How To Use TikTok On PC

For months, trying to use TikTok on a PC has been a tough challenge. We were forced to use strange desktop apps or try to force workarounds with Android emulators, but that day has come to an end.

TikTok has now finally released a TikTok PC app and it’s available straight within the browser. For the most part, the functionality works the same as it does on the mobile, although you’ll need to wrap your head around the desktop layout, which can be a little confusing at first. Some features are also disabled, but it’s a great first start for desktop users.

How To Browse TikTok On Your PC

To access TikTok on PC, simply visit TikTok.com. Once you’re there, click the Watch Now button to get started. You now have access to TikTok on your desktop. 

You can browse by clicking on each video panel on the trending homepage to watch it, or click discover in the very top right to find more content.

You may notice that functionality is a little bit limited. You won’t be able to search for specific tags or phrases, but there is a workaround. If you want to search for a specific tag, simply click on the URL bar at the top of the page and type the following address:

https://www.tiktok.com/tag/KEYWORD-HERE.

Unfortunately, functionality has been limited to encourage more installs to mobile devices, so this is the only workaround to browse past the standard trending tags right now. 

You can also manually search for specific users by using the following URL – https://www.tiktok.com/@USERNAMEHERE. 

For now, these are the main workarounds you’ll need to use to browse TikTok on your PC. We predict TikTok will limit functionality on PC for the foreseeable future so you should bookmark this page in case you need to follow our guide again.

How To Upload TikTok Videos & Access Your Account On PC

You can upload videos to TikTok on PC through the main website, and functionality is similar to the mobile app when you follow our steps below. First, visit TikTok.com and click Watch Now if you haven’t already. 

After, click the upload button in the top right, and then choose the login option you’ve used for your account in the past. If you’re new to TikTok, you can use another social platform like Twitter or Instagram to login and automatically create an account. 

We would highly recommend downloading the TikTok app first, and setting up your account there as you’ll have more control in the app itself.  You can download the TikTok iOS app here and the Android app here. If you need to learn the basics, you can find out how to use TikTok on mobile here.

Once you have signed in, you can start to upload videos. Simply click the upload video at the top right of the screen at any time to get started. You’ll be taken to the upload page. You can click Select a Video to Upload to be taken to your file browser on your computer. Navigate to a video you’d like to upload, and then double click it to start uploading.

It’s important to know that the video must be under 60 seconds in length and 720×1280 resolution or higher. Videos shot in portrait mode will always work out better, but landscape videos will upload too. When a landscape video is viewed, they’ll have black bars above and below the video. 

Whilst your video is uploading, you’ll have some options to edit the caption, tag users, and add hashtags. Click either of the @ or # symbols and you’ll be able to type to find tags. 

When you start typing, suggestions will appear. This is useful if you want to find popular hashtags, because the results will showcase just how many TikTok videos have been posted for each hashtag. You can read our TikTok marketing guide if you need help with choosing Hashtags.

Many of TikTok’s most powerful editing features are lost on the desktop. You cannot choose music, which is one of TikTok’s biggest features and you cannot add captions on the video itself. However, for those that struggle to upload regularly from their mobile, it’s a great alternative.

If you want to try and get all of the features for TikTok, an alternative option would be to download an Android emulator on your PC. That way, you can download the mobile app within the emulator and get access to all features.

This approach has some difficulties, though. TikTok often crashes or doesn’t respond when you try to upload through an emulator – the developers try their hardest to stop emulator usage so it’s hit or miss whether it’ll actually work.

Will Full TikTok Functionality Come to Desktop Soon?

TikTok is taking a similar approach to Instagram with how they provide access from the browser. Functionality is purposely limited to encourage more app installs.

Unfortunately, this means TikTok’s desktop usage may always lack the great video editing features available on mobile. On top of this, uploading content through Android emulators rarely works. There are many Microsoft Store apps that claim to offer TikTok features on desktop, but through our research we’ve yet to find one that genuinely works.

