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Minecraft Earth
Minecraft Earth is coming this summer, and it won’t cost you a penny, but it does require one thing, a smartphone. Microsoft wants to take the Pokémon Go concept to the next level, and players will “collect resources, fight mobs, and gain experience points” – and the game can be played in co-op mode with friends. It’s scheduled to be released this summer. Read more for the official trailer.

Epic HoloLens 2 Apollo 11
Microsoft wanted to kick off its Build developer conference in Seattle with a HoloLens 2 Apollo 11 moon landing, but the live demonstration didn’t quite go as planned. Fortunately, we do have a rehearsal video showing the holograms that were streamed directly to the headsets from remote PCs, powered by Epic Unreal Engine’s pixel streaming feature. It’s capable of transmitting high-quality images to HoloLens headsets that are remotely rendered on powerful PCs using desktop GPUs rather than relying solely on the built-in mobile GPU. Read more for the clip and additional information.

Microsoft Minecraft AR
What happens when Minecraft meets augmented reality? This upcoming game from Microsoft of course. Set to be revealed on May 17th, it features the traditional inventory menu from the original game siting along the bottom of the screen, and the rest is filled with the world of “Minecraft.” If you’re already familiar with Pokémon Go, this new game should be very easy to pick up. Read more for the teaser video.

World Video Game Hall of Fame

“Mortal Kombat,” “Colossal Cave Adventure,” “Super Mario Kart,” and the ubiquitous “Solitaire” game built into Microsoft Windows were all inducted into the World Video Game Hall of Fame Tuesday at a special ceremony. For those unfamiliar with the second inductee, “Colossal Cave Adventure”, released in 1976, was recognized for providing the foundation for a genre of fantasy and adventure games, despite having no graphics and relying on players typing simple computer commands like “get lamp.” Read more to watch the entire ceremony and for additional information.

Split-Design Xbox Controller
Photo credit: Yeong seok Go
Industrial designer Yeong Seok Go has some interesting ideas for next-generation Xbox controllers, and it’s basically a split-design inspired by smooth pebbles. Simply put, rather than using several different types of game controllers for various titles (shooters, racing, etc.), this design enables you to move your hands in a natural manner, whether it be punching out combos, aiming in an FPS, or even driving a supercar. Read more for additional pictures and information.

Microsoft Surface Hub 2S 2X

At $8999, the Microsoft Surface Hub 2S is touted as a collaborative display, but it’s essentially a 50.5-inch rolling PC. Featuring an 8th-gen Intel Core i5 processor with Intel UHD Graphics 620, a 4K webcam, 8GB of DDR4 RAM, a 128GB M.2 SSD, integrated speakers, USB-C, USB-A, HDMI , mini-DP, a stylus, finger print reader, and an 8-element microphone system for video conferencing. Plus, you can use the Hub 2S with the Steelcase Roam Mobile Stand and APC Charge Mobile Battery to share ideas where AC power isn’t available. Read more for a hands-on video, additional pictures and information.

Forza Street iOS Android Windows
Photo credit: Windows Central
Microsoft has officially rebranded “Miami Street” into “Forza Street”, and for those who haven’t yet tried the free-to-play game, it basically offers a “race-on-the-go” experience for Windows 10, iOS as well as Android users. Simply put, players choose an event, set their lineup, and race to collect legendary cars. To keep things accessible on mobile devices, Forza Street offers timing-based controls rather than direction. Read more for a gameplay video and additional information.

Xbox One S All Digital
Photo credit: Roland Quandt / WinFuture
WinFuture managed to get their hands on the first images of the Xbox One S All Digital, and it’s exactly as it sounds…. an Xbox One S minus the Blu-ray drive and equipped with a 1TB hard drive as well as preinstalled copies of Forza Horizon 3, Minecraft and Sea of Thieves. There’s no official release or pricing information available yet, but it could be revealed as early as April 16th and priced around $260. Read more for a video, additional pictures and information.

Microsoft HoloLens 2 US Army

Photo credit: US Army via The Verge
Microsoft won a $480-million contract to supply prototypes for augmented reality systems to the US Army for use on combat missions and in training back in November. This contract could eventually lead to the military purchasing over 100,000 headsets and is intended to “increase lethality by enhancing the ability to detect, decide and engage before the enemy.” Here’s a first look at how these special HoloLens 2 headsets look. “Augmented reality technology will provide troops with more and better information to make decisions. This new work extends our longstanding, trusted relationship with the Department of Defense to this new area,” said a Microsoft spokesman said in an email statement. Read more for another video and additional information.

Microsoft XYV Laptop
Photo credit: Yonghwan Kim
The problem with most laptops these days is that the ones built specifically for gaming are quite bulky, but what if there was portable dock that can easily slide into any backpack? Introducing the Microsoft XYV laptop with the Reinforcer Dock. This dock features an external graphics card, power supply, a cooling system, and all the extra ports you could need for your gaming accessories. You can either use it as is, or connect everything to a larger display. Read more for additional pictures.