Entertainment

Bird Box, Tidying Up with Marie Kondo: Now Playing

Don’t look unless it sparks joy

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Over the holidays, the GadgetMatch team got some time to rest and relax before CES 2019. Here’s what we enjoyed during our break.

Movies to see

Bird Box
Marvin: If you’ve already watched Bird Box, congrats. If not, you aren’t missing out. Despite the massive hype, this Netflix movie isn’t a must-watch. Honestly, the fan theories and multiple interpretations you’d read online are more fun than the feature itself. Even its legacy, the Bird Box challenge — wherein you have to do mundane tasks blindfolded — may leave a longer-lasting impression.

Taylor Swift reputation Stadium Tour
MJ: There’s something magical about concert films, especially if it involves your favorite pop star. Taylor Swift’s Reputation Stadium Tour celebrates a night of music featuring a visually pleasing stage and fabulous dancing. This happened at the AT&T Stadium in Dallas, the last run of her US leg during her world tour.

Black Mirror: Bandersnatch
Kevin: If you share the same sentiments with Marvin about Bird Box, you’re better off checking out Black Mirror’s Bandersnatch. Being an interactive movie, it’s probably something you haven’t experienced before. The way you select between choices throughout the scenes dictate different results and next thing you know, the fate of a teenager’s video game is in your hands. Oh, and when you’ve seen it, check out our Bandersnatch: A Discussion article and read our take on the entire thing.

TV shows to binge watch

Tidying up with Marie Kondo
Kevin: Since most of us are still struggling to be proper adults, it really helps to be shown once in a while how to do things properly — most importantly, in tidying up our own place. Marie Kondo is an organizing consultant famous for her KonMari method and only keeping things that “spark joy” in you. Beyond the wise decluttering tips, the show also touches on the human side of everyday things that sometimes result in one’s disorganization.

Instant Hotel
Dan: Instant Hotel is one of those shows I never knew would be a good. The premise of the show revolves around the concept of an instant hotel (think Airbnb) wherein owners have to prove that they have the best one. They stay in each property and give it a score based on certain criteria. Instant Hotel is delightful to watch, while at the same time interesting because of the contestants. The show is originally from Australia but it’s available internationally on Netflix.

A Series of Unfortunate Events, Season 3
Dan: The third and last season of the A Series of Unfortunate Events on Netflix wraps up the tale of the Baudelaire children. It’s adapted from the four final books of the novel series. Since this is the final season, it has to be good. Like the first and second season, the third one is well-made and has a unique personality. The overall narrative matches the novel’s tone. It’s wonderfully weird, to be honest. I just wish that the ending was split into two parts to cover more of the final novel.

Titans
Dan: Those who have watched Teen Titans cartoons before should check out DC Comic’s live-action series Titans. If Teen Titans is a fun, quirky superhero show, Titans is dark and mature. Its post-Nolan, post-Dark Knight atmosphere presents itself well, but I do have some minor concerns. Marvel’s Daredevil series is better overall, though Titans has the potential to be great. The first season is now on Netflix.

YOU
MJ: YOU is about Joe Goldberg, a bookstore manager who’s obsessed with an aspiring writer named Guinevere Beck. The show shows how today’s technology makes it easier for stalkers to find their way into our lives. Aside from the creepy and extreme measures the bookstore manager does to insert himself in Beck’s life, YOU gives a lesson on what not to do when dealing with strangers to prevent stalkers.

Patriot Act with Hasan Minhaj
Rodneil: I’m a lowkey fan of political satire and Hasan Minhaj’s delivery, which I can only describe as a PowerPoint presentation on steroids, feels like such a fresh take. The little over 20-minute episodes that range from immigration to social media, and even hypebeasts, are all well-written and thoroughly researched. The show is both informative and undeniably entertaining.

Naruto
Rodneil: Also known to its fans as “Boruto’s Dad,” this is quite literally the origin story of a legend. Naruto was part of the Big Three shonen anime for longer than a decade and its availability on Netflix is great for both the younger generation and everyone feeling nostalgic about the anime. This series also has arguably one of the best fights in anime: Rock Lee vs Gaara. That’s Season 2, episodes 22 to 24. You’re welcome.

Albums/Songs/Podcasts to listen to

Sunrise by GFRIEND
Vincenz: This is different from your typical K-pop girl group songs with catchy and repetitive lyrics. The song portrays a more meaningful and heartfelt message with its lyrics. Combined with the sound of classical instruments and synths, you will also be mesmerized by their powerful yet soothing vocals (two high notes in one song, anyone?), giving you the feeling of a fantasy-like, whimsical love song — not to mention it also sounds like a Korean anime track.

Like Like You by Ace Banzuelo
Vincenz: I was already hooked the first time I listened to this song. Ace’s vocals clearly catch the ears (and even hearts) of its listeners. It gives me the LANY x LAUV vibe because of its mesmerizing synth-pop tune that works together with its catchy yet meaningful lyrics. This is definitely a perfect go-to song for your daily music streaming, casual road trips, and even chill bar sessions with your friends and special someone.

Apps to download

San Bidet
Dan: You might have heard about it already, but apps like this need to be more popular. San Bidet must have a lot of users and supporters for it to serve its purpose. What is this app, you ask? It’s a location-based directory of toilets with a bidet. It can point you to the nearest one with a single tap, because it knows what an emergency is. The app is available for Android and iOS devices.

VLive
Rodneil: The K-pop girl group Twice has been my one source of happiness of late. I needed heavy doses of happiness and that meant downloading the VLive app. It’s a South Korean live streaming service meant for K-celebs to connect with their fans worldwide. The English subtitles are as real-time as they come and you can stream previous broadcasts so you can get deeper into your fandom.