So what does this mean? You’ll either need to settle for the limited functionality on the official TikTok website, or if TikTok is paramount to your work or social life, you’ll need to change up your workflow so that you can easily transfer videos to and from your mobile device to upload them there.

Did our guide to using TikTok on PC help you? Let us know your thoughts, or reach out and ask for advice by leaving a comment below. 

Should I Update My BIOS? How To Check If One Is Needed

Your computer’s BIOS or Basic Input/Output System is a hardwired computer program that allows your operating system to communicate with the hardware attached to the computer. It’s also the part of the computer that starts up and prepares the PC before the operating system takes over. 

In other words, it detects all attached devices, checks that they are working properly and lets you know if something is wrong before the operating system of your choice loads.

Your BIOS is written onto a read-only flash memory chip that’s unaffected by the power being cut or anything that goes wrong with your operating system. That doesn’t mean the BIOS itself can’t be updated. Through a process known as “flashing”, your BIOS can be updated with new versions released by the motherboard maker. 

But should you update your BIOS? How is it even done?

When You Should Update Your BIOS

A BIOS update is no trivial thing. If it goes wrong for some reasons, you could very well end up with a motherboard that won’t turn on, in which case you either have to buy a new one or send it for a BIOS chip replacement. Some modern motherboards do however have a “dual” BIOS, where a second backup chip can be used to restore the primary one. Consult your motherboard documentation if you want to know if yours has this feature.

If your computer is working just fine and you have no trouble with it, then you can probably stop worrying about updating your BIOS. That is, unless the new BIOS version adds specific features that you want. 

You should also update your BIOS if there are critical security flaws that need patching or you intend to upgrade to a new CPU. CPUs that are released after your BIOS was created may not work unless you are running the latest version of the BIOS. Motherboard makers usually have a CPU support list for each motherboard, which shows the BIOS version needed for that CPU as well.

If there’s no highly desirable feature, major bugs or hardware upgrade on the cards, then you are probably better off leaving your BIOS alone.

BIOS vs UEFI

While the common practice is still to use the term “BIOS”, most modern computers have something called a UEFI or Unified Extensible Firmware Interface. This is the fancy modern equivalent of a BIOS. 

UEFI comes with a long list of improved features compared to an old-school BIOS, but for our purposes there’s no real difference here. Updating your BIOS/UEFI works almost exactly the same. 

What You’ll Need To Update Your BIOS

There are two main ways to update your BIOS. One is from within the BIOS’ own interface, before your operating system has even started. The other is from within your operating system, using a BIOS flashing utility provided by the motherboard maker. 

We strongly recommend that you use an operating system-based utility if that option is open to you. There are a few reasons for this, the most important of which is that if something goes wrong with the BIOS reflash, you can still do something about it while the computer has not yet rebooted.

In other words, flash the old BIOS back or retry flashing the new one. It also helps that most good motherboards makers have update utilities that are essentially automated, making your life easy.

If you do need to update the BIOS from the BIOS menu itself, usually because there is no operating system installed, then you’ll also need a USB thumb drive with a copy of the new firmware on it. You’ll have to format the drive to FAT32 and use another computer to download the file and copy it to the drive. We’ll walk you through the specific process a little further down.

Is an Update Available?

There are two ways to easily check for a BIOS update. If your motherboard manufacturer has an update utility, you’ll usually simply have to run it. Some will check if an update is available, others will just show you the current firmware version of your present BIOS.

In that case, you can go to the downloads and support page for your motherboard model and see if a firmware update file that’s newer than your currently installed one is available. 

You can also use a utility such as CPUZ to check your current BIOS version or, as a last resort, boot into the BIOS menu and check the version number there. 

Updating Using a Utility

The computer we’re working with here has a Gigabyte motherboard, so we have to download the Gigabyte update utility, which is known as @BIOS. Each motherboard brand and model may be different. So look for an equivalent utility for your specific board.

