X Factor 2018 streaming: how to watch online for free from the UK or abroad

The UK’s ultimate singing showdown is back for another series. Yes, The X Factor returns to our screens this weekend and we’re here to make sure you’re streaming all the highs (and those delicious lows) no matter where you are in the world.

The UK’s ultimate singing showdown is back for another series. Yes, The X Factor returns to our screens this weekend and we’re here to make sure you’re streaming all the highs (and those delicious lows) no matter where you are in the world.

While the lovable Dermot O’Leary remains at the helm, this year’s judging panel has seen a considerable shake-up. Joining X Factor overlord Simon Cowell is One Direction’s Louis Tomlinson, Robbie Williams, his wife Ayda Field, and Sharon Osbourne for the live shows. With Louis Walsh absent for the first time in 13 years, it will be interesting to see what the intra-marriage, Robbie-Ayda dynamic brings to the 2018 X Factor panel.

ITV has also promised some tweaks to the competition format, with the notable addition of a Britain’s Got Talent-style ‘golden X’, which will enable the judges to fast-track their favourite candidates straight to the ‘judge’s houses’ stage.

Who will follow in the footsteps of 2017 winners Rak-Su? Find out by following the instructions below for streaming The X Factor 2018 online – both in the UK and for those people outside the UK.

We’ll also show you how to watch Great British Bake Off online

How to watch The X Factor 2018 online for free in the UK:

The X Factor has a 8pm slot each Saturday. ITV is still the home of the reality show favourite, meaning you can live stream the programme via the ITV Hub. The hub is also the destination you need for catching up after and for streaming the show on another device.

A further live streaming option for your mobile, tablet or computer is the free-to-use TVPlayer.com which has good quality, robust streaming.

Streaming The X Factor 2018 anywhere in the world for free:

For those outside of the UK that still want to follow this year’s X Factor action, the best bet is a VPN service. This means those travelling, on holiday, or living abroad can still get their fix of the show with an internet connection.

Once you get the right VPN you can enjoy a secure and speedy connection, even on open Wi-Fi networks like hotels, enabling you to tune in via TVPlayer.com.

And even if you’re not that IT savvy, don’t worry. Getting a VPN is really, really easy. We’ve listed how to do it in three easy steps below….

Image courtesy of itv.com

Juicero is still the greatest example of Silicon Valley stupidity – CNET

I can’t stop thinking about Juicero.

It haunts me. I see Juicero in my sleep. It comes to me in my dreams.

The $400 Wi-Fi-connected juicer, billed by company founder Doug Evans as “the first at home cold-pressed juicing system” promised so much when it launched in 2016.

I can’t stop thinking about Juicero.

It haunts me. I see Juicero in my sleep. It comes to me in my dreams.

The $400 Wi-Fi-connected juicer, billed by company founder Doug Evans as “the first at home cold-pressed juicing system” promised so much when it launched in 2016. It promised convenience. Wellness. A world where a glass of fresh juice in the morning didn’t require you to squeeze pulpy citrus between your bare hands like a monkey.

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It was as simple as pulling out a “produce pack” (a sachet of prechopped fruits and vegetables), securing it between the Juicero’s flat squeezing plates and pressing a button to get instant cold-pressed juice.

It was Silicon Valley’s answer to the massive trend toward healthy living and cold-press juicing. It was a cure for the inherent frailty of the human condition.

But on Sept. 1, 2017, one year ago today, Juicero imploded in a dazzling shitshow of Silicon Valley bluster, techno hype and something about the threat of global spinach recalls.

One year on, the question remains: What have we learnt from the downfall of the world’s most overhyped juice loosener?

Trust the system

A few weeks ago, I found myself in a fugue state, mumbling about the internet-connected juicing machine that briefly promised to change the world, one glass of beetroot liquid at a time.

“Remember Juicero?!” I muttered to colleagues who most definitely did remember Juicero, largely because of how often I talk about it. They’d learned to tune me out.

“Juicero…” I’d whisper to myself. “What a time to be alive.”

If my colleagues had tuned back in and listened to my increasingly wild-eyed juice rants (they didn’t), they’d have known I wasn’t just referring to the Juicero machine. I was ruminating on the whole phenomenon, what Juicero’s final CEO, Jeff Dunn, called “the sum of the system .”

Kind of like how that first Dianetics book you bought opened you up to a lifetime of pricey thetan cleansing courses, the juicing machine itself was just the first entry point into a more expensive self-help lifestyle. Sure, there was the machine, but there were also produce packs that the machine squeezed — colourful bloodbags of prepulped fruit and vegetables with flavour names such as “sweet roots”. And there was the app that told you the origins of your food and sent reminders if your packs were about to expire.

Remember when you decided how fresh food was by smelling it, not by scanning a QR code?

Juicero knew how to pitch to buzzy coastal elites: Sell them the hardware, then get them on the hook forever by signing them up for a subscription “farm to glass” juice service. (Subscription juice. Stop hitting yourself, Silicon Valley.)

The company’s whole aesthetic — from its machines, to its website to its advertising — took a leaf out of Jony Ive’s Apple design book, with sleek lines, poppy colours and a lot of white. “Perfected by Earth,” the Juicero billboards read. “Pressed by us.” If the machine was the giant juice-squeezing iPod, the Produce Packs were the 99-cent tracks you digested every morning.

The investors were on board — Juicero secured $70 million in Series B funding and looked set to succeed. The sleek machine, the connected app, the five flavours (and their corresponding chakras/packet colours) were all targeted at cashed-up Californians who wanted to actuate the gastro-intestinal wellness mood board they’d created at last year’s Cupertino Ayurvedic Cleansing Retreat.

Juicing was hard. Juicero was easy. Take my money.

Then Bloomberg came in and ruined everything.

Juice hacking

In April 2017, in a video that will never not be funny, Bloomberg showed that Juicero’s produce packs were essentially giant ketchup sachets of fruit and vegetable pulp that you could scoop straight out of the bag and squeeze with your hands.

No need to scan the QR code on the bag. No need to sync the app. No need to insert the produce pack into the Juicero. In fact, you could ditch that compost squeeze-box altogether — just use your meat hooks and mash that fruit pulp like God intended! The Juicero’s plates (plates that could supposedly create enough pressure to lift two Teslas) were effectively nothing more than two giant, Wi-Fi connected hands doing what your own hands could do. Your hands were a Juicero, but in airplane mode.

Overnight, Juicero turned into the Fyre Festival of the appliance world, universally scorned as a symbol of Silicon Valley hubris and the answer to a question everyone realised they maybe, sorta, hadn’t been asking.

We know hacking consumer products is nothing new.”
Juicero CEO Jeff Dunn

In response, Dunn penned a breathless open letter trying to convince the world his company hadn’t monetised the same process toddlers use to squeeze paint from a tube.

“We know hacking consumer products is nothing new,” he said.

Us normies — or those of us living outside the post-raw-vegan subscription juicing world — were told by Dunn, “The value of Juicero is more than a glass of cold-pressed juice. Much more.”

That value included produce packs that were “calibrated by flavor.” It included the “connected data” that Juicero used to manage its supply chain. Or the fact that Juicero could “remotely disable Produce Packs if there is, for example, a spinach recall.”

