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How to Use Screen Time in iOS 12

Apple in iOS 12 introduced Screen Time, which is designed to provide you with information on how you’re using your time on your iPhone and iPad.

With Screen Time, you can see how often you pick up your iOS device, which apps you’re using, which apps are sending the most notifications, and other details.

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Accessing Screen Time

There’s no dedicated app for Screen Time, so it might not be immediately obvious how it’s accessed when you first install iOS 12. All Screen Time features are actually available in the Settings app.

Open up the Settings app.
Scroll down to the “Screen Time” section that’s grouped with Notifications, Sounds, and Do Not Disturb.
Tap on “Screen Time” to see your usage statistics.

Screen Time Syncing

Screen Time statistics are collected from all iOS devices running iOS 12 where you’re logged in with your iCloud account. That means it will aggregate data from all iPhones and iPads that you use during the course of a day.

You can view your data across all devices or on a per device basis. To view other devices, tap on the “All Devices” label on the main Screen Time screen and then choose “Devices” from the upper right hand corner.

Info Available in Screen Time

When you open up Screen Time, a chart is displayed with information on your last 24 hours of iPhone usage, organized by each individual app or which app category you’ve used the most, such as Productivity, Games, Creativity, or Messages.

If you tap on that chart, you can see even more information from either the last 24 hours or the last 7 days, including your longest usage setting, the number of times you picked up your device during the day, and how many notifications you got, along with details on which apps are sending you the most notifications.

Other Screen Time Features

In the Screen Time section, you can set scheduled Downtime for yourself to restrict yourself (or a child) from using apps outside of those that have been allowed with App Limits, you can set specific time limits on app categories like social networking or games, and you can access Content & Privacy Restrictions, useful if you’re managing a child’s device.

If you use Family Sharing with a spouse, friend, or child, and you’re the family manager, you’ll also see family members’ names listed under “Family” and will be able to see and control their app usage.

These features are relatively simple to use, but we’ll be looking into them in more depth in future how tos.

Disabling Screen Time

If you don’t want to use Screen Time, you can turn it off in the Settings app.

Open the Settings app.
Tap “Screen Time.”
Scroll down to “Turn Off Screen Time” and tap it.
Turning off Screen Time on your device will delete all app, website, and notification history. You can re-enable Screen Time at any time, but it does not save data nor does it begin collecting data until enabled.

Related Roundup: iOS 12
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HomePod Holds Estimated 70% Share of Growing $200+ Smart Speaker Market

While the HomePod did not rank among the top five smart speakers in worldwide shipments last quarter, it is dominating the premium end of the market, according to research firm Strategy Analytics.

Strategy Analytics claims the HomePod accounts for 70 percent of the small but growing $200-plus smart speaker market, topping competing products such as the Google Home Max and a variety of Sonos speakers. They say Apple also captured a leading 16 percent of revenue in the entire smart speaker market.

Among smart speakers of any price, the HomePod accounted for just six percent of the market, as Strategy Analytics estimated last month. If accurate, the data shouldn’t come as much of a surprise, as the top five best-selling smart speakers are all regularly priced between $49 and $129 in the United States.

The world’s most-shipped smart speakers last quarter were the Google Home Mini, Amazon Echo Dot, Amazon Echo, Chinese company Alibaba’s Tmall Genie, and the Google Home, according to Strategy Analytics. As always, it’s important to remember that shipments don’t necessarily reflect sales to customers.

By comparison, the HomePod is priced at $349 in the United States, although rumors have suggested Apple has considered releasing a lower-priced version, possibly in the form of a Siri-enabled Beats speaker.

David Watkins, Director of Strategy Analytics’ Smart Speaker Service:

Unsurprisingly, Amazon and Google models dominated the best-selling list of smart speakers in Q2 2018. The Google Home Mini and Amazon Echo Dot accounted for a combined 38% of global shipments although they contributed just 17% towards the value of the market due to their low price.

Apple on the other hand has focused its smart speaker efforts at the premium end of the market, promoting the HomePod’s audio prowess ahead of the device’s voice control capabilities.

As noted by Watkins, Apple has marketed the HomePod’s premium audio quality more than its Siri capabilities, as justification for its $349 price. Reviews do agree it sounds a lot better than offerings from Google and Amazon.

All in all, the smart speaker market is shaping up to be a lot like other product categories Apple operates in. Apple dominates the premium end of the smartphone market with the iPhone, for example, whereas Samsung and many other Android smartphone makers offer a variety of devices at a wide range of price points.

Related Roundup: HomePodTag: Strategy AnalyticsBuyer’s Guide: HomePod (Buy Now)
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How to Create and Use Memoji in iOS 12

In iOS 11, Apple introduced animated emoji characters called Animoji, which are designed to mimic your facial expressions. In iOS 12, Animoji have grown to encompass Memoji, which are customizable humanoid Animoji characters that you can design to look just like you.

Memoji can do all of the same things that Animoji can, mimicking your facial expressions to allow for cute videos, photos, and interactions with friends and family. In iOS 12, you can also use Memoji and Animoji in photos through the Messages camera and in live FaceTime chats.

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Making a Memoji

Animoji live in the Messages app, so creating a Memoji is also done in Messages.

