Dr. Mac looks at three newish products that may suit your needs—an app-controlled alarm clock; tiny wireless earbuds; and a canless canned air system—but have one or more fatal flaws for him.
If you were planning on picking up Apple’s AirPods wireless earpods this holiday season, ger ready to be disappointed because it looks like they won’t be shipping until January 2017 at the earliest. Apple originally promised AirPods would ship in late October, but has since changed their status to “Currently unavailable” with no projected ship date.
I love deals like this one for the ARMOR-X Mini Flexible Phone Tripod. It’s a tripod. The legs are flexible. It holds your iPhone or Android device up to a maximum width of 3.5-inches. It comes with a remote for triggering your camera app. Boom! You’re good to go. It’s $19.99. Christmas is coming. Just saying.
Apple Watch Activity Reminders are great, but sometimes you just need to mute them—or to unmute them. That setting is hidden in the Watch app in iOS 10, and Bryan Chaffin shows you how to use it.
It doesn’t take long after a new Apple product launch for iFixit to strip it down to its frame, and that’s exactly what happened with the late 2016 Retina MacBook Pro with function keys. Inside they found a smaller battery, removable custom SSD, and more.
Apple released iTunes 12.5.3 late on Monday. It’s unclear what the update actually changes because the accompanying patch notes are the same as patch notes that came with iTunes 12.5.2, and that’s true both in the Mac App Store and on Apple’s Support site.
According to Digg, “Jelle Bakker devotes his life to creating awesome marble runs and races to satisfy our craving for… marbles. His latest offering — 100,000 dang marbles rolling down a course at the same time — is as satisfying as ever.” For those who like to think about the physics of entropy, this is a must see. Anyone want to write the equations of motion?
Belkin showed me the the Valet Charger last week, and I’ve been itching for Tuesday’s launch so I could tell you about it. This portable battery charger has a USB port for charging your iPhone, but it also has a charging puck for your Apple Watch—and it’s MFi-certified. Belkin told me that making a device that could charge both wasn’t easy, which is probably why I haven’t seen any. The battery itself has a 6,700mAh capacity, more than enough to charge your iPhone and Apple Watch a couple of times. You recharge the Belkin Valet Charger via a microUSB port, meaning you can charge it, your iPhone, and Apple Watch all at the same time. I’ll be reviewing it, but I already got some hands-on time with it and I came away impressed. It’s priced at US$99.99, and it’s shipping later this fall.
The new 15-inch and 13-inch Touch Bar Retina MacBook Pro, along with their 13-inch function key sibling, do away with the Mac startup chime. Turns out the chime isn’t gone, but is only disabled—and it’s easy to re-enable with a quick trip to the Terminal. Read on to learn how.
After the Dyn DDOS attack, The Mac Observer started looking into claims that HomeKit smarthome devices were protected from participating. Today Dave Hamilton and Bryan Chaffin join Jeff Gamet to look at what they found. Hint: Internet security is a complicated thing in spite of HomeKit’s strengths.
A new report claims Apple Music is getting a big price cut in time for the holiday season with the regular US$9.99 a month deal dropping to $7.99. The family package pricing will drop, too, assuming the tenuous report is right.
If you’re running macOS Sierra, you may know that you can use Siri on your computer, but Apple’s voice assistant can also help you find out what specs your Mac’s got. So if you need to know how much storage space you have remaining, say, Siri has you covered. And so do we!
We have a deal for you today on the HOCO L1 Lightning Cable Headphones. These earbuds come with a Lightning cable for those with an iPhone 7 or iPhone 7 Plus, or those who just want to listen through their Lightning port. You can get them through us for $21.99.
Check this out. It’s probably the worst malware spam I’ve seen in a long time. I actually snorted out loud reading it. But it’s always good to be on guard against these things, and to help those in our lives who might be fooled by even this lame attempt. Accordingly, let’s turn an LOL moment into a learning opportunity.
Apple’s revolutionary Touch Bar on the new, 2016 MacBook Pros required a lot of engineering development. It uses an ARM sub-processor and a variation of watchOS. But most importantly, it forms the basis for a new system architecture, according to Apple SVP Phil Schiller. It could create things heretofore not even envisioned. Particle Debris page 2 points to an exclusive C|NET interview with Mr. Schiller who explains why it took four years to develop.
Mark Fuccio has had a distinguished career in tech. He started with an B.S. in Electrical Engineering from M.I.T. After graduation, he joined Philips Labs in Briarcliff, NY. He’s been a marketing manager at Silicon Graphics, Inc. and a senior director at Drobo, Inc. for Products and Markets. We chatted about the evolution of Unix workstations, the early days of Unix GUIs, how CPU and GPU technology advanced, how Apple moved to (BSD) Unix and Intel and turned the tables on the workstation industry (along with Microsoft). We also chatted about the philosophy of marketing as well as technical issues related to storage—and how Drobo solved those problems. Mark tells the story about a career in which he followed his vision, worked with startups, and created his own path to this day. Geekfest!
The fight is on to be the supplier for next year’s iPhone OLED displays. Samsung and LG are hoping to get a slice of that pie, and their fight all but confirms Apple is dropping LCD in favor of OLED for iPhone screens in 2017 or 2018.
Hitler has a long history of responding with outrage to various tech industry events. But this time, he’s particularly acid in his response to Apple’s October 27 “hello again” event. “OK. OK. They always start with the small stuff. What were the big announcements?” When his staff has to to tell him that all we got was a new pair of MacBook Pros with a Touch Bar, Hitler goes on a rampage that will have you rolling on the floor with laughter. Check it out.
Apple’s “hello again” media event felt like it was missing something, and that’s really bothering Bryan Chaffin and John Martellaro. They join Jeff Gamet to discuss what they think may have been planned, but pulled at the last minute, plus they question how much time Apple devoted to the new MacBook Pro’s Touch Bar.
Apple has been on a killing spree of sorts with its new MacBook Pro models. The physical Escape key and function keys are gone, the traditional USB A and mini DisplayPort/Thunderbolt 2 ports are gone, the SD Card slot and MagSafe are gone, and the iconic startup chime is missing, too. It’s sad to see—or hear—the startup chime go, but it seems Apple has a reason for axing the sound.