MOBILE ARTICLES / ANDROID, IPHONE, IPAD, AND MORE

An iPad makes a great “kiosk” device–a tablet restricted to one specific app for your home or small business. You can create a makeshift kiosk using the Guided Access feature, or enable Single App Mode for a true kiosk environment.

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When you leave for work, you likely turn down your thermostat before you head out the door to save energy. But the Nest Thermostat can automatically do that for you, by detecting when you’re away and when you come home.

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It’s easy to think you’re stuck using boring old letters and numbers to name your smartphone’s app folders, but with the wonderful world of emoji, your folders will take on a new life of their own.

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By default, on an iPhone 6/6 Plus or 6S/6S Plus, photos for your contacts are displayed in the Messages app. If you don’t want to see those photos, though, you can hide them with a simple setting.

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If you have notifications enabled, apps normally display your messages right on your lock screen. But you can hide the text of those messages without disabling the lock screen notifications entirely, allowing you to see you have a message while preventing people from reading those messages over your shoulder.

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The beauty of technology isn’t just doing more stuff–it’s doing stuff quickly. Whether you want to call a specific contact with one tap, keep your phone unlocked when you’re at home or work, launch the camera in a flash to quickly capture the perfect moment, or search for an app while in a rush, here are some of the best shortcuts built into Android that you’re probably not using.

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Belkin’s WeMo lineup of smarthome products makes it really easy to turn almost anything into a smart appliance. But if you aren’t sure what the difference is between the WeMo Switch and the WeMo Insight Switch,  here’s what you need to know.

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Bright white LEDs have progressively made their way onto all kinds of electronic devices. If you own a Sonos player, you’re already aware that they too come with a bright white LED on top, which can be distracting in dimly-lit rooms.

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Everyone likes to know who’s calling before they actually pick up the phone, and the easiest way to achieve that is with custom ringtones for specific callers. That way, when your phone starts blasting “Cherry Pie,” you know it’s your wife. Or when it’s “Roll Out (My Business),” you know it’s your boss. Fortunately, this is a simple process in Android. Here’s how to do it.

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You found somebody’s lost iPhone. They were cautious enough to enable a passcode, so you can’t root around in their contacts looking for the owner. If Siri is enabled, though, she can help you get the iPhone back to the right person.

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So you’ve got a fancy new Logitech Harmony remote, ready to control your entire home theater–but one of your devices is a home theater PC. Don’t worry: Your Harmony can control your PC too, it just isn’t immediately obvious how.

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Guided Access allows you to set a screen time limit on your iPhone or iPad. This is great if you have a child–they can only play games for as long as you choose. The iPhone or iPad will be automatically locked after the time limit expires.

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One big feature of the Nest Thermostat is the ability to automatically adjust the temperature for you by learning your patterns over time. But if you’d rather have total manual control over the Nest, here’s how to add some quick and easy temperature presets to your phone’s home screen.

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While we like our Sonos player for its excellent functionality and usability across an abundance of devices, it unfortunately is missing an official Apple Watch app, which would really round things out.

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The iPhone has a hidden “field test” mode that shows all kinds of technical details about signal strength, cell towers, and more. Most of it is not very useful to the average person, but you can make it show you your phone’s actual signal strength instead of just how many bars you’re getting. And that can be useful.

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Philips Hue is a really cool Wi-Fi-enabled lighting system that allows you to turn on and off your lights right from your smartphone (or from other smarthome-controlling devices, like the Amazon Echo). It’s one of the first steps in turning your house into a smarthome of the future. Here’s how to set up your Philips Hue lights using the new Philips Hue app.

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Plex Media Server is a user-friendly way to store all your movies, shows, and other media in one place–and make it accessible from any device, whether you’re at home or on-the-go. If you’re looking for a no-headache way to watch your movies anywhere, this is it.

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Vibrations are a great way to alert you when someone is calling or texting without notifying everyone else around you. The only problem: you may not know who is contacting you unless you pull your iPhone out of your pocket.

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When you first set up a new Chromecast, you have the option to give it a name. This is how the Chromecast identifies itself on the network and to casting devices, which is how you know which unit you’re casting to. But if your Chromecast started life as “Living Room Chromecast” and you moved it to another room, it only makes sense to change its name. It’s a quick and easy process—here’s how to do it.

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Supervised Mode is intended for organizations, but you can enable it on your own iPhone or iPad. Supervised Mode gets you a few extra features like hiding included apps, and always-on VPNs.

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After every Uber ride, you can rate your driver out of five stars based on how good or bad the ride was, but you may not know that Uber drivers also rate you as a passenger. Here’s how to view your Uber passenger rating.

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Your Nest Thermostat can learn your preferences over time and automatically adjust the temperature accordingly. But if you’d rather program specific temperatures for specific times, here’s how to set a schedule on your Nest.

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Earlier this month, Google added a Goals feature to the Google Calendar apps for iOS and Android. Goals automatically finds free time in your calendar and schedules recurring events to help you achieve your goals. Here’s how to get it all set up.

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Phones are private, full of personal data and messages. Guided Access allows you to share your iPhone with someone without being able to access that data–allowing them to look at photos, place a phone call, or play a game while your stuff stays hidden.

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Belkin has a diverse lineup of WeMo products, but its latest addition is the WeMo Insight Switch. It not only allows you to turn appliances on and off from your smartphone, but it also monitors power usage and provides estimates on how much you’re spending by having that space heater plugged in. Here’s how to make the most of that information.

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