Apple workshops delight kids… of all ages!

Apple’s Hour of Code lets children — and parents! — discover the joys, challenges, and limitless potential of programming.

Google gets a lot of attention and even affection for giving away free services in exchange for our personal, private data. Apple doesn’t want any of that. When you buy something from Apple, just like stickers and cables come in the box, hundreds of millions of dollars of educational programing and probably billions in free apps and services, everything you need to start exploring code and photography and video and music and much, much, more also comes invisibly in that box.

If you think Apple products are too expensive, this is where some of that money goes, so you should absolutely go, get in on all the free classes and training, and take that money back. Even if you’ve never bought an Apple product you can still take all of it, all for free.

Hour of Code workshops is one of the most prominent examples. Apple’s been participating in the event f…

Apple's Hour of Code lets children — and parents! — discover the joys, challenges, and limitless potential of programming.

Google gets a lot of attention and even affection for giving away free services in exchange for our personal, private data. Apple doesn't want any of that. When you buy something from Apple, just like stickers and cables come in the box, hundreds of millions of dollars of educational programing and probably billions in free apps and services, everything you need to start exploring code and photography and video and music and much, much, more also comes invisibly in that box.

If you think Apple products are too expensive, this is where some of that money goes, so you should absolutely go, get in on all the free classes and training, and take that money back. Even if you've never bought an Apple product you can still take all of it, all for free.

Hour of Code workshops is one of the most prominent examples. Apple's been participating in the event for a few years now, originally using web-based tools and techniques but, more recently focusing on its still newish, free Swift Playgrounds app for iPad, and all the free lessons its been releasing to go with it.

Apple's been doing Hour of Code for a few of years now. Last year, the company introduced its Swift Playgrounds to the mix. With new and improved lessons to go with it, and the ability to control robots — yes, robots! — it makes the same kinds of code used to create next-generation iPhone, iPad, and Mac apps not just accessible to everyone, but relatable.

For the last couple of years I've gone to my local Apple Store with my school-aged god kids to sit in on Hour of Code. This year, well… I'll get to that in a minute.

In stores with the new Forums, kids and their parents gather around the giant displays, on the geometric seating, and wait for the pre-prepped iPads to be handed out. In older school stores, tables and chairs serve the exact same purpose.

Way back in the first year, one of the hour-long workshop consisted of a series of code-based puzzles the kids needed to solve. The puzzles used characters and imagery from popular games like Angry Birds and Plants vs. Zombies. Instead of focusing on the nuts and bolts of coding and forcing kids to write brackets and if statements, however, the children were asked to build pre-created modules, much like an Automator or Workflow module. They simply dragged blocks of code from the Code.org sidebar to the main canvas — code that told their on-screen characters to move or turn, as well as how much or how often.

At some of the bigger stores, Apple also brings in local developers to work with and inspire the children. This year I went to Apple Laval and a couple of the developers from Budge Studios, famous for its kids games and the new Transformers: Bumblebee game, were there to answer questions before the hour began, and to work with the kids until well after it ended.

In previous years, my god kids have asked "Why couldn't it be two hours of code?!" This year, I saw several kids say the same thing. Including a large amount of young girls, which all sorts of programs from App Camp for Girls to Girls Can Code have been working for years to provide more exposure to and opportunities for coding experience.

And their teachers. Because Apple doesn't just do the yearly Hour of Code. It also has a program called Field Trips where entire classes can come in and learn. According to the staff of the local French elementary school I spoke to, it's a huge benefit to them because they didn't yet have a coding program in house.

I hadn't realized this but not all of the material had previously been available in languages other than English but, as Apple has become more and more involved, not just Swift Playgrounds but a ton of the supplemental course material has been made available in a much wider range of languages, with more coming every year.

Hour of Code happens for a couple of weeks once a year but Apple hosts free lessons and free training on coding for kids and adults all year long. In fact, it has a fairly new course on prototyping that's straight out of some of my favorite WWDC sessions past. I can't believe it's in the stores but I'm so delighted it is.

If you don't have an Apple Store near you, you can still download the free Swift Playgrounds app and go through all the free course material. If you work in a school, Apple also has free course material available for both of its initiatives, Everyone can Code and Everyone can create.

It's not just one of Apple's biggest products, it's one of the least know and least taken advantage of, especially when it comes to things like Field Trips for schools and Apple Camp for kids, so make sure you let your friends know, let your schools know, let everyone know. Pick some classes, get some people together, and go, go go.

Photos by Serenity Caldwell.

MacBook vs. Air vs. Pro: This is the one you should buy!

The old grid is gone. The old grid is dead. But I’d argue there’s a new, almost as simple grid that’s taken its place and can help you whittle down to your ideal MacBook pretty quick.

Once upon a time, Steve Jobs drew quadrants on a slide and, if you wanted a new notebook rather than desktop, all you had to decide between was consumer and pro, for a brief time, between MacBook and MacBook Pro. Then he pulled a MacBook Air out of a manilla envelope and things got — and stayed — more complicated. Today, with an old Air and new, a 12-inch and several levels of Pro, it can seem downright confusing.

But it doesn’t have to be.

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The New Grid

The old grid is gone. The old grid is dead. But I’d argue there’s a new, almost as simple grid that’s taken its place and can help you whittle down to your ideal MacBook pretty quick.

If you just want a MacBook you can take pretty much anywhere and do pretty much anything with…

The old grid is gone. The old grid is dead. But I'd argue there's a new, almost as simple grid that's taken its place and can help you whittle down to your ideal MacBook pretty quick.

Once upon a time, Steve Jobs drew quadrants on a slide and, if you wanted a new notebook rather than desktop, all you had to decide between was consumer and pro, for a brief time, between MacBook and MacBook Pro. Then he pulled a MacBook Air out of a manilla envelope and things got — and stayed — more complicated. Today, with an old Air and new, a 12-inch and several levels of Pro, it can seem downright confusing.

But it doesn't have to be.

Rather watch than read? Hit play and subscribe for more.

The New Grid

The old grid is gone. The old grid is dead. But I'd argue there's a new, almost as simple grid that's taken its place and can help you whittle down to your ideal MacBook pretty quick.

  • If you just want a MacBook you can take pretty much anywhere and do pretty much anything with, then you've got the new baseline, the new MacBook Air.

  • If you absolutely have to have a MacBook but just can't or won't pay over $1000 for it, you have the old Air still in the lineup.

  • If maximum portability is more important to you and you're willing to pay a premium for the thinnest and the lightest, but not too much of a premium, then there's the m3 12-inch MacBook.

  • If you want a little more power as well as portability, and premium is no problem, then you can go up to the i7 12-inch MacBook Pro.

  • If you need power more than portability, and you're willing to pay a premium for that, you've got the MacBook Pro, starting with the 2017 13-inch sans TouchBar.

  • If you demand maximum power and performance no matter the premium, then you can go all the way up to the just-released 2018 15-inch MacBook Pro with mobile Vega graphics.

Yes, there still lots of room to fuss with exact processor, memory, and storage options in between, but that part has kinda always been true.

Which is why grids only ever really took us so far. So, let's try something better.

MacBook Air: The Baseline

If you need a new MacBook and that's all you really know or care about, if you're a student or teacher, if you want to work at home and at coffee shops, if you mostly use the web and documents, photos and messaging, get the MacBook Air.

It's not only the least expensive modern MacBook in Apple's lineup, it's also the simplest. You pick your color, you pick your storage, you pick your memory, and that's it. It's almost iPad simple for people who just want a Mac without all the fuss. And that's what the MacBook Air is for — everyone who wants a traditional computer without the traditional computer hassles.

Here's what you get:

It has Intel's Amber Lake processor, which is a more mobile-friendly, Y-series version of Coffee Lake, so it's the latest generation. It's just doesn't run quite as fast or as hot. And it has two USB-C/Thunderbolt 3 ports, one for power when you need it, and the other or both for just about everything else… though you'll like need a USB-A adapter or two as well, at least for the foreseeable future.

It's got a Retina display, which means a person with average vision from an average working distance can't see pixels, just sharp text and graphics, though it's not quite as bright or as colorful as the pro displays.

It's also got Apple's latest T2 Security Chip, which makes it harder for anyone to steal or infect your stuff, and Touch ID, which makes it easier for you to unlock and authorize Apple Pay.

That entry-level starts at $1199. And yeah, that's more expensive than the old model, which is still around for $999. But it's a hundred bucks less expensive than that old model was at launch, or than any 13-inch Air has ever been at launch, especially the original which, ten years ago, started at $1799.

With that entry-level, you get 8GB of RAM and 128GB of storage, which is probably fine if you do and keep a lot of your work online, and especially if you use Safari instead of a ton of Chrome tabs and apps.

If you want or need more breathing room, you can go to 16GB of RAM or an extra $200, and to 256 or 512GB, or 1.5TB of storage, for an extra 200, 400, and 1200 bucks respectively. You've got to never want to clean up or offload your Mac to shell out for that much storage on an Air, though.

If that's priced outside your reach, and you still really want a Mac, there is that previous generation Air for $999. It lacks a Retina display and a modern processor and ports, but it does have USB-A and even an SD Card slot. You can also keep an eye out for discounts and sales, because there can be good hones, and refurbs. Or, if you're open to alternatives, the iPad or iPad Pro.

Otherwise, the new MacBook Air really is the new normal for everyone who, like I said, just wants a new Mac to take with them everywhere and do pretty much everything you need doing.

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12-inch MacBook: The Ultralight

If you need a new MacBook and even the Air isn't quite thin or light enough for you, if you're an executive or manager, you're always on planes or walking trade shows, if your workload is light so you want your Mac to be the same, and you're willing and able to pay a bit more to carry a bit less, then you want the 12-inch MacBook.

Here's what you give up:

Because the MacBook is smaller, the screen is also smaller — by an inch and change, and the resolution is 2304 by 1440 instead of 2560 by 1600 pixels. The pixels are also slightly less colorful at standard instead of full sRGB.

It's got a couple hours less battery life — 10 for web browsing instead of 12, and only one USB-C port, no Thunderbolt 3 included.

It's also got a 480p FaceTime camera, which, yeah, is straight out of… I don't know… 2008? The keyboard is also gen 2 instead of gen 3, which means no inner membrane. And, yeah, no Touch ID.

Here's what you gain:

It's up to a tenth of an inch thinner and almost three-quarters of a pound lighter. And it makes the Air look positively Pro-plump by comparison.

You also get processor options. Apple didn't bump them up to Amber Lake like the new Air, so it's still the previous generation Kaby Lake Y-Series. And the entry-level comes with an m3, which is about as low as you can go. There's an i5, though, which is last year's version of the i5 in the Air. But there's also an i7, which can give you even better performance than the Air and in a package that's even more portable. If you're willing and able to pay for it.

The MacBook starts at $1299, and for that extra hundred bucks over the Air you get the m3, 8GB of RAM, and 256GB of storage.

If you want performance as well, you can go to the i5 for an extra 100 bucks or top it out with the i7 for an extra 250.

Yeah, it's a lot to pay for a little, little Mac, but if you simply don't want to carry any more Mac than you absolutely have to, and maximum portability is worth the premium, then the 12-inch MacBook is for you.

