Mitchel Broussard

Mitchel is a Contributing Editor at MacRumors. Southern Louisiana-born, he lives off of bad TV, good books, and great video games. Despite a few close calls, he has yet to forget the face of his father.



eBay Debuts New Smartphone Trade-In Program 'Instant Selling'

eBay today launched a new option for customers who are looking to trade in their iPhones or other smartphones, which it's calling "Instant Selling." Using this feature, you can list an old iPhone and get paid instantly with an eBay voucher. Instead of listing an old device on eBay as normal, waiting for bids to come in and for payment to be received, eBay is making this process easier with Instant Selling. To use the program, visit eBay, enter your device's information to see if it's eligible, add images, list the device, and get a quote. Afterwards, you'll receive an instant eBay voucher representing the resell cost of the smartphone, which you can then put towards the purchase of a new smartphone or anything you come across on eBay. The retailer will also provide a shipping label for you to ship out your old iPhone. “Millions of Americans have unused phones in their homes and simply don’t realize how much their devices are worth, probably because trade-in values are typically so low,” said Alyssa Steele, Vice President of Hard Goods, eBay. “With Instant Selling, people can find out exactly how much their phone is worth, and sell their phone within a matter of minutes to immediately help fund the holidays, or maybe something off their personal wish list.” eBay's program will be helpful for anyone who plans on doing a lot of holiday shopping on the site, since the provided voucher is only accepted on eBay. If you think that might be you, eBay says that Instant Selling provides higher trade-in values on average in comparison to sites like Gazelle, EcoATM, Apple's

iPhone Ownership Among American Teens Remains Steady While Intent to Purchase Grows

American teenagers are still choosing Apple's iPhone over the competition, with 82 percent of surveyed U.S. teens saying that they own an iPhone, according to Piper Jaffray's latest survey (via Business Insider). This number has grown steadily from 76 percent in April 2017 to 78 percent in October 2017, and it now appears to have plateaued temporarily in 2018, as 82 percent of teens said they owned an iPhone back in April. Looking to the future, 86 percent of teens surveyed said that they plan on buying an iPhone as their next smartphone. This is an increase from 84 percent in the spring. In comparison, 10 percent of the teens said they planned on buying an Android smartphone next, down from 11 percent in the spring. The researchers at Piper Jaffray say that American teens' intent to buy an iPhone is now at the highest they have ever seen. Other tidbits from the report include: 45 percent of teens saying that the brand of an item is the most important factor in a purchase decision, Amazon is the top preferred website, and Instagram is now the most used social platform as Facebook faces an ongoing decline. Netflix represented 38 percent of daily video consumption, ahead of YouTube (33 percent), cable TV (16 percent), and Hulu (5 percent). For this survey, Piper Jaffray surveyed around 8,600 teenagers across 47 states with an average age of 16 and an average household income of $68,300. 44 percent of the teens were female, while 56 were

PayPal Offering $100 iTunes Gift Cards for $85 as Apple Celebrates Halloween With Horror Movie Sale

PayPal has kicked off its latest 15 percent discount on App Store and iTunes gift cards today on its Digital Gifts eBay storefront. If you head over to the website you can get the $100 iTunes gift card for $85 while the discount lasts, which can be anywhere from a few hours to multiple days. The gift card will be delivered via email within 24 hours and will be valid only on purchases made in the United States App and iTunes Stores. Like all iTunes gift card sales, this is a great opportunity to stock up on iTunes credit at a reduced price, which you can put towards third-party app subscriptions like Netflix and Hulu, iTunes movie rentals, iBooks purchases, your Apple Music subscription, and more. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with these vendors. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep the site running. iTunes Movies sales are one place you can spend newly acquired iTunes credit, and Apple recently kicked off a new under $10 "Modern Horror" sale in preparation for Halloween next week. You can check out a few of the films in this sale below, and the rest can be discovered on the iTunes Movies home page on iOS, macOS, and tvOS: The Descent - $7.99, down from $9.99 Green Room - $7.99, down from $14.99 Let the Right One In - $7.99, down from $12.99 A Quiet Place - $9.99, down from $19.99 IT (2017) - $9.99, down from $14.99 Get Out - $9.99, down from $14.99 Insidious - $9.99, down from $12.99 The Conjuring - $9.99, down from $14.99 The Conjuring 2 - $9.99, down from $14.99 Drag Me To Hell -

