A big WhatsApp Desktop update comes to Windows 11, making the web version pointless

While 2021 brought the WhatsApp Desktop app to Windows 11, alongside a new look in January, there's new features about to appear in the beta version.

The new update of the beta version, that’s been available on the Microsoft Store for Windows 10 and Windows 11 since November, showcases message reactions and the ability to permanently archive chats.

These are two features that users had been long-requesting, and while they arrived in the iOS and Android versions, they were yet to arrive for Windows 11, until recently.

However, with video calling in the desktop app, and GIFs having just arrived after the web version has had the ability for the last year, it makes us wonder if there's any point in using WhatsApp in our web browsers anymore. 


Analysis: Time to move on from WhatsApp Web

Using WhatsApp on the web on your PC or Mac has been the norm for years now. Using a tab in your web browser to quickly reply to messages, instead of reaching for your phone, is very useful.

However, there's times when you can discover its limits, such as missing reactions and video calling.

This is where the desktop app has already superseded the web version on Windows and Mac. Calling your contacts through audio or video will be a big benefit to many, and while GIFS are already on the web version, they feel faster and display in a higher quality compared to how they show on the web browser.

It's at the point where we're already making sure that the app starts up alongside Steam, Chrome, and more when we switch on our PCs.

Reactions and the method to keep archived chats, archived, are only going to spur users to move away from the web version as well, and as far as we're concerned, any way to reduce the tabs in our web browser is a benefit regardless to make them more manageable.

Via WindowsLatest

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A big WhatsApp Desktop update comes to Windows 11, making the web version pointless

While 2021 brought the WhatsApp Desktop app to Windows 11, alongside a new look in January, there's new features about to appear in the beta version.

The new update of the beta version, that’s been available on the Microsoft Store for Windows 10 and Windows 11 since November, showcases message reactions and the ability to permanently archive chats.

These are two features that users had been long-requesting, and while they arrived in the iOS and Android versions, they were yet to arrive for Windows 11, until recently.

However, with video calling in the desktop app, and GIFs having just arrived after the web version has had the ability for the last year, it makes us wonder if there's any point in using WhatsApp in our web browsers anymore. 


Analysis: Time to move on from WhatsApp Web

Using WhatsApp on the web on your PC or Mac has been the norm for years now. Using a tab in your web browser to quickly reply to messages, instead of reaching for your phone, is very useful.

However, there's times when you can discover its limits, such as missing reactions and video calling.

This is where the desktop app has already superseded the web version on Windows and Mac. Calling your contacts through audio or video will be a big benefit to many, and while GIFS are already on the web version, they feel faster and display in a higher quality compared to how they show on the web browser.

It's at the point where we're already making sure that the app starts up alongside Steam, Chrome, and more when we switch on our PCs.

Reactions and the method to keep archived chats, archived, are only going to spur users to move away from the web version as well, and as far as we're concerned, any way to reduce the tabs in our web browser is a benefit regardless to make them more manageable.

Via WindowsLatest

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As Google Chrome 100 arrives, we tried version 1.0 on Windows 11 to see how far it’s come

In the mid-2000s, Google was known for announcing joke software for April Fools Day that we all knew wouldn't ever be made. So, when its new web browser, Google Chrome first arrived in September 2008, users had thought that the company had delayed the joke by a few months.

However, since its arrival, Chrome has seen many changes and revamps, to the point where it's the most-used web browser in the world. It's now also been made available on smartphones and tablets, further changing how we browse the web.

Google is now about to launch version 100, and as it's close to April 1, we wouldn't be surprised if there's a major new feature or two coming to the update, perhaps as a hint to its April Fool gags of yore, or to tie in with Google Mail's launch, which actually launched on April 1 2004.

With this in mind, we tracked down version 1.0 of Google Chrome and tried it in Windows 11 to see how it handles modern websites… or if it is even usable.

Using Google Chrome 1.0 in 2022

Google Chrome version 1.0 About screen in Windows 11

(Image credit: TechRadar)

The internet of 2008 was very different compared to what we use in 2022. It was a year when Apple's App Store launched alongside the iPhone 3G, and we were all still trying to get used to browsing the web on our smartphones.

Trying to play a 4K video on YouTube back then would have been an impossible task, and streaming Banjo Kazooie on Game Pass through Chrome would have been as likely as seeing Mario come to the Steam Deck in a sequel to Half Life.

After finding version 1.0.154 of Chrome, released on December 11 2008, we installed it and saw the familiar layout of the web browser, but in a shade of light blue that seemed to be a constant presence in these early versions. Tabs were still relatively new at the time, with Mozilla's Firefox, and Apple's Safari having had the feature for only a few years at the time.

