Wednesday, April 26, 2017

So you want to learn how to hack?

The modern job landscape is a strange thing.

People with degrees in things like engineering and law are having a hard time finding jobs, but the renegade interests are becoming increasingly valuable.

Billionaire investor of Shark Tank fame Mark Cuban has even said that he believes liberal arts degrees are on track to become more valuable than technical degrees over the next 10 years.

However there’s one field that still has a long lifespan before it’s taken over by the rise of automation: security.

Sure, maybe we’re heading to a technological Willy Wonka wonderland of simultaneous awesomeness and horrifying levels of unemployment, but someone will always have to make sure that that tech stays secure. And whose job is that?


The best security experts in the world are the people who know exactly how to exploit modern systems and take advantage of vulnerabilities.

The good news is that the entry level for this field is crazy low, if you know where to look.

The increasing value of this skillset has led online ethical hacking instructors to jack their prices up to astronomical prices, some even on par with university tuition.

However, if you keep your ear to the ground, you can occasionally find price drops from quality instructors. We’re seeing one of these going on right now over at Tech Deals

For the next few days, you can get the Ethical Hacking Bootcamp is going for just $45. That’s $1 per hour of training that the course offers.

Normally this is one of those hyper-pricey courses, so we’re calling this one a pretty slick deal. Click the button below if you want to read more about what this course has to offer.

Learn More

Is this deal not quite right for you? Head over to the AAPICKS HUB for more savings you’re going to love! For notifications of offers and price drops, sign up for our Deal Alerts newsletter.

Moto X Pure Edition Nougat update begins its rollout

A month ago, Motorola sent out soak test invites in the US for the Moto X Pure Edition update to Android 7.0 Nougat. Now, it looks like the company is rolling out that update to all owners of the 2015 phone.

Motorola Moto X Pure Edition (Moto X Style) review

November 18, 2015

Motorola has posted a new Nougat support page for Moto X Pure Edition owners to check out, and it’s actually quite extensive. While there’s nothing listed that’s new or unique with this update, it does give owners of the phone a good summary of all of the major features that are included with Nougat. That includes new additions like multi-window support for apps, a revamp of the Settings interface, and improvements to its Doze mode.

The support page does not offer any information on the update’s file download size, but we would expect that it will be pretty large, so Moto X Pure Edition owners will likely have to use a Wi-Fi connection to download it. Also, it may take a few days for the update to reach all of the phones. Keep in mind that this is the name of the phone in the US; in other parts of the world, it’s referred to as the Moto X Style.

If you own the Moto X Pure Edition, have you checked to see if the Nougat update is available on your device? If so, let us know your experience in the comments!

Deal: Moto G4 Play now available for $99 at B&H ($50 off)

We have just come across a great deal for those of you looking for an affordable smartphone. B&H is currently selling the Moto G4 Play for $99, which is $50 off its normal retail price. The device is unlocked and can be yours in either the black or white color option.

The Moto G4 Play is a budget device, meaning its specs won’t blow your socks off (though they are decent for this price point). It sports a 5-inch 720p display and is powered by the Snapdragon 410 chipset. It has 2 GB of RAM and 16 GB of storage, which you can expand for an additional 256 GB with the help of a microSD card.

Moto G4 Play Review

September 15, 2016

You’ll find an 8 MP main camera on the back with an f/2.2 aperture and LED flash, while the front-facing selfie snapper has a 5 MP sensor. The smartphone also has a 2,800 mAh battery and runs Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow.

The Moto G4 Play is a great device for those of you who don’t want to spend a small fortune on a smartphone. To get it, visit B&H’s website by clicking the button below.

The retailer hasn’t mentioned how long this deal will last. It won’t be available forever, so it’s probably best to place your order sooner rather than later if you want to secure the $50 discount.

How to change display resolution on the Samsung Galaxy S8

Is your mind playing tricks on you, or is that brand-spanking new Samsung Galaxy S8 (or Galaxy S8 Plus) screen look like it came straight out of 2013? It certainly looks like it did, as Samsung has decided to set the default resolution to FHD+ (2220 x 1080) and not the native QHD+ (2960 x 1440).

The reason? We are not exactly sure, but it must have something to do with battery life and/or performance. What we do know is you must fix this issue right away and take full advantage of that gorgeous display. How do you do this? It’s a simple process. Let’s walk you through it.

