How to Use the Magnifier Feature on iPhone or iPad in iOS 14

Your device can serve as a magnifier so you can better view the world around you. The built-in Magnifier tool uses the camera to zoom in like a magnifying glass. You can use the Magnifier to better see faraway objects or enlarge items that are closer to you, like text in a book or on a computer screen.

Your device can serve as a magnifier so you can better view the world around you. The built-in Magnifier tool uses the camera to zoom in like a magnifying glass. You can use the Magnifier to better see faraway objects or enlarge items that are closer to you, like text in a book or on a computer screen. Lets explorehow to use the Magnifier.

This is for the iPhone or iPad running iOS 14+

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Setup Magnifier

To enable the feature, go to

Settings > Accessibility > Magnifier

and toggle On the switch for Magnifier. Refer to below image:

Magnify 1
Accessing the Magnifier

The Magnifier then appears on your Home Screen as an app. To launch the tool, just tap its icon. In my example, my first available Home Screen area is at the bottom right of the 6th page. See below image:

Magnify 2
Accessing the Magnifier app

The Magnifier Toolbar

Notice that the objects within the view of your camera are magnified in the viewfinder. Using the Magnifier panel at the bottom of your screen, drag the slider or pinch your fingers in and out to zoom in and out of the object. You can move the Magnifier panel around the screen by dragging any empty area of it with your finger. See following image:

Magnify 3
The Magnifier Toolbar

The Brightness Option

Tap the icon for Brightness and then drag the slider to increase or decrease the brightness. Tap the icon again to turn off the Brightness slider. Refer to below image:

Magnify 4
The Brighness option

The Filter Option

Tap the Filter icon to choose between different filters and find one that improves the clarity of the object. Tap the icon again to turn off the Filter gallery. Tap the Flashlight icon to turn on your device’s flashlight and throw more light onto the object. See below image:

Magnify 5
The Filter option

The Capture and View Options

To capture an image of the object you are viewing, press the Shutter button. You can then view any images you capture by tapping the View button. Swipe through the thumbnails of your captured images at the bottom left-hand corner and tap a specific picture to view it. See following image:

Magnify 6
Selecting a snapshot to view

The Share Option

From here, you can also tap the Share icon to share an image with someone else via an app or service. Refer to below image:

Magnify 7
Sharing your snapshot via Social Media

Close the Magnifier

Tap the End link at the upper left-hand corner to return to the Magnifier screen. See following image:

Magnify 8
Close the Magnifier

That’s it. Please feel free to share this post! One way to share is via Twitter.

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How to Access Full Screen Startup in Windows 10

While in desktop mode, Windows 10 allows you to use the Start menu in a full-screen mode or in a way that only covers part of the screen.

While in desktop mode, Windows 10 allows you to use the Start menu in a full-screen mode or in a way that only covers part of the screen. Lets explore how to do this.

Depending on how you have your Start menu configured, a full-screen Start menu covers the entire screen (but not the Taskbar), and you can change between a “pinned tiles” view and an “all apps” view using the buttons in the upper-left corner.

In either view, you will see a screen full of shortcuts that you click on to launch an application. Refer to below image for a partial view of my desktop:

Start 1
Partial Desktop screen

To configure whether you see the full-screen Start menu in desktop mode or not, we need to make a change in Windows Settings.

This is for devices running Windows 10 operating system

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First, click the Start menu, select the Gear icon on the bottom left, then click Settings, or press the Windows+I keys to open Settings. See below image:

Start 2
Accessing Settings

Now, click on Personalization. See following image:

Start 3
Access Personalization

Next, select Start from the sidebar to open the its settings. Refer to below image:

Start 4
Accessing Start option

In Start menu settings, scroll down to the switch labeled Use Start Full Screen. If you would like to use the Start menu full screen in desktop mode, set this switch to On. If you do not want Start to cover the entire screen when you open it in desktop mode, set this switch to Off. See below image:

Start 5
Disabling Start Full Screen

Note! If your PC is in tablet mode, it will always show a full-screen Start menu.

You do not have to use a full-screen Start menu to get more room for shortcuts. If you would like to use a larger Start menu without having it occupy the full screen, you can easily resize the Start menu by clicking and dragging its edges.

