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Nokia Lumia 735: Budget smartphone for the selfie generation [Review]

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Nokia is coming to the end of the road as a name in phone making, and the brand will likely get subsumed into owner Microsoft in the not too distant future. With Nokia phones already well and truly part of the Windows Phone stable, you won't be surprised to learn that the Lumia 735 runs Windows Phone 8.1. Nor will its general looks be any surprise -- it is a straightforward Nokia monolith.

But there are some pleasant surprises under the hood that lift this budget handset above the ordinary. A 5 megapixel wide angle front camera for taking high quality selfies is Nokia's own selected highlight, but Cortana, Microsoft's much talked about digital assistant, is also here, making a belated arrival in the UK to join Apple's Siri.

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Samsung teases Android 5.0 Lollipop for Galaxy Note 4, but don't get your hopes up

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With Android 5.0 Lollipop yet to be released, some manufacturers have already revealed their upgrade plans for the latest version of the mobile operating system, effectively setting a high bar for the rest of the pack. You can thank HTC, Motorola and Sony for doing so last week. In fact, HTC and Motorola consistently rank among the first in this regard, and when it comes to rolling out those software updates to their customers' devices as well.

Not to be outdone by its far-distant competition, top maker Samsung wants us to know that it too has some upgrade plans for Android 5.0 Lollipop. But, instead of actually showing them, it has posted a rather lame teaser on Twitter, regarding Galaxy Note 4. Pundits have fallen for it, writing that the much-awaited software update is fast-approaching. Really?

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EHEAR E2: A wearable Bluetooth video camera that won't break the bank [Review]

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You never know when you’ll see or hear something interesting when out and about. If you want to record what's going on around you, the easiest solution is to whip out your smartphone, but that’s not always practical -- if you’re driving for example, or performing any task that requires both hands (like mountain biking down a treacherous slope).

The EHEAR E2 is a small finger-sized recording device that hooks over your ear, and lets you record what you see. You can fire up the camera with a single tap, and then view your recordings on a phone or tablet later on.

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Using Google Analytics to gauge return on investment

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Google Analytics has become something of an industry standard for gathering web metrics. But a new report from form building company Formstack says that businesses may be concentrating on measuring the wrong things.

It suggests that users tend to focus on vanity metrics, like page views and bounce rate, but stop short of real data tracking. What they should be focusing on are the actionable GA metrics that will impact conversion rate and ultimately revenue.

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Bitdefender unveils portable Adware Removal Tool

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Bitdefender has announced the availability of Bitdefender Adware Removal Tool for PC, the first public beta of its portable program to detect and remove unwanted software.

The Removal Tool arrives as a single 41.8MB executable file. There are no supporting files, and it doesn’t download anything else: just run it and go.

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Staples is the latest US store to suffer a credit card data breach

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The office supply store Staples has announced that it is investigating a possible breach of payment card data, making it the latest US store to be targeted.

The retailer has notified the relevant authorities, but has not disclosed details of the data breach publicly.

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Making direct interconnection of networks a Snap

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As businesses increasingly turn to the cloud to store their data the weak link in the chain remains the use of the public internet to transfer information.

To overcome these concerns enterprises are looking for secure and scalable ways to directly connect data centers across the globe. Now IIX (International Internet Exchange) has acquired a platform that fully automates the buying and provisioning of network connections in under five minutes, replacing a manual process that can take as long as 30 days.

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Proximity Unlock hitting Android L and ChromeOS Preview builds

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Google has long been unhappy with traditional passwords. And rightly so, they are a headache. If they are easy to remember, they can become easy to guess. There are problems with reuse, attackers are getting them through compromised third party applications, and there are more problems than I care to list. It is hard enough to follow good practice as an informed and security conscious individual -- imagine the struggle for the "non-techy".

