Hey, good morning! You look fabulous. Welcome to your weekend! Now that Apple's new laptop is here, it's time to tear it apart and look inside. Disney is responding to Simpsons fans, and Amazon has a new high-quality Echo speaker. Finally, there's a new episode of the Engadget Podcast and we'll look back at some highlights from this week like our hands-on with Motorola's new foldable RAZR.
Netflix distributes content in nearly every country around the world now, which has meant making edits to content in some places based on local laws. In the case of a Patriot Act with Hasan Minhaj episode that was critical of Saudi Arabia's government, the streamer pulled it entirely in the country, while continuing to maintain that it believed in "artistic freedom." This week, just after CEO Reed Hastings commented on the Saudi Arabia incident by saying "we are not in the truth to power business, we're in the entertainment business," it faced a different complaint from Poland's government. A documentary series added this month called The Devil Next Door is about an John Demjanjuk, who was living in Cleveland until Holocaust survivors identified him in the as a notorious Nazi death camp guard and he was later extradited to stand trial. He was eventually convicted, and died while the case was being appealed in 2012.
In May, the US Commerce Department added Huawei to the "Entity List," banning US companies from doing business with it unless they have a special license. Since then it has extended temporary licenses for existing customers, like mobile phone users and rural telecoms that use its equipment. The most recent extension is set to expire next week, but the New York Times reports the Trump administration is set to extend it a third time, for a length of time that is unknown. This deadline is arriving against the backdrop of negotiation over trade between the US and Chinese government, and the report also indicates that the administration is considering "product specific" licenses that would allow some companies to keep supplying Huawei.
As soon as Disney+ launched, fans of The Simpsons noticed a big problem. In a repeat of an issue that occurred when FXX started playing old episodes a few years ago, someone made the decision to crop and zoom older 4x3 aspect ratio episodes to fill out an HD widescreen frame. It was eventually corrected, and it turns out that new owner Disney will also fix things up -- eventually. In a statement, a Disney spokesperson said that "in early 2020" it will offer a toggle for the first 19 seasons of episodes so people can choose to view them in their original format -- important for many visual gags that extend to the top or bottom of the frame -- or widescreen-adjusted. Disney: We presented "The Simpsons" in 16:9 aspect ratio at launch in order to guarantee visual quality and consistency across all 30 seasons. Over time, Disney+ will roll out new features and additional viewing options. As part of this, in early 2020, Disney+ will make the first 19 seasons (and some episodes from Season 20) of "The Simpsons" available in their original 4:3 aspect ratio, giving subscribers a choice of how they prefer to view the popular series.
Earlier this week T-Mobile CEO John Legere's name popped up as a possibility to take over the top spot at WeWork after its failed IPO and ouster of co-founder Adam Neumann. However, subsequent rumors clarified that he was just one of the potential replacements, while today CNBC reports that Legere isn't taking the job and has "no plans" to leave T-Mobile. The report also cites people with knowledge of the matter as saying he was not the top candidate for the job, which would have presented a tricky transition as Softbank is both the majority owner of WeWork, and Sprint, which his company is still in the process of merging with.
Hey, good morning! You look fabulous. Once you're done watching episode two of The Mandalorian, you can catch up with all of Microsoft's news from X019, as well as an update on next-gen texting for Android phones. In car news, details about Ford's Mach-E have leaked ahead of its unveiling this weekend, and Tesla's sedans are back in Consumer Reports' good graces.
We're still a few days away from the official unveiling of Ford's 'Mustang-inspired' all-electric Mach-E crossover, but you don't have to wait for more information. A poster on MachEForum.com apparently figured out a working URL for the automaker's hidden website complete with pictures, specs and model info for the vehicle. While our friends at Autoblog have posted up a number of pictures showing camouflaged prototypes during test runs, these shots clearly show the two-door crossover in red, which is one of three exterior color options available for its "limited edition" model. While its Mustang inspiration seems mostly limited to the headlights and taillights, it's at least fairly sleek, and imbued with the kind of performance angle Ford is clearly pursuing.