How to change the display resolution

  1. Go to Settings.

  2. Select Display.

  3. Tap on Screen resolution.

  4. Move the blue dot over to WQHD+ (2960×1440).

13 Nintendo Switch Problems & Fixes

Whether you’re at home or on the go, Nintendo Switch problems can ruin your gaming experience. That’s why it’s important to be aware of them.

The arrival of Nintendo Switch wasn’t just exciting because it’s something new in gaming. There’s much more going on than that. The system was born out of Nintendo’s desire to do right by the concepts of the Nintendo Wii U while pivoting to its strength in the mobile gaming console realm. The Nintendo Switch is both a living room console and a handheld console.

Nintendo Switch games have reached digits since launch, and those expected Nintendo Switch problems have surfaced. One problem will have users wishing they purchased Nintendo Switch screen protectors. There’s also what’s fairly described as the Nintendo Switch problems we expected.

As with any console release, Nintendo Switch problems have surfaced.

Read: Nintendo Switch Release Date & Price: What it Is and What it Isn’t

Here are the Nintendo Switch problems we’re tracking now. When possible, we’ve included fixes for the issues sourced directly from the community or Nintendo’s own support channels. We’ll continue to update this breakdown going forward.

Nintendo Switch Problems

  1. Left Joy-Con Signal Loss

  2. Can’t Add USB Storage

  3. Nintendo Switch 2.0 Software

  4. Missing Nintendo Switch Voice-Chat

  5. Joy-Con Grip Won’t Charge Joy-Cons

  6. No Apps for Nintendo Switch

  7. Colored Screens when Waking Nintendo Switch

  8. Can’t Transfer Nintendo Switch Saves

  9. Unlocking Online By Adding a Nintendo Account

  10. Nintendo Switch Can Scratch Easily

  11. Dead Nintendo Switch Pixels

  12. Nintendo Switch Wi-Fi Issues

  13. Nintendo Switch Warping

Nintendo Switch Problems: Left Joy-Con Signal Loss (Updated)

One of the issues uncovered by early reviewers was slightly troubling. The Nintendo Switch comes with two Joy-Cons, one made to fit onto its left side and another made to fit onto its right side. It’s the left that’s reportedly giving users issues.

Almost every reviewer has complained of the left Joy-Con periodically losing a signal when attached to the Joy-Con Grip that Nintendo includes with the hardware. Why this is happening is unclear, but the controller will reconnect after a few seconds. This doesn’t happen when connected directly to the Nintendo Switch. You’ll need to manually sync it back to the console from the settings.

Read: How to Set Up Nintendo Switch

Update: An enterprising YouTube video creator has posted a way to fix the left Joy-Con’s reception issues. The bad news is that his fix involves having to make modifications inside the controller, meaning Nintendo may be forced to issue a recall.

Nintendo Switch Problems: Can’t Add Storage Using USB 3.0 Port on Dock

The Nintendo Switch’s television dock includes a single USB 3.0 port, but don’t assume you’ll be using it to add storage to the console like you can with the Xbox One and Sony’s PS4. The console’s software doesn’t support external storage through USB. If you want to add more storage, you’ll need to pick up a MicroSD card. A slot for adding MicroSD storage is located underneath the kickstand.

Read: How to Find the Nintendo Switch in Stock

Nintendo Switch Problems: Nintendo Switch 2.0 Software Update

When you get your Nintendo Switch, it won’t be in working order. Games will play fine, but the console’s social systems and eShop won’t be there. You’ll need to download the Nintendo Switch software update that’s making the rounds right now.

Do not tether your Nintendo Switch to your Android powered smartphone or iPhone to download this software update. Instead, use your home internet connection. You don’t want to go gobbling up a month’s allotment of data by accident.

Nintendo Switch Problems: Missing Voice-Chat & Lobbies

It’s very clear that Nintendo had to make some big compromises to meet its deadline for the Nintendo Switch release. At least, it’s hard not to look at the console’s multiplayer functionality and not come away with that impression.

Free multiplayer goes live in March, but the wider service that’ll add things that gamers have become accustomed to on Xbox One and PS4, things like voice-chat and lobbies, won’t be live until later this year. There’ll be a Nintendo Switch companion app for smartphones that assists with some of the online experience too. When this service does arrive, Nintendo will begin charging for all online multiplayer, the company says. Discounts for digital games downloaded through the eShop will also be included in the subscription.

