June 12, 2024

Mikayla Macfarlane

Serving technology better

Netflix’s next big thing is branded retail stores

3 min read
Netflix’s next big thing is branded retail stores


Netflix is reportedly planning to open several bricks-and-mortar venues, called Netflix House. The stores will sell merchandise for hit Netflix shows, hopefully of a higher quality than that Target Squid Game tee you sleep in. Talking of Squid Game, the two initial locations will reportedly feature obstacle courses based on the hit show, entirely missing the point of the show’s scathing view of modern capitalism.

There will also be rotating hit-show art installations and live performances to excite fans. Additionally, an in-house restaurant will serve themed cuisine and drinks from Netflix’s food-based reality shows. I can’t get enough of themed restaurants, so count me in. The first two will be in the US, but more will appear across the world.

Netflix has dabbled in real-world events and venues before. It opened pop-up experiences across the planet to celebrate shows like Stranger Things and many of its reality shows. In the UK, Netflix’s Stranger Things: The First Shadow theater production will begin performances at the Phoenix Theatre in London this November.

— Mat Smith

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That was the last major roadblock for the merger.

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The UK’s antitrust regulator has given Microsoft the green light to buy Activision Blizzard for $68.7 billion. The regulator called Microsoft’s concession to sell cloud gaming rights to Ubisoft a “gamechanger that will promote competition.” With the last major obstacle out of the way, the Competitions and Markets Authority (CMA) has now largely cleared the path for the companies to close the biggest merger in gaming history. The decision was widely expected after the watchdog said in September the company’s revised merger agreement “substantially addresses previous concerns and opens the door to the deal being cleared.”

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Three areas are getting the X-Class upgrade to start.

Comcast is upgrading its residential cable internet service to offer upload and download speeds of up to 2 Gbps through decades-old coaxial cables. The company says it’s the first ISP in the world to offer multi-gigabit symmetrical speeds to customers through DOCSIS 4.0 technology, which it’s powering through the Xfinity 10G network. Comcast has been working on this technology for several years, and it aims to offer 2 Gbps symmetrical service in more than 50 million homes by the end of 2025.

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Finally, some groundbreaking science.

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A global team of researchers investigating the statistical and physical nuances of coin tosses worldwide concluded that a coin is 50.8% likely to land on the same side it started on. The authors of the new paper conducted 350,757 flips, using different coins from 46 currencies to eliminate a heads–tails bias between coin designs. (They also used a variety of people to rule out biased flipping techniques.) Regardless of the coin type, the same-side outcome could be predicted at 0.508, which rounds up to 49/51 odds.

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The Swedish capital joins other low-emission zones in Europe.

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