EA released a new Star Wars game called Battlefront II. One game mechanic got the Internet (represented by Reddit), into a roar: in-game micro-transactions that open random loot boxes. Not only were they expensive, but they also influenced how well you did in multi-player mode, which seemed unfair and greedy on EA’s part. With all the criticism, EA pulled the loot boxes at the last minute, but it begs the question: what is the true cost of a game? Why does EA feel it’s necessary to charge micro-transactions for performance? Is that OK? Or are they going too far?
Uber started testing their driverless cars in San Francisco last week. It turns out that they didn’t get proper permission from the DMV, who sent Uber a nice message asking them to stop. Uber didn’t listen and the justice department got involved. This is Uber’s MO: seek forgiveness instead of permission. The rest of the stories, and their links are below.
This week John Glenn passes away. So we talk about going to space. And how Magic Leap lied about their product. How how Pebble will no longer be on anyone’s wrists. Wow – that sounds much darker than the show really was. We finish off talking about the future of shopping and VR. All the show notes are below.
So far podcasting has been free and open. However, some would like to see Apple play more central role to allow things like better analytics and in-show purchases. As long as it doesn’t ruin the medium, it should be OK. We also talk about games, graphics, 3D printing, VR and so much more! Check out all the links and details below.
It’s season 6! And we’ve got some amazing predictions for you. We start with “Tier 1” companies like Apple, Google, Facebook, Amazon & Microsoft. For each we talk about their products and other big tech related activities they’ll make. We think you’ll find it really helpful for thinking about how the year will shape up.
This week we talk about Star Wars… A lot actually. We also dive into the world of self-driving cars, gaming, monopolies, and the future of medicine. All in all, it’s a solid show. Enjoy!
Standalone apps were all the rage at the beginning of the year. Now they’re suddenly dying. Virtual reality seems poised to be all the rage next year. Will they also experience a quick death (like the hoverboard), or will they be around for the long-haul?
Everything on the internet was once expected to be free (thanks Google). Then we started paying for songs (thanks Apple) and books (thanks Amazon). Soon it became normal to pay for things online. Then Netflix showed us that monthly subscriptions can be massively convenient for customers and super profitable for companies. It seems that all the major players are getting in on the monthly subscription goodness. But is it setting them up for a backlash when the economy turns and people start looking for ways to cut their monthly expenses?
The more things change, the more they stay the same. Great artists steal. It’s like deja vu all over again. That seems to be the same after a 3rd set of hardware announcements that basically seems to only change the company name. Don’t get us wrong. Microsoft’s interpretation is very compelling, but it all seems too familiar. See below for all the links to each article.
Did you know that LOLs are on the way out? haha.
WeChat is huge and chances are you’re not using it because it’s huge in China. What makes this app interesting is that it breaks many of the current rules that US app makers follow.
Google is now part of Alphabet. It’s both a fascinating name, and a confusing name. Same goes for the structure. Hopefully this will make it easier for us to predict what Google is going to do.
Disneyland and Walt Disney World are adding a Star Wars land, to which we declare: about time! Seriously, this is going to be awesome. Just as awesome is the work that ILM is doing to bring VR to the professional movie level. As the camera guy who made bullet time says, he wants to make the Matrix.
People still think Apple is making a car. James still thinks they’re wrong.
HTC is worth less than the cash they have. That’s not a good sign and we expect something big to happen to them within the year.
Foursquare is still around, BTW.
Baseball is starting to experiment with computer aided batter’s boxes instead of umpires. This is a fascinating proposition that requires some fundamental answers about the purpose of the game. Check out the South Park episode right below that link.
Samsung creates the first 16TB SSD… which is just crazy.
And finally, if you’re on AT&T, check out their new shared data plans because they just got better.
Enjoy the show!