Meta doesn’t just need another hardware building block — it needs games.
Amazon has released a new Kindle app for macOS, reports Good e-Reader. The new app has been redesigned to look more like iOS and now supports new features like a reading ruler, more fonts, a full-screen view, and page-turn animations.
You had me at page-turn animations, Amazon.
My favorite testament to the open-endedness of Baldur’s Gate 3 so far: this short, lightly spoiler-y guide to beating one of the game’s hardest bosses using the status effect of a minor side quest NPC. (If this hasn’t been patched yet... it likely will be soon.)
ArsTechnica summarized research that documents a vulnerability in both integrated and discrete GPUs which lets a website pull pixels from another site through the use of iframes and the exploitation of side channels created by the GPU when it compresses data. The vulnerability hinges on accessing that side channel to reproduce what’s on screen, pixel by pixel.
Fortunately, the researchers don’t believe this is a true threat — and neither do Nvidia, Qualcomm, or Google, per statements published at Ars. However, according to Ars, some browsers, including Chrome and Edge, are technically vulnerable. Firefox and Safari are not.
The Action Button is the most significant new iPhone feature in years
Leaked Pixel 8 Pro deal shows Google will throw in a Pixel Watch 2 for free
Tinder Select is a $499 per month plan for Tinder’s 1 percent
YouTube is axing its ad-free Premium Lite subscription plan
You can now prompt ChatGPT with pictures and voice commands
“Starting today, inactive moderators won’t be able to perform certain actions, including adding or removing moderators, or changing the community’s settings (type, description, NSFW status, discovery settings),” Reddit says. These seem like good changes!
Uber is listing more and more taxi drivers in its app, most recently in Los Angeles. How did the two sides come together? In short, money.
Google certainly doesn’t seem to think so. In his questioning of Apple’s Eddy Cue this afternoon, Google’s John Schmidtlein took Cue on a journey through Safari history, and Cue said that Safari’s integration of a search box and URL bar was part of what made the browser worked. And that only worked because Google was there — or so the argument goes.
Also, Cue dropped a classic Apple Reality Distortion Field line: “One of the benefits that Google gets from Apple is that we’re telling the world Google is the best search engine, because that’s what customers expect us to pick.”
Tomorrow, Meta will explain why you should pay $500 for a Quest 3 at Meta Connect... and I’m starting to wonder if Lego will be part of the pitch. See the blocks in Zuck’s image below? They’ve got trademarked Lego logos on top!
Soon after Meta’s Instagram-based Twitter competitor launched, some of the millions of people who activated Threads noticed a small issue. Once you create an account on Threads, the only way to delete it is to delete your Instagram account, too.
However, Meta chief privacy officer Michel Protti said during the TechCrunch Disrupt event that Meta will launch individual deletion for Threads accounts by December. Another situation it’s working on handling is fediverse support for situations like “what happens when a Threads post goes to another server and is then deleted by the author.”
In a new report, Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo says Apple will ship 400,000 to 600,000 of its mixed-reality headsets in 2024, an estimate that’s lower than the expected 1 million shipments.
That prediction tracks with a July report from The Financial Times, which similarly states that Apple is preparing to make less than 400,000 Vision Pro headsets next year.
A little button that you can program to do virtually anything you want unlocks a lot of possibilities for the computer that’s with you the most often.
Bloomberg reports that the CIA’s chatbot will help it “find the needles in the needle field” that is the growing collection of surveillance data it buys from tech companies. Bloomberg didn’t learn what model drives the bot, which the CIA will share with other, unspecified intelligence agencies soon.
Bloomberg quotes Randy Nixon, who directs the CIA’s Open-Source Enterprise division, as saying the agency’s data stores “grow and grow with no limitations other than how much things cost.” Agents will ask the bot questions to isolate info from all that data.
I’m sure we have nothing to worry about.
Hideki Kamiya, who directed Resident Evil 2, Devil May Cry, Viewtiful Joe, Ōkami, Bayonetta, The Wonderful 101 and Scalebound (before it got canceled), announced yesterday that he’s leaving PlatinumGames. He co-founded the studio in 2006.
