Lifestyle

Petcube: The best Christmas gift you can give to Paw-rents

Featuring Juancho!

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Does it break your heart every time you leave your fur-baby at home? Ever wonder what they do when you’re not there to watch? Paw-renting guilt is real and Petcube Bites is the perfect way to deal with it on days when you just can’t bring your pet with you.

I was someone who didn’t want to be one of those pet owners who have a camera to stalk their pet. After my Pembroke Welsh Corgi Juancho came into my life, however, it all changed. A highly sociable dog, he loves the company of humans and hates being alone. On days when I had to leave him for a couple of hours to do the groceries or attend a formal event, he would howl in sadness. We proceeded to train him to be okay with being alone, giving treats before we leave and gradually increasing the time of separation.

However, it made me wonder how he was doing when he’s actually alone. Is he still howling? We needed a pet camera to check on him!

Enter Petcube’s latest version of their camera — Petcube Bites. Not only can you stalk and talk to your pet, you can even reward him for good behavior even when you’re not physically present by throwing treats at him.

Sleek and stylish

One thing I was worried about was how a pet camera would fit into our home. Most of the ones available in the market tend to look too cute-sy or even cheap because of the plastic elements used. The Petcube Bites, although quite big, can blend well with almost any type of room decor. It comes in four colors: Matte Silver, Rose Gold, Carbon Black, and Snow White. You can also put it on a flat surface or mount it on the wall.

Easy setup

Getting the camera up and running is a breeze. Download the app and sign up, plug your unit in, and follow the instructions on your screen. In a few minutes, our Petcube was up and running perfectly and I could see Juancho on the screen.

Security with notifications

You can’t spend all your time away from your pet with your eyes stuck on your mobile’s screen, watching him to make sure he’s okay. You can go about your business with ease as Petcube can detect movement and sound. It will also alert you through a push notification, prompting you to check on your pet.

Missed the moment? Don’t worry. The app saves videos of up to ten seconds from the past four hours into the cloud. You can check it later, download the video, and easily share it on social media. If you want longer videos and storage periods, you can always sign up for a membership to Petcube Care which starts at US$ 4.99.

It doubles as a great security camera for your home too. You’ll know if your pet had a busy day fighting off burglars. Your good boy definitely deserves a giant treat for driving them away!

Getting social

The Petcube app allows you to share photos and videos of your pet on an Instagram-like feed. You also have the choice to set your camera in public mode. This allows other app users to access your camera and interact with your pet. If you own the Play model, viewers can utilize the laser pointer and keep your pet busy. With Bites, you have the option to allow viewers to give treats to your pet, as well.

This is not for everybody, that’s for sure. Our Petcube is a locked camera but I must admit that I do enjoy playing with other people’s cats when Juancho’s asleep.

Capturing special moments with your fur-baby

The Petcube Bites streams 1080p HD video through a 138-degree wide-angle view. You can also zoom in the video up to three times. Night mode allows me to check on Juancho even when we’re already in bed and all the lights are off.

My favorite thing about it, though, is how it is able to record special moments between Juancho and I. Like the time I had to travel for work and he was left alone with his fur-daddy. I was gone for a couple of days and our Petcube Bites was able to capture our sweet reunion.

Acclimatise your pet

The only con I can say about the Petcube Bites is the sound it makes when you press for a treat to be thrown. This has startled Juancho one too many times and has given him some trust issues with it. This doesn’t come as a surprise since he’s still a puppy and is quite jumpy to begin with. He wouldn’t even go near the treats that came out of the device.

Another thing your pet should get used to is hearing your voice when you’re not around. Juancho freaked out the first time he heard my voice via the Petcube, telling him to get off the couch when I wasn’t even there. He jumped right off and it made me feel like God for a little bit but that added to the trust issues.

We’re currently in the process of reintroducing our unit to him. We’ve made some progress but we’re hoping he gets fully used to the sounds. He’s getting a lot bigger now and having more exposure to technology, anyways.

Verdict

So, is Petcube Bites the perfect gift for the paw-rent in your life? It makes sense to give someone the security of knowing their pet (and home) is safe while they’re away for a couple of hours. You can also prevent boredom which leads to destructive behavior. This, by either talking to them or distracting them with treats.

Peace of mind is always a good investment, as well as seeing your pet do something funny and having it on video to share with your friends and family.

What do you mean they’re fed up with my pet posts? Us paw-rents don’t really care.

Dating

Dating apps will stop letting you search by race

In response to Black Lives Matter protests

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Since its inception, online dating has always presented an interesting conundrum. To access the services, users are shrinking themselves down to individual nuggets of data focused entirely on who they are. In doing so, they enter a vast lottery of people, searching for people according to their preferences. However, one of these nuggets is unarguably the most controversial topic today: ethnicity.

Though Tinder does not allow searching by ethnicity, other dating apps — Grindr, OkCupid, and Hinge — do, allowing users to search potential matches based on their race. However, Grindr is taking an all-new stand, in response to the ongoing protests happening across America.

Announced on Twitter, the popular dating app for gay, bisexual, and transsexual men supported the Black Lives Matter movement. However, rather than just making its stand known, Grindr has announced the end of its ethnicity search function. In the next update, the app will take the feature out completely.

However, in a statement to Forbes, other similar dating apps will keep the ethnicity search. According to these companies, minority groups still want the search function to find other people like them.

