Tech

The NEW iPHONE 11 PRO. Hurry!

DETAILS: iPhone 11 Pro Starting at $999 All-new triple-camera system (Ultra Wide, Wide, Telephoto), Up to 20 hours of video playback, Water resistant to a depth of 4 meters for up to 30 minutes, 6 5.8” or 6.5” Super Retina XDR display.

What the New iPhone Means for Your Dismal Food Photos

The iPhone 11 camera will mean a vast improvement in quality for Instagram food photosby Jenny G. Zhang@jennygzhang  Sep 10, 2019, 6:19pm EDT

You can always tell when a photo of food was taken in a dimly lit restaurant. Either it’s dark and barely visible or there’s the telltale glare of a flash, imbuing the shot with an unappetizing garishness. Or a third possibility where the image has been processed to hell and back, its exposure pushed up so much that everything turns grainy, as if it was handiwork out of a beginner’s dark room instead of the product of a thousand-dollar technological marvel.

Today at its annual iPhone event, Apple unveiled its own night mode on the new line of iPhone 11 models, which means we can pretty much predict the end of shitty nighttime restaurant photos from food grammers on your feed (if a feature is new to the iPhone, that means it’s essentially new to virtually all Insta influencers). There will be no more excuses for grain, flash, or other unflattering ways to compensate for low-light situations. This could even fundamentally impact some restaurants’ marketing and business, as dimly lit eateries that were previously rarely photographed may now be discovered more on social media feeds thanks to photos in which food is clearly visible.

photo: The Verge

Another real-world impact may be on the actual behavior of food influencers in restaurants. Expect to see fewer awkward physical maneuvers to get the classic top-down overhead shot of a meal, thanks to the iPhone 11 Pro’s new, hideous, three-lens design that includes a wide camera and an ultra-wide camera. While professional food ‘grammers tend to focus on tight shots of a single dish, according to Eater’s senior social media manager Adam Moussa — who runs Eater’s Instagram account and has to scroll through hundreds of food snapshots a day — the bird’s-eye view of a bountiful spread is still a staple of food photography, one that usually involves standing up or even clambering onto a chair to capture the entire surface of the table in a single frame. That behavior has become commonplace in the Instagram era, but let’s be honest, it’s still a bit obnoxious, especially in the eyes of some restaurant owners and staff.

The iPhone fundamentally changed the camera industry and the medium itself, transforming anyone with a smartphone in their pocket into a photographer, a videographer, a documentarian of everyday life and historical events in the making. It sounds frivolous, but each new iteration impacts the photography we see on our feeds, and by extension, how we view the world. Judging by these features, the world of food we observe on our phones is going to be a little better lit, and more easily wider, going forward.

The Best Wireless Earbuds for Travel (and Everything Else)

by SEBASTIAN MODAK and ELAHEH NOZARI July 10, 2019 | Conde Nast

While wireless earbuds have been around for a while, the AirPods ushered in a new generation of truewireless earbuds when they made their debut at the end of 2016. So began a Bluetooth-dominated future, where earbuds aren’t physically connected to your device or to each other. For travel, going wireless can be liberating—no more wire tangles clogging up your backpack and no more slack cord dipping in your in-flight meal by mistake. And for some, over-ear wireless headphones are too bulky to stow away in an already packed carry-on bag. Here are the top true wireless earbuds for travel and otherwise, ranked from best (and most expensive) to still-great and budget-friendly. (Note: We don’t think sorta-wireless earbuds—the ones with a wire connecting them to each other—are worth it when there are so many great options available now, so we’ve limited this selection to true wireless earbuds.)

Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless Earbuds

For those who follow the evolution of earphone brands closely, it would have been pretty obvious that the German perfectionists at Sennheiser were probably not messing around when they released the Momentum True Wireless Earbuds in November 2018. These earbuds prove that size does not indeed matter, to the point that at times it’s easy to forget you’re dealing with two tiny capsules that could easily be lost in the wash and not some oversized headphones. The sound and passive noise isolation of these wireless earbuds are superb, with thumping bass and non-grating treble. An elegant, pocketable, USB-C charging case that doesn’t look like it’s holding your meds (hi, AirPods) is the cherry on top.

Battery life: Four hours, plus an additional eight out of the charging case.

Hits: Basically everything—seriously, these are the best wireless earbuds around.

Misses: A $300 price tag, less than a Benjamin short of some of the highest end over-ear headphones, will be tough to swallow for most; the controls, a complicated network of taps on the completely buttonless earbuds, can take some getting used to.

Apple AirPods

You can say what you want about Apple—that it doesn’t innovate quite like it used to, or that it’s the company that got us into this wireless mess with its nixing of the headphone jack in the first place—but it really hit the mark with the AirPods and set a new standard for how Bluetooth earphones should work. Granted, the AirPods are designed for iPhone and Mac users, so if you’re of a different persuasion, there are better options for you above and below. But if used to their fullest, the AirPods can be remarkable, which makes them our runner-up for the best wireless earbuds. The seamlessness of the connection, established as soon as you pull them out of their carrying case; the surprisingly better-than-decent sound quality, despite lacking the existence of eartips for cushioning; and some handy features, like automatic pausing when you pull one earbud out, all add up to a pretty nifty listening experience.

Battery life: Five hours, plus an additional 20 from the charging case.

