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21
Sep

FTC lawsuit over D-Link’s lax router security just took a big hit


In January, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) took D-Link to court over its incredibly insufficient security. The FTC claimed that the company failed to protect its routers and IP cameras from unauthorized access, exposing them to use in botnet attacks or outside viewings of camera feeds. But this week, the FTC’s case against D-Link took a hit as a judge dismissed three of the commission’s six complaints.

As reported by Consumerist, the dismissal stems from the FTC’s lack of proof to substantiate half of its claims. The counts in questions suggested that consumers were harmed by D-Link’s security vulnerabilities, but the FTC didn’t provide any evidence that consumers were indeed harmed.

In his decision, the California district judge said, “The FTC does not identify a single incident where a consumer’s financial, medical or other sensitive personal information has been accessed, exposed or misused in any way, or whose IP camera has been compromised by unauthorized parties, or who has suffered any harm or even simple annoyance and inconvenience from the alleged security flaws in the DLS devices. The absence of any concrete facts makes it just as possible that DLS’s devices are not likely to substantially harm consumers, and the FTC cannot rely on wholly conclusory allegations about potential injury to tilt the balance in its favor.”

The FTC does have an opportunity to amend its complaint, which if it chooses to do so, must be filed by October 20th.

Via: Consumerist

Source: FTC, Consumerist

21
Sep

How Peggy Whitson stayed in shape for nine months aboard the ISS


Space is no place for battles of the bulge. That’s why NASA insists on getting its astronauts into peak physical condition before sending them offworld. But aboard the ISS, in a living space the size of a football field, the human body will readily go to pot. So how did Peggy Whitson, the longest-orbiting astronaut in American history, manage an astonishing nine and a half months in microgravity without having her body and mind atrophy? She hit the astronaut gym. Yes, of course, there’s a gym on the ISS — just, no lap pool.

The human body, built as it is for terrestrial life on Earth, does not readily adapt to the rigors of microgravity. Half of all astronauts suffer from Space Adaptation Syndrome (SAS or, more commonly, “space sickness”) for the first few hours their missions, at least until their vestibular systems readjust to the weightless environment.

Fluid redistribution is another common issue. Since there’s no gravity for the body’s blood pressure to fight against, fluid becomes more distributed throughout the body — that is, it leeches out of our veins and cells. The human body can lose up to 22 percent of its plasma, the juice that carries our red blood cells through our circulatory system, and the results are not good. Especially when astronauts return to Earth. While still in space, the heart can begin to atrophy thanks to there being less blood to pump. This can lead to a condition known as “orthostatic intolerance”.

KAZAKHSTAN-RUSSIA-US-ISS-SPACE

“When you lie down, stand up quickly, and feel light-headed, that’s orthostatic intolerance,” Don Hagan, director of exercise physiology at Johnson Space Center, said in a 2002 statement. “Your body tries to stop this from happening. It does so by increasing its heart rate and blood pressure to keep more blood returning to your heart.” If not, down you go. But exercise can help prevent fainting by increasing blood volume and circulation.

Back on-planet, the astronauts’ symptoms, unfortunately, will continue for a time. They may have difficulty standing for more than 10 minutes without fainting because all the leaked fluid will pool in their lower extremities (thanks, gravity), which results in orthostatic hypotension.

That fluid shift can cause other issues as well. It greatly increases the amount of intracranial pressure, flattening the eyeball to the point of potentially crushing the optic nerve. In fact, when NASA surveyed 300 former astronauts, 23 percent of the short-flight (sub-6 month) and 49 percent of the long-flight astronauts mentioned that both their near and distance vision had been impacted during their flights. And, for some, the issues continued for years after.

