Weather scientists are predicting a total of 16 significant storms during the Atlantic hurricane season, along with four major storms of category 3 to 5. The four largest storms will produce winds of at least 111 mph, which is more than enough to cause widespread damage to coastal cities. The forecast, which was published by the Colorado State University Department of Atmospheric Science, covers the season that begins on June 1st and ends on November 30th. Visit BGR’s homepage for more stories.
2020 has already thrown us a real curveball with the novel coronavirus pandemic, dramatically changing the way many of us live our lives. But if you thought we’d catch a break in the latter half of the year, you better think again, because forecasters are now predicting an above-average hurricane season in the Atlantic, with at least four major storms of Category 3 to 5, and a total of sixteen named storms.
Scientists can use past years and weather models to get a rough idea of how each new hurricane season will play out. In this case, the variables appear to favor an increase in hurricane activity over the average. The forecast covers the period from June 1st through November 30th.
“We anticipate that the 2020 Atlantic basin hurricane season will have above-normal activity,” the researchers write. “Current warm neutral ENSO (El Niño-Southern Oscillation) conditions appear likely to transition to cool neutral ENSO or potentially even weak La Niña conditions by this summer/fall. Sea surface temperatures averaged across the tropical Atlantic are somewhat above normal. Our Atlantic Multi-decadal Oscillation index is below its long-term average; however, most of the tropical Atlantic is warmer than normal.”
These factors, the researchers say, mean we’re in for a rough year of hurricanes. “We anticipate an above-average probability for major hurricanes making landfall along the continental United States coastline and in the Caribbean. As is the case with all hurricane seasons, coastal residents are reminded that it only takes one hurricane making landfall to make it an active season for them. They should prepare the same for every season, regardless of how much activity is predicted.”
So, we’re likely to see four major hurricanes of at least category 3, and a total of 16 storms significant enough to be given names. That’s a significant burden for coastal communities to bear, but with some incredibly devastating storms still in the nation’s rearview mirror, preparation will certainly be of utmost importance. We’ll obviously have to wait and see exactly how accurate the predictions are, but it’s never too early to start looking ahead and forming a plan if you happen to be in an area where hurricanes regularly hit.
Image Source: AP/REX/Shutterstock
Mike Wehner has reported on technology and video games for the past
If you’ve been around tech publications today, then it should be pretty obvious that there is quite the stir going on. Mostly, due to Intel’s release of the 10th Gen Core Comet Lake-H CPUs and Nvidia giving us RTX Super cards on mobile. The two announcements were followed by a flood of new and upgraded laptop models to premiere the new chips. We already covered Razer and Asus and their unorthodox offers, but here come a few more.
MSI has a solid reputation to uphold when in comes to cramming a lot of power inside sleek compact bodies. The new GS66 Stealth seems to live up nicely to that reputation. With a sandblasted body, and a total weight of just 2.1kg, including a 99.9W hour battery, pushing right against the legal limit for taking on a plane, it is certainly impressive if not exactly an ultrabook. That battery capacity is a major improvement over the GS65 Stealth generation. And MSI hasn’t skipped on the bells and whistles either, like the excellent SteelSeries RGB keyboard or Thunderbolt 3.
MSI GS66 Stealth
In the CPU department, you can get either then new 10-th Gen Intel Core i7-10750H, or the Core i9-10980HK. The former packing 6 cores and 12 threads, while the latter – a whopping 8 cores and 16 threads, with an insane max single core turbo of 5.3 GHz. Our first-hand experience with the last GS65 Stealth and its 6-core 9th-gen i7 would suggest that the lower tier might make more sense here, since we doubt even MIS’s advanced Cooler Boost Trinity+ simply will be able to keep up with this 14nm Intel beast. A concern apparently MSI shares to at least some degree, since it decided to opt for the Max-Q version of Nvidia’s new RTX 2070 Super and 2080 Super GPU’s for the GS66 Stealth. You can also get the older RTX 2070 Max-Q to save a few bucks or the still capable RTX 2060. The latter is the only non-Max-Q, full-fat card that fits in the laptop’s chassis.
You get a choice of three panels on the GS66 – a 144Hz IPS unit, a 240H one or one of those new 300Hz screens. Resolution is 1080p regardless of refresh rate chosen. The MSI GS66 Stealth is now up for pre-order for $1,599 and will be shipping on April 15.
Alternatively, if you aren’t quite as concerned about weight and prefer the over-designed gaming aesthetics, there is the GE line, which got the new 2.4kg GE66 Raider. Visually, it’s quite a departure from the Stealth, with plenty of harsher angles and a huge MSI Mystic Light panoramic RGB light bar on the front. Not too much difference between the two in terms of power, though. You get the choice between the same two 10th Gen i7 and i9 CPUs, 16GB RAM in base, upgradable up to 32GB, 512GB base and up to 1TB of NVMe storage.
