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Why Microsoft desires TikTok

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The tech antitrust hearing used to be supreme, truly

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How Microsoft Flight Simulator returned to the skies

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NBCUniversal’s streaming service, Peacock, will cost subscribers anywhere from absolutely nothing to $10 a month, but Comcast is hoping a mix of exclusives and bonus content will convince people to pay. Comcast and NBCUniversal announced today that Peacock will be available in three tiers: a free option (Peacock Free) that comes with limited programming; an…

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There is concern that Yoko Taro might destroy Final Fantasy XIV. And given the Nier: Automata director’s track record of endings to his games requiring players to erase all of their saved data, you can understand why. It was during the reveal of the MMO’s third expansion, Shadowbringers, last February when it was announced that…

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Fortnite may no longer be the most buzzed-about video game in the world. But developer Epic Games this week announced a new, rather ingenious, strategy to help its battle royale hit remain relevant. The company is calling this new idea the Icon Series, a collection of virtual costumes (or skins, in gaming parlance) that go…

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Jeffrey Katzenberg insists that his new video-streaming service Quibi isn’t competing against Netflix, Disney+, HBO Max, Peacock, or any of the other streaming services that have launched or are launching soon. You’ve got it all wrong. You’re not even asking the right questions. “We don’t think we’re in the streaming wars,” Katzenberg, the former boss…

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This decade, babies took on a new life. Everyone wanted to be a baby, and particularly this year, babies dominated the meme cycle. We’re obsessed with babyfication — turning everything into a baby including ourselves and beloved characters. Unlike infantilization, babyfication suggests corporate strategy, foresight about how turning users or characters into babies will spur…

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As we start looking forward to 2020 — and your predictions are coming to this space tomorrow — a big subject on my mind is accountability. Tech platforms have evolved into quasi-states with only the most rudimentary of justice systems. If trolls brigade Twitter into suspending your account, or you’re removed from YouTube’s monetization program,…

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There are no collectibles in Half-Life. It’s incredible. That’s not how I would have praised the groundbreaking first-person shooter, which turns 20 years old today, when I first played it. At that point, I might have described how Half-Life infused sci-fi shooters with a sense of realism. It set an alien invasion in an Earthbound…

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On Saturday, the Observer published an article describing a rather incredible caper that took place in the United Kingdom. As part of an ongoing inquiry into fake news, Parliament seized a cache of documents obtained during legal discovery in a case mounted by an app developer against Facebook in an unrelated matter in the United…

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The new Disney movie Ralph Breaks the Internet has been the top film at the box office for a few weeks in a row, not a particular surprise in a holiday season where people are looking for films that will entertain kids without boring adults. The original 2012 Wreck-It Ralph was a revelation for Disney…

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When virtual reality company The Void released its first collaboration with ILMxLab, Star Wars: Secrets of the Empire, the mission was pretty straightforward. Star Wars fans want nothing more than to step inside the world of that franchise, so the experience, which lets participants play Rebel spies infiltrating an Imperial base, had to deliver something…

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In March, human-rights investigators from the United Nations found that Facebook had played a role in spreading hate speech in Myanmar, fueling ethnic violence that has spurred more than 650,000 Rohingya Muslims to flee Myanmar’s Rakhine state into neighboring Bangladesh. The report, which came amid growing concerns about the way that social networks can incite…

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Kaeo Milker (L) and Findlay Milker (R)Photo: Kaeo MilkerHow I WorkThe How I Work series asks heroes, experts, and flat-out productive people to share their shortcuts, workspaces, routines, and more. Have someone you want to see featured, or questions you think we should ask? [Email Nick](mailto:nick.douglas@lifehacker.com).  Kaeo Milker has enjoyed a long and eye-opening career at…

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When the horror flick Unfriended came out in 2015, it seemed more like a stunt than a legitimate movie. The entire movie took place on a computer screen, with audiences watching from a first-person point of view as a user navigated from Facebook to Spotify and back again, all while chatting on a group Skype…

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In 2001, a young graduate named John Hopson wrote a detailed article for the industry website Gamasutra on the topic of behavioural game design. Hopson, an amateur game-designer, decided to pair his hobby and his research, detailing in coolly clinical terms concepts that the industry had previously handled primarily through intuition and artistry. “Under what…

