5 new features for Outlook

Lately, Microsoft has given some love to Outlook — not just the desktop app, but also the web and app versions. In fact, they just released a bunch of new and improved features. Let’s take a look.

#1 RSVP
Outlook makes it fairly simple to invite people to a meeting, but now it will also keep tabs on who’s coming. Just click the new “Tracking” option under “Meeting Occurrence” and see who has committed to the meeting and who hasn’t. RSVP isn’t just available for the meeting organizer, but the attendees, too.

#2 Multiple time zones
Traveling internationally and trying to sync appointments on different continents? Not fun. But now you can set up event start times and end times across different zones.

Outlook now allows you to show multiple time zones – three within Windows, and one within Outlook for Mac. In Outlook for Windows, add one by clicking File > Options > Calendar Time Zones and clicking “Show a second time zone”. In Mac, add one additional time zone under Outlook > Preferences > Calendar Time Zones. For Outlook on the web, click the “Time Zone” drop-down arrow in your Calendar meeting invite to add an additional time zone.

#3 BCC warning
If you’re on the receiving end of a blind carbon copy (bcc) email, that means the other recipients didn’t know you were copied on it. In Outlook for Windows, you’ll now get an alert if you attempt to reply to that message, such as “You were bcc’d, so perhaps you should reply only to the sender?” That way you’ll remain anonymous.

#4 Office Lens for Android
If you use Outlook for Android, the app will integrate the Microsoft Office Lens feature.
When that happens, you can tap the photo icon while composing a message, then take a snapshot of a whiteboard, document, photo or the like. Outlook will optimize it and then embed it into the email.

#5 Bill-pay reminders
What about your bills? Outlook will identify them in your inbox, show you a summary card at the top of your email each day, send an email to remind you two days before the due date, and automatically add an event to your calendar so you don’t forget to pay on the actual day.

If you want to learn more about these new and improved features, with more on the way, just call us today for a quick chat with one of our Microsoft Office experts.

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Outlook gets new features

The new Outlook features can help you manage your time, respond to emails, take care of important things and more. Also, new upcoming features will connect you to the people and technology that power your productivity and help protect you and your business. Want to see what’s new and coming soon from Microsoft? Read on.

#1 RSVP
Outlook makes it fairly simple to invite people to a meeting, but now it will also keep tabs on who’s coming. Just click the new “Tracking” option under “Meeting Occurrence” and see who has committed to the meeting and who hasn’t. RSVP isn’t just available for the meeting organizer, but the attendees, too.

#2 Multiple time zones
Traveling internationally and trying to sync appointments on different continents? Not fun. But now you can set up event start times and end times across different zones.

Outlook now allows you to show multiple time zones – three within Windows, and one within Outlook for Mac. In Outlook for Windows, add one by clicking File > Options > Calendar Time Zones and clicking “Show a second time zone”. In Mac, add one additional time zone under Outlook > Preferences > Calendar Time Zones. For Outlook on the web, click the “Time Zone” drop-down arrow in your Calendar meeting invite to add an additional time zone.

#3 BCC warning
If you’re on the receiving end of a blind carbon copy (bcc) email, that means the other recipients didn’t know you were copied on it. In Outlook for Windows, you’ll now get an alert if you attempt to reply to that message, such as “You were bcc’d, so perhaps you should reply only to the sender?” That way you’ll remain anonymous.

#4 Office Lens for Android
If you use Outlook for Android, the app will integrate the Microsoft Office Lens feature.
When that happens, you can tap the photo icon while composing a message, then take a snapshot of a whiteboard, document, photo or the like. Outlook will optimize it and then embed it into the email.

#5 Bill-pay reminders
What about your bills? Outlook will identify them in your inbox, show you a summary card at the top of your email each day, send an email to remind you two days before the due date, and automatically add an event to your calendar so you don’t forget to pay on the actual day.

If you want to learn more about these new and improved features, with more on the way, just call us today for a quick chat with one of our Microsoft Office experts.

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Microsoft unveils new features for Outlook

Microsoft outlined a list of new features it will deliver to its various Outlook apps, including bill-pay reminders, better calendaring across time zones, and a way to see who has RSVP’d for a meeting. Here are five that could potentially be the most important.

#1 RSVP
Outlook makes it fairly simple to invite people to a meeting, but now it will also keep tabs on who’s coming. Just click the new “Tracking” option under “Meeting Occurrence” and see who has committed to the meeting and who hasn’t. RSVP isn’t just available for the meeting organizer, but the attendees, too.

