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Updated: 8 hours 17 min ago

What happened to Fling, Amazon's Chromecast clone on Fire TV?

Thu, 07/20/2017 - 06:00
Amazon Fling was supposed to bring Chromecast-like features to Fire TV devices. Two years later, that effort has fizzled.

Newegg is offering a four-port USB hub for free today (after rebate)

Wed, 07/19/2017 - 14:21

Periodically Newegg decides to heavily discount its Rosewill cables and connectors. Right now, the retailer has a sale on its in-house products that’ll beat even a $0.99 HDMI cable on eBay: Everything’s free. Kind of.

These products are free after rebate, so you still have to pay up front. (And depending on where you live, you’ll also have to pay sales tax, which won’t get reimbursed.) After the rebate, you’ll get a gift card worth the value of the purchase. Of all the products available today, I’m most interested in the four-port USB 3.0 aluminum hub for $12 (before the $12 rebate).

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Apple releases iOS 10.3.3, macOS Sierra 10.12.6, and watchOS 3.2.3 updates

Wed, 07/19/2017 - 13:48

Apple on Wednesday released updates for iOS 10, macOS Sierra, and watchOS 3. Before you install any OS update, back up your device, just in case you have problems with the update and need to revert.

iOS 10.3.3

You can install the iOS 10.3.3 update directly on your iPhone or iPad on a wireless connection. The update is 84.6MB, and Apple says the update includes bug fixes and security improvements. Your iOS device will need to restart. Follow these steps to do the installation:

  1. Tap on the Settings app.
  2. Tap General > Software Update.
  3. Tap Download and Install to install the update.

Apple provides a link that provides information on the security content for iOS 10.3.3.

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Goodbye Google Now, hello new feed that obsessively tracks your interests

Wed, 07/19/2017 - 13:16
Google has officially killed off the Google Now name, replacing it with a smarter, more personalized feed that aims to deliver only the most relevant information to your phone.

Amazon is selling a home UPS for $55 right now

Tue, 07/18/2017 - 18:52

Amazon has several deals on APC back-up power supplies and surge protectors right now, and the best of them is the APC Back-UPS Connect for $55. That’s its lowest price yet on the site, and the first real discount we’ve seen in the last six months.

The Back-UPS Connect is an interesting device as it can act as a mobile power pack, or you can slap it in the dock for a 50 watt UPS. When in mobile mode, it has enough power to charge a smart phone approximately five times. When docked, the UPS supplies about 2.5 hours of power for a home network. (That’s not a ton of time, but it’s fine for a sub-$60 UPS. Remember, this is not a fancy pure sine wave UPS like the CyberPower unit we looked at in May.) And when you’re not using it for battery power, the Back-UPS Connect doubles as a surge protector.

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AT&T is currently offering hefty discounts on the Fitbit Charge 2 and Fitbit Surge

Mon, 07/17/2017 - 13:50

AT&T has some online-only deals today for those who can't get enough fitness tracking into their lives. The carrier has the Fitbit Charge 2 (select colors only) and the Fitbit Surge (tangerine) on sale for $74.50 and $124.50, respectively. Both prices are quite a bit cheaper than the usual prices, though the color options may not appeal to everyone. The Fitbit Charge 2 is selling for about $130 at other retailers, while the Surge normally sells for $200.

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Get a sneak peek at the new emoji coming to iOS, macOS, and watchOS

Mon, 07/17/2017 - 13:10

Did you know that Monday is World Emoji Day? To celebrate, Apple released a preview of new emoji coming to its operating systems.

Here’s a look at some of the new characters.

Apple Apple Apple Apple Apple Apple Apple Apple Apple Apple Apple iTunes movie titles

That’s not all Apple is doing to commemorate World Emoji Day. If you go to the iTunes Store, you’ll find featured movie titles displayed using emoji.

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The Week in iOS Apps: A Microsoft app that sees for you

Mon, 07/17/2017 - 10:00
An app that sees for you

Image by Rob Schultz/Macworld

This week’s roundup is proof were living in the future. Read on!

