Just when I thought the NFT chaos had calmed, here comes Instagram. Speaking at SXSW, Mark Zuckerberg confirmed digital collectibles would be arriving on Instagram “in the near term.” Zuckerberg said NFTs could one day play a role in the company’s eventual metaverse. “I would hope that, the clothing that your avatar is wearing in the metaverse… can be basically minted as an NFT, and you can take it between your different places,” he said.SXSW 2022 is this week, and we’re remotely reporting on all the major panels, announcements and reveals. Just, sadly, without the Austin food scene on hand.— Mat SmithThe biggest stories you might have missedHow to recycle your used and unwanted gadgetsAMD’s Ryzen 7 5800X3D CPU will be available April 20th for $449Samsung’s Odyssey Neo G9 mini-LED gaming monitor returns to an all-time lowSamsung will bring Galaxy S22 features to older phones Lenovo’s latest ThinkPad update is bringing fresh CPUs and better connectivityIntel plans to build a $19 billion chip plant in Germany’Diamond Hands’ offers a good if narrow portrait of the GameStop stock squeezePolk’s latest soundbar packs Dolby Atmos in an ultra-compact designGoogle says Steam is coming to ‘select’ ChromebooksYou’ll need the right hardware to play.Google mentioned in its Games Developer Summit keynote that a Steam alpha test for Chrome OS will be available for “select” Chromebooks. Details weren’t available as of this writing, but Google pointed would-be players to a (currently unavailable) Chromebook community forum post. What about minimum specs? According to rumors, you might be limited to models with at least an 11th-gen Core i5 and 7GB of RAM. And hey, what about Stadia?Continue reading.Microsoft’s DirectStorage will speed up game loads on Windows 10 and 11The API is available to game developers right now.”Windows games can ship with DirectStorage,” starting today, Microsoft has announced. DirectStorage is the tech giant’s fast game-loading technology that was introduced with the Xbox Series X and S consoles. In September 2020, Microsoft revealed it’ll also make the DirectStorage API available on Windows, allowing games for PCs to take advantage of the technology. It may take a while for more titles to come with DirectStorage, especially since not everyone has upgraded to NVMe SSDs yet.Continue reading.Tesla raises prices across its entire EV lineupThe base Model 3 now costs $46,990.TeslaTesla has raised the prices of its electric vehicles for the second time in a month. After adding $1,000 to some long-range models last week, the automaker has now implemented a much larger price increase across its lineup. Prices now start at $46,990 for the base Model 3, $2,000 higher than before. Although Tesla has quietly raised prices overnight, the move didn’t come out of left field. On Twitter, company chief Elon Musk hinted at the possibility of a price hike. He said both Tesla and SpaceX are seeing “significant recent inflation pressure in raw materials [and] logistics.”Continue reading.Watch the first ‘Ms. Marvel’ trailerIt’ll premiere June 8th on Disney+.MarvelMs. Marvel, one of several Marvel Cinematic Universe shows coming to Disney+ this year, will premiere on June 8th. It centers around Kamala Khan (Iman Vellani), a Pakistani–American whose idol is Captain Marvel. She’ll be the MCU’s first Muslim superhero and will also appear in The Marvels movie, which is scheduled to hit theaters on February 17th, 2023.Continue reading.Amazon wins EU approval for its $8.45 billion purchase of MGMThe company’s still awaiting the go-ahead from US regulators.European Union officials have unconditionally OKed Amazon’s $8.45 billion bid to buy famed movie and TV studio MGM. The European Commission’s antitrust regulators determined there was limited overlap between the companies and said the merger wouldn’t severely reduce competition in the movie business.Amazon still needs the green light from the Federal Trade Commission before it can close the deal, which was announced last May. Recent reports suggested the FTC was planning to challenge the merger with an antitrust lawsuit. However, that requires a majority vote by commissioners.Continue reading.

