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22
Sep

Apple CEO Tim Cook ‘Thrilled’ With Launch Day Response to iPhone 8


As he often does on product launch days, Apple CEO Tim Cook this morning stopped by the Apple Store in Palo Alto, California as customers gathered to purchase an iPhone 8, Apple Watch Series 3, or 4K Apple TV.

Cook had a few minutes to speak with CNBC, and he said that he’s “thrilled” with what he’s seeing on launch day. Some stores have sold out of the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus he says, and many locations are out of the LTE Apple Watch Series 3 models.

Image via CNBC

“Here’s what we’re seeing right now. The watch with LTE — the Series 3 Watch — we are sold out in so many places around the world. And we’re working really hard to meet demand. We’ve sold out of iPhone 8 and 8 Plus in some stores, but we’ve got good supply there. You can see what’s going on here this morning — I couldn’t be happier.”

Cook spent time mingling with friends and joining in on the staff tradition of cheering and waving to customers purchasing a new iPhone. “We really like what we’re seeing,” Cook said.

Cook also commented on the LTE issues plaguing the new Apple Watch, which have caused some major publications not to recommend the device for purchase.

“The issue is very minor, it will be fixed in a software update,” Cook told CNBC. “It has to do with the handoff between Wi-Fi and cellular, and we’ll fix that. It only happens in a rare number of cases. I’ve been using it for quite a while and it works great. So we’re very happy about it.”

The bug surfaced when reviewers got their hands on the Apple Watch Series 3 and noticed that it often wouldn’t connect to LTE. It turns out, the watch is mistakenly joining unauthenticated Wi-Fi networks with interstitial agreement pages that can’t be bypassed. Apple has said the bug will be fixed in an update, but has not given a timeline for the fix.

Despite Cook’s positivity, some reports from around the world have suggested demand for the iPhone 8 is low. Reuters reported a “bleak turnout” in Australia and later said there was a “muted launch” in Asia.

The iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus are in stock and available for launch day purchase in many stores around the world.

Tag: Tim Cook
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22
Sep

iPhone 8 Plus vs. Galaxy S8 Plus: Which massive smartphone reigns supreme?


The iPhone 8 Plus, one of the three new phones Apple announced at a splashy event in early September, may not have Face ID or Animoji, but it’s still a great phone. It’s got Apple’s new A11 Bionic system-on-chip, a glass back that’s compatible with wireless Qi chargers, and amped-up loudspeakers.

But the competition is formidable to say the least, and perhaps no phone measures up to the iPhone 8 Plus quite like the Galaxy S8 Plus. Samsung’s flagship boasts a speedy processor, a massive amount of memory, and a stunning edge-to-edge screen.

So how do the two smartphone titans compare? Read our iPhone 8 Plus vs. Galaxy S8 Plus guide for a blow-by-blow comparison of all the major features.

Specs

Galaxy S8 Plus

iPhone 8 Plus

Size
 6.28 × 2.89 × 0.32 inches (159.5 × 73.4 × 8.1 mm)
6.24 x 3.07 x 0.30 inches (158.4 x 78.1 x 7.5 mm)
Weight
173 grams (6.1 ounces)
 202 grams (7.13 ounces)
Screen
6.2-inch Super AMOLED
 5.5-inch LCD IPS Retina HD
Resolution
2,960 × 1,440 pixels (529 ppi)
1,920 x 1,080 pixels (401 ppi)
OS
Android 7.0 Nougat
iOS 11
Storage
64GB (US), 128, 256GB (international)
64, 256GB
MicroSD card slot
Yes
No
NFC support
Yes
Yes, Apple Pay only
Processor
Qualcomm Snapdragon 835, Samsung Exynos 8895 (international)
A11 Bionic with 64-bit architecture, M10 motion coprocessor
RAM
4GB (U.S.), 6GB (select markets)
3GB
Connectivity
GSM, CDMA, HSPA, EVDO, LTE, 802.11a/b/g/n/ac Wi-Fi
4G LTE, GSM, CDMA, HSPA+, 802.11a/b/g/n/ac Wi-Fi
Camera
12MP rear, 8MP front
Dual 12-megapixel rear, 7MP front
Video
Up to 4K at 30fps
Up to 4K at 60fps, 1080p at 240fps
Bluetooth
Yes, version 5
Yes, version 5
Fingerprint sensor
Yes
Touch ID
Other sensors
Accelerometer, gyroscope, barometer, compass, heart rate, proximity sensor, iris scanner
Barometer, 3-axis gyro, accelerometer, proximity sensor, ambient light sensor
Water resistant
Yes, IP68 rated
Yes, IP67 rated
Battery
3,500mAh
2,675mAh

 

Ports
USB-C
Lightning
Marketplace
Google Play Store
App Store
Color offerings
Black, silver, gray, blue (international), gold (international)
Gold, silver, and space gray
Carriers

AT&T, Verizon, Sprint, T-Mobile

Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile, Sprint

Price
 $850
$800
DT review
4 stars out of 5
Hands-on review

The iPhone 8 Plus and Galaxy S8 Plus both have powerful hardware. In fact, they’re pretty evenly matched.

The iPhone 8 Plus features the A11 Bionic system-on-chip, Apple’s cutting-edge processor designed specifically for the new iPhone. It consists of six cores total, two low-power cores that juggle high-intensity apps and four low-power cores to handle less demanding tasks, that work in tandem with a custom-designed three-core graphics chip.

