Maccast 2016.04.12 - Show #567
V Opening
V Opening Music
* Music is Say Anything by Manda and the Marbles
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V News
V iPhone SE hard to come by.
V Sellers out are being reported worldwide and online delivery times are a week or more for most units
* Many of you have emailed to say you've been searching Apple stores in vain.
* Stores in Chine reportedly get new units every day only to sell out in hours.
* DigiTimes is watching chip orders and thinks that Apple plans to ship between 4 to 5 million units in the second quarter.
V Unclear if limited supply means higher sales or simply lower production levels
* Apple did a fast roll out and it does seem to be even selling out in China, which reportedly is getting more inventory than other areas.
V KGI's Ming-Chi Kuo doesn't think the SE will be enough to offset "iPhone Peak" numbers this year
* Does this surprise anyone?
* He sees Apple selling less than 200M iPhone units by the end of 2016
* He also said there was little evidence to support the 3.4M opening weekend sales number in China.
* Also thinks iPhone 7 will sell fewer units than iPhone6s and 6s Plus (which sold 75M)
* Wall Street consensus is for total iPhone sales of 210-230M in 2016, but Kuo is obviously less bullish seeing a number more like 190-210M
* Apple sold a record 232M units in 2015
V Still some analysts think the shortages might bode well for iPhone sales
* Amit Daryanani of RBC Capital Markets in a note to his clients said The SE would add 15 million incremental iPhone sales for Apple this year.
* For it's part Apple already provided guidance that the March quarter would see a decline in iPhone unit sales.
V Apple wants to sell used iPhones in India
* 80 percent of that market buys phones that cost under $150
* Apple holds only a 2 percent share of the market there and the SE with it's USD $586 price may not have much impact
* There is protest from Samsung and other local companies since the used phones apparently would not be subject to usual high import taxes.
V Apple also started an iPhone "leasing" program for the SE, iPhone 6 or 6s to corporate buyers
* Customers can pay the equivalent of USD $15/mo for two years on a 16GB iPhone SE
* Durability tests by Squaretrade showed it matched the iPhone 5s and not the 6 for bend and water testing.
V Bluetooth issues for some iPhone SE customers
* Audio issues with Bluetooth phone calls when paired with a vehicle or wireless headset.
* Also with GPS voice navigation for some people.
* Music playback seems to be unaffected
* Customers say they are getting distorted, staticky, or inaudible audio.
* The issue happens when running iOS 9.3 or 9.3.1 and the carrier or country don't seem to matter. Also the 9.3.2 beta doesn't appear to address the issue
* Good news is it does sound like Apple is aware of the issue and researching the cause. No idea at this point if it's hardware or software or when we might see a fix
* And on the iPhone 7, it's now back to the rumor that the dual camera system will be an iPhone 7 Plus exclusive feature.
V Apple FBI Update
* FBI may be able to keep it secret because of a national security directive that says they have to disclose any vulnerabilities "unless there is a clear national security or law enforcement need,"
V They have not said if they would share details on the vulnerability with Apple or not
* They did confirm the hack they have would not work on the iPhone 5s or newer.
V They did share the details with US Senator's Diane Feinstein and Richard Burr, who plan to introduce a bill, called the “Compliance with Court Orders Act of 2016,”.
* The bill requires anyone to comply with any authorized court order for data—and if that data is “unintelligible,” would demand that it be rendered “intelligible.”
* Doesn't lay out any details on penalties, would seem to outlaw the kind of end to end encryption and end-user encryption Apple, and others, employ in their devices and technology.
* When details of the current bill, which is still a draft, surfaced the Obama administration said they would not be supporting it in it's current form.
V Then new info from The Washington Post claims they purchased a previously unknown exploit from "grey hat" hackers.
* "Grey hat" is a researcher who sells discovered software flaws to governments or companies.
* The knowledge of the new exploit was then used to build hardware used to crack the phone.
* So not Cellebrite or the NAND mirroring technique mention by Snowden
* They are using the technique to help other law enforcement agencies in other cases unlock devices.
* The FBI claims to have the data, but so far has not confirmed if they found anything useful.
V Apple remains somewhat unconcerned about the hack since it only works on older technology
* There are techniques though being developed for newer phones, though nothing so far has been reported to be successful.
