ESPN to Show Drone Racing

ESPN has often shown more than unusual choices when it comes to its schedule, with them beginning to show the DOTA 2 tournaments two years ago, even when their boss said the eSports were not a sport. In the latest change to their schedule, ESPN is looking to show drone racing within the year.

Announcing a partnership with the international drone racing association (IDRA) on Wednesday, ESPN is looking to stream drone races online starting off in August with the US National Drone Racing Championship in New York. Streamed via ESPN3 live, the footage will then be edited to a one-hour special to be streamed on one of ESPNS’s TV channels.

Unlike with other sports, drone racing can be viewed from two perspectives, both the view following the drone and the view that its pilot gets to see, provided via a first person camera mounted on the front. With ESPN also carrying the 2016 World Drone Racing Champion in Hawaii in October, ESPN accredited this uptake to the “unprecedented rise in popularity” of the event, even saying it may go alongside NASCAR and Formula 1 as the “next behemoth racing sport”.

With drone racing having its first champion courtesy of the Drone Prix that was hosted in Dubai earlier this year, drone racing contests are appearing all around the world as people look to race their drones and show off their skills as the next generation of racers!

Inateck Headphones Roundup Review

Introduction


Picking the right headphones can be quite tricky, but with a great range of versatile and reasonably priced headphones in their range, it seems the Inateck has got you covered. Today we’ll be taking a look at three of their latest sets, all of which come targeted at a slightly different part of the market. Hopefully, we’ll be able to help guide you in which ones offer the best performance, features and value for money to suit your own needs.

Inateck produces a huge range of products, such as mobile accessories, USB hubs, hard drive docks, laptop bags and so much more. They’ve had great reviews in the past and their brand continues to grow in popularity, so I’m looking forward to testing out these headphones today. In the eTeknix office, we have their new Aries Dynamic Driver In-Ear Headphones (BH1101), the Taurus Wireless Sport Headset (BH1001) and the more affordable Wood In-ear Hi-Fi Headphone BH1105’s. They all have some a little unique about them too, so it’ll be interesting to see which  ones offer up the best options and performance overall given their respective price ranges and target audiences.

Aries Dynamic Driver Headphones

“Built in modern aluminum-housings and classic premium genuine wood, Inateck Aries BH1101 likes more like a work of art. 22 cored anti-oxidized cooper wire can better extend its service life. Furthermore, the PU Aluminum Foil cable makes it sturdy and tangle free.”

Wood In-ear Hi-Fi Headphone

“What is the most important thing to headphones? A well-rounded and clear sound! BH1105 is not only superbly balanced but also offers awesome bass, trebles and ear protection. The Zebra Wood pumps up your sound to an orchestral-like level. Bring a concert with you wherever you go.”

Taurus Wireless Sport Headphones

“Inateck Sport Bluetooth headset-BH1001 provides a comfortable, curved fit. Its magnetic design allows the two ear buds attract with each other, forming a circle that could hang on your neck to avoid falling down or losing when you finished exercising.”

The packaging on the headsets/headphones is pretty simple, with a minimal waste box and some stylish representations on the front.

Around the back, quite simple again and a few major specifications on the Aries and Taurus boxes.

Super Bowl 50 Sets a New CBS Streaming Record

The Super Bowl is one of the most popular sporting events worldwide and continues to attract very large audiences. This year’s event was hosted at Levi’s Stadium in the San Francisco Bay Area, and contested between the Carolina Panthers and Denver Broncos. According to broadcaster CBS, the average cost of a 30-second commercial during the game was a staggering $5 million. Unlike the majority of NFL games, the Super Bowl manages to create interest from new viewers outside of the US who aren’t overly versed with the rules. Perhaps, they want to see the half time show, adverts or simply intrigued by the spectacle. As a Brit, I don’t really follow American football, but the Super Bowl is always an interesting watch!

