The iGrill App

The igrill appSummer is on its way, and with it comes many special events to look forward to: vacation, camping, swimming, family reunions, etc. For some of us, the one thing we look forward to isn’t a special event at all, it’s an everyday event that’s been around for generations: grilling. Ah yes, on the back porch, deck, or patio is where grillers spend most of their free time in the summer months.

 

Even though it’s a tradition that’s been around for generations, grilling itself has come a long way. The trial and error of the past of buying a grill, taking it home to try out, and then returning it for another model if you don’t like it is gone. The internet has allowed people to share information so they can be better consumers. Sites such as gas grill reviews takes the legwork out of finding the best grill for your needs. They provide reviews for gas, charcoal, and electric grills, as well as other types, so you know the pros and cons of grills on the market and can find what best suits your needs.

 

The old-school charcoal barbecues grills with three legs – two of which are wheels – and a spiral cover lined with tin foil still work great. So do the gas grills with the rusted out metal and wooden shelving on the side to hold your tongs, but technology has progressed to make those old grills even better. No longer is running back and forth to check your meat, or not leaving the grill’s side, a must to keep your food from burning. Now all you need is a small device, a cell phone, and your thumb to keep track of your food’s progress.

 

The iGrill

 

Do you ever have those days where you’re watching a game, doing a load of laundry, or someone comes knocking at the door while you’re trying to get the meat on your grill just right? You no longer have to fear those distractions as iDevices Inc has created the iGrill.

The iGrill is an electronic thermometer that connects to your phone using Bluetooth – for those of you unfamiliar with the term, it’s just a fancy way to say no wires – technology. All you have to do is download the iGrill app (which is free), let the app know what kind of food/meat you’re tracking, insert the probe into the meat, then pull up the app and watch the temperature from your phone. You will receive an alert when your meat is ready to turn or serve. It’s really that simple.

 

Positives

 

This is great for folks who have a lot going on in the house. Parents will love it because they can tend to the kids without fear that the meat will burn. It’s also very practical if you’re cooking meat on the grill while cooking other food on the stove. It’s also nice to have if there’s something on TV you’re watching live and don’t want to miss like a baseball game or news program. If you purchase the iGrill2, you can use up to four probes at once, which is much more practical when cooking for a family.

The devices are also relatively cheap, all things considered. They range from $39.99 for the iGrillmini, to $99.99 for the iGrill2. The probes look to be pretty durable as well, as they can measure temperatures from -22o F all the way up to 572o F. They can also withstand up to 700 degrees of direct contact before breaking down.

 

Negatives

 

As with most electronic devices, you will need to purchase extra accessories. The iGrill2 comes with two probes, but if you want the maximum of four you will have to buy the other two at $24.99 each. The iGrillmini, however, comes with just one probe and cannot house any more than that. It is also on backorder right now on idevicesinc.com.

 

If you’re a person who loves to grill but finds themselves pulled in every direction, the iGrill could be for you. It makes multitasking much easier, and give you a real time temperature readings of your meat. Just be prepared to purchase extra accessories as the devices come with the bare minimum. And if you’re in the market for a new grill, be sure to check out the reviews do a little research on the basics before purchasing.

The Top 5 Best Fitness Tracking Software Programs

sports fitness apps

When it comes to getting in shape, some people need a little bit extra help by using workout supplements including testosterone boosters like these, or pre workout supplements like these here. Other people seem to want to like the technology side better, and use apps that will motivate them and keep them working hard to shed pounds or stay in the gym. And while not everyone can afford a personal trainer or someone to create their own personal meal plan, technology affords people the opportunity to still find great fitness programs and routines. Here are the top five best fitness tracking software programs that come on a variety of different platforms.

Endomondo Sports Tracker

One great thing about fitness programs is that they allow people to come together to root for each other and share their personal fitness goals. And one app that does that incredibly well is Endomondo Sports Tracker. This app will let you track a variety of different activities, including cycling, running, jogging and more. You can then access your online profile and let others know what you are doing. It’s a great community that offers plenty of other resources to help you reach your goals.

Fitbit Flex

Fitbit is one of the top activity trackers currently on the market. The band itself will run you almost $100, but once you have it, you’ll get an incredibly comprehensive outline of where your fitness levels are at. You’ll also get insight into your sleep patterns, which can help you further understand why your body does certain things. The Fitbit software works on both Windows and Mac computers, as well as Android and iOS phones.

