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Updated: 56 min 19 sec ago

Sling TV serves up 14 days of free Sling Blue service for new subscribers who are stuck at home

Thu, 2020-03-26 12:08
Watch CNN, MSNBC, FOX News, AMC, FX, and more for free, no credit card or subscription required.

WiZ Connected BR30 Colors smart bulb review: An affordable Wi-Fi floodlight that doesn’t require a hub

Thu, 2020-03-26 06:00
WiZ’s smart BR30 floodlight is easy to set up, boasts more than a dozen dynamic color lighting modes, and it can even turn “dumb” light switches into smart ones.

10 easy ways to boost your router's performance while working at home

Thu, 2020-03-26 06:00

Home Wi-Fi problems were easy to ignore when it was just the occasional pause of a Netflix stream, or uploading a GIF took a few seconds longer than it should. But if you’re working at home—and your kids are learning at home—during this corona virus pandemic, you need your router to operate at peak performance.

Before you start shopping for a new router, there are lots of things you can do to improve the performance of your current hardware.

Tip: If speed is the issue, use an app such as Ookla’s Speedtest to see if performance improves between each troubleshooting step. Be aware, however, that this tool measures the speed of your connection to the internet, not the maximum speed your router is capable of achieving while transferring data over your local network.

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Microsoft offers a cool Xbox extension for Microsoft Edge: Xbox New Tab

Wed, 2020-03-25 16:10

Microsoft has published a new Xbox extension for Microsoft Edge that blurs the lines between working from home and sneaking a peek into your favorite game streams. And hey, who says your web browser can’t have a little fun?

The new Xbox New Tab extension for the new Microsoft Edge alters Edge’s layout schemes from its mix of inspirational and informational new-tab screens to add a fourth option: scenes and art from popular Xbox games, as well as quick links to popular game streams. (Oddly, all of the featured streams that were displayed linked to Twitch, but there’s also a dedicated shortcut to Microsoft’s own Mixer service.)

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Google Chrome terms of service are changing on March 31: Here’s what’s new

Wed, 2020-03-25 15:36

While you won’t be getting a new version of Chrome or Chrome OS for a while due to the coronavirus outbreak, Google has announced upcoming changes to its Terms of Service, effective March 31, that “make it easier for you to understand what we can expect from each other.” It’s the first time since October, 2017 that Google has updated the terms of service, and because you probably don’t want to read through the whole thing, we’ve summarized the important changes for you.

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

Wed, 2020-03-25 13:23

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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YouTube Music now displays song lyrics for selected tracks

Wed, 2020-03-25 11:57
Both the iOS and Android versions of the YouTube Music app now display song lyrics, although real-time lyrics aren't supported yet.

ATSC 3.0: How cord-cutters should plan for antenna TV's big upgrade

Wed, 2020-03-25 11:40
ATSC 3.0 (or Next Gen TV) is coming to replace today's over-the-air broadcasts, but it's still very early days.

Why I spent a bundle on a Wi-Fi 6 router for my work-from-home setup: Speed, speed, speed

Wed, 2020-03-25 11:00

As a long-time freelancer and work-from-homer, I’ve owned a lot of routers in my quest for the speediest and most pervasive possible Wi-Fi. I had the original Apple Airport, followed by the AirPort Extreme, the Linksys WRT3200ACM, and most recently, the Netgear Orbi RBK50.

Update 3/25: Newegg is selling the Orbi WiFi 6 router for $550 todayRemove non-product link, taking $150 off the MSRP with code 3FNMDS36. This version is slightly better than the model I own and wrote about here, with 1.2Gbps of bandwidth on the 2.5Ghz network versus 900Mbps on the Costco model I bought.

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Samsung brings Galaxy S20 features to the S10 and Note 10 as sales slump

Wed, 2020-03-25 10:59

If you’ve been itching to try out the Galaxy S20’s best features but don’t want to drop a ton of money on a new phone right now, you’ll soon have your chance. As part of a global update rolling out this month, Galaxy S10 and Note 10 users will gain a variety of software enhancements that were previously exclusive to the S20.

The most interesting is Single Take, a new shooting mode that takes some of the guesswork out of shooting. Instead of waiting for the right moment and tapping the shutter, Single Take captures more than a dozen photos and videos at once and automatically chooses the best shots. All you need to do is record video of a scene for up to 10 seconds and the AI will do all the work. Your mileage will most certainly vary, but when it works, it’s a delightful feature not unlike one you’d find on your Pixel or iPhone.

