Category: What’s Your Tech

Tech For Outside The Home This Summer

Tech For Outside The Home This Summer

By: Christine Persaud

June 14, 2019

Last summer, in a multi-part series on smart home tech, I covered tech you could get for the backyard. Here, I’ll discuss more tech items, both smart and not, that can enhance the exterior of your home, simplify tedious tasks, and potentially help you save money in the process.

Philips Hue Outdoor Lights

As of last summer, Philips extended its popular Hue lighting products to the outdoors. This allows you to add coloured lights for your front porch or back deck, or even around the perimeter of the home. All of the lights, which are dimmable, can be controlled using the app. You can turn them on or off remotely, put them on a schedule, or adjust the lighting to reflect the mood – whether it’s bright red for an evening dance party, or cool white for a late night relaxing cocoa on the porch swing. A three-pack base kit is $350, providing up to 16 million colours, and additional lights are ..

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Sit Back and Relax With Tech for the Beach

Sit Back and Relax With Tech for the Beach

By: Christine Persaud

June 12, 2019

Now that the summer is fast approaching, it’s time to think about enjoying some fun in the sun. And for many of us, that often means spending a day at the beach.

You can maximize your beach visit with a few cool tech items.

JBL Flip 4 Waterproof Bluetooth Wireless Speaker

Unless you’re at an all-inclusive resort, chances are there isn’t music playing. You can create your own little musical oasis with a portable Bluetooth speaker. The JBL Flip 4 is fully waterproof, which means you don’t have to worry if it gets wet. And you can simply rinse the sand off it once you get back home. It’s also ultra-rugged so it can withstand getting knocked around. You can connect up to two devices to it at once, so one person can switch to his playlist once the other dozes off, or you can take turns playing DJ. It lasts for up to 12 hours, which is more than enough for a day’s beach session. It’s ab..

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High-Tech Gifts for Dad This Father’s Day

High-Tech Gifts for Dad This Father’s Day

By: Christine Persaud

June 10, 2019

Father’s Day is just around the corner on Sunday, June 16, which means it’s time to start thinking about getting the dad on your list a great gift. And there’s plenty of tech from which to choose that any dad would appreciate on his special day.

Here are some great high-tech gift ideas for dad.

Dad can wear this smartwatch to track his fitness or just daily activity levels, work towards achieving goals, track heart rate, and more. The five-button design makes it easy to operate even with gloves on – perfect for the cold Canadian winters or while skiing – and the display is easy to read even in direct sunlight. It includes GPS and smart notifications as well, along with safety features that let dad share his location in case he needs help. This is great both for the adventurous dad as well as the elderly dad who can use it in case of emergencies if he can’t get to a phone. For dads w..

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Technology and Business Travel

Technology and Business Travel

By: Yasmin Ranade

June 7, 2019

Technology is playing a big part in eliminating inefficiencies in business travel, as well as empowering the businessperson who travels for work. How has technology disrupted business travel and business travel services? What are business travelers looking for and prioritizing these days? I asked David Thompson, Chief Information Technology Officer at American Express Global Business Travel (GBT) to share his insights on how technology is improving the travel experience for business people.

David Thompson, Chief Information Technology Officer at American Express Global Business Travel (GBT)

“Business travelers historically have been serviced as a homogenous group; without any defining or unique traits,” began Thompson. “Today, in Canada and globally, the modern business traveller is expecting to be treated like a complete individual, as they are everywhere else in their lives.”

“Simultaneously, sh..

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Reviewing the OnePlus 7 Pro

Reviewing the OnePlus 7 Pro

By: Ted Kritsonis

June 4, 2019

OnePlus has always branded itself as an upstart wary of charging the premium prices established brands haven’t shied away from, but the new 7 Pro enters that arena.

The Chinese company usually launches two phones per year — a flagship in the spring, followed by an iterative upgrade in the fall. That latter phone last year was the OnePlus 6T, a device that brought in an onscreen fingerprint sensor, a Nightscape low-light camera shooting mode and a larger 6.41-inch display.

If you’re reading this having never heard of OnePlus, the short of it is that the company initially started out using an invitation-based system years ago that kept it somewhat exclusive, while reducing company costs, since sales were direct. There was no retail or carrier presence at the time, but that’s now changed.

What’s also different this time around is that OnePlus has entered premium territory, going up against the likes of App..

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Dedicated Devices Promise Personal Information Privacy — at a Price

Dedicated Devices Promise Personal Information Privacy — at a Price

By: Lee Rickwood

June 4, 2019

Privacy is trending up. Yay!

It’s becoming stylish. Oh….

It’s becoming pricey. Arrgghh.

What may be considered a basic right for citizens is fast becoming an expensive commercial commodity, available to consumers at a price. Privacy protections for our personal information and security services for our online social interactions are weak in a legislative or regulatory sense, and self-policing policies by major technology providers are failing.

That opens up an opportunity for the market to fill in the gaps.

From annual anti-virus software updates to subscription-based, privacy-centric browsing experiences to fee-for-service virtual private networks (VPNs), more and more privacy and security offerings are available in the consumer marketplace.

Now, dedicated hardware products are upping the ante and providing physical, device-based protection for your onlin..

