Don Bradman Cricket 17 Release Date for PC Announced; May Not Be Available on Disc

Don Bradman Cricket 17 Release Date for PC Announced; May Not Be Available on Disc

Don Bradman Cricket 17 Release Date for PC Announced; May Not Be Available on Disc
HIGHLIGHTS
Don Bradman Cricket 17’s PC release date is January 22
The game will be available for the PS4 and Xbox One on December 22
The PC version is probably digital only
If you thought you could play Don Bradman Cricket 17 on the PC at the same time as it hits the PS4 and Xbox One, think again. Developer Big Ant Studios has confirmed that the PC version of the game has been delayed to January 22.

“We have built completely new batting, bowling and fielding mechanics based on player feedback,” Big Ant Studios CEO, Ross Symons said in a prepared statement. “With Don Bradman 17 releasing right in the heart of the Aussie cricket season, we’re looking forward to players recreating the classic moments of the summer of cricket in their homes.”

(Also see: Don Bradman Cricket 17 Price in India and Release Date Confirmed)

“We were overwhelmed by the success of our first run at Don Bradman Cricket,” Symons added. “To this day players from around the world play it daily, whether they are simulating their favourite test team matchups, or playing games with as little as one over each side. We think they’re going to love the enhanced career mode, refined on-field mechanics, and enhanced visuals and animation. After all, many of the changes came as a direct result of feedback from our most dedicated fans.”

“The first Don Bradman Cricket game did a wonderful job of reflecting the heritage of The Don, and giving cricket fans around the world an authentic and accurate rendition of the sport on their gaming consoles,” Rina Hore from the Bradman Foundation said. “We’re looking forward to seeing how fans respond to this year’s greatly enhanced version.”

(Also see: Don Bradman Cricket Review: If Cricket Is a Religion, This Is Prayer)

Furthermore, it appears that Big Ant could be following the footsteps of bigger publishers like Ubisoft and EA by not having a disc version of the game available at retail for PC. Reason being, a press release from the studio mentions a retail and digital release of the game on the PS4 and Xbox One. All that’s said for PC is that it would be available on Steam a month later.

Tags: Big Ant Studios, Cricket Games, DBC, Don Bradman Cricket 17, DBC 17, PC games, PC gaming, Don Bradman Cricket 14, PS4, Xbox One, PC

[“source-ndtv”]

Amazon Echo: Fun, But Not Very Useful – Yet

Amazon Echo voice activated assistant

Usefulness
Functionality
Price

Summary


Echo is a fun gadget that doubles as an audio speaker and an automated assistant to handle small tasks. While promising, today it doesn’t do enough to be meaningful as a productivity tool.

How would you like to have your own administrative assistant to help you research information and compile simple lists?  All done hands-free by saying commands aloud?

And when you’re not assigning or asking things, how would you like an audio speaker that sounds good, so you can listen to music in the background as you work?

Interested? Then you’ll want to check out the new Amazon Echo.

We tapped into the expertise of Brent Leary, industry analyst, who got an early look at the Amazon Echo. He shared his thoughts for this review.

Key Amazon Echo Features

Amazon Echo is an exciting new device that in the future could change the way we interact with the environment around us.

Think of the Amazon Echo as a speaker that lets you listen to music — but one you can also talk to.  It answers questions and performs simple tasks such as creating shopping lists and to-do lists.

The Echo consists of two parts:

  • a combined speaker / microphone device, and
  • a software app.

The device is a cylinder-shaped speaker that stands upright. It’s 9.25 inches tall and just 3.27 inches across. The speaker is omnidirectional (it broadcasts out to all sides).

Around the top of it are seven microphones to pick up your voice from all directions.

Let’s say you want to know the weather. You simply address it by its name (“Alexa”) so it knows you are talking to it.

Say the word “Alexa.” Then ask something like, “What’s the weather in Atlanta?”

If the Echo is asleep, it will wake up. If it is playing music, it will stop and answer your question.

It can hear you across the room. Amazon calls this “far field voice recognition.”

Via your WiFi connection, it streams your request to the cloud where the Echo “brain” resides.

Within seconds, Alexa (equipped with a female voice) speaks the answers back to you — hands free.  The spoken answers also appear typed out in the app on your tablet or browser.

