CES 2017 IoT

CES 2017 Gaming and VR Explosion!

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CES 2017 Gaming and VR Explosion!

This CES 2017 gaming and VR are back and bigger than ever…

CES 2017 is here and live in Las Vegas. Finally something I can enjoy in Las Vegas beyond taking selfies in front of themed hotels.

Last year gaming and virtual reality were big at CES and this year, they’ve gotten bigger.

Nvidia kicked things off at a preshow keynote, showing off their new gaming tech. The new Shield is their latest offering at bridging gaming and steaming content for home theaters.

CES 2017 Gaming and VR
CES 2017 Gaming and VR

Not only are the traditional VR headsets everywhere, but new forms of Virtual Reality and AR (Augmented Reality) are taking shape.

For games who want to get more into the action, there’s accessories and fans to simulate flying like superman. Or you can try on these VR shoes.

Alternately, you can use this disc-like device to get your feet in the game while seated.

For more CES 2017 gaming and VR news and other tech you need to know, keep your browser right here on JaredBodine.com

CES 2017 Gaming and VR
CES 2017 Gaming and VR
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Google Wifi Unboxing, Setup and Review

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Google Wifi Unboxing, Setup and Review

Today Google finally released to the world Google Wifi. In this video I share with you a Google Wifi unboxing, setup and review.

I have more to say about Google Wifi…

I assume it goes without saying (and so I didn’t really say it) that this mesh system allows for great whole-home coverage. Probably should have added that to the list of Pros… 🙂

Here’s a more detailed list of my Pros and Cons:

Pros:

  • Easy Setup
  • Handles many devices
  • Whole-home coverage
  • Simple maintenance via app

Cons:

  • Limited setup options and features
  • Limited LAN connections for hard wired devices
  • Can only be controlled via Android or iOS apps
  • Requires active internet to manage network

The price of $129 for one and $299 for three does not make it cheap, but within range of the competitors like Luma and Eero.  Google lets you know that all three is not really needed for many homes. This is what they recommend for various sizes:

Google Wifi Unboxing - range
Google Wifi Unboxing – Range

Seeing as how you can’t buy a 2-pack, I’d say pay the extra $40 to get a three pack instead of two 1-packs. Better to have more coverage than less.

That’s about all I wanted to add that I didn’t say in my Google Wifi Unboxing, Setup and Review video.

As always, I’m happy to answer questions or give tech advice. Feel free to chat me up.

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Apple MacBook Pro 2016 Unveiled – 45 Second Reviews

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Apple MacBook Pro 2016 Unveiled – 45 Second Review

Today we saw the Apple MacBook Pro 2016 unveiled.

Apple held a second “special event” in as many months. At what point are these not special any more?

Rather than spend 82 minutes of your time watching it, let me tell you all you need to know about it in a svelte 45 seconds…

After asserting that all people unanimously love the iPhone 7 despite the missing headphone jack, Tim Cook announced the future of Apple TV, a single app called TV. It’s like having an app that duplicates what the home screen should do. It makes sense on an iPad or iPhone, though.

Apple MacBook Pro 2016 Touch Bar
Apple MacBook Pro 2016 Touch Bar

The Apple MacBook Pro 2016 is getting a much needed refresh on the 25th anniversary of Apple’s first notebook. The most notable feature is the Touch Bar, a dynamic touchscreen function and Touch ID bar at the top of the keyboard in place of function keys. The touch pad is much larger and the headphone jack gets a reprieve but standard USB ports get the boot in favor of 4 USB C compatible Thunderbolt 3 ports. Yet another charger to buy…

After a handful of demos we got to see a DJ make music become off beat using the new Touch Bar.

I’m out of time, but do have to address the elephant in the room, these are some costly pieces of hardware. With the base price of $2,400 for the 15″ model, these are not for casual users.

Apple MacBook Pro 2016 Ports
Apple MacBook Pro 2016 Ports

Thank you for visiting JaredBodine.com, the Tech You need to know. Now I’m off to sell some plasma to help pay for my pre-order. That’s going to cost a lot of blood….

