Recent Articles By Bryan Chaffin [RSS]

iPhone 7 Plus Ship Times Hold at 3-4 Weeks or Higher

· Bryan Chaffin · Product News

Screenshot Showing iPhone 7 Plus Availability

Wait times for Apple’s iPhone 7 Plus remain at 3-4 weeks or 3-5 weeks, with none showing less than 3 weeks as of this writing. Almost 7 weeks after the initial ship date, that’s an unusual delay for Apple, and the question is why.

Tim Cook's Message to Employees after Election: 'Move Forward Together'

· Bryan Chaffin · News

Apple CEO Tim Cook during Mac

Apple CEO Tim Cook sent a company-wide email to employees Wednesday evening encouraging them to “move forward.” While he didn’t name President Elect Donald Trump or his defeated rival, Hillary Clinton, by name, the theme of the email was that the election shouldn’t divide employees.

ACM 384: Demand for iPhone 7 Plus, AWS2, MacBook Pro

· Bryan Chaffin · Apple Context Machine Podcast

Apple Context Machine Logo

John Kheit guests with Bryan Chaffin to talk about demand for iPhone 7 Plus, for which wait times are still 3-4 weeks. Apple Watch Series 2 has 2-3 week wait times, and MacBook Pros seem to be flying off the shelves. Join them while they explore these topics.

Apple Offers Refurb iPhone 6s/Plus on Apple Store Starting at $449

· Bryan Chaffin · Product News

Screenshot of iPhone 6s Refurb Models on Apple Store Online

Apple began offering refurbished iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus devices on the Apple Store Tuesday. Refurbished iPhone 6s models start at US$449 with 16GB of storage, while 16GB iPhone 6s Plus models start at $529. 64GB iPhone 6s Plus are currently priced at $589.

Ireland to Formally Appeal EU Ruling on Apple Taxes, As Expected

· Bryan Chaffin · Analysis

EU wants €13 billion for back Apple taxes

The Irish government said Tuesday that it will formally filed an appeal against the European Commission’s judgement that Apple owes billions of dollars in back taxes. The move was expected, and the filing later this week will simply be one step of many in the ongoing fight over Ireland’s treatment of multinational corporations.

Analyst Says iPhone SE Was a One-Off for Apple

· Bryan Chaffin · The Back Page

The Apple Crystal Ball

Apple isn’t planning to update iPhone SE, according to well-connected KGI Securities’ analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. If true, it’s hard to understand. There are still people who prefer the smaller iPhone; and, having a current-generation iPhone with a lower price tag helps Apple reach deeper into the market. So why nuke it?

Review: Charge and Listen on iPhone 7 with Belkin Lightning Audio + Charge RockStar

· Bryan Chaffin · Quick Look Review

Belkin Lightning Audio + Charge RockStar with iPhone, EarPods, and Charger

This is a pretty easy review: Belkin’s Lightning Audio + Charge RockStar works. Think of it as a Lightning splitter with a specific purpose. If you’re looking for a way to charge your iPhone 7 or iPhone 7 Plus, or use Lightning headphones and charge an older iPhone or iPad, this is the device for you.

TouchBarDemoApp on GitHub: Run Touch Bar on iPad or macOS Screen

· Bryan Chaffin · Cool Stuff Found

OMG check this out! Some folks have put together two pieces of software that will let (some of) you test out Apple’s new Touch Bar, even if you don’t have a new MacBook Pro! One way is to pull up a virtual bar on your Mac. Fine. Whatevs. No fun. But, the super awesome nerds behind this project also made a way to turn your iPad into a Touch Bar that you can use as a Touch Bar for your Mac! That is so cool! There’s a Crap Tonne™ of caveats, though. For one, you have to get a hold of the specific build of macOS 10.12.1 Sierra that has Touch Bar included. For another, you need to know what you’re doing when it comes to sideloading an app onto your iPad. The project is available on GitHub, at least for now. I haven’t run it yet. Would love to hear from anyone that does. Being able to run TouchBar through my iPad is super awesome delightful.

TouchBarDemoApp on GitHub: Run Touch Bar on iPad or macOS Screen

Brain.fm 1-Year Subscription: $19.99

· Bryan Chaffin · TMO Deals

Brain.fm logo and man listening on headphones

Have you heard of Brain.fm? It streams music designed to help you work, relax, or sleep. Choose which, and you’ll experience an original composition specially generated for that scenario. You can adjust the stream to play for 30 minutes, 1 hour, 2 hours, or indefinitely until you turn it off. We have a deal for a 1-year subscription for $19.99. There are other subscription lengths, too. Check out the deal listing for more info.

PSA: Please Vote

· Bryan Chaffin · Editorial

People in voting booths

Howdy folks. We haven’t messed about too much with the election at TMO, but today is Election Day. That means you should vote. Whomever you support, whatever you think of the choices, you should vote. From local elections to state-level positions, to the Congress, to the President—the ability to vote is one of the greatest gifts we have. Exercise your right to do so. Please.

