Post image for Less “Stranger Danger” – Kik Messenger Updates App Over Privacy Concerns

Back in mid-2012, I wrote an article about the “dangerous” combination of Kik Messenger and Instagram. The article turned out to be quite popular (and controversial) in a few ways. Parents didn’t know about Kik nor how the “Kik me at” functionality was working with Instagram. Over 2 years later, Kik Messenger has taken a new approach to privacy and how strangers can or cannot interact with users.

Kik Messenger logo

I received an early briefing on the new version of Kik Messenger and while I haven’t actually had hands-on experience with the app, what has been outlined seems to be potentially a positive step forward to giving privacy control back to the user.

The issue that I reported 2 years ago focused on the fact that strangers, people who are not necessarily friends, contacts or acquaintances of a Kik user could send messages openly. For children, that meant an increased possibility of “stranger danger” happening digitally. Messages on Kik are private and there was (and still is) an attraction by kids to put their Kik user name on other social profiles (the same holds true for kids putting their Ask.fm user names on other social profiles as well). While many of the popular social image and video sharing services have a way to chat or post messages publicly, kids, teens and adults also seem to want to have other means of chatting, many of them private. (Note: Instagram and Vine recently added private messaging as well but in those cases, the users knows or is connected to the person private messaging them.)

With Kik messaging, all that you needed to know was the Kik user name and then anyone could contact them privately via the Kik applications.

[click to continue…]


Post image for Which Apple ID to use for iTunes App Store, iMessage, iCloud and Find My iPhone

Apple’s iOS 7 introduced some confusion when it comes to Apple IDs. But the change was intentional because Apple’s desire was to make iOS much more secure. As part of the upgrade process, iPhone and iPad users are required to set up an iCloud account and associate it with Find my iPhone. This process will (hopefully) cause the number of thefts of iOS devices to decline because people will be required to enter their iCloud password in order to restore their device to factory settings. But this new requirement is causing issues and confusion for many iOS users, new and existing. So which Apple ID do you use for the iTunes App Store, iMessage, FaceTime, iCloud and Find My iPhone?


I was one of the confused actually. And it “broke” my previous configurations that I had set up as the IT administrator at home for all Apple devices. Within iOS 6, I was able to set up an account on each iOS device for Find My iPhone, all using a single Apple ID account. When you have kids (or absent-minded adults), devices are frequently misplaced. It was very nice to be able to log into Find My iPhone using a single Apple ID and see all of the devices under one account. With iOS 7, you simply can’t do that. You have to have individual Apple IDs for each person who controls a device.

For iTunes App Store, you can share this login across multiple devices so that you only have to buy an app or song once and share with your family. For iMessage, FaceTime, iCloud and Find My iPhone, you need to have unique Apple IDs – one for each person.


[click to continue…]

{ 1 comment }

Post image for Direct Download iOS 7 Final IPSW Links for Latest iPhone, iPad & iPod Touch

The day has finally arrived! Apple’s latest mobile operating system, iOS 7, is now available. Most people can simply connect their iOS device to the latest version of iTunes (be sure to download version 11.1 which is now available as well), update your apps, do a sync, make a backup and THEN install iOS 7. For those people who were on the iOS 7 beta (developer) track, you might need to download the final IPSW. This short article provides you with direct download iOS 7 Final IPSW links for the latest iPhone, iPad & iPod Touch devices (remember, older devices might not be supported).


If you have an iPhone 4, 4S, or 5, an iPad 2, 3 or 4, an iPod Touch 5th generation or an iPad mini, you can either connect to iTunes to install iOS 7 (which will download it automatically) or you can use one of the direct download iOS 7 Final IPSW links that I have listed below. If you choose the direct download path, you can do a Restore within iTunes and select the IPSW that you downloaded. You can do that by clicking either Shift (on Windows) or Option (on Mac) and click the Restore button within iTunes at the same time.

Direct Download iOS 7 IPSW Links

Here are the direct download links. Be sure to select the proper one for your particular device
[click to continue…]


Post image for 12 Useful iOS 7 Tricks To Know

With Apple’s new iOS 7 for iPhone and iPad GM (Golden Master) now available to developers and the release to the general public just around the corner, I wanted to share 12 useful iOS 7 tricks that you probably want to know. I have been reading public information about iOS 7 as well as using the developer beta for a month or so and have learned quite a few things about the dramatically new design. So, while you will still need to become accustomed to the new interface, you might want to also know some other helpful things.


#1 – Turn On/Off Emergency Service Notifications

Only good for iPhone 4S and higher, there is a toggle within Settings > Notification Center that shows “AMBER Alerts” and “Emergency Alerts”. When these are enabled, you will receive localized alerts to your phone for child abduction and/or other local or national emergencies. You need to scroll all of the way to the bottom of the toggles to use them.


[click to continue…]


The Remote to Rule All Remotes – Logitech Harmony Ultimate

June 15, 2013

I’m not sure how much further Logitech can go with their Harmony universal remote line. With the new Logitech Harmony Ultimate out (which is a great Father’s Day gift, by the way), I’m really curious what the next generation Harmony remote would bring. I’m thinking that it will have some sort of mind reading integration […]

Read the full article →

Instagram Users – How to Clear the Instagram Cache & Save Space on your Smartphone

June 14, 2013
Thumbnail image for Instagram Users – How to Clear the Instagram Cache & Save Space on your Smartphone

If you are a heavy Instagram user, you might not know this but the more you use Instagram, the photo-sharing service and mobile application, the more space the app will consume on your iOS or Android device over time. Originally, when you install Instagram, it only uses about 24 MB (on iOS), but it can […]

Read the full article →

Apple WWDC 2013 – HighTechDad’s LiveStream

June 10, 2013

In anticipation of the Apple WWDC 2013 event, I thought that I would test out something new by trying to cover some of the event via a live stream. Note, this is completely an experiment. You probably can get faster live stream feeds from some of the other major sites or directly on the WWDC […]

Read the full article →

How To Fix a Broken iPhone Home Button – A Free & Easy Software Fix

March 13, 2013
Thumbnail image for How To Fix a Broken iPhone Home Button – A Free & Easy Software Fix

Yesterday I received a panicked call from one of my daughters – “Daddy, my iPhone’s home button is broken!” Tears and wailing ensued. But, as with any broken gadget, I was up for the challenge, knowing that I could either replace the iPhone home button myself or figure out some other way to breath a […]

Read the full article →