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IONOS web hosting review
8:32 pm | August 29, 2020

Author: admin | Category: Computers Gadgets | Tags: | Comments: Off

Founded in Germany in 1988, IONOS (formerly known as 1&1 Internet) is a web hosting giant with 2,000 employees, 10 data centers, more than 90,000 servers and 8 million customer contracts worldwide.

Putting that into perspective, Datanyze says IONOS has 6.86% share of the web hosting market: that's ahead of everyone but Google Cloud (7.82%), Amazon AWS (10.96%) and GoDaddy (14.99%).

Products

There are products covering every area (Image credit: 1&1 IONOS)

What types of hosting does IONOS offer? 

IONOS has plans covering a very wide range of hosting types and needs. Low cost shared hosting, a website builder and managed WordPress plans are ideal for personal and small business sites.

More powerful VPS and dedicated hosting have the resources to handle more demanding business and ecommerce sites (and if it's web stores you're after, there's managed WooCommerce hosting, too).

Windows ASP.NET hosting and the Github-friendly Deploy Now are value plans for developers and expert users.

Need even more power? IONOS' high-powered and ultra-reliable cloud servers have the resources to cope with even the most heavyweight, feature-packed and business-critical sites.

There isn't the space to cover every detail of what IONOS has to offer, but scroll down and we'll break down the company's key ranges, explore their pros and cons, and find out which products could work for you.

IONOS shared hosting homepage

(Image credit: IONOS)

IONOS shared hosting

Shared hosting is a scheme where several websites are hosted on the same server. It's cheap, because server costs are shared between all the accounts. With many sites sharing the same CPU, RAM and network connection, performance may be poor. But a good shared hosting package has more than enough power for most low-traffic blogs, personal and small business sites.

IONOS has three shared hosting plans.

The highlights: every plan has free SSL, a free domain, free daily backups and easy WordPress installation. 

The single site starter plan is reasonably priced at $4 a month in year one, $6 on renewal.

The mid-range Business plan ramps up speeds by adding more resources, supports unlimited websites, and - thanks to a spectacular introductory offer - is only $0.50 a month for year one, $10 a month after that.

The highest Expert plan adds even more resources, throws in SiteScan malware protection, a Content Delivery Network (CDN) and analytics to monitor your website traffic, yet it's still only $8 a month in year one, $16 on renewal.

On the down side, IONOS doesn't offer free migration to help import your site from a previous host, and all the plans give you just one email account. It's a good one (2GB inbox, spam filtering), but that's no help if you need more. 

Our tests found IONOS Business plan has below average performance, too (more on that, later). IONOS shared hosting could still be a decent choice if you can live with just one email account. 

If the email is an issue but value is important, also consider Hostinger and HostGator for their low starter prices, extended email abilities and lengthy feature lists. Or if it's speed you're after, A2 Hosting and InMotion Hosting go beyond the basics with plenty of advanced performance-boosting tech.

IONOS WordPress hosting homepage

WordPress plans range from seriously cheap to very powerful (Image credit: IONOS)

IONOS WordPress hosting

WordPress is a hugely popular website creation tool which can be used to create anything from a simple personal site, to a huge and feature-packed international web store.

IONOS Managed WordPress hosting plans are priced almost identically to the shared range (special offer of $0.50 a month for the mid-range plan, $3 to $8 a month for the other plans, $6 to $8 on renewal), and the main features are similar: free domain, free SSL, still no free migration, but you do get daily backups.

There are important differences, too. Improved email support means the mid-range plan supports five email addresses, the top plan has ten. All plans include scanning for malware, and the top plan can remove any threats it finds. There's also one significant downgrade: the shared hosting plans support unlimited websites, but you can only have one managed WordPress project.

WordPress-specific additions include the WP Assistant to build a simple initial site for you, automated WordPress updates, and free themes (pre-built website designs), perhaps handy if you'd like to give your site a new look and feel.

There's nothing outstanding here, but these plans do give you fractionally more WordPress functionality for the same price, and that works for us. If you're looking to master WordPress, you're only building small or simple sites, and speeds really don't matter, getting a year of the Business plan for $6 is an amazing deal.

The IONOS WP Pro range is aimed at business users or anyone who needs more features and speed. IONOS says extra server resources deliver a 300% speed increase overall. There are automatic and manual backups, smarter automatic updates to reduce the chance of a buggy security patch breaking your site, and the ability to website changes before you put them live.

All this power comes at a cost. To begin to get the full speed benefits you'll need the Advanced WP Pro plan, priced from $40 a month on the annual plan ($48 billed monthly.) But this is fair value for what you're getting, and overall IONOS WP Pro is worth a look for business users or anyone with large or high-traffic sites.

If you're more interested in features than price, check out Bluehost's WP Pro plans (yes, they do have the same name). Speeds are good and they include more business-related tools, including SEO tools, and analytics to monitor website traffic.

But if cost is absolutely key, A2 Hosting's managed WordPress range offers top performance and lots of features from $23.99 billed monthly.

IONOS VPS hosting homepage screenshot

(Image credit: IONOS)

IONOS VPS hosting

VPS (Virtual Private Server) hosting improves on shared hosting by giving you more resources and ensuring only you get to use them, hugely improving performance. While shared hosting accounts can sometimes handle only ten to twenty thousand visits a month, a good VPS can cope with hundreds of thousands, maybe more.

IONOS has an impressive 13 VPS hosting plans, giving your far more choice than most. All plans include unlimited traffic, unlimited email accounts (up to your plan storage limit), free SSL, 24/7 support, the ability to host your VPS in the USA, UK, Germany or Spain, and a 99.99% uptime guarantee.

The plans start with a 1 CPU core, 512MB RAM and 10GB storage system for a tiny $2 a month. That's cheap, but so underpowered you can do barely anything with it. The most powerful plan has 8 cores, 24GB RAM and 240GB RAM, and it's good value at $24 a month for the first six months, $45 afterwards.

Unusually, most VPS plans can come with Windows, though get ready for a big leap in price: it'll cost an extra $10 per core. (That's due to Microsoft's licensing rules, though, so don't blame IONOS). These are quality products, and could work for anyone with a demanding, high-traffic or business-critical site. 

Consider Hostwinds, too. It has more powerful high-end plans for heavyweight projects (up to 16 cores); uptime is better at 99.9999%; there's a 1Gbps connection to the outside world, and it's cheaper in many configurations. Worth a look, especially for experienced users looking for more control.

IONOS dedicated server homepage

Dedicated servers are cheap but a little short on power and configurability (Image credit: IONOS)

IONOS dedicated hosting

Dedicated hosting sits right at the top of the hosting tree. There's no sharing of RAM, network connection or anything else, because the entire server is yours. It's the perfect choice for serious high-traffic sites which not only need the best possible speeds, but they have to deliver all of the time (news sites, busy web stores, anywhere poor performance might hit your bottom line).

IONOS has only four dedicated server plans, far fewer than the specialist competition. All plans include a free domain, free SSL, malware scanning, Railgun CDN to accelerate speeds, and unlimited traffic. 

Prices start cheap at $65 billed monthly for an Intel Atom C2750, 8GB RAM, 240GB SSD plan. At the top of the range, an Intel Xeon E3-1270 V6 CPU, 64GB RAM, 800GB SSD server is $160 billed monthly. You can equip each server with regular hard drives (HDD) rather than solid-state drives (SSD), reducing speed a little, but raising capacity to a maximum of 2TB.

These plans are good value, and a decent choice for experienced business users who need speedy and reliable hosting, but are also on a tight budget.

If you're looking for more choice or power at the top end of the range, though, check out Hostwinds. As with VPS, it also starts cheap, but has many more plans, and has more configuration options, including support for Windows hosting.

IONOS website builder service homepage

(Image credit: IONOS)

Does IONOS have a website builder? 

