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If you’re someone who hasn’t yet got around to playing Overwatch, now would be a really great time to see what all the fuss is about and get hooked like the other 30 million of us, as for this weekend only the game is free to play, right through until 8:59 CEST on May 29. PC Gamer writes that those playing the game for free during this trial period will have access to all the heroes available in the game, as well as all maps, in a variety of modes, including Quick Play, Custom Games, and the latest Weekly Brawl. Should you then decide you want to buy the game, all your progress during the trial will be carried over.

During the trial period you’ll also get to participate in the special Anniversary Event celebrating the fact that the game was released a year ago. The Anniversary Event runs until June 12, and includes new maps and character skins, as well as loot boxes with anniversary goodies, including 11 Legendary skins.

However, PC...

Microsoft has today announced that it is changing the name of its Beam streaming platform to Mixer.

“We chose Mixer as our new name because it represents what we love most about the service…how it brings people together,” said Matt Salsamendi, co-founder and engineering lead for Mixer at Microsoft.

Aside from the name change, the Microsoft Blog says that the platform has undergone a “big evolution,” including the introduction of some new features that streamers and viewers have been asking for.

Writing on Xbox Wire, Salsamendi said that Mixer “brings people together through the core experience and ‘special sauce’ that our fans already know and love: the ability to not just watch streams, but to also interact with streamers and play together in near real-time. In other words, Mixer is livestreaming that’s actually LIVE, compared to the 10-20-second latency you typically get on other platforms.”

Salsamendi adds that Microsoft wants...

As part of its special Surface event in Shanghai today, Microsoft also announced a new Whiteboard on Surface app, and updated Surface Pen (which will no longer be bundled with the main Surface Pro tablet, and must be brought separately), as well as new inking capabilities.

In particular, Microsoft also focused on the ways in which the new Surface Pro and new accessories and apps have been designed to work in conjunction with Microsoft Office.

Panos Panay, corporate vice president, Microsoft Devices, talked today about how the hardware technology used in both the new Surface Pen and the new Surface Pro are designed to “transform the inking experience” when used in conjunction with Office. Among these new accessories are customisable pen tips that can be used across all Office 365 apps on all compatible devices, as well as support for tilt and shading across all Office 365 apps. The pencil texture and ink effects such as rainbow,...

Microsoft is currently holding a special event in Shanghai, China, where Microsoft's corporate vice-president of Devices, Panos Panay, has just announced the completely redesigned new Surface Pro, which Microsoft says is “upgraded, versatile, and exceptionally powerful, with iconic Surface design.”

The “beautifully crafted” new device is “the lightest, the best sounding, the fastest…the quietest,” Surface Pro, according to the launch video from Microsoft. It has 13.5 hours of battery life, which is 50% more than a Surface Pro 4...

The Next Web reports that ahead of tomorrow’s special Surface event in Shanghai, Microsoft’s Surface head Panos Panay has teased his Instagram followers with a snap of what looks very much like four new Surface Pro Type Covers, shown on a screen and clearly part of tomorrow’s presentation.

The Type Covers shown in Panay’s photo all look identical to the new colours and material unveiled recently for the Surface Laptop. It looks like Alcantara fabric is the new default for Surface Pro tablets as well as for the Surface Laptop, having previously been reserved for special edition Surface Pro Type Covers.

Most likely it will only be a relatively minor refresh for the Surface Pro range, most notably with new Kaby Lake processors, but still no USB-C or Thunderbolt ports. Expect lots of Surface Pro news from Microsoft tomorrow, and possibly even some surprises as well.


Pocket Gamer reports that EA Motive has released a new trailer for the eagerly awaited Star Wars Battlefront 2 that illustrates how the single-player campaign story portrays the Empire’s point of view through the eyes of an Imperial soldier. This is quite something for fans to get their heads around, being used to seeing the Empire as the bad guys, but Lucasfilm creative executive Steve Blank said that this EA Motive’s intention right from the beginning of the game.

The trailer features Iden Versio, the commander of the Inferno Squadron commando team; she’s part of “an Imperial family,” and her father is an...
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