Connect with us

Virtual reality and Augmented reality have only become mainstream in the past few years, and many companies are starting to offer their take on a fledgling technology that has the potential to really shake up the way we interact with both video games and our daily life. The HTC Vive is a really fantastic offering as far as virtual reality experiences go, but with a lot of competition on the market, does it hold its own with offerings from new players in the field? How does Microsoft’s Hololens compare to the Vive which has already gained some traction? We take a quick look at the two headsets below and let you know which product is worth your attention.

Before we start getting into everything, I’ll be honest and say that these two headsets are difficult to compare. For one, the HTC Vive is strictly a virtual reality system designed to play games and give an immersive environment for other creative applications. The Microsoft Hololens, on the other hand, is marketed as a “pair of mixed reality smartglasses” and focuses instead on Augmented Reality instead of simply Virtual Reality.

It’ll be helpful to distinguish between Virtual Reality and Augmented reality when we make these comparisons because, as I mentioned above, the two headsets don’t necessarily set out to accomplish the same goal (though there definitely is significant overlap).

Basically, Virtual Reality completely immerses you in a new environment and blocks out the rest of the world while Augmented Reality seeks to enhance the world. While virtual reality may trick your brain into thinking you’re batman in a dark alleyway, augmented reality adds overlays and useful tools to your regular vision. It may be difficult to compare these devices one to one because of their different approaches to augmenting or suspending reality, but we can definitely go over the pros and cons of each and give you a sense of which one has us most excited.

Now that we’ve discussed the differences in philosophy when it comes to the two headsets we can actually start comparing them.

Fit and Design

The HTC Vive is the clear winner in this section. While both headsets rest on your head like a hat, the HTC has a harness system that fits the device more securely to your head and distributes load while Microsoft’s Hololens feels more like a slightly unstable crown. The fact of the matter is, though, that they’re both pretty bulky and unwieldy. Like we mentioned above, the technology is still pretty new, so it’s not surprising that we don’t have a super slick and lightweight option that feels like we’re wearing nothing at all. In time we’ll see that, but the HTC Vive is pretty comfortable when it comes to VR headsets, especially compared to the Hololens.

HTC Vive controllers

Field of View

While you can look all around with the HTC Vive, the Hololens keeps your eyes facing strictly forward. The Vive would also take the cake in this section, but it’s important not to discount the fact that the view that Microsoft’s Hololens gives users is more than enough to accomplish its goal. If you’re looking to be completely immersed and to block out the rest of the world, the HTC Vive is the way to go, but given Microsoft’s focus more on the productivity and enhancement side it makes sense that their augmented reality field of view is more limited.


The Vive features a controller for each hand with a variety of buttons while the Hololens relies solely on gestural commands to control the device. I’m going to have to go with the Hololens in this category, as it’s much more intuitive to simply move your hands to do what you’ve set out to do rather than trying to pick up a whole new control scheme. Gamers may be more at home with the Vive, though, and will probably quickly pick up the ins and outs of the control system. It’s definitely possible that the Vive’s control scheme allows for more variable actions than the Hololens does, which makes sense given its focus on gaming (a pretty dynamic form of media), but I’ve got to say that the Hololens is more intuitive when it comes to control.

hololens microsoft

External Accessories / Portability

The Microsoft Hololens is hands down the winner in this section. As we’ve mentioned above, virtual reality and augmented reality technology is still in its infancy, and the infancy comes with a whole lot of wires for the HTC Vive. You have to attached a box to your wall, your Vive to your PC, and you’ve got to lug around two controllers. You essentially need an entire room set up for your Vive whereas the Hololens is completely self-contained. While the Vive is a headset that relies on an external PC to run its games, Microsoft’s offering is a completely self-contained computer that you wear on your head. The Hololens might seem like an obvious purchase, but there’s one major detractor that we’ll look at below.


This is the dealbreaker for me. The Hololens seems really awesome in a lot of ways, but it comes with an enormous price tag that just doesn’t make it realistic for the vast majority of consumers. Virtual Reality systems are already usually the price of a new console or even more expensive, but the Hololens is just on a whole other level. The only product available for the Hololens right now is the development edition which comes at a hefty price of $3000. The system is a self-contained computer so it makes sense that it would be a little more expensive than other VR offerings, but 3k is just kinda ridiculous. The HTC Vive is available for a much more modest $799.


It’s difficult to declare a clear winner in this competition since the two devices set out to accomplish different things. If you’re seeking to enhance your existing environment and want to wear a full PC on your head (and don’t mind shelling out some serious cash) the Hololens might be the way to go. Because of how early in the development process the Hololens is, though, I’m going to have to go with the HTC Vive as a more realistic but still extremely impressive option.

