MacBreak Weekly 424 (Transcript)
Leo Laporte: Time for MacBreak Weekly! Andy and Rene are here. We are going to talk about the big Apple event coming Thursday, what does it mean it's been way too long? Is it a new Mac, new Apple TV? We'll debate the options, we'll also talk about Johnny Ive's revelation that he's peeved at people stealing his designs and a whole lot more, stay tuned. MacBreak Weekly is next.
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Leo: This is MacBreak Weekly episode episode 424 recorded October, 14, 2014
It's all about the Macs
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Leo: It's time for MacBreak Weekly the show where we cover the big Mac news, the big Mac news, maybe there's going to be some big Mac news. Andy Ihnatko is here, oh I'm sorry. Isaac Asimov is here playing Andy Ihnatko on the show today. Good to see you today Mr. Asimov.
Andy Ihnatko: (singing) I don't care.
Leo: Do you have Asimovian sideburns as an homage?
Andy: No, I have these sideburns as my trying it out when I was like just after college and saying well this is a compromise between not having to shave at all in the morning and not having to shave completely in the morning.
Leo: So this way you don't have to make a decision one way or another.
Andy: It's like I can get away with one day of not shaving now because people get distracted by the other facial hair there. There's a method behind it.
Leo: There's a method to his madness ladies and gentlemen, and he writes for the Chicago Sun Times, and is an esteemed member of this panel. Also Rene Ritchie from iMore.com, he is also esteemed from Mont Royal.
Rene Ritchie: I have no big Mac news Leo, I ordered a quarter pounder today.
Leo: Ah, very nice. How do you say quarter pounder in French?
Rene: Mac Royale.
Leo: Mac Royale.
Rene: Here we just call them a quarter pounder.
Leo: Quarter pounder. I love the Royale. Wasn't that, yeah that was Pulp Fiction they went on and on about that.
Rene: Royale with cheese.
Leo: Royale with cheese. Anyway, welcome gentlemen nice to see you. Alex Lindsey has the day off, he's busy with Dream Force, the big sales force convention in this city that's always been a big client of his. Did you get invitations?
Rene: I did.
Leo: I got my hopes up, because the invitation said it's been way too long, I thought maybe they meant it's been way too long since Leo got an invitation to an Apple event, but nope. You didn't get one Andy?
Leo: I'm surprised.
Andy: It's not an entitlement.
Leo: No, it's not an entitlement. Absolutely. And the event which is the day after tomorrow, there's a lot of weirdness going on here. It's not a Tuesday, it's a Thursday is that unprecedented?
Rene: I can't remember one being on a Thursday.
Andy: Yeah exactly, I can't remember the last time that happened. Mondays, Tuesday, and Wednesdays are. I can't remember Thursday.
Leo: And then it's in town hall at Cupertino which is a tiny venue compared to the Flint center or Masconi West, only what a few hundred seats, like 350 seats I think
Andy: Yeah, but then again they did the 5S launch there too so.
Leo: Yeah, oh we've been to many an event there.
Andy: That wasn't a minor thing so.
Leo: No, and the nice thing is Apple kind of controls it.
Rene: They are streaming it this time, they didn't stream the 5S event.
Leo: You know, I think, didn't we talk last week that Apple almost has to stream it because not to do so would be to admit failure.
Rene: And they announced it early which they didn't do for the previous thing.
Leo: No, we will stream this one. No Chinese we promise. New team probably in place, I would guess. So what do you make of this invite, it's way too long? Mark Gurman pointed out on his Twitter feed that that is the 30th anniversary Macintosh logo, a small clip of it.
Leo: Except for the colors. The colors are all green on the 30th anniversary.
Rene: I think it was rainbow.
Leo: But green on the top.
Rene: Okay so yeah they re-rainbowized it.
Leo: They re-rainbowized it because if you're only going to show the top you have to make that a rainbow. So, that's one thought. Somebody was saying “Isn't that a finger pushing down into a squishy surface?” or could it be a book? Look it, we're really going out of control here reading the tea leaves. But I do think that's a very provocative tagline. It's been way too long. And I'm curious what you make of that, gentlemen.
Andy: Yeah. I would guess it's going to be a focus on Mac obviously. You've given stuff that they really have to roll out this year, if they're going to roll out new Macs at all. One thing that was in the back of my mind only perhaps because I want it to happen is that maybe they're going to make it okay to use their traditional color Apple logo again. Because remember the stickers commercial for the MacBook Air? I thought it was amazing that they actually depicted the traditional six color Apple logo for the first time in, oh how long was it?
Leo: Steve took it all white, when, about ten years ago right?
Andy: Yeah and it's been through some changes, because I've been looking at my old iPhone as it boot up and they've gone through the flat white icon, to the it's glossy white to it's chromed logo.
Leo: Yeah it's not white any more is it, it's shiny metal.
Rene: It is flat, yeah it's flattish. They had a version that was lickable with like the gumdrop.
Leo: Yeah but we've gotten rid of that.
Andy: So it would be cool if we saw not that we're going to see color logos on the devices any more but at least you know and to mark the 30th anniversary we're going to be re-introducing the Apple logo on select software and products. Or at least we'll let you buy a watch with a watch face with the color logo on it for you 90s nostalgists.
Leo: Here's Gurman's tweet.
Andy: If they give them out at the event, Rene, get me one please.
Leo: It's not exactly the same as the Moto.
Rene: Well some people think that it means they've returned to the colored Macs because we haven't had those since the heady days of blue Dalmatian and flower power.
Leo: Nilay Patel of The Verge was convinced it was Macs. I don't know, I disagreed with him only because well we would welcome a Mac event and we know they'll update the Macs but Apple's focus has really been on phones and iOS of late. We know that they'll be doing Yosemite in the next whatever. Now to like the 5th or the 6th beta, they're very close.
Rene: If they follow last year's pattern that will be the day of the event.
Leo: Right, we know iOS 8.1 is due to support Apple Pay.
Rene: And continuity yeah.
Leo: And continuity. So that it works with Yosemite. So that is probably going to be announced. Obviously iPads, they've got to announce iPads. You really think they would mix Macs into that?
Rene: They did last year, I mean last year they had Macs and iPhones sort of, for a while it was almost like there was an iPhone and iPod event and then a Mac and iPad event and last year in October they did the iPads and the Macs and it seems like that would fill, because the iPad updates are going to be significant but they're entered if it's touch ID and stuff like that so there seems like there is time, especially if you talk about Yosemite. And again, part of that is intel whether Broadwell is ready and maybe it's not. But it seems like there is time to get some acts up there.
Leo: I was hoping, and you've already said that it's not going to happen this year, that there would be a new Apple TV. An updated Apple TV.
Rene: Sounds like spring.
Leo: It has been way too long, that and the Mac mini are the two current Apple products that have not been updated for the longest amount of time and the TV is considerably longer than the mini.
Rene: It's a question of how often you have to update the TV and what new features are you bringing that require, like right now the Apple TV.
Leo: Home kit.
Rene: Yeah, home kit, well that can get updated with software, so can the new interface was on the existing Apple TV, if you're going to increase the hardware of the Apple TV, if you're going to put in a new chipset, because it's still running a single core A5, if you're going to put in a new chipset, if you're going to increase the storage, you're probably going to want to do something fun with it, and that could involve a game store or an app store, it could involve new partnerships.
Leo: I think an app store.
Rene: But that's all new hardware, and that new hardware is again sounding like next year.
Leo: Okay, okay. I'm going to go out on a limb with no evidence and of course a track record that is worse than Richard Nixon's, I'm going to go out on a limb, did he predict Macintoshes? I don't think so. I'm going to go out on a limb and say it's the new Apple TV with an app store and home kit.
Leo: Is that crazy talk? And 4k support.
Rene: It's not crazy, it's just…
Leo: They have to do the 4k support.
Andy: There is a planet much like our own in which Apple is indeed going to be announcing that in two days. It's not in which apes rule man, but I don't think it's our reality. I think you'd have to have a teleporter to get there.
Leo: And how about the 12 inch iPad Pro, who's calling it the iPad, USA today called it the iPad Maxi?
Rene: Max, they said iPad Max.
Andy: That's, no.
Leo: Are they drinking heavily there now?
Rene: He got to shoot inside an Apple store which I thought for a piece that would be speculating about an event was an unusual occurrence.
Rene: Because usually Apple doesn't want you in app stores. Apple stores.
Leo: I am not a Mac. Alright well. Alright, I mean I have no reason to think that, and you guys are much better connected and obviously Rene has good reason for saying next year, next year, next year, as you've said all along for a new Apple TV. I just see the market opportunity for a new Apple TV though.
