Microsoft working on foldable dual-screen Surface ‘Centaurus’ for 2019

intel tiger rapids is a dual screen pc concept idgIntel’s Tiger Rapids folding device

Microsoft has long been rumored to be working on a dual-screen phone, and the company is reportedly now also planning a larger dual-screen computer as well. According to a report from Windows Central, a new foldable Microsoft Surface ‘Centaurus’ device is coming in fall 2019.

The full details on the device are scarce, but Windows Central’s Zac Bowden reports that Microsoft has been working on Centaurus for about a year. Similar to Intel’s prototype projects, it apparently is a dual-screen 2-in-1 form factor whose two displays support tasks like inking, general productivity, and journal-keeping. Reportedly powered by Intel processors, Centaurus also will run classic Windows 32-bit programs via Windows Core OS, the rumored revamped modular version of Windows 10. That means that consumers will eventually be able to fold back and enjoy the device like either a tablet, laptop, or book, with the OS being able to visually adapt and switch between each of the modes with ease.

“If Centaurus is being used in a tablet orientation, you can fold it into a laptop position, and the OS will adjust to provide an experience akin to a laptop. This would make one screen a keyboard and trackpad and the other screen a familiar desktop with a taskbar along the bottom, and windowed apps,” explains Zac Bowden.

As for the smaller dual-screen phone dubbed Project Andromeda, Windows Central reports that the project is not dead yet, but is currently on hold. Microsoft is instead prioritizing Centaurus and wants to ensure that developers, laptop markers, and consumers are ready for the new foldable form factor. After all, this would be the first new Surface form factor since Microsoft introduced the 2-in-1 back in 2012.

This will not be the only new Surface device coming within the next two years. Last week it was revealed that Microsoft is also planning to release a standalone Surface Studio monitor with modular functionality for 2020.

Obviously, the projects are still under development, so don’t expect fall 2019 to be a solid release date just yet. Instead, consumers looking for a disruptive device might settle for a slightly similar — but also different — folding PC. Lenovo’s Yoga Book C930 features a conventional LCD display on the top and an e-ink screen inside, something that is truly unlike any other laptop in the market.

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Basic Computer Advice to stay safe online.

Below is the tried and tested advice that Microsoft and Apple has always given out to users over the past few years in regards to tech support scams, shady popups, or impromptu phone calls:

  1. Microsoft  Apple will never proactively reach out to you to provide unsolicited PC or technical support. Any communication we have with you must be initiated by you.
  2. Be wary of any unsolicited phone call or pop-up message on your device.
  3. Do not call the phone number in a pop-up window on your device and be cautious about clicking on notifications asking you to scan your computer or download software. Many scammers try to fool you into thinking their notifications are legitimate.
  4. Never give control of your computer to a third party unless you can confirm that it is a legitimate representative of a computer support team with whom you are already a customer.
  5. If skeptical, take the person’s information down and immediately report it to your local authorities.
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Microsoft’s Surface Pro 6 is the best laptop replacement — no ifs, ands, or buts

The Surface Pro 6 is the best 2-in-1 you can buy.

Image: raymond wong/mashable

2017%2f10%2f24%2f21%2fraymondwong3profile.34d72By Raymond Wong5 hours ago

Mashable Choice highlights the best of everything we cover, have experienced first-hand and would recommend to others.

Microsoft Surface Pro 6

$899 (starting)

View Product

The Good

Comes in matte black option! • Quad-core performance • Entry-level model doesn’t stink anymore

The Bad

No USB-C port(s)

The Bottom Line

Microsoft’s Surface Pro 6 is easily the best 2-in-1 computer of the year, with best-in-class performance at a great value.

Mashable Score4.5

Cool Factor4.0

Learning Curve5.0

Performance5.0

Bang for the Buck4.0

Microsoft had me at matte black.

After several generations, I can now definitively say Microsoft’s Surface Pro 6 is the best 2-in-1 laptop replacement available.

