The second Tuesday of every month is known as Patch Tuesday for Windows users, and if you didn't install yesterday's batch of security updates, there's a good reason why you might want to put it on your short-term list of things to do. One of the patches in yesterday's Tuesday roundup addresses a critical bug in Windows that went unnoticed for 19 years and is present in every version of the OS from Windows 95 on up.
Just ahead of the holidays, Microsoft today unveiled its new Work & Play Bundle, a collection of four premium consumer services packaged up and offered together for $199 per year. Specifically, The Work & Play Bundle includes subscriptions to Office 365 Home, Xbox Live Gold, Xbox Music Pass, and Skype Unlimited World + Wi-Fi, plus associated goodies like 1TB of OneDrive online storage (comes with Office 365 Home).
Spotify responds to Taylor Swift's decision to yank her albums
Taylor Swift, the country-turned-pop music star decided to pull all of her songs off of Spotify right as she released 1989, her first pop-only album. In doing so, she called the streaming service a "grand experiment" and voiced other disparaging opinions about the service and streaming model in general. In response, Spotify CEO Daniel Ek pulled a Jerry Maguire and showed Swift the money. As in, more than $2 billion.
Epic Games made the decision earlier this year to offer up its Unreal Engine 4 to anyone and everyone for $19 per month (plus 5 percent of gross revenue resulting from any commercial products you build using UE4), affording game developers of any size and budget a chance to play with a complete and popular game engine. Wondering what you can do with it? To get a taste, there are two new UE4 demos available, one for HTML5 and the other for Nvidia's Maxwell GPUs.
Beta driver boosts performance in Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare and Assassin's Creed Unity
AMD Radeon graphics card owners had to sit back and watch as Nvidia released not one, but two WHQL certified driver releases in less than a week, one of which included performance tweaks for Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare and the other adding Assassin's Creed Unity optimizations to the mix. If you've pitched a tent in AMD's camp, you can stop pounding sand now -- AMD's Catalyst 14.11.1 beta driver is now available with performance enhancements for both titles.
We can't say we've ever felt the need to adjust the click resistance on our mouse buttons, but at the same time, we won't begrudge Asus Republic of Gamers (ROG) for implementing the feature in its new Gladius gaming mouse -- heck,we'll try just about anything once. The Gladius makes use of Omron mouse switches that are good for 20 million clicks, and should you ever reach that, Asus ROG built an easy-swap socket to make replacement a breeze.
When Microsoft acquired Nokia's smartphone business for $7.2 billion earlier this year, part of the negotiated deal was that Microsoft could continue to use the Nokia branding for the next decade. Now just two months after officially closing the deal, Nokia is dead to Microsoft, now just a reminder of where it doesn't want to be in terms of market share. With that said, meet the budget-focused Microsoft Lumia 535, the company's first branded handset.
BlizzCon 2014 marked the 8th annual event for Blizzard and it was arguably the company’s biggest one yet.
After 17 years, the company finally revealed an entirely new, original IP in multiplayer team-based shooter Overwatch. In addition to that, we got to see more from other upcoming titles such as StarCraft II: Legacy of the Void and Blizzard’s MOBA, Heroes of the Storm.
This is one of those cases where it's not okay to shoot the messenger (is it ever?), but in case you were wondering, a patch for Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare is coming soon. Developer Sledgehammer Games says so, as does Captain Obvious, who points out that post-release patches for major titles are as common as post-releases patches for major titles (he's a smart one, that Captain Obvious).
Nvidia releases its second GeForce WHQL driver in a week
While we're sitting at home playing video games, Nvidia's team of software engineers are toiling away on new driver releases, two of which have come in less than week. Yes, it was a mere six days ago that Nvidia gave gamers its GeForce 344.60 WHQL driver, a release that was intended to boost performance in Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare. Now you can download an incremental update to GeForce 344.60 WHQL, which is primed for Ubisoft's Assassin's Creed Unity title.