If you don't have a website, or much idea of how to get one, then a website builder is the simplest solution. Most come with a range of pre-built site designs called templates, and all you have to do is choose one you like, drag and drop elements you need on a page (text, images, maps, videos, contact forms), then customize the site with your own content.

IONOS has a simple website builder with free templates, a 17,000+ royalty-free image library, a free domain, a single email account (yes, just one) and free SSL.

The Starter plan is cheap at just $1 a month for year one, $5 on renewal. The Plus plan adds blog support and many more design and page options (photo galleries, social media support, integrating business apps such as bookings and reviews.) It's $5 a month for 12 months, $10 on renewal.

You can add a web store to all plans from no initial cost at all on the Starter plan (it's still $1 a month for the first year, $12 on renewal), to an extra $15 on the highest plan ($25 a month for six months, then $35). All plans give you payment and shipping support, and allow selling via Facebook and Instagram.

This is a useful product, but not outstanding. There aren't many templates, they're not great quality, the editor is basic, the starter plan is missing some basic abilities (no image slider, can't integrate social media Like/Follow buttons), and these days we expect more than just one email address per plan. But you can't beat the price, and if you'd like to build a small site or web store, just learn the basics, and you can live with its limitations, $1 a month for the Starter account is an exceptional deal.

IONOS web store homepage screenshot

(Image credit: IONOS)

Can you build a web store with IONOS? 

As we're discussed above, IONOS' website builder supports building a web store with up to 10,000 products. But it's short on features and based on IONOS' slower-than-average shared hosting, making it best suited to small or low-traffic sites.

A separate eCommerce Builder adds more professional features. It allows you to sell digital products, supports favorites and wish lists, adds volume discounts, enables selling on Amazon and eBay, and more. The top plan is priced at $35 a month for the first six months of the annual plan, $50 afterwards. That's a better choice for larger stores, or if you've real ecommerce ambitions.

Other options include using popular platforms such as WooCommerce, PrestaShop or OpenCart to build your store. IONOS has simple shared hosting plans for each, priced from $0.50 a month in year one, $8 a month afterwards, or you can buy a VPS or dedicated hosting plan to get faster and more reliable performance. This might take more work, as you'll have to master something like WooCommerce largely on your own. These platforms are hugely capable, though, and have the power to build and manage the largest ecommerce projects.

This is a decent set of plans covering just every type of user, but there are still other options worth considering. HostGator's Gator and Hostinger's website builder support building basic web stores at minimal cost; Wix has better store templates and many more features, and Bluehost's WooCommerce plans include an array of business-friendly marketing and SEO extras.

IONOS uptime results

(Image credit: Uptime.com)

How fast is IONOS? 

Every web host promises lightning speeds, but do they really deliver? To find out, we sign up for a shared hosting plan, set up a simple website using a standard WordPress template, then use some of the best testing and monitoring services around to see exactly how it performs.

Uptime.com checks our site's availability by accessing a test page every five minutes for fourteen days. IONOS scored a perfect 100% uptime, meaning our site was available for every visit. 

IONOS GTMetrix results

(Image credit: GTMetrix)

Next, GTmetrix accessed a test page and calculated how long it took to display the main content, a value technically known as Largest Contentful Paint, or LCP. The lower the LCP, the quicker your pages are likely to appear in the browser, and the happier your visitors are likely to be.

IONOS' LCP was a disappointing 1.3 seconds, placing it 13th out of our last 15 tests (most providers scored between 0.6 to 0.8 seconds). That's not a disaster - 1.3 seconds is still an acceptable time - but it's noticeably slower than many competitors.

IONOS K6 results

(Image credit: K6)

Measuring the best possible load times for a single user is important, but it's also useful to know how a site performs when it's really busy. We check for this by using the stress-testing service k6 to unleash 20 visitors simultaneously and monitor what happens.

IONOS scored poorly here, too, with our site averaging only 9.8 requests per second (most providers manage 14 to 16). If you've a low-traffic site and are unlikely to have 5 simultaneous users, let alone ten, that also might not matter very much. But again, it's a noticeably worse performance than many competitors.

(Please note, our results are based on the performance of the IONOS Business shared hosting plan. If you're opting for the Expert plan, VPS or dedicated hosting, you'll get far more system resources and may see very different speeds.)

IONOS web account dashboard

IONOS web account dashboard (Image credit: IONOS)

How easy is IONOS to use? 

Log into many web hosts and you'll find familiar industry-standard platforms: WHM to manage your accounts, cPanel for all your key website management tasks, Softaculous to reliably install and then manage WordPress. That's generally good news, partly because they're top quality tools (which is why they became industry standards), but also because if you've any experience of web hosting, you're likely to know how to use these already.

IONOS ditches all these in favor of its own custom control panels. That has some advantages (it probably saves a pile of cash in license fees, helping IONOS keep its prices low), but it also means even expert users will have to spend some time exploring the system to find the functions they need.

This isn't as easy as we'd like. Functions aren't always organized intuitively, and common tasks, such as logging into a WordPress site, took more time to locate than we expected.

IONOS' website search engine helps a little. Enter 'WordPress', say, and it doesn't just list top WordPress support articles. A 'Product and Actions' includes control panel tasks such as 'Install WordPress', and clicking these links takes you directly to that page. It's a good idea but doesn't quite work everywhere. We tried to find the right keywords to show a WordPress newbie how they could log into the dashboard, for instance, but never quite managed it.

If you're an experienced user who makes in-depth use of all kinds of low-level cPanel and other features, this could easily be an issue. Even once you've found the functions you need, there's no guarantee they'll deliver precisely the same results.

But if you're only after the hosting management basics - configure your domain, set up some email addresses, install WordPress - then this may not matter very much. Sure, it might take you a few extra minutes to master the control panel basics, but after that you'll use IONOS much like any other host.

IONOS customer support

Support is available via phone and live chat (Image credit: IONOS)

What is IONOS support like? 

IONOS offers support via its website knowledgebase, phone, live chat and email.

The support site has a huge number of articles, sensibly organized into categories such as WordPress, Email, Domains and SSL Certificates. Some of these articles are a little short, but there's a lot of valuable information here. 

Unusually, telephone support doesn't simply mean 'dial this international number and be left on hold wondering what this is going to cost.' You can book an appointment and have the company call you. 

When we tried this at 12:10pm, the site offered us 15 minutes slots from only 1pm, so you probably won't have long to wait. But if that's not convenient, you can book up to four days ahead from 8am to 8pm.

We set up an appointment, and sure enough, a call arrived within 30 seconds of our starting slot time. The agent listened carefully to our query about installing WordPress on subdomains, clearly explained what we needed to do, and sent us links with more advice via email. Impressive.

If you prefer live chat or email, they also work well, with speedy and accurate replies quickly pointing us in the right direction.

Final verdict

IONOS cuts a few corners with its shared hosting (no free migration, only one email account, below-par performance), but they're still great value. And if you need more, there's a wide range of WordPress plans, and the company has the VPS, dedicated and cloud hosting products to cater for everyone from enthusiastic amateurs to SMB and enterprise users. 

Sign up for 1&1 Ionos US deals here.

Sign up for 1&1 Ionos UK deals here.


IONOS FAQs

What payment types does IONOS support?

IONOS accepts payment by card and PayPal. 

Does IONOS offer refunds?

IONOS has a general 30-day money-back period covering most hosting products and a handful of other services (check the small print for the precise details).

Domains, SSL certificates, cloud and bare metal servers are not included.

Does IONOS have an uptime guarantee?

IONOS has a 99.99% uptime guarantee for its hosted web pages. If the company doesn't hit the target, you can claim an account credit to match the real downtime (90 minutes downtime, your account is credited with the cost of 90 minutes hosting).

At first glance, that looks better than most providers, who only offer a 99.9% uptime guarantee. But limiting compensation to the actual downtime isn't as generous. The top-of-the-range shared hosting plan is $8 a month in the first year, for instance, or $0.263 a day. If your site is down for eight hours, that could be a disaster for you, but even IONOS admits responsibility, you'll get just $0.09. It's not even worth your time asking.

