wifi Stories October 9, 2018

Expanding its lineup beyond the popular AmpliFi HD mesh router and AmpliFi Teleport, Ubiquiti Networks has announced its latest offering, AmpliFi Instant. With a super fast set up process and an affordable price point, this newest product looks to be a compelling router choice.

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wifi Stories June 19, 2018

TP-Link releases Deco M9 Plus tri-band mesh router system, 2-pack covers over 4000 sq. ft.

TP-Link has made its latest mesh Wi-Fi router system available today. The Deco M9 Plus Tri-band Mesh Wi-Fi 2-Pack System arrives in the company’s lineup as a more powerful option than the Deco M5.

wifi Stories May 17, 2018

For the last year or so I’ve been on the fence about picking up a new router. But along with moving into a new house, I decided to finally retire my Time Capsule. After a lot of deliberation, I landed on TP-Link’s deco mesh Wi-Fi system and I’ve been really impressed with the features it offers, such as the app, performance, and price. Read on for our full review.

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wifi Stories October 16, 2017

Update: Apple says the security vulnerability has been fixed in the beta versions of the next software updates to iOS, macOS, watchOS, and tvOS. These releases are expected this month (based on Apple Watch scheduled to gain Apple Music streaming in watchOS 4.1 in October.)

WPA2 – the encryption standard that secures all modern wifi networks – has been cracked. An attacker could now read all information passing over any wifi network secured by WPA2, which is most routers, both public and private.

Android and Linux are particularly vulnerable, being described as ‘trivial’ to attack, but all other platforms are vulnerable too, including iOS and macOS …

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wifi Stories April 22, 2016

definitive-w7

I love the concept of streaming music around the home. There are a lot of great wireless Bluetooth speakers for wireless music on the move, but it’s still unclear what to choose for a static home environment. Apple’s answer is AirPlay, but it has flaws: no multi-room support from iOS devices, limited adoption by speaker manufacturers, and spotty reliability at best.

I’ve been trying an AirPlay alternative, called Play-Fi, which is a competing industry technology for home Wi-Fi music streaming from DTS. Specifically, I tested the Definitive W7 wireless speaker which integrates Play-Fi. Read on for my review  ….

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wifi Stories August 17, 2015

tim-cook-apple-tv

Apple plans to hold one of its annual fall media events on Wednesday, September 9th to introduce the new iPhone 6S and iPhone 6S Plus with Force Touch, and after many fits and starts, it appears that the long-awaited next-generation Apple TV will also be unveiled. We’ve been reporting on this upcoming model since 2014, as Apple has been planning to update its set-top-box with support for an App Store for quite some time.

Earlier this year, Apple had locked in a June WWDC debut for both the new Apple TV hardware and software upgrades, but the company ultimately decided to delay the introduction until the fall. While some had speculated that the announcement was pushed back due to a lack of content deals, we are told that the delay was internally attributed to a concern over compromising iOS 9 engineering resources, as the latest OS release is focused at least as much on polish as on new features.

Why would the new Apple TV potentially take away resources from iOS 9? According to sources, this new Apple TV model, codenamed J34, will be the first model to run a full-blown iOS core. Specifically, the new Apple TV operating system will be a TV-optimized version of iOS 9. In addition to the new hardware inside, running iOS 9 will give the new Apple TV a series of benefits over the current model. Below, we explore what users can expect from Apple’s next-generation living room product.

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wifi Stories May 23, 2015

Kanex USB-C to Ethernet

Adapters for adding thicker ports are nothing new for Apple’s modern line of notebooks. Even the high-end Retina MacBook Pro decidedly excludes a direct Ethernet connection, and Apple’s MacBook Air and new ultrathin 12-inch MacBook are especially too thin for a wired connection to the Internet without relying on an adapter in the middle.

While modern WiFi is fine for most everyday situations, even Apple acknowledges that a wired connection is necessary in some instances. To remedy this, it sells a $29 USB Ethernet Adapter and a faster $29 Thunderbolt to Ethernet Adapter. The 12-inch MacBook has neither port, however, additionally requiring Apple’s $19 USB-C to USB Adapter to work with the slower adapter.

Fortunately with USB-C being a new industry standard, accessory makers like Kanex are ready with solutions like the $29.95 USB-C to Gigabit Ethernet Adapter made for the new 12-inch MacBook and other USB-C computers… expand full story

wifi Stories May 12, 2015

WWDC-Homekit-01

Broadcom today announced that its new SDK for the Internet of Things (IoT) now officially supports Apple’s home automation HomeKit platform, bringing us a step closer to widespread availability of Siri-controlled smart home devices.

