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Computing

Hot Corners is the classic Mac feature you need to be using

Multitasking on Macs has long been a sore spot. In fact, between Snap Layouts and Snap Groups, it’s one of the main advantages Windows 11 continues to have over MacOS.

Or so I thought.

Little did I know that MacOS also has a neat productivity trick up its sleeve known as Hot Corners. It’s been around forever, but once I started using this feature, I couldn’t keep my hands off my Mac Mini, helping me discover how it can be used to overcome some of MacOS’ shortcomings — and catch it up to what Windows can do.

Desktop screen corner is like show desktop

Arif Bacchus/ Digital Trends

One of the things I use a lot in Windows is the ability to show the desktop with a single click. This is because I often stack my most used files on the desktop, as well as some apps critical to my daily workflow. You can show your desktop in Windows by clicking on the thin line next to the date and time. It’s a critical feature that’s been in Windows for a while, and it’s dead simple.

Well, with Hot Corners on MacOS, I’m able to do the same. Hot Corners, found in System Preferences in the menu for Desktop & Screen Saver, can be configured to use the corners of your display to automatically launch an application or menu. Setting it to show my desktop was one of the first things I wanted to try out.

Once selected, Hot Corners now shows my desktop by just mousing over to the lower-right side of my screen. This is what I often do in Windows, and now it works in MacOS just as easily. It’s a really convenient way to peek at the desktop without having to minimize all my open windows.

Application Windows screen corner is like Alt + Tab

The Application Corners Hot Corner enabled in MacOS.
Arif Bacchus/ Digital Trends

Another thing I use a lot in Windows is Alt + Tab. This is a great way to switch between open apps. It is true that MacOS has this feature, too. You’ll get a thin preview window, showing you icons for your open apps. However, the preview doesn’t show you what’s going on in your open windows, and it groups all open apps together as one.

Well, coming from using Windows for most of my life and being a Windows fan, I found out that the Application Windows function in Hot Corners is a lot like this. Once configured, I’m able to mouse over to the top right of my screen and see all instances — open and minimized — of an app.

MacOS will even show you the minimized instance of an application window on the bottom of the screen, with a quick way to bring it back up. It really helps me jump back into my windows quicker, just like Alt + Tab on Windows.

Mission Control screen corner is like Snap Layouts

Mission Control in MacOS
Arif Bacchus/ Digital Trends

Snap Layouts in Windows lets you organize open windows in various ways for better multitasking. Mission Control in MacOS is a little like this. When I set it up through Hot Corners, I get a look at all my open apps, just like clicking one of the options in a Snap Layout window would. I can then click one to bring it to the front as needed and then drag it to where I want it on the screen.

Mission Control might not “snap” the window for me, like Windows 11’s Snap Layouts do, but it is similar in that you get a view of all open apps and a full-screen preview of what’s going on in them to switch between. For snapping windows, I use Spectacle, which uses similar keyboard shortcuts to Snap Assist in Windows 10 and Windows 11.

LaunchPad screen corner is like the Start Menu

The Launchpad screen in MacOS.
Arif Bacchus/ Digital Trends

Alright, I’ll end with the last thing I noticed about Hot Corners. There’s an opening to configure it to show LaunchPad, which lists all your installed apps in MacOS.

As a Windows fan, this really reminds me of the Start Menu. Anytime I move my mouse to click the Start Menu, it’s always to get to open an app.

With the LaunchPad Hot Corner, I’m able to open an app on my Mac with ease, just like on Windows. Who would have known it could be this simple? It may get me to finally start using LaunchPad as intended.

One more way I’m being converted to a Mac fan

Hot Corners are just another way that I am slowly being converted over to a Mac fan. I already talked about how I’ve been enticed in the past thanks to the M1 chip and the Mac Mini already being optimized and faster than my main PC (a Surface Laptop Studio.)

With cool new features like Stage Manager, Continuity Camera, and an updated Mail app coming in the next version of MacOS, I might be switching away for good, soon enough.

Editors’ Choice




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Computing

How to use Hot Corners on a Mac

A Mac computer is a versatile device, and one of its biggest productivity boosters is called Hot Corners. This convenient feature is somewhat hidden away in System Preferences, but it’s easy to access and quick to set up when you know where to look.

It’s easier to navigate on a Mac when using Hot Corners, eliminating the need to remember keyboard shortcuts, and this can even speed up drag-and-drop operations. The feature can be a bit confusing in some circumstances, but a few tips can make using Hot Corners painless once you’re familiar with them and the muscle memory is built up.

