Email – what platform should I use and why? Free V Paid email…

Before you can decide which email type to use – you need to understand the differences between each one and the pros and cons related to each one

POP3

POP3 (Post Office Protocol, version 3) was the first major email protocol that was used in the early 1990s at the early years of the internet. A POP-based email service is simple: your email client (such as Outlook, Mac Mail, or Thunderbird) connects to the mail server and then downloads your emails directly to the computer. The downloaded email is then deleted from the server (though, most clients have a setting that can prevent this).

PROS:

  • Cheap – no licenses required – usually free
  • Supported by virtually all devices.
  • Simple to implement and configure.

CONS:

  • When a message is downloaded, it is removed from the server (if you save messages to the server, you may end up downloading the same email multiple times).
  • When a message is sent, there is no server copy.
  • If you access your mail on different devices, you’ll see different emails depending on what was downloaded to which device.
  • No way to organise your inbox. The inbox is your only folder.
  • Hasn’t had a major update since 1988.
  • Largely obsolete.

IMAP

IMAP (Internet Message Access Protocol) is the second major iteration of how people access their email – and also the most popular today. It has all the functions of POP3, but also has one major benefit that matters to most users: email syncing between multiple devices. This allows you to have the same email experience between devices because all your email (incoming and outgoing) are stored directly on the server, rather than downloaded directly to your computer. For this reason, IMAP replaced POP3 and has largely made it obsolete.

PROS:

  • Cheap – no licenses required.
  • Supported by virtually all devices.
  • Email syncing. All messages, including sent messages, are saved on the server.
  • Folder support to organize your inbox.
  • Compatibility: if your server supports IMAP, it most likely supports POP3.

CONS:

  • Easy to run out of inbox space if you never delete emails or have small storage.

 Hosted Microsoft Exchange and Office 365

Microsoft Exchange / Microsoft Office 365 is a proprietary platform developed by Microsoft. It requires the purchase of user or server licenses. Traditionally, it has been marketed to the Enterprise-level consumer and offers all the functionality of IMAP but also has other features to help businesses and organisations better collaborate among employees and staff. Features such as shared address books & calendars, shared file storage, and native integration with other Microsoft products like SharePoint and Office. Microsoft Office 365 – competes directly with Google Apps for Business – and is geared to make Enterprise-level functionality found in Exchange more cost-effective for small to medium-sized businesses.

PROS:

  • Email syncing – instead of downloading an email, a copy is created on your device while the original stays on the server.
  • Folder support to organize emails.
  • Sent messages are saved on the server.
  • Native integration with most Microsoft products.
  • Offers many collaborative tools to enable team members to share resources like calendars and documents.
  • Licenses can be purchased per-user.
  • Multiple aliases per mailbox
  • Ability to backup mailbox and restore to individual emails

CONS:

  • Can be expensive
  • Setup and maintenance requires specialized knowledge.

WHO SHOULD USE HOSTED EXCHANGE or MICROSOFT OFFICE 365?

  • If you want the benefits and functionality of Exchange server, but a more simple, streamlined experience.
  • If you want to avoid the licensing costs of a full Exchange server and only want to pay on a per-user basis.

WHICH ONE IS THE BEST CHOICE?

Your email is just as important as any of your other IT services, so you will want to make sure you’re getting the best value for money, as well as the best possible service. There are lots of free email options out on the market, but does it make sense to use them if you’re running a serious business?

BENEFITS OF PAID EMAIL SERVICES

Paying for an email service means that you can easily send emails through your own domain, so you can have a professional email address like yourname@yourdomain.com. It makes your company look professional, and make your service seem more credible. What’s more, it’s relatively easy to set up a basic email service, and many paid providers can automate the set up for you.

If you pay to host your email through private server hosting, or through a service like Google Apps or Office 365 then you will also get a more reliable service compared to free email hosting. You will also have dedicated customer service and support, plus the server you choose to host with most likely has higher security in place and email filtering to help reduce the amount of spam and viruses and malware you will receive.

Additionally, services like Office 365 offer extras such as cloud storage, and email access on the go, which can be particularly useful if you need to access your email remotely

WHY BOTHER WITH FREE SERVICES?

The big pro is that the service is free. And if you’re a small business who doesn’t rely heavily on emails to get in touch with clients or customers, then you can most likely get by for a while by using a free email client.

You don’t necessarily have to live with a @gmail.com or @hotmail.com domain either. Gmail easily lets you use their system to send emails from your own domain, however you need to have your domain set up to handle this. You can usually use the free email services that your DNS offers (usually limited to one free email address) to set up the initial server and then filter it through Gmail, Yahoo or whatever free service you want to use.

However, these free services aren’t as secure so are more open to hacking, and you’ll have to live with adverts in and around your emails. What’s more, if you’re on a free service, then your email may not be routed with priority, meaning that you may not experience an instantaneous conversation.

