Cortana gets a significant update for Windows 10 20H1 PCs - MSPoweruser - Canada News Media
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Cortana gets a significant update for Windows 10 20H1 PCs – MSPoweruser

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Microsoft has been slowly cutting back on the features supported by their voice assistant, Cortana, including removing its integration from Android handsets and taking away support for basic features such as setting timers.

It seems the company has now started the phase of building it back up again, with ALumia reporting that Microsoft has released a significant update for Cortana Beta, taking it to version 2.1912.18729.0, which introduces a number of new features.

These include:

  • Suggested Taks: Although at the moment there is an empty section, the activities are in turn divided into three sub-categories (Found, Active and History). 
  • WakeWord : Microsoft has introduced the possibility to start Cortana simply by saying its name (as was already possible with the old Cortana app). The feature does not appear to offer the ability to set your own wakeword yet.
  • Redesigned settings:  Microsoft has significantly improved the settings of Cortana (Beta), introducing a more elegant and responsive hamburger menu;
  • Support for old versions of Windows 10 has been eliminated:  You can now download Cortana (Beta) only on Windows 10 PCs with a build 19023 or higher on board;
  • Corrections and improvements

Some of the features can be seen illustrated in ALumia’s screenshots above.

Currently, Cortana only supports US-English, with Microsoft set to withdraw from most of the world. It remains to be seen if the space will be filled by competitors such as Amazon’s Alexa or if Microsoft will claw its way back up to relevance again.

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NSA alerted Microsoft to major Windows 10 security flaw – CNN

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Microsoft (MSFT) issued a software update on Tuesday to fix the vulnerability, as part of its normal schedule for releasing software patches.
News of the vulnerability and patch were first reported by independent journalist Brian Krebs, who said Microsoft provided its software fix to the military and key infrastructure companies ahead of Tuesday’s public release.
Microsoft said in a statement Monday night that it provides advance versions of its updates to some users under a special testing program. Jeff Jones, a senior director at Microsoft, declined to discuss specifics of the flaw “to prevent unnecessary risk to customers.”
The company did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Tuesday.
Russians hack energy company that played major role in Trump Ukraine scandal
The NSA’s rare announcement of the flaw, along with its decision to warn Microsoft rather than exploit the bug for intelligence purposes, underscores the magnitude of the threat it could pose to businesses, consumers and government agencies worldwide.
The NSA said that, while it has shared vulnerability information with the private sector in the past, this marks the first time that it has come forward publicly to do so. The agency said the decision reflects an effort to build trust with cybersecurity researchers.
“Part of building trust is showing the data,” Anne Neuberger, the NSA’s director of cybersecurity, told reporters on a conference call Tuesday. Because the NSA has never allowed itself to be linked to a vulnerability disclosure, she said, “it’s hard for entities to trust that we take this seriously. And ensuring vulnerabilities can be mitigated is an absolute priority.”
The NSA did not use the vulnerability to exploit adversaries, and the bug was turned over to Microsoft as soon as it was discovered, Neuberger added. She said the NSA has not detected any other entities using the bug.
The Department of Homeland Security said on the call that it would issue a bulletin to federal agencies advising them to install the Microsoft patches immediately.
The flaw concerns a core Windows function that verifies the legitimacy of apps and programs, a feature known as CryptoAPI.
“It’s the equivalent of a building security desk checking IDs before permitting a contractor to come up and install new equipment,” said Ashkan Soltani, a security expert and former chief technologist for the Federal Trade Commission.
By compromising that validation feature, hackers could easily impersonate “good” software companies to install bad software, Soltani said, potentially allowing them to spy on computer users or hold their devices hostage for ransom.

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Leaked Galaxy S20 spec sheet details huge screens, big batteries, Android 10, more – 9to5Google

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Samsung’s Galaxy S20 series is going official in just a few short weeks and this week we’ve learned pretty much all there is to learn about the entire collection. Today, another Galaxy S20 leak details the full specs on all three main models.

Courtesy of Ishan Agarwal and MySmartPrice, the full Galaxy S20 spec sheet has hit the web. This fills in some of the gaps from past leaks of the device.

What’s familiar with all three variants? Samsung is using a centered punch-hole design with a 20:9, 3200x1440p 120Hz AMOLED panel of varying sizes. All three variants also share Android 10 pre-installed, IP68 water resistance, 128GB of base storage with microSD, and, at least with these variants, an Exynos 990 chipset. In most regions, though, we’re expecting a Snapdragon 865. This spec sheet doesn’t mention RAM, but previous rumors place the Ultra with up to 16GB.

What’s different? Let’s talk about the standard Galaxy S20 first. The smallest of the three, this device still packs a 6.2-inch display, a slight jump up from the S10’s 6.1-inch panel. The S20 carries dimensions of 152x68x7.8mm, not too different from the S10. There’s also a 12MP main camera, 64MP telephoto camera with 3x optical zoom, and 12MP ultra-wide camera. Samsung is apparently using these sensors to craft up to 30x digital zoom and offering 8K video recording. There’s also a 10MP front camera with 4K video. A 4,000 mAh battery rounds out the spec sheet.

The Galaxy S20+ carries a similar spec sheet. It has the same set of cameras but adds a ToF sensor to the mix as well. There’s also a larger 4,500 mAh battery to power the 6.7-inch display. As pictured below, the S20+ is quite a bit larger than the S10+ with dimensions of 162x74x7.8mm. By comparison, S10+ measured in at 157.6×74.1×7.8mm.

Finally, there’s the S20 Ultra which is, as previously detailed, is absolutely ridiculous. It has a 6.9-inch display, 167x76x8.8mm body, and a much more elaborate camera array. There’s a 40MP front-facing camera and, on the back, a 108MP primary camera, 48MP telephoto camera with 10x optical zoom, 12MP ultra-wide and a ToF sensor too. Samsung is using this array to create 100x digital zoom. Rounding things out is a 5,000 mAh battery which is, again, pretty ridiculous.

What do you think of the Galaxy S20’s leak specs? Drop a comment below and let us know! The Galaxy S20 goes official on February 11th.

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Here are the leaked specs for the Samsung Galaxy S20 series with 5G – MobileSyrup

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While Samsung doesn’t sell its Exynos 990 Galaxy flagship chipset in Canada, we’re still interested in this leak directed at the European and Asian markets, which comes from well-known leaker Ishan Agarwal.

Looking at Agarwal’s tweet (seen below), each of the leaked phones say ‘5G.’ It’s unclear if the devices will come to Canada with these exact specs. If the specs are different, they’ll likely still be very similar.

What’s noteworthy about this tweet is the 6.9-inch display and 20:9 aspect ratio listed for the Galaxy S20 Ultra, indicating that the phone is going to be very tall.

Additionally, the handset will reportedly feature a 5,000mAh battery and a massive 40-megapixel wide-angle front camera. The device is tipped also to feature a 108-megapixel primary shooter and another camera with 10x optical zoom and up to 100x digital zoom.

All three handsets will feature screens with a 120Hz refresh rate and an ‘Infinity-O’ display.

What’s missing from these specifications is how much RAM the phones will feature. Past rumours indicate the S20 Ultra will sport up to 16GB of RAM, and that the S20+ is set to feature up to 12GB of RAM.

In Canada, both devices will almost certainly feature Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 865 processor instead of its Exynos 990 chipset.

Source: Ishan Agarwal (@ishangarwal24) 

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