Each week, I receive tons of questions from my listeners about tech concerns, new products and all things digital.
Sometimes, choosing the most interesting questions to highlight is the best part of my job.
This week, I received questions about Nextdoor privacy, finding snoops, fixing bad Wi-Fi and more.
Do you have a question you'd like to ask me?
Nextdoor App Isn’t So Neighborly
Q: My neighbors are complaining about me on Nextdoor.com. Is there anything I can do about it? Is Nextdoor safe?
A: Ah, Nextdoor. It seemed like a fabulous idea when it was released in 2011: Develop an invitation-only, closed social media network where only you and your verified neighbors share updates, sell things, and help each other out. It’s like the modern-day grocery store bulletin board where we’d find repair shops, lost dogs, and garage sales. It sounds so idyllic, doesn’t it?
Nextdoor has its share of trolls and bullies. The most natural solution: Stop using it. I understand that's easier said than done. If you don’t want to do that, click or tap here to get the insider steps to protect your privacy on Nextdoor.
Is Someone Snooping on Your PC or Mac?
Q: I think my crazy ex put a keylogger on my computer. How can I check it?
A: I’m sorry you have a crazy ex. That stinks. Your question doesn’t specify what type of computer you have, so I’ll address how to tell if someone is snooping on your PC or Mac. Both operating systems allow you to check recently accessed files and folders.
On PC's it's in a folder called "Quick Access"; on a Mac, it's under your Apple menu in a folder called "Recent Items." You can also check your browser's history. Chrome, Firefox and Microsoft Edge all have folders called "History," but if your snooper has half a brain, they will delete their activity before signing off.
If you’re a PC user, head over to my website for a pro tip. I’ll walk you through, step by step, how to use Windows Event Viewer to see Windows services, logins, errors, and warnings. Click or tap here for step-by-step instructions on Windows Event Viewer.
Bad Wi-Fi? Check Your Router
Q: My Wi-Fi stinks! Is it my router?
A: Slow Wi-Fi could be your router. It's an excellent place to start. Getting a better signal from your router may be as simple as moving it to a better location. Choose a location that's central to your home or office, and make sure no large appliances or furniture are blocking the signals.
It's also best to place the router high on a bookshelf or mounted on a wall, as inconspicuously as possible, of course. In addition to router placement, there are several features you should use, which are too technical to get into in this post. Tap or click here for more advanced router settings that you can set yourself.
5G Hype and Reality
Q: I keep hearing about how great 5G is going to be for us. Where can you get it? My phone says 4G! I feel left out.
A: The 5G upgrade will be great, once it’s here. It’s expected to improve virtual reality technology and support more connected devices. Relax. You haven’t been left behind. My phone still says 4G, too. Most everyone's says that.
The four major cellular carriers – AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, and Verizon – have announced plans to roll out 5G sometime in 2019, starting in major cities and rolling out nationwide through 2020. For example, Verizon has rolled it out only in Chicago and Minneapolis with plans for 30 more cities by the end of the year.
Here's the thing: 5G probably won't work with your current phone. Once 5G hits your hometown, you'll likely have to spring for a new device. Click or tap here to find out if there is a 5G network near you.
Real Cost of Streaming Services
Q: I want to save money by signing up for a streaming service. They are all pricey, or am I looking at the wrong options?
A: Streaming services remind me of the candy jar that sits in my conference room. Some have nuts, some have nougat, some have caramel, and some are sweeter than others. If I eat just one piece of candy, I’m missing out on all those other flavors. If I eat a fistful, I’m overwhelmed and left with a sick feeling in my stomach.
You feel the same way when you see your credit card bills after subscribing to Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, and the slew of other streaming services that offer unique menus of content. Streaming services can save you money when you cut the cord, and most streaming providers offer plans that fit different budgets. Click or tap here to see subscription plans for the major streaming providers.
What digital lifestyle questions do you have? Call her national radio show and tap or click here to find it on your local radio station. You can listen to or watch the Kim Komando Show on your phone, tablet, television or computer. Or tap or click here for Kim's free podcasts.