We’re halfway through 2019 and we all know that the best phones have yet to come. While we wait for new launches, here’s what’s Now Playing on GadgetMatch:
Movies to see
Spider-Man: Far From Home
Rodneil: This might just be Spider-Man’s best appearance on the MCU to date. It manages to address the somber events of Avengers: Endgame — a film it immediately follows — while maintaining its comedic tone. It’s perfect for what it’s trying to be — a Spidey film set in a larger Marvel universe.
The Carter Effect
Rodneil: This documentary details the massive impact of eight-time NBA All-Star Vince Carter on pop culture and the Canadian basketball scene. It’s a timely watch as the Toronto Raptors — the team that Carter helped put on the map — recently won the NBA Championship and with Carter entering the final season of his NBA career.
Black Hole Apocalypse
Kevin: What exactly are black holes? I played this documentary as background noise but then, like a black hole, it sucked me in. It explains what astrophysicists think about these hard-to-explain concepts and how they might behave. What got me hooked are the CGI-driven dramatizations of theories like what would physically happen to a person if they go near and into a black hole. It may not be for everyone but for the wondering minds, it’s really interesting.
TV shows to binge-watch
Marvel’s Jessica Jones (Season 3)
MJ: In the past two seasons, Jessica Jones didn’t give a shit. This time, she has no choice now that she’s branded as a hero. Now running on its final season, Jessica teams up with Trish to take down a genius psychopath, despite being haunted by a traumatic past that broke their relationship. The show also tackles every character’s moral compass and the concept of heroism, as well as their growth throughout the series.
The Kirlian Frequency
Kevin: Think The Twilight Zone or Tales from the Crypt — only in animated form. The Kirlian Frequency is a collection of short stories revolving around the small, creepy town of Kirlian in Buenos Aires. This Argentinian web series follows a radio DJ who broadcasts his show only at night and tells the different stories of people losing their way to Kirlian. What happens next is for you to find out.
Stranger Things 3
Chay: The year is summer 1985 in Hawkins, Indiana. Our protagonists have grown up and are on a break from school, busy exploring being teenagers — they’re all in a relationship except for Will, who just wants to play Dungeons and Dragons. Who can blame him? He missed out on his childhood no thanks to the upside down. One thing that struck me this season, and what I think made it the best season yet, is the pattern of its strong female characters taking charge and telling us to 👏🏻 listen 👏🏻 to 👏🏻 women 👏🏻 — from Eleven fighting the Mind Flayer, to Joyce solving the mystery of her fridge magnets, to Max teaching Mike a lesson, to Nancy pursuing a story even if it means being fired by middle-aged misogynists, to newcomer Robin cracking Russian codes, to Erica (Lucas’ younger sister) taking no shit and standing up for herself.
Albums/Songs/Podcasts to listen to
FEVER by GFRIEND
Vincenz: GFRIEND has managed to keep their signature style with a newer song concept. Unlike their previous classical tracks, this one is a Moombahton summer song — and it’s a bop. Their vocals are still powerful even if they haven’t showcased the usual adlibs. The music video visuals blend well with the song’s rhythm, which captivated me a lot.
Racecar by Gabe Bondoc
Rodneil: Fil-Am acoustic artist Gabe Bondoc hasn’t released new music since 2016 so “Racecar” completely took me by surprise. The song talks about spending time with a person you want to get with. The song gives off a sexy vibe and I’ve had on repeat since its release.
Stranger Songs by Ingrid Michaelson
Chay: You might know her for the song “You and I”, but Ingrid Michaelson’s newest album sounds nothing like the popular hit from 2008. Inspired by Stranger Things, the songs on the album are actually tied to the show. My favorite tracks include “Pretty”, which is about Eleven becoming her own person, and “Young and in Love”, a fun bop that reminds me of the blossoming love stories in the show’s third season. Stranger Things fan or not, you will enjoy and occasionally find yourself singing along to the songs, as their themes are universal and relatable.
Games to play
Super Mario Maker 2
Luigi: Finally, the perfect Mario game comes to the Switch! Like Super Mario Odyssey before it, Super Mario Maker 2 fits perfectly in the Switch’s pantheon of games. You can breeze through thousands of creatively themed levels or take near-sadistic puzzles with you on-the-go. Most importantly, you can get those creative juices flowing in the improved game design mode with so many possibilities.
GadgetMatch: Our dear Matchketeers’ recommendation for this month is Lucifer. Based on DC Comics, it tells the story of what happens when the Lord of the Underworld decides he just wants to take a break. He ends up in Los Angeles where he meets Chloe — a female detective who’s presence renders him powerless. Lucifer enjoys the thrill of actually brushing with death and decides to play consultant to the smart and steadfast Chloe. It also helps that the Tom Ellis — the actor who plays Luficer — is a real charmer guaranteed to steal your heart.
