MacCast 09.18.2011 - Show #366
V Opening
V Opening Music
* Music is Say Anything by Manda and the Marbles
V Sponsor
V Circus Ponies
* Notebook
V Annotation and organization
* Voice
* Tabs and flags
* Sticky notes
* Highlighting
V Multidex
* Creates an instant index
* Words, URLs, Numbers, ToDos (find them no matter which page they are on).
* Updates. Continue to enhance performance and support. Were right there with Lion support even before Lion was released.
* Free trial available
V News
V EFI Firmware updates
V MacBook Air EFI Firmware Update 2.1
* MacBook Air (mid 2011) models.
* Includes fixes that enhance the stability of Lion Recovery from an Internet connection, and resolve issues with Apple Thunderbolt Display compatibility and Thunderbolt Target Disk Mode performance
V Macbook Pro EFI Firmware Update 2.2
* MacBook Pro (early 2011) models
* Enables Lion Recovery from an Internet connection and includes fixes that resolve issues with Apple Thunderbolt Display compatibility and Thunderbolt Target Disk Mode performance
V Mac mini EFI Firmware Update 1.3
* Mac Mini (mid 2011) models
* Includes fixes that enhance the stability of Lion Recovery from an Internet connection, and resolve issues with Apple Thunderbolt Display compatibility and Thunderbolt Target Disk Mode performance
V iMac Graphics anomalies
* Cult of Mac reported on an iMac users having strange graphics and video issues under Lion
* One screen shot shows just the icon in the tabbed switching panel being scrambled
* A restart seems to resolve the issues, at least temporarily.
* Cult of Mac has confirmed that Apple Engineering is aware of the bug and it doesn't seem to be a hardware issue.
* There are reports in the comments of it appearing on other models.
* Apple didn't have a timeline for a fix, but hopefully it can be resolved in a future software update.
V New Macbook Pros this month?
* Electonista has an interesting rumor that Apple may bump Macbook Pro models mid season
* Even though the machines were released in February, they think them might get a speed bump this month
* Reason? Stay competitive with newer PC laptops recently released and because Intel has bumped the Ivy Bridge release back to March or later.
* If Apple waited then the Laptops would go over a year without an update.
* Apple has done mid-season bumps in it's history so the move wouldn't be unprecedented
V I assume it would be a quiet update of just the CPUs
* 13-inch MacBook Pros would jump from the dual-core 2.3GHz Core i5 and 2.7GHz Core i7 of today to 2.5GHz and 2.8GHz
* 15- and 17-inch MacBook Pros would jump from 2GHz, 2.2GHz, and 2.3GHz quad Core i7s to 2.4GHz, 2.5GHz, and 2.7GHz
* Also wouldn't hurt to juice the sagging Back to School sales and add to Apple's fiscal 1st quarter 2012 numbers
V Apple's sales for the current quarter are strong
* Gene Munster noted the latest NPD numbers indicate Mac sales may be up by 22%
* He expects Macs to sell 4.4 to 4.6 million units in the quarter
* Strong sales attributed to Lion, new Mac Book Air and Mac Mini
* Interestingly he expects the typical end of September slowing in sales resulting in a final quarter year over year unit sales gain of 13%- 18%
* Macs should make up 20% of Apple's revenue for the quarter.
V After Ivy Bridge
* At the Intel Developer Forum Intel disclosed details on the next gen chips codenamed Haswell
* Will also use a 22 nanometer design like Ivy Bridge
* Offer a 30 percent reduction in active power use over a modern Core i5
* Intel claims that it could result in notebooks that run 24 hours on a charge (so we may finally get the 8 hours we are promised on current gen chips. ;) ).
V Airport Express update soon
* AppleInsider is reporting
* They note some authorized resellers as showing the current 802.11n Airport Express as discontinued in their systems
* Also longer shipping lead times at resellers like Amazon
* This is further backed up by a source that claims an AirPort Utility 5.6 update currently in development references that it "Adds support for the AirPort Express 802.11n (2nd Generation) base station".
* Like the update that was quietly done to the Time Capsule and AirPort Extreme in June it's expected the Express will get improved range and performance.
V iPad 2 still dominates tablets
* Despite the rise of Android tablets IDC says Apple gained market share in the second quarter
* The tablet market saw an overall second quarter growth of 88.9 percent over the prior quarter and a year to year increase of 303.8 percent selling 13.6 million units.
* Apple's share for the quarter rose from 65.7 percent in the prior quarter to 68.3 percent in the second quarter.
* By contrast Android's share fell from 34 percent to 26.8 percent.
* I think tablet fragmentation in the Android market isn't helping.