Open up the Messages app.
Choose a conversation.
Tap on Animoji Messages app from the Messages app bar, which looks like a little monkey.
Scroll all the way to the right until you see the “+” button and tap it.

Customizing Your Memoji

Memoji start out as a blank face, and it’s up to you to customize it to look like you. The Memoji interface will open up to a display that lets you choose skin tone to begin with. Tapping buttons and sliders will let you customize features and choose options like freckles or no freckles.

To move on from skin tone to other features, tap the labels at the top, cycling through Hairstyle, Head Shape, Eyes, Brows, Nose & Lips, Ears, Facial Hair, Eyewear, and Headwear.

During this entire process, your Memoji is active so you can see what all of the features look like when animated. Sometimes it will pause when changing a feature, but you can resume the animation by tapping on the Memoji.

There are dozens of facial feature options and accessories to choose from when creating a Memoji, allowing for many different looks.

When your Memoji is all finished, just tap “Done” in the upper right hand corner.

You can save as many Memoji as you want, so you can make Memoji for yourself, your friends, family, celebrities, characters, and more.

Editing and Deleting Memoji

You can edit an already-created Memoji or delete a Memoji at any time.

Open up the Messages app.
Choose a conversation.
Tap on the little monkey icon in the Messages app drawer to open up the Animoji Messages app.
With a Memoji in frame, tap on the three little dots in the left hand corner.
Choose “Edit” to make changes to your Memoji, choose “Delete” to remove it, or choose “Duplicate” to use it as a base for a new Memoji.

New Animoji Features in iOS 12

In iOS 12, new facial recognition capabilities have been added that let your Animoji and Memoji mimic both your tongue sticking out and winks. All Animoji and Memoji have tongues, with some special touches like a glitter tongue for the unicorn, a green tongue for the alien, and an articulated tongue for the robot.

Recording a Memoji or Animoji Video in the Messages App

Recording a message, song, or facial expression in a video that can be sent to family and friends is done in the same way that it was done in iOS 11.

With the Animoji app open in Messages and an Animoji or Memoji selected, tap on the red record button to start recording a message. When finished, tap the red stop button, and then tap the blue up arrow to send.

Tapping on the arrow sends the Animoji or Memoji recording automatically to the person you’re conversing with.

Using a Memoji or Animoji as a Sticker

Your Memoji and Animoji can also be used as stickers if you just want to send a quick photo reaction but not a full video. To do this, make the desired face and then tap on the Animoji itself rather than the record button to create a quick little screenshot that can be sent using the blue up arrow.

If you want to use the Animoji or Memoji as a sticker to react to another message or to decorate a photo, press a finger on the Animoji and then drag it upwards into the iMessage conversation.

While the sticker is attached to your finger, you can use gestures to rotate it and resize it to get the perfect position.

Animoji in the Messages Camera and in FaceTime

iOS 12 includes a new Effects camera in both Messages and FaceTime, which includes support for Animoji and Memoji. You can use Animoji and Memoji to create photos in Messages and to entertain friends and family while in FaceTime conversations.

Animoji in the Messages Camera

Open the Messages app.
Choose a conversation.
Tap on the Camera icon that’s next to the iMessage chat bar.
Tap on the star-shaped icon in the bottom left corner.
Select the Animoji icon, which looks like a little monkey.
Choose an Animoji or Memoji and it will pop up over your face.
After applying an Animoji, tap the small “X” in above the Animoji menu to exit out of the Animoji interface. Your Animoji will still be displayed, but you will also be able to add other camera effects.
When all of your desired effects are applied, tap the photo button to snap a photo that can then be edited, marked up further, or shared.
With the Messages camera, you can add Animoji, filters, text, shapes, and stickers to your images.

Animoji in FaceTime

Initiate a FaceTime call.
After the call has started, tap on the star-shaped Effects icon.
Choose an Animoji or Memoji, tap it, and it will be displayed over your face.

As in the Messages Effects camera, tap on the “X” above the Animoji menu and you can also apply other effects while in the FaceTime call.
The person on the other end of the FaceTime call will see the Animoji and any other effects that you have applied, such as filters. You can complement your Animoji FaceTime calls with the aforementioned filters, stickers, text, and all of the other Effects camera options.

Animoji and Memoji only work with the front-facing camera in both Messages and FaceTime, because the TrueDepth camera system is required.

Memoji and Animoji Compatibility

You need a device with a TrueDepth camera system to create Memoji and Animoji, which includes the iPhone X, iPhone XS, and iPhone XS Max. Later, that will also encompass the iPhone XR and upcoming iPad Pro models that are expected to adopt TrueDepth camera systems.

While it’s just the iPhone X, XS, and XS Max that can be used to create and display Animoji, others can still see them in FaceTime calls (including Group FaceTime calls) and in photos created with the Messages camera.

Related Roundup: iOS 12Tags: Animoji, Memoji
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HomePod Guide: How to Create Multiple Timers, Search for Lyrics, Find Your iPhone, and Make Calls

Apple’s HomePod was updated this week to version 12, which debuted alongside iOS 12 for iPhones and iPads. The HomePod update brings about a handful of new abilities for Apple’s smart speaker, including support for multiple timers, lyric search, find my iPhone, making and receiving phone calls, and more.

Because of all the useful and handy new additions arriving on HomePod this week, we’ve written this guide to provide quick steps that can help you figure out each new feature, and added in some tips as well.

