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Misinformed Rush To Judgment Prematurely Casts AMD Ryzen In Overly Critical Light

AMD’s lapse to a rival balance contra Intel in desktop PC processors is utterly expected a story of a decade in a computing sector. However, after rushed, day-one reviews of a chips detailed a few soothing spots in opening — privately reduce fortitude 1080p gaming — some have run divided with headlines and universal opinions that don’t take into care a realities of early release, cutting-edge semiconductor products, generally something as formidable as a code new CPU height architecture. If there’s one thing I’ve schooled in roughly dual decades of both offered and covering semiconductor height technologies as a sales operative and press media, it’s that optimization of hardware, firmware and program can make a universe of disproportion after a new product has a few months of infancy underneath a belt. It’s easy to see because many were dumbfounded about Ryzen’s uncharacteristic early shortcomings in gaming. After all, a massive and flourishing PC gaming industry and a ardent fan following will be the bread and butter marketplace for AMD’s prohibited new 8-core Ryzen processors. However, too few have taken a common low exhale to perspective this information indicate for what it is, now during least, a “corner case.”

AMD Ryzen Processor In Motherboard Socket

As we spoke with many of my colleagues, both analysts and press media, it was transparent that zodiacally everybody was saying a same reduce opening metrics for AMD Ryzen chips. When diversion benchmarks were dialed behind to 1920X1080 resolutions (1080p), Ryzen was uncharacteristically slower than a Intel counterparts, infrequently by as many as 30 – 40 percent. This accountability flies in a face of probably each other benchmark condition and outcome we’ve seen so distant with a chips, from heavy-duty workstation array crunching, rendering and calm creation, to customary bland capability discriminate tasks that need simple, quick short-burst IO response times. Here, Ryzen goes toe-to-toe with Intel Core and even beats it in spots. And when we dial resolutions behind up, Ryzen processors simply keep gait with Intel’s core-for-core in gaming. However, in that case, a exam condition is radically a graphics benchmark, given a infancy of a estimate is being finished on a GPU rather than a CPU.

My early thoughts were that removing on and off chip with Ryzen was exhibiting some arrange of unique round-trip latency or bug, given when tasked with pristine discriminate workloads Ryzen is so clever contra significantly some-more costly Intel chips. Others suspicion Ryzen was carrying issues with a energy states, dropping into a reduce energy mode inadvertently underneath this exam condition, demonstrative maybe of a BIOS firmware issue. Regardless, a some-more we kicked this around in a community, along with some of far-reaching swings in opening seen between motherboard vendors and version, a some-more this began to feel, in my opinion, like standard early silicon design flourishing pains.

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AMD Ryzen CPU Retail Boxes

In fact, AMD CEO Dr. Lisa Su underscored in a reddit AMA (Ask Me Anything) that gamers “should design gaming opening to usually get improved with time as a developers have some-more time with ‘Zen.” Dr. Su went on to note that she expects 1080p opening with Ryzen will see quantifiable gains down a highway and in destiny iterations of Zen2 and Zen3. In addition, AMD Corporate VP of Marketing John Taylor remarkable that AMD is on lane to broach thousands of developer kits to diversion devs for Ryzen optimization in 2017, that will assistance coax Ryzen-optimized diversion titles.

The bottom line is, it’s too early to tell what’s causing Ryzen to tumble brief in 1080p diversion contrast and both ecosystem house partners, diversion developers and AMD itself are all still ironing out a kinks with a Ryzen platform. We have to remember that Intel’s Core array design has hold such a widespread position for so long, that a immeasurable infancy of game engines grown in a final decade have expected been optimized on Intel design as a baseline initial and foremost. It will take some time for diversion patches, BIOS and CPU microcode updates to hurl out that could really good serve optimize Ryzen opening opposite a array of metrics, including 1080p gaming.

It’s wholly probable as well, of course, that there is some arrange of errata in a stream chips, in terms of memory and/or IO latency, such that certain focus use cases will sojourn a soothing mark for Ryzen performance. However, given many of a tech media and developer village has usually had Ryzen in their hands for about a week, it seems way too early to contend definitively that what we’re saying of AMD Ryzen opening right now is deputy of a full capabilities.

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Orisa Is The Best New ‘Overwatch’ Character So Far



There’s an expression: I hatred to contend we told we so. Well we don’t hatred it during all. we suffer it utterly a bit, actually.

And when it comes to Overwatch’s newest character, I told we so. Granted, so did a lot of other people, yet so what? My speculation was terrific. The best theory. Everybody thinks so.

There wasn’t a snowball’s possibility in Numbani that a newest further to a diversion would be a small girl.

I’m even some-more gratified that it wasn’t a third tellurian woman. Instead, we got Orisa, an Omnic centaur-like quadruped that Blizzard describes as an anchor-tank, or someone a rest of a group can convene ’round.

