MacBreak Weekly 441 (Transcripts)
Leo Laporte: Time for Macbreak weekly! We've got a great show for you, Serenity Caldwell is here from iMore filling in for Rene Richie. Also Mike Hurley from Relay.fm in the UK, that's going to be a lot of fun. Andy Ihnatko too, talk about the latest Apple news, next on Macbreak Weekly.
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This is Macbreak weekly episode 441 recorded Feb 10th 2015.
Trolling Apple support
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Leo: It's time for Macbreak weekly, the show where we talk about the latest news from Cupertino, that's where Rene Richie is getting his secret briefing right now, so...
Andy Inhako: (laughter)
Leo: What are you laughing at Andy Inhako?
Andy: You've always got everybody else's back. (laughter)
Leo: He didn't say so. He didn't say so but, I'm assuming so. But we have brought in two people to replace him. So starting at my left with mister Andy Inhako, of the Chicago Sun Times, of course. Can't do a show without him. Serenity Caldwell from iMore.com, great to have you.
Serenity Caldwell: Great to be here.
Leo: Both of them from the Boston area, where the snow has reached Gronkowski plus reach heights, I'm told. That's like eight feet high, isn't he huge?
Serenity: He's like six-something feet, and then they have him reaching with the football too, so it's like measuring up there too. It's ridiculous.
Leo: Wow. Wow. I have to say, I am a fan of any team that has a guy named Gronkowski on the team. And the fact that he's a great player makes it just even better.
Serenity: It's a bonus.
Andy: If you've got a name that naturally collapses with the nickname Gronk, you're definitely going to be either rugby or football, there's just no way to get around it, that's divine ordinance right there.
Leo: Gronk! (chuckle) Gronk. And if you're name was spelled M-Y-K-E, you'd probably be the other kind of footballer. Myke Hurley is here, co-founder of relay.fm. Great to have you! First time.
Myke Hurley: Pleasure to be here, Leo, thank you so much.
Leo: I see you're well equipped with your Bob Heil Arm and Microphone
Myke: Of course, I'm pretending to be a pro, so I had to get the equipment.
Leo: Tell us about relay.fm.
Myke: We're a relatively new podcast network but I've been doing this for a while, we have a bunch of shows. We have my good friend Mr. Jason Snell has a couple of shows on Relay, yeah we're kicking things off.
Leo: I already hate you. I hate you, I hate you.
Leo: And they have a working website, damn you! So actually, I'm really interested in The Pen Addict, frankly. I'm going to start listening to that, because I also am a pen addict.
Myke: Oh you'll love it. You'll love it.
Leo: I love pens.
Myke: We have a very specific, but very devoted audience for that show. (chuckle)
Leo: I just, I always wanted to do a pen show. That's exactly why I didn't because I felt like it would be a very specific, small audience.
Andy: Was it like episode 80something where you had that big round table debate about blue vs midnight blue ink? That was a driveway moment, because I thought they were really going to kill each other.
Myke: You think we haven't done it. (chuckle)
Leo: I'm sure they have. What kind of pen are you rocking these days?
Myke: I have it right here, my favorite at the moment is called a Twsbi 540.
Leo: Oh I want it!
Myke: I am a fountain pen guy
Leo: Me too. Well of course you are! You can't be a pen addict and be like a felt tipped pen addict. That's silly, you have to be a fountain pen guy. That's a given. What's it called again?
Myke: It's called Twsbi T-W-S-B-I. I think they're from Korea, or Japan.
Leo: They're inspired by writing, oh they're beautiful.
Myke: They are stunning.
Leo: You see, everybody is... I'm a pen addict too. Wow. Look at these.
Andy: Are they all demonstrators?
Myke: Most of them are, yeah.
Leo: What's a demonstrator?
Myke: It's when you can see the ink, it demonstrates the ink, yeah.
Leo: Ahh. I kind of like that.
Serenity: It's nasty!
Myke: They have different sizes. Well I've taken over! I've been here for five minutes, and we're talking about pens. (laughter)
Leo: (Laughter) I love pens!
Serenity: Welcome to Macbreak.
Leo: Pens and watches. That's it. There's the.. Those are the things that matter. I have actually picked up the iPhone again, because I want to prepare for the Apple Watch. So I figure by April I should be actually ready, because I know I'm going to have to carry an iPhone again. You know, it's not half bad. It's not bad. You know when you don't carry an iPhone day to day, now this is the 6 not the 6+, and you hold it, It's just really a remarkably well designed device, down to the glass that's kind of flowing over the sides like that, I just love this.
Andy: I'm doing a follow up to my iPad Air 2 review that will probably hit either this week or next, and I just really had to... Sometimes you find yourself facing a lead paragraph that you instinctively want to delete because, “oh that looks like a bus ad,” but I really do have to stick with... (laughter) I really do have to be honest to say that I think the iPad Air 2 is the most beautiful, most perfect Apple product, and it's the most beautiful tech item you can buy today and the design that flows on to the iPhone 6 is a little bit of a step down for a couple of reasons, but Apple is just so good at making these beautiful, beautiful objects.
Leo: Well I think we can all agree it's the Twsbi of tablets.
Andy: If it's transparent aluminum bodied that is definitely the Twsbi of tablets.
Leo: I want a demonstrator iPad, that would be cool! (laughter) See how I use the words right away? I just incorporate them into my life. (laughter) The issue of course, for a lot of us still is that iOS 8 is still a little flaky and buggy, we're now up to 8 point... What is it one point three? I can't even keep track of the updates.
Andy: Eight point three or something? What is it, something just...
Leo: Something just came out. (Laughter) The current version on my 6 is 8.1.3, and I guess they're seeding 8.1.4 probably. But, word comes out from Mark Gurman at 9to5 Mac that iOS 9 will be, what we have been saying for some time, the Snow Leopard of iOS, the “let's fix this all now before we add a lot of new features.” Good idea, Serenity?
Serenity: You know, I think that there's actually been a fair amount of improvement done in the 8 point variations, I think it's definitely a good idea to continue that improvement, especially with iOS 9. But I think the rumors of iOS 9 being exactly identical to a Snow Leopard type release, where you have no new features, I think that might be a little hard to sell in this current Apple economy where everybody really like... Can you imagine? I mean especially with, again, “Apple's biggest quarter ever” and all of that, having them come out and be like, “yeah, we're not going to release any features for a year.”
Leo: That's kind of an unfortunate cage, isn't it? Where you're expected to be innovating constantly.
Serenity: It is. It absolutely is, and it's so frustrating because of course when you're moving at this fast pace, and Apple did kind of dig themselves into a hole here by saying “We're going to release iOS updates every year, and they're going to be exciting!” Rather than, “maybe we should do this every other year and give ourselves some, you know space.”
Leo: Breathing room, yeah.
Serenity: Yeah exactly. But now Wall Street and it's component parts expect that Apple has to release x y and z every so often, and if they don't God forbids, you know? It's unfortunate and they have kind of dug themselves into a hole. But I do think there is a good way to balance here, where they can sell something that's a more stable update, while at the same time saying, “Ok, we have some new features too,” and maybe those will implicitly play into the stability, so maybe it's “extensions, but a couple new extensions. So we can solidify our extensibility framework that we started with our iOS 8 and build up some new things so that people aren't immediately like 'Oh why isn't there new stuff?'”
Leo: Apple is doomed! (laughter)
Serenity: Exactly. (laughter)
Leo: That's too bad, and there's got to be some way out of that. I think that really hurts you. Although, I agree with you Serenity that with the notches, the 8.1.2 and 8.1.3 has gotten rid of most of the bugs. I do wish they'd open NFC, it's one of the first things I want. I have a Sony phone that has NFC and I can tap the phone to the camera, they will pair and copy the images off the camera into the phone, which is really handy for quick Instagraming and stuff.
Serenity: That's neat.
Leo: Yeah, and I thought “oh this is no problem because these new iPhones have NFC” but it's locked down, only Apple can use it. So it's a little frustrating. That's the kind of mini thing that an iOS, well I hope they do it before 9 but, an iOS update could fix. It wouldn't seem like a big feature.
Serenity: Yeah I'm pretty sure it's software related.
Leo: It's definitely software.
Serenity: The real problem in that arena is security and Apple, we've seen in the past, is very very serious about making sure that user's devices are appropriately locked down so that information just can't fly out all willy nilly.
Leo: Oh but that's paranoia. We've had pairing via Bluetooth for years. Why not make it easier with NFC? You tap it and it says “Oh hello you're here, ok I'm there.”
Serenity: Yeah and I think that it's definitely and option down the line, but current technology just may not be secure enough, it may not be implemented currently in a way that apple feels is secure enough to allow random NFC pairing. Because if you think about it, they open that up, that opens the doors to all kinds of uses with third party apps. It's not just tapping your camera to offload your pictures, it could be exchanging all kinds of secure information or potential information that needs to be secure, and if they don't have a good system for ensuring customer security, especially, again going back to “Apple's biggest quarter ever, Apple's big target.” The last thing Apple wants is a big news story that's like “NFC system compromised, NFC is also the thing that Apple pay uses.” Even though apple pay may not be compromised, you could see how that could very easily spin out of control into a “If NFC is compromised, Apple pay is compromised, this thing is a failure!”
Andy: I think it's also a question of style, like what features really float Apple's boat when they're putting something in, and I don't think NFC is as interesting to them as the idea of , “why do you have to tap to begin with? Why can't this device just simply sense the real close presence of this device and then move you forward that way.
Leo: Which is the Bluetooth LE, I guess right?
Andy: Exactly, and that works great too. I've used contact-less payments with my Android phone and with an iPhone and it really is that difference between “I actually have to take my Android phone and lay it on top of the transponder that's at MacDonald's or Walgreens,” or whatever. Whereas my phone just simply says “Oh I see you're within half a foot of this pay terminal, do you want to pay using my wonderful contact-less pay system?” There's a case to be made for both ways. It's also a philosophical thing where do you want to create NFC and then say “everybody, whatever you want to do with NFC do that thing with NFC.” Or do you want to have an ecosystem where there is some measure of control, where there is a plan for how this is supposed to be used, and how a customer is going to expect NFC to improve their lives? I think Apple would much rather have a story behind NfC than simply saying “Yep, we put that in there, we put in wireless charging, and all these other things, whatever you guys want to do with it, surprise us and please us with your inventiveness.” I don't think that's Apple's way of going.
Leo: It does kind of underscore why I moved to Android. Because I'm anti-authoritarian by nature.
