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  • mkds67 7:21 pm on February 15, 2015 Permalink | Reply
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    GWN: Online… 

    GWN 2

    GWN: Online (aka Global World News: Online) providing “News”, “Reviews”, “Articles”, “Exclusives” and much, much more…

    GWN: ONLINE

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  • mkds67 7:33 pm on January 1, 2014 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Access All Areas, App Market Places, Apple App Store, Apple iPad, Application Flaws, Application Hijackings, Apps For Devices, At Risk, BlackBerry App World, Blowing The Whistle, Bluetooth Hack, Bluetooth Jacker, Candy Crush Saga, Free Apps Danger, Free Apps Download, Global World News, Google Play, Insecure Applications, Invasion Of Privacy, iPads Are Open, iPhone Security Breach, John Collins, Know Your Phone, LG Mobiles, Mobi-Apps, Mobile application development, Mobile Application Programs, Mobile Application Rip-Offs, Mobile Applications, Mobile Devices, Mobile Hackers, Mobile Phone, Mobile Phone Security, Mobile Phones, Mobile Rip-Offs, No App Regulations, Obama Security Threat, Privacy Invasions, Security Lacking Mobiles, Seeing Is Believing, T&C’s Worthless, Technology Device Flaws, Technology Today, The MKDS Network, The Red Hive, Tomorrows News Today, Wi-Fi Hacker, Windows Phone   

    Because 99% Of Mobile Phone Users Don’t Know… 

    Mobile Applications

    “How safe is your Mobile Phone?”

    Last year The Red Hive and The [MKDS] Network made enquiries on the rising popularity of the ‘Mobi-Apps’ aka ‘Mobile Applications’, to which they received many varied and long winded, if not quite vague details which told them that the Mobile Retailers had no idea – at the very least no clue – as to ‘What’ or ‘How’ many of the various available ‘Mobi-Apps’ were or operated on a physical scale. So, it was with the help of several other ‘Network Associates’ who delved into the dark and murky world of the ‘Mobi-App’ by way of researching the whole infrastructure of the small packets of data that more than (then) 1 billion Mobile Device Users downloaded for Business, Fun and Socialising – what they discovered and what they found would turn around the whole ‘Safe Feeling’ from everyone at The Red Hive as regards to ‘Mobile Application Programs’.

    John Collins, a Freelance Reporter assigned through The Network’s GWN (Global World News) and Tomorrows News Today (T.N.T) took on the story and uncovered Information, Facts and Evidence that would place a dark cloud over the ‘Mobile App Generation’, but most of all, lift the lid off of one of the world’s largest ‘Personal Invasions’, ‘Breaches in Confidence’ and ‘Theft through Possession’. In the article you are about to read, many may be swayed to deploy their disagreement or anger toward The Network’s statement, while others will require more ‘Reliable Evidence’. For the record, Mr Collins and all other ‘Associates’ connected to the above mentioned Groups and Companies did not at any such time acquire any information outside the boundaries of the Internetwork. All the details that you read herein are free to view and look up across the Internet.

    I Love My Mobile Phone…

    Each and every morning I reach out and take my Smart Phone in my hand and turn off the preset alarm that has been ceremoniously activated the night before I went to sleep, just before I jump out of bed and check out the latest news over a hot cup of coffee. This is done through my Smartphone too, as the fastest way to get your Top News Stories these days is by way of Mobile Technology and the ‘Mobi-Apps’ that pop up in their classy and glitzy appearances on multiple platforms of various eStores, such as ‘Play Store’, ‘Apple Online Stores’ and ‘Amazon Market Place’. After the News has been sifted and absorbed, my next call of the day is the ‘Work Schedule’, where I check who is on my ‘Meetings Schedule’, who I have to phone, conference and meet. Everything is organised how I have chosen to set it out on a ‘Day-To-Day’ basis before the crack of Dawn every morning.

