📲 iPhone 15 launch date, 🕸️ Spider-Man PS5, 🤖 Google's AI wants to attend meetings for you
Read today's banner-ad-free tech headlines, and our 👍 winners & 👎 losers
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As a human writing this email, I wonder if Google’s latest tech will soon make my job a thing of the past. Google Duet AI is a fascinating new tool that’s also somewhat unnerving, as it provides new capabilities that could revolutionize the way we work. Duet AI can attend a meeting for you, offer a recap of what everyone said, and even make suggestions on your behalf. Crazy stuff.
AI advancements aside, here’s what The Shortcut team has been meeting about – many of you kept asking us about the Spider-Man 2 PS5 covers restock on Friday and about the iPhone 15 launch date. Well, good news on both.
Details below ⤵️
📆 Your Calendar
🌝 Tonight: Rare Super Blue Moon (look up!)
🏴☠️ Aug 31, Thurs: One Piece live-action on Netflix
🕸️ Sept 1, Fri: Spider-Man 2 PS5 bundle release date
🌠 Sept 6, Wed: Starfield releases (biggest Xbox game in years)
🍎 Sept 12, Tues: iPhone 15 launch event date confirmed
🩸 Sept 19, Tues: Mortal Kombat 1 (pre-order live) release date
💻 Sept 21, Thurs: The next Microsoft Surface launch event
⚽️ Sept 29, Fri: EA Sports FC 24 (pre-orders live) release date (formerly FIFA)
Let’s get on with this week’s newsletter ⤵️
Today’s tech 👍 winners & 👎 losers
👍 🍎 Winner: The iPhone 15 Pro Max is going to be the one to get for this year
Apple’s next launch event has officially been announced for Tuesday, September 12, 2023 at 1pm ET / 10am PT and, as usual, it’ll be broadcast live from Apple Park. You can watch the iPhone 15 and Apple Watch 9 launch online at Apple.com or at Apple’s YouTube channel, and we’ll be bringing you all the announcements you need to know.
We’re expecting to see some big changes with this year’s iPhone line up. Apple is finally ditching the Lightning cable in favor of USB-C, the Dynamic Island will feature across all new iPhone models, and the Action Button is said to be replacing the long-standing mute switch.
What’s more, expect color-matched USB cables, thinner bezels, and a periscope zoom lens on the iPhone 15 Pro Max. Apple could also announce minor updates to its Apple Watch line with the Apple Watch Ultra 2 and Apple Watch 9, and the company may share some more news to make the eye-watering Apple Vision Pro price of $3,499 a little easier to stomach.
🔭 Why the iPhone 15 Pro Max has my eye: The largest iPhone is rumored to include a periscope telephoto lens, giving us more than 3x zoom
🚀 Launch event date & time: Confirmed for September 12, 2023 at 1pm ET
🛍️ Pre-order date & time: Likely September 15, 2023 at 8am ET
📆 Actual in-store release date: Likely Friday, September 22, 2023
👍+👎🤖 Winner & Loser: You don’t need a note-taker, but will companies just reduce headcount?
Take note – or don’t. Google Duet AI is the search engine giant’s AI technology that will take notes for you when you bow out of Google Meet video calls and simply want to receive a summary of what everyone else said (about work – and probably about you).
Duet AI, which just launched at Google’s Cloud Next conference, will also be able to capture action items and video snippets in real time, sourcing it from the people who decided to show up for your meeting while you were “double booked” at the beach. 😏
Here’s what it can do:
🤖 Google Duet AI will attend meetings on your behalf and take notes
💬 Late? It can catch you up with a “Summary So Far”
🏖️ Can’t make a meeting? It’ll pitch action items to your team
💰 Enterprise companies will pay $30 per month per user
🙋🏻♂️ This summary was written by a human
Duet AI is integrated into Google Workspace, so it’ll also be able to draft Gmail you want to send, summarize Gmail you don’t read, rewrite Docs, organize Sheets and whip up Slides. Many of these were previously demoed at Google IO in May.
Pretty neat, but will AI automation lead to a headcount reduction at work?
👍🕸️ Winner: Good news, Amazon shoppers. Our Spidey sense is tingling
The Spider-Man 2 PS5 bundle is set to release on September 1, and while it’s still in stock at most retailers, the Spider-Man 2 PS5 covers sold out fast when pre-orders went live on July 28. However, the covers may be in stock at Amazon on Friday, September 1, and this might be your last chance to grab them at retail price.
🕷️ The Spider-Man 2 PS5 comes with the Spider-Man 2 DualSense controller, covers, and a digital copy of the game
📆 However, you won’t be able to play the game until it releases on October 20, 2023
🤞 Marvel’s Spider-Man 2 is likely to be one of the best PS5 games when it releases
👉 Check Amazon on September 1 if you want to get the PS5 covers and follow Matt Swider on X for alerts.
