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iPad Air vs Microsoft Surface Pro 3: This Time It’s Personal



Can Microsoft’s multi-role slate offer you more than Apple’s iPad? We find out

Microsoft made a lot of laptop/tablet hybrid fans happy yesterday when it announced the new Surface Pro 3. The main theme behind the device can pretty much be summed up as bigger, better, and more, more, more. The Surface Pro 3 has a bigger display, better processors, more RAM, more storage, and more of everything that makes a tablet good.

Over the past two years Microsoft has attempted to break into the tablet space numerous times, its Surface line of hybrid machines were designed to replace both your laptop and your tablet (or, as Microsoft hoped, your MacBook and your iPad). This of course didn’t happen and Microsoft ended up losing hundreds of millions of dollars on its post-PC project.

The Surface Pro 3 couldn’t have happened without the failures of the two machines that preceded it. Microsoft was forced to learn some tough lessons over the past year or two, with regards to both Windows and its burgeoning hardware aspirations, and the Surface Pro 3, at least on the surface, looks to show the company FINALLY making some headway.

The obvious question on everyone’s minds is how does the new Surface 3 compare to Apple’s flagship iPad Air? It’s a tough question to answer because the Surface 3 is actually designed to be a tablet and a laptop replacement–not just a tablet alternative. So how do the two stack up anyway?

Design & Display

Apple’s iPad Air is made from a solid block of machine-crafted aluminum and measures 240 mm (9.4 in) (h) x 169.5 mm (6.67 in) (w) x 7.5 mm (0.30 in) (d). It weighs 469 grams. The body houses a 9.7-inch 2048×1536 pixel color IGZO display at 264 pixels per inch. Its aspect ratio is 4:3.

Microsoft’s Surface 3 is made from a magnesium alloy and measures 201 mm (7.93 in) (h) x 292 mm (11.5 in) (w) x 9.1mm (0.36 in) (d). It weighs 800 grams. The body houses a 12-inch 2160×1440 pixel ClearType HD display at 216 pixel per inch. Its aspect ratio is 3:2.

The first thing you’ll notice about the Surface 3 versus the iPad Air is that the iPad Air is noticeably thinner and lighter. But the comparison isn’t exactly fair for a number of reasons.

First, the Surface 3 boasts a screen that is over two inches larger. The second reason is that the Surface 3 isn’t specifically designed to solely take on the iPad Air. It’s a hybrid device, which means Microsoft is positioning it as the perfect device for users who need the power of a laptop and the portability of a tablet. That’s why the Surface 3 has a 12-inch screen and an optional keyboard cover.

Processor, RAM, Storage & Expansion

The iPad Air comes in 16GB, 32GB, 64GB, and 128GB configurations, but offers no external expansion. The Surface 3 comes in 64GB, 128GB, 256GB, and 512GB configurations, and offers a microSD card reader that takes cards up to 64GB in size. No question about it: the Surface 3 is the clear winner here by a long shot. 512GB in a tablet is unheard of.

As for processor and RAM, the Surface 3 also comes out clearly ahead. It features an Intel Core 1.6 Ghz i3, i5, or i7 processor and 4GB or 8GB of RAM depending on your configuration. The iPad Air features Apple’s A7 chip and 1GB of RAM.

What all this means is that, spec-for-spec, the Surface 3 cleans the floor with the iPad Air. It’s got up to eight times the RAM and offers a wide range of processors to fill anyone’s needs. Of course these specs aren’t exactly fair comparisons either. The iPad Air isn’t designed to be a laptop replacement, so it doesn’t need all the extra power inside. A product better suited for component comparisons to the Surface 3 would probably be the 12-inch MacBook Air – something we’ll cover in a separate comparison.

Connectivity & Ports

The iPad Air has a Lightning connector on the bottom for charging and transferring data and a 3.5mm audio jack for plugging in headphones or external speakers. Inside it you’ll find 802.11a/b/g/n and Bluetooth 4.0, as well as GPS and, in select models, 4G.

The Surface 3 has a dedicated power charger on the side along with another coupling connector to attach an optional Touch Cover/Keyboard. It includes a full-size USB 3.0 port, a MiniDisplay port, and a 3.5 mm audio jack. Inside you’ll find Wi-Fi 802.11ac/802.11 a/b/g/n, and Bluetooth 4.0. Unfortunately there is still no 4G option.

In this area, the iPad Air beats the Surface 3 because it gives users the choice of 4G–something that is very important for a lot of people. But besides that the Surface 3 again cleans the floor with the iPad Air. It’s got all the connectivity options laptop users are accustomed to and adds the ports some iPad users with the iPad had (USB, anyone?). One thing we would say thought is that both use proprietary charging solutions rather than microUSB, which is at least midly irritating.


On the camera front the iPad Air features a front 1.2MP 720 HD camera and a rear 5MP 1080 HD camera. The Surface 3’s front camera is 5MP 1080 HD, and its rear is also 5MP 1080 HD.

