On the eve of Apple's iPhone 6S announcement, Leo says that 77% of US users have smartphones and the majority of internet use as a result is done with them. Leo also says that translates worldwide as mobile phones are the number one way to use the Internet as well. Leo says that this is largely due to the flood of cheap Android phones out there, like the Motorola Moto C.
Google announced a new router called OnHub, but it's not cheap at $200. It has 13 antennas in it to guard against congestion. It looks at each of 11 bands periodically and switches to the best, uncongested band for best performance. It also has "Quality of Service" so users can prioritize web traffic. And you can control it via your Android or iOS device. It runs on 220.127.116.11 and Leo has a hunch it's for home automation.
Find out more at on.google.com/hub.
If you have keyless entry, you're close enough to your Volkswagen, someone could break into your car by using an $18 device to amplify the signal of the key fob. If you also have a keyless ignition, they could easily steal the car as well. There is a fix for it -- a small wire mesh bag that acts as a Faraday cage. But Volkswagon has known for two years that all Volkswagen and Audi cars can easily be hacked and open the car door. And the problem is, it requires a hardware repair to fix it.
Citing the release of the Apple Watch, US Watch sales have been reportedly declining in the last seven years. Leo says it's silly to blame Apple for the sales downturn, and it's likely that saturation with customers is blamed. Even Apple admits that the high priced Apple Watch hasn't done as well as they had hoped. Most people have a smartphone and that took the place of a wrist watch for most people long before the Apple Watch came on the scene.
This week, Wall Street punished cable companies in trading as news came out that so called cable cutting or cord cutting, is accelerating faster than anyone expected. On top of that, investors and Cable companies are learning that the next generation of viewers aren't watching TV at all. They're watching YouTube. And that's got cable companies and TV broadcasters mighty nervous. But ISPs are jacking up the price of internet to the point where cord cutters aren't saving anything to cut the cable, especially when you add additional services like Netflix, HBO Now and others.
Following T-Mobile's lead, Verizon has dropped mandatory contracts and will no longer subsidize phones. So, users will either have to buy their phones at full price, or they can pay it out over two years. But you will no longer be able to buy a phone for $199. Leo says that while customers will experience sticker shock when they go to upgrade their phones, in the long run, it'll be cheaper, and they'll save about $30 a month.
Scott joins us with the news that Sharp is selling their TV arm to HiSense, and is getting out of the TV business for good. Scott hasn't been much of a fan of Sharp TVs, and they only enjoyed about 3% of the market share. So it's not surprising that they're getting out. It's ironic, because Sharp invented LCD technology and will likely keep making the LCD screens for others.
On July 29th, Microsoft launched Windows 10 (Threshold) and so far, Leo likes it, a lot. However, Leo says users shouldn't be in a rush to upgrade because it was launched early, and there will be another more polished version coming out in the Fall. So if you're not in a rush to upgrade, don't. Added features include a replacement for Internet Explorer called "Edge," and it's not really ready for prime time just yet, as some plugins like Last Pass don't work. So Microsoft also added Internet Explorer to continue to use. Ugh. Edge though, will be more done in the fall.