V The negative press isn't helping Apple's competitors
* I think the general public see's iPad and "other tablets"
* Android likely suffers when HP, RIM, and Samsung start taking negative press
* Apple shipped 9.25 million iPads last quarter vs. RIM shipping 490,000 Playbooks (19:1) [Bloomberg]
V According Brazil's Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation new iPads could be shipping out of their Foxconn plant by December
* Will reduce iPad price in Brazil by 40%. They have heavy import tariffs.
V iPhone 5/4s rumor roundup
V Prepaid data plans ripe for 4s
V If you believe there IS a 4s which I didn't until this weekend
* An listing for a white iPhone 4s allegedly appeared in AT&Ts internal systems (Engadget)
* AT&T - 240 minutes, Unlimited messaging, $25/mo
* Virgin - 300 minutes, Unlimited text, unlimited data, $35/mo.
* Verizon - Unlimited voice, text, and data. $50/mo.
* No word on tethering and I believe all these carriers announced at least throttling if not caps on their data plans.
* It's also pure speculation if the iPhone will be supported. Historically it hasn't.
V iPhone 4 shipments from Foxconn slowed down in August (9 to 5)
* iPod Touch shipments are reportedly not slowing.
V Casemate may have leaked iPhone 5 images
* they were quickly pulled, but not before being picked up by my several tech blogs
V If they are accurate the radical new iPhone 5 design is basically the iPod Touch
* Aluminum back, but brushed material like the iPad 2
* Black plastic buttons, oblong like on the Touch.
V AppleCare reps were reportedly being told to expect 8 times increase in iOS call volume starting October 10th
* Could be iOS or iCloud
* Could release iOS 5 on the 10th and follow up with a iPhone lunch on Friday the 14th.
* Some estimates had the release date set to the 7th.
V Sprint getting iPad2 in addition to iPhone 5
* Would also bring Unlimited data plans to iPad 2.
* I'm with this rumor until they say it will be a different model than the Verizon one.
* Sprint and Verizon use CMDA networks.
* Speculation is Sprint's iPad 2 would have 4G WiMax support. (why since sprint already announced they'd be moving to LTE)?
V iPhone 5 demand is highest yet
* RBC analyst Mike Abramsky has numbers from a survey of 2,200 people
* 31% said they were likely to buy an iPhone 5. A similar survey done before the iPhone 4 showed just 25% saying they were likely to buy an iPhone 4
* 66% of current iPhone owners surveyed said the were likely to buy an iPhone 5
V iMessage coming to iChat
* MacRumors reported that a developer source found references to iMessage in the frameworks of OS X Lion's version of iChat
* The speculation is that when iOS 5 is released with iMessage that support will also be added into iChat.
V This makes a lot of sense
* Would add additional user base (Macs) to the new iMessage platform, which would help adoption rates
* You're conversations could follow you from Mac to mobile.
V Whether it's true or not Apple needs to do something because their messaging strategy is a mess
* iChat - Video, audio, text
* iMessage (Messages) - SMS and new iMessage protocol (text)
* FaceTime - Video calling
* Personally I's like to see all of this rolled up into iMessage across the OS
V Seems like there is not need for 3 apps that have such obvious crossover.
* Could separate text (iMessage, iChat text) and video (FaceTime, iChat video)
* Do a Skype style client that integrates it all.
V Not without its' challenges though
* iChat supports many other protocols (AIM, Jabber, GoogleTalk, Yahoo)
V Feedback, Comments and Commentary
V More on why Apple's upset with Samsung
* Tony pointed out some things that I think make Samsung a bigger target for Apple
V Apple has given 8 Billion dollars of it's business and they may have had more access than others to Apple's internal info
* This makes their "copying" seem more egregious
* Also likely why Apple is moving some contracts away from Samsung as they expire
* As Tony points out it's a similar situation with Google and Eric Schmidt or Andy Rubin.
* You might also make the same argument against Jon Rubinstein and HP and WebOS
V Cleanliness is next to Jobsliness
* Stan points out a bug that seems to have surfaced in the OS X Lion 10.7.1 update
* After a restart icons on the desktop are suddenly rearranged and ordered cleanly on the right side of the screen, despite how you may have arranged them yourself.
* Might be Steve's way of telling you to clean up your desktop, but I doubt it.
* Seems more like something is causing corruption of the desktops hidden .DS_Store file
V To fix:
* Use the Terminal or other app that displays invisible files to remove the corrupted file
* It will automatically rebuild and then you should be able to put everything back and have it stick.
* At this point you may wish to use the Terminal to make a backup of the file, as it seems like the corruption is likely to return.
* You could also write an Automator app to backup and restore the file.
* Apple obviously will need to address this in an update.
V What's in a name? For Apple, a lot.
* Seth Weintraub had a great piece this week on one aspect of Apple's consumer success that often goes overlooked, but is very significant none the less. Naming.
V Apple's naming
* Simple (Mac, iPod, iPhone, iPad, Apple TV)
V No confusing model numbers.
* The iPhone has numbers (3G, 3GS, 4, 4s, 5), but I think it further illustrates the point.
