NASA says it will pay private companies to gather Moon rocks

Patrick
Enlarge / A total lunar eclipse begins in 2010.

NASA

NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine announced Thursday that the space agency will seek to purchase between 50 and 500 grams of lunar regolith from one or more commercial providers.

In its newly issued “request for quotations,” NASA is asking private companies to submit bids for the work. As part of the competitive process, NASA may select one or more companies but will only pay the bulk of the contract price—80 percent—upon delivery of the materials.

NASA has made one important concession as part of its contract, allowing that “delivery”

Microsoft Surface Duo review: Prototype first, product second

Patrick

Microsoft’s new “foldable” phone — the Surface Duo — is certainly different. While most of the foldable market has been defined by flexible devices that can seamlessly transition from small to big or vice versa, Microsoft believes in breaking your focus into two distinct windows.

The Surface Duo is a dual-screen device more than a foldable one, though it does fold almost perfectly in half when closed, leaving a clean booklet of hardware that is an impressive feat of engineering.

But what are the use cases for a dual-screen device? Are two separate displays as useful as one expandable

All that is old is new again

Patrick

Generally, new tech arrives when there’s, well, new tech. Software typically just comes along for the ride. With the new Huawei Watch GT 2 Pro it seems to be the other way around: Huawei had some new software ready and released a watch on which to show it off. There are precious few differences between the Huawei Watch GT 2 Pro and the GT 2 or 2e before it. Let’s dive into our Huawei Watch GT 2 review.

Huawei Watch GT 2 Pro review notes: I’ve been using the GT 2 Pro for a week, mostly on software version 10.0.1.64.

Huawei FreeBuds Pro review: Keeping up with the competition

Patrick

Wireless earbuds are one of the most dynamic product categories in consumer electronics today. From budget players to luxury brands, everyone is releasing their own slightly different take on the concept, giving buyers a dizzying array of choices.

Also read: The best true wireless earbuds

Following last year’s FreeBuds 3 and their cheaper variant FreeBuds 3i, Huawei is back with the FreeBuds Pro. These true wireless earbuds don’t stand out through huge new features, but they do keep up with the competition. And by “competition,” we mainly mean Apple’s AirPods Pro, which are the obvious source of inspiration for

A year later, Amazon’s voice assistant coalition still does not include Apple, Google, or Samsung

Patrick

Last September, Amazon announced a voice assistant alliance ahead of its yearly fall event with the goal to ensure smart devices are compatible with multiple digital assistants concurrently. Nearly a year later, the coalition has over 70 companies pledging support, including Facebook, Garmin, and Xiaomi, which recently joined. Yet, Amazon’s biggest rivals in the voice assistant space — Apple, Google, and Samsung — have yet to join.

Amazon’s Voice Interoperability Initiative’s goal is to have companies create smart devices that support multiple voice assistants like Alexa or Cortana concurrently. But without Apple, Google, and Samsung’s voice assistants (Siri, Google

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