    With an estimated outnumbering of 5-1 on Mobile Phones to every human being, not including the Tablets, Laptops or Desktops, the overall flood of ‘Communications Devices’ has pretty much taken the 21st Century by ‘Invasion’. Even the thought of today’s availability of ‘Handsets’ would have been shrugged off forty to fifty years ago, even though the Scientists and Crazies back then would argue that the age of technology would someday in the future overwhelm the Human Race. From the simplest handset during the 1980’s Yuppie Uprise (The Brick), to the more slim line Motorola’s, the more popular that the Mobile Phone became to the General Public, the more the General Public wanted to own a piece of history in the making – and make history it did.

    Through resources and assistance in looking into the ‘Mobile Phone Applications’, it was found that the Industry in which had the billions of daily User’s trust in them circumvented flaws in the Trust. Manufacturer’s and Makers of both Mobile Phones and Mobile Applications allowed many of their Handsets and the Applications, Routines and Securities of both become open and vulnerable. Of course, not everyone who owns a Mobile Phone, especially a Smartphone knows this because they are told that ‘Trust from each and every Customer is the stepping stones in which to continue the unbreakable relationship between Consumer and Technology.’

    The day that we started to research the ‘Dark App Project’, there was much optimism and doubt on whether we would find anything short of ‘App Makers’ making heaps of money through some of the amazing ‘Applications’ that are on offer today. Unfortunately, however, what we were to discover in ‘Off-Line’ circumstances painted a much sinister picture and broke our illusions very quickly.

    The following information is from various sources, including Wikipedia, Google, News International and other Open Domain Conduits. This information is available to the Global Community at any time and for Free, it does not, however contain any information or facts that have not already been put out in the press or news groups around the world.

    What Is A ‘Mobi-App’?

    ‘Mobi-App’ is the abbreviation of Mobile Application the Application Software which is ran on Smartphones, Tablet Computers and other Mobile Devices. Most noted for attainability through ‘Application Distribution Platforms’, such as Apple App Store, Google Play, Windows Phone Store, BlackBerry App World and now Amazon eStore.

    The mainstream function and execution of a ‘Mobile Application’ or ‘Mobi-App’, is that it is chosen from the ‘App Store’ through a search before being clicked and downloaded onto the Customers ‘Target Device’.

    Information obtained using Wikipedia states: “Mobile apps were originally offered for general productivity and information retrieval, including email, calendar, contacts, and stock market and weather information. However, public demand and the availability of developer tools drove rapid expansion into other categories, such as mobile games, factory automation, GPS and location-based services, banking, order-tracking, and ticket purchases. The explosion in number and variety of apps made discovery a challenge, which in turn led to the creation of a wide range of review, recommendation, and curation sources, including blogs, magazines, and dedicated online app-discovery services.”

    The ‘Mobi-App’ began to seep onto the Internet and onto Mobile Devices in 2007-2008, with the popularity being from the small ‘Program-Like’ packets of data that would be of a compressed state so as to be fully transceivable to the User from the Vendor. Becoming very popular in 2010 the ‘Mobi-App’ was listed as “Word of the Year” by the “American Dialect Society” in 2009, while Technology Columnist David Pogue said that newer Smartphones could be nicknamed ‘App Phones’ to distinguish them from earlier less sophisticated Smartphones.

    Bringing the information up to date as best we can, it was the popularity of ‘Mobi-Apps’ that had continued to rise, as their usage had become increasingly prevalent across Mobile Phone Users. In May 2012 ‘comScore reported that during the previous quarter, more Mobile subscribers used ‘Apps’ than those who browsed the web on their devices: 51.1% vs. 49.8% respectively. Researchers found that usage of Mobile Applications strongly correlates with user context and depends on user’s location and the time of the day.

    Market Research from Gartner suggests that 102 billion ‘Mobi-Apps’ will be downloaded in 2013 (91% of them will be free) but they will still generate $26 billion, up 44.4% on 2012’s $18 billion. An analyst report estimates that the ‘App’ economy creates revenues of more than 10 billion Euros per year within the European Union, while over 529,000 jobs have been created in EU28 States due to the growth of the ‘App Market’.

    Developing apps for mobile devices requires considering the constrains of these devices. Mobile devices run on battery and have less powerful processors than personal computers. Developers also have to consider a lengthy array of screen sizes, hardware specifications and configurations because of intense competition in mobile software and changes within each of the platforms.

