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Windows 8.1 adds many improvements to the Windows 8 experience, both for classic PC users and users with hybrid devices or tablets. These 10 features will be appreciated by users with touch screens in Windows 8.1, so if you have a tablet or a hybrid device with Windows 8, here’s what’s exciting about Windows 8.1.

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Browsers are adding features so fast that it’s hard to keep track of them. Internet Explorer offers live tile notifications and taskbar badges, Safari offers push notifications, Chrome has its own notification center, and Ubuntu offers web app notifications.

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Google is now providing integrated parental controls in Chrome, allowing parents to control their kids’ Chrome browser usage. This feature works best on a Chromebook, where it allows you to lock down an entire user account.

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Google is now selling “Google Play Edition” devices alongside its Nexus devices on the Google Play Store website. These devices are versions of popular Android phones and tablets running different software. They seem primarily intended for Android enthusiasts and developers.

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SteamOS, Valve’s living room PC gaming operating system, is basically just a new Linux distribution. It’s based on Debian and provides easy access to a standard Linux desktop complete with a package manager.

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Google removed access to App Ops, the hidden Android app permission manager interface, in Android 4.4.2. App Ops is still present in Android, however — with root access, we can get it back.

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The tablet market is bursting at the seams with new models and innovations. One of the newest arrivals is the refresh of Amazon’s Kindle Fire lineup: the Kindle Fire HDX 7″ and 8.9″. We’ve been playing with, stress testing, and otherwise putting our pair through the paces over the last few weeks. Read on as we detail the good, the bad, and the verdict for the Kindle Fire.

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Mobile apps are harvesting entire address books and uploading them to ad servers, tracking users’ movements via GPS, and doing other nasty things. But Android’s permission system doesn’t do enough to help users fight this.

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Do you use Windows, Mac, or Linux applications? Google wants you to replace them with Chrome apps in the future. Google Chrome is now an app platform, complete with a Chrome app launcher for Windows and Mac.

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With all the great gadgets and geeky toys ‘n trinkets that fall into the small-enough-for-a-stocking category, there’s no need to limit yourself to boring stocking stuffers. Read on as we showcase some great items to tuck in all those stockings hung on the mantle with care.

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If you’ve got your hands on Microsoft’s Surface Pro, there are a variety of things you should know. These tricks span everything from hidden keyboard shortcuts and freeing up disk space to using the pen and connecting standard headsets.

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Shopping for a new computer? Don’t pay too much attention to CPU clock speed. “CPU speed” was once an easy, if not completely accurate, way to compare two computers’ performance — just compare the GHz. But not anymore.

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Google Now’s Reminders feature is powerful. You can set reminders for specific times, events like TV shows, and even have reminders go off when you visit specific locations. Time-based reminders can be recurring, popping up on a schedule.

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Android has a permissions system for individual apps, but so do iPhones and iPads. Android gives you a single prompt when you install an app, but iOS allows you to make more decisions.

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Installing software on a Mac is  different from installing software on Windows. There isn’t just one way to install applications on a Mac, either — there are several different ways, depending on the application you want to install.

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Did you know Windows has had Speech Recognition built-in since Windows Vista? This is more than just a way to type by speaking aloud — you can use it to control applications and navigate the desktop with your voice.

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Microsoft’s Windows XP started using the NTFS file system by default for its internal drives back in 2001. It’s now 12 years later, so why are USB sticks, and SD cards, and other removable drives still using FAT32?

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It’s easy to set up parental controls and filter the web. These features are built into everything from Windows to the iPad. But none of these filtering solutions is perfect.

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If you’ve frequently longed to interact with your phone, check notifications, and otherwise stay up to date with a motion as casual as glancing at your wrist watch, you’re a perfect candidate for a smartwatch. Read on as we take a tour of the Pebble smartwatch and how seamlessly it puts notifications and more right on your wrist.

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Android geeks often unlock their devices’ bootloaders, root them, enable USB debugging, and allow software installation from outside the Google Play Store. But there are reasons why Android devices don’t come with all these tweaks enabled.

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There’s never been a better time to be a geek in love with gaming: consoles, handhelds, PC games, AAA titles from big name studios, quirky indie releases that scratch a retro itch; there’s something for everybody in the increasingly diverse video game market.

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Touch-screen keyboards can be slow, especially on phones with small screens. To enter text more naturally, you can use your phone or tablet’s voice dictation feature. Just speak — punctuation included — and your device will convert what you say to text.

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More and more Android and Windows tablets are advertising their styluses. They’re popular iPad accessories, too. But not all styluses are equal. The technology built into your device’s touch screen will control what kind of styluses you can use.

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iPads and iPhones give you control over how your kids can use your devices. You can quickly lock your device to a certain app before handing it over or lock down an entire device with comprehensive parental controls.

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Did you know that Mozilla is creating a new operating system built on top of Firefox, dubbed Firefox OS? This isn’t an operating system for your computer — Firefox OS is Mozilla’s attempt at a smartphone OS.

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