Orisa is a unequivocally cold character. Not usually is she a robot, she’s also arrange of animal-like, or bug-like, mixing my wish list for possibly a drudge (like Bastion) or an animal (like Winston) into one. She’s also fundamentally a multiple of Bastion and Reinhardt, with maybe a hold of a few other characters. In other words, she’s totally new and she’s a blast to play.

I’ve played her in a Public Test Region and find her approach some-more fun to play than a other dual newbies, Sombra and Ana. That competence only be personal bias, yet it’s how we feel.

Orisa has a laser appurtenance gun for her primary weapon, tosses an universe that sucks opponents toward it as her secondary, and can momentarily make herself unequivocally tough with a change button. She can also toss shields out in front of her, and her Ultimate grants a rest of a group an conflict buff. It’s a unequivocally useful, discerning ability set, yet we found myself tossing those shields approach too distant out in front of me.

Uber uses a program apparatus to brand and avoid formula coercion officials

Uber is regulating a apparatus called “Greyball” to work brand requests done by certain users and repudiate them service, according to Mike Isaac stating for a New York Times. The software, after renamed the “violation of terms of service” or VTOS program, is said to occupy information investigate on info collected by a Uber app to brand people violating Uber’s terms of service, and blocks riders from being means to accost rides who tumble into that difficulty – including, according to a report, members of formula coercion authorities or city officials who are attempting to accumulate information about Uber charity use where it’s now prohibited.

The news claims that that Uber’s “violation of terms of service” or VTOS program, quickly famous as Greyball, began around 2014, and has sign-off from Uber’s authorised team. The association supposing TechCrunch and a NYT a statement, that reads as follows:

This module denies float requests to users who are violating a terms of use — either that’s people aiming to physically mistreat drivers, competitors looking to interrupt a operations, or opponents who cooperate with officials on tip ‘stings’ meant to entice drivers.

Uber maintains that this module is dictated mostly for a insurance of a drivers, from formula enforcers operative in unison with cab interests. Uber drivers have been victims of earthy harm as a outcome of some of these forms of supposed “sting operations.” But Greyball’s use also came to light due to information granted to NYT by 4 opposite Uber sources, including dual stream employees, who were worried with a resources of a use according to a newspaper.

Some of a techniques reportedly used by Uber embody building a practical fringe around government offices and comforts in cities that a association monitored for app usage. It also had employees control searches for amicable media profiles to confirm certain users were indeed members of inner law coercion teams, a news claims, in sequence to supplement them to a Greyball list. Uber also infrequently called drivers to finish rides betimes if they’d picked adult someone on a Greyball list accidentally, per a Times.

The news says that as many as 50 to 60 Uber employees knew about Greyball’s existence in total, including a ubiquitous warn Salle Too and VP of Global Operations Ryan Graves. VTOS continues to work even now, yet a concentration stays on identifying bad actors from competitors, private attention antithesis and others, according to a company.

During Uber’s launch in Portland, law coercion were educated to try to accost Ubers and bust a drivers, given a use was in defilement of a city’s inner travel regulations. Oregon Live reported during a time that officials with a City Commissioner’s bureau couldn’t seem to book a ride, heading them to posit that they’d already been blocked by a ride-haling provider.

The module recalls issues lifted around Uber in a past, including statements done by SVP of Business Emil Michael during a cooking in 2014, that Uber CEO Travis Kalanick after apologized for, observant that Michael’s idea Uber could radically do antithesis investigate on reporters were “terrible and do not paint a company.” A news from Reveal News per a lawsuit in Dec that likewise done claims about a risks of Uber’s information government practices in terms of inner bearing to association employees, and mentioned Greyball by name.

Additional stating by Taylor Hatmaker.

Featured Image: Sabine Scheckel/DigitalVision/Getty Images

Tips For Playing The Legend of Zelda: Breath of a Wild

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of a Wild is a big, shining diversion full of secrets to uncover. It’s a blast to try on your own. But we competence need a small nudging.


Because this is a diversion about discovery, and we don’t wish to risk ruining that feeling for anyone, we’re dividing this tips essay into dual sections. First, some ubiquitous tips that don’t spoil unequivocally most and will be useful for everyone. Then, some-more specific stuff.


Turn off a HUD 

The mini-map and heat sign are both inessential, as Kirk points out, and it’s easier to conclude Breath of a Wild’s beauty when there’s reduction things on your screen.

Climbing though jumping lets we go farther 

It takes some-more stamina to burst upwards than it does to mount normally, so if we wish to scale vast walls, don’t jump.

Take advantage of production as we climb

Find small ridges on a plateau where we can stop climbing and customarily mount still for a few seconds, recharging your stamina so we can mount even offer adult plateau though descending and dying.

