Maccast 2016.08.04 - Show #580
V Opening
V Opening Music
* Music is Say Anything by Manda and the Marbles
V Sponsor: Eero
V Eero
V How much do you depend on your wi-fi? Think about it.
* Not just for web surfing anymore, right?
* Cloud storage, backup, entertainment, and now connected devices (light, thermostat, door bell, coffee maker?)
* When you have wi-fi issues it's like you had your power cut. How often are you resetting your gear?
V And can we talk about rang extending, dead zones etc.
* We've covered on this show all the complex set up and tricks you have to go through to make that work and still it's not perfect.
V This is where Eero comes in. A simple system without the complex set up and hassles.
* It's a system with multiple wi-fi devices that work together to blanket all areas of your house with wi-fi
V You can add Eero's as needed and they work together and at full speed to all areas of your house.
* It's different than generic range extenders which only do single hops or require a separate SSID
* An Eero unit typically covers 1,000 Sq Ft and each unit comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee -- so you can always return one of your eeros if you end up not needing it.
V They sent me a system to try out and it's been amazing
* The set up was as easy as plug and play.
* Using the app I had my system set up in minutes.
* Three zones of my house were all covered and the speeds in all zones were close to the performance I would see when only at the best reception locations using my Airport Extreme router.
* They have also proven to be very reliable. I've not had to deal with periodic system reset like in the past.
* Another advantage vs other systems is the Eero's look great, White, sleek, and low profile like something Apple might have designed.
V For Maccast listeners Eero is offering free shipping
* For free overnight shipping, visit, at checkout select overnight shipping, and then enter the code MACCAST to make it free!
V News
V Hacking, encryption, and Black Hats, oh my!
* Lots of security and hacking stuff this week
V Your deleted iMessages are not all that "deleted" according to security researcher Jonathan Zdziarski
* Hey actually noticed an issue in WhatsApp, but noticed it also exists in iMessage
* It's a common problem with ANY app that might use a SQLite database (most iOS apps do).
* The apps leave a "Forensic trace", because instead of actually deleting, vacuuming, the data the record is just added to a “free list”. Those records do not get actually overwritten until the database needs more storage.
* The reason is likely to save wear and tear on Flash storage write cycles.
V It's really not an issue for most users, unless data records are subpoenaed or your iCloud account is hacked.
* If you use iCloud backup the files are stored in your iCloud backups
* Also, while Apple does encrypt iCloud data, they currently can decrypt iCloud backups. They have already said they plan to change this though.
V Pangu Jailbreak hack and Apple's "fix"
* Some who had used the hack reported unauthorized access to one or more of their Facebook, PayPal, or Credit and Debit accounts after applying the hack.
* It looks like the compromise might have come via a “PPHelper” tool which is provided by the Chinese company 25PP which hosted the Pangu Jailbreak files.
* Most of the hacks seems to come from Taiwan, Vietnam, Beijing, or other places in China. The US versions which were signed by a different method did not seem to be impacted
* The Pangu team completely denies any involvement in the hacks and most sources I've checked with trust them
* Apple released iOS 9.3.4 this week and un the notes say it fixes the “Panju Jailbreak exploit". That is more likely a reference to closing the holes which allow the Jailbreak, not protecting against the hack after applying the jailbreak.
V Phishing, seems to be the new way around some of Apple's security for hackers
V The Dutch site AppleTips reported that hackers are using compromised iCloud Accounts to lock devices remotely and send ransomeware messages. Obviously if this happened to you you could simply use the passcode to open your device and then change your iCloud password.
* You should be using 2-factor authentication
V Apple presented at the Black Hat security conference, an amazing bit of news in itself.
* Announced they would be offering bug bounties from $25,000 to $200,0000 for macOS or iOS exploits
* At first Apple is offering the bounties to a select group of security researchers starting in September, but they plan to expand the program over time.
* Apple is also giving the researchers the option to have any bounties they might earn donated to a charity they chose. And Apple, at their discretion, may match that contribution.
* Having more eyes, and with incentives, will help Apple hopefully find more exploits before the bad guys can find them.
V The next Apple Watch
* I'm still not sure I agree that it's coming this fall, but if it is here is the latest.
* DigiTimes is claiming a source at Apple's Apple Watch touch screen supplier told them that they ran into issues with production of "One Glass Solution" (OGS) OLED touch panels for the next Apple Watch resulting in lower yield rates.
* The current version of the watch uses a technology a "glass on glass" solution where there is a capacitive stack of materials using two pieces of glass
* Moving to a OGS would allow the Apple Watch 2 to be thinner or possible allow for a larger battery.
V Other rumors have been:
* A screen with better outdoor visibility
* Built-in GPS
* Built-in 3G cellular data capabilities.
V Apple Lightning EarPods
V A video hit the web calming to show off Apple's planned Lightning EarPods
* Looks like a fake to me. The connector looks too fat and too long.
* That said, Apple would maybe have to build in a DAC which could add to the size of the connector.
* If was followed up by a second video and images that look a bit more convincing, but that jack still looks big.
