Latest Technology News

Apple's big 2018 MacBook Pro keyboard cover-up

2018 MacBook Pro keyboard membrane

Just a few days ago Apple launched the latest additions to its MacBook Pro range, and the company talked about the fact that the keyboard is quieter. A teardown of the latest devices reveals not only why the keyboards are quieter, but also that the method used seems to serve a secondary purpose -- or maybe that the quietening is itself a secondary purpose.

The keyboards of previous MacBook Pros have suffered issues that led to a free repair program being set up. The latest laptop teardown by iFixit shows that Apple has added a silicone membrane beneath each key, apparently serving the dual task of quietening typing and offering protection and dust and other unwanted contaminants.

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YouTube launches Copyright Match tool to fight content stealing and duplication

YouTube Copyright Match

Eager to encourage content creators to do what they do best -- create content -- YouTube has release a new tool that it hope will help cut down on the problem of video theft and duplication.

Called Copyright Match, the new system is different to the existing Content ID system, but it does use a similar matching technology. YouTube says that it has been testing the tool for almost a year and is now ready to open it up to a larger portion of its community

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Adobe is working on Photoshop for iPad

Adobe logo on wall

Apple has long been keen to push the iPad and iPad Pro as a viable laptop alternative, and with a decent selection of apps to choose from it's something that works for many people. There are, however, a number of apps missing that stop some people making the jump from laptop to iPad -- Photoshop being one of them.

Sure, at the moment there is Photoshop Express for iOS, but this is a massively cutdown product that simply does not meet the needs of professionals. Answering the prayers of many, Adobe is now said to be working on bringing a full version of Photoshop to iPad next year.

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Debian 'Stretch' 9.5 Linux distribution available for download

Debian 9 "Stretch" was released over a year ago -- time really flies! Since then, the wildly popular Linux distribution has been downloaded by countless users.

Today, the 5th "point" release becomes available. In other words, Debian Linux "Stetch" has reached an important milestone -- version 9.5 stable. The operating system is always improving with security updates and bug fixes, and 9.5 is no exception here. In fact, it includes a patch for Spectre V2. Also of significance, the Debian Installer has been given an update.

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Microsoft calls for government regulation of facial recognition because of 'potential for abuse'

Facial recognition of mask

Microsoft president Brad Smith has called on government to regulate facial recognition technology, citing concerns that it is open to abuse. While he acknowledges that technology company have a role to play, he that it is down to elected representatives to put rules in place.

Using a terrible analogy ("All tools can be used for good or ill. Even a broom can be used to sweep the floor or hit someone over the head.") Smith points out that while facial recognition technology is undeniably useful, there is also potential for it to be "misused and abused by private companies and public authorities alike". He wants government to do something about it.

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The iPhone 6 is Apple's most problematic handset -- over a fifth suffer some form of failure

Broken phone screens

When you spend a few hundred dollars on a phone, you expect it to last you a while. But if you splashed out on an iPhone 6 there's a very high change that you've experienced some sort of problem with your handset.

A report shows that the iPhone 6 is by far Apple's least reliable handset, with a staggering 22 percent of them suffering failures. The iPhone 6S isn't far behind, and for Android users, Samsung handsets fare poorly too.

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EdgeDeflector for Windows 10 forces all links to open in the default browser, not Microsoft Edge

It’s no secret that Microsoft wants you to use its Edge browser in Windows 10. It’s tried a lot of ways to persuade users to switch from Chrome, Firefox or other browsers, including advertising Edge in Windows and even recently made a change to a Redstone 5 Insider preview so that links clicked in Windows Mail opened directly in the browser.

Windows 10 users will be aware that Edge is already the default browser for certain links and actions. If you run a web search using the Cortana search box, for example, the results -- provided by Bing -- will open in Edge. But a handy program can redirect these links to whatever browser you have set up as the default.

