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Perhaps you're familiar with the saying, "two is a coincidence, three is a trend?"
Well, considering that last month we discovered British Airways' duty-free magazine selling selfie sticks onboard, we've officially reached the "coincidence" stage this month, after spotting another selfie stick featured in the duty-free magazine of Malaysia Airlines.
Malaysia's choice is a "Lifetrons Switzerland Self-Portrait Advanced BT Handheld Stand with Built-In Bluetooth Remote." In other words, a fancy schmance $50 selfie stick.
Even though music festivals and even some airlines are moving to ban selfie sticks, British Airways is going against the stream to embrace the doohickies, even offering them for sale via their in-flight duty-free catalog.
We spotted this entry, for the “Bitmore Bluetooth Selfie Stick,” just yesterday while flying from Copenhagen to London-Heathrow, but rest assured all you longer-distance BA flyers have a chance at it as well; that same duty-free catalog shows up on flights outside Europe, too.
Travel News / Travel Tech / Crimes / Argentina Travel / EZE / Buenos Aires Travel / AEP / iPhone / Smartphones / → All Tags
Argentina is a beautiful country, but the reception for visitors arriving to Buenos Aires can be confusing thanks to a small section of the customs form. The Declaration of Mobile Phone requires travelers to list the brand, model, series, and any accompanying digital accessories of their personal mobile phone, with no explanation why the customs officers might need this information.
The document comes straight from the AFIP (Administracion Federal de Ingresos), and their website does say, at the very bottom, that this portion of the form needs to be completed, no matter your citizenship status or how you're entering Argentina.
We'd been to Argentina before, but never before by way of Buenos Aires' Ezeiza (EZE) Airport, and a past visit actually saw us robbed of our Nikon DSLR. It was after that unfortunate incident that we heard about and read more on Argentina's strict importation laws and high import taxes, which breeds desire for black market consumer electronics and the petty crime that fuels the trade.
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Sometimes it seems like everyone around you has the newest, best smartphone, and soon that feeling will include all the flight attendants onboard United Airlines. The carrier just announced that they’re ordering a boatload Apple's freshest offering to aid with in-flight service efficiency.
United was sold on the awesomeness of these little—well, big—devices, as the carrier is bringing the iPhone 6 Plus to 23,000 flight attendants. It's not a holiday present, however; the iPhones will be used to record retail transactions and other purchases aboard flights. Access to corporate email, intranet sites, and even policies and manuals will also be accessed through the new phones. United is even ditching the traditional printed safety manuals, as everything will now be right on the screen.
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Apple Pay is the hot topic of conversations this week, as Apple releases their "credit card killer" for easier, and more secure payments. So far it's only available to Americans, for use in the United States, but as this is only the beginning of Apple Pay we can see an expanded future ahead. So, how to get started?
First off, you must be in possession of an iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, iPad Mini 3 or iPad Air 3 running iOS 8.1, and you must enable passcode lock and, for the iPhone, Touch ID (fingerprint recognition). It's extra layers of security.
For help with setting it up, check out AppleInsider, which we did and then immediately headed out to Walgreens to purchase a few mini travel toiletries.
Apple Pay performed beautifully. When the cashier totaled up our purchases, our Passbook Apple Pay screen switched itself to prompt us to place our finger for Touch ID. When our print cleared, the phone vibrated and chimed, and displayed a small record of the transaction including store name and location.
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If you were among the first to download Apple's iOS 8 just as it became available, by now you will have had a good few days to play with the changes and how they relate to your usage of the iPhone. Among the many updates are a few that will prove a marked improvement for travelers who rely on their phones.
Previous updates gave us one place to store our mobile boarding passes (now even easier on the Apple Watch too), the sharing of photos directly from the photo app, and quicker access to frequently used apps, and the iOS 8 only improves upon these. Sure, the recent update has had its rough patches as of late, but these new perks are some of the coolest to date:
Travel Photography / Instagram / Hyperlapse / Videos / Travel Tech / iPhone / → All Tags
Have you posted a Hyperlapse yet?
Hyperlapse from Instagram, a free video app released yesterday to the iTunes app store, is enjoying runaway success, with more than 40,000 Instagrams bearing the #hyperlapse hashtag in just the first 24 hours. The quick uptake isn't surprising; the app is well-designed, easy to use, easy to sync with social media, and inspirational in nature.
It's obvious from the first moment of the first Hyperlapse (Instagram's promo video, above), that this brand new app is
god's Instagram's gift to mobile travel photography. Wired even went so far as to call it a "$15,000 video setup in your hand."
Travel Tech / Japan Travel / HND / NRT / Smartphones / iPhone / Airports / SoftBank / SIM Cards / Travel Tips / Osaka Travel / KIX / Tokyo Travel / Social Media / → All Tags
Confession: we're extremely heavy users of data on our smartphones, since those phones connect us to social media, work, maps, and pretty much everything else while on foreign soil. We're not ones to "power down" on a trip, unless the destination is completely off the grid. Thus, one of our largest concerns is being smacked with a ridiculously large international data roaming bill upon return home.
To prevent against big bills, we search for SIM card packages offering unlimited data usage, and recently had a great experience with one in Japan, a country with such advanced cell phone technology that it can be challenging to use anything but the latest handset. And, unfortunately, Japan doesn't make it easy for foreigners to purchase a SIM card; one must be rented.
Finding reliable WiFi while on the road is finally, hopefully as simple as opening up an app on your smartphone.
A handy new iPhone app helps users sniff out the fastest free wifi and 3G networks on the go. Rotten WiFi isn't just a tool to rate the performance of a signal; it's also a social network to warn potential network users of bad hotspots and redirect them to the best connections.
Whether you're in an airport, hotel, cafe, convention center or government building, you can easily find the fastest available free network and see what other visitors have said about it.
Planning a vacation is hard enough when you think of all the decisions to be made, from picking destinations to choosing airlines and hotels. That's why we're pretty excited to check out this new travel app that marries photo-sharing sites and TripAdvisor. Views On Top lets travelers browse photos from their destination and cherry pick what they'd like to see.
Its target are the time poor travelers, as the app allows users to check out stunning shots of locations shared by either locals or other tourists. It even assists in travel photography; perhaps you want to get your own shot of the Taj Mahal at dawn or the perfect capture of Copacabana Beach from a secret roof deck, well snap-happy visitors can share tips for snapping that perfect shot.
Travel Tech / United / iPhone / iPad / iPhone Travel Apps / Airline News / Apple / Free Stuff / In-Flight Entertainment / → All Tags
Coming this April to United aircraft: live streaming movies and TV shows directly to your Apple device. The scoop comes from Patently Apple. As with any major United announcement lately, however, there is both good and bad news.
The good: the new entertainment system will initially roll out onboard the airline's Airbus A319, Airbus A320, Boeing 747-400 and select 777-200 fleet, to offer passengers 150 movies and 200 TV shows for free.
The bad: It will only be accessible on Apple iPhones and iPads running iOS 7 with the United app, and on MacBooks (without the need to download an app). No word on if Android gadgets will eventually enjoy the same.
London Travel / Museum Travel / iPhone / iPad / Travel Apps / → All Tags
Load up your mobile phone with a nifty new app before your next trip across the pond, as there’s a new way to check out the sites in and around London.
The latest app from the Museum of London allows travelers to match up modern day sights with images from the past. It’s kind of like creating your own augmented reality of what’s going on in the city.