Features

Living with Amazon Fire TV: Two Months On

Living with Amazon Fire TV: Two Months On

Amazon's Fire TV set-top box arrived to shake up an increasingly crowded home entertainment segment, but does it have what it takes to set the living room alight? The squared-off streamer has been hooked up to my TV for two months now, piping Prime on-demand video among other things, but has the new gadget honeymoon ended?

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iCloud, M7 and Context: WWDC paves way to iWatch

iCloud, M7 and Context: WWDC paves way to iWatch

WWDC 2014 is over, and while it may not have brought us new hardware, it did give iOS 8 and OS X Yosemite their official reveal, key software launches in Apple’s master plan. As is so often the case, though, the devil is in the details, and in among the developer sessions a picture of context, device ubiquity, and cross-platform identity gradually made itself clear; one which could have huge implications for Apple’s upcoming push into wearables.

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Looking Glass: The apps for must-wear wearables

Looking Glass: The apps for must-wear wearables

Has Glass gone off the boil? Google's wearable launched in Explorer beta form to great fanfare, but privacy concerns, criticisms of "Glasshole" arrogance, and legitimate doubts about the value of what it actually offers have left the headset on questionable ground. I love the idea of wearables but I don't often put Glass on any more, which got me thinking: what could Glass do to make it a must-wear?

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The Surface Pro 3 Opportunity

The Surface Pro 3 Opportunity

Third time looks to have been the charm for Microsoft, with the Surface Pro 3 proving to be a surprise hit among most reviewers - even those who are usually ardent Apple fans. As Vincent’s glowing judgement of the adaptable tablet suggests, there’s a lot of value to be found in a flexible form-factor. The glaring omission, though, is in not taking that flexibility to its logical conclusion: it wouldn’t take much for Microsoft to really tip Surface into must-have territory.

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Here’s how Apple iOS 8 HomeKit works

Here’s how Apple iOS 8 HomeKit works

Apple has set its sights on the smart home, and HomeKit is how it plans to dominate it, promising a more cohesive automation experience by becoming the glue that holds everything together. HomeKit won’t launch officially until iOS 8 arrives on iPhones and iPads later this year, but developers and accessory manufacturers are already being let into the loop so they can get their software and hardware ready. Read on to find out exactly how it works.

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Blurred Lines: Melding Mac and iOS into one Apple life

Blurred Lines: Melding Mac and iOS into one Apple life

There’s more to breaking down the barriers between desktop and mobile than making the UIs on an iPhone and a MacBook look alike, and Apple used its WWDC 2014 opening keynote to hint at how. Continuity came up several times during the presentation, on both the OS X and the iOS sides, explaining how later this year our Macs and iPhones will work together to transfer tasks as you move between them. Yet the potential for Continuity goes far further than just giving you a bigger keyboard to finish your email on.

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ST Octane Academy: Ultimate owner driving experience

ST Octane Academy: Ultimate owner driving experience

Take a compact car, add a meaty engine, and you’ve got a recipe for success, and Ford is aiming to show drivers just how fun its high-performance small cars can be. Held at Miller Motorsports Park in Tooele, Utah, the ST Octane Academy puts new Focus ST and Fiesta ST owners on the track with racing instructors to make sure they’re getting the best out of their cars. Ford invited me along to try my hand at the wheel.

There’s an art for squeezing the fastest lap times and the most fun out of a fast - but not supercar fast - car. In a supercar you almost certainly fall short of nudging its limits (my time behind the wheel of the Lamborghini Aventador was evidence of that) and can generally count on electronics and power to get you out of most situations.

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iOS 8 round-up: Apple paves the way for hardware

iOS 8 round-up: Apple paves the way for hardware

Apple’s newest version of their mobile operating system, iOS 8, builds on the look and feel of iOS 7. Inside you’ll find a number of feature updates on the surface, but - especially important since it was introduced at a developer conference - you’ll find more underneath the surface than meets the eye. Apple suggests that iOS 8 is "Huge for developers. Massive for everyone else."

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