Apple calls the A11 Bionic “the most powerful and smartest” ever in a smartphone, and it has the evidence to back it up. The A11’s high-performance cores and energy-efficient cores are 25 percent and 70 percent faster, respectively, than the A10 Fusion chip in the iPhone 7, and Apple’s GPU is up to 30 percent faster.

The Galaxy S8 Plus has Qualcomm’s octa-core Snapdragon 835 processor — the same chipset in the HTC U11, OnePlus 5, and LG V30. But more cores don’t necessarily equate to better performance. Early Geekbench 4 benchmarks show the A11 Bionic achieving a score of 4,188 in single-core performance and 10,069 in multi-core performance, or almost double the Galaxy S8 Plus’s best showing (1,832 single-core and 6,301 multi-core).

The Galaxy S8 Plus may have a leg up when it comes to memory, though. It packs 4GB of RAM, and while Apple doesn’t officially disclose specs like RAM and battery capacity, leaks suggest the iPhone 8 Plus has 3GB.

The differences between Android and iOS’s memory management make the real-world advantage tough to quantify.

The Galaxy S8 Plus should be theoretically capable of juggling more Chrome tabs, apps, and background tasks at once, but the differences between Android and iOS’s memory management make the real-world advantage tough to quantify.

Storage capacity is a different story. The Galaxy S8 Plus comes in 64GB and 256GB flavors, like the iPhone 8 Plus, but has a MicroSD card slot that supports up to 2TB of external storage.

Both the iPhone 8 Plus and the Galaxy S8 Plus have Bluetooth 5 onboard, which has four times the speed and twice the range of the iPhone 7’s Bluetooth 4.2, and both phones support near-field communication (NFC) for contactless payment at stores like Starbucks and Wallgreens. But the Galaxy S8 Plus also features magnetic secure transmission (MST), Samsung’s in-house payments technology that works with more 90 percent of point-of-sales terminals.

Overall, the iPhone 8 Plus has a clear advantage in terms of raw horsepower.

Winner: iPhone 8 Plus

Design, display, and durability

Jeremy Kaplan/Digital Trends

Judging by the specs, the iPhone 8 Plus and Galaxy S8 Plus shouldn’t feel all that different in the hand. The iPhone 8 Plus is a bit heavier at 202 grams, while the S8 Plus weighs 173 grams. They’re about the same height (6.24 inches versus 6.28 inches) and length (3.07 inches versus 2.89). But their designs are as different as their processors.

The Galaxy S8 Plus has a curved edge-to-edge screen that tapers off at either side and runs the length of the front, extending all the way to the space formerly reserved for a physical home button. There’s a generous amount of screen real estate, but the slippery glass sides can be tough to grip.

The all-glass back in the S8 Plus houses a single camera, flash, and fingerprint sensor. That’s all well and good for the most part, but the fingerprint scanner’s awkward placement next to the camera makes the lens pretty easy to smudge.

The iPhone 8 Plus, conversely, retains the look and feel of the iPhone 7 Plus. In fact, the two are nearly indistinguishable side by side. Thick bezels border all four sides of the flat screen, and Apple’s iconic Touch ID-enabled home button sits above the bottom chin.

The back is bare for the most part, save a glass cover that supports Qi wireless charging (more on that later). But the iPhone 8 Plus’s dual cameras stand out, and we’ll take a closer look at them in the camera section.

Both phones are durable, though the Galaxy S8 Plus is slightly more water resistant than the iPhone 8 Plus. It’s IP68 rated to withstand immersion in water up to five meters for 30 minutes, while the iPhone 8 Plus is IP67 rated for up to three feet of water for 30 minutes. The jury is out on their respective shatter and impact resistance, but it’s safe to say that neither the Galaxy S8 Plus nor the iPhone 8 Plus’s glass-and-aluminum shells will take much of a beating.

It’s safe to say that neither the S8 Plus nor the iPhone 8 Plus’s glass-and-aluminum shells will take much of a beating.

The matter is a little clearer when it comes to which phone has the better screen. The Galaxy S8 Plus’s 6.2-inch screen weighs in at a resolution of 2,960 x 1,440 pixels, which bests the iPhone 8 Plus’s 5.5-inch 1,920 x 1,080-pixel screen by a few hundred pixels. Even accounting for the size difference between the two, the Galaxy S8 Plus’s dense pixel arrangement (570 ppi versus the iPhone 8 Plus’s 401 ppi) should result in a much sharper image.

It’s also likely to be a more accurate one. The Galaxy S8 Plus’s screen uses Samsung’s Super AMOLED Plus technology to achieve superior brightness, contrast, black levels, and color accuracy. The iPhone 8 Plus’s Retina screen, on the other hand, is IPS LCD. It’s bright and color-accurate, and it has Apple’s True Tone, which automatically adjusts the screen’s color and intensity depending on ambient lighting conditions. But it can’t match the vibrancy of Samsung’s screen, and it doesn’t support high dynamic range (HDR) standards like HDR10 and Dolby Vision.

