Computer Shopper July 2020

Computer Shopper is the essential monthly magazine that allows you to stay abreast of the latest news and releases in the world of technology. With more reviews, hands-on guides and features than any other tech monthly, you’ll be better informed by reading Computer Shopper.

United Kingdom
Dennis Publishing UK
Back issues only
12 期号


welcome page

As I sat and wrote my welcome letter for the previous issue in late March, the UK had just gone into lockdown, and it was the first few days of schools, non-essential shops and businesses being closed. As I write this at the end of April – with the vast majority of Brits complying with the new stay-home rules and the virus peak having passed – the focus is now on how the lockdown will be eased. A core part of lifting restrictions involves technology, namely a new contact-tracing app being developed by NHS (see ‘The Lowdown’, page 17). But this will require millions of us to sign up – and share our data with the app. By the time you read this, certain restrictions may already have been lifted, although life…

star letter

Exchange rates @ Please spare a thought for those of us still stuck on exchange-only lines. With talk of Gigabit connections and fibre-to-the-home, we are still unable to get fibre-to-the-cabinet. The problem has only got worse due to self-isolation and the need to work from home; the demands on the already slow ADSL connection have got worse. After checking online, BT Openreach always has the same message in its postcode checker: “We don’t have plans to upgrade your area yet. But we’re working with government and industry to change that.” Given that the rest of the village was fibre-enabled over two years ago, this seems like an empty promise. Reverend Anthony William Mitchell We’re sure there will be many others like you facing worse internet speeds than usual during the lockdown. According to the most…

letters Profit of doom I read with interest the review of home office PCs (Shopper 387). On the lookout for a new PC, I checked out some of the websites given. As of mid-April, Palicomp has kept the price at £600, Wired2fire is now at £603 but Chillblast has increased the Fusion Dauntless Family PC to a whopping £760. That is an increase of over 25% on the price in the article. The specification appears to be the same but the price has increased since the article was published when the Chillblast website showed the price as £600. Is this profiteering? I fail to see how such an increase could occur in such a short time and thought I should bring it to your attention. C McPherson PC component prices can fluctuate rapidly, which has a…

in the next issue

Better broadband Tips and tricks to get ultra-reliable, fast network speeds for all your devices and across your whole home. Plus the best routers and mesh systems for your home setup In search of reality From vision to sound, and touch to smell, we explore the technologies that make our computing experience ever more like the real world Unleash VLC The free media player that lets you download from YouTube, convert video formats, and play any type of online content Soundbars on test We try out eight soundbars to find which makes the best home cinema upgrade COMPUTER SHOPPER ISSUE 390 ON SALE IN NEWSAGENTS FROM 11th JUNE…

lockdown lock-in

Tech pioneer and all-round good egg WE QUEUE WITH heads bowed, dishevelled and confused, maintaining the statutory distance from one another to prevent contamination. One by one we approach the side window, mutter a few words and then, slowly and with grace, we hand over our begging bowl to a disembodied gloved hand that reaches out to receive it. Our vessels are dipped in a solution of vinegar and holy water against the infection, before somewhere in the sanctuary of the hidden interior they are filled with cleansing beer, then returned through the gap. For this holy ritual we must pay, of course. We do not use coin. It is too dangerous. We use a little tarot card, which we wave in the air then bring near to the upturned face of…

tech together to beat the virus

Software guru and Shopper legend WHEN I FIRST encountered a computer, it occupied a large room with its own special air conditioning, and a team of operators to keep it running. I’m not sure which IBM 360 model it was, but the Model 30 version had a maximum of 64KB of memory, and could perform up to 34,500 instructions per second. That was main memory – RAM. This isn’t a ‘back in my day when dinosaurs roamed the world’ piece, however. What I want you to think about is the computing power we now have by comparison, even on our phones. A typical modern smartphone probably has 8GB of RAM, or to keep the same units as used so far, 8,000,000KB, around 125,000 times more than that mainframe computer. A smartphone can…