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Nintendo Switch Online Need to Know

Nintendo Switch Online is well, now online…more than a year after the console launched!  This marks the very first time Nintendo has charged for online play.  Nintendo fans had it pretty good until now.

The service goes operational at 11pm EST on 9/18/18 in the US. You can access the service for a full seven days before your free trial ends.

There are a few payment packages, starting at $3.99 per month, or $19.99 for a year. Compared to competing services such as Xbox Live at $40 a year or PlayStation Plus at $60 a year, Nintendo Switch Online looks like a bargain. But not everyone with a Switch is going to sign up for the service, and if your friends don’t maybe you should think twice.

Nintendo Switch Online will let you take part in online matchmaking for games like Splatoon 2, Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, Super Smash Bros Ultimate, or the many other games that just aren’t complete until you’ve played with others, whether in your living room, or online.

Signing up is also the way to get HD remasters of older classics. Nintendo Switch Online members will get 20 NES games at launch, with three additional games coming on a monthly basis, with upgraded graphics and some limited online / two-player functionality. You’ll be able to use these games for some time without internet before your Switch requires you to phone home online and make sure you’re still a paying customer.  This could give those with tight budgets the time to get funds together to keep their games and enjoy them without risk, such as children with an allowance that doesn’t fall on the billing date or adults with unpredictable incomes like restaurant workers or uber drivers.

Of important note is that Fortnite is unaffected by this and will not require Nintendo Switch Online.

Works Cited

Leger, H. S. (2018, September 18). Nintendo Switch Online arrives on your console today: Here’s what you need to do. Retrieved September 18, 2018, from https://www.techradar.com/news/nintendo-switch-online-arrives-on-your-console-today-heres-what-you-need-to-do

 

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30 day thoughts on assurance wireless

Nobody wants to have their cellphone shutoff because they have an income problem, but fortunately the government realizes that in order for people to get back to work, they need a phone for employers to call.  Some internet to do those online applications wouldn’t hurt, and a way to text government services like the bus system or crisis lines is also helpful.

So, the FCC funds through the Universal Service Fund a program called, “The Lifeline Program.”  These phones are simply that, a lifeline, not a luxury device.  In my stated, it’s called Assurance Wireless, and other states use Safelink.  They do offer flip phones, but are phasing them out in favor of smartphones because they are multipurpose and can be used to get access to other government needs based programs.

Here’s a few takeaways after we put one to the test for a month.

  • With the data saver feature on the android based ANS UL 40, 1GB should last you most, if not all of the month.
  • $5 per extra gig is a good deal, and can be paid for with cash via Virgin Mobile Top Up Cards, or even paypal.
  • The credit and debit card payment system however was very unsatisfactory and charged a few times.
  • Customer service will give you extra data if you complain and are nice.  So be nice.
  • The network is 4g, but it is Sprint, so the coverage could be better.
  • You can use your data on the device itself, or tether.  We recommend you tether to something beefier, and keep a powerbank handy.
  • The display is tiny and the phone chews through it’s battery in 2 to 3 hours.  So keep a power bank handy.
  • The processor and ram make it sluggish and under powered.  1gb of ram is not enough.
  • You can sign up for the program by fax, email, or at a outreach booth.  I preferred email.
  • You should be grateful this exists, and use it often as this is a use it or lose it benefit program.
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Apple and Google Pay coming to 7 Eleven Very Soon

7 Eleven has never been known for being technologically advanced, except when it comes to cold beverages and security systems. Still,  the convenience store chain has been notably slow on the uptake of mobile payment technology compared to other similar outlets.

The company said that it is bringing Apple Pay and Google Pay to “most” of its U.S. stores. Samsung beat its two major competitors to the store likely the two companies reached some sort of agreement behind closed doors.

Apple CEO Tim Cook announced earlier this summer that support at 7-Eleven stores was coming, along with the CVS pharmacies. The addition of the payment options should help make this manner of mobile payment popular among many users. The company has more than 66,000 stores worldwide. The U.S. currently makes up about 14 percent of that market.

Works Cited

Heater, B. (2018, September 10). Apple and Google Pay are finally coming to 7-Eleven this month. Retrieved September 11, 2018, from https://techcrunch.com/2018/09/10/apple-and-google-pay-are-finally-coming-to-7-11-this-month/
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Windows 7 Security Updates Extended

Microsoft had promised Windows 7 extended support through January 2020. After that ended, there would be no more security updates. Microsoft has noted that despite the end of service being a few years away, some big clients might be on a longer trajectory for being able to migrate to Windows 10. As better serve them, Microsoft has decided that it will continue offering Windows 7 Extended Security Updates through January 2023, giving users three more time to upgrade to Windows 10.