Similar to the Surface Laptop 2 (my pick for best laptop of 2018), the Surface Pro 6 doesn’t reinvent the product, but instead polishes it to near perfection with mighty quad-core performance.

Everything else about the 2-in-1 remains the same, save for a new Batman-approved matte black finish if you step up to at least the 256GB storage model.

And just like the Surface Laptop 2, the $899 entry-level version with its 8th-gen Intel Core i5 processor and 8GB of RAM is no longer an underpowered machine with a vastly inferior processor compared to the mid- and upper-tier models.

Hey Apple, take notice: Everyone deserves quad-core performance in a thin-and-light computer without the steep pricing.

No need for a new design

The screen is still superb and there's still a magnet on the left side to attach the Surface Pen.

The screen is still superb and there’s still a magnet on the left side to attach the Surface Pen.

Image: RAYMOND WONG/MASHABLE

The Surface Pro 6 looks exactly like the Surface Pro (2017) and I’m OK with that. Frankly, I’m not sure why there’s such an obsession with refreshing a product’s hardware every year.

I’m all for pretty gadgets, but the Surface Pro 6, like any laptop, is more utilitarian and it’s more important that:

  • the keyboard offers an excellent typing experience no matter if you’re sending off a tweet or typing up a dissertation.

  • the trackpad and touchscreen (if it has one) are responsive.

  • the battery life needs to last a full work or school day.

  • there are ports to connect accessories without dongles.

The Surface Pro (2017) already ticked off all of these checkboxes. So Microsoft focused on souping up the inside, which was the right call this year.

OK, there’s one cosmetic change: it now comes in matte black. But just like the Surface Laptop 2, it’s only available for the 256GB and 512GB models and not for the 128GB or top 1TB versions. All storage models are available in silver (or “platinum,” as Microsoft calls it), though.

Matte black, baby! It's so hot!

Matte black, baby! It’s so hot!

Image: RAYMOND WONG/MASHABLE

I’ve been using the $1,199 black Surface Pro 6 with the 8th-gen Intel Core i5 processor, 8GB of RAM and 256GB of storage for the last few weeks as my daily work and personal machine, and the black coating has held up well. There are a few very faint scratches here and there, but that’s mostly because I carelessly tossed it into my backpack where phones, cables, and way too many dongles live.

The 12.3-inch (2,736 x 1,824 resolution) screen is as tack sharp as before, and the touchscreen is smooth and responsive. If you get a Surface Pen (sold separately), it works just the same as on the old Surface Pro. The bezel around the screen could use some shrinking, though. Maybe next year.

The buttons are all nice and and clicky.

The buttons are all nice and and clicky.

Image: RAYMOND WONG/MASHABLE

Still got front-facing stereo speakers.

Still got front-facing stereo speakers.

Image: RAYMOND WONG/MASHABLE

Signing into my account with Windows Hello remains one of my favorite things about the Surface Pro 6 (and all of the Surface computers, for that matter). But it could be improved. The face recognition still struggles in dimmer light, and it doesn’t recognize when my hair’s all messed up in the morning or if I have my glasses on. Face ID on the new iPad Pros and iPhone XS and XR are better at identifying my face in these situations.

Windows Hello is a great way to sign into the Surface Pro 6, but it still needs some improving.

Windows Hello is a great way to sign into the Surface Pro 6, but it still needs some improving.

Image: RAYMOND WONG/MASHABLE

It’s a bummer there’s no USB-C port on the Surface Pro 6. Microsoft’s stuck with a full-sized USB 3.1 port, Mini DisplayPort, and its proprietary magnetic Surface Connect port for charging and connecting to docks.

I’m fine with all of these ports, especially the full-size USB port, but as I said in my Surface Laptop 2 review, now that Microsoft’s making the best devices in their class, it’s the company’s responsibility to help push us (kicking and screaming if need be) to adopt the smaller, reversible, and more versatile port.

Sucks there's no USB-C, but you get a full-sized USB 3 port, Mini DisplayPort, and Surface Connect port.

