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30
Jun

Parrot Anafi drone review



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Parrot Anafi

In many ways, Parrot is to drones what Nintendo is to video games. Despite playing a pioneering role in bringing drones to consumers, Parrot has always leaned a bit more to the playful side of the spectrum, often overshadowed by competitors when it comes to performance and practicality. While DJI and Yuneec were busy making drones with 4K cameras and environmental sensing abilities, Parrot pumped out drones that could do backflips, shoot foam pellets, and get tossed around like frisbees.

The company’s latest drone is a step in a different direction. Anafi, as it’s called, is not only a departure from the company’s dance-themed naming convention (which brought us the Bebop, Swing, Mambo, and Disco drones) but also a triumphant departure from the casual side of the UAV market. This drone was built from the ground up for aerial photography and videography, and after putting it through its paces for the past few weeks, we’re convinced it deserves a spot at the big kids’ table.

Standout features and specs

This is a drone built to travel. Like DJI’s popular Mavic line, Parrot’s Anafi is equipped with hinged arms that fold inward, allowing it to slip inside a pill-shaped carrying case that’s no bigger than a water bottle. It definitely won’t fit in your pocket, but the average backpack or purse should have more than enough room to hold it.

The rest of the drone’s standout features are less obvious to the naked eye, but no less important. Arguably the most notable of these is the camera assembly. Nestled inside a vibration dampened three-axis gimbal, you’ll find a 4K camera capable of shooting HDR video — a feature that allows the drone handle high-contrast scenes more effectively. This camera is also equipped with lossless digital zooming abilities and 180 degrees of tilt freedom. These three features — HDR, zoom, and 180-degree tilt — are all things you simply can’t find on other drones in this price range (at least for now).

The Anafi brings no single game-changing, must-have feature to the table, but it does bring a lot of smaller, fresh ones.

Anafi is also outfitted with a range of smart filming and flight modes. Many of these are standard fare for drones in 2018, like auto-follow, orbit, and waypoint flying. Others, like Dolly Zoom, Hyperlapse, and Slow Motion, are more unique.

Parrot also included a handful of small, thoughtful design elements that help round out the package: a launch-from-hand function, 3D mapping software, a USB-C battery that can also be used as a smartphone charger, and the ability to fly the drone without a controller.

The Anafi brings no single game-changing, must-have feature to the table, but it does bring a lot of smaller, fresh ones. If the Anafi is anything, it’s unique.

Build quality and durability

Building a drone is a delicate dance: Manufacturers have to give the drone strength and sturdiness without making it too heavy — which is easier said than done. Strike the wrong balance, and you end up with a lightweight drone that’s too fragile, or a sturdy drone that’s too hefty. The key is finding a good middle ground.

Rich Shibley/Digital Trends

Historically, Parrot’s drones have leaned a tiny bit toward the fast-n-flimsy side of the spectrum. The Anafi is no different. It’s very well built, but definitely not quite as sturdy as DJI’s Mavic drones. The arms are more flexible and thin in comparison, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Based on our experience with earlier Parrot drones, this flexible design often makes drones very resilient and able to bounce back from crashes. It’s more willow, less oak.

Battery life and recharge time

Parrot equipped the Anafi with a 7.6 volt, 2,700mAh battery lithium-polymer battery, which allegedly provides 25 minutes of flight time on a full charge. That’s what’s printed on the box, but as usual, this spec is based on ideal flight conditions and isn’t necessarily a reflection of real-world performance, so we put it to the test. In a static hover endurance test (in which we send the drone up with a full battery and let it hover in place until it comes down for an automated emergency landing), Anafi managed to stay airborne for just shy of 23 minutes — which is pretty damn good for a drone of this size.

Anafi managed to stay airborne for just shy of 23 minutes — which is pretty damn good for a drone of this size.

Of course, flying around and making full use of the drone’s motors and processors drains the battery a bit faster, but even during our more rigorous flight tests, Anafi still managed to stay skyside for an average of 21 minutes. Compared to other portable drones, that’s pretty great. Yuneec’s Breeze can only manage about 12 minutes on a single battery, while the Hover Camera Passport can only hang for about 10. Even Anafi’s most formidable competitor, the DJI Mavic Air, can only stay aloft for 18 minutes.

When it comes time to recharge, you can expect anywhere from 1.5 to two hours to get from zero to 100 percent. It’s worth noting, however, that charge time is very much dependent on your charging setup. Anafi juices up via a USB-C charging port, which means you can charge your battery practically anywhere – but keep in mind not all USB chargers are created equal. The cheap one you plug into your car’s cigarette lighter puts out less juice than the one that came with your iPad, and charge times will vary accordingly.

