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  • It’s probably a trap: Star Wars fans can now fund new Death Star on Kickstarter

    Is this the death of crowsourcing? Nope. Only the death of the human race, it seems. A Manchunian Palpatine fan has taken to Kickstarter to fund the intricate construction of a £9 "Death Star." Perhaps in tribute to the upcoming Star Wars: Episode VII, the builder's technical skill set or a test of Kickstarter's mettle, ambitious projects like this that harbour the least sense often are the most successful. Other bogus crowdfunding projects have made headlines across the world this week, most notably Zack Brown's Potato Salad project. Asking for US$10, Brown received over US$45 000, and is still racking...

  • 5-TILES keyboard review: the Qwerty pretender

    Call me a Neanderthal, but I miss typing on a phone with a physical Qwerty keyboard. Nothing quite beats the tangible feedback a springing key with defined edges provides. BlackBerry's now largely extinct Bold range had the best example but now, although touchscreen smartphones are more powerful than we could ever have anticipated then, typing anything of length on one is an unwanted chore. Enter the third party keyboard app that hopes to kill Qwerty for good -- ETAOI Systems's 5-TILES keyboard, available for Android and likely iOS too in the coming months. Novel and attractive design The self-proclaimed "keyboard designed for...

  • Mystery solved: Sony reveals why the PS4 console was held back at launch

    Sony announced the PS4 20 February 2013 to a frothing crowd in New York, but there was no console in sight and many fans surmised that the only reason for the reveal was to beat Microsoft's Xbox One launch (21 May 2013) to the punch. Where was the console, and why announce the PS4 without it? Sony Computer Entertainment president Andrew House provides answers to these questions, thanks to an exclusive interview from IGN. Why was the PS4 launched before the Xbox One? "That was deliberate," says House. Sony wanted the PS4 information out there so that it could "stake its ground"...

  • I know what you’re thinking: Google Glass, now with mind control

    Google Glass doesn't exactly have a wonderful public image, nor the people who use it. The US$1 000 device has come under some scrutiny for its privacy pervasive nature in a post-Snowden world. But a new appendage may just change this perception, or involuntarily, make it worse. NeuroSky, manufacturers of brainwave harnessing biosensors, had its MindWave Mobile fitted to Google Glass, allowing the wearer to control the Glass using nothing but brain function. While the Glass fits around the ears, the MindWave is mounted on the forehead. No touch, motion or speech is needed at all, just thought. The EEG and Glass...

  • Chromecast screen mirroring now enabled for high-end Android gizmos

    Finally, after much ado, Google has given a select group of Android devices the ability to mirror screens across to Chromecast, an ability that had been touted at this year's Google I/O. This new feature, announced on the Chrome blog, allows specific Android-based phones and tablets to share its screen to Google's Chromecast dongle, granting users the power to watch videos, share pictures or view additional device content on a larger screen. Content will also appear larger but "exactly as you see it on your mobile device", so that potentially includes anything from a 42-inch game of Angry Birds to...

  • Here’s how to build your own killer $500 Xbox One or PS4 gaming PC

    Both the next generation gaming consoles, Sony's PS4 and Microsoft's Xbox One are out and we’ve seen some really interesting performance comparisons. But what if you want a gaming machine that does more than just gaming and media playback? The custom AMD GPUs used in the PS4 and Xbox One are close to a Radeon HD 7870 or an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660 Ti at best. Meaning that none of these consoles can run games at resolutions higher than 1080p, let alone things like 4K and many games on these consoles still run at 720p or 900p. Is it possible?I personally...

  • Indian-made Spice Smart Pulse smartwatch has dual-SIM, tiny battery

    Spice, an Indian manufacturer usually only noted for its smartphones, is trying its hand at something a little different. The Smart Pulse M-9010 is (yet another) smartwatch, but it's massively different in one major aspect -- it has a dual-SIM slot, for making actual phone calls. Up to now, the current breed of Android Wear-specific devices have lacked dedicated SIM card slots, but Spice wants to negate the need for a smartphone altogether with the Smart Pulse. Or, at least, lessen the shock of accidentally leaving it at home. It's much cheaper than most smartphones and indeed smartwatches too as prices...

  • Spot the difference with ‘The Last of Us Remastered’ screenshot comparison

    Here's the skinny on The Last of Us Remastered for PS4. It's going to run 60fps at a 1080p resolution, includes the Left Behind DLC and it launches 30 July. There's been way too much debate regarding how its going to look, so let's lay this to rest: it's going to look amazing. This Korean games site has some of the first still images from The Last of Us Remastered, with Naughty Dog community strategist Arne Meyer confirming the screenshots legitimacy. Videogamer also had a handy PS3 to PS4 screenshot to compare. Click on each image to further ogle each detail, and it...

  • Samsung’s ‘Gear VR’ headset set for September launch [rumour]

    If reports coming from SamMobile are factual, then Samsung will be showcasing its much anticipated Google Cardboard-challenger, dubbed the Gear VR, in September at the IFA 2014 trade show. Speculation abounds following Engadget's leak a few weeks ago, but SamMobile can now "confirm" that the Korean manufacturer is indeed working on a VR headset of its own, and it will be arriving very shortly. In a quickly-blossoming market featuring the likes of Sony's Project Morpheus, Google's DIY-orientated Cardboard and Facebook's Oculus Rift, Samsung also wants a foot in the door before it is slammed shut. Unlike Sony or Oculus's implementation, however,...

  • Alcatel One Touch Pixi review: cheap, cheery and useful

    There’s something refreshing about the Alcatel One Touch Pixi. It’s a feature-rich phone that packs a great deal into its small frame, and by skimping on bells and whistles, it costs about as much as a trip to the supermarket. Indeed, at R550, this is one of the best value buys I can remember reviewing. There’s definitely a market for this sort of smartphone too. For instance, an elderly grandparent – one who’s scared of spending money on technology (ooh, what a dirty word) – will find the Pixi a delight, and since it runs on Android v2.3 (Gingerbread), it’s...