The best BT broadband deals in June 2018

Our favourite BT broadband deal:

BT is one of the first names you think of when choosing a broadband provider and its range of packages is varied. If you want BT internet, you can narrow down the best deals above – enter your postcode and we’ll do the rest.

Our favourite BT broadband deal:

BT is one of the first names you think of when choosing a broadband provider and its range of packages is varied. If you want BT internet, you can narrow down the best deals above – enter your postcode and we’ll do the rest.

We’ve found all of the cheapest prices currently on offer for standard speed internet and BT Superfast fibre broadband – just pop in your postcode above and we’ll do the rest. And if you want more than just broadband, we’ll show you the best phone and television deals, too. Down the page, we’ll answer some commonly asked questions about BT internet.

See also:Broadband deals | Sky broadband deals | Virgin broadband deals | Fibre broadband deals

BT broadband packages compared – which is the best for me?

All BT broadband deals now feature unlimited data allowances. So the main choice you’ll face with BT is what speed to go for. Standard ADSL broadband gives speeds of up to 17Mb which will probably give you a max download speed of around 2MB per second. Upgrade to BT Superfast – the company’s fibre optic offering – and you can choose between 52Mb and a super fast 76Mb.

After that, you can pay more to add home phone options and a TV subscription – although you may find some package bargains around Black Friday time. The latter includes a YouView box and access to the BT TV package of your choice – more on which below.

BT Unlimited Broadband
BT’s most affordable broadband offer gives up to 17Mb speed – that’s just over 2MB per second. That should still be plenty fast enough to let you browse the web, stream music and watch interruption-free catch-up TV. But it may struggle to cope with larger households all using the internet at once. BT Unlimited Broadband includes:

Up to 17Mb speedBT Home Hub 4 router100GB of BT cloud storageBT Virus Protect for two devices

BT Superfast Fibre Unlimited
If fibre broadband is available where you live and you have a few extra pounds to spare a month, we’d recommend cranking up the speed to BT’s least expensive Superfast deal. At 52Mb (roughly 6.5MB/s), it’s got the legs to seamlessly deliver HD video and fast downloads, even when there are a few of you using it. BT Superfast Fibre Unlimited includes:

Up to 52Mb speedBT Smart Hub100GB of BT cloud storageBT Virus Protect for two devices

BT Superfast Fibre 2 Unlimited
If you demand extremely fast downloads and stream 4K films and TV, then BT’s fastest broadband (76Mb) is well worth considering – especially if you’ve got a bustling household all trying to log in at once. It’s pricey, but BT sweetens the deal with some added extras. BT Superfast Fibre 2 Unlimited includes:

Up to 76Mb speedBT Smart Hub500GB of BT cloud storageBT Virus Protect for 15 devices

What BT router will I get?

BT throws in a router for free (although you’ll have to pay for the delivery). The quality of router you receive will depend on the package you choose.

BT Home Hub Go for standard BT Unlimited Broadband and you’ll get the basic Home Hub 4. You’ve probably seen it sneakily peering at you from around corners in the homes of umpteen friends and families, although its dimensions are sleek enough that you should be able to stow it somewhere subtle without too much trouble. As well as wi-fi, you can also connect to it via an ethernet cable. It’s perfectly functional, but doesn’t have the same strength as the…

BT Smart Hub Pay £65 extra or upgrade to BT Superfast and you’ll receive the more powerful Smart Hub. BT claims that it gives out the UK’s most powerful wi-fi signal among the routers sent out by other major providers. Handy if you live in a big house or like to use your phone or laptop out in the garden.

Alternatively, you can stick with your existing router. But unless you’ve shelled out a lot for your current model, you’re probably better off swallowing the delivery charge and using the BT Home Hub or Smart Hub. That way, if anything goes wrong, you’ll be able to use their tech support.

How long will the contract be?

Take BT broadband, and you’ll be tied into a 18 month contract. After that, your monthly cost will go up by around a tenner. To encourage you to hang around, you can’t use your BT router with any other broadband provider so you’ll need to pay for a new one when you move on.

Are there any BT broadband AND TV deals?

There are three TV packages that you can add to your BT internet package, but you’ll need to sign up for 12 months:

Starter BT is chucking in its Starter TV package if you get Superfast – which includes 80 channels, together with BT’s entry-level YouView box. It costs extra if you go for standard broadband.

Entertainment Plus You can splash out an extra few quid a month for BT’s Entertainment Plus package. This includes 110 channels and a YouView+ box to record up to 300 hours.

Total Entertainment If you’re totally addicted to films and box sets, then it may be worth spending £15-ish a month on Total Entertainment. This is a must if you have a 4K TV, as BT throws in its YouView+ Ultra HD box. It can record 600 hours of video to help you keep abreast of the 141 channels it gives you access to.

What about BT Sport?

Until recently, BT Sport came free with every BT internet plan. That’s come to an end now…you’ll have to pay an extra £3.50 a month to get access to Premier League football, Ashes cricket, top-flight rugby union and exclusive UFC action. Keep your eyes peeled however, as BT does run the occasional promotion where you can still get BT Sport for free.

Can I make calls from a landline?

You can indeed. No matter which BT broadband package you opt for, you get a landline phone number with unlimited weekend calls to other UK landlines. If you prefer nattering in the evening you can pay extra for unlimited landline calls between 7pm and 7am. While more still lets you make as many landline calls as you want at any time of the day. You’ll be covered by free BT Call Protect as well, which will help to halt nuisance calls.

Can I add BT Mobile?

To goad you into bringing all your devices over to BT, it’s offering £5 a month off your monthly mobile phone tariff. BT Mobile has deals on all the biggest and newest handsets, including iPhones and Samsung Galaxys. In particular, that makes BT pretty competitive when it comes to SIM only deals.

What is BT cloud storage?

If you find yourself running out of storage space on your phone, tablet or laptop or want to back up your files, BT has its own cloud storage solution. With BT Unlimited Broadband and Superfast Fibre, you’ll get 100GB – that’s enough room for around 25,000 songs, 140 films or 100,000 photos. It’s 500GB if you go for Superfast 2, which should be sufficient to store the music and photo collections of you and your family.

What is BT Virus Protect?

All BT broadband packages include BT’s internet security tool, BT Virus Protect. As well as promising to vanquish viruses, it features BT Web Protect to flag phishing scams, BT Parental Controls to help you limit the websites your children can see and True Key for easy management of your passwords. As well as your main computer, you can apply BT Virus Protect to one other laptop, phone or tablet if you go for Broadband Unlimited or Superfast Fibre. While Fibre 2 lets you protect up to 15 devices. We still think you should get dedicated internet security however – check out our pick of the best antivirus software.

What’s a BT wi-fi hotspot?

BT has dotted five million wi-fi hotspots around the UK and 18 million around the globe. As a BT Broadband customer, you’ll have access to every one of them. So if you’re on your laptop in a cafe or checking maps on your phone and see that BT Wi-fi is available, you can jump on for free.

Are there any other perks to getting BT broadband?

As well as the discounted mobile tariffs and cut price BT Sport, BT is luring in new customers with a BT Reward Card. This online exclusive means you can claim a prepaid Mastercard cash card if you sign up to BT Broadband.

The sum on the Reward Card changes regularly, but is usually in excess of £50 –
and sometimes as much as £150. The amount on the card is always more with one of the BT Superfast packages.

Is BT broadband any good?

BT relies a lot on its enduring reputation as the most recognisable name in telecommunications, and it remains the most widely used broadband provider in the UK. But that doesn’t necessarily equate to quality. Although it can offer competitive prices and bespoke internet, phone and TV packages, it often sits at the bottom of the list when it comes to customer satisfaction surveys.