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13-inch MacBook Pro: The Workstation

If you need a new MacBook but you need it to do quote unquote real work bracket TM close bracket, if you're a pro photographer, videographer, audio producer or engineer, designer or coder, if time is money and power is worth a premium, then you want the MacBook Pro.

Here's what you give up:

It's squared more than wedge-shaped like the Air, and a quarter-pound heavier. It's also got 10 instead of 12-hours of web browsing battery life. And, at the lowest-end — well, low-end for a Pro — the 13-inch without the Touch Bar, also has no Touch ID. And while it has full U-series processor options, they're the previous generation Kaby Lake, not the current generation Coffee Lake.

All the higher end versions, though, have Touch ID and Coffee Lake.

Here's what you get:

The 13-inch screen is the same size and density as the Air, but 200 nits brighter and with a wide P3 gamut, it's much more colorful.

Processor options are… well… buckle yourself in: You can get that aforementioned dual core Kaby Lake U-series version without a Touch Bar starting at $1299 for the i5 or, for an extra 300 bucks, i7.

You can also get quad core Coffee Lake with a Touch Bar and Touch ID in either i5 or, again for an extra 300 bucks, i7. And, if you're willing to go up to the 15-inch, not only can you get a 2880-by-1800 screen, but 6-core Coffee Lake in either i7 or, for an extra 400 bucks i9.

It's a lot to pay but it's a lot of performance you're paying for.

For the 13-inch, you can go from 8GB of RAM to 16GB for an extra 200 bucks. For the no touch bar model, you can go from 128GB of storage to 256 or 512GB, or 1TB for an extra 200, 400, or 800 bucks. With the Touch Bar, from 256GB of storage to 512GB or to 1TB or 2TB for 200, 600, or 1400 bucks. For the 15-inch, you can go to 32GB of RAM for 400 bucks, 1, 2, or 4TB of storage for 400, 1200, or 3200 bucks. And to Pro Vega 16 or Pro Vega 20 graphics for 250 or 350 bucks.

That's a lot of options, and a lot of money, but if you're a hardcore, keyboard clacking, pixel pushing, RED rendering, code crunching, design daring doer, your time is worth more than money, and you'll pay just about anything for performance, then you want the MacBook Pro.

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The Decision

OK, so I know that got real complicated real fast there at the end. So I'm going to rewind and bring it right back to the beginning.

  • If you just want a MacBook you can take pretty much anywhere and do pretty much anything with, then you've got the new baseline, the new MacBook Air.

  • If you absolutely have to have a MacBook but just can't or won't pay over $1000 for it, you have the old Air still in the lineup.

  • If maximum portability is more important to you and you're willing to pay a premium for the thinnest and the lightest, but not too much of a premium, then there's the m3 12-inch MacBook.

  • If you want a little more power as well as portability, and premium is no problem, then you can go up to the i7 12-inch MacBook Pro.

  • If you need power more than portability, and you're willing to pay a premium for that, you've got the MacBook Pro, starting with the 2017 13-inch sans TouchBar.

  • If you demand maximum power and performance no matter the premium, then you can go all the way up to the just-released 2018 15-inch MacBook Pro with mobile Vega graphics.

And if even that is still too complicated, just get the new Air.

iPhone XR Review: One Month Later

This time I did something different: Used an iPhone XR side-by-side, and alternating with an iPhone 6s, so I could get a better, more real-world look at whether it’s worth the upgrade.

iPhone XR has been out for just over a month. After doing my initial iPhone XR review, I’ve still been using it alongside and alternating with an iPhone XS. For the last few days , though, I’ve instead been using it alongside and alternating with an iPhone 6s. Why a 6s? Because I wanted to get a sense not just of how cool the new colors are, though they are, or whether the display and camera system were dealbreakers compared to the iPhone XS, which really depends on the individual, but how much of a difference the upgrade will make to a real person in the real world.

Rather watch than read? Hit play on the video below and subscribe for more!

A lot of people considering the XR, people who don’t get a new phone to review every couple days, weeks, or months, have been using the same phone for a coupl…

This time I did something different: Used an iPhone XR side-by-side, and alternating with an iPhone 6s, so I could get a better, more real-world look at whether it's worth the upgrade.

iPhone XR has been out for just over a month. After doing my initial iPhone XR review, I've still been using it alongside and alternating with an iPhone XS. For the last few days , though, I've instead been using it alongside and alternating with an iPhone 6s. Why a 6s? Because I wanted to get a sense not just of how cool the new colors are, though they are, or whether the display and camera system were dealbreakers compared to the iPhone XS, which really depends on the individual, but how much of a difference the upgrade will make to a real person in the real world.

Rather watch than read? Hit play on the video below and subscribe for more!

A lot of people considering the XR, people who don't get a new phone to review every couple days, weeks, or months, have been using the same phone for a couple or few years already. That's the 6s. Maybe the 6, SE, or 7. But mostly the 6s. And, if that's you or someone you're close to, I want to take my head out of the tech bubble for a minute and put myself in your shoes.

Maybe you're ready to upgrade and you're considering giving up the familiarity of the Home button — you know, the one only tech hot takers ever thought that was boring — and try out the full screen future. But you're wondering if the $750 up front or the few bucks extra on your carrier plan is worth it for the iPhone XR. Whether it will provide value to you or yours beyond the price.

Just over a month later, that's what we're going to answer.

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iPhone XR in Brief

For people who want:

  • Edge-to-edge design with gesture navigation.
  • Optically stabilized ƒ/1.8 single camera system.
  • Depth-aware front-facing camera.
  • Face ID biometrics.
  • A 6.1-inch display.
  • Colors!

Not for people who want:

  • Classic iPhone design with Home button.
  • Optically stabilized ƒ/1.8 and ƒ/2.4 dual-camera system.
  • No notch.
  • Fingerprint identity biometrics.
  • An OLED display.
  • Android

Previously, on iPhone…

So much of iPhone XR is based on iPhone X or identical to iPhone XS that, rather than recapitulating all here, I'm going to link back to those previous reviews.

iPhone XR Battery Life

One of the biggest things going for iPhone XR is battery life. Out of the box, it gets 25 hours of talk time, 15 hours of web browsing, 16 hours of video playback, and 65 hours of audio. That compares to 14 hours, 10 hours, 11 hours, and 50 hours respectively for an iPhone 6s.

That's about one and a half times as much battery life, on its best day, or if you've already gotten battery replacement. (Mine was at 88% before I got the swap, now back at 100.)

Either way, it makes a real difference. Not just because of the capacity but because of the workload.

Back when I first got my iPhone 6s at launch in 2015, my typical usage was just starting to get more demanding. Snapchat and Facebook have come and gone for me already, but they were huge battery hits when I was using them. Instagram and even Twitter still are. Thanks to video and stories with rendered and geo-based filters, they're always downloading and displaying media, pulling GPS, and otherwise hitting the battery. Hard.

I watch a lot more YouTube now than I did back then, not coincidentally, and my single biggest battery blaster remains Pokemon Go, which didn't exist when iPhone 6s launched but debuted the following summer and its combination of screen-on time, data, rendering, and GPS just brought most phones to their knees. Or, rather, red zones.

Just for fun, I took both phones out for Pokémon Go's community day this past weekend and even with both batteries near full health, the iPhone 6s was almost dead at the end of four hours but the iPhone XR could have easily gone 4 more. I quit before it did.

I said in previous years that Apple had to start testing not for the light web browsing and email checking of the past but the social, photo and video, and gaming realities of the present. And with iPhone XR, even more than iPhone XS, they have.

One month later and I want this battery path to be Apple's new normal.

iPhone XR Performance

You can play Fortnite at 60 frames-per-second. I mean that literally. Emphasis on the * you * can. Me, personally, I can die at 60 fps and I can die well, but if you can actually play and win, you can do it pretty damn gloriously on the iPhone XR.

Same goes for pretty much any high-end game that supports it, but also heavy-duty computational photography filters, video effects, machine learning models, and more. AR quick view, by the way, where you tap a web link and suddenly you're in augmented reality is one of those features that make you think you're living in the future.

We knew from the start that Apple's A12 Bionic was going to be a beast of a processor, but that's really born itself out. Rendering short video feels like saving images and saving images feels like… like closing them without saving. Instant. I don't know. Because there aren't that many pixels to push around, even the interface moves like it's on a hair trigger.

Literally nothing outside the terrible, freeze-prone coding of the Instagram app — can we please go back to Objective C or Swift? — slows it down. It feels like you're only ever constrained by the speed it takes to pull data off the storage — which is also silly fast — or off the internet, which is about the only time anything ever really spins or makes you wait.

Two years ago, Portrait Mode could peg an iPhone 7. Last year, AR an iPhone X. This year, some of that kind of stuff can still come close, but there's just so much headroom that I think it's going to take a year or two before we see anything really put A12 through its paces. And, since one of the reasons Apple puts so much power into its chipsets is so that they'll be able to handle updates for the next 4 or 5 years to come, if you're planning on keeping an iPhone XR anywhere nearly that long, even as a hand-me-down, it should legit more than last.

iPhone XR Navigation + Face ID

For most people, the biggest change moving from an iPhone 6s, or any traditional iPhone, to the XR will be the loss of the Home button. Again, tech hot takers can bemoan Apple's quote-un-quote boring design all day long, but for everyone consistency was a tangible user benefit and the Home button was a tactile escape hatch that could reorient us whenever anything got the least bit dodgy or confusing.

That's probably why, more than a year into the age of iPhone X, we hear anecdotes about how well last year's iPhone 8 and 8 Plus are still selling. Not just because of their discounted price but because of their consistency with previous generations. Their familiarity.

iPhone XR, though, brings that next-generation, almost full-screen iPhone experience to the table, and for considerably less than the more expensive than ever flagships. In fact, the XR screen is pretty much as big as an entire iPhone 6s or 7 or 8, case and all.

In place of the home button is an upward swipe and gesture-based navigation system that took me about a day to get used to. Now, a year later, it's not just tough to go back, it's slow.

In place of Touch ID is Face ID. There are a couple edge cases where it doesn't work as well, like if you want to reach over and unlock the phone or if you want to have multiple people registered. But in every other case, it's also not just faster but so fast it feels almost transparent.

Since the iPhone XR has the same, improved True Depth camera and faster A12 Secure Enclave as the XS, you're not giving anything up for the difference in price. Same with the navigation.

It's just best in class now.

iPhone XR Display

I feel like the iPhone XR display has been beaten to undeath now and all we have are zombie lich arguments left. While some people who's knowledge of display tech seems to go only spec sheet deep raised a lot of fuss about the resolution and pixel density before launch, which is kinda like complaining about a Ferrari just because it has fewer tires that a Mack Truck, anyone who knew anything about quality vs. quantity and, you know, context, took a wait and see attitude and, generally, liked what they saw.

The truth is, Apple's display team has gotten so good at everything from color calibration to color management that you can put an LCD iPhone XR next to an OLED iPhone XS and, unless you're looking for deep, deep black and can discern high contrast ratios, scarcely tell the difference. Which is insane, given how different the two display technologies are.

