Best vlogging camera: The best compact, mirrorless and action cameras for YouTube, Snapchat or Instagram vlogging

Whether your goal is to be the next big social media superstar, or you simply want to carve a niche out for yourself in your very own blog, having the right camera will make shooting your own vlogs much easier, and much more enjoyable.
The good news is that you don’t need to splash out on the most expensive kit to produce professional-looking content. While some cameras will set you back a fair bit, you may be surprised at how affordable some of the best vlogging cameras – even those that are able to shoot in 4K. But choosing the right vlogging camera will depend largely on the kind of videos you’re planning to shoot. If you’ll mostly be filming beauty tutorials at home, you’ll have different needs to someone who wants to vlog their travel adventures in extreme climates. 
Check out our buying guide below to see what features will be best for you. Or, if you already know what you’re looking for, you can skip straight to our round-up of the best vlogging cameras money can buy.
READ NEXT: The best compact, CSC and digital SLR cameras 
How to choose the best camera for vlogging
What video resolution is best?
Whether you’re just getting started or looking to upgrade your existing vlogging setup, these are the key features to consider when looking for a new vlogging camera. Most cameras – and certainly all the cameras on this list – can shoot video at “Full HD” (1,920 x 1,080) resolution. That provides a huge amount of detail, but if you’re serious about videography you may be tempted to choose a camera capable of the much higher 4K (3,840 x 2,160) resolution. However, 4K footage takes longer to render, and will require a more powerful computer to edit. And the truth is, if your viewers are going to be watching on phones or laptops, the extra pixels are very unlikely to make a noticeable difference. Unless you’re a professional, it’s normally better to stick with 1080p.
Is size and weight important?
If you’re planning to shoot active vlogs that involve carrying your camera around with you, portability is very important. Lugging a bulky camera around with you is a chore, whereas you can keep a lightweight model on you at all times, to be sure you don’t miss out on the money shot. Luckily, there are many pocket-sized compact cameras that shoot DSLR-quality videos and are perfect for vlogging on the go. Obviously this is less of an issue if you’ll mostly be shooting with a tripod, or filming at home.
What is Optical Image Stabilisation and do I need it?
Optical image stabilisation lets a camera automatically reduce the effect of shaky hands and other unwanted movements. Without it, your vlogs could look jittery and unprofessional. Editing can help remove some of the shakiness that will happen when vlogging, but if you can keep your footage as smooth as possible in the first place, life is a whole lot easier; it’s worth spending a little more to buy a camera that comes with stabilisation built in.
Is audio quality important?
Even if you want to use music in your videos, most vlogs feature at least a small amount of talking – and many feature nothing but the vlogger speaking to the camera. If the sound captured by your camera sounds harsh and boxy, there’s almost nothing you can do to fix it, so choosing a model with a good in-built microphone is crucial. For the best sound possible, choose a camera with an external mic port and connect a separate high-quality microphone.
What other features should I look out for?
On top of the essential features you’ll need in a vlogging camera, there are a few useful extras you might want to consider. Many vloggers like to have a flip-out screen so they can see what they’re recording and check they look good on camera. If you’ll be recording outdoors for long periods of time, choosing a camera with a removable battery will mean you can carry spares, so you always have enough juice to keep on shooting.
The best vlogging cameras to buy
1. Canon PowerShot G7 X Mark II: Best all-round vlogging camera
Price when reviewed: £530

The G7 X isn’t the lightest camera around, and the lens is a little on the chunky side. Overall, though, it’s still comfortable to carry around in your hand or pocket. If you’re going to be vlogging your travels or day-to-day life, you won’t find a smaller camera that can deliver such professional quality video.
That great-looking footage is partly thanks to the G7 X’s excellent autofocus: it’s fast. reliable and easy to adjust via the touchscreen when you want to change subject. The camera is also particularly good for shooting in low light, with less noise than other similarly priced cameras, thanks to its wide f/1.8-2.8 lens. The only disappointment is the lack of an external mic port; the in-built microphone is by no means terrible, but it’s worth investing in a wind muff if you’re shooting outdoors.
Key specs – Recording quality: 1080p; Weight: 319g; Image resolution: 20.1MP; Flip screen: Yes; Wi-Fi enabled: Yes.
Click here to read our full review of the Canon G7 X Mark II
2. Sony Alpha a6000: Best vlogging camera with interchangeable lenses
Price when reviewed: £519 with SELP 1650 lens kit

The a6000 is bulkier than other cameras on this list, and not quite small enough to slip into a pocket, but it offers a lot of visual versatility thanks to its support for interchangeable lenses. Its lack of in-built stabilisation is easily rectified with the right choice of lens, and its lightning-fast autofocus is superior to that of any other camera in this price range, really setting the a6000 apart as a top camera for vlogging.
Although the a6000 comes with a tilting screen, it won’t fold all the way round like other cameras on this list, so you can’t use it to monitor yourself as you record. If that’s not a problem for you then the a6000 is hard to beat.
Key specs – Recording quality: 1080p; Weight: 285g; Image quality: 24.3MP; Flip screen: Yes; Wi-Fi enabled: Yes.
Click here to read our full review of the Sony a6000
3. GoPro HERO5 Black: Best vlogging camera for action and adventure
Price when reviewed: £329

You’re probably familiar with the GoPro brand, and for good reason: the company’s superb action cameras get better with every update. Despite its tiny palm-sized frame and relatively small price tag, the HERO5 is possibly the most versatile camera around. Not only can it record in 4K, film underwater and shoot time lapse, it can be expanded with a huge range of accessories, allowing you to film in pretty much any situation and edit the footage directly on your phone. Our only caveat is that some of cases and accessories can dampen the sound quality.
Some vloggers use a GoPro camera alongside a larger primary vlogging camera, but if you’re happy to forgo the flip out screen and keep it simple, the GoPro is all you’ll ever need to shoot high-quality vlogs and other videos. That’s great, because it’s small and light enough to keep in a backpack or pocket, and can be quickly pulled out to discreetly capture high-quality video whenever and wherever the mood takes you.
Key specs – Recording quality: 4K; Weight: 118g; Image quality: 12MP; Flip screen: No; Wi-Fi enabled: Yes.
Click here to read our full review of the GoPro HERO5 Black 
4. Olympus PEN E-PL7: Best for all-in-one blogging and vlogging
Price when reviewed: £450 with 14-42mm lens kit

