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WhatsApp is now home to over 2 billion active users

By Anthony Garreffa | Feb 12, 2020 10:45 pm CST

WhatsApp is now home to a whopping 2 billion active users, with the Facebook-owned company taking to an official blog post for the announcement.

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The company took the time in the blog post to underline its end-to-end encryption and privacy of eveyr message, with WhatsApp explaining: "Strong encryption acts like an unbreakable digital lock that keeps the information you send over WhatsApp secure, helping protect you from hackers and criminals. Messages are only kept on your phone, and no one in between can read your messages or listen to your calls, not even us. Your private conversations stay between you".

The company continues, saying that strong encryption is a "necessity in modern life. We will not compromise on security because that would make people less safe. For even more protection, we work with top security experts, employ industry leading technology to stop misuse as well as provide controls and ways to report issues - without sacrificing privacy".

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New PlatinumGames mystery teaser has fans buzzing

By Derek Strickland | Feb 3, 2020 03:30 pm CST

UPDATE: PlatinumGames confirms the 4 is in reference to how many projects it's currently working on.

PlatinumGames today launched Platinum 4, a mysterious teaser website that has lots of implications.

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Platinum fans across the world are buzzing about the new site and what it could mean. It's possibly a throwback to 2002's Capcom Five, indicating PlatinumGames currently has up to four major games in development (Astral Chain sequels, a new IP, Bayonetta 3, and Babylon's Fall).

It's likely the website has everything to do with Platinum's new self-publishing ambitions. The Bayonetta dev just received a hefty investment from Chinese juggernaut Tencent that'll allow autonomy over future IPs.

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Dead Cells publisher says the Android version will release late 2020

By Jak Connor | Jan 10, 2020 01:04 am CST

Dead Cells has already made its way over to the App Store for iOS devices, but when is the Android version coming out?

The news of Dead Cells coming over to mobile dates back to last May, where the developer and publisher announced that both iOS devices would be getting the Metroidvania game. iOS devices were blessed with the extremely hard title first over the Summer, and since then, Android users have been patiently waiting for a release date announcement.

Luckily, Android Police has hawk eyes and spotted a Tweet from the game's publisher, Playdigious, who said that the "Android version will be out Q3 2020". The Tweet also mentions that the developers are currently working on a content update, but its unfortunately still too early in the process to announce a release date.

Snapchat's newest feature uses deepfake technology to have fun

By Jak Connor | Jan 6, 2020 05:20 am CST

Snapchat has decided to integrate deepfake technology into its app, but instead of framing people for blackmail purposes like most other deepfake technology, Snapchat wants people to have fun.

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This integration of deepfake technology has come under the guise of Snapchat Cameo's, which are AI-generated videos that require a simple selfie to be enabled. Snapchat will use its AI tech to add your face to over 150 videos that can be sent to your friends for a myriad of reasons.

Unlike the commonly controversial deepfake technology, Snapchat nips that problem in its bud by only allowing users to send deepfaked faces on videos that they have selected. Ruling out any possibility of seeing your face on something that you did not agree to in the first place. If you are interested in playing around with Cameos, a step-by-step guide can be found below.

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Here's a Smart Thermometer that will cook your meat perfectly

By Jak Connor | Jan 6, 2020 01:20 am CST

Don't you just hate it when you are salivating for that piece of meat you have in the oven, then you take it out, and it's cooked poorly? That's most likely due to the temperature you had the oven at.

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Whirpool is aiming to solve that problem for you with their new Smart Thermometer that uses special sensors to tell chefs and cooks alike what the temperature of not only the oven but also the meat. The Smart Thermometer tells users what the temperatures are through a mobile app, saving users the time and the heat of periodically checking the oven.

To take things to the next level, the Smart Thermometer will connect directly with Whirlpool ovens with an update in 2020. This update will allow users to adjust the oven temperature based on-the-fly based on the recipe you have decided to cook. Whirlpool will be releasing its Smart Thermometer sometime in early 2020 for $129.

