Nokia D1C May Not Be a Smartphone at All

Nokia D1C Is a 13.8-Inch Android Tablet, Suggests Latest Benchmark Listing
Nokia D1C is a 13.8-inch Android tablet
The tablet is tipped to have a full-HD (1080×1920 pixels) display
Earlier reports suggested the device to be a smartphone
Nokia’s return to the smartphone market is eagerly awaited by everyone; this is precisely why the listing of company’s recently spotted D1C device on benchmark site GFX Bench is likely to disappoint many. As per the listing, the D1C is a 13.8-inch Android tablet, and not a smartphone as anticipated earlier.

Earlier this month, the specifications of a Nokia D1C device were leaked via benchmark site Geekbench, which interestingly, didn’t provide the size of the screen on the device at the time. However, a new listing on GFX Bench clarifies the display size, and tips other specifications. The Nokia D1C listing on GFX Bench suggests that the device will sport a 13.8-inch full-HD (1080×1920 pixels) display and that it will be powered by a 1.4GHz octa-core processor coupled with 3GB of RAM. It also tips that the tablet will run on Android 7.0 Nougat.

Nokia D1C is expected to come with an inbuilt storage of 16GB. In terms of optics, the tablet has been tipped to pack a 16-megapixel rear camera and an 8-megapixel camera at the front.
If real, the Nokia D1C will be the second Android tablet by the company as it has already launched tablet N1 previously.

In May, Nokia signed a deal with Finnish firm HMD Global to make Nokia-branded Android smartphones and tablets for the next 10 years. Since then, leaks have suggested that the company will be coming out with two phones this year with screen sizes of 5.2-inch and 5.5-inch. The smartphones were suggested to sport 2K resolution (QHD) displays and were tipped to come with IP68 certification, which effectively means they will be highly resistant to water and dust on the similar lines to phones like the Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge and Galaxy S7.

How to turn off Windows 10’s keylogger (yes, it still has one)


Last fall, I discussed the keylogger that Microsoft openly put into the Windows 10 Technical Preview. The company admitted that “we may collect voice information” and “typed characters.” At the time I defended Microsoft, pointing out that the Preview was “intended for testing, not day-to-day use,” and that Microsoft recommended against installing the Preview on a computer with sensitive files. I said that “I seriously doubt that the worst spyware features will remain in the finished product.”

I was wrong.

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Microsoft pretty much admits it has a keylogger in its Windows 10 speech, inking, typing, and privacy FAQ: “When you interact with your Windows device by speaking, writing (handwriting), or typing, Microsoft collects speech, inking, and typing information—including information about your Calendar and People (also known as contacts)…”

If that makes you feel creepy, welcome to the human race.

Speaking of online Microsoft documents, you may want to browse the company’s overallPrivacy Statement. To Microsoft’s credit, it’s in plain English rather than legalese. On the other hand, it’s about 17,000 words (as someone who’s paid by the word, I’m frankly jealous), so it will take time to find out if there’s anything else that’s truly awful inside.

The good news is that you can turn off the keylogging. Click Settings (it’s on the Start menu’s left pane) to open the Settings program. You’ll find Privacy…ummm….hold on a sec…OH! There it is!—on the very last row.

Once in Privacy, go to the General section and Turn off Send Microsoft info about how I write to help us improve typing and writing in the future. While you’re there, examine the other options and consider if there’s anything else here that you may want to change.

Now go to the Speech, inking and typing section and click Stop getting to know me. (I really wanted to end that sentence with an exclamation point.)

You may also want to explore other options in Privacy. For instance, you can control which apps get access to your camera, microphone, contacts, and calendar. I wish I had that capability in Android.

Microsoft trumpets Windows 10’s momentum at IFA

Nick Parker Microsoft IFA Windows 10
Nick Parker, corporate vice president of the OEM division at Microsoft, introduced the IFA audience here in Berlin to Windows 10, pointing out the momentum that the operating system already has.

