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By Jefferson Mangubat
Microsoft Office edit support comes to Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides for iOS
by Jefferson Mangubat
Google has rolled out native editing support for Microsoft Office files on Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides for iOS. The company announced the latest change today, available now for all users with both personal and enterprise accounts.
The new update allows you to edit, comment, and collaborate on Office files in Docs, Sheets, and Slides on your iPhone or iPad. Google says the feature "brings the collaborative and assistive features of Google Workspace to your Microsoft Office files” for iOS users. That means you no longer have to download and email file attachments like before. Prior to this change, you would need to convert an Office file into a format that's compatible with Docs, Sheets, or Slides in order to edit it on your iOS device, making that task cumbersome.
Office editing support was previously introduced to Docs, Sheets, and Slides for Android in September. The same functionality was rolled out on the web last year. Just like its Android release, today's update gives you access to new improvements to sharing options and controls. The new capability also replaces the previous Office Compatibility Mode (Quickoffice), which only had basic functions.
By Abhay V
Flight Simulator's second World Update brings visual updates to the U.S.
by Abhay Venkatesh
After delivering the first World Update in September that brought improvements to the scenery and airports in Japan, Microsoft’s second Flight Simulator content drop this time focuses on the U.S.A, just in time for the holidays. World Update II: USA is now rolling out as a free update to Xbox Game Pass for PC, Windows 10, and Steam users. The update also fixes a bunch of bugs and other known issues.
The update brings improved elevation maps for terrain, resolution improvements “up to one meter”, aerial texture enhancements for better appearance, and four new “hand-crafted airports”, says the firm. These airports include Atlanta (KATL), Dallas/Fort Worth (KDFW), Friday Harbor (KFHR), and New York Stewart (KSWF).
The firm has also improved the visuals of 48 other airports and has added 50 new “points of interest” – areas with enhanced visuals. Some of these include the White House, Washington Monument, Capitol, Hoover Dam, Las Vegas Strip, and more. You can head to the release notes here to view the entire list.
Additionally, the update also brings a new Bush Trip “across the Alaskan wilderness” and a Discovery Flight through iconic east coast locations. The firm notes that users will have to head to the Marketplace to claim the World Update after downloading the latest patch for the simulator.
As for the list of fixes, patch version 188.8.131.52 brings with it a bunch of fixes for airplanes such as remedies for the fuel consumption issue on the Boeing 747-8 and the A320neo. Other elements such as the UI, activity logs, input devices have also received improvements.
Here is the complete changelog:
Overall, the updates to performance and the improved visuals for the locations in the U.S. bring with it welcome additions right in time for the holiday weekend, especially with the pandemic forcing more people indoors.
Rockstar will offer Red Dead Online as a standalone game priced at $4.99
by Pulasthi Ariyasinghe
Rockstar Games' open-world western epic Red Dead Redemption 2 is gaining a new version soon, as the studio today announced that its online mode is being spun off to be offered as a standalone game. The release date is set for December 1, and it will be available for $4.99 as an introductory price.
The Red Dead Online standalone version will be the complete online experience, with story-based cooperative missions, player vs player Showdown modes, Specialist Roles, Free Roam Missions, and much more available across the massive open world.
The $4.99 introductory price will go away after February 15, 2021, bumping up the cost of the standalone multiplayer game to $19.99. Rockstar will also offer an option to unlock the Red Dead Redemption 2 story mode from within this variant, but the exact cost of this upgrade was not announced today.
Although it is a standalone experience, it doesn't appear as though the installation size requirements are changing, as the studio revealed the game will require up to 123GB of free space.
Red Dead Online will be available for PC (Steam, Epic Games Store, and Rockstar Games Launcher), Xbox One, and PlayStation 4. Xbox Series X|S and PlayStation 5 users will be able to play the game using backward compatibility also. Moreover, since this is a fully multiplayer experience, PlayStation Plus and Xbox Live Gold memberships are required for console players.
Xbox Games with Gold for December include Saints Row and The Raven Remastered
by João Carrasqueira
Microsoft has gone ahead and revealed its Games with Gold lineup for the month of December. These games will be available at no additional cost for those subscribed to Xbox Live Gold, and as usual, they include two Xbox One games and two games that were originally released on the Xbox 360, though they will all work on future generations of Xbox - including the Xbox One and Series X|S - through Backwards Compatibility.
The Xbox One games are available for a full month, and they are the following:
The Raven Remastered (December 1 - December 31)
Bleed 2 (December 16 - January 15)
As for the Xbox 360 titles, each one is only available for two weeks. The games available in December are the following:
Saints Row: Gat out of Hell (December 1 - December 15)
Stacking (December 16 - December 31)
You can only claim the games during the period mentioned above, but you can play them for as long as you keep your Xbox Live Gold or Game Pass Ultimate subscription. For Xbox 360 games, you can keep them forever, even if you cancel the subscription. You can still claim most of the games offered for this month until November 30, with Swimsanity! being available until December 15.
By Rich Woods
Microsoft's Xbox game streaming might come to smart TVs next year
by Rich Woods
In September, Microsoft launched its Xbox game streaming service for Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscribers. While the idea behind what was originally called Project xCloud was to bring games to all of your devices via the cloud - especially devices that couldn't run the games natively - it's still only available for Android phones and tablets. The company did test it out for iOS, although that got shut down due to Apple's restrictions. It also promised to deliver it on Windows 10 in 2020, but hasn't done so yet.
According to an interview with The Verge, Xbox chief Phil Spencer talked about a new target: smart TVs. Not only that, but Spencer said that we'll likely see game streaming show up on smart TV platforms within the next 12 months.
For some, this eliminates the need for a gaming console. Smart TVs aren't known for their processing power - quite the opposite, actually - but with all of the compute going on in the cloud, you could just download the app and start gaming. Presumably, you'll pair your controller with the TV via Bluetooth.
Microsoft is still working on other platforms though. It's still trying to move forward with iOS by using a web-based system, and the Windows 10 app is in the Store, even if you can't really use it. With game streaming coming to smart TVs, it wouldn't be surprising if set-top boxes weren't far behind, although Apple TV is in the same boat as iOS.