Rene: It just sounds like that project has gotten more and more important, and as it's gotten more and more important the date for delivery, like if you want, as we've seen with all the software they're pushing out right now, I think a lot of us would rather they focus on one thing, knock it down and then go onto the next thing and not try to put even more stuff on the plate right now.
Andy: Yeah, and also as Rene said. The next time they do a big update to the Apple TV, it's not going to be “Hey guess what, now we've got ESPN 4 channel.”
Andy: It really is going to be is we are redefining the role of the Apple TV in the home and it is no longer just another box for streaming Netflix, and it's no longer just a box for Air play, this is going to be a game console that has parity with the iPad, this is going to be the hub for Home Kit. As the incredibly low powered iOS device, that can conceivably be on 24/7 and be there to monitor the health of your home network, your heating system, your lights and all that stuff. I really think that that's the next big announcement. It's tempting because if any one product in the Apple line really attracts the phrase “It's been too long.” like a magnet, it is the Apple TV because it has this really weird, now it looks like a really weird interface, it isn't quite relevant to what the Apple TV does right now, it's very very slow compared to every other box on the market, it's not as relevant as something like the Chromecast which costs a third as much. If there's one box, one thing in Apple's product line that really needs freshening up or cancellation it's the Apple TV, and they're not going to cancel it.
Leo: Thank you Andy.
Andy: You're welcome.
Leo: Why don't we have any leaks on this though? This is...
Rene: On what, the event?
Leo: Well yeah, we've got leaks on the iPads but what are they talking about, it's been way too long? That seems to be a great mystery and we haven't seen any leaks that would give us any hints.
Andy: That's always the case. It's always about speculation.
Leo: The speculation comes from the Broadwell chipset; that would imply macs.
Andy: Or maybe they're saying, you know how focused Apple is margins, maybe they've figured out that you know what, we can probably save half a cent if we decide to knock about 8” off of every power cord and every USB cord.
Leo: It's way too long!
Rene: Well the thing about it, that it's such a great tagline is because it could apply to so many things and it gets people talking. And again, the graphics department just gets these things and they put them together so it's hard to read too much into the design. But the tagline, someone actually has to think of those and put them on.
Leo: I think Tim Cook signs off on the tagline, right?
Rene: If not, then he certainly fills in Schiller, and I'm certain team Cook can veto it if he doesn't like it.
Leo: He signs off on it. I mean maybe it's Schiller coming in and saying “Hey Tim, what about this?” and Tim goes “Yeah!” and that's it.
Rene: Go go go!
Leo: Go! But you've got to know, I mean I would want to if I were him.
Rene: Well that's what we said about Johnny. Like he said, I guess ultimately the decision is mine but I trust the people that I work with, you know. And their specialties.
Leo: Right. Well yeah, you let them come up with it. You don't say “Hey guys, I've been thinking we should say it's way too long, what do you think?” No, you let them come up with some. Probably 4 boards and Tim went yeah I like that one. What's interesting is the last invitation had no semiotics, no clues, no hints. It was really straight. And this is a return, in fact maybe more than ever to this kind of wink wink, nudge nudge messaging.
Rene: Well it is thirty years. I mean, we had the 30th Mac anniversary and this is using the same logo and it is at least partially a Mac event and there are rumors of a new iMac and they were at the Flint center when they announced the Mac and the iMac, I mean it is a special year and Apple has been more nostalgic than they have in years previous.
Leo: Oh yeah, alright. I would love to see a new, I don't know, what would you want? The Mac Pro is a new Mac. I mean, we go the Mac Pro less than a year ago and I love it. People want a mini but I think that's a specialty market. Alex Lindsey notwithstanding. In our chatroom. That's a specialty market, that's not a big seller for Apple.
Rene: It's the iMac, I mean if the Retina and Macbook air really is delayed because of Broadwell then the iMac is the next big target, and the iMac can do things the other computers can't because it's integrated, they don't have to worry about dual link thunderbolts if they want to go to high definition, and the Mac had its redesign, it had that one where it went super thin. But it is their flagship, desktop computer and if they want to do something fun with that it's certainly in their purview.
Leo: I know, it could be Apple announcing they're coming back to Macworld Expo in January... oh never mind.
Rene: Ouch, too soon.
Andy: Too soon.
Leo: Really too soon. Sad to say that, well we kind of saw the writing on the wall when IDG, their parent company killed Macworld Magazine. The print version of Macworld Magazine. The announcement came out today that Macworld Expo is also shutting down. That's kind of sad. Paul Kent told Six Colors today, that's Jason Snell's new blog nice scoop Jason. Our Mac IT event, the world's premiere event for deploying Apple in the enterprise will continue next year, with details to be coming but we are announcing today Macworld, iWorld is going on hiatus and will not be taking place. Yeah, like. Hiatus. Like Firefly is on hiatus.
Rene: Well I mean, I had a chance to speak to Paul too, and it is sad because it's such a great, there are so many great memories from that show. The iPhone was introduced at that show, and I believe he's going to be on the Macworld podcast with Chris Green later today so he can at least get his view out. Mac IT is going to go on but it's like you said Leo, it's hard to find a place for these things in our new digital world.
Leo: All trade shows are suffering, and you know the last few years of Macworld iWorld have been smaller and smaller. And really it all began when Apple stopped coming.
Andy: Yeah, but that was the first push that kind of started the wobble. It's hard to maintain a huge huge show like this because the whole reason to hold a show like that is because you have the press attention, the world, and then the users attention and there are so many more efficient ways of doing that now. And it's not even so much that the market for shows has gone away so much as it's shifted. Macworld might be gone, but its place has been taken up by at least four, five, six, seven other shows that happened. One in Chicago, one in Portland, one in Boston, one in New York. For a narrower audience where it's not the build up where Adobe's going to have a booth, Microsoft's going to have a booth. It's going to be just a gathering about four, five, six hundred people who are going to pay a lot more money but have a more intense experience.
Leo: We have a great show here in Sonoma county. A great Mac show.
Rene: I was at Singleton this weekend and there's going to be Coco Love I think two weeks from now, and then there's going to be Yosemite conference and OOL and NS North and NS Con.
Leo: What is Singleton?
Rene: Singleton is the conference run by Luc Van'del, Guy English, Scott Morrisson. It's sort of like the old Wolf Rentzsch C4 conference, where it's developers media and just for the community and it's a single track so people...
Leo: Oh, nice.
Rene: There was one person on stage talking and there were great, great speakers this year. Including John August was the keynote speaker. And John Gruber closed off the show, because he had opened the original one. This was the last year for Singleton which was interesting because C4 lasted four years, Singleton has lasted four years, they're birthing up all of these new shows. Coco Love is going to have their first show in a couple of weeks and OOL is doing fantastic stuff in Ireland and there was one in Warsaw that they were talking about and it seems like maybe you can't get everyone to San Francisco any more once a year but you can bring shows to people all over the world.
Leo: Well and that's what Paul Kent was trying to do with MacWorld was make it a user show but that's not big enough probably for IDG. They wanted to be the Mac show, and obviously not one of many and that's really what it has become.
Andy: Yeah, it's been a bit of a wistful morning for me because I realized that the first MacWorld expos were in Boston and so from high school onward I have been, I think I went to my first one I'm trying to figure out whether it was '85 or '86.
Leo: The first one was in '85
Andy: It might have been the very first one, if not I definitely went to one in '86. Given that every single summer was set up okay, and the second week in August I'm going to be sweating my guts out walking in the desert wastelands between the World Trade Center and the Bay Side expo center in Boston, this is before Boston had any really good convention space. They had it split up between two different spaces, and everyone I know is coming and I'm going to be admitting everyone I know and it's going to be up for 20 hour days for four or five days a week and boy is it going to be great. And so I stopped going to iWorld expo about two or three years ago, but it's sort of like the playground set in the school you used to go to. You don't want to go on the swings any more but you're glad that they were still there.
Leo: Yeah. Oh I went to every one of them and it was such an exciting thing. We would go with our cameras, we did shows there. But even before then, I remember so well the excitement of going to MacWorld expo, and it would tie up San Francisco downtown. For days, four days there would be gridlock around the Mascone Center. I don't know, what was its biggest, at its peak. Here's an article from the San Francisco Chronicle from the 2007 MacWorld they said 40,000 enthusiasts strain traffic and parking. Is that probably the biggest one?
Rene: The iPhone event.
Leo: That was the iPhone event, yeah.
Rene: I met you and Andy the first time at MacWorld. And so many other people.
Leo: So many other people, absolutely.