Sucks there’s no USB-C, but you get a full-sized USB 3 port, Mini DisplayPort, and Surface Connect port.

Image: RAYMOND WONG/MASHABLE

I sympathize with Surface Chief Product Officer Panos Panay’s reasoning that USB-C still hasn’t become as widely adopted as we’d all hoped it’d be by now. But that’s even more reason for Microsoft to back it. I’m not saying to go all in on USB-C the way Apple and Google have on their MacBooks and the Pixel Slate, but at least one would have been nice.

More power under the hood

Look at all those Chrome tabs.

Look at all those Chrome tabs.

Image: RAYMOND WONG/MASHABLE

The most notable changes to the Surface Pro 6 are the updated 8th-gen Intel Core i5 and i7 processors.

Both processors have quad-cores for faster single- and multi-core performance. Performance like this is rare on a tablet and in thin-and-light laptops, and they usually cost a significant premium. Look at the 2018 13-inch MacBook Pro: macOS aside, Apple charges $1,799 for quad-cores. Sure, the clock speed is faster on the MacBook Pro, and the integrated Intel graphics slightly better, but the Surface Pro 6 is the better value for anyone not looking to do really pro-level stuff like editing 4K video (it can do it, for sure, but not as fast as laptop with a beefier GPU).

On Geekbench 4, the Surface Pro 6 scored 4,245 on the single-core and 13,795 on the multi-core tests — 5.97 percent faster on single-core and 87.5 faster on multi-core, respectively, compared to the Surface Pro (2017) with a 7th-gen Intel Core i5 chip. That’s a 59.62 percent performance boost in multi-core performance. Microsoft promises “up to 85 percent” faster performance depending on the task.

The Surface Pro 6’s performance is comparable to the Surface Laptop 2… for multi-core performance. It scored 9.63 percent faster on single-core and 0.5 percent faster on multi-core.

Nobody does the kickstand better than Microsoft.

Nobody does the kickstand better than Microsoft.

Image: RAYMOND WONG/MASHABLE

Even with a faster clock speed, the 2018 13-inch MacBook MacBook Pro wasn’t a match for Microsoft’s tablet. The Surface Pro 6 performed 3.99 percent faster on the single-core (about 6.25 percent faster), but was 20.29 percent faster on multi-core.

Compared to the 2018 MacBook Air, the Surface Pro 6 was 14.08 percent faster on single-core and 95.71 percent faster on multi-core. No surprise since the Surface Pro’s processor has two more cores than the Air.

These benchmarks give you a sense of where the Surface Pro 6’s power slots in and how much value you’re getting per dollar.

While my black Surface Pro 6 costs $1,199, performance on the the $899 Surface Pro 6 should be the same since the only difference on my unit is more storage and a black color.

The keyboard is excellent and so is the trackpad.

The keyboard is excellent and so is the trackpad.

Image: RAYMOND WONG/MASHABLE

At the end of the day, however, unless you’re pushing the Surface Pro 6’s multi-core performance to the extreme, the 2-in-1 flies.

As I’m writing this, I have Chrome open with 27 tabs, the Spotify app streaming music, and the Netflix app streaming an episode of House of Cards and there’s no signs of the Surface Pro 6 buckling.

No stutters as I hop between tabs. No lag as when I alt-tab between apps. Windows 10 Home sings on the Surface Pro 6 and I didn’t even realize it at first until I started writing this review. With most thin-and-light laptops I’ve tested this year, I end up dealing with a fan kicking up, the OS slowing down, or a quickly depleting battery.

But not with the Surface Pro 6. I’ve gone eight-hour work days using the Surface Pro 6 on-and-off throughout the day (consisting of Chrome, Slack, email, Twitter, Microsoft Word, and Spotify) and didn’t need to plug in until I got home. The screen’s bright enough that I rarely needed to have it set beyond around 70 percent.

To pick a 2-in-1 or a laptop?