V Security flaws vs. features
* A huge story became the "vulnerability" in iOS 9.3.1
* A YouTube video showed you could access contacts and photos from the iOS lock screen using Siri
* Yes, it's possible, but only if you allow Siri from the lock screen which exposes other data as well
* Also, data is exposed from allowing notifications and the control center
* Apple still patched the bug, but now you cannot screech Twitter without unlocking your device
* It's security vs. convenience which is always the balance.
V Disney kicks Apple TV to the curb
* After just six months they are throwing in the towel on Disney Infinity on Apple TV.
V It will not support the 3.0 version
* Disney Infinity figures released from here on out simply won't work with the Apple TV version of the game
* Disney isn't saying why and they don't rule out that support could come back, but it seems unlikely.
* Speculating my guess would be the limited availability to download and store more than 200MB of data at a time.
V Siri knows Baseball and Westros
* Apple has great relationships with the MLB and HBO and Siri seems to benefit from the partnership.
* Apple add a ton of baseball stats and history knowledge to Siri
V Apparently you have the ability to ask detailed questions like "Who won last year’s National League batting title?"
* Did not work for me.
* Can get data on old and new MLB players and info on 28 different leagues including the minor league and Japan's Nippon Professional league
* Data seems to be coming from the MLB, Yahoo! Sports, and Wolfram Alpha
* You can also ask some Game of Thrones related questions (Spoiler alert) like "Is John Snow Dead" and "Is Winter Coming"
V iPad Pro praises and pokes
V iFixit declares it a repair nightmare. Basically it has more glue than any other iPad to date.
* Only a slightly bigger battery than the iPad Air 2. 3.82 V, 27.91 Whr, 7,306 mAh ten-hour battery
* All the other specs were as expected.
V DisplayMate did their analysis of the 9.7-inch iPad Pros display and called it, "the best performing mobile LCD on the market, period."
* The highest absolute color accuracy for both its color gamuts
* The lowest screen reflectance for any mobile display
* The highest peak brightness for any full-size tablet for any picture level
* The highest contrast rating in ambient light
* The smallest color variation with viewing angle
* They also said the color reproduction matches the same gamut offered on the iMac with Retina 5K display
* If you have a 12.9-inch Pro, don't despair. DisplayMate said the iPad Pro 12.9 still has a "very good" display, but the new 9.7-screen is now the one to beat.
* Now it wasn't all good for the new technology.
* When they tested the new "TrueTone" ambient light matching technology they found it did shift the color temperature of the display noticeably, but didn't come close to matching the color of reflected light from white paper.
* They said Apple might make that feature better by including an adjustment slider so the user can tweak it to their liking.
V iOS 9.3.2 beta
* Bug fixes and improvements
* Recent hints in iTunes code that Apple might finally enable the ability to hide pre-installed apps, in iOS.
* Apple also released new betas of WatchOS (2.2.1), tvOS 9.2.1, and OS X 10.11.5 also with bug fixes noted and not much more.
V Apple Watch updates
V You can now buy the limited edition Hermes bands separately
* The Single Tour (USD $340), Double Tour (USD $490), and Cuff ($690)
* New colors, Green, dark blue, white, and orange. Along with the original brown, black, red, blue, and gray colors.
* They will be available on April 19th.
V Analysts are predicting Apple Watch updates soon, but can't agree on how soon or what the features will be.
V Drexel Hamilton analyst Brian White thinks an update may happen in the next 2-3 months and the new disengage will be 20 to 40 percent thinner
* He seems to be mostly alone in the timing
V Most other analysts seem to confirm the "thinner" part, but see the fall as a more likely release date
* Still some, like Ming-Chi Kuo, say the design will remain the same and the internals will get the overhaul.
* He thinks apple will stick to a "tick-tock" iPhone S non-S like schedule for design changes. Meaning this update would be the 'S' like schedule.
V Rumored -other features
* A larger battery.
* Display with improved outdoor visibility.
* FaceTime camera
* Expanded wi-fi capabilities
* New bands and finishes.
V Kuo also thinks Apple Watch will still struggle with sales numbers only selling 7.5 million (yes only) in 2016 a 25% decline. Feels it's mostly due to an immature wearables market.
* He also says the watches dependency in the iPhone, limited battery, and no "killer app" are contributing to lower demand.
* The decline would be even worse if you consider that Apple's likely sold 10.6 million in 2015 with just 8 months of sales.
V Demand among existing Apple Watch owners looks good according to a recent survey by Fluent
* They surveyed 2,578 and just 8 percent already owned an Apple Watch.
* The high cost was a main deterring factor
* But a little over 60 percent of the respondents who already own an Apple Watch said they will upgrade to the new model.
