Tech & Gaming
PC Magazine

PC Magazine July 2017

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
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12 Issues

in this issue

3 min.
fighting the right fights

My boss recently asked me to to define what PCMag fights against. This is an interesting formulation. I spend a lot of time telling people what we stand for and rallying the staff around our cause. I also use every opportunity to present our incredibly useful, positive, and proactive mission statement. In fact, let’s review it quickly: PCMag.com is a leading authority on technology, delivering Labs-based, independent reviews of the latest products and services. Our expert industry analysis and practical solutions help you make better buying decisions and get more from technology. But I don’t often think about what we are against. That’s a mistake: Some enemies are worth having, and some battles reveal who you really are. I am not talking about the current political landscape, where we’ve refined the art…

2 min.
can the microsoft surface laptop compete with apple?

Baffling that Apple has abandoned the [MacBook] Air market. I work with Apple and Surface due to my job, but I use my Surface more and more. I wanted to upgrade my Air to something higher-performing with USB-C and USB 3.x, but Apple just seems to be out of touch with what their customers want in a lightweight, high-performance laptop. I get not using the latest Intel chips (last year) due to production delays, but will they recover this year? I can’t see replacing hundreds of dollars of perfectly valid USB 3.x devices because of a “fashion statement,” either. If I didn’t use my Air to back up my phone and iPad, I could probably sell it and never look [back]. It’s sad, really, that Microsoft is trouncing Apple in…

2 min.
samsung demos stretchable oled display

Samsung was one of the first manufacturers to make OLED screen technology a viable option for consumer electronics, and it currently makes the best panels on the market. The company has been showing off flexible AMOLED panels for years, but now it’s demoing something new: stretchable OLEDs. In addition to bending and flexing, you can also change the shape and size of these panels without distorting the image. Samsung unveiled the prototype display at Display Week 2017 in Los Angeles. The OLED panel is 9.1 inches, which is in the size range for a tablet. The larger size also helps show off the impressive stretching capabilities. What sets this apart from other flexible displays shown in the past is that it can be deformed in two directions: It can bend but…

4 min.
the coolest features in ios 11

Apple kicked off its annual Worldwide Developers Conference in June with six key announcements: One was its newest mobile operating system, iOS 11. Craig Federighi, Apple’s senior vice president of software engineering, promised “hundreds of new features and incredible updates” for existing iOS apps. The company released a beta version of iOS 11 to developers at the conference and promised a public beta in July for those who like to tinker with new software. Everyone else will get iOS 11 in the fall, which is likely when new iPhones will be released. With hundreds of new features, not everything can be a winner. A new look for the App Store? Meh. Revamped Control Center? Better than before, but it looks a bit cramped. But several things caught our eye and will…

5 min.
best of computex 2017

In 2017, the organizers of the Computex trade show in Taipei—the second biggest one in the world for tech, apart from the CES bombast in Las Vegas every January—refocused the annual show on several new axes: among them were IoT, cloud services, gaming, and VR. The last two fields are tied closely, of course, to core changes in the PC-component ecosystem. That’s why we go to Computex every year, and boy, 2017’s show delivered on that front. Computex is always a showcase for the best new PC tech coming out of Taiwan’s major PC players, as well as major core-tech anchors such as Intel and Nvidia. And Asus, Acer, MSI, and others showed off impressive new products, from budget 2-in-1s to lots of powerhouse gaming laptops. Asus in particular announced a…

1 min.
what we love most this month

FELIK This AI toy keeps your pets busy when you can’t. From its perch on the wall or countertop, Felik monitors the room for movement and uses an infrared-sensitive camera to track your cat or dog. Its AI predicts predatory activity (it knows when the animal is about to pounce) and prepares to react appropriately. The real selling point is Felik’s ability to behave naturally, moving the laser to simulate actual prey rather than in the random directions humans typically aim. $179 (shipping in November), www.felik.net BIKI The unmanned underwater vehicle (UUV), aka the “world’s first bionic robot fish,” was designed with advanced bionics tech developed for arctic research. Boasting automated balance, obstacle avoidance, and a 4K camera, the fish-like device lets you “visualize the underwater world from a completely new perspective.” It offers…