Hey, good morning! You look fabulous. When the International Olympic Committee decided to make the right call and postpone the Tokyo Olympics, I was disappointed. I was writing a story about Panasonic's robotic exosuits that were going to be assisting Tokyo visitors and Paralympic athletes this summer. I had hoped to report on all the major tech showcases that Japan had planned, too. (Like a broken record, yes, I used to live there and, sure, wanted to visit again.) Whether it was self-driving transport, robotics or 8K broadcast, it was going to be a quintessentially tech Olympics. It still will be, I'm sure, just in 2021. -- Mat
Reality as we know it is very different now than it was just a few weeks ago. The coronavirus pandemic has forced all of us to stay inside, practice social distancing and find ways to cope with this newfound uncertainty. While Engadget staffers work from home to keep you up-to-date on the latest news, we, too, have come up with methods of dealing with this madness. We wanted to share them with you in the hopes that maybe some of these things can help keep you happy, healthy, and sane too. And let us know in the comments what you've been doing to stave off cabin fever. Home workouts and sweatpants I already lead a pretty isolated life. For the past year-plus, I have been working from home and living in a quiet town in Maine. Because the winter is especially cold and dark here, I've left the house even less in the past few months. Just when I could see the spring light at the end of the winter tunnel, we entered this new reality of social distancing. While I am not happy about it, I do feel well-prepared given my WFH experience.
This month, commerce editor Valentina Palladino explains why you should listen a true crime podcast about the dark web, despite its subject matter. Contributing Editor Igor Bonifacic discusses the merits of the latest album from Grimes.
Hey, good morning! You look fabulous. E3 is canceled. Due to the extended threat of the coronavirus pandemic, the gaming industry's biggest event of the year isn't happening. Please add it to the canceled event list that includes SXSW and Google I/O. As we mentioned when the news broke, there were already several question marks hanging over this year's show. Earlier this year, Iam8bit, best known for its video game vinyl releases, resigned as E3 creative directors. The production company didn't give reasons for why it was bowing out, and there were whispers that this would be a very different kind of E3. Last year, an E3 2020 pitch deck was leaked, outlining a "fan, media and influencer festival" that sounded a little different from the usual hands-on areas and industry meetings. Instead, the show would reportedly retool to pull in more of the general public -- and ticket sales. Geoff Keighley, the organizer of The Game Awards and host of the E3 Coliseum event space, announced that he would be skipping the show last month, too, following up with a sober tweet about how this year's E3 was shaping up. Not to mention, Sony was already no-show. Both the team behind PlayStation and Microsoft are planning standalone events to showcase their new consoles. (There will be a digital event for Microsoft's E3 news.) You could argue, then, that our team dodged a bullet. But those games will still be announced, and still playable -- somewhere, at some point. It'll all be in a more piecemeal fashion. -- Mat
Hey, good morning! You look fabulous. James Bond movies have an... interesting dynamic when it comes to product placement. In recent times, there have been fewer Aston Martins and Rolexes. There was that awkward Virgin Atlantic flight (oh, hi Richard Branson), the Heinekens and the weird glut of Sony devices; in recent years, it has been a Sony Pictures co-production. That is, until now. With the delayed-due-to-coronavirus No Time to Die (the most millenial of Bond movie titles) there's a new partner, which means new money-making opportunities. And here comes Nokia. Well, here comes Nokia phone owner HMD. It was Bond's mobile brand of choice a few decades ago -- Daniel Craig used a Nokia 8800 in 2006's Casino Royale. Now Nokia's are, apparently, back, even if James isn't brandishing one, yet. A forthcoming Nokia ad will include Lashana Lynch's character, 00 agent Nomi, completing a mission with the help of the company's as-yet unannounced 5G flagship phone. It doesn't quite have the gravitas of Bond, however, but I'll withhold judgment until I see the ad. Sony once offered millions to Craig to pose with its latest phone ahead of the release of Spectre, a few years ago. That didn't happen. According to a leaked email, Craig wasn't on board, apparently noting that: "James Bond only uses the 'best...' the Sony phone is not the 'best.'" How much does HMD have to spend on marketing? -- Mat
