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22
Aug

Verizon Introduces New Unlimited Data Plans, Limits Video to 720p For All Smartphone Customers


Verizon today split its unlimited talk, text, and data plan into three tiers: Go Unlimited, Beyond Unlimited, and Business Unlimited. The plans go into effect for new customers starting Wednesday, August 23.

Go Unlimited starts at $75 per month, which is $5 cheaper than the original Verizon Unlimited plan introduced in February. However, while Verizon Unlimited allowed for full HD video streaming, video quality on Go Unlimited is forcibly throttled to 480p, which Verizon and many other carriers refer to as DVD quality.

Go Unlimited customers can also experience reduced speeds if the network is congested at any time, rather than only after exceeding 22GB of data usage in a billing cycle. And while Mobile Hotspot is unlimited, tethering speeds are capped at a maximum of 600kbps from the very first kilobyte of usage.

The original Verizon Unlimited plan allows tethering at 4G LTE speeds for the first 10GB of data, with speeds reduced to 3G afterwards.

Beyond Unlimited starts at $85 per month, which is $5 more expensive than Verizon Unlimited. The plan includes unlimited tethering with the first 15GB of data at 4G LTE speeds, up from 10GB, but video quality is forcibly throttled to 720p quality on smartphones and 1080p quality on tablets.

Beyond Unlimited customers could experience reduced speeds at times of network congestion once they exceed 22GB in a billing cycle, in line with the original unlimited plan. Verizon increases that limit to 25GB for customers who sign a two-year contract when purchasing a new device.

Business Unlimited is designed for four or more lines and starts at $45/month/line. Each line could experience reduced speeds at times of network congestion after exceeding 22GB in a billing cycle, and video quality is throttled to 480p. Unlimited tethering is included with 4G LTE speeds for the first 10GB of data.

AutoPay and paperless billing must be enabled for all of the prices listed above, or else each plan costs $5 extra per month.

Verizon told The Verge that existing customers will be able to keep their current plan — including legacy ones. As a bonus, for existing customers on the original Verizon Unlimited plan introduced in February, Verizon is increasing the allowance for 4G LTE speeds while tethering from 10GB to 15GB at no charge.

However, the biggest kicker is that Verizon says, moving forward, HD video on all legacy plans will match Beyond Unlimited’s HD quality. In other words, even grandfathered customers will soon be limited to video quality of 720p on smartphones and 1080p on tablets, which is sure to elicit some frustration.

“We’re doing this to ensure all customers have a great experience on our network since there is no visible difference in quality on a smartphone or tablet when video is shown at higher resolutions,” a Verizon spokesperson said.

As for the increased prices, Verizon says its unlimited data plan from February was an “introductory” price that was bound to increase eventually.

Tag: Verizon
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22
Aug

Details on HomePod’s Setup Process Surface in Newest iOS 11 Developer Beta


Almost one month after the HomePod’s firmware first began revealing tidbits about Apple’s upcoming smart speaker, the iPhone 8, and even the Apple Watch Series 3, today iHelp BR has a few more pieces of information on the setup process for the HomePod. Interestingly, the site noted that the data doesn’t come from HomePod firmware, but was discovered within the seventh iOS 11 beta, seeded to developers yesterday.

The new details suggest in broad strokes what users can expect when they first open their HomePod and sync it with an iPhone. Although HomePod lacks a W1 chip, the speaker will connect and pair with iOS devices in some capacity, and one new image discovered within the iOS 11 developer beta shows off a user interface similar to that of the AirPods pairing screen.

Image via iHelp BR

According to some images that we find in the internal files of the system, the pairing of the HomePod (codename B238) will be very similar to the AirPods wireless headphones. When you turn on the sound box for the first time, iOS will ask the user if they want to perform the setup with that iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch. It will not be possible to set up a HomePod for Mac or Apple TV – although it is very likely that the device will work normally with them later.