Capcom do gamers a solid by delaying the new Mega Man X mobile game

By Jak Connor | Jan 1, 2020 04:20 am CST

If you didn't know, Capcom is currently hard at work making a Mega Man mobile game. Originally this mobile game was meant to release late in 2019. Unfortunately, that didn't happen.

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While it is unfortunate that we didn't get the release of what has been titled as Mega Man X DiVE in 2019, it was for a good reason. Capcom has announced that instead of releasing a half-baked game, they will instead be spending some extra time making some optimization changes.

The current gaming scene is littered with developers releasing games that are poorly optimized and barely finished. So, seeing a developer owning up to what could be better is certainly a grand sight in gamers' eyes. I think I can speak on behalf of many gamers out there by saying that we would much rather wait for a completed titled then receive a title that is half-finished. Mega Man X DiVE is now expected to launch in the "First Quarter of 2020".

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Streaming has consumed 80% of the US music market, was just 7% in 2010

By Jak Connor | Jan 1, 2020 02:27 am CST

Music streaming has taken over the US music market. Organizations are now saying it accounts for 80% of the market, compared to only accounting for 7% back in 2010.

The Recording Industry Association of America or RIAA for short has released some new decade long statistics onto their official Twitter page. The RIAA says that over the course of the decade, streaming has become the staple way of accessing music in the music market, surpassing physical media by a landslide.

The above image shows that back in 2010, physical music took the lions share of the market at 52%, digital downloads took 38%, and streaming only had 7%. Now, looking at the 2019 data, streaming has basically eaten physical music, reducing it down to just 9% of the market, while streaming sits strongly at 80%. The increase in streaming is no doubt a result of many more Americans now having a smartphone and downloading apps such as Spotify or Apple Music.

TikTok banned from any government-issued phone under 'security threat'

By Jak Connor | Dec 22, 2019 12:35 am CST

TikTok is without a doubt spreading like wildfire, but if you are a member of the US Navy and want to enjoy some short, quirky videos, don't hold your breath.

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Reuters has reported that the United States Navy has banned the use of TikTok on any government-issued mobile devices. Why have they done this? Allegedly, the app's software created by ByteDance poses a "cybersecurity threat" to personal information.

Pentagon spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Uriah Orland didn't specify what this "cybersecurity threat" was, but he did warn all Navy troops to be very mindful of the app, and asked everyone to "safeguard their personal information." Orland also said that this ban was an effort to "address existing and emerging threats". Due to TikTok being owned by Chinese company ByteDance, the US military could be safeguarding their hardware from potential information scraping software that could be in TikTok.

Twitter trolls cause seizures in epileptic users with flashing videos

By Jak Connor | Dec 19, 2019 02:47 am CST

The Epilepsy Foundation has filed an official criminal complaint with law enforcement agencies for what they consider as attacks on users with epilepsy.

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According to the report, Twitter trolls have been using the Epilepsy Foundation Twitter handle as a way of distributing flashing videos or strobing lights to a number of people with epilepsy. The Epilepsy Foundation says that these posts, which are photosensitive visual patterns, were posted to trigger epileptic people into seizures.

Jacqueline French, M.D., chief medical and innovation officer of the Epilepsy Foundation and professor of Neurology at NYU Langone Health's Comprehensive Epilepsy Center said, "Flashing lights at certain intensities or certain visual patterns can trigger seizures in those with photosensitive epilepsy. While the population of those with photosensitive epilepsy is small, the impact can be quite serious. Many are not even aware they have photosensitivity until they have a seizure."

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Instagram rolls out new collage layout feature to Instagram Stories

By Jak Connor | Dec 18, 2019 04:16 am CST

Instagram has just rolled out a new feature for the layout section of Instagram Stories. This new feature will allow users to create a cool collage.

The news was announced via the official Instagram Twitter account, which says that users can now capture and share multiple photos in their stories. The new update adds a collage feature that allows users to choose between two and six photos to combine together.

Instagram are continuously thinking of new innovative ways to keep its userbase using their stories section and not go back over to Snapchat. Or on the other side of the fence - attract Snapchat users over to Instagram. Instagram will no doubt, continue to add new features to their layout section, that will be designed to attract new users and keep their regular ones.