Nintendo Switch Problems: Joy-Con Grip Won’t Charge Joy-Cons

This is more of a misunderstanding than a problem with the system. Nintendo includes a Joy-Con Grip with every system. Lots of marketing materials show the Joy-Con Grip charging the Joy-Cons too. Problem is that the Grip featured in those materials isn’t the same as the one included in the box at no addition charge.

Unless you’ve purchased the Joy-Con Grip that includes charging, you’ll need to dock your Joy-Cons to the side of your Nintendo Switch when they need charging.

Nintendo Switch Problems: No Apps for Nintendo Switch (Update)

Missing Nintendo Switch apps is another misunderstanding. Nintendo has said publicly that it aimed to first create a great video game console. That’s why the software on the Nintendo Switch is so laser-focused on that task.
Update: Nintendo’s Reggie Fils-Aime says that the console doesn’t have Netflix and Hulu because they were not “differentiators”. According to him, they will make an appearance sometime in the future.

Read: Netflix Coming to Nintendo Switch, but when?

Nintendo Switch Problems: Orange, Black and Blue Screens When Waking

Members of the Nintendo Switch community on Reddit report getting orange, black or blue screens when trying to wake their Nintendo Switch consoles from sleep. Why this is happening remains unclear. Holding down the console’s power button and waiting for the display to turn black solves the issue.

Nintendo Switch Problems: No Way to Transfer Saves

It’s not your imagination, the Nintendo Switch doesn’t allow you to move games or game saves to external storage. Right now, that means that if you damage your system, you will need to start your games all over. “At this time, it is not possible to transfer save data from one Nintendo Switch system to another,” Nintendo told Polygon.

Nintendo Switch Problems: Missing Online Functionality & Nintendo Accounts

To get the most of your Nintendo Switch, you’ll need what’s called a Nintendo Account. This account can be linked to the local account you may have already created for your console.

After pressing the Home button, head to the Systems Settings area. Then select Users. Select the profile you’d like to link and choose Link Nintendo Account.
Regardless of the reason, the Nintendo Switch does not have apps available for download. That means you can’t watch Netflix or Hulu Plus. There’s a web app that allows you to connect to Wi-Fi hotspots, but that’s all. Currently, there aren’t any publicly announced plans to add apps to the Nintendo Switch.

Nintendo Switch Problems: Scratches & Skins

This isn’t  good news for anyone that plans on using the Nintendo Switch dock often. According to website Glixel, the Nintendo Switch’s touchscreen display can get scratched easily when removing it from the dock. To prevent this, it’s a very good idea to invest in Nintendo Switch screen protectors.

Additionally, Dbrand was forced to cancel all of its Nintendo Switch skins after it realized that the console’s finish doesn’t hold up well to glue. You’ll want to stick with Nintendo Switch cases and covers and avoid skins. Skinit maintains that its products use an adhesive that doesn’t harm the console’s finish.

Nintendo Switch Problems: Dead Pixels on the Screen

A number of Nintendo Switch users are reporting that their console came with dead pixels. Dead pixels are tiny areas on the display that won’t change colors. We don’t know the scope of the issue right now. The problem is big enough that Nintendo has added an area for it to its FAQ section at

“Small numbers of stuck or dead pixels are a characteristic of LCD screens. These are normal and should not be considered a defect,” the entry reads. If you have this issue, try returning your Nintendo Switch for another.

Nintendo Switch Problems: Bad Wi-Fi

Some users are reporting that their Nintendo Switch consoles can’t maintain a solid Wi-Fi connection, even when they are very close to the source of the Wi-Fi. Nintendo hasn’t posted any guidance on this issue, but it’s a good idea to return your console if it’s having this problem. It seems unlikely that a software update would be able to fix this issue.

The Nintendo Switch is now available for purchase for $299.99. That price doesn’t include a game but does include a Joy-Con Grip, Dock, 2 Joy-Cons, wrist straps, an HDMI cable and a USB Type-C power cable.

Nintendo Switch Problems: Warping Issue

At least one Nintendo Switch Reddit community member reports that their console has warped because of use. Community member _NSR posted a picture of their Nintendo Switch along with the cover of an Apple iPad for reference.  In the picture, you can clearly see where the plastic enclosure of the console has warped over time.

nintendo switch wapring

Pictures of a warped Nintendo Switch shared with the Nintendo Switch Reddit Community.

The two ends that hold the Joy-Cons in place or a few degrees off where they should be. It’s an issue Gotta Be Mobile has noticed in its own Nintendo Switch console. Nintendo hasn’t said anything about the issue publically.