It’s a mixed bag when it comes to audio. Unlike the iPhone 8 Plus, the Galaxy S8 Plus has a 3.5mm headphone jack — on the 8 Plus, you have to make do with Lightning-to-3.5mm adapter or Bluetooth earbuds. But the iPhone has a new front-facing stereo speaker setup that’s 25-percent louder than the iPhone 7, which compares pretty favorably to the Galaxy S8 Plus’s single back-firing speaker.

Winner: Galaxy S8 Plus

Battery life and charging

The iPhone 8 Plus and Galaxy S8 Plus will easily get through a full day on a single charge. The Galaxy S8 Plus, though, might last a few hours longer.

Samsung pegs the Galaxy S8 Plus’s talk time at 24 hours, which is just enough to best the iPhone 8 Plus’s rated 21 hours of talk time. It lasts longer on Wi-Fi too — the Galaxy S8 Plus is estimated to last 15 hours on Wi-Fi compared to the iPhone 8 Plus’s 13 hours — and easily bests the iPhone 8 Plus when it comes to video playback. Samsung says the Galaxy S8 Plus can play movies, TV shows, and YouTube videos nonstop for 18, versus the iPhone 8 Plus’s 14 hours.

The Galaxy S8 Plus has less of an advantage when it comes to charging.

The Galaxy S8 Plus has a larger battery to thank. It packs a 3,500mAh battery, which is significantly bigger than the iPhone 8 Plus’s battery. (Apple doesn’t publish battery capacities, but documents on TENAA, China’s electronics regulating body, list the iPhone 8 Plus’s capacity as 2,675mAh.)

The Galaxy S8 Plus has less of an advantage when it comes to charging. Both the S8 Plus and the iPhone 8 Plus support rapid charging, albeit different standards: The Galaxy S8 Plus has Samsung’s Adaptive Fast Charging, which can fully recharge the phone in as little as an hour. Apple says its implementation of fast charging, meanwhile, can recharge the iPhone 50 percent in 30 minutes.

Both phones have wireless charging (a first for the iPhone), and both support the Qi wireless standard. (The Galaxy S8 Plus is also compatible with PMA charging pads and accessories.) The iPhone 8 Plus’s potential dark horse is AirPower, Apple’s tweak on Qi that allows for the charging of multiple devices at one time. But it won’t launch until 2018.

Winner: Galaxy S8 Plus

Cameras

The Galaxy S8 Plus and iPhone 8 Plus have excellent cameras, but there are some important differences.

The iPhone 8 Plus has two 12-megapixel cameras consisting of one wide-angle sensor with an f/1.8 aperture and a telephoto sensor with an f/2.8 aperture. Like the iPhone 7 Plus, the iPhone 8 Plus’s camera can optically zoom up to 4x and has a Quad-LED flash with Apple’s True Tone technology, which automatically adjusts the brightness to compensate for lighting conditions.

The Galaxy S8 Plus, on the other hand, has a single 12-megapixel camera paired with a dual-LED flash and an f/1.7 aperture.

Both the iPhone 8 Plus and Galaxy S8 Plus’s rear cameras are optically stabilized and can shoot in high dynamic range (HDR). And both can replicate the bokeh effect of DSLRs by blurring the background of an image while simultaneously sharpening the foreground.

But the iPhone 8 Plus has a feature that the Galaxy S8 Plus doesn’t: A Portrait Lighting mode that uses color and contour data from the iPhone 8 Plus’s dual rear sensors to relight a scene in real time. That’s in addition to improved pixel processing and color capture, faster autofocus, and noise reduction courtesy of the iPhone 8 Plus’s new image sensor.

The iPhone 8 Plus has a slight leg up on the Galaxy S8 Plus in terms of video, too. It can shoot in 4K at up to 60 fps (frames per second) and in 1080p  (1,920 x 1,080 pixels) at 240 fps, while the Galaxy S8 Plus tops out at 4K at 30 fps and 1080p at 60 fps.

The phones’ front cameras are a bit more comparable. The Galaxy S8 Plus has an 8-megapixel front camera with a f/1.7 aperture and a wide-angle lens, and the iPhone 8 Plus has a 7-megapixel camera with a f/2.2 aperture.

One thing you won’t find on the iPhone 8 Plus’s front is the iPhone X’s sophisticated Face ID sensors. That puts it at a slight disadvantage compared to the S8 Plus, which has iris-scanning sensors on the front that can scan your eyes to lock the phone, log in to apps, and authenticate payments. But in fairness, the scanning process tends to be a little finicky.

Winner: iPhone 8 Plus

Software

The iPhone 8 Plus and Galaxy S8 Plus run very different operating systems.

The version of Apple’s mobile operating system that ships on the iPhone 8 Plus, iOS 11, is notable for a number of reasons. ARKit, a framework for augmented reality-driven experiences, benefits from the A11 Bionic chip. The CPU handles world tracking and keeps the graphics at a steady 60fps, while the iPhone 8 Plus’s dedicated signal processor adjusts for lighting conditions in real time.

There’s plenty new to explore in iOS 11 besides AR Kit. Siri sounds more natural, there’s a new screenshot tool that lets you mark up snapshots with a variety of different stylus styles and fonts, and you can use the iPhone’s keyboard one-handed. And that’s just scratching the surface.

