Maccast 11.04.2012 - Show #421
V Opening
V Opening Music
* Music is Say Anything by Manda and the Marbles
V Sponsor: Citrix
V GoToMeeting with HD Faces
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V News
V iPad mini first reviews
* Apple's iPad mini and 4th generation iPad went on sale on Friday
* Crowds seemed to be much lower at Apple stores. Not sure if it's pre-orders, lack of enthusiasm for the products, or what. I think with the holidays approaching we'll see as low burn on sales with bigger December numbers.
* Many stores you could walk right in after launch and walk, out with an iPad mini, but the 5th avenue store in NYC sold out in two hours.
V iPad Mini's biggest deficiency seems to be the non-retina screen
* Most, myself included, don't see that as a deal breaker
* Especially not a big deal if you've never owned a retina device.
* Also since the iPad mini is a smaller device the pixels, while still at only 163ppi, are mush smaller than the ones on the iPad 2, so less distinguishable at the same viewing distance.
* Actually the iPad 4s retina pixels are on 1/3 smaller than the minis
* Slightly less brightness than the iPad retina, but did well when I compared videos side by side
* Stereo speakers are nice and produce good volume, but do distort slightly at full volume.
* Performance is good and the 2 year old A5 holds up well. I did have some scrolling lag issues accessing purchased apps on the store, but that might be the stores fault.
V Size and weight are almost perfect
* Fits in one hand better than I thought
* Really light and thin
* Doesn't compromise on screen.
* Occasionally in some apps UI element s do feel small, but I've never had issues interacting with them
* False side touches are rejected as advertised.
V On the iPad 4th generation side, A6X chip details are beginning to emerge
* Uses a 32nm process like the A6, but is 30 larger
* Has the same number of CPU cores, so the extra space is used up by the quad core GPU
* One theory was that the A6X would use the same Imagination Technologies PowerVR SGX543MP4 GPUs as the A5X, but clocked up. Now AnandTech believes it may be using a more-powerful PowerVR SGX554MP4
* Ships with just 5W power charger and no earPods. The iPad 4th gen also doesn't ship with headphones.
V iPad mini sales predictions
* Apple will likely announce first weekend sales numbers next week but analysts are already making informed predictions
V AppleInsider has KGI analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, predicting first week sales of 850,000 units
* That might seem low, but may represent almost all the minis Apple could produce
* His supply chain check show Apple started only in mid-October and yielded 950,000 units for launch
* The iPad mini rolled out in 34 countries, which is the biggest international roll out Apple has had to-date.
V Kuo predicts overall for the holiday quarter that Apple will out perform the competitors
* He predictions 8.2 million for the iPad mini, followed by 4.5 million for the Kindle Fire HD, and 1.9 million for the Nexus 7
* Most analysts are estimating iPad mini numbers in the 5-7 million range during the quarter, and Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster told his clients on Friday that Apple will sell 1.5 million iPad minis this opening weekend.
V Sites are reporting that the iPad mini is sold out at most Apple retail stores
* Apple has opened up their "Personal Pick-up" service.
* You can go online starting at 10:00 PM and 4:00 AM and check availability of stock at local stores and then order for next day pick-up.
* The service also works via the Apple Store App
V iOS 6.0.1 update
V Release notes
* Fixes a bug that prevents iPhone 5 from installing software updates wirelessly over the air
* Fixes a bug where horizontal lines may be displayed across the keyboard
* Fixes an issue that could cause camera flash to not go off
Improves reliability of iPhone 5 and iPod touch (5th generation) when connected to encrypted WPA2 Wi-Fi networks
* Resolves an issue that prevents iPhone from using the cellular network in some instances
* Consolidated the Use Cellular Data switch for iTunes Match
* Fixes a Passcode Lock bug which sometimes allowed access to Passbook pass details from lock screen
* Fixes a bug affecting Exchange meetings
* Larger 'report a problem' button in the Maps app.
* Redesigned Lock Screen player controls on the iPod touch. These appear to be more spread out and look more like they do in the Podcast app.
* Seems to add the iPad Minis accidental near bezel touch rejection to the full sized devices, iPhones, and maybe iPod Touches as well.
V Apple also released updates to Safari (6.0.2), iPhoto (9.4.2) and Aperture (3.4.2)
* The photo app updates add the ability to drag items from the library to add to PhotoStream.
* Can also now paste in more than one email address in the "Share With" option
* Aperture has a much longer list of improvements
* The Safari update seemed to be mostly security fixes.
V Androids rise in smartphones
* In the 3rd quarter Android based smartphones accounted for 75% of all smartphone shipments according to the latest figures from IDC
* That growth represents and astounding 91.5% year over year gain
* The iPhone and iOS also saw year over year growth. Apple shipped 26.9 million units for a 14.9% share of the market and for a 57.3% growth.
* Apple's 3rd quarter numbers may be slightly lower since it's believed many held of purchases waiting for the release of the iPhone 5, so we might see more share gains for Apple in the December quarter.