When we get to a new area, demeanour for high ground

A good order of ride in Breath of a Wild is to try from a tip down. It’s easier to get your bearings—and find cold stuff—when you’re starting from a high point.

Go for towers first

Towers, as you’ll find out shortly after starting a game, are vast structures that offer both as waypoints and as sources of information for your multi-tool Sheikah Slate. Until we find any region’s tower, your map will be totally blank. Climb to a tip of that tower, however, and you’ll fill out that segment of your map. Plus, you’ll have a new quick transport indicate and a good place to range out where we wish to go next.

…Then go for shrines

Each tabernacle is a quick transport point, so if we wish to start exploring in one instruction and afterwards backtrack so we can check out what’s in a other direction, you’ll wish as many of those as possible. Plus, they’re awesome.

Use your map to find new places to explore

Once you’ve found a tower, wizz around your map and demeanour for landmarks that seem interesting. They always are!

Save often 

The auto-save complement is forgiving, though not THAT forgiving. Run into a wrong warn trainer and we competence remove a few mins of progress.

Don’t be fearful to run like a coward

As you’re exploring Breath of a Wild, you’ll fundamentally confront large bosses and other dangerous surprises. This is, as we wrote in my review, a formidable game. Link competence have a Triforce of Courage, though we don’t, and you’re a one who has to understanding with a Game Over screen, so if we find yourself in a wily situation, customarily nope on out of there.

Talk to everybody in any town

Townspeople have copiousness of fun, useful things to say. The ones with red exclamation points circuitously their names will give we sidequests, and many of a others will give we clues about what’s function in any region. Some are customarily hilarious

Don’t worry about your weapons breaking

Yes, it’s uncanny to have to worry about arms continuance in a Zelda game. Truth is, we don’t unequivocally have to worry. Breath of a Wild gives we some-more weapons than we know what to do with, so don’t be fearful to use your best ones. If your cold new sword breaks, you’ll find a deputy flattering quickly, even if we have to take it from a Bokoblin’s passed hands.

Annotate your map (and keep a notebook)

As you’re exploring, you’ll substantially find places that we wish to revisit for one reason or another. The in-game map lets we put down markers, though there’s no approach to jot records alongside these markers, so it’s easy to forget that things we wish to come behind to, and why. Keep a cover (or laptop) as we play so we can write this things down.

You can quick transport any time

Even in combat!

Change your garments all a time

You can switch armor whenever you’d like. There are no penalties for doing this, no matter what conditions you’re in.

Always keep a lot of arrows on hand

They’re inexpensive and essential. Also, if we glow an arrow and skip your target, we can customarily find that arrow fibbing on a belligerent nearby.

Change a burst button

You can’t remap buttons—get prepared for lots of random crouching when you’re perplexing to run—but we can during slightest switch a burst symbol from X to B, that is approach improved placement.



And now…


Hang onto a hammer, a bladed weapon, a torch, and a Korok leaf

Each of these 4 weapons has a specific, useful purpose. The produce will make it easier to mangle rocks; a blade will let we clout down trees; a flame is, well, a torch; and a Korok root will let we emanate wind.

Cook food that gives we additional hearts

For unequivocally tough bosses, squeeze some radishes and prepare them with tender beef for dishes that supplement additional hearts to your meter. Enhanced survivability!

Throw 5 inexpensive mixture into a pot for $$$

A handful of apples or mushrooms turns into a useful plate that can sell for good income and assistance we buy apparatus (and other food ingredients) for your journeys by Hyrule. To maximize a volume of income we get, make certain you’re putting in 5 any time.

Sell gemstones

You competence wish to hang onto a singular diamonds, though there are copiousness of rubies, topazes, and amber rocks via a world. Don’t be fearful to sell a few so we can buy good gear.

Always mangle glossy rocks 

That’s where all those singular minerals come from.

Spicy food lets we exist a cold

Find yourself freezing? Get some sharp peppers and chuck them in a pot.

Talk to everybody in a vital city after violence a boss

Without removing too specific: There are 4 vital towns, and after violence a categorical query of any one, you’ll wish to go behind and speak to everybody for additional rewards and sidequests.

Find a Korok seed man

He’s on a highway to Kakariko Village. Help him out and afterwards we can start looking for Korok seeds, that will let we ascent your register slots.

Upgrade arms slots first

Bow and defense slots aren’t scarcely as useful.

Look for surprising objects in a environment 

Bricks, balls and chains, that arrange of thing. Also, mount to a tip of any mountain. Pick adult any bizarre stone you’ll see. Korok seed mini-puzzles are everywhere.

There are always mixed ways to do things

As a directors of Breath of a Wild report it, this diversion is a chemistry set: partial of a fun is saying how we can manipulate a production to solve puzzles and grasp your goals. Metal attracts electricity, breeze propels objects, and everything catches on fire.

