How We (Millennials) Use Tech to “Adult”!

millennial using cellphone
Many millennials use technology to help with everyday “adulting”.

There is no question that access to technology is a major mark of the millennial generation. And, being on the young end of the millennial spectrum, it’s especially hard for us to remember a time without things like the internet. So it makes a lot of sense that we’re so comfortable integrating tech into our adult lives. In fact, we do most of our “adulting” with technology.

It’s not that we need different things than the generations before us. We still want happy relationships, good jobs, financial stability and much more… it’s just that the way we do or achieve these things is different… often because of tech! Keep reading to see all the ways we (millennials) use technology to help us “adult”. read more

5G: Everything You Need to Know Before Its Launch.

the current iPhones are not 5G compatible.
iPhones currently on the market will not be compatible with 5G.

There’s a lot of buzz around 5G right now. And of course, questions always come hand-in-hand with buzzwords.

So, keep reading this post for a deeper dive on what 5G is, how it differs from current mobile technology, and how it could change our lives.

What is 5G?

5G is the newest generation of mobile technology (aka the cellular data your smartphone uses to make calls, browse the internet or stream content). We currently mainly use 4G LTE, or 3G in areas with worse connectivity. In Canada, we can expect 5G to roll out sometime in 2020, although other countries may see it launch this year! read more

4 Things to Consider Before Buying New Headphones

Apple EarPod Headphones

Like all personal devices and gadgets, your choice of headphones is deeply personal and dependent on what you’re using them for. But, it’s good to know different options and trends before you spend money on them.

So, we’ve created a list of things that we think are the most important to consider before purchasing one of the most-used tech accessories in the market. The list also includes some headphone features that are newer trends that you should know about!

Keep reading to learn more before you buy your next pair of headphones…

1. Style

There are three main headphone styles that you can buy, and they all have various pros and cons. The style you choose has a lot to do with personal preference and use. These three main styles are:

  • In-ear:

These are your typical earbud-style headphones, probably the most popular due to cost efficiency. Earbuds are also the most portable style, since they’re so small. You can easily wrap up earbuds and throw them in a bag for your daily commute, for exercise, or for any other day-to-day use.

The cons? Earbuds typically don’t have as great sound quality as over-ear or on-ear headphones. They also don’t cancel noise as well since they don’t cover your whole ear. Although, Apple is rumoured to be working on noise-cancelling AirPods… we’re curious to see how well these will work!

  • Over-ear:

Over-ear headphones cover your entire ear, and are known for having the best sound quality. This is because of their large surface size. They also have the best noise-cancelling capabilities, since they cover your entire ear. You can have a truly immersive experience with over-ear headphones. Great for travel or for working in noisy environments. And if you’re a gamer, you’ll probably want to invest in the over-ear style so you can immerse yourself in the game.

The cons? Over-ear headphones are big and more difficult to carry around day-to-day. This could limit how often you use them. They are also generally more expensive than the other styles. For a good pair, you’re probably looking at spending a few hundred dollars, minimum.

  • On-ear:

On-ear headphones sit on top of your ear, so they’re larger than earbuds but smaller than over-ear styles. This style is very middle ground in many ways. On-ear are generally more compact than over-ear headphones, so easier to travel with. They also give you a better sound quality than earbuds, but don’t completely block you from the outside world – some people like this and some people don’t.

The cons? If you’re looking for noise-cancelling, these probably aren’t your best option. Over-ear headphones will almost always have better noise-cancelling capabilities. On-ear can also be uncomfortable, since they’re pressing against your ears.

2. Wired vs. Wireless

Just like with headphone style, wired vs. wireless headphones has a lot to do with personal preference and what you’re used to. Here are some pros and cons for both styles:

  • Wired:

With more and more devices losing the headphone jacks, a lot of people feel forced to choose wireless headphones. But, there are still pros to wired, as well as tricks to continue using them. Wired headphones typically have the best sound quality, because they’re directly connected to the device. And, you can still use them on a jack-less device with a headphone dongle or with Lightning/USB-C connected headphones.

The cons? Wires can get in the way, especially if you’re exercising with them. They also tangle easily, which can be problematic if you’re throwing them in a bag everyday. And, as much as Lightning/USB-C headphones are an option, the market for them is small so you don’t have a lot of good options.

  • Wireless:

As much as audiophiles and headphone enthusiasts are pushing wired, the mass market will likely continue transitioning to wireless. So, in the near future, you’re going to have more variety if you’re looking to buy wireless headphones. They’re also great because you don’t have to worry about tangled, inconvenient wires.