Multiple Timers

On previous HomePod software you could only make one timer and not name it, but with the new software Apple is letting you create and name as many as over 20 timers at once (our testing reached about 23). This should greatly help out HomePod owners, especially those who have placed the speaker in their kitchen.

Note: Because HomePod relies entirely on voice controls for timers (and other features in this guide), there may be other sentence patterns that result in the same responses as the ones we’ve discovered. With that being said, below you’ll find a few examples of Siri commands for multiple timers on HomePod. To create multiple timers, simply begin listing one timer after the other to Siri:

Setting Timers

  • “Hey Siri, set a 15 minute timer for food.”
  • “Hey Siri, set a burger timer for 20 minutes.”
  • “Hey Siri, set a 25 minute french fries timer.”
  • “Hey Siri, set a 45 minute timer for the laundry.”
  • “Hey Siri, set a 3 hour timer for the sprinklers.”

Checking Individual Timers

  • “Hey Siri, what’s left on the food timer?”
  • “Hey Siri, how’s the french fries timer?”
  • “Hey Siri, what’s the sprinklers timer at?”
  • “Hey Siri, how long until the laundry is done?”
  • “Hey Siri, is the burger timer almost done?”

Checking All Timers

  • “Hey Siri, where are the timers at?”
  • “Hey Siri, how much time is left?”
  • “Hey Siri, list the timers.”

The limit of any timer is a maximum of 23 hours (as it was previously). If you create a timer but don’t give it a name, Siri will name the timer by its original length, saying something like “There is 1 minute left on the 10 minute timer.”

When you have multiple timers running and one ends, the usual timer ending chime will sound, but it will now be interspersed with Siri stating which timer is completed. As usual, you can tap the top of HomePod to silence the timer, or ask Siri to shut it off. If you have numerous timers running simultaneously and want to end them all, you can say “Hey Siri, stop/cancel all of the timers.”

Lyric Search

Similar to Apple Music on iOS, you can now search for a song through its lyrics using Siri on HomePod. Try out these commands to start using voice-enabled lyric search:

  • “Hey Siri, search for a song with the lyrics [lyrics].”
  • “Hey Siri, play the song with the lyrics [lyrics].”
  • “Hey Siri, search for the song that goes [lyrics].”
  • “Hey Siri, play the song that goes [lyrics].”

If you just want to perform a search for a song based on its lyrics without playing it, you can say something like “Hey Siri, what song has the lyrics [lyrics]?”

Find My iPhone

If you’ve lost track of your iPhone but know it’s somewhere nearby, HomePod can now send out a helpful ping so you can more easily locate your misplaced iPhone. Try these commands to get started:

  • “Hey Siri, find my iPhone.”
  • “Hey Siri, find [iPhone name].”
  • “Hey Siri, where’s my iPhone?”
  • “Hey Siri, ping my iPhone.”
  • “Hey Siri, can you find my iPhone?”
  • “Hey Siri, is my iPhone nearby?”
  • “Hey Siri, I can’t find my iPhone.”

Siri will respond to each one of these commands by asking “Should I try to make it play a sound?”, to which you’ll need to reply yes or no.

This feature extends to any iOS or macOS device connected to your Apple ID, so you can also search for a missing iPad or MacBook, as long as they’re all connected to the internet at the time of the search.

You can provide the specific name of each device to ping, but Siri does have some trouble recognizing custom names at times. When the alert is sent, you’ll get a notification on the lost device and an email to your connected Apple ID account.

Phone Calls

One of the biggest new additions to HomePod this week is the ability to make and receive phone calls via your connected iPhone. Make sure your iPhone is on iOS 12 and your HomePod is updated (with Personal Requests turned on), and follow these steps to make calls on HomePod:

Making a call: “Hey Siri, call Ben.”
When a call comes in on iPhone: “Hey Siri, answer my phone.”
Hanging up: “Hey Siri, hang up.”
Checking a missed call: “Hey Siri, who just called?”

During a call, HomePod’s top Siri waveform display will turn a bright green, indicating that you’re on the phone with someone. If you don’t want to speak to Siri to hang up, you can simply tap once on HomePod to end the call. Of course, the usual volume indicators can also make the person on the other end softer or louder.

If you answered a call on iPhone and want to move over to HomePod, follow these steps:

Transferring a call from iPhone to HomePod
Answer or place a call on iPhone
Tap “Audio” in the Phone app while the call is live
Choose your HomePod speaker Notably, you won’t be able to perform any of Siri’s basic search or query functionalities while HomePod is being used as a speakerphone. If someone else calls you while you’re talking on HomePod, you can tap the green light at the top of HomePod to switch to it, or double tap the green light to end the current call and switch to the new one. To continuously switch between calls, tap the top of HomePod.

More details on HomePod’s new update can be found in our launch post, and if you need a refresher on HomePod’s overall set of features be sure to visit our full HomePod Roundup.

Related Roundup: HomePodBuyer’s Guide: HomePod (Buy Now)
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Mi 8 Pro looks like an iPhone, but has a feature Apple fans can only dream of

Xiaomi Mi 8 Pro

Xiaomi has launched two new smartphones, the Mi 8 Pro and the Mi 8 Lite, which join several other members of the Mi 8 family that were announced in June. These two new phones will get a global release in the near future, and it’s the Mi 8 Pro that will attract the most attention. Let’s take a look at that one first.

