What Type of Exercise Is Best for the Brain?

Image result for What Type of Exercise Is Best for the Brain?Exercise is just as good for the brain as it is for the body, a growing body of research is showing. And one kind in particular—aerobic exercise—appears to be king.

“Back in the day, the majority of exercise studies focused on the parts of the body from the neck down, like the heart and lungs,” says Ozioma Okonkwo, assistant professor of medicine at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health. “But now we are finding that we need to go north, to the brain, to show the true benefits of a physically active lifestyle on an individual.”

Exercise might be a simple way for people to cut down their risk for memory loss and Alzheimer’s disease, even for those who are genetically at risk for the disease. In a June study published in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease, Okonkwo followed 93 adults who had at least one parent with Alzheimer’s disease, at least one gene linked to Alzheimer’s, or both. People in the study who spent at least 68 minutes a day doing moderate physical activity had better glucose metabolism—which signals a healthy brain—compared to people who did less.

The brain benefits of exercise go beyond disease prevention. Okonkwo has also shown that people who exercise have greater brain volume in areas of the brain associated with reasoning and executive function. “We’ve done a series of studies showing that increased aerobic capacity boosts brain structure, function and cognition ,” he says, “Other people have found exercise can improve mood.” Okonkwo’s research has also shown that exercise can diminish the impact of brain changes on cognition, not just prevent it. “Exercise is the full package,” he says.

Exercise likely improves brain health through a variety of ways. It makes the heart beat faster, which increases blood flow to the brain. This blood delivers oxygen—a good thing, since the brain is the biggest consumer of oxygen in the body. Physical activity also increases levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), which i s known to help repair and protect brain cells from degeneration as well as help grow new brain cells and neurons, says Okonkwo .

In one study. Joe Northey, a PhD candidate at the University of Canberra Research Institute for Sport and Exercise in Australia, showed that when people ride a stationary bike, they experience increased blood flow to the brain, and within that blood are a range of growth factors that are responsible for cell growth and associated with improved brain function. “Considering exercise can also reduce the risks associated with common lifestyle diseases that impact the brain, such as high blood sugar and hypertension, it is further motivation to try to incorporate exercise as part of a healthy lifestyle,” says Northey.

MORE: The Simple Reason Exercise Enhances Your Brain

Aerobic exercise, like running and swimming, appears to be best for brain health. That’s because it increases a person’s heart rate, “which means the body pumps more blood to the brain,” says Okonkwo. But strength training, like weight lifting, may also bring benefits to the brain by increasing heart rate. The link between resistance training and better brain health is not as established, but research in the area is growing.

For now, Northey recommends a combination of the two. “Combining both is ideal,” he says, for all of the other benefits exercise bestows on the body. “In addition to improving your brain function, you should expect to see improvements in cardiorespiratory fitness and muscle strength, as well as reducing the risk of obesity, diabetes and hypertension amongst other diseases.”


Hands-on: Microsoft Teams brings the best and worst of Office to team-building

Microsoft’s Teams provides Office 365 subscribers various ways to collaborate and share information across teams.

Credit: Mark Hachman

Microsoft’s Teams app reinvents communication and collaboration in a way that’s typically Microsoft: tons of features, numerous options, with some of that complexity unfortunately pushed onto the user.

The obvious product to compare Teams to is Slack, which I use daily, or HipChat. Within Teams, users can chat in groups or one-on-one, share files, communicate via Skype video calls, and even interact with bots and third-party apps.

By the way, if you thought Microsoft Yammer was Microsoft’s answer to Slack, you’re wrong. Yammer provides an “enterprise social scenario,” according to Teams corporate vice president Brian MacDonald, while Teams is oriented around one-on-one and group chat. So there.

Microsoft Teams

Mark Hachman

The way Teams organizes information only allows for a topic or two in the main chat window. You’re expected to use the left nav bar to keep track on topics you can’t see.

Teams dives deep, and quickly

Microsoft’s demonstration dove right into the deep end of the app, which is available in a Customer Preview for Windows 10, Mac OS, the web, and all three major mobile platforms. It’s part of the Office 365 Enterprise and Business offerings, and is included with your existing paid subscriptions. (If you have a relevant subscription, ask your IT admin for access.) Microsoft isn’t charging extra for perks like message retention, so your chats will be archived for as long as your IT administrator chooses to keep them.

My initial reaction: “Whoa, this is a little much.” Teams throws a lot of information at you, though its basic UI isn’t that complicated. But it’s the way in which you actually interact with colleagues that becomes…well, Microsoft might call it rich, while others might call it complex.

All of the action takes place in a vertical column of “conversations” that dominates the screen, organized by a series of tabs along the top and in the lefthand rail.

Microsoft Teams

Mark Hachman

A closer look at the left nav bar of Microsoft Teams.

To the far left are a column of icons that control your view: Activity, Chat, Teams, Meetings, and Files. During the demo I found little difference between the Activity and Teams views, because the majority of interactions in Microsoft’s demo took place between members of the same fictional team.

Both Slack and Teams use superimposed numbers to indicate whether there are direct messages or other actionable items that you need to respond to. One of the key differences I saw between Slack and Teams is that Slack places one-to-one chats and group conversations on the left rail, simultaneously; Teams breaks this up into separate views.

Next, there’s a vertical column of contacts and bots you can chat and collaborate with, as well as a tab for any notifications that Teams has sent you – whether a contact has replied to a message, for example. Teams uses bold highlighting to indicate a group, task, or contact that requires your attention, as well as slide-in notifications.

Microsoft Teams

Mark Hachman

Versions of Teams will be released on all major mobile platforms by the end of this week,Teams corporate vice president Brian MacDonald said.

At the top of the page is a horizontal list of tabs that organizes your activities in yet another matrix: conversations (chats), sharing files, and OneNote notebooks, and then any interactions with third-party plugins that your IT administrator may have enabled, such as Zendesk tickets.

Chatting: GIFs and more

Once you’ve figured out whom to chat with, it’s time to begin chatting. Teams uses a threaded model for chat, which means that any “topic” can be replied to with additional comments. How you prefer your conversations to be handled can be somewhat personal. Threading allows conversations to stay on topic, though it may sometimes force participants to hopscotch around. As the screenshots indicate, Microsoft’s default view typically results in having a single threaded topic dominate the screen, though Teams also appears to collapse the conversation if it grows too unwieldy.

Microsoft Teams

Mark Hachman

The Teams notifications settings menu.