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31 great games you can play on laptops and low-end PCs

Wed, 2020-03-25 08:40
No graphics card? No problem.

Image by Cuphead

PC gaming is often synonymous with performance. Tech specs, frame rates, resolutions, settings menus—we dedicate thousands and thousands of words to these topics, spend hours obsessing over the details.

But for every person running Crysis there’s another fending off an upgrade and squeezing the last ounces of power out of their older or low-end desktop PC, or someone valiantly trying to game on a hand-me-down non-gaming laptop. This list is for you folks. Below, you’ll find a list of games that any PC can play. Or at least any from the last decade. Probably.

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Fiora Ultimate Wireless Desk Charger review: A sleek, affordable desktop charger

Wed, 2020-03-25 06:30

The Fiora Ultimate Wireless Desk Charger looks sleek, and frankly, pretty darn cool. It’s a small square slab of glass that has a premium quality to it.

The bottom and edges of the pad are made of aluminum. The power port is found on the back edge of the pad, while the front edge features an indicator light that’s green whenever the pad has power, and blue when it’s wirelessly charging a device.

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.

Looks are only part of the story, however. I put the Desk Charger through our standardized testing process, and the results were surprising.

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Six unfortunate truths cord-cutting newbies should know

Wed, 2020-03-25 06:00
I've encountered a few drawbacks in the year since I cut the cable TV cord.

Securam Touch smart lock review: It might look more at home on a military base, but this fingerprint reader-equipped lock offers solid security

Wed, 2020-03-25 06:00
A high price tag and a rough-around-the-edges app keep Securam’s first consumer lock from being a runaway success.

The best smart lock for a keyless home

Wed, 2020-03-25 06:00
Keys are yesterday’s tech, your smart home needs a smart door lock.

Minecraft transfers some 'Education Edition' content to 'Bedrock Edition' for kids stuck at home

Tue, 2020-03-24 14:30

Microsoft said Tuesday that it is making several educational activities normally reserved for its Minecraft: Education Edition available to the “Bedrock” editions found on the PC, Xbox, and other platforms—all for free.

It’s a recognition that kids may be stuck at home for weeks waiting out the coronavirus, stuck in an odd limbo between vacation and “learning from home.” To help, Microsoft has taken a number of lessons from its Minecraft: Education Edition and made them free to download until June 30, all as part of a new “Education” category. (Normally, Minecraft: EE content is specific to the classroom, with specific activities for students.)

Not only are there ways for kids to explore the inner workings of the human eye, or take a tour of the International Space Station, but the company has also thrown in 10 worlds from its creator community for free. Creators Everbloom, Jigarbov, Lifeboat, Razzleberries, and others have added worlds themed around renewable energy, marine biology, Greek history, and other topics. Normally, add-on content is paid for by “Minecoins,” which can be bought en masse by players. 

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YouTube will default to lower-resolution streams in the U.S. to save bandwidth

Tue, 2020-03-24 14:02

By default, YouTube will begin lowering the quality of its streams around the world to standard definition, reflecting the reality that the more people stream, the greater the toll that video places on internet infrastructure.

Fortunately, that doesn’t mean you’ll be cut off from HD streams. YouTube told Bloomberg that while the SD option will be on by default, you can still manually dial up a stream’s resolution by adjusting settings. Just click on the Settings gear at the lower right-hand corner of the video, choose the Quality button, and select the resolution you want to stream. The default resolution change will begin rolling out on Tuesday and will be in effect for the next 30 days, YouTube said.

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Wyze takes aim at Fitbit and Apple with new $25 fitness band and $20 scale

Tue, 2020-03-24 12:03
Wyze is breaking into the world of fitness tech with a new $25 band and $20 activity tracker.

2020 iPad Pro review roundup: No reason to rush to upgrade

Tue, 2020-03-24 11:40
The new iPad Pro brings a speedier chip, better microphones, and a new camera array, but early reviewers find little actual reason to upgrade if you already have one.

The best free PC games

Tue, 2020-03-24 09:01
Worth the price of admission

Image by Respawn

There was a time when “free-to-play” was a dirty term in the games industry. There are still terrible, exploitative free-to-play games on the market—more every day, in fact.

But occasionally—occasionally—we get something...miraculous. We get a free-to-play game that doesn’t try to con players out of money or make the design intentionally boring in order to make those purchasable unlocks more exciting.

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