    Mobile application development requires use of specialized integrated development environments. Mobile apps are first tested within the development environment using emulators and later subjected to field testing. Emulators provide an inexpensive way to test applications on mobile phones to which developers may not have physical access. – Wikipedia.

    What Is MAM?

    Mobile application management (MAM) describes software and services responsible for provisioning and controlling access to internally developed and commercially available mobile apps used in business settings, which has become necessary with the onset of Bring your own device (BYOD) phenomenon. When an employee brings a personal device into an enterprise setting, mobile application management enables the corporate IT staff to transfer required applications, control access to business data, and remove locally cached business data from the device if it is lost, or when its owner no longer works with the company.

    Who’s-Who In The ‘Mobi-App’ Players?

    Amazon Appstore

    Main article: Amazon Appstore

    Amazon Appstore is an alternate application store for the Android operating system. It was opened in March 2011, with 3800 applications.

    App Store

    Main article: App Store (iOS)

    Apple’s App Store for iOS was the first app distribution service, which set the standard for app distribution services and continues to do so, opened on July 10, 2008, and as of January 2011, reported over 10 billion downloads. As of June 6, 2011, there are 425,000 third-party apps available, which are downloaded by 200 million iOS users. During Apple’s 2012 Worldwide Developers Conference in 20, Apple CEO Tim Cook announced that the App Store has 650,000 available apps to download as well as “an astounding 30 billion apps” downloaded from the app store until that date. From an alternative perspective, figures seen in July 2013 by the BBC from tracking service Adeven indicate over two-thirds of apps in the store are “zombies”, barely ever installed by consumers.

    BlackBerry World

    Main article: BlackBerry World

    BlackBerry World is the application store for BlackBerry 10 and BlackBerry OS devices. It opened in April 2009 as BlackBerry App World, and as of February 2011, was claiming the largest revenue per app: $9,166.67 compared to $6,480.00 at the Apple App Store and $1,200 in the Android market. In July 2011, it was reporting 3 million downloads per day and one billion total downloads. In May 2013, BlackBerry World reached over 120,000 apps. BlackBerry 10 users can also side load and run Android apps.

    Google Play

    Main article: Google Play

    Google Play (formerly known as the Android Market) is an international online software store developed by Google for Android devices. It opened in October 2008. In April 2013, there were approximately 850,000 apps available for Android, and the estimated number of applications downloaded from Google Play was 40 billion. Android Apps can also be sideload onto BlackBerry 10 devices.

    Nokia Store

    Main article: Ovi (Nokia)

    An app store for Nokia phones was launched internationally in May 2009. As of April 2011 there were 50,000 apps, and as of August 2011, Nokia was reporting 9 million downloads per day. In February 2011, Nokia reported that it would start using Windows Phone as its primary operating system. In May 2011, Nokia announced plans to rebrand its Ovi product line under the Nokia brand and Ovi Store was renamed Nokia Store in October 2011. Nokia Store remains as the distribution platform for its previous lines of mobile operating systems but will no longer allow developers to publish new apps or app updates for its legacy Symbian and MeeGo operating systems from January 2014.

    Windows Phone Store

    Main article: Windows Phone Store

    Windows Phone Store was introduced by Microsoft for its Windows Phone platform, which was launched in October 2010. As of October 2012, it has over 120,000 apps available.

    Windows Store

    Main article: Windows Store

    Windows Store was introduced by Microsoft for its Windows 8 and Windows RT platforms. While it can also carry listings for traditional desktop programs certified for compatibility with Windows 8, it is primarily used to distribute “Windows Store apps”—which are primarily built for use on tablets and other touch-based devices (but can still be used with a keyboard and mouse, and on desktop computers and laptops)

    Samsung Apps Store

    Main article: Samsung Apps

    An app store for Samsung mobile phones was founded in September 2009. As of October 2011 Samsung Apps reached 10 million downloads. Currently the store is available in 125 countries and it offers apps for Windows Mobile, Android and Bada platforms.

    What Is ACAP?