Tonight CNBC reports that an ongoing antitrust investigation of Google undertaken by 50 attorneys general is expanding. While it started by looking into Google's advertising business, it has apparently, as expected, expanded its scope to include search and the Android platform. Over the years Google has reached into more services -- next up: checking -- and platforms with increasingly deep ties to one another, and as the investigation concerns the use of customer data, it seems obvious that it will reach every part of the company eventually. The 48 state AGs, as well as two representing Washington D.C. and Puerto Rico, did not comment on the latest report, while Google said in a September blog post that it would cooperate with investigations.
Last year the Supreme Court ruled, in a 5-4 decision, that a search warrant is required for law enforcement to perform cellphone tower searches to track someone's location. The Daily Beast reported on a letter sent by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) to Senator Ron Wyden affirming that ever since that Carpenter decision, the "Intelligence community" has not sought cell-site location data or GPS records without a warrant. It had been doing that, claiming authority under the Title V of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) / Section 215 of the Patriot Act. However Section 215 of the Patriot Act is set to expire next month, and in the letter (PDF), the assistant director writing it never confirms that the Supreme Court decision means they couldn't, or wouldn't, do it in the future.
Hey, good morning! You look fabulous. Two of the most-leaked products this year have been officially unveiled. We knew they were coming, but now we've seen Apple's 16-inch MacBook Pro (and put our fingers on its revamped keyboard) as well as Motorola's foldable RAZR. Beyond the new hardware, there's a deeply discounted iPad Pro to consider, and Netflix is teaming up with Nickelodeon to fight back against Disney+.
Black Friday is still a couple of weeks away but retailers are doing everything they can to get and keep your attention right now. For Walmart, that means releasing its ad now to tease Black Friday offers like a $129 Apple Watch Series 3, $99 Samsung Chromebook Series 3 or a 1080p 40-inch Roku Smart TV from its house brand onn. for $98. Deals you can jump on starting today include a 512GB 10.5-inch iPad Pro for $599 -- the lowest price we've seen. This is the 2017-era second generation model, so while it doesn't come with newer features like FaceID, A12X Bionic CPU or a USB-C connector, it still packs impressive power to multitask with Apple's new iPad OS, and at this price -- a comparable third-gen Pro costs $1,149 -- its performance is hard to beat. At the time we originally reviewed it, two problems were that it was expensive and iOS 11 wasn't out yet -- those have now been addressed. Buy 10.5-inch 512GB iPad Pro on Walmart - $599 If you have milder tablet aspirations, there's also a 7-inch 8GB Samsung Galaxy Tab A available now for $78. Walmart has more pre-Black Friday deals planned for next Friday too, so stay tuned. Buy Samsung Galaxy Tab A on Walmart - $78
Six years ago John Carmack left the company he founded, iD Software, to join Oculus VR as its Chief Technology Officer and push forward the future of virtual reality tech. Today the engineer behind many developments in 3D gaming has announced that a new "consulting CTO" role at Oculus "will only be consuming a modest slice of my time." Instead, he's turning his focus to Artificial General Intelligence (AGI), or AI that can pick up intellectual tasks like a human being does. That's in contrast to the "AI" you see today, which is usually a very narrowly focused set of algorithms built for a specific task. In 2014, Carmack told Engadget that the prime motivation behind his decision to join Oculus was development of Samsung's Gear VR headset. Since then, virtual reality growth has happened in fits and starts, with less focus on mobile platforms. Also, Oculus was acquired by Facebook, and there was a protracted legal battle with Zenimax, the company that acquired iD Software after he left, over the copyright to VR code. Oculus founder Palmer Luckey and other executives have left the company since Facebook took over, following a pattern seen at its other acquisitions like WhatsApp and Instagram. Still, Carmack suggests he'll continue to have a role with Oculus, and similar to the shift that brought him to the company, it seemed inevitable he would move on to another field at some point after 3D engines and aerospace work. According to his Facebook post, the alternative was "cost effective nuclear fission reactors," which just aren't suitable for working from home.
