? Sources have gotten glimpses of the tablet says that Amazon is getting rid of the “cheap” plastic look of the previous Kindle in favor of a more high end metal casing. Amazon is going to face off with Google in the 7’’ arena, and why not get into the 10’’ ring at the same time? The 7’’ Kindle is currently the popular scavenger in the tablet kingdom. However, Amazon will also have a 10’’ "Hollywood" slate for the enthusiasts and stars. Sources that have actually handled the two Kindle tablets note that the 10’’ will have a front facing camera, and both will have a micro-USB port. There is an extra port on both slates which they assume may be an HDMI-out. Amazon is responding to Google’s declaration of 7’’ war, but at the same time Amazon will begin to assert itself in the 10’’ battle. A tablet battle on two fronts, I wonder if Amazon will have done enough strategizing to not go down quickly.

VESA releases MyDP standard for mobile devices Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/vesa-releases-mydp-standard-formobile-devices/16457.html June 28th, 2012

In a recent press release, the Video Electronics Standards Association (VESA) announced the release of the Mobility DisplayPort (MyDP) Standard. This is extension of DisplayPort will enable people to connect their mobile devices to displays and view their contents in full 1080p and/ or 3D.

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In a recent press release, the Video Electronics Standards Association (VESA) announced the release of the Mobility DisplayPort (MyDP) Standard. This is extension of the DisplayPort will enable people to connect their mobile devices to displays and view their contents in full 1080p and/ or 3D. VESA wants OEMs to adopt this new standard as it makes it very convenient for people to fully utilize their mobile devices on a daily basis. Many modern smartphones and other mobile devices are powered by extremely efficient and powerful processors that can put high quality media in the palm of people’s hands; hence, it’s a no brainer that a smartphone has the potential to be utilized as a medium for high quality entertainment. MyDP leverages a simple micro-USB cable that can connect to a TV/monitor via a DisplayPort or HDMI port. Once connected, people can view their contents at full HD, in 24bit color, and at 60Hz. Enabling connection to DVI and VGA displays is also possible because a MyDP adaptor and active converters will be available. The MyDP standard has a 1Mbps sideband channel to provide bandwidth for support of multi-touch, keyboard, mouse, and remote control of an external display. Oh, since the micro-USB port is being used for connectivity to a display anyway, why not just charge the mobile device at the same time? One hundred and eighty companies have already backed the MyDP standard, and VESA anticipates that consumers will begin seeing the new standard in ultrabooks, tablets, and smartphones as soon as the fourth quarter of 2012. VESA Enables Mobile Devices to Share Full HD Video and 3D Content on Any Display With Release of MyDP Standard New Mobility DisplayPort (MyDP) Standard Delivers Industry's Highest Mobile-to-Display Resolution through Existing Data Connectors NEWARK, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The Video Electronics Standards Association (VESA®) today announced the release of the Mobility DisplayPort™ (MyDP) Standard. MyDP is an extension of the DisplayPort connectivity standard that enables mobile devices to share high-definition video, audio, and 3D content with the broad universe of larger external displays through common, widely adopted connectors. Offering the industry's highest mobile-to-display image resolution, MyDP allows consumers to experience their mobile content in full, uncompressed 1080p (HDTV). "Today's mobile devices with powerful processors and mass storage capacities have become the new hub of media content," said Soumendra Mohanty, senior director of marketing for Analogix. "However, consumers wish to experience their mobile content in a more diverse manner, beyond what a four-inch screen can offer. MyDP gives the industry a standard interface to break down screen size limitations, and Analogix is ready today with its compatible SlimPort products." With the MyDP standard, high-quality audio, video, and 3D content can be shared from a mobile device to a larger external DisplayPort or HDMI 3

June 28th, 2012

equipped display, including a PC monitor, digital signage display or HDTV, using the micro-USB connector found on the majority of smartphones and tablets. By leveraging a simple passive cable, consumers can instantly experience their content at 1080P full HD resolution, 24-bit color, and 60Hz. Consumers can also access the millions of legacy DVI and VGA displays, projectors and TVs through the use of MyDP adaptors and active converters. The MyDP interface also includes a robust 1Mbps sideband channel that provides enough bandwidth to support accessory functions including multitouch, keyboard, mouse, and remote control of the external display. Furthermore, MyDP enables charging of the mobile device battery, through the MyDP cable, from the power provided by the DisplayPort-enabled display, while content is enjoyed. "MyDP is a win-win for consumers and technology manufacturers," said Ganesh Tekkatte, senior product marketing manager at STMicroelectronics. "MyDP is simple and flexible allowing content to be shared with today's displays through common connectors that are widely adopted, and will support the advanced media and connectivity standards through the foreseeable future." Backed by VESA's nearly 180 member companies, MyDP adoption is expected in next-generation tablets, ultrabooks, and smartphones, with the first products scheduled to ship in the fourth quarter of 2012. MyDP's simple plug-and-play functionality with any external display benefits the entire mobile ecosystem by enabling better experiences and the delivery of new features and services. Consumers will benefit from the entertainment and productivity value of viewing and editing mobile content on a large screen; hardware manufacturers can evolve their systems to have more robust business and gaming features; software developers can create more mobile-centric office and 3D entertainment apps; and carriers can provide a variety of new value-added services to leverage data plans and sell accessories like cables, docking stations, and more. "Consumers expect their mobile devices to interface with other CE products. However, in order to get this functionality, consumers are often forced to either purchase products from a single vendor, or leverage interfaces that have limited industry backing and adoption," said Bill Lempesis, executive director of VESA. "MyDP is an open standard that is backed by a large ecosystem of the leading technology companies. This gives consumers the ability to choose the devices they want, and share whatever content wherever they go." For more information about MyDP, please visit http://www.displayport.org. For more information about VESA, please visit http:// www.vesa.org/ or connect with us on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

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PowerColor Outs Single-Slot, Low-Profile Radeon HD 7750 Graphics Card Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/powercolor-outs-single-slot-lowprofile-radeon-hd-7750-graphics-card/16455.html June 28th, 2012

Although it was Sapphire, which charmed visitors of its Computex booth with its single-slot, low-profile Radeon HD 7750 graphics card, PowerColor beat it to the punch by taking such a design to its logical conclusion, the market. PowerColor's HD 7750 LP is fully loaded, despite its puny size. Although it was Sapphire, which charmed visitors of its Computex booth with its single-slot, low-profile Radeon HD 7750 graphics card, PowerColor beat it to the punch by taking such a design to its logical conclusion, the market. PowerColor's HD 7750 LP is fully loaded, despite its puny size.

