On this week’s episode of Double Tap Canada, Steven Scott, Tim Schwartz and Shaun Preece discuss a wide range of topics as usual in their own inimitable style.
This week Steven Scott is exhausted as the endless parade of Black Friday offers shows up on his devices, despite Black Friday itself not having even happened yet! The guys discuss their own purchases which seems to be Amazon Echo Dots in the majority. However they also offer some caution to would-be online customers suggesting that we should all take care to prevent fraudulent activity on our cards.
Skype, Alexa and Cortana Are Now Friends
In the news this week Microsoft have announced its official partnership with Amazon with a number of new features coming to the Amazon Echo devices across the world in the next few months.
This has already started with Alexa becoming available on the PC through the Microsoft Store (as we discussed last week) but now also Skype calling is available through Alexa as well now, meaning you can use your Skype account to contact someone with an Alexa account.
In addition, we’ve learnt that the Windows smart assistant Cortana is now available as a skill for Amazon Echo’s as well (US only). This will let you send emails and do Windows-like work through the Echo device making it a productivity device for the workplace as well potentially.
Flicktype Drop Subscription Model
Following a lengthy discussion over a period of weeks on Double Tap Canada about Flicktype and its decision to create a monthly subscription for its popular iOS keyboard, the company has decided to drop the monthly subscription and create a yearly sub instead due to pressure from Apple.
TV in the UK is fairly inaccessible to blind and partially sighted people and the Double Tap Canada team discuss some of the ways that visually impaired people can still enjoy TV, in particular on demand services.
Shaun’s Top 5 Gadgets He Can’t Live Without
It’s time for Shaun to deliver his own Top 5 gadgets he can’t live without, and he didn’t dissappoint.
5. Bluetooth Trackers – tech to help you find your tech! You can attach these little trackers to anything you can think of like keys or our wallet and then use a smartphone app to help you locate the item, usually in an audible way so it’s easy for us!
4. Wired Headphones – Despite Steven’s insistence that wireless headphones and earbuds are great, Shaun thinks you can’t beat a pair of wired headphones. It’s good for when the batteries die!
3. Battery Chargers – Talking of dead batteries, all our gadgets are great until the battery goes. Shaun always carries one around and offers some good advice when it comes to looking out for the best options.
2. Seeing AI – It’s not officially a ‘gadget’, but it is something Shaun uses once a day. It’s an app that can help you read your letters, tell you what currency you are looking for and even detect people’s faces. Get it now!
1. Be My Eyes – Another app! But it’s essential according to Shaun. Available on iOS and Android, it can help you out and about or in the home. If you just need a pair of eyes, volunteers online are waiting to help. Just don’t share your personal bank details or personal correspondence!
Double Tap Canada airs Thursdays at 8 p.m. Eastern on AMI-audio and is available as a podcast.
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I am an absolute geek who loves technology. I also happen to be severely sight impaired and that has meant my journey with new technology has been challenging. What I've learnt is what I want to share with others and I do that on air in the UK on RNIB Connect Radio's weekly Tech Talk radio show and podcast, and on AMI-Audio's Double Tap Canada radio show and podcast. I'm also a very lucky husband and the owner of the world's coolest dog!