Weekly digest - 2019.34


Gamescom 2019

Here is the list of more interesting games presented during Gamescom:

Android 10

Google has changed the naming convention of their mobile operating system. After years of using alphabet letters, also associated with funny names of sweets, company decided to change the naming convention to numbers.

I was wondering how Google would name the Android after the Z version.  I got the answer sooner than expected 😅 The Android's naming convention was a really cool idea from marketing perspective. But  from practical point of view it was confusing to the users, so I'm surprised that happened now, but overall it is a good decision.

D23 Expo Panel

This week Disney hold its annual conference. This year the main focus was of course on the new streaming service. You can watch the Star Wars segment yourself here.

Star Wars Episode IX: The raise of Skywalker

There is no new news about the movie, similarly to previous movies, Disney waits with the marketing campaign till late September/early October. But we got short new footage and new poster.

The Mandalorian

It looks like The Mandalorian is one of the most important projects for Disney+, so we got a bunch of cool news:

Obi-Wan Kenobi TV Series

Yes! It is happening! During the D23 Kathleen Kennedy and Ewan McGregor officially confirmed that Obi-Wan Kenobi TV Series is coming to Disney+.  So far, we know that all the scripts have been written, and it will begin filming in 2020.

The Clone Wars

Unfortunately we didn't get any new news beside the release window. The last season of the Clone Wars is premiering in February 2020.

Cassian Andor Series

There is no new information about the show. It is currently in preproduction and scheduled to shoot next year.

Other news

Here is the list of other interesting announcements and news from D23:

Spider-Man is leaving MCU

Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige will not produce next Spider-Man movies, which basically means that Spider-Man will no longer be part of the MCU. According to Deadline, the reasoning behind this decision is a dispute between Sony - which holds the rights to the character - and Disney - Marvel’s parent company - over revenue sharing from films.

This is a sad news, because the last 2 Spider-Man movies perfectly tied into the MCU making this universe reacher. According to some rumors the negotiations between Sony and Disney are still in progress, so maybe after current fans outrage, companies will find solution that will make everyone happy.

Weekly digest - 2019.22


Deepfakes becomes real

Researchers from Samsung’s AI Center have figured out a method to train the AI to animate a person's face from an extremely limited dataset, like a single photo. They achieved this by training algorithm for detecting facial features and face landmarks, like shape of the face, eyes, mouth shape, etc. They used 7,000 images of celebrities gathered from VoxCeleb to train the model and achieve realistic results.

What they achieve is really impressive and scary at the same time. I'm afraid that soon we will have problem to tell the difference between what's real and what's fake.

Facebook & cryptocurrency

According to BBC, Facebook plans to launch its own cryptocurrency in 2020. New digital currency, named GlobalCoin, will be launched in 12 countries and it suppose to make money transfers easier for Instagram and WhatsApp users.

This is an interesting approach, and it's completely different from Apple's "traditional banking" route. I'm curious how it will be adopted by users. Maybe, finally, the cryptocurrency money transfers will become widely used.

iOS 13 and macOS 10.15 rumors

One week before WWDC, Guilherme Rambo revealed screenshots of some upcoming iOS 13 features. So far, the following changes will released with new operating system:

  • Dark mode,
  • New toolbar for screenshots editor,
  • Redesigned Reminders app,
  • Find my iPhone and Find my Friends apps are united into one app called Find My.

On the macOS side, we got screenshot of new Music and TV apps.

Those features align with previous rumors about iOS 13 and macOS 10.15, so there is high chance that we will see the rest of anticipated features on Monday.

New iPod Touch

Apple has quietly updated the iPod Touch with new A10 Fusion chip. Beside new CPU, iPod got new version with  256GB of storage. And that's it. This update is strange as Apple didn't even use latest generation of  A11 or A12 chips.

I'm surprised that Apple even bothered to upgrade iPod Touch, but apparently  they are convinced that users need more performance. Maybe they think that people will use iPods to play games, for example from Apple Arcade. Well, iPod Touch, with starting price at $199, is definitely chipper than the iPhone, so they might be people who like mobile games, but cannot afford a new iPhone. In that case, iPod Touch is reasonable choice.


Image credits: Egor Zakharov

Weekly digest - 2019.20


2019 iPhone design

Mark Gurman tweeted a photo of alleged case molds for upcoming iPhones. Those molds align with previous rumors and shows much bigger, square camera bump. The bigger bump could be justified on the next iPhone XS ans XS Max, which are suppose to get 3 rear cameras, but XR model, despite the rumors about having only 2 cameras, also has square bump, almost the same size as XS will have.

Next Star Wars movies

Last week we got confirmation of the next Star Wars trilogy. This week, Bob Iger confirmed the rumors that David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, Games of Thrones show runners, will create next movie.  I'm stoked to see next movies, but looking at the turmoil the last season of Games of Thrones created I'm also a little bit worried.

Beside this, we also got more detailed release dates:

  • Part 1 - 16th December 2022
  • Part 2 - 20th December 2024
  • Part 3 - 18th December 2026

3rd Star Wars TV show

Bob Iger also revealed that during 3 years break from the movies we will get 3 Star Wars TV shows. So far we know about The Mandalorian and Cassian Andor series. The third one was a surprise and becomes an interesting mystery.

App Store Monopoly Lawsuit Against Apple

The U.S. Supreme Court decided to proceed with the class action lawsuit against Apple. The lawsuit was filed in 2011 by some iPhone users who believe that Apple violates federal antitrust laws by requiring apps to be sold only through  the App Store. This allows Apple to collects a 30% cut from all purchases, which leads to inflated prices of the applications.

Long story short, iPhone users believe that apps would be priced lower outside of the App Store, as Apple's 30 percent cut would not be calculated into  prices.

I have mixed filings about this. I agree that 30% cut is a big one and it didn't change since the beginning of the AppStore, but I also doubt that apps would be priced differently outside of the AppStore.  


Image credits: Mark Gurman