Changing your router’s DNS settings to increase speed and security

By Anthony Bouchard on Apr 29, 2016

At times, you may experience slow hiccups while trying to use the internet from your home. Sometimes, these problems can be attributed to your router’s DNS settings because your ISP may not always have the best DNS server speeds.

Your DNS server settings can also affect your security as you use the internet because some DNS servers come with built-in firewalls and security measures to prevent you from opening malicious or phishing websites, while others don’t do anything at all to protect you.

In this tutorial, we’ll show you how you can edit the DNS settings on your wireless router if you’re experiencing slower internet speeds than you should be. Read More

 

How to fix IP address conflicts on your Wi-Fi network

By Anthony Bouchard on Apr 15, 2016

Every so often, you might end up with two devices on your Wi-Fi network that have the same IP address. This conflict can cause a plethora of problems with trying to use the internet on any of the devices affected.

Fortunately, there’s a really easy to way reset your IP addresses on your iOS devices or Macs, and in this tutorial, we’re going to show you how! Read More

 

What to do when your iPhone or iPad can’t connect to Wi-Fi

By Anthony Bouchard on Apr 8, 2016

Wi-Fi is great, when it works, but sometimes those wireless networks we use to connect to the web can experience trouble. In these moments, your iOS devices may be unable to establish a connection to the internet, and it can be frustrating.

In this troubleshooting tutorial, we’ll walk you through some steps to get your Wi-Fi network up and running again. Read More

 

How to stop your iPad and other devices from ringing when you get a call on your iPhone

By Anthony Bouchard on Mar 28, 2016

If you own more than one Apple device, be it an iPhone, an iPad, an iPod touch, or a Mac, you might have encountered this situation where a call on your iPhone rings simultaneously on your other devices. This is part of a feature called Continuity, and in most cases, it’s really helpful.

But if like most of us at iDB, you own several Apple devices, the situation can quickly escalate and you end up having your iPhone, two iPads, and maybe even your Mac ring at the same time.

For some, this can be incredibly useful, but for others it just creates an array of unwanted notifications and multiple devices ringing at once. This can get really annoying if you have all of your devices sitting around the same desk when you get a call because it sounds like a phone call symphony.

If you’d like to fine-tune which of your devices are allowed to take phone calls from your iPhone, then follow along with us. In this tutorial, we’ll show you how to keep your iPad, iPod touch, or Mac from ringing every time your iPhone gets a phone call. Read More

 

AT&T carrier update for iOS 9.3 allows for Wi-Fi Calling outside the US

By Sébastien Page on Mar 22, 2016

In a text message sent today to its eligible customers, AT&T announced that those who have activated the Wi-Fi Calling feature on their iPhone can now make and receive phone calls from and to the US at no charge when traveling internationally, assuming they have first updated to iOS 9.3 and installed the newly available carrier update.

This marks a small yet important change to how users can benefit from Wi-Fi Calling. Up until now, Wi-Fi calling for AT&T customers restricted them to using the service only from the U.S., Puerto Rico, or U.S. Virgin Islands. But now, it is opened to any country (except for a few exceptions), meaning an AT&T Wi-Fi Calling user can make calls to the US, or receive calls from the US anywhere in the world as long as there is a Wi-Fi connection. Read More

 

Apple supplier Broadcom getting out of Wi-Fi chip business

By Christian Zibreg on Mar 18, 2016

Fabless semiconductor company Broadcom is looking to phase-out its Wi-Fi chip-making business, according to industry sources who spoke with Taiwanese trade publication DigiTimes. Broadcom is currently Apple’s top supplier of Wi-Fi chips used in Macs, iPhones, iPads and iPods so it looks like the Cupertino firm might be forced to find a new supplier soon.

Broadcom designs its own products but contracts out actual silicon production to Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company Limited (TSMC), which also builds Apple-designed application processors for iOS devices. Read More

 

Why and how to use custom DNS settings

By Anthony Bouchard on Mar 5, 2016

When you visit a website on your computer, such as iDownloadBlog or Google, you’re using domain name system (DNS) protocol to exchange information between your computer and the server providing you with that website.

Depending on the DNS server you’re using on your Mac or iOS device, you might not be experiencing the best speeds and web securities that you could be. In this piece, we’ll tell you why you may want to consider switching to a new DNS and we’ll even show you how to do it. Read More

 

Google launches experimental hands-free payments app

By Christian Zibreg on Mar 4, 2016

Hands Free, a new Google app for iOS and Android, allows you to pay for in-store purchases without even pulling a smartphone out of your pocket. The Internet giant said that they’re piloting the new app so for the time being it’s available to South Bay residents.