Andy: You're a rebel. (laughter)
Leo: I am a rebel. It's like “Oh great, Apple finally put NFC in their phone, oh too bad only Apple can use it. It's like (sucks teeth)...
Myke: It's interesting, Leo, that you went to that place, you thought “Oh I'll just tap my camera to it and it'll work. It shows that you've kind of been away from the iPhone for a while.
Leo: (Laughter) My false expectations, huh? Scooter in our chatroom is saying “I love it, I can tap my phone to my Bluetooth headphones, it pairs and turns them on, and I'm done.” You get used to features like that. Now remember, NFC's been around for a long time. Samsung started this, we had an NFC tag in the hallway, when people visited the studio, they could tap it with their non-iPhone and it would launch Foursquare and check them in. But nobody ever did that. So there have been a lot of NFC features that nobody misses, but you get attached to some simple things, like pairing to devices very quickly. I think there's cars now where you tap the dashboard with your NFC.
Andy:Yeah you can do things like that, as a matter of fact I have an NFC tag in my phone dash holder, so I don't have to do anything. I have a piece of software in there that says “If you see this NFC tag that means I'm in the car, so therefore disconnect from Wifi, set the launcher to this, do this, do that and the other.” Also stuff that I wouldn't bother to do if I had to do it all manually. Over the years I'm so amazed by how much technology is controlled by the personality of that device. The correct response to that if you're coming from an Apple perspective is “Andy had to put that tag there, and Andy had to find out the software existed, and he had to configure that software, we'd much rather build something so that things just work by magic even if that means that Andy cant' do that with an iPhone until 2015 or 2016, 2017.”
Leo: “It's just not our personality, we just don't do those things.”
Myke: They have iBeacons, right? The Bluetooth low energy... I know it's not the same thing.
Leo: Yeah but it's interesting how little that's been implemented or used.
Andy: I keep going back and forth about which one I prefer. I like NFC because as far as a physical user interface, I like the idea that if I bring this comes in contact with this, I've definitely registered where I am. Whereas there are times where it's not identifying the presence of a device, I don't know if it's because a radio was turned off, or I'm not close enough. It's really technology that has to be everywhere before it's going to be anywhere, so to speak.
Leo: It's kind of a situation where you decide that there are standards that everyone else is adopting. It's a weird mindset but I think it's Apple's mindset, in order to provide value, we have to do it our way. And be competitive. WE don't want to do what everybody else is doing because there's no differentiation, it's partly that. You can use the security excuse but I think that's kind of a red herring, I don't think NFC is inherently insecure, I think they could make it more so. But it's really more “we want to differentiate.” And then it's just about competition. NFC works just fine, there's no problem with NFC it's just that everybody else has implemented it.
Andy: Also, there is a reason why a phone doesn't have an SD card slot. It's not that it isn't a good feature, it's not that there isn't a subset of people who are really going to use that. It's not just deciding to build it, it's also deciding to support it and debug it, and make sure every subsequent release supports it. And before you undertake that kind of effort, even if you're a big company like Apple or Google or whoever, you ask yourself “Should we put that kind of effort into a feature that we think is going to work better, or be harmonious to all kinds of other things we have planned, or should we put in a feature that 10% will absolutely love, 80% will be completely indifferent to, and another 10% could be talked into it.
Leo: We've talked about this before, Apple also has a follow through issue. So they said “we're going to do beacons, we're going to do Bluetooth LE, not NFC.” In order for that to be competitive, you need to then push it, and iBeacons have just sat there. It's happened again and again with Apple technologies.
Andy: Well you could say that AppleTV has just sort of sat there, you could also say that Healthkit and Homekit have just sort of sat there, that's less of a case with those last two technologies, but it's kind of ok to put these out there, and whatever the next step is, you know that you've fixed this first step.
Leo: Look they sold 74 ½ iPhones, obviously they're doing something right. By the way that was only last quarter.
Andy: It's just amazing, almost everything you could point to and term a “failure” is only a failure compared to the iPhone, for everybody else it would be huge.
Leo: They're selling ten phones a second, so obviously whatever I care about is not mainstream enough for Apple to worry about. Go ahead Serenity, I'm sorry.
Serenity: I was just going to say, regarding iBeacons, there's a lot of tech that's been implemented especially on the retail side, but it's not sexy so you don't hear about it. You don't hear “Nordstrums is implementing iBeacons to help shop more easily.” Those stories haven't been posted, and that happened last year.
Leo: Because no one uses it.
Serenity: The thing about iBeacons though, is that they're not designed to be active things. Going back to the idea that Apple wants things to just work, they don't want you to actively think about tapping your phone to something. Ibeacons are not designed to do that.
Leo: Wait a minute, Apple pay you tap your phone to something, you can't say that that's a bad thing. (Laughter)
Serenity: No I'm not.
Leo: You can't have it both ways, we changed the world by making it so easy for Apple pay by tapping something but now we don't want to do tapping for something else, right?
Serenity: It's the difference between spending your money and having digital goods leave your wallet, VS walking into a store and getting a pop-up. For instance, you know those little tiny icons.
Leo: But have you had that happen? You've gone into Nordstrum's and things have popped up on your phone?
Serenity: Not Nordstrum's per say, but Starbucks is a great example. They have the Bluetooth LE technology. IF you ever see the icon in the lower left hand corner of the lock screen when you walk by an Apple store, or walk near any other retailer that has this technology implemented, it allows you to quickly launch the app, and see coupons relative to that specific store, it allows you to book a Genius appointment if you're at the apple store. The iBeacons aren't active features, they're basically just little locators.
Leo: Forgive me, but “UGH.” So my choice is between having functional NFC and tap on things to Bluetooth pair, and copy pictures to my phone, or I can walk by a store and something pops up saying “buy some coffee.” Thank you Apple for choosing the better of the two. Come on, really?
Serenity: They're two different technologies.
Leo: I know they are, but my point is exactly that. Apple chose a technology that is implemented to do something for retailers but doesn't do anything for me, vs something they could really do something for me, and finally they put it in and what do they do? They disable it for everybody but apple pay.
Myke: With your phone, Leo, does it just work within the same manufacturer?
Leo: No. Any Android phone with NFC, you have to have the Sony app installed, but when you tap it against the camera, the NFC chip says “Launch play memories” and play memories launches and the two pair, I copy them from my Sony phone to my Nexus 6 or whatever I'm using. It is open, a standard and used widely by companies for Bluetooth pairing. It's not actually Bluetooth, what this does is a little different. It establishes an ad hoc wifi connection to send the pictures over, very rapidly which is nice, and then disables the wifi connection so I haven't lost my internet. It's actually very elegant.
Andy: Serenity is absolutely right though. They are two different technologies for two different purposes. I think that NFC is great when you really do need to have that mental process of “I want this to talk to this, so I'm going to tap them together, so they'll talk to each other.” But then also, when I first started playing with NFC, I put NFC stickers in lots of places, I put them in the spot on my desk where I drop my phone, I put one in the doorway of my house so I could say I was home, but I almost never used them. Whereas if my AppleTV were an iBeacon and it could simply tell that I was home and tell the thermostat, and make sure the lights are on upstairs and make sure other things happen, that would be software I would use all the time. I'm just not in the habit of I've got to tap the doorway, or call for an arch before I can use all these great features.
Leo: Well maybe they'll build it in someday.
Serenity: Yeah, there's definitely...
Myke: In theory. (laughter)
Leo: Maybe they'll do that someday. I have to say there is an example which is the Apple wallet, which, for several iterations of iPhones was completely silly, right? It was boarding passes and royalty cards.
Serenity: Passbook, yeah.
Leo: Passbook. But with the advent of Apple Wallet, suddenly it's great. And we complained for years about “why can't I put credit cards in here?” And finally Apple did it. So maybe iBeacon.. they'll get around to it.
Myke: Maybe the homekit stuff might be something. Say like coming home and having lights turn on and things like that, maybe you can just say, “hey Siri, I'm home,” and it does a bunch of things.
Leo: WE are going to see an 8.3 with the advent of the Apple Watch. Not only will that support Apple Watch but there's a lot more coming. 9To5 Mac again... Damn that Mark Gurman. I hope Rene's getting some big briefings here. (Laughter)
Serenity: He's just shaking his fist saying “were are your leads, where is Mark getting all of this?”
Leo: He's got some good sources, I can tell you that.
Serenity: He very much does.
Andy: Rene's like “I'm spending a whole week sitting in coffee shops with binoculars look at people to see what's on their res, see if they have special shoes on
Leo: Just follow Mark Gurman around, that's all. (laughter) So iOS 3 wireless car play, I like it. Maybe that's LE. Improved Google login, new Emojis. (Sigh) And Apple Pay for China. So this has been seeded along with the 6.3 beta for Xcode and a new version of Swift, which we'll talk about in just a second. I wonder how wirelessly connecting the iPhone to the Carplay... maybe that is iBeacon.
Serenity: Well I believe that's Bluetooth connectivity. Previous to this, any manufacturer who had Carplay enabled you had to physically plug in your phone.
Leo: Oh you had to plug it in, so this is just Bluetooth
Serenity: Yeah. So this is the wireless version of Carplay. SO now when you get in your car you don't have to plug in your phone, it will just connect automatically, no USB or anything like that.
Leo: Is there enough bandwidth to use Bluetooth? I think they must be doing an ad hoc wifi network. You're going to put the screen up, you're going to have Siri, you're going to have maps, I don't think Bluetooth's going to be able to do that.
Serenity: It might be ad hoc wifi, I'm not really sure about the technology behind wireless Carplay. Either way it's easier for the customer and the user.
Leo: And of course all the car manufacturers are going “Oh crap. (laughter) We'll have that in four years when we get the new models out.”
Andy: One of the central things about Carplay is, it's so that you don't necessarily have to have proprietary Apple hardware. You don't even need to have a special radio inside this cardeck, or have a special connector. So I wouldn't be surprised if they were using Bluetooth to at least start the connection and after that there is some other kind of data technology they're using to maintain the stream.
Leo: Right, because I don't know how fast Bluetooth can go. It might be fast enough, I don't know.
Andy: Bluetooth 4 is not bad.
Leo: It's pretty swift, yeah. Let's see what else... New logins for Google. This is for me, I use 2-factor with Google and it's kind of a pain. And this has been a while for other apps and OS's to adjust to the idea that you don't just have your email and your password, you also have to add a second factor. A lot of times with Apple I have to create an app specific password and this will eliminate that I think. The new Emoji picker. (Laughter)
Leo: Hallelujah! (Laughter) DO you use a lot of emojis, Serenity?