“Our strategy is clear and our strategy is to build the best mobile and productivity services for the cloud-first mobile-first world,”  Parker said. However one cuts the data—509 million new Windows devices in the coming year, or 1.5 billion Windows users—Microsoft is poised to succeed, he said.

The numbers that Parker was here to talk about, though, was how Windows 10 has fared—and it has fared well. 75 million devices already run Windows 10, and 90,000 unique device models already upgraded to Windows 10 across 192 countries. “And this is a month. It will just get better from here,” Parker said.

Why this matters: Windows 8 began with a whimper. Windows 10 appears to be off with a bang, which is good news for the PC industry in general.

Showing the power of Windows 10

Microsoft’s Bryan Roper showed off the new features of Windows 10, including the digital assistant, Cortana, as well as Continuum, Microsoft’s way to turn a tablet or a phone into a full-fledged PC when connected to a large-screen display.

windows 10 phones continuum
Windows 10 Continuum.

Earlier in the week, Parker and Acer showed off what they called the world’s first “PC phone”: the Jade Primo.  It used the Continuum technology inside Windows 10 to launch Windows 10 Universal apps—though not traditional desktop software—on an external monitor.

Roper also showed off Windows Hello, the Windows biometric identification that ships with Windows 10. Windows 10’s Hello feature requires specialized hardware to be built into the PC, however, which some manufacturers have begun to include.

Partner promotion

Parker highlighted some of the hardware from Microsoft’s partners that best showed off Windows 10.

For school, the Acer Aspire One Cloudbook begins at $169. It has two mics for Cortana. The Lenovo IdeaPad 100s, just 99mm thin, manages to include a 12 hour battery. It’s priced at $229.

For business, Parker showed off the previously unannounced Dell Latitude 11 5000 2-in-1, as well as the $1249 HP Elitebook with an Intel vPro chipset, two mics, and a thin, light screen. All of the ports that business users need are included. The Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga 260 with Windows Hello fingerprint sensor starts at $999. Rugged Windows 10 notebooks include the Panasonic Toughpad FZ-M1, with an 8-hour battery and a bright display.

Further reading: The 10 coolest, fantastical, and most powerful PC reveals of IFA 2015

Microsoft also believes in the power of all-in-ones. The Dell Inspiron 24 7000 series and others represents the future of desktops, he said. An Asus Zen AiO S includes a 24-inch screen with a  4K option, and improvments to Windows Hello, with 6 speakers, 4 mics, and a 4K UHD screen.

Parker also showed off a grab bag of other notebooks. The HP Pavilion 15, running Intel Core i3, can be had for $399, which includes a DVD drive. “It brings touch to the masses,” Parker said.

rog g752 gaming notebook 1
The Asus ROG G752 gaming notebook.

Parker also highlighted the $1,399 Asus ROG G752, with a 17.3 inch screen, Nvidia GTX 980 card, and an anti-dust cooling system. The Toshiba Radius 12, for $899, which also includes Windows Hello and its Cortana button, “is an incredible PC,” Parker said. Parker also showed off a new, thin Toshiba 2-in-1 that hasn’t previously been announced.

Windows also powers the Internet of Things. Windows will power ATMs, gas pumps, and medical devices, he said. Parker showed a Toshiba environmental data logger with 20 sensors and a battery life of about six months.

How to customize Windows File Explorer’s details view

We’ve talked about File Explorer (Windows Explorer in Windows 7) several times before, and if you ask me it’s one of the most important parts of Windows to customize. Unlike a smartphone or tablet, you spend a lot of time diving into your PC’s file system and it’s worth it to get things organized just how you like it.

One good way to do that is to customize a folder’s column order—name, size, type, date modified, and so on—under the details view. It’s really easy to organize columns in the order you’d like instead of just using the defaults. In fact, you can even apply a particular column order that you create to most other folders on your system.

I’ll be showing how it’s done in Windows 10, but it works similarly in Windows 7 and 8.

Sorting downloads

Moving columns is as easy as a drag-and-drop.

