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WWDC iOS 12

During today's WWDC 2018 keynote, Apple announced the next generation of its mobile software in iOS 12. Here are the biggest points of news for iOS 12:

PERFORMANCE

  • Apple is doubling down on performance with the aim of making devices faster and more devices
  • iOS 12 will be available on all the same devices that support iOS 11 - this includes devices that shipped back in 2013.
  • Apps launch twice as fast on devices running iOS 12 on even the oldest devices

AUGMENTED REALITY

  • A major update in iOS 12 is more AR support. Adobe took the stage to introduced simplified tools that will allow developers to create better AR experiences.
  • There's a new file format for AR, called USDZ, created in collaboration with Pixar.
  • A new app, Measure, will allow you to take measurements in real-time using an iOS device with AR. A demo was shown measuring a suitcase using just an iPhone X.
  • Support for shared experiences is announced - multiple users can see the same AR environment in real-time. This allows developers to create worlds that people can all see simultaneously.
  • LEGO took the stage to demo a shared AR LEGO app

PHOTOS

  • The Photos app gets new updates and features, starting with search. Search Suggestions will highlight things like key moments, places you've taken photos, business names, and events like concerts and sporting events. You can search for multiple terms, like surfing and vacation, to drill down into your library.
  • Effect suggestions give you reccomendations to edits you can make to your photos to make them even better.
  • Sharing suggestions will find people in your photos and allow you to share them with the folks who are in them. Shared photos are full resolution.
  • When you share, the receiver will also be given a suggestion to share photos from the same event with you.

SIRI

  • Siri Shortcuts allows you to pull in specific tasks from your apps. An example given was "I lost my keys" to have Siri activate your Tile hardware.
  • You can create your own Siri Shortcuts as well, so you can put together your own shortcut phrases.
  • A demo was shown using Siri Shortcuts - the user said "travel plans" and got their hotel reservation with an image, address, and check-in time from Siri
  • A "Heading Home" shortcut is able to set the home thermostat, play a podcast, send an ETA to a contact, and turn on a HomeKit fan. Very impressive stuff.

APPS

  • The News app gets an updated sidebar to make navigation easier
  • The Stocks app gets more granular vision to see stock performance. Apple News stories are now integrated into the Stocks app as well, giving you business news on the stocks that you follow.
  • The Stocks app now comes to iPad with iOS 12.
  • Voice Memos app also comes to iPad with iOS 12, with iCloud support built-in for syncing across devices.
  • iBooks becomes Apple Books with a redesigned app.
  • In iOS 12, CarPlay will support third-party navigation apps.

DIGITAL HEALTH

  • Do Not Disturb is updated to hide notifications at night, and in the morning hides notifications until you specify that you want to see them.
  • Do Not Disturb allows you to choose much more granular timeframes rather than just optimized for overnight.
  • Notifications can be turned on or off on a per-app basis right from the lock screen
  • Notifications can now be grouped by app, topic, or thread. With a swipe, you can dismiss an entire group of notifications.
  • A new feature called Screentime offers reports, giving a weekly summary that shows how you used your iOS device. This shows how much time you spend in each app, how often per hour you pick up your phone, and which apps are sending you the most notifications.
  • App Limits allows you to set a limited amount of time that you'd like to use specific apps per day. 
  • Kids get activity reports too, and parents get reports on their own devices of their kids usage. Parents can also create downtime periods and app limits. This is setup through the Family Sharing interfaces.

MESSAGES

  • Animoji now support tongue detection for sticking tongues out
  • New ghost, koala, tiger, and T-Rex Animoji characters
  • Apple announces Memoji, allowing you to create your own customized 3D emoji character that looks like you
  • Memoji has a slick creator app to design your character
  • The Messages camera now includes effects, filters, stickers, and even Animoji and Memoji right in the camera

FACETIME

  • Apple announces Group FaceTime, which allows you to chat with up to 32 simultaneous participants
  • You can use both audio or video
  • FaceTime is integrated into Messages, allowing you to quickly do a Group FaceTime right from a group chat
  • A demo is shown, and as people speak, they become bigger on screen, or you can choose who to bring front and center
  • The same effects mentioned above in Messages also applies to the FaceTime camera

Improved performance, new AR experiences, digital health, improved Messages, Group FaceTime, and more. That's iOS 12.

Gallery: WWDC 2018: Apple announces iOS 12


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The Geared Up Giveaway is back! We're giving Geared Up subscribers the chance to win an Oculus Go headset. See the bottom of this post for details on how to enter the giveaway.

High-end camera maker Red unveiled a mysterious new smartphone this week, and Geared Up co-host Andru Edwards was there for the hands-on experience. He said the new phone has some cool and exciting features, but also some strange ones.

Plus, Microsoft is once again trying to take on Apple's dominance in the tablet market. But can a new line of Surface devices make a real change?

We also dive into the hype around the Tesla Model 3, which is now rolling out to customers. Andru ordered his Model 3 more than two years ago and is picking it up in just a few days.

Listen to the episode in the player below or subscribe to the show in your favorite podcast app.

Subscribe to the Geared Up podcast:

Win an Oculus Go VR Headset from Geared Up!

Gallery: Mysterious new Hydrogen One smartphone from Red and getting hyped for Tesla Model 3 - Geared Up!


How should gadget fans think about privacy? Geared Up cohost Andru Edwards, for one, says growing concerns about data privacy will be a boon for Apple and other companies that don’t base their businesses on advertising revenue.