Use a Magnet ability to find dark chests underwater

You’ll be astounded by how many cold things are dark in a inlet of Hyrule’s lakes and rivers.

When in doubt, try Stasis

Freeze an object, afterwards strike it a garland of times to send it drifting in a certain direction, that can have some astonishing effects.

Hang onto beast parts

You’ll need a lot of them to ascent your armor.

Hang onto ancient parts

You’ll need them to ascent your runes.

Use bombs on weaker enemies like Chu-Chus and Bokoblins

They’re absolute and infinite, so they don’t rubbish your ammo or arms durability. Plus, we can use them in all sorts of uncanny experiments.

Get several horses

Not customarily can we locate faster, stronger horses via a diversion (the improved ones tend to be toward a edges of a map), it’s fun to have a hulk collection of horses.

Don’t nap on set bonuses

Put together sets like a Goron armor (helmet, chest, and pants) and you’ll get some damn good buffs.

Follow a roads 

It’s tantalizing to mount plateau and skip over everything, though if we don’t follow a highway to Kakariko Village, for example, you’ll skip out on some essential apparatus and landmarks.

Aim a crawl while you’re in a atmosphere to enter slow-mo mode

It’ll empty stamina though give we some-more time to aim. And it feels badass.

You can use a paraglider any time you’re walking down a straight slope

Just burst in a atmosphere and strike a button. There’s no genuine unsentimental reason to do this, though it’s fun as hell.

You can compensate a small additional during inns for proxy reward hearts

Just in box we don’t wish to rubbish your radishes.

Upgrade your Sheikah Sensor

Once we get a upgraded version, we can mix it with your print collection to keep lane of all sorts of things. For example, take a design of a value chest and afterwards we can set a Sensor to beep when you’re circuitously one. Since there are value chests everywhere, this can get a small out of hand, though it’s a fun small hack.

Get a discretionary value chests in any nonplus shrine

They customarily have good loot.

When in doubt, try something crazy.

It’ll roughly always work.

The Google Pixel 2 is entrance and it won’t be cheap

According to Google hardware arch Rick Osterloh, a Google Pixel’s inheritor is on a approach — though a company’s subsequent flagship phone might still cost we a flattering penny.


The Pixel shows what a reward Google phone looks like.


2016 noted a year that Google bucked a common trend by ditching a Nexus brand for a line of signature smartphones, opting to change a name to Pixel after a Chromebook Pixel laptops. This time, Google designed a Pixel and Pixel XL phones from scratch and combined reward facilities like a high-quality camera. Now that we’ve gotten word of a second-generation Pixel, it suggests a Pixel code might be here to stay.

When asked about a Pixel 2 this week, Osterloh told AndroidPIT: “There is an annual stroke in a industry. So, we can count on us to follow it.” He added: “You can count on a inheritor this year, even if we don’t hear a date from me now.” So we can design a subsequent Pixel to come in 2017, though it’s not nonetheless transparent either it’ll be expelled in Oct like final year.

We’ve listened rumors of a Pixel 2 in a past: according to a 9to5Google report from January, a second-generation Pixel might come with softened H2O resistance, an even improved camera, and a faster processor.

Google was also rumored to be contrast a bill version, a “Pixel 2B,” according to that same report. But when AndroidPIT asked Osterloh about a second Pixel’s price, a answer — “Pixel stays premium” — seemed to fire a thought of a bill phone down. If Google creates a inexpensive phone, maybe it won’t be called a Pixel, or maybe Google is withdrawal bill phones to other manufacturers. After all, there are plenty of inexpensive Android phones to select from.

Google didn’t immediately respond to a ask for comment.

New sum on Google’s Pixel 2

Also, there’s no Samsung S8, though we’ll see a Galaxy Tab S3 during Mobile World Congress 2017.

by Brian Tong

Garmin announces three variants of updated Fenix 5 GPS watch

The next generation of Fenix wearables was unveiled at CES on Wednesday, when Garmin took the wraps off three new versions of the company’s popular line of GPS-enabled watches. The updated Fenix 5 is thinner, lighter, and more versatile than its predecessor, though it offers the same cutting-edge functionality that has made previous versions of watch so popular with outdoor athletes. The latest edition of the Fenix brings a host of new functionality as well, including daily activity tracking, heart rate monitoring, and extended battery life to keep up with an active lifestyles.

The standard Fenix 5 received a design overhaul, and now features a thinner, more compact body. The device is a mere 47mm thin, yet offers the same functionality found in previous generations, including the popular Fenix 3HR. And thanks to the new QuickFit bands, users can give the watch an entirely new look in just a matter of seconds. QuickFit bands will be available in leather, metal, and silicone, and can be replaced without the use of tools of any kind.

