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Samsung built a fingerprint security chip for payment cards, employee IDs and more

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Samsung has revealed what it calls the “industry’s first” all-in-one fingerprint security chip (IC) for payment cards. The S3B512C chip reads biometric information via a fingerprint sensor, stores and authenticates data with a tamper-proof secure element (SE) and analyzes it with a secure processor. While primarily designed for payment cards, it could also be used for “student or employee identification, membership or building access,” the company said.

Samsung built a fingerprint security chip for payments, access cards and more

Samsung

Mainly, though, the new chip could make it easier for banks and others to make biometric payment cards. The solution performs in line with Mastercard’s latest security specifications for payment cards, while also conforming to international security standards (CC EAL 6+) for “protecting high-value assets against significant risks,” according to Samsung.

Last year, Samsung announced that it was collaborating with Mastercard on a biometric scanning payment card with a built-in fingerprint reader. It said at the time that the tech would “adopt a new security chipset from Samsung’s LSI business” rather than using Mastercard’s tech, so the new S3B512C chipset appears to be what it was referring to.

The chip could also allow for “faster and safer interactions when making purchases,” Samsung notes. It removes the need for a PIN code and even uses anti-spoofing technology to block fraudulent methods like artificial fingerprints. 

It seems absurd that in 2022, people are still swiping cards and signing for purchases. Given Samsung’s manufacturing chops and influence, however, the chip has the potential to make biometric payment cards more mainstream. Samsung didn’t mention any launch customers or other details. 

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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EA is reportedly seeking a sale or a merger

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Electronic Arts is actively (and persistently) looking for a buyer or another company willing to merge with it, according to Puck. The video game company reportedly held talks with a number of potential buyers or partners, including Disney, Apple and Amazon. It’s unclear which were interested in fully purchasing EA and which were looking to merge, but in case of a merger, Puck said EA is seeking a deal that would allow Andrew Wilson to remain chief executive of the combined company.

EA approached Disney in March in an attempt to forge “a more meaningful relationship” that would go beyond licensing deals, according to the source. However, Disney decided not to push forward, perhaps because it’s currently focused on its nascent streaming service. The publication said the idea of a merger between EA and ESPN, which Disney partly owns, is being floated around in the industry.

Among all the potential partners, however, it was perhaps Comcast who got the closest to a deal. Comcast CEO Brian Roberts reportedly approached Wilson with an offer to merge NBCUniversal with EA. Under the deal, Roberts would take majority control of the merged company, but Wilson would remain chief executive. The people involved didn’t agree over the price of the sale and the structure of the combined entity, though, and the agreement fell through within the last month. 

EA remains a company of its own for now, but Puck said it has become more emboldened in its quest to find a sale or a merger since Microsoft announced that it’s snapping up Activision Blizzard for $68.7 billion, so that might not be be the case for long. It’s worth noting that Sony also revealed that it’s buying Destiny studio Bungie for $3.6 billion shortly after Microsoft announced the acquisition.

EA spokesperson John Reseburg told Puck that the company would not comment “on rumors and speculation relating to [mergers and acquisitions].” Reseburg added: “We are proud to be operating from a position of strength and growth, with a portfolio of amazing games, built around powerful IP, made by incredibly talented teams, and a network of more than half a billion players. We see a very bright future ahead.”

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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Google’s Nest Wifi router and remote points are up to $100 off

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There are many ways to get your weekend started right and, unsurprisingly, one of our favorites here at Verge Deals is with some quality tech deals. Teeing off first is the Google Nest Wifi mesh router system. Wellbots has a few different configurations of the Nest Wifi available with special discounts, including the standalone router for just $119 ($50 off when you use code 50VERGE at checkout), the router and one additional Point to extend the mesh network for $189 ($80 off with code 80VERGE), and the router plus two Points for $249 ($100 off with code 100VERGE).

