SXSW is fabled as having kicked off the success of web-based giants such as Twitter and Foursquare. But the festival, which in recent years has come to be known for the increasingly bizzarre marketing antics of companies both small and large, is home to talks and tradeshows about cutting-edge developments in the worlds of gaming and consumer technology. James Morris was on hand at SXSW, and rounded up some of the tech highlights of this year's event, including a Wired interview with Kim Dotcom's disembodied head, the launch of MakerBot's new Digitzer 3D scanner, and Tesla founder Elon Musk's Mars-themed keynote speech. Follow the link to find out more about what went down in the streets of Austin.
Unless you've been living under a feature phone lately, you probably know that Samsung's main point of focus in early-2013 has been the launch of the Galaxy S4. But that doesn't mean that the South Korean firm has forgotten about the needs of its wider user base - far from it. Today, we learned that Samsung has a clear roadmap for furnishing existing products with software upgrades, starting with the firm's 2012 flagship devices. The Galaxy S3 and Galaxy Note 2 headline Samsung's refresh list, with the popular duo expected to get a boost to Jelly Bean 4.2 in the immediate future, before eventually heading Android 5.0 Key Lime Pie. In fact, the latest report reveals that a host of popular Samsung handsets and tablets will be getting a taste of either Jelly Bean 4.2 or Key Lime Pie - follow the link to find out which devices will be satisfying their sweet tooth in the weeks and months to come.
Where are we with the state of the games industry? Well, the NPD Group in the US has added to the familiar theme of doom of gloom in a new report, reporting another year-on-year decline in the sales of hardware, software and accessories. Nintendo’s Wii U has not provided the industry boost some had hoped for, with its sales of about 64,000 for the month coming in lower than any numbers for the Xbox 360 or PlayStation 3, according to Gamasutra.
But research from UK gaming body TIGA suggests the sector is beginning to get into better shape - on our shores at least - with industry employment rising for the first time in three years. The non-profit trade association announced the findings today, based on an extensive survey of UK games businesses and analysis from various industry consultants. The headline figure reports a four per cent rise in employment within the games development sector between 2011 and 2012, ending the three year decline in this area. This was allied by an increase in annual investment from games studios from £411 million to £427 million, as jobs within studios grew from 8,888 to 9,224, and jobs supported by studios rose from 16,250 to 16,864. Could the fledgling UK recovery be indicative of better fortunes arriving for the gaming industry worldwide?