#2 Multiple time zones
Traveling internationally and trying to sync appointments on different continents? Not fun. But now you can set up event start times and end times across different zones.

Outlook now allows you to show multiple time zones – three within Windows, and one within Outlook for Mac. In Outlook for Windows, add one by clicking File > Options > Calendar Time Zones and clicking “Show a second time zone”. In Mac, add one additional time zone under Outlook > Preferences > Calendar Time Zones. For Outlook on the web, click the “Time Zone” drop-down arrow in your Calendar meeting invite to add an additional time zone.

#3 BCC warning
If you’re on the receiving end of a blind carbon copy (bcc) email, that means the other recipients didn’t know you were copied on it. In Outlook for Windows, you’ll now get an alert if you attempt to reply to that message, such as “You were bcc’d, so perhaps you should reply only to the sender?” That way you’ll remain anonymous.

#4 Office Lens for Android
If you use Outlook for Android, the app will integrate the Microsoft Office Lens feature.
When that happens, you can tap the photo icon while composing a message, then take a snapshot of a whiteboard, document, photo or the like. Outlook will optimize it and then embed it into the email.

#5 Bill-pay reminders
What about your bills? Outlook will identify them in your inbox, show you a summary card at the top of your email each day, send an email to remind you two days before the due date, and automatically add an event to your calendar so you don’t forget to pay on the actual day.

If you want to learn more about these new and improved features, with more on the way, just call us today for a quick chat with one of our Microsoft Office experts.

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What you must know about Google I/O 2018

Google I/O 2018 is over, and the conference was packed with announcements. After CEO Sundar Pichai started the event by reminding the tech industry to be responsible for the services and tools they build, the updates on Google’s new creations and the upcoming version of Android got everyone excited. Find out what announcements stole the show.

What happened at Google I/O 2018?

While the primary focus of the Google I/O conference was on the developers, every tech enthusiast in the audience had the opportunity to see what the future holds for their favorite Google products and the upcoming Android P. This year’s developer conference focused on software and new mobile technologies that will be released later in the year.

Machine learning and artificial intelligence

The keynote was kicked off by CEO Sundar Pichai, who talked about Google’s mission and how it is linked to AI. He stated that AI will help industries like healthcare predict certain events.

Pichai also stated that machine learning will play a major role in enhancing closed captioning’s ability to figure out who is talking when there are multiple people speaking on-screen.

However, tech enthusiasts were extremely excited when the Google CEO announced the following features and upgrades:

  • Google Assistant will soon get 6 new voices, including one from singer and songwriter John Legend. Users will only need to say “Hey Google” to start a conversation with the product, instead of each time it is addressed. Google Assistant can now process more than one request at a time, and it can make phone calls to book reservations and appointments for the user with a feature called ‘Duplex.’
  • Google Maps can now suggest restaurants and other noteworthy locations for the user, differentiate between car and motorbike routes, and add businesses to the map by combining satellite images and AI. Augmented reality will be integrated into Street View so that users can easily track the direction they are facing or heading toward.
  • Google News will display its top five stories as soon as the app opens. Advanced AI will push stories that it thinks are relevant to the user.
  • Google Photos will have the Suggested Actions feature which offers to add color to images that are black and white, convert documents to PDF, tweak the brightness on underexposed photos, and instantly share images with the people who are in the picture.
  • Gmail will get the Smart Compose feature that will utilize machine learning to suggest phrases when writing an email.

Public beta of Android P

The test version of Android P is currently available on Oppo, Sony, Mi, OnePlus, Essential Phone and Google Pixel handsets. The search engine giant announced that they will release the first retail version around summer this year.

Beta testers enjoyed the refreshing look of Android P, where most interactions such as switching between apps were done by gestures. A new Dashboard feature shows how long the user has been on the device, including the number of notifications received, how many times the phone was unlocked, and the time spent in a particular app. Users will also be able to set a time limit if they want to stop themselves from habitually staring at their phones.

Availability of Google Lens

In last year’s event, Google announced AI-powered technology called Google Lens which uses a mix of machine learning and the smartphone’s camera to detect a specific object, know what the object is, and provide results based on what it knows about the object.

At the time, this feature was available only in Google Pixel phones, but the search engine giant announced that more smartphones will soon have this feature built in.

Google continues to innovate and improve on its products, and we are here to help you make sense of all the tech so you can adapt it to your lifestyle. Get in touch with us today so we can discuss this tech and how you can benefit from it.

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Highlights from Google I/O 2018

The Google I/O event brings major executives, engineers, and platform developers together to talk about the latest features and developments. This year’s conference just ended, and it looks like consumers have plenty to look forward to.