The cons? You have to charge your wireless headphones, which can be a nuisance… especially if you forget or don’t have your charger on hand. Their sound quality (for now) also isn’t quite as good as wired. Although, this may change as tech companies invest more in their wireless headphones.

3. Smart Assistant Feature

This may or may not be a surprise, but you can now get headphones that trigger your device’s smart assistant without you interacting with your device.

For example, if you double tap your AirPods, the gesture triggers Siri. Then you can ask her to turn up or down the volume or skip, pause or play a track. It’s rumoured that Apple is working on having Siri always on in the next generation AirPods. This means you can give her commands anytime, even if your hands are full simply by saying “Hey Siri”.

Google’s Pixel Buds have similar capabilities with Google Assistant. As voice commands become more popular, it will probably become hard to find headphones without this feature. But for now, it’s just a consideration if easy access to your smart assistant is important to you.

Brand-Specific to Your Device

There are lots of headphone brands out there, at differing price ranges and capabilities. Because of this, you don’t need to stick with Apple EarPods if you have an iPhone, or with Pixel Buds if you have a Pixel.

But,

there are definitely benefits to using the headphones created by your device’s brand read more

4 Reasons Not to Replace Your Laptop with an iPad Pro… Yet.

iPad pro 11"
The new 11″ iPad Pro is considered powerful enough to replace your laptop.

With the new, powerful iPad Pro released this fall, there is lots of debate around whether or not it’s enough to use as a laptop replacement.

From what we can tell, it’s very possible, but not necessarily a seamless transition. This all depends on what you use your laptop for, but our recommendation is to wait while Apple sorts out a few things first.

Keep reading to see our top 4 reasons not to replace your laptop with the iPad Pro… yet!

  • Weak File Management

The weak file management system on the iPad Pro is one of the main reasons it is hard to adjust to an iPad as your laptop replacement. Apparently, you need a completely open mind in order to adjust to file management on the iPad Pro.

On a Macbook, you can easily access all your files through the Finder app in your dock. And, when you plug in a hard drive, a Macbook will bring up the hard drive in the Finder app automatically. That way you can easily view and transfer the files onto your laptop.

Currently on the iPad Pro, you can connect a hard drive (but only wirelessly), but the Files app won’t pop up and let you view your files. You actually have to view your files through the hard drive manufacturer’s third party app. So all of your files can’t actually live in one place. They’re spread across apps.

Another downfall of the iPad’s file management system is the inability to zip and unzip folders. Yes, you can preview the zip folder’s contents, but you can’t do anything with it. So if someone sends you a zipped folder, there’s not much you can do with it.

  • Lack of Pro 3rd Party Software

At the moment, a lot of programs are only available as an incomplete, mobile version on the iPad Pro. For example, you can’t access all the features on Photoshop for the iPad that you can on the desktop version. Photoshop is set to launch a full version of its software in 2019, but it is not available…yet.

This is true for a variety of programs. Apple’s own popular video editing software, Final Cut Pro, is not yet available on the iPad. There are some 3rd party alternatives being developed but none are as feature-rich.

The lack of Pro software that exists for the iPad is a definite reason to wait before replacing your laptop with the iPad Pro.

  • No Split View for Same App

While you can use split view to see two Safari tabs at once, you can’t view most other apps twice in split view yet. This means you can’t open the same application side-by-side in two windows. You can only use the multitasking feature for two different applications.

In our opinion, this is the most unfortunate for emails, messaging, notes read more

Upcoming Smartphone Trends You Should Know

Apple iPhone
The iPhone XS Max, Apple’s newest smartphone

It seems like smartphones are evolving more quickly and drastically year-over-year. To see what you can expect over the next few years, read our list of imminent smart trends, both for hardware and software!

Hardware Trends

There are some weird and exciting trends in smartphone hardware that we can look forward to… some even feel like a throwback to the early days of cellphones. Keep reading to learn more:

  • 5G Phones

The new pinnacle of wireless data and connectivity. Modem companies such as Qualcomm and Intel are already working to create new modems for our smartphones capable of the new and improved 5G standard.

What does this mean for us, the smartphone users? Faster data speeds, and more reliable connectivity. How can we not be excited for that? The more speed the better.

5G smartphones will become more widely available in 2019 – 2020.

  • Triple (or More) Cameras

There are two schools of thought currently when it comes to smartphone photography…

Google thinks it can do all it needs with one single lens, and so far it seems to be right; however, other companies like apple, Huawei and Samsung are going the route of multiple lenses on the back of the phone.

Multiple lenses allow for different options like crisper zoom photos and better portrait mode read more