I’d been doing it all wrong. Here I was, using the supply chain of my legs and feet to walk to the grocer to buy oranges. I’d “hack” the fruit by mushing it over a juicing cone, occasionally licking my hands like a child. Then I’d enjoy this hand-squeezed abomination in front of the morning news, watching breaking news about global spinach recalls in comfort and style.

But apparently my low-fi hand hacking is not how things are done in Silicon Valley.

Internet of Shit

Juicero represented everything the world hates about Silicon Valley “disruption” in one single product.

We’re constantly told by startups and disruptors that legacy industries need to be shaken up. That the tech world needs to “move fast and break things”. But is the tech world really making life better? Do we really need to reinvent the stuff that was actually pretty alright in the first place? Do I need to appify my apples?

Juicero was classic Internet of Shit (yes, that Twitter account will change your world). It took a traditional product and added so many bells and whistles it became an unrecognisable Homer car of unnecessary complications.

Juicero isn’t alone in this world. Scan the website of any Silicon Valley venture capital firm and you’ll find plenty of startups reinventing the stuff you used to take for granted.

Feather, the service that lets you “subscribe to your furniture”. Washboard, the company that charged $27 to send you $20 of laundry quarters every month. Connected footwear. Subscription protein powder. Subscription perfume. Subscription underwear.

I don’t want to subscribe to my couch. I don’t want it to start buffering because my monthly credit card payment didn’t go through. I don’t want to have to recharge my shoes or answer a personality quiz to find my protein powder match. And I don’t want to have to work out a unique password to stop my underwear getting hacked.

Putting the ‘Hydra’ in hydration

Juicero might be dead, but it still consumes my every waking thought. My Twitter feed is filled with paranoid rants about subscription juicing. I sit at my desk, making gentle ninja hand movements and quietly singing “Jui-cero!” to myself like Homer Simpson singing the Max Power theme song.

But while Juicero is gone, I’m still waiting for another two identical companies to spring up in its place. The first tribute has already arrived: An at-home cold-press juicer out of China called the Julavie, which launched in 2017 and kicked off a crowdfunding campaign last month.

What household mainstay is going to get a connected makeover next? And where does this all end? What will happen if I don’t agree to the privacy policy on my fridge? Is some hacker going to create a botnet out of internet-connected coffee tables? Is my toaster going to stop working because there’s been a global pumpernickel recall?

I’m not saying we have to stop innovating or cut the tech out of our lives. But I also didn’t ask for the perfect storm we’ve somehow woken up in: a Silicon Valley amalgam of tech-bro babysitting, post-Goop wellness and the internet-of-spinach.

Let me live a simple life. Let me get back to nature. Let me squeeze fruit with my damn, dirty ape-hands.

‘Hello, humans’: Google’s Duplex could make Assistant the most lifelike AI yet.

Taking It to Extremes: Mix insane situations — erupting volcanoes, nuclear meltdowns, 30-foot waves — with everyday tech. Here’s what happens.

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The best Vodafone broadband deals in September 2018

We know what you may be thinking – “since when did Vodafone do broadband deals?” Well it’s been around three years since the mobile phone network entered the rat-race of providing home internet and it’s proving itself to be one of the most cost effective exponents of cheap broadband on the UK market.

We know what you may be thinking – “since when did Vodafone do broadband deals?” Well it’s been around three years since the mobile phone network entered the rat-race of providing home internet and it’s proving itself to be one of the most cost effective exponents of cheap broadband on the UK market. You can get the best Vodafone broadband deals from its website.

Vodafone has some of the most fantastic prices for superfast fibre broadband around, which immediately gets on board. But on top of that, it has recently announced that it will become the first UK internet provider to guarantee its minimum speeds, with discounted bills available if it fails to live up to the promise. Top marks for that!

If you already know the Vodafone internet deal you want, it’s easy to select it from our comparison tool above. But if you’re still deciding, then scroll down for more information about what it offers.

See also: Broadband deals | BT broadband deals | Virgin broadband deals | Sky broadband deals | Fibre broadband deals | Broadband and TV deals


Vodafone broadband packages compared – what broadband speed can I get with Vodafone?

Vodafone offers only two different speed options, having completely ditched standard ADSL altogether. It now exclusively sells fibre broadband. What you decide to get will depend on your budget and home internet use:

Vodafone Superfast 1

Vodafone Superfast 1 is among the cheapest fibre broadband deals on the market right now. The monthly payments are super cheap and there are no activation or delivery fees to pay upfront. So pop your postcode in our comparison chart at the top of the page, to see whether your home can get Vodafone’s 38Mb speeds. Vodafone Superfast 1 includes:

Up to 38Mb speedGuaranteed minimum speed of 25MbVodafone Broadband routerUnlimited data usageHome phone lineSix months’ free F-Secure SAFE antivirus

Vodafone Superfast 2

An extra fiver a month allows you to crank up the speed to a maximum of 76Mb (9.5MB per second). That’s money well spent if you have a house full of people all trying to use the internet at once, or have a penchant for streaming the latest 4K Ultra HD films and box-sets. Again, for the speeds you get, this is excellent value. Vodafone Superfast 2 includes:

Up to 76Mb speedGuaranteed ninimum speed of 55MbVodafone Broadband routerUnlimited data usageHome phone lineSix months’ free F-Secure SAFE antivirus

To sign up to any of these packages, you can head to the Vodafone website.

Can I add call plans to Vodafone broadband?

Vodafone used to stick to offering broadband only, but has now begun to allow you to add call packages too. For a few pounds more a month you can add unlimited evening and weekend calls, while its Anytime Landline and Mobile package is close to a tenner per month extra. There’s also an international bolt-on you can add if you have friends and family in distance climes.

To add a broadband and phone plan, you have to choose your internet deal first and then Vodafone will let you add your chosen calling package.


Does Vodafone do any broadband and TV deals?

If you’re looking for a one-stop shop for broadband and TV plans, then you’ll have to keep hunting. Vodafone doesn’t currently offer these add-ons (although Vodafone TV may not be far away…). Head to our best broadband and TV deals guide and use the comparison chart to narrow down your ideal all-round package.

What is the Ultra-Smart Vodafone Connect Router?

This is the free router you get when you sign up for Vodafone fibre broadband. You don’t even have to pay to have it delivered! You can control the router from your mobile if you download Vodafone’as app, which lets you see who’s connected and change your Wi-Fi password.

Another rather nice touch is that the router’s LED lights (which can often be something of an irritant out the corner of your eye) can be turned off, or only come on when you pass your hand over them.

How long will my Vodafone broadband contract last?

This is very straightforward indeed – all Vodafone broadband contracts last for 18 months. So if you’re adamant on only committing to your internet provider for a year, then you’ll have to continue your search for cheap broadband deals.

To transfer to Vodafone now, head to our comparison table at the top of this page and narrow down your perfect plan. Alternatively, you can head straight to the Vodafone website.

The best BT broadband deals in September 2018

Our favourite BT broadband deal:

BT is one of the first names you think of when choosing a broadband provider and its range of packages is varied. If you want BT internet, you can narrow down the best deals above – enter your postcode and we’ll do the rest.