    The Application Configuration Access Protocol (ACAP) is a protocol for storing and synchronizing general configuration and preference data. It was originally developed so that IMAP clients can easily access address books, user options, and other data on a central server and be kept in synch across all clients.

    Two International ACAP Conferences were held, one in Pittsburgh, PA, USA, in 1997, and the other at Qualcomm Incorporated, San Diego, CA, USA, in February, 1998.

    ACAP grew to encompass several other areas, including bookmark management for web browsers—it’s effectively a roaming protocol for Internet applications. ACAP is in use by at least four clients and three servers to varying degrees, but it has never achieved the popularity of Lightweight Directory Access Protocol or SyncML. It is a deceptively simple protocol, but the combination of three key features, hierarchical data, fine-grained access control, and “contexts” or saved searches with notification, has caused serious problems for server implementer’s.

    Unlike LDAP, ACAP was designed for frequent writes, disconnected mode access (meaning clients can go offline and then resynchronize later), and so on. It also handles data inheritance, sometimes known as stacking, which provides easy creation of defaults.

    The IETF ACAP Working Group ceased activity in April 2004, having released two RFCs, RFC 2244 (“ACAP — Application Configuration Access Protocol”) and RFC 2245 (“Anonymous SASL Mechanism”).

     

    Network Working Group – C. Newman

    Request for Comments: 2244 – Innosoft

    Category: Standards Track – J. G. Myers

    Netscape

    November 1997

    ACAP — Application Configuration Access Protocol

    Status of this Memo

    This document specifies an Internet standards track protocol for the Internet community, and requests discussion and suggestions for improvements.  Please refer to the current edition of the “Internet

    Official Protocol Standards” (STD 1) for the standardization state and status of this protocol.  Distribution of this memo is unlimited.

    Copyright Notice

    Copyright (C) The Internet Society 1997.  All Rights Reserved.

    Abstract

    The Application Configuration Access Protocol (ACAP) is designed to support remote storage and access of program option, configuration and preference information.  The data store model is designed to allow a client relatively simple access to interesting data, to allow new information to be easily added without server re-configuration and to promote the use of both standardized data and custom or proprietary data.  Key features include “inheritance” which can be used to manage default values for configuration settings and access control lists which allow interesting personal information to be shared and group information to be restricted.

    What ‘Mobi-Apps’ Can Access…

    Check Those Privacy Policy & Advertising Terms Carefully…

    Here is an example of “What you really DO NOT need in your App”.

    Privacy policy & Advertising Terms

    Thank you for downloading this free, ad-supported application! Please read carefully. This application is ad-supported and our advertising partner, Airpush, inc., may place ads within applications and in your device’s notification tray and home screen. Airpush collects certain information in accordance with the permissions you just granted through the prior screen.

    When you click on the advertisements delivered by Airpush, you will typically be directed to a third party’s web page and we may pass certain (missing information) of your information to the third parties operating or hosting these pages, including your email address, phone number and a list of the Apps on your device.

    For more information on how Airpush collects, uses and shares your information, and learn about your information choices, please visit the Airpush Privacy Policy. If you do not wish to receive ads delivered by Airpush in the future, you may visit the Airpush opt-out page or delete this App.

    So, we clicked on the Airpush opt-out page.

    For the record, the information which we had already read through and analysed, we did an opt-out of our own by closing the pages and returning back to the Game App…And the first thing that hit is in the face from the screen was this –

    First Ad Hits Game Start

    As very keen Games Players (Some of us Games Masters), we believe that people should be aware that they are downloading any ‘Mobi-App’, ‘Game’ or ‘Utility’ with peace of mind. As soon as President Obama revealed to the world that The Whitehouse denied him an iPhone because “It was a security risk” and that it was not a ‘Secure’ mobile device, we became more than intrigued. Here you had a Mobile Phone that was one of the Top Seller’s (If not THE top seller) and it was not secure enough for the President of the United States of America!! Yes, according to some sources in Washington, President Obama has acquired ‘Candy Crush’, ‘Fruit Ninja’ and also ‘ReadIT’ Apps. So, the circle of insecurity may not be too far behind on “T&C’s” and “P&T’s”.

