Trending February 2024 # Why You Should Always Use The Free Applecare Repair Service # Suggested March 2024 # Top 11 Popular

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Repairing the Primary Problem… and Fixing Other Issues Too

The obvious benefit for using the free repair service is the direct issue gets resolved. In this case, the iPhone 5 sleep/wake button was replaced. But that’s not always where the repairs end. Because Apple runs thorough diagnostic tests on the device before sending it back to you, they may discover other issues, and, because their customer service is quite generous, they often repair the other issues while they have the device, at no cost to you.

That brings me back to my own iPhone 5 which was recently sent in, and not only did Apple repair the malfunctioning Lock / Power button, but also the camera (regular readers may recall that the camera was mysteriously loose and sometimes not working, an issue some other users reported), and Apple even gave the iPhone a brand new battery – which as far as I knew, had no issues at all – but the new battery does last a significantly longer amount of time. Is that awesome or what?

Here’s the AppleCare Service Summary that was returned with my iPhone showing what was replaced:

The top item listed is the sleep/wake/lock button which the iPhone was originally sent in for, next on the list is the battery, and last is the new camera. All repaired by Apple on an out of warranty iPhone, for free.

How Long Do Apple Repairs Take?

If you’re located near an Apple Store, sometimes they can repair the device that day, sometimes it’ll take a few days, and sometimes they just swap you out with another device onsite immediately. What happens really depends on a variety of things, ranging from the issue being repaired, the rep you work with, and the stores availability of replacement components.

Visiting an Apple Store is inconvenient for me, thus I went for the mail-in route. After making a repair request through the Apple site, Apple sent a box through FedEx and it arrived the next day, and I sent the phone off immediately. It went to Apple’s primary repair center in Elk Grove, California, and was returned to me within the same week, in total it was gone about 4 full business days. For a mail-in repair service, that’s quite fast, and certainly much faster than most other repair services I’ve worked with. Keep in mind this is for out-of-warranty devices. If your iPhone is still under warranty, they’ll usually just send you a new iPhone right away, and the box sent with it is used to return your malfunctioning device with – meaning you’re never without a phone.

What You Should Do Before Sending the iPhone in for Repair

The big thing to remember when sending an iPhone (or any item) for repair is to back up all your data first. For the iPhone, that means backing it up to a computer with iTunes, or to iCloud, or better yet – both. This lets you quickly restore your stuff when you get the phone back, without missing a beat.

Also, don’t forget to turn off Find My iPhone (otherwise the iPhone could be stuck on iCloud Activation Lock), remove any cases from the iPhone, and Apple prefers it if you reset the iPhone to factory default settings before sending it in too. Assuming you talk to an Apple rep on the phone or through online chat, they’ll walk you through all these processes as well.

Obviously not every iPhone or device sent in to Apple will receive additional repairs for free, but there’s certainly a chance something else will be found and they’ll fix that as well. So if your iPhone is eligible under the Sleep / Lock button replacement program (or any other free repair service for that matter), why not send yours and see what happens? At the very least, your power button will work again.


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Why You Should Always Safely Remove Your Usb Devices. Especially Usb Storage Devices.

This is one of those topics that always divides a room and it’s easy to understand why. Safely removing a USB device from your computer, especially flash drives is painfully slow and in the scheme of things seems pretty pointless. Ninety percent of the time or more, you will get away with removing your device without any consequences, the other times, well, you might be in for a world of heartache. This guide aims to shed some light on why you may want to consider safely removing your USB devices in the future. At least the storage devices.

How to Download Videos From Facebook Without Programs or Apps.

USB connections and devices have been around since the mid-1990’s and apart from the annoying connection “Two ways to Plugin, takes three tries” they are invaluable. With so many different devices coming with a USB connection, it’s hard to know which ones you should safely remove and which ones you don’t really need too. Below are a few reasons why safely removing a USB device is a good habit to get into.

Why You Should Safely Remove USB Devices.