Serenity: Two years ago if someone had said to me “You're going to be real excited about a new emoji picker, I'd be like uhh what? But I actually have been using them a lot.
Leo: I am too, I use them. I confess.
Serenity: My friend got me into them, they're fun.
Leo: They're really fun. By the way, I saw a study that people who use emojis have more sex than people who don't. So that's good. (laughter) Seriously! That's a serious study.
Andy: Yeah, but they have emoji sex, you don't want to invite that person to your bedroom, trust me.
Leo: (Laughing) It is interesting to see how you can pervert what would normally be just regular emojis to indicate...
Leo: More romantic topics. Things! Yes thank you. Myke thank you. (laughter) You know where I'm going with this. So I like the new emoji picker.
Serenity: It's actually interesting to me, because this is not exactly based off of a third party keyboard we saw, namely David Smith's Emoji++
Leo: I love that.
Serenity: Yeah, it's a great third party keyboard, and it shows how Apple is paying attention to how people are using iOS8 and the software within iOS8 and they're like “Yeah, you know what? Actually our emoji picker is kind of horrible, because you have to go through random tabs, and it's not really clear which icons belong to which obscurely labeled feature.” So to open that up and make it all scrollable I think is a really awesome improvement. It sucks for David, but... (laughter)
Myke: They're also adding more diversity to the emoji as well, so I think if you hold down on them you can choose different skin tones and stuff like that for different people.
Leo: Oh really? That's awesome! Yeah that's great!
Myke: I think that's something that Apple had been lobbying for, actually. Like the board, “the emoji board” I'll call them, I don't know who controls that.
Leo: I think it's actually, believe it or not, part of the unicode specification.
Myke: I think you're right, yeah.
Leo: But they only specify “this is going to be a construction guy in a helmet” they don't specify how that actually looks, so every company gets to design their own emojis. You want them to be.. you know familiar. But yeah I think that's nice that you can choose your race instead of it all being white folks. What else? The health app in 8.3 has been updated with links to the Mayo clinic website.
Andy: Every little piece of news on the health app is such great news for people who use iPhones and for apple. I don't think there is any technology that Apple is working on right now, including the Apple Watch, that could be as trans formative as HealthKit. If It really paves off the way that they're planning it to, if five years from now, this becomes the central conduit for monitoring devices you have inside your house, data your phone can collect simply by being inside someone's pocket and seeing that this person hasn't really moved much in the past three days and they're usually very active, I wonder what's going on. Apple always talks about how to one degree or another how we're not just trying to build really successful consumer devices, we really want to improve people's lives. This will improve people's lives, and extend people's lives. So today's news isn't that big, but every brick in that wall is just making it stronger and stronger. I'm so excited about what Apple is doing with HealthKit.
Leo: And there's a big spotlight as to how the Apple Watch will support this kind of stuff as well, right?
Andy: That's another really big deal. Fortunately, I have not had health problems myself, but I have been the caretaker for people with health problems, and one feature that they're talking about, this ongoing blood glucose monitor will require some kind of trans dermal interface. You can't do it just by sweat or by heartbeat, you need contact with, even micro blood. But the ability to say “I'm not just going to take my reading in the morning, I'm going to take a reading in the afternoon and the evening.” That is useful, but not as useful as a diabetic being able to just check the watch and say “wow usually I don't see a spike like that at 2pm what did I do at 130 or at 1 o clock that would cause that?” Diabetes management is all about your behavior, and doing all the stuff you need to avoid doing to become an insulin dependent diabetic. SO this is the sort of data, being able to say “I'm going to get every single number over the course of the day,” and being able to present that in a way that you will just casually see these outliers that will alert you to a problem you can solve really quickly. That's the sort of stuff that enhances and extends people’s lives.
Leo: Just to get back to the really important stuff, here's an emoji table...
Andy: (unintelligible) (laughter)
Leo: Screw health!
Andy: How about a dog crap emoji, and then a bull crap emoji... (Laughter)
Leo: Another Brit, Tim Whitlock of London, has a page, apps.timwhitlock.info that shows all the unicode emojis. And then the different drawings depending on Native, Apple, Android, Symbola, Twitter and Phantom, and of course there are many others because the specification is simply for instance “face with tears of joy,” and there are different ways to implement it. You can see how it's been implemented differently.
Andy: Yeah, the Android emojis are kind of obnoxious.
Leo: The robot ones are, I have to agree with you.
Andy: The Android robot, yeah.
Leo: I've never seen that, I don't know which versions of Android implement that. I've seen the second Android table which is the more colorful one. But you can see Apple has added a little whimsy to the fire engine and the ambulance. Apple's closer, I think, to the cannonical emojis, the native, as Tim calls them, emojis. For instance, Android, when you do a flag, Android just gives you the country code for the flag, US, but Apple gives you a lovely waving US flag. So there's things like that. So anyway, back to the HealthKit, I'm sorry. The chatroom just gave me this link and I thought “Ooh, that's cool, it's Tim Whitlock.”
Andy: No it is cool. Emojis are so interesting. Serenity said she came around to emojis, I'm still one generation behind. I'm still low aski emoji mode mentally. Every time I want to use that I just think “colon, close parenthesis” I'm not thinking emoji. And to a certain degree, I”m kind of resentful of the fact that I never use emojis ever, and yet there's a button on the keyboard to give me direct access to that. I would pay 40 dollars to switch that out for a keyboard function that I actually use.
Leo: What would it be?
Andy: I would like switching between keyboards easier, I would like to have a pop up menu of four or five phrases that I use all the time.
Leo: Yeah that would be cool.
Andy: It's just that I never ever ever ever use emojis.
Leo: How's your love life? I'm just curious. (Laughter)
Andy: Shut up! (pretend crying)
Andy: It's “left bracket, number three” and has been for quite some time. Sometimes it's multiple left bracket number three.
Leo: I misspoke, 8.3 is not the next one, obviously, we're at 8.1.3, it will be 8.2, and will come out with Apple Watch in April. And then 8.3 I don't know. But they've seeded the 8.3. Maybe it will come out quickly, I don't know. Why are they seeding 8.3 now to developers, when 8.2 is the next generation?
Serenity: It's very odd, I can't think of another time when they've concurrently seeded two different iOS beta builds. They usually have the default build, and then one beta ahead, but see two different betas is interesting. It might have something to do with WatchKit, it might have something to do with HealthKit, not having dug around and also being under an NDA I can't say for sure.
Leo: Ix-nay! Hey does 8.1.3 help with the third party keyboards? Because I have to say I've now disabled third party keyboards in iOS because it's implementation still seems kind of wonky.
Myke: It's still slow.
Serenity: Yeah, unfortunately we're still “tap tap tap.” I was kind of hoping when I saw a new emoji keyboard, I'm like “Maybe you can hold down and it shows you the little menu on all of the keyboards,” but no.
Serenity: Soon. I filed a radar. Everyone who's mad at it should file a radar.
Leo: Oh did you? Really? Tell us about that. Do you have to be a developer to do a radar?
Serenity: You do not. Bugreport.apple.com
Leo: Anybody can? Oh that's good.
Serenity: You want to talk about NFC, Leo...
Leo: You've given me a tool, yes! (Laughter) They do keep track of your AppleID so I guess I can't just do whatever I want.
Serenity: Willy nilly, yeah you can't troll Apple Support. Let them work on their actual updates, Leo.
Leo: Ok. And by the way they're also working on iOS 8.4 according to Mark Gurman. Maybe he's gone a little too far now.
Serenity: Yeah, I think Mark just wants to super scoop everybody.
Leo: Just in case you already know about 8.2, I know about 8.4. And this is the one that would include, perhaps,
Andy: (As Mark Gurman) iPhone 7. Mum's the word, this time next year all anyone's going to talk about is iPhone 7. I wish I could say more but I can't. Iphone 7. (laughter)
Leo: Our Google analytics indicate that 8.4 is well into testing. The reason is because you can see it, and it identifies. itself when you visit it with the website. But apparently this would be the new version of Beats. Although I have to say I wish more people knew about iTunes radio, they do such a good job, and it's free, right, you don't have to do match?
Serenity: Free with ads, no ads with match I believe.
Myke: Unless you're in the UK.
Leo: What do you get in the UK.
Myke: We just don't have it. (chuckle)
Leo: You don't get anything, huh?
Myke: No, no iTunes radio there.
Serenity: You get a tiny violin. (laughter)
Myke: Yep, that's it just a little violin icon. (laughter)
Leo: There should be an emoji for that. That would be a good one.
Myke: I think there is a violin.
Leo: Is there one?
Serenity: Yeah. That's what gifts are for, Leo.
Andy: To be fair, you do get to watch QI without having to go through a proxy server.
Leo: Hey wait a minute, good news. QI is coming to BBC America, but they're not starting with season 1! I'm bummed about that. Yeah that's right, I'll trade you Beats Music for QI.
Myke: I actually do have Beats Music. I did a little trick and turned my location off and signed up. And then when Apple took it over, they killed that.
Leo: Actually, that's going too cheap. I'll trade you iTunes radio, Beats Music , the whole kit and caboodle for Stephen Fry. I just want all of Stephen Fry.
Myke: I do have the ability to do that, so... (laughter)
Leo: You know I was really bummed because the Harry Potter books in the UK are read by Stephen Fry.
Myke: They're the best.
Leo: Not that Jim Dale who does them on Audible in the US is bad, he's great. In fact, he's often considered legend, he does all the voices. Stephen doesn't quite do all the voices and stuff, but I just love Stephen Fry. I actually bit torrented the UK version, after buying the American version.
Leo: Because I like Stephen Fry.
Serenity: I understand. When Stephen Fry showed up at what would be the iPad announcement, I did have a little bit of “It's Hitchiker's Guide, I'm watching Hitchhiker's Guide.”
Leo: He was there, wasn't he?
Andy: He was at the Apple Watch announcement too.
Serenity: He was there and I missed it?
Myke: He wrote a great article right after the iPad came out where Steve had taken him into the back room and showed him the iPad before they announced it. So he got to see it in advance, which is pretty sweet.
Andy: I thought that was such a fun article. Steve Jobs is the Steve Jobs of technology, but Stephen Fry is definitely the Stephen Fry of his industry too. And he was so intimidated and so “I was shown into this room that was like an altar, the air and gravity seemed different, Steve jobs made eye contact with me and my vision blurred a little bit.” It was amazing to see someone who could induce that kind of reaction in so many fans, is also that big of a fan of Apple that they can feel that sort of way too.
