iPhone X Tesla Has A Built-In Solar Panel, But You'll Need $4500 To Buy It - Canadanewsmedia
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iPhone X Tesla Has A Built-In Solar Panel, But You'll Need $4500 To Buy It

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Russian accessory maker Caviar has started selling the iPhone X Tesla with a $4,500 price tag. The product is basically the Apple handset equipped with a high-end case that provides solar charging.  ( Caviar )

Mobile wireless charging is so last year. Solar charging is the future — at least, that’s what Caviar thinks.

A high-end accessory producer from Russia, the company is launching what it calls the iPhone X Tesla, which is its first smartphone that has an integrated solar panel on the rear.

A Case Bundled With iPhone X

Spotted first by AppleInsider, Caviar isn’t just selling a case, but the iPhone X along with the Tesla. With that under consideration, the thickness of the device measures to 0.63 inches, instead of the original 0.3 inches. Thanks to that, there’s enough space to keep the handset’s rear camera bump in a recess. By the same token, it weighs at 0.57 pounds, up from 0.37 pounds.

As for the solar panel, it’s connected to a battery that can send juice to the iPhone X’s battery at a tap of a button, and it’s shock resistant to boot. Made out of carbon fiber, the case itself is touted to have an IP67 dust and water resistance.

Tesla

While it’s called “Tesla,” it doesn’t have any connection with Tesla. It was named to honor the company’s cofounder Elon Musk, though.

“The development in the sphere of creating solar batteries, smart homes, equipped with such batteries and vehicles working on the electricity, is actively carried out by Elon Musk today — the main mastermind of the Tesla Company; in honor of his great innovative developments, the new Caviar phone was named,” the product page description reads.

Caviar was inspired by the “three men of science,” one of which is Musk. The other two are Nikola Tesla and Apple cofounder Steve Jobs.

Now the Tesla isn’t called a luxury accessory for nothing. The 64 GB model of the iPhone X Tesla is priced at 284,000 rubles (roughly $4,550), while the 256 GB variant is at 299,000 rubles (roughly $4,800). Those haven’t taken local taxes and custom duties into account either.

Despite the price, Caviar is selling more of its product than first planned. Originally, it was going to make only 99 units, but the amount of preorders it has received shot the numbers up to 999, according to AppleInsider. The accessory maker is also said to give the first unit it manufactured to Musk.

It’s also worth mentioning that Caviar is the brain behind the Samsung Supremo Putin Rubino.

With all said and done, what do you think of this avant-garde accessory maker of sorts? Feel free to hit us up in the comments section below and let us know.

See Now: Things You Should Never Search For On Google — You’ve Been Warned

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Apple will add government App Store takedown requests to transparency reports

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Apple’s set to up the ante with its transparency report. The same day it dropped the latest version of the twice-yearly document, the company committed to including in future updates government takedown requests for the App Store. The report covering July 1 through December 31 of this year, which is due out in 2019, should be the first to detail that information.

The information should prove a valuable insight into both Apple’s activities and the asks of governments around the world. Future reports will detail the specific government that issued the request, along with whether or not the company ultimately complied.

No word yet on whether the company will detail the specific apps. That would certainly prove even more informative, as far as the motivation behind said request. In the Government and Private Party Requests portion of this most recent document, Apple briefly notes that it, “will report on Government requests to take down Apps from the App Store in instances related to alleged violations of legal and/or policy provisions.”

For this report, the company notes broader government requests, saying it received in excess of 16,000 national security requests, marking a 20 percent increase during the same time frame a year prior. As Reuters notes, the company is hardly alone on this one — both Facebook and Google have been hit with a substantial increase in requests.

As governments around the world take increasing interest in the tech world, that number seems likely to increase further.

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Bell's online streaming service CraveTV to raise prices to pay for better content

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Bell Media’s online streaming service CraveTV is raising prices as it beefs up its content library to compete with Netflix Inc., the disruptive giant whose stock price rose enough this week to surpass Walt Disney Co. as the world’s most valuable media company.

The BCE Inc.-owned subscription video service informed subscribers it will raise its monthly price by $2 to $9.99 plus taxes as of June 25. It will also raise rates for its three, six and 12-month plans by $6, $10 and $18, respectively, although consumers can lock in current prices for a year if they prepay for a lengthier plan before the changes come into effect.

“The price change for CraveTV reflects the continued cost increases we’re facing to acquire the highest-quality programming,” Bell Media spokesman Scott Henderson said Friday.

“But it’s programming like HBO, Showtime, Starz and other premium content that makes CraveTV the best value of any streaming service available in Canada.”