Now Playing is the GadgetMatch team’s favorite games, movies, TV shows, and more each month. If you’re curious to know what we’re into at the moment, this is what you should check out. So grab your popcorn, get some drinks, and enjoy what’s now playing!
Hundreds of K-Pop songs by KakaoM removed from Spotify
Including songs from IU, LOONA, Dreamcatcher, GFRIEND, SEVENTEEN, MAMAMOO, and more
K-Pop has been making waves both in South Korea and outside their homeland. And with the recent launch of Spotify Korea, international fans are expecting it to be recognized by major Korean music shows as an additional attempt in making more underrated artists and groups succeed without totally relying on Korean streaming platforms and Korean fans alone. But the recent feud between KakaoM and Spotify put everything to a screeching halt.
What is KakaoM?
KakaoM is a large co-publisher of K-Pop albums by Korean artists. Other than being a music publishing house, they’re also a music and concert production house, events management agency, talent agency, and even a record label. This basically means they can handle everything from handling K-Pop trainees and talents, up to pre-production, production, and post-production phases of a single, EP, mini album, or even a full album.
Other than KakaoM’s in-house artists like IU (under EDAM Entertainment), Apink, VICTON, and Weeekly (under PlayM Entertainment), as well as non-KakaoM talents such as LOONA, Dreamcatcher, MAMAMOO, GFRIEND, SEVENTEEN, HyunA, and (G)-IDLE, this long Twitter thread shows the full list of K-Pop groups, duos, and soloists that are handled and/or whose albums were published by KakaoM:
artists that had their stuff on spotify deleted, a thread
— ً (@lemonphobic) February 28, 2021
Explaining the fiasco
In an article published by the Korean site NAVER, Spotify has informed that KakaoM was unable to extend the validity of the agreement. Thus, effectively ending the contract today, March 1, 2021. Spotify also reported that they’ve been keeping in touch with KakaoM for a year but to no avail. They even said that KakaoM never informed the artists nor their respective agencies prior to the cancellation.
KakaoM isn’t totally a stranger in such issues. This already happened in 2019 when KakaoM failed to mass produce LOONA’s “[X X]” albums despite the large volumes of album pre-orders. That hindered LOONA from getting their first win in a music show. It even came to a point where they failed to renew LOONA’s songs listed under them in Spotify.
FIRST YOU RUIN LOONA’S SALES AND THEIR CHANCE FOR A FIRST WIN IN 2019, NOW YOU REMOVE HALF OF THE SONGS I LISTEN TO ON SPOTIFY……THIS IS IT…….YOU WILL NEVER SEE THE END OF ME KAKAO M I WANT YOU GONE FOREVER!!!!!!!!!!!
— nina! (@jeonsbits) February 28, 2021
This also has a massive effect among international K-Pop artists and fans in general. With the large number of groups and artists alone, Spotify not only helps them get on a larger scale outside Korea, but it also contributes records to music charts such as Billboard.
Streaming charts have always been a big deal among K-Pop fans. With Spotify’s recent entry in the Korean music industry, fans have speculated that this unsettled agreement between Spotify and KakaoM was due to the fact that they don’t want to lose Melon, which is Korea’s top and largest music streaming platform with 28 million subscribers.
Other than the reliance of chartings and rankings by music shows such as Mnet’s M Countdown, KBS’s Music Core, SBS’s Inkigayo, MBC’s Music Core, and more, the streaming platform is owned by none other than KakaoM. This is a speculation all along but the fact that Spotify has 345+ million subscribers in 170 markets dwarfs Melon alone.
Stan Twitter memes everywhere
Some fans were able to make humor out of this controversy.
kakao m: removes their artist’ songs from spotify
kpop stans: lets boycott spotify
— ً (@jjkpremacist) March 1, 2021
With KakaoM’s Melon ownership, international fans have joked around that signing up to Melon will never happen.
Lmao Kakao M thought people gonna go to Melon after they remove their content from Spotify but instead we all went to YouTube music and apple music pic.twitter.com/lAQe330xgt
— ☁⁷ ¦ SEOKJIN’S VOCALS ARE HEAVEN ITSELF (@millkygyuu) March 1, 2021
The fury of the K-Pop international fanbase might have made KakaoM realize their wrong action.