It’s best to avoid using the dock if you begin to notice any warping. Nintendo should be willing to replace consoles with the issue too.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

In terms of ‘bang for your buck,’ this is the best way we’ve seen to learn coding

At AAPicks, we see a lot of coding courses. Many of our readers are interested in learning how to make their own apps, games, and other software, so we try to keep an eye out for the best coding resources available.

Most of the coding course package that we see suck. But this one does not.

Frankly, this is the best we’ve seen so far.

In terms of the quality of resources that you’re getting for the price you pay, the Ultimate Learn to Code bundle for 2017 is pretty damn amazing. It’s got courses covering Ruby, Javascript, Python, HTML, SQL, app creation, monetization, and more.

All 10 courses are provided by reputable brands and hosted by established online course instructors.

Although most of these courses run in the $200 range individually, you can grab all 10 in a bundle for $49 during the next week as part of a promotional event.

Frankly, this offer’s value is pretty hard to exaggerate. We’ll give you the overview here, but you’ll want to scroll down and click the button for the individual details on each course.

Frankly, this is the best we’ve seen so far.

2017 Learn To Code Bundle in a Glance:

To read more about the specifics of these courses, click the button below.

Is this deal not quite right for you? Head over to the AAPICKS HUB for more savings you’re going to love! For notifications of offers and price drops, sign up for our Deal Alerts newsletter.

How to Fix Poor Samsung Galaxy S7 Nougat Performance

Some Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge users are complaining about poor performance after installing Android Nougat.

The Samsung Galaxy S7 Nougat update is an exciting update but as the Galaxy S7 Nougat release grows we’re starting to see users complain about a variety of Galaxy S7 Android Nougat problems.

Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge users in the United States and other countries around the world are running into pesky bugs and frustrating performance issues after installing the Android 7.0 Nougat update on their device.

Abnormal battery drain and broken connectivity are part of the problem but some Galaxy S7 users are noticing lag, lockups and freezes after installing Android Nougat.

Fixing performance issues can be a bit tricky but there are a few things to try before you get in contact with Samsung or your carrier.

Today we want to outline some ways to improve Galaxy S7 Nougat performance on your Galaxy S7 or Galaxy S7 Edge.

Some of these tips require a lot of effort. Others simply require you to start using some of the features Samsung delivered with its Android Nougat update.

How to Fix Galaxy S7 Battery Life After Nougat

Let’s start with battery life and connectivity issues.

Some Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge users are noticing bad battery life after installing Android Nougat. Android 7.0 Nougat isn’t supposed to harm the device’s battery life. In fact, with features like Doze On-The-Go on board, it’s supposed to help it.

If you start noticing bad Galaxy S7 Nougat battery life, don’t panic. There’s a very good chance you’ll be able to fix the problem yourself.

If you just installed Nougat on your Galaxy S7, give it a couple of days. Sometimes it takes two or three days for new software to even out. If you’ve had Nougat on your device for a while now, you’ll need to take action.

We’ve put together a long list of strategies to obtain better battery life on the Galaxy S7 and it’s worth a look if you don’t know what to do.

Use Download Booster

Noticing slower download speeds after installing Android 7.0 Nougat on your Galaxy S7? Try Download Booster.

When enabled, Download Booster will download files larger than 30MB using Wi-Fi and cellular connectivity at the same time. If your Wi-Fi signal is strong, you’ll see blazing fast download speeds.

To enable Download Booster, go to Connections > More connection settings > Download booster and enable it. Just remember to use this sparingly because it could eat up a lot of your data plan.

Fix Poor Connectivity

If your Galaxy S7’s connections are struggling with Nougat on board, take a look at our list of fixes for GPS, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth problems.

Restart Your Phone

If you’re noticing UI lag or freezes, and you haven’t restarted your Galaxy S7 or Galaxy S7 Edge in a while, try a simple restart. Power it down and then power it up again. Your phone might feel like new.

Cleanup Your Galaxy S7

Use Nougat’s arrival as an opportunity to cleanup your Samsung Galaxy S7’s files and data.

If you’ve owned your Galaxy S7 for a year, there’s a good chance you’ve accumulated tons of stuff on your phone. Some of you might even be nearing the threshold of your device’s internal storage.

Even if you aren’t, it would be a good idea to get rid of files, apps and anything else you no longer need on your device.