Teams keeps you up to date on the various conversations via various Windows 10 slide-in notifications, or red exclamation-point tabs that sprout from conversation topics. That’s a bit worrisome, because the Notifications settings menu doesn’t seem to allow you to prioritize conversations. Some employees enjoy a steady stream of chatter, while others want to tune out anything that’s not directly related to a task at hand.

Like Skype, Teams allows you to carry on conversations with bots, including its own Teams bot, creatively named “T-bot.” For now, T-bot serves as a sort of glorified helper bot, providing tips on how to format messages, for example. Teams bots can be built on the Microsoft Bot Framework, so expect to see more of these soon.

Currently, you can’t open a chat or collaborate with anyone outside the company. Teams corporate vice president Brian MacDonald said that capability will be added soon.

Microsoft Teams

Mark Hachman

If you need to, Teams can quickly create a group video chat using Skype.

Each message can be replied to using plain or rich text, or emoticons—and yes, there’s Giphy support built in for the right GIF at the right time. You can also attach files, and that’s where you can see the Teams’ complexity issue begin to rear its head.

Sharing files: Office’s bread and butter

If you form a group, each group receives a SharePoint workspace to share files. If you collaborate on a OneNote note, that file will be stored there. Ditto for PowerPoint presentations and third-party files, too.

If you’ve already bought into Office’s collaborative message, though, the SharePoint space in Outlook Groups doesn’t carry over, McDonald said. (If you’ve formed a Group in Outlook, Teams will suggest the same group but won’t automatically create it, MacDonald said.) That means that you could be working on shared document within Outlook that you might not have access to via Teams. It sounds like Microsoft will forge stronger ties between its Office apps over time, though, and use Delve’s handy file-finding capabilities to discover what you’ll need.

Microsoft Teams

Mark Hachman

Third-party apps can be integrated within Teams, and some of them look quite nice.

To add to the confusion, there won’t be a UWP version of Teams for the Windows desktop, even though the Windows Mobile version of the app will be a UWP app. In contrast, a bread-and-butter product like Word has a UWP app to complement the Win32 versions of Office on Windows 10. Microsoft’s goal, MacDonald said, is to create “one hero experience” across all desktop platforms, but we’re not quite there yet.

Facing off against Slack and HipChat

It’s too early to tell whether Teams will offer any compelling advantage over Slack or Hipchat? I’d need to start fresh with Teams, tracking real conversations and collaborations. MacDonald says the company’s beta customers have welcomed the depth of interaction. If that’s true, then there may be an untapped market itching to migrate off the minimalist interfaces of Teams’ competitors into something richer.


Why Home Delivered Meals Are the Best

Life is busier than ever and people are always on the go. Adults do not find the time to cook nutritious meals or visit their favorite restaurants anymore. Individuals are running after productivity and, therefore, they cram as much as possible into the allotted 24 hours. While being career-driven is not a bad thing, the importance of health cannot be ignored. This is where home delivered meals come into focus.

You can now have chef made and nutritionist-approved meals delivered at your home. This is an efficient and nutritious approach to the problem as now there are companies that cater your needs with ready-made meals. Over the last few years, this service has gained popularity. People rely on chef-made home delivered meals because it is simple and easy. It allows them to skip cooking but does not compel them to give up to unhealthy eating habits.

One of the most important information to consider is that these modern-day home diets are delicious. A talented team of chefs works together to arrange creative menus. They source fresh ingredients and prepare dishes that are good for health and appealing to the taste buds. In addition, they attempt to make presentation of the products enticing.

There is something for everyone. You may be a vegetarian, a carnivore with a good appetite for steaks, allergic to gluten, or lactose intolerant. These companies have customizable dishes for everyone. If you have any dietary preferences, inform the company. If you take weekly or monthly packages from them, you do not have to mention the details every time.

The very high nutrition content of the dishes delivered is widely celebrated by regular customers. Dietitians and nutritionists meticulously experiment and taste the food and check whether it positively contributes to your diet or not. If you make these meals a lifestyle choice, you do not have to worry about excess fat and cholesterol anymore.

In fact, these are great for anyone trying to lose weight. There are low-carb, low-fat or low-calorie options. You no longer have to worry about portion control or calorie count as it is already taken care of by the company. The best things about the ready-made diet mealsare that they are thoroughly tested by experts. You can now devour the food without worrying about weight gain.

Instead of spending hundreds of dollars at the gym, portion control can help reduce a lot of weight. You no longer have to worry about overeating as a particular amount of food is delivered each time.

You do not have to spend extra time on grocery shopping, cooking, and cleaning. You can order food whenever you are hungry. You may even set up an on-going contract with the company and save some money.

As the name suggest, home delivered diets have become so popular simply because they are delivered at home. It provides convenience. If you are one of those people who does not have any time to shop or cook, the service is ideal for you. Pick up your phone and dial the food delivery service. Older people or people with special needs, who cannot cook for themselves, are highly benefitted by this healthy diet.

The meals are very similar to microwave meals. They are fast and hassle free, but much more nutritious. These have become as common as pizza delivery and it is revolutionary for individuals of all age.

Delicious chef-made home delivered meals are just the best. They offer restaurant quality food at the comfort of customer’s own home, while also keeping the nutrition requirements in mind.

Doctors Grapple With Best Use Of Potent New Cancer Drugs

Doctors Grapple With Best Use Of Potent New Cancer Drugs

COPENHAGEN: Evelyn O’Flynn still has lung cancer. But after going straight on to a new immune system-boosting drug more than a year ago, rather than traditional hard-to-tolerate chemotherapy, she is feeling great.

“It’s like a miracle,” said the 72-year-old ex-smoker, who is about to become a great-grandmother.

As a patient being treated with Merck & Co’s immunotherapy drug Keytruda, O’Flynn is one of the lucky ones.

Data presented at the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) congress suggest her early treatment with immunotherapy, as part of a clinical trial in Britain, will become standard for a growing number of patients.

But there is a catch: it doesn’t work for all.

Giving immunotherapy on its own only seems to work better than chemotherapy in previously untreated lung cancer patients who have high levels of a protein called PD-L1, which makes them more receptive to immunotherapy.

From now on, oncologists in Copenhagen have been told, lung cancer patients should be routinely tested for this biomarker.

However, only a quarter to a third of non-small cell lung cancer patients have tumours with at least 50 per cent of cells producing PD-L1, leaving the majority unserved and around 70 percent of the market still up for grabs.

The inability to treat everyone with monotherapy using one single drug is a blow for Bristol, which tried to make treatment with its Opdivo drug work across the board, only to fail comprehensively in a major clinical trial.