Keeping in mind that more than the megapixels of a camera matters in good photos, it’s still clear that the Surface 3’s cameras beat the iPad Air’s. The specs don’t lie: a 5MP front and rear camera on the Surface 3 makes it the tablet with the best camera options.

Software & Apps

Okay, this is where you really begin to see the differences between the Surface 3 and the iPad Air. The iPad Air features iOS 7.1. The Surface 3 features Windows 8.1 Pro. There are well over half a million iPad apps. The Surface 3 on the other hand has a little more than 100,000.

Hands down, iOS 7 is the best mobile operating system on the planet. It’s got the apps, the security, and the ease of use. Windows 8.1 Pro on the other hand is a little laggy for my taste and a bit slow and prone to crashes.

However, when it comes to OSes on tablets, the Surface 3 has the power of the full Windows desktop behind it. You can run any Windows program on it just like you can on a standard Windows laptop. In this way, the Surface 3 offers much better software than the iPad Air. It would be a dream if the iPad could also run OS X, but it doesn’t look like that will happen anytime soon.


The iPad Air starts at £399 for the 16GB Wi-Fi model and goes all the way up to £739 for the 64GB Wi-Fi+4G model. The Surface 3 doesn’t have UK prices yet but in the US the Core i3, 4GB RAM, 64GB storage model will cost $799 (about £473) while the top-end Core i7, 8GB RAM, 512GB storage model costs $1,949 (about £1150). As you can see the Surface 3 will cost much more than the iPad Air, but again, it’s more comparable to a laptop than a tablet.

So, which is right for you?

Despite the massive differences to the Surface 3 and the iPad Air, answering which is the right one for you is relatively straight forward. Are you a user who frequently carries a laptop and a tablet around with you? Or are you a user who just likes a good, solitary tablet experience?

If you long for the day when you can ditch your laptop or tablet and carry just one, the Surface 3 is the best option for you (provided you’re a Windows user). It’s loaded with the full version of Windows and packed with powerful specs. Getting the Surface 3 will allow you to carry just one device instead of two.

However, if you’re the kind of person who just wants the best tablet experience possible, get an iPad. Its design, user experience, and OS can’t be beat. And since most users nowadays just want to surf the web, check email, and post pictures, the iPad is more than enough for that.

So, power-user, or need a tablet and laptop for work: get a Surface 3. Casual user who uses a tablet for simple, fun tasks: the iPad Air is your best bet.


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Shares in the Bank of Chile were down on Monday after it confirmed hackers had syphoned off $10 million (roughly Rs. 67 crores) of its funds, mainly to Hong Kong, though the country’s second-largest commercial bank said no client accounts had been impacted.

The cyberheist is the latest in a string of such attacks, including one in May in Mexico in which thieves used phantom orders and fake accounts to steal hundreds of millions of Mexican pesos out of the country’s banks, including Banorte.

Shares in the Bank of Chile, which is controlled by the Chilean Luksic family and Citigroup, were down 0.47 percent at CLP 100.4 ($.16) in mid-day trading.

Bank CEO Eduardo Ebensperger told Chilean daily La Tercera in an interview on Saturday that hackers had initially used a virus as a distraction, prompting the bank to disconnect 9,000 computers in branches across the country on May 24 to protect customer accounts.

Meanwhile, the hackers quietly used the global SWIFT bank messaging service to initiate a series of fraudulent transactions that were eventually spotted by the bank and cancelled but not before millions were funnelled to accounts abroad.

“The [attack] was meant to hurt the bank, not our customers,” Ebensperger said.

Ebensperger said a forensic analysis conducted by Microsoft had determined the attack was the work of a sophisticated international group of hackers, likely from eastern Europe or Asia, and that the bank had filed a criminal complaint in Hong Kong.

The bank said in a May financial statement that it would work with insurers to recoup the lost funds.





source: Gadgets 360

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arlier this month, Huawei introduced the Watch 2 smartwatch with an eSIM and voice call support. Now, a new development claims that the company is procuring OLED displays from Samsung. The South Korean giant is said to have already sent out samples to Huawei, and if all goes well, full scale production is expected to start by Q3 2018. The smartphone to sport these 6.9-inch OLED panels is said to release sometime in the fourth quarter or even early 2019, and we largely expect to see them on the Huawei Mate 20 Pro.

South Korean media The Bell reports that Samsung is in the process of finalising samples with Huawei for its order of 6.9-inch OLED displays. These large-sized displays are usually seen on Huawei’s P series or Mate series. While the P30 series is not expected to arrive before MWC 2019, the Mate series traditionally arrives sometime in Q4. Furthermore, with the screen size being so large, we expect the Pro version to sport the 6.9-inch display, while the Mate 20 could sport a 6.1-inch or some such.

If Huawei is indeed bringing a 6.9-inch display smartphone, it should easily win the screen size battle, as the iPhone X Plus is expected to sport a 6.5-inch display, while the Samsung Galaxy Note 9 is expected to sport a 6.4-incher. These large sized displays are very popular in the Chinese market, and Huawei wants to meet expectations in its home market. Bigger screens are popular also because of the large text area used by the Chinese language, the report adds. Huawei wouldn’t want to lose its momentum in its biggest market by not staying ahead of its game.

