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Weekly Bytes | Starlink’s availability in India, Fortnite’s possible return to iPhone, and more

Musk says Starlink could be available in India next year. | Picture by special arrangement.  

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Musk says Starlink could be available in India next year

SpaceX founder Elon Musk recently tweeted that Starlink’s Internet service could be available in India next year. Replying to tweet on Starlink’s availability in the country, Elon wrote, “As soon as we get regulatory approval. Hopefully, around middle of next year.” The company recently started its “Better Than Nothing Beta” test. According to Musk, the aerospace company will be sending several thousand more Starlink beta participation invitations this week. In a separate development, Canada-based space company NorthStar Earth & Space is addressing the issue of space debris.

Fortnite may return to iPhone via Nvidia

Epic Games’ popular gaming title ‘Fortnite’ could make a return to iPhones and iPads via Nvidia’s cloud gaming service, BBC reported. A version of Nvidia’s GeForce Now, will run the game in Apple’s Safari web browser. The availability of the game via the cloud service to Apple users has not been confirmed by Nvidia, however the company is expected to bring it later this year, the report stated. Fortnite was removed from the App Store after the game’s developer, Epic, tried to bypass Apple’s payment system. In October, Epic Games’ request to restore Fortnite post the App Store ban was turned by a U.S. District Judge.

Yahoo to discontinue auto email forwarding

Yahoo Mail’s automatic email forwarding feature will be discontinued from January 1, 2021, for the free Yahoo Mail accounts, according to a post in the company’s support page. The feature allows Yahoo users to send a copy of incoming messages to a third-party email account. Users can upgrade to Yahoo Mail Pro or subscribe to Access + Forwarding to use the auto forwarding feature, Yahoo noted. Recently, Yahoo had also said it will shut down its Yahoo Groups on December 15.

NASA celebrates 20 years of continuous human presence in Space

NASA celebrated 20 years of continuous human presence aboard the International Space Station (ISS), on November 2. The orbiting laboratory was constructed in a collaborative effort by 15 nations. According to NASA, 240 people from 19 countries have visited the ISS, which measures 357 feet end to end with a mass of nearly 4.2 lakh kg, in its current configuration. Astronauts have conducted more than 227 spacewalks since 1998. In 24 hours, the space station makes 16 orbits of Earth, traveling through 16 sunrises and sunsets. Last week, NASA astronaut Kate Rubins cast her vote for the U.S. Presidential Election from the ISS.

TikTok leads non-gaming app revenue globally in October

TikTok was the top grossing non-gaming app globally in October 2020 with more than $115 million (about ₹ 851 crore) in user spending, over six times its revenue in October last year, according to a report by research firm Sensor Tower. About 86% of the revenue was from Douyin in China, followed by 8% from the U.S. YouTube took the second spot earning more than $94 million (about ₹ 696 crore) in gross revenue in October for a year on year growth of 58%. In another update, TikTok signed a deal with Sony Music to expand its music library.

Samsung launches SmartThings Find

Samsung launched a new service called SmartThings Find, to help Samsung users easily locate their Galaxy devices. It uses Bluetooth Low Energy and ultra-wideband technologies to locate select Galaxy tablets, smartphones, smartwatches and earbuds. The service can be used to locate a missing device even if it’s offline, Samsung noted in a blog post. The SmartThings app offers integrated map directions and the ability to ‘ring’ a lost device to help users easily locate their device. In another development, Samsung, and Stanford have collaborated to develop OLED display with 10,000 PPI resolution.

Spotify’s direct streaming on Apple Watch

Spotify has introduced direct streaming on certain Apple Watch models for its premium users. People using an Apple Watch Series 3 or later, on watchOS 6.0+, along with a cellular connection or Wi-Fi will be able to use the music streaming service from their wrist. The users also need to be on the latest version of Spotify on their iPhone. Spotify users will be able to control their music, use Spotify Connect, and Siri while using the app from their Apple Watch. In another update, Apple's video creation app now supports vertical video.

Streaming on next-gen Xbox consoles

Microsoft has announced that its next generation Xbox consoles will support streaming apps like Netflix, Disney+, HBO Max, Spotify, YouTube, YouTube TV, Amazon Prime Video, Hulu, Peacock, Vudu, Twitch, Sky Go, and Apple TV starting November 10. In another update, the software giant has also optimised Sea of Thieves for the Xbox Series X and Series S. The game will be available to all players with Xbox Game Pass at the launch of both consoles, and also via Smart Delivery. Recently, Microsoft also added live captions with speaker attribution in Teams.

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Printable version | Dec 2, 2020 7:31:00 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/sci-tech/technology/weekly-bytes-starlinks-availability-in-india-fortnites-possible-return-to-iphone-and-more/article33046238.ece

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