Chrome 70 Now Enables Picture-in-Picture by Default on macOS

Google Chrome now enables picture-in-picture as a default setting on Mac, Windows, and Linux computers as of Chrome 70. If you are up-to-date and watching a compatible video in the Chrome web browser, you can minimize it and continue browsing the web in other tabs, while the video keeps playing in a new miniature screen (via Android Police). The feature works similarly to Safari's implementation of PIP: on compatible websites you can two-finger click twice on a playing video to find "Picture in Picture." This will pause the video on the main tab, turn it black, and display the video in a new window that can be moved around anywhere on the screen. PIP was previously in the Chrome 69 beta but it had to be manually enabled, so it appears that Google is making it easier for users to gain access to the feature with Chrome 70. PIP still isn't available on every video-playing website since it will have to be adopted by each site, but you can enable PIP with YouTube in Chrome on macOS starting

Deals: Carriers Kick Off iPhone XR Promos, Anker and Choetech Launch New Charging Sales, and More

Today is iPhone XR pre-order day, and like with previous iPhone models you are able to pre-order the XR from all of the major cellular carriers, most of which are offering promotions. If you haven't pre-ordered your iPhone XR yet, check out the list below to see all of the various deals and offers you can get when buying the colorful new iPhone. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with some of these vendors. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep the site running. AT&T - Buy one iPhone XR and get another $700 off / both must be bought on AT&T Next with wireless (minimum $80/month) / must have DirecTV (minimum $29.99/month) Verizon - Buy any iPhone XR , XS, XS Max, or X and get the 64GB iPhone XR at no cost, or get $750 off a higher capacity / must add a new line to one of the iPhones / bill credit of $31.25 over 24 months starting in 1-2 billing cycles T-Mobile - Get T-Mobile Unlimited with iPhone XR at $40/month ($30 for the plan and $10 for the iPhone XR ) for four lines / qualifying credit, finance agreement, and trade-in required (including iPhone 7/7Plus and 8/8 Plus) Sprint - Get the 64GB iPhone XR for $0/month when purchased on Sprint Flex lease with eligible trade in (including iPhone X, 8/8 Plus, and 7/7 Plus) / $31.25 bill credits applied within two bill cycles / requires 18 month lease with new line of service or eligible upgrade and approved credit Of course, a few retailers are also offering promotions if you visit their stores to buy the iPhone XR . If you pre-order the iPhone XR at Sam's Club

Square Launches All-in-One Payment Device 'Terminal' With NFC and Card Support

Payments company Square today announced the launch of a new point-of-sale hardware device called "Terminal," which combines NFC, credit/debit card swiping, and chip-based payments all in one piece of hardware. Like Square's other devices, Terminal supports Apple Pay, Google Pay, and other mobile wallets using near-field communication. Square says Terminal can be used alongside an existing point-of-sale solution or as its own standalone payment processing system. Terminal also has an all-day battery, Wi-Fi and Ethernet internet connections, an offline mode, quick setup, fraud prevention, and is fully mobile so it can be used on a countertop or taken directly to customers. In terms of pricing, businesses will have to pay one transaction rate of 2.6% + 10¢ for every payment, and Square promises no hidden fees. “We love how the hardware, payments, and printer are all part of one device,” said Fabrice Borg, manager of Prive by Laurent D Salon in New York, NY. “Square Terminal makes for a more seamless and professional experience when we bring the terminal to our customers and they can pay for their services right from the salon chair.” Square first launched its original NFC reader back in November 2015, allowing any business to introduce Apple Pay support to their checkout process. Over the years the company expanded into the United Kingdom, introduced new point-of-sale devices like the Square Register, and updated the swipe-based Square Reader with a Lightning connector. Those interested can purchase Terminal in the Square Shop for $399, or pay $37 per month for 12

