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Bose Soundbar 500 review: Alexa, make me a sleek, smart sound bar

Tue, 2019-01-01 06:00
Bose's mid-range soundbar needs a bit of tonal adjustment to sound its best, but it provides a great way to incorporate Amazon's Alexa into your home theater.

Soundcast VG5 Bluetooth speaker review: Large and in charge in the great outdoors

Tue, 2019-01-01 06:00
The weatherized Soundcast VG5 pumps out the bass that's so often lacking in outdoor speakers. But it's truly for outdoor or large spaces, not the average indoor space.

B&H has some great year-end deals on GTX 1070 and 1070 Ti cards

Mon, 2018-12-31 09:46

It’s the last deal recommendation of 2018, and we’re going out in gamer style. B&H Photo Video has two great deals on Nvidia GeForce GTX graphics cards from EVGA. It’s not clear when these deals expire so I’d suggest taking advantage as soon as possible if you’re in the market for a new GPU. To get either of the deals mentioned today you have to click the Clip Coupon button above the price on the product page.

First up is the EVGA GeForce GTX 1070 Ti SC for $360Remove non-product link. That’s not quite as good as the MSI card we saw last week for $339, but $360 is still a good deal considering most 1070 Ti cards start at $400. The GTX 1070 Ti is a solid choice for 1440p gaming on faster gaming displays such as 144Hz. If you’re gaming at 1080p you can just max out everything and have a great experience. 1070 Ti will also tear apart pretty much any VR games you throw at it.

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Tech that died in 2018

Mon, 2018-12-31 06:30

As 2018 draws to a close, we bid adieu to many products and services in our beloved world of consumer technology. Some were old stalwarts that finally gave way to the passage of time. Others were short-lived trends, or ideas quickly abandoned. Here’s our look at this year’s greats and "not-so-greats"—those that passed into the history books or were sent straight to null.

We’ve got a look at social media fails, Google’s execution block, wearables, software, and a few other gems that left us in 2018.

Social Media Fizzlers Thinkstock

Social media is always a wasteland of detritus, as Facebook and Twitter ( mostly Facebook) continue to drag us slowly toward a surveillance state. Klout gave up trying on May 25, 2018, when owner Lithium Technologies shut down the site. Klout tried to add value to social media by ranking users with a numerical “Klout Score,” purportedly representing each person’s influence online.

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Microsoft's wins, fails, and WTF moments of 2018

Mon, 2018-12-31 06:10

Looking back at Microsoft’s 2018, you could make the argument that the company ended on an all-time high. After all, it’s the most valuable company in the world.

But our readers buy Microsoft products, not Microsoft stock. From that perspective (and with all due respect to Microsoft’s enterprise business, which isn’t part of what we cover here at PCWorld), Microsoft’s record was conservative and somewhat underwhelming, with a few exceptions. Microsoft added merely a flourish or two to its existing Surface lineup, for instance, and both feature updates to Windows 10 have turned out to be fairly inconsequential. 

As we’ve done in recent years, we list the highlights, low points, and yes, “what the hell was that??!” moments, closing with what we think Microsoft needs to work on most for 2019.

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Eufy RoboVac 30C review: A reliable cleaner gets app control and smart-home integration

Mon, 2018-12-31 06:00
This budget-priced robot vacuum from Eufy gets new features while remaining affordably priced.

Eufy RobotVac 30C review: A reliable cleaner gets app control and smart-home integration

Mon, 2018-12-31 06:00
This budget-priced robot vacuum from Eufy gets new features while remaining affordably priced.

Gjemeni USB couch review: You’ll get a charge out of this versatile convertible sofa

Mon, 2018-12-31 06:00
What better place for USB charging ports than the furniture you sit in every day? Gjemeni goes the extra mile to build 110-volt AC outlets into its tech-savvy couch.

Essential is no longer selling phones, but Andy Rubin still wants us to believe

Sat, 2018-12-29 08:41

Apparently Essential doesn't feel like a full product catalogue are all that necessary to a sound business plan. Following a Bloomberg report that claimed the fledgling and flailing phone maker headed by Android creator Andy Rubin has slashed its workforce by 30 percent and was prepping the company for a sale, Essential has now stopped selling its namesake product, the PH-1, a titanium-and-ceramic beauty of a handset that never quite lived up to its own hype.

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Amazon's Digital Day is here with great deals on a Fire HD tablet, PC apps, and content

Fri, 2018-12-28 10:56

There are only a few days left in 2018, but that’s still plenty of time for one last big sales event from Amazon. The online retailer is having its third annual Amazon Digital Day on Friday until just before midnight Pacific time. The deals are mostly for digital goods such as desktop software, comics, videos, and streaming subscriptions. Here’s our pick of the top five deals of the day.