More: Polar Team pro shirt allows coaches to track their entire team’s performance

The new Fenix 5S is another redesign of the classic Fenix watch, but this time it has been built specifically with the ladies in mind. At just 42mm, the 5S  has been made to fit comfortably on more petite wrists without compromising any of the device’s multisport features. The standard model comes in silver with either a white, turquoise, or black silicone band. The 5S Sapphire model includes a scratch-resistant sapphire glass lens, and is available in black with a black band, champagne with a water-resistant gray suede band, or champagne with a metal band. All Sapphire models also come with a sporty, silicone QuickFit band.

The third new addition to the Fenix family is the 5X, which is a bit larger than the standard Fenix 5 at 51 millimeters, but adds some extra functionality to make up for the larger size. The 5X comes preloaded with topographic maps for the United States, and has routable cycling and running maps, too. It even features options for a “Round Trip Run” or “Round Trip Ride,” with the watch suggesting a host of appropriate courses. Once the wearer starts his or her workout, the watch will provide cues for approaching turns, ensuring that athletes always stay on course. The 5X also includes an “Around Me” feature that provides information about points of interest and waypoints that are nearby. A Sapphire version of the 5X is also available with a scratch-resistant lens.

Each of the Fenix 5 models comes equipped with a multisport toolset for running, cycling, swimming, hiking, and other outdoor activities. They also feature Garmin Elevate, the company’s proprietary heart rate monitoring technology, which works without the need to wear a bulky chest strap. All three versions of the Fenix 5 include daily activity tracking and they offer support for both GPS and GLONASS satellite navigation, too. As if that wasn’t enough, there is also an onboard 3-axis compass, gyroscope, and barometric altimeter for even more precise tracking of movement, including vertical gain and loss.

The Fenix 5, 5S, and 5X can serve as a smartwatch, too. When paired with a smartphone, users can receive notifications of text messages, emails, and missed calls right on their wrist, with alerts being displayed on the watch’s screen. These latest editions of the Fenix are also compatible with Garmin’s ConnectIQ, which gives the wearer the ability to customize their watch with apps, widgets, and custom faces as well. All Sapphire models of the Fenix 5 also have built-in Wi-Fi capabilities, which allows them to upload workout data to Garmin Connect independent of another device.

As you would expect with an active lifestyle watch, all versions of the Fenix 5 are water resistant down to 100 meters and are built to withstand life in the outdoors. Garmin says that the standard Fenix 5 gets about two weeks worth of battery life when in smartwatch mode, and roughly 24 hours when its GPS tracking features are turned on. For the 5X those numbers drop slightly to 12 days in smartwatch mode and 20 hours of GPS usage, while the smaller 5S can get up to eight days of battery life in smartwatch mode and 13 hours while using the GPS features.

All version of the Fenix 5 will be available in the first quarter of 2017, with the standard model and the 5S both carrying an MSRP of $600. The Fenix 5 Sapphire, 5S Sapphire, and the 5X will be priced at $700. For more information, visit

This is Samsung’s next premium TV line: The QLED Smart TV

Samsung has brand new TVs for you, though you’ll have to wait a while to get your hands on one. Unveiled at CES 2017, the new QLED TVs are supposed to offer an overall better experience as they will become the company’s new flagship TV series, ready to replace the SUHD family.

The QLED TVs are supposed to be even smarter and better connect to all your TV devices. The operating system should recognize what they are and let you control them with the default Samsung Smart Remote.

When it comes to picture quality, the QLED models should offer users a few noticeable improvements, including better viewing angles, better colors including better blacks, and brighter HDR (high dynamic range) performance.

The new TVs use what Samsung calls a “metal Quantum dot material that allows for dramatically enhanced color performance, as well as the expression of very deep blacks and rich details in all viewing environments.”


The new TV family comes in two flavors, including Q8 Curved and Q9 Flat, with Samsung showing off 65-inch versions at the show.

What’s interesting about the flat models is that you can hang them on a wall just like a painting. They sit flush with the wall thanks to a new mounting mechanism. Digital Trends also reveals there’s a new component to help, a nearly invisible cable management system that uses fiber-optic to move the video signal from a special box that would be hooked up with all your TV-related devices. Power still needs to be provided to the display from a regular power outlet.

Pricing details and launch dates aren’t yet available for Samsung’s QLED screens.

CES 2017: Your guide to the Consumer Electronics Show





BEST GADGETS AND GIZMOS FROM CES 2017CES 2017 innovation award winners | 0:54

Jefferson Graham previews the best of the best–winners of the coveted CES Innovation Awards, on the dawn of the annual CES in Las Vegas. A #TalkingTech video





BEST GADGETS AND GIZMOS FROM CES 2017CES 2017- Meet Kuri a new kind of personal robot | 1:23

New at CES 2017 – a new kind of personal robot, Kuri, from Mayfield Robotics. Jefferson Graham previews on #TalkingTech.