NEW YORK, NY APRIL 2, 2020: Penske Media Corporation (PMC) announced today its strategic investment into the sports business industry with the launch of Sportico, a high-quality digital content platform providing fair and dynamic sports industry news, data, information, strategies, leadership, insight and live media. The company, whose name Sportico is a portmanteau linking “sport” and “company,” plans to become the global media and publishing leader in the business of sports.
Sportico will leverage PMC’s industry leading infrastructure and best practices for digital publishing, news gathering, research, data, live media and events.
“We are truly excited about becoming the preeminent information destination for the $500 billion sports industry,” said PMC Chairman and CEO Jay Penske. “This launch is consistent with Penske Media Corporation’s long record of success in business to business and consumer publishing ventures. Sports enables us to complement our technology, entertainment, art, music, fashion, media and lifestyle properties.”
Heading the venture as President and CEO will be veteran sports and entertainment executive Dick Glover. Joining Glover will be award-winning sports business reporter Scott Soshnick, who will serve as the platform’s Editor-in-Chief and Head of Content.
Penske added, “There couldn’t be a better team than Dick and Scott to launch Sportico and provide the leadership needed to create a successful digital media business. The strength of PMC’s financial standing allows us to be in perfect position to launch and rapidly expand this new venture at this unique time.”
Glover’s background includes three decades’ experience in senior level positions at global brands such as ESPN, ABC, The Walt Disney Company and Nascar. He was Executive Vice President, Internet and New Media, for Walt Disney managing ABC and ESPN’s Internet businesses including ESPN.com, ABC.com, and ABCNEWS.com. Prior to that, he served as EVP, Content at ESPN, overseeing its domestic programming and rights acquisitions across all ESPN networks and platforms launching and managing ESPN.com and ESPN The Magazine as well as supervising ESPN’s retail, licensing and out of home businesses. In addition, he served as NASCAR’s VP of Broadcasting and New Media, where he collaborated with Judd Apatow, Will Ferrell and Adam McKay to produce the comedy “Talladega Nights.” Glover’s success with start-ups, entertainment and production is highlighted by his recent years as the founding President and CEO of the popular comedy digital platform Funny or Die and President and CEO of Mandalay Sports Media.
“I am honoured to have the opportunity of joining one of the world’s leading digital media and information services company and launch Sportico to the sports business industry,” said Glover. “Having the ability to work side by side with Scott and the Penske team will allow us to create a first-class operation and build a successful business.”
Soshnick, who has spent the past 27 years at Bloomberg News, has established himself as the one of the nation’s leading and most respected sports business reporters. Most recently, he was responsible for spearheading Bloomberg’s sports business coverage and co-hosted a Business of Sports radio show and self-created podcast. During his tenure, Scott
Tesla delivered 88,400 vehicles last quarter, marking the best “first quarter performance” the company has ever had.Tesla’s Model 3 was once again the company’s most popular vehicle, with year over year deliveries increasing by nearly 50%.Model S and Model X deliveries, year over year, essentially remained unchanged.Visit BGR’s homepage for more stories.
Tesla earlier today announced that it produced nearly 103,000 vehicles during the first quarter of 2020. Meanwhile, deliveries for the quarter checked in at 88,400. Put simply, these numbers are remarkable, with Tesla noting that it represents the “best ever first quarter performance” in company history.
As to the delivery breakdown across the company’s product line, it shouldn’t come as much of a surprise that the Model 3 accounted for the vast majority of deliveries throughout the quarter. Specifically, Model S and Model X deliveries cumulatively checked in at 12,200 units while Model 3 and Model Y deliveries checked in at 76,200 units. And seeing as how Model Y deliveries didn’t even begin until two weeks ago, it’s clear that the Model 3 certainly anchored Tesla’s performance this past quarter.
To put Tesla’s quarter into context, consider that the company during the same quarter a year-ago delivered 63,000 vehicles. That’s an impressive gain of nearly 15% year over year.
Incidentally, Model S and Model X sales during Q1 of 2019 came in at 12,100. In effect, Model S and Model X sales were stagnant year over year. With that said, it’s abundantly clear is that the popularity of Tesla’s Model 3 is what’s taking the company to new heights of success and profitability. Year over year, Model 3 deliveries jumped by almost 50% thanks to strong demand and various improvements Tesla made to the Model 3 production line.
