Apple’s ‘notebook upgrade program’ could get businesses new M1 Macs for $30 per month

Mac notebook upgrade program marketing to apparent business partners | Image: @MaxWinebach Apple has apparently introduced a business-only program that enables members to obtain and eventually upgrade computers for a relatively low monthly fee. A tweet from writer Max Weinbach shows an image of Apple’s “New Mac Notebook Upgrade Program” promotional material that popped up for a customer with access to a business portal (via MacRumors).
The credit application makes clear this is all about the Apple M1 refresh The deal appears to be in partnership with CIT Group, a bank for business customers where this landing page for the program shares the monthly rates for different MacBook models — starting with the 13-inch MacBook Air for $30, 13-inch MacBook Pro for $39, 14-inch MacBook Pro for $60, and 16-inch MacBook Pro for $75. Apple…
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Microsoft is selling ugly Windows sweaters again, and this time, it’s Minesweeper

Image: Microsoft Microsoft has launched a new Windows software-themed ugly sweater on its Xbox Gear Shop dedicated to the infamous Windows game Minesweeper.
It’s well done: not only is the whole Minesweeper level shaped like a Christmas tree, but it’s also got mines masquerading as snowflakes and “buttons” to minimize the window or exit the game if you so desire, plus the classic wavy Windows logo that hearkens back to Windows 3.1. (If you’re wondering why the sweater has “1990” remaining mines, that’s a reference to the year Minesweeper first came out.)
Whatchu know about Minesweeper? #UglyChristmasSweater #WindowsUglySweater pic.twitter.com/nWnn42uyw2
— Marques Brownlee (@MKBHD) November 29, 2021 This is Microsoft’s second year of Windows-themed…
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eBay purchases sneaker authentication service Sneaker Con

Image: eBay eBay has bought out sneaker authentication service Sneaker Con, a company that gives sneaker-lovers the peace of mind that the kicks they’re purchasing are real. The acquisition builds upon eBay’s existing relationship with the service, which began back in October 2020 when eBay first launched its sneaker vetting process.
When select sneaker brands are purchased for over $100 on eBay, the shoes go through Sneaker Con before reaching the buyer. There, the sneakers are thoroughly vetted by experts who ensure that the sneakers are authentic and match the description of the original listing.
1.55 million sneakers have been authenticated on eBay The sneakers are then sent to the buyers with tags showing that they’ve been verified. eBay notes…
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The best early Cyber Monday deals on 4K TVs

The best TVs on Sale over Black Friday weekend 4K TVs of all sizes and specs see price cuts several times throughout the year, but the time when we usually see the highest concentration of stellar deals is right now, as Cyber Monday is just around the bend. You’ve ended up in the right place if you’re looking for a TV deal, and yes, that includes people interested in a TV that has every bell or whistle, with the highest contrast ratio and the right features to eke all of the visual splendor from PCs and the latest gaming consoles or something that’s quite the opposite. We’ll be highlighting affordable TVs, too.
Our team at The Verge is hard at work on compiling the best Cyber Monday deals, running the gamut of retailers participating, as well as breaking it down on a category level….
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The best deals you can still get on Google devices

Google’s newest Nest security cameras are on sale, too. | Photo by Dan Seifert / The Verge Google is holding onto most of its deals from Black Friday, and there’s a lot to like if you’re in the market for a Pixel, Chromecast, or Nest device. The search giant kicked off the deals in the Google Store early, and now many of the big-name retailers are offering equivalent deals on the same items. Google even advertises these deals as running until December 1st, a few days after Cyber Monday.
There are still many great Black Friday deals that are live in addition to our retailer-specific roundups for sales at Target, Amazon, and Walmart. If you’re starved for ideas on what to shop for, we also have a variety of gift guides for you to check out.
In the meantime, we have highlighted all the worthwhile Google deals below — such as $50…
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Black Friday 2021 gaming deals: games, accessories, and more

Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge Gamers are served up all kinds of great deals throughout the year. It’s not uncommon for recently released games to drop as much as 20 percent off in the first few months of release or to snag the occasional one-off deal on a controller or headset. But Black Friday and Cyber Monday are something special — a chance to get in on the year’s best offers all at once.
Like 2020, the holidays in 2021 are a bit peculiar, what with the ongoing pandemic and chip shortage. There’s no shortage of games and accessories, but fewer consoles are available for first-time buyers to gift, which means the opportunities to get one are very rare and very popular. Some retailers have even taken to charging subscription fees that offer you a boosted chance of…
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The best early Black Friday deals on Apple devices

The AirPods Pro with the MagSafe charging case are on sale for just $190 at Amazon. | Photo by Chris Welch / The Verge Ironically, if you’re looking for a great Apple deal this Black Friday season, you shouldn’t shop at Apple. That’s because Apple doesn’t typically offer discounts on its new products in-store or on its website, at least outside of the occasional educational discount. Don’t fear, however, as there are plenty of reliable third-party retailers like Amazon, B&H Photo, and Best Buy that do.
Even better, these retailers have already started discounting some of the most popular Apple products ahead of Black Friday, dropping prices on everything from the latest MacBook Pro to the Apple Watch Series 7. Below, we’ve rounded up the best deals we’ve found by category, and we’ll continue to update this piece as more deals are published.
Also, if…
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Battle.net is partially down and Blizzard says it’s a DDoS attack

If you’re not able to sign into Activision Blizzard’s Battle.net, the online service underpinning Overwatch, Call of Duty: Warzone, Hearthstone, Diablo’s online features and more, that’s because it’s experiencing some significant issues — ones which Blizzard is currently pinning on a Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack, where servers get overwhelmed with traffic.
Blizzard is stating that it’s a DDoS both on its verified customer service Twitter account, and additionally in a “Breaking News” item you may see if you’re able to partially sign in.
Screenshot by Richard Lawler / The Verge [#BNet] We are currently experiencing a DDoS attack, which may result in high latency and disconnections for some players….
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Samsung is building a new $17 billion advanced chip plant in Texas

Samsung already has a presence in Austin, Texas. | Image: Samsung Samsung officially announced a new advanced chip-making plant in Texas, that’s estimated to cost around $17 billion and could create 1,800 jobs, as reported previously by The Wall Street Journal. The new plant will be located in the city of Taylor, roughly 30 miles away from Austin, where Samsung has an existing facility. The new site is roughly 1,200 acres in size, making it larger than Samsung’s Austin plant, the WSJ notes.
Image: Samsung Samsung Austin Semiconductor — The new plant will be even larger than this Kinam Kim, the vice chairman and CEO of Samsung Electronics Device Solutions Division says in a statement that “With greater manufacturing capacity, we will be able to better serve the needs of our…
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FCC approves $6 billion Verizon-Tracfone acquisition

Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge On Monday, the Federal Communications Commission voted to approve Verizon Wireless’ purchase of Tracfone in a deal worth more than $6 billion, positioning Verizon to become one of the largest prepaid service providers in the US.
Tracfone is the largest reseller of wireless devices in the US and maintains over 20 million subscribers with more than 90,000 retail locations. Verizon’s Tracfone acquisition combines the largest mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) with the largest wireless provider in the country. When Verizon first proposed the deal last September, the company said that the acquisition would bolster Tracfone’s networks while making low-income wireless services more competitive.
“After rigorous review, the Commission found…
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