How to use the BT broadband checker?

Much like our postcode checker above, BT has its own broadband checker. Pop in your address and phone number and it will let you know what speeds you can expect with BT internet and whether its Superfast broadband is available in your area. If fibre isn’t yet available, you can sign up to BT’s mailing list so that they’ll give you a shout when the cables have been installed.

How do I contact the BT broadband helpline?

If you need help with your broadband or set-up, BT doesn’t exactly make it easy for you to speak to them on the phone. It seems to prefer for you to go through its online support. But if you’re determined to speak to a human, there is a 24/7 number available. Dial 0800-111-4567 if you’re using a landline in the UK, 0330-123-4567 from your mobile or +44179-359-6931 if you’re out of the country.

The best Sky broadband deals in June 2018

Sky used to be known best for its TV service, but now its just as synonymous with home broadband internet. Sky broadband is one of the most popular providers in the UK.

Sky used to be known best for its TV service, but now its just as synonymous with home broadband internet. Sky broadband is one of the most popular providers in the UK. So whether you want broadband only, or a package of Sky TV and broadband, we’ll help you find your way to the best broadband deal.

Our postcode checker above will tell you whether the faster Sky Fibre is available in your area. The good news is that Sky has some great prices. And keep scrolling down the page to discover more information about Sky broadband.

Prefer to order by phone? Then call 08000-142-334 and speak to an adviser dedicated to Sky broadband deals.

See also:Broadband deals | BT broadband deals | Virgin broadband deals | Fibre broadband deals

Sky broadband plans compared – what broadband speed can I get with Sky?

Even before you start thinking about whether you want to add Sky TV or mobile to your internet package, you’ll need to decide what speed and data usage best suits your household. Consider whether you want to crank up the speed – and price – with a fibre broadband package.

Sky Broadband Unlimited

If you simply want basic broadband for checking your emails and using the web, then Sky’s entry-level Broadband Unlimited deal is one of the cheapest on the market. With download speeds averaging 10Mb (that’s around 1MB per second) it may struggle a little with streaming, especially if there are lots of devices trying to use it at once. Sky Broadband Unlimited includes:

Avg 17Mb speedSky Q Hub routerUnlimited data usageSky Broadband Shield

Sky Fibre Unlimited

The name’s a bit of a giveaway. It’s Sky’s super fast fibre package and make the data usage unlimited. It’s quite a big jump in price and you’ll be tied into an 18 month contract, but if you’ve got a data hungry household that are all simultaneously downloading, streaming and browsing, you’ll be glad of the extra speed. Sky Fibre Unlimited includes:

Avg 36Mb speedSky Q Hub routerUnlimited data usageSky Broadband Shield

Sky Fibre Max

This is the daddy of the Sky broadband family. The provider cranks up the speed to up to 58Mb, which equates to download speeds of roughly 7MB per second. Rapid. Sky Fibre Max includes:

Avg 58Mb speedSky Q Hub routerUnlimited data usageSky Broadband Shield

Can I order Sky broadband deals over the phone?

You sure can. Bash in the digits 08000-142-334 and talk to an adviser. They will take you through the purchase over the phone if you’d sooner not do it online.

Can I add any Sky TV packages deals?

When you sign up for Sky broadband, the sales pitch for Sky TV quickly follows. As a minimum, you’ll have to spend around £20 to add Sky Entertainment and then you can add further channels from there. Whatever you choose it comes with a Sky Q box, which lets you record up to 1TB worth of programming – that’s around 500 hours – and you can choose from the following bundles:

Entertainment Sky’s most affordable TV bundle throws in around 100 channels, including Sky Atlantic, Sky One and Sky Living. This is the base layer to which you can add one or more (or none) of the following.

Sky Cinema Whatever your film tastes, the eleven Sky Cinema channels are likely to have you covered. From Disney and Family to Thriller and Comedy.

Sky Sports Unless it’s on special offer, you’ll have to pay about an extra £20 a month to add Sky’s suite of sport channels. There are dedicated channels for football, cricket, golf and F1, while the main event station carries the headline events of the day.

Kids If there are children in the household, an extra fiver or so a month bags 10+ kids channels and thousands of on-demand episodes of children’s TV. And then there’s the Sky Kids app which features even more shows and games.

Box Sets If you spend your evenings binging on box sets, a fiver a month gives you immediate access to more than 350.

What is the Sky Q Hub router?

All Sky broadband plans now come with a Sky Q Hub. It’s a little bit on the chunky side, but that translates into a more powerful router. If you’re desperate for fast downloads, it connect to 5GHz channels and it has the capacity to connect 64 laptops, tablets, phones and other devices.

How long will my Sky broadband contract last?

If you go for Sky’s most affordable Broadband Unlimited plan, you’ll get a one year contract. With all of the Fibre packages, you’ll be tied into an 18 month commitment to Sky. You may not wish to be tied into a contract that long, but at least you’ll know what you’ll be paying for longer.

Sky Talk – do I get a Sky phone line?

The price you pay for Sky Broadband also includes Sky Line Rental, which lets you retain your existing home phone number.

You can pay an extra premium for a Sky Talk allowance – for example, Sky Talk Evenings and Weekends allows unlimited calls during those windows (evenings are defined as 7pm-7am), Sky Talk Anytime Extra for as many calls as you wish to UK landlines at any time and Sky Talk International Extra if you have friends or family living overseas.

Sky Talk customers also get the benefit of the Sky Talk Shield. It gives you greater control over blocking unwanted calls and numbers.

Do I get Sky email?

If you want it, you’ll be assigned with a Sky Yahoo! Mail account. You can access this email account on any computer, smartphone or tablet – not just your home PC or laptop.

What is Sky WiFi?

As a Sky broadband customer, you’ll get access to unlimited usage of Sky’s wi-fi hotspots that are dotted around the UK. You can connect up to six devices to the thousands of hotspot locations, which include popular coffee and restaurant chains.

What is Sky Broadband Shield?

Access to Sky Broadband Shield is included with every internet plan and adds a layer of security to your online life at home. As well as seeking out malware and phishing scam attempts, the Shield includes parental controls so you can make sure your children aren’t landing on websites they shouldn’t.

Sky broadband help and the Switch Squad

There’s a multitude of online guides, help and support on the Sky website, but you can call Sky Help as well to discuss your broadband on 0330-041-4376.

If you’re having difficulty switching to Sky broadband, the company has a dedicated so-called Switch Squad to get you transferred over from your current broadband provider.

To transfer to Sky Broadband now, you can order online at the Sky Shop.

The Ikea-Sonos Symfonisk speaker will bring the sweet sound of Swedish furniture – CNET

What do you get when you cross a Swedish furniture company with a Californian electronics manufacturer? Answer: Symfonisk.

Ikea and Sonos just announced the Symfonisk speaker on Thursday. Although the speaker is currently a prototype, Ikea says the Symfonisk range will release after summer 2019.

What do you get when you cross a Swedish furniture company with a Californian electronics manufacturer? Answer: Symfonisk.

Ikea and Sonos just announced the Symfonisk speaker on Thursday. Although the speaker is currently a prototype, Ikea says the Symfonisk range will release after summer 2019.

The Symfonisk speaker is a Wi-Fi speaker that’s said to work with all Sonos products, which may mean you’ll be able to control it with the Sonos app, or set it up in conjunction with other Sonos speakers.

It’s also said to have an affordable price. Björn Block, the business leader for Ikea Smart Home, says, “Many people dream of built-in sound systems, but few can afford it. Our goal is for our collective work to save space, get rid of cords, make clutter invisible, and bring sound and music into the home in a more beautiful way.”

The Symfonisk speaker is the first product announced by the duo since their partnership last year. No word on pricing or other products just yet.

