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  1. Samsung has accustomed us to releasing specific versions of its flagship devices to celebrate the Olympics, such as the S7 and Note 8 limited editions. This year is no exception as the company has partnered with Japanese carrier NTT Docomo to unveil a special Olympics Games Edition S10+ to celebrate the 2020 Tokyo Games. The device's internals are exactly the same as the original one, but its design has been adapted to boast the Tokyo 2020 logo on the back. Unfortunately, it's only available in Prism White, which has a glass back and not the ceramic coating, a somewhat disappointing choice for a special edition. In addition to the phone itself, Samsung is bundling a pair of Galaxy Buds that sport the same emblem to match the phone. The Olympics Games Edition S10+ should be available in Japan at the end of July for ¥114,696 (approximately $1,000), which gives buyers enough time to get accustomed to their phones before the games. For the time being, it's unclear whether the handset's availability will be extended to the rest of the world, or if Samsung will hand one out to every Olympian as it did for the previous two editions. We'll keep you posted as we learn more about this device, although we still have plenty of time to do so before the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.
  2. Microsoft and Sony usually battle it out for dominance in console video games. But in the growing realm of cloud gaming, in which games stream over the internet just as Netflix does, the two tech titans have decided to team up. Their collaboration, announced on Thursday, focuses on developing improved cloud delivery of games and other content, as well as delivery of Sony's current services using Microsoft Azure data center platform. The two companies will also join forces on developing smart image sensors using Sony's sensor capabilities and Microsoft's artificial intelligence technology. Both Microsoft and Sony currently deliver digital games via their own subscription services. Games delivered via cloud computing networks appear to be the next evolutionary stage for video games. Microsoft is expected to begin public testing of its Project xCloud game-streaming service later this year. Google plans to launch its Stadia cloud gaming service later this year, and Electronic Arts is working on its own streaming service, too. 'Minecraft' refreshed: Latest 'Minecraft' update means new blocks, better villages, and pillagers with crossbows A new 'Minecraft': Upcoming 'Minecraft Earth' to offer AR experience like 'Pokemon Go' Amazon, which owns the Twitch video game streaming platform, is reportedly developing its own game streaming service as well, and Chinese internet company and game maker Tencent is testing its own system, too. "Sony needed an infrastructure partner to remain competitive as cloud gaming and cloud services start to gain traction," said Piers Harding-Rolls, director and head of games research and lead AR/VR analyst for IHS Markit in a commentary on the Microsoft-Sony deal. "Microsoft has deep expertise in relation to games service deployment in Azure and it is building out its own cloud gaming service in Azure – it is likely this has an impact on Sony’s thinking when deciding on a partner." What does this mean for video game players? Not much today, but eventually playing video games might not require a $300 to $500 console and discs or cartridges. Microsoft already brought to market earlier this month a $249.99 Xbox One S system that has a 1TB hard drive to store downloaded games, but no Blu-ray disc drive. And players could eventually be able to play nearly all games together and against friends, even if they have different game systems, says David Pucik, vice president of gaming and digital strategy at market research firm Magid. (This has begun to be more prevalent with some titles including the po[CENSORED]r game "Fortnite," playable across Xbox, PlayStation, Nintendo Switch and mobile devices.) While the revenue-sharing and licensing issues would still need to be resolved for wider cross-platform play, "a Sony-Microsoft backend collaboration could make this process vastly simpler, a matter of flipping a digital switch," Pucik said. True cross-platform play means you could play one game across an Xbox, PlayStation or smartphone whether you are at home, at work or on the go – allowing you to save your progress in your cloud version of the game regardless of the device. "The conversation around cross-platform among highly engaged gamers suggests very clearly that the gaming public is only going to increasingly look for more seamless, integrated, less friction-full approaches to gaming, and this collaboration is a strong step to potentially being able to deliver that," he said. More ads could be added to games