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After every big Windows 10 update is released, it seems we hear about major gremlins affecting some computers – that’s certainly the case for the latest April 2018 Update – but how many users have been affected by PC problems caused by Microsoft’s desktop OS since its launch nearly three years ago? According to UK consumer watchdog Which, no less than half of all Windows 10 users have been beset by problems with their PC. This conclusion comes from a survey of 1,100 members of Which, with the issues encountered ranging from minor glitches to show-stopping bugs preventing the PC in question from working. The most prevalent flaws in those encountered by respondents were software compatibility issues, as cited by 21% – including apps that failed to run entirely following an update. Hardware problems, such as a peripheral not working following an upgrade, were also commonplace, affecting 16% of those surveyed. Some folks said their PC was slower following an update, and others ended up with a computer that failed to work or boot entirely. Of those unfortunates that fell into the latter camp, 46% said they had to pay someone to repair their PC, with the average cost of that work being £67 (around $90, AU$120). As a result, the Which website is banging the drum for Microsoft to better consider the consumer rights of users, and to consider paying compensation to anyone who has experienced a loss of any kind – presumably of data, or time – thanks to a problem with Windows 10. More can be found on OUR FORUM.

Tomorrow is Patch Tuesday, and Microsoft is expected to release new security fixes for Windows operating system and other software. Windows 10, 8.1 and 7 will be receiving new cumulative updates tomorrow with bug fixes, performance improvements, and patches. Patch Tuesday is the unofficial name of Microsoft’s scheduled release of updates for Windows operating, and it occurs on the second Tuesday of each month. Microsoft will kick off this month’s Patch Tuesday rollout tomorrow, and just as expected, Windows 10 April 2018 Update will be getting some important bug fixes. It’s worth noting that all supported versions of Windows will receive new patches tomorrow and later this month. The cumulative updates will include both security and non-security improvements. Microsoft is also expected to fix the reported bugs in Windows 10 version 1803 with tomorrow’s update, though it’s worth knowing that the operating system won’t receive any new features or major improvements. The cumulative updates are only supposed to address the bugs and improve the performance of the platform. Keep up to date and visit OUR FORUM.

Microsoft has released a new preview build of Windows 10 which contains a number of improvements for Windows Mixed Reality, among other tweaks. Build 17686, which has been pushed out to ‘skip ahead’ and fast ring testers, makes changes that include allowing Windows Mixed Reality apps to use the Camera Capture UI API to effectively take grabs of the virtual world. So, for example, if you’re in the Skyloft running the Mail app, you can snap an image of your virtual view and directly insert that into an email you’re composing. For those using a Mixed Reality headset with something like a backpack PC, another useful tweak is that it’s no longer necessary to plug in a monitor, so you can simply run with the backpack machine and headset. You’ll still need to hook up a monitor in order to set things up for the first time, but after that, you can have auto-login configured and dispense with the display for a much freer Mixed Reality experience Microsoft further notes that it has tweaked Mixed Reality video capture, making it easier to stop a video via the Start menu. More details listed on OUR FORUM.

Intel’s got some great ideas. The project codenamed Tiger Rapids is said to be the future of mobile computing. Intel Tiger Rapids is a dual-screen prototype that runs full Windows 10 operating system, has a 7.9-inch LCD on one side and E Ink panel on the other. Intel’s Tiger Rapids, the conceptual prototype, was shown off for the first time at Computex 2018. People familiar with the matter believe that this is could be the evolution of 2-in-1s. It might end up replacing the tablets and laptops in a year or two. The smartphone isn’t quite versatile or comfortable enough for productivity, and a dual-screen device is going to fix this problem. Intel has actually engineered the dual-screen Windows 10, and the company has developed a software to power the E Ink panel. The LCD panel boots Microsoft’s desktop operating system. Intel Tiger Rapids isn’t really attractive, but it’s a prototype device from a chipmaker after all. One screen of the prototype boots Windows 10, so you can run apps such as Word or Excel, the second screen lets you take notes and it would appear on the first screen so that the user can make use of it. For example, if you draw something on the E Link panel, it’ll display on the first screen and it can also turn the handwritten words into texts. More is posted on OUR FORUM.

Earlier this year, Microsoft announced S Mode for Windows 10 and phased out Windows 10 S. The “S” doesn’t stand for anything in particular, but Microsoft says Windows 10 in S Mode is streamlined for simplicity, security, and speed. Windows 10 in S Mode only allows the installation of apps from Microsoft Store (formerly Windows Store). Windows 10 in S Mode basically restricts the use of Win32 software. It’s designed for low-end devices in the education market, and Microsoft is still committed to the project. Microsoft is readying a feature called Switch to S Mode. The company is still working on Switch to S Mode feature and it will launch with Windows 10 Redstone 5. It would allow you to easily switch to the S Mode from the Settings app. As noted above, it’s a seamless process so you will be able to enable it with a few taps. You can switch to Windows 10 S by following the on-screen instructions in the settings app. The feature is already available in Windows 10 Build 17686, the most recent preview of Windows 10. The S Mode will likely be a feature of the Redstone 5 update due in the fall. Visit OUR FORUM for further details.

We have been following the EU’s investigating into Google’s anti-competitive practices for some years now, and its second major investigation is now coming close to a conclusion. Last year the EU fined Google $2.7 billion for its abuse of its search dominance to push its comparison shopping service. Now the EU has indicated they are getting ready to impose a fine on Google for its abuse of its smartphone operating system monopoly which could be up to 10% of its annual turn-over, or around $11 billion. Margrethe Vestager, the serving European Commissioner for Competition, said that the commission is “poised to announce the negative finding within weeks,” without revealing an actual number. Google stands accused of using its dominant Android mobile operating system to shut out rivals and favoring its own services. The European Commission does have teeth and recently forced Apple to pay back $15 billion in back taxes to Ireland. While the Google fine may not reach quite the same heights, it’s impact may end up being much more far-reaching in making a supposedly open operating system really open. More details are posted on OUR FORUM.

 

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