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Get $50 off Acer Alexa-enabled Windows 10 laptops on Amazon, plus a free Echo Dot

While summer has only just started, it is already time to start thinking about Back-to-School shopping. Yeah, sorry to bum you out, students. But hey, you don't want to return to school or university without a capable laptop, do you? Come on, isn't it fun convincing your parents you need a new computer for "studying and research?"

If you are looking for a good deal on a laptop, whether for school or any other purpose, Acer has a pretty sweet deal going on Amazon. All of its computers with integrated Alexa are $50 off. In addition, you will receive a free Echo Dot. How cool is that? Best of all, this offer is immediate -- you do not have to wait for Prime Day!

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Best Windows 10 apps this week

Two-hundred-and-ninety-one in a series. Welcome to this week's overview of the best apps, games and extensions released for Windows 10 on the Windows Store in the past seven days.

Microsoft released two new builds of the upcoming Windows 10 Redstone 5 that it plans to rollout later this year to the stable channel.

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Apple offers free Beats and big discounts in its Back to School promotion

MacBook Pro and Beats headphones

From now until September 25, Apple is running a Back to School promotion, and there are some great offers for students.

If you qualify, you can bag yourself a free pair of Beats headphones or earphones when you buy a Mac or iPad Pro -- including the Powerbeats3 Wireless in new Beats Pop Collection colors. There are also special deals on accessories and AppleCare.

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A new free version of Microsoft Teams is ready to compete with Slack

Microsoft Teams

Microsoft has launched a free version of Teams, the company's collaborative chat tool. Teams has pitted itself against the likes of Slack since it first appeared, but the arrival of a free edition makes it a viable alternative.

As this is a free product, it should come as no surprise that there are limitations. However, the free edition of Microsoft Team can still be used by up to 300 people -- the same as the Essentials and Premium versions -- which should be enough to cater for most small to medium sized businesses.

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YouTube TV offers heartfelt apology for World Cup outage, promises free week of service

If you haven't heard, YouTube TV experienced an ill-timed outage yesterday. Well, I suppose there is never a good time for a service disruption, but still, this was during a rather important sporting event. What game was it? The big World Cup match between England and Croatia. I'm not a fan of soccer, but I can understand how having your TV service disrupted during such a major game could be annoying. If it was during the World Series or Super Bowl, I'd be rather upset.

YouTube TV apologized profusely on Twitter, and ultimately, the service was restored long before the match was over. In other words, subscribers were able to experience England's crushing defeat. If you weren't satisfied with the apology, YouTube TV is offering something that should make up for the inconvenience -- a free week of service.

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Malwarebytes arrives on iOS to keep your iPhone safe from snoopers and scammers

Malwarebytes already offers a decent security app for Android, but the company has never had a version for iOS -- until now.

While iPhone and iPad users are less at risk from malware than their Android counterparts, thanks to Apple’s walled-garden, they aren’t necessarily completely safe -- the threat of spam calls, scam websites, fraudulent texts and bad ads remains.

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Smartphone apps may be secretly screenshotting you

With every new privacy scandal that erupts across the digital landscape, we smartphone users and digital nomads must ask ourselves the same question: Have we reached diminishing returns on the usefulness of modern technology? It seems sometimes like every new convenience arrives with a litany of security concerns attached.

The latest news to strike a blow to our expectations of digital privacy is that smartphone apps appear to have been taking screenshots of users' devices and records of their keystrokes without their knowledge.

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Apple releases elegant and pricey Leather Sleeve for MacBook Pro

Apple is making huge news today with the refresh of its wildly popular MacBook Pro laptops. The portable computers are more powerful than ever and feature a quieter keyboard. In addition, the company will be selling an optional eGPU made by Blackmagic that will transform the notebooks into graphical powerhouses.

MacBook Pro computers are very well-made, but they are quite expensive too. Even if you buy the Apple Care protection plan, it is a wise idea to invest in a case or bag for it too. Today, the iPhone-maker releases new leather sleeves that should protect both the 13 and 15-inch MacBook Pro laptops from scratches and dents. As you can imagine, since it is an official Apple product, it is rather pricey.

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