PowerColor designed a single-slot, low-profile cooling solution that consists of a copper plate, a dense aluminum channel array, and a 40-50 mm lateral flow fan that guides air through the channels, where heat dissipation takes place. The card relies on the PCI-Express slot for power, and uses a 2+1 phase VRM to condition it. High-grade CPLmade chokes, LFPAK MOSFETs, and conductive polymer capacitors, are used. Together, the VRM and cooler have the chops to keep the 1.5 billion transistor GPU ticking.

Despite limited VRM and cooling resources, the clock speeds of the PowerColor HD 7750 LP aren't lowered. The card sticks to AMD's older reference clock speeds of 800 MHz GPU, with 1125 MHz (4.50 GHz effective) memory (the newer revision ups core clock speed to 900 MHz for the HD 7750). It packs 1 GB of GDDR5 memory across a 128-bit wide memory interface. The Radeon HD 7750 is based on the 4

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28 nm "Cape Verde" silicon, and is configured to have 512 Graphics CoreNext stream processors, and support for the entire AMD Southern Islands feature-set, including DirectX 11.1, HD3D, AMD APP, and next-generation Eyefinity. Display outputs of the PowerColor HD 7750 LP include one each of dual-link DVI-D, standard-size HDMI 1.4a (with 7.1 channel HD audio), and D-Sub (VGA). The D-Sub connector is detachable. PowerColor includes a low-profile bracket, which can be used to install the card in slim form-factor (SFF) chassis. PowerColor did not reveal the pricing of the HD 7750 LP, though we expect it to command a tiny premium over common HD 7750 cards in the market. Single-slot + lowprofile could end up being a major selling point.

Halo 4 offers two campaigns for the price of one Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/halo-4-offers-two-campaigns-forthe-price-of-one/16452.html June 28th, 2012

Halo fans are you ready for some free DLCs? Well, at least that’s what a slide from Microsoft’s ExpertZone states. Halo fans are you ready for some free DLCs? Well, at least that’s what a slide from Microsoft’s ExpertZone states. In Halo 4, there will be a mode called “Spartan Ops” which are additional missions that can be downloaded periodically. Every week for 10 weeks, Spartan Ops will offer 5 new missions which players can play in single or co-op mode. Ten DLCs will be offered, and if you did the math, that’s 50 extra missions. The price you ask? Well, it’s free!

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Spartan Ops is 100% free! How many games give you free DLC for 10 weeks? So what does this mean to you and your customer? Spartan Ops increase game value and overall enjoyment of Halo 4 with up to 12 hours of incremental gameplay in either single player or coop multiplayer mode. It’s like getting two campaigns with one game!” 343 took over Bungie’s duties in concocting the next Halo, and surely they, along with Microsoft, know how to touch a gamer’s heart—free stuff! More slides here.

Coolermaster QuickFire Pro Mechanical Gaming Keyboard Review Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/coolermaster-quickfire-promechanical-gaming-keyboard-review/16451.html June 28th, 2012

CoolerMaster has certainly been moving very quickly in the gaming peripherals market; no more than 2 months ago we had a look on the high-end Trigger Mechanical Gaming keyboard and the company already released a new gaming mechanical keyboard, the QuickFire Pro. Although the QuickFire Pro does not have the number of features or the versatility of the Trigger, it is a very interesting product nevertheless. Read on for a detailed review on its quality, features and performance. CoolerMaster has certainly been moving very quickly in the gaming peripherals market; no more than 2 months ago we had a look on the high-end Trigger Mechanical Gaming keyboard and the company already released a new gaming mechanical keyboard, the QuickFire Pro. Although the QuickFire Pro does not have the number of features or the versatility of the Trigger, it is a very interesting product nevertheless. Read on for a detailed review on its quality, features and performance. Manufacturer’s features and specifications • Mechanical CHERRY MX switches • USB 2.0 full speed • NKRO in USB mode • Multimedia shortcuts • 1000Hz/1ms response time

“Spartan Ops is a great way to extend your single or co-op multiplayer experience. Each week, the Spartan Ops team will deliver 5 new missions for you to complete. These missions are introduced with a high-quality cinematic video so that you are wellbriefed before you embark on your mission. Oh, and unlike most other games out there, season 1 of

• Windows key disabled in game mode • Partial Red LED backlight • Removable braided USB cable with cable routing

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Model

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SGK-4010-GKCC1 (CHERRY Black) * SGK-4010-GKCL1 (CHERRY Blue) * SGK-4010-GKCM1 (CHERRY Brown) *

Key Switch N key Rollover Polling Rate Backlighting Windows Key Disable Media Keys Interface Cable Length Dimension

Weight Warranty UPC Code

SGK-4010-GKCR1 (CHERRY Red) * CHERRY Black / Blue/ Brown/ Red * 6/Full N Key 1000HZ/1ms Partial Keys Yes Yes USB 2.0 Full Speed 1.8 m 454(L) x 155(W) x 31(H) mm 17.9(L) x 6.1 (W) x 1.2(H) inch 1300 g / 2.86 lb 2 years 884102015687: SGK-4010GKCC1 (Black) 884102015670: SGK-4010GKCL1 (Blue) 884102015694: SGK-4010GKCM1 (Brown)

Notice

A New Zealand judge has publicly stated that the FBI’s seizure of Megaupload data for court uses in the U.S. is “invalid.” According to High Court judge Justice Helen Winkelmann, the warrants provided by the FBI “did not adequately describe the offenses to which they related.” She insists that the FBI used general warrants to seize Kim Dotcom’s assets, and that the warrants themselves fell short of outlining Dotcom’s allegations. New Zealand authorities are heeding judge Winkelmann’s verdict and claim that they are in the process of determining “what further action might be required.” Dotcom is currently on bail, and the majority of his $175 million worth of assets are either seized or frozen.