Since filming my initial review, I've also heard from a lot of people who suffer varying degrees of vertigo from the variable refresh rates on OLED but who don't have that problem with LCD, and so are super happy Apple is offering both in the new design.

The bezels remain a bit thicker, not than the top and bottom on an iPhone 6s or similar, but on the sides, and then there's the notch. The black faceplate helps minimize it and while you can never not see it, you do stop noticing it, especially because the screen, by comparison, feels so much more expansive and opened up.

It's the same density at the 6s, 7, and 8, just with more pixels to fill out the edge-to-rounded edge display, and with all the DCI P3 wider color gamut, TrueTone dynamic color temperature matching, and other advances Apple has made since. You can even put it into Display Zoom mode, like Plus and Max-sized iPhones, so everything looks bigger and, if you had been squinting to see things before, you won't have to any more.

About the only step back you'll notice is 3D Touch, if you use it a lot. The XR doesn't have it. It has Haptic Touch instead, which, while ok in the few areas it's implemented, just isn't a real replacement yet. If all you did was adjust levels in Control Center, you may not notice. If you peaked and popped all over the place, like I do, you'll miss it, or at least find the XS much more attractive.

There are going to be people who want to upgrade to higher density and to OLED on the XS, and fair enough, but for everyone who doesn't give a damn about the display technology, and who doesn't look at the their iPhone from less than a foot away, you won't notice a difference.

I do care, deeply, and a lot of the time I forget which one I'm looking at.

iPhone XR Camera

I also care about the cameras a lot, and this has been the biggest sticking point for me. I've lived on a dual system and 2x since iPhone 7 Plus and it's been a challenge to go back to shooting with just one and just wide. And, you know, it's been really interesting. The sneaker zoom. The framing. All of it.

It's like shooting with a 6s again but, though both cameras are 12 megapixel, the better aperture, higher quality sensor, and all the power in the A12X image signal processor makes them feel worlds apart. Especially in more challenging settings like lower light or higher movement.

Apple's purely computational portrait mode on the XR ends up being a very different beast from the fusion version I've been using since iPhone 7 Plus and still use on XS. I still prefer the latter but being able to shoot with far greater flexibility in lighting and range has been liberating. Yes, it's still limited to humans and their faces, which is a drag, but since Apple built a unique virtual lens model just for the wide angle, different from the telephoto, you get shots that the the previous portrait modes could simply never deliver.

I still wish the XS offered both, but with the Depth Control now offered even in preview — when other vendors still can't even do the basic depth effect in preview — the XR has proven more than solid all on its own.

That's especially true for shooting video, where the XR, like the XS, can shoot in extended dynamic range up to 4K 30fps, and regular dynamic range up to 4K 60fps, and in stereo, which works better than it has any right to given you're just using a tiny camera phone. It really makes iPhone XR competitive not with other phones but with other cameras.

Stereo playback is also great. I've watched a ton of shows and films with the new wide stereo speakers and it's the first time I've felt I didn't need to where headphones to actually enjoy what I'm listening to, and I've never been particularly fussy about audio.

Portrait Selfies, Animoji, Memoji, and all the AR on the front is exactly the same as the XS as well, and lightyears ahead of the selfie cams on older, traditional iPhones. Yeah, some of it is a gimmick, but when it's approaching the holidays and you can just Santa or elf-yourself, especially in the new group FaceTime feature, a few gimmicks aren't such a bad thing.

iPhone XR One Month Later

This is the part of the re-review where I'm supposed to make up a bunch of stuff I hate about the iPhone XR just so that people in the comments won't call me biased, or just of being a fanboy, because the internet loves to mistake cynicism for intelligence and being negative, even to the point of incredulity, with being cool. Well, screw that. iPhone XR is legit a great product and it's going to be a great phone choice for a lot of people.

For me, personally, even though I like the colors and size of the iPhone XR the best, the OLED-enabled HDR video and the dual camera system will keep me on the iPhone XS. But my job isn't just to review technology for me or people like me. It's to review it for everyone.

Some people will want the deeper, brighter display, others the ability to shoot at 2x, and still others the sheer size of the Max. But for everyone else, I think the XR isn't just the colorful spot in the next-generation iPhone lineup, it's the sweet spot.

See at Apple

Apple releases watchOS 5.1.2 with ECG app for Apple Watch Series 4

Apple has released watchOS 5.1.2 for the Apple Watch. Here’s how you can update right now!

watchOS 5.1.2 bring a major new feature for the Apple Watch Series 4: the ECG app. If you own this model of the Apple Watch, you can now perform an electrocardiogram when you open the app.

Read: What’s new in watchOS 5

What’s new in watchOS

December 6 2018: Apple releases watchOS 5.1.2

Apple has released watchOS 5.1.2, which adds the new ECG app to the Apple Watch Series 4. By opening the ECG app and placing their finger on the digital crown, Apple Watch Series 4 owners can now perform an electrocardiogram using just their Apple Watch.

November 5, 2018: Apple releases watchOS 5.1.1

After fixing a bug that caused some Apple Watches that installed the watchOS 5.1 update to become unusable, Apple has released watchOS 5.1.1, which comes with all of the same features that had been included in the previous update, minus the device bricking.

Group FaceTime

FaceTime on Apple Watch now suppor…

Apple has released watchOS 5.1.2 for the Apple Watch. Here's how you can update right now!

watchOS 5.1.2 bring a major new feature for the Apple Watch Series 4: the ECG app. If you own this model of the Apple Watch, you can now perform an electrocardiogram when you open the app.

Read: What's new in watchOS 5

What's new in watchOS

December 6 2018: Apple releases watchOS 5.1.2

Apple has released watchOS 5.1.2, which adds the new ECG app to the Apple Watch Series 4. By opening the ECG app and placing their finger on the digital crown, Apple Watch Series 4 owners can now perform an electrocardiogram using just their Apple Watch.

November 5, 2018: Apple releases watchOS 5.1.1

After fixing a bug that caused some Apple Watches that installed the watchOS 5.1 update to become unusable, Apple has released watchOS 5.1.1, which comes with all of the same features that had been included in the previous update, minus the device bricking.

Group FaceTime

FaceTime on Apple Watch now support groups of up to 32 people; however, unlike its ios 12.1 counterpart the Apple Watch can only do audio.

New emojis

The Apple Watch will also be getting the same new emojis (about 70 or so) that are coming to iOS and macOS today, too. The emoji include red-hair faces, a kangaroo, a peacock, superheroes, and many more!

New watch faces

Apple Watch Series 4 models will also receive the full-screen Color watch face, which allows you to pick from dozens of shades if you like the minimalist watch face style!

October 30, 2018: Apple halts release of watchOS 5.1 following issues with Series 4

Update: Apple has suspended watchOS 5.1 updates after users on Twitter, Reddit, and Apple Support forums reported errors causing Series 4 Apple Watch to become non-responsive, aka "bricked".

Due to a small number of Apple Watch customers experiencing an issue while installing watchOS 5.1 today, we've pulled back the software update as a precaution. Any customers impacted should contact AppleCare, but no action is required if the update installed successfully. We are working on a fix for an upcoming software update.

Original: Apple releases watchOS 5.1 with new emoji... and more

watchOS 5.1 comes to the Apple Watch with a few changes, including new emojis, some watch faces, and the Group FaceTime feature.

Group FaceTime

FaceTime on Apple Watch now support groups of up to 32 people; however, unlike its ios 12.1 counterpart the Apple Watch can only do audio.

New emojis

The Apple Watch will also be getting the same new emojis (about 70 or so) that are coming to iOS and macOS today, too. The emoji include red-hair faces, a kangaroo, a peacock, superheroes, and many more!

New watch faces

Apple Watch Series 4 models will also receive the full-screen Color watch face, which allows you to pick from dozens of shades if you like the minimalist watch face style!

September 27, 2018: Apple release watchOS 5.0.1

watchOS 5.0.1 has been released with a fix for some bugs that cropped up with the Activity app on the Apple Watch.

September 17, 2018: Apple release watchOS 5

watchOS 5 is finally here with all the cool new features and improvements you've been hearing about!

July 9, 2018: Apple releases watchOS 4.3.2

watchOS 4.3.2 has arrived with some bug fixes and performance improvements

How to download and install to watchOS 5

  1. Update your iPhone to iOS 11 or later.
  2. Connect your iPhone to Wi-Fi and launch the iOS 11 Watch app.
  3. Make sure your Apple Watch is charged to at least 50% and connect it to the magnetic charger.
  4. Tap on the My Watch tab.
  5. Tap on General.
  6. Tap on Software Update.

  7. Tap on Download and Install.
  8. Enter your iPhone Passcode when prompted.
  9. Tap Agree to the Terms and Conditions

  10. Tap Proceed on your Apple Watch to begin the download.
  11. Enter your Passcode on Apple Watch.

The watchOS 4.3.2 update will download and transfer to your Apple Watch and Apple Watch will reboot to apply the update. You can follow the progress on the Apple Watch screen, and once it's done, you'll be all set.

How to speed up Apple Watch updates (and why you might not want to)

If you've ever been frustrated with how long it takes to download and install an update for your Apple Watch, you should know that you might be able to speed up the process by turning off Bluetooth at the right moment. But I would warn you against it.

While it is possible that the steps below could work just fine, if you time this wrong at all, it could result in serious consequences for your installation and your Apple Watch in general. If you're confident in your ability to time this all correctly, you can try this method at your own risk.

After tapping Download and Install is step 7 above, follow these instructions.

  1. Enter your Apple Watch or iPhone passcode if/when prompted.
  2. Open Settings on your iPhone AFTER you are given an estimate for the time remaining in your watchOS download on the Software Update page.
  3. Tap Bluetooth.
  4. Tap the Bluetooth switch so that it's in the white 'off' position.
  5. Open the Watch app on your iPhone.
  6. Tap Cancel on the prompt on the Software Update page. If you've done everything correctly (which is again, not guaranteed), your iPhone will fall back to using your home Wi-Fi network to deliver the update rather than Bluetooth.
  7. Open Settings on your iPhone AFTER the Install button becomes available at the bottom of the Software Update page.
  8. Tap Bluetooth.
  9. Tap the Bluetooth switch so that it's in the green 'on' position.
  10. Open the Watch app.
  11. Tap Install.

Once again, I would highly caution you against doing this, as it could cause major problems with the update.

Apple watchOS update failing or frozen? Here's the fix!

Updated July 9, 2018: Apple has released watchOS 4.3.2.

Photographer’s review of iPhone XR and iPhone XS cameras

Are the iPhone XS and iPhone XR cameras better than the Google Pixel 3 camera? This professional photographer thinks it is in at least a few important ways.

Tyler Stalman, YouTuber, podcaster, and professional photographer has taken a look at both the iPhone XS and iPhone XR cameras and shares his thoughts.

In depth iPhone XS vs iPhone XR review & camera test by a professional photographer

Well worth your watch and sub….

Are the iPhone XS and iPhone XR cameras better than the Google Pixel 3 camera? This professional photographer thinks it is in at least a few important ways.