V Has extended to software
* OS X Lion, iLife '11, but in App Store titles are iPhoto, iMovie, GarageBand
V This change happened around the time Jobs returned to Apple
* Remember the Performa naming? Dozens slightly different models with cryptic model numbers. I had a performa 575
* Power Macintosh 6100/7100/8100. In the 7100 line there was also a 7200, 7215, 7220, 7300, 7500, 7600 and they were release sequentially. The 7220 came out after the 7600.
V Apple's competitors use numbers in much the same way
* Cryptic codes that define new models or slight variations in the specs within a line.
* They usually don't go in any kind of rational sequence and usually don't help the consumer make a buying decision
* You have to know the specs behind the code
V After Job's return the products were distilled down to the basic needs and given simple names
* PowerMac, iMac, Powerbook, iBook
* iPod, iPod Shuffle, iPod Nano, iPod Touch
V The philosophy extends to peripherals and accessories too.
* Airport, Airport Extreme, AirPort Express
* Magic Mouse or Magic Trackpad
V Apple often doesn't change the names as the products mature
* Much like people.
* The new iMac is also iMac
V The naming not only simplifies the choices, but also humanizes and personalizes the products to a certain degree
* Seth notes in his piece the subtle distinction that in keynotes Job's refers to products as "iPod" or "iMac", not "the iPod" or "the iMac"
* I know many Apple users who name their devices like pets.
V Apple simplifies not just the products buy the entire buying experience
* Are you Pro or Consumer?
* Portable or Desktop?
* Good, Better, Best?
V You buy based on your needs and not specs
* Competitors would point to this as a disadvantage. Limiting consumer choice.
V Most consumers are overwhelmed by choice though.
* Buying a digital camera or video camera takes days for me to decipher specs and I still often feel I make the wrong choice
V Apple stores are clean, bright, organized, and thought out
* You know where to go to get which product, accessory, or service
V Apple's online iPad buying page was recently changed
* Single page
* White or Black?
* Wi-fi or 3G?
* 16GB, 32GB, or 64GB?
* Done. (Well on 3G models, you have to pick your carrier too ;) )
V Cross platform external drives in Lion
* Had a question about doing read/write to NTFS formatted drives using a Mac with Lion
* Macs have long had the ability to read from Windows NTFS formatted drives, but can't natively write to them
* For read write between Macs and PCs FAT 32 is usually the choice, but it has a 4GB size limit. Also not as efficient at storage.
V There are a few commercial product that add read/write NTFS support to the Mac
* Tuxtera NTFS for Mac (USD $34.20) - Lion compatible
* Paragon NTFS for Mac (USD $19.99) - Lion compatible
V Free solution has been to use MacFUSE
* FUSE - Filesystem in User Space, open source project. Basically creates a filesystem in the user space and bridges that to the the kernel interface
V MacFUSE is Google project and is an OS X port of FUSE
* MacFUSE was developed for Leopard and ran under Snow Leopard in 32-bit
* Tuxtera has created a MacFUSE port compatible with Lion FUSE 2.2
* There is also a new branch OSXFUSE
V NTFS-3G from Tuxtera for 10.4 - 10.6
* This does seem to work in Lion, but with errors, even using Tuxtera's Mac FUSE 2.2
* Errors mounting disk and it takes a while to mount.
* Seems to work once mounted
V Options
* Don't upgrade
* Use MacFUSE 2.2 and NTFS-3G, seems dodgy
* Buy a commercial product, pricing seems reasonable if you need this type of functionality
V Best option may be to switch formats
* There is a new version of FAT supported by OS X (10.6.5 and higher) and Windows, exFAT
* Supported by 10.6.5 and 10.7. Windows XP SP 2 (with update), Vista SP1, and Windows 7
* You'll need to backup existing drives, reformat, and restore data
* Doesn't really support Linux
* Thanks to Neil Turner's great article for summarizing all this info
V Mission Control tricks
V Assigning apps to a desktop
* Used to be done in the Spaces System Preferences
V In Lion you use Mission Control and Desktops and the assignment is performed within that Desktop
V Launch the App and use Mission Control to place it on the desired desktop
* You can enter Mission control and drag an app up to the upper right to get the "+" symbol to add a new Desktop
* Go to that Desktop and then Control+Click the icon in the Dock.
V Under Options you'll see 3 choices under 'Assign To'
V Need to have multiple desktops active in Mission Control before the Assign To option appears
* All Desktops - App will appear on every Desktop
* This Desktop - Will always launch into that desktop (i.e. Desktop 2)
* None (default) - Launches to whichever Desktop you are currently in
* Assigning to a Desktop and then removing that Desktop seems to break the link.
V Assign different background to Desktops
* Go to Desktop
* Launch System Preferences --> Desktops & Screen Savers
* Choose your Desktop
V Closing
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