The Mi 8 Pro’s specification is very similar to the existing Xiaomi Mi 8, while adding some of the key tech seen in the Xiaomi Mi 8 Explorer Edition, which has the unfortunate side effect of making it look even more like the Apple iPhone XS. The main difference between the Mi 8 and the Mi 8 Pro is the addition of an in-display fingerprint sensor, which we’ve seen on several phones already, including the Vivo Nex S.

Xiaomi has abandoned the 3D face identification system on the front for a more conventional infrared system, but has not chosen to add a second fingerprint sensor for backup, like Huawei and Porsche Design did with the Mate RS. The face-unlock cam and the 20-megapixel selfie camera live in a notch above the 6.21-inch OLED screen, which has a 2248 x 1080 pixel resolution. Both rear cameras have 12 megapixels, and the phone has a Snapdragon 845 processor and either 6GB or 8GB of RAM.

Perhaps the best news, if you liked the look of the Mi 8 Explorer, is Xiaomi will sell the Mi 8 Pro with the translucent rear panel. Whether what you’re seeing behind it is actually factual — there are question marks over component placement, and the overall neatness of the presentation — is irrelevant.

Xiaomi Mi 8 Explorer with translucent rear panel Andy Boxall/Digital Trends

We’ve seen the Mi 8 Explorer, and as you can see in the photo here, it looks fantastic. If the Mi 8 Pro looks as good, it’ll be the model to buy. It also comes in colorful blue and orangey red, each with a fetching gradient, making them very reminiscent of the best Huawei P20 Pro colors.

The Xiaomi Mi 8 Lite is a midrange phone with a Snapdragon 660 chip, either 4GB or 6GB of RAM, a monster 24-megapixel selfie camera, and a lesser 12 megapixel/5 megapixel lens setup on the back. A traditional fingerprint sensor is also found on the rear panel, and the screen measures 6.26 inches with a 2280 x 1080 pixel resolution. The phone will also come in some bright gradient-style colors, as well as a more subdued gray.

Xiaomi Mi 8 Lite

To confuse everyone just a little more, the new Mi 8 Pro and Mi 8 Lite join not only the Mi 8 and Mi 8 Explorer edition, but also a Mi 8 SE which has a smaller 5.88-inch screen, and a Snapdragon 710 processor. An international release for the existing Mi 8 phones is unlikely, however, and according to Xiaomi’s senior vice president Wang Xiang, the Pro and Lite will see a global release. Remember though, anyone wanting one in the U.S. will still have to import one.

Otherwise, expect to see the Mi 8 Pro and Lite on sale in China and Xiaomi’s growing international and European markets by the end of September. Prices are shockingly reasonable, with even the 8GB/128GB Mi 8 Pro coming in at around $525 when directly converted over from its Chinese price. The cheaper Mi 8 Lite tops out at around $290 for the 6GB/128GB version.

Editors’ Recommendations

  • Xiaomi Mi A2/Mi A2 Lite: Everything you need to know
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How to use Siri Shortcuts

Apple has finally released iOS 12 to the public, bringing with it improved notifications, ways to track how long you spend on your phone, and the ability to set up shortcuts to make doing things easier and faster through the Siri Shortcuts app. Siri Shortcuts could supercharge the aging Siri, making it much more useful in a world with Google Assistant and Amazon’s Alexa.

Thankfully, using Siri Shortcuts is relatively easy. Like any Apple app, it is well-designed and clean, plus you don’t have to start from scratch — there are dozens of shortcuts you can choose from to get started, without having to create your own.

If you want to create your own Siri shortcut, however, it’s thankfully very easy to do, and we’re about to show you how. For the purpose of this, we’re going to create a shortcut that you could use in the morning to start your drive to work and play a music playlist — perfect for when you first get in the car.

Open the Siri Shortcuts app and head to the Library tab. Press Create Shortcut.
Scroll down to the first action you want to the shortcut to perform. Here, we want the shortcut to begin our drive to San Francisco.
Enter the address you want the shortcut to navigate to in the box that appears.
On the bottom half of the screen, scroll down to the Music app.
Tap on the app, and select a playlist or music that you want to listen to.
Rename your shortcut by tapping on the Settings button under the Done button on the top right. Then tap Done.
Press Done on the top right-hand side of the screen.

Once your shortcut is created, you can run it from the Shortcuts app, but there are probably easier ways to run it. For example, you can add a shortcut to Siri by going into the Shortcut’s settings and tapping Add to Siri. You’ll then be prompted to add a voice command, which will be used to run a specific shortcut.

You can also add shortcuts to a widget. First, add the widget by scrolling down to the bottom of your widgets, tapping Edit, and adding the shortcuts widget. If you only have a few shortcuts, they’ll all show up — but you can tweak the shortcuts that show by heading to the settings for each shortcut and either enabling or disabling Show in Widget.

Of course, there are plenty of Siri Shortcuts to choose from. For example, you can easily log your weight or how much water you’re drinking into the Health app without having to open the app. It’s worth going through the list of shortcuts on offer to see if any would be helpful to you.