The Echo device works together with its cloud-based app connected to the Internet.  The app is what enables it to create a shopping list, for instance.  And it’s not just music you can add to your shopping list. You can add food, clothing or other items.  You can also create a to-do list.

The accompanying app can be used on the Kindle Fire, Android devices, and browsers.  You can use the app even when you’re away from the speaker device.

Amazon Echo app

Pros

The Amazon Echo is innovative and has a lot of positives going for it:

  • Echo is simple to set up.
  • Its voice recognition is good. You can speak naturally and it still picks up your commands.
  • Alexa’s speech sounds natural — not like a robot.
  • The speaker delivers nice sound output. With Bluetooth you can connect tablets and phones and listen to music services such as Pandora and Spotify through the speaker.
  • It comes with Amazon Prime and TuneIn integrated already.
  • It is relatively inexpensive.  It runs $199, but Amazon Prime subscribers get it for just $99 currently.

Cons

The biggest downside with the Amazon Echo is its limited usefulness — so far. Today, it’s really more of a consumer entertainment gadget that’s not all that useful for productivity:

  • For small businesspeople looking for personal productivity tools, it is likely to disappoint. Today, it’s limited mainly to looking up facts you can find online and creating simple lists.
  • It handles easy questions well, such as math calculations or queries about straight-forward facts. However, as the video below demonstrates, it can get stumped. Sometimes one word in the question makes a difference.
  • It would be nice if it were tied into recommendation engines like Yelp to get answers to questions about things like “best pizza places,” for example.
  • It would be nice to integrate music services like Spotify. While you can play tunes from Spotify over the speaker via Bluetooth, you can’t give Echo voice commands to play songs from your Spotify account.
  • Used as a speaker, it certainly has decent quality. But it’s not the best speaker on the market. High-end audiophiles will demand more.

Who Amazon Echo Is Best For

The Echo is for early adopters who love to be the first in their circles to try new devices. If you like experimenting with innovative gadgets, you’ll love the Echo.

And if you’re an Amazon Prime subscriber, you’ll especially like it because of the great introductory price. The following video by Brent Leary shows the Echo in action.

Amazon Echo shows exciting promise as a personal entertainment device / personal assistant.

But right now it is limited. Mainly you can use it as a speaker for cloud-based music and video sound. You use it to answer simple questions and create lists.

Echo doesn’t do much more than that — yet.

Amazon says more services and functions are coming. That may be quite soon, given that the device is tied to a cloud app that Amazon can easily update. Right now, though, it is not full-featured enough to be a productivity tool for your business (or for you personally).

Our star rating gives Amazon the benefit of the doubt that it actually will follow through with more services and smarts via the cloud.

Echo is one of those devices that, if we look back a few years from now, we may wonder how we lived without it. Echo is ahead of its time.

[“source-smallbiztrends”]

5 Reasons Your Handmade Business is Not Gaining Traction

hand planer

Are you working harder than you think you should have to work in order to gain traction in your handmade business? If you are working hard and getting results, eventually you will learn to work smarter so you can get the same results with less effort. This would be a good thing.

On the other hand, if you are working hard and not getting the results you seek, your unnecessary struggle could be due to one or more of five specific handmade business mistakes and things that are missing from your entrepreneurial equation. Keep reading to find out what they are, and how to fix them.

Are You Making These Handmade Business Mistakes?

1. You Have No Target Audience

The first question I ask when coaching a new entrepreneur is, “Who is your target audience?” Nine times out of 10, the answer is something like, “Everyone.” This is a fear-based approach to business that wrongly assumes that if you omit anyone from your target audience, you’ll make less money. The opposite is true. The more focused you are on a specific niche, the more money you’ll make, the more fun you’ll have, the more freedom you’ll enjoy, and the less you’ll struggle in your business.

Make it a goal to sell your product to the exact same person over and over again, just with a different name each time.

Drill down deeply into the psyche of your one customer, and then find him or her every day in different places. Doing this will help you pinpoint your perfect buyer persona and ensure that the people who are most inclined to be attracted to your product can quickly spot you in a crowded market place.