The next screen that appears on iOS references a HomePod setup process similar to the initial setup of an iPhone, iPad, or Apple Watch, with the major difference being that “Siri must be present in almost the entire process.” At one point, a string of code suggests that Siri will read out a four digit code to the user, which is then entered on the paired iOS device as a form of authentication.

A similar string mentions that users will need to enter the last four digits of the HomePod’s serial number, or the iOS device’s serial number, although some of these processes might be tied to repeatedly failed setup attempts as a form of security.

Users will need to confirm their Apple ID in order to sync iCloud and Apple Music with HomePod, and in addition the new data said that Apple accounts without two-factor authentication or iCloud Keychain enabled will not be able to complete some steps in the pairing process. The iOS 11 code strings also mention that “you must be connected to a WPA/WPA2 Personal Wi-Fi network to set up your HomePod.”

On HomePod, users will be able to choose the accent of Siri and the gender of the voice assistant, agree or disagree to send daily diagnostics to Apple, and agree to install updates manually or automatically through an iOS device. The code describes an ability for users to sync multiple HomePods in one house to save all of these settings across speakers, and even an “update all HomePods” and “install on all HomePods” feature to cut down the time of the update process for multi-HomePod households.

In other, more expected findings, the code strings mention that any songs, albums, and artists played through HomePod will be seen by a user’s followers on Apple Music and influence the recommendations in “For You.” Additionally, the HomePod’s touch-sensitive display area on the top of the device will allow for various volume and playback controls, including VoiceOver-enabled controls like “touch to speak,” “lift to activate,” and “hold on volume controls to change quickly.”

Previously, the HomePod firmware revealed a few UI sounds that users will likely hear during the pairing process, as well as some potential timer-related notifications. A recent comment by Inventec Appliances president David Ho — supplier of the HomePod — has suggested that the device will see a limited launch in December of around 500,000 units, before expanding in 2018 thanks to the addition of Foxconn to the speaker’s supply chain.

Related Roundup: HomePod
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22
Aug

Popular Backup Solution CrashPlan Discontinuing Personal Subscriptions


Code42, the company behind the popular cloud backup solution CrashPlan, today announced that it is sunsetting its CrashPlan for Home subscription options in the near future. Starting today, Code42 will no longer offer or renew CrashPlan for Home subscriptions.

In a video message, Code42 CEO Joe Payne said the company is ending its personal subscription options to focus solely on the business and organization market.

For existing Home customers, Code42 suggests they purchase a CrashPlan for Small Business plan or switch over to Carbonite, another backup service.

Customers who choose to use CrashPlan for Small Business can transfer their data within minutes. A Small Business plan is priced at $10 per month per device for unlimited upload space, but current CrashPlan for Home subscribers can get a 75 percent discount for the next 12 months. Code42 is allowing users to migrate cloud backups that are 5TB or smaller.


Customers who choose Carbonite can get 50 percent off of select Carbonite plans. Carbonite pricing starts at $60 per year for unlimited storage on a single device.

Current CrashPlan for Home subscribers can continue using CrashPlan until their subscriptions expire, but once that happens, they will need to choose a new backup solution. CrashPlan subscriptions are non-refundable, so customers will want to wait for their subscriptions to end before transferring to a new plan or service.

Code42 is earmarking October 22, 2018 as the end-of-support date for CrashPlan Home, with the company planning to honor all subscriptions until that date. Subscribers who have subscriptions that extend beyond October 22, 2018 will see their accounts upgraded to a CrashPlan for Small Business account with Code42 promising to send along additional information on the upgrade process before the service is discontinued.
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22
Aug

How to block field goals and punts in ‘Madden NFL 18’


For a very long time, blocking special teams plays in Madden sim was almost impossible. You had to get very lucky, even in designed block formations, as defensive players never seemed to get off the line fast enough. Even when you timed a running start up to the line correctly, momentum typically didn’t carry you close enough to get your defender’s hands on the pigskin. Madden NFL 17 added new features to make field goal and punt blocks more attainable. Those features carry over into Madden NFL 18. So while blocking a kick or a punt is still rare, as it should be, it’s not a pipe dream anymore. Here’s how to block kicks and punts in Madden 18, along with a few best practices.