Beddr Launches iPhone-Connected 'SleepTuner' Device to Track and Improve Your Sleep

Startup Beddr today launched the "SleepTuner," the first FDA-registered consumer sleep wearable that helps to assess and improve sleep quality. SleepTuner is a small accessory (about the size of a postage stamp) with Bluetooth Low Energy that attaches to your forehead to measure sleep duration, track heart rate, optimize nighttime breathing, and improve oxygenation, all viewable when synced to the compatible iOS app. Specifically, SleepTuner was built to help capture and measure sleep apnea, a disorder in which breathing repeatedly stops and starts during sleep. Beddr says that its tracker includes "the essentials of a traditional sleep lab" to measure blood oxygen levels, heart rate, sleep position, and stopped breathing events. To use, SleepTuner is attached to the forehead by a hypoallergenic disposable adhesive, which the company says avoids the pitfalls of rival options that have numerous wires and other attachments. The device has a 50 mAh battery that provides up to 20 hours of continuous test time, and is rechargeable. SleepTuner has optical sensors and a 3-axis accelerometer to gather sleep data, which is saved in the Beddr Cloud until the user syncs it with the iOS app in the morning. Once synced, the app gathers data from SleepTuner over the course of its use, providing users with helpful insights like determining their optimal sleeping position, overall sleep quality, pointing out how often they wake up, highlighting night-to-night improvements, and more. Beddr compares SleepTuner to a few other sleep-tracking capable products on its website,

SoundCloud Go+ Subscription Plan Now Supports High Quality Audio Streaming at No Extra Cost

SoundCloud today announced that users on the SoundCloud Go+ subscription plan will now gain access to lossless audio streaming at no additional cost. SoundCloud Go is the company's enhanced streaming service, with three tiers that start at free with 120 million tracks to stream; $4.99/month with 120 million tracks, offline saving, and ad-free streaming; and SoundCloud Go+ with everything in the previous tiers plus 30 million "premium" tracks and high quality audio. When you discover a track on SoundCloud, it’s all about connecting as closely as possible to the creator’s sound and vision. With high quality audio streaming now part of your SoundCloud Go+ subscription, you can experience what’s new, now and next in music on a higher level. High quality audio means that content uploaded to SoundCloud in a lossless format doesn't lose the integrity of its engineered recording and will be available to stream in high quality at 256kbps AAC. Go+ subscribers can opt into this feature in SoundCloud settings > "Streaming quality." SoundCloud has been expanding its streaming service over the years, launching "The Upload" playlist in May 2017 to personally curate a list of songs for each user. In December 2017, the company debuted a new home screen in the iOS app to further lean into user personalization. The revamped launch screen offers curated recommendations, personalized playlists, and "exclusive culture-focused audio content." High quality streaming is a feature that has been missing from Apple Music since its launch in 2015, and one that a few of its rivals

Ember Temperature Control Mug Adds Support for Apple Health, Exclusive Colors Now Sold in Apple Stores

Ember today announced that its temperature control mugs will now sync with Apple's Health iOS app, allowing users to track their caffeine consumption throughout the day alongside other Health app statistics. The updated Ember app introduces this Health integration, with features like setting a maximum caffeine intake measurement for the day that will warn users when they near the limit. The company explains that users will also be able to use the Health app's information to understand how their caffeine consumption affects other data tracked in Health, like heart rate and sleep patterns. Version 3.0 of the Ember iOS app [Direct Link] is available to download now on the iOS App Store. "As a design-led brand, we are committed to delivering world class innovation that is as human and intuitive as possible. The updated Ember app with the Apple Health feature will give consumers a simple, easy way to track their caffeine consumption during the day, in order to make more informed decisions about what they are drinking. It's one more step Ember is taking to provide the best experience for coffee and tea lovers." Ember's mugs allow the user to set a precise drinking temperature to ensure that their coffee or tea remains at the perfect level of heat. Both the Travel Mug and Ceramic Mug support caffeine tracking, favorite drink presets, and integration with the Health app. The Ceramic Mug maintains the ideal drinking temperature for one hour (or all day if set on the charging coaster), while the Travel Mug maintains temperature for two hours (and similarly for all day on a

