Best Tech of 2014
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Best Tech of 2014

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The best tech of 2014 includes updates to our favorite products and services, adding better looking displays, longer battery life and features that we use every day to the gadgets we simply cannot put down. Our favorite tech of 2014 includes affordable phone accessories and gadgets that anyone can afford and top of the line notebooks that Windows and Mac users will appreciate.

Apple and Samsung dominate the best tech of 2014 list, but they are not the only companies to make great products in 2014. LG and Motorola built on successes from last year to deliver incredible products for 2014 and Lenovo built an entertainment tablet that isn’t just impressive, it’s also affordable.

2015-GottaBeMobile-Best-of-Year-2014-COLORWe continue to see a trend of the best tech of 2014 becoming more affordable and offering more options for users. There is no longer just one best smartphone of the year, but a selection of five of the best smartphones of 2014 that offer a variety of user experiences and features that give users choice and a great overall experience.

Here is the best tech of 2014.

Best Smartphones of 2014

iPhone 6

The iPhone 6 is the best iPhone for most users.

The iPhone 6 is the best iPhone for most users.

The iPhone 6 is the best iPhone for most users thanks to a larger, but still-manageable-with-one-hand screen size. Apple delivered the first screen upgrade in two years, upgrading the iPhone 6 to a 4.7-inch screen with a higher 1,334 x 750 resolution. After using a 4-inch iPhone 5s or iPhone 5 for the past two years, this is a welcome upgrade.

Read: iPhone 6 Review

We love the size of the new iPhone 6, battery life, upgraded speakers, more reliable Touch ID and the ability to make mobile payments with Apple Pay. Two big drawbacks are the slippery design (that almost requires the use of an iPhone 6 case) and the durability, as it is easy to scratch or ding. In our iPhone 6 review editor Adam Mills wrote, “The iPhone 6 is one of the best phones on the market and the iPhone that most people will want to buy.”

iPhone 6 Plus

The iPhone 6 Plus is a big phone, bigger than the Galaxy Note 4, but it finally delivers a what iPhone users have been asking for — a huge screen that is great for playing games and watching movies or sports. The 5.5-inch display finally delivers a full 1,920 x 1,080 resolution like most HDTVs, and it looks wonderful. The speaker is much better and the iPhone 6 Plus battery life is outstanding.

Read: iPhone 6 Plus Review

The iPhone 6 Plus and iPhone 6 both deliver a great camera, and the iPhone 6 Plus includes optical image stabilization, which helps with low light performance.

The design is slippery, like the iPhone 6, and this is a device that is best used with two hands. It is not the best iPhone for every user, but it is easily one of the best smartphones of 2014.

Samsung Galaxy Note 4

Best of 2014 - Galaxy Note 4 review

The Galaxy Note 4 is an amazing smartphone.

The Samsung Galaxy Note 4 fixes almost every complaint we had about the Note 3, delivering an incredible package that users cannot ignore. The Galaxy Note 4 packs in a 5.7-inch display with a 2,560 x 1,440 resolution that blasts the iPhone 6 Plus out of the water, and this display looks beautiful. Even with a huge screen the phone isn’t any bigger than the iPhone 6 Plus and it still delivers great battery life.

Read: Galaxy Note 4 Review

Samsung finally packs a metal frame into the phone and also improves the S Pen with an incremental boost to handwriting. On the software side, Samsung trims down to apps and features that people will actually use instead of focusing on niche items.

LG G3

The LG G3 delivers a complete package for smartphone users.

The LG G3 delivers a complete package for smartphone users.

After years playing second fiddle, the LG G3 arrived this summer to stake a claim as one of the best smartphones of 2014 with smart software, a big beautiful 2k display and an unbelievably slim design. LG packs a 5.5-inch 2,560 x 1,440 resolution display into a deceptively small body with a curved back that helps this phone slide right into your hand when you pick it up.

Read: LG G3 Review

Gotta Be Mobile publisher Xavier Lanier sums up why the G3 is one of the best smartphones of 2014: “The LG G3’s ease of use, outstanding camera and  outstanding display earned this device a Gotta Be Mobile Editors’ Choice Award. It is the best flagship Android phone for iPhone switchers who still want simplicity and don’t want to be drowned in feature bloat.”

Moto X (2014)

The Moto X (2014) is a perfect combination of savvy design and smart software.

The Moto X (2014) is a perfect combination of savvy design and smart software.

Motorola delivers a solid and much needed improvement to the original Moto X and earns a spot on the best smartphones of 2014 thanks to a great design, improved display and smart, intuitive software that continues to deliver the best mobile notifications on any phone while adding in smart, touch free voice control options.

Read: Moto X 2014 Review

With a 5.2-inch 1080P display and a curved back the Moto X 2014 is still usable with one-hand and the metal frame provides a premium design. Motorola still needs to find a way to deliver an amazing and consistent camera in the Moto X. It takes good photos, but they are not as sharp as the iPhone 6.

The Moto X shows notifications on the screen, instead of using an LED, so you can see at a glance if it is important enough to act on. You can also set a custom wake up command and use voice control without touching the device.

Best Tablets 2014

iPad Air 2

The iPad Air 2 is an amazing tablet.

The iPad Air 2 is an amazing tablet.

Apple barely refreshed its iPad mini lineup in 2014 and focused on the full-size iPad. The iPad Air 2 is the best overall tablet money can buy and where Apple clearly put its attention in 2014. Apple managed to slim down its flagship tablet by almost an ounce, putting a full-sized iPad under the one-pound mark for the first time.  That might not sound like too big of a deal, but combine that with a 20% thinner profile and the new iPad Air 2 is a lot easier to handle with one hand than the original iPad Air.

What makes the iPad Air 2 the best overall tablet isn’t necessarily its updated specs however. The iPad Air 2 holds a strong lead against the competition when it comes to ecosystem. There are countless accessories and cases designed specifically for the iPad Air 2. App developers continue to make iPad apps before Android tablet apps. And while the iPad mini 3 is a great compact tablet, the introduction of the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus made tiny iPads less relevant.

Samsung Galaxy Tab S 8.4

The display on the Galaxy Tab S 8.4 is stunning.

The display on the Galaxy Tab S 8.4 is stunning.

The Samsung Galaxy Tab S 8.4 is a thin and light tablet with the best tablet screen we saw in 2014. The Super AMOLED display packs an 8.4-inch 1,560 x 1,600 resolution display into a very portable tablet design. The display is simply stunning to look at, especially considering how easy this tablet is to hold and take wherever you go.

Read: Samsung Galaxy Tab S 8.4 Review

The back of the tablet shares the same band-aid-like look and plastic material as the Galaxy S5, but with a 6.6mm thickness and the light weight construction, the screen overcomes this drawback. Samsung still packs a lot of bloatware on this device, so prepare to remove and disable that.

Lenovo Yoga 2 Pro Tablet

The Yoga Tablet 2 Pro launched just in time for the 2014 holiday shopping season and is the best entertainment tablet you can buy. Thankfully, you don’t have to spend a whole lot of money to score this killer tablet. With an MSRP of just $499, it is perhaps the best bargain in the tablet universe today. The 13.3 inch display is the same size as many laptops, dwarfing the iPad Air 2’s display. When that isn’t big enough to enjoy your favorite movies you can simply point the tablet at the nearest wall, dim the lights and flip on the built-in projector. Lenovo states that the projector can produce an image up to 50″, measured diagonally, but we’ve been able to watch movies with the Yoga 2 Pro Tablet with a projection of up to 110″.

The Yoga 2 Pro Tablet looks, feels and sounds like it should cost a lot more than $499. Everything from the built-in metal kickstand to the stereo speakers and subwoofer scream premium. If you’re looking for the ultimate entertainment tablet, the Yoga Tablet 2 Pro is it.

Best Laptops of 2014

ThinkPad Carbon X1

The display, design and features set the ThinkPad Carbon 2014 above the rest.

The display, design and features set the ThinkPad Carbon 2014 above the rest.

The ThinkPad Carbon X1 is a thin and light Windows notebook that is great for the workplace or for power users at home who want a dazzling display, adaptive keyboard and a touch screen to interact with Windows 8. The design is top-notch with Carbon Fiber and MILSPEC ratings to handle dust, altitude, vibration and shock. It weighs in at just 2.83 pounds and is 0.7-inch thick.

Read: ThinkPad Carbon X1 2014 Review

Here’s what we had to say about the Carbon X1 display during our review: “This display looks wonderful, almost as if it is a printed page or a poster instead of a screen. While this is not a matte display it is as close as I’ve seen on a touch screen notebook. While using this in my office I don’t see the reflections from overhead lights like on a glossy display. This display looks best indoors, but will work outside with the brightness cranked up.”

MacBook Pro Retina

The MacBook Pro Retina delivers a great screen and enough power for portable productivity.

The MacBook Pro Retina delivers a great screen and enough power for portable productivity.

Apple’s MacBook Pro with Retina Display is not drastically new for 2014, but it remains the go-to laptop for Mac users who want power, portability and a Retina display. The MacBook Air is a great notebook with incredible battery life, but the MacBook Pro Retina’s display is clearly a step up for users who stare at their screen all day.

