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Linkin Park’s Chester Bennington Filmed Carpool Karaoke Episode For Apple Music Just Days Before His Death

Linkin Park singer Chester Bennington was filmed in an episode of Apple’s upcoming show Carpool Karaoke: The Series just days before his death.

Earlier this month, the band tweeted an on-set photo with Bennington pictured alongside Linkin Park band members Joe Hahn and Mike Shinoda, and Ken Jeong, best known for his role as Ben Chang on the NBC sitcom Community.

Carpool Karaoke: The Series, based on the popular segment from The Late Late Show with James Corden, is set to debut August 8 on Apple Music. Apple did not immediately respond when asked if Linkin Park’s episode will still be released.

Bennington committed suicide last Thursday, resulting in an outpouring of grief from his family, friends, and fans around the world. Linkin Park has set up a website in his memory and tweeted a message about him earlier today.

“Our hearts are broken,” the band said. “You touched so many lives, maybe even more than you realized. In the past few days, we’ve seen an outpouring of love and support, both public and private, from around the world.”

“I am in shock and heartbroken,” tweeted Jeong. “All my thoughts and prayers go out to Chester and his family and friends at this time.”

Tags: Apple Music, Carpool Karaoke
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Spotify and Warner Music Close to Signing Deal That Would Restrict Some Releases to Premium Users

Music streaming service Spotify is close to signing a deal with Warner Music Group that would see artists under the label launch albums exclusively on Spotify’s $9.99/month paid subscription tier. Spotify has previously not restricted albums to its paid subscribers, but reports earlier this year said that the service would soon begin practicing in exclusives, and it now appears to be happening with Warner Music artists as the first potential exclusives for Spotify Premium users that would be unavailable to anyone on the free tier.

Spotify and Warner Music’s new deal “could be signed by September,” according to sources speaking with Reuters. The sources said that some of the biggest parts of the deal have been talked about, including granting Spotify “a more favorable revenue split” in return for Spotify launching Warner Music albums exclusively on its paid tier “for a defined period.” However, specific monetary amounts for such a deal, and which of Warner Music’s artists would be included — Ed Sheeran and Muse are under the label’s management — were details that have yet to be ironed out.

One source described the talks as being at “a crossroads,” with any potential for a final deal remaining “at bay” until agreements were made on a number of points. Still, talks are said to be “taking place daily,” leading other sources close to the deal hopeful for a finalized agreement to come by September. The signing of the deal is said to be Spotify’s “last big music royalty deal” ahead of the company’s plan to go public on the stock market by late 2017/early 2018.

The parties are positive a deal could be signed by September as major issues such as granting loss-making Spotify a more favorable revenue split in return for making some new albums accessible only to its paying subscribers for a defined period have already been agreed, the sources said.

However, the precise revenue split and the size of a potential guaranteed upfront payment to the label, home to artists including Ed Sheeran and Muse, have yet to be agreed, said two of the sources.

In terms of the revenue split, Spotify is said to be seeking an even 50-50 split with royalties of albums streamed on the service, but Warner Music is hoping to keep at least 52 percent of its albums’ royalties on Spotify. Any deal is expected to see a percent of Warner Music’s royalties decreased, as the company currently has a 55 percent majority on Spotify royalties. Artist royalties have been the center of negative press for Spotify in the past, leading to the company’s acquisition of blockchain technology company Mediachain Labs.

In June, Spotify announced that it has over 140 million global monthly active users, 53 million of which are paid subscribers. According to MIDiA Research detailed in today’s Reuters report, that represents about 40 percent of streaming music subscribers worldwide. In comparison, Apple Music is said to have 19 percent of global streaming music subscribers (about 28 million), while Amazon Prime Music accounts for 12 percent (about 16 million subscribers).

For Apple Music, the streaming music service has been repeatedly criticized for its reliance on album exclusives since its launch in the summer of 2015. Last year, Eddy Cue said that exclusives on Apple Music will continue to appear “where appropriate.”

Speaking with Reuters last month, Spotify vice president Jonathan Forster said that Apple’s rise in the music streaming market has helped Spotify: “It’s great that Apple is in the game,” Forster said. “They are definitely raising the profile of streaming. It is hard to build an industry on your own.”