The Olympus PEN is often dubbed the “blogger camera”, and it’s easy to see why. Everything about this portable, lightweight camera is geared up for social-media creation, including videos and vlogs. The E-PL7 is one of the newest PEN models, and it has a number of winning features, including a flip-out touchscreen, built-in Wi-Fi and a choice of three stylish colourways.
Aesthetics aside, the E-PL7 works brilliantly for vlogging. The standard 14-42mm lens delivers great-looking video, but is also changeable to give you maximum versatility. There’s an in-camera app for easy video editing and uploading – and you can even add music, so it’s perfect for sharing quick vlogs on the go. It also comes with built-in image stabilisation, so it’s everything you need to get your vlogging career off to a great start.
Key specs – Recording quality: 1080p; Weight: 400g; Image quality: 16MP; Flip screen: Yes; Wi-Fi enabled: Yes.
Click here to read our full review of the Olympus PEN E-PL7
5. Panasonic Lumix GH5: Best for professional-looking videos – if you can afford it
Price when reviewed: £1,699 (body only)

If you want to shoot professional-grade video, the Panasonic Lumix GH5 should be at the top of your list. At £1,699 it’s certainly not cheap, but serious vloggers will love how much this camera has to offer. As well as shooting 4K footage at 60 frames per second, this mirrorless micro-four thirds camera can record 1080p at up to 180 frames per second. It uses a super high-resolution 3,680k-dot OLED live viewfinder for perfect framing in all light conditions, and has two SD card slots, so you can shoot for twice as long, or keep a second copy of your raw footage for safety. It’s also splash-, dust- and freeze-proof – something that’s hard to come by on high-end cameras.
The quality of still images isn’t so strong: if that matters to you then you might want to look elsewhere. But the GH5 excels at video and outperforms similarly priced alternatives by a long shot, making it one of the best cameras available for vloggers.
Key specs – Recording quality: 4K; Weight: 645g; Image quality: 20.3MP; Flip screen: No; Wi-Fi enabled: Yes.
Click here to read our full review on the Panasonic Lumix GH5

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Qualcomm Snapdragon 845: All the best new features

If you bought a flagship smartphone in 2017, the chances are it was powered by the Snapdragon 835. The Sony XZ Premium, OnePlus 5 and 5T, HTC U11 and the US version of the Samsung Galaxy S8 all had Qualcomm’s top-end smartphone processor inside.
Next year, the chip behind the biggest and best smartphones is going to be the Snapdragon 845, and with Qualcomm just releasing full details of its new chip, we’ve rounded up the platforms five best new features.
READ NEXT: The best upcoming smartphones of 2017-18 – we pick out next year’s big players
1. Better camera quality
When a new phone is launched, most of the coverage of the camera focuses on the hardware: things such as the resolution, aperture and pixel size all have a profound effect on image quality. Increasingly, though – as proved by the Google Pixel and Pixel 2 – the quality of the photographs and video you get from your phone is being influenced by the power of the processor behind it.
The Snapdragon 845 brings a number of improvements on the camera front, and most of this is due to an improved ISP (image signal processor) – the Spectra 280.
The chip supports faster, 60fps multi-frame noise reduction at resolutions up to 16 megapixels, which should mean next year’s phone camera’s will perform even better in low light.

There’s a new type of photo mode in the offing, too, called ImMotion. It will probably go by another name by the time it appears in a phone, but it looks intriguing allowing users to designate parts of still images to be captured as video.
Also on the cards is improved blurry background portrait photography without the need for a dual-camera setup and more advanced facial-recognition support.
Video features include the ability to shoot video compatible with the Ultra HD Premium standard at up to 60fps, and improved EIS (electronic image stablisation) for even smoother handheld video footage.
2. Faster performance
Qualcomm’s mobile chips typically receive a performance boost in each generation and the Snapdragon 845 is no different. The octa-core Kryo 385 inside the 845 delivers a speed bump of between 25% and 30% for the high power quad-core CPU, and a 15% boost for the “efficiency”.
In terms of clock speeds that means the 845 will run at up to 2.8GHz, up from the 835’s 2.45GHz.
There’s a new GPU inside the Snapdragon 845 as well, which will provide a similar level of performance improvement. The Adreno 630 is 30% faster according to Qualcomm.

3. Longer battery life
One thing the Snapdragon 835 delivered in spades was battery life and with the 845, Qualcomm is promising more power-efficiency savings. It won’t be doing that by moving to a new manufacturing process – surprising as Samsung’s 8nm chip-making process is now reportedly ready for manufacture.
Instead, the 845’s better power efficiency is achieved through a series of architectural changes. The GPU’s greater power enables it to be 30% more power-efficient than before, for instance, and there’s a new 3MB “system cache”, usable not only by the CPU but also by other parts of the 845 such as the GPU and the modem, and this helps reduce memory power consumption.
There’s also an improved version of fast charging here – Quick Charge 4+ – which will charge your phone from empty to 50% in 15 minutes.
4. Faster connectivity and better Bluetooth
The Snapdragon 835 was the first chip to introduce Gigabit 4G to smartphones and the 845 ups the ante another notch, moving this time to a top speed of 1.2Gbits/sec.
Aside from that, the 845 makes better use of unlicensed spectrum, which means it’s a little easier for network operators to reach Gigabit speeds.
The improvements don’t just focus on cellular speed, though. The chip has “more robust” 802.11ac Wi-Fi that should mean phones will connect more quickly to nearby networks with less waiting around.
It also has support for Bluetooth 5, but with proprietary enhancements that allow for the broadcast of an audio signal to multiple devices simultaneously. That means you’ll be able to hook up your phone to a bunch of speakers for a boost in volume, or share your playlist with others wearing headphones nearby.
This enhancement also means that independently wireless earbuds such as the Bragi Dash Pro could, in future, benefit from a battery-life boost.
5. Better security
As we rely more on our phones to do everything, from banking to booking holidays and paying for goods in shops, security is becoming increasingly important. And the last big new feature for the Snapdragon 845 is its secure processing unit (SPU).
This is a separate component within the 845 with its own processing core, memory and random number generator. The idea is that privacy-sensitive operations, such as fingerprint, iris or facial recognition, can now be carried out entirely within the confines of the SPU, without that sensitive data having to be transferred in and out of less secure areas of the SoC.

