I’m driving a new 2017 Mercedes E300 today, and it comes with a built-in wireless charger, which is a nice feature for a $ 60,000 car. Now, let’s overlook the poor placement of the charger — buried behind the cupholders, for some reason — and get to the main issue.
If you have an iPhone 8 or iPhone X, which come with wireless charging, you can charge your phone on the pad, unlike previous iPhones. But there is a major flaw that keeps driving me crazy, and it’s Apple Pay. Since the charging pad also has NFC, the iPhone thinks you’re trying to pay for something and automatically activates Apple Pay every time you put the phone down to charge.
Seems like a small issue, right? Well if you’re playing music in your car from your phone, as…
Now that headphone jacks are being killed off, there’s no choice but to look at Bluetooth alternatives. There are tons of form factors out there, but the most fashionable right now is the truly wireless earbud, which is difficult to get right and usually quite expensive. The Jabra Elite Sport is a decent option, and it’s currently going for $ 100 less than its original MSRP.
At $ 249 there are potentially other options out there that make more sense, but for just $ 149 the Elite Sport is well worth your time.
Anker is best known for making portable battery packs and other charging accessories, but it’s been increasingly dabbling in personal audio. The company ran a Kickstarter for some fancy earbuds a few months ago, but those ones aren’t for sale yet. You can, however, get the slightly less fancy version right now. The Zolo Liberty Bluetooth earbuds are on sale today for $ 99.99.
These are “completely wireless” earbuds, which means there’s no cable connecting the two earbuds.
Republic Wireless, a popular MVNO that runs off of Sprint and T-Mobile, offers, among other things, some pretty comprehensive Wi-Fi calling features that caught the eye of Walt Mossberg last year.
So now the company is doing something a little differently for its first hardware product, a smart speakerphone called Anywhere HQ. According to Republic’s website, Anywhere HQ syncs with your regular phone number and allows you to make and receive calls.
There isn’t a ton of information on the device out yet, but it seems that the Anywhere HQ consists of a cordless phone that lives on a dock that can also function as a speakerphone using a speaker on the back. The page also says that the speaker will include some kind of smart…