Andy: That's one thing that we're missing. I mean Singleton is great, OOL is great, these regional shows are great but it's nice to have WWDC is the only opportunity that we have where there's a chance that everybody all over the world who has an interest in Apple is going to be converging on the same coordinates at the same date. Spacial coordinates as well. So you get those wonderful opportunities to meet someone you would not have met otherwise, and that's what really year after year kept me going back to MacWorld expo. Not only the keynote but the idea that I have no idea who I'm going to see, I had no idea what I'm going to discover there but I know that lots of stuff is going to be happening there and since the dissipation of the world's focus on one event a year it became just not a good payoff for any of these companies.
Leo: And then somebody in the chatroom is pointing Dave Z, Apple gets more traffic every day at an Apple store than at any MacWorld, right?
Andy: Yeah. And CES started doing the big pavilion with all the accessory vendors which was before CES and then they didn't want to do both.
Leo: Yeah. Well and accessories, I mean that's not a very interesting reason to get to go to a trade show to see.
Rene: No, but they payed for a lot of booths. And helped fund the show.
Leo: Oh yeah. Yeah there was money there. Anyway, sad to see. We will miss you MacWorld expo. But you know, the whole world is changing and I do hope Apple is going to do something to celebrate the Macintosh Thursday. We will be here 9:30 in the morning right after TNT. Mike, Sarah and I will host our coverage and if you'd like to join us since you're not coming out, you're more than welcome unless you want to watch the stream. And we will watch the stream, but what we do is of course comment as the stream goes by.
Andy: I should be available. After three or four days of walking around New York any excuse for sitting in my sofa and watching three screens is a good one.
Leo: Good. Good, and you know you can just kinda sit there watch the screen and... you could be the color guy, you know? You know how like on Monday Night Football they've got four guys and one guy says one thing every few hours. You could be that guy!
Andy: I'll be the retired linebacker who says “It's really going to be all about the defense. I believe it's going to be about the defense with this one.”
Leo: Exactly. You'll be that guy. (laughs)
Rene: Apple is so defensive.
Leo: A rainbow colored Mac mini says Berfunkel in our chatroom. I don't know, it would be nice to see. I don't know.
Leo: Fashion? I don't know... the iMac is a perfect, the problem Apple has and this is true with the iPad too, is they're pretty close to perfect.
Rene: Well that was the rumor for the Retina Macbook Air was that Apple was going to offer them as base gray silver and gold because they are becoming more fashionable and the line blurs between a big iPad and a very small Mac. But I don't know if you they would scale gold to an iMac just for fashion.
Leo: Yeah. A gold iMac might be a little much.
Andy: And there also ways you can improve the iPad still but you're right, the iMac right now they've got new case designs. I think the most radical thing they can do is to say “Guess what, if five years from now you start doing final cut and you want more storage, we'll let you put in more storage.”
Leo: Yeah, I don't see that.
Rene: Crazy talk.
Leo: I don't see that, I love the razor iMac. I have one on my desk. It's beautiful. And this is the problem the computer industry faces in general is that people are pretty much satisfied with what they've got.
Rene: The iPad industry too.
Andy: Yeah I can see that's a problem. I mean it took them two or three years to get everything spun up but across the other side of the office I actually took out my 2008 iMac essentially to use it as a screen sharing terminal for the computers in the house but I find that I'm actually using it for real stuff because those idiots at Apple built things to last and they build operating systems that work with previous systems and they don't necessarily require a lot of overhead in order to work. I mean, the new design iMac is a little bit controversial to me. I would love to see a new iMac where you could actually put in a memory card without having to turn the thing around at least 130 degrees. But at least it gives Apple an opportunity to show off their design chops and everything. Now that we are used to the fact that we are not going to get, even though it's a desktop we're not going to get expandability. The design might trump certain practical things or at least where the answer to that question is going to be well if you want a really accessible card slot, hey that's why we gave you so many USB 3.0 slots, you can actually put that slot wherever you want it to be. So at least maybe Apple will take this opportunity to really really throw us with an exciting new design.
Rene: And to Andy's point, because there was an article again repeated in the Huffington Post how Apple tries to force people to upgrade. They have family and friends who are using computers like Andy's and iPads like my mom uses an iPad too still, and they want all those to work for their family too which is why they are very good about supporting old hardware.
Leo: Alright. We will be here, live and Andy will be joining us from the couch. Thursday.
Andy: From the sofa of solitude.
Leo: I will stand up and cheer if there's a new Mac or something exciting. But I just can't think of what, a finger print reader? What does a Mac need?
Rene: 4k, 5k.
Andy: But think about how cool it was when they came out with the Mac Pro as their response to here's our top of the line.
Leo: I'm loving it.
Andy: Now imagine what they could do if they simply say we're going to throw out every single design queue that we thought was necessary for an iMac or a Mac mini. Let's just gravitate towards a shape that we like, that we would like to have on our desks and then we'll make it practical for sale. You can complain a little bit about some of the design choices, especially if you're the sort of person who really needs lots of drive bays. But you can't deny that man isn't it... just like Apple was excited about breaking free of the beige box syndrome with the iMac, now they're saying well we're going to give you something that doesn't look anything like a computer except for when you turn it on and you actually see how fast it goes. I would love to see Apple do something like that with a new iMac or especially a Mac mini.
Leo: The Mac pro is fashion forward, you'd have to agree.
Leo: So maybe they will. You know, I have one complaint. I have found one complaint after all this time with the Mac Pro which I love. Of course, I spent a huge amount of money on it and then added an SSD boot drive and all that stuff. But, okay so you know when you turn it, they made a big deal about this, the light comes on, all the things light up. You know what doesn't light up? The on/off switch. So I'm trying to find the on/off switch, everything is lit up except the one thing because the thing that was turned off, and I wanted to turn it on and I couldn't find it, so I had to turn on lights and look.
Andy: I'm so fascinated...
Leo: Why wouldn't they turn that on?? Why wouldn't that light up?
Andy: I'm so fascinated by some of these design choices. I'm testing out a humongous TV set, and it comes with this amazing remote control that's almost like a Nintendo controller, it's like a flattened egg and it has gyroscopes and can be used as like a 3D pointer, and the one thing they didn't put into it is how about backlighting some of the keys so that while I'm watching this movie on this humongous TV in the dark I'll be able to find out where the volume control is.
Andy: It's like, I will not fall back on that cheap, cheap, cheap comment. You know they should probably actually test it out before they ship it. Of course they test it out. But I would love to hear the conversation that said, no we really can't put a backlight on even the power key on this. And here's the reason why.
Leo: There's some reason. How about... I like this, you can do it with Android. A stick, a Mac mini stick. How small could you make a Mac mini. I guess you could make a Mac mini as small as an iPhone. What about a Mac mini HDMI stick?
Rene: Well if you wanted to be PCIA I think it's going to have to at least have the bus.
Andy: I think heat would be a problem because there is such an immense difference between a mobile processor and a desktop processor, and we're not just talking about how fast it is, or the bus. We're actually talking about how well can it dissipate heat, how well can it handle being ramped up and ramped down? It's something that... I just started talking to an engineer a couple weeks ago who's been working on this sort of thing. Realizing that gee I thought I knew next to nothing about the problems of chip design. Turns out I know just slightly more than less than nothing. I'm sorry, I'm trying to be too clever. It's like as little as you think you understand the problems that are involved in designing a CPU, unless you design CPUs you really do know nothing about what the problems are.
Our show today brought to you by our good friends at Audible.com. You guys need to help me out here because I have two credits and I want to buy something. I want to buy a book. Audible has 150,000 books. It is the ultimate in audio book store and I think back to when I first joined Audible in the year 2000. We've come so far. When I first joined they didn't have any sci-fi. Then they realized that was a problem because a lot of the older sci-fi hadn't been put on audio books, they had barely put them on paper. It was kind of a shoestring operation. So Audible created Audible frontiers to record all of the classic sci-fi. And so now you can really enjoy so much great stuff. Including the Asimov books on Audible.com. Mysteries, thrillers, self-development and business. Romance, kid’s stuff. They've got it all at Audible.com. Now, let me ask you, Andy. Because I need to, as I said, I can get two books. What should I...? Give me something to think about.
