Posts byKate Little

Microsoft Surface as a Service

Microsoft Surface as a Service

Last year Microsoft decided to offer the Microsoft Surface computers on a subscription style basis for business users. They have called it Surface as a Service and have made a good attempt at getting their deal as good as ours… sort of. Surface as a Service enables business customers to pay monthly to lease for Surface devices, accessories, software, services, and support. Microsoft partners who are Surface Authorised are able to sell Surface as a Service; it’s not available directly from Microsoft. read more

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iPad insurance for schools

iPad insurance for schools

Schools all over the country are buying and leasing multiple iPads. Not only are they spending thousands on the devices themselves, but also on the insurance they will need to cover them…

iPad SchoolsApple devices are very expensive but so common. They have flooded the market with all of their must buy- must have products and even older models cost a lot of money. Whether it be phones, tablets, laptops or computers, Apple are often dominating. With the influx of Apple devices in to the home, businesses and schools, the insurance market has changed. Have you noticed a change in your policy recently? More and more insurance companies are excluding all Apple products from their insurance policy as they have been hit in the last year with expensive repair or replacement bills they are not used to covering. read more

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The new Surface Book with Performance Base is here… was it worth the wait?

The new Surface Book with Performance Base is here… was it worth the wait?

The new Microsoft Surface Book has finally emerged.We have been waiting patiently, but there are now alternatives.

Surface base performance leasing

The Surface Book with Performance Base is their new I7 laptop, with detachable screen, nVidia graphics, and a PEN

The Surface Book Performance Base is a 13.5 inch laptop with a removable screen (for those of you with your head in a hole and missed the last Surface Book). The Surface Book Performance Base isn’t so much as a new product as it is three updated models of the late 2015 version. Each of the Surface Book models incorporates the same Intel “Skylake” Core i7-based Clipboard tablet module but with a new keyboard base which supports a speedier Nividia Geforce GPU. The new higher prices also reflect the update ! With prices at £23.40 per week on a 3 year business lease it’s not cheap though does have 16GB RAM ,512GB Flash. read more

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Lacie is back with TB3 storage

Lacie is back with TB3 storage

Spring is here and we have been seeking out the latest and freshest products for our customers. LaCie offer storage solutions that are aimed at those creative professionals that make up a large part of our client base. They have had a revamp with new Thunderbolt 3 storage….

Storage is imperative for all companies and we believe that LaCie have the most exciting products on the market right now. Storage is often dismissed and forgotten when it comes to your technology purchases, but if you do not have good storage you are leaving yourself open to loosing data in a cyber attack and not being able to work as effectively and efficiently as your PC or MacBook could allow. read more

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Cyber Essentials for your business

Cyber Essentials for your business

Cyber Essentials is a Government initiative to ensure businesses are covered against cyber attack, and to impose an industry standard that you can sign up for and conform to. It has been mandatory for Government suppliers to have Cyber Essentials since 2014 but is due to be extended to many Business to Business suppliers… If you sell B2B then it’s a new ‘Badge’ you will need. It’s a good badge as it will force you to bring your own security up to date by following some simple rules. read more

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How to protect against Ransomware

How to protect against Ransomware

Over the past 2-3 years Ransomware has become an ever increasing threat. Forget threats from Virus intrusions it’s now Ransomware

20% of small businesses suffered an outrage as a result of Ransomware in 2016. Ransomware and Crypto are annoying malicious software’s or Malware which infect your computer/ server and takes your data hostage. The owner will then be expected to pay a ransom to the malware designer to release it all. By encrypting all of your files you cannot access your data and put your company at risk of data/ money loss, embarrassment and legal liability. read more

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Learn your GDPR and you’ll go far!

Learn your GDPR and you’ll go far!

Or just learn about it so that you don’t get a massive fine… 

What is GDPR? Wait for it… General Data Protection Regulation. You may think it sounds dull but it is something that concerns all  business owners This is a regulation, passed by European Parliament to strengthen and unify data protection for individuals of the EU. We are leaving the EU but this Law is staying.

You have until 25th May 2018 to get ready so now is the time to start thinking about it as it will be expensive and time consuming to implement. read more

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Lacie saves the day

Lacie saves the day

We have recently been singing the praises of our preferred storage solution LaCie. We have told you a little about it, but here is why it could save the day!