In terms of media coverage, the Super Bowl 50 was a resounding success and managed to attract a “record audience” streaming the game. Unfortunately, there’s no specific numbers from CBS to judge how many people tuned in, but it’s clearly broke last year’s figure of 800,000 viewers per minute. Even if you really dislike American football, this is an extremely impressive and exemplifies the importance of digital media. Part of this success is down to CBS encouraging streaming through various devices including the Apple TV, Roku Stick and Xbox One. It’s not unreasonable to think that streaming could take over from traditional TV broadcasts in the next 10-15 years. Technical problems during the stream might deter people from using it in the future, but organisers are becoming more aware of how to build the correct infrastructure for more viewers.

In an ideal world, I’d love to know the exact figures, because the Super Bowl provides an extreme example of consumers adopting streaming on a mass scale. Still, TV will reign supreme for some time, but people are now more open to streaming content online.

Image courtesy of TheAtlantic.com

Sensible Soccer Reboot Launched on Kickstarter

Sensible Soccer’s arcade physics and frantic pace proved to be a magnificent formula which holds up remarkably well today. The game’s laughably unrealistic speed made each multiplayer match an action-packed encounter and released on the Atari ST, Amiga and PC. In the modern gaming industry, realism is at the heart of yearly football titles. However, the spiritual successor to Sensible Soccer has just been pitched on Kickstarter under the name, Sociable Soccer . Here’s a brief snippet about the project in the developer’s own words:

“An instantly playable football game for football fans all over the world, designed and directed by Jon Hare, the man behind Sensible World of Soccer, the best-selling football game of the 1990s.”

“The game will feature over 500 National, Club and Custom teams with over 10,000 researched player names. Team names, player names and kits used in game will be similar to the majority of popular titles on the market and fully editable.”

“Compete for over 30 single player trophies, and create DIY competitions for up to 8 players on a single machine. The game will be completed by the end of 2016 on PC, Steam, XBox One and Playstation 4.”

Please note, the current graphics are from a very early build and should be vastly improved as development progresses. The project requires £300,000 which is fairly reasonable and attainable given the huge popularity of Sensible Soccer. Although, it’s difficult to know if the golden era of arcade sports games have passed, and people just want to experience an authentic simulation.

Crucial Ballistix Sport 2400MHz 32GB (4x8GB) Quad Channel Memory Kit Review

Introduction


When purchasing a computer, RAM generally is the last component that you tend to think about and when you do come to think of it; quantity is the only real factor you tend to consider. That is if you don’t have a colour scheme or a limited amount of DIMM slots to accommodate RAM. Since the early days of computing, RAM has come a long way, the most recent format DDR has seen four iterations. The latest being DDR4, which has surpassed DDR3 as the new mainstream RAM type and has introduced memory speeds up to and surpassing 3333+MHz.

Crucial are one of the big players in the RAM game, providing us with a solid performance at a more affordable price. Today’s kit is the Ballistix Sport 2400MHz, one of Crucial’s cheaper options on the market, providing us with minimal heat spreader size and design and the base unit to adopt the use of black PCB. Let’s see how this set compares in today’s review.

Specifications

Packaging and Accessories

The packaging is almost exactly the same design as the rest of the current Crucial RAM range. A basic clamshell style case with small amounts of information on the single sticker on the front; allowing for maximum exposure for the DIMM’s within.

A Closer Look

Something that the Ballistix Sport range is understated. The black PCB and gold fingers are a nice contrast with a rather small silver heat sink on either side of the DIMM; Personally, I think a splash of gold could have been added to the corners and the logos.

RAM is an often overlooked part of the system, but it’s always nice to see how it looks when installed into a motherboard. Here is the set installed into our base motherboard, the ASUS RAMPAGE V X99. The Ballistix Sport kit fits in well with the colour scheme of our base motherboard.

Cougar Sport Orange 300M Optical Gaming Mouse Review

Introduction


The latest Cougar gaming mouse is here at last! We’ve already reviewed a few Cougar peripherals here at eTeknix, such as the 600M mouse, 200k mouse and keyboard combo, 600K and 700K keyboard reviews. With so many products in the last year alone, I’m happy to say that Cougar is quickly becoming one of my favourite peripheral manufacturers and that’s a trend I hope to see continue with our review of their latest product, the 300M optical gaming mouse.