Andy: The next one in my queue, I haven't read it yet but I'm really fascinated by the topic is by Walter Isaacson. It's called The Innovators, how a group of hackers geniuses and geeks created the digital revolution. And on the cover of the book you have two people that most people recognize, Steve Jobs and Bill Gates. You have one person that many people will recognize that will be Mr. Turing, and then the woman at the very very top that you recognize chiefly because there are so few women who get any sort of notoriety for all of their contributions to technology and one of them is of course Lady Ada. And the theme of the book is not so much look at these four geniuses who shaped the world today, it's more like it tries to address the mythology that Steve Jobs smote the ground with his magic lightning rod and up from the ground smoked the Mac and the iPhone and the iPad. That it really is all about teams and bringing people together and building upon the work that other people did. This is why I get kind of weary when Android people say “Enjoy your big phone that Apple copied from Samsung.” Or “Enjoy this thing that you copied from the iPhone.” When really very few things come from a vacuum. There is always a universe of ideas coming around and people will take an idea and improve and improve it and do their own articulation of it, then that articulation inspires somebody else, if that works really well let's do something like that. So I've read a couple of reviews and a couple of interviews that made me hopeful that that's what the book is all about. In any event it's a topic that's very very interesting and I've already spent one of my credits. I have not listened to it yet but it's in my queue for my drive tomorrow.
Leo: I guess I really should read it, I mean it kind of is my business. So there's one pick. What we're going to do is we're going to set you up with a free book, how about that? Because we know many of you have been hearing these ads for years, and there are people there who have not joined Audible. I just want you to try it, maybe you're nervous because you don't know if listening to a book is the same as reading it. It's better, I think. Because you can listen when you can't read. Like driving a car on your commute or doing your dishes, or walking the dog, or at the gym on the treadmill. I listen all the time. And what's nice is I get to really do a lot of reading. I just started Whiskey Tango Foxtrot it's really great so far. Just finished The Book of Summers, took me a little while longer than the summer to read it. The Goldfinch 30 hours or something. There's so much fiction, non-fiction, history. I love the biographies on Audible.com. I got the book that you recommended some time ago about the history of Dutch Manhattan. I'm looking forward to that, can't wait to read that. I don't know, you know. I just love Audible. I don't know what else to say. If you go to Audible.com/macbreak you can sign up for the gold account. That's the book a month account. You know, we like to ease you into this. That means you pay nothing for the first 30 days. Your first book is free, you get to keep it even if you cancel. You also will get the daily digest of the New York Times or the Wall Street Journal every single day as part of your subscription. It's a really good deal, and free for the first 30 days so give it a try. Audible. How to shoot video that doesn't suck, I can see we're on your account Chad. That's great.
Chad: Sometimes I want to just go over to my library and be like “No, look at the books that I'm reading, because...”
Leo: You've got good taste.
Chad: Yeah, I'm right now reading the Freddie Mercury biography.
Leo: Ooh. I'd love to read that.
Chad: Which is really good. And then you were talking about Audible Frontiers. I've been getting into this series by R.A. Salvatore and all of these are Audible Frontier books. And so I've been really happy about.
Leo: I read a lot of his books with the kids, because he used to do young adult fiction.
Chad: Mhm, mhm.
Leo: So is this young adult or is this adult adult?
Chad: I don't think this would be sold in young adult, I think it would be sold in fantasy. But yeah, this is the Drizzt series. The Dark Elf Trilogy.
Leo: He's one of my favorites. I really loved reading those to the kids.
Chad: Really good.
Chad: And they do a great job. The voice actor is amazing, and now I'm into the Crystal Shard Trilogy as well.
Leo: Awesome. He's done quite a few books, Mr. Salvatore has.
Chad: He's written a whole lot of books.
Leo: Holy cow. Audible.com/macbreak get your first book free. We thank them so much for, gosh they have been supporting TWiT for years. And many other podcasts too. They're a great company. You were at Singleton, Rich Siegel was also at Singleton. He is the creator of BBEdit which is, even the Apple web page for years was written using BBEdit, it's a text editor. But it's just kind of the power tool for the Mac, I really like it. It has command line batch shell worksheets like the old Mac programmer's workshop, that's where I first used it, years, in the '80s writing software for the Mac. I loved that feature. But Rich has been doing this weird bifurcated distribution. Because the limitations in the Apple Mac store, he has two versions. One, the full version, you can download from his site. And the other on the app store, he made an announcement about that this week.
Rene: Yeah. And I should say, I'm a huge fan of BBEdit, every one of my reviews is written in BBEdit. Every one of my reviews is written in BBEdit because it's the only thing, like I try to throw those reviews in Google Docs and they choke and BBEdit handles them without a single hitch.
Leo: So great.
Rene: Amazing program.
Leo: Love it, yeah.
Rene: Yeah so he was one of the speakers at Singleton and he went through these slides and he was saying “We're going to bring BBEdit off the Mac app store. Now it's not because of Apple's policies, it's not because of the developer tools.” And he had slides explaining the problems with each of these things, so he had about four or five problems with Apple's policies, four or five problems with the developer tools, four or five problems with their constraints, things like sandboxing. And in the end he said it's none of these things, and everyone was expecting the punchline to be it's all of these things. But he said the reason that he was doing this was because of quality of life, and everyone just sort of scratched their heads for a second. But he said when you take all these things together, he writes BBEdit because he loves it. He wants to make an app, and he wants to enjoy that he's making the app, and all of these things contributed to it not being as fun. And he was very clear, like the Mac app store is great for some apps, it brings a lot of attention to them, but those are sort of... to paraphrase, he didn't use this word, but those are sort of popular apps and to take an app as long standing as BBEdit, or like Coda which was on the Mac app store until recently.
Leo: Panic, yeah.
Rene: Those apps to go back and retrofit them sandboxing and he was just explaining like how hard it is to get the tools to download and how many hoops you had to jump through, and he wanted to enjoy making BBEdit again. And he didn't condemn them, he was very, he made sure to say that, and he said I'm going to keep my eye on it, it's changed a lot in the last few years and if it changes enough that I can go back on there I'll absolutely go back on there. But for now, you're going to have to go to Barebones to get it.
Leo: Nice piece of software, go to Barebones and get it. It's got so much. For text editing, for word processing but also for programming, and you know. Shell commands, I really love the shell worksheets.
Rene: And I think people who would want BBEdit would be able to go and get it.
Rene: Like I think there's a certain class of apps where you need to make them front and center and BBEdit can stand on its own.
Leo: He really doesn't need, anything you know? BBEdit is design for people who use Git. If you can use Git, you can figure out how to download BBEdit.
Andy: You can git it.
Leo: You can git it. I'm sorry Andy, I stepped in.
Andy: No, no I was just going to say, I'm glad to see that he's making the quality of life issue because it really is cumulative effects of little tiny annoyances and a lot of these things that you would call annoyances are things that make the app store so attractive for so many people. I'm glad that somebody as prominent as Rich is able to say, look if you're a developer don't just assume you need the app store to make the decision that is best for you, your product, for your users. And in his case that was exactly right. It's BBEdit, let me add my own recommendation to the pile, I switched to a different app with great reluctance only because Scrivener was such a great tool for writing novels and writing books and writing long length things. Until then, for about ten years everything I wrote was in BBEdit. But who would have guessed jpeg eventually replaced gif, but nothing ever replaced the usefulness of the text file. As other formats have come along, the molecule of conversation of data between one computer or another is still text, and the files that create the software that we all rely on is still text and to this date there is just no better tool than BBEdit. So much so that almost nobody wants to go after BBEdit because almost every great piece of software development starts with the question well what does the current too, the most popular tool not do? And there are almost no answers for that when the greatest tool is BBEdit.
Leo: Barebones.com, and the current version is... I just got the update, 10.5 something.
Andy: 11 is coming soon.
Leo: Is it?
Andy: I've got to check my email but I believe a new beta has been in the works and might be coming out very quickly. And it's also not one of these things that lingers on the vine and requires prodding in order to update, there are always updates coming coming coming, I'm on the beta list and it's one of those great beta lists where I had to basically create another mailbox for it because there were just so many hey we're doing a .01 release right now, okay now we're doing another .01 after this. And it's never because hi yeah we discovered that it causes the glazing on any insulated windows to melt off so we're going to have an emergency update. No, it's like hey we've found a better way of doing this, or we found a more efficient way of doing this that's how we're doing it. It's always always being improved. It is one of the best apps you can get on the app store. Excuse me, not in the app store.
Rene: It's evolved from the early days of the Mac and going to carbon and going to Coco and going to the Mac app store, and he's just brought that entire app throughout the history of Mac.
Leo: Fifty bucks. There is a free version called TextWrangler. Everybody who uses a Mac should have TextWrangler on their Mac. I get mad when people I go and... I get mad.
Rene: Leo will come to your house.
Leo: I get mad. What you don't have TextWrangler? What is wrong with you? You should all have it.
Rene: Don't give them U2 albums, give them TextWrangler.
Leo: And it's free! It's free! But it's not on the app store. See here... moving right along. Got caught up with BBEdit. Walgreen's secret memo released accidentally says they're planning October 18th to launch Apple Pay. I imagine they're not alone. These are point of sale terminals that you would tap with your phone. I can't wait.