The iPhone 8 Plus doesn’t really have a better operating system than the Galaxy S8 Plus, and vice versa

The Galaxy S8 Plus runs TouchWiz, Samsung’s custom-designed Android interface. Perhaps the highlight is Bixby, a Siri-like digital assistant serves up contextually relevant information, recognizes objects using the Galaxy S8 Plus’s camera, and responds to voice commands. TouchWiz also supports Dex Station, a docking station (sold separately) that transforms Galaxy S8 Plus into a fully functional desktop replacement.

The iPhone 8 Plus doesn’t really have a better operating system than the Galaxy S8 Plus, and vice versa. Unless you’ve already invested in one or the other or have devices that work better with, say, iOS than Android and TouchWiz, it comes down to personal preference.

Winner: Tie

Price and Availability

The iPhone 8 Plus is expensive, but it’s not quite as expensive as the Galaxy S8 Plus.

The iPhone 8 Plus costs $800 and comes in silver, gold, and space grey colors. It’s available for pre-order now, with availability beginning September 22.

The Galaxy S8 Plus, which launched earlier this year, is available from all major carriers, including AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, and Verizon. The 64GB model starts at $850.

iPhone 8 Plus (64GB)
Galaxy S8 Plus (64GB)
Verizon
$33.33 per month for 24 months ($800)
 $35 for 24 months or ($840)
AT&T
$26.67 per month with AT&T Next, $33.34 per month for with AT&T Every Year ($800)
$35.42 for 24 months or $28.34 for 30 months ($850)
T-Mobile
$30 per month for 24 months with a $80 down payment ($800)
 $130 down $30 for 24 months or $0 down and $33 for 24 months ($850)
Sprint
33.34 per month for 24 months ($800)
 $35.42 for 24 months ($850)

Winner: iPhone 8 Plus

Overall winner: iPhone 8 Plus

The iPhone 8 Plus and Galaxy S8 Plus are two innovative, cutting-edge smartphones with high price tags, and comparing the two is a little like comparing apples and oranges. The Galaxy S8 Plus has a big, bright, and beautiful curved AMOLED screen and a long-lasting battery, plus bonuses like a headphone jack and expandable memory. But the iPhone 8 Plus has a much faster processor and a superior camera.

The S8 Plus is a great Samsung phone, but — short of the iPhone X — the iPhone 8 Plus is Apple’s best iPhone yet.




22
Sep

Want to play your tunes on Windows? Here are the best free music players


Although music streaming services may be some of the most popular ways to consume music today, that’s not the case for everyone. For those with their own local collections, you need a decent music player, and sometimes Windows Media Player just doesn’t cut it. Here is our guide to the best free music players for Windows PCs.

This list contains applications for both the hardest of hardcore music lovers, and for listeners that prefer to use something more simplistic.

If you’re an Apple user, don’t feel left out. Even if you’re used to using Spotify or Apple Music, you can bring your local collection back to life with our guide to the best free music players for MacOS.

MusicBee

MusicBee is an excellent pick for those who have huge collections of tunes that need to be organized. It can import your existing iTunes and Windows Media Player libraries, and lets you tag each file as you see fit. The program’s Auto DJ feature lets you sync with Last.fm, and will play similar artists/genres based on what you play. You can also set MusicBee up to organize your favorite podcasts, audiobooks, and radio stations.

With its 10-band to 15-band equalizer options, cross-fade function, and gap-less playback options, audio tweaks are plentiful with MusicBee. It even packs some visual flair in the form of a five-band Spectrum Visualizer that matches up with the tracks you’re playing.  Plug-ins are available for added customization.

The latest sync support between mobile devices is handy, and the ability to change theme colors is an unexpected bonus among other free software choices. MusicBee even supports up to 5.1 surround sound if you have an array of speakers and want the best result possible.

foobar2000

Foobar2000 is a remarkable underdog story. An open source music player project, it has managed to persist for years and remain not only usable, but one of the best free music players for Windows 10 on the scene.

Don’t let the basic interface fool you into thinking this isn’t worth your time. You can customize its look however you want, and play anything from MP3s and WMA to Musepack, Speex, and even rarer formats with the right plugins. There are also extensive tagging abilities, and full support for keyboard shortcuts, which makes Foobar a great piece of software for managing more complex, living lists of audio files.

The program also includes options for gapless playback, ReplayGain, and ripping audio and converting it. Plus, all components and download options are easily available on the site, and the software continues to be updated to this day.

Media Monkey

Media Monkey is similar to MusicBee, and boasts many of the same features. Though it lacks Last.fm synchronization, Media Monkey is compatible with podcasts, audiobooks, and can be set up to download your favorite podcasts for you.

It supports a whopping 100,000 file and playlist types, while also making it easy to tag and organize your files. The software is also pretty smart. It automatically identifies tracks, syncs or fixes tags, and looks up related information, which is all great for getting an old collection of music back in order.

We’re impressed by the playlist tools, which makes them easy to create (or automatically spawn via Auto-DJ). The syncing and recording capabilities are great for amateur musicians as well. When you add the party mode, the visualizer, and the exported audio file reports, it’s hard to see why you would pay for a music manager when Media Monkey exists.

AIMP 4.11

AIMP’s continuous updates have yielded an impressive, clean interface for music lovers who prefer to get down to business. In addition to support for an array of formats (including DirectSound and SIO for output), the software also includes Internet Radio support, a Sound Engine with an 18-band equalizer, and smart playlist capabilities.