Leo: He is apparently in a little bit of hot water over in the UK isn't he Myke, because he swore at the BAFTA awards. (laughter)
Myke: Yeah, also he had this video that went out on Irish TV I think recently, where somebody asked him what he thought of God.
Leo: Uh oh. (laughter)
Myke: Yeah, that's interesting. Google that.
Andy: The question was “if you met God, what would you say to him?” And it was such a cool intellectual response. “I would say how dare you give kids bone cancer, how dare you do this, how dare you do that?”
Leo: Always a challenge.
Myke: Except that he really really won't.
Leo: Somehow, we've... Emojis always derail this show, by the way, I just want to say. In fact Twit has been derailed plenty of times by emojis in general. OSX, see now this is another issue, because those of you who are using the new OSX, cannot speak about it. It's like Fight Club. But I think that you, Serenity and Rene did an article about the new Photos app in OSX, right?
Serenity: We did yeah.
Leo: You can talk about that.
Serenity: We can definitely talk about that.
Leo: Let's take a break and come back and talk about that, because Apple, as you know... Aperture's dead, iPhoto is now dead, Photos is the new thing, and if you're on iOS, you've seen Photos on iOS, this is the new desktop Photos. And we'll have some new implications for iOS as well we'll talk about that in just a bit. This is OS 10.10.3 I think... But first a word from Squarespace. Squarespace 7, the newest Squarespace is gorgeous. It's simple, it's easy to use, and they made it even more powerful. There is no more separation between edit and preview mode, you're looking at the changes as you go. And if you'll just go to Squarespace.com, you'll see the gorgeous array of things you can do. In fact, click that get started button and you'll have two free weeks to play with the templates, import some of your data from your existing site, get an idea of what your site might look like on Squarespace. Elegant, beautiful templates, and I talk about the content management system, but let's not forget, the best hosting too. They're all, part and parcel, the same thing. Look how good it looks on an iPhone, it looks great on a 27 inch screen or a 55 inch screen, because all Squarespace sites are responsive, that means they work on any size screen. No longer is there a difference between your mobile version and your desktop version, it just all looks great. Incredible 24 hour customer support, even if you're just doing a free trial. They're very helpful, and they're always available at the Squarespace offices in NYC. It starts at just 8 dollars a month, and that includes hosting, and when you sign up for a year it includes your domain name. They hook it all up for you, and of course it includes that great support. Every website has built in e-commerce with cover pages. It's a snap to set up a beautiful one page online presence in minutes. Great quick landing page for your brand or to promote a new product, and that's all a part of your Squarespace account. Start it today, by just doing that trial. You don't need a credit card and you don't need our offer code, just go to squarespace.com. But when you do sign up, you'll get ten percent off when you use the offer code MACBREAK. Squarespace: Build it beautiful. Squarespace.com.
Leo: It sounded like, from your review serenity, that photos is midway between iPhoto and aperture.
Serenity: Yeah, so we get a first look and also pretty in depth, at big q, of the beta, which I should stress is very much beta. It's not in the final form yet, although there might be a public beta coming out later on with the official release in spring. It very much reminds me of apple's other redesigned, super level apps, which is at it's very basic it's very simplified, and has all the things you've come to expect from iOS, you've got your moments, collections, albums. But it also has some traditional longstanding iPhone features, like faces, import your apps for an iPhoto libraries. And it has these incredible editing tools, which on their face are very simplified, but you can basically drop down the color, black and white. The sliders are much more detailed, and much more detailed information. You can add, previously what we considered professional tools. Like levels and balance, things like that that most people would never play with but are available to the people who need them. And of course you still have the great photos, the projects, the prints, and all that stuff you've come to expect from iPhoto It's an interesting balance between what we've gotten used to in iPhoto, and the high level stuff that Aperture provided, it definitely doesn't have everything that Aperture provided it's missing a lot of stuff, including loops, it doesn't have brushes.
Leo: It doesn't have the loop, so there's no close up view, huh?
Serenity: Well there's no superimposed, but..
Leo: You can't zoom in?
Serenity: Well yeah you can. And the photos app includes all the same gestures that you've gotten used to doing in iOS.
Leo: The pinch..
Serenity: Exactly, you can pinch to zoom, and scroll really quickly
Leo: that's better than the loop, frankly, that's fine.
Serenity: Exactly, the loop is a fun tool and everything, and I understand why people use it for color correction. But there's a lot of stuff built in here, even though it looks simple on its front side, there's a lot in here to empower users and really allow them to dig in and play with their photos. Make beautiful stuff. I feel iPhoto was limited, where you were either a bare bones user who didn't know anything about photos and you're just “enhance tool, red eye tool” and you were done. Whereas I think the Photos app gives you more control over what your photos look like because it has filter, which everybody uses. But it also has these really simple color correction, like dragging a slider one way or the other. And if you want to learn how to play more with that, or you already know more about it, you can hit the drop down menu where you can do all kinds of things. You can add an Instagram or add a miniette to your photos, in a really simple easy manner. I appreciate the stacked way they built this, the same thing with organization, too. People look at photos app and the screen shots and they panicked. “I had an iPhoto library and it's organized, and my Aperture library I have folders” and all of the folders still exists, but it will exist in a much better way than they used to but it's all hidden in the menus so you don't have to worry about the folders unless it's something that matters to you. You don't have to worry about sidebar clutter unless it's something that appeals to you. If you want a slide bar with all your recent events you can have one. But if you don't you can use the default navigation. It's more flexible to fit with individual users, but pro users.. It reminds me a lot of final cut pro 10 in that way, where it's very bare bones for pro users. The basic management organization is there, and the basic editing tools, but you're missing a lot of the things. No Photoshop tools that were hidden in Aperture, and you're missing the high level management. I don't think that will never reappear, in fact Photos has been built with a strong code base. It feels solid and fast, which is such a dramatic difference from iPhoto, and it makes me happy with all of the memory leaks. But I don't think that stuff will never reappear. I think we are looking at updates when aperture was discontinued, apple would say they would be allowing third party plugins, so we will be policing that down the line.
Leo: That will be nice.
Serenity: Exactly, but the aperture users are panicking.
Leo: They're not panicking, they've all moved to light room.
Serenity: We've had plenty of complaints on iMore being like “Apple's abandoned me, and I hate Light room and what am I supposed to do. If you're a true professional and you need those tools, Light Room is one of your main options, but Aperture still works.
Leo: Is Aperture compatible with photos?
Serenity: In a way
Leo: Because remember they moved the iPhoto library to be
the same as the Aperture, so you could have this nice back and forth, so is it
a new library format?
Serenity: It is, but it doesn't convert your old library, so you can have two side by side libraries. Which isn't a perfect implementation, basically they had to rewrite the entire library code because of the way Photos app works, because they had to rebuild the photos app and reengineer it for cloud based photos.
Leo: This isn't the first time, this is what they've been doing all along with every pro app. You talk a little bit on the iMore show about this issue Apple has where they had to track the pro and consumer versions, and it sounds like at least with photos they're moving to this middle ground.
Serenity: I feel like they've been doing that will all of their previous consumer applications. The iMovie redesign is a good example that started as a consumer level thing and got a lot of people who were using iMovie professionally really mad. “Well I was able to create all these fiddly bits and make iMovie work the way I wanted it to, and now I have to upgrade to Final Cut, I'm throwing this table over. As iMovie progressed throughout the years, they tried to make it this wonderful scaling middle ground. Where you could come in as a complete bare bones brand new user and make a movie in iMovie in a couple hours, or you could come in as somebody who's had some familiarity with iMovie or video editing and get quite a lot out of an iMovie project. It's a little bit of re-jiggering the brain. And in a way, especially if you take iMovie and Final Cut, they both use and implement similar non-linear editing tools, so once you've capped out where iMovie stops, you can jump over to Final Cut with very little abrasion Whereas the old version of iMovie, once you stopped understanding iMovie once you jumped to Final Cut it was like jumping from a kiddy pool to the middle of the Atlantic ocean. Where it's like “I think I know how to swim but all my limbs are different and the temperature is different.” A whole new experience. Speaking as someone who did that in the late nineties, early two thousands, it was very difficult. I think what they've been doing with iMovie and pages and the iWork Suite, now what they're doing with photos is creating this application that can serve the needs of multiple users, however there is going to be an end cap there. We talked about serving multiple masters. Apple is going to serve the majority of its consumer banks. If the majority of people buying macs and using their stuff are newer to prosumer users, they're going to have to serve that base because that is the base that is giving them money. Conversely, they have their pro markets, but the pro markets are unfortunately small potatoes in respect. Which is not to say that I think apple doesn't care about its professional market or want their professional market to come back in the future. When you lay out a time line of “we have these 20 projects currently in development, which are top priority” iMovie was developed before final cut, and final cut had the space to be reinvented. I don't think aperture had the same kind of space. They made this decision to transfer over everything to cloud based photography, around the same time so it was basically “we can't really keep supporting Aperture because then we'd need to tear out a whole hunk of aperture and kind of cram in the cloud photography aspect and it wouldn't work with what we're trying to do with reinventing photos, so we might as well tear down the entire building at once, put out this product, and see what happens.” That's speculation on my part, it's to be determined whether apple will ever resuscitate or reinvent aperture, or whether they just want to keep photos around as core product and have third parties augment the things you would find in a higher class, professional editing and management app.
Leo: One of the issues that comes up, and this is I think what pros care a lot about is support for the RAW formats Especially as new cameras come out. Adobe keeps us up to date with Adobe Camera Raw which updates whenever Light Room is updated. I always see these camera Raw updates being pushed out but if they are no longer supporting pros, I wonder are they supporting Camera Raw?
Serenity: Yeah, absolutely, RAW is supported both locally and in iPhone
Leo: and they will continue to update it.
Serenity: Absolutely. When I say that Photos app is not a pro app, I don't necessarily mean that it's just a newbie app. It's very much a prosumer app.
Leo: I think a lot of people, even pros would use this for the kind of quick and dirty stuff.
Serenity: Yeah absolutely.
Leo: I watch Lisa, who is really an accomplished photographer, but not a pro. Very serious about her photography. She still does iPhotos all the time, and I think that something like Photos will actually suit her, and the raw mass of users will become more serious about photography, but don't yet want to spend the time and energy to learn Light Room. And it will suit them, it will do almost everything you need to do.