HTC Vive winner





Samantha is very interested in all the latest technological advancements and she loves to show it through her articles. You'll likely find her writing about one gadget or another, but she certainly doesn't shy away from science stuff either.


Spotify is providing refunds for Car Thing as it confronts a lawsuit regarding the malfunctioning of the streaming device





Spotify is receiving ongoing criticism for its choice to terminate support for Car Thing, its in-car streaming device, which was announced in May. According to the company, the device will become inoperable after December 9, 2024. Gen Z users on TikTok are sharing videos to express their dissatisfaction with Spotify’s decision and its suggested measures, such as transitioning to Android Auto or CarPlay. The users point out that they often lacked access to integrated infotainment systems in their cars, which makes them a prime target market for a specialized player like Car Thing.

The streaming service’s in-car device hadn’t been on the market long enough to become outdated. The product was introduced in February 2022 but was subsequently discontinued within the same year. However, the company assured customers who had already purchased units that it would continue to provide support and maintenance. Prior to its release, Spotify CEO Daniel Ek indicated that there was a significant consumer interest in this product. During an earnings call with investors, Ek reported that over 2 million users had registered on the Car Thing waitlist in anticipation of its launch.

While Spotify did not disclose official figures, it is probable that Car Thing did not meet expectations or did not justify further investment in the current challenging economic climate. Spotify, on the other hand, terminated approximately 1,500 employees towards the end of last year. This followed previous rounds of layoffs earlier in the year that impacted hundreds of employees.

Car Thing users, on the other hand, are not concerned with the company’s financial issues; their primary concern is the functionality of the device or, at the very least, receiving a refund for the $90 cost.

As a result, some individuals have attempted to lodge their complaints directly with Spotify by sending direct messages on the X platform using the handle @SpotifyCares or by utilizing different email addresses associated with Spotify that have been shared on Reddit. As a result, certain users have reported that Spotify provided them with multiple months of a premium subscription as compensation for their inconvenience, whereas others have stated that they inquired with customer service and were informed that no reimbursements were being offered.

According to Spotify, they have recently implemented a refund procedure for Car Thing. However, the user must present evidence of purchase in order to be eligible for the refund.

Car Thing users were officially informed about the availability of customer support through a second email sent on Friday of last week, in response to the increasing criticism and dissatisfaction caused by the discontinuation of Car Thing. Within the message, Spotify provides users with the appropriate customer support link to contact the company. The email does not guarantee any reimbursements but states that users can contact us for inquiries.

Although a refund might appease a certain segment of the user population who are dissatisfied with Car Thing, numerous individuals are earnestly imploring the company through TikTok videos and comments on Spotify’s TikTok posts to refrain from rendering their device inoperable. (Indeed, grievances regarding the Car Thing have become so prevalent on Spotify’s videos that the algorithmically generated search recommendation on certain videos is “what is the spotify car thing.”)

“Spotify, I kindly request that you refrain from subjecting me to any further distress.” “I have a strong affection for my automobile,” expressed Carla, a TikTok user known as @carlititica on the platform.

“Depressed,” expressed another user, @nikkilovestech. “They seem to encourage people to use their phone, which is a source of distraction,” she stated in the video description while demonstrating a Car Thing mounted on her dashboard. In her video, she also addressed the issue of electronic waste resulting from the discontinuation of a fully functional product.

Spotify is still facing challenges regarding the discontinuation of Car Thing, despite the introduction of a refund process that has not been widely publicized. According to Billboard, Spotify is currently dealing with a class action lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York. The lawsuit alleges that Spotify deceived customers by selling them a product that would soon become outdated, and then failing to provide refunds. The lawsuit was initiated on May 28th.

While Spotify is unable to provide a comment regarding the lawsuit, a representative did share the following statement regarding Car Thing:

The objective of our Car Thing investigation in the United States was to gain further insights into individuals’ auditory habits while driving. In July 2022, we made a public statement declaring our decision to cease any future manufacturing activities, and now we must bid farewell to the devices altogether. The deactivation of all Car Thing devices will occur on December 9, 2024, giving users until that date to continue using them. To gain further knowledge about the various methods available for listening to Spotify in your car, please refer to the For The Record section. Car Thing users can contact Customer Support for any inquiries by visiting:

While the issues surrounding Car Thing may not impact all of Spotify’s user base, this development coincides with a period when users are already dissatisfied with being required to pay additional fees for features they consider essential to a music service, such as access to lyrics, a feature that Spotify recently made available only to paying subscribers. Furthermore, users are expressing dissatisfaction with Car Thing and are issuing ultimatums to discontinue their subscription to Spotify due to the introduction of paid access to lyrics.