👍📱 Winner: Promising screen technology eliminates glare and reduces blue light
This is the first phone with a full-color e-ink display that I found useable when I tested it out earlier this year. What’s amazing is it has a non-glossy, easy-to-read-without-glare screen that looks great at an angle and dramatically reduces blue light.
It’s coming out in Europe first in September and globally later. It’ll be in budget phones this time around, but I found the tech very promising.
Here’s why I like it:
📄 Nxtpaper 2.0 tech creates a printed-paper-like screen
🔵 Blue light is dramatically reduced for eye health and eliminates glare
🏆 I got to see the TCL 40 NXTPAPER phone in person earlier this year at Mobile World Congress, and The Shortcut team liked it so much that it topped our MWC 2023 awards. It was one of those things in tech that you have to see to believe, and I did just that in Barcelona.
👍 🕹️ Winner: There are so many great games to play on Apple Arcade
Apple Arcade is full of fantastic games that you can play across multiple devices. But with over 200 games to play, and more coming every month, it can be tricky to figure out what to play first. Luckily, we’ve rounded up the best Apple Arcade games in 2023 ahead of the iPhone 15 launch.
Here’s what we’ve recently updated with:
🔝 Check out the top 10 games we recommend on Apple Arcade
👍 The majority can be played across all Apple devices, like iPhone and Mac
🆓 Apple Arcade games are free of ads, in-app purchases and microtransactions
💰 The subscription service costs $4.99, which is cheaper than PS Plus and Xbox Game Pass
👍 🆚 Winner: We’ll help you decide between buying the Pulse 3D and Pulse Elite
PlayStation 5 gamers will soon have two official headsets from Sony to choose from, but how do they compare? We’ve pitted the PS5 Pulse 3D and PS5 Pulse Elite against each other to give you all the information you need to make an informed buying decision.
💰 Price: The PS5 Pulse 3D costs $99 and can often be found for less, while the new PS5 Pulse Elite is $149
🎧 Specs: The Pulse Elite uses planar magnetic drivers, which are usually reserved for high-end headsets
🎮 Compatibility: Only the Pulse Elite headset works with the PlayStation Portal for wireless audio
👍 📸 Winner: Sony has updated one of its classic cameras
After nearly three years, Sony has announced an updated version of the a7C, its full-frame mirrorless camera. It features a dedicated artificial intelligence processing engine that handles subject recognition, real-time tracking, and AI-based auto-framing. Sony says the new a7C II delivers a 40% performance boost when photographing animals and birds, which will please nature photographers.
👌 The Sony a7C II includes a 33MP back-illuminated Exmor R CMOS sensor
🎥 It can record full-width 4K/30p video, oversampled from 7K
🆕 The new model has an electronic first-curtain shutter
🤑 The a7C II will cost $2,200 body or $2,500 with the FE 28-60mm f/4-5.6
📸 Sony also announced the a7CR for $2,999
👍 🆕 Winner: Here comes a new challenger for the handheld throne
The Lenovo Legion Go is set to join a growing list of gaming handhelds like the Steam Deck, Asus ROG Ally, and of course, the Nintendo Switch. While we’re still waiting for an official reveal, practically everything you need to know about the portable PC has leaked. We’ve rounded up all the important details that you need to know, including the expected price, release date and specs.
💰 Price: The Lenovo Legion Go is rumored to cost $799
⚒️ Specs: It’s a powerful device and is tipped to have an 8.8-inch, 144Hz IPS screen
📆 Release date: An announcement is expected at IFA 2023, with a release set for October
😎 Glasses: Lenovo is also releasing some AR glasses that can connect to the device.
🤔 📈 Winner: Purely analytical (not political), we deep dive into what the former President’s return could mean for X
For the first time in 958 days, former US President Donald Trump has posted using his dormant and previously banned account on Twitter – which is now called X after Tesla CEO and Space X founder Elon Musk rebranded the social media platform.
A lot has changed in two years and seven months since Trump has been active on the platform, and every time there’s a major political move, we’ve noticed some unmistakable trends.
👍 🆚 Winner: Umming and ahhing over which PS5 to buy? We’ve got you covered
Our comprehensive PS5 Disc vs Digital comparison will help you determine which of Sony’s two console models you should buy if you’ve been eyeing up a PlayStation 5. We’ve got pictures of both the consoles in the flesh, so you can see the differences clearly, as well as get all the information you need to make an informed buying decision.
💰 Price: The PS5 Disc is $100 more expensive than the Digital Edition
✋ But… the Digital Edition can’t play discs and you don’t get a 4K Blu-ray player
📉 Physical copies of PS5 games are usually cheaper
🙌 You can also enjoy your existing library of physical PS4 games
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