But, it defined Chrome, encouraging you to press the '+' button to open multiple tabs for the sites you wanted to visit.

But this is where the troubles began for us.

Image 1 of 6

Google Chrome 1 in Windows 11

(Image credit: TechRadar)
Image 2 of 6

Google Chrome 1 in Windows 11

(Image credit: TechRadar)
Image 3 of 6

Google Chrome 1 in Windows 11

(Image credit: TechRadar)
Image 4 of 6

Google Chrome 1 in Windows 11

(Image credit: TechRadar)
Image 5 of 6

Google Chrome 1 in Windows 11

(Image credit: TechRadar)
Image 6 of 6

Google Chrome 1 in Windows 11

(Image credit: TechRadar)

As the above screenshots show, loading up our Apple Studio review brought up the text, but it was the only aspect we could decipher. Chrome 1.0 couldn't render the photos or any sections correctly. Some would load up, but they would be stretched to the point that they would be pixelated. We thought we'd go to YouTube to see how this would fare, and not only did it show the mobile version, but nothing was displaying correctly anyway; only YouTube's logo.

There were other times when we would visit other sites, and we would receive a pop-up saying 'You're using an old version, please upgrade your browser.' Ignoring this would try to display the website in question regardless, but none of them worked. Ironically, searching for trees in Google was the one website that did show correctly, albeit in its mobile version.

Google Chrome 1 preferences

(Image credit: TechRadar)

Looking around Chrome 1.0.154's features, it's as barebones as you would expect for a web browser that was officially two months old at the time. There's a Preferences section, but nothing in the way of themes and web extensions that today's web browsers offer.

The idea of doing some work in this version of Chrome through Google Docs or Apple's Pages is impossible – this was an era of the internet where you'd be browsing the web to be rid of boredom or to find the answer to something.

While it was a short-lived trip using one of the first versions of Google Chrome, it's at least showed us how far Chrome – and the internet itself – has come.

In 2022, playing Sea of Thieves or watching the upcoming Star Wars series Obi-Wan Kenobi in 4K, is seen as a normal task in Chrome. After 100 versions and almost 14 years of Chrome, it only makes us wonder as to what version 200 could bring, and the devices we'll be browsing the web on then.

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As Google Chrome 100 arrives, we tried version 1.0 on Windows 11 to see how far it’s come

In the mid-2000s, Google was known for announcing joke software for April Fools Day that we all knew wouldn't ever be made. So, when its new web browser, Google Chrome first arrived in September 2008, users had thought that the company had delayed the joke by a few months.

However, since its arrival, Chrome has seen many changes and revamps, to the point where it's the most-used web browser in the world. It's now also been made available on smartphones and tablets, further changing how we browse the web.

Google is now about to launch version 100, and as it's close to April 1, we wouldn't be surprised if there's a major new feature or two coming to the update, perhaps as a hint to its April Fool gags of yore, or to tie in with Google Mail's launch, which actually launched on April 1 2004.

With this in mind, we tracked down version 1.0 of Google Chrome and tried it in Windows 11 to see how it handles modern websites… or if it is even usable.

Using Google Chrome 1.0 in 2022

Google Chrome version 1.0 About screen in Windows 11

(Image credit: TechRadar)

The internet of 2008 was very different compared to what we use in 2022. It was a year when Apple's App Store launched alongside the iPhone 3G, and we were all still trying to get used to browsing the web on our smartphones.

Trying to play a 4K video on YouTube back then would have been an impossible task, and streaming Banjo Kazooie on Game Pass through Chrome would have been as likely as seeing Mario come to the Steam Deck in a sequel to Half Life.

After finding version 1.0.154 of Chrome, released on December 11 2008, we installed it and saw the familiar layout of the web browser, but in a shade of light blue that seemed to be a constant presence in these early versions. Tabs were still relatively new at the time, with Mozilla's Firefox, and Apple's Safari having had the feature for only a few years at the time.

But, it defined Chrome, encouraging you to press the '+' button to open multiple tabs for the sites you wanted to visit.

But this is where the troubles began for us.

