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Xbox Music Heads to Xbox Today

Microsoft has officially killed the Zune brand and replaced it with the Xbox Music brand.  This new service launches today and if you want to enjoy it on your Xbox, you'll need a Live Gold account as well as (eventually) an Xbox Music Pass.  This will cost the same $9.99 / month or $99.90 / year that the streaming-only Zunepass cost.  There will be a 30 day trial for your box, and yes it will be coming to Windows 8, Windows 8 Tablets and Windows Phone 8 as well.  The only upside here is that if you want desktop streaming, that will be free.  It will be ad-supported, but will be free.  Engadget has a look at this service if you want more information.

The whole shebang is tied directly to your Microsoft login, mirroring settings and library data on all your devices (Xbox 360 included) accross the cloud. That same concept applies to playback, as you can pause a song on one device and pick it up right where you left off on another.

Xbox Music

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Why Everyone Hates Zynga

We have posted a few Zynga stories over the past year and Zynga have been pretty closely watched as they have risen and now begun to fall. Buzzfeed takes a closer look at Zynga (which is still the world's most successful gaming company) and tries to figure out why everyone is so happy that they are begining to collapse.

Zynga, the social gaming juggernaut whose games are played by over 50 million people a day, may well be the most reviled big company to emerge from the frothy whirlpool of money, ego and talent that's opened up in Silicon Valley over the last few years. Its much-talked-about $200 million acquisition of Draw Something creator OMGPop was a defining moment, one that crystallized for many the sense that we were in the middle of another tech bubble. As Draw Something's user numbers fell, Zynga and its ability to create hit games became subject to a whole new level of scrutiny.

iPad Mini likely to be released Oct.23

The new iPad Mini has been creating rumors for quite some time now but it looks like on October 23rd we will finally see what all the fuss has been about. The date isn't official yet but Apple has an event planned which coincidently is 3 days before Microsoft released Windows 8. This date would also make it possible for Apple to have the iPad Mini available for Christmas shoppers. AllThingsD has more details.

As AllThingsD reported in August, Apple will hold a special event this month, at which it will showcase a new, smaller iPad. People familiar with Apple’s plans tell us that the company will unveil the so-called “iPad mini” on Oct. 23 at an invitation-only event.

That’s a Tuesday, not a Wednesday, so this is a bit of a break with recent tradition. It also happens to be just three days prior to the street date for Microsoft’s new Surface tablet and two days before Apple reports earnings for its latest quarter.

OnLive sold for $4.8 Million

OnLive this week has sent a letter to it's creditors saying that it has been sold for a mere $4.8 Million dollars. This is a big drop as the streaming gaming service was once valued at more than a Billion dollars but thanks to a bunch of debt and slower than anticipated adoption OnLive really never took off like expected. The OnLive service will continue and it sounds like users won't notice much chance right away. TechSpot has the story.

A letter from OnLive’s assignee that was sent to creditors reveals the company and all of its assets were sold for just $4.8 million. The document indicates the sale took place a few days before massive layoffs essentially gutted the streaming game company.

Android 4.2 Shows Up

It appears that Android 4.2 "Key-Lime Pie" is on the horizon as it has shown it's face in Google Analytics data and there are some benchmark numbers floating around as well.  The Nexus 7 tablet will likely be the first device to get the upgrade and we could expect it pretty much anytime.  Here's hoping that if Key-Lime Pie comes to older devices such as the Nexus S or Galaxy Nexus, that it fixes some of the performance issues brought about by the Jellybean upgrade.

The Google Analytics screenshot below shows us that Android 4.2 was being tested as early as mid-August, with a spike easily spotted in early October when we reported on the findings of Android and Me, which were proven fake. We registered 48 hits from Android 4.2 devices during that timeframe, with 90% of them being new visits.

New iPod Touch Teardown

The new iPod Touch is now available and the guys over at iFixit decide they'd really like to see whats inside of it. If you are also curious and don't want to risk breaking yours by tearing it apart you can check out their work over here.

We got our hands on Apple's new iPod Touch. First thing we do: get inside to see just how much "funner" the new generation is compared to the older generations.

Lenovo passes HP

When it comes to PC manufacturing, Lenovo is now #1 as they've now passed HP to claim the #1 spot. While not as dominant in North American markets, Lenovo has done quite well in the rest of the world and has grown their sales by almost 10% while HP's sales declined by over 16%. ZDNet has more on this as well as all of the numbers.

Lenovo stared Hewlett-Packard in the face, and HP blinked.

The Chinese PC maker beat the leading American PC maker to take the top slot for PC shipments in the third quarter of 2012, according to preliminary figures from market research firm Gartner. 

HP has held the top spot continuously since the fourth quarter of 2006.

LG's rumored Nexus

The rumor of the day comes from the LG camp as it appears they have been working on a Nexus phone for Google. This version of the Nexus phone is sporting a 4.7 Inch screen and will be running a quad-core Snapdragon CPU. Not much else is known about this phoone and if it will ever even be released but Engadget has some pictures of a prototype that has been spotted.

While Google and LG have kept quiet on the subject of any prospective Nexus phone, the leaky ship that is the LG E960 "Mako" popped another hole today as Belarusian site Onliner.by has apparently gotten its hands on a prototype unit.

Crysis 3 Mutliplayer Introduction

Check out the new multiplayer introduction for Crysis 3.  I'm not all that excited about the game, but they eyecandy looks cool for sure.

 

Balmer Says Microsoft Will Be A Hardware Company

Steve Ballmer says that Microsoft is prepared to change their focus a bit and there will be a fundamental shift in their business.  They will be building devices when they need to - and this pretty much confirms that a Microsoft Phone is coming.  If this looks anything like the ZuneHD, I'm all for Microsoft to build hardware.  They can and have done a good job in the past.  The Verge has more details.

"There will be times when we build specific devices for specific purposes," explains Ballmer. "In all our work with partners and on our own devices, we will focus relentlessly on delivering delightful, seamless experiences across hardware, software and services."

 

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