Tesla’s press release reads in part:
PALO ALTO, Calif., April 02, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — In the first quarter, we produced almost 103,000 vehicles and delivered approximately 88,400 vehicles. This is our best ever first quarter performance.
Model Y production started in January and deliveries began in March, significantly ahead of schedule. Additionally, our Shanghai factory continued to achieve record levels of production, despite significant setbacks.
Our net income and cash flow results will be announced along with the rest of our financial performance when we announce Q1 earnings. Our delivery count should be viewed as slightly conservative, as we only count a car as delivered if it is transferred to the customer and all paperwork is correct. Final numbers could vary by up to 0.5% or more. Tesla vehicle deliveries represent only one measure of the company’s financial performance and should not be relied on as an indicator of quarterly financial results, which depend on a variety of factors, including the cost of sales, foreign exchange movements and mix of directly leased vehicles.
As referenced above, Tesla makes a point of noting that production at its Shanghai factory in China is going incredibly well. What remains to be seen, going forward, is how the
Honda will launch two new EVs for model year 2024 in the US and Canada, and they’ll both be based on GM’s EV platform. According to GM EVP Doug Parks, the automakers have teamed up to achieve an “all-electric future” and to deliver “a profitable EV business through increased scale and capacity utilization.” Since they’ll still be Honda vehicles, the Japanese automaker will be in charge of its interior and exterior designs. They’ll be manufactured at GM’s plants in North America, though, since they’ll be using GM technology. In addition, they’ll also feature GM’s OnStar safety and security services.
A report from 2019 said Honda is developing a modular EV platform of its own, but it won’t be ready until 2025. Meanwhile, GM’s global EV platform is ready for use and will be the basis for various vehicles by the automaker’s brands, including Chevy and Cadillac. GM’s platform is powered by the company’s Ultium batteries, which can deliver
2020 will be tough for phone makers – analysts at CCS Insight believe that 250 million fewer smartphones will be shipped this year compared to 2019. The expected total for this year is 1.26 billion smartphones, the lowest level in a decade, plus 300 million feature phones.
The effects of the outbreak will be felt the most in Q2, which will see a precipitous 29% drop in combined shipments, but issues will continue to the end of the year and will even affect the holiday sales.
Demand hasn’t died out completely, despite most consumers staying home and the stores being closed. However, companies are dealing with disruptions in the supply chain, so they can’t meet the demand for certain products.
Consumers and businesses are facing financial uncertainties so they will hold off on buying new phones this year. The holiday season is expected to see 3% fewer phones sold compared to 2019.
On a positive note, the market is expected to bounce back quickly. The pent up demand from this year will cause sales numbers to grow 12% next year, according to CCS. The boom will carry over to 2022 when shipments will reach almost 2 billion units.
Makers are looking to bring down the prices of 5G phones. In 2020 they are expected to sell a total of 210 million phones, ten times more than last year. Looking into the near future, most phones sold in 2024 will have 5G connectivity (1.15 billion units).
Xbox head Phil Spencer offered his first reaction to the PlayStation 5 technical deep dive this week, and says he feels “really good about how Series X lines up.”Sony crushed Microsoft this generation, but Spencer says that his team has a “winning plan” ready for the current generation when the Xbox Series X launches this fall.Visit BGR’s homepage for more stories.
The novel coronavirus pandemic has put many of our lives on pause, but many of the high-profile product launches that were set in motion long before the virus turned the world upside-down are still on track for 2020. Few launches are more highly-anticipated than those of the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X, and even in the midst of this crisis, Xbox boss Phil Spencer is still doing press to drum up interest for Microsoft’s next-gen console.
No doubt, I felt really good about how Series X lines up. Now, I think Mark and the team did some really good work on the audio processing that they talked about, their SSD technology is impressive, we like that. We saw the work that they did. But you know, we we took a holistic view on our platform, from CPU, to GPU, to RAM, to throughput velocity architecture, latency, back compat – you know, it took us years to get to this point.
I will definitely have respect for any platform team that’s launching, it just takes a lot of work. But I will say, when we finally saw the public disclosure, I felt even better about the choices that we made on our platform. And I kind of expected that I would.
Spencer is as open and honest an executive as you will find in the industry, but he ascended to his current role when Xbox was stuck in a rut, trying and failing to compete with the generation-winning PS4. The launch of the Xbox Series X will be Spencer’s first real chance to beat Sony at anything, and his confident response speaks volumes about how different he expects this generation to be compared to the last one.
Spencer is also aware that Sony’s decision to undercut the $500 Xbox One with a $400 price tag for the PS4 made a huge difference in 2013, and he doesn’t plan on making the same mistake this holiday season:
You have to set a price target at the beginning for yourselves. And then you kind of roll in as you see the competition come in and start to go to market planning. I feel good about the price that we’re going to be able to get to. I feel good about the price and the performance capabilities that we have with Series X. I feel incredibly strong about the overall package.
