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Android TV: The Oreo update isn't enough

PC World - Thu, 2017-08-31 06:00
Android 8.0 Oreo crash-lands on the Nexus Player. Now what?

Android TV: The Oreo update isn't enough

Mac World - Thu, 2017-08-31 06:00
Android 8.0 Oreo crash-lands on the Nexus Player. Now what?

iOS and macOS automation: What does the future hold?

Mac World - Thu, 2017-08-31 06:00

One of the great things about computers is that they’re machines we can use to perform repetitive tasks that would bore human beings to tears. Power users have access to utilities and scripting languages to become incredibly productive, cutting out hours of busy work.

But in the past year, two events have occurred that call into question the future of tools to boost our productivity on both macOS and iOS. Longtime Automation product manager Sal Soghoian had his position at Apple eliminated, and Apple bought the leading iOS automation app, Workflow.

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Philips sweetens its Hue smart bulb starter kits and announces two new light fixtures

PC World - Thu, 2017-08-31 05:00
Hue starter kits now come with four bulbs instead of three, and there are new downlight and suspension fixtures.

Philips sweetens its Hue smart bulb starter kits and announces two new light fixtures

Mac World - Thu, 2017-08-31 05:00
Hue starter kits now come with four bulbs instead of three, and there are new downlight and suspension fixtures.

Logitech Craft hands-on: This keyboard's mini-Surface Dial is truly innovative

PC World - Thu, 2017-08-31 03:05

The Logitech Craft keyboard is what happens when a keyboard engineer glimpses Microsoft’s Surface Dial hockey-puck peripheral and decides: We can do that, too. Pairing a small, Dial-like keyboard knob with software templates pre-configured for popular apps makes the Craft a useful tool for almost any application. When it ships in October, however, it'll come with a hefty $200 price tag attached.

Nevertheless, as a productivity tool, the Craft (for both Macs and Windows PCs) is worth serious consideration. Logitech dubs its version of the Dial the Crown, and you can tap it, spin it, or push-and-turn it to perform various functions on an app-by-app basis. Logitech’s approach feels much more like something everyone could use, while the Surface Dial still feels like a specialized instrument for digital illustrators and artists.

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Libratone will convert its Zipp and Zipp Mini speakers into Alexa-powered smart speakers this fall

PC World - Thu, 2017-08-31 03:01
Own one of these upscale wireless speakers? It’s about to get a whole lot more capable.

Libratone will convert its Zipp and Zipp Mini speakers into Alexa-powered smart speakers this fall

Mac World - Thu, 2017-08-31 03:01
Own one of these upscale wireless speakers? It’s about to get a whole lot more capable.

Nest unveils the simpler, cheaper Nest Thermostat E

PC World - Thu, 2017-08-31 00:01
The company is implementing a better, best strategy in pursuit of more buyers.

Nest unveils the simpler, cheaper Nest Thermostat E

Mac World - Thu, 2017-08-31 00:01
The company is implementing a better, best strategy in pursuit of more buyers.

The best laptops of 2017: Ultrabooks, budget PCs, 2-in-1s, and more

PC World - Wed, 2017-08-30 17:49

Choosing the best laptop among the many options available is about to get a lot harder. Fall is coming—and so are a slew of new laptops.

In fact, if you’re hunting for a new ultraportable, we recommend holding off on any purchases for the time being. Intel recently announced four 8th-generation Core i5 and Core i7 mobile processors that could result in a dramatic leap in performance in thin-and-light convertibles, 2-in-1s, hybrids, and traditional laptops. Announcements of notebooks with these chips have begun, with likely more to follow.

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iPhone event on Sept. 12? iPhone 8 vs. Galaxy Note 8, and 4K Apple TV: Macworld Podcast episode 571

Mac World - Wed, 2017-08-30 17:15

Apple may have an event on September 12 that showcases the new iPhone. What would it take for you to be more productive with your iPhone? And reports say that 4K video is in the works for the Apple TV.

Macworld’s Roman Loyola, Leah YamshonMichael Simon, and Dan Masaoka talk about these topics and more in the Macworld Podcast, episode 571.

Editor’s note: We had technical issues with this episode and we were not able to broadcast the live video feed on the Macworld Facebook page or on Twitter. We hope to have those issues resolved by next week’s podcast.

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The Microsoft-Amazon deal leaves Cortana speakers with one advantage: Skype

PC World - Wed, 2017-08-30 15:38

If Cortana will work on Amazon’s Alexa-powered devices, and Alexa will run on Windows, what's the point of buying Cortana-powered connected speakers like Harman Kardon’s Invoke? In a word: Skype.