Our favourite BT broadband deal:

BT is one of the first names you think of when choosing a broadband provider and its range of packages is varied. If you want BT internet, you can narrow down the best deals above – enter your postcode and we’ll do the rest.

We’ve found all of the cheapest prices currently on offer for standard speed internet and BT Superfast fibre broadband – just pop in your postcode above and we’ll do the rest. And if you want more than just broadband, we’ll show you the best phone and television deals, too. Down the page, we’ll answer some commonly asked questions about BT internet.

Prefer to order by phone? Then call 0800-587-1366 and speak to an adviser dedicated to BT broadband deals.

See also:Broadband deals | Sky broadband deals | Virgin broadband deals | Fibre broadband deals

BT broadband packages compared – which is the best for me?

All BT broadband deals now feature unlimited data allowances. So the main choice you’ll face with BT is what speed to go for. Standard ADSL broadband gives speeds of up to 17Mb which will probably give you a max download speed of around 2MB per second. Upgrade to BT Superfast – the company’s fibre optic offering – and you can choose between 52Mb and a super fast 76Mb.

After that, you can pay more to add home phone options and a TV subscription – although you may find some package bargains around Black Friday time. The latter includes a YouView box and access to the BT TV package of your choice – more on which below.

BT Unlimited Broadband
BT’s most affordable broadband offer gives up to 17Mb speed – that’s just over 2MB per second. That should still be plenty fast enough to let you browse the web, stream music and watch interruption-free catch-up TV. But it may struggle to cope with larger households all using the internet at once. BT Unlimited Broadband includes:

Up to 17Mb speedBT Home Hub 4 router100GB of BT cloud storageBT Virus Protect for two devices

BT Superfast Fibre Unlimited
If fibre broadband is available where you live and you have a few extra pounds to spare a month, we’d recommend cranking up the speed to BT’s least expensive Superfast deal. At 52Mb (roughly 6.5MB/s), it’s got the legs to seamlessly deliver HD video and fast downloads, even when there are a few of you using it. BT Superfast Fibre Unlimited includes:

Up to 52Mb speedBT Smart Hub100GB of BT cloud storageBT Virus Protect for two devices

BT Superfast Fibre 2 Unlimited
If you demand extremely fast downloads and stream 4K films and TV, then BT’s fastest broadband (76Mb) is well worth considering – especially if you’ve got a bustling household all trying to log in at once. It’s pricey, but BT sweetens the deal with some added extras. BT Superfast Fibre 2 Unlimited includes:

Up to 76Mb speedBT Smart Hub500GB of BT cloud storageBT Virus Protect for 15 devices

What BT router will I get?

BT throws in a router for free (although you’ll have to pay for the delivery). The quality of router you receive will depend on the package you choose.

BT Home Hub Go for standard BT Unlimited Broadband and you’ll get the basic Home Hub 4. You’ve probably seen it sneakily peering at you from around corners in the homes of umpteen friends and families, although its dimensions are sleek enough that you should be able to stow it somewhere subtle without too much trouble. As well as wi-fi, you can also connect to it via an ethernet cable. It’s perfectly functional, but doesn’t have the same strength as the…

BT Smart Hub Pay £65 extra or upgrade to BT Superfast and you’ll receive the more powerful Smart Hub. BT claims that it gives out the UK’s most powerful wi-fi signal among the routers sent out by other major providers. Handy if you live in a big house or like to use your phone or laptop out in the garden.

Alternatively, you can stick with your existing router. But unless you’ve shelled out a lot for your current model, you’re probably better off swallowing the delivery charge and using the BT Home Hub or Smart Hub. That way, if anything goes wrong, you’ll be able to use their tech support.

How long will the contract be?

Take BT broadband, and you’ll be tied into a 18 month contract. After that, your monthly cost will go up by around a tenner. To encourage you to hang around, you can’t use your BT router with any other broadband provider so you’ll need to pay for a new one when you move on.

Are there any BT broadband AND TV deals?

There are three TV packages that you can add to your BT internet package, but you’ll need to sign up for 12 months:

Starter BT is chucking in its Starter TV package if you get Superfast – which includes 80 channels, together with BT’s entry-level YouView box. It costs extra if you go for standard broadband.

Entertainment Plus You can splash out an extra few quid a month for BT’s Entertainment Plus package. This includes 110 channels and a YouView+ box to record up to 300 hours.

Total Entertainment If you’re totally addicted to films and box sets, then it may be worth spending £15-ish a month on Total Entertainment. This is a must if you have a 4K TV, as BT throws in its YouView+ Ultra HD box. It can record 600 hours of video to help you keep abreast of the 141 channels it gives you access to.

What about BT Sport?

Until recently, BT Sport came free with every BT internet plan. That’s come to an end now…you’ll have to pay an extra £3.50 a month to get access to Premier League football, Ashes cricket, top-flight rugby union and exclusive UFC action. Keep your eyes peeled however, as BT does run the occasional promotion where you can still get BT Sport for free.

Can I make calls from a landline?

You can indeed. No matter which BT broadband package you opt for, you get a landline phone number with unlimited weekend calls to other UK landlines. If you prefer nattering in the evening you can pay extra for unlimited landline calls between 7pm and 7am. While more still lets you make as many landline calls as you want at any time of the day. You’ll be covered by free BT Call Protect as well, which will help to halt nuisance calls.

Can I add BT Mobile?

To goad you into bringing all your devices over to BT, it’s offering £5 a month off your monthly mobile phone tariff. BT Mobile has deals on all the biggest and newest handsets, including iPhones and Samsung Galaxys. In particular, that makes BT pretty competitive when it comes to SIM only deals.

What is BT cloud storage?

If you find yourself running out of storage space on your phone, tablet or laptop or want to back up your files, BT has its own cloud storage solution. With BT Unlimited Broadband and Superfast Fibre, you’ll get 100GB – that’s enough room for around 25,000 songs, 140 films or 100,000 photos. It’s 500GB if you go for Superfast 2, which should be sufficient to store the music and photo collections of you and your family.

What is BT Virus Protect?

All BT broadband packages include BT’s internet security tool, BT Virus Protect. As well as promising to vanquish viruses, it features BT Web Protect to flag phishing scams, BT Parental Controls to help you limit the websites your children can see and True Key for easy management of your passwords. As well as your main computer, you can apply BT Virus Protect to one other laptop, phone or tablet if you go for Broadband Unlimited or Superfast Fibre. While Fibre 2 lets you protect up to 15 devices. We still think you should get dedicated internet security however – check out our pick of the best antivirus software.

What’s a BT wi-fi hotspot?

BT has dotted five million wi-fi hotspots around the UK and 18 million around the globe. As a BT Broadband customer, you’ll have access to every one of them. So if you’re on your laptop in a cafe or checking maps on your phone and see that BT Wi-fi is available, you can jump on for free.

Are there any other perks to getting BT broadband?

As well as the discounted mobile tariffs and cut price BT Sport, BT is luring in new customers with a BT Reward Card. This online exclusive means you can claim a prepaid Mastercard cash card if you sign up to BT Broadband.

The sum on the Reward Card changes regularly, but is usually in excess of £50 –
and sometimes as much as £150. The amount on the card is always more with one of the BT Superfast packages.