Read: MacBook Pro Retina Review

Although the battery life isn’t as long-lasting as a MacBook Air, the MacBook Pro with Retina Display battery lasts a full work day with a little bit of smart usage and the Macbook Pro Retina is better at processing video, editing photos and other processor heavy tasks.

Best Accessories & Gadgets of 2014

Leather iPhone 6 & 6 Plus Case

Apple iPhone 6 Plus Leather Case Review - 1

The leather iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus case from Apple is the best case you can find for the new iPhones. The case fits the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus perfectly, adding enough grip to easily hang on to the iPhone without adding any noticeable bulk. The case is available in a variety of colors and it holds up after months of use showing minimal wear that adds to the character of the case. iPhone 6 Plus Leather case review.

OlloClip for iPhone 6 & Galaxy S5

olloclip for iphone 6

The Olloclip for iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus makes macro, wide-angle and fisheye photography possible.

The Olloclip is a small attachment that clips on to your iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus or, if you choose the right version, the Galaxy S5. This adds a 4-in-1 lens that mounts to your iPhone. With this new lens you gain fisheye lens, wide-angle lens and two Macro options including 10x and 15x. The iPhone 6 & iPhone 6 Plus Olloclip slides on over the camera and the Galaxy S5 Olloclip snaps on to the phone. Users can easily switch between lenses and carry the lens in a pocket or bag while not in use. Olloclip iPhone 6 review.

Plantronics BackBeat Pro

The Plantronics BackBeat Pro headphones are an amazing value at $250.

The Plantronics BackBeat Pro headphones are an amazing value at $250.

The Plantronics BackBeat Pro headphones sound great, connect over Bluetooth and are noise canceling so you can tune out annoying sounds. The battery life on these headphones is insane, lasting up to two weeks with an hour or two of daily use and they charge over MicroUSB when you need to top them off. Sensors pause music when you remove the headphones and further conserve battery life. The BackBeat Pro headphones are comfortable to wear and the larger ear cups include controls for music, volume and phone calls. The sound quality is great, but it does struggle with deep, continuous bass in songs like Kanye West’s Love Lockdown. Plantronics BackBear Pro review.

Zagg InvisibleShield Glass

Zagg InvisibleShield Glass Review - 4

The Zagg InvisibleShield Glass screen protector sits perfectly on top of your smartphone to deliver a layer of protection from drops and when you inevitably smack the screen with the edge of a table or your keys. Installation is incredibly easy, without any air bubbles left behind and there is no change to the quality of your screen after installing it.

In the past two months the Zagg InvisibleShield Glass saved our iPhone 6 and another iPhone 6 Plus from breaking due to drops. Zagg will replacea  broken or worn screen protector if it does break. Read Zagg InvisibleShield Glass review.

Bose Mini Soundlink

Bose Mini Soundlink

After spending a good part of the year searching for the best Bluetooth speaker, we discovered the Bose Mini Soundlink. This is a small and portable Bluetooth speaker with great sound, even at high volumes while outside. The battery life is stellar and for the price you will not find a better portable Bluetooth speaker.

Amazon Fire Stick

Amazon-Fire-TV-Stick-1

The Amazon Fire Stick upgrades your HDTV to a smart TV for $39 and it includes a remote control that competitors like the ChromeCast don’t. This small device connects to a HDMI port on the back of your HDTV, so you don’t need space for a $99 box on your entertainment stand. If you are an Amazon Prime member you can watch a lot of free content through Amazon Prime Instant video and the device also supports other apps like Netflix if you don’t use Amazon Prime. Amazon Fire TV Stick review.

Belkin Thunderbolt 2 Express Dock HD

Belkin Thunderbolt 2 Express Dock HD Review

If you use a MacBook Air or MacBook Pro with a monitor and other accessories in your home or office and still take the Macbook everywhere you go, the Belkin ThunderBolt 2 Express HD is the accessory you’ve been waiting for. Connect your MacBook Air or MacBook Pro to this with a Thunderbolt cable and then connect your monitors, hard drives, speakers and other accessories to the Belkin Thunderbolt 2 Express HD. Now you can use all your accessories and still go mobile with just one cable to deal with. Belkin ThunderBolt 2 Express HD review.

ZAGG Slim Book Keyboard

ZAGG SLIMBOOK

The ZAGG Slim Book iPad & iPad mini keyboard is the most versatile iPad keyboard that we’ve seen. The iPad sits in a small case that offers protection even when you don’t need the keyboard, and it clips to the keyboard for a total of four modes. The keyboard is backlit with a two-year battery life claim from ZAGG. You can use the iPad in typing mode, in a video mode with the keyboard behind the screen and book mode in addition to the standard case mode.

Office for iPhone & iPad

How to Use Microsoft Office on iPhone (20)

Microsoft finally delivered Office for iPhone and iPad this year, allowing users to edit and create Word, Excel and PowerPoint on the iPhone or iPad for increased mobile productivity. This is not the first time that users could edit Office documents on the iPhone or iPad, but it is the first time office users can access the documents in the same format and tool that they use in their office.

Asana

We’ve been through dozens of task management tools and were never fully satisfied until we discovered Asana. The tool is as simple as you need it to be and it can grow with you. We love the team task management and project management features that keep users accountable and everyone in the loop. There is also a free option that lets a single user manage their tasks or for a small group inside a bigger organization to use this tool to stay organized even if the whole company doesn’t join up.

Moto 360

Moto 360 Hands On - 2

The Moto 360 is the best smartwatch of 2014. With a premium steel and leather design and smart notifications it remains a watch that we wear with our variety of Android devices. The circular display and plethora of watch faces means it can work with any outfit or occasion and the battery life is more than enough to last a full day of heavy use. The Moto 360 is a constant source of attention when others notice the crisp watch and striking design. Moto 360 review.

Samsung Curved 4K Ultra HD TV

Samsung Curved 4K TV

The Samsung UN55HU7250 is a 4K smart TV with a gorgeous display, voice control that works every time and smart TV apps that are good enough to replace your Apple TV or Fire TV. We are still waiting for a plethora of 4K content, but with M Go, Netflix and now Amazon Prime Instant there are options to watch, rent and buy 4K content on the 55-inch Curved Samsung Ultra HD TV. The curve does make the viewing experience more immersive if you are close enough to the TV and the picture quality is the best I’ve seen, even when upconverting. We use the smart apps to watch Netflix, Hulu Plus faster and more reliably than on the Apple TV. There are apps to add features and even the option to pair Bluetooth headphones to the TV. The remote control is also a pointer and you can mirror your phone or tablet screen to the TV.

Distil Union Wally Wallet Case

This is an excellent iPhone 6 wallet case.

This is an excellent iPhone 6 wallet case.

The Distil Union Wally Wallet case for the iPhone 6 is a slim case that adds room for three cards on a small leather holder on the back of the iPhone 6. This model snaps on to the side of the iPhone 6 to protect the phone from small drops and includes a small wallet on the back that includes a pull tab to access your cards. Unlike plastic iPhone 6 wallet cases, this one looks awesome, works great and is only $50. There is also a stick on version that is thinner for the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. Distil Union Wally iPhone 6 wallet case review.

Harman Kardon Aura

Harman Kardon introduced the almost-invisible Aura omnidirectional speaker in 2014. Since most of the speaker is transparent, you can place the Harman Kardon Aura in plain view on top of a countertop without it creating an eyesore like most speaker systems do. At first glance, the speaker doesn’t look like it has much to it, but it can fill large rooms with clean, clear sound. The speaker’s bass is much more powerful than you’d think.  Yes, you really can do away with those complex audio systems and tangle of speaker wire without missing them. While there are a lot of nice Bluetooth and WiFi speakers on the market, none blend into a variety of settings as well as the Harman Kardon Aura.

Best Cameras of 2014

GoPro Hero 4 Black 

Just when you think GoPro footage looks as good as it’s going to get, GoPro goes and doubles performance and remains atop the action camera market. While you can save some cash by buying a more affordable GoPro camera, the results we’ve seen out of the HERO4 Black are worth every penny of the $499 asking price.  Thanks to improved editing tools and mobile apps, it’s easier than ever to produce professional-looking photos and videos with an action camera. The GoPro HERO4 Black captures 4K video at 30fps and 12MP stills at 30 frames per second. The fact that GoPro can manage to sell this kind of technology for $499 is almost as stunning as the footage in the above highlight reel.

Sony RX100 MIII

Sony RX100 MIII

Sony made the best camera you can fit in your pocket even better. The RX 100 M3 is pricey at $799, but it’s well worth the money.  Its 20.1 megapixel sensor measures 1″, allowing for fantastic image quality, even in low light.  It rivals much bulkier camera systems, including those with interchangeable lenses.  New in 2014 for the Sony RX100 line in 2014 is a pop-up electronic viewfinder and a tilting 3″ LCD that can rotate 180-degrees so you can take selfies that have so much detail you’ll want to blur them before exposing your Facebook friends to what’s inside your pores.

Yes, professionals and serious amateurs can take better pictures with more expensive and complex cameras than the RX100 MIII, but this is the best camera the average person can handle easily without having to take photography lessons.