The 300M takes its inspiration from the classic IntelliMouse shape, one that has proven popular with gamers and PC users in general for many years. It comes with seven programmable buttons, three profiles, a 16.8 million colour LED and a range of funky and bright colours to choose from. The hardware sounds good too, with a trusty ADNS-3090 optical sensor, 1ms response time and Omron gaming switches; that’s nothing crazy overall, but it certainly ticks enough boxes to make this mouse attractive to both gamers and day-to-day desktop users alike.

The packaging is nice and tidy, showing a good image of the mouse as well as a quick rundown of the main hardware specifications.

Around the back, you’ll find details of the UIX system and buttons, but we’ll take a closer look at each of those in a few minutes.

There’s pretty much nothing extra included in the box, just a hard-wired mouse and the user manual; not that you need much else of course.

The cable comes with a durable black braided cable, which looks great and should improve overall lifespan of the cable.

The 300M is really nicely designed, although that’s hardly much credit to Cougar, as the IntelliMouse shape is something we’ve seen virtually ever manufacturer copy over the years. This is no bad thing of course, it’s a good size and shape to compliment most people’s hands and that’s exactly what you want.

The black and orange looks pretty cool in my opinion, others may disagree. There’s a pair of switches down the left side of the mouse, with long buttons to make them easy to access with your thumb.

The finish on the 300M is pretty slick, with a soft grippy rubber that provides excellent grip, despite the fact it looks and feels silky smooth. This kind of finish is also great for maintenance, as it’s easy to clean and difficult to scratch.

There’s a nice rubber-gripped scroll wheel which colour matches the side panels of the mouse, as well as a programmable button which is set to DPI toggle by default.

As you can see, the 300M ergonomics are designed for right-hand use.

The base of the mouse has two absolutely massive slipmats, that’s a better finished that most other mice. This means that the 300K glides like a cloud in a breeze on virtually any gaming surface, especially so thanks to the lightweight design of the mouse in general.

The seventh mouse button is tucked away on the base, perfect for using as a profile toggle, or DPI changer for those who don’t like having such a button within accidental pressing range mid-game.

Forza Motorsport 6 Coming September 15th

It’s day one of E3, one of the most popular gaming events that takes place during the year. The event is a week-long and we hope it brings some amazing news!

Today, at the E3 event, Forza Motorsport 6 was announced. We’ve know it has been coming for a while now but they revealed it officially and in the flesh today.

Above is the release trailer that was shown at E3, the game will include a 24 car multiplayer so you can race against your friends and family.There will be a destructible environment that looks to use dynamic physics to throw items such as tires across the track. There will be 26 destinations in the game and a whopping 450 cars too. Forza 6 follows the great Forza Horizon 2, which was made by Playground Games. Turn 10 are going to take responsibility for this release.

ArsTechnica said “Turn 10 doesn’t bother programing in “zero to sixty” times for the cars in its games, because the right number almost always emerges from the physics and the simulation. Greenawalt said the same is true for racing in the wet. “Any one track might have tens and tens of surfaces, so instead of looking at what a lap time should look like in the rain, we just make sure that the coefficient of friction is correct for all the surface types and the lap time comes,” he said. “Dark and wet [simulation] came out of Turn 10 living in the woods,” Hartman added with a touch of humor.”

Above are some pictures of the new, stunning game. What do you think of the graphics? let us know in the comments!

Thank you to The Verge for providing us with this information

Images courtesy of Ars Technica

Racing Drones Could Be the Sport of the Future

The crowd at East Grinstead would have been a strange sight, most people are wearing plastic goggles with long antennas sticking up, ignoring their surroundings and staring out into what looks like empty space. The new race of cyborgs? No! it’s Just Drone racers!

Despite this, they all act like a crowd at a football match, letting out sighs of oohs and aahs in unison, responding to some unseen action; much like the little green aliens in Toy Story. Then, all of a sudden a small drone skitters out of the trees on their right, crashing through the brushes before landing in a spray of dirt and leaves.

