It’s fair to say that the last few months have not been great for computer owners. There have been security issues with the much-vaunted Apple operating system, problems for some updating their Macs, and the whole Intel debacle which effects almost everyone with a computer.

The one thing that is common with all these issues, is that they are not down to user error, they are because of errors made by companies that we trust to get things right. And seemingly have little to do with cost.

I have a client who had been getting only 1Mb maximum broadband connection speed. When he changed suppliers, his speed immediately went up to above 30Mb, around what it should be. Nothing had changed with his computer or wiring, he was now with a company who are very good at providing broadband.

They don’t sell sports packages, films or anything like that, they’re just do broadband, phone lines and webhosting. So why the huge difference? They stick to what they are good at, and don’t try and be cheaper than everyone else.

So we might have badly behaved computers and/or duff Internet. Why is it a problem that we can’t function without being online? OK, technically we could. Life won’t end because we don’t have a computer, tablet or smartphone that can get Internet. But we’ve all asked ourselves at some point what we did before Google!

What is more concerning, is the amount our society now relies on computers to function, for example government and banks increasingly use the Internet or email  to communicate with us. So when the Internet doesn’t work, it’s not just our Amazon order that we can’t keep an eye on!

Unfortunately paying top dollar is no guarantee. Apple and Microsoft Surface computers are expensive but I still get called about problems with them. And the big broadband suppliers seem to throw in everything but the kitchen sink for big bucks.

So what criteria do we use when spending our own money. Do we buy cheap and hope for the best, or spend big in the expectation of reliability? In the end, the answer is research, buyer beware. Decide what you want from your purchase, and look for the reviews addressing that.

Of course if you can think of someone with wide experience of current technology, it’s worth asking their opinion!