First Apple Music Festival to Include Pharrell Williams, One Direction, and More

apple music

With Apple Music everybody’s favorite fruit-named company is poised to revolutionize the Apple Music Festivalmusic industry. Now they plan on bringing it back old-school with a classic music festival featuring Pharrell Williams, One Direction, Florence + the Machine and the Disclosure.

Planned for September in London, the Apple Music Festival has technically been held every year since 2007 but as the iTunes Festival. This year it’s been rebranded the Apple Music Festival making this technically the “First Annual.”

While those are the only announced headliners so far for this year there are going to be a boatload more as the festival lasts a week and a half and Pharrell can only sing “Happy” so many times.

Unique to this year’s concert is that the whole week and half of live music will be live streamed on Apple Music for any subscribers to view for free. Additional coverage will be provided by Beats 1, Apple Music’s very own radio station.

If it’s anything like past years this festival is going to be a lot of fun. We’ve seen Paul McCartney, Elton John, Maroon 5, Lady Gaga, Foo Fighters, Beck and Adele each tear up the stage and I’m sure this year won’t be an exception.

As expected each of the announced artists released statements shortly after their presence at the festival was confirmed. Pharrell Williams stated, “Wow, I’m so grateful to be performing at the Apple Music Festival. The Roundhouse is such a historic venue…there’s always a special energy in the crowd. Thank you for having me!”

While Florence + The Machine went for the simpler, “We’re super excited to be playing at this year’s Apple Music Festival at the wonderful Roundhouse.”

The festival will go from September 19 to September 28 at the historic Roundhouse in London. The Roundhouse was built all the way back in 1847 and stands as the location of the only Doors’ UK performance in 1968. Tickets are free but have to be won. UK residents apply to win tickets directly on Apple Music as well as through specific media partners like the London Evening Standard.

The venue can only hold about 5,000 so there will be plenty who will have to settle for watching it live on Apple Music.

Watch out for further announcements on who will be performing. With several days to fill, my guess is we’ll have a couple more big names to add to the list to the newly christened Apple Music Festival.

Big Sound, Little Speaker

Listening to music has become easier and more wireless as time goes by. Out with the CD player and in with the bluetooth compatibility. Heres a cool product from Cambridge Soundworks that stays up to speed with modern needs, and is great for college students. The OontZ Angle 3 is a wireless Bluetooth speaker that pretty much smokes its closest competitors when it comes to quality of sound.Oontz Angle 3

Weighing a little over half a pound and being only 5 inches long, this guy is a beast. Its got strong bass that doesnt drown out the highs while also pumping out sound thats much louder than youd expect. Weve tried it out and youd be amazed how big a room this little guy can fill with sound. But going a step further, the OontZ Angle 3 is also super robust. Its perfect for a visit to the pool or the beach given it is water-resistant, splash proof and even sand proof. If you want to throw a beach themed party in your dorm youre good to go. As a rechargeable devcie it has up to 7 hours of battery life, which is another big plus. The party doesn’t need to get held up from bad batteries.

On top of all these features, Cambridge Soundworks worked to keep the price down for college and high school students to be able to afford it. The OontZ Angle 3 is one of the best portable Bluetooth speakers youll find thats under $50. You can head to to learn more.

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Innovative Hearing Aids

Here at NewsWatch, stories about the fusion of health and technology are a favorite topic. In the United Sates, hearing loss is the third most common health problem. That means it affects more than 48 million Americans. Untreated hearing loss has been linked to a multitude of issues like social isolation, cognitive decline, and even dementia. To learn more about hearing loss and ways to overcome it, we sat down with Dr. Eric Branda from Sivantos.

Siemens website v2

We enjoy communicating with friends and family, and hearing loss directly affects communication. We recently did a survey, it was 2015 “A Life At Fifty Plus” survey, and some of the key findings that get really interesting is we talk about the amount of hearing loss that’s out there. Yet for people with mild to moderate hearing loss, only about 16% are wearing hearing technology and doing something about it. Then, if we look at the more severe to profound group, because it’s more noticeable for the hearing loss they have more challenges…we do see that number increase, but only to 53%…”

I mean we’re actually working with smart hearing aids. The hearing aids are very automatic. They look at the environment. They decide what needs to happen to make the best listening situation for the wearer. Then we open up things like connectivity, using things like apps, using their phone to be a driver for it, while the hearing aid can still do everything and interact with it. So we really open up the world for them and bring that smart wearable technology to the hearing aid wearer.”