Of course, all of this is based on sheer speculation, and we expect you to take everything with a pinch of salt, till Huawei makes things official.



Source: Gadget360

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With growing censorship and regulations threatening global internet freedom and security, in turn, we’ve seen an increasing number of services become available to protect your online web browsing.

Virtual Private Networks (or VPNs) have become increasingly popular in recent years for their ability to bypass government censorship and geo-blocked websites and services, and do so without giving away who is doing the bypassing.

For a VPN to do this, it creates what is known as a tunnel between you and the internet, encrypting your internet connection and stopping ISPs, hackers, and even the government from nosing through your browsing activity.

We explain the basics of what a VPN is here
What is a VPN Tunnel?
When you connect to the internet with a VPN, the VPN creates a connection between you and the internet that surrounds your internet data like a tunnel, encrypting the data packets your device sends.

While technically created by a VPN, the tunnel on its own can’t be considered private unless it’s accompanied with encryption strong enough to prevent governments or ISPs from intercepting and reading your internet activity.

The level of encryption the VPN tunnel has depends on the type of tunneling protocol used to encapsulate and encrypt the data going to and from your device and the internet.

Types of VPN tunneling protocols
There are many types of VPN tunneling protocols that offer varying levels of security and other features. The most commonly used tunneling protocols in the VPN industry are PPTP, L2TP/IPSec, SSTP, and OpenVPN. Let’s take a closer look at them.

Point to Point Tunneling Protocol (PPTP) is one of the oldest protocols still being used by VPNs today. Developed by Microsoft and released with Windows 95, PPTP encrypts your data in packets and sends them through a tunnel it creates over your network connection.

PPTP is one of the easiest protocols to configure, requiring only a username, password, and server address to connect to the server. It’s one of the fastest VPN protocols because of its low encryption level.

While it boasts fast connection speeds, the low level of encryption makes PPTP one of the least secure protocols you can use to protect your data. With known vulnerabilities dating as far back as 1998, and the absence of strong encryption, you’ll want to avoid using this protocol if you need solid online security and anonymity – government agencies and authorities like the NSA have been able to compromise the protocol’s encryption.

2. L2TP/IPSec
Layer 2 Tunneling Protocol (L2TP) is used in conjunction with Internet Protocol Security (IPSec) to create a more secure tunneling protocol than PPTP. L2TP encapsulates the data, but isn’t adequately encrypted until IPSec wraps the data again with its own encryption to create two layers of encryption, securing the confidentiality of the data packets going through the tunnel.

L2TP/IPSec provides AES-256 bit encryption, one of the most advanced encryption standards that can be implemented. This double encapsulation does, however, make it a little slower than PPTP. It can also struggle with bypassing restrictive firewalls because it uses fixed ports, making VPN connections with L2TP easier to block. L2TP/IPSec is nonetheless a very popular protocol given the high level of security it provides.

Secure Socket Tunneling Protocol, named for its ability to transport internet data through the Secure Sockets Layer or SSL, is supported natively on Windows, making it easy for Windows users to set up this particular protocol. SSL makes internet data going through SSTP very secure, and because the port it uses isn’t fixed, it is less likely to struggle with firewalls than L2TP.

SSL is also used in conjunction with Transport Layer Security (TLS) on your web browsers to add a layer to the site you’re visiting to create a secure connection with your device. You can see this implemented whenever the website you visit starts with ‘https’ instead of ‘http’.

As a Windows-based tunneling protocol, SSTP is not available on any other operating system, and hasn’t been independently audited for potential backdoors built into the protocol.

4. OpenVPN
Saving the best for last, we have OpenVPN, a relatively recent open source tunneling protocol that uses AES 256-bit encryption to protect data packets. Because the protocol is open source, the code is vetted thoroughly and regularly by the security community, who are constantly looking for potential security flaws.

The protocol is configurable on Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS, although third-party software is required to set up the protocol, and the protocol can be hard to configure. After configuration, however, OpenVPN provides a strong and wide range of cryptographic algorithms that will allow users to keep their internet data secure and to even bypass firewalls at fast connection speeds.

Which tunneling protocol should I use?

Even though it’s the fastest, you should steer clear of PPTP if you want to keep your internet data secure. L2TP/IPSec provides 256-bit encryption but is slower and struggles with firewalls given its fixed ports. SSTP, while very secure, is only available on Windows, and closed off from security checks for built-in backdoors.

OpenVPN, with its open source code, strong encryption, and ability to bypass firewalls, is the best tunneling protocol to keep your internet data secure. While it requires third-party software that isn’t available on all operating systems, for the most secure VPN connection to the internet, you’ll want to use the OpenVPN protocol.

A good VPN service should offer you the choice of at least these four types of tunneling protocols when going online. We’ve compiled a list of the best VPNs in the industry for you to get started on protecting your internet data.




Source: Tech Radar


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