Tesla unveiled a new all-electric SUV, officially called the “Model Y,” on Thursday night, that seats seven, sports a a panoramic glass roof and boasts a 15″ touchscreen interface for accessing all of the vehicle’s controls. “It has the functionality of an SUV, but it will ride like a sports car. This thing will be really tight on corners and we expect it will be the safest midsize SUV in the world by far,” said CEO Elon Musk told the crowd. Read more for a test ride video and additional information.
NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) has detected traces of moving water molecules on the moon’s surface. These water molecules were observed moving on the day-side of the moon and scientists believe it will act as a catalyst for humanity to establish a colony on the lunar surface. “These results aid in understanding the lunar water cycle and will ultimately help us learn about the accessibility of water that can be used by humans in future missions to the Moon. Lunar water can potentially be used by humans to make fuel or to use for radiation shielding or thermal management; if these materials do not need to be launched from Earth, that makes these future missions more affordable,” said Amanda Hendrix, the lead author of the study. Read more for a video and additional information.
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Finally, Tesla has officially launched the standard Model 3 starting at $35,000 and announced that the company would shift all sales online. Elon Musk stated that this shorter range model will cost $35,000 before any savings from tax incentives. “The interior will be slightly better than was originally promised. From the beginning, this has been the goal. It’s an incredible car, and at $35,000 there are still some pretty significant consumer tax credits that can be had,” said Musk on a conference call. Read more for another video and additional information.
After over 15 incredible years at Nintendo of America, and nearly 13 as its President and COO, Reggie Fils-Aime will retire, and his last day with the company will be on April 15th. Doug Bowser, current Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing, will succeed him as President of Nintendo of America. “I really appreciate everything Reggie has done for Nintendo. Inside and outside our company, Reggie is known as an exceptional leader. We are grateful that he is leaving the business in good shape with strong momentum. While we will miss him and we wish him the very best in his retirement, we are also pleased to have such an able successor ready to step into that role. Doug Bowser and the rest of the team will ensure a seamless transition and continued momentum for,” said Shuntaro Furukawa, President of Nintendo Co., Ltd. Read more for another video and additional information.
News website Cheddar claims that Apple is working on a new gaming subscription service after citing five people “familiar with the matter” in a new report says that iPhone-maker started having conversations with game studios last year to create a “Netflix for games.” Subscribers would pay a monthly fee to gain access to a certain number of titles. There’s currently no timetable for when this service will launch, how much it would cost or which publishers, what types of games would be included or what devices it would be compatible with. Read more for another video and additional information
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Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced today the plans to unify the underlying messaging infrastructure of its WhatsApp, Instagram and Facebook Messenger services as well as incorporate end-to-end encryption to these apps. The three services will remain as stand alone apps, and is still in the early stages of the work in hopes to complete it by the end of this year or in early 2020. Read more for a video and additional information.
Fossil Group Inc announced today that it would sell its intellectual property related to a smartwatch technology currently under development to Alphabet Inc’s Google for approximately $40-million, and will send a portion of that R&D team currently to the search giant, with the deal expected to close at the end of January. “The addition of Fossil Group’s technology and team to Google demonstrates our commitment to the wearables industry,” said Stacey Burr, vice president of product management at Google’s Wear OS, a smartwatch platform. Read more for an in-depth look at the latest Wear OS features.
Photo credit: Newsweek / The Weather Channel
The polar vortex swirling above the arctic broke apart into three parts to start off 2019, and now the eastern half of the United States is about to feel its effects. Recent weather models project the onset of a severe and punishing winter weather pattern in just over 10 days, with extreme cold, which will hit the Patriots-Chiefs game on Sunday as well. Despite the polar vortex splitting in the beginning of January, it often takes weeks for the effects to become apparent in day-to-day weather. Read more for another video and additional information.
SpaceX on Friday successfully launched a payload of global communications satellites for Iridium, marking the first launch of 2019 for Elon Musk’s California-based company. The mission, transporting 10 Iridium NEXT satellites to orbit, completes the Iridium NEXT project to replace the world’s largest commercial communication satellite network with 75 new ones. Read more to watch the landing video and for additional information.
Bungie officially announced today that it’s parting ways with Activision Publishing and will self-publish all future Destiny titles. They partnered in 2010 after Bungie sold its Halo rights to Microsoft and started work on what would become 2014’s mega successful online multiplayer / shooter RPG hybrid called Destiny. The franchise’s downfall may be somewhat due to the popularity of free-to-play games like Fortnite and PubG that make all of its revenue with microtransactions. “Looking ahead, we’re excited to announce plans for Activision to transfer publishing rights for Destiny to Bungie. With our remarkable Destiny community, we are ready to publish on our own, while Activision will increase their focus on owned IP projects,” said Bungie. Read more for another video and additional information.