Shimi robot DJ mixing it up with human beings Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/shimi-robot-dj-mixing-it-up-withhuman-beings/16449.html June 28th, 2012

Researchers at Georgia Tech’s Center for Music Technology has developed a robotic DJ, dubbed elegantly as “Shimi”, that may give future human DJs a run for their money.

884102015700: SGK-4010GKCR1 (Red) * availability depends on regions

New Zealand judge rules FBI's seizure of Megaupload's data "invalid" Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/new-zealand-judge-rules-fbi-sseizure-of-megaupload-s-data-invalid-/16450.html June 28th, 2012

A New Zealand judge has publicly stated that the FBI’s seizure of Megaupload data for court uses in the U.S. is “invalid.”

Researchers at Georgia Tech’s Center for Music Technology has developed a robotic DJ, dubbed elegantly as “Shimi”, that may give future human DJs a run for their money. According to Shimi’s creator, Professor Gil Weinberg, the robotic DJ is, more or less, a sophisticated “docking station” that adheres to the requests of people that have Android devices. Shimi utilizes a phone’s camera and face-detection features to detect which music selection a person may want to hear. Another cool method Shimi uses to detect a song choice is by “listening” to a rhythm—such as a person’s tapping—and

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then browses the phone's library to play the music that most closely relates to the preferred rhythm. People involved in the Shimi project hope that the robotic DJ will one day become a household item that “enhance” people’s life. They also claim that in the future there will be apps that will allow users to command Shimi through gestures such as waving a hand or shaking of the head. Weinberg is also making an attempt at commercializing Shimi through partnerships between Georgia Tech and entrepreneurs. Shimi will take part in the Google’s I/O festivities, and its creator hope that it will make a big enough impression to convince app developers to begin making apps to expand Shimi’s horizons.

ADATA Releases XPG SX910 SSD Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/adata-releases-xpg-sx910ssd/16448.html June 28th, 2012

ADATA unveiled its newest performance-segment consumer SSD, the XPG SX910. The new product appears to be a slightly improved version of the XPG SX900 the company launched back in February. ADATA unveiled its newest performance-segment consumer SSD, the XPG SX910. The new product appears to be a slightly improved version of the XPG SX900 the company launched back in February, 2012.

The ADATA XPG SX910 is driven by LSI-SandForce SF-2281 processor. It comes in three capacities, 128 GB, 256 GB, and 512 GB. Unlike with the XPG SX900 series, a 64 GB model is excluded. The drives also take advantage of a reworked over-provisioning scheme by LSI, which results in higher unformatted capacity. The drives are built in the 2.5-inch / 9.5 mm-thick form-factor, with SATA 6 Gb/s interface. The 128 GB variant sells for US $189.99 (S $242), the 256 GB variant for US $379.99 (S $485), and the 512 GB for US $749.99 (S $957). The three will gradully phase out older XPG SX900 models from the market.

Samsung's own LTE baseband chipset shows up in Korean Galaxy S3 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/samsung-s-own-lte-basebandchipset-shows-up-in-korean-galaxy-s3/16442.html June 28th, 2012

Earlier this week Samsung released the another variant of the Galaxy S3 for the Korean market. A teardown of a retail unit yielded an interesting find - Samsung's own 4G LTE baseband chipset.

According to the company, the NAND flash chips used in the XPG SX910 are put through an improved screening process, picking the best performing ones out for building these drives. In industry jargon, the process is known as binning. It's likely that this change enhanced the product warranty. The XPG SX910 comes with a longer product warranty of 5 years, compared to 3 years of the XPG SX900. Despite improved NAND flash chips, the rated sequential transfer rates advertised for the XPG SX910 haven't changed from those of the XPG SX900. The drive reads at speeds of up to 550 MB/s, and writes at speeds of up to 530 MB/s. Its maximum 4K random read/write performance is rated at 50,000 and 85,000 IOPS, respectively. Perhaps the improved flash chips result in improved "performance yields" (the performance you actually end up with).

Previously, many publications have reported on the many variants of the Galaxy S3, with different hardware components and even form factors to cater to the requirements of different regional markets. For example, USA buyers will get the SKU with a dual-core Qualcomm S4, instead of the much vaunted quad-core Exynos 4 SoC which does not have native LTE support. South Korean electronics giant Samsung has released yet another permutation of the Galaxy S3 for the South Korean market earlier this week and the new model comes with Samsung's own quad-core ARM SoC and LTE baseband chip. Developed in collaboration with AP, the 'CMC221S' LTE baseband will allow network subscribers of local telcos SK Telecom and KT to enjoy high speed data connectivity. The chip supports 2G, GSM, 3G, WCDMA, 4G, and LTE, which technically makes it marketable to almost every country in the world. Another Galaxy S3 SKU for LG U+ gets an additional chip for the 2G CDMA2000 that is also serviced by other companies like Verizon Wireless.

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Published by: VR-Zone

First is subnetting. Many people have asked me why their IP address looks different between their home networks and the address the rest of the internet sees. The reason for this is what’s known as “subnetting.” In essence, a DHCP server, or “Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol”, assigns an IP address from a very limited range on a private network so that communications between computers on the network can occur, while all outbound traffic is sent through the router with a single IP address. This allows people to have dozens of devices connected to their home network without the ISP needing to assign dozens of IP addresses to the home; instead, they can assign a single IP address, greatly reducing the number of addresses they need to hand out. Not much is known about the specifications of the new silicon, but it is assumed that the chip is manufactured with 40nm process technology. Samsung was previously successful in developing a LTE chip called Kalmia in 2009, but did not support 2G or 3G networks and was primarily deployed as a LTE data modem in tablet PCs and smartphones. Jong-Kyun Shin, the CEO of IT and IM of Samsung Electronics, said that the company plans to have more designs with its own baseband chip and that the Korean Galaxy S3 LTE demostrates "Korea has the fastest LTE" and "we are already considering moving on to VoLTE." Looks like Qualcomm has a new competitor to contend with...