ScalaHosting 'only' offers a 99.9% guarantee, but if its uptime is less than 99% (that's only seven hours, 18 minutes and 17 seconds in a month) you'll qualify for a whole month. That's still not a huge amount, and it's best to have no downtime at all, but we like the principle: if the service doesn't hit a certain standard, you effectively get it for free.

IONOS choice of data centers

Host your site with a choice of data centers (Image credit: IONOS)

Where are IONOS's data centers?

IONOS has ten data centers located in the USA, Germany, UK and Spain.

The company allows you to choose your preferred data center for some of its more high-end products. You can't pick a data center if you're buying regular shared hosting, for instance, but you do get the option with VPS plans.

What is my IONOS IP address?

Log into your IONOS control panel.

Click Domains and SSL, then find and click your domain in the list.

Click the DNS tab.

Scroll down and look for a record with the type A, the host name @ (or www) and the service 'Webhosting.'

Your website server's IP address is displayed in the Value column for that A record.

What are IONOS's nameservers?

If you sign up for IONOS hosting but are using a domain managed elsewhere, you may need to find IONOS' nameservers to connect the domain to your hosting plan. Sounds complicated, but fortunately it only takes a few clicks.

Log into your IONOS control panel.

Click Domains and SSL, then find and click your domain in the list.

Click the Nameserver tab and the control panel displays the IONOS nameservers for your account.

IONOS cancel page

(Image credit: IONOS)

How do I cancel an IONOS product?

Log into the IONOS control panel.

Click the Account icon top-right, and select Contracts & Subscriptions.

Find the plan you'd like to cancel, click the gear icon to its right and choose Manage Contract.

Click 'Show Cancellation Options' and decide what you'd like to cancel: an entire contract, or specific add-ons only.

If you got a free domain with your plan and don't need it, select the 'Change domain expiration dates' option to disable automatic renewal.

reMarkable 2 review: still the best e-paper note-taking device money can buy
4:00 pm | August 27, 2020

Author: admin | Category: Computers Gadgets Tablets | Tags: | Comments: Off

reMarkable 2: Two-minute review

It was launched back in March 2020, but the reMarkable 2 is still one heck of an e-paper tablet. So I’m not surprised that the company hasn’t bothered to release a third iteration of this popular device, instead improving on the second-gen model via firmware updates.

When we updated our original review from 2020 in August 2022, the reMarkable 2 was already a vastly improved tablet over the original model and had features that didn’t exist when the second generation launched – like Google Drive, Dropbox and OneDrive integration, a document drawer, screen sharing, and notes for PDFs and ebooks. In December 2022, reMarkable rolled out version 3.0 of its firmware which, since then, has made the second-generation tablet even more, well, remarkable – prompting us to update the review again.

At its heart, it’s still the same device we fell in love with – designed for creating and syncing your ideas to the cloud so you can access them no matter where you are. All the features that got added to it over the years makes it hands-down the best note-taking tablet money can buy. Some of the newer features I’m particularly fond of include the handwriting-to-text conversion software, the checkboxes on todo lists that strikethrough tasks automatically, and support for the Type Folio that was announced in March 2023. This last accessory, in fact, makes the reMarkable 2 a fantastic E Ink laptop, complete with keyboard shortcuts, although the lack of a browser on the tablet limits its use.

The eraser on top of the Marker Plus stylus is also now more precise, and I think it’s the best e-paper tablet for signing documents, with absolutely no input lag. This is also what makes the reMarkable 2 a great digital sketch pad.

It’s also the most good-looking 10-inch tablet I’ve tested, arguably the thinnest too. The silver-grey trim on one bezel of the metal chassis and the barely-there power button make it look really sleek and premium. I also appreciate the little pads to protect the rear panel. And the matte finish on the rear camoflages most of the fingerprint smudges.

Without a bookstore or access to other applications, that’s essentially all the reMarkable 2 is good for and in its single-minded note-taking functionality, it excels. However, it takes time and patience to discover all the useful features. reMarkable has guides and tutorials online and on the device and they don’t even begin to scratch the surface. 

What really sets its back is the lack of frontlighting for the screen, which means you can’t use it to read before bed with the lights off – something I love to do and am disappointed that the reMarkable 2 won’t allow for it.

It’s also an expensive device, especially when you take into account the cost of the accessories, including the replacement pen nibs – putting it out of reach of many users.

reMarkable 2 with Marker Plus stylus

(Image credit: Sharmishta Sarkar / TechRadar)

reMarkable 2 review: price and availability

  • Announced March 2020
  • Launch price of $399 / £399 / AU$679 for the tablet + pen bundle
  • List price of $299 / AU$499 tablet only; sold as bundle for £379 in the UK

When the reMarkable 2 launched back in 2020, it was only available directly from the company as part of a bundle that also got you a Marker (as the stylus is called).

Now you can purchase the tablet on its own directly from the company in some markets – it’s $279 in the US and AU$469 in Australia. The pens will set you back $79 / AU$119 for the Marker and $129 / AU$199 for the Marker Plus, the latter featuring a matte finish and an eraser on the top. 

For the UK, however, reMarkable is still listing bundles only, with the Marker bundle setting you back £379 and the Marker Plus bundle costing £419. In the US and Australia, the bundles cost upwards of $378 / AU$618, depending on which pen you choose. Add in a folio and that price increases.

The good news is that the reMarkable works with other capacitive styli, so you can buy just the tablet and find a cheaper pen for it but the Markers are part of what makes the writing experience the best there is.

At this price, the tablet will be a hard sell for some – it’s more expensive than the entry-level iPad, for instance, which offers vastly more functionality through its color screen, App Store access and full multimedia support. Given the Amazon Kindle Scribe and the Kobo Elipsa 2E feature not just note-taking, but also access to bookstores on a front-lit screen, they offer more value than the reMarkable 2 at their respective prices of $339 / £329 / AU$549 and $399.99 / £349.99 / AU$629.95. They have more onboard storage too.

But for artists and note-takers, the ReMarkable 2 is a unique and focused experience worth considering – it doesn’t do as much as Apple’s tablet by a long shot, but what it does do it does incredibly well.

• Value score: 3 / 5

reMarkable 2 with keyboard folio and Marker Plus stylus

(Image credit: Sharmishta Sarkar / TechRadar)

reMarkable 2 review: specs

reMarkable 2 review: design and display

  • Sleek, minimalist design
  • Only 4.7mm thickness
  • Screen lacks lights

There was a time when the reMarkable tablet would have been a novelty, one of the first note-taking e-paper tablets to make it to market. Not so any longer with competition from Amazon, Kobo and Onyx. Despite that, the design of the reMarkable 2 is still arguably the best, making it one of the most beautiful e-paper tablets on the market with a minimalist aesthetic.

Measuring 187 x 246 x 4.7 mm, it’s still the world’s thinnest tablet and tips the scales at 403.5g, which is 30g lighter than the Amazon Kindle Scribe, although a smidge heavier than the Kobo Elipsa 2E that weighs in at 390g. You wouldn’t be able to tell the difference in real-world use though, with the white bezels and the dark silver edge of its aluminum frame giving it an airier feel over its clunkier-looking Kobo counterpart. The Kindle Scribe also sports a metal chassis and yet looks a touch bland compared to the reMarkable 2, which really does exude some serious oomph in the looks department.

The move to an aluminum frame from plastic in the original reMarkable is particularly handy, as it lets the reMarkable 2 make use of magnetic accessories, such as snap-on covers, as well as the more recent keyboard folio.

The rear panel features four tiny, slightly-raised rubber feet that stop the tablet slipping when writing on a table. A small power button sits on the top-left edge, while a USB-C port mars the bottom left corner.