You don’t have to rely on rumors or buried code to know that Apple is working on a tracking tag — the company has inadvertently spoiled its plans. Appleosophyspotted an Apple support video (unsurprisingly removed) that hints at offline Find My support for currently unannounced “AirTags.” The clip didn’t provide a peek at the tag or otherwise outline their functionality, although it’s clear they’ll use Bluetooth to reveal the whereabouts of your lost items. They’re believed to use ultra wideband for extra precision.
It’s still not certain when the AirTag will arrive (assuming there’s no change of plans). However, there have been persistent rumors of new budget iPhones launching in the near future. If that happens, it might make sense to unveil the tag at the same time. Not that there will be much of a rush during the pandemic — you probably don’t need a tracker when you’re not even supposed to leave home.
TikTok has been a massive success in the past year and now YouTube is trying to catch the wave. According to The Information, the streaming giant is working on a competitor called “Shorts”. It will allow you to post the short videos on your feed in the app and it is planning to lure them with its rich licensing music library.
The TikTok app
TikTok saw explosive growth over the past few years and the app has been downloaded by over 800 million users across the App Store and Google Play, a 15% increase YoY.
Other companies are also trying to bathe in TikTok’s river of fame. Facebook has already been testing an app called Lasso in some markets like Brazil.
Coronavirus lockdown measures have forced daily life to change, and that means humans are making less noise on Earth. With less traffic and other human movements, seismologists are noticing huge dips in the amount of background seismic noise in their readings. A cleaner reading and less noise could give researchers a rare opportunity to capture particularly accurate data. Visit BGR’s homepage for more stories.
You don’t have to look far to see societal changes brought on by the coronavirus pandemic. Daily life is different these days for a lot of people, and those changes seem to have extended to our planet itself. We’ve already seen examples of how areas with heavy air pollution have cleared up dramatically as people remain home for extended periods of time, and now a new phenomenon has been observed. The Earth is actually quieter.
As Newsweek reports, researchers have noticed a significant decrease in the amount of vibration on Earth’s surface. This “seismic noise” is created by human movements such as driving, construction work, and anything else that might make the ground shake. Well, since the COVID-19 pandemic began, the whole planet is quite a bit quieter.
As the coronavirus pandemic sweeps around the globe, lockdown measures have been put in place in many locations. Even in areas that aren’t under strict lockdowns are urged to avoid social gatherings and stay home if at all possible. With much of the planet playing by these new rules, there’s a lot less background noise on the seismic level.
Stephen Hicks, a seismologist with the Imperial College London, took to Twitter to reveal the results of some seismic data gathering that shows how dramatically things have quieted down. “The #covid19uk lockdown as seen by a seismometer,” Hicks writes. “This week has seen a reduction in average daytime background seismic noise.” He adds that the data “probably reflects less traffic out on the roads.”
The #covid19UK lockdown as seen by a seismometer. This week has seen a reduction in average daytime background seismic noise level (purple line). Data is from @BGSseismology station SWN1 located close to the M4 motorway, so this probably reflects less traffic out on the roads. pic.twitter.com/uNhtKmeCdf
When researchers are taking seismic readings they typically have to account for a steady hum of background noise no matter what. As a species, we tend to make a lot of noise no matter the time of day, but self-isolation and social distancing mandates have managed to change that in a big way. The frequencies that are quieter during this time are typically associated with daily human life, and that means that now could be a great opportunity for scientists to capture some particularly accurate readings without having to worry about so much human static messing up the data.
The various lockdowns and safety measures in place in the United States and many other countries are expected to remain in place for at least another month, if
The free streaming via HBO Now and HBO Go will be available “for a limited time,” and occurs just as HBO’s parent company WarnerMedia announced its new CEO — former Hulu leader Jason Kilar — and prepares to launch its assault on the streaming market with HBO Max. Not a bad time to get some good PR, reach out to potential customers and make sure that every single person knows how great The
The Nest Mini (the replacement for the Home Mini) is 40% off, costing just £30 on Google.com. If you want a bigger speaker, the Home Max is down £50 to £250. If you prefer a smart screen instead, the Nest Hub is half off, you can grab one for £60. The Nest smart thermostats and cameras are discounted by up to £50 too.
The Pixel Slate (Chrome OS tablet) is £300 off, but note that only the Core i5 version is in stock (the i7 one was £550 off, but there are no units left). The Chromecast Ultra got a small £10 discount to £60 and if you don’t care about 4K, the regular Chromecast is down to £25.