PRICING AND SERVICES

If you’re a small business, the attraction of a free email service might be the fact that you don’t have to deal with the cost of running an email server. However, it can cost very little to host email. Some private servers can cost a few pounds a month, and full packages such as Google Apps or Office 365 cost between £3 and £7 per month for a basic package. So cost should never be a factor when it comes to ensuring the best email service for your company!

Contact us for a quote for any of the Microsoft Hosted Exchange or Office 365 services.

Shame, confusion among office workers spur record numbers to give in to ransomware

Posted by : https://businessinsights.bitdefender.com/shame-confusion-among-office-workers-spur-record-numbers-to-give-in-to-ransomware

By Filip Truta on Nov 03, 2017

Despite considerable efforts to educate employees on ransomware, many organizations still don’t know what to do if they fall victim to an attack. According to part 2 of Intermedia’s Data Vulnerability Report, a record number of employees and their employers are paying ransom.

Intermedia examined the security habits of more than 1,000 office workers and found that many employees draw a blank when they fall victim to ransomware. About a third admit they aren’t even familiar with ransomware.

“This lack of awareness, paired with massive global attacks such as WannaCry and Petya (and new strains popping up all the time like Bad Rabbit), is resulting in both employees and employers paying ransoms in record numbers,” according to the report.

Although 70% of office workers say their organization regularly communicates about cyber threats, employees aren’t always told what exactly to do if hackers seize their computer. Because of this, employees hit by ransomware sometimes take matters into their own hands, which can dramatically undermine their organizations’ security efforts.

In fact, the study shockingly reveals that employees shoulder the costs of ransomware payments more often than their employers – 59% paid the ransom personally, and 37% said their employers handled the payment.

In organizations where WannaCry was named as part of the cybersecurity training, as many as 69% of employees paid a ransom themselves. Intermedia suggests shame, as well as lack of knowledge, may drive employees to pay ransom themselves.

Other findings include:

  • Over 73% of Millennial workers affected by ransomware report paying a work-related ransom
  • 68% of impacted owners / executive management said they personally paid a work-related ransom
  • Small and medium-sized businesses are particularly vulnerable to ransomware attacks as they lack the resources, tools and/or training that larger organizations use to recognize, prevent and protect themselves
  • Ransom paid by office workers averages $1,400
  • Growth in ransomware attacks is directly linked to the increased willingness of victims to cough up ransom money

To mitigate the risk of falling victim to a ransomware attack, companies would be smart to employ a proven enterprise security solution trained in sniffing out not just ransomware, but any kind of malware.

Regular backups are also a good idea. In case of an attack, organizations can restore from backup with little or no harm to their operations and, ultimately, their bottom line.

With ransomware damage costs predicted to exceed $5 billion in 2017 (up from $325 million in 2015), and the General Data Protection Regulation just around the corner, doing nothing is no longer an option – neither for big corporations nor for small businesses.

Hackers Distribute Malware-Infected Media Player to Hundreds of Mac Users

Yet another software supply-chain attack hits popular applications.
Lucian Constantin
Oct 20 2017, 3:52pm
https://motherboard.vice.com/en_us/article/bj789w/elmedia-player-malware-hack-mac-trojan

Hackers managed to compromise the website of a company that develops several popular apps for Apple computers, distributing malware-infected versions of those apps to hundreds of users. Security researchers from antivirus firm ESET reported Friday that the free version of Elmedia Player distributed from Eltima Software’s website contained a macOS information stealing trojan known as OSX/Proton. The same malware was distributed earlier this year through another trojanized version of a popular macOS application called HandBrake.

Eltima told me in an email that hackers also managed to trojanize one of the company’s other applications, an internet download manager called Folx that also acts as a BitTorrent client. The Proton malware is capable of stealing a lot of data from infected computers including history, cookies, bookmarks, and log-in data from browsers; cryptocurrency wallets; SSH authentication keys; macOS keychain data; Tunnelblick VPN configuration data; PGP encryption keys and data stored in 1Password, a password management application.

Elmedia Player has 1 million users as of August, according to Eltima. The company provides free and paid versions of its software programs and distributes them through its website and through the Mac App Store. Only the installers for Elmedia Player and Folx downloaded by users from the company’s website contained the Proton trojan, an Eltima spokeswoman told me. “The built-in automatic update mechanism [of the applications] seems to be unaffected.”

The security breach happened Thursday and was discovered relatively fast by ESET who reported the incident to the software developer. The malicious installers were available on Eltima’s website for around 24 hours and were downloaded by almost 1,000 users. “Users who downloaded and executed the software on October 19 before 3:15 PM EDT, are likely compromised,” the ESET researchers said. On Friday morning, Eltima announced that both apps are now “safe to install and malware-free.”

