Logitech’s PowerPlay delivers no-compromise wireless gaming mice

It’s 2017 and many hardcore PC gamers are still devoted to their wired mice. Ask them why and you’ll likely get two reasons: You don’t have to worry about charging them, and there’s no need to worry about potential latency issues. Either of those issues could be incredibly frustrating during the middle of a heated match.That’s why Logitech developed its PowerPlay system, which can wirelessly charge mice while they’re sitting on a specialized mousepad. Together with the company’s latest wireless technology, PowerPlay could finally be the first cord-free mouse to completely satisfy PC gamers.

Gallery: Logitech PowerPlay | 6 Photos

  • +2

The key to the system is its electromagnetic resonance charging technology, which sends power to the mouse without the need for any cords. The big, obvious benefit: You’ll never have to think about charging your mouse, be it by installing new batteries or plugging in a USB cable. Currently, PowerPlay works with Logitech’s G703 and G903 gaming mice, both of which feature the company’s new Lightspeed technology. Basically, that means they deliver an extremely low latency of 1ms, so you don’t have to worry about any lag. With those specs, they should be just as responsive as wired gaming mice. And in some cases, even more so, according to Logitech.

In my testing, the Powerplay charging mat worked just as advertised. It was truly strange to see my mouse’s battery life go up after several hours of browsing the web and playing games. A small LED light turns on when the mouse is being charged, but otherwise the entire system is pretty discreet. Setting it up is a cinch, too: The mat plugs into your computer over USB, and you just have to plug Logitech’s Powercore Module into the bottom of the mouse to get it ready. While you’d typically need to install a separate USB dongle for the Lightspeed mice, PowerPlay bundles all of that into the mat’s receiver.

After that, put your mouse on the pad and you’re good to go. The PowerPlay system comes with a soft cloth surface and a hard mousepad, both of which sit atop the rubbery charging surface. Since I typically use a metal mousing surface, I leaned toward the Powerplay’s hard cover. But I know plenty of gamers who would prefer the softer alternative, especially when it comes to things like strategy games.

It wasn’t long, though, before I noticed that Powerplay wasn’t a great solution for charging mice quickly. Logitech claims it would take 12 to 14 hours to charge them completely when they’re not in use (and of course, your computer has to be on the whole time). They’ll still get power when you’re using them, but it takes significantly longer to complete a charge cycle. Technically, that’s not a huge problem, since you’ll be using them on a charging surface anyway. But that could be anxiety-inducing if you’re used to taking your mouse on the go.

If that’s the sort of thing that bugs you, my recommendation is to plug a USB cable into your mouse directly just to reach that first full charge. Both the G703 and the G903 should get between 24 and 32 hours of battery life when away from the charging mat, according to Logitech.

Devindra Hardawar/Engadget

Once I was up and running, the combination of Powerplay and Lightspeed made for a revelatory mousing experience. It felt strange not to worry about battery life while also having the freedom of wireless. Both were also very responsive in games like Overwatch and Playerunknown’s Battlegrounds. I could achieve head shots with ease, and since the mousing surface is so large, I didn’t have to worry about awkwardly lifting up the mouse for any quick movement.

Since I’ve been using Logitech’s wireless mice for gaming over the past few years, I didn’t need much convincing about the virtues of cutting the cord. I’ve never noticed latency issues with wireless mice, and I’m far more bothered by the awkwardness of managing a cord with a traditional mouse.

The PowerPlay system’s biggest issue is its $100 price. Once you add another $100 for the G703, or a cool $150 for the G903, you’re basically dropping a lot of money just for the privilege of charging your mouse wirelessly. Ultimately, PowerPlay is a great first stop for Logitech, since it proves how useful cordless power could be. Most gamers, though, will be better off charging their mice the old-fashioned way.


Is this an Xbox One S — or is it a gaming PC?


In the four years since the launch of the current console generation, Eddie Zarick has donejust about everything you can with the Xbox One’s chassis. Well, now he’s stuffed a gaming PC into it.

It fairly raises the question of why, as just about any gaming PC worth the money should have some leg up on a console’s performance. It’s sort of like disguising a Porsche inside a Oldsmobile. But we’ll grant that fitting those components in something like the Xbox One S took a lot of planning and effort. And case mods are the cosplay of hardware, so practicality isn’t necessarily the goal.

