A post-Glasto buzz of activity has gripped Team Trusted as the team filtered back from the mega-fest, eager to dig into this week’s wide array of tech news.
The sun has been shining, we’ve had a load of new kit to play with (see the below video for us having a hands on with the 2019 HP Envy 13 and the Dell Inspiron Chromebook 14 7000 2-1) and the mood is high.
Anyway, enough of Tom and I horsing about on video. Let’s get on with the news, shall we?
Nintendo Switch it up
The long rumoured new Nintendo Switch Mini is out of the bag now. We got a name and a rough look at the dimensions courtesy of a leaked consumer package for the Silicone Glove case for a “Mini Switch 2”.
Alan Martin wrote about it for us just this morning if you want the skinny on Ninty’s forthcoming handheld.
It actually looks pretty good. Several previous rumours had suggested that we’d see a smaller system with Joy-Cons attached to the machine, and that it would ship without a dock, which seems to be what we’re getting. However, despite the smaller body, we’re not losing a lot of screen real estate, so it could be a cracking option for those looking for a smaller Switch.
Better yet, when it does launch — supposedly this Autumn — it will still be compatible with docks, making this a great ‘second Switch’, if you’re that way inclined.
However, the rumours that we’ll get a fancier Switch from Nintendo, with updated hardware and an OLED screen, are still out there. Here’s hoping for a double Switch surprise this Autumn, huh?
The Netflix experiment
Netflix is, reportedly, going to be a little more careful about how it spends its money moving forwards – a revelation that’s landed the same week as the big-budget third season of Stranger Things, a Netflix original, has landed on our small screens.
Reports have alleged that Netflix’s top dog for content, Ted Sarandos, has recently met with people internally to ask them to stop spending cash.
Netflix has dropped a real chunk of change on some of its shows. It’d be easy to point the finger at their critically well-received Marvel collaboration, but that barely moves the needle, costing something in the range of $40m a season.
Meanwhile, The Crown cost some $130m a season, while Marco Polo — a TV show I genuinely can’t remember even hearing about — cost Netflix $90m and was met by middling reviews. Not that it stopped Netflix renewing it for a second, albeit final, season
The company is expected to drop $12bn on content through 2019, and indeed their spending has created something of a running joke, with Netflix buying just about any movie and TV show they can to fill out their content library.
With competition from Disney’s streaming service and Apple’s own Apple TV+, slowing down on new and original content could indicate that the streaming war is going to be too close to call.
It’s been a bad week for key merchants G2A. It began when G2A was accused of taking paid adverts on Google that were making its services pop up over the developer and publishers’ own.
This lead to Mike Rose, the founder of No More Robots, a publisher behind the games Hypnospace Outlaw and Descenders, to say: “Please, if you’re going to buy a game from G2A, just pirate it instead! Genuinely!”
I wrote about it! I wrote about it so hard that I used an exclamation mark! Video games are only made because of the developers that choose to make them, and if a company has come together to try and cash in on developers’ work without giving them a cut, it’s understandable that the developers would want to speak out about it.
G2A has issued a statement promising to pay developers 10 times the money they lost on chargebacks if they can prove the loss. It also told Trusted it “would appreciate if our response could be published in order for the readers to have a chance to make up their own minds, based on as wide a perspective as possible.”
In its post, G2A said that none of the developers involved had ever contacted them directly. But when pressed on the matter the company clarified none of the developers had tried to contact G2A recently and that some correspondence may have been lost due to a member of the team leaving.
G2A added that contacting them is not enough, and that developers should expect to try and solve the problems rather than ask it to remove all of the games from sale.
All-in-all it’s bit of a mess.