Latest Technology News

Got Bluetooth problems in Windows 10? KB4505903 update could be to blame

We are frequently advised to ensure that all of the latest Windows updates are installed in the name of security, as well as to ensure that we have access to all of the latest features. But sometimes things go wrong, as the KB4505903 update for Windows 10 illustrates.

This cumulative update was released a little while back -- July 26, to be precise -- but over the intervening weeks, problems have emerged with Bluetooth. You may find that you're not able to connect your Bluetooth speaker, or that audio quality is terrible. Microsoft has a workaround.

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ADATA unveils UFU33B USB Flash Drive and IESU317 external SSD

Despite the surge in cloud storage adoption nowadays, sometimes local storage is still needed -- particularly external drives. After all, fewer consumers are buying desktops these days, instead relying on laptops, tablets, and convertibles. These computer types typically don't allow the addition of a second internal storage drive -- some don't even allow an upgrade of the sole drive. Thankfully, good ol' USB is still here to expand storage.

Today, ADATA unveils two new drives that utilize the tried-and-true USB-A connection. One is a flash drive, while the other is an external solid state drive. Neither product is particularly remarkable, but that is OK -- these are designed for functionality only. In other words, they aren't supposed to revolutionize anything or win a beauty pageant. With that said, they both are rather pretty.

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Five vendors account for nearly a quarter of all vulnerabilities

World map with code

Just five major vendors account for 24.1 percent of disclosed vulnerabilities in 2019 so far, according to a new report from Risk Based Security.

The report also reveals that 54 percent of 2019 vulnerabilities are web-related, 34 percent have public exploits, 53 percent can be exploited remotely and that 34 percent of 2019 vulnerabilities don't yet have a documented solution.

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Google seeks to make the web more private for Chromium users with Privacy Sandbox

Google HQ logo

Google is not a company synonymous with privacy, but the company increasingly recognizes the importance people place on it. With this in mind, it has launched a new initiative called Privacy Sandbox which aims to increase online privacy.

The bold goal is to "develop a set of open standards to fundamentally enhance privacy on the web", and one of the first proposals seeks to limit online track of users. It will limit fingerprinting, change the way targeted advertising works, and more.

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Best Windows 10 apps this week

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

Microsoft released two new builds of the upcoming Windows 10 20H1 version of the operating system.

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Google reveals Android Q will be called Android 10 as it undergoes an evolutionary rebrand

New Android logo

Google has famously named each version of Android after a dessert or confectionery. With Android Q this changes. As well as introducing a new naming scheme, Google is also updating the branding for Android.

Android Q is to be called Android 10 -- bringing Google's mobile operating system in line with Microsoft's Windows 10, and Apple's iPhone X. The new name is accompanied by a new logo and a new color scheme.

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Interest in VMWare Cloud use on AWS grows

Cloud management

A new survey of over 1,100 IT professionals carried out by managed service provider Faction reveals growing usage of and interest in VMware Cloud on AWS.

According to the study 64 percent of respondents say they have workloads in Azure, 57 percent AWS, 25 percent VMware Cloud on AWS, and 26 percent Google. But 29 percent of respondents plan to increase workloads on VMware Cloud on AWS in the next 12 months, while 15 percent plan to start running workloads and 14 percent plan to increase the number of workloads.

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StarTech.com launches physical laptop locks for college dorms, businesses, and more

If you have a son or daughter heading to college this September, I bet you bought them a nice new laptop for their dorm room, right? Of course you did. I mean, a computer is an essential learning tool these days. While laptops aren't as expensive as they used to be, they are still an investment. The problem? Dorm rooms are often burglarized. If your child leaves their computer sitting on a desk, there is a good chance it could disappear. The same goes for businesses -- think about how easy it is for someone to grab a laptop and walk out the door -- scary stuff.

Thankfully, with some laptops and other devices, you can physically lock them up. If your device has a Kensington lock slot, it is very easy to secure it to a desk, wall, or other object. Today, StarTech.com launches a new line of these locks. There are three from which to choose -- a keyed cable lock, a combination lock, and a coiled combination lock. In addition, there are two heavy-duty anchors which can be secured to, say, a desk, so you can run the lock cable through it.

