OnePlus’ next flagship phone arrives in Q2 2018

Via Android Police:

The sub-$500 OnePlus 5 was only out for around five months before the 5T usurped it. Now, OnePlus is looking into potential carrier deals in the US to move future phones in larger numbers. Speaking of future phones, OnePlus confirms a new phone is coming in a few months.

[…]

According to Lau, that phone will launch in late Q2 of this year. So, we’re looking at a May or June announcement, most likely. Lau didn’t confirm a name, but it’s safe to assume it will be the OnePlus 6.

How customers who bought the OnePlus 5 without feeling completely ripped off by the announcement of the 5t less than six months later is completely beyond me.

Cranking out new phones instead of shipping ones with more features at a normal pace seems like a really strange way to build customer loyalty.

Black Panther has broken Civil War’s ticket presale record

Via A.V. Club

It may or may not correlate to actual box-office performance come opening weekend, but Deadline reports that ticket presales for Marvel’s Black Panther have already outpaced previous record holder Captain America: Civil War for Fandango’s fastest-selling MCU title in the first 24 hours.

And so it should. From all the trailers we’ve seen so far, the movie looks awesome. A breath of fresh air for the MCU.

An update on Dialog (#01)

I just wanted to take a little bit of time to update interested parties in the status of Dialog, a Micro.blog application for Android.

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Marvel launching Domino series by Gail Simone

Via IGN:

Comic fans must be feeling lucky. Marvel Comics revealed that Domino will be the star of a new ongoing comic book series by fan-favorite writer Gail Simone.

While I’ve never been floored by much of Simone’s writing the way that almost everyone else has, it certainly hasn’t been for lack of trying. I’ve read her Birds of Prey run from a couple years ago as well as her Batgirl at the beginning of the New 52 run and just couldn’t get into it.

I don’t typically buy a book based solely on the main character but given everything that Gail Simone has done in comics, I almost feel like there’s something wrong with me if I don’t ultimately find something of hers I like. Domino is a favourite of mine so maybe this could be the one?

Regardless, it’s nice to see her coming back to Marvel after working for so long over at DC and we still don’t know who the artist will be on the book so that could be another big selling point.

Ryan Ottley’s first post-Invincible work apparently revealed

Via Bleeding Cool:

Bleeding Cool gets the word that he (Ryan Ottley) will be drawing a very high profile gig for Marvel Comics. Specifically on Amazing Spider-Man and working with rumoured writer Nick Spencer. I am told to expect their first work together to be published on Free Comic Book Day.

For years I’ve dreamed of a Ryan Ottley drawn Amazing Spider-Man series and, if the rumours are true, we won’t have to imagine it for much longer. I’ve always felt like his art would be a perfect fit for the character and, with Nick Spencer apparently coming on to write the book, this could be the fresh start the series desperately needs.

Some personal goals for 2018

While most people might say 2017 was a terrible year, it was actually a pretty amazing one for me and my family. My wife and I moved to a new home, we welcomed our son Henry into the world. I reconnected with writing in a way I haven’t in years and started taking some big steps to ensure I keep myself in shape, both mentally and physically.

So, while I can’t exactly predict what the next year will hold for my family, aside from a couple fun trips we have planned, I have a few personal goals I’d like to work on.

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Comics of the year: 2017

I typically don’t do these lists anymore since I find it particularly tough to review/rank comics due to their serialized format but, after reading Vice’s “top 10” list, I couldn’t help but create a small list of some of the books from the year that I really enjoyed. The following are series that either started or ended this year or specific issues that were released in the past twelve months.

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Games of the year: 2017

Typically, around this time every year, I try to put together a list of the best games I completed over the past twelve months. This year was a big one for me and my family so, naturally, I didn’t have nearly enough time to play or finish all the games I had wanted to.

So, this year, I’m going to be making a couple different categories for a couple reasons. First, so that I can still include the titles I admittedly wasn’t able to beat but would still recommend, and second, to shake things up a bit from the usual format.

Enjoy.
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Vice’s top comics of 2017

Via Vice:

Making a list of the top ten comics of 2017 was difficult since ten good comics didn’t get published this year. Even the AV Club, which is almost always right, made a top ten list that was mostly worthless garbage.

The writer of this should be ashamed of himself. In one article, he manages to alienate both mainstream comic fans as well as turn potential fans away, proclaiming this year’s releases were “worthless garbage”. I find it hard to believe someone who reads comics on a regular basis would write something like this.

If you’re looking for something a little more uplifting, I’d encourage people to check out the aforementioned AV Club list instead.