LaCie leasing

Lacie 6big, 12big and more

The LaCie Professional solutions are manufactured and maintained with creative professionals in mind. Extensive video footage, expansive audio sessions, and sprawling image libraries require a large amount of storage. When these files then need to be edited, it makes sense that all are available in the same place and can be delivered at high speeds. High capacity AND high performance are needed in equal measures, and excitingly, both are available. Lacie feature Segate Enterprise drives that offer 5 years warranty and greater reliability than normal NAS drives found in Drobo and Promise boxes. read more

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Make your staff aware….

Make your staff aware….

When it comes to how to use your IT and behaviour on-line, your staff should know how to conduct themselves- its common sense, isn’t it? Here are some helpful reminders of how you should use your IT……. it’s not just sensible but with Ransomware becoming the number one security issue then these are prudent steps.

 Social Media… Be savvy

I can still remember the first time that I used the internet, it doesn’t feel like it was that long ago. Now I cannot imagine not using it multiple times throughout the day. Using social media has givenit security issue us all a way to communicate, and not just with our friends and family, but with the whole world. So many people now use social media, even those that shun FaceBook often have a Twitter, Instagram or even a Snapchat. It is all very well when we communicate to people we want to see our posts, but what about those that we don’t? read more

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Thunderbolt 3, an exciting, superfast port with a but….

Thunderbolt 3, an exciting, superfast port with a but….

Traditionally a laptop has several different types of port for data transfer USB, SATA or in Apple world it’s called Thunderbolt.. My ancient laptop has about 6… Now though; the shiny MacBook 12″  and the new MacBook Pro Touch Bar are equipped with one- yes ONE type of connection. The MacBook was released with only one connection but the new MacBook Pro 15″ has four.

The Thunderbolt 3 is a super fast wire (40Gbps) that lends itself to all of the data transfer and charging needs that the laptop has. This one type of connection alternatively called USB-C allows the user to connect all their ‘stuff’ though one type of lead and connection. read more

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Insuring a MacBook is becoming difficult ?

Insuring a MacBook is becoming difficult ?

Covering a new Mac is becoming expensive and cover hard to find.

If you have an Apple device, have you noticed any impact on your insurance? Apple devices are very expensive but so common. They have flooded the market with all of their must buy- must have products and even older models cost a lot of money. Whether it be phones, tablets, laptops or computers, Apple are often dominating.

With the influx of Apple devices in to the home and business, the insurance market has changed. Have you noticed a change in your policy recently ? More and more insurance companies are read more

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Apple in your business

Apple in your business

HardSoft are experienced in helping SMB’s find the right technology and financing solutions to empower their staff. We know the importance of having the right technical tools for the job, helping new businesses and expanding companies to update their technology to keep them at the cutting edge of their business.Macbook Pro computers

Apple offer so many great and coordinating products, they are perfect for all businesses- not just creative types. We are finding that our new dynamic companies who want fast processors and ease of use are all choosing Apple. By giving your employees the best tools for the job, they are able to work at a much more efficient and fast pace. HardSoft are also experts at helping you to use all of your Apple products in unison. If you would like to get your iPhones, iPads, iMacs and MacBooks working together for your employees, our technical team are on hand for all of the remote technical support that you need. read more

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How to use your tablet in the classroom

How to use your tablet in the classroom

Are you thinking about leasing Apple iPads or tablets for your classroom but do not know how you will use them? Here are some great ideas and tips for how to get the most from your devices. When it comes to technology and education, tablets are the new holy- grail! It is no wonder; they really are a fantastic addition to the classroom.

Discover 360° videos. You can find so many resources made in 360° video by just Googling it. There is a large library available on YouTube and FaceBook also. If you want to take your class on a trip in to a black hole in space or surfing USA with a 360° virtual reality view, you can use your tablet or iPad. By moving the device and pointing it in different directions you can see all aspects of the view. This is particularly great for exploring different topics such as under the sea or different countries.Apple Leasing read more

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USB-C expansion for the new MacBook Pro’s

USB-C expansion for the new MacBook Pro’s

The new range of 13″ and 15″ MacBook Pro’s have surprised us! It was almost a ‘given’ that the new MacBook Pro would be USB-C and based on the 12″ MacBook we all felt it was only going to deliver us a single port, highly limiting expansion. Apple surprised us by making thinner and lighter Pro’s with 2-4 ports squeezed in! These are USB-C in the non-Apple World or Thunderbolt 3 in Apple World. We are, of course very pleased with this addition, although those with the two ports may feel a little limited to what they can do… There is a choice of expansion options and accessories already here for the Apple MacBook’s BUT it will cost you more to get fully kitted out. read more

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HardSoft for PC’s

HardSoft for PC’s

HardSoft are expanding their products in Ireland !....HardSoft have been trading for over 25 years and we are specialists in both computing and finance. We have been an Apple Authorised reseller for a number of years but it is still important to keep in mind that we are also an authority on HP, Windows, Sony, Lenovo, Fujitsu and many many more! When you are looking to update, expand or replace your IT, HardSoft can offer you the right solution for your company.

