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DirecTV Now review: The fall of a once-mighty bundle

Mon, 2019-08-12 06:00
DirecTV Now was a good option for cord-cutters for a time, but AT&T's hunt for profit has stripped away much of its appeal.

Nope, AMD didn't kill its reference Radeon 5700 cards barely a month after introducing them

Fri, 2019-08-09 18:41

Nothing would say failure more than killing a new graphics card a month after introducing it. So no, Internet, AMD did not kill its reference Radeon 5700 and Radeon 5700 XT after releasing the cards on July 7. Well, not really anyway.

This all appears to have been kicked off by a report on French site cowcotland.com posted on Thursday that said “Nous avons appris ce matin, par nos sources, que les cartes graphiques de référence AMD RADEON RX 5700 et RX 5700 XT étaient donc déjà en fin de vie.”

Translated by machine it apparently says: “We learned this morning, from our sources, that the AMD RADEON RX 5700 and RX 5700 XT reference graphics cards were already at the end of their life.”

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Best headphones: Our top picks for personal listening

Fri, 2019-08-09 13:45
Whether you're looking for an over-the-ear, on-ear, or in-ear model, we'll help you find the perfect pair.

Samsung says its Galaxy Home smart speaker is very much alive, despite its absence at Unpacked

Fri, 2019-08-09 12:21
After the long-awaited, Bixby-powered speaker failed to show at Unpacked 2019, Samsung promises that the Galaxy Home is still in the works.

Windows 10: The best tricks, tips, and tweaks

Fri, 2019-08-09 08:01
Digging deep into Windows 10

Image by Dan Masaoka/IDG

Windows 10’s constantly evolving nature means fresh features arrive twice per year, and with all the new goodies come a legion of new tweaks and tricks—some of which unlock powerful functionality hidden to everyday users. Others simply let you mold the Windows 10 experience into the shape you see fit. Here are some of the most useful tweaks, tricks, and tips we’ve found, starting with some of the highlights from the Windows 10 May 2019 Update (which includes more nifty hidden conveniences than we can include here).

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Logitech G Pro X review: The best headset Logitech's made yet

Fri, 2019-08-09 06:26

Great looking. Great sounding. Cheap. Usually you can only pick two of the three—and yet Logitech’s here to prove that old adage wrong with its new G Pro X gaming headset. Ostensibly geared toward esports enthusiasts (hence the “Pro” moniker), the G Pro X is a perfect solution for the masses as well, or at least the masses who can still stomach a wired headset.

Let’s get right to it.

Note: This review is part of our roundup of best gaming headsets. Go there for details on competing products and how we tested them. Round and round

The G Pro X may be Logitech’s best-looking headset yet. That’s quite a feat, given how much I loved the soft curves and piano black of the G533.  Hot damn, though—retro-futurist is the term I keep reaching for, as if Logitech somehow built a gaming headset for the 1940s, or at least lifted the aesthetic from broadcast equipment of the era.

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Audeara A-01 headphone review: These ANC cans promise to compensate for your hearing deficits

Fri, 2019-08-09 06:00
It's a brilliant idea, and the app that makes it possible works fairly well, at least with ANC turned on.

LG Dual Inverter Smart Air Conditioner review: This Wi-Fi-connected window air conditioner is a major step up

Fri, 2019-08-09 06:00
You can make your old window air conditioner smarter, but you can’t make it quieter or more efficient.

The Full Nerd ep. 102: Ice Lake on desktops, $200 Intel GPUs, and Lisa Su loves AMD

Thu, 2019-08-08 14:54

In this episode of The Full Nerd, Gordon Mah UngAdam Patrick Murray and Brad Chacos ponder what Intel’s 10th-gen Ice Lake mobile performance means for a desktop part. Then Brad tells us about the $200 Intel Xe GPU that was lost in translation, and we dive into how the rumors of Lisa Su leaving AMD are wrong.

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Best wireless charger: Ditch the headache of cables with our top pick

Thu, 2019-08-08 14:29

As convenience goes, wireless charging can’t be beat. You simply drop your phone onto the charger and walk away. Gone is the headache of managing cables that inevitably break or get lost.

Until recently, the main drawback to wireless chargers has been slow adoption and slow charging. This style of charging is still not ubiquitous, but you can now find Samsung, LG, Sony, and Moto phones that support it on the Android side, and Apple has adopted it for its iPhone lineup as well. And the technology itself is finally reaching a point where its speed is easier to live with, too.

Now that it’s a good time to go out and grab a stand or pad, we’ve tested some of the most popular models out there for both Android and iPhone, and discovered our favorites among the bunch. Read on for our findings, and check back periodically for our latest updates.

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Moshi SnapTo Magnetic Car Mount with Wireless Charging review: Stylish, reliable, but incomplete

Thu, 2019-08-08 14:10

There’s a lot to like about the $60 Moshi SnapTo car mount with wireless charging. It’s small, well designed, and looks great—not surprising since Moshi makes some fantastic-looking phone cases.

What I don’t like is that there’s no power supply included in the box. Instead, Moshi opted to leave it out since newer cars now have USB ports. The idea is that you’ll use the USB port to power the wireless charge pad. I understand the logic, but I don’t like the idea of having to give up a port to power a gadget.

Note: This review is part of our roundup of wireless charging pads. Go there for details on competing products and our testing methods for both Android phones and iPhones.