VidaOne Diet and Fitness

Old computer programs are a bit outdated when you consider mobile devices and wearable technology. However, VidaOne Diet and Fitness is a program that is worth loading up on your computer. You get to add unlimited amounts of profiles, which makes it great for you to include all the members of your family. And there are also over 8,000 items to choose from for food. You’ll have a hard time finding a more comprehensive diet program over VidaOne.

Nike+ FuelBand

If you don’t like the feel of the Fitbit Flex, another option is the Nike+ FuelBand. One great thing about this is that you can pair it with your Nike shoes, in order to get a very detailed description of your physical exertion. The Nike+ FuelBand also lasts almost a complete week on a full charge, so you won’t be having to plug it into a charger all of the time to get your vitals tracked.

Fitocracy

What better way to end a list of top programs, then with a free option in the form of Fitocracy. This app is another social media one, but it’s resources may be a bit deeper than Endomondo. And, better yet, Endomondo doesn’t require that you have a fitness band for it to work. Instead, it still uses the social media element to help you get motivated and working towards your goals.

There are plenty of resources out there for fitness fanatics. But while some options may be a bit more demanding in terms of when and where you have to be somewhere, these apps and programs let you go at your own pace to still reach the goals you’ve always dreamed of.

Shaving Tech…Seriously!?

So we’ve recently been discussing mustaches, beards, and all other forms of facial hair in the office ever since Bill came in with some wicked chops. You don’t see chops like this any more, I’m telling you – he looked like a Civil War soldier!

OK not quite as cool as the original, Ambrose Burnside, but he’s definitely trying to bring something back.

Anyway, since we got talking, we decided to look up some beard tech stuff and see what the heck is out there on the market.

Turns out, there are some really basic models like you might expect to find in your drug store for like $20, but there are also a couple of fancier ones that deal with your facial hair like something out of Star Trek!

Anything stand out as super high tech?

Well, you’ll have to be the judge of our decision to list these ones.

Philips Norelco Beardtrimmer Series 9000

Remember sharks with frickin’ laser beams attached to their heads?

Yeah, those ones. Well, Philips Norelco loved that bit so much that they made a beard trimmer with a frickin’ laser beam attached to it! This thing is insane.

The truth is, though, it is pretty much useless. I mean seriously, your face is hardly ever in a perfectly straight line with the razor so how could you follow the line the whole way, imagine how much slower a trim would be, and plus, like, seriously? You need a laser to tell you how to make a straight line?

Guys who do this every day or even every week will get pretty good at cutting their beard without a laser level attached to the freaking thing. And it’s about $100, so one of the most expensive ones we’ve found.

It’s really probably not worth your time, unfortunately. Ok it IS kind of cool!

So what else is worthy, then?

Philips Norelco QT4070 Vacuum Trimmer

Yeah so what is it with PN throwing together beard trimmers with other random gadgets? Lasers…vacuums…what’s next?

The good thing is, though, this is a pretty slick unit.

It’s quite a bit cheaper than the laser one above, but still more expensive than many of the other models out there. That’s OK though, because it actually delivers.

It’s got quite a few settings for different lengths which is a pretty huge deal. It has a power boost button to cut through that deadly multi-day growth, and yes, it has a vacuum that sucks up the hair to make your sink and bathroom less messy – and it kind of works!

Unlike the laser, this one at least kind of makes sense, and works about 90% of the time (doesn’t catch all the hairs, but really, did you expect it to?). It’s a pretty solid unit and we think that if you are into tech and need to cut that ol’ beard of yours, you should definitely check it out, it’s the one we all liked the most (yes, ha ha this is an office for an online publication and we all have beards…I can hear you snickering “hipster” between sneezes).

So there you have it! Our tech picks for trimmers. Head on over to our choice for the top tech SITE in the space, Beard Guide to get the best reviews of these items and buy one today!

Top 2 Windows 8 Tablets

When looking for tablets, many consumers aren’t looking for a larger version of their smartphone, but a portable version of their computers. The simplest way to complete this goal is to run the same Operating System as the one you have at home. You will be able to use the same programs and interface that you have gotten used to already with your paperweight computer. This being said, Windows tablets give you everything you expect with Windows 8, plus the desired mobility – the reason you’re looking at tablets in the first place.