What happened at Google I/O 2018?

While the primary focus of the Google I/O conference was on the developers, every tech enthusiast in the audience had the opportunity to see what the future holds for their favorite Google products and the upcoming Android P. This year’s developer conference focused on software and new mobile technologies that will be released later in the year.

Machine learning and artificial intelligence

The keynote was kicked off by CEO Sundar Pichai, who talked about Google’s mission and how it is linked to AI. He stated that AI will help industries like healthcare predict certain events.

Pichai also stated that machine learning will play a major role in enhancing closed captioning’s ability to figure out who is talking when there are multiple people speaking on-screen.

However, tech enthusiasts were extremely excited when the Google CEO announced the following features and upgrades:

  • Google Assistant will soon get 6 new voices, including one from singer and songwriter John Legend. Users will only need to say “Hey Google” to start a conversation with the product, instead of each time it is addressed. Google Assistant can now process more than one request at a time, and it can make phone calls to book reservations and appointments for the user with a feature called ‘Duplex.’
  • Google Maps can now suggest restaurants and other noteworthy locations for the user, differentiate between car and motorbike routes, and add businesses to the map by combining satellite images and AI. Augmented reality will be integrated into Street View so that users can easily track the direction they are facing or heading toward.
  • Google News will display its top five stories as soon as the app opens. Advanced AI will push stories that it thinks are relevant to the user.
  • Google Photos will have the Suggested Actions feature which offers to add color to images that are black and white, convert documents to PDF, tweak the brightness on underexposed photos, and instantly share images with the people who are in the picture.
  • Gmail will get the Smart Compose feature that will utilize machine learning to suggest phrases when writing an email.

Public beta of Android P

The test version of Android P is currently available on Oppo, Sony, Mi, OnePlus, Essential Phone and Google Pixel handsets. The search engine giant announced that they will release the first retail version around summer this year.

Beta testers enjoyed the refreshing look of Android P, where most interactions such as switching between apps were done by gestures. A new Dashboard feature shows how long the user has been on the device, including the number of notifications received, how many times the phone was unlocked, and the time spent in a particular app. Users will also be able to set a time limit if they want to stop themselves from habitually staring at their phones.

Availability of Google Lens

In last year’s event, Google announced AI-powered technology called Google Lens which uses a mix of machine learning and the smartphone’s camera to detect a specific object, know what the object is, and provide results based on what it knows about the object.

At the time, this feature was available only in Google Pixel phones, but the search engine giant announced that more smartphones will soon have this feature built in.

Google continues to innovate and improve on its products, and we are here to help you make sense of all the tech so you can adapt it to your lifestyle. Get in touch with us today so we can discuss this tech and how you can benefit from it.

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The future of Android at Google I/O 2018

Google’s major conference has come and gone. Its keynote speech gives consumers a sneak peek at Google Assistant and the next version of Android. This will help developers get their integrations, services and apps ready before the search engine giant releases its new stuff. What is Google planning for 2018 and beyond? Read on to find out.

What happened at Google I/O 2018?

While the primary focus of the Google I/O conference was on the developers, every tech enthusiast in the audience had the opportunity to see what the future holds for their favorite Google products and the upcoming Android P. This year’s developer conference focused on software and new mobile technologies that will be released later in the year.

Machine learning and artificial intelligence

The keynote was kicked off by CEO Sundar Pichai, who talked about Google’s mission and how it is linked to AI. He stated that AI will help industries like healthcare predict certain events.

Pichai also stated that machine learning will play a major role in enhancing closed captioning’s ability to figure out who is talking when there are multiple people speaking on-screen.

However, tech enthusiasts were extremely excited when the Google CEO announced the following features and upgrades:

  • Google Assistant will soon get 6 new voices, including one from singer and songwriter John Legend. Users will only need to say “Hey Google” to start a conversation with the product, instead of each time it is addressed. Google Assistant can now process more than one request at a time, and it can make phone calls to book reservations and appointments for the user with a feature called ‘Duplex.’
  • Google Maps can now suggest restaurants and other noteworthy locations for the user, differentiate between car and motorbike routes, and add businesses to the map by combining satellite images and AI. Augmented reality will be integrated into Street View so that users can easily track the direction they are facing or heading toward.
  • Google News will display its top five stories as soon as the app opens. Advanced AI will push stories that it thinks are relevant to the user.
  • Google Photos will have the Suggested Actions feature which offers to add color to images that are black and white, convert documents to PDF, tweak the brightness on underexposed photos, and instantly share images with the people who are in the picture.
  • Gmail will get the Smart Compose feature that will utilize machine learning to suggest phrases when writing an email.

