While Apple reigns supreme on mobile from both a hardware and operating system perspective (iPhone and iOS are best in class), Google is still king of apps and services. Things like Google Maps, Chrome, and Gmail are used by many iPhone and iPad users. Why do Apple fans opt for these Google solutions? They simply work well and are extremely dependable. Apple Maps, for instance, is good, but Google Maps is great. The search giant provides reliable tools that people enjoy using.
Today, Google announces that its Maps app for iOS is getting even better. You see, users can now "follow" their favorite locations, such as theaters, restaurants, and museums to name a few. As a result of following these places, you will be provided with interesting information about them, such as discounts, holiday hours, or dinner specials, for example.
Howard Stern is arguably the greatest broadcaster of all time -- his radio show is legendary for its innovation and laugh-out-loud comedy. For well over 30 years, Stern has been broadcasting in some form -- first terrestrial radio, but since 2006, he has been on satellite (what is now known as SiriusXM).
As great as listening to Howard is, his show can be very visual too -- it can be very rewarding to actually see what is happening in his radio studio. His E! television show is long gone, as is his "Howard TV" on demand service. Thankfully, the SiriusXM mobile app for Android and iOS now offers Howard Stern video content. Of course, wouldn't it be better to watch that content on your television rather than a small screen? Starting today you can, as the video content is now available on Amazon Fire TV. Previously, the only way to get the video onto your TV was using a Chromecast dongle.
Having a "smart home" is all the rage these days, with people installing Wi-Fi cameras, locks, and security systems. Not to mention, voice assistant hardware from companies like Amazon, Google, and Apple allow you to interact with those aforementioned smart devices. Understandably, however, some people are wary of installing such things due to privacy concerns and hacking. These folks shouldn't feel bad about being cautious -- there is absolutely nothing wrong with being hesitant to allow major corporations into your home.
With all of that said, even if you don't trust having cameras or microphones in your home, smart lighting is a less risky option that you should still consider. It is very convenient to turn on a lamp, for instance, using your smartphone. Today, a company called Eve Systems launches a really cool such lamp. Called "Eve Flare," it is compatible with Apple HomeKit and features the ability to change the lighting color using your iPhone, iPad, or Apple Watch. You can even charge the lamp wirelessly.
Nostalgia is a tricky thing. Often, it is a means for people to relive their childhood or remember what they think were better days. Our minds have a way of sometimes making us remember something as being better than it actually was. For instance, you may recall a film from your childhood as being hilarious, but when watching it again in the present day, it simply doesn't measure up to your memory.
When it comes to computer hardware, however, sometimes your memory of something being fantastic is quite accurate. Over the years, the keyboards and mice provided by PC manufacturers, for instance, have gotten much worse -- often being trash. Gamers in particular will want to replace these input devices. One such mouse that many gamers were apparently gaga over was the Logitech G MX518. After it was discontinued, Logitech was bombarded with calls to bring it back to market. Well, for those people, their wish is coming true. Not only is the company re-releasing the MX518, but it is making the device's internals better too.
Apple's iPad remains the best tablet on the market. Many companies have tried to compete, but all have largely failed. Sure, there are some decent Android models on the market -- from a hardware perspective -- but the underlying operating system cannot compare to the excellent iOS. There are countless Android tablets that get abandoned by manufacturers, getting stuck on outdated OS versions chock full of exploits -- which means they simply aren't safe.
If you buy an iPad, you can be confident that Apple will support it for many years, making it a very wise investment. Regardless of which model iPad you choose, it is smart to protect it with a case. If you opted for one of the non-pro 9.7-inch iPad tablets (2017 or 2018), for instance, Urban Armor Gear has a new case that will safeguard the device with military grade protection while also being fashionable. Since the rear is translucent, you can still see Apple's design -- an important thing to some consumers. It even has a loop holder for an Apple Pencil or other stylus.
As more and more people opt to work from home these days, videoconferencing is becoming increasingly important. Simply dialing into a voice-only conference call won't cut it -- actually seeing your coworkers (and them seeing you) is a far better experience. Of course, the downside is you will have to wear clothes!
Having a good webcam is an essential part of the videoconferencing experience. True, you can get by with the low-quality camera found on your laptop, but why torture people with grainy video? Instead, you should leverage a quality webcam that will impress and delight your coworkers. The Logitech C920 has long been such an option for both laptops and desktops, but today, the company announces an "s" refresh -- the C920s Pro HD Webcam.
System76 refreshes Serval WS Linux laptop with 9th Gen Intel Core CPUs and NVIDIA GeForce RTX 20-Series GPUs
Nowadays, many consumers put a premium on having a thin and light computer. This is understandable, as no one wants to lug around a big and heavy notebook. With that said, some people only care about raw power -- weight and size be damned. System76's Serval WS is one such laptop -- insanely powerful, but boy howdy, it is a biggun! The 15-inch model weighs 7.5 pounds, while the 17-inch variant tips the scales at 8.6!
Today, System76 launches a refreshed version of the Linux laptop. It features desktop-class 9th Generation Intel Core processors, which is cool, but arguably more intriguing is the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 20-Series GPU options -- 2060, 2070, or 2080. Yeah, this refreshed Serval WS is an absolute beast!