But it has opened up the field to rivals like Merck, Roche and AstraZeneca, which own what could be among the biggest-selling drugs of all time, and all companies are now racing to find smart ways to combine treatments.

Oncologists poring over immunotherapy trial results at Europe’s biggest cancer meeting have learnt one thing: finding optimal treatments for different patient groups will take more research.

“I think the future of immunotherapy will be defined over the next 10 or 15 years,” said lung cancer specialist Solange Peters from Lausanne University Hospital, one of the organisers of the Copenhagen meeting.

Despite immunotherapy successes and the prospect of a potential market worth up to $40 billion in sales, veteran cancer experts urge caution.

“In oncology, we see these kind of waves from cosmic pessimism to over-optimism, so we have to be cautious,” ESMO President Fortunato Ciardiello said.

Investors, though, were quick to position themselves as shares in Bristol fell 10 per cent in early trade on Monday, while Merck hit its highest level since 2001.


By taking the brakes off the immune system and allowing the body’s natural killer cells to home in on tumours, immunotherapy offers a different approach to toxic chemotherapy treatment, which causes collateral damage to healthy tissue.

It is not without side effects but it is a kinder option, which also promises much longer-lasting efficacy.
Bristol, Merck and Roche have US approval for immunotherapies, while Bristol and Merck also sell their drugs in Europe. China, however, has yet to licence them.

Lung cancer, the world’s biggest cancer killer with an annual death toll of 1.6 million, will account for by far the largest portion of future prescriptions, although immunotherapy is used additionally in melanoma, Hodgkin lymphoma and cancers of the bladder, kidney, head and neck.

With Merck set to sweep the board in lung cancer monotherapy, doctors are looking to the next phase of the story and there is a growing consensus that combination treatments are the future for remaining patients with lower PD-L1 levels.


What are the best ways to pick the best Wedding Ring?

Image result for What,are,the,best,ways,to,pick,the,best,Wedding,Ring

You’ve picked the engagement ring of your dreams, now you have to select a ring that compliments your choices. Choosing a wedding ring that matches your style and informs the world I’m taken and this rings shows it!” is no simple job, specifically considering that there are many different choices today. To contribute to the difficulty is the have to find a ring that looks simply as gorgeous as your engagement ring.

For the Guys

Men are not used to using rings or fashion jeweler for that matter so the idea of using a wedding ring terrifies them. For some men it is other and uneasy men are concerned the ring might look not manly or girly enough. , if careful consideration takes place there must be no issue in finding a product that works with your active way of life and fits with your character.. Today there is a large selection of metals choices and designs readily available and you make certain to find a one that will please all your needs.

One option you might think about is purchasing your choice with a convenience fit. When using the ring while making the ring more long lasting, this will offer a soft smooth feel. Producing a small dome utilizing metal on the within the ring where the finger is put forms a convenience fit. This dome softens the edges of the ring so absolutely nothing goes into the finger; it likewise avoids much of the metal on the within the ring from being available in contact with the finger.

For the Gals

You’ll have much time to fantasize and gaze about a wedding band as similarly gorgeous as the ring he proclaimed his love for you with once you’ve ended up being engaged. Our experience informs us that bride-to-be’s extremely concerned about finding a best match and will not choose anything that will subdue the engagement or detract ring. It is vital that you pick something that has comparable style components as your engagement ring and fits perfectly against it. Today’s styles can be quite intricate which is terrific however it develops the issue of finding a perfectly matched band.

Technique – Choosing a band that looks excellent with your ring

If you’ve received a ring that has numerous diamonds or has a unique and intricate special you special have elaborate a style finding might band. In an effort to get your choice to mesh you might select a contoured ring, or a wrap. A contoured ring is a band that has been specifically created to carefully curve to the contoured profiles these day’s most popular engagement ring designs. Check out more at Micro Pave Engagement Rings.

Then you might desire to think about some of the more valuable metals offered, if you do not work with your hands or you do not believe you’ll harm the ring. White gold, yellow gold, platinum, and palladium provide a much richer appearance than the hard metals. Because they are more flexible and simpler to craft, you’ll likewise find a much greater choice of wedding ring designs to pick from in the valuable metal family. Because of the valuable metal content, you’ll likewise have the included advantage of acquiring a product that is more important.

Man’s Best Friend? It May Be Genetic

Man's Best Friend? It May Be Genetic

Experts shocked, as new trick saves online shoppers thousands in India (Madbid.com)
Man’s Best Friend? It May Be Genetic
Photo for representational purpose only.
If you think dogs are drawn to your winning personality then think again — the attraction may be genetic, according to a study released Thursday that pinpoints genes linked to inter-species amity.

Providing food and playing fetch, of course, also forge strong bonds.

But experiments involving several hundred dogs, and a sweeping analysis of their genomes, uncovered a handful of genetic variants clearly linked to canines being friendly with humans.

The same genes, it turns out, help govern sociability in our species, and are implicated in neurological problems ranging from autism to ADHD.

“Our findings suggest that there may be a common underlying genetic basis for social behaviour in dogs and humans,” senior author Pers Jensen, a professor of ethology at Linkoping University in Sweden, told AFP.

The first domesticated dogs — some 15,000 years ago — were probably wolves that had grown accustomed to the presence of humans in their habitat, most experts agree.

Since then, man’s best friend has continued to evolve, a process likely influenced by our intimate co-habitation.

Indeed, one of the ways in which dogs diverged from wolves was by developing an innate tendency to seek our companionship, earlier research has shown.

Several experiments, for example, compared the behaviour of puppies and wolf pups raised as family pets. The baby wolves were taken from their mothers at about eight weeks old.

When confronted as adults — in the presence of humans — with so-called “impossible tasks” that they could not resolve, the dogs and socialised wolves behaved quite differently.

“In general, dogs had a strong tendency to solicit human help, whereas wolves” — even those raised as pets “did not,” said Jensen.

Jensen and colleagues performed a similar test with more than 400 beagles born and raised in a kennel that produced animals for laboratory tests.

Importantly, all the animals came to maturity under the same conditions and with the same level of human contact.

In the experiments, each beagle tried to lift clear plastic lids off three bowls in order to get an edible treat below.
– Looking At Wolf Genomes –

The first two tests were easy, but the third lid was impossible to move.

The researchers recorded the dogs’ reactions, especially to what extent they turned to a person in the room, as if to seek assistance.

The next step was to examine the DNA coding of each dog’s genome to look for matches between its behaviour in the experiment and specific genetic variants, or mutations.