Leo: Andy, you're in that group, you're speaking as someone who absolutely loves aperture, who is thinking “Should I stick with what I love, and I know how to use it, so I'm not happy by Apple dropping support for aperture, but nonetheless you look at Photos, you realize it's rebuilding Photos for the way that people actually use Photos these days. They're not doing stuff for print, or to hang on the wall, they're really all about taking a picture on their phone, making it look more interesting however you want to define that and then put it in a place where they can show it off to other people, usually in a digital format And this is brilliant for that in terms of management, in terms of making sure that wherever you shoot, you edit it on your desktop and you don't have to resync anything, the next time you look at it on your phone it will have all those edits to it. Also most people just want to answer the problem “How do I make this picture look better.” And in aperture my instinct is... I shot at the Lincoln Memorial at dusk a couple months ago, and the white balance is pretty good except for there's one light that's a mercury light with a green tint, I know how to dig deep into aperture's controls to say “whatever is this shade of green, turn into this instead” most people aren't looking for that, they just want to make it look better. And if you look at the way Apple has changed the interface, it's deceptive, kind of like what Serenity was talking about. You think that they've just made a brightness slider, which we've seen for the last fifteen or twenty years. It's kind of like how a car has active suspension. Where you tell the car you want to turn sharply to the right, but there's a computer in the car that knows you didn't mean that you want to spin around three times and crash into the guard rail. It automatically decides, how to execute that in a way to please the user. So now if you decide I want to make this brighter, you slide it to the left but Photos understand you didn't mean that you want it so bright the entire sky is bleached out white and we can't see any of the clouds. It makes all these intelligent deductions that are going to make people really happy. And it's also important to note that this is not just a new version of iPhoto. Apple really is completely creating a brand new architecture for how all of apple products deal with photos. And this is just the first articulation of that entire system. And just like with Final Cut, there are a lot of things that Final Cut X.. I can't remember whether it's ten or “X”
Serenity: Ten (laughter)
Andy:Thank you. I remember someone correcting me about “You're saying mac OS “X” when you should be saying “Ten” But anyway. Just like when Apple reinvented that, it didn't do half of what it does right now, and it wasn't because the pro users complained so long and so hard that they were forced to reverse decisions, it's because the 1.0 they released is what they were able to release at that time, and there was always a desire to extend and expand it, and fill in some of these gaps. I'm sure that a year from now or two, this is going to be a lot more capable than it will be when it ships to consumers.
Leo: Do you think apple is thinking “maybe we should do middle?” Of course I look at Garage band to Logic pro, and Logic Pro is pro, and Final Cut is Pro, but do you think apple is thinking to leave the high end to the third parties and make good quality consumer products that take you all the way to prosumer? Or does apple still really want to own the pro market.
Andy: I don't think they need to control the market.
Leo: I would think that creating an ecosystem where many companies can contribute, rather than have Apple be the only source of pro. And that was Steve Jobs who said “Screw you Adobe, we're going to own the high end, right? And again, we're in the post-Jobs era.
Andy Ihnatko: And the popularity of Apple´s answer to Photoshop is, you know, it´s all around us. The only problem with that, though, whoever wants to make the next version, the thing that replaces Aperture, is now going to be competing with Adobe, and Lightroom is a wonderful app but it has the limitation that it is multi-platform, which means that it is never going to be one of those instinctive Mac OS apps that takes advantage of every one of these really wonderful API´s across iOS and Mac OS, so the pro tool that is going to be available to the people who really are that serious about photos, is always going to be such an easy way to switch from one platform to the other because if somebody comes up with a really good multipurpose tablet, for Windows or if there is just a solution that they like more there´s a future of Windows 10 or Windows 11 they like, the problem of what the hell do I do with my photo wiper? it will not be an issue because this is multi-platform just simply move it from one place to another because it´s on the cloud, they don´t have to bother at all. So, I do think that Apple´s not as quite as aggressive about saying hey we make things that everybody can use. I think they really are saying we know we´re our best and butter or maybe less snarky way of saying it is, we know what we do exceptionally well, we know the products that we make that people really respond to very strongly, we´re going to pursue that very very aggressively, we´re not going to ignore pro users but, if we can make our target audience happier and limit ourselves to just not shouting out , not shutting down responses and opportunities for the pros, that´s what we´re going to do. The pros will figure things out, because that´s why they´re pros.
Leo: And I think you nailed it Serenity. As long as they continue to support raw image in the operating system, that´s great, that means I can import my pictures from my Sony A7 and it reads it no problem. And then they allow, we will watch with interest to see what photos allows, but they allow plug ins. That really gives you a lot of head room for prosumers, and if someone wants to use Lightroom or if someone wants to come along and create a lightroom like program, I think almost all the professional photographers I know use Macs.
Serenity: Yeah, it´s a good platform, for some reason there´s been this, I mean I personally prefer Apple laptops to PCs but there has been sort of a movement just among creative professionals for OS10 and Mac really did.
Leo: And for photography the screens are better, I think the 5k iMac is a photographers dream, I would say. Just seems that´s where the market is going. I don´y know you well enough Mike to know, are you into photography?
Myke: No, that´s why I´ve been so quiet. I´m very consumer when it comes to photography, which is why the photos app is interesting to me because it´s kind of the main interface that I have with photos is my iOS photo app, that´s what I´m used to seeing the most because that´s the camera that I use. The thing that interests me the most about all of this is the photos in the cloud and how that´s going to work. I think there´s a lot of interesting parts of how something like that could work. No company has really been able to do it sustainably at scale. Like all of the start-ups that open, like ever picks and there was one, picture life just got acquired, no company has been able to do it successfully and sustainably. In theory Apple could do it right? because they could subsidize the cost with the hardware.
Leo: You know who does it really well? Is Google.
Myke: Yeah they do.
Leo: Do you use Google plus for your iPhone backups and stuff?
Myke: I backup all my photos to DropBox, which is not a great solution, it´s just a backup. So, I´m interested.
Leo: So let´s talk about the iOS integration with photos, because, you touched on this too, Serenity on your imore review. We already have photos in iOS 8 but, uh, it´s going to gain new superpowers?
Serenity: Yeah, well I think that the biggest draw to having a photos app on the Mac is integration and wireless syncing between your Mac and your iOS devices. If you take a lot of photos on your iOS device and you´re somebody who takes photos with the dslr like I am, like I think a lot of people, still, this allows you to kind of combine those libraries and have those libraries at your fingertips at a glance. You don´t have to worry anymore in theory about connecting your phone to your Mac, syncing the very specific album that you want to showcase when you’re on the road and then also having to deal with managing your camera roll, backing up your camera roll, making sure no pictures get lost. In theory everything should work seamlessly, so whether you take photo on your iOS device or on your Mac, whether you delete a photo on your Mac or iOS device, whether you add an album on your Mac or your iOS device, everything gets synced, everything is working in tandem with each other. Now in the beta, that´s not a hundred percent true there´s definitely some corks with albums right now and everything´s not syncing perfectly, but again, it´s a developer beta. I´m not surprised things aren´t working magically, but, they´re pretty close, they´re about 85% there I´d say, to the point where, again I mean we´ve seen Apple do this with photo stream. We know that Apple has the ability to at least sync the last thousand photos without too much trouble and they haven´t had a lot of major bugs with that, so it´s just a matter of them being able to intelligently manage your library between iOS and Mac and sync the photos together and make sure they aren´t duplicated or missed information, lost information. I think that´s the big key in what Mike was talking about a little bit, all the startups, everything else. My big concern was always, well I want to upload my photos to the cloud, I want to backup, but I also want to make sure that I don´t lose them or that they don´t accidentally disappear into the cloud or accidentally duplicate 3,000 photos and then I have to go through and clear them out automatically. So there´s that and then there´s also the fact that Apple´s managing space intelligently on both your iOS devices and your Mac, where it´s pulling down a percentage of your photos, both on your mobile devices and your desktop devices. But a percentage relative to how much free hard drive you have. It´s not like, oh I have to store 100 gigabytes of photos locally and then take up all of my hard drive space. It´s okay, you have 60 gigabytes free on your hard drive, we´re going to use 20 gigabytes for photos, and if you use up more of your hard drive, that space will shrink and will keep everything else in the cloud but with local preview so you can figure out, oh you know tiny little pics, pictures that you can blow up, and if you want to edit it, it seamlessly pulls it down from the cloud and says, here you go, here´s this photo, as soon as you edit it, it goes to your iOS device.
Myke: That sounds like a good function. So you´re not taking up all your hard drive space, that is what in turn terrifies me. Yeah well it´s the idea that even if it doesn´t look like it is, there´s like, the system is deciding what it thinks I should have. And if there are problems with the backup, then what? Like there´s nothing to say Apple can´t do this, but if they can´t do this, and this is the system that they´d take us down. That is a potential minefield.
Andy: My difficulty, there are a few difficulties with Apple as I perceive them. One of them is that they´re really, really good if you´re the kind of user that they imagine you to be, if you´re not the kind of user you imagine them to be, that´s where you have the potential to have some bad experiences. And I like the fact that you´re getting a terabyte of storage, that´s enough for a couple hundred thousand photos at the very least. But the first time that there´s a really important picture, and we´re not talking about a product shot of an Apple roll out, I´m talking about like the last Christmas I had with a family member before they died, the first time I can´t find that, and that´s the last time I ever use that service again. And I think a lot of people are going to be on the same boat. This is a really, really high degree of difficulty for Apple to execute.
Myke: Yeah because every time you notice something lost in your photo library, the things that you notice that are lost are the important ones. The unimportant pictures you don´t notice that they´re gone. And every single time this happens to someone, it´s a disaster for that person. Like, it´s the thing that needs to be tackled to advance us further into the cloud, but it´s a really dangerous one to try and get right, must be extremely difficult and I´m sure it´s why they´re spending billions of dollars on more data centers to store all of these photos.
Leo: Most recently converting that sapphire plant to a data center for 2 billion dollars.
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Let´s talk a little more about Beats. One of the questions everybody has been asking is if Apple rebrands Beats, redesigns Beats, the streaming music service. Do they put it on Android or do they just make it for iPhone? Lisa Eadicicco who is writing for Business insider says Apple is reportedly working on an Android app, actually she´s quoting Mark Gurman. I´m just trying to keep Mark out of the conversation.
Myke: Impossible, it´s impossible.
Leo: Mark even has a new picture of Dre and Jimmy Iovine wow! And Eddie Cue looking very much like a mobster in that picture. If they rebrand this, yes, they will of course, according to Mark Gurman, do an Android app, they´re not going to get out of that market, although, if, yes, I guess you have to right? If you want to have a music service that reaches everybody you can´t leave half of the world out.
Serenity: Yeah, I mean specially because Beats has the customer base already, it maybe something that Apple wants to dissolute, but we have iTunes for Windows, like it´s not a
Leo: Remember that was a fight though. Jobs did not want to do a Windows versions of iTunes.