Action Step: Survey your customers annually to find out what makes them tick. Get the usual demographic information like name, age and gender, but invest the bulk of your survey exploring their psyche. What keeps them up at night? What are their biggest challenges and pain points? What makes them happy or sad? What inspires them? What kind of change are they seeking in their lives? Use Survey Monkey (or a similar service) to do this.

You are limited to 10 questions with Survey Monkey’s “freemium” service, so either upgrade so you can ask more questions (more than 20 is too many), or be very intentional about the 10 questions you ask.

2. You Are Not Embracing Your Role as Leader

If you are not proactively embracing your role as a leader, you are hurting yourself and your business. I am a member of several paid membership groups (both local and virtual) where everyone is invested in themselves and in each other. We build each other up, and we offer tips and solutions to help each other with all kinds of business challenges.

While you can achieve some level of success toiling away on your own island, you will eventually burn out. You’ll have less fun and you’ll stunt your growth as a human being. You can and should avoid this fate by surrounding yourself with other creative entrepreneurs who are leveraging their successes, failures, challenges, and expertise for the benefit of themselves and other similarly situated people.

I cannot overstate the value of this kind of interaction. It’s one of the reasons I launched the Indie Business Network, and why membership programs like IBN are so popular. People who surround themselves with like-minded entrepreneurial leaders gain traction faster than people who do not, and their businesses are more successful. It’s that simple.

Action Step: Find at least one group of like-minded entrepreneurs, and join them. If you cannot find such a group, create one.

3. You Are Not Blogging

Maintaining a blog sharpens your entrepreneurial saw. It also helps you to organize and clarify your thoughts. Search engines love sites that feature fresh content regularly, so if you are not blogging weekly, you are missing out on 52 opportunities a year to attract new customers to your site without spending any money.

Blogging helps you to establish yourself as an authority in your field, and it builds your confidence as a business leader.

I hear many creative entrepreneurs say that they do not blog because they have nothing to say. If you are making a living selling the products you make, and you have nothing to say, you should cut your losses and close down now.

Action Step: Set up a blog and start blogging today. It does not have to be perfect. A blog is free to set up on WordPress. Start one today and blog at least once a week. Your business will grow, and you’ll be a better business leader because of it.

4. You Are Not Building Your Customer List

According to the 2015 Wasp Barcode Technologies Survey of Small Business, email is the top marketing tool used by small businesses. (Interestingly, according to the report, use of Facebook as a marketing tool is declining.)

When I started the my business, the first thing I did was launch a website. The second thing I did was publish an email newsletter. I didn’t have a single customer and my only subscribers were the six people I had met at a soapmaking meetup the week before.

Perhaps the fact that I was a journalism major in college helped me know in my gut that a newsletter would be critical to my success. Whatever the case, I was right. Fast forward 16 years, and I’m still right.

An email newsletter gives you the kind of intimate access to your customers that you cannot get with any social media outlet or even with a blog. People can read it at their leisure, and they can hit the reply key and communicate directly with you.

Perhaps best of all, you own and control your newsletter, and the subscriber list you create. All of social media can die off tomorrow, but with an email newsletter, you’ll be unscathed because you have direct, one-on-one access to your customers. Few things can support the long term sustainability of your business like an email newsletter.

Action Step: Start a newsletter today. I recommend Mail Chimp, but you can also use Constant Contact, Mad Mimi and others.

5. You Refuse to Embrace Technology

One of the things I consistently hear from handmade business owners is that they are not tech savvy. This self fulfilling prophecy is the crutch that forms an eternal excuse for you not to make a video or set up a blog or try out Snapchat.

Not everyone will have the same level of technological acumen, and that’s OK. But every entrepreneur must learn enough about technology to know how to use it for the benefit of his or her business and customers. If you were not embracing technology a decade ago, everyone would understand. If you’re not embracing technology today, you’re committing business suicide.

Stop telling yourself that you are not technologically savvy, and become technologically savvy.

Action Step: Look at how businesses similar to yours use technology, then make a list of all of the things you see others doing that you think would benefit your business. Use your favorite search engine to find classes or programs to help you learn how to incorporate those things into your business, and then do it. Make this an ongoing part of your business routine so you don’t get left behind.

What did I miss? What other handmade business mistakes can explain why you’re not gaining traction?