This little detail where the keyboard clips onto the display makes all the difference for lapability.

This little detail where the keyboard clips onto the display makes all the difference for lapability.

Image: RAYMOND WONG/MASHABLE

This has been my dilemma. Having reviewed the Surface Laptop 2 a month earlier, I felt sure at the time it was the better deal at $999.

But now I’m not so sure. The Surface Pro 6 starts at $899 — $100 less than the Laptop 2 — but doesn’t come with a keyboard. So with a keyboard, at the least, you’d have to spend $1,028.

Both machines have the same exact ports. But the Laptop 2 has a larger touchscreen: 13.5 inches versus 12.3 inches.

On the other hand, the Surface Pro 6 is lighter. It’s 1.7 pounds without a keyboard and 2.4 pounds with a keyboard. Regardless, it’s lighter than the 2.7-pound Laptop 2, 3.02-pound 13-inch MacBook Pro, and 2.75-pound MacBook Air.

To decide if the Surface Pro 6 is the machine for you, you gotta ask yourself a few questions:

1. Do you want macOS or Windows?

If you answered macOS, then you should close this review right now. But if you said Windows, then the next question to ask is…

2. Do you want a larger touchscreen?

If you do, then you should go with the Laptop 2. If not, then the Surface Pro 6 is your guy. But it’s not so simple…

3. Do you want to use your device to draw or take notes?

If yes, then you can only go with the Surface Pro 6. The Surface Pen works with the Laptop 2, but you won’t be able to place it flat on a table to doodle or in your laptop to read the way you can with the Surface Pro 6.

Whatever your decision is, you’re getting a winner. Where I once strongly felt the Surface Pro was inferior to a proper clamshell laptop, I now can’t rave enough about Microsoft’s 2-in-1. It’s the best laptop replacement there is and the most fun portable computer of the year. Last year that honor belonged to Google’s Pixelbook, but this year the title belongs to Microsoft.

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There’s a very simple reason why the resurgent Microsoft is threatening to overtake the slumping Apple

Matt Weinberger

0m

Satya Nadella Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella AP

  • Microsoft and Apple are jockeying for position as the world’s most valuable tech company.
  • It’s easy to chalk this up to Apple’s weakness – but don’t sleep on the fact that it’s also because of Microsoft’s strength.
  • Where Apple has to deal with fickle consumers in a volatile market, Microsoft’s focus on enterprise software and services is less exciting, but could be more durable and stable.
  • Plus, Apple has to deal with the possibility that the iPhone will face tariffs from the Trump administration, whereas Microsoft does not.
  • Finally, while Microsoft and Apple do go head-to-head on laptops and other devices, Microsoft is far less reliant on its gadget business.

As you read this, Microsoft is jockeying for position with Apple for the title of world’s most valuable tech company – something that hasn’t happened since 2010, when the Zune was still a thing. The two are roughly neck-and-neck, with each worth about $850 billion, plus or minus a couple of billion dollars, and each overtaking the other at different points during trading this week.

It’s easy to blame this turn of events on a slumping Apple, as the signs of weakening iPhone demand keep piling up, putting the hurt on the tech titan’s stock. But as much as this reversal of fortunes can be attributed to Apple’s stumbles, don’t overlook the fact that it’s also due in very large part to Microsoft’s renewed strength.

In short, it’s starting to look like Microsoft’s slow-but-steady growth in “boring” software and services for businesses is looking more attractive to Wall Street than Apple’s reliance on the sexy, huge-but-volatile consumer market.

When Satya Nadella took the CEO reins almost five years ago, it wasn’t long before he called his shot: Microsoft would stop throwing good money after bad into dead ends like Windows on smartphones, and start focusing on fast-growing businesses like the Microsoft Azure cloud and the Office 365 subscription service.

And, frankly, the follow-through has been a little boring for anyone who hasn’t gotten rich from the fact that Microsoft stock keeps reaching all-time highs. Analysts expect Microsoft to show strong growth in its cloud businesses – and quarter after quarter, Microsoft delivers. All told, Microsoft posted $114 million in revenue for its 2018 fiscal year, up 14% from the year prior, with $23 billion of that from its various cloud businesses.