Blocking field goals

The first thing you need to do when blocking a field goal is to choose a block play (it will say “block” it in the name of the play). With a block play selected, you’ll see three players with red icons denoted with a “B” for block above their heads on either side of the line. These are the defenders that you can use to block the kick.

Two of the defenders will be lined up across from an offensive lineman, while the third defender typically sets up a few steps off the line on the edge. You can cycle through the player you control by pressing O (B).

Regardless of which player you choose to go in for the block with, you have to get a good jump on the snap. To do this, right when the ball is snapped, press R2 (RT). If you don’t press this, your chances of blocking a field goal are incredibly low (we haven’t blocked one without getting a good jump thus far).

Timing the jump heightens your chances of propelling the defender through the line of scrimmage. If a defender engages you, you’ll have to slither off of him by quickly pressing one of the face buttons (typically X on PS4, A on Xbox One).

At this point, the holder will have set the ball up for the kicker, and the kicker is in motion to make his attempt at knocking the ball through the uprights.

While charging in, you have the choice to either dive with Square (X) or jump with Triangle (Y) to block it. In our experience, diving works best when rushing with the outside the defender, and jumping is suitable when rushing with an inside defender.

Be warned, though, when diving and jumping, make sure to not hit the kicker. If you do, you’ll receive a roughing the kicker penalty and your opponent will get a new set of downs. To curb this chance, we make a horizontal dive directly in front of the holder, or quickly turn away from the kicker after jumping.

Your chances of blocking a field goal varies depending on the distance of the attempt. For extra points and shorter field goal attempts (35 yards or less), the trajectory of the kick makes it harder to block. You’ll have a much better shot trying to block a long field goal — 40 yards and up — which requires a lower trajectory.

We think that the reward outweighs the risk of inadvertently roughing the kicker in extra point and long field goal situations, but would advise against going in for a block on shorter 3-point tries until you get the hang of the timing.

Blocking punts

For punt situations, once again, you have to choose a block punt scheme. Two to three defenders will have the icon above their heads for punt blocking scenarios. Like field goals, timing is key. You have to press R2 (RT) right when the ball is snapped to get a good jump on the play.

You have more ground to cover when blocking a punt, so make sure to continue holding R2 (RT) to sprint as you race into the backfield. If you get held up by a defender, which sometimes happens when attempting to block a punt with an inside defender, quickly press the indicated face button (again, typically X on PS4, A on Xbox One) to roll off of the lineman and charge into the backfield.

Like field goals, you can either dive or jump to block a punt. In our time with the game, diving for a punt should only be used when you are close enough to snag it right off the punter’s foot. Punts get airborne quickly, and you’re likely to miss it by diving even a step or two early.

Lastly, you have to be careful not to run into or tackle the punter. If you run into the punter, you’ll receive a five yard penalty (which could result in a first down for the offense). And if you rough the punter up, that’s 15 yards and an automatic first down. Unlike field goals though, we feel that going in to block the punt is a risk worth taking almost every time.

Tom Brady graces the cover of Madden NFL 18, available for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. Will he be saved from the Madden curse? Check out our history of the Madden curse to see the troubling odds he is up against.




22
Aug

Everything you need to set up your TV


Why it matters to you

Setting up a TV can be daunting, but with the right information the installation can go smoothly.

There’s more to setting up a TV than just plugging it in and turning it on. You need to get the right accessories and make the right tweaks to enjoy your new TV to its full potential. In this guide we’ll go through everything you need to set up your TV — from HDMI cables to picture settings — just the way you want it.

TV Location

The first thing to ask yourself is: Where is your TV going to go? If you’re wall mounting your TV, a cable and power management kit is a great way to make that install look clean. It helps you route your cables and power from near the floor, up through the wall to where your TV is mounted.