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Nanoleaf Aurora review: A modern way to light up your home

Nanoleaf Aurora Smarter Kit: What’s inside
When you open the box, you’ll see nine modular triangles of 100LM each, which can all be interconnected. Tunable light temperatures range anywhere from 1200K-6500K. If you’re a fan of LEGOs, then you’ll love putting these lights together. How? However your heart desires.

In the Smarter Kit, you’ll find 9 panels, 9 connectors, 1 controller, 28 double-faced pieces of tape and a power supply.

One of the major pros of Nanoleaf Aurora lights is the personalization: each triangle has three slots where you insert the plastic connectors (they look like SIM cards) included in the box. These connectors let you attach all the triangles together to create any design you want. Later on, you’ll have to decide on that shape according to what you like and the space you have available.
If nine triangles aren’t enough for what you want to do, however, you can always buy an expansion pack with three additional panels for $59.99. Here in the office, we decided to get one the expansion packs, so Luca and I were having a blast combining 12 triangles into a bunch of different shapes. You can connect up to a maximum of 30 panels to one power supply without any hubs or bridges. Make sure to keep in mind though that the more you connect, the more the control will overheat where the current passes through it.

The physical controller lets you turn it on/off © AndroidPIT

Nanoleaf Aurora: installation and features
Connecting the triangles for the first time will give you the impression that they’re a bit loose, maybe a bit unstable, and that they don’t feel very resistant. I didn’t actually think they’d stick to the wall connected like that. Also, it seemed like they weighed way too much to hang on the wall with only a few pieces of double-sided tape. But, I was proven wrong.

All connected together, it looked like it weighed too much to hang on the wall. But, I was proven wrong.

I would recommend that at first, you put the pieces on a table or the ground to make your design, and then stick them to the wall and connect them one-by-one. If you try to connect more than one piece at a time, you’ll probably need another pair of hands, and you’ll run the risk of having a lopsided design (like what happened to Luca and me). Lastly, connect the controller with the physical buttons that let you turn it on/off and control the lights. You’ll also have to plug it into the outlet of course.
Once you’ve decided on your design, download the app on your phone and connect Aurora Nanoleaf to the Wi-Fi. The first few attempts with our Samsung Galaxy S8 did not go well, but then we switched to an LG V30, and everything went smoothly. Within a couple of seconds, we were all paired up. So, apparently, the problem was with the S8. What happened to us though, was that it would lose connection and we’d have to unplug it from the outlet to make sure the lights would respond to commands.

Nanoleaf Smarter Series

Once you get everything up on the wall and connected together, you can quickly get to the preset colors that come stock on the app or even make your own by clicking on the (+). Next, pick the colors you like the most and save the result. Now, you’ll find your chosen color combo with the other ones, and you can change it or delete it by clicking on the edit button.
Once you’re in the app, it’s very straightforward to see precisely how you’ve designed your lights. By clicking on the triangles (in the app, not physically, unfortunately), you can choose the color you want for that specific triangle. You can also connect, move and erase pieces while it’s turned on. Later on, if you add any triangles, they’ll automatically follow the selected color pattern.

Choose one of the pre-set colors or make your own. © AndroidPIT

From the app, you can adjust the brightness and light dynamics, in other words, the sequence and speed that they turn on. There are six different modes, each with subsections that let you play around with the direction or pattern the colors of the lights change from one triangle to another.
Furthermore, you can save your set up in the cloud and program the lights to turn on/off at specific times. One of the great things about Nanoleaf Aurora is that it works with Assistant, Alexa, and Siri. I gave it a test run with Assistant, and with one voice command I could turn the lights on and off, as well as change the pattern. Response time was almost immediate! There’s just one downside to this whole thing: the cable.

Nanoleaf Aurora also works with voice command. © AndroidPIT

Aurora Rhythm: light up your music
There’s also an additional module that can be connected to the triangles to synchronize the lights with music in real time. Music or voice: all you need to do is talk to see how the lights change based on the sound. To set it up, the only thing you need to do is connect it to the Nanoleaf Aurora, and you’re done. Without a doubt, one of the best things about these devices is their ease of use and installation.

Aurora Rhythm in the spotlight! © AndroidPIT

Before going any further, make sure you’ve installed the latest version of the app’s software (Settings> Firmware updates>Version 2.1.3). I’d recommend putting Rhythm next to a speaker so you can admire how it works. Going from one rhythm to another takes a few seconds (at most), but this doesn’t dampen the overall user experience any.
In general, this extension is designed for music lovers and a really cool idea for anyone who wants to put a Nanoleaf Aurora in a space with music, like a living room or bar. Aurora Rhythm isn’t included in the Smarter Kit, but you can buy it separately for around $49.99.

From the Rhythm section, pick a rhythm that you want your lights to follow. © AndroidPIT

Nanoleaf Aurora: price
Nanoleaf Aurora is available on the brand’s official website, the Apple Store and Amazon for $229 for the base kit with Aurora Rhythm and free shipping within the U.S. On Amazon, the price is about $220 (without Aurora Rhythm).
The expansion kit, which includes three additional panels, costs about $70 on Amazon.
Nanoleaf Rhythm Smarter Kit
Conclusion: is it worth it?
It’s true that the modular lights from Nanoleaf Aurora aren’t the classic style smart light bulbs that improve your day-to-day life. However, they do take your Smart Home to the next level. They’re more free, decorative and fun.
Nanoleaf Aurora isn’t a must-have device, but I bet that once you try them out, if you can afford to spend around $200, that you’ll want them, either in your house or your business. They’re blowing up with YouTubers and really are a lot of fun. They’re easy to install and manage through the app or with voice commands.