This is the new and intriguing world of  drone racing, as drones become an increasingly mainstream phenomenon, racing leagues have popped up around the world. Anyone who takes it seriously — pilot or spectator — doesn’t watch their craft from a distance, but instead uses mounted cameras and special video goggles to see the world from their drone’s perspective, also known as first-person racing or FPV.

The course at East Grinstead is 100 meters long and is rather rural, It runs through a stretch of woodland on a steep hillside. The course is so narrow they can’t race several drones at once so instead, use a timing system to take part in time trials. Each Pilot pays £10 to enter and gets four laps around the track and the winner takes the pot.

Sounds good right! Get yourself a drone and take yourself to East Grinstead and give it a go!

Thank you to TheVerge for providing us with this information

Image courtesy of TheVerge

Crucial Showcase its Latest Memory Products @ Computex 2015

Computex 2015 – Memory is one of the few technology sectors that take a massive leap every few years; once a new standard is released, it can take a few months or even years for manufacturers to reap the full potential out of a memory product line. Take DDR3, for example, that was released with speeds up to 1600MHz, then 1866MHz was released and lately 2133MHz has become the norm with DDR4 taking off from there. With the recent announcement that that new Intel Skylake enthusiast processor can support DDR4 memory, we are likely to see the DDR4 standard explored in a much greater way in the upcoming months.

A quick look after the Crucial stand and you are bombarded with quick snippets of information regarding memory and how it has progressed over the years.

We look forward to bringing you a review on the Crucial Ballistix Tracer memory as soon as possible after Computex. We will keep you updated with any news and events from the rest of Computex.

Crucial Announces Ballistix DDR4 16GB Performance Memory

Crucial is well known for their memory and storage drives, but this time it’s the memory that we’ll talk a little about. Crucial just announced the release of Ballistix DDR4 16GB performance memory with various heat-sink configurations.

The new modules are perfect for gamers and enthusiasts who deal with content creation, virtual machines, RAM drives, and memory-intensive applications. The new modules are using Micron’s new 8Gb DDR4 component technology to offer up these high-density DDR4 memory modules.

With the recent release of these high-capacity memory modules with 16GB per module, home users can now create systems with 128GB total memory capabilities that otherwise was reserved for server grade systems. The modules are compatible with the latest Intel X99 platforms and support XMP 2.0 profiles for easy setup.

“This density of memory module will start to become broadly available in the desktop space with our new 8Gb-based Ballistix DDR4 16GB modules,” said Jeremy Mortenson, worldwide DRAM product marketing manager, Crucial. “We anticipate that our new modules and component densities will enable smaller form factors and the next generation of computers to have capacities that were traditionally limited to the server or high-end desktop space.”

Ballistix DDR4 16GB memory is expected to ship in late July as Ballistix Sport, Ballistix Tactical, and Ballistix Elite. The 16GB modules will be available single or in kits up to 128GB and come backed by a limited lifetime warranty.

Crucial Ballistix Sport 2400MHz Quad Channel DDR4 16GB Memory Kit Review

Introduction


Memory, the most vital part of any computer that gets overlooked the most. There’s not a lot to say about RAM apart from its expensive and very confusing. DDR4, the newest iteration of RAM is currently the fastest version of the consumer RAM, with speeds exceeding 3333MHz.

Crucial are one of the big players in the RAM game, providing us with solid performance at a more affordable price. Today’s kit is the Ballistix Sport 2400MHz, one of Crucial’s cheaper sets, providing us with minimal heatsinks and the base unit to use a black PCB. Let’s see how this set compares to the likes of Corsair, G-Skill and our base 32GB Crucial DDR4 set.

Specifications

Packaging and Accessories

We won’t dwell on the packaging too much as it is very plain and simple. Ffour modules neatly packed into a small rectangular box. This kit is a quad-channel variety so each module is 4GB in size.

A Closer Look

The Ballistix Sport kit looks very understated. A very slimline heatsink panel on each side. Such a minimalistic design which I think might put some off due to looking a little “cheap”. Hopefully that is not the case with the performance.