You can check out more pictures of the speaker below:

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White Lodging Breaks Ground on Hampton Inn & Suites by Hilton Fort Wayne Downtown

“In 2007, the City of Fort Wayne, reached out to us with the opportunity to build a hotel which would anchor a key element of a new economic engine for the city,” said Deno Yiankes, president and CEO, investments and development at White Lodging.

“In 2007, the City of Fort Wayne, reached out to us with the opportunity to build a hotel which would anchor a key element of a new economic engine for the city,” said Deno Yiankes, president and CEO, investments and development at White Lodging. “Today, it’s exciting to continue that vision with a second hotel, which is not only one of our nation’s most respected and well-known premium brands, but also designed and localized specifically to honor the great location on Jefferson Boulevard adjacent to the Grand Wayne Convention Center and Parkview Field. We believe this is another step in continuing to bring more families, business travelers and conventioneers to experience all that downtown Fort Wayne has to offer.”

Over 25 percent of the hotel’s 136 guestrooms will be oversized suites and will be located at 226 West Jefferson Boulevard next to the Courtyard Fort Wayne Downtown, which was developed and managed by White Lodging. The hotel opened in 2010.

“I’m encouraged by White Lodging’s commitment to once again invest in another important project in Fort Wayne,” said Mayor Henry. “Adding an additional hotel and increasing our room capacity will have a tremendous impact on our community. As a point of destination city, this new development will enhance our ability to assist with our growing convention and tourism opportunities and provide guests with a memorable experience in Fort Wayne.”

Hampton by Hilton hotels offers warm surroundings, a friendly service culture and a staff that makes sure guests are 100 percent happy. Guaranteed. The hotel will offer the brand’s signature amenities including free hot breakfast, complimentary Wi-Fi, a 24-hour business center and oversized roof top fitness center. All guestrooms and suites will include HDTV and free in-room movie channels with 50% offering direct views of Parkview Field and the other 50% overlooking the downtown skyline.

The hotel will also offer two dining options unique to the Hampton Inn & Suites by Hilton Ft Wayne Downtown. A rooftop bar on top of the building will offer a one-of-a-kind experience, overlooking Parkview Field. Patrons can lounge on flexible seating arrangements with communal tables and soft seating. The space will be partial open air with stadium seating overlooking the baseball field. Fire pits throughout the space will offer gathering points, punctuated with whimsical “starry” lighting. Locals and visitors can expect sharable small plates and snacks, and a nod to modern bar culture with cocktails, a craft beer lists and a boutique all-American wine list.

Bringing food truck culture into a permanent home in downtown Ft Wayne, Burger Bar is a neighborhood burger joint with a walkup window for diners to approach on West Jefferson Blvd. The burgers are made with Angus, Midwestern beef, the crispy chicken sandwiches are hand-breaded and the fries are cooked to order for crispy perfection. Sweet tooth? The shakes, sundaes and soft-serve cones are sourced from a local Indiana creamery and the hot fudge and caramel sauces are all made in house. Whether it’s for pick-up or dine-in, Burger Bar will always satisfy your burger cravings.

The hotel will also participate in Hilton’s award-winning guest-loyalty program, Hilton Honors, where members who book directly through Hilton channels gain access to benefits including an exclusive discount, free Wi-Fi and the option to redeem their points for free nights or to make purchases at Amazon.com with Amazon Shop with Points.

Read more about Hampton by Hilton at www.hampton.com and www.news.hampton.com.

About White Lodging
White Lodging, established in 1985, is one of the leading ownership, development, and management companies in America. An innovative trendsetter, the organization’s portfolio includes convention, urban lifestyle, and suburban select service hotels with more than $1 billion in managed revenue. White Lodging operates more than 90-premium hotels, 30 restaurants and 30 brands — including Marriott International, Hilton Worldwide, Hyatt Global, and InterContinental Hotel Group — in 19 states. Success knows no boundaries at White Lodging, where associates and leadership have consistently earned superior guest satisfaction scores, top market share and industry-leading profit margins while recruiting the best, brightest, and most passionate professionals in every discipline for three decades. White Lodging is a proud winner of the 2018 Gallup Great Workplace Award. For more information about White Lodging, visitwww.whitelodging.com, or connect on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedInand Instagram.

About Hampton by Hilton
As the number one ranked lodging franchise for the past nine years, according to Entrepreneur®, Hampton by Hilton, including Hampton Inn by Hilton and Hampton Inn & Suites by Hilton, serves value-conscious and quality-driven travelers with more than 2,345 properties and more than 238,000 rooms in 21 countries and territories. High-quality accommodations and amenities, such as complimentary Wi-Fi, free hot breakfast, and On The RunTM breakfast bags, contribute to Hampton by Hilton ranking as a leader in its segment. Hampton by Hilton Team Members deliver friendly, authentic, caring and thoughtful service defined as Hamptonality. Each Hampton by Hilton hotel offers complete satisfaction with the 100% Hampton Guarantee®. Hampton by Hilton is part of Hilton Honors, the award-winning guest loyalty program for Hilton’s 14 distinct hotel brands. Hilton Honors members who book directly through preferred Hilton channels have access to instant benefits, including a flexible payment slider that allows members to choose nearly any combination of Points and money to book a stay, an exclusive member discount that can’t be found anywhere else, free standard Wi-Fi , and digital amenities like digital check-in with room selection and Digital Key (select locations), available exclusively through the industry-leading Hilton Honors mobile app. For more information about Hampton by Hilton, visit www.hampton.com or news.hampton.com, and connect on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram.

Contact: Kathleen Sebastian
P 219.472.2861 | Kathleen.Sebastian@whitelodging.com

Cision View original content with multimedia:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/white-lodging-breaks-ground-on-hampton-inn–suites-by-hilton-fort-wayne-downtown-300661899.html

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The best business VPN providers of 2018

Using one of the best VPN services is a crucial consideration for any modern business which has a flexible and mobile workforce, in terms of maintaining high levels of privacy and security.

Using one of the best VPN services is a crucial consideration for any modern business which has a flexible and mobile workforce, in terms of maintaining high levels of privacy and security. When it comes to precious business data, there’s clearly a vital need to keep the company network and internet connection secure, and to allow for secure remote access facilities, too.

This is especially true in the world of small businesses, which usually have limited resources to devote to managing security. Fortunately, there are business VPN services out there which are a breeze to set up and manage, plus they can be scaled to fit the organisation’s needs as it grows.

Check out the best VPN services to get the best VPN deals on the marketBest business VPN in 2018

Perimeter 81, powered by SaferVPN, offers a great business VPN experience for users who work across multiple devices and switch from one to another frequently.

It has well-designed clients for Windows, Mac, iOS and Android, is compatible with Linux and Chromebook, and includes a single-click web management console.

While the server coverage may be slightly limited, it didn’t bother us as we got above-average speeds in our performance tests. The service upholds a strict no-logging policy. Perimeter 81 supports IKEv2, OpenVPN, L2TP and PPTP security protocols, features automatic Wi-Fi security, and business clients enjoy priority support around the clock.

Perimeter 81 has two business plans to choose from, depending on the number of users needed – including a custom plan if required. The packages available are:

Business: $10 per team member, per monthEnterprise: Custom plan

[Save 40%] Until July 31, 2018, get 40% off VyprVPN’s annual plans, just in time to boost up your coverage of the 2018 World Cup in Russia. VyprVPN is a fast, highly secure VPN without third-parties, all for as little as $36.00 for the first year. Get VyprVPN here.