Jensen and his team found five genes that correlated strongly with the dogs most inclined to seek human help — the same genes related to sociability in humans.

The two that stood out the most are known as SEZ6L and ARVCF.

It is still unclear exactly how these genes exert on influence, or whether they are simply markers of some other process as yet undetected. That’s a very difficult question to unravel.

There is another puzzler, however, that can be resolved: did these genetic variants evolve during the domestication of dogs, or have they been there all along?

To find out, Jensen is now sequencing the genes of wolves to see if they have the same variants.

If they don’t, it would strongly suggest that these “sociability genes” arose recently.

But it is also possible, he said, that the first wolves to join the community of humans had precisely the same mutations that may have made some of the dogs in the experiment more likely to nuzzle up to a two-footed friend.

“My gut feeling is that there is the same kind of gene variations in the wolf population,” Jensen said.

The kennel, by the way, went out of business, which means that all the beagles found homes, he added.


Best Bluetooth speakers

Best Bluetooth speaker

There was a time when Bluetooth speakers were like jelly beans: They were cheap, they all looked the same, and they were invariably of dubious quality. Times have changed. Every major audio manufacturer has at least one model on the market today, and most have several. If you haven’t listened to a Bluetooth speaker lately, you’re in for a very pleasant surprise.

But the industry’s progress doesn’t mean that every Bluetooth speaker justifies its price tag, no matter how inexpensive it might be. There’s still plenty of dreck floating around. Don’t worry, we’re here to help you steer clear of the junk and point you to the best speakers at the price range that fits your budget. To that end, we’ve picked the best Bluetooth speakers in four broad price ranges: budget, mid-range, high-end, and–yes, there are ultra-high-end Bluetooth speakers–price is no object.

Our reviews go into some depth, so we encourage you to follow the links to read them in their entirety. You’ll also find a guide to the most-important features you should look for in your next Bluetooth speaker, as well as links to the rest of our latest Bluetooth speaker reviews, at the bottom of the page.

Our recommendations will change over time as new products come in for testing.


  • Best budget Bluetooth speaker: Aukey SK-M12
  • Best mid-priced Bluetooth speaker: Creative Sound Blaster Roar 2
  • Best high-end Bluetooth speaker: Bowers & Wilkins Zeppelin Wireless
  • Price is no limit Bluetooth speaker: Naim Audio Mu-so
  • Features to look for in a Bluetooth speaker

Best budget Bluetooth speaker: Aukey SK-M12

You might not be familiar with the brand, but you won’t complain about the feature set or the quality of sound this little portable speaker puts out. You can use it as a speakerphone; it has a threaded mount hole so you can attach it to a tripod or clamp it to your bicycle’s handlebars with a third-party accessory; and it’s weatherized to withstand the elements.

About the only feature it’s missing is the ability to operate in tandem with a second SK-M12 to deliver stereo sound. But for the price—and the sound quality—that’s a limitation we can live with.

Budget-priced runner-up: Altec Lansing Lifejacket III

The Altec Lansing brand is as storied as the Aukey brand is unfamiliar. Risk-averse readers might prefer our runner-up pick in the budget category, even if the Lifejacket III does cost twice as much as our top pick.  Another point in Altec Lansing’s favor: The manufacturer gives this speaker an IP67 rating, which means it’s immune to dust ingress and can withstand being fully submerged in up to one meter of water for 30 minutes.

Best mid-priced Bluetooth speaker: Creative Sound Blaster Roar 2

Creative’s speaker isn’t as portable or weatherproof as some of its competitors in this or other price ranges, but it might be the most versatile Bluetooth speaker at any price. Not only can you pair it to smartphone with a tap (provided your smartphone supports NFC), but you can hardwire it to your computer and use it as a digital-to-analog converter and speaker, bypassing your computer’s noisy electronics.

This speaker can pull music from a USB storage device, a microSD card, or an analog audio source. It supports the aptX codec and in addition to operating as a speakerphone, its mic canrecord your phone conversations using either its onboard mic or a Bluetooth connection. We call it the Leatherman of Bluetooth speakers.

Mid-priced runner up: Ultimate Ears Megaboom

Here’s another Bluetooth speaker that can withstand the elements. The Ultimate Ears Megaboom boasts an IPX7 code, which means it’s rated to withstand submersion in up to three feet of water for a full 30 minutes. But it doesn’t make this list for that reason alone. This speaker delivers sound that will fill the typical backyard. It doesn’t have all the versatility of the Roar 2 described above, but it will be the life of the party.

Best high-end Bluetooth speaker: Bowers & Wilkins Zeppelin Wireless

Bowers & Wilkins has never failed to impress us, but they’ve long been associated with Apple having entered the all-in-one speaker market with the Zeppelin iPod dock. That changed with the third-generation Zeppelin, the Zeppelin Wireless, which lost the physical dock in favor of Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and Apple’s AirPlay technology.

B&W didn’t stop with Bluetooth. They also opted to support the aptX codec to deliver the highest quality audio that Bluetooth is capable of delivering. And if you’re a Spotify subscriber, you’ll appreciate this speaker’s support for Spotify Connect. The one down side: B&W stubbornly refuses to develop an Android app. But that’s a minor inconvenience that will bug you only when during first-time setup.

High-end runner-up: Mass Fidelity Core

The product of an incredibly successful crowd-funding campaign, Mass Fidelity’s Core wowed us with it uncanny ability to produce a stereo image no matter where you’re sitting—or standing—in the room. This speaker is also incredibly powerful for its diminutive dimensions, and you can add a wireless subwoofer if you want more low end. You can also wirelessly network up to eight Cores for a multi-room audio system, though Apple fans might be disappointed to learn that AirPlay is not supported.

Price is no limit Bluetooth speaker: Naim Audio Mu-so

You should expect a lot at this price, and Naim Audio doesn’t disappoint. This speaker is larger and more powerful than B&W’s Zeppelin and like that speaker, it gives you just about every option you could ask for: Bluetooth, of course (with both Android and iOS apps), but also Wi-Fi, AirPlay, hardwired ethernet, a USB port, 24/192 support, Spotify Connect, aptX, optical digital input, and multi-room audio support with other Naim components. And the sound? Exquisitely precise.

Features to look for in a Bluetooth speaker

Not convinced the picks we’ve listed above are exactly right for you? This guide will help you sort through the facts, figures, and specs to determine which speaker will best meet your needs. Your first decision will be to choose between mobile and stationary form factors. The majority of Bluetooth speakers are portable because they get paired with mobile phones, but more and more manufacturers are introducing models designed to remain inside the home.

