Maccast 2014.12.26 - Show #510
V Opening
V Opening Music
* Music is Say Anything by Manda and the Marbles
V Sponsor: Smile
V PDF Pen Scan+
* Complete mobile scanning and OCR app
* One-touch scanning directly from your iPhone or iPad camera
* Scan multiple images into a single document
* Detect page edges automatically and crop scan
* Use OCR (Optical Character Recognition) to convert scans into searchable PDFs (OCR is performed in-app, not sent to a cloud service)
* Preview and copy text recognized by OCR
* Automatically upload scans to Dropbox and iCloud
V NEW in PDFpen Scan+ 1.5:
* Improves camera layout
* Adds image stabilization
* Supports iCloud Drive

V News
V BBC shines harsh light on Apple supplier
* A BBC program, Panorama, ran an exposé on working conditions in Pegatron’s factory and called to question Apple’s ability to protect workers rights at it’s suppliers
* The program featured under cover video captured at the factory that was responsible for iPhone 6 assembly. The organization planted undercover workers with cameras to capture footage.
* Reporters discovered numerous infractions, including illegal ID card confiscation, excessive working hours, poor living conditions and underage workers.
* Many of the issues covered in the footage are in direct violation of Apple’s own Supplier Code of Conduct which states among other guidelines that overtime should be voluntary.
V The expose also highlighted horrific working conditions in tin collection practices in Indonesia showing children digging out ore by hand in muddy pools.
* It’s important to understand that Apple doesn’t source tin directly, so this part of the report was focused on 3rd party suppliers.
V To me what the report showed was the extensive lengths suppliers will go to to hide their activities from Apple
V Apple is doing more than any other company in their industry to attempt to hold suppliers accountable and impact change
* Apple audits direct suppliers, but also 2nd and 3rd tier providers.
* Apple performed 451 audits across their supply chain in 2014. They use their own auditors in combination with 3rd party auditors
* They also commission independent audit from the Fair Labor Association
* Apple discloses the results of their audits publicly on their site with their Supplier Responsibility Progress reports
* Obviously they have much further to go, but they are trying.
* I also feel that they can make more of an impact by continuing to police and monitor their supplier vs. pulling out.
* Apple’s competitors use these some facilities and are not doing nearly the oversight that Apple is. the conditions would only get worse without Apple’s presence in my opinion (and I think Apple’s too).
V This is a multi-level issue
* Companies need to effect change, but also social organizations and governments need to do more.
* It will take the World Trade Organization, companies, like Apple, and the US and other governments involvement to have a real impact and implement meaningful and long term change.
V For it’s part Pegatron claims it will inspect all negative claims carried in the report and implement improvements to make sure these problems are solved.
* I can’t help but wonder though if this is purely lip service considering that the video show Pegatron’s own practices as being most of the problem.
* They claim they provide strict training to both its management and workers.
* Apple will continue to get singled out, but I think that they are willing and happy to take up the charge and lead by example
V iPhone sales boom over holidays
* AppleInsider mentions a Morgan Stanley survey that predicts Apple could break it’s all-time quarterly sales record for iPhone’s assuming they have been able to keep up with demand.
* The Morgan Stanley number would be on the high side. They think Apple could report sales as high as 67 million units for the holiday quarter.
* Other analysts and Wallstreet have predicted much lower volumes more in the rang of 62 to 63 million units.
* Even at the lower numbers Apple would still break last years quarterly unit sales record which was 51 million iPhones.
V Shipping times and stock on Apple’s iPhone 6 models has improved in recent months according to reports.
* Also demand seems to remain high. Both good signs showing Apple should have a great quarter.
* Piper Jaffray conducted a survey of 1,004 US smartphone consumers who plan to purchase a new device in the next 3 months and half claimed they plan on buying an iPhone model.
V Apple continues to be a top brand among college students
* In a somewhat limited survey of 880 college students the used book company Chegg found that 51 percent of students named Apple as their preferred smartphone, tablet and laptop brand. Also 46 percent named Beats as their top pick for headphones.
* For smartphones and tablets Samsung was the second most popular brand at 30 percent
V In another survey Piper Jaffray took a look at the demand for the Apple Watch
* Consumers seem to be pretty cautious about Apple’s offering.
* Just 7 percent of iPhone owners say they plan to buy the Apple Watch.