Furthermore, Spotify raised its subscription fees last year, and Bloomberg has reported that another price hike is imminent in 2024.

Continue Reading

Mobile Devices

3 Video Games About Women’s Health





Video games have transcended entertainment to become powerful tools for promoting health and wellness. One notable genre in this realm is fitness gaming, exemplified by titles like Hatsune Miku Fit Boxing, which motivates players to engage in physical activity to enhance their fitness levels. Building on this foundation, developers have ventured into women’s health with games designed to raise awareness and empower players to take control of their well-being. Here are 3 video games on women’s health that provide valuable health information and foster a sense of agency to uplift women around the world.

Tampon Run – Menstrual health

Created by Girls Who Code alumnae Andrea Gonzales and Sophie Houser in 2014, Tampon Run is an old-school 8-bit online game where the main character, Luna, lobs tampons to destroy enemies, who will confiscate the tampons if she lets them pass by. Interestingly, the concept of weaponized tampons is based on a real incident that occurred in 2013, where Texas state troopers confiscated tampons as potential projectiles, but not guns, from visitors observing a vote on abortion restrictions at the Texas State Capitol. The goal of Tampon Run is to destigmatize periods and menstrual products, which, up until recently, have not been properly studied to measure their absorbency, which underscores the need to address menstrual health so that women can get better care.

In between tossing tampons, Luna shares empowering messages about how periods are a natural part of women’s lives and should not be a source of shame or embarrassment. The game is available to play on the Tampon Run website and can be downloaded from the Apple App Store for iOS users.

PCOS Vitality – PCOS

Polycystic ovary syndrome is a complex hormonal condition and the leading cause of female infertility that affects approximately 5 to 6 million women in the US, according to the Endocrine Society. Common features of the condition include having irregular menstrual periods, hyperandrogenism, and polycystic ovaries. Additionally, some studies estimate that up to 88% of women with PCOS are overweight or obese. While there are weight loss programs helping women tackle PCOS, focusing on aspects like lifestyle, symptom management, diet, and other tips for how to lose weight with PCOS, the condition itself remains grossly under-researched. For some women, it may take years to confirm that they have PCOS, as there are other disorders that mimic PCOS signs and symptoms that must be excluded.

The lack of research has extended to a lack of awareness among the general population and is what clinicians from the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland are trying to address with the 2023 game PCOS Vitality. Essentially a learning tool, the game takes users through a simple obstacle course. As you click toward the finish line, you are asked simple trivia questions about PCOS. The game is free to play on Focus Games’ website.

Bound by Blood – Period poverty

Period poverty refers to the lack of regular access to period products, painkillers, or underwear during a menstrual cycle. In the US, where 16.9 million menstruating women live in poverty, two-thirds cannot afford basic menstrual products. Period poverty has also been associated with mental health issues and urinary tract infections.

Available to play on the website, Bound by Blood was created by Jessica Gates in 2017 and aims to educate players about the reality of period poverty. Users take the character of Beth, a homeless woman who wakes up in her car and realizes that she’s started her period. Players then make a series of choices to try to stay as hygienic as possible in spite of lacking resources such as menstrual products and clean restrooms. There isn’t really a way to “win” the game, and it is instead a peek into the reality of life where period products are inaccessible and how this affects women’s quality of life.

Through these games, players not only gain valuable insights into various aspects of women’s health but also find themselves actively engaged in their own well-being. As developers continue to explore this emerging field, the potential for video games to serve as educational tools and catalysts for change in healthcare remains promising

Continue Reading


Despite popular belief, PS4 sales in the UK skyrocketed last year





PS4 sales in the UK climbed by a shocking 633 percent year-over-year in 2023, so apparently the old system isn’t dead yet. The previous year’s very limited supply of the system is likely a major factor in this figure, since the console’s lifespan was drastically reduced because of chip shortages caused by the pandemic. Still, it’s proof that PlayStation’s original platform has unmet demand.

With the very low prices of PS4 software (both in-store and online at the PS Store), this strategy makes a lot of sense. Plus, it’s future-proof, so there’s no harm in stocking up on PS4s while new-gen pricing is still high, since if you decide to switch to a PS5 in the future, you can transfer all of your purchases across. Not to mention that the majority of new releases still come out on the PS4, with several offering free PS5 upgrades.

While the percentage rise may seem huge, real PS4 sales will probably be much lower. It’s a sign that the gadget, which is now a decade old, isn’t completely dead yet, and we expect it to keep receiving maintenance for a while longer. Of course, this is great news for Sony, because the company would rather have PS4 players playing on its last-gen gadget than none at all, even if it would love to have them upgrade to PS5.

Continue Reading