Is BT broadband any good?

BT relies a lot on its enduring reputation as the most recognisable name in telecommunications, and it remains the most widely used broadband provider in the UK. But that doesn’t necessarily equate to quality. Although it can offer competitive prices and bespoke internet, phone and TV packages, it often sits at the bottom of the list when it comes to customer satisfaction surveys.

How to use the BT broadband checker?

Much like our postcode checker above, BT has its own broadband checker. Pop in your address and phone number and it will let you know what speeds you can expect with BT internet and whether its Superfast broadband is available in your area. If fibre isn’t yet available, you can sign up to BT’s mailing list so that they’ll give you a shout when the cables have been installed.

How do I contact the BT broadband helpline?

If you need help with your broadband or set-up, BT doesn’t exactly make it easy for you to speak to them on the phone. It seems to prefer for you to go through its online support. But if you’re determined to speak to a human, there is a 24/7 number available. Dial 0800-111-4567 if you’re using a landline in the UK, 0330-123-4567 from your mobile or +44179-359-6931 if you’re out of the country.

Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City Offers Guests Beauty And Serenity With Grand Opening Of Rock Spa® & Salon

The official Grand Opening of the new Rock Spa® & Salon, Body Rock Fitness Center and Juice Bar took place on Thursday, August 30 and featured an exclusive evening reception with the 51 Miss America candidates, who kicked-off their competition festivities in Atlantic City the same day.

The official Grand Opening of the new Rock Spa® & Salon, Body Rock Fitness Center and Juice Bar took place on Thursday, August 30 and featured an exclusive evening reception with the 51 Miss America candidates, who kicked-off their competition festivities in Atlantic City the same day. The Rock Spa’s grand opening celebration included a special ribbon-cutting ceremony and guided tours of the spa, salon and the new fitness center facility.

The spa features 31 newly designed treatment rooms, which include 20 dedicated massage rooms, four facial rooms, two couples suites, three body treatment rooms and two Rhythm & Motion rooms, a full-service salon, including manicures, pedicures, make-up, barber and hair services. Guests can choose from a variety of spa and salon services and packages ideal for a single service or full-day escape. Separate ladies and gentlemen’s areas include spacious locker rooms, and lounges with steam and sauna leading to a coed Vitality pool area featuring a large heated hydrotherapy tub, ambient temperature tub and specialty shower with three different experiences (Cool Mist, Caribbean Rain and Atlantic Ocean). Rock Spa® & Salon offers a variety of full body treatments and massages, including deep tissue, romantic couples experiences, athletic and therapeutic restoration needs. Whether it’s a girlfriends’ getaway, bridal party, or just a desire to spa like a Rock Star, the private VIP spa suite is perfect for small groups. Guests can refuel at the spa juice bar, serving fresh juice, smoothies, and healthy choices, and remain active during stays at Body Rock® Fitness Center, featuring state-of-the-art Technogym cardio and circuit training equipment. Fitness happens on the guest’s schedule with Fitness On Demand, providing instant access to more than 200 premium fitness classes.

More Zeppelin than Zen, the Rock Spa® & Salon features the brand’s signature Rhythm & Motion menu of spa services offering the world’s first fully immersive music-centric treatments that utilize amplified vibrations, pressures and patterns. This groundbreaking experience takes guests on a rhythmic massage journey – bass vibrations ripple through the massage table as treble beats come from above, sending pulses through the body and leaving guests feeling energized and invigorated.

For more information on Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City or to book a stay, please visit hardrockhotelatlanticcity.com

About Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City

Set on 17 acres, with the legendary Atlantic City boardwalk as its backdrop, Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City will be Atlantic City’s go-to entertainment destination, boasting 2,200 slots, 120 table games, more than 20 first-class restaurants and lounges, and world-class entertainment, including Hard Rock Live at Etess Arena, the beachside Sound Waves and Howie Mandel’s Comedy Club. The hotel also features the iconic Hard Rock Cafe, overlooking the Atlantic City Boardwalk, showcasing a brand new elevated menu and state-of-the-art stage, allowing for an amplified level of service and entertainment. Along with an endless array of upscale amenities, including world-class shopping and the brand’s signature full-service Rock Spa and Salon, featuring 31 treatment rooms, the new, music-inspired property offers lavish guest rooms and suites, with stunning views of the city and Atlantic Ocean. From family vacations and business trips to weddings, Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City offers an unparalleled experience. Each of the hotel’s guest rooms and suites radiates a contemporary style, including Hard Rock’s signature The Sound of Your Stay™ music amenity program, which allows guests to set the mood with complimentary vinyl records or jam out on a Fender guitar in the privacy of their own room. Hotel guests can enjoy high speed, property-wide Wi-Fi, 24 Hour In-Room Dining, towel and chair service at Hard Rock Beach or at the indoor pool, and 24-Hour Access to Body Rock fitness. For more information and to book your stay, please visit hardrockhotelatlanticcity.com.

Hard Rock International

With venues in 74 countries, including 185 cafes, 25 hotels and 12 casinos, Hard Rock International (HRI) is one of the most globally recognized companies. Beginning with an Eric Clapton guitar, Hard Rock owns the world’s greatest collection of music memorabilia, which is displayed at its locations around the globe. Hard Rock is also known for its collectible fashion and music-related merchandise, Hard Rock Live performance venues and an award-winning website. HRI owns the global trademark for all Hard Rock brands. The company owns, operates and franchises Cafes in iconic cities including London, New York, San Francisco, Sydney and Dubai. HRI also owns, licenses and/or manages hotel/casino properties worldwide. Destinations include the company’s two most successful Hotel and Casino properties in Tampa and Hollywood, FL., both owned and operated by HRI parent company The Seminole Tribe of Florida, as well as other exciting locations including Atlantic City, Bali, Cancun, Daytona Beach, Ibiza, Las Vegas, and San Diego. Upcoming new Hard Rock Cafe locations include, Maldives, Manila, Malaga, Georgetown, Fortaleza, Casablanca and Chengdu. Upcoming new Hard Rock Cafe locations include, Maldives, Manila, Malaga, Georgetown, Fortaleza, Casablanca and Jinan in China. New Hard Rock Hotel, Casino or Hotel & Casinoprojects include Atlanta, Berlin, Budapest, Desaru Coast, Dublin, London, Los Cabos, Maldives, New York City, Ottawa, Dalian and Haikou in China. For more information on Hard Rock International visit www.hardrock.com.

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Golf’s digital ambitions make it an unlikely 5G pioneer

For a sport which has a governing body called the ‘Royal & Ancient Golf Club’, golf is proving surprisingly progressive with its use of technology – especially with regards to 5G and broadcasting.

For a sport which has a governing body called the ‘Royal & Ancient Golf Club’, golf is proving surprisingly progressive with its use of technology – especially with regards to 5G and broadcasting.

As is the case with so many other sports, golf is competing not only with the likes of football, basketball and other disciplines, but also with other forms of entertainment like Netflix for people’s attention.

And with younger demographics, which might have shorter attention spans and see golf as a more traditional sport, the challenge is that much greater.

Digital priorities

But mobile technology is seen as the answer in not only attracting younger people to the sport, but also to make its broadcasts more dynamic and more efficient.

