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Apple and Paramount discuss streaming bundle to fight subscription fatigue.

The Wall Street Journal reports that the two companies have considered bundling Apple TV Plus and Paramount Plus together for a cheaper price than paying for both streaming services separately.

Details are slim, but If it comes to fruition the combined service would join similar entertainment bundles that aim to combat rising customer defections, like Verizon’s $10 bundle for Netflix and Max.

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Xbox says it’s still looking to launch its own mobile game store.

It’s “something we are actively working on today not only alone, but talking to other partners who’d also like to see more choice for how they can monetize on the phone,’’ Xbox CEO Phil Spencer said, per BNN Bloomberg. These plans have been public for a while, but are even more interesting now Microsoft owns Activision Blizzard (which has already explored doing something similar).

Interview: Sam Altman on being fired and rehired by OpenAI

“I totally get why people want an answer right now. But I also think it’s totally unreasonable to expect it.”

Atari 50 is getting a big update.

Now that developer Digital Eclipse is under the Atari umbrella, the studio is about to drop the first major update for its brilliant retro collection / playable documentary Atari 50. It launches on December 5th, and will add 12 new (old) Atari 2600 games. Unfortunately, it’s not clear yet what games will be coming, but it sounds like this is just the start of many updates to come.

Apple paints the town (Product) Red.

As part of its ongoing partnership with (Red) — a brand dedicated to fighting HIV/AIDS — Apple has released an all-red version of the Apple Watch Series 9, alongside some exclusive watch faces to mark World AIDS Day.

The watch joins existing (Product) Red variants for the iPhone 14, iPhone 14 Plus, iPhone 13, and iPhone SE, but there’s no sign of the new iPhone 15 series joining the lineup.

The Apple Watch Series 9 in (Product) Red.
Marking World AIDS day, a collection of “specially customized watch faces” will also be available in red.
Image: Apple
Botched Cybertruck demo immortalized in window sticker.

Tesla’s calling it the OMFG Decal and it can be yours for $55, plus $60,990 for a place to stick it.

As Tesla describes it: “Inspired by the Cybertruck unveil event, this limited-edition window decal celebrates the moment that made us go ‘OMFG’.”
As Tesla describes it: “Inspired by the Cybertruck unveil event, this limited-edition window decal celebrates the moment that made us go ‘OMFG’.”
However many it is… it’s so floppy!

53 seconds into this Cybertruck walkaround video, Mat from Carwow picks up the wiper. And…it’s so floppy! Looks like one blade but still inconclusive.

Thanks to Tyler for the tip — The Verge is America’s leader Cybertruck wiper news source, and it’s all thanks to readers like you.

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Steam is going to drop support for macOS 10.13 and 10.14 in February.

From Valve’s support document:

Unfortunately, macOS 10.14 was the last version to support running 32-bit games on macOS. Apple chose to drop support for 32-bit applications in macOS 10.15 (released 2019), and since many developers have not updated their games to support 64-bit executables, some games will effectively stop functioning on macOS. The Steam store will stop considering games that offer only 32-bit macOS binaries to be Mac compatible at the end of 2023. 98%+ of Steam customers on Mac are already running macOS 10.15 or newer. This means 32-bit only games and applications no longer run on your current operating system.

Steam’s support for macOS 10.13 and 10.14 will end on February 15th, 2024.

Tesla can make your Cybertruck black — for $6,500.

The black and white wraps are available as one of many Cybertruck accessories that you can now shop for on Tesla’s website. The company delivered its first Cybertrucks earlier on Thursday.

An image of the black Cybertruck.
The black Cybertruck.
Image: Tesla
The bird is freed (and the book is available for pre-order).

Verge alum Zoë Schiffer just announced her new book, Extremely Hardcore: Inside Elon Musk’s Twitter, which will expand on her reporting from Platformer, New York Magazine, and of course, this very website. Here’s what Bloomberg’s Matt Levine has to say about it:

Zoë Schiffer has written the definitive book on perhaps the weirdest business story of our time. A fast-paced and riveting account of a hilarious and tragic mess.

The book comes out next February. Pre-order it!

The cover of Zoë Schiffer’s book, Extremely Hardcore
A ROG Ally update is adding gyroscope controls and a lot more.

It started as an April Fool’s tease, but the very real handheld gaming PC is now six months old. Along with gyro controls, a new Armoury Crate update is adding a new Feedback Hub, the ability to turn CPU Boost off, new AMD Advanced Graphics Options, and direct sharing of images and video to Discord and TikTok.

Windows Central highlights this Asus video tracking everything added since launch (we revisited our review over the summer), or you can read the changelog here.

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iOS 17.1.2 and iPadOS 17.1.2 are out with some important security fixes.

The updates fix two WebKit vulnerabilities that “may have been exploited against versions of iOS before iOS 16.7.1,” according to an Apple support page. macOS Sonoma 14.1.2 is out, too, with fixes for the same vulnerabilities.

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A US judge has blocked Montana’s TikTok ban.

