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Computeractive 598

Computeractive is the UK’s best-selling computer magazine and your friendly guide to PCs, gadgets and the web! It includes regular news updates, project ideas, help and advice on popular reader queries, articles on anti-virus software, features on consumer rights, and a whole lot more to help you get the very best out of your computer. Get PC advice in plain English today – get Computeractive!

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United Kingdom
Dennis Publishing UK
$3.57(Incl. tax)
$53.87(Incl. tax)
26 Issues

in this issue

1 min
from the editor

Have you picked up any online habits during the latest lockdown? Mine is to visit https://windowswap.com and spend a relaxed few minutes hopping between the views from windows around the world. It takes me from my own view in suburban Surrey to Canada, Spain, the US, Russia and beyond. It’s addictive, but it can’t compete with the rise of TV streaming. Nearly a year of various lockdowns has led to a spike in demand for services like Netflix and Amazon Prime, and the sticks that provide access to them – Roku, Fire TV, Chromecast and so on. But streaming sticks have their limitations. You can’t watch much live TV on them, and nor can you record. They also lack ports for your USB sticks. For these reasons, a TV box might suit…

2 min
free data & wi-fi given to families during lockdown

Broadband providers and mobile networks are once again offering free data and Wi-Fi to the public to help them access the internet through the latest lockdown. It follows similar measures in March and April last year, when the UK went into lockdown for the first time. Many of these offers are aimed at helping parents struggling to afford the extra data needed to teach their children at home while schools are closed. BT, for example, is now offering free Wi-Fi vouchers for its five million hotspots directly to schools, having previously made them available through the Government. The vouchers are allocated to schools in proportion to the number of pupils eligible for free school meals. The vouchers normally cost £39 a month, or £30 per month if you sign up for three months.…

1 min
what we think

Companies reacted quickly during the first lockdown to offer free data, so we weren’t surprised they repeated this gesture. What’s more interesting now, as we tentatively imagine a time beyond the pandemic, is whether they’ll be as generous when struggling families and vulnerable people face difficulties in other times. They might come under pressure to provide free data during school holidays, for example, to make sure disadvantaged children don’t fall behind. Or perhaps they’ll be asked to provide discounted deals for pensioners, just as some over-75s receive free TV licences. Let’s wait and see.…

1 min
windows 10x will stop thieves using your laptop

Windows 10X will come with an anti-theft security tool that will prevent laptop thieves from resetting the device in order to make it their own. To reset a Windows 10X laptop, a thief would need your login details to sign in via the original account – which is the one you would have created when you bought the device. Without access, thieves would be permanently locked out of the laptop. Also, the ‘Find my device’ feature would keep running, helping you locate it. This protection will be turned off by default, so you would need to enable it (see screenshot 1). In 2015, Microsoft added a similar tool to Windows Phone, called Reset Protection. It seems that the tool is coming to only Windows 10X, the simplified version of the operating system expected to…

1 min
man who lost bitcoin fortune offers £52m ‘covid fund’ to find hard drive

An IT worker who accidentally threw away a hard drive containing a Bitcoin fortune has offered to give some of the money to his local council if they let him look for it in landfill. James Howells (pictured), 35, bought the Bitcoins for almost nothing in 2009, but forgot about them when he put the drive in a drawer after he spilt drink on it. When he threw the drive away in 2013 he mistakenly thought everything had been wiped from it. He realised soon after that the Bitcoins left on the drive had risen in value to about £4.6m. They are now worth around 50 times the amount, meaning the drive contains an incredible £210m. He told the BBC that if Newport City Council allows him to look for the drive, he…

1 min
in brief

LISTEN TO BBC SOUNDS ON SKY Q BOX The BBC Sounds app has been added to Sky Q boxes, letting you listen to over 80,000 hours of audio content from podcasts, music playlists and live radio broadcasts. To find and open the app, speak “Launch BBC Sounds” into your Sky Q voice remote. You can subscribe to shows and bookmark them to play later, and also pick up where you stopped listening on other devices. For more on Sky Q turn to page 55. NEW USB ADDS WI-FI 6 TO YOUR LAPTOP Router manufacturer D-Link has unveiled what it claims isthe world’s fairst USB adapter that adds Wi-Fi 6 to your laptop. The DWA-X1850(pictured) has WPA3 encryption, and is expected to go on sale between April and June this year. UK prices haven’t…