If there's one thing tech firms fear, it's an EU investigation: Microsoft is still recovering from its EU anti-trust battle, and now it's Google's turn. Facebook will be under growing scrutiny too as it adds ever more forms of communication to Messenger – but at least it isn't embroiled in a racism row over a face-swapping filter. On a brighter note, we've got some good news for Playstation fans and Netflix addicts. It's Week in Tech!
Is Android a bad robot?
The EU has launched an anti-trust investigation into Android, amid claims that by making manufacturers take all its Android apps Google is using its power to crowd out competitors. As anyone who watched the EU do significant damage to Microsoft over anti-trust claims knows, this could have big implications for the smartphone industry. James Rogerson explains that not only could it cost Google "billions of dollars in fines, but it could also be a big deal for hardware manufacturers and users of Android". Fancy more fragmentation and more expensive phones? That could be the result.
Meet the Neo boss: it's the 4K PS4
While the Xbox 360 faced its final red ring this week, Sony unveiled big plans for the PlayStation: it's making PSN accounts much harder to compromise – and rumours are swirling that it's about to release a 'PS4.5'. The new console, dubbed Neo, will be more powerful than the current PS4 and should support 4K gaming, but there's a risk of fragmentation here: game developers will be asked to make two PS4 versions, one for the existing console and one for the Neo. Dom Reseigh-Lincoln is worried. "Creating a new improved version of your console this soon into a generation will certainly ensure Sony is geared up for the years to come, but it'll be leaving a lot of its own early adopters in the dust," he says.
50 shades of yay
Facebook Messenger has put another nail in the coffin of your phone app: Messenger now enables you to share calls with up to 50 friends at once, which is great if you have 50 friends and like to hear lots of people yelling over each other. "Group calling shows Facebook is dead set on replacing your phone app," Lewis Leong says – and video chat is next. "Facebook plans to add group video calling to Messenger in the future, but has to tackle video stabilization first, since users will almost certainly be using it on their phones."
Netflix: HDR is here, and we might do downloads
There's lots of exciting news coming out of Netflix HQ right now: not only is it bringing 150 hours of HDR content to the service by the end of this year, it seems to be doing a U-turn on offline content too: what was "never gonna happen" in 2014 is now apparently in development. The reason? 4K. Jon Porter explains: "It's not exactly a solid confirmation, but it's nice to see Netflix admit that not everyone has access to the types of network speeds that will allow them to stream pristine 4K video. This will become especially apparent as Netflix moves into countries with more ropey internet infrastructure."
What about Bob?
In an entirely avoidable scandal, Snapchat has come under fire for a new Bob Marley filter that some people think crosses the line into offensive 'blackface' territory. As many people observed on Twitter, the Bob Marley estate has lent its approval to all kinds of old rubbish over the years, so it wasn't a huge surprise to discover that the filter had the estate's full approval. They obviously aren't offended, but lots of people on the internet are.
The new Red Dead Redemption 2 map has leaked, and sources have "confirmed that the game will be set before the events of Redemption, and that the new map is just east of the one that featured in Red Dead Redemption". As Hugh Langley reports, "The overarching theme of Red Dead Redemption was the 'death of the West', so a prequel, rather than a sequel, makes sense."
Robots in disguise
What would happen if you tried to recreate the world's most famous robots in Fallout 4? SJ Azar can tell you, although if we're being pedantic Ripley's power loader from Aliens isn't actually a robot. But if you like robots and you like Fallout, you'll love the bots SJ built.