The caveat is that the updates past January 2020 will be sold to users on a single device basis. The price to buy those updates will also go up each year. Extended Service Updates will be offered to Windows 7 Pro and Windows 7 Enterprise customers in Volume Licensing. That means some Home version users won’t be able to get the updates.

Works Cited

McGlaun, S. (2018, September 09). Clinging To Windows 7? Microsoft Will Eventually Charge For Security Updates. Retrieved September 9, 2018, from https://hothardware.com/news/windows-7-security-updates-extended

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Huawei lets all users access performance mode

Huawei got caught cheating on benchmark tests, and now it’s trying to do right by consumers. Huawei announced that users can force their phone into “performance mode.” This optimizes their device to run faster, but will also eat up the battery.  Users will get this with EMUI 9.0, a new version of Huawei’s Operating System.

The fact that Huawei is opening up its performance shows it’s clearly just trying to cater to users who care about benchmark tests and want access to the best performance. It could be useful for gamers who want to enable it before playing Still, it make the cheating from Huawei’s any better. The creators of 3DMark says they’ll reinstate Huawei’s benchmark scores once it opens performance mode up to all its phones.

Works Cited

Carman, A. (2018, September 07). Huawei will let all phone users access ‘performance mode’ after benchmark controversy. Retrieved September 8, 2018, from https://www.theverge.com/platform/amp/circuitbreaker/2018/9/7/17832940/huawei-phone-performance-mode-camera-3dmark

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Why California’s Net Neutrality Bill doesn’t matter

California is attempting to force major internet companies to treat all internet traffic as equal…like they already do.  I don’t really see the point of just one state passing legislation that is used to affect a global network.   It’s Comcast’s right to charge more for a network the shareholders funded to have built.  This nation was founded on freedom of speech and personal property rights.  So if Comcast owns it’s cable network, Comcast should not be forced to do anything with it that it doesn’t want to do. 

If Comcast decides to send TCP resets to BitTorrent users in an attempt to discourage them from pirating content, they have the right to do that.  And in the mid 2000’s, Comcast did just that.  It’s called traffic shaping and sometimes it’s needed for the greater good of the rest of the network.  If a security camera fails because a local router was overloaded from illegal torrents, maybe Comcast shouldn’t be neutral to that.

With the internet of things, meaning the fact that one day even your toilet will have an ip address, networks will be under heavier loads than ever before.  Everyone needs to be promised a minimum quality of service if they pay for a service.  The internet connections we use everyday are a limited resource, and limited resources are subject to the laws of supply and demand.  Therefore, the internet, while it generally treats your Instagram the same way it treats this site’s traffic, cannot be equal.

Don’t worry about fast or slow lanes, because the big firms like Facebook and Google already have made their own fast lanes to serve you.  Google’s fiber network was built at great expense to enable it to capture market share.  Facebook builds massive data-centers to serve up cat videos and recipes, and if you think that they don’t have a different arrangement with the ISP’s, then maybe reading more is the answer.

Bendy Computers is here to educate, but you the consumer must choose to seek out this knowledge every day.  We’ll take anyone’s money as long as it’s a valid card for payment, but we want our customers to be so well versed in their purchases that they don’t need us.  Quality instruction is part of service, and you can’t get instruction from college educated professionals at most stores.

Works Cited

Peterson, T., Patel, S., Weiss, M., Willens, M., A., Davies, J., & Sahil Patel. (2018, September 04). WTF is California’s net neutrality bill? Retrieved September 5, 2018, from https://digiday.com/media/wtf-californias-net-neutrality-bill/
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Apple watch buyers prefer older models

Usually when people buy a smart watch, it is assumed the buyer is buying one because they have money to burn.  But sales figures prove otherwise.  Out of all the Apple Watches, if users do buy a non-cellular model, it’s the series one models.  Most likely because apple users already spent at least $800 on a flagship phone, so they don’t have much left over for a device that honestly has little practical use.

This proves that despite a strong economy, consumers are not as spendthrift as before 2001.  People have put their phones on installment, break them, and then rollover the balances, creating a massive unsecured personal debt with their phone carrier, all just to keep up with the Jones’s.

All of this is bad news for laptop and especially desktop makers. Due to thin budgets, only businesses or power users buy desktops, and most choose large firms.  This is exactly why we decided to diversify into support, software, and video production.  Major repair shops charge far more for far less in workmanship, education, and experience.  We owe it to the public to keep ourselves solvent and adapt to market changes.