Piloting, control, and autonomy

Using the Anafi is a breeze on just about every level — and we’re not just talking about flying. The first thing we were struck by was how simple the pairing process is. With most drones, you have to wait a few minutes for your phone to connect to the drone, and then wait for the drone to connect to all the satellites it uses for positioning. Somehow, this process is nearly instantaneous with Anafi. As soon as you fire up the controller and plug it into your smartphone, you can start flying — and there’s something to be said for that kind of immediacy.

Parrot Anafi Compared To

DJI Mavic Air

Yuneec Breeze

Halo Drone Pro

DJI Inspire 2

DJI Phantom 4 Pro

DJI Mavic Pro

Hover Camera Passport

Propel Star Wars Battle Drones

DJI Spark

Parrot Bebop 2 FPV

3DR Solo Drone

eHang Ghostdrone 2.0

Yuneec Typhoon H drone

Yuneec Typhoon Q500 4K

dji Phantom 2 Vision+

The controls are nice and responsive, but not quite as tight and athletic as DJI’s drones. There’s a tiiiny bit of lag between user input and drone output, which makes the controls feel just a smidge on the slippery side. Let off the sticks, and there’s a brief but noticeable pause between when you relinquish control and when the drone comes to a stop. This certainly isn’t a dealbreaker, and it only takes a minute to adapt to — but it does diminish your confidence as a pilot. We definitely flew more cautiously with this bird as a result.

In terms of autonomy, Anafi performs admirably in most areas. Its automated flight modes all work exactly as advertised, while the automated filming modes produce consistent and reliable results. That said, it’s worth noting that Parrot’s auto-follow technology isn’t quite as robust as what you’ll find on a DJI drone.

We found ourselves longing for obstacle avoidance software while we nervously zipped through the trees.

One thing that’s notably absent on this drone is obstacle avoidance — which now comes standard on many UAVs in this price range. When it comes to environmental sensing, the Anafi is only equipped with a ground sensor, which effectively means it can’t sense and avoid obstructions like tree branches or power lines. Again, this isn’t necessarily a deal breaker, but it does force you to fly a bit more cautiously. We found ourselves longing for obstacle avoidance software while we nervously zipped through the trees at our local park.

Camera and accessories

The Anafi’s camera setup is the star of the show. Pretty much every other feature on the drone is something you can get elsewhere, but Anafi’s shooter is where Parrot packed in all the goodies that differentiate this drone from the rest of the pack.

In terms of raw specs, Anafi boasts a 1/2.4-inch CMOS sensor from Sony, along with a wide-angle f/2.4 ASPH lens. In addition to 21-megapixel still shots, it can shoot video in 1080p FHD at up to 60fps, 4K UHD (3,840 x 2,160) at up to 30fps, or Cinematic 4K (4,096 x 2,160) at 24fps. It’s also equipped with an HDR mode, which essentially just boosts the camera’s contrast and allows you to capture good-looking footage even if the scene you’re shooting contains both bright and dark areas. Parrot has leaned on this feature pretty heavily in its promotional efforts, but in our opinion, HDR isn’t the drone’s most significant feature.

Rich Shibley/Digital Trends

What really won us over with this drone was the camera’s motion capabilities. In addition to lossless zooming, the Anafi’s camera also has 180 degrees of tilt freedom, meaning it can look straight down OR straight up — which makes it really fun and flexible to film with. Having the ability to look up, down and zoom while flying ultimately gives you a greater degree of creative freedom, and allows you to capture shots that you simply can’t get with other drones.

Our Take

This is unquestionably the best drone that Parrot has ever made — but there are a few things holding it back. Most notably, the sluggish controls and lack of obstacle avoidance detract from the flying experience, and ultimately force you to fly more cautiously.

However, Anafi makes up for its control shortcomings with a stellar camera assembly that provides a fun, dynamic, and creatively liberating filming experience. The drone’s zooming and tilting abilities, along with its unique filming modes, make the Anafi a standout in the portable drone category.

Is there a better alternative?

If you value flight performance and reliability more than taking pretty pictures, then you’d be wise to consider DJI’s Mavic drones. They’re more responsive, and are equipped with powerful obstacle avoidance that lets you fly with confidence — so if you’re not the most seasoned drone pilot, we suggest you go with DJI.

If you’re more concerned with image quality and flexible filming options, the Anafi is tough to beat — at least among drones with a portable form factor. The Mavic Air, Yuneec Breeze, and Hover Camera Passport are all solid contenders in the realm of portability, but they fall a bit behind Parrot in the camera department.

