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Angie's List Super Service Awards!
The On Button was awarded Angie's List Super Service Awards for 2013 & 2014! Thank you to our wonderful clients, it has been a pleasure helping you!
Technology problems solved...

Computer virus: "...very quick response to my call regarding a virus on my computer... professional and very knowledgable... we will be recommending TheONbutton to my friends." Lynn, Hillsborough NC

Apple Mac computer training: "Neil's prompt service and vast knowledge of computers has been a godsend. At this point I can't imagine life without him!" Margaret, Chapel Hill NC

Computer issue troubleshooting: "Excellent response to issues dealing with the home computer. All problems were solved and his explanations were easily understood." Jane, Durham NC

Laptop memory upgrade: "Punctual and very effective service! Highly recommend." Mike, Chapel Hill, NC

Computer performance tune-up: "I had the good fortune of finding TheONbutton. Neil was prompt, friendly, knowledgeable, fast, efficient, and affordable. I give him my highest recommendation!" Sean, Durham NC

Read more reviews of TheONbutton...

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More testimonials

Wireless Internet connection problem: "Neil got our wireless router and modem going again that Time Warner and TP Link help desks had struggled with. We will definitely use the TheONbutton again should problems arise." Jeff, Durham NC

Computer virus: "...very quick response to my call regarding a virus on my computer...professional and very knowledgable...we will be recommending TheONbutton to my friends." Lynn, Hillsborough NC

Read more reviews of TheONbutton...

What's Going ON?

We love tech and here's where you find out just how much! Our blog covers tips, tech, gadgets and other computer service related stuff in Durham and beyond! Let us know what you think by sending us a comment, we love reading them and we promise to do our best to respond!


Top 10 computer, phone and technology questions

TheONbutton is all about sharing knowledge, so I wanted to share answers to 10 popular computer, phone and technology questions that people often ask me. I hope this is useful educational information and please feel free to pass this on to friends who may also find it useful!

1. Help! I forgot my Mac's password and there's no way to reset it! How do I install new software without it?

If you forget the password for your Mac don't worry, it can be reset but the process is not immediately obvious. When the original installation disc that came with your Mac is inserted, the password reset option can be accessed via the Utilities menu on the installation disc. Even if you don't have the installation disc a new Administrator account can be created. Did you know that the MacBook Air is now the best selling Mac computer in Apple's range?

2. I bought my laptop a year ago and now the battery only lasts half as long as it should. Why has this happened? 

Leaving your laptop plugged in constantly with the battery inserted will reduce the lifespan of the battery. Allow the battery to completely drain at least every two weeks and either remove the battery or the power cable when the battery is fully charged. Did you know that some higher end laptops have a feature that cuts out charging to the battery when it is fully charged? 

3. How do I reorganize the apps on the home screen of my phone?

iPhones, Android phones, iPads and iPod touches have a similar process for reorganizing apps on their home screen. Press and hold the icon of the app you want to move until it pops out, then drag it to the new location. On Android phones, let go of the icon and it will fix into place. On the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch, press the home button to fix the icon in its new location. Did you know that you can organize apps into folders on the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch by dragging one app on top of another?

4. My wireless Internet doesn't cover all of my home, can I buy an extender?

Buying a modern long range wireless Internet router for $50-100 is typically more cost effective than buying an extender to increase the range of an old one. Range extenders can be unreliable and they will be restricted to the maximum data speed of you older-technology router. A quality modern router should be able to provide wireless Internet coverage throughout a regular sized home including its garden. Did you know that the slowe, shorter range wireless technology can be identified on the retail box by the tech codename 802.11g and the faster, longer range one is called 802.11n?

5. My web browser sometimes stops and I see a message saying that 'Flash' has stopped working, why is this?

Flash is an Internet add-on that enables some multimedia content like videos and advertisements on websites. It sometimes makes websites run slowly and can occasionally causes computers to crash. Most Internet browsers allow users to turn Flash off and this can save a lot of battery consumption. I tend to turn Flash off unless I'm using a website that won't work without it, such as Hulu. The good news is that many websites are being updated so that they don't need to use Flash. The iPad and iPhone don't use Flash at all and new versions of Flash are no longer being developed for Android phones or tablets either. Did you know that you can watch YouTube using HTML5 instead of Flash?

6. I want to try Internet TV, but there are so many Internet TV boxes. Which one should I get?

There is a wide range nowadays because Internet TV has become so popular. The Apple TV is a great choice for households that have lots of Apple equipment because the media sharing and remote control capabilities tie in elegantly with the iPad, iPhone and iPod touch. Non-Apple households might prefer a Roku XS or Xbox 360 for Internet TV viewing, which sacrifice the Apple media sharing capabilities but add more viewing options like Hulu Plus. Did you know that over 30% of peak time US Internet traffic is from households watching Netflix! 

7. I'm buying someone a games console for a gift, which ones are the most popular?

The Xbox 360 is currently the best selling living room games console. Apple's iPod touch is the most popular handheld gaming console, even though it has a wide range of other capabilities. Did you know the largest demographic for gaming is the 25-34 age group?

8. I want to get my email on the go but I don't want an expensive smartphone data plan, what options do I have?

Smartphones are now as affordable as old style phones. Virgin Mobile has a combined voice, text and data plan starting at $35 per month so there's no need to hang on to that old phone any longer! T-Mobile has also launched no-contract smartphone plans for around $60 per month including voice, text and data service. Did you know that Virgin Mobile and Boost Mobile are both part of Sprint?

