Brian Heater

Brian Heater

Hardware Editor

Brian Heater is the Hardware Editor at TechCrunch. He worked for a number of leading tech publications, including Engadget, PCMag, Laptop, and Tech Times, where he served as the Managing Editor. His writing has appeared in Spin, Wired, Playboy, Entertainment Weekly, The Onion, Boing Boing, Publishers Weekly, The Daily Beast and various other publications. He hosts the weekly Boing Boing interview podcast RiYL, has appeared as a regular NPR contributor and shares his Queens apartment with a rabbit named Lucy.

The Latest from Brian Heater

Enjoy some 4K TV with your nature on Samsung’s new outdoor sets

Like most of us you’ve probably been stuck inside for months now. Sitting around, pacing your home, watching a lot of bad television. Would anything possibly be better that finally getting some time

Spotify will let employees work from home through the end of year

Spotify this week joined a growing number of tech giants expanding their work from home policies as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to drag on. While not as radical as Twitter’s recent decision to l

Personal finance tracker Copilot adds support for Apple Card spreadsheet imports

When Apple added the ability to export transactions via spreadsheet to its credit card, Matthew hit up the folks at Copilot, asking whether they planned to support the feature. The answer was essentia

What airport security looks like if you fly during the pandemic

As segments of the country begin the process of reopening, many antsy Americans are no doubt itching to travel during the Memorial Day weekend. With the holiday fast approaching, the TSA is outlining

How I Podcast: Articles of Interest’s Avery Trufelman

The beauty of podcasting is that anyone can do it. It’s a rare medium that’s nearly as easy to make as it is to consume. And as such, no two people do it exactly the same way. There are a wealth o

Facebook introduces new Messenger safeguard aimed at combating scams and fake friends

Facebook this morning announced a new feature for Messenger designed to cut down on malicious parties looking to scam users. The company scans accounts for suspicious activity, leveraging machine lear

Twitter is testing a feature that limits who can reply to your tweets

Twitter today acknowledged that it has begun testing a new setting that lets users limit who can reply to tweets. The setting was first noted earlier this year. Similar to Facebook’s post view setti

GE’s soft robot bores holes like a giant earthworm

A giant earthworm robot was not on the list of things I expected to see when I logged in this morning. But it’s here, and I’m here for it. Designed by a team at GE Research, the robot in question

Sphero appoints new CEO, spins off robotics startup for first responders

Sphero just announced that it has spun off another company. Once again, the new startup has a decidedly different focus from its parent company’s core of education-focused products. While still a ro

IFixit introduces a free database of medical repair manuals

Best known as leading purveyors of device teardowns, iFixit today announced that it has turned much of its focus to even more pressing matters. For two months, the site had roughly half of its staff t

Spotify signs ‘The Joe Rogan Experience’ to an exclusive multi-year deal

Over the past couple of years, Spotify has demonstrated a long-term commitment to the podcasting format by shelling out money hand over fist. The music streaming service has made a number of high-prof

The mystery of RGV2cw, Microsoft’s extremely nerdy secret message to developers

When he was still running Microsoft, Steve Ballmer caused quite the stir in the tech world by screaming “Developers! Developers! Developers!” Since the executive retired to spend more time with hi

Microsoft’s Build keynote showcases the accessibility and awkwardness of online events

“We’re living through extraordinary times,” Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said as he opened his Build 2020 keynote on a somber note. It was an odd tonal shift following the event introduction by h

Berlin’s IFA tech conference will go ahead in-person this September — with caveats

After months of news about large-scale event cancelations, Berlin-based mega-conference IFA announced today that it will go ahead with a planned in-person event, from September 3 to 5. With the future

36M Americans have filed for unemployment, but (some) tech firms are still hiring

Last week, U.S. unemployment claims hit 36 million over a two-month period. The results of pandemic-led closures have been devastating to innumerable industries, as the timeline to reopen remains unce

Google is piloting a simpler Nest Hub Max interface at retirement homes

Last week, Mount Sinai showcased how it’s started using Nest devices to monitor patients remotely. Today, Google’s showing off how the Nest Hub Max is helping retirement home residents feel a litt

A smart highlighter and artificial window are among Samsung’s latest C-Lab spinoffs

Samsung’s in-house incubator C-Lab has produced some of the more fascinating hardware devices in recent memory. Previous graduates have run the gamut from smart belts to augmented reality. The Samsu

Apple begins reopening some stores with temperature checks and other safeguards in place

In mid-March, Apple closed all of its stores outside of China “until further notice.” It was a sweeping — but necessary — move for a world facing down a growing pandemic. In a statement issued

Where to shop online that isn’t Amazon, Target or Walmart

As shutdown orders extend indefinitely, online shopping has become a lifeline for people forced to avoid the outside world. Often times opting to shop with a mega corporation like Amazon, Walmart or T

Vice lays off 155 as COVID-19 continues to slam media revenue

In a memo titled “The Course Ahead,” Vice Media Group CEO Nancy Dubuc announced a large round of layoffs to staff. The number includes 155 workers — 55 of whom will lose their jobs today. The re
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