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AI Powers Productivity in Cloud-based Business and Office Software Suite

AI Powers Productivity in Cloud-based Business and Office Software Suite

By: Lee Rickwood

May 31, 2019

While the company and its service offerings have been around for decades, its newest release of a suite of software tools for business users is an introduction for many people.

Zoho Corporation emerged early in the 2000s from an already-established history of developing web-based business tools and information technology solutions. Beginning with a customer relationship management program in 2006, Zoho has released additional office and business productivity programs pretty much every year since then, covering communications and content creation, sales and marketing, customer support, accounting, back-office operations and more.

In 2017, Zoho unified many of its programs into a suite called Zoho One, and now it has released an AI (artificial intelligence) powered package of tools that’s offered as an online service.

Zoho’s core programs can be supplemented..

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Reviewing the Google Pixel 3a

Reviewing the Google Pixel 3a

By: Ted Kritsonis

May 29, 2019

Google throws out a worthy alternative to consumers feeling the crunch of rising smartphone prices with the more affordable Pixel 3a and 3a XL.

The Pixel 3a isn’t coming out of nowhere. Long rumoured, Google was poised to return to its previous roots under the prior Nexus line, which always offered real bang for the buck. Only this time, the Pixel 3a is a device based on something that came before it. The Pixel 3 remains Google’s current flagship, whereas the Pixel 3a is the pared-down version aimed at anyone looking for a solid handset without breaking the bank.

Almost like a clone
The form factor and feel of the device is almost like a refitted Pixel 3. Put one beside the Pixel 3a and the difference isn’t immediately obvious. There are physical changes, albeit minor ones, that do contrast between them, but it’s almost like playing a game where you have to identify what’s missing in one photo compared..

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Virtual & Augmented Reality World Conference & Expo in Toronto

Virtual & Augmented Reality World Conference & Expo in Toronto

By: Yasmin Ranade

May 29, 2019

The Virtual & Augmented Reality World Conference & Expo takes place from June 1 until June 3 in Toronto. This professional conference and technology exhibition attracts thought leaders, academics, innovators, inventors, researchers, scientists, programmers, gamers, game developers as well as policy makers. And, industry attention in virtual reality technologies spans film, TV, education, healthcare, hardware manufacturers, travel agents, realtors, artists and musician.

Keram Malicki-Sanchez

I asked VRTO Executive Director and Founder, Keram Malicki-Sanchez about the advancements in virtual and augmented reality for education and healthcare, in particular, to which he responded,

“There are countless applications in healthcare for VR and AR. From pre-visualization and education to surgical or operations simulation and practice. In hospital, VR is being used to gamify ..

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Going paperless can be easier with the Fujitsu ScanSnap

Going paperless can be easier with the Fujitsu ScanSnap

By: Ted Kritsonis

May 27, 2019

For Jennie Moore, going paperless through scanning to the cloud was key to running an accounting and auditing business.

To make her bookkeeping practice, Moore Details Inc., a paperless one, it required using her Fujitsu ScanSnap scanner to scan and organize documents. Without it, she says, her revamped workflow couldn’t have enabled her to bring on more clients.

“The ScanSnap scanner was a connector to becoming more paperless, whereas before, we wouldn’t have been able to take on a restaurant client, or a large non-profit organization because they would still need to transfer paper to us,” says Moore.

She went as far as buying ScanSnap scanners and shipping them to clients to improve workflow on both ends — even helping them install the scanner and set up ScanSnap Cloud remotely. “The best thing about that was they could just start firing in their receipts. We’re starting to..

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Are Batteries and Bluetooth Signals the New Digital Lock and Key for PCs?

Are Batteries and Bluetooth Signals the New Digital Lock and Key for PCs?

By: Lee Rickwood

May 24, 2019

In an effort to provide greater online safety and security for valuable personal and business data, tech developers say the best digital lock and key for our PCs is powered by batteries and Bluetooth signals.

Complex passwords and two-factor authenticated log-ins do provide some protection for our digital gadgets and online accounts, but they can also be a weak link in the privacy protection process: many people use the same simple password for multiple log-ins and some have only used four or five passwords throughout their entire digital lives.

On the other hand, you can always find techno-advice that diminishes the whole concept of password protection: “Logging in every time with a password is painful, especially when you’ve got a long one,” wrote one tech guru, adding to that value equation a note of rather obvious realism: “Sometimes too your computer i..

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Canadian Businesses Struggle With How to Protect Their Data

Canadian Businesses Struggle With How to Protect Their Data

By: Christine Persaud

May 22, 2019

Canadian businesses realize the threat that data hacks – which have been coming fast and furious these days – present to their sensitive data. But companies also struggle with the best steps to take in order to protect that data, especially when it comes to new forms of data from emerging technologies like AI and machine learning.

According to a global study by Dell EMC, the Global Data Protection Index, which surveyed 2,200 IT decision makers in both public and private organizations and with more than 250 employees across 18 countries, most businesses recognize the value of their data. Canadian businesses score above average with 97% recognizing the value of data, yet they struggle with how to implement adequate data protection measures. Canadian businesses are, on average, less confident in their data protection infrastructure and their ability to meet future chall..

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