The best March Madness apps for iPhone, iPad and Mac

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March Madness is here. Will your bracket survive? Photo: Cult of Mac

It’s that time of year when office work comes to a standstill for weeks thanks to the NCAA’s annual celebration of sweat, leather and nylon nets. The brackets have been set and teams are en route to play the 67 basketball games that will take place over the next few weeks, with Kentucky being the undisputed favorite to walk away with a perfect season.

Thanks to the glories of technology, you can follow all the action this year even if you don’t have a cable subscription. With the right combo of apps, you can get expert insight into your favorite Cinderella team, watch every game — and maybe even pick the perfect bracket.

Dominate March Madness this year with these apps for Mac and iOS:

How to stream the Super Bowl for free to your iPad or iPhone

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You don't need cable to watch the game on your iPad. Photo: NFL
You don't need cable to watch the game on your iPad. Photo: NFL

This year’s Super Bowl will be streamed for free over the internet in full HD, no cable subscription required. Completely unbundling the big game is an effort on NBC’s part to promote its TV Everywhere service, which ironically requires a cable subscription.

11 hours of content will be streamed for free on game day, February 1. That includes the full game, commercials, halftime show with Katy Perry and Lenny Kravitz, and even an episode of The Blacklist.

Want NFL on your iPad? DirecTV loosens grip on cordcutters

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The squads of the NFC and AFC are gearing up for training camp in just a few weeks, and the NFL is ready to make a killing by feeding your leather and spandex addiction with an NFL Sunday Ticket package that stream every game to your iPad, even if you don’t have a satellite subscription.

In a huge victory for cord-cutters, DirecTV is finally ready to loosen restriction to make it easier for non-subscribers to pay for the NFL Sunday Ticket, but it’s not going to be cheap.

Pear Sports’ new monitor is the workout coach you always wanted

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Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac
Pear Sports' workout system pairs a heart rate monitor with comfortable earbuds and a mobile app. Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

I’ve been a runner for a long time. I trained for (and ran) the 1994 Los Angeles Marathon. I’ve run 5K races, half marathons and relays for full marathons up here in Alaska, too. I find that running gives me the best bang for my buck: All I need is a pair of running shoes, some appropriate clothing (it gets cold up here), and some music to keep me getting out there.

Recently, though, I’ve been playing with a new bit of gear: the Pear Sports heart rate monitor, paired with a set of earbuds engineered to stay in your ears while working out, plus a pretty fantastic mobile app to make sense of the heart rate data.

Hands on: How iOS 8’s Health app will change your fitness game

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With the release of iOS 8 just months away, there is plenty for users to look forward to. While fitness fanatics have had to rely on third-party apps, the upcoming version of iOS introduces a dedicated Health app. Today’s video brings an inside look at the new app and how you can anticipate using it later this year.

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PhotoProX Waterproof Case With Interchangeable Lenses [Review]

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PhotoProX byOptrix
Category: Cases/photography
Works With: iPhone 5/S
Price: $150

A waterproof case for your iPhone is more fun than you might think – especially one that is designed to fit onto any of a zillion different action mounts. And a waterproof case for your iPhone that also comes with a box of interchangeable lenses is even better.

Last summer I used a Griffin case to take photos in the pool, kayaking at the lake and in many other places I would never usually take a phone, let alone a camera. That case broke (thankfully not when it was submerged), and also took bad pictures thanks to the cheap plastic window over the iPhone lens.

The Optrix PhotoProX has no such problem, thanks to the proper, screw-on lenses. And its no slouch as a case, either. In fact, I’d say that not only is it the best waterproof iPhone case I’ve tested, it’s the best rugged iPhone case I’ve tried, too.

Tunewear Jogpocket, A Fanny Pack For Your iPhone

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You know what’s cool? Armbands that hold you iPhone while you’re jogging. And you know what’s cooler than cool? Fanny packs. So it seems obvious that a gadget that combines these two into one would be pretty much the best thing ever. Better, even, than a choc’n’bacon flavored lightsaber.

And here it is, the Tunewear JOGPOCKET for Smartphones.