So we have established how annoying it is to safely remove a USB device, now we need to establish why you should spend the extra time doing so.

If this doesn’t convince you to safely remove your USB device, then there is no convincing you. The number one reason you should safely remove your USB device is to protect the data on it from being lost or corrupted. As we mentioned earlier, 9 times out of 10 you can remove a device without any issue, however, this does come with risks. You never know when your data will be corrupted or lost. For other devices that do not contain data such as headphones webcams and keyboards, you can continue to remove them without any worries about them being damaged. Just double check the manufacturer’s suggestions when you first open your device to make sure.

USB flash drives and external hard drives connected via USB need power use a small amount of power and if they are suddenly disconnected can actually physically damage the device. Again there goes all your data. 

How to Safely Remove USB Devices.

As annoying and slow as it is, safely removing a USB device doesn’t actually take that much time. Three seconds should do it on average. If you’ve never safely removed a USB device before you can follow the steps below.

If you have more than one USB device connected you will need to choose the one you wish to disconnect.

When the device or the icon disappears from the taskbar, you can physically remove your device from the computer.

The worst part of this process is breaking any old habits you may have. Just remember you have spent ages gathering the data on your device, so why risk losing it all because you didn’t want to spend a few more seconds removing your device safely. Perhaps in future Windows will create an official keyboard shortcut that can be used to safely remove a USB device.

Why You Should Wait For The Iphone 5

I was wrong about the iPhone 4s. I said it would be great. I predicted it would be the best phone ever built. The truth, it turns out, is that the iPhone 4s kind of sucks.

There. I said it.

And I might be wrong again with the headline for this column. I don’t have much faith in Apple to get it right for the upcoming iPhone 5, either. The iPhone 4s has shaken my confidence in Apple’s legendary ability to bang out hit after hit.

My confident, bullish prediction about the iPhone 4s was based on Apple consistently improving on each new iPhone upgrade, and on the company’s stellar achievement in getting the iPad so right the first time, and so super-right the second time.

The iPhone 4s is the first stumble by Apple since the company launched the original iPhone in chúng tôi me, there’s only one reason to buy and own an iPhone 4s: Siri.

Apple’s Siri voice-based virtual assistant technology is flawed, but well worth it. More on that below. First, let me tell you why the iPhone 4s isn’t the phone Apple said it would be at their October 4 launch.

The iPhone 4s should be a better phone than the iPhone 4. Looking at the specs, and the list of new features and capabilities, it should be everything the iPhone is, plus better, faster and easier to use.

Some aspects of the iPhone are better. Siri is very useful. Some of the accessibility features are fantastic, even for people without disabilities.

Beyond that, the phone is harder and more annoying to use than the iPhone 4 was. Here’s why.

I haven’t run objective tests, but I do have some “anecdata” for you: It feels like it has half the battery life of the previous phone. Personally, I can’t get through an entire day without charging it.

Again, this is unscientific, but the battery problems appear to be caused primarily by iOS 5. The reason I say this is that my wife installed the upgrade on her iPhone 4, and that phone also took a huge hit in battery life.

Other reasons are likely to be that Siri is always loaded and ready and battery consuming when you use it. Find My Friends, which is Apple’s Latitude-like family-and-friend stalker application, is constantly hitting the network.

These are all nice features. But being able to turn the phone on is also a feature, one that becomes unavailable when the battery dies. The battery life creates problems for iPhone 4s users.

The camera was supposed to be great, the best camera in any cell phone. Sometimes it is. But usually, it’s not.

That last bit, the “reduced motion blur” is flat-out wrong. Apple claims that because they say the camera has image stabilization. But this feature is undetectable in real life.

If you’re outside on a sunny day, or are taking pictures of subjects that aren’t moving, the iPhone 4s takes really great pictures. But reduce the light even slightly, and with your subject in any kind of motion, and your pictures will be so blurry you’ll simply delete them.