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A book cover displayed on the reMarkable 2

(Image credit: Sharmishta Sarkar / TechRadar)
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Branding on the reMarkable 2 Marker Plus stylus

(Image credit: Sharmishta Sarkar / TechRadar)
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Connector pins on the reMarkable 2 to attach to the keyboard folio

(Image credit: Sharmishta Sarkar / TechRadar)
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reMarkable 2 rear panel with pads and branding

(Image credit: Sharmishta Sarkar / TechRadar)

The flush screen is a 10.3-inch modified monochrome E Ink Carta display that reMarkable calls Canvas. It’s been optimized specifically for stylus input. With a 226ppi resolution, it’s decently sharp, although it now looks a little lackluster alongside the Kindle Scribe’s 300ppi E Ink Carta 1200 display. Still, it’s easy on the eye, with just enough friction to make you believe you could be writing on paper. 

Where the reMarkable tablet disappoints is in the lack of lighting for the screen – there are no LEDs here, so you can’t use this in the dark like you can other e-ink tablets.

A stylus called a Marker is included if you buy a bundle and it magnetically secures to the right edge or on the top of the right bezel. It’s very finely textured to provide some grip and the more expensive Marker Plus includes an eraser on the top. Both pens are of a comfortable thickness and length, and superbly weighted for longer writing sessions. However, like a real pen, their tips don’t last forever. Though each pack comes with 10 replacements, you’ll need to change them out after three to seven weeks of use according to reMarkable’s website, or longer if you aren't constantly writing – but it's an additional cost that could soon add up.

• Design & display score: 4 / 5

Kindle Scribe and reMarkable 2 e ink writing tablets

Without a front-lit screen the reMarkable 2 (left) appears lackluster compared to the Amazon Kindle Scribe (right) (Image credit: Future / Philip Berne)

reMarkable 2 review: Software and user interface

  • Minimalist UX
  • Useful tools available to enhance note taking
  • Handy smartphone and desktop software

The reMarkable 2 has a near-singular purpose – to make writing on a digital device enjoyable and it pulls that off in great fashion. And its user interface reflects that singular purpose.

The Linux-based Codex operating system kicks off with a quick tutorial that has you set up a reMarkable account for cloud document syncing, and walks you through some quick tips on how to use the tablet, and then you hit the home screen.

It’s here where a grid of your documents is shown, which can be organized into folders, as well as letting you start off new Notebooks (which auto-populates with as many pages as you need) or a Quick Sheet which lets you quickly start jotting away in an instant.

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reMarkable 2

(Image credit: Sharmishta Sarkar / TechRadar)
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Notes sharing feature on the reMarkable 2

(Image credit: Sharmishta Sarkar / TechRadar)
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reMarkable 2 home screen setup

(Image credit: Sharmishta Sarkar / TechRadar)

All pages can start either blank, or have one of 35 preset page templates applied to them, ranging from storyboards to perspective grids, week planners and simple lined, margined pages. You’re then able to scribble all over them, add layers and more, with multiple pen types and sizes ranging from charcoal-effect pencils to paint-brush strokes at your disposal. As you’d find with a computer drawing application, there are buttons to zoom in to fine details, make area selections and undo or redo stay line strokes. It’s a great, well-featured drawing experience.

Perhaps even more impressive though is the experience when you start writing. The reMarkable 2 supports and recognizes 33 languages, and can not only identify block letters, but cursive input too. This means that it can read and interpret your scratchy handwriting, and convert it into a text document that you can email for editing in a word processor later. It’s not perfect, and the clearer your handwriting and grammatical marks the better. It was able to recognize my handwriting well, and it can handle some spidery scrawls, but I think Kobo’s handwriting recognition is superior.

Annoyingly, however, the handwriting-to-text function is only supported on the tablet, meaning you’ll have to decipher your scribbles manually if you’re viewing them on the mobile or desktop interface.

These apps speedily sync with your tablet, and are available on iOS, Android, Mac and PC. Though they don’t support any handwriting entry themselves, they otherwise more or less mirror the tablet interface, with the addition of being able to import and export files to and from the tablet wirelessly.

A person writing notes on the reMarkable 2

(Image credit: Sharmishta Sarkar / TechRadar)

Anything you make using the reMarkable 2 can be shared over a Wi-Fi connection, with the tablet supporting both 2.4GHz and 5GHz standards. While you can email documents directly from the tablet, you’re likely going to find the reMarkable mobile and desktop software more useful.

There are a heck of a lot of features that need a little delving into. For example, there's a Checklist feature that automatically strikesthrough an item you've finished when you select it, but figuring out how that works is not immediately clear. That said, reMarkable does have handy guides you can use to get started comfortably. 

However, the reMarkable 2, like its predecessor, remains at its weakest as an e-reader. Though there are no complaints about the legibility of the screen, its feature set (beyond the novelty of being able to mark up a book) is limited – there’s no ebook store, so titles will have to be sideloaded using the accompanying apps. There are no bookmarking features, no dictionary definitions, nor any quick ways to jump back and forth between particular pages aside from scrolling through them as a list. Yes, you can read a novel on the reMarkable 2, and its large screen size will make it comfortable to do so – just don’t expect the mod cons you’d get from, say, an Amazon Kindle or a Kobo.

With no book store to tap into, it’s the apps that let you send eBooks and documents to your device too. But you’re limited to just ePUB and PDF file types – anything else will need to be converted prior to sending, which is a pain considering the prevalence of .doc file types in the workplace.

The reMarkable does support a Chrome Extension however, which will let you easily convert and send articles to your device for reading – a welcome, efficient way of getting new content onto your device.

• Software & user interface score: 4 / 5

Checklists feature on the reMarkable 2

The Checklist feature on the reMarkable 2 is handy but it's not immediately clear how it works (Image credit: Sharmishta Sarkar / TechRadar)

reMarkable 2 review: Performance

  • Near-instant pen input
  • Works very well with keyboard folio
  • Good battery life

The reMarkable 2 excels in helping you go completely paperless when it comes to note-taking, whether it’s using the Marker pens or the optional keyboard folio. It’s a speedy interface overall, with even complex PDF files opening and ready to browse quickly.

The Markers are pressure sensitive and can work on a 50º angle for shading for those who want to get creative. There’s just enough friction here to make you believe you’re writing or sketching on paper.

Strokes are accurately inputted to the finest detail, and the lag between your movements being relayed on the screen is nearly nonexistent. That’s thanks to the combination of the 1.2GHz dual-core ARM processor under the hood and the 1GB of LPDDR3 SDRAM (or system memory if you’re wondering what all those letters mean) – these may not seem like much but, for just reading and note-taking, that’s plenty.

Even the Marker Plus’ eraser works a treat, although I found the Kindle Scribe’s Pen and the Kobo Stylus 2 to be a teensy bit more precise, but that’s me nitpicking.

Notebook settings on the reMarkable 2

(Image credit: Sharmishta Sarkar / TechRadar)

While writing on the reMarkable is a wonderful experience, reading isn’t as pleasurable. The roundabout way to sideload ebooks is the first thing that put me off using it as an ereader, but the lack of a light is my biggest complaint with this tablet. Moreover, there is no tap-to-turn page function on the reMarkable, you need to swipe, which isn’t the easiest of gestures if you’re trying to use the 10.3-inch tablet in one hand. There aren’t very many customization options for reading either, which really goes to show the reMarkable 2 was made specifically for writing.

8GB of internal storage is good for about 100,000 pages of notes, while USB-C charging of the 3,000mAh battery can give up to two weeks of usage between charges, based on two straight hours of use per day with Wi-Fi connection over a five-day working week.

• Performance score: 4 / 5

Should I buy the reMarkable 2?

Buy it if...

Don't buy it if...

Also consider

If our reMarkable 2 review hasn’t sold you on the product, then consider the two other options listed below. We’ve also included a table comparing their respectives specs and prices alongside the reMarkable 2.

