Recent Articles By Dave Hamilton [RSS]

Sponsor: AirWatch, Simplify Enterprise Mobility

9:00 AM, Mar. 9th, 2016 · Dave Hamilton · Weekly Sponsorship

This week, The Mac Observer is sponsored by VMware AirWatch. AirWatch is a platform that makes it easy for you to access all your work apps and information from your personal mobile device (yes, folks, that means your iPhone, too!). Visit today to learn how easy it will be for your business to get started with a 30-day free trial and then let AirWatch take care of the rest!

Guide to Who Holds The Decryption Keys for 16 Cloud and Backup Services

11:35 AM, Mar. 4th, 2016 · Dave Hamilton · Dave Hamilton's Blog


As many people are now learning, simply knowing that something is encrypted is not enough. Encryption, like security, exists on a continuum that runs between safety and convenience, and it's important to know where on that continuum your data – and cloud providers – lie. The largest factor in determining the relative security of your encrypted data is knowing who has access to the decryption keys (i.e. who is able to decrypt it... and when?). We made a list to help you out.

Mac App Store Apps May Not Launch Until Ethernet Fix is Applied

2:09 PM, Feb. 29th, 2016 · Dave Hamilton · TMO Quick Tip

If you launch an app you got from the Mac App Store and are greeted with an error dialog that says, "An unexpected error occurred while signing in. Your device or computer could not be verified. Contact support for assistance," you need to apply Apple's Ethernet-related fix regardless of whether or not you intend upon using Ethernet on your Mac.

Find Your Promised and Provisioned Comcast Internet Speeds

1:57 PM, Feb. 11th, 2016 · Dave Hamilton · Cool Stuff Found

Comcast customers are used to seeing items on their bills like "Performance Pro" and "Blast 105" for Internet service, but it's difficult to find out what speeds are advertised with those services. Even more difficult is finding out what Comcast actually provisions your cable modem to allow. Thankfully the folks at DSLReports keep a chart updated with precisely this information. For example, Blast 105 is currently advertised as 105 Mbps down, 10 Mbps up, but modems with this service are provisioned for 131.25 Mbps down and 12.5 Mbps up. Check out the chart for everything.

How To Limit Facebook’s iPhone Background Battery Usage

12:59 PM, Dec. 22nd, 2015 · Dave Hamilton · How-To

The Facebook app is a notorious iPhone battery eater and, despite some attention and updates aimed at solving this problem, it remains so to this day. While it’s simple enough to just remove the Facebook app and access the site in Safari, this leads to missing out on Notifications, Live Photos and other features. Good news: it’s possible to have your cake and eat it, too, with a little bit of understanding and effort.

Apple Music Beta Now Available on Sonos

11:00 AM, Dec. 15th, 2015 · Dave Hamilton · Link

True to their word, Sonos today rolled out version 6.1 of their wireless speaker controller software, adding Apple Music as an option in the beta section. Sonos users will need to opt-in to use Apple Music, but it's a painless process and, based on our testing, works very well. Doesn't feel like beta at all. Read on for instructions.

iPad mini 4 Reflections: Why it’s Time to Upgrade

10:14 AM, Dec. 11th, 2015 · Dave Hamilton · Dave Hamilton's Blog

For the past two months I've been using Apple's new iPad mini 4 and recently I went back to my previous iPad mini 2. Like many iPad mini fans I skipped the iPad mini 3 because all it offered over the iPad mini 2 was Touch ID without any performance boost. The iPad mini 4 changed that, of course, bringing the iPad Air 2's guts and power to the mini form-factor. I wondered, though, does all this new speed – and RAM – matter for daily use? Turns out it does.

Mackie Master Fader v4 Adds Split View & Real Time Analyzer to iPad-Controlled Mixers

10:00 PM, Dec. 9th, 2015 · Dave Hamilton · Product News

Mackie Wednesday released Master Fader version 4, the app used to control their DL-series iPhone- and iPad-controlled mixers. The update adds a slew of new features including real-time analyzers on all outputs, the ability to copy and paste channel settings, split view support for compatible iPads, iPad Pro support, an enhanced iPhone UI and much more. Additionally, version 4 now consolidates the My Fader and Master Fader functionality into one app, making updates easier for people using both iPhones and iPads.