Choosing a portable model gives you the best of both worlds in some respects, but a stationary speaker is more apt to blend into your home’s decor. And while we’ve heard some pretty spectacular portable Bluetooth speakers, a plug-in model is more likely to produce the sound you’re looking for if fidelity is priority one in your book.

Here are the features you’ll want to evaluate in a Bluetooth speaker:

The iOS and Android app gives you additional functionality such as EQ, an alarm clock mode, and pair

Theo Nicolakis

App support: Companion apps can provide lots of additional features to a speaker that wouldn’t be possible with just physical buttons on the speaker itself. The app might enable more than one person to be the DJ, queuing up songs to play on the speaker. An app might enable you to create customized EQ curves for different styles of music, create wake-up alarms, or power the speaker on and off remotely.

aptX support: Bluetooth audio must be squeezed down in order to stream over the airwaves, and the default codec use lossy compression that throws some of the musical data away. Qualcomm’s aptX codec is lossless, so none of the musical detail is lost in the process. But aptX must be present at both ends of the stream, in the playback device and in the speaker. Most Android devices support aptX, but Apple devices do not.

Battery: Next to fidelity, a portable speaker’s most important feature is how long it can operate when it’s not plugged into the wall. You should expect a battery to last 10 to 20 hours, but remember that the bigger the battery, the heavier the speaker will be.

Sound Blaster Roar 2

Michael Brown

Charging options: If your speaker has a battery, it will need to be charged. Speakers that charge their batteries via a USB port are more convenient than models that require an AC adapter, but larger batteries might not offer that option. Some speakers also let you plug in a USB cable to tap their battery to charge your smartphone.

DSP: An onboard digital signal processor (DSP) lets you electronically change how the speaker is driven in order to compensate for speaker placement or the acoustical properties of your room, among other things.

Mounting options and accessories: A portable speaker should be easy to take with you. While some Bluetooth speakers count on their size to make them easy to grip, others provide a lanyard, carabiner clip, or a shoulder strap. It’s even more handy when the manufacturer provides standardized sockets and accessories for mounting the speaker to an object, such as your bike’s handlebars.


Altec Lansing

Some portable Bluetooth speakers are small enough that you can grip them in your hand, but it provide thread mounts so you can attach them

Speakerphone: Some Bluetooth speakers have built-in microphones that enable you to use the speaker as a speakerphone in concert with your smartphone. The sound quality will be much better than what you’ll get from your phone, and you’ll be able to turn the volume up much higher. This can be very handy for conference calls.

Stereo pairing: Some speakers let you create a left/right stereo pair with two speakers (this works best, of course, when the two speakers are identical).

Weatherization: Portable Bluetooth speakers can be used indoors and out, so the best models provide some protection from the elements. Ideally, the manufacturer will let you know just how much protection you can expect by providing an IP (International Protection) marking. The first digit rates the enclosure’s protection from particulate matter (e.g., dust) and the second digit rates its protection against liquids.

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An IP64 code, for instance, indicates that the speaker is completely protected from dust (6) and from water splashed onto it (4). The higher the numbers, the more protection you can expert If either digit is replaced by an X—IPX4, for example—the code indicates that the speaker isn’t rated for protection from particles (this doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s not protected from things like dust, just that the manufacturer doesn’t rate its protection).

Wi-Fi: Higher-priced Bluetooth speakers also provide the option of connecting to your Wi-Fi network, so that you can stream music from a NAS box. Wi-Fi streams will offer higher fidelity than Bluetooth, even if the speaker supports the aptX codec. A speaker that provides for a hardwired network connection is all the more versatile.

Wireless range: A Bluetooth speaker’s range depends on the power class of its radio, and it can vary widely and is impacted by the environment that it’s operating in. A Class 1 radio offers range of approximately 100 meters, but the number of walls between the Bluetooth source and the speaker and the type of materials in those walls will have a significant impact on range. It’s much easier for radio waves to pass through drywall than masonry, for instance. Objects in the signal path, such as large metal appliances, will reduce that range even further


The best online backup service for securely encrypting your data

keys ring of old antique keys stock

Many people resist backing up their data to an online backup service like MozyHome, Carbonite, or Backblaze because they worry their data will be poked through by company employees, hijacked by criminals, or provided to law enforcement or government agents without due process.

The sanctity of your data boils down to whether the encryption key used to scramble your data can be recovered by anyone other than yourself. Below I outline the various methods and levels of encryption that can be employed by these services, and then evaluate six of the best options for home users. Several give subscribers full control of their encryption. If you’re already using a service, it’s possible you can even upgrade to take advantage of greater ownership options.


  • Choosing the services to evaluate
  • Backblaze
  • Carbonite
  • CrashPlan
  • iDrive and MozyHome

Choosing the services to evaluate

These are the parameters I set up for this roundup:

  • Focused on services that offer a personal edition, where you can purchase an account for a single computer or a bundle for a family
  • Included services that are established or well-reviewed.
  • Excluded services that offer scant information about their security and encryption practices. Subscribers should always be privy to how their data is protected.
  • Excluded sync services, even those (like SugarSync) that offer continuous backup and versioning. I define a sync service as one that doesn’t encrypt data with a per-user key before being transmitted over a secure connection. That also leaves out Box, Dropbox, iCloud, Google Drive, and others.
  • I also bypassed services that offer bad advice about file retention or security practices, and ones whose information is years out of date.

Six companies remained after this winnowing: Backblaze, Carbonite, CrashPlan, iDrive, MozyHome, and SpiderOak ONE. Keep reading to see how they rate on encryption features and strength.

Encryption: The ins and outs

Internet-hosted backups have several points of failure where encryption can protect a user’s data. I evaluated the services on each of these points:

Key possession. Encrypted backups require someone to create and possess the underlying key that’s used to encrypt your data before being stored by the host. But there are several aspects to this:

  • Who creates the encryption key? In all six cases, the native desktop backup software handles key creation, but with two services, you can opt to create a key.
  • Does the backup host hold the key in a form it can directly access, or in “escrow,” where it’s protected by a passphrase you set and the host doesn’t know? Or does the host never hold the key at all?
  • Is the passphrase converted through an algorithm into the actual encryption key, or is the passphrase used to unlock the encryption key? In the former case, an attacker who recovers the passphrase also effectively has the key, and can decrypt your backups.

If a backup service lets you reset your account password without losing access to your archives, it has full access to the encryption keys that guard your backups. If it can’t access your files’ contents (and sometimes even the listing of files) unless you enter your password or a custom key, you retain control.