European Tour CTO Michael Cole, for example, sees his organisation as an entertainment and content company that can appeal to multiple geographies and age groups, especially those that can’t attend an event.

Part of his remit is to transform the European Tour’s systems and infrastructure, and this is why it has signed up with Tata Communications. Each year, the Tour operates 47 events in 30 countries across five continents – a schedule that necessitates the rapid rollout of IT equipment across an entire golf course in a matter of days.

The Tata partnership helps deliver a consistent experience at each venue and will eventually see the creation of proof-of-concepts for Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) experiences that will attract new audiences.

5G broadcasting

And this is where 5G could have a role to play. The first 5G networks are expected to go live later this year, delivering gigabit speeds, high capacity and, crucially, ultra-low latency.

The ability for mobile operators to move more functions to the edge of the network will bring them closer to the end user, allowing for the almost real time performance of VR and AR applications, as well as drone cameras. What’s more, the increased bandwidth will be able handle 4K Ultra-High Definition (UHD) feeds.

At present, broadcasting golf events involves the use of wired and wireless infrastructure located around the course. For the 2018 US Open at Shinnecock Hills, US broadcaster Fox Sports deployed 38 miles and 706 strands of fibre cables, 848 Ethernet Ports and 91 distinct managed networks managing 3Gbps of internet data and 73Gbps of broadcast data.

The use of 5G could not only limit the amount of cabling that needs to be strung around the course, making broadcasting more cost efficient, but also power VR and AR experiences that will attract new viewers.

At the same event, Fox Sports used Intel’s 5G Mobile Trial Platform on the seventh hole to transmit a 4K feed. Ericsson network equipment transmitted the 1.6Gbps feed using AT&T’s millimetre Wave (mmWave) spectrum to Fox Sports’ production truck, which then encoded and decoded the stream for broadcast.

“The high-speed and low-latency delivered by this trial allows the cameras to move without being restricted by cables and create a unique filming environment,” added Melissa Arnoldi, president of AT&T Technology Operations. “We believe live sports will be transformed by 5G – whether it’s virtual and augmented realities for those watching from afar or how connected sensors could help analyze golf swings, wind conditions, even the speed of greens for the golfer in future U.S. Opens.”

Another key element of 5G is network slicing, a feature which allows operators to effectively create virtual networks for individual users. In this case, broadcasters would use a separate slice to public safety teams, operations and the general public. Some even believe that entirely private 5G networks will be a possibility, with industrial giants bidding for spectrum, however the most obvious use case for this would be at a plant or factory.

Future advances

“We’ve never worked with technology that is as revolutionary as 5G before — the sky is really the limit on what is possible,” added Fox Sports’ Michael Davies.

The one event in Golf that tends to appeal to more casual fans is the Ryder Cup – a biennial matchplay contest between Europe and the US’s finest golfers.

This year’s tournament takes place at Le National Golf Club in Paris, France, and making sure the public Wi-Fi is up to scratch has been a key consideration for organisers, with Hewlett-Packard Enterprise (HPE) helping create a network that can support up to 51,000 users each day and organisers’ needs.

As sports organisations seek new audiences and growth in an era of unprecedented entertainment choice, the use of mobile technology and connectivity is a tool that cannot be ignored.

What is 5G? Everything you need to know

Best of IFA 2018: 8K TV, an epic gaming throne, Google’s new wearable OS and more – CNET

Fear not, America. Even though many of the products announced here at IFA won’t come to the U.S., Europe’s largest trade show, we still saw plenty of new things to get excited about that will hit the market globally.

Fear not, America. Even though many of the products announced here at IFA won’t come to the U.S., Europe’s largest trade show, we still saw plenty of new things to get excited about that will hit the market globally. For every Europe-only smart oven from Bosch or AEG/.Electrolux, we found an exciting TV, a laptop, a wearable, and even networking hardware that will show up at your U.S. retailer, online or otherwise.

If you’d like to see a deep dive into the announcements from IFA, we’ve wrapped it all up for you here. Here you’ll find just the stuff we thought stood out the most this year.

Samsung Q900 8K television

Even if there’s not enough content to really take advantage of an 8K screen yet, the march towards ever-finer TV resolution seems likely to resonate with consumers more than curved displays or 3D support. LG also made 8K news by reiterating its commitment from CES 2018 to bring out an 8K OLED display, but it was Samsung’s 85-inch Q900 that made the biggest impression at IFA.

Unlike its competitors, Samsung had the 8K Q900 television on display at its booth on the show floor, for anyone to walk up to, with the promise to start selling it this October. The price — potentially five-figures — and the lack of content will keep the Q900 from taking any noticeable market share, but its release will be one of the first steps on the way to finding out if consumers are willing to march along to the cadence of higher resolution TVs. They will be, especially once the price premium for 8K starts to shrink away, as it quickly did with 4K.

Read our preview of the Samsung Q900.

Google Wear OS watches

The apparent leak of what appears to be the next Apple Watch — expected to be unveiled at Apple’s September 12 event — is raising the stakes in the smartwatch wars. But Google isn’t standing still: The company expanded its own wearable plans at IFA to get ahead of the Apple PR wave. Google’s Wear OS (formerly known as Android Wear) is an update to its wearable operating system that incorporates heart rate tracking and other health-oriented features (wrapped in the Google Fit branding) as well as easier notification navigation system and tighter integration with Google Assistant, Google’s AI-drive voice assistant.

The Skagen, Diesel, and Casio Wear OS smart watches that debuted at IFA might not be the most advanced Google-powered wearables you’ll see this year. As our own Scott Stein points out, Google itself might introduce a Pixel-branded Wear OS watch later this year, and Qualcomm’s smartwatch event is just days away. Still, the time for Google to build up enthusiasm for Wear OS is now, before Apple captures all the excitement for smartwatches this year, and potentially an even more dominant share of the wearable market.

Read: Google’s Wear OS updates hint at a wave of fitness smartwatches to come

Read: Smartwatch makers try to get a jump on Apple with fitness push

Lenovo Yoga Book C930

We saw a lot of laptops in Berlin, including this gaming system from Acer, and a premium two-in-one Chromebook from Dell, but Lenovo’sYoga Book C930 was the most innovative of the bunch. An E Ink keyboard is the highlight of this convertible Windows laptop, replacing the LED-based second screen on previous YogaBook models.

With E Ink, the keyboard gains a more tactile feeling when you type on it, and a dynamic virtual touchpad that can adjust its size to minimize accidental presses.

Lenovo amped up the speed on this model, replacing Atom from the previous gen with Core m5 and Core i5 chip options. It also has a gimmicky-but-cute knock-to-open feature, whereby you rap your knuckles on the top of the display when it’s closed, and via an accelerometer and a system of magnets, the laptop opens up, seemingly by magic. The Yoga Book C930 goes on sale in October, for a starting price of $999, with international pricing and availability still to come.

Read our preview of the Lenovo Yoga Book C930.

Netgear Orbi Voice

First, you buy a wireless router. Then, when you find your router doesn’t extend your network to your basement entertainment center, you buy a mesh Wi-Fi extender. Follow all of that with an Amazon Echo or Google Home speaker, and all of a sudden your home feels overtaken by hardware, like an onset of plastic-shrouded fungus.