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Apple

8 Things to Know About the iPhone 6s iOS 14 Update

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The iOS 14 update is out of beta testing which means iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus users around the world can now download Apple’s new operating system.

Apple’s decision to push iOS 14 to the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus came as a bit of a surprise given their age. They were released all the way back in 2015.

The company’s decision means iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus users now have another full year of software support to look forward to. That might convince some people to skip the iPhone 12 and hold onto their aging phone for another year or more.

The iPhone 6s’ iOS 14 update is a big one. The new operating system comes with a long list of changes including new features, under-the-hood improvements, and security patches.

Many users have already made the jump to iOS 14 which means we’re starting to get feedback about the software’s performance. So far, a lot of it is good, but we’ve also heard about various bugs and performance issues.

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If you decide to install iOS 14 on your iPhone, note that it requires a ton of free space on your internal storage. It’s a 2GB+ download.

If you’re running an older version of iOS on your iPhone 6s or iPhone 6s Plus, your iOS 14 upgrade could be larger because the features and fixes from iOS updates you skipped are baked in.

With that in mind, we want to take you through the most important things to know, right now, about the iPhone 6s’ iOS 14 update.

Our walkthrough will take you through the software’s initial problems, the downgrade status, the iOS 14 jailbreak, and the iPhone 6 iOS 14 update’s performance.

We’ll start with the software’s performance. We’ve been testing iOS 14 on the iPhone 6s update for a short time and here’s what we’ve learned.

iPhone 6s iOS 14 Impressions & Performance

We recently installed the iOS 14 update on an iPhone 6s that was previous running iOS 13.7. The download and installation took quite awhile, more than 20 minutes, so that’s what you should expect if you decide to install it this week.

So far, the software’s performance has been excellent. iOS 14 feels faster than iOS 13. Animations and transitions are snappy and apps open up quickly.

While the user interface would sometimes lag on iOS 13, that hasn’t been the case on iOS 14. We haven’t noticed any lag in problem areas like Control Center, Notification Center, or the keyboard.

We’ve only been using the software for a short time, but battery life is stable. We haven’t seen any abnormal battery drain and that’s a good sign right out of the gates.

Our core applications, which include Slack, Asana, Spotify, Chrome, and Gmail, are all stable. The Netflix crashed once while trying to watch a show, but we’re not going to pin it on iOS 14 just yet.

Developers are rolling out iOS 14 support updates so if you’re having issues with one of your apps, make sure you’re running the latest version.

As of right now, iOS 14 is running smoothly on our phone. We haven’t run into any game-changing performance issues and we’ll let you know if that changes in the days ahead.

Right now we’re recommending iOS 14 to most iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus users. If you’re feeling leery, have a look at our reasons to, and not to, install iOS 14 right now.

You Should Prepare for iOS 14

If you plan to install iOS 14 in the near future, make sure you prepare yourself, and the device, for the move.

While some of you might see a performance boost after moving up from iOS 13, others will run into trouble. This is why it’s important to prepare.

If you don’t know where to start, we’ve released a pre-installation guide that will take you step-by-step through the process we typically use before we install new iOS software on our iPhones. If you’re new to the iPhone and iOS, or you just want to play it safe, it could help.

At the very least you’ll want to make sure all of your data is backed up before you move your phone to the new operating system.

iPhone 6s iOS 14 Problems

We haven’t run into any major issues during our time on iOS 14, but many users have.

The current list of iOS 14 problems includes abnormal battery drain, UI lag, issues with first and third-party apps, Touch ID issues, touchscreen problems, Exchange issues, Wi-Fi issues, Bluetooth problems, and more.

This is only the beginning. You can expect the list to grow as more iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus users upgrade to the new firmware.

If you’re nervous about the current state of iOS 14 problems, you might want to hang back and wait for Apple’s next batch of bug fixes. They should arrive soon.

How to Fix iPhone 6s iOS 14 Problems

If you run into an issue on iOS 14 you might be able to fix the problem(s) on your own.

If you don’t know where to start, our list of fixes for the most common iOS 14 problems is a great place to start.

If you’re noticing horrendous battery life after the move to iOS 14, our tips should help you improve battery life going forward. And if you’re experiencing bad performance (lag, slow download speeds, etc), take a look at our guide to fixing bad iOS performance.

iOS 13 Downgrade Open

If you move your iPhone 6s or iPhone 6s Plus to iOS 14, and you run into bugs or performance issues, you could try moving back to iOS 13.

Apple is currently signing on iOS 13.7 which means you can drop your iPhone’s software back in an attempt to improve its performance.

The company won’t sign on iOS 13 forever so if you really want to get your phone off of iOS 14, you’ll need to drop back soon. Once Apple stops signing on iOS 13.7, there won’t be a way back to the previous operating system.

If you’re unfamiliar with the downgrade process, take a look at our guide.

iPhone 6s iOS 14 Update: What’s New

The iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus get a pretty stacked version of iOS 14. While the devices do miss out on a few features, the key features are all there.

Some of the highlights include Widgets on the home screen, improvements to Messages and Maps, the new Translate app, and a laundry list of changes to Siri.

We’ve put together a guide that will take you through some of iOS 14’s best features and it’s worth a look if you haven’t dug into the new operating system yet.

If you’re moving up from an older version of iOS 13 you’ll, again, get the features and fixes from the updates you skipped. We also have a guide that goes over the latest iOS 13 features and you should check it out if you’re running old software.

What’s Next for the iPhone 6s & iPhone 6s Plus

If your device is struggling on iOS 14, or you’re leery about upgrading, you won’t have to wait long for Apple’s first batch of bug fixes.

Apple recently told CNET that it is “aware of an issue that can impact default email and browser settings in iOS 14 and iPadOS 14 and that a “fix will be available to users in a software update.” It didn’t call a version out by name.

The company recently confirmed an iOS 14.2 update and there’s also been chatter about an iOS 14.1 release alongside the iPhone 12 series in October. We could also see a fast iOS 14.0.1 release.

One way or another, we should see a new version of iOS 14 roll out soon and that’s great news for those of you looking to squash bugs or performance issues.

iPhone 6s iOS 14 Jailbreak

Developers have released an iOS 13 jailbreak tool that’s compatible with iOS 13.5 and older versions of iOS 13. However, we haven’t seen anything for iOS 14.

Earlier this year the developers behind the “unc0ver” jailbreaking tool released version 5.0.0. It’s compatible with iOS 13.5 and most versions of iOS that fall between iOS 13.5 and iOS 11.0.

It doesn’t work with iOS 12.3-12.3.2, iOS 12.4.2-12.4.5, or iOS 13.7-iOS 13.5.1. It doesn’t work with the current version of iOS 14 either.

We don’t know when or even if we’ll see a public iOS 14 jailbreak tool so keep your eyes peeled for new information as we push deeper into the month.

For more on the iOS 13 jailbreak, head here.

4 Reasons Not to Install iOS 14 & 11 Reasons You Should

Install iOS 14 for Better Security

Install iOS 14 for Better Security

If security is important to you, think about installing the iOS 14 update right away.

iOS 14 brings 11 new security patches to your iPhone. If you're interested in the exact nature of these improvements, you can read about them over on Apple's website.

If you skipped iOS 13.7 or any older versions of iOS 13, you'll get the security patches from those updates with your iOS 14 update. 

In addition to those patches, iOS 14 comes with some security and privacy upgrades including improvements to Home/HomeKit and Safari. 

For instance in Safari, you can now tap the Privacy Report button to better understand how websites handle your privacy.

With iOS 14 on board you can now get information on the App Store that will help you understand the privacy practices of apps before you download them. 

There is also a new recording indicator that will appear at the top of your screen whenever an app is using your microphone or camera. You can see if an app has used them recently in Control Center.

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Editorials

Cyberpunk 2077 PC Requirements: 3 Things to Know

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While it would be great if Cyberpunk 2077 ran beautifully on every single PC, that obviously won’t be the case. CD Projekt Red has finally shared the game’s PC requirements and we want to go over the most important details and show you how to check if your computer meets the threshold.

A lot of companies wait until just before a game’s released to unveil the PC requirements. CD Projekt Red isn’t your typical company though.

The Cyberpunk 2077 release date doesn’t land until November, but the company has already released the game’s minimum and recommended PC requirements. This is great news if you’ve been thinking about putting in a pre-order.

If you plan to buy the game for a console, you have nothing to worry about. Open up the game, install it and you’re good to go. Cyberpunk 2077 for PC is a different beast because your PC needs to meet certain hardware specifications.

Today we want to share three important details regarding the Cyberpunk 2077 PC requirements. If you’ve been thinking about buying the game for PC, here’s what you need to know before you pick up the game for yourself or someone else.

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Cyberpunk 2077 PC Requirements

First, we’ll start with the requirements themselves. If you’re familiar with your PC’s internals, you can simply check out this list and compare them to your specs.