All things considered, we do think that DJI’s Mavic Air is an overall better drone than Anafi, but not by a huge margin. It has better flight controls, a solid camera, and is extremely portable — but it also costs $100 more.

How long will it last?

Years. Parrot released the Bebop 2 drone almost three years ago, and it’s still releasing firmware patches and app updates — so there’s no reason to believe it won’t do the same thing with the Anafi. As long as you can avoid catastrophic crashes, this drone should keep on buzzing for years to come.

Should you buy it?

Yes. Despite a few minor shortcomings, the Anafi is a great little drone that’s an absolute riot to play with. You won’t regret this purchase.

30
Jun

Data breach reveals some police departments aren’t prepared for active shooters


The personal information of police officers as well as some of the capabilities — and deficiencies — of local police departments are part of a large data breach affecting the federally funded Advanced Law Enforcement Rapid Response Training facility at Texas State University. ALERRT, as it’s more commonly known, helped trained 114,000 law enforcement officers how to handle active shooter scenarios, and the facility has worked with federal agencies like the FBI.

According to data breach hunter Flash Gordon, the database — which dates back to April 2017 and contains the names and work contact information of law enforcement officers, and agents from the FBI, Customs and Border Protection, and the U.S. Border Patrol — was uploaded to a web server without password protection. The breach also included information about the officers and their home addresses as well as the skills and capabilities of more than 17,000 instructors, according to ZDNet.

The ALERRT data breach also contained a database of more than 85,000 emails containing sensitive personal information, like an officer’s birth date or the last four digits of their Social Security number. “In the wrong hands this data could be detrimental or even deadly for the first responders who put their lives on the line every day,” security researcher John Wethington told ZDNet of the breach.

In addition to revealing personal information from law enforcement officers, the email database also contains insights on how prepared police departments and law enforcement agencies at handling active shooter situations. A few of the email exchanges detailed requests from several police agencies for training from ALERRT. Those agencies revealed that their departments did not have active shooter training and that a nearby agency with that kind of capability may be miles away. Given the large influx of request from local agencies, ALERRT did notify at least one police officer that it “couldn’t facilitate his request at this time,” according to ZDNet.

“This intelligence could be easily exploited by domestic terrorists or ‘lone wolves’ to exploit the weaknesses discussed in this correspondence,” Wethington said in ZDNet’s report. “For instance, an individual who wanted to push a particular state or local agency and the community it supports into a crisis need only look for an agency or community in this data that has expressed concern for their ability to respond to a active shooter.”

The database has since been removed, though it’s unclear if any of the information contained in the breach had been misused or obtained by malicious actors.

Editors’ Recommendations

  • Shooter storms YouTube campus, multiple injuries reported
  • What Is the GDPR? The EU’s Online Privacy Law: Explained
  • As Windows moves beyond the window, it’s going to get even better
  • After the San Bernardino iPhone fiasco, lawmakers introduce the Secure Data Act
  • FBI inflates the number of encrypted smartphones it can’t access, report says



30
Jun

7 Portable High-capacity Power Banks, Including 50,000mAh+ Chargers


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These aren’t your pocket-friendly power banks, but they can be your lifeline when battery life runs short across multiple devices.

Given today’s power-hungry phones and tablets, any power pack under 20,000mAh shouldn’t be considered high-capacity. While the majority of these beefier backup batteries aren’t suited for storing in your pocket, they’re still compact enough to toss in a backpack, suitcase, or laptop bag for a quick charge when you need it. Check out these power banks that provide enough battery to keep up with the most demanding tech-lover.

  • Anker PowerCore+ 26800 Quick Charge PowerCore+ 26800 PD
  • EasyAcc Monster 26,000mAh Power Bank
  • USB-C RAVPower 26,800mAh
  • ZeroLemon ToughJuice V3.0 30,000mAh
  • EcoFlow Tech River 412Wh
  • Kenruipu 24,000mAh
  • Maxoak 50,000mAh

Anker PowerCore+ 26800 Quick Charge / PowerCore+ 26800 PD

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Anker brings two versions of the PowerCore+ 26800 to the market, one with Qualcomm Quick Charge 3.0 and one with USB PD (Power Delivery). Both offer a whopping 26,800mAh capacity and are only 7.1 x 3.1 x .9 inches in size. This is a power bank that you probably can fit into your pocket!

The Quick Charge model also features PowerIQ so that non-Quick Charge devices can still charge at up to 3 amps and can be fully recharged in about 6.5 hours. It’s priced around $70.

