Rick Broida

Four Mobile Chargers That Do More than Charge Your Phone

Mobile chargers that do more
Written By:Author Rick BroidaRick Broida

Did you ever notice that on “Star Trek,” Kirk and the gang never had to worry about a dead battery in their tricorders and communicators? That’s because they lived in the 23rd frickin’ century, when battery technology was good for more than a single day’s worth of missions. Needless to say, this ain’t the 23rd […]

Five Ways to Ease the Transition from Laptop to Tablet

Tablet with keyboard
Written By:Author Rick BroidaRick Broida

So you’ve decided to make the big move, to ditch the pokey old laptop that takes half an hour to boot, contracts a new virus every other day, and barely lasts through lunch before running back to its charger. Yeah, you might say I’m feeling a little anti-laptop these days. Or at least anti-Windows, because I’m fed […]

Is It Time to Replace Your Router? (Psst: Probably)

Asus router
Written By:Author Rick BroidaRick Broida

Time for a home-network health check. Think about it: Your router – the gizmo that slings Wi-Fi to all corners of your domicile – provides internet access for everything from laptops, tablets, and smartphones to Chromecasts, Roku boxes, game consoles, Smart TVs, smart thermostats, smart door locks, and pretty much anything else with “smart” in its name. […]

Should You Wait for Windows 10 to Buy a New PC?

Windows 10 preview
Written By:Author Rick BroidaRick Broida

It’s official (again): Windows 10 is coming. When? Microsoft hasn’t announced a firm date, but I’ll bet you a pony the new operating system will hit the streets in early fall, most likely September or October. This raises some important questions: If you’re in the market for a new PC, should you hold off? If […]

The Easiest Fix for Your Dumb Passwords

Dashlane password changer
Written By:Author Rick BroidaRick Broida

Admit it: You’re terrible at password management. It’s okay, I was the same way. But, praise be to coders, I have found salvation: a password manager that’s smarter than I am. See, as you’re well aware, ours is a a password-powered planet. You need one for everything nowadays: banking, shopping, Facebooking, e-mail, Netflix, and on […]

A $1,100 Sony Walkman? Sure, I’ll Take Two!

Sony Walkman NWZ-ZX2
Written By:Author Rick BroidaRick Broida

Kids, you won’t remember this, but once upon a time the marketing tagline “It’s a Sony” was synonymous with “quality audio gear.” Like, you went to the store to buy a receiver or tape player and spent a little extra on the Sony because that was the good stuff. Oh, how times have changed. These […]

Get a 12-month Xbox Music subscription for $49.90

Xbox Music
Written By:Author Rick BroidaRick Broida

Last month I explained why I broke down and finally subscribed to a music service. In a nutshell: All the music of the world for a reasonable monthly fee, minus the increasing hassles of having to manage my own music library. Of course, most of the mainstream services — your Spotifys, your Rhapsodys, your Beats […]

The Microsoft Giveaway You Cannot Miss

Microsoft-holiday-freebies-750x373
Written By:Author Rick BroidaRick Broida

“Microsoft” and “free” in the same sentence? As a general rule, not so much. So it was with a mix of surprise, skepticism, disbelief, and, ultimately, joy that I discovered this: Microsoft is giving away 100 MP3 albums. Let me clarify that a bit. Microsoft is giving away complete albums, new and older pop music […]

The Five Best Tech Products of 2014… and the One Worst

BlueSync SPB side
Written By:Author Rick BroidaRick Broida

Is it December already? That can mean only one thing: a non-stop stream of “Best of 2014” lists. Oh, come on, you know you love ’em. I certainly do. This is my favorite time of year, and not just because I get a few days off. As a full-time tech junkie, it’s always fun to look […]

Why I Broke Down and Finally Subscribed to a Music Service

Beats Music
Written By:Author Rick BroidaRick Broida

I hate subscriptions. Paying a monthly fee for anything feels like a rip-off to me, a money pit from which there is no escape. Granted, I’ve been a cable subscriber for, well, roughly as long as cable has existed. Same goes for my cell phone, though you won’t catch me getting locked into another two-year […]

Five Insanely Good Gadget Deals That Feel Like Black Friday

Black Friday collage
Written By:Author Rick BroidaRick Broida

Is it Black Friday already? Let’s see, no, the calendar says Tuesday. So why the heck am I discovering so many amazing deals on gadgets and gear? Don’t know, don’t care. The reality is you’re about to save big on everything from laptops to tablets to smartwatches, and maybe get a serious chunk of your holiday […]

Which Stick Streams Best? The War for Your TV Heats Up

Chromecast-Fire TV Stick-Roku
Written By:Author Rick BroidaRick Broida

So many streaming sticks, so few HDMI ports. I’m referring, of course, to the new breed of media-streaming “boxes” that deliver Amazon Instant Video, Hulu, Netflix, and other TV-junkie goodness to your big screen. Gone is the set-top appliance; now you plug something akin to an oversize flash drive directly into an HDMI port — […]

The Tech Gear I’d Buy if Money Was No Object

Phantom 2 Vision Plus
Written By:Author Rick BroidaRick Broida

We’ve all had dreams of winning the lottery, inheriting a fortune from some uncle we never knew existed, or finding a giant duffel bag of cash in a deserted plane-wreck in the woods. (No, wait, that’s the plot of “A Simple Plan.” And it didn’t turn out so great. For the characters, I mean. But […]

Amazon’s Fire TV Stick is the Streaming Deal of the Year

Amazon Fire TV Stick
Written By:Author Rick BroidaRick Broida

Amazon’s Fire TV? Meh. A $99 Roku competitor that hasn’t exactly set the world on… well, you know. Amazon’s just-announced Fire TV Stick? Zowie! Ah-OOH-ga! Holy insane deals, Batman! Pre-order between now and 6 a.m. (PT), Oct. 29, and you can get it for just $19. Okay, big fat asterisk: That price is available only […]

Set Up a ‘Video-Selfie’ Studio on the Cheap

Video studio
Written By:Author Rick BroidaRick Broida

Recently I was hired to record some how-to videos about computer security, which made me feel good because I’ve been giving away that advice to friends and family for years. (No more free lunch for you, people I love!) Just one problem: The videos needed to look good. I couldn’t just hold my smartphone at arm’s length […]

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