Cyberpunk 2077 Minimum Requirements:

  • OS: Windows 7 or 10
  • Processor: Intel Core i5-3570K or AMD FX-8310
  • Memory: 8 GB RAM
  • Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780 or AMD Radeon RX 470
  • DirectX: Version 12
  • Storage: 70 GB available space
  • Additional Notes: SSD recommended

Cyberpunk 2077 Recommended Specs:

  • OS: Windows 10
  • Processor: Intel Core i7-4790 or AMD Ryzen 3 3200G
  • Memory: 12 GB RAM
  • Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 or AMD Radeon R9 Fury
  • DirectX: Version 12
  • Storage: 70 GB available space
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Will Cyberpunk 2077 Run On My PC?

You can use a simple tool to quickly find out if your computer is capable of running Cyberpunk 2077.

Sites like Can You Run It and PCGameBenchmark provide a quick and easy way to determine if your PC meets the minimum and/or recommended specs.

Some of you might need to upgrade your video card. Many others will meet the thresholds with ease. If you’re unfamiliar with your CPUs internal specifications, or you don’t consider yourself an expert, these tools will save you sometime.

What If My PC Doesn’t Meet Cyberpunk 2077 Specs?

We can’t tell you exactly will happen if your PC fails to meet the minimum requirements, but you can count on horrible performance that will, in a lot of cases, make the game unplayable.

If you want to have the best possible experience on PC, you’ll want to make sure your computer meets the recommended specifications.

While Cyberpunk 2077 will work on PC’s that barely meet the minimum requirements, you probably won’t be able to run the game on the highest settings.

If you barely meet the threshold, be on the look out for deals on PC equipment as we approach the game’s release date.

6 Reasons to Pre-Order Cyberpunk 2077 & 4 Reasons to Wait

Pre-Order for These Bonuses

Pre-Order for These Bonuses

If you pre-order a copy of Cyberpunk 2077, you'll get some nice bonuses. 

Everyone who pre-orders a copy of the game will get a collection of physical and digital items. Here's what you can expect if you buy a copy before the release date:

Physical Items

  • Case with game discs
  • World Compendium detailing the game's setting and lore
  • Postcards from Night City
  • Map of Night City
  • Stickers

Digital Items

  • Game soundtrack
  • Art booklet featuring a selection of art from the game
  • Cyberpunk 2020 sourcebook
  • Wallpapers for desktop and mobile

There are also some unique pre-order bonuses through retailers like GameStop and GOG. 

If you pre-order through GameStop you get a Samurai Medallion. The retailer says this offer is only available to PowerUp Rewards Members.

If you pre-order through GOG you get an exclusive digital game booklet, additional wallpapers and avatars, print quality posters, and 30% off official Cyberpunk 2077 merch store.

If any of these sound interesting to you, think about pre-ordering.

Last update on 2020-09-21. This post may contain affiliate links. Click here to read our disclosure policy for more details. Images via Amazon API

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Editorials

6 Reasons to Pre-Order Cyberpunk 2077 & 4 Reasons to Wait

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Cyberpunk 2077 is almost here. We have an official release date and retailers are taking pre-orders. While some of you might want to buy a copy right now, many others are better off waiting.

It took awhile, Cyberpunk 2077 was originally confirmed all the way back in 2012, but we’re finally inching closer to the game’s release on Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Windows PC, Google Stadia, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X, and Xbox Series S.

If you’re just catching wind of it, the game is a sequel to Mike Pondsmith’s pen and paper RPG Cyberpunk 2020. Cyberpunk 2020 was released all the way back in 1988.

CD Projekt Red’s taking its time, but fans of Cyberpunk and The Witcher series are hoping the developer can recreate the magic it delivered back in 2015 with The Witcher 3.

The developer initially confirmed the release date for April 16th, but decided to push it to September 17th to add some additional polish.

Unfortunately, the game got delayed again and the new Cyberpunk 2077 release date is now set for November 19th. Fortunately, it sounds like this is the final delay. CD Projekt Red says it doesn’t expect to push the game’s release date any further than November.

If you’re looking to buy Cyberpunk 2077 for Google Stadia, it looks like the release date might come a little later. CD Projekt Red says the game will debut on Google’s platform “by the end of the year.”

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Retailers like Amazon and Best Buy, and GameStop are taking pre-orders for two versions of the game. There is the standard $60 version and there’s also an expensive Collector’s Edition that comes with a bunch of extras.

Now that we know more about the direction the game is taking, some of you, particularly those of you who are fond of CD Projekt Red’s games, might be thinking about pre-ordering a copy.

In this guide we’re going to take you through the best reasons to pre-order Cyberpunk 2077 right now. We’ll also take you through some reasons to think about holding off for a few more weeks or longer.

Pre-Order for These Bonuses

Pre-Order for These Bonuses

If you pre-order a copy of Cyberpunk 2077, you'll get some nice bonuses. 

Everyone who pre-orders a copy of the game will get a collection of physical and digital items. Here's what you can expect if you buy a copy before the release date:

Physical Items

  • Case with game discs
  • World Compendium detailing the game's setting and lore
  • Postcards from Night City
  • Map of Night City
  • Stickers

Digital Items

  • Game soundtrack
  • Art booklet featuring a selection of art from the game
  • Cyberpunk 2020 sourcebook
  • Wallpapers for desktop and mobile

There are also some unique pre-order bonuses through retailers like GameStop and GOG. 

If you pre-order through GameStop you get a Samurai Medallion. The retailer says this offer is only available to PowerUp Rewards Members.

If you pre-order through GOG you get an exclusive digital game booklet, additional wallpapers and avatars, print quality posters, and 30% off official Cyberpunk 2077 merch store.

If any of these sound interesting to you, think about pre-ordering.

Last update on 2020-09-21. This post may contain affiliate links. Click here to read our disclosure policy for more details. Images via Amazon API

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Android

Samsung Galaxy Android 11 Update Info (2020)

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With the official Android 11 roll out from Google underway, we want to take you through everything you should know right now Samsung’s plans for Galaxy phones and tablets.

In September, Google pushed its next operating system, Android 11, to Pixel users. That’s huge news for the Pixel community and it’s also big news for those who own other Android-powered devices. It means an official release is getting closer for those phones and tablets.

With Android 11 rolling out and Samsung’s Android 10 roll out slowing down, Galaxy smartphone and tablet users are starting to think about the future.

While some Android OEMs started talking about Android 11 months ago, Samsung remained silent. That changed after the launch of the Galaxy Note 20.

Samsung’s confirmed early Android 11 plans. And thanks to that information along with rumors and traditions, we can put together an overview for those of you curious about Android 11.

In this guide we’re going to take you through what you should know about Android 11 if you currently own, or if you’re planning to buy a Galaxy S20, Galaxy Note 20, Galaxy Note 10, Galaxy S10, Galaxy Note 9, Galaxy S9, Galaxy S8, Galaxy Note 8, or another Galaxy device.

We’ll take you through what we know about Samsung’s version of Android 11. We’ll take you through what we know about the release date and we’ll outline which devices will get an upgrade to the new version of Android.

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Let’s start with what’s coming out before the official version of Android 11. Samsung is still rolling out Android 10 updates and it’s also pushing monthly updates to its stable of Galaxy phones and tablets.

Samsung Galaxy September Update

Samsung’s September update is pushing out right now.

The update is rolling out to the Galaxy S10, Galaxy S10+, Galaxy S10e, Galaxy Note 10, Galaxy Note 10+, Galaxy S9, Galaxy S9+, Galaxy Note 9, Galaxy Note 8, Galaxy A70, Galaxy A50, Galaxy A21s, Galaxy M01s, Galaxy M31, Galaxy Tab S5e, Galaxy Tab Active Pro, and Galaxy Tab S6 and you can expect it to hit more devices in the near future.

The company’s September update includes a ton of patches including 15 fixes that are for issues related to Samsung’s own software.

If you own a Galaxy Tab S6, your upgrade should include software features from the new Galaxy Tab S7. Namely, Wireless DeX and the ability to request Wi-Fi passwords from people on your network if they’re in your contacts list.

If you want to learn more about Samsung’s September security update, head on over to the company’s website.

