PC Magazine March 2021

PC Magazine provides lab-tested reviews, detailed tips and how-tos, insightful feature stories, expert commentary, and the latest tech trends to help you at work, at home, and on the road. And for a limited time, we're offering a copy of Breakout: How Atari 8-Bit Computers Defined a Generation with new subscriptions. This brand-new book is all about what made Atari's computers great: excellent graphics and sound, flexible programming environment, and wide support.

United States
Ziff Davis
12 Issues

in this issue

1 min
achieving your best home internet

At PCMag, we love nothing more than helping you make the most of your technology. And for the many of us who are working and attending classes from home (and for now, anyway, spending almost all our leisure time at home), internet connectivity is a supremely important technology. Maybe you’re streaming more than usual (those Zoom business calls, those Netflix nights). And maybe you have a few more people than usual eating up your network’s bandwidth (school! video chat! games!). In our March issue, you’ll find everything you need to get the best performance from your home internet, including explainers, how-tos, and product reviews. Our advice goes far beyond just setting up your home network: You’ll learn how to make the most of your existing connection, how to extend your Wi-Fi’s range,…

6 min
what is clubhouse? the invite-only chat app explained

Wondering why you’re hearing a lot about Clubhouse lately? We can partially blame Elon Musk: By popping up in a Clubhouse room in February, the world’s richest man (for now) brought the service a lot of attention. Here’s what you need to know about the exclusive chat app. Okay, so what is it? Here’s the gist: Imagine you have an app on your phone that lets you listen in on other people’s live conversations. But not in a creepy way; these people want to be heard. They may even be interesting or knowledgeable (no guarantee, though). And you may be given the opportunity to join the chat. Think of it as an audio-chat social network. So there are no pictures or video? No, only profile pics for each user. What platforms are supporting the app? Clubhouse…

3 min
microsoft’s viva aims to make remote work easier

While many companies are still mastering the art of working from home, Microsoft has introduced its virtual solution: The Viva employee experience platform helps folks learn, grow, and thrive, even from their kitchen tables. Powered by Microsoft 365 and Teams, Viva makes it easy for customers to merge existing systems and tools with fresh features for a more accessible, discoverable workplace. “We have participated in the largest at-scale remote work experiment the world has seen, and it has had a dramatic impact on the employee experience,” Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said in a statement. “Viva brings together everything an employee needs to be successful, from day one, in a single, integrated experience directly in Teams.” At launch, Viva includes four modules, with more on the way. VIVA CONNECTIONS A majority of people feel…

2 min
it turns out huawei’s harmonyos is still just android

Huawei got to enjoy only a few months at the top of the smartphone heap before the US government knocked it down a peg. Since the Commerce Department’s actions against the Chinese megafirm, Huawei has been unable to use Google services on its new phones. The company’s solution was to develop HarmonyOS, a new operating system that would replace Android, according to Huawei. Now that we’ve gotten our first real look at HarmonyOS, though, one thing is clear: HarmonyOS is just Android with a skin. As long as Huawei is on the Commerce Department’s “Entity List,” it cannot do business with any US company unless that company has been granted a special license by the government. Even some foreign companies that use US technology, such as ARM Holdings, have been forced…

4 min
why is everyone so starstruck by starlink?

Starlink is catnip for PCMag readers. Just say the word, and they come a’clicking in the tens of thousands. The satellite ISP’s mystique is a combination of Elon Musk (an unappealingly named men’s cologne) and Americans’ hopeless desperation for better home internet choices. And at this point, it’s getting way out of hand. “SpaceX is aiming to one day deliver 10Gbps internet speeds over its satellite internet system,” our story reads, couching SpaceX’s ambitions in similar terms to my ambition to have ripped abs. Americans are desperate for better connectivity. They’ve given up on regulators, incumbent ISPs, and their own communities to provide them. They’re holding out for a hero (‘til the end of the night). They want Musk to be their streetwise Hercules, but he’s Loki. But not hot. Kind of…

6 min
the pandemic will delay new games for years, so stop complaining about your backlog

Considering the nightmare that was 2020, I don’t think I’ve seen a more collectively cathartic New Year’s celebration than 2021’s. Granted, what separates one year from another is largely arbitrary, and many of 2020’s problems have continued into 2021. But with COVID-19 vaccines trickling out, we can at least begin to vaguely imagine an end to the pandemic that made life in 2020 such a locked-down disaster. Hopefully, we’ll get past the mass death as soon as possible, but we’re going to feel the impact of this pandemic in all parts of life for years to come. Video games exist as part of this larger world. This young new console generation has already been shaped by the current crisis, in some ways we may never see. So as you prepare to…