Deals: Save $200 on 2018 MacBook Pro, $80 on 2017 iPad, $100 on iPad mini 4, and More

Apple's 2018 15-inch MacBook Pro with Touch Bar (2.2 GHz, 16GB RAM, 256GB HD) is receiving a discount at a few online retailers this week, marked down to $2,199.99 from $2,399.99 on Adorama and B&H Photo. B&H Photo still has a collection of 2017 MacBook Pros on sale for $200-$900 off select models as well. If you're on the hunt for a new iPad, Walmart is offering the 9.7-inch iPad (128GB, Wi-Fi) from early 2017 for $349.00, down from $429.00. This is one of the lowest prices for the 128GB 5th-generation iPad online today, so be sure to head over to Walmart and place an order if you're interested. In a separate iPad sale, Best Buy has the iPad mini 4 (128GB, Wi-Fi) for $299.99, down from $399.99. The iPad mini 4 is available in Gold, Space Gray, and Silver, and you can even save a little more money if you're willing to purchase an open-box item, with prices starting at $281.99. It's been three years since Apple launched the iPad mini 4 , and we've yet to see an update for the device line, so if you're interested in the 7.9-inch form factor this is definitely a good time to jump in on the older-model iPad . Anker has a new crop of promo codes on Amazon this week, discounting portable battery packs, Bluetooth speakers, car chargers, and more. You can check out all of these accessories and their respective discount codes in the list below, and be sure to notice their expiration dates as some end as soon as this weekend. Qi-Certified Ultra Slim Wireless Charger - $10.99 with code GETWIRELESS, down from $17.99 (exp. 10/20) PowerPort Cube, 3 Outlets and 3 USB

Apple Apologizes After Stolen Apple ID Credentials Aided in Phishing Attack in China

Apple has formally apologized to users in China over the hacking of some Chinese accounts in a series of phishing scams that hit the country last week. The successful phishing attacks used stolen Apple IDs to gain access to customer funds, leading to "a small number of...users' accounts" being accessed through these scams (via The Wall Street Journal). In a statement shared in China today, Apple said: "We are deeply apologetic about the inconvenience caused to our customers by these phishing scams." When news of the incident emerged last week, Chinese mobile payment companies Alipay and WeChat reported that hackers were able to take an unknown amount of money from accounts using stolen Apple IDs. Some users were said to have lost up to 2,000 yuan ($288) following the breach. According to Apple's new statement, these victims had not enabled two-factor authentication, making it easier for the hackers to gain access to their accounts. Apple didn't confirm how many users were affected in China, how much money was stolen in total, or how the hackers gained access to the Apple IDs in question. The company encouraged all users to enable two-factor authentication on their accounts to ensure further security protections are in place. China remains important to Apple's overseas expansion plans, but the company has faced numerous speed bumps in this regard over the years. In 2018, Apple moved Chinese iCloud data to state-owned China Telecom, which brought up user privacy concerns; faced an issue with an overabundance of illegal gambling apps on the Chinese iOS App

Lyft's All-Access Subscription Plan Rolling Out Nationwide, $300/Month for 30 Rides