Hey, good morning! You look fabulous. We're bracing for a big update from Apple and digging into a 'maclunkey' first day for Disney+ streaming. Minecraft Earth is available for you to play, and Goldman Sachs is looking into how credit scores are being interpreted for Apple Card offers.
After launching manufacturing facilities in the US and China, Tesla's next location is apparently in Europe. Reuters and CNBC report that while speaking at an awards ceremony in Germany, Elon Musk announced the company's 'Gigafactory 4' will be located in the Berlin area. Musk later tweeted out "Giga Berlin," and said that the location "Will build batteries, powertrains & vehicles, starting with Model Y." This follows its current facilities in Nevada, Buffalo and its newest addition in Shanghai, China. Apparently this one will also include an engineering and design center. Tesla bought a German engineering firm in 2016 to help build the Model 3, and it appears those efforts will grow as it launches production of the Model Y, and, presumably, the electric "cybertruck" that's supposed to be revealed next week.
Hey, good morning! You look fabulous. This morning, we have a fresh holiday gift guide for you to flip through, plus all the information you might need about Disney+ now it's actually available. In other news, there's a new rumor or two about Apple's augmented reality plans, plus we reviewed Microsoft's larger Surface Laptop 3. Oh -- and the Sonic the Hedgehog movie is back with a new trailer showing off Sonic's de-creepified design.
It's November 12th, and Disney has thrown the doors open on its streaming service Disney+. If you live in the US, Canada or the Netherlands, then you can get unprecedented access to the Disney vault as well as some interesting new original content. That includes most of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, The Mandalorian and more. Original shows on Disney+ won't drop all at once, so plan your binge-watching accordingly. Several new series premiered tonight, and they'll each add new episodes every Friday from now on. While Disney, Pixar, National Geographic and Marvel all present tantalizing options, a last-minute surprise is the news that all of the Star Wars movies streaming right now are available in 4K Ultra HD, a first-ever for the first seven movies in the series. Other selections that are available for the first time with 4K and HDR include Hocus Pocus, Who Framed Roger Rabbit and Toy Story 1-3. The price for all that is $6.99 per month or $69.99 per year -- there is a 7-day free trial -- while a bundle option for those who want to add ESPN+ and Hulu (with ads) to the subscription is available for $12.99 per month. If you're looking for the apps, these are the devices supported at launch: Amazon FireTV and FireOS, Apple iOS, Android/Chromecast, Roku, Xbox One, PS4, LG webOS smart TVs and Samsung Smart TV.
Another new week, another new streaming service. Disney+ is activating on the apps and services where it's available (iOS, Android, Roku, etc.) and bringing with it a ton of archived content from Disney, Marvel, Lucasfilm and even The Simpsons. The highlight show is the one we've been waiting for, with Pedro Pascal starring as The Mandalorian. But it's not the only new show appearing this week. Netflix's response to the new challenger includes new full season drops of The Toys That Made Us and The Crown, while Disney's series will give you one episode today, with new episodes added each Friday. Amazon, meanwhile, is releasing season four of The Man in the High Castle. For gamers, Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order is this week's biggest name, and if you prefer to avoid subscribing to an extra service, Star Trek Discovery season two is available on Blu-ray, along with anniversary releases of Spirited Away and Heathers. In sports, the F1 season is moving along with action in Brazil. Look after the break to check out each day's highlights, including trailers and let us know what you think (or what we missed).
With tomorrow's launch of Disney+ just hours away, the newest entrant into the streaming wars has added just a little more incentive. Nearly a month ago a mammoth video and tweetstorm previewed "basically everything" coming to Disney+ at launch, but since then Disney dropped in surprise news that Avengers: Endgame will be available day one (earlier than expected), and now it has filled out the MCU lineup with a total of 16 out of 23 movies.