Also, you can add a few more tiles by enabling the switch labeled Show more tiles located at the top of Start menu settings. Refer to above image.

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How to View Privacy and Other Features in Safari for iPhone and iPad

Apple’s default web browser on iPhone or iPad is Safari, but have you ever taken the time to investigate its many hidden features and settings? We are going to concentrate on three features regarding security, privacy and the new start page. You may be amazed at what you find, at least we were.

Apple’s default web browser on iPhone or iPad is Safari, but have you ever taken the time to investigate its many hidden features and settings? We are going to concentrate on three features regarding security, privacy and the new start page. You may be amazed at what you find, at least we were.

With iOS or iPadOS 14 and higher, Safari has a few new tricks up its sleeve, including privacy reports, and password monitoring. Let’s explore three hidden features.

This is for the iPhone and iPad

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Your Privacy Report

Cross-site trackers monitor your web-based activities as you surf from one site to another, an activity that can certainly raise privacy concerns. Safari blocks such trackers from profiling you by default, and now allows you to see which sites and trackers are blocked.

First, to check your Privacy Report, tap the aA icon in upper left-hand corner of a website. Next, tap Privacy Report. Refer to below image:

Safari 8
Accessing the Privacy Report

Now, your report will open. See below image:

Safari 7
Your Privacy Report

In my Privacy Report, I have 164 trackers with 78% of visited websites with trackers.

Next, click the Show More link to learn more about the cross-site tracking and how Apple blocks them and to read about trackers. The window reveals how many trackers were prevented from profiling you and how many sites contacted such trackers. See following image:

Safari 9
Stats about your browsing

Let’s go back one screen and tap the Show Less link. Now, scroll down till you see two tabs. Websites and Trackers tabs. Refer to below image:

Safari 10
Verbage about trackers

Next, tap on a Website to see which trackers were blocked. See below image:

Safari 5
Selecting a website for tracking info

In my example, I selected Microsoft.com. Yes, even Microsoft has trackers. You may be alarmed at the number and percentage of trackers wanting to profile you, especially if you access Safari a lot. Your device is blocking them.

You may tap on the Trackers link to see a list of trackers. See following image:

Safari 7
The list of trackers for a website

My son works for a cyber security firm. He helps recover “hacked” devices. If a person wants to “hack” your device, with the proper tools, they can. The best you can do, is to “protect” your device. by using security features on your device and apps, having strong passwords, using multi factor authentication, and the like.

Your iCloud Passwords

On your iPhone or iPad, you can now see any passwords saved in the iCloud Keychain that has been leaked in a data breach, are being reused for multiple login credentials, or are considered weak.

First, launch Settings (the gear icon). Refer to below image:

Safari 1
Accessing Settings

Now, scroll down to the Passwords option and tap it. See below image:

Safari 2
Accessing the Passwords option

Next, tap the Security Recommendations option. See following image:

Safari 3
Accessing Security Recommendations option

Now, you can tap a specific entry to delete or change the password. You may be surprised by passwords you have forgotten. Apple has provided a link to access the website for updating these passwords. In my example, I have one High Priority password that I need to change; one that I had forgotten about. The password for PayPal website has been erased for privacy purposes. Refer to below image:

Safari 4
Your comprised passwords

Your New Start Page

Safari debuted a new Start page with the release of iOS/iPadOS 13. Open a new tab by taping the plus “+” button at the bottom of your screen. See below image:

Safari 11
Selecting a new tab

Now, you will see your bookmarks, frequently visited sites, and Siri suggested sites. Tap the Show More or Show Less link in the upper right to see more or fewer icons. See following image:

Safari 12
Your new Start page

Using SpeedTest

Althrough not a feature of privacy in Safari, you may want to know about the speed of your ISP for downloads and uploads. This tool is best used for a PC or Mac. Simply, head over to SpeedTest in your browser for your ISP speeds. Next, click the big round GO button. When it is finished, you will see your results like the image below:

Safari 13
Results of running SpeedTest

You can click the GO button again to rerun the test. Your results will differ depending on the time of day and Internet traffic. The firm, Ookla, has specific apps for your operating system that you can download and use.

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How to Use the Zoom Feature on iPhone or iPad in iOS 14

Zoom is an accessibility feature that makes everything on your iPhone or iPad’s screen bigger and much easier to read.