Hand Planer Photo via Shutterstock

[“source-smallbiztrends”]

With Xbox Scorpio, Microsoft Does Not Want to Turn Consoles into the Graphics Card Market

With Xbox Scorpio, Microsoft Does Not Want to Turn Consoles into the Graphics Card Market

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Phil Spencer claims that Xbox Scorpio will not see an immediate successor
  • He does not want the console market to emulate the PC space
  • Xbox Scorpio is out in the holiday season of 2017

With the PS4 Pro hitting the shelves in less than 10 days, the age of iterative consoles, whether we like it or not, begins. And while Sony has kept its cards close to its chest on what to expect next, Xbox boss Phil Spencer says that you won’t see a successor to Xbox Scorpio – it’s souped up Xbox One due next year, any time soon.

“I don’t have this desire to every two years have a new console on the shelf”, he explained to Game Informer. “That’s not part of the console business model, and it doesn’t actually help us. The best customer I have is somebody who buys the original Xbox and just buys all the games. That’s the best customer for us in terms of the pure financials of it […]I’m not trying to turn consoles into the graphics card market.

(Also see:Xbox Scorpio Games to Run in Native 4K Resolution: Microsoft)

While it’s heartening to know that at least one console maker isn’t interested in turning the console space into something akin to the graphics card or smartphone markets with new models released frequently, Spencer claims he has no idea on what after Scorpio:

(Also see:Xbox Scorpio has an Obvious Power Advantage over PS4 Pro: Microsoft)

“To be completely honest, I don’t know what the next console is past Scorpio. We’re thinking about it. We’re looking at consumer trends and what the right performance spec and price would be, and [asking ourselves], ‘Can we hit something that has a meaningful performance characteristic that a gamer would care about?'”

Tags: Phil Spencer, Xbox One, Xbox One S, Xbox Scorpio, Project Scorpio, Microsoft
[“source-ndtv”]

Apple’s iOS 10 Beta Hints at Lots of Change – Not All of It Welcome

Apple's iOS 10 Beta Hints at Lots of Change - Not All of It Welcome

Apple is releasing a new version of its mobile operating system this fall, bringing the company up to a nice round number: iOS 10.

Ahead of launch, Apple is allowing anyone to test the software and give their feedback. First, I would not recommend that most people download this beta. Bugs are par for the course with all early software and could try the patience of those who don’t test imperfect things for fun. Many apps behave strangely with the beta since it hasn’t gotten its final polish yet.

That’s particularly true with this system. After a week with the beta, I’m confused about where Apple is heading with this update. It’s true that this build is, by definition, not ready for primetime and it would be unfair to fully review it. But it is still basically the same software that will hit millions of devices in just a few months and is just not as good as I’ve come to expect from Apple.

(Also see: How to Download and Install iOS 10 Beta on iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch)
There are many things I like. Apple has enhanced the Health functions to track sleep, among other new data. This system also lets you erase icons for some of the pre-installed apps (Tips, Watch, etc.) that many relegate to a permanently unused folder on their phones anyway.

Apple has also done some work on Messages, that makes it easier to send music, sketches, .gifs and photos. You can also send very large emoji. It’s sort of silly, but definitely fun.

The features are welcome changes. That can’t be said of other tweaks to the system overall, which seem to move away from the logical, simple design that make Apple stand out in the first place.

Many menus and navigation screens have gained extra panels in iOS 10, which have the effect of making each individual pane more simple, but complicate navigation overall. For example, the control center that appears when you swipe up from the bottom of the screen now has two sections — one with the Bluetooth, brightness and other familiar panel controls, plus a second just for music and volume.

These controls used to be on one screen, and there was no real reason to add a second. In fact, it took me a couple days to even realize the volume control was there at all.

These menus look a lot like the bubbly, almost empty layout you see on notifications for the Apple Watch. But sparse design makes sense on that small of a screen. While it’s understandable – even admirable – for Apple to want to unify the look of its systems across devices, it hasn’t been done in a user-focused way. That’s unusual for Apple.