V [Gruber]( gives his theory on what will be "in the box", IF Apple ditches the Lightning connector
* He gives 5 options: wireless ear buds, wireless ear buds and an adapter, Lightning ear buds, Lightning ear buds and an adapter, the existing 3.5mm ear buds and an adapter.
* He hopes for wireless ear buds, doesn't think Apple will ship an adapter in the box, so
* I agree with the why no adapter logic, it makes Apple seems like they're admitting the 3.5mm jack is still needed by most buyers.
* In his mind Lightning Ear Pods would be OK, but anything with an adapter should be out. I don't disagree
V Even with a wired Lightning EarPod looking more and more likely there's still rumors about wireless
* Forbes reported that Apple has a project working on wireless earbuds that use a custom designed low-power Bluetooth chip
* The piece also notes that longer battery life is a key focus on the new wireless Earpods too using technology from Passif Semiconductor which Apple acquired in 2013.
* They say the buds have been in development for a "few years" and may be launched in September.
* All this said we often hear about Apple technologies and prototypes that never become actual products
* With the leaked Lightning Ear Pods I think that Apple might have been trying for wireless, but not been happy with the results.
* That or they are going to offer a wireless EarPod as a separate accessory.
V An iPhone of a different color?
* There have been a few rumors pointing to the iPhone 7 arriving in a new color choice that may or may not replace Space Grey.
V The two most talked about colors are a Space Black, like the Apple Watch, or a NEW Space Blue
* I'd personally love to see the Space Blue.
* This week a purported Space Black mute switch component surfaced.
V More confirmation this week that the iPhone 7 Plus will have 3GB of RAM (DigiTimes)
* KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has claimed twice that the 5.5-inch iPhone will have 3GB of RAM.
V Tim Cook says July was the best month ever for App Store developer payouts in a tweet
* He also tweeted that Apple has now paid a total of over $50 billion to developers.
* In the last earnings cll he had noted a 27 percent growth rate year over year for App Store revenue.
* He also noted that the average amount spent per customer reached the highest level the company has ever seen.
V Many were quick to point out, and maybe accurately, that the release of Pokemon Go might have shifted the July figures higher
* It was released in the US on July 5th.
* Estimates are that Apple could be earning $1.5 to 2 million or more a week just from Pokemon in app purchases.
V Parts and component leaks are becoming more prominent as we get closer to September when Apple's expected to have an event announcing the iPhone 7
* Mostly things are lining up with rumors we've covered previously
* Images from Sonny Dickson surfaced this week
* Design largely the same, but with the larger camera hole (iPhone 7) and dual lenses (iPhone 7 Plus)
* Smoother more integrated camera bump and still with a physical home button and no headphone jack an stereo speakers (or at least equal holes on each side of the Lightning port).
* There have been leaks show designs both with and without a Smart Connector (I think it will NOT have one).
V Now were are also beginning to hear the supply constraint rumors
* Analysts seems to think the iPhone 7 Plus may have the larger constraints
* Two reasons, higher demand for larger smartphone panels and the new dual lens camera component.
V Apple will certainly be looking to the iPhone 7 to help with it's sales numbers going into the end of the year.
* Apple has been relying on new models and emerging markets, most recently India, to keep iPhone money coming in.
* But India still seems to be a trouble spot for Apple due mostly to price sensitivity
* Strategy Analytics reported that iPhone sales fell 35 percent in India from 2015 to 2016. They put Apple's share of the market down from 4.5 percent last year to just 2.4 percent this year.
* In India Android now controls a whopping 97 percent of the indian mobile market.
* I personally think the iPhone 7 will sell well for Apple. I expect to see sales above what Apple saw for the iPhone 6s, but they will still see continued unit sales decline.
V Apple International news
* There were a number of short, but important, international Apple news items this week
V Apple added new versions of the Apple Smart Keyboards for iPad Pro with layouts for Arabic, British English and Italian
* available in both 9.7- and 12.9-inch sizes
V Apple Music has come to Israel
* Three mon th free trial
* Pricing is 19.90 ILS/mo. (USD $5.22) for individuals and 29.90 ILS (USD $7.85) for the Family plans.
* Apple Music is supported in over 110 countries and Korea is reportedly on the horizon.
V Molotov TV, a French alternative to Netflix, has come to Apple TV
* A freemium service
* The free service has 35 free-to-air channels with ten hours of on-demand viewing per month
* The paid service is €9.99/month and adds 37 premium channels with up to 100 hours of on-demand viewing.
V Apple next TV plan
V Recode is reporting that since Apple's plans for a skinny bundle TV service didn't work out that they are now talking to TV programmers and other video companies about creating a digital TV guide.
* They idea would be a built-in guide for Apple TV and Apple devices to let see, search, and play content from across multiple "channel" apps in a single click?
* Oh, you mean sort of like what Siri search is already doing on the Apple TV, now?
* Yes, I think, but on a bigger scale and with more apps.
* The report also seems to indicate that Apple may be giving up on plans to try and sell TV services and just focusing on the new interface for getting consumers to the content offered and sold by third parties.
* Apple's new single sign-on feature should help with consumers who have content from multiple TV provider apps.