* Windows Phone also saw a nice jump of 140% year over year, but still only accounts for 1.2% of smartphone shipments
* Blackberry and Symbian saw a year over year decrease according to the report.
V Fusion Drive details emerge
* The Mac Minis with new Apple Fusion drives are arriving and sites like Ars Technica are breaking them down
* For those who don't know Fusion combines 128GB of Flash storage with 1TB or 3 TB of tradition HDD storage. Software in OS X Mountain Lion then intelligently monitors and manages files and apps to dynamically move the most frequently accessed stuff to the solid state portion of the Fusion drive
* To the OS and apps the two drives are presented as a single volume and Ars confirmed Apple is using OS Xs, Core Storage to make that happen.
V They also discovered that, contrary to early rumor, Disk Utility also only sees a single volume.
* In the Terminals, 'diskutil' command though you can get details on the two parts of the Fusion drive.
* Actually there it presents as 3 disks. The two physical volumes and the 3rd Core Storage volume. Labels disk0, disk1, and disk2 respectively
* Apple's System Information will also reveal the details of the Fusion Drive's split personality. Displaying info on the SSD (Flash) and HDD volumes.
V Because the technology is all built in to OS X and the 'diskutil' command, it has been revealed that you could technical use the same procedure with your own SSD and HDD equipped Mac, but with no GUI based way to soothe process isn't for the faint of heart.
* Doing it on your own would also not be supported by Apple
* It's also not known how reliable it would be.
* Even with an Apple supported Fusion Drive it's also assumed that data corruption on either the Flash or HDD portions of the drive would require a rebuild and restore of the entire Fusion volume.
V Apple restructures executive team
V John Browett and Scott Forstall will be leaving the company
* Tim Cook will assume Browett's duties until a replacement is found
* Forstall will be and advisor to Cook until the end of he year
* Jony Ive will be head of Design and oversee a new interface group
* Craig Federighi will oversee all OS and software development
* Eddy Cue will run all services including Maps and Siri
* Bob Mansfield is now officially back at Apple for 2 years and will head a new Technologies group which will handle wireless technology and chips.
V Forstall was reportedly a source of friction in the executive team
* Say he wouldn't even hold meetings with Ive and when he did Cook had to be present
* Also, some say now that Forstall is on the way out Mansfield was more willing to commit to returning.
V Sponsor: Gazelle
V Gazelle
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V Gazelle is simple and fast:
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* Get a risk-free offer for your gadgets
* Gazelle locks in the offer for 30 days
* Gazelle can send you a box to send your item – They’ll even pay the shipping
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V The risk free is really true.
* Maccast listener Mike got an offer on his iPhone 3G
* He listed it in poor condition, but after sending it to Gazelle they evaluated it and decided the condition was better than Mike though and they doubled his offer.
* He ended up with more than he thought he would. It doesn't happen every time, but nice to know they handle each case like that.
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V Feedback, Comments and Commentary
V Copy track info from iTunes
* On a recent show we had a listener who uses his an iTunes playlist to create set lists for his band.
* The trouble is that printing out those list from iTunes the key data is card to read because the font iTunes uses the C and G characters look similar.
* He wanted a way to adjust the font.
* I offered a "hack" method going in and altering an internal iTunes PLIST file to change the font and font size of the printing.
* Well a Maccast listener had a much easier, safer and better solution. Copy/ Paste.
* You can actually set up the view in iTunes with the columns you want to print and then select the tracks and copy and paste the info into Pages, Numbers, or another app.
* It gives you a tab-delineated result.
* Then you can format it however you want and print it.
V Tablets for content creation
* Steve Ballmer was quoted this past week as saying that, "Neither [Apple, Amazon or Google] “has a product that you can use, that lets you work and play, that can be your tablet and your PC"
V He was referring to advantages of the Surface and the bipolar nature of Windows 8 to attempt to bridge the gap between desktops and tablets and merge them into a single device.
* Microsoft has been there before. They pioneered the tablet computer with pen based hybrid systems. It didn't go we'll then and I don't think it will work better now.
V Why? I had a chance recently to play with a Surface
* The hardware is actually really nice. A bit boxy, lending it that PC feel.
* The touch keyboard cover is a nice innovation. Tactile-wise it is similar to typing on screen, but adds extra room since typing happens on a different surface.
* Ascetically and functionally though you can tell Microsoft is positioning this as a laptop replacement. Everything screens that it's a landscape oriented device.
* It can be used in portrait, but it just feels awkward. From the tall aspect ratio, to the software's lack of elegance in portrait layouts, even down to the awkward way it transitions.
* The work vs. play aspect of current tablets however is an interesting and somewhat accurate comment. The thing is, it's not a device limitation as much as a human limitation.
V Yes there are some technical challenges, but today's tablets already can function as amazing content creation devices.
