UK inquiry calls for video game loot boxes to be banned
State wide NSW digital drivers licence roll-out delayed
HTC has a new VR headset & Nintendo has a new fitness game for the Switch
Random interesting stuff I found on the internet
Cheap Beats Powerbeats Pro, Circles.Life phone plans, 75" Samsung TV, Xiaomi 10,000mAh powerbank
The UK has completed an inquiry into video game loot boxes and has made the recommendation that they be banned until it can be proven they're not going to turn kids into degenerate gamblers. If you're not familiar with loot boxes, in titles like CS:GO and FIFA19, you use real money to buy credits, then use those credits to obtain in-game items that are randomly assigned to you. It's crazily similar to poker machines and it's crazy addictive because if you want the best in-game items, the only way to get them is to drop loads of cash on these random boxes until you get what you want - you can't directly purchase the items. Good to see the UK recommend caution here. I wonder if they'll enforce it and take FIFA off the shelves for not complying?
NSW's digital drivers licence program was set to go state-wide in August, but was delayed for unknown reasons days before launch. In budget estimates yesterday, Customer Service Minister Victor Dominello explained that "I was not confident that they were ready to go at that point". Why was he not confident? "just stability in relation to the system". But upon further clarification, the boss of Service NSW said that an "additional set of assurances, checks and balances and independent inspection" is why the digital drivers licence will launch some time in "late 2019". All you people desperate to ditch the wallet and go smartphone only will have to wait a few more months.
Some news from video game land today - HTC has a new VR headset & Nintendo has a new fitness game for the Switch. HTC's headset is the "Vive Cosmos" and is HTC's flagship VR headset, with slightly higher resolution (2880x1700) OLED panels that run at 90Hz. It also uses a six-camera array on the headset for "inside-out" tracking that doesnt' require you to place cameras around the room. It'll go on sale for US$699 on October 3rd. Nintendo announced a weird looking Switch accessory called the "ring" controller that goes with their new fitness game, Ring Fit Adventure. You strap a Joycon to your leg, chuck another in this ring and squeeze, bounce, spin and move around to play the game - burning calories whilst doing so.
This Hisense A5 smartphone runs Android 9 and is a smartphone in every way possible, but has a 5.8" e-ink screen instead of an LCD/OLED. I want one?
Ed Snowden has published his memoirs, laying out why he decided to spill the beans on the entire US spying machine. Another book for my pile of shame.
There's a new game mode in the latest Civ 6 update (free, not DLC) called "Red Death" that is like a battle royale version of Civ. I don't like it but will give it a shot anyways.
Raj over at Reckoner has reviewed the DJI Osmo Pocket gimbal camera. It's a fucken sweet piece of kit if you record video and want an upgrade over your smartphone's video capabilities.
This Does Not Compute has torn down an IKEA Symfonisk speaker (the one that works with Sonos) and found it's pretty much a cheaper Play:1 in a different form factor.
Beats Powerbeats Pro wireless earphones - $297.46 from Wireless1's eBay store
New Optus MVNO "Circles.Life" is giving away 4 months of access with 20GB of data a month for free
75" Samsung UA75RU7100WXXY 4K TV - $1599.20 + delivery from Appliance Central on eBay
Xiaomi Mi PowerBank 2s 10,000mAh USB battery - $14.92 from Shopping Square's eBay store
🎶 Fell in Love With a Girl - The White Stripes
😁 The Sizzle is curated by Anthony "@decryption" Agius and emailed every weekday afternoon. Join us on Slack and chat with other Sizzle subscribers.
The Sizzle is created on Wathaurong land and acknowledges the traditional owners of country throughout Australia, recognising their continuing connection to land, water and community. I pay my respect to them and their cultures and to elders both past and present.