The USB PD model features a 30-watt USB-C port capable of charging laptops like a MacBook or Chromebook as well as your phone. It can be fully charged in about four hours and costs right around $120.

See at Amazon (USB PD)

EasyAcc Monster 26,000mAh Power Bank

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If you’re after more than just a pair outputs to keep your phones and tablets charged up, the EasyAcc Monster packs a 26,000mAh capacity and provides four USB ports as well as two Micro-USB inputs on the side that can work in tandem decrease recharge time up to 50%. With a total output of 4.8 amps, the more devices connected means a slower charge, but the overall convenience, functionality, and capacity outweigh reduced charging times.

Next to the USB outputs is a built-in LED flashlight that’s handy for seeing in the dark, and on top are four tiny lights that indicate how much battery life remains in the power bank. EasyAcc has added plenty of safety features to prevent any damage to your connected devices, too. You’ll pay about $47 for the EasyACC Monster.

See at Amazon

RAVPower USB-C 26,800mAh

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The new USB-C RAVPower 26800 can output 30 watts through its USB-C port and has two “regular” USB ports that feature its iSmart technology to charge at up to 2.4 amps each. RAVPower says that its iSmart 2.0 system will automatically sense the correct charging current so that your devices that don’t use a fast-charging standard will still charge as fast as they are able. The USB-C port charges a MacBook at the same rate as the included charger, and can charge a Nintendo Switch while you’re playing.

Using both charging inputs, you can fully charge the RAVPower 26800 in 4.5 hours. The USB-C RAVPower 26800 costs about $80.

See at Amazon

ZeroLemon ToughJuice V3.0 30,000mAh

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This beastly backup battery rocks an impressive 30,000mAh capacity that’s able to provide power to phones, tablets, and even laptops. It has a total of five USB ports three standard 1-amp outputs, one Qualcomm Quick Charge 3.0 output and one USB-C output so it’s compatible with almost everything.

It also features a rubber outer shell that makes the ZeroLemon ToughJuice V3.0 the most rugged power bank you’re likely to see. You’ll pay about $60 for it.

Remember, this power bank is too big to carry on a plane in the U.S. without talking to your airline first.

See at Amazon

EcoFlow Tech River 412Wh

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This behemoth packs a wallop and comes at a steep price (about $600), but it’s your source for power when you wanna go totally off the grid for a while. This is the charging station you need for everything you take with you anywhere. It houses a 412Wh (that’s watt-hour) battery and features 11 independent outputs: 2 AC plugs, 4 USB ports, 2 USB-C ports, 2 DC ports, and a car charger.

It also has a solar panel, so you can take it anywhere and it’ll juice itself up (albeit incredibly slowly). Just note that, despite its AC outlets, the River won’t power a hair dryer or coffee maker (heating elements are no joke!).

That being said, our own Marc Lagace went into the forest and played electric guitar and did a whole bunch of other wild things; read his full review:

  • The EcoFlow Tech River: Portable power wherever you need it: Full review

See at EcoFlow Tech

Kenruipu 24,000mAh

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The name may sound a little funny, but the Amazon reviews don’t lie: this 24,000mAh power bank is great. It features four USB ports, and it has two ports to charge the bank itself: one Micro-USB and one USB-C, so you only need one charger to charge this and your Android phone.

The Kenruipu charger comes with its own AC adapter, comes in black or white, and costs around $31. If you’re looking for a quality budget option, then this is your best bet.

See at Amazon

Maxoak 50,000mAh

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Maxoak’s high-capacity powerbank is portable, but it’s also about the size of a paperback novel. That’s what you get when you cram 50,000mAh into a portable battery bank, and this one should last you days if you’re out and about. Headed out of town on a camping trip for the weekend? You’ll likely be able to keep your phone charged the whole time with this and then some. It should also be able to charge most laptops (not MacBooks) a couple times over, and Maxoak even supplies 14 different power connectors. At about $136, it’s not cheap, but it is a lot of juice.

See at Amazon

A note on air travel: What you need to know

While traveling in the U.S., the Federal Aviation Administration allows you to carry a device (like a power bank) with up to a 100 Wh capacity. You are also able to carry a limit of two spare batteries between 101 Wh and 160 Wh with prior approval from your airline. All lithium batteries must be in your carry-on bag and can’t be stowed with checked luggage.

Most power banks list their capacity in mAh (milliamp-hours) and not Wh (watt-hours). Let’s do some conversion using a 3.7-volt average. You can calculate from Wh to mAh using this formula:

(mAh)/1000 x (V) = (Wh)

After some rounding off, that means you can bring a 26,800 mAh power bank on your flight. With approval, you can bring up to two 43,240 mAh (again, some rounding is used) along as well. Just be sure not to put them in your checked luggage!