Hits: Seamless Bluetooth connection; probably the best battery life in its class.

Misses: One size does not fit all: If you’ve had trouble keeping the AirPods’ predecessors, the wired EarPods, in your ears, you’ll have trouble with these, too (also, no matter how much you tell yourself the little cylindrical extensions to the AirPods look cool, they don’t).

Jabra Elite 65T True Wireless Earbuds

If you prioritize sound quality for music above all else—and you’re looking for an AirPods alternative—the Jabra Elite 65T are the best wireless earbuds at at a more affordable price point than the Sennheiser. They carry an impressive dynamic range, and three different choices for silicone tips means you can find your perfect fit that will also offer very good noise isolation. The connection strength, powered by Bluetooth 5, is ironclad, so you won’t experience dropped audio unless your phone is running on an earlier Bluetooth system. If you exercise a lot, consider getting the Jabra Elite Active 65T, which are nearly identical to the standard Elites but are sweat-resistant (and $20 more expensive).

Battery life: Five hours, plus an additional ten out of the charging case.

Hits: Great sound; easy-to-use controls; strong Bluetooth connection.

Misses: Not the best for phone call audio quality, especially if you’re on a busy city street.

Bose SoundSport Free True Wireless Earbuds

Hoping for a vacation jog, but still want to keep up with the latest episode of The Daily? Here’s your answer. The Bose SoundSport earbuds are built for those on-the-go—who also want to stay aware of their surroundings. That means you aren’t getting any noise isolation, but it also means you won’t get hit by that bus because you are so lost in the sweet, sweet hooks of Carly Rae Jepsen. (The Jabra Elite Active, in contrast, are quite noise-cancelling.) These earbuds also water-resistant, so they’ll withstand your own sweat as well as an unexpected rain shower. Most importantly, though, is the sound: Granted you’re not in too noisy an environment like, say, an airplane cabin, these really do sound great with a good blend of highs, mids, and lows.

Battery life: Five hours, plus an additional ten out of the charging case.

Hits: Great sound; an array of features that make them perfect for a workout.

Misses: Basically nonexistent noise isolation; the way they stick out of your ears can look a little silly.

Soundcore Anker Liberty Air True Wireless Earphones

If you’re looking to spend under $100 on wireless earbuds, the Soundcore Anker Liberty Air are your best bet. They’re similar to the Apple AirPods in that they have a long cylindrical stem that sticks out of your ears, and they’re remarkably comfortable. They have silicone tips that seal off your ear canals so they are technically noise-isolating, but the effectiveness really depends on how well the included ear tips fit you (there are small, medium, and large options). They’ll definitely stay in place if you’re, say, sitting at the airport, but if you’re taking these on a long run or for a jaunt around the gym, they won’t be as snug as the Jabra Elite Actives. They will, however, be more secure in your ears than the AirPods, which have a reputation for falling out. They have a strong Bluetooth 5.0 connection and they easily pair to your device.

Battery life: Five hours, plus an additional 15 from the charging case.

Hits: Solid noise-isolation system and comfortable fit.

Misses: They are cheaper than most of the wireless earbuds on this list, which means they (and their charging case) also look and feel cheaper.

MacBook Pro 2019

The new MacBook Pro – So What’s New?

In a nutshell, it does 0-60 in a nano second – it’s lightening fast, it has a longer battery life and the keyboard problems of the past have been addressed. Here’s the skinny…

The new MacBook Pro models use the latest Intel processors, introducing an 8-core option for the 15-inch MacBook Pro for the first time. While the 15-inch models use 6 or 8-core 9th-generation chips, the 13-inch MacBook Pro is equipped with a quad-core 8th-generation chip. While Apple claims these chips are two times faster than pervious models, having actually used mine this past weekend, I have been astonished with the speed. General Specs include:

  • 13- and 15-inch sizes

  • True Tone display and Touch Bar

  • Up to 4 TB SSD on 15″, up to 2 TB on 13″

  • 8th-Gen and 9th-Gen “Coffee Lake Refresh” chips: Up to 8-core on 15″, up to 4-core on 13″

  • T2 chip for enhanced security and “Hey Siri” support

  • More durable butterfly keyboard

Why I bought it?

I needed an upgrade to my MacBook (12″, 1.2GHz processor) and rather than waiting for the “soon-to-be” upgrade to the MacBook, I went all out with the bells and whistles (surprise) and chose the just released 13″ MacBook Pro with the touch bar, 8GB RAM, 2.4GHz Quad-Core Processor and 512GB of storage. Why? The MacBook Pro is so fast and responsive, the re-designed keyboard is magical and all in, it wasn’t a big enough price difference to warrant buying a much slower, albeit one-pound lighter, MacBook (top of the line price $1599.00). At $1,999.00 the MacBook Pro (still a lot of dough), but to my mind, well worth it given my laptop needs (and lack of patience) and as I mentioned at 3.02 pounds, and only weighing a pound more than my previous MacBook, it was an easy decision. BTW – An entry level MacBook Pro, which is still ridiculously fast, is $1299.00, which when considering that an entry level MacBook is the same price, doesn’t seem right (unless the 1-pound difference in weight is a factor). BOTTOM LINE: If you are in the market for a new laptop, I think you owe it to yourself to give the new 2019 MacBook Pro a spin.