Tyler Stalman, YouTuber, podcaster, and professional photographer has taken a look at both the iPhone XS and iPhone XR cameras and shares his thoughts.

In depth iPhone XS vs iPhone XR review & camera test by a professional photographer

Well worth your watch and sub.

Apple releases tvOS 12.1.1 for Apple TV to fix bugs and improve performance

tvOS 12.1.1## What’s new in tvOS 12?

December 5, 2018: Apple releases tvOS 12.1.1

Apple has released tvOS 12.1.1, a minor update for the Apple TV 4K and fourth-generation Apple TV that fixes some bugs and improves performance.

What’s new in tvOS 12?

How to install tvOS 12.1.1 using Software Update on your Apple TV

Your Apple TV should prompt you to let you know when an update is available, and you can simply click through and do it. It may not prompt you immediately, however, or you may choose to do the update later when the timing suits you better. Either way, you can instigate an Apple TV update manually whenever you want to, and with just a few clicks.

Click on the Settings app from your Apple TV Home screen.
Click on System.

Click on Software Update.

Click on Update Software.

Click on Download and Install

Click on Update Now.

Wait for your Apple TV to finish the update.

Once the update is done, and the Apple TV has rebooted, you’ll be back up and running the …

tvOS 12.1.1## What's new in tvOS 12?

December 5, 2018: Apple releases tvOS 12.1.1

Apple has released tvOS 12.1.1, a minor update for the Apple TV 4K and fourth-generation Apple TV that fixes some bugs and improves performance.

How to install tvOS 12.1.1 using Software Update on your Apple TV

Your Apple TV should prompt you to let you know when an update is available, and you can simply click through and do it. It may not prompt you immediately, however, or you may choose to do the update later when the timing suits you better. Either way, you can instigate an Apple TV update manually whenever you want to, and with just a few clicks.

  1. Click on the Settings app from your Apple TV Home screen.
  2. Click on System.
  3. Click on Software Update.

  4. Click on Update Software.
  5. Click on Download and Install

  6. Click on Update Now.
  7. Wait for your Apple TV to finish the update.

Once the update is done, and the Apple TV has rebooted, you'll be back up and running the new version of tvOS.

Apple releases iOS 12.1.1 with FaceTime improvements and more

Apple has released iOS 12.1.1, the latest OS version for iPhone and iPad. Update now!

What’s new in iOS
How to install iOS 12.1.1 using Software Update on your iPhone or iPad
How to install iOS 12.1.1 using iTunes on your Mac or Windows PC
How to install iOS 12.1.1 over the developer or public beta
What’s new in iOS 12.1

December 5, 2018: Apple releases iOS 12.1.1 with new FaceTime interface and more

iOS 12.1.1 has arrived with a new FaceTime user interface and FaceTime Live Photo capture. The update also brings support for Haptic Touch for notification on the iPhone XR.

iOS 12: Everything you need to know

October 30, 2018: Apple releases iOS 12.1 with group FaceTime calls and more

iOS 12.1 has arrived, complete with support for group FaceTime calls, new emoji dual-SIM, and more.

October 8, 2018: Apple releases iOS 12.0.1 with connectivity and charging fixes

While iOS 12.0.1 is an overall minor update, it does fix some notable issues that cropped up in the iPhone XS and iPh…

Apple has released iOS 12.1.1, the latest OS version for iPhone and iPad. Update now!

What's new in iOS 12.1

December 5, 2018: Apple releases iOS 12.1.1 with new FaceTime interface and more

iOS 12.1.1 has arrived with a new FaceTime user interface and FaceTime Live Photo capture. The update also brings support for Haptic Touch for notification on the iPhone XR.

iOS 12: Everything you need to know

October 30, 2018: Apple releases iOS 12.1 with group FaceTime calls and more

iOS 12.1 has arrived, complete with support for group FaceTime calls, new emoji dual-SIM, and more.

October 8, 2018: Apple releases iOS 12.0.1 with connectivity and charging fixes

While iOS 12.0.1 is an overall minor update, it does fix some notable issues that cropped up in the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max, in particular, issues with Wi-Fi connectivity and charging.

September 17, 2018: Apple releases iOS 12

iOS 12 is a major update, with big gains in performance, Siri Shortcuts, Screen Time, and so much more.

How to install iOS 12.1.1 using Software Update on your iPhone or iPad

The easiest way for most people to download iOS 12.1 is over-the-air, directly on their device. It's fast, it's efficient, and it's simple to do.

  1. Make sure you have a recent iCloud backup.
  2. Launch Settings from your Home screen.
  3. Tap on General.
  4. Tap on Software Update.
  5. Tap on Download and Install.
  6. Enter your Passcode, if prompted.
  7. Tap Agree to the Terms and Conditions.
  8. Tap Agree again to confirm.

The download will begin automatically. If the download does not begin right away, you may see a notice: "Preparing to download." Give it a couple of minutes and the download will begin shortly.

How to install iOS 12.1.1 using iTunes on your Mac or Windows PC

If you have limited space on your device or software update isn't working for whatever reason, you can update using iTunes.

  1. Make sure you have a recent iTunes backup. Make it encrypted so all your password and other private data is preserved.
  2. Launch iTunes on your Mac or Windows PC.
  3. Plug your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch in using your USB to Lightning or USB to 30-pin Dock cable.
  4. Click on the device icon at the top left to go to the device tab.
  5. Click on Check for Update in the Summary pane.
  6. Click on Download and Update
  7. Agree to the Terms and Conditions.
  8. Enter the Passcode on your iPhone or iPad, if prompted.

How to install iOS 12.1.1 over the developer or public beta

You can install iOS 12 over a beta version of iOS 12 if your device is still running that version. Here's how.

How to update from an iOS beta to the official release

How to get and use TMs to change movesets in Pokémon Go

How do you get and use Quick TM and Charge TM to change your movesets in Pokémon Go? From beating a Raid Boss!

Movesets are one of the most important elements of Pokémon Go. Generated at random, with the roll of virtual dice, movesets can make your favorite Pokémon devastating… or just leave you devastated.

Previously, one bad moveset and your Pokémon was done. Now, with Technical Machine — Quick TMs and Charge TMs — you’ll can “re-roll” your Pokémon’s movesets and reshape its destiny.

What’s a Technical Machine?

A Technical Machine, often referred to simply as a TM, is a way to teach your Pokémon a new move. In Pokémon Go’s implementation:

Technical Machines are items you can use to permanently teach a Pokémon a new Fast Attack or Charged Attack.

In other words, a TM will let you “re-roll” either the Quick Move or Charge Move for your Pokémon, forever altering its moveset.

Why are TMs import…

How do you get and use Quick TM and Charge TM to change your movesets in Pokémon Go? From beating a Raid Boss!

Movesets are one of the most important elements of Pokémon Go. Generated at random, with the roll of virtual dice, movesets can make your favorite Pokémon devastating… or just leave you devastated.

Previously, one bad moveset and your Pokémon was done. Now, with Technical Machine — Quick TMs and Charge TMs — you'll can "re-roll" your Pokémon's movesets and reshape its destiny.

What's a Technical Machine?

A Technical Machine, often referred to simply as a TM, is a way to teach your Pokémon a new move. In Pokémon Go's implementation:

Technical Machines are items you can use to permanently teach a Pokémon a new Fast Attack or Charged Attack.

In other words, a TM will let you "re-roll" either the Quick Move or Charge Move for your Pokémon, forever altering its moveset.

Why are TMs important?

Unlike evolutions, which are set, movesets in Pokémon Go are determined at random and essentially "rolled" every time you hit the evolve button.

Many of us have been there: We catch or hatch a near-perfect or flat-out perfect Dratini. We walk it for a hundred kilometers or more, catching and hatching more along the way, until we finally have the 125 candy needed to evolve a Dragonite.

Our eyes light up. Our finger shakes. We tap the evolve button. And…

Steel Wing + Hyper Beam.

The worst moveset in the current pool and one that's nowhere nearly as effective as the best, Dragon Tail + Outrage.

So, all that walking, all that catching, all that waiting, and all that work is out the window. Pokémon Go's infamous Random Number Generator (RGN) — a roll of the dice — has spoiled your perfect Drat.

But not with TMs. With TMs, you re-roll one or both of those moves and get something better.

Why are there two kinds of TM?

There are two kinds of TM because there are two kinds of moves: Quick and Charge.

  • If you get a Quick TM, you can use it to change the Quick Move of one of your Pokémon.
  • If you get a Charge TM, you can use it to change the charge Move of one of your Pokémon.

Both are kept in, and can be used from, your Items list.

Can you use TMs on secondary Charge Moves?

Yes! Introduced with PvP Trainer Battles, you can now get a second Charge Move for your Pokémon. If you're willing to pay the Candy and Stardust cost. But, they too are generated at random. So, if you get something terrible, you can Charge TM it until you get the one you want.

How do you get TMs in Pokémon Go?

Not easily! Pokémon Go hasn't made Technical Machines available from PokéStops the way berries, potions, revives, eggs, and even evolution items are. No. If you want a technical machine, you're going to have to beat a Raid Boss or complete Special Research and hope to get the TM as part of your rewards. Your oh-so-random rewards.

The higher level the raid — from one to four normally, five for Legendary — the more rewards you get and the more likely it is you'll get one or more technical machines.

How do you use a Quick TM or Charge TM in Pokémon Go?

You can use a Quick TM or Charge TM right from the Item screen in Pokémon Go.

  1. Tap the Menu button, bottom center. (Looks like a Poké Ball.)
  2. Tap the Items button, bottom right. (Looks like a backpack.)
  3. Tap on a Fast TM or Charge TM. (scroll down to see them).
  4. Tap on the Pokémon you want to use the TM on.
  5. Tap on Yes to confirm.

Then cross your fingers and hope for the best!

Are you guaranteed a new move from a Technical Machine or can it re-roll the same move over and over again?

When you use a Quick TM or Charge TM, you're guaranteed a different move from the one your Pokémon currently has but not necessarily a new move. For example, you could use a Quick TM on an Exeggutor with Extrasensory and get Bullet Seed, which is new, but then use another Quick TM and get Extrasensory again, which is different than the current one, but not new to that Pokémon.

Theoretically, Pokémon Go could lock out TMs after you've gone through the existing pool, so you don't waste them by accident. But, if you discover a better use for a different move, or combinations or damage calculations are changed again, you might want a previous move back. And this way you'd have a way to get it.

If there's only one Quick Move available for your Pokémon, how will the Quick TM work?

Some Pokémon can only have one Quick Move, at least as the game stands now. For example, Vaporeon can only have Water Gun as a Quick Move. In those cases, you can't use the Quick TM. It's simply not an option. (Hey, at least you won't waste it re-rolling the same Quick Move over and over again!)

Likewise, if a Pokémon can only have one of two Quick Moves, the TM will alternate between them. For example, Machamp can only have Bullet Punch or Counter, so a Quick TM will simply switch you back and forth between them.

Can you get legacy movesets through Technical Machines?

Once and a while Pokémon Go changes the moves available to Pokémon. When an old move is no longer available, it's considered "legacy". For example, you can no longer get a Dragonite with Dragon Breath as a Quick Move.