In March, Lyft began testing a monthly subscription plan for select high-frequency users, and today the company announced that a version of this plan will now be available to everyone in the United States by the end of the week. Called the "All-Access Plan," passengers will be able to pay upfront every 30 days, locking in a set price for their rides and not having to pay out for each individual Lyft trip. Subscribers of the All-Access Plan will get 30 rides (for up to $15 each) for a monthly fee of $299, and can cancel their plan anytime. If a ride goes over $15, subscribers will have to pay the difference. If the 30 ride limit is exceeded, Lyft will offer five percent off additional rides. Additionally, unused rides will not roll over to the following monthly pay period. During its test, Lyft tried out plans that cost $200/month, $300/month, and $400/month for different amount of rides and incentives, but it appears that the company landed on $299/month as the sweet spot. At the time, Lyft CEO Logan Green discussed the subscription plan tests, saying, "We are going to move the entire industry from one based on ownership to one based on subscription." In today's press release, Lyft says the nationwide rollout of the All-Access Plan is the first step toward "delivering on our goal of making car ownership optional." When you spend less time driving (and parking), you have more freedom — and more savings. Americans who use the All-Access Plan for all of their personal car needs can save up to 59%* per month compared to owning a car. This is the first step

Game Developers Discuss How Apple Could Improve Gaming on Apple TV

Last week, Minecraft: Apple TV Edition was removed from the tvOS App Store and developer Mojang announced that anyone who was still playing the game on Apple TV would no longer see any updates or further support. In a statement, the company said that it needed to reallocate resources "to the platforms that our players use the most." In a new article shared over the weekend, Ars Technica spoke with a few game developers in the wake of Minecraft's removal from the tvOS App Store , attempting to gain a consensus on what they think Apple needs to do to make the Apple TV a true gaming device. Strange Flavour CEO Aaron Fothergill said that Apple could do this by doing a better job of supporting Game Center across platforms, and creating its own gaming controller to bundle in with an Apple TV , "so there's an Apple TV being sold specifically for games." Developer Patrick Hogan also indicated support for Apple to build its own full-featured gaming controller and include it in "every" Apple TV box, while other developers Ars Technica spoke with believed an optional gaming Apple TV bundle would suffice. Continuing, Hogan said Apple's marketing for Apple TV should emphasize gaming more, and the company should "spend a lot of money on funding platform exclusives, ports, and presence at every major gaming expo and conference to break the chicken-egg problem of getting customers to make it viable to devs." Most of the developers I spoke with seemed to believe the same thing I did when I reviewed the Apple TV : there's a lot of potential here for this to be the Apple gaming console

PlayStation Vue Now Supports Apple TV App

Live TV streaming service PlayStation Vue recently added support for Apple's TV app on fourth and fifth-generation Apple TV devices, as well as on iOS. With this addition, PS Vue subscribers can now sync the on-demand movies and TV shows they watch within Sony's app to the TV app, making it easier to jump directly into a PS Vue stream. The update is evident when browsing for movies and TV shows in the TV app, with PlayStation Vue now listed as a location to stream content alongside previously supported apps like HBO GO, Prime Video, Showtime, Starz, Hulu, and others. If you subscribe to PS Vue and have the app installed, you can add PS Vue-compatible films and TV series to your Up Next list, and as you watch them in the PS Vue app, Apple's TV app will update and keep track of your progress. As some users on Reddit pointed out, live sports also appear to be supported, so you'll be able to add games to your Up Next list, then jump directly into the game from the TV app to PS Vue and start watching. Apple hasn't noted PS Vue as a supported app yet on its website, but numerous users have reported seeing a splash screen when opening PS Vue on Apple TV , asking them for permission to connect to the TV app. While there are nearly 90 apps supported in the TV app now, including a few live news apps, PS Vue's addition marks one of the first times an over-the-top live TV streaming service has been added. Rivals like DirecTV Now and YouTube TV lack this

Deals: Last Call for Exclusive Anker Discounts, 2017 MacBook Flash Sale, and More