     

    Know The Risks – From Professionals…

    McAfee Labs found that under the camouflage of “free” apps, criminals are able to get consumers to agree to invasive permissions that allow scammers to deploy malware. The permissions in free apps, funded by adware, leak personal information which ad networks use to serve targeted ads; however, McAfee found that 26 percent of apps are likely more than just adware. SMS scams and rooting exploits were among the most popular types of threats seen across a variety of apps.

    “Most consumers don’t understand or even worry about the app permissions they agree to,” said Luis Blando, vice president of mobile product development at McAfee. “Because of that, cyber criminals are increasingly abusing app permissions as an efficient way to deliver mobile malware. Through these agreements mobile consumers are unwittingly putting their personal information into the hands of criminals disguised as ad networks, and opening up endless doors for scammers.”

    The report analyzes FakeRun, malware that tricks users in the United States, India, and 64 other countries into giving an app a five-star rating on Google Play. Once an app developer has been rated highly, other apps they publish will be trusted, which creates more opportunities for a criminal to publish and distribute malware-carrying apps.

    The report also identifies the most popular apps that carry malware. Of the top 20 downloads of malware-infected apps, games won the popularity contest, followed by personalization and a tie between tools, music, lifestyle (a cover category for adult content) and TV.

     

    ·         SMSend malware was the most serious problem for China, Malaysia, Taiwan, Japan, and Hong Kong

    ·         Four of the top 10 serious threats in China involve premium rate SMS scams

    ·         China was the #1 victim by count in all of the top five most common rooting exploits

    ·         Free apps in the “Games” and “Personalization” categories were the most likely to carry malware

    ·         Russia continues to be the #1 source of malicious apps

    ·         Ice Cream Sandwich (Android OS 4.0.x) is the most popular platform for malware

     

    We’re bombarded with permission requests each time we install an application and since we want the application to work, we click allow. Giving applications access to contacts, calendar, and photos means it can access and copy your information to their servers anytime and as often as the application wants.

    Protecting the device is important in order to protect the data stored and accessed from the device.  What’s worth protecting is not the pieces of metal and plastic or even the applications, it’s the data and access to that data. Don’t store bank passwords on a mobile device without using a secure, encrypted password manager separate from the operating system.

    Jailbreaking iOS and Android reduces security, putting your data at risk and aiding malware. Manufacturers are adding user-requested features, reducing the need to jailbreak devices in order to be productive.

    According to a Gizmodo article, “the Associated Press reports that smartphone robberies now account for nearly half of all robberies in San Francisco.” Additionally, they report that rates in New York City are up by as much as 40 percent, and in Los Angeles, they’re up by 27 percent over last year. Thieves steal your phone, run up your bill, copy your data, and then sell the device on the black market.  Save yourself some money by setting a passcode as soon as you get a new phone.  Use at least a six-character password to protect yourself from the slightly more tech-savvy criminals.

    Third-party analytics companies are gathering your physical movements to determine what stores you enter, for how long, and which stores you bypass, and then selling that data to retailers.  They are able to do this by tracking the unique MAC address included in broadcasts your device sends out when updating the list of available Wi-Fi networks, even when you don’t connect to these networks or take any action.  Disabling Wi-Fi when not in use will keep your physical location a mystery.

    Criminals have great success bundling malware with popular applications and games such as Angry Birds and offering them for free through third-party app stores. These app stores don’t review submissions as carefully as trusted sources such as Apple and Google.  Avoid third-party app stores to avoid most malware.

    Devices that are lost or damaged are the main cause of mobile data loss, but don’t forget, devices managed by employers can be wiped for security reasons or when changing jobs. Mobile devices include easy configuring, backup solutions that are automatic and wireless.  Make sure you back up your personal and work data before you lose it.

    Protecting data and privacy doesn’t have to be disruptive. If you’re responsible for managing mobile security in your company, picking the right solution that maximizes user productivity, is transparent, and gives enterprise control while protecting user privacy will be well accepted by users and achieve your security goals.