The attackers don’t appear to have compromised the company’s development infrastructure, as happened recently with the developer of a Windows application called CCleaner. Instead, the hackers just managed to hack into Eltima’s website through a vulnerability in a JavaScript-based library called TinyMCE. The malicious installers were not digitally signed with Eltima’s Apple developer certificate, but with a different developer ID under the name Clifton Grimm. It’s not clear if this certificate was obtained from Apple by using a fake identity or if it was stolen from another developer. Gatekeeper, Apple’s first line of defense against malware, allows signed binaries to execute without warning by default, Patrick Wardle, director of research at Synack and a macOS security expert, told me in a Twitter direct message. Because of this, most Mac malware is now signed with stolen or fraudulently obtained Apple developer IDs, with the latter being much more likely, he said. “It appears Apple has a problem with ensuring only legitimate developer IDs are given out,” Wardle said.

Apple revoked the misused Clifton Grimm certificate after being alerted by ESET and Eltima, but users who downloaded and executed the rogue Elmedia Player and Folx installers before this happened didn’t get a Gatekeeper warning. At installation, Proton displays a fake password authorization window in order to gain system administrator privileges. It’s not unusual for legitimate applications to request such access, so users might easily be tricked into inputting their password. There is some evidence that this new attack might have been perpetrated by the same attackers who compromised a legitimate download server for the HandBrake video converter application in May and distributed a malicious version of that program to macOS users.

In both cases, the trojanized installers infected computers with Proton and in both cases the malware’s command-and-control servers used domain names similar to those of the compromised software. The difference is that the rogue HandBrake installer was not digitally signed, meaning that users would have had to override Gatekeeper manually in order to install it.

To determine if they’ve been infected users can search their systems for the presence of the following files or directories: /tmp/Updater.app/, /Library/LaunchAgents/com.Eltima.UpdaterAgent.plist, /Library/.rand/ and /Library/.rand/updateragent.app/. If any of them exist, Proton was installed, according to ESET.

“As with any compromise with an administrator account, a full OS reinstall is the only sure way to get rid of the malware,” the ESET researchers said. “Victims should also assume that the secrets outlined in the previous section are compromised and take appropriate measures to invalidate them.”

Software supply-chain attacks pose a very serious danger because they abuse the existing trust relationship between users and software developers. These attacks can happen in several ways and can be very hard to detect and prevent. Attackers recently managed to distribute infected versions of CCleaner—a Windows system optimization tool—to over 2.2 million users after hacking into the program developer’s infrastructure. Last year, attackers hacked into the website of popular open-source Transmission BitTorrent client on two separate occasions and distributed infected installers to macOS users.

In order to compromise Macs, attackers need a way to get malicious applications onto them, and hacking into a legitimate developer’s website to surreptitiously trojanize a popular app is a great way to achieve this, Wardle said. We’ve seen attackers use this mechanism before, so it won’t be surprising if they continue to rely on this attack vector, he said.

KRACK attacks – is your Wi-Fi at risk ?

Here’s what its all about and what to do

The latest bug to hit with its own logo called the KRACK Attack. KRACK attacks mean that most encrypted Wi-Fi networks are not as secure as you think.
KRACK works against networks using WPA and WPA2 encryption, which these days covers most wireless access points where encryption has been turned on.
An attacker within Wi-Fi range could, in theory, sniff out some of the encrypted traffic sent to some of the computers in your organisation or home. Even if an attacker can only “bleed off” small amounts of traffic, in dribs and drabs, the end result could be very serious.

KRACK explained

KRACK is short for Key Reinstallation Attack, which is a curious name that probably leaves you as confused as we felt when we heard about it, so here’s our extremely simplified explanation of what happens (please note this explanation covers just one of numerous flavours of similar attack). At various times during an encrypted wireless connection, you (the client) and the access point (the AP) need to agree on security keys.
To do so, a protocol known as the “four-way handshake” is used, which goes something like this:
(AP to client) Let’s agree on a session key. Here’s some one-time random data to help compute it.
(Client to AP) OK, here’s some one-time random data from me to use as well.
At this point, both sides can mix together the Wi-Fi network password (the so-called Pre-Shared Key or PSK) and the two random blobs of data to generate a one-time key for this session.
This avoids using the PSK directly in encrypting wireless data, and ensures a unique key for each session.
(AP to client) I’m confirming we’ve agreed on enough data to construct a key for this session.
(Client to AP) You’re right, we have.

The KRACK Attacks (with numerous variations) use the fact that although this four-way protocol was shown to be mathematically sound, it could be – and in many cases, was – implemented insecurely. In particular, an attacker with a rogue access point that pretends to have the same network number (MAC address) as the real one can divert message 4 and prevent it reaching the real AP. During this hiatus in the handshake, the client may already have started communicating with the AP, because the two sides already have a session key they can use, albeit that they haven’t finalised the handshake. This means that the client will already be churning out cryptographic material, known as the keystream, to encrypt the data it transmits.

