Software

Amazon Fire TV Cube gets multi-room audio and follow-up mode

Amazon Fire TV Cube gets multi-room audio and follow-up mode

Amazon is releasing an update for its Fire TV Cube, bringing multi-room audio and more to its entertainment device. The features are arriving this week and include the maker's Follow-up Mode, which eliminates the need to repeatedly say "Alexa." The model is also getting Alexa announcements, the ability to adjust TV volume using voice commands, and more.

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Microsoft Office 365 apps get Dark Mode on macOS Mojave

Microsoft Office 365 apps get Dark Mode on macOS Mojave

In September, Apple released macOS Mojave with Dark Mode, an optional color scheme that replaces bright bars and backgrounds with darker shades. Today Microsoft pushed out an update for its Office 365 apps on Mac that adds a Dark Mode matching the optional dark interface in Mojave. Office users on Mac can enable the feature after updating.

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Windows 10 Privacy dashboard confuses more than it informs

Windows 10 Privacy dashboard confuses more than it informs

Almost all software these days, from small apps to hulking operating systems, scrap some pieces of data from users. Some simply take stats needed to improve the app or service. Others use that same excuse to gather even more information, personal or otherwise. To make sure users don’t misinterpret their activities or sue them for such, companies like Google and Microsoft provide dashboards for users to see and control what data they collect from you. Unfortunately, Microsoft’s version of that for Windows 10 isn’t exactly doing what it says it’s doing.

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Firefox 64 arrives with better tab organization and feature suggestions

Firefox 64 arrives with better tab organization and feature suggestions

Mozilla has released Firefox 64 for desktop, giving its users access to better tab organization and a contextual feature recommender (CFR), among other things. The changes make it easier for users to organize the dozens of browser tabs they may have open, as well as discovering Firefox features and add-ons that they may be otherwise unaware of.

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Amazon Alexa finally gets location-based routines and reminders

Amazon Alexa finally gets location-based routines and reminders

Amazon has updated its Alexa personal assistant with new features first revealed back in September: location-based routines and reminders. Users in the United States are on the receiving end of the new feature rollout, according to the company. With it, someone can order Alexa to give them a reminder for a specific thing only when they're in the relevant location, such as at home or the office.

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New Microsoft Edge supports Chrome extensions, confirmed

New Microsoft Edge supports Chrome extensions, confirmed

Last week we confirmed that Microsoft would indeed be re-launching their Microsoft Edge web browser with Chromium innards - today we've got news on Chrome extensions. "It is our intention to support existing Chrome extensions," said Microsoft's Kyle Alden. It's not clear yet whether Microsoft will support a Windows 10 version of a Google Chrome sort of app store. It is confirmed that the extensions that'll work and already do work on the chrome web browser should work for Microsoft Edge with Chromium.

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New Xbox Kids restrictions launch with Fortnite

New Xbox Kids restrictions launch with Fortnite

This week the folks at Xbox launched a new set of tools for parents to restrict the sort of gameplay to which their child has access - starting with Fortnite. One might understand the ultimate popularity of the game when one realizes these tools did not exist before, and that Microsoft is using Fortnite as a launching pad for parents to enact greater control over what their child sees on their Xbox One. It all begins at account.microsoft.com/family - the website.

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Windows 10 update gives Surface Book 2 the gift of BSOD

Windows 10 update gives Surface Book 2 the gift of BSOD

Another Windows 10 update, another report of system-breaking bugs. Microsoft has just rolled out a cumulative update on top of the already bug-ridden October update. While the bugs that followed after that may have been relatively minor, this latest one is delivering the dreaded Blue Screen of Death (BSOD). And while it may not be widespread, it embarrassingly affects the Surface Book 2, one of Microsoft’s own flagship PCs.

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Chrome 71 rolls out to crack down on wayward sites, extensions

Chrome 71 rolls out to crack down on wayward sites, extensions

Google Chrome has long displaced Microsoft’s Internet Explorer as the most used web browser, be it on desktop or mobile. But just like Explorer, its size and popularity also make it the perfect unwitting accomplice in ruining users’ experience on the Web. That’s why Google is putting its foot down on stubborn website owners and extension developers and its stricter policies will are now in full effect with the arrival of Chrome 71 for Windows, Mac, and Linux.

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New Google Sounds app makes Android ringtones, alarms easy

New Google Sounds app makes Android ringtones, alarms easy

This December an Android app called Sounds (by Google) will make the audio cues on your smartphone very, very simple to modify. Not that the process was too complicated to figure out before, but never before has Google made the modification of all sounds on any given Android so simple. With the release of Google's "Sounds" app, users will be able to "choose [their] favorite sounds for alarms, ringtones, and notifications."

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Microsoft Edge to be replaced by Chromium-based browser

Microsoft Edge to be replaced by Chromium-based browser

It seems that Microsoft can never rid itself its web browser curse. Although it became the most used browser in the world, Internet Explorer ended up also becoming its most unpopular. Redmond tried to separate itself from the legacy with Microsoft Edge. After no small amount of aggressive marketing and even intrusive tactics, it seems that Microsoft is ready to throw in the towel and build a new default browser for Windows 10, one built around the same rendering engine used by rival Google Chrome.

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Windows Lite is a stripped down Windows 10 S successor

Windows Lite is a stripped down Windows 10 S successor

The latest iPad Pro and Google Pixel Slate has gotten people talking about next-gen computers again. The Pixel Slate, in particular, had decent hardware but left users wanting a bit more from the software. There’s little doubt Chrome OS has potential, with a bit of polish, something even Microsoft may be indirectly acknowledging. That’s probably why it insists on spinning out “Chrome OS killers”, like a certain “Windows Lite” that the company may be close to announcing.

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