Like a squirt of bleach, the Netgear Orbi Voice wants to tame that infestation of technology. For $430 or £430 (which converts to AU$585), you can pick up the Netgear Orbi Voice Kit, which nets you the new Orbi Voice speaker/mesh Wi-Fi-extender, as well as a standalone Orbi router to connect to your modem. With that, you get a best-in-class mesh wireless network to bring Wi-Fi to every corner of your home, as well as an speaker equipped with Amazon Alexa. The Orbi Voice unit itself also has a pair of Ethernet jacks to facilitate adding more networked devices via a hardwired connection.

If you’re already an Orbi mesh router owner, you can buy the Orbi Voice speaker by itself for $300/£280 later this fall. The kit version goes on sale at the end of September.

Read our preview of the Netgear Orbi Voice.

Acer Thronos

LG’s robot pants (fine, “robotic exoskeleton”) might ease the burden for manual laborers one day, but if we have to choose between over-the-top entrants this year, Acer’s Predator Thronos captured our hearts and then sliced them in half. A PC gaming pod comprised of a recliner and a motorized arm that supports three 27-inch monitors, you can climb into this thing and slide back to 140 degrees of gaming immersion. Acer gave no specifics on price (expensive), availability (“never, since this is tradeshow bait” seems not unlikely) or death blossom capability.

Read our preview of the Acer Predator Thronos gaming chair.

Missing from Berlin: Smartphone wow factor

We saw plenty of new phones unveiled in Berlin, but nothing in the mobile space felt like a “best of show” candidate this year. They all exuded the same sort of “evolutionary, not revolutionary” restraint that has dominated the peak smartphone era: It’s hard to get excited about minor updates like the BlackBerry Key2 LE, Sony Xperia XZ3 and HTC U12 Life. Meanwhile, models that are potentially more exciting, like those teased by Huawei, don’t seem destined to be arriving in the US anytime soon — or ever.

Blame Samsung, Apple and Google. Those titans of the smartphone space studiously avoided IFA, opting to go earlier — Samsung’s Galaxy Note 9 debuted in Brooklyn earlier this month — or later. Apple’s big reveal will be September 12, and Google’s new Pixel phones are coming October 9, according to at least one published report. (The latter appear to be popping up in Russia, in the meantime.) Those are the phones will be talking about through the end of the year and beyond.

Maybe, with 5G wireless inching ever closer to reality, next year’s IFA will be a more eventful show for mobile.

IFA 2018: Here’s everything we’ve seen at this year’s show.


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IFA 2018: All the coolest tech we’ve seen so far

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Best of IFA 2018: 8K TV, an epic gaming throne, Google’s new wearable OS and more
Aug 31
B&O’s new BeoSound Edge is a powerfully puckish AirPlay speaker
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IFA 2018: All the coolest tech we’ve seen so far
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JBL Charge 4 Bluetooth speaker gets some key upgrades

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IFA 2018: Everything we’ve seen at Europe’s biggest tech show – CNET

IFA 2018 has fulfilled our expectations both for practical upgrades and wild innovations. Wednesday and Thursday offered all manner of surprises, and the hits kept coming on Friday. Check out the highlights of what we’ve seen in Berlin below.

IFA 2018 has fulfilled our expectations both for practical upgrades and wild innovations. Wednesday and Thursday offered all manner of surprises, and the hits kept coming on Friday. Check out the highlights of what we’ve seen in Berlin below. All of today’s new headlines are highlighted in bold.

Stay tuned — IFA’s press days are over at this point, and the show is now open to the public, but we’ll continue to keep this post updated with the final cool, crazy and interesting stuff we spot as we’re finishing our coverage of the show.

Appliances and smart home

From see-through fridges to dishwashers that lift racks themselves, IFA often shows off crazy new features in the ordinarily practical category of appliances. IFA 2018 has been no different. Not all of these ideas will ever see the light of day, let alone come to the US, but it’s still neat to know there’s a fridge out there with a built-in lazy susan.

Lenovo’s got new smart home gadgets to go with that fancy Smart Display
LG pushes hands-free help in the kitchen with Google-powered smart display
Nanoleaf update: Touch-sensitive Canvas panels coming Dec. 1
Neato fills out vacuum lineup with nods to value seekers, pet owners
This boring switch might be the best Philips Hue gadget yet
Philips Hue’s smart lights will work with Siri Shortcuts this fall
Sharp put a vacuum sealer in its new four-door refrigerator
AEG’s MultiSpace fridge spins your groceries on a lazy susan shelfAEG ComfortLift dishwasher feature tells you if you’re ecofriendly
AEG SenseCook cooktops to provide automated cooking to home chefsBosch pitched a smart kitchen utopia at IFA 2018
Bosch doubles down on colorful fridges in Berlin, Americans green with envy?
Alexa and Google can tell Eufy’s new RoboVac to get cleaning
Eve Room 2 gives Siri an upgraded sense of smellEve puts Siri-enabled smarts in a power strip at IFA
Fibaro invites Samsung, IFTTT into its smart home
GE Appliances makes it easier to use Google Assistant in the kitchen
Haier’s new smart freezer is also a fridge when neededHiMirror Mini smart mirror crosses the Atlantic to judge EuropeansLG’s ‘wearable robot’ will transform the proletariat into unstoppable machines
LG’s Signature Wine Cellar lifts your selection to your hand at IFA
Miele’s newest dishwasher uses a disk to dispense detergent
Mitte wants to sell you your own bottled water operation
Yale’s new Sync security system gets Philips Hue, Alexa integrations
Smartwatches

Enough with the wild whims of appliance makers, let’s get practical. We’ve seen a host of smart watches and mobile gear all designed to help you get fit and feel stylish while doing it. Google kicked things off with an update of its Wear OS smartwatch platform, and plenty of vendors are already supporting it.

Casio amps up battery life for its Pro Trek outdoors smartwatch
Diesel’s big new fitness smartwatch with WearOS arrives in OctoberGarmin’s new ultraslim Vivosmart 4 gets more features, easier to use
Google’s Wear OS updates hint at a wave of fitness smartwatches to comeSkagen Falster 2 WearOS smartwatch adds all the fitness extras

PCs and laptops

Intel’s latest chip update is the basis for most of the new mainstream PCs coming from familiar brands this fall. From the world’s lightest 15-inch laptop to a parade of new monitors and VR accessories, IFA 2018 has a plethora of cool new computers and peripherals on show.


8
The new E Ink Lenovo Yoga Book makes a mark
Acer Predator Triton 900 gaming laptop has a screen you’ll flip over
Acer unveils superlight 15-inch laptop plus tons of gaming hardware at IFANew Asus ZenBooks pack power and Alexa into slim framesDell Inspiron Chromebook joins the $600 Chrome OS crowdNew Intel chips want to make your laptop connect, work and play betterLenovo ThinkPad X1 Extreme adds graphics chops to its top biz laptop
The Lenovo Yoga Book gets a second chapter

Phones

HTC, Sony, Huawei and more are putting their best phones forward to take on the titans of Samsung and Apple. From getting rid of bezels to cramming in extra power, the phones of IFA 2018 have taken a variety of approaches to standing out from the crowd.


