Blog - The Way IT is

Microsoft Surface: iPad Competitor or Waste of Time?

June 26, 2012
Steve Ballmer, CEO of Microsoft, last week announced Microsoft's first real foray into the tablet market. The "Surface" will be coming soon (although exactly when, we don't know!) and will be taking on the iPad in a big way.

But what does it do exactly and how will it compete? Well ... Microsoft have been rather sketchy with the details which is usually a bad thing. So far here is what we do know:
- 2 versions: Mobile version of Windows 8 (16gb or 32gb hard drive) and Full version of Windows 8 with Intel Core processor (32gb or 64gb hard drive)
- Very cool snappy lid with integrated magnetic keyboard.
- Built in stand at back of device

And that's about it really! No news yet on price or release date although Microsoft have said it will be "priced competitively" and the buzz in the street is around an October release.

Our opinion is that this is likely to compete well as a business device, with Office integration expected. iPads are still finding their way as a legitimate business tablet (rather than a cool device on which to take notes and show pdfs), so there is definitely space for a device which will synchronise and integrate seamlessly with your Windows desktop or laptop.

However, on the consumer side it's hard to see how it can beat the iPad with it's thousands of apps and incredibly cool vibe. We don't expect it to make too big a dent in this arena so the big boys at Apple won't be too concerned about Microsoft's new device.


How do ensure company email is never lost or deleted?

December 2, 2011
This is a question we regularlay get asked. With the advent of regulations, companies in the financial services industry are required to maintain copies of all emails sent to and received from clients. Emails now form the basis of many legal actions and so being able to maintain a record of all emails sent and received by your organisation has fast become a necessity.

But how do you know if your email is safe and what are the different options available?

There are 3 main way in which mail is de...
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Google+ to take on Facebook - who will win?

July 8, 2011
Big in the news this week was the announcement that Google are taking on Facebook with their own social network called "Google+". One of Google's major advantages (or +'s ... hence the name perhaps?) over Facebook is the promise of video chat.

With the news still resonating in our ears Facebook made their own big announcement that they are introducing Video Chat in partnership with now Microsoft-owned Skype. Google's initial excitement balloon had a great deal of air let out by this announceme...
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Is my data secure in the "cloud"?

July 4, 2011
This is a question I am getting asked more and more frequently. With cloud services now well established, businesses are now planning which services to embrace and when to jump on board. One such service is online backup, but how secure is your data with an online backup provider?

Let's start by looking at a few basic truths. Data centres are purpose-built facilities designed to host company and consumer data safely and securely. An average server in a commercial office sits behind a mid-range...
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5 Habits of Highly Effective LinkedIn Networkers

February 7, 2011
Good afternoon all. This morning I had the pleasure of presenting at the BNI London North East International Networking Week event on how to effectively use LinkedIn to expand your online networking activities. As part of my presentation I shared my 5 Habits of Highly Effective LinkedIn Networkers which I'd like to share with you:
  1. Have a Great Profile. It's really important to spend time on getting the basics right. This includes adding your picture and links to your website and twitter accoun...

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New Year ... New Challenges

January 14, 2011
Happy New Year and here's wishing you all a happy, healthy and prosperous 2011!
As the start of your year gets going it's time to take stock, evaluate and ultimately plan for the year ahead.

In today's world, IT forms the backbone of any business strategy. It's no use planning for company growth without taking into account how this growth is going to be supported. Your hardware, software, systems and processes are the cogs which keep your well-oiled business machine going.

And, of course, if yo...
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You don't need a new server

November 1, 2010
No you don't. Not anymore. With cloud-based services becoming more and more mainstream, and what with up to 20Mb broadband you really don't need an inhouse server for your small business. Let's look at a few quick reasons why:

1) Zero advantage to having an inhouse Exchange Server
In fact I'd go as far as to say you're at a disadvtange if you have an in-house Exchange server. In-house servers are more expensive to buy and maintain than hosted services, they aren't any faster and you still have ...
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Free is good ... two web services worth checking out

September 30, 2010
Yes, we all like free - but with so much free stuff out there how does one separate what is actually worth your time investigating from what is the misguided, unnecessary drivel developed by wanna we web developers?

I've sifted through my fair share of nonsense in the last few weeks but have picked up two excellent resources worth checking out:

1) Dimdim Webinar software. If you don't want to pay for WebEx, GoToMeeting or the like and simply want to hold the odd webinar here or there for a few ...
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5 tips on using LinkedIn to grow your business network

September 15, 2010
LinkedIn, the professional networking site often called "Facebook for business" offers a wealth of options to increase your awareness, grow your network and get introduced to that all important contact you've chasing down.

Below are 5 quick tips to get you started with LinkedIn and grow your network.

1) Build your profile and make it about you

LinkedIn is all about you, not necessarily your business. Focus on building your profile as opposed to your company's profile. Aim for 100% completion, ad...
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When you fail to plan ...

August 11, 2010
... you plan to fail.

Yes, we all know these famous words but what does this mean in today's business world? From an IT perspective, ensuring you have a Disaster Recover Plan and are taking regular backups of your data are essentials.

Costs for backing up data online are continually dropping and the benefits when compared with tradtional tape drives are numerous:
  • No more expensive drive to install (and configure) in your server.
  • No more daily tape backups and remembering to take them home every d...

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