Need to convert audio? No problem, AIMP can handle that too, as well as provide editing options for all your audio tags and scheduling options for setting timers or shutdown times if you like mixing music and sleep.

Clementine

Clementine has many familiar features, but it offers quite a bit more connection to the wider world of technology than our other picks.

Sure, you get basic features like smart playlists, internet radio, visualizer, multi-format support, and so on. But you also get more expansive capabilities for cloud and device support. That includes tools that make it easy to copy music onto mobile storage drives, or the ability to search and play songs from the cloud if you’ve stored audio files in Box, Google Drive, Dropbox, and OneDrive. You can even use a Wii Remote, Android device, or other mobile tool as a remote control for the software.

When you add in the connections to MusicBrainz, Last.fm, and Amazon, this is a brilliant solution for those who have a lot of music in the cloud and really don’t want to use iTunes.

Songbird

Songbird adds a welcome social element to music management software. The interface itself is very basic (and in some areas, could use an update), but you get the ability to share photos and discover artists with other fans, a bit like Spotify but with your own audio files included.

An important note here, however. Songbird has not been updated for Windows 10, so while it still works with the OS, there may be an eventual deadline where it just won’t function with the latest software. At the time of writing, we can confirm that the software works well enough in Windows 10, though there’s no guarantee that will be the case in the future.

The good news is that, if for some reason you are stuck with an older version of Windows, this is probably your best music management option

Prefer your music to be a little more portable than the above solutions? Here’s our guide on the best portable MP3 players.

Updated 09/20/2017 by Jon Martindale – updated selection.




22
Sep

Uber suffers a major blow as it loses its London license


Why it matters to you

If you’re in London and ride regularly with Uber, you may soon have to make alternative plans.

In one of the biggest blows to Uber’s business since its founding eight years ago, the ridesharing company has had its application for a new operating license in London rejected.

Regulator Transport for London (TfL) told Uber on Friday that it is “not fit and proper to hold a private hire operator license” and therefore will not grant a replacement when the current one expires at the end of this month. Uber has 21 days to appeal the ruling and can continue serving riders during that time.

Uber says it currently has more than 3.5 million Londoners using its service, and around 40,000 drivers who make a living from it.

In a statement explaining its decision, TfL said its regulation of taxi and private hire businesses aimed to ensure the safety of passengers. But it said Uber’s approach and conduct demonstrated “a lack of corporate responsibility in relation to a number of issues which have potential public safety and security implications.”

These include:

  • Its approach to reporting serious criminal offences
  • Its approach to how medical certificates are obtained
  • Its approach to how Enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) checks are obtained
  • Its approach to explaining the use of Grayball in London, software that could be used to block regulatory bodies from gaining full access to the app and prevent officials from undertaking regulatory or law enforcement duties

Uber’s London operation came under fire in August, 2017 when it was accused of failing to report directly to police a string of serious crimes allegedly committed by its drivers.

Uber: Riders and drivers will be “astounded”

Responding to TfL’s decision, Tom Elvidge, general manager of Uber London, said Uber’s riders and drivers in the capital city would be “astounded by this decision,” one which the company will appeal.

He said the decision to ban the app showed that TfL and the London mayor, Sadiq Khan, had “caved in to a small number of people who want to restrict consumer choice.”

“To defend the livelihoods of all those drivers, and the consumer choice of millions of Londoners who use our app, we intend to immediately challenge this in the courts.”

Elvidge insisted that Uber drivers are licensed by TfL “and have been through the same enhanced DBS background checks as black-cab drivers. Our pioneering technology has gone further to enhance safety with every trip tracked and recorded by GPS. We have always followed TfL rules on reporting serious incidents and have a dedicated team who work closely with the Metropolitan Police. As we have already told TfL, an independent review has found that ‘grayball’ has never been used or considered in the U.K. for the purposes cited by TfL.”

He finished by claiming the ban would “show the world that, far from being open, London is closed to innovative companies who bring choice to consumers.”

London’s mayor comments

London mayor Sadiq Khan said all businesses operating in London “must play by the rules and adhere to the high standards we expect, particularly when it comes to the safety of customers. Providing an innovative service must not be at the expense of customer safety and security.”

Khan added that it would be “wrong if TfL continued to license Uber if there is any way that this could pose a threat to Londoners’ safety and security.”

Signs that Uber’s London operation was coming under increased scrutiny came in May when its license was renewed for just four months instead of the usual five years.

It’s too early to say how Uber riders and drivers in London will react to Friday’s decision, though when TfL proposed limiting Uber’s operations with strict private hire rules in 2015, more than 200,000 people signed a petition in protest. Most of the proposals were subsequently dropped.

Uber has been having a tough time of it lately. Facing mounting criticism over how it conducts its business, it was also rocked by allegations in February of sexual harassment in the workplace. More recently, Uber founder Travis Kalanick was forced to resign by investors concerned about the direction in which the company was heading, and it’s also currently embroiled in a legal battle with Google/Alphabet.




22
Sep

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. 

ChainWise

Choose your favorite restaurants and then quickly find them nearby or in any city. ChainWise is perfect for traveling or just choosing a restaurant near home.

Available on:

iOS

Being. Life

This app is a Progressive Muscle Relaxation (PMR) tool that adjusts to your time schedule. Your new player comes loaded with the app maker’s first title: Life Simply.