Other countries may have different regulations, so you should check before you travel outside the U.S.

Updated June 2018: These are still the best high-capacity power banks to keep you juiced up on the go.

30
Jun

Amazon’s portable Tap speaker with Alexa built-in has dropped to $85


No summer adventure is complete without some good music.

The Amazon Tap Alexa-enabled portable Bluetooth speaker is down to $84.99 on Amazon. This the first price drop we’ve seen since last year. While not great as great as some of the deals we saw over Black Friday, it’s been a while since the Tap has moved from its $130 price at all.

amazon-tap-7oin.jpg?itok=tniUjIYuUnlike other Amazon devices, like the Echo Dot, the Tap isn’t chained to an outlet. It has a rechargeable battery that lasts up to nine hours (or eight if you choose the hands-free mode). It does have Alexa built-in and, thanks to that hands-free update, she will respond to your voice from anywhere. Take the Tap to the backyard or the garage and stream your favorite music, then put it back in the kitchen so Alexa can help you cook. Beyond just the portability, the Tap also has the best speakers of Amazon’s first generation of devices. Stream your music via Bluetooth for Dolby-powered 360-degree audio.

The Tap has 4.1 stars based on 7,660 user reviews.

See at Amazon

30
Jun

Build-your-own computer kits, Amazon devices, meat thermometers, and more are all discounted today


Whether you’re looking for new tech gear or household items, we’ve got you covered.

We found plenty of great deals today that include big discounts on Piper’s computer kit, the Amazon Tap and Amazon Echo, the iGrill 2 meat thermometer, and more! Time’s running out to take advantage of these prices, so hurry!

View the rest of the deals

If you want to know about the deals as soon as they are happening, you’ll want to follow Thrifter on Twitter, and sign up for the newsletter, because missing out on a great deal stinks!

30
Jun

Chrome OS is finally getting a proper video editor with Adobe Project Rush


You’ll also be able to run it on flagship Android phones.

Even though Chrome OS’s app situation has gotten considerably better over the years, there’s one thing that often keeps a lot of people at bay — the lack of a real video editor. Thanks to a recent announcement from Adobe, however, that’s going to change very soon.

During this year’s VidCon, Adobe unveiled Project Rush. Project Rush is a new video editing platform that combines features from After Effects, Premier, and Audition into one single app. All of your work is saved on the cloud, meaning if you start a project using Rush on one machine, you can quickly pick up where you left off on another.

In addition to the expected Windows and macOS apps, Adobe Rush will also be available for Android and iOS. Ant Pruitt from Tech Republic talked with Adobe about how the Android app will work, and what he learned is where this gets really exciting —

Adobe assured me that the flagship devices will not have an issue running Project Rush. This includes the likes of your Google Pixel and Samsung Galaxy phones. Forde said that Google and Adobe have worked so closely together on this project, Google now has measures in place that will change how GPU performance will be on Android (for the better) to allow content creation and consumption to be an amazing experience. So amazing, even Chromebooks capable of running Android apps will be able to easily utilize Project Rush.

You can sign up for the Adobe Project Rush beta right now, and while there’s still no word on an official launch or how much Rush will cost, the fact that a real, fully-fledged video editor will be available to use on Chrome OS is huge.

Add that together with the fact that Rush will work just as well with all of your other devices, and content creators are about to be in for a big treat.

Pixelbook 2: What Google can do to make the best Chromebook even better

30
Jun

Get patriotic this Fourth of July with our quickest home screen theme yet


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This theme is quite fitting for our country: it looks complicated, awesome and time-consuming, but it’s really quite easy.

The Fourth of July is a day to celebrate our union, to acknowledge its past and look ahead to its future. It’s also an excuse for everyone to take a day off work in the middle of the summer, go swimming by the river, grilling in the backyard, drink some star-spangled beer and blow up some fireworks. Whatever your plans for this Independence Day, make sure that your phone is decked out in some red, white, and blue brilliance with our quickest theme yet, built upon American adaptability and KLWP.

  • About KLWP and our July 4th theme
  • Applying the July 4th Preset in KLWP
  • Adjusting the July 4th Preset in KLWP
  • Applying Whicons Icon Pack

About KLWP and our July 4th theme

KLWP — short for Kustom Live Wallpaper — is the bigger, bolder brother of KWGT, the what-you-see-is-what-you-get widget builder that we’ve used in many of our theme the last few years, including our recent Heart Canada and Deadpool themes. KLWP is a what-you-see-is-what-you-get live wallpaper builder, allowing you to build widgets, shortcuts, and designs right into your live wallpaper.

