Time for Celebration

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20 years ago this month I was in college studying graphic design and visual communications. While I was in school I was being asked by my fellow students to help them with their computers. As time went by I was doing more and more computer training and tech support. Viola - Design Solutions was born. Over the years my business has, of course, changed and grown. Two years ago I renamed my business to Technology Simplified. But my original passion for helping people learn to be comfortable using their computers has not and even today, 20 years later, that is still the primary goal of our services. Thank you for being a part of the last 20 years! We are looking forward to working with you for many more.

Thank you everyone for your patience as we transitioned John to a full time technician / trainer. He is now working Monday - Thursday. Now the search begins for another team member. I am very picky about who I am willing to bring into this wonderful business. Rest assured though, that until we have someone else on board, John, Jillian and myself are here to take care of all your computer, iPhone, iPad and Apple needs. Remember we do offer remote appointments using the secure Splashtop SOS software. This is sometimes perfect for a small problem that doesn't require a full appointment.


Tech support remote / phone appointments will be charged* as follows:

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5 - 15 minutes
$25 flat fee

16 - 30 minutes
$50 flat fee

30+ minutes
Regular hourly rate

*Payment is taken by credit card at time of service


Wow Apple! Last month you gave us a lot of fun new toys and software. On the anniversary of the first iPhone, September 12th, 2017 Apple held a live event with a moving tribute to Steve Jobs. At this event they also announced 3 new iPhones, a new Apple watch, a new Apple TV, a wireless charging pad and release dates for both Mac OS High Sierra and iOS 11. BUT dear reader - PLEASE you do not have to be first on the block to install either the new Mac OS High Sierra (10.13) or the iOS 11. Here is a roundup of what actually was released and what to expect.

New Software

Image from  www.macrumors.com

Mac OS High Sierra
In this new OS there are definite refinements to the way the Mac OS works and several of the built in apps get some updating of features. You can find out more here.The biggest difference in High Sierra is the change in the way Apple uses the file system. They are transitioning to the APFS or Apple File System. This was introduced on iPhones / iPads with iOS 10.3 and it is now being brought to the Mac. This is a bit of a geeky topic so if you want to know more this article explains it all.


What this means for you dear reader is that there is going to be a transition period during which Apple refines the way this new OS works and now is NOT the time to upgrade. Let Apple work out the bugs on someone else's machine.

iOS 11

iOS 11 is another new iOS for your iPhone and iPad with many interface tweaks and upgrades. Here is the complete list.iOS 11 is a much more robust iOS than we have had in the past and because of this it requires relatively new iPhones or iPads and it drops supports for apps that haven't been updated in a long time. I have been looking at some of the features in iOS 11 and I like them - it is a much more customizable interface and there is now drag and drop support on iPads. But as with any new OS - there is a "shake out" period where undiscovered glitches surface along with bugs that need to be squashed. Also with this new iOS all third party apps require an update.

So just like with Mac OS High Sierra - iOS 11 still needs time to be ready for everyday consumers. Now is NOT the time to upgrade. Let Apple work out the bugs on someone else's machine and give third party developers time to update their apps.

New Hardware

iPhone X


It is known as iPhone 10 in honor of the 10th anniversary. iPhone X is a radically redesigned phone that packs the screen of an iPhone Plus into the same size as an iPhone 7 (or now 8) by removing the home button, the bezels around the screen, and wireless charging. It has added the ability because of a full glass surround to charge wirelessly and it uses facial recognition to log into the phone or access secure features. Read all about it here.

iPhone 8 and 8 Plus

These are essentially a cross between an updated iPhone 7 and 7 Plus and the iPhone X. The iPhone 8's have the new wireless charging available to them and Apple has upgraded many of the internal components including a long asked for improvement to the sound quality of the speakers. Mac Rumors has a great article on both the iPhone 8 & 8 Plus.


Forbes magazine has a very good comparison of all three new phones - the iPhone X and the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus.;

Other hardware: Apple TV v.4 - with full support for 4K TV's and a wireless charger for your iPhone X, 8 and 8 Plus called the AirPower.

Apple Watch Series 3
by John Wentworth

Image from  www.macworld.co.uk

Since the first release of the Apple Watch, one of the biggest limitations was that it needed an iPhone nearby for most of its' functionality: on its own, you could use it to tell time, monitor activity, and a few other things.

The newly-announced Apple Watch Series 3 adds the usual upgrades (faster processor, etc.) but brings with it a huge change: they now include an LTE (cellular) radio as well. This means that the Watch can now make calls, stream music, and do other internet-related tasks while on the go, away from your iPhone. Your dreams of having a true Dick Tracy-style 2-Way Wrist Radio have finally become reality! Battery life while making calls is likely to be quite short, but sufficient for short conversations while out and about.

I've been using Apple Watch since the first release, and have really enjoyed some of the features that they've all had: GPS directions, weather information, replying to text messages, and setting up reminders. With the addition of a cell radio, the Watch can now do all of these things with much more freedom.


In the last few days Apple began pushing this new iOS update out to iPhone and iPads. IF you are prompted to update follow this procedure to "just say no."

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1. The update to iOS 11 will download automatically on your iPhone/iPad iF you are connected to a wireless network. You cannot prevent this from happening but when you are prompted to install as in this older screen shot to the right - choose the "Remind Me Later" option. You will then be prompted to "install tonight" - just say no and then follow the steps below.

2. To prevent the update from trying to install again, you can delete it from your device with these steps.

Settings > General > Storage & iCloud Usage > Manage Storage
Scroll through the list of installed apps to find the iOS update app (It will say iOS 11.0.x,) tap on the name, then tap the red "Delete App" option.

3. Next do this step to  "hopefully" prevent the download from updating until you are ready - (sometimes this doesn't work and you will have to delete the updater again as above):

Automatic Updates are enabled by default, so you'll need to turn them off. This won't help with the current update, but it will stop you from getting these messages in future. You do this by: 

  • Going to Settings - tap on it to open.
  • Scroll down to see iTunes & App Stores - tap on it to open.
  • Toggle "Automatic Downloads" to Off IF it is green. If it is not green it is already off. 

BUT remember dear reader - PLEASE you do not have to be first on the block to install either the new Mac OS High Sierra (10.13) or the iOS 11.