Features

Technology that shaped the decade

For better or worse?

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The last decade went by just like that and we’ve seen evolutions of many kinds. Technology and the internet changed the world for better or for worse.

The way we understand, consume, and own things are now different from how they were just 10 years ago — from politics, health, culture, entertainment, travel; even the career opportunities available to everyone. Here are the technology that shaped the decade:

1. Short form video

Social media has made consuming and distributing information so much different from how it was many years before. One of the things to transform over the last decade is video.

TikTok

We’re starting the list off with the latest platform to take over the internet: TikTok.

Reminiscent of the now-defunct app Vine, on TikTok users record videos of anything under the sun — from skits, to dance challenges, to cute pets.

A lot of these videos go viral not just on TikTok itself, but on other platforms too. The app is slowly becoming the next generation’s go-to app for sharing their activities on the internet and it’s bound to evolve even further from here.

Snapchat

A few years before TikTok got so popular, millennials used Snapchat — and a lot of people still do.

The idea behind the app is simple, yet unheard of at the time of its launch. Everything you post, whether a photo or video, disappears within 24 hours.

Instagram

Not long after, Instagram copied the feature and called it Instagram Stories. Even though Instagram has long been the go-to platform for sharing mundane, everyday photos, it’s also evolved to a host of highly curated photos with themes, and grids.

Most recently, Instagram also launched IGTV, its answer to YouTube’s popularity.

Because of all its features, the app has created an entire industry of creators and influencers.

2. Livestreaming, YouTube, and other video creators

Speaking of industry, content creation and livestreaming on the internet became a thing this decade, too. It’s spurred new jobs and business opportunities that no one before thought was possible…

Twitch

Apps like Twitch has allowed gamers to make a living out of streaming the games that they play including their reactions. Many users, even non-gamers, enjoy watching them.

YouTube

The market for these kinds of videos is so huge that on YouTube, the most popular channel is Swedish gamer PewDiePie. This year he surpassed the 100 million subscriber mark. No other YouTuber is even remotely close to reaching as many subscribers any time soon.

But the platform has become so popular that a lot of other users thrive off of it enough to make a living — from us tech YouTubers, beauty vloggers, to comedians — even kids! So much so that the highest-paid creator for the last two years is 8-year-old Ryan of Ryan’s World.

Facebook Live

It’s worth mentioning that Facebook Live and Instagram Live have also become another go-to platform for a lot of people. Us at GadgetMatch use them to answer questions and share unboxing experiences with you guys in real time.

3. Content streaming

This decade we didn’t just stream user-generated content; the way we consume movies, TV shows, and music also changed. Gone are the days of renting and buying DVDs, iPods, record players. Now we access everything with a few taps on our smartphones…

Spotify

I don’t know about you but all of my music I listen to on apps like Spotify and Apple Music. Instead of buying albums and owning multiple physical records, a subscription on these platforms gives me access to all my favorite artists and songs — on the go!

Netflix

The same goes for movies and TV shows. Everything can be played on demand with apps like Netflix, Hulu, HBO Go, and Amazon Prime Video.

You can watch them anywhere, and on any screen with friends, or family — even alone. Who says you have to go to the movies on your own when you can just do it at the comforts of your own home?

4. Communication and human interactions

Netflix and chill with your significant other especially in winter is fun, too. Asking someone out to the movies is still pretty common, but meeting people and dating have also evolved in the last 10 years.

Tinder

Today, the act of swiping has taken on a whole new meaning — to swipe is to want to meet a stranger.

Dating apps like Tinder and Bumble have made it possible to connect people who are worlds apart, literally and figuratively.

Whatsapp

It’s not just the way we form romantic relationships that changed; messaging apps like Whatsapp, iMessage, Messenger, and LINE have made talking to friends and family easier and a lot faster.

Conversations now unfold on our screens that often times we forget to put our phones down to talk in real life.

Emoji, stickers, and memes

Of course, not everyone is able to convey tone and context with just texting. With the help of emoji, stickers, and memes, communicating with someone miles apart has become more interactive and dynamic like never before.

5. Sharing Economy

Having your own car or office has become optional for a lot of people thanks to the boom of the sharing economy.

Uber

Apps like Uber, Lyft, Grab, and Gojek have not only become an alternative to taxis, they’ve completely changed the face of mobility.

Millennials especially are choosing to use ride-sharing apps to get to their day-to-day — eliminating the need to worry about parking space, maintenance, and other responsibilities that come with driving your own car.

Airbnb

Why book a hotel when you can stay at a house with a kitchen, washer and dryer, and live like a local? That’s the idea behind Airbnb.

I personally love using Airbnb when traveling. Aside from being cheaper, you also get a chance to meet your hosts and make new friends all around the world.

6. Cash alternatives

More and more businesses and cities have been going cashless, but in many places it’s not just about having a credit card.

Mobile payments

In China for example, WeChat Pay or AliPay have become more common than both credit card and cash payments. In the US, there’s Venmo.