Quibi is a new streaming subscription service that launches on April 6th and offers shows and movies in 10-minute “quick bites” that are designed to be watched on mobile devices.T-Mobile is giving away a free year of Quibi (typically $4.99 a month) to its customers through July 7th.If you don’t have T-Mobile, you can still sign up for a 90-day free trial of Quibi until May 1st.Visit BGR’s homepage for more stories.
In 2020, there’s no such thing as too much content. Many of us are stuck in our homes for the foreseeable future due to the novel coronavirus pandemic currently sweeping across the planet, and we’ve suddenly got time for all of those TV shows and movies we thought we would never catch up on.
In addition to all of the streaming services already available, Quibi (short for “quick bites”) launches on April 6th with 50 shows and movies, and if you happen to be a T-Mobile subscriber, you can join Quibi for a year free of charge. As T-Mobile explains in a news release, “customers with two or more voice lines at standard rates on Magenta and ONE plans with taxes and fees included — along with discounted First Responder, Military and Magenta Plus 55 plans — or small business customers with up to 12 lines” are eligible for the offer.
If you fall under one of these plans, you have until July 7th to snag your free Quibi subscription, which normally costs $4.99 per month. Starting on April 6th, you can sign up on mytmobile.com or the T-Mobile app for iOS or Android. At the end of the year, you will have the option to resubscribe at the standard price.
The hook of Quibi is that every episode of every original show is 10 minutes or less. Even the full-length movies — which the company refers to as “lighthouse” productions — are broken up into 4-10 minute chapters. New episodes will drop every day, as Quibi wants to become part of your daily routine. The talent that founder Jeffrey Katzenberg and CEO Meg Whitman have assembled is impressive as well, with the likes of Liam Hemsworth, Christoph Waltz, Sophie Turner, Chrissy Teigen, and Chance the Rapper all starring in their own shows and movies.
Amazon is planning to step up its protective measures for workers to check them for coronavirus symptoms.Starting next week, Amazon warehouse workers and workers at Amazon-owned Whole Foods will get masks and daily temperature checks.Those new protections come as coronavirus projections continue to worry public and private sector health officials, who keep warning the worst of the crisis is yet to come.Visit BGR’s homepage for more stories.
After many of its workers have complained for weeks now of inadequate protective measures against the coronavirus and some even staged a walkout in recent days, Amazon is now pledging new steps to protect the health of workers in its massive warehouses as well as at Amazon-owned Whole Foods.
Starting next week, those workers will be given daily temperature checks, since having a fever is one of the signs of coronavirus infection. Sources have told Reuters that Amazon plans to use no-contact forehead thermometers at warehouse entrances to measure all workers coming in, and anyone with a temperature greater than 100.4 Fahrenheit will be sent home.
Also by next week, all of those locations should be stocked with masks for workers to wear — the surgical kind made of fabric, not the N95 particle-blocking masks so desperately needed by front-line health workers right now.
These are major steps for a company that’s still being heavily relied upon to deliver goods around the world in spite of the global coronavirus pandemic that’s still raging. The vast majority of Americans are confined to their homes right now to support social distancing in an attempt to interrupt the spread of the virus, which continues to infect and kill scores of new victims daily — all while Amazon packages keep moving through the company’s vast delivery network.
Not that it’s business as usual for the e-commerce giant. If you visit the Amazon website today, you’ll see a notice at the top that reads: “We are giving priority to items that our customers need the most. You may experience shipping delays.”
The protections for warehouse workers, meanwhile, follow a rollout of mask deliveries that’s already underway, and Amazon has likewise already started checking workers’ temperatures in the Seattle area as well as in New York. Also this week, Amazon rival Walmart said it, too, would start offering workers masks and daily temperature checks.
If Amazon workers have to be sent home because of a fever, under these new measures they’ll have to stay home until they’ve had three days with no fever.
Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, in a memo to the company’s workers he penned in recent days, said the company’s leadership is meeting daily “to identify additional ways” it can improve on “preventative health measures for employees and contractors at our sites around the world.”
Andy is a reporter in Memphis who also contributes to outlets like Fast Company and The Guardian. When he’s not writing about technology, he can be found hunched protectively over his burgeoning collection of vinyl,
Apple and Goldman Sachs have allowed Apple Card holders to postpone their March and April payments until May without incurring interest. This measure will help those caught off guard by the COVID-19 pandemic.
To be able to defer your payments you’d need to enroll into the Customer Assistance Program through the Wallet app on your iPhone.
Apple already allowed Card holders to postpone their March payments and now extends that option for April payments as well. However users need to reapply for the exemption.