-Dr. Eric Branda, Sivantos To learn more about the Sivantos study on hearing loss or their latest hearing aid devices, head on over to

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Art Appreciation for the Masses

Here is an app for all the refined art students heading back to school.  Art is an extremely vital part of the fabric of society. It keeps the world interesting, and can serve as a mirror for society to see itself. Without art, civilization would lack the foundation of culture and a critically important asset to both science and technology. Unfortunately, to the common individual the art world is very small and overly exclusive. The Artlery app aims to solve this problem. Their goal is to help anyone appreciate art.


Here is the basic rundown on Artlery’s approach. First off, there is an art gallery that works with artists to get their art listed within the app. They then setup something called an Initial Public Offering. This public offering is actually a gift from the artist to the community. This means that anyone with the app that is appreciating the piece, or anyone that is at least visiting the gallery, gets a percentage of the sale profit. This means you are not just a patron of the gallery, but also a stakeholder in the piece that is being sold. If it is re-sold later you can continue to make money off of it along with the artist.

The purpose of this app is not limited to profit though. Once youve appreciated that art piece, you can share it on Facebook and gain more appreciation points. This benefits the artist by allowing their work to be seen by people around the world on social media. Artlery has a number of early trials under way including a popup gallery at the Payne Mansion Hotel in downtown San Francisco. Artlery is available for free on iOS and Android devices. Head to their website for more information.

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3D Home Buying and Design

Hunting for a new home is never easy, not to mention renovating one. Luckily there is an app worth checking out that helps with this process.


RoOomy is an app that with a search function meant for finding new homes through real estate sites. What separates it from the pack though, is the ability to rearrange and design the rooms to create an ideal future home. The 3D designs of the furniture and objects are extremely realistic. The high resolution textures and proportional modeling make it seem like it’s a photo of the real thing.

Once you find the room you want to redesign, roOomy will convert it into a 3D image. From then you can move things around, or remove and add furniture. There are currently six hundred furnishing products in their database but they plan to have as many as five thousand in the coming months. Each of these isconnected to a product page so you can check out the details and even buy the item. Beyond looking at just real estate pages you even have the option to upload and convert your own photos to a 3D rendering and begin designing your existing space. This is also perfect for real estate agents who want to upload images of what the space could look like to help spark peoples imagination. roOomy is a free app on the iPad. So search “roOomy” to download it today, or head to their website for more information.

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Instagrammers and Brands Connecting

As far as social media goes, Instagram is obviously huge these days. Not just a place to build a personal gallery, Instagram is a key place for organizations to increase brand awareness. Be that as it may, until now there hasnt been an easy way to make that happen outside of creating Instagram account for the specific brand. Starting from zero followers can be a long and arduous process to get any recognition. If you were hoping for another way, then we’ve got you covered. Check out Brandsnob.

The idea is to connect brands with elite Instagram users. This means that people who drawn in an audience, sometimes as large as millions of people, will connect with brands to spread the word. By interacting with said followers, this is one clever way for a brand to get eyes on their service or product.

Brandsnob is a direct messaging app thats invite-only. This ensure they are connecting qualified brands with qualified and influential instagram users. It also provides a platform for agents to link up their clients with brands. Just launched in June, they already have 1000 registered influencers and 500 brands with many more on their waiting list. When considering who to invite, they look at several criteria, including how many followers they have, how much they engage with them, and how suitable their image or activities are for the industry brands Brandsnob focuses on.

Subjects range from interests like fashion, fitness, luxury, swimwear, and photography. Once accepted, an influencer can set up their profile with photos and a bio to stand out to the brands they want to attract. In addition to responding to reach outs from brands, they can talk to other elite Instagrammers. Brandsnob is free to download on iOS devices with an Android app coming soon.

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Smart Easy Home Security

In this day and age its more important than ever to keep your home or dorm safe and protected. Most home security systems can be quite the investment, or impractical for those spending just a couple of semesters in a dorm room. Finally there is a solution that bridges this security gap. A proper security system like the smanos DIY Self Monitored W020 alarm system is the way to go.


Made with simplicity as the key design feature, it is as easy as plugging it in and downloading the free iOS or Android smartphone app. From there it’s simply a matter of connecting it to wifi. Like any proper home protection device, the W020 creates quite a loud and intimidating alarm when it is triggered. Guaranteed to be the last thing any unwanted guests want to hear. Given the smartphone integration, you will be sent push notifications as soon as its triggered so you always know whats going on even when youre away. With the app you can change any settings, like the siren volume and time, exit and entry delays, and other security functions. Its a smart alarm system that doesnt require a contract or monthly fees.

Smanos has another device in their security arsenal called the IP6 camera. It connects to your WiFI network as well, allowing you to see and hear everythings that going on in your home. Itll even allow two-way communication. Put the W020 and IP6 together and you have a simple plug and play security solution for your house or dorm. You can purchase these smanos items from, or

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