Hey, good morning! You look fabulous. Amazon is offering faster same-day delivery that could get your order to you in a matter of hours. There will apparently be up to three million items marked "Today by" available to order for speedy same-day delivery to Prime members in Philadelphia, Phoenix, Orlando and Dallas. Amazon will even deliver packages while you sleep. Given the company CEO's recent comments on global warming and controversy over its contracted "delivery partners" it seems an odd service to announce. The orders will apparently ship from local fulfillment centers, meaning less air freight and reduced driving distance. Amazon says, "while it may seem counterintuitive, the faster delivery speeds enabled by these facilities actually help us lower carbon emissions." That is if your shopping list is entirely from local centers. We should take those better-for-the-environment claims with a pinch of salt, as the convenience of getting something to your door could outweigh a short walk to local stores or businesses; it could also lead to more frequent orders, more deliveries, more trucks. But if we're doing the ordering, Amazon can claim it's not its fault. Market forces at work. -- Mat
Hey, good morning! You look fabulous. If you can outbid Palmer Luckey then maybe you can get one of the rarest items in gaming history: a working "PlayStation" unit with a CD-ROM and SNES controller. As of this writing, the price of the Nintendo PlayStation prototype has reached $360k, and there are about 20 days left. Good luck! -- Richard
Super Bowl LIV weekend is finally here, and for the first time, we can watch at home with a faux-K feed (it's really 1080p, but it looks great and supports HDR in some cases). Of course, there had to be a catch, and a dispute between Fox and Roku may keep people from using that smart TV platform to tune in on Sunday. There are alternatives, including Amazon's $35 Fire TV 4K stick or signing up for a free trial of Fubo TV, but really, who needs another complication? -- Richard
Hey, good morning! You look fabulous. January is the time of new beginnings, resolutions, health kicks and the rest. So, as the month comes to a close, Facebook is asking two billion users to check their privacy settings. I can already feel the hope and ambition draining away. I come across Facebook users in a two main flavors: the die-hard opt-outs, who keep their page for the sake of communication, but don't login, don't get notifications; and the power users very much fighting the good fight with awkward uncles and aggressive school acquaintances in comments across the network. I'm somewhere in the middle, logging in occasionally on my PC to check any mentions or pictures tagged. I don't have the app on my phone, I don't get emails about Facebook, but I'm active about once a month. (Recently I've been getting a lot of spammy friend requests from strangers -- not sure why.) So who is this privacy setting reminder for? If you use Facebook almost every day, you could sidestep the privacy reminder -- just another notification. If you rarely sign in, will this reminder still be there? The social network has recently offered some other beneficial tools. Its Off-Facebook Activity tool is now available, giving a summary of data from third-party sites (used to show you ads) and, more usefully, the option to nix that data. After a decade when the tide of popular opinion turned against Facebook (Cambridge Analytica, slack rules on political ads, your parents joined), it's hoping for a better ten years. -- Mat
In this installment of our audio IRL, managing editor Terrence O'Brien sings... er, types the praises of a band and a genre that isn't for everyone. Senior news editor Billy Steele gets nostalgic for his glory days as one of his favorite bands is back together.
It was hard to escape 8K TVs this year at CES. Sony, Samsung, LG and TCL all showed off new 8K models, with the full intention of actually selling them to consumers. That's a big shift from previous years, when it's always seemed like some far-off technology awaiting industry support. So what's the point of buying an 8K TV in 2020? Our TV nerds, Devindra Hardawar and Richard Lawler, have two very different stances on the matter.
Several hours of discussions and debate later, Engadget's editors have decided who among our finalists should win our Best of CES awards. Below is our list of winners for each category, as well as Best of the Best and People's Choice. Congratulations to all winners and finalists!