The Internet Protocol: Past, Present, and Future - Part 3 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/the-internet-protocol-past-presentand-future--part-3/16443.html June 28th, 2012

Subnets are defined as networks within a specific range of IP addresses, usually denoted with CIDR notation. The most common subnet is the class-C subnet, with a subnet mask of 255.255.255.0. This means that the first three bytes of the address are unchanging, with the last byte the differentiating part of the address; it can also be written 192.168.1.0/24, meaning that 24 bits are used only for the network prefix, with the host being identified in the final 8 bits. This subnet is the most common, because it is used in nearly every private home network. Subnetting, however, only slows the need for addresses, allowing a single address to be defined for an entire network. This opens up far more addresses, though certain ranges are off-limits and servers still need a unique public IP address, bringing us to the next stop-gap, reclaiming addresses. Many addresses that were assigned to organizations in the early days of IPv4 have still been unused, but cannot be assigned to anything else because they’re held in reserve for that organization. Others were assigned and used, but the server assigned to it has gone offline, leaving the address to sit unused but assigned. ISPs and regional IP assignment organizations have been culling these unused and abandoned addresses and returning them to the regional pools of addresses, ready to be reassigned as needed. However, even this solution only kicks the proverbial can down the road. IPv6 – The Solution

In the final part in our series on the Internet Protocol, we discuss measures being taken to mitigate the exhaustion of IPv4 addresses, as well as IPv6. Previously, we talked about the birth and history of the Internet Protocol, the communication protocol that allows the internet as we know it to exist, and the creation of and problems with the current version of the protocol, IPv4. In this final article, I’m going to talk about some attempts to mitigate the exhaustion of IPv4 addresses, as well as IPv6, recently activated and trying to gain traction as the solution to the problem.

The ultimate solution to the address exhaustion problem is the new version of the Internet Protocol, IPv6. IPv6 is an expanded address space that allows for far more addresses than IPv4, effectively eliminating the exhaustion problem, barring some massive uptick in networked devices (entirely possible in the next few decades). Unlike IPv4, which uses a 32-bit address space, IPv6 uses a 128-bit address space, allowing for 2128 addresses, or roughly 34 followed by 37 zeroes. To put this into perspective, this is enough to give every person on the planet, roughly 7 billion people, their own personal set of addresses the size of the current IPv4 address space.

Slowing the Death of IPv4

Let that sink in for a minute.

Rather than roll out new infrastructure to support the new protocol version, many institutions and ISPs are instead looking to ways to mitigate the exhaustion of IPv4 addresses. Whether through subnetting or the reassignment of unused addresses, they’re looking to swell the remaining pool of available addresses in order to slow the death of IPv4. While this doesn’t directly deal with the root of the problem, let’s discuss these solutions.

In essence, IPv6 eliminates the need for more address space. There is no way with modern technology that the amount of addresses allowed by IPv6 will be exhausted. It is quite possible that, given advances in technology and miniaturization, one day IPv6 will be used up, but until then it more than meets our requirements.

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Microsoft Anti-Trust Fine Upheld by EU General Court Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/microsoft-anti-trust-fine-upheld-byeu-general-court/16446.html June 28th, 2012

Published by: VR-Zone

Although 37 devices may not seem like a big number, it is because of the effort of the official CM9 devs that people outside of the official team can work on porting CM other devices. The CM team points out that the RC1 release will be the first of many more RC1’s, and support for additional devices are on their to-do list. Check out the official post here for more details.

The EU General Court, their second highest court, upheld a fine placed on Microsoft by anti-trust regulators in the lower courts. The second highest court in Europe has upheld an antitrust ruling against Microsoft, saying that it “essentially upholds the Commission’s decision.” However, the court did reduce the record-setting fine from 899 million euros to 860 million euros. The fine was imposed four years ago because Microsoft had not provided certain information to its competitors as it was ordered to do in 2004. Anti-trust regulators in the European Union initially fined Microsoft 497 million euros for abusing its dominant position in the market to drive away competition. They ordered Microsoft to make its server software code available to competitors so that their products could work alongside each other. They were also ordered to make specific changes to their operating systems, such as removing Windows Media Player and Internet Explorer as built-in defaults for listening to music and browsing the internet. In 2008, an additional fine was given for failing to comply with the 2004 order. At a hearing in May of 2011, Microsoft’s lawyers argued that the fine was excessive and completely undeserved. A statement from the EU General Court in Luxembourg, however, states that the latest decision “rejects all the arguments put forward by Microsoft in support of annulment.”

I-O Data Unveils New Line of USB 3.0 Portable HDDs with Two-Tone Bodies Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/i-o-data-unveils-new-line-ofusb-3.0-portable-hdds-with-two-tone-bodies/16440.html June 28th, 2012

I-O Data unveiled its newest line of portable hard drives, under the HDPC-UT series. The drives are designed with two-tone bodies, in which its two sides have different, somewhat-contrasting colors; and USB 3.0 SuperSpeed interface. Japanese company I-O Data unveiled the HDPC-UT line of portable hard drives featuring two-tone bodies, in which the two major sides have dissimilar and somewhat contrasting colors. The drive is initially offered in two color schemes, red + brown and white + gray (silky).

CyanogenMod 9-RC1 now available Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/cyanogenmod-9-rc1-nowavailable/16445.html June 28th, 2012

Before taking off for the Google I/O in San Francisco, the CyanogenMod team announced the release of the CyanogenMod 9.0-RC1. Before taking off for the Google I/O in San Francisco, the CyanogenMod team announced the release of the CyanogenMod 9.0-RC1. It has been 225 days since Google unleashed Android ICS for developers to work on, and within that time the people working on CM9 has managed to whip out official support for 37 devices. The team claims that CM 9.0 RC1 is a stable build which they have put countless hours into producing.