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See the 5 white app icons on the screen? Everything besides those is part of our live wallpaper, and that means that since we’ve already built the theme, all you lucky users need to do is apply the live wallpaper, apply your icon pack, and get on with grilling and chilling.

This theme was originally based around a widget I found and liked in Element for KWGT, which is a wonderful preset pack I recommend checking out for KWGT. I hunted down the fonts and fonticon pack to help re-create the dock in KLWP and then made several edits and additions, including:

  • Converted the three app shortcuts into music controls
  • Added song information to the bottom of the dock, just above the nav bar
  • Organized the Time/Weather elements to help them remain better aligned
  • Tied all the theme elements to Globals for easy color adjustments
  • Created and adjusted a custom tricolor music progress bar to sit sit along the edge of the dock
  • Added a conditional layer to hide the interactive elements while on the lock screen

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This is a theme I’ve tinkered and toyed with for over a month, and a KLWP Preset that I’ve adjusted and fine-tuned through weeks of personal use. Since you’ll be importing the KLWP Preset I’ve made, you’ll need KLWP Pro, which is $4.50. Considering how powerful KLWP is and how responsive its development team and community are, I think it’s more than worth that price.

The only elements you’ll need besides KLWP and KLWP’s Pro Key are our July 4th Preset, the free Whicons Icon Pack, and a home screen launcher that supports custom icon packs. I’m using Nova Launcher so that I can take advantage of subgrid positioning and lay out my apps in an angle that matches the theme.

Applying the July 4th Preset in KLWP

Once you download the July 4th Preset, use a file manager app to copy it to Internal Memory/Kustom/wallpapers. If you haven’t opened Kustom before, you might have to make the Kustom folder or wallpapers subfolder. Once the preset file is saved in Kustom/wallpapers, let’s get it imported.

Open KLWP.
Tap the next arrow three times.

Tap Allow to let Kustom access your device’s storage.

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Tap the next arrow.
Tap Allow to let Kustom access your device’s location.

Tap Done.

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A welcome message will appear.After reading it, tap Done.
Tap Load Preset.

In the Presets menu, tap the Exported tab.

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Tap July 4th Preset.
The preset will load, but Kustom is still missing some important permissions for our theme. Tap Fix now.

Tap Fix.

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Tap Kustom LWP or Kustom Notifications.
Tap Allow.

Tap the back button.

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Tap the floppy disc icon in the top right bar of the screen to Save the wallpaper.
We still need to set KLWP as our wallpaper. Tap Fix.

Tap Set Wallpaper.

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Tap Home screen and lock screen.
Tap the floppy disc icon in the top right bar of the screen to Save the wallpaper.

Tap the home button to see the applied theme in action.

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The theme should adapt well to most home screen sizes since most the element groups are anchored and organized from the bottom of the screen.

Adjusting the July 4th Preset in KLWP

Ideally, the only thing left you’ll need to do is set the icon pack, but if you need to adjust the theme, here are some ways you can do that.

  • Is the dock not fitting the width of your screen properly? Tap Layer and adjust the Scale up to down to your liking. Be advised that not all elements adjust at the same rate, so you may need to readjust individual elements after doing this.
  • Want to re-position the sections of the dock to better fit your screen? Tap the Item group or element you wish to move (for instance the Progress Bar), and then tap Position. Adjust the X and Y offsets or directional padding to re-position the element as desired.
  • You can change what tapping an individual element or group triggers. For the base Preset, tapping the Hour opens the Kustom editor so you can adjust the wallpaper to your liking, but you could change it to open your clock or calendar app.

    july-fourth-adjust-kwgt-1.png?itok=qwr1qjuly-fourth-adjust-kwgt-2.png?itok=pGgNbjuly-fourth-adjust-kwgt-3.png?itok=E612E

  • Weather providers offer different descriptions of current weather conditions and some providers are more accurate in different regions than others. To change the weather provider KLWP uses, tap the three-line menu icon in the top left corner of the screen and tap Settings. Under Weather, you can tap Weather Provider and select from half a dozen sources.
  • KLWP by default will pull in the details and controls for any media notification that it sees. If you only want KLWP to pull in data from one app, you can enter KLWP Settings and set Preferred Music Player to your chosen music app.

    july-fourth-adjust-kwgt-4.png?itok=dUrlWjuly-fourth-adjust-kwgt-5.png?itok=tzy-sjuly-fourth-adjust-kwgt-6.jpg?itok=Ly7gp

There are plenty of ways to edit and alter this theme. For instance, here in Texas, the weather is horribly hot and sunny all the time, so I’ve switched the weather fonticon out for a Google Keep icon and shortcut.