And Technical Machines don't change that.

So, if you use a Quick TM or Charge TM, you'll only ever get movesets that are available to Pokémon from the current game pool.

RIP Rock Throw Omaster…

What makes some movesets better than others?

There are a few factors that contribute towards making some movesets decimating and others… duds.

  • STAB, or same type attack bonus, means you do extra damage when using a move that matches your Pokémon. For example, a Machamp (Fighting) will get STAB if it has Dynamic Punch (Fighting) but not Heavy Slam (Steel).
  • Type counter, or the ability to do more damage against specific types. For example, a Lapras with Blizzard or Ice Beam is a Dragonite's worst nightmare. A Lapras with Hydro Pump, not so much.
  • Speed, for both offense and defense. For example, you can sometimes get off three half-bar moves and finish a battle before you could get off two full-bar moves. Some moves also prevent you from dodging for longer, leaving you open to charge moves.

That's why a moveset that gives you STAB, is type-effective, and delivers significant damage per second is great. And one that doesn't… is not.

Or why Machamp with Counter + Dynamic Punch is a Blissey-breaker and Tyranitar's bane, and one with Bullet Punch + Heavy Slam is often left on the bench.

How do you know which movesets are the best?

Opinions vary. Some people look at the math and stats while others run endless simulations and still others focus on real-world experience, personal preference, or behavioral observation.

I keep a list here and update it whenever Pokémon Go makes changes or new research becomes available:

Best Pokémon Go movesets for attack and defense

Any Pokémon Go Technical Machine questions?

If you have any questions about Quick TM or Charge TM in Pokémon Go, or any advice you want to share about movesets, drop them in the comments below!

How to start a Trainer Battle in Pokémon GO

You can battle any trainer, Good and Great Friends in person, Ultra and Best Friends online, and even the Team Leaders — here’s how!

It’s PvP time. That’s right, Pokemon GO Trainer Battles are here. That means you can put together a team of your very best Pokémon and battle in person with Good or Great friends, online with Ultra or Best Friends, and any time with the Team Leaders. You can earn reward items from up to three Trainer Battles and one Team Leader battle a day, but you can battle for fun as much as you want.

Here’s how to start.

How to start a trainer battle with anyone
How to start a trainer battle locally with a Good or Great Friend
How to start a trainer battle remotely
How to start a trainer battle with Team Leaders
How to quit a trainer battle

How to start a trainer battle with anyone

You can start a Trainer battle with anyone in Pokémon GO using the Nearby interface right from the main screen.

Tap on Nearby

Tap on the Battle tab if…

You can battle any trainer, Good and Great Friends in person, Ultra and Best Friends online, and even the Team Leaders — here's how!

It's PvP time. That's right, Pokemon GO Trainer Battles are here. That means you can put together a team of your very best Pokémon and battle in person with Good or Great friends, online with Ultra or Best Friends, and any time with the Team Leaders. You can earn reward items from up to three Trainer Battles and one Team Leader battle a day, but you can battle for fun as much as you want.

Here's how to start.

How to start a trainer battle with anyone

You can start a Trainer battle with anyone in Pokémon GO using the Nearby interface right from the main screen.

  1. Tap on Nearby
  2. Tap on the Battle tab if you're not on it already.
  3. Hold your phone out so the trainer you want to battle can scan your QR code.
  4. Choose your League and Battle Team.

If you're not friends already, you'll be offered the chance to become friends after the battle.


How to start a trainer battle locally with a Good or Great Friend

With Good or Great Friends, you have to battle locally. In other words, you have to be in the same physical place and see each other IRL to begin.

There are two ways to do it. If you're on the main screen.

  1. Tap on Nearby
  2. Tap on the Battle tab if you're not on it already.
  3. Hold your phone out so the trainer you want to battle can scan your QR code.
  4. Pick your League and Battle Team.

If you're in your Friends List:

  1. Scroll down to the Ultra or Great Friend you want to challenge.
  2. Tap the Battle.
  3. Hold your phone out so the trainer you want to battle can scan your QR code.
  4. Pick your your League and Battle Team.

Then, it's on!

How to start a trainer battle remotely

With Ultra and Best Friends, you can battle from anywhere, at any time, right over the internet.

The fastest way is right from the Friends List.

  1. Tap on your Trainer Profile pic, button right.
  2. Swipe over to the Friends List.
  3. Scroll down to the Ultra or Great Friend you want to challenge.
  4. Tap the Battle.
  5. Pick your Battle Team.

As soon as your friend accepts, battle away!


How to start a trainer battle with Team Leaders

If you don't have any friends around to battle with, or you just want another class of challenge, you can also battle a Team Leader. Any Team Leader — Blanche, Candella, and Spark — regardless of your team affiliation.

  1. Tap on Nearby
  2. Tap on the Battle tab if you're not on it already.
  3. Tap on Blanche, Candela, or Spark.
  4. your League and Battle Team.

The Team Leader will accept your challenge and then the battle is on!


How to quit a trainer battle

If for any reason, at any time, you want to quit out of a Trainer Battle, you can.

  1. Tap the Exit button at the top left (looks like an arrow leaving a door).
  2. Tap to confirm.

You won't get any rewards but your Pokémon will live to fight another day!

Any Trainer Battle questions?

If you have any Trainer Battle questions or any questions about Pokémon GO, drop them in the comments below!

Best Pokémon Go movesets as of December 2018

What are the best movesets for PvP Trainer Battles, Gym defense, and Raid attacks in Pokémon Go? These!

While it may seem like Combat Power (CP) or stats (IV) are the most important factors in Pokémon Go, movesets play a critically important role as well. Movesets are the combination of the quick move and charge move your Pokémon uses in Gym and Raid Battles.

The wonderful, terrible thing about movesets is that they’re determined at random. If you catch or hatch a Snorlax, you get whatever you get. But if you evolve a Slaking, Tryanitar, Dragonite, Gyarados, Blissey, etc. or catch a Boss after a Gym Raid, they’re determined by a roll of the dice the moment you hit the evolve button or as soon as the Premiere Ball stops bouncing. That means your perfect IV Shelgon can become a less-than-ideal Salamence with just one tick or tock of the server.

The good news is that, with Technical Machines (TMs), you can re-roll your old, terrible movesets and try for new, grea…

What are the best movesets for PvP Trainer Battles, Gym defense, and Raid attacks in Pokémon Go? These!

While it may seem like Combat Power (CP) or stats (IV) are the most important factors in Pokémon Go, movesets play a critically important role as well. Movesets are the combination of the quick move and charge move your Pokémon uses in Gym and Raid Battles.

The wonderful, terrible thing about movesets is that they're determined at random. If you catch or hatch a Snorlax, you get whatever you get. But if you evolve a Slaking, Tryanitar, Dragonite, Gyarados, Blissey, etc. or catch a Boss after a Gym Raid, they're determined by a roll of the dice the moment you hit the evolve button or as soon as the Premiere Ball stops bouncing. That means your perfect IV Shelgon can become a less-than-ideal Salamence with just one tick or tock of the server.

The good news is that, with Technical Machines (TMs), you can re-roll your old, terrible movesets and try for new, great ones. But how do you know which movesets will help your Pokémon win at PvP Trainer Battles and decimate Gyms and Raids and which will make a fight simply unwinnable? Here's the newly updated list!

What are the best Pokémon Go movesets cheat sheet

If all you want is a quick reference for the absolute best moveset for the most powerful Pokémon (CP) in their most efficient roles (Attack/Defense) in Pokémon Go as the game stands today, here it is. (For more details and alternate movesets, keep reading below).

Note: I'm including defensive movesets even for Legendary Pokémon. While Legendaries can't currently be put in Gyms, that might change, or Player vs. Player or other mechanics might be introduced in the future that make it relevant.

For the Legendary and Mythical Pokémon:

Legendary Attack
Articuno Frost Breath + Blizzard or Ice Beam
Zapdos Charge Beam + Thunder Bolt
Moltres Fire Spin + Overheat
Mewtwo Confusion + Psychic
Mew Dragon Tail + Solar Beam
Raikou Thunder Shock + Wild Charge
Entei Fire Spin + Overheat
Suicune Extrasensory/ Hidden Power Water + Hydro Pump
Lugia Extrasensory + Future Sight
Ho-Oh Extrasensory + Solar Beam
Celebi Confusion + Dazzling Gleam
Regirock Rock Throw + Stone Edge
Regice Frost Breath + Blizzard
Registeel Metal Claw + Flash Cannon
Latias Dragon Breath + Dragon Claw
Latios Dragon Breath + Solar Beam
Kyogre Waterfall + Hydro Pump
Groudon Mud Shot + Earthquake
Rayquaza Dragon Tail + Outrage
Jirachi Confusion + Doom Desire
Deoxys Zen Headbutt + Zap Cannon
Giratina Shadow Claw + Dragon Claw
Cresselia Confusion + Futuresight
Meltan Thunder Shock + Thunderbolt
Melmetal Thunder Shock + Thunderbolt

And for the non-Legendary Pokémon:

Pokémon Attack Defense
Slaking Yawn + Hyper Beam Yawn + Play Rough
Tyranitar Bite + Crunch
Smack Down + Stone Edge
Iron Tail + Crunch
Dragonite Dragon Tail + Outrage Dragon Tail + Outrage
Salamence Dragon Tail + Draco Meteor Dragon Tail + Draco Meteor
Metagross Bullet Punch + Flash Cannon
(Meteor Mash)
Zen Headbutt + Flash Canon
(Meteor Mash)
Rhyperior Smack Down + Stone Edge Smack Down + Stone Edge
Togakiss Air Slash + Dazzling Gleam Hidden Power Normal + Dazzling Gleam
Snorlax Zen Headbutt + Hyper Beam Zen Headbutt + Hyper Beam
(Zen Headbutt + Body Slam)
Rhydon Mud Slap + Stone Edge Mud Slap + Stone Edge
Gyarados Waterfall + Hydro Pump or Outrage Waterfall + Hydro Pump
Blissey Zen Headbutt + Hyper Beam Pound + Dazzling Gleam
Vaporeon Water Gun + Hydro Pump Water Gun + Aqua Tail
Donphan Counter + Earthquake Counter + Rough Play
Aggron Iron Tail + Heavy Slam Iron Tail + Heavy Slam
Espeon Confusion + Future Sight Confusion or Zen Headbutt + Psybeam
Milotic Waterfall + Surf Waterfall + Surf
Gardevoir Confusion + Dazzling Gleam Confusion + Dazzling Gleam
Heracross Counter + Close Combat Struggle Bug + Close Combat
Golem Rock Throw + Stone Edge Rock Throw + Stone Edge
Exeggutor Extrasensory + Solar Beam Extrasensory + Solar Beam
Flareon Fire Spin + Overheat Fire Spin + Flame Thrower
Machamp Counter + Dynamic Punch Counter + Dynamic Punch
Electivire Thunder Shock + Wild Charge Thunder Shock + Wild Charge
Alakazam Confusion + Future Sight Confusion + Shadow Ball
(Dazzling Gleam)
Mr. Mime Confusion + Shadow Ball Confusion + Shadow Ball or Psychic
Arcanine Fire Fang + Fire Blast Snarl + Fire Blast
Swampert Water Gun + Surf Water Gun + Surf
Scizor Bullet Punch + Iron Head Bullet Punch + Iron Head
Roserade Poison Jab + Sludge Bomb Razor Leaf + Solar Beam
Pinser Bug Bite + X-Scissor Rock Smash + X-Scissor
Hariyama Counter + Dynamic Punch Counter + Dynamic Punch
Usaring Counter + Hyper Beam Counter + Hyper Beam
Jolteon Thunder Shock + Thunderbolt Volt Switch + Discharge or Thunderbolt
Feraligatr Water Gun + Hydro Pump Water Gun + Ice Beam
Muk Poison Jab + Gunk Shot Poison Jab + Gunk Shot
Amphoros Charge Beam + Zap Cannon Volt Switch + Zap Cannon
Kingler Bubble + Water Pulse Bubble + Water Pulse
Charizard Fire Sping + Overheat Fire Sping + Overheat
Typhlosion Ember + Overheat Ember + Overheat
Omastar Water Gun + Rock Blast
(Rock Throw + Rock Slide)
Water Gun + Rock Blast
(Rock Throw + Rock Slide)
Armaldo Fury Cutter + Rock Blast Struggle Bug + Rock Blast
Blaziken Counter + Overheat Firespin + Overheat
Gengar Hex + Shadowball
(Shadow Claw + Shadow Ball)
Hex + Sludge Bomb
(Shadow Claw + Sludge Bomb)
Aerodactyl Steel Wing + Hyper Beam Steel Wing + Ancient Power
Walrein Frost Breath + Blizzard Frost Breath + Blizzard
Lapras Frost Breath + Blizzard Frost Breath + Blizzard
Sceptile Bullet Seed + Leaf Blade Bullet Seed + Leaf Blade
Venusaur Vine Whip + Solar Beam Razor Leaf + Solar Beam

