The latest game in the long running Plants vs. Zombies series has arrived for PS4, Xbox and PC. Plants vs. Zombies: Battle for Neighborville is a third-person shooter, but it's cartoony enough for older children; EA calls it "our biggest and most accessible shooter ever." Players can compete in head-to-head multiplayer matches and explore new areas solo or in split-screen and online co-op modes.
For the money, the Roku Streaming Stick+ is one of the best choices for viewers who need a way to watch content from apps like HBO Go, Netflix or Hulu. Once in a while, the $60 device will go on sale for $10 off, but you're usually stuck paying full price. According to CNET, the Streaming Stick+ will drop to $50 permanently starting Sunday, making it an even more alluring option -- especially for those who want to try AppleTV+.
The Obama administration initiated a program that required companies with over 100 employees to submit payroll data that, while anonymized, contained information such as employee compensation broken down by race and gender. This data was meant to help identify pay gaps affecting women and people of color. After a delay caused by the Trump administration, the program is back on track, and Intel is pledging to not only submit these statistics to the government, but also to make them public.
As CD sales continue to fall, vinyl is becoming more and more popular of a music format. Some fans enjoy the bigger packaging and artwork while others claim vinyl playback produces a "warmer" tone compared to CDs and digital files. But vinyl doesn't have the flexibility of those formats. Phonocut hopes to change that with its home vinyl recorder, which launches on Kickstarter this week. The device's diamond stylus cuts the waveforms from an external source into a blank 7- or 10-inch vinyl disc so you can create records of compilations or your own music.
The holidays are nearly upon us. For some, that means a whole lot of traveling. Switch owners can stock up on cheap digital downloads during Bandai Namco's publisher sale to stay occupied during flights, long drives and restless nights in lumpy childhood beds. The company's 17 Switch games are discounted by up to 75 percent on Nintendo's eShop from now until October 21st at 11:58 ET.
Nintendo revealed that Dr. Kawashima's Brain Training will come to the Switch on January 3rd, 2020 in Europe. The mental workout game will feature classic exercises from previous Brain Training (called Brain Age in North America) games, as well as new mini-games and puzzles. The news follows the Japanese reveal of the game, which has a hilariously long name: Nintendo Switch Training for Adults with Brain Training Supervised by Prof. Ryuta Kawashima, Research Institute for Aging Medicine, Tohoku University.
Ubisoft is no stranger to TV and movies. Its media division, Ubisoft Motion Pictures, has created four seasons of Rabbids Invasion thus far, and produced the mediocre adaptation of Assassin's Creed. That's not to mention films like Uwe Boll's Far Cry and the controversial Prince of Persia, which were licensed from the publisher. The company is focusing on the small screen for now though, and hopes to reach kids and young adults. The animated series will be comprised of adaptations from titles like Watch Dogs and Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon.
Plenty of gamers are skeptical about cloud-based gaming. Fast internet connections just aren't prevalent enough, the argument goes, and lag will kill the gameplay experience. Google is diving in head first with Stadia, though. In an interview with Edge, Stadia's VP of Engineering Madj Bakar said the platform will eventually be more responsive than consoles. And while the technology to do so sounds silly, the underlying concepts may prove to be effective.
UNICEF, the United Nations' charity that helps underserved children around the world, now accepts donations in bitcoin and ether. As the first UN organization to embrace cryptocurrencies, UNICEF and the recipients of its funding will benefit from the lack of fees that result from money being transferred overseas. Plus, donors will presumably be able to see how their contributions are disbursed to various initiatives.
Like it or not, ads keep the internet running. However, they've become obnoxious and intrusive over the years, leading some to install anti-tracking software on their devices. This makes it difficult for advertisers to show a variety of ads to those users, rather than showing the same ad over and over again. As a privacy-focused workaround, Google -- which dominates the online advertising world -- will use machine learning to manage how frequently an ad is shown to a user when third-party cookies are blocked by users.
