Sunday, June 13, 2021

Ubisoft Brings Rocksmith As A Subscription Service Back, Today closed Beta Sign-ups Start

During Ubisoft's E3 presentation, the publisher announced it's getting back in the guitar tutorial business with Rocksmith+. This new version of the decade-old franchise was given ample spotlight during the live stream, as Ubisoft San Francisco explained how is transforming it from a standalone product into a robust subscription service.Arthur Von Nagel, a Ubisoft producer, discussed some of the enhancements and changes coming to Rocksmith+. He noted how aspiring musicians can learn to play guitar or bass by connecting their instrument of choice to a PC, console, or mobile device. Because Rocksmith+ is able to use your phone as a microphone, acoustic guitar players and those using electric guitars with amplifiers can play without additional equipment. The appropriate app is all that’s needed to be downloaded on a mobile device and synced to whichever platform the user chooses. The music library was described as having “a huge amount of songs at launch,” featuring master recording and will grow each week with “new, authentic arrangements.” Genres mentioned in the presentation include pop, hip-hop, country, R&B, Latin, and metal subgenres. “It’s the most diverse song library ever seen in music learning software,” claims Nagel. There’s even going to be a way for users to create and add their own arrangements using a new tool called Rocksmith Workshop. Nagel also announced a bunch of new ways for people to learn strum or shred from Rocksmith+. Chord charts will be included for those who prefer to stick to rhythm guitar as well as the more accurate note-for-note style of past versions of Rocksmith. New this time around is a tablature view to read the music as one would with traditional sheet music. An enhanced recommendation system and better progress tracking have been added to allow for a more personalized learning experience for beginner and intermediate musicians. In a press release after the show, Ubisoft announced pricing details: $14.99 for a 1-month subscription, $39.99 for a 3-month subscription, and $99.99 for a 12-month subscription. Sign-ups for the Rocksmith+ "closed beta" start today, and the full launch of the service is expected later this year. You can check out the rest of Ubisoft’s big announcements at our E3 hub, and watch the reveals from other publishers along with the Game Informer team live on Twitch!
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    UK lawsuit asks Qualcomm to cover $680 million to Apple and Samsung phone owners

    After being handed a series of antitrust fines over its apparent abuse of power, Qualcomm is now facing a consumer lawsuit that could see it forced to compensate UK phone owners. The country's leading consumer association Which? is suing the Snapdragon chip maker to the tune of £482.5 million ($683 million) in damages for allegedly breaching competition law. Which? claims Qualcomm used its dominance in the patent-licensing and processor markets by charging Apple and Samsung inflated fees for its tech licenses, which were then passed on to consumers in the form of higher smartphone prices. It estimates that individuals who purchased Apple or Samsung handsets since 2015 could be entitled to between £17 to £30 ($24 to $42) depending on the number and type of smartphones they bought. Qualcomm has rubbished the allegations. "As the plaintiffs are well aware, their claims were effectively put to rest last summer by a unanimous panel of judges at the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in the United States," a company spokesman told BBC News, referencing the FTC suit for unfair practices from 2017 that was dismissed last year. The latest challenge echoes the legal actions that have haunted the beleaguered chip giant over the past several years. While $683 million represents little more than 2.8 percent of Qualcomm's revenue in 2020, the company has struggled to free itself from the resulting bad publicity of fines and litigation woes. In Asia alone, it has previously been slapped with antitrust penalties in China, Korea and Taiwan that amounted to over $2.6 billion. Meanwhile, the European Commission fined it €997 million ($1.23 billion) in 2018 for paying Apple to secure an exclusive modem deal. And again in 2019, when it was struck with a €242 million fine ($271 million at the time) for alleged price dumping on 3G chips.

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