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Windows handwriting recognition tool may pose security risk via text storage

Kyle Wiggers/Digital Trends

Windows has a built-in tool for improving its own handwriting recognition capability, and like many modern, smart features that increase their accuracy over time, it employs user data to do that. Some are concerned, however, that the way it stores that information could prove to be a security risk, as researchers have discovered everything from the content of emails, to passwords stored in a single file.

Handwriting recognition was introduced in Windows 8 as part of its big drive toward touchscreen functionality. It automatically translates touch or stylus (these are the best ones) inputs into formatted text, improving its readability for the user, and giving other applications the ability to comprehend it. To help improve its accuracy, it looks at commonly used words in other documents, storing such information in a file called WaitList.dat. But digital forensics expert Barnaby Skeggs has highlighted that it stores just about any text on your system — not just handwritten content.

“Once [handwriting recognition] is on, text from every document and email which is indexed by the Windows Search Indexer service is stored in WaitList.dat. Not just the files interacted via the touchscreen writing feature,” Skeggs told ZDnet.

Considering how ubiquitous the Windows search indexing system is, this could mean that the content of most documents, emails, and forms ends up inside the WaitList file. The concern is that someone with access to the system — via a hack or malware attack — could find all sorts of personally identifiable information about the system’s owner. Worse yet, WaitList can store information even after the original files have been deleted, potentially opening up even greater security holes.

PowerShell command:

Stop-Process -name "SearchIndexer" -force;Start-Sleep -m 500;Select-String -Path $env:USERPROFILEAppDataLocalMicrosoftInputPersonalizationTextHarvesterWaitList.dat -Encoding unicode -Pattern "password"

— Barnaby Skeggs (@barnabyskeggs) August 26, 2018

This is something that has purportedly been known about in the forensics space for some time and has provided researchers with a useful way to prove the prior existence of a file and in some cases its contents, even if the original had been scrubbed from existence.

Although typically such a potential security hole would warrant contacting Microsoft about the issue before making the public aware of it, Skeggs has reportedly not done so, since the handwriting recognition feature is working as intended. This isn’t a bug, even if it’s potentially exploitable.

If you want to close up that potential security hole on your system, you can delete WaitList.dat manually by going to C:Users%User%AppDataLocalMicrosoftInputPersonalizationTextHarvester. If you don’t find that folder, you don’t have handwriting recognition enabled, so you should be secure.

Well, you should be secure against this potential security flaw at least. We’d still recommend you enable Windows Defender and use one of the best anti-malware solutions.

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Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 vs. RTX 2080 Ti

Boasting up to six times the performance of the older GTX 1080 series graphics card, Nvidia’s latest GeForce RTX 2080 and RTX 2080 Ti are GPU beasts. Even though you may not need — or experience — such massive performance gains on current titles, enthusiasts eyeing the new RTX cards are actually buying into Nvidia’s vision for the future of gaming, which is centered around the new ray tracing capabilities of the RTX chips’ Turing architecture.

But even at the high end of Nvidia’s new gaming GPU line, there is a sizable difference in what the standard RTX 2080 Founders Edition is capable of compared to the RTX 2080 Ti Founders Edition. Some will likely want to gravitate towards the Ti’s improved specifications, but that comes with a hefty $400 price premium. We’ll break down just how the two top-shelf RTX GPUs stack up.


Because it’s more densely packed, the RTX 2080 Ti Founders Edition performs slightly better in our early benchmarks compared to its non-Ti variant. That’s to be expected, given that the Ti packs in more CUDA, Tensor, and RT Cores.

When benchmarked using 3DMark, the RTX 2080 Ti performed consistently better across the three tests. This means that the Ti variant had a performance improvement over the base model ranging from 13 percent for the Fire Strike test to up to 31 percent for the Sky Diver test.

When we looked at our gaming results using Deus Ex: Mankind Divided, performance between the two high-end RTX chips were on par at lower resolutions, but the difference was significant at 4K resolution. On Ultra, both chips posted the same results at 1080p, and the Ti variant started to edge ahead under 1440p. Under 4K resolution, the RTX 2080 Ti outperformed the standard model by 29 percent, suggesting that the added Cuda cores and memory on the Ti variant make a more meaningful contribution to graphics performance at higher resolutions and during more GPU-intensive tasks.

Interestingly, though, performance between the RTX 2080 Ti and the RTX 2080 was roughly on par using our Civilization VI test. With the 4K Ultra settings enabled, the Ti variant scored 74, compared to 76 on the non-Ti chip. Performance was similar using the 4K Medium, 1440p Ultra, and 1440p Medium settings, with both chips posting results within range of each other.

Both the RTX 2080 Ti and RTX 2080 will be able to handle first-person shooters at 4K resolution and 60 frames-per-second. And as we’ve seen demonstrated by the Deus Ex: Mankind Divided results, games with Deep Learning Super Sampling (DLSS) built-in should see even bigger performance gains with the Ti version of the RTX 2080.

DLSS delivers better image quality improvements, smoother frames, and better anti-aliasing, thanks to the use of the the built-in Tensor cores and artificial intelligence. The Ti version of the the card has 576 Tensor Cores, versus just 384 on the non-Ti variant, giving it a bigger performance advantage in situations where the GPU would be taxed. In this case, some of these dedicated cores kick in to offload some of the strain on the GPU.


