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The Force is with HP

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HP has unveiled a Star Wars Special Edition notebook in anticipation of the release of Star Wars: “The Force Awakens.”

“HP is delivering an amazing Star Wars experience as the only PC vendor collaborating with Disney and Lucasfilm to create a one-of-one-kind notebook,” said Louis Perrin, director, consumer products, Printing and Personal Systems Group, HP EMEA.  “As part of this relationship, we were able to tap into Lucasfilm’s media archives to create custom screen savers, desktop backgrounds and sound profiles – configurable by the customer.”

Inspired by the Galactic Empire, the Star Wars Special Edition notebook has a “battle-worn” distressed design with “Galactic Empire” written in the Star Wars Aurebesh font on the hinge and iconic Stormtroopers on the keyboard deck. The touchpad design mirrors the X-Wing Star Fighter Guidance System and the red backlit keyboard completes the dark-side design.

For portability and power, the Star Wars Special Edition notebook gets up to 7 hours of battery life and is offered with Full HD and optional touch in a 15.6 inch (39.6cm) diagonal display. Customers have the choice of sixth generation Intel Core i5 and i7 processors. The notebook comes with up to 2 TB of HDD and up to 12GB of RAM with the option to select between Intel HD Graphics 520 and NVIDIA GeForce 940M graphics processors

The notebook is also offered with an optical drive for customers to enjoy all their Star Wars movies. With audio tuned by B&O Play and dual speakers, customers will have bold sound experiences while watching movies or listening to music.

Customers can enhance their Star Wars Special Edition notebook with an optional Star Wars Special Edition Sleeve.

Exclusive Star Wars Experience

The Star Wars Special Edition notebook unleashes a one-of-kind experience through software, content and audio on the Windows 10 PC. Customers click on the Imperial Cog desktop icon to be taken to the Star Wars Command Center for browsing the Star Wars Special Edition notebook’s Themes and Galleries. Users will have access to unique content collections with over 1,100 images spanning 40 years of Star Wars history.  Content includes extraordinary behind-the-scenes images, storyboards, artwork, classic photos, set and costume designs, and audio selections.

·       Themes offer customizability with sound, wallpaper and screensaver collections. This gives customers the option to replace the standard Windows notification sounds with eight categories of iconic Star Wars sounds including R2-D2 and lightsaber. Customers can choose wallpapers including planetary collections based on movie stills to truly create their own experience.

·       Galleries host several categories for customers to explore Star Wars content. Customers can view original movie posters in Collections or explore the Concept Art section to view Lucasfilm art that guided movie development including early ideas on characters, costumes and settings. Illustrated Art celebrates Star Wars with artwork from black and whites to comic book art.

The Star Wars Special Edition notebook includes several more features to enhance the customer experience. This includes access to the first Marvel Star Wars comic in the series, e-book excerpts from select Star Wars titles and Star Wars movie trailers. All features can be easily found on the desktop.

Hardcore fans will appreciate added Star Wars nuances on the Star Wars Special Edition notebook. Aurebesh font allows customers to type in Galactic Base Standard language for a truly engaging Star Wars experience. The Aurebesh font is located with other standard fonts in the font library. Another nod to Star Wars includes replacing the Recycle Bin with a Death Star icon – not destroyed when empty and destroyed when full.

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Now download a bank account

Absa has introduced an end-to-end account opening for new customers, through the Absa Banking App, which can be downloaded from the Android and Apple app stores. This follows the launch of the world first ChatBanking on WhatsApp service.

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This “download your account” feature enables new customers to Absa, to open a Cheque account, order their card and start transacting on the Absa Banking App, all within minutes, from anywhere and at any time, by downloading it from the App stores.

“Overall, this new capability is not only expected to enhance the customer’s digital experience, but we expect to leverage this in our branches, bringing digital experiences to the branch environment and making it easier for our customers to join and bank with us regardless of where they may be,” says Aupa Monyatsi, Managing Executive for Virtual Channels at Absa Retail & Business Banking.