Those who would test the app shall be treated to up to $5 off their first Hands Free purchase at participating stores, which include a small number of McDonald’s, Papa John’s and local eateries in the area. Read More

 

Using your iPhone to diagnose your car’s check engine light

By Anthony Bouchard on Mar 2, 2016

All the do-it-yourself mechanics out there love being able to troubleshoot their own check engine light (CEL) to see what’s going on under the hood of their own cars. Typically, doing so requires an expensive OBD II scanner tool that plugs into the OBD II port underneath the dash.

But, with an app on your iPhone and a tiny accessory that plugs into the OBD II port, you could save some money and you’ll still have access to a lot of the information the scan tool would give you. In fact, because of how advanced your iPhone is, you may even get more information than a lot of the scan tools will offer.

In this review, we’ll be taking a look at the LELink Bluetooth Low Energy OBD II car diagnostic tool, which can be had for about $35 on Amazon, as well as the $9.99 OBD Fusion app, which can be had from the iOS App Store.
Read More

 

How to fix Ethernet problems after a recent Mac security update

By Anthony Bouchard on Feb 27, 2016

As my colleague Christian reported on Saturday, some Mac models have been plagued by non-working Ethernet ports after installing a new security update outed by Apple. Although a lot of modern Macs don’t even have an Ethernet port, many models still carry it and many people still love using a wired internet connection because it’s faster, more reliable, and more secure than a wireless network.

The security update, known as “031-51913 Incompatible Kernel Extension Configuration Data 3.28.1,” reportedly blacklists the Broadcom BCM5701 driver used by the Ethernet port that comes standard on many Mac machines.

Fortunately, there’s a light at the end of the tunnel for anyone experiencing issues with their Ethernet ports after installing this security update. Apple has issued a support document on Sunday that notes how to fix the problem. In this tutorial, we’ll go over the steps to fix the problem yourself.

Read More

 

This jailbreak app for iOS shows all your Wi-Fi network passwords

By Anthony Bouchard on Feb 13, 2016

Most of you probably use a Wi-Fi network on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch, and some of them may even require a password to gain access to.

Have you ever been in a predicament where you’ve needed to use someone’s Wi-Fi network and they wouldn’t tell you the password for it to your face, but they had no problem typing it in for you so you could use the network without knowing what the password was? Or, have you just plain forgotten the password to one of your most-used networks when you have a new machine or device you want to use to connect to it?

If you’ve been in either of these situations, then a new jailbreak app called Wifi Passwords List, which is a free download from Cydia’s BigBoss repository, could be of use to you. It’ll show you the password of any secured Wi-Fi network you’ve ever used on your iOS device. Read More

 

iPhone 7 could feature ultra-fast Li-Fi wireless technology, iOS code indicates

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 19, 2016

You can now put a new kind of ultra-fast wireless networking technology on your list of potential hardware advances that might be in tow for Apple’s ‘iPhone 7’ refresh later this year.

As first spotted by Twitter user Chase Fromm, code strings in iOS indicate that Apple could be experimenting with an ultra-fast, light-based wireless data technology, dubbed Li-Fi.

In modulating visible light in a manner that is imperceptible to the human eye, Li-Fi promises a theoretical throughput capacity of up to 224 gigabits per second versus up to just a few gigabits per second for the current-generation 802.11ac Wi-Fi standard. Read More

 

Apple releases OS X 10.11.2 El Capitan update

By Christian Zibreg on Dec 8, 2015

Following an extensive testing, Apple on Tuesday released OS X 10.11.2 (build number 15C50), the second major update to El Capitan, for public consumption. In addition to improving the stability, compatibility and security of your Mac, OS X 10.11.2 improves iCloud Photo Sharing for Live Photos, as well as the reliability of Wi-Fi networking, Handoff and AirDrop.

Moreover, the software update includes fixes for Bluetooth devices disconnecting on a whim, the Mail app deleting messages in an offline Exchange account and problems with importing photos from an iPhone to a Mac using a USB cable. Read More

 

iOS 9.2 beta 2 brings AT&T Wi-Fi Calling to the Mac

By Christian Zibreg on Nov 4, 2015

The latest beta version of what would become the second major update to iOS 9, which was seeded to developers yesterday, enables Wi-Fi Calling through AT&T on your Mac, 9to5Mac discovered.

