Monday, October 18, 2021

The tech products I still can’t live without

A small percentage of phones, tablets and laptops shipped today—perhaps a mere 2 percent—still run on software based on Internet Explorer 6.

Though technically capable of running an operating system, like Windows 10, that software remains incompatible with contemporary processors and graphics processors, like the newest iPhones. Millions of users, like me, don’t think it’s worth the cost to replace their gadgets.

So how do you use a phone that still doesn’t work? First of all, don’t connect it to the Internet.

A far better bet is to restore the operating system as-is. I can attest that doing this on Windows 7 Windows XP, Windows Vista and Windows XP, and on any other older mobile device is a painless experience. You can find information on how to restore Windows and Apple’s OS X operating systems, including restoring with Mac OS X 10.7 or 10.8, by visiting this page on the community-developed What is OS X? (Hi!), or by checking out Apple’s How to Restore Your Mac.

You can also take advantage of the option to downgrade to a newer operating system. Apple offers this upgrade path in its online store. Windows users can go to their provider’s online store. You must note that the downloading must happen offline and it can’t be done in order. It is important to check that the upgrade can be installed completely on the device.

You can use a USB device for other tasks, like the standard adapter for memory sticks and USB drives. Just make sure you’re connecting to your device’s built-in flash drive or USB connector.

Other devices can be accessed through a host-based computer with an 802.11n connection, but that’s no replacement for using wireless (802.11a/b/g/n) Wi-Fi. You can find router and connection recommendations for the latest Bluetooth technology on this page of the Wireless Home and office Alliance website.

There are other methods. My colleague Michelle Wiese Bockmann, an iPad user, suggests that you use a handheld game player that recognizes other handheld devices like tablets, which you may have owned before the original iPhones and iPads. One of the modern touch screen game players I have available to me at the moment is the Plastic Magic iPad Arcade Duel Game. It costs $19.99.

I appreciate you asking a question that I haven’t seen anyone else asking: There is nothing at all difficult about using the iPhone today, or most of the other popular smartphones that come with limited functionality, like Android-based smartphones.

But I still believe in cost-efficient hardware upgrades. In my husband’s case, the iPad Pro makes his life a lot easier. I was able to get one for him and attach it to an SD card so I could play and transfer movies and videos onto the iPad Pro. He gets more from that for less.

I have never really wanted an Android device because I enjoy the simplicity and elegance of a Windows-based computer. A computer is something you may enjoy using. For many people, a phone is something that is always with them. — Michelle

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