Image 1 of 6

Google Chrome 1 in Windows 11

(Image credit: TechRadar)
Image 2 of 6

Google Chrome 1 in Windows 11

(Image credit: TechRadar)
Image 3 of 6

Google Chrome 1 in Windows 11

(Image credit: TechRadar)
Image 4 of 6

Google Chrome 1 in Windows 11

(Image credit: TechRadar)
Image 5 of 6

Google Chrome 1 in Windows 11

(Image credit: TechRadar)
Image 6 of 6

Google Chrome 1 in Windows 11

(Image credit: TechRadar)

As the above screenshots show, loading up our Apple Studio review brought up the text, but it was the only aspect we could decipher. Chrome 1.0 couldn't render the photos or any sections correctly. Some would load up, but they would be stretched to the point that they would be pixelated. We thought we'd go to YouTube to see how this would fare, and not only did it show the mobile version, but nothing was displaying correctly anyway; only YouTube's logo.

There were other times when we would visit other sites, and we would receive a pop-up saying 'You're using an old version, please upgrade your browser.' Ignoring this would try to display the website in question regardless, but none of them worked. Ironically, searching for trees in Google was the one website that did show correctly, albeit in its mobile version.

Google Chrome 1 preferences

(Image credit: TechRadar)

Looking around Chrome 1.0.154's features, it's as barebones as you would expect for a web browser that was officially two months old at the time. There's a Preferences section, but nothing in the way of themes and web extensions that today's web browsers offer.

The idea of doing some work in this version of Chrome through Google Docs or Apple's Pages is impossible – this was an era of the internet where you'd be browsing the web to be rid of boredom or to find the answer to something.

While it was a short-lived trip using one of the first versions of Google Chrome, it's at least showed us how far Chrome – and the internet itself – has come.

In 2022, playing Sea of Thieves or watching the upcoming Star Wars series Obi-Wan Kenobi in 4K, is seen as a normal task in Chrome. After 100 versions and almost 14 years of Chrome, it only makes us wonder as to what version 200 could bring, and the devices we'll be browsing the web on then.

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The all-new version of Microsoft Defender Preview is available now, for free

Microsoft appears to have jumped the gun and released the latest edition of its Windows 11 security tool onto the app store early.

The Microsoft Defender Preview app can be downloaded and used free of charge, but the company has already warned it will only be free during the preview period.

In addition to providing a basic security overview, Microsoft Defender Preview gives details of security alerts that have appeared on different devices. Perhaps the most valuable feature of the app is that it makes it possible to easily check the security of a device without the need, necessarily, to have physical access to it.

Microsoft Defender Preview

In many ways, Microsoft Defender Preview is more of a security dashboard than a security app in its own right. The store listing says that the app lets you “easily manage your online security in one centralized view”, and anyone wanting to make use of the app will have to sign into a Microsoft account.

Once signed in, the app makes it possible to view the security status of any and all devices linked to that account. This can include a number of personal devices, but also devices owned by family members. Precisely what you are able to see here will depend on the type of subscription you are using after the preview period comes to an end.

Microsoft Defender Preview

(Image credit: Microsoft)

Free – for now

It is worth reiterating the fact that once the preview period comes to an end – and Microsoft has not revealed quite when this will be – the app will no longer be free. 

The company points out: “No subscription is required for Microsoft Defender Preview. In the future, Microsoft Defender will require a Microsoft 365 Family or Personal subscription”.

Some users have reported seeing a message informing them that “Microsoft Defender isn't currently available in your region”. But with no official word from Microsoft about availability, it is impossible to say which countries have failed to make the grade.

Via WindowsLatest

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There’s an all-new free version of Google Workspace for work

Workers looking to experience a host of the most popular Google Workspace software can now try for free thanks to a new offering from the company.

The new Google Workspace Essentials plan provides access to the likes of Meet, Chat, Drive, Docs, Sheets, Slides and more as the company looks to offer its online collaboration tools to more businesses than ever before.

What's more, you don't even need a Gmail account to sign up – and it's absolutely free.

Free Google Workspace

“We’re rolling out a new version designed to help people bring the apps they know and love to use in their personal lives to their work life,” Kelly Waldher, Vice President of Marketing, Google Workspace, wrote in a blog post.

“The new Google Workspace Essentials Starter Edition is a no-cost solution for business users looking to enhance teamwork and unlock innovation with secure-by-design collaboration. With Essentials Starter, we’re making it easy for employees to choose their own productivity tools and bring modern collaboration to work.”

There are some caveats to the plan, as users will only get 15GB of cloud storage, down from the usual 30GB available with the basic Google Workspace Business Starter plan, which typically costs $ 6/user/month.

There's also obviously no access to Gmail either, but users will be able to hold Google Meet video conferences of up to 100 people for up to an hour, as well as access to Spaces, Google Chat, Sheets, Slides and Docs.