Broadcom notes that its SDK is the first to officially support HomeKit specs for WiFi and Bluetooth Smart accessories, allowing developers to use its Wireless Internet Connectivity for Embedded Devices (WICED) platform to build apps for Apple’s new Siri-controlled, home automation platform. They will also be able to build products that double as a hardware bridge for non-HomeKit accessories.  expand full story

wifi Stories April 30, 2015

Apple Watch S1

We’ve already seen the Apple Watch get torn apart by iFixit, giving us an inside look at the Taptic Engine, Digital Crown, and (mostly) battery, and now ABI Research has gone a level further and opened up the custom designed S1 chip that is the brains of the Apple Watch… expand full story

wifi Stories April 22, 2015

Security researchers yesterday demonstrated a method of creating a ‘No iOS zone,’ inside of which all carrier iPhones and iPads on iOS 8 are rendered impossible to use, reports Skycure. Most apps that connect to the Internet crash on opening (shown above), and it’s even possible to put iOS devices into a constant boot loop (shown below).

The approach exploits an SSL bug in iOS, causing an app to crash when it attempts to establish a secure connection to a server. Although the exploit requires the iPhone or iPad to connect to a fake WiFi hotspot, the researchers were able to force devices to do so …  expand full story

wifi Stories March 6, 2015

Just ahead of the finalized Apple Watch’s presentation at Apple’s March 9th “Spring Forward” event, sources with hands-on Apple Watch experience have revealed a collection of new details about the device’s features to 9to5Mac. Our sources have offered new information on the Watch’s real-world battery life, health and fitness features, apps, and experiences using Apple’s next-generation touchscreen hardware…

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wifi Stories January 27, 2015

Screenshot 2015-01-27 12.59.10

In line with our report from earlier this week, Apple has released OS X Yosemite 10.10.2 via the Mac App Store. The update brings the changes that we detailed in our previous report:

  • Resolves an issue that may cause WiFi to disconnect
  • Resolves an issue that may cause web pages to load slowly
  • Fixes an issue that caused Spotlight to load remote email content when the preference was disabled in Mail
  • Improves audio and video sync when using Bluetooth headphones
  • Adds the ability to browse iCloud Drive in Time Machine
  • Improves VoiceOver speech performance
  • Resolves an issue that causes VoiceOver to echo characters when entering text on a web page
  • Addresses an issue that may cause the input method to switch languages unexpectedly
  • Improves stability and security in Safari

Apple also released iOS 8.1.3 with various bug fixes today.

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wifi Stories January 26, 2015

The popular secure password management app 1Password is out with a big update today adding new features on both iOS and Mac. Arriving in version 5.2 of 1Password for iOS is a new login creator tool, a one-time password tool for use with two factor auth, new entry fields for pro users, and more. On the Mac side, 1Password version 5.1 was released adding a number of improvements to sync. This includes the ability to sync secondary vaults to iOS over WiFi. More on the major new features below:

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wifi Stories January 7, 2015

Apple releases new pre-release OS X Yosemite 10.10.2 beta (build 14C94b) w/ focus on WiFi, Mail, & VoiceOver

Apple has released an updated build of the pre-release OS X 10.10.2 software update. The new build, 14C94b, continues to focus on fixes for WiFi, Mail, and VoiceOver. The update is available through the Updates tab of the Mac App Store for users on the pre-release version of OS X Yosemite; as with previous pre-release builds, the update does require a reboot and comes in at 561MB. We’ll check out the new build and update with any notable changes.

Smart lock maker August announced its latest device today at CES 2015 simply dubbed ‘Connect’. The August Connect is an WiFi-connected device that plugs into a power outlet in your home to provide the Bluetooth-connected August Smart Lock with a constant Internet connection. August says its latest accessory enables several new features for owners of its smart lock product… expand full story

wifi Stories December 12, 2014

Yosemite 10.10.2 beta

Apple has seeded a new build of pre-release OS X Yosemite 10.10.2 highlighting focus ares including WiFi, Mail, and VoiceOver. The third tester preview of OS X 10.10.2 brings the build number up to 14C81f following build 14C78c released earlier this month. We’ll update with any notable changes spotted in the new release for testers. expand full story

wifi Stories December 4, 2014

Apple seeds new beta of OS X 10.10.2, highlights fixes for Wi-Fi issues

Apple has seeded a new build of the OS X Yosemite beta to AppleSeed users and developers. The seed notes for build 14C78c say that testers should focus on Wi-Fi connectivity, indicating that Apple has done some work in that area to resolve outstanding issues.