Diversity of keys. Each service varies in whether it uses a single key for all backups, or various keys for different tasks. For instance, CrashPlan uses the same encryption key to scramble all backed-up files across all sessions; Backblaze generates a new key for each backup session; SpiderOak ONE has unique keys for every folder, version, and individual data block within its backups, partly to enable a group encrypted sharing option.

The more unique keys are used, the less risk you face from a single leaked or cracked key, or from advances in cryptographic cracking.

Encrypted before transit. Hosted backups require native apps to scan drives for files and transmit them. Strong encryption should be used by the app before files are transferred to a hosted service.

Encrypted in transit. It’s vitally important that transferred data is strongly protected separately from the encryption that wraps data before it’s sent. That’s to guard against offline attacks, where someone can intercept encrypted data and then attempt various ways to break it, both now and in the future. Encryption that’s unbreakable in 2016 may still break in the future.

Protected at rest. Even encrypted data needs additional layers of security. Some hosts disclose additional information about how they safeguard your data, including certifications and audits from third parties.

Restoring files. When you restore a backup, there’s also a question of where the key winds up. Even for services that allow a user to create a custom full encryption key, that key has to be transmitted to the backup host in a form that can be decrypted in order to restore files.

With all that in mind, we evaluated the following services from Excellent to Poor, summarizing their best and worst points in the pros and cons that follow each rating. For services that offer multiple ways to set up security and privacy, I’ve ranked based on the best method available, as outlined in the section above.


Encryption rating: Very good


  • Data is encrypted before and in transit
  • Website lets you access encrypted backups
  • Platforms: OS X, Windows, iOS, Android


  • Password is transmitted for recovery
  • Lacks a client that can restore and browse with local encryption keys
  • Unique keys can be unlocked with passphrase for master key

Backblaze uses public-key cryptography—the same kind of encryption used widely across the internet, including web connections with SSL/TLS cryptographic protocols. The app creates a public-private key pair and transmits the private key to its servers. For each backup session, Backblaze creates a new strong session key, and uses the private key in the key pair to encrypt it and send to its servers. The key is only stored in memory on the client and never stored in the clear at the server.

online backup encryption backblaze

An optional Private Encryption Key protects your encryption key, even though it’s stored on Backblaze’s servers.

However, you can opt to set a passphrase to encrypt the private key before it’s transmitted to the server. In that way, this master private key and each session key are held in escrow. Only someone with the passphrase can access the private key, which in turn can decrypt a session key that restores data associated with a backup session.

Backblaze has engineered its system so that restores all happen via its website, not in the native computer app, so you have to enter that passphrase to decrypt the private key. The passphrase is also required for viewing information about backups through its website and mobile clients. The private key is also held only in memory on its servers and dumped when file browsing and restore operations finish.

This isn’t ideal. Backblaze falls short of other backup services by not offering a client that can handle restoring and browsing with encryption keys kept entirely locally. And while each backup session has a unique key, the fact that all can be unlocked with knowledge of the passphrase used to protect the master private key makes that less impressive. In practice, you’re more secure if you never restore files or browse lists.


Encryption rating: Excellent on Windows, Poor on Mac


  • Data is encrypted before transit with Private Key encryption for Windows users
  • Website lets you access encrypted backups (only through Auto option)
  • Platforms: OS X (limited), Windows, iOS, Android


  • Data is encrypted before transit with Private Key encryption for Windows users, but not with Auto Encryption (Mac users’ only choice)
  • Mac users get a server-side key that’s stored on the server

Carbonite is a mixed bag. It offers only Windows users the opportunity to passphrase-protect a private key. Mac users rely on a server-side key that’s generated and stored there. Worse, Carbonite doesn’t encrypt Mac users’ data before transmitting it with its default Automatic Encryption option; it encrypts only on the receiving end. That’s not the case with what it calls Private Key under Windows.

online backup encryption carbonite

Carbonite allows only Windows users to turn on advanced backup settings and set a private key that the company never accesses.

Because encryption happens on the far end, restored files are also decrypted before being transmitted back to a Mac user. Carbonite should step up and provide Private Key for Mac users, as the current situation doesn’t meet the bar for robust protection for backups or restores.


Encryption rating: Excellent 


  • Data is encrypted before and in transit
  • Password is not transmitted for recovery
  • Website lets you access encrypted backups
  • Platforms: OS X (Java app), Windows, Linux, iOS, Android, Windows Phone


  • The archive key reset via reminder question is not a secure method
  • CrashPlan for Home requires a Java app, with security, reliability, usability issues

Code42’s CrashPlan offers three distinct options for setting up password and key control:

  • Standard: At the basic level, Code42 maintains on its servers an encryption key generated by its backup app. Your password manages access to the account as well as tasks like adding computers, using mobile clients, and restoring files.
  • Archive key password: The CrashPlan client generates a key, but you set a separate passphrase to encrypt the key, which is then stored in escrow at CrashPlan’s servers. You can upgrade from Standard to Archive without dumping existing backups. The archive key can be changed. There’s even an option to add an archive key reset with a reminder question. This reduces security enormously, however, because it effectively means your easier-to-remember answer is now the weakest link in accessing backups. I recommend against using it.
  • Custom key: You generate a lengthy key in one of several methods that’s never stored in any fashion at the Code42 servers. This custom key option is unique among services surveyed—all others rely on either a key generated by the app, which a user may be able to escrow at a server, or use an algorithm to convert a passphrase into the encryption key. If you switch from standard or archive key, your previous data is dumped, and you can’t downgrade encryption of newly archived files.
online backup encryption crashplan

You can choose among three kinds of archive encryption with CrashPlan. Custom Key keeps all information firmly in your hands.

CrashPlan can decrypt files entirely via its native app. The archive key or custom key need only be entered when restoring files via the web interface, or viewing files via the web or the mobile apps.

CrashPlan for Home still requires the use of a non-native Java app, something that’s been a security, reliability, and usability sticking point for its customers for years. Even its business services have moved to native apps. Java has many known security issues, but CrashPlan relies on it for a self-contained app, rather than any web-based interaction.

iDrive and MozyHome

online backup encryption idrive encryption key copy

Even though it says you’re setting an encryption key, you’re really entering a passphrase that iDrive converts into the key used to protect your data.

Encryption rating: Fair 


  • Data is encrypted before and in transit
  • Password is not transmitted for recovery
  • Website lets you access encrypted backups Platforms: OS X, Windows, Linux (iDrive only), iOS, Android


  • Passphrase conversion carries some risk

These two separate services work in nearly an identical way. Both let a user create a passphrase—iDrive inaccurately calls it  a “private encryption key”—which is transformed through a cryptographic algorithm into a 256-bit encryption key.

