Thecus N5550 5-Bay NAS

ROCCAT Kave XTD Headset

Rosewill Rise Glow

App Pick - Frozen Free Fall

GameStop Actually Values Your Trade-Ins

In a move that makes a bit of sense for the consumer, GameStop is revamping their trade-in system to give you more money for your games. In the past, the trade-in value was so low that you were almost better off throwing your games away instead of wasting gas to drive to the store and swap some games. This change affects different games differently, but in the end, it should put more value toward your next purchase - and that is never a bad thing.

The new system has been confirmed by GameStop's senior VP of pre-owned business Jason Cochran, and has a projected launch date of August 18. This isn't the only new business move that GameStop has made; just last week, it was revealed that GameStop was planning to introduce a high-interest credit card closely tied to its Power-Up Rewards program.

Source: IGN

Origami Robot Builds Itself

I'm not sure why people are in such a hurry to create machines that are going to kill us all, but in the name of "Science" they are doing just that. A week or so ago, we shared a story about a robot that will modify how it moves based on damage taken - so that when you shoot a leg off the darn thing, it can figure out how to chase you. This time around, we have a link to a robot that can fold itself a body and they run. It's pretty amazing, but a little creepy.


How to Stop ATM Card Skimmers

There are several ways to stop ATM card skimming - the first of which is to walk into a bank, talk to a human an get cash from your account. It's weird, but it does work. Another way has recently been developed by Diebold, a company that makes ATM machines and their rotate your card sideways so the magentic strip doesn't slide in past the reader. It's a super simple idea, and it should work until crooks find a way to work with this as well.

With ActivEdge, Diebold has separated the two steps of the card-reading process. First, by having users turn the card sideways, and secondly by reading the magnetic stripe information from that position. "Instead of moving the card over the read head, once it’s inside the card reader, we take the read head and move it across the stripe at 90 degrees,” said Natoli.

Source: ABCNews

EA's Awesome Xbox One Subscription

If you currently own an Xbox One and buy a game or two a month, the new Xbox One subscription service from EA may just be what you're looking for. According to sources, the subscription service is getting better and better as EA has vowed to never remove a game from the library once it has been added. Of course they don't tell you how long "never" is. Still for a decent price, it gives you access to a ton of games that you may not ever play.

“New game additions will be determined by franchise and timing,” Moore said to CVG. “We have to make decisions along that way, so there’s no template, like 30 days after a game ships it goes into the Vault. I think one of the key things is that once a game goes into the Vault it stays there, it’s not going to be taken out, that’s a commitment we’ve made.”

Source: BoyGeniusReport

Linksys WRT1900AC Wireless AC Router

We have just posted up our review of the Linksys WRT1900AC Wireless AC Router. This is Linksys' return to the WRT-Series that made them famous a few years back and we take a look to see if this router has what it takes to win our hearts. It claims pretty fast speeds, a long list of features and it's powered by a 1.2GHz Dual-Core chip. It shouldn't lack power and we find out if it delivers. Check our review for all the details.

Overall the performance and package of the WRT1900AC is very good. Linksys has put their best foot forward in order to try and regain the affection of home and office users worldwide. Their moto with this product is, "Performance, Perfected" and they come very close on a lot of things. The wired performance is great and it comes close to the fastest we've seen. In terms of wireless connectivity the results between this router and my laptop are the best I've seen or experienced.


Microsoft Kills Charms

There really are some good features about Windows 8. One of the features that is awesome is the SSD performance boost you get. One of the other "features" is the Charms menu. While this menu is dynamic to the content you are looking at, it's also confusing and works well only with a touch-screen environment. Even then, it's obscure, odd and awkward at best. Thankfully, Windows 8.1 SP1 (er, Windows 9) will skip this feature and introduce a few other things that make sense to desktop users.

The change was first reported by Windows enthusiast site Winbeta, and The Verge can confirm current builds of Windows Threshold, which is expected to be named Windows 9, do not include the Charms bar. ZDNet reports that "Metro-style" Windows 8 apps will get title bars that include some menus with the Charms components, and developers will need to add features to enable the share Charm.

Source: TheVerge

MIT's Magnetic Hair

Researches and students at MIT have amazing imaginations and the realization that pretty much anything is possible if you put your mind to it. They've just come up with some microscopic magnetic hair that are controlled through an external magnetic field. This can be used for a ton of awesome things - one of which is to make water run uphill.


Moto 360 Early Preview

If you've been eagerly waiting for the Moto 360 before you make a SmartWatch purchase, your wait might just be worth it. According to a leaked review of the aforementioned device, it has a few more features than we expected and the battery life - thankfully - is about "two and a half times" better than the LG G Watch. If that is true, this device should be able to get you a couple of days of light-moderate use and a full day of heavy use. The LG G Watch doesn't last until the afternoon board meeting if you're using it a bunch.

The wireless charging is one of the most comfortable of this object, though in case of emergency is an impractical solution. If the other products you can arrange, bringing in around an extra charger, is a bit 'more difficult to do with the objects with wireless charging. But from the aesthetic point of view, do not have attacks, connectors, any other view is a wonder!

Source: Luca Viscardi

Microsoft Wants Smartphone Screens to Touch You Back

Microsoft wants to make their phones better than anyone else's. They intend on doing this - not with better hardware, or a better operating system, but with haptics. There are ways that haptic feedback technology can be implemented to make it feel that your phone screen has textures, is sticky or smooth and more. This is pretty nifty, but it doesn't strike me as a real selling feature. Of course we've had versions of this for years with keyboard clicks and vibration feedback, but this is a step up from the basics. Apparently, Fujitsu is lining up to make a tablet with this new tech as early as next year.

Several methods can be used to create such feedback. One way is to put a material that bends when charged under a screen to simulate a click, while another uses electrostatic vibration to put a cushion of air under your finger, making a surface feel smooth or sticky. I've experienced such haptic feedback myself, and while some sensations are accurate, others are just weird.

Source: Engadget

WTU Episode #274 - Microsoft Raises the White Flag (Xbox)

We have just posted up Episode #274 of Weekly Tech Update. In this episode we are discussing Samsung losing big in the chip business, Android overtakes iOS in usage stats and Microsoft raises the white flag and drops the price. We have those stories and more and the links below!

Download Episode #274
Show Notes
Subscribe to the feed.
Subscribe in iTunes!

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