The drives are available in two capacities, 500 GB and 1 TB. Equipped with USB 3.0 SuperSpeed interface, the drives rely on the interface (a single cable) for both power and connectivity with the host. It is backwards-compatible with USB 2.0, and works with most TVs and other digital devices that support USB mass-storage device standard. The drives are pre-formatted and include Windows installers for the company's Mach Copy software, which works to speed up file-transfers with the drive. The 500 GB white + silky gray (HDPC-UT500W) and red + brown (HDPC-UT500R) models are priced at 10,500 Japanese Yen (about S $168); while the 1 TB white + silky gray (HDPC-UT1.0W) and red + brown (HDPC-UT1.0R) models go for 15,015 Yen (S $240).

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Published by: VR-Zone

BioWare hints at more Mass Effect 3 DLC in future Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/bioware-hints-at-more-masseffect-3-dlc-in-future/16441.html June 28th, 2012

BioWare is planning more downloadable content updates for Mass Effect 3, it has been revealed, despite just releasing an extended ending after extensive controversy over the original. BioWare is planning more downloadable content updates for Mass Effect 3, it has been revealed, despite just releasing an extended ending after extensive controversy over the original. Mike Gamble, producer of the game, let slip that BioWare is not intending to hang up its hat, tweeting: “Would now be a good time to talk about how we're doing more DLC in the future?” “That was a trick question,” he added in another tweet. “We'll save the future DLC for future chats. Don't worry though...there's much more.”

Amazon Kindle Fire 2 expected in July Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/amazon-kindle-fire-2-expected-injuly/16439.html June 28th, 2012

Amazon's second-generation Kindle Fire tablet will launch on 31 July, according to person close to the company. CNET cited “a credible source” for the close date, suggesting that Amazon is seeking to up the competition against Apple's iPad range less than a year after the release of the first Kindle Fire, which sold well due to its dirt cheap price-tag of $199. The anonymous source said that the Kindle Fire 2 would come with a camera and physical volume buttons, but other details appear to be largely under wraps.

Details about the new DLC are being kept secret for now, but Gamble's comments suggest we will see more than one update in the future. You would be forgiven for thinking that the studio would want nothing more to do with the game after the disastrous situation over the disappointing ending, which forced it to release yesterday's Extended Cut free of charge. The company may already have had plans for future updates, however, or the return to the world to provide more explanation and options for the ending may have gotten the developers' creative juices flowing again, inspiring them to come up with new content.

Another report by sometimes right, often wrong DigiTimes suggested that Amazon would launch a similarly-priced 7inch Kindle tablet with a higher resolution of 1,280x800, but the release date suggested is the third quarter. DigiTimes also speculated that Amazon would reduce the price of the existing Kindle Fire to just $149, making it even more affordable, but that would mean bigger losses on the hardware, given the Kindle Fire's estimated production cost of $201.70. Amazon is clearly profiting elsewhere, however, 10

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such as from advertising, its Kindle store, and Amazon Prime subscriptions, and if the bill of materials cost is lower than many believe then it could afford to slash prices even further. The alternative is that Amazon could completely replace the old Kindle Fire with the new product and not worry about selling the first-generation device at a lower price. However, tough competition from rivals, including Barnes & Noble, Samsung, Lenovo and Google's upcoming tablet, may force Amazon to push prices even lower to remain ahead of the pack.

Judge bans sale of Samsung Galaxy Tab in US Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/judge-bans-sale-of-samsung-galaxytab-in-us/16438.html June 28th, 2012

A judge has banned the sale of Samsung's Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet in the United States, marking the latest victory for Apple in its ongoing dispute with rival tablet manufacturers. A judge has banned the sale of Samsung's Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet in the United States, marking the latest victory for Apple in its ongoing dispute with rival tablet manufacturers. US District Judge Lucy Koh ruled that Samsung's tablet should be taken off the market, after an appeal by Apple forced her to recognise that Samsung “does not have a right to compete unfairly, by flooding the market with infringing products.” However, Apple is required to post a $2.6 million bond as a protection against damages if the ban is found to have been made in error, suggesting that Koh is still torn on the issue, having previously denied Apple's request for an injunction before the appeal.

Published by: VR-Zone

Samsung is expected to make an appeal of its own, saying it will take all necessary legal steps. It also believes the ruling will not significantly affect its business, with several other tablets and products available in the US market, including the Galaxy Tab in smaller sizes. The Korean electronics giant claims that Apple's complaint over a single design patent that focuses on just one aspect of its tablet's design means that “design innovation and progress in the industry could be restricted.” In other words, Apple is attempting to control the market and cripple competition through use of what Samsung calls “a generic design patent.” Apple has been widely criticised for orchestrating a patent war with Samsung and other Android supporters over the past two years, resulting in a bitter tug-of-war in the courts throughout the world, the cost of which is but a fraction of the lucrative profits to be made by the victor in the tablet arena.

Simple misreporting battery fix for Galaxy S III i9300 Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/simple-misreporting-battery-fix-forgalaxy-s-iii-i9300/16437.html June 28th, 2012

Samsung Galaxy S3 i9300 owners who have been experiencing abnormal battery usage during standby will be happy to know that the battery is actually not draining as reported by the system. Samsung Galaxy S3 i9300 owners who have been experiencing abnormal battery usage during standby will be happy to know that the battery is actually not draining as reported by the system. Owners of the i9300 may have noticed that their phone is reporting battery drainage between 50% and 70% during standby, and this is not true because XDA developers has found out that Samsung made a mistake in the power_profile.xml. Samsung, perhaps, mistakenly set the cell standby value to 34mA in the power_profile.xml. A simple fix to this is simply to reset the value to 3.4mA—which, XDA devs claim is a more “reasonable” value. A mod has been created by XDA devs to fix this problem, but it is important to note that the mod is intended to fix the wrong report, and not fix battery drainage from other user installed apps and/or profiles. “This mod will fix the wrong reporting of “cell stand by “usage to some extent. If your mobile has actual drain due to signal issues or some other issues do not blame me or any other for not fixing this.”

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Check out the original thread here.

