Computeractive 615

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!

United Kingdom
Dennis Publishing UK
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26 Issues

in this issue

1 min
from the editor

Here’s my dilemma: can I write about advances in TV technology without sounding like a cliched middle-aged bloke reminiscing about the ‘good old days’ when there were only three (and then four) channels to watch? My kids have heard it all before. When they moan about Netflix stuttering, I bore them with tales of waiting hours on a drizzly Sunday just for Bullseye to start. ‘Hacking’ your TV back then meant hitting the top or twisting the aerial. Now it’s entering Developer Mode and ‘sideloading’ apps. We explain how to do this (sideloading, not twisting aerials) in our Cover Feature, as well as mirroring your phone’s screen, streaming files from your PC, listening via wireless headphones, and more. It’s all a long way from gazing glumly at Ceefax pages between programmes - and…

2 min
windows 11 rejects old pcs days before launch

Microsoft is beginning to kick users out of the Windows 11 Insider Programme if their computers aren’t considered powerful enough to run the new operating system. It comes as the company puts the finishing touches to Windows 11 ahead of its release on 5 October. Windows Insiders have reported seeing the message “Your PC does not meet the minimum hardware requirements for Windows 11” (see screenshot) and therefore “is not eligible to join the Windows Insider Program on Windows 11”. It goes on to say that users should re-install Windows 10 instead and continue with the Insider Programme for that system. The warning will raise concerns that many computers won’t have sufficiently advanced hardware to run Windows 11. Microsoft previously said that Insiders wouldn’t be pushed back to Windows 10 until Windows 11…

1 min
govt wants netflix to follow same rules as bbc and itv

New rules to protect TV-streaming viewers from misleading health advice and “pseudoscience documentaries on climate change” could be introduced by the Government. Currently, traditional broadcasters such as the BBC, ITV and Sky have to follow Ofcom’s Broadcasting Code, which sets out standards for content in areas including offensive material, accuracy, fairness and privacy. Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden wants similar rules to apply to the likes of Netflix, Amazon Prime and Disney+ to ensure a “level playing field between traditional broadcasters and online streaming services”. He wrote on GOV.UK: “Right now, viewers in the UK know that if they switch on their TV, there will be a high standard of rules in place to protect audiences, including the 9pm watershed and certain content standards. The same is not currently true of video-on-demand (VoD) services…

1 min
lossless audio coming to bluetooth headphones

You’ll soon be able to listen to lossless audio through wireless headphones, after semiconductor company Qualcomm announced it was making the technology available for Bluetooth. Lossless audio files are compressed (made smaller) without affecting the sound. This contrasts with ‘lossy’ audio, which discards information during the compression process, reducing sound quality. Bluetooth exacerbates this by applying its own lossy compression. That’s why you typically need wired speakers or headphones to listen to lossless audio. Qualcomm said that until now Bluetooth has unavoidably degraded the audio signal. However, Qualcomm’s aptX Lossless technology, which is part of its Snapdragon Sound program, can transmit “mathematically bit-for-bit exact” audio at CD quality. Lossless audio’s appeal is growing, aided by leading audio-streaming services that have started offering it. It’s now available through Deezer, Tidal, Amazon Music HD and Apple…

1 min
in brief

ADD BRITBOX TO ROKU STREAMING DEVICES You can now add the BritBox TV-streaming service to Roku players and TVs. Launched in the UK in 2019, BritBox offers classic shows from the BBC and ITV archives, plus new programmes including the new series of Spitting Image. Read the Roku blog for instructions on how to add the service: SAMSUNG TO AXE CLOUD BACKUP SERVICE Samsung is reminding users that its online Cloud backup service will soon stop storing photos and videos. Users in ‘Group 1’ have until 30 September to download their content; Group 2 has until 30 November. Samsung will delete any remaining photos and videos on those dates, though they will remain on your phone if you have stored them there. The service will continue to back up your contacts, calendar…

1 min
in brief

VIRGIN’S BROADBAND HITS 10M HOMES Virgin Media O2 has extended its hyper-fast broadband network to a further 1.7 million premises, bringing the total to 10 million. It claims to deliver an average download speed of 1,130Mbps, and 52Mbps uploading. New areas include Blackpool, Cambridge, Leicester, Nottingham, Oxford and Swindon (for details visit FREE WEB INSTALLS FOR PEOPLE ON BENEFITS Openreach will now install broadband for free to households on universal credit that have no other earnings. The company would normally charge providers such as Sky or TalkTalk for connecting households, who then pass the fee on to the customer. Openreach estimates about one million people could save up to £92, assuming providers pass on the saving. Read more at THE WORLD’S GONE MAD! Staring at smartphones for hours non-stop is weakening our sense…