Google Abandons XP and Vista, Uninstall QuickTime for Windows… [Tech News Digest]

Google Chrome no longer supports XP & Vista, QuickTime on Windows is vulnerable, Microsoft’s Word Flow keyboard comes to iOS, Vine makes it easier to watch content, and the Game of Thrones opening in 360 degrees.

Chrome Drops Support for XP and Vista

Google Chrome no longer supports some older operating systems, including Windows XP, Windows Vista, OS X 10.6, OS X 10.7, and OS X 10.8. This change, which Google announced in November 2015, comes with the stable release of Chrome 50, which started rolling out on Wednesday (April 13).

What this means for those of you running Chrome on one of the aforementioned operating systems is no further updates or security fixes. This effectively means your browsing will become more vulnerable with each passing day. However, Chrome will continue to work for you in its current state for the foreseeable future.

Anyone affected by this really has three choices: 1. Carry on using Chrome and accept the increased risks a lack of support brings. 2. Switch to another Web browser, such as FireFox or Opera, both of which still support most of these aging operating systems. 3. Upgrade from XP or Vista to Windows 7, Windows 8.1, or Windows 10 (which you can now try before you buy).

Uninstall QuickTime on Windows

If you still have QuickTime lurking somewhere on your Windows PC you should probably go ahead and uninstall it. Now. Or at least sooner rather than later. This is due the discovery of two new vulnerabilities in QuickTime for Windows, as noted by security firm Trend Micro.

While the discovery of new vulnerabilities in software is normally dealt with swiftly by the company maintaining it, which normally issues patches to resolve the issue, Apple is no longer supporting QuickTime for Windows. This effectively means you’re on your own.

The call to uninstall comes from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, which warns that failure to do risks the “loss of confidentiality, integrity, or availability of data, as well as damage to system resources or business assets”. None of which is particularly desirable.

The vulnerabilities put users at risk if they either visit a Webpage or open a file containing malicious content. And while there have been no reports of successful attacks as of yet, Apple should really answer the call and issue a patch making its software safer to use.

Test Microsoft Word Flow for iOS

Microsoft is bringing Word Flow, its excellent Windows Phone keyboard, to iOS. And it’s currently requesting potential beta testers to sign up through Microsoft Garage.

As you can see from the video above, Word Flow lets you tap or swipe to type out words, intelligently predicting what words you would want to write to complete sentences. A one-handed option transforms the keyboard into an arc, making it a lot easier for thumb bandits to type.

There is no word yet on when Word Flow for iPhone will actually be released, but signing up for the beta ensures you’ll be one of the first in the queue for it.

Vine Launches a Watch Button

Vine has added a “Watch” button to the Vine app on Android and on iOS. This allows users to watch all of the content from a particular channel or account without having to manually scroll through individual posts.

As Vine is all about really short video clips, this feature makes perfect sense, and it should probably have been introduced a long time ago. Still, it’s better late than never, and it means we all have another way of wasting our time with minimal effort.

Game of Thrones Gets the 360 Treatment

And finally, the opening sequence to Game of Thrones is already all kinds of awesome. It’s epic, it’s rousing, it changes depending on the season, and it really gets you in the mood for the episode that follows. However, it’s now better than ever thanks to HBO giving it a 360-degree makeover.

This means you can explore Westeros and Essos by clicking and dragging on the video as it plays. All of the familiar fantastical locations are there, including King’s Landing, Winterfell, and Dorne, and with the whole thing arranged inside a sphere you can really get a sense of the scale of the imaginary world of Game of Thrones.

Your Views on Today’s Tech News

Should Google continue to support Windows XP and Vista? Should Apple fix QuickTime for Windows? Are you an iOS user keen to use Microsoft’s Word Flow keyboard? Will you be making use of Vine’s new Watch button? What video sequence would you like to see given a 360-degree makeover?

Let us know your thoughts on the Tech News of the day by posting to the comments section below. Because a healthy discussion is always welcome.

Tech News Digest is a daily column paring the technology news of the day down into bite-sized chunks that are easy to read and perfect for sharing.

Image Credit: Stephen Shankland via Flickr

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