Gaming

Apple updates tvOS with new home screen and Xbox One, PS4 controller support

New features for your Apple TV

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After revamping the Apple TV app, Apple is now making changes to the core operating system that runs on its Apple TV box: tvOS. At WWDC 2019, the Cupertino company announced a slightly redesigned tvOS with a much richer interface.

Apple’s tvOS 13 doesn’t look drastically different, but it has a new home screen with full-screen previews. Also, it now has multi-user support (finally!) for customers to access their personalized content like music, TV shows, or movies in a shared Apple TV. There’s even a new Control Center for quick access to key features like system sleep and audio routing.

Additionally, Apple Arcade is finally coming to Apple TV as a subscription service good for a family of six. Individual users will have unlimited access to over 100 new and exclusive games with support for game controllers including the Xbox’s and PlayStation DualShock 4. The controllers can also be used with other games from the App Store.

Those who already enjoy the beautiful space screen savers of Apple TV will have more to appreciate thanks to Apple’s latest collection of 4K HDR screen savers showing marine life. These new screen savers were shot by the team behind BBC’s critically acclaimed Blue Planet documentary.

The new tvOS version will be available as a free software update for Apple TV 4K and Apple TV HD later this fall. Developers and beta testers can test out and enjoy tvOS 13 ahead of everyone.

SEE ALSO: Apple Watch comes with new updates: App Store, menstrual cycle tracking, and more

Gaming

Practically no one is playing Netflix’s games, report says

Despite being free to play

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Recently, Netflix gambled big on the future of its platform. Besides cutting a plethora of titles in production, the platform introduced a gallery of mobile games for all of its subscribers. As the gaming library grew, it acquired impressive titles from the best of the mobile gaming world. However, despite Netflix’s efforts, only less than one percent of the platform’s subscribers are playing the games.

In a new app study (via CNBC), Netflix’s games average only 1.7 million users daily. Overall, the games have been downloaded 23.3 million times.

Though not an insignificant number, the figure is a tiny, tiny portion of Netflix’s main user base. For reference, Netflix currently has around 221 million subscribers. That’s less than one percent of Netflix subscribers playing their games.

Netflix’s gaming strategy is an ongoing experiment. While the company has eyed the industry for a while now, Netflix is facing deeper gravitas with making sure every endeavor succeeds. As of late, the platform has bled for subscribers, new and old.

For the first time in a while, Netflix has lost subscribers, marking the rise in popularity of other streaming platforms. It isn’t the only shark in the lake. Hulu, Disney+, and HBO Max are creating compelling cases for a switch.

That said, if you still pay for a Netflix subscribers, the gaming library comes with the price of admission. Besides inspired titles from its properties like Stranger Things, the library also comes with heavy hitters like Spiritfarer.

SEE ALSO: Netflix’s The Gray Man is getting its own cinematic universe

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Accessories

Razer releases giant-sized gaming mouse mats in the Philippines

The Strider Chroma and Goliathus 3XL

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Strider Chroma

What’s better than a regular-sized gaming mouse pad? Giant-sized gaming mouse mats! In fact, two new ultra-sized gaming mouse mats from Razer, the Strider Chroma and Goliathus Chroma 3XL, are now both available in the Philippines.

The warp-and-water resistant Strider Chroma measures 900mm by 370mm and is 4mm thick. It is the world’s first hybrid soft/hard gaming mouse which come with 19 customizable lighting zones.

For an even larger mat that can cover an entire desk, the Goliathus Chroma 3XL measures a massive 1200mm by 550mm and is 3.5mm thick.

This soft mat is ideal for gamers who use lower DPI, or need to cover more ground while moving their mouse.

The two new accessories come with non-slip bases and are powered by Razer Chroma RGB to provide dynamic lighting effects while in-game.

The Strider Chroma is priced at PhP 8,490 while the Goliathus Chroma 3XL is available for PhP 6,990 via the Razer official website, Shopee, Lazada, and their authorized sellers nationwide.

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Gaming

Steam will support Joy-Cons soon

Plus other Nintendo controllers

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For how much they cost, the Nintendo Switch’s Joy-Cons could certainly see more use outside of console exclusivity. Thankfully, developers are finding new ways to use controllers for other applications. If you want to get more use out of your Joy-Cons, Steam is working on compatibility for the Switch controllers.

In a new Steam beta test, Valve released support for Joy-Cons and other Nintendo controllers. As you can do with a Switch, players will soon be able to use either just one Joy-Con or both as a pair. However, since it’s in beta, individual games have not announced support specifically for the Joy-Con.

If anything, connecting the Joy-Con through Steam should be relatively easy. The gaming hub already offers plug-and-play support for most controllers available in the market. Of course, better support means that developers (and fans) can tailor settings depending on controller.

With the number of third-party games on the Switch, it’s believable that there are Switch players who are making first-time transitions to PC gaming. In that case, allowing Joy-Cons into PC gaming — albeit not the best controller for such — will prove a necessary jumping point.

Besides Steam, Apple is also working on support for the Switch controllers, adding new life to the tiny pair. As for Steam, however, Joy-Con support should officially come soon after the beta test.

SEE ALSO: iOS 16 will support Nintendo Joy-Cons

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