He’s not retiring, though. “As long as I have everyone’s support, I’ll keep making games, so I’ll do my best not to disappoint,” reads part of an auto-translated thread at X.
The Withings Body Scan Connected Health Station is an extra as hell scale. It’s got a handle for 6-lead EKGs and can purportedly take segmented body fat scans. As in, differentiate how much fat you carry in your arms versus legs, etc. Withings also claims the scale’s EDA sensors can measure your foot sweat to gauge your nerve health. Wild.
In any case, Withings first announced this baby nearly two years ago at CES 2022 — and this is a good example of how long FDA clearance can take as this $399.95 scale will be available at the end of September 2023.
The AI assistant revolution is more than 50 years in the making
Today on The Vergecast: AI is taking over the gadget world.
Today on The Vergecast: iPhone reviews, Watch reviews, and how widgets really work.
After 10 years covering startups, former TechCrunch editor-in-chief Matthew Panzarino tells us what’s next
We tried to make a hit song with only AI tools — and it got messy
The disc-by-mail service, which is shutting down this Friday, owed its success to lots of behind-the-scenes innovation.
In a galaxy far, far, away, jazz doesn’t exist. Instead, when you want to really blow on that horn you’re jizzing or jatzing. As AVClub recently noted, both words have technically been used to describe the musical stylings of the Star Wars universe over the years, with jizz gaining in popularity for extremely obvious reasons.
But in a recent short story collection based around Return of the Jedi characters, Max Rebo, the blue alien front man for the band that plays at Jabba the Hutt’s palace thinks back to other times he’s performed “jatz standards”. That means jatz is the official Disney-approved name for the music.
Wookiepedia, meanwhile, continues to embrace jizz.
Apple’s agreement with Google doesn’t allow for that, Apple’s Eddy Cue said in court. And Cue said he doesn’t want to do it anyway: “we try to get people up and running as fast as possible.” But the DOJ is showing exhibits about all the “Ask App Not To Track” screens you see, and the Appearance settings in setup, and more. Their question is: for something as important as search, shouldn’t you let people choose for themselves?
Cue, again, says no. “We pick the best one and let users easily change it,” is his approach. And he says that’s Apple doing right by customers.
It’s early, sure, but for this, I’m ready to skip Techtober and go straight to the holiday season (via Polygon). Amazon’s preorders for $16.32 ship October 23rd, and it will also be available from Hallmark for $22.99 starting October 14th.
For fellow believers in blast processing, there’s a Sega Genesis charm from 2022’s set that you can get now on Amazon, in addition to Nintendo-themed 2023 options like Mario Cat, Samus, Link, and Donkey Kong, all for around or under $20.
Note: If you buy something from these links, we might get affiliate revenue.
We finally got into open court in US v. Google! For the last 45 minutes or so we’ve been listening to Cue talk about the deal he and Sundar Pichai negotiated in 2016 to keep Google as the default search engine on Apple devices. So far, Cue’s stance is simple: Google is the best search engine, so Apple picked it. He says Apple never seriously thought about ditching Google for another provider, or building its own search engine.
The DOJ appears to be walking Cue toward to a privacy question: if you’re so worried about user privacy, shouldn’t you tell people how much Google tracks them and let them opt out? But before we could get there, we took a break. Back at it in a few.
One of the biggest tech antitrust trials since the US took on Microsoft is underway.
MSI has announced a partnership with Capcom in honor of the Monster Hunter franchise’s 20th anniversary. MSI will release limited-edition Monster Hunter-themed products that will include, per the announcement, “laptops, monitors, graphics cards, motherboards, cases, liquid coolers, and controllers”.
Don’t even try, folks — those Monster Hunter liquid coolers are all mine.
The Verge’s editor-in-chief, Nilay Patel, is cohosting, and naturally we’ll be there to cover the big interviews.
The event starts later today, so tune in then for live coverage. The first interviews start a bit after 6PM ET.
Xbox has announced it’s bringing the popular Shift series of Xbox controllers to Xbox Design Labs. Now, when you make your own controller through Design Labs you can choose from one of the three Shift colors — Aqua, Lunar, and Stellar — and a fourth, all new Shift color, Cosmic. Adding one of the Shift colors to a Design Lab controller will cost an additional $10