Tech Talk: First Edition- Microsoft, Sony, and Apple Release New Products

BY ANDREW GOODMAN, DAWSON HUNT


Welcome to Tech Talk, a place where we will share technology related news, tips, and opinions. This article will be released every so often with the exception of school holidays. We hope you find this information useful and put it to use. Enjoy!

News

On Oct. 13, Apple held their annual iPhone event. Due to Covid-19, this event, along with two other Apple events, had to be presented in a pre-recorded format since large gatherings are not recommended. During this event, Apple unveiled five new products. First up was HomePod mini, a small yet powerful smart speaker that utilizes Siri, Apple’s virtual assistant. In a press release, Apple stated in a press release, “At just 3.3 inches tall, HomePod mini is packed with innovative technologies and advanced software that together enable computational audio to deliver breakthrough audio quality wherever it is placed.” Next up is iPhone, with four new models being introduced including iPhone 12 and 12 Mini, along with iPhone 12 Pro and 12 Pro Max. All of these new iPhones feature 5G connectivity. This will help usher in a new era of mobile connectivity. This is followed after Samsung brought 5G to their Galaxy lineup. These new iPhones also feature a ceramic shield. Apple stated that, “...combined with the Ceramic Shield front cover, which goes beyond glass by adding a new high temperature crystallization step that grows nano-ceramic crystals within the glass matrix, increases drop performance by 4x.” The whole lineup now features Apple’s Super Retina XDR displays which allows for high contrast and true blacks which altogether brings a better media and gaming experience. Cameras have taken a big jump with improved sensors and image stabilization along with Dolby Vision video recording. These models also bring back the iconic flat edge design. For more information, visit www.apple.com/iphone.

HomePod Mini

Apple held another event recently Nov. 10. At this event, Apple unveiled the new custom designed M1 silicon chip. According to Apple, “M1 delivers up to 3.5x faster CPU performance, up to 6x faster GPU performance, and up to 15x faster machine learning, all while enabling battery life up to 2x longer than previous-generation Macs. With its profound increase in performance and efficiency, M1 delivers the biggest leap ever for the Mac.” This will allow for thinner and quieter devices in the future. During this event, Apple showcased updates to the current models of MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, and Mac Mini. This comes after Apple announced a transition from Intel to custom silicon chips during their WWDC 2020 event. This is similar to Apple’s PowerPC to Intel transition that occurred in 2006. To learn more about the M1 chip and other Apple Products, visit www.apple.com/mac.


Microsoft’s Xbox Series S and X launched Nov. 10. These next generation Xbox consoles feature 4K Resolution Gaming, Up to 120 FPS (Frames Per Second), 8K HDR (High Dynamic Range), and Backwards Compatibility. This will be notably, “The Fastest, Most Powerful Xbox Ever.” However, with the new consoles being used with the same software there will be no problems with just keeping the Xbox One for players who are fine with the performance the earlier console already possesses. In other words, the games that will come out in the future will still be compatible with the old generation consoles.


Sony’s new PlayStation 5 launched Nov. 12. The Playstation 5 will have tons of new features that come along with the new title. Some of those features include Ray Tracing, 4K TV gaming, up to 120 FPS with 120 Hz Output, HDR support, and 8K capability. The PS5 will also be backwards compatible with PS4. There will also be a digital version of the PS5 with the same capabilities of the disc version.


Tips and Tricks


  • Did you know that you can quickly switch between apps in Windows? Simply hold down the “Alt” key and press “Tab” until the app you want is selected.

  • Having microphone issues? Check to make sure the “F4” key is not lit up. If it is, hold down “Fn” and press “F4”

  • Need to take a screenshot of something but do not want the whole screen? Use “Snip & Sketch”. Use this pre-installed program to capture only certain parts of the screen.

Opinions

Apple V.S. Fortnite Battle by Andrew Goodman

The Apple Versus Fortnite battle started over the summer. With Apple having strict policies over payment systems, Fortnite, which is developed by Epic Games, was not allowed to implement their own payment system per App Store Guidelines. These are the same guidelines that instigated Spotify to fight against Apple. Fortnite eventually released their own hidden payment system, which Apple found, prompting the app to be removed. This began a lawsuit against Apple by Epic Games stating that this app ban was illegal and unfair. Google also removed Fortnite from the Play Store after discovering this unapproved payment system therefore adding Google to the lawsuit. Judges have sided with Apple, Google, and Epic Games. Personally, I believe Epic Games is in the wrong. They intentionally violated policies that were clearly laid out. I believe Apple is entitled to controlling their own App Store and so is Google. I would compare this lawsuit to a person staying at a friend’s house but not following the rules. The homeowner would be allowed to kick the friend out so Apple should be allowed to remove apps from the App Store for not following the rules.








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