While Wi-Fi Calling allows you to place a phone call in an area with little or no cellular coverage, bringing AT&T Wi-Fi Calling to the Mac and other devices you own lets you make and receive phone calls on your Mac (or iPad or iPod touch, for that matter) without needing to be on the same network, or even in the same area, as your iPhone. Read More

 

How to check Wi-Fi signal strength on Apple TV

By Christian Zibreg on Nov 1, 2015

If you’re planning on using your Apple TV over a wireless rather than wired network, your experience may suffer from various issues related to Wi-Fi.

For instance, your Apple TV might be unable to connect to a Wi-Fi network, refuse to stream movies and songs or update apps in the background.

Usually the first step in troubleshooting Wi-Fi issues that might be plaguing your box entails determining whether the Apple TV has enough Wi-Fi signal strength. This is important because the lower the signal, the poorer your experience will be as you’ll struggle with reduced download speeds and poor streaming quality.

This tutorial will show you how to determine the Wi-Fi signal strength on your Apple TV. Read More

 

iOS 9’s Wi-Fi Assist, fully explained and demystified

By Christian Zibreg on Oct 12, 2015

Wi-Fi Assist, a new feature in iOS 9, was initially met with some skepticism as Apple did a lousy job detailing how it works beyond stating that Wi-Fi Assist automatically uses cellular data when Wi-Fi connectivity is poor.

“With Wi-Fi Assist, you can stay connected to the Internet even if you have a poor Wi-Fi connection,” the iPhone maker said somewhat critically.

However, inexperienced users might encounter some unwanted effects when using their devices in areas with low Wi-Fi signal because Wi-Fi Assist will activate their carrier’s mobile data network and therefore possibly lead to increased data consumption and unwanted overage fees on the wireless bill.

Here’s what Apple is saying how Wi-Fi exactly works. Read More

 

New in watchOS 2: status icon when Apple Watch is connected to known Wi-Fi on its own

By Christian Zibreg on Oct 7, 2015

Joining a bunch of status indicator icons at the top of the Apple Watch screen is a handy new icon displayed when the device is on a known Wi-Fi network without the paired iPhone present.

Before watchOS 2, the wearable used to indicate that it’s lost connection with its paired iPhone but would not distinguish whether it’s remained connected to a known Wi-Fi network on its own. Read More

 

If iOS 9 is gobbling up all your mobile data, you should turn Wi-Fi Assist off

By Christian Zibreg on Sep 28, 2015

iOS 9 includes a new feature designed to optimize network performance by automatically switching to a mobile data network if a poor Wi-Fi signal is detected or Wi-Fi responds painfully too slow. It’s called Wi-Fi Assist and comes enabled by default on iPhones and cellular iPads running iOS 9 or iOS 9.0.1.

As first noted by Quartz, some iPhone owners with poor Wi-Fi reception are seeing dramatic increases in their mobile data usage after updating to iOS 9.

For example, some folks are reporting a jump from one to as much as seven gigabytes since updating to iOS 9. To avoid unwanted overage fees on your wireless bill, disable Wi-Fi Assist with just a few taps, here’s how. Read More

 

Portal for iOS: wireless file transfers from your computer to iPhone made easy

By Christian Zibreg on Aug 26, 2015

Portal, an Android app that launched earlier this summer, is now available on your iPhone free of charge in the App Store.

Created by a company called Pushbullet which makes a namesake cross-platform notification mirroring utility, Portal for iPhone uses QR codes and takes advantage of peer-to-peer connectivity to transfer very large files and folders between your devices in a snap.

With Portal, you can transfer files from your computer to an iOS device via a simple interface that can be accessed through any web browser. The app lets you transfer as many files as you’d like and imposes no file size limits.

Here’s a quick review of Portal based on my brief hands-on time with the app. Read More

 

Apple posts OS X Yosemite 10.10.4 with Wi-Fi fixes, Mail and Photos improvements and more

By Christian Zibreg on Jun 30, 2015

In addition to the new iOS 8.4 software update with a redesigned Music app, Beats 1 radio and Apple Music for the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad, Apple also released the free OS X Yosemite 10.10.4 software update for Macs.

In addition to various other big fixes, enhancements and nice-to-haves, this release of OS X Yosemite gets rid of the dreaded “discoveryd” network process which was responsible for a range of network issues, marking the return of the old but way more reliable “mDNSResponder” process. Read More

 
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