Apps

Can I Sideload Peacock on Amazon Fire TV Device?

Peacock

Episode 1723

Ron from California

Ron can't watch Peacock on any device that he has, but he's heard he can "sideload" it onto his Amazon Firestick. Is that legal and safe? Leo says yes. It's perfectly fine, but there can be risky security-wise. Android, which Amazon's FireTV is based on, has a setting that he has to enable to allow downloads from something other than the Amazon app store or Google Play. Once he has enabled that, he can install it no problem. Just keep it up to date and don't get it from anyone other than the original developer. APK Mirror is the exception. It's generally safe to download from there. 

Leo Uses TikTok

TikTok

Episode 1716

Leo downloaded and installed TikTok today, to get the experience before the US bans it. Is he worried about his data getting grabbed by the PRC? Not at all. Leo says it's the most creative and fun app going right now. TikTok has been trying to avoid the ban by having a US CEO, hired over 10,000 US jobs, and even courting Microsoft to buy their US operations. But the White House seems in earnest to ban it. 

Is there an app that can define achronyms and abbreviations?

iOS Look Up

Episode 1714

Dan from San Diego, CA

Dan would like an app that will translate acronyms and abbreviations into real words. Leo says there isn't one he knows of, but it's a great idea. The Kindle has something similar though. By pressing and holding, it will open up a dictionary to define it. The Mac also has that feature CMD-Shift-D. But phones are harder because they isolate, or sandbox, each app for security reasons -especially iOS devices. You could look for a browser extension that could do it.

Bug in iOS 14 Notifies Others of What's In Your Clipboard

tiktok

There's a bug in iOS14 that notifies everyone in your contact list what is in your clipboard. 56 apps are getting the data from your iOS clipboard and then passing it along to others. Leo says it's a common tool in app development to access the clipboard, but the bug is making it sharable. 

Meanwhile, LinkedIn is getting sued for sharing the contents of the clipboard as a violation of California's new privacy law. Linked in claims it was all done unintentionally, and Leo believes that's the case.

 

How can I take a 360 degree image of something?

Sony A7

Episode 1706

JP from Orange County, CA

JP is looking for a good photographer's 360 turntable. Essentially, it's a lazy susan for photographers. Leo says that there's software now that largely lets you do this with just your iPhone. The app is called Bellus 3D and it does a very credible 3D render of your object. 

What's a good mirrorless camera for JP to move away from his Canon DSLR? Leo says he loves the Sony A7, but since JP has all that Canon glass (lenses) that he's invested in, the Canon R series is probably the best way to go. 

Did I download a virus from an app?

Amazon Kindle Fire

Episode 1702

RIchard from Windsor, CA

Richard put Facebook Messenger onto his wife's Kindle tablet. Since then, he's had nothing but trouble with his network. He didn't get it from the Kindle store, so he's worried he's been hacked. Leo says that Richard probably was since he googled and clicked on the first link he found. Leo says that's why its important to go to the official source like the Kindle app store. If bad guys can steer you to a website, they can infect you. But it may not be the Kindle that's been infected. It could be the router or modem. But Leo says it's not likely.

Google and Apple Develop Tracking App to Battle Covid19

Apple

Episode 1686

By tracking your movement, and everyone you encounter, Google and Apple have developed an app that will notify everyone and public health authorities if you get sick. All you need to do is press a button that you are feeling sick, and the app does the rest. But your privacy is promised to be protected. The challenge, though, is to get everyone to opt-in and download it.