The Morning After: Sony plans to bring its hit PlayStation series to smartphones

Nintendo's results have been mixed.


Whatever Sony is planning is in its early days, but the company is hiring an executive at PlayStation Studios to focus on taking PlayStation's "most popular franchises" to mobile platforms. Mobile gaming is the biggest gaming platform there is. If you’ve got a smartphone, you can play games. Recent hits, like Fortnite, have also proved that console-quality titles are now possible on smartphone hardware.

Sony also has a raft of hugely popular franchises to tap into, from Uncharted through to Horizon: Zero Dawn, The Last of Us and more — although the latter might already be getting enough attention with recent rumors of a remake swirling.

The Morning After

While Sony titles made for mobile are a rare occurrence, Sony did try before, in the early days of Android smartphones. The Xperia Play, with slideout gamepad controls, fizzled out back in 2011. It could play an array of original PlayStation games, as well as offer physical controls for other mobile games without the need for a peripheral. Unfortunately for die-hard gamers, it never quite gained traction. A 10-year gap, then, sounds like long enough to give smartphone gaming another chance.

— Mat Smith

Samsung Galaxy S21 FE leak suggests a familiar design

It probably won’t break the bank or the mold.

The Morning After

Samsung was bound to launch a successor to the Galaxy S20 FE given how well it sold, and details suggest that, yes, unsurprisingly, it’ll look much like the regular Galaxy S21, complete with a glass-like plastic shell and three-sensor camera unit. Don’t expect it to appear too soon though. Last year’s Fan Edition didn’t break cover until September, and the Galaxy S21 series is barely out the gate. Continue reading.

NASA delays Mars helicopter flight to at least April 14th

The space agency is being cautious after some early tests.

The Morning After

NASA has delayed Ingenuity's first flight to "no earlier than" April 14th after a test on April 9th went awry. The high-speed spin test finished prematurely after a watchdog timer (meant to catch technical issues) expired while the helicopter was shifting to flight mode.

The team has every right to be cautious: There are no do-overs when there’s only one drone on Mars. Continue reading.

Microsoft might be close to buying speech-tech giant Nuance

It could give Microsoft advantages in AI, health tech and beyond.

Bloomberg sources claim Microsoft is in "advanced talks" to buy speech technology giant Nuance in a deal worth roughly $16 billion. While there are no guarantees the move could go forward, negotiations have progressed enough that the two could announce a deal as early as this week. Nuance is well known for its AI-guided speech recognition, and Microsoft could incorporate both that and any other AI tools (including those aimed at customer service) into future products. Microsoft has already worked with Nuance on Cloud for Healthcare. And if the deal doesn’t quite work out? Well, Microsoft is also apparently pursuing Discord — it’s keeping busy. Continue reading.

Alibaba hit with $2.8 billion fine in China antitrust case

The probe looked into Alibaba's 'monopolistic practices.'

Chinese authorities have slapped Alibaba with a $2.8 billion fine following an antitrust investigation that looked into alleged monopolistic practices. In December, the State Administration for Market Regulation launched a probe into the e-commerce giant's "suspected monopolistic conduct," which focused on Alibaba’s policy that forces merchants to sell on its platforms exclusively, preventing them from selling on rival e-commerce websites. Continue reading.

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