Google has long been looking into proximity based credentials as alternatives, and placing them in objects like rings. Last Google I/O, the company released an upcoming feature in Chrome OS that uses your authorized, unlocked phone to unlock your computer simply by having them near to each other (unlocking your phone indicates you are near your computer).

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Xiaomi price drop suggests new flagship devices are on their way

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Chinese smartphone manufacturer Xiaomi looks set to implement a price reduction drive across a number of its devices, increasing speculation that new flagship models will be released in the not-too-distant future.

According to a report by GizChina, citing Xiaomi's e-commerce webpage Tmall, several of the firm's products, including its Mi 4 smartphone and Mi Pad tablet have received new price tags.

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Avast 2015 gains Home Network Security check, HTTPS scanning, hardware-based virtualization

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Avast Software has announced the release of its 2015 product lineup, including Avast Free and Pro Antivirus 2015Avast Internet Security 2015, and Avast Premier 2015.

All editions now include a Home Network Security option which scans your local network for vulnerabilities: Wi-Fi status, router settings, passwords still set to common defaults, more.

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Ginni comes to her senses, but too late for IBM?

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This week, of all weeks, with IBM seemingly melting-down, you’d think I’d be writing about it and I have been, just not here. You can read two columns on IBM I published over at forbes.com, here and here. They are first day and second day analyses of IBM’s earnings announcement and sale of its chip division to GlobalFoundries. I could publish them here three days from now but by then nobody will care so instead I’ll just give you the links.

One thing I can do here is consider the way IBM CEO Ginni Rometty is spinning this story. She was all over the news on Monday repudiating the 2015 earnings target set by her predecessor Sam Palmisano and more or less claiming to be a victim -- along with the rest of IBM -- of Sam’s bad management. Well she isn’t a victim. Ginni was an active participant in developing the Death March 2015 strategy. And as CEO -- now CEO and chairman -- it’s laughable to contend, as Ginni apparently does, that she has been somehow bound by Sam’s bad plan.

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Vatican Library’s digital archives now available online

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The Vatican Apostolic Library has announced that more than 4,000 ancient manuscripts will now be available online as part of a digital archive.

Global IT service provider NTT DATA has developed the service, which displays high definition digital reproductions of the texts at the library's website.

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Here's what's new in Windows 10 Technical Preview build 9860

Windows 10 Technical Preview build 9860

Development of Windows has been criticized in the past for being slow. With the Technical Preview of Windows 10, it's just not possible to level the same complaint at Microsoft. It's only a couple of weeks since we got our grubby little hands on the embryonic build 9841 and tens of thousands of users have provided feedback. Now it's upgrade time. Build 9860 has been pushed out -- through Windows Update, no less... none of this messy ISO malarkey this time around -- so it's time to take a look at the work Microsoft has done.

When build 9841 was released, there was disappointment from many quarters -- including here -- at just how little had changed since Windows 8.1. Jumping up 19 build numbers might not seem like much, but there are now a couple of features that were talked about at the launch of the Technical Preview that were not available in the first release -- but still no Cortana.

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Why the iPhone 6's Apple Pay is all about owning your identity

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Apple's 'Apple Pay' function, tying Touch ID with mobile payments, was perhaps the most important announcement to come from the 9/9 event, and one that signifies the company's first legitimate claim to consumer identity.

This pits Apple not just against payment providers such as PayPal, but against companies like Facebook, Google and Amazon as an identity provider. Combining Apple Pay with Passbook effectively digitises a user's entire wallet, and with that their identity as a consumer. It's essentially putting your 'identity' into one 'pocketable' device.

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RapidWeaver 6.0 adds five new themes, debuts Addons Manager, Markdown tool

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UK developer Realmac Software has unveiled RapidWeaver 6.0, a major new version of its acclaimed web design tool for Macs.

Version 6, which now requires OS X 10.9 (Mavericks) or later to run, throws in a new Addons Manager, bundles five new themes and promises vastly improved performance thanks to full 64-bit support and a revamped publishing engine.

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