As a reminder, here’s the current breakdown of Samsung’s current Android security update coverage:

Current Models for Monthly Security Updates

  • Galaxy Fold, Galaxy Z Fold2, Galaxy Z Fold2 5G, Galaxy Z Flip, Galaxy Z Flip 5G
  • Galaxy S9, Galaxy S9+, Galaxy S10, Galaxy S10+, Galaxy S10e, Galaxy S10 5G, Galaxy S10 Lite, Galaxy S20, Galaxy S20 5G, Galaxy S20+, Galaxy S20+ 5G, Galaxy S20 Ultra, Galaxy S20 Ultra 5G
  • Galaxy Note8, Galaxy Note9, Galaxy Note10, Galaxy Note10 5G, Galaxy Note10+, Galaxy Note10+ 5G, Galaxy Note10 Lite, Galaxy Note20, Galaxy Note20 5G, Galaxy Note20 Ultra, Galaxy Note20 Ultra 5G
  • Enterprise Models: Galaxy A8 (2018), Galaxy A50, Galaxy XCover4s, Galaxy XCover FieldPro, Galaxy XCover Pro

Current Models for Quarterly Security Updates

  • Galaxy S8, Galaxy S8+, Galaxy S8 Active
  • Galaxy A2 Core, Galaxy A5 (2017), Galaxy A7 (2018), Galaxy A8s, Galaxy A9 (2018)
  • Galaxy A10, Galaxy A10e, Galaxy A10s, Galaxy A20, Galaxy A20e, Galaxy A20s, Galaxy A30, Galaxy A30s, Galaxy A40, Galaxy A50s, Galaxy A60, Galaxy A70, Galaxy A70s, Galaxy A80, Galaxy A90 5G
  • Galaxy A01, Galaxy A01 Core, Galaxy A11, Galaxy A21, Galaxy A21s, Galaxy A31, Galaxy A41, Galaxy A51, Galaxy A51 5G, Galaxy A71, Galaxy A71 5G
  • Galaxy J4+, Galaxy J4 Core, Galaxy J6+
  • Galaxy M10, Galaxy M10s, Galaxy M20, Galaxy M30, Galaxy M30s, Galaxy M40
  • Galaxy M01, Galaxy M11, Galaxy M21, Galaxy M31, Galaxy M31s, Galaxy M51
  • Galaxy Tab A 10.1 (2019), Galaxy Tab A 8 (2019), Galaxy Tab A 8 Plus (2019), Galaxy Tab A 8.4 (2020), Galaxy Tab A7, Galaxy Tab Active2, Galaxy Tab Active Pro
  • Galaxy Tab S5e, Galaxy Tab S6, Galaxy Tab S6 5G, Galaxy Tab S6 Lite, Galaxy Tab S7, Galaxy Tab S7+, Galaxy View2
  • W20 5G

Current Models for Other Regular Security Updates

  • Galaxy S8 Lite, Galaxy Note FE
  • Galaxy A3 (2017), Galaxy A6, Galaxy A6+, Galaxy A7 (2017), Galaxy A8+ (2018), Galaxy A8 Star
  • Galaxy J2 Core, Galaxy J3 (2017), Galaxy J3 Pop, Galaxy J3 Top, Galaxy J4, Galaxy J5 (2017), Galaxy J5 Prime, Galaxy J6, Galaxy J7 (2017), Galaxy J7 Duo, Galaxy J7 Prime, Galaxy J7 Prime2, Galaxy J7 Pop, Galaxy J7 Top, Galaxy J7 Max, Galaxy J7 Neo, Galaxy J7+, Galaxy J8
  • Galaxy Tab A (2017), Galaxy Tab A 10.5 (2018), Galaxy Tab S3, Galaxy Tab S4, Galaxy Tab E 8 Refresh

So while devices like the Galaxy S9 and Galaxy Note 9 probably won’t get Android 11, they will get security patches and bug fixes for the foreseeable future.

The company’s pushed One UI 2.1, the interface that arrived on board the Galaxy S20 series, to a number of devices including the Galaxy S10, Galaxy Note 10, Galaxy Fold, Galaxy Tab S6, Galaxy Tab S5e, Galaxy Tab S4, Galaxy A51, Galaxy S9, Galaxy S9+, Galaxy Note 9, Galaxy M01s, and Galaxy M31.

These updates brought a variety of changes including:

  • Quick Share
  • Music Share
  • Single Take
  • AR Zone
  • Pro Video Recording

That said, the One UI 2.1 update for older devices was missing at least one feature that’s present on Galaxy S20 models: Bixby Routines.

The company’s also released another version of One UI, dubbed One UI 2.5, that brings a number of improvements to Galaxy devices. The software debuted on board the Galaxy Note 20.

Samsung is pushing One UI 2.5 to the Galaxy S20, Galaxy S20+, Galaxy S20 Ultra, Galaxy Z Flip, Galaxy Note 10, Galaxy Note 10+, Galaxy Note 10 Lite, Galaxy S10, Galaxy S10+, Galaxy S10e, Galaxy S10 Lite, and Galaxy Tab S6 with more releases on the way.

The company is also planning to bring One UI 2.5 to the Galaxy S9, Galaxy S9+, Galaxy Note 9, and Galaxy Fold. It’s unclear when these updates will roll out.

One UI 2.5 is a fairly minor update, but it does bring a few notable changes including the ability for your device to remember the angle you used for your last selfie.

The camera app will also remember the last shooting mode you used (video, etc). There’s also support for full-screen navigation gestures in third-party launchers.

Samsung Galaxy Android 11: What’s New

Samsung’s version of Android 11 will look a lot different than the version Google releases for Pixel devices because it will utilize the company’s new One UI 3.0 user interface.

While we have some information, we don’t have the full picture because Samsung’s version of Android 11 is still in development. That said, it should bring a lot of Google’s features with it.

Google’s version of Android 11 includes features like:

  • Improved Quick Replies.
  • Mute notification sounds & vibrations during video capture recording.
  • Chat Bubbles.
  • Native Screen Recording.
  • Bluetooth improvements for headphones.
  • Memory Input/Output improvements.
  • Biometric Authentication Strength
  • Low Latency support.
  • Variable refresh rates.
  • Resume on Reboot.
  • And a whole lot more.

You can learn more about Android 11 on Google’s website.

As for Samsung’s version of Android 11 with One UI 3.0, we now have a full change log thanks to the company’s beta program.

As expected, the software is loaded up with changes. Here’s the first Galaxy Android 11/One UI 3.0 change log from the beta, courtesy of XDA-Developers:

Home screen

  • Touch and hold an app to add an associated widget.
  • Turn the screen off by double-tapping on an empty are of the Home screen. You can turn this on in Settings > Advanced features > Motion and gestures.

Lock screen

  • Dynamic Lock screen now has more categories,, and you can select more than one.
  • Lock screen widgets are improved.

Quick panel

  • See your conversations and media more conveniently in their own sections when you swipe down from the top of the screen.

AOD

  • Always On Display widgets are improved.

Accessibility

  • Get quick access to the most important accessibility settings during device setup.
  • Get recommended accessibility features based on what you use.
  • Set the Accessibility shortcut more easily in settings.
  • Sound detectors now work with your SmartThings devices such as TVs and lights to give you more visible alerts when the doorbell rings or a baby is crying.

Samsung Keyboard

  • You can find the keyboard in settings more easily under General management in Settings, and the settings have been reorganized to put the most important ones first.

Samsung DeX

  • You can now connect to supported TVs wirelessly.
  • New touchpad multi-gestures let you change screen zoom and font size more easily.

Internet

  • Added ability to block websites from redirecting you when you tap the Back button.
  • Added warnings and blocking options for websites that shot too many pop-ups or notifications.
  • Rearranged menus to make things easier to find.
  • Added several new add-ons, including one that translates websites.
  • Added option hide the status bar for a more immersive browsing experience.
  • Increased maximum number of open tabs to 99.
  • Added ability to lock and reorder tabs.
  • Improved design for tab bar which is now supported on all devices.
  • Ended support for Samsung Internet edge panel.

Contacts & Phone

  • Added the ability to edit multiple linked contacts at one time.
  • Added an option to help you quickly delete duplicate contacts.
  • Enhanced the search experience.
  • Extended the storage period of the Trash bin from 15 to 30 days.

Phone/Call background

  • Added the ability to customize the call screen with your own pictures and videos.

Messages

  • Created a Trash bin to store recently deleted messages.

Call & Text on other devices

  • Added the ability to turn Call & text on other devices on or off with Bixby Routines.

Calendar

  • Events with the same start time are now shown together in month and agenda view.
  • Reorganized options for adding and editing events.
  • Improved layout for full screen alerts.

Reminder

  • Improved layout for full screen alerts

Digital wellbeing and Parental controls

  • Added trends to your weekly report. You can see how your usage has changed since the previous week and check your usage time for each feature.
  • Added phone usage time while driving to the weekly report.
  • Added a lock screen widget so you can check your screen time without unlocking your phone.
  • Added separate profiles for personal and work modes so you can track your screen time separately.

Camera

  • Improved auto-focus and auto exposure functionality and usability.
  • Improved stabilization when taking pictures of the moon at high zoom levels.

Photo editor

  • Added the ability to revert edited pictures back to their original versions.

Bixby Routine

  • Grouped preset routines help you get started quickly and learn how to build your own routines easily.
  • You can now see what actions are reversed when a routine ends.
  • New conditions have been added, such as a specific start time, the disconnection of a Bluetooth device or Wi-Fi network, a call from a specific number, and more.
  • New actions have been added, including talking to Bixby and accessibility actions.
  • You can add a customized icon for each routine and add routines to the Lock screen for quick access.

The software is a work in progress and there’s always a chance Samsung adds, or subtracts, features from this list as the beta progresses.

For instance, Google’s smart home controls are reportedly missing from the pre-beta software, but we could see them added into the final version of the software. Time will tell.

Samsung’s also working on the software that will power the upcoming Galaxy S21 series. The firmware was, as expected, is based on Android 11.

We don’t know what the software will look like, but the devices will almost certainly be powered by a new version of One UI, probably dubbed One UI 3.1.

These Galaxy Devices Will Get Android 11

Samsung typically keeps devices updated with major Android software updates for two years. Fortunately, it looks like the company will change this policy for Android 11.

The company says it’s committed to providing three years of major software upgrades going forward. This is obviously a huge development.

Initially it looked like this might only apply to higher profile devices, but according to Samsung, lengthier support will also be extended to other devices.

