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Gold

Microsoft has always been a fan of charging their Xbox customers a premium to access features including multiplayer gaming, entertainment applications, and Internet Explorer. The company has announced the list of additional new features for Xbox One that will require a Live Gold subscription.

Xbox One will require a paid subscription to access the console’s OneGuide (TV Guide), Game DVR service, Skype, and new SmartMatch service. We aren’t extremely surprised about the news, but now we can confirm what we suspected.

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It is clear that Microsoft intends to go all out for its Xbox One launch day; the company’s “Day One” edition of its console with special limited edition controller and achievement token has already sold out at various retailers including Amazon and Best Buy. Now, the company is introducing preorders for a “Day One” edition of Xbox Live Gold.

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Do you ever play Xbox 360 and wish you had a controller to match the spinning gold rims on your decked out automobile? Well, if you do – you are in luck! Microsoft announced today via Major Nelson’s Blog that an Xbox 360 special edition chrome series gold wireless controller (wow, that is a mouthful) will be released in August for $54.99.

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Manager of the Windows Phone Program, Joe Belfiore in NYC

Tonight we can confirm via two known sources that Windows Phone 8 has RTM’d. For those of you unfamiliar with the term, RTM stands for Release to Manufacturing (aka “going gold") and is one of the final steps in getting the software to market.

We're also told that this RTM date was planned and that Windows Phone 8 is "on time".

Windows Phone 8 codenamed ‘Apollo’ has been in development since 2011. The previous major branch of Windows Phone codenamed ‘Mango’ RTM’d in July 26th, just over one year ago. Bringing along a new core architecture built upon the NT kernel, the Windows Phone 8 OS will allow Microsoft to adopt cutting edge technology and heavily compete with Android and iOS in terms of features and hardware flexibility.

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Looks like Microsoft may be retooling the Xbox LIVE hub a bit for Mango as well, though they are mum on the details at the moment.

The image to the left was taken by us during a MIX11 session today. Denoting Xbox LIVE Gold Status, the change is quite significant from the current version. Our guess is that if you have a Gold account, it will now reflect on the tile. When we asked Microsoft's Andrew Clinick about it, he was very coy giving us a "I have no idea what you're talking about!" with a grin. Real frunny guys!

The second shot to the right, comes courtesy of Long Zheng/iStartedSomething of ChevronWP7 fame and was taken during the keynote (from his Flickr stream). It shows what the nex Xbox Hub may look like, with a smaller list view being shown. What other changes are there? We'll try to find out, but MS seems to not be revealing too much here.

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Mentioned briefly in the introductory video for the latest Dashboard Update (which hit Xbox 360 consoles this past Monday and was officially announced right before the US Launch of Kinect in NYC on Wednesday) the Xbox Live Gold Family Pack is really finally truly here. Not so surprisingly, some confusion and many questions were raised among the users that don't know what to do with multiple Xbox Live Gold accounts and multiple consoles. 

How it will affect their Zune accounts and alter their interactions with each of the services was also a dodgy subject. I recommend reading on if you find any aspect of the new plan confusing, confounding, befuddling, frustrating, or any other disorienting verb. We'll do our best to leave you enlightened and ready to set up an Xbox Live Gold Family Pack.

You may find it's worth it even if you don't have a full family!

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WP7 Rumors: HTC Gold appears on leaked roadmap

What is expected to be one of HTC's first Windows Phone 7 devices, the HTC Gold, has made an appearance on a leaked roadmap for the U.K. Market. Omio.com is reporting that the HTC Gold is due to hit the U.K. markets sometime in November of 2010.

The leaked U.K. roadmap is in line with previous reports from HTC that they will launch a Windows Phone 7 device by the end of 2010. Oddly, the Gold is the only Windows Phone 7 device on the leaked list.

The Gold joins the Monderian as HTC's leading candidates for the Windows Phone 7 market. We've seen signs that the Gold may be headed to Sprint while the Monderian may be headed to AT&T. Could their U.S. release coincide with the U.K. release? Or will the States get these phones first?

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