Most of the pictures I take with this phone are unusable because of motion blur. I can’t detect any image stabilization in videos, either.

I took better pictures, on average, with the camera in the iPhone 4.

The yellow is turned way up. As a result, the screen is unappealing to look at. Blues look greenish. The overall appearance of the screen is somewhat nauseating to look at.

Some say the problem affects mostly black phones, and not white ones.

When I put my old iPhone 4 next to a new black 4s as well as a white one, it was clear that the white 4s was a little too yellow, and the black 4s was way too yellow. It was also clear that the iPhone 4 screen has much better color than the new phones.

You expect improvements with new phones, not regression. But that’s what you get with the iPhone 4s — especially the black one — a reduction in screen quality.

Personally, I intend to exchange my black iPhone 4s for a white one.

Why Bloggers Should Use Paid Hosting? – Webnots

People think creating a site with free hosting providers like Weebly, Wix, chúng tôi Blogger, etc. gives them the opportunity to concentrate on content and get rid of all hosting related issues. Probably most of the new webmasters do not even aware of the importance of having control over hosting server. Free hosting is good for smaller sites and for people do not want to invest more money on their site.

Learn WordPress: Check out 500+ free WordPress tutorials.

The website’s root directories are located on the hosting server. You need to access them for controlling your website’s behavior. When you are planning to build a larger site, it will become impossible to control the site without root access. In addition, you also need to have full control over content backup and restore in emergency situation.

Bloggers Life Cycle

The general cycle of webmasters, especially the bloggers runs like below:

Bloggers start their site with free site builders and leave the site without continuing over the period of time.

After initial trouble with free hosting providers, hardly 20% of bloggers migrate their sites to shared hosting plans.

Only 5% of bloggers continue in long run, finally upgrading to dedicated hosting server and maintain their site properly.

The last category of 5% of bloggers might have lost at least few years and many sleepless nights before finally understood the importance of paid hosting. The objective of this article is to inform the readers about the importance of paid hosting before wasting few years to understand the real facts.

Free Hosting – A Curse or Bless? Free Hosting with Free Subdomain

Think of the following points:

Free Hosting with Custom Domain

This is another option people think they can save money spent on hosting by showing hiding free hosting from visitors. Unfortunately, it is not always about visitors, as a site owner you need control over content. Think of the following scenarios where you still need paid hosting for your site:

You want to redirect a page of your own subdomain to another site or subdomain. At the maximum, free hosts allow to set 301 redirect for the same domain in the front end without allowing to access .htaccess file. Did you encounter the page you are visiting asking you to enter human verification code? How did people do such restrictions on their site or block specific IPs from certain countries? You really don’t need to be a technical expert to do this. Adding small codes in the .htaccess file is sufficient to do such restrictions.

Did you think of enhancing your Sitemap file? For example, a Sitemap index file will consist of many Sitemaps from that site like posts, pages, images, etc. Free hosts offer rigid Sitemap with minimum capabilities which may not be sufficient when your site is grown in size.

Most important factor is having control over your backup. Free hosts may offer email or XML backup which may not have complete compatibility with other hosting platforms. Migrating a free hosted site will become a nightmare when you decide to move to paid hosting platform.

Why to Go for Paid Hosting?

Some free hosting providers allow users to modify the source HTML / CSS. This is hidden trick to encourage users spending lot of time on beautifying their free site. Users should understand that this is not same as having access to root directories. Below are some of simple reasons for a site owner to go for paid hosting services:

You can get quality support with paid hosting and install different type of CMS like WordPress, Drupal, Joomla, etc.

Cost of Paid Hosting

The same $8 per month is more than sufficient to get a very good shared hosting services. You can get hosting from leading companies like Bluehost, DreamHost, GoDaddy or HostGator. Perhaps by adding few more dollars you will get dedicated hosting with SSL, IP, daily backup and site security. Below is the rate card from Bluehost for various shared hosting plans. It can provide you an approximate overview of industry rate for paid hosting services:

Bluehost Pricing Plans

Though the rate is for initial term, you can always move your site another host that offers good deal.

