Tech & Gaming

Computeractive 530

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
Read More
26 Issues

in this issue

1 min.
from the editor

Anything software can do, apps can do better. That’s certainly true of the exceptional apps Jane Hoskyn recommends in this issue’s Cover Feature. She’s chosen those that maximise the advantages phones and tablets have over computers – benefits like touchscreens and portability. She’s avoided the many gimmicky apps that seem like a good idea when you install them, but never actually get used. Our feature is a sign of how apps have matured into a proper category of their own. In the early days of phones and tablets, too many app developers tried to copy what PC software already did. But now, they stick to what works on a small screen, and don’t try to usurp PC programs. Both are essential to modern life. I’m typing this on the same Windows PC…

2 min.
microsoft removes technical help from windows forums

Microsoft has announced it will soon stop answering your questions in some of its Community forums, including those covering Windows 7 and 8.1, and the 2010 and 2013 editions of Office. The company will be removing the freelance ‘agents’ it pays to respond to problems on these forums. In its announcement (www.snipca.com/28117), Microsoft said 11 forums in total will lose “technical support”, including those for Internet Explorer 10, Microsoft Security Essentials and Surface Pro. Users will still be able to post on the forums, and answer others people’s questions, as well as read previous posts. The company added that the forums “will still be moderated by Microsoft agents to ensure participants can engage in a safe and positive environment”. The change will be “effective July 2018”. A forum will continue for Windows 10,…

1 min.
govt ‘won’t ban phones in schools’

There are no plans to copy France by banning phones in schools, Digital Secretary Matt Hancock has said. He told The Guardian that legislation isn’t needed in this area. Instead, society has to “mature” to make the most of this “amazing and brilliant” technology. From September, French pupils will be forbidden from using phones anywhere on school premises. A law passed in 2010 previously banned them in the classroom only. However, Hancock repeated his plans to force social-media companies to take more responsibility over the content that appears on their sites. He said there should be “political accountability over an area of life where there is a huge amount of power in the hands of a small amount of people”. He added the Government also has a responsibility to make it easier for parents…

1 min.
intel’s ‘low power’ laptop screens double battery life

Intel has unveiled new technology for screens that it claims can make laptop batteries last twice as long. The processor company said its Low Power Display Technology, built into a one-watt LCD panel, could add up to eight hours of battery life, making some laptops run for 28 hours in total. Screens are the biggest power drain on a laptop. It made the claim at the Computex show in Taiwan (pictured), where it showed a Dell XPS 13 laptop built with the new system lasting for 25 hours while playing a video. Currently, the Dell XPS 13 lasts around 10 hours, as does our recommended ‘Buy It’ laptop – the Asus ZenBook UX410UA (see page 30). Intel has teamed up with Sharp and Innolux to make the panel. It will be offered to…

1 min.
group facetime chats coming to ipad

You’ll soon be able to have live video chats on your iPhone and iPad with up to 32 people at the same time, Apple has said. The Group FaceTime feature will arrive in the 12th version of its mobile operating system iOS, due for release in September. Currently you can chat with only one person. Apple said participants can be added to a chat at any time. In a video demonstration (www.snipca.com/28014, pictured) it showed how people’s faces appear in tiles on screen. These get bigger when someone speaks to “reflect their prominence in the conversation”, or you can select which face to enlarge. Other people taking part in the call appear in a ‘roster’ at the bottom. Group FaceTime will be built into the Messages app on the iPhone and iPad, letting…

2 min.
in brief

MORE OLDER PEOPLE USING THE WEB The proportion of over-75s using the internet has more than doubled this decade, from 20 per cent in 2011 to 44 per cent in 2018. The figures, from the Office of National Statistics’ latest ‘Internet users’ report (www.snipca.com/27988), also show a marked rise in 65 to 74-year-olds during the same period, from 52 to 80 per cent. Both age groups are dwarfed by the proportion of 16 to 34-year-olds using the web, which stands at 99 per cent. SUPERDRUG LAUNCHES PHONE SERVICE Superdrug has launched a pay-as-you-go SIM-only mobile service for £10 a month, giving you unlimited calls, texts and 4GB of data. Extra data costs £2 for 1GB, £3 for 2GB and £5 for 4GB. Any data left unused is rolled over to the next month.…