The important thing here is to pick the right setup for your home depending on how much space you need to cover. The Nest Wifi router by itself is rated to cover up to 2,200 square feet, and adding just one Point to the mix extends that to 3,800. A home with a tricky layout or thicker walls may benefit from a Point or two to extend the mesh network, even if it’s not massive space. There’s a further benefit to adding a Point to the equation — each one acts as a smart speaker for playing music, podcasts, and accessing the Google Assistant. So when it comes down to picking which of these Wi-Fi 5-capable setups is just right for you, consider the factors of coverage, convenience, and cost that are right for you. Read our review.


Google Nest Wifi router bundle

Google’s Nest Wifi router and Point extender have an unassuming design. The router has two ethernet ports, while the Point can be used like a smart speaker. Use codes 50VERGE and 80VERGE for discounts at checkout from Wellbots.

There’s a great deal happening on 1Password’s subscription of services. New customers can sign up for one year of 1Password’s password manager service and get 50 percent off an individual plan or 50 percent off a family plan. Both are billed annually, with the family plan offering especially good value if you require more than one account.

The individual plan deal gets you one personal account with access across unlimited devices that costs just $17.94 for the first year of service, as opposed to the regular $36. As for the family plan, you get five accounts for $30 for the first year instead of the usual $60. We’ve seen these 1Password deals drop as low as 60 percent off before, so while this one is not the very best it comes pretty close. If you’re in need of protecting your personal data with an easy way to generate secure passwords (and we all are), it’s a good way to go.

1Password


1Password subscription (family plan, annual cost)

1Password’s family subscription grants up to five people individual access to 1Password’s services. Typically $5 a month, this limited-time deal brings the price down to $2 a month for up to a year.

If you’ve got an Xbox Series X or Series S and you like to keep lots of games installed at once, their built-in storage can start to feel a lot more limiting than it sounds on paper at first. Many AAA-titles are 60GB or more each, with some like Call of Duty Warzone taking up nearly 100GB on its own. Yes, you can plug in a USB hard drive and offload some games into cold storage, but they have to moved back to the internal SSD when it’s time to play.

So, if you really want more storage, the 2TB Xbox Expansion Card from Seagate, which usually runs $399.99, is currently discounted to $380.90 at Amazon. I know that is still a pretty penny for 2,000GB (or roughly 21 more copies of Call of Duty Warzone), but these little expansion cards rarely go on sale. They’re also just as fast as the internal storage of the Xbox Series X and S, and they plug into the rear of the console — so there’s no ugly USB cable and disc drive sitting alongside your Xbox.

Planning a fun getaway or excursion for the upcoming Memorial Day Weekend holiday? If you want something to help you record some memories while doing fun, outdoorsy activities, the GoPro Hero 10 Black with an additional battery and a dual battery charger is down to $399.99 at Amazon.

This is the latest action camera from GoPro, and while it looks a lot like the previous Hero 9, it’s much faster, thanks to its GP2 processor. The Hero 10 Black captures up to 5.3K 60fps footage and even 120fps slow-mo at 4K resolution. It also maintains that front-facing screen from its predecessor, so framing up your shot when mounting the camera on something like a bike is much easier. One of the few drawbacks to the Hero 10 is its mediocre battery life, but that’s one of the reasons this deal is so great — for about $400 you get an extra battery included, as well as a dual charger to easily keep both packs topped-up and ready. Read our review.


GoPro Hero 10 Black

The GoPro Hero 10 Black offers a new processor making it possible to shoot in 4K resolution at 120 frames per second.

A few more deals to round out your weekend:



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Netflix’s Love, Death and Robots finds the ‘nerd joy’ of adult animation

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What happens when animation geeks get the greenlight to produce whatever they want? You get Netflix’s Love, Death and Robots, an anthology series that’s meant to remind viewers that cartoons aren’t just for kids. You’d think that would be a foregone conclusion in 2022, decades after anime has become mainstream, Adult Swim’s irreverent comedies took over dorm rooms, and just about network/streaming platform has their own “edgy” animated series (Arcane and Big Mouth on Netflix, Invincible on Amazon Prime).