SEO and Paid Hosting

Site migration and merger activities need lot of redirect setup. You can do this easily with paid hosting services without loosing your existing search ranking.

Search engines give more weightage to page speed. Paid servers have lightning speed compared to slow free or shared hosting servers.

For the same type of content (competitors) search engine prefer custom domain sites with paid hosting.

You can block bad bots crawling your site with paid hosting. This otherwise may affect actual search engine crawlers and user experience.

Integrating tracking and verification codes for analytics, webmaster tools, etc. is easy with paid hosting.


If you are happy with small site with bigger aims, then custom domain with free hosting option is sufficient. However, you need to plan it right from the start in order to run bigger websites. Choosing a right hosting company is a make or break deal for many bloggers. Therefore, we strongly recommend choosing a could or dedicated hosting server. Though you don not need this at the start, that will be the only solution later when your site receive handsome traffic.

The Best Free Vpn Service In 2023 – Itop Vpn

Protecting your data has become one of the most essential things, and VPNs are great for just that! But there are so many VPNs out there. Which one to pick?

iTop VPN is one of the best VPNs out there, and it also comes with a free plan that most top brands don’t. Here is a complete review of iTop VPN and how to use it.

When you connect with a VPN, it authenticates the client with the VPN server and the server then applies encryption protocol to the data that is sent and recieved. 

This way the VPN creates an encryted tunnel, which secures the data traveling from the sender to the receiver and vice versa. Once the data arrives, the encryption is removed so that it can be read on the other end.

iTop VPN is a versatile service that not only protects your online presence but also provides other important features like having dedicated servers for streaming platforms and gaming. 

It also is free to use with limited servers, so you can give it a try without investing a dollar.

Once you have familiarised yourself with the service, then you can decide whether to subcribe to their premium plan or not, 

It also connects with IPv6 servers as the top priority, which is much more secure than the IPv4 protocol. Other than that, it also prevents your DNS system from getting hijacked or spammed by Cybercriminals.

One of the important necessities of a VPN service is not compromising on the internet speed after connecting to servers. This is where most VPNs fail as connecting to servers lead to drastic speed drops, making surfing the internet extremely annoying.

iTop VPN however comes with high speed servers. After connecting to their premium servers, I have personally checked the internet speed and it is pretty fast.

iTop VPN is an excellent option as it easily connects with streaming services like Hulu and Amazon Prime Video with specific servers.

They have these separate servers for streaming services that you can pick from the main menu. Connecting to these is super easy, and they work like a charm.

If you want a VPN service to connect to streaming services, iTop VPN is a good pick.

As mentioned in the earlier section, iTop VPN not only has separate specific servers for streaming services, but they also have for downloading using P2P servers and for gaming with multiple games like COD, Roblox, PUBG, and Minecraft separated.

As said earlier, iTop VPN is free to use and comes with a large number of free servers from around the world. 

The service also provides some free streaming servers, which is great for a new users.

iTop VPN is pretty easy to use. All you need to do is visit their official website and download VPN for PC.

After it completes downloading, run the setup file and install the app. 

Note: During installation, iTop VPN will ask you whether you want to install one of its other apps also, like their iTop PDF reader. If you don’t want it, then make sure to uncheck that option during the installation.

There aren’t many free servers, but at least you will know how it works before purchasing it.

Now, if you have purchased the VPN service, you must select the Already Purchased option at the bottom left.

Now log in with your account and password, and it will activate the app.

Here I have connected with the Twitch US servers and can easily run Twitch without any issue or buffering.

8 Best Kodi Alternatives You Should Use

Kodi is a versatile tool that comes in very handy for watching movies, TV shows, live TV, sports, or playing retro games online. You can also use it to manage offline content that you already own. The best part about Kodi is that it is open-source and supports third-party add-ons that augment its utility in a large number of ways. However, getting to learn and use Kodi can be taxing on some users, especially those who are not very keen on DIY. So, if you are looking for a more refined media consumption experience, we have listed out Kodi alternatives that will offer you nearly the same amount of flexibility in terms of content discovery, management, and viewing.