Available on:

iOS

Cheerleader

Get the positivity flowing! Procrastination begone. We all need that little boost to get through our day. With Cheerleader, you will have your own cheerful mini promoter.

Available on:

iOS

Universal Doctor Speaker

Universal Doctor Speaker is a multilingual app providing key medical phrases translated across 17 languages, with audios to facilitate communication between patients and healthcare professionals who don’t share a common language.

Available on:

iOS

Blue

Blue provides 36-hour weather forecasts relevant to your location in a fast and fun interface. Swipe up to see each hour represented in a beautiful gradient visual—whether in Fiji, or just at work.

Available on:

iOS

Remote Drive

Turn your iPhone or iPad into the wireless flash drive for your Mac. Have full access to your Mac files – use your iOS device to stream videos, and view photos and documents, from anywhere within your home.

Available on:

iTunesiOS




22
Sep

How to set up the fingerprint sensor on the Galaxy Note 8


note-8-fingerprint-reach.jpg?itok=yLjsvf

After setting it up, you can unlock your phone with a fingerprint.

Fingerprint sensors offer a viable alternative to unlocking your phone with a pattern, or having no security on your phone at all. While the sensor of the Note 8 is a bit peskier for some folks to reach, it can make unlocking your phone easier in a pinch. We’ve got all the details on how to set up and personalize this feature!

  • How to set up the fingerprint sensor on Note 8
  • How to set up the fingerprint sensor so it unlocks your phone
  • How to disable the fingerprint sensor unlock
  • How to add a second fingerprint to the sensor
  • How to remove a fingerprint from your phone

How to set up the fingerprint sensor on Note 8

In order to unlock your phone or confirm purchases using only a fingerprint, you’ll need to set this feature up. Thankfully this is a pretty simple process that ought to only take a minute or two.

Tap the gear icon to open Settings.

Tap Lock screen and security.

note-8-fingerprint-setup1.jpg?itok=Li3MO

Tap Fingerprint scanner.

Follow the instructions to add your fingerprint.

note-8-fingerprint-setup2.jpg?itok=GUYzx

How to set up the fingerprint scanner so it unlocks your phone

One of the biggest perks of adding your fingerprint to your phone, is the ability to unlock your phone using a saved fingerprint. The sensor is in a bit of an awkward spot, but once you’re used to it, this method can save you time in a pinch.

Tap the gear icon to open Settings.

Tap Lock screen and security.

note-8-fingerprint-setup1.jpg?itok=Li3MO

Tap Screen lock type.

Tap the toggle next to fingerprints to turn it on.

note-8-fingerprint-turn-on-unlock.jpg?it

How to disable the finger print sensor unlock

If you decide that you don’t want your phone to be able to be unlocked with a fingerprint, then all you need to do is turn off that feature. All it takes is a tap, and you’ll no longer be able to unlock your phone using the sensor.

Tap the gear icon to open Settings.

Tap Lock screen and security.

note-8-fingerprint-setup2.jpg?itok=GUYzx

Tap Screen lock type.

Tap the toggle next to fingerprints to turn it off.

note-8-fingerprint-scanner-lock-turn-off

How to add a second fingerprint to the sensor

In some cases, you may want to have more than one saved fingerprint. This can be handy if you are ambidextrous or often end up using your Note 8 with both hands at once.

Tap the gear icon to open Settings.

Tap Lock screen and security.

note-8-fingerprint-setup2.jpg?itok=GUYzx

Tap Fingerprint Scanner.
Tap the green plus icon next to Add fingerprint.

Follow the instructions onscreen to add a fingerprint.

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How to remove a fingerprint from your phone.

If you decide that you aren’t really a fan of having your fingerprints stored on your phone, then you can always delete them from within the settings. This means you won’t be able to use the fingerprint sensor anymore though unless you have saved multiple fingerprints to your device.

Tap the gear icon to open Settings.
Tap Lock screen and security.

Tap Fingerprint Scanner.

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Tap Edit.

Tap to choose the fingerprint you want to remove.

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Tap Remove.

Tap Remove again.

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Questions?

Do you have questions about setting up or using the Fingerprint sensor with your Note 8? Is there something we missed that ought to be here? Let us know about it in the comments below!

Samsung Galaxy Note 8

  • Galaxy Note 8 review
  • Complete Galaxy Note 8 specs
  • Galaxy Note 8 vs. Galaxy Note 5
  • Which Note 8 color is best?
  • Join our Galaxy Note 8 forums

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22
Sep

5 reasons to switch away from Sprint


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Having a phone with Sprint isn’t going to work for everyone.

Having phone service that’s cheap and good is important.

Finding the right phone carrier is a pretty big deal. We’re using our phones more than ever, and doing more with them — they’re not just for making calls anymore. And sometimes, finding the right carrier doesn’t happen on the first try. What’s important is that you know it and are ready to move on.

A lot of folks are happy with Sprint, just like a lot of folks are happy with any of the other carriers here in the states. If you’re one of those happy people, that’s awesome. But if you’re not, and you’re thinking the grass might be greener with another company, here are five things to think about and see if it’s time to make a change.

Coverage

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Nothing is more important than coverage, at least when we’re talking about or phones. Having the latest and greatest means nothing if you can’t use it. And Sprint has, erm, issues when it comes to coverage.

