My Kids Love Amazon Echo For Kids And Yours Will Too

Amazon echo

I had heard mixed reviews of the Amazon Echo Dot Kids Edition when it came out. So I wasn’t sure how I would like it, or what my kids would think of it. But I want my kids to be comfortable with technology. Technology wasn’t a part of our lives growing up, but it will be part of theirs so we want them to know the right way to use it. With a little hesitation, we bought two of the Echo Dot Kids for my son and my daughter. This way they wouldn’t be fighting over them. They each got to pick out their own color and the devices come in a very nice kid-proof case. To protect them from being dropped and roughly handled by small hands. 

 

Amazon echo
Amazon Echo Devices

What I Thought

I was really pleasantly surprised by the kid’s version of the Amazon Echo Dot. It has great parental controls and it’s not possible for your kids to order items without you knowing. There is a really impressive range of content for kids grouped by age level. My son loves to have Alexa tell him adventure stories and my daughter loves to hear choose your adventure stories. She’s on book three in the Anne of Green Gables series.

I like that I can into our account and delete all their conversations. To make sure that their information isn’t being stored, sold, or used for marketing purposes. So far I haven’t noticed any hard pitches for toys or direct marketing intended for kids. And I like that at night I have the option to read a book with my kids or just sit and cuddle with them while Alexa tells us a story.

Amazon Echo
The Amazon Echo Dot

What My Kids Thought

My kids think Alexa has the coolest voice ever. I can hear them in the morning when they wake up and saying hi to Alexa. Then I  hear them giggling when she talks to them. The conversation is always kid-friendly and appropriate and they love to ask her questions. I like that they feel free to ask a lot of questions about things that they are curious about. Solving puzzles and playing games with Alexa gives them the chance to develop their own critical thinking skills.

I know parents worry about giving their kids too much technology before they are ready. However, I am thrilled with the Amazon Echo Dot Kids edition and my kids are too. Let us know how you feel about the Amazon Echo. Read more articles by coming back to Funky Gandhi

Why Net Neutrality Matters

net neutrality

What Is Net Neutrality? 

Net neutrality has been in the news a lot lately, and for good reason. If you aren’t really sure what net neutrality is or why it’s important pay attention. Net neutrality is the set of regulations that keeps the Internet free and open to everyone. The current rules were put in place in 2015 but they are expiring. Read more about this issue at Digital Addicts Blog.  

net neutrality
Surfing The Internet Will Not Be As Easy

Why Does This Matter?

This matters because those regulations are the only things keeping cable companies and cell phone providers from charging you more money. The days of being able to surf to any website or use any app on your phone for free may be coming to a close. Or even using a cell phone spy app

If you use social media, stream movies, and shop online that could mean that you might have to pay for access. Without regulations in place to make sure that the Internet remains free, providers can could charge customers to access popular sites.

Different Package Deals 

When you sign up for service with a cable provider you choose from several different packages. Each package contains certain channels. If you pay for the most basic package then you only get access to a few channels. And if you want premium channels you have to buy a different package.

Now think about trying to use the Internet like that. So if you wanted a package that included access to Facebook, Twitter and Instagram you would have to pay more for that package. And if you didn’t pay for that package the provider could block you from accessing those sites online.

net neutrality
Cable Wires

Monetizing The Web

Net neutrality keeps cable companies and service providers from being able to monetize certain websites over others. Or charging customers a higher fee to get faster access. So if net neutrality dies on June 11th and there are no regulations, the way you use the Internet could change drastically. If you enjoyed this post, check out my review of the Canon 6D camera

Fun Party Tech For a Galentine’s Day Get Together – And You Won’t Have To Know How To Spy On A Cell Phone!

If you’re spending Valentine’s Day with your best girlfriends this year and planning a “Galentine’s Day” celebration you can make the evening even more fun with some cool party technology. Lucky you, you don’t need to learn how to spy on a cell phone and can just kick back with the girls!