BEST GADGETS AND GIZMOS FROM CES 20175 tech experts on what they’re most excited to see at this year’s CES | 1:17 has been covering CES for over a decade, and these are what our tech experts are most excited to see at this year’s show.





BEST GADGETS AND GIZMOS FROM CES 2017WeMo introduces smaller home automation socket | 0:41

WeMo, a smart switch for controlling home products via an app, introduces a smaller, stackable version for Consumer Electronics Show.





BEST GADGETS AND GIZMOS FROM CES 2017CES 2017 – a router Alexa can command | 0:53

Linksys introduces Velop, a new router system Alexa can command, at the Consumer Electronics Show





BEST GADGETS AND GIZMOS FROM CES 2017Unpacking Peak Design Everyday 30L backpack | 2:31

Jefferson Graham has stuffed pounds of tech gear into the Peak Design Everyday 30L backpack to bring to CES–will it be too heavy? He shows off just how much stuff is in the bag on a #TalkingTech video.





BEST GADGETS AND GIZMOS FROM CES 2017LG brings levitating speaker to market | 1:07

LG is planning to bring its PJ9 levitating speaker to CES 2017. Keri Lumm (@thekerilumm) reports on this impressive tech.





BEST GADGETS AND GIZMOS FROM CES 2017CES 2017 – Whatever happened to the hits of CES 2016? | 0:58

Jefferson Graham looks back at some of the hits from CES 2016–whatever happened to the Lily and Sengled music lightbulb? He reports on a #TalkingTech video.
Video by Robert Hanashiro





BEST GADGETS AND GIZMOS FROM CES 2017What to expect at CES 2017 | 1:14

Jefferson Graham previews what to look for at the world’s biggest trade show, with robots, drones, connected cars and virtual reality gear leading the pack. A #TalkingTech video.
Video by Robert Hanashiro

  • CES 2017 innovation award winners
  • CES 2017- Meet Kuri a new kind of personal robot
  • 5 tech experts on what they're most excited to see at this year's CES
  • WeMo introduces smaller home automation socket
  • CES 2017 - a router Alexa can command
  • Unpacking Peak Design Everyday 30L backpack
  • LG brings levitating speaker to market
  • CES 2017 - Whatever happened to the hits of CES 2016?
  • What to expect at CES 2017

If you like robots, or self-driving cars, or crazy stuff like smart belt buckles, then this is your week.

The Consumer Electronics Show kicks off this week in Las Vegas. When you’re not bumping into $25 blackjack tables, you’re probably trying to dodge drones in all shapes and sizes.

Most of the major electronics companies will show up, including Samsung, LG and Dell. Among those that don’t make a splashy appearance: Apple, Google and Facebook.

Want to keep track of everything from CES 2017? Start here, of course:

What’s the coolest tech at CES so far?

Travel giant Carnival unveiled a fun wearable allowing passengers aboard its cruise ships to leave their keys or wallets behind. You can board or disembark the ship, unlock your room and make any purchases using a medallion you can slip in your pocket or wear like a watch. Now you can enjoy those fruity drinks with tiny umbrellas peacefully.

Automakers have quickly found a space at CES, thanks to self-driving cars and smart dashboards. The one vehicle grabbing the most attention is the FF 91 from Faraday Future. The car maker is promising big things for the FF 91. A vehicle with the horsepower of a Ferrari and the driving range of a Tesla? Amazing. It’s fast, too. During a trial run, the car hit 0 to 60 miles per hour in 2.39 seconds. Does it fly too?

Own a ton of connected devices? You might want to consider this router. It’s among several products security companies are pushing to help protect devices like that smart refrigerator from hackers.

Even babies need their own smart speaker and digital assistant. Mattel introduced Aristotle, which is basically Amazon Echo for kids. And it’s really cool. If your infant wakes up, it can play soothing music and flip on lights while notifying Mom and Dad.

But we want more robots!

OK, fine. Here’s Kuri, a “home companion” launching this fall for $699. It does a lot of things Amazon Echo can do, but who cares because it can take cat videos while you’re away and play them when you get home.





New at CES 2017 – a new kind of personal robot, Kuri, from Mayfield Robotics. Jefferson Graham previews on #TalkingTech.

What else did I miss?

Finally, 4K TV is kind of a big deal. Since the first televisions boasting the higher definition displays went on sale in 2012, consumers have slowly warmed up to the technology. As many as 1 in 4 U.S. households could own a 4K TV by the end of 2017. A big reason for the boost? There’s a lot more 4K programming to watch.

