Respawn working on multiple games, may launch by winter 2019

Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order may be here soon.

A few months ago, Respawn Entertainment surprised everyone by announcing that the team was working on a game called Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order. Not much is known about the project, but it seems like it’s Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order and possibly Titanfall 3 could launch by holiday 2019.

On this weeks podcast: New ARM PCs, Microsoft earnings, and more!

This week on the Windows Central Podcast: New ARM PCs, Microsoft earnings, Andromeda sightings, and more!

We’re back with another exciting episode of the Windows Central Podcast, and this week Daniel Rubino and Zac Bowden have some unique and interesting hardware to check out in this episode, including the ARM-based Samsung Galaxy Book 2 with LTE connectivity, and the dual-screen Lenovo Yoga Book C930.

They also talk about Microsoft’s Q1 FY2019 earnings report and a new 19H1 build for Insiders. Plus, Zac shares some nuggets of information from a Microsoft presentation, stoking the fires of some hot, fresh Andromeda rumors. The common theme across the topics this week — it’s all about the haptics!

This episode of the Windows Central Podcast was recorded on October 26 2018.

Left 4 Dead-like 'Earthfall' gets long-awaited horde mode

Earthfall just got even bigger.

Earthfall is a Left 4 Dead-like multiplayer co-op shooter which launched on July 13, 2018 for Xbox One, PC, and PlayStation 4. The game follows players who fend off an alien invasion of the American Pacific Northwest using squad tactics, portable heavy weaponry, instant walls, and more tools as they try to avoid swarms of horrific intergalactic invaders.

General Grievous joins Star Wars Battlefront II

General Grievous is quite deadly.

General Grievous is one of the most popular Star Wars characters and today, he’s joining Star Wars Battlefront II. Yes, the same Star Wars Battlefront II that ignited a microtransactions controversy which a lot of foreign governments cracked down on. According to EA, “Trained in the Jedi arts by Count Dooku himself, you’ll be able to inspire fear in your enemies as you take control of the fearsome General Grievous.”

Grab this AmazonBasics gaming keyboard for $15

Never stop gaming.

The AmazonBasics gaming keyboard is down to $15.31 on Amazon. This keyboard regularly sells for around $25 and often goes as high as $35. This price is a couple bucks better than a deal we shared in September and only about a dollar above what it dropped to on Prime Day.

The keyboard has a few features that should appeal to gamers, including the ability to lock the Windows key and other context keys so you don’t accidentally press out of your game and custom macros so you can execute complex commands. You can use the software that comes with it to set those macros up. It also has anti-ghosting so you can press up to 19 keys at once without losing any actions and media controls so you can play/pause/mute videos or music. You’ll also be able to customize the lighting effects and save your changes to one of three profiles, which you can easily switch between. AmazonBasics devices come with a one-year warranty. Users give it 3.7 stars based on 149 reviews.

See on Amazon

The hybrid cloud market just got a heck of a lot more compelling

Let’s start with a basic premise that the vast majority of the world’s workloads remain in private data centers. Cloud infrastructure vendors are working hard to shift those workloads, but technology always moves a lot slower than we think. That is the lens through which many cloud companies operate.
The idea that you operate both on prem and in the cloud with multiple vendors is the whole idea behind the notion of the hybrid cloud. It’s where companies like Microsoft, IBM, Dell and Oracle are placing their bets. These died-in-the-wool enterprise companies see their large customers making a slower slog to the cloud than you would imagine, and they want to provide them with the tools and technologies to manage across both worlds, while helping them shift when they are ready.
Cloud-native computing developed in part to provide a single management fabric across on prem and cloud, freeing IT from having two sets of tools and trying somehow to bridge the gap between the two worlds.
What every cloud vendor wants
Red Hat — you know, that company that was sold to IBM for $34 billion this week — has operated in this world. While most people think of the company as the one responsible for bringing Linux to the enterprise, over the last several years, it has been helping customers manage this transition and build applications that could live partly on prem and partly in the cloud.
As an example, it has built OpenShift, its version of Kubernetes. As CEO Jim Whitehurst told me last year, “Our hottest product is OpenShift. People talk about containers and they forget it’s a feature of Linux,” he said. That is an operating system that Red Hat knows a thing or two about.
With Red Hat in the fold, IBM can contend that being open source; they can build modern applications on top of open source tools and run them on IBM’s cloud or any of their competitors, a real hybrid approach.
Microsoft has a huge advantage here, of course, because it has a massive presence in the enterprise already. Many companies out there could be described as Microsoft shops, and for those companies moving from on prem Microsoft to cloud Microsoft represents a less daunting challenge than starting from scratch.
Oracle brings similar value with its core database products. Companies using Oracle databases — just about everyone — might find it easier to move that valuable data to Oracle’s cloud, although the numbers don’t suggest that’s necessarily happening (and Oracle has stopped breaking out its cloud revenue).
Dell, which spent $67 billion for EMC, making the Red Hat purchase pale by comparison, has been trying to pull together a hybrid solution by combining VMware, Pivotal and Dell/EMC hardware.
Cloud vendors reporting
You could argue that hybrid is a temporary state, that at some point, the vast majority of workloads will eventually be running in the cloud and the hybrid business as we know it today will continually shrink over time. We are certainly seeing cloud infrastructure revenue skyrocketing with no signs of slowing down as more workloads move to the cloud.
In their latest earnings reports, those who break out such things, the successful ones, reported growth in their cloud business. It’s important to note that these companies define cloud revenue in different ways, but you can see the trend is definitely up:

