Tags PC

Seven Stories Of Injuries And Other VR Hazards

HTC and Valve’s Vive VR headset lets you physically move around in virtual reality. You can walk, run, jump, flail your arms, and all that good stuff. You can also be a shambling disaster zone.


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February 3rd


Comparison breaks down all the missing features in Office for Mac & iPad vs Windows


This comparison of the differences between Microsoft Office on Mac, Windows, and iOS devices was put together by Kurt Schmucker who (disclaimer) works for Parallels — that company that makes slick virtual machine apps for running Windows and other operating systems on Mac — but he also happens to know a thing or two about the subject after his previous role as Senior Mac Evangelist at Microsoft on the Office team. So what exactly is missing on Mac and iOS devices compared to Windows when it comes to the Office suite?

In the charts below, Schmucker breaks down feature-by-feature exactly what you get (and don’t get) in each of the different versions of the productivity suite including Office 2016 and 2013 for Windows, Office 2016 and 2011 for Mac, and Office for iPad.

The full charts (below) show suite-wide differences between the versions such as missing apps, lack of support for Visual Basic and ActiveX, right-to-left language support, accessibility features, AppleScript and much more. Other charts in the study show feature variations for Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook, with the majority of the features listed unavailable for iPad users and a mixed bag for the other versions. 


And Schmucker points out two things regarding the iPad specifically. One positive is support for right-to-left languages, which he notes is something that Mac users have bene asking for but have yet to receive, while a negative for the iPad is lack of multiple selection support in PowerPoint, something Schmucker notes is a pretty basic but crucial function for the app.

In the end, he concludes that a mix of the various Office suites is the best approach but admits that his main, go-to version is MacOffice 2011 (apart from using the latest version of Outlook due to enhanced performance):

“I worked for the MacOffice team at Microsoft for several years, and at that time I also worked closely with colleagues on the WinOffice teams. Because of this background, I am often able to pick just the right Office app that will make a given task the easiest to do. One task might be particularly well suited to MacWord 2011 because Publishing Layout View— a feature only in that one Word version— will make this task easy. Another task might be suited to WinPPT because of the Animation Painter, which is not in any MacPPT version. Yet another task might be best suited to WInPPT 2013 because it needs an Office extension not available in other Office suites.”

And this is what Schmucker’s setup looks like with various versions of Office installed on Mac and using virtual machines:


Click the charts below to view them in full size:

Microsoft-Office-Comparison-Parallels-03 Microsoft-Office-Comparison-Parallels-04 Microsoft-Office-Comparison-Parallels-05 Microsoft-Office-Comparison-Parallels-06

If accessing Windows-only or version specific features on your Mac is the goal, Schmucker notes that with Parallels you can easily run different versions of Windows and Office on one Mac using Parallels Desktop for Mac and a subscription to Office 365 Home (which will give you five installs of the Office suites of your choice). That’s how he accomplishes the setup above using various virtual machines. 

Filed under: Apps, iOS, iOS Devices, Mac, Tech Industry Tagged: iOS, iPad, Mac, Microsoft, Office, Parallels, PC, Productivity, Windows

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Jordan Kahn

January 21st




Remix OS for PC Puts Android on Virtually Any Old Computer for Free

Got an ageing computer taking up space in a closet? Well, from mid-January you’ll be able to give it a new lease of life with Remix OS for PC, which will let you run a version of Android right there on a computer, gratis.


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Jamie Condliffe

January 8th


The Reason People Are Freaking Out About Steam ‘Leaks’ Right Now

It’s the talk of the Internet: a big Steam “leak” just dropped, and people are saying it “confirms” things like PC ports of Everybody’s Gone To The Rapture and Journey. Oh, and some little game called Half-Life 3. There is, however, reason to be skeptical.


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December 8th


Google’s Chromebit Turns a TV Into a Chrome PC and Is Selling for $85

Earlier this year, Google announced the Chomebit: a Chrome OS-based computer on an HDMI stick that could turn any screen into a computer. Now, it’s officially going on sale—and it will only cost you $85.


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Jamie Condliffe

November 17th


Tim Cook: ‘Why would you buy a PC anymore?’

iPad Pro PC Mac

Apple CEO Tim Cook said during an interview this week that many people will soon come to realize they only need an iPad and a phone, likely an iPhone. In other words, he doesn't think they'll ever need to use a PC ever again.

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Chris Smith

November 10th


Black Ops 3 Launched A Bit Broken On PC

Call of Duty campaigns are a guilty pleasure of mine, so I was excited last week to fire up Black Ops 3 on PC . Ten minutes later, I’d shut it down, and a sad sense of déjà vu was washing over me.


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November 8th


This Is Pure Custom-Build Computer Pornography

There is long and storied debate about whether or not gadgets are sexy, but whichever side of the argument you come down on, it’s clear that this is real NSFW computer porn.