We’ll have a wait list for service again, and older clients or ones who are willing to pay more obviously will be prioritized.

I used to have to turn down repairs simply due to time issues, but now combined with my trusted agents, we’re back at it because I have a God given talent, and I can’t spoil God’s gifts.  For now, enjoy our articles until you need us, and remember that we negotiate, offer coupons, and we don’t leave jobs half done or half baked.

Works Cited

Siegal, J. (2018, September 02). Vast majority of Apple Watch buyers are opting for old models. Retrieved September 2, 2018, from https://bgr.com/2018/09/02/apple-watch-best-selling-smartwatch-series-1/
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ios 12 bug report

On Thursday, social media posts from iOS 12 beta testers, both developers and members of Apple’s public beta program, detail quite a bug in the latest evaluation version.

Testers running Apple’s latest iOS 12 beta are encountering a peculiar issue that causes a software update prompt to repeatedly appear on screen, forcing users to manually dismiss the message over and over.  It doesn’t end when the device is powered off and on, and seems to be caused by the operating system thinking the build is about to expire.

Works Cited

AppleInsider. (2018, August 31). Apparent iOS 12 beta bug causes never-ending notifications to update software. Retrieved August 31, 2018, from https://appleinsider.com/articles/18/08/30/apparent-ios-12-beta-bug-causes-never-ending-notifications-to-update-software/amp/

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Indie games apocolypse: Stop Making Shovelware

An explosion of games can mean more choice for the consumer, and more revenues for Valve, but it’s anything but good for developers; especially ones that care about their products and won’t deliver bottom barrel shovelware.  The same thing happened with the atari 2600 in the first video game crash.

Loose quality controls led to declining game quality while prices stayed where they were when games were good.  A good title that cost more money to develop than a bad title sold for the same price on the same platform, frustrating the good developers.  The ecosystem was saturated, and more developers competed for the same limited consumer spending.

The result was a collapse of the game industry and the rise of Nintendo and hardware manufactures strict control of their libraries.  Due to this control, consumers had less choice, and the games they did have to choose from had better graphics, less bugs, better investment from the financial system; in short everyone was happy.

When Steam started, it was a platform to distribute a few valve originals, and keep drivers and multiplayer games up to date.  It wasn’t until Valve stopped making games and started focusing intensely on publishing that quality went down.  Valve didn’t have to care about making quality games, it was just a middle man with a no returns policy.  If the customer had a legitimate grievance and tried to vote with thier wallet, it wasn’t like they could get nearly as many PC titles anywhere else.  Reddit said EA Games was evil and spied on them.  Reddit says nothing bad about Steam, except when mom makes it shower.

Like it or not, Valve needs to do something about the deluge of incomplete voxel art games, minecraft rip offs, and general asset flips.  The fees Valve charges do not deter dedicated con artists, so a human employee of Valve should vet the games, not possible bot curators on the platform.  Existing titles should be given a year to comply with a fee for vetting, or face removal.  If the devs of existing titles truly didn’t make an asset flip or shovelware, they’d pay the fee to Valve.

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Pokemon essentials DMCA Takedown

Nintendo has gained a bit of a reputation for its strict copyright policy. In the last few months alone, it filed a few lawsuits against emulation sites. Now, Nintendo has gone after a new target: Pokemon Essentials.

The kit in question, a role-playing game maker, allowed users to “design” their own Pokémon adventures. According to sources, the software used “full tilesets, maps, music, and sprites” from the official games, as well as all the classic mechanics required to catch and collect Pokemon. It was founded in 2007, and was used to create a popular fan game called, “Pokemon Uranium”, which was shut down two years ago following a reported copyright notice from Nintendo. It was only a matter of time before Nintendo shutdown the software people used to make illegal asset flips.

Some people just can’t help violating copyright because they want what they can’t have; someone else’s intellectual property.  You can’t claim fair use or parody when the mechanics of a game or the assets in the game are just too similar to the original made by the current copyright holder.  When you purchase copyrighted media, you are really purchasing a revocable license to use the material as the creator sees fit.  All rights reserved means all rights of any kind when there is any doubt are reserved to the copyright holder.

If you want to make a “Pokemon Game”, you have to pay for a license to make a Pokemon game.  If you can’t afford one, you need to get a business line of credit to buy one and hope that someone buys your asset flip.

Works Cited

Kent, E. (2018, August 29). Nintendo triggers takedown of 11-year-old tool used to build Pok. Retrieved August 29, 2018, from https://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2018-08-29-nintendo-takes-down-11-year-old-pokemon-fangame-kit