Tag: Spotify
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Apple Seeds Fourth Beta of iOS 11 to Developers

Apple today seeded the fourth beta of iOS 11 to developers for testing purposes, two weeks after releasing the third beta and more than a month after introducing the new update at the Worldwide Developers Conference.

Registered developers can download the new iOS 11 beta from Apple’s Developer Center or over-the-air once the proper configuration profile has been installed.

According to Apple’s release notes, today’s beta fixes some errors with VSCO, Pinterest, Citi Mobile, and Apple’s personal assistant Siri, but introduces new known issues. Tapping the AirPlay button in videos that aren’t full screen can cause some apps to crash, and FaceTime Live Photos is disabled by default and must be re-enabled.

The call history list in the Recents tab does not update immediately in the beta, resulting in the second number in the list being dialed when the first is selected, and Cellular data for music downloads is included in WiFi Services instead of iTunes Accounts.

iOS 11 introduces some significant design changes, including a customizable Control Center and a new Lock screen that’s merged with the Notification Center. Peer-to-peer Apple Pay payments are being introduced in the Messages app, which is also gaining a new App Drawer, and there’s a new Do Not Disturb feature that is designed to help drivers stay focused on the road. Siri, Photos, the Camera app, and more are also gaining new features and refinements.

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ARKit for developers will result in a wide range of new augmented reality apps on iOS devices, while a Core ML SDK will allow apps to become a whole lot smarter. iOS 11 is also the biggest update ever for the iPad, with a new Dock that introduces much improved multitasking, a Files app for better managing files, improved Apple Pencil support, a revamped App Switcher, and a system-wide drag and drop feature.

iOS 11 available for both registered developers and public beta testers and will see two more months of testing ahead of a prospective September release date alongside new iPhones.

For full details on all of the new features included in iOS 11, make sure to check out our extensive iOS 11 roundup.

Related Roundup: iOS 11
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Apple Provides Fourth Beta of tvOS 11 to Developers

Apple today seeded the fourth beta of an upcoming tvOS 11 update designed for the fourth-generation TV, two weeks after seeding the third beta and more than a month after releasing the first beta during the 2017 Worldwide Developers Conference.

Registered developers can download tvOS 11 by connecting the Apple TV to a computer with a USB-C cable and installing the beta software using iTunes.

tvOS 11 didn’t receive much attention at the Worldwide Developers Conference due to time constraints, but according to Apple’s release notes, it introduces a few new features to the operating system.

tvOS 11 includes automatic switching between light/dark mode based on local time, Home screen syncing options that keep multiple Apple TVs in a household in sync, new background modes and notification support, Focus API improvements, custom sound support, network-based pairing and development support, improvements to Mobile Device Management, and more.

The fourth beta of tvOS 11 likely focuses primarily on bug fixes and other small refinements, as the first three betas did. Apple’s new tvOS 11 update is available for both registered developers and public beta testers. It will see a public release later this year.

Related Roundups: Apple TV, tvOS 10
Buyer’s Guide: Apple TV (Don’t Buy)
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Dude, where’s my car? Check out the best Android Auto apps

You can find Android apps for absolutely everything these days, so why not for driving? The field of car-related apps is really revving up, and there are plenty of great Android apps for those who need to focus on the drive ahead. Here’s where the rubber meets the road — these are the best Android Auto apps that complement the driving experience and will help you get the most enjoyment out of your next road trip. If you’re feeling a little left out because you’re an Android user with a car that doesn’t support Android Auto, don’t be, because Pioneer has just the thing to get you started.

Android Auto

Google’s in-car system comes preinstalled in some cars now, but you can also use it by connecting your phone to a compatible car display, or just by using your phone in a dock on its own. With a simplified interface and hands-free voice commands, Android Auto enables you to use your phone safely while driving. The list of apps that work with Android Auto is small, but includes Spotify, Telegram, Skype, TuneIn Radio, and Audible, and it’s steadily growing. You can comfortably use it to navigate, listen to music, or send messages all with voice commands. It runs on any phone with Android 5.0 or later. And before you ask, yes, it holds its own against Apple’s CarPlay pretty well.

