Hardware

Laptop or desktop computers and any components within.

Will Chromebooks continue to be updated?

ASUS Chromebook

Episode 1680

Mike from St. Cloud, MN

Mike wants to get his parents a new Chromebook, but he's concerned that Google won't update them after a few years. Leo says that Google says that they will update them up to five years. But one, Chromebooks are extremely secure by design, so even after its end of life, you still can use it online and two, Chromebooks are cheap to replace. Worst case, you may run into issues visiting some websites. Check out about Chromebook's end of life and Auto Update policy here.

Sam Abuelsamid and the Cognitive Load

Sam Abuelsamid

Episode 1680

Sam joins Leo to talk about a study by IAmRoadsmart, which studied the use of touch screens in modern cars. They wanted to see driver reaction times using smartphone projection systems like Apple Carplay and Android Auto. The study found that drivers' reaction time was greatly diminished, even while using voice commands. In fact, the cognitive load produced a reaction time was worse than driving drunk or while high. 12-21% vs. 27-53% for Android Auto/Carplay. The evidence is clear that using a touchscreen in your car has significantly more dangerous than driving under the influence.

New Apple Devices Announced, While Stores Closed

2020 MacBook Air

Episode 1680

This week, Apple announced the new MacBook Air and iPad Pro. But while Apple has new devices for users to buy, all Apple Stores are closed, except in China. But Leo says that people really don't need to try the latest devices, they know what they're all about. The new MacBook Air is the first refresh of the laptop in a few years, and it's very thin and light. The new iPad Pro has a 50-80% speed increase with a faster processor. The camera has two lenses: wide and ultra-wide.

The Giz Wiz ... Spectacled

Dick

Episode 1679

If you're practicing social distancing and just watching TV in bed, check out prism spectacles, which are sometimes referred to a bed-glasses and Evelots.Prism spectacles allow users to read text or watch television from a lying down position. They're a big help because you don't have to crane or bend your neck in awkward positions. Lay completely flat in bed with a book propped up in your lap or view television on a wall or table. These lay flat bed reading glasses are also a big help for limited mobility or bed-ridden patients.

Which Laptop Should I Buy My Wife?

MacBook Air

Episode 1679

Gary from Woodland Hills, CA

Gary's wife is a teacher working at home and he wants to know what to get to make her job easier. First off, Leo says to get a more comfortable chair for her. He also needs a computer for her. Leo says a laptop would be good and Apple's new MacBook Air is about as close to the ideal laptop as you can get. Great screen. Faster. Yet light. And since Gary's wife uses a Mac at school, the MacBook Air is perfect. And she could get an educational discount. The only negative on the MacAir is that it doesn't have any ports other than a single USB-C connector.

Apple Announces MacBook Air and iPad Pros

MacBook Air

Episode 1679

Apple announced a new iPad Pro and MacBook Air this week. And Leo says that the iPad Pro costs as much, or more, than a fully equipped MacBook Air. Also, there isn't much difference between the previous iPad Pro and the new model, so Leo isn't sure it's worth upgrading to, and if you're looking at it for a new purchase, the MacBook Air will have more workable apps, vs. the tablet based iOS apps. 

Why is my thinkpad screen so dim?

Lenovo ThinkPad X1

Episode 1678

Gary from Scottsdale, AZ

Gary uses a Lenovo Thinkpad and the latest 7th generation laptop doesn't seem as bright as an older 6th gen model. Is that normal? Does going 4K sacrifice brightness or is something wrong? Leo says that due to battery life, laptops never go to full brightness by default. You can look in the BIOS settings for brightness and see if it's set lower. Leo found his set at half. Press F12 on boot to access. Also check the Thinkpad SubReddit. That's a good place to ask.

Can I watch over the air TV on my Chromebook?

Chromebook

Episode 1678

Jeff from Nashville, TN

Jeff wants to know if a Chromebook can be used to watch TV. Leo says you can, but you need internet access to do it via streaming. Can he connect an antenna and watch? Leo says no. That doesn't work. A Chromebook needs internet access to work, and it doesn't have a tuner. So to add all that will cost a lot. But with decent internet access, you can then subscribe to YouTubeTV and enjoy it. You're better off going over to tvfool.com, RadioLabs.com, or AntennaWeb.org and finding an antenna for your TV. It'll even show you which way to point it.