It’s not as exciting as the launch of a new iPhone; customers aren’t literally lining up around the block to try new AI services for the Microsoft Azure cloud, or placing preorders for its super-secure version of Linux for connected gadgetry.

Still, it’s in hot demand. Companies large and small are turning to cloud platforms like Azure to reduce their reliance on their own servers and data centers, which has the dual benefits of reducing costs while letting them modernize their business. These buyers are famously deep-pocketed, and willing to commit to long-term contracts that keep Microsoft in the black for the long haul.


  • Furthermore, this model keeps Microsoft nice and insulated from several trends that have come to work against Apple. There’s no seasonality to the cloud business; multinational corporations aren’t much more likely to buy Office in the holiday quarter versus the summer. Plus, Apple is operating under threats from the Trump administration to place a tariff as high as 10% on the iPhone. Microsoft’s core products, offered via the internet, aren’t prone to the same.

Oh, sure, Microsoft still has a strong consumer brand, particularly with Windows operating system, Xbox video game systems, and its Surface hardware lineup. Some of those products, especially the Surface laptops, go right up against Apple. The difference, though, is that for Microsoft, these initiatives are often-lucrative and strategically-important side businesses; for Apple, selling devices (and services like iCloud and Apple Music to go with them) is the whole ballgame.

Ultimately, though, the ongoing success of Microsoft under Nadella is a reflection of the motto of the famed Y Combinator startup program: Make something people want. It’s just that in this case, the people who want it are the big spenders at large corporations, not the kinds of super-fans who buy a new phone on launch day every year. Besides, Microsoft isn’t under the same kind of regulatory scrutiny as a Google or Facebook.

So while it’s definitely possible that Apple recovers its footing, launches a blockbuster new iPhone, and gets back to being a $1 trillion company again, don’t sleep on the fact that what Microsoft has accomplished is an extraordinary turnaround in its own right, with momentum that is very likely going to keep building. One isn’t necessarily better than the other, but they’re both very strong and not at all mutually exclusive.

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Microsoft and law enforcement in India partner, shutting down alleged ‘virus alert’ call centers

Simulated virus scam popup. (Wikimedia Commons / Atomicdragon 136 Image)

There may be very slightly fewer disturbing — and fake — virus infection pop-ups in your web browser or phone calls to your home and office.

Police from two New Delhi suburbs raided 16 so-called tech-support centers this week, arresting about three dozen people thought to be responsible for some of the scams. Working with Microsoft, the law enforcement agencies in India reportedly were able to pinpoint locations where call center workers pretended to be Microsoft employees, selling services to “fix” hacked or infected computers.

You’ve likely seen the scams: a pop-up appears in a browser window, telling you your system is infected by a virus or malware, and to call a number for support. It may sport a poached Microsoft logo. Or, a robocall with a similar message arrives on your mobile phone, and you simply have to press a number to be connected to “tech support.”

In 2010, Microsoft began receiving reports of scammers making phone calls or sending emails to people.

In all cases, there is no real problem — but you’re out hundreds of dollars if you take the bait.

The latest action, reports The New York Times, follows efforts by Microsoft and law enforcement that traced many of these operations to New Delhi, which is a global hub of the call-center industry. The raids Tuesday and Wednesday follow earlier raids in India last month on 10 call centers that led to 24 arrests.

Microsoft consumer surveys cited by the Times find that one-in-five recipients actually talk to the fake support centers, and 6 percent cough up cash to try and fix something that isn’t broken.

The fake tech support scams have a long history. “In 2010, Microsoft began receiving reports of scammers making phone calls or sending emails to people,” a spokesperson for Microsoft’s Digital Crimes Unit told GeekWire — five years ago. Even back then, the average loss from those who were taken was pegged at $875 by the company.


