[Feb 28, 2017] Today’s Tech News in 3 Mins
Xbox launches Netflix-like Game Pass subscription with over 100 games.
$10 dollars a month lets you play any of over 100 Xbox One and Xbox 360 games, and the game list will constantly change over time. A key difference from other subscription services is that you can actually download the games to your console without worrying about latency, lag spikes, or bandwidth issues. /TNW
Amazon AWS S3 outage breaks large parts of the internet.
The S3 outage is due to “high error rates with S3 in US-EAST-1”. Affected websites and services include Quora, Engadget, Business Insider, image hosting at a number of publisher websites, filesharing in Slack, and many more. Connected lightbulbs, thermostats and other IoT hardwares are also being impacted. /TechCrunch
Walmart’s updated app helps you skip store lines for both prescription pickups and money transfers.
Once you’ve filled in a medicine or money transfer order on your phone, you just have to waltz up to the appropriate store counter, scan a QR code with the app and complete your business. They’ll start rolling out to stores in March, but the deployment will only finish sometime in the fall. /Engadget
Raspberry Pi Zero W is a $10 computer with WiFi and Bluetooth.
It boasts exactly the same specifications as its predecessor but the Zero W adds both 802.11n WiFi and Bluetooth 4.0 to the existing Zero design. The Zero, which came out in Oct 2015, will stay at $5 (£4), while the Zero W is priced at $10 (£9.60) plus tax. /Engadget
Google has no plans to produce any more Pixel Chromebooks.
The versions that are already out in the market have totally sold out and that there are no plans to make any more of those, either. The Pixel brand these days is now being used for Google’s new line of smartphones. The Pixel laptop is Google’s premium Chromebook and the original product bearing the Pixel name. /TechCrunch
YouTube announced its entry into streaming live TV.
YouTube TV will let you access live and recorded content from major networks both broadcast and on cable. All of this will be coupled alongside YouTube’s existing content on any screen that YouTube is available on. It’ll be available later this spring for $35 a month with no contract; that’ll let up to six users access content whenever they want. /Engadget
Ford wants to launch drones from self-driving vans to deliver all your packages.
The automaker said the idea fits into its self-styled “City of Tomorrow,” a high concept vision of the future involving autonomous vehicles, ride-sharing and so on. It has said it plans to manufacture a completely autonomous car, without steering wheel or pedals, by 2021. /TheVerge
Google Play starts to consider user engagement, not just downloads, in ranking games.
This shift could have a serious impact on how games are marketed, as many publishers often focus on ad campaigns aimed solely at getting games onto users’ devices as a means of getting their titles ranked higher in Google Play’s charts. The changes were announced alongside the launch of strike-through pricing for running promotions, as well as the new editorial pages. /TechCrunch
Amazon is prepping ‘Lily’, a commercial version of Alexa, for fielding questions from phone calls and text messages.
Baked into Lily’s suite of products are Lex and Polly — two AWS developer services that use the same natural language processing as Alexa to power third-party apps as well as voice and text chatbots. Lily is expected to be formally announced around the middle of March. /Engadget
A female Tesla engineer is suing the electric carmaker for “unwanted and pervasive harassment”.
AJ Vandermeyden alleges that she and several other female employees were denied promotions, paid less than their male peers, and retaliated against after making their concerns known to human resources. She filed her lawsuit against Tesla last fall, but only spoke out publicly this week in an article published in The Guardian. /TheVerge