Once the utility is downloaded, all we have to do is run it. It detects the current BIOS version and checks for an update. If it finds one, it will ask us to initiate the update. You can also manually flash a firmware file you’ve downloaded with this utility as well. 

This is useful in case you need to go back to an older version of the BIOS because of compatibility issues, new bugs or performance degradation

Updating Using The BIOS/UEFI

Assuming that you’ve downloaded the new firmware file and copied it to a flash drive, restart your computer and then press the key to boot into the BIOS. This is usually either the Del or F12 key, but check your motherboard manual for the exact method. Your BIOS will probably look something like this.

Each BIOS looks different,  but it should be an option that either mentions updating or flashing the BIOS. If you choose the option, it should allow you to select the firmware file from the USB drive. After doing all the appropriate confirmations, the flashing process should complete.

In the case of our Gigabyte board, the utility is called “Q-flash”.

Unfortunately the UEFI screenshot function doesn’t work while Q-flash is launched, but the utility simply asks you for the location of the updated firmware file and then flashes the BIOS. Simple!

Important Tips

Make 200% sure that the firmware you download is actually meant for your motherboard. Some motherboard models have multiple hardware revisions. So it’s important to match the update to your exact board. It’s also very important that the flashing process not be interrupted in any way. Whether by a power cut or you pushing the reset button. 

We have never experienced a bricked board or failed flash ourselves, but they do happen and it can be a real pain to fix. So follow your motherboard manufacturer’s instructions to the letter and make sure you understand the process before even attempting it. The good news is that, one way or another, the flash should be over in a few seconds.

Grubhub vs. DoorDash – Which Is Better?

App-based food delivery services have gained popularity in recent years at the same acceleration of ridesharing apps such as Uber and Lyft. The world today is more instant and mobile than we could have imagined a decade ago.

The rise of the fast food industry brought both convenience and affordability in comparison to traditional restaurants. What was newly a convenience decades ago may be viewed as an inconvenience today, and third-party food delivery apps seek to challenge that.

Uber Eats rose to popularity on the back of its ridesharing service, but there are many similar apps—notably and rising, Grubhub and DoorDash. However, each of these food delivery services are presented by a very different set of features and apps.

In this article, we’re going to compare Grubhub vs. DoorDash so you can decide which of these two popular food delivery services is the easiest for you to use.

Grubhub vs. DoorDash: Availability

If you’re in a major US city, you’ll have no issue accessing dozens of restaurants through both Grubhub and DoorDash. If you’re not, then you may struggle—especially with DoorDash.

Although DoorDash reached availability in all 50 states in January 2019, Grubhub’s service area is much wider-ranging. On its official website, Grubhub boasts over 300,000 restaurants (155,000 partnered) in over 3,200 US cities. Outside of the US, it’s also available in London.

While DoorDash is dwarfed in comparison, it is available in major locations in the US and Canada.

Due to many more years in the industry and a much larger market share, Grubhub is much more accessible across the US.

Grubhub vs. DoorDash: Costs and Fees

Fees are the biggest downside to using a service such as Grubhub or DoorDash. These apps will require you to pay a service fee, delivery fee, and tip. With DoorDash, you’ll more often pay a service fee to both DoorDash and the restaurant you’re ordering from. 

Grubhub typically does not include restaurant service fees but more often requires minimum order amounts. Both services allow you to enter a custom tipping amount if the preset ranges aren’t satisfactory.

Grubhub has a higher number of national partners than DoorDash, allowing them to offer more competitive pricing. Grubhub also offers a wider range of special promotions.

On the Perks page of Grubhub’s app, you can find several offers for free delivery and cash off. Switching from the Redeem to Earn tab, you can also earn other rewards by spending a minimum amount at eligible restaurants.

DoorDash also routinely offers special promotions—several of their featured restaurants offer $0 delivery on your first order or on an order over $10—but Grubhub’s comes with more savings in the long run.