Even Facebook has Facebook Pay, LINE has LINE Pay, Samsung has Samsung Pay, Apple has Apple Pay. You get the picture. Maybe one day wallets will become a thing of the past, too.

Block chain

And then there’s block chain. It’s not necessarily become as widespread as we’d hoped but both startups and bigger companies use it as an alternative to wiring money abroad and pay salaries to employees who live in other countries, mainly to avoid losing a lot of money foreign exchange rates.

7. Hashtags

The use of hashtags have also changed over the years. From merely an identifier of tweets and instagram posts, hashtags have been used to spread awareness for illnesses (#icebucketchallenge), spark movements (#metoo) and give voice to the oppressed (#blacklivesmatter), and protest, start revolutions, and even oust governments (#arabspring).

8. Ports

And now, to hardware. While a lot of ports evolved there are those that are also dying.

USB-C

USB-C is slowly replacing other ports for data transfer, charging — even audio listening.

3.5mm audio jack

The headphone jack is starting to become obsolete in a lot of devices as brands seek to make phones and laptops more compact and portable.

The last decade has also seen concept devices without any ports at all… but we probably won’t see those come to fruition until the next few years.

9. Big Display

Probably the most notable change that we’ve seen is that on the tangible thing we interact with the most in our day to day: the smartphone display.

Galaxy Note

Initially mocked by Apple founder Steve Jobs when it launched, the Samsung Galaxy Note was the first to popularize the form factor of phones we’re enjoying today.

Now the big display is common, and small phones the rare Pokemon.

Notch

In more recent years manufacturers have been finding ways to make the big display experience even better. They removed bezels and used the infamous notch instead.

The experience has been a hit or miss; I personally don’t mind it as much.

Pop-up camera

Another solution that brands have come up with is the pop/up camera.

Although really cool at first we know this is pretty temporary until tech like underdisplay cameras become more developed.

Foldable

Last but not the least, while it hasn’t exactly shaped the decade, the foldable display is paving the way for the next one.

Based on what we’ve seen so far, it’s going to be really exciting. We can’t wait for it to develop and reach its peak, and forever change the way we use our devices.

Which tech changed the way you live the most? And which one are you most excited about? Let us know in the comments below!

Apps

Going Cashless: Make payments, transfer funds all on your phone

It’s pretty convenient

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So you’re stuck at home with some extra time on your hands. When you feel like taking a break from all the shows you’ve been watching, perhaps you can make time to figure out how to transition to cashless payments.

We’re dealing with a unique situation right now and cashless transactions is one of the little ways in which we can help with social distancing measures. Not to mention, it’s also pretty convenient.

If you already have a bank account, chances are you’re already using that bank’s mobile app. If not, we encourage you to do so. But we’re not going deep into that. Today, we’re looking at other payment services that will help you go cashless.

GCash

We partnered with GCash a while back for this quick How-To video. But if you don’t feel like watching, the text comes right after.

Before anything else download the app on the App Store, Google Play, or AppGallery.

Step 1. Open the GCash app and enter your mobile number. Tap “Next” to proceed.

Step 2. Fill in the mandatory information. These include your First Name, Last Name, Birthday, Address, Email Address. When you’re done, tap “Next” to proceed

Step 3. Review your information. Gotta make sure everything’s accurate and matches any official ID you have with you. If you have a referral code, input it using the drop down below your information. Afterwards, tap “Next”.

Step 4. Set your Mobile Pin by inputting a 4 digit MPIN. It’s very important that you can easily remember your MPIN. It serves as your password to access your GCash account. You also need it for your future GCash transactions. So yeah, don’t use your birthday or any birthdays of anyone you’re super close with. Protect your MPIN like your life depended on it. Tap “Submit” to move on.

Step 5. You will receive a 6-digit authentication code via SMS in the device authentication page. Enter the code to authenticate your device.

Step 6. Enter your 4-digit GCash MPIN and click ‘Log In’ to enter the app.

Congratulations! You’re now on GCash. There’s a ton that you can do here. This is where I connected my bank account so I’ve been using GCash to move money around my other accounts, transfer money to my family and friends, load up my prepaid sim, and of course the usual in-store transactions. You can also link it to your Lazada account for your online shopping needs.

For more information, visit the GCash Help Center.

PayMaya

PayMaya is very similar to GCash in that they practically let you do the same things. As mentioned earlier, these are making cashless payments, transferring funds, as well as online shopping. Personally, this is the account I used for most of my app subscriptions like Netflix, Spotify, and NBA League Pass.

Again, make sure you have the app. Get it on the App Store, Google Play, or AppGallery.

Step1: Register with your name, email and mobile number​. The mobile number can be with any network you’re currently using.

Step 2: Create a password​. Unlike GCash which uses an MPIN, the PayMaya password is a lot more like the usual passwords you use for your social media accounts. Again, make sure it’s secure and something easy for you to remember.