RTX 2080 Ti
RTX 2080

CUDA cores:

Base speed:

Boost speed:

Boost speed (FE model):

Memory (GDDR6):

Memory speed:

Memory interface:

At the top of Nvidia’s graphics pyramid, both the RTX 2080 Founders Edition and RTX 2080 Ti Founders Edition support ray tracing, AI-enhanced image rendering, and the single-cable VRLink protocol to connect virtual reality headsets to PCs using a single USB-C cable.

The main difference between these two cards is in the number of dedicated Cuda, Tensor, and RT Cores. The Ti’s more densely packed cores gives it a performance advantage under some tests. The Ti version comes with six graphics processing clusters, each with its own raster engine and six texture processing clusters. Each texture processing cluster comes with two streaming multiprocessor (SM), with each SM containing a single RT processing core, 64 CUDA Cores, eight Tensor Cores, and four texture units. Essentially, as you go down the line in the RTX series, you’ll find fewer RT and Tensor Cores. The RTX 2080, for example, packs just 46 RT cores and 368 Tensor Cores, compared to 72 RT cores and 576 Tensor Cores on the Ti edition.

With more RAM —  11GB versus 8GB — and the ability to handle more operations per second, the Ti card should also perform better than the base RTX 2080 when it comes to ray tracing. Nvidia claims that the RTX 2080 is capable of 60 trillion RTX OPS and 8 GigRays per second, while the more capable Ti edition can handle 78 trillion RTX OPS and 10 GigaRays per second.

Given that there are no game available right now with ray tracing, we’re not able to get benchmark results for these cards. Once ray tracing hits, we can likely expect better performance in how light is rendered in real-time a scene with the RTX 2080 Ti due to its stronger hardware specs.

Which to buy?

The Founders Edition of the RTX 2080 and RTX 2080 Ti are the top two Nvidia’s new line cards, but they’re also the two most expensive. The RTX 2080 Founders Edition retails for $800, while the Ti edition will cost $1,200. If you’re looking to connect two cards together, Nvidia’s Founders Edition cards use the NVLink connector, so you’ll need to add a $80 bridge for a multi-GPU setup.

Unless you’re pushing the performance boundaries with high resolution gaming, most gamers will likely experience little perceivable performance improvements with the Ti card at this time. Given the steep price premium of $400 between the two cards, you may be better served by spending the difference in cost in upgrading your SSD or system RAM, or even going springing for a previous-gen GTX 1080 or 10 80 Ti. That is, at least until more ray tracing games launch to justify this investment. Ray tracing and AI-enabled rendering may be the future, but that future isn’t quite here yet.

Editors’ Recommendations

  • Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 vs. GTX 1080
  • We tested Nvidia’s RTX 2080 and 2080 Ti. Are they a worthy upgrade?
  • Nvidia GeForce RTX 2000 series: Everything you need to know
  • Nvidia RTX 2080 reviews may not drop until September 19
  • No games will support ray tracing when Nvidia RTX graphics cards launch


Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 vs. GTX 1080

With the hype surrounding ray tracing, artificial intelligence, and Nvidia’s claims of up to six times the performance improvement, the RTX 2080 is an enticing GPU. If you have an older GPU, the decision may be easier, but gamers who already have last generation’s GTX 1080 flagship will have to weigh any potential gains against the cost.

Even if you’re not looking at playing games with ray tracing, there’s still plenty of upside with the new RTX 2080 cards once developers add more support for the card. With the RTX chips, current titles will see modest performance gains, but if you’re upgrading your entire setup, complete with a 4K gaming monitor, you’ll also be able to benefit from smart features like upscaling and improved image quality. All that comes at a cost, and we’ll help you decide whether these gains are worth the $250 premium for the RTX 2080.


Nvidia claims that the RTX 2080 can deliver up to 50 percent performance improvement when compared to older GTX 1080 cards, but our results were mixed. Although the RTX 2080 easily beats the GTX 1080 in our benchmarks, it didn’t quite top the GTX 1080 Ti. The RTX 2080 fared better than the non-Ti GTX 1080 in our 3DMark Sky Diver and Time Spy tests, but results for the Fire Strike tests were within range. When compared to the GTX 1080 Ti, the results delivered by the RTX 2080 was within range. The higher Time Spy results achieved by the RTX card is significant, given that this particular benchmark evaluates DirectX 12 gaming.

When we compared the three cards using gaming tests, such as Civilization VI or Deus Ex: Mankind Divided, we found similar results, with the RTX 2080 besting the GTX 1080, but performance was either slightly worse or on par with the GTX 1080 Ti. For example, in Deus Ex, the RTX 2080 scored 70, 66, and 38 FPS using the game’s Ultra settings on 1080p, 1440p, and 4K resolutions. Meanwhile, the Ti variant of the GTX 1080 generated better scores of 98 and 70 FPS on lower resolutions, and it matches the RTX 2080’s score of 38 FPS on 4K.

The non-Ti variant performed slightly worse with scores of 26 and 58 FPS on the lower resolutions, but the GTX 1080 does better than the RTX 2080 with a score of 71 FPS at 4K, suggesting that the performance of the RTX 2080 in Deus Ex falls somewhere between the GTX 1080 and GTX 1080 Ti. Results were also similar with our Civilization VI and Battlefield 1 tests.