<p>We've seen plenty of games that teach kids the basics of coding, but it's rare to see the big game publishers embrace the "edutainment" sector. The latest coding game, though, comes from Ubisoft, the creators of the <em>Assassin's Creed</em> and <em>Rainbow Six</em> franchises. <em>Rabbids Coding</em> -- which features those demented, <a href="https://www.engadget.com/2017/08/28/mario-rabbids-kingdom-battle/">titular creatures</a> that are somehow both annoying <em>and</em> cute -- tasks players with creating routines that will repair the Rabbids' malfunctioning spaceship.</p>
<p><em>DOOM Eternal</em>'s launch was slated for November 22nd -- but to add some polish, publisher Bethesda Softworks is pushing that date back to March 20, 2020. The developer, iD Software, will also add a new feature called Invasion Mode, which will allow players to enter others' campaigns as a playable demon. This new mode will be a free download available shortly after the game arrives.</p>
<p>The tech-literate might think we're impervious to phishing scams, but even the best of us get fooled once in a while. Fraudsters are constantly getting better at using email to impersonate friends, coworkers and big brands to obtain people's personal information and passwords. As a measure against these cons, <a href="https://www.engadget.com/2019/10/04/instagram-threads-auto-status-facebook-privacy/">Instagram</a>'s new security feature adds a list of official emails the company has sent to the app's security tab, letting users double check whether an email they've received is from the company or a scammer.</p>
<p>Arcades are a rare sight these days. But while nothing can match the experience of exchanging a $10 bill for a pile of quarters and binging on some games with your friends, many of the classics have made their way to consoles and PCs. Publisher Forever Entertainment will bring some zombie-blasting arcade action home with re-releases of <em>House of the Dead</em> and <em>House of the Dead 2</em>, Sega's iconic light gun games.</p>
<p>Adobe Photoshop and Premiere Elements 2020 are now available, and both have some new AI-enabled features. The simplified versions of the company's flagship creative applications help amateurs edit high-quality photos and videos, and with the new <a href="https://www.engadget.com/2019/09/13/adobe-premiere-pro-reframes-video/">Sensei-powered</a> tasks, they're easier to use.</p>
<p>After so many <a href="https://search.engadget.com/click/_ylt=AwrJ7FS_75VdInYAiyt8BWVH;_ylu=X3oDMTByMjB0aG5zBGNvbG8DYmYxBHBvcwMxBHZ0aWQDBHNlYwNzYw--/RV=2/RE=1570136127/RO=10/RU=https%3a%2f%2fwww.engadget.com%2f2019%2f09%2f14%2fpixel-4-leak-confirms-specs%2f/RK=2/RS=.UePE5lpAALV.PbTta_KH9AT09c-">photo</a> and <a href="https://www.engadget.com/2019/10/02/pixel-4-motion-sense/">video</a> leaks, the daily revelations about the <a href="https://www.engadget.com/2019/10/03/google-pixel-4-xl-neural-core-specs/">Google Pixel 4</a> can officially be referred to as a deluge. The latest comes from <a href="https://9to5google.com/2019/10/02/exclusive-google-pokemon-pixel-4-video/"><em>9to5Google</em></a>, in the form of a tech demo for the Pixel 4 and Pixel 4 XL's radar-equipped motion sensor. The proof-of-concept app lets users pet, splash and wave at Pokémon characters using vertical and horizontal hand gestures.</p>
<p>E-scooters are convenient for tourists and commuters who want to get around a city. They're equally inconvenient for drivers and pedestrians who have to keep out of the way of scooter traffic. (And that's not to mention the risks they pose <a href="https://www.engadget.com/2019/08/30/miami-electric-scooters-hurricane-dorian/">during a hurricane</a>.) Florida man Randall Thomas Williams certainly isn't a fan of the on-demand vehicles. According to <a href="https://www.nbcmiami.com/news/local/Man-Caught-on-Camera-Tampering-With-Electric-Scooters-in-Fort-Lauderdale-561884241.html"><em>NBC Miami</em></a>, police apprehended the man on September 29th for resisting arrest, prowling and a 3rd degree felony count of criminal mischief.</p>