Because, really, knowing how hot it is outside during the Fourth of July barbeque doesn’t help us endure it any better; it only makes us more aware of our misery.

Applying Whicons Icon Pack

This is a simple red, white and blue theme, and it works best with a simple white icon pack, and for a simple white icon pack, we turn once again to one of my favorite icon packs on Google Play. Whicons is one of the three free icon packs from Randle that mesh with so many themes that it’s just unnatural.

Open Whicons.
Tap the three-line menu icon in the top left corner.

Tap Apply.

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Tap your desired launcher.

Tap OK.

july-fourth-apply-icons-4.jpg?itok=sCf9ojuly-fourth-apply-icons-5.jpg?itok=DsN09july-fourth-apply-icons-6.jpg?itok=LvkHK

I arrange my apps on the home screen using Nova Launcher’s subgrid positioning, but you can place your icons anywhere above our patriotic dock.

Your turn

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So, do put fifty icons on your home screen for the 50 stars — assuming your home screen is big enough for that many — or do you take a more reserved approach to our Fourth of July theme? Want to kick it up a little more? Try this Captain America variant I made using The First Avenger’s colors and signature shield for some Star-Spangled Awesome.

Are there any themes you’d like us to tackle? Let us know in the comments!

30
Jun

These U.S. carriers have updated the LG G6 to Android Oreo


Where are ya, T-Mobile?

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The LG G6 was one of 2017’s most underappreciated phones, but despite its lacking popularity, it’s still important that LG updates the phone on a timely manner for those that did throw their cash down for it.

A lot of carriers in the U.S. have recently updated the LG G6 to Android 8.0 Oreo, and to help you keep track of which companies have committed to the update, here’s the list as it currently stands.

AT&T

According to numerous reports over on Reddit, the LG G6 on AT&T is being updated to Oreo. AT&T’s website isn’t updated to reflect these changes at the time of publication, but that should be fixed soon.

The update increases the G6’s security patch to April 2018 and has all of the Oreo features you’d expect — such as picture-in-picture, notification dots next to app icons, Google’s handy Autofill API, and more.

Sprint

If you purchased the LG G6 on Sprint, you’re also in luck!

Android 8.0 Oreo started rolling out to the Sprint G6 in late May, and it weighs in at a hefty 1808.5MB.

Interestingly enough, the G6 on Sprint gets a more recent security patch with an update to the May 2018 one.

Verizon

Verizon was actually the first carrier in the United States to start updating the G6 to Oreo.

Verizon’s update measures in at 1893.0MB, and like the Sprint variant, comes with the older April 2018 security patch.

T-Mobile

Lastly, T-Mobile started issuing its Oreo update to the LG G6 on June 29.

The build number is changed to H87220a and all of the regular Oreo goodies are included.

Unlocked LG G6 finally gets Android 8.0 Oreo update

LG G6

  • LG G6 review!
  • LG G6 specs
  • LG G6 vs. Google Pixel: The two best cameras right now
  • Everything you need to know about the G6’s cameras
  • LG forums

Verizon
Sprint
T-Mobile
AT&T
B&H

Android Oreo

  • Android Oreo review!
  • Everything new in Android Oreo
  • How to get Android Oreo on your Pixel or Nexus
  • Oreo will make you love notifications again
  • Will my phone get Android Oreo?
  • Join the Discussion

Updated June 29, 2018: Added T-Mobile to the list!

30
Jun

MacRumors Giveaway: Win a Cord-Cutting Bundle With Lifetime Plex Pass, TV Tuner and Antenna From Plex


For this week’s giveaway, we’ve teamed up with Plex to offer MacRumors readers a chance to win a cord-cutting bundle that includes a lifetime Plex Pass, a TV tuner, and an antenna.

Plex, for those unfamiliar with it, is an all-in-one media hub that organizes your entire library of content, from TV shows and movies to music and photos, plus it offers free access to news, support for Podcasts, and, most importantly for those who want to cut ties with cable companies, access to live television.

To handle all of your own media content, you can set up the Plex Media Server on a Mac, which makes everything you own accessible on all of your devices through the Plex iOS and Apple TV apps, along with Plex apps for consoles, Android devices, and other set-top boxes. You can watch and stream all of your content along with live TV content, news, and more from your Mac to any device, anywhere.


Accessing the Plex Live TV service does not require a cable subscription, and it’s relatively simple to set up if you know what to buy.

