Talking tech since 2003

Happy Sunday, folks, and welcome to the latest edition of the Weekend Wrap-Up. We’re summarizing the top stories in tech from the past week in two formats: video (directly below) and text (a bit further down), so that you can ingest all the news goodness the way you prefer.

I’m sure you came to catch up, not to read my babbling. So let’s jump in.

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Microsoft to Sell an Xbox One Without Kinect for $399

Is Microsoft already flopping on its Kinect vision? Not entirely, but the claims about Kinect being “integral” to the Xbox One experience may have been slightly exaggerated. This past week, Microsoft announced that it would be offering a version of the Xbox One without the controversial camera accessory, which would allow the system to be sold at the same price as the PlayStation 4 — $399. Some may point to this as the death of Kinect, but bear in mind, the Xbox 360’s version of the Kinect actually did well as a separate accessory, and the Xbox One Kinect already has some momentum thanks to its bundling with the first five million or so consoles. It’ll be a wait and see game, but I don’t think it’s time for a Kinect funeral just yet.

Apple to Acquire Beats Electronics

beats-musicWhen it comes to Beats, Apple apparently likes what it sees. The Cupertino-based company reportedly plans to acquire Beats Electronics, a maker of headphones and other music accessories founded by hip-hop legend Dr. Dre and entertainment industry genius Jimmy Iovine. And our own Jeff Weisbein believes that Apple’s potential acquisition has quite a bit to do with getting Iovine on Team Apple as anything else. Iovine is an extremely connected man in Hollywood, and the strings he’d be able to pull could help Apple’s entertainment ambitions in a number of different ways. If you have some time, read Jeff’s take on the matter. It’s quite good.

iPhone 6 Will Sport Higher-Resolution Display

We’ve heard countless rumors about how the iPhone 6 will feature a larger display (and could be the first iPhone “phablet” model), but the question of display resolution has never really been answered. Would Apple use the same resolution as the 5 and 5s to ensure app compatibility, while at the same time sacrificing its precious pixels per inch (PPI) count? A recent report says that won’t be the case, and that Apple plans to pack a higher-resolution 1704 x 960 display into the iPhone 6. For those who love that “Retina” level detail on their iPhone, this will certainly be welcome news.

The Flappy Bird Nightmare Lives On

A few months back, you couldn’t visit a news site on the Web without running into some mention of Flappy Bird. The game, which went viral thanks to its extremely frustrating gameplay, was pulled by developer Dong Nguyen after he concluded that the game was “too addictive.” And then life went back to normal for a while. Now, Nguyen is threatening to take over the Internet and our app stores once more with a newer version of Flappy Bird. This latest game will be “less addictive,” according to Nguyen, and is expected to drop sometime in August. God help us.


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