What are Hot Corners on a Mac?

On a Mac, the term Hot Corners means something special happens when moving the pointer into a corner of the screen. There are four Hot Corners and 10 possible actions for each corner along with the option to disable a corner. Opening Launchpad, creating a Quick Note, putting the display to sleep, and more can be done simply by using a Mac’s mouse or MacBook’s trackpad to slide the pointer to a corner.

How to set up Hot Corners

Step 1: To enable Hot Corners, open System Preferences and type “Hot Corners” in the search box at the upper right or open the Desktop & Screen Saver pane, select Screen Saver, and open Hot Corners options by using the button at the lower-right.

If Hot Corners are disabled, you will see four menus with hyphens surrounding a tiny Mac display and positioned beside each corner. If any Hot Corners are already assigned, the currently selected actions will appear beside the corner that activates them.

A Mac can have up to four Hot Corners active.

Step 2: Choose one of MacOS’ Hot Corner menus to show a list of actions. Any corner can be set to open Mission Control, which shows all open apps; Application Windows, the windows of the current app; the Notification Center; or the Desktop.

You can set a Mac’s Hot Corner to control the screen saver, starting it without waiting several minutes for it to come on or disabling it when you’re reading.

You might want to instantly put the display to sleep or lock the screen of your Mac with a Hot Corner.

There are also two app launch options, one that opens Launchpad to see a list of all apps, and Quick Note, which opens a small window for notes.

MacOS can trigger several different actions with a Hot Corner.

How to use MacOS’ Hot Corners

You can activate any of the actions assigned to a Hot Corner by moving the pointer into a corner. Don’t worry about this interfering with normal usage since getting close isn’t enough. You have to push all the way into the top-left, top-right, bottom-left, or bottom-right corners to trigger the action.

Use MacOS’ Hot Corners for easier drag and drop

You can use Hot Corners when dragging text, files, or images to another window. This saves a huge amount of time and effort if you often have several overlapping windows open. Rather than rearranging to place the source and destination side by side, you can use Hot Corners. This makes MacOS’ drag and drop much more powerful.

If a Hot Corner is set to Desktop, Mission Control, or Application Windows, dragging to that corner shows those locations as a drop zone. It’s like being able to reach behind other windows to drop almost anywhere.

Hot Corners can be used to make drag and drop easier.

What if your Mac’s Hot Corners don’t work?

Sometimes your Mac’s Hot Corners might not work as expected. In most cases, this is because one or more extra monitors are connected and setup as an Extended display.

In this mode, MacOS treats the two screens as a single large display and that means some Hot Corners might be located on the secondary monitor. For example the left Hot Corners might behave normally but when you move to the right corner or edge, the pointer appears on the extended second screen.

In other cases, the power management system needs to be reset to clear the problem. Here’s how to resolve both issues.

Step 1: Open the Displays pane of MacOS’ System Preferences and drag the position of the secondary display so it isn’t exactly aligned with the primary display.

If a corner of the main screen extends beyond the corner of the other display, you’ll be able to use that Hot Corner on both the primary and secondary screen.

The trade-off is that the extra monitor’s physical location might not match where MacOS thinks it is. That means when you move the pointer to the other display, it might appear to jump instead of transitioning smoothly.

Avoid aligning a Mac's secondary screen with the primary to keep Hot Corners working.

Step 2: If multiple monitors are not causing the problem, you might need to reset the system management controller (SMC), which controls how your Mac manages power. Since Hot Corners are related to the Screen Saver and Sleep, the SMC might be preventing normal operation of this feature. On Apple Silicon Macs, simply plug it into power and restart the Mac to reset the SMC.

If you own an Intel MacBook, a special keyboard combination is required. Press and hold Control, Option, and Shift for seven seconds, then hold the power button to turn off the MacBook. Keep holding all three keys and the power button for another seven seconds. Then wait a few extra seconds and power on again.

For desktop Intel Macs, the SMC can be reset by removing the computer from power. After unplugging your Mac, wait 15 seconds then plug it in again, wait five more seconds, then power on.

Resetting the SMC should resolve any lingering problem with the Mac’s Hot Corners feature.

Restart an Apple Silicon Mac to reset the SMC.