* What Apple seems to be looking for more now is "data" from providers to make the searching work better.
V The trick of course will be Apple convincing content providers that their guide will help them which might be hard to do when they know about the discovery challenges of the Apple Store.
* If you're in the HBO app, then HBO can cross promote their other content to you.
V Apple this week also released a new Apple TV Remote app
* It replaces the "Remote" app they currently have and is a separate download for owners with the latest version of the Apple TV
* It's iPhone only
* Adds Siri capabilities and TV button (controls power)
V Sponsor: Gazelle
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V Feedback, commentary, opinions
V Can and iPad be your computer
* Apple released a great new iPad add this week
* The message, "Imagine what your computer could do if your computer was an iPad Pro"
* The ad does focus a bit on the accessories, pointing out the Smart Keyboard and Apple Pencil, both optional.
* That said, there is some debate if this is accurate. Can an iPad be a "computer"?
* I say emphatically, "YES"!
* Of course it's going to depending you your specific needs, but for most daily computing tasks an iPad can be your main or only computer.
V The main challenges tend to be local storage, helped that now you can get 256GB of storage in an iPad Pro, and sandboxing.
* There are now many Lightning and wireless based external storage solutions for iPads
* For some things you need to think more about your workflow and possibly need to change those.
V I can now use my iPad Pro to produce an entire show
* Cloud based automation can make the process easier/better.
* No, it won't work for everyone.
V Mac HomeKit automation in new house
* When Apple announced HomeKit a number of us got excited at the idea of a simple technology that would finally bring HomeAutomation to the rest of us.
* As you may know that vision of Apple home automation utopia is still a bit clouded.
* Kevin is building a new house and very interested in setting it up for home automation, and possibly HomeKit, right from the start, but had some questions.
* He basically wants to know where to start, what products to consider, and wants to know about security.
* Since I've only dipped my toe into this topic I decided to call in amy friend Ara from the [HDTV Podcast]( for some help on this one.
* [Indigo Home Automation](
V macOS Sierra Optimized Storage
* SSDs and Flash storage have big speed advantages, but almost anyone who has one knows the disadvantage over traditional HDDs. Storage size.
* In macOS Sierra Apple is adding a feature they claim will help with that, but at the WWDC announcement I had more questions than answers.
* The feature is called "Optimized Storage", found in 'About this Mac' > 'Storage' > "Details'
V There are several option in here and most are straight forward:
* Optimize Storage: Removes already watched TV shows and Movies automatically. Only keeps recent email attachments locally
* Erase Trash Automatically: Removes items in trash that are older than 30 days old.
* Reduce clutter: Exposes older files and documents so you can see where you can archive and clean up.
V The most baffling one to me though was "Store in iCloud"
* This offers to save space by storing all your files and photos in iCloud and on your Mac but then, when space is needed, it will remove older local files from the Mac, leaving them just in iCloud.
* OK. As a backup obsessed dude and one who has only minimal iCloud storage I have a LOT of questions.
V Luckily [iMore]( stepped in to help with a couple:
* First. While your Macs SSD is NOT full it only makes copies into iCloud. All files are also still stored locally.
* When it does need to start purging it begins with older files first.
* In addition the files are still referenced and indexed locally, so when you look at your Mac you still see everything and when you access a file that's only in the cloud it is re-downloaded locally. (doesn't address the I don't have cloud access right now issue").
* Files do NOT sync. Main way it's different than iCloud drive. You can't grab a file that was uploaded "Store in iCloud" on another Mac.
V Finally, and most important, according to iMore, because the "Store in iCloud" feature is not syncing it does NOT count against your iCloud Storage Plan
* I find this one a little hard to believe, but OK. Great!
V But I still have a myriad of OTHER unanswered questions:
V What is actually stored by "Store in iCloud". Apple says "all files and photos", but from where?
* The settings say all files from the 'Desktop' and 'Documents' Folders
* Photos and Videos are the ones in your iCloud Photo Library (seems to be the same setting)
* Also notes you can adjust the preferences for storage in System Preferences and Photos.
V What about my backups
* If it leaves a pointer to the files that are stored in iCloud what will by backups do?
* Will my files in my clone backups get overwritten with aliases? That would be bad.
* Obviously at this point my questions are rhetorical because macOS Sierra is not out, but it would be nice if Apple maybe gave us a bit more detail.
V Thing of the Moment:
* Found this through MacStories who found it via Six Colors
* A site that lists all the Siri commands that you can ask sorted into various categories
* You can also click on some command to see variations
* There are conversion and Math(s) commands
* It's a really handy guide
V At the same time it's existence shows the amount of work Apple still needs to do with Siri's AI.
* She needs a much better parsing and context engine.
V Honorable mention:
* [Sling TV](
* Watch the Olympics on Apple TV if you can't get over the air and have cut the cord.
* They have a $25/mo option that includes NBC and NBC Sports, for $5 more you can add on CNBC and MSNBC for more complete coverage
* The service is no contract, so cancel after the Olympics and you get a 7-day free trial.
V Closing
V Podcast Marketplace
V Thanks to my sponsors
* Smile
V Gazelle
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