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iPhone X Animoji vs. Galaxy S9 AR Emoji: Creation, tracking, sharing, and karaoke

Mac World - Thu, 2018-03-08 08:30

Apple’s Animoji launched only three months ago, but there’s already a competitor. Samsung introduced AR Emoji on the Galaxy S9, and it brings the same fun and whimsical animated avatars to Android—with a few tricks that iPhone X doesn’t have. So which one is better? Let’s take a look. 

Animoji vs. AR Emoji: Creation

Apple and Samsung take vastly different approaches to their emoji. On iPhone X, they live in Messages, and you can either create a 10-second video or a sticker within the app. On the Galaxy S9, AR Emoji live in the camera app, and you need to create a video or a sticker there before you can send it to your friends. AR Emoji videos can be any length you want, though the file sizes can get pretty big. Animoji videos, meanwhile, are limited to 10 seconds.

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iPhone X Animoji vs. Galaxy S9 AR Emoji: Creation, tracking, sharing, and karaoke

PC World - Thu, 2018-03-08 08:30
Apple's Animoji on iPhone X has a competitor in AR Emoji on the Samsung Galaxy S9. Here's how they stack up.

How to restore missing expansion triangles in the Finder

Mac World - Thu, 2018-03-08 08:00

One of the most basic things you can do in the Finder in list view is expand a folder by clicking a triangle to the left of its name. This unfurls its contents. (Option-click and it expands all sub-folders.)

However, Macworld reader Walter writes in on behalf of a friend whose triangles are missing! This isn’t a geometric problem, but rather one of organization I expect. Apple offers two separate ways to display items in a Finder window in list view: Sort By and Arrange By. They’re two different kinds of things easily mistaken for each other.


When using Arrange By in the Finder in the list view, folders don’t have expansion triangles.

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Samsung Galaxy S9 review: Incrementally better in all the right places

PC World - Thu, 2018-03-08 08:00

Samsung’s Galaxy S9 is a strange breed of smartphone. With a Snapdragon 845 processor, great camera, and 18:9 screen, it has all the trappings of a fantastic 2018 handset. Yet, at the same time, it’s remarkably similar to the Galaxy S8 that it replaces. In fact, it’s so much like its predecessor, issues we might normally overlook become all the more obvious this second time around.

Samsung’s hook with the Galaxy S9 is a “reimagined” camera, but the camera’s new features—namely Dual Aperture, Super Slow-mo, and AR Emoji—are equal parts gimmick and catch-up to competing models. And because Samsung is limiting the dual camera and Live Portrait mode to the larger Plus model, the S9 (the phone I’m reviewing here) feels less like a new phone than a mid-cycle refresh. As such, the S9 is a perfectly fine entry for the first new premium phone of 2018, but there’s nothing here that breaks exciting new ground for other phones to follow.

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Xiaomi 10,000mAh Mi Power Bank Pro review: A battery pack that lives up to its name

Mac World - Thu, 2018-03-08 07:00
Not only is the Mi Power Bank Pro small enough to tote around everywhere, it's capable of charging all the things.

Best VPN services: Reviews and buying advice for Mac users

Mac World - Thu, 2018-03-08 07:00

With the internet abuzz with privacy concerns and the potential changes coming to net neutrality, you’ve likely heard about virtual private networks, better known as VPNs. When used correctly, a VPN can greatly strengthen your online privacy, assist in keeping your personal information secure, and even spoof your location in the world—allowing you to access websites or services that would otherwise be off limits due to region-locking.

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Xiaomi 10,000mAh Mi Power Bank Pro review: A battery pack that lives up to its name

PC World - Thu, 2018-03-08 07:00

Xiaomi has yet to launch any of its phones in the U.S., but that hasn’t stopped the Chinese company from slowly introducing consumers to its brand and products.

Note: This review is part of our roundup of portable power banks. Go there for details on competing products and our testing methods.

The latest arrival on American shores is the Mi Power Bank Pro. This 10,000 milliamp-hour battery pack is sleek and well-designed. Its sturdy housing feels like it can withstand a drop or six.

