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Updated: 10 min 21 sec ago

Ring is rolling out its new Control Center dashboard

Thu, 2020-01-30 14:42
Owners of Ring video doorbells and other home security products are finally getting some essential privacy protections.

Ninjas! Bubble Tea! Piñatas! These are the 117 new emojis coming in 2020

Thu, 2020-01-30 13:32

Each year, we get new emojis on our iPhone, iPads, and Macs. They typically come with the new iOS and macOS updates in the fall (though sometimes they're added in a point-release shortly after). Who decides which new emojis we get?

Emojis are defined by a group called the Unicode Consortium, comprised of representatives from a number of hardware and software companies. They agree on updates to the Unicode Standard, which is a common means of encoding and representing text in digital formats. It's the foundation of transmitting and displaying text on nearly all modern digital platforms.

Emojis are a part of the Unicode standard, and the group gets together each year to decide which new icons will be added to the official list. On January 5, Unicode announced the final Emoji 13.0 list. These are the emojis all the different software platform makers will build into their software this year.

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Don’t be fooled by Apple TV+’s slow start

Thu, 2020-01-30 12:00

Apple TV+ is in its infancy, entering this world about three months ago, and already you can find critics saying it doesn’t have much of a chance of amounting to anything and that it should just go ahead and give up. One can only hope they don’t go around telling toddlers the same thing.

Part of me wants to dismiss this reaction as typical disdain for Apple—the dogged belief that the folks in Cupertino couldn’t possibly pull another rabbit out of their hats. But I’m especially weirded out because it shouldn’t be that surprising that a new studio would have to spend a little time getting on its feet, no matter how much cash it has for a crutch. Again, it’s barely been three months. 

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How to change the default font in Pages for Mac and iOS

Thu, 2020-01-30 09:00

The default font for body text in Apple’s Pages word processing app is 11-point Helvetica Neue, but you can easily change it to something more interesting through the Format panel that’s usually visible to the right of your document.

Open another document, though, and you’ll be back to Helvetica. If you always want a Pages document with your font of choice ready to go, you’ll have to make a couple of changes that aren’t very obvious. Here’s how to make them on both your Mac and your iPhone.

How to change the default font for Pages on Mac

First, open your Pages app. After that:

  1. Click Pages on the menu bar.

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Enjoy a free copy of the Macworld digital magazine!

Thu, 2020-01-30 08:00

Macworld has been chronicling Apple, its awesome products, and its generous ecosystem since the beginning—or, to be more precise, since 1984 when Steve Jobs announced the very first Macintosh and our founding editors launched Macworld magazine. We (regrettably) discontinued the print edition in 2014, but the magazine continues today in digital form. 

Today, we’d love to reacquaint you with the Macworld magazine experience, so please download this complimentary PDF copy of the February issue. Like what you see? On page 2 of this issue, you’ll find a link to purchase 12 issues of the Macworld digital magazine edition for just $9.99, a 50 percent discount. 

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LaCie Rugged SSD Pro review: External Thunderbolt/USB storage for the adventurer

Thu, 2020-01-30 07:15

For many users, an IP67-rated ruggedized portable SSD will be a rather expensive piece of storage overkill. However, for the adventurous few, the peace of mind LaCie’s Rugged SSD Pro will bring when you’re out in the world might well be worth the extra expense.


The Rugged SSD Pro is almost as fast as many internal drives. NVMe over Thunderbolt 3 will do that for you.

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iOS 14 wishlist, Apple Q1 2020 earnings, ten years of the iPad, and more

Thu, 2020-01-30 06:15

What do we want to see in iOS 14? The iPad turned ten this week. How much money did Apple make this past quarter? All this and more on this episode of the Macworld Podcast.

This is episode 683 with Jason Cross, Leif Johnson, and Roman Loyola.

Listen to episode 683

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The best smart garage door controllers deliver convenience and peace of mind

Thu, 2020-01-30 06:00
Even if you use your garage only as an oversized storage locker, you’ll wonder how you ever got along without a smart controller for your existing garage door opener.

Cord cutting gear's next frontier: Better sound

Thu, 2020-01-30 06:00
Streaming player makers like Roku are looking to home theater audio as the next big thing.

Best true wireless earbuds: Free yourself from the tyranny of cords

Wed, 2020-01-29 15:23

Earbud makers have been busy doing away with wires—a good thing whether or not your phone still has a headset jack. You no longer have to deal with cords if you don’t want to. True wireless earbuds connect to one another and your audio source via Bluetooth.

No wires mean no inline microphones or controls, but truly wireless earbuds sound just as good as traditional Bluetooth counterparts (for better or worse). They also boast all of the features we’ve come to expect from earbuds designed to work with your smartphone, tablet, or PC.

Since Apple’s AirPods became a runaway hit, an endless stream of companies have rolled out their own true wireless earbuds and earphones. As you might expect, not all of them are worth your time or money—so we’ve got your back with buying suggestions to meet a wide variety of needs.

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Report: AirPower Lite, Apple Tags, and AirPods Studio may be on the way in 2020

Wed, 2020-01-29 11:46

While we’re all but certain to be getting a 13-inch MacBook Pro with scissor keys, an iPad Pro refresh, and an iPhone SE2 at some point before the summer, a new report from analyst Ming Chi-Kuo suggests that Apple might have a few surprises up its sleeve, as well.

