The Morning After: Japan will try to beam solar power from space by 2025

It made a breakthrough in space-based solar energy back in 2015.

Kyoto University

JAXA, Japan’s NASA equivalent, has spent decades trying to make it possible to beam solar energy from space – which seems like technology for a far-future space anime. In 2015, JAXA scientists successfully beamed 1.8 kilowatts of power, enough energy to power an electric kettle 50 meters away, wirelessly. Now, a Japanese public–private partnership will attempt to beam solar energy from space as early as 2025. The project involves deploying into orbit a series of small satellites, which will beam collected solar energy to ground-based receiving stations hundreds of miles away.

While this already seems a huge step up from a kettle 50 meters away, it’s just the start of the challenge. Creating a satellite array that can generate 1 gigawatt of power – or about the output of one nuclear reactor – is estimated to cost around $7 billion with current technologies.

– Mat Smith

The Morning After isn’t just a newsletter – it’s also a daily podcast. Get our daily audio briefings, Monday through Friday, by subscribing right here.

The biggest stories you might have missed

The best DACs for Apple Music Lossless in 2023

Hitting the Books: Renee Descartes had his best revelations while baked in an oven

Meta’s Quest 3 headset could feature color cameras for more lifelike pass-through video

After a rocky start, Formula E’s Gen3 car is living up to its potential

The best Memorial Day tech sales we could find

Fire pits, wireless headphones and a pizza oven.

It’s a national holiday, so of course Memorial Day brings a few bargains and deals so you can celebrate those who served in the military by… shopping. Notable deals include $50 off Sony's excellent WH-1000XM5 headphones, Amazon's Fire TV Stick 4K Max back at an all-time low of $35 and Apple's iPad Air down to $500.

Continue reading.

Naughty Dog says its ‘Last of Us’ multiplayer game needs more time

The studio has other games in development, including a new single-player title.

One of the most notable omissions from this week's PlayStation Showcase was anything from Naughty Dog. Many (including yours truly) expected the studio to reveal more details about its Last of Us multiplayer game, but we'll need to wait a little longer to hear more.

In a statement posted on Twitter, Naughty Dog said, "We're incredibly proud of the job our studio has done thus far, but as development has continued, we've realized what is best for the game is to give it more time." As such, it now seems unlikely we'll hear much about the game during Summer Game Fest (where Naughty Dog offered a first peek at concept art from the project last year).

Continue reading.

US judge grants final approval to Apple’s $50 million butterfly keyboard settlement

Payouts will start rolling out soon.


A US federal court gave final approval to the $50 million class-action settlement over claims Apple knew about and concealed the unreliable nature of keyboards on MacBook, MacBook Air and MacBook Pro computers released between 2015 and 2019. Judge Edward Davila on Thursday called the settlement involving Apple’s infamous butterfly keyboards “fair, adequate and reasonable.” Under the agreement, MacBook users impacted by the saga will receive settlements between $50 and $395. More than 86,000 claims for class member payments were made before the application deadline last March, Judge Davila wrote in his ruling. However, Apple won’t have to admit wrongdoing as part of the settlement agreement.

Continue reading.