Recent Articles By Dave Hamilton [RSS]
One of the big issues among us watch geeks that are also tech geeks has been merging our desire to continue to wear our favorite analog watch(es) while simultaneously getting smart watch features. Seems the folks at Kairos had the same concerns and have been hard at work concocting the T-Band - a smart band for your existing watch. They've got three models, one of which even features a OMOLED display right in the band for $179. It's just now beginning its Indiegogo campaign but will fund even if they don't hit their $50k goal (but I'm guessing they will).
Occasionally Apple Mail becomes slow and corrupted and simply needs to have its indexes cleaned out and rebuilt. We cover this pretty regularly on Mac Geek Gab and have updated our support article detailing the steps to include every OS up through Yosemite.
When Apple announced iOS 8 at WWDC one feature was met with great applause: SMS Relay. This allows users to send and receive Text Messages (i.e. the "green bubble" messages) on our Macs the same way we've always been able to send and receive iMessages. SMS Relay is made possible by using your iPhone as the conduit between your Mac and the SMS network. Now that you have both iOS 8.1 and Yosemite installed (you must for this to work), there are just a few more steps to follow to activate this, but they're pretty simple.
Spotify announces its upcoming family plans and iOS 8.1 is due out pretty much the moment this podcast stops recording. Two special hosts (and one missing host!) make for this very unique TDO.
Included with the announcement of new iPads yesterday we saw Apple SIM, a multi-carrier-capable SIM card baked into the cellular models of the new devices allowing customer choice of data carriers. There are some limits, of course, mostly that carrier partners thus far only include three US carriers: AT&T, Sprint, and T-Mobile. If you want to use overseas data partners or don't have a new iPad, well, you're out of luck with Apple SIM. GigSky, however, has been allowing this functionality for almost two years, providing a multi-carrier data SIM usable in over 100 different countries, included here in the USA. You simply launch their iOS app and buy whatever data you need right inside the app. In many countries your GigSky SIM will get you 10MB of free data, enough to get a quick glance at your email and, if necessary, buy more data. No more getting off the plane and having to hunt down a SIM. Just head straight to your hotel room and GigSky has you covered. GigSky SIMs cost just US$19.95, and a la carte data options begin at $10. Definitely worth checking out.
Dave Hamilton has been attending Macworld Expo for decades, both as an attendee and then as part of his professional life. He's sad that Macworld Expo is gone, sure, but he's not surprised. In fact, he sees this as an opportunity opening itself up to our market.
Dave Hamilton has kept us all apprised of his decision-making process in choosing his new iPhone model. He's finally settled on the iPhone 6 Plus, but it wasn't nearly as easy a decision as he originally predicted, and he explains why.
Many users of the new iPhone 6 and 6 Plus models are finding it impossible to re-link with Google Voice for voicemail. When entering in the classic **004*1[GV-Number]# sequence users are seeing a "Setting Registration Failed" message instead of the happy success note. Our testing leads us to believe this is a limitation of the new NFC-capable SIMs in the new iPhones. Regardless, Marcel Brown sorted this out and you have two ways you can enable Google Voice on your new phone. First is to call AT&T and have them set up "conditional call forwarding" for you, or you can set up the 3 big use cases all by yourself with some slightly different commands. "234567890" in Marcel's examples would be replaced with your Google Voice number, including area code:
- Call Forward if Unanswered: *61*1234567890#
- Call Forward if Unreachable: *62*1234567890#
- Call Forward if Busy: *67*1234567890#
Set all three of these and you're good to go. To check the status of these enter *#61#, *#62# and *#67# respectively. To deactivate, enter ##61#, ##62# and/or ##67#. Enjoy!
Dave Hamilton has had his iPhone 6 Plus for less than a day and quickly found that this is a new device category for Apple, and not just a larger (or smaller?) version of that which came before it. The size is not the issue. Dave's issue issue is with the apps.
Apple's Family Sharing in iOS 8 is something many users are eager to setup in order to finally deal with the issue of sharing purchased apps (and music and movies and more) with family members. Frustration has set in for some, however, when the setup process informs users that PayPal is not a valid payment option for family purchases. The good news is that you can set PayPal as an option after Family Sharing is setup, at least for now.