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The Bixby button is the bane of my mobile existence

The Bixby button is the bane of my mobile existence

Samsung made a controversial decision with its flagship Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+ smartphones: to include a physical button for summoning Bixby, the personal assistant that wasn't finished upon the handsets' launch. Some people were okay with the button's existence when the option (briefly and unofficially) existed to remap it. Samsung squashed that ability, though, and now we're left with a button that is, for many of us, really annoying and completely useless.

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$1,000 Note 8: Should you preorder now, or wait

$1,000 Note 8: Should you preorder now, or wait

Nobody expected the Samsung Galaxy Note 8 to be inexpensive, but are you ready to splash out almost a thousand dollars on a cutting-edge smartphone? That's the question many would-be Note 8 buyers find themselves asking today, as the carriers weigh in with just how much the brand new phablet will cost you. While promotions, preorder deals, and fine print varies, one thing is for sure: the average shopper shouldn't expect to get much change from $1k.

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Note 8 is a no-brainer upgrade for Note 5 owners

Note 8 is a no-brainer upgrade for Note 5 owners

The Note 8 finds itself in an unusual upgrade situation. Usually, when a brand new version of a smartphone series launches - whether it be an Android phone like Samsung's Galaxy, or Apple's latest iPhone - the big question for early-adopters is "should I upgrade from last year's model?" For the Note 8, though, last year's model just isn't around any more.

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Jurassic World Evolution is the game I’ve always wanted (so please don’t screw it up)

Jurassic World Evolution is the game I’ve always wanted (so please don’t screw it up)

Jurassic World Evolution is a game I've been waiting years to play. To understand why, we need to go all the way back to 2003, when a long-forgotten game called Jurassic Park: Operation Genesis launched on Xbox, PlayStation 2, and PC. Operation Genesis, like Jurassic World Evolution, tasked you with creating your own Jurassic Park, and it was a sublime experience that was sadly limited by console technology at the time.

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The Essential Phone is a huge work-in-progress

The Essential Phone is a huge work-in-progress

You have to give the Essential Phone credit for managing to carve out a spot in our attention, given what a phone-heavy year 2017 is turning out to be. On the one hand, Samsung is about to make its play for phablet redemption with the Galaxy Note 8, successor to the ill-fated (and fiery) Note 7. Shortly after, we'll get to close the book on all the rumors around what could be Apple's most dramatic iPhone upheaval in years, as the iPhone 8 makes its much-anticipated debut.

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Android OEM customizations are never going away, and that’s OK

Android OEM customizations are never going away, and that’s OK

There was some small amount of rejoicing within the Android community when Lenovo revealed that it would be putting its custom “Pure Vibe” skin to rest, starting with the K8 Note that was launched last week. As if in juxtaposition, Xiaomi is about to start the rollout of the latest version of its own custom experience, the MIUI 9. As much as Google and some Android users want to be rid of them, custom OEM modifications to stock Android aren’t going anywhere soon. And that’s perfectly OK because, like any other dichotomy in Android, it helps the platform grow to some extent.

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Laptops for back-to-school students: best budget to top-tier models

Laptops for back-to-school students: best budget to top-tier models

Later this month, thousands of students will return to college, and thousands more will be heading out for their first semester. Just as necessary as dorm room mini-fridges and a comfortable backpack is a laptop, the tool through which you will complete seemingly endless course work and Netflix binging. Whether you're in the market for a top-tier laptop that'll last you four plus years or just something cheap to get you through your first semester, this list has got you covered.

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Streaming Networks Separate : Is this the future we want?

Streaming Networks Separate : Is this the future we want?

As Disney announces its own streaming service separate from Netflix, the wave of network-owned streaming services begins. Soon we'll find that every big media provider has its own streaming service, and we'll have the opportunity to select what we want, when we want, for a fee. A fee that goes to each company, individually, every month.

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Microsoft Surface vs Consumer Reports: What you need to know

Microsoft Surface vs Consumer Reports: What you need to know

Microsoft might be reconsidering its Consumer Reports subscription today, with the news that the Surface Laptop and Surface Book have both been stripped of their "recommended" status. Concerns about reliability of the Surface line-up as a whole have prompted the review organization to backtrack on its awards, in addition to suggesting that the Surface Pro shouldn't be among your top considerations for a 2-in-1 hybrid, either. Microsoft is suitably outraged, as you'd expect, and indeed there are some big questions around just what Consumer Reports is testing and how they're doing that.

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Originator of web’s Password Rules admits he was wrong

Originator of web’s Password Rules admits he was wrong

A complicated, mixed up password is not any more secure than a password that's all lower-cased letters. The reason the internet told us (and continues to tell us) to make a password with numbers and capital and lower-cased characters and punctuation in it is a paper called "Digital Identity Guidelines." This nightmare of a paper was published at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), and the rules therein were based on pre-digital age security nonsense.

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ASUS Zenfone AR: 5 reasons you want this phone

ASUS Zenfone AR: 5 reasons you want this phone

The ASUS Zenfone AR is officially available to buy from Verizon, and you may be considering picking one up yourself. If you're still on the fence, take note: there's a lot to like about this phone, which was first launched back during CES 2017 (hands-on here). As its name suggests, this phone brings with it augmented reality capabilities, but what, exactly, does the phone offer to make it so appealing? Here are five key things.

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Apple’s next big thing is not an iPhone

Apple’s next big thing is not an iPhone

The next big thing from Apple won't be a piece of hardware - it won't be the fabled iPhone 8. The next big product to come from Apple will work on the next top-tier iPhone, but it wont work exclusively on that device. While it's the hardware we continue to focus on, and the hardware that's always easiest to discuss, it's something far more complicated (and yet exceedingly easy to work with) that'll change the way we see the world.

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