If you are setting your TV on a stand, we recommend securing it so it doesn’t tip over by accident. Whether it is a stray pillow hitting the TV or, worse, and earthquake, having a security strap is good protection against unknowns. There are many security straps available to help you do this.

Finally, if you don’t already have one, we recommend a surge protector or power strip to plug all your expensive electronics into. These not only let you plug everything into one place, but will protect your electronics from electrical spikes and surges.

TV Connections

Next, what are you hooking up to your TV? Do you already have a cable box, antenna, gaming console, Blu-ray or UltraHD Blu-ray player? What about a streaming box or stick? You’ll want to gather up all the sources you plan on connecting to the TV and see what types of cables they require. This way you only have to make one trip to the store for supplies.

Always use HDMI cables whenever possible. It provides the highest quality picture and sound. For newer 4K Ultra HD sources like an Ultra HD Blu-ray player or a 4K streaming set-top box, make sure you have HDMI cables rated to handle 4K bandwidth. The packaging, the cable itself, or the product description will typically tell you if the HDMI cable is “fast” enough.

Thin HDMI cables are much easier to route to components, and they minimize clutter, so it might be worth getting new HDMI cables just to save space.  However, do not spend too much on HDMI cables! A six-foot HDMI cable should go for $8 to $12 – anything more is overpriced and won’t provide any performance benefit. Older components like a Nintendo Wii will use analog RCA cables, so keep that in mind when you catalog which cables you will need.

If you want big sound to go with the big picture of your new TV, it’s certainly worth considering adding something like a sound bar, sound base, or even a home theater speaker system. No matter what you choose, it will upgrade the sound of your TV. Movies will be more fun to watch, and dialog will be much clearer and easier to hear. Remember, when connecting any speakers use HDMI cables if the speaker system will take it. If not, an optical cable will still deliver quality sound.

Picture Settings

Finally, once your TV is hooked up and powered on, you want to check the settings. There are many guides available to help you achieve the best picture quality, but these essential changes will help you enjoy your TV right away.

First, go into the part of the TV’s menu which lets you choose the picture mode. For the most accurate picture select the Movie or Cinema preset. Some TVs have separate options for bright and dark rooms. Adjust the backlight and brightness settings will also make the picture brighter. The Vivid and Sports modes are very bright, but the colors aren’t very accurate and the intense picture can wear on you in time. If you want the right balance between vividness and accuracy, the standard setting is the way to go.

Another key setting to adjust is motion smoothing, we recommend you turn this off. If you don’t, you’ll see image processing that makes the shows and movies you watch look like a soap opera. This is the number one complaint new TV buyers have and it is an easy fix.

Before you start setting up your TV, remember to plan ahead. Making a list and gathering everything together will streamline your installation process once you have started. Having a friend around is always a great idea too, especially for unboxing and placing or wall mounting the TV.

In this video, the Samsung Q9F, the BDI OLA stand, the DatacomTV cable organizer kit, the TV anti-tip strap, the RCA antenna, and the AmazonBasics HDMI cable were featured.




22
Aug

How to watch a pair of Nintendo Direct live-streams during Gamescom


Why it matters to you

Nintendo will give fans a new look at Super Mario Odyssey during Gamescom.

Nintendo has largely abandoned traditional press conferences at major events in favor of its Nintendo Direct live-streams. That trend continues into Gamescom 2017, with Nintendo once again planning to show off multiple highly anticipated games such as Super Mario Odyssey for Nintendo Switch and Metroid: Samus Returns for Nintendo 3DS.

How to watch

Nintendo’s Gamescom live-streams kick off with a Super Mario Odyssey-centric theme on Wednesday, August 23, at 6 a.m. PT. The stream can be watched on Nintendo’s dedicated Gamescom site or on its YouTube channel.

Then the following day, Thursday, August 24 at 3 a.m. PT, Nintendo will have a Metroid: Samus Returns-focused stream. Like Odyssey, the stream can be watched on Nintendo’s Gamescom site or through YouTube.