We're entering the final days of our latest exclusive sale with accessory maker Anker, in which you can get up to 42 percent off portable chargers, speakers, iPhone cases, wireless chargers, and headphones. You can find every product on sale in the list below, and if you see something you like be sure to place your order before the codes expire on Sunday, October 14. As usual, these discounts are found on Amazon, so Prime members can place their orders and get free 2-day shipping. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with these vendors. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep the site running. iPhone Cases iPhone X Breeze Case - $3.99 with code RUMORS07, down from $6.99 iPhone X Shield Case - $3.99 with code RUMORS07, down from $6.99 Cables and Chargers PowerLine+ Lightning Cable with Pouch (3ft, Red) - $9.49 with code RUMORS92, down from $13.99 Powerline+ II Lightning Cable with Pouch (6ft, Black) - $13.49 with code RUMORS53, down from $17.99 PowerPort Cube with 3 Outlets and 3 USB Ports - $20.79 with code RUMORS63, down from $25.99 USB-C Wall Charger with 5 Ports - $39.99 with code RUMORS56, down from $49.99 PowerWave 7.5 Stand Wireless Charger - $39.99 with code RUMORS25, down from $49.99 Audio Accessories Soundcore Spirit Pro Sports Headphones - $39.99 with code RUMORS88, down from $49.99 Soundcore Vortex Wireless Headset - $44.99 with code RUMORS03, down from $59.99 Soundcore Flare Portable Bluetooth 360-degree Speaker (Black) - $50.99 with code RUMORS31, down from $59.99 Portable Chargers

Sygic's 'Car Navigation: GPS & Maps' iOS App Introduces CarPlay Support

Sygic's "Car Navigation: GPS & Maps" iOS app has updated to support CarPlay today. Sygic's app has a long history on the iOS App Store as one of the first GPS navigation apps available to download on the iPhone. With CarPlay support, Sygic Car Navigation on iOS [Direct Link] connects to a car's infotainment system, projecting Sygic's turn-by-turn directions onto a car's screen. Drivers can control Sygic Car Navigation features through steering wheel buttons and touch screen controls, if they are signed up for the company's Premium plans. Downloading the app is free, but after a seven day free trial, users will have to pay for one of a handful of bundles to acquire a license to use the app. The Premium lifetime licenses included features like offline maps, speed limits, voice-guided navigation, fuel prices, lane guidance, route sharing, traffic information, and more. Prices for North American bundles range from $13.99 for "basic" to $74.99 for "connected." At WWDC in June, Apple announced that third-party navigation apps would be able to work with CarPlay this year, finally opening up CarPlay navigation to more than just Apple Maps. Following the announcement, CarPlay support rolled out for both Waze and Google Maps in September, and AutoNavi followed in China a few weeks ago. Sygic's app is the latest addition to this

Apple Planning to Launch New Clear Case for iPhone XR, Priced Around $40

Apple's iPhone XR will go up for pre-order one week from today, and once the lower-cost smartphone is available customers will have the option of purchasing a see-through case sold by Apple. Spotted by Twitter user @ivanincanada and shared by 9to5Mac, iPhone XR press releases in countries like Canada mention "a clear case" priced at $55 CAD, or about $40 USD. The iPhone XR will come in white, black, blue, coral, yellow, and (PRODUCT)RED, all made with glass bodies and matching anodized aluminum frames. Because of the colorful additions to Apple's iPhone lineup, a clear case makes sense, offering users the chance to show off which color option they've chosen while still protecting their iPhone XR . Images via 9to5Mac Similar to Apple's other first-party cases, the clear case has the usual cutouts for the rear-facing camera, and protrusions for the volume rockers, silence toggle, and lock button. No images shared today show off the front of the case, but it appears that there is a gap in the bottom of the case -- like the company's silicone and leather case options -- allowing for access to the Lightning port and more comfortable swipe-up gestures, which are crucial for navigating iOS on the iPhone X, XS, and XR. Apple announced the iPhone XR alongside the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max at an event in September. The latter two smartphones have already launched, and Apple has debuted a new line of silicone and leather cases for the devices, in as many as nine new colorways for each type of case. The iPhone XS and XS Max also have the folio case option, which protects

