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Julio Ojeda-Zapata

Julio Ojeda-Zapata

Julio Ojeda-Zapata is a technology reporter and blogger at the Pioneer Press in St. Paul, Minnesota. He has written books about Twitter, the iPad, and mobile productivity. Keep up with him at ojezap.com.

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Revitalize an Elderly Mac with Google’s Chrome OS Flex

If you have an old Mac gathering dust, Google may be able to return it to active use. Its free Chrome OS Flex replaces macOS and puts pep back in the Mac’s step. It’s a decent option for families who might want to set up workstations for kids or who just want a dedicated Web machine somewhere in the house.

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5G Home Internet Is a Good Alternative To Wired Broadband

T-Mobile and Verizon provide home Internet service via devices that use the wireless carriers’ 5G data signal as backhaul for local Wi-Fi. Julio Ojeda-Zapata has been testing both services and found them to be affordable, fast, and dependable.

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Apple Unveils Fifth-Generation iPad Air with M1, 5G, and Center Stage

At its Peek Performance event, Apple unveiled a fifth-generation iPad Air that swaps out the aging A14 Bionic processor for the M1 chip found in the iPad Pro and lower-cost Macs.

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Bowflex’s C6 Bike Is a Less Costly, More Versatile Peloton

Peloton exercise bikes are expensive and lock users into the company’s exercise service. Julio Ojeda-Zapata tried a less expensive alternative, Bowflex’s C6 bike. It gives users the flexibility to use a range of fitness services with an iPhone or iPad, an Apple TV, or a Mac.

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AT&T and Verizon Debut Faster, More Widely Available 5G Service

AT&T and Verizon have started using C-band wireless spectrum that will speed up their 5G cellular service and make it available to more customers. This important step in 5G’s overall evolution brings AT&T and Verizon more in line with T-Mobile, which has had an edge in available spectrum until now.

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Apple Music Voice Plan Is a Bargain If You’re OK Using Siri

The new Apple Music Voice Plan is a bargain at $4.99 per month, but it mostly limits you to using Apple’s Siri voice assistant for searches and playback. The Voice Plan has been met with some skepticism, but Julio Ojeda-Zapata thinks it’s a good option for casual music listeners.

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Beats Fit Pro Are Good Alternatives to Third-Generation AirPods

A week after the release of the third-generation AirPods, Apple subsidiary Beats By Dre unveiled Fit Pro earbuds that offer a compelling alternative thanks to a more secure fit, H1 chip, and active noise cancellation.

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First Impressions of the Third-Generation AirPods

Josh Centers and Julio Ojeda-Zapata team up to give you their first impressions of Apple’s third-generation AirPods.

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Apple Unveils Third-Generation AirPods, Tweaks HomePod mini and Apple Music

Apple used its “Unleashed” event partly to focus on music. It revealed third-generation AirPods with a host of improvements, unveiled new colors for its HomePod mini speaker, and announced a new Apple Music Voice Plan for access to the music service via Siri voice commands.

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Center Stage Keeps You in the Video Chat Frame

Apple recently unveiled an iPad camera feature called Center Stage that keeps one or more people within the frame during video chats even when they move around. Julio Ojeda-Zapata gave Center Stage a try and compared it to smart displays from Amazon, Facebook, and Google.

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Apple Watch Series 7 Brings Modest Tweaks

Rumors suggested the Apple Watch was due for a major physical design, but the Series 7 turned out to look much like its predecessor—albeit with a few physical and software changes. Also, watchOS 8 gets some fitness improvements aimed largely at cyclists.

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Comparing MagSafe Battery Packs: Not A Simple Choice

Which MagSafe-compatible portable battery pack should you buy? Julio Ojeda-Zapata put Apple’s MagSafe Battery Pack and three of its competitors through their paces and found pluses and minuses across the board. Though Apple’s product is the only MagSafe-certified option, you shouldn’t dismiss the other products given their lower cost and worthwhile features.

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Two Siri Remote Sleeves That Incorporate AirTag Pockets

When Apple unveiled its AirTag tracker, many wondered why the company failed to build Find My technology into its second-generation Siri Remote, introduced at the same time. Now a couple of accessory makers are solving this issue with silicone Siri Remote sleeves that incorporate AirTag pockets. Julio Ojeda-Zapata tried both.

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The Ultimate Guide to Choosing Apple/Beats Audio Gear

Choosing Apple earbuds or headphones becomes more complicated when you factor in gear from Apple subsidiary Beats by Dre. To wrap his head around all the options, Julio Ojeda-Zapata constructed a huge comparison chart. This companion article separates the various Apple and Beats devices into categories to assist you in your decision.

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T-Mobile’s Network Test Drive Puts 5G on Your iPhone’s eSIM

T-Mobile is offering free “test drives” of its 5G cellular-data service by leveraging the eSIM built into recent-model iPhones. After a quick app install, you get 30 days or 30 GB of data (whichever comes first) to try out T-Mobile. The beauty of the eSIM approach is that it doesn’t mess with your existing service.