CraveTV had about 1.3 million subscribers and the end of 2017, according to Bell’s financial statements. The price increase could add up to $30 million to Bell’s coffers if each customer paid an extra $24 annually (longer-term customers will obviously pay less, but Bell does not provide a breakdown of subscriptions).

The new rate – it comes to $11.29 per month in Ontario with a 13 per cent sales tax – brings CraveTV closer in line with Netflix’s pricing. The Los Gatos, Cali. company raised its standard plan to $10.99 per month last summer, boosting revenues and fuelling its plan to spend US$8 billion on content in 2018 alone.

It’s not easy to compete with Netflix’s deep pockets. In 2016, Rogers Communications Inc. and Shaw Communications Inc. closed the curtain on their streaming service Shomi after less than two years of operations in part due to a content library that couldn’t attract as many consumers as Netflix’s vastly larger catalogue.

Since then, more streaming services including Amazon Prime Video, DAZN (a live sports platform pronounced “da zone”) and CBS All Access have flooded the market to entice cord cutters, people that forgo expensive cable packages to purchase cheaper online subscriptions.

Critically for Bell, HBO has not launched a streaming service in Canada, meaning CraveTV is the only place people without cable packages can legally watch its blockbuster shows, such as Game of Thrones. (Bell bought the rights to distribute HBO content until past 2020, although the terms of the deal aren’t public.)

Still, broadcasters and television providers need to figure out how to make up for declines in subscription and advertising revenue as TV customers decamp for the internet.

Regulators are also grappling with a future in which most content is viewed on the internet. The government ordered the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission to produce a report on future audio and video distribution models by the end of next week. One big hurdle is what to do about Netflix, which has amassed an estimated six million Canadian subscribers.

In a note to clients, National Bank of Canada analyst Adam Shine said CraveTV’s price increases are immaterial to BCE’s overall results but will help Bell Media produce “more flattish” adjusted earnings in 2018 and 2019.

“The news is… relevant for Bell Media where tuck-in M&A and subscription revenue growth serve to help mitigate secular pressures in advertising, which are exacerbated by rising content costs, especially for sports programming and CraveTV,” Shine wrote.

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School Shooting Game Angers Steam Users, Developer 'Likely' Changing It

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Earlier this week, a game called Active Shooter appeared on Steam. It’d be nothing more than another heap of hacked-together pre-purchased assets—or an “asset flip,” as they’re known on Steam—if not for its subject matter. It’s about mass shootings.

The unreleased game’s Steam store page describes it as a “dynamic S.W.A.T. simulator” in which you play as a shooter, a S.W.A.T. team member trying to neutralize them, or a civilian. Its trailer depicts a player running down school halls and through classrooms, indiscriminately murdering teachers until a S.W.A.T. team shows up.

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Complaints about the game have been fierce, and yesterday the person behind the game said they’ll probably remove the option to play as the mass shooter.

Almost as soon as the game’s store listing went up, Steam users took to the game’s forums to voice their distaste.

“I love offensive humor as much as the next guy, but you’re dense as hell if you can’t see why a pay-to-play school shooting simulation game might be taking it a step too far,” said one user.

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“REPORT THIS GAME,” said another, more succinctly.

The game’s Steam forums are dominated by threads calling for the developer to reconsider and for Valve to do something about the game, as well as people criticizing Valve for the fact that it gives the boot to many games containing nudity while letting the likes of Active Shooter fester on digital shelves.

Anti-gun violence charity Infer Trust has called for Valve to remove Active Shooter from Steam altogether. “It is horrendous,” a spokeswoman told the BBC. “Why would anybody think it’s a good idea to market something violent like that, and be completely insensitive to the deaths of so many children?”

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This isn’t the first time Steam has been criticized for school shooting-related content. Before a quiet crackdown from Valve that took place earlier this year, Steam reportedly played host to hundreds of user-made groups that glorified school shooters. Kotaku reached out to Valve about Active Shooter yesterday, but has yet to hear back.

In response to all of this, Active Shooter’s developer released a statement. “First of all, this game does not promote any sort of violence, especially any sort of a mass shooting,” they wrote in a post on Steam, noting that the game was originally just going to be about S.W.A.T. teams, but then they decided to make shooters and civilians playable as well.

“While I can see people’s anger and why this might be a bad idea for the game, I still feel like this topic should be left alone,” they continued. “As I mentioned in Steam discussion forums, there are games like Hatred, Postal, Carmageddon and etc, which are even worst [sic] compared to Active Shooter and literally focus on mass shootings/killings of people.”

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They added that they will “more likely” revert the shooter character to being unplayable before the game’s June 6 release date, pending a response from Valve.

You’re reading Steamed, Kotaku’s page dedicated to all things in and around Valve’s wildly popular PC gaming service.

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