MacOS’s Hot Corners are great time savers. Navigating the Mac becomes much easier and drag and drop is super-charged when a Hot Corner is used. Your screen saver won’t come on unexpectedly if the pointer is moved to the disable corner and it can quickly lock a Mac when you’re stepping away. It’s worth taking a few minutes to become familiar and setup Hot Corners on your Mac to make everything a bit easier.

Editors’ Choice




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Computing

Asus ROG Gladius III Review: Hot, Underappreciated Gem

Asus ROG Gladius III Wireless

MSRP $119.00

“Asus’ Gladius III is a stunning, underappreciated gem of a mouse that bodes particularly well for casual gaming thanks to its comfortable, tactile design.”

Pros

  • Superb ergonomics for a gaming mouse
  • Hot-swappable switches
  • Satisfying optical Omron switches included
  • Excellent connectivity options

Cons

  • Not quite as good for competitive gaming

Even the best gaming mice aren’t typically known for comfort. That’s a shame, since not all of us are exclusively playing twitchy shooter games all the time.

Today, we’re having a look at Asus’ Gladius III Wireless mouse, which promises both excellent performance and a more ergonomic design.

Though it’s not the most premium option in the line — that’s the ROG Chakram — the Gladius III isn’t cheap. It’s priced at $119 for the wireless version. Fortunately, the Gladius III justifies its price with user-replaceable switches, a great sensor, and a comfortable grip.

Design & comfort

Top view of the Asus ROG Gladius III.

The Gladius III’s design is one that’s clearly optimized for comfort, with a large, bulbous body that presses well into the palm of your hand. This larger size, paired with the right-handed design, makes it among the more comfortable mice I’ve tested. It’s not meant to be claw-gripped or finger-tipped as much, but this might make a healthier option than something like Razer’s Orochi V2 and Logitech’s G Pro X Superlight.

As far as comfort goes, the closest match I have found to Asus’ pointer is Razer’s Pro Click, and although that isn’t strictly a gaming mouse — as is obvious by its lack of RGB — it’s kind of a wolf in sheep’s clothing, as it does pack solid switches and a great sensor.

Razer’s mouse has a better overall shape, though. The pear shape with the bigger bottom of the Gladius requires you to fully grip the mouse; grabbing it slightly lower as a fingertip mouse will have it pointed slightly to the left.

Angled view of the Asus ROG Gladius III.
Niels Broekhuijsen/Digital Trends

Comfort aside, the Gladius III doesn’t present itself with a host of premium materials. The plastic is soft, and the debossed artwork on the left and right sides acts sufficiently as grips for picking the mouse up.

At just 89 grams, it’s also light. That’s not super-light territory, but — at under 100 grams for a large comfort-oriented pointer such as this one — it’s respectable.

RGB illumination is also present in three zones: the main logo, the scroll wheel, and thumb rest artwork. Connectivity is provided by an included 2.4GHz dongle, Bluetooth, and USB-C.

Under the hood

Bottom of the Asus ROG Gladius III.

Popping under the mouse’s hood — this time not metaphorically — we find a handful of interesting features. First-off, the mouse’s main sensor is one that tracks at up to 19,000 DPI, though it does have a tune to 26,000 — rated to track accurately at up to 400 inches per second at up to 50 g maximum acceleration. I don’t have the testing equipment to verify these numbers, but I can attest to accurate tracking in more intense gaming sessions.

There is a more compelling reason to get the Gladius III though: You can, quite literally, take off its top shell — the hood — and replace bits internally.

Asus ROG Gladius III opened up to expose hot-swappable switches.
Niels Broekhuijsen/Digital Trends

To remove the top, you simply remove two rubber gaskets from the bottom, undo two screws, and pull off the hood. From here, the mouse’s internals are fully exposed, though the only thing you’re meant to do here is to replace the primary switches.

The Gladius III comes with Asus’ own ROG 3-pin Micro-switches preinstalled from the factory, but it also ships with a set of 5-pin Omron D2FP-FN switches. The former are mechanical, but the latter are optical — hence the extra pins — removing the need to account for debounce and theoretically leading to faster performance.

The switches included with the Asus ROG Gladius III.
Niels Broekhuijsen/Digital Trends

In practice, I find that the difference is mostly down to the clicking action. The default ROG switches aren’t bad, but the optical Omron switches absolutely feel and sound better. The click is a smidge lighter, certainly more distinct, and sounds less dampened.

The catch is that they’re pingy in their sound, which can get annoying.

When I reverted to the ROG switches, I found them feeling a bit soft and mushy, so I’m keeping the Omron’s on to enjoy their sharpness. The scroll wheel is also pleasantly notchy, so they match well.