Download now from:

Google Play


You can get all sorts of useful real-time information about the road ahead from the active community on Waze. The app also offers turn-by-turn directions, reroutes you based on traffic, and alerts you about accidents, hazards, and police locations. You can also use it to share your ETA and progress with friends and family, which is ideal when you’re meeting up somewhere. Throw in info on points of interest, the best gas prices nearby, and Facebook integration, and you have one of the most comprehensive driving apps around. The Android Auto version is currently in beta, and will hopefully make the app easier than ever to use during a drive.

Download now from:

Google Play


Textra is a nice alternative to the standard Android messaging app, one that makes it easier for you to send texts and other quick messages to friends and family. With Textra, you can send GIFs, schedule future messages, and swipe across your screen to initiate phone calls. The app has improved notifications and a quick reply feature, too, meaning you can always stay up to date on what’s being said, and respond without having to take your eyes off the road for an extended period of time.

Download now from:

Google Play


Here we have a popular messaging app that, like Textra, gives drivers a hands-free way of receiving and sending messages. When used in conjunction with Android Auto, users can simply tap on the message as it appears on their car’s display, then use their voice to create and send replies. If you’re using GPS or another app at the time, messages will appear in the top third of your display, so you can craft your response without switching app screens and potentially missing your turn.

Download now from:

Google Play

Google Play Music

Google Play Music’s integration with Android Auto gives you an easier way to listen to and control your music while driving. Use voice commands “OK Google” and “Play…” to start a playlist, play a specific song, or listen to a specific genre of music. You can also use your car’s display to navigate the app, where you’ll be able to see music recommendations, recently-played content, or mixes made using songs and artists you’ve previously listened to. Of course, in either case, you need to have Google Play Music properly set up and already be signed in. Users were having issues with the music app a while back, but recent updates appear to have fixed the problem.

Download now from:

Google Play

Pocket Casts ($4)

Listening to music in the car is one thing, but podcasts can make a drive so much more bearable. Pocket Casts is one of the best podcasts apps on the entire Android platform, and it’s now fully compatible with Android Auto. When paired with the Android Auto UI, you’ll get the usual play/pause and back/forward controls, and you can browse podcasts, set filters, and capitalize on previously-made “Up Next” queues. The latter playlists need to be made before you launch Android Auto, however, so you may still need to fiddle with your phone before hitting the road.

Download now from:

Google Play

Voice Infos

Voice Infos eliminates the need to switch between different apps in order to see all of your information, whether it be your emails, news stories, calendar events, weather forecasts, or tweets. This is especially useful for drivers that don’t want to miss a thing, or simply like to have their news read to them during their morning commute. Simple voice commands such as “News,” “Play,” “Calendar,” and “Stop” make Voice Infos easy to use with Android Auto, and almost invaluable if you have a lot of information you want to sort through or stay current on.

Download now from:

Google Play


Many of the apps that currently work with Android Auto are related to audio, music, and messaging, so it’s unsurprising to learn that Google Hangouts works seamlessly with the platform. Like Textra and WhatsApp, Hangouts can be used to send and respond to messages using your voice, which can be done by either saying “OK Google” or pressing the microphone button. Android Auto repeats the recorded message before you decide to send it, in the event the microphone misheard you or you have something to add. Since Hangouts is also available for iOS and the web, anything you do on those platforms will carry over to the Android Auto iteration of the app, so you can continue your text conversations without issue. However, keep in mind that it will be slower than if you were using a keyboard.

Download now from:

Google Play


Music and podcasts are two things you can listen to while driving, but let’s not forget books, which can also help you pass the time. Audible delivers on that, thanks to its robust compatibility with Android Auto. Along with the ability to play audiobooks, you’ll also able to adjust playback speed — between 0.5x and 3x — and skip between chapters. Best of all, you can navigate the Audible store and view your wish list, the best sellers list, and an assortment of genre-specific categories, so you can add new books even when you can’t access your phone or computer.