Regardless, it’s an interesting time for dating apps in general. For one, social distancing has put physical dating to a complete halt, necessitating new socially distant matching tools. Secondly, with race turning into a touchy topic for everyone all over the world, how will dating apps respond?

SEE ALSO: Tinder will soon allow you to match with anyone around the world

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Lifestyle

UNIQLO will let you shop from home through its upcoming online store

Shop your favorite LifeWear pieces!

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Photo by MJ Jucutan | GadgetMatch

UNIQLO lovers, rejoice!

Our favorite and well-loved Japanese clothing brand is launching its e-commerce platform in the Philippines.

The online store will be available on UNIQLO’s website and mobile application, bringing the brand closer to its loyal customers. People will find a convenient way of purchasing their favorite LifeWear apparel at the comforts of their home.

Additionally, the new initiative will extend the brand’s reach to new customers around the country.

UNIQLO‘s apparel highlights Japanese values of simplicity, quality, and longevity. It’s also crafted with the best fit, best fabrics, and innovations to improve your life.

The e-commerce platform is expected to launch in the second half of 2020. For more updates, download UNIQLO’s mobile app, visit UNIQLO Philippines’ website or stay updated through their social media accounts.

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Entertainment

3 comedies you need to watch for good laughs

Keeping it inclusive and culturally diverse!

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We can all use a good laugh every now and then. But now that our society and culture has become more progressive, popular comedies that people used to love — mostly from the 90s — aren’t really that funny anymore.

As the world gets more connected, our awareness of  global, socio-political issues increases. Nowadays, the comedies worth watching are the shows with subtle messages that raise issues reflecting our reality.

Here, we listed down three comedies that are worth checking out, especially if you want a good laugh while staying woke.

Community

I was late to Community party but was very glad I made it. When Netflix dropped its six seasons last April 2020, I found myself sneaking in an episode or two in my daily quarantine life. Having spent three months on lockdown, we can all use a comedy to lift our spirits (other than a psychological evaluation right after the crisis).

Community is a popular sitcom that’s (forgive me for saying this) streets ahead. First aired in 2009, it had a pretty diverse cast. There’s a classic white alpha guy and two white women; one atheist who’s also an activist and a Jewish obsessed with competing.

There are African-Americans, too! One of them is a highly-religious Christian mom, the other is played by Donald Glover aka Childish Gambino. There’s also a half-Arab, half-Polish Muslim, a senior citizen who practices a Buddhist-like cult, and a Chinese-American teacher turned student.

Together, they formed a storyline of misfits turned friends, turned families.

Britta Perry (Gillian Jacobs) performing her awkward song on a Christmas episode

Watching Community heightened my awareness of issues regarding race, gender, nationalities, ages, and cultures. While most of these issues are brought out for comic relief, the characters worked together to find a solution and come into realizations.

Personally, I found it interesting how I can learn life lessons after watching a show that’s supposed to just make me laugh. It’s like hitting two birds with one stone: getting entertained and educated!

The Good Place

I first heard about The Good Place through my best friend who loved watching tellies and was instantly hooked. I honestly believe when pilot episodes make you laugh so hard, the series is going to be extremely good. And that’s what happened when I watched The Good Place.

It’s a story about four deceased individuals who end up in a heavenly utopia called The Good Place. The cast comprise of a white, selfish saleswoman from Arizona, an indecisive black Ethics professor, a hot rich fraud British philanthropist with legs for days, and a Filipino DJ and drug dealer from Florida.

Jason Mendoza (Manny Jacinto) acting as the Taiwanese monk Jianyu to prevent his cover from being blown

What I love about The Good Place is how it tackled ethics and philosophy creatively, bringing up morals through the concept of heaven and hell. Moreover, diversity and representation are on point in this show, with ethnically appropriate actors and actresses. (And they don’t even make a big deal out of it!)

Brooklyn Nine-Nine

Last but not the least, Brooklyn Nine-Nine is a must-watch comedy for everyone. As usual, I was late to the party but I’ve fallen in love with it.

The show didn’t tackle pressing topics such as racism, sexism, and homophobia through specific episodes. Rather, it’s intertwined in the storyline along with a racially mixed group of cops.

The precinct’s captain is a happily married, openly gay cop. Being in the police force since the 80s, he shared his many disadvantages and struggles due to his sexuality.

Gina Linetti (Chelsea Peretti) being sarcastically frustrated during her mother’s wedding

There are topics mirroring our reality in each and every episode: a bisexual cop’s coming out and her parent’s refusal to accept it, the horrors and fear that black people endure in their daily lives (even if they’re in a position of power), struggles of motherhood, pursuing your passion, and a lot more.

Brooklyn Nine-Nine is the most inclusive, diverse, and progressive comedy we all need to watch. It’s open-minded, lighthearted, and ridiculously funny. I still re-watch it to this day when I need a good laugh. It’s guaranteed to have me in tears while laughing out loud.

March on, progressive and inclusive comedies!

I still find myself at odds with my friends, especially with the types of comedies they enjoy. However, I believe that we just need to help our friends explore comedies that don’t use transphobia, homophobia, sexism, fat-shaming, white supremacy, and plain racism as a way to deliver ‘funny’ lines.

How about you? Do you have a go-to comedy you enjoy? Share it with us!

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