Here’s the full list:

  • Galaxy S series: Galaxy S20 Ultra 5G, Galaxy S20 Ultra, Galaxy S20+ 5G, Galaxy S20+, Galaxy S20 5G, Galaxy S20 in addition to Galaxy S10 5G, Galaxy S10+, Galaxy S10, Galaxy S10e, Galaxy S10 Lite and upcoming S series devices.
  • Galaxy Note series: Galaxy Note 20 Ultra 5G, Galaxy Note 20 Ultra, Galaxy Note 20 5G, Galaxy Note 20, Galaxy Note 10+ 5G, Galaxy Note 10+, Galaxy Note 10 5G, Galaxy Note 10, Galaxy Note 10 Lite and upcoming Note series devices.
  • Galaxy Foldable devices: Galaxy Z Fold 2 5G, Galaxy Z Fold 2, Galaxy Z Flip 5G, Galaxy Z Flip, Galaxy Fold 5G, Galaxy Fold and upcoming Z series devices
  • Galaxy A series: Galaxy A71 5G, Galaxy A71, Galaxy A51 5G, Galaxy A51, Galaxy A90 5G and select upcoming A series devices.
  • Tablets: Galaxy Tab S7+ 5G, Galaxy Tab S7+, Galaxy Tab S7 5G, Galaxy Tab S7, Galaxy Tab S6 5G, Galaxy Tab S6, Galaxy Tab S6 Lite and upcoming Tab S series devices.

As for Android 11, Popular phones like the Galaxy S20, Galaxy S20+, Galaxy S20 Ultra, Galaxy S10Galaxy S10+Galaxy S10e, Galaxy Fold, Galaxy Note 10 are shoo-ins. The Galaxy Note 20 will make the move to Android 11 as well.

As for the company’s tablets, the Galaxy Tab S6 and Galaxy Tab A 10.1 (2019) will get upgraded to Android 11. You can also expect the new Galaxy Tab S7 to get upgraded as well.

Mid-range phones and tablets from 2019 should also move from Android 10 to Android 11.

Here is a preliminary list of device we think will get upgraded to Android 11 in 2020 and 2021:

  • Galaxy S20
  • Galaxy S20+
  • Galaxy S20 Ultra
  • Galaxy Note 20
  • Galaxy S10
  • Galaxy S10 5G
  • Galaxy S10+
  • Galaxy S10e
  • Galaxy S10 Lite
  • Galaxy Note 10
  • Galaxy Note 10 Lite
  • Galaxy Fold
  • Galaxy Z Flip
  • Galaxy Z Fold 2
  • Galaxy A10
  • Galaxy A10e
  • Galaxy A10s
  • Galaxy A11
  • Galaxy A20
  • Galaxy A20e
  • Galaxy A20s
  • Galaxy A21
  • Galaxy A21s
  • Galaxy A30
  • Galaxy A30s
  • Galaxy A31
  • Galaxy A40
  • Galaxy A41
  • Galaxy A50
  • Galaxy A50s
  • Galaxy A51
  • Galaxy A60
  • Galaxy A70
  • Galaxy A70s
  • Galaxy A71
  • Galaxy A80
  • Galaxy A8s
  • Galaxy M01
  • Galaxy M11
  • Galaxy M21
  • Galaxy M30s
  • Galaxy M31
  • Galaxy M40
  • Galaxy Tab S7
  • Galaxy Tab S6
  • Galaxy Tab S6 Lite
  • Galaxy Tab S5e
  • Galaxy Tab Active Pro
  • Galaxy Tab A 10.1 (2019)
  • Galaxy Tab A 8 (2019)
  • Galaxy Tab A 8 Plus (2019)
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  • Backlit Magic Keyboard and Touch ID
  • Tenth-generation Intel Core i3 processor
  • Intel Iris Plus Graphics
  • Fast SSD storage

These Galaxy Devices Might Not Get Android 11

Any Galaxy device that’s not on that list is currently on the fence when it comes to Android 11. That means popular devices like the Galaxy Note 9 and Galaxy S9 series are very much in danger of getting left behind on Android 10.

Here are a few Samsung Galaxy devices that could stick around on Android 10:

  • Galaxy S9
  • Galaxy S9+
  • Galaxy Note 9
  • Galaxy A9 (2018)
  • Galaxy A8 (2018)
  • Galaxy A8+ (2018)
  • Galaxy A7 (2018)
  • Galaxy A6 (2018)
  • Galaxy A6+ (2018)
  • Galaxy Tab A 10.5 (2018)

Older models like Galaxy S8 and Galaxy Note 8 probably won’t get upgraded to Android 11 either. Neither device has been upgraded to Android 10.

Samsung Galaxy Android 11 Beta

Google’s Android 11 beta included the Pixel 2, Pixel 2 XL, Pixel 3, Pixel 3 XL, Pixel 3a, Pixel 3a XL, Pixel 4, Pixel 4 XL, and the Pixel 4a.

Other companies that took part in the Android 11 beta included OnePlus (OnePlus 8 series), Xiomi (Mi 10, Mi 10 Pro, and the POCO F2 Pro), and OPPO (Find X2 and Find X2 Pro).

As for Samsung, it will host its own Android 11 beta for Galaxy devices.

The company has launched its Android 11 beta program. The program has started in the pre-release phase which requires users to register to become a Samsung developer partner. You can do that over on its website.

Samsung’s Android 11 pre-beta is limited to Galaxy S20, Galaxy S20+, and Galaxy S20 Ultra models in South Korea and the United States, but the company will open the beta up to users in China, Germany, India, Poland, and the United Kingdom once the pre-beta process ends.

As for the start of the public Android 11 beta, it looks like it could happen soon. An update for the company’s Samsung’s Galaxy Wearable app includes support for Android 11.

Samsung used to keep its Android betas exclusive to its Galaxy S flagship models. In 2016, the Android Nougat beta was exclusive to Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge users. In 2017, Samsung limited the Android Oreo beta to the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+.

It took a different approach with Android Pie. Instead of keeping it limited to Galaxy S flagships, Samsung expanded the Android Pie/One UI beta to former flagships and mid-range devices. The Android 10 beta reverted back to the old days with a far more limited release.

While we don’t know how the Android 11 beta will work exactly, you can expect the Galaxy Note 20 to take part at some point. We also expect to see a release for Galaxy S10 and Galaxy Note 10 models down the road.

For more on the Samsung Galaxy Android 11 beta program, take a look at our guide.

Samsung Galaxy Android 11 Release Date

So when will Samsung release its first Android 11 update? Let’s start with what we know.

Now that the Galaxy Android 11 beta program is live, we know that the company is hard at work on updates for the Galaxy S20, Galaxy S20+, and Galaxy S20 Ultra.

The Galaxy S20+ Android 11 update recently appeared in a benchmark on HTML5test which is a sign that testing is underway behind the scenes. The device being tested was running the company’s unreleased Samsung Internet 13.0.

The company is reportedly testing Android 11 on the Galaxy S10+. Earlier this year the device showed up in a Geekbench benchmark.

Last year, Samsung pushed its first public Android 10 beta in October, or, several weeks after Google pushed the official version of Android 10 to Pixel devices. With the official version of Android 11 out for Pixel devices, the public beta is getting close.

Samsung says the Galaxy S20 series will be the first to Android 11 and we expect the Galaxy Note 20 series to follow closely behind. These devices will followed by older models like the Galaxy S10 and Galaxy Note 10.

And while a lot of Galaxy models will probably get Android 11 in the second half 2020, many others will have to wait until 2021. Samsung’s Android roll outs typically span across several months.

We’ll continue to update this post with new information as the year goes on so make sure to check back in with us.

5 Reasons to Wait for the Galaxy S21 & 5 Reasons Not To

Wait for Even Better Performance

Wait for Even Better Performance

You can expect the Galaxy S21 series to build on the foundation left by the Galaxy S20 series and the Galaxy Note 20 series

A sketchy report out of China claims Samsung will utilize the Snapdragon 865 inside the Galaxy S21 to keep the price down. 

That said, there's also a chance the Galaxy S21 makes the jump to Qualcomm's rumored Snapdragon 875 processor. If true, that should lead to notable improvements in overall speed, multitasking, and battery life. 

91Mobiles has released potential information about Qualcomm's new processor. It will supposedly include a new X60 5G modem and an Adreno 660 graphics processor.

Unfortunately, the report doesn't shed any light on how much it'll improve upon the Snapdragon 865. We probably won't get those details until much later this year.

Another processor rumor hints at a new Exynos 1000 processor for the upcoming Galaxy S21 Ultra and an Exynos 991 or or Exynos 992 for the cheapest Galaxy S21 model.

The Exynos 1000 is reportedly codenamed "Olympus" and the "Exynos 1000" moniker is currently a tenative name. 

Leaker Ice Universe says the Exynos 1000 will still "lose" to the Snapdragon 875, he says power consumption should be improved. 

The company is also reportedly thinking about ditching the Exynos name for its in-house processors.  

The Galaxy S20's 120Hz screens are extremely smooth, but they can drain battery life and the hope is that Samsung's improvements to next year's models will help tone that down. The Galaxy S20 represents Samsung's first stab at the technology. 

