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PlayStation Network Suffers DDOS Attack, Hackers Claim To Have Grounded SOE President’s Plane

PlayStation Network is currently experiencing mass outages for North American users, and the reason behind the downtime is a DDOS attack for which hacker group Lizard Squad has claimed responsibility. Sony says there haven’t been any personal details leaked in the attack, but the rolling outage persists in various locales, some ten hours or more after the attack began.

What’s unusual about this attack is that it also includes a security threat against the plane in which Sony Online Entertainment President John Smedley was traveling today. The plane was diverted to Phoenix and is currently having its cargo inspected, following claims on Twitter posted by the Lizard Squad group that claimed the same flight had explosives on board.

Of course, it’s still possible the plane was diverted for another reason and the claim by Lizard Squad is just a coincidence, but it would be a very convenient one given the timing on all the parts involved in this convoluted story. Suffice it to say, this isn’t your typical DDOS attack. We’ll provide more information if any becomes available.

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Sony hopes its ‘Album of the Day’ app for iOS will make you buy digital records again

Digital music sales are beginning to slow, but Sony is hoping to reverse that trend with its new ‘Album of the Day‘ app for the iPhone and iPod touch.

As the name implies, Sony will promote and discount one album from its music roster every 24 hours. The price-cut can be anywhere up to 70 percent and there’s a shortcut to purchase the tracks on iTunes. For now, it should be noted, that’s the only place which you can buy Sony’s cut-price records.

On screen, a timer shows when the current deal will close, and there are options to read more about the record, preview clips and share the deal through Twitter, email or SMS. By swiping left, you can also review previous offers that have now expired – this lets you know what (almost certainly) won’t come next, as well as making you feel bad for missing out on a particular record.

sony1 Sony hopes its Album of the Day app for iOS will make you buy digital records again

Perhaps of greater interest, however, is the app’s support for push notifications. By switching this on, you can forget the app exists and simply dismiss the daily alerts until an album you actually want surfaces on-screen.

Sony is promising big names for its upcoming 24-hour deals too, including Simon & Garfunkel, Santana, Dixie Chicks, Audioslave, Bruce Springsteen, Johnny Cash, Kings of Leon, P!nk, Bob Dylan, Lauryn Hill, The Script, Usher, Meat Loaf, Rodriguez, Sade, Aerosmith and Alicia Keys.

The app was developed by Sony Music Germany and launched in the same country back in March. It’s now available in the US, Canada, the UK, Australia, New Zealand and Ireland, which should expand its user base and the number of affiliated album sales dramatically.

➤ Album of the Day | iOS

Featured image credit: KAZUHIRO NOGI/AFP/Getty Images

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The LTE Verision Of Sony’s Ultra-Slim Xperia Z2 Tablet Hits Verizon Exclusively

The Sony Xperia Z2 Tablet is one of the best Android tablets on the market. It’s incredibly thin and waterproof, and the screen is stunning. Now it’s available in LTE, exclusively on Verizon for $599.99, although for a limited time it’ll be discounted to $499.99 when purchased with a new two-year activation.

The tablet is available for pre-order on July 10 and will be in retail locations on July 17.

The Xperia Z2 Tablet is a solid buy. Its screen and performance are as good as anything else currently available, including Samsung’s latest Note tablets. It’s the waterproofing and dust-proof that sets it apart from the rest, though. Sony built the Xperia Z2 Tablet to handle everyday life.

Verizon buyers will also get net six months of free service Sony’s Music Unlimited and six movie downloads. Those who pre-order the tablet will also receive Sony’s MDR-NC31EM Noise Canceling headset.

The company also just started selling the Xperia Z1 Compact in the U.S. six months after it was first available elsewhere. Sony has been slow to bring its latest mobile devices to the North American market, which is by design. The firm stated late last year that it is focusing on other areas before the cut-throat market in the States.

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Valve Shows Off Its Polka Dot VR Headset

Watch out, Oculus. Here comes Valve. The gaming giant recently demonstrated a prototype VR headset with wearers reporting impressive results.

The odd-looking headset is speckled with dots that allow a table-top camera to track the device’s location. Wearers report that there are two screens on the inside, although in this prototype, not all of the screen is visible. Clearly the device is a proof-of-concept more than a product nearing launch.

The race to embrace VR is heating up. Earlier this year, Valve demonstrated its VR headset to developers. Sony is also embracing devs for its PS4 VR headset. And, of course, there’s Facebook with its $2 billion bet on Oculus VR. Still, VR’s future is not guaranteed.

VR is a non-starter without content, as Valve and Sony clearly understand. Technology is only as good as its content: 3D TV died because of lack of content; and 4K TV isn’t doing so well, either. Still, while devs are courted, Oculus, Sony and Valve will likely keep tinkering with its hardware until the software is available.

IMAGE BY Geek

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