While the report is extremely light on details, there are a couple of intriguing tidbits. As 9to5Mac reports, Kuo claims that Apple is gearing up to release “a smaller wireless charging mat, UWB tag, and a high-end Bluetooth headphone” sometime in the first half of 2020. Those would all represent new product categories for the company.

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Anker Soundcore Liberty Air 2 review: Packed with gimmicks

Wed, 2020-01-29 08:00

As Apple pushes new versions of its flagship earbuds, the AirPods, into higher and higher price ranges, it leaves a lot of room for competitors to undercut it on price. That’s exactly what Soundcore is doing with its new Liberty Air 2 true wireless earbuds. From the shape of the protruding microphone arms to the wireless charging case, the Liberty Air 2 earbuds look, sound, and feel a lot like the AirPods for a lot less money.

I don’t want to use a phrase like “you get what you pay for,” in relation to the Apple Airpods since I prefer some earbuds—like the Monoprice True Wireless Plus—that are even cheaper than the $99 Liberty Air 2. But, in a comparison strictly between the AirPods and the Liberty Air 2, the Air 2 do feel like less of a bargain. Soundcore tried to make the Air 2 stand out with some interesting features, like better microphones and a companion app with equalizers customized for your individual hearing profile. Unfortunately, these features all fell flat for me.

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Apple’s record quarter: Don’t try to trick Tim Cook

Wed, 2020-01-29 07:15

Well, here we are again. Apple once again announced its biggest financial quarter of all-time on Tuesday. During the three months that ended calendar 2019, Apple generated a staggering $91.8 billion in revenue, up from the previous record of $88.3 billion generated at the end of calendar-year 2017. The company also generated a record $22.2 billion in profit. Sometime this decade, Apple’s going to drop a $100 billion holiday quarter on us, and I’m not sure my brain can count that high.

In any event, after dunking on us all via press release, it was time for Apple’s executives to do their quarterly ritual of spending an hour on the phone with a handful of questioning financial-industry analysts and a bunch of silent journalists. There’s always something interesting to glean from that call, especially when Apple CEO Tim Cook and CFO Luca Maestri show restraint and don’t just spend an hour running around the conference room high-fiving.

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How to create a backup strategy with terabytes of files

Wed, 2020-01-29 06:15

I recall my first hard drive: 60MB (that’s megabytes) for a mere $600. A bargain! Now, a 6 terabyte drive—one that stores 100,000 times more data—costs as little as $100. The problem is no longer storage, but backing up that storage so that when (not if, sadly) your drive fails, you have not lost precious trillions of bytes of images and movies.

I’ve advocated a typical strategy for years: make a nightly clone of your startup volume for ease of fast recovery; have a secured internet-hosted backup, at least for critical documents; and swap two drives on a regular basis for local backup, so you always have a store of all your older data that can’t be destroyed by fire or other disaster or stolen from your home or work. (A simpler version is often summarized as 3-2-1: three copies, two local, one offsite.)

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Apple cracks $90B in a single quarter for the first time as the iPhone returns to glory

Tue, 2020-01-28 17:23

What a difference a year makes. Just 12 months after Apple surprisingly revised down its quarterly earnings and reported lagging iPhone sales, the grass is much greener on this side of the calendar. You might say Midnight Greener.

For Apple’s first fiscal quarter of 2020 (which includes the final three months of 2019), the company posted record revenue of $91.8 billion, topping its own estimates and besting last year’s holiday quarter by nearly 10 percent. iPhone sales alone were up more than 7 percent as the iPhone 11 and iPhone 11 Pro proved to be a strong holiday seller. That’s not quite a record—Apple sold $61 billion worth of iPhones in the 2018 holiday quarter—but it’s the strongest results in two years.

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Ring admits its Android app uses third-party trackers following EFF report

Tue, 2020-01-28 12:28
Ring's Android app uses multiple third-party trackers to deliver customer data to companies other than Amazon.

When it comes to augmented reality, it’s glasses or bust

Tue, 2020-01-28 07:15

Augmented reality (AR) is the next big thing. At least, that’s what Tim Cook believes, and he’s not alone. There are several companies betting on AR as the next great computing platform. Apple has been building tools for AR development for iPhone and iPad for a few years now.

AR is here today on our iPhones and iPads. Why isn’t it a bigger deal? Why aren't everyday users as excited about the potential of AR as Tim Cook is? Why aren’t all our everyday apps rushing to make it a core feature, or even an essential one?

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Complaining season: The 2020 iPhones

Tue, 2020-01-28 06:15

If it’s January, it must be time to start complaining about the fall iPhones. Waiting until February is for suckers.

The expected design of the iPhone 12 is a radical departure from every iPhone since the iPhone 6, doing away with the rounded edges in favor of a flat edge like that of the current iPad line. Further, Apple’s expected to add a smaller phone to the fall lineup, a 5.4-inch iPhone 12, that will be smaller than the iPhone 8.

Sounds like a big switch after six years with the same edge design and three without a new phone that can even remotely be considered small. So what’s the take over at the Forbes contributor network and lightly-used holiday ham resale outlet? Well, Gordon Kelly is ready to give us the 411 on the 12. (Tip o’ the antlers to Todd.)

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Aqara Smart Home Starter Kit review: This muddy smart home kit has a glimmer of promise

Tue, 2020-01-28 06:00
This bare-bones, but budget-friendly kit covers just the basics and is very weak in terms of home security.

Best smart lock for a keyless home

Tue, 2020-01-28 06:00
Keys are yesterday’s tech, your smart home needs a smart door lock.