PC Magazine February 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
R 63,66
R 318,92
12 Issues

in this issue

2 min
living the remote life

Just about a year ago, it might have seemed like a fantasy: living and working wherever we want, thanks to digital technology. Now, though, that dream is real for many more people, although the reason for it is something none of us would have chosen. A Gartner study in July 2020 found that 80% of employers plan to let their employees work remotely at least part-time after the COVID-19 pandemic, and 47% will let employees work from home full-time. This is the situation for PCMag’s employees: We’ve all been working remotely since mid-March 2020, and we won’t be back in the office until summer at the earliest. Some of us won’t be returning at all. Our employers decided remote work was as productive as working in the office for many positions…

7 min
what is c-band, and what does it mean for the future of 5g?

A half-dozen companies are potentially ready to spend $80 billion for C-Band, a new set of airwaves that promise to fix the perilous state of American 5G, at an FCC auction. That’s a vast amount of money, and it shows how important C-Band is. But what is C-Band, and what does it mean for 5G? Do you need a C-Band phone? Is C-Band a new frequency? Should you be scared of C-Band? I can explain. RECOVERING THE SATELLITES According to wireless testing firm Rohde and Schwarz, the C-band is all frequencies between 4GHz and 8GHz. When US wireless geeks talk about C-Band, though, they’re talking about 3.7GHz to 4.2GHz—and specifically, in this case, the range from 3.7GHz to 3.98GHz. This frequency had been used for satellite TV since the 1970s, but as C-Band…

1 min
world’s largest dark web marketplace taken offline, operator arrested

The most notorious dark-web marketplace, Silk Road, was forcibly shut down in 2013. Now, an international operation has managed to take down what was the world’s largest active dark-web marketplace and arrested the individual who ran it. As Europol reports, the marketplace in question, called DarkMarket, consisted of almost 500,000 users and over 2,400 sellers, and it handled over 320,000 transactions. In total, it’s thought DarkMarket saw over $170 million change hands in the form of Bitcoin and Monero cryptocurrencies (over 4,650 bitcoin and 12,800 monero). The marketplace was taken offline thanks to a joint operation involving Germany, Australia, Denmark, Moldova, Ukraine, the United Kingdom (the National Crime Agency), and the USA (DEA, FBI, and IRS). The investigation was led by the Koblenz Public Prosecutor’s Office, which discovered the 20-plus servers located…

2 min
storming the capitol started on social media, and it should have ended there

It took an armed insurrection on the US Capitol for Facebook and Twitter to try to quiet the incendiary words of President Donald Trump on their sites. For years, execs at both companies have been asked what it would take—perhaps a call to nuclear war?—to ban Trump from their platforms. The answer came two weeks before his time as president ran out. But as the literal smoke cleared, social media had yet to take steps to stop those who planned the action and potential future ones. Those who stormed the Capitol spent weeks on Facebook, Twitter, and other social media platforms calling their comrades to arms. Plans for January 6, 2021, were known about so far in advance that it was already emblazoned on the merch rioters wore as they tore apart…

4 min
affordable 8k tvs are coming, but you shouldn’t buy one

Be saw lots of new 8K TVs at CES in January, with some coming from vendors known for making affordable models, such as TCL. That means 2021 is likely to be the year we start seeing 8K TVs hit the market at prices that far more people can realistically consider—we’re talking under five digits! Don’t freak out about replacing your still-new 4K TV just yet, though. 8K AT CES TCL’s announcement that its 2021 6-Series TVs will be entirely 8K is one of the more notable pieces of news from this year’s show, as the 6-Series has long been a PCMag favorite for offering high quality at a reasonable price. That said, TCL hasn’t yet announced pricing for its 6-Series TVs, and it noted that 2020 models will still be available this…

6 min
intel and board partners tip z590 motherboards: will they be worth the upgrade?

At CES 2021 in January, slightly under the radar, Asus and other major motherboard makers announced their lineups of new Intel Z590 motherboards that would launch on January 27. That’s well ahead of Intel’s upcoming 11th Gen Core “Rocket Lake-S” desktop CPUs, which are slated for shelves sometime in March. Asus wasn’t the first board maker to officially acknowledge the existence of Z590 boards (that honor goes to Gigabyte). But now that Intel has pulled back the curtain on Rocket Lake, manufacturers are free to follow suit with their own corresponding announcements. But what is Z590 exactly, and what improvements does it promise over the Z490 platform (which launched a mere 10 months ago)? Is it a must-have for leading-edge gamers and content creators or just another minor upgrade for Intel,…