Tech & Gaming
PC Pro

PC Pro April 2017

The UK’s biggest selling PC monthly magazine, and your source of professional IT news, reviews and tests. Combining in–depth industry comment and analysis with rigorous product testing.

United Kingdom
Dennis Publishing UK
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£4(Incl. tax)
£31.99(Incl. tax)
12 Issues

in this issue

3 min.
it’s time to place technology at the heart of the nhs

IMAGINE FOR A MOMENT that we were founding the NHS from scratch today. Ignoring the fact it would struggle to get out of committee stage, there would be one obvious difference from the current setup. Just as we can’t imagine hospitals without reliable sources of electricity and running water, we would make absolutely sure that the internet would work reliably throughout. I’m not arguing that broadband is as vital to hospitals as electricity and water, but technology can and will save more lives as this century marches on. You only need to listen to the experts – we share the views of ten health professionals from p30 – to understand the difference it can make. A joined-up system that supports our talented and dedicated nurses, surgeons, GPs and consultants could be…

1 min.

Nicole Kobie The alternatives to silicon are lining up; Nicole digs behind the claims to see whether there’s any real prospect of it being replaced. See p124 Davey Winder How does our security expert Davey Winder keep his Android phone safe from hackers? Discover a little tool called LapDog on p118 Nik Rawlinson All of us have suffered the pain of lost important files. On p48, Nik explains what you can do about it – both before and after the disaster strikes John Chen We interview BlackBerry CEO John Chen to find out why he sees a stronger future now the company has stopped making phones. See p10…

1 min.
five stories not to miss

1 Chemists claim victory over burning batteries Stanford University chemists claim to have solved the problem of incendiary lithium-ion batteries that have afflicted devices such as the Samsung GalaxyNote7. Thetechnology includes a flame-retardant reservoir inside a meltable layer in the battery’s casing. When a battery reaches a critical temperature, the retardant is released. 2 Microsoft adds ebooks to Windows arsenal Microsoft is set to start offering ebooks through the Windows Store. Microsoft revealed it would add EPUB-format books to Windows 10 with the Creators Update. Books will be a hub entry in Microsoft Edge, and will include books bought from the company, unprotected EPUB titles and PDFs. 3 Oracle facing discrimination charges Oracle risks losing US government contracts after the Department of Labor filed a lawsuit against the firm, claiming it breached discrimination laws. It…

3 min.
blackberry reveals comeback plan

BLACKBERRY IS PINNING its hopes of an unheralded comeback on licensed handsets and a fledgling security consultancy, the company has told PC Pro. The one-time market leader in business handsets lost its way when touchscreens transformed the smartphone market, but it claims a new business model will revitalise the range of BlackBerry phones, while the company looks to build a new business based on its reputation for corporate security. The company says it still sees growth potential for BlackBerry-branded phones, although it won’t be building them itself. “We continue to have a handset business, but my handset business is changing a little bit now,” BlackBerry CEO John Chen told PC Pro. “Now BlackBerry will be licensing to other people, and we still have a strong hand in the portfolio, and provide all…

2 min.
security and the internet of things

The Internet of Things (IoT) has seen devices as diverse as baby monitors, industrial infrastructure sensors and front-door locks that can be controlled remotely. While we marvel at this near-universal connectivity, there are real concerns from security researchers and academics that the system lacks sufficient controls, with a variety of platforms and protocols making it virtually impossible to standardise security. Here are several examples of how IoT devices are being exploited. DVRS Many connected devices are set up with default passwords that aren’t easily changed, making them straightforward to attack. One such weakness in DVR and IP camera components made by XiongMai Technologies allowed hackers to create a botnet of 100,000 devices, taking out a range of websites, including Amazon and Spotify. WEBCAMS Smart cameras designed for security are vulnerable to attack themselves. The Exploitee.rs group…

2 min.
new tool opens broadband escape hatch

BROADBAND SUBSCRIBERS WHO suffer with worse-than-expected connection speeds have a new weapon when trying to escape from their contract. The Downstream Handback Threshold – a new measure on BT Wholesale’s line checker (pcpro. link/270check) – identifies whether a customer’s connection is in the worst 10% for performance, the threshold by which customers must be released from their contract without charge. It’s a response to Ofcom regulations that aim to provide consumers with more information about the “minimum guaranteed access line speed” when signing a contract, but also has benefits if customers find speeds are far below what they expected. Ofcom introduced regulations that allowed customers to break their contract if their speeds fall below the threshold more than five years ago, but until now that information has been privy only to the broadband…