Thecus N5550 5-Bay NAS

ROCCAT Kave XTD Headset

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App Pick - AirDroid

Thecus N5550 5-Bay NAS Review

We have just posted up our review of the Thecus N5550 5-Bay NAS Server. This is a very affordable 5-bay unit that takes the term NAS to a whole new level. While it comes pretty bare with the OS, there are hundreds of add-ons that make it truly stand out. When you combine great features with fantastic performance, it's hard not to call this anything other than a winner. Take a look at our review for all the details.

At the end of the day the Thecus N5550 is a very solid product. What it lacks in smooth and polished web interface it makes up for in performance, value and in features. It is one of the most feature-packed NAS units we've seen and comes it at a lower price point than many 4-Bay NAS units without a display. The hardware under the hood is very comparable as well and you're not giving up any performance when you choose this unit as your main file storage server.

Thecus N5550

$149 Windows 8.1 Tablet Revealed

You read the headline right. Microsoft and Archos have teamed up to bring you a $149 Windows 8.1 (not RT) tablet that should actually be adequate for many users. If you are using your tablet for surfing the web, sending emails, and playing casual games as well as watching movies, the new 80 Cesium could be exactly what you're looking for. At $149, you can't really expect much, but this little unit packs in a quad-core Intel CPU and 1280x800 resolution. No word yet on battery life, storage or RAM, but you won't be using this at the next VulcLAN.

In fact, you can put any application on here and that could be an issue as consumers see these devices as Windows, so they should be able to run all of their desktop applications. If consumers take the mindset that these are desktop capable machines, Windows, at this price point, could turn off users to the platform if they perceive Windows to be slow or unable to run their applications.

Source: Neowin

MSN Messenger Shutting Down Last Zones

Microsoft is finally shutting down Microsoft Messenger in mainland China as they have now completely fazed out their messenging app in favor of Skype. China was one of the last countries to hold onto it, but even that is going away. MSN was the first messenging app that I used and later I moved to ICQ/Trillian for a while. Either way, I'm a bit sad to see it go as this is some internet nostalgia that won't be returning.

Many Chinese users of Windows Live Messenger, more commonly referred to as MSN in short in China, have received an email which says the service will close down on October 31st (two months away) in mainland China. To encourage Chinese users to migrate to Skype, the online calling service Microsoft acquired in 2011, each of them will get 2 dollar worth of a coupon for Skype calls.

Source: TechNode

Dells Curved Monitor Makes You a Better Gamer

If you need a better monitor to make you a better gamer you're either really, REALLY good or you suck so bad you need to find any excuse. Dell can come to your rescue either way as they have just shown off their new Ultrasharp 34-inch U3415W display that packs in a wide 3440x1440 resolution to make your widescreen gaming dreams come true. 

Dell says that the monitor's wide field of view mated with its curves will give gamers a leg up on the competition because, compared to flat monitors, less eye movement is needed to take advantage of the player's peripheral vision. Intrigued to test that claim? You can do so come this December.

Source: Engadget

WiFi Routers Are Still Vulnerable

As long as people are willing to be mischievous and cause trouble, there will be security exploits and the latest affecting many WiFi routers has been shown off by Oxcite, a Swiss Security Firm. In this attack, they take advantage of the PIN required for WPS setup and then are able to actually "guess" the correct PIN on the very first try. Hacking the router literally takes one second. Whoops.

A vendor implementation that improperly generates random numbers is more susceptible to attack, and it appears as though this is the case with at least two devices," she said in a statement. "It is likely that the issue lies in the specific vendor implementations rather than the technology itself. As the published research does not identify specific products, we do not know whether any Wi-Fi certified devices are affected, and we are unable to confirm the findings.

