Tech News – September 2015

Tell Me About IT

Tech News and Thoughts from the Somerbys IT Team

Every month we’ll be bringing you news and insights from the IT and tech world. We’ll only share really useful content that we find throughout the month and we really hope you’ll like it. If you’d rather not get this email then simply click the link at the bottom and we’ll do our best not to cry into our biscuits.

Summer was busy in the Somerbys IT office

Windows 10 arrived at last and it’s been the talk of the office and our Twitter ever since. First thoughts? Yes, we like it, and it’s much faster than Windows 8. Our MD Allan installed Windows 10 on his wife’s new laptop and it was fairly seamless once the old software was taken off.  Like all new software, it’s not without its issues, and we hope to update you on our findings very soon.

Some shock news this month – Computers don’t like pickled onions! If you were planning on feeding pickled onions to your laptop then stop it right now. It’s not a great idea. How do we know? Well we had first hand experience of this recently when a client brought their machine in in a panic (and a stink). The accident happened just a few days before some serious work needed to be submitted, and lacing it with pickle wasn’t part of the plan.  We quickly took the important data off the machine and stored it in a cloud once we managed to boot it up. We fixed the machine and we were once again left to lecture someone about the importance of backing up your data.  Stored amongst the important proposals were family pictures and music. Losing your work is one thing but Aunty Margaret and Van Halen? That’s a risk too far, surely? Dropbox or Microsoft OneDrive can save you from a real pickle so please install them or give us a call and we’ll get you set up.

Michelle Granger from the Somerbys’ Team celebrates seven years with the company! We wish her many happy returns and hope she doesn’t get the seven year itch! Thanks for all your input and hard work, Michelle. Our team all seem to stay here, you know. It’s a great feeling to have such a loyal team and it only adds to the service at your end.

And there’s something in the water here at Somerbys IT… We’re expecting two new additions to the wider team this Christmas. (Sorry about using the C word by the way but it’s September so we’re going to have to get used to it!)  This December Aaron and his partner are expecting their first baby! And then in early January Kevin and his partner are expecting their second. We look forward to the new arrivals.

Here’s The Best Of The News To Keep You Up-to-date With IT!

Square POS Reader Hack The Square POS reader is a great tool for small retailers. In a world of simple, fast payments it’s really giving us something to talk about. But there were fresh warnings last month about the possibility of hacking.  Nothing’s safe from hacking but it appears that ‘home tools’ could tamper with the magnetic strip in the Square reader and use it to clone cards.  As the company pointed out, the magnetic strips are about as advanced as a cassette tape, and the chip and pin is far more secure. They are offering free chip and pin readers to pre-orders now until October though, when they will then become the standard. Don’t Be A Square – Stay Safe At The Till

Windows 10:  It’s Free… Unless You Want To Watch A Movie   Windows 10 has been in the news this summer. But the fact is, it’s a free upgrade and a welcome one for many who disliked Windows 8. But it turns out that the demise of Media Player has created a new problem: you now have to pay for the DVD App! The system now won’t play DVDs as standard, forcing users to buy the DVD App from the Windows store. The £11.59 App is not cheap in App terms, either. Windows 8 didn’t support a free playback feature either, but the news that you have to buy an App to play a DVD on Windows 10 didn’t get missed in this report. Feature Films: There’s An App For Them (And It’s Not Cheap!)

Older PC Users Warned: Be Wary Of Windows 10 No, this isn’t a story about silver surfers getting into trouble with Microsoft’s new software. Older PCs, but more importantly their drivers, are potentially unable to cope with Windows 10. It’s been reported that machines older than three years could struggle to run the OS due to insufficient drivers… but it’s not clear which machines. There is hope and there are some links in this article to help – but of course you don’t need to worry when you have us on your side.  Windows 10 Upsets The Older Generation

The Tech Rich List (This’ll Make You Sick) Here at Somerbys IT we’re all addicted to tech and new shiny things, so we’re funding some big tech companies’ serious pension schemes. The tech industry is a multi-billion pound super-power and one that’s set to grow and grow. The guys and gals at the top are quite obviously ‘doing ok’. They’re not short of a bob or two.  From Mark Zuckerberg to Michael Dell from Dell, this list shows us the real winners in the tech game. The richest person? Our old mate Bill Gates. The Microsoft founder is worth an estimated $79bn!  From Tech To Riches – The Top 10 Minted Geeks

Windows 10 WiFi Makes Sense To Hackers The new Windows 10 WiFi trick has got a few feathers ruffled. Connecting to a friend’s WiFi is now easier on Windows 10 with WiFi Sense. The system allows ‘trusted’ friends to join your networks without using the password via an encrypted password sent wirelessly. The ability to do this over Facebook has left many worried about fresh hacks to WiFi via sites like Facebook. You don’t have to share your WiFi as default but it’s simple to leave on and one to watch. WiFi Passwords: Is That Awkward Conversation Over?

SIT Hacks: We Test IT So You Don’t Have To

Each month we’ll be sharing our findings and tips and tricks with you. We like to test and share the knowledge so keep an eye on upcoming SIT Hacks.

To Windows 10 or not? Well, we’re still testing it and adding our thoughts to a blog that we hope to publish next month. So far opinion is good and we’re happy with the new OS. We’ve added Windows 10 to a new machine with no problem at all and it’s certainly faster and more stable. Our advice? Don’t jump just yet… There’s no clear advantage to moving unless you’re having real issues with Windows 8. Windows 7 works just fine and at the moment you’ll be potentially better to wait and save yourself the hassle of upgrading. In time of course the Apps will be written for Windows 10 and you’ll run out of choice but for now it’s a waiting game for most.

Apple Watch  Have you got one yet? Our MD Allan Page has. He’s a real Apple fan and wanted to add the Watch to his Apple collection. His first thoughts are that it’s really just a watch and offers nothing more than the phone. It’s a cool toy and looks the part but does it add anything to the iOS experience? He’s not sure.  Rumour has it that there’s already a Watch OS 2 update due and maybe it’s worth waiting to see what that brings. So overall, a nice toy but we’re failing to see a compelling reason to buy one unless you’re a real Apple lover. And That’s IT!

  • If you need help with Windows 10 then call us.
  • If you need help with security to avoid WiFi sense hacks or pickled onions – we’re here to help.
  • Want to be on the tech rich list? We’ll let you know when we get there..!

All the best,  and stay safe out there.

If you can’t be careful then always keep a back-up..!

The Team at Somerbys IT