“With this innovation comes the need to ensure that the security of our customers is at the heart of our digital experience, this is why the digital onboarding experience for this feature includes a high-quality facial matching check with the Department of Home Affairs to verify the customer’s identity, ensuring that we have the most up to date information of our clients. Security is supremely important for us.”

The new version of the Absa Banking App is now available in the Apple and Android App stores, and anyone with a South African ID can become an Absa customer, by following these simple steps:

  1. Download the Absa App
  2. Choose the account you would like to open
  3. Tell us who you are
  4. To keep you safe, we will verify your cell phone number
  5. Take a selfie, and we will do facial matching with the Department of Home Affairs to confirm you are who you say you are
  6. Tell us where you live
  7. Let us know what you do for a living and your income
  8. Click Apply.

 

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How we use phones to avoid human contact

A recent study by Kaspersky Lab has found that 75% of people pick up their connected device to avoid conversing with another human being.

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Connected devices are becoming essential to keeping people in contact with each other, but for many they are also a much-needed comfort blanket in a variety of social situations when they do not want to interact with others. A recent survey from Kaspersky Lab has confirmed this trend in behaviour after three-quarters of people (75%) admitted they use a device to pretend to be busy when they don’t want to talk to someone else, showing the importance of keeping connected devices protected under all circumstances. 

Imagine you’ve arrived at a bar and you’re waiting for your date. The bar is busy, and people are chatting all around you. What do you do now? Strike up a conversation with someone you don’t know? Grab your phone from your pocket or handbag until your date arrives to keep yourself busy? Why talk to humans or even make eye-contact with someone else when you can stare at your connected device instead?

The truth is, our use of devices is making it much easier to avoid small talk or even be polite to those around us, and new Kaspersky Lab research has found that 72% of people use one when they do not know what to do in a social situation. They are also the ‘go-to’ distraction for people even when they aren’t trying to look busy or avoid someone’s eye. 46% of people admit to using a device just to kill time every day and 44% use it as a daily distraction.

In addition to just being a distraction, devices are also a lifeline to those who would rather not talk directly to another person in day-to-day situations, to complete essential tasks. In fact, nearly a third (31%) of people would prefer to carry out tasks such as ordering a taxi or finding directions to where they need to go via a website and an app, because they find it an easier experience than speaking with another person.

Whether they are helping us avoid direct contact or filling a void in our daily lives, our constant reliance on devices has become a cause for panic when they become unusable. A third (34%) of people worry that they will not be able to entertain themselves if they cannot access a connected device. 12% are even concerned that they won’t be able to pretend to be busy if their device is out of action.

Dmitry Aleshin, VP for Product Marketing, Kaspersky Lab said, “The reliance on connected devices is impacting us in more ways than we could have ever expected. There is no doubt that being connected gives us the freedom to make modern life easier, but devices are also vital to help people get through different and difficult social situations. No matter what your ‘connection crutch’ is, it is essential to make sure your device is online and available when you need it most.”

To ensure your device lifeline is always there and in top health – no matter what the reason or situation – Kaspersky Security Cloud keeps your connection safe and secure:

·         I want to use my device while waiting for a friend – is it secure to access the bar’s Wi-Fi?

With Kaspersky Security Cloud, devices are protected against network threats, even if the user needs to use insecure public Wi-Fi hotspots. This is done through transferring data via an encrypted channel to ensure personal data safety, so users’ devices are protected on any connection.

·         Oh no! I’m bored but my phone’s battery is getting low – what am I going to do?

Users can track their battery level thanks to a countdown of how many minutes are left until their device shuts down in the Kaspersky Security Cloud interface. There is also a wide-range of portable power supplies available to keep device batteries charged while on-the-go.

·         I’ve lost my phone! How will I keep myself entertained now?

Should the unthinkable happen and you lose or have your phone stolen, Kaspersky Security Cloud can track and protect your device from data breaches, for complete peace of mind. Remote lock and locate features ensure your device remains secure until you are reunited.

 

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