A little cleanup could go a long way toward improving your Galaxy S7 Nougat performance.

Disable Widgets

Widgets are extremely useful but they can also eat up your device’s resources. This is why we recommend getting rid of them, at least temporarily, to see if that helps boost Galaxy S7 Nougat’s performance.

To delete a Widget simply hold down on it and drag it to Remove. You can always add Widgets back to your home screen if you determine they aren’t what’s dragging down your Galaxy S7’s or your Galaxy S7 Edge’s performance.

Sleep Apps

You might also want to consider sleeping or disabling certain applications on your Galaxy S7 or Galaxy S7 Edge.

Sleeping an app will disable its core functions and features. This is useful for apps that are known battery and CPU hogs and apps that send out tons of notifications.

If you want to take it a step further, you can disable apps completely. We’ve put together a quick guide that takes you through the process.

Once you get the hang of it you’ll be able to sleep and disable apps whenever necessary.

Update Your Apps

If you’re experiencing poor app performance after installing Android Nougat you’ll want to make sure your apps are updated.

Developers continue to push out important bug fix updates for their applications. If you don’t have automatic updates turned on, there’s a good chance you’ve missed one, or more, of these key bug fix updates.

If you haven’t updated your apps in awhile, head into your apps and into the Google Play Store and check out the updates available to you.

Be sure you read reviews from Nougat users before you install a new version of your favorite app. Nougat is agreeable with most apps but there are some rotten apples out there.

Use Device Maintenance

If you’re noticing abnormal amounts of lag and stuttering after installing Android Nougat on board your device, dig into Device Maintenance.

On the Galaxy S7’s Settings screen tap Device Maintenance and then go to RAM. To reduce the amount of RAM your device is using, check apps from the apps list, and tap on Clean Now.

Use Nougat’s Performance Mode

The Galaxy S7 Nougat update comes equipped with some awesome features including a new Performance Mode function. Performance Mode is found in Device Maintenance.

Performance Mode includes a Normal Mode for every day use, a Game Mode for when you’re gaming, an Entertainment Mode, and a High Performance Mode where it’ll use highest quality settings.

For more on Performance Mode, take a look at our full rundown of the new feature.

Turn Off S Voice

S Voice, Samsung’s equivalent to Apple’s Siri, can be very useful. If you rely on it, this step will be a tough one to pull off.

If you can do without S Voice (temporarily or permanently) you might notice a bump to your Galaxy S7’s performance. S Voice can be a resource hog.

To completely disable S Voice on your Galaxy S7 you’ll want to head into Applications Manager, find S Voice, tap on it, and tap on Disable.

You can always enable S Voice again if you determine it’s not responsible for your device’s poor performance on Nougat.

Hidden Developer Mode

The Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge both feature a hidden developer mode that could help you speed up your device in a matter of seconds.

We’ve put together a step-by-step walkthrough that will hold your hands through the process. It’s worth a look if you’re short on time.

Use Another Launcher

If none of these fixes help and you’re willing to replace Samsung Experience (TouchWiz) with another launcher, it’s probably worth a shot.

Samsung’s made some improvements to its user interface but it can still feel bulky and it still plays a role in your device’s performance. Potentially, a negative one.

We highly recommend trying the popular Nova Launcher on the Google Play Store. Nova Launcher comes with tons of customization options that could help you get a handle on your device’s performance.

Try Rooting Nougat

If you’ve exhausted all of these steps, and your performance still isn’t adequate, it might be time to take a more drastic approach.

You might try rooting Galaxy S7 Nougat. Developers recently released a working root for the Qualcomm-powered versions of the Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge and it might be worth a try if you’re running out of options and/or time.

Rooting allows you to delete apps and services that you normally wouldn’t be able to get rid of. The Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge are loaded up with bloat, particularly carrier models.

We’ve gone over the pros and cons of rooting a Galaxy S7 or Galaxy S7 Edge and it’s worth a look if you’re out of ideas.

Start from Scratch

This step should only be used as a last-ditch resort and only after you’ve backed up all of your important files in the cloud or on a microSD card.

If your performance is out of control, it might be worth it to start from scratch. In other words, erase everything on your phone and start anew.

There is a very good chance this will help you get control on your Galaxy S7’s performance but know that it will be a time-consuming process, particularly if you have a ton of apps, files and customization on your device.

To do this on Nougat, go to Settings > General management > Reset > Factory data reset > Reset Device > Delete All.


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