Tuesday, December 31, 2019

The cheapest Xbox One bundle deals and sale prices for the January sales

Microsoft have discounted their cheap Xbox One S bundle deals for the January sales, so you can pick up some amazing discounts before 2020 even begins. We're looking at prices as low as £159 for the Xbox One S this week - a fantastic deal that also includes Forza Horizon 4 for free. Overall, stock is holding on these fantastic Xbox One S deals, so if you're desperately looking for that final gift this week, or if you're just curious about the Xbox's offerings, now is a great time to take the plunge. 

The cheapest console you can pick up today is the Xbox One S All Digital edition. The disc-less console has proven popular over the seasonal sales period - offering an incredibly cheap way of getting yourself into the Microsoft ecosystem. That said, stock is running incredibly low right now, and it might be difficult to grab one before the big day. Plus, with the full console going for just £159 with bundled games included, you might as well pay a few pennies more for the opportunity to buy cheap second-hand games further down the line. 

So if you've decided it's finally time to opt for a sweet Xbox One deal, then you're in luck. Microsoft is really pushing discounts on the 1TB consoles now too, which are much more accommodating for your library of games and their large install sizes than the 500GB models, which seem to have been discontinued now. Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order, Gears 5, FIFA 20 and more are all aboard the Xbox One deals train today.

We've also just added a section below dedicated to rounding up the best prices for the newly-announced Xbox One S All-Digital Edition, although you might want to hold off on that version of the Xbox console for a while. We'll tell you why further down.

Retailers are stocking some cheap Xbox One deals as standalone purchases, but the best value is to be found with the bundles with extra games. Xbox One bundles nowadays often cost less than the standalone consoles prices too, so be sure to check out our hand-picked list of the best Xbox One offers below the comparison charts. Or maybe you're looking for a 4K upgrade? Then you'll want to take a look at the latest Xbox One X bundles.

Looking to buy in the US or Australia? You'll want to head on over to our US page or AU page.

xbox one s all-digital edition prices deals

Microsoft finally announced the long-rumoured Xbox One S All-Digital Edition in April 2019 and it's available right now. As the name suggests, this version of the Xbox One does not come with a disc drive. So you will not be able to play physical games or blu-rays on this version.

The Xbox One S All-Digital Edition costs £199 in the UK and comes with codes for Forza Horizon 3, Minecraft and Sea of Thieves. To be honest, we're not entirely convinced at that price point as you can get the regular version for a similar price and with newer games. Actually, we regularly see standard Xbox One S bundles on this page go for even less, so be sure to check out the offers further down the page before jumping on this. The new console offers no technical improvements over the original S model, so this should only be considered when the price reaches a more appropriate level or extra titles are included in the bundle. Naturally, we'll keep this page updated when it does.

cheap xbox one s deals

The slimmed-down design of the Xbox One S looks much better than the original chunky box and the power brick is now a thing of the past. The main draw though is 4K visual support meaning you'll be able to watch specialised Blu-Ray and Netflix content in 4K on your new 4K TV

The Xbox One S is now the standard console and has replaced the older model that's been phased out at retailers. The Xbox One S is cheaper too, so we've stopped covering deals on the older model as you're getting better value with the newer version and we've not spotted any decent stock for months now.

More Xbox One deals

Still not found your ideal Xbox One deal in our highlights of the best offers out there? Why not check out more Xbox One bundles directly from the retailers from our list below?

The new Xbox One X is capable of displaying games in glorious HDR 4K and is the most powerful console ever made. Sadly, it has the price-tag to match too as it's way more expensive than the Xbox One S. The comparison chart below is mainly full of prices for the new console on its own. However, we're starting to see better offers appear online where you can get discounted (or sometimes free) games included too. For more details, head on over to our extensive Xbox One X bundles page for the best value deals.

If you're looking to play your Xbox games online or take advantage of the free Games with Gold initiative, you'll want to check out our cheap Xbox Live Gold deals page where we've found prices considerably cheaper than the default price. If you're looking to play more games on your Xbox One S but don't want to splash on full purchases, you should also check out our best Xbox Game Pass deals

The best cheap TV sales and 4K TV deals in the UK over the January sales

There are some amazing cheap 4K TV deals about right now - perfect for hitting 2020 with a brand new telly. We've found great deals on 40-inch to 75-inch 4K smart TVs, with some offering amazing features like Dolby Vision and smart assistant integration. Many prices have dropped even further this week, with a great 50-inch Toshiba TV hitting under £300 and even better discounts on massive 65 and 75-inch displays. 

This week we've seen some fantastic returning price drops on the unique Philips Ambilight series, as well as some new entrances for even cheaper Hisense 4K TVs. Such is the range of cheap 4K TV models we've found this week that we're even highlighting a particularly good deal on a Samsung curved TV, as well as a gorgeous Frame 4K model. Overall, we're seeing some stunning cheap 4K TV deals in this week's round-up. We've got you covered if you're looking for TV deals in the US too.

We've found something for everyone here. We've got you covered for multiple size categories and we've looked at both ends of the pricing scale so you can get a cheap TV on a low budget, or a higher quality set for a lower price than you expected, even if those super new 8K models aren't coming down any time soon. Not to worry though, as some of these HDR 4K TV deals will make your jaw drop.

Netflix, Amazon, Sky TV and the like are all increasing their 4K content too so you won't be short on Ultra HD content to watch. Standard HD content will be upscaled on these TVs too, so you can feel the benefits of 4K straight away – whether you're watching on a mid-sized 40-inch TV or a mammoth 75-inch display.

We keep our eye on the latest TV deals throughout the year, so we're poised to find you the best price whenever the need to replace your old TV arises. We're fully behind the 4K TV movement too as a competitive market has seen prices reach affordable levels much quicker than when HD tellies first came around. One look at the prices below and you'll see what we mean. So much so, we've stopped covering the older standard HD TVs now seeing as Ultra HD TV deals are so cheap today.

Finding you the best cheap TV deal

We've split our carefully curated 4K TV deals into different size categories immediately after our pick for cheap TV deal of the week. Whatever your budget, we're sure we can find something for you. 

Note: all of our selected TV sales highlights are for 4K/Ultra HD TVs and include a built-in freeview tuner as standard. Pretty much every deal comes with Smart TV functionality built-in along with HDR technology. If they don't, we'll clearly mention it.

The best cheap TV deals you can buy today

cheap tv deals

cheap 4k samsung tv deals

cheap LG tv deals 4K

Extra retailer cheap 4K TV sales links:

Not found the right cheap TV for you today? Or maybe you'd prefer to directly browse the offers at your favourite retailers instead of our highlights of the best cheap TV deals? We're updating this page on a regular basis, so you may have better luck another day. If you want to take a look for yourself now though, here are the direct links to a the full collection of TV sales at multiple stores. 

More large screen 4K TV sales

If you're after more seriously large TV deals, we should warn you, they don't come cheap. However, if you want to see some more large screen TV deals -we're talking about 65 to 85-inch TVs- we'd recommend heading over to John Lewis, Currys and Amazon as they seem to stock more models than most UK retailers.

If you'd like a headstart on some of the very finest TVs money can buy, be sure to take a look at our guides for the best 55-inch TV or if you're going large we've got the best 65-inch TV models covered too.

Get big savings on a Nest Cam and a Nest Hub in the John Lewis January Sales

There's a lot to like about the Google Nest series of devices: they're polished, they're reliable, and they can all be controlled via a chat with Google Assistant on your phone or on your smart speaker.