(25% Off) Exclusive VyprVPN Deal: TechRadar readers get 25% off VyprVPN annual plans ($45 USD for 1 year). VyprVPN is a fast, highly secure VPN without third parties. Get VyprVPN here

VyprVPN manages all of its own servers which definitely shows when it comes to performance levels. In our tests, we found our download speeds more than doubled compared to our normal rates with the VPN turned off – it doesn’t come any better than that.

The service provides you with easy-to-use and intuitive software for overall account management, as well as apps for all major platforms. In addition to OpenVPN, PPTP and L2TP/IPsec protocols, VyprVPN offers additional security features like a NAT Firewall and its own Chameleon technology for preventing deep packet inspection (DPI), VPN blocking and throttling. 24/7 live chat support is in place for when you need assistance.

Interestingly, there isn’t much information listed on the website regarding the business plans. To find out more about them, and discover the exact pricing, you have to apply for a free trial or contact customer support. There are two of these plans pitched pretty closely together, starting from $299 and $349 respectively. The packages available are:

VyprVPN for Business – $299 a yearVyprVPN for Business Cloud – $349 a year

Hotspot Shield delivers a consistently fast service with competitive pricing for consumers, and its business offering is no different. In performance terms, our tests showed a significant increase in download speeds with a slight increase in upload speeds compared to our normal rates, and barely any change in latency.

On the downside, the number of server locations is rather low, while the service doesn’t offer any management software so you only have native apps at your disposal.

The privacy policy is favorable, not keeping any logs, and on the security front you get all the usual protocols. Additional features include private browsing and virtual locations, among others. There’s dedicated customer support in case you run into any hiccups.

You can choose from three plans, and they are quite affordable with the lower-end plan being a laudably cheap option for small businesses. The packages available are:

1-month – $39.996-months – $179.94 ($29.99 a month)1-year – $239.88 ($19.99 a month)

Corporate users benefit from the same sterling levels of security and reliability NordVPN is known to provide consumers with, alongside the added bonus of getting a dedicated account manager for business account holders. Companies also get a dedicated business VPN server for internal use, and each VPN account is assigned a dedicated IP address.

With the number of servers constantly growing, NordVPN is one of the better VPN providers when it comes to server numbers. It’s not the fastest network out there, but it’s fast enough – and more importantly, this service is consistent in terms of its performance.

This provider offers lots of security features, including double data encryption, a kill switch, and much more. NordVPN is privacy-focused, keeping no logs of user activity and requiring no company details to purchase.

Do note that there is no dedicated management software, although you’ll get VPN clients for all major operating systems. Another caveat comes on the pricing front, as there’s no pricing scheme laid out on the website, and you have to fill in a form to get a quote. Depending on your exact needs, you can select between (up to) 5 and 100+ users.

Pricing only available as an individual quote

TorGuard certainly has a huge selection of servers, meaning you should never have a problem finding a reliable connection. That said, our testing revealed only average levels of performance, with some spikes in latency. Still, the speed trade-off might well be worth it as you get tons of options to set up your VPN experience on any OS.

Every TorGuard business VPN account comes with a 24/7 dedicated account manager and access to a dedicated VPN management portal. Security-wise, TorGuard takes care of business (ahem) with all the regular protocols, 256-bit AES encryption, and a ‘Stealth VPN’ service that avoids deep packet inspection.

There are three business price plans plus a custom option. Each gets you unlimited access and support, the only difference being the number of users covered, and dedicated IP and email addresses. The packages available are:

Starter – $69 a monthSmall – $110 a monthMedium – $169 a monthCustom planWe’ve rounded up the best free VPN services of 2018How to choose the best VPN service for business

Obviously, protecting sensitive business data is the main priority here, so you need a VPN with the beefiest levels of security. Since you’ll be handling multiple accounts at once, for multiple staff members, quality management software or a dedicated account manager are important considerations.

Having access to plenty of server locations is always a good thing, particularly when it comes to a mobile workforce, and nippy performance is handy for transferring large files or perhaps partaking of HD videoconferencing. Another important factor is the number of connections available and supported devices, which must suit the size of your firm and the hardware your employees use.

Also consider

1. Jungle disk: It is an easy, secure VPN access for small businesses supporting SSL and IPsec including remote access and site-to-site. There’s no hardware purchase, no setup fees, all pay-as-you-go monthly, in a fully managed service. The service is aimed at 2-250 employee businesses with under 10 locations.

As little as $4.9 per employee (up to 10 employees) per month, per location.As little as $0.89 per employee (up to 100 employees) per month, per location with dedicated static public IP, port forwarding.As little as $0.56 per employee (up to 250 employees) per month, per location, with dedicated static public IP, port forwarding, Gigabit network interfaces, up to 4 LAN or Wi-Fi networks and site-to-site and 3rd-party VPN

2.ibVPN: Their VPN service is best for securing your company’s data with military grade encryption while working remotely and to access business tools while traveling or when connected to public WiFi. They claim that they “provide the most complete business VPN solution offering fast VPN servers, SmartDNS and Proxies to make sure it suits all your company’s needs”, adding “for easy access we have developed VPN clients for major OS (Windows, Mac, iOS and Android) so even the less techie can connect in seconds with a simple click.”

Small Business VPN 7 (VPN + SmartDNS) – 7 simultaneous connections from $8.32 per month (billed yearly)Small Business VPN 15 (VPN + SmartDNS) – 15 simultaneous connections from $16.66 per month (billed yearly)Small Business VPN 25 (VPN + SmartDNS) – 25 simultaneous connections from $33.32 per month (billed yearly)

3. Hide.me : This service is geared towards “any company which wants to give its employees the geographical freedom to work without compromising on their security, any company which wants to make sure that their employees are always secure even while using public Wi-Fi connections, any company which does not want to spend a lot of time on administrating its VPN solution and any company which does not want to spend a lot of money on their VPN solution.” Hide.me’s Business VPN offers a flexible Windows SDK to control the VPN connection over an API. You can bundle the SDK into your existing application or just build your GUI on top of it. With their API, you can automatically create, delete, disable, and enable VPN accounts. They don’t ask you to pay upfront and offers a monthly consolidated billing option so that you pay only for accounts that have been active.

Apple Watch 3 vs Apple Watch 2 vs Apple Watch: which is the best for you?

Donning an Apple Watch in 2018 is a little more tempting because of new deals, fresh features, the watchOS 4 update and a higher app count. It’s a fantastic smartwatch series, as long as you’re expecting an iPhone-tied convenience gadget, not a life-changing piece of technology.

Donning an Apple Watch in 2018 is a little more tempting because of new deals, fresh features, the watchOS 4 update and a higher app count. It’s a fantastic smartwatch series, as long as you’re expecting an iPhone-tied convenience gadget, not a life-changing piece of technology.

Why? It makes our best smartwatch list, but smartwatches aren’t a game changer or revolutionary like smartphones from ten years ago. They’re just an everyday awesome add-on; truly an accessory.

Apple never ended up calling this the ‘iWatch’, but it really is “my watch” and along with the Apple Watch 2 and Apple Watch 3 it’s Apple’s most personal and customizable gadget yet.

We’ve put together the guide below to talk you through the differences between the Apple Watch, Apple Watch 2 and Apple Watch 3 as well as the decisions you need to make on style, software and much more.

There are more than 71 flavors, with different case materials, colors, sizes and interchangeable Apple Watch bands too, so there are a bunch of a tough decisions to make.

You don’t have to choose an Apple Watch – here are our best smartwatches for iPhoneWhat Apple Watch models are there?

It’s best to think of the Apple Watch in four distinct generations, so far. There was the original device that was released under the name Apple Watch in April 2015, but you’ll struggle to find retailers selling this device now and you’ll probably only be able to get it second hand.