Easy to install and use
Beautiful lighting effects combined with music
Versatility and personalization
Voice commands from Alexa, Assistant, and Siri

And the cons? If I were being a bit picky, I’d say that some connectors are a little shoddy, and the price is a bit high, but just by a little. I say just a little because there isn’t much price difference between them and the kits from Philips Hue. The one big difference being that the Nanoleaf modular lights aren’t meant to be a light source like standard light bulbs. I think Nanoleaf has done a great job on these modular smart light bulbs. It’s true, they’re not essential, but they are really cool to have in your house, especially if they’re connected to an Aurora Rhythm.

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Apple’s widened ban on templated apps is wiping small businesses from the App Store

ollowing its Worldwide Developers Conference, Apple released updated App Store guidelines that included a new rule allowing it to ban apps created by a “commercialized template or app generation service.” The understanding at the time was this was part of Apple’s larger App Store cleanup, and the focus was on helping rid the marketplace of low-quality clone and spam apps. But things have since changed. A number of app-building companies that had earlier believed themselves to be in the clear are now being affected, as well.
Many companies have recently been given a January 1, 2018 deadline, after which point any new apps they submit will be rejected by the App Store Review team, they’ve been told by Apple. In the meantime, some have been able to maintain their existing apps, but it’s unclear how long that will last.

Example of Apple’s App Store rejection notices for rule 4.2.6.

Example of Apple’s App Store rejection notices for rule 4.3.
What’s unfortunate about the expanded policy enforcement is that these app makers specifically target the small business market. They build apps for businesses that don’t have the internal resources to build their own apps or can’t afford to hire a custom shop to design a new iOS app from scratch.
Instead, these companies help small businesses like local retailers, restaurants, small fitness studios, nonprofits, churches and other organizations to create an app presence using templates, drag-and-drop wizards and various tools to put together a more basic app that can then be customized further with their own branding and images.
These may not be the most-used apps, to be sure, but for the niche audiences they serve – say, for example, customers of a local pizza place that would rather have its own app rather than paying the fees associated with being on a food ordering platform like Seamless/GrubHub or Uber Eats – they serve a useful purpose.
As one app builder put it, the decision to limit these small businesses’ ability to compete on the App Store is as if a web hosting company said that they would no longer allow web pages built with WordPress templates or those made using website wizards from services like Wix or Squarespace.
Apple’s move, which appears to be blocking a large number of small businesses from the App Store, has now caught the attention of Congress.
In a letter dated December 1, 2017, Congressman Ted W. Lieu (33rd District, California) has asked Apple to reconsider its expanded enforcement of its 4.2.6 and 4.3 guidelines. The former bans the template-based apps while the latter is more of a catch-all for banning spam – a rule Apple is now using if it can’t prove that the app was built using some sort of wizard or drag-and-drop system.
“Recently, I was informed that Apple’s decision to more stringently enforce its policy guidelines regarding design and functionality may result in the wholesale rejection of template-based apps from the App Store,” wrote Lieu. “It is my understanding that many small businesses, research organizations, and religious institutions rely on template apps when they do not possess the resources to develop apps in-house.”
The Congressman suggests that Apple is now casting “too wide a net” in its effort to remove spam and illegitimate apps from the App Store, and is “invalidating apps from longstanding and legitimate developers who pose no threat to the App Store’s integrity.”

Above: Rep. Ted W. Lieu’s letter to Apple
The expansion of the policy has had a dampening effect on the industry that serves these smaller businesses.
One company, Shoutem, already shut down as a result, for instance. (Only a small team remains to support current customers.)
Explained Shoutem CEO Viktor Marohic, the company closed up shop a few weeks ago – a decision he attributes to the change to the App Store guidelines, combined with the challenges of operating a business in this space.
“The 4.2.6 was just a final drop that made us move on a bit faster with that decision [to close],” he said of Shoutem’s closure. “It was also a threat to our enterprise business, since it is hard to predict what Apple might do next. While we understand their intentions, the general approach that they took turned out to be quite unfair to our enterprise customers that actually built fully custom apps on top of our platform and do not share much of the code with other apps built on the platform,” said Marohic.

Another company affected by the rule is ChowNow, which designs apps for restaurants using components that allow them to have their own online ordering systems and loyalty programs.
ChowNow used to be an Apple favorite. In fact, the company was even quoted in Apple’s documentation regarding best practices for Apple Pay because it was one of the first companies to integrate Apple’s payments technology into its app-building platform.
But even ChowNow is being told by Apple that after January 1, things will change for them.

Above: How different can restaurant apps really be? Big brands vs. ChowNow (right) 
“There was no way in June [when the guidelines changed] that we would have said, ‘that’s going to target our apps,’” ChowNow CEO Christopher Webb told TechCrunch of how he first reacted to the news. “Apple had told us you aren’t being targeted by this from a quality standpoint. So being hit now under the umbrella of spam is shocking to every quality developer out there and all the good actors.”
Apple’s concern over template-based apps for restaurants, Webb added, also doesn’t make sense because “there’s only so much you can do with apps that perform the same utility – ordering food.”
Pizza apps, for example, will all tend to have photos of pizza, use red in their designs, and offer buttons for pickup and delivery.
In addition, ChowNow’s apps use 100 percent native code, while big brands like Pizza Hut and Domino’s contain web views.
Apple hasn’t sent out any large-scale communication to its developer community about the expanded enforcement of its rules. Instead, all conversations it’s having are one-on-ones with individual businesses. This allows it to more selectively curate its own list of “winners and losers” in terms of which companies will be targeted by the changes.
Not surprisingly, Apple’s partnership with IBM, which involves IBM building template-based apps for enterprise clients, is not impacted by the new rules.
The irony with regard to this situation is that Apple has taken a strong position on net neutrality, arguing that all businesses have the right to an open internet. Wrote Apple’s U.S. Vice President for Public Policy Cynthia Hogan in a letter to the FCC this August:

Broadband providers should not block, throttle, or otherwise discriminate against lawful websites and services. Far from new, this has been a foundational principle of the FCC’s approach to net neutrality for over a decade. Providers of online goods and services need assurance that they will be able to reliably reach their customers without interference from the underlying broadband provider. 