The Galaxy S20's 5G connectivity can also have a heavy impact on battery life and bringing a new modem aboard the Galaxy S21 could help counteract that.

As for the size of the Galaxy S21's battery, Samsung-centric blog Galaxy Club has spotted information about its size. 

The information points to a 4,660mAh capacity battery. The Galaxy S20's battery is rated at 4,370mAh so this would represent a small bump. 

The same site has also leaked the Galaxy S20 Ultra's battery capacity. According to Galaxy Club, the Galaxy S21 Ultra battery is rated at 4,885 mAh which means it could be marketed as 5,000 mAh.

So if you want a high-end Galaxy phone, but think you might want a little more polish, consider hanging around for next year's flagships. 

Last update on 2020-09-21. This post may contain affiliate links. Click here to read our disclosure policy for more details. Images via Amazon API

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Apple

5 Things to Know About the iPadOS 14.0 Update

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Apple’s pushed its long-awaited iPadOS 14 update to iPad users around the world and the new software could have a big impact on your tablet’s performance.

After several months of testing, iPadOS 14 is finally out of beta and ready to download. It’s a massive upgrade for iPad, iPad Pro, iPad Air, or iPad mini.

If your iPad is currently running iPadOS 13.7, you get the smallest list of changes. If you’re moving up from an older version of iPadOS, your iPadOS 14 update will be more substantial because you’ll get the features and fixes from any software updates you skipped in your upgrade.

With iPadOS 14 out of testing, we want to take you through everything there is to know about Apple’s latest and greatest operating system.

In this guide to the first version of iPadOS 14 we’ll take you through the update’s performance, the current list of iPadOS 14 problems, the best places to find feedback about bugs and performance issues, the iPadOS 14 jailbreak status, and more.

We’ll start with our impressions of iPadOS 14 update’s performance.

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iPadOS 14 Review

If your tablet is currently on iPadOS 13.7, you’ll see a large download.

For iPadOS 13.7 users, the iPadOS 14.0 update requires a 2GB+ download. The exact download size will vary based on your device and the version of iPadOS 13 your device is running. If your slate is on an older version of iPadOS 13 you could see a larger download size.

The iPadOS 14 installation will probably take at least 10 minutes to complete. It took about 15 minutes to install on an older iPad Pro.

For more on the iPadOS 14 download and installation, take a look at our guide.

We’ve been using the iPadOS 14 update on the iPad Pro for a short time and here’s what we’ve learned thus far:

Connectivity

  • Battery life is currently stable.
  • Wi-Fi connectivity is fast and reliable.
  • Bluetooth is working fine.
  • GPS and cellular data are both working normally.

Apps

  • Third-party apps like Netflix, Dark Sky, Twitter, Slack, Asana, Gmail, Chrome, and Spotify are behaving normally.
  • First party apps like Safari, Podcasts, and Calendar are stable as well.

Speed

  • iPadOS 14 feels a bit faster than iPadOS 13.

If you’re dealing with problems on iPadOS 13.7 or an older version of iPadOS 13, you might want to install the iPadOS 14 update on your iPad right now. It could help.

If you need help making a decision, take a look at our list of reasons to, and not to, install iPadOS 14 today.

iPadOS 14 Problems

iPad users are unsurprisingly running into problems with the operating system.

The current list of problems includes some of most common iPadOS issues. The current list includes installation issues, issues with first and third-party apps, issues with Face ID, UI lag, Wi-Fi issues, and Bluetooth issues.

Apple recently told CNET that it is “aware of an issue that can impact default email and browser settings in iOS 14 and iPadOS 14 and that a “fix will be available to users in a software update.”

If you encounter a problem after upgrading, take a look at our list of fixes for the most common software issues. We’ve also released tips that will help you improve performance and some tips that should help you improve battery life.

If you can’t stand the iPadOS 14 update’s performance on your device, you can try downgrading back to iPadOS 13 in an attempt to improve performance. Apple is currently signing on iPadOS 13.7.

You can’t move your iPad’s software back to anything older than iPadOS 13.7. So those of you jumping up from iPadOS 13.6.1 and below need to approach iPadOS 14 with caution. Once you move, there’s no getting back.

New Apple iPad Pro (12.9-inch, Wi-Fi, 512GB) - Space Gray (4th Generation)
  • 12.9-inch edge-to-edge Liquid Retina display with ProMotion, True Tone, and P3 wide color
  • A12Z Bionic chip with Neural Engine
  • 12MP Wide camera, 10MP Ultra Wide camera, and LiDAR Scanner
  • 7MP TrueDepth front camera
  • Face ID for secure authentication and Apple Pay

iPadOS 14 Update: What’s New

Like iOS 14, iPadOS 14 is a huge upgrade and it brings a long list of new features, improvements, and security patches with it.

Here are Apple’s full release notes:

Redesigned Experience

  • Small, medium and large widget sizes allow you to pick the amount of information to display
  • Widget stacks make the most of your Home Screen space and the Smart Stack uses on-device intelligence to surface the right widget at the right time
  • App sidebars have a new look that deliver more of the app’s functionality in the main window
  • New app Toolbars, Pop-Overs and Pull-Down menus make it easier to get to all of the controls for an app

Compact Design

  • Siri has a compact design that allows you to refer to information onscreen and seamlessly launch into your next task
  • Compact Search has a simpler design that works on the Home Screen or over any app
  • Incoming Phone and FaceTime calls appear as a banner at the top of the screen

Search

  • One place where you can find everything: search for apps, contacts, files, quick information like weather and stocks, common knowledge questions about people or places, or even quickly start a web search
  • Top Hit results show the most relevant information including apps, contacts, knowledge, points of interest and websites
  • Quick Launcher allows you to launch an app or website by typing a few characters
  • As-you-type search suggestions show more relevant results as soon as you start typing
  • Web search suggestions to launch Safari and get the most relevant web results
  • Start a search in apps like Mail, Messages and Files

Scribble

  • Write in any text field with Apple Pencil and your writing automatically converts to typed text
  • Scratch to delete a word or space
  • Circle a word to select it for editing
  • Press and hold between words to add space for additional writing
  • Shortcut Palette offers commonly used actions for the app you are using
  • English, Simplified Chinese and Traditional Chinese are supported as well as mixed Chinese and English

Note-taking with Apple Pencil

  • Smart selection makes it easy to select text, distinguishing handwriting from drawings
  • Copy and paste as text converts your handwritten notes into typed text for use in other documents
  • Make space is a new gesture to create more room for handwritten notes
  • Data detectors allow you to take action on phone numbers, email addresses and other handwritten information
  • Shape recognition enables drawing perfect lines, arcs and other shapes

Siri

  • An all-new compact design surfaces results in the bottom right corner of the screen in a new layout
  • Expanded knowledge brings 20x more facts than three years ago
  • Web answers help find answers to a broader set of questions using information from across the internet
  • Audio messages can be sent with Siri on iOS and CarPlay
  • Expanded language support for the new Siri voice and Siri translation

Messages

  • Pinned conversations keep up to nine of your favorite message threads at the top of the list
  • Mentions let you direct a message to an individual in a group conversation
  • Inline replies let you reply to a specific message and see all related messages in their own view
  • Group photos can be customized for a shared group look

Memoji

  • 11 new hairstyles and 19 new headwear styles to customize your Memoji
  • New Memoji stickers to send a fist bump, hug or blush
  • Six added age options
  • Face covering options

Maps

  • Cycling directions provide routes along bike lanes, bike paths, and bike-friendly roads, taking into consideration elevation or how busy a street is
  • Guides offer recommendations for places to eat, meet friends, or explore, curated by a selection of trusted brands
  • Electric vehicle routing helps you plan trips with supported electric vehicles and automatically adds charging stops along your route
  • Congestion zones help you route around or through active zones in cities like London or Paris
  • Speed cameras let you know when you’re approaching speed and red-light cameras along your route
  • Refine Location enables a highly accurate location and orientation when in urban areas with a poor GPS signal

Home

  • Suggested automations help you set up automations with just a tap
  • A visual status at the top of the Home app gives you a summary of accessories that require your attention
  • Dynamic suggestions of the most relevant accessories and scenes appear in Home controls in Control Center
  • Adaptive Lighting automatically adjusts the color of your smart light bulbs throughout the day to maximize comfort and productivity
  • Face Recognition for video cameras and doorbells uses on-device intelligence to let you know who is there based on the people you’ve tagged in your Photos app and recent visitors you identify in the Home app
  • Activity Zones for video cameras and doorbells captures video or sends you a notification only when motion is detected in areas you define

Safari

  • Improved performance with an even faster JavaScript engine
  • A Privacy Report shows cross-site trackers that are being blocked by Intelligent Tracking Prevention
  • Password monitoring securely screens your saved passwords for any that may have been involved in a data breach
  • Web page translation (beta) translates entire web pages in English, Spanish, Simplified Chinese, French, German, Russian or Brazilian Portuguese

AirPods

  • Spatial audio with dynamic head tracking on AirPods Pro places sounds anywhere in space, creating an immersive surround sound experience
  • Automatic device switching transfers audio from your iPad, iPhone, iPod touch, and Mac
  • Battery notifications let you know if you need to charge your AirPods