Adobe Demonstrates Project VoCo, Photoshop for the Voice

· Bryan Chaffin · Cool Stuff Found

I hate labeling this a “cool stuff found.” I mean, it’s cool as &@#%, but it’s scary as all get-out, too. It’s a demonstration by Adobe of Project VoCo, which is sort of like a Photoshop for speech. Watch the video below, but the short version is that Project VoCo can analyzes speech, turns it into text that you  can then rearrange, edit, or even make up new stuff entirely. Seriously, the Adobe engineer typed in words that comedian Jordan Peele didn’t say, and it sounded he said them. That last feature requires about 20 minutes of recorded speech to analyze, but it’s the truly scary part of this software. Talk about not being able to trust video or audio ever again? The engineer demoing the software—which isn’t even close to a shipping product yet—said Adobe was looking for ways to digitally watermark altered recordings so they can be identified, but come on, that’ll get cracked faster than you can say “All hell broke loose.” Anyway, it’s fascinating, impressive, cool, scary, and it’s certainly black magic. I’d love to hear your thoughts.

Uncourage: a Keyring with a Dummy 14-inch Jack to Hold Your Lightning Adapter

· Bryan Chaffin · Cool Stuff Found

It’s called Uncourage, a political statement in the world of Apple, and one that entertains me. Now, unlike a lot of our readers, I’m OK with Apple ditching the headphone jack, but Uncourage might be helpful to many of us. It’s essentially a key ring with a dummy 1/4″ jack. It’s designed for you to attach your Headphone-to-Lightning Apple adapter when you’re not using it so you don’t lose it. That’s clever, and it’s just US$6. The company said it will ship in mid-November.

Uncourage: a Keyring with a Dummy 14-inch Jack to Hold Your Lightning Adapter

HomeSpot Rugged Waterproof Bluetooth Speaker: $29.99

· Bryan Chaffin · TMO Deals

HomeSpot Rugged Waterproof Bluetooth Speaker, carabiner, and plugs

Check out the HomeSpot Rugged Waterproof Bluetooth Speaker, a rugged, weather-proof speaker. It deflects dust, dirt, and water, and it’s coated with a rubberized surface. It will pair to your iPhone, iPad, Mac, or Android device with Bluetooth, and it also supports NFC pairing. You can get this device for $29.99 through our deal.

ROME: Total War for iPad Release Date Set for November 10th

· Bryan Chaffin · Cool Stuff Found

I get giddy when Feral Interactive releases new information about ROME: Total War for iPad. On Monday, the company set the release date for November 10th, meaning Squeeeeeeeeeee! Oh, and there’s a new video, a playing the game on the iPad video. Man, does it look great! ROME: Total War has been a big franchise on Windows and Mac for a long time, and I can’t wait to play it on iPad. It’s $9.99, and it will be here Thursday.

Apple Follows Mystery iTunes 12.5.3 Update with Bonus Mystery iTunes 12.5.3 Update

· Bryan Chaffin · Product News

About iTunes 12.5.3.17

You remember that iTunes 12.5.3 update Apple released a couple of days ago? The one where the patch notes were the same as the patch notes from iTunes 12.5.2? Well good news. There’s a new iTunes 12.5.3 update waiting for you in the Mac App Store. It’s a new build of the same update. And oh yeah, the patch notes explain nothing.

Ivacy VPN 2-Year Subscription: $29

· Bryan Chaffin · Link

Ivacy VPN on iMac, iPhone, and Android

OK VPN fans, we have a deal on a 2-year subscription for Ivacy VPN for $29. With this service you have access to more than 250 servers in more than 100 locations in more than 50 countries. It works across iOS, macOS, Android, Windows, Linux, Raspberry Pi, and many more. You can connect up to five devices at a time. Check out the details on the deal listing.

How to Turn Off Music Auto-Shuffle in iOS 10

· Bryan Chaffin · Quick Tip

Up Next Sheet in Music App in iOS 10.1.1 with Shuffle

Did the Music app in iOS 10 start auto-shuffling your albums? It’s easy to fix, but you have to know where to look. Bryan Chaffin walks you through it.

Plugable Claims New MacBook Pro Doesn't Recognize Some Thunderbolt 3 Docks

· Bryan Chaffin · Product News

A woman using Touch Bar on MacBook Pro

Device maker Plugable said Thursday that Apple’s new MacBook Pro with Touch Bar is incompatible with Thunderbolt 3 docks that use a particular Texas Instrument chip. If accurate, it means at least some early Thunderbolt 3 docks already on the market will not work with Apple’s newest Mac laptop.

Horace Dediu's Take on MacBook Pro and Convergence is a Must Read

· Bryan Chaffin · Cool Stuff Found

Touch Bar Retina MacBook Pro with USB-C ports

Horace Dediu has penned a piece on computers, mobile devices, touch input, and convergence that is a simply put, a must-read. Centered around Apple’s new MacBook Pro and Touch Bar, Mr. Dediu defines the difference between the Mac and Windows platforms as it pertains to the ways they are evolving. I don’t want to rewrite his piece, so I’ll just leave you with this passage and encourage you to read the whole thing: “Which brings me to the question of what it is allowed to be and hence what it is. It cannot take on the role of being the future. That belongs to the touch screen devices. It will not morph into a touch device any more than a teen’s parent will become cool by putting on skinny jeans. What it will do is become better at what it is hired to do.”