Microsoft’s Seeing AI: Talking Camera for the Blind

Image by Microsoft’s Seeing AI: Talking Camera for the Blind

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Mac mini: Features, specifications, and prices for Apple’s affordable desktop computer

Sat, 07/15/2017 - 08:00

The Mac mini is Apple’s entry-level desktop Mac. It’s slower than Apple’s other desktop computers—the iMac and the Mac Pro—but it remains fast enough for general-purpose use. Apple targets first-time Mac users with the Mac mini, but longtime Mac users like the price and use the Mac mini as a server or an entertainment Mac connected to a TV.

The Mac mini models that Apple currently sells were originally released in October 2014. Three years is a long time to call a computer “new.” (The current Mac mini was released 1,000 days ago on July 12.) Apple has made no mention of its plans for the Mac mini, unlike the company’s other neglected desktop computer, the Mac Pro.

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Mac Pro: Features, specifications, and prices for Apple’s workstation

Sat, 07/15/2017 - 07:00

The Mac Pro is Apple’s workstation. It’s designed for professionals who need a powerful and flexible machine, and is ideal for applications that use as many processing cores as possible—video-editing applications, image-editing software, 3D programs, and the like.

Here’s the problem with the Mac Pro: Apple hasn’t really done much with it since it was released in December 2013. It got a speed bump in April of this year, but that’s it. At that time, Apple acknowledged that they’re rethinking the Mac Pro, but it’s not coming this year.

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The Big Journey takes you on a charming, dumpling-fueled adventure

Fri, 07/14/2017 - 10:00

These days, keeping up with games can be a full-time job. So how do you separate the signal from the noise, the wheat from the chaff, the Temple Runs from the Temple Jumps? Allow us to help by regularly selecting a game You Should Play.

Imagine you’re a cat. An adorable blue kitty who loves food—specifically, fresh-steamed dumplings. That’s not too much of a stretch, right? 

Armor Games

Who doesn’t want to be this cat?! 

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The Week in iOS Accessories and Cases: Pi Case does a little bit of everything

Fri, 07/14/2017 - 09:00
A piece of Pi

Image by Rob Schultz/Macworld

This week’s roundup includes a new case that can power your iPhone and remotely control your TV. Read on!


Image by Piware

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iMac: Everything you need to know about Apple’s all-in-one computer

Fri, 07/14/2017 - 03:01

The iMac is a direct descendant of the very first Mac, and it’s often the computer that longtime users think about when they think about the Macintosh. The iMac’s all-in-one design is popular and iconic.

The iMac is great for both novices and demanding users. It can handle general-purpose and heavy-duty tasks equally well. It’s ideal for someone who needs to buy a complete computer setup (keyboard, mouse or trackpad, and display) and wants to maximize workspace efficiency.

The current iMac lineup was released in June 2017 during Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference. While the new iMacs might look the same on the outside as its predecesors, they’re quite a bit different inside. It starts with the screen: Apple says the new iMacs have the “best Mac displays ever,” upping the brightness to 500 nits to make them 43 percent brighter while bringing support for a billion colors. You’ll also get faster Intel Kaby Lake processors, higher memory capacity, super-fast storage, and next-generation graphics, as well as a pair of Thunderbolt 3/USB-C ports.

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Acer's 34-inch ultrawide FreeSync monitor has dropped to $550

Thu, 07/13/2017 - 15:21

CDW's got a pretty good deal right now for ultrawide curved display fans. The retailer's selling the 34-inch Acer XR341CK for $550. That's quite a drop from this monitor's initial $1,100 asking price back in 2015, and it's better than the best price you'll find elsewhere. For example, the going rate in Amazon's marketplace is about $150 more.