Hardsoft newtork and serverLease your PC’s from HardSoft for great prices and packages! We have a huge range of PC’s to choose from- soon to be released on our new website. Our Apple leases have been so well received we will shortly be increasing our PC offers. We currently have a huge range of machines to lease available on the UK website and are looking to match these great offers to our Irish customers. We would LOVE to hear from you with which Windows Laptops and PCs you would like us to offer! Add your preferred computer in the comments below. read more

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Apps and websites recommended for teachers by teachers

Apps and websites recommended for teachers by teachers

At HardSoft we take pride in the close relationship we have with so many of our customers. By keeping in touch we are able to update and share information. This month we have been talking about which Apps and websites are working for you in class and here are the results.

Apps iPad leasingTED- This App is a personal favourite of mine and I always point it out when doing any iPad or tablet training. I have been advised on more than one occasion about TED-Ed. This is a web based platform which allows teachers to share lessons. TED-Ed Lessons worth sharing can be accessed via Safari. There are over 200,000 lessons which have been successfully shared so far… check it out!! read more

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Are you a Start-up business ? Let HardSoft invest

Are you a Start-up business ? Let HardSoft invest

If you are just starting up, HardSoft are still able to help you with your leasing and finance. It is unusual for a company to be so supportive to those just starting out but HardSoft make a special effort to help new businesses get up and running. We will offer the same terms and conditions if you are an established company or you started trading last week. We will also not discriminate between sole traders and limited companies. HardSoft are willing to commit between £1000-£15000 of lease finance which can be used on hardware or software.Apple iMac Sierra read more

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Strongbox PC’s…Bespoke speed

Strongbox PC’s…Bespoke speed

STRONGBOX PC’s are bespoke units which are the perfect answer for Architects, Video editors, Photographers, Animators, colour graders and Music & sound professionals. If you are in need of a particular element for the performance of your machine, this is the one for you! HP with their Z Workstations dominate this market but are often not fast enough and can’t be built to spec.6-Core-Strongbox

Armed with one of these Strongbox Workstations, you can blow away the competition with the amazing products of these machines. A Strongbox will be made exactly how YOU need it to work. You can buy the components which are specifically needed for your software and not spend on the extras that are irrelevant to you. Located at Pinewood Studios this small company is dedicated to building and delivering your perfect Workstation. read more

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Financing your next Computer in Ireland

Financing your next Computer in Ireland

Christmas is fast approaching and there seems like a never ending list of things we all need to buy… Given the situation, you’d be forgiven for tightening the company purse strings. Spending big on new equipment is likely the last thing on your priority list right now, but then you face the risk of falling behind – especially when it comes to technology. There is, however, a solution.

An introduction to leasing

Leasing is essentially the rental of a product; you pay monthly to have constant access to something, instead of paying outright to own it. It’s an approach that most businesses will be familiar with, as it’s commonly used for things like cars, photocopier machines and phone systems. Rarely is it considered for IT equipment, however – despite the obvious benefits on offer. read more

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Protect your PC Network with Malwarebytes.

Protect your PC Network with Malwarebytes.

Recently with the re-emergence of the Crypto Ransomware virus coming back in to our lives and evolving faster than your favourite Pokemon, we have been spreading the word of how to avoid a cyber attack. We are also under constant threat of ‘Malvertising’ – when a legitimate URL you click on contains an infected ad banner. Annoyingly, this leads to the victim being infected without even clicking on an attachment.Malwarebytes solution

If your business has been subjected to a virus, you will know all of the problems that it can cause you. There is a danger of data loss, data being stolen for malicious reasons, computers out of action, spreading the virus to your clients and taking your website out of action. All of this will impact your business costing you legally, regulatory, and damaging your reputation. Companies are paying out thousands of pounds to rectify the damage done. Paying a ransom, calling on an engineer to restore data and the time out of your business for a small offence will still cost you dearly. read more

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Fancy a FREEBIE with your Mac?