Gamescom is in Germany so the live-stream time for either of these events is not necessarily ideal for many people in the States. Even if you can’t watch, make sure to check back with us to get all the updates of what went down in both streams.

What to expect

Nintendo Direct live streams focused on one or two games typically have a fair amount of unseen gameplay. For Super Mario Odyssey, we will get another extended look at the open world Mario title. Producer Yoshiaki Koizumi will give a developer talk about Odyssey‘s gameplay. This may be the last good look we get at Mario’s upcoming adventure ahead of its October 27 launch.

As for day 2, Metroid: Samus Returns producer Yoshio Sakamoto, and MercurySteam creative director José Luis Márquez, will discuss and demonstrate new aspects from the upcoming 3DS title. Metroid: Samus Returns is a reimagining of the Game Boy Title Metroid II: Return of Samus. The game launches September 15 alongside a new orange special edition New Nintendo 3DS XL.

In addition to these to titles, Nintendo has announced that Fire Emblem Warriors and Xenoblade Chronicles 2 will also receive some stage time.

Those in attendance will get to try out those titles in addition to Pokkén Tournament DX, Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle, Mario & Luigi: Superstar Saga + Bowser’s Minions, and Monster Hunter Stories. It’s unclear if those titles, however, will also be present in live-streams.

Nintendo often inserts a surprise or two inside Nintendo Direct streams, so we’ll have to wait and see.




22
Aug

All Pinned out? Here’s how to delete your Pinterest account


Maybe you’ve Pinterest-ed your way into a black hole of crafting supplies and the only way to curb the addiction is to go cold turkey. Maybe you never really got into the online mood board, or maybe you have both a personal and a business Pinterest and don’t need both. Regardless, you’re looking to get your Pinterest profile offline. Pinterest offers two options for deleting an account: a deactivation that removes everything from the public eye but leaves it intact if you happen to change your mind, and a full, no-looking-back deletion. Both options are thankfully pretty straightforward. Find out how to delete your Pinterest account in this quick guide.

How To Deactivate Your Pinterest Account

Not sure if you are ready to give up pinning permanently? Deactivating an account means that your profile, including your Pins, aren’t publicly visible anymore and your other social media accounts are no longer connected to your Pinterest account.

While logged into Pinterest, click on your Profile button. In the Pinterest app, it’s the “person” icon at the bottom of the screen. If you’re using a web browser instead, click on the “Saved” menu option at the top.
Access your Pinterest settings by clicking on the bolt icon (it’s that hexagon with a circle cut out of the center). In the app, it’s at the top-right while inside your profile. Desktop users can find it right over their username on their profile page.
In mobile, tap “Edit settings,” then scroll down to the bottom and select “deactivate account.” On a desktop, under “Account Basics,” click on “deactivate account.”
Confirm your decision in the next window.

How To Delete Your Pinterest Account

Deleting a Pinterest account is just as easy as deactivating one. To make sure you really want to permanently loose all those Pins, Pinterest will revive the account if you log back in within two weeks. Otherwise, that Pinterest account is as gone as that Pinterest fail that meets the bottom of the trash can.

Head to your profile — tap the “person” icon in app (at the bottom of the screen) or click on the “Saved” option at the top on a desktop computer.
Access your account settings by tapping the bolt icon (it’s that hexagon with a circle cut out of the center). Mobile users will find it on the top-right of their profile next to the search bar while on a desktop browser that setting is above your username when viewing your profile.
Once inside the account settings, tap “Edit Settings” if you’re in the app or “Account Basics” in a browser.
In app, scroll to the bottom and select “close account.” If you’re in a browser and not the app, select the “deactivate account” button at the end of the Account Basics options.
Confirm your choice in the next window — on a browser, since both options are under the deactivation setting, you need to choose the “permanently close account” option instead of deactivation.

Remember, if you delete your Pinterest account, Pinterest archives the data for two weeks and all you have to do is log in and click a reactivation link inside your email, if you change your mind. If you deactivate your account, you can log in anytime to reactivate and still have access to those saved Pins.