Crucial Ballistix Sport LT 16GB 2400MHz Quad Channel DDR4 Memory Kit Review

Introduction


With every new DDR memory release comes a decline in operating voltage and a decrease in heat output. In the transition from DDR2 to DDR3 and now DDR4, we’ve seen voltages drop and the need for large memory heatsinks are no longer necessary. This allows memory brands to release high-performance memory kits in compact low profile form factors that require minimal cooling. Crucial Ballistix Sport LT is a great example of this – it boasts high frequency yet it still has a low profile design making it ideal for use in compact system builds and with large tower heatsinks that are definitely going to be necessary to cool some of Intel’s swanky new Haswell-E Core i7 5XXX processors.

2400MHz sits on the higher end of the consumer DDR3 kits, as a result we should expect to see some excellent performance from this new Crucial 2400MHz DDR4 kit but the real question is: how well can most applications take advantage of the improved memory architecture? Let’s find out in today’s review.

Specifications

Packaging and Accessories

Packaging is very boring here, a simple clip case displaying two modules with a very small amount, but useful information.

A Closer Look

Crucial seem to have taken the original SPORT memory kit design and added a lip to the upper edge, which hugs the top of the PCB and meet the other side at the top.

Apple Watch Edition AppleCare+ Plan Will Cost $999

The $10,000 and up Apple Watch Edition will have the AppleCare+ plan set at $999, this will extend the warranty from 2 years to 3 years. Buyers will get a dedicated setup hotline and two years of 24/7 support with two accidental damage incidents covered in that time; people who buy the plan will have that for three years.

For the Watch Sport and the Apple Watch the standard coverage gets the buyers 90 days of phone support and a one year limited hardware warranty. The Watch Sport AppleCare+ will cost $59 and the Apple Watch version will cost $79. The AppleCare+ will get the buyers two years of phone support and coverage for two accidental damage incidents. Pre-orders for the watches starts on April 10th and it should be interesting to see if the demand is there since the reception of the product hasn’t been too great.

Source: PCWorld

Get Your Old Rig Gaming Ready on a Tight Budget

Introduction


Have you been looking at the latest graphics cards, then looking at your own PC and thinking you’ve got a gutless gaming rig? I know the feeling, the new cards can be very tempting, at least until you check your bank balance and remember you’re not rich. High-end hardware is great, but do you really need a $1000 Titan X to enjoy your favourite games? Nope. If you’re thinking that your current system is a little outdated, that you need to upgrade the whole thing to be able to enjoy the latest games, you’re wrong and I’m going to prove it.

Now I will admit, if you have a good bit of money saved up to replace your entire rig, go for it, it’ll be awesome. However, if your budget is limited and your system needs a new lease of life, we’re going to see how much improvement you can get for a modest investment of just £300 (approx $440 US)!

I’ll be starting out with a rather humble system, which features the hardware listed below, which I think you’ll agree is pretty unremarkable by today’s standards. The motherboard is an overclocking board, but we’ll be running at stock clocks to help better simulate an under powered system, it just happens to be the most suitable board I had at the time.

  • Dual-core i3 4330 3.5GHz
  • MSI GTX 560 Ti 1GB graphics card
  • ADATA 8GB 1600Mhz Memory 11-11-11-28
  • Gigabyte GA-Z97N Motherboard
  • Western Digital 500GB Hard Drive 7200RPM
  • Silverstone Kublai KL06 Chassis
  • Seasonic 600W 80+ Bronze PSU
  • CoolerMaster Gemini Low-Profile CPU cooler

I’ll be upgrading the system with the following components, then benchmarking it in some popular applications to compare how much the performance improves.

All prices correct at the time of writing.

As you can see, there’s nothing exciting about this system. Perhaps a couple of years ago, a system of this specification may have raised an eyebrow a little, but perhaps not so much today.

No SSD here, just a standard and rather well aged mechanical hard drive, so expect boot times to be enough to go and make a coffee.

The GPU has had a hard life, it’s actually the one we used to use for chassis reviews, so there’s are a few bumps and scrapes, but it’s still in perfect working order.