Now you've got even more of a reason to go Google with your next smart home purchase, because John Lewis is knocking £59 off the price of a Nest Cam Outdoor and a Nest Hub when you buy them both together – if you're looking for a bargain in the January Sales, this could be the one.

The Nest Cam Outdoor will keep a careful eye on your property, enabling you to view a live feed and get motion detection alerts on your phone at any time, wherever you are in the world.

The Nest Hub (previously known as the Home Hub), meanwhile, is a compact 7-inch smart display that brings you all the magic of Google Assistant and a screen – you can watch YouTube videos, control your other smart home devices, get weather reports, and much more besides.

We'd advise you to act fast if you don't want to miss out: buying these two gadgets separately would set you back £208, but from John Lewis they'll cost you just £149. Of course the two devices work very well together too.

Save on Google Nest gadgets

You can find all the best January sales right here on TechRadar - we're collecting all the best savings to bring you amazing deals throughout the holiday period.

The best cheap PS4 bundles, deals and prices in the January sales

PS4 bundles have been crashing in price well ahead of January sales this year, and we've been tracking all the best discounts right here. With the holidays just around the corner, these PS4 deals show no signs of slowing down, however. We're still seeing prices on PS4 Pro consoles crash down to £249 with some amazing games packaged in for free, and the Slim version of the console is still even cheaper at £199. 

These PS4 bundles are offering fantastic value for your cash this week, so whether you've been waiting until the last second to pick up a cheap console before the holidays, or if you're yet to give the PlayStation a try - these prices are pretty convincing at the moment. We've got all the best cheap PS4 bundles just in time for those final weeks before Christmas. 

You're in for a great time too, as so many of the best PS4 games are super cheap nowadays. You've got plenty of great titles to enjoy for far less than they originally sat on store shelves for, and over the Black Friday sales you'll have more than enough opportunity to take advantage of even lower game prices. 

We're on the hunt for the lowest PS4 prices all year round, so we aren't easily fooled by the fake deals that don't actually save you any money over buying the games individually. We're here to help save you as much money as possible. 

We also want you to play the games everyone's shouting about which is why we're going the extra mile to track down PS4 and PS4 Pro bundles with the likes of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare, FIFA 20, Days Gone, Red Dead Redemption 2 and more. Sometimes though, you can get a load of older games with a cheap PS4 for even less money, so we'll keep our eyes out for those offers too.

This week has seen some fantastic price cuts on PS4 Pro models, with significant reductions on a number of bundles. The new £249 price tag isn't so far off the £199 cost of the PS4 Slim this week, so be sure to check out all the PS4 deals on offer before you make your decision. 

This page lists the best cheap PS4 prices in the UK, but we also have dedicated guides for US readers and our Australian ones too. Below you'll find a comparison chart that automatically pulls in the freshest and cheapest PS4 deals from UK retailers, followed by our hand-picked selection of the best PS4 bundles that offer the best value discounts on the additional software or accessories. After those deals you'll find we've also covered the same options for the PS4 Pro prices.

cheap ps4 slim deals

The PS4 Slim is... slimmer, quieter and smaller

The PS4 Slim launched (with no games included) in September 2016 for around £259 (500GB) or £310 (1TB) and has now replaced the original fatter PS4. The new console is smaller, lighter, more power efficient and cheaper than the remaining stock of the older PlayStation 4 deals nowadays, so you're not paying more for the refined tech. We'd advise you check out the cheap PS4 bundles further down this page as many of them are cheaper than buying the console on its own or you can get a lot more for a spending a bit extra on top.

You'll often find that the most attractive way to get a cheap PS4 is with a bundle with extra hardware or extra games. These are the best PS4 bundle prices currently available in the UK – we update these deals on a regular basis.

Extra PS4 retailer links:

Want to look through some more cheap PS4 deals? It's ok, you're only hurting our feelings a little. The links below will take you straight to the PS4 console deals section of the following websites, just in-case you fancy digging out a bargain of your own.

ps4 pro deals

The PS4 that offers 4K HDR gaming and Netflix

Essentially, the PS4 Pro is a 4K upgrade of the current PS4, rather than a 'next-gen' console. The keywords to take in from the PS4 Pro are 4K and HDR. The new machine allows game developers to include 4K resolution and High Dynamic Range options in their games, so expect the like of Death Stranding, Red Dead Redemption 2, Shadow of the Tomb Raider, God of War, Uncharted 4, Horizon: Zero Dawn and more to look even better on a HDR-enabled 4K TV. You'll also be able to stream 4K content from Netflix and YouTube. Want to get the right TV? Then check out our cheap 4K TV sales and deals page. We've seen big discounts as Sony fights off the latest Xbox One X deals too.

If you're buying a PS4, you'll probably need a cheap PlayStation Plus deal too. PlayStation Plus (aka PS Plus or PS+) allows you to play PS4 games online, along with access to the Instant Game Collection, a bunch of free games for PS4, PS3 and Vita each month. The default price for a year is £50. We can do better than that though, so check out our selection of the best PlayStation Plus deals.

Need an extra cheap PS4 controller? Don't forget to check our Best DualShock 4 deals. Or maybe a cheap PlayStation VR deal?  If you're still torn, maybe you'd prefer one of our Xbox One deals

The best cheap laptop deals and sales for January sales: prices from just £139

We've got cheap laptop deals for days this week as retailers hit low prices in the January sales. There's a fantastic range of price cuts on offer right now, so whether you're looking for a cheap Chromebook for everyday computing or something more powerful for demanding software, you'll find an excellent price on some of our favourite laptops going. These laptops are all offering the processing and storage you'd need to at least get some everyday work done, and cheaper models are all fully supportive of updates to come, so there's no need to worry you're not getting your money's worth with a sub-£200 laptop here. That said, we're still seeing strong discounts on the higher end of the spectrum, with massive savings to be had on larger Asus, HP, and Lenovo laptops. 

We've got laptop deals all the way from £139 to £1,000, so whether you're looking for a quick stop-gap or cheap laptop for small everyday tasks, or a powerhouse of multi-tasking and high-performance software, we've got you covered. We've split this guide into sections based on price to help you keep that budget in check.

We've also combed each listing for those vital stats to give you the numbers straight up. Compare the models and laptop deals we've found from across the web to find the one that suits your needs perfectly - we'll also give you a bit of background info about each laptop we highlight. For you Apple fans, you might be interested in our MacBook prices and deals page too.

If you're from the States or Down Under, be sure to check out our selection of the top laptop deals in the US or Australia.

Cheap laptop sales and deal highlights

We'll continue adding the best cheap laptop deals in the latest sales as we find them. Up next, you'll find the latest prices on some of the most popular laptops around along with a list of retailers who often have a great selection of laptop sales if nothing else takes your fancy here.

  • Amazon: retail giant is often the cheapest in the UK.
  • John Lewis: models come with at least two-year guarantee.
  • Very: Often surprises with cheap prices on electronics.
  • Laptops Direct: specialist UK store has a huge selection of laptop deals.
  • ebuyer: the UK computing specialists have some great promotions.
  • Currys: the retailer that's seemingly always having a laptop sale.
  • AO: lots of cheap laptops at this growing electronics specialist.
  • Argos: home delivery or pick up a cheap laptop locally today.
  • Dell: get a great laptop deal direct from Dell.
  • Apple: MacBooks aren't exactly cheap, but they're excellent workstations

The cheapest laptop deals on these popular picks

cheap laptop deals prices sales

On release, the Chromebook Flip reached new heights for the Windows-free laptops as it came rocking a proper Intel Core processor along with a HD screen. Most models nowadays come with 64GB of storage instead of the 32GB which is plenty for running apps and storing regular documents and a fair few media files - you can always use a USB drive for more space. For most users, the newer PixelBook is what we'd call 'overkill', not to mention considerably more expensive, so we'd recommend this model if you just need something for work, browsing the net and so on. The Chrome OS works beautifully in this 2-in-1 laptop's tablet mode too.