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This guy found a way to run Apple’s Mac software on an iPad (He in fact did not)

What the guy did was buy a mirrorcast adapter and used his $1200 ipad as a second monitor from another overpriced mini.  He did not load OS10 on an Ipad. 

If you want a touch computer and everyone does, don’t buy Apple.


This guy found a way to run Apple’s Mac software on an iPad — and it works surprisingly well

Dave Smith

5h

ipad pro mac mini setup YouTube/Jonathan Morrison

  • The YouTuber Jonathan Morrison has pulled off something iPad and Mac fans have been dying to see: a full version of macOS, Apple’s operating system for Mac computers, running on an iPad.
  • For this setup, Morrison used the 2018 Mac Mini to put macOS on a 2018 iPad Pro.
  • You have to see it to believe it.

For years, one of the biggest desires among iPad owners has been for it to run Mac software.

The iPad is an excellent device for doing things like watching movies or reading books, but a handful of limitations keep it from being a real work computer, mainly that it runs iOS instead of a more robust desktop operating system like Apple’s macOS.

Apple insists that iPads and Mac computers will always be separate devices and that we will never see desktop software on an iPad. Apple’s Craig Federighi, who leads software efforts for both Mac and iOS devices, told Wired earlier this year that he was “not into touchscreens” on PCs and doubts he will change his mind.

But thankfully there’s a way to experience macOS on an iPad, even without Apple’s blessing. The YouTuber Jonathan Morrison said he saw this unique setup “hit the internet this week” and, after trying it himself, filmed how well it works, for everyone to see.

Here’s how Morrison made macOS run on an iPad Pro — and how you can do it too:

1/16

Morrison rigged up a 2018 iPad Pro to a 2018 Mac Mini to make this work.

Morrison rigged up a 2018 iPad Pro to a 2018 Mac Mini to make this work. YouTube/Jonathan Morrison

2/16

All of macOS — from the Finder to apps like Safari and Final Cut Pro — still works on the iPad Pro with this setup. And iPad-specific functions still work too, including the touchscreen and the Apple Pencil.

All of macOS — from the Finder to apps like Safari and Final Cut Pro — still works on the iPad Pro with this setup. And iPad-specific functions still work too, including the touchscreen and the Apple Pencil. YouTube/Jonathan Morrison

3/16

It seems like magic, actually seeing a functioning version of macOS running on an iPad.

It seems like magic, actually seeing a functioning version of macOS running on an iPad. YouTube/Jonathan Morrison

4/16

It’s all made possible by the Luna Display, a tiny compact adapter that turns your iPad into a secondary display. It was designed for MacBook Pros or iMacs, but it works with the 2018 Mac Mini too.

It's all made possible by the Luna Display, a tiny compact adapter that turns your iPad into a secondary display. It was designed for MacBook Pros or iMacs, but it <a href= YouTube/Jonathan Morrison

5/16

The Luna Display, which costs $80, has two variants: one that works with USB-C, and one that works with DisplayPort. It’s important to buy the right version. You need to use your computer’s native port, as this will not work with a dongle or adapter. Also, this will work only on Macs, not PCs.

The Luna Display, which costs $80, has two variants: one that works with USB-C, and one that works with DisplayPort. It's important to buy the right version. You need to use your computer's native port, as this will not work with a dongle or adapter. Also, this will work only on Macs, not PCs. YouTube/Jonathan Morrison

You can buy the Luna Display here »

6/16

Here’s what’s nice about this setup: If iOS on the iPad Pro isn’t cutting it for you, you can rig up your iPad Pro to your Mac Mini to use as your main external display, or as your left or right screen on a main external display.

Here's what's nice about this setup: If iOS on the iPad Pro isn't cutting it for you, you can rig up your iPad Pro to your Mac Mini to use as your main external display, or as your left or right screen on a main external display. YouTube/Jonathan Morrison

7/16

This also means you can finally use your iPad with a traditional keyboard, trackpad, or mouse.

