Bluetooth headphones are all the rage. With Apple and others dropping the trusty old 3.5mm headphone jack, you can either carry an extra, easy-to-lose adapter around, or you can spend a few bucks on a decent set of wireless headphones. The Audiofly AF100W bluetooth headphones are an in-ear set that sit comfortably and have a flexible over-the-ear design that keeps them in place while you're exercising to some tunes. But how did they sound?
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The way we interact with the internet has advanced rapidly in the past decade. For some, plucking out a smartphone and asking a virtual assistant for advice has become the norm, but that doesn’t mean we’re going to consign the humble keyboard to the depths of history any time soon.
Microsoft’s Modern Keyboard shows how far you can take a simple desktop keyboard, if you’re willing to pay for it.
If you rely on a few different alarms to get up in the morning -- smart lights that blast on at a certain time, a smart speaker placed far away, and your trusty smartphone alarm -- the macOS app Wakefy adds another tool to your arsenal of awakening. It isn't perfect, but it performs well enough that we'd consider adding it to our morning collection.
There are times when you need a piece of tech but the prices of new gear make it prohibitive. That was the situation I faced recently. I needed a portable computer to use while travelling. For quite some time I'd made do with a tablet but there are a few things I need to do that, while possible on a tablet, were costing me a lot of time. So, I started looking around at used and refurbished gear and picked up a used 11-inch MacBook Air for $400. So, how does this almost seven year old portable cope with today's world?
One-star reviews, in addition to being the least helpful kind of review, are also the longest and the worst-spelled. Data journalism blog Priceonomics analysed 100,000 online product reviews and found that 40 per cent of one-star reviews have at least one spelling mistake, vs. under 30 per cent of five-star reviews.
When Apple announced the iPhone X on 12 September 2017 you'd have thought they had made peace in the Middle East, cured all disease and made a decent DC superhero movie. But the reality is they simply released a new, very expensive smartphone. They skipped version nine, delivering the iPhone 8 and iPhone X that day. I've been using an iPhone X for a little while now and have found that it's a story of compromises as Apple lays the foundation for their next generation of smartphones.
Over recent weeks, I've been testing three different mesh network kits, the Linksys Velop, TP-Link Deco and Netgear Orbi. All three are competent but have different strengths and weaknesses. And while they all, more or less do the same thing - deliver wireless network access over a large are - they do differ in some ways. Here's where I'd spend my money.
TP-link has build a reputation for making great networking kit that doesn't cost an arm and leg. The Deco is their push into the world of mesh networks. Their three node kit is much like the Linksys Velop I looked at earlier this week in that it is set up using an app but it does differ when you get into the details.
Mesh network systems promise to increase wifi range without sacrificing performance as devices move further from the network core. They do this by using two or more access points that work in concert. Over the next few days, I'm going to look at three different systems; the Linksys Velop, Tp-link Deco and Netgear Orbi. Today, I start with the Velop system.
For over a year now, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles director Dave Green and actor Joe Cobden have been posting increasingly elaborate 12-second video reviews to Yelp. Along with some friends, they have made 41 videos about L.A. restaurants, often using special effects, stunts, and stop-motion, that recall the golden age of Vine.
While cloud storage has put a huge dent in the need for small storage devices to act as a kind of sneaker-net, there's still a place for external storage devices. When it comes to remote backups or moving large volumes of data, external hard drives are still very useful. With portable hard drives, reliability and performance are of paramount concern. That's why I've been looking forward to testing the Western Digital My Passport SSD and LaCie Rugged USB-C drives out.
iOS: When you're a few hours into your favourite tower defence game, an unwarranted pop-up can break your concentration and end a previously flawless run through a challenging level. Luckily, one of the many updates in iOS 11 is designed to curb the number of pop-ups and interruptions from app developers looking for positive feedback. The new option lets you rid yourself of the dreaded app rating request (or, as I like to call it, the beggar's box).
Despite the world being increasing paperless in some things, there are still times when paper is needed. Whether that's for providing clients or colleagues with reports, school projects or paperwork for banks or other "official" institutions the world still needs paper. The Fuji Xerox DocuPrint CM315z looks like your run-of-the-mill small office multi-function device but I think there's a little more to it.
Privacy and security should be at the top of mind for anyone using a computer. Generally, this means having a strong password or passphrase when you log on, possibly biometric security and 2FA as well, and encrypting data. But the hardware we use everyday can go a little further. HP's Elitebook x360 is an example of what can be done on the hardware side to protect your data.
A year after the disastrous Galaxy Note7, Samsung is back with another Note, its flagship big-screen smartphone that is the best it'll build in 2017. Welcome to the Note8 -- it's a masterpiece, an agenda-setting phone that's the first of a new breed of devices that could well replace your entire PC.
The Galaxy Note8 faces stronger competition than ever, but that's a great thing for you, the customer. It catches up to Apple and its competitors with an excellent dual camera, and it streaks ahead with the best screen of any phone ever. If this is the benchmark for top-end phones, I'm really excited to see what this forces everyone else to come up with.
Sifting between the well-priced gems and the scammy junk can be a difficult task when shopping online, so it's no wonder that most of us rely on product reviews to help us narrow down the choices. The most careful of us (read: Me) will even go as far as to see how many reviews something has to help determine how well-established and liked a given item is.