HP Pavilion 15

A sturdy choice for a study laptop for school/college/uni. The HP Pavilion 15 has plenty of power for the average student's needs while keeping the costs sensible. There are plenty of configurations available too. Some favour speedy SSDs, while others go for larger regular hard drives, so it all depends on what you're going to need more really. Faster loading or more space for storing media files and downloads.

Asus Transformer Mini T102HA

The Asus Transformer Mini series is one of the most reliable brands of 2-in-1 tablet/laptop hybrids on the market. This upgrade includes a fingerprint sensor and double the RAM at 4GB for speedier performance compared to the older models. For your money, this is one of the most impressive two-in-one transformer models out there. Available in orange/white as seen above, or in a traditional grey steel colour.

cheap laptop deals prices sales

Ready to stretch that budget a bit (ok, maybe a lot) further? Then be sure to check out our selection of the very best laptops money can buy as we've used our dedicated price comparison technology to find the cheapest prices for them too. You can always come back to this page if they seem a bit overpowered (and over-expensive) for what you need.

Grab a new fitness tracker in the January Sales with these fantastic Fitbit deals

The January sales have begun, and we're looking to these fantastic Fitbit deals to hit 2020 running straight from the off. Across the US and UK, these Fitbit Versa fitness trackers (and a few other devices) have already seen price drops over the holiday sales, and there's still time to pick up your own.

The excellent Fitbit Versa deals below can land you a nifty little fitness tracker for far less than you'd usually part with, and span the full Versa range so you can find the perfect wrist piece for you. The Fitbit Versa is a good choice for someone looking for a top fitness tracker for a lower price - these have been slashed in cost ahead of the sales, making them a far more palatable choice if you're hoping to get a screen to go with your tracker.

Coming in cheapest is the Fitbit Versa Lite. It's a pared-down version of the fully-fledged Fitbit Versa, but ideal for anyone looking to track their fitness without spending over $100 / £100 and getting bogged down with a set of features they won't use. 

This cheap fitness tracker doesn't exactly skimp on its offerings either, however. If you choose the slimline Versa Lite, you're getting all the fitness and sleep tracking you'd expect from a Fitbit as well as app and notification integration with your phone, four-day battery life, and a swim-proof casing. 

The Versa and Versa 2 fitness trackers offer a step up in the range of features on offer, with the slight increase in price tag to match (though you're still getting a great price in these Fitbit Versa deals). 

Fitbit was there right from the start of the fitness tracker revolution, and continues to off a strong suite of tracking dynamics paired with a good app experience too.

  • Check out more After Christmas sales at Walmart
  • Check out more After Christmas sales at Amazon

Today's best Fitbit Versa deals

Still looking for more? We've got all the best Fitbit prices right here on TechRadar, but we're also tracking the very best smartwatch deals around. If you're after more fitness goodies and you're an avid iPhone user, you might also want to check out the best Apple Watch sales around. 

These are officially the worst passwords of 2019

SplashData has released its annual list of the most commonly-used passwords across the world, uncovering that old security habits really do die hard.

The security firm investigated over five million leaked passwords over the past twelve months, and found that many of the most common logins would be easy to guess for even the most incompetent hackers.

In perhaps the most surprising news, "password" has for the first time been knocked out of the top two spots, being replaced by the painfully simple "123456" and "123456789".

Complex

SplashData estimates almost 10 percent of people have used at least one of the 25 worst passwords on this year’s list, with nearly three percent using "123456".

The company noted that while many computer programs now prevent such simple passwords from being created in the first place, older applications and some websites lack this ability, allowing for some dangerously weak passwords. 

Among this year's new entries were “1q2w3e4r” and “qwertyuiop” - simple patterns using contiguous keys on the keyboard - however SplashData says that using such letter/number combinations will still be easy to crack.

“Our hope by publishing this list each year is to convince people to take steps to protect themselves online, and we think these and other efforts are finally starting to pay off,” says Morgan Slain, CEO of SplashData.

“We can tell that over the years people have begun moving toward more complex passwords, though they are still not going far enough as hackers can figure out simple alphanumeric patterns.”

Here are the so-called "worst passwords of 2019"

  1. 123456
  2. 123456789
  3. qwerty
  4. password
  5. 1234567
  6. 12345678
  7. 12345
  8. iloveyou
  9. 111111
  10.  123123

5 Star Wars spin-off movies Lucasfilm should make after The Rise of Skywalker

Star Wars is dead… long live Star Wars? The Skywalker saga may have ended with The Rise of Skywalker, but the galaxy lives on, with The Mandalorian and the upcoming Obi-Wan series on TV and a new Star Wars film arriving in 2022

But what will that movie be? At the moment, no one outside of Lucasfilm and Disney has a clue. We know that MCU mastermind Kevin Feige is down to produce something, that The Last Jedi’s Rian Johnson may (or may not) still be developing a series of Star Wars films and that Game of Thrones showrunners David Benioff and DB Weiss definitely aren’t, but until an announcement (strongly rumored to be early next year), we’re all in the dark.

Still, it’s fun to speculate. Here then are five directions the saga could potentially go in…

The Next Generation of Jedi

One of the open goals that The Rise of Skywalker misses is in picking up the loose threads from The Last Jedi. If you’ll recall, Episode 8 ends with the implication that the Force is growing once more, far away from the Skywalker bloodline. There may well be an entire new generation of Force-users waking up to their powers. Now that the war is over, someone needs to get them in line...

Imagine an X-Men type film, where a group of charismatic tutors must help troubled young initiates avoid the perils of the Dark Side. Rey would be involved in some capacity for sure, but you could also include Maz Kanata (not a Jedi, but very much in-tune with the Force) and new characters in the vein of The Force Awakens’ Lor San Tekka, trying to guide this gifted - but also extremely dangerous - new generation into the future. Hell, even Force Ghost Luke could show up, if we can pull Mark Hamill away from Twitter.

The Syndicate Wars

One of the most fascinating aspects of Solo - a film that absolutely nobody wanted, but which managed to be fun enough to retroactively justify its existence - was its exploration of the galaxy's various criminal organizations. By the end of the movie Crimson Dawn (led by Maul, no less) is a fearsome force in the galaxy and Qi'ra (Emilia Clarke) is in deeper than ever before. 

It's hard to imagine we'll be seeing a Solo 2 any time soon based on its box office, but there's plenty of mileage in following his ex. Game of Thrones may have finished, but Emilia Clarke is still a big name and could easily carry a film exploring the galaxy's shadier nooks and crannies as Qi'ra tries desperately to escape her past, dodge her saber-wielding boss and make a new life for herself. Team her up with Donald Glover's universally-loved Lando Calrissian and you have everything you need for a fun, exciting Star Wars film that’s mostly detached from the familiar bigger picture of the Empire and the Rebellion.

Knights of the Old Republic

The Knights of the Old Republic video games have become a beloved Star Wars era in their own right, every bit as cherished as the films. Set some 4000 years before the events of A New Hope, they explore the raging conflict between the Jedi and the Sith, both at the height of their powers. 

