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Microsoft Launches ‘Halo Infinite’ Multiplayer Three Weeks Early For Xbox Anniversary – Forbes

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Well, I spent all weekend investigating this, and by the end, there was just too much data and too many whispers to ignore. All the rumors were true, Microsoft did decide to launch the multiplayer component of Halo Infinite today, Monday, November 15, to celebrate the 20th Anniversary of Xbox and the series itself.

There were a wide, wide variety of leaks in the run-up to this, some from insiders, others datamining store information that pointed to an 11-15 date. There were a few last-minute rumors that some technical issues had nixed these plans, but I heard it was resolved in time for this launch to happen. Now we will see what happens when millions of people race to download Halo Infinite and log on at the same moment, and if Microsoft is ready for that kind of flood.

The only rumor that didn’t pan out was rumblings of a playable campaign demo launching at the same time, but multiplayer is certainly enough to make this a blockbuster surprise launch, as even with all the evidence, many people refused to believe Microsoft would actually do something this crazy with Halo Infinite.

But done it they have. The multiplayer component that launches today is not a preview, it is the actual start of season 1, Heroes of Reach, and all progress carries through the “real” launch of the game (now just the campaign) on December 8. I have not finished downloading it to see if any restrictions are in place for modes, but they didn’t mention any in the reveal.

I am curious to see the potential side effects of a move this major and surprising. When this was still just a rumor, I wondered how it might affect Forza Horizon 5, a Game Pass title currently putting up massive numbers, as Halo may pull a lot of players off that after just a week. And in third party land, EA has to be tearing their hair out that Microsoft dropped Halo Infinite right on top of Battlefield 2042 launch week, but I have a feeling this was planned a long time ago by Microsoft, and Battlefield hadn’t been delayed to this week yet. But you can’t exactly move an anniversary date, now can you?

At this point, it’s well-established through technical flights that Halo Infinite’s multiplayer combat is excellent. The biggest challenge today could be on the technical side, as the game now has to handle a crush of players all trying to get in. Hopefully that aspect goes smoothly.

This was extremely cool to bother investigate and to see the reveal, because even until the last minute, I couldn’t guarantee it would still happen. See you out there, Spartans.

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Pick up my sci-fi novels the Herokiller series and its audiobook, and The Earthborn Trilogy, also on audiobook.

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Apple iPhone SE 3 on track for March 2022, claims report – Pocket-lint.com

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(Pocket-lint) – The much-rumoured 3rd-gen iPhone SE will reportedly release in the first quarter of 2022 – most likely March.

That’s the opinion of TrendForce, a market research firm in Taiwan, which believes that Apple is keen to get a firmer grip on the “mid-range 5G smartphone” market.

“Apple is staying with the plan to release its 3rd-generation iPhone SE in 1Q22 and four models under a new series in 2H22,” it wrote in its latest report on smartphone production growth.

“The 3rd-generation iPhone SE is expected to be a major instrument in helping Apple establish a presence in the market segment for mid-range 5G smartphones.”

The last iPhone SE was released in April 2020 and is still available today. However, it is now somewhat an oddity in Apple’s line-up, being the only device with older design and a front-facing Touch ID button.

That might not change, as a rumour in October suggested the button could remain. The 4.7-inch Retina HD display was also said to be returning, although a beefier A15 Bionic chip could power the new device.

Another big change will be the addition of 5G, which will make it more attractive as networks rollout 5G coverage more widely. We’ll undoubtedly find out more as spring approaches.



Writing by Rik Henderson. Originally published on 1 December 2021.

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Xiaomi 12 series is also "coming soon" with Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 SoC – GSMArena.com news – GSMArena.com

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The Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 chip introduced at Qualcomm’s ongoing Snapdragon Tech Summit will power several flagship Android devices next year. Realme has already confirmed that its GT 2 Pro will have the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 chip at the helm, and now Xiaomi’s Founder and CEO, Mr. Lei Jun, has also confirmed the use of Qualcomm’s freshly announced flagship chip on the Xiaomi 12.

Mr. Jun didn’t divulge anything about the Xiaomi 12 but said that the Xiaomi 12 series “will be the world’s first smartphones” to have the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 SoC under the hood.

The CEO didn’t reveal the Xiaomi 12 series’ launch date either, but rumor has it that the smartphone will debut on December 12. And while we are yet to get any confirmation on that, the company’s official Twitter handle posted a short video clip, saying the Xiaomi 12’s mass production has kicked off and it’s “coming soon.”

While Mr. Jun says that the Xiaomi 12 series will be the world’s first to be powered by the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 chip, that may not be the case since Motorola has announced a December 9 event to unveil the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1-powered Edge X30, unless Xiaomi is already geared up to introduce the Xiaomi 12 before next Thursday.

OnePlus, Oppo, and iQOO have also confirmed to launch Snapdragon 8 Gen 1-powered smartphones without getting into the details. nubia said it will use the new flagship chip on its Z series, while ZTE announced it will launch an Axon series smartphone with the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 next year.

You can read our Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 announcement coverage here to learn more about it.

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Realme GT 2 Pro will be among the first smartphones to use the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 – GSMArena.com news – GSMArena.com

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Now that Qualcomm has finally made its next-generation flagship chipset official at its event in Hawaii, Realme has something to say too – and that is that the GT 2 Pro will be powered by the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1.

It’s hard to imagine a less surprising announcement, but there you have it – it’s official now. Don’t forget, the upcoming GT 2 Pro is going to be Realme’s “first-ever ultra-premium flagship”, rising above the likes of the X50 Pro and previous members in the GT family.

Realme proudly boasts that it will be among the first manufacturers to launch a smartphone with the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 mobile platform, an that phone will be the GT 2 Pro. Development of the device has started a few months ago, and this will end up being a “truly high-end flagship product that will exceed the expectations of young users around the world”, according to Realme VP Chase Xu.

The Realme GT 2 Pro with the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 at the helm was in fact already spotted at AnTuTu scoring over a million points a few days ago. The phone is expected to have 125W wired charging support, up to 12GB of LPDDR5 RAM, up to 512GB of UFS 3.1 storage, a 6.51″ 120 Hz AMOLED screen, a 32 MP selfie camera, and a 50 MP main rear sensor with OIS.

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