Astronaut Scott Kelly discussed his post-orbital symptoms at a recent NASA event:

After I got back, I’ve talked about just being really sore and stiff. My skin had not touched anything in 340 days except just your clothing. Anything it touched, it felt like it was on fire. I actually had some rashes and kind of discoloration anywhere I had contact. And then I kind of had flu-like symptoms for a few days. Had I not been in space for a year and I knew what this was, I would have gone to the emergency room and said, “Hey, I don’t know what’s wrong with me, but I’m not feeling that great.”

Perhaps most alarming is the rate at which muscles and bones, not just the heart, degrade when deprived of Earth’s gravitational attraction. “Among the biggest changes we see is in the skeletal system with bone loss, and the muscular system with muscle lost and strength lost,” Dr. Richard Scheuring, a NASA flight surgeon, told Engadget. “Those are the two things that really persist. The cardiovascular deconditioning missing just because you’re not working as hard. It seems to level off at about three weeks and we don’t seem to really get any worse.”

“We think there are also changes occurring that bone marrow that affect the production of red blood cells so you get what we call spaceflight anemia,” he continued. “But it doesn’t really have physiological or performance impacts and is pretty well tolerated among a healthy population.”

What does have a psychological effect on astronauts aboard the ISS is the speed at which they orbit: roughly once every 90 minutes. That breaks the day into 45 minutes of light and 45 minutes of dark and can cause some wicked jet lag. To that end, NASA is working with Harvard to study how best to counter the station’s insomniatic effects.

One such system, Scheuring explained, involves using ambient lighting of varying wavelengths. That is, the lighting will be further along the blue-green end of the spectrum to simulate bright morning sunshine which increases the astronauts’ alertness. “That blue light is the equivalent to a cup of coffee,” Scheuring explained. The wavelength then fades towards the red end of the spectrum in the afternoon to dusk hours to boost the body’s melatonin production, which helps us sleep.

Despite the current two-and-a-half-hour-a-day workout regimen demanded by the agency, spending six months in space can see the average astronaut lose between 11 and 17 percent of their strength, around 10 percent of their endurance, and two to seven percent of their bone density.

Before NASA introduced these countermeasures, astronauts were losing one to three percent of their bone density per month, Scheuring explained. “To put that in perspective, a 55-year-old postmenopausal woman loses one to two percent of her bone density every year.” What’s more, that discarded calcium winds up in the kidneys, in turn greatly increasing the chance of the astronauts developing kidney stones.

But that’s where the orbital gym comes in. Crews have access to three pieces of exercise equipment: a Cycle Ergometer (read: a stationary bike); an anchored treadmill equipped with a restraint system that enables astronauts to mimic the effects of gravity as they run; and the ARED (Advanced Resistance Exercise Device), a “weight lifting” system (to the extent something can exist in microgravity) that relies on flywheels and vacuum cylinders to generate resistance.

Thanks to these exercises, “our crews are coming back in much better shape, they recover much quicker,” Scheuring said. “Generally, if our astronauts stick to our post-flight reconditioning program and they’ve worked hard in space, within 30 days of coming back from a six-month mission, we can have them at their baseline numbers for strength flexibility and stamina.”

The ARED has been in service aboard the ISS since 2009 as the station’s all-in-one strength trainer. It’s flexible enough to accommodate every size of astronaut that’s been aboard and can generate up to 600 pounds of resistance. That draw weight comes from a group of vacuum cylinders attached to a flywheel, which simulates the inertia you feel when lifting on Earth. With the ARED, astronauts can work out all of their major muscle groups, either following a preset routine or simply choosing the parts they want to work on that day. NASA also recently instituted additional abdominal and lumbar exercises to address astronauts’ complaints of lower back pain.

But even with this state-of-the art equipment, NASA is working on ways to keep improving its crews’ fitness. The agency is currently looking at the benefits of high-intensity, low-volume exercise using the ARED, dubbed the Integrated Resistance and Aerobic Training Study (SPRINT). Currently, astronauts aboard the ISS spend six days a week lifting but it’s generally low intensity with lots of reps. SPRINT’s research team has found that cutting back to three days a week but pushing more weights for fewer reps “better protects against loss of skeletal muscle mass and function” than the existing regimen, according to NASA.