Download now from:

Google Play


Skype is yet another way Android Auto users can carry out text conversations from behind the wheel. The app is well-known for its video capabilities, though that particular feature hasn’t made its way to cars just yet. Text messages are still much appreciated, however, especially if you’re already a heavy Skype user with a decent amount of contacts. Those who’ve used Hangouts or Textra will notice a few similarities in regards to how the app handles messages, specifically with how they appear on your car’s display. It’s simple and straightforward, and we can’t wait for it to support both video and voice calls.

Download now from:

Google Play

Amazon Music

Amazon Music works in a similar fashion to Google Play Music, but it’s probably preferable for Amazon Prime subscribers. Any music tied to your Amazon account — be it in the cloud, music you’ve uploaded to the service, or songs found on your phone — will all be available when you decide to use Amazon Music with Android Auto, alongside features like Prime Stations. Voice commands are also available for hands-free use, meaning you can say “OK Google” followed by a phrase like “Play Call Me Maybe on Amazon Music.”

Download now from:

Google Play

Update: Added Textra, WhatsApp, Google Play Music, Pocket Casts, Voice Infos, Hangouts, Audible, Skype, and Amazon Music.


Windows 10’s Fall Creators Update could be last that supports Microsoft Paint

Why it matters to you

Microsoft’s Windows Paint tool now has a shaky future, so following the Fall Creators Update, get your time in with it, as its days may be numbered.

Microsoft’s upcoming Fall Creators Update for Windows 10 will signal the end of life for a number of traditional tools, including Outlook Express, Reader App, and Reading List. Beyond that reasonably small selection though, Microsoft will also reduce support for a number of other features, including Microsoft Paint, leaving the door open to shuttering them for good in the future.

The Windows 10 Fall Creators Update is designed to further bring together Microsoft’s various platforms under one roof, and add improved support for augmented and mixed reality applications. However, Microsoft is also taking the opportunity to trim some of its legacy fat, by bringing together certain features in new software and ending the life of those that are no longer needed.

In the case of the Reader app and Reading List, their functionality will be bundled into Microsoft Edge. Outlook Express is being killed off entirely, as part of what Microsoft calls a removal of “non-functional legacy code.”

Other features getting the ax include screen-saver functionality in Windows themes, though they can still be adjusted in the control panel. Syskey.exe is being removed to improve security and Microsoft is also ditching the 3D Builder app as a default installation. It recommends instead that users try Print 3D or Paint 3D.

Microsoft Paint itself isn’t being killed off just yet, but it is listed as deprecated in Microsoft’s Fall Creators Update breakdown. That means Microsoft sees it as a potential feature to remove in the future, so may not be with us for long. It is also not undergoing active development, so if there were any features you were hoping would be added in the future, that’s not going to happen.

It’s joined by the “Sync Your Settings” cloud system and System Image Backup Solution, with Microsoft instead recommending that users use a full-disk backup service. Powershell 2.0 is set to be deprecated, too — Microsoft suggests users migrate to PowerShell 5.0+ instead.

Although this may seem like a list of harsh culls from the software giant, ultimately Microsoft is looking to bundle more services into the core Windows 10 experience. It’s using the current process to encourage more people to upgrade to the contemporary operating system, which already has hundreds of millions of users, but Microsoft wants that number to grow far higher in the years to come.


Best iOS app deals of the day! 6 paid iPhone apps for free for a limited time

Everyone likes apps, but sometimes the best ones are a bit expensive. Now and then, developers put paid apps on sale for free for a limited time, but you have to snatch them up while you have the chance. Here are the latest and greatest iOS app deals available from the iOS App Store.

These apps normally cost money and this sale lasts for a limited time only. If you go to the App Store and it says the app costs money, that means the deal has expired and you will be charged. 


Accidentally deleted all your favorite photos from your camera roll? As long as they’re in Instagram, this app can help you recover those precious memories.

Available on:


5-Minute Clinical Consult

A best seller for over 25 years, this mobile app version of the best-selling book delivers fast up-to-date guidance on over 900 medical conditions on your mobile device.

Available on:



With Discographic you can catalog your entire record collection. Easily add items simply by scanning their barcodes, search the enormous Discogs database, and much more.