Again, many Pokémon have several ideal movesets, so keep reading for more!

What if you don't have the best movesets?

Movesets are like the lottery. Whether you catch, hatch, or evolve, you never know what you're going to get. Some Pokémon have upwards of six or more moveset combinations, some amazingly good, others terrible.

If you have an ideal moveset, it's great. You'll do the most damage in the least amount of time while maintaining the best ability to dodge. If you don't, not all is lost. You could still have the same type of moves, only less damaging or slower.

For example, Machamp with Counter and Dynamic Punch is one of the best attackers in the game. Machamp with Counter and Close Combat, though, is a fairly close second. Dragon Tail Outrage is the best for Dragonite, but Dragon Tail Hurricane isn't far behind.

Conversely, Machamp with Bullet Punch and Heavy Slam or Dragonite with Steel Wing and Hyper Beam... nowhere close.

New with the June 2017 Raid Battle system, you can even get Technical Machines to change your movesets. Two of the possible rewards for beating Raid Bosses are Quick TM and Fast TM, which can be used to change Quick Moves and Charge Moves respectively.

How do you change movesets in Pokémon Go? With Technical Machines (TM)!

What about secondary Charge Moves?

With PvP Trainer Battles has come secondary Charge Moves. You can buy them with Stardust and Candy, and TM them to whatever it is you need. So, what do you need? Typically, variety. If the best Charge Move is a full bar, get a secondary that's multi-bar. And vice-versa. That way, you can mix things up when and as needed.

What are the best Pokémon Go movesets for attack?

If you're looking to attack Gyms or battle in Raids, here are your go-to movesets:

  1. Machamp or Hariyama with Counter + Dynamic Punch
  2. Rayquaza or Dragonite with Dragon Tail + Outrage (or Salamence with Dragon Tail + Draco Meteor)
  3. Tyranitar with Bite + Crunch (or Smack Down + Stone Edge)
  4. Kyogre or Gyarados with Waterfall + Hydro Pump (or Vaporeon with Water Gun + Hydro Pump)
  5. Mewtwo with Confusion + Shadowball
  6. Raikou with Thundershock + Wild Charge
  7. Groudon with Mud Slap + Solar Beam
  8. Entei or Moltres with Fire Spin + Overheat (or Charizard with Fire Spin + Overheat or Blast Burn)
  9. Exeggutor with Bullet Seed + Solar Beam
  10. Golem with Rock Throw + Stone Edge

What are the best Pokémon Go movesets for defense?

If you're looking to build a Gym that will last as long as the new system makes possible, here are the movesets you need:

  1. Blissey with Zen Headbutt + Dazzling Gleam
  2. Chansey with Zen Headbutt + Dazzling Gleam
  3. Snorlax with Zen Headbutt + Heavy Slam
  4. Slaking with Yawn + Play Rough
  5. Dragonite with Dragon Tail + Outrage
  6. Lapras with Frost Breath + Blizzard (or Hydro Pump)
  7. Gardevoir with Confusion + Dazzling Gleam
  8. Milotic with Waterfall + Surf (or Gyarados with Waterfall + Hydro Pump)
  9. Donphan with Counter + Play Rough
  10. Steelix with Dragon Tail + Heavy Slam

What is the best moveset for Cresselia?

Cresselia is a pure Psychic-type Pokémon that, in Pokémon Go, is better looking than it is meta-effective.

  • Best Movesets: Confusion + Futuresight

  • Counter: Mewtwo with Confusion + Shadow Ball, Gengar with [Shadow Claw / Lick] + Shadow Ball, Tyranitar with Bite + Crunch.

What is the best moveset for Giratina (Altered Frome)?

Giratina is a Dragon- and Ghost-type with two forms — or formes. Altered is the first one available in Pokémon Go, and while it was perfect for Halloween, it's not the power house of its other form — or forme.

  • Best Movesets: Shadow Claw + Dragon Claw. One claw for each type!

  • Counter: Mewtwo with Confusion + Shadow Ball, Gengar with [Shadow Claw / Lick] + Shadow Ball, Tyranitar with Bite + Crunch.

What is the best moveset for Regirock?

Regirock is a Rock-type Pokémon, and the third of the Legendary Titans of Hoenn introduced into Pokémon Go. You know the story by now: It's got a high defense stat, which makes it tough in Raid battles but, since Legendary Pokémon still can't be placed in Gyms in Pokémon Go, not very useful beyond the PokéDex entry.

  • Best Movesets: Rock Throw + Stone Edge. Hey, rock the rock.

  • Counter: Kyogre with Waterfall + Hydro Pump or Fighter-type with Counter + Dynamic Punch or Venusaur with Vine Whip + [Frenzy Plant].

What is the best moveset for Registeel?

Registeel is a Steel-type Pokémon, and the second of the Legendary Titans of Hoenn introduced into Pokémon Go. It's got a high defense stat, which makes it tough in Raid battles but, since Legendary Pokémon still can't be placed in Gyms in Pokémon Go, not very useful beyond the PokéDex entry.

  • Best Movesets: Metal Claw + Flash Cannon. It's the Poke of Steel, after all.

  • Counter: Any big Fire-type with Fire Spin + Overheat or Fighter-type with Counter + Dynamic Punch or Groudon wit Mud-Slap Earthquake.

What's the best moveset for Celebi?

Celebi is a Psychic- Grass-type Pokémon that has tons of potential... but lacks the moveset pool to really make a dent. Confusion, which gets STAB (same type attack bonus) is better than charge beam as a fast move. Dazzling Gleam, a Fairy-type move, outscores both Psychic and the plodding cannon that is Hyper Beam, even with Psychic's STAB.

Celebi's current lack of any Grass-type Fast or Charge moves means it offers nothing as a Grass attacker at the moment. That could change any time Pokémon Go wants it to, though.

Best Moveset: Confusion + Dazzling Gleam


What are the best Pokémon Go movesets for Regice?

Regice is the first of the Legendary titans of Hoenn to enter Pokémon Go. Because it's strength is in its defense, not offense, and you still can't put Legendary in Gyms, Regice isn't as compelling as other Tier 5 Raid Bosses. (Unless you're a completionist who wants every Legendary with as high a stat set as possible, of course.)

  • Best Movesets: Frost Breath + Blizzard. Ice, ice, baby.

  • Counter: Any big Fire-type with Fire Spin + Overheat or Fighter-type with Counter + Dynamic Punch. If you lack those Metagross with Bullet Punch Flash cannon will do.

What are the best Pokémon Go movesets for Mew?

Mew can learn Fast and Charge Moves of all types, making picking the best moveset equal parts math and feels. Mew won't be topping any attacker or defenders charts, so go for what the numbers say is best or your personal favorites. The only exeption to this is that it can't learn a fast psychic move.

Since, given the variety, it will take a ton of TMs to get what you want anyway, and it won't make a huge difference given Mew's stats, you can simply keep what you get. If you really want to try your luck in the TM lottery, go for something that works well against whatever you typically fight the most, and have fun with it.

Best Moveset: Dragon Tail + Solar Beam

What are the best Pokémon Go movesets for Latios?

Latios is one half of the Eon Duo, Legendary Pokémon of Dragon- and Psychic types. In a vacuum, Latios would be a damn fine Pokémon. In the shadow of Rayquaza, and even Salamance and Dragonite, it barely makes the top 5. Still, a top 5 Legendary Dragon can still help round-out any attack team.

  • Best Movesets: Dragon Breath + Dragon Claw. When a Dragon, go all-in on Dragon.

  • Counter: Any big Dragon with big Dragon movesets. In a pinch, Tyranitar with Bite + Crunch.

What are the best Pokémon Go movesets for Latias?

Latias is the other half of the Eon Duo, Legendary Pokémon of Dragon- and Psychic types. Like Latios, Latias would be a damn fine Pokémon.... if not for the existence of Rayquaza, and even Salamance and Dragonite. But, a top 5 Legendary Dragon can still help round-out any attack team, so...

  • Best Movesets: Dragon Breath + Outrage. When a Dragon, go all-in on Dragon.

  • Counter: Any of the big four Dragons with big Dragon movesets. In a pinch, Tyranitar with Bite + Crunch.

What are the best Pokémon Go movesets for Rayquaza?

Rayquaza is the last of the Weather Trio to enter the Pokémon Go arena. It can't reach as high a CP as either Groudon or Kyogre, but it's still more than high enough to make Rayquaza the best Dragon-types in the game. And the best Flying-type. It's the Dragon part you want to focus on though — Dragon Tail and Outrage, specifically.

  • Best Movesets: Dragon Tail + Outrage. The new best Dragon-type in the game

  • Counter: Articuno with Frost Breath + Blizzard or Ice Beam., unless the Raquaza has Ancient Power. If that is so, use Raikou with Thunder Shock + Wild Charge.


What are the best Pokémon Go movesets for Kyogre?

Kyogre is one of the Weather Trio and, along with Groudon, can reach one of the highest CP in the current Pokémon Go lineup — 4074. Combined with its elite stats, it replaces Vaporeon and the newly Waterfall'd Gyarados as the most powerful Water-type in the game. Sadly, it lost it's Dragon Tail Quick Move before it even came out, but when you have Waterfall and Hydro Pump, it's hard to argue.

