SIM-free iPhone X now available for order on Apple.com

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Photo Credit/Source: Apple Website

If you’ve been waiting for the SIM-free version of Apple’s iPhone X, wait no longer! A SIM-free version is now available for order on Apple.com.

SIM-free iPhones are unlocked devices that allow users to buy the iPhone without a specific carrier and activate the devices with any compatibile carrier of choice. SIM-free versions work on both the GSM (ex: AT&T and T-Mobile) & CDMA networks (ex: Verizon & Sprint).

At launch, the iPhone X was only available for purchase and activation with a carrier like AT&T, T-Mobile, Sprint & Verizon. The carrier specific devices work on either the GSM or CDMA networks and are not interchangeable (you cannot buy an AT&T carrier specific iPhone X and use it with Verizon). The iPhone 8/8 Plus did offer a SIM-free version at launch.

Over the past few weeks, production and availability of the iPhone X appears to have ramped up bringing shipping & delivery times down from approx. 5-6 weeks to about one week.

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Photo Credit/Source: Apple Website

If you place an order for an iPhone X today (carrier specific or SIM-free), the current estimated delivery time is about a week. In-store pick-up is currently unavailable.

Thinking about getting an iPhone X on or before Christmas? The odds are looking pretty good!

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iHeartRadio Gives Listeners A Treat with iHeartRadio All Access Free Preview Weekend

This weekend, iHeartRadio will give all listeners access to their iHeartRadio All Access subscription service for FREE. 

The free preview weekend will begin Friday, October 27th and run through Sunday, October 29th. You can take advantage of iHeartRadio’s All Access free preview weekend using the iHeartRadio app or via iHeart.com.

iHeartRadio All Access gives listeners access to key features including:

  • Ability to search and play songs and albums instantly and on-demand
  • Create unlimited playlists or listen to iHeartRadio curated playlists
  • Full control over creating and managing your playlists 
  • Unlimited skips
  • Listen to music and playlists offline

An iHeartRadio All Access subscription currently costs $9.99 per month when purchased via the web & Google Play Store or $12.99 per month when purchased via the App Store.

In addition to All Access, iHeartRadio currently offers listeners a free tier and iHeartRadio Plus. iHeartRadio Plus costs $4.99 per month when purchased via the web & Google Play Store or $5.99 per month when purchased via the App Store. iHeartRadio Plus does not include offline listening, creating unlimited playlists and unlimited access to songs which are available with All Access.

Both iHeartRadio Plus and All Access offer a thirty (30) day free trial. For more information on iHeartRadio Plus and All Access, click here.

To learn more about iHeartRadio’s All Access free preview weekend, click here.

Traveling domestically in 2018? Make sure you have the right credentials!

By now, you’ve probably heard of the REAL ID Act. Passed by Congress in 2005, the REAL ID Act establishes “minimum security standards for state-issued driver’s licenses and identification cards and prohibits Federal agencies from accepting for official purposes licenses and identification cards from states that do not meet these standards,” according to the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS).

So what does this mean for domestic air travel in 2018?

Well, it means if you possess a state-issued driver’s license or identification card that is not REAL ID compliant and your state has not been granted an extension by DHS, you will not be allowed to use that form of identification for domestic air travel effective January 22, 2018. You will be required to present an alternative form of TSA Acceptable Identification.

Beginning October 1, 2020, all travelers will be required to present state-issued REAL ID compliant identification or another form of TSA Acceptable Identification for domestic air travel.

How do I know if my state is compliant?

To check if your state is REAL ID compliant, visit https://www.dhs.gov/real-id.

My state is listed as COMPLIANT. I should be okay, right?

If your state is listed as compliant, check your state’s Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) website or contact your state’s DMV office to make sure your current issued driver’s license or identification card is a REAL ID compliant card.

Your state’s DMV office will likely issue REAL ID compliant driver’s licenses and identification cards when your current card is renewed or replaced (which will require a trip to the DMV to present certain documents). As such, your current card may not be REAL ID compliant. If your current card is not REAL ID compliant, your state’s DMV website or office will be able to provide you with the information necessary to apply for a REAL ID compliant card.

My state is listed as EXTENSION. What does that mean?

If your state has been granted an extension by DHS, you will be able to continue using your current state-issued driver’s license or identification card for domestic air travel until October 10, 2018. Note that states must re-apply for extensions and DHS grants extensions only on an annual basis. Check your state’s DMV website or with your state’s DMV office for updates on when REAL ID compliant driver’s licenses and identification cards will become available.

My state is listed as UNDER REVIEW. What does that mean?

If your state is listed as UNDER REVIEW, it means DHS is reviewing your state’s request for an extension for extensions that expired on October 10, 2017. In the meantime, you can continue using your current state-issued driver’s license or identification card for domestic air travel until January 22, 2018. Check back on the DHS website and your state’s DMV website for further updates.

I have a state-issued Enhanced Driver’s License (EDL) or Enhanced Identification Card (ENDID). Will this be acceptable for domestic air travel or will I need to get a REAL ID compliant card?

A state-issued Enhanced Driver’s License or Enhanced Identification card are “designated as acceptable border-crossing documents by DHS under the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative,”  according to DHS and are considered TSA Acceptable Identification for domestic air travel.

Is it me or does REAL ID compliance seem complicated?

Unfortunately, it does seem complicated and there’s a lot of information (and at times confusing information) out there. The best thing to do is stay informed! If your state is not yet compliant, check back on the DHS website and your state’s DMV website for the latest updates. If your state is compliant, just make sure your state issued driver’s license or identification card is REAL ID compliant before you use it for domestic air travel. If you can’t get clear information from your state’s DMV website, contact or visit your state’s DMV office.

