Microsoft’s new Mac vs. PC ad gets a guy named ‘Mac Book’ to diss Apple

Apple and Microsoft have a storied history of duking it out on TV, often cleverly sniping at each other in a series of iconic Mac vs. PC ads. But Microsoft’s latest campaign is a rather low blow — it apparently found a guy named Mackenzie Book (Mac Book, get it?) to testify that the Surface Laptop 2 is a better buy than a MacBook. Imagine the audacity of combing the world for a single actor with the right name, just so you can arrive at the punchline “Mac Book says get a Surface Laptop” without an army of lawyers breathing down your throat. Would Apple stoop to finding a “Mike Rosoft” to tout a new iPad? I think not. It’s …

Vizio starts rolling out Apple’s AirPlay 2 and HomeKit to its TVs

Image: Vizio Vizio is the latest TV maker to launch support for Apple’s AirPlay 2, which makes it easy to play content from an iOS device or Mac on the larger screen, and HomeKit. HomeKit integration allows people to control the TV using Apple’s Home app or with Siri voice commands. Vizio has started rolling out an update to its SmartCast 3.0 software that includes support for both, but it notes it’s a process that’ll continue through “the coming months” before all compatible sets are updated. Speaking of which, Vizio is far exceeding other TV manufacturers in terms of how many past and present models are eligible for AirPlay 2 and HomeKit. SmartCast TVs dating back to 2016 will receive …

Brain-computer interfaces are developing faster than the policy debate around them

Illustration by James Bareham / The Verge A few days ago, Facebook disentangled itself from a nettlesome investigation by the Federal Trade Commission into how the company violated users’ privacy. And then, with that matter now squarely behind it, Facebook on Tuesday stepped forward to share some information about its effort to read our minds. Two years after the company announced its mind-reading initiative, Facebook has an update to share. The company sponsored an experiment conducted by researchers at the University of California San Francisco in which they built an interface for decoding spoken dialogue from brain signals. The results were published today in Nature Communication. The work itself is fascinating, as you might expect from the subject matter. Brain-computer… …

How to watch the 2020 Democratic debate, even if you don’t have CNN

Let the debates begin (again)! The second round of Democratic debates kicks off Tuesday night at the Fox Theatre in Detroit, Michigan. As with the first round of debates last month, July’s debate will be split into two nights across Tuesday and Wednesday this week. Sharing the stage for the Tuesday half is author Marianne Williamson; Ohio Rep. Tim Ryan; Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar; South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg; Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders; Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren; former Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke, former Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, former Maryland Rep. John Delaney, and Montana Gov. Steve Bullock. The debate can be watched by cable and satellite TV subscribers on CNN. It can also be streamed on the CNN homepage …

Apple’s next iPhone event will take place on September 10th

Apple has sent out invitations for its annual iPhone event on September 10th, where the company is widely expected to announce the iPhone 11. The event will take place at the company’s Apple Park headquarters in Cupertino, California. Although Apple’s invitation doesn’t explicitly say what the company plans to announce at the event, the rumors suggest we’ll see three new iPhone models, and these will act as successors to the iPhone XR, XS, and XS Max. Two of these phones are expected to feature Apple’s first triple-camera system on the rear of the device, and the successor to the XS could also have a slightly bigger 6.1-inch display (up from 5.8 inches on the current model). New iPhones and maybe …

Get over your ’90s tech nostalgia

Welcome to Dial Up, Mashable’s most excellent look at technology in the ’90s, from the early days of the World Wide Web to the clunky gadgets that won our hearts.   Ahh, the ’90s. Peak culture, for many of us.  3D computer graphics were revolutionizing video games and movies, everyone wore oversized clothes, and the Backstreet Boys were busy duking it out with *NSYNC for boy band supremacy. In 2019, the world is seemingly on fire every day. More specifically, technology has made everything just a little too connected. With all of our devices — phones, laptops, tablets, and TVs — now connected to the internet in one way or another, there’s no way to escape anything. Ever. FOMO pervades all …

Leaked Google Pixel 4 photos confirm questionable design choices

Google’s not even trying to hide the Pixel 4 anymore. Following a summer of teasing images and pre-announcing new features for the Pixel 4, which is expected to launch in October, alleged photos of the Android phone in the wild have now surfaced. According to XDA-Developers, the two photos of the Pixel 4 were reportedly shared via their Telegram group and seemingly confirm what we already know about the device: it’ll have a bezel above the screen for a shrunken version of Google’s Soli radar sensor and a large-ish square-shaped bump on the rear that houses two cameras. The Google Pixel 4 may have just leaked yet again – Check out these new images! https://t.co/XXRmEI8Kig pic.twitter.com/X12tiZwgfE — XDA Developers (@xdadevelopers) …

New Realme Q series officially arriving on September 5

Realme is having an event in China to introduce its new Q series. The announcement was made on Weibo by the company CMO Xu Qi Chase, who said four new products will be announced. This might sound like four Realme Q smartphones, but in reality we expect the Realme 5, Realme 5 Pro, Realme XT and Realme Q1 on stage. The post on Weibo does not say much about the specs of the phone. We should see another device with four cameras on the back, since the company’s Weibo profile is all about the “four-cam era”. One assumption that could be made is a device with the same design on the back -… Read more: gsmarena.com