While Kyogre can also learned Blizzard as a Charge Move, it doesn't have a Quick Move — or typing — to match. So leave the cold to Articuno and Lapras. Likewise, Thunder is a Charge Move option, but not a good one. Let water be water.

  • Best Movesets: Waterfall + Hydro Pump. The new best Water-type in the game

  • Counter: Raikou with Thunder Shock + Wild Charge.


What are the best Pokémon Go movesets for Groudon?

Groudon is one of the Weather Trio and can reach one of the highest CP in the current Pokémon Go lineup — 4074. Combined with its elite stats, it replaces Rhydon as the most powerful Ground-type in the game. Sadly, it can't learn the more damaging Mud Slap, but it can get Mud Shot + Earthquake, which is going to be what every purist wants — and every Electric-type fears. Groudon can also learn the incredibly punishing Dragon Tail and Solar Beam, and some might want to go with those moves as well. There are other Pokémon that can learn Solar Beam, though, so do it if you don't have those options. Otherwise, let Groudon be Groudon.

  • Best Movesets: Mud Shot + Earthquake. Like Ryhdon, only Legendary.

  • Secondary Movesets: Mud Shot + Solar Beam. Because Solar Beam.

  • Counter: Gyarados or Vaporeon with Hydro Pump.


What are the best Pokémon Go movesets for Mewtwo?

Mewtwo can only be obtained from Ex-Raids right now. But, in so doing you also obtain one of the best attackers in the game. Pokémon Go might have nerfed the Legendary clone of Mew, but its base stats are still extreme, and its attacks, still devastating.

  • Best Movesets: Confusion + Shadow Ball.

  • Counter: Tyranitar with Bite + Crunch.


What are the best Pokémon Go movesets for Ho-Oh?

Ho-Oh is to the Legendary Beasts what Lugia is to the Legendary Birds — their leader. Where Lugia is cool and calm, Ho-Oh is fiery hot. Sadly, where Lugia also had movesets that made sense, Ho-Oh's are all over the map, and what really holds it back is the complete lack of Overheat. Sadness. It really makes everything else a toss up and dependant on what, if anything, you want to do with Ho-Oh. Extrasensory + Solar Beam is probably your best bet, unless you want to go Machamp Raiding with Brave Bird, or go after the big bugs with Fire Blast. Ugh, Pokémon Go. Just. Ugh.

  • Best Movesets: Extrasensory + Solar Beam. Because, Solar Beam.

  • Secondary Movesets: Brave Bird against Fighters, Fire Blast against Bugs, but ugh.

  • Counter: Tyranitar or Golem with Stone Edge, Raikou with Wild Charge or Zapdos with Thunderbolt.


What are the best Pokémon Go movesets for Suicune?

Due to the way Pokémon Go translates stats over from the Nintendo Pokémon games, the Legendary Water Beast, Suicune, ends up with the short end of the stick. So short, you can barely see it. The result is a Legendary Pokémon that's not nearly as good at its Water-type specialty than the incredibly common Vaporeon and the newly rejuvenated Gyarados. It can't even get to 3000 CP. Previously, Suicune could at least get Hidden Power Water or Hidden Power Rock, if you were really, really lucky. Now, if Suicune makes a comeback or you somehow TM yourself into a corner, all you can get is Snarl or Extrasensory.

  • Best Movesets: Anything and Hydro Pump. Sigh.

  • Secondary Movesets: Sigh.

  • Counter: Raikou with Wild Charge or Zapdos with Thunderbolt. Anything with Solar Beam.


What are the best Pokémon Go movesets for Entei?

Entei is the Legendary Fire Beast and a powerhouse of a Pokémon. Because Moltres, Flareon, and Charizard can also learn Entei's best moveset — Fire Spin + Overheat — it's not quite as glorious as it could be. But, for pure Fire-type Pokémon, Entei is still FIRE. Especially when you count in its CP: Entei can reach 3377, much higher even than Moltres. You can play around Flamethrower if you're a fan of 2-bar charge moves. Otherwise, just take Overheat and wreck with it.

  • Best Movesets: Fire Spin + Overheat. So. Much. Burn.

  • Secondary Movesets: Fire Spin + Flamethrower if you really want to shoot fast and dodge more.

  • Counter: Gyarados, Kyogre or Vaporeon with Hydro Pump.


What are the best Pokémon Go movesets for Raikou?

Raikou is a Legendary that really lives up to the name. The Legendary Electric Beast, Raikou not only has a CP that can reach 3349, it can do one thing no other Electric-type currently in the game can match: learn Wild Charge. When you combine Raikou's stats with its moveset, it catapults past Zapdos to become the best — and certainly the best pure — Electric-type attacker in Pokémon Go. We'll see how that holds up as future Electrics get introduced. For now, though, Raikou is the real zapper.

  • Best Movesets: Thundershock + Wild Charge. Literally lightning in a bottle. That it throws as a weapon.

  • Secondary Movesets: Why? Just use Thundershock + Wild Charge

  • Counter: Groudon or Rhydon with Earthquake.


What are the best Pokémon Go movesets for Lugia?

Lugia is one of the most powerful Legendary Pokémon in the game. It can easily reach a CP over 3000, it's got stats that put it up there with the best, and movesets that pack a punch. Specifically, Lugia is Psychic/Flying type and has Psychic movesets available to it that can destroy Fighting-types like Machamp. Dragon Tail with Sky Attack and Hydro Pump are powerful as well, can make Lugia a good general attacker, like Dragonite. and can put a hurt on a range of other Pokémon, but when you have a Psychic destroyer of this stature, let it be a Psychic destroyer.

  • Best Movesets: Extrasensory + Future Sight. Picture an Alakazam with the bulk of a Snorlax. Now, Machamp knows fear.

  • Secondary Movesets: Dragon Tail with Sky Attack. Still packs a wallop, even without same type attack bonus (STAB) on the fast move.

  • Counter: Tyrantiar with Bite + Crunch or Stone Edge.


What are the best Pokémon Go movesets for Articuno?

With a potential CP almost but not quite reaching the 3000s, Articuno is like Lapras on Hulk serum. OK, more Hulk serum. Unlike Lapras, though, Articuno only has access to Ice type movesets. No Water types. That makes Frost Breath its only Quick Move and, so, winner by default. For Charge Moves, Blizzard packs more power but takes longer to deliver it. Ice Beam can be spammed over and over again.

  • Best Movesets: Frost Breath + Blizzard or Ice Beam. Blizzard hits harder but Ice Beam hits more often.

  • Counter: Tyrantiar with Bite + Stone Edge.


What are the best Pokémon Go movesets for Moltres?

Moltres is a Flying/Fire type, just like Charizard, but with a CP that can reach over 3000. It currently doesn't have any Flying-type movesets assigned to it, but it has Fire Spin + Overheat, which is the best Fire-type moveset in the game. That makes Moltres, essentially, a super-Charizard. Use it to burn Bugs Grass-types down to ash.

  • Best Movesets: Fire Spin + Overheat. It's not fast but it hits like the inferno.

  • Counter: Golem with Rock Throw + Stone Edge or Tyranitar with Bite + Stone Edge.


What are the best Pokémon Go movesets for Zapdos?

Zapdos is a mixed blessing. It has better stats than any previous Electric-type in the game... but it doesn't have access to movesets that would really push it over the top. As it is, Zapdos is Flying/Electric and has a CP that can soar about 3300. For Fast move, all Zapdos has access to is Charge Beam. For Charge Move, Zap Cannon and Thunder, but also Thunderbolt. It's not Wild Charge, but it'll do.

  • Best Movesets: Charge Beam + Zap Cannon. It'l still light up water types.

  • Counter: Golem with Rock Throw + Stone Edge or Tyranitar with Bite + Stone Edge.


What are the best Pokémon Go movesets for Slacking?

Slaking would have had a CP that soared over 5000 — Five. Thousand. — but Pokémon Go nerfed it hard before releasing it as part of Gen 3. Still, with a new maximum of 4548 CP, Slaking climbs to the top of the Empire State Building and swats at the puny biplanes of every other Pokémon in the game. To balance things out, though, Pokémon Go have given Slaking the zero-damage Yawn as its one and only quick move. And that means that while Slaking looks impressive, it can't really attack and can't really defend. Thus, the biggest mon of them all is relegated to showpiece status in the current game.

  • Attack: Yawn with Hyper Beam. If you can dodge long enough to actually charge it up and get it off. And it's a big "if".
  • Defense: Yawn with Play Rough. Because it has a slightly higher chance of being charged up and set off before Slaking goes down hard.

  • Counter: Machamp or Hariyama with Counter + Dynamic Punch.


What are the best Pokémon Go movesets for Tyranitar?

Tyranitar once soared to the top of Gyms, even higher than Dragonite, based on its matchless CP. Now that any CP over 3000 is actively punished in Gyms, Tyranitar and it's severe weakness to Fighting moves has made it less of a defender and more of an attacker. You can still put a 2999 or lower CP Tyranitar in a Gym, but you really want to max out double Dark Tyranitar to take out Psychics in Raid Battles. Including, one day, Mew and Mewtwo.

Update: If you managed to score a Smack Down with Stone Edge during the June 2018 Community Day, you now have the best Rock-type attacker in the game.

  • Attack: Bite with Crunch (Smack Down with Stone Edge if you have it). Same type attack bonus (STAB) and super-effective against Psychics gives Crunch the double-dark win. Also, Bite with Stone Edge against Fire, Electric, and Poison types.
  • Defense: Iron Tail with Crunch. Outputs more damage, more quickly, even in bad matchups.

  • Counter: Machamp or Hariyama with Counter + Dynamic Punch. Goes through Tyranitar like Bruce Lee through a wooden board.


What are the best Pokémon Go movesets for Metagross?

Like far too many Pokémon Go translation, Metagross is a formidable monster by virtue of both its CP and stats, made relatively tame thanks to its less than stellar movesets. Still, it's the best Steel-type in the game right now, and with Bullet Punch and Flash Cannon, Metagross makes the most of what's possible.

  • Attack: Bullet Punch with Flash Cannon. Same type attack bonus (STAB) and, while Steel-type attacks and attackers aren't very potent in Pokémon Go, it's as potent as we have right now.
  • Defense: Zen Headbutt with Flash Cannon or Psychic.

  • Counter: Flareon, Charizard, Moltres, or Entei with Fire Spin + Overheat. Fire melts metal.


What are the best Pokémon Go movesets for Dragonite?

High CP now hurts Dragonite on Gym defense, thanks to the new system that punishes anything over 3000. A 2999 Dragonite or lower Dragonite can still fill a Gym slot but its loss of position and its double weakness to Ice moves has pushed it into an attacking role where it remains the best generalist in the game.

  • Attack: Dragon Tail with Outrage. Dragon Tail does a lot of damage fast, Outrage just does a lot of damage. Also, Dragon Tail with Hurricane against Machamp.
  • Defense: Dragon Tail with Outrage. Same as above. Damage. Damage. Damage.

  • Counter: Lapras or Articuno with Frost Breath and Blizzard. Ice is a Dragonite's worst enemy.