Leo: Does that mean that we're going to have kind of a general release of it this week?
Andy: If that's true, yeah. I mean if that's true yes. We've got an event on Thursday, we're pretty much expecting that Apple's going to be dropping the rest of their shoes on that date. And it's a trendy document so who knows if they're going to hold it, but they've always been saying sometime between the 17th and the 23rd I think?
Leo: Yeah. That makes sense, Saturday's the 18th. That's a big shopping day, so. I would actually go to Walgreen's to buy something just so I could go... (waves phone.)
Rene: You'd go through the McDonald's drive through just to use it.
Andy: That makes me think though, if I were a big retailer like that and I knew that I have this new tap to pay service that's going to be on the most popular phone of the year, certainly, as an individual model, I would want that to roll out on the slowest day of the week, maybe a Tuesday.
Leo: They've very confident.
Andy: Because there are going to be all kinds of people that are like... Hi, what's the cheapest thing you have? This pack of gum? Great. Now... okay... wait, hang on. Wait. Hang on. Okay do I tap? Now? Now do I tap? Meanwhile there's people who need insulin behind them like yeah can I just give you cash for this? Because my grandma is jittering and yeah. It might be a bad day to be in Walgreen's to try to buy a bottle of Gatorade on Saturday is what I'm saying.
Leo: Yes. I'm going. This is, to me, like waiting in line for the iPhone.
Andy: Yes, yes. No, you should do that. You should have a live cam you should be the first in line, camp out in front of Walgreen's, be the first person to buy something.
Leo: Black Friday at Best Buy, this is it. This is the big time.
Rene: Yeah a Black Friday release would be fantastic.
Leo: Oh yeah, that's really... well that's probably why they're doing it now, right? They want to get it out before then. Johnny Ive says those guys at Samsung, they're just thieves. And then of course everybody on Google Plus said “Oh Johnny?” Oh Johnny?” He said look we work really really hard to do a new iPhone, this is a Vanity Fair interview. We do work really really hard, for years to make that iPhone, and then months later somebody does an exact copy. I don't see it as flattery. I actually see it as theft. By the way, no one stole his first design for the iPhone, which you're seeing on the screen right now.
Rene: That's a prevalent sentiment at Apple. Because there's a lot of engineers and directors and managers that didn't spend time with their family for years and went they through iteration after iteration and it took them two years to get from project purple to get to the first iPhone and all the apps, and they feel like that gave everyone else a shortcut. Whether that's a justifiable feeling, that's the general sort of feeling they have.
Leo: He was asked about Xiaomi, the Chinese firm which not only copies Apple's phones, but their CEO wears black turtlenecks, and says one more thing on stage. He said, let's see... what did he say about that? Maybe he was just asked about that.
Rene: Well there's also a question of scale, like there are elements that you can copy and certainly Apple brings things like the notification center, but for a while Samsung was literally making a USB cable look like a dock cable and that was probably just tweaking them enough they started they started to develop a bit of a scarb.
Leo: We should point out that Apple has lifted its share of ideas from other platforms. Including Android.
Andy: Yeah, I mean this is why I respect when a real designer like Johnny Ive or any other industry insider talks about theft like that, that's something you have to listen to. It's when other commentators are going to again, oh well Samsung has never created anything, they just watch what Apple does and copy it. You can really also go into Apple and say the click wheel for the iPod, okay that's nice. But there was a Bang & Olufsen phone that had the exact same click wheel and t hen, it's boring and unnecessary to demand that every new piece of technology passes some sort of purity test that you yourself have devised before you say can say that no this is something that has not been stolen from someplace else because it's an interesting debate, it can be a very long debate but it's a debate that's best done on a stage like that in front of a thousand people with three or four real designers. For the rest of us, it really is just bzz bzz bzz. Clicks pops and buzzes when we could be talking about things that are better or actually functional and interesting.
Leo: Everybody stands on the shoulders of others, no one works in a vacuum.
Andy: And there is such a thing as copying, but I don't even think that's necessarily a bad thing. I would hate to live in a world in which the first person to get a touch screen phone out there gets to be the only company that does touch screen phones.
Rene: Well there is a definite benefit to consistency for the users. It's a consumer advantage for us to know how to use new devices when we get them.
Andy: Right, and I don't think that anybody can argue that there has been a huge benefit to the fact that the iPhone is the expression of Apple's philosophy of product design, interface design and what a multi-touch phone should represent in a person's day to day life. I'm glad that Samsung gets to have their own form of expression, that LG, that even the Nokia gets to have their forms of expression, otherwise if we have one company whose only design is you know what, maybe a card slot would be useful but we don't think it would be that useful and that would get in the way of making a super super super slim phone. Well that's fine, unless you're the only company who are making these phones. What a terrible world it would be if the only person who could ever make an idea are the first people to make a certain idea.
Leo: Yeah, I mean you could go back and forth and it's more about scoring points than about celebrating great design saying you know, be original. You can't design in a vacuum because then you get something like that first iPhone. It's like, nobody would know how to use it because there's nothing, no reference.
Andy: Actually I think that a lot of industrial design is that you see, especially in demonstrations like that they're what you might call couture design.
Andy: Where they're never designed to actually be sold to regular people. This is hey we're inside the lab, we can design anything, let's just express some ideas that we like. But if there's one message that I'd like to send to people, again Apple fans, Android fans, all these other fans, it's like whoever it is you're trying to impress, you know Tim Cook is not going to read your Tumblr blog and then write you a letter with a free iPhone saying “God bless you for understanding us and defending us.” You know, it's not that important.
Rene: Yeah. I forget if it was John Siracusa or not, but he was saying I think it was John, he said that you know in fashion you can't copyright a shirt. You can't trademark a shirt, or a pair of pants.
Leo: That's why there are knockoffs. Yeah.
Rene: And everyone puts their logo on it because you can trademark a logo, which is why some phones have big logos on you know? Because those are identifiable and branding. And if it is a big black slab, that's you'll want it known for. And Apple makes these devices and deliberately doesn't put a lot of branding on them so for them their identity gets very tightly interwoven with their design aesthetic.
Leo: I do like what Johnny said when he was talking about working with Steve Jobs. He said “Steve was the most focused person I've met in my life, it's terrifying that when you really truly focus it seems a bit illegal, you can achieve so much. What focus means is saying no with every bone in your body to something you know is a good idea but you say no because you're focused on something else. I remember talking to Steve and asking why he was perceived as harsh. And I said to Steve 'Couldn't we be more moderate?' He said 'Why?' I said 'Because I care about the team.' He said 'No Johnny, you're just really vain. You just want people to like you. I'm surprised at you, because I thought you really held the work up as the most important and not how you're perceived by people.'” It's an interesting point of view. People misunderstand Steve because he was so focused, says Johnny Ive.
Rene: It was a great story and I forget who it was with but someone was talking with Steve Jobs about this great business that Apple could get into and how much money they would make Steve Jobs' response was yes we could do that and yes we could make this money, but is that really a business Apple wants to be in? I don't think so.
Leo: Yeah, yeah. I say that all the time. I think that if you're in business, if you don't or anything, you become scattered. You have to kind of make a beeline for your values and your vision and your goal. And the most successful business do that.
Rene: Well you say that but Google's now competing with almost everyone in tech. They have Amazon businesses and Apple businesses and Microsoft businesses.
Leo: Well they have a different structure. I think this is intentional on Google's part because they want to continue to innovate and so what they do is they make every little division be like a startup. It's almost autonomous. And its own teams, and they even internally want the teams to compete a little bit for attention and resources and marketing. And so I think that's an intentional goal and what they're trying to do is stay innovative. It's the innovators dilemma they're trying to avoid. It's a reasonable philosophy, it's a reasonable point of view.
Andy: Yeah. I love the dynamic between, it's not just one company's doing something right or another company's doing things wrong, it's that each one has their own philosophy that really permeates almost every office of that campus and I do think that Google's philosophy is that they are like a universe. Physics is not their one product, they are a compound in which lots of different people are pursuing lots and lots of different kinds of research, and the football program is going to be making lots and lots of money and that's why that's where all of the logos are in the gift shop but there's also somebody in some room somewhere that's pursuing an experiment that is absolutely daft but they've got enough money that hey let's find out daft this is, and there's a good chance, at least a non-zero chance that it will work out correctly. So that's why you get some half baked ideas from Google that develop into really good ideas and Apple has a lower, takes fewer shots at the basket but kind of sink more baskets. Neither procedure is really right, but I'm glad that there are different companies pursuing different philosophies like that.