Fancy a FREEBIE with your Mac?

Fancy a freebie?? Of course you do! This month, as always, we have some exciting freebies on offer! Join HardSoft and experience our  ‘One Stop Shop’ approach to computer leasing. We offer a complete package service, revolutionising IT leasing. We supply Apple Macs, finance them and provide warranty for all of our products. This means that the customer only has to contact HardSoft to purchase, repair, for technical support and replacement.

Our legendary freebies for this month have been announced! If you are thinking of leasing any Apple iMac or MacBook we are offering one of these two options; read more

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iPads; the perfect companion to learning outside

iPads; the perfect companion to learning outside

You’re in the outdoor classroom; your children find a caterpillar. You stop time to let the children examine it in detail; you guarantee that every child gets the chance to investigate it. You magnify the caterpillar to see how it eats – and make it crawl in slow motion as the class query how it moves.iPad learning

You breezily answer the torrent of questions about what it eats; what kind of butterfly it will become; and are unphased when asked what it tastes like. You seize the moment because you have to hand all the resources you need for the life cycle topic – before taking a minute to record the entire process in the children’s learning journeys. read more

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The all new Dell XPS laptops

The all new Dell XPS laptops

The new Dell XPS laptop range has arrived and is available from HardSoft to lease. Often referred to as the only competitor to the MacBook Pro, this sleek and stylish laptop has a lot to offer…

Available in a 13″ and 15″ screen, the 13″ is a refresh from the 2015 model and the 15″ a new version both are available with optional touch screen. Both have been very well received and not just for their super sleek good looks!Dell XPS 15"

The 13″ dimensions have remained the same at a tiny 304 x 200 x 15mm which make it the smallest of the 13″ laptops on the market at the moment. It weighs a mere 1.2kg (1.29kg for the touchscreen version). For those on the move with their laptop, this is not going to be weighing you down. The 13” can be leased with Core i7 – 6600U – 2.6GHz, 8GB RAM, 256GB SSD, Touchscreen, Intel HD 520 Graphics and Windows 7 or 10 Professional O/S for £12.95 +VAT per week or Core i7 – 6560U – 2.2GHz, 16GB RAM, 1TB PCIe SSD, Touchscreen, Intel Iris Graphics and Windows 7 or 10 Professional O/S for just £16.20 +VAT per week. This option is made to order by Dell so does have a 14 day lead- time. read more

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The Apple ‘Upgrade’ they didn’t mention.

The Apple ‘Upgrade’ they didn’t mention.

Apple announced the iPhone 7 this week and it was all anyone could/ would talk about in the office! We all want one… even if we don’t admit it. The Apple Special Event highlighted all of the great aspects of the new iPhone, Apple Watch and AirPods. It didn’t mention however a few price hikes…

Have you noticed that when new products are released, the Apple website goes down to add the new products? When it came back up this time mind you, there seemed to be a few more changes. You see, the whole world is discussing the horror of a phone with no headphone jack but no one has even mentioned that the Apple Pencil for iPad Pro has gone up in price by nearly £17!! Did you miss it?? It is one of over 430 iOS products out of a possible 481 which have risen in price. When taking a closer look some accessories have risen by as much as 33%… and no one has batted an eyelid. read more

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Swift Playground for your classroom

Swift Playground for your classroom

With the announcement of the new iOS 10 comes some exciting news for schools! Apple is releasing their own coding App! Swift Playgrounds is going to allow students to learn to code using Apples coding language Swift. Now, instead of needing a PC or Laptop as well as your iPads to learn to code, it can be done using your iPad. When iOS 10 is released in July you will be able to download Swift for FREE!

What is code? If you are not familiar with the term code, in its simplest form, code is the language used to make computer software and programs. It Swift App HardSoftis now part of the national curriculum that all students learn to code. read more

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Home user Freebies!

Home user Freebies!

If you are a home user looking for interest free credit on a Mac, HardSoft have some great Mac leasing offers for you. The finance can run over 6, 12 or 18 months and is cheaper than Apple Finance and PC World. Applying is quick and easy with almost instant decisions. As always, HardSoft are squeezing in even more to your lease deal. This month we are offering more exciting FREEBIES!!

If you need some help choosing your freebie, look no further.