The unexpected partnership struck Wednesday between Amazon and Microsoft—neither of which owns a digital assistant that’s natively built into a major smartphone OS—extends Amazon’s reach to the more than 400 million PCs running Windows 10, and ties Microsoft closer to another third-party hardware platform. 

Alexa will be available as a Cortana skill on Windows 10 PCs first, followed by the Cortana apps on Android and iOS in the future, a Microsoft spokeswoman said in an email. Conversely, Cortana will be available as an Alexa skill on devices like the Amazon Echo, Echo Dot, and Echo Show. Microsoft has yet to confirm whether Alexa will be included on the Invoke.

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Dash cam reviews: What you need to catch the maniacs and meteors of daily driving

PC World - Wed, 2017-08-30 14:50

August 30, 2017: Updated with our review of the Thinkware Dash Cam F800, which offers impressively sharp night vision.

Dash cams are already essential in many countries because of scam artists who try to create accidents so they can sue you. They’ve also proven useful for catching the occasional meteor, as happened in Thailand and in Russia a few years ago.

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Asus ZenBook laptops power up with quad-core CPUs and discrete Nvidia graphics

PC World - Wed, 2017-08-30 12:29

The battle over thin and light notebooks flared back to life at IFA 2017 on Wednesday. Mere hours after Acer revealed the Switch 7 Black Edition, a 2-in-1 laptop with a detachable keyboard and dedicated graphics chips, Asus unleashed an army of svelte new ZenBook laptops equipped with Intel’s new quad-core 8th-gen Core CPUs and discrete Nvidia GPUs of their own. We loved the last ZenBook Flip that crossed PCWorld’s test bench, so let’s dig in!

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The Asus ROG Chimera brings blisteringly fast 144Hz G-Sync displays to gaming laptops

PC World - Wed, 2017-08-30 10:31

Asus was the first company to bring 120Hz refresh rates to gaming laptops, and now it’s pushing even further for gamers who demand smooth performance at a fast clip. At IFA 2017, Asus revealed the ROG Chimera G703 laptop, a beast of a notebook with a blistering 144Hz, 1080p display made more buttery-smooth by Nvidia’s G-Sync technology.

Asus didn’t say much about what you’ll find inside the 17.3-inch laptop, but Laptop Mag reports that it includes an unlocked Intel Core i7-7820HK processor and Nvidia’s powerful GeForce GTX 1080, which should have no problem keeping that 144Hz display fed even if you crank up your game’s graphics settings.

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IFA news: Google is talking up new products that leverage its Google Assistant

PC World - Wed, 2017-08-30 09:45
A number of new smart speakers will be on the show floor, along with new smart appliances from LG.

Microsoft's Cortana and Amazon's Alexa are going to work together

PC World - Wed, 2017-08-30 09:33

Cortana and Alexa just went from being rivals to being besties. Microsoft and Amazon’s respective digital assistants are teaming up to work together later this year, the companies surprisingly announced today.

That means you’ll be able to tap into Alexa’s smarts via Cortana on Windows 10 PCs and Microsoft’s mobile Cortana apps, or access Cortana via Amazon’s Echo devices and Alexa-enabled phones like the HTC U11 and Huawei Mate 9. You’ll need to specifically summon the assist, however, by saying “Cortana, open Alexa” or “Alexa, open Cortana.”

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38% off Dishonored 2 for XBox One, PS4 and PC - Deal Alert

PC World - Wed, 2017-08-30 09:08

Play your way in a world where mysticism and industry collide. Will you choose to play as Empress Emily Kaldwin or the royal protector, Corvo Attano? Will you make your way through the game unseen, make full use of its brutal combat system, or use a blend of both? How will you combine your character's unique set of powers, weapons and gadgets to eliminate your enemies? The story responds to your choices, leading to intriguing outcomes, as you play through each of the game's hand-crafted missions. Right now Dishonored 2 is discounted 38% down to $24.99, for the XBOX One, PS4 and PC versions. See this deal on Amazon.

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38% off Dishonored 2 for XBox One, PS4 and PC - Deal Alert

Mac World - Wed, 2017-08-30 09:08

Play your way in a world where mysticism and industry collide. Will you choose to play as Empress Emily Kaldwin or the royal protector, Corvo Attano? Will you make your way through the game unseen, make full use of its brutal combat system, or use a blend of both? How will you combine your character's unique set of powers, weapons and gadgets to eliminate your enemies? The story responds to your choices, leading to intriguing outcomes, as you play through each of the game's hand-crafted missions. Right now Dishonored 2 is discounted 38% down to $24.99, for the XBOX One, PS4 and PC versions. See this deal on Amazon.

To read this article in full or to leave a comment, please click here

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