Rock out with your Windows Phone or Windows device out
It wouldn't be fair to call Microsoft a Scrooge, not when the company is rolling out a pair of sweet deals for the holiday season, one of which includes 100 free albums. The caveat? You have to be a Windows or Windows Phone user. If you are, you can claim your 100 free albums from Microsoft by installing the company's Music Deals companion app. These aren't crappy albums, either.
Austin, Texas is one of the areas that Google is currently developing for its fiber network. While the company is still constructing the network, Google has revealed its residential pricing plans for Google Fiber in Austin before residents will be able to sign up for the service next month.
Do not adjust your calendar, it's not Black Friday yet. Nevertheless, some retailers and e-tailers have already begun offering Black Friday sales, including Electronic Arts through its Origin service. Starting now, you can save up to 75 percent off select titles on Origin, which include both new and classic titles. Battlefield 4 Digital Deluxe Edition is now $20, marked down from $40, or you can get the Premium Edition for $48, marked down from $60.
Windows XP replacement activity helped ease PC shipment declines in 2014
It wasn't that long ago when analysts had the PC market pegged for extinction in favor of tablets. Somehow they envisioned us all getting real work done on iPads and Android slate -- not even in a parallel universe where everything is topsy-turvy could such a scenario exists. Fast forward to today and things look quite a bit different. According to IDC, pressure from tablets seems to be waning, while smartphones and phablets are beginning to compete with PCs for disposable income.
Hacker group claims to be in possession of Sony's "secrets"
What secrets might Sony Pictures be hiding? We don't know the answer to that, but apparently a hacker group does, or at least is claiming that to be the case. Sony Pictures suffered a security breach by a hacker group called #GOP, which forced employees to shut down their systems and stay off the movie studio's network. The hackers say they're in possession of internal data, including the company's "secrets."
Choose your weapon: Shield portable or Shield tablet
If you happen to be in the market for a Shield (in either handheld portable or tablet form), or are otherwise looking for gift ideas this holiday season, hold your horses for just a few more days and you'll score a better deal. Like many, Nvidia is participating in the Black Friday festivities, and it's doing it with a couple of bundle options for the aforementioned mobile gaming devices, both of which will come a few extra incentives.
In anticipation of Blizzard's upcoming multiplayer online battle arena game, audio peripheral company Turtle Beach announced today the availability of its Heroes of the Storm PC gaming headset. The headset features swappable speaker plates depicting iconic Blizzard characters from the past 20 years, including those found in its Warcraft, Diablo, and StarCraft franchises.
Crowdfunding site Kickstarter has put the kibosh on Blood Sport, an immersive gaming experience in which in-game damage results in the player losing real blood. On the surface, that sounds like a horrendously bad idea -- imagine if a hacker infected your system with malware to disengage any safety measures that make sure you don't lose so much blood you become unconscious. However, this isn't a technology meant for homes.
Yahoo scrambles to fix an undersea cable affecting its mail service
Some Yahoo Mail users are suffering through a fourth consecutive day of service interruptions, the result of an underwater fiber cable cut. Yahoo says the cable was damaged by an unnamed third party that was attempting to fix a different cable and that it knows the exact location of the cut, which it is now in the process of repairing and testing. Users are hoping a fix comes soon, as they've been contending with slow or nonexistent service since November 20.
Is the best offense a good defense, or is the best defense a good offense? We're not sure, though it looks like AMD has decided to run with the latter -- dual-GPU Radeon R9 295X2 graphics cards can now be found on Newegg for around $770, seemingly indicating that AMD has gone on the offensive and slashed the price of its flagship card by about another $200. Bear in mind that when these cards launched earlier this year, they were selling for nearly twice as much at $1,500.