Serenity: It was a fight, but once it happened, they were very grateful to do it because that´s one of the main reasons the iTunes music store grew so fantastically. Like the Mac market at that point was minuscule, was tiny. It would´t have sold all of those, all of those songs but with Windows they managed to do that. So, I´m not surprised at all to hear that Apple´s developing potentially an Android app. I mean I feel like Apple´s probably developed a lot of Android apps that have never seen the light of day, being like, hey, let´s see if this makes sense, let´s see if that makes sense. At the end of the day, there´s probably some executive saying: No, sorry, we´re not doing that, throw it away. Let it never see the light of day.
Leo: I´m very sorry to say, you Windows phones users, Apple has no plans, according to Gurman, to do a Windows phone version. Even though Beats was available on Windows phone.
Myke: The thing that I find very interesting about this in the way that Mark has reported it, is that Apple are not actually planning on rebranding Beats. Like they are going to create another set of applications, that takes from Beats, and takes from iTunes and will become this new Apple music streaming service. He talks about how you can import your playlists and your library into this new app. It´s just very interesting to me that they´re creating another brand, and they may potentially get rid of the Beats music brand, which is I think is another issue. But, it´s very peculiar to me, that they´re going down this route, we´re going to create something completely different, we´re going to create an iOS app and an Android app.
Leo: According to Gurman, it´s not going all that well, he said, as one source told us that, quote the Beats integration is not going so well and another source said development of a new service has been a mess. Another source warned, the significant employee departures from Apple´s services divisions could be in sight, lack of clarity from Apple executives over the direction of the project has put the timeline in jeopardy. So, we shall see. It´s not like the world is clamoring for a new music service. There are plenty and there are more coming out all the time as Apple pauses and works on this.
Andy: But, it´s so clearly where everybody is going. I mean, there´s so many topics in tech ware, you realize that the people you´re making money from now, they´re going to get older, they´re going to die. And the service that you have is completely irrelevant to the people who are now 10, 11, 12, 13 years old, in a few years they´re going to have like good paying jobs and no kids, which means lots of money to spend on discretionary items and so you got to have a service where that´s going to speak to those people.
Leo And of course someday it´ll be available in the UK, Myke. But you have Spotify, right?
Myke: Yeah, but so do you now. We did have it for a long time.
Leo: But I would argue that Spotify, Audio, what are the choices in the UK?
Myke: We have Spotify and Audio and then Deezer.
Leo: Deezer does high quality as well. I can´t remember, do they own Tidal? Or is Tidal separate? Because Tidal is the new cd based streaming service, cd quality streaming service.
Myke: Isn´t that the one that Jay Z just bought?
Leo: Jay Z just bought it?
Myke: Yeah I´m sure Jay Z bought a music streaming service and I think it was Tidal.
Leo: It must be nice to have so much money. Tidalhi5.com. I´ve been listening to Tidal, I don´t know, you could argue who knows the difference between cd quality and mp3. Jay Z owns this? Wow I like Tidal, I really do. But these are all the same, by the way they use Apple lossless on iOS, flac on everywhere except iOS. Hum, interesting. It´s hard to differentiate these days.
Myke: It´s catalog basically.
Leo: But they´re all roughly the same, aren´t they? It´s creation in discovery, and that´s what Beats is all about. You make that sentence, I want to listen to dub step while jamming on the golf course with Jay Z and then it will give you something.
Serenity: Yeah, what i really like about Beats, I bet we´re probably going to say the same thing Myke, the personal playlist that their staff are creating basically
Leo: But Audio does a great job with that, Spotify has….
Myke: They´re not as good. They´re really not as good. Beats has an entire editorial staff that looks after this sort of stuff and they create excellent playlists. Even , they do some, they analyze what you´re listening to and they suggest like a starter playlist for certain bands, like oh we can see you like a turn at rock, here´s a starter playlist for the White Stripes, which is a band that we think you might like. And then they have like deep cuts, like the best album tracks and stuff like that. Thay have really, really great playlists.
Andy: They administer the local before the general anesthesia.
Leo: So Jay Z bought Tidal and WiMP, which are both run by a Swedish company called Aspiro AB. Wimp is in Norway. It´s only available in Norway, Denmark, Sweden, Germany and Polland. And in the US and the UK as Tidal. I like Tidal but it´s $20 bucks a month, It´s twice as much. Apple also rumored to say to be launching the new service, whatever they call it., for less than the $10 that everyone else is charging.
Myke: Seven right? Or something like that I think.
Leo: They floated 5, but then you watch the Grammys on Sunday and basically there was a, you know, a 10 minute segment devoted to, screw you thieves, stop stealing our music, and we´re going to march in DC, and we´re going to make sure congress helps.
Andy: I thought the subtext there is, yeah, we´re never going to let Sgt. Pepper again to the public domain, so you may as well stop even asking about that.
Leo: One of the, well they tipped the hat to 2 artists who have been in the forefront here, The Turtles, and of course The Turtles sued because the streaming music services were using loopholes and copyright law that let them have anything pre, or they said, let them have anything pre 1972 royalty free. Turtles sued and they said, and a tip of the hat to Taylor Swift, what is Taylor Swift famous for? Pulling her album off Spotify. So it´s pretty clear that they, at least from the point of view, and by the way, lots of shots of artists in the audience going yeah, yeah. The music industry is clear that they just basically say anybody who screws with us, we´re going to screw you. And it´s just not piracy, it´s streaming music, it´s Spotify, and we´re going to go to congress to make sure that doesn´t happen.
Myke: Like, don´t let your customers choose, just don´t allow that.
Andy: There´s such weakness in the way they´re running their business now. Now, if, the. It´s still terribly unlikely you´ll become a success as a musician, that thing has never changed. but now, you can become a really big success as a musician not by getting a record deal but by simply having a Youtube presence, you can have, there´s people that you´ve never heard of , who are not even allowed to park cars at the Grammys, who have tens of millions of Youtube channel subscribers, who can sell things directly to these people, and they can make, they can make almost as much money that way as a success as you could by having an actual record deal. And so this is why a lot of these groups don´t want their music on Spotify,. Because why would I settle for getting a fraction of a penny for every one of my fans, when I can just have them, I can just talk to them directly and they´ll be happy to give me $5 bucks for a whole album, or $20 to $30 dollars for a concert ticket. You look at the way that Spotify is streaming, revenue breaks down and it´s like, wow, why would you want to? How does this work out for you as a performer?
Leo: Well it´s a discovery thing. You could make the same argument, why would I ever want to be on radio? And by the way, that´s the whole issue, they don´t want another radio. Ha, ha, ha. We got radio, we don´t need another radio. But that´s how kids, kids don´t listen to the radio! Come on!
Andy: They like to share their music with other people. I keep thinking that the reason why spottily is such a hit isn´t because a minimal amount of money and then you get all you can eat, is that it´s so easy to say this song is awesome, here you should listen to it. here is the entire track, and you can do that by sharing a Spotify link. If you have another system where you yourself are deciding to put this on another music service or Band Camp or SoundCloud, why do you need to sign a contract with Spotify? Why do you need to suffer with the new music terms that Google is putting Youtube musicians under? It seems like a system that´s close to the point where either each, this big herd of musicians starts to break apart and scatter to every hill and dale where the music industry can´t really make any money off of them, or they figure out a way to make this herd happy and get them to stick together so they can get their 10 to 20%.
Leo: I mean, I´m watching the Grammys and I´m thinking it´s just a bunch of guys, who run labels, trying to make sure that their profits are protected by Congress. So there was a study. Ernst & Young did a study on streaming systems. They studied Deezer and Spotify. Get this. Because, by the way the CEO of Pandora and I think it was Spotify both who say, we pay a lot of money, billions every year in royalties. where does it go? Well, 45.6% goes to the artists record label. The streaming service gets about 21%, only about a 5th of the revenue, less than Apple gets, I might add. 17% taxes, songwriters and publishers 10%. The artists? 6.8%. 6.8%. So when Taylor Swift, and this is why it really annoys me the record labels are co-opting Taylor Swift. Taylor Swift says, well I´m not going to be on Spotify if i get so little. it´s not Spotify you need to complain to Taylor! Your label is stealing from you, as they have ever since God invented record labels.
Myke: Well those percentages might be a bit different for Taylor Swift. I´m sure she has a different deal with her label. Surely. But the point does remain, she will always be getting a fraction of a fraction percent.
Leo: Maybe she has a better contract for relationship. But the point is we don´t care about Taylor Swift per se, we care about the music industry, actually we don´t care about the music industry we care about musicians. As listeners we want to make sure that they make a living and they continue to create great music for us. It´s pretty clear from day 1, the record labels have not been the best way to do it, thank goodness there´s the internet, you don´t need your label anymore. These guys are just trying to rip you off. It seems so appalling, this speech that they gave and got these artists going yeah, yeah, yeah. We´re going to go to Congress to make sure that our crap business model is protected.
Myke: Who are they saying that to? Like the audience, the people?
Leo: Well that´s what´s annoying. Who´s watching the Grammys? Their listeners, the fans, the people who love music.
Myke: So don´t listen to our music, buy our music. You don´t want to buy it? Well there you go.
Serenity: It´s ridiculous.
Leo: We´re going to make sure our Congress protects us from you, you scum! Alright, I´m sorry. I got a little heated there.
Andy: You´re speaking truth to power, directly to the man, that´s why we respect you.
Leo: You got to fight the powers of p. Uh, Swift is doing alright. Is doing alright, apparently it is being widely adopted and a number of big companies, American Airlines, Duolingo, Getty Images, have all taken to Swift, say their development productivity has gone up, there are fewer bugs in apps, It´s interesting because Swift is still not done, in fact they just gave us a new version of Swift that adds additional features, it´s in beta. But it looks like Swift was perhaps the right thing to do. You see, we´ve shown this graph from RedMonk before, as Swift moves up the popularity, the x axis on this is polarity and GitHub, the y axis is stack overflow conversations, it´s actually pretty linear, it´s interesting and Swift is right up there. Still Objective C is still more popular, but Swift has been moving up very, very rapidly. We should´ve mentioned this last week, I know iMore wrote about it, Stanford has released, they do every year, they do an incredible iTunes U course on developing for iOS, their newest version developing iOS 8 apps with Swift. And it´s free on iTunes U. According to RedMonk, adoption of Swift has been essentially unprecedented. And if you are Swift developer you probably already have the new X code, which delivers the newest version of Swift to you. This is, I find this fascinating because it´s a language that you can only use to develop for iOS.