Pulling this off required using a laser cutter to fabricate a back plate that could accommodate the necessary ports while maintaining a factory look. But that optical drive slot is cosmetic only — with space at such a premium, Zarick had to go for a solid state design throughout. (“I mean, who uses those things anyway,” he says.) Instead the slot lights up to serve as a power indicator.

Here’s the parts list:

  • Intel Core i3-7100 3.9 GHz dual-core processor
  • Thermaltake CLP0534 22.4 CFM CPU cooler
  • MSI B250I Gaming Pro AC Mini iTX LGA1151 motherboard
  • Crucial Ballistix Sport LT 8 GB DDR4-2400 memory (2 x 4GB)
  • Samsung 840 Pro Series 256 GB 2.5 solid-state drive
  • Zotac GeForce GTX 1050 Ti 4 GB low profile video card
  • PicoPSU-160-XT, 160 watt output, 12 volt input DC power supply.
  • [Source”indianexpress”]

OMG launches second Laser-Tag gaming centre in Gurgaon

“A one of a kind laser tag centre in the city, OMG will provide a square for all the action-lovers and casual gamers alike to meet, play and compete”, shares Sahil and Aakritti.

After receiving an enormously overwhelming response for the previous venture, OMG has upped the ante with the advanced physical live activities that are well-set to captivate the action maniacs and offer a hypnotic gaming experience in the monster arena. The action-packed effects and live play makes for an ultimate experience for thrill-seekers.

OMG features some seriously impressive technology, as it takes the gaming affair sincerely, the games say it!

The dimly lit arena takes you to another universe where you will be always under attack so you better stay on your toes. Get set to venture into the evolution of combat gaming experience from plastic toy guns to paintball to harmless laser guns. Bubble Football is the fun recreation of the original football game which entraps you into a zorb like bubble covering your upper body and head. You have got to possess The Flash’s swiftness and Mr. Fantastic’s machinations to outcraft your opponents. OMG has set a benchmark for the gamers with intricate and mind-boggling maze that will set the difficulty level a few notches higher.

The Gamers’ Paradise has introduced a range of other intriguing activities that will leave you tumbling and falling in laughter – these which will be big with casual gamers and families.


Tencent’s mobile gaming growth continues

Story image for Gaming from MyBroadband

Chinese internet giant Tencent Holdings Ltd. posted double-digit revenue and profit increases as it continued to grow its mobile-gaming, social-media and advertising businesses in the second quarter.

Tencent, one of China’s largest publicly traded companies and the world’s biggest videogame publisher by revenue, also operates the popular social-media app WeChat.

Mobile-game revenue grew 54% and exceeded computer games revenue for the first time. Computer-game revenue grew 29%, but the company warned that future PC revenue growth rates would decline. The company posted 14.8 billion yuan ($2.21 billion) in mobile revenue and 13.6 billion yuan in computer revenue.

Its share price has rose 70% so far this year.

The company said its WeChat app, known in China as Weixin, saw 963 million monthly average users in the quarter, growing 19.5% from a year earlier.

Another of the company’s social-media networks, QQ, saw a 5.4% decline in monthly active users to 850 million. Still, Tencent said the decrease was due to fewer casual users while engagement with core users increased. QQ also saw smart-device growth among younger users.

Online advertising revenue grew 55% to 10.15 billion yuan, driven by increased mobile video views as TV dramas and variety shows attracted users.

In all, profit grew 70% to 18.23 billion yuan, or 1.9 yuan a share, compared with 10.74 billion yuan, or 1.13 yuan a share, a year prior. Revenue grew 59% to 56.6 billion yuan. Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters had expected 53.03 billion yuan in revenue and profit of 1.52 yuan a share.

Chester Yung contributed to this article.


Abrams Artists Agency Forms Gaming Division To Rep Jovenshire, Jesse Cox, More (Exclusive)


The division will live within Abrams’ larger digital department, and has already signed 15 top-tier gaming influencers from both YouTube and Twitch at launch — all of whom were signed under the direction of the agency’s senior vice president, Alec Shankman. Abrams agent Miles Lozano, who also oversaw the signings, will helm the new gaming vertical, which will handle content monetization, channel growth, and branding and marketing deals.

“We have been growing exponentially in various digital verticals with marquee talent,” said CEO Harry Abrams, who founded the agency 40 years ago. “Miles has brought significant signings to the table, and we are confident he will help these clients expand their businesses in the ever-growing gaming and esports verticals.”