The fact that the mouse supports hot-swappable switches at all, though, is significant. For the most part, Asus is the only company doing this. Most mice cannot be opened up to begin with, and when you do, the switches need to be desoldered to swap.

Asus also includes a set of four replacement glide pads for the mouse, which help extend the mouse’s service life. Being this easy to open up, I can also imagine that replacing the battery is also possible, provided you find a compatible replacement when you need it.

Gaming performance

Jump into a game, and the Gladius III instantly shines, too. I played a fair amount of competitive Insurgency Sandstorm on this mouse, as well as a few hours of Mass Effect Legendary Edition, and the Gladius III Wireless was a comfortable companion the entire time.

Hovered over view of the Asus ROG Gladius III.
Niels Broekhuijsen/Digital Trends

That being said, there is a reason most gaming mice aren’t sculpted for comfort: competitive gaming performance. Although I was still good at Insurgency Sandstorm when using the Gladius III, I wasn’t as good as when using my previous all-time-favorite, the Logitech G Pro X Superlight, and I think that’s down to the shape and weight. The Logitech has a shape that demands a more aggressive grip, and it’s much lighter at 63 grams instead of 89 grams.

It’s not a huge change, but this does make a noticeable difference in competitive games: I didn’t feel quite as in control.

However, when I switched to Mass Effect Legendary Edition, this performance disparity between the two mice instantly disappeared. In this more story-focused game, I vastly preferred the Asus mouse – my sensitive hands thanked me for taking a break from the G Pro X. I didn’t feel hampered by the mouse the way I did in a competitive game.

Our take

The Asus ROG Gladius III Wireless is an excellent gaming mouse that is clearly geared toward use with more casual games and toward players who put in long hours in virtual worlds with a mouse that won’t punish them for it. I’ll go as far as saying that it’s 80% as comfortable as a truly ergonomic mouse, such as the MX Master 3, while being 90% as effective in-game as the G Pro X Superlight. If you primarily play single-player titles, the Gladius III is certainly a mouse to consider.

Tack that onto it being a serviceable and tunable mouse with user-replaceable switches, and I wonder, “Why isn’t this clicker more popular?” The Gladius III is, in my book, an underappreciated gem.

Are there any alternatives?

If you’re looking for a mouse with a proper and bulgy ergonomic shape, the only real alternative that comes to mind is the Razer Pro Click. It’s $20 cheaper but doesn’t have RGB or hot-swappable switches, and it’s only available in white. Other ergonomic mice such as Logitech’s G502 Lightspeed or Razer’s Basilisk are too narrow and aggressively sculpted to match the Asus for comfort.

How long will it last?

Normally, I won’t say that a mouse lasts past three to five years, but with replaceable parts, I could see the Gladius III lasting well into a decade. Whether you’ll still be using it then is another question.

Should you buy it?

Absolutely. If your main focus is story-based gaming, and you make long hours at the PC, your right hand will thank you for using one of the most comfortable gaming mice with a palm grip.

Editors’ Choice




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Security

Another 500 million accounts have leaked online, and LinkedIn’s in the hot seat

You might still be reeling from the news that personal information from 533 million Facebook accounts has been made freely available online. But now there’s another huge batch of people’s data floating around the web — including data from LinkedIn, the Microsoft-owned social network confirmed. And the potential scope of the leak is huge: an individual selling the data on a hacker forum claims it was scraped from 500 million LinkedIn profiles, according to CyberNews.

In a purported sample of two million of the profiles for sale, LinkedIn members’ full names, email addresses, phone numbers, genders, and more were visible, CyberNews found. LinkedIn, however, says the data includes information from many places and wasn’t all scraped from the professional-focused social network.

“We have investigated an alleged set of LinkedIn data that has been posted for sale and have determined that it is actually an aggregation of data from a number of websites and companies,” reads LinkedIn’s statement.

The company also contends that “no private member account data from LinkedIn was included” — which perhaps means the scraped data only includes information you’d be able to see on someone’s public page. LinkedIn insists that this was “not a LinkedIn data breach,” which would be technically true if the data was scraped rather than collected by a hacker penetrating LinkedIn’s systems, but doesn’t do much for users whose data is now being sold on the internet.

LinkedIn has yet to tell us if it will notify users whose data was in the dataset. (Facebook, if you were wondering, doesn’t plan to inform users if they are one of the people whose data leaked.) If you want to check whether your email or phone number was part of the Facebook data leak, we have instructions here.