Leo: Our show today brought to you by SquareSpace.com, there's a company that has a very concrete vision for what they want to be. That is the best web hosting and the best content management system, melded into one great product that will make a better website for you and everyone else. And I think SquareSpace is remarkable in how they pursue that vision. Better websites for all, visit SquareSpace.com, click the 'get started' button. For two weeks you can use it, you don't have to give them a credit card or anything. Just set up a site, you'll start with 25 beautiful template. Every template is e-commerce ready. Every template is mobile responsive. What they do is they give you the foundation for your website that is state of the art. And by doing the hosting and the software like this, they can keep it state of the art. In fact they just released their seventh version of the SquareSpace platform. SquareSpace 7. Because the web moves fast, but you don't have to worry about that, in fact you can move your content from one template to the other without any issues. Are these the new 7 templates? What are these, Chad? These are beautiful, I don't know what they are. They're new aren't they?
Chad: I've never seen this one before.
Leo: This is the great thing, you should go to SquareSpace.com all the time because you never know what you're going to see. They have the best engineers there, and by the way when you get support from SquareSpace you're getting it directly from the engineers. They've never outsourced their support. Live chat and email support, 24/7. They also have a great customer help portal so you can get self help articles, video workshops, forums, it's really... it's state of the art. Starts at $8 a month, which includes a free domain name when you sign up for a year. They have great apps too, the SquareSpace metric app for iPhone and iPad, let's you check things like social media, follows, page views, unique visitors. A blog app that makes it easy to post from your iPhone or iPad, they have the logo creator on site. Which makes it easy for you to create a logo, they use all the Google fonts. You have literally more than 300 fonts available to you to use. And of course the best hosting that just never goes down. I want you to try it right now, two weeks free no credit card required, if you do decide to buy a site, by the way if you do a temp site, a two week site and you want to continue it, it just continues on. I like that. The udon version, that makes me hungry just looking at that.
Andy: Or if you want to get into knitting.
Leo: You know what, that looks like the little TWiT guy only he ate some bad burrito and he fell over. Or something. Became a little swollen.
Andy: He's been left at the doorstep at the orphanage to be raised by kindly nuns.
Leo: Ohh. SquareSpace use the offer code MacBreak to get 10% off when you buy. MacBreak the offer code. A better web awaits, starts with your brand new site at SquareSpace.com. The little guy's eating an apple somebody said. I'm sorry, I didn't understand this. See I am in the public beta. So I got Yosemite public beta 5 but others, I guess developers, are getting the gold master 2.
Rene: Three just went out four days ago, I don't remember the exact day.
Leo: Is that the same as seed beta 5?
Leo: So you're getting something different than I'm getting.
Rene: And I think the public beta was updated again after the gold master 3 came out.
Leo: Wow. So golden master in earlier times meant this is it, we're done. Unless there's a showstopper.
Rene: Well they were preemptive because when the first one came out it was gold master release candidate 1.
Leo: Ah, it was a candidate.
Rene: Yes, so this is release candidate 3.
Leo: Okay. Gold master 3.
Rene: Lots of moving pieces Leo.
Leo: There's nothing to read into this. It just means they're getting closer and closer.
Rene: I mean, I am much happier they're doing this than me having to worry about anything going wrong.
Leo: Oh yeah. I don't want a showstopper. Second beta of iOS 8.1 also out, and I think Apple's learned from 8.01 that you better check that pretty carefully too. How did that happen? I mean weren't lots of developers using 8.0.1? I mean why didn't anybody know that this was going to kill the LTE.
Rene: 8.0.1 wasn't the release to the developers, it was a bug fix update for the week before issued iOS 8, and it did go to carriers I believe but it didn't affect everyone, it only affected people who did the differential update on the iPhone 6, so there were 10,000,000 iPhone 6s on the market and about 40,000 people got affected which was a huge number.
Leo: Is that all??
Leo: Oh. Now was it universal?
Rene: No, I'm not quite exactly sure, but a certain criteria had to be hit for you to have the problem. And they pulled it within an hour which also mitigated the problem. Some people could still get it, because CDNs are funny that way. But a lot of people they stopped it almost immediately so it was really contained.
Leo: Well I was lucky because Jeff Needles in our office had installed it and he said stop! Don't do it, I just lost touchID and LTE.
Leo: So I was lucky.
Rene: And sometimes there are processes, sometimes those processes break down, but I'm willing to bet that the same thing that happened with the CDN at the iPhone event happened when that process broke down and it's not going to happen again.
Leo: Not going to happen again!
Leo: But we should clear some space on your phone, especially if you have a 16 gig phone.
Rene: They're still selling 8 gig iPhone 5Cs, and they were selling iPhone 4s with 8 gigs in the BRIC countries, India and China, until...
Leo: Is that enough? You probably can't even update it with an 8 gig.
Rene: I think you have 5GB left after the operating system with that. These are sold in countries where people can get just like a Blackberry messenger plan or a Facebook messenger plan. And they use them as their principal form of communications, but it's got a camera on it and people are going to to take pictures. Likely Apple is as painfully aware of this as we are now. For example, Google Chrome does streaming updates now, the new bits just come down all the time and you don't really have to worry about the space and I'm guessing people are trying to figure out how to do something more like, it's also... iOS 8 was a fundamentally... they changed so many things. They rewrote so many things.
Leo: How much free space did you have to have?
Rene: 5 gigs.
Leo: 5 gigs. That's an awful lot.
Rene: Well you had to download it, you had to decompress it and you had to have room to move files around while you were updating it.
Leo: Golly. Do we think 8.1 will be like that? No.
Leo: Because it can be a delta.
Rene: Well they're all deltas if you do it on devices, it's just that delta was really big.
Leo: Big delta. I got a giant delta. Carl Icahn says Apple is dramatically undervalued in an open letter to Tim Cook. Tim Cook says, we're buying back stock like crazy, what are you nuts? It says Apple says we're executing the largest return in shareholder value in the history of the world. Icahn says you've got to accelerate the repurchasing. You've got to remember, Icahn is... he doesn't have any of our interests at heart. He's just a militant investor. Apple's response to Icahn was like this. Quote: “We always appreciate hearing from our shareholders. This is in response to an open letter. Since 2013 we've been aggressively executing the largest capital return program in corporate history. As we've said before, we will review the program annually and take into account the input from all our shareholders. Thank you, Carl.”
Andy: Even the batspit crazy ones.
Rene: You may sit down now sir.
Leo: They have returned $74 billion to shareholders. That's on the way to a $130 billion by the end of this year.
Rene: A lot of zeroes.
Leo: But I think Carl just says “But I see there's more.” I'd like some more. Please sir, can I have some more? What do you think, I'd like your opinion on this GT Sapphire business. The Sapphire Company built a plant in Mesa, Arizona to make Sapphire we think for the iPhone. Now chapter 11 and they say we're going to close the Mesa plant and they've started in their own defense releasing documents about their relationship with Apple. They blame Apple. I think you could reasonably say that Apple might blame them, that GT Advance Technologies had a deal to produce a certain product, the product didn't work or was too expensive for whatever reason, so Apple said well we can't use it. One of the things we've learned about the Sapphire is that the Supplier
Contracts to Apple's suppliers including GT Advanced Technologies have a $50 million penalty per occurrence if any information about an upcoming unannounced product leaks out. $50 million... Wow, that shows you the power though of an Apple supplier contract I mean, they're willing to sign these deals because they figure they're going to make a lot of money on it. GT Advanced in the bankruptcy filing noted that even the confidentiality agreement between the two companies is identified as confidential. Oh by the way, the confidentiality agreement, that's confidential too. Yeah and the fact that it's confidential is confidential.
Andy: Unless your lawyer gets on the DA, you can't get legal consult on this. You'll just have to-
Leo: Apple made a $578 million deal with GTA for Sapphire, they have them the capital to buy the supplies. What do you think happened? Apple designed and built the facility.....
Rene: I can only liken it to when I signed my first agreement to buy a house. Like my first mortgage, when you have that- You know it's a deal, you know what a mortgage is and then all of a sudden you have to sign it, and all of a sudden all of those numbers become very real and there's a moment of panic. Because you know, those Apple deals are huge. But the deliveries and penalties and everything are equally huge and from reading what they're saying, the way they're phrasing it, how onerous the deal was. That they went into this seeing numbers and then got very afraid and tried to look for any way they could to get out of it.
Leo: Yeah, the Walstreet Journal has filed with the bankruptcy court to release all of the documents, so we shall see. As is often the case with these court cases, the stuff then becomes public information and suddenly we learn a lot - Like a $50 million penalty for-
Rene: Yeah, so do they get fined if the stuff is released and the information is made available through the courts? I mean, it's so nebulous to me.