Sound overly familiar? It’s really not. KOTOR stands out thanks to its shades of grey and rich, complex characterization. Revan, in particular, is a fascinating character - truly embodying both the dark side and the light in a way that Anakin never quite managed. The era also has the benefit of being sufficiently distant from current canon that you could do pretty much anything, while still feeling like Star Wars.

Of all of these suggestions, this is the one that may actually be in development right now... Back in May, Buzzfeed reported that Altered Carbon screenwriter Laeta Kalogridis has penned a script for a potential Knights of the Old Republic film. We’re keeping all our lightsabers crossed…

Into the Unknown

Did you watch the Star Wars animated series Rebels? If you didn't, you missed out on some of the best - and most adventurous - Star Wars storytelling of the last few years. Spoilers for the fate of protagonist Ezra Bridger ahead...

Set a few years before A New Hope, the series follows the young Jedi as he joins a growing rebel cell. Now, we all know that by the time of A New Hope, Obi-Wan is the only (known) surviving Jedi, so there was always a heavy question mark hanging over his eventual fate. As it happens, Ezra survives the series, fleeing into the Unknown Regions, albeit chased by the wicked Grand Admiral Thrawn.

Something that Star Wars has sometimes suffered with is its tendency to smallness. Everyone and everything is connected. A film set in a brand new area of the galaxy, though, offers the chance to start again. The Unknown Regions are, well, unknown. There's no Empire or Rebellion here, so you wouldn't have to rely on the backstory of Rebels. Instead, this would be the story of a single Jedi, truly lost and alone, forced to rely on his wits and his lightsaber to survive. 

Poe Dameron: Sith Hunter

Honestly, who doesn't love Poe Dameron? Of all the characters introduced in the sequels, he's the one that most embodies the adventure serial vibes of the original trilogy. Somewhere between Han Solo and Indiana Jones, he's a hugely appealing lead. And, of course, it doesn't hurt that Oscar Isaac is easy on the eye.

But what does he do next? In The Last Jedi Poe is being positioned as a leader of the Resistance, but it's hard to imagine him settling down and becoming a senator in a new New Republic. Instead, we can see him living for the thrill of adventure, venturing out on missions for the new order, possibly tracking down the remainder of Palpatine's Final Order, like a futuristic nazi hunter.

He wouldn’t have to be alone, either. The Rise of Skywalker sets him up with a perfect companion in the form of Zorii Bliss, plus there would be plenty of room for his other co-stars to show up. This would be a great chance to explore the new status quo, while telling a rattling adventure yarn.

These excellent GoPro deals are sticking around for the January Sales

If you're looking to capture the best moments of 2020, these GoPro deals are offering a fantastic price cut on some of the cheaper GoPro models in the January Sales. You can save over £100 on the Hero 7 Silver (down to just £169) and the Hero 7 Black (£278), or if you want the cheapest version possible, the Hero 7 White is reduced to just £118.30 this week. 

With the Hero 8 model releasing just two months ago, we've been looking to the Go Pro Hero 7 Silver and Black models for some hefty discounts in the 2020 sales. 

These two models represent the mid-range and higher end of the Go Pro Hero 7 range, so you're getting an excellent action camera for your cash whichever version you pick up. Both offer the hardy outer shell on which GoPro has based its name, but the Silver is slimmed down version of the high-tech Black model with the price cut to match. While you can still shoot 4K 30fps footage with video stabilization and a wide lens on the Silver, there are a few features on the Black that may draw more professionally inclined customers. 

These GoPro deals are a great way to cash in on 2020's January sales, you're picking up a GoPro Hero 7 Silver for just a hair over the cheapest it's ever been and saving a good £100 on the Black model. 

Today's best GoPro deals in the January sales

You can find all the best January sales right here on TechRadar - we're collecting all the best savings to bring you amazing deals throughout the holiday period. Or, if you're just looking for the best GoPro price possible, we've got you covered as well. 

The best free screen recorder 2020: record or stream from your screen

We've tested and ranked the best free screen recorders that make it easy to record everything that's happening on your PC, complete with commentary and annotations if you want.

It's important to choose the right free screen recorder depending on what you intend to do with the footage you capture. Different recorders offer a range of differing features, can save captures in varying formats, or capture footage from external sources such as a webcam – and some even give you the opportunity to upload to the internet directly from within the program. Some run nicely on average hardware, while others are more demanding. The point is that there is plenty of choice.

No matter what you're hoping to do with footage captured from your computer, you need the right tool for the job. And this is where our look at the best free screen recorders can help – take a look and see which one is best for you.

The best free screen recorders at a glance

  1. OBS Studio
  2. FlashBack Express
  3. Apowersoft Free Online Screen Recorder
  4. Debut Video Capture
  5. ShareX

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OBS Studio


If you’re a keen gamer, OBS Studio is easily the best screen recorder for you. Unlike the hugely popular FRAPS (which only lets you record for 30 seconds at a stretch unless you’ve bought a license, and applies a watermark to the resulting footage), OBS Studio is open source, and completely free to use without restrictions.

OBS Studio supports both streaming and recording in high definition, with no restrictions on the number or length of your creations. You can stream live to Twitch or YouTube gaming, save projects and come back to them later, or encode your footage in FLV format and save it locally.

Because OBS Studio can record directly from your graphics card, it’s able to capture games running in full-screen mode (many other screen recorders can only record if the game is windowed), with customizable hotkeys to control the recording. OBS Studio can also make full use of multi-core CPUs for improved performance, and can record at 60FPS (or even higher).

It might take a little while to set it up exactly how you want, but OBS Studio is by far the best and most powerful screen recorder for gamers.

Read our full review: OBS Studio

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Flashback Express


OBS Studio is our top choice for recording from a desktop or webcam, but Flashback Express comes an extremely close second. Despite being a free version of a paid program, FlashBack Express won't put ugly watermarks over your recordings or impose time limits, and it's packed with features and tools that rival many premium programs. Its interface is less intimidating than OBS Studio, so if you've never used a screen recorder before, it's an excellent choice.

You can record from your whole screen, a window, a selected area, or a webcam. Once you’ve finished, your recording will appear in a simple editor, where you can crop and trim it to suit your needs, then export it to YouTube, an FTP server, or your PC.

That’s all fairly standard fare for a free screen recorder, but take a minute to dive into Flashback’s advanced options and you’ll find a wealth of thoughtfully designed settings that will make your desktop recordings look truly professional. The recorder can automatically obscure passwords entered on screen, replace your silly wallpaper with a plain one, hide messy desktop icons, and highlight your mouse pointer to make it easier to follow. There's also a dedicated gaming mode that lets you define the number of frames recorded per second.

There’s no limit on the length of your recordings unless you choose to set one, which can be useful if there’s a chance you might accidentally leave the recorder running. You can also choose to break long recordings up into chunks – a brilliant touch that helps you avoid creating huge, unwieldy files. Your recordings won’t be watermarked, either.

Following a recent update, Flashback Express can export in WMV, AVI and MP4 formats, eliminating the need for a separate video converter, and it no longer requires a free license key for activation – just install the software and you're ready to start recording.

Developer Blueberry Software has also released a free screen recorder designed specifically for games – FBX. This recorder captures HD in-game footage, with hardware acceleration for AMD and Nvidia cards, and Intel CPUs.

If you're thinking about upgrading to FlashBack Pro, Blueberry software is offering TechRadar readers an exclusive 25% discount.

Read our full review: Flashback Express

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Apowersoft Free Online Screen Recorder


If you want to record a presentation, software demonstration or tutorial, give Apowersoft Free Online Screen Recorder a try. It's a browser-based tool, which means it's not suitable for games, but for any other tasks it's ideal.