If DoorDash is your preference and you’re trying to squeeze out more savings, look into getting a Cash App debit card. Cash App offers a number of Boosts, including one that unlocks 10% off on each DoorDash order. This can really add up.

When it comes to costs and fees, it’s mostly a matter of which restaurants you prefer and how you choose to use each app.

Grubhub vs. DoorDash: Subscription Service

In February of this year, Grubhub finally released a subscription service to directly compete with DoorDash’s. Grubhub+ offers unlimited free delivery and 10% cashback. It comes with a free 14-day trial and then bills at $9.99/month after.

DoorDash’s DashPass has been around for much longer and offers free delivery on orders of $10 or more. Its free trial is twice as long, at 30 days.

Both services provide free delivery only at select restaurants. With Grubhub having a much wider selection of restaurants, you’ll get more mileage out of Grubhub+. Grubhub+’s 10% off is especially good if you aren’t a Cash App debit cardholder and can’t unlock the 10% off DoorDash Boost. Otherwise, both services are nearly the same.

Due to more perks and restaurants eligible for free delivery, Grubhub+ shines over DashPass.

Grubhub vs. DoorDash: Ease of Use

Both Grubhub and DoorDash are available on iOS and Android, so it’s an even playing field in that respect. However, DoorDash UI/UX is much more impressive than Grubhub’s.

DoorDash’s promotions and specials are all neatly organized at the top of the app’s home screen. When you open your DoorDash app, you’ll immediately have access to your favorite restaurants, DoorDash’s national partners, free delivery offers, and more.

Grubhub’s app also shows your favorites, partners, and offers, but they’re a little less accessible upon opening the app—you’ll have to scroll down through the list of restaurants to see them in a more fragmented way.

However, on the My Grubhub screen, you can find a consolidated view of your saved restaurants, deals, and more. The problem is that it’s easy for most users to assume that this page relates to your account information, so it goes often overlooked.

DoorDash also rises above in the features department thanks to group orders. Group ordering allows you to send a link to a friend who also has the app installed, letting them participate in an order with you.

Both you and this friend can add your items to the order separately, and DoorDash even sometimes offers coupons and promotions specifically for group orders. All members of the group order will then be able to see the delivery status and map once the order is placed.

DoorDash’s app feels more polished and intuitive than Grubhub’s. If we had to choose one of these services based on app design alone, DoorDash is the pick.

To quickly summarize, Grubhub is more widely available than DoorDash and Grubhub+ is an overall better deal than DashPass, assuming you don’t have the Cash App debit card. However, when it comes to user-friendliness and features, DoorDash’s app looks and feels much better than Grubhub’s. It’s a very healthy competition between these two services.

We’d love to know whether you prefer Grubhub vs. DoorDash and why. Drop us a comment below and let us know.

Uber vs Lyft: Which Service to Use for Newbies

Uber and Lyft are the two most popular ride-sharing apps out there. If you’re like most people, you use them on a regular basis—but the two apps differ in a couple of big ways, price being the most obvious. 

If you’re new to ride-sharing, Uber is the go-to option for most people, but Lyft is definitely worth considering. In the battle of Uber vs Lyft, this article will break down the differences between the two services and help you decide which one to use.

Price

Uber and Lyft both have set fees for their rides, but the fees can vary based on time of day and demand for the service. Uber’s “Surge Pricing” can send fees soaring to seven or eight times their normal cost; this type of pricing happens most often around busy holidays such as New Year or Cinco de Mayo, when users are out drinking and unable to drive home. While Lyft also has surge pricing, their fees tend to remain lower.

Of course, both services will show the price before the ride. You should always compare Uber vs Lyft to find the lowest priced option for where you want to go. While it seems obvious the two would be similar, you can find savings of $10 or more in some instances.

Subscriptions/Passes

Both Uber and Lyft have expanded beyond just ride-hailing services. Both companies offer their own version of a monthly pass, although the benefits differ between the two.