We wouldn’t recommend buying that watch now as it won’t be able to run with the upcoming watchOS 5 update and will miss out on the latest features, so you’re better off buying a more recently released Apple Watch.

It was replaced by the Apple Watch Series 1 in September 2016, which is largely the same device but with Bluetooth 4.2 technology and a faster dual-core chipset. The original Apple Watch is now referred to as Series 0, but you probably shouldn’t worry about that if you’re buying a new watch as it’s difficult to find it.

The Apple Watch Series 1 is easy to find as Apple is still selling it, as are third-party retailers.

Alongside the Series 1, Apple announced the Watch Series 2 (which we refer to as the Apple Watch 2 to make things a little simpler). This brought new technology like built-in GPS and water resistance and a slightly larger battery.

Apple is no longer selling the Watch Series 2, but you can buy this from a variety of third-party retailers.

The third and most recent generation of the wearable is the Apple Watch 3. It comes with LTE technology (if you want it) as well as a variety of new fitness features and improved GPS.

Apple Watch price comparison

Largely the pricing for the Apple Watch works by how old the product is. If you want the Apple Watch Series 1, you’ll be able to find that for a lot less money than the Apple Watch 3.

Below we’ve got a live widget that will show you the latest deals for all three versions of the Apple Watch if you want to see the exact price right now. Bear in mind you can also get the Apple Watch 3 on a contract because of the LTE features, and you can’t do that for the other two devices.

Apple Watch vs Apple Watch 2 vs Apple Watch 3Original Apple Watch is cheaper, but it’s very difficult to findApple Watch Series 1 is faster, but lacks Watch 2 featuresApple Watch 2 has GPS, a brighter screen and is water-resistantApple Watch 3 has a faster chipset and optional LTE

You can’t buy the original Apple Watch easily anymore, so here we’re going to break down the differences between the watches referred to as the Apple Watch, Apple Watch 2 and Apple Watch 3.

Design

So far, the Apple Watch series has been very similar in terms of design. There are a few minor changes, including a little red dot on the crown on the Apple Watch 3 and a slightly slimmer body, but largely each watch looks the same.

Only the Apple Watch 2 and Apple Watch 3 are waterproof though, so don’t try taking the original watch in the pool with you.

Display

All generations of the Apple Watch feature square displays, but the technology used differs. The Apple Watch featured an OLED Retina display with Force Touch at 450 nits, while the two later models have an improved technology that runs at 1000 nits.

Performance

You don’t need a huge amount of power in the Apple Watch, but each passing generation has been a little snappier. The Series 1 features an Apple S1P system on a chip, while the Series 2 and Series 3 feature an S2 and S3 respectively.

Each watch has featured 512MB of RAM, apart from the Apple Watch 3, which features 768MB.

Fitness

All versions of the Apple Watch feature a heart rate monitor, accelerometer, gyroscope and ambient light sensor. The Apple Watch 3 was the first time the device sported an Altimeter though.

For GPS, you will get that on the Apple Watch 2 and an improved version of the tech including Galileo and QZSS features is on the third iteration. Both the Apple Watch 2 and Apple Watch 3 feature swimming modes.

Battery

The battery life of the Apple Watch has remained largely unchanged. If you go for the 38mm version it has a smaller battery inside than the 42mm one, but that’s largely because of the difference in screen size, as you need a bigger battery to power a larger display for the same amount of time.

Connectivity

Each version of the watch has Bluetooth and Wi-Fi technology built-in, but the Apple Watch 3 is the only one to have a cellular option. This means you can use an optional eSIM to give yourself a connection when on the move.

Read our Apple Watch reviewRead our Apple Watch 2 reviewRead our Apple Watch 3 reviewWhat iPhone do you need to use an Apple Watch?

Unlike Google’s Wear OS devices, the Apple Watch only works with one type of phone. You’ll need to have at least an iPhone 5 running iOS 10 or later to be able to use an Apple Watch or Apple Watch 2.

If you want an Apple Watch 3, you’ll need to have at least an iPhone 5S running iOS 11 software for the non-LTE version or an iPhone 6 to be able to use the LTE variant.

We answer the big question: can the Apple Watch work without an iPhone?Apple Watch colors and sizes

All the models of the Apple Watch come in either 38mm or 42mm versions. Some color options are limited to certain size watches, but our simple advice here is go for the 42mm version if you want a larger watch with a bigger screen and you don’t mind spending a touch more.

It’s difficult to get the difference in size across here, but if you’re uncertain on size it’s worth trying each on in the shop to be sure. Below we’ve got two examples of the 38mm and 42mm sat side by side.

You’ve then also got to choose the color of your watch as well as what material you want it to be made of. The Apple Watch 3 comes in gold, space grey or silver if you want it to be made of aluminum, and there’s either silver or space black if you want it in stainless steel.

White and grey are also color options if you choose the ceramic version of the Apple Watch 3, but these are much more expensive and are called the Apple Watch Series 3 Edition.

There’s also the Apple Watch Nike+, which is the same device as the Apple Watch 3 but comes with exclusive watch faces, the Nike+ Run Club app pre-loaded and a choice of lots of Nike branded sports bands.

That’s not all though. If you like the idea of a handcrafted leather strap, you may like the look of the Apple Watch Hermès. Again, it’s the Apple Watch 3 but here you get an exclusive watch face using the Hermès Carrick font as well as high-end leather straps for your wrist.

The Apple Watch Series 1 is only available in aluminum in space grey or silver.

Apple Watch bands and straps

Apple Watch Hermès with the Double Tour strap

There are dozens of straps sold by Apple that offer a huge variety of styles for your wrist. When you first buy your Apple Watch you’ll have a strap included, but you can buy and easily switch out different straps that you buy separately.

There are material and color options available including woven nylon, Nike sport, leather, bracelets and much more. Any Apple Watch strap works with any Apple Watch, as long as you’ve got the right 38mm or 42mm size.

Plus there are lots of third-party bands available too, but make sure you get the right size as it won’t support all watch straps.

Want to see our favorites? Here’s our selection of the best Apple Watch bandsApple Watch software updates

Apple’s watchOS 4 update gave every model a boost, including the original Apple Watch. The update added a watch face with Siri built-in, allowing you to tap it to get details from Siri, such as your reminders.

Activity and workout tracking has also been improved, while the Apple Music app will automatically sync music to your watch. You can also now pay your friends via Apple Pay on your watch and there have been various other small tweaks and improvements made.

Prior to that the original Apple Watch was updated to watchOS 3, which sped things up and made the once-confusing menu interface actually make sense. This was a complete overhaul for the Apple Watch series.

That update also added a Dock to easily access your frequently used apps, new watch faces, and a Control Center menu (just like on iOS) to toggle settings. New to the miniaturized Control Center (as of watchOS 3.2) is a Theater mode so that the watch’s raise-to-wake feature can be turned off.

Before that, the Apple watchOS 2 update opened up its Engine, Digital Crown and microphone to developers, meaning we’ve now got a whole host of apps that have supercharged the watch experience.

That Apple Watch update also featured Wi-Fi connectivity, new watch faces with different customizable options, better Siri capabilities, email replies and even Transit directions courtesy of iOS 9 and beyond.

Apple has officially revealed watchOS 5 and has confirmed an update will be coming to existing Apple Watch devices by the end of the year. An educated guess from us suggests it’ll be landing on watches in September, alongside what we expect to be called the Apple Watch 4.

If you’ve got a first generation Apple Watch, you won’t be able to upgrade to the new software. With Apple’s iPhone devices it usually supports them for around four years since release, and it seems to be a similar case with the Apple Watch now too.

Apple Watch apps and watch faces

Since the original Apple Watch, we’ve seen the company grow its titles that you can use on the watch as well as the amount of watch faces you can switch around to give the screen a different look.

