ICYMI: the week's 7 biggest tech stories from WWDC 2024 announcements to Disney Plus to the Google Pixel 6a being laid to rest

A Google Pixel 6a next to the WWDC 2024, Disney Plus and Hulu logos
(Image credit: Google / Apple / Disney / Hulu)

In case you missed the last week in the busy world of tech we’re here with your weekly update that’ll catch you up to speed on all the most important stories.

This week we finally got a date for Apple’s WWDC 2024 event – which might very well be the most important conference in Apple’s history. We also saw some weird creations from OpenAI’s Sora bot, got to hear some impressive ANC earbuds, and even witnessed the marriage of Disney Plus and Hulu.

To find out about these, and the other biggest stories of the week scroll down this page – and be sure to check back next Saturday for another quickfire round-up.

7.  Apple WWDC 2024 was announced for June 10 

The WWDC 2024 Logo

(Image credit: Apple)

Apple’s next Worldwide Developer Conference got a date this week – and it’s due to land on June 10, 2024. During the opening keynote we expect to get our first look at Apple’s next batch of software updates – iOS 18, iPadOS 18, and macOS 15 – as well as some hardware reveals – perhaps new Macs, a new Apple silicone chipset, or maybe even a Vision Pro successor (though that seems unlikely).

One reveal that seems all but certain is the announcement of Apple’s big generative AI plans. While it hasn’t said anything specifically, Apple's senior VP for marketing Greg Joswiak gave a less than subtle hint with a Tweet saying of WWDC 2024 “It’s going to be Absolutely Incredible!” – note the capitalization of Absolutely and Incredible.

We’ll have to wait until June to know what’s in store, but WWDC 2024 looks set to be an Apple event you won’t want to miss.

6. OpenAI wowed us with Sora videos

Air Head

(Image credit: OpenAI / shy kids)

If you’re like us (and who isn’t?) you’ve been watching OpenAI Sora videos on TikTok with an increasing level of wonder and worry. The company responsible for DALL-E and ChatGPT has been posting all manner of bite-sized video creations that, if they weren’t so other-worldly, would look as if they were filmed in a real world. Put simply, this prompt-based generative AI video tool is unlike anything we’ve seen before, and no one really knows what it’ll do to the film, television, and animation industry.

With an apparent nod to that concern, OpenAI recently opened up Sora to a set of independent artists and creators. Instead of throwing their hands up and running away in fear for their livelihoods, they created a set of unforgettable short films, including one that might rival an Oscar-winning short (okay, a very short film). You just have to see these AI-generated films to believe them. We guarantee you’ll be shocked and a little entertained. It won’t be long, we think, until Sora is credited as the cinematographer on a full-length film.

5. The Samsung Galaxy Ring dropped another big launch hint

The Samsung Galaxy Ring sitting on a pale surface

(Image credit: Samsung)

Sometimes it feels like the Galaxy Ring is launching in slow motion, but the wearable inched closer to lift-off this week when it was spotted inside the battery widget on Samsung phones.

This didn’t really tell us anything new about the Oura rival, other than hinting that it’s on track for a full launch – most likely in July alongside phones like the Galaxy Z Flip 6. But it got us excited about the Galaxy Ring’s potential again, particularly for sleep tracking. If all goes well, it could be one of the gadgets of the year.

4. Hulu officially merged with Disney Plus

Disney Plus app featuring Hulu

(Image credit: Disney)

Hulu and Disney Plus have officially tied the knot. Now in the US alongside hubs for Marvel, Star Wars, Pixar, and National Geographic you’ll see a Hulu option that’ll show you shows and films from the Hulu catalogue.

Of course, to watch this content you’ll need to pay for a Hulu subscription. A Disney Plus and Hulu bundle will start at $9.99/month for the standard subscription with ads (just $2 more than Basic Disney Plus). Meanwhile, you’ll pay $19.99/month if you want a Premium subscription to both services that offers 4K video and no ads.

Just note that some shows – like Modern Family and Love Island – won’t appear in Disney Plus right away thanks to “content licensing restrictions” per Variety. It’s unclear when these restrictions will stop getting in the way of Disney's new one-stop streaming service shop, but we hope it’s soon. 

3. Nikon launched a versatile zoom lens

Nikon Z 28-400mm f/4-8 VR in the hand

(Image credit: Nikon)

We get the occasional 10x optical zoom lens for DSLR and mirrorless cameras, but 14x? That’s unheard of, until now. Nikon dropped the new Z 28-400mm f/4-8 VR, which looks like a superb all-in-one zoom lens for its full-frame mirrorless cameras such as the Nikon Z6 II. Its wide end covers shooting everyday observations and landscapes, its telephoto setting is ideal for distant wildlife and landmarks, and its close-up photography skills are super impressive thanks to its close minimum focus distance. 

At 725g it’s pretty compact, too, ideal for your travels. The lens also comes equipped with 5 stops of image stabilization which is exactly what you’ll need for those telephoto snaps. It won’t be as sharp as a prime lens, but the 28-400mm could just be the last Nikon lens you ever buy.

2. Cambridge unveiled its first-ever noise-cancelling earbuds

The Cambridge Audio Melomania M100

(Image credit: Cambridge Audio)

The company that launched one of our all-time favorite sets of earbuds (namely the 2021-issue Melomania 1 Plus) is back with a new earbuds proposition – and the fact that they’re CA’s first noise-canceling option isn’t even their biggest selling point.

The firm has actually launched two models: the regular Melomania M100 and a limited edition Melomania M100 How High Edition. The latter comes in a bright yellow case that's an homage to the music video for The Charlatans' hit How High, in which singer Tim Burgess wore a glorious bright yellow mackintosh. But both products come with a veritable ace up their sleeves: the slinky vocal stylings of Matt Berry, aka Steven Toast (Toast of London/Toast of Tinseltown), aka Lazslo (What We Do in the Shadows). That’s right, Matt Berry will purr ‘Noise canceling’ or ‘Transparency’ in your ear as often as you’d like, for the princely sum of £169 (about $219 / AU$326). If that doesn’t make Apple nervous, we don’t know what will.

1. Google pulled the plug on the Pixel 6a

Pixel 6a with Samsung Galaxy S6 and Pixel 4 XL

(Image credit: Future / Philip Berne)

This week Google unceremoniously killed off the Pixel 6a – with the budget smartphone being pulled from all of its official online stores all over the world. Even the official protective case has disappeared from the digital shelves.

Of course, you can still buy the device from third-party retailers, but you might not want to as we believe this is a sign that Google is planning to launch the Pixel 8a very soon.

Lots of leaks have been teasing the 8a in recent weeks – suggesting it could be pricier than the Pixel 7a, and that it’ll likely use the same Tensor G3 chipset as the Pixel 8 – so it seems possible that a new Google handset is on the way. 

We might have to wait a little while for more details though, Google’s next official event isn’t until I/O 2024 which kicks off on May 14.

Hamish Hector
Senior Staff Writer, News

Hamish is a Senior Staff Writer for TechRadar and you’ll see his name appearing on articles across nearly every topic on the site from smart home deals to speaker reviews to graphics card news and everything in between. He uses his broad range of knowledge to help explain the latest gadgets and if they’re a must-buy or a fad fueled by hype. Though his specialty is writing about everything going on in the world of virtual reality and augmented reality.

With contributions from