AT&T is shutting down its 3G network on Feb. 22, something that should only affect people with very old devices, mostly flip phones. But a subset of unlocked smartphone owners are getting caught up in this mess, and some of them don’t even know it.

The folks getting a nasty surprise are people who bought smartphones not designed for US networks. Some of them aren’t sold here, like Huawei and Xiaomi models. Those were always living on borrowed time. The really tricky ones, though, are Samsung models that look exactly like phones sold and supported in the US, but aren’t.

Gabriel Weinberg, creator of DuckDuckGo.
Enlarge / Gabriel Weinberg, creator of DuckDuckGo.

Washington Post | Getty Images

At the end of April, Apple’s introduction of App Tracking Transparency tools shook the advertising industry to its core. iPhone and iPad owners could now stop apps from tracking their behavior and using their data for personalized advertising. Since the new privacy controls launched, almost $10 billion has been wiped from the revenues of Snap, Meta Platform’s Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.

Now, a similar tool is coming to Google’s Android operating system—although not from Google itself. Privacy-focused tech company DuckDuckGo, which started life as a private search


Spam calls aren’t just a nuisance. If you answer one, you could also be scammed out of your identity or hard earned cash. Here are some of the latest ways to stop them.

Follow Rich DeMuro on Instagram for more tech news, tips and tricks.

For help, I consulted Thorin Klosowski, the privacy and security editor at Wirecutter. He recently wrote an article on stopping the calls.

“I just feel like it’s an eye roll now… people are so used to it. You kind of pull your phone out of your pocket [and say] ugh, again, and go on with


Even before the coronavirus pandemic made work from home (WFH) the norm, work-related smartphone notifications intruded in people’s personal time because they often use the same phone for work and their personal life.  

Google commissioned research firm Qualtrics to run a survey with 3,000 employees to find out what the main BYOD smartphone disruptions were, and whether Google’s Android ‘work profile’ actually helped people manage the blurring between work and personal lives under WFH conditions. 

The study found that 68{cb3fe4c54de06d7c4b8dceae281fb32e521027d1659af7adec2f427d2f5333d9} of employees use one smartphone for work and personal life. Just 32{cb3fe4c54de06d7c4b8dceae281fb32e521027d1659af7adec2f427d2f5333d9} used two smartphones while 85{cb3fe4c54de06d7c4b8dceae281fb32e521027d1659af7adec2f427d2f5333d9} of employees use

iphone 12 pro max

With iOS 14.5, you can stop apps from tracking you across the internet, so you should see fewer ads following you.

Patrick Holland/CNET

If you’ve spent any time shopping online, you’re probably familiar with the creepy feeling that arises when you click on a pair of shoes, and find that an ad for that very pair follows you on every site and app you visit for the next week. A new feature coming to iPhones in iOS 14.5 aims to keep your online life more private by giving you the option to turn off ad tracking within the apps you


One of the most frustrating aspects of Windows is the ease with which many applications like Adobe Acrobat, iTunes, and Spotify start up automatically as soon as you log into Windows, whether you need them to or not.

There are certain types of programs you want to start automatically, such as antivirus and webcam software. However, many apps unnecessarily muscle their way into your startup routine, chewing up memory and resources and potentially hampering your PC’s performance.

Don’t worry, though, because you can fight back. Windows has long offered a way for you to view and disable your startup programs.


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