The study also found that interval aerobic exercises were more effective than continuous exertion at maintaining cardiovascular function. As such, the researchers have settled on augmenting that high intensity lifting with continuous aerobic exercise and then performing interval aerobics on the off-days.

This information will prove invaluable as we reach further out into our solar system, sending astronauts first back to the moon and then eventually on to Mars. Just getting to the Red Planet will take at least half a year and the last thing you want to be when setting foot on a new planet is a pudgy, atrophied space explorer.

21
Sep

How to Use the Flashlight in watchOS 4


watchOS 4 brings several new features to the Apple Watch, including a new flashlight function that lights up the face of the Apple Watch so you can have an extra light when you’re digging around in a bag, trying to open a door in the dark, or wherever else you might require a little bit of light.

It doesn’t put off as much light as an iPhone screen, but it’s handy in a pinch, especially since it’s a hands-free light source.

Apple has also designed the flashlight to be a safety feature for runners and bicycle riders. At night, you can turn it on and have it flash, making other people out on the road aware of your presence.

Accessing the Flashlight

While wearing the Apple Watch, raise your wrist up to illuminate the screen.
Swipe up from the bottom to bring up the Control Center.
Tap on the icon that looks like a miniature flashlight.
Your Apple Watch display will now light up at maximum brightness.
Close the flashlight by swiping down to dismiss it or by pressing the Digital Crown.

Changing Flashlight Modes

There are three flashlight modes in total – pure white, flashing white, and red. Changing between them is simple:

With the flashlight active on the initial bright white display, swipe to the left.
This switches the flashlight to the second display mode, which is a flashing black and white.
Swipe to the left a second time to access the red light.
Swipe right again to cycle through modes.
Close the flashlight by swiping down to dismiss it or by pressing the Digital Crown.

Related Roundups: Apple Watch, watchOS 4
Buyer’s Guide: Apple Watch (Buy Now)
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21
Sep

How to Use Do Not Disturb While Driving in iOS 11


In iOS 11, Apple has introduced a Do Not Disturb While Driving Feature that’s designed to mute incoming calls, texts, and notifications while you’re driving to cut down on accident-causing distractions.

Do Not Disturb While Driving is not a feature that’s enabled automatically, but you will see a popup prompting you to turn it on when Apple detects the motion of a car after installing iOS 11 for the first time. Despite the notification, you’ll still need to choose how you want to use the feature if you miss the initial setup process.

Do Not Disturb can be set to turn on manually, automatically when the iPhone detects a car’s acceleration, or when an iPhone connects to a car’s Bluetooth.

Enabling Do Not Disturb While Driving

Open the Settings app.
Tap Do Not Disturb.
Scroll down to “Do Not Disturb While Driving.”
Tap on “Activate” to choose how you want Do Not Disturb While Driving to be turned on. If you don’t want to use Do Not Disturb While Driving, set it to manual.Whenever Do Not Disturb While Driving is activated, you’ll see a bar at the top of the screen letting you know incoming notifications are being muted.

Do Not Disturb While Driving Control Center Toggle

If you don’t want to have Do Not Disturb While Driving turn on automatically but still want to use it, there’s a Control Center setting for activating it.

Open the Settings app.
Choose Control Center.
Select Customize Controls.
Add Do Not Disturb While Driving, which has an image of a car.
This adds the Do Not Disturb While Driving toggle to your Control Center. To turn it on or off, you just need to swipe to open the Control Center and tap it.

If You’re a Passenger

When the automatic setting is enabled, Do Not Disturb While Driving will turn on whenever your iPhone detects the acceleration of a vehicle. This can be inconvenient if you’re a passenger, so you’ll need to turn it off through the Control Center or by tapping the persistent Do Not Disturb While Driving popup at the top of the display to let Apple know you’re a passenger.