This also means you can finally use your iPad with a traditional keyboard, trackpad, or mouse. YouTube/Jonathan Morrison

8/16

You can even use Apple’s own Smart Keyboard for iPad Pro, which gets its charge from the iPad itself and connects to the tablet magnetically. It’s incredible how both iPad and Mac functions all still work with this setup.

You can even use Apple's own Smart Keyboard for iPad Pro, which gets its charge from the iPad itself and connects to the tablet magnetically. It's incredible how both iPad and Mac functions all still work with this setup. YouTube/Jonathan Morrison

9/16

What’s most surprising is the lack of noticeable lag. “It’s almost instantaneous,” Morrison said.

What's most surprising is the lack of noticeable lag. YouTube/Jonathan Morrison

10/16

Still, Morrison warned against buying an iPad Pro just to use it as a monitor for your Mac Mini. “If you happen to have both, then it makes sense, because the adapter itself is relatively inexpensive,” he said.

Still, Morrison warned against buying an iPad Pro just to use it as a monitor for your Mac Mini. YouTube/Jonathan Morrison

11/16

The main limitation of this setup is your WiFi connection. If you don’t have speedy internet, you may experience a poor and laggy connection between your Mac Mini and your iPad Pro, which sounds like a bad time. The Mac Mini and the iPad Pro must be connected to the same network for this to work.

The main limitation of this setup is your WiFi connection. If you don't have speedy internet, you may experience a poor and laggy connection between your Mac Mini and your iPad Pro, which sounds like a bad time. The Mac Mini and the iPad Pro must be connected to the same network for this to work. YouTube/Jonathan Morrison

12/16

There are a few other drawbacks. Audio doesn’t come through the iPad Pro; it will still come through the Mac Mini. So you’ll probably want to connect your Mac Mini to external speakers, or headphones, or maybe even your HomePod, which Morrison said worked surprisingly well here.

There are a few other drawbacks. Audio doesn't come through the iPad Pro; it will still come through the Mac Mini. So you'll probably want to connect your Mac Mini to external speakers, or headphones, or maybe even your HomePod, which Morrison said worked surprisingly well here. YouTube/Jonathan Morrison

13/16

The other issue is that you need an external display to connect these two computers in the first place, because you’ll need a monitor to set everything up.

The other issue is that you need an external display to connect these two computers in the first place, because you'll need a monitor to set everything up. YouTube/Jonathan Morrison

14/16

In order for this to work, you’ll also need to use your iPad Pro without a password, or be good at typing your password without seeing what you’re doing, because you won’t have an opportunity to see what you’re typing until your iPad is actually on. (This is because the iPad is acting as a display in this setup, not as your main computer.)

In order for this to work, you'll also need to use your iPad Pro without a password, or be good at typing your password without seeing what you're doing, because you won't have an opportunity to see what you're typing until your iPad is actually on. (This is because the iPad is acting as a display in this setup, not as your main computer.) YouTube/Jonathan Morrison

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Still, Morrison said this setup “works way better than I could have imagined.” To prove his point, he showed Final Cut Pro, Apple’s high-end video software for Macs, running smoothly on his iPad Pro.

Still, Morrison said this setup YouTube/Jonathan Morrison

While this setup has some obvious limitations, it gives you an idea of how well Mac software might work on an iPad, since this particular iPad Pro was running Mac software like Safari and Final Cut Pro using a traditional mouse and keyboard, though the touchscreen (and Apple Pencil) could still work too.

It’s incredible to see it all actually perform the way you’d want it to, with no apparent lag, even though this type of iPad ability isn’t officially sanctioned by Apple.

I’ve owned an iPad since the third-generation model, the first with a Retina display. I upgraded to the iPad Air when that was available, and I tried upgrading to the most recent iPad Pro, but I sadly returned it less than 24 hours later because I felt it wasn’t a good work computer for me.