You’ll need a digital tuner and a digital antenna to access HD content from channels that are available for free over-the-air, such as major U.S. networks like ABC, NBC, FOX, CBS, the CW, and local programming that includes news and sports. You can enter your zip code on the Plex site to see the channels you can receive over the air in your area.

Plex’s website also outlines the exact equipment that is compatible with Plex Live TV, and a tuner will run you about $50 to $150. For our giveaway, Plex is providing a Mac-compatible HD HomeRun Connect Quatro, which lets you watch live TV on up to four devices simultaneously.


TV tuners need to be paired with an antenna, priced right around $60. Our giveaway includes the ClearStream Flex Amplified Sure Grip Indoor HDTV Antenna, which can be stuck on any flat surface like a window or a wall to receive over-the-air television signals.

All in all, the setup will run you $100 to $200, but after that, you have the tools you need to get cable channels sans paying an exorbitant fee. You will need a Plex Pass subscription for Live TV access, priced at $5 per month, $40 per year, or $120 for a lifetime subscription, but that’s cheaper than cable.

That price offers access to all of Plex’s premium features, including live TV and the ability to pause and record shows and skip commercials with Plex DVR. All of your DVR content will sync seamlessly with your existing media library, and it can also be played anywhere.

Plex also just recently announced a new live TV grid view, which makes it easier than ever to see what’s on and what’s available to you, and it’s simple to schedule your DVR recordings using either an Apple TV or an iOS device.


We have one cord-cutting bundle to give away, complete with Mac-compatible tuner and antenna plus a lifetime Plex Pass subscription. To enter to win, use the Rafflecopter widget below and enter an email address. Email addresses will be used solely for contact purposes to reach the winners and send the prizes. You can earn additional entries by subscribing to our weekly newsletter, subscribing to our YouTube channel, following us on Twitter, or visiting the MacRumors Facebook page.

Due to the complexities of international laws regarding giveaways, only U.S. residents who are 18 years or older and Canadian residents (excluding Quebec) who have reached the age of majority in their province or territory are eligible to enter. To offer feedback or get more information on the giveaway restrictions, please refer to our Site Feedback section, as that is where discussion of the rules will be redirected.

a Rafflecopter giveawayThe contest will run from today (June 29) at 11:00 a.m. Pacific Time through 11:00 a.m. Pacific Time on July 6. The winner will be chosen randomly on July 6 and will be contacted by email. The winner will have 48 hours to respond and provide a shipping address before a new winner is chosen.

Tags: Plex, giveaway
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30
Jun

Microsoft Developing Dual-Screen ‘Pocketable’ Surface Device


Microsoft is working on a pocket-sized dual-screen Surface device according to information sourced from Microsoft internal documents and shared by The Verge.

Called Andromeda, Microsoft’s dual-screen Surface project has been in development for at least two years and it’s designed to “blur the lines between mobile and stationary computing,” according to an internal document.

Andromeda rendering via David Breyer

“It’s a new pocketable Surface device form factor that brings together innovative new hardware and software experiences to create a truly personal and versatile computing experience,” is exactly how Microsoft describes the device internally.

Microsoft’s device will feature a wraparound display that bridges the gap of the hinge when it is fully opened, and according to The Verge, December renderings shared by David Breyer are “identical” to the current prototype versions of the upcoming Surface. The pocketable Surface can be folded in either direction or laid flat, as can be seen in the renderings.

Andromeda rendering via David Breyer
Microsoft is said to be experimenting with stylus input for the pocket Surface, with prototype devices equipped with styluses and notepad-like apps for note taking.

The Verge’s sources warn that work on Andromeda could be ceased at anytime, but Microsoft is said to have tentative 2018 release date plans, which would mean development on the device is nearing completion.

Some nebulous rumors have suggested Apple too is exploring some similar concepts, working with LG to develop an iPhone with a foldable display. Apple explores many concepts and designs for its devices, so there is likely to be some truth to the rumor.

The folding display technology being developed by LG is still a few years off, so if Apple moves forward with some sort of design that’s similar to what Microsoft is working on, we won’t be seeing it for several years.

At the current time, Apple is focusing on edge-to-edge displays and making a transition to OLED technology. In fall 2018, Apple is expected to introduce a second-generation 5.8-inch OLED iPhone X, a 6.5-inch OLED device that can be thought of as an “iPhone X Plus,” and a 6.1-inch iPhone with an LCD display that will be available at a more affordable price point.

All three devices will feature edge-to-edge displays and no Home button, instead adopting Face ID and the TrueDepth camera system.

Tags: Microsoft, Microsoft Surface
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