Zoom is an accessibility feature that makes everything on your iPhone or iPad’s screen bigger and much easier to read.

It defaults to 5x magnification but can be set from 1x to 15x, depending on your preference and needs. You can pair it with Voice Over for further assistance to those with visual impairments.

Let us explore how to setup and use this feature.

This is for iPhone or iPad running iOS 14+

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Setup Zoom Settings

To enable the feature, go to

 Settings > Accessibility > Zoom

and toggle On the switch for Zoom. Refer to below image:

Zoom 1
Accessing the Zoom feature

A small window pops up that zooms in on the portion of the screen on which the window is resting. You can move the Zoom window by dragging the small bar that appears in the middle bottom of the window. You can also swipe up and down on the screen to change which section is zoomed in. (Note! We are unable to capture the screen while in Zoom.)

Turning on the Follow Focus button moves the Zoom window to the text you are typing and will follow along as you type. Turning on Smart Typing moves the Zoom window when a keyboard pops up so that the text is zoomed in but the keyboard is not. See below image:

Zoom 2
Two Zoom options

More Zoom Settings

On the Zoom settings, you can toggle Keyboard Shortcuts, Zoom Controller, Zoom Region, and Zoom Filter. Each switch has an associated menu of features to choose. At the bottom of the Zoom settings, you may adjust the Maximum Zoom Level (the default is 5x). See following image:

Zoom 3
More Zoom options

The Keyboard Shortcuts is a list of shortcuts to use on your keyboard for various Zoom features. Refer to below image:

Zoom 4
Zoom Keyboard Shortcuts

Setup Zoom Controller

Show Controller displays a round on-screen controller that you can use to move the Zoom window around the screen. Tap the controller to display a menu with options to zoom in/out, choose the region, resize the lens, choose a filter, or hide/show the controller. See below image:

Zoom 5
Zoom Controller options

You can zoom in or out with the first menu option. Choosing Region lets you choose a Full Screen Zoom or a Window Zoom.

Full-Screen Zoom makes the Zoom window disappear, while the entire screen is zoomed in instead. With Window Zoom, you use the Zoom window to zoom in on a small section of the screen as you move it around. See followimg image:

Zoiom 6
Zoom window options

Resize Lens feature allows you to resize the Zoom area you are viewing by grabbing and dragging on its handles. Refer to below image:

Zoom 7
Resize Lens option

The option to Choose Filter applies a specific color filter to the Zoom window in an attempt to make the text easier to read. See below image:

Zoom 8
Zoom filter options

iPhone/iPad Tapping Shortcuts

Once you have Zoom enabled, you can use it on the fly. Here’s how to use it:

  • Double-tap with three fingers anywhere on the screen to enable and disable zoom. You can do this from pretty much anywhere.
  • Drag three fingers around the screen to pan around and move to another area of the screen.
  • Use one or two fingers to scroll in the particular section that is on the display.
  • Tap and hold the anchor to drag the magnifying glass up and down the screen.

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How to Use Emoji in Microsoft Word

One of the most common forms of shorthand communication developed for the mobile age is the icon-based vocabulary known as Emoji. You have seen those seen Emoji pictures on social media. It’s available for Microsoft Word in Windows 10, MacOS, iOS, iPadOS, and Android.

One of the most common forms of shorthand communication developed for the mobile age is the icon-based vocabulary known as Emoji. You have seen those seen Emoji pictures on social media. It’s available for Microsoft Word in Windows 10, MacOS, iOS, iPadOS, and Android.

Microsoft Word is an indisputable application in the documentation world. When preparing documentations, you can easily insert Emoji to jazz up a Word document on various devices.

You can enter an Emoji in Word in the same way you can enter an Emoji in any other application. While typing in a Word document, just use the appropriate keyboard shortcut for your operating system. Let!s explore how this is done.

This is for devices supporting Microsoft Word. Screenshots are from Windows 10

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Open Rmoji Keyboard

Open your Word document and position the cursor where you want to insert the Emoji.

  • For Windows 10 – Press, “Windows + Period” keys or “Windows + Semicolon” keys to open the Emoji picker.
  • For MaOS – Press “Command + Control + Space” keys to open Emoji keyboard on a Mac, which is a Character Viewer app in MacOS.
  • For iPhone, iPad, or Android phone, you can use the standard Emoji keyboard.