Be ready to hear the name Alexa a lot. A lot of the gadgets at CES will likely incorporate some form of voice-enabled digital assistant. One example: Velop, the Wi-Fi system from router maker Linksys. It can respond to voice commands like share your home password with guests or go on a Wi-Fi timeout. Take notes on that last feature, parents.





Linksys introduces Velop, a new router system Alexa can command, at the Consumer Electronics Show

Meanwhile, if you’re into video games, PC makers are pushing to offer more affordable hardware options. Dell revealed its Inspiron gaming laptop, going on sale January 5.

Speaking of Dell, one of their best laptops has now transformed into a tablet. Because everything is a tablet or smartphone now.

What announcements should I expect?

On Tuesday, the show hosts CES Unveiled, a media event where journalists get an early look at some of the gadgets on the show floor.

Wednesday is the big day at CES. Most of the tech companies hold press conferences to reveal their latest products, including LG, Samsung, Panasonic, Intel, Nvidia and Sony.

On Thursday, the CES show floor officially opens.

So, what should we expect? There will definitely be a fair share of robots, drones and smart devices on display. Don’t forget self-driving cars, either. One trend to watch closely: the rise of the digital personal assistant.

How do I stay updated on the latest from Vegas?

Follow our tech reporters on Twitter from Las Vegas: Ed Baig, Jefferson Graham and Mike Snider. You might also see them on Facebook Live. For the latest streams from CES, visit us on Facebook.

Also, check out the latest news and reviews at CES from

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The 7 most exciting innovations I saw on Faraday Future’s FF 91

To say Faraday Future has gotten off to a rocky start over the past couple of years may be the understatement of the year, and it’s only January. The company debuted its FFZERO1 concept supercar amid a whirlwind of buzz at CES 2016, but the press quickly dismissed the car as vapor. A year full of turmoil with Faraday’s main financier, lawsuits filed by vendors alleging millions in unpaid bills, and numerous top-level executive departures cast further doubt on the company’s future. But on Tuesday night, Faraday Future unveiled its first actual production car, which it says will enter production sometime next year.

Ahead of CES 2017, I spent a full day touring Faraday’s Gardena, California headquarters. I saw where the car is being designed and developed, I checked out prototypes of the futuristic electric car, and I even had my head pinned back when I went for a ride in an early prototype. I already shared my overall impressions and some initial thoughts about the FF 91 last night, and now I’ll focus on a few key areas where Faraday Future is truly innovating.

Variable Platform Architecture

Innovation begins to appear at the very core of the FF 91, where Faraday Future’s Variable Platform Architecture (VPA) redefines the way a car is built. Consisting of a modular wheelbase, modular battery infrastructure, and modular motor configurations, VPA technology essentially provides bones and guts that can be manipulated quickly to as new vehicles are designed. Tech like this will drastically reduce time to market for new vehicles.

Here’s a video that shows a bit more about how VPA works:

Truly keyless

Keyless entry and keyless go technology started on premium cars, and the tech has now trickled down to all automobile ranges. At best, this means carrying a key in your pocket or purse, but never having to actually use it thanks to special contact points on the door handles that lock and unlock the doors, and to push-button ignitions. But what if you didn’t need any key at all?

Exterior and interior cameras on the FF 91 recognize drivers and passengers as they approach the vehicle, and Bluetooth connects to iPhones and Android phones. Motorized suicide doors then open and close with the touch of a button, and the electric motors fire up with the push of another button.

But the best part about Faraday’s system is that it’s tied to a profile. This means that whether you’re stepping into the cockpit of your own FF 91 or you’re sliding into the back of someone else’s FF 91, all of your settings and preferences will automatically be adjusted by the vehicle.


Faraday Future does not yet have a finished FF 91. While the company’s claim that the vehicle will accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in 2.39 seconds, there is currently no way to confirm that with a production-weight car. But having seen the company’s work in its current state, and having ridden in a prototype and had my head pinned back by its acceleration, I can safely say that Faraday is well on its way to producing one of the most powerful and agile production cars I have ever seen.

Three electric motors combine to produce 1,050 hp, and the heavy battery packs give the FF 91 a very low center of gravity. Even the early model I rode in hugged the road impressively as the driver jerked the wheel from side to side. The rear wheels also have a few degrees of left and right movement, dramatically reducing the FF 91’s turning radius despite its long 126-inch wheelbase.

Aerodynamics also play a huge role in performance and efficiency, of course. Angus Lock, Faraday’s head of aero, joined the company from Tesla, where he worked on the aerodynamics of the Roadster and the Model S.



Exterior vehicle lighting has changed a great deal over the past two decades thanks to a trend started by BMW’s “angel eyes.” Now, just about every car on the road has some crazy-looking DRL setup. The FF 91 takes exterior lighting to an entirely new place, with “FF” pattern LED lighting on all sides of the car.

