Latest Technology News

Comcast partners with WeatherBug to help Xfinity customers with energy usage

Home automation 1

Given the rising costs and environmental dangers of energy consumption, people are becoming increasingly concerned. There are a number of options coming onto the market that allow customers to monitor energy usage, a market created by climate change and a desire for cost savings.

Comcast is also in this game with its Xfinity Home offering, a service which allows for monitoring home automation, energy usage and home security. Now the company is partnering with Earth Networks' WeatherBug Home to improve its overall service.

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What's really behind iPhone Error 53 -- and how can you fix it?


If you have an interest in Apple, or smartphones in general -- or even if you just follow tech news -- you can't help but have heard about the Error 53 problem that's affecting some iPhone users. In short, it seemed that people who had used non-authorized repairers to fix their home button ended up with a bricked phone after installing the latest iOS update.

This led to vocal outcries from not just upset iPhone owners, but also the tech community as a whole. Apple responded by saying that Error 53 was to "protect our customers", but what’s the real story? Is Apple really penalizing people who don’t take their iPhone to an Apple Store for repair? And, more importantly, what can you do if your iPhone has been bricked by Error 53?

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Mark Zuckerberg is 'disappointed' at India Free Basics ban and vows to fight on


Facebook was dealt a blow today when its Free Basics program was banned in India for contravening net neutrality rules. As you would expect, Mark Zuckerberg is more than a little disappointed, but the Facebook founder says he remains "committed to keep working to break down barriers to connectivity in India and around the world".

In a somewhat bitter-sounding post on Facebook, Zuckerberg reiterated his belief that "everyone in the world should have access to the internet". But as well as hitting out at the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI), he also says he wants to keep driving to connect the whole of India to the internet to "help lift people out of poverty, create millions of jobs and spread education opportunities".

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Safer Internet Day: Earn yourself an extra 2GB of Google Drive cloud storage for free


It's hard -- although admittedly not impossible -- to have too much cloud storage space. It's possible that you were hit by the loss of Google Drive bonus storage last year, but now you have a chance to claw back an extra 2GB of space free of charge.

To celebrate, or perhaps promote, Safer Internet Day (what's that? 9 February is devoid of such a reminder in your calendar?!) Google is inviting people to perform a Security Check-up. It takes just a matter of moments, but as a reward for your time, you can bag yourself some extra space.

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Online banking: How secure is it?

Banking login Internet Online

The latest bank in the UK to fall victim to a distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack was HSBC. It claimed that no customer data was compromised. In July last year, RBS and NatWest were also hit by DDoS attacks, which flooded their websites with traffic, temporarily shutting them down. This resulted in bad publicity and complaints from many customers. Fortunately, customer accounts were not compromised so the bad publicity was all the damage the attack caused.

DDoS attacks, where bad guys flood a website with so much work that they fold under the pressure, aren’t even strictly a security issue on their own. Unless the DDoS is part of a recipe to steal stuff, it’s a nuisance that is more about someone flexing their muscles than doing damage. Luckily in the cases of RBS, NatWest, and HSBC, no data was stolen; however, they do raise the question of whether online banking is secure. So is there a security issue at hand?

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Energy industry is not prepared for cyber attacks

Boardroom security

The energy industry is mostly unprepared for cyber-threats, a new study by Tripwire suggests.

The global provider of advanced threat, security and compliance solutions announced these results in a study conducted for it by Dimensional Research. The study looked at cyber-security challenges faced by organizations in the energy sectors, and includes answers from more than 150 IT professionals.

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SSuite NoteBook Editor: not just another WordPad replacement


If you’ve tried your share of WordPad replacements then you’ll know they’re usually identikit me-too products with barely any interesting ideas of their own.

SSuite NoteBook Editor is a rare exception which manages to bring something a little more original to the standard text editing feature list.

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Don't say Enigma Software's SpyHunter is rubbish or you just might get sued


Technology website BleepingComputer is being sued by Enigma Software (ESG) over a negative review of its SpyHunter antimalware software. In fact, it's not really a review that has caused Enigma Software to start complaining about "false, disparaging, and defamatory statements", but a thread on its forums.

The lawsuit also suggests that BleepingComputer is "driving traffic and sales to Malwarebytes and driving traffic and sales away from ESG" (Bleeping Computer runs an affiliate program involving Malwarebytes) The timing of this is interesting, as it comes at the same time as the European Court of Human Rights ruled that website owners are not responsible for comments posted by readers.

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Security solution RapID wants to kill the password

Intercede Rapid

At a time where cyber security is infiltrating the consciousness of consumers and businesses alike, finding the right balance between security and convenience has never been more important.

To that end, digital identity and credentials firm Intercede has launched RapID, a new security solution that delivers password and token free access to cloud services from mobile applications.

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Installing apps at the weekend? You're probably using iOS


Companies looking to market to mobile users rely on being able to reach users at the times and places when they're most receptive.

A new report from mobile advertising company AppsFlyer looks at the behavior of app users and how it differs between operating systems and around the world.

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Best OnePlus 2 model gets a price cut

OnePlus 2 Main Front Photo

To appeal to a wider audience, OnePlus has introduced two versions of its second-generation flagship, called OnePlus 2: a base model, which ships with 16 GB of internal storage and 3 GB of RAM, and a high-end variant, which is equipped with 64 GB of internal storage and 4 GB of RAM. However, with only a small difference in price between the two, there has only been one model worth considering -- the latter.

Few consumers have likely opted to purchase the cheaper OnePlus 2, because the company has just decided to drop it from the lineup. OnePlus now only sells the high-end model, but the good news for consumers on a budget and other prospective shoppers alike is that this version is now cheaper.

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India bans Facebook's Free Basics for contravening net neutrality rules


The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has ruled in favor of net neutrality laws, effectively banning Facebook's beleaguered and controversial Free Basics program. In a win for net neutrality proponents, the telecom regulator ruled against "discriminatory tariffs for data services" saying that internet access should be provided on an equal basis.

Mark Zuckerberg's dream of connecting the entire world to the internet has met with controversy ever since it was first announced because of the way it only provides access to a limited number of websites from select Facebook partners.

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US finally gets Sony's Xperia Z5 and Xperia Z5 Compact

Sony Xperia Z5 US

As a household name in the smartphone industry, Sony has a modest presence in US. It sells a small number of handsets in the country, and only a couple of those through major wireless carriers. What's more, its latest flagships arrive late, months after hitting other major markets.

Things are no different with Xperia Z5 and Xperia Z5 Compact. The two flagships, which were announced at CES 2015 and released shortly after, are only now making their way to US shores. There is no word of the more upscale Xperia Z5 Premium, however.

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Amazon bookstores: It’s the drones, stupid


Remember the motto of the Clinton Presidential campaign back in 1992: "It’s the economy, stupid!" That election was about the economy and Clinton won as a result. Well this week let slip its plan to open 300-400 bookstores in U.S. cities, sending Wall Street analysts into a tizzy because bookstores look to them like a lousy business even for the world’s biggest bookseller. But this isn’t about selling books. This Amazon plan -- if it happens at all -- is about creating bases from which to fly delivery drones.

Delivery drones are to me a stupid idea except in certain rare circumstances like flying prescriptions to people living on remote islands. But Amazon is acting like it actually means it. And if it does mean it, then it’ll need a place from which to fly those drones.

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Sidebar Diagnostics is a stylish system monitor for your desktop


Sidebar Diagnostics is a well-designed professional system monitor for Windows Vista and later.

No, we’re not usually interested in this kind of tool, either, but wait -- this is a package you might actually want to use.

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