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Chris Mills

November 5th


IBM cuts down IT support staff w/ Mac deployment, says 5% of Mac users call help desk vs 40% for PCs

Apple CEO Tim Cook with IBM CEO Ginni Rometty

Apple CEO Tim Cook with IBM CEO Ginni Rometty

Deploying Macs to employees has helped IBM significantly reduce its IT staff and cut down on time and costs, the company’s VP of Workplace-as-a-Service Fletcher Previn explained at a recent talk during the JAMF Nation User Conference (JNUC). Previn offered some insight into how offering Macs has improved efficiency for the company’s internal IT staff since IBM for the first time started offering its employees Macs as an official alternative to PCs back in May.

Previn noted that “Every Mac that we buy is making and saving IBM money,” and that “A Mac still has value three or four years down the road.” An example of the added value of using Macs versus PCs is the amount of support required. IBM has just 24 help desk staff that are supporting around 130,000 Mac and iOS devices deployed throughout the company. That’s just one support member for 5,375 employees, but Previn boasts that’s because only approximately 5% of Mac users request support compared to around 40% of its PC using employees.

Previn said that Gartner believes the optimal number of IT to employees should be 1:70. Previn noted that the average is 1:242. And IBM is currently hovering around 1:5,400. Wow!

IBM originally planned to deploy around 50,000 new Macs to the company by the end of the year when it first announced the initiative back in May. At the JAMF conference it said it’s currently deploying around 1,900 Macs per week with 130,000 Apple devices already in use at the company.

A couple months back Apple and IBM announced an expanded partnership that will see it distribute and support enterprise Macs for other companies in addition to its work together to deploy and support iOS devices and software.

IBM is using JAMF’s Casper suite to deploy software to the Macs.

Filed under: Enterprise, Mac Tagged: enterprise, Fletcher Previn, IBM, it, JAMF, JAMF Nation User Conference, Mac, PC

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Jordan Kahn

October 15th



Microsoft challenges Apple w/ Surface Pro 4 iPad Pro competitor, Surface Book laptop aimed at MacBook Pro, more


Microsoft comparing its new Surface Book laptop/tablet combo with Apple’s MacBook Pro

At Microsoft’s event today it unveiled a huge array of ambitious and interesting tech which should be enough to make Apple stand up and take notice. The once-giant of the consumer electronics world has had to reinvent itself over the past couple of years, and judging from today’s event, it’s doing enough to get people interested again at the very least. At best, it could transform the way we see technology and computing.

Microsoft Band


Microsoft is going all-out on fitness monitoring tech with its newest Band. Apart from the obvious difference in form factor, the Microsoft Band is in every way a direct competitor to Apple Watch. The Band is redesigned to be a little more svelte than your typical fitness band, with a metallic frame around the display. It’s designed for people who work, but “also like to work out”. In other words, it can turn around your wrist.

Feature-wise, it’s very competitive. It has built-in GPS, UV monitoring, sleep and calorie tracking and smart notifications as well as the usual heart-rate monitor. What’s more, it has a barometer built in so that it can measure elevation and can even track your golf swing. If that wasn’t enough, it supports apps like Uber, RunKeeper, Starbucks, Subway and Twitter and also has Cortana integrated for voice-controlled actions. As fitness trackers go, it’s a true all-rounder, and Microsoft’s built a brand new health app to help you monitor all your activities with precision.

The latest Microsoft Band is cross-platform and compatible with Windows 10, iOS and Android, so you don’t even need to buy a Lumia to make use of it. If there’s a downside, it’s price. The Microsoft Band is available to pre-order from today for $249. Still, when compared to the prices Apple is charging for its own wearable with similar features, it’s pretty cheap.

Lumia 950 and 950 XL


These two new smartphones are Microsoft’s newest flagship phones and — spec wise — they may not be too much of a threat to the traditional champions of the smartphone market like the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus. But, they do have a secret weapon which has the potential to complete change how some consumers do computing.

The 950 and 950 XL have 5.2-inch and 5.7-inch WQHD resolution OLED displays respectively. The larger of the two is powered by Snapdragons octa-core 810 chip, while the smaller uses the Snapdragon 808 hexa-core processor. Both sport 20MP cameras with 4K video recording and OIS paired with a triple-LED RGB natural flash. They also both have 32GB inbuilt storage, and full USB Type-C support which will give the user a 50-percent charge in 30 minutes. They also both happen to be liquid-cooled. You read that right: A liquid-cooled smartphone. It’s not just fancy cooling for fancy cooling’s sake though, both the 950 and 950 XL support Continuum.

While Apple wants to keep OS X and iOS separate — relying instead on Continuity to move from platform to platform — Microsoft is building an OS that works on devices of any size and function. Continuum will essentially let Lumia 950 and 950 XL users turn their phones in to PCs by wirelessly connecting Bluetooth keyboards, mice and monitors. It even adapts the mobile in to one that looks and works like the fully-fledged Windows 10 for PC. To compliment the Conituum feature, Microsoft built a Display Dock which makes it super-easy to get the Lumia phones hooked up to an external monitor. The dock has three USB ports, one HDMI and one DisplayPort and charges the phone while it’s connected.

