Consumer Reports January 2021

Ratings, recommendations, reliability reports, safety and price comparisons from the world’s largest consumer testing center. Helps consumers make better choices for everything from cars to cell phone service. The only magazine of its kind: Expert, independent, nonprofit. 100% unbiased. Consumer Reports accepts no outside advertising.

United States
Consumer Reports, Inc.
6,49 $ CA(TVA Incluse)
31,22 $ CA(TVA Incluse)
12 Numéros

dans ce numéro

1 min
making smart devices safer

IN THE PAST FEW YEARS, our homes have become filled with products that can connect with each other. TVs, lights, doorbells, vacuums, even our sprinkler systems are now often designed to connect to the internet and communicate with us. In fact, CR has rated hundreds of these smart products, extolling the many ways they make our lives easier, more enjoyable, and safer, too. But while these smart devices have brought us greater convenience and made our homes more efficient, they also require us to be smart about how we use them. At CR, we always want to ensure that you are making informed choices about the products you bring into your home, and it’s no different with these devices. Security cameras and video doorbells are real game changers when it comes to increasing…

4 min
building a better world, together

Improving Air Travel Safety WHAT’S AT STAKE As recently as October 2020, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention acknowledged the risks inherent in travel during the COVID-19 pandemic, saying that “staying home is the best way to protect yourself and others.” Yet many Americans are weighing those risks against a yearning to spend time with family or a need to fulfill an out-of-town professional obligation. The problem is, we don’t have a reliable standard for assessing the risks that plane travel poses. Although the Department of Transportation has issued onboard safety “best practices” ranging from air filtration and cleaning standards to social distancing and masking guidelines, these are merely recommendations. As such, they’ve largely been left to the discretion of individual airlines and airports. “It’s the Wild West for anyone considering flying right…

7 min
your feedback

“Your Guide to Safer Drinking Water,” in our November issue, revealed results of our test of 45 bottled water brands and offered ways to protect yourself from potentially toxic chemicals. Readers shared their concerns. To add your voice, go to THANK YOU for your recent article about contaminants in drinking water and also your previous research related to metals in baby food. I feel blindsided that innocuous things contain unsafe contaminants. I feel like I’m fighting an invisible enemy, and your research has helped me to eliminate some possible sources. —Lauren Freeman, Seattle IF YOU READ most labels on bottled water, you will see that it is taken from municipal supplies just like your own town water. It is my impression that the only water that can be labeled “spring water” is…

3 min
what we’re testing in our labs…

5G Smartphones WE TESTED: 15 models WE TEST FOR: Quality of a model’s front and rear cameras, display, battery life, and overall performance. We also assess ease of use and durability when dropped. ABOUT THE SCORES: Median: 79 Range: 68-85 First Place 5G & Great Photos Samsung Galaxy Note20 Ultra 5G, 128GB $1,300 85 OVERALL SCORE Durable & Excellent Display Apple iPhone 12 Pro, 128GB $1,000 82 OVERALL SCORE Long Battery Life (40 Hours) LG Velvet 5G, 128GB $600 72 OVERALL SCORE Air Fryers WE TESTED: 31 models WE TEST FOR: Ease of use of a model’s controls, how quietly it operates, and how easy it is to clean. We also measure the food basket capacity of each model. ABOUT THE SCORES: Median: 66 Range: 47-75 Hot Deal GoWise USA GW22731 $80 73 OVERALL SCORE Easiest to Clean Power AirFryer XL $100 70 OVERALL SCORE Large Capacity Ninja Foodi 2-Basket DZ201 $180 68 OVERALL SCORE Ask Our Experts My air fryer has started giving off a burnt…

3 min
where’s the best place to put my extra freezer?

Since the pandemic began last spring, many Americans have invested in a stand-alone freezer (or even a second fridge) in an effort to increase food storage space so that they can limit trips to the supermarket. It makes sense to put that extra fridge or freezer somewhere out of the way—such as in a garage. In fact, a number of freezer models we test are marketed as “garage ready.” But if the space isn’t insulated, you might not want to keep it there. “You need to make sure that the unit is not exposed to temperatures above 110° F or below 0° F because that may damage a freezer or fridge,” says Larry Ciufo, who oversees our freezer tests. Wendy Treinen, director of brand and product communications at GE Appliances, says,…

1 min
find the right smartwatch for your budget

SMARTWATCHES HAVE a lot to offer: They can track your sleep and fitness goals, turn speech into texts, and pay for coffee with a single tap. But many popular models aren’t cheap: The new Apple Watch Series 6, which sits at the top of our smartwatch ratings, is also one of the most expensive, starting at $400 for a 40-mm GPS-only model and $500 for the cellular-capable model. However, the Apple Watch SE—released at the same time as the Series 6 but with a more budget-friendly starting price of $280—represents a new middle ground for consumers. The SE looks similar to the Series 6 and has many of the same features, including sleep-tracking, an always-on altimeter, and a compass. It also includes Fall Detection, and Family Setup (a tool for monitoring…