This $2 App Brings Amazon Alexa to Your Apple Watch...Sort Of

· Jim Tanous · Cool Stuff Found

An Apple Watch app called Voice in a Can is seeking to satisfy the desires of those who love Apple hardware but rely on Amazon Alexa for its home automation capabilities. As a standalone app, Voice in a Can runs entirely on the Apple Watch without needing to pair with the iPhone. With just a Wi-Fi or LTE connection you ask Alexa to control your home lights, unlock the door, or set your thermostat. However, since Apple prevents third party apps from replacing Siri, you can’t use Voice in a Can to have Alexa make calls or control the audio playback on your watch. It’s by no means a perfect solution, but it’s the best Alexa users have thus far until Amazon and Apple work out an official solution. Grab it now on the App Store for $1.99.

This $2 App Brings Amazon Alexa to Your Apple Watch…Sort Of

Sync Your Hue Smart Lights with Videos, Music, and Games with the Philips Hue Sync App for the Mac

· Jeff Gamet · Cool Stuff Found

Signify released its Philips Hue Sync app for Mac and Windows on Thursday, giving Philips Hue smart light users a new way to control their lighting experience. The app uses Hue bulbs to add lighting and color effects in real time to music, videos, and games playing on your computer. It also works with televisions if you use AirPlay or connect via HDMI, which is great if your computer and TV aren’t in the same room. The Philips Hue Sync app is free and available for download at the Philips Hue website.

Philips Hue Smart Light App Gets New Interface, More

· Jeff Gamet · Cool Stuff Found

Philips Hue smart light users got a nice surprise Tuesday morning with a big update to the Hue controller app for the iPhone. Hue 3.0 sports a new interface that’s easier to use, controls for individual lights instead of just groups, an improved color picker, new scenes, the ability to use the art in a room to create light scenes, and more. The Hue 3.0 app is a free download at Apple’s App Store.

The Charm of the Chime – Mac Geek Gab 709

· John F. Braun & Dave Hamilton · Mac Geek Gab Podcast

You have questions, Dave and John have answers. Today’s topics include malfunctioning AirPods, setting Apple Pay addresses, restoring a Recovery Partition, email and iMessage encryption, and much, much more. Download, press play, enjoy, and learn!

The Voice Assistant War: Alexa and Google Assistant Versus Siri

· Jeff Gamet · Analysis

Apple HomePod, Amazon Echo, Google Home smart speakers

We’re still in the early stages of voice assistant technology so we can’t declare a winner yet, regardless of which you prefer. Based on what we’re seeing, however, Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant are putting Apple’s Siri in a serious catch up position.

Migrating Your Data, Home Automation, and macOS 10.13.4 – Mac Geek Gab 703

· John F. Braun & Dave Hamilton · Mac Geek Gab Podcast

Mac Geek Gab Logo

Apple released macOS 10.13.4 this week and, well, it changes some things. No worries, your two favorite geeks talk through it all. Then it’s on to managing duplicate contacts and properly migrating your data. There are other questions, too, as well as a few other Quick Tips and some Cool Stuff(s) Found. Press play and enjoy!

TMO Background Mode Encore Interview with Tidbits Managing Editor Josh Centers

· John Martellaro · Background Mode Podcast

Josh Centers

Josh Centers is the Managing Editor of Tidbits.com and has published several Take Control Books. His latest book is “Take Control of Apple Home Automation.” And so, I invited him to make a return appearance on Background Mode to chat about that very subject. The book is a complete guide and starts from the very beginning of the design and wiring process and the use of various hubs. Josh clearly explained how to use Apple’s HomeKit home automation platform to control smart devices in the home, such as lights, outlets, thermostats, and more. And he’s very frank about various myths surrounding home automation. We also chatted about beginner security concerns as well as the ability to maintain control and terminate any service if necessary. If you have an interest in home automation, this show is must listening.

Apple's Chinese iCloud Occupation, HomeKit Miss, Apple Parenting, Oak Island - Pop.0 ep.28

· Bryan Chaffin · Cool Stuff Found

In this TMO video podcast, Bryan Chaffin and John Kheit look at Apple’s Chinese iCloud occupation and what it says about Apple. They also think Apple is just plain missing the smarthome boat, judging by what we’re seeing at CES. John goes off on a tangent rant about parenting and Apple, and for the pop portion of the show, they talk about recent developments in The Curse of Oak Island. (WARNING NSFW: PROFANITY & RANTS)