Galentine’s Day celebrations are becoming more and more popular as single women choose to celebrate their friendships on Valentine’s Day instead of chasing the perfect date. So if you’re single this year and planning on throwing a Galentine’s Day bash here are some fun pieces of tech you can use to make the party pop:

Popcorn Machine

If you’re planning on watching movies or binge watching some TV shows as part of the celebration you’ll need snacks. An old fashioned popcorn machine will make sure that you have plenty of popcorn to munch while you drink and watch movies or TV. When you use this machine no one will have to get up and keep running to the microwave to make more popcorn. And think of all the silly popcorn Instagram pics you could take with your favorite camera!

Electric Wine Opener

No Galentine’s Day party is complete without wine. And an electronic wine opener makes it easy to open even the stubbornest bottles of wine. And as a bonus you won’t have risk your life trying to operate a corkscrew when you’ve already had a few glasses or a bottle of wine. Safety first.

electric wine opener

Smart Phone Projector

Turn your living room into a media room with a smart phone projector and watch movies or TV shows with your friends on the wall or on a white sheet hung on the wall. Make sure that your phone is charged or leave it on the charger and plug the projector into it so that you can stream your favorite shows and movies for hours without your battery dying. Then you and your friends can all find a comfortable spot anywhere in the living room and you’ll be able to see the show. If the weather is really nice where you live you can hang a sheet against a wall outdoors and watch movies and TV shows and enjoy your party outside near a fire pit.

Karaoke Machine

You know that your girls are going to want to sing at some point so it’s a fun idea to have a karaoke machine on hand so that everyone will get to take a turn singing their favorite love songs. Everyone loves to sing karaoke at a party and it’s a good way to get the party going early in the evening and get everyone to loosen up a little.

Perfect Drink PRO

If you prefer mixed drinks to wine, or if your guests do, this little machine and the app that goes with it are a fantastic way to make mixed drinks. The Perfect Drink PRO will give you recipes and tell you how to make almost any cocktail. You can even mix your own if you are feeling ambitious. The scale will allow you to make sure that the proportions of the drink are correct so that every cocktail you make will be perfect. And remember to not drink and drive or have a family learn how to spy on a cell phone for your protection so they can see your GPS location.

The Canon 6D Mark II

A new DSLR is a great opportunity for photos, but do a reverse phone number lookup on anyone who's doing a shoot with you.

The Canon 6D Mark II is a professional DSLR camera made by, you guessed it, Canon. It’s one of their newer models, and though it’s not their flagship camera, it’s still one that professionals can use for just about anything. Because I recently purchased this camera, it’s my joy to be able to write a review about it. It’s one of the most helpful tools I use almost every day, aside from a reverse phone number lookup that helps me learn more about scammers who might be calling me. More than just a review, I’m going to cover if the 6D Mark II is right for you, or if there might be another camera out there that’s better for your needs.

The 6D Mark II From Canon

Full-Frame Sensor

Having a full-frame sensor in their camera is a must for photographers who want to get paid for their work. Most entry-level cameras use APS-C sensors, which crop the image to a certain degree. This means that they don’t give the truest image from the lens. The 6D Mark II, like the 6D, is a DSLR that uses a full-frame sensor, which means that it’ll work great for professional photographers.

4K Time Lapse

Do you plan on just taking photos for social media?
You need to think about what kind of photos and videos you’ll take.

One great feature of the 6D Mark II is the ability to do time lapses in 4K. Time lapses are particularly trendy on social media these days. Before agreeing to a shoot with a photographer, though, make sure to run a reverse phone number lookup to make sure they’re legitimate. If you’re passionate about posting on social media or doing videography, then you should really look into shooting time lapses in 4K.

Full HD Video

While this camera can shoot a time lapse in 4K, it cannot shoot regular video in the same resolution. However, it’s capable of 1080p video. While this may not be enough for a professional videographer, it’s enough if you enjoy doing videography on the side. It’s also great for people who want a full-frame sensor, but don’t want to have to pay for a DSLR that can shoot in 4K. Canon has managed to keep these models pretty expensive.

