Steve Dent, Engadget

Steve Dent


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Recent articles by Steve:

Microsoft's Family Safety app combines screen time and location tracking

With the latest 365 rollout, Microsoft has introduce a new mobile app designed to help parents keep track of their kids (and each other) both online and in real life. Microsoft Family Safety can not only watch your kids' screen time, but also share their locations, monitor their driving habits and more. → Read More

AI transforms 'The Great British Bakeoff' into a horror show

Artificial intelligence (AI) can do astonishing things when given specific jobs, but it's terrible at understanding context -- something we've seen before in this series. Thanks to a new experiment inspired by The Great British Bakeoff (GBBO), we can again witness the tragedy of AI stepping outside its lane. Researcher Janelle Shane trained NVIDIA's StyleGan 2 system on images of the show's… → Read More

Samsung's 4K OLED Chromebook arrives on April 6th for $999

When Samsung's Galaxy Chromebook arrived at CES 2020 with a beautiful body and 13.3-inch 4K OLED display, we were smitten. Now, it's finally set to arrive at Best Buy in the US on April 6th starting at $999 (in Fiesta Red or Mercury Gray), according to a Best Buy listing and The Verge. → Read More

Planet Computers' Astro Slide is a smartphone and PDA in one

Planet Computers is continuing to build very unique physical keyboard smartphones with the launch of its latest flagship, the crowdfunded Astro Slide. It's a phone with surprisingly robust specs, but the key trick is that it can be used either as a standard 6.53-inch touchscreen smartphone or as a PDA, thanks to the "RockUp" slide hinge mechansm. → Read More

Planet Computers' slider smartphone has a physical keyboard and 5G

Planet Computers is continuing to build very unique physical keyboard smartphones with the launch of its latest flagship, the crowdfunded Astro Slide. It's a phone with surprisingly robust specs, but the key trick is that it can be used either as a standard 6.53-inch touchscreen smartphone or as a PDA, thanks to the "RockUp" slide hinge mechansm. → Read More

Dyson to manufacture 15,000 ventilators following UK call for help

Many companies have offered to build much-needed ventilators during the COVID-19 pandemic crisis, notably GM, Ford and Tesla. However, Dyson has now stepped up to the plate and the UK company known for vacuum cleaners and fans might have an edge over other non-ventilator makers. It developed the "CoVent" device in just ten days using Dyson's current digital motor technology, according to CNN,… → Read More

Google Duo's group video limit rises to 12 people just at the right time

With many of us cooped up at home to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, video calls have become a rare lifeline to friends and family. To that end, Google has updated its popular Duo chat app by increasing the group video user limit from eight to 12. That'll make calls more of a party, as you join up with loved ones to share news and commiserate. → Read More

Hubble captures the immense 'tsunami' power of quasars

Powered by supermassive black holes that consume huge amounts of galactic material, quasars are some of the most energetic objects in the universe. How energetic? Some of them shine up to 1,000 times brighter than the galaxies that house them. Now, a team of astronomers has used the Hubble Space Telescope to examine several large quasars, and what they found was mind-boggling. Some quasars act… → Read More

An enterprise SSD flaw will brick hardware after exactly 40,000 hours

Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) has warned that certain SSD drives could fail catastrophically if buyers don't take action soon. Due to a firmware bug, the products in question will be bricked exactly 40,000 hours (four years, 206 days and 16 hours) after the SSD has entered service. "After the SSD failure occurs, neither the SSD nor the data can be recovered," the company warned in a customer… → Read More

Polestar 2 EV production starts in China despite COVID-19

While factories in Europe and the US grind to a halt due to COVID-19, Polestar has started production of its Polestar 2 in Luqiao, China. The Volvo brand's first EV is being built on the same production line as the Volvo XC40, as both companies are owned by Chinese automaker Geely. The first vehicles produced will be sold in Europe, with deliveries slated to start in China, then North America… → Read More