When you use this option, neither the passphrase nor the resulting key gets transmitted to the service. Both iDrive and MozyHome also admirably handle decryption in their respective clients without sending the passphrase or key to a remote server.

online backup encryption mozy decrypt mac

MozyHome lets users set a key for encryption, but requires use of standalone software (shown here) to decrypt restored files.

Even though the key is never sent (good), this passphrase conversion approach is weaker (bad) than a passphrase that locks a separate encryption key. That’s because an attacker only needs to obtain your unencrypted passphrase or break it through brute force to have access to your key. With that, if they can obtain your backup archives from the services or capture them in transit somehow, they can decrypt.

While that scenario sounds unlikely, there have been exploits in the past that allow crackers to break encrypted data transmission. When a passphrase locks a separate encryption key, an attacker might need to obtain your account name and password and the passphrase, and then would either have to break into the backup service’s systems or log in directly and use the backup service’s interface to retrieve files, leaving a trail.

SpiderOak ONE

Encryption rating: Very Good 


  • Data is encrypted before and in transit
  • Password is not transmitted for recovery
  • Website lets you access encrypted backups
  • Highly granular shared secure data areas
  • Platforms: OS X, Windows, Linux, iOS, Android


  • If you want to share files or use the website, you have to enter the password

SpiderOak ONE is a bit of a hybrid between the iDrive/MozyHome and Backblaze approaches, and its sole method is highly secure—there’s no account password-only default tier.

With SpiderOak, you create a password in the desktop client, and the software derives many, many encryption keys from that. The password is never stored or transmitted to SpiderOak, but the keys—generated uniquely for each data block of the backup, each folder, and each file revision—are wrapped in a layer of encryption and stored on the backup servers.

online backup encryption spideroak

By default, SpiderOak uses strong encryption for all backups; there’s no option to set.

This is because SpiderOak offers highly granular shared secure data areas, which require storing encryption keys on its servers in such a way that permission can be granted to multiple accounts to access files and folders. The same key can effectively be available to different users without storing it in such a way that SpiderOak (or a third party) can gain access.

In normal backup and restore operations, your password is never sent or used by the SpiderOak servers. However, if you want to share files, use the website for access, or use mobile clients, you have to enter the password to unlock access. As with other services, the keys generated from the password are stored in memory only while being used, and then flushed.


The best messaging apps with end-to-end encryption

There is a growing consciousness about the desire to keep one’s messages private. Some are concerned about hackers, or worry about the government spying on them, but most people just agree with the general principle that what you say in your chat conversations ought to stay between you and the people you chat with.

It’s not a pleasant idea to think that your messages could be archived for perpetuity on a large company’s server or analyzed by some algorithm. The quest for privacy has birthed a whole generation of apps that promise to give you exactly that. Services like Telegram and Signal have turned the phrase “end-to-end encryption” into a popular discussion. We’re here to help you figure out what this is all about and which apps to try.

A little background on encryption

Before we look at some specific apps, here’s a very brief explainer. Essentially,end-to-end encryption means that only the sender and the recipient can read the message. The message is encrypted on your phone, send to the recipient, and then decrypted. This prevents prying eyes from the telecom providers, government agencies, and even the company that hosts the service itself from being able to read your messages. This means they wouldn’t have the ability to hand over messages even if they were subpoenaed to by a government agency. And if a hacker broke into the messaging service’s servers, they couldn’t get at your conversations.

The desire for end-to-end (E2E) encryption isn’t just about those who don’t want the NSA to spy on them. In practice, it’s just about a basic sense that messages should be private. With that in mind, you have to be aware that just because something has the word “encrypted” doesn’t mean it is end-to-end encrypted. Some services will encrypt the message between the endpoints of transmission; your conversations are stored encrypted on the messaging service’s servers, but since they encrypted them, they can decrypt them.

The services we’re looking at here all feature end-to-end encryption.

There is a growing consciousness about the desire to keep one’s messages private. Some are concerned about hackers, or worry about the government spying on them, but most people just agree with the general principle that what you say in your chat conversations ought to stay between you and the people you chat with.

It’s not a pleasant idea to think that your messages could be archived for perpetuity on a large company’s server or analyzed by some algorithm. The quest for privacy has birthed a whole generation of apps that promise to give you exactly that. Services like Telegram and Signal have turned the phrase “end-to-end encryption” into a popular discussion. We’re here to help you figure out what this is all about and which apps to try.

A little background on encryption

Before we look at some specific apps, here’s a very brief explainer. Essentially,end-to-end encryption means that only the sender and the recipient can read the message. The message is encrypted on your phone, send to the recipient, and then decrypted. This prevents prying eyes from the telecom providers, government agencies, and even the company that hosts the service itself from being able to read your messages. This means they wouldn’t have the ability to hand over messages even if they were subpoenaed to by a government agency. And if a hacker broke into the messaging service’s servers, they couldn’t get at your conversations.

The desire for end-to-end (E2E) encryption isn’t just about those who don’t want the NSA to spy on them. In practice, it’s just about a basic sense that messages should be private. With that in mind, you have to be aware that just because something has the word “encrypted” doesn’t mean it is end-to-end encrypted. Some services will encrypt the message between the endpoints of transmission; your conversations are stored encrypted on the messaging service’s servers, but since they encrypted them, they can decrypt them.

The services we’re looking at here all feature end-to-end encryption.


Another good option is Wire. It offers some fun messaging tricks, like the ability to doodle, share your location, send images, or record a video. The app also includes a chat bot, Anna, which offers somewhat useful answers to various questions about how to use the app.


Wire offers a chat bot and a number of different ways to get your message across.

Your account is tied to your phone number, which makes setup and account deletion easy. Wire is great for one-on-one chats if you would prefer conversations with someone be off the record. But it doesn’t have the same type of social or group features found with some of the other offerings here.


You also can’t forget about the uber-popular WhatsApp. Like the others on this list, it promises end-to-end encryption so your messages stay private. The biggest advantage is that the service, which is owned by Facebook, has over a billion users. There’s a very good chance you won’t have to convince all your friends and family to download the app.

whatsapp material design

WhatsApp is a popular messaging app throughout the world.

That shouldn’t be discounted, as one of the pains of moving to a messaging service is convincing everybody to jump aboard. However, WhatsApp is now owned by Facebook, a connection that could make some wary, especially since the social network recently announced it’d be using some account information, including phone numbers, from WhatsApp. If your goal is a high threshold of privacy, then it’s worth keeping an eye on.


