Welcome to your midweek. How's it gone so far? Microsoft's big annual conference kicks off today, and we've sniffed out what you can expect. We also get the full reveal of Amazon's Echo-with-a-screen. It's not pretty, but it does sound pretty smart.
While it's a mobile computing world, Microsoft has no shortage of projects we need to be updated on. Alongside the very latest iteration of Windows 10 (a new design interface? Family sharing hubs?), we expect more on Microsoft's voice assistant Cortana, which has popped in all kinds of hardware. Windows 10 S has also only just arrived, so more on that, and, if we're lucky some Hololens and VR updates would be just lovely.
The leaks were correct, and now Amazon's touchscreen Echo is available for pre-orders. Besides the 7-inch display, it has a front camera to support video calls with a new Alexa Calling feature, and they're even available in pairs for a $100 discount. The screen also enables you to "Drop In" instantly on family and friends, check shopping lists or watch YouTube videos. The Echo Show starts shipping June 28th.
The reason cited? Comey's handling of last year's investigation into Hillary Clinton's email server, and the way he announced he would not bring charges against her. Things not listed as factors in his firing were Comey's decision to refute Trump's claim of wiretapping by former President Barack Obama, or that he was heading an investigation into the Trump campaign's connections to Russia. Reportedly, Comey learned of his firing while giving a speech to FBI employees as TV screens in the background started flashing the information.
Hulu's cable TV-alike offering enters a crowded marketplace of internet video services, facing off against Sling TV, PlayStation Vue, DirecTV Now and YouTube TV. As Devindra Hardawar found, in its current beta state, it's at its best while watching live TV. As-is, the UI requires a bit too much swiping for his taste, and a lack of AMC means that even with a $40 per month price, it doesn't include access to The Walking Dead, which could be a deal-breaker. It does have Hulu's streaming service built-in, but it will be up to viewers to decide if The Handmaid's Tale and other exclusives are a worthy tradeoff.
Conventional motion capture rigs -- the ones that use visual markers and arrays of infrared cameras -- cost tens of thousands of dollars, making them prohibitively expensive for everyone but major studios. But a new, cameraless system from Danish startup Rokoko, called the Smartsuit Pro, aims to make Hollywood-quality motion capture affordable for everybody. Andrew Tarantola zipped himself into one of those suits, and became a dancing mannequin. All for your entertainment.
One man asked how many retweets it would take to earn himself a year of free Wendy's chicken nuggets. The company said 18 million, but once he broke the retweet record, he got his nugs anyway. I hope this makes it into history lessons one day.
Bethesda's Prey reboot has been out for less than a week, and already players are posting some truly insane speedruns. DraQu's sub twenty-minute run-through seen on YouTube uses the GLOO Cannon -- an early weapon that can slow down enemies and create small platforming blocks -- to access areas that would normally take hours to unlock. While he isn't cheating, more subverting the rules of the game, the effect is pretty incredible.
Both iterations of Samsung's beautiful new Galaxy S8 are coming to the US, unlocked. Price-wise, they'll set you back $724.99 and $824.99 for the 5.8-inch and 6.2-inch models, respectively. Pre-order from Best Buy or directly through Samsung today and you'll get your device unshackled from the carrier gods when it becomes available this May 31st.
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