Our editors have been hard at work the past few days finding the latest and greatest gadgets here at CES 2020. Now we're ready to announce our finalists for the official Best of CES awards. Below you'll find our selections for all 15 categories, which range from best TVs to the most sustainable products we've seen at the show. We'll announce our category winners tomorrow, which is also when we'll reveal our Best of the Best award recipient, the most coveted prize of all. That special award is selected from our pool of category winners.
2019 was full of hype. From excitement over foldable phones and laptops to plenty of noise about 5G, the year was packed with news about promising new technology that had the potential to monumentally change the industry. But many of these were first-generation efforts, and what we ended up getting, instead of piles of functional new toys, were buckets of disappointment.
The end of 2019 is nigh, which means it's time for us to take stock of this year's crop of games. And it's been quite a year -- not quite the heights of 2017, to be sure, but still more than we here at Engadget can reasonably play between all the gadgets we review and events we attend. So rather than declare a list of winners, we'll tell you about the titles that captured our hearts and minds this year, the games of 2019 that made our days just a little better and will stick in our memories as we round the corner into the next decade and beyond.
In the latest installment of our audio IRL, contributing writer Kris Holt introduces us to a brass band that's covering some big hits with their own spin. Database editor Ian Levenstein explains why you need to add a culinary-themed show to your regular podcast rotation.
With 2020 fast approaching, it's time for our editors to look back on the year in tech. The first three articles of our year in review went live this morning, covering Spotify's big podcast push, the best games of the year and our favorite gadgets. Over the coming days we've got a lot more for you to read.
Hey, good morning! You look fabulous. Welcome to your weekend! I'm probably the only one with any holiday shopping left to do, so there's no way this gift guide is still useful for anyone else, right? Either way, it's right there if you need it. Sure the plan was to have everything in-hand before today, but things don't always go according to plan -- just ask Motorola, Boeing and SpaceX. The newsletter will be an abbreviated schedule next week, but until then, you can check out some of last week's highlights plus a few new stories from Friday. --Richard
Apple Arcade surprised us. It had an entertaining launch lineup and followed it up with many tempting new additions to the all-you-can-play service. Apple may be more selective with their Arcade entrants than the free-to-play, in-app-payment-loaded games found in the App Store, but there are already 100 games to choose from -- it's already hard to know where to start. So we've given you ten options. While most of you will be playing Arcade from your phone, don't forget you can play across, iPad, Mac and even your Apple TV, too. Some of them benefit from bigger screens and the addition of a Bluetooth controller. (Protip: Your Xbox and PS4 controllers are compatible.) Are we missing something incredible? Get in touch.
If I was going to start my own tech site or media vertical, with no intention of turning a profit or even being all that knowledgeable, I'd do food gadgets. I won't shut up about the Instant Pot, I own a sous vide machine (that I now have a guide for) and the contents of my kitchen drawers are the equivalent of the crying face joy emoji. The festive season and the epic-scale meals that accompany it make it a peak opportunity for simplifying your established cooking norms, but it's also a gamble. My mum has an Instant Pot, sure. Will she use it for sauces or sides for this year's Christmas dinner? Probably not. It's about consistency. She's cooked more Christmas meals than I've had... Christmas meals. I'm not going to suggest she shake things up. The best kitchen tech is simple. I own a Nespresso Barista milk frother. It can heat and whip up milk, making at-home flat whites a possibility. Is it smart, though? It has Bluetooth connectivity and a companion app, but besides downloading new recipes (more or less milk; hotter or colder) that's not remotely necessary. It makes silky milk for my latte nonsense, though, so it keeps its place on the kitchen worktop. Crucially, the metal jug and magnetic stirrer are both incredibly easy to clean -- something all kitchen gadgets could benefit from. - Mat
So how do you categorize a beast like gaming on the PC? With decades of titles to pluck from (and the first port of call for most indie titles, too), there's so much to choose from. Gaming on your PC adds the benefits of (nearly always flawless) backward compatibility and console-beating graphical performance -- if you've got the coin for it. We've tried to be broad with our recommendations here on purpose. There are so many great games out there for your PC, consider these some starting points. For our winter update, we've added Control which replaces League of Legends.