Adjustable Display

One of my favorite features of the 6D Mark II is its adjustable display. Many DSLR models have a fixed display on the back, where you can view your photos after you take them. Having an adjustable display allows the user to hold the camera up and tilt the display down, so they can still see what they are shooting. This comes in handy for shooting over crowds, along with tons of other situations.

An Overall Great Camera

While I’m still breaking in my 6D Mark II, I can already tell that it’s going to be a great device for many years to come. Be sure to invest in a couple different lenses, or maybe even an L series lens from Canon. Having a high quality lens is just as important for a DSLR as having a good body. So go ahead, invest in this model, and pick out some lenses to go along with it! And be sure to run a reverse phone number lookup on anyone you’re looking to take photos with. Your safety is important.

Spotify: Singers and Songwriters for the Autumn and Winter

Get into the spirit of the season with these singer-songwriters.

The end of the year is on our door step. With the holidays right around the corner, I usually switch from upbeat and fun summer tunes to relaxed and chilled out comfort music. Here’s a list of 3 great singer-songwriters to check out on Spotify this fall and winter season. They will be great for keeping you company on your drives to work, family parties, or coffee shop background music.

Noah Gundersen

There’s no one quite like Noah Gundersen. He will draw you in with his lyrics, where you can tell that he means every word he says. Plus, he has a unique talent for creating metaphors in his songs that compare the human experience to everyday items. He has roots of southern gospel and 60’s rock and roll, leading mostly with an acoustic guitar.

For all of your rainy days and cold nights sitting on your porch, I would recommend listening to Gundersen. He’s one of the best Seattle-born singer-songwriters out there. With over 3 full length albums, 5 EPs and two live recordings, there is plenty of material to cycle through. Ledges, his 2nd full length LP, would be a great place to start to get a good feel for his music.

Caroline Spence


Born in Charlottesville, but she now calls Nashville home, Caroline Spence is an up and coming country songwriter that you should follow. She recently put out her 2nd record “Spades and Roses,” and a short B-sides to follow, which are full of simple beauty and lasting impact. Her voice balances between soft and powerful, and her songs are rich and obviously influenced by the golden age of country and folk. She will tell you all about her struggles in believing that anything good lasts, while still feeling hopeful that real love exists.

Caroline Spence is a fighter for good music and holds true to the phrase “simple is better.” She’s one of the best singer-songwriters to listen to on fall days, walking through crunchy leaves and sipping hot tea.

Denison Witmer

Relatively unknown and undiscovered, Denison Witmer is a hidden gem from Lancaster, Pennsylvania. He’s been putting out music for over ten years. In addition, he’s released over 7 albums, lent his talents to big acts like Sufjan Stevens, but will profess that the most important part of his life is being a husband and father to two children. Still, when he finds the time to make and record music, it is well received. Most of his music is led by one acoustic guitar and one vocal. Now while this is a common combination, Denison Witmer consistently brings his own touch of comfort with encouraging lyrics. Check out his 2nd album “Safe Away” and his most recent self titled album.

Plenty of people out there will enjoy listening to these great artists on Spotify this season. So there you have it – 3 amazing artists you need to add to your playlists this season.

Top Smartphones That Still Have Physical Keyboards

Physical keyboards are great for searches, like a telephone directory.

Call me old-fashioned, but I love physical keyboards on smartphones. I was a huge fan of BlackBerry phones back in the day – actually, I still am. Their physical keyboards made them easy to search for anything, from a telephone directory website to a nearby Chinese takeout place. Did you know that there are actually some smartphones out on the market right now that still have a physical QWERTY keyboard? Here are the best ones.

BlackBerry Priv

The Priv is an extraordinary smartphone.
The Priv is probably my favorite smartphone on the market right now.

Remember how I said that I still loved BlackBerry? Their phones may have fallen out of popularity due to the rise of Apple and Samsung, but they’ve still been developing some amazing devices. The BlackBerry Priv offers a large touchscreen, Android Lollipop, and an 18-megapixel camera. However, my favorite feature is its slide-out, physical keyboard. It makes it easy to send emails, find a telephone directory, and write quick texts. And when you’re not typing, you can just slide it back out of view.