Public beta of Android P

The test version of Android P is currently available on Oppo, Sony, Mi, OnePlus, Essential Phone and Google Pixel handsets. The search engine giant announced that they will release the first retail version around summer this year.

Beta testers enjoyed the refreshing look of Android P, where most interactions such as switching between apps were done by gestures. A new Dashboard feature shows how long the user has been on the device, including the number of notifications received, how many times the phone was unlocked, and the time spent in a particular app. Users will also be able to set a time limit if they want to stop themselves from habitually staring at their phones.

Availability of Google Lens

In last year’s event, Google announced AI-powered technology called Google Lens which uses a mix of machine learning and the smartphone’s camera to detect a specific object, know what the object is, and provide results based on what it knows about the object.

At the time, this feature was available only in Google Pixel phones, but the search engine giant announced that more smartphones will soon have this feature built in.

Google continues to innovate and improve on its products, and we are here to help you make sense of all the tech so you can adapt it to your lifestyle. Get in touch with us today so we can discuss this tech and how you can benefit from it.

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Keeping files secure with Windows 10

Ransomware brings a world of trouble to any business. From operational disruption and revenue loss to total shutdown, no company is spared. That is why it’s wise to regularly back up your business data in multiple locations, including the cloud. Which is where Windows 10’s backup and restore tools come in handy.

File History Is Back for Windows 10

Users would be glad to know that Windows brought the same functionality of File History from Windows 8 (and 8.1) to Windows 10. Apart from the slight design changes, there really isn’t much difference, which is fine.

Serving as the main backup utility, File History enables users to regularly schedule backing up of files on their PC and store them on an external drive. That means you can connect your PC to a network or USB drive and make backups as needed.

However, you must be sure to regularly connect the external drive if you opt to set File History to back up to it. Otherwise, Windows will prompt you that your files have not been backed up for every day that you forget. You can neglect this warning at your own risk. If you back up to a mapped network that is unavailable, File History will back up to the local disk, until the network drive becomes available.

Setting Up File History

Turning File History on is not rocket science. After all, it was designed to make data backup and recovery easy for users. By default, File History backs up the main file folders, but you may also pick which folders you want to back up and bring in folders from other parts of the PC to back up.

From the Start menu, click on Settings > select Update & Security > click on the Backup section

You will see an option for Back Up Using File History. Below it is an option to Add A Drive. Click on + to see a list of external hard drives connected to your PC and choose one.

When you return to the Backup section, you will see that the Add A Drive option has changed to Automatically Back Up My Files (by default). This allows backups to be created at periodic intervals, which you can set to anywhere from every 10 minutes to once a day (default option is once every hour). You may also set how long to keep the backups (default option is forever).

Restoring files that have already been backed up is just as easy. Simply click on the Start menu and type File History in the Search bar. Then, you will see the Restore Your Files With File History option. Select this, and a new window showing the folders backed up onto your external drives will appear. A word of advice: Be sure to back up files using a network drive or the cloud, not locally.

Making System Image Backups

Backing up your entire operating system, along with all the programs, settings, and files, is possible with Windows 10. To use this feature, you need to access the Backup and Restore (Windows 7) option from the Control Panel. Click on Create a System Image and choose where to store the backup (external hard drive, network drive, or DVD) and which drives to back up. You will then be asked to make a system repair disc which you can use to start a PC and restore the image backup.

Setting Up Your OneDrive Backup Option

Use OneDrive to store and sync your files in the public cloud. While it isn’t exactly a backup solution, OneDrive can serve as a destination for your backups. Microsoft offers plans ranging from at least 5 GB to 50 GB (monthly) and 1 TB (yearly) of storage space.

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Back up files using Windows 10 tools

Ransomware attacks are in the headlines again, and thankfully, business owners are becoming more aware of the malicious software’s damaging effects. Companies realize that without safe and reliable data backup, important business information can fall into the wrong hands. This is why Windows offers easy-to-use tools like File History and OneDrive.

File History Is Back for Windows 10

Users would be glad to know that Windows brought the same functionality of File History from Windows 8 (and 8.1) to Windows 10. Apart from the slight design changes, there really isn’t much difference, which is fine.

Serving as the main backup utility, File History enables users to regularly schedule backing up of files on their PC and store them on an external drive. That means you can connect your PC to a network or USB drive and make backups as needed.