AWS reported revenue of $6.7 billion in revenue for the quarter, up from $4.58 billion the previous year.
Microsoft Intelligent Cloud, which incorporates things like Azure and server products and enterprise services, was at $8.6 billion, up from $6.9 billion.
IBM Technology Services and Cloud Platforms, which includes infrastructure services, technical support services and integration software reported revenue of $8.6 billion, up from $8.5 billion the previous year.
Others like Oracle and Google didn’t break out their cloud revenue.

Show me the money
All of this is to say, there is a lot of money on the table here and companies are moving more workloads at an increasingly rapid pace.  You might also have noticed that IBM’s growth is flat compared to the others. Yesterday in a call with analysts and press, IBM CEO Ginni Rometty projected that revenue for the hybrid cloud (however you define that) could reach $1 trillion by 2020. Whether that number is exaggerated or not, there is clearly a significant amount of business here, and IBM might see it as a way out of its revenue problems, especially if they can leverage consulting/services along with it.
There is probably so much business that there is room for more than one winner, but if you asked before Sunday if IBM had a shot in this mix against its formidable competitors, especially those born in the cloud like AWS and Google, most probably wouldn’t have given them much chance.
When Red Hat eventually joins forces with IBM, it at least gives their sales teams a compelling argument, one that could get them into the conversation — and that is probably why they were willing to spend so much money to get it. It puts them back in the game, and after years of struggling, that is something. And in the process, it has stirred up the hybrid cloud market in a way we didn’t see coming last week before this deal.

The hybrid cloud market just got a heck of a lot more compelling

Surface Headphones will work great with iPhone and iPad

Best answer: Don’t be put off by the Surface in the name, these headphones will work just fine with an iPhone or an iPad when they’re released in November.

Microsoft: Surface Headphones (Order from November 15) ($350)

Surface Headphones are Bluetooth

The Surface Headphones are really fancy but when it comes down to it, the wireless connection that helps you listen to your music is plain old Bluetooth.

That means beyond just an iPhone or iPad, the Surface Headphones can connect to any other mobile device or computer with Bluetooth that you want to listen to music from.

Castlevania: Lords of Shadow series joins Xbox backward compatibility

Take on Dracula.

Ever since Xbox One backward compatibility was announced, gamers have been asking for a few high-profile games. While the majority of requests revolve around the Call of Duty franchise, the Castlevania franchise has been another hot series. Today, Xbox Live’s Director of Programming, Larry Hryb, announced that Just Cause, Castlevania: Lords of Shadow, Castlevania: Lords of Shadow – Mirror of Fate HD, and Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2 are now backward compatible.

Check out the new 3D viewer app for Windows 10

Mixed Reality Viewer is dead. Long live 3D Viewer.

Alongside the Windows 10 October 2018 Update, Microsoft has overhauled its Mixed Reality Viewer app with a brand new user interface and feature set, along with a rebrand that drops the Mixed Reality branding in favor of a much more candid name: 3D Viewer.

The new 3D Viewer should be rolling out for everyone via the Microsoft Store, which will replace the already preinstalled Mixed Reality Viewer app. The app itself has been redesigned from the ground up, featuring an interface that makes much more sense when in use with a mouse and keyboard.

Along the top is a new menu bar which features common drop down options such as File, View, Help, and more. The app is one of the first that I’ve seen which uses the UWP version of the menu bar, introduced in the SDK released earlier this year for app makers to take advantage. This is part of a more significant effort in pushing universal apps towards being a more viable platform for desktop/tablet apps.

A benefit of the new universal menu bar is that it’s also designed from the ground up for touch input too. So regardless of if you’re using the menu bar with a finger, mouse, or pen, usage will be familiar and comfortable no matter which input method you’re using.

Red Dead Redemption 2 is 2018's biggest entertainment launch

Red Dead Redemption 2 is on fire.

Red Dead Redemption 2 launched on Xbox One a few days ago, and since then the game has garnered tremendous reviews from critics and gamers alike. In our review, we said, “Red Dead Redemption 2 represents a generational leap for the gaming industry. It not only gives players meaningful quests that surpass even those found in The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, but it also touches on social issues that plague America even to this day.”