To ensure a keystream that never repeats, the client uses the session key plus a nonce, or “number used once”, to encrypt each network frame; the nonce is incremented after each frame so that the keystream is different each time. As far as we can determine, all the KRACK attacks involve reused keystream material accessed by “rewinding” crypto settings and thus encrypting different data with the same keystream. If you know one set of data you can figure out the other – that’s the best case; some cases are worse than that because you can as good as take over the connection both ways.

Back to the handshake

At some point, the real AP will send another copy of message 3, possibly several times, until the rogue AP finally lets the message get through to the client.
The mathematical certainty in the protocol now meets cryptographic sloppiness in its implementation.
The client finalises the handshake at last, and resets its keystream by “reinstalling” the session key (thus the name of the attack), and resetting the nonce to what it was immediately after stage 2 of the handshake.
This means the keystream starts repeating itself – and re-using the keystream in a network encryption cipher of this sort is a big no-no.
If you know the contents of the network frames that were encrypted the first time, you can recover the keystream used to encrypt them; if you have the keystream from the first bunch of network frames, you can use it to decrypt the frames encrypted the second time when the keystream gets re-used.
Even if attackers are only able to recover a few frames of the data in any session, they still come out ahead.
Gold dust sounds less valuable than a gold ingot – but if you collect enough gold dust, you get to the same value in the end.

What to do

Changing your Wi-Fi password won’t help: this attack doesn’t recover the password (PSK) itself, but instead allows an attacker to decrypt some of the content of some sessions.
Changing routers probably won’t help either, because there are numerous variants of the KRACK Attacks that affect most Wi-Fi software implementations in most operating systems.

Here’s what you can do:

Until further notice, treat all Wi-Fi networks like coffee shops with open, unencrypted, wireless.
Stick to HTTPS websites so your web browsing is encrypted even if it travels over an unencrypted connection.
Consider using a VPN, which means that all your network traffic (not just your web browsing) is encrypted, from your laptop or mobile device to your home or work network, even if it travels over an unencrypted connection along the way.

Apply KRACK patches for your clients (and access points) as soon as they are available.

Simply put, if you ever use open Wi-Fi access points (or Wi-Fi access points where the password is widely known, e.g. printed on the menu or handed out by the barista), you are already living in a world where at least some of your network traffic could be sniffed out at will by anyone. The precautions that you take in those cases – why not take them all the time? If you always encrypt everything yourself, in a way that you get to choose and can control, you never have to worry what you might have forgotten about.

 

Unifi Networks were one of the first to release patches for their routers and firewalls – if you are interested in upgrading your wireless network to Unifi Enterprise grade – speak to me http://prpcs.co.uk/services/wifi-optimisation

Is Antivirus Necessary in the World of Mac?

credit : https://www.macworld.com/article/3230164/antivirus-software/is-antivirus-necessary-in-the-world-of-mac.html

The misconception that only Windows OS computers need antivirus protection is just that—a misconception.

The last decade has served up plenty of lessons around taking digital security too lightly. For years, threats targeting the Windows operating system have grabbed the headlines, leaving the impression that other operating systems are immune to commercial, opportunistic threats.

The modern Mac OS is based on a solid architecture, with built-in security features that do a pretty good job fending off malware. But the explosive growth of the web and our dependence on cloud services has changed the security landscape completely. Platform-focused threats are now complemented by web-borne attacks trying to gain control of your cloud services.

On the malware side, while it’s true that Windows computers are more susceptible to attacks due to their popularity, the increase in malware families specifically designed for Mac is higher in 2017 than in the previous five years combined. Security experts – and sometimes Apple – warn Mac users not to rely on the operating system for security alone, as prevention is always the wiser approach.

Cyber criminals are getting better at hiding malware from users and security agents. They’re not in it for the notoriety, like they used to be in the good old days. Now they are in it for the money. Hackers are no longer writing poor-quality malware, but instead designing hostile, complex, malicious software programs which takes advantage of users’ blind spots to sneak in, by either working around the operating system defenses, or by tricking the user into voluntarily installing them.

Some of the notorious threats that have taken Mac users by surprise are CoinThief, a Mac Trojan that goes for Bitcoin wallets after infiltrating computers, or the devastating Flashback Trojan that infected more than 600,000 devices worldwide. And new threats, such as ransomware, are being perfected as we speak, designed to extort money from victims all over the globe. In March 2016 Apple had to fight KeRanger, the first ransomware designed for Mac.

Before you hit the road, fasten your digital seatbelt

When talking about online security, one of the most important misconceptions is that anti-virus programs only protect against known viruses, and the number of such viruses is so small that you should hardly bother. In reality, an anti-malware solution designed for Macs cover all the attack avenues: They include anti-phishing, anti-adware, anti-spyware, anti-ransomware, and other layers of security to keep your Mac running only the software or apps that you have authorized.