Leo: I don't think they could be fined for that, right, because it's not their fault.
Rene: Well one of the articles I read said they were panicked and were requesting that the court seal things because they were afraid that it would violate their agreements.
Leo: Wow... Also reportedly, Apple withheld $139 million payment to GT Advanced ahead of bankruptcy filings. Apple says, we were surprised they were filing for bankruptcy. The suspicion is that GT did not meet Apple's tech specs and that's why Apple had to bail on them so I'm not sure who's at fault.
Rene: Well they did announce Sapphire for the watch- So you know, they do intend to ship products that use Sapphire glass and they probably intended to use some of these facilities to do that so I'm sure Apple's not happy about it either.
Leo: The Journal reports, "Apple did not make a final $139 million prepayment loan because GT did not meet the technical milestones laid out by Apple," people familiar with the matter said. It's kind of an ugly mess...
Rene: That's one of the problems with living- As much as Apple is conservative of things like radio technology, they are not conservative of other things and they really are at the bleeding edge of some technologies. And you wonder how many of them- Because we've seen some of them, publicly not work. -But you always wonder how many of their other ones are just, "Not this year, folks. Sorry."
Leo: Right. And by the way, apparently the CEO of GT sold a bunch of stock right before the b; bankruptcy disclosure which is, kind of a no-no. He said, it was all planned ahead of time.
Rene: It was planned two days before I...
Leo: I planned it, yeah that's the ticket. Does Apple have an obligation not to bankrupt companies by promising them the world? I just feel bad for the employees, frankly.
Rene: I've heard about this with like where you'll get like a tremendously big order and if you hit it your fortunes are made but if you miss it, well that's it for you.
Leo: Yeah it's like shooting the moon. Chinese carriers took 1 million pre-orders for the iPhone and the iPhone 6 in the first 6 hours of availability. Still a pretty good demand in China for the iPhone, it's there. It's hot, hot, hot. Sales begin Friday. 1 million is less than- What, US was like 1 million in the first three days or something like that?
Rene: Yeah, including pre-orders. I read an article that said the pre-orders were much higher, but I think it still does highlight the two China's. Like, they're the China where they want to go for the cheap Android phone and there's the China where a large iPhone that is the color gold is absolutely a sign of affluence and you'd think that there's not a large upper-class in China but the size of China as a population divided by that percentage is a lot of customers.
Leo: Right, that's exactly it.
Andy: Well, but that's true everywhere. I mean, you'll get one perspective on the phone market if you just hang out at certain bars in San Francisco and you'll get a very different view of the phone market if you hang out at a bus stop in almost every other city. It's-
Leo: Every country has it's 1%.
Andy: Not only that but every country has different people who have different needs, for whom even a subsidized phone that costs $199 is not going to be the same value for them as it would be for someone else. Sometimes they really do want that $49 track phone that they can buy and put minutes on as they go so China is a complicated market. I think that we also ignore that even the United States is not a country where everybody should be getting an iPhone. Because goodness, it's only the best phone out there, only $199. Unfortunately, it's not going to attract a great number of people who need phones these days.
Leo: Sure. What is 1% of a billion people? That's 10 million people.
Rene: Plus also, when you hear market share reports and you realize that Apple has 0% share of the under $400 phone market, it changes those numbers. And up until 3 weeks ago, Apple had 0% share of the over 4" phone market. All of those, in most industries like automotive or any other long-standing industry, all of that is carefully taken into the picture. Whereas, smart phones and phones in general are still immature enough that we just get, oh this percentage share and we think that it means everything.
Andy: Yeah, and see- I'm sorry to get back to the same point but... -I think there's so much time wasted on points that have absolutely no relevance to anybody who's not investing 10's of thousands, if not 100's of thousands of dollars in tech companies. Because when I do my morning blog feed and check out all of my different blogs and news sites- The things that make my eyes roll are when somebody wants to say, 'oh well you know month to month, the iPhone 5s sales over the past two quarters were over 4% lower than relevant sales for an HTC One phone over the same quarter...' It's like, and this means what to whom? It means nothing to anybody. Again, if you're trying to move 100's of thousands or millions of dollars of your own money around based on stock performance, then yes I suppose that is relevant to you. But even then, you're going to have to take those numbers with a grain of salt because they're like poll figures. It's not a question of what the number is, it's the question of what is the math that led to that number and is that math valid? Otherwise, don't try to look for numbers to try to enhance your view on a product you're already happy with or unhappy with. The fact that Apple is outselling somebody will not make you happier with your iPhone 6 than you are right now. The fact that Samsung is doing better than the iPhone that doesn't mean that your iPhone 6 is not as good as it is right now. I think that's going to be an increasingly important message as those people that just want to show you that graph and want you to compare the red line to the blue line because you're the red line and you don't want the blue line people home
Leo: Wait, let's go back to the tote board. The numbers have been updated and apparently, according to 10cent, Chinese consumers pre-ordered 20 million iPhone 6 and 6+ smartphones in the first weekend. I think I misread the tote board there, so updated figures now, wow.
Andy: The first article was in the first six hours.
Leo: Right, they got busy. They woke up.
Andy: It's still a dazzlingly high number. Every time I check on sales statistics for the iPhone 6 just for background- And I find out, oh they sold half of a billion phones at this point, that's not a low number of phones to have sold.
Rene: I'll take half of that in cash.
Leo: Apple has removed all Bose products from it's stores. Goodbye...
Rene: Bose removed all of its Beats products from the NFL. Well not all of them. Apparently Coleen Krapnick and Richard Sheraman who are still wearing their., because they can afford to.
Rene: But that's the most interesting thing because you have players who have their own deals and networks who leave out their own deals and where-
Leo: Right, Kapernick has a deal with Beats to be wearing those headphones. He got fined $10,000 for wearing them at a post-game press conference against his contract that said he couldn't wear them within 90 minutes of- He had to wear his beautiful Bose headphones.
Andy: Can I ask, how much money do these people make and why do they need to supplement their income with these extra deals? It's like, oh my God I can barely make it on my $8 million a year, I need to get another $900,000 by making sure that I'm wearing my Beats headphones on the bench.
Rene: What was interesting to me- Because I had the good fortune of being with Jason Snell and John Gruber who know, I know nothing about sports and they know lots about sports. -They were saying in football, there's no guarantee contract so if they're injured, they don't get paid. So those sorts of deals help them make money in case they are injured.
Leo: Plus, your playing life is pretty short in many cases. Just a few years, so you've got to make it while you can. That's why so many pro football players own car dealerships.
Rene: They take this pile of money and put it on that pile of money.
Leo: He did get fined, he got fined $10,000 but then he was asked by reporters, who paid the fine and Cap said, I'd prefer not to talk about that, which pretty much means that Beats paid the fine.
Andy: Because if I say the word Beats again I'll be fined another $5,000 so I can't tell you who paid the fine for me.
Rene: My friend, a hip hop legend took care of that for me.
Leo: Yeah, Mr. Dre. Let's take a break and when we come back, your picks of the week my friends. Ready them, I am desperate for a snack so that's why I'm rushing ahead to our Nature Box ad. I love my Nature Box, so do our employees. Nature Box are delicious snacks delivered to your door every month in a box- There's even a business plan for businesses, which we will start using because I think we had like 15 Nature Boxes a month at the last count. But they're so good. There are hundreds of delicious snacks, look at this; tart and tangy fruit medley dried cranberries and apple bits, praline pumpkin seeds, pistachio power clusters nut squares with almonds, cashews and pistachios. All of these have 0 high fructose corn syrups, 0 trans fats, no artificial flavors, no artificial colors, they're nutritionist approved. Instead of going to the snack machine when you start losing energy in the middle of the day, go to the Nature Box. You'll even find snacks for Vegans. There are snacks with no sugar, gluten-free snacks there's a choice for everybody. So this afternoon when you're hungry, do what I do: Grab an apple cinnamon crave or Sriracha roasted cashews. Spicy! Or a cranberry macaroon granola, I had that one for breakfast. So good and so much better than any other snack option out there. Look, I want you to try it. Nature Box is giving you a chance to get a free trial box of their most popular snacks right now, just go to naturebox.com/twit. This is a new offer. What is this flax fortune cookies, mini cookies with flax seeds ooh yum. So that's healthy and delicious. So that's Nature Box, I can't decide which one to open.
Rene: All of them.
Leo: Yeah, I know I should. They are resealable you know with the little Ziploc things. And there are hundreds; savory, sweet and spicy. I think I'll have the savory power clusters. Naturebox.com/twit, we thank them so much for supporting MacBreak Weekly. Rene Ritchie what's your pick your pick of the week this week?
