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Google Pixel 7 series are the first Android phones to support 64-bit apps

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Google’s recently launched Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro are the first smartphones that support 64-bit apps. This is a huge deal, considering that modern mobile SoCs are developed on 64-bit architecture, and will therefore run these apps more efficiently, at least in theory. However, the downside is that devices like the Pixel 7 and the Pixel 7 Pro, which support 64-bit apps, are not able to work with 32-bit versions of these apps.

Google wants other device manufacturers to follow their cue and move to 64-bit-only architecture for better security and performance. Image Credit: Google

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For years now, Google has been working towards a future where Android would become a 64-bit operating system instead of one that still supports 32-bit software. A 64-bit operating system can access many more memory addresses, which leads to improvements on both security, but more importantly performance. As mentioned earlier, it also drastically improves efficiency.

Android started supporting 64-bit apps in 2011, when they launched Android 5. However, Google never mandated app developers to submit a 64-bit version of their apps back then. In 2019, however, Google made it a requirement for app developers to submit a 64-bit version of their apps.

Even though the Pixel 7 series only supports 64-bit apps, the devices are not running on a 64-bit only version of Android. Instead, they’re only blocking the installation of 32-bit apps and show a message that reads “app not installed as app isn’t compatible with your phone” appearing when a user attempts to install a 32-bit app.

Now, Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro users, and any user who gets a device that supports only 64-bit apps, will not be facing any major challenges. What will happen, is that certain legacy apps, which have not been updated for a long time, and apps that have no 64-bit versions of their apps, will not work on these devices. Do note, that the number of such apps is very limited, and were anyway some form of emulators.

Google hopes that other manufacturers and app developers take the cue and slowly start porting their developing efforts to 64-bit versions only, as Google hopes to make the Android OS a 64-bit OS only at some point in time.

This claim is further supported by the fact that the upcoming Pixel Tablet will be the first Android device that is truly a 64-bit-only device. With Android 14, several other devices are expected to switch over to the 64-bit-only architecture.

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LastPass Suffers Second Major Data Breach in Four Months | – Spiceworks News and Insights

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On Wednesday, LastPass confirmed it was breached, a fallout of the August 2022 incident wherein portions of source code and some proprietary LastPass technical information were compromised. The recent breach came to light after the company noticed unusual activity in a third-party cloud storage service it shares with GoTo, its parent company.

In a blog post, LastPass CEO Karim Toubba said the still unknown threat actors accessed “certain elements” of the password manager’s customer information. Toubba didn’t talk about the type of information that was compromised but assured that the passwords of more than 33 million company users and more than 100,000 business accounts remain unaffected.

The August 2022 breach, wherein the hackers had access to LastPass accounts for four days, compromised the source code and some proprietary technical information. What the threat actors obtained in the previously compromised data to breach LastPass again is unknown.

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“Since the company claims that the current hack is based on data compromised in the previous hack, this raises the question: Why did they not learn from the earlier hack and correct the root cause?” Mike Walters, VP of vulnerability and threat research at Action1, told Spiceworks. “The trend of repeated hacks, where the company fails to eliminate the consequences of the breach for months, is frustrating.”

In both LastPass breaches this year, the threat actors failed to access customer passwords thanks to the Zero Knowledge security model it has implemented that no one except the customer has access to the password or any other data stored in the company’s digital vault.

The password manager solutions vendor is working with Mandiant to ascertain the precise reason behind the hack. “We are working diligently to understand the scope of the incident and identify what specific information has been accessed,” Toubba said. LastPass’s previous August 2022 breach came through a compromised developer account that had access to the company’s developer environment.

Walters added, “To avoid this mistake, you should take decisive steps to investigate the security incident, as well as to find and fix any and all security vulnerabilities. Namely, carefully examine the investigation report and conduct an in-depth analysis of all architectural issues. Implement robust network segmentation and complete visibility into network traffic and user behavior. Ensure you receive alerts about any abnormal events.”

“Also, validate that your IDS/IPS, Endpoint Protection, EDR, NGFW, Sandbox, Honeypot, and RMM systems are in place and fine-tuned according to your business needs.  Finally, you need to have a SOC center for incident response.”

Let us know if you enjoyed reading this news on LinkedIn, Twitter, or Facebook. We would love to hear from you!