Source: ArsTechnica

Snapchat hits $10 Billion

Snapchat needed a little more cash and opened itself up for another round of funding from venture capitalists and as a result of the last round of funding has hit a $10 Billion dollar valuation. As of right now Snapchat isn't making any money so raising this money is critical as they work on ways of making money off the Snapchat brand. It seems like the valuation of $10 Billion is crazy, especially for a company that hasn't made any money. It is hard to determine value anymore with some of the crazy buyouts we've seen over the past year or two and now even Microsoft is being to the long list of companies rumored to be interested in acquiring Snapchat. TechCrunch has the story.

We also keep hearing the company is in the process of raising another round of funding. According to one source, the raise will be an over-$100 million Series D to follow the $50 million Series C led by Coatue Management last fall. The new round would value the company at $10 billion, according to our sources.

PS4 and Xbox One are already dated

Crytek's engineers (the ones that just made Crysis 3) are pretty proud of their upcoming game looks on high end hardware, unfortunately they can't run it at full detail on the "next generation" consoles due to the "dated" hardware. It's not surprising that game makers are already making these comments as both the Xbox One and PS4 are both using regular computer components that aren't so impressive when you stack them up against "gaming" computers. I think the fact that consoles makers can't keep up with computer makers is probably a good thing for PC gamers who want the best graphics.

During this year’s SIGGRAPH, Crytek’s Nicolas Schulz and Theodor Mader finally admitted how much more powerful high-end PCs were compared to both current-gen consoles at launch. Obviously this isn’t surprising at all, but it’s at least good to see developers admitting what we already knew.

As Crytek’s Rendering Engineers revealed, when both Xbox One and PS4 were already dated the moment they came out.

“Console hardware was considerably less powerful than high-end PCs at launch” reads Crytek’s SIGGRAPH 2014 presentation.

Upcoming wearable technology

Smartwatches and VR headsets and pretty much any other type of wearable technology have been dominating the headlines for pretty much the entire year. Gadget Advisor has compiled a list of some of the most talked about upcoming wearable technology that you can expect to see hitting store shelves later this year.

Wearable technology has steadily been going mainstream, especially over these past two years. In fact, if you go by market figures, wearable technology may be the next big thing- just like smartphones were in 2008.To put it into perspective, the market value of wearable tech was a measly 6.3 million in 2010. In 2014, this valuegrew by leaps and bounds to reach a staggering (estimated) $ 5.1 billion.

A lot of money is going into research and development of wearable tech as well. Several companies have come up with a slew of outstanding wearable gadgets this year. Here’s a preview of 10 upcoming wearable technology gadgets that you can expect in 2014

The World's Best Mobile OS

The guys over at Digit have come up with test where they've looked at 1000 different parameters of mobile operating systems and try to come up with a winner in terms of usability and features. iOS and Android are obviously included and they've thrown in Windows Mobile and BlackBerry to round out the competition. 

Also included in the review is the ability to set weightings for the categories that you care about and you can figure out what OS is the perfect OS for you.

Head on over to Digit for the full article.

How do you determine what makes a good OS? What makes iOS vs. Android or Windows Phone vs. BB10, or any other such comparison not just about the fanboyism? Is it even possible to arrive at a scientific conclusion to this question? If we look at entire eco-systems, Android and iOS are obvious choices for buyers because of the sheer amount of apps they have available. However, what’s that got to do with an answer to the question, "What’s the best designed OS out of the box?"

Dropbox drops prices

Cloud storage has become the most popular way to keep your date safe and secure as well as synced between your numerous devices. Microsoft and Google have jumped into the market in a big way and have driven the prices down and now Dropbox (one of the first and most popular choice) is responding by offer 1TB of storage for ~$10 bucks a month (which previously only got you 100GB of storage for the same price). Wired takes a closer look at Dropbox over here.

When I talk to folks at Dropbox, they’re eager to tell me about how different people are using its file-sharing service: the musician, the photographer, the professor, the startup founder. They like to talk about new features, like password-protected links and the remote wipe tool that lets you remove files from a lost computer.

But what they save for the end of our meeting, almost like an afterthought, are the two numbers that traditionally meant the most for a data storage service: how many gigabytes you can store, and at what price.

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