Realme 5’s first sale moves over 120,000 units

The Realme 5 went on sale for the first time in India on August 27, and the phone has turned out to be a resounding success for the Oppo spinoff company. Realme CEO Madhav Sheth has triumphantly announced on Twitter that more than 120,000 units of the phone were moved as part of that first sale. Another sale was planned for later in the day, to appease fans who weren’t able to get a device the first time around. The next sale of the Realme 5 is on August 30 at 12 PM local time, when you’ll be able to grab one from the company’s own official website as well as Flipkart. 120,000 units and… Read more: gsmarena.com

Facebook just published an update on its futuristic brain-typing project

A prototype of a non-invasive headset design — which wasn’t used in the typing experiment. | Facebook Reality Labs Facebook has released an update on its ambitious plans for a brain-reading computer interface, thanks to a team of Facebook Reality Labs-backed scientists at the University of California, San Francisco. The UCSF researchers just published the results of an experiment in decoding people’s speech using implanted electrodes. Their work demonstrates a method of quickly “reading” whole words and phrases from the brain — getting Facebook slightly closer to its dream of a noninvasive thought-typing system. People can already type with brain-computer interfaces, but those systems often ask them to spell out individual words with a virtual keyboard. In this experiment, which …

Apple confirms the Apple Card is coming in August

The Apple Card, the company’s credit card that was announced at its services event this past spring, will begin accepting applications in August, the company confirmed during its 2019 third fiscal quarter earnings call. “Thousands of Apple employees are using the Apple Card every day in a beta test and we will begin to roll out the Apple Card in August,” Apple CEO Tim Cook said. The Apple Card will come in both a digital and a physical, titanium card form. However, the Apple Card won’t use a traditional 16-digit card number, CVV code, or expiration date as a personal identifier. Instead, it will generate those numbers randomly during each transaction to keep purchases secure. The numbers are also generated …

How to check your Android phone’s notifications on a Windows PC

Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge It’s been a long time coming, but Microsoft finally has its own system for managing Android notifications from Windows. This system makes it possible to see notifications from your Android phone on your Windows 10 PC as they arrive and to pull up your entire SMS history along with any pending notifications on demand. You can even reply to messages and compose new texts right from your computer. Here’s how to get started. On your Windows 10 computer First, make sure you have the latest version of the Your Phone app: Open the Microsoft Store, and search for “Your Phone” If the app isn’t already installed, install it If the app is installed, …

Vivo shows off Nex 3 in pre-launch video

Vivo’s promotion of its upcoming third Nex phone continues today with a short but surprisingly extensive video that pretty much shows off the whole device. Posted to the official Nex Weibo account, the video features people using the phone around the world, confirming aspects of the phone that were previously detailed in sketches. Here’s the “waterfall” curved glass: Here’s the back panel, with its supposedly watch-inspired circular camera bump: Here’s a pop-up selfie camera, which we hadn’t seen before and which looks to be larger than the unit on the original Nex: And here’s that waterfall screen again, next to what appears to be the phone’s packaging: There’s still a lot to… Continue reading… Read more: theverge.com

Apple baits Trump by saying it wants to keep making Mac Pro in the US

Photo by Nilay Patel / The Verge During this afternoon’s call with investors, Apple CEO Tim Cook said that the company aims to assemble the 2019 Mac Pro in the United States — just as it did with the previous “trash can” design of the high-end desktop. Apple highlighted the US assembly of that device and even made a video promoting it. But the company made no mention of having the same plans for the Mac Pro it revealed at WWDC in June. Yet according to Cook, US assembly is exactly why Apple requested an exclusion from the US government’s tariffs on importing goods from China. If Apple gets hit with an added fee for those parts, it might consider …

Wyze launches $15 pair of smart plugs for controlling your home appliances

Image: Wyze Smart home appliance maker Wyze is expanding its lineup to include a new connected wall plug that’s up for preorder today in a pack of two for $15. The device is pretty standard: it connects to an outlet, communicates with the Wyze mobile app, and lets you monitor and control power to whatever happens to be plugged in, be it a lamp or a coffee maker. It works with Amazon’s Alexa and Google Assistant, but notably not Apple’s HomeKit, as is the case with a lot of smart plugs out there. It also has some nice features, like scheduling, a 15 amp maximum load for more power-hungry devices, and a vacation mode that turns on certain lighting appliances …

It’s back to the future trying to get my BT broadband to work

Openreach engineers said someone has to cancel for a space to become available … in London I am seemingly stuck in the 1970s – unable to get a working phone line/broadband from BT. When my broadband failed in mid June, Openreach engineers traced the fault to the local cabinet. After a great deal of tooing and froing BT says it can’t be repaired and the cabinet is at 100% capacity and nothing can be done to restore my broadband for a month. It seems the only way I will be connected is if someone in that cabinet cancels and a space becomes available. BT has provided me with a 4G hotspot device which provides limited wifi but it’s not reliable …