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Amazon’s Omni Fire TVs are up to 46 percent off right now

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Amazon has kicked off the lead up to this year’s Prime Day by discounting a bunch of Fire TVs. A number of Toshiba, Insignia and Hisense smart TVs are on sale right now, so you could pick up a TV for as low as $90. But we recommend springing for one of the higher-end Omni Series televisions, which came out last September. All sizes are cheaper than usual, but you’ll find the steepest discount on the 55-inch Omni Series 4K TV, which is 46 percent off and down to $300. While many of these TV deals are Prime exclusives, some — including the 55-inch Omni deal — are available to all Amazon shoppers.

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Buy 55-inch Omni Series Fire TV at Amazon – $300

All of the Omni Series sets streaming in 4K and support HDR10, HLG and Dolby Digital Plus — if you want Dolby Vision, you’ll have to spring for the 65- or 75-inch TVs. You’ll get access to streaming services like Netflix, Disney+, HBO Max and others, but you’ll find the real perks come in if you’re already a heavy Alexa user. Omni Series sets have built-in microphones to allow hands-free Alexa access, so you can basically treat the TV as you would an Echo smart speaker. You can ask it to set timers and reminders, check sports scores and more, even when the TV is off. But if that’s not really your thing, you can use the built-in switch to electronically disable the microphones.

As far as connectivity goes, the 55-inch model has three HDMI ports plus one HDMI 2.1 jack with eARC, one USB port and an Ethernet connector. While you could deck the TV out with the soundbar of your choosing, you can also wirelessly pair the TV with Echo speakers to create a more immersive home theater setup. These TVs are clearly best for those who already have a lot of Amazon devices throughout their home, and those who rely on Alexa a lot already. But they’re also good options for anyone that wants a truly budget smart TV. $300 for a 55-inch set is a solid deal, and if you’re looking to spend even less than that, you’ve got options at the $200 and $100 marks as well.

Follow @EngadgetDeals on Twitter and subscribe to the Engadget Deals newsletter for the latest tech deals and buying advice.

All products recommended by Engadget are selected by our editorial team, independent of our parent company. Some of our stories include affiliate links. If you buy something through one of these links, we may earn an affiliate commission.





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Snoop Dogg and Eminem’s Bored Ape music video is here to try and sell us on tokens

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The last couple of weeks have had a lot of bad news for some in the “web3” space, but you wouldn’t know it by looking at announcements in and around the recently-ended NFT.NYC and ApeFest 2022 events. The Bored Ape Yacht Club’s (BAYC) annual event in particular brought in musicians like The Roots, LCD Soundsystem, Haim, Lil Baby, Lil Wayne, and others to perform for its members. On the final day of the event, guests saw the premiere of this video from two of the celebrities who’ve purchased tokens, Eminem and Snoop Dogg.

The video is for a new song, From The D 2 The LBC, that isn’t the most memorable of collaborations and is mostly about smoking weed, but it constantly splices in images of the cartoon apes. Many BAYC members were disappointed in February when both men performed in the Super Bowl halftime show, and despite appearing during an event that featured crypto ads seemingly every few minutes, failed to highlight their web3 endeavors.

The price of ApeCoin has dropped 39 percent in the last month to $4.51 after peaking in late April at more than $23, while Bitcoin and Ethereum’s values are also about 38 percent lower than they were 12 months ago. The Wall Street Journal wrote on May 3rd that “NFT Sales Are Flatlining,” and the numbers haven’t improved overall since then. That report cited an NFT from Snoop’s own collection, Doggy #4292, that sold for more than $33k several months ago. Its owner currently lists the item for sale at a price of nearly $11 million, and while the highest bid at the time of the article was $210, right now someone is offering $1,218. You can see the animation or download high-res still of it from its source website right here, for free.

Despite that, now BAYC owners can point to music that uses characters from the club they spent so much money to join. Plus, they did get to see the real Snoop Dogg perform, not the fake one that some web3 company fooled people with this week during NFT.NYC.

The rappers’ NFTs were both acquired via third parties in December, near the time prices for Bitcoin and Ethereum’s most recent peaks. In a deal executed by the digital agency Six, it cost 123.45 ETH to obtain Eminem’s Bored Ape #9055. At the time, that was worth about $460,000 but it’s now equivalent to around $150,000.