For a full guide to our favorite bits of software on the wearable, check out our best Apple Watch apps guide as well as best Apple Watch games and best Apple Watch faces.

IRL: The 10 Apple Watch apps I use every single dayWhat’s next for the Apple Watch?

If you’re planning to buy an Apple Watch soon, now is quite a good time. We expect Apple will announce a new version of its wearable, but not until around September this year when we expect to see the Apple Watch 4.

Nothing is confirmed yet, but if you want an Apple Watch right now then it’s the perfect time to buy as you won’t find out there’s a new device announced right after you’ve purchased your new watch.

Everything we know so far about the Apple Watch 4

Fire TV Cube: Amazon’s new bid at smart-home simplicity – CNET

Amazon on Thursday unveiled the Fire TV Cube, essentially the love child of a Fire TV streamer and Echo speaker rolled into one boxy design.

The device becomes Amazon’s 11th Alexa-powered gadget, which may seem overwhelming for someone just learning about the company’s smart speaker lineup.

Amazon on Thursday unveiled the Fire TV Cube, essentially the love child of a Fire TV streamer and Echo speaker rolled into one boxy design.

The device becomes Amazon’s 11th Alexa-powered gadget, which may seem overwhelming for someone just learning about the company’s smart speaker lineup. Yet the purpose of this particular device appears to go further than being just another Alexa product, pointing to Amazon’s vision of making our connected homes simpler and more refined, not just jammed with more electronics.

At a briefing earlier this week in a Manhattan hotel, Sandeep Gupta, a Fire TV vice president, gestured toward three separate remotes that operated a nearby TV: there was the cable box remote, the TV remote and the sound bar remote. Using the Cube sitting by the television, he bypassed the familiar juggle of remotes with the help of voice commands and the Cube’s slim remote.

“The goal here is to declutter people’s lives, declutter the complexity of controlling your home entertainment system and make it easier to use,” he said.

Review: Amazon Fire TV Cube is Alexa voice control for your entire AV system

The Cube, which the secretive company uncharacteristically teased out earlier this year, serves as one more element in Amazon’s bid to dominate the smart home. That work includes the company’s portfolio of Echo smart speakers, Ring and Blink security cameras and video doorbells, and its Amazon Key in-home delivery service. But as the company has raced to come up with more and more new gadgets for the home — reportedly even cooking up a home robot — it will likely need to combine more of these devices’ functions and simplify things for us, lest we get confused by all these options or get crushed under a mountain of Amazon doodads.

The Cube may help with that, allowing folks to cut down on all those remotes, and remove the need for separate Fire TV and Echo devices. Those may be small steps, but could eventually add up to a more seamless smart home of the future. That’s the hope, anyways.

The new gadget also highlights Amazon’s work to specialize its Echo devices for every room and scenario in your home, starting with the generalist Echo speaker, then building up to the Echo Look for you closet, Echo Spot for the nightstand and now Fire TV Cube for the entertainment center. The Cube is also part of Amazon’s continued work to add Alexa controls into nearly all its consumer devices, including its Fire tablets and previous Fire TV devices.


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Amazon Fire TV Cube controls your AV system with Alexa

‘Voice is the future’

Walking through a demo of the new Cube, Gupta said Amazon sought to create a device that was more than just a Fire TV streamer with Alexa crammed inside. To that end, the Cube is compatible with nearly all US cable and satellite set-top boxes, as well as streaming apps like Hulu and PlayStation Vue, to allow users to tune to live TV channels via voice. You will still need your cable remote to access your DVR and channel guide, so don’t throw it out just yet.

Also, the Cube is able to control TVs, sound bars and A/V receivers with the help of several forms of connectivity, including infrared, Wi-Fi and HDMI CEC. Using these connections, you could set up your devices so the Cube can turn on the TV, connected lights and sound bar by simply saying, “Alexa, I’m home.”

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The device also takes advantage of being connected to the TV by showing scrolling lyrics when music is playing and showing visuals for certain Alexa skills, such as the clues in the Jeopardy skill. (Similar capabilities are available on the smaller Echo Show and Echo Spot.)

Because the Cube also works as a standalone Alexa speaker, it will play music, operate connected gadgets and tell you the weather when the TV is off.

Amazon said it gave the Cube its shape for a variety of reasons. Because it’s meant to be kept by the TV, its mic arrays are all upfront, unlike all around a cylinder-shaped Echo speaker. Plus, an Echo’s circular light ring would’ve reflected on the TV, so the Cube’s indicator light is only upfront, too. The Cube isn’t a pure cube, though, to prevent the device from blocking the bottom of your TV.

Amazon priced the Cube at $120 and it will become available on June 21 in the US only. Prime members can preorder the device for $90 today and tomorrow.

While Amazon has found success in smart home tech, the market is still new and is bringing in a lot of competition from Google, Apple, Samsung and a variety of startups. Logitech’s universal Harmony remote and even Amazon’s own prior Echo and Fire TV products — which offer many similar features — may stand in the way of the Cube catching on. Additionally, set up of smart-home devices still requires a lot of steps, so that may be a hurdle for customers to adopt the Cube and its various connections to other entertainment devices.

Despite those challenges, Gupta said he sees the Cube as another step in bringing more voice controls — and simplicity — to the smart home.

“We want to use your voice to get quickly to what you want to do,” he said. “And with Alexa, we’ve continued to make that better … We really believe that voice is the future.”

Fight the Power: Take a look at who’s transforming the way we think about energy.

‘Hello, humans’: Google’s Duplex could make Assistant the most lifelike AI yet.

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Amazon Fire TV Cube: This Echo and Fire TV mash-up is an Alexa-powered universal remote, too – CNET

Lots of Alexa owners park their little voice assistants in the kitchen, but Amazon’s latest version aims to dominate another room entirely: the living room.

The Amazon Fire TV Cube infuses your TV and other entertainment gear with the ability to be controlled with just your voice.

Lots of Alexa owners park their little voice assistants in the kitchen, but Amazon’s latest version aims to dominate another room entirely: the living room.

The Amazon Fire TV Cube infuses your TV and other entertainment gear with the ability to be controlled with just your voice. Designed to sit happily in your AV system, this diminutive little box aims to replace a coffee-table full of remotes with “Alexa” voice commands. Or at least keep you from reaching for the clicker quite so much.

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The Cube, first rumored in September 2017 and teased by Amazon last month, is finally official Thursday. It ships June 21 for $120, but Prime members can order one starting now for $90. (It’s US-only for now, but that pricing converts to about £90 or AU$157 and £67 or AU$118, respectively.)

If you’re familiar with Amazon’s products already, consider it a mash-up of the $70 Fire TV, a 4K HDR media streamer with Prime video and oodles of other apps and games, and the $40 Echo Dot, a little speaker with built-in microphones — with some special sauce thrown in. The Cube has Alexa built-in, an HDMI output to feed your TV and an included Ethernet adapter in case you don’t want to use Wi-Fi. Its infrared blasters send control signals to other gear, like the TV, cable box, even an AV receiver or sound bar.


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Amazon Fire TV Cube controls your AV system with Alexa

‘Alexa, turn on the TV’

That infrared control of other devices is what separates the Cube from the standard Fire TV and Echo combination, which Amazon enabled in full last year to impressive effect.

The blasters are built into the Cube itself as well as a separate, included module that can hit gear you’ve tucked into a cabinet. Sandeep Gupta, Amazon’s vice president of Product Development for Amazon Fire TV, walked CNET’s Ben Rubin and I through a demo.

