Apple promises Xbox Series X controller support on iPhone in a future update

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Apple promises Xbox Series X controller support on iPhone in a future updateMicrosoft’s Xbox controllers have generally been easy to use on non-Xbox devices over the years, and Apple confirmed the same will be true with the new Xbox Series X gamepad in the future.

The folks over at 9to5Mac spotted a small text blurb on Apple’s support website with good news for iOS gamers: The controller included with the Xbox Series X will work with iPhones and iPads after an upcoming software update. Unfortunately, there’s not much information beyond that; Apple didn’t give a timeframe for when to expect the update, but it did say it was working with Microsoft directly to make it happen. Read more…

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Douglas, the latest step toward realistic AI, is unsettling

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Douglas, the latest step toward realistic AI, is unsettlingThere’s something off about Douglas. 

He’s touted by his creators as the “most realistic real-time autonomous digital human in the world.” If that’s true, then I don’t think the best the world has to offer is quite good enough.

Douglas is being developed by Digital Domain, a visual effects titan that has worked on movies including Titanic and the last two Avengers releases, as well as video games like Destiny and Assassin’s Creed Odyssey. He’s certainly an impressive creation visually, but once conversations get rolling, you can really tell that he’s an imposter.

Digital Domain modeled Douglas off of its senior director of software R&D, Doug Roble, capturing his facial structure, movements, and mannerisms from all angles, as well as his voice. By creating as realistic a model as possible, the goal of Douglas is to make conversations between humans and machines feel easier and more natural. Read more…

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Free Zoom alternative: Microsoft Teams lets 300 users video chat for 24 hours

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Free Zoom alternative: Microsoft Teams lets 300 users video chat for 24 hoursThis year has been a huge year for Zoom, as families and friends around the world have turned to the video chat service to stay in touch during the COVID-19 pandemic. Microsoft Teams just barreled into the room to make Zoom look a little silly by comparison.

According to The Verge, Microsoft’s primarily business-focused video call app is getting a free tier with a 24-hour time limit on calls just in time for the holidays. 

As many as 300 people can jam into one room, with a gallery view that can display up to 49 of them on one screen. (Zoom has a max of 100 participants for Basic and Pro users.) There’s also a feature called Together Mode that will arrange everyone’s video feeds so it looks like they’re sitting together in a theater or coffee shop. If your family is that big, feel free to go nuts with Microsoft Teams — and good luck following the conversation. Read more…

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Buy a quality 65-inch 4K TV on sale before the Black Friday rush hits

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Buy a quality 65-inch 4K TV on sale before the Black Friday rush hitsSave $200: The Hisense 65-inch H9F 4K Android smart ULED TV is $799.99 at Amazon as of Nov. 19. 


It’s time to get a plan together for your upcoming Black Friday shopping spree. There are already plenty of deals live on everything from iPhones to video games. But don’t forget that it’s a great time to buy a new TV, and Amazon has an early Black Friday discount on a very highly rated 4K TV that’s perfect for this year’s new Hallmark Christmas movies. 

Buy the Hisense 65-inch H9F 4K Android ULED smart TV for just $799.99 at Amazon. You save $200 off the regular price as well as qualify for free Prime shipping. That’s the best price right now on a 4K TV listed as an Editors’ Choice by our friends at PCMag. Read more…

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One of the best Acer Chromebooks is $80 off at Best Buy

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One of the best Acer Chromebooks is $80 off at Best BuySave $80: The new Acer Chromebook Spin 713 with a 10th Generation Intel i5-10210U processor is $549 for Black Friday at Best Buy as of Nov. 17. 


Not many of us have the budget for a brand new MacBook, even if you factor in Black Friday deals. But frankly, most of us get by just fine with a more affordable option. And affordability doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice quality when it comes to plenty of laptops. Especially when you consider this special offer on the newest Acer Chromebook at Best Buy. 

Buy the Acer Chromebook Spin 713 13.5-inch 2-in-1 laptop for just $549 at Best Buy. That’s $80 off the latest model that includes a 10th Generation Intel i5-10210U processor, 8GB RAM, and 128GB SSD. Best Buy sweetens the deal with six months free of Trend Micro Internet Security, plus get 30% off a Logitech M355 wireless mouse when you bundle it with this Chromebook. Read more…

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Save on a powerful air purifier that doubles as a night light

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Save on a powerful air purifier that doubles as a night lightTL;DR: Breathe better air with the PURO²XYGEN P500 Air Purifier, on sale for $144.47 as of Nov. 16. 


If you’ve been looking for an air purifier, it might be worth looking a little harder at the PURO²XYGEN P500 Air Purifier, which happens to be on sale for Black Friday this year.

This is not a flimsy, lightweight purifier made for teeny tiny spaces. Rather, this smart purifier is designed to remove a large percentage of airborne contaminants in spaces up to 550 square feet. Its smart technology also makes it super easy to use consistently. Use the remote control or set it on automatic mode to let it do its thing. And it’s quiet, so it won’t disturb you while you sleep or work. Read more…

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The Elvie breast pump is a good product that you might not need right now

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The Elvie breast pump is a good product that you might not need right nowTo review the list of places I’ve used the Elvie pump is to catalog the activities I used to do in the Before Times: Go to the office and stay there all day, meet friends at bars, see movies in theaters, travel to visit family for holidays. The pump made those things easier and more convenient, but I don’t know how to evaluate it when nearly all of them are off the table.

The Elvie pump as a product represents a conundrum for many women. Do we spend money on ourselves? How much is comfort and convenience worth? How much marginal comfort and convenience is needed to be worth the money? Breastfeeding, for its health and bonding benefits, is a time-consuming activity. There is a limit to how nice pumping breastmilk can be – a limit I’d call “aggressively fine.” To buy the Elvie pump is to claim whatever long-overdue engineering improvements can be had, and to make pumping more compatible with a wider range of activities. But in an era where leaving home for long periods and traveling are broadly inaccessible, it almost seems like a solution in search of a problem.  Read more…

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Apple’s macOS Big Sur: What you need to know

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Apple's macOS Big Sur: What you need to knowCongratulations to those of you who have been patiently waiting almost half a year for the arrival of Apple’s latest operating system, macOS Big Sur, because it’s finally here and available for download. 

It’s not Apple’s biggest Mac overhaul, but there are still some worthy and interesting updates. The new OS comes with some exciting improvements including a revamped design, a speedier Safari web browser, “new” iMessage features, and more. 

But at the end of the day, it’s an operating system that simply powers your computer. So, I won’t bore you with the details of what my full experience has been like while using it or suggest whether or not to make the switch.  Read more…

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Save over $60 on a pair of wireless and noise-canceling Sony earbuds

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Save over $60 on a pair of wireless and noise-canceling Sony earbudsSave $61.99: As of Nov. 13, the Sony WF-1000XM3 earbuds are on sale for $168 on Amazon. 


Since working from home, there’s probably a ton of distractions you’re trying to clear from your mind. While the classic look of a pair of Beats headphones will never fade, you don’t need giant over-the-ear headphones to block out any unwanted sound. Thanks to upgraded noise cancellation technology from brands like Sony, all you need is a tiny pair of earbuds. 

The Sony WF-1000XM3 Noise Canceling Truly Wireless earbuds are on sale for just $168 on Amazon, and we’re viewing it as a sneak peek into what Black Friday will bring this year.  Read more…

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