* Piper’s Gene Munster thinks customers are taking a "wait-and-see" approach and demand should increase as Apple reveals more details about the device
* Still even with what seems like small demand it’s expected that Apple could sell up to 10 million units before the end of 2015.
V 12-inch Macbook Air still rumored for 2015
* Expected to enter mass production in the first quarter of 2015, manufactured by Quanta Computer
* Expected to be even slimmer and lighter and will use Intel’s latest Broadwell processors
* it’s thought that Apple might get it thinner by eliminating the fan assembly and/or making the trackpad touch enabled, removing the physical clicking mechanism.
* We also had previous rumors that the 12-inch Air could pick up the iPhone’s gold and space grey color options
V Apple TV Watch ABC full episodes without subscription
* ABC has updated it’s iOS and Apple TV apps and now allows viewers access to full-length episodes one week after they air, without having to authenticate with a cable provider subscription.
* If you do have a cable package you can start streaming shows next day.
* They also added live viewing in specific markets like, Chicago, Fresno, Houston, Los Angeles, New York, Philadelphia, Raleigh-Durham and San Francisco.
* Looks like most shows offer the last 5 full episodes
* The episodes also are shown with ads.
V Apple Pay continues winning consumers
* A MarketWatch article citing a new ITG Investment Research Report on Mobile Payments indicates that Apple Pay purchases in November accounted for 1 percent of all digital payment dollars.
* That’s far behind other more established services like Square (18 percent) and PayPal (78 percent), but shows signs that consumers are rapidly adopting the new platform.
* Remember Apple Pay in retail locations is limited to iPhone 6 and 6 plus devices only and both the devices and Apple Pay have only been available for a few months.
V 60 percent of new Apple Pay customers used Apple Pay on multiple days through November.
* The repeat rates and transaction frequency for Apple Pay are well above the industry average and indicate that consumers are happy with the Apple Pay experience
V The number on place people are using Apple Pay is at Whole Foods.
* They accounted for 20 percent of all Apple Pay purchases
* Walgreens was in second at 19 percent followed by McDonald’s at 11 percent of all Apple Pay transactions
* What it shows is that while Apple has worked hard at getting payment processor and bank support for Apple Pay, then need to work much harder at getting adoption at retail locations.
V Despite the early success it looks like some of Apple’s retail and app partners might not get Apple Pay running before the end of the year as announced.
* Apple slightly changed it’s Apple Pay partners page language for partners to read "Coming soon" instead of "later this year".
* The retail partners include ACME, Albertsons, Anthropologie, Free People, Urban Outfitters, and Walt Disney World and the app partners include Starbucks, StubHub,, and Ticketmaster,
* Still Ticketmaster added app support last week and Walt Disney World was slated to go online with Apple Pay last week as well
* The change in language might be more about giving Apple’s partners more flexibility on the "this year" deadline as we get close to the end of 2014.
V Apple patches NTP security issue
* Apple pushed out a security update for Yosemite, Mavericks, and Mountain Lion users to address a security flaw in the Network Time Protocol service on OS X
* The issue was originally discovered by the Google Security Team about a week ago.
* The vulnerability has the potential to allow an attacker to execute arbitrary code by triggering buffer overflows using the privileges of the Network Time Protocol daemon (ntpd)
V Something unique about this update is that it didn’t require any user intervention.
* Apple introduced the technology for automatic security updates two years ago, but until this week had never used it.
* I simply got a notice that the security update had been applied.
* Apple spokesman Bill Evans said, "the update is seamless. It doesn't even require a restart."
V Sponsor: Drobo
V Drobo
V Drobo is a safe, expandable, simple storage array.
* You can add and configure multiple drive in your Drobo so that if one drive fails your data is still protected
* Increase storage at any time, by adding a new drive or upgrading an existing one to a larger storage capacity
* The lights on the unit let you know the Drobo’s status. When you need to add more storage or if a drive fails and needs replacement.
* They have a range of products to serve your needs. Desktop and mobile solutions. 4, 5, and 8 drive bay models
V One of their most popular the 4-bay model and they are on the 3rd generation with ups the performance of the original design
* It has a new USB 3.0 connection for great performance. Storage review clocked USB 3.0 transfer speeds of up to 200 MB/ sec.
* There’s also a new dual-core microprocessor making it 3-5 times faster than the older model.
* If you’re upgrading you can just move drives from your old Drobo into the new one.