Let’s say you wanted to have the date show up first in the downloads folder. Just click onDate at the top of the column, and then drag it to the left. If you wanted to put the date column last, you’d do the reverse.

If you then wanted to sort everything by date, single-click on the date column. Now all the files in the downloads folder will be sorted by date with the oldest items at the top. To reverse that order just click Date again.

This trick works for all columns.

Making a template

Now, let’s say you wanted to use a particular column setup from your downloads folder across all generic folders on your PC.

Windows offers five stadard templates for organizing File Explorer.

In Windows 10, click on This PC in the left-hand navigation column of File Explorer, then right-click on Downloads in the main window and select Propertiesfrom the context menu.

Click on the Customize tab and look under the first section that says “Optimize this folder for.”

The drop-down menu you see there consists of five options that are the standard layout templates for File Explorer. By default in Windows 10, the downloads folder uses the pictures template. Let’s change that to General items so that our downloads setup can affect most of our folders while leaving the standard Windows documents, music, and video folders untouched. You should also click the check box next to “Also apply this template to all subfolders.”

If you’ve already customized your downloads folder, unfortunately changing to General items will return all column headings to the standard general items template. Sort them again the way you like. For example, someone might prefer to see the file names first, followed by file size, then file type, and finally the date.

This setting allows you to change similar folders on the same system with one click.

Once it’s sorted, go to the File Explorer menu at the top and select View > Options > Change folder and search options. Under the View tab click Apply to Folders. A pop-up window will appear asking you to confirm the change to all folders of the same type (general items in this case). Click Yes and all your generic folders should now default to your pre-defined structure.

You can even switch other folders to your template by simply changing the template for that folder under Properties > Customize.

To revert back to the standard layout for all folders, go back to View > Options > Change folder and search options and

Kubuntu 15.10 will use KDE’s polished Plasma 5.4 desktop

kde dragons ensembleTYSON TAN
The KDE community has been hard at work since releasing Plasma 5.0 last November, which appeared as the default desktop in Kubuntu 15.04. KDE just released Plasma 5.4, which Kubuntu 15.10 will use when it launches in October.

Plasma has seen a lot of improvements since 5.0, so you’ll be in for a lot of improvements when you upgrade from Plasma 5.0 to 5.4. Plasma 5.1 added theme improvements to make KDE 4 applications better fit in and restored popular panel applets. Plasma 5.2refined the desktop further with a variety of new components, applets, icons, and a new window decoration theme. Plasma 5.3 improved power management, Bluetooth, and laptop touchpad support.

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What’s new in Plasma 5.4

plasma 5

Plasma 5.4 sees a lot of new improvements and polish, too. From improved high DPI support and progress on adopting the Wayland display server to memory use reductions and faster search functionality, there’s a lot going on under the hood.

A new volume applet integrates directly with PulseAudio—which your Linux distribution probably already uses—providing direct access to per-application volume controls and other PulseAudio settings.

sound applet

The network applet has been expanded, too, and includes network traffic graphs you can access with a few clicks right on the taskbar. Two new VPN plug-ins allow you to connect over SSH and SSTP.


There’s also a new “Application Dashboard” launcher, although Kubuntu 15.10 isn’t using it by default. It’s an alternative to the traditional pop-up menu and features a full-screen interface with icons. It would be at home on a tablet or a device with a touch screen—perhaps one powered by Plasma Mobile, the KDE project’s attempt at a smartphone interface and operating system.

application dashboard

The slick Breeze theme that beat Mac OS X Yosemite to the now-trendy flat look gained over 1400 new icons. This includes icons for Firefox, LibreOffice, and Blender, allowing those applications to fit in better on a Plasma 5.4 desktop.

The KDE project’s Plasma desktop is something special, and using it feels like a breath of fresh air. It’s more traditional than Unity and GNOME Shell, but more modern than MATEand Lxde. Where other desktop interfaces try to simplify and remove features, the KDE project packs more features in. The KDE community has gotten better over the years at exposing a lot of powerful features and options behind a simple default interface, too. If you haven’t tried KDE’s Plasma in a while, you should.