These keyboard shortcuts work in basically all Windows or Mac applications.

A pop-up will be displayed with all popular emoji symbols. The most frequently used Emoji will appear first. Refer to below image:

Emoji 1
The Emoji keyboard

Searching for an Emoji

On both Windows and Mac, you can start typing the name of an Emoji to search for it. For example, to find “music” related Emoji, just start typing a few characters of the keyword. You can also just scroll through the long list of Emoji to find one.

Use the arrow keys and press Enter or click an Emoji to insert it. See below image:

Emoji 2
Searching for a music Emoji

The Emoji you insert into your document will appear as a colorful icon. You can resize them. adjust their font size, just as you would with any other text in the document.

See following image for an inserted “music”Emoji followed by text:

Emojii 3
Inserting an Emoji followed by some text

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How to Enable Offline Translation on iPhone in iOS 14

The Translate app, introduced in iOS 14, allows you to quickly translate between languages using text or voice input. With speech output, support for a dozen languages, and a comprehensive built-in dictionary, it’s an essential tool for travelers or students.

The Translate app, introduced in iOS 14, allows you to quickly translate between languages using text or voice input. With speech output, support for a dozen languages, and a comprehensive built-in dictionary, it’s an essential tool for travelers or students.

By default, the app uses cloud services to perform translations. However, you can also enable offline translation on your iPhone running this app by downloading the languages.

As a disclaimer, Apple warns that the offline translations might not be as accurate as online translations. This is because in the offline mode, the app does not use Apple’s cloud computing’s ability to deliver the best translated results.

Still, it’s handy if you do not have a network connection, especially while traveling to third world countries where Internet bandwidth is poor. It is also ideal if you have a sensitive job and do not want any translation data transferred over the Internet or potentially stored in the cloud

Let’s explore how to setup offline translation.

This is for the iPhone running iOS 14

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Accessing Translate

First, launch Settings (the Gear icon). Refer to below image:

Offline 1
Accessing Settings

Next, scroll way down and tap Translate. See below image:

Offline 2
Accessing Translate option

Enable On Device

Now, toggle to On the label On device mode. See following image:

Offline 3
Enabling on=device mode

Download Languages

A pop-up will be displayed alerting you that you need to download languages to translate locally on your device. Just tap Open App. Refer to below image:

Offline 4
Accessing Open App link

Next, a pop-up message will be displayed about the download of languages. See below image:

Offline 5
Downlaod of languages message

On the next screen, tap either of the two language pair buttons at top of the page. See following image:

Translate 4

In the list that appears, scroll down to the Available Offline Languages section. Now, tap the language you want to use offline, and it will download automatically. Please wait for the download to finish.

Now, repeat the above procedure for other language(s).

Once a language is downloaded, a checkmark will appear beside it. In my example, I have downloaded Spanish, so now I have English and Spanish for offline translations. Refer to below image:

Offline 6
Checkmark of downloaded languages

Translate Off Line

Next, tap Done in upper right-hand corner and you will be returned to the main Translate screen. Now, type in your text and the app will translate as usual but without a network connection. All of your translations will stay on your local device. See below example for translation from English to Spanish:

Offline 7
Translating Englis to Spanish

To return to cloud service translation, just toggle Off the label On device mode in Settings.

You are finished! You now have mastered offline translation on your iPhone.

I hope you have found this post helpful. If so, click the Tweet icon below. This will launch Twitter where you click its icon to post the Tweet.

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Please feel free to leave a comment. I would love hearing from you. Do you have a computer or smart device tech question? I will do my best to answer your inquiry. Please mention the device, app and version that you are using. To help us out, you can send screenshots of your data related to your question.

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How to Use the Translate App for iPhone in iOS 14

The Translate app, introduced in iOS 14, allows you to quickly translate between languages using text or voice input. With speech output, support for a dozen languages, and a comprehensive built-in dictionary, it’s an essential tool for travelers or students.

The Translate app, introduced in iOS 14, allows you to quickly translate between languages using text or voice input. With speech output, support for a dozen languages, and a comprehensive built-in dictionary, it’s an essential tool for travelers or students.