The update comes in at about 470 MB and is available now in the Updates tab of the Mac App Store. It should be available shortly on the OS X Developer Center as well.

wifi Stories November 18, 2014

yosemite

Yesterday’s dot-release of OS X 10.10.1 has seemingly failed to address the WiFi problems some users have been experiencing since upgrading to Yosemite, according to continuing posts on the Apple Support Communities.

Despite the first bullet-point in the release notes for 10.10.1 reading ‘Improves WiFi reliability,’ many of those who had reported connection failures, dropped connections and slow speeds said that nothing had changed since upgrading to 10.10.1 …  expand full story

wifi Stories November 17, 2014

Yosemite 10.10.1In addition to releasing iOS 8.1.1 for iPhone and iPad users, Apple has released OS X Yosemite 10.10.1 with bug fixes and performance improvements for Macs running the latest version of the desktop operating system. Mac users that have experienced WiFi performance issues running Yosemite should expect improvements with this bug fix release. The update is available for Macs running OS X Yosemite through the Updates tab of the Mac App Store.

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wifi Stories September 12, 2014

As Apple’s SVP of Marketing Phil Schiller introduced WiFi Calling support coming with the iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, and other iPhones with iOS 8 on supported networks earlier this week, it was noted that only T-Mobile and EE will provide support for the new feature at launch. WiFi Calling will allow users to take advantage of home or office WiFi connections, for instance, to improve call quality in otherwise potentially low network zones. Telecommunications site LightReading reports, however, that AT&T plans to add WiFi Calling support for its subscribers beginning next year.

Speaking Friday at the Goldman Sachs Communacopia Conference, he said the carrier would use WiFi calling in 2015, but only as a complement to voice-over-LTE and 3G voice. […]

“We’re very focused on making sure it’s a great experience for customers, but we see it as a complement, not a replacement,” he said. “We feel good about a great nationwide network with unlimited talk and text.”

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wifi Stories September 9, 2014

9to5-image 2014-09-09 at 1.27.31 PM

Apple has announced several new wireless features for the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, including faster Wi-Fi that achieves speeds of up to 3x faster than previous models. New LTE technology is also preset, allowing speeds of up to 150 Mbps.

Perhaps more importantly, Voice over LTE calling has been enabled, and can take advantage of the new Wi-Fi hardware to place calls over a Wi-Fi connection while still using your cellular phone number. T-Mobile is one of the first carriers rolling this out in the United States.

The iPhone 6 will operate on over 200 carriers on 20 different LTE bands.

wifi Stories August 6, 2014

ikettle-1

Any tea drinker will know the experience. You wander into the kitchen to put the kettle on to make tea, wander back to the living-room or office and half an hour later realize you forgot all about it. So the second time you stand there waiting impatiently for it to boil. This is the problem the iKettle sets out to solve.

That, at least, is my excuse. The reality, of course, is that it’s a kettle with wifi – how could anyone reasonably expect me to resist … ?  expand full story

wifi Stories August 5, 2014

APPLE-CEO-Steve-Jobs-glasses

There were lots of hints that Steve Jobs was interested in changing the way we all access the internet on the devices he helped create. Back in 2011 there were reports that Apple considered developing its own network for the original iPhone that could potentially replace traditional carrier services using Wi-Fi spectrum. Before that rumours claimed Jobs was interested in Fon, a WiFi sharing service that encourages users to share wireless internet access with others. Today, Walt Mossberg from ReCode shares another story about Jobs’ interest in a world of shared Wi-Fi, describing a conversation between the two where Jobs shared his vision of making free Wi-Fi the norm: expand full story

wifi Stories June 9, 2014

iOS 8 randomizes MAC address while scanning WiFi, blocks marketers tracking you

One iOS 8 feature Apple hasn’t talked about much is its ability to randomize the device’s MAC address while scanning for WiFi networks.

In iOS 8, Wi-Fi scanning behavior has changed to use random,locally administered MAC addresses… The MAC address used for Wi-Fi scans may not always be the devices real (universal) address… Once the iOS device is done scanning it will give the real MAC ID.

This appears to be a security and privacy precaution as marketing and analytics companies routinely use this unique identifier to collect data about nearby devices scanning for WiFi networks. The New York Times published a story last year about a similar experiment at Nordstrom and several marketing companies selling data to retailers and more use the same method of picking up the MAC address from devices scanning for WiFi networks. One of those companies, Euclid Analytics, explains how it currently uses the MAC address of iPhones to help clients. While it notes “the MAC address does not disclose the device owner’s real-world identity nor any other personal data,” it also uses the data it collects to help clients “improve store layouts, determine timing for promotions and sales, measure the effects of advertising, and set staffing levels and store hours.” 

These marketing companies do the same for Samsung and Android devices, which also do not currently automatically randomize the MAC address, but it looks like Apple might put an end to that with iOS 8.

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