It’s very important to get this right. After all, this is the main reason why you’d visit us, right? Well, that and all the other things we do.
Even right back in the day when we started (1996), we always had the philosophy that you could use our PCs as if they were your own. This was very difficult back then as there was no technology to prevent the machines being, well, totally wrecked after a period of time, and it was constant struggle to keep them in good order.
We’re not talking an internet café where all you do is look at your email and send a text only response. You can go where you like and run what you like, even change the text size, page setup, display settings, you name it. Don’t forget we’re here to help if you need us.
About adds on, Patches, Viruses and Updates
Every machine is always kept up to date with the latest patches, add ons and updates. You can be confident that when you sit down at our machines you have a reliable, secure and clean machine to use how you wish. In fact, our cafe was heavily featured in the BBC's 'One Show' about security in internet cafes with Quantum being the example of how to do it correctly. Praise indeed! If you’re worried about any data you might leave behind, simply log off or restart the machine and everything will be reset to a clean state. This also means you don’t need to worry about viruses infecting your media – they simply can’t survive in this environment.
Charging your Mobile
Whilst using our PCs you can charge your mobile at no extra cost just by plugging into the leads provided for Blackberry, iPhones, Windows and Android phones. Simply plug in whilst you're typing - you don't even need to ask! If you're not using a PC, normal internet charges apply. NOTE: the leads supplied are designed for charging only. If you wish to connect your device, you must provide your own lead.
About our Internet Speed
We have access over two lines, currently totaling around 30Mbps with around 2Mbps upload shared across all the PCs in the cafe. Don’t worry, we have systems in place to guarantee no individual can hog all the speed, so whether it’s browsing, watching an HD video, or blasting away on an First Person Shooter, you’ll get fast page load times, smooth streaming, and low latency out onto the net!
Our connection speed doesn't appear that fast by today's standards, but due to limitations because of where we're physically located, it's the fastest possible we can get. Union Street is the ONLY town centre location in Reading that doesn't have access to fibre and cable - and we're located slap bang in the middle of it! That said, we use complex load balancing systems and a clever proactive caching system which creates the impression of something much MUCH faster ...
About Access Limitations (or lack of them ….)
Unrestricted means just that. You can access anything you want, download, install or upload anything you want. We do have some terms and conditions though and, by using our machines, you are agreeing to them. FTP is also possible using any of the downloadable FTP clients.
Peer to Peer (P2P) and Torrent software is not permitted and downloads will be prevented - this includes connected laptops via Wi-Fi.
Installing your own software
If you want to install your own software you can, but remember it will be removed when the machine is restarted. For example, people routinely install software drivers for hardware they might want to put in place, trial apps, utilities, gambling software, specialist programmes, optional game updates and so on. If it's legal and falls within our terms and conditions then we encourage you to use or machines for testing, trialing and playing with new software.
Use of Media
Whilst the machine in each zone vary slightly due to their primary use (ie gaming vs browsing) it is possible to use the following media without restriction – just plug and play:
Floppy disc (I think there's still one in there somewhere!)
DVD/CD Rom (also not a common media, but there's still a few PCs around with drives)
Media cards (most types of card are accepted)
USB devices such as flash memory
Other USB devices such as phones, cameras etc. Please remember your lead!
You can access any of the sites whilst you’re in the café and edit them, even upload photos etc as you normally would. If you’ve a Facebook account, why not like us at Quantum to keep up to date and take advantage of the Facebook only offers we do from time to time.
What’s on the PCs?
All the PCs are serviced at least weekly to keep them up to date. We run Windows 10 on all machines and have been since the beta programme launched. We like it, it's pretty lovely, although we skipped Windows 8.1 because it didn't work very well in our environment.
Every PC has the following list of software installed and always the latest version (except where a specific version is indicated). Software requirements change so fast, this list is not exhaustive and we identify and add in new requirements constantly. Don't forget you can download and install your own software if you wish, no need to ask.
Powerpoint 2010* or later
Word 2010* or later
Excel 2010* or later
Windows Media Player
Open/Libre Office – Full version
All the standard OS apps
Language Packs to change the base language from English to whatever you want to use
Java, Flash etc
*Compatible with formats (.DOCX, .XLSX, .PPTX) as well as older Microsoft Works Files (WPS)
Printing from the PCs
You can print from any of the PCs at any time without having to ask us first to either of our printers - colour or black and white. Your prints are registered against your PC number and will be brought to your desk. For details on printing click here