On Gear Live: WWDC 2014: All the big Apple OS X & iOS news!

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Vizio Co-Star

Vizio has announced the Co-Star, its Google TV set-top-box that sets itself apart with two key bulletpoints:

  1. The Co-Star comes with OnLive steaming gaming built-in as an app. Just launch the app, and as long as you have decent broadband, you can play a ton of video games.
  2. Price: Vizio has priced the Co-Star at just $99. That matches it up nicely with higher-end Roku boxes and the Apple TV, and is half the cost of competing Google TV boxes that don't offer OnLive gaming out of the box.

Google TV has certainly had a rough time getting off the ground, and the Co-Star may be the product that offers it the boost that it needs, although we highly doubt it. If you're interested, Vizio starts taking Co-Star preorders next month.

Read More | Vizio

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Wii U

Today we received a question about Nintendo's upcoming console release, Wii U, with GeekWire reader Alex wondering why the company continues to release new peripherals for a console that's seen better days.

Question: What's up with the Wii U? Why is Nintendo releasing yet another expensive peripheral for the aging Wii?

Nintendo originally announced Wii U in June 2011 in a vague manner, leaving much of the pertinent details left to the imagination. Because of this, many assumed that Wii U was the name of the new tablet-esque controller, and that it would interface with the Wii console that originally hit stores in November 2006. Thankfully, nothing could be further from the truth.

Click to continue reading Ask Andru: Is Wii U really a next-generation console?


Xbox Surface leak

Microsoft is set to take the stage in just a few hours to make a major product announcement. Rumors have been running rampant that the company will finally reveal its own tablet. Over the weekend, a document surfaced that goes into detail on a product called Xbox Surface. Xbox Surface is purportedly a 7-inch multi-touch tablet that runs at 720p with WI-Fi, Bluetooth, SD card slot, and up to 7 hours of battery life.

The Xbox Surface would interface with a "stationary computing device" as well, allowing you to stream content from a device that's more powerful than the tablet itself. While utilizing the Xbox brand for a new consumer device seems to make sense, always remember that documents like this one are easily faked. We'll know later today, and of course, will keep you updated.

Read More | CNET

bing voice search

Earlier this week during the Microsoft E3 Media Briefing, the next version of Bing voice search for Xbox 360 was shown off. We were able to see searches performed in both English and Spanish in order to find video content to watch.  You are able to use your voice to search for genres (like comedies, horror, etc.) as well as for specific titles. Bing will then search across all video services, showing you the results that it finds in a grid. So if you look for Rango, it'll show you that you can rent it, but also that you can watch it for free as part of your Netflix subscription. Bing search will also allow you to search for YouTube content as well. This will all come as part of the fall 2012 dashboard update, supporting six languages in the US, and hitting dozens of other countries as well.


Wii U Netflix, hulu, amazon, youtube

If you thought Nintendo wasn't serious about bringing more than just video games over to the Wii U console, think again. This morning during its E3 Media Briefing, Nintendo announced four popular streaming video options that'll be available on Wii U at launch: Netflix, YouTube, Hulu Plus, and Amazon Instant Video. That's not all, though. While you'll be able to watch content from these four service, Nintendo also announced plans for a dual-screen experience with each one. Imagine, for example, that while watching a movie on Netflix, you could pull up all sorts of related content, facts, maps, and other information about that movie on the Wii U GamePad when it launches later this year. Could be interesting, and it sounds a lot like Xbox SmartGlass.


Wii U launch

It's official, folks! This morning at the Nintendo E3 Media Briefing, the company confirmed that Wii U will hit stores this holiday season. No specific price or date was given, but we're guessing that it'll cost about $400 sometime in November. In addition, NintendoLand (the title that will be to Wii U what Wii Sports was to the original Wii) will be available on launch day.


Wii U GamePad

During the Nintendo E3 Media Briefing, it was casually mentioned that the Wii U console will be able to support up to two GamePad accessories at the same time. It's nice to know that some games will be able to allow two players to use the more advanced features that the GamePad has to offer, but there is one catch: when using two GamePads, the frame rate of the Wii U will drop to 30 frames per second. It's not horrible, but it is a performance decrease, so it should be noted. You'll also be able to turn off the second GamePad and get that performance back on the fly.

Check out the video tour of the Wii U GamePad for more on the peripheral.


Xbox Music

We knew Microsoft was planing to do away with the Zune brand, and today the company revealed its new music service during its E3 Media Breifing. Xbox Music will soon be released for the Xbox 360, Windows Phone, and Windows 8. During the presentation, we were able to see that the service takes on the Metro UI, staying consistent with the Xbox 360, Windows Phone, and Windows branding. Expect over 30 million tracks to be available at launch, with the Smart DJ feature that was popular with Zune users to stick around. Microsoft also mentioned that Xbox Music will give you access to your music collection from "any screen," but we don't know if that means we should expect iOS and Android apps like they'll be released for Xbox SmartGlass, or if it just means that you'll be able to access your music from a web browser, similar to Zune. Xbox Music is set to launch later this year.

Click to continue reading Xbox Music replaces Zune, brings 30 million tracks to Xbox 360, Windows 8, Windows Phone


Xbox 360 SmartGlass

That Xbox SmartGlass rumor that we posted at the eleventh-hour has turned out to be true. During the Microsoft E3 Media Briefing this morning, the company gave all the details of the ambitious Xbox SmartGlass feature. SmartGlass is an app that will be available on Windows 8, smartphones, and tablets that will allow the user to view and use content that is tied to the game or video you're currently enjoying. SmartGlass is meant to be used as a second screen, and a great example was given using Game of Thrones. While watching the show on HBO Go on the Xbox 360, you can use the SmartGlass app to view an interactive map that shows where the action in each scene is taking place, offering content and more informational metadata about the show.

Click to continue reading Xbox SmartGlass app to bring dual-screen entertainment to Xbox 360, mobile devices


Nike+ Kinect Training

During the Microsoft E3 Media Briefing today, Nike took the stage to announce Nike+ Kinect Training for the Xbox 360. As avid FuelBand users, we're excited about the possibilites this one brings. With Nike+ Kinect Training, you get a fitness game that ties in to your Nike+ account, your Nike+ FuelBand, and that provides a level of social competition with your friends to keep you motivated. Nike made sure to tout that, with Kinect, Nike+ Kinect Training is able to get precise measurements of both your fitness level and athleticism level. Look for Nike+ Kinect Training in stores this holiday season. Check out the video trailer after the jump.

Click to continue reading Nike+ Kinect Training coming to Xbox 360 this holiday


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