  • AVG antiAnti virus-virus.  Keep yourself up to date and protect yourself from malware. With this great freebie, your Mac will be kept up to date with the latest cloud protection. Don’t be held to ransom! Let HardSoft equip you with the protection that you need to secure your data, details, internet payments, websites and reputation!
  • broken-macbook-air-sellAccidental Damage Cover for 1 year. Unavoidable accidents are always a worry! Choose this option and your device is covered against those horrible accidents that isn’t covered by warranty. Anything from spills and drops are covered. We allow a maximum of one claim per device per year. This does not cover loss or theft which can be purchased separately from HardSoft Computers.
  • Cloud storage2TB Cloud Back- Up for 3yrs. Your data is crucial, do not loose it! By backing up your data to the cloud daily, you are choosing the safest form of storage and also very easy to use and access. With 2TB of data allowance, you will be able to store a huge amount of data. Cloud storage also allows you to access your files anywhere on the web, you can even download an App to see your data on a phone or tablet.

HardSoft Power Bank

Along with your freebie, we will also throw in a HardSoft powerbank! charge your USB device on the move with this handy pocket sized battery bank. Perfect for those who need to power their phone on the Pokemon Go! read more

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Minecraft for Education

Minecraft for Education

Yes, the hotly anticipated Minecraft for Education is being released in September! Minecraft has taken the world by storm and there is no denying the students LOVE it.

It is going to be a steep learning curve for the teachers if they are not used tMinecraft HardSofto Minecraft. There is a handy tutorial to get you started with the controls and how to craft. The beauty of Minecraft is that there is no real right or wrong way to play! It is an open world game, so the teacher can create the goals that the students need to reach. The creative and building aspects of Minecraft enable players to construct buildings from blocks. Other activities in the game include exploration, resource gathering and crafting. read more

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Hiscox Cyber and Data risks Insurance

Hiscox Cyber and Data risks Insurance

Lately our blogs have had a bit of a virus focus. With Crypto virus rearing its ugly head- so many of our customers are suffering We want to help you to protect yourselves against malware. Virus’ are spending and updating so quickly, it is imperative that you keep on top of your protection. Because of this, Hiscox UK are now offering Cyber and data risks insurance, we are interested, are you??

Larger companies with dedicated IT staff and firewalls are much more difficult to target than smaller companies. Hackers are no longer sitting in a dark room tapping away for each hack, they write programmes that can run at the touch of a button. As smaller companies are the ideal target,Hiscox insurance company logo it is so important that you are covered. read more

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Professional Graphics Cards

Professional Graphics Cards

If you have invested thousands in your software, you will probably need to upgrade your machine/ graphics card to cope with it. Not even Lewis Hamilton could win a Grand Prix in a Ford Focus… When purchasing expensive graphics software, you need to ensure you have the latest hardware to use it on. Using software such as DiVinci Resolve, AutoCAD and SolidWorks costing between 5-10k it is going to be another large expenditure to get your hardware updated and working for you.

NVIDIA Quadro lineupGraphic workstations are perfect for the creative and design professionals who prefer to be PC based. Sporting dedicated graphics cards, we can support you in your choices and help you to make the best decisions of what to lease. With a large range of graphics cards available to you, we can advise on those which are recommended by the software companies and match it with a Workstation that will be best fit for your requirements. read more

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The HardSoft Bebop Drone 2 has landed…

The HardSoft Bebop Drone 2 has landed…

Its here… the Parrot Bebop Drone 2 is now available to lease from HardSoft and as with all of our packages, we have made up a corker this time!

From estate agents to creative professionals, the Parrot Bebop Drone 2 is in high demand and can do so much for your business. Check out some of the exciting footage caught using a drone… It is so easy to use, you can fly it straight from the box.

So you need a Drone? Even if you don’t you probably want one! I’ll start with the good news, our 24 month lease bundle starts at just £19.90 +VAT per week and includes all of the following. read more

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Is your website mobile friendly??

Is your website mobile friendly??

Well is it??

You shouldn’t underestimate the importance of a mobile friendly website… with so many people working from, gathering information and looking at their phones on the go there is a good chance if your website is accessed- it is from a mobile. Remember, first impressions are hard to forget and if yours is an unhelpful website, you can easily lose customers.