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CyberGhost VPN review: A speedy VPN provider that's easy to use

Mac World - Thu, 2018-03-08 06:55

First, let’s address the spooky stuff that pertains to paranoid types, journalists, and political activists. CyberGhost’s offices are located in Bucharest, Romania, a country not known for sharing online information with western intelligence concerns or law enforcement agencies. Don’t feel too cozy about it, though: The company was recently sold to Crossrider, which is based on The Isle of Man—a British Crown Dependency.

England is a member of the Five Eyes (FVEY) data intelligence sharing program. If you consider using CyberGhost, be aware any sensitive information you send or receive could fall under direct government scrutiny. On top of that, Crossrider is a digital product company, and one of the products that it offers is ad server software for targeting mobile hardware.

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NordVPN review: This VPN’s features make it hard to beat

Mac World - Thu, 2018-03-08 06:45

Launched in 2008, NordVPN is arguably one of the more popular, high-profile VPN service providers operating today. While payments for service are processed through CloudVPN—a company based in the United States—NordVPN is based in Panama (a country that doesn’t participate in the Five Eyes, Nine Eyes, or Fourteen Eyes communications interception/sharing agreements). Accordingly, users should be safe from untargeted government data trawling.

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SaferVPN review: Good features overshadowed by privacy concerns

Mac World - Thu, 2018-03-08 06:35

SaferVPN has been around since 2013 and is located in Israel—a country with stringent privacy laws that shield companies and citizens from its many forms of government surveillance. This, combined with the company’s no-logging policy, should keep any of your online doings safely under wraps while you’re using their services.

However, Israel has been known to share information with Five Eyes (FVEY), an intelligence sharing agreement between the U.S.A, U.K., Canada, New Zealand, and Australia. That the company maintains an office in New York City compounds concerns over this point. If you live in a Five, Nine, or Fourteen Eyes country and have concerns that regional laws may not be enough to keep your online activities from being shared with your government, SaferVPN’s services may not be for you.

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TunnelBear VPN review: An option for occasional VPN users

Mac World - Thu, 2018-03-08 06:25

Unsure if you’ll use a VPN often enough to warrant paying for it, or only occasionally require the security that using one provides? TunnelBear could be the service that you’re looking for.

Based in Toronto, Canada, the company has a strict no-logging policy that pertains to user IP addresses, DNS queries, or information you accessed online while connected to its servers. However, TunnelBear is obliged by Canadian law to hand over user names, email addresses, the amount of data used while accessing their servers, and credit-card information should law enforcement or a federal agency come knocking. Also, because Canada participates in the Five Eye program, this information could be accessed by American agencies, too. That said, most people will have little to fear from these circumstances.

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TorGuard VPN review: A VPN service designed for extreme privacy

Mac World - Thu, 2018-03-08 06:15

It’s tempting to believe that VPN provider TorGuard is in cahoots with the internet privacy-oriented Tor Network. But it isn’t. If anything, the “Tor” in TorGuard likely stands for “torrenting.”

Hooking the VPN’s raison d’etre to torrenting may raise eyebrows, as the technology is often used to illegally download copyrighted media from a peer-to-peer network. But the fact remains that TorGuard offers extra layers of privacy protection for not just torrenting, but for all types of data transfers, and that’s a selling point for anyone concerned about being surveilled.

Note: This review is part of our best VPNs roundup. Go there for details about competing products and how we tested them.

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VyprVPN review: A VPN committed to online user security, privacy, and an open internet

Mac World - Thu, 2018-03-08 06:05

While VyprVPN has offices in Texas, its parent company, Golden Frog, is incorporated in Switzerland. For anyone that doesn’t want their government to know what they get up to online, this is great news: Switzerland owes no allegiance to the Five, Nine, or Fourteen Eyes programs.

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5 signs you’re not ready to cut the cable TV cord

Mac World - Thu, 2018-03-08 06:00
Thinking of cutting the cord? Here are 5 signs you're not ready to drop cable.