Just when I thought the NFT chaos had calmed, here comes Instagram. Speaking at SXSW, Mark Zuckerberg confirmed digital collectibles would be arriving on Instagram “in the near term.” Zuckerberg said NFTs could one day play a role in the company’s eventual metaverse. “I would hope that, the clothing that your avatar is wearing in the metaverse… can be basically minted as an NFT, and you can take it between your different places,” he said.

SXSW 2022 is this week, and we’re remotely reporting on all the major panels, announcements and reveals. Just, sadly, without the Austin food scene on hand.

— Mat Smith

The biggest stories you might have missed

How to recycle your used and unwanted gadgets

AMD’s Ryzen 7 5800X3D CPU will be available April 20th for $449

Samsung’s Odyssey Neo G9 mini-LED gaming monitor returns to an all-time low

Samsung will bring Galaxy S22 features to older phones

Lenovo’s latest ThinkPad update is bringing fresh CPUs and better connectivity

Intel plans to build a $19 billion chip plant in Germany

‘Diamond Hands’ offers a good if narrow portrait of the GameStop stock squeeze

Polk’s latest soundbar packs Dolby Atmos in an ultra-compact design

Google says Steam is coming to ‘select’ Chromebooks

You’ll need the right hardware to play.

Google mentioned in its Games Developer Summit keynote that a Steam alpha test for Chrome OS will be available for “select” Chromebooks. Details weren’t available as of this writing, but Google pointed would-be players to a (currently unavailable) Chromebook community forum post. What about minimum specs? According to rumors, you might be limited to models with at least an 11th-gen Core i5 and 7GB of RAM. And hey, what about Stadia?

Continue reading.

Microsoft’s DirectStorage will speed up game loads on Windows 10 and 11

The API is available to game developers right now.

“Windows games can ship with DirectStorage,” starting today, Microsoft has announced. DirectStorage is the tech giant’s fast game-loading technology that was introduced with the Xbox Series X and S consoles. In September 2020, Microsoft revealed it’ll also make the DirectStorage API available on Windows, allowing games for PCs to take advantage of the technology. It may take a while for more titles to come with DirectStorage, especially since not everyone has upgraded to NVMe SSDs yet.

Continue reading.

Tesla raises prices across its entire EV lineup

The base Model 3 now costs $46,990.

Tesla

Tesla has raised the prices of its electric vehicles for the second time in a month. After adding $1,000 to some long-range models last week, the automaker has now implemented a much larger price increase across its lineup. Prices now start at $46,990 for the base Model 3, $2,000 higher than before. Although Tesla has quietly raised prices overnight, the move didn’t come out of left field. On Twitter, company chief Elon Musk hinted at the possibility of a price hike. He said both Tesla and SpaceX are seeing “significant recent inflation pressure in raw materials [and] logistics.”

Continue reading.

Watch the first ‘Ms. Marvel’ trailer

It’ll premiere June 8th on Disney+.

Marvel

Ms. Marvel, one of several Marvel Cinematic Universe shows coming to Disney+ this year, will premiere on June 8th. It centers around Kamala Khan (Iman Vellani), a Pakistani–American whose idol is Captain Marvel. She’ll be the MCU’s first Muslim superhero and will also appear in The Marvels movie, which is scheduled to hit theaters on February 17th, 2023.

Continue reading.

Amazon wins EU approval for its $8.45 billion purchase of MGM

The company’s still awaiting the go-ahead from US regulators.

European Union officials have unconditionally OKed Amazon’s $8.45 billion bid to buy famed movie and TV studio MGM. The European Commission’s antitrust regulators determined there was limited overlap between the companies and said the merger wouldn’t severely reduce competition in the movie business.

Amazon still needs the green light from the Federal Trade Commission before it can close the deal, which was announced last May. Recent reports suggested the FTC was planning to challenge the merger with an antitrust lawsuit. However, that requires a majority vote by commissioners.

Continue reading.

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