The first time you use Apowersoft Free Online Screen Recorder, you'll be prompted to download a small launcher application. You'll then be provided with a control bar packed with more options than you'll find in most desktop screen recording software. You can capture footage from your desktop or a webcam, and record audio from your PC, microphone, both or neither.

You can record the whole screen, select an area manually or choose one of the preset resolutions – ideal if you’re recording a clip for YouTube, for example, and don’t want to use a separate video editor to resize it later.

Apowersoft Free Online Screen Recorder also offers customizable keyboard shortcuts for speed and convenience. You can choose whether or not to include the cursor in the recording and take your pick from a range of output formats including MP4, WMV, AVI, MOV and many more. You can even add annotations during the recording.

Once you’re done, you can save the recording as a video file or GIF, upload it directly to YouTube or Vimeo, or send it to Google Drive or Dropbox. You can also edit the clip. Selecting this option will download an additional component – Apowersoft Video Editor – which lets you make simple adjustments before exporting your video in your preferred format. A truly exceptional tool.

Note that the 'Download desktop version' button links to a program called Apowersoft Screen Recorder Pro. This is a trial version of a premium application, and is more limited than Online Screen Recorder.

Read our full review: Apowersoft Free Online Screen Recorder

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Debut Video Capture


Debut Video Capture is a new addition to our roundup of free screen recorders, and although its slightly dated design does it few favors, it's an extremely powerful program that can do much more than just capture what's happening on your PC monitor.

In addition to basic screen recording (with no time limits or watermarks), Debut Video Capture can also record footage from external devices, including webcams and security cameras. It can even record on a regular schedule, which means it can become the main hub of a home security system. Not too shabby for a program that's totally free for personal use.

There are no post-production editing tools, but you can apply filters and add your own captions and watermarks before you begin recording. There's no option for exporting videos directly to YouTube or Facebook, but they can be saved in all the main formats, including MP4, MOV and AVI (to name just three).

Debut Video Capture is currently in public beta, so we look forward to seeing the final release version with a lick of extra polish soon.

Read our full review: Debut Video Capture

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ShareX


ShareX is an open source app for capturing still screen grabs and recording videos. There are no watermarks or time limits to worry about, but the interface isn't the most intuitive in the world so you’ll be best off using keyboard shortcuts. For quick reference, you can start a recording by tapping Shift + Print Screen, and stop it again using Ctrl + Shift + Print Screen.

You can also use this free screen recorder to save your capture as a GIF rather than a video file, which can be extremely useful for sharing on forums and social media.

Not only is ShareX a brilliant free screen recorder, it can also capture an entire scrolling webpage, capture and identify text via OCR, and even capture your screen according to a schedule.

Another of its best features is the ability to send your captured grabs and videos straight to a file-sharing or social media site. There’s a vast array of options, which you can check out on the project’s site.

Unfortunately, ShareX doesn’t support taking screen grabs or recordings from games running in full-screen mode. Other than that, it’s a superb screen recorder that will serve you extremely well.

Watch our rundown of our favourite free video editors: 

How to watch Doctor Who New Year Special online: stream for free from the UK or abroad

To think, we're about to wrap up another year and enter 2020. So what's the perfect way to celebrate? A big party? Celebrations with the entire family? Or maybe you just want to watch the Doctor Who New Years Special online - surely the best way to start a new year!

And considering Whovians have had to hold out an entire year since the last time they got to see a new dose of Doctor Who action, this will be at the top of most people's festive TV watching plans.

And some even better news - this episode is set to be one of the biggest and longest in the show's entire history, so big in fact that they've split it into two parts just to fit all of that action.

Of course, Doctor Who is normally somewhat of a Christmas tradition, moving from its Christmas Day slot into the New Year. So for those losing their favorite Christmas past-time, this double bill action will be just the news you were looking for.

We've done the research, tracked down times, locations and everything you need to know to watch Doctor Who New Year Special online and listed it all below. We've even got options for those out of the UK while the episode airs!

How to watch Doctor Who New Year special online for free in the UK:

Ready to catch Doctor Who in all of its glory once again? Tune into BBC One on New Year's Day at 6.55pm to see it all go down. And then lucky us! There's a follow up episode coming along on Sunday, January 5.

Rather watch the episode from your laptop, tablet, mobile or other device? Luckily, that's still possible. Simply head to either the BBC iPlayer app or the TVPlayer service. Both are completely free to use and will give full access to both New Year Doctor Who episodes.

Stream Doctor Who from anywhere else in the world for free:

Away on holiday for New Year's Day or currently living abroad? Sadly, this will mean the Doctor Who episodes are geo-blocked for you. Luckily there's an easy solution to remedy this.

All you have to do is appear like you're back in the UK thanks to the use of a VPN. A VPN is a tool that alters your IP address to make it look like you're somewhere else - perfect for trying to stream TV.

Our vote for the best VPN service goes to ExpressVPN but how do you install one and how can that be used to watch Doctor Who New Year Special online? Read on to answer all of these questions.

How to watch Doctor Who in the US

Watch old episodes of Doctor Who online

New to the Doctor Who franchise? There's a lot to catch up on but luckily, no matter where you are, it's easy to watch all of the Doctor Who episodes:

Watch all the series of 'new' Doctor Who from the UK

Doctor Who has a very long history and unfortunately there is no easy way to watch every episode ever. However, BBC has stepped on up in heroic fashion to offer you everything since the show returned in 2005. That means you can catch up a wealth of content over on BBC iPlayer.

The show was also free to watch on the Amazon Prime subscription for a while but will now cost you per episode if you look to go that way. Looking for a full session of binge-watching? Britbox will be the way to go, with all the classic Doctor Who dating from its first ever episodes in the 60s. However, Britbox will require a VPN to circumvent its USA and Canada geo-restriction – scroll up for all the info on that.

Watch previous Doctor Who seasons online in the US

Doctor Who fans Stateside can also revisit old episodes of the programme via the Britbox service mentioned above.

What is Amazon Kinesis?

A constant flow of information in business is more like a firehose than any of us want to imagine. It’s a steady stream, often bursting at the seams, and it doesn’t let up. Tracking and managing that firehose of data can be a Herculean task because you’re always playing catch-up -- analyzing the data after it has been transmitted and generating reports at a later date. The problem, of course, is that “the later date” never comes and sometimes we process reams and reams of data, store it and archive it, without ever really analyzing it.

Amazon Kinesis is a real-time cloud analytics engine that collects, analyzes, and reports on data transmission in your company as it happens, using the power of cloud computing services. You can think of it as a pipe that connects two firehoses -- the data comes in, Amazon Kinesis can analyze it as it transmits, and then the data keeps flowing. Instead of using an analytics dashboard or generating that are only helpful later, you can make business decisions and respond to data flows in real-time.

As an example of this, think about a vast multiplayer gaming system where thousands or even millions of gamers participate online. Talk about a steady flow of data. There are thousands of data requests in terms of player movements, rewards they collect, and achievements in the game not to mention the transactional data -- what they purchase in the game and their records in terms of what they can access and how they pay for their membership.

For a company running a gaming network like that, it’s easy to see how complex the interactions are between gamers, the network, and the IT infrastructure management required to host the game. Amazon Kinesis tracks the interactions at every level as it happens. For example, if there’s a new high-score for a multiplayer battle -- say, completing a level in record time or defeating every opponent -- Amazon Kinesis can report on this information within seconds.