After developing FlyEase shoes based on Lebron and Jordan models, Nike has adapted its technology for zip-up basketball sneakers to a whole new sport: football. These unique cleats are made for a (so far) one-of-a-kind athlete -- Seattle Seahawks linebacker Shaquem Griffin. Griffin is in his second season as an NFL player, but unlike many others on the field during Monday Night Football, he has one hand. His left hand did not fully develop due to amniotic band syndrome and was amputated at age four. Similar to the FlyEase models we've seen before, the Shaquem Griffin FlyEase football cleat manages to create a heel entry that's easier to put on for someone with one hand, while maintaining the structure and stability needed to make the powerful moves of a pro football player. That way Griffin can focus on his game, and not his shoes, which are making their prime-time debut tonight against the 49ers.
Hey, good morning! You look fabulous. Before you get your week started, consider taking a look at Mercury's transit this morning -- it might be your last chance to see it for quite a while. Also, the Halo TV series is finally in production, and Apple's Mac Pro made an unexpected cameo in Calvin Harris' Instagram story.
Hey, good morning! You look fabulous. Welcome to your weekend! The Engadget Podcast is diving into the streaming wars ahead of Disney+ opening its doors next week, and we've got a review of the Beats Solo Pro headphones. Also, there's a big change coming to Instagram, and we'll look at some highlight stories from the past week like the Mustang Lithium EV and Microsoft's new Office app for iOS and Android.
Two years ago, then-head of Mercedes Dieter Zetsche said the brand planned to have electric versions for all of its models by 2022. One year ago Mercedes unveiled its first electric SUV. Now, per a tweet by Head of Digital Transformation at Daimler AG Sascha Pallenberg, the new CEO Ola Källenius promised a zero-emission version of the company's G-Class.
While the first two Westworld seasons were centered around the use of AI and robotics technology at a sort of vacation getaway, the teaser revealed tonight turns the lens back toward Silicon Valley tech giants. In a promotion linked to the Wired 25 event, the trailer links to a company "Incite Inc." that will apparently feature somehow in the show's third season, which is scheduled to air on HBO in 2020 -- just in time for the launch of HBO Max. The fictional company follows previous Westworld promos we've seen at events like SXSW by having a booth at the event and sponsoring a rooftop cocktail reception.
Instagram has been testing out a change that hides the "likes" counter on posts around the world for months, but not in the US. According to Instagram head Adam Mosseri, that's about to change. During an interview at the Wired 25 event today Mosseri explained that it will start testing the change in the US next week, "not the whole US at once," but enough that some of you will have it on your profiles. With the test enabled, people still see the number of likes on their own posts, but not other people. He said the purpose is to "depressurize" Instagram, and they're looking to see how it impacts the feelings of users, as well as how they continue to interact with the platform. Instagram has previously said "We want your friends to focus on the photos and videos you share, not how many likes they get. You can still see your own likes by tapping on the list of people who've liked it, but your friends will not be able to see how many likes your post has received." When and where the test is enabled, looking at someone else's profile simply shows a picture has been liked by [one name] and others. Of course, that doesn't stop people from focusing purely on follower count as a measure of comparing popularity, and you'll still see when only one person liked your vacation photo (thanks Greg, you're a real one), but maybe it's a small step in the right direction.
There's an impeachment inquiry taking place against Donald Trump, which started with a whistleblower complaint about conduct on a call with officials in the Ukraine. Outlets like Breitbart have published content claiming to name the person who initially filed the complaint claiming the president violated his oath of office. Now the latest free speech flashpoint for social networks is whether or not to allow the spread and amplification of the name, while lawyers for the whistleblower argue that publishing a potential name puts that person at risk. CNN reports that Facebook and YouTube have decided to remove posts with the name, while Twitter -- where US House Rep. Matt Gaetz and Donald Trump Jr. have shared posts with the name -- says it is not against the rules. With public hearings on the matter scheduled to start next week, this is unlikely to go away anytime soon.