On Gear Live: Geared Up: Switching from iPhone to Note 10; iPhone 11 Pro is Coming…

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This week Apple announced a slew of new hardware products with the return of the iPad Air, an update to the iPad mini, new AirPods, and spec bumps for the iMac. In addition, Google revealed their vision for the future of gaming - it's cloud-based, and it's called Stadia.

Listen to the episode in the player below or subscribe to Geared Up in your favorite podcast app to listen on the go:

Listen to this episode of the Geared Up podcast for analysis of the latest from Apple and Google.


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Check out my Serena Shades by Lutron review - these are smart shades for smart homes that have been installed here in my home, and in this episode of Geared Up I bring you my thoughts. I use Serena Shades HomeKit integration for controlling them in my home, but there is also Serena Shades Alexa integration, along with Google Assistant, making them very versatile. Head to 16:15 in the video for the full rundown!

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Also, Apple is getting ready to launch new services - a video streaming service that will compete with Netflix, Amazon Video, HBO Now, and Hulu is one, and the other is a news subscription service that will give you access to a bunch of newspapers and magazines for one monthly fee. The Apple event takes place on March 25th, and we talk about what we expect to see and how it'll change the industry.

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In this episode of Geared Up, Andru Edwards and Starla Sampaco discuss the FaceTime bug that allowed iPhone users to eavesdrop on the person they called, reports of a new gaming subscription service from Apple, the minimalist phone trend, signs of new iPads and a seventh-generation iPod touch, and a foldable phone from Samsung. Plus, if you're doing some last-minute TV shopping ahead of Super Bowl Sunday, Andru has some recommendations for you.

Listen to the episode in the player below or subscribe to Geared Up in your favorite podcast app to listen on the go:


Latest Gear Live Videos

As part of CES 2019, I spent a lot of time with Panasonic (they were one of our sponsors this year,) checking out a bunch of their current and future tech innovations. We shot a video that teased the top 5 tech that we were going to be exploring in the booth, (don't miss the Harley Davidson electric motorcycle!) Here's the breakdown:

  1. Harley-Davidson LiveWire electric motorcycle
  2. Panasonic Projection Mapping and Real-Time Tracking
  3. Panasonic CIRRUS Intelligent Transportation Solution
  4. Human Characteristic Sensing and AI
  5. SPACe_C eMobility Concept 48v ePowertrain platform
  6. ELS Studio 3D Premium Audio System (bonus!)

Click to continue reading Panasonic Lumix S1, Harley-Davidson LiveWire and more from Panasonic’s CES 2019 booth!


This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #ManCaveMovieNight #CollectiveBias

Simply hover over the image above to click-through to purchase either movie!

If you're looking for a couple of great movies to put under the tree or into a stocking this holiday season, Sony Pictures is releasing two of its most recent blockbusters on Blu-ray and DVD just in time. You can pick up The Equalizer 2, which sees Denzel Washington reprise one of his signature roles (and acting in the first sequel he's ever done!) right now at Walmart, while Venom will be released on December 18th, one week before Christmas (but you can pre-order it at Walmart as well!)

I'm a big fan of movies that are centered around comic book characters, and when Sony sent over copies of each, I fired up Venom right away for a fun movie night with the fam. If you haven't heard, Venom is the story of journalist Eddie Brock and his attempt to bring down Carlton Drake. Drake is the mastermind behind the Life Foundation, which Brock discovers is using symbiotic lifeforms that require oxygen-breathing hosts to survive and thrive. Brock accidentally comes into contact with a symbiote, and thus begins his transformation into the superhuman title character, Venom, who tries to control Brock's new abilities.

Click to continue reading Venom and The Equalizer 2 dropping on Blu-ray and DVD in time for the holidays


Vizio E Series

The Vizio E-Series is a budget-priced television set, but don’t let the great price fool you. The E-Series has one of the displays in terms of image quality that you’ll find for the money, thanks in large part to the local dimming (which you typically have to pay a lot more money for.) Let’s dive into the features and design of the Vizio E-Series to see if it’s worth your attention.

Click to continue reading Vizio E-Series 2018 4K TV review


Air Hogs Supernova

There've been a lot of options for toy drones over the years, and you may think that they're all pretty much the same. At first glance, that's understandable since they typically lack the premium features you find on more prosumer level drones, like 4K cameras. That's why I appreciate what Spin Master is doing with the new Air Hogs Supernova. I've covered Spin Master products in the past, and usually come away impressed - this time is no different. Spin Master sent over the Air Hogs Supernova for me to test out, and it actually took away some of my uneasiness about using more expensive drones that I’ve acquired in the past.

The Supernova is Spin Master's first motion-controlled drone. Don't expect it to be as feature-rich as the DJI Mavic Air, but do expect to be able to pull off some pretty impressive tricks with hardware that's responsive and kid-friendly to boot.

Click to continue reading Spin Master’s Air Hogs Supernova: The flying orb with motion controls


Amazon Fire TV Cube review

Amazon is trying to get its Alexa voice assistant into as many homes as possible. Its latest offering: The Fire TV Cube, which essentially turns any TV into a smart TV with Alexa voice control. We try it out live on this episode. The integration with certain apps, like Netflix and Hulu, is pretty cool. Simply saying "Alexa, play Stranger Things," opened the Netflix app and started playing right where we left off. Using voice control to fast forward, switch TV inputs and open apps also works well. But for other apps that aren't integrated, like Sling TV, the experience isn't quite so smooth. The box also doesn't work with over-the-air cable TV, as some reports said it would. In other news, Oculus announced a new virtual reality TV app this week, and some people are unimpressed. We also dive into a report that points to a new line of AirPods coming before the end of the year, including higher-end over-the-ear headphones.

Listen to the episode in the player below or subscribe to Geared Up in your favorite podcast app to listen on the go:


E3, the biggest gaming convention in the U.S., started with a bang this week. Geared Up co-host Andru Edwards is down in Los Angeles for the show and on this episode, we run down the big game announcements of the year from Microsoft, Sony and Nintendo. Microsoft is pushing to make more Xbox-exclusive games by buying four popular game studios and founding another studio of its own; Sony's games didn't stand out as much as its bizarre press conference; and Nintendo's Super Smash Bros was the hit of the convention. Plus, an intriguing new study on something most people want nothing to do with: Airport WiFi.

Listen to the episode in the player below or subscribe to Geared Up in your favorite podcast app to listen on the go:


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.


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