Choosing Your Auto Reply Options

When you’re driving, all of your incoming text messages are muted. You can choose an automatic text message that lets people know you’re in the car and will text later, and you can customize who sees the message.


Open the Settings app.
Choose Do Not Disturb.
Scroll down to “Auto-Reply To” and tap it.
You can choose for automatic texts to be sent to Recents, Favorites, All Contacts, or No one, if you would rather not have your phone send automatic replies.

Customizing Your Auto Reply

Open the Settings app.
Choose Do Not Disturb.
Scroll down to “Auto-Reply” and tap it.
Apple sets a default message in this section, but you can change it to say whatever you want. This is the message people will receive when texting you when Do Not Disturb While Driving is enabled.

If there’s an urgent issue and someone needs to get in contact with you immediately, they can break through Do Not Disturb While Driving by texting you “urgent.” This will override your Do Not Disturb settings and will notify you of the text immediately.


An ideal setup is to set auto replies to your favorites, which likely translates to close friends and family. This will let them text you in an emergency situation, but will prevent other less urgent messages from being a distraction.

Phone Calls

If your iPhone is connected to your car’s Bluetooth system, iOS 11 is smart enough to know you have a hands-free calling method available. In this situation, calls will continue to come through even when Do Not Disturb While Driving is enabled. Texts and notifications from apps will continue to be muted, though.

If you’re not connected to Bluetooth and have no hands-free accessory, calls will be blocked like text messages and notifications.

Parental Restrictions

For parents of teenagers, there’s an option to enable a restriction that will prevent Do Not Disturb While Driving settings from being changed or toggled off, guaranteeing children are using the feature whenever they’re in the car. Here’s how to turn it on:

Open the Settings app.
Choose General.
Scroll down to Restrictions and tap it.
Enter the Restriction passcode on the device, if you’ve set one.
Scroll down to the “Allow Changes” section and choose Do Not Disturb While Driving.
Select “Don’t Allow Changes.”

Related Roundup: iOS 11
Tag: Do Not Disturb While Driving
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21
Sep

OWC Launches New USB-C Travel Dock Suitable for MacBooks


OWC has launched a new USB-C travel dock suitable for Apple’s latest MacBook and MacBook Pro notebooks.

The dock connects to a Mac or PC with a single USB-C cable and provides access to the following five ports:

  • 2× USB 3.1 Gen 1 ports
  • 1× USB-C port for power
  • 1× HDMI 2.0 port
  • 1× SD card reader

The USB-C port provides up to 60W of pass-through charging, while the HDMI 2.0 port can drive a 4K display at 30Hz.

The compact-sized dock is available on MacSales.com in MacBook-like Gold, Rose Gold, Silver, and Space Gray for $49.99 in the United States.

It’s also available on Amazon in select colors.

Tags: USB-C, dock, OWC
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21
Sep

Instagram Face Filters Expand to Live Video


Instagram today expanded its selection of face filters to live video, allowing users to swap between filters when filming live content.

To use face filters during a live video, Instagram users can tap on the bottom right corner to browse through the filters and then apply them.

Starting today, you can play with face filters while sharing live video. Whether you’re channeling a kitten or want to add some stars or rainbow light to your face, you can easily try on face filters while connecting with friends and followers in the moment.

All existing face filters are now available in live video, along with a brand-new sunglasses filter that will be available exclusively in live video for the next week. The sunglasses filter allows users to tap to change the scenery reflected in the lenses of the filter.

Instagram says face filters for live video are rolling out globally over the course of the next few weeks.

Tag: Instagram
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21
Sep

LIFX Bulbs Finally Gain Support for HomeKit


Popular smart light bulb manufacturer LIFX has been promising to add HomeKit support to its bulbs for quite some time now, and with an app update released this morning, some LIFX bulbs are now HomeKit compatible.

