And the bride wore…. red! Amal Alamuddin stuns in a scarlet gown as she joins family and friends for dinner the night before she becomes Mrs George Clooney

  • George Clooney and his fiancée were joined by family and friends at their rehearsal dinner in Venice
  • The actor and the British human rights lawyer have planned a four day wedding celebration
  • The wedding party dined at the exclusive five-star Belmond Cipriani Hotel on the nearby island of Giudecci
  • Celebrity guests including Matt Damon and Cindy Craword began arriving on Friday 

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Phablet Reviews Before and After iPhone 6 Plus (Everyone Got It Wrong)

Bigger is better. No, wait, bigger is worse. Well, which is it?

Apple’s newly supersized 4.7-inch iPhone 6 and the jumbo, 5.5-inch iPhone 6 Plus are a marked departure for the company, which has clung to the same, small screen size for years. It has gone so far as to publicly deride larger phones from competitors, notably Samsung, even as their sales grew to record highs.

Tech reviewers over the years have tended to side with Apple, in general saddling reviews of the Samsung Galaxy Note – a 5.3-inch device that kicked off the phablet push in 2012 – with asides about how big the darn thing was. To be fair, I’m one of them; I called the 6.3-inch Galaxy Mega “preposterous” last year. I also think the iPhone 6 Plus may be more phone than most people will be comfortable with, although the skyrocketing sales seem to point otherwise.

But does Apple have something special? Can its phones succeed where others have … well, already succeeded? And more importantly, are tech reviewers being fair when they review the iPhone 6 Plus? Here’s what some of them said today, compared with how they reviewed earlier phablets and big phones from the competition.

Related: iOS 8 Review (new features so subtle, there’s an app to help you find them)

Jonathan Geller spun 180 degrees thanks to Apple. But he’s decent enough to admit he was wrong.

2012:  Samsung Galaxy NoteThe most useless device I’ve ever seen … This is a phone, after using it for a few hours, that feels like it is too big to be taken seriously. That’s the end of it. I don’t care if you like large screens on mobile devices, I don’t care if you love Android, and I don’t care if you love 4G LTE — this is a device fit for use only by such a small subset of the human population that I can’t fathom how AT&T and Samsung are putting so much marketing resources behind it.
– Jonathan Geller
2014:  Apple iPhone 6 PlusNow that Apple has finally taken the wraps off the iPhone 6 and the iPhone 6 Plus, and Apple fans are going crazy with anticipation over the largest iPhones ever released, something needs to be said. And that something is, “Thank you, Samsung.” We got it wrong.
– Jonathan Geller

TechCrunch wasn’t sure how it felt about phablets at first. But larger iPhones have clearly convinced them.

2012:  Galaxy NoteUnfortunately, you might look a little crazy with that huge thing up to your face. I found that it was really difficult to get comfortable with the device, never feeling like I had complete control over it as I would with a smaller phone. On the other hand, the mobile video experience offered by the Note can’t really be beat.
– Jordan Crook
2014:  iPhone 6 PlusIn terms of carrying and holding the device, the additional size makes for a less ‘perfect’ ergonomic quality, something the iPhone 6 definitely achieves, but there’s still lots to love about the industrial design of the 6 Plus … For most tasks, I find the iPhone 6 Plus to be a two-handed device – but I also find that I’m absolutely fine with that.
– Darrell Etherington

Related: One size fits all for Apple’s fresh but familiar iPhone 6

The Wall Street Journal / Recode
Lauren Goode is singing a very different song – and is willing to admit it. So too Walt Mossberg, who called the 5.3-inch Note “gargantuan” and the 4.7-inch iPhone 6 as “terrific.”