However, what Apple’s doing with its expanded ban of templated apps is the equivalent of preventing small businesses from being able to compete in the same ecosystem as the bigger brands. It’s the gatekeeper effectively creating a system that impacts the little guy by interfering with their ability to do business on the web – a web we increasingly access through native apps, not a browser.
According to 2017 data from Flurry, mobile browser usage dropped from 20 percent in 2013 to just 8 percent in 2016, with the rest of our time spent in apps, for example. They are our doorway to the web and the way we interact with services.

“Rule 4.2.6 is a concrete illustration of the danger of Apple’s dominant position,” lamented Jérôme Granados, of Goodbarber – a company that had fortunately invested in progressive web apps ahead of Apple’s changes. “This rule prevents many local newspapers, online media, NGOs, religious communities, sports clubs, local stores, schools, universities, local public administrations, and other actors with limited means, to count among their audience iPhone users,” he told TechCrunch.
Among these businesses’ frustrations is the fact that an App Store cleanup didn’t have to involve the wholesale removal of small businesses’ apps. Apple could have just unlisted apps from category pages to reduce the “clutter,” or only returned the apps in search results when customers type in more exactly matching names.
“We understand the need to clean up the App Store, but we feel Apple could have gone about it in a different way,” noted Bizness Apps CEO Andrew Gazdecki, who is transitioning his clients to progressive web apps, per Apple’s advice.
“We’re concerned that this rejection notice is problematic because what’s being called into question isn’t the quality of the app, but rather the way in which it’s generated,” Gazdecki said. The CEO yesterday set up a petition to plead with Apple to change its mind. Over 250 signatures have been added, as of the time of writing.
“They’ve wiped out pretty much an entire industry. Not just DIY tools like AppMakr, but also development suites like Titanium,” said Jay Shapiro, CEO of AppMakr, which now builds apps for international markets where Android dominates.

Above: The original version of the Official Lumineers app, built by AppMakr
We’ve also heard from one source that the change will affect other companies building apps, including MindBody (apps for fitness studios), eChurch and Custom Church Apps (apps for churches), Olo (apps for restaurants), Hopscotch (games), uCampaign (apps for Republican lawmakers) and others. [Hearing that Hopscotch may not be affected; others haven’t commented.]
“I’m sure that Apple has some business rationale for doing this, but they have just disenfranchised an entire ecosystem and none of us can really understand why,” Shapiro said. “There were much easier ways to fix their perceived problem.”
Apple has not responded to requests for comment.

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Destiny 2 Vanguards Throw Down in Rap Battle

The Destiny 2 community is truly something special. Amidst the chaos of a game that has been middling in its attempts to build on the good qualities of its predecessor, the dedicated Guardians who populate Bungie’s online servers day-in and day-out have been doing what they always do—producing some really cool content. Although the universe of Destiny 2 might be a little grim at times, its player base sure knows how to brighten things up, and YouTuber Dan Bull proved it in a big way recently with a good old fashioned rap battle.

The fully-animated battle features Zavala, the Titan Vanguard, rapping opposite the quirky Cayde-6 in a fun video that is equal parts a cipher and a rap battle. While Cayde-6 has been a fan favorite for years now, it isn’t often we get to see a lighter side of the usually stoic Zavala, and it’s a nice bit of fan-made content for a character who sometimes gets ignored in favor of Destiny 2‘s larger personalities. Check out the video below:

Given that the original Destiny was often criticized for being somewhat bland in the way it approached its cast of Guardians, it must be refreshing for developer Bungie to see its characters getting such elaborate fan-made content made in their honor. While Destiny 2 is improving, with attention being paid to in-game progression and monetization models, videos like Dan Bull’s help pass the time in between the title’s end-game content and its next major releases.

It’s not like Guardians aren’t used to seeing Destiny 2 seep into various other mediums outside of the video game world, either. Activision and Bungie have been aggressive in marketing the game as a multimedia offering, with recent partnerships like the one between Amazon’s Alexa and Destiny 2‘s Ghosts proving just how versatile the lore—and fan dedication—in Destiny 2 can be.

The high quality of Dan Bull’s video makes it stand out in a sea of talented content creators working on Destiny 2 content, and hopefully we see even more from him in the future. Could we see Ikora Rey or Lord Shaxx be the next to try their hands at a rap battle?
Destiny 2 is available now for PC, PS4, and Xbox One.

Source: YouTube

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Japanese firm to send overworking employees home by nagging them with music-blaring office drones

Since World War II, Japan has struggled with a work culture that consists of excessive overtime. To curb that behavior, one firm is planning to use drones that fly around the office blasting Auld Lang Syne to get employees to realize it’s time to go home.
The system, developed by office security and cleaning firm Taisei and telecom giant NTT, will see drones patrolling the office on a scheduled flight path. The drones will also record footages of what they see during the flight to identify employees who remain in the office after standard work hours.
“You can’t really work when you think ‘it’s coming over any time now,’” Taisei director Norihiro Kato told The Japan Times. Auld Lang Syne is typically played in Japanese malls to announce that stores are closing. Taisei will trial the system in April 2018, targeting a monthly fee of ¥50,000 ($450) for companies to use this service.
However, some experts say this is unlikely to solve the root problem.