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Amazon Echo Dot 2 Review and Unboxing…

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Amazon Echo Dot 2 Review and Unboxing

 

Thank you for viewing my Amazon Echo Dot 2 Review and Unboxing video. Today Amazon released the latest version (2nd Generation) of the Echo Dot. The Echo line of products are hardware that interact with Alexa, the digital voice assistant from Amazon similar to Siri. Alexa has a slight edge as she works with a wider ecosystem of products than Apple.

The new Dot is similar to the old one in many ways, but the top no longer has a rotating ring for volume control, instead opting for + and – buttons on the top, along with a microphone mute and trigger button (if you don’t want to use a trigger word to get her listening).

The Echo Dot heavily pushes the idea of connecting to external speakers via the 3.5mm headphone jack or via Bluetooth, but it does have its own internal speaker. It works fine for getting answers to questions and giving you feedback, but won’t satisfy any audiophiles for rich deep sound.

Aside from the sound quality, the Echo Dot can do anything the Echo can in a much smaller space and for much less money ($49.99 vs $179.99). Both feature the far-field microphone array for a superb ability to hear you around the house. I often will tell my Echo to turn on a ceiling fan or start my Xbox from other rooms in the house.

The new Dot comes in black and white. Seeing as how the white model still has a black top, it’s a mix-match design that does not look very great. I recommend the black. The black has a mate finish on the top and a glossy black on the sides, but thankfully, not a fingerprint magnet. The bottom has a rubber pad to prevent slippage.

Unless you need the extra volume and sound depth of the full size Echo or the portability of the battery powered Echo Tap, I would say the affordable Echo Dot is the right choice for you.

Have questions? Feel free to leave a comment below. Thank you for watching my Amazon Echo Dot 2 Review and Unboxing on JaredBodine.com, the Tech You Need To Know.

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6 Things You Need To Know About the Windows 10 Anniversary Update…

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6 Things You Need To Know About the Windows 10 Anniversary Update…

Microsoft is rolling out their Windows 10 Anniversary update now.

Windows 10 Anniversary Update

If you woke up to find that your Windows 10 PC had rebooted over night lately, there is a chance it automatically got the Windows 10 Anniversary update.

 

Have no fear, I promise you this is mostly a good thing. Here’s what you can expect from the new Windows 10 Anniversary update.

 

Windows 10 Anniversary Update - Hello
Windows 10 Anniversary Update – Hello
  1. Windows Hello. The most relevant change is the addition of Windows Hello. Rather than always typing in your password, you can use a fingerprint reader, webcam or other biometric device. There have been third party programs and accessories that could do this for some time, but now it is built right into Windows. The catch? It’s not compatible with enough devices yet. It works on my Surface Pro, but it won’t work with my PC using a Microsoft brand Life Cam, bummer.
  2. Windows Ink Workspace. If you have a touchscreen and stylus on your Windows 10 device, you’ll love Windows Ink Workspace. With a click (or tap) you get quick access to the improved Sticky Notes, sketch pad, OneNote and other sketch enabled apps. Simple hand written notes on webpages, documents or Sticky Notes has never been easier.
  3. Sticky Notes. Windows has had sticky notes in one form or another since Vista. But they get a short of steroids now. They work better with pen and touch devices and integrate with Cortana, the “Siri” of the Windows world. 

    Windows 10 Anniversary Update - Stylus Friendly
    Windows 10 Anniversary Update – More Stylus Friendly
  4. New Emoji Keyboard. This update gives you more options and even skin tone choices for emojis. It’s a nice addon, but not exactly a game changer.
  5. Dark Mode. If you’re on a plane or using your laptop on the bed and night and don’t want to keep your spouse awake, you can now use a Dark Mode theme that will carry on to the apps. This won’t work with all apps, but the list is sure to increase with time.
  6. Lock screen audio controls. We’ve become accustomed to pausing or skipping tracks without unlocking our phones. Now music controls are added to the lock screen of Windows 10. I can see this being more useful on mobile devices (like a Surface) over a desktop, but still a worthy addition. It is a feature so obvious that once you have it wonder why it wasn’t there before.
Windows 10 Anniversary Update - Features
Windows 10 Anniversary Update – Features

As with any change to your computer, it is possible to have issues as a result. On my computer, I had no sound. I had to uninstall and reinstall the sound card before all was well again. Not a major deal for me, but I can see how that would be a significant problem for many users. You may need to call tech support to get something like that fixed.