Modern threats targeting Macs are silent: they can run in the background for years without showing any sign of trouble. Aggressive adware that stealthily profiles you and casually serves banners might not look like a big deal for the uninformed—but they leak out your private information, from browser habits to contacts or browsing history, without you even knowing. Other websites take advantage of your processing power and silently use it to mine digital currency at the expense of your computer’s performance and reliability. This, in turn, wears down your hardware and increases your electricity bill.

Are all security solutions made equal?

If you’re concerned about the security of your Mac device and want to get an anti-malware solution installed, make sure you don’t fall into a trap. Fake malware protection applications are out there for all platforms, from Android to Windows to Mac.

Choose a security solution that provides certified 100% detection, such as  the BitDefender GravityZone .

Speak to me about a quote for BitDefender GravityZone for all your Mac or Windows devices.

The new macOS, High Sierra is now available

Apple’s new Operating System, High Sierra is now available and ready to install on your Mac. Here’s how you go about it.

Before starting, make sure uou have backed up your Mac. Run Time Machine or your online backup service if you have one.
The entire process will take around an hour, depending on your internet connection speed.

Got that? Right, you’re ready to go.

  • Fire up the App Store app, located in your Applications folder.

  • Look for macOS High Sierra in the App Store – you will probably find it in the top marquee carousel. once you locate it, click on it.
  • This should bring you to the High Sierra section of the App Store, and you can read Apple’s description of the new OS there.
  • When you’re ready to start, click the Download button at left side of the display.
  • Downloading will take a while as its over 5GB.
  • Once the download completes, the installer will launch automatically.
  • If you wish to install later, you can quit at this stage by pressing Command-Q. It will be saved to your Applications folder.
  • If you wish to proceed and install now, click continue.
  • Read the software license agreement and click Agree.
  • Select your Mac’s startup drive and click Install.

 

  • Enter your username and password for the new “helper tool” that the installer wants to install, and click Add Helper.
  • The Mac will then need to restart, so click Restart.
  • Any applications that are open will need to be closed. Click Close Applications.
  • Your Mac will restart and proceed with the installation.
  • When it’s done, you’ll have High Sierra on your Mac.

Why iCloud, Google Drive, and Dropbox Can’t Truly Protect Your Data

Today, most people understand cloud applications and cloud computing, but some still question the differences between a cloud backup solution, like Acronis, and cloud storage services, such as iCloud, Google Drive, and Dropbox. In some cases, the providers of the latter three products advertise their services as a backup solution. In other cases, consumers believe that anytime they store data in the cloud, it’s always protected in the event of loss. Let’s set the record straight when it comes to online backup vs. cloud storage services!

How Are Cloud Storage Services Different From Backup Software?

To start, take a look at the definitions of the different types of cloud storage services available today:

1. iCloud is a cloud solution from Apple Computer Inc. that provides cloud storage and apps for Apple desktop, tablet, and mobile devices. It includes the ability to store documents, videos, photos, music and other data online, and users can synchronize it between iOS-powered devices. Here you can also view iCloud Photos shared between different devices.

2. Google Drive is a personal cloud storage service from Google that lets users store and synchronize digital content across computers, laptops and mobile devices, including Android-powered tablet and smartphone devices. If you delete a file — whether intentionally or by accident — it’s gone.

3. Dropbox is a cloud storage service that enables users to store files on remote cloud servers with the ability to share files within a synchronized format.

The bottom line is that iCloud, Google Drive, and Dropbox are designed for cloud storage with the primary objective of synchronizing data between devices so that documents, videos, photos, and music can be accessed and shared – and they do a good job at this.

For example, you may use your iPhone to take pictures but want to view these pictures on your iPad. You can use iCloud, Google Drive, or Dropbox, which store the pictures that are on your iPhone in the cloud. Then, you can access and view the pictures that are stored in the cloud using your iPad.

While Google Drive and Dropbox are not advertised as backup solutions, Apple does advertise iCloud as a backup solution. However, iCloud can only back up your mobile device and only some of the data on your Mac computer.

On the other hand, cloud backup software (also called online backup) protects data and systems in the event of file loss or deletion, stolen or lost devices, mishaps and disasters. Unlike public cloud storage services, today’s more complete backup solutions can back up everything to both the cloud and local disks and drives. This includes pictures, videos, documents, contacts, calendars, reminders, even an entire computer. You can restore a new device in a matter of minutes and be totally back up, running, and on the go — something that no public cloud storage service can do.

3 Ways Cloud Backup Solutions Provide More Protection Than Cloud Storage Services

Below are three ways that online backup solutions provide more protection and broader features than public cloud storage services:

1. Protects your entire PC or Mac computer — includes the operating system, applications, data, preferences, history, etc. — a full disk image backup protects everything on your computer. And you can restore everything to a new computer quickly.