Serenity: Yeah, it´s very narrow right now. But at the same time it´s kind of incredible Apple basically put its foot down and said, you know what? We´re going to create our own language for iOS. We are that certain that Objective C is over and done. I mean Objective C is really just, built on top of C. So being able to tear that all down and say, alright we´re going to start from scratch and we´re going to build a clean, simple language, and you know, I am not a hardcore iOS developer, I have one test project in Swift, so I can´t say much about whether it´s an easier language to use than Objective C. But I mean from, statistically it seems like, people seem to be digging it. And the documentation on the language, the free stuff available from Apple, and the stuff that Stanford´s putting together, is really fantastic for people who want to learn.
Leo: Yeah. Compiler improvements in Swift 1.2, more stable, faster. I didn´t know this but you couldn´t do incremental builds before, which is kind of a, for most developers a must to speed up the code compile run cycle. In the past, I guess had to recompile everything, now you only recompile files that have changed. Executables are running faster. in fact, Apple´s claiming, and I haven´t seen anybody dispute this, that Swift runs much faster than Objective C. Which is great, considering it´s kind of an interpreted language. And there are some new features they´re adding. And this is one of those things that some experts have said, well I don´t want to adopt a language that isn´t set.
Andy: Yeah, Dale said that, on twitter, I´m going to troll Swift 2 is out saying, nice looking language you got there, and then move along with my business. Developers usually have like a wide range of tools that they work with. They don´t just master one language, they master a whole bunch of languages, and when you put something, I´ve been talking to a lot of them about Swift and a lot of them are really, really interested in it because they like the way, they like it´s attitude toward development. A lot of them are like, I can either spend X hours of the week learning this brand new language or I can spend X hours writing software. And I´d much rather be writing software than doing that.
Leo: Silver is apparently a cross platform compiler for Swift. That will allow you to write Android and the hotly demanded Windows Phone apps.
Andy: I don´t think they´re down quite enough, I think you can still kick them a little bit more.
Leo: I´m sorry.
Andy: It´s a lovely phone, it´s a lovely operating system.
Leo:I love it! I love my 1520 I´m just frustrated because I would love to see,you know, I can´t use it because it´s the. Google has just decided to kill it, you know, just put it out of its end. So, um, Silver is a Swift language front end for the elements compiler. Elementscompiler.com. So, I don´t know how well it works, it´s not out yet, beta is coming. Does not support Cocoa for touch which is a little odd.
Andy: I think it´s interesting to see how well this is going to progress. Well Apple has a certain amount of, a lot of control over their developers because the app store is the only vector deploying software. So they can at some point say, yeah, we´re not going to let you deploy your software unless it supports APIs, and so there´s always that possibility that after Swift gets off the ground they can say, 2, 3, 4 or 5 years later that, ok now we´re not going to be accepting any app that is not written in Swift. i don´t know how they would enforce that, it´s just another note about how interesting the relationship between Apple and its developers are right now.
Leo: You want to take a look at the Swift app, the gettty images has released something called Stream, app for iOS and OSX written in Swift, let´s you search the Getty images portfolio, that´s pretty cool. I think this is exciting, American Airlines is using it for their app, which is part of a passbook . Both of these shops did a lot of Objective C coding, LinkedIn is using Swift in its slideshare app, so uh, Duolingo, I love Duolingo, their test center, which is a companion app is written in Swift.
Myke: I´m surprised to see this amount of adoption in companies of this size.
Serenity: This quickly too.
Myke: Yeah, like if you´re saying, oh, like Bob the guy that makes the app for checking your car location, is using it, sure he is, he´s giving it a go. But, for it to be used by large companies right now, like, specially, American Airlines, that´s the American Airlines app, like, all of the other companies, like, it´s a companion app, but no, this is like the full on, this is the app, the only app we have. It´s quite a big bet. I wonder if maybe Apple´s been in their ear a little bit. And do us a favor maybe, we´ll let you look at the Apple watch a little bit earlier or something. But whatever the reasons why they´re doing it, it´s very interesting if they are.
Leo: Finally, Danny Boyle´s Steve Jobs biopic, we know, we talked last week, it´s been shooting in Cupertino at the Flint Center. Now has been given a release date for Fall of this year, Aaron Sorkin wrote it, Michael Fassbender plays Steve Jobs. Seth Rogen Steve Wozniak. It will open October 9th. But be careful, because Kidnap with Halle Berry is going to open, Buena Vistas coast guard film The Finest Hours with Chris Pine, and warner Bros hotly anticipated Vacation reboot, all on October 9th, so, I think it´ll do alright. That´s exciting. can´t wait to see it, and I can´t wait to pan it if it doesn't live up to our high standards.
Andy: We´ll have to put the comic book iFilter on all of our microphones to say, first of all Steve Wozniak did not … In 1976 Steve Wozniak was still part time employee at the Hewlett factory, he should still not have his VW microbus because it was sold in 1975.
Leo: By the way now, Chevy Chase is not in the National Lampoon Vacation reboot, I´m sorry. Maybe he´ll , he should have like a bit part, like the gas station attendant. So, that you know, you can go, Oh that´s Chevy.
Andy: He could be like the stumble bum Jean Louis Gassée.
Leo: Oh, Glen says he is right? He´s not going to be the lead though. He plays Clark? Rusty Griswold takes his kids on a vacation so grandpa Clark is still around. And Beverly D´Angelo is still in it, she´s grandma. Wow. I´m glad they stayed together. Because there was a little hit and miss a while there. Yeah, the Vegas vacation, right? Who can forget? P.S. Jobs says the Vacacion reboot will definitely outearn the Jobs movie. Yeah, there´s a lot, all of a sudden the chairmans going crazy about the Vacation movie, maybe they´re right. Dividing the nerd vote is a very risky thing to do.
Andy: That´ll be a great topic for discussion. Do we think that the Steve Jobs movie is better because it got more market share or because it generated more revenue?
Leo: Well have more with our guests from Relay.FM Myke Hurley. Serenity Caldwell from iMore.com and of course Andy Ihnatko from the Chicago Sun Times. Our show today as always brought to you by our good buddies at Personal Capitol. Personal Capitol is a very cool idea, in fact, I first found out when I interviewed their founder Bill Harris, it´s got to be more than 2 years ago now on triangulation, actually Bill and I are going to have dinner on Friday, I´m looking forward to seeing him. A clever idea, they decided that there should be a better way to keep track of your investments. You know we have lots, and lots, lots of different accounts for our money. You know our bank account, our credit card account, our investment accounts, our mortgage. They´re all on different web pages hard to figure out. So the first thing Personal capitol did, which I thought is great, is put together this great financial dashboard, which is absolutely free by the way. You go there, take a few minutes to sign up, and now you have a single page that tells you exactly where you stand. You can use it for budgeting but you can also use it to keep track of your retirement. Whether you´re paying too much in mutual fund fees, or 401k fees, that´s actually shaving years off your retirement, it´s really useful and it´s absolutely free. And then they added, which is so great, you can get financial investment advice as well from their registered investment advisors. And this is a great service too, If you´re eligible, they´re going to offer you an additional hundred dollars for every hundred thousand dollars that you deposit in investment accounts at Personal Capitol. Up to 10 thousand dollars cash in your pocket . So you get wealth management, both passive management where you watch on the screen, and if you wish, active management. Schedule your free 101 investment consultation with Personal Capitol today. This is a limited time offer,so do it now. With their award winning financial app you´ll be able to monitor your income your spending, the performance of your investment in real time, on a single easy to read screen, that´s absolutely free and then you can also invest smarter using the advice from their registered investment, advisor. it´s really great. Highly recommended. I´ve been very happy I know you will too. Go to Personal Capitol.com right now. PersonalCapital.com/macbreak, set up your free account, and for a limited time if you qualify, Personal Capital will give you a hundred dollars for every one hundred thousand you deposit. Up to $10,000. That´s PersonalCapitol.com/macbreak. We love them, and we know you will too.. Andy Ihnatko, your pick of the week my friend. Oh Andy, your muted.
Andy: Sorry about that. I had to leave the room to get my pick, which was in my laptop because I use it so much. It´s the Compass 2 iPad stand by Twelve South. Which has been around for a while. I came late to the church with the Compass stand because it was a $40 thing and I was so burned out on iPad stands between stuff that I get sent and stuff that I bought, it´s like I have a stand for every dish that I got in the entire kitchen. But Oh man, this is just a beautifully put together object. When it´s folded up it is this really heavy like steel sort of object, but then when you unfold it, it turns into this, and then this, and then this, and it becomes this absolutely rock steady stand, that is both beautiful and also it won´t wobble, it won´t tear or anything like that. It also has a clever design where you can fold, flip out this kick stand here and actually use it flat like that so that it holds it at a comfortable typing angle. And then when you´re done it just folds down to nothing. It even comes with this nice little like a padded case, which you can also use to clean your iPad screen with. It´s not the cheapest stand by any measure but you can buy the original Compass for about $20 bucks now. The new model is adjustable so it works with the iPad mini as well, so that´s $40 bucks. If I had had one of these in my hands like 2 years ago, 3 years ago, I definitely would´ve just bought it because it´s just a beautiful, you have such appreciation for such a beautiful object. Earlier in the show I said that the iPad air 2 is like the prettiest and the most Applest device that Apple´s ever made, and maybe with the most beautiful tech object on sale right now. You kind of feel like you want to spend the extra $20 or $25 bucks for a stand that´s just as beautiful, and it is so small that you could just toss this into any case you have and you´ll never be without it, so, high recommendation. I love it. I´m probably going to buy a second one so that, for me the highest recommendation I can give something, for an object like this is, not only do I use it all the time, do I buy one for both my iPad bag and for my laptop bag, so I make sure I never have to be without it no matter what I´m leaving the house with, and this definitely passes this test.
Leo: You know what also I like about it? It would work with almost any size iPad. So you can use the current iPad Air retina mini, but they came out with a 12 inch that would probably work right?
Andy: Yeah, it works with everything. I got a bunch of tablets around the office like for testing any given time and anything, it´ll work for a cookbook, it´ll work for pretty much everything you got going. It´ll work as a picture frame, maybe an expensive stand for a picture frame, but, it´s just so flexible.
Leo: About $40 bucks, yeah.
Andy: Or you can get the old one for $20 bucks but it is not as useful for an iPad mini as the new one is, but either way, my recommendation.
Leo: I´m looking, only going to buy iPad accessories that will fit a 12.9 inch iPad. I´m just.