 

Speaking of tech support, did you know that there’s affordable in-home tech support on demand? I’m a member of HelloTech. HelloTech is like Uber for tech support. Contact HelloTech, explain your issue, and an available technician such as myself is dispatched to help you out. It’s fast, convenient and affordable. Why hire a geek when you can get a professional for less? Use my link to save $10 on your first service. hellotech.com/r/hellojared.  Who knows, if you live in my area, I might actually come to your door to help you out.

 

That’s all you need to know about the new Windows 10 Anniversary update in 2016. Thanks for visiting JaredBodine.com: The Tech You Need To Know.

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Apple 2016 Press Event – 45 Second Review

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45 Second Review of the Apple 2016 Press Event from September 7

Welcome to JaredBodine.com, the tech you need to know. We just had the Apple 2016 press event where Apple unveils their latest version of the iPhone as well as whatever else they’ve been working on lately. Rather than have you sit through the 2 hour Apple 2016 press event, I’ll tell you everything you need to know about it in a mere 45 seconds. Here we go…

Apple 2016 Press Event - iPhone 7
Apple 2016 Press Event – iPhone 7
  • After an opening sketch that reminded me of the MTV Music Awards, Tim Cook got thing rolling.
  • iWork is getting a “revolutionary” feature, real-time collaboration. They’ve almost caught up to Office 365 and Google Docs… Almost…

    Apple 2016 Press Event - WatchS2
    Apple 2016 Press Event – Watch Series 2
  • WatchOS 3 info was repeated before  the announcement of Series 2. It’s finally water proof, with GPS and should operate faster. It also enables Pokemon Go addicts.
  • After again regurgitating iOS 10 debuted in June, we learned the iPhone 7 will have a new processor, stabilized cameras (dual on the 7 Plus for zooming) and a pressure sensitive home button. And it’s finally IP67 waterproof.
  • Waterproofing means no more headphone jack, so the Lightning port is now used for wired headphones.

    Apple 2016 Press Event - AirPods
    Apple 2016 Press Event – AirPods
  • To make another accessory sale, Apple is releasing AirPods, stereo wireless earbuds – a potentially great product. Expect 5 hours of battery life.
  • The event was capped off with a Sia performance, again making this feel like an odd MTV Music Awards.

However, Unlike an MTV Music Awards, this event ended on time, albeit awkwardly….

Thank you for coming to JaredBodine.com to learn about the Apple 2016 press event.

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Aftershokz Trekz Titanium Review…

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Aftershokz Trekz Titanium Review…

CLAIM YOURS

I may have just found the best safe Bluetooth headphones ever. I mentioned on my blog that my wife can tell you I may have something of a headphone addiction. I’m constantly looking for that better fit, sound, functionality or… er, je ne sais quoi.

Trekz Titanium
Trekz Titanium the best safe headphones

I’ve had a few Bose ear buds of late, as well as Skull Candy, Beats, iLuv, Monster, Sol Republic, LG Tone, JayBird BlueBuds X, Plantronics Backbeat, and so the list goes.

What I like about these is that they are neither on/over ear nor in ear. They rest in front of your ear, and use bone induction to power the sound to your inner ear. This keeps your ears out of the equation all together.

Tell me about the features!

The first thing I look for is features that will work with my tech lifestyle. The Trekz Titanium have become my primary go-to headphones because they have the best combination of features I’ve ever found.

  1. Bluetooth with multipoint connectivity: This means it can be connected to a cell phone and tablet simultaneously, no more switching devices!
  2. Long 6+ hour battery life (quite longer in standby).
  3. Durable, water resistant.
  4. Great use for music or phone calls
  5. Player controls built in. (more…)
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Apple WWDC 2016 Review – 45 Second Reviews…

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Video: Apple WWDC 2016 Review – 45 Second Reviews…

 

Apple’s annual World Wide Developer’s Conference, otherwise known as the less interesting of their two yearly press events, was held today. Here’s what you need to know about it in just 45 seconds.

