☕ Good morning! I finally struck gold on my Secret Santa this year, just as time ticked down to one week until Christmas. Phew.
In the last 24 hours, the Samsung Galaxy S21 cat has come out of the bag completely.
And, there’s a review on YouTube, somehow.
📸 Samsung’s Galaxy A72 5G has shown up in new leaks ahead of its early 2021 debut, including pics and quad-camera array details (Android Authority).
⚡ The rise of ultra-fast charging: How 2020 changed the way we charge our phones (Android Authority).
💸 Cyberpunk 2077 pulled from PlayStation Store until further notice, refunds to be offered (Sony). Huge moment, the first time Sony has done this. Meanwhile, the PC version and Stadia versions are fine, but the console release is a disaster and patches are required to fix it properly. What will Xbox do? (CD Projekt Red stocks fell as much as 23% at the time of writing.)
💄 Google will let you try on AR makeup on Search, but only partner brands products at the moment (Engadget).
💀 Google kills Android Things, its IoT OS: it’s been given up on for a while but now it’s officially shutting (Ars Technica).
🔓 The SolarWinds hack continues to grow towards being the most serious cybersecurity event ever: Microsoft software contained malicious SolarWinds code, with 40 plus customers targeted. The attack is “ongoing”. It’s not over the top to say this is chilling. Read Microsoft president Brad Smith’s post (blogs.microsoft.com) — the US Energy Department and National Nuclear Security Administration, which maintains the US nuclear weapons stockpile, show evidence of network access. Is this the tip of the iceberg? (Ars Technica).
⚖ Here’s the third antitrust lawsuit against Google from 38 states: The latest both echoes previous allegations brought by the Feds, and goes further, by seeking to stop Google from becoming dominant in the latest generation of technology: voice-assistant devices and internet-connected cars, and more (AP).
🍎 Judge orders Tim Cook and Craig Federighi to testify in the Apple vs Epic lawsuit over its App Store policies. July next year, at the earliest? (Apple Insider).
👛 Coinbase, perhaps the best-known American crypto company, announced it has filed confidentially to IPO in early 2021 (TechCrunch).
🐤 Twitter tests ‘humanization prompts’ in an effort to reduce toxic replies(Mashable).
😬 There’s a startling and lengthy new report about how toxic jet fumes can leak into the air on planes, and that the likes of Boeing know about it. One pilot who passed out on a Spirit Airlines flight after an event like this told other pilots, “this the tobacco and asbestos of aviation.” (LA Times).
🧂 A bunch of humble Raspberry Pis helped scientists track the seismic noise people stopped making in 2020(Ars Technica).
💥 Are self-destruct systems real? (Jalopnik).
🌸 Newly discovered orchid species labeled the ugliest in the world. But in better news, it smells good! (New Scientist).
🤔 “What is the single most “you’ll understand it when you’re older” thing?” (r/askreddit).
What could be more fun than The Great Conjunction happening in the skies above us?
From our perspective on Earth, Saturn and Jupiter are drawing closer, and they’ll be closest on December 21st, appearing as a double planet, despite being hundreds of millions of miles apart. (It’s also called a “Christmas Star” due to the late-December timing.)
This celestial happenstance between these two gas giants isn’t exactly common: last occurring at night about 800 years ago, and set to happen again in 2080.
Tristan Rayner, Senior Editor.