The news comes as something of a surprise, given Google had recently said it would be cutting down on users accessing Google Workspace for free.

The company announced that all G Suite legacy free edition users would soon be shifted over to a paid version of Google Workspace from July 1 in order to ensure they kept access to tools such as Gmail, Meet and Docs.

This had upset users who may have recently signed up for the software, particularly non-business users facing having to pay for the first time, with Google saying that anyone not signed up to a paid subscription by the July deadline faced being locked out.

Google Workplace plans start at $ 6/user/month for its Business Starter option, with Business Standard ($ 12/user/month) and Business Plus ($ 18 /user/month) also on offer, providing an increasing level of services with the amount paid.

Google plans to automatically upgrade free users from May 1 to “an upgraded Google Workspace paid subscription”, based on its analysis of the customer's usage and the features it thinks you'll need. The company is also offering businesses who don't want to pay or upgrade the chance to export their data at no extra cost.

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Microsoft is offering a new version of its most underappreciated productivity tool for free

Microsoft wants to help us all feel a little more organized and ready for the day ahead, and it's offering a free experience of one of its least well-known productivity apps to do so.

The company has revealed users with a Microsoft account (MSA) can now try a new lightweight version of its Microsoft Lists app at no charge, to see just how it can help them.

Microsoft Lists is designed for small business and individual use, and the new preview version of the app looks to help provide a clear and straightforward view of all your important tasks in one single place.

Microsoft Lists preview

“It’s time to liberate yourself from coordination chaos,” Microsoft wrote in a blog post announcing the news. “Time to clear your brain space and get organized. In short, it’s time to try the Microsoft Lists – MSA Preview.”

Previously only available as part of a paid Microsoft 365 subscription, the company says the new preview app is designed around the core of the existing service, but also adds in a few new tools, including tabbed views, sharing from within a Person column, add images inline and more.

It believes Microsoft Lists can be helpful across a huge range of tasks, from business-focused tasks such as internal events planning, job applications and employee onboarding, to more home-oriented activities such as vacation planning or even recipe collecting.

The app allows users to share all their plans with co-workers, family or friends, and can be customized in a wide range of formats to give users exactly the view or approach they need.

The company is offering 200,000 free trial accounts on a first-come, first-served basis, and you'll need a Microsoft account to sign up. During preview, users can try up to 50 lists, with up to 2,000 items/list, although there is also a 200MB limit for files, video, and image storage per list.

Customers planning to use Microsoft Lists with a business account and personal Microsoft account will need to switch between accounts to see each set of lists.

“We’re excited to see what sorts of information tracking goodness you create during preview, and how you share it all,” the company added.

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This all-new version of Microsoft Teams will take over your working life

Small businesses will now be able to utilise video conferencing software and online collaboration tool much easier with the launch of the first ever stand-alone version of Microsoft Teams.

Available now, Teams Essentials provides small businesses with an affordable meeting solution that is ideal for hybrid work environments. At just $ 4 per user per month, the software giant's new offering is one of the most competitively priced video conferencing and collaboration solutions on the market today.

“We know how difficult the past 20 months have been for small businesses,” noted Microsoft's corporate vice president of Modern Work, Jared Spataro. “They’ve had to demonstrate extreme flexibility to adapt, often with limited access to tools and technology. Teams Essentials is built specifically to meet the unique needs of small businesses, enabling them to thrive in this new era of work.”

Microsoft Teams Essentials

SMBs that sign up for Teams Essentials will be able to hold unlimited group meetings for up to 30 hours and meetings with up to 300 people but they'll also get access to 10GB of cloud storage per user.

Teams Essentials also includes all of the existing and upcoming capabilities available in the free version of Teams such as easy invitations that only require an email address, Outlook Calendar and Google Calendar integration, virtual backgrounds, Together mode, always-available chats, polls and more.

Small businesses interested in purchasing Teams Essentials subscriptions for their employees can do so directly through the Teams website or from a variety of Microsoft Cloud Partners including ALSO, Crayon, Ingram, Pax8, Rhipe, TD Synnex, Telefonica (ES), Deutsche Telekom, Vodafone (IT) and Wortmann AG.

While Teams Essentials makes sense for small businesses that want to continue using their existing office software, for just $ 1 more at $ 5 per user per month, they can sign up for Microsoft 365 Business Basic which also includes access to the web and mobile versions of Microsoft's Office apps, 1TB of cloud storage per user, business-class email, Teams meetings recordings with transcripts and more.

Looking to improve your video calls? Check out our roundups of the best video conferencing softwarebest business webcams and best headsets for conference calls

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