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App Pick - Land Grabbers

New Macbook 'Features'

Apple stunned the world with the new new Macbook. It's slim, has great battery life, is powered by a cell-phone sized system, has a single USB port and an amazing 480p camera. Oh, and this Netbook will cost you $1,299. While there are some good points at the link below, one of my favorite highlights is the Apple "Engineer" that is being interviewed below.


Source: VentureBeat

Apple May Have Invented USB Type-C

Apple has recently shown off their new Macbook that is pretty unique in that it is Macbook Air thin, and yet is still touted as a full-featured Macbook. One of the things that this unit has is a single USB Type-C connector that allows USB cables to be plugged in upside down or rightside up. According to a recent interview, Apple blogger John Gruber claims that Apple innvented USB Type-C and just gave it to the USB Standards Council so they could make the world a better place. That's interesting and so characteristic of Apple to give away design ideas and forego trademarks, copyrights and patents. What a wonderful company Apple is...[sarcasm]

I have heard, can't say who, but let's call them "informed little birdies", that USB-C is an Apple invention and that they gave it to the standard bodies. And that the politics of such is that they can't really say that. They're not going to come out in public and say it, but they did. It is an Apple invention and they do want it to become a standard.

Source: Neowin

Everything Valve Does is Because of Steam

While Valve and Steam are actually two separate entities, they do have the same parent company and sometimes we wonder what Valve is thinking when the try different products, games and technologies. The truth is that Valve is thinking about Steam. It's always all about Steam. Pushing their online store and community makes sense as whatever games they sell, they get a cut. The are trying to be Apple's App Store for gamers. So far, they are leading the charge.

Maybe you didn't know, but Valve generates a ton of revenue from Steam. It's not clear exactly how much, so here's some context for that assertion:
  • The most current numbers on Steam usage are from last week, with 125 million "active accounts" -- that's not total accounts, but accounts being used with some regularity.
  • The Steam library is around 4,500 games, depending on what you count (that number excludes game add-ons and non-game software -- thanks to Ars Technica's Kyle Orland and his Steam Gauge database for this number).
  • Valve gets approximately 30 percent of each sale made on Steam.


30% is the reason why they are all about Steam.

Source: Engadget

Windows 10 Build 10036 Details Emerge

Windows 10 is coming along nicely, and while the latest updates broke my test rig for gaming at VulcLAN over the weekend, it really is a nice improvement and a big change from Windows 8.1. While many of the changes are cosmetic, they are nice changes indeed. Take a look at the video below to see the updated Start Menu for this build as well as System Tray changes and more.


VulcLAN 2015

All of us here at BCCHardware.com would like to thank everyone who was able to come out to the 13th annual VulcLAN LAN party. 4 days of video games are in the books and everyone survived (I think). Once again we couldn't have done it without all of our amazing sponsors (check them all out here), as well as all of the dedicated people who come out year after year and make the event a continual success. We had a bunch of new faces in the crowd this year and are looking forward already to seeing them again next year. Anyone who has ever attended a LAN party probably knows that the gaming comes second to all of the socializing with fellow gamers and VulcLAN is no exception. 

Thanks for the good times everyone, we'll see you again in 2016! - BCCHardware Staff

57-storey tower in 19 days

This isn't really the 'normal' type of front page news here at BCCHardware, however, anytime a company can build a 57-storey tower in 19 days (and have a video to prove it) they get front page coverage. News.com.au has the full storey or you can watch the timelapse video below.


Apple saying goodbye to competitors

Now that Apple is getting into the 'fitness wearables', the competitors must go from Apple stores. Previously Apple was selling products from Fitbit, Nike, and Jawbone, but those have been disappearing from the Apple stores so that customers won't be reminded of the competing products. This move isn't too surprising, however, severing the ties with companies like Nike is a bit awkward seeing as Tim Cook sits on their board of directors... Recode has more details.

Apple may soon stop selling the popular Fitbit devices, as it clears the way for its own wearable technology product set to launch sometime next year, according to sources.

It’s unclear exactly why Apple will no longer sell the devices, which track steps and other health metrics, in its retail stores. But the move comes a week after Fitbit issued a statement saying it was still “evaluating integration with HealthKit,” Apple’s new software application that acts as a central repository for health and fitness data on iPhones.

Snapchat worth even more

Snapchat has secured another round of investements, this time from Alibaba and for the cool amount of $200 million. Thanks to this 'small' investment it would bring the value of Snapchat up to $15 billion bucks. In 2013 Snapchat turned down $3 billion dollars from interested investors and while many questioned the decision it appears like they made the right decision. CNET has more on this story.

Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba has made an investment in Snapchat that could value the ephemeral message service at $15 billion, sources confirmed Wednesday.

Alibaba has invested $200 million in the startup, which specializes in messages that vanish after they are read, according to people with knowledge of the situation. The valuation makes the startup one of the top three venture capitalist-backed startups, tied for third with software and services company Palantir behind smartphone manufacturer Xiaomi and car service Uber.

The New Macbook is Mostly Batteries

On Monday, Apple hosted an event and launched a couple of new products - one being of course the Apple Watch and the other product is a new Macbook refresh. This is an interesting product as it's not quite a Macbook Air and it certainly isn't a Macbook Pro. It is powered by a Core M processor and has up to 8GB of RAM and 512GB of storage. The interesting thing is that the components inside are pretty much all batteries. The motherboard, RAM, storage and processor are about as big as a Nexus 5.

There’s no denying that this new MacBook is an impressive piece of engineering, but don’t let that divert your attention away from the potential lack of performance your $1,299 or $1,599 buys. You’ve got a 1.1/1.2GHz dual-core chip running a Retina resolution display, and it’s going to be throttled when running on battery.

Source: Geek

What Does 'All Day' Battery Life Mean on the Apple Watch?

Apple showed off their new watch anc claimed it has "all day" battery life that will get you through a 18-hour day. That's a pretty vague statement though and people are concerned if that means you can leave it on your wrist - or if it will actually be usable for 18-hours. In the end, the battery life is actually pretty decent, but I don't think it will warrant the $549 price tag for a nice looking watch.

Testing conducted by Apple in March 2015 using preproduction Apple Watch and software paired with an iPhone using preproduction software with a call placed from Apple Watch. Battery life varies by use, configuration, and many other factors; actual results will vary.

Source: Apple

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