Bits and Bytes - December 2021 Edition

Robert Cerff / 06-01-2022 / News & Tips

YouTube Gives Dislikes the Thumbs Down

If you’ve noticed more YouTube comments saying “Dislike”, well, here’s why.

In a bid to create a more inclusive environment, YouTube have removed the public dislikes count to protect content creators from being targeted and bullied online.

Uploaders will still be able to check their Like vs Dislike count privately, but opportunity for mass harassment will be minimised.

What You Tolkien About?

Ever wanted to learn the ancient languages of Elvish and Dwarven? With the help of designer Matt3o and their Tolkien keycaps for your keyboard, now you can!

The languages were created by Lord of the Rings author J.R.R Tolkien in the 1950s and took on a life of their own. The newly designed keycaps are available for preorder now and lets you transform your boring ol’ Qwerty keyboards into a cooler keyboard to rule them all.

Bank While You Shop

The Shoprite Group has stepped into the banking arena. The company recently launched a bank account component to its rewards card “Xtra Savings” that will allow shoppers to bank through a Money Market Account. The system will allow a daily limit of R5 000 each for withdrawals, cash deposits and transfers but bank balances cannot go over the R25 000 mark.

Google Folds on Its New Pixel Smartphone Plans

Google has halted their plans on the long-awaited Google Pixel Fold.

The company hasn’t stated why they put the device on the backburner, but it seems it could be due to the rising costs of parts.

The smartphone was set to meld together all the cool camera specs of the Pixel 5 with foldable technology, but only time will tell if this one will ever unfold again.  

Ed Sheeran Caught ‘Em All

Everyone’s favourite redheaded singer recently teamed up with Pokémon Go! for an in-game concert celebrating the launch of the water-type Pokémon.

Sheeran performed some of his most popular hits including tracks from his new album and (shockingly) revealed that his favourite Pokémon isn’t Pikachu like everyone else, but Squirtle!

TECH NEWS

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The Most Popular Apple iPhones In the Past 6 Months Will Surprise You

Let's rewind the clock a bit. It's 2019, and you've just snagged the latest iPhone 11, feeling like you're holding the future in your hands. Fast forward to 2021, and boom! The iPhone 13 drops, and you're already eyeing it because, let's face it, Apple understood the assignment and delivered all the upgrades you hoped to see.But wait, we’re back in 2024 and these older iPhones are once again stealing the spotlight, outshining even the iPhone 14 and iPhone 15. What’s going on?!Drinking from the Fountain of YouthWhile some phones age like milk left out in the sun, the iPhone 11 and 13? They're ageing like fine wine. These devices don't feel outdated; they're still serving up snappy, lightning-fast performance, giving even the latest flagships a run for their money.Snapping Power that Steals the ShowRemember when the iPhone 11 and iPhone 13 hit the scene with their impeccable camera quality? They practically redefined smartphone photography, capturing breath-taking shots that left rivals rethinking everything. And now? People are waking up to the fact that you don't need to break the bank for stunning snaps, making these iPhones the go-to choice for photo enthusiasts everywhere.Unplugged & UnstoppableWho doesn't love a phone that can go the distance? The iPhone 11 and 13 are true champions when it comes to battery life, giving you juice for a full day without needing to scramble for a charger when midday arrives. And let's not forget the cherry on top—wireless charging support. It's the epitome of convenience, whether you're team MagSafe with the iPhone 13 or rocking Qi wireless charging with the iPhone 11.Hits the Sweet SpotThese devices hit the sweet spot feature-wise, blending innovation with practicality in a perfect tech cocktail. From the vibrant Liquid Retina HD display and solid build of the iPhone 11 to the Super Retina XDR display, 5G connectivity, and aluminium edges of the iPhone 13, they had it all from the get-go. And guess what? These features still hold their ground against the shiny new models.Overtaking the BestWith Apple's promise of up to seven years of software support, the iPhone 11 and 13 are in it for the long haul. It's no wonder they're not only competing with but overtaking these newer models. Not everyone needs the newest when trusty iPhones still have plenty of life left in them.An Irresistible DealLet's be real, who can say no to a bargain? The iPhone 13 and 11 are more affordable than ever before, offering top-notch performance without burning a hole in your pocket. You’re getting almost flagship-level devices at a fraction of the cost.Counter-Culture & the FOMO-Free ZoneFinally, in a world where most people are chasing the latest phone, something is refreshing about sticking with the tried-and-true iPhone 11 or 13. It feels counter-culture, cool, and liberating knowing you’re not affected by FOMO or trying to keep up with trends. And, saving a pretty penny while you do.So, there you have it. The iPhone 11 and 13 may not be the latest, but they're still among the greatest, stealing hearts and turning heads everywhere. And honestly, that's the kind of Apple everyone wants to take a bite out of.