For other data throughput scenarios, real-time analysis and reporting are incredibly valuable. This can include scenarios such as connected smart home devices and Internet of Things devices, medical records for a large hospital chain, data collected from a car and analyzed for machine learning application such as autonomous driving, or even on a website to find out exactly which sections of an e-commerce website someone visits and where they click.

Benefits of Amazon Kinesis

One of the key benefits to Amazon Kinesis is that the business decision-makers, developers, analysts, and data scientists are all better informed and able to make better (and faster) decisions. The firehose of data is not so overwhelming. The rich analytics and business intelligence is all available right away, not just as part of a report or a dashboard that summarizes findings. There’s no need to wait until all of the data is collected and put under a microscope because the microscope is constantly looking at the data as it flows on the network.

There are quite a few practical benefits to this, starting with the ability to improve your service. In the case of the multiplayer gaming system, there are tradition benefits such as reporting back to the user on high-scores and achievements, but perhaps even more importantly it means companies can examine and problems on the system in real-time and deal with them as they occur, not after the problems have caused users to unsubscribe.

Another practical benefit has to do with the speed of decision making. Because the analytics are provided in real-time as they happen, companies can then make real-time decisions about that data. In the example of the autonomous car, an automaker might run a simulation in a crowded urban area to see how the robotic vehicle performs, and make decisions about the GPS fleet tracking, location data and the sensors that track how the car adjusts its speed.

In a traditional model, where data is summarized later, the automaker might run simulations and then analyze the data later. One reason this is sometimes true has to do with the scope of the needs for data discovery and reporting. Some companies just can’t manage and maintain the infrastructure required for real-time data analytics. That’s another major advantage to use Amazon Kinesis because the service can scale according to your real-time data analysis needs. There’s no need to build-out the infrastructure first or to scale p or down for each new project.

This also helps tremendously with the costs. Typically, real-time data analytics is complex, difficult to manage, and requires high-end servers, networks, and vast amounts of online storage but Amazon Kinesis can scale according to the project needs and scope. Yet the costs are related to the actual analytics you perform. With traditional batch processing for data analytics, one that is housed and analyzed in a traditional on-premise data center, that’s just not the case.

WhatsApp will stop working on certain phones on January 1

If you own a Windows phone, you might want to look for a replacement in the January sales, because WhatsApp is ending support for Windows 10 Mobile imminently.

You won't just stop receiving updates and new features. According to Facebook (WhatsApp's parent company), after December 31 you will be unable to use the app on your device at all.

There's no need to panic, though. While it's not as convenient, you will still be able to log into WhatsApp by visiting the site in your phone's web browser. You could also use Telegram or Skype to wish your loved ones a happy 2020.

Bad news for older phones

As MSPowerUser reports, WhatsApp is also ending support for older iOS and Android devices, though owners of these phones have a little longer to upgrade. Handsets running iOS 7 or older, and Android 2.3.7 and older, will lose access to WhatsApp on February 1.

All these devices are relatively old. There have been no new Windows 10 Mobile handsets since 2015, and iOS 7 and Android 2.3.7 are from 2013 and 2010 respectively.

Windows 10 Mobile still has a base of dedicated users who have hung onto their handsets, and even petitioned Microsoft to build a Surface Phone so they would have an alternative to Apple and Google, but the platform's days are well and truly numbered. The forthcoming Microsoft Surface Duo (which Microsoft refuses to call a phone, even though it can make calls and fits neatly into one hand) will run Android instead, and the company seemingly has no plans to develop a new operating system for phones.

Cybersecurity threats to watch out for

The internet can be a hostile environment. The threat of cyberattack is ever-present as new vulnerabilities are released and a commodity of tools are produced to exploit them. Therefore, the pressure on organisations (and their employees) to protect customer data and defend against attacks, is mounting.

But aside from using Firewalls and antivirus software, how can we expect businesses, especially smaller businesses with limited security budgets and skills, to keep on top of evolving threats? 

As our 2019 Nastiest Malware List highlights, cyberattacks are becoming more advanced and difficult to detect. From ransomware strains to cryptomining campaigns – that deliver the most attack payloads beyond phishing – cybercriminals are making better use of stolen, personal information available to craft more convincing and targeted attacks.

Ultimately, what this means is that doing nothing is no longer an option. It’s time that organisations step up, learning how to spot potential threats and the implications behind these attack tactics. This starts with understanding the ‘nastiest’ threats out there today that are leaving businesses at risk. 

Botnets: delivering mass disruption

Botnets have continued to dominate the infection attack chain in 2019. No other type of malware was responsible for delivering more ransomware and cryptomining payloads. 

Emotet, which was the most prevalent malware of 2018, held onto that notorious distinction into 2019. While it was briefly shut down in June, Emotet returned from the dead in September, and remains the largest botnet to date, delivering various malicious payloads.

Trickbot has been partnering with banking Trojan groups like IcedID and Ursif in 2019. Its modular infrastructure makes it a serious threat for any network it infects and, when combined with Ryuk ransomware, it's one of the more devastating targeted attacks of 2019.

Dridex was once one of the most prominent banking trojans. Now it acts as an implant in the infection chain with the Bitpaymer ransomware and is achieving alarming success.

The triple threat of Emotet, Trickbot and Ryuk

Ransomware has been around for nearly a decade and it should come as no surprise that it’s still a firm favourite amongst cybercriminals. Ransomware remains a top threat, adopting a more targeted model last year. Small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) are easy prey and make up most of its victims. 

And one of the most menacing ransomware evolutions comes in the form of the ‘triple threat’ attack, involving Emotet, Trickbot and Ryuk. In terms of financial damage, this is probably the most successful chain of 2019. With more targeted, reconnaissance-based operations, they now assign a value to targeted networks post-infection will extort them accordingly after deploying ransomware.

As far as other ransomware strains are concerned, GandCrab is one of the most successful examples of ransomware-as-a-service (RaaS) to date, with profits in excess of $2 billion. While Crysis (aka Dharma) makes its second consecutive appearance on our Nastiest Malware list. This ransomware was actively distributed in the first half of 2019, with almost all infections we observed distributed through RDP compromise.




Personalised phishing

Email-based malware campaigns grow in their complexity and believability dramatically this year. Phishing became increasingly more personalised and extortion emails have begun claiming to have captured lude behaviour using compromised passwords.

Business Email Compromise (BEC) attacks also surged in 2019. Individuals who are responsible for sending payments or purchasing gift cards were targeted through spoof email accounts impersonating company executives or familiar parties. Victims are often tricked into giving up wire transfers, credentials, gift cards and more.

What many employees don’t realise is that often, the biggest security concern at the office is one of their co-workers, not a hacker in some remote location. A lack of best practices like poor domain administration, being reactive, not proactive, reuse and sharing of passwords, and lack of multi-factor authentication all mean bad actors may already be ‘phishing’ amongst them.

Cryptomining and Cryptojacking

Cryptojacking (also called malicious cryptomining) is an emerging online threat that hides on a computer or mobile device and uses the machine’s resources to “mine” forms of online money known as cryptocurrencies. It’s a menace that can take over web browsers and compromise all kinds of devices, from desktops and laptops, to smartphones and even network servers. And according to Webroot’s research, these attacks rise and fall with the relative market cap of cryptocurrency price. The largest campaign of cryptojacking this year is through the ‘Retadup’ attacks and the most innovative was ‘Hidden Bee’. 

Hidden Bee tactics have a complex and multi-layered internal structure that is unusual among cybercrime toolkits, making it an interesting addition to the threat landscape. It first emerged last year with IE exploits and has now evolved into payloads inside JPEG and PNG images through Steganography and WAV media formats flash exploits. The additional difficulty in the analysis is introduced by the fact that the URLs and encryption keys are never reused and work only for a single session.