Jesse Cox
Jesse Cox

A selection from the new roster, courtesy of Abrams, includes:

  • Jesse Cox: Cox has been in the online gaming world for nearly a decade, and most recently served as the executive producer of the YouTube Red esports comedy series Good Game. He counts 936,000 YouTube subscribers and more than 650,000 followers across other social platforms.
  • Brooke ‘Dodger’ Thorne: As one of the top female broadcasters on Twitch, Thorne — who counts 256,000 followers on Twitch and more than 1 million subscribers on YouTube across both her gaming and vlog channels — is also the host of a popular weekly gaming talk show called Saturday Morning Dooger.
  • Sam ‘Strippin’ Thorne: Thorne, a former model, initially rose to fame in the gaming community as part of the popular Yogscast YouTube franchise. Today, he counts over 230,000 Twitter followers and nearly half a million YouTube subscribers. He is also one of the top 100 Twitch channels, in terms of in-stream audience size, in the world.
  • Dave ‘Lasercorn’ Moss: One of the founding members and hosts of Smosh Games, Moss also operates an independent channel with over 700,000 subscribers. In addition to his digital following, he has appeared on a handful of linear television shows, including Nickelodeon’s Game Shakers and American Ninja Warrior (where he failed horribly).
Brooke ‘Dodger’ Thorne and Dave ‘Lasercorn’ Moss.
Brooke ‘Dodger’ Thorne and Dave ‘Lasercorn’ Moss.
  • Matt Sohinki: Sohinki, another founding member of Smosh Games, counts 400,000 subscribers on his own YouTube channel, as well as 900,000 followers, collectively, between Instagram and Twitter. He regularly hosts esports tournaments, and has created sponsored content alongside top industry brands like EAUbisoft, and ESL.
  • Joshua Ovenshire: The Streamy winner and Smosh Games founding member — best known to fans as Jovenshire — has appeared on TBS’s King Of The Nerds and Disney XD’s Gamer’s Guide To Pretty Much Everything. His YouTube channel, TheJovenshire, focuses on all things geek culture, and he also works as a voice actor.
  • [Source”indianexpress”]

Disney sued for allegedly spying on children through 42 gaming apps

A federal class action lawsuit filed last week in California alleges that the Walt Disney Company is violating privacy protection laws by collecting children’s personal information from 42 of its apps and sharing the data with advertisers without parental consent.

The lawsuit targets Disney and three software companies — Upsight, Unity, and Kochava — alleging that the companies created mobile apps aimed at children that contained embedded software to track, collect, and then export their personal information along with information about their online behavior. The plaintiff, a San Francisco woman named Amanda Rushing, says she was unaware that information about her child, “L.L.,” was collected while playing mobile game Disney Princess Palace Pets, and that data was then sold to third parties for ad targeting.

The class action suit says this violates the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA), which was enacted by Congress in 1999 and designed to protect the privacy of children online. COPPA requires that companies designing apps for children under the age of 13 obtain consent from parents before collecting personal information. In 2013, the FTC revised COPPA, expanding what counts as personal information to include things like geolocation markers and IP addresses. The update also requires third-party advertisers to comply with the rules.

In total, the lawsuit names 42 Disney apps it says run afoul of COPPA. The plaintiff is seeking an injunction barring the defendants from tracking and sharing data collected without parental consent, as well as “appropriate relief, including actual and statutory damages and punitive damages,” plus all costs related to prosecuting the action.

Disney has responded to the lawsuit, saying:

“Disney has a robust COPPA compliance program, and we maintain strict data collection and use policies for Disney apps created for children and families. The complaint is based on a fundamental misunderstanding of COPPA principles, and we look forward to defending this action in court.”

This is not the first time Disney has faced COPPA violations. In 2011, the FTC levied a $3 million civil penalty against subsidiary Playdom after it illegally collected and disclosed personal information from “hundreds of thousands of children under age 13 without their parents’ prior consent.”


Lunar nanobots could bring AR gaming to the moon

lunar-nanobotEnlarge Image

This nanobot concept could take gaming all the way to the moon.


If the European Space Agency has its way, gaming is going to be out of this world.

Lunatix, a company created by a team of space engineers, developed a camera-equipped, jumping nanobot that would be used in augmented reality scenarios on the moon. Gamers would control the robots from Earth, though they’d experience slight delays as the signals travel to the moon and back.