* Other features include the ability to additional redundancy (protection from 2 drive failures), Time Machine support, and an internal battery with a small SSD cache to store data being written to the device in the event of a power failure.
* Also, that Drobo gen3 has a U.S. list price of just $349. An amazing price for an expandable storage array.
V And here’s the best part… two ways to make it easier for Maccast listeners to get their hands on their own Drobo.
* From now until 12/29 you can use the offer code 'HOLIDAYADAM' at and get $90 USD off your choice of a gen 3 Drobo, Drobo 5D, or Drobo 5N.
* Or, if you feel lucky go to before midnight December 31st and register in a sweepstakes to win a gen 3 Drobo.
V Feedback, commentary, opinions
V Dealing with adware
* Last episode we had a listener who had visited a legit site and was suddenly getting a javascript pop-up that in essence DOS’ed his Safari.
* I mentioned how to turn off feature in OS X that will re-open tabs and windows when re-launching an app.
V In this case I thought this was likely just some javascript likely injected by a banner ad on the legit site that was triggering the pop-up.
* I could also be possible the legit site was hacked, but I didn’t really feel there was any local hacking.
V Beans, wrote me after that episode and said he had a friend who had a similar experience lately. A pop that alerted the user to call an 800 number for support.
* If you see one of these BTW, don’t call it.
* In his case they did discover that somehow "adware" had somehow found it’s way on to his friends Mac.
* Beans pointed me to a pretty helpful article on Apple’s support site that covers how to deal with adware
V Apple actually calls it, "ad-injection" software
* Advertising-supported software that can come from third-party download sites.
* Basically it installs the app, but also a background app that launches pop-up windows, ads, and graphics while surfing the web, even if "Block pop-up windows" is selected in Safari preferences.
V How to deal with it.
V Check your browser preferences > Extensions settings and make sure only the extensions you think you have installed are.
* Safari > Preferences > Extensions
* Select and uninstall any you don’t want or don’t use
V Some examples of Ad-injection extensions
* Amazon Shopping Assistant by Spigot Inc.
* Ebay Shopping Assistant by Spigot Inc.
* Searchme by Spigot, Inc.
* Slick Savings by Spigot Inc.
* GoPhoto.It
* Omnibar
V Look for and remove specific know "ad-injection" apps.
* These guys are nasty and embed themselves deep into the OS using launch daemons, SIMBL (Simple Bundle Loaders), and Kernel extensions (ktext)
* Downlite (aka VSearch)
* Conduit (aka Trovi, MyBrand, or Search Protect)
* Genieo (aka InstallMac)
* There are instructions for each in the Apple support article
V Always be careful about what you install and from where
* To get as deep as these do the Apps need permission. They will pop-up and ask fro admin credentials to install themselves.
* Read the dialogs and know what you are giving permission for.
* If it seems suspicious, don’t allow it and do some Googling to see if it’s legit.
V There are apps that scan for Adware and offer removal help too.
* In the past I’ve used MacScan
* There is also Bitdefender, but I cant vouch for either at this point
* I’d personally look for a manual method at this point.
V Other protections
* Safari > Preferences > General. Uncheck "Open safe files after downloading"
* Safari > Preferences > Security. Check "Block pop-up windows" and "Warn when visiting a fraudulent website"
* Safari > Preferences > Privacy. Under "Cookies and other website data" Click 'Details…'. Clean up any cookies and data. You can also just "Remove All Website Data…", but that may remove autologins and data from sites that you wanted to keep.
V Review Safari > Preferences > Notifications. Allow or Deny as needed.
* If you don’t want to be bothered by sites asking in the future about web notifications. Uncheck the 'Allow websites to ask permission to send push notifications' option.
* Don’t run as an 'Administrator' account. System Preferences > Users & Groups. Create a specific "admin" account. In your main user account uncheck the "Allow user to administer this computer".
* Consider changing your ISP DNS to a service like OpenDNS. It has blocking tools on the DNS side that will warn you of know malicious sites.
V Setting a silent alarm in iOS
* Mustafa asked about setting up an iOS alarm that would vibrate only and not make any noise
V By default alarms in iOS will make noise even if your device is on silent (with the switch) and even if Do Not Disturb is on.
* This is so if you set an alarm you’ll always hear it.
* But what if you don’t want that? What if you need something that is discreet because you’re going to be in a meeting or at a show, etc.