There is a way to check! And if your website is not mobile friendly- then it is time to make a change! If you are using something like WordPress (like we are) where you manage the content yourself, you can follow the Google steps for your provider to work out how to amend the site yourself. read more

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Ruggedised PC Laptops

Ruggedised PC Laptops

If you are using your laptop as a mobile device for work, is it taking daily abuse?? How much punishment can a Laptop really take, especially if you are in the field of some of the harsher working environments- like a building site or a desert? A regular laptop, although mobile, does not always stand up to the assault of regular travel even if meticulously looked after. Durability is at the top of the list for many laptop users in business.

With the introduction of the iPad, tablets are more commonly used in outdoor situations, especially when using for simple tasks where simple of recording of data is needed. The iPad or other tablet solutions however, do not suit those working in very harsh environments and who need the full spec of a laptop. read more

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Easy solution for a second display.

Easy solution for a second display.

The cheap and easy way to get a dual monitor set-up.

This App is so much better than I had expected and has given my old iPad a new lease of life as a portable secondary screen with the use of an App and the charging cable!

Duet appDuet Display is an App for PC and Mac which allows you to utilise your iPhone or iPad as a display for your Mac or PC. The App was developed by ex- Apple engineers who have made it possible to use an iPad or iPhone as a second screen seamlessly. This has been done before, but not this well! The beauty of it is that it looks and feels like an Apple product and is just as easy to use. This App is so much better than I had expected and has given my old iPad a new lease of life as a portable secondary screen with the use of an app and the charging cable! read more

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Brexit- Lease it!

Brexit- Lease it!

In the aftermath of Brexit there is a lot of anxiety. Many people are worried and confused about the effect if will have on the country and themselves financially. Although Osbourne has come out saying that “Britain is ready to confront what the future holds from a position of strength”  Many feel like it is time to batten down the hatches and ride the storm. The question is, how long is that likely to take? With Cameron leaving his post- and a successor not taking his place until the autumn and invoking Article 50, the process of leaving the EU is expected to take up to two years… read more

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Exchange vs. Office 365

Exchange vs. Office 365

What email server software is running your business?? Thinking of making the jump to Microsoft Office 365? Is it the right choice for you though?

Historically Microsoft Exchange Server  was the only option for your email. With the emergence of Office 365 in 2011 you can now opt to keep all of your data in the cloud on Microsoft’s dedicated servers. You do not need to install and maintain an on site email server but it comes as a subscription. Although Microsoft still offer Exchange, they are no longer promoting it in the SME space, preferring for people to take out their subscription based services. There are pro’s and con’s to both methods, ultimately it is your decision… here is some information to help you to make that decision. read more

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Do your own deal day 29th (& 30th) June

Do your own deal day 29th (& 30th) June

Do Your Own Deal Day is here and for one day only………..Our most amazing 24 hours is back- after 2 years and may not be repeated for another 2 years. As it says on the tin Do Your Own Deal Day is about you suggesting a deal and giving us a try – GIVE IT A WHIRL, WE MIGHT SAY YES.

If you’re thinking of getting one or more new Mac’s, PC’s, or other technology supplied by HardSoft then ORDER TODAY for the very best deal… Do not wait for tomorrow or next week- we will be offering one off unique deals TODAY only. read more

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BRING YOUR HOUND TO WORK TODAY

BRING YOUR HOUND TO WORK TODAY

Hurrah! Another reason to blog about dogs… who knew the opportunity would present itself again so soon.

Further to my Office Dog HardSoftHardSoft Office Dog Blog last month, we have bring your dog to work day. Another excuse to take funny pictures of your dog in the office. For those of you who aren’t lucky to have an office dog like us at HardSoft, you have the chance to convince your boss to let you bring your K-9 companion to work!!

On June 24th, it will be the official Bring Your Dog To Work Day. We will be donating this year with our doggy friends Polo and Baxter also coming in for the day. Bring your dog to work day will be raising money for All Dogs Matter which is a charity that is dedicated to rehoming pooches. Many studies have shown that dogs in the workplace reduce stress, you never know, you may get to have an office dog like us here at HardSoft. read more

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Order now- Pay October!

Order now- Pay October!

Interested in leasing the latest technology for your business? We are offering this exciting flexible payment options to new and existing customers. This latest deal gives you the opportunity to receive your equipment ASAP and start paying in October 2016! You can take delivery now and you do not need to part with a penny for three months. 

At HardSoft we are always creating new ways to help ease your cash flow. This amazing deal will enable your business to acquire the latest Apple Mac or PCs. Deferring payments by up to three months at no extra cost. This makes business computer leasing with HardSoft even more affordable. read more

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Tablets or Laptops, that is the question!