When Amazon announced it was buying eero, some people panicked. After all, home networking equipment is a very personal thing -- it can be worrying when a multi-billion dollar firm becomes the new owner. It is totally warranted to be concerned about the privacy implications. With that said, it is not a given that Amazon will be nefarious in this regard.
AmpliFi -- Ubiquiti Networks' home brand -- understands that people are concerned, so it wants to help eero owners that are looking to abandon ship. You see, AmpliFi will pay you $100 if you switch to its HD Wi-Fi system and ditch eero. Actually, AmpliFi is extending this offer to those that ditch any of its competitors' mesh products -- not just eero. Scoring this deal is as easy as using social media. Don't like using social platforms? Don't worry, you can enter by sending an email too.
NVMe solid states are insanely fast and getting more affordable every day. It is for this reason that most consumers should opt for them when possible -- they put SATA variants to shame. Even if you don't need the extra performance of an NVMe SSD, the ever-lowering prices make them a no-brainer.
While most people probably think of NVMe SSDs as something to go inside a computer, they also make exceptional external drives -- when paired with an enclosure, that is. Today, Plugable launches such a new product, and it has a very cool feature -- it is tool-free. In other words, you won't need a screwdriver to open the USB-C enclosure or secure the drive. Instead, it uses a clever unlock button to open up, and a rubber peg holds the SSD down. I've been testing this USB 3.1 gen 2 enclosure with a 250GB Samsung 970 EVO and it has proven quite speedy and solidly built.
HUAWEI makes excellent products -- its laptops, tablets, and smartphones are some of the best. The company wisely focuses on beauty in technology, crafting devices that don't just work well, but look attractive too. The Huawei MateBook 13, for instance, is one of the most beautiful laptops I've had the pleasure of using. Its products are not just skin deep, however, as they are also backed by high durability and performance.
The company is hoping American consumers will also be interested in its wearables, as today, it reveals the previously announced HUAWEI WATCH GT is finally coming to America. While not the company's first smartwatch to hit the USA, it is definitely the most intriguing. It runs an open source operating system called LiteOS, and battery life can apparently reach two weeks. No, that is not a typo -- two weeks! It focuses heavily on health -- it can monitor fitness and sleep. Best of all, it is compatible with both iOS and Android, so it won't lock you into either platform.
Back in January, Philips announced a beautiful pair of curved monitors. The premium displays featured Windows Hello cameras and USB-C -- very cool. Unfortunately, they both carried sky-high prices, starting at $799. What if you want a quality monitor at a more affordable price?
Today, Philips launches yet another pair of monitors, this time for far less money. The 32-inch 326E8FJSB features a QHD 2560 x 1440 display, while the 27-inch 276E8VJSB can do 4K. The monitors have similar designs, with a beautiful curved base, but the smaller one has thinner bezels.
There is no such thing as a one-size-fits-all laptop. Sure, there are some computers that are built for general use and should meet the needs of many, but due to personal preferences, there will never be an overall consensus on style, size, or price. For instance, I personally find 13-inch laptops to be the best balance of portability and usefulness, but some folks will think such a screen is too small. Heck, some may even prefer an 11.6-inch screen -- such is life.
With all of that said, HUAWEI has created a laptop that should check all the boxes for many consumers. The "MateBook 13," as you can guess, has a 13-inch screen. It even has an option for NVIDIA graphics -- if you need such a thing. I have been testing this computer to see if it meets my expectations for what a laptop should be in 2019.
Jeff Bezos may have his hands full with a pending divorce and alleged blackmail, but that is not going to slow Amazon down. Today, the popular retailer and Echo-maker announces a very intriguing acquisition. Surprisingly, Amazon will be buying eero for an undisclosed sum of money.
Not familiar with that company? That's not surprising. While eero is fairly popular with in-the-know consumers, it is not exactly a household name. Just know eero makes well-received mesh systems -- essentially a router and a series of access points that work together for superior coverage. But really, the company Amazon is acquiring isn't that important. The real story is that Amazon sees value in entering the home network business. Why is that so significant? Well, there are obvious privacy concerns -- will Amazon use these devices to track/log/monetize user traffic?
United States veterans often don't get the respect they deserve. Once they rejoin civilian life, it isn't uncommon to hear horror stories about how they are treated in regards to medical care. Veterans Health Administration facilities can sometimes have long waits, poor service, and terrible hygiene conditions. Don't get me wrong, not all of the VA hospitals are bad, but some are. And these brave people should never have deficient care.
Today, Apple announces that it is aiming to improve the medical care for these heroes with its "Health Records on iPhone" feature. This will allow veterans to safely and securely access medical records with an iPhone. This should be both a tremendous benefit and convenience for these heroic men and women, ultimately leading to an improved medical care experience.
Whether for business or personal use, a projector can be an invaluable tool. A portable battery-powered model in particular can create a great presentation experience no matter where you are working, such as a coffee shop. Hell, you can even use a portable projector for watching movies -- set up a little viewing party in a tent while camping, for instance.
Today, a company called AAXA launches a new portable projector, and it looks quite stylish. The "P7 Mini Projector," as it is called, features a removable 10,000mAh lithium-ion battery, which promises 90 minutes of use at 450 Lumens. When plugged into a power source, the projector can do 650 Lumens.