Italy’s privacy watchdog has started an investigation into LinkedIn, it confirmed to Bloomberg.

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Game

Hot Wheels Unleashed drops die-cast cars and orange tracks on consoles and PC this year

Today Mattel and Milestone announced a new Hot Wheels game dubbed Hot Wheels Unleashed. As the name suggests, this arcade racer will give players the reins to a number of the die-cast cars Mattel has released through the years, even giving them the chance to build their own courses using Hot Wheels’ bendy orange tracks that seemed to be everywhere in the ’90s.

There have been a number of Hot Wheels games released throughout the years, and they’ve been fairly hit and miss. Most recently, we’ve seen Hot Wheels cars show up as themed DLC for a number of racing games like Rocket League and Forza Horizon 3, but before that, it seemed that the brand was mostly relegated to the world of mobile game for a few years.

That all changes with the release of Hot Wheels Unleashed, which is a cross-generation game launching on PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, Nintendo Switch, and PC on September 30th. According to Mattel and Milestone’s announcement today, players will race Hot Wheels die-cast cars through tracks that have been built in various “everyday-life locations” like garages and living rooms – it seems, though, that a full list of in-game locations will be revealed at a later date.

It sounds like players will be able to unlock new cars as they play, but the method in which they’ll unlock those cars hasn’t been revealed yet. The game will feature single-player and multiplayer modes (which is playable both online and split-screen), along with a track editor that will allow players to make their own tracks and share them online with the Unleashed community.

All in all, it sounds like a game that might be worth checking out if you’re a fan of either Hot Wheels or arcade racers. Hot Wheels Unleashed is up for pre-order beginning today, and we’ll be keeping an eye out for more details on as we move through the year.

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Computing

Microsoft tests the Surface Book 3 to avoid ‘hot bag’ heat issues

Microsoft is sweating the details with the Surface Book 3, especially when it comes to thermal issues that users experienced with the Surface Book 2 and the original Surface Book. As the company prepares to launch the Surface Book 3 on May 21, it’s specifically testing the new model for “hot bag” and other heat problems.

Heat issues have affected Microsoft’s Surface devices going back to the Surface Pro 3, but both the original Surface Book and the Surface Pro 4 were plagued by an inability to enter a low-power sleep state. That kept both devices in an an active power state, which consumes lots of power and generates quite a bit of heat as a result. That had two negative effects: greatly diminished battery life, and a surprisingly hot Surface when pulled out of an enclosed, insulated backpack. The issue was significant enough that Surface chief Panos Panay himself announced new firmware that solved the Surface Book power issue several months after its launch.

The Surface Book 2 had its own, separate power problem, where it consumed too much power for the charger to keep up. But in my personal experience, the Surface Book 2 also suffered from the hot-bag problem, which was echoed by other users both on Microsoft’s site and on Reddit. The temperature would climb to levels that were honestly alarming. The Surface Book 2 devices would sometimes refuse to resume operation because the operating temperature exceeded its own thermal limits. 

Microsoft acknowledges that the hot-bag scenario is one “which can destroy your device,” in the words of one Surface executive PCWorld spoke to. Executives responsible for the Microsoft Surface tell PCWorld that part of the Surface Book 3 test suite involves literally putting the Surface Book 3 test units in backpacks and testing for heat buildup. Microsoft also embedded a number of thermal sensors in the Surface Book 3 device itself to prevent this from happening.

While a hot-bag scenario could still occur with the Surface Book 3, the fact that Microsoft is specifically looking out for this issue is good news. Personally, from our own experience with the Surface Book 3 so far, we can report that its cooling is on a par with the Surface Laptop 3’s: excellent, with minimal fan noise or thermal issues. We’ll have a full review soon.

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Game

Super Mario hot buns and snack food hit 7-Eleven in Japan

If you’re looking for the most gamer-friendly foods in the universe right this minute, it should come as no surprise that the most fantastic options you’re going to find reside in Japan. The convenience store 7-Eleven teamed up with Nintendo this season for a variety of snack cakes and fun munchies. In the mix starting this week are six new Super Mario branded treats for all to consume.

The Mario Mix Roll was released for approximately 183 yen (around $1.75 USD). This little monster includes a roll split down the middle and filled with egg salad, a croquette, and mushroom sauce spaghetti. That feels appropriate from start to finish.