Apple Music Partners With Lyric Database Genius

Apple Music and lyric database Genius today announced a partnership, allowing Apple Music subscribers to visit Genius and play any song in full on the song's lyric page. This will work both on the Genius website and in its iOS app. The partnership will also beef up Apple Music 's own lyric database with Genius's information, providing the music streaming service with lyrics to "thousands" of songs. Apple first introduced lyrics in Apple Music with the launch of iOS 10 in 2016, and now the feature will be enhanced with Genius. “Being able to read lyrics and annotations on Genius while you listen along on Apple Music is a dream Genius experience,” said ​Ben Gross, Genius’s Chief Strategy Officer​. “We’re proud to make Apple Music our official music player, and we’re doubly excited to bring Genius lyrics to their amazing platform.” To use the Apple Music player on Genius, search for any song, and then tap "connect account" when the player pops up. This process will require you to allow Genius to access your Apple Music , media library, and listening activity, and once you accept you'll be able to listen to full tracks within Genius on the web (desktop and iOS mobile web) and in the iOS app. In Apple Music , you can check on a song's lyrics by tapping the ellipsis icon at the bottom right of the player screen on iOS, then tapping "Lyrics." Not every song supports lyrics, and it's unclear how soon the Genius encyclopedia of lyrics will be added to Apple

CVS Pharmacy Now Accepting Apple Pay in Stores

CVS Pharmacy has officially launched support for Apple Pay nationwide this week, a few months after Apple CEO Tim Cook confirmed that the retailer would be accepting Apple Pay later in the year. CVS has been gradually rolling out support for Apple Pay at its stores in recent weeks, and now it appears to be officially complete. Using Apple Pay , CVS customers can now pay for their items on compatible iPhones and Apple Watches, by placing the devices close to a near field communication (NFC) payment terminal at checkout. In a marketing email being sent out to customers, Apple encourages shoppers to check out at CVS with its mobile wallet: Get your essentials in a flash. Buying snacks, vitamins, personal care, and prescriptions from CVS Pharmacy just got faster and more secure. At the launch of Apple Pay in 2014, CVS disabled NFC payment terminals at some of its locations in order to stop the use of Apple Pay . A few years later, the company debuted "CVS Pay," which used a barcode-based system to allow customers to check out using their smartphone and the CVS Pharmacy app. Now that CVS has turned around and rolled out Apple Pay support, there are just a few remaining large retail chains refraining from supporting Apple's mobile wallet. This includes Target, which previously said it has no plans to accept Apple Pay in its stores and instead launched a "Wallet" feature in the Target iOS app, allowing customers to pay for their groceries and other items with their smartphone at checkout. Another is Walmart, which has followed a similar trajectory as Target: the company

Pocket's Text-to-Speech 'Listen' Feature Updated With More Natural Voice and Easier Controls

Read-it-later app Pocket has announced a few new features coming to the iOS and Android versions of the app today, including an updated text-to-speech ability and a new design. After updating to Pocket 7.0, users will be able to listen to text-based articles that they've saved in their Pocket list more easily. With the "Listen" feature, articles can be saved into Pocket from around the internet, opened in the app, and played in their entirety through text-to-speech. The updated feature is now more easily accessed through a dedicated headphone icon right on the Pocket main screen. Pocket's Listen feature is now also more human sounding thanks to Amazon Polly, a cloud service that can convert text into lifelike speech. Because of this, Pocket says that Listen is not limited to any specific publishers or articles, but can be applied to any text articles viewed inside of the Pocket app. Your Pocket list just became your own personal podcast, curated by you. Our new listen feature frees the content you’ve saved to fit into your busy life. It enables you to absorb articles whenever and wherever, whether you are driving, or walking, working out, cooking, or on the train. The new update also brings a fresh design to Pocket, which the company says is tailored to ensure that readers can focus on their saved articles. There's a new and cleaner article view right when the app is opened, a new app-wide dark theme and sepia theme, and updated fonts and typography so reading is more comfortable overall. Earlier in the year, Pocket introduced time estimates for articles and