Apple accuses HTC of misleading U.S. customs officials Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/apple-accuses-htc-of-misleadingu.s.-customs-officials/16436.html June 28th, 2012

Published by: VR-Zone June 28th, 2012

RIM’s upcoming BlackBerry N series will not include the iconic BlackBerry trackpad that we all associate many of RIM’s smartphone to.

After Apple won their patent battle with HTC last month, they are hot on HTC’s tail once again even after HTC has gotten the green light from U.S. Customs officials. Only days after clearing customs, Apple is suggesting to the ITC that HTC may have lied to U.S Customs officials in order to have the ban lifted on their HTC One X device. RIM’s upcoming BlackBerry N series will not include the iconic BlackBerry trackpad that we all associate many of RIM’s smartphone to. According to n4bb.com, RIM developers will eliminate the trackpad from the N series by augmenting the QWERTY keyboard to favor a more touch favored interface. Eliminating the trackpad will not only make the N series devices look sleeker, but it also adds additional real estate to the touch screen.

After Apple won their patent battle with HTC last month, they are hot on HTC’s tail once again even after HTC has gotten the green light from U.S. Customs officials. Only days after clearing customs, Apple is suggesting to the ITC that HTC may have lied to U.S Customs officials in order to have the ban lifted on their HTC One X device. The patent infringement which Apple wanted to be corrected entails a “system and method for performing an action on a structure in computer-generated data.” It only took HTC a couple of days to remove those features to receive the go ahead to import their phone. HTC confirmed with the ITC that it had removed all the features that infringed upon Apple’s patent, but the Gmail client could not be tampered with since it was a close sourced feature from Google. Therefore, HTC is claiming innocence based on the notion that Google’s closed source app has nothing to do with HTC. Apple, however, argues that HTC is responsible for any patent infringements regardless of whether or not they have the source code to an application.

BlackBerry N series will not have trackpad Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/blackberry-n-series-will-not-havetrackpad/16435.html

The days of running your fingers on the trackpad to navigate the menus and contents of a BlackBerry may come to an end soon, but the physical keypad will remain a key component for many who prefer it. Now, will RIM ever succeed in creating a full touch screen device that can compete with Android and iOS? That’s totally different discussion, but for now it’s “goodbye trackpad” for the N series.

iPhone is slowly but steadily gaining grounds on Android Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/iphone-is-slowly-but-steadilygaining-grounds-on-android/16434.html June 28th, 2012

Google is currently enjoying a nice lead in the smartphone market as the Android platform currently powers over half the world’s smartphone. However, that number is expected to decrease in the future as Apple is pushing to increase the presence iPhones by enabling more carriers on their device. Google is currently enjoying a nice lead in the smartphone market as the Android platform currently powers over half the world’s smartphone. However, that number is expected to decrease in the future as Apple is pushing to increase the presence iPhones by enabling more carriers on their device.

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The IDC projects that Android based smartphone will hit a wall at around 62% market share, and from there it will experience a decline. Android tablet market share has already started to trail off as it’s currently holding on to about 36% compared to last year’s 38%. According to the IDC, Apple’s iPad will enjoy a large cushion as it will own about 62% of the tablet market share. In addition to possibly adding major carriers such as TMobile to the mix of iPhone enabled carriers, prepaid services from Leap Wireless, Cricket, and Virgin Mobile has announced that they will add the iPhone to their lineups of phones. Apple is slowly, but steadily gaining grounds on Google, and perhaps Android’s rapid growth is to blame for their predicted downfall. Many apps on the Android platform are not as refined as their iOS counterpart. Furthering Android’s troubles is the problem of fragmentation, which causes incompatibility of apps among the vast selection of Android devices. Google is scheduled to reveal their latest Android version soon, Jelly Bean, but even a newer and smoother platform may not help Google’s cause—evident through ICS failure to become OS of choice for Android devices. Only about 7% of all Android devices currently run on ICS, and unless Google unite their OEMs and demand Jelly Bean enabled devices, we won’t see Jelly Bean make a huge impact on the Android scene. Although Android currently leads the pack in the amount of Android powered smartphones, it currently has too many internal issues which may cause it to lose out to the iPhone, and maybe even Windows Phone in the future.

Published by: VR-Zone

The Super Wi-Fi supporters may meet some competition in the future from cellular carriers who want to build upon their stash of FCC approved bands. Competition for the spectrums is one thing, but creating a huge wireless network also requires huge investments to create the backhauls for the networks. Each of the proposed channels (previously TV channels) can theoretically provide about 22Mbps, and the underlying intent is to use as many channels as possible to provide fast broadband service. There are no confirmation as to how much the partnership is willing to invest in the project, but for the project to take off it requires more than just an initial investment. People will have to be willing to pay for the service which will most likely include additional fees for the construction and maintenance of the backhauls. A significant drawback of a huge wireless network is the quality of a connection is also dependent on the geographic nature of a region. Water, natural barriers, and man-made elements will all play big roles in how much investment is needed in the backhauls. Bringing about broadband service via abandoned spectrums is quite ambitious, but anything can be accomplished with the right amount of money.

Apple expands iTunes Store in Asian region Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/apple-expands-itunes-store-in-asianregion/16431.html June 28th, 2012

Super Wi-Fi for rural America via abandoned TV spectrums Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/super-wi-fi-for-rural-america-viaabandoned-tv-spectrums/16432.html June 28th, 2012

A partnership between Google, Microsoft, and more than 500 colleges and universities may provide broadband access to rural America via Super Wi-Fi. The partnership is seeking to create wireless networks that will provide ~10Mbps channels to areas with radii of about 10km. A partnership between Google, Microsoft, and more than 500 colleges and universities may provide broadband access to rural America via Super Wi-Fi. The partnership is seeking to create wireless networks that will provide ~10Mbps channels to areas with radii of about 10km. Super Wi-Fi will utilize spectrums that were once used by broadcasters before the adoption digital signals. The FCC will mostly likely auction off the abandoned spectrums in the near future, and if the Super Wi-Fi project is successful then the project will cement itself as one of the main bidder for the open waves.