The words “Alexa, I’m home” from Gupta turned on the TV, fired up the sound bar and made the Fire TV home page appear onscreen. He moved through other commands, like “Alexa, show me dramas,” “Alexa, mute” and even “Alexa, show me cat videos on YouTube.” Each worked just as expected, with YouTube launching the Silk browser and navigating right to those cuddly kitties, Google vs. Amazon feud be damned.

Since the Cube “knows” some details about the state of your devices, saying “Alexa, watch Red Oaks” while your system is off would cause it to turn on the TV and other associated gear. In addition to infrared commands, the system can work with CEC, a protocol that sends commands via HDMI cables, and Gupta said the Cube can automatically recognize and set up your connected TV.

How cable boxes and sound gear fit in

While the cube can control some aspects of a cable box, subscribers will need to hang onto their old remotes awhile longer.

Say “Alexa, watch cable TV” to switch the TV input to the cable box, and “Alexa, Watch TNT” or “Alexa, tune to channel 65” to change the live channel on the box channel. The Cube is compatible with boxes from Comcast, DirecTV, Dish and others, covering what Amazon claims is more than 90 percent of households with a cable or satellite subscription.

More advanced commands, for example, browsing the guide, scheduling recordings or playing stuff from a DVR, can’t be done with voice. If you don’t have a cable box, saying “Watch CNN” or another channel can tune to the live channel inside the PlayStation Vue app.

In Gupta’s demo setup, sound was routed through the Sony sound bar, not the TV’s speakers, so the Cube was actually controlling the bar’s volume when he said stuff like “Alexa, volume up” or “Alexa, mute.” He said the system is also compatible with AV receivers, although I’ll wait till the full review to see how well it handles input switching.

Of course, using a sound bar or AV receiver provides a big boost in sound quality over a Dot or Echo speaker, making the Cube a compelling music player too. Since it can fire up your system at a word, it’s potentially just as easy to use as a standalone speaker. Gupta demonstrated music by saying “Alexa, let’s party,” which caused music to start playing over the sound bar, courtesy of Amazon Music, and lyrics to appear onscreen.

Hearing ‘Alexa’ over the blare

One potential issue with placing the Cube near your AV system is interference from your speakers — when a movie is blasting it might be tough for it to “hear” the Alexa keyword, turn down the volume and listen for your next command. The Cube has a redesigned array of eight microphones that work from across the room, and Amazon claims that “Advanced beamforming technology combines the signals from the individual microphones to suppress noise, reverberation, content currently playing, and even competing speech.”

Like Fire TV, the Cube comes with a regular voice remote too, so if your commands can’t be heard, you can always talk into the clicker.

Focused on voice

As usual, each command has to be prefaced with the “Alexa” wake word, but Gupta said there was no need to specify the device — you can just say “Alexa, watch CNN” instead of “Alexa, watch CNN on the cable box.” Grouped commands, aka Alexa routines like Gupta’s “Alexa, I’m home,” can have any name you want.

Other commands that work, after you say the “Alexa” keyword:

“Turn on/off the TV”
“Turn up/down the volume” or “Mute”
“Home” or “Go home” returns to Fire TV home page
“Launch Netflix” or “Launch Hulu” to launch apps
“Play ‘Transparent‘” or “Play ‘Sneaky Pete‘”
“Show dramas” or “Show recent movies”
“Pause,” “Stop,” “Play,” “Rewind” and “Fast-forward”
“Go down” or “Scroll down” navigates through the page

Beyond Amazon Prime video itself, and Amazon Channels like HBO, Starz and Showtime, other apps that allow direct voice commands include Hulu and PlayStation Vue. Amazon says it’s working to add more app support soon.

An updated version of the Fire TV interface includes numbers next to selections to ease voice commands. For example, faced with a screen full of choices you can say “Play number 2” instead of “Play Transparent.”

Should Harmony worry?

Currently I use a Logitech Harmony remote along with a my Alexa at home, and it does a lot of the same things. I can say “Alexa, watch Netflix” and my TV and AV receiver will turn on and switch inputs, and my Roku will fire up the Netflix app. After that, however, I have to pick up the Harmony remote to do anything worthwhile.

With its ability to stream shows from Fire TV at your command, the Cube goes one step further than Harmony. It also brings up the issue of whether voice is actually making things easier. I’d rather browse stuff onscreen using a remote than commands like “Alexa, scroll down,” or pause by clicking the pause button rather than saying “Alexa, pause.” But having the option to do both, especially when the remote goes missing, is pretty cool.

After Amazon’s demo I’m excited to play with the Cube myself and see how it works, in particular how easy it is to program everything. But with the company’s excellent track record making Alexa devices play well with others, the Cube looks pretty slick so far.

Netgear Arlo cameras get person detection, motion zones – CNET

Related linksNetgear’s Arlo Go LTE security camera doesn’t need Wi-FiNetgear is back with a better, smarter Arlo security cameraNetgear’s reliable Arlo Q camera simplifies DIY home security

Netgear’s security cameras just got access to a cloud subscription plan that adds a host of new features.

The company’s lineup of home security cameras, which includes the Arlo Pro 2, the Arlo Pro, the Arlo, the Arlo Go, the Arlo Q and the Arlo Q Plus, gained access to Arlo Smart today.

Arlo cameras still offer 7 days of free activity-based cloud video storage, as well as motion and sound alerts. They also support Alexa and Google Assistant voice commands without a Netgear subscription required.

Netgear’s new cloud subscription plan adds person detection, motion zones, “rich” notifications (meaning the alert includes images from your camera’s live feed), as well as a feature called “e911” designed to connect you quickly to emergency responders. The e911 feature only works in the US. The monthly fee varies depending on your package.


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32 outdoor cameras that take home security seriously

Here’s the overview of Arlo Smart, including pricing:

Arlo Smart Add-on: $3 per month (per camera) for person detection, motion zones and rich notifications.

Arlo Smart Premier: $10 per month for person detection, motion zones, rich notifications and e911. The Premier service also extends the video storage period from one week to 30 days. It works with up to 10 Arlo cameras.

Arlo Smart Elite: $15 per month for person detection, motion zones, rich notifications and e911. The Elite service extends the video storage period from 30 days to 60 days and it works with up to 20 Arlo cameras.

Arlo Smart plans are optional and available on a month-to-month basis without any contract terms or termination fees. Read more about them here.

Given that Canary offers person alerts and motion zones for free, I’m not sure Netgear is doing us any huge favors with this update. Even Nest, which historically over-charges for features, now offers free person alerts on its IQ cams. At least Netgear is updating its features to stay competitive with what’s in the DIY security camera market today.

Its most compelling addition might be e911, which Netgear claims “guides emergency responders directly to your home, no matter where you call from.”

We plan to test out these features in short order, so check back soon for updates on the Arlo Smart service.

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Best GoPro camera 2018: ultimate action cams and the best GoPro accessories

First sold in 2004 as a waterproof 25mm film camera for shooting action sports, the GoPro has gone on to become the world’s best-selling action camera. Current models like the Hero6 Black are small, lightweight and offer up to 4K video recording alongside a host of advanced stills and video recording features.

First sold in 2004 as a waterproof 25mm film camera for shooting action sports, the GoPro has gone on to become the world’s best-selling action camera. Current models like the Hero6 Black are small, lightweight and offer up to 4K video recording alongside a host of advanced stills and video recording features. GoPro cameras can be taken anywhere, and attached to almost anything.

But what’s the best GoPro camera? That depends a little on what you want from one of these action cameras, as they each offer something a little different, while they vary quite a bit in price.

Don’t worry though as we’ll take a look at each GoPro action camera, highlight the key features of each, and who they’re most suited to. Once you’ve picked out the perfect GoPro camera for you, we’ll take a look at some of the best accessories you can attach your GoPro too.