9. My GMail sometimes doesn't sync to my iPhone properly, what am I doing wrong?

If you want your GMail to integrate into your other email boxes and synchronize calendars reliably on your iPhone, try setting it up as an Exchange account. That configuration synchronizes more reliably than using the GMail account setup process, and it integrates your email into your other accounts unlike the GMail app from the App Store. Did you know that Hotmail is a more widely used email service than GMail by a significant margin?

10. Is it OK to do online banking using a coffee shop's wireless Internet connection?

I never recommend performing sensitive online transactions using public unsecured networks like those in most coffee shops. Other users on the same network might be able to intercept your data traffic and someone sitting nearby may be able to view sensitive information on your screen. Did you know that there is a popular Firefox plug-in called Firesheep that allows its user to take over someone else's unencrypted website log-in credentials on a public network? Be careful out there!

Happy New Year! 

Neil Berman, Helper-in-Chief, TheONbutton


Didn't get the gift you wanted? Treat yourself to one of these fab five!

Fear not, here are some ways to bless yourself with exactly what you need! You've been an angel about giving this Holiday Season, so let's make sure you're also giving to yourself...

1. Bless Your Dreams: Jawbone UP

There's nothing worse that being woken by an unfeeling alarm clock just as you're landing the winning Superbowl touchdown. Jawbone thinks it's solved this problem with its revolutionary UP wristband that monitors your sleep patterns and wakes you during your lighter sleep moments. UP will also help you to monitor other aspects of your lifestyle to inspire you to be healthier, and isn't that one of our annual New Year's resolutions? $99 from Jawbone.

2. Bless Your Ears: Yamaha Stereo/Surround Receiver

Even amateur audiophiles will probably be delighted by the audio quality of the affordably priced Yamaha RX-V371 receiver. This box of tricks can act as a superb stereo or surround sound receiver, with 4 HDMI inputs to accommodate your Blu-ray player, games console or Apple TV and plenty of power for average size living rooms. I installed some of these during 2011 and they're solid performers. $229.99 from BestBuy.

3. Bless Your Memory: ZTE Warp Smartphone

Remembering those appointments and road directions is too hard these days. The ZTE Warp is a great value Android smartphone which easily connects to Google Calendar and has free turn-by-turn GPS navigation, so you can leave the map book at home. Best of all its unlimited voice, text and data plan on Boost Mobile only costs $55 a month and can reduce to just $40 after 18 months. $199.99 from Boost Mobile.

4. Bless Your Fingers: Apple iPad 2 (16GB WiFi)

Ditch the mouse and give your fingers a workout! Most folks will get by just fine with the entry level iPad 2. It works anywhere that has wireless Internet, so when you're away from home you can use it at many coffee shops and hotels while traveling. The iPad is still the #1 tablet on the market, and its apps range from HD movie production to kids education. New York Times subscribers might find that the iPad replaces their Sunday paper. $499 from Apple.

5. Bless Your Partner: TomTom VIA 1505TM

Travel without arguments with this 5" GPS that offers free map and traffic updates for the life of the unit. The VIA 1505TM has a vastly improved screen compared to previous TomToms and the traffic service will route around snarl-ups to get you to your destination as quickly as possible. Best of all you will be able to enjoy car conversations that omit the customary navigation arguments. $115.99 (at time of writing) from Amazon.


Don't leave loved ones at the mercy of the instruction manual this Holiday season!

Buying and receiving gifts is wonderful, but struggling with the resulting manuals, wires and settings is not! For some people this can take hours, days or never happen at all for busy people!

We can take care of that unpleasant task for you or a loved one and we love doing it so you will always get our greatest care and attention! This makes a great gift for someone or for yourself. Best of all we're available throughout the Holiday season, so here are some stress-relieving services:

iPhone, iPad, Kindle Fire and smartphone set up and coaching

  1. Unpacking the device, setting it up and connecting it to your home Internet. Configuring it to send and receive email.
  2. Coaching on how to use email, Internet services and how to download and use apps.
  3. Coaching on taking photos, movies, listening to music and any other questions you may have.

Apple Mac and Windows PC computers

  1. Unpacking the computer, setting it up and getting it connected to your home Internet.
  2. Downloading the latest Mac or Windows updates and registering the computer so it is ready to use.
  3. Installing essential software like anti-virus and Flash so you can browse the Internet safely. Setting up Skype and Netflix.

Games consoles (Xbox, Playstation, Wii or handheld system)

  1. Unpacking and connecting the game system to your TV, home theater system and home Internet
  2. Downloading the latest software from the Internet so the console is ready to use
  3. Setting up Netflix and the necessary online gaming services like Xbox Live for online play

Call Neil at TheONbutton on 919-695-3899 for pricing and availability!


Raleigh, Apple and Santa's 3.7 billion appointments!

I wanted to share this with you because it's so cute, especially Siri's parting line to Santa. Plus, Raleigh makes the bigtime! I'm sure Durham, Chapel Hill and the rest of the Triangle are in that 3.7 billion too!


Boost Mobile ZTE Warp Review HD

Here's an awesome smartphone for anyone looking for an Android phone on a prepaid carrier. The Boost Mobile ZTE Warp has a large 4.3" screen, a fast 1GHz processor and a bright screen. The 5 megapixel camera is not the best out there but overall we think it's fantastic budget Android phone with no contract. It bests Virgin Mobile's Motorola Triumph on reliability and has a larger and more vivid screen than T-Mobile's recent Samsung Exhibit II 4G.

See what you think...

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