Google Map hacks and more in this week’s staff picks

 In News, Staff Picks

Happy Friday! Here are the most interesting tech stories we read this week.

 12 incredibly useful things you didn’t know Google Maps could do (Read by Alexandria H.)

My sense of direction is worse than the average Joe, so I rely heavily on Google Maps to get me where I need to go. But Google Maps does much more than navigate. It can beam a map directly to your car or take you back in time to see what a street looked like in the past. I wish I’d known sooner about its advanced gesture capabilities, which let you zoom in and out with a single finger, or go completely hands free. For a list of other handy, but lesser known Google Maps shortcuts and features, read on. You can thank me later.

Amazon Key is a new service that lets couriers unlock your front door (Read by Camillia S.)

It seems like every few weeks we have a staff pick about Amazon, but it’s with good reason. The company continues to push the envelope, and Amazon Key is no different. This new service will enable Amazon couriers to deliver packages inside your home, instead of leaving them on the front porch, when you’re not there. Before you worry about potential theft, the service is dependent on a camera that live streams deliveries and saves the footage to the cloud. In addition to the camera, the service comes with a compatible smart lock and free installation. Amazon Key launches on Nov. 8 in the 37 U.S. cities where Amazon staff currently make home deliveries. While this is great for people who live in apartments, I think I’ll stick to my usual method of delivery for now.

You’ll wear what they tell you to wear (Read by Camillia S.)

Although not quite so techy, this article is definitely worth the read. We’re living in an era of convenience as a service, and with each innovation we become a bit more spoiled or downright lazy. But where do we draw the line? In this article, two authors test out clothing subscriptions to see if they’re worth the monthly fee and if their stylists, aka customer service reps, know their stuff. The verdict? The journalists weren’t sold—on the clothes or the convenience. And neither am I. For me, fashion is a form of expression, and shopping is—and will always be—the perfect outing for a Saturday afternoon.

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