In the tech world, a lot happens in a week. So much news goes on, in fact, that it’s almost impossible for mere mortals with real lives to keep track of everything. That’s why we’ve compiled a quick and dirty list of the top 10 tech stories from this week. Everything from Samsung’s huge Galaxy View tablet to Morocco’s plan to build the world’s largest solar power plant — it’s all here.
The rumors were true — Samsung actually made a 18.4-inch tablet, and it’s called the Galaxy View. The massive tablet could be considered more of a portable TV than an actual tablet, given its size and dimensions. Samsung revealed initial details in a press release on its blog, and shortly followed up with availability and pricing. The View sports a huge 18.4-inch screen with a Full HD resolution of 1,920 x 1,080 pixels. Since it’s meant to function like a TV that you bring from room to room in your home, it has a handle on the back and a built-in stand. It’ll cost $600 when it goes on sale November 6. Here’s our hands on with the device.
After a dismal month which saw the steady escalation of a crisis over rigged diesel emission tests, Volkswagen has lost its crown to Toyota as the world’s biggest automaker. The Japanese car giant announced it’d sold 7.49 million vehicles from January to the end of September, slightly more than VW’s count of 7.43 million for the same period. VW had led the pack for the first six months of the year, Bloomberg reported. The German car maker’s emissions-cheating antics first hit the headlines in mid-September, suggesting the crisis will have had little impact on the latest sales figures. However, recent growth in a number of global markets, including China, could now be hit as a result of the scandal, allowing Toyota to consolidate its position in the coming months as the world’s top car seller.
ChromeOS has been a success in many respects. While not universally loved, and still limited compared to Windows or OS X, the simple operating system has a small, loyal following, and laptops based off it often appear on Amazon’s top-selling list. Yet that’s not enough to earn it a stay of execution, as the Wall Street Journal reports that insiders say Chrome OS will soon get the axe. It apparently will be folded into Android next year, and Chromebooks will no longer be sold as of 2017.
Pirates beware: ISPs may soon be legally obligated to reveal your identity, thanks to the Trans-Pacific Partnership. Wikileaks this week published a leaked copy of the intellectual property chapter of the sprawling agreement, which includes a mandate: Every nation must set up a way for copyright owners to find out the identity of copyright violators. “Each Party shall provide procedures…enabling a copyright owner who has made a legally sufficient claim of copyright infringement to obtain expeditiously from an Internet Service Provider information in the provider’s possession identifying the alleged infringer,” the leaked document states.
Twitch has expanded its gaming-focused streaming service as part of a newly-established partnership with Adobe, introducing a new “Creative” category that feature streamed content from artists, musicians, and other creators. The company has additionally partnered with Janson Media in order to stream a marathon session of Bob Ross’s classic public television series, The Joy of Painting.
Next page: 5 more tech stories you might have missed this week
The natural fit between the Earth’s deserts and humanity’s growing interest in solar power is obvious, but the resource has still been largely untapped, until now. Ouarzazate is a city in the completely landlocked desert region of Morocco, but you’ve probably seen it before in movies and TV shows like Lawrence of Arabia, The Mummy, and perhaps most famously, Game of Thrones. But aside from the fictional glory of the Seven Kingdoms, Ouarzazate is also about to become the home to the largest consolidated solar power plant in the world. The enormous power plant will focus entirely on renewable energy, so that through a combination of solar, hydro, and wind power, Morocco will source more than half of its energy from renewable sources by the year 2020.
As Amazon continues to tinker with its Prime Air drone in the hopes to one day use the machine to deliver packages to customers, Walmart has said it too wants to use the technology for the same purpose. In a request made to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) on Monday, Walmart said that it also wanted to use drones for other purposes such as checking warehouse inventories, Reuters reported. Like Amazon, Walmart is already conducting indoor drone tests, though instead of developing its own flying machine, the retail giant is using Phantom 3 and S900 copters built by China-based drone maker DJI.
It’s been a long wait for fans, but Adele’s first new single since 2012’s Skyfall released on Friday. Out of sight (or hearing, in this case) usually means out of mind, but clearly no one forgot about the British songstress. After crushing records with Hello, Adele is set to perform on the November 21 episode of Saturday Night Live, hosted by Matthew McConaughey. SNL struck while the iron was hot, locking down a musical guest who has been burning up the Internet. Vevo announced that in the first 24 hours after Hello — the first single from her upcoming album, 25 — was released, the distributor’s video on YouTube was viewed more than 27 million times.
The U.S. is worried over Russian submarine activity around undersea data cables, reports the New York Times, leading to concerns that Putin may attempt to physically sever the communication networks. There is no evidence yet that Russia has tampered with cables according to U.S. officials, but they are wary of Russian presence around these cables, especially in areas that are hard to reach. It’s not uncommon for undersea Internet cables to be damaged, whether it’s by natural disasters or parts of vessels like anchors, but they can be fixed relatively easily. However, the U.S.’s main concerns is over potential tampering with data cables that are much deeper and thus harder to reach and fix.
Yahoo published the results of its first live stream NFL broadcast, Sunday’s game between the Jacksonville Jaguars and the Buffalo Bills from London’s Wembley Stadium. The broadcast is part of a new deal by the NFL, allowing Yahoo to broadcast one game exclusively from the regular season. The stream was delivered to 33.6 million devices, with 15.2 million people around the world viewing the broadcast. The average views per minute were 2.3 million, and 33 percent of the audience was watching from outside of the United States.
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