Also, the $60 purchase price doesn’t include a SnapTo case, which is required to use the pad. Those cases start at around $35 and are only available for iPhone models.

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Intel will bless Project Athena laptops with an 'Engineered for Mobile Performance' badge

Thu, 2019-08-08 09:00

Yes, it turns out that you will indeed need a stinking badge on your laptop. Intel on Thursday unveiled the "visual identifier" that will be used on laptops that meet its new Project Athena verification: a badge that says "Engineered for Mobile Performance," along with the Intel logo.

Project Athena is an ambitious, sprawling, and probably confusing Intel program to get PC makers to take laptops to the next level. It's designed to make thin-and-light laptops faster, longer lasting, and all around better for road warriors. Project Athena 1.0 laptops will focus on:

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Samsung Galaxy Note 10 vs Galaxy S10: Which high-priced premium phone should you buy?

Thu, 2019-08-08 07:00

The decision to buy the newest Note usually comes down to one main question: Do you want an S Pen? But with a second model joining the fray this year, the decision to buy a Note over a Galaxy S isn’t such an easy one. So we’ve broken it all down for you.

Galaxy S10 vs Galaxy Note 10: Display

Samsung has always used the Note 10 as the launching pad for its best and biggest displays. The Note 10 does that with the new plus model:

  • Note 10: 6.3-inch Full HD+ Dynamic AMOLED 2200x1080
  • Note 10+: 6.8-inch Quad HD+ Dynamic AMOLED 3040x1440
  • S10: 6.1-inch Quad HD+ Dynamic AMOLED 3040x1440
  • S10+: 6.4-inch Quad HD+ Dynamic AMOLED 3040x1440

One of these things is not like the other, and it’s the smaller Note 10. Not only is the size a tenth of an inch smaller than the S10+ and last year’s Note 9, it’s also much lower-resolution, with Samsung significantly paring down the pixels to reach 1080p. So the sweet spot here is the 6.4-inch S10+, but if you want the best of the best, the 6.8-inch Note 10+ is the way to go.

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Hands-on: Samsung’s Galaxy Book S debuts with the Snapdragon 8cx

Thu, 2019-08-08 06:30

Samsung’s Galaxy Books S debuted at the company’s Unpacked 2019 event in New York, a surprise addition to the widely expected announcement of the company’s Galaxy S10 and S10+ phablets. Slated to arrive in September starting at $1,000, the other surprise is the CPU inside: Qualcomm’s spanking-new, octo-core Snapdragon 8cx.

Qualcomm’s taken a few prior stabs at running a laptop on Snapdragon—no small feat given the need to emulate Windows 10. So far the results have been mixed at best, sacrificing perhaps a bit too much performance for battery life. However, when Qualcomm unveiled the Snapdragon 8cx late last year, the company claimed it was built from the ground up for laptops. The 8cx later posted promising benchmarks when we saw it on a reference laptop at Computex in Taipei. This is our first look at the new CPU in a shipping unit. 

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Disney+ and Netflix couldn't be more different

Thu, 2019-08-08 06:00
Disney+ versus Netflix: Why the two streaming services couldn't be more different

Samsung SmartThings Smart Bulb review: A $10 bulb built for the SmartThingsverse

Thu, 2019-08-08 06:00
Samsung SmartThings users will want to check out this inexpensive, dimmable, Zigbee, white-only LED smart bulb, but be aware of its limitations before you plop down your 10 bucks.

PicoBrew’s MultiBrew beer-brewing appliance will make coffee, tea, and more at the push of a button

Thu, 2019-08-08 06:00
For years, PicoBrew has made it easy to brew your own craft beer with its push-button Pico devices, and now it’s looking to pour you the perfect cup of coffee.

Why the more expensive Note 10+ is the only real choice for die-hard Note fans

Thu, 2019-08-08 06:00

For the first time in its 10-version history, the vaunted Galaxy Note comes in two sizes. In photos, that’s a good thing, with two gorgeous Notes dancing and cavorting with each other.

But unlike the Galaxy S10 and S10+, the Note 10 and Note 10+ have more differences than just simple screen size. Bottom line: If you’re a Note fan looking to upgrade, and you’re thinking of buying the smaller 6.3-inch Note 10, you’re going to be in for a surprise. If you want the latest and greatest Note—the one packed with all the features—you’re going to have to spend more money for the larger Note 10+.

Michael Simon/IDG

The Note 10+ is the only real Note Samsung is selling this year.

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Is anyone home? Samsung's Galaxy Home smart speaker is a no-show at Unpacked 2019

Wed, 2019-08-07 19:25
It’s been about six months since we’ve laid eyes on the Samsung Galaxy Home, and now it appears we’ll have to wait even longer for another sighting.

You can finally buy a 10th gen laptop: Dell's XPS 13 2-in-1 hits the shelves

Wed, 2019-08-07 19:20

The long wait for Intel's 10nm CPUs officially ended Wednesday, when Dell's XPS 13 2-in-1 went on sale on Dell.com. Once ordered, the company says the first wave of product should be ready by late August.

As the first laptop (that we know of) to go on sale with Intel's 10th-gen processor, Dell's XPS 13 2-in-1 7390 ushers in a new era. Well, the first real era, anyway. Intel actually "sold" small numbers of its first 10nm Cannon Lake CPUs earlier this year, but that doesn't really count.

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