Uber offers the Uber Rewards program that lets users build up points for Uber rides and UberEats orders. You can build up points to get discounts on rides and other rewards. Uber Rewards is completely free, so there’s no downside to using it. 

However, Uber also offers the Ride Pass for $25 per month for frequent users. The service promises to provide “protected pricing” for specific routes no matter the weather or time of day. In theory, this means you can avoid surge pricing. Ride Pass also allows free use of JUMP Bikes and scooter rides for up to 30 minutes each day.

Lyft has its own version of the Ride Pass called Lyft Pink. This new service takes the place of previous services Lyft offered as is available for $20 per month. Lyft says users that call for rides at least two to three times per week will get the most benefit out of Lyft Pink. It offers 15% off all rides, priority pickup from the airport, three fee-less cancellations per month, and three free 30-minute bike and scooter rides per month.

When you consider Uber vs Lyft, Lyft is slightly less expensive and offers more tangible benefits. 

Safety

Neither Lyft or Uber has been free of trouble since their inception. Multiple accusations have arisen of sexual misconduct by drivers towards passengers, which led to widespread media coverage and a drop in the number of female users. Since that time, both Uber and Lyft have implemented a number of different safety features to provide riders with peace of mind.

Uber is in the process of testing and implementing a feature that will auto-populate a text message with information about the make and model of the car, the intended destination, current location, and more that can be sent to authorities. All users have to do is fill in their emergency. There is also a tool that allows users to report other issues during a ride, such as bad driving or misconduct from the driver.

Uber also has another feature called Verify Your Ride that will provide a four-digit app the driver will need to enter. When the driver enters the code, if it matches the one designated for that ride, the passenger will receive a text. Uber says this feature adds another layer of protection on top of verifying the license plate.

Lyft has implemented many of the same features including the ability to text 911. One feature Lyft has that Uber does not is a smart “trip check-in” feature. This feature will detect if there are unexpected delays during the ride.

This will pop up on the rider’s phone and ask them to tap that they arrived safely to their destination, report a problem, or request emergency assistance. Lyft also says that all drivers will be required to take a community safety education class.

Uber vs Lyft: Which Is The Better Choice?

There is no clear line between the two services. In fact, the majority of drivers work for both services and take rides based on where they are the time a request comes in.

At most times of day, you will find that prices remain relatively the same between both Uber and Lyft. The difference only becomes clear during busy periods. Uber does have a leg up for international travelers, as Uber is available in roughly 70 different countries.

The decision boils down to your personal preference. If you want a service with more safety features, Uber is the better choice—but if you’re looking for pricing, Lyft tends to be the better option. If you rely on ride hailing services on a day-to-day basis, Lyft has the better ride pass option.

You can choose one over the other, but the best option is to download both apps and use the one that best fits your needs at a given time.

Do you prefer Uber or Lyft? What are your experiences with the services? Let us know in the comments below.

10 Niche & Unique Streaming Channels

The days of cable TV are long gone, with only a few diehard holdouts still subscribing to traditional television services. Everyone knows the real way to view content is by streaming it, and the Internet doesn’t disappoint.

No matter what you want to watch, whether food-focused stream for strange cuisine from around the globe or a channel dedicated to Minecraft Let’s Plays, you can find a streaming channel that suits your tastes. It’s a fascinating new world where creativity reigns. 

The problem is that some of the most interesting streaming channels are hard to find because they are not widely publicized. In some cases, this is because the streamers do not have the resources to get the word out. In others, it’s because the channel is just too niche. 

Here are some of the most interesting and unique streaming channels out there. The majority of items listed here are free, but a few come at a small monthly cost.

Pluto TV

Pluto TV is a streaming service in and of itself, but it stands out thanks to more than 200 channels you can watch entirely for free. You can find everything from the All Day Anime channel to non-stop wrestling thanks to Impact! Wrestling. 

