It's been a very, very good week for Engadget. On Wednesday, Aol announced it had purchased gdgt and, while we generally don't pay much heed to the acquisitional whims of our parent company, this one we're very, very excited about -- and you should be too. Gdgt is the creation of Engadget founder Peter Rojas and former editor-in-chief (and current editor emeritus) Ryan Block. They founded gdgt as a product-focused site in 2008 and, over the ensuing years, transformed it into a comprehensive database of the world's gadgetry, all that backed by an active community of people brought together by an innate love for the hottest in tech.
Of course, technology is one thing, but talent isn't so easily acquired, and that's what I'm most excited about. Not only do we have a team of amazing designers, developers, producers and more joining us, we have Peter Rojas and Ryan Block coming back into the immediate family. Really, I never saw them as having left per se, as I've had many conversations with the two of them over the years, but now they're going to be playing a much greater part. Peter is going to be contributing to the site quite a bit more and is taking the role of executive editor at large, while Ryan is going to be focused on raising the bar for the form and function of Engadget as well as our sister tech sites, TUAW and Joystiq. If you ask nicely, they might even show up on the podcast from time to time.
Suffice to say there's a lot of good stuff coming. 2013 is going to be a great year for Engadget, and we're glad you'll be there to join us.
It's rather too early to say what exactly the future holds as we welcome the amazing gdgt team, but a quick look at what their site offers today makes it easy to see why we're so excited about the potential as our forces combine, Wonder Twins-like. Suffice to say there's a lot of good stuff coming. 2013 is going to be a great year for Engadget, and we're glad you'll be there to join us, but for now let's get on to the week in tech.
Apple this week lowered the price of many of its MacBook models. The 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display drops to $1,499, while the Air with 256GB of flash storage is now $1,399. A suite of new, faster processors available on both the 13- and 15-inch Retina Pros helps to sweeten the deal.
Apple also rolled out an iOS update, 6.1.1, interestingly only to the iPhone 4S (for now). The decimal increment promises to fix some of the cellular issues that users have been facing of late, but interestingly introduces an ornery lock-screen bypass that very patient (and nimble-fingered) hooligans could use to get into your device. Expect another update soon.
Google, meanwhile, started pushing Android 4.2.2 to select Nexus devices (promising performance improvements and a few other tweaks), and finally, after an incredibly long wait, released the Nexus 4 wireless charger. It is, at least for the moment, only available in the US, but for $59.99 we Americans now have another weapon against this phone's insatiable hunger.
Finally, there was a huge to-do this week surrounding a New York Times write-up (and takedown) of the Tesla Model S. John M. Broder of the Times wrote of running out of charge with a loaner car (the very same one we tested for our review), blaming cold weather and inaccurate chargers. CEO Elon Musk took to Twitter, calling the article "fake" and later fired back with a full data log disproving Broder's claims. I tried to make some sense of it all, but it's safe to say that future Model S testers will probably be driving somewhat more conscientiously.
In this week's Distro we're bringing you a trio of reviews, including Dana Wollman's take on the ASUS TAICHI 21, an Ultrabook with some interesting design attributes. Mat Smith falls in love with the budget-minded Nokia Lumia 620, what could be the perfect Windows Phone, while Jamie Rigg tries out the similarly low-priced HTC One SV. Brad Molen files the first installment of his "Back to BlackBerry" series, in which he lives with the Z10 for 30 days, and Sean Buckley looks at the Wii U's digital content woes. Ross Rubin looks at ARM vs. Intel in Switched On, Josh Fruhlinger dispels the myth of Japan being a world of weirdos in Modem World and Flynt Flossy, the alliterative co-CEO of Turquoise Jeep, does Q&A. Download and you may enjoy it at your own pace. Rest easy: I won't call you out on Twitter if you skim through the articles. That's for you and your conscience to live with.
Tim Stevens is Editor-in-chief of Engadget and Editorial Director for AOL Tech. You can find him on Twitter at @tim_stevens.