Tech News and Commentary
Dave and the team discuss Facebook’s damage control ad, Alphabet earned $9.4b for the first quarter this year, Elon Musk’s cyborg dragon and more.
Joe in Durham, North Carolina listens on NewsRadio 680 WPTF asked: “We recently bought a 4K HD TV for the living room and we’re thinking about buying a new television for the bedroom. The new TV would be 1080, whereas the living room is 4K. We now use Netflix – the 4K version. Can we watch Netflix on the 1080 TV in the bedroom or will there be problems with that?”
Joe, you have nothing to worry about.
Netflix only has a 4K plan as a way to make the higher price seem more justified, but most of the people on the 4K plan use it as a way to have more 1080p screens. You see the 4K plan is actually what they call their “premium plan” and it allows the subscriber to stream on 4 screens at the same time in 1080p or 4K “when available”
Netflix doesn’t actually have its entire catalog available in 4K, so odds are that you’ve been watching a lot of 1080p content either as is, or upscaled to 4K by your living room TV.
There is no restriction on watching lesser quality content, Netflix won’t care, if anything they’ll be glad you’re paying for 4K for one of your TVs.So go ahead and enjoy whatever quality of content you can get on whichever TV or mobile device you prefer, even if it’s not the top quality at all times.
Dwayne in Point, Texas listens on 710 KEEL asked: “I am a truck driver and have a TV in my truck. If I take an Aux cord and connect it to the headphone jack on the TV, can I connect that to the radio in order to play the TV over the stereo?”
Dwayne, as long as your radio has an aux input, it won’t care if the audio is coming from a TV or any other source.
HDMI can be a little touchy, it’s a digital format that checks to see what’s at the other end and whether or not it could be a recording device ready to pirate content, but aux cords are just a regular old analog connection that carries the signal.
There’s no analysis and no decision-making, your aux port will just accept whatever signal comes its way and play it.
Just remember to keep your TV’s volume loud enough that you can manage it to your satisfaction through your radio’s volume knob.
Rob in New Zealand asked: “I would love to have a heads up on smart ring technology and is it too early to consider a ring as a genuine replacement for a touch-free credit/debit card etc? Love your shows and Kia Ora from New Zealand land of the long white cloud. Cheers”
Rob, we can’t give you a definite reason as to why smart rings haven’t taken off as payment methods, but there doesn’t seem to be a single ring in the market that has found a strong following.
The ones we’ve seen and tried are on the bulky side, some big enough that it’d probably hurt the rest of your fingers to have it pressed up against them all day.
The main reason we can’t really recommend the rings is that none of them seem to work very well. If you read end-user reviews, they all complain about the rings not doing what they should, or not doing it reliably, and if you’re looking for an alternative to an NFC-enabled card then you probably want some sort of reliability.
For now, we’d say stick to the cards, phones, and watches, the popular NFC payment methods. In the future, we will probably see other viable alternatives pop up, but these rings don’t seem to be there yet.
Geri in Baton Rouge, Louisiana listens on Talk 107.3 WBRP asked: “How can you tell if any of your smart devices have been hacked?”
Geri, as far as we can tell there’s no foolproof way, at least not for the end user.
It is possible to scan the traffic on your own network to try to detect a pattern that could indicate that your devices were hacked, but there are no popular scanners that seem to do a good job. In fact, a malicious actor actually published a script that was supposed to scan for hacked devices, but really tried to install malware instead.
IoT devices are new, and while they’re fairly solid, they’re not 100% secure, as evidenced by Mirai and other threats, so try to always keep them updated and limit the physical access to it from anyone who shouldn’t be trusted.
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