Until we see more games developers take advantage of the RTX chip’s new capabilities, we can likely expect the RTX 2080 to perform somewhere between the base GTX 1080 and the higher end GTX 1080 Ti. Once games take advantage of features like ray tracing, deep learning super sampling (DLSS), and other AI-enabled improvements, then can we expect the RTX 2080 to show even better performance results. At launch, there won’t be any new games that take advantage of ray tracing, but 25 titles will come with DLSS. When DLSS is enabled, gamers should see smoother graphics.


RTX 2080
GTX 1080


CUDA cores

Base speed

Boost speed

Boost speed (FE model)


Memory speed


With only modest real-world performance gains on current titles compared to the older GTX 1080 cards, early adopters of Nvidia’s GeForce RTX 2080 are essentially investing in Nvidia’s vision for the future of graphics. This vision is delivered by the new Turing architecture, which fuses next-generation shaders with real-time ray tracing and all-new AI capabilities. This should translate to greater details, more realistic scenes, and smoother rendering with the RTX chip.

For gamers who already own a high-end GTX 10-series card, ray tracing will be the biggest draw to Nvidia’s new cards. Ray tracing is a feature that Nvidia has been working on for ten years, and it allows game developers to render scenes with photorealism in real-time by showing how light is absorbed, refracted, or reflected off of objects. This cinematic effect is popular on computer-generated imagery in movies, and now it’s being done dynamically throughout a game thanks to the built-in RT Cores.

Because Nvidia packaged a dense number of cores on the RTX series — the RTX 2080 ships with 46 RT cores and 368 Tensor Cores — the die is also considerably larger than the GTX series, measuring 754mm compared to 471mm. With this much power, Nvidia had to add a second fan to the RTX cards to keep things running cool.

The RTX 2080 supports dual-8K 60 FPS HDR displays. While the resolution won’t be mainstream for some time to come, native HDR support is beneficial for gamers to spot more details in shadows. If you’re buying a VR headset for the first time, the RTX supports a single-cable VRLink connection, allowing video, data, and power to flow through a USB-C cable.

The GTX 1080 is far more practical

Nvidia’s RTX 2080 — along with the RTX 2080 Ti — represents Nvidia’s gaming flagship GPU at the moment, and the card’s pricing reflects its status in the lineup. The GeForce 2080 Founders Edition is currently priced at $800, with pricing for the RTX 2080 Ti Founders Edition stretching to $1,200. That’s a lot, even for the top-of-the-line models. By comparison, the 1080 Ti debuted at just $700 at launch.

The GTX 1080 Founders Edition currently retails for $550, representing a $250 savings compared to its RTX counterpart. If you can wait, prices for the RTX series are bound to drop further once the RTX series ships.

If you don’t need the modest performance gains of the RTX 2080 or the future-ready ray tracing capabilities, then the GTX 1080 will be the way to go. At least at launch, ray tracing games won’t immediately be available, so you won’t be able to experience the full value of the RTX cards right away — Nvidia lists eleven titles that will be coming at some point in the future. However, even if you choose to play currently available titles, features like the built-in Tensor Core, AI-enabled scene rendering, and DLSS may still be useful, especially if the RTX 2080 can upscale your 1080p title into a 4K game, provided you have the budget to make the RTX jump.

Editors’ Recommendations

  • Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 vs. RTX 2080 Ti
  • Nvidia’s GeForce RTX 2060 might launch next year without ray tracing
  • We tested Nvidia’s RTX 2080 and 2080 Ti. Are they a worthy upgrade?
  • Nvidia’s GeForce RTX 20 Series starts at $500 and features real-time ray tracing
  • Nvidia’s Turing chip reinvents computer graphics (but not for gaming)


We tested Nvidia’s RTX 2080 and 2080 Ti. Are they a worthy upgrade?



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Riley Young/Digital Trends

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Riley Young/Digital Trends

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Riley Young/Digital Trends

RTX 2080

Riley Young/Digital Trends

A new line of graphics cards only comes every couple of years. Cards as ambitious as Nvidia’s RTX 2080 and 2080 Ti? They’re a rare bird indeed.

After an entire year of anticipation, we finally have these two new, powerful GPUs loaded into our systems. But the first thing we wanted to test wasn’t the fancy, ray tracing abilities or AI-powered anti-aliasing. No, no. Here’s the question we sought to answer: Do they actually deliver a substantial improvement on performance worth their high price tag? The answer may surprise you. And disappoint you.

On your marks

For all of our initial testing, we wanted to use the same system we test every other graphics card on — and that’s our monster 12-core Threadripper 1920X system, which includes 32GB of RAM and an Asus 4K gaming monitor. We popped in the GeForce RTX 2080 and 2080 Ti, both Founders Edition straight from Nvidia, and got right to benchmarking.

We started our tests with 3DMark, again, to really get an apples-to-apples sense for how these graphics cards compare with others. The immediate results? Well, we can say with certainty these new cards are faster than the previous generation, and the RTX 2080 Ti is definitely the most powerful graphics card ever made. With a score of 20,210, that’s the highest score for a single GPU we’ve ever recorded.

But as the numbers poured in, we started to see what would be confirmed through game tests later: This just isn’t the performance spike Nvidia boasted of. 