Best Kodi Alternatives to Use in 2023

List of Best Kodi Alternatives (Updated June 2023)

In our recent update to this article, we have added three new Kodi alternatives and we hope that you find a suitable pick from the list. For better coverage, we have included media centers like Kodi which bring local content management, online viewing, live TV, and also some client-server apps like Plex. With all that said, let’s move to the list, shall we?

1. Plex

Undoubtedly one of the best Kodi alternatives that you can get, Plex is loaded with a truckload of features. In fact, it is perfect for streaming locally stored digital media to multiple devices (e.g. smartphones, set-top boxes) over the network, thanks to its client-server architecture.

What’s more, since Plex’s media server module takes care of transcoding media for streaming to different devices, it can even run on low powered PCs and optimize bandwidth usage. Other notable features include availability on a diverse range of platforms, and a premium level subscription, which gives you even more features, such as movie trailers, and wireless syncing of photos to the media server.

Wanna know how Kodi and Plex compare with each other, in detail? Read here.

Platform Availability: Windows, Mac OS X, Linux (Desktop); iOS, Android, Windows Phone (Mobile), Android TV, Roku, Chromecast, Xbox, PlayStation (Others)

Download Plex

2. Emby

If you like the media streaming approach of Plex, but not the fact that it comprises proprietary software components, then the open-source Emby might just be the Kodi alternative for you. It’s also built on the client-server approach and makes streaming locally stored media to network-connected devices super easy. Emby also includes a bit of live TV functionality and lets you manage DVR recordings as well.

But more importantly, Emby comes with features like parental controls and web-based tools to edit metadata, search subtitles, and more. Emby can also transcode media files according to different target streaming devices, and supports streaming to DLNA compatible devices as well

Platform Availability: Windows, Mac OS X, Linux (Desktop); iOS, Android, Windows Phone (Mobile), Android TV, Roku, Chromecast, Xbox, Samsung Smart TV (Others)

Price: Free, Paid subscription starts at $4.99/month, for exclusive features.

Download Emby


OSMC (Open Source Media Center) is perhaps the best looking Kodi alternative that you can find among the score of media centers. It’s based on the same Kodi project but brings a new and modern user interface that is best suited for TVs and larger screens. Similar to Kodi, OSMC is also open-source and brings the identical tabbed-layout UI.

Not to mention, OSMC can play almost all the major media formats out there with a powerful built-in transcoder. Apart from online content, you can also use OSMC as your media center just like Kodi. You can manage your library of movies, TV shows, music, pictures and more.

Platform Availability: Windows, macOS, Raspberry Pi, Apple TV

Download OSMC

4. Jellyfin

Jellyfin is a new media center, but it has gained quite a reputation among the erstwhile Kodi users. The software is open-source and completely free, just like Kodi, but that is not its selling point. It allows you to manage your library of content locally, but at the same time, you can host a server and access your content over the web.

Having said all of that, the best part about Jellyfin is that it supports live TV and you can even record the stream using the built-in DVR feature. That’s just great and this feature makes Jellyfin a suitable Kodi alternative. All in all, Jellyfin is a media center built by the community and you must give it a try for its sheer number of features that can even dwarf Kodi.

Platform Availability: Windows, Linux, macOS, Web Browsers, Android, iOS, Xbox One

Price: Free

Download Jellyfin

5. Stremio

Stremio allows users to create a personal library of things they want to watch on the service. In case any particular movie is not available online and is exclusive to theaters, Stremio will also inform users. I really like the fact that the media player lets you stream movies directly from both – premium services such as Netflix as well as from free torrents portals, also showing the current number of seeders for a particular movie or TV show.