Available on:



These powerful and beautifully designed tools will help you add beautiful frames, filters, text, and so much more to your photos, in the most creative and playful way.

Available on:



Alti is a beautiful, feature-rich, minimalist altimeter and compass application for your iPhone. It sports a clean design, includes a wide selection of background colors, and provides a distraction-free experience.

Available on:



Add fonts to your photos with Fontz. With several text fonts to choose from and a wide spectrum of colors, you can add captions to any of your pictures with this app.

Available on:



Galaxy Note 8 may get a ‘Deep Blue’ color option, Bixby-powered earphones

Samsung is mulling a ‘Deep Blue’ Galaxy Note 8.

With the launch of the Galaxy Note 8 just under a month away, the rumors are flying in thick and fast. The phone is likely to sport dual rear cameras along with a 6.3-inch Infinity Display, and a tweet from WinFutures Roland Quandt suggests Samsung will introduce a new “Deep Blue” color option.

Samsung Galaxy Note8 coming in Black, Orchid Grey and a new Deep Blue. At least.

— Roland Quandt (@rquandt) July 22, 2017

There’s no render to give us a look at the new color option, but we should know more in the coming weeks. Alongside the Deep Blue variant, the Galaxy Note 8 is expected to come in Midnight Black and Orchid Grey hues.

Another rumor from South Korea’s ET News claims that Samsung is looking to develop Bluetooth earphones powered by Bixby. The earphones are set to launch alongside the Note 8, but the publication notes that Samsung hasn’t figured out whether to bundle them in the box or sell them as a separate accessory.

The Bixby-powered earphones are rumored to offer “noise blocking” technology that eliminates background noise, and they’re said to be compatible with voice commands. Samsung faced several setbacks in getting its voice-based assistant off the ground, with Bixby Voice rolling out to Galaxy S8 units in the U.S. a full three months after the phone made its debut. Samsung is counting on AI as a long-term play, but as it stands, Bixby is a non-starter.

With the Note 8 set for an unveil on August 23, we should have more details shortly.

Samsung Galaxy Note 8

  • Galaxy Note 8: Everything we know so far
  • All Galaxy Note 8 news
  • Should you buy the Galaxy S8+ or wait for the Note 8?
  • The buttonless future of Samsung phones
  • Join our Galaxy Note 8 forums


Grab two Amazon Echo for $20 less than the normal price of one

Our friends at Thrifter are back again, this time with another Echo deal you won’t want to miss!

Amazon has run a number of great deals on the Echo lately, and here we have another one. You can pick up a pair of Amazon Echo for just $159.98 at Amazon today with the coupon code ECHO2PACK, or you can grab one of them for $129.99. Normally, you’d be paying $179.99 for just one Echo, which means that you are saving $50 if you opt to go for just one, or a savings of $200 on the regular price of buying two Echos.

Obviously, the real deal here is on the two-pack, so whether you need two of them or not, it’s the one you should buy. Whether you sell one to a friend for a few bucks or give it away for a present, the second Echo for $30 is a no-brainer. Both the black and white versions of the speaker are available at the discount, and you can mix and match them as well.


As of right now, the black Echo is set to ship on August 11 and the white version will be available on August 13. Waiting a few weeks is well worth the additional savings you are getting here.

See at Amazon

More articles from Thrifter:

  • Here are some of the best AmazonBasics products to buy
  • Must-have grilling and BBQ accessories for summer 2017

For more great deals be sure to check out our friends at Thrifter now!


The best alternatives to T-Mobile


If you like T-Mobile’s coverage, check out these alternatives that use T-Mobile’s coverage.

]T-Mobile](/t-mobile), like the rest of the Big Four U.S. carriers, is keen on selling access to MVNOs (Mobile Virtual Network Operators). This is great: it benefits T-Mobile (income without any investment), the MVNO (no need to build its own network), and us (more choices at different prices).

And a lot of MVNOs use T-Mobile’s network, either exclusively or in combination with other carriers. They cover just about every price point, offer options with large buckets of data, and can duplicate most of the experience of having a “proper” T-Mobile account. You can find a full list of them below, but we’re going to focus on a few options users like you have called the best and that we agree belong on this list.