But doesn’t that mean you’re locked in to Apple’s ecosystem? “Yes – locked into greatness,” he says.

Click to continue reading The great privacy debate — and how companies like Apple could benefit - Geared Up!

Gallery: The great privacy debate — and how companies like Apple could benefit - Geared Up!


The Mega Smartphone Giveaway!

Welcome to our MEGA Smartphone Giveaway! We are giving away three of the best smartphones of 2017 to celebrate the end of the year, and this is your opportunity to walk away with an iPhone X, Samsung Galaxy Note 8, and Google Pixel 2! Here is how it will work:

  • The first place winner gets to choose their pick from the 3 smartphones - iPhone X, Note 8, and Pixel 2
  • The second place winner gets to choose between the 2 that are left
  • The third place winner gets the remaining smartphone (The winner that chooses the iPhone may substitute an iPhone 8 or iPhone 8 Plus instead of the iPhone X if they prefer)

Big shout out to Erica Griffin and David Cogen (The Unlockr) for teaming up with me on this giveaway! Good luck to all! Which phone would you pick if you won? Do the Pixel 2 cameras call your name? Are you all about Face ID with the iPhone X? The stylus of the Galaxy Note 8? Let me know!

Gallery: Mega Smartphone Giveaway: Win an iPhone X, Pixel 2, or Galaxy Note 8!


ZTE Tempo X Giveaway!

ZTE just launched the new Tempo X smartphone on Boost Mobile, and we've got one to give away to a lucky winner! If you're unaware, the ZTE Tempo X sports some great features without breaking the bank - in fact, it sells for just $59.99 currently! The Tempo X boasts a 1.1GHz quad-core processor alongside Android Nougat, a 5-inch FXVGA display, and even a microSD card slot that supports expansion up to 32GB. The phone will even work if you head to Mexico, with built-in roaming capabilities. You also get a 5 megapixel rear camera and 2 megapixel front camera, and the Tempo X can even act as a mobile hotspot. Not bad at all for a budget device!

Use the widget above to enter the giveaway and manage your entries - good luck!

Gallery: ZTE Tempo X Smartphone Giveaway!


Here in the middle of 2017, managing your content across your various devices is a problem that is pretty much solved, thanks to the various cloud services we can tap into. These basically allow you to access all of your most important content from any device, anywhere you are. However, a problem that has yet to be tackled is the management of who uses those devices. Circle with Disney is a brand-new product that wants to unify your family’s entire online experience. It allows you to set time limits for individual family members, block websites based on your child’s age, and even pause Internet access entirely when it’s time to log off.

Circle allows your family to manage all of your home's connected devices with ease. With Circle, parents can now filter content and limit screen time as well as set a bedtime for every device in the home. Circle can even pause the Internet and share what kids are up to online.

Click to continue reading Circle with Disney review: Easy management of family devices!

Gallery: Circle with Disney review: Easy management of family devices!


Google Pixel vs Nexus 6P

The Pixel and the Nexus are like brothers from another mother. On the one hand, you've got Google's best from last year and on the other, Google's best from this year. But how does the Nexus 6P stack up against the Pixel, one year later? Let's find out.

If you look at design, they're pretty far apart. The 6P's metal build with a visor up top is definitely premium but so is the Pixel's metal and glass combination. Their size comes down to personal preference but you can pick up the Pixel over the Pixel XL if size matters to you.

Click to continue reading Google Pixel vs. Nexus 6P: Which is the Better Android Smartphone?

Gallery: Google Pixel vs. Nexus 6P: Which is the Better Android Smartphone?


iPhone lock screen

With the holiday season in full swing, it’s easy to forget about the importance of privacy and security in this world of endless digital devices. More and more of our electronics are constantly connected to the Internet through cloud services, providing more and more entry points into our homes for those with nefarious intentions. McAfee reached out to me with some tips on staying secure when using different devices, and they’re good enough to be shared, as they just might help you avoid a privacy-related disaster. Additionally, McAfee is running a sweepstakes where the grand prize winner will receive a trip for two to Iceland. More details on that at the end of this article.

Click to continue reading Keeping your devices and info secure this holiday season (and win a trip!)

Gallery: Keeping your devices and info secure this holiday season (and win a trip!)


If you're looking for the best Black Friday 2016 deals for tech and gaming, I looked all over to find the best tech deals for Black Friday 2016 and I bring them to you in this video! I narrowed it down to great tech products like 4K TVs, Google Home, Xbox One bundles, and more - and then I also break it down by stores, including Target, Amazon, eBay, Best Buy, and Walmart. Any deals that are available online are linked below!

B&H PHOTO

AMAZON

BEST BUY

TARGET

EBAY

NEWMATTER

Gallery: The Best Tech Black Friday Deals for 2016!


We are giving away two of the hottest smartphones on the planet right now - the iPhone 7 Plus and the Google Pixel XL! Each winner will get to choose whether they would like a 128GB iPhone 7 Plus, or a 128GB Google Pixel XL, and each winner will also get to choose the color that they'd like to receive. Be sure to subscribe to my YouTube channel to stay up on all the latest tech reviews and gadget giveaways!

Big shout out to Candid for sponsorsing this giveaway - be sure to check out the video I did on Candid and their anonymous social networking app down below.

Enter to win using the Gleam widget below, and good luck to all who enter!

iPhone 7 Plus / Google Pixel Giveaway!

Gallery: iPhone 7 Plus & Google Pixel XL Giveaway!


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