What’s in Your Geek Travel Bag?

4:30 PM, Jul. 9th, 2015 · · Columns and Opinions

GridIt organizer

Dr. Mac has two small mesh bags packed with all the things he likes to have when he travels. In this episode of his long-running Rants & Raves column he shows off a few items he considers essential for his travelling bag(s) of tricks.

Siri Couldn’t Find The Beatles (But Now She Can)

9:25 AM, Jul. 8th, 2015 · · Columns and Opinions

Siri can't find any of the 400+ Beatles songs in Dr. Mac's library. What's up with that?

Dr. Mac encountered his first (and so far, only) problem with Apple Music last week. He asks Siri to play music by The Beatles all the time and she used to respond by playing one of the 467 Beatles tunes in his iTunes library. After updating to iOS 8.4, Siri said the strangest thing when he asked for Beatles music: “Sorry, I can’t find that.” No matter what he tried, Siri insisted she couldn’t find the Beatles, even though he could clearly see 467 Beatles songs in his library. It took days but he did ultimately find a solution that worked for him...  

Falling Sales Suggest Apple Watch Isn’t Resonating with Consumers

9:43 PM, Jul. 7th, 2015 · · Columns and Opinions

Slice Intelligence Apple Watch Chart

Apple Watch sales are on the decline, according to a report from Slice Intelligence via Marketwatch. Based on customer receipts sampled by Slice Intelligence, Apple Watch sales have fallen from 200,000 units per day in the opening week of sales to less than 10,000 per day in late June. Whether a seasonal slowing, a failing of marketing, or worse, a failure of product design and development, that decline suggests strongly that Apple Watch isn't the right device yet.

Apple Stores Are Holding the New MacBooks Captive

5:15 PM, Jul. 6th, 2015 · · Columns and Opinions

The major design feature of Apple's new MacBook is its low weight.  To hold it in one's hand, untethered, is to appreciate the significance of the design. So why shouldn't Apple let customers walk around the store with one and test the keyboard for awhile? John Martellaro makes the case.

Apple Earns a Black Eye for Apple Music

5:00 PM, Jul. 2nd, 2015 · · Columns and Opinions

Any sufficiently large software project will have significant failure points. This is a lesson Apple has steadfastly refused to learn. It's not as if there weren't any warning signs.

Apple TV vs. Roku 3: May the Best Little Streaming Box Win

4:00 PM, Jul. 1st, 2015 · · Columns and Opinions

Apple TV vs. Roku 3

Apple TV is getting long in the tooth, which set Dr. Mac to wondering if there was a better streaming media box available, or if Apple TV, which hasn’t seen an significant update since 2012, was still king of streaming media boxes... 

Apple Updates GarageBand for Mac and iPhone: New Drummers, Apple Music Connect, Force Touch

6:42 PM, Jun. 30th, 2015 · · Columns and Opinions

GarageBand Icons

Apple released GarageBand 10.1 for OS X Yosemite on Tuesday, as well as GarageBand 2.0.7 for iOS 8. Both updates add support for Apple Music Connect, allowing artists to upload content directly to Connect. The Mac version also adds ten new drummers, new patches, 1,000 new Apple Loops, support for Force Touch trackpad (which is currently only available on Apple's new MacBook), and more.

8 Years After Launch, It’s an iPhone World

6:15 PM, Jun. 29th, 2015 · · Columns and Opinions

iPhone Birthday Cake

Apple shipped the first iPhone eight years ago today. It was June 29th, 2007. That's not so long ago, and yet it feels like forever because Apple has made this into an iPhone world. 

Music Just Isn’t Worth What It Used to Be

6:05 PM, Jun. 26th, 2015 · · Columns and Opinions

Music Just Isn't Worth What It Used to Be

How much is music worth? That question has been pushed to the foreground by Apple Music, Taylor Swift, and new cries that Apple is undervaluing artists. Bryan Chaffin says this battle has been brewing for a long time, and he doesn't think some artists will be happy where it leads.