LG Xpression 2

What’s great about the LG Xpression 2, besides having a physical keyboard, is how affordable it is. Most retailers offer it for less than $100. If you just need a simple phone with touchscreen capabilities and a physical slide-out keyboard, perhaps solely for texts or work emails, this is the one for you. Its design is also a bit of a throwback to the iconic Sidekick, which definitely brings some nostalgia for me.

BlackBerry KeyONE

Unsurprisingly, BlackBerry is on this list twice. Their KeyONE model combines the productivity of a physical keyboard with Android’s efficiency. Like the Priv, the KeyONE is ideal for people who send a lot of texts and emails with their phones. In addition, it features a 12-megapixel camera and a battery that typically lasts an entire day on a full charge.

Any of these phones would make a great holiday gift for a friend, family member, or even yourself. Don’t be afraid to treat yourself to a phone that combines the best of old and new technology. If you already have a touchscreen smartphone, though, you can look into buying a keyboard cover. Samsung offers several for their flagship Galaxy models.

The Best Electronics for a Country Person

A cell phone spy app can help parents out in the country keep track of their kids.

It goes without saying that city folk and country people have very different lifestyles, but some electronics appeal to both of them. For example, Apple’s smartphones and laptops are popular in both urban and rural areas. Not only are they easy to use, but it only takes a few minutes to install a cell phone spy app on an iPhone. But, if you’re a country person, you probably also appreciate other electronics that city people have no need for. These include satellite phones, fishing radars, and even trail cams that track where deer are feeding on your property.

Top Electronics When You’re From the Country

iPhone

Contrary to popular belief, country people love their smartphones, too. If you need a phone to send texts, make calls, and use the Internet, the iPhone is a fantastic option. Parents can also install a cell phone spy on their child’s phone to supervise them. Many people don’t know what living in the country is actually like; a smartphone with these features can be incredibly handy when you’re surrounded by tons of land. Plus, a cell phone spy program lets you know where your kid is, even if they’re miles away.

Trail Cam

If hunting is your favorite pastime, then a good trail cam is an invaluable device on any ranch or deer lease. It’ll enable you to see what kinds of animals are out there, including that buck you’ve been trying to catch. Trail cams are great because there’s only so much that you can do at night, when there isn’t enough light to see and hunting is illegal for most animals. You’ll still be able to see what animals are around.

 

GoPro

Use a GoPro to record your outdoor activities and pastimes.
A GoPro is the best device for capturing footage while you’re on the move.

A GoPro is an exciting electronic device that’s not only great for hunting and fishing, but much more. You can use it for snowboarding, skiing, riding dirt bikes, and pretty much any other outdoor activity. Plus, these electronics are waterproof, so you can take them underwater to record incredible footage. This makes them perfect for scuba diving and spearfishing, too.

Fishing Sonar

Instead of radar, the more appropriate term for this is “fishing sonar.” Similar to a submarine, sonar installed on a fishing boat will let you know where the fish are down below in the depths. This is one of the best tools (besides the fishing pole itself) for fishing down by the lake. If you have a boat without fishing sonar, you’ve been missing out.

 

In short, country and city life are very different from each other. Some popular hobbies and pastimes in the country just can’t be done in the city. If you live in the country, these helpful electronic devices will help you make the most of your outdoor activities. They’re also convenient gadgets to use while you’re on the go.

Authentic Content and Other Social Media Trends in 2017

Connecting with others on social media can lead to how to spy on text messages without installing software.

Social media is a medium that is constantly changing. It also goes hand-in-hand with technology. As new technology develops and people change how they use social media, new trends emerge. This year, the hottest trends in social media are the ones that give people more insight into each other’s lives. Many people want to learn more about their significant others as well. They may wonder what their spouse is up to and might want to discover how to spy on text messages without installing software. Here are some of the defining trends on social media for 2017:

Video Content and Live Streaming

Several crimes have been committed over Facebook Live.
Facebook Live creates a lot of potential for crime.