2. Preserves all your mobile device content – includes pictures, videos, contacts, and events on your iPhones, iPads, and Android devices.

3. Manages all computers and devices from one place – backup and restore all your PCs, laptops, and mobile devices from a single online dashboard. Replace and restore devices any time from any place. This is great for families and households with multiple computers and mobile devices to look after.

Acronis True Image has been backing up computers for millions of people for more than 10 years. The latest Acronis True Image Cloud solution protects your entire digital life, and our latest release now includes support for mobile devices, unlimited cloud storage and personal archiving, and the ability to manage all computers and devices from a single online dashboard.

PR PC Support now authorised cloud based solutions reseller

PR PC Support are now an authorised reseller of a range of cloud based solutions to assist our clients to protect their data, computers and email.

In our arsenal of solutions are:

  • Office 365 – All versions of Microsoft’s popular cloud based office and email solution
  • Acronis Backup Cloud – Trusted solution from a world leader in Backup Solutions – Secure and reliable cloud backup tailored to meet your requirements
  • BitDefender Gravity Zone – Award winning Anti-Virus / Anti-Malware & Anti-Ransomware that consistently offers superior protection, performance, and usability –  proven in major independent tests
  • Hosted Exchange email – scalable hosted mail boxes complete with free email signatures with each mailbox
  • Email Security & Archiving for hosted Exchange and on premises Exchange Servers
  • Cirius Secure Email Messaging – send and receive secure email from within your email client

Please get in touch if you want to protect your data with our online backup tools, protect your computers with our online security tools or want to upgrade or migrate your email to one of our email services.

The new iPhone X and iPhone 8

Apple has released it’s iPhone X (10) – the new premium smartphone costing more than £999. The device showcases the latest technology, including an edge-to-edge OLED display, wireless charging and facial recognition security. Apple also revealed two other phones that upgrade its current range, the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus.

So what do you need to know about Apple’s new flagship product.

https://www.apple.com/uk/iphone/compare

iPhone X
5.8-inch Super Retina HD display with HDR and True Tone2
All-glass and stainless steel design, water and dust resistant
12MP dual cameras with Portrait mode, Portrait Lighting (beta) and 4K video up to 60 fps
7MP TrueDepth front camera with Portrait mode and Portrait Lighting
Face ID for secure authentication and Apple Pay
A11 Bionic, the most powerful and smartest chip in an iPhone
Wireless charging (works with Qi chargers3)

iPhone 8 Plus
5.5-inch Retina HD display with True Tone
All-glass and aluminium design, water and dust resistant
12MP dual cameras with Portrait mode, Portrait Lighting (beta) and 4K video up to 60 fps
7MP FaceTime HD camera with Retina Flash for stunning selfies
Touch ID for secure authentication and Apple Pay
A11 Bionic, the most powerful and smartest chip in an iPhone
Wireless charging (works with Qi chargers3)

iPhone 8
4.7-inch Retina HD display with True Tone
All-glass and aluminium design, water and dust resistant
12MP camera with 4K video up to 60 fps
7MP FaceTime HD camera with Retina Flash for stunning selfies
Touch ID for secure authentication and Apple Pay
A11 Bionic, the most powerful and smartest chip in an iPhone
Wireless charging (works with Qi chargers3)

 

iPhone X

Price and release date

Apple are set to release two versions, a 64GB version, which will start at £999, and a more expensive 256GB version for £1,149 – the first smartphone to break the £1000 barrier. It won’t be available until later this year. The iPhone X will be available for pre-orders on October 27 and be released generally on November 3.

What does the iPhone X look like?

The iPhone X has a 5.8-inch screen squeezed into a body smaller than the iPhone 8 Plus. Apples goal has been to create “an iPhone that is all display”.
They have dropped the iPhone’s iconic home button, which has been present on every device since the first iPhone released in 2007. It has also removed the front-facing fingerprint scanner, which has been adopted by plenty of other leading brands. Instead, the new iPhone X has a nearly bezel-free design with the screen covering almost the entire front of the phone. To make room for the front-facing selfie camera and facial recognition, the screen has a slight notch that indents at the top. It has a dual-lens rear facing camera and will come in the colours silver and space grey.

iPhone X best features

No home button (or Touch ID)

Prehaps more controversial than a best feature, Apple has done away with the home button, which was used to control many aspects of the iPhone, including unlocking it with the embedded fingerprint scanner. Instead, the iPhone X uses gesture controls to unlock. Several functions of the home button, such as activating Siri, will be relocated to the lock switch. Users can control the phone through swiping up from the bottom or just by tapping the screen.

Face ID

Apple’s TrueDepth camera system lets users to unlock their phone by simply looking at it. Facial recognition technology replaces Touch ID as a way to identify users through an infrared camera. Face ID will only unlock if a users eyes are open. Apple said there is a “one in a million” chance that someone else could unlock the iPhone using the technology. Face ID will also work with Apple Pay, and other apps that work with Touch ID.