    The Network’s Verdict…

    The Mobile Phone phenomenon is well and truly upon us all, not just those in Business, but for all of the Social Networker’s and Texters too. The knowledge that all of our Information and Data is safe and secure on any device is (or should be) one of the main priorities when selecting our product for making contact, storing, creating, playing games or even setting Tasks and Schedules. It doesn’t have to be tedious or difficult to set any device up to your expectations, and at the same time, it should not be overlooked or groaned upon from the Manufacturers to apply security for their Customers and/or Clientele who put their trust in their Technology.

    From many of the Mobile Phones, Tablets and Smartphones that were a part of this Project, we found that at least 70% of them failed in tests for ‘Security Issues’ due to both ‘Mobi-Apps’ and ‘Software Programs’ which could allow anyone with the basic knowledge of ‘Information Retrieval’ to access, snoop, copy, delete, insert, steal and reformat the device. The iPad was the main device which showed that ‘Security Issue’ accompanying the products purchase was flawed and would allow ‘Bluetooth Jackers’, ‘Hackers’ and ‘Adware Companies’ to have complete access to ALL information within your device. More than twelve ‘Smartphones’ ranging from LG to Blackberry failed in several tests too, with the Blackberry X being one of the most secure from all of them. Our goal or intentions are not to scare people away from buying Mobile Devices or downloading Apps and Games, but to educate them for that moment when everything that you have and own on your Mobile Phone is Wiped, Copied, and Stolen or used against you in the many forms in which Cyber Crimes roll these days. Do not forget, it is YOU who give these ‘Mobi-Apps’ the permissions to access your Phone Book (The private collection of Friends, Associates, Businessmen/women, and Doctors, Solicitors, Judges, Police Officers, Politicians and in many cases Bank Managers), it is you who gives them permissions to check your Bookmarks and other Apps (Bookmarks of webpages you have visited, including any indescretionary adult websites, travel pages, bank pages, PayPal App, Banking Apps), and it is YOU who allows them free roaming and snooping inside your SD/XD Cards and Internal Flash Hard Drive (Where all your personal pictures, photos, word documents, presentations and sensitive information and data can be found). In a nutshell – It’s “Access All Areas” and basically speaking you may as well just hand your phone or device over to them. If you have any secrets on your Phone, Tablet or Smartphone, then this will not be the case when you allow these ‘Exceptions’, and in our book, nobody should have this right or privilege over anyone who ‘Downloads’ an App or Game just for fun.

    The Privacy Conditions argument continues with Facebook today, as much as the Privacy Rulings over ‘Mobi-Apps’ continues until there is something implemented to assure Mobile Users that both their very own Privacy and Equipment is protected, either through the Manufacturer or through the Apps themselves. Until then, Global World News and Tomorrows News Today will certainly be adding more ‘Mobi-Apps’ to the gathered listing so far to warn people to stay away from them.

    Just so that we are completely and utterly clear on this whole thing. If you have a Mobile Device, everything that you do with that device is saved. Much of the information is taken by your Operator and stored as a precaution under the Condition known as Loss, Breakage or the Device being stolen. Today’s technological advancements leave very little room for Privacy Assurance, and with the latest GPS Location, Facial Recognition Software, Social Network Integration and other Cloak and Dagger Fads that tempt and lure us into downloading the very latest Apps and Programs, we sometimes click ‘Install’ without checking the risks just because a Family Member or Friend has got it first. We say Enjoy your Mobile Device, but think before you accept the T&C’s– would you accept candy from a stranger without seeing the candy first? Would you pay for a car under the word that there is a car waiting for you after handing over the money? Or would you really have trust in anyone but yourself in having your Banking Details for complete access and withdrawal?

    Other Projects In Progress…

    Where do all those Cold Calls come from?

    Why phoning for Take-Away Meals is Big Business for the Take Away

    Who ‘Accesses’ your Information?

    Is there a ‘Monopolies Board’ in the UK?

    Companies you really should not trust!

    This Article was written by John Collins on behalf of, and with the assistance of The Red Hive, The [MKDS] Network and Tomorrows News Today (GWN).

    2013/2016 ©™® The Red Hive. All rights reserved.

