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Updated: 5 hours 27 min ago

Govee DreamColor for TV with Alexa review: This bias light uses a camera to sync with your TV screen

Thu, 08/15/2019 - 06:00
If you want more from your TV bias lights than a subtle glow that boosts contrast and eases eye strain, this responsive LED light strip from Govee is worth a try.

Luminoodle Color Bias Lighting review: A nice range of bias lighting colors for your TV, but no “true” white mode

Thu, 08/15/2019 - 06:00
If you’re looking for a moderately priced, multi-colored bias lighting strip for the back of your TV, the Luminoodle Color Bias Lighting strip makes for a solid choice.

The MediaLight bias TV lighting review: Subtle bias lighting designed for videophiles

Thu, 08/15/2019 - 06:00
The MediaLight bias lighting strips are designed for discriminating viewers who want to enhance their TV’s visuals while preserving the integrity of the original image.

Vansky Bias Lighting for HDTV review: This bargain bias lighting strip is a little too cool

Thu, 08/15/2019 - 06:00
This popular LED light strip is easy to install and boasts a variety of colors and light modes, but its color temperature leaves something to be desired.

How to get all of the Apple Watch Activity badges

Wed, 08/14/2019 - 14:30

Achievement badges are a funny thing. You know they’re just a simple little bit of visual flair, they don’t even do anything, and yet for some reason you just have to collect them. Achievements are great motivators, and the achievement badges for the activity tracking on the Apple Watch have inspired many users to get more exercise.

If you want to maximize your badge count, you’re going to watch to chase down as many activity achievements as you can. Most are available year-round, but there are also some time-limited special events to grab, too. Here’s a list of all the activity achievements for the Apple Watch and how to unlock them.

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iOS 13: How to turn on Dark Mode on iPhone and iPad

Wed, 08/14/2019 - 11:59

One of iOS 13’s most highly anticipated changes is also one of its simplest. The latest version of Apple’s mobile operating system finally introduces a Dark Mode for your iPhone and iPad’s interface, much as last year’s macOS Mojave finally bought a Dark Mode to Apple’s desktop operating system.

Once it’s on, formerly white interface elements of iOS change to black (or a deep slate gray), and the text shifts to a brighter color for better legibility. That means that many Apple apps (such as Mail and Music) will now put less of a strain on your eyes at night, and there’s a small chance that Dark Mode will even improve your battery life. And, of course, it just looks cool.

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How to use 2FA on older Apple devices that won’t let you enter a verification code

Wed, 08/14/2019 - 09:00

Most people who own Apple hardware have different generations of equipment in use. And because the company’s gear can last a long time, you can wind up with some old equipment—like an ancient Apple TV or Mac that’s being used to serve up video or what have you.

Apple has shifted aggressively to require two-factor authentication (2FA) with Apple ID accounts as a way of deterring account hijacking. This is admirable, though it has some adverse side effects for people who have multiple Apple IDs for historical or other purposes. (I wrote a couple of years ago about using multiple macOS accounts and other tricks to manage that.)

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iOS 13: How to set and use Favorites and Collections in Maps

Wed, 08/14/2019 - 08:00

Apple has slowly been releasing brand-new mapping data across the U.S., and it's more detailed and accurate than ever before. But a great mobile maps experience is about more than just great map data. With iOS 13, Apple's adding a slew of useful new features, and the most useful are probably the ability to mark locations as favorites and build sharable collections.

Both functions are somewhat related, but act a little differently. Favorites are there to provide quick access on your own device, while Collections group locations together and can be shared with others. Here's how they work.

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Momentum Meri smart thermostat review: The opposite of bang for the buck

Wed, 08/14/2019 - 07:00
Sluggish, convoluted, and unreliable, this low-cost smart thermostat just can't justify its $99 price tag.

Why Disney’s video bundle will force Apple to bundle Apple TV+

Wed, 08/14/2019 - 07:00

It’s amazing how one company can change how you view pricing in an entire market.

More than a year ago, I made some guesses about how Apple would roll out its still-forthcoming TV streaming service. I was a symbol away from getting the name right, and guessed that “Apple TV”—we now know it’s called Apple TV+—would cost $7.99 a month, with an affordable bundle with Apple Music.

But back then, Disney’s streaming plans were still on the drawing board. Today, with the launch of Apple’s service coming very soon, the landscape is more complicated and competitive than ever. Not only are NBCUniversal and Warner Media preparing their own streaming-service launches, but Disney’s moves keep getting more aggressive.

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Samsung HW-Q70R soundbar review: This easy-to-install soundbar delivers Dolby Atmos and DTS:X

Wed, 08/14/2019 - 06:00
Yes, it’s pricey, but the Samsung HW-Q70R lets you add rich, detailed, and immersive sound, complete with Dolby Atmos and DTS;X support, to your TV in a matter of minutes.