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Why A 2-for-1 Deal Is The Best Deal

We all love a good deal.But how about two?Our most popular 2-for-1 smartphone deals are here. But how do they work and is it worth your cash investment?Let's delve into the ins and outs of a 2-for-1 contract deal and why you should consider one.What's the Deal? As the name suggests, a 2-for-1 deal offers you two devices. One comes with contract benefits such as airtime and data while the other can be used as a top-up device.Even though the second phone doesn't have the data or airtime benefits of the first, it's a good option for someone who cannot afford the monthly constraints of a contract.Why Consider a 2-for-1 deal?Economical Option 2-for-1 deals are the smart way to go for anyone needing more than one device. If you are planning on keeping both smartphones for yourself, you are scoring two phones for the price of one. Alternatively, if you want to share the devices, you can split the costs with a friend or family member. The Latest DevicesGet all the amazing features you are looking for in one smartphone x 2!Not only are you saving with a 2-for-1 deal, but you’re also getting access to the latest specs. This is great if it’s been a while since you last upgraded because now you can get your hands on the latest Samsung or Huawei device at a discounted price!Starter Phone for Your Kids:If you have kids, a new cellphone is the perfect motivation for good grades. And if this is their first smartphone you probably don’t want to fork out a fortune on it. By giving them the extra phone, you save on contract costs (and they can either hotspot off you or use the at-home Wi-Fi). This is also a great way to introduce your kids to their first smartphone in a controlled way, keeping them safe and connected.Work-life Balance Achieved:Getting a 2-for-1 deal is a great way to avoid work following you home every evening. With a second phone, you can keep work and personal communication separate without any additional costs.Whether you are looking to upgrade your device, want to get a gift for someone, give your kids access to their first cellphone, or you just want the comfort of having an extra smartphone around for convenience, a 2-for-1 deal is ideal.Ready to get double the devices at a fraction of the cost? Check out our most in-demand 2-for-1 smartphone deals and upgrade your tech game now!

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The New OnePlus Watch 2

The New OnePlus Watch 2: Stylish Innovation or One Less Thing You Need?Launched in February 2024, the OnePlus Watch 2 is the latest offering from OnePlus and is particularly appealing to fitness enthusiasts and those who value a large, clear screen that blends style and substance, a long battery life, a vibrant display, and customisable buttons. However, there are several shortcomings, which may not make it the right fit for everyone.Here are the pros and cons to help you decide if it's a must-have addition to your tech collection.The Four Pros Long Battery Life: The biggest plus of The OnePlus Watch 2 is its battery life, making it the perfect companion for those always on the go, and who don't want the hassle of frequent charging. The battery life of a One Plus Watch 2 can last for days on a single charge - up to 100 hours in smart mode, 48 hours with heavy usage, and an astonishing 12 days in power-saving mode. It also is a breeze to charge, going from 29% to 85% in just 20 minutes with a standard 5-watt power adapter.Customisable buttons: The OnePlus Watch 2 also offers great flexibility, with two customisable buttons on the side of the watch: a top button that functions as a home key, and a bottom button that be programmed for shortcuts, like the Apple Watch Ultra's Action key, making navigation easy and intuitive.Stunning Display: The OnePlus Watch 2 features a stainless-steel casing that exudes elegance, especially when paired with the grey band. The colourful AMOLED sapphire crystal display is not only vibrant and sharp but also large enough to comfortably view health graphs and workout maps. This is great for fitness enthusiasts who need clear and detailed displays of their activity whilst having a sleek device that stands out stylishly on the wrist.Wear OS 4 Platform: Running on Google's Wear OS 4 and the integration with the Google Play Store ensures you have a wide selection of third-party apps at your fingertips, including Google Wallet, Google Maps, YouTube Music, and Google Assistant.The Three Cons:Limited Size Options: Unlike other smartwatches, the OnePlus Watch 2 comes in only one size, which might not suit everyone. While the watch has a premium look, it is on the thicker side and occupies almost the entire width of the wrist. This larger-than-average size could be cumbersome and uncomfortable for those with smaller wrists, especially when worn during the night for sleep tracking.Missing Health Features: Despite its many strengths, the OnePlus Watch 2 lacks some essential health-tracking features such as fall detection, ECG monitoring, and period tracking. These omissions could be a deal-breaker for users seeking a comprehensive health monitoring offering. It also lacks the big-picture analysis that ties together various health metrics to provide a holistic view of your wellness. Competitors like Garmin and Fitbit offer more detailed insights that could be missed here.Shorter Software Support: The OnePlus only guarantees two years of software support, which is shorter than the timelines offered by competitors like Apple, Google, and Samsung. This could impact the long-term usability of the watch.So, is it worth it?Opting for the OnePlus Watch 2 will depend on your specific needs and priorities. If long battery life is essential and you enjoy the Google ecosystem, this could be a great option, especially given its affordable price.However, if comprehensive health tracking and longer software support are more important to you, consider boosting your budget and investing in alternatives like a Garmin or Galaxy smartwatch.

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