Now Playing is the GadgetMatch team’s favorite games, movies, TV shows, and more each month. If you’re curious to know what we’re into at the moment, this is what you should check out. So grab your popcorn, get some drinks, and enjoy what’s now playing!

Entertainment

Sony WH-XB700 hands-on: Extra bass, extra flex

Great for travels and even OOTDs

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Today’s gadgets are no longer just mere products. A lot have found their way to our daily lifestyle so it’s also important that they look good while we use them. And for others who are more trend-sensitive, these devices should blend well with their outfit and even character — all while doing what it’s supposed to do.

When it comes to headphones, Sony wants to offer something that you can bring anywhere during your travels while looking discreet yet fashionable. This is where the WH-XB700 comes into the picture. On paper, it ticks the boxes of what a casual listener is commonly looking for in headphones plus it’s geared towards those who prefer a bit of extra oomph in their bass.

It has a simple and straightforward design

Eye-catching but not too loud

Available in solid blue or black color options

We dig the blue one better

Soft padding on the earcup makes it comfortable

Has large cups which we like

Body is made of plastic so it’s light on the head

No problem using it for extended periods

Connects wirelessly via Bluetooth or NFC

Although an option to use its 3.5mm jack is available

Built-in microphone for hands-free calls

Can also connect to your phone’s voice assistant

Comes with 360 Reality Audio

Immersing you more in your music

The WH-XB700, among other models in Sony’s audio line, can be paired to your smartphone. And, using the company’s Connect app, you can tweak and customize your sound the way you like it. But as Rodneil mentioned in his WF-1000XM3 review (we know, confusing names), you wouldn’t really end up adjusting your settings that much.

In terms of sound quality, this pair of on-ear headphones deliver clear highs and decent mids. Vocals could be more pronounced but it’s still not bad. The lows, however, are indeed extra punchy. So if you like playing bass-heavy music like house, hip-hop, and the likes, you’d probably enjoy the extra kick in these cans.

Since it’s wireless, it has to connect via Bluetooth which means it has a battery. We’re glad to report that it has a decent battery life that doesn’t require you to keep on looking for sockets just so you could continue to use its wireless capabilities.

I brought it on one of my overseas trips and was able to use it at the airport while waiting to board, during the 4-hour flight, and while walking around for the rest of the entire day with a good amount of juice left when I got back to my hotel.

Charging time is also not bad with up to 90 minutes of music time just from a 10-minute quick charge.

Having the WH-XB700 for a while is basically being able to conveniently listen to your tunes anywhere you go. It doesn’t have the best audio quality in Sony’s lineup but having its flexibility for usage on-the-go sort of outweighs this shortcoming.

They are also light on the head and easy on the ears so fatigue has been kept down to a minimum. You also wouldn’t have to keep on charging it since it could last a few days of moderate usage.

The Sony WH-XB700 currently retails in the Philippines for PhP 7,999 (around US$ 150). It’s not the best wireless headphones we’ve tried on but it’s actually competitively priced for what it offers. Plus, it looks nice and goes well with almost anything you put on.

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Apps

How to find porn on Facebook

We’re letting you in on a secret

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The following is intended for readers 18+

Internet service providers may have blocked porn sites, but social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter haven’t. It’s just a matter of searching the right keywords. Unlike porn sites, they don’t involve the words “sex” and specific genitals. That’s probably why these videos aren’t flagged as porn.

If you’re curious, here’s how to find and report them:

1. Make sure you’re not underage

Since Facebook is not doing its part in censoring such sensitive material, be careful in searching these videos. Wait till you’re in the appropriate age or get parental consent.

2. Log on to Facebook

Whether you’re on the app, on a mobile browser, or when using desktop, just sign in to your Facebook account.

3. Go to Facebook Watch

This is where you can find what we’re talking about. Facebook Watch is the company’s video-on-demand service, tailoring personalized short- and long-form content depending on popularity and engagement. It’s the icon with the play button.

4. Search “Relaxing Music Japan” and “Japan Bus Project”

After searching, you’ll see tons of videos that need to be reported. So far Facebook hasn’t implemented any censorship when it comes to videos like this.

See also

Other ways to access porn that’s blocked in your country 
Japanese porn on billboard stops traffic along major intersection
Google, Facebook could be tracking your porn
Starbucks will start banning porn access on its Wi-Fi
You can now star in your own professional porn video

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Entertainment

Here’s what to expect from Van Gogh Alive in Manila

Experience the Dutch artist’s famous works in this multi-sensory exhibit

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Taken with the OPPO Reno 2

Regarded as one of the most influential artists of all time, Vincent Van Gogh’s works have been on display in different museums and exhibits all over the world. Grande Exhibitions’ Van Gogh Alive offers a unique way of experiencing the Dutch artist’s works.

Using SENSORY4, a system that combines multichannel motion graphics, cinema-quality surround sound, and up high-definition projectors provide one of the most spectacular multiscreen environments in the world. Experience some of Van Gogh’s most popular paintings like Sunflowers, Starry Night, and Cafe Terrace at Night come to life in this 45-minute multi-sensory exhibit.

Van Gogh Alive runs from October 26 to December 8, 2019 at One Bonifacio High Street, 5th Avenue, BGC. Tickets may be purchased at www.themindmuseum.org, for PhP 750 (adults) and PhP 450 (children and students up to college level).

All photos are taken with the OPPO Reno 2.

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