Thurrott Daily: May 31

Posted on May 31, 2016 by Paul Thurrott in Hardware, Microsoft Surface, Mobile, Windows Phones, Xbox, Xbox One with 0

Thurrott Daily: May 31

Tech tidbits from around the web.

5/31/2016 5:25:07 PM

This flying remote control Half-Life 2 City Scanner drone is amazing

If you’re familiar with Half-Life 2, you’ll be blown away by this one: Someone actually made a real remote control City Scanner from the game. It’s spectacular.

Xbox One price drops by $50 ahead of E3

On the eve of E3, Microsoft has dropped the price of the Xbox One by $50, so the new starting price is $299. Polygon reports:

Microsoft just cut the price on all Xbox One consoles by $50, which drops the cost of a 500 GB unit to $299.

The deal applies to all Xbox One bundles, from the Gears of War: Ultimate Edition 500 GB bundle (now $299) all the way up to the Xbox One Elite Bundle (now $449).

And … sure enough. Prices start at $299 now at Amazon and elsewhere.

Windows 10 Mobile build 14342.1004 heads to Insiders in the Slow ring

Remember that Windows 10 Mobile insider build that they (re)released last week? Yeah, it’s on the Slow ring now too.

We are releasing Build 14342.1004 today for Windows Insiders in the Slow ring.

“Leaked” image purportedly shows Surface phone

I have no idea why anyone thinks this thing is real. It doesn’t look like a Surface device at all, in fact it looks like an Apple device. And that keyboard? Come on, people.


BBC’s Micro Bit computer is now available to the public

The BBC Micro Bit computer is now broadly available. The BBC reports:

The BBC Micro Bit, the tiny computing device designed to get children coding, is going on sale to the general public.

The device is already being delivered, free, to one million Year 7 children in schools across the UK.

Now it will also be available to buy from the various partners in the project for £12.99.

Commercial availability of the Micro Bit follows the signing of a licensing deal with the device’s manufacturer, the Leeds-based company, element 14.

The firm says it will only sell them in batches of 90.

But retailers including Microsoft, the Technology Will Save Us organisation and Sciencescope will offer individual devices.

And you thought the Raspberry Pi was cheap.

T-Mobile now has a “tourist” plan for international visitors to the U.S.

I often look for pay-as-you go SIMs when I travel internationally, and now it looks like T-Mobile is offering such a thing for international visitors to the United States. It’s called the T-Mobile Tourist Plan.

Experience the U.S. with hassle-free, affordable wireless service

No more hunting for Wi-Fi, paying for roaming fees, or requiring a full month of service.

For only $30 USD, the T-Mobile Tourist Plan connects you like a local for 3 weeks and includes:

Unlimited data, with up to 2GB at 4G LTE speed

Unlimited domestic and international texting to 140+ countries & destinations

1,000 minutes of domestic talk within the U.S.

Free SIM card for your unlocked phone

Very similar to what I do in Europe. Nice.

Only 1 in 5 smart phone users uses an ad-blocker on their phone

Sounds like a how-to article is in order. Anyway, CNET reports:

More than one in five people routinely block adverts on their phones, new figures say.

At least 419 million people are stopping ads from appearing on their mobile devices, according to a report by PageFair on the use of mobile ad-blockers. That works out to 22 percent of the world’s 1.9bn smartphone users, as of March 2016.

PageFair markets tools to combat ad-blockers.

This is a tough one for me. Obviously, I rely on web ads to make a living. But as obviously, ads suck.


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