22
Aug

What is Wi-Fi calling and how does it work?


Network coverage has been steadily improving, but there are still many people around the world who can’t get a decent phone signal in their homes. There are gaps in many networks, particularly in rural areas, as a quick glance at Open Signal’s coverage maps reveals. Wi-Fi calling could be the answer.

What is Wi-Fi calling?

Wi-Fi calling allows you to seamlessly use any Wi-Fi connection to make or receive calls when your network signal is weak. If you’re at home and there’s a dead spot in the back bedroom, or the bars on your smartphone drop down to one when you go into the bathroom, then your phone can automatically switch to your home Wi-Fi network and use that to make and receive calls.

The beauty of Wi-Fi calling is that it should work seamlessly. Assuming your carrier supports it, you’ve activated the appropriate setting on your phone, and you’re connected to a Wi-Fi network, then it should kick in automatically whenever you need it. All the calls you make and messages you send through Wi-Fi calling appear as normal in your usual messages app and call logs.

The icon in your notification bar might change to a small phone receiver with a Wi-Fi icon above it, or say VoLTE (short for voice over LTE), but, apart from that, you shouldn’t notice any difference between Wi-Fi calls and regular calls through your mobile network.

Bear in mind that, although Wi-Fi calling should be capable of handing over to the network if you move out of range of the Wi-Fi router, there’s a chance it will pause or drop the call. It depends on your carrier, network, and device.

Checking with your carrier

Different carriers have different policies regarding Wi-Fi calling, so your first port of call in trying to set it up is your carrier. In some cases, you might need to pay extra or jump through some hoops to activate Wi-Fi calling. Below are some pages on Wi-Fi calling from the four major U.S. carriers to help you get started:

  • AT&T Wi-Fi Calling
  • Sprint Wi-Fi Calling
  • T-Mobile Wi-Fi Calling
  • Verizon Wi-Fi Calling

Make sure that you read the terms and conditions carefully — calls and messages made using Wi-Fi calling are not necessarily free. In fact, carriers may charge their usual rates or subtract them from your plan allowance. Make sure you check to avoid any nasty surprises on your phone bill. You may also find that the feature doesn’t work overseas.

Carriers can also decide which devices they’ll support, so even if your phone is capable of Wi-Fi calling, you should confirm that the carrier allows it on your device.

Once you’ve confirmed that your carrier supports Wi-Fi calling for your phone and you’ve activated it on your account, you’ll need to make sure your phone has the right settings turned on.

How to turn on Wi-Fi calling on an iPhone

It’s easy to activate Wi-Fi calling on an iPhone, but you will need to have an iPhone 5C or later.

  • Go to Settings > Phone > Wi-Fi Calling and toggle it on.

How to turn on Wi-Fi calling on an Android phone

Activating Wi-Fi calling on an Android phone is just as easy, but the exact location of the setting may vary. For most Android phones:

  • Open the Phone app and tap the menu icon (aka, the three vertical dots at the upper-right corner). Then, tap Settings and you should see a Wi-Fi calling option that you can toggle on.

For a Samsung Galaxy:

  • Go to Settings > Connections > More connection settings and you should see a Wi-Fi calling option.

Just to complicate matters, some carriers put the setting elsewhere. For example, to activate the feature on Verizon:

  • Go to Settings > Advanced Calling and you should find an Activate Wi-Fi Calling option.

If you’re having trouble getting Wi-Fi calling to work on your Android device, then refer to your carrier’s website for specific instructions.

You can test whether Wi-Fi calling is working by activating Airplane mode, then turning just Wi-Fi back on, and connecting to your home Wi-Fi network. The icon should appear in your notification bar and you’ll be able to make or receive calls.

Alternatives to Wi-Fi calling

If you find that your device doesn’t support Wi-Fi calling or there’s a problem with your carrier, then you can always opt for an alternative. Check out the best video chat apps and the best messaging apps for some ideas. The only problem is that you and the person you want to call will both need to have the app installed and your messages and calls will be contained within that app, so they won’t appear in the default messages app or call logs on your phone.




