At a surprise event, Microsoft announced two new Surface products, one like a digital book, the other a 5.5" dual screen mobile phone. Dubbed the Surface Neo and Surface Duo respectively, both devices will run on Windows 10X, a new mobile version of the OS, and will be available Christmas 2020. Microsoft says it will fold together like a book, or open up to be both screens on either side, or close facing each other. Unlike the overpriced Samsung Galaxy Fold, the Surface duo is hinged, rather than folding the screen.
Nooru has a laptop that is overheating. Will a cooling pad work and is there one that is self-powered? Leo says that most of them are powered by the USB port in your laptop. But will also plug into a USB adapter that plugs into the wall. Everyone who has a mobile phone has a USB adapter AC plug. So all you need is a cable long enough to do it. Another option is to use a portable USB power bank. You can then just attach that to the back of your cooler and it'll run for days. Any particular brand? Leo says no. They're all pretty much made by the same company in China.
Amy has a MacBook Pro and she needs a new power cord. She was looking at the Apple website and it's very expensive. And unfortunately, the magnetic safe connector is proprietary, so there's not likely a third party version for cheaper. So she's thinking of trading in her MacBook for $775 and get a new one or wait and let it just die. Leo says that a lot of Pro users like Leo have kept their 2015 Macbooks because they are the last design with a decent keyboard. But 2015 models are also being recalled for a swelling battery. So Amy may want to check to see if there is a recall.
Jeffrey got a new Microsoft Surface Pro at work. Is there an external power pack he can use with it? Leo says that laptops like a lot of wattage, more than an average power brick can provide. The Surface also has a proprietary charging connector, though it could charge with a Type-C connector as well. He will want a power brick that can provide more power than the surface uses. It also needs to have enough juice to charge the battery in one fell swoop.
Dianne bought a laptop with an i7 processor. Should she have gotten an i9? Leo says that the i7 is overkill for people who do what Dianne does, which is surf the net, email, etc. So an i9 would be REALLY overkill. For what Dianne does, an i9 wouldn't be of any benefit to her. It's more for video editing, graphic design, heavy computational stuff.
Debbie got a message on her Chromebook that says that Chrome is missing or damaged and she can't log in. Leo says it's easy to fix by using the powerwash utility if she can get to the sign-in screen. However, if she doesn't get to the log in screen, that points to a more serious problem. There's also a keyboard reset - Turn it on and press CTRL-ALT-SHIFT-R. This will open up the powerwash utility and completely reset and reinstall the ChromeOS. If that doesn't work, it's likely a hardware issue. Should she buy a new one? Leo says Chromebooks are still a great solution.
Donna wants to know if getting a computer at Costco is a good deal. Leo says that Costco usually carries last year's models, so she can get a pretty good deal, and they have a liberal return policy. For a new laptop, Leo likes the Lenovo Thinkpad. For desktops, Leo recommends Dell, especially for video editing. Great for business too.
Barb recently bought a Chromebook and wants to know if they have screensavers? Leo says no. Screensavers are an anachronism from the old CRT days when images would burn into the screen. That doesn't happen anymore with LCD screens. The Chromebook just goes into power saving mode and shuts off the screen. That's how it saves the screen. The screen also flickers a little. Leo says that the image may be too bright and that causes it to flicker. That's an easy fix, you just turn down the brightness a bit.
Greg has an old Gateway laptop running Windows 7 where it automatically upgraded to Windows 10. Leo says that's a great thing as Windows 7 will go end of life in January, so you're in good shape. But Greg says his screen went blank and is spinning "diagnosing your PC." Leo says it's clearly crashed. The hard drive probably failed, so the choice is to buy a new computer or spend the money to put in a new hard drive. But that computer is pretty old. A new computer will let you do more than that 10-year-old laptop.
Nikki's laptop is in airplane mode and she can't get out of it. Leo says that it may have been enabled using a function key and you have to re-enable it the same way. The switch may also be stuck. Keyboards can get dirty. It may also not be a function key. It could be a hard switch on your laptop.