How I tested the reMarkarble 2

  • Used over a period of about 6 weeks for approximately 30 minutes to an hour each day
  • Made all my work-related notes on its during the testing period
  • Also typed an article using the optional keyboard folio

reMarkable 2 with keyboard folio and Marker Plus stylus

(Image credit: Sharmishta Sarkar / TechRadar)

Given the reMarkable 2 is more a writing tablet than an ereader, I used it extensively to jot down notes while at work and at home. It was where I listed article ideas and also typed out an entire one that discussed the sustainability of ebooks vs paperbacks.

I did also sideload some ebooks in the EPUB format via the desktop interface, but the lack of a front-lit screen prevented me from using the reMarkable 2 as a reading tablet. I did spend about 45 minutes over my entire testing period using it as such though.

To test all the writing features, I created tags to search and filter my notes and articles and emailed documents to myself. I also used it to sign a work-related PDF document that I was able to email back to my work account.

Read more about how we test

  • First reviewed: August 2020
Domain.com review
8:08 am |

Author: admin | Category: Computers Gadgets | Comments: Off

Get 25% off EVERYTHING at Domain.com
Want to buy a domain name? Kickstart an online empire? Become a self-made millionaire with a web-based business? Then fill your cart at Domain.com and get 25% off your order using the discount code TECHRADAR. T&C apply, see further down the page.View Deal

Founded in 1998, Florida-based Domain.com is a web hosting provider and domain registrar who claims to power 1.2 million websites across the globe.

The company is now owned by Newfold Digital (previously known as Endurance International Group), the power behind other hosting names like Bluehost, HostGator and iPage.

What types of hosting does Domain.com offer?

Domain.com offers easy-to-use and low cost shared hosting plans in various forms: WordPress hosting, a website builder, an online store builder, and general-purpose do-everything shared hosting plans to cover everything else.

The company doesn't offer VPS hosting, dedicated server hosting, or any more advanced hosting plans.

Domain.com's plans should be powerful enough to handle most personal and business sites. But if your traffic is 100,000 visitors a month or more, rather than 10,000, or it's vital that your site has consistently high speeds, then its shared hosting plans are unlikely to be a good choice.

Could those plans work for you, though? Next up, we'll look at what each hosting range has to offer, what they do well, and where they fall short.

Domain.com shared hosting homepage screenshot

(Image credit: Domain.com)

Domain.com shared hosting

Domain.com's shared hosting range is refreshingly simple. There are only three plans, all with the same core features: free domain, free SSL, unlimited bandwidth, 1-click WordPress install and a free website builder. Upgrading only adds more resources, so there are no extra features to weigh up. Prices start at $3.75 a month on the annual plan, $4.99 on renewal, but there's no complex discounting scheme if you sign up for longer. Choose a one, two or three-year contract, it's still $3.75 a month.

We signed up, but quickly ran into problems. Domain.com doesn't use any of our favorite hosting management platforms (cPanel for its all-round tools, Softaculous to install and manage WordPress and other apps.) We found its replacements have fewer options and aren't always organized logically, often leaving us struggling to find key functions.

The 1-click installer is especially disappointing. It only covers WordPress, has the bare minimum of configuration options, includes few management tools, and has occasionally failed to install WordPress in the past (though not during this review.)

The plans have some feature gaps. In particular, there are no backups with the cheaper plans (adding them to our test account would cost an extra $2.13 a month.) Even when we got our site online, performance was below average (more on that, later.)

If you're running a basic site, with few visitors, and long-term prices are your top priority, then Domain.com might, just about, be acceptable. Although many providers have lower prices in the first term, they tend to jump on renewal, and Domain.com's 'from $4.99' renewal price is very low.

Unfortunately, opting for Domain.com means you'll pay in other ways, with below-par speeds, few features and poor management tools.

Hostinger's shared plans start a little cheaper at $2.99 a month on the annual, two or four your plans, although they're more expensive after that $6.99 to $8.99. Backups are still limited on the cheapest plans (weekly rather than daily), but performance is good, there's an excellent control panel and 1-click installer, useful WordPress extras, six data centers, and more.

Domain.com WordPress hosting homepage screenshot

The WordPress plans come with preinstalled plugins and themes (Image credit: Domain.com)

Domain.com WordPress hosting

WordPress is the world's favorite website creation platform, a hugely configurable tool which can handle everything from a single page personal site to a product-packed international web store.

Domain.com's shared hosting supports installing WordPress, perhaps enough if you just want to explore what it can do. But if you've something more serious in mind, Domain.com's WP range extends the range with a handful of extra features. 

The WP Starter plan is priced from $3.75 a month, just like the shared hosting, but adds unlimited storage, a customized control panel and pre-installed themes and plugins. They're small improvements, but not worth very much. You probably don't need a lot of storage (simple WordPress sites are often barely 1GB in size), and even newcomers can find plenty of quality themes and plugins for themselves.

The WP Essential plan (priced from $6.95 a month) includes more valuable extras, including Sitelock's malware scanning and removal service, and a direct phone line 'to a team of support agents who are specially-trained in all things WP Essential.'

Malware scanning is useful (hacked WordPress sites are a well-known web danger), and the plans are fair value, but they just don't have enough WordPress-related functionality to justify your time. Many hosting providers offer malware scanning as a paid extra, and you could easily buy a better shared hosting package elsewhere and add malware scanning yourself.

Domain.com does have one unusual extra in its WP Live support service. Priced from $29.95 to $149.95 a month, this goes beyond troubleshooting problems to giving advice on all kinds of design and optimization issues: social media strategies, creating an online store, making sure your site works well on mobile devices, more.

This could be useful in some situations. If you're new to WordPress, just starting your site, spending a one-off $149.95 for a month of design advice could save you a lot of time, and produce a better site. But in reality, you're likely to be better off choosing a more capable WordPress plan with additional WordPress-related features, faster hosting underneath, and the option to upgrade to VPS hosting if your site grows.

Alternatives include Hostinger's shared package, very cheap but with handy WordPress extras. Bluehost has a wide range of plans, with some strong business features at the top of the range. And if you're not quite sure what you need, IONOS' has WordPress options ranging from the impossibly cheap ($0.50 a month for year one, $8 on renewal) to supremely powerful ($120 a month for agencies and developers).

Domain.com website builder template example

The website builder includes a powerful web store (Image credit: Domain.com)

Does Domain.com have a website builder?

If you're looking for the easiest and quickest route to create a web presence, then a website builder is often the best choice. Most builders come with or can create starting sites in minutes, and adding elements to pages (text, images, videos forms) is as easy as dragging and dropping.

Domain.com has three website builder plans, ranging from $1.99 a month (billed monthly) for a limited product which supports a maximum of six pages, to a $12.99 a month ecommerce plan with product listings, inventory tracking, integrated shipping, order and tax management, and more.

The builder is certainly easy to use. No need to browse through templates to find something that appeals: just answer a few questions on yourself, your site and its goals, and it creates a starter site for you right away.

There's a reasonable set of features, too. All plans include free SSL, unlimited storage, social media sharing, blogs, contact forms, easy integration with an existing Facebook page, and more.

The plans are fair value, and the $1.99 plan in particular could be a smart low-cost solution for very simple sites.

As with Domain.com's WordPress plans, though, the lack of VPS or dedicated support is a problem for more demanding projects, such as a web store. If your site outgrows Domain.com's basic shared hosting infrastructure, you can't upgrade to anything better, and could be forced to move somewhere else.

Wix is a capable website builder with many more features and a far wider range of plans. Casual users can build and host a website for free, and an array of other plans covers everyone from personal users to (potentially) big international corporations.

Squarespace is a powerful alternative with great-looking templates and professional business and e-commerce plans. Or if it's value you're after, Bluehost has plans from $2.95 a month, while the Hostinger-powered Zyro has an 'e-commerce essentials' plan from an initial $3.99 a month.

Domain.com's uptime results

(Image credit: Domain.com)

How fast is Domain.com? 

Reliability is a must-have for any serious website. If your site is regularly broken, or down entirely, it hurts your reputation and may drive users away.