This is for the iPhone running iOS 14

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Copyright Scott Adams, Inc./Distributed by Universal Uclick for UFS

Locate the App

First, let’s locate the Translate app. From your first Home screen, swipe right to open Today View. Now, type “translate” into the search bar that appears, then tap the Apple Translate icon (the first one in my example). If this is the first time to launch the Translate app, you will be presented with a few introductory screens; just follow the instructions to start the app. Refer to below image:

Translate 1
Accessing the Apple Translate app

When Translate opens, make sure you are in translate mode by tapping the Translate button at the bottom of the screen. See below image:

Translate 3
Accessing Translate button

Select the Languages

Next, you willl need to choose the language pair using the two buttons at the top of the screen.

The button on the left sets the source language, and the button on the right sets the destination language. See following image:

Translate 4
Accessing Source and Destination lanuguage

Just tap either language to select your source or destination language. When finished, tap Done in upper right-hand corner. Refer to below image:

Translate 5
Selecting your languages

Translation by Text

Now it’s time to enter the phrase you would like to translate. If you would like to type it with an on-screen keyboard, tap the Enter Text area on the main Translate screen. See below image:

Translate 6
The text input area

Your screen will display an on-screen keyboard. Type in what you would like to translate , then tap Go at the bottome right-hand corner. See Following image:

Translate 7
Entering text to translate

Translation by Voice

Another method is to speak the phrase that needs translation. Just tap the Microphone icon at the bottom on the main Translate screen. Refer to below image:

Translate 8
Accessing microphone

When the screen changes, say the phrase you would like to translate out loud. As you speak, Translate will recognize the words and write them out on your screen. See below image:

Translate 6
The translated text

When you are finished, you will see the resulting translation on the main screen, just below the phrase you spoke or entered.

Favorites and Dictionary

At the bottom of your screen, you will see a toolbar. See following image:

Translate 6
The Translate toolbar

If you press the Favorite button (which resembles a star), you can add the translation to your Favorites list. You can access it later by pressing the Favorites button at the bottom of the screen. Refer to below image:

Translate 12
Saving to Favorites

If you press the Dictionary button (which resembles a book) in the toolbar, the screen will to switch to Dictionary mode. In this mode, you can tap each individual word in a translation to see what it means. The Dictionary can also help you explore possible alternative definitions for the selected word. See below image:

Translate 13
Accessing the Dictionary

Playback

If you press the Play button (a triangle in a circle) in the toolbar, you can hear the translation result spoken aloud by a computer synthesized voice. See following image:

Translate 14
Playback your translation

That’s it. I hope you find this helpful on your travels to other countries or as a student mastering a different language.

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The author’s Vietnam eBook on the Battle for Tra Bong: Events and Aftermath

How to Check If You Have the Latest Version of Windows 10

The latest version of Windows 10 is the October 2020 Update, version “20H2,” which was released on October 20, 2020. Microsoft releases new major updates about every six months.

The latest version of Windows 10 is the October 2020 Update, version “20H2,” which was released on October 20, 2020. Microsoft releases new major updates about every six months.

This is for devices running Windows 10

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These major updates can take some time to reach your PC since Microsoft and PC manufacturers do extensive testing before fully rolling them out. Let’s find out what version you are running, and how you can skip the wait and get the most recent version if you do not already have it.

This update was codenamed “20H2” during its development process, as it was released in the second half of 2020. Its final build number is 19042.

Related

How to Understand Windows 10 Names and Numbers

How to Check for the Latest Version

First, open your Start menu, and then click the gear-shaped Settings icon or press the Windows+I to open the Settings app. Refer to below image:

Latest Version 1
Accessing Settings

In the Settings window, head to

System > About

and then scroll down toward the bottom to the Windows Specifications section.

A version number of “20H2” indicates you are using the October 2020 Update. This is the latest version. If you see a lower version number, you are using an older version.

In my example below, I am using “2004”, the May 2020 Update. See below image:

Latest Version 2
Accessing Windows About information

To find out information on Microsoft Windows releases, head to Microsoft’s Windows 10 release information web page. Just look at the most recent version under “Semi-Annual Channel” section.