Sprint has done a heck of a job with their network and it’s getting a lot better than it was just a couple of years ago. The problem is that it was so bad that big improvements need to keep coming before Sprint can work for a lot of us. It’s not just an issue of not having sufficient cell sites to provide a signal. In places that are covered, it seems like network speeds are poor and inconsistent.

If you live in an area with good Sprint coverage, you know how good it can be. Sprint has upped their game in my neck of the woods, and their network is really strong. But a lot of us don’t live in one of those places, and if you’re on the fringe and frustrated with Sprint, it might be time to make a switch.

Phone selection

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Sprint has gotten some exclusives recently with the HTC Bolt and the Essential Phone, but if you like the idea of unlocked phones that you can use anywhere, Sprint isn’t right for you.

Even phones that could work on Sprint’s network are often unable to because Sprint hasn’t approved them. This is mostly a relic of the past when the network was CDMA-based, but it’s going to be a while before everything is phased out and the network repurposes some of the old spectrum.

Sprint will have the popular models every carrier gets and other than some branding, they will be the same. But if you’re itching to order something crazy from Amazon for your next phone, Sprint isn’t for you and it’s time to switch.

Customer service

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In J.D.Power’s 2017 ratings for wireless carrier’s customer care, Sprint finished at the bottom of the four major carriers in the U.S. and the overall score was below the industry average. It was the same in 2016 and 2015 and 2014 and I’m not going to keep on about this. You get the picture.

When things stop working or the bill isn’t right or you just have a question, your carrier needs to be there to help. I’m sure Sprint does its best and that many are happy with how things are handled when they go wrong. But overall, if you value customer service, you might want to switch carriers.

Network speed

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Coverage may be the most important thing about your carrier, but for some, the network speed is a close second.

This ties in closely with coverage and it’s why we say never depend on a provider’s coverage map. Sprint’s upgraded network locations can be fast. As in, super-flipping-fast. 3X carrier aggregation means a theoretical 200% speed boost and Sprint’s claims of a 240 M/sec or higher average speed aren’t very far off the mark. But only if you’re in one of the markets with carrier aggregation in place, have the right phone, and (most importantly) the network isn’t under any significant load.

If Sprint continues their network upgrade as planned, everywhere with full LTE coverage will have better network speeds. But if you’re tired of waiting you might want to pack up and move on.

Unlimited plans

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Sprint offers excellent unlimited plans. They’re priced low, they have very few restrictions, and the current promotional pricing (ends October 2018) for family plans is far below any other carrier. Sprint wants more customers, and they are offering a great deal on unlimited plans to try and get them.

So why is it listed here? Because they can be enticing and there’s a good chance you’ll regret it all after you’ve signed a lease for 24 months. While this is about reasons to switch from Sprint, it’s also a good place to remind folks to check on things like network reliability and performance before they sign on to any carrier.

Sprint is the right carrier for a lot of people. But if you’re not one of them, the hanging on and waiting for things to get better can be frustrating. Think about your wireless service and decide if it’s time for you to change things around.

5 reasons you should switch away from Verizon

5 reasons you should switch away from AT&T

5 reasons you should switch away from T-Mobile

Alternative carriers (MVNOS)

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  • 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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22
Sep

Three features I’d steal from iOS 11 for the next Android update


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iOS 11 is officially out, and there’s nothing wrong with a little feature envy.

The latest update to iOS is out of beta and rolling out to iPhones as of Tuesday this week, and it’s got our friends over at iMore pretty excited. If you need to catch up on what’s new, you can check out Rene Ritchie’s full review:

  • iOS 11 Review

While it’s all Android, all the time over here, it’s always worth keeping up with what’s going on with iOS. Apple does a lot of things really well and they deserve full credit for that… and if Google can bring some of the more ingenious features over to Android, well, all the better!

Here are a few of the new iOS features that I would love to see ported over to Android.

Augmented Reality baked into the OS

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Since releasing its ARKit for developers back in June, it’s clear that Apple is eyeing Augmented Reality as an important piece in its mobile strategy moving forward as we saw at its latest iPhone launch event. Some highlights from the event included a demo of an AR multiplayer game called The Machines and more practical examples of Augmented Reality such as using your phone to get real-time stats and player information at an MLB game or using a star-gazing app to point out constellations and planets. The aim was to showcase the processing power of the new line of iPhones while also cementing augmented reality as “the next big thing” in the minds of the mainstream public.

Apple’s newfound focus on Augmented Reality and its inclusion as a core feature in iOS 11 should lead to companies and brands incorporating AR features into more apps as the technology reaches mainstream status.

Now I know what you’re probably saying — Google has been dabbling with its own AR platform for Android developers, Tango, for several years now, and even announced their answer to Apple’s software-based ARKit with AR Core in late August. Oh, and then there’s this little game — don’t know if you’ve heard of it — called Pokémon Go that sort of took the world by storm a year ago, so augmented reality on phones isn’t as earth-shattering an idea as Apple would have us think.

Apple focusing on augmented reality should trigger companies and brands to get on the AR bandwagon as it achieves mainstream status.

When Apple’s Phil Schiller took to the stage and said the new iPhones were the first smartphones created for Augmented Reality, he was conveniently ignoring the ASUS ZenFone AR and Lenovo Phab 2 Pro. Of course, it’s hard to blame Schiller for that, as both Tango-ready phones are pretty forgettable — a shame because the experience using Tango is pretty awesome.

