Microsoft has partnered with Epic Games to make Fortnite playable, for free, on Xbox Cloud Gaming. No subscription required. So long as you have a Microsoft account in one of 26 streaming-enabled countries, you can play the battle royale title through the web browser on an iPhone, iPad, Android device or Windows PC.
The streaming version supports both controllers and touch. Creative mode is also free although you’ll need to pay if you want to fight AI villains in the Save the World campaign. Microsoft also said it would “look to bring” other free-to-play titles to Xbox Cloud Gaming.
It’s not the first workaround — NVIDIA has also allowed its cloud gaming subscribers to stream Fortnite on Apple devices. Microsoft, however, has a bigger audience of casual gamers, making this a bigger deal. It also sided with Epic when the company went toe-to-toe with Apple over App Store restrictions and costs.
— Mat Smith
The biggest stories you might have missed
It ‘cheated’ them out of free tax services.
TurboTax maker Intuit will pay $141 million “for deceiving millions of low-income Americans into paying for tax services that should have been free,” the New York Attorney General’s office wrote in a press release.
The company must refund nearly 4.4 million consumers who used TurboTax’s Free Edition between 2016 and 2018, then discovered they had to pay to file. Many didn’t realize they could have used the IRS Free File program available in a separate product, which costs nothing. Intuit released a statement expressing no regret and said the required ad changes would have little impact on its business.
It’s done with being subtle.
The long-awaited third live-action Star Trek series in recent years makes its debut on Paramount+. But, while Discovery carried the burden of being the first Star Trek show in 12 years and Picard saw the return of a beloved character after 17 years, Strange New Worlds appears to pitch itself, in many ways, as a return to the Star Trek of the past, beyond just more episodic storytelling.
There’s also a laptop that Lenovo claims is carbon neutral.
Lenovo’s big spring laptop refresh includes a new generation of Slim clamshell laptops in the US (which confusingly share the Slim branding with older, unrelated models). These include the Slim 9i, the Slim 7i and Slim7i Pro X, the Slim 7i Carbon and the Slim 7. The last of those come with an AMD Ryzen 6000 Series processor rather than the Intel chips inside its sisters, while the Slim 9i claims to be carbon neutral.
That connected ‘vanlife.’
A new Starlink feature called Portability allows users to temporarily use Starlink when they’re away from home. In the US, Portability will cost $25 per month. That’s on top of the regular service fee, which SpaceX recently bumped up to $110 per month. The hardware now costs $599 for those without a pre-order.
There are some caveats: It’s not worth taking a terminal on a transatlantic trip. Starlink says the feature is only available when users are on the same continent as their registered service address. They’d also have to ship it…
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