The 3.8.1 LIFX app update adds HomeKit support for LIFX, LIFX GU10, LIFX Downlight, and LIFX+ bulbs. It’s only the third-generation bulbs that work with HomeKit — original bulbs and LIFX White 800/Color 1000 won’t work, nor will the company’s LED strips.

A firmware update is required to enable support, with the app able to provide a HomeKit code for lights that did not ship with one. From there, the bulbs can be added to a HomeKit setup like any other product.

LIFX bulbs are similar to the Philips Hue line of bulbs, offering a range of color and white selections that can be controlled with a smartphone. LIFX bulbs do not require a hub and are controlled over Wi-Fi.

Pricing on LIFX bulbs starts at $59.99, but multiple bulbs can be purchased for a discount. LIFX bulbs can be bought from the LIFX website.

Tag: HomeKit
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21
Sep

Craig Federighi Says 3D Touch App Switcher Gesture Will Return in Future Update to iOS 11


Apple software engineering chief Craig Federighi has revealed that a popular 3D Touch gesture for accessing the App Switcher will apparently return in a future update to iOS 11.

Federighi, replying to an email from MacRumors reader Adam Zahn, said Apple had to “temporarily drop support” for the gesture due to an unidentified “technical constraint.”

Question from Zahn: Could we at least make the 3D Touch app switch gesture an option in iOS 11 so that I could retain the ability to switch apps that way instead of having to double tap the home button?

Response from Federighi: Hi Adam,

We regretfully had to temporarily drop support for this gesture due to a technical constraint. We will be bringing it back in an upcoming iOS 11.x update.

Thanks (and sorry for the inconvenience)!

– craig

On devices that support 3D Touch running iOS 9 or iOS 10, users can press deeply on the left side of the screen, drag to the right, and release to quickly access the App Switcher. The gesture stopped working in the iOS 11 beta, and an Apple engineer later confirmed it was “intentionally removed.”


MacRumors has verified this email exchange passed through mail servers with an IP address range linked to Apple’s headquarters in Cupertino, California. Coupled with the fact Federighi has been replying to several customer emails since the iPhone X event last week, we’re fairly confident in its accuracy.

Federighi replies have also revealed that Face ID will work with most sunglasses and that Apple has considered a Nightstand mode for iPhone X.

Tags: Craig Federighi, 3D Touch
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21
Sep

The best Chromebooks you can buy right now


Chromebooks occupy a unique section of the laptop market. They’re not quite as full-featured as typical notebooks running Windows 10 or MacOS, and instead they run the featherweight Chrome OS from Google. They’re lighter, more portable, and generally have better battery life than their larger counterparts. These are notebooks for students, professionals, and anyone else who needs a laptop designed to spend more time on the go than on a desk.

Nearly every major manufacturer offers their own spin on the Chromebook, and the market has never been more crowded. There’s a lot of options available that look similar at a glance, so we’ve narrowed things down for you by sorting through them all to pick three of the best Chromebooks.

Our pick

Samsung Chromebook Pro

Why should you buy this: You want a Chromebook prepared for the future of Chrome OS

Our Score

The best

Samsung Chromebook Pro

The Samsung Chromebook Pro is the best Chromebook on the market, full stop.

$549.99 from Samsung

Who’s it for: Students, professionals, and anyone in between.

How much will it cost: $550

Why we picked the Samsung Chromebook Pro:

Between the powerful, efficient Intel Core M processor, and the gorgeous 2,400 x 1600 display, this little thing isn’t just an impressive Chromebook, it’s an impressive ultralight laptop.

Building on the legacy of the Chromebooks that came before, Samsung has elevated the design and capabilities of their latest offering, rolling in support for Google Play apps alongside a versatile touch-screen display. Fold it back, and it becomes an Android tablet, set it upright and it’s a mobile workstation.