“robotic harassment”

“Even if this robotic harassment gets workers to leave the office, they will take work home with them if they have unfinished assignments,” Scott North, professor of sociology at Osaka University, told BBC. “To cut overtime hours, it is necessary to reduce workloads, either by reducing the time-wasting tasks and tournament-style competitions for which Japanese workplaces are notorious, or by hiring more workers.”
Overworking in Japan is the cause of thousands of deaths in Japan annually — so much so that Japan has a word to describe this particular type of mortality: karoshi. A whitepaper released last year found that one in five Japanese work an average of 49 hours or longer each week, with most karoshi victims in their 30s and 40s. The victims die from various illnesses, such as heart failure, exhaustion, stroke, starvation, or suicide as a result of work stress and depression.
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Baker Mayfield, Lamar Jackson, and Bryce Love are 2017’s Heisman finalists

Mayfield will win, but Lamar Jackson and Bryce Love are incredible too.
The Heisman Trophy’s already been voted on. There are three finalists this year, which suggests the voting wasn’t all that close at the top. The Heisman is presented to the winner on Saturday at 8p.m. ET on ESPN.
Let’s meet the finalists:
Baker Mayfield, Oklahoma QB
He’s the guy who’s going to win.
“Heisman odds are currently off the board as Baker Mayfield is too big of a favorite,” Bovada publicist Jimmy Shapiro wrote in a release last week. “He was 1/20 last week and would be even bigger this week.”
Mayfield’s having a historically good season. He set the all-time FBS passer efficiency record with a 196.4 mark last year. This year, he’s at 203.8. He has national-high marks in yards per throw (11.8) and completion percentage (71), and Mayfield’s done it on a Big 12 winner and Playoff team.
He’s had some image problems this year: an offseason arrest for public intoxication and disorderly conduct, a flag-planting at Ohio State that made a lot of Buckeyes very sad, a pregame skirmish at Baylor in which he called himself Baylor’s daddy and said he would spank BU’s players, and a game at Kansas that included taunts of the crowd, a grab of his crotch, and much more. Some voters will hold those things against him.
But let’s not overthink this. Mayfield is the going-away favorite.
He had a casual four touchdowns in OU’s blowout win against TCU, punching the Sooners’ Playoff ticket and confirming himself as the winner.

Lamar Jackson, Louisville QB
Is at least as dangerous as ever. Has had a year even better than his Heisman-winning campaign of 2016, in some ways. But Louisville’s mediocre, and Mayfield had an absurd season on a winning team. Just remember that Jackson is awesome.

Bryce Love, Stanford RB
Gutted out a close Pac-12 Championship loss to USC, putting up 125 yards and a touchdown while much of the game broadcast focused on his ankle injury.
A brief sense of his season, which was spent piling up long runs after much of the East Coast had gone to bed:

Bryce Love has been running on one leg for over a month and has 2,000 rushing yards. He’s a bad mother.
— Rule of Tree (@RuleofTree)

Players who didn’t make the cut
All defenders, special teamers, and offensive linemen
It takes unbelievable numbers and probably some touchdowns anyway for anybody besides a quarterback, running back, or (also rarely) a wide receiver to make significant Heisman noise. Despite the “most outstanding player” de>
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West Ham United 1-0 Chelsea: Premier League – as it happened | Football

9.24am EST09:24

Full time: West Ham 1-0 Chelsea

West Ham win their first Premier League game under David Moyes! They deserve it for an admirable, some might say obscene, level of effort, and a beautiful early goal from Marko Arnautovic. Chelsea had so much of the ball but created hardly anything. West Ham are still in the bottom three but this win should give them so much impetus in their relegation battle. It might also be the day David Moyes’ managerial career got going again. Thanks for your company. You can follow the 3pm games with Simon Burnton, and a freshly baked match report will appear here shortly. Bye!

at 9.29am EST


9.21am EST09:21

90+3 min Fabregas swishes a half-volley high over the bar from long range. i think this is over.


9.20am EST09:20

90+2 min West Ham have taken the wheels off the bus, which is parked right on the edge of their own area.


9.18am EST09:18

89 min This, as Tom Jordan points out, is the kind of dirty, tough game Diego Costa would have loved. Chelsea have lacked a bit of mongrel.

David Moyes and Stuart Pearce animated on the sidelines. Photograph: Tony O’Brien/Action Images/Reuters

at 9.27am EST


9.17am EST09:17

87 min Obiang, on a yellow card, fouls Moses. The referee plays to advantage and doesn’t go back to book Obiang. That could have been a second yellow. Stuart Pearce, part of the West Ham support staff, hoofs the ball away to waste time and is sent to the dugout; then Masuaku is booked for timewasting.

at 9.17am EST


9.16am EST09:16

86 min “Hi Rob,” says Ross Jennings. “I seem to remember Chelsea time-wasting from a throw-in against Liverpool less than 1 minute in to the worst game of my footballing life (better remembered by Steven Gerrard’s trip) in 2014. Was a masterclass in winding up from José, and ultimately led to the tactical blindness that was having Gerrard as our last man at the back in the last minute of the first half. Bad times.”
The twisted thing about that game was that both Chelsea’s goals came in time that was added on because of their timewasting.

Eden Hazard reacts after another missed chance. Photograph: Tony O’Brien/Action Images/Reuters

at 9.25am EST


9.14am EST09:14

84 min Another Chelsea chance, this time for Hazard. He took Morata’s touch in his stride, moved into the D and blazed a left-footed shot high over the bar. It wasn’t as good a chance as Morata’s, though he should probably have worked Adrian.


9.13am EST09:13

83 min Morata misses a great chance! Kante, surrounded on the edge of the area, managed to force a through ball into Morata, who was played onside by Masuaku on the other side of the area. He turned smoothly but lashed a first-time shot wide of the near post.

Alvaro Morata shoots just wide. Photograph: Ian Kington/AFP/Getty Images

at 9.16am EST


9.11am EST09:11

82 min The West Ham fans are cheering every clearance now. Quite right too: this would be an immense victory, and probably a season-changing one.


9.09am EST09:09

80 min Antonio Conte looks resigned to defeat. It just hasn’t happened for Chelsea today.


9.07am EST09:07

78 min Antonio, who has put in a monstrous shift, is so shattered that when the ball goes out of play he takes the opportunity for a lie-down. Andre Ayew replaces him.


9.06am EST09:06

76 min “Hi Rob,” says Steven Hughes. “I’ve seen plenty of first half time-wasting at Ashton Gate this season. It’s the groovy new thing. Teams realise that that’s the half in which to add on time is deemed churlish when there’s a whole 45+ minutes to go: it tends to be two minutes at the very most so there’s free rein to time waste and break up play. Want a law change? Make all first halves end on exactly 45.00 and add everything on at the end. Not only would it be fair but it would inject most games with a new lease of life if there was the thick end of 10 minutes added on with 90 minutes on the clock.”
What about Robbie Savage’s blood-pressure levels though?


