Ben Patterson

Senior Writer

Ben has been writing about technology and consumer electronics for more than 20 years. A PCWorld contributor since 2014, Ben joined TechHive in 2019, where he covers smart speakers, soundbars, and other smart and home-theater devices.

Wink relents, delays mandatory switch to paid subscriptions indefinitely

Wink relents, delays mandatory switch to paid subscriptions indefinitely

Wink’s about-face comes two weeks after its abrupt announcement that users would need to pay a subscription fee to continue using its smart platform.

Netflix to automatically cancel subscriptions for long-dormant accounts

Netflix to automatically cancel subscriptions for long-dormant accounts

Netflix says it hopes to save people “some hard earned cash” by canceling the subscriptions of those who haven’t streaming in more than a year.

Samsung’s 2020 soundbar lineup to be offered for sale starting this month

Samsung’s 2020 soundbar lineup to be offered for sale starting this month

First revealed at CES, Samsung’s latest high-end soundbars work together with the speakers on Samsung TVs.

Samsung’s new Terrace 4K QLED TV is designed for the great outdoors

Samsung’s new Terrace 4K QLED TV is designed for the great outdoors

The first outdoor TV from Samsung boasts an IP55 rating and up to 2,000 nits of brightness. A matching Bluetooth soundbar is on the way, too.

You can pre-order Lenovo’s $399 Smart Frame for half-price ahead of its August launch

You can pre-order Lenovo’s $399 Smart Frame for half-price ahead of its August launch

First spotted at CES, the upcoming digital photo frame syncs with Google Photos, and you can swipe through images with a wave of your hand.

Logitech unveils HomeKit Secure Video-enabled Circle View security cam

Logitech unveils HomeKit Secure Video-enabled Circle View security cam

This $160 follow-up to Logitech’s Circle 2 will support HomeKit Secure Video as soon as it ships.

Hands-on: HP Elite Dragonfly, the first laptop with an integrated Tile tracker

Hands-on: HP Elite Dragonfly, the first laptop with an integrated Tile tracker

The HP Elite Dragonfly will be an easier laptop to track, thanks to its embedded Tile module.

D-Link to yank IFTTT support for older smart home devices by the end of the year
Updated

D-Link to yank IFTTT support for older smart home devices by the end of the year

Some of D-Link’s older and discontinued smart plugs, cameras, and sensors will lose IFTTT integration in December.

How to make your Google/Nest smart speakers, displays, and cameras listen for suspicious sounds

How to make your Google/Nest smart speakers, displays, and cameras listen for suspicious sounds

Thanks to Google’s new Nest Aware plans, Google Home and Nest devices can now keep an ear out for the sounds of smoke alarms and breaking glass.

Best cheap laptops: We rate the best-sellers on Amazon
Updated

Best cheap laptops: We rate the best-sellers on Amazon

If you have $500 (or less), we've found the best cheap laptops on Amazon and Best Buy. The ones that give you the best bang for buck. Keep reading to find our top picks.

Bang & Olufsen’s second-generation Beosound A1 Bluetooth speaker gets onboard Alexa

Bang & Olufsen’s second-generation Beosound A1 Bluetooth speaker gets onboard Alexa

The latest version of Bang & Olufsen’s luxurious Bluetooth speaker comes with built-in Alexa, along with a lighter design and aptX Adaptive support.

Kangaroo’s $20 Doorbell Camera lets you keep an eye on your doorstep
Updated

Kangaroo’s $20 Doorbell Camera lets you keep an eye on your doorstep

Kangaroo’s $20 Doorbell Camera is one of the cheapest smart doorbells we’ve ever seen, although its functionality is limited.

Sony's 3.1-channel HT-G700 soundbar boasts Dolby Atmos and DTS:X support

Sony's 3.1-channel HT-G700 soundbar boasts Dolby Atmos and DTS:X support

This new mid-range soundbar from Sony delivers object-based Dolby Atmos and DTS:X audio without the need for upfiring drivers.

5 ways to improve your relationship with Google Assistant

5 ways to improve your relationship with Google Assistant

Learn how to change the sound of Google Assistant’s voice, teach it your nickname, make your conversations flow better, and more.

Spotify’s Group Session feature lets your friends control your music queue

Spotify’s Group Session feature lets your friends control your music queue

Once you've created a Group Session, your friends can take charge of your Spotify tunes in real time.

Wyze cam users can now tap a button to summon help

Wyze cam users can now tap a button to summon help

A new button within the Wyze app lets you contact an emergency response center if you see something suspicious on your Wyze cam.

The $100 Ring Video Doorbell gets a feature-packed upgrade, finally

The $100 Ring Video Doorbell gets a feature-packed upgrade, finally

The second-generation Ring Video Doorbell boasts better video quality, privacy zones, and an additional “near” zone, all for the same $100 price as the original model.

Google will switch on mandatory two-factor authentication for Nest accounts this month

Google will switch on mandatory two-factor authentication for Nest accounts this month

If you haven’t already locked down your Nest account with two-step authentication, Google will do it for you starting in May.

Rumors point to a new Sonos Playbar with Dolby Atmos, plus refreshed Play:5 and Sub

Rumors point to a new Sonos Playbar with Dolby Atmos, plus refreshed Play:5 and Sub

Is a new HDMI-equipped Playbar finally about to happen?

Polk Audio’s $250 Signa S3 soundbar boasts Chromecast audio support

Polk Audio’s $250 Signa S3 soundbar boasts Chromecast audio support

The new 2.1-channel soundbar from Polk Audio can be grouped with other Chromecast-enabled speakers.

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