The Samsung Chromebook Pro is like a Swiss Army knife, capable of filling a variety of roles throughout your day. It’s still a little expensive for a Chromebook, but it’s well under what you’d pay for a comparable Windows 10 notebook.

Our full review

The best 15-inch Chromebook

Acer Chromebook 15

Why should you buy this: If you need an affordable notebook with a 1080p display

Our Score

The best 15-inch Chromebook

Acer Chromebook 15

The Asus Chromebook 15 provides a full-sized 1080p display in an affordable — if peculiar — package.

$269.99 from Amazon

Who’s it for: Anyone who needs 15 inches of screen real estate on a budget.

How much will it cost: $230+

Why we picked the Acer Chromebook 15:

The Acer Chromebook 15 is one of the only Chromebooks with a 15-inch display, making it a bit of a rarity. With a size and form factor closer to a 15-inch premium laptop than a budget-oriented netbook, the Acer Chromebook 15 delivers the same screen real estate as much higher-priced competitors.

Rather than feeling cramped when you have two windows side-by-side on one of the more svelte Chromebook offerings, the Acer Chromebook 15 is just big enough to allow you all the room you need to multi-task. On top of that, the Chromebook 15 features a dual-core Intel Celeron CPU clocked at 1.5GHz, giving you just enough power to multi-task without feeling any serious system lag.

The size of this laptop also gives you room to stretch out. Smaller Chromebooks are more portable, but they also can feel cramped, particularly if you’re a large person with similarly large hands. Anyone can get comfortable with this system. It even has a decent keyboard and touchpad.

Our full review

The best budget Chromebook

Asus Chromebook C202

Why should you buy this: You need a rugged laptop for a young student

The best budget Chromebook

Asus Chromebook C202

The Asus C202 isn’t the fastest or prettiest Chromebook out there, but it’s tough.

$218.99 from Amazon.com

Who’s it for: Grade school, middle school, or high school students

How much will it cost: $200

Why we picked the Asus Chromebook C202:

The Asus Chromebook C202 is one of the most inexpensive and durable notebooks on the market today. Designed from the ground up to withstand the rigors of educational use, the C202 isn’t going to be winning any awards for speed or design, but it can handle bumps that would kill other computers.

This thing is built like a tank. With rubberized bumpers built into the chassis itself, it can withstand short drops and a nearly endless amount of jostling. This is the notebook for active students, or for teachers who might not want to risk a more expensive laptop in a perilous environment like a classroom.

For under $200, the C202 packs an Intel Celeron N3060 processor, only two to four gigabytes of onboard memory, and 16GB of storage space. So, it’s definitely not the fastest machine. But this notebook provides the essentials in a durable, shock-tested chassis that will likely outlast every other laptop in your household.

Read more here

How we test

When laptops enter our labs, they undergo a torturous battery of tests intended to give us a look at how each one will perform in a variety of situations. We want to define their limits, find out what they can do in everyday use and how they perform when they’re pushed.

We test individual components like the display, the CPU, GPU, and hard disk, using specific benchmarks to see how they stack up against competitors. We test for speed, reliability, and most importantly, we just spend a lot of time with each laptop.

You can find out how individual components work on their own by checking out manufacturer specs, but we test notebooks as a whole as well. We don’t just want to find out how fast each component is, we want to see how they complement each other, how they perform as a package. That way, we can give you a fully-rounded recommendation.

Before buying a Chromebook, think about Android apps

Chrome OS isn’t the most robust operating system around, but it gets the job done for Chromebooks by providing the essentials — web browsing, word processing, browsing basic file types. But sometimes, you need more than a Chromebook provides. Does that mean you should jump ship or skip over Chromebooks entirely? Not anymore.

Starting in 2017, every new model of Chromebook will support the Google Play store and will be able to run Android apps. You’re no longer be limited to the Chrome ecosystem, and you can get just as much functionality out of your Chromebook as you could out of an Android phone or tablet.