We check reliability by using Uptime.com to access a test site every five minutes over a two week period. We expect hosts to show 100% uptime with this short a test, but Domain.com managed a disappointing 99.11%. That puts it last in our last 15 tests (11 hosts hit 100% uptime, even the next-to-last host managed 99.63%.)

Uptime also records the response time of each test web server. Domain.com came bottom of the list here, too, with an average response time of 2.97 seconds (nine of our last 15 averaged less than 0.5 seconds.) 

Domain.com's GTMetrix results

(Image credit: GTMetrix)

We measure hosting performance by using a tool called GTmetrix to access a test WordPress site and calculate how long it takes to display the main content of a page (a figure technically called Largest Contentful Paint, or LCP). The lower the LCP, the faster and more responsive your site appears, and the happier your visitors will be.

Domain.com's LCP was relatively disappointing at 1.5 seconds, far slower than providers such as Bluehost (0.8 seconds), GoDaddy (0.7 seconds) and Hostinger (0.6 seconds.) Although 1.5 seconds is still acceptable, keep in mind that's based on launching our very simple template site. If yours has any significant content or features then it could be much slower.

Domain.com's k61 results

(Image credit: k61)

Finally, we use k6 https://k6.io to measure website performance when it has many visitors loading pages at the same time. Our Domain.com site handled an average 22.67 requests per second, but with a price. Response times became even longer and more unreliable as the site load increased, and the overall test response time was a lengthy 1.591 seconds. Most providers were at least a second faster, and Hostinger, HostGator, InMotion Hosting and Bluehost managed response times of around 100ms or less.

Domain.com's web control panel

Domain.com's web control panel is basic (Image credit: Domain.com)

How easy is Domain.com to use?

Buying a Domain.com plan is easier than usual. There are generally only a few plans, and the site only displays the bare minimum features for each. Pricing is clear and there are no misleading discounts to catch you out (a '$4.99' starter price which leaps to $14.99 after a year, say).

Managing your plan isn't as straightforward. Domain.com doesn't use standard tools such as cPanel or Softaculous, opting for its own custom control panels, instead. We found them relatively basic, with fewer features. These don't seem as intuitive or well organized as more standard control panels, either, and we spent longer than expected trying to carry out some tasks.

Use the control panels for a while and these initial impressions won't matter as much, because you'll learn where everything is. But if you're looking for the most straightforward shared hosting, we'd generally recommend choosing a host which offers quality tools such as cPanel or Softaculous.

Alternatively, there are some hosts who do produce very capable control panels of their own. Hostinger's hPanel is a great example, and it's available in the company's budget shared hosting range (from $1.99 a month).

Domain.com's support page

(Image credit: Domain.com)

What is Domain.com's support like?

Domain.com offers support 24/7 via telephone, live chat and a web knowledgebase. There's no ticket support, though. That can become a problem if you've a long-term issue, as you'll have to explain the situation from the beginning whenever you talk to an agent.

The web knowledgebase has plenty of useful content, and its search engine does a good job of displaying the most relevant articles at the top. We noticed that some content appeared to be cut-and-pasted from iPage, (both iPage and Domain.com are owned by Newfold Digital), and no-one had remembered to replace the 'iPage.com' references with 'Domain.com.' That looks a little clumsy, but as iPage and Domain.com use the same technology, the articles should hopefully apply to both hosts. 

We opened several test live chat sessions, and in every case an agent appeared to respond in under a minute. The initial responses are largely automated, and appeared more or less identically for every test question, but typically we still had an initial reply to our issue within three to four minutes.

The quality of responses varied depending on the issue, with agents performing noticeably less well on more complex or unusual problems (how to install WordPress on a subdomain, and the SSL consequences of that.) But when it came to common issues which you're far more likely to have, the agents quickly identified each problem and pointed us to the best solution.

Domain.com's very few plans

Domain.com has very few plans (Image credit: Domain.com)

Final verdict

Domain.com's low long-term prices are appealing, and if cost is your top priority, your site is basic and you're not that bothered about power or performance, it might - just about - do the job. But if you're managing any more serious project, you'll find faster, more reliable and powerful hosting available elsewhere for only a little extra cash.


Domain.com FAQs

What payment types does Domain.com support?

Domain.com accepts payment via card and PayPal. 

Does Domain.com offer refunds?

Domain.com has a 30-day money-back guarantee covering hosting, but not domain registration, setup fees, or the cost of any additional services.

The small print warns that all first-time hosting accounts are eligible. If you've been a customer before, and signed up again, you won't be able to claim a refund.

Domain.com offers uptime guarantee

(Image credit: Domain.com)

Does Domain.com have an uptime guarantee?

The Domain.com states in several places that some hosting plans have a 99.99% uptime guarantee, which translates to a downtime of just four minutes and 23 seconds a month. Sounds like good news, especially as most hosting packages only offer 99.9% uptime, or 43 minutes and 50 seconds a month.

Unfortunately, we can't find anything on the Domain.com website which explained anything about the policy: what counted as downtime, what didn't, when you might start being compensated for problems, and you might get. We asked support but our agent couldn't tell us, either.

Maybe the company has the tech to hit that target, maybe it doesn't, but with no clear definition of what 'downtime' means, it's not a meaningful guarantee. We'd recommend you ignore it until Domain.com adds some relevant details to its terms and conditions.

Where are Domain.com's data centers?

The Domain.com website doesn't have any significant information on the company's data centers, and we weren't offered a choice of locations when we signed up for our regular hosting account.

We put our server IP address into IPLocation.net  https://www.iplocation.net/ip-lookup  to find out where the server is located. This doesn't always return an accurate answer, but of the eight databases IP Location checked, six suggested our IP was in Florida, one said Massachusetts, and one couldn't give us a location.

What is my Domain.com IP address?

Log into the Domain.com customer account panel.

Click the Hosting tab at the top of the screen.

The server IP address is displayed in the Server Information box on the right-hand side of the control panel.

What are Domain.com's nameservers?

Log into your Domain.com customer account panel.

Click 'DNS & Nameservers' in the left sidebar.

Domain.com's nameservers are displayed beneath the 'Add Nameserver' button. (If you don't see them, they're probably ns1.domain.com and ns2.domain.com: try those, first.)

Domain.com's change auto-renewal status to cancel a product

Domain.com's change auto-renewal status to cancel a product (Image credit: Domain.com)

How do I cancel a Domain.com product?

Log into your Domain.com web account.

Click the Hosting Tools icon at the top of the page (nine small dots arranged in a square.)

Click the 'Logged in as ' box at the top of the screen, and choose Hosting Renewal.

Choose whether you'd like your hosting canceled immediately, or when your subscription expires. Read the details carefully to avoid any mistakes, and click Change Status.

The TECHRADAR coupon is good for 25% off the cart total with no minimum purchase. All renewals after the initial discounted period will be charged at the then current standard list price for the selected period. Coupon is not valid with sunrise registrations, landrush registrations, EAP registrations, pre-registrations, premium registrations, renewals, transfers, custom website design, other coupons, or special pricing.

Stock Trainer review
12:22 pm | August 12, 2020

Author: admin | Category: Computers Gadgets Pro Software & Services | Comments: Off

In our search for the best stock trading platforms, we came across Stock Trainer, a free virtual stock trading app. In short, it can be used to practice trading and fine-tune your skill without risking real money. In the rest of our Stock Trainer review, we explore the finer details of this app, including its main features and useability.

Stock Trainer review

Stock Trainer is a free virtual stock trading app (Image credit: Stock Trainer)

Stock Trainer: What does it offer?

Stock Trainer is an Android app offering virtual stock trading based on the real market. It supports 20 different stock exchanges across 13 countries, including the US and the UK. And, it can be used by people from 38 different countries. 

In general, Stock Trainer is aimed at beginners who want to learn how to trade profitably. It can also be used in conjunction with other research and charting tools to practice new strategies before implementing them on the real-money market. Unlike many practice trading apps, Stock Trader is extremely feature rich and includes many of the same tools as true trading platforms.