Whereas Retadup, is a cryptomining worm, that first started last year and was removed in August by Cybercrime Fighting Center (C3N) of the French National Gendarmerie, after they took control of the malware’s command and control server. It stealthily uses a computer’s processor to mine cryptocurrency, which generates money for the operators. It’s also able to run other types of malware, such as ransomware, and is commonly spread via attachments, file-sharing networks and links to malicious websites. Peak infection counts had Retadup on over 800k machines simultaneously.

Closing critical security gaps

These nastiest threats highlight how a comprehensive approach to endpoint security is needed now more than ever, to keep up with these various and complex attack models. Attackers may be using the same strains of malware, but they are making better use of stolen personal information available for more personalised threats. As a result, organisations need to adopt a layered security approach and not underestimate the power of consistent security training as they work to improve their cyber resiliency and protection.

After all, a business that practices good risk management not only protects its reputation, intellectual property and data, but will also offer its customers a measure of assurance making them attractive to do business with.

These Oculus Go deals make virtual reality even cheaper in January Sales

If you're curious about entering the world of virtual reality in 2020, you'll want to start with these excellent Oculus Go deals. The cheap VR headset is currently £50 less on Amazon, with the deal spanning both the 32GB and 64GB models, meaning you can pick up an Oculus Go deal for just £149 in the January Sales

You're getting access to an amazing world of virtual reality experiences, though you won't find the entire Oculus store available on the Go. This is a slimmed down experience with the price tag to match, so you'll still be playing fantastic games and have access to a wide range of virtual experiences and streaming but don't expect the full library of the Quest or Rift straight from the off. 

Instead, this headset is geared towards the curious or simply those who don't want to splash out on an expensive PC to run their virtual reality - which makes these cheap Oculus Go deals even better.

Today's best Oculus Go deals for January sales

It's not the first time we've seen these headsets at such low prices: the 32GB model reached £149.99 over Black Friday, and continues to hover around that price, though we expect it will shoot back up to its RRP before the year is out, if not very early in 2020.

The 64GB model is also only £199.99, down from £249.99 – we saw it drop briefly to £189.99 but it's still a decent saving on an entry-level VR headset, and less than half the price of the more premium Oculus Quest.

If you're not in the UK, you can see the cheapest Oculus Go prices in your region below:

Digital identity: enabling the new economy

As our lives become increasingly dependent on the internet, establishing trust becomes vital to society. Yet, the old ways of documenting and verifying trust are no longer fit for purpose: documents get faked; static data gets hacked; and consumers continue to opt for convenience over security. Hackers and malware remain ever present threats and consumers still need to use antivirus software.

Close your eyes, and picture Britain in 1939. Bracing for a Second World War, the country introduces military conscription and the National Registration Bill, requiring every citizen to carry a national identity card at all times. One single document – one piece of information – to verify that you are who you say you are. 

Fast forward 80 years, past multiple technological breakthroughs: the industrialisation of fossil fuels; commercial aviation; smart grids and electricity storage; global telecommunications; and of course, the internet. The march of technology never stops, and we’re now propelling ourselves towards post-digital life, living in smart cities and connected homes; working in the automated age; moving and spending across borders. 

These global shifts have already radically re-shaped the way we live. Yet, the ways we establish trust and verify identity remain stuck in the past, primarily still linked to government databases such as the electoral roll, and private sector datasets like credit scores. 

You could say that the internet, which emerged to become the dominant technological platform of our time – was built without identity in mind.

A connected world

As the public and private sectors wake up to the power and potential of a connected world, more and more questions arise. How can credit card processing truly be verified, when the seller can’t see the buyer? How can an organisation know you are who you claim to be, when you sign up for a new service online? And as we build our lives around an increasingly complex Internet of Things (IoT), a sprawling platform that anonymises and connects together our digital breadcrumb trails, how do we create trust? 

Where does this leave us today? In a clear transition phase. The private sector now walks the tightrope of balancing experience with endpoint security, as the public sector tries to keep pace and create governance that protects without hindering innovation. Meanwhile, technology pioneers are stitching together a new layer in our connected world – a layer of trusted, global data that bring the concept of identity into this century and future-proof it for the next.

This evolution in identity management means it’ll take a step-change in the data points we use and the way we use them, to power trust in the digital economy. A wave of new approaches and data sources will be used to not only protect both sides of each online and offline interaction, but also provide context around an individual’s background and behaviour. As our digital identity comprises an increasingly rich set of contextual data points, organisations will be able to verify not only identity, but authenticity – bringing a new type of trust to online interactions and enabling them to infuse due diligence with data intelligence.

Proving who you are with your biological characteristics is another next step we are seeing, in this evolution of identity. As the era of smartphones and wearables makes technology more personal than ever, advances in the availability and reliability of biometric technologies – that measure unique physical characteristics such as an individual’s face, fingerprint or behavioural biometrics – will bring us a lot closer to the ability to verify the identity of almost anyone, anywhere in the world, at any time.

Beyond biometrics

Other emerging, horizontal technologies will also become increasingly prevalent. Microservices linked up through a platform approach will connect disparate data and services together; static verification will power ongoing, ‘ambient’ authentication; distributed ledgers could become an effective way to decentralise ownership and balance the demands of privacy and convenience; Machine Learning (ML) and augmented intelligence will help organisations make faster, more accurate decisions on how best to identify their customers.

That’s not to say there won’t be risks, too. The implementation of new verification technologies won’t be seamless, and communicating their value will be key. Pilots of facial recognition technology by law enforcement, for example, have triggered the kind of backlash we often see when disruptive technologies begin to establish a ‘new normal’ in business and daily life. In this case, as our digital identity trails fragment and tracking crime becomes more complex, it’s hard to imagine a future where these technologies are not used widely. The private sector already embraces new forms of identity verification for employee monitoring, and it benefits consumers every single day from checking their bank balance to ordering a food delivery – the services they use are vastly more flexible, convenient and secure for it.

Clearly, through all of this transformation we will see a consistent debate over data privacy and a constant battle for data security. It will truly take a combined effort to educate citizens on the fundamentals of data security, and stay one step ahead of cyber-criminals – ensuring that contextual, connected identity intelligence is a safe, secure layer in the new economy and our post-digital world.

  • Stay safe and anonymous online with the best VPN.

2019's 'Phone Deal of the Year' remains the best SIM only plan for the 2020 January sales

Ben Stokes, Olivia Colman, Margaret Atwood/Bernardine Evaristo. They all took home some prestigious prizes in 2019. And phone network Three joined in the back-slapping fun when it won the prize for 'Phone Deal of the Year' at October's Mobile Choice Consumer Awards.

Its unlimited data SIM only deal took home the gong for the second time in three years, which is obviously great news for Three. But the even better news for you is that you can still get the offer now.

So that means absolutely unlimited data, calls and texts for a mere £18 per month. In a SIM only deals market that seems to get fiercer and fiercer by the day, Three's all-you-can-eat offer remains our favourite of the lot.

We've got more details about the offer below or, if monthly bills of £18 still sound a bit on the high side, keep scrolling to see what other SIM only deals are out there right now.

Three's award winning SIM only deal:

What does a SIM only deal with Three offer?

If you haven't already been won over by this amazing offer from Three then you'll be excited to hear that the network doesn't shy away from offering up some extra incentives as well.

Whether that be free exclusive prizes or extra roaming. You can see all of best parts of a Three SIM only deal or Three mobile deals down below.