I’ve already benchmarked the system with this setup and we’ll get to the scores for that very soon, so let’s install our new Ballistix Sport memory, which has tighter timings than the old kit, it won’t be much, but it should give us that extra edge for very little investment.

The Crucial BX100, an absolutely incredible bargain at under £60 ($88 US); this will no doubt have a huge impact on the systems performance.

I’ll be using the new ASUS GTX 960 STRIX 2GB card for my upgrade.

It’s certainly one of the nicest GTX 960’s on the market right now and while I’m expecting great performance gains, it’s also aesthetically pleasing, so should provide a nice visual upgrade too!

The card also features more video outputs than the 560 Ti, giving you greater connectivity options.

It also features a nice back plate and only required a single 6-pin power connector vs the dual 6-in required by the GTX 560 Ti.

 

New components all installed, which only took about ten minutes to get them out of their respective boxes and plugged in.

The GTX 960 looking great!

Our new BX100 SSD.

Finally, the new Ballistix Sport memory.

Apple To Produce More Than 5 Million Watches in First Run

The Wall Street Journal reports that Apple will produce 5-6 million Apple Watches in their first production run. It’s said that half of this number will be the low-end ‘Apple Watch Sport’, starting at $349. A third of those produced will be the stainless steel “mid-teer” ‘Apple Watch’ and the rest going to the highly expensive 18-karat gold ‘Apple Watch Edition’. It’s also said that the company expects to produce 1 million ‘Edition’ models a month following the launch.

“Orders for Apple Watch Edition – the high-end model featuring 18-karat gold casing – are relatively small in the first quarter but Apple plans to start producing more than one million units per month in the second quarter, the person said. Analysts expect demand for the high-end watches to be strong in China where Apple’s sales are booming.”

It’s worth pointing out that only 1 million Android Wear devices were sold last year – that being the entire year. So with the Apple Watch going on sale in April it will be interesting to see just how strong the demand will really be.

Source: The Wall Street Journal

Apps for Sporting Enthusiasts

Smartphones and their applications have changed the world. Long gone are the times where we would have to source our news from the daily newspapers, play our games on a console plugged into a television and teach ourselves to play guitar from a book. One sector that smartphone technology has completely revolutionised is the sports world. Owning a smartphone is a pleasure for any sports fan and you can come to expect that their phones will be littered with various sporting apps. So which are the best to have on your phone?

Sky Sports

In Britain, Sky Sports is the home of sport. With six television channels devoted solely to sport, the company has an unrivalled amount of sporting coverage and hence has the best news and scoops thanks to their intricate network of sources. For the latest football, cricket, tennis, F1 and rugby news, download the Sky Sports app. Their coverage on American sports is impressive, although not quite as good as their US counterparts, but they will not be beaten on European coverage.

Betfair betting app

Coinciding with the rise of smartphones has been the rise of internet betting. With betting now involving just a few taps of your forefinger, a lot more of us are partaking in it. In June 2013, 4.3 per cent of iPhone users had an online betting application. You can expect that number to be far higher now after the successful 2014 World Cup. There are a lot of betting applications in the market, all of which offer the same at the core. However, what sets betfair apart is the ease of the application combined with some of the best promotions in the sector and extensive betting markets. If you are a fan of horse racing online betting then you will really like it. Not only do they have some of the most attractive odds but they also allow punters to watch races that they have bet on.

FIFA 15 Ultimate Team

When it comes to sports video games they don’t come much better than EA’s flagship FIFA franchise. In 2013, FIFA made up 27% of EA Sports’ net revenues and 23% of their gross profits. This time about EA have unrolled the most popular aspect of the video game to mobile users; FIFA Ultimate Team (FUT). FUT sees you start out with a randomly composed team and your aim is to make it to the top division whilst assembling the team that you want to play with; players can be bought in packs or you can individually search for players. After playing the latest FUT on iOS you will certainly be impressed. The gameplay is fluid and the graphics for a phone are staggering. What makes FUT so enticing is that it is the perfect five-minute filler. If you have a ten-minute train journey you can have a quick match. Right now there is no better sports game in the app store.