Tablets or Laptops, that is the question!

Technology is very present in the classroom and integral to teaching. We are using smart boards to teach, laptops to plan and organise but students now also need to be equipped to learn to use it. Mobile computing has been hitting the classroom in a big way. The days of taking your class to a computer suite or using just one or two PC’s in the classroom are dying out. Now, when you are looking to lease technology for your school, chances are your bank of devices will be held in a trolley and carted around the school or, you may even have one device per student. read more

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Why you need a 12″ MacBook in your life…

Why you need a 12″ MacBook in your life…

Have you been considering the new MacBook recently? We have had some brilliant feedback from customers, detailing why it is working out so well for them. Here are some reasons that the 12″ MacBook might be the laptop for you- there is more to it. This lightweight little beauty is so portable, so pretty and so powerful with tech specs recently updated – available with Core m7 CPU- and built like MacBooks used to be made.macbook HardSoft

I said it, it is lightweight. Does this mean it is flimsy though- not at all! It is actually one of the best build qualities I have seen on an Apple laptop and certainly the stylish and streamlined chassis feels up to the challenge of everyday usage. I would always protect the aluminium case with a case, but this is not essential. A plastic hard case however is cheap and easy to procure from Amazon.
read more

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Toughen up your Mac, Pt 2…

Toughen up your Mac, Pt 2…

Hello again… we are back on the subject of getting your Mac to toughen up. We have changed the settings and told you the things to avoid in Part 1. In Part 2 we are going to focus on the things you need to do to protect against sneaky virus’ and people invading your private Mac space.

UPDATE YOUR SOFTWARE- Many people do not realise that Software updates (for all applications), are helping you to avoid malware. These updates are constantly helSoftware Updates HardSoftping to provide protection against new and irritating malware on the scene. Check our latest Ransomware Blog for more information. Software Updates are available in the App Store. You can access this via the App or if you click on the Apple button you will see the updates available next to the App Store drop down. read more

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Toughen up your Mac! Pt 1

Toughen up your Mac! Pt 1

Have you checked your Mac settings lately? Unless, like me you have children that are more computer savvy at 6 than I was at 26, you probably aren’t too worried about them. Most of us, knowSecurity & Privacy we should be ensuring out Macs are protected (or can protect themselves) but it is always one for the to do list… If you have recently purchased a new Mac or updated to the latest OSX, then really, it is something you need to do NOW. Here are some tips for keeping your precious Mac safe.

Do not let anyone use your admin account- As all of our customers are business users I am sure that you do not let anyone else on your laptops. Who cares if your paMac HardSoftrtner needs to check their email, my daughter is not using my work iPad right now to watch YouTube so that I can get some work done. If however you did need to let someone use your Mac then create another account. The first account you set up on any Mac is the administrator. The administrator can add and delete software… yes, download all sorts of virus ridden rubbish. It will also protect against yourself and others deleting important files. read more

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Macs are made to last just 4 years; why not lease for 3 ?

Macs are made to last just 4 years; why not lease for 3 ?

Did you see it…? Apple officially announced that the average lifecycle for an iPhone is three years, can you believe it ?? People are going mad, £600 for 3 years!! My NOKIA 2310 came free with my phone contract and I expect it will still be working in 2310. I am not surprised, we all update our phone every 12-24 months anyway… does it even matter? I had to take a beat before I realised I was reading the Daily Mail…

In an effort to display how environmentally friendly the company is, Apple have published how long they expect devices to be used BY THEIR FIRST OWNER. There is also an expected first user cycle of 4years for Apple OSX devices (iPhones and iPads). read more

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Fancy a Freebie with your new PC ?

Fancy a Freebie with your new PC ?