14
BlackBerry Key2 LE dazzles with new colors and thinner bezels
Huawei beats its own phone to the punch with the Mate 20 Lite
Huawei’s Kirin 980 chip gives glimpse of Mate 20’s power
BlackBerry Key2 LE shows that color can be fun after all
HTC U12 Life is like the Pixel 2, only prettier
Huawei’s Honor teases upcoming almost bezel-less Magic 2
Sony Xperia XZ3 brings out the big guns to challenge the Galaxy S9
ZTE reveals first phone after Trump sanctions at IFA 2018

Audio

Smart speakers are everywhere. With Harman Kardon, Bang & Olufsen and more on board, we might finally be entering a phase in which smart speakers generally have the sound quality to match their built-in smarts. Plus, we saw headphones and Bluetooth speakers with their own quality-of-life upgrades, including a big leap ahead of its rivals for Sony’s noise-canceling headphones.


20
Sony SRS-XB501’s wireless speaker is the life of the party
Huawei joins the Alexa-powered smart speaker club with the AI Cube
Bang & Olufsen gives Google Assistant a fancy new home in BeoSound speakers
Bang & Olufsen’s BeoSound Edge is an enormous sonic hockey puckB&O Beoplay E6 in-ear wireless headphones charge while you listenHarman Kardon announces a metric ton of Google multiroom speakers
Jabra’s Elite Active 65t earphones now come in an Amazon Edition and more color options
Jaybird’s new X4 wireless sports headphones offer a more comfortable fit
Marshall Voice promises powerful and loud Alexa-enabled music
Netgear Orbi Voice: Harman Kardon speaker with Alexa and mesh Wi-Fi extender
Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless earphones to take on Apple’s AirPods
Sony WH-1000XM3 finally surpasses Bose as best noise-canceling headphone
Sony’s new SRS-XB501G is like a portable Apple HomePod that’s built to party
Sony’s cheap portable Bluetooth speaker attaches to your bag
Meet the new UE Boom 3 Bluetooth speaker
UE Megaboom 3 is more durable, has better bass and a ‘magic’ button
8K TVs, cameras and glowing gaming gear

Last but not least, IFA offered us a glimpse into the future of TVs with voice controls and extreme HD. We saw eye-melting gaming gear, old school cameras and a handful of highlights from other categories of tech.


11
Behold the Acer Predator Thronos gaming chair
Razer Kraken Tournament Edition brings THX Spatial Audio surround tech
Acer’s immersive Predator Thronos gaming chair offers a wild ridePolaroid takes the analog digital with OneStep+ instant film cameraSamsung 8K TV is 85 inches and 33 million pixels of overkill
Toshiba TVs with Alexa built-in let you drop the remote

Still on the docket for IFA: keynote presentations from Microsoft (Friday) and Amazon (Saturday).

If you want everything we’re seeing in Berlin, check out CNET’s IFA 2018 feed.


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IFA 2018: All the coolest tech we’ve seen so far

Our original IFA 2018 preview story from Aug. 27 follows:

IFA 2018, like most big technology trade shows, will showcase a mix of new tech products that fall predominantly into one of two buckets. The first bucket is the practical, more or less predictable one with iterative product updates. In here you’ll find the next flagship phone we all know is coming, or laptops with the newest Intel CPUs that show up on a regular schedule, like the tide.

The second bucket is home to all of the unexpected products. I think of it as the fun one, since this is where you find things like LG’s robotic pants and Segway roller shoes, but you also have to accept some frustration with all that novelty. You’ll find a lot of vaporware here, along with intriguing prototypes that will never see their way to the consumer market. If bucket one is filled with most likely real things you might go out and buy in time for the holidays this year, bucket two makes you think about what you might buy in five years, even if the product that gets you thinking will never exist.

CNET will be on the ground in Berlin, Germany to sort through all the buckets at IFA (Internationale Funkausstellung) this week. We’ve pulled from across our global editorial teams to contribute, including writers, photographers and video content creators from our offices in San Francisco, New York, London, Madrid and Louisville, KY.

Now Playing:Watch this: Here’s what we want to see at the IFA trade show
1:20
What to look out for

We expect plenty of real-world products and concepty headline-grabbing tech at IFA 2018. Here’s a non-exhaustive look at what we hope to see.

Amazon

I’d be surprised if Amazon announced any new Alexa or other hardware products at IFA, but the odds increase slightly given that Amazon’s vice president for smart home, Daniel Rausch, is delivering Amazon’s first ever IFA keynote speech this year. At a minimum, we’ll see the usual flood of third party products that you can interact with via an Alexa voice command, as well as devices in the vein of the Ecobee 4 smart thermostat and the GE Sol lamp that have an Alexa microphone built in.


36
IFA 2017: The biggest announcements from Berlin’s tech show

Google

Google has its fingers in so many pies that even without its own IFA press conference, between Chromebooks, wearables, Android mobile devices, Google Assistant products, the search giant will show up across nearly every product category on display in Berlin. Maybe we’ll finally catch a glimpse of Google Assistant-powered smart displays other than the Lenovo and JBL models. Given Bang & Olufsen’s four or five different press sessions, it’s a good bet its $1,750 Google Assistant speakers will be there too.

LG

LG has put a lot of emphasis on its ThinQ-branded AI development efforts this year. Despite a few AI-related hiccups at its CES press conference, the company launched ThinQ as an AI platform in January. Then, earlier this month, LG announced its plan to open an AI research center in Canada. LG has also said that its keynote speech on Friday will have a heavy AI focus. How its AI efforts manifest themselves in real-world products isn’t clear right now, but as long as we get the robotic pants, I’ll be happy.

Samsung

The Galaxy Note 9 has already landed, but Samsung will still likely give its new flagship smartphone plenty of airtime at IFA. More intriguing is some signage that popped up in Berlin depicting an 8K Samsung TV peeking out from behind a sheet, with the tag line “Prepare to be amazed at IFA.” Samsung debuted the better-than-4K screen at CES already, but with no release date or pricing information, so hopefully we’ll learn more here. Samsung is also usually good for a quirky appliance announcement or two, and of course we’ll be looking out for the Galaxy Home Bixby speaker.

Oddball stuff

Aside from LG’s SuitBot (the aforementioned robotic pants), I’m looking forward to Segway’s Drift W1 e-skates this year, although we’ve already taken them for a test roll. Flexible phone screen vendor Royole has a booth at the show we will definitely pay a visit. Panasonic’s robot fridge and Bosch’s X-Spect clothes and food scanner were standouts of IFA 2017. We’ll see if they or others can recreate the magic in 2018.

Where to find all the IFA news

The best way to follow all the developments from IFA this year is to keep an eye on our coverage throughout the week. You’ll find it all on our dedicated IFA page. You can also check IFA’s press conference schedule to see who’s presenting when. Here are the conferences we’ll be following especially closely, along with their starting time in Berlin (conversion tool here).

Wednesday
Acer: 10:30 a.m.
Panasonic: 3 p.m.

Thursday
Samsung: 10:45 a.m.
Philips: 12:15 p.m.
Electrolux 1 p.m.
Sony 1 p.m.

