The sun will set on 2014 in just a few hours, and we are just in time with our annual top 10 list of the most-watched Gear Live video episodes. Over the past year, as expected, there was a bunch of Apple gear that made the list, with the release of the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. The launch of the WWE Network was also groundbreaking, and our walkthrough proved to be the second most popular video of the year. Other items, like a tutorial on upgrading Xbox One controllers, a look at the Fitbit Force, and a how-to on installing the Nest Protect also proved popular as well.
It's Christmas morning, and it's a Thursday, which means you have the whole day to play with your new toys (barring any crazy family functions that aim to pry you away!) while taking a day off. We just wanna know one thing--what'd you get? Anything that was listed on our 2014 Holiday Gift Guide? Anything obscure? Any straight up ridiculous gifts that seemingly came out of left field? We wanna hear it all! Lay it on us in the comments!
HP has announced its new super-thin notebook in the EliteBook Folio 1020. Powered by Intel's new Core M processor (which is going to lead to a bunch of thin laptops being released in the future,) the EliteBook Folio 1020 weighs in at as little as 2.2 pounds and is 15.7mm thin, depending on which model you decide to pick up. The regular model actually weighs 2.6 pounds with a 12.5-inch 1080p display and can be specced with a touchscreen display. The special edition model weighs 2.2 pounds with a body forged our of carbon fiber and magnesium-lithium allow, and sports a 12.5-inch quad HD display (no touchscreen.) Both have 8GB SAM, a 128GB or 256GB SSD, and 9 hours of battery life.
You can pick up the standard edition starting in February, while the Special Edition will be available in April. Priving has yet to be revealed for either of the two models, but if I had to guess, both will likely cost more than the MacBook Air that they look to compete with on size and shape.
While the HP EliteBook Folio won't be available for a couple of months, we were able to get one in here at Gear Live in order to bring you an advanced preview of the hardware. Check it out in our HP EliteBook Folio 1020 photo gallery.
Gallery: HP EliteBook Folio 1020 hands-on
Somehow, 10 years have already passed since the release of Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas--arguably the most innovative game in the series. To coincide with the recent anniversary, Rockstar re-released the game on Xbox 360, replacing the Games on Demand version with a slightly improved version. And while the game itself remains an enjoyable experience, this may not be the best way of revisiting it.
I find myself occasionally in the mood to play one of the classic GTA III-era games (GTA III, Vice City, and San Andreas), which are among my all-time favorite games. I typically ignore this compulsion or simply spend a few minutes with the iPhone version of GTA III; I get my small dose of nostalgia but invariably stop playing because, despite Rockstar's best efforts, these are not games that work well on a touchscreen.
An improved re-release of San Andreas was exciting news for me--while a release on Xbox One or PS4 would have been ideal, a cheap Xbox 360 version with improved graphics, better draw distance, and achievements sounds like a great way to revisit the game.
Apple is renowned for paying extreme attention to user experience, so when their new lines of phones featuring bigger screens came out in September, it was just a matter of time before apps started being optimized to take advantage of this change. The difference in resolution is quite notable, the iPhone 6 coming with a resolution of 750 by 1334 pixels and a 4.7 inches screen, and the iPhone 6 Plus boasting a resolution of 1080 by 1920 pixels and a 5.5 inches screen, whereas the previous generation of iPhones (iPhone 5, 5C and 5S) came with a 4 inch display with a resolution of 640 by 1336 pixels. There are several apps that are already on the bandwagon with the new resolutions – here are the top 10 picks.
About a month ago, Apple took the stage at the Flint Center to unveil the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. Later this week, the company will hold another special event, then time to reveal this years iPad lineup, and if reports are correct, updated iMacs (including one with a Retina display.) We’ve heard conflicting reports as to whether the iPad mini will see an update at the event, or if that’ll come early next year, but we do know that the iPad Air will get an update that will make it lighter, slimmer, and more powerful.
Vietnamese leak site Tinhte.vn has already showed what’s purported to be the iPad Air 2 frame, which is thinner and sees the volume buttons recessed into the frame, and the inclusion of a Touch ID sensor, bringing the iPhone feature over to the Apple tablet family.
Meanwhile, fans of Apple’s desktop hardware have been waiting for a couple of years for the Retina display technology to make the jump from iOS devices and Apple notebooks over to the iMac. It appears that a 27-inch model that sports a 5K resolution may be prepped for Thursday as well, alongside a possible Mac mini refresh. OS X Yosemite may also launch on Thursday, as Apple has released three Golden Master candidates to developers so far.
We’ll have all the news here on Gear Live as it happens, and Apple will also have a live stream of the event as well.
Read More | Tinhte
There were any number of reasons to be excited for Middle Earth: Shadow of Mordor, which launched earlier this week. For myself and many others, it was the Nemesis system--which promises unique enemies and emergent gameplay--that was the most exciting aspect of all. And while it's certainly an intriguing feature, I can't help but feel I've been missing out on it for basically being too good at the game.
Until reviews started to hit the web, I was very cautious in being optimistic about Monolith's first-ever Lord of the Rings game. For being such a major franchise, quality games based on it have been few and far between--something that's especially surprising considering its renewed popularity following the release of Peter Jackson's movies. Once I heard the almost-unanimous praise from the reviewers I trust, I was onboard. I was ready to finally play a LotR game that was a genuinely good game, not another passable one that I accepted because it happened to make use of one of my favorite franchises.
Today, Microsoft officially announced the next version of Windows: Windows 10. If you’re confused, you’re not alone. The currently-available version of Windows is 8.1, which means that Microsoft has inexplicably decided to forego version 9 altogether. Rumors that the next version would be called Windows TH, Windows One, or Windows 9 have now been dashed—Windows 10 is the future of Microsoft’s desktop operating system. It’s also still technically the 9th release of Windows.
At an unveiling event earlier today, the company called Windows 10 the “most comprehensive platform ever,” as it will run on all displays, from 4-inches and up. That means Windows 10 will run on phones, tablets, laptops, desktops, servers, and high definition television screens. “Windows 10 will deliver the right experience on the right device at the right time," said Microsoft's Terry Myerson. "Windows 10 will run on the broadest types of devices ever."
Optimists will say that Microsoft is listening to all of the negative backlash that was met with the release of Windows 8, taking in that feedback, and reverting a bunch of changes to give customers what they want. Others will point out that Windows 10 looks like a mashup of the beloved Windows 7 and the polarizing Windows 8, with a bunch of Mac OS X features (like Expose and Mission Control) thrown in, and is an obvious step backwards. We see both sides of the argument, but it’s also very early to tell, as Windows 10 won’t ship until late 2015.
Today in the Gear Live Deals Shop you can enter our iPhone 6 giveaway! The device is hard to come by in stores, is backordered online, and is the most popular smartphone on the market right now. And we're giving one away.
Here's how this is gonna go down: The grand prize winner will walk away with a $650 Apple Store gift card, which will allow you to select the iPhone 6 of your choice. Ready to enter? Go get it:
Apple has release iOS 8 to the world, bringing with it a host of new features for the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. Users will find improvements to just about every stock iOS app, as well as new additions like Health, Continuity, and Handoff. We published our full iOS 8 review this morning, which you can read for a full rundown of what to expect. Here’s a list of the compatible devices:
- iPhone 5s
- iPhone 5c
- iPhone 5
- iPhone 4s
- iPod touch 5th generation
- iPad Air
- iPad mini with Retina display
- iPad mini
- iPad with Retina display
- iPad 2
You can update to iOS 8 now, either through an over-the-air update, or by plugging in to iTunes and having it perform the update for you. Of course, iOS 8 will ship on the new iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus this Friday.