Rene: I just wanted to say for Nature Box, that you guys were kind enough to send me one of those and it was so much better than the exactly the same orange or green colored food that I get at the corner store all of the time, which is boring and old and stale. So yay, Nature Box.
Leo: Yeah, we keep up a general list and there may be more coming your way.
Rene: One of the main problems people are having with these ginormous 6+ phones- Because they are so huge. -Is typing one-handed and you know, this really is a hand-and-a-halffer phone. It's not ideal for one-handed use, it's almost impossible for one-handed use. But someone has now made a one-handed keyboard, it's name is even One-Handed Keyboard and it puts all of the keys on one side and if you want it to switch sides you just tap the arrow and it'll go to the other side. So it's right and left-handed-friendly, or specifically task friendly. And it basically puts all of the keys back where they were on the smaller iPhone so you don't have to reach all the way over to hit the Q or hit the W. It's pretty close to where you are and it's kind of awkward to use at first- Because I've gotten used to the wide Cadillac of keyboards that you get on the iPhone 6+. -But when you are walking and have coffee or something else you're holding and it's an emergency text or Twitter situation, the keyboard is right where you want it. It's right where your thumb needs it and it's right where Apple told us for years, the optimal distance for a thumb-friendly keyboard would be. There are still issues with installing keyboards, you have to go to the keyboard to keyboard. But once you've done that it's in your little stack with all of your other keyboards. It's really easy, you just hit the globe icon, switch to it, type one-handed, and you go. I've been using it all day and it's been really good so far.
Leo: Have you found difficulties using third-party keyboards?
Rene: There's a couple of things, like with all extensibility it's version 1.0, so this is the worst extensibility that's ever going to ship. So there are some issues, there are limits to the size, there's limits to what the can do in the extension, versus what they have to call home. Like this keyboard, in order to switch colors you have to allow full-access because all of that functionality doesn't fit in the extension it fits in the apps so you have to do that. And there was some with the keyboards reverting and Apple has security issues where they don't want it in password fields or the phone pad or other things. So it's not a perfect seamless experience, ostensibly that's to protect us from ourselves, which people have varying views on but that's a matter of opinion. But they're working much better, for me at least on 8.1 beta so hopefully everyone will enjoy that.
Leo: I did something somebody told me because I was complaining about the fact that when you go to password fields, I have to go back to the keyboard I don't like and that's really the main reason I don't like it is because my passwords have upper and lower-case etc., and they said well just remove the Apple keyboard from the choices. And I don't know if this is related but now when I do a Spotlight search, I have no keyboard. No keyboard pops up, and I feel like I may have broken it and it's my fault I broke it. All you have to do is go to Keyboards and you can remove any keyboard just by hitting the edit key, including the English keyboard.
Rene: Yeah, it's a work-around but it's not a painless one.
Leo: Yeah, I look forward in the day when I can use third-party keyboards.
Rene: Yeah but they're getting better and are going to continue getting better. They've got a really good team working on it.
Leo: They've got a really good team working on it. Andrew Ihnatko is working on CraneCam 3000, the future of video podcasting.
Andy: I was just looking for the ideal angle to show you this cool app that I was using over the weekend called Sun Surveyor and what it does is, it will show you where the sun is going to be at any place on earth, at any time you specify and I'm using it as an example because when I was in New York last week I really wanted to take a picture of this sculpture that is part of a pediment on this bank in The Bowery of New York and of course, you want to get it when the sun is hitting it just right and of course, you can get some information from Google Maps but from here, it will actually show you- Plug in what day you're going to be there. Sunday? Okay well what's the location? Pull up Google Street View, for instance, and it will show you the path that the sun is going to be taking exactly that day and each one of these little marks here shows you what time that will be. This is just the street view but you can also get a simpler view like this that pretty much shows the arc of the sun as it moves around that neighborhood. So I say that if I am going to get there by 10 o' clock or 11 this is about the time that I was visiting and as you can see, this is exactly where the sun was hitting at that certain time. It's got so many cool views like that and also has an enhance to reality mode where it will just activate the camera and simply super-impose on the view of the camera and as you move it around, it will show you there where the sun will be at certain times based on where in the sky you've got it pointed. It tracks the moon too by the way and is not the only tracker like that but the others are super expensive - priced like Pro tools. This one isn't dirt cheap but it's like $6 on the iOS store, where it's good enough of an app with appropriate pricing that you'll actually be glad the developers are getting money for this, but it's not so expensive that you'll buy it just to have it in there.
Leo: Sun Surveyor. .com? Sorry, I'm still eating Nature Box.
Andy: I know, I don't really want to make this into the extended commercial but I had the same experience as Rene where I'm like I'm enjoying food recreational and I don't feel like crap afterwards.a
Leo: It's amazing.
Andy: It turns out that feeling terrible after eating a Hostess cupcake is not a necessary part of snacking, there are other snacks that don't make you feel terrible.
Leo: Saddest day of my life - when I realized that Krispy Kream donuts don't make me feel good. Hey, are you moved back over to the iPhone? What's the story there?
Andy: I have not moved back to the iPhone yet and will likely buy the iPhone 6 for the library for testing. I will wait to see what the Android L looks like and will say that unfortunately, for this experiment I'm having too much fun with the Moto X watch. This is a good enough product that if it's between iOS and Android, I might stick with Android just to keep a hold of this watch because of how useful it really is.
Leo: Don't worry, Apple is going to have a watch any month now.
Andy: Don't you love that "problem" where there are two fantastically mature and incredibly exciting platforms to choose from and you can't choose between them because they're both so good?
Rene: You have two pocket Andy Ihnatko, two pockets.
Andy: The hell you say? You're a liar, a Canadian liar.
Leo: I only got one pocket!
Rene: Dropbox updated for the document providers and I hope more and more do that. They only doing it half way but I think they're going to update quickly and then you'll have all of those things wherever you want them, it's going to be really nice.
Leo: Speaking of Dropbox, they have acquired an app that everybody love. In fact, it really transformed how people use Mail on the iOS platform. It's called Mailbox. Good news, if you've wanted Mailbox on iOS 10- I know, I think Rene recommended it for iOS 10. -They've opened the Beta up as of today so everybody can go to mailboxapp.com and try Mailbox on the desktop. I used to like Apple Mail and I've been using Mail Mate, it's like a power tool. Anyways, I just thought I'd mention that. And I just took a picture of Andy using my friend Kevin Rose's new app: Tiiny. It's a very odd social app, I've got to tell you. The idea of it is that you can snap stills or videos of tiny pictures, all of which will disappear in 24 hours so it's like a public Snapchat, if that's not a contradiction in terms.
Andy: It looks like a social media app for flies.
Leo: I like it. I brought it to London with me, and the problem is you can't go back now and look at my pictures from London, they're gone. But you can follow people and you can get this video mosaic of all of these videos and stills and there are people doing some really creative and interesting things with Tiiny. I don't know if this is going to stick, in a way i kind of say get it now before it goes away. It's free and is really just for iPhone, I don't think they have an iPad version of Tiiny and they certainly, absolutely don't have an Android version. This and the iPhone camera are the two things that have kept me using iOS. Alright everybody, that's about it for this edition of MacBreak Weekly. We have done everything that we came to do.
Leo: We came not to bury the MacIntosh but to praise it. And tomorrow morning we're all going to be here- Well Rene will be at the event but Andy and I will be here, and maybe we can get a call from you afterwards if they let you try the brand new MacBook Air with Retina display or whatever the hell it is that they're selling.9:30 AM Pacific 10 and 12:30 Eastern time the day after tomorrow. Thank you Andy Ihnatko for being here, Chicago Sun Times always great to see you.
Andy: Thank you and thank you for accepting the limitless resources of someone who have been doing 25,000 steps a day.
Leo: Woow..... Nice. Rene Ritchie is at imore.com and he also does quite a few podcasts including the Great Debug Podcast, you've got to listen to the Don Melton episode but every week is a revelation. Anything to plug this week?
Rene: We're going to have the second part of Melton and Ganatra going up I think tomorrow so you can hear more of that if that's what you like. And we did a live vector podcast from Singleton talking about Satya Nadella and some other things.
Leo: Well good. Make sure you check out imore.com and remember that there is no iless.
Rene: Not until April Fool's Day.Leo: We do MacBreak Weekly every Tuesday 11 am Pacific 2 pm Eastern time, 1800 UTC on twit.tv please stop by and say hi. You can watch us live here or come to the studio. But you can also watch on demand audio and video after the fact at twit.tv/mbw but also on all of the different podcast apps for all of the platforms. Thanks for joining us, get back to work! Break time is over!