More: Complete list of T-Mobile MVNOs



MetroPCS isn’t technically a T-Mobile MVNO. T-Mobile owns it, but MetroPCS operates independently and has different policies, pricing, and features.

The carrier offers plans with calling, texting, and data packages for people who use both a lot and a little bit of each. Plans start at $30 per month, which includes all taxes and extra fees.

MetroPCS also uses what it calls “Data Maximizer” to deliver streaming video at a resolution it claims is ideal for smartphone screens. It also offers the same Music Unlimited packages that T-Mobile offers, where streaming music from select services will not count against your data tally.

If you look at what people have to say about MetroPCS on the web, you’ll see positives like great pricing and customer service, and negatives like poor coverage or network issues. We say that MetroPCS has always provided exactly what was expected and we have had no issues to note with coverage or customer service.

Learn more at MetroPCS

Walmart Family Mobile

Walmart Family Mobile has leveraged T-Mobile’s network with a storefront presence unmatched by any other MVNO. We’ve all seen the signs for phones and plans when at Walmart and some of its offerings are great.

We love the $24.88 plan that offers unlimited talk and text combined with 1GB of LTE data (your connection drops to 2G speeds once the data limit is reached). It’s perfect for people who don’t use a lot of data while away from Wi-Fi but still need a bit for things like navigation or making reservations. It’s also the best plan for anyone who needs a second line but will rarely use it.

The other end of the spectrum has unlimited talk and text bundled with 15GB of LTE data for $49.88. 15GB per month is approaching power-user territory, and if you don’t use more than 15GB each month, why pay more for an unlimited plan?

User experiences seem to vary with Walmart Family Mobile, just as they do with every service. The pros look to be the price of both the phones and the service (you can also bring your own compatible phone) and cons include poorly trained sales and support staff and the ubiquitous coverage complaints.

We’ve found Walmart Family Mobile to deliver the service as promised and have had no issues getting a service plan via the web or in-store.

Learn more at Walmart


Mint SIM

Mint SIM is an MVNO much like the others, with a special twist on how you can buy service.

While you can buy a package of talk, text, and data for a month, you can also buy extended service for as long as one year for significant savings. It offers the small (2GB), medium (5GB), and large (10GB) plans for one month, three months, six months, or one year.

$35 gets you a single month plan with unlimited talk and text as well as 2GB of LTE data (which drops in speed once your limit is reached), or $399 gets you a full year’s worth of service including 10GB of LTE data. (]There are also a bunch of promo codes avaiable]( for new users right now.)

If you know how much service you’ll need buying in bulk can be a considerable savings. Mint SIM uses aggressive pricing to provide long-term value, as well as cheap packages for monthly users.

More: The AC Community Mint SIM review

More at Mint SIM


Ting is another MVNO that offers more than just a choice between monthly plans. It lets you mix and match to find a plan with the right amount of talk, text, and data for you without paying for things you won’t need. Best of all, Ting doesn’t bill you for service you didn’t use.

At the end of the month, you’re billed for the amount of service you actually used, not what the plan said when you bought it. This can be a great way to save money while still keeping an option to use more data when you need it.

Experiences across the web tend to love the pricing structure and ability to build a plan tailored for data users who don’t make many calls. Negatives complain of poor customer service and coverage or data speed issues.

We think Ting can be a great provider if you know what you need versus what you don’t, and love the billing for just what you used instead of the label on the plan.

More at Ting

There are plenty of T-Mobile MVNOs that aren’t on our best list but still might work great for you. We can’t use them all at once and things change quickly when it comes to carrier resellers. If you have a great experience and think we should give any company a second look, sound off in the comments below!

Alternative carriers (MVNOS)


  • What is an alternative mobile carrier?
  • What are the advantages of going with an alternative carrier?
  • How to make sure your phone works on a prepaid alternative carrier
  • 8 Important Considerations When Switching To An MVNO
  • These are the cheapest data plans you can buy in the U.S.
  • Mint SIM vs. Cricket Wireless: Which is better for you?


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