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World of Warcraft: Battle for Azeroth review: The world is enough

Tue, 08/28/2018 - 06:35

In our age of divisiveness, World of Warcraft's Battle for Azeroth expansion begins with a premise that cuts deep. It's nasty stuff. Greed (and quite a bit of petty hate) led the Horde to burn the Night Elves' tree city a few weeks before launch, potentially killing thousands. The Alliance sought revenge, leading to an assault on its old capital of Lordaeron. And all because a godlike figure thrust his gigantic sword into Azeroth itself, causing a powerful new substance called Azerite to erupt from its core through fissures and even small volcanoes, spread over the entire world.

At a time when everyone should have been working together, suddenly everyone was at each other’s throats. Considering what the world had just gone through, the conflict seemed unnecessary. It was all a little too on-the-nose, leading some longtime Horde players to question the integrity of the Horde. Some claimed they wouldn't even play the expansion.

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Wisenet 8-channel, 4-camera 5MP DVR Kit review: Wired, multi-camera security

Tue, 08/28/2018 - 06:00
This four-camera kit provides comprehensive coverage for your home or small business.

How to buy a refurbished iMac Pro, MacBook, MacBook Pro, iPhone, or iPad from Apple

Mon, 08/27/2018 - 19:00

Updated 8/27/18 to reflect the inventory changes in the store.

Looking for a way to save some money on the latest Apple products? Consider a refurbished MacBook, refurbished iPhone, or refurbished iPad from the Apple Certified Refurbished store. A refurbished product is just like a new, but at a lower price.

Here’s a quick guide with links to the best deals you can find on the refurb store, along with a FAQ guide if you want to know more about the ins and outs of the Apple Certified Refurbished store and buying a refurbished MacBook, desktop Mac, iPhone, or iPad.

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MacOS Mojave: Everything you need to know about Apple’s Macintosh operating system

Mon, 08/27/2018 - 14:35

Apple next major revision to its Macintosh operating system is called macOS Mojave. The company revealed the update at its 2018 Worldwide Developers Conference in June, and it features several user interface improvements to make the experience on the Mac better.

In this FAQ, we’ll give you the general details on macOS Mojave: When it will be release, what Macs are compatible, etc. We’ll add more details to this article as they become available.

Editor’s note: Updated 8/27/18 with the release of macOS Mojave developer beta 9.

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Get the 2018 9.7-inch iPad for the best price we’ve seen to date

Mon, 08/27/2018 - 13:47

Apple’s new iPad has only been out for a few months, but we’re already starting to see some fantastic deals for it that go beyond the agreeable student pricing. Consider the deal today at Staples: Right now the office retailer is selling both the 32GB and 128GB 2018 9.7-inch iPads (with Wi-Fi) for $40 offRemove non-product link.

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iOS 12: Beta 11 released for developers and public testers

Mon, 08/27/2018 - 13:37

Updated 08/27/18: Apple has released iOS 12 beta 11 for developers and public testers (where it's called Public Beta 9). 

Apple both sets trends and chases them, and iOS 12, unveiled Monday at the WWDC keynote, is no exception. With this release, Apple is focusing on performance improvements and enhancements, even for older devices. The company is also making important changes to augmented reality that will enable new experiences; improving Siri, FaceTime, and the Photos app to catch up to the competition; and adding new features like personalized Memoji and weekly reports about how you’re using your device.

iOS 12 will be a free update for all users this fall, and it’s supported by every device that runs iOS 11, all the way back to the iPhone 5s released in 2013. Here’s a rundown of the biggest improvements in iOS 12.

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iPhone 2018 rumors: New screens, new chips, new cameras, new colors

Mon, 08/27/2018 - 13:18

Updated 08/27/18: Mark Gurman of Bloomberg News has weighed in with his often-accurate roundup of what to expect at next month's iPhone event. Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo also issued an investor note with several details of the upcoming phones.

Now that we’re well into 2018, rumors about the next iPhone have started to pile up. We’ll keep track of everything that’s being said and analyze what seems feasible in this article so you can keep up with the latest iPhone gossip.

No Apple Pencil support, 6.1-inch model slightly delayed

A new investor note by analyst Ming-Chi Kuo adds several new details to already-reported rumors about the upcoming iPhones.

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Move over Memoji: Here's how to use Google's custom Mini selfie stickers in Gboard

Mon, 08/27/2018 - 13:15
Google just brought Allo's awesome selfie stickers to Gboard in the form of Minis. Here's how to make yours.

Amazon's Echo Look Style Assistant just got its first price drop ever—and it's a big one

Mon, 08/27/2018 - 10:42

If you've ever dreamed of having your own personal stylist—or if you just want to get perfect shots of your #OutfitoftheDay—Amazon's Echo Look might be you new BFF. And today you can get the Alexa-powered camera for just $120, 40 percent off its list price and the first price drop everRemove non-product link. And what's more, today's deal also includes a $25 Amazon Fashion credit that's good on Amazon-sold clothing until December 31, 2018.

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You can get 200GB of free iCloud storage because even Apple knows its free tier sucks

Mon, 08/27/2018 - 10:03

It’s no surprise that the new iPhones are arriving next month. And as always, there are three things to do once you decide to buy one: pick your color, choose your carrier, and back up your old phone.

