Week in Tech: Microsoft fights Sony for E3 crown, Amazon fights Spotify for your ears

Week in Tech
And Samsung gives Apple something to be afraid of

E3 isn't short for Extremely Exciting Electronics, but it should be: the annual Electronic Entertainment Expo is where we get to find out just what fun Microsoft, Sony and Nintendo have lined up for gamers in the coming months.

We've also got the skinny on Samsung's new tablet, discovered Amazon's plans for music streaming, spotted a secret Facebook app and looked at what appears to be the iPhone 6. It's the Week in Tech!

E3: the giants battle it out

The playground chants of "my dad's better than your dad" are back, but instead of dads they're about games consoles: at E3 we saw the Xbox One and PS4 face each other in the playground, yell a bit and give each other dead legs and Chinese burns.

Microsoft showed off all the Halos for Xbox One alongside a new Tomb Raider and - yes! - a new Crackdown, while Sony showed us a white PS4, Little Big Planet 3, Uncharted 4 and - yes! - legendarily brilliant adventure Grim Fandango, remastered and re-released to delight a new generation of gamers.

Sony also introduced what our Scott Alexander described as "the most important product of E3 2014": the PlayStation TV. Imagine an Apple TV that plays games, a world-class console that's cheaper than anything else on the market. It could be a game-changer.

E3: The Goomba, the bad and the ugly

Nintendo "is the tortoise to Micro-Sony's hare," Nick Pino says. It's a shy tortoise too: unlike its rivals, it didn't bother with an elaborate press event at E3, preferring something much more low-key. It's got a brand new game to talk about, the steampunk/strategy S.T.E.A.M., it's launching Skylanders-style figures and it's bringing Mii support to the upcoming Super Smash Bros on Wii U and 3DS.

Amazon gets into the groove

These days you're nobody until you have a streaming music service, and Amazon's the latest big hitter to go all streamy: its Prime Music service offers a relatively titchy 1 million tracks to US Prime customers and works on PC, Mac, iOS and Android. It'll no doubt work on the Amazon phone we expect to see next week too.

Keeping a Tab on Samsung

Samsung has unveiled not one, but two Galaxy Tab S tablets: one with an 8.4-inch screen and one with a 10.5-incher. And those screens aren't ordinary LCDs, either. They're Super AMOLEDs, which means they're bright enough to give you a tan. Samsung's ads pronounce AMOLED as "ahm-led", says our mobile expert Gareth Beavis. "That's going to get annoying," he predicts.

The tablets are extremely thin, very light and available in Dazzling White and Titanium Bronze with US price tags of $399 and $499, and we've got the most in-depth review you can possibly imagine. Beavis's verdict? "My legs hurt."

Oh snap! Facebook's Slingshot slips out

What's white and invisible? That app! No sooner had Facebook's Snapchat rival Slingshot appeared on the App Store than it disappeared again. The reason? Facebook had launched it by accident. An official release is coming soon.

Ain't nuttin' but a G Pad thang

Here's a different kind of three-G: three new G Pads, courtesy of LG. The tablets were "unleashed" - now there's an exciting word - this week in three different sizes: seven inches, eight inches and 10.1 inches. The little one is for "optimum mobility", the big one for "delivering a media-focused experience" and the in-between one for swatting wasps or something.

Has Lin leaked the iPhone 6?

Remember Jimmy Lin, the Taiwanese driving and movie star who was waving an iPhone 5C about before it was actually launched? He's at it again, and this time he appears to have an iPhone 6. As John McCann explains, as Lin's previous leak was spot on, "hopes are high that he's managed to repeat the trick this year."

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