Fully Charged: Netflix making Planet Earth sequel in 4K, plus Nokia buys Alcatel-Lucent

All the tech news tidbits you need to get the day started

Netflix funding Planet Earth sequel in 4K

BBC’s Planet Earth (pictured) was one of the first true showcase productions for HD video and Blu-ray, showing an ultra-crisp and stunning side of nature we hadn't seen before. And a new successor could do the same for 4K resolution in a few years’ time.

Netflix announced that it’s teaming up with the production team behind Planet Earth (Silverback Films) and the World Wildlife Fund to create a new series entitled Our Planet, an eight-part look at never-before-filmed areas of the globe. Finding and shooting that footage is a massive undertaking, which is why the series is being announced now for a 2019 debut.

Our Planet will inspire millions of people around the world by showcasing the planet’s species and most fragile habitats through a visionary series and cutting edge multimedia storytelling,” said Colin Butfield, executive producer at the WWF. If you’ve seen Planet Earth on a properly impressive screen, then you surely know to be extremely excited for this.

[Sources: WWF, Variety]

Nokia buys Alcatel Lucent

Nokia just can’t sit still, can it? After selling its mobile phone hardware business to Microsoft and revealing an Android-powered tablet, the Finnish company has now paid 15.6 billion Euros (£11.25 billion) for French telecom hardware maker Alcatel-Lucent. The acquired company's Bell Laboratories comes along with the deal.

It’s important to note that this deal doesn’t include Alcatel-branded smartphones and watches; that hardware came from a deal with Chinese company TCL, which will take over the entire line. Instead, this is a move that will let Nokia concentrate on making the hardware that could power the next generation of mobile networks. In fact, Nokia is looking into selling off the HERE Maps business, among other strategic options, so the company’s brand could soon become a lot more focussed.

[Source: Nokia via Engadget]

Sky’s Buy & Keep expands to non-subscribers

There’s an absolute abundance of digital retailers willing to sell you HD movie rentals in an instant, but the Sky Store has something distinctive in the mix: a Buy & Keep feature that lets you rent a digital version immediately, and then receive a DVD copy by post that’s yours to own.

And it’s not just for Sky customers anymore: as of this week, non-subscribers can use the Sky Store app or Skystore.com, as well as an app on Roku, YouView, and Now TV. New releases - including The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 and Paddington - go for £13.99, while older films sell for £7.99.

[Source: Sky Store]

Power Mac G4 turned into a martini bar

Your decade-plus-old Apple Power Mac G4 probably can’t keep up with today’s modern computing demands, but with some careful modifications, it can potentially keep up with your booze-drinking needs. Introducing the Appletini Bar.

It’s the work of Ross Mackert, a Minneapolis, Minnesota industrial designer who retrofits the old towers with a wood panel, mirrored surfaces, and plenty of room to house a couple martini glasses and a shaker. And he’s taking commissions if you have a Power Mac G4 of your own that could use a second life. Check out the full profile on his work at the source link below.

[Source: Macworld]