22
Aug

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


Everyone likes Apple 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. 

ACT Prep

ACT Test Prep For Dummies gets you ready for one of the biggest tests of your high school years. This app features more than 950 practice questions covering critical English, reading, science, and math skills.

Available on:

iOS

Ashy Bines Ab Challenge

Discover your personal belly blueprint and fast track your journey to achieving the flat, sexy stomach you have always wanted.

Available on:

iOS

Voice4u AAC

Voice4u is picture-based communication app for those who have speech challenges. With Voice4u, you can easily bridge the communication gap.

Available on:

iOS

Life Hacks

Lifehacks brings you thousands of useful life-hacking tips that are aimed at improving your productivity and bringing calm to your life — an attempt to reclaim some leisure time and autonomy from the heavy demands of our busy lifestyles.

Available on:

iOS

ListBox

The most important thing about this reminder app is that it won’t leave you alone until you notice the reminder, and when you do, it suggests an action.

Available on:

iOS

Train Conductor

Directly control trains with your finger. Send them to their destinations by creating track connections with a quick swipe.

Available on:

iOS




22
Aug

Canon’s versatile new Pixma inkjet printers can handle any print job at home


Why it matters to you

Canon’s new multifunction inkjet printers are making printing more relevant, thanks to improved photo quality and a “hidden message” feature.

Canon announced seven new inkjet printers across two different product lines designed for personal and home office use. For general and creative in-home print jobs, the five new TS-series printers present upgrades over current models and add several features. The most novel is the new “Message in Print” ability that hides a message embedded in a printed image. The message can be viewed by anyone using the Message in Print app on an iOS device (coming fall 2017) by simply holding the phone’s camera over the printed image to scan it, much like a QR code or the Prynt pocket printer.

In a statement, Canon said Message in Print will help make photos and at-home projects “even more memorable.” It is also seems to be an attempt to keep prints relevant in an increasingly paperless, all-digital world. Such a feature could reignite some excitement for the medium (printing is seeing a resurgence, of sorts), or it could fizzle out quickly as just another gimmick.

Hidden messages aside, the new TS printers appear to be capable machines. Each model includes Bluetooth connectivity and offers improved ink quality — both new features. The range-topping TS9120 and TS8120 boast even greater print quality thanks to a six-way premium color system that uses a new photo blue ink to reduce graininess in bright and vibrant prints (replacing a gray tank). Those models also offer direct printing from an SD memory card or camera, and can even print to CD/DVD labels because apparently that’s still a thing people need to do. We found the TS9120’s predecessor, the TS9020, to be an excellent printer, and we expect the same from the new entry.

While the lower range TS6120, TS5120, and TS3120 models won don’t offer as many features and use a five-ink system instead of six, they do still have all the general abilities of a multifunction printer, including scanning and cloud-based printing. The TS9120 features a 5-inch LCD screen, is available in gray, gold, or red, and goes for $200. The TS8120 has a 4.3-inch screen, is available in black, gray, or red, and sells for $180. The TS6120 and TS5120 are available in black or white and sell for $150 and $100, respectively, while the TS3120 is available in white only for just $80.

Two more printers, specifically for the home office

Canon also introduced two models in its Pixma TR-series aimed at the busy work-from-home warrior. The new models offer wireless printing, scanning, copying, and faxing, and are about 35-percent smaller than the outgoing MX-series models they replace. They both feature a new industrial design, five-way color ink system, revamped user interface, automatic document feeders, and auto duplex printing. Like the new TS-series models, they also gain Bluetooth connectivity.

The TR8520 comes with a 4.3-inch LCD screen for $200, while the TR7520 offers the same feature set but makes due with a smaller 3-inch screen for $180. If you’re in the market for a new printer, you can learn more about these new models on Canon’s website, or check out some of our other favorite inkjet printers.




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