(Also see: iOS 10 Features: 10 Big Ones Unveiled at WWDC 2016)

Apple has also changed the lock screen so that richer notifications can be accessed on their own screen with a simple swipe to the right, in addition to being accessible by dragging down from the top. You can also search for apps from this new section on the lock screen. That’s a win for convenience, but not for privacy. I changed the widgets that I put in my notifications screen because they felt more exposed in the new layout.

Others may want to turn off the ability to get the notification center on their lock screen altogether, through settings in the Touch ID and Passcode menu.

Many of these complaints may sound like small cosmetic gripes, and admittedly some of them are. Others, though, are more serious. And all illustrate my genuine puzzlement about why Apple is changing the feel of a system that has helped propel it to such great heights.

There’s still time for the company to squash the bugs and refine the software — something that will definitely happen. But if the rough sketch of the beta is anything to go by, users will have to prepare for changes that may confuse them once the fall comes.

© 2016 The Washington Post

Tags: Apple, Mobile Operating System, iOS, iOS 10, iPad, iPhone
[“source-smallbiztrends”]

Union ministers asked not to carry mobile phones during cabinet meetings

The move assumes significance as security agencies have raised doubts over the security of mobile phones which are prone to hacking. Photo: BloombergThe move assumes significance as security agencies have raised doubts over the security of mobile phones which are prone to hacking. Photo: Bloomberg

New Delhi: In a move aimed at checking any possibility of leakage of information through hacking of communication devices, Union ministers have been asked not to carry mobile phones in cabinet meetings.

The cabinet secretariat has recently issued a directive to private secretaries of the concerned ministers in this regard.

“It has been decided that smartphones/mobile phones will henceforth not be permitted inside the meeting venues of cabinet/cabinet committees,” it said.

The private secretaries have been asked to appropriately brief the ministers on this. The move assumes significance as security agencies have raised doubts over the security of mobile phones which are prone to hacking.

Official sources said the measure will ensure that the discussion, which is mostly sensitive, during cabinet meetings remains secret. Such an instruction has been issued from the government for the first time.

Earlier, ministers were allowed to bring mobile phones with them which would be kept either on silent mode or preferably switched off.

[“Source-Gadgets”]

Facebook CEO Says Group Will Not Become a Media Company

Facebook CEO Says Group Will Not Become a Media Company

Facebook CEO Says Group Will Not Become a Media Company
Facebook will not become a media company, its founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg said on Monday, telling students the firm would remain a technology platform.

An increasing number of users are turning to social media networks, such as Facebook and Twitter, to find their news, but Zuckerberg said his firm had no ambitions to become a content provider.

“No, we are a tech company, not a media company,” said Zuckerberg, after a young Italian asked him whether Facebook intended to become a news editor.

While acknowledging the role Facebook has in supplying users with news through their connections and stressing the advantages of obtaining information from different parts of the world, Zuckerberg said Facebook was “a technology company, we build the tools, we do not produce any content”.

“The world needs news companies, but also technology platforms, like what we do, and we take our role in this very seriously,” he said, speaking from Rome’s Luiss university.

Earlier on Monday, Zuckerberg and his wife Priscilla Chan had a private audience with Pope Francis. It was the latest in a string of meetings the pontiff has held with Silicon Valley leaders, including Apple CEO Tim Cook and Alphabet’s boss Eric Schmidt.
Zuckerberg said he gave the Argentine pontiff a model of Aquila, Facebook’s lightweight solar-powered drone aimed at beaming lasers to extend internet access to places that have yet to be connected.

“We … discussed the importance of connecting people, especially in parts of the world without internet access,” Zuckerberg posted on his personal Facebook profile after the meeting.

Zuckerberg also on Monday met Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi, who is pushing to upgrade Italy’s limited internet infrastructure.

© Thomson Reuters 2016

Share a screenshot and win Samsung smartphones worth Rs. 90,000 by participating in the #BrowseFaster contest.

Tags: Facebook, Social, trending, Mark Zuckerberg, Apps, News

[“Source-Gadgets”]

Reserve Bank may not be able to meet inflation target: IMF paper

The IMF working paper assumes significance as the RBI has recently implemented an inflation-targeting regime that requires it to hit publicly announced targets for retail inflation, based on consumer price index (CPI).The IMF working paper assumes significance as the RBI has recently implemented an inflation-targeting regime that requires it to hit publicly announced targets for retail inflation, based on consumer price index (CPI).