Step 3: Receive a verification SMS​. Enter this verification number on the app.

Step 4: Click the VIEW CARD button​.

Step 5: Input your address and birthday​.

Step 6: Receive a confirmation that your account has been activated​

PayMaya also has these cashback promos every now and then. That means anything you purchase, a percentage of that goes back to your account. Here’s a quick little video on that.

To find how you can maximize PayMaya just head on over to their Support Page.

GrabPay

Grab has surprisingly expanded its GrabPay services to more than just hailing rides, deliveries, and paying for GrabFood.

You can now also do the following:

  1. Cashless payment for Grab services (GrabCar, GrabFood, GrabExpress, GrabMart)
  2. Buy prepaid load
  3. Pay bills (Cablielink, Cignal TV, Destiny Cable, DFA, Easytrip, Globe, Manila Water, Maynilad, Meralco, Metro Cebu Water, MMDA, NBI, Pag-IBIG Fund, PLDT, Sky Cable, Smart, Smart Bro, SSS, Sun Celular, UNICEF, VECO)
  4. Pay in-store
  5. Pay online
  6. Send money for free (person-to-person and bank transfer)

Registering is pretty straightforward. Download the app on the App Store or Google Play, and then register using your phone number, Facebook account, or Google account.

For more on what else you can do with GrabPay and how they’re expanding, you may visit their Help Page.

You can also use these services to donate towards efforts in fighting COVID-19. For other ways to help check out our Where To Donate article.

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Features

Her story: Shyama Golden

On childhood memories and creating work that make people more involved

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Shyama Golden is a visual artist from Brooklyn, New York. She was born in Texas, but also lived in New Zealand and Sri Lanka, where her family is originally from. These influences didn’t start coming out in her work until she became more distanced from them. “Sometimes you have to be taken out of an environment to realize what was special about it,” she notes.

The huge painting in her living room called Road Trip was inspired by both her Sri Lankan background and growing up in Texas. Central to the painting is a yakka, a demon character in Sri Lankan folklore that performs exorcism rituals to cure people of their ailments. Shyama says the rituals are something that people have been doing for thousands of years, although they are much less common now — almost like a dying art. In a way, she hopes to resurrect that through the piece.

Shyama draws inspiration everywhere — from distant sources, to forgotten artists, to old books, to obscure references — but so much of her work also reflects her own childhood memories.

“Sometimes you have to be taken out of an environment to realize what was special about it.”

Catsquatch is a collaboration between her and her husband. She did a large painting for it, but it’s also a children’s storybook that they wrote together — a story of house cats running away from home, yearning independence.

Her memory of seeing stray cats wandering everywhere while living in Sri Lanka is also evident in a portrait of the younger versions of her mom and her aunt.

The most notable facet of her body of work, however, isn’t their size or the presence of felines, but the number of digital portraits of women of color she’s drawn over the years.

From flat, minimalist digital work as a graphic designer, having the iPad Pro and Apple Pencil has allowed her to create work that still looks like an oil painting but at a much faster pace.

“What the iPad did is allow me to keep my style. It was really helpful to me because over two years I was able to output what used to take me 5-6 years,” says Shyama.

Among the portraits that she’s done, her favorite is the one of Indian author and activist Arundhati Roy for The Atlantic. She says she liked working on it because it tells a story within the portrait, “beyond just the face, it actually has a whole narrative to it.”

She also uses the iPad to do studies and mockups of what she intends to be a physical work. Initially drawn on Procreate using its symmetry feature, The Feminine Mirage uses a custom panel and a mirror to convey myths perpetuated by different social constructs. Although extremely challenging and time-consuming, she enjoys working on pieces that have a presence in the physical world but are still interactive as they make people more involved.

Her story: Shyama Golden

Shyama Golden is a visual artist whose memories of growing up in Texas and Sri Lanka are evident influences in a number of paintings that she's done. Most notable of her body of work, however, are theportraits of women of color she's drawn over the years using the iPad Pro and the Apple Pencil. This is her story.

Posted by Her GadgetMatch on Friday, 27 March 2020


Her story is a series featuring women we admire from a wide array of cultures and industries — women who excel and work hard at honing their craft by using the tools and technology they have at their disposal. They tell stories of their journey through life, their influences and dreams, their unique experiences, and how they navigate the modern world.

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Hands-On

Huawei P40 Pro Unboxing and Complete Hands-On

‘Visionary Photography’

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Everything you need to know about the new Huawei P40 Series. Yep there are 3 phones this year, the P40, P40 Pro and P40 Pro+. Yep a pro plus model!

In this video you get a P40 Pro Unboxing, Hands-On, some photo samples, and a camera comparison vs the P30 Pro.

Of course I’ll also answer you questions: What’s new? How is the P40 Pro’s camera vs the P30 Pro, and what’s it like without Google Play Services? And while you’ll have to wait for my full review for a verdict, I’ll try to answer the question, Is it your GadgetMatch?

Watch our Hands-On video.

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