Software & Apps News - Page 2
WhatsApp might have fixed the problem of dead chats
You don't need to be a heavy WhatsApp user to have too many dead chats hanging around and now the instant messaging platform seems to be working on fixing that.
Dead chats are group chats that you joined for whatever reason but no longer need. Those chats could be set up to organize a work night out for example. And once they're done, they're done. WhatsApp is reported to be working on a feature that will make those chats easier to clean up when they're no longer useful
The feature, dubbed expiring chats, is now available in the latest version of WhatsApp that's available to beta testers via TestFlight. That means that those of us who have the shipping version of WhatsApp can't make use of the feature just yet, but that will hopefully change soon enough.
Continue reading: WhatsApp might have fixed the problem of dead chats (full post)
WhatsApp is finally getting a proper tablet interface on Android
WhatsApp is reportedly working on an updated Android app that will make it right at home on tablets.
The current Android version of WhatsApp isn't optimized for use on tablets, especially larger ones. However, a new report has WhatsApp testing a new version with beta testers that would make use of a new two-pane interface.
The new beta was first reported by WABetaInfo and is current;y being tested in beta form, but will likely be made available to the public in due course.
Continue reading: WhatsApp is finally getting a proper tablet interface on Android (full post)
Microsoft evicts Bing AI chatbot from the Windows 11 taskbar
Windows 11's recent big update, less than a week ago, brought the Bing chatbot to the taskbar - but the AI has just been unceremoniously ejected from the interface (at least for the time being).
Microsoft removed the ChatGPT-powered AI without any notification or reason why the chatbot was given its marching orders, as MS Power User observed.
So, we're left scratching our heads a bit about what has happened here. Although it was something of a surprise to see Bing appear at the foot of the Windows 11 desktop in the first place, given that it wasn't tested in preview first.
Continue reading: Microsoft evicts Bing AI chatbot from the Windows 11 taskbar (full post)
Microsoft is kinda sorta bringing iMessage to Windows
The idea of Apple ever making it easy for anyone to send and receive iMessages from their Windows-powered PC seems incredible, but that hasn't stopped Microsoft from trying to make it happen.
A new beta version of the Phone Link app finally supports iPhones, and yes, send and receive iMessages. But that doesn't mean that it works well. Or that there are any guarantees that it'll work for much longer once Apple gets wind of what's going on.
Right now the version of Phone Link that's available to Windows Insiders does indeed include iPHone support, and it can send and receive iMessages thanks to a Bluetooth connection between PC and iPhone. There is even support for making and receiving calls, and phone notifications can also be seen from that Windows PC.
Continue reading: Microsoft is kinda sorta bringing iMessage to Windows (full post)
Windows 11 invites Bing chatbot to make itself at home on your taskbar
Windows 11 just received a major update that puts the Bing AI chatbot onto the taskbar, among other big changes.
This is essentially the return of the search box on the taskbar - which was replaced by a more compact button in Windows 11 - except now when you're typing queries, you'll be enlisting the help of the ChatGPT-powered Bing to assist you.
Only those who have signed up for the preview of the 'new Bing' (as it's called formally by Microsoft) will have access to the AI, mind you, providing they have also installed this new Windows 11 update.
Continue reading: Windows 11 invites Bing chatbot to make itself at home on your taskbar (full post)
Windows 11 may eventually get an option to tidy up the system tray
Windows 11 users might eventually get the ability to declutter the taskbar somewhat, or more specifically, the system tray at the far-right end of the bar.
As spotted by known Windows leaker PhantomOfEarth on Twitter, Microsoft could be working on a feature to allow users to turn off the clock display (date/time) in the system tray.
Or at least some hidden code points to the existence of such functionality, even if it hasn't yet been enabled in testing - these nuggets were uncovered in preview build 25300 of Windows 11 (which was recently released).
Continue reading: Windows 11 may eventually get an option to tidy up the system tray (full post)
New WhatsApp feature will let iPhone users edit messages after they're sent
As part of Apple's iOS 16 update, it introduced the ability for users to edit recently sent messages on the iMessage platform as a nice little feature for those of us that put too much faith in autocorrect. It set a 15-minute time limit, but it proved to be a very welcome addition, in addition to reducing the need to send a quick follow-up message correcting that the word 'boobs' was actually 'books.' Like, "I want to borrow a few books."
And now it looks like WhatsApp is adding the edit feature, as it has been spotted in a new beta via wabetainfo.com. As per the screenshot, an edited message gets an 'edited' tag - which is excellent, and like the Apple version of the editing feature, users will be limited to a 15-minute window to make any changes.
As the first version of the editing feature, it's limited to messages, though editing image and video captions and documents are expected before release. Or further down the line.
Continue reading: New WhatsApp feature will let iPhone users edit messages after they're sent (full post)
Windows 11 adding an option to 'End Task' with a simple right-click
If you've been using your PC to play games, you'll no doubt have dealt with an unresponsive app where you need to open up the Task Manager, find the process, and kill it via the 'End Task' function. It's just a part of the process of playing games, and for many PC gamers, Task Manager is used exclusively for this one, well, task.
The only issue is that you're more than a few clicks away from getting to that point, which makes this new feature discovered in Windows 11 build 25300 in the Windows Insider developer channel something to celebrate. And really, we're wondering why this hasn't been an option in Windows for years. The ability to right-click on the app on the taskbar and select 'End Task' to kill the process.
The advanced feature was discovered by Windows Insider PhantomOcean3, who posted the screenshot you can see here. Even so, it's a hidden feature in the Windows 11 build that needs to be enabled via the ViVe tool developed by Albacore using the command: vivetool /enable /id:42592269. After that, it appears as an option, and yeah, it's a great little feature.
Continue reading: Windows 11 adding an option to 'End Task' with a simple right-click (full post)
Microsoft's free built-in VPN is going live in Edge browser
Microsoft Edge has long been testing an integrated VPN feature, and this functionality has now debuted with the browser.
The VPN, which will be bundled free with the browser and is known as 'Edge Secure Network', is now working in the release version of Edge according to reports from some users, as flagged up by Neowin.
The VPN was previously only accessible to Edge testers, but now the 'preview' label has been discarded, so it would seem to be the case that this is the start of the rollout of the built-in VPN, and presumably it will be coming to a wider audience in the near future.
Continue reading: Microsoft's free built-in VPN is going live in Edge browser (full post)
Google Chrome browser gets smart new features to extend laptop battery life
A fresh version of Google's Chrome browser has just been pushed out, and there's some good news for laptop owners in the form of a pair of new features that have just gone live.
These aim to extend the battery life of a notebook, and they're called Memory Saver and Energy Saver, with both now rolling out to those using Chrome version 110 on the desktop.
As you may be aware, Chrome has long held a reputation for taking up too much in the way of system resources - and therefore draining battery life for those running the browser on a notebook - so this is part of Google's fightback against that perception.
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