New Delhi: An International Monetary Fund (IMF) paper has raised question marks over the ability of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to target inflation through monetary measures, saying the size of formal financial sector is small in India and may undermine the effectiveness of interest rate changes on aggregate demand.

The IMF working paper assumes significance as the RBI has recently implemented an inflation-targeting regime that requires it to hit publicly announced targets for retail inflation, based on consumer price index (CPI).

Under the new dispensation, RBI will be required to meet retail inflation target of 4%, plus or minus 2% over the next 5 years. The interest rate from next policy, due on 4 October, will be decided by a six-member monetary policy committee (MPC) instead of the central bank governor.

“In the absence of effective and reliable links between the policy instruments controlled by the RBI and aggregate demand in the Indian economy the public may lack confidence that the RBI is able to deliver on its announced inflation target, making the target more difficult (and costly) to achieve,” said the IMF working paper—’Monetary Transmission in Developing Countries: Evidence from India’.

It said that careful studies of the effectiveness of monetary transmission in low-income countries have often found monetary policy effects that are counterintuitive, weak, and/or unreliable.

“On the other hand, the small size of the formal financial sector in India would tend to undermine the effects on bank lending rates on aggregate demand,” said the paper authored by Prachi Mishra, Peter Montiel and Rajeswari Sengupta.

According to the paper, in case of India, the response of the exchange rate to monetary policy shocks is in the right direction but the magnitude is very small. “The implication is that any effects of monetary policy on aggregate demand in India are more likely to operate through the trade balance than through interest-sensitive components of aggregate of aggregate demand, but any such effects are likely to be weak,” it said.

The paper noted that there is no reason to expect that mechanisms of monetary transmission in low-income countries would be similar to those that have been found to operate in high-income ones.

[“Source-Livemint”]

Pokemon Go Fans Told Not to Play in US Holocaust Museum

Pokemon Go Fans Told Not to Play in US Holocaust Museum

The US Holocaust Memorial Museum has told Pokemon Go fans not to play the popular new mobile game in its premises, describing it as “extremely inappropriate” in a memorial dedicated to the victims of Nazism.

The game involves using a mobile device to find and capture virtual Pokemon characters at real life locations, including apparently inside the Washington-based museum.

The idea of players roaming its halls, eyes glued to phones in search of the computerized figures, shocked many after an image was posted online showing one of the characters located outside the doors to the museum’s Helena Rubinstein Auditorium.

(Also see:  Pokemon Go Craze Crashes Servers, Draws Police Warnings)

“We are attempting to have the museum removed from the game,” the museum’s communications director, Andy Hollinger, said in a statement.

The museum encourages visitors to use their mobile phones to share and engage with exhibits while visiting, he added.

“Technology can be an important learning tool, but this game falls far outside of our educational and memorial mission,” Hollinger said.

x

During a visit to the museum on Tuesday, a Reuters reporter saw various visitors using phones to take photos or send messages, but no one obviously playing games. That included the area outside the Helena Rubinstein Auditorium, which features recorded testimonies from Jews who survived the gas chambers.

(Also see: Pokemon Go Is Responsible for These Real Life Weird and Scary Things)

Niantic, the game’s creator, did not respond to requests for comment about the museum’s complaint.

Interest in Pokemon Go has surged since its release last week. The game was the most downloaded free app on Apple’s app store, while Nintendo shares surged nearly 25 percent on Monday for their biggest daily gains ever based on its success.

On Tuesday, a Democratic US senator asked Niantic to clarify the game’s data privacy protections, amid concerns it was unnecessarily collecting lots of user data.

© Thomson Reuters 2016

Tags: Android, Apple, Apps, Gaming, iOS, Niantic, Nintendo, Pokemon, Pokemon Go

 

[“Source-Gadgets”]

Cops to Pokemon Fans: Do Not Come Looking for Pikachu in Our Police Station

Cops to Pokemon Fans: Do Not Come Looking for Pikachu in Our Police Station

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Nintendo’s Pokemon Go was launched on Wednesday
  • It is currently available in Japan, Australia, New Zealand and US
  • It is an augmented reality game to catch Pokemons

The new smartphone app Pokemon Go begins with a warning screen. For a video game, it is an unusual sort of disclaimer. It is not a parental heads-up about critter-on-critter violence. Nor is it an echo of the recommendation from the American Academy of Pediatrics that kids should limit their gaming to about two hours daily.