But that kind of speaks to the larger issue here. Google’s been working on Augmented Reality via Tango for so long now, yet it still feels like something stuck in beta. The number of Tango-ready phones is embarrassingly small — and Google has yet to release a Tango-ready phone of their own. AR Core shows a ton of promise and eliminates the need to buy a phone with specific hardware for implementing AR features, but there’s still a ton of questions surrounding Google’s future plans for both Tango and AR Core.

Might some of those questions be answered on October 4th? I guess we’ll learn soon enough.

Apple Pay in iMessage

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We’re living in an increasingly cashless society and that trend will only continue to grow as more people start using fantastic mobile payment options such as Apple Pay and Android Pay. Apple first introduced Apple Pay in 2014 with the iOS 8.1, and with iOS 11 they’re implementing new functionality that lets you send Apple Pay money transfers to friends or family right from within iMessage.

Now, this peer-to-peer payment service from within iMessage isn’t rolling out with the official iOS 11 release, but it is coming and it’s a feature that sure looks enticing to those of us on the Android side of the fence. Sure, it’s still incredibly convenient for me to open my banking app and wire my friends some money that I owe them or whatnot, but there’s just something so elegant about responding to a friend’s reminder text that you that you owe them $20, and then immediately sending it to them within the conversation as a reply.

I’d love to be able to send and receive money transfers as easy as a text — but no new messaging apps, Google!

It’s a feature that I’d love to see Google bake into Android, but Google would first need to decide which messaging app to build it into. Allo? Android Messages? Hangouts?

Beyond that, there’s also the issue of phone makers getting on board, too. So many Android phones ship with their own OEM-specific messaging apps set as default, along with popular third-party messaging apps like WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger and more — it’s just that much easier for Apple to implement this feature into iMessage as but another great feature for the benefit of all iOS users.

Just please, Google, for our own sanity, please don’t release another messaging app just for sending money to friends.

Do Not Disturb turns on automatically when you’re driving

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Distracted driving is an issue that, sadly, doesn’t seem to be going away any time soon. With younger generations getting smartphones in their hands before reaching the driving age, it’s all too easy to get into the habit of instinctively checking new notifications as soon as they pop up. Younger drivers can build self-confidence in their ability to multi-task, which may ultimately lead to tragic consequences.

With iOS 11, Apple has introduced a feature that will automatically turn on Do Not Disturb if it detects that you’re in a moving vehicle or if you connect to your car’s Bluetooth. Once enabled, all notifications are turned off, and there’s even an option to automatically notify anyone trying to message you that you’re currently behind the wheel. It can also be toggled manually, too, for the times when you’re a passenger in a car.

This is just a really smart feature that should probably be implemented across all smartphones. Distracted driving is a major public safety issue, and the first step towards correcting it is removing the temptation to check your phone. Here’s hoping iOS users make use of this new feature, and Google adds it to its list of features to include in the next major Android update.

What iOS features would you steal?

These are my top three picks for features I’d like to see Google steal for Android P, but what about you? Let us know in the comments!

22
Sep

Apple only allows streaming, not downloading, of upgraded 4K movies


One of the most pleasant surprises out of last week’s Apple event was the announcement that purchased iTunes movies would be automatically upgraded to 4K for free. Well, it turns out it’s not actually that simple. A support document from Apple tells us that users will not be able to download 4K versions of their upgraded movies from iTunes; Ultra HD is limited to streaming only.

However, some HD files will still include HDR and Dolby Vision. Apple says, “You can download a local copy of an HD movie, and you might be able to download HDR and Dolby Vision versions, but you can’t download a 4K version.” And if your Internet speed isn’t fast enough, the quality of video will be downgraded to what your connection can support.

When you think about space limitations for 4K files, it does make sense. Ultra HD files are pretty big and will take up a lot of space on an iPhone or iPad. Additionally, the Apple TV 4K is the only device that can play these files right now — we’re waiting on further clarification from Apple. But at the same time, some people like downloading their movies and streaming locally, off of a computer, rather than relying on a external Internet connection. There may be some logic behind this decision, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t a frustrating discovery. Still, it’s a free upgrade, so it’s difficult to complain too much.

Via: 9to5Mac, MacRumors

Source: Apple

22
Sep

The Engadget Podcast Ep 43: Hits, misses and leaks


If last week’s episode was overwhelmingly about Apple, this week’s episode includes some partial respite, in the form of another tech titan: Google. For the first half of this episode, senior editor Chris Velazco and I recap his review of the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus, which posted on Tuesday. We also get into the Apple Watch Series 3’s LTE connectivity issues, and reminisce about other Apple product launches that haven’t gone quite as planned. Then, in the second half of the episode we talk about the implications of Google buying HTC’s Pixel team, and finish up by running through everything that’s been leaked about Google’s upcoming hardware announcement. (And my, there have been a lot of leaks.) Enjoy!

Relevant links:

  • iPhone 8 and 8 Plus review
  • Apple Watch 3 struggles to connect to LTE
  • Apple TV 4K hands-on
  • Google is buying HTC’s Pixel team for $1.1 billion
  • Google’s next Chromebook Pixel is reportedly called… the Pixelbook
  • Google’s mini Home speaker and Pixel 2 XL leak ahead of October event

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