We may yet be set to realise the extent of Steve Jobs and his team’s collective genius. Smartphones and tablets are no longer stand-alone items on which you can message, listen, photograph and find your way. Accessories can transform them into entirely new entities. Case in point: plug yours into a special box and it blasts out your playlist at 150W. If you’re still amazed at the idea of emailing someone from the beach, prepare to be knocked off your feet.
SET UP A FIREWALL
– Viruses and other breaches of online security are no longer the work of slacker pranksters, it’s now big business. A firewall filters the traffic coming to your computer.
– Ideally, for full protection, you’ll need an old PC and some know-how (Wikihow is a great starting point when looking for instructions) but you can set up some protection just by adjusting the settings on your computer.
– Block the ports – go to Control Panel, then Security Center. From Manage Security Settings for… choose Windows Firewall. On the General tab, turn the firewall “On” and switch off “Don’t Allow” exceptions. Click “Exceptions” and check all the programs you wish to allow, and “Add program” if there are more you wish to add then follow the instructions.
ADSL VS MOBILE
With cellular data plan prices crashing it’s now a serious consideration to go mobile. Here’s how to decide.
1. Fixed lines offer more stability and – often – uncapped data. Downloading big files? This option is best.
2. Mobile (3G/LTE) allows flexibility and portability. Just emailing, surfing and some limited social networking? Go for cellular.
3. Choosing prepaid is usually better than signing a two-year fixed rate contract – data’s getting cheaper.
4. Telkom has regular deals, so keep an eye out. But there is still merit in signing up with a tier-two service provider like MWEB for customer service.
5. Afrihost have just climbed into mobile data, and Cell C are offering mega specials, but with plummeting per MB rates, this is a good time to buy in.