Pokemon Go simply wants its players to avoid physical trauma.

Pokemon Go is a departure from previous iterations of the fantasy bug-collecting sim. Played on a smartphone screen in lieu of a Game Boy or other handheld console, Pokemon Go uses cameras and GPS to construct an augmented reality in which collectible 3D monsters float over physical locales.

To collect these digital critters you have get off the couch, get outside and track them down.

A land-dwelling Pikachu might hang out at the base of, say, the Washington Monument, while trainers (the term for those who play the game) might have to trot over to the Lincoln Memorial’s reflecting pool to capture the fishy creature Magikarp. Digital Pokemon infest buildings, too. The bullish Tauros rampaged through The Washington Post’s break room early Thursday morning.

(Also see:  Playing Pokemon Go in India? Here’s Everything You Need to Know)

The team behind Pokemon Go – developers Niantic Labs and video game giant Nintendo – is concerned you might walk off a bridge, for instance, while you are engrossed in a real-world hunt for the digital critters. Recognizing that the app, which launched in the United States late Wednesday, may encourage the sort of obliviousness that comes when noses are buried in smartphones, other groups began issuing their own warnings, too.

So far, the admonitions have been cheeky: Pokemon Go depicts danger as a cartoon sea serpent. On Facebook, an Australian police force asked Pokemon Go trainers not to burst into stations despite the urge to collect ’em all.

(Also see:  How to Download, Install, and Play Pokemon Go Right Now)

“The novelty of seeing a Pokemon superimposed onto your sidewalk is delightful,” wrote The Post’s Hayley Tsukayama, who recently reviewed an early version of the game. (Though certain features, she said, like monster battles, left something to be desired.) Pokemon Go has the potential to be immensely popular, as it is Nintendo’s first smartphone app to showcase the 20-year-old franchise. The early interest, at least, seems promising; it had been downloaded in the United States at least 50 thousand times within the first 12 hours, according to a ticker at the Google Play store.

Pokemon Go’s interface, akin to Google Maps, is littered with Pokestops – specific landmarks where players collect game-boosting items. That the Darwin Police Station is one such landmark prompted a Facebook message from Australia’s Northern Territory Police, Fire and Emergency Services: “For those budding Pokemon Trainers out there using Pokemon Go — whilst the Darwin Police Station may feature as a Pokestop, please be advised that you don’t actually have to step inside in order to gain the pokeballs,” the agency wrote.

A representative for the Northern Territory Police, Fire and Emergency services told The Post by phone that one of its officers downloaded the game, and then recommended the Facebook message. It was a bit of a joke, she said, as no one has yet to enter the Darwin Police Station in pursuit of Poke balls or Pikachu.

But players would be wise to exercise caution in their quest to be a Pokemon master. Niantic Labs pioneered its location-based gaming technology with “Ingress,” an area-control mobile game in which players capture portals (similar to Pokemon Go’s Pokestops and gyms). “Ingress” has attracted players by the millions, according to a Niantic blog post from Wednesday, and some “have literally traveled to the ends of the earth” to capture portals.

As “Ingress” grew in popularity, some players admitted to taking risks like playing in cars, near sinkholes or too close to bicycle lanes. The game has been associated with at least one death. A 48-year-old Irish man lost his life while on a nocturnal mission to capture a portal near a pier last September, according to a Dublin inquest.

“The pier is open at both sides, the surface was uneven, it was night time, there are no lights, it was in the course of this game Ingress,” the coroner said, according to the Irish Times. Niantic Labs has since removed the portal near the pier.

As the Australian police organization pointed out on Facebook, players should navigate augmented worlds just as carefully as vanilla realities. “That Sandshrew isn’t going anywhere fast,” they wrote. “Stay safe and catch ’em all.”

© 2016 The Washington Post

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Tags: 3D Gaming, Android, Apple, Apps, Augmented Reality AR, Gaming, iOS, Niantic, Nintendo, Pokemon Go

 

[“Source-Gadgets”]