Friday
LG opening keynote: 10:30 a.m.
Huawei keynote: 2 p.m.
Microsoft keynote: 5 p.m.

Saturday
Amazon keynote: 10:30 a.m.

You can also keep tabs on the team on-the-ground in Berlin by following us on Twitter. Expect lots of news from the accounts below, along with plenty of beer-and-sausage chatter.

Follow @CNET The best of everything at IFA
Follow @CNET_es The best of everything at IFA in Spanish
Follow @AshleeEats Ashlee Clark-Thompson, Senior Associate Editor
Follow @katiecollins Katie Collins, Reporter
Follow @Batteryhq Andrew Hoyle, Senior Editor
Follow @rycrist Ry Crist, Senior Associate Editor
Follow @benfoxfubin Ben Fox Rubin, Senior Reporter
Follow @jideakin85 Jide Akinrinade, Video Producer
Follow @calavErika Érika García, CNET en Español
Follow @tylerlizenby Tyler Lizenby, Multimedia Producer
Follow @sharatibken Shara Tibken, Senior Reporter
Follow @rh_brown Rich Brown, Executive Editor

Follow CNET’s full coverage of IFA 2018

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IFA 2018: Everything we’ve seen at Europe’s biggest tech show
Aug 31
JBL Charge 4 Bluetooth speaker gets some key upgrades
Aug 31
Windows 10 October 2018 Update is the name of Microsoft’s next OS rollout
Aug 31
Smartwatch makers try to get a jump on Apple with fitness push

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Razer Kraken Tournament Edition brings THX Spatial Audio surround tech – CNET

Razer bought THX a little under two years ago and the technology is finally making its way into the company’s products; first with its Nommo Chroma speakers, and now it’s bringing THX positional audio capability into its Kraken Tournament Edition headset.

Razer bought THX a little under two years ago and the technology is finally making its way into the company’s products; first with its Nommo Chroma speakers, and now it’s bringing THX positional audio capability into its Kraken Tournament Edition headset. Because there’s never a good time to be surprised from behind, especially when there’s money and fame on the line.

THX Spatial Surround tracks which way you’re facing in a game and adjusts the directional audio to match, among other things. The Kraken TE builds on the existing Kraken 7.1 V2 headset with the THX, which also lets you customize the audio balance between gaming and chat, as well as bass. And its inline USB audio control box is big enough to prevent fumbling when you’re in the zone. It ships standard with the cooling-gel cushions that are optional on the Kraken 7.1 V2.

It’s slated to ship in September for $100; that’s the same price as the Kraken 7.1 V2, so it will likely cost £100 and AU$170.

The BlackWidow Elite mechanical keyboard inherits wobble-reducing, crumb-resisting dual-wall mechanical switches (green, yellow or orange) from last year’s BlackWidow Ultimate, as well as Razer Hypershift (which lets you bind any key as a function shift so you can map Razer Synapse 3 macros to any key on the keyboard), the Digital Dial and media keys from its Huntsman optomechanical keyboard and onboard/cloud memory to store up to five profiles.

It’s available now for $170; that’s the same as the BlackWidow Chroma V2, so it likely costs £170 and AU$340.

Finally, Razer potentially confuses us with the Mamba Wireless — confusing, because its original Mamba was born wireless. The new model has vastly improved battery life — it’s now rated for 50 hours on a charge, up from 20. It also gets grippier side grips a la the Tournament Edition, the same hybrid onboard memory/cloud storage for profiles and the Adaptive Frequency Technology from the Lancehead to optimize connection stability.

You can buy it now for $100, which is likely £100 or AU$170.


40
IFA 2018: All the coolest tech we’ve seen so far

IFA 2018: The key announcements from summer’s biggest tech show

And check out our exhaustive coverage of the best wireless gaming headsets.

IFA 2018
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Aug 30
IFA 2018: Catch up on the cool new gadgets from Berlin’s big tech show
Aug 30
Netgear Orbi Voice: Harman Kardon speaker with Alexa and mesh Wi-Fi extender
Aug 30
Jabra’s Elite Active 65t earphones now come in an Amazon Edition and more color options

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Nanoleaf update: Touch-sensitive Canvas panels coming Dec. 1 – CNET

We’ve been eagerly awaiting the arrival of Nanoleaf’s new touch-sensitive, color-changing, square LED light panels ever since we first saw them in action last January at CES. Now, at the IFA tech showcase in Berlin, we’re getting some fresh details on how those Nanoleaf Canvas panels are coming along.

We’ve been eagerly awaiting the arrival of Nanoleaf’s new touch-sensitive, color-changing, square LED light panels ever since we first saw them in action last January at CES. Now, at the IFA tech showcase in Berlin, we’re getting some fresh details on how those Nanoleaf Canvas panels are coming along.

“We launch Dec. 1,” Nanoleaf CEO Gimmy Chu tells me, adding that the panels are still in the prototype phase, but close to being finalized.

Take a close look at them and you’ll notice that there’s still a cross on each panel splitting it into four sections in order to diffuse the light more evenly. At CES, Chu told us that the company was working to refine the design and get rid of those crosses, but he tells me now that they’re here to stay.

“We ran a poll, and the current design actually did really well with our users,” Chu said. “Some of them liked that it gave the panels sort of a marbled effect.”

Another change since January: The total number of panels you can connect to a single power source has fallen from 1,000 to 500.

“I think that’s still pretty good,” Chu said, smiling.

Other than those changes, the pitch remains the same. Like the triangular Nanoleaf panels that came before them, you’ll stick the Canvas panels up to your walls using removable sticky tabs, then plug them in and pair them with your home’s Wi-Fi network. From there, you’ll be able to paint colors across your setup in the Nanoleaf app, or choose from hundreds of Nanoleaf and user-created color-changing presets. You can also touch any of the panels to send waves of light rippling across your setup.

The panels will also work with Alexa and the Google Assistant, as well as with Siri thanks to Apple HomeKit support. Nanoleaf also boasts a channel on the free online automation service IFTTT, which lets you sync them up with other IFTTT-supported services and devices. On top of that, an integration with Razer Chroma lets you sync Nanoleaf’s panels with your color-changing PC gaming gear, and with your games, too.


40
IFA 2018: All the coolest tech we’ve seen so far

Unlike the triangular panels, previously known as Nanoleaf Aurora, Nanoleaf Canvas won’t feature a dedicated base with physical buttons for turning the panels on and off or cycling through your presets. Instead, one of the panels in each starter kit will include touch button icons along the bottom edge to replace those controls. There’s also a new shuffle button you can press if you simply want to see some new colors across your walls. Chiu tells me that feature is intended primarily as an option for users who put the panels up but leave them unconnected to Wi-Fi.

You’ll also find a new button that brings up your favorite preset, as well as a button that turns the built-in microphone on to sync your panels up with whatever music you’re listening to.

The Nanoleaf Canvas starter kit will come with 9 panels and the power supply when it arrives this December. No final word on pricing just yet, but as soon as I hear a number I’ll add it in here.

IFA 2018: The key announcements from summer’s biggest tech show

Bosch at IFA 2018: Smart kitchen utopia, or rejected Black Mirror episode?

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