Walt Mossberg

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Instant Google Results

Q:

Is there a way to turn off the automated, instant search results that appear rapidly when doing a Google search?

Most of the time I find them very annoying.

A:

Google says you can turn off the feature by clicking on the gear icon at the top right of any search results page and selecting “Search Settings.”

From there, go to the section called “Google Instant Predictions,” select “Never Show Instant Results,” and then click the “Save” box at the bottom of the page.

Q:

I am thinking of buying a Droid smartphone from Motorola and am concerned about the privacy of my personal data.

I was told by a Best Buy salesman that Android phones only back up their data to the cloud and don’t store it on one’s home PC like my current phone or the Apple iPhone. Is this true?

A:

Most, if not all, Android phones I’ve seen can optionally back up your personal data, such as contacts, to the cloud and don’t come with a computer program like Apple’s iTunes that does so. In fact, even Apple is now optionally allowing online backup, instead of backup to a computer. There are some third-party apps, which I haven’t tested, that will back up an Android phone to a PC. One is called Wondershare MobileGo for Android, and is at http://bit.ly/MTYaGJ.

Q:

I am looking at buying a well-equipped Windows 7 laptop, but wonder whether it would it be better to wait for the newer models to come out, especially as I worry that it might be costly to upgrade to Windows 8?

A:

Unless your current laptop is unusable, or you fear it’ll become so soon, I’d wait. Not only will you have more choices in the fall, they will be much better designed for Windows 8.

Write to Walt at walt.mossberg@wsj.com


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