Still, it’s all too common to see the medium being diminished. At the Oscars this year, the best animated feature award was introduced as something entirely meant for kids, prompting the filmmakers Phil Lord and Christopher Miller (The Lego Movie, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse), to demand that Hollywood elevate the genre instead. Even Pixar’s library of smart and compelling films still aren’t seen as “adult” stories.

Love, Death and Robots, which just released its third season on Netflix, feels like a crash course in the unlimited storytelling potential of animation. It bounces from a cute entry about robots exploring the remnants of human civilization (the series’ first sequel, 3 Robots: Exit Strategies, written by sci-fi author John Scalzi), to a near-silent, visually lush game of cat and mouse between a deaf soldier and a mythical siren (Jibaro), to a harrowing tale of whalers being boarded by a giant man-eating crab (Bad Traveling, the first animated project directed by series co-creator David Fincher).

Jennifer Yuh Nelson, supervising director for Love, Death and Robots, tells Engadget that the animation industry has certainly made progress when it comes to telling more mature stories. “Everyone that works in animation has been talking about trying to get more adult things done because it’s [about] the freedom of exploring the whole spectrum of storytelling,” she said. “You’re not trying to do things for a certain age group.”

Love, Death and Robots

Netflix

But, she says, animators were also told the audience for mature projects wasn’t necessarily there. “I think it takes a show like [this] to prove that it can [work], and that makes the whole business and the whole company town basically look around and say, ‘Oh, this is a viable thing that people actually want to see.’”

Series co-creator Tim Miller (Deadpool, Terminator: Dark Fate) also points to the power of video games, which has been telling mature narratives with interactive animation for decades. That’s another industry that was initially seen as toys for kids, but has matured significantly with rich storytelling from indie projects, like Kentucky Route Zero, to big-budget blockbusters like The Last of Us. Games and animation are practically evolving together, with audiences demanding more complex ideas and creators who were raised on earlier generations of those mediums. You don’t get to the excellent Disney+ remake of DuckTales, or Sony’s recent God of War, without a fondness for the simple joys of the originals.

“Animation has grown so much and reflects a taste of the people making it and the people that are watching it,” Nelson says. “It’s a generational shift. People demand a certain level of complexity in their story, and so it’s not princess movies anymore.”

Love, Death and Robots

With every season of Love, Death and Robots, Nelson says that she and Miller are focused on finding stories that evoke a sense of “nerd joy.” There’s no overarching theme, instead they look out for projects with scope, emotion and a potential to be visually interesting. And while none of the shorts have been turned into standalone series or films yet, Nelson notes that’s a possibility, especially since some authors have explored other ideas within those worlds. (I’d certainly love to see those three quirky robots poking fun at humanity for an entire season.)

The series also serves as a showcase for a variety of animation techniques. Some shorts show off meticulously crafted CG, while others like Bad Traveling use motion capturing to preserve the intricacies of an actor’s movement or face. Jerome Chen, the director of military horror short In Vaulted Halls Entombed, relied on Unreal, which makes his piece seem like a cut-scene from a game I desperately want to play. And there’s still plenty of love for more traditional 2D techniques, like the wonderfully bloody Kill Team Kill (directed by Nelson, a far cry from her playful Kung Fu Panda sequels).

Love, Death and Robots

Netflix

“The tech doesn’t replace the art, but the experimentation allows these studios to find ways of doing things better,” Nelson said. “[The show gives] freedom for all these different studios to try their own language.”

Miller has a slightly different view, saying on some level it’s like “tech is the art and they somehow mixed together.” While he agrees with Nelson, who was quick to point out “artists can make art with a stick,” Miller said you’ll still need a certain level of sophisticated technology to create photorealistic stories.

The great thing about an anthology series like Love Death and Robots? Both of those philosophies can co-exist while equally demonstrating the power of animation.

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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