The ape icon associated with Snoop Dogg, #6723, was moved in a transfer from the previous owner’s wallet, not a sale with a price recorded on the blockchain, which was enabled by MoonPay. The company has focused on making it easy for celebrities to buy high-priced NFTs, although it also makes it difficult to track exactly how these celebrity-affiliated tokens were obtained, and who actually paid the much-publicized prices.

Opening up the ability for token owners to use the images of the apes for their creative or business endeavors is a part of the Bored Ape Yacht Club’s strategy, even if it’s unclear why or how that will increase the appeal to people who haven’t spent six figures on an NFT. The way they see it, this is the beginning of a new media industry, with intellectual property rights linked to digital tokens with monetization that trickles down to everyone associated.

The truth about NFTs and copyright is a lot more complicated than that — you can follow our explanation of the state of things right here. But for now, the parties go on, with plenty of things for BAYC owners Yuga Labs to sell to members who are sticking around, like merchandise and promises of land in a metaverse that hasn’t launched yet.





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Paralyzed race driver completes Goodwood hill climb using head movement to steer

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Former Indy Racing League competitor Sam Schmidt is continuing to break new ground for accessible driving technology. The Arrow McLaren SP team co-owner has completed the signature hill climb at this year’s Goodwood Festival of Speed using head movements and his breath to steer — the first time anyone has demonstrated the feature at the UK event. Schmidt drove a McLaren 720S Spider modified by Arrow Electronics to track his head using infrared cameras. He controlled acceleration and braking by inhaling and exhaling through a “sip-and-puff” device. The racer also wore a semi-autonomous exoskeleton concept, the SAM Suit, that helps him walk.

Schmidt became quadriplegic in 2000 when he injured his spinal cord in a practice lap crash. He has long been an advocate for paralysis treatment, and in 2014 partnered with Arrow to drive a Corvette using a combination of head tracking, sip-and-puff and voice controls. In 2016, became the first American with a license to use an autonomous vehicle on highways, using a Corvette to drive in Nevada.

While alternative mobility solutions can return some level of autonomy to those no longer able to operate a vehicle for one reason or another, it’s not entirely clear what role Arrow’s technology might play in the future. We’ve reached out to the company for details on where it sees projects like the SAM heading. Arrow will also be racing against self-driving tech, which is becoming closer to a practical reality, with Level 3 autonomy already reaching public roads. With that said, completely driverless cars (Level 5 autonomy) will take years to arrive.

Update 6/24/22 7:27pm ET: Reached for comment, an Arrow spokesperson told Engadget that while SAM “is not precisely open source” the tech may be “available for future development if Arrow approves.”

All products recommended by Engadget are selected by our editorial team, independent of our parent company. Some of our stories include affiliate links. If you buy something through one of these links, we may earn an affiliate commission.



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Juul can keep selling e-cigarettes, after an appeals court paused the FDA’s ban

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Juul can continue selling its e-cigarettes despite the Food and Drug Administration ordering a ban Thursday, according to the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia (via TechCrunch). In its order, the court says it’s issuing the temporary stay to give Juul time to file an emergency motion, which it can then consider along with a response from the FDA.

The FDA says the reason for the ban is that there’s “insufficient evidence to assess the potential toxicological risks of using the Juul products.” Juul had petitioned for clearance to sell its tobacco and menthol-flavored vape products, but the FDA turned down the application. The regulator notes that it’s only illegal to sell the Juul device and Juul pods, not to own or use them.

According to the court’s order, uploaded by Axios, Juul has until noon on the 27th to file its emergency motion. As the FDA’s website notes, the court says it’s not permitting Juul to sell its vaping products based on the merits of the company’s request — that decision will come later.

In its petition for the stay, which you can read in full below, Juul said that it faced “significant irreparable harm” if it wasn’t allowed to sell its products while it prepared its full motion for a stay. “FDA cannot credibly argue that there is a critical and urgent public interest in removing JLI’s products from the market right now, rather than after this Court reviews FDA’s action,” the company wrote (emphasis Juul’s).



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