The drama, litigation and tweets continue between Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos and all those space-faring companies. As reported by CNET, Musk told Code conference attendees Bezos should put more effort into "getting into orbit than lawsuits," and that you couldn't "sue your way to the Moon" as Blue Origin allegedly tried when it lost its lunar lander bid.
NASA legal documents have revealed the space agency felt Blue Origin "gambled" with its originally proposed $5.9 billion lunar lander price. Bezos' company allegedly set the price far higher than necessary, expecting (hoping?) NASA to award the contract and negotiate a lower cost. Further, it assumed NASA would get the full funding from Congress needed for that initial price. That didn’t happen.
Blue Origin’s VP Megan Mitchell told The Verge the company rejected NASA's views. She felt it made a "great offer" and that it disagreed with how NASA had framed its bid.
An Amazon representative also got in touch with Engadget to remind us that SpaceX has a "long track record" of suing the US government over contracts and other decisions. Yes, we’re aware.
In the end, SpaceX’s lower bid of $2.9 billion was picked by NASA, despite Blue Origin’s subsequent challenges and a last-minute $2 billion bid — almost a third of its original proposal.
— Mat Smith
New look, same tricks.
Valentina Palladino puts the latest Fitbit through its paces. Don’t expect any major shakeups, but we do get a more modern fitness tracker. Not only is it thinner, lighter and less bulky than the Charge 4 but it now has some features previously reserved for Fitbit’s full-fledged smartwatches, the Versa and Sense. At $180, you will pay a premium for those updates.
Disney+ will have one more big show before 2021 is over.
Disney vowed The Book of Boba Fett would premiere this December, and it's making good on its promise — barely. It’s revealed the Mandalorian spin-off will debut December 29th on Disney+, replete with a little bit of teaser art you can see above. We’d explain more, but spoilers abound. For everyone already caught up with The Mandalorian, click on.
You look familiar, Alexa.
If you were following along with all the Amazon product announcements yesterday, you might have experienced a dose of tech deja vu. Cherlynn Low felt exactly that. With products that borrowed heavily from the likes of Fitbit, Nest (both Google properties now), as she put it, Amazon's biggest innovation increasingly seems to be: being cheap. Aside from that robot.
The company also revealed $250 ANC headphones promising 30-hour battery life.
Sony's flagship noise-canceling headphones and tech-filled true wireless earbuds have both been updated for 2021. Now, the company's more affordable options are getting the same treatment. With the WF-C500, you can pick up a solid set of true wireless earbuds capable of handling immersive 360 Reality Audio for $100. And if over-ear noise-canceling headphones are more your vibe, the WF-XB910N pairs ANC (active noise cancellation) with 30-hour battery life for $250.