Reza Pahlevi

News, tips and reviews from the experts on PCs, Windows, and more

Microsoft launches Kids Mode for Edge: Here's how to use it

Microsoft is formally launching Kids Mode for the Edge browser today, providing a protected space for kids to browse the web.

Microsoft announced what it’s calling a new, native browsing mode in February, and Kids Mode started rolling out to the stable Edge browser platform on Thursday. Edge Kids Mode is specifically designed for two different age ranges: 5-8, and 9-12. While parents need to have a Microsoft account, the kids don’t. 

Here’s what Kids Mode offers. First, within Kids Mode the Edge browser will maximize, filling the screen and preventing kids from migrating to other applications. Tracking protection is set to Strict, blocking the majority of trackers. Bing’s Safe Search is turned on, and set to Strict, preventing them from performing mature Internet searches. Ads won’t be shown on new-tab pages. Finally, only 70 kid-friendly sites are allowed, though adults have the option to block or add sites as they wish.

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PowerDVD 21 nearly completes Cyberlink's online media-sharing infrastructure

Newly added FireTV, Apple TV, and cloud versions of PowerPlayer let you stream and share your movies via Cyberlink's Cloud service with anyone on nearly any device. PowerDVD 21 itself offers only mild improvements.


The best laptops: Premium laptops, budget laptops, 2-in-1s, and more

The dogpile of new laptop technologies—AMD’s Ryzen 5000 and Intel’s Tiger Lake CPUs, plus Nvidia’s RTX 30-series mobile GPUs—are leading to a welcome rain of faster, better portable PCs, the latest of which we’ve just started reviewing. It’s still a tight market, as pandemic-fueled sales remain strong. But if you yearn for the latest and greatest, this is your time. Keep reading for the latest news and reviews. (Psst: We also have a list of all the laptops available with RTX 30-series.)

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Chip shortages will continue until 2023, superfoundry TSMC says

The world’s largest chip foundry, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC), has confirmed what you probably already feared: It’s running at maximum capacity, and yet the supply of available chips won’t be easing anytime soon.

In fact, TSMC said during a conference call Thursday local time that the company doesn’t see the supply crunch easing until 2023, according to Bloomberg. “We see the demand continue to be high,” Wei said. “In 2023, I hope we can offer more capacity to support our customers. At that time, we’ll start to see the supply chain tightness release a little bit.”

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The best CPUs for gaming

Buying a processor for a gaming rig isn’t as hard as it used to be. Now that Ryzen 5000-series and Intel’s 11th-gen Core CPUs come with more performance and cores than ever before, it’s hard to buy a stinker these days—especially because most games favor graphics firepower over CPU oomph. All that said, there are specific chips that stand out from the horde as the best gaming CPUs due to their price, performance, or nifty extras.


Jackery Explorer 1000 Portable Power Station review: Good for venturing off the grid

Power stations are a convenient way to have what amounts to a big backup battery in a compact form. The Jackery Explorer 1000 Portable Power Station is by far the largest power station I’ve reviewed, with a total capacity of over 1,000 Watt-hours and weighing in at 22 pounds. It’s big, in more ways than one.

After unboxing and hefting the Explorer 1000 out of the box, the first thing you’ll notice is the number of ports and the LCD display. The screen shows you how much power is going out and coming in if you’re charging the Explorer 1000 while alo using it. It’s also a quick and easy way to check how much charge the station has remaining with a quick press of the button next to the screen.

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5 ways to make your Samsung Galaxy S21 more like the Pixel

Samsung has risen to the top of the Android device ecosystem by offering stunning hardware, but its software lags behind the competition in some key areas. If you want to enjoy the Galaxy S21’s amazing build quality with a more Google-y software experience, you just need to make a few tweaks. Here are five ways to make your S21 more like a Pixel.

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samsung galaxy s21 google pixel home screen Ryan Whitwam/IDG

Some of the most popular Android launchers can be configured to look and work almost exactly like Google’s Pixel Launcher.

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Cord cutters: Don't buy these media streamers

These are the worst streaming players you can buy right now.