It's time to liberate the Apple Watch from the iPhone

Wed, 08/14/2019 - 06:00

By the time watchOS 6 drops later this year, only the slimmest of threads will keep the Apple Watch tethered to the iPhone. The watch itself will soon have its own App Store. It’ll have more useful built-in apps, such as a calculator and voice memos, and long ago, the cellular models eliminated the need to rely on the iPhone for internet connection. It’s already so close to being a standalone device, so I say it’s time for Apple to snip the last thread and open it to buyers who don’t have an iPhone.

The Apple Watch is already a hit with its current design, but a standalone Apple Watch may turn into a cultural phenomenon of the likes that Apple hasn't seen in years now. Even handcuffed to the iPhone, the Apple Watch is already the undisputed leader of the smartwatch world, to the point that earlier this week research firm Strategy Analytics (via The Street) released a report claiming that Apple now commands 46 percent of the market. Samsung comes in second place at a measly 13 percent, while Fitbit commands a mere 10 percent.

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FAA confirms ban of recalled 2015 15-inch MacBook Pros on U.S. flights

Tue, 08/13/2019 - 22:46

Remember how Samsung suffered the indignity of having the Galaxy Note 7 banned from U.S. flights, and how one exploded on a Southwest Airlines flight? Apple is attracting slightly similar attention after Bloomberg quoted a statement from the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration confirming that 2015 15-inch MacBook Pros with defective batteries are banned from U.S. flights.

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New Apple Maps are rolling out to the northeast U.S.

Tue, 08/13/2019 - 12:39

About a year ago, Apple announced a huge change to Apple Maps. It wasn’t about new features in the Maps app (though there are new features coming in iOS 13), but rather a complete overhaul of the fundamental map data. Buildings, rivers, roads, vegetation; it’s all vastly more detailed and accurate in the new maps.

Apple began rolling out the new mapping data to Northern California just after its announcement, with a promise to continue rolling out new maps to the rest of the U.S. “over the next year.” Southern California and Hawaii followed in late 2018, then parts of the southwest in April 2019.

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Brilliant is adding native LIFX smart bulb support to its smart home controller

Tue, 08/13/2019 - 12:00
LIFX bulbs use Wi-Fi, so they don’t necessarily need a controller, but this should be a benefit to Brilliant users nonetheless.

Hacks: Tall tales of Apple security woes

Tue, 08/13/2019 - 08:00

Have you heard the one about the Face ID “hack”?

WELL. Keep your hands and feet inside the cart as this ride can take sudden turns.

Writing for the Forbes contributor network and yodeling mime academy, Davey Winder says “Apple's iPhone FaceID Hacked In Less Than 120 Seconds.” (Tip o’ the antlers to @designheretic.)

“Hacked”, you will not be surprised to discover, is used somewhat loosely in this context.

What you need to know is this is an extremely clever and dangerous hack that puts you in danger right now. Its key element is just one thing: free access to the unconscious body of the iPhone owner. That’s it.

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Best smart bulbs for your connected home

Tue, 08/13/2019 - 07:43
Today’s smart bulbs are brighter and easier to control than ever, but choosing the right one for your environment remains a challenge.

Samsung SmartThings Wifi Smart Plug review: No hub required, but wear your debugging hat

Tue, 08/13/2019 - 07:30
It’s affordable enough, but ultimately not worth your time in its present state.

The Apple Card is not magic

Tue, 08/13/2019 - 07:00

A select set of consumers are finally starting to get their Apple Cards, and the web is overflowing with banal analysis about every mundane detail. Did you hear the one about the guy with a credit score of 620 who got approved? Gasp!

Look, I get it. This is Apple, after all. Anything the company does gets dissected, fawned over, argued about, and hot-taked into oblivion. But the Apple Card is often mistakenly considered to be far more noteworthy than it is: outside of the fact that the Apple Card is, well, from Apple, it’s not very remarkable at all.

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6 upgrades Apple’s iPad Pro needs before an unnecessary triple-lens rear camera

Tue, 08/13/2019 - 06:00

With just a few weeks to go until Apple kicks off its furious fall release schedule, the rumors are in full swing. We might have learned the name of the new iPhone and the possible replacement for 3D Touch, but the latest rumor is a head scratcher. Apparently, Apple will be adding the same triple camera array that’s coming to the iPhone 11 to the iPad Pro, marking a giant leap from the current 12-megapixel single-camera it currently has.

We’d like to dismiss this rumor as ridiculous, but it comes from Mac Otakara’s Chinese supple sources (via MacRumors), which have been accurate in the past. So let’s pretend it’s true. Here’s my question: Why? Taking pictures with an 11- or 12.9-inch tablet is already awkward for both the photographer and the people forced to witness the spectacle, so why would Apple encourage such antisocial behavior by adding a high-end camera onto the iPad Pro? While we’re waiting to see if this pans out, here are five upgrades I’d rather see in the next iPad Pro.

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