2012:  Galaxy Note 2It’s still too big for a smartphone … After testing it over the past week and a half, the awkwardness that came with carrying such a large, “notice me” phone outweighed the benefits of it, for me.
– Lauren Goode
2014:  iPhone 6 PlusMaybe I’m getting old, and my eyes are getting worse. Or maybe I’m stuck in Apple’s reality-distortion field (help). But something strange happened this week. I started to like a phablet.
– Lauren Goode
2014:  Walt Mossberg on Galaxy Note and the iPhone 6That iPhone, and its four-inch successor, the 5S, proved very popular. At first, larger, wider phones seemed weird (I even compared holding the first Samsung Note to your face to “talking into a piece of toast.”) But for many people, especially in certain countries, the iPhone’s screen began to seem too small, as competing models appeared with bigger and bigger screens. At first, larger, wider phones seemed weird … the iPhone 6’s 4.7-inch screen is a catch-up feature. But it’s very well done.
– Walt Mossberg

The New York Times / Yahoo
For David Pogue, a 4.8-inch Samsung was great, but so big it needed to be ridiculed. A 5.5-inch iPhone “doesn’t seem bigger than the iPhone 5,” however. He’s clearly adjusted to the scale.

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PlayStation TV Coming to U.S. in October at $99 Price

PlayStation TV Coming to U.S. in October at $99 Price

Available in Japan since last year, the PlayStation TV will go on sale in the U.S. this Oct. 14 for $99.99, Sony announced. The set-top box is due to launch in Europe one month later with a price tag of €99.99.

When connected to a television, PlayStation TV provides access to a selection of PS Vita, PSP, and PS One games, in addition to allowing users to access saved movies, TV shows, and music like any other set-top box.

The system also allows PlayStation 3 and 4 players to pick up a saved game on a different screen thanks to its Remote Play feature.

Aside from the around 700 games available through the service (including God of War, Tomb Raider, and Tekken), three PS Vita games will be provided for free with purchase (Worms Revolution Extreme, Velocity Ultra and OlliOlli).

PlayStation TV has an internal storage capacity of 1 GB (expandable via memory card) and is compatible with the DualShock 3 and DualShock 4 controllers.

In the US, the device will be available in a bundle including a DualShock 3 controller, an 8 GB memory card and The Lego Movie Videogame for $139.99. No bundled offers have been announced so far for the European market.

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Report: Apple Already Preparing to Release iOS 8.0.1 Bug-Fix Update

Report: Apple Already Preparing to Release iOS 8.0.1 Bug-Fix Update

Apple has already cooked up a fix for certain problems discovered in iOS 8, according to blog site MacRumors.

Citing an anonymous source, MacRumors said Tuesday that an iOS 8.0.1 update addresses several key bugs, including problems with the following:

  • call forwarding and freezing when opening Visual Voicemail
  • keypad not showing up to enter iCloud Keychain verification codes
  • videos sometimes not playing on Safari
  • AirDrop support for Passbook passes
  • installation of VPN profiles

Apple released iOS 8 last Wednesday with several new features and refinements. But it didn’t take long for some iOS users to start reporting problems. Conversations on Apple’s support forums and other online sources have pointed to WiFi connectivity glitches, the usual battery drain issue, and slow performance in Safari, among other problems.

The update will likely patch other bugs beyond those cited above, according to MacRumors. So some of the issues reported on the support forums may be resolved as well.

Apple had apparently been readying iOS 8.0.1 even before it launched iOS 8, as the update has already been sent to mobile carrier partners for testing, MacRumors added. No release date has yet been revealed. But if the update is at the carrier stage, then the actual user rollout shouldn’t take too much longer to kick off.

Last year, Apple rolled out iOS 7.0.1 just a few days after it launched iOS 7 in order to fix a fingerprint glitch with the iPhone 5s. Less than a week after that, iOS 7.0.2 came out to patch a bug with the lock screen.

CNET contacted Apple for comment and will update the story with any further details.

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Owners Report That the iPhone 6 Plus Is Susceptible to Bending

Owners Report That the iPhone 6 Plus Is Susceptible to Bending

This story has been updated.

Apple’s iPhone 6 Plus appears to have a hidden feature, though it’s one you might not want to test out. According to a report by MacRumors, Apple’s latest smartphones are susceptible to bending out of shape if kept in your pocket for too long.

MacRumors’ report is based on posts by two of its forum members. The first forum member, Hanzoh, said that he kept his iPhone 6 Plus in his front pants pocket for about 18 hours.