After stoking themselves with stats, things kicked off with watchOS.

Software tweaks speed up apps. Replying can be done scribbling one letter at a time (I don’t recommend long emails…)Also introduced was SOS, new faces, and, in case you easily forget, you can have you watch remind you to breathe…

Apple WWDC 2016 Review - Watch
Apple WWDC 2016 Review – Watch

tvOS is getting single sign on, allowing you to sign in once for all your apps and you can use your iPhone as a remote… finally.

Apple WWDC 2016 Review - HomeKit
Apple WWDC 2016 Review – HomeKit

The controversy over OSX vs OS 10 is over as the new name is macOS, Sierra being the first release. Of the new features, my favorite is Picture in Picture. And at long last, Siri is now on the desktop.

As macOS moves away from 10, iOS moves to it. iOS 10 adds little for existing users and even less to bring in new ones. The biggest news is that Siri is now open to third party developers, so she’s about to get a lot more useful.

The forced attempt at group fun was as awkward as I assume navigating this new music interface will be.

Lastly, Apple is playing catchup to home automation with homekit.

This has been your 45 second Apple WWDC 2016 review on JaredBodine.com – The tech you need to know. And now I have to go, my Apple Watch is telling me that it is time to breathe….

Apple WWDC 2016 Review
Apple WWDC 2016 Review

Apple WWDC 2016 Review - Maps
Apple WWDC 2016 Review – Maps
Apple WWDC 2016 Review - Photos
Apple WWDC 2016 Review – Photos

I couldn’t squeeze this all in, but Apple also showed off some fun new tweaks to Photos, Maps and Messaging. ApplePay can now be used for online purchases from Macs. Apple Watch is getting more friendly for those in a wheelchair. And to encourage kids to learn to code, a new app called Swift Playgrounds was announced.

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45 Second Review of Apple Press Event, March 2016…

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45 Second Review of Apple Press Event, March 2016

Text of the 45 Second Review of Apple Press Event, March 2016 is found below the video:

 

Welcome back to JaredBodine.com Today Apple held their semi-annual press conference and unveiled some new technology. Here’s your 45-second review of the special event.

Review of Apple Press Event - Intro
Review of Apple Press Event – Intro

After CEO Tim Cook reminded us of Apples upcoming 40th birthday and justification of their government security standoff, he turned the time over to Sleepy McGee to lullaby us with environmental stuff.

The “Z”s continued through some health app stuff before Cook took over and starting talking about the hardware.

The Apple Watch isn’t seeing any upgrades, just new bands and colors, and a lower cost make early adopters chagrin.

AppleTV is still is not quite Roku. And iOS tweaks were minor, but CarPlay sounds promising.

Review of Apple Press Event - iPhone SE
Review of Apple Press Event – iPhone SE

The best news is the iPhone SE, a return to the old iPhone 5 form with upgraded guts, like the processor camera and NFC Apple Pay. Base price is $399 without a contract, free with some plans. The downside is that the clearance iPhone 5 cases will go back to full price.

A smaller iPad market led to a smaller iPad Pro. They are gunning for PC users by somehow making fun of the longevity of PC hardware. The base price starts at $599 and goes up from there. The existing models of iPad remain unchanged.

Review of Apple Press Event - iPad Pro
Review of Apple Press Event – iPad Pro

As an aside, a fond farewell was given to the old campus as the new UFO is nearly finished construction. I wonder if they’ll be laughed at for keeping that “old hardware” for more than 5 years…

Thanks for joining us for a 45-second review of Apple’s April 2016 press event on JaredBodine.com – The tech you need to know.

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Top 3 iOS Mail Tricks…

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Top 3 iOS Mail Tricks…

 

I was helping a friend out recently who was frustrated with features she wished iOS Mail had… and it actually did. Here’s the top 3 iOS mail tricks that I shared with her, and now you.

  1. Swipe
  2. Flags and Folders
  3. Shake it to “undo”

Do you have more tricks to share? Would you have a different top 3 iOS mail tricks? Share in the comments section.