Even knowing the operating system you want to run, there are still so many options to choose from. Many manufacturers are choosing to run Windows 8 on their hardware, and the game changes from software to evaluating hardware. To properly review any type of technology, you should match the price to the physical components that come with it. Everything in life is relative, so is deciding which Windows 8 tablet to purchase.

For your convenience, we’ve reviewed these two customer favorite tablets for you.

Dell Venue 8 Pro

770px-Dell_LogoDell’s Venue 8 Pro really straddles the line between tablets and smartphones with its smaller 8 inch screen, but when put to the test it delivers the full tablet experience. Compare the following specs with your current smartphone and you’ll see why the price jumps and the experience is completely different.

A quick rundown: The Venue 8 puts out an impressive 8 hours 31 minutes battery life, a decent 1.34 GHZ processor speed, 2 GB RAM and 32 GB of internal memory.

For an affordable price, around $300, the components are within the range of reason and expectation. This is an entry-level tablet that will get you average performance at a wallet friendly MSRP. It has a simple, no frills design and can perform all your basic PC operations.

Sony VAIO Tap 11

sony_by_aloschafix-d4k2dalAt an MSRP of 1099.99, buyers will assume that they’re bringing home a real workhorse of a tablet. Similarly priced computers, such as the macbook pro 13’’ start to look like a better decision, but there are still pros to buying the VAIO Tap 11 – especially if you need to work on Windows 8 for work or school.

Of considerable notoriety is this tablets extremely slim profile, paper-cut range of .39 inches, and large screen, 11.6 inches. It also comes with 128 GB storage and a 1.5 GHz processor speed. All of this paired with 4GB RAM, and you actually are getting a mini computer minus the attached keyboard. There is only one real tradeoff for this powerhouse and that is how much power this beast can drain at an unfortunate rate. The VAIO Tap 11 taps out at only 4 hours battery life. As a portable device, four hours isn’t that much time for much and can get hectic when you’re not around a plug for a while, especially when heavy use will cut into that number significantly.

Are Windows phones any good?

The Struggle is Real

I’m sure you’ve noticed that the mobile market is getting crowded with many promising options available under a number of different carriers. You have iPhones, Androids and Windows phones to choose from, or you can wait a few years for the Linux option to come out. But, like most people, you are online searching for the right device to put in your pocket. A mobile that you can commit to for a two year contract and won’t feel like dead weight in half that time..

Windows phones are the newest players to enter the mobile community, and many consumers aren’t yet familiar with how they operate. That’s why we’re going to run through the pros and cons of Windows phones, so you can make the right choice when it is time to buy.

In Review

Microsoft’s slogan and pitch to get you to buy is “Meet the world’s most personal smartphone.” The personal touch is the niche that they’re attempting to fill.

Hardware

You can get a number of their phones in multiple color options. They tend to favor the bright and assuming shades. So, if you like people noticing your phone then picking a bright and vivid case might be a load of fun while shopping. The case and design of Windows phones tend to be slightly more innovative than its competitors.

As the Windows phone website tells us, imaging is put before all other features. If video and picture quality is important to you then Windows should be your first choice. On top of an analog picture button that most newage smartphones lack, preferring the use of the touch screen, Windows phones come pre-installed with software for your camera, such as lens filters.

When deciding on your hardware preference for your next mobile phone, Windows leads in diversity and camera quality. You may want to do more research on specific phones for exact differences in memory, processor speed, graphics, etc. A slightly older Windows phone isn’t going to outperform the latest iPhone on any stress tests, but it might be good enough for your price range or expectations.

Software

When you think of software on a mobile phone, two categories come up – Interface and Apps. Take a look at a Windows phone and the unique interface should be apparent. Basically, if you like working with Windows 8 on pc then you’re going to love it on a mobile interface. The Windows 8 OS (operating system) was made with the mobile / tablet market in mind and is optimized to that end. A fun feature that you will be using a lot is customizing your start screen.

Some people won’t enjoy the limited aesthetic choices Windows brings to the table, as you’re stuck with the scrolling tile interface. But the ability to pin anything from a website to a widget is the perfect way to optimize the way you use your smartphone.

Any Good?

Though it really comes down to personal preference, Windows Phones are quite good and are appealing in their own unique ways, compared to other smartphones. If you’re looking for a more customizable phone that puts a heavy focus on its camera then buying a Windows smartphone is a no brainer.

And finally…

Here’s a video comparing one to the iPhone. Enjoy!