Wireless charging

The iPhone X is the first iPhone to come with wireless charging, which is already available on the Apple Watch and Samsung Galaxy S8. Apple will also release a wireless charging pad next year , called the AirPower, that will be able to charge multiple devices at once.

Edge-to-edge, super retina display

Apple have long made it his goal to create an iPhone that looked like a single sheet of glass. The iPhone X has realised this design, with a 5.8-inch edge-to-edge display that covers the entire front of the phone, save for a tiny notch at the top. It will have a 2438×1125 resolution display with 458 pixels per inch and an OLED display.

Augmented reality

The iPhone X has been used to showcase some of the augmented reality experiences that Apple debuted with its ARKit software, released at this year’s WWDC. Augmented reality allows iPhone users to superimpose virtual images, games and videos onto real world objects and is a field where Apple has truly taken the initiative from rivals such as Google. The X can also use 3D tracking capabilities from its selfie camera to impose masks using AR for apps such as Snapchat.

Animoji

Animoji are a new form of moving emoji that can be customised using facial recognition software. Users can scan their face and the animoji will match their expression in a short animation. The feature will only be available on the premium iPhone X, as it requires the 3D camera. Apple has created a limited selection of animoji from its hundreds of emoji, including the monkey, unicorn, robot, dog, pig, cat, dog and pile of poo.

Processor and battery

The iPhone X will be an A11 bionic chip, a more powerful chip than the one found on the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus. According to Apple , the iPhone X will also provide two more hours of battery life than the iPhone 7.

Dual camera

The iPhone X will follow the iPhone 7 Plus and have a 12MP dual lens camera, but it will also be kitted out for augmented reality. The selfie camera will be 7MP and also be able to function for 3D tracking.

What about the iPhone 8?

Alongside the premium iPhone X, Apple also unveiled the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus.
Key features | iPhone 8 and 8 Plus

The new gold finish APPLE
Silver, space grey, new gold finish
Apple claims it’s the most durable glass ever in a smartphone
water and dust resistant
4.7″ display in the 8 and 5.5″ display in the Plus
Stereo speakers. 25% louder than the speakers in the 7
A11 bionic chip
12MP camera
4K 60fps video
Cameras calibrated for augmented reality
New Portrait Lighting feature: machine learning creates facial landmarks and enhances light effects on the face (8Plus)
Wireless charging
Pre order on September 15, available on September 22
iOS 11 available on September 19
64GB and 256GB
iPhone 8: £649 for 64GB, £849 for 256GB
iPhone 8 Plus: £749 for 64GB, £949 for 256GB

Design and appearance

The iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus are similar in appearance to the current iPhone 7 and 7 Plus. The smaller version has a 4.7-inch screen, while the larger phone has a 5.5-inch screen and a dual camera lens on the back. Apple says the processor, the A11 Bionic, is “the most powerful and smartest chip ever in a smartphone”. There will be glass on the front and the back of the device, “reinforced by a laser welded steel and copper”. It will be water and dust resistant sealed. Both models will have a HD retina display and feature a 12MP camera.

What colours can i get it in?

The iPhone 8 will be available in silver, space grey and a new blush gold colour.

When do the iPhone 8’s go on sale?

The iPhone 8 will go on sale on 22/09/17. You can pre-order the new device from 15 September. iOS 11 will be available to download from 19 September.

How much will they cost?

The will cost £699 for the 64GB version, and the 8 Plus will start from £799 (64GB). 256GB versions will also be available.

iPhone 8 and 8 Plus best features

Wireless charging

Like the iPhone X, the two iPhone 8’s will come with wireless charging capabilities. This means the phone can be charged by simply placing it on a power pad. It is the first time the technology has come to the iPhone range.

iOS 11

The new iPhones will come with Apple’s new operating system iOS 11. iOS 11 includes hundreds of new features like a redesigned control centre, better multitasking, improvements to the camera, peer-to-peer Apple Pay and new safety features.

Dual camera

The iPhone 8 Plus will have a 12MP dual-lens camera, similar to the one featured on the iPhone 7 Plus released last year. It features a larger and faster sensor, a new colour filter and deeper pixels.

Video

Apple claims the new camera delivers “the highest quality video capture ever in a smartphone” with better video stabilisation and 4K video up to 60fps.

Home button

While the demise of the home button and Touch ID on the iPhone X has been in the news, the iPhone 8 will maintain the button and Touch ID. It won’t, however, have facial recognition.

The new MAC OS, High Sierra is coming…. is your Mac ready ?

The new macOS High Sierra is coming and there are a few things you should know:

  • First, what are the installation requirements?
  • Second, how can you prepare your Mac for macOS High Sierra?

