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Updated: 1 hour 6 min ago

Bad headline advice: Driving home the point with a hammer

Tue, 2020-02-04 06:15

They say you should never read the comments but sometimes it’s the headlines you shouldn’t read. Today we will look at bad headlines and the pundits who love to make them.

Writing for ZDNet, Bill Detwiler says “Foldable phones: Why you should wait for a folding 5G Apple iPhone.”

Unicorns: Why you should wait for a rainbow-colored one.

Okay, yes, like Detwiler, The Macalope also advises you not to buy any of the current crop of foldable phones unless you have been presented with some kind of Brewster’s Millions-type situation and even then you can probably do better. But if you’re waiting for a folding iPhone, you could be waiting a long time. Possibly forever. Better hold out for the 6G folding iPhone or even the 27H with the retro-reflective panels that render it invisible to the naked eye or the QuadrillionZ that’s more of a concept than a physical device.

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Sony 360 Reality Audio review: This headphone-virtualization system expands music beyond your head

Tue, 2020-02-04 06:00
Sony's new immersive audio format sounds fantastic with headphones.

Vizio SB2021n-G6 review: This budget 20-inch soundbar is the perfect match for a second TV

Tue, 2020-02-04 06:00
While it lacks HDMI inputs and Wi-Fi connectivity, this DTS Virtual:X-equipped soundbar boasts impressive and immersive sound for just $150.

Best antivirus for Mac: Protect yourself from malicious software

Mon, 2020-02-03 13:09

Macs may be a far less tempting target for malware and viruses, but they’re not immune from attack. Even if you don’t care about adware or being used as a means to infect users on other platforms, it’s still possible to fall victim to ransomware, password theft, or stolen iPhone backups.

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The final nail may have been driven into BlackBerry’s coffin

Mon, 2020-02-03 12:48
TCL has announced it will no longer make BlackBery Android phones as of August 31, 2020, which comes as a surprise to absolutely no one.

Apple is now doing house calls for some iPhone repairs

Mon, 2020-02-03 11:13

People who live near an Apple Store have long enjoyed the benefits of speedy and convenient iPhone repair, but for some, repair is about to get even easier. Apple is now offering “onsite service” for customers in some cities so you won’t need to plan your lunch hour around an iPhone repair.

As first reported by Macrumors, Apple will send a third-party technician to your home or office for common repairs, including cracked screens. It’s unclear whether repairs would be completed on-site or if technicians will take your hardware back to their facility for repair. The service is currently offered in San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York, Chicago, Houston, and Dallas.

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Airo Antivirus review: A promising start for a Mac-focused antivirus

Mon, 2020-02-03 06:30

There are a number of options for antivirus on the Mac, but few are exclusively focused on macOS. That’s what inspired AiroAV to release its first antivirus solution for the Mac desktop in early 2019. With offices in San Diego and Tel Aviv, Airo aims to be the primary choice for Mac users looking to deal with and prevent Mac-specific malware.

So far Airo is doing very well, though the only testing house to look at Airo is AV-Test. In December 2019, AV-Test gave Airo a 100 percent rating based on its detection of widespread and prevalent malware test, which had 145 samples.

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How to send messages to select iCloud accounts directly to the trash

Mon, 2020-02-03 06:12

For folks who have had Apple-managed email addresses for some time, back to the MobileMe or .Mac (dot Mac) days, you may find those old addresses are unusable because they receive mostly spam. You might have stopped giving out an address ending with me.com or mac.com years ago, and rely just on your @icloud.com address.

Unfortunately, the email keeps coming! If you had an Apple account as of July 9, 2008, it will always receive messages to account @mac.com, @me.com, and @icloud.com. If the account was created between that date and September 19, 2012, it will always accept messages to @me.com and @icloud.com.

Apple doesn’t offer a way to disable specific domains. But you can use rules to filter messages before you even see them.

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How to protect your Ring account with the new Control Center privacy dashboard

Mon, 2020-02-03 06:00
Ring has updated its app with new and improved privacy tools. Here’s how to make the most of them.

If your Philips Hue lights aren’t responding, maybe it’s time to move your Hue Bridge

Mon, 2020-02-03 06:00
Did all the Hue lights in your house just become unresponsive? Wireless interference could be to blame, and moving your Hue Bridge might be the answer.

'Secret Oops!' impressions: A rare game that feels more fun in augmented reality

Fri, 2020-01-31 19:00

Secret Oops! wants us to believe that Charles is the world’s dumbest spy, and yes, he kind of looks the part. He sounds a lot like Overwatch’s Reinhardt (sans armor), and you can usually find him dizzy and confused at the start of each level, sometimes even face-down in liquids of questionable origin.

But hear me out: Maybe Chuck just has a world of faith in his coworkers. In this multiplayer augmented reality game, that includes you and up to three other players. You’re “the guys in the van,” so to speak—the Simon Pegg character in Mission: Impossible or Penny in Inspector Gadget—and you’re guiding him through a 3D digital model that reminds me a lot of the tabletop holograms in The Expanse. Charles tiptoes through every facility he infiltrates, fully confident that you’ll use your “Spymatic 3000” to open the sealed doors and turn off the laser walls and security lights that threaten to thwart him from the nabbing the goods. Should he run into one of those laser walls, the screen blasts you with an accusatory OOPS! That “oops” isn’t for Charles, silly; it’s on you for failing him.

