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Five solid laptops for students

If you're a student looking for a new laptop, we've got a few suggestions for you.

A good laptop is absolutely necessary in school to crank out papers, finish assignments, and conduct research. Whether you're wrapping up a thesis or trying to survive your first year of high school, we've got some solid laptops lined up here that are portable, powerful, and fits into the modest student budget.

Many tablets (namely the Surface Pro 3) can do double duty as laptop replacements, especially if you don't want to spend a lot of money, put a premium on portability, and need freehand writing support for class notes. Be sure to read up on our latest tablet coverage to see what's around. Also, check in with your school and shop around for educational discounts. They're more common than you think.

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Update: Well that didn't take long. It looks like 6tag is back and ready to download.

Original story: This morning, Rudy Huyn released 6tag 4.0, bringing some of the latest Instagram features to Windows Phone like new filters and finally being able to edit posts.

One issue many of you are noticing is that after you update your existing 6tag app, the program fails to load. Instead, it back out and goes back to your Start screen (or menu). Turns out it is a cache incompatibility problems and uninstalling and reinstalling the app appears to fix it.

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Earlier this week, Microsoft released a new software update for the Microsoft Band that enabled keyboard support, Quick Read, and a new Run tile. Additionally, the companion Microsoft Health app was updated as well, bringing many new features including Microsoft HealthVault integration.

Tonight, another new firmware software update is going out. We first noticed it when our Microsoft Health app stopped syncing due to a request for an upgrade.

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Although app and OS updates are great, what is even better is when companies post the entire changelog of what exactly is new. Luckily for us, AT&T agrees with this idea.

Earlier today, AT&T released the Lumia Denim software update for their Lumia 1520 and now the company has posted a very detailed listing of what has changed.

Most of the features in the update are already known, but things like the 578MB file size or Femtocell closed subscriber group (CSG) access being enabled are certainly unique.

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AT&T has finally come around to getting the Lumia Denim update, at least for one of its flagship devices, the Lumia 1520.

Windows Phone 8.1.1 (build 14219) and firmware 02540.00019.14484.37028 are now live starting at 1 pm ET. Users can head into Settings > Phone Update and 'check for update' to grab the necessary files. If you are enrolled in the Preview for Developers program, you can leave it enabled.

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Telling a tale of superb Microsoft customer service

No-one ever talks about great customer service. As someone who spent a past life working in retail, I'm only too aware of this. Not once would you hear of one of your customers seeking out the manager to praise your efforts, no matter how much you had done. But should a customer be unhappy, well, everyone heard about it. That seems to be the way, regardless of the company. "Oh, xxx company is terrible, worst service ever." Perhaps because we're usually calling for help when something bad has happened, or we're in a fix we just can't get out of.

So I want to talk about the good. I want to speak a little about how the UK Microsoft Surface support team gave excellent service and helped me out when all I saw was an expensive bill headed my way. My Surface Pro 3 got a cracked screen.

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Send notes to your Microsoft Band with Send2Band

With the recent launch of Microsoft Band SDK Developer Preview, we expect to see some new apps for the Microsoft Band from third party developers. One new app just caught our attention. It's called Send2Band. It lets you can send messages to your Microsoft Band by writing them directly from the app on your phone or through the built-in Windows Phone sharing function. See it how works in our hands-on video.

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The Instagram client 6tag version 4.0 barely got out the door this morning before being temporarily pulled due to a caching issue. While we wait for the 4.0.0.1 fix to roll out to the Store, it is worth chewing on that version 5.0 – likely not due for many months – is planned to be a universal app for Windows Phone and Windows.

Many developers are already contemplating the Windows 10 OS refresh and new developer tools, which are set to be unveiled later this spring at Microsoft's Build 2015 conference. Huyn is a connected developer, often featured by Microsoft so thinking about a universal app using Windows 10 seems like a no-brainer for the prolific developer.

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There are plenty of quality children's apps and games in the Windows Phone Store. Titles that not only will keep our kids entertained but will also teach them a thing or two along the way. Monstrous Math is one such Windows Phone app (or is it a game?) that hopes to teach children the basic math skills in a fun, animated app.

Monstrous Math covers addition, subtraction, multiplication and division problems with each area having 12 stages. Each stage has five randomly generated equations, giving the game a little longevity. Available for low-memory Windows Phones, as well as Windows 8 devices, Monstrous Math is a strong option to consider for those with younger Windows Phone fans with a need exercise their math muscles.

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