V What's next for Macs
V Both AMD and Nvidia are set to introduce new GPUs
* Based on 14nm and 16nm FinFET technology
* AMD's are called "Polaris" and Nvidia has "Pascal"
* AMD claims the new GPUs will offer over double the performance per watt of their current processors.
* The new GPUs are expected around the summer time
* It might be until the Fall updates that we see the new GPU technology finding it's way into our Macs
* Apple may not wait that long as there are rumors of a WWDC update for the MacBook lines in June
* Could be that Apple first features the new GPU tech in iMac and Mac Pro updates in the Fall.
V Apple continues to gain PC marketshare even while PC sales decline
* IDC worldwide has the latest PC sales and marketshare numbers for the March quarter
* The bad news is Apple say a year over year decline of 2.1 percent in shipments. Still good compared to many other PC makers like HP, Lenovo, and ASUS who saw declines of 8-10 percent. Only Dell did better than Apple, by a tenth, slipping just 2.0 percent.
* But on the good news side, Apple's share of the worldwide PC market was up from 6.7% in the March quarter last year to 7.4 percent this year.
* Numbers from Gartner have Apple fairing better on shipments, but slightly lower in market share. They say Apple's shipment increased 1 percent and that marketshare is 7.1 percent
V The "gods" of project Titan
* AppleInsider was the first to uncover all the building and spaces Apple seemed to be assembling in Sunnyvale
* The theory has been that Apple was getting spaces for their rumored car project. A project set up under a mysterious "shell" company called "SixtyEight Research" and called "Project Titan"
* You may or may not know that the "titans" were the parents of the greek gods
* Well now Silicon Valley Business Journal is reporting that a number of the secretive buildings Apple has leased or purchased have code names based on the names of greek gods and mythical creatures.
* The names were revealed in city documents and are things like Rhea, Athena, Zeus, and Medusa.
V The building also have details about their facilities and usage
* Things mentioned are lube bays, wheel balancers, spray rooms, metal/ machine rooms, participant testing, eye tracking, vision lab.
* While not definitive, it seems about the closest thing to hard evidence that Apple is doing some kind of car based project and R&D
* But with rumors that Apple won't have anything out until 2019 or 2020 the question becomes, is that too late?
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V Feedback, commentary, opinions
V Comments on apps and pricing models
V Many of you have asked me to comment on Smile's recent decision to move TextExpander to a subscription model
* My immediate reaction was one of confusion, frustration, and sadness
* I need time to process.
V Their announcements today did help
* Lifetime 50% off for any existing owner of TE
* Will continue to support and sell TE 5 and TE Touch 3
* The issue is bigger than just one developer and more complex then many who took to Twitter to fling their anger at one developer would have you think.
V We talked about this all before
* When Apple decided to develop the "app store" model they changed how we buy and sell software. For good and bad.
* "The new app order"
V No free trials, no upgrade pricing, race to the bottom pricing, etc.
* Yes, I get developers can get past these by not using the App Store on OS X, but it's not an option on iOS
* Developers are just trying to find a way to make a living, so they can continue to bring us great apps
* Some will raise prices, some will look at subscriptions, some will do freemium, add-on services, etc.
* I personally find in-app purchases and in-app "consumables" infuriating, but I understand why developers use them.
V There are real people behind these decisions and apps. Don't forget that
* Many of your favorite developers are some of greatest and best people in our community. They are great supporters of the community and the platform. Why else would they bother creating apps?
* They are us. Members of our community. The only difference is that part of their being in our community depends on the ability to create great software that the rest of us benefit from.
* This is not something they are "doing" to us. It's "for" us.
* They need to be able to make a profit on their software to keep that part of their involvement in our community.
V They want to serve their customers and sometimes that means some customers may get excluded.
* Apple does this all the time. Aperture and FinalCut are good examples.
* They are trying to run a business and making decisions they think are best for the future of the products and the customers.
* Sometimes those choices are right and sometimes they don't work out.
V It's insulting to imply that the developers made these hard choices without thinking it through.
* We don't know all the factors that go into those choices
* Their decision might affect you as a single customer, but it might be the right choice for the larger majority of their customer base.
* Spewing vitriol and hate at them doesn't help anyone.
V I still worry about the "in" and "out" problem for consumers
* Subscription services will force us to think harder about the products we use and why
* We will make hard choices and might need to find alternatives for some of our favorite products and services
* When I choose to add a subscription then another product or thing might not get upgraded or purchased
V Will I continue to use TextExpander?