What are the best Pokémon Go movesets for Salamence?

In any other world, Salamence would be an amazing Dragon-type Pokémon to attack Raid bosses and defend Gyms. In any other world that didn't include Dragonite and Rayquaza, that is. In this world, Salamence is still potent, but the combination of a full bar charge move and lower durability means it often won't last long enough to unleash its full fury.

  • Attack: Dragon Tail with Draco Meteor. Dragon Tail does a lot of damage fast, and Draco Meteor is the fullest fury in the game.
  • Defense: Dragon Tail with Draco Meteor. (Though you could mix it up to confuse attackers, that only works for the first round.)

  • Counter: Lapras or Articuno with Frost Breath and Blizzard. Ice freezes even the fiercest dragon.


What are the best Pokémon Go movesets for Snorlax?

Snorlax isn't just a tank. It's mega-tank and that hasn't changed with the update. For defense, though, you now need Snorlax under 3000 CP or you can literally see them draining away. Even CP-hobbled, Snorlax can take a beating while dishing out damage and that means anyone who goes up against one is in for a tough battle.

  • Attack: Zen Headbutt with Hyper Beam. Not fast but punishing, especially againt it's main counter, Machamp.
  • Defense: Zen Headbutt with Hyper Beam. Super tough combo. (Legacy: Zen Headbutt with Body Slam, which is harder to dodge.)

  • Counter: Machamp or Hariyama with Counter and Dynamic Punch. Or anything that can do a ton of damage, including Solar Beam, Overheat, or Stone Edge.


What are the best Pokémon Go movesets for Rhydon?

Rhydon received a significant boost in late 2016, with Pokémon Go's updated formula boosting its potential up above 3000 CP. And now that's come back to bite it in the horn with the mid-2016 update that punishes high CP in Gyms. Especially given Rhydon's glass snout against Water and Grass moves. It can still sit in Gyms, sure, but now the primary use for a maxed out Rhydon is as an attacker against Fire and even Lightning Raid Bosses. With Gen 3, it can learn Surf... but why?

  • Attack: Mud Slap with Earthquake. Not the fastest but useful against Fire, Electric, and Poison. Also Mud Slap with Stone Edge against the Flying Fire types.
  • Defense: Mud Slap with Stone Edge. Still not the fastest but lots of damage, especially against those who don't dodge.

  • Counter: Gyarados or Vaporeon with Hydro Pump or Exeggutor with anything and Solar Beam. They're plentiful and powerful.


What are the best Pokémon Go movesets for Gyarados?

Gyarados has been reborn! Sure, its first-year launched its CP up above 3000 and gave it a place in the old Gym system. Then it became the first evolved Shiny. But under the new Gym system, it was little more that a bright red bragging right and occasional Bite + Crunch fallback for Tyranitar when facing Focus Blast equipped Raid Bosses.

Pokémon Go is nothing if not constant change, though, and now Gyarados finally has what it's always needed the most: A water-based quick move with Waterfall. Lightning is still its double kryptonite, but now it's made up for with the best water attack in the game.

  • Attack: Waterfall with Hydro Pump. King of the water-types, finally! (Also Bite + Crunch as a backup against Lugia, Mewtwo, or other psychic Raid Bosses with Focus Blast.)
  • Defense: Water Fall with Hydro Pump.

  • Counter: Zapdos, Raikou, or Jolteon. Take water, add a spark, watch it sizzle.


What are the best Pokémon Go moveset for Blissey?

Blissey is a tank's tank. A mega-tank. With MASSIVE amounts of HP. Thanks to the new Gym system, you no longer have Blissey running out the timer to look forward to/worry about, but its sheer defensive capability means if you have one under 3000 CP, it's still the best Pokémon to fill a Gym slot. (Just get in first because you can only have one per Gym now.) On offense, Blissey can likewise last, but that can mean running out of time against a Raid Boss.

  • Attack: Pound with Hyper Beam. It can take a while but you'll get through anything.
  • Defense: Zen Headbutt or Pound with Dazzling Gleam. Dazzling Gleam is harder to dodge than Hyper Beam, making Blissey even more frustrating. But really, any Blissey moveset works on defense.

  • Counter: Machamp or Hariyama with Counter and Dynamic Punch. Or anything that can do a ton of damage, including Solar Beam, Overheat, or Stone Edge.


What are the best Pokémon Go movesets for Vaporeon?

Eevee are so common in some areas that almost everyone has access to a high-level Vaporeon or several. Since it can only barely get to 3000 CP, there's even a chance your maxed out Vape is still viable in the new system. While it's still double weak against Grass, it also still got a lot of power behind it. That's even more true on attack, where it can hurt the Fire type Raid Bosses and blast into Tyranitar.

  • Attack: Water Gun with Hydro Pump. Fast jab, devastating uppercut. Especially good against Rhydon and Tyranitar.
  • Defense: Water Gun with Aqua Tail. Also fast and frequent enough it can force more dodging — or damage.

  • Counter: Exeggutor with Extrasensory (Legacy: Zen Headbutt) and Solar Beam. (I also like Zapdos, Raikou, and Jolteon because they multitask against Gyarados.)


What are the best Pokémon Go movesets for Machamp?

Machamp is the Blissey-breaker. The Snorlax-crusher. Tyranitar's Bane. With one early 2017 update, Pokémon Go plucked Machamp out of the also-rans and gave it a moveset that redefined the meta. With the new, sub-3000 Gym reality, you can use Machamp on defense. But it'd be a waste. Not only does an attack Machamp do serious damage to Snorlax, Blissey, and even Lapras, it does devastating damage to Tyranitar... if it has the right moveset:

  • Attack: Counter with Dynamic Punch. It hurts many of the big defenders, including Snorlax and Lapras, and devastates Tyranitar.
  • Defense: Counter with Dynamic Punch. But you shouldn't be defending with Machamp anyway.

  • Counter: Espeon, Alakazam, or Exeggutor — anything Psychic and tough, really. Also Dragon Tail + Hurricane Dragonite.


What are the best Pokémon Go movesets for Lapras?

Lapras... what a life! The late 2016 update skyrocketed other Pokémon ahead of it on the CP charts, and the early 2017 update sent Lapras tumbling down. Now, the mid-2017 update has made under 3000 CP the new sweet-spot for Lapras, and it's back in the game. Of course, Lapras still one thing best — knocks out Dragonites... if it has the right moves.

  • Attack: Frost Breath with Blizzard. You get STAB and you get to shred Dragonite.
  • Defense: Frost Breath with Blizzard or Hydro Pump. The former annoys Dragonite, the latter surprises people not expecting a Vaporeon-style defender. Once. (Legacy: Ice Shard with Blizzard or Ice Beam.)

  • Counter: Machamp. Very few things can take Dynamic Punch hurt. Also, Jolteon or Magneton with Electric movesets.


What are the best Pokémon Go movesets for Golem?

Golem has become relevant again, thanks not only to the new Gym system but the new Raid Battles as well. Given that Gyms can only have one of each Pokémon in it, and Pokémon are punished for being over 3000 CP, Golem at just below 3000 is a fine choice as a defender. It's like a mini-Rhydon without as many weaknesses. Better, though, thanks to its resistance, Golem is now really good for Raids against Fire and Electric types. And yes, that includes the Legendary Birds and Beasts. You just need the right movesets.

  • Attack: Rock Smash with Stone Edge. Not the fastest but useful againt Charizard, Arcanine, Flareon, and Jolteon.
  • Defense: Rock Smash with Stone Edge.

  • Counter: Gyarados or Vaporeon with Hydro Pump or Exeggutor with anything and Solar Beam. They're plentiful and powerful.


What are the best Pokémon Go movesets for Alakazam?

Alakazam was once the more most brutal, if glass-jawed, Pokémon in the game. Then the great moveset rebalance with the launch of Gen 2 depowered (nerfed) him hard. Alakazam may not be what it once was, but thanks to the new Gym system, at least its CP no longer holds it back as a defender. And given some Raid Bosses weakness to psychic moves, and Alakazam's still respectable ability to deal damage, it's regained its place as an attacker — and it's one of the few things that can't really hurt the big fighters, like Machamp.

  • Attack: Confusion + Futuresight. Lots of damage and little ability to resist it. Especially against Machamp.
  • Defense: Confusion + Futuresight. Same.

  • Counter: Tyranitar with Bite + Crunch. Dark STAB and super effective is devastating.


What are the best Pokémon Go movesets for Flareon?

Flareon was all but forgotten thanks to the big Fire-type depowering (nerfing) of late 2016. With the advent of Blissey, though, Flareon's powerful Overheat move began to make a comeback. Now, with the new Gym system, Flareon's CP is no longer a deal breaker and Overheat has become a Grass-type burner against several of the Raid Bosses, including Venosaur and Exeggutor. It's overshadowed by Moltres and Entei, but also plentiful enough that it can still fill Gyms or round-out teams.

  • Attack: Fire Spin + Overheat. It takes a while to charge but it's a blast furnace when unleashed against Venusaur and it's Grassy kind.
  • Defense: Fire Spin + Flamethrower. Double charge move can be used more often than single.

  • Counter: Golem with Rock Throw + Stone Edge. Rock beats fire.

What are the best Pokémon Go movesets for Jolteon?

Thanks to the new, sub-3000 Gym system, Jolteon can be used in defense if you really want to. Where Jolteon still excels, though, is on attack. Against Water types, including Raid Bosses. It may note be as critically important in an era where Gyarados, which it best counters, don't sit aplenty in every Gyms, but it'll still help take out water-types in a Raid. Sure, Zapdos and Raikou are the new top shockers in town, but Jolteon can fill a Gym slot or round out a team if and when needed.

  • Attack: Thundershock and Thunderbolt. It absolutely electrocutes Gyarados and short-circuits Lapras, Blastoise, and Vaporeon.
  • Defense: Volt Switch with Thunderbolt or Discharge.

  • Counter: Groudon or Rhydon with Earthquake. They're not just monsters, but monsters that take advantage of Jolteon's weakness to Ground-types.


What are the best Pokémon Go movesets for Exeggutor?

Exeggutor is back, baby! Knocked out of Gyms by the CP rebalance at the end of 2016, the new CP cap in mid-2017 has given its defense game new life. On top of that, its combination of Solar Beam and toughness make for a lethal attacker against many of the toughest defenders in Gyms, even Blissey. But wait, there's more: It'll hurt any Raid Boss that's weak against Grass, including Rhydon and Blastoise, and those weak against Psychic, including Machamp.

  • Attack: Extra Sensory (legacy: Confusion or Zen Headbutt) and Solar Beam. Solar Beam. It brings down the power of the sun.
  • Defense: Extra Sensory with Solar Beam (legacy: Confusion with Seed Bomb). But the CP just isn't there for it to be a real defender.

  • Counter: Dragonite with Dragon Tail and Outrage. Also, anything with Fire Spin and Overheat.

Your best Pokémon Go movesets?

These are the best Pokémon Go movesets I've seen for the toughest Pokémon and best counters currently in the game. If you have a favorite, then let me know what it is and what moveset you is best for it!

Updated July 2018 with Regice, Celebi, Registeel.