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Sunset Overdrive is a garish, over-the-top explosion of color and sound. Its punk rock sensibilities are evident at every turn. Even four years after launching in 2014 as an Xbox One exclusive, this is still one of the best games of its generation. The credit for that belongs entirely to Insomniac Games, the same studio…

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Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images Five years in, the show hits its stride It’s been two years, and Geoff Keighley, creator of The Game Awards, is still thinking about the Schick Hydrobot. In 2016, while the glitzy industry celebration was enjoying its third show, viewers were preoccupied with the night’s strangest guest: a marketing…

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Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge A more humane digital marketplace Leaf Corcoran would rather you didn’t compare Itch.io, his digital marketplace that currently houses around 120,000 games, to Steam, the leading video games distribution platform on PC. “We’re a tiny company, the kinds of games and service are definitely different,” Corcoran tells The…

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In the absence of a miniature Nintendo 64, Sony has decided to keep the new holiday tradition of tiny, retro throwback consoles alive with its PlayStation Classic. If you’re at all familiar with Nintendo’s “classic edition” line — which includes both the NES and SNES — you know just what to expect. The PlayStation Classic…

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Although we may be doing an increasing amount of shopping online, a vast majority of retail still occurs in the real world — and no event better emphasizes that fact than Black Friday, the annual holiday shopping extravaganza that consumes US retailers every Thanksgiving. Last year, Black Friday generated nearly $8 billion in sales, according…

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Westworld / HBO Minority Report strikes again Samsung’s foldable Infinity Flex smartphone is the stuff of science fiction. For decades, incredible visions of gadgets with screens that can bend, fold, or even roll up like newspapers have appeared in movies and TV shows. They’re a handy way to project how today’s smartphones and tablets might…

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Epic Games’ new digital game marketplace, announced earlier this week and surprise launched during the Game Awards yesterday evening, has raised a lot of eyebrows in the industry. With its favorable 88 / 12 percent revenue split and Epic CEO Tim Sweeney’s pledge to better support creators, many in the industry are wondering whether this…

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The recent boom in artificial intelligence has produced impressive results in a somewhat surprising realm: the world of image and video generation. The latest example comes from chip designer Nvidia, which today published research showing how AI-generated visuals can be combined with a traditional video game engine. The result is a hybrid graphics system that…

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“I gave my talk with [Voices of VR podcast host] Kent Bye, who is a really awesome guy,” she said. The two discussed a range of topics, but one conversation in particular resonated with Pinnick. “His perspective at the time was that we’re moving away from the information age to the experiential age with things…

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On Friday, President Trump tweeted “Sanctions Are Coming,” regarding moves he was planning to make against Iran.Saul Loeb/Getty ImagesThis week has been so long that it’s almost difficult to remember that it started with the horrific deaths of 11 people in a Pittsburgh synagogue, which prompted reports about the growth of anti-Semitism in the US,…

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“The Legend of Zelda” won multiple game of the year awards in 1998, but was it the best seller? “The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time”/Nintendo Starting from the humble days of “Pong” and “Space Invaders,” video games have grown into a multi-billion-dollar industry, with single games garnering hundreds of millions of sales. As the…

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Fortnite creator Epic Games is now facing a lawsuit from hip-hop artist 2 Milly, who claims the game developer ripped off his “Milly Rock” dance move by turning it into an in-game emote players can earn after spending real money, according to a report from Variety. The lawsuit was filed in California district court on…

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TikTok is inescapable right now, and it’s not just teens paying attention — it’s rocked the business world as well. Bytedance, the owner of the wildly popular short-form video app, is now valued at more than $75 billion following a new round of investment. This means Uber has unexpectedly lost its long-held title of the…

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Fallout 4 may use the same engine as Skyrim, but that engine has changed drastically over the years.Screenshot: Fallout 4This morning, news headlines and YouTube videos across the internet declared that Bethesda will not change engines for the upcoming games Starfield and The Elder Scrolls VI, setting off a wave of outrage that’s become oh-so-common…

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One of the latest fads to wash onto the shores of YouTube comes from TikTok, a grander version of Musical.ly that gives users an array of editing options to make short, Vine-like videos. In one corner of YouTube, TikTok’s biggest fans upload challenge compilations and weekly updates, each playing like a more elaborate Vine supercut…

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