Free-to-play video games have become a major market force. For better or worse, cloud games could expand that as it will be easier for advertisers and publishers to integrate ads into games. Games made on discs give advertisers limited opportunities because they could not be updated in real-time, says Anne Hunter, an executive vice president of strategy and growth with research and consulting firm Kantar. "With streaming, in-game advertising has the opportunity to align to specific campaigns and ultimately use techniques such as audience targeting pervasive in other digital platforms. Increased speed and innovative sensors will also open up new ad formats in gaming not yet imagined." A potential loser? Retailers Just as the Microsoft-Sony partnership will escalate the cloud gaming competition, so will it bring more pressure on brick-and-mortar retailers already buffeted by gamers' embrace of digital downloads. "This will have a real impact on already embattled gaming retailers such as GameStop as well as on big-box stores like Walmart and Best Buy, who get foot traffic from physical game title shopping," Hunter said. For now, the deal continues Microsoft's momentum in the cloud computing business, where it remains in second place behind Amazon, says Sid Nag, research vice president at research firm Gartner. "Gaming is one application that requires massive amounts of scale, so what better platform than the cloud because it’s potentially scalable to very high capabilities," he said. Sony needs that type of scalability to satisfy its PlayStation audience in the face of Google and Microsoft's own cloud offerings, says Harding-Rolls. Even though its PlayStation Now service is the biggest cloud gaming operator globally with 36% share of the $387-million world cloud gaming market in 2018, "it is exposed in terms of cloud infrastructure and service delivery," he said. "It needs to partner to compete." PlayStation Now ($19.99 monthly, some PS4 games can be downloaded) is an on-demand video game subscription service with more than 750 games developed for PlayStation 2, PS3 and PS4. Sony also operates a broadband-delivered live TV service PlayStation Vue (starts at $44.99 monthly). Microsoft has its own subscription games service, Game Pass, with more than 100 Xbox games for $9.99 per month. Later this year, Game Pass and the Xbox Live Gold online multiplayer network ($9.99 monthly) will be available together for $14.99.
  3. Here we have another example of Hyundai’s halfway-house sporting trim line, applied to the brand’s big-selling family SUV. We first sampled the delights of N-Line last year in the i30, bridging the market gap between the fizzing heat of the i30 N and the stark tepidity of the regular hatchback. This doesn’t apply to the Tucson, however - at least for the time being. Word on the street is that a full-fat Cupra Ateca rival is in the works, but that’s a good year away at the very least. So, if you want a sporty Tucson, here’s your lot for now. Think Volkswagen’s R-Line and Ford’s ST-Line trims to understand the intention. However, perhaps even 'sporty' is an adjective too far for the particular variant we’re testing here: the fleet-friendly 1.6-litre diesel, which is boosted by a recently introduced 48V mild hybrid system. Thankfully, you can also have a 174bhp 1.6-litre turbo petrol engine. Most of the appeal here is visual, then. There’s black detailing everywhere, black 19in alloy wheels, a unique LED daytime running light design and bespoke bumpers. As well as some familiar N brand touches inside, including red leather stitching, there are more supportive seats and the same gearknob as the i30 N. Hyundai claims a bit of dynamic substance here, though; the suspension is lightly tweaked for tighter body control, while the software calibration of the steering is revised with the aim of giving “a more direct, linear feel”. This car is as good as it needs to be, for Hyundai at least, given that most customers in this segment aren’t generally all that fussed about a sparkling driving experience. The standard Tucson is entirely inoffensive to drive, and with the minor changes made under the skin here, there are no great revelations. The diesel engine is the very definition of a modest performer. Its torque advantage over the petrol should give it reasonable reserves of low-down urge, but even though that means you’re not thumping it towards the redline out of every junction, you’ll soon become familiar with the end of the throttle pedal’s travel just to keep up with the pace of rush-hour motorists. Doing so isn’t too unpleasant, because the unit is a good deal more refined than the rattly old 1.7-litre, but it’s hardly thrilling. Given you’ll be stirring it in often, the manual gearbox is at least fairly satisfying to operate. Either way, this doesn’t feel like an