Image source: Shutterstock

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‘The Callisto Protocol’ Reviews Are In, And They Are Concerning – Forbes

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We have reached the last few high profile releases of the year, and The Callisto Protocol was a game that many were looking forward to, a survival horror outing that seemed like it would be a spiritual successor to Dead Space.

But now that reviews are coming in, it seems to be falling short of that series, and while reviews are…okay, a few major critics and outlets have given it unusually low scores. The Callisto Protocol is currently sitting at a 76 Metascore, a ways off from the 86 of Dead Space, the 90 of Dead Space 2, and closer to the 78 of Dead Space 3, which was viewed as a series low point, before Visceral was eventually dismantled.

My friend Skillup, whose tastes I trust pretty explicitly at this point, positively roasted the game in his review:

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Elsewhere, we’re seeing a number of high profile outlets in gaming give The Callisto Protocol some of its lowest scores:

IGN – 7/10 – “The Callisto Protocol is a satisfyingly gory spiritual successor to the Dead Space series, but it’s ultimately more of a striking modern mimic than a scary new mutation.”

Game Informer – 6/10 – “These various problems aside, though, The Callisto Protocol is still doing a lot of what Dead Space did, for better and worse. And to that end, there are moments of fun, even if, in contrast, they’re light on genuine terror. I’m okay with The Callisto Protocol being another version of its spiritual predecessor, but it struggles to nail even the basics. As a result, I’m underwhelmed, annoyed, and disappointed. If you wanted anything more out of this second crack at making a new sci-fi IP in survival horror, or something markedly different that acknowledges just how far gaming has come since 2008, The Callisto Protocol is not your answer.”

VGC – 6/10 – “The Callisto Protocol delivers the violence, intensity and horror that lives up to its Dead Space predecessor, but with deeper strategic combat. However, a cliché story and lack of original ideas means that it has one tentacle stuck in the past.”

That isn’t to say there isn’t any praise. Here’s a somewhat shocking perfect 10/10 score from Dextero:

“A wonderfully exhausting exercise in futility is probably the best way of describing The Callisto Protocol as no matter the strength of my own resolve, I was constantly on edge and reveling in those fleeting moments where the game allowed me to breathe following yet another life-threatening fight. The constant fear and dread incited by the phenomenal visual and sound design are only complemented by the compelling story. The Callisto Protocol is, hopefully, the start of an exciting new franchise, and is another sign that survival horror is anything but dead.”

The Callisto Protocol is being released about two months ahead of the Dead Space remake from EA, but so far, it does seem like you may be better sticking off with the original than the “spiritual successor” here. It may find its fans, but this is not shaping up to be a last minute industry megahit, if most of these reviews are to be believed. We’ll see what fans make of it as it heads to the wild.

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Pick up my sci-fi novels the Herokiller series and The Earthborn Trilogy.

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Pokémon Scarlet And Violet Patch Divides Players Over Whether Anything's Fixed – Kotaku

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GameXplain

Others are reporting greater render distances, improved shadows, fading light changes, and fade-in rather than pop-in for NPCs.

However, Nintendúo World’s side-by-side framerate test seems to show each version out-performing the other in different places. Although I’d argue there’s definitely some improvement when entering towns in 1.1.0:

Nintendúo World

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One more for luck? This side-by-side comparison by Reyvanlatino (which unfortunately plays the music from both simultaneously, but just out of time) makes them look absolutely identical to me:

Reyvanlatino

So yeah, it’s pretty difficult to know exactly what’s happening here, and why different people are recording such different experiences.

Read More: Pokémon Scarlet And Violet: The Kotaku Review

In my own very unscientific comparison, I played the same area on my son’s original Switch with the 1.1.0 patch and on my OLED without the patch, and to my eyes the patched version seemed noticeably smoother. But, my eyes are notorious idiots, and either way, it was far from a revelatory experience.

It’s so hard to know what’s your imagination versus what’s a genuine improvement, but Pokémon still popped in, and it was still freezing up for half a second at random points. (Still, at least I caught a bunch of the Violet paradox monsters to trade to myself later.) If things are improved, they’re absolutely definitely not improved enough.

We asked Nintendo yesterday if they could be more specific about what had been patched, and didn’t even receive a response. So we’ve asked again today, not least because it seems like they could have something to boast about here. We’ll obviously update should they find time to reply. Although perhaps they’re relying on people’s hopeful imaginations to fill in where they did not?

Meanwhile, come on Digital Foundry, pull your fingers out and give us the definitive answers.

 

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