Fire HD 10 Amazon

Digital content requires something to play it on, and Amazon is knocking $50 off the MSRP of the Fire HD 10Remove non-product link to $99.99. We’ve seen the Fire HD 10 hit this price several times already during the holidays, but it’s always nice to see a solid tablet at such a good price. The Fire HD 10 features a 1080p display and 32GB storage. It’s also an easy gateway to Amazon’s digital storefront and includes a free three-month trial of Audible.

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Best iPhone screen protectors: Keep your screen flawless

Fri, 2018-12-28 07:00
Screen protectors are a hassle, but a necessary hassle. To keep your display pristine, we've rounded up our favorite screen protectors for the iPhone.

12 of the best indie PC games you might have missed in 2018

Fri, 2018-12-28 06:30

It has been one hell of a year for indie games, as evidenced by our 2018 Game of the Year list. Nine out of the ten entries on that list were indies, which almost negates the need for us to do our traditional “Games You Missed” list as well.

Almost, but not quite. Our Game of the Year list covered the best of the best, but there are still a bunch of smaller experiences worth highlighting I think—games like TimespinnersGraveyard KeeperExapunks, and...well, read on to find out. Below you’ll find a selection of games I enjoyed this year but didn’t get around to discussing as much. Hopefully there’s something you missed, rescued from the void at the last second before we roll into 2019.

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Calendar whirls: Presenting all the best movies to stream this New Year’s Eve weekend

Fri, 2018-12-28 06:00
Here are 12 great movies to watch while you ring in the New Year.

Reolink Go review: 4G LTE connectivity and heavy weatherization lets you install this security cam anywhere

Fri, 2018-12-28 06:00
This home security camera connects to T-Mobile's LTE network, so you can set it up just about anywhere—no router required.

Razer Kraken Tournament Edition review: A messy but interesting refresh for Razer's no-frills headset line

Fri, 2018-12-28 05:41

The last Razer headset we reviewed, the Nari Ultimate, packed one hell of a gimmick: custom-built drivers that respond to bass presence by literally vibrating against your head. Silly? Absolutely. Still, I enjoyed my time with it.

Not every Razer product is built on gimmicks though, and as if to prove the point Razer's also released the Nari Ultimate's polar opposite this fall: another iteration of the no-frills Kraken line, this one dubbed the Razer Kraken Tournament Edition. Is it really tournament-ready? We donned one to find out.

This review is part of our ongoing roundup of the best gaming headsets. Go there for information on other competing products and how we test them. 

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Apple's gaslighting over bent iPads is a stunning response to a serious problem

Thu, 2018-12-27 10:22
Apple wants you to believe that bent iPads are normal—and that’s not acceptable.

Boost your PC's sound with an all-time low price on the Logitech's awesome 2.1 Z523 speaker system

Thu, 2018-12-27 10:19

If you unwrapped a new PC under the tree, there’s one thing you need to get the best movie and game experience: a set of awesome speakers. And today Amazon is selling a great system for half price: the popular 2.1 Logitech Speaker System Z523 is down to $50, matching an all-time lowRemove non-product link.

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Android Confidential: The Android phones and features that flew and flopped in 2018

Thu, 2018-12-27 08:16

2018 sure was a fun year to be an Android fan. While the usual flagship updates to the Galaxy and Pixel phones dominated the headlines, the year saw a steady stream of announcements and upgrades competing to grab our attention (and our money). 

There were so many awesome phones in 2018, it’s nearly impossible to pick a favorite. Some had killer features, some had great designs, and nearly all of them had incredible cameras. So for the last Android Confidential column of the year, I decided to tackle the best and worst phones of the year from a different angle. Here are the things that stood out for me in 2018:

Most underrated camera feature in 2018 Winner: Top Shot, Google Pixel 3 IDG

A lot of words have been written about Google’s Night Sight feature on the Pixel 3, and rightful so. It’s a fantastic, even mind-blowing feature that turns unusable low-light shots into something you can share on Instagram. What isn’t getting nearly enough attention is Top Shot. This Pixel 3 feature lets you choose from a selection of images taken before and after the original pic so you can make sure you got the moment right.

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How to use Windows 10's Your Phone experience

Thu, 2018-12-27 07:24

Microsoft’s Your Phone app bridges the gap between your Windows 10 PC and a smartphone, allowing quick interactions with images shot with your phone’s camera and the ability to send and receive texts right from your PC. Having tried, and abandoned, using the phone as your PC with Continuum, Microsoft apparently settled upon an assistant role via the Your Phone app. Eventually, Microsoft hopes that Your Phone will evolve into something even bigger, so it’s worth checking out.

The idea behind Your Phone is focus: Pulling out your phone is an unnecessary distraction within Windows’ world. Microsoft feels a text should be processed in the same way as an email, as a quick interaction that can be dealt with and then set aside. 

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The 2018 cord-cutter awards

Thu, 2018-12-27 06:00
The cord-cutter awards: How the best streaming services and devices got better in 2018.