How to Get the Latest Version

The best way to do this is by typing in Windows Update in the Cortana search bar in lower left-hand corner of your screen. Next, click on the Windows Update settings in upper left-hand corner of your screen. Now, click the Check for updates link for any updates and install per instructions. See following image where it says I am up to date, but there is an update available, the October 2020 update with an Download and Install link:

Latest Update 3
Checking for Windows updates

An alternate method is to visit Microsoft.com and hit the Update now button visible on the page. A small exe file, the Update Assistant tool, will be downloaded to your computer. Refer to below image:

Latest Version 4
Download the Windows Update Assistant tool

When you run this file, you will see the main screen of the Update Assistant tool. It will let you know if you are running the latest version of the Windows and whether your PC is capable of running it.

Click on Update now to start the upgrade process.

The tool will run a few compatibility checks for your PC and disk space required for installing the update.

If all appears well, the Update Assistant will access the Microsoft servers.

It will offer you two options:

  1. Upgrade this PC now
  2. Create installation media

Now, chose the first option.

The main highlight of the whole upgrade process is that all your files will be safe and right where you left them. Also, if the method does not work, you can go back to a prior version of Windows 10 anytime.

The install will take some time and your PC will restart several times. The best you can do is wait till the upgrade is finished..

In the end, when the process is complete you could either choose to restart the PC right way or after some time to allow the changes to take effect.

Note: By running the Upgrade Assistant, you are forcing Windows 10 to upgrade itself. Even if there is a known problem with the update on your computer, Windows will ignore the problem and install the update anyway. Microsoft recommends you check for any known problems impacting your system first.

You are done. Please feel free to share this post! One way to share is via Twitter, as mentioned below.

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Display of your tweet

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How to Disable Noise Cancellation on iPhone in iOS 14

Does your iPhone earpiece sound muffled or somewhat weird? The iPhone has a microphone next to the iSight camera for noise cancellation, allowing the user to block out ambient noise and get a more clearer sound in the earpiece. But at times, noise cancellation can be a hit or miss, resulting in muffled or fuzzy sound, making things tough to understand. If you’re facing such an issue, let’s turn off noise cancellation to fix things in a jiffy.

Does your iPhone earpiece sound muffled or somewhat weird? The iPhone has a microphone next to the iSight camera for noise cancellation, allowing the user to block out ambient noise and get a more clearer sound in the earpiece. But at times, noise cancellation can be a hit or miss, resulting in muffled or fuzzy sound, making things tough to understand. If you’re facing such an issue, let’s turn off noise cancellation to fix things in a jiffy.

This is for the iPhone running iOS 14

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How Does It Work

Phone noise cancellation, first introduced in iOS 7, monitors levels of ambient background noise and produces an inverse audio signal to cancel that background noise, so you don’t hear it on a phone call. The technology works best with continuous low-level background noise, and it typically works very well. But sometimes it can produce an eerily quiet phone conversation or unsettling audio sounds, such as small crowd noises or low-level background music.

Also, some people find the noise-cancellation effect physically uncomfortable especially when using a headset. Fortunately, phone noise cancellation is easy to turn off on the iPhone. Let’s explore how to do this.

Disable Noise Cancellation

First, open Settings (the gear icon). Refer to below image:

Noise 1
Accessing Settings

Now, scroll down and launch Accessibility. See below image:

Noise 2
Accessing Accessibility

Next, scroll down to the Hearing section and tap Audio/Visual. See following image:

Noise 3
Accessing Audio/Visual

Now, tap the Phone Noise Cancellation toggle to turn it off (the default setting is On). Refer to below image:

Noise 4
Disabling Phone Noise Cancellation

Next, let’s go back one screen to make sure the change registers. You can now exit Settings. The next time you place or receive a phone call, noise cancellation will be disabled.

That’s it. You may enable the feature at any time by following the above steps.

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The author’s Vietnam eBook on the Battle for Tra Bong: Events and Aftermath

How to Understand Windows 10 Names and Numbers

Windows 10 has a lot of overlapping version numbers and names. For example, the October 2020 Update is also called 20H2, version 2009, and build 19042. It often seems like different teams at Microsoft are speaking different languages. Here’s how to understand Microsoft’s jargon.

Windows 10 has a lot of overlapping version numbers and names. For example, the October 2020 Update is also called 20H2, version 2009, and build 19042. It often seems like different teams at Microsoft are speaking different languages. Here’s how to understand Microsoft’s jargon.