Fujifilm X100V review: The best compact street photography camera

Over the last year, Fujifilm has toppled its APS-C rival Sony with some of the best mirrorless cameras out there, including the X-T3 and X-Pro3. Now, it's focusing on its ultra-popular compact street photography series with the launch of the X100V. Fuijfilm is throwing all its latest tech at this model, adding a new higher-resolution 26.1-megapixel sensor and faster X-Processor 4 borrowed from… → Read More

Xiaomi's Redmi K30 Pro touts flagship specs at a mid-range price

Xiaomi has unveiled the Redmi K30 Pro that offers a lot of power for the money -- but only in China, so far. A sequel to the K20 Pro (aka the Mi 9T Pro in Europe), the K30 Pro packs a Snapdragon 865 processor with built-in 5G support, along with a circular, quad-camera array and pop-up 20-megapixel selfie camera. → Read More

Apple's App Store is coming to 20 more countries

Apple is planning the largest expansion of its App Store since 2012 by adding 20 new countries, according to an article on its developer portal. The company asked developers to log into their accounts to accept the latest license terms so their apps will be available in those regions. Apple didn't say when the rollout would begin, but it asked devs to update their info by no later than April… → Read More

Facebook opens Messenger to help governments offer coronavirus advice

Argentina's Ministry of Health is one of the first to launch a Messenger experience using the new program. It enlisted to create an app that can "answer questions from the public about coronavirus and ... provide fast, reliable and official advice 24 hours a day," Facebook wrote. It said that UNICEF and Pakistan's Ministry of National Health Services are also using Messenger to… → Read More

Huawei built an app to help people sideload popular Android apps

According to a description in the app, it could be used with the "Mate 30 series, P40 series and Mate X's." With the P40 set to go on sale soon, the app could be officially released with the launch of that phone. Sales of the Mate 30 outside of China were very slow, so Huawei is no doubt trying anything to boost the P40. An XDA contributor in Germany sideloaded the app to his Huawei Mate 30 Pro… → Read More

YouTube follows Netflix by reducing video stream quality in Europe

Most countries in Europe have introduced confinement measures to slow the spread of COVID-19, so folks cooped up at home will be seeking entertainment options. As such, EU industry czar Thierry Breton has asked streaming platforms to reduce video quality in order to keep the internet running smoothly. Breton personally spoke to both Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai and YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki,… → Read More

Conan O'Brien will shoot full-length shows using an iPhone and Skype

The idea came about after O'Brien and staff produced several short videos for social media and realized the same tech could be employed for a full show. "We have a staff that wants to work, that doesn't want to not get paid, and you just want to keep the business going," Conan executive producer Jeff Ross told Variety. So far, it seems that Conan will be the first late-night show to attempt… → Read More

Hello Games' The Last Campfire arrives this summer

We haven't heard much about the adorable adventure short The Last Campfire since Hello Games first revealed it in 2018. Now, the No Man's Sky developer has announced that it will arrive on multiple platforms sometime this summer. As we saw during a Switch preview of the game, it's a much more intimate title than No Many's Sky, with handcrafted artwork, a cute main character and a story with a… → Read More

AMD's efficient Ryzen 9 CPUs target Intel's gaming laptop crown

The latest H-series chips go a bit beyond what we've seen with AMD's 8-core 4800U mobile chips when it comes to overclocking, with clock speeds topping out at 4.4 Ghz. At the same time, it packs the same powerful graphics performance. The 7-nanometer Vega engine already boosts integrated graphics performance by up to 59 percent per core, and the Ryzen 9 4900H/4900HS chips have eight cores, while… → Read More

SpaceX aborts Falcon 9 launch with rare 'Liftoff! Disregard' sequence

Apparently, the launch was aborted automatically by the Falcon 9's onboard computer after it detected a Merlin 1D engine issue. During the commentary, SpaceX supervisor Michael Andrews noted that it had a "condition regarding engine power that caused us to abort today's launch." SpaceX later added, via a tweet: "Standing down today; standard auto-abort triggered due to out-of-family data during… → Read More