V When setting an alarm and choosing the 'Sound' there is a "None" option all the way at the bottom.
* Unfortunately if you choose this option the alarm will go off, it will display the alarm pop-up dialog, and no sound will be played, but also it will not vibrate either.
V Create a "Silent Alarm" ringtone in Garageband
* Open GarageBand and create a new "Loops" project. Call it "Silent Alarm" or "Silent Ringtone".
* Add a new "No Effects" track. Track > New Basic Track
* At the bottom of the screen, click on the Cycle Region button (it's the one on the right with the two arrows going in a circle)
* Toggle from 'Measures' to 'Time' in the LCD mode window
* Drag the yellow "loop" bar in the timeline out to 10 seconds.
* Set the playhead at the beginning and press record. Record about 2-5 second being as quiet as possible. Don’t worry if you capture some noise
* Put your cursor near the end of the recorded track near the top corner. You should see a circular "loop" cursor icon. When you do click and drag the track to extend it out to 10 seconds.
* Drag the track volume slider in the tracks info area all the way to the left (-144.0 dB) to silence the track.
* Save and then under the 'Share' menu choose 'Send Ringtone to iTunes'
* Once it’s exported and sent to iTunes. Dock you iPhone and open iTunes.
* Select your device from the "Devices" list in iTunes.
* Click on the 'Tones' and make sure you are syncing the new "Silent Alarm" tone.
* Press apply and sync the new tone to your device.
* Now you should be able to pick the "Silent Alarm" tone when setting up the sound for your alarm and when it goes off it will still vibrate and display the alert but just play silence.
* If this all seem too complex there are "Silent Alarm" tones you can download and sync to your device. Search "iOS silent ringtone" on Google and you’ll find one.
V Duplicate iTunes "gifts"
* Eric had a great question around this holiday season
* More and more many of us might be sending iTunes item’s as "gifts" this season
* He wanted to know what happens if someone "gifts" you something you already own.
V I had no idea what would happen but you’d want to assume one of the following
* When you enter the persons email to send the gift, if it’s a email registered with Apple, the system would check and warn you they already own the item
* If you send a duplicate and they attempt to redeem it into their account it would tell them and then give them iTunes credit so they could buy something they don’t own.
* Not allow them to redeem they duplicate item and alert the sender so that they could at least "re-gift" the item to someone else.
V What does actually happen?
* I have only tested a song and an app so far
* The song was allowed to be sent and redeemed and the recipient ended up with two of the same song in their library. Might have been different formats (protected AAC and non-protected), but both were iTunes purchased music.
* The App was also "redeemed", but just one copy remained in the library.
V I was able to see that prior to the item being redeemed the sender can go into their account in iTunes and change the recipient and re-send the gift.
* iTunes > Store > Accounts. Under 'Purchase History' click the 'Manage Gifts' option. From there you can make changes and re-send before the item is redeemed.
* After it’s been redeemed all you can do is see that they redeemed it.
* After this fiasco I emailed iTunes Store support, but have not had any response. That was four days ago.
* In a way this feels like "theft". At they very least they are double dipping on many consumers.
V Closing
V Podcast Marketplace
V Thanks to my sponsors
* Smile
V Gazelle
* Gazelle. The fast and simple way to sell your used gadgets! Find out what your used iPhone, iPad and other Apple products are worth at
* helps you learn and keep-up-to-date with your software, pick up brand-new skills, or explore new hobbies with their easy to follow video tutorials.
* Get a free trial by going to
V Supporters
* Bandwidth for the Maccast provided by CacheFly at
* Advertising is handled by Backbeat Media at
V Keep emails coming. Audio comments.
V 281-622-4269 or 281-Mac-I-Am-9
* MacCast Forum
* Follow me on Twitter
* Checkout the page on Facebook
V New Music: Bartlee Norton & 64 Highway
* Today’s track is from Keith the bass player for the band Bartlee Norton & 64 Highway.
* It’s country which isn’t normally my style, but I liked it and I know many people are fans.
* Their music can be found on iTunes and in Spotify, so if you like it support the band by buying their music and adding it to your playlists.
* You can also get more info and buy the music on their site
* If you have a band and a song you think we’d like please email me. Not everything will get played, but I’ll try to share my favorites.
* "Nothing I Don’t Love" by Bartlee Norton & 64 Highway