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How to buy a refurbished Mac, MacBook, iPhone, or iPad from Apple

Fri, 2020-01-31 16:16

Looking for a way to save some money on the latest Apple products? Consider a refurbished MacBook, refurbished iPhone, or refurbished iPad from the Apple Certified Refurbished store. A refurbished product is just like a new, but at a lower price.

Here’s a quick guide with links to the best deals you can find on the refurb store, along with a FAQ guide if you want to know more about the ins and outs of the Apple Certified Refurbished store and buying a refurbished MacBook, desktop Mac, iPhone, or iPad. We make a recommendation of what to buy, but feel free to check out the store inventory to find the right model for you.

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Thunderbolt 3 adapter guide: How to connect an iPhone, display, hard drive, and more to a MacBook Pro or MacBook Air

Fri, 2020-01-31 14:30

The new MacBook Pro comes with two or four external ports, depending on the model you pick. And the new MacBook Air has a pair of ports. But those ports are only of one type: Thunderbolt 3, which is compatible with USB-C.

But you probably have devices that use USB-A, Thunderbolt 1, Thunderbolt 2, DisplayPort, HDMI, or something else. How do you connect these devices? With an adapter.

If you’re planning to buy a new MacBook Pro or MacBook Air, make sure you set aside a considerable amount of cash for the adapters you need. Apple doesn’t include any in the box, except for a power adapter.

Your best bet is to get a combination dock, like the Satechi Slim Aluminum Type-C Multi-Port Adapter ($60 on Amazon). It connects via USB-C, and includes a USB-C pass-through port, two USB 3.0 ports, and an HDMI port with 4K (30Hz) support. With this, you don’t have to carry around multiple adapters.

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3 products that need extra attention from Apple in 2020

Fri, 2020-01-31 07:15

When you tell someone that Apple made $90 billion in its most recent quarter, it might sound like the kind of ridiculous number that you throw out there to emphasize a huge, unthinkable quantity—but no, the company literally generated ninety billion dollars in revenue.

It was a banner quarter for the iPhone, Wearables, and Services, all areas that Apple spent a lot of time on in 2019. But as 2020 gets underway, it seems clear that there are other areas that haven’t received a commensurate amount of attention. Places that Apple’s products aren’t performing as well as they could—and not just in a financial sense. No company fires on all cylinders all the time, but with those previously mentioned areas holding their own, perhaps it’s time for Apple to show a little love to a few of its products that have fallen by the wayside.

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Now that the Apple Maps redesign is complete, here are 6 more things it needs

Fri, 2020-01-31 06:15

If you haven’t had a reason to open Apple Maps in the past day or so, you’re in for a treat. Apple has completely revamped Maps across the United States, with vivid detail, better coverage, and more precise addresses across the U.S. It’s a big leap and it shows just how far Apple Maps has come since its beginnings.

But while the new design certainly goes a long way toward closing the sizable gap between it and Google Maps, there are still a few features we’d like to see added a little further down the road.

Integrated Siri

You can obviously use Siri to get directions and find places of interest, but once you’re in Maps, Siri isn’t any smarter or aware. Ask a question and the Siri interface still takes over your whole screen. So even though Siri is built into Maps via turn-by-turn directions, the integration isn’t as deep as it could be.

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How to search your music library in macOS Catalina’s Music app

Fri, 2020-01-31 06:15

iTunes is gone in macOS Catlina, and the new Music app that replaces it is fairly similar in broad strokes. However, some users are having trouble finding how to search their own music library, as opposed to the iTunes Store.

When I tested this, typing any search into the Search field in the upper-left corner of the Music app produced results that I could switch by clicking one of three buttons in a lozenge in the upper-right corner: Apple Music, Your Library, and iTunes Store. When I selected Your Library, songs I’d purchased or ripped from CDs I owned appeared in the results.

IDG

You should see a lozenge containing three buttons to control which collection appears for search results. (Red rectangle added for emphasis.)

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AirTV 2 review: Antenna TV and Sling TV merge, with mixed results

Fri, 2020-01-31 06:00
The AirTV 2 adds over-the-air channels to Sling TV, but the new hardware fails to fix some old problems.

Best DVR for cord cutters

Fri, 2020-01-31 06:00
TiVo vs. Tablo vs. Channel Master vs. Plex: None are ideal, but one might work for you.

Best VPN services: Reviews and buying advice

Thu, 2020-01-30 16:23
Surfing the web through a virtual private network (VPN) can keep your identity and data safe and secure online. We show you what to look for in a VPN and help you pick the best one for your needs.

Apple’s new maps are finally available across the U.S.

Thu, 2020-01-30 15:31

Apple just announced that its rollout of new map data to the United States is complete. The new maps have been rolling out to the U.S. in waves, starting with northern California in 2018 and progressing through other major geographical regions throughout 2019. Apple had promised that the entire U.S. would be covered by the end of 2019, a deadline it appears to have just barely missed.

Apple says the maps experience will “begin rolling out across Europe in the coming months.”

The new maps contain much more detailed street information and coverage, tons of buildings and addresses that weren’t there before, and way more accurate labels. It’s a night-and-day difference compared to the prior map data, and makes using Apple Maps a dramatically better experience.

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