However, you must be sure to regularly connect the external drive if you opt to set File History to back up to it. Otherwise, Windows will prompt you that your files have not been backed up for every day that you forget. You can neglect this warning at your own risk. If you back up to a mapped network that is unavailable, File History will back up to the local disk, until the network drive becomes available.

Setting Up File History

Turning File History on is not rocket science. After all, it was designed to make data backup and recovery easy for users. By default, File History backs up the main file folders, but you may also pick which folders you want to back up and bring in folders from other parts of the PC to back up.

From the Start menu, click on Settings > select Update & Security > click on the Backup section

You will see an option for Back Up Using File History. Below it is an option to Add A Drive. Click on + to see a list of external hard drives connected to your PC and choose one.

When you return to the Backup section, you will see that the Add A Drive option has changed to Automatically Back Up My Files (by default). This allows backups to be created at periodic intervals, which you can set to anywhere from every 10 minutes to once a day (default option is once every hour). You may also set how long to keep the backups (default option is forever).

Restoring files that have already been backed up is just as easy. Simply click on the Start menu and type File History in the Search bar. Then, you will see the Restore Your Files With File History option. Select this, and a new window showing the folders backed up onto your external drives will appear. A word of advice: Be sure to back up files using a network drive or the cloud, not locally.

Making System Image Backups

Backing up your entire operating system, along with all the programs, settings, and files, is possible with Windows 10. To use this feature, you need to access the Backup and Restore (Windows 7) option from the Control Panel. Click on Create a System Image and choose where to store the backup (external hard drive, network drive, or DVD) and which drives to back up. You will then be asked to make a system repair disc which you can use to start a PC and restore the image backup.

Setting Up Your OneDrive Backup Option

Use OneDrive to store and sync your files in the public cloud. While it isn’t exactly a backup solution, OneDrive can serve as a destination for your backups. Microsoft offers plans ranging from at least 5 GB to 50 GB (monthly) and 1 TB (yearly) of storage space.

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Windows 10 makes it easy to back up files

Businesses rely on computers for their daily operations, so getting afflicted by ransomware is devastating. It blocks access to all data, which can result in financial losses and the company closing down temporarily or permanently. Fortunately, Windows offers built-in tools and cloud storage options so you won’t have to fear data loss.

File History Is Back for Windows 10

Users would be glad to know that Windows brought the same functionality of File History from Windows 8 (and 8.1) to Windows 10. Apart from the slight design changes, there really isn’t much difference, which is fine.

Serving as the main backup utility, File History enables users to regularly schedule backing up of files on their PC and store them on an external drive. That means you can connect your PC to a network or USB drive and make backups as needed.

However, you must be sure to regularly connect the external drive if you opt to set File History to back up to it. Otherwise, Windows will prompt you that your files have not been backed up for every day that you forget. You can neglect this warning at your own risk. If you back up to a mapped network that is unavailable, File History will back up to the local disk, until the network drive becomes available.

Setting Up File History

Turning File History on is not rocket science. After all, it was designed to make data backup and recovery easy for users. By default, File History backs up the main file folders, but you may also pick which folders you want to back up and bring in folders from other parts of the PC to back up.

From the Start menu, click on Settings > select Update & Security > click on the Backup section

You will see an option for Back Up Using File History. Below it is an option to Add A Drive. Click on + to see a list of external hard drives connected to your PC and choose one.

When you return to the Backup section, you will see that the Add A Drive option has changed to Automatically Back Up My Files (by default). This allows backups to be created at periodic intervals, which you can set to anywhere from every 10 minutes to once a day (default option is once every hour). You may also set how long to keep the backups (default option is forever).

Restoring files that have already been backed up is just as easy. Simply click on the Start menu and type File History in the Search bar. Then, you will see the Restore Your Files With File History option. Select this, and a new window showing the folders backed up onto your external drives will appear. A word of advice: Be sure to back up files using a network drive or the cloud, not locally.

Making System Image Backups

Backing up your entire operating system, along with all the programs, settings, and files, is possible with Windows 10. To use this feature, you need to access the Backup and Restore (Windows 7) option from the Control Panel. Click on Create a System Image and choose where to store the backup (external hard drive, network drive, or DVD) and which drives to back up. You will then be asked to make a system repair disc which you can use to start a PC and restore the image backup.

Setting Up Your OneDrive Backup Option

Use OneDrive to store and sync your files in the public cloud. While it isn’t exactly a backup solution, OneDrive can serve as a destination for your backups. Microsoft offers plans ranging from at least 5 GB to 50 GB (monthly) and 1 TB (yearly) of storage space.

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