  • Wuntu - Exclusive offers and freebies with Three's rewards app
  • Go Roam - Roaming abilities in 71 worldwide countries at no extra cost
  • Travel Swagger - Get travel upgrades with Easyjet with bag drop and early boarding

What other SIM only deals are out there?

£18 per month for unlimited data is undeniably great value, but you can trim your bills even more. In fact, you can get them all the way down to a fiver a month with iD Mobile, if you can manage on 1GB of data.

Our other go-to recommendation at the moment comes from the lesser-known Smarty. With two limited time offers, it is attracting swathes of new customers its way. Choose from either 30GB data for a tenner, or go all out on 50GB for £15 per month. Fantastic value that gets even better when you discover that you'll be put on a 30-day rolling contract that you can break whenever's convenient for you.

So is this the End of WhatsApp for Windows Phone?

It would be disheartening to all the Windows Phone users to know that WhatsApp is officially ending support for the mobile platform managed by Microsoft. Although the Facebook-owned company has removed the support for Windows mobile, WhatsApp will continue to work on the Windows device but wouldn’t be receiving any updates. All the Windows users […]

The post So is this the End of WhatsApp for Windows Phone? appeared first on PhoneRadar.

Top five trends that will shape the technology sector in UAE in 2020

With 2019 been a challenging and a transition year, how is 2020 going to be for the information and communications technology in the UAE and what the top trends are that will shape the industry.

Jyoti Lalchandani, vice-president and regional managing director for research firm International Data Corporation (IDC), told in an exclusive to TechRadar Middle East that ICT spending in the UAE is expected to increase by 3.80% to $16.84b compared to $16.22b a year ago.

The research firm has revised its forecast for this year from $16.7b due to a slowdown in the telecommunications sector.

He said that telecom services are feeling the impact of weak consumer confidence and a slowdown in mobile data services.

Even in 2020, the telecom sector is expected to grow the slowest at 1.01% while devices and infrastructure sectors are expected to grow close to 6% and software and IT services (hardware and support services, consulting services, training, education, system integration services, managed services, outsourcing) are expected to grow close to 8%.

 “Commercial segment is looking more positive than the consumer space. The consumer side is going to face pressure due to weak consumer confidence, uptake of trade between the countries, retail, real estate, hospitality,” he said.

On the commercial segment, he said that the services market is growing, driven by strong uptake in cloud-based services, interesting movements on the systems and storage side.

The shifting trends across the globe, he said is that enterprise customers are taking a more cautious approach when investing and in expanding. There is a number of variables such as assumption around global trade, will oil prices be flat or is it going to fluctuate, regional political uncertainty, cost of living index and economic growth.

However, he said that organisations are investing in technology to drive certain things.

“They are investing in technology to get operational efficiency, to cut cost and are investing in Opex-based models such as cloud, and create new revenue streams using AI and cognitive technologies,” he said.

Moreover, he said that people are looking at Expo 2020 and investments regarding it are almost done. 

With 5G gaining adoption, the industry is going to see a significant intake of AI and the internet of things.

Top five trends in 2020

1. Cloud

Public cloud services are seeing a big uptake. The public cloud market is expected to grow by 35% to $406m compared to $299m this year.

Two-thirds of the organisations will approach the cloud through a hybrid model. Organisations in public and government sectors, retail, utilities, transportation, wholesale distribution, hospitality are on the public cloud.

Due to some of the regulatory challenges, banking and financial services and some of the mission-critical applications rely on building their private cloud infrastructure.

The overall business environment is a strong driver for the uptake in cloud services. CFOs love it as it is opex-based and organisation line of business loves it because they get agility and speed. IT organisations love it because of the scale it provides while channels love it because of the “lift and shift” approach as companies move from on-premises to the cloud.  

The on-premise [non-cloud] spending is declining quite rapidly and a lot of spending is moving to the cloud as a subscription-based model. Speed and agility are the key drivers for the cloud.

There is going to be a consolidation in the public cloud space to key four or five players. Cost is going to be a key factor when moving to the cloud for organisations. 

2. Digital transformation

Organisations are getting a bit more aggressive on digital transformation. A lot of pilot projects will enter the mainstream.

A lot of projects and initiatives are around transforming the customer experience. Organisations are leveraging some of the technologies to enrich the customer experience.

Some of the traditional IT areas such as devices and infrastructure are slowing down and companies are using the investment to drive adoption of more disruptive technologies such as artificial intelligence, robotic process automation, internet of things, big data analytics, blockchain and cloud to cut cost and drive more efficiency.

About 25% to 30% of large enterprises are currently in the process of digital transformation, investing in the third platform such as social, mobile, cloud and big data to do one of four things – to be operationally efficient, more agile, create new experiences for customers and create new revenue streams. It is a five to eight-year journey.

Initially, blockchain started off to facilitate a lot of trade financing deals between banks. It hasn’t got a lot of widespread adoption. A lot of the use cases happened in between banks to banks, Smart Dubai and Real Estate Regulatory Agency. The next phase is called the mature of a technology.

The blockchain technology will be matured when you have high volume and low-value transactions. Currently, a lot of the blockchain investments happen in low volume and high-value transactions.

In the next three to four years, blockchain will be embedded into the compute and that will open a significant amount of opportunities.

3. Cybersecurity

Security investments continue to be a major driver for growth. One of the reasons for that is companies are one of the most challenging areas for CIOs and IT.

Now, even CEOs have security as one of their top priority areas. 

Given the region in which we operate due to geopolitical issues and some of the malware that is taking place, security is becoming an important part of the agenda for banks and public sectors.

4. AI and cognitive technologies

Organisations are quite strongly investing in AI and cognitive technologies such as chatbots, analytics and robotic process automation to cut cost, boost operational efficiencies by taking out some of the repetitive tasks humans do and automating it.

The cognitive AI spend is expected to grow by 25.63% to $73.66m compared to $58.63m this year.

Banks, utilities, RTA, Dewa and public sectors have deployed AI and cognitive in a big way.

The AI and cognitive market in the UAE is set to grow between 25% and 30% year over year in the next two to three years. The impact of AI, along with 5G and IoT, will be extremely powerful.

IoT is already embedded into a lot of the technologies in manufacturing and production, fleet management, etc. IoT has become a part of the ecosystem now.

AI is going to automate several tasks and roles while creating new roles that are not yet defined today. It will create more jobs than eliminating.

To run AI and cognitive technologies, the industry needs a lot of data scientists and new skills that do not exist today. It will also force organisations to reskill some of their existing staff and resources. A lot of big organisations are already doing that and investing in training. In the autonomy phase, the machine decides, analyses and executes based on guiding principles that are set.

The overall economic situation is a key driver for that and due to lack of skills. So, these kinds of technologies play nicely into the story. It works 24/7 operation and lesser mistakes or risks compared to humans, so productivity and efficiency are a lot more at a lesser cost.

A lot of private and public sectors have leveraged some of these technologies to automate and cut costs. So, we are seeing an explosion in the digital workforce.

5. Restructuring

Organisations are making fundamental changes in their organisational focus areas and priorities. Several companies are resetting their plans, given the overall economic environment across the region, in rightsizing in several areas, especially in banking, retail, hospitality, banking and financial services.

Organisations need to rightsize in the next two to three years as it is going to be challenging. Organisations are holding back on investments and cutting staff to adapt to the business environment.

Consolidation is taking place in the banking sector and retail margins are under pressure, re-export from Dubai to other regions is down and there is an impact on financial [insurance] services and education sectors.

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