Andy: This could actually be like an MGM, 1935 movie, like ice pick murderer with this. I have the feeling that unless they, if they can keep the weight on the next iPad under 90 pounds this will be able to support the weight of the next whatever larger iPad air may be coming.
Leo: Myke, do you have a pick for us: I want to pick relay.FM because you go there and you hear shows, how many shows do you do?
Myke: Me personally? I think like 6 or 7. Something like that.
Leo: I do 12 a week! Get going! Get to work! Young people today, I tell you! And it´s not just tech, like I said, pens, which is awesome.
Myke: And gaming, and tech. we´re trying to move into pop culture now as well so, yeah we got , we´re ahead. I do have a pick Leo.
Leo: There it is, the latest shiny, happy people. The pen addict. It´s a TWISBE. Go ahead, your pick of the week.
Myke: We´ve spoken a few times about like services I can´t get access to.
Leo: Ha, ha, ha, How do you get access to those services?
Myke: I use a great, well, um, at a completely different topic, I use an app called Cloak just for secure browsing. So Cloak is a great Mac and iOS app, and basically what it does, it allows you to secure your connection, but it also allows you to spoof your location, for, I don´t know why you´d do that, but you could do that if you wanted to. It has a really great app on the Mac which is a menu bar, has a great app on the iPhone which has to do some complicated things installing some like profiles, but has a really good way of talking you through how to do that and then how to activate the vpn in iOS settings. It has really good pricing, so they have monthly plans for like 2.99 a month. They also have, what I really like, passes, so you can buy a week, a month, or a year so maybe you want to watch a sporting event or something like that, you can buy just like a week pass which is like 3 or 4 dollars, something like that. They can be either bought on the site or bought in the app. It´s, I´ve used a bunch of these apps in the past, and I think Cloak is the easiest one to use, especially if it´s comparing iOS apps, you set up an account your pass goes between both devices. I´m a big fan of it. And considering Netflix just added all of Friends in the US, it´s very useful for me at the moment.
Leo: My daughter, who is 23, never saw Friends, actually I think now gone all, how many? 8,9 seasons?
Myke: Sounds like 10, something like that, could be more.
Leo: She started watching number one, I said my God they were young! Alright Myke, and thank you by the way for being here, I really appreciate it. I know it´s like 3 in the morning in England, so, no it´s not.
Myke: It´s not too bad. Yeah, it´s like 8, 9 o´clock. Again, I really appreciate the invite.
Leo: But, is QI on right now? I don´t want you to miss it.
Myke: There´s a channel in the UK called Dave. Where QI is basically on all day.
Leo: I can´t wait to give up Jeopardy and start watching QI instead.
Myke: It´s all on Youtube, there´s so much to learn. Yeah, It´s not official, but there´s like a horde of people that put those things on there, every episode is on Youtube.
Leo: Oh, so illegal, it´s so good. Serenity Caldwell from iMore.com, what do you got for us today?
Serenity: I don´t have it in hand, unfortunately, but, I´m still going to spouse it´s greatness, regardless. It´s the 10.1 design Mountie. Which has a very strange name, it´s not Canadian. This is a weird little gadget that attaches your phone or your iPad to your laptop. It looks so, I laughed out loud when I saw this the first time. I was like really, this looks, especially because they show it with HBO go and I was like, ok, so you´re going to be watching television while you're working? But you know what, alright, so.
Leo: You could have a twitter stream in there or messages actually would be good.
Serenity: Exactly, messages. If you use something like duet display, you can turn your iPad into a secondary display. What I really love doing actually is using that with my Macbook Air and then sitting on, like a big couch or a chair. It´s ridiculous looking but it works.
Leo: It could be a rear view mirror, if you put a selfie camera on, you´d know who´s over your shoulder.
Myke: Looking at those images it really worries me, like it´s doing to completely rein the center of balance, does it do that? Does it affect like the way the laptops´s balanced? Specially on Air, I imagine you just poke it and the entire thing flips over.
Serenity: On an 11 inch Air with an iPad mini in landscape and an iPad air on landscape, if you tilt the air´s hinge all the way, like all the way back, it tends to rock a little bit. With an iPhone it´s no problem, and that´s only on 11 inch air. I tested it with a 13 inch MacBook Pro and it was rock solid.
Leo: Do you have to buy a different Mountie depending on, one Mountie fits all it looks like.
Serenity: One Mountie fits all, they have, actually I do have the little rubber pieces there.
Leo: I think this is so, and I love 10.1 design. They really are a cool company.
Serenity: So you can see, these little rubber pieces, just snap in and then you just switch out whichever rubber piece you need, for whichever iOS device you have. It´s cool, especially if you´re sitting on the couch. I did not realize how many times I lost my iPhone or needed my iPhone and I was like sitting on it, or somewhere elsewhere when I was working remotely, until I attached it to my computer, I´m like, Oh, this is actually really useful. This is really functional. And on airplanes too, I used it on a flight back from Las Vegas and I found that it was like, it was perfect.
Myke: Just hanging over the tray table of the person next to you, don´t mind that.
Serenity: Not so much with the lengthy but with the long, yeah.
Leo: I´m really, that´s the second thing I´ve bought now. Andy´s stand and I´m buying this clip. And what I like is that they´re all one size fits all. So you just clip anything to my Air: I bet this would work, we should , have you tried it with the 5k iMac? That´s thin enough maybe.
Serenity: Yeah, not with the 5k but I have, I´ve used it with a 20 inch. Not as well as it does with the Mac, it´s a little bit weird with the rubber but it still holds it just fine.
Leo: I´m buying it right now.
Myke: Try clipping the Air to the side of the Mac.
Leo: You´re insane, you´re a madman!
Andy: It´s probably wise for you to buy a second iPad mini just to balance it out.
Serenity: One on each side, like giant iPad mini ears.
Andy : Yeah, you have sort of like a Deadmau5 effect going on. Just for added security, not because you have an older iPad and you want to buy a new iPad. It´s just prudent.
Leo: You should do, Serenity, a series of articles for things you can clip to things using a Mountie. I just ordered one myself. It sounds so cool. You know the idea of doing a FaceTime, the only person I FaceTime with is my mom, but it´s always a problem because I want to do other things when I´m talking to mom, so I´m like, she says why aren´t you looking at me? Oh, sorry Mom, I was distracted look at me, so now I can clip the phone to the iPad there and pretend to look at her, while I´m surfing the net, watching the Netflix movie. Very good. Serenity Caldwell is so wonderful at iMore.com. 8 feet of snow now, that´s okay.
Serenity: More like 7, but we might get 8 by the end of this weekend.
Leo: Wow, wow. I like the new poster you got there. The Melies movie a trip to the moon.
Serenity: Isn´t it great: It´s from Mondo, I think it´s Mondo tees, they´re a company in Austin that does these limited poster prints. i got it at Self Buy, 2 or 3 years ago and I love it. it´s so good.
Leo: One of the original, probably the earliest Sci-Fi movie I would guess.
Serenity: Yeah, It´s fantastic.
Leo: We want to thank you so much for being here Myke, first time, not last time. Myke Hurley is cofounder of relay.FM. He´s on the twitter as @imyke. I´ll be following you as soon as the show ends, and thanks, thanks for tuning in.
Myke: It´s been a real pleasure. Thank you very much.
Leo: We´ll have you back soon. Also thanks to Andy Ihnatko, a regular feature of this show, always appreciated at Chicago Sun Times of course and @ihnatko on the twitter. I didn´t do a pick today except for relay FM But I might mention and a number of people in the chatroom have pointed out that Anki drive which is those cool little cars I gave my son but he never took with him, so I have them, they let you race around the track. They´re smart, you can control them with an iOS device, they are upgrading the tracks, oh no, there´s an ad? Why would they put an ad on an ad? You shouldn´t have an ad on an ad. There it is, They now have, you can now jump your Anki Drives, the cars, I have 4 cars. i got the whole set up.
Myke: Does it work well Leo?
Leo: Yeah, it works great. Henry just doesn´t, you know, my son, he´s just not grateful for all the wonderful things I have. This looks really cool. The original works great.
Myke: So do you control like the speed?
Leo: Yeah, you also have power ups and things you can, you can shoot, virtual shooting. And the cars know that you´re shooting at them. And each car has its own abilities. Kind of more like a video game made into a real, you know, slot car. But there are no slots of course, because it´s all computer controlled. It´s pretty cool. Look at this, I can´t wait to get this new track.
Andy: It´s also the idea that you can race against other cars being controlled by the computer, that they have a sense of where all the other cars are on the track. You´re seeing this formation riding, and it´s kind of creepy in a good way to see that, oh, there´s a ghost car that´s trying to steer around me even though, oh dear, that´s interesting.
Myke: Can you drive them off like on slot car races? If you power them up too much will they fly off the track? Oh, that´s awesome, that´s pretty cool.
Leo: it´s like slot cars without the slots basically. Yeah it´s reliving my childhood so I´m keeping it Henry, you´re not getting it back. I´m getting this track, that looks awesome! Um, Apple´s stock in an all-time high went up $2.30 today. Thanks chatroom for filling us in of an all-time high of $122 and 2 cents. Apple is doomed. Yeah that´s right. Entropy´s going to get you. Also investing $848 million, I think that´s the number to build a solar farm in Monterrey California. So Apple´s busy, busy, busy. And we will give you the results, I think some of this is coming from Tim Cooks speech at the Goldman conference right now. He is speaking right now. Apple will partner with First Solar, to build an $850 million solar energy farm in Monterrey County, California, enough to power 60,000 homes. It´s not their first, they already have 2 in North Carolina and one in Nevada. In fact all of Apple´s data centers, according to Cook, this is actually from his talk at the Goldman conference, are running on renewable energy. Wow. That not only spikes First Solar shares, it spikes Apple shares. Alright, thank you everybody for joining us for Macbreak weekly. Lot of fun, as always. We´ll be back next Tuesday and every Tuesday at 11 am Pacific, 2pm eastern time, 19:00 UTC, or as the Brits call it, our time.
Myke: The true time zone.
Leo: So we were talking to a group of Englanders a couple of weeks ago and I said well its BST and they said no, that´s summer time. Yeah because we call out standard time ST in the US. And I say, well what do call standard time and they said time. I said, well what do you mean? Greenwich mean time, well that´s our time. We´re Greenwich. So there´s no like British standard Time? Yeah I know it´s confusing, so you just call it GMT?
Myke: Yeah GMT British summer time.
Leo: Well that´s what time, for all of our fans in the UK, That´s why we always give out UTC times, thanks for being here, we´ll see you next time, now back to work, because you know what? Break time is over!