Weekly Digest - 2021.02


CES 2021

Due to pandemic, the CES 2021 was different. First of all it was virtual. Second, it was smaller, much smaller. Not many products ware introduced, but couple of them were interesting:

Samsung Galaxy S21 family

Samsung announced the next version of the flagship phone. Here is the spec of the Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra:

  • 6.8-inch AMOLED 120Hz display (1440 x 3200 px),
  • Snapdragon 888,
  • 12 or 16GB of RAM,
  • 128GB, 256GB, and 512GB of Storage,
  • Triple back camera system: 108 MP (wide), 10 MP (telephoto), 12 MP (ultrawide),
  • 40 MP selfie camera,
  • 5000 mAh Battery,
  • Support for S pen,
  • Starting at $1199.

Return of the King?

According to Ming-Chi Kuo, next MacBook Pro might return to its glorious days. If rumors are true, the new MacBook Pro will get not only the ARM processor, but also new form factor, and new display. The TouchBar will be gone, and the MagSafe will return with additional ports. This is too good to be true.

Lucasfilm Games

Lucasfilm announced that all future Star Wars games will be released under the Lucasfilm Games brand. It looks like, EA lost their exclusivity right to Star Wars games. Bethesda is working on Indiana Jones game, and Ubisoft is making an open world Star Wars game. Despite the fact EA lost exclusivity rights, it's still working on the new Star Wars games, including sequel to the Jedi Fallen Order.

Wikipedia anniversary

Wikipedia turned 20. Yeah, It's hard to believe, but Wikipedia is helping us for two decades now. It definitely helped me when I was a student, so I would like to thank everyone who contributed to this awesome project.

Weekly Digest - 2020.50


Cyberpunk 2077 released

CD Project Red, after 9 years of development, finally released the Cyberpunk 2077. First reviews are very positive. CDP Red once again delivered very solid game, although it is far from being perfect. The game is hunted by many little bugs. Bugs are not  unexpected as the game is huge, but they make the  experience less pleasant.  Overall it looks like Cyberpunk is solid game and it somehow met the expectations.

Starship launch

Space X has performed a test flight of the Starship. The launch was verifying following scenario:

  1. ✅ Launch Starship,
  2. ✅ Achieve altitude of 12.5 KM,
  3. ✅ Shutdown engines and rotate rocket on it's belly,
  4. ✅  Fall free,
  5. ✅ Turn on engines and rotate the rocket to the vertical position,
  6. ❌ Land on the ground.

The test  ran perfectly until the landing. The pressure in fuel cells was too low, which resulted in higher touch down speed than anticipated, which ultimately caused an explosion.

Despite the fact, that Starship is gone, the test was successful.

AirPods Max

Apple announce AirPods Max - the over-ear noise-canceling headphones. Here are selected features:

  • Active Noise Cancellation,
  • Spatial audio with dynamic head tracking,
  • Audio Sharing,
  • Digital Crown for controlling volume and playback,
  • Magnetic ear cups,
  • Apple H1 chip, in each ear cup, for fast connecting with Apple devices and device switching,
  • Sensors in each cup can detect whether they are placed on a user’s head and pause playback when removed,
  • Bluetooth 5 compatible,
  • 20h of battery life,
  • Come in five colors: space gray, silver, sky blue, green, and pink.

AirPods Max  will be available from December 15th for $549.

New ARM macs in 2021

According to latest rumors, Apple is working on new 32-core chip, that will be shipped with upcoming iMacs and 16-inch MacBook Pros. Looking at performance of the current M1 chip, it is something worth waiting for.

Apple Fitness+

Apple also announced that Fitness+ will launch on December 14th. The workout service will be available only in Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, the UK, and the US  for $9.99 per month or $79.99 per year.

Disney plans

Disney have unveiled their plans for the foreseeable future.

Star Wars:

  • Star Wars: Andor (TV); 2022,
  • Obi-Wan Kenobi (TV); 2022,
  • Ahsoka (TV),
  • Rangers of the New Republic (TV),
  • Star Wars: The Bad Batch (TV),
  • The Acolyte (TV),
  • Star Wars: Lando (TV),
  • Droid Story (TV),
  • Star Wars: Visions (TV),
  • Rogue Squadron (Movie); 12.2023,
  • Untitled Taika Waititi Film; 12.2025.

Marvel:

  • WandaVision (TV); 15.01.2021,
  • Falcon and the Winter Soldier (TV); 03.2020,
  • Loki (TV); 05.2021,
  • Hawkeye; 2021,
  • She-Hulk (TV),
  • Ironheart (TV),
  • What-if? (TV),
  • Moon Knight (TV),
  • Miss Marvel (TV),
  • Secret Invasion (TV),
  • Armor Wars (TV),
  • Black Panther 2 (Movie), 07.2022,
  • Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania (Movie),
  • Fantastic Four (Movie).

