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Japan tycoon Maezawa returns from space with business dreams – CTV News

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TOKYO –

“Space now,” was what Japanese billionaire Yusaku Maezawa wanted to tweet for years. He finally really did it, from the International Space Station.

“The space market holds so much potential,” he said Friday at the Foreign Correspondents’ Club in Tokyo, his first news conference in Japan after returning to earth before Christmas.

Maezawa, who heads a company called Start Today, is preparing to invest in various businesses which may develop from the ongoing research by NASA, the Japanese equivalent called JAXA and others. But he wants first to recover from his recent celestial adventure: returning to life with gravity has proved heavier than he’d expected, he said.

Maezawa, 46, blasted off in a Russian Soyuz spacecraft along with a Russian cosmonaut Dec. 8, becoming the first self-paying tourist to visit the station since 2009.

He returned to earth after spending 12 days at the orbiting outpost, where he took videos of himself clowning around in weightlessness, shaping water droplets into bubbles and punting a golf ball drifting toward a flag in the spacecraft.

The clips, taken by astronaut Yozo Hirano, who accompanied Maezawa, have been posted on YouTube, drawing millions of views.

He tweeted “uchyu nau,” or “space now,” in the style Japanese often use on the popular social media to relay what they’re up to, such as “partying now,” or “dinner now.”

“Here is what I really wanted say. My first tweet from space,” said the post following one with a photo of him wearing a T-shirt and shorts, floating cross-legged in a meditation pose.

He said he would like to tweet “moon now” next. He has booked an orbit around the moon aboard Tesla CEO Elon Musk’s Starship, scheduled in the next few years, possibly as early as next year.

“I don’t know when exactly I should tweet that,” he said, as he wouldn’t be landing on the moon. “Maybe when we get to the back side of the moon.”

Maezawa has more than 11 million Twitter followers and has emerged as a flamboyant celebrity known for a free-wheeling managerial style that’s rare in Japan’s conformist, staid business world.

He ran an import CD business and played in a rock band before starting an online fashion business in 1998. Famous for dating movie stars, Maezawa has been both admired and ridiculed for his lavish purchases, including a Stradivarius violin and artworks by Jean-Michel Basquiat and Andy Warhol.

In 2019, Maezawa resigned as CEO of e-commerce company Zozo Inc. to devote his time to space travel, selling his business to Yahoo Japan. Forbes magazine estimates his wealth at $1.9 billion.

How much Maezawa paid for his voyage has been the topic of much speculation and skepticism. Reports put the price tag at more than $80 million. Maezawa declined again to disclose the cost.

But he said living in space has him appreciating the everyday more: the wind, the changing seasons, smells and sushi.

Maezawa hopes that one day the world’s leaders could make that same trip. Planet Earth is “100 times more beautiful” than any photo he had ever seen, he said, and so maybe they would also realize the importance of working together.

“That is my dream,” he said.

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Vergecast: Microsoft to acquire Activision, Google building a headset, and the 5G battle with airlines – The Verge

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Every Friday, The Verge publishes our flagship podcast, The Vergecast, where we discuss the week in tech news with the reporters and editors covering the biggest stories.

The biggest news in tech this week was Microsoft acquiring game publisher Activision Blizzard for $68.7 billion. On today’s Vergecast, Verge editor-in-chief Nilay Patel talks with games reporter Ash Parrish and senior reporter Alex Heath about the acquisition, the issues behind the culture at Activision Blizzard, and what this means for the gaming space in the future.

The crew also discusses Alex’s scoop this week that Google is building an AR headset, internally codenamed Project Iris, that it hopes to ship in 2024.

Later in the show, Verge policy editor Russell Brandom joins to discuss the ongoing battle between the FAA, AT&T, Verizon, and airlines over activating 5G towers around airports, as well as the tech antitrust bills developing in Congress this week.

You can listen to the show here or in your preferred podcast player for the full discussion.

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Photos of Samsung Galaxy A53 5G's components confirm four rear cameras, one selfie – GSMArena.com news – GSMArena.com

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The Samsung Galaxy A53 5G will reuse the bump design of the A52 trio for the quad camera on its back. This was seen in speculative renders from last year, but now we have real-world confirmation as well from spy photos of A53 5G’s frame and rear panel that were shared by 91Mobilies.

The panel appears black, though this could be prior to painting. Either way, black is one of the rumored color options for this model, alongside white, light blue and orange. This same color palette will be used for other Ax3 phones as well, including the Galaxy A13 and A33 5G.


Samsung Galaxy A53 5G rear panel and mid-frame
Samsung Galaxy A53 5G rear panel and mid-frame
Samsung Galaxy A53 5G rear panel and mid-frame

Samsung Galaxy A53 5G rear panel and mid-frame

As for the cameras, it will indeed have four modules, despite TENAA listing only three. The main camera is expected to have the same 64 MP resolution as the A52 models, but the ultra wide may be getting an upgrade to 32 MP (up from 12 MP).

We wouldn’t put too much stock in the TENAA specs, though, they also listed two selfie cameras, and we haven’t seen any evidence of that, not even in TENAA’s own photos of the phone. And if you look at the photo of the phone’s mid-frame, there is only one centered punch hole for a selfie camera.

Samsung Galaxy A53 5G (speculative renders)
Samsung Galaxy A53 5G (speculative renders)
Samsung Galaxy A53 5G (speculative renders)

Samsung Galaxy A53 5G speculative renders (image credit)

The Samsung Galaxy A53 5G will use two different chipsets, one of which is expected to be the Exynos 1200. Note that there isn’t going to be an A53 4G, the two different chips will both power 5G units. Other than that, they should share the same hardware.

The A53 is expected to be announced in the first quarter of this year, likely alongside other Ax3 models.

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Xbox boss wants to revive old Activision Blizzard games – Rock Paper Shotgun

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Of the many possibilities that Microsoft buying Activision Blizzard might enable, only one seems really clear: that Microsoft will put Actiblizz games on Game Pass. Beyond that, it’s all mights and maybes. Here’s another maybe: Microsoft Gaming CEO Phil Spencer says they’re hoping to dig into Actiblizz’s “franchises that I love from my childhood,” raising the likes of Hexen and King’s Quest. What better use for $69 billion than wallowing in nostalgia?

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