Tiger Woods: My Swing

Getting the right swing is the hardest part of golf. Once you have a decent motion you are capable of playing on just about any course. That said, mastering the stroke is a craft and one that takes some serious hours. If you have ever looked at golf lessons you will know how extortionate they can be; that is where Tiger Woods: My Swing comes in. Here you can take tips off the master himself or analyse your own swing. You use the front-facing camera to record your motion and then you get the analysis that the application provides. You can even compare your swing to that of Woods’ himself. That is of course if you want to.

Nike Training Club

With the New Year now being ushered in it is time for a lot of us to try and burn off the timber we put on over the body-destroying Christmas period. As we all know, exercising is something that is a lot easier said than done. If this is something that applies to you then download the Nike Training Club. This free app is perfect for novices, providing you with numerous workout routines centred on your own level of fitness and targeting specific areas of the body. It is a rewarding app in two senses: one, it helps you lose weight; and two, the more you workout the more bonus regimes, recipes and fitness tips you unlock.

Stick Cricket

Another game and another worldie; Stick Cricket has come a long way this past decade. What was once one of the most enjoyable online games, and an unblocked site at school, made the move into the smartphone game market a while back. Since then it has only enhanced its already sublime reputation. Like FUT it is the perfect filler game, but there are also much longer game modes like World Domination, which has 16 levels for the gamer to complete. It is a silly, entertaining game that ticks all the boxes in the fun department.

NBC to Stream Super Bowl For Free – Except on Smartphones

NBC has announced that people in the US will be able to stream this year’s Super Bowl for free. The announcement was a surprising one, as US broadcasters and cable providers are known for their heavy restrictions on streaming content.

As part of this promotion for its TV Everywhere service, NBC will allow anyone to view 11 continuous hours of Super Bowl coverage without a cable subscription and without any logins or accounts.

This offering is not completely devoid of the strict and sometimes hostile restrictions however – while streaming will be available to all Mac and Windows users in the browser, the stream is not accessible on smartphones. The reason being is because of the fact that Verizon has an exclusive deal with the NFL for smartphone streaming rights, preventing NBC from providing its free stream. NBC will be making the show available to iPad and iPod touch users however, through the NBC Sports Live Extra app.

Source: MacRumors

Crucial Introduces New Ballistix Sport and Tactical DDR4 Gaming Memory

Crucial has introduced two new DDR4 modules to the Ballistix series, the Ballistix Sport LT and the Ballistix Tactical Gaming Memory

Ballistix Sport LT DDR4 memory is designed for the mainstream users for fast speeds and increased bandwidth. The new modules feature a covert digital camo design and integrated heat spreader and Intel XMP 2.0 profiles to achieve DDR4 speeds of 2400 MT/s.

The Crucial Ballistix Tactical DDR4 Gaming Memory supports four-channel architecture for maximized data rates. It delivers 2666 MT/s speeds and offers increased bandwidths of 21.3 GB/s. The modules feature a distinctive heat spreader on a black PCB  and also have certified Intel XMP 2.0 profiles for easy setup and configuration.

“With our new Ballistix DDR4 offerings, we continue our commitment to giving gamers, enthusiasts, and overclockers the latest memory products needed to keep their systems on the cutting edge,” said Jeremy Mortensen, product marketing manager, Crucial. “Our Ballistix Sport LT and Tactical DDR4 memory offers a great combination of performance, style, and reliability that gamers have come to expect from Crucial.”

Ballistix Sport LT and Ballistix Tactical DDR4 modules will be available in Q1 2015 at Crucial.com and through select global partners in 4GB and 8GB densities and in kits with up to 32GB. All Ballistix memory is backed by a limited lifetime warranty.

Thanks to Crucial for providing us with this information

Images courtesy of Crucial

18-Karat Gold Apple Watch to Cost A Small Fortune

Ok, I’m heading out for a conference. Designer leather wallet, check. Keys to the gold Bugatti Veyron, check. Wayfarer Leather Ray Bans, check. the only thing I’m missing now is an 18-karat gold smartwatch device, isn’t it obvious?

