Today’s cache | Epic Games announces Unreal Engine 5, Aarogya Setu for JioPhones, and more

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Today's cache is your daily download of the top 5 updates from the world of technology.

Epic Games has unveiled its stunning demo of Unreal Engine 5. The game scene looks almost like a film CG.

For those of us who use multiple tabs in Google Chrome, here’s some welcome change to organising your tabs.

India’s IT Ministry has launched a version of Aarogya Setu for JioPhones.

In the US, President Trump extends the ban on Huawei for another year through May 2021.

Lastly, Amazon’s lawsuit against an allegedly widespread tech support scam.

Grouping tabs on Google Chrome

We’ve all been there -- launched several tabs on Google Chrome browser, and not knowing which one is where.

To make the tab management easy, Chrome has introduced a new tab groups feature, now available in Chrome Beta.

With just a single right click, users can group tabs and label them with a custom name and colour. After the tabs are grouped, users can reorder and move them on the tab strip.

“We’ve been testing out tab groups for several months now, and we’re finding new ways to stay organized,” Edward Jung, UX Engineer at Chrome said in a blog post.

Based on Google’s research, some Chrome users like to group their tabs by topic. For example, if someone is working on several projects, or looking through multiple shopping sites to review products, they can organise their tabs under specific topics. Other users tend to group their tabs by the urgency of tasks.

Similar to regular tabs, tab groups can saved, closed and re-opened in Chrome.

Epic Games announces Unreal Engine 5

Epic Games on Wednesday unveiled its next version of its game engine, the Unreal Engine 5.

The stunning demo of the new iteration of the Unreal Engine 5 was run on PlayStation 5. The game achieves photorealism on par with film computer graphics and real life.

The ‘Lumen in the Land of Nanite’ demo previews tow of the new core technologies that will debut in the Unreal Engine 5.

The virtual Nanite allows artists to create as much detail as can be seen with the naked eye. The film-quality virtualisation comprises hundreds of millions of polygon that can be imported directly into the game.

The Lumen technology is a dynamic illumination solution that reacts to scene and light changes in real-time. Designers and artists can create more dynamic scenes using Lumen by changing the sun angle for time of the day, turning on a flashlight, or blowing a hole in the ceiling.

“We’re designing for forward compatibility, so you can get started with next-gen development now in UE4 and move your projects to UE5 when ready,” Epic Games said in a statement.

Meity launches contact tracing app for JioPhones

The Ministry of Information and Technology has rolled out a version of its contact-tracing app for 5 million JioPhones, the devices sold by Reliance’s telecom unit, Reuters reported.

In an effort to increase the reach of the Bluetooth-enabled Aarogya Setu app, the government is rolling out this version of the app for the low-cost JioPhones.

The Bluetooth and GPS-based Aarogya Setu app was launched in April to contain the spread of coronavirus. The app alerts users who may have come in contact with COVID-19 patients.

Since its launch, the app has been downloaded by 100 million Indians. It is available on Google Play and App Store.

Trump extends ban on Huawei

Last year, US President Donald Trump issued an executive order barring American companies from doing business with Huawei. His top most concern was that the Chinese phone maker’s equipment posed a national security threat.

On Wednesday, Trump extended that order for another year through May 2021 citing national emergency, TheVerge reported.

The order, via the International Emergency Economic Powers Act, gives the President authority to regulate commerce in the country.

Since bringing Huawei under an economic blacklist, the US Commerce Department has allowed it to buy some American-made goods in a bid to reduce disruption for its customers.

This temporary allowance by US Commerce Department doesn’t let Huawei work with companies like Google on new devices.

Scammers target Alexa and Echo device users

Amazon has filed a suit in US federal court in Seattle last week against an alleged tech support scam, Cnet reported.

In a civil lawsuit, Amazon said an international ring in Washington State and India have developed a scheme to draw users who are setting up their new Alexa devices.

Once the users download a fake Amazon-branded app, they are prompted to connect to a customer support number and are told they’d be charged $150 for protection plans.

“Amazon works hard to protect our customers, and the blatant misuse of our brand to deceive unsuspecting customers setting up their new device is appalling,” an Amazon spokesman said in a statement.

Two apps and most of the websites mentioned in Amazon’s lawsuit were deactivated as of Wednesday. This means, much of the alleged scam may have already been shut down.

Amazon offers Alexa set up for free through its own Alexa mobile app. The name of the developer for that app is AMZN Mobile LLC on the Apple App Store and Amazon Mobile LLC in the Google Play Store.

Instructions for setting up are also included in Echo devices Amazon sells.

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Printable version | May 26, 2020 10:02:42 AM |

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