Image credits: Apple

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Mandalorian Season 2

It's finally here. Mando is on a quest of uniting the Child with its kind. And  if rumors are true, he will meet interesting characters along the way.  First episode started very strong. If the rest of the episodes are on the same level,  we will have superb season ahead of us. This is the way.

SpaceX 100 successful launches

SpaceX reached 100 successful launches with latest Starlink mission. It all started in September 2008 with  flight of a Falcon 1 booster.  Twelve years later, SpaceX has a fleet of reusable Falcon 9 and Falcon Heavy rockets, that not only sent cargo into space, but also humans.

If everything will go according to SpaceX's plans, then we might see 200th launch within next 3 years.


Image credits: Lucasfilm

Weekly Digest - 2020.38


Apple Event

Apple held an online event and introduced couple of new things:

Apple Watch Series 6

  • It is evolution of Series 5,
  • New S6 chip and U1 chip,
  • New sensor containing Blood Oxygen Sensor With ECG,
  • Available from $399 on this Friday.

Apple Watch SE

  • Comes in 40mm & 44mm of size,
  • Retina display (without always on feature),
  • S5 chip,
  • Second-generation optical heart sensor (without ECG),
  • Available from $279 on this Friday.

Apple Fitnes+

This is another service from Apple. This one, as name suggests, focuses on fitnes and exercising. It integrates with Apple Watch, and offers guided workouts. Apple Fitness+ will be available for the iPhone, iPad, and Apple TV for $10/ month, or $80/ year.

Apple One

Apple combined all it services into bundles and called it Apple One:

  • Individual ($14.95/ month) - Apple Music, Apple TV+, Apple Arcade, and 50GB iCloud storage,
  • Family ($19.95 / month, shared with six family members) - ‌Apple Music‌, ‌Apple TV‌+, ‌Apple Arcade‌, and 200GB ‌iCloud‌ storage,
  • Premier ($29.95 / month, shared with six family members) - ‌Apple Music‌, ‌Apple TV‌+, ‌Apple Arcade‌, 2TB ‌iCloud‌ storage, Apple News+, and Apple Fitness+.

iPad 8th Gen

Entry level iPad finally got upgrade:

  • 10.2-inch Retina display,
  • Apple's A12 Bionic chip,
  • Supports the first-generation Apple Pencil,
  • Support Smart Keyboard
  • Starts from $329.

iPad Air

Also iPad Air got an update, and on paper it came much closer to a Pro version:

  • 10.9-Inch Retina display,
  • Apple's A14 Bionic chip,
  • Touch ID built into the power button,
  • 12-megapixel rear camera,
  • Supports the second-generation Apple Pencil,
  • Support Magic Keyboard,
  • USB-C connector,
  • Starts from $599.

PlayStation 5 launch date and pricing

During an online event, Sony finally revealed that the next-gen console will arrive on November 12 in North America, Australia, New Zealand, and South Korea.  For the rest of the world it will be available from November 19th.

The PlayStation 5 will cost $499.99 for the standard version and $399.99 for the PS5 Digital Edition.


Image credits: Apple

Weekly Digest - 2020.04


Photos of the Xbox Series X leaked online

Photos of the next-gen console has were posted on NeoGAF and Twitter. It’s unclear how legitimate those photos are, but if this they are, it's the first time we can see the console with all the ports:

  • HDMI Out,
  • 1x front USB Type-A port,
  • 2x rear USB Type-A ports,
  • Ethernet port,
  • Optical port
  • Diagnostic port

Microsoft has not commented on the leak, so we will have to wait, probably till E3 2020, for official news.

iPhone 12 in new sizes?

According to report from Macotakara, this year iPhones will have new dimensions:

  • 5.4-inch model will have a height that is midway between the iPhone SE and iPhone 8,
  • 6.1-inch model will be midway between the iPhone 11 and 11 Pro Max,
  • 6.7-inch model will be slightly taller than the iPhone 11 Pro Max.  Also, it will be thinner, 7.4mm instead of 8.1mm.

Disney+ in Western Europe

Disney announced that its streaming service, Disney+, will launch in Europe on March 24th.  It will be available in selected countries:

  • Ireland,
  • France,
  • Germany,
  • Italy,
  • Spain,
  • Austria,
  • Switzerland,
  • United Kingdom.

Belgium, Portugal, Norway, Sweden, Denmark and Iceland will get access this summer. Unfortunately, Eastern Europe will have to wait till the first half of 2021.

Google I/O 2020 announced

Google revealed that its annual developer conference will take place from May 12th to May 14th. The conference dates were reveled through a puzzle game.

It's still unclear what Google is going to announce during the conference, but the preview of a new Android is a safe bet.


Image credits: NeoGAF