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Samsung rolls out Access upgrade plan for new Galaxy devices

Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge

Samsung is rolling out Samsung Access, a monthly premium upgrade program in the US for users who purchase new Galaxy S20, Galaxy S20 Plus, or Galaxy S20 Ultra phones, the company announced in a blog post.

Unlike its legacy upgrade program, Samsung Access provides additional benefits, including a Premium Care membership, and a premium Microsoft 365 subscription, which includes Word, Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint, and Skype, along with 1TB of OneDrive cloud storage. Another big difference between the new Access plan and the legacy upgrade plan: if you already have a Samsung device, you can’t trade it in to join the new Access plan. The standard upgrade plan allows you to trade in an existing device and put any remaining balance toward a new...

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Fire Emblem: Three Houses is $15 off at Best Buy

Fire Emblem: Three Houses In Fire Emblem: Three Houses, you assume the role of Byleth, a full-time teacher and soldier.

One of today’s best deals is on one of last year’s best games. Fire Emblem: Three Houses for the Nintendo Switch is $45 at Best Buy. This is about as affordable as Nintendo’s own titles usually get. This is also the first time that I’ve personally seen a discount on this game.

Fire Emblem: Three Houses won over several Verge staffers who played through the game multiple times to see each storyline. Even though the gameplay aspect is mostly based in turn-based strategy, the developers stuffed the moments in between with addicting RPG elements, like leveling up your students’ abilities and building friendships. Plus, the character banter and orchestral music are excellent. It’s a must-buy if you’re looking for your next Switch title.

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Vivo announces X50 flagship series with gimbal-style camera

Vivo has officially announced its first flagship phones of 2020, the X50 series. As previously teased, the key feature is the primary camera’s heavy-duty stabilization system, which Vivo variously compares to professional gimbals and chameleons’ eyes. It previously showed up on Vivo’s Apex 2020 concept phone, but the company wasn’t able to show it off in person due to the COVID-19 pandemic; now it’ll be shipping on commercial devices.

The highest-end model is the X50 Pro+, which uses Samsung’s new 50-megapixel 1/1.3-inch ISOCELL GN1 sensor for the primary camera. The gimbal system makes use of an on-screen “radar” that depicts the lens’ movement and indicates when a shot will be stable. The X50 Pro+ and X50 Pro also include periscope...

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The Last of Us Part II isn’t just Naughty Dog’s most ambitious gam

The Last of Us Part II’s high-contrast mode.

A look at how the studio is trying to expand the audience for the PS4 game

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Samsung’s rotating mobile-friendly TV goes on sale for $1,999

Images: Samsung

Samsung’s Sero TV, which rotates between landscape and portrait orientations depending on what kind of content you’re watching, has gone on sale in the US and UK. Samsung says that the 43-inch TV is available for $1,999.99 / £1,599. That’s a lot considering the TV’s relatively small screen size, but you’re still getting a 4K QLED panel.

The Sero has been available in Korea for a little while now, but back at CES 2020, Samsung announced that it would be bringing the TV to the US and other global markets. The thinking is that the TV’s portrait orientation will mean it’s better at showing Instagram stories, TikTok videos, Snapchat content, and any other videos typically shot vertically rather than horizontally.

Images:...

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Users discover wallpaper that can crash some Android phones

Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge

A bug in Android means that setting a certain image as your phone’s wallpaper could be enough to crash it. The issue gained widespread attention over the weekend after leaker Ice Universe tweeted the image that causes the issue, and the bug has since been verified by 9to5Google and Android Authority. Ice Universe says that the bug affects Samsung handsets in particular, but it’s also been replicated on Google Pixel phones, among others.

On affected phones, setting the photo as your wallpaper causes a handset’s screen to immediately start turning on and off, making it unusable. Rebooting a phone won’t fix the issue. 9to5Google reports that you can restart your phone into safe mode and delete the image file as a potential fix, but Android...

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Microsoft is blocking the Windows 10 May 2020 Update on lots of device

Illustration by William Joel / The Verge

Microsoft is preventing a large number of devices from updating to the Windows 10 May 2020 Update. While the software company released the update last week, Microsoft has quietly acknowledged that there are a number of known issues preventing the update from being installed on a variety of PCs.

Microsoft has a list of 10 issues it’s currently investigating, and 9 of them have resulted in a “compatibility hold” which stops the Windows 10 May 2020 Update from being installed via Windows Update. One issue involving unexpected errors or reboots with always-on, always-connected devices, affects devices like Microsoft’s Surface Pro 7 or Surface Laptop 3.

If you’ve been checking Windows Update for the May 2020 Update and not seeing anything,...

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Reddit and Twitter join the fight against US demands for visa applican

Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge

Reddit and Twitter have filed supporting evidence in a lawsuit against the US government, which challenges the requirement that nearly all visa applicants submit their social media handles for scrutiny.

The companies argue that this requirement will “unquestionably chill a vast quantity of speech” and that it “violates the First Amendment rights to speak anonymously and associate privately.”

“Those guarantees are deeply rooted in this nation’s history, which has long cherished anonymity’s role in guaranteeing a robust marketplace of ideas — one where speakers can choose to keep their identity and their associations private as ‘a shield from the...

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Pixel Buds users are reporting Bluetooth connection issues

Photo by Chris Welch / The Verge

Owners of Google’s new Pixel Buds are reporting a variety of connection issues with the true wireless earbuds. 9to5Google reports that issues have been raised on Google’s support forums as well as in a number of Reddit threads, and the problems have been replicated on review devices held by DroidLife, 9to5Google, and our own pair here at The Verge.

For the most part these sound like typical Bluetooth connection issues. On our pair, for example, we’ve found that both earbuds will drop their connection simultaneously, before the connection drops from each individual earbud in turn. Over at DroidLife, Kellen Barranger says the earbuds’ connection dropped if he cupped his hand over his ear, but that the buds were otherwise fine in everyday...

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Sennheiser’s limited edition HD 25 headphones have a pop of retro co

Image: Sennheiser

In celebration of the company’s 75th anniversary, Sennheiser is releasing a limited edition version of its HD 25 headphones. While they usually feature a nondescript all-black design, the limited edition will come with an extra pair of bright yellow ear pads inspired by Sennheiser’s other iconic headphones, the HD 414. The company is also reducing the price of the headphones while it’s selling the limited edition models, from $149.95 to $99.95.

The catch is that Sennheiser isn’t going to offer a foolproof way of getting your hands on the limited edition model. It’s not selling them separately. Instead, if you want a pair, you’ll have to order a regular pair of HD 25s from Sennheiser’s store and cross your fingers that one of the limited...

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