* I don't know.
* It's a tool that I use and love.
* I'm evaluating my usage and how much value I get from the software.
V I think that it's saves me enough time to justify the ~ $50/yr. cost.
* Really $20/yr. for existing owners of ANY version of TextExpander.
V Is TextExpander "worth" it.
* Absolutely for MANY of their customers and users
* Many will benefit form the sharing and syncing model.
* It's a quality product with great developers who are passionate and love this community.
V But this whole thing isn't just about one developer or one product
* Developers are "us". They are part of our community.
* We need to support and champion their efforts even when we don't directly benefit
* Even when we might have to make the hard choice to use another product.
V If you decide the TextExpander service isn't going to work for you there are alternatives.
* MacNN wrote a great piece on using Keyboard Maestro (Mystro)
V Peer to Clear Apple TV issue
* Recently we've been hearing a lot about so called security "holes" in Apple's software
* Many of these are not really "holes" as much as they are oversight in thinking about the balance between security and privacy.
* The issue is that some of the decisions made by Apple engineering may not be obvious to users of the products.
* Siri on the lock screen for example can expose contents of text messages or Contact info.
* Play Apple TV peer-to-peer voicemail from Gary
* If you've enabled Airplay support on a 3rd gen or newer Apple TV it may or may not be obvious
* You might think distance protects you, but I tested and my WiFi extends two houses down from my house.
* Airplay on Apple TV does have security options, but likely most people don't (or won't) use them
V Security
* On your Apple TV, go to Settings > AirPlay
* Under Access Control choose Security
V You get two options
* Passcode or Onscreen Code. When they try to Airplay it will display an on-screen code they need to enter to be able to Airplay
* Password - They will have to know the password to be able to Airplay.
* The security options as far as I can tell require the access code or password each time you want to Airplay something
V Device Verification
* Toggle 'Require Device Verification' to 'ON'
* The first time a new device tries to Airplay there will be an on-screen code they need to enter.
* From that point forward that device seems to be "authorized" to AirPlay
V Ping iPhone Apple Watch Trick
* This was a cool one from the guys over at iDownload Blog
V Chances are if you have an Apple Watch you know that you can use it to "ping" your iPhone
* It helps you find your iPhone
* Swipe up on the Watch to bring up the Settings glance and then tap the 'Find Phone' icon
* The iPhone will alert with a "ping" sound each time you tap the button
V Turns out there is a way to not only get the sound, but also a visual cue as to the phone's location
* If instead of just tapping the "Find phone" icon you instead press and hold the phone will not only ping, but also flash the LED flash
V How I keep up with news
* Recently I asked about how and if you use Apple's new News app on iOS
* I explained how I use it.
* I also mentioned I use RSS a lot to get my news.
* Greg asked if I could explain my RSS workflow
* One of the challenges when you start to subscribe to a lot of RSS feeds is just managing everything.
* I subscribe to about 20 Apple News related sites/feeds. Then I also have another 15 just general technology related feeds
* That generates 300-400 articles a day (sometimes more) that show up in my feeds.
V I use [Feedly]( to organize and sync my feeds.
* I use "collections" to separate feeds by type (Apple, Technology, News, Entertainment, etc.)
V I use a "triage" system to get through my articles daily
* I will simply take a first pass through and "star" the articles I think I may be interested in reading
* I also triage longer form articles, that will require longer reading and analysis, into [Pocket](
V I can do my triage in any app on any of my devices or Mac
V On the Mac I use [ReadKit](
* Has not just Feedly, but Pocket, and even Delicious (which I used to use for just links).
* On iPad I use [Mr. Reader](
* On iPhone I use [Newsify](
* I am considering moving back to [Reeder]( on iOS
V One key feature I need in my RSS reader is a Pocket or Instapaper reading mode
* Need to be able to get the full article without distraction of ads or extraneous content
* After I've triaged, then i simply come back and look at my "starred" list and read those items. Also, usually on the weekends or when I have down time, I will open up Pocket app and read the longer form articles.
* The system allows me to whittle down thousands of articles a week to maybe 50-100 or so that I actually read.
V Another quick side tip, for when you come across an article in Safari. Don't forget the 'Reader mode'
* When you find an article look in the URRL bar on the left for the three "lines"
* Click that and you'll get a distraction free reading experience with just the article contents.
V Closing
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V Thanks to my sponsors
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