Stock Trainer review

You can learn how to trade on the stock market with Stock Trainer (Image credit: Google Play)

Stock Trainer: Opening an account

Stock Trainer is very easy to get started with because it’s a virtual trading platform that doesn’t require real-money deposits. Opening an account involves downloading the app, filling in a few personal details, and signing in. You can also create an account by linking one of your social media profiles. 

Once you’ve created a new Stock Trainer account, you will be credited with $20,000 of virtual money to trade with. Extra in-app money can be claimed by watching short advertising videos. 

Next, it’s time to get set up for trading. There are numerous research tools that you can use to find attractive stocks to trade. You can also search for different stocks directly, and any interesting options can be added to a watchlist.

Stock Trainer review

Opening a Stock Trainer account is very straightforward (Image credit: Stock Trader)

Stock Trainer: Account Types

Stock Trainer is a free virtual trading app, but there are two types of accounts available: Standard and Premium. Standard is completely free to sign up for and includes everything except automatic account backups and candlestick charts. Purchasing a premium account for $5 will unlock these and remove all ads.

Stock Trainer review

There are two Stock Trainer account options (Image credit: Google Play)

Stock Trainer: Features

Stock Trainer is a feature-rich app that comes with a wide range of professional trading tools. It is, without a doubt, one of the best practice trading apps we’ve used, providing live data for 20 different stock markets across the world. This information can be used to make fast, realistic virtual trades. 

On top of this, Stock Trainer comes with great charts that provide an overview of a stock’s historical performance. Different time-scales can be specified, and all charts can be zoomed and scrolled. More advanced candlestick charts are also available with a premium account. 

Users will also be able to access a detailed stock news feed directly from the app. This curates relevant news from across the internet, although some articles are often irrelevant to the stock in question. A detailed business magazine is also available that includes great information about trading in general. 

We were also very impressed with the user interface. Different tabs enable you to view your portfolio and watchlist, find attractive stocks to invest in, and analyze your trade history, among other things. 

Making a trade is as simple as entering a price and a quantity. Numerous indicators are available to help you make informed decisions, including financial information, current bids, volume, and historical performance. A selection of recommended stocks to trade is also available for some markets, and we found that a great place to get started.

Stock Trainer review

Stock Trainer provides detailed historical price data (Image credit: Stock Trainer)

Stock Trainer: Support

Unfortunately, Stock Trainer provides very few support options for new users. A brief video guide is available on YouTube, which we’d recommend watching before you start trading. There is an empty help tab in the app, which simply states that more resources are coming soon.

Stock Trainer review

A video guide is available to help you familiarize yourself with the app (Image credit: Youtube)

Stock Trainer: Final verdict

Overall, Stock Trainer is a great app if you’re looking for a way to learn how to trade the stock market or practice new strategies. It’s certainly one of the best virtual trading platforms we’ve used, and its tools and features are comparable to those of many real-money trading apps. 

Stock Trainer is also completely free, with a premium add-on that makes it even more attractive. Despite only being available on Android, it’s one of the highest-rated trading apps across all platforms and has over a million downloads. 

Ultimately, Stock Trainer is a powerful app that could make a great addition to your stock trading toolkit. Its user interface is quite intuitive, and the sheer amount of information available is impressive. We’d highly recommend downloading Stock Trainer to see if it’s suited to your needs.

Stock Trainer: The competition

Stock Trainer is one of the best virtual trading apps we’ve used, but it’s certainly not the only one available. Many real-money trading platforms also offer virtual accounts so you can practice your strategies and keep learning. 

For example, MetaTrader 5 is a versatile platform that supports stock, forex, and futures trading. It’s available on desktop and mobile devices and supports both virtual and real-money trading. However, it is a little complex, and true beginners might struggle with its user interface.

MetaTrader 4 forex trading app review
12:16 pm |

Author: admin | Category: Computers Gadgets Pro Software & Services | Comments: Off

Searching high and low for the best forex trading app? MetaTrader 4 (MT4) could be the solution you’ve been waiting for. With thousands of add-on market indicators and trading robots to install, this platform is widely used by professional and amateur forex traders alike.

In this MetaTrader 4 review, we’ll explain why MT4 is a great way to trade on forex, futures, CFD, and plenty of other markets. While the MetaTrader 4 software can be used in demo mode for free, live accounts require you to go through a licensed third-party broker.

MetaTrader 4 Review

MetaTrader 4 was created by MetaQuotes, which is also the company behind MetaTrader 5 (Image credit: MetaQuotes)

MetaTrader 4: What does it offer?

First launched in 2005, MetaTrader 4 is one of the most popular trading apps around. Over the years, its following has grown thanks to superb levels of customization and automation. Newbie traders are sure to appreciate MT4’s fully-functional demo account, which enables you to develop your trading skill without any financial risk. Other beginner-friendly elements of this trading platform include a copy trading system and automated Expert Advisor apps.

Meanwhile, experienced traders will appreciate MT4’s capability for advanced analytics and charting. It’s even possible to design your own trading indicators using the proprietary MQL4 programming language.

MetaTrader 4 Review

MT4 offers a large trading robot and technical indicator market (Image credit: MetaQuotes)

MetaTrader 4: Opening an account

Most users chose to get started with MetaTrader 4 by creating a demo account. This is a good option because it enables you to test trading strategies using virtual funds and evaluate the MetaTrader ecosystem. To open a demo account, all you need to do is head over to the MetaTrader 4 website and download the software to your macOS, PC, Linux, iOS, or Android device. After installation, you’ll be automatically set up with a demo account.

MetaTrader 4 Review

Opening an MT4 demo account is as simple as downloading and installing the software (Image credit: MetaQuotes)

Starting a live MT4 account is a more involved process. Unlike demo accounts, real MetaTrader accounts can only be created by a third-party brokerage business. 

The process for opening a real currency account varies depending on the firm you choose to partner with. Most companies require you to submit tax and identification information as part of the registration process. Once a brokerage has accepted your application, they’ll provide you with an account ID number, server, and a password which you can use to log in to MetaTrader.

MetaTrader 4: Account types

Demo accounts are the only kind of MetaTrader 4 account that you can open without signing up for a third-party brokerage firm. Because of this, the trading limits, accessible markets, and fees of your MetaTrader 4 account will all be dependent on the broker you decide to work with.

MetaTrader 4 Review

MetaTrader 4 account characteristics are set by individual brokers (Image credit: MetaQuote)

To give you an idea of how a live MT4 account might look, let’s consider a couple of examples. OctaFX is one of the best-established MT4-compatible partners. Its MT4 Micro account offers floating trades from 0.4 pips, no commission, and access to 28 currency pairs. Meanwhile, IG Group, the UK’s largest forex broker, has a MetaTrader 4 live account with minimum spreads of 0.6 plus support for 27 commodity markets.

MetaTrader 4: Features

Like many of the best forex trading apps, MetaTrader 4 allows you to perform trades through instant execution, by request, or according to market triggers. Beyond this, you’ll find plenty of niche and interesting features that help MT4 to stand out from the crowd.

Expert Advisors are one example of that. These are proprietary programs created in the MQL4 language that can help you to automate trading. Because Expert Advisors are designed by third parties, their quality and cost vary, but used correctly they can have a massive impact on your portfolio.

Another important aspect of the MT4 platform is its insane level of customizability. Thanks to an unlimited number of charts, you can create an interface that fits with your precise trading preferences. It’s even possible to set up custom audio alert trading signals to inform you when it's time to copy a deal.

MetaTrader 4 Review

MT4 enables you to view market fluctuations in a way that best fits with your personal trading style (Image credit: MetaQuotes)

Experienced traders are drawn to the MT4 platform by its advanced analytics toolset. When you initially install the program, you’ll be able to forecast price dynamics with 30 built-in indicators. After you’re set up, you can install almost 3,000 additional free and paid indicators.