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Microsoft and others join the Linux Foundation's Confidential Computing Consortium

Microsoft building logo

Microsoft, Google, Red Hat, IBM and Intel are among those to join the newly formed Confidential Computing Consortium (CCC). The new organization will be hosted at the Linux Foundation, having been established to help define and accelerate the adoption of confidential computing.

The company explains that, "confidential computing technologies offer the opportunity for organizations to collaborate on their data sets without giving access to that data, to gain shared insights and to innovate for the common good". Microsoft will be contributing the Open Enclave SDK that allows developers to build Trusted Execution Environment (TEE) applications using a single enclaving abstraction.

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Microsoft contractors have been listening to audio captured via Xbox consoles

Hand holding an Xbox One controller

There have been lots of exposés over the last few weeks about the fact that numerous companies -- including Apple, Microsoft, Facebook, Amazon and Google -- have been listening to recordings of interactions between customers and digital assistants. The latest revelation is that Microsoft contractors have been listening to Xbox users.

A new report says that contractors working for Microsoft listened to audio clips recorded when Xbox users interacted with Kinect and Cortana on their consoles.

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Google pulls out its death hammer once again -- YouTube messaging is the next victim

Google has announced that it is killing off yet another of its messaging tools. This time rather than terminating a standalone messaging tool, it is the direct messaging feature of YouTube that is for the chop.

The cut-off date is less than a month away, but Google warns that some messaging elements -- including the sharing of videos through messages -- may vanish before the ultimate end date of September 18.

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Dell XPS 13 (7390) Developer Edition laptop comes with Ubuntu Linux, Wi-Fi 6, and 10th Gen Intel Core CPU

There are so many great Linux distributions these days, such as Netrunner, Deepin, and Zorin OS to name just a few. With that said, Ubuntu remains a great option for many. Since Canonical switched from Unity to GNOME, Ubuntu has been better than ever.

If you want a computer pre-loaded with Ubuntu, I highly recommend you check out System76's new Adder WS -- it looks to be a beast. If you want a laptop that it thinner and lighter, however, Dell's XPS 13 Developer Edition notebooks are definitely worth your attention. They have historically been very well-received by consumers, and no, they aren't just for developers. Today, Dell unveils the latest XPS 13 Developer Edition, and it is chock full of modern hardware.

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Microsoft releases Windows 10 20H1 Build 18965 with a new app restart setting

Last Friday, Microsoft rolled out an action-packed new build for Windows 10 Insiders on the Fast ring that included updates to Task Manager, Virtual Desktops, Optional Features in Settings, Notepad, account profiles, and Windows Search.

Today, the software giant brings out Build 18965 with one major new change.

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Garmin smartwatches get Amazon Music

I recently canceled Amazon Prime, as I found the subscription to be deficient -- especially at $129 per year. What was wrong with Prime? Many things, such as the video library being atrocious and the included Amazon Music service having a very small library (two million songs). Amazon makes you pony up even more money to have a larger music library (50 million songs). Not to mention, the Amazon Music interface is nothing to write home about -- overall, die hard music fans should look elsewhere, such as Apple Music or Spotify.

But OK, let's say you are a casual music listener that takes advantage of either Amazon Music or the pricier Amazon Music Unlimited. If that is you, I have good news -- your music service is now available on some Garmin smartwatches!

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Beta bug hunters can bag up to $30k in the Microsoft Edge Insider Bounty program

Microsoft Edge Beta logo

With a new beta of the Chromium-based version of Edge now available, Microsoft has unveiled details of a new bug bounty program for the browser.

Through the Microsoft Edge Insider Bounty it is possible to earn a maximum payout of $30,000 for discovering vulnerabilities in the Dev and Beta builds of Edge. Microsoft says that it intends to complement the Chrome Vulnerability Reward Program, meaning that any report that affects the latest version of Microsoft Edge but not Chrome will be eligible.

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