Latest Technology News

Microsoft releases Windows 10 19H1 Build 18362 and 20H1 Build 18860

Yesterday, Microsoft rolled out Windows 10 19H1 Build 18361 to the Fast ring, and today it follows that up with Build 18362 which fixes a couple of problems.

In addition, the software giant has released Build 18860 for the 20H1 branch of Windows 10, which is planned for release early next year.

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NETGEAR announces Nighthawk RAX200 AX12 AX11000 Tri-Band Wi-Fi 6 Router

Back in November 2018, we shared with you that NETGEAR was planning to sell some premium Wi-Fi 6 routers. This was very exciting, as the addition of this bleeding-edge technology signaled that 802.11ax had truly arrived. Many die-hard NETGEAR fans were waiting for the Nighthawk line in particular to become equipped with this new standard.

Now, NETGEAR announces yet another Wi-Fi 6 router, and this one looks incredible too. Called "Nighthawk RAX200," it retains the same stingray design of the previously announced RAX120, which I find to be quite attractive. It even has one of my favorite security features for a router -- automatic firmware updates. In other words, NETGEAR will keep the RAX200 router up to date without any effort from the owner.

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Opera for Android now includes a free and unlimited VPN

Opera VPN

Opera has added a free VPN service to the Android version of its mobile web browser. Opera 51's newly-added VPN is not only free from charges, it is also free from limitations.

The feature has been added as the Norwegian software developer seeks to improve the security and privacy of web browsing for its users. The company says that it "marks a new standard for privacy and security in mobile browsing".

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Amazon's entry-level Kindle gets a slight price bump -- and gains a front light

All-new Kindle 2019

Amazon has announced its new entry-level Kindle, introducing a couple of changes. While the price remains below $100, there has been a $10 hike, taking the price up to $89.99.

This extra $10 buys you an e-reader with only one notable change -- a new adjustable front light to allow for reading in the dark.

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SoftNAS vulnerability lets attackers bypass authentication

cloud lock

Researchers have uncovered a vulnerability in the SoftNAS Cloud data storage platform that could be used to gain access to the webadmin interface without valid user credentials.

Security technology company Digital Defense found the previously undisclosed vulnerability which arises if customers have not followed SoftNAS deployment best practices and have openly exposed SoftNAS StorageCenter ports directly to the internet.

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Free tool protects businesses against ransomware and other threats

ransomware key

Ransomware and other threats like adware and cryptominers are still a major threat to businesses. But smaller companies may be struggling to find the resources to combat them.

To address this problem Kaspersky Lab is today releasing the next generation of its free Kaspersky Anti-Ransomware Tool for Business.

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New 'Get Windows 10' nag screen arrives in Windows 7

When it was revealed a week ago that Microsoft would once again start nagging Windows 7 users into upgrading to Windows 10, there was a collective sigh of annoyance from devotees of the older OS who have lived through this sort of thing before.

This time though, Microsoft appears to have learned its lesson. Not only does the software giant have a valid reason for the popup notifications -- Windows 7 is nearing the end of its life -- but these alerts are optional, and gentler -- there’s no being tricked into upgrading to Windows 10 this time around (at least not yet).

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Insider threats pose the biggest security risk

insider threat

According to a new study 91 percent of IT and security professionals feel vulnerable to insider threats, and 75 percent believe the biggest risks lie in cloud applications like popular file storage and email solutions including Google Drive, Gmail and Dropbox.

The report from SaaS operations management specialist BetterCloud also shows 62 percent of respondents believe the biggest security threat comes from the well-meaning but negligent end user.

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Apple's updated AirPods offer better performance and hands-free 'Hey Siri'

Apple’s AirPods are quite funny looking things, especially when being worn, but despite this the iPhone maker's wireless headphones have proven to be wildly popular.

Following on from rolling out new iPads and refreshing its iMac range earlier in the week, Apple today announces the second generation of its AirPods with a new Apple-designed H1 chip that promises better performance, faster connections, and up to 50 percent more talk time.

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Europe hits Google with €1.49 billion fine for breaking antitrust law with AdSense restrictions

Google Euro symbol

The European Commission has hit Google with another large fine, this time €1.49 billion ($1.69 billion) for engaging in anti-competitive practices with its advertising tool AdSense.

Google was found guilty of breaking antitrust laws by blocking third party rivals from using AdSense to display advertisements. This is the third fine the Commission has levelled against Google in the last couple of years, but this most recent one is less than a third of the previous record fine for other antitrust violations.

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Apple is going to educate the US and Europe on how to avoid fake news

Apple fake news

Apple has announced that it is to support initiatives in the US and Europe that seek to improve media literacy. The aim is to "encourage critical thinking and empower students to be better informed" by teaching people how to find reliable sources and avoid fake news.

In the US, Apple is throwing its support behind the News Literacy Project (NLP) and Common Sense, while in Europe it is Osservatorio that will reap the benefits of the company's backing. All three are non-profit organizations that provide nonpartisan, independent media literacy programs.

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Copying Microsoft, Google is bringing browser choice to Android to stave off antitrust regulators

Google Chrome icon on mobile

Google is no stranger to investigations into and questions about its practices, and in Europe the company has faced great interest from the European Commission for violating antitrust laws. Now, in a move that echoes that of Microsoft's Browser Choice nearly a decade ago, Google is going to give Android users the option of choosing their default web browser and search engine.

This is not something that will be happening on a global scale, however -- at least not to start with. As Google is merely keen to avoid accusations of being anticompetitive in Europe, it is only European Android users that will be affected.

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Philips launches beautiful E9 series of curved monitors

Philips monitors often provide an excellent value -- great "bang for your buck," as they say. The company's displays typically provide superb visual quality, while also offering good features, and attractive designs.

Today, the company launches a trio new monitors as part of its "E9 series." All three displays are curved with slim bezels, which is great, but two of them (the 27-inch 278E9QJAB and the 32-inch 328E9QJAB) are only 1080p. That resolution is passable for a 22-inch or 24-inch monitor, for example, but 27-inch and higher? Not ideal. Look, for gaming or watching movies, 1080p might be OK with those screen sizes, but text may be too blurry for general computer use. Thankfully, the 32-inch 328E9FJAB offers a much better 2560 x 1440 resolution -- that is the model you want to focus on, y'all.

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Prediction #4 -- Self-driving cars won't happen this year no matter what Elon Musk says

We all know people who seem to not like anything. There are very successful people who sometimes seem to have reached that success entirely through saying "no." I’m not that kind of person. I’m an optimist. I’m even a bit of a risk-taker. But I can’t say that we’re going to see anything beyond more beta tests of self-driving cars in 2019. So my Prediction #4 is that self-driving cars won’t hit the retail market in any fashion this year. We simply aren’t ready and probably won’t be for years to come.

The problem with self-driving cars isn’t the technology. Heck, we’ve had the technology pretty much whipped for the past decade. Throw-in all the more recent data collected by Google and -- especially -- all those Teslas on Autopilot and nearly all the kinks have been worked out of having cars drive themselves. Still, it won’t be allowed to happen because people are going to die, mainly because of idiot drivers.

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Google announces Stadia, its new instant-play game streaming service

Google Stadia Controller

Downloading and installing is just so passé, and Google knows it. It is with this fact in mind -- and an eye firmly on the future -- that the company today announces its new game streaming service, Stadia, at GDC 2019.

The audience at this year's Game Developers Conference were treated to a preview of the cloud-based gaming service that can be accessed from mobiles, desktops, laptops, TVs and more. Google is hoping that the allure of cross-platform, instant-play gaming will attract droves of gamers to the platform.

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