⚡ Welcome to The Weekly Authority, the Android Authority newsletter that breaks down the top Android and tech news from the week. The 181st edition here, with the lowdown on Samsung Unpacked, Android 13, and the OnePlus Nord CE 2 launch date.
📱 I’ve been having fun playing Hidden Folks on Android this week — sort of like “Where’s Wally?” but much more addictive!
Popular news this week
Fed up hearing about non-fungible tokens (NFTs) in gaming? It feels like NFTs are everywhere these days.
Now things have gone too far though and NFTs are more than just apes on a page — they’ve invaded the real estate market. Say what? That’s right, what’s thought to be the first US real estate NFT transaction is happening this week as a house in Gulfport, FL goes up for auction. Bids start at $650,000 ether.
The sale’s being handled by Propy, a real estate tech company that previously sold an apartment in Ukraine owned by Michael Arrington, founder of TechCrunch, as an NFT just last year.
- The NFT replaces the property’s deed by “representing a limited liability corporation that owns the property rights.”
- This in effect means that the winning bidder receives an NFT of a company that owns the house. So you’re buying a company, and the company owns that house. But what are you really buying?
Leslie Alessandra, founder of a decentralized finance company, is the Gulfport property’s current owner and wonders whether NFTs are just hype, or if there’s a real-world application, going on to explain that the auction is designed to stimulate conversation surrounding this. But critics worry traditional real estate law and crypto’s volatility could make NFT-linked real estate a risk in future.
- Technically, nothing much is changing in the sales process. All the standard-issue paperwork and deeds plus title transfers are handled in the same way, alongside the digital sale. So this is really just a gimmick, for now anyway.
- It’s important buyers ensure that their digital purchase confers legal ownership of a home through traditional means, though.
- And there could be legal concerns about who’s on the other end of the deal. What exactly have you taken ownership of? What if real estate taxes aren’t up to date, or if you’re sending payment to somebody in Iran, or other sanctioned countries?
- Buyers will need to do their due diligence or risk things going wrong — or even face a higher tax bill, depending on how the NFT sale is structured.
This could just be the start. In future, NFTs could be used to sell off pieces of a home’s ownership, or the sale of an NFT could convey the right of first refusal to buy a property, giving buyers the option to purchase a property at a set, agreed-upon price for a specific time period.
- February 16: Redmi K50 series launch (China)
- February 17: OnePlus Nord CE 2 launch
- February 18: Horizon: Forbidden West launch on PS4/PS5
- February 24: Motorola’s next flagship global launch (Edge 30 Pro?)
- February 25: Samsung Galaxy S22 on sale
- February 25: Steam Deck hits markets for pre-orders
- February 25: Elden Ring launches for PS4/PS5, Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, and PC
- February 28-March 3: MWC Barcelona
Tech Tweet of the Week
Remember what we said about some people watching Unpacked in the metaverse? This brings back memories of Second Life (remember that?).