If you want to see messages disappear before your eyes, then Dust (formerly Cyber Dust) is the way to go. The brainchild of Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban, the messages can disappear in 24 hours or as soon as they’re read, based on your preferences.


Dust (formerly Cyber Dust) makes your messages disappear and offers an interesting social element.

The company spells out its encryption policy, and includes a couple other features to ease your mind like chats that don’t show usernames, so even if someone took a screenshot it couldn’t necessarily be attributed to you.

The best app for you is going to depend upon your needs. Secure messaging is a huge and growing area of consumer interest, but it’s worth the effort if staying secure is what you’re after.


The best second-screen apps for watching the 2016 Olympics

The 2012 Summer Olympics spawned a digital deluge. There were reportedly 15 million downloads of the official London Olympics app, and 60 percent of visits to the  Olympics website came from mobile devices. Social media buzzed with hundreds of millions of tweets and comments.

Thanks to that second-screen surge, Rio 2016 is poised to be the first multi-platform Olympics. To make sure you don’t miss a second of complimentary content, we’ve compiled the most essential free apps to download. Whether you just want to stay on top of stats and scores, get an insider view of events, or follow your favorite athletes, you won’t miss a moment of Olympic action once competition begins on August 5.

NBC Olympics: Rio News & Results

NBC Universal (NBCU) is the exclusive broadcaster of the 2016 games, and its free official app should be the hub of your second-screen experience. It provides coverage of the 2016 U.S. trials, athlete bios and profiles, video features, Olympic Talk reports and analysis, and full Rio Games competition schedules. And that’s all before the Opening Ceremony.

nbc olympics

NBC Olympics: Rio News & Results is your one-stop second screen app.

Once the games begin, you’ll also get real-time results and medal standings with alerts and notifications; TV and live-streaming schedules; and video highlights, news articles, and photo galleries for all 34 Olympic sports.

This year’s app also sees the return of Primetime Companion, a second-screen feature that syncs with the NBC broadcast and lets you immerse yourself through polls, trivia, slideshows, videos and athlete bios. You can also share your Olympic viewing experience with friends through a set of integrated social tools.

(Android, iOS)

The Olympics

Want to relive Mark Spitz’s ’72 seven-gold-medal sweep or the women’s soccer team’s overtime gold win in 2004? You can do it with this app, your own personal Olympic archive.

the olympics

The Olympics is an archive of the modern games’ greatest events and Olympians.

Linking to the official Olympics website, the app gives you fingertip access to Olympics programmes going back to 1896. Relive every triumph, upset, and record-breaking performance through a treasure trove photos, videos, and stats that span the modern games. You can scroll through a curated gallery of the greatest Olympians or search for medalists by games, country, and athlete.

With its emphasis on history along as well as the latest IOC news and results from the Rio games, this app provides enriching context for your Olympics viewing.

(Android, iOS)

NBC Sports

NBCU will air 6755 hours of Olympic programming across its channels and digital platforms. Chances are you won’t be near your TV or computer for all of them. This app is your ticket to Olympic viewing on the go.

nbc sports

NBC Sports will live stream 4,500 hours of coverage of the 2016 Rio Olympics

The NBC Sports app—formerly NBC Sports Live Extra—will live stream 4500 hours of coverage of the 2016 Rio Olympics. You also get video-on-demand previews and highlights, online-coverage schedules, push notification reminders for upcoming events, and full-event replays.

But this is one app you’ll want to keep around once the Olympics conclude, as it provides the same features for other NBC Sports events, including NFL Sunday Night Football and Thursday Night Football, NHL regular season and Stanley Cup Playoff games, the PGA tour, Premier League soccer, and more. It isn’t for cord-cutters though; you’ll need to authenticate your pay-TV subscription to use it.

Rio 2016 Social Hub

Rio 2016 Social Hub puts you as close to your favorite athletes as you can get without setting foot in the Olympic Village. This official Olympic app connects you with the verified accounts of thousands of Olympians across Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, and it aggregates all your favorite profiles in one place. Search by team, athlete, sport, or game, and create your own news feed of favorites to follow in Rio.


rio social hub

Rio 2016 Social Hub

Rio 2016 Social Hub aggregates thousands of Olympians social feeds in one place.

Rio 2016

The ceremonial journey of the Olympic Flame from Olympia Greece to the site of the games is one of the best-loved Olympic traditions. No surprise then that it has its own app.

Rio 2016 allows you to follow the Olympic Torch as it is relayed through Brazil by 12,000 torchbearers, each of whom carries it for roughly 200 meters. The app provides photo-rich day-by-day accounts of the torch’s progress, along with the relay schedule, route maps, and a list of torchbearers. Articles and videos also detail the history and symbolism of this hallowed tradition.

rio 2016

Rio 2016 tracks the Olympic Torch relay through Brazil to the Opening Ceremony.

For those lucky enough to be in Brazil during the relay, the app lists associated street parties and other celebrations, as well as Olympic venue and ticket information.

(Android, iOS)

Team USA

Can the men’s basketball team win a record third straight gold medal? Will Simone Biles win her first to solidify her status as the next great American gymnast? Can Michael Phelps live up to, or even surpass, his past glories in what is likely his Olympic swan song?

team usa

Follow the storylines of all your favorite American Olympians with the Team USA app.

These are just a few of the U.S.-themed storylines that will play out in Rio this August. The official Team USA app will make sure you don’t miss a single development. Chock full of exclusive Team USA content, the app delivers a wealth of news, features, photos, and videos leading up to and during the summer games. You can customize the home screen and push notifications to follow your favorite athletes, teams, or events. The app also includes a video-on-demand library of highlights and behind-the-scenes moments, as well as a real-time Rio results tracker for all Team USA events.

(Android, iOS)

USA Basketball

It’s a big year for U.S. basketball. The men’s national team is going for a gold-medal three-peat, and the women’s team—arguably the best ever assembled—is expected to win its sixth straight gold. The recently relaunched USA basketball app makes it easy to follow both teams’ hardwood heroics.

usa basketball

Follow the hardwood heroics of the national men’s and women’s teams with the USA Basketball app.

The official team app overflows with behind-the-scene news, features, videos, and photos. You’ll go inside training camp with “wired” coaches and players, get in-depth profiles of your favorite athletes, and have access to up-to-date roster and schedule information. The app also integrates the official USA Basketball Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram accounts for even more insider content. It’s the next best thing to being in the locker room.
[“source -pcworld”]