Kakao M after realizing removing songs on spotify is a stupid move: pic.twitter.com/6oT9zDWXbu
— minwon ; \⁷ D-2 (@Meaniethepooh) March 1, 2021
Orbits aren’t late to the meme party
— TEAMLOONA (@loonateams) March 1, 2021
It seems like every K-Pop fan is transferring to YouTube Music (not even Apple Music)
Spotify and Kakao m issue
Meanwhile youtube music: pic.twitter.com/QEtPv0D9EL
— JunHoshi 1+🐯 (@YeyHuihuiii) March 1, 2021
KakaoM as Thanos, anyone?
Kakao M, which holds the streaming rights to many South Korean artists (and owns Melon), have pulled out of their license agreement with Spotify causing many Korean songs and artists to be unavailable on Spotify worldwide.
When you can’t handle the competition … pic.twitter.com/no13lEpUb6
— Nuice Media (@nuicemedia) March 1, 2021
Memes aside, Spotify has re-assured fans that this issue is temporary and can still be resolved once KakaoM reaches a new global deal. Fans (like me) are hoping that KakaoM will settle this as soon as possible or this might be a huge loss not just to them, but for fans, artists, and their respective agencies as well.
Globe’s Virtual Hangouts: Music, campus, K-Pop, and esports
More coming this year
Last year, Virtual Hangouts brought you music festivals, concerts, youth summits, K-fan meets, and esports tournaments with the #OLTogetherNow. Well, strap up because they’re back.
Globe launched their Virtual Hangouts return with a virtual 360-degree view launch event last February 18. They, of course, had to tease us with sneak peeks of GoJAM, GoCAMPUS, GoKOREAN, and GoESPORTS this year.
Jumping off of last year’s GoJAM, Virtual Hangouts partnered with Karpos Live to bring a concert series featuring local and international acts from Paradise Rising, a music collective born out of Globe and 88rising’s partnership. Talents such as Jason Dhakal, Claudia Baretto, Leanne and Naara, and more are in this year’s line-up.
In light of circumstances last year, GoJAM brought you virtual Wanderland Music Festival 2020 and the Double Happiness: Winter Wonder Festival. So, tune in and wait for any new updates on this year’s events. While on the wait, GoJAM is stepping up their virtual immersive experience with virtual 360 concerts and choose-your-own-adventure interviews in this year’s plans.
GoCAMPUS is bringing in another virtual youth summit and Future Reinvented. Students will be challenged to put theory into practice through a 5G Hackathon where teams make real-life applications of 5G technology.
With these events, GoCAMPUS hopes to reinvent school and learning experiences for students. While, empowering them to eventually bring to life real-world applications of 5G technology in society, industries, and smart cities.
Globe and K-Pop sensation BLACKPINK’s partnership and the recently concluded THE SHOW virtual concert aside, GoKOREAN has even more in store.
With GoKOREAN, K-fans get to enjoy interactive activities, like the design-your-own cup sleeves event as a way of celebrating the birthdays of BLACKPINK members. Virtual Hangouts will be having the Kmmunity Fest where fans can have a safe space to mingle and share their love of all thing K-Culture. Kmmunity Fest will be new platforms such as SHOOR, Upstream, as well as Vlive and VLive+.
Globe’s ongoing efforts to improve the Philippine esports scene by developing and discovering new esports talents and athletes was loud and clear with their VH UltiCup last year. How? Well, they opened both professional and amateur gamers to the competitive scene and giving them the opportunity to represent the country at the SuperGameFest 2020.
With its recent partnership with Riot Games Southeast Asia, it is no surprise that Globe is paving way for new opportunities for local gamers and enthusiasts. GoESPORTS has a few tournaments on their line-up for this year so keep your eyes peeled for any announcements.
If you’re interested in music, campus learning, K-culture, and esports, you can be part of these upcoming events on Virtual Hangouts simply through the GlobeOne app. On the app, just click on the Virtual Hangouts tab to view the events and join.
Disney+ now streaming in Singapore
Have you subscribed yet?
The wait is over. Disney+ is now finally available in Singapore.
If you’ve been longing to stream Disney classics, new shows like The Mandalorian in the Star Wars universe, or just want a feel good flick from the Marvel Cinematic Universe, you can now do so via the streaming app.
The subscription costs SG$ 11.98 per month or SG$ 119.98 for a year. With it you’ll have access to a library of 500 movies and over 15,000 episodes of some of your favorite shows from Disney Channel.
You’ll also gain access to content by other major entertainment companies like Pixar, National Geographic, and Star.
To sign-up, users need to go to the Disney+ website and you’ll be asked to input your email address so they can keep you updated on how to subscribe. A subscription plan lets the user stream on four different devices at the same time. There are also different profiles for each subscription just like Netflix. However, instead of just five, Disney+ gives you up to seven profiles.
GeekCulture put together a list of supported devices so check them out to see if you have any of them.
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