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Computeractive 599

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

At one time, about four years ago, it felt like I was the only Surrey-to-London commuter not playing Candy Crush on their phone. I don’t know what the few remaining commuters play now, but I still haven’t crushed any candy – not on my phone, tablet, or computer. In fact, it was one of the first things I removed from the Windows Start menu once I realised it required just a few clicks. Deleting such adverts (for that’s what they are) is one of the tips Robert Irvine explains in our Cover Feature, along with expelling outdated Windows programs, wiping unnecessary updates and uninstalling temporary files that seem to have become permanent. More controversially, he also suggests five Windows tools that you should replace. I agree with him on Groove Music and…

1 min
2021’s first feature update not coming until june

A leak from Microsoft has suggested that the first Windows 10 Feature update of 2021 (version 21H1) won’t be ready until June, a month or two later than has been the case in previous years. In both 2019 (version 1903) and 2020 (version 2004), the first Feature update was released in May. Before that, they were released in April. But in an online message posted to software developers, a Microsoft employee referred to June 2021 as the release date for 21H1. The message was later edited to remove the date, but not before screenshots of it had circulated on social media. It’s thought that version 21H1 will be a minor update, containing mostly fixes and improvements to existing tools. Recent versions for Windows Insiders show small changes including DNS options moving from the…

1 min
what we think

We can’t imagine many people minding that the next Feature update will arrive a little later than expected. On the contrary, most users will be thankful that they’ll be able to enjoy their current version of Windows for a few more weeks before they have to press ‘Update now’ and hope for the best. But it does suggest that the autumn’s update could be a biggie (technical term), with some of the biggest changes to Windows 10 since it launched in 2015 – perhaps significant enough to feel like a brand new operating system.…

1 min
see upcoming edge tools in microsoft’s new roadmap

Microsoft has revealed a new site listing tools that are to be added to its Edge browser. Called the Feature Roadmap (www.snipca.com/37261, pictured), it lists what features are coming and the ‘Target Date’ when they’re due to arrive in Edge. It also gives the ‘Status’ of each feature, stating whether it’s ‘Launched’ (available to all), ‘Rolling Out’ (the Beta version) or ‘In Development’ (test versions before Beta, such as Edge Canary). Clicking a feature tells you more about it. For example, clicking the ‘Additional page-scaling options’ heading reveals that version 89 of Edge, due in March, will add more options (‘Fit to page’ and ‘Actual size’) when you print web pages. You can search for features on the left-hand side, narrowing your results by clicking one of the categories and selecting your filter.…

1 min
networks agree to build and share over 200 4g masts

O2, Three and Vodafone have agreed to build and share 222 phone masts to boost 4G coverage across rural parts of the UK. Most of the masts (124) will be built in Scotland, with 54 in England, 33 in Wales and 11 in Northern Ireland. The locations of the masts aren’t being revealed until planning permission has been granted. Construction will begin this year, and should be completed by 2024. The announcement is the first stage of the Government’s Shared Rural Network (SRN) scheme to help extend 4G signals to 95 per cent of the country by 2026. It’s being funded by £500m of public money from the Government and a further £500m from the networks, which will share existing masts as well as build new ones. According to Ofcom, around nine per…

1 min
1 in 6 households struggle to afford broadband during lockdown

One in six households have found it difficult to afford broadband during the lockdowns, Citizens Advice has said. The charity warned that many of society’s poorest people are being “locked out” of access to key services online, such as applying for jobs and benefits and ordering medicine. It wants the Government and Ofcom to make it compulsory for all providers to offer cheaper plans to people struggling financially. Currently, only three of the 13 largest broadband providers – BT, Virgin Media and KCOM – offer special discounts for customers on low-income benefits, it said. Alistair Cromwell, Acting Chief Executive of Citizens Advice, said: “The pandemic has cemented the fact that broadband is an essential utility. It is not a luxury for those who can afford it”. He added: “While the government has provided free laptops…