If we take a look at the performance jump from the GTX 980 to the GTX 1080, it’s an impressive 33 percent increase in Fire Strike. Going from the 1080 to the 2080 we see only an 11 percent increase, which places it behind the 1080 Ti in terms of ranking. With the significant increase in CUDA cores, faster GDDR6 memory, redesigned cooling solution, increased price, and Nvidia’s hype machine at full tilt, we expected a bit more of a jump in performance over its predecessor.

RTX 2080 Riley Young/Digital Trends

Fortunately, the 2080 Ti fares a bit better. With a 23 percent increase over the GTX 1080 Ti in 3DMark, that’s closer to what we’d expect in a standard generational jump. Unfortunately, you’ll have to pay up for that increase. The 2080 Ti carries a $400 premium at $1,200 over the 2080’s $800 price tag, and that’s $500 more at launch than the 1080 Ti cost when it was introduced. 

In-game testing

Our standard suite of test games includes Civilization VI, Battlefield 1, Deus Ex: Mankind Divided — and Fortnite, for kicks. 4K is still the holy grail when it comes to gaming, but we started out our testing in 1440p to see how the 2080 and 2080 Ti could handle lower resolutions. (We hope it goes without saying, but if you’re playing games in 1080p or lower, no need to drop this much cash on a graphics card. A GTX 1060 or 1070 should do you just fine.)

The framerates we got lined up well with the precedent set by the 3DMark scores. In terms of game performance, the RTX 2080 comes in above the GTX 1080 — and just behind the 1080 Ti. In 1440p, games like Battlefield 1 look beautiful and play smoothly on the RTX 2080, and it will even take full advantage of your high-end 144Hz panel. Same story for Fortnite, where we averaged 142 frames per second. That’s around a 20-25 percent increase over framerates delivered by the GTX 1080, but a bit behind what the GTX 1080 Ti can pump out. It’s not the massive leap forward we’d hoped for, but it’s on par for a new generation of GPUs. 

When jumping up to 4K, we are happy to report the RTX 2080 can handle almost every game this resolution with settings maxed. Civilization VI, Battlefield 1, and Fortnite easily cleared the 60 FPS hurdle, and that’ll be indicative of most modern games you currently play. Deus Ex: Mankind Divided presented a bit of a stumbling block in 4K, but it’s an outlier in terms of how it’s optimized.

Again, those are positive numbers. They just don’t quite match the hype of Nvidia’s CEO and marketing team — and thanks to the price of the card, certainly don’t bring 4K gaming access to the masses.

The RTX 2080 Ti, on the other hand, has some raw power that we haven’t seen before. We’re seeing a similar 20-30 percent framerate increase in games like Deus Ex and Battlefield 1. It’s a bit more exciting when you’re stepping into uncharted territory.

RTX 2080

RTX 2080

RTX 2080

RTX 2080

Regardless of the resolution, the 2080 Ti has a ton of power at its disposal. Games like Battlefield 1 and Fortnite feel nearly wasted, tapping out over 150 FPS. When you see some of those beautiful environments in Battlefield 1 rendered in brilliant, smooth 4K, it’s hard to be disappointed.

If you’ve been waiting around for a graphics card to properly match that huge, 4K monitor sitting on your desk, the 2080 Ti is as close as you can get. It still sank under 60 FPS during Deus Ex with an average framerate of 49 FPS, but this chip makes nearly every game we tried look like a walk in the park. The same could be said of the 1080 Ti, which was already a very powerful chip, but the 2080 Ti takes it one step further.

But should you buy one?

There are still larger questions about how these cards will perform with RTX enabled. It’s hard to imagine you won’t see a somewhat significant dip, given the amount of extra processing that has to happen. 

In the meantime, the RTX 2080 and 2080 Ti are a bit hard to make a conclusive call on. A lot of the potential that lays dormant in these GPUs can’t be fully taken advantage of yet. Nvidia isn’t the first tech company to ask its fans to buy into a dream before its time, but for a dramatic price increase over what its new GPUs have debuted at in the past, it’s asking a lot.

A lot of the potential that lays dormant in these GPUs can’t be fully taken advantage of yet.

The RTX 2080 Ti, in particular, had some noteworthy performance gains that make it a really solid upgrade. But the RTX 2080 is a bit harder to recommend, especially when the 1080 Ti currently sells for at least a hundred bucks cheaper and offers better framerates.

In terms of ray tracing and new AI capabilities, these might be the most advanced graphics cards ever made. They might be the foundation for an entirely new era of game visuals. We’ve seen the demos, and there’s no debating it’s impressive. Who knows? Maybe every game in 2025 will be RTX-enabled, and you’ll be happy you sprung for the 2080 rather than the 1080 Ti — seven years later.

To sum it up: Do buy one of these graphics cards (and spring for the 2080 Ti!) if you want the absolute best performance that can be had today and have bought into Nvidia’s vision of the future. Otherwise, your gaming rig and the games you own now will be better served by an upgrade to last year’s models. In fact, one of the best things about the introduction of this next generation might just be that last gen’s cards are more affordable than ever.

Editors’ Recommendations

  • Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 vs. GTX 1080
  • Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 vs. RTX 2080 Ti
  • Nvidia vs. AMD
  • GTX 1080 graphics card prices plunge following Nvidia’s RTX announcement
  • Nvidia RTX 2080 reviews may not drop until September 19

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