appropriate powertrain for a sportified model. As with the multitude of mild hybrid systems we’ve experienced over the past couple of years, the Tucson's operates largely inperceptibly. Hyundai claims the little 0.44kWh battery can provide up to a 16bhp boost to reduce load on the engine, while the stop-start system can cut in below 20mph if it thinks you’re coming to a halt. The N-Line seems the perfect opportunity to finally give the Tucson a chassis set-up that can rival the Seat Ateca for dynamic composure, but subtlety seems to have been the name of the game for Hyundai’s engineers. The springs are 8% stiffer at the rear and just 5% stiffer at the front, we're told, which sounds about as transformative as it actually is. To Hyundai's credit, there’s a fair amount of composure and body control is fine for the most part, but press on and there’s still plenty of vertical motion and a ride that goes from very smooth to a bit unsettled when you find yourself on a rough B-road. You can put some of the blame for this on the bigger wheels. The steering tune is successful enough, however: the quicker response to inputs enhances the Tucson’s feeling of agility on turn-in. Overall, however, there’s nothing to even raise the eyebrow of a keen driver here. Should I buy one? This is not the Tucson to buy. At least not with this powertrain if you want even the slightest illusion of sportiness. The Tucson is a fundamentally fine, if slightly insipid, SUV that sits in the well of acceptable competency alongside cars like the Renault Kadjar and its Kia Sportage sibling. With the diesel engine, it’s frugal and quiet enough, too. But bar a fraction more style and some comfier seats, N-Line doesn’t offer enough to justify the trade-off of a less comfortable ride in base diesel form. Perhaps it does with the petrol engine, though, and at least the trim’s additions don’t add too much to the price. Hyundai Tucson 1.6 CRDi N-Line specification Where Cotswolds, UK Price £27,760 On sale Now Engine 4cyls, 1598cc, turbo, diesel Power 134bhp at 4000rpm Torque 236 ft at 2000-2250rpm Gearbox 6-spd manual Kerb weight 1537kg Top speed 112mph 0-62mph 11.2sec Fuel economy 48.7mpg (WLTP) CO2 113g/km (WLTP) Rivals Seat Ateca FR, Mazda CX-5
  4. This was the best way for Luke Voit to rebound from his recent slump and the best retaliation possible for the drilling that bugged him so much last weekend against the Rays. Voit’s leadoff blast in the ninth inning drew the Yankees within one run and sparked a 4-3 comeback win Friday night at the Stadium, allowing them to leapfrog Tampa Bay into first place in the AL East. “Once that started a fire, I had no doubt in my mind [we would win],” said Voit, who halted an 0-for-22 skid with three hits in the second game of Wednesday’s doubleheader sweep against the Orioles and had three more hits Friday night. “I was in my head about stuff. “After the first game against Baltimore, I just said, ‘Screw it, it can’t get any worse.’ I just have to go back, have fun and smile.” Voit hardly was in a smiling mood last Saturday, when he was plunked with a 95 mph fastball from Rays reliever Yonny Chirinos on the upper left arm — dangerously close to his head — one batter after DJ LeMahieu had blasted a home run. “It’s just up and in on me, it’s the top of my shoulder, it’s frustrating. I am not saying he was or he wasn’t [trying to hit me]. He can hit me anywhere else. It’s just when it is up and in, it’s a sketchy situation that can be career-ending,’’ Voit said after that game. “After giving up the home run, he is probably frustrated and trying to throw as hard as he could and it got away. That’s why I was so pissed off.’’ Voit is in a far better mood after rapping six hits in seven at-bats over his past two games, including a single in Friday’s fourth inning and a double to left in the sixth. With the Yankees trailing 3-1 entering the ninth, Voit clocked Rays closer Jose Alvarado’s first pitch over the wall in right-center for his 11th home run of the season, one behind Gary Sanchez for the team lead. Their fourth straight win was sealed on Gio Urshela’s two-out RBI single over Kevin Kiermaier’s head in center field. “To string together that level of at bats against that guy [Alvarado] was really impressive, and Luke had the big shot to get it going,” Aaron Boone said. “It’s always nice to come back and I feel like we’ve come back so many times. Unbelievable,” Voit said, who now has 25 homers in 81 games as a Yankee since his acquisition from St. Louis last July 28. “This is the funnest team I’ve ever played for.”Night in, night out, it just gets better and better. Just the confidence we have. “We knew we had a chance at 3-1, even though we were facing Alvarado. It doesn’t matter who we’re facing. It’s obviously crazy to think it could happen, but you know what, just keep going.”