The 10 best action cameras you can buy right nowBest GoPro cameras

It might look the same as the Hero5 Black on the outside, but quite a bit has changed on the inside. This includes a new GP1 processing engine, which sees the Hero6 Black capable of shooting super high-quality 4K footage at 60fps. A first for a GoPro. The image stabilization system is now much more sophisticated, while the Hero6 Black’s voice control also now features a Wake On Voice function. For stills, dynamic range and low-light performance is better than the Hero5 Black, while you can shoot raw files as well. Like the Hero5 Black and Hero, the Hero6 Black is waterproof down to 10m without the need for an additional case, while there’s a pretty easy to use 2-inch touchscreen. If you want the best action camera, this is it.

Read our in-depthGoPro Hero6 Black review

It may no longer sit at the top of the GoPro range, but don’t discount the Hero5 Black as it still has a lot to offer. It might not be able to shoot at 60fps in 4K like the Hero6 Black, but most people should be more than satisfied with the 4K 30fps footage the Hero5 Black captures. It’s not short on other features either, with a 2-inch touchscreen, waterproof down to 10m without the need for a protective case, voice control and GPS. Simple to use, the QuikStories app (available of all GoPros) automatically transfers and edits your footage for you, meaning you can share footage before you’re even home. A great allrounder of an action camera that should be more than enough for most users.

Read our in-depthGoPro Hero5 Black review

This is GoPro’s back to basics action camera. First off – it doesn’t shoot 4K. However, it does shoot nice and smooth Full HD footage. Using the same body as the higher priced models means its also waterproof down to 10m and supports a 2-inch touchscreen. There are better specified-action cameras out there for a similar price, but they don’t have the refined design and polished control of the Hero. The Hero is a great camera for the novice or casual user who just wants to capture the action without worrying about which frame rate or resolution they should be using.

Read our in-depthGoPro Hero review

While the Hero5 Session is no longer in the GoPro line-up, it’s still widely available. Sharing many of the same features as the Hero5 Black, the Hero5 Session can shoot 4K video at 30fps, and comes with image stabilization, voice control and is waterproof down to 10m. There’s no rear display though, simply a large Record button on the top that starts and stops. If you want to see what you’re recording and set different modes and options, this is all handled by the app (though it does have a simple menu system if you wish). Back to basics, but still captures the quality of video that you’d expect from GoPro.

Read our in-depthGoPro Hero5 Session

Best GoPro accessories

Whether you’re a professional videographer, photographer or simply someone enjoying the convenience of a small camera, GoPros have opened up new possibilities thanks to the help of innovative accessories. This means the market for accessories is huge, and the options available potentially more diverse than any other camera system. From camera mounts to lights to microphones to filters to 360° time-lapse and more, there are almost infinite ways to pimp your GoPro.

The Manfrotto PIXI Xtreme is a version of the popular mini tripod designed for use with GoPros thanks to the addition of a GoPro tripod mount adaptor. The PIXI Xtreme weights just 197g so you won’t even know you’re carrying it, and with a folded length of 21.5cm it will fit into almost any bag or even a pocket. The extended height of the tripod is 16.5cm, with simple ball head offering 360° rotation for positioning the camera. To get the height you need in some situations the PIXI Xtreme will need to be positioned on a wall or table.

If you’re fed-up getting shaky footage from your GoPro movies, you need a gimbal and the Removu S1 is a brilliant choice. The 3-axis stabilising gimbal is designed for use with GoPro’s Hero3, Hero4, Hero5 action cams, as well as its Session cameras. Delivering super-smooth footage and offering three main control modes (Pan, Follow and Lock), the Removu S1 is also rainproof, so you can carry on using it when the elements turn against you. It features a detachable handgrip, a removable battery, wireless remote control and is fully compatible with the GoPro range of helmet, body and bike mounts.

One of the appeals of GoPro action cameras is that they can be mounted remotely. If you want a tough, durable and dependable system, then the Rokk Mini is a great option. At its core is this adjustable mount, which you can then attach a wide range of bases to, including this suction cup pictured here. We tried this combo when attaching a GoPro to the bodywork of a car, with the rigid hold of the cup securely holding the camera in place. To complete the system, you’ll need to also invest in a top plate (there’s a dedicated GoPro top plate).

With the fantastic options shooting timelapse stills and video with GoPro cameras, a simple way to create dynamic results is to make the camera rotate during shooting. The GoPole Scenelapse allows you to do just that, offering a rotation of 360° over the course of 60 minutes. Simply set up your GoPro, wind the unit and let it do its thing. The GoPole Scenelapse is fully mechanical so no batteries are required, and it features a standard tripod screw on the bottom allowing you to attach it to a mini or full size tripod. On the top is a removable GoPro mount with a high torque thumb screw, so you can attach your GoPro or even a small DSLR or mirrorless camera. The small and easy to use unit weighs just 85g/3oz and is compatible with all GoPro cameras.

The Tenba Shootout 14L ActionPack is designed to allow you to comfortably carry a large GoPro system while you’re participating in an action sport or simply exploring the city or countryside. At just 1.4kg the bag is lightweight and the padded straps with waist belt make it comfortable and secure. Inside the bag are four removable pods, and two wallets, so you can organise your kit and gain quick and easy access to exactly what you need. The capacity of the bag allows you to carry up to four GoPros, mounts, batteries, cables and other accessories etc. Plus there’s enough room to carry a small hydration pouch and food. There’s even a tripod attachment at the bottom of the bag large enough to accommodate a travel tripod.

The GoPro Remo is a waterproof (up to 5m/16ft) voice controlled remote for the Hero 5 Black and Hero 5 Session cameras. This means that while both cameras offer built-in voice activation, the Remo is said to improve voice activation in noisy conditions and allows you to activate the cameras from a short distance, or works as a one button remote from up to 10m/33ft away. The Remo comes with a strap allowing it to be worn on your wrist for convenience. It can also be clipped to clothing. With 13 commands available the Remo certainly adds convenience to shooting but it’s not cheap for what it is. And unlike the older GoPro WiFi remote there’s no screen so you rely on voice commands and scrolling through functions.

One of the problems of travelling with a GoPro is that battery life is obviously finite. You can of course buy an extra battery or two, but if you’re out in the field and away from a power outlet, charging can be difficult. Plus, if you’re shooting a long time-lapse you can’t change batteries part way through. While GoPro does manufacture its own portable power pack, the Anker Powercore 20100 provides a much higher capacity at a seriously low price in comparison. Anker claim the pack can charge smartphones up to seven times, and can even charge a MacBook using USB-C, so plenty of juice for GoPro cameras and you can even charge up to three devices at once! To ensure the safety of your devices the Powercore features smart-charging PowerIQ and current-stabilising VoltageBoost providing the fastest possible safe charge up to 2.4 A. Then there’s surge protection and short circuit prevention.

The GoPro Pro 3.5mm Microphone Adapter allows you to connect professional microphones with a 3.5mm jack to your Hero5 Black or Hero5 Session camera. This allows you to drastically improve sound compared to the camera’s built-in microphone. So whether you want to use a lapel, condenser or shotgun mic etc. this is an essential accessory. The adaptor connects to GoPros via, and is powered by USB-C, allowing for stereo sound to be recorded. It also features a 106dB stereo analogue to digital converter. With the GoPro Pro 3.5mm Microphone Adapter in use the GoPro side door will be open so the camera will no longer be waterproof, but this accessory is geared more towards vlogging than capturing great action sound.

Whether you’re skiing, mountain biking, white water rafting, or any other activity, GoPro’s chest mount is a great piece of kit to not only capture the action. Fully adjustable to fit a wide range of adult sizes, the placement’s great for getting some unique angled shots, though you will have to move your whole body to change the framing.

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