     

     
  • mkds67 8:30 am on May 11, 2013 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: access microsoft, boot times, , , next generation xbox, , Xbox TV Streaming   

    Report: Xbox Set-Top Box Is On The Way For Streaming And Casual Gaming 

    xbox-tv

    Just a day after the WSJ reported that Microsoft’s oft-rumored set-top box was dead in the water, Verge has a different story, claiming the company is preparing an “Xbox TV” set-top for release this year. 

    The set-top would be a cheap (think $99 or less) alternative to the current-generation Xbox 360, giving users access to all the core entertainment services including content streaming, casual gaming and Web access. 

    Microsoft will allegedly use a chipset that will allow for an “always-on” device, meaning near instant boot times and quick access to TV and entertainment apps. The current-generation of Roku devices are “always-on,” as well, and use shockingly little electricity. 

    The device will be launched alongside the next-generation Xbox, which will be unveiled on May 21st and be released in November.

     
  • mkds67 8:24 am on May 11, 2013 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: blu ray disc, cable boxes, , hdmi input, , , Xbox Fusion, Xbox New Design   

    Next Xbox Will Not Require Always-On Internet Connection 

    Xbox-Fusion-or-Infinity

    According to Ars, citing an internal Microsoftemail, the upcoming Xbox sequel will not require an always-on Internet connection, as widely rumored. 

    The memo was allegedly sent to employees working on Durango, Microsoft’s codename for the console. “Durango is designed to deliver the future of entertainment while engineered to be tolerant of today’s Internet. There are a number of scenarios that our users expect to work without an Internet connection, and those should ‘just work’ regardless of their current connection status. Those include, but are not limited to: playing a Blu-ray disc, watching live TV, and yes playing a single player game.” 

    Additionally, the report confirms that the Xbox will have an HDMI input, allowing for cable boxes to be connected for live TV viewing. The console is expected to include TV listings and guides. 

    Microsoft will unveil the console at a press event on May 21st.

     
  • mkds67 8:30 pm on May 10, 2013 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: game experiences, , star wars fans, Star Wars Franchise, Star Wars Games, star wars titles, star wars universe,   

    EA Licenses ‘Star Wars’ For Upcoming Games 

    Star-Wars-the-Force-Unleashed

    Disney has announced a new multi-year licensing agreement with Electronic Arts (EA) for new games based on the popular Star Wars stories and characters. 

    EA has already confirmed at least three new Star Wars titles for gamers across multiple platforms while Disney has kept the rights to develop mobile and social titles. 

    “This agreement demonstrates our commitment to creating quality game experiences that drive the popularity of the Star Wars franchise for years to come,” said John Pleasants, Co-President of Disney Interactive.“Collaborating with one of the world’s premier game developers will allow us to bring an amazing portfolio of new Star Wars titles to our fans around the world.” 

    “Every developer dreams of creating games for the Star Wars universe,” said EA Labels President Frank Gibeau. “Three of our top studios will fulfill that dream, crafting epic adventures for Star Wars fans. DICE and Visceral will produce new games, joining the BioWare team which continues to develop for the Star Wars franchise. The new experiences we create may borrow from films, but the games will be entirely original with all new stories and gameplay.”

    It is unclear how much EA paid to receive the exclusive rights. Disney purchased LucasFilm last year for $4 billion.

     
  • mkds67 7:57 pm on May 10, 2013 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , heavy hitter, initial public offerings, kickstarter, mayfield fund, Ouya Games Console, The Game Consol.e, venture capital firms   

    Ouya Raises A Lot More Money, But Delays Launch Of Console 

    ouya_console_2013_600x300Ouya, the open-source console originally scheduled for commercial release at the beginning of June, has been delayed. 

    The console will see a three week delay, to June 25th, which likely means there are some additional kinks to be worked out in regards to supply. 

    More importantly for the company, after raising almost $9 million through Kickstarter, the company has just raised another $15 million from venture capital firms Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers and Mayfield Fund. 

    CEO Julie Uhrman says the delay “allows us to do more and get more units into retail quickly. Our demand is already beyond expectations. That’s a great problem to have, but it leads to a need for cash.” 