9.04am EST09:04

75 min Chelsea don’t look like scoring at the moment, although fatigue is likely to be an issue for West Ham because they have worked so hard. Hazard teases his way past Obiang and whacks a cross-shot that goes behind for a corner.


9.02am EST09:02

72 min West Ham are emplying a variation on Two Banks of Four. They have a Bank of Five and then a Bank of Three in front, and Chelsea can’t find an eye in the needle. Neither side has had a shot on target in the second half.


9.00am EST09:00

71 min “West Bromwich started to time waste in their match against Spurs at Wembley in the 15th minute,” says John Tumbridge. “That’s the fifteenth minute of the first half.”


8.58am EST08:58

69 min West Ham make their first change, with Diafra Sakho replacing the goalscorer Arnautovic. He’s had a terrific game.


8.57am EST08:57

68 min Fabregas’s free-kick from the right falls to Christensen, whose volley is brilliantly blocked by Reid.


8.56am EST08:56

68 min And now Cresswell is booked for a deliberate foul on Willian, just outside the area on the Chelsea right.

Aaron Cresswell takes down Willian. Photograph: Ian Kington/AFP/Getty Images

at 9.05am EST


8.52am EST08:52

63 min The impressive Masuaku charges forward to win a corner. West Ham’s attitude and controlled aggression have been outstanding in this game.


8.52am EST08:52

62 min Azpilicueta’s long-range shot deflects dangerously in the area, and Adrian reacts smartly to get there before Morata. For all Chelsea’s possession, they haven’t created much at all. West Ham’s narrow defence have given them very little space to work with.

at 8.53am EST


8.51am EST08:51

60 min “Hello Rob,” says Andrew Benton. “What do you think about sponsorship by betting companies – I see one sponsors West Ham. Clearly bad for your health if it gets out of hand, and not much good even if it doesn’t, is it likely to go the same way as cigarette sponsorship? Seems inappropriate to me, however much the companies promote responsible betting.”
Yes, I know what you mean. It doesn’t really bother me but I’m surprised, in the current climate, that more questions haven’t been asked about it.


8.48am EST08:48

59 min I wonder what’s the earliest bit of timewasting in a football match. Has anybody ever had a jaunty saunter to the corner flag in the first half?

This time it is Eden Hazard who has his shirt pulled by Winston Reid. Photograph: Darren Walsh/Chelsea/Getty Images

at 8.55am EST


8.47am EST08:47

58 min Adrian is booked for timewasting. In the 58th minute.

at 8.47am EST


8.47am EST08:47

58 min Zappacosta cuts in from the left and whips a curling cross-shot that bounces just wide of the far post. I think Adrian had it covered.

at 8.47am EST


8.46am EST08:46

57 min Chelsea try a training-ground free kick: Fabregas slides it into the area for Moses, whose attempted cross is blocked. That was a bit of a waste.

at 8.46am EST


8.45am EST08:45

56 min Obiang fouls Morata 30 yards from goal, and then Cresswell boots the ball against Morata as he rolls over. Chelsea are getting more and more frustrated.


8.44am EST08:44

55 min Another Chelsea change: Victor Moses replaces Marcos Alonso. Zappacosta moves to left wing-back.


8.44am EST08:44

54 min Arnatutovic’s touch hits the outstretched hand of Christensen just inside the box, prompting huge appeals for a penalty that are turned down by Anthony Taylor. I’m not sure Christensen knew much about that, though they have been given in the past. His arm was away from his body.

Marko Arnautovic and Michail Antonio appeal for a penalty. Photograph: Tony O’Brien/Action Images/Reuters

at 8.52am EST


8.41am EST08:41

52 min Fabregas stoops to head Zappacosta’s cross towards goal, and Ogbonna makes another vital block. Chelsea are all over West Ham like a cheap cliche.

at 8.42am EST


8.40am EST08:40

51 min West Ham break through Arnautovic and Antonio, who delays his through pass a fraction too long. Arnautovic is flagged offside, and Courtois saves his shot anyway.


8.39am EST08:39

50 min Fabregas manufactures a clever cutback on the turn that is crucially cleared by Cresswell.


8.38am EST08:38

49 min After a long spell of Chelsea possession, Pedro volleys a dropping ball well wide from long range. This is going to be a never-ending second half for West Ham.


8.37am EST08:37

48 min “Hi Rob,” says Kevin Ryan. “Hope all good with you. Why on earth are Chelsea wearing that kit? Is it because the light blue sleeves of the Hammers are deemed to clash with Chelsea’s normal Royal blue? In which case don’t their white shorts clash with West Ham’s. Or is it just down to having to wear the second/third choice strips for the kit manufacturer’s filthy lucre? Strange.. However it does at least give me the chance to cackle and say ‘The whites, Dude.’”

(NB: Clip contains adult language)


8.34am EST08:34

46 min Peep peep! West Ham begin the second half.

at 8.35am EST


8.34am EST08:34

Chelsea have made a half-time substitution: Pedro is replacing the subdued Tiemoue Bakayoko.


8.19am EST08:19

Half time: West Ham 1-0 Chelsea

Peep peep! West Ham end a stirring half with a passing move that is accompanied by olés from the home crowd. They lead through Marko Arnautovic’s high-class early goal – and though Chelsea have had an intimidating amount of possession, Adrian has had only one really difficult save to make. See you in 10 minutes for the second half.


8.15am EST08:15

45 min Masuaku, who has put a serious shift in at left wing-back, wins another corner for West Ham. Morata clears at the near post.


8.14am EST08:14

43 min West Ham have restored a bit of calm after a torrid 20-minute spell. They still won’t say no to half time, though.

Michail Antonio challenges Thibaut Courtois. Photograph: John Walton/PA

at 8.23am EST


8.11am EST08:11

40 min The tireless Antonio harasses Courtois into a panicked clearance that goes behind for a West Ham corner. Nothing comes of it, but Masuaku wins a second corner moments later.


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Every year, the alternate uniforms for Army vs. Navy are awesome. But whose have been better?