* There are hundreds of examples of literature, films, music, photography, and art all being produced 100% on tablets.
* Business is being done as well. Invoicing, point of sale systems, scheduling, training, communications, etc.
* About the only place that isn't taking off is Office, and that is mainly a Microsoft issue. There is no office for iPad and corporations and workers are stuck on that.
* So that is really a thinking and generational issue. The iWork suite provides a valid and somewhat capable office solution for tablets.
V The problem is learning to use the new tools and the new UI paradigm.
* Yes the tools are currently limited, but that an change if the usage grows.
* It's sort of a chicken and the egg problem.
* We've grown up with desktops and laptops, but our children will not.
* They will be using new devices and learn the skills to work with new platforms and devices.
* More and more content creation will be done on tablets and the tools will be come more effective as new generations learn the skills and workflows. It's a natural progression of technology.
* The difference between Apple's approach and Microsoft's is that Apple is choosing to envision the future where the tablet replaces, or super ends the PC (Tim Cook believes it will). Microsoft feels the need to offer a bridge device to help bring their existing customer base into the future.
V Global roaming with iPhone
* Play comment from Darren
* If you want to do this and you are on contract you probably want a Verizon or Sprint iPhone
* I believe Verizon iPhone 5s are globally unlocked out of the box while Sprint will unlock them after 90 days of service.
* AT&T requires expensive international mobile data roaming plans.
* LTE is just being deployed in Europe and the Verizon iPhone 5 also supports more LTE bands.
V Remove stock iOS apps with PassHack
* Cult of Mac had a great story/tip that offers a method for removing any Apple installed built-in app from your iOS device without requiring a Jailbreak
* The hack uses a website called and you need to access it from Mobile Safari
* From there you'll see a link at the top to install the 'PassHack' Passbook
* Once the PassBook has been added, open the pass and press the "i" button
* From there you can scroll to see all the Apps you can hide.
* Tap the one you'd like to hide and it will prompt you install a new package, click 'Install'
* It will overwrite the App you are wanting to hide and give an "Unable to Download Application" error.
* Tap 'Done' the App on your home screen will have a partially completed progress bar, but now you can enter "wiggle" mode and tap the "x" button to remove it.
* The next time you restart the device the default apps will be restored, but you can simply use your passHack to re-hide them.
* If you're on an older device not running iOS 6 you can use the page in Safari to perform the same procedures. All the links and buttons are there. The PassBook pass just makes re-enabling the hack after a restart easier.
* The caveat to all this is that I have tried it on my iPhone and it works as advertised, but you are hacking your device and accessing content from a 3rd party site to perform the hack. Use digression and caution when deciding if it's worth possible risks to your device and data when using this hack.
* It seems to be safe, but I don't know exactly what's happening behind the screens to make the hack work.
* I would caution that this is normally the kind of link clicking I would normally warn you against doing.
V iTunes Match expired early
* Play comment from Rob
* I am actually having, or was, the exact same issue on my iPhone 5 running iOS 6
* My subscription doesn't expire until December and all my other Macs using iTunes Match work fine
* I have been following this ever growing support thread on
* I also have a call in with AppleCare support that has been escalated
* A common theme, although not confirmed, is that it may just be the iPhone 5, on LTE, with AT&T.
* Mine does seem to be fixed with the iOS 6.0.1 update, but only in that it works on LTE, but I haven't been mobile yet and haven' t used it extensively.
* Other are reporting still getting the error even after updating, so I'm cautiously optimistic.
V Creating DVD disks
* While Apple's latest Mac models are shedding their optical drives there are apparently still a number of you using those plastic round thingies
* I had a couple people was this week about DVD burning and the Mac.
* The questions are what tools are available form DVD burning, and more specifically Blu-ray DVD burning.
V You'll need a Mac with an optical drive
* Built-in Super drive
* External Superdrive. MacBook Pro with Retina display, MacBook Air computer, Mac mini computer, and soon new iMac
* 3rd party external optical drive. OWC sells them and even has a Bluray drive for around $100 buck US.
* If you're luckily and still have a copy of iDVD or the retail boxed copy of iLife '11 then you can still use that to burn DVDs, not blu-ray
* From the research I was able to do there might be a workflow that you can use Final Cut X, Compressor 4 and the Toast Titanium 11, but the workflow seems convoluted and I couldn't tell if that would let you create DVD menus
* Adobe has a DVD and BluRay authoring tool called Encore, but the problem is that it's part of the Production Premiere Suite which costs $1,799.00 USD. You could get it by subscribing to Adobe Cloud for $49.00/mo for 12 months ($588.00).
V But my guess as to the most cost effective and easiest solution would be to get Adobe Premiere Elements on the Mac App Store.
* It's just $79.00 USD and lets you do the editing, menus, compression, and burning all from one app.
V Closing
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* Gazelle: the fast and simple way to sell your used iPhones, iPad, Macbooks, and other smartphones.   Find out what your gadget is worth at
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