Augmented Reality

  • Depth API provides more precise distance measurements captured by the LiDAR Scanner on iPad Pro to allow more realistic interactions between virtual and real-world objects
  • Location Anchors in ARKit 4 enables apps to place AR experiences at a specific geographic coordinate
  • Face Tracking is available to support AR experiences through the front camera on iPad Pro 12.9-inch (3rd generation) and later, iPad Pro 11-inch and later
  • Video textures in RealityKit enable apps to apply video to any part of a scene or virtual object

App Clips

  • An App Clip is a small part of an app that developers can create and that is discoverable at the moment you need it, and focused on a specific task
  • Small by design, App Clips are usable in a few seconds
  • Discover app clips at the right moment through scanning QR codes, from Messages, Maps, and Safari
  • Recently used App Clips show up in App Library’s Recently Added category, and you can download the full version of the app if you want to keep it around

Privacy

  • A recording indicator is displayed whenever an app has access to the microphone or camera
  • Approximate location can now be shared with an app, rather than sharing your precise location
  • Limited Photos library access gives you the option to share only selected photos with an app whenever an app asks for access
  • App and web developers can now offer the option for you to upgrade your existing accounts to Sign in with Apple

Accessibility

  • Headphone accommodations amplify soft sounds and adjust certain frequencies, customized for an individual’s hearing
  • Sign language prominence in FaceTime detects when a participant is using sign language and makes the person prominent in a Group FaceTime call
  • Sound Recognition uses on-device intelligence to detect and identify important sounds such as alarms, and alerts you to them using notifications
  • VoiceOver Recognition uses on-device intelligence to recognize elements on your screen to improve VoiceOver support for app and web experiences
  • Image descriptions read complete-sentence descriptions of images and photos within apps and on the web
  • Text recognition speaks the text identified within images and photos
  • Screen Recognition automatically detects interface controls to aid in navigating apps

This release also includes other features and improvements.

App Store

  • Important details about each app are displayed in a glanceable, scrollable view, including a way to see the games your friends are playing

Apple Arcade

  • Coming Soon gives you a sneak peek at upcoming Apple Arcade games and you can automatically download them as soon as they’re released
  • See All Games is improved with sorting and filtering by release date, updates, category, controller support and more
  • Achievements are browsable right from within the Apple Arcade tab
  • Continue Playing makes it easy to resume recently played games across devices
  • Game Center dashboard showcases your profile, friends, achievements, leaderboards and more, all from within your game

Apple Cash Family

  • Apple Cash can be enabled for up to five family members under 18
  • Send money to your child through Messages or by asking Siri
  • Notifications for purchases or person to person payments as they occur
  • Parental controls to limit who your children can send money to
  • Option to turn off Apple Cash for family members under 18
  • Shared oversight with another adult in your Family Sharing group

Camera

  • Quick toggles in Video mode to change video resolution and frame rate from the Camera app
  • Mirror front camera lets you capture selfies that match the front camera preview
  • Improved QR code reading to scan codes, even if they are small or wrapped around objects

FaceTime

  • Improved video quality with up to 1080p resolution on iPad Pro 10.5-inch, iPad Pro 11-inch (1st generation) and later, and iPad Pro 12.9-inch (2nd generation) and later
  • New eye contact feature uses machine learning to subtly adjust the position of your eyes and face to make video calling more natural even when you’re looking at the screen instead of the camera

Files

  • New sidebar and toolbar consolidate controls for quicker access to files and functions
  • APFS encryption support for external drives

Keyboard and International

  • On-device dictation helps protect your privacy by performing all processing completely offline. Dictation in search uses server-based dictation in order to recognize terms you may be searching for from across the Internet.
  • Search within the Emoji keyboard using a word or phrase
  • Keyboard displays AutoFill suggestions from Contacts for email addresses, phone numbers, and more in apps
  • New dictionaries for French-German, Indonesian-English, Japanese-Simplified Chinese, and Polish‑English
  • Wubi input method for Simplified Chinese
  • Autocorrection support for Irish Gaelic and Norwegian Nynorsk
  • Redesigned Japanese Kana keyboard with easier input for numbers
  • Mail supports email addresses using non‑Latin languages

Music

  • A new Listen Now tab for playing and discovering your favorite music, artists, playlists and mixes
  • Autoplay keeps music playing when you reach the end of a song or playlist by finding similar songs to play
  • Search now showcases music for your favorite genres and activities, and shows helpful suggestions as you type
  • Library filtering helps you find artists, albums, playlists and other items in your library even faster

Notes

  • Enhanced actions menu provides easy access to locking, scanning, pinning and deleting
  • Top Hits in search surfaces your most relevant search results
  • Pinned Notes list can be collapsed or expanded
  • Enhanced scanning captures sharper scans and more precise auto-cropping

Photos

  • New sidebar gives you quick access to Albums, Search and Media Types, and makes it easy to edit the order of albums under the My Albums view
  • Filter and sort your collection to more easily locate and organize your photos and videos
  • Pinch and zoom to quickly find your photos and videos in more places, like Favorites and Shared Albums
  • Photos and videos caption support
  • Live Photos taken using iOS 14 or iPadOS 14 will autoplay with improved stabilization in Years, Months and Days View
  • Memories enhancements provide a more relevant selection of photos and videos and a larger music selection for Memory movies
  • Redesigned image picker in apps uses the same smart search from the Photos app to help you easily find content to share

Podcasts

  • Listen Now is smarter and includes your personal episode queue and new episodes picked for you

Reminders

  • Assign reminders to people you share lists with
  • New reminders can be created from the lists screen without having to enter a specific list
  • Smart suggestions let you add dates, times and locations with a tap
  • Personalized lists with emoji and newly added symbols
  • Rearrange or hide smart lists

Settings

  • Option to set your default email and web browser

Shortcuts

  • Starter Shortcuts let you get started with a built-in folder of shortcuts, tailored for you
  • Shortcuts automations are suggested based on your usage patterns
  • Folders let you organize your shortcuts and can be added as widgets to the Home Screen
  • New compact design for running shortcuts keeps you in context while you use another app
  • New Automation triggers can run shortcuts based on receiving an email or message, your battery level, closing an app and more
  • Wind Down Shortcuts provide a collection of relaxing shortcuts to help you get ready for a good night’s sleep

Voice Memos

  • Folders help organize your Voice Memos recordings
  • Favorites lets you mark your best recordings and quickly access them later
  • Smart Folders automatically group together Apple Watch recordings, recently deleted recordings and recordings you marked as Favorites
  • Enhance Recording reduces background noise and room reverberation

iPadOS 14 also has 11 security patches on board and you can read more about those over on Apple’s website.

iPadOS 14 Jailbreak

If you jailbreak your iPad, you’ll have to skip iPadOS 14 for now.

Earlier this year, the developers behind the “unc0ver” jailbreak tool released a new version that’s compatible with iPadOS 13.5 and most versions of iOS/iPadOS going all the way down to iOS 11.0. iOS 12.3-12.3.2 and iOS 12.4.2-12.4.5 are excluded. So are iPadOS 13.5.1, iPadOS 13.6, iPadOS 13.6.1, and iPadOS 13.7.

Unfortunately, we haven’t heard anything about a public iPadOS 14 jailbreak and it could be weeks before we see a tool get released to the public.

What’s Next

If your device is struggling on iPadOS 14, keep your eyes peeled for a new version.

Apple is currently working on iPadOS 14.2. iPadOS 14.2 is currently in beta testing and the milestone upgrade should carry new features and bug fixes.

We don’t have an iPadOS 14.2 release date to look forward to just yet. If you can’t wait for the official release you can download the beta.

For more on iPadOS 14.2, take a look at our guide.

There’s a good chance we see another version of iPadOS 14 (iPadOS 14.0.1 or iPadOS 14.1) roll out sooner than iPadOS 14.2 so keep an eye out.

If you’re feeling leery about the move to iPadOS 14.0, you might want to wait for the next version of iPadOS 14, and its batch of bug fixes, to arrive.

4 Reasons Not to Install iPadOS 14 & 11 Reasons You Should

Install iPadOS 14 for Better Security

Install iPadOS 14 for Better Security

If security is important to you, and it should be, think about installing iPadOS 14 right now. 

iPadOS 14 has 11 new security patches on board. If you're interested in the exact nature of these improvements, you can read about them over on Apple's website

If you skipped iPadOS 13.7 or any older versions of iPadOS 13, you'll get the security patches from those updates with your upgrade. They're baked in.

In addition to those patches, iPadOS 14 comes with some security and privacy upgrades including improvements to Home/HomeKit and Safari. 

For instance in Safari, you can now tap the Privacy Report button to better understand how websites handle your privacy.

With iPadOS 14 on board you can now get information on the App Store that will help you understand the privacy practices of apps before you download them. 

There is also a new recording indicator that will appear at the top of your screen whenever an app is using your microphone or camera. You can see if an app has used them recently in Control Center.

Last update on 2020-09-21. This post may contain affiliate links. Click here to read our disclosure policy for more details. Images via Amazon API

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