What’s most interesting about Faraday’s solution though, is that it actually serves a purpose beyond looking cool. Just as brake lights communicate a message to drivers behind a car, the FF 91’s lighting glows and pulses to communicate messages to people around the vehicle. For example, the lights on the front and along the sides of the car will pulse white when the vehicle is driving itself in autonomous mode.

Valet mode

Speaking of autonomous mode, the FF 91 will be fully equipped to embrace the future of self-driving vehicles when we finally arrive at a point where regulation is in place and systems are smart enough to drive without human assistance. In the meantime, Faraday Future’s cars will already have some very nifty self-driving modes that owners will undoubtedly appreciate. Among them, valet mode is by far my favorite.

With valet mode enabled, and in a lot that Faraday’s system has mapped, an FF 91 driver can step out of his car at the front door of a building. The car will then slowly make its way around the parking lot on its own, scanning for open spots and reading signage as well as painted markers in order to avoid parking in restricted spaces. When it finds an open spot, it will park itself and power down.

Of course, when the visit is through the driver can recall the FF 91 using his or her smartphone, and it will be waiting at the front door as he or she exits the building.


Faraday Future has been cautious in showing off the FF 91’s interior since it’s not yet finalized, but what I’ve seen so far is impressive. Dozens of screens of all shapes and sizes replace traditional instrument panels and controls. We’re not talking about a single great big touchscreen on the console like you’ve seen in Teslas — there are literally screens everywhere. Screens in the front, screens in the back, screens in the door panels, screens in the pillars. There’s even a giant screen that folds down from the roof to entertain rear passengers.

Beyond the screens, interior cameras offer security and facial recognition to automatically adjust settings. Which settings? Quad-zone climate control, heating and cooling seats, seat massage settings, recline angle of the rear zero gravity seats, just to name a few.

Faraday has more announcements planned in the coming months, and the interior of the car is one area where you should definitely keep an eye peeled.


Innovation continues on the exterior of the car, where sleek aerodynamics are only the beginning.

The FF 91 is the first car ever to feature a fully retractable 3D lidar solution found on the hood near the windshield. The car also features 10 high-definition cameras, 13 long- and short-range radar sensors, and 12 ultrasonic sensors. All of this tech combines to form one of the most sophisticated and self-aware vehicles that has ever been built.

Other exterior innovations include the lighting, of course, as well as dual roof-mounted antennas that also broadcast Wi-Fi to connect passengers’ mobile devices, Polymer Dispersed Liquid Crystal self-dimming glass in the rear windows and panoramic roof, and active wheels that feature a motorized inner disc that rotates to close off open spaces and further improve aerodynamics at high speeds.

Qualcomm Says It Shipped More Than A Billion IoT Chips

To this date, Qualcomm has shipped over a billion of Internet of Things (IoT) chipsets, the San Diego-based semiconductor manufacturer revealed on Tuesday. While speaking at the CES Unveiled press event yesterday, the company’s Senior Vice President of Product Management Raj Talluri said that the firm is already serving all segments of the IoT industry, from smart TVs and thermostats to connected speakers, wearables, and home assistants. Talluri specifically pointed out that smartphones and tablets aren’t included in the one billion figure.

Qualcomm’s impressive shipment numbers are mostly driven by the company’s presence in the wearable industry, as Talluri revealed that over 80% of all Android smartwatches are powered by Snapdragon system-on-chips. The company’s VP pointed out how numerous consumer electronics manufacturers are already implementing the cutting edge Snapdragon 835 chipset into their products, adding how a lot of these devices will be hitting the market shortly. Among other things, Qualcomm’s most advanced mobile chip to date will power Mobi’s Mattel Aristotle smart speaker, as well as Osterhaut Design Group’s upcoming R-8 and R-9 AR smart glasses. Finally, Talluri also revealed that a new smartwatch designed by Swarovski and powered by one of Qualcomm’s Snapdragon chipsets will be revealed later this week at CES 2017. The mysterious Swarovski smartwatch will be the first device of its kind ever made by the renowned Austrian fashion company and is reported to be fueled by the premium Snapdragon 835 chip.

Qualcomm’s VP also sees a lot of potential for revenue growth in the auto industry as self-driving cars are slowly becoming a reality and connected cars systems are already implemented in a broad range of contemporary models. If future vehicles are to be perfectly capable of scanning their surroundings, they’ll need powerful chips, and the San Diego-based semiconductor manufacturer is hoping it can help provide them. Qualcomm is also planning to test a number of new car connectivity technologies over the course of this year, and Talluri promised that more information about that effort will follow shortly. In overall, this is bound to be an interesting year for Qualcomm as the company will be looking to strengthen its market presence while simultaneously pushing for more innovation in the industry.