There is a slew of add-ons which enable access to a variety of content. Some of the available options include Popcorn Time, Vimeo, Twitch, etc. Besides displaying a healthy library of content, Stremio also notifies you when a new episode is added to the TV shows in your library. Overall, the highly interactive and modern interface, as well as automatic add-ons, make Stremio one of the best media players and Kodi alternatives.

Platform Availability: Windows, Mac, Linux, Android, iOS

Download Stremio

6. MediaPortal 2

MediaPortal 2 is an open-source media player that is primarily designed to work with – and improve the utility of – hardware such as a DVR, Blu-ray player, or a TV Tuner. Besides playing media from a connected player with greater ease, MediaPortal 2, also fetches information related to DVD movies and TV shows from IMDb automatically as well as saves this information so that it can be retrieved and readily displayed when you watch the same movie or listen to the same album again.

Apart from supporting a wide range of TV cards – including the analog ones like ATSC and DVB, as well as DVR and disc players, MediaPortal also organizes your image files. Like Kodi, MediaPortal supports a variety of plug-ins which will let you listen to online radio, check the weather, read the news, or use a mobile device to control the media center over Wi-Fi.

Platform Availability: Windows

Price: Free

Download MediaPortal 2

7. Universal Media Server

If no-fuss media streaming via DLNA-compatible devices is all that you want, Universal Media Server is going to serve you just fine. It has an extremely simple UI and can be set up fairly easily. It supports streaming to a huge variety of devices and can transcode most of the audio, video, and image formats without any configuration. Among its many features are bit-rate adjustment according to network speed, and a web interface to work even with devices that don’t have DLNA support.

To set up Universal Media Server, just add the location of the stored media in the Navigation Share settings. Now, open a web browser (or DLNA browser app) on any device connected to the same network which is used to host the server and enter the IP address of the hosting device followed by “:9001“.

The beauty of Universal Media Server is that it works on any device having Java support. To make sure it works properly on your Windows, Mac, or Linux PC, you might need to download Java on your machine.

Platform Availability: Windows, Mac, Linux

Download Universal Media Server

8. JRiver Media Center

If you want a media center for your computer and not for TVs or larger screens then JRiver is an apt alternative to Kodi. Similar to Kodi, it allows you to organize all your local library of movies, TV shows, music, images, and more. It can even collate information about all your content and neatly categorize them in a tabbed-layout.Unlike Kodi, you don’t have a huge collection of addons here but JRiver brings a handful of services and plugins for scheduling, downloading, and managing cloud-based media networks. As for streaming, JRiver offers built-in support for YouTube, RadioTunes, BBC, and some more radio channels.

The best part is that through its Cloudplay server, you can upload tons of lossless music that you can play using its client on any device. That’s really cool, right? Coming to video playback, it can play popular media formats like Blu-Ray, MPEG4, AVI, MOV, etc. Basically, you are covered on all fronts with JRiver Media Center.

Platform Availability: Windows, Linux, macOS

Price: Free Trial for 30 days, One-time purchase of $59.98

Download JRiver Media Center

Slow Streaming or Facing Buffering Issues? Here Are Some Tips

If the primary reason you are looking for Kodi alternative is slow streaming or intermittent buffering issues then you must look into how much video cache memory has been allotted to Kodi. Sometimes, users allocate too little memory for Kodi to work properly. To fix that, you can install Ares Wizard (Free) addon and customize the video cache size. As a rule of thumb, you should at least provide 500MB of RAM for no buffering on Kodi. You can follow our article on the best Kodi tips and tricks to find more solutions to Kodi issues.

Best Kodi Alternatives You Must Try in 2023

If you mostly rely on online content, we would recommend you to start with Stremio as it has many free video sources and then (maybe) and then move to Plex or Emby if you wish to enjoy more premium content. Alternatively, if you want to manage your TV and DVD/Blu-ray hardware, you can start by choosing OSMC while Jellyfin will come in handy for hosting files stored on a single system to be played on others.

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