Internet and Web

Your internet connection, web sites and services.

NEST Goes all Google ... rebrands

Google Nest Hub

Episode 1591

NEST has officially become Google NEST, and will solely become a Google Product. Leo says that while Google has owned NEST for a while now, it had kept it largely autonomous, including the data it collected. No longer. No Google owns all the data it collects and will use it. Even worse, Leo says that Google is already phasing out support for other IoT devices and will solely be supported by Google Assistant.  Leo says it's annoying when a company encourages you to deep dive into a product's ecosystem and then changes it so that it can't be used with other products.

Do I Have to Pay TuneIn to Listen to Podcasts?

Episode 1590

Taylor from Cincinnati, OH

Taylor operates his own 100 watt FM radio station so they can stream via TuneIn. He's had complaints that TuneIn is charging them $100 for premium service in order to listen to him. Is that legit? Leo says NO! They do have free and paid levels for streaming, but he can listen to anything free on Tune-in. They do give a one-week free trial, but TuneIn is billing automatically via Apple Pay. Leo says to complain, and they will refund it. 

Should I Buy a 4K TV?

Bluray

Episode 1590

Jeff from Wisconsin

Jeff has a 10-year-old HD TV and he's thinking of upgrading to 4K. A TCL 65" with Roku built in. A good buy? Leo says he'll likely need a decoder box to work with the cable subscription. But will he get 4K? Well, that depends on his cable. And even then, no live channels really broadcast in 4K anyway.  He can stream it through Netflix and others, but it requires a faster internet connection. One thing he can do is get a 4K Bluray player. 

Johnny Jet .... Delayed

Johnny Jet

Episode 1590

Johnny Jet was supposed to fly out today, but his flight was delayed. Fortunately, I had alerts from his airline, and TripIt Pro in order to get notified. He was also able to rebook through Dallas in Business Class for almost the cost of coach. He used miles, though. Johnny also recommends renting your car through Costco Travel. The prices will drop as you get closer to your travel date, and you can always cancel and rebook. But stay away from the prepay guarantee. That locks your rate in. 

Microsoft Lauds the Cloud at Event, Barely Mentions Windows

Microsoft

Episode 1590

Focusing mostly on their Cloud applications, Microsoft didn't even mention Windows at their latest event. Leo says that Microsoft has acknowledged that the Internet has become operating system agnostic, and as such, it really doesn't matter what OS you use. So Microsoft focused on their Cloud services like Azure. Could the end of Windows be near?

How can I recover my Gmail account?

Gmail

Episode 1589

John Paul from Carlsbad, CA

John Paul is having a hard time recovering his Gmail account. What can he do? Leo says it's very difficult to recover your Gmail because there's really no one to talk to. Gmail is a free service and doesn't offer support. If you had the paid version, GSuite, you'd have support. But since this is free, you're really at the mercy of the support documents. One way to prevent this is to turn on 2-factor authentication. That way you get a text message with a code that you input, or you use an authenticator.

Sam Abuelsamid .... Electric Audi

Sam

Episode 1589

Sam is going to be driving Audi's first electric vehicle this week. Sam is also looking at Amazon's secure delivery service, which is being tested. Through a special lock, Amazon delivery will be able to deliver your packages when no one is home, by placing the package in the garage or into a locked car. Amazon will send a signal, that can open the garage or car door, and then drop off the package, locking it automatically behind them. Leo says that the next thing will be drone delivery, where it'll just drop the package into your yard.