We’ve seen manufacturers try the mobile-to-PC conversion in the past. Motorola tried it with Android, but ultimately it failed to catch on. It’ll be interesting to see if Microsoft fairs any better. Windows 10 is a much more universal platform than Android was a few years ago when Motorola launched the Atrix 4G with the dock. To make Continuum work as well as Microsoft wants it to though, developers do need to make their apps compatible. What do you think: Is Microsoft’s or Apple’s the better approach here?

The Lumia 950 XL goes on sale next month for $649, while the Lumia 950 will cost $100 less.



While Apple is yet to step in to the world of head-worn virtual reality of any kind, Google launched both Glass and Cardboard. HTC and Samsung have both created VR solutions, and Microsoft is about to release HoloLens. Today, the company showed off its wearable holographic headset and wants to promote it as a business and entertainment tool. What makes it different to most VR solutions, however, is that it doesn’t need to be tethered to anything. It doesn’t require cables or even a remote PC connection to work.

The headset has been shown off by the company in the past, and resembles a very futuristic — albeit bulky — pair of sunglasses. You wouldn’t be surprised to see someone wearing these in a Sci-Fi movie. HoloLens uses its sensors to measure the space any user is in, and uses surfaces like walls and tables and project 3D images, videos and content on to them.

At its event today it showed off a game called ‘Project X-Ray’ which uses the device’s spatial mapping technology to simulate enemies jumping out from the walls of your living room. Apple is betting on the upcoming Apple TV 4 to fill this space. But it can be used for anything, from gaming to conference calling. The possibilities are only limited to what developers can imagine, or create. That is, if they’re willing to pay up the eye-watering amount required to get access to the HoleLens Developer Kit. From today, developers can apply for the privilege to cough up a cool $3,000 to get hold of the development edition.

Microsoft Surface Pro 4

With Apple having just unveiled the iPad Pro — with two Surface-inspired accessories: Apple Pen and Keyboard Case — there’s a clear feeling among tech manufacturers that the market needs big tablet/laptop crossovers. Truth is, however, that Microsoft’s been doing this for years with the Surface lineup. Today, Microsoft arguably announced the most compelling solutions so far.

At the very least, it’s released the product that iPad Pro is most directly competing with, although Microsoft used some stage time to take shots at the MacBook Air once again this year.

The Surface Pro 4 has a 12.3-inch “PixelSense” display, with a pixel density of 267ppi (5 million pixels on screen) and is coated by a ludicrously thin 0.4mm sheet of Gorilla Glass. It has a new G5 chipset designed by Microsoft and comes alongside a new Surface Pen which has 1,024 levels of pressure. This newly redesigned stylus also has a tail eraser and a full year of battery life. As a kicker, the pen can be stored magnetically on the Surface Pro 4. The new Surface Pen comes in silver, gold, red, blue, and black and the pen tips are interchangeable. Microsoft also took a swipe at Apple’s Pencil by suggesting that launching a pencil without a tail-end eraser was daft.

Specs include up to 1TB of storage and 16GB RAM, and Microsoft claims it’s 30 percent faster than the Surface Pro 3. Like other tablet-PC crossovers, the Surface Pro 4 comes with the option of a magnetically-attaching slim keyboard (in colors to match the Surface Pen). It has a bigger trackpad than previous versions, and keyboard is backlit. Prices start from $899 when the product goes on sale at the end of this month.

Surface Book

Apple has its MacBook Pro, and now Microsoft has made its very first laptop, the Surface Book which Microsoft says is better than a MacBook Pro. And it’s a little weird. The hinge looks more like links on a watch strap than a traditional notebook hinge. If Apple thought it could take on the Surface Pro with its iPad Pro, Microsoft clearly thinks it can take on the powerhouse laptops built in Cupertino.

Like the Surface Pro 4, the Surface Book has a 267PPI PixelSense touch sensitive display, but over 13.5-inches rather than 12.3-inches. It’s also bonded to the glass to make the content look like it’s on the surface of the display, rather than behind it. It has a backlit keyboard with 1.6mm travel, which Microsoft claims is “perfect” and is almost silent when used. Unlike a MacBook Pro, the screen can be detached from the keyboard. The laptop/tablet is built from machined magnesium, has a 12-hour battery life and a large, precise glass trackpad with support for 5-point multi-touch.

Inside, the Surface Book uses the latest Intel Core i5 and i7 processors, and an NVIDIA GeForce GPU with GDDR5 memory. All these internal components make the Surface Book “the fastest 12-inch laptop ever made anywhere on the planet”, according to the company who made it. It’ll be on sale on October 26 with prices from $1,499.

Does anything Microsoft announced today grab your attention, or should Apple pay attention and learn from anything Microsoft is doing here? Let us know what you think.

Filed under: Apple Watch, iOS Devices, Mac, Tech Industry Tagged: Continuum, hololens, iOS, iPad Pro, Microsoft, PC, Surface Book, Surface Pro 4, Windows 10

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Cam Bunton

October 6th


February 2016
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