During that time, he said, he drove to a wedding, danced, and sat down for varying periods. Later, when he took his iPhone out of his pocket, he noticed that it had a slight bend at its midsection.

Bent iPhone 6 Plus(HanzohMacRumors)

A second MacRumors forum member, DevinPitcher, claimed that his friend’s iPhone 6 Plus bent after his friend put it in his pocket and got into his car. Both Hanzoh and DevinPitcher provided photos of their iPhone 6 Pluses to back up their claims.

As MacRumors points out, past forum members have seen similar problems with the iPhone 5 and iPhone 5s. Those owners reportedly received replacements for their bent handsets from either Apple or their carriers.

That the iPhone 6 Plus is capable of bending isn’t out of the realm of possibility. The phone is not only Apple’s largest, but it’s also one of its thinnest.

In fact, Lewis Hilsenteger over at Unbox Therapy tried bending his iPhone 6 Plus after reading reports of its flexibility, and managed to put quite the kink in the handset. Though, it took a good amount of force for him to see any results.

Interestingly, Hilsenteger said in his video that he was putting pressure on the center of the iPhone, but it bent closer to the top near its volume keys. That’s also the same area where both of the MacRumors forum members saw their iPhones bend.

All of that is to say, it’s easy to imagine that an iPhone 6 Plus could be bent when an owner bends to sit down with the phone in his pocket.

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Rumor Roundup (Sept. 23, 2014): Sting, Austin Aries, Cesaro and the future of the Bellas

Speculating on the rumors surrounding pro wrestling is a favored pastime of many fans, perhaps second only to actually watching the matches. In this daily column, we take a look at the latest rumors being churned out by the pro wrestling rumor mill.

Important reminder: Rumors are just that — rumors. None of this has been confirmed as legitimate news or fact, it’s just circulating around the pro wrestling rumor mill. Remember, take it all with a grain of salt.

Rumors for the Day:

  • You know that guy, the one from WCW with the face paint?  Sorry, everybody, but with him in the news around yesterday’s 2K15 video game announcement and press conference, The Wrestling Observer and others updated his status with WWE…to say there’s no update.  Merch and video game deal in place, but nothing else.  The Best of Sting DVD release coming out today doesn’t include new interviews with him, and nothing is set-up for an in-ring debut.  WWE is still said to be confident they’ll have him signed for something at WrestleMania 31.
  • Baron Corbin, seen prominently squashing CJ Parker at the last Takeover live special and on last week’s NXT, is supposedly in line for a big push.  He’s been working longer matches at house shows, and been let loose on social media to build his character there for a larger role on the WWE Network show.
  • Rumors of WWE versus the audience continued at Night of Champions.  This time, it was apparently pro-Cesaro signs that were confiscated.  A report floating around says the the guy facing the hard camera side in an El Generico mask handed out “King of Wrestling” signs, and WWE officials took them from fans.  They’re said to have responded to inquires about why folks couldn’t have the signs by saying “you don’t need to know.”  Let the conspiracy theories about Cesaro continue.
  • The Greatest Man That Ever Lived, Austin Aries, may be the latest person out the door at TNA.  As we mentioned yesterday with Gail Kim, A-Double’s contract is up soon and he may not be re-signed, probably because he costs too much and/or can make more money getting his own bookings on the circuit.  He announced recently that he’ll be working the House of Hardcore show on November 15th, but that doesn’t mean he’s leaving the TNA fold, as that’s Tommy Dreamer’s promotion, and Dreamer has been very much in the fold of Dixie Carter’s company over the past year-plus.
  • Nikki Bella’s request that she be called “THE Nikki Bella” and asking why her twin sister didn’t take the Bryan surname on last night’s Raw may be a set-up for Brie to drop the “Bella” and just go with one name.  This, along with her new music, is seen as a means to getting them both over as singles performers.  Maybe somebody should give them individual social media accounts while they’re at it…

If you have heard of any interesting rumors that you’d like to add, feel free to post them in the comments section below. Just remember they are rumors and not confirmed as fact, so please take them as such. Have fun with it.

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