For those looking to splurge a little, your fashion prayers may be answered sooner rather than later with an 18-karat gold Apple Watch on the horizon, complete with a Red Modern Buckle band.

TechCrunch talked to some “jewelers familiar with the material” about these Apple Watch plans and reported:

“Chad Rickicki, a watch expert in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania said that a case the size and shape of the Apple Watch in 18 carat gold would cost about $600 to make. The rest — the electronics and markup could double that price.

That doesn’t mean that all of the Apple Watches will rest in the rarified air of haute horlogerie. The lower end sport versions will start at $349 and presumably the standard versions, simply called Apple Watch, will receive a premium over that. The Edition watches, however, are expensive because gold is expensive, even at 18K and intermixed with Apple’s alloys.”

We’re told that the price mentioned in the title is only a rough estimate and there is no actual release date set for this piece of kit.

However, if a thousand dollar watch isn’t quite your style, Apple is reportedly working on cheaper alternatives to the stock Apple Watch. Configurations such as the Apple Watch Sport is a popular choice, said to replace the normal sapphire iWatch screen with an ion-x glass and a lightweight aluminum frame.

The Apple Watch will be launched in 2015, starting at $349 USD.

Image courtesy of MacRumors

27 Year Old Arrested Over Illegal Streaming Sites

A 27 year old man from Manchester has been arrested by the Police Intellectual Property Crime Unit (PIPCU) on suspicion of running multiple illegal websites that stream premium sports. The series of sites is said to have allowed unlawful free access to pay TV services such as SkySports in an operation so big that its “freebies” add up to more than £10 million in lost subscription fees.

Detectives on the scene said they discovered an “industrial size streaming operation”. There were 12 servers streaming multiple sporting events from around the globe. Naturally all of the equipment was confiscated by the police and the suspect taking into custody for questioning. Given the scale of the operation and the fact that he was caught sitting there with it all streaming around him, I’d say this guy is pretty screwed on many counts of piracy.

“Not only is there a significant loss to industry with this particular operation but it is also unfair that millions of people work hard to be able to afford to pay for their subscription-only TV services when others cheat the system,” said DCI Danny Medlycott, the newly appointed Head of PIPCU.

Since the PIPCU unit launched in September last year it has been targeting online services such as this, only last month  it arrested a 20 year old on suspicion of running a proxy server and we expect we’ll be hearing from this team in the near future as they continue clamping down on illegal online activities.

Thank you Wired for providing us with this information.

Image courtesy of Weirdhut.

BBC Sport App Quick Off the Starting Block

For a large number of us, Sport is less of a hobby but more like a religion and that could be either towards football, golf, rugby, horse racing so on and so forth. In the UK especially and globally, BBC sport has a big presence and its sport pages on-line gets a constant stream of hits day in day out from fanatics wanting to keep up to date with the latest scores, fixtures and up to date news. Due to this, the BBC released a whole new mobile app just over seven weeks ago to give users the freedom to get all their updates in an easy and convenient location.

The app is a spin off following the success of the app that was released for the London 2012 Olympic Games last summer and although it was initially only available to iOS users in the UK to start, three weeks ago it went to the international download stores and just under a week ago it became available to UK Android users as well.

Fresh reports are coming from the BBC that the new app has not only been successful in its initial few weeks of download, but it has sailed right past the point of over 1 million downloads and given traffic to the BBC Sport site in general a huge boom in traffic. The BBC has stated that January just gone was a record month for overall traffic towards their sport sections and with over 42 million unique visitors and 1 billion page views, the record that was set last summer at the 2012 games has been well and truly smashed.

This drive in traffic and rapid rate of downloads goes to prove that there is a rapid shift towards the use of smartphones and tablets as we have been noting for quite a while now and with a 13% year-on-year gain in mobile traffic for the BBC, this number is only set to rise.

The mobile app can be downloaded from the Apple App Store and Google Play