The Lunatix nanobots concept came about through the ESA’s SpaceTech 2016 program, which called on participants to design profitable space businesses. The nanobots would be a key part of a augmented-reality game that would generate revenue through monthly subscriptions. The Lunatix team’s plan is to first develop a game using virtual nanobots in a simulated moon environment to boost interest before deploying the actual hardware.

“After raising initial enthusiasm among Earth’s 1.8 billion gamers with controlling a virtual Nanobot on a simulated lunar surface, there will be the possibility to control real Nanobots. on the Moon, in Pokemon Go!-style augmented reality scenarios,” the ESA said on Wednesday.

If the nanobots are sent to the moon, they’d be based in a rover that would shelter and charge them over the long lunar night. They’d also take advantage of the moon’s low gravity to jump as high as 10 feet (3 meters) and as far as 33 feet (10 meters).

Communicating with the nanobots will involve a delay of roughly 3 seconds, according to Jon Reijneveld, an Airbus Defence and Space system engineer who contributed to the project.

The Lunatix team expects development and deployment of the nanobots would take about four years. The finalized game would use real images and video from the moon. Some “exclusive users” would be able to buy an option that would allow them to control their own nanobot, according to a business plan.

Lunatix is at the beginning stage of the project so It’s hard to know if the gaming nanobots will become reality. Still, it’s an intriguing concept. The team is already imagining a world beyond the moon, writing, “Once the validity of the business proposal has been demonstrated on the Moon, LUNATIX’s next stop could be Mars!”


Macau gaming revenue beats expectations in July

Image result for Macau gaming revenue beats expectations in JulyPlease use the sharing tools found via the email icon at the top of articles. Copying articles to share with others is a breach of FT.com T&Cs and Copyright Policy. Email [email protected] to buy additional rights. Subscribers may share up to 10 or 20 articles per month using the gift article service. More information can be found here.

Macau gaming revenue rose at the fastest pace for the year to date in July, reflecting a sustained comeback for the territory’s casinos. Macau casino revenue rose 29.2 per cent year on year last month, up from June’s 25.9 per cent pace and marking the highest growth rate of 2017 to date. The rise also beat a median forecast of 26 per cent growth from analysts surveyed by Bloomberg. China’s gambling hub reported July revenue from games of fortune at 23bn patacas ($2.86bn), up 14.9 per cent from last month’s 19.99 bn patacas ($2.49bn), according to the latest figures from Macau’s Gaming Inspection and Co-ordination Bureau. Shares in Macau casino operators were mixed after the release of the July revenue figures. Galaxy Entertainment shares were down 0.9 per cent, while Sands China shed 0.4 per cent and MGM China was up 0.9 per cent.



Gaming: a question of skill

Gaming in India is rapidly gaining acceptance, by both customers and legislators. But the question is, what exactly is it, how is it currently treated in India, and what are the best practices followed abroad that can be adopted here to regulate the industry as well as earn the government increased tax revenue?

What is gaming?

Although ‘gaming’ in popular parlance has taken on the meaning of playing computer or video games, the term is in fact a reference to competitive activities — like rummy, chess, bridge, and the like — that are not categorised as sports, as well as the betting that is done on them. For example, not only does horse racing come under gaming, but so does betting on what horse will win.

There are some industry players who believe that betting on sports such as cricket should also come under gaming and be termed as games of skill. Regulating sports betting will bring it into the light and will prevent match-fixing, they argue. The Lodha Committee report, too, recommends this course of action.

FICCI, in a report in 2013, had said that the government stands to earn about Rs. 7,200 crore a year from taxes from only half the Rs. 3 lakh crore gaming industry in India.

How is gaming treated across States in India?

The regulation of gaming in India is fragmented, with each state currently deciding the rules applicable in its jurisdiction, with variations emerging on the definition of gaming, the kinds of games that qualify, and the punishments meted out for indulging in gaming not allowed by law.

For example, Sikkim has the Sikkim Online Gambling (Regulation) Act, 2008 that only looks at online gaming, and not at activities conducted in brick and mortar gaming houses. The Nagaland Prohibition of Gambling and Promotion and Regulation of Online Games of Skill, Act, 2015 only permits skill-based games, defined as all games where there is a preponderance of skill over chance.

The Delhi Public Gambling Act, 1955 penalises the operation of a gaming-house and imposes a penalty for being found in a gaming-house. However, Section 13 of the Delhi Act exempts games of “mere skill” from its ambit.

