Tech & Gaming
PC Pro

PC Pro June 2019

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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12 Issues

in this issue

3 min.
let’s celebrate tech innovation–even the missteps

@PCPRO FACEBOOK.COM/PCPRO I SIT HERE hurtling towards Paris, on an astonishing piece of technology known as the Eurostar. As I type, a friend sends me a message, direct from his phone to mine within milliseconds, telling me he’s just rented a new house near where I live. He found that house on Rightmove, a service that somehow collates text, photos and mapping information to connect buyers with sellers. And I’m typing these thoughts on a sleek piece of metal and glass that has more computational power than all the computers in existence when I was born back in 1972. We take all this for granted, and that’s fine. How boring life would be if we had to spend the first 30 minutes of every morning saying “wow!” to one another as our eyes…

1 min.

Nicole Kobie What goes on behind Amazon’s closed factory doors? What dirty tricks do companies use to reach the top of the listings? Nicole reveals all from p30 Nik Rawlinson Nik explains how to breathe new life into an old Android phone – or simply make your current phone much more pleasurable to use. See p40 James Morris If you want to buy a workstation, James is the man to turn to for advice. We set him the task of picking from ten powerful contenders. From p78 Paul Ockenden Having tested almost every wireless camera – or so it seems – Paul puts the latest Arlo and Blink through their paces. Find out which to buy from p113…

4 min.
will tech’s titans be torn apart?

TECH GIANTS ARE facing the threat of being broken up, with regulators and governments on both sides of the Atlantic losing patience with firms such as Google and Facebook. There is growing political discomfort over the power and scope of the tech giants, and regulators want to rein them in by either breaking them up or giving rivals access to their most valuable asset: user data. The UK government, for example, has asked the Competition and Markets Authority to investigate the dominance of Facebook and Google in the UK’s £13 billion online advertising market, following a damning report into online practices. The 150-page report, Unlocking Digital Competition, commissioned by the Treasury, concluded that tech giants held too much sway and should face greater scrutiny from a new Digital Markets Unit with legal powers,…

2 min.
five stories not to miss

1 Virgin launches “Intelligent Wi-Fi” to boost performance Virgin Media announced a series of Wi-Fi tools that it says should improve download speeds and better allocate bandwidth across devices. Intelligent Wi-Fi, and Virgin’s associated Connect app, are intended to monitor and manipulate signals and assess whether homes need boosters in certain rooms. The hardware will be free for customers on premium tariffs or £3 for consumers on basic packages. 2 Android Q includes hidden “desktop mode” Android Q, this year’s release of the mobile OS that’s already in beta, has a hidden “desktop mode” that Google hasn’t previously announced. Spotted by developers, the desktop mode would enable smartphone users to plug handsets into external monitors and navigate through multiple windows for a more PC-like experience. Samsung and other manufacturers have already offered similar…

3 min.

Firefox Send Browser firm Mozilla has revealed a tool for sending large files, claiming its Firefox Send service improves privacy and means the content of files can’t be viewed by third parties. The simple-to-use service works on all of the mainstream browsers, with an Android app in late-stage development. File size is limited to 1GB until users sign in or create a Firefox account, at which point the file restriction is bumped up to 2.5GB. With a focus on security, the process is encrypted from end to end using the AES-GCM-128 system. Users can password-protect files and set limits on the number of times the data can be downloaded – from once to a hundred times. After uploading a file, users receive a link to send to recipients, who regardless of file size don’t…

2 min.
certificate disaster waiting to happen

MILLIONS OF REVOKED digital certificates aren’t being checked by the biggest internet browsers, heightening fears that the system will facilitate a massive data breach. SSL and TLS certificates are how browsers validate that websites belong to the entity issued with the certificate, but the web has grown faster than the certification process. “We’ve had the same model and certificate system for public key infrastructure [PKI] since the beginning of the encrypted web and that’s grown in scale over 20 years and we still have the same system,” said Scott Helme, a security researcher who runs courses in PKI. “It’s far from perfect and has shortcomings.” The latest example of a system that’s barely fit for purpose came when researchers inadvertently discovered that GoDaddy, Apple and Google had between them issued more than a…