MetaTrader 4: Support

MetaTrader 4 can be used in more than 30 unique languages, and technical support is similarly multilingual. On the MetaTrader website, you’ll find in-depth advice articles to help you address common issues and get familiar with the program. There’s even a totally separate support site for the MQL4 language. Unfortunately, direct phone or live chat assistance isn’t an option, but this will normally be provided by your broker.

MetaTrader 4 Review

It’s worth taking your time to get familiar with the MT4 support site before trading (Image credit: MetaQuotes)

MetaTrader 4: Final verdict

If you’re after a forex trading app to help you to grow as a trader, look no further than MT4. This platform doesn’t just have the best analytical tools on the market, it also works with thousands of brokers and offers great tools for first-time traders, such as demo accounts and copy trading. The only downside of the program worth mentioning is that its execution speed isn’t as fast we’d like, making MT4 a poor choice for high-frequency traders.

MetaTrader 4: The competition

The closest competitor to MetaTrader 4 is the latest trading system released by MetaQuotes, MetaTrader 5. MT4 is tailored to forex traders while MetaTrader 5 was created with CFD, futures, and stock traders in mind. There are numerous other intricate differences between these platforms but, in general, if you aren’t focused on forex trading, MT5 will be a better option. 

Another good alternative to MetaTrader 4 is ZuluTrade. If you want an easy-to-use platform that makes it simple to find, copy, and place trades made by the world’s leading finance traders, ZuluTrade is well worth a look.

GeoSurf Review: Pros & Cons, Features, Ratings, Pricing and more
1:29 pm | August 7, 2020

Author: admin | Category: Computers Gadgets | Comments: Off

GeoSurf is one of the oldest proxy providers, having been around since 2009. Known best for its residential proxy network, it claims to have a pool of 3.7 million residential IPs that cover over 1,700 cities worldwide. 

This Tel Aviv-based company is also very vocal about its privacy. In fact,that it signs legally binding agreements with its customers, a guarantee that it is not data sharing under any circumstance.

GeoSurf: Plans and pricing

GeorSurf’s plans are all pre-paid, and have an auto recurring subscription fee that is charged automatically at the start of a new billing cycle. This can be a convenience so that a subscription does not lapse, or an expensive stumbling block for those that forget to cancel these types of recurring costs. 

As is fairly common with all the proxy providers, GeoSurf’s plans require a minimum monthly commitment. With a higher data allotment for the month, it becomes a better deal when you work it out by the GB.

For instance, their cheapest residential proxy plan, Geosurf Residential Explorer, starts from $300/month and bundles 25GB of usage ($12/GB), and additional bandwidth will cost the same $12/GB. If you have a higher usage, you can choose a higher tiered plan- there are five plans in total. For example, the Geosurf Residential Professional plan costs $800/month but offers 100GB of bandwidth, which comes to $8/GB, with additional bandwidth available at the same rate. 

GeoSurf 1

(Image credit: GeoSurf )

GeoSurf: Features

GeoSurf offers both types of IPs -- static IPs and residential IPs. It also has available mobile IPs as well.

Static IPs are the data center IPs that are available While they can be identified and blocked more easily, but do have their advantages, such as being more stable as they are provided by an ISP.

GeoSurf’s main offering is the residential IP network that has over 3.7 million high quality residential IPs across 192 countries, and every city in the world. They are more anonymous, and there is no indication of proxy use.

The company claims its IPs are clean, and haven’t been blocked or blacklisted. Furthermore, it owns all of the servers on their network and hosts them in Tier 1 backbone data centers around the world. 

GeoSurf claims that thanks to these steps, their IT infrastructure has a high level of reliability, availability, and security. In fact, GeoSurf claims that its residential IPs work with particularly tough targets like Instagram as well as on targets that use age-verification. In fact, they claim that they are “Never blocked,” and “100%” reliable, which are seriously lofty claims that competitors don’t make.

GeoSurf 2

(Image credit: GeoSurf )

The good thing about GeoSurf’s offering is that it offers unlimited IPs. This means there aren’t any limitations on the number of connections, threads, and locations you can target, simultaneously. Rather than restricting the IPs, GeoSurf meters plans by bandwidth.

The service enables you to target based on geography, such as the country, state, and even down to the city. While it supports the common HTTP and HTTPS protocols, it doesn’t support SOCKS5. 

GeoSurf offers two types of IP rotation policies. Sticky IPs help maintain persistent connections for a predefined time. The service offers sticky IPs that you can choose to keep for 0, 1 or 10 minutes. 

On the other hand, the Per Session rotation policy gives you the ability to maintain session persistence. You can use this rotation policy to effectively bind your connection to a specific IP and keep it- without any time limit. In other words, this lets you keep the same IP as long as you keep sending requests before the expiration of the time-to-live (TTL).

GeoSurf offers a number of useful tools, including the browser extension for Firefox, Chrome. You can use the extension to switch IPs and also delete all cookies and cache from the browser with a single click. There is also a dedicated browser toolbar available, and a desktop VPN for times that is more convenient than a proxy.

GeoSurf 3

(Image credit: GeoSurf )

GeoSurf: Interface and use

Getting started with, and using the service is quite simple.

The onboarding process requires going through a sales executive who’ll help you choose a plan for your requirements. While this might be useful for some, others might find it an unnecessary step.

Once the sales executive has registered you with the service, you can log into its dashboard, which gives simple usage statistics on the landing page.

To use the service, the next step is to create a gateway address. The dashboard has a streamlined three-step setup wizard for generating this.

First, select the desired targeting level or service type as GeoSurf calls it. You can choose between Country, State and City for granular control of the geographic location. 

Next choose your rotation time, which can be either Per Session or Sticky. Finally, use the pull-down menus to specify the location based on the targeting option you selected in the first step.

When you are done, the wizard will then display the IP address of the gateway, and also a port number or a range of ports, depending on your prior selections in the wizard.

GeoSurf 4

(Image credit: GeoSurf )

As long as you keep sending a request you should stay on the same sticky IP. In case you wish to change the IP, all you need to do is to change the port number according to the port range. Each port will give you a new IP.

For session IPs, the port is always 8000 as they connect through a username and password that’s listed below the gateway address.

GeoSurf offers several mechanisms for using the generated gateway. You can send your requests through GeoSurf’s API- or integrate it with third-party software and bots.

The service has an integration guide, which has instructions to help you add the gateway in popular apps and tools. The integration guide will also help you get started with example code in various languages including PHP, Python, Ruby, Java, Node.js, and more. You can also use the gateway through the browser add-on mentioned earlier.

GeoSurf: Support

GeoSurf offers support that is available 24/7. There are some self help options, such as whitepapers, but we did not find a comprehensive knowledge base, webinars, nor a community forum.

There are some direct options, but we are lacking a phone number other than in Tel Aviv, an email, a fax, or a chat box. Rather, we find a WhatsApp, Telegram, and a contact portal, the last option we confirmed can be used for sales or product support.

While the overall support looks to be adequate, we think some of these options, such as WhatsApp are not the typical communication options that we would be expecting for this type of service.

GeoSurf: Final verdict

GeoSurf certainly has its positives. Although it can’t match the sheer number of IPs offered by some of its peers like Luminati, the 3.7+ million it offers are high-quality residential IPs that cover the globe.

Furthermore, the service limits accounts by bandwidth, rather than by the number of IPs, which makes it a fairly attractive option. 

That said, the service isn’t particularly cost competitive as compared to its peers in the proxy space. Also, while GeoSurf has been in the game for longer than many of the other proxy providers, it doesn’t offer the same level of service. For instance, you can’t get mobile IPs with GeoSurf, neither does it offer any custom crawlers of its own, nor does it support SOCKS5. 

According to GeoSurf, its proxies are great for ad verification, sales intelligence, and purchasing sneakers, and we’d agree. GeoSurf doesn’t offer a trial as much, but you can ask for one during the onboarding process to explore the service and see if it works for you.