Macs that are compatible with the new OS release

Hardware and Software requirements :

  • OS X Mountain Lion 10.8 or higher
  • 4 GB (preferably 8 GB) of RAM
  • 20 GB of free space on drive

This is what Apple have to say about the new OS

Get a boost with new technologies.

macOS High Sierra introduces new core technologies that improve the most important functions of your Mac. From re-architecting how it stores your data to improving how you watch videos to unleashing the full power of the graphics processors, it’s all central to today’s Mac experience.

Apple File System – Your data is under new management.

Your documents. Your photos. Your mail. Your apps. To your Mac, everything you care about is data. And a file system is what organises all that data into files and folders you can access with a click. Our current file system was designed in the early days of Mac, and it has performed beautifully ever since. But today’s flash‑based Mac opens up new possibilities for innovation, so it’s time to lay a new foundation. With macOS High Sierra, we’re introducing the Apple File System to Mac, with an advanced architecture that brings a new level of security and responsiveness.
Advanced. A new 64-bit architecture is designed for today’s flash technology and ready for tomorrow’s new storage capabilities.
Responsive. Designed to make common tasks like duplicating a file and finding the size of a folder’s contents happen instantly.
Safe and secure. Enjoy even more peace of mind with built‑in encryption, crash‑safe protections and simplified data backup on the go.

HEVC. The new standard for video.

With the rising popularity of 4K video, a new industry standard arrives on Mac — HEVC (High Efficiency Video Coding, also known as H.265).1 It can compress video up to 40 per cent more than H.264, the current standard for video compression. Using HEVC, videos stream better and take up less space on your Mac, while preserving the same visual quality.2
Up to 40% better compression

Metal 2. A graphics game changer.

Today’s Mac experience relies more than ever on the graphics processor (GPU) in your computer. And GPUs are becoming more and more powerful. Metal is a technology built into macOS that allows apps to unleash the full power of the GPU. Now Metal 2 not only takes the visual experience to the next level, but also adds capabilities like machine learning, virtual reality and external GPU support for entertainment and professional creative apps. Whether you play games, create content or develop software, Metal 2 provides the power to bring your imagination to life.

Virtual reality for Mac. It’s a whole new world.

macOS High Sierra lets developers create interactive virtual reality experiences on Mac for the first time, using the new iMac with Retina 5K display, the new iMac Pro coming in late 2017, or any supported Mac paired with an external GPU.3 Along with optimised support for Valve’s SteamVR and the HTC Vive VR headset, and content creation apps like Final Cut Pro X, Epic Unreal 4 Editor and Unity Editor, developers will have everything they need to create immersive new worlds for you to explore.

Your favourite apps and features get a boost too.

Navigate, organise and edit your photos like never before with new features in the Photos app. Tailor your web browsing experience in Safari. Find what you’re looking for even faster in your Mail inbox. macOS High Sierra makes a great experience even greater.

Photos. More ways to edit. More ways to organise. More ways to wow.
People love working with their photos on a Mac. So for macOS High Sierra, we focused on giving you new tools that make using your library more efficient and fun.
An expanded sidebar. At the centre of everything. Quickly find what you’re looking for with the always on sidebar. An expanded Import view shows all of your past imports in chronological order, so you can go straight to last month’s holiday photos. And the albums you make are always where you can see them.
Now you can organise your photos in a flash. Instantly filter photo collections by your favourite criteria. A new selection counter keeps track of what you’ve selected, and lets you drag and drop collected images into an album or export them to the desktop. You can also rotate and favourite batches of images straight from the toolbar.

Perfect your best shots with advanced editing tools.

Easily make sophisticated contrast and colour adjustments to your photos with powerful tools like Curves for fine‑tuning and Selective Color to make any colour more saturated. And new, professionally inspired filters let you quickly give your pictures a distinctive look.
Bring even more life to your Live Photos. When editing a Live Photo, try the new Loop effect to turn it into a looping video that you can experience again and again. Try Bounce to play the action forward and backward. Or choose Long Exposure for a beautiful DSLR like effect to blur water or extend light trails. You can also trim, mute and select a key photo for each Live Photo.

Relive your favourite moments with new Memories.

macOS High Sierra introduces more than a dozen new Memories categories — including pets, babies, outdoor activities, performances, weddings, birthdays and sporting events — for even more personal and meaningful moments. The People album gets even better with faces. Easily find your favourite subjects in the People album with larger image thumbnails and more accurate groupings. And when you use iCloud Photo Library, your album stays up to date on all your devices.
More ways to work with third party apps. Open a picture in a third party photo editing app like Photoshop or Pixelmator directly from Photos, and your edits will automatically be saved in your Photos library. You can also download third party projects extensions from the Mac App Store that let you order framed prints, create web pages and more, straight from the Photos app.

The features you love.
Now with more to love.