Apple’s statement on iPhone throttling

Via Apple:

We’ve always wanted our customers to be able to use their iPhones as long as possible. We’re proud that Apple products are known for their durability, and for holding their value longer than our competitors’ devices.

To address our customers’ concerns, to recognize their loyalty and to regain the trust of anyone who may have doubted Apple’s intentions, we’ve decided to take the following steps:

• Apple is reducing the price of an out-of-warranty iPhone battery replacement by $50 — from $79 to $29 — for anyone with an iPhone 6 or later whose battery needs to be replaced, starting in late January and available worldwide through December 2018. Details will be provided soon on apple.com.

• Early in 2018, we will issue an iOS software update with new features that give users more visibility into the health of their iPhone’s battery, so they can see for themselves if its condition is affecting performance.

• As always, our team is working on ways to make the user experience even better, including improving how we manage performance and avoid unexpected shutdowns as batteries age.

I’ve gone back and forth on this for a couple days now but Apple’s response has really cleared things up in my mind.

Apple should have been very clear about this practice of throttling performance based on battery health from the start. The fact that they neglected to mention it during any of the WWDC or iPhone events makes it seem all the more sinister. However, if you know Apple at all, you know that certainly wasn’t their intention.

Yesterday’s statement, some of which you can see above, was fantastic. Not only did they explain what and why this was occurring but they went above and beyond by dropping the repair charge on a battery and pledging to provide clearer indications of a phone’s battery condition. This is a huge win for people who felt let down by what they considered a shady move by Apple.

In the future, I hope that the company takes a more transparent approach when adding features like this that were clearly intended to add to a user’s experience, not sabotage it.

Micro.blog now open to all

Via Manton Reece:

Micro.blog is now available to anyone. There’s a limit of 100 new sign-ups each day, so that we can better respond to feedback as the community grows. Thanks so much to the thousands of Kickstarter backers and new users who have helped us improve the platform this year.

I’m a little late to the party but I wanted to congratulate Manton on the soft launch and mention how big of an impact Micro.blog has had on my online routine.

In the months since I joined, I’ve stopped using Twitter entirely, which has improved my mood overall, and reconnected with the idea of posting and owning my content in a way I haven’t in years.

There’s a wonderful community forming on Micro.blog, and I’m really looking forward to what it might become in 2018.

Brian Michael Bendis writing Superman in 2018?

Via Bleeding Cool:

I am told from sources spinning out of a recent Brazilian comic convention that Brian Bendis’ first announced, most prominent title with the publisher, will be the Superman ongoing book, with Brazilian artists Ivan Reis and Joe Prado on art, best known for their work with Geoff Johns on Green Lantern, Blackest Night, Brightest Day, Justice League and Aquaman.

I’ve never been the biggest Superman fan but, out of curiosity alone, I’ll have to check this out. I’ve always followed writers and artists more than I have the characters themselves and if there’s anyone who could change my mind on the Man of Steel, it’s Bendis.

Catherine: Full Body headed west

Following up on a post from the other day, via Gematsu:

Following the debut of its first trailer earlier this morning, Atlus has announced that Catherine: Full Body will be released in the Americas and Europe.

Atlus did not [announce] platforms, a release date, or pricing for the western release. In Japan, Catherine: Full Body is due out next winter for PlayStation 4 and PS Vita.

This is very good news. It basically won’t be here for a year but my gaming backlog is more than long enough to keep me busy until then.

The Last Jedi’s user score is taking a beating by anti-Disney group

Via Polygon:

It’s hard to discern whether reviews of the movie are genuine or, as some outlets have reported, generated by bots or organized attacks from 4chan. One Facebook group, “Down With Disney’s Treatment of Franchises and its Fanboys,” which aligns itself as a pro-DCEU community, announced on Facebook that it had generated trolls to help review bomb The Last Jedi’s score on Rotten Tomatoes.

What a sad way for people to spend not only their time but their technical abilities.

Amazon’s Echo outselling Google Home

Via Android Authority:

As of September 2017, Google has shipped 7 million Google Home products, whereas Amazon has shipped almost three times (20 million) as many Echo devices. Keep in mind that these numbers are just through September and don’t take into account the holiday shopping season.

The question is why? Why is there such a disparity between the two companies? What is Amazon doing so well that Google isn’t?

I would hope that Amazon had sold more devices than Google given the fact that, as the article touches on, the Echo has been in the market two years longer than any of Google’s Home devices.

It’s impressive that in a relatively short time, Google’s been able to take some serious chunks out of Amazon’s market share in a category they stood alone in until just over a year ago.