<p>Programmers, power users and gamers can be <a href="https://www.engadget.com/2018/12/06/how-to-buy-gaming-keyboard-2018/">picky about their keyboards</a>. Not only do some prefer old school microswitch keys, but they also want to get specific about what types of microswitches are under their keycaps. Logitech G's latest device, the PRO X Mechanical Gaming Keyboard, will let you swap between three varieties of switches, providing assorted types of feedback and key travel, from "linear" to "clicky." The keyboard is aimed at pro gamers, but amateurs may also be drawn to the high-end compact design, precision and obligatory <a href="https://www.engadget.com/2019/09/27/razer-seiren-emote-microphone/">RGB</a> lighting.</p>
<p>At $15 per month, an <a href="https://www.engadget.com/2019/04/16/xbox-game-pass-ultimate-gold-price/">Xbox Game Pass Ultimate</a> subscription could be a no-brainer for gamers who play on both PC and Xbox One. The service provides over 100 games for download, including hits like <em>Gears 5</em> and <em>Monster Hunter: World</em>. An Xbox Live Gold membership (which otherwise costs $10 per month) also comes with the subscription, enabling you to join online multiplayer sessions. Microsoft is sweetening the deal even more with a free six-month trial of <a href="https://search.engadget.com/click/_ylt=AwrJ6SRDZpNd0O4Aa0t8BWVH;_ylu=X3oDMTByMjB0aG5zBGNvbG8DYmYxBHBvcwMxBHZ0aWQDBHNlYwNzYw--/RV=2/RE=1569969860/RO=10/RU=https%3a%2f%2fwww.engadget.com%2f2019%2f09%2f06%2fstreaming-dominates-music-revenue%2f/RK=2/RS=kbMMVrXJ.wpvbBWxiPSpx2FXqTI-">Spotify</a> Premium when you join the service.</p>
<p>Instagram is full of fashion-forward users, so it's no surprise that clothing, footwear and luxury brands are more than happy to use the platform as a marketing and sales channel. Select companies can now test an even easier way for consumers to shop with in-app reminders for upcoming product releases.</p>
<p>Google and Amazon don't have the warmest relationship, but they've been patching things up recently. Amazon <a href="https://www.engadget.com/2019/07/09/youtube-app-for-amazon-fire-tv/">reinstated support for YouTube</a> on its Fire TV platform in July, while Google enabled Amazon Prime video streaming through <a href="https://www.engadget.com/2019/04/18/google-amazon-youtube-firetv-prime-video-chromecast/">Chromecast</a> devices. In the latest development, YouTube TV is available on Amazon's Fire TV platform, meaning users can stream live television and use an unlimited cloud-based DVR.</p>
<p>While the official 40th anniversary of Ridley Scott's <em>Alien</em> was back in May, horror junkies and film buffs alike should mark their calendars for this October. The classic movie that started a hit-or-miss franchise of Xenomorphs, space jockeys and milk-blooded androids will be hitting the big screen in select theaters across the US.</p>
<p>HP has announced its updated x360 <a href="https://www.engadget.com/2019/09/23/google-pixelbook-go-leak/">Chromebooks</a>, which feature a 360-degree hinge, 4GB of memory and 32GB of storage. More notable, though, is the Chromebooks' compatibility with the <a href="https://www.engadget.com/2018/02/01/google-universal-stylus-initiative/">Universal Stylus Initiative</a>'s standard. USI 1.0 enables stylus compatibility across any touchscreen device that has integrated the technology, meaning you'll be able to use the same stylus for your smartphone, tablet and touchscreen computer.</p>
<p>Reports of malware-laden Android apps with millions of downloads are becoming <a href="https://www.engadget.com/2019/08/28/google-android-malware-app-camscanner/">a monthly occurrence</a>. Google recently removed 25 more apps from the Play Store after Symantec discovered that they shared similar malicious code structure. These apps, which seemed like benign photo and fashion apps, were downloaded by users over 2.1 million times.</p>
<p>When it launched alongside, one of the Xbox One's main selling points was voice control, delivered via an upgraded Kinect unit. Kinect was quickly phased out, though, and Alexa and Cortana voice controls eventually served as a replacement. Now, Google Assistant users will be able to yell at their <a href="https://search.engadget.com/click/_ylt=AwrE1yBO0YxdTMMAWHN8BWVH;_ylu=X3oDMTByMjB0aG5zBGNvbG8DYmYxBHBvcwMxBHZ0aWQDBHNlYwNzYw--/RV=2/RE=1569538510/RO=10/RU=https%3a%2f%2fwww.engadget.com%2f2019%2f09%2f24%2fxbox-one-best-games%2f/RK=2/RS=O8cXeR3EZ9omwnNNITLNzeMatpE-">Xbox One</a>, too, thanks to a software update rolling out today.</p>