    Kleiner Perkins is a heavy-hitter in the industry, having invested in over 700 ventures leading to 200 initial public offerings. 

    The console runs on Android and will retail for $99 at major retailers with extra controllers costing $50 each.

     
  • mkds67 7:53 pm on May 10, 2013 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Always On, , , offline games, robust internet, shuhei, Sony Playstation 4,   

    Sony: No Always-Online Requirement For PS4 

    ps4_logo_01_600x300

    Following the months of speculation about the next Xbox requiring an always-online Internet connection, Sony reveals it never even considered it. 

    “Did we consider it? No, we didn’t consider it,” Sony president of Worldwide Studios,Shuhei Yoshida, told Game Informermagazine. 

    “The main reason being that many countries don’t have robust Internet connections. It makes sense for people to have Internet connections to play online games, but for offline games there are many countries that we saw [that] do not really have robust Internet.” 

    A leaked memo eased months of speculation that Microsoft would require the next Xbox console to be constantly connected to the Internet, even when a connection is unnecessary to play a single-player game. 

    In the PC area, always-on requirements have seen some snags. SimCity requires a constant Internet connection to play, which was a major problem when server ran into difficulty after launch, for example.

     
  • mkds67 7:50 pm on May 10, 2013 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , Medel Of Honour, Real Weapons Games, shoot em up, transportation,   

    EA Drops Licensing Deal With Arms Vendors 

    medal_of_honor_warfighter_artwork_250px

    Electronic Arts has said it dropped licensing deals with the manufacturers of weapons, citing constitutional rights. 

    The publisher was criticized for offering links to real-world weapons ahead of the Medal of Honor: Warfighter release, and responded by removing all links to external arms vendors and purging blog posts that endorsed firearms. 

    EA executive Frank Gibeau told Reuters that its gamers are “telling a story and we have a point of view,” and points out that a book author does not need to pay to use the word “Colt.” 

    EA is already engaged in a simial legal battle in U.S. courts, after it received a cease and desist letter from Bell Helicopter for “using” the AH-1Z Viper, the UH-1Y, and the V-22 Osprey in Battlefield 3.

     
  • mkds67 7:39 pm on May 10, 2013 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Artillery Costs Lives, battlefield, Battlefield 3 Game, bf3, denial of service, game servers, gamers, , Real Weapons   

    Battlefield 3 Servers Hit By DDoS 

    Battlefield_3_screenshot

    EA has blamed a distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack on its servers for connection issues experienced by Battlefield 3 gamers yesterday. 

    The publisher used its Twitter account to explain the situation to frustrated Battlefield players. “The current BF3 and Battelog outages are a result of activity that appears to be aimed at overwhelming our game servers,” it said. 

    “Thank you for being understanding. We are going to try our best to get everyone back onto the battlefield as soon as possible.” 

    DICE and EA also decided to postpone the Battlefield Double XP event scheduled to run from May 9 to May 13 due to the issues. 

    So, are we really ready for always-on gaming?

     
  • mkds67 7:36 pm on May 10, 2013 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Addiction Counts, blizzard, Blizzard Games, chief executive, online games, subscriber figures, three months, World Of Warcraft, world of warcraft subscribers   

    World Of Warcraft Loses 1.3 Million Subscribers In Three Months 

    World_of_warcraft_character_art

    Activision Blizzard has revealed that 1.3 million World of Warcraft subscribers have dumped the game in the past three months. 

    That drop represents about 14 percent of all WoW users, and is made up mostly of players located in the East where the publisher has made considerable efforts to get and retain players. Activision Blizzard has blamed the rise of free-to-play games for the subscriber loss. 

    It has told investors to expect subscriber figures to dip even lower. 

    “It’s important to note that the nature of online games has changed, and with the environment becoming far more competitive,” said chief executive Bobby Kotick. 

    “To address this, we’re working to release new content more frequently to keep our players engaged longer and make it easier for lapsed players to come back into the game.” 

    Despite the drop, WoW remains the most popular subscriber-based game in the world with 8.3 million players. In 2010, subscribers peaked at 12 million.

     
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