This is for the Windows 10 operating system

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The Development Codename

Each Windows 10 Update starts with a development codename. In recent years, Microsoft has simplified these.

For example, Windows 10 20H2 became the October 2020 Update. It was named “20H2” because it was planned for release in the second half of 2020.

In theory, these development codenames are just that; for the Windows development process. In practice. Microsoft has a lot of documentation that uses them, referring to “20H2” and “20H1.” These modern development codenames are easy to understand.

These development codenames appear to be replacing the version numbers in Windows 10’s interface. To view your codename, go to:

Settings > System > About

Here you willl see the development codename presented as the “version” under Windows Specifications. Refer to below image:

Win Version 1
The About option

Here is a list of Windows 10’s development codenames for 2020 and 2019 updates:

  • 20H2 became the October 2020 update
  • 20H1 became the May 2020 update
  • 19H2 became the November 2019 update
  • 19H1 became th May 2019 update

Prior to this, Microsoft named these updates “Redstone” and “Threshold”. Threshold 1″ was the original codename for Windows 10.

The Marketing Name

To make things “simpler” for us, Microsoft created official names for each update, designed to make them human-readable. When an update is near release, it gets one of these names.

In recent years, these names have been pretty self-explanatory. “October 2020 Update” and “May 2019 Update” are easy terms to understand. That’s the month and year the update was released. It’s more precise than “20H2” and “19H1.”

We call them “marketing names” because that’s what they originally were. Despite Microsoft presenting names like “October 2020 Update” as the official ones, many Microsoft documents use terms like “20H2” or “version 2009” instead. Even Windows 10 itself doesn’t use this name; perhaps because it’s created by the engineers and not the marketing department.

The Version Number

Windows 10 has version numbers which are different from the development codename. The Windows 10 October 2020 Update is technically Windows 10 version 2009. The first two digits represent the year and the last two digits represent the month.

Microsoft is confusing us. The version number seems to refer to the month the update was “finalized” (and perhaps released to Insiders), while the marketing name refers to the update the month was released.

Here’s a list of 2020 and 2019 version numbers for Windows 10 updates:

  • The October 2020 Update is version 2009, which refers to September 2020
  • The May 2020 Update is version 2004, which refers to April 2020
  • The November 2019 Update is version 1909, which refers to September 2019
  • The May 2019 Update is version 1903, which refers to March 2019

Microsoft is getting away from these numbers, with development names like “20H2” now shown in the System panel. Another way to view your version number is to launch the winver dialog:

  • Press Windows+R
  • Enter winver in the dialog box
  • Press Enter or OK

See below image:

Win Version 2
The Windows version and OS Build number

In older versions of Windows 10, these screens showed the version number instead.

The OS Build Number

Windows 10 also has operating system (OS) build numbers. During the Windows development process, each “build” of Windows 10 released has its own build number.

After much testing and bug-fixing, Microsoft settles on a final build that will be the stable version of the update. When the stable update is released, it still has this OS build number.

The October 2020 Update has the OS build number “19042.” Technically, the full build number is “10.0.19042,” to indicate that it’s a Windows 10 build. Only the last five digits change.

Also, there are minor build numbers; the stable version of 20H2 is initially “19042.572”, but the “572” number will increase as Microsoft issues minor patches for the update. Here is a list of 2020 and 2019 OS build numbers:

  • 20H2 is build number 19042.
  • 20H1 is build number 19041.
  • 19H2 is build number 18363.
  • 19H1 is build number 18362.

What Does All This Mean?

At times, it seems like different teams at Microsoft are speaking different languages. One document talks about 20H2, another talks about version 2009, a technical document refers to build 19042, and the marketing team talks up the October 2020 Update. They’re all talking about the same thing.

Now that you understand this, it’s easier to make sense of the mess of version numbers you see across Microsoft’s websites and within Windows 10 itself.

I hope you have found this post helpful. If so, click the Tweet icon below. This will launch Twitter where you click its icon to post the Tweet.

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I Would Like to Hear From You

Please feel free to leave a comment. I would love hearing from you. Do you have a computer or smart device tech question? I will do my best to answer your inquiry. Please mention the device, app and version that you are using. To help us out, you can send screenshots of your data related to your question.

The author’s Vietnam eBook on the Battle for Tra Bong: Events and Aftermath