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PC Pro

PC Pro June 2021

PC Pro is the UK’s number one IT monthly magazine and offers readers a healthy variety of tech news updates, tests, reviews, best buys and even bonus software in every issue. The editorial team are experts in their field and they’re dedicated to creating the most authoritative reviews and keeping you up to speed on the latest technology developments.

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United Kingdom
Dennis Publishing UK
$8.10(Incl. tax)
$64.75(Incl. tax)
12 Issues

in this issue

8 min
“the benefit of apprentices is their enthusiasm and the new ideas they bring into your business”

Athinaengland It all started when I was three years old, and my grandad bought me my first computer. Those were the days before we had internet and the floppy disk was the only way of loading my favourite programs. I was fascinated by anything computer-related and could often be found dismantling and rebuilding them on his dining room table. Miraculously, we always managed to find the right parts to put back together again. In secondary school I studied ICT, but was told I wasn’t allowed to do computing at A Level because it wasn’t a subject for girls. This made me move away from my love of computers towards the sciences, as I felt it was more of a girly subject. I stopped fixing computers myself and relied on others to do…

14 min
“wi-fi congestion in suburban areas has never been so bad, and sorting out the mess needs tools”

@jonhoneyball The news that Fry’s Electronics has closed all of its stores across the US has left me rather upset. Yes, it was a bricks-and-mortar chain that sold computers and related peripherals. So does Currys PC World. But the difference couldn’t have been starker, at least in the distant past. When I first visited San Francisco in 1991, I made visiting the Silicon Valley branches a “must do”. I was absolutely stunned by what I found. This place didn’t just stock computers – it had CPUs. All of them. In all speeds. Motherboards by the stack. RAM? Yes, all of that, in every flavour. There was enough stuff here for you to build any computer you might wish for. Then there were the shelves of tools and test equipment. And cables and…

4 min
amazon echo show (3rdgen)

SCORE PRICE £200 (£240 inc VAT) from pcpro.link/320echo It’s no coincidence that Honor’s laptops take such a dominant position in the “Everyday laptops” category of our A-List (see p14). No other company delivers such consistently excellent value, and its three key ingredients are as simple as they are successful: generous specifications, metal chassis, low price. The principal use case is video calls. Amazon launched group calling for Echo devices at the end of 2020, in the hope that it would supplant Zoom and Skype for remote family get-togethers. Indeed, with support for Skype in place and Zoom coming soon, the Show 10 could be viewed as the ultimate standalone webcam. Before you can get started, though, there’s setup to plough through. This sees you tweaking the default resting position of the display and setting…

22 min
the a-list

PREMIUM LAPTOPS Apple MacBook Air Affordable Apple M1 ultraportable from £999 from apple.com/uk Apple's ARM-based M1 chip is blasting away its AM D and Intel x86 opposition with truly extraordinary speeds. Even the low-end model with 8GB of RAM is ludicrously fast. Apple makes no changes to the Air's design, but it still looks fabulous and now supports both USB 4and Wi-Fi 6. Add battery life into the teens and its biggest threat comes from the updated M1 MacBook Pro 13in. REVIEW Issue316, p40 ALTERNATIVES NEW ENTRY Dell XPS 17 (2020) An excellent alternative to the 16in MacBook Pro thanks to a 17in IPS screen, bags of power, all-round quality and a great range of specs. From £1,799 from dell.co.uk REVIEW Issue 315, p48 Apple MacBook Pro 13in (M1) Apple replaces Intel’s Core processors with its own M1 chip and the…

4 min
okay google, please let me into my account

Last month, I confessed to feeling less hostile toward the giant digital corporations than is fashionable nowadays, and this month I’m heading further still into the wilderness by admitting that I’m not particularly paranoid about online security, either. That’s not to say I deny the importance of my dear colleague Davey Winder’s advice; I do follow it and, as a result, have only experienced two successful virus attacks in 40 years. In the mid-1980s I used to visit CeBIT with Byte magazine every year, where on one drunken evening with members of the Chaos Computer Club I accepted a floppy disk of source code that blew up the laptop I was using. Luckily, it wasn’t mine but borrowed from a friendly London dealer. Oops. I caught the second one around 1998 after…

4 min
six months on: the state of m1 software

It’s now been six months since Apple shook up the personal computing world with its own processors. The launch of the M1-powered MacBook Air, MacBook Pro and Mac mini was a dramatic moment for the company because it marked the transition away from Intel’s chip architecture and on to silicon of Apple’s own design, based on the ARM chipset. In other words: all existing software written for the Mac will no longer run natively on any new Mac that Apple releases. This means that if developers want their software to work on the new machines, they will ultimately have to rebuild them for the new architecture. So, half a year on, we think it’s time to check in and see how the transition is going. The PowerPC principle When Apple made a similar transition…