Some earlier models also feature Android integration. For a full and continually updated list you can check here. To find out how to install Android apps on your (compatible) Chromebook, check out the official instructions from Google here.

Is a Chromebook for you?

Chromebooks aren’t for everyone, and some users would be frustrated by their lack of functionality. Others might not even notice that Chrome OS is a bit more limited than traditional operating systems like Windows 10 and Mac OS.

It all depends on how you use your current laptop or desktop. If you need to run a lot of specialized applications like Photoshop, Illustrator, or even if you absolutely need the Microsoft Office Suite and can’t settle for Google Docs, a Chromebook probably isn’t for you. On the other hand, it’s great for people who mostly surf the web or stick to other online tasks.

Chromebooks are devices that excel at general-purpose use — think of a Chromebook as a slightly more robust tablet, or a big smart phone with a keyboard. If you can’t do it in a web browser, you probably won’t be able to do it on a Chromebook. That said, if you just need an affordable mobile device to bridge the gap between a desktop and your smart phone, a Chromebook might be for you.




21
Sep

How to Type to Siri on your iPhone or iPad with iOS 11


Apple’s iOS 11 brings variety of features and refinements to the iPhone and iPad, including a redesigned Control Center and new camera effects. The company’s latest mobile operating system also brings new updates and capabilities to its virtual assistant, Siri. With iOS 11, users can type to Siri whenever they have a question or command, instead of having to speak out loud. Here’s how to enable and use the apt-titled Type to Siri feature.

Change your settings

To turn on the Type to Siri feature, go to Settings > General > Accessibility > Siri and toggle on Type to Siri. Other customization options with Siri include “Always On,” which provides voice feedback when when your phone is set to silent. There’s also “Control with Ring Switch,” which will signal for Siri to show text but refrain from speaking out loud when your ringer is off. Keep in mind that the latter feature will still beep when called upon, however. The last option is “Hands-Free Only,” which only beeps and gives voice feedback when you say “Hey Siri” or when connected to Bluetooth, headphones, or CarPlay.

Using Type to Siri

After calling upon Siri through voice or by holding down the Home Button — or the larger button located on the right side, if you’re using the iPhone X — the keyboard will appear and you can start typing your question or command. Once you press Done, Siri will provide the answer for you on the screen. Depending on your settings, Siri may or may not reply out loud.

You’re not limited to basic requests

Siri can set alarms, schedule meetings, launch apps, and perform a range of other basic tasks, but iOS 11 expands the possibilities. Siri now works with the Notes app to create to-do lists, notes, and reminders, and with banking apps for account transfer and balance queries. For example, if you want to send or request money from a friend, you can do so by typing “Send Stephanie $30 on Venmo for lunch” which will then automatically open the Venmo app.

Type to Siri vs. texting Google Assistant

Google Assistant didn’t always have the option to type out your questions either — Google introduced the feature in May. When you open the iOS app, the interface resembles a messaging window, one where you can text the Assistant your question or command. You’ll then receive results instantly, and your history will be kept within the same window for you to reference later. But if you’d rather ask your question or say a command out loud instead of physically entering it, you can easily do so by tapping the microphone icon within the app.

With Siri, it’s a bit different. When the setting is enabled, you’re still able to call upon Siri with your voice and the keyboard will appear as an option. You can choose to either continue to speak out loud or type it out. But once you start using the keyboard, you’ll no longer be able to ask or command Siri through voice. Instead, you’ll have to restart it by saying “Hey Siri,” again. For now, the interface doesn’t offer a way to switch between the two in the app.

While it is easier to jump between the keyboard and voice features, it’s important to note that Google Assistant is extremely limited in iOS. You’ll still be able to make phone calls, send texts, schedule calendar events, and play music, though Siri can do all that and more while retaining access to a slew of integrated apps.

To learn about more about Apple’s latest mobile operating system, make sure to check out our roundup of iOS 11 tips and tricks.




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