Don’t Use an Apple AirTag as a Pet Tracker – Use a Whistle Instead!

Apple introduced their AirTag (a Tile competitor) for those looking for an easy way to keep track of things like keys, purses, wallets, etc. However, many have been tempted to use them on their pets too. There certainly isn’t anything wrong with this thought process, but it really depends on your situation and where your pet may go missing.

How do AirTags work?

With an AirTag there is no subscription fee, no WiFi, and no GPS. It works with Ultra Wideband technology to show itself to the Find My app on your iOS devices. In order for your lost/misplaced/stolen object to show up on the Find My network it would have to be within range of another Apple device such as an iPhone, iPad or Mac. Let’s say you left your backpack with an AirTag attached to it/in it, in the library and you drove home. Now you’re miles away from your backpack.

You are way out of the range of bluetooth or even the 800 foot range of Ultra Wideband technology. However, if someone else is in the library near your backpack with an iPhone, iPad or Mac your backpack AirTag would automatically be picked up by the Find My network and show its location in the Find My app on your iOS device. Luckily the people near your backpack don’t need to do anything special. There’s nothing they need to install or activate. It all happens in the background. Your AirTag in your backpack would privately be detected and shown on the Find My network just being near another Apple device. Cool!

This is not ideal for pets depending on where they may get lost

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Before you upgrade your iPhone or iPad to iOS 11…

Apple will release the highly anticipated iOS 11 update tomorrow Tuesday, September 19th 2017. However, unlike previous iOS updates this one is likely to leave some of your apps behind.

P.S.A.: Before I go any further, don’t even think of installing iOS 11 without having backed up your iOS device first! Now on to the topic at hand:

With every operating system update since the beginning of time there have always been incompatibilities with 3rd party applications. In most cases the applications have small glitches and sometimes the more severe incompatibilities cause the applications to crash upon launching. However, this time you may have some applications that will never work again!

Apple is dropping support for 32bit applications in iOS 11

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The Best Lightning Cables for the Money – Anker Powerline II Dura Review

On the left is an Apple Lightning cable, in the middle is the new Anker Powerline II Dura and on the right is a NewerTech Lightning cable.

If you use an iPhone, iPad or iPod then chances are you’ve worn out the supplied Apple Lightning cable. They usually wear out around the connectors, exposing wires or simply failing to work anymore. I stopped buying Apple branded cables for this reason. I tried other brands, but they all seem to fail at one point or another. Some wouldn’t even give error messages indicating that the cables weren’t completely compatible. Sigh.

Anker makes the BEST Lightning cables for the money! Continue reading “The Best Lightning Cables for the Money – Anker Powerline II Dura Review”

The 1st HomeKit Enabled Security Camera has Shipped! D-Link Omna 180 Review

When it comes to home security cameras I have pretty much standardized on Google’s Nest Cams. However, the one thing that is not likely to appear in any Nest products is HomeKit support. HomeKit is the standard that Apple created for home automation and is supported in iOS, Siri, Apple TV, and the Home App that’s now built-in to iOS 10. So that means that you either buy accessories that work with HomeKit or competing platforms. Since until now there were no shipping HomeKit enabled security cameras, it really didn’t matter which platform you went with. However, that has just changed now that D-Link has shipped the Omna 180 Cam.

Viewing the Live feed from the Omna 180 cam in the iOS 10 Home App.

The 1st shipping HomeKit enabled security cam is lacking features that other cams have…

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Ecobee 3 Wi-Fi Smart Thermostat Review

ecobee-3-on-my-wall

I know it’s been a while since I’ve done gadget reviews here. However, I’ve just moved into a new home and for the first time in several years I’ve been looking at and buying smart home gadgets. I must admit that the amount of choices out there now are quite daunting. Even if you find the right gadget based upon the feature set that you’re looking for you also have also decide which platform to go with. Platform?

smart home platforms

Yes, just like you decide to go with iOS or Android, Mac or Windows, etc, your smart home gadgets work together based on alliances and partnerships. For example, I was pretty sure that I would go with a Nest thermostat. I had been looking at them for years. I liked the design. Nest even acquired Dropcam, the company I was using for all my wifi cameras. However, somewhere along the way Nest was acquired by Google. That acquisition put them at odds with Apple. I have nothing against Google or the Android platform, but all of my mobile devices are iOS based. Therefore I wanted to go with devices that work with Apple’s HomeKit platform.

The Ecobee 3 Remote Sensor Advantage

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5 Things the Periscope App Could Learn from the Facebook App

Facebook Live Streaming Button

Twitter launched Periscope on March 26th, 2015 and so far it has been a hit with many. It’s estimated that Periscope has 12 Million Users. It even got Apple’s prestigious “App of the Year” for 2015. Yes, all things are pointing to Periscope only getting better from here on out. However, Periscope is in an ever increasing crowded field. While we don’t see Meerkat in the new much anymore, there are others like Blab and yes the 800 lb gorilla, Facebook. Facebook has dipped their two into the live streaming pond a little at a time. Well recently, they waded out a little farther by starting to turn on Live Streaming in their regular Facebook iOS App for “regular folks”. I say “regular folks” because before this advancement, Facebook only allowed Public Figures (and people with Verified Pages) to stream in their Facebook Mentions App. Now keep in mind that this is a slow rollout. You may not have it yet. This feature only started rolling out since December 14th, 2015. I only just got the feature (a button shows up when you have it) right around Christmas day. I have other friends that still don’t have it yet. Whether you have it yet or not, you will ultimately have this ability (at least in the iOS App). It’s just a matter of time as they turn on more users each day.

The Periscope App Could Learn a Few Things from the Facebook App

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iPad Pro: One Month Later

iPad Pro with Apple Pencil

Time flies when you’re working! It’s hard to believe that I just looked at my calendar and realized that I’ve had my iPad Pro now for 32 days. I figured it was time to give you guys an update now that I’ve had a full month to experience it, work on it, travel with it and use Apps that were designed to take advantage of the larger display size and more importantly Apple Pencil.

First off iPad Pro without…

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What’s NEW in iOS 9 and What Apple Didn’t Show Us?

ios9-logo

Like many of you I upgraded my iPhone and iPad yesterday when iOS 9 was officially released. Looking at Apple’s website and looking at the WWDC Apple Keynote from earlier this year, I wasn’t really excited about the update. However, after spending some time digging a little deeper, I found some really cool features and hidden gems. Rather than listing them all here. I’d rather show them to you in action in this video – See What’s NEW in iOS 9 and What Apple didn’t show us:

iOS9-6s-5Up