Microsoft reveals the secrets of HoloLens’ specs, including a 24-core processor

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At the Hot Chips conference this week, Microsoft has shed some light on the hitherto secretive specifications of its augmented reality HoloLens. Now that anyone with $3,000 spare is able to buy a headset, there’s never been more interest in what’s actually inside the case powering the AR goodness. The holographic processing unit (HPU) at the heart of HoloLens is a seriously multi-cored beast. The Register reports that it is a “TSMC-fabricated 28nm coprocessor that has 24 Tensilica DSP cores”. Of course, there’s much more to the device than just this chip. The HPU is capable of processing a trillion… …Continue reading on BetaNews

Android 7.0 Nougat starts to roll out to Nexus devices

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There have been numerous beta versions of Android 7.0 Nougat, and now the official rollout is underway. This is not a full-scale rollout just yet — it’s limited to the Nexus 6P, 5X, 6, 9, and Nexus Player, as well as the Pixel C and General Mobile 4G. You’ll notice that the Nexus 5 is missing from the list, but the remainder of the handsets are in line for an OTA update anytime over the coming weeks starting today. If you’re impatient, you can always download the factory images and flash your device manually, but whichever route you go down,… …Continue reading on BetaNews

Privacy-flaunting, Apple-only social app Lifestage is Facebook’s desperate attempt to stay relevant to teens

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Facebook has become so ubiquitous that even your mum is using it. This is just one of the many reasons the social networking giant has lost any vestiges of coolness, but the company is keen to try to claw some back. The latest attempt to get down with the kids is a new social app called Lifestage. Aimed at ‘high schoolers’ the app is available for iPhone and iPad and for those with a profile it “makes it easy and fun to share a visual profile of who you are with your school network”. It looks and sounds godawful, and… …Continue reading on BetaNews

Samsung is planning an Apple-style refurbished phone program

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If you want to get your hands on cheaper Apple products, you can opt for the secondhand market on eBay, or you could go for an official refurbished device from the company itself. Not wanting to miss out on a trick, Samsung looks set to launch its own refurbished smartphone program. Citing “a person with direct knowledge of the matter”, Reuters says the program could launch as early as next year. With Samsung hardware selling for something of a premium — particularly flagships like the Galaxy Note7 — consumers are as keen to seek out a saving as Samsung is… …Continue reading on BetaNews

Mass surveillance by UK government is acceptable but there are privacy concerns, says review

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A review into mass surveillance and bulk data collection by the UK government has concluded that there is a strong case for allowing such activity. The privacy-invading activities of MI5, MI6 and GCHQ were the subject of a report by independent reviewer David Anderson QC, and the findings have been welcome by prime minister Theresa May. The report is likely to concern privacy advocates, particularly when Anderson goes on to say that he agrees ‘in principle’ that there could be cases for hacking phones and computers. It gives heavyweight backing to the controversial Investigatory Powers bill (snooper’s charter). Anderson’s report… …Continue reading on BetaNews

Changes to Microsoft Family make it possible to block Chrome and Firefox in Windows 10 Anniversary Update

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Windows 10 Anniversary Update introduced a number of changes to the operating system, and Microsoft has started to email users about changes to Microsoft family settings. As the name implies, this is about keeping things family-safe, family-friendly, but one of the changes is unlikely to go down well with rivals. While new Microsoft family options make it easier to place limits on what children are able to do with a computer, a controversial option forces the use of Internet Explorer or Microsoft Edge. Microsoft has made it possible to block the use of Chrome, Firefox and other rival browsers. The… …Continue reading on BetaNews

Slightly confusingly, Apple stores are now just called Apple

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Apple’s latest branding move messes with syntax and estalished convention as it changes the way it refers to its physical stores. While Apple Store, Fifth Avenue made perfect sense to just about anyone with common sense, Apple has now decided that Apple Fifth Avenue is better. The change to retail labelling is a little, well, odd frankly, but it’s sure to gain Apple some more of the attention it so craves. After all, Apple World Trade Center sounds rather more grand than Apple Store, World Trade Center doesn’t it? MacRumors reports that Apple employees recently received emails informing them of… …Continue reading on BetaNews

Chrome apps to disappear from Windows, Mac and Linux while Chrome OS gains new launcher icon

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Google has come to the realization that hardly anyone is using Chrome apps. As such, the company plans to phase out support for the apps on Windows, Mac and Linux over the next couple of years. While admitting that packaged apps are used by just 1 percent of users of the three platforms, Google says that the decision comes after a drive to integrate the feature of apps into web standards. Chrome apps will live on in Chrome OS “for the foreseeable future”, but a wind-down timetable has been set out for everyone else. Nothing is changing immediately. But come… …Continue reading on BetaNews

Webcam stopped working? You could blame Windows 10 Anniversary Update (plus, a workaround!)

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Windows 10 Anniversary Update has been gradually rolling out to computers around the world and like any big software update it has caused its fair share of problems. The latest issue to rear its head sees Anniversary Update killing webcams. The problem comes about as the update prevents USB webcams from using MJPEG or H264 encoded streams, instead requiring the use of YUY2 encoding. Microsoft is aware of the issue and is working on a fix that should be released in September, but all is not lost in the meantime. Microsoft chose to change the encoding support to improve performance… …Continue reading on BetaNews

China wants to monitor and control all live streams in real time

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China’s overarching control of the internet, technology, and its people in general is nothing new. The Great Firewall of China is famous for placing huge restrictions on what citizens are able to access online, and recently the government banned the use of social media as a news source. The latest target for the Chinese government is the increasingly popular activity of live streaming. The proposal includes a requirement for all live streamed content to be monitored around the clock. The Cyberspace Administration of China is looking to wipe out what it sees as inappropriate online content, and live streaming is… …Continue reading on BetaNews

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