Buying a Windows laptop? Five must-have features for my next notebook

We’re about to enter peak PC buying season. The final quarter of the year is when businesses have to spend their remaining capital budget (“use it or lose it!”) and when families are likely to consider buying a new PC for the holidays.

When most people offer advice about choosing a new PC, they turn to the standard “speeds and feeds” items. Yes, you should insist on a modern CPU, enough RAM and solid-state storage to handle your expected workloads, and the right graphics processor, especially if you’re into gaming.

But the current crop of business-class notebook PCs includes a handful of important options that aren’t part of the standard spec sheet. These are features you can’t typically measure using a performance benchmark, but their impact on productivity is undeniable.

See also: My seven favorite Windows 10 features  

For my next notebook, these are the five features I plan

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Nvidia close to acquiring Arm from SoftBank for more than $40B, says WSJ

SoftBank will reportedly sell Arm to Nvidia in a deal valued at more than $40 billion in a transaction that will create a chip behemoth.

According to the Wall Street Journal, Nvidia would buy Arm with cash and stock. SoftBank bought Arm for $32 billion in a deal that was aimed at Internet of things, 5G and licensing the technology that powers the mobile industry.

Nvidia and Arm have been in exclusive talks with a deal done early next week, reported the Journal. Talks between the two companies were reported in July by the Financial Times and Bloomberg. The value of Arm has gone up since that first report, which valued a deal at more than $32 billion.

What’s unclear is how regulators around the world would view the deal. Nvidia is a graphics processor powerhouse and has moved into data centers and workloads for cloud and

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Scotland confirms launch of contact-tracing app

Days after first revealing that the country was about to join the likes of Germany, Korea, the Republic of Ireland and other countries in having such capability, the Scottish government has made the official launch of Protect Scotland, the country’s Covid-19 coronavirus contact-tracing app.

Supported by a dedicated Protect Scotland website, the app is an extra tool complementing existing person-to-person contact tracing, which remains the main component of NHS Scotland’s Test and Protect system. 

The Scottish contact-tracing technology was first announced in May 2020, just as the UK-wide NHS began the first trials of its much-delayed and yet-to-be-launched app on the Isle of Wight. Accessible on smartphones or computers, the web-based tool for the NHS in Scotland was designed to allow citizens to input details of people they have been in close contact with, and for these to be sent directly and securely to contact-tracing teams.

Designed by software

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The public's phobia of touching cash amid COVID-19 could help SoftBank popularize mobile payments in cash-addicted Japan; SoftBank has invested $1B+ in PayPay (Wataru Suzuki/Nikkei Asian Review)

Wataru Suzuki / Nikkei Asian Review:

The public’s phobia of touching cash amid COVID-19 could help SoftBank popularize mobile payments in cash-addicted Japan; SoftBank has invested $1B+ in PayPay  —  Masayoshi Son zeros in on Japan, where he is ready to lose billions in a battle to conquer cash… Read More