Authentic content, such as videos and live streaming, is the hottest trend in social media this year. Twitter has had streaming available through Periscope for a while. But in 2016, Facebook launched Facebook Live, which allows people to stream video content in real time. Twitter is updating its platform to allow a similar feature. Plus, other social media platforms are following suit. There are both positives and negatives to live streaming video. It can be a great way for you to connect with loved ones, without knowing how to spy on text messages without installing software. Businesses can also use it to engage potential customers and clients.

The downside of streaming video is that it’s difficult to track. In several news-worthy cases, there have been crimes committed on Facebook Live that could not easily be traced. The ability to essentially launch your own reality TV show is tempting for people who want to be notorious. So, use caution when creating authentic content or allowing your kids to live stream videos.

Chatbots

Chatbots are solving the customer service crisis for businesses. These days, people expect customer service representatives to be available 24/7. They also want one-on-one customer service through social media, phone, email, and live chat. It’s expensive for companies to train and pay enough customer service workers to cover all of these outlets. Chatbots fill in the gaps. They’re automated customer service messaging bots that are available on social media. They can answer limited customer questions and refer customers to live help during normal customer service hours.

Augmented Experiences

Have you seen social media photos of your friends with animal ears and noses? What people about whose features are morphed or covered in stickers? Those are considered augmented social media posts. Augmented social media is the ability to add stickers, emojis, and other decorations to photos and videos. It’s one of the most popular social media trends in 2017 and social media platforms are jumping all over it. Right now, people are using apps on smartphones to augment their photos and videos before posting them on social media. They may also be interested in how to spy on text messages without installing software. In addition, they can use their smartphones to track their friends’ locations with Snapchat’s new feature. However, social media platforms are rolling out changes that will allow users to create augmented photos and videos directly from their desktop computers.

Augmented photos and videos are extremely popular right now and are likely to stay that way at least into 2018. While this is a trend that probably won’t last long, authentic streaming content is likely going to stay for a long time. If you’re an avid social media user, you might want to start getting your camera ready now. To read about some gadgets that can help you take photos while you’re on the go, click here.

Essential Gadgets For People Who Are Always On The Go

Portable devices can help you enjoy your commute.

Modern technology is fascinating, but it’s not always easy to find portable devices. I’ve made a previous post about some of the best gadgets to bring on vacation, but what about ones you can use everyday? Whether you’re traveling for work or you just have a long commute by bus or train, these are some of the gadgets you should pick up. Some of them are great for entertainment, while others are just plain handy. Once you try them, you’ll wonder how you were able to live without them.

Tablet

Get some work done while you're out with a tablet.
A tablet can let you easily access the Internet when you’re out and about.

Nowadays, it seems as if there are very few things that tablets can’t accomplish. In fact, they’ve begun to rival laptop computers in efficiency. While iPads continue to reign supreme, there are plenty of options and brands to choose from for these portable devices. Tablets let you explore the Internet, take notes, read ebooks, stay in touch with loved ones, and much more. They’re also generally small, slim, and lightweight, so you can take them anywhere.

Portable GPS

A portable GPS is a good investment if you always find yourself in your car. You can easily mount it to your windshield, save addresses, and look up local points of interest. A few GPS models even allow you to customize what your car looks like on the screen’s map. Others can alert you if there’s traffic, a red light camera, or an important landmark ahead. Best of all, a portable GPS system is a safe way to get from one place to another.

Nintendo Switch

If video games are more your thing, you should think about getting a Nintendo Switch. It combines the best characteristics of home and portable consoles, resulting in a system you can play wherever you want. Although its main purpose is to function as a home console, a removable component, around the size of a tablet, allows you to easily take it with you. You can play your favorite games while you’re waiting in line, at the doctor’s office, or on a long flight.

Cell Phone Charger Case

There are few things that are more stressful than having your phone die when you won’t be near an outlet anytime soon. Attaching a charger case to your cell phone will eliminate that from happening in the first place. All you have to do is charge it, along with your phone, beforehand. Then, once your cell phone’s battery is low, just turn the case on. You’ll see your phone immediately start charging. It’s that easy.