These teams’ll look good on the field, but who’s looked the best over the last few seasons?
Army and Navy have a storied college football rivalry, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be spruced up. That’s exactly what Nike started doing in 2008 — right around the time it introduced its Pro Combat uniform — with some special threads.
The addition of various alternate uniforms to the traditional pageantry has brought another unique aspect to an already unique game.
The 2017 set is gorgeous.
Navy’s 2017 uniforms are inspired by the Blue Angels.

Are you ready for ? will be wearing Blue Angels-inspired uniforms for the 118th Army-Navy Game!
— Navy Athletics (@NavyAthletics)

“This tribute to the Blue Angels reflects the enthusiastic pride and appreciation we have for the Navy’s premier flying team and the motivation they convey to Navy football and the fleet at large,” Navy AD Chet Gladchuk said. “The masterminds at Under Armour are always thinking of ways to inspire our troops while still reflecting a deep appreciation for a Naval history that is so ingrained in our game day traditions. Annually, a special Navy uniform has become a statement in this game and brings with it appreciated meaning and a clear message that we are all in.”

And Army’s draw from the World War II Pando Commandos. Those dudes were badasses:

These soldiers trained at 9,200 feet to learn to fight, and survive, in the most brutal mountain conditions. Bill Bowerman, who would eventually go on to co-found Nike, organized the supplies and maintained the mules for the 10th Mountain Division as a Major in the Army, serving at the time as the commander of the 86th Regiment’s First Battalion.

Via Army Athletics

The dueling alternates weren’t consistent at first.
Army wore digital camo pants in 2008, while Navy wore uniform patches with a nod to the Marine Corps:

It was just the start of what would become tradition. In 2009, Army stayed with its normal look, and Navy brought back its 2008 set for the game:

Again in 2010, Army stayed traditional while Navy did its own thing:

Photo by Hunter Martin/Getty Images

As with everything Army-Navy, it’s about competing. So let’s pit the uniforms against each other.
In 2011, Nike started giving both teams a Pro Combat set for the game.
The ‘11 designs weren’t too outlandish, particularly for Army, which had piping added to the sleeve as the most ostentatious part of its look along with a stencil patterned design to the uniform number:

Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images

Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images

Verdict: Navy.
The Midshipmen’s full blue look really made the patches pop, and lets me get over the meh helmets that year.
In 2012, Army being able to wear black as the designated home team was big.
It gave their uniforms some added pop because black and gold always looks so good as a uniform combination. The contrast of the gold on the black really made the Black Knights’ set shine that day:

Photo by Hunter Martin/Getty Images

Photo by Hunter Martin/Getty Images

Verdict: Army. This particular black and gold is hard to pass up on. Edge to the cadets.
The 2013 game featured snow, so the uniforms were always going to look cooler because that’s what happens when you play ball in the snow.
It does seem that Navy’s uniforms always had a bit more going on with their sets than Army’s did. More piping, louder colors, and even a three-tiered helmet. Army’s are cool, but what’s going on with the gray?

Verdict: Navy. The helmet was great in 2012, and without a black-and-gold combo to compete against, it wins.
The 2014 game had a new variable in the equation.
Hello, Under Armour. UA was able to sign the Midshipmen athletic program to a 10-year deal, and the Maryland-based apparel giant pried them from the swoosh:

Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images

Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images

Verdict: Navy. The stripes. I’m not gonna sit here and ignore those stripes.
In 2015, Army and Navy started getting wild with the helmets.
And we were all the better for it. Navy patterned its lids after different naval vessels and, woo buddy, am I ever in love with these bad boys:

US Naval Academy

Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images

Army went with a matte finish. One side had a uniform number, and the other side had the division of the Army each cadet would serve in upon leaving school:

Army West Point

Photo by Elsa/Getty Images

Verdict: Navy. I must admit some serious angst about this decision. I adore Navy’s helmets because of the matte finish alone and the fact that there are 17 different looks vs. only seven for Army’s. But I gotta side with Navy again by a nose because those things just pop.
In 2016, Navy went all in on the yellow.
The semi-throwback to 1963’s team unis was a curious choice, and the color was loud on the uniform.
The one awesome thing about the uniforms was the stars on the helmet, signifying each year Navy had beaten Army on the field consecutively. A light flex over your rival is always appreciated:

Fans, here are ’s designed “Beat Army” uniforms for this year’s Game!
— Navy Athletics (@NavyAthletics)

Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images

And Army leaned heavy into the all black as a nod to paratroopers:

Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images

Verdict: Army. That blacked-out Army look is too good. And the Black Knights won the game in epic fashion to end the streak and knock the stars off those Navy helmets, to boot.

As for 2017?
I’m a sucker for the white-on-white-on-white look. Give me the iced-out look over everything:

Army’s uniforms for the Army-Navy game are really dope ALSO THERE’S A SKIING PANDA ON THE CLEATS
( : )
— SB Nation (@SBNation)

Verdict: Army. Can’t wait to see who’ll look good singing second.

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Samsung Galaxy S9 90% Screen-To-Body Ratio Will Be From Hardcore Body Slimming

Paul Briden

08/12/2017 – 3:39pm

Samsung's Galaxy S9 will have a very high screen-to-body ratio, but it'll come from trimming the bezels

We’ve seen some reports that the Galaxy S9 will allegedly have a near 90% screen-to-body ratio, which has lead to a lot of speculation about how this will be achieved.
Some have suggested Samsung may be looking to up the display ratio even higher than the current 18:9 trend (18.5:9 on the Galaxy S8 series), with a proposed 21:9 aspect ratio possibly accounting for the high screen-to-body ratio.
According to a new report, however, this is not the case. An insider source, who is said to have a good track record for Samsung-related details, is cited by as saying that they have found information to suggest the higher screen-to-body ratio will be achieved by Samsung thinning the edge bezels down even more on the Galaxy S9.
The screen size and ratio itself, will apparently not be expanding, but Samsung will trim and shave off as much of the bodywork bezel as it can for the new flagship. The result, if you can imagine it, is that you’ll basically be holding a display panel in your hand with a back panel cemented to it. This does, however, raise the question of whether Samsung will follow Apple’s example of introducing a display notch for the front-facing camera and other sensors usually housed in the top bezel.

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