Apple recently announced that they are expanding the iTunes Store in the Asian region to include Hong Kong, Singapore, Taiwan, Brunei, Cambodia, Laos, Macau, Malaysia, Philippines, Thailand, Sri Lanka, and Vietnam. Apple recently announced that they are expanding the iTunes Store in the Asian region to include Hong Kong, Singapore, Taiwan, Brunei, Cambodia, Laos, Macau, Malaysia, Philippines, Thailand, Sri Lanka, and Vietnam. In addition to the millions of international music artists in the iTunes Store, Apple will add on talents from the Asian region to include, but not limited to, Chay Chou, Girls Generation, and Andy Lau. Apple claims that their DRM-free music format is top notch, and that customers will receive audio files that are “virtually indistinguishable from the original recordings.” Music won’t be the only thing available to the expanded Asian market. Apple will continue to distribute various shows and movies from various studios such as Sony, Fox, and Paramount. Owners of devices such as the iPad, iPhone, and iPod in the Asian region will now also have access to the Apple Store’s 650,000 apps. Customers will also have free access to the iTunes cloud which stores their purchased media files for backup or additional synching. Users who wish to purchase iTunes 13

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Match to add additional features such as storing an entire music library for access at any time may also do so. iTunes 10.6.3 will be available for download on Windows or Mac for free and a valid credit card with a billing address is required for purchasing contents on iTunes. Press Release: HONG KONG—June 27, 2012—Apple® today announced the launch of the iTunes Store® in Hong Kong, Singapore, Taiwan and nine additional countries in Asia featuring an incredible selection of local and international music from all the major labels and thousands of independent labels. The iTunes Store features local artists including Jay Chou, Girls Generation and Andy Lau, international artists including ADELE, The Beatles and Jason Mraz, and world-renowned classical musicians including Lang Lang, Yo Yo Ma and Yuja Wang. Customers can choose from over 20 million songs available to purchase and download on the iTunes Store. Apple is bringing the iTunes Store to music fans in Brunei, Cambodia, Laos, Macau, Malaysia, Philippines, Thailand, Sri Lanka and Vietnam. Customers can also rent or purchase movies from the iTunes Store, with many available in stunning HD, from major studios including 20th Century Fox, Paramount Pictures, Sony Pictures Home Entertainment, The Walt Disney Studios and Warner Bros. Pictures. The iTunes Store joins the revolutionary App Store™ which offers more than 650,000 apps to consumers in 155 countries. The iTunes Store is the best way for iPhone®, iPad®, iPod®, Mac® and PC users to legally discover, purchase and download music online. All music on the iTunes Store comes in iTunes Plus®, Apple’s DRM-free format with high-quality 256 kbps AAC encoding for audio virtually indistinguishable from the original recordings. iTunes® in the Cloud lets you download your previously purchased iTunes music to all your iOS devices at no additional cost, and new music purchases can be downloaded automatically to all your devices. In addition, music not purchased from the iTunes Store can gain the same benefits by using iTunes Match?, a new service that stores your entire music library in iCloud® for access at any time, from any iOS device. iTunes Match is available for purchase in the new countries added today.

Published by: VR-Zone

professional software. Apple leads the digital music revolution with its iPods and iTunes online store. Apple has reinvented the mobile phone with its revolutionary iPhone and App Store, and is defining the future of mobile media and computing devices with iPad. Press Contacts: Christine Monaghan Apple cmonaghan@apple.com +1 (408) 974-8850 Fiona Martin Apple fmartin@apple.com +61 02 8987 8230

LSI Introduces MegaRAID Controllers with PCI Express 3.0 Interface Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/lsi-introduces-megaraid-controllerswith-pci-express-3.0-interface/16420.html June 28th, 2012

In order to answer the "choking" experience its old controllers had while paired with more than couple of Solid State Drives, LSI launched 10 new RAID controller cards and HBA's (High Bandwidth Architecture, for integration on motherboards), all utilizing the PCI Express 3.0 interface. The popularization of Solid State Storage, i.e. Solid State Drives (SSDs) caught a lot of traditional players off-guard. Even the highest bandwidth RAID solutions would end up choking after more than 4-5 SSD were connected, as it was simply too much bandwidth and more importantly - the number of I/O operations per second. Couple of months ago, we tested the MegaRAID 9260-8i and 9265-8i and found that both controllers starting experiencing issues after fifth drive would be connected, and that combining an SSD and seven Cheetah 15k7 drives made for the best experience (SSD Caching), or using two SSDs in RAID0 and six 15,000 rpm drives in RAID5.

Pricing & Availability iTunes 10.6.3 for Mac and Windows includes the iTunes Store and is available as a free download from apple.com/asia/itunes. iTunes Store purchases require a valid credit card with a billing address in country. Apple designs Macs, the best personal computers in the world, along with OS X, iLife, iWork and 14

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Published by: VR-Zone

A recent study done by scholars at Boston University revealed that “patent trolls” cost individuals, organizations, and companies billions of dollars per year.

In order to enable all the bandwidth required by the fastadopting SSD technology, LSI Corporation revealed no less than 10 MegaRAID SAS+SATA controllers and Host Bus Adapters (HBA) utilizing the PCI Express 3.0. There are seven PCIe cards with 4 or 8 ports, and three HBA chip controllers for motherboard implementation. Naturally, things are not just about the bandwidth and I/ Ops, given that LSI is continuing to support enterprise-grade RAID data protection, SSD caching through CacheCade Pro 2.0 application, CacheVault data protection, packing everything in a new tagline - "intelligent performance". In order to be able to offer the features required, LSI is using the dual-core PowerPC processor operating at 800MHz, with 1GB DDR3 cache memory. The list of available models and pricing is as follows: LSI MegaRAID SAS+SATA Controllers • MegaRAID SAS 9270-8i single