  5. Now, as Harry and Meghan mark their first wedding anniversary on May 19, they're new parents, and royal fans are watching for every detail about their son, Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor, born on May 6. Here are five major moments from Harry and Meghan's first year of marriage. 1. Tackling their first overseas tour as a married couple -- with a surprise pregnancy announcement! Meghan and Prince Harry shared the news in October that they were expecting their first child, announcing it at the start of their major royal tour of New Zealand, Australia, Tonga and Fiji. The news of Meghan's pregnancy was the buzz of the 16-day tour that saw the couple attend 70 engagements. They did everything from joining a powhiri, a traditional Maori welcoming ceremony, to walking through a redwoods forest, attending a mental health breakout session on the beach, cheering on athletes at the Invictus Games and meeting koalas. (MORE: Everything you need to know about Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's son Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor) At the end of the tour, Harry and Meghan shared a photo that Harry took of Meghan holding her belly bump under a canopy of redwoods. When Meghan announced her four patronages in January, the first one she visited was Smart Works, a charity focused on helping women. In her first high-profile, solo charity project, Meghan collaborated with women at the Hubb Community Kitchen in West London on a charity cookbook that quickly became a bestseller. Her mom, Doria Ragland, made a rare public appearance in the U.K. in September to be with her daughter for the launch of the cookbook. (MORE: Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, shares new photo on her 1st Mother's Day with royal baby Archie) While on her royal tour Down Under with Harry last year, Meghan marked the 125th anniversary of women's suffrage in New Zealand and touted the importance of equal access to education for women across all four countries of New Zealand, Australia, Tonga and Fiji. Meghan also gained a new role, vice president of the Queen's Commonwealth Trust, that will see her continue her work advocating for women.. Meghan will work particularly with young girls and women in the role, which was announced in March on International Women's Day. The Duchess of Sussex also used her voice in subtle ways too, like when she wrote empowering messages to women while visiting a charity that helps women break free from street sex work and addiction.
  6. Prime Minister Scott Morrison, flanked by his wife Jenny Morrison and daughters Lily Morrison and Abbey Morrison, delivers his victory speech in Sydney on Saturday.Tracey Nearmy/Getty Images Flanked by his wife and daughters, Prime Minister Morrison dedicated his surprise victory to the "quiet Australians." "It's Australians who have worked hard, started a business, started a family, bought a home," he said to loud cheers. "These are the quiet Australians who have won a great victory tonight." Morrison pledged to "get back to work" as soon as possible. "We are an amazing country of amazing people. God bless Australia." Scott Morrison supporters celebrate at the coalition’s election party in Sydney on May 18.Tracey Nearmy/Getty Images Australia Prime Minister Scott Morrison has claimed victory in the 2019 election, with results showing the Liberal National coalition is on track to be returned to government. "I have always believed in miracles," he told jubilant supporters in Sydney. "And tonight we've been delivered another one." It was a stunning turnaround after every opinion poll over the campaign pointed to a Labor victory. Analysts are now saying Labor lost an "unlosable" election. Bill Shorten, with his wife Chloe Shorten, concedes defeat in Melbourne on Saturday.Ryan Pierse/Getty Images Labor leader Bill Shorten has called Prime Minister Scott Morrison to concede defeat. It has been a devastating night for Shorten, who was widely predicted to be giving a victory speech. "I know that you're all hurting, and I am too. And without wanting to hold out any false hope, while there are still millions of votes to count ... it is obvious that Labor will not be able to form the next government," Shorten said, speaking to party supporters in Melbourne. "I'm proud that we argued what was right, not what was easy ... Politics should be the battle of ideas." Shorten announced he would not contest the next Labor leadership ballot after the election. Deputy Tanya Plibersek is among the top candidates to be his successor.