Fancy a freebie?? Of course you do! This month, as we have been focusing on the troubles our customers are having with malware, we are introducing a new AVG anti-virus protection to our freebies. Join HardSoft and experience our  ‘One Stop Shop’ approach to computer leasing.  We offer a complete package service, revolutionising IT leasing. We supply devices, finance them and provide warranty for all of our products. This means that the customer only has to contact HardSoft to purchase, repair, for technical support and replacement. read more

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Getting started with iPads in the Classroom

Getting started with iPads in the Classroom

If you are starting out with iPads in your school, the number of Apps recommended and available can be confusing. It can be difficult to know where to start, the expectation of parents and peers adds pressure to a new learning situation. Here is a simple guide to the in-built Apps iPad as standard… and what you can do with them.

iBooks HardSoft iBooks- Similar to a kindle, this app allows you to download and store books including texts. iBooks are often tailored to be interactive, incorporate web links and 3D pictures. Reading on the iPad also means that with a (double) tap of your finger you can highlight a word or piece of text, get a definition, have the selection spoke back to you or add a note (which can be colour coordinated). Notes can be searched for easily from any other page – which makes finding quotes simple! No more of those scribbled in messy texts! read more

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The HardSoft Office Dog Blog

The HardSoft Office Dog Blog

Did you see the article circulating on FaceBook last week about the retiring office dog in Japan? I thought that it was just HardSoft but no, it is an actual thing doggoneit!!

Office dog HardSoft

Polo sending out quotes

Hot diggity dog, I cannot hide my excitement. It is not that I wanted a job at HardSoft just for the office dog, mutt it might be fair to say my heart sang when I found out he existed. Scout is the faithful office dog here at HardSoft in Hertfordshire. He is a Cavapoo (Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and Poodle cross) and completely lovely. He works in the office 5 days a week, at the weekend he likes to relax with long walks and sleeping in the sunshine. All of our employees enjoy having an office dog and embrace taking care of him. Which is lucky, or they would be in the doghouse… read more

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Don’t let RANSOMWARE ruin your day!

Don’t let RANSOMWARE ruin your day!

Lots of this blog is probably going to contain very SHOUTY CAPITALS… This is because I cannot stress enough HOW IMPORTANT it is you read and take action.

Lately the dreaded crypto virus has decided to rear its ugly head. The virus is spreading thick and fast- AGH! Because of this, we believe it is prudent to offer the following URGENT advice to prevent spread of this virus which will lead to LOST DATA AND SERIOUS DOWNTIME. 

Virus HardSoft

Networks and servers are being targeted by opening an email and clicking on an attached document. The Virus has reappeared under the name CryptoLocker Service by someone called Fabken (or complete twat as we like to call him). You know not to open dodgy emails don’t we? It has been said time and again and not just by us. So potent is this threat that it warranted an advisory from the United States Computer Emergency readiness Team- a branch of the Department of Homeland Security read more

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Pic Collage for Kids

Pic Collage for Kids

Due to the popPic collage kids HardSoftular demand in schools for their original App, Pic Collage, Cardinal Blue have now released Pic Collage for kids. The original Pic Collage is also free but has a public gallery which may contain content not suitable for students.

Pic Collage for kids is a safe, free app that can be used across all subjects to make any collage, leaflet, poster or labeled picture.

Photo’s can be taken directly in to the app, chosen from the camera roll or imported directly from the Internet (careful of copyright!). There are a number of preset options for fonts, colours, background patterns and a range of stickers.The pictures, labels and fonts can be moved and rotated with a simple swipe or flick, especially helpful for primary students. read more

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Sonos Audio in the office; case study

Sonos Audio in the office; case study

As a newly authorised reseller of Sonos, it is easy for us to sing their praises. We love the speakers! But what about other people? People who aren’t trying to sell them? I went down to the Blue Dog offices in London to see how they are getting on with Sonos in their office.

Sonos HardSoft Leasing

Blue Dog are a Graphic Design agency based in the heart of Shoreditch. They’ve been offering creative design, branding solutions, animation, digital design and video production to a wide variety of clients since 1996. With 13 staff in the office, they are an extremely busy and brilliant bunch. Not only do they have a dog (yes a blue-ish one) called Roman who is as cute as pie, they also have Sonos!! Bonza… read more

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The top 5 SEXIEST Windows Laptops

The top 5 SEXIEST Windows Laptops

Laptops are getting hotter and hotter… it is true, the aesthetics of laptops are now as important as their components. With smooth, sleek designs and beautiful materials being used to build them, we cannot get enough of these exquisite little bad boys. Here is a list of the HardSoft top 5 as voted for by our fully qualified sales team.

 5. Dell XPS 13. Steve in the office has one of these, he is always telling me howDell laptop HardSoft great it is. From him, that is praise enough! This little gem has a borderless infinity edge display in full HD. It also boasts a 256GB SSD which provides fast, reliable and silent storage. It looks damn sexy too! If you want your laptop to look this good, our leasing solutions start at just £11.75 +VAT per week on this product. read more

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