$780

• MegaRAID SAS 9271-4i single

$540

• MegaRAID SAS 9271-8i single

$780

• MegaRAID SAS 9271-8iCC kit

$1085

• MegaRAID SAS 9286-8e single

$995

• MegaRAID SAS 9286CV-8e single

$1255

• MegaRAID SAS 9286CV-8eCC kit

$1505

LSI SAS+SATA HBAs: • SAS 9207-4i4e single

$335

• SAS 9207-8i single

$305

• SAS 9207-8e single

$510

"Patent trolls" cost many $29 billion last year Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/-patent-trolls-cost-many-29-billionlast-year/16430.html June 28th, 2012

A recent study done by scholars at Boston University revealed that “patent trolls” cost individuals, organizations, and companies billions of dollars per year. According to the study, $29 billion were put aside in 2011 by companies, among others, to obtain rights to patented ideas. Adding on to the immense cost mentioned above, there are “indirect” costs such as delays products, and loss of market share during the legal battles. “This [$29 billion] figure does not include indirect costs to the defendants' businesses such as diversion of resources, delays in new products, and loss of market share,” people involved in the study wrote. Industry bodies that buy patents with the main goal of licensing them are one of the main culprits in the causing the huge expense. Also known as “non-practicing entities,” (NPEs) these firms don’t make the products related to the patents they own, and since they own many patents related to the work of other companies, individuals, and academic institutions they are also an obstacle for people who seek to make their innovative ideas a reality. The BBC reported that 2,150 companies had to stage 5,842 legal battles against NPEs last year. Over half of the companies that had to put out the money to defend their patent rights last year were companies that earned less than $100 million per year. The direct costs of legal fees and indirect costs such as delayed products lead to less investment in research and development. The authors of the study added that NPEs are causing society more harm than good because they cause stagnation in innovation by putting too much emphasis on protecting their “intellectual properties”.

U.S. military to launch social site like reddit Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/u.s.-military-to-launch-social-sitelike-reddit/16429.html

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The U.S. military is launching a reddit knockoff called Eureka, but don’t expect anonymity as a point of focus when it comes to posting on Eureka. According to various sources, Eureka’s users will be mainly of the U.S. military, and its content will be highly moderated. Instead of up voting or down voting user posted contents, Eureka will have restricted “ideas” which users can vote on.

The U.S. military is launching a reddit knockoff called Eureka, but don’t expect anonymity as a point of focus when it comes to posting on Eureka. According to various sources, Eureka’s users will be mainly of the U.S. military, and its content will be highly moderated. Instead of up voting or down voting user posted contents, Eureka will have restricted “ideas” which users can vote on. Therefore, Eureka may be more of a user generated manuals or suggestion page for the U.S. military rather than an open platform for raising awareness for news and ideas. On top of highly moderated contents, Eureka will have firewalls which mean that if you’re not a military personnel or affiliated with the military then chances are you won’t be able to access it. It’s quite clear that Eureka won’t be available to the general public, and people familiar with the matter states that the site will focus on expressing ideas that solve “problems that plague the military and hamper efficiency.” Many private sector employers are seeking to eliminate social networking at work to promote efficiency, but the military, meanwhile, is seeking to use it to boost efficiency. The idea behind it is counter intuitive, but not quite irrational. Reddit manager Erik Martin says that it “seems like a perfect fit” for the military to be utilizing the reddit format since both the social networking site and the military emphasize conciseness. Reddit uses acronyms such as TIL (Today I Learned) and IAMA (Ask Me Anything) on their site, and Martin predicts that the military may implement such communication methods in their Eureka site.

Published by: VR-Zone June 28th, 2012

Twenty-four suspected hackers has been either probed or arrested by U.S. law enforcements. The FBI has tracked down various computer criminals that are responsible for over $205 million in credit/debit card fraud.

Twenty-four suspected hackers has been either probed or arrested by U.S. law enforcements. The FBI has tracked down various computer criminals that are responsible for over $205 million in credit/debit card fraud. Eleven of the suspected cyber criminals are from the United States, and the thirteen others are from Europe and Asia. The suspects are all men ranging from eighteen to twentyfive years of age. Many of these men were involved in a credit card forum which distributed credit/debit card numbers for fraudulent purposes. Two men in New York have already been arrested, and are scheduled to appear in court next Tuesday. Suspects in the huge crackdown may face up to 40 years in prison for charges ranging from conspiracy to wiring of fraudulent charges. One of the higher profile suspect, Mir Islam-also known as “JoshTheGod”, has been charged with releasing 50,000 stolen credit card numbers. He is also reported to have admitted to helping UgNazi hack Twitter last week. The credit card forum which the men operated in was, aptly called “Carder Profit”, created in June 2010, but it was shut down in May after the FBI crack down.

Mojang offers beta Scrolls at a discount Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/mojang-offers-beta-scrolls-at-adiscount/16421.html June 28th, 2012

FBI crack down on "Carder Profit" credit/debit card fraud Source: http://vr-zone.com/articles/fbi-crack-down-on-carder-profitcreditdebit-card-fraud/16428.html

How do you follow up a highly successful title like Minecraft? You create a new card game that’s supposed to take 16

June 28th, 2012

“collectible card games to a whole new level.” The Mojang crew has been working on a game called Scrolls, and if you’re really interested to see if it has any Minecraft-esque flavors to it you can buy it during beta for a discounted price.

Published by: VR-Zone

Interested? Check out the official website for more info.

How do you follow up a highly successful title like Minecraft? You create a new card game that’s supposed to take “collectible card games to a whole new level.” The Mojang crew has been working on a game called Scrolls, and if you’re really interested to see if it has any Minecraft-esque flavors to it you can buy it during beta for a discounted price.

Think of Scrolls as Yu-Gi-Oh meets Magic: The gathering. You play the game by defeating your opponent’s “idols” with support summoning such as creatures, spells, enchantments, structures and siege weapons. How you win a card battle not only depends on your skills but also the cards in your deck, thus, building a strong deck will take some.

Furthermore, the rarer card the stronger or more useful it is to your scrolls or card deck. The Mojang team is planning on moving to beta, and players can go ahead and purchase the game even though it’s still in beta. Players who are interested in buying the beta release will be buying a “half finished product at a reduced price.” Mojang claims that selling their product at a reduced price during beta will help them “shape the game into a successful product with [user given] feedback.”

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