5 signs you’re not ready to cut the cable TV cord

PC World - Thu, 2018-03-08 06:00
Thinking of cutting the cord? Here are 5 signs you're not ready to drop cable.

Microsoft expects the 'majority of customers' to use Windows 10's S mode

PC World - Wed, 2018-03-07 21:29

Microsoft expects that the “majority of customers” will enjoy Windows 10 in its new S mode, Microsoft’s corporate vice president of Windows wrote in a blog post Wednesday night.

The stunning endorsement of Windows 10’s S mode—which was formally confirmed as a mode of Windows 10 just about a day ago—was made by Joe Belfiore, who told me via Twitter that he expected the transition to take place in 2019. Belfiore’s blog post set an even more aggressive timetable, claiming that customers would be able to buy a PC with Windows 10 S mode at or near the time when the next feature update to Windows 10 drops. That update, known as Redstone 4, is expected to appear on PCs in early April.

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Cyan teases a project of some sort tied to Myst's 25th anniversary

PC World - Wed, 2018-03-07 19:25

Hot on the heels of last week’s Firmament announcement, today Cyan teased another project in the works. 2018 is, of course, the 25th anniversary of Myst, and it looks like Cyan’s preparing...something. Hard to say what, exactly, but something.

On Wednesday afternoon Cyan’s Twitter account sent out a series of messages in the familiar handwriting of Myst mainstay Atrus. The message, in its entirety: “Perhaps the ending has not yet been written...” This was then followed up by a shot of the Myst Island linking book, a pen, and a sticky note with “25” on it, underlined. Here, take a look:

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Get a 2016 128GB iPad Pro with Wi-Fi and cellular at Costco for just $400

Mac World - Wed, 2018-03-07 15:53

Costco’s been rolling out some good ideals for iPad models lately. Last month I told you about great deal with a regular iPad, but this month Costco members can pick up the 2016 9.7-inch 128GB iPad Pro with Wi-Fi and Cellular for just $400. If you don’t mind slapping down some additional cash, you can get the 256GB model for just $500. The catch? Both are only available in gold or rose gold. (You’ll find the rose gold 256GB unit here.)

Still, this is an impressive offer, especially if you consider that the device was originally listed as $879. Even now, the best price you can find on Amazon for the same gold model is $499, and the silver model still sells for a whopping $795.95. Costco’s sale lasts until next Wednesday, March 14, or at least until Costco runs out of units. Shipping is included in the price.

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Windows 10's Sets will reappear in the fall Insider builds, with support for legacy apps

PC World - Wed, 2018-03-07 15:19

If you’re a fan of Windows 10’s tabbed Sets interface, you may want to sign up for the Windows Insider program this fall—because Sets is back.

Microsoft announced Windows 10 Insider Build 17618 on Wednesday, a closed beta for the “Skip Ahead” portion of the Windows Insider program. Most Insiders follow the developer team working on the current build; that team is wrapping up the spring update (Redstone 4) that's due in a few weeks. The "Skip Ahead" Insiders follow another team of developers working on the next update, due in the fall. 

It’s in the fall update, known as Redstone 5, where Sets will reappear. We tested Sets late last year, which replaces the traditional “one app, one window” user interface with something that looks more like a web browser. Last fall, the beta Sets interface allowed you to tack on an app as another tab, using UWP apps like Calendar, Edge, and Mail. 

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Oculus Rifts worldwide temporarily break due to an expired certificate

PC World - Wed, 2018-03-07 15:17

If you want a hint of how fragile our tech-reliant world is, look no further than the Oculus Rift. This morning, Rift owners the world over discovered that their $400 virtual reality headset had become a paperweight overnight—at least temporarily.

Seems as though Oculus uh...forgot(?) to issue an updated Windows certificate, the security feature that confirms that, yes, Oculus’s software is actually Oculus’s software. As Microsoft’s decade-old primer puts it, "Digital certificates function similarly to identification cards such as passports and drivers' licenses." That’s a pretty good analogy.

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