The specs on Acer's ultrawide IPS panel are a mix of great and respectable. It has a 4ms response time, which is about what you'd expect on an IPS display. It also has a 75Hz refresh rate. Speaking of which—this monitor comes with AMD FreeSync technology. This allows compatible AMD graphics cards to sync their refresh rates with the monitor. The end result is less screen tearing and image stutter. (By the way, CDW's page says this monitor also supports Nvidia's G-Sync, but that's a mistake. The G-Sync version of this model is the XR341CKA.)

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iPhone 8 rumors: Frickin laser beams in the frickin camera?!

Thu, 07/13/2017 - 12:52

Updated July 13, 2017 with a report about a laser sensor that will reportedly take AR and autofocus to the next level. 

Apple’s is still selling tens of millions of iPhone 7s every month—but all everyone can talk about is what’s coming next. After all, 2017 marks the iPhone’s 10th anniversary, so Apple is reportedly gearing up to make this year’s model extra special.

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12 sweet cases for the new 10.5-inch iPad Pro

Thu, 07/13/2017 - 09:00
Cover it up

Image by Case-Mate

Apple’s new 10.5-inch iPad Pro hits a sweet spot for many—it’s big enough to offer productivity gains, yet small enough to still be pretty portable. If you’re using the new 10.5-inch iPad Pro as a laptop replacement and toting it all over town with you, you’ve probably realized this by now: You need a case or some sort of protection for it. It’s still an iPad, after all, not a laptop, and that big, bright, 10.5-inch screen is easily damaged. But don’t worry—we’ve got your back. Here are some of the coolest cases on the market.

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The unpleasant reality behind PlayStation Vue's recent price hike

Thu, 07/13/2017 - 06:00
The end of PlayStation Vue Slim is a reminder that streaming bundles have a limited ability to keep prices down

How to use PayPal as a payment option for iTunes and App Store purchases

Wed, 07/12/2017 - 16:59

There’s a new way to pay for your iTunes digital purchases: PayPal.

Apple has added PayPal as a payment option to the iTunes Store, App Store, iBookstore, and Apple Music memberships. You can link your PayPal account to your Apple ID and use it to pay for apps, music downloads, movie rentals, and other content and services, like upgrading to a paid iCloud Storage plan. Here's how to do it when it becomes available.

  1. Tap/click here to sign in to iTunes using your Apple ID or Touch ID.
  2. Go to Payment Information and tap on PayPal and then Account.
  3. Follow the steps to authenticate your PayPal. After it’s confirmed, all future purchases will be charged to your PayPal account.

Once your PayPal account is linked to your Apple ID, you will be able to use PayPal’s One Touch feature to make purchases quickly and securely on all your Apple devices, including Apple Watch and Apple TV.

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Apple again offers free Beats for its back-to-school promo, but the iPhone is excluded

Wed, 07/12/2017 - 12:21

It might seem like summer has just begun, but Apple is already thinking of the fall. And nothing says September like a back-to-school promotion.

This year, lucky students starting the school year off with a new Mac or iPad can score a pair of shiny new Bluetooth headphones in any color they’d like. The promotion is essentially the same as last year’s with one notable exception: The iPhone 7 and 7 Plus are excluded. It breaks down like this:

  • iMac, Mac Pro, MacBook, MacBook Pro, and MacBook Air buyers can choose between a free pair of Solo3 wireless headphones ($300), Powerbeats3 Bluetooth earphones ($200), or BeatsX wireless buds ($150).
  • iPad Pro purchasers will receive $150 in savings for the same three models. That means Beats X buds will be free, but you’ll need to pony up an extra $50 to get a pair of Powerbeats3 earphones or $150 for a pair of Solo3 cans.

Apple’s 2017 back-to-school promotion offers a pair of Beat Solo3 headphones for free.

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Net Neutrality: What happened during the July 12 Internet-Wide Day of Action protest

Tue, 07/11/2017 - 14:46
On July 12, an Internet-Wide Day of Action will highlight how the web would look if telecom companies were allowed to control it for profit. Protestors will stage mock consequences such as slower download times.