Laws in other states such as Goa, Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala, Maharashtra, Odisha, and Rajasthan are variations of this format. The All India Gaming Federation has asked the Law Commission — tasked with looking into the regulation of gaming — to consider proposing a nation-wide central gaming law.

What can India learn from other countries?

The U.K. enacted an updated gambling law in 2005 that provided for the creation of a Gambling Commission, which was tasked with crime prevention, the promotion of an open and transparent gaming and gambling industry, and the protection of vulnerable people from the ills and dangers of gambling. The country further updated this legislation in 2014.

Spain has set a 25% tax rate on gambling revenue, among the highest in Europe, and requires customers to provide their unique national identification numbers, names, and addresses before they can be registered to gamble.

Other countries like Singapore, Malta, and the Isle of Man, have robust gaming legislations that can provide good examples of how India can regulate gaming and gambling while increasing government tax revenue, and curtailing misuse.



Five to Try: The Elder Scrolls: Legends launches, and build with bricks and code with LEGO Boost

fivetotry july28 lead

As we get deeper into summer, some truly sweaty and agonizingly hot days may be ahead—depending on where you live, of course. But no matter your location, if you’re looking for some fresh reasons to stay inside with your Android phone, then we’ve got you covered with our latest Five to Try picks.

The Elder Scrolls: Legends leads this week’s list of the Play Store’s hottest debuts, as the fantasy game universe gets the Hearthstone-esque collectible card-battler treatment. Also new is the LEGO Boost app, which pairs with a new set of blocks and gizmos that let you build, code, and control robotic LEGO creations. If you’re looking for further options, Gratus, Galaxy of Pen & Paper, and Revenge of Shinobi round out this week’s list. So grab a few fresh apps and enjoy a little cool comfort away from the sun this weekend.

The Elder Scrolls: Legends

fivetotry july28 elderscrollslegendsIDG
Hearthstone? Nope, it’s the Elder Scrolls rendition.

Blizzard’s Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft is the undisputed king of the competitive card game market right now, but here’s another heavy-hitting fantasy favorite to challenge its reign. The Elder Scrolls: Legends is Bethesda’s attempt to shake up the card-battling scene with its own free-to-play tie-in, which is set in the same universe as epic console and PC adventures like The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim and The Elder Scrolls Online.

The fundamentals aren’t significantly different from Hearthstone: It’s still a head-to-head showdown in which you’ll bring your best deck of spells and fighters into battle, but a dual-lane approach shakes things up here. Also, Legends has a less cartoonish aesthetic, and the story mode should appeal strongly to fans of the franchise. Legends already has a following on PC, and it hits Android with the new Heroes of Skyrim expansion included, which adds a bunch of content inspired by that aforementioned favorite.

LEGO Boost

fivetotry july28 legoboost prLEGO
Just try to imagine that’s an Android tablet in the photo.

Got a kid at home who loves tinkering with LEGO bricks and is handy with a touchscreen? Be sure to check out LEGO Boost. The app is available now ahead of next week’s release of the $160 starter kit. LEGO Boost is like a simpler, more streamlined alternative to LEGO Mindstorms, allowing kids (and some adults) to create different types of robots and then control them via the Android app.

It imparts light coding fundamentals, although zero knowledge is needed to use the drag-and-drop interface. You will, however, need an Android tablet with at least an eight-inch screen as the app unfortunately doesn’t work with smartphones. With the app and kit, you can create rolling robots, meowing cat-bots, and even an AutoBuilder machine that builds smaller LEGO creations. The buy-in price is high and the tablet requirement might limit its reach, but LEGO Boost looks like brainy fun for tech-interested tykes (LEGO suggests ages 7-12).


fivetotry july28 gratusIDG
Don’t tell my family what I said about pizza.

In the midst of struggle, hardship, and frustration, it can be easy to overlook or forget about all of the great things we have going for us in life. That’s exactly why Gratus was created. Don’t worry, it’s not another social networking tool—we don’t need any more of those. Basically, it’s just a log for storing the things you’re thankful for.

Love your family, your dog, your lunch, a shady tree outside your office, or anything else in life? Make an entry in your personal Gratus log. The next time you’re down, feeling hopeless, or just need a reason to smile, fire it up. According to the Play Store listing, the app is designed to “promote good vibes and positivity,” and that really does seem to be the extent of it. If you get hooked on Gratus, you can pay $3 for an optional premium unlock, which adds a daily prompt, a widget, and passcode/fingerprint protection. Otherwise, it’s free to use.