Pluto TV is available for download from most major app stores and comes built-in on many smart TVs. Basically, anywhere you can download streaming apps, you can find Pluto TV—and more channels than you know what to do with. There’s even a channel that’s nothing but cute animal videos, all day, every day. 

Bon Appetit

Bon Appetit is a channel produced by Conde Nast Entertainment that is available for free on Roku, YouTube, Amazon Fire, and several other outlets. It’s the go-to place for high-quality food streams and content related to cooking and eating. 

You can watch professional chefs explore styles of cooking outside their area of expertise, learn to make recipes all on your own, and much more. 

Pokemon TV

Pokemon is a worldwide phenomenon represented in nearly every entertainment medium—but for diehard fans, that’s not enough. Pokemon TV is developed by The Pokemon Company International and is a streaming channel dedicated to non-stop Pokemon content. 

You can watch the animated show, movies, and catch exclusive trailers and previews for upcoming games. Best of all, this app is completely free. Just download it on your Roku or anywhere else it is available and you’re ready to start watching. 

NASA TV UHD

If you’re interested in space and what lies beyond our solar system, this is the streaming channel for you. NASA TV UHD has eight different TV series that explore every angle of NASA’s space program, including the trials the agency overcame in the past, the challenges it currently faces, and what the program hopes to accomplish in the future. 

A few of the programs include “Liftoff,” a series that takes an in-depth look at space launches and “Deep Space” which uses powerful imagery from the Hubble Telescope to peer into the deepest parts of space. Best of all, every program is shot in 4K with HDR. 

IMDb Freedive

IMDb Freedive is backed by Amazon, but funded by commercials. It’s a free video-on-demand service that lets you watch classic older television shows like The Bachelor and Without a Trace, but it also hosts a number of movies like Groundhog Dog and Momento. 

Interestingly, while most of the entries on this list are available through Roku, IMDb Freedive requires an Amazon TV Fire Stick to view on your TV. You can also watch it on your computer if you don’t want to plug in a Fire Stick. . 

Hasbro Studios Free

If you’re a fan of classic cartoons like Transformers or Conan the Adventurer, Hasbro Studios Free is a great streaming channel for fueling your nostalgia. 

While aimed at kids (due to it being cartoon-focused), the primary audience will most likely be adults in their late 30s and early 40s reliving those series they loved as kids. Even if it isn’t an everyday viewing, Hasbro Studios Free is definitely worth checking out.

CBS News

If you want a way to keep up with events around the world without paying a cable subscription, the CBS News app is a strong contender. It provides real-time reporting on news stories as they develop, on-demand video clips and segments, and even local stations. 

You can even find custom playlists curated based on your personal viewing habits. It also has CBS Sports HQ, ET Live, and other popular segments like Face the Nation. 

PBS

Let’s face it: PBS is one of the best streaming channels out there. The amount of content is staggering, and the PBS app makes it easy to access your favorite shows from years upon years of broadcasts. It also gives access to original online content and classics like Masterpiece and NOVA. 

Between the collections of educational shows, documentaries, and more that PBS routinely airs, this channel is perfect for leaving on in the background to fill the quiet or as a safe bet for your kids to watch after school. 

Baby Boomer TV

If you think good television ended somewhere in the mid-80s, this channel will be a favorite. It features classics like Bonanza and The Dick Van Dyke show. It’s a nostalgia-fest of the highest order, catering to audiences that have had time to refine their tastes. 

DC Universe

This is the one and only paid channel on this list. It earned that honor because of its listing lineup. While DC pales in popularity compared to Marvel, diehard fans will love the fact they can watch Doom Patrol, Titans, and dozens of animated movies and TV classics. 

If you’re of the opinion that Wonder Woman beats out Captain Marvel anytime, anywhere, check out DC Universe. There’s a 7-day free trial, after which you will need to pay a $7.99 monthly subscription. 

Do you know of any other unique and niche streaming channels? If so, let us know about them in the comments.