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Scam websites are using that green https padlock to fool you

Angela Lang/CNET

You may have heard you should look for the padlock symbol at the top of a website before entering your password or credit card information into an online form. It’s well-meaning advice, but new data shows it isn’t enough to keep your sensitive information secure.

As it turns out, fraudsters got wise and started adding the padlock, which until recently was a bright green in most browsers, to their websites too. That means a padlock is no guarantee that a website is safe.

That’s according to data from cybersecurity firm PhishLabs, first reported by security writer Brian Krebs, which shows that almost half of all fraudulent pages have a padlock — meant to indicate that the site is secure — next to the URLs of their websites. Scammers are taking advantage of the fact that many internet users rely on the padlock symbol to decide whether to trust a website, according to an October report from the Anti-Phishing Working Group.

“Phishers are taking advantage of unclear security messaging” around the symbol, the report’s authors said.

The upshot is that there’s no one trick to protect you from the dark side of the internet. You have to be savvier than ever to avoid scammers and check for more than one sign that a website is legitimate.

That means making sure the website’s URL is correct and, whenever possible, typing the URL into the browser instead of following a link from an email. Tools like password managers and security software can also help: To stop you from being fooled by an extra convincing scam website, they’ll warn you when a URL doesn’t match the legitimate website or stop you from opening a scammy site to begin with.

“Awareness really is key,” said Adam Kujawa, director of the research arm of cybersecurity company Malwarebytes. “It’s up to the user to say, is this actually legit?”

What the padlock really means

The padlock has always been an imperfect symbol. It’s there to tell you something that’s specific, and also pretty technical, and that’s hard to get across with a simple image.

The lock is supposed to tell you that a website sends and receives information from your web browser over an encrypted connection. That’s all. You can tell a website has an encrypted connection because it starts with the letters https, not http. These days websites use an encryption standard called TLS. The secure connection makes it so nobody can read your web traffic as it travels through the internet’s vast, global infrastructure.

The lock doesn’t tell you anything about the legitimacy of the site.

PhishLabs CTO John LaCour

Here’s why an encrypted connection good thing: it makes sure that sensitive information like passwords and credit card numbers gets scrambled up so that only the website intended to receive it can read it. That’s really important for things like online shopping or signing on to your bank’s website.

That’s also why it’s still true that you should never enter your information if a website doesn’t have a secure connection.

But lots of people don’t know the lock means something so specific, said John LaCour, Chief Technology Officer at PhishLabs. “We’ve dumbed thing down to lock meaning ‘safe’,” he said.

Criminals can use security features too

Scammers who want to trick you into entering sensitive information can put a green padlock on their websites too, and they’re doing it more and more. When PhishLabs began collecting data in early 2015, less than half a percent of phishing websites sported a padlock. The number climbed quickly, up to about 24 percent in late 2017 and now more than 49 percent in the third quarter of 2018.

It makes sense that scammers would be using the padlock more and more, LaCour said. That’s because it’s gotten easier and cheaper for website creators to use an encrypted connection, thanks to pushes from cybersecurity experts at Google, Electronic Frontier Foundation and other tech heavyweights.

Criminals can now easily obtain certificates that enable the padlock to show up and encryption to take place, and they can do it without revealing very much about who they are.

What’s more, changes at major browsers like Chrome and Firefox have made sites without TLS encryption look much more dangerous to users, with a very visible warning that the site isn’t secure. That provided extra motivation for criminals to show the padlock on their websites, LaCour said, and avoid looking obviously shady.

“The lock doesn’t tell you anything about the legitimacy of the site,” he said. “It only tells you that your data is encrypted as it’s sent over the internet.”

It’s not all bad news

It’s probably for the best that scammers are using encryption on their phishing websites, said Nick Sullivan, head of cryptography at Cloudflare, a company that, among other things, helps organizations encrypt their websites.

That’s because sending valuable information that anyone could intercept and read is always a bad idea, even if your immediate problem is that you’ve just sent off your bank account information to a scammer in another country.

“There’s nothing bad about phishing sites having encryption,” Sullivan said.


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