US District Judge Donald W. Molloy issued a preliminary injunction (pdf) blocking the ban on Thursday, as reported by Reuters. The ban had been set to take effect on January 1st. TikTok sued Montana shortly after Governor Greg Gianforte signed SB 419 in May.

The Verge’s 2023 holiday gift guide

A selection of great tech and non-tech gifts aimed at the tinkerer, the creative, and the kid in all of us.

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Amazon producer Joel Silver was reportedly fired for resisting calls to use AI during the strike.

It still isn’t entirely clear how the advent of AI filmmaking tech is going to disrupt the entertainment industry.

But it feels pretty significant that Amazon reportedly fired longtime producer Joel Silver not of his alleged harassment towards female executives, but as retaliation in response to his refused to “Use artificial intelligence to finish a movie during the strike.

Tesla took a mulligan on the Cybertruck window.

The company’s lead designer Franz von Holzhausen notoriously smashed the Cybertruck’s window with a metal ball bearing in a botched demonstration of the truck’s armor plated glass back in 2019. Today, he got a chance at redemption. But his throws looked a little weak. And is that a baseball I see??

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The first season of the Halo show is available to watch for free on YouTube.

You can watch all nine episodes from this playlist, as shared by Wario64. If you want to read more about the show before jumping in, check out Ash Parrish’s review of the season.

The Paramount Plus show has been renewed for a second season, but we still don’t know when it’s set to come out.

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Elon Musk and Andrew Ross Sorkin’s AI copyright conversation was truly terrible, folks.

Sure, it’s not as eye-catching as Musk telling Disney to go fuck itself. But Musk and The New York Times’ Sorkin had a painfully ill-informed conversation about intellectual property and AI, starting with the factually wrong statement that AI companies claim they’re not training on copyrighted works. It’s been driving me up a wall, so kudos to Mike Masnick for laying out how silly it all was.

ChatGPT is winning the future — but what future is that?

OpenAI didn’t mean to kickstart a generational shift in the technology industry. But it did. Now all we have to decide is where to go from here.

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Well that’s awkward.

The latest Baldur’s Gate 3 patch has given me the chance to make my bear boyfriend Halsin very very uncomfortable.

Minthara, one of Act I’s goblin camp leaders, is a much desired companion. Problem is, you have to commit a lot of murder and risk Halsin leaving your group (y’know because of all the murder) to recruit her. While some players have found interesting ways to get around this, Patch 5 now seems to let you simply knock her out during her fight and recruit her later in Act II.

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There’s a proxy fight at Disney.

You might have thought Bob Iger returning to Disney would have smoothed things over with the board and investors, but activist investor Nelson Peltz is back baby.

Peltz and his firm, Trian Fund Management are looking for two seats on the board. When Iger was asked about it yesterday at New York Time’s Dealbook conference he demurred.

But today the company responded to the proxy fight accusing Peltz of collaborating with Ike Perlmutter (who owns most of the shares Peltz is relying on). Perlmutter was fired from the board this year after losing more and more of his once iron grip on the Marvel franchise. He once called women-led superhero films a “disaster” and attempted to scuttle both the hugely successful Black Panther and Captain Marvel films for exactly the reasons you think.

Threads is expanding keyword search to more languages.

Meta started letting users in English and Spanish-speaking countries search for keywords in September, but now it’s available to Threads users globally and in all languages.

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TikTok is committing €12 billion to data security in Europe.

The money will go towards Project Clover, TikTok’s initiative to house European user data on local servers to address concerns from regulators.

TikTok’s data center in Ireland is already up and running, but it’s already working on another in Norway, where it expects data migration to begin in late 2024. Once complete, TikTok says its Norway facility will be the “largest data centre in Europe.”

These ex-Apple employees are bringing AI to the desktop

After selling Workflow to Apple in 2017, the co-founders are back with a new startup that wants to reimagine how desktop computers work using generative AI.

Stop-motion sci-fi.

The new trailer for Harold Halibut — an upcoming adventure game from German studio Slow Bros — looks absolutely gorgeous. The handcrafted game has been in the works for around a decade, but it doesn’t look like we’ll have to wait too much longer to explore: it’s expected to launch in early 2024 on the PS5, PC, and Xbox Series X / S (it’ll also be on Xbox Game Pass).

“Characters in the world will now have a face.”

That’s one of the big features coming to Dwarf Fortress as part of its free “adventure mode” update, which launches next April. In addition to the new procedurally-generated character portraits, the mode will also introduce “rich conversations,” more detailed maps, and revamped combat.

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Google isn’t just introducing Messages updates today.

In a blog post, Google detailed the Messages improvements, some nice Wear OS and accessibility updates, and more. With Wear OS, for example, you’ll soon be able to set home or away statuses in Google Home, which could be handy if you forget to change your status when you leave the house.

The Verge
Epic v. Google day 14 starts with Google’s Paul Gennai.

He’s a VP of product management at Google who left Australia (and Australian telecom biz Telstra) to join the firm in 2008, he says.

In 2010, he joined the Android team as a product manager reporting to Jamie Rosenberg, whom we’ve already heard from in court. He worked on Android strategy — and was intimately involved in Play Store decisions, it seems.

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