If you got a new smartphone, tablet or computer for the holidays, these Computerworld stories can help you get acquainted with new OSes, find great apps and accessories, safely dispose of your old devices and more.
'Tis the season for giving and receiving new tech devices. But don't stop there -- whether you're the lucky recipient of a new tablet, smartphone or computer, or you provide tech support to someone who is, check out and share these Computerworld stories.
We've got tips for the latest OS versions, roundups of excellent apps and key accessories, and advice on how to safely dispose of old devices. Click a link below to skip directly to your chosen topic.
- Android phones and tablets
- iPhones and iPads
- Smartphones and tablets (general)
- Windows 8 computers and tablets
- Laptops and desktops (general)
- Safely disposing of old devices
Android phones and tablets
Android Power blogger JR Raphael reveals his go-to Android apps for making a phone viable as his primary device.
Make your Android device better than ever with a custom onscreen keyboard that suits your style. These five options represent the best the platform has to offer.
Android 4.2 lets you put widgets on your lock screen -- so which apps make the most of the feature? We round up 20 of the best.
There are tons of apps on Android that are unavailable and without any equivalent on iOS, many of which make an enormous difference in the day-to-day use of a mobile device. Here are eight worthy examples.
A guide (featuring input from readers) to making some interesting and creative home screen setups that wouldn't be possible on any other platform.
After months of waiting and more than a few unofficial leaks, Google's latest version of Android -- Android 4.4, a.k.a. KitKat -- has arrived. Here's what KitKat is all about, and what it means for you.
If you're not lucky enough to have received a phone or tablet with KitKat preinstalled, this regularly updated list reveals when you can expect it to be rolled out to your device.
For even more Android help, this guide rounds up an astonishing array of tips, apps and advice from Android Power blogger JR Raphael.
iPhones and iPads
Got an iPhone as a holiday gift? Read this guide to the device's less well-known tools and you'll use it like a pro.
A smartphone without power isn't even a phone, so here are seven tips to memorize if you want to keep your iPhone or iPad working just that little bit longer.
Taking iPhone pictures is pretty simple, but the results will be even more impressive with these simple tips.
Hassle-free file sharing between devices is easy with AirDrop, following these simple steps for iOS 7.
Here's everything you need to know to use your iPhone effectively to take and manage phone calls.
Siri is your intelligent assistant, but sometimes its achievements disappoint. Here's how to train it and use it to best effect.
Just moved to the iPhone from Android? Here's a little info to help you migrate your digital existence.
Covers from Belkin, Logitech and Zagg offer both protection for your iPad Mini's screen and a keyboard.
If you've just gotten an iPad or iPhone, or know someone who has, here are some great products to make the device even better.
Behind the radical new look and retooled user experience are some easily overlooked capabilities you'll enjoy.
Smartphones and tablets (general)
No matter how powerful the battery, it's nearly impossible to keep your mobile device running though a busy day. Here are some mobile chargers that can help.
These mobile apps can help you maintain your car, save money on gas, avoid an accident -- or help if you have one.
We've sifted through a wealth of mobile apps to see which ones can best help you find transportation, food, housing and local events in your city.
If you need to record your expenditures for your company or the IRS, these iPhone and Android apps can make it easier.
On the desk or on the go, it is often inconvenient -- and sometimes dangerous -- to have to hold your smartphone or tablet. These mounts for your car, office or home let you drive, work or play hands-free.
If you can't keep track of your business cards, one of these smartphone apps can help you scan and store all those new contacts.
Travelers who want to take some extra storage and battery power along with them should check out these three mobile devices.
Today's smartphones and tablets still have less-than-stellar speakers. Try one of these for a better audio experience.
Windows 8 computers and tablets
Need help negotiating the corporate landscape? Want to track your network usage? Just looking for a fun little time-waster? These free apps for Windows 8 can help.
Windows 8's interface can be bewildering for the uninitiated. If this is your first Windows 8 PC or tablet, here's how to find your way around the OS and make the most of its features.
Starting to get comfortable with Windows 8? Don't stop now: From invoking 'God Mode' to hacking the lock screen, here are 10 ways to make Windows 8 act the way you want.
Work smarter -- not harder -- with these no-nonsense Windows 8 tablet apps for business.
Want your Windows 8 machine to run faster? Of course you do. These tools and techniques can help.
Windows 8.1 solves some of the problems introduced with Windows 8, but there are still some improvements you can make to the newer version. Here's how.
If your machine came with Windows 8 and you're considering upgrading to Windows 8.1, make sure you understand the gotchas and how not to get bit.
Don't like the Metro interface on your PC? Here's the best way to banish it and boost your productivity.
New to Mavericks? Reviewer Michael deAgonia details what you need to know.
Got a new Mac? Explore these advanced OS X tips that put you in even more control.
Apple, Google, Microsoft, Amazon... it's all about the data. This guide puts you in control of the data you share in Mavericks.
Hassle-free file sharing between Macs is easy with AirDrop, following these simple steps.
In this guide you'll learn everything you need to squeeze even more performance from your new machine.
Some changes in Mavericks are truly useful, even if not immediately obvious. Be sure not to miss these.
First time with a Mac? Here's a short guide to help Windows users get up to speed on on Macs and Mavericks.
Laptops and desktops (general)
If you want to back up and carry all your data with you, these lightweight hard drives let you do it easily and with style.
If you don't want to store your important files on Dropbox or Box for security or other reasons, you can create your own cloud storage system.
Video-editing software now offers features formerly only available to pros. We review four of the top packages (with video examples).
Safely disposing of your old devices
Before you ditch a smartphone, tablet or computer, you need to make sure none of your data is retrievable. Here's how to do it.
Now that recycling is mandatory in many states, it's become even easier to sell, recycle or give away your unwanted hardware.
Museums and other institutions are searching for examples of older technology to exhibit. Is there a computer in your basement that qualifies? We tell you who's looking and what they're looking for.
Read more about hardware in Computerworld's Hardware Topic Center.
This story, "New tech device? Make the most of it" was originally published by Computerworld.