There’s a Yoshi Green Melon Bread for 151 yen (around $1.50 USD). That’s a green sweet roll filled with melon whipped cream. Next is Bowzer’s Fire-Breathing Super Spicy Karagge Roll for 354 yen (around $3.50 USD). That looks to be the hottest entry in the collection with bread filled with fried chicken, seasoning and sauce.

A Fire Flower Fire Curry Bun will cost you around 140 yen. That’s a little bun with a Fire Flower on top and hot filling. It looks cute, but the filling is clearly not to be trifled with.

There’s a Princess Peach’s Dolce for 342 yen available, complete with strawberry cheesecake and strawberry gelatin inside. You’ll need a spoon to eat either the Princess Peach’s Dolce or the Shining Star Milk Kanten. The star will cost you 226 yen and it includes “a creamy agar dessert” according to Seven Eleven Press via SoraNews24 today.

Why in the entire world don’t we have awesome snack foods like these here in the United States of America? Do we not love Mario enough to gain Nintendo’s trust with such treasures? Do we not buy enough Nintendo Switch consoles to make it worth the release? Spicy Fire Flower buns for all!

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Game

Switch Joy-Con drift could land Nintendo in more hot water

For pretty much as long as the Nintendo Switch has been on the market, we’ve been hearing reports of Joy-Con drift from players. Drifting thumbsticks have been a major problem for a lot of people, to the point where Nintendo has had class-action lawsuits filed against it. Now, it seems the company has caught the eye of a major consumer advocacy group in Europe, and may soon be facing an investigation from European regulators.

Specifically, The European Consumer Organisation (BEUC) has submitted a complaint about Nintendo and its malfunctioning Joy-Cons with the European Commission, asking the EC to take action on the matter. The complaint was filed on behalf of consumers across Europe, as the BEUC says that it has received testimony from consumers in France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Portugal, Italy, Norway, Slovakia, Slovenia, and Greece.

According to the BEUC, it received “nearly 25,000 complaints from European consumers,” regarding Joy-Con drift, and it considers this an example of premature obsolescence. “According to consumer testimonies, in 88% of cases, the game controllers broke within the first two years of use,” the BEUC wrote today. “On behalf of consumer groups in affected countries, BEUC has submitted a complaint to the European Commission and national consumer protection authorities for premature obsolescence and misleading omissions of key consumer information (on the basis of the EU’s Unfair Commercial Practices Directive).”

From here, the BEUC is asking for a “Europe-wide investigation into the issue,” from the European Commission, and it would also like to see “Nintendo to be obliged to urgently address the premature failures of its product.” In the interim, it wants Nintendo to repair faulty controllers for free and properly inform consumers about their “limited lifespan.”

So, we’ll see what happens from here, but when you’ve got a large consumer organization like the BEUC requesting an investigation from the European Commission, then Nintendo might quickly find itself on the wrong side of regulators regarding this Joy-Con drift problem. You cen read more about the BEUC’s complaint – and see the letter they sent to the European Commission – by visiting the BEUC’s website.

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Tech News

Google Play Hot Air Balloon offline game released to the masses

This week the Google Play Hot Air Balloon offline mini-game launched into the wild. This game was in development for quite a while now, appearing in testing for months back in 2020 – now it would appear that it’s ready to roll. If you’d like to give this game a go, make sure you’ve got the latest version of the Google Play store on your Android device – then disconnect from the internet.

To make sure you have the latest version of Google Play on your smartphone, head over to the Google Play services app right this minute. With this app’s latest update, your Android device will be able to check whether you need a newer version of Google Play. Once you have the latest version of Google Play, you should be able to access the balloon game.

To access the balloon game, simply open up Google Play while your smartphone or tablet is disconnected from the Internet. Turn off mobile data and turn off wi-fi, and go!

Once you open the Google Play app store with your internet turned OFF, you’ll see the sleeping satellite. This satellite is so very sleepy that he is drooling. Under the satellite, you’ll see a message that says “You’re offline.” Below that, you’ll see “Check your connection of get a notification when you’re back online.”

Below that, there should be a section that says “Play while you wait” followed by an icon with a balloon and “Hot Air Balloon”. To the right of these, there should be a “Play” button. Tap that button and go ahead!

This is only the latest offline game created by Google for the greater good of IT professionals everywhere. Instead of flipping one’s lid over a single app or service’s inaccessibility, a user is encouraged to wait while it’s fixed, flying a balloon or running across an ancient world as a t-rex.

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