But if you’re on the free iCloud tier, that last one might be difficult since Apple still only grants 5 gigs of free space to each iCloud user. So if you take a lot of pics or have more than one device, you’re probably not going to have enough space to back up everything you need to take to your new iPhone. That may be why Apple is enticing users to upgrade to a paid plan by offering 200GB of iCloud space, 40 times as much storage as the no-cost tier, for free. Some major strings are attached, though.

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Give your door some brains! The most affordable August Smart Lock is $50 cheaper today

Mon, 08/27/2018 - 09:42

Sometimes smart home devices are loved by everyone, and sometimes opinions differ. That’s the case with today’s deal, the third-generation August Smart Lock, which is $100 at Amazon today. That’s close to $32 off its most recent sale price, and a full $50 off its retail price.

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AirPlay 2, macOS, and the limits of the HomePod

Mon, 08/27/2018 - 08:00

At $349 each, you’ll pay a pretty price to get two HomePods and pair them to work as stereo speakers. The stereo feature relies on AirPlay 2, which Apple pushed out to iOS, Apple TV, and HomePod in May 2018, after a long delay.

You’ll note I didn’t list macOS. That’s related to the question I received from Macworld reader Mikael. He paired his two HomePods for stereo sound, and cannot figure out how to access them from macOS as a single stereo audio destination. The reason? It’s currently not possible. (See Apple’s system requirements list for AirPlay 2.)

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Activo CT10 high-res digital audio player review: High-end personal audio without the high-end price tag

Mon, 08/27/2018 - 06:00
Sweet sound, compact size, superb interface, rich feature set, and a $299 price tag render this player a steal.

What to expect from Apple’s A12 processor

Mon, 08/27/2018 - 06:00

We’re getting very close to the introduction of Apple’s new iPhones for 2018, and of course they’re certain to be powered by a new Apple-designed custom system-on-chip (SoC). In carrying on from past naming conventions, it will almost certainly be called the A12, along with a colorful descriptor (as in the “A10 Fusion” or “A11 Bionic”).

By taking a look at the improvements made in previous Apple-designed SoCs and projecting forward to the current state-of-the-art in manufacturing technology, we can get a pretty good idea of what to expect from the A12. 

Apple has been very secretive about its upcoming processor, so there’s precious little solid information out there. Call this article an educated guess.

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Playing favorites: The advantages of iOS and Android

Sat, 08/25/2018 - 07:00

Let’s get real.

[Whips off sunglasses to reveal other, smaller pair of sunglasses.]

There are good reasons to use iOS and good reasons to use Android. The Macalope honestly doesn’t care which platform you choose, he just asks that you be honest about and recognize the differences.

In a transcript of a video over at the 12 toy circus poodles jumping through hoops that is Business Insider, Antonio Villas-Boas goes into “Everything wrong with the iPhone.” (Tip o’ the antlers to Nick.)

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T-Mobile data breach FAQ: What happened, how it affects you, and what you should do now

Fri, 08/24/2018 - 21:44

Update 9:30 p.m. EST: T-Mobile now says “encrypted passwords” were included in the stolen data.

T-Mobile has reported that its cyber-security team “discovered and shut down an unauthorized access to certain information, including yours, and we promptly reported it to authorities.” In plain English, that means someone somewhere may have your personal information. Here’s everything you need to know about what may have been stolen and how to protect your account:

When did the attack take place?

Early in the morning on Monday, August 20, 2018.

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Today only, get a 12-inch MacBook for as little as $700

Fri, 08/24/2018 - 18:05

I love the 12-inch MacBook, even with its single USB-C port. It’s thin and light, even to the point that I feel like I’m typing on the desk rather than a regular laptop. If that kind of thing sounds appealing to you, you’ll be happy to know that Woot (a division of Amazon) is currently selling various certified refurbished 12-inch MacBooks from 2015 for as little as $700.

The $700 unit is the 256GB configurationRemove non-product link (and, for what it’s worth, I’m happily writing on the 2017 version of it). Unfortunately, if you want it for that price, you’ll have to be okay with getting it in gold. For a bit of comparison, similar (non-refurbished) models are going for $900 over at Amazon proper.

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The adorable and portable Anker Power Cube is on sale for just $20 today

Fri, 08/24/2018 - 12:08

We love the convenience of power strips, but finding a place to hide them can be a nuisance. That’s why we’re infatuated with Anker’s Power Cube. Not only does it offer three outlets and three USB ports for connecting six devices, it’s adorable and portable. And today Amazon is selling it for just $19.54, 61 percent off the list priceRemove non-product link, matching the lowest price we’ve ever seen.

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One workaround for merging two Apple ID accounts

Fri, 08/24/2018 - 08:00

As I’ve written before, it sometimes seems like the Apple ID back-end systems run on ancient mainframes, given how inflexible the company is about allowing changes—especially in not providing a way to merge accounts, data, and ownership associated with multiple Apple IDs. I, like many people who have kicked around in the Apple ecosystem for a while, have two Apple IDs, and use one for purchases and the other for iCloud stuff. I’d rather have one, as many of you would.

Macworld reader Deb writes in with a related question that may have a better solution. She’s been using an Apple ID connected with her Gmail address for several years. However, her daughter set up an iPad and iPhone for her with a fresh Apple ID that generated a new iCloud address. She’s not committed to that address, and wondered if there were a way to bring them all together.

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Soundcast VGtx Bluetooth audio transmitter review

Fri, 08/24/2018 - 06:00
Though it's expensive, the Soundcast VGtx can broadcast Bluetooth for a moderately greater distance than the average transmitter. It also has an optical pass-through, which can be handy in home audio systems.