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Ford's Pre-Collision Assist in testing

Automakers like Subaru and Volvo have had automatic anti-collision braking for a while, but what if you're a Ford fan? You won't have to wait long. The Blue Oval has revealed that it's adding its own smart braking system (Pre-Collision Assist) as an option for new cars, starting with the 2015 Mondeo sedan's launch in Europe this year. The technology is familiar, but it should be enough to prevent or mitigate collisions during the daytime. A combination of a camera and radar helps recognize upcoming cars and pedestrians; the vehicle will warn you about potential accidents, and will also brake as much as necessary if it believes you're in imminent danger. While the assistant isn't a true substitute for a keen eye and quick reflexes -- at least, not right now -- it's good to have that additional safety net.

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Denon Heos 5 and Sonos Play:5 speakers

If you thought Denon's Heos wireless speakers were a little too similar in purpose to Sonos' range, you're not alone. Sonos has sued D&M Holdings (the company that owns Denon) for allegedly violating "at least" four patents. The audio gear maker accuses the Denon team of making "little to no effort" to distinguish its speakers -- while they look different and have more inputs, the core concept is supposedly the same. Sonos says it's only asking for Denon to come up with "new ideas," and won't chase after royalties if the two sides can reach an agreement. It's not clear whether or not Denon plans to fight back, but it tells VentureBeat that it takes the lawsuit "very seriously" and will have a full response soon.

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If you've ever wanted to cobble together a really wicked EDM track comprised mostly of sound bites from NASA's Mercury missions, well, now's your chance. Everyone's favorite beleaguered space agency has been posting a treasure trove of audio clips that span the space age to its SoundCloud account (just in time to post them in form of Twitter's new Audio Cards), and they're really worth a listen.

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IFixit pries open the iPad Air 2

It's safe to say that you don't buy most Apple devices these days with the expectation that you can open them up, and it looks like the iPad Air 2 is no exception. Do-it-yourself repair shop iFixit has torn down the new tablet and found that it's even tougher (or at least, more expensive) to fix than its predecessor in a few respects. That bonded display may be great for cutting back on reflections, but it increases the risk of breaking the panel when you're prying things open -- and it'll cost more to replace if you do break it, since you can't separate the glass from the LCD. Problems from last year persist, too, such as the use of glue to hold seemingly everything together instead of clips or screws. Another change from its predecessor is the battery -- the 27.62 Wh unit is smaller than the original Air's 32.9 Wh capacity, although a more efficient design should keep battery life close between the two. Is any of this a deal breaker if you're set on getting an extra-slim iPad? Probably not, but it's something to consider if you normally prefer to fix gadgets at home instead of taking them back to the store.

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So, you put in for the time off from work to hit December's PlayStation Experience event in Las Vegas. The next logical step, of course, is buying tickets and come Friday you can do just that. As previously reported, a single day pass will set you back $50, and it's $90 for a two-day ticket to get in Sin City's Venetian Hotel. In a video on the PlayStation Blog, the outfit touts some "400,000 square feet of PlayStation" will be open to the public in addition to showing brief snippets of footage from The Order: 1866 and what looks like the follow-up to Dark Souls, Bloodborne. So those are likely two of the games you'll get some hands-on time with if you attend. What else is going on there? Panels with developers and Sony employees and such, including Capcom's Yoshinori Ono, who's perhaps best known for his work on the Street Fighter series. Feel like playing gumshoe for more clues? The teaser clip below should provide ample opportunities.

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Xbox Music on a Surface tablet

If you're hooked on Xbox Music's free desktop-based listening, you're going to have make some backup plans very shortly. Microsoft has announced that it's dropping the no-cost web and Windows streaming option as of December 1st; after that, you'll have to pay for a Music Pass if you want all-you-can-eat tunes beyond the 30-day trial period. The company claims that it's refocusing Xbox Music to make it the "ultimate music purchase and subscription service," although it's not elaborating on what that entails. Suffice it to say that Microsoft has a lot of competition in the free music space. Its main rival, Spotify, has over 30 million free users worldwide on a wider range of platforms -- it wouldn't be easy for Microsoft to challenge that lead using the free tier you know today.

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Xiaomi's a force to be reckoned with in China -- its new phones routinely sell out online in seconds -- but its influence is steadily growing outside its native home. That's why the company's infrastructure has been quietly shifting these past few months, and VP/former Googler Hugo Barra pulled back the curtain on what Xiaomi's been up to. Long story short: it's moving user data around the world, not only to make sure its services work better, but also to better protect its users' information.

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What's stopping you from creating the first killer Kinect 2.0 hack? Well, now that Microsoft's released the do-all sensor's SDK to the public for free you don't have many more excuses. The software development kit is available without any fees and what's more, you can now put any finished apps up for sale on the Windows Store as well. Just like that! To help developers along even further, Redmond is releasing an adapter that makes the Xbox One Kinect play nicely with a Windows 8 PC. Meaning, they won't have to use a hack to create a hack (or buy a redundant Windows Kinect). The $50 USB 3.0 dongle not only brings price parity between the two previously separate cameras, but it's another instance of Microsoft reversing a previous hardline policy to better suit its customers too. Now, get out there and get cracking -- the hardware giant already has a head start on you.

Update: Developer Ubi Interactive, known for large-screen gesture control installations, has posted a trio of brief, new videos demoing some fresh uses for the Kinect 2.0. We've embedded them below.

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Microsoft Torque on a Samsung Gear Live

Slightly irked that you have to say "OK Google" whenever you want to use voice search on your Android Wear smartwatch? Microsoft, of all companies, is coming to your rescue. The developer is leading a trio of experimental Android releases with Torque, an app that lets you start a Bing search just by twisting your wrist; you only have to speak when you're asking your question. You'll get optimized output for certain kinds of search results, including maps, stocks and weather.

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Inside An AT&T Store Ahead of Earnings Figures

It's no secret that the US wireless market is saturated, and that most people who want a mobile device have already purchased one by now. Naturally, this means that the national players in the industry are looking for other points of revenue to aid future growth. AT&T is proving that it's one of the most successful in this venture by announcing today that it's activated a heap of connected devices last quarter -- to the tune of 1.3 million. That's a healthy number, especially since the company accumulated only a tenth of that in the previous quarter. This genre refers to a wide range of gadgets that come with an AT&T SIM card inside, but the most interesting part of this announcement is that over 500,000 of those activated devices come from connected cars.

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