Additional Resources:

REAL ID Frequently Asked Questions for the Public

‘Tis the season . . . Z100 New York & iHeartRadio announce 2017 Jingle Ball line-up

A little over two decades ago, Z100 – New York’s #1 Hit Music Station started what has become one of iHeartRadio’s biggest music events of the year – Jingle Ball. The annual holiday music event features some of the biggest names in music performing their hit songs. Jingle Ball has gone from a Z100 New York annual holiday music event to an iHeartRadio national multi-city Jingle Ball tour. The 2017 Jingle Ball tour will take place across twelve cities.

Earlier this evening, Z100 New York announced this year’s line-up for Z100’s 2017 Jingle Ball presented by Capital One in NYC. The line-up includes: Taylor Swift, Ed Sheeran, The Chainsmokers, Sam Smith, Halsey, Fall Out Boy, Demi Lovato, Logic, Charlie Puth, Niall Horan, Camila Cabello, Liam Payne, Julia Michaels and Why Don’t We. Z100’s iHeartRadio sister stations part of the 2017 Jingle Ball Tour announced their respective line-ups as well. 

Z100’s 2017 Jingle Ball presented by Capital One will take place on Friday, December 8th at Madison Square Garden.

Capital One cardholder pre-sale kicks off tomorrow, October 11th at 10am ET and public on-sale kicks off on Monday, October 16th at 12pm ET.

For more information on Z100’s 2017 Jingle Ball, click here. For a complete list of all cities part of the iHeartRadio 2017 Jingle Ball Tour & their respective line-up as well as how to purchase Jingle Ball tickets, click here.

ThinkPad goes retro for 25th Anniversary

Lenovo is celebrating the 25th Anniversary of the ThinkPad with the release of a limited special edition retro-designed ThinkPad aptly named ThinkPad 25

The first ThinkPad was released back in 1992 by IBM. IBM ultimately sold their personal computer division, including the ThinkPad brand, to Lenovo in 2005. ThinkPads are popular business machines and are known for their performance & durability.

ThinkPad 25

The 25th Anniversary ThinkPad 25 is a fine blend of ThinkPad retro-design with modern technology. The ThinkPad 25 is a variation of Lenovo’s current ThinkPad T470 series.

The ThinkPad 25 comes in one configuration at the base price of $1,899. The ThinkPad 25 features include:

  • A 7th Generation Intel Core i7-7500U Processor (2.70GHz 4MB)
  • Windows 10 Pro 64-bit OS
  • 14.0″ FHD PPS AntiGlare Multitouch LED (1920×1080) Display with Integrated Camera
  • 16.0GB DDR4 SODIMM (2133MHz) RAM
  • 512GB PCIe SSD
  • NVIDIA GeForce GT 940MX Graphics Card with 2GB RAM
  • Bluetooth Version 4.1
  • 3 cell Li-Ion (Fixed) + 3 cell Li-Ion (Removable) Batteries
  • Fingerprint Reader
  • 7-row Classic Backlit English Keyboard with Blue Enter key
  • Intel Wireless-AC 8265 (2×2)
  • 3 x USB 3.0, 1 x USB-C with Thunderbolt 3, 1 x 3.5 mm Combo Audio Jack, 1 x HDMI, 1 x RJ-45 Gigabit Ethernet, 4-in-1 Card Reader (SD, MMC, SDHC, SDXC)
  • Special Edition ThinkPad 25 logo and special ThinkPad 25 packaging

The 25th Anniversary ThinkPad 25 is on sale now. As this is a special anniversary edition ThinkPad, the ThinkPad 25 will be available for a limited time and in limited quantities. 

For more information, visit Lenovo’s website – http://www.lenovo.com.

Apple releases macOS High Sierra Supplemental Update; patches security flaws

Apple released a macOS High Sierra Supplemental Update today which “includes improvements to the stability, reliability and security of your Mac,” according to the software update release notes.

The release notes further state that the update:

  • Improves installer robustness
  • Fixes a cursor graphic bug when using Adobe InDesign
  • Resolves an issue where e-mail messages couldn’t be deleted from Yahoo accounts in Mail

macOS High Sierra Supplemental Update

The supplemental update also patches two significant security flaws recently identified in macOS High Sierra.

macOS High Sierra 10.13 Supplemental Update

The first security flaw involves Disk Utility and APFS encrypted volumes where a password could be improperly stored as the hint if a hint was setup in Disk Utility during the creation of an APFS encrypted volume.

Apple’s article regarding the security content of macOS High Sierra Supplemental Update states “If a hint was set in Disk Utility when creating an APFS encrypted volume, the password was stored as the hint.”

The second flaw could allow hackers to use malicious third-party applications to extract keychain passwords. According to the same article “A method existed for applications to bypass the keychain access prompt with a synthetic click.”

Apple recommends all macOS High Sierra users install the macOS High Sierra Supplemental Update. Users can download and install the free update by going to the App Store, selecting “Updates” and then clicking on “Update” next to the macOS High Sierra 10.13 Supplemental Update.

Apple releases watchOS 4.0.1; addresses watchOS 4 LTE/Wi-Fi connectivity bug

Even before Apple Watch Series 3 with LTE hit the shelves, Apple acknowledged an issue with the new LTE devices.

In a statement to The Verge, Apple stated:

“We have discovered that when Apple Watch Series 3 joins unauthenticated Wi-Fi networks without connectivity, it may at times prevent the watch from using cellular. We are investigating a fix for a future software release.” 

If you are experiencing this issue with your Apple Watch Series 3 with LTE and are awaiting a fix or you decided to hold off on buying an Apple Watch Series 3 with LTE until the bug was fixed, you don’t need to wait any longer!

Apple released watchOS 4.0.1 today which addresses this bug.

For instructions on how to update your watchOS, refer to the Update your Apple Watch support article from Apple.