Apple Context Machine Podcast

The Apple Context Machine is Mac, iPhone, and iPod news and analysis that puts the facts in perspective, brought to you with a sense of humor. Hosts Jeff Gamet and Bryan Chaffin from The Mac Observer put the Apple world into context.

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Congressional Encryption Working Group Backs Encryption, Thoughts on CES - ACM 390

Dec. 22nd, 2016 - 8:25 PM | 01:01:43

In this age of different devices and platforms, Bryan Chaffin and Jeff Gamet talk about the lack of consistency in Apple’s interfaces compared to the days when “Apple” meant “Mac.” They also go over some listener feedback (read criticism) about their rant last week on...

Podcast Archives

  1. Dec. 22nd, 2016
    Apple Context Machine Podcast
    Congressional Encryption Working Group Backs Encryption, Thoughts on CES – ACM 390

    The Congressional Encryption Working Group has issued a year-end report on encryption that finds weakening encryption would harm the national security interests of the United States. Bryan and Jeff discuss the implications, as well as a new request from the Turkish government asking Apple to unlock an iPhone 4s owned by an assassin. They cap the show with a preview of CES expectations.

  2. Dec. 14th, 2016
    Apple Context Machine Podcast
    Apple AirPods, Kickstarter, and Augmented Reality – ACM 389

    Apple shipped AirPods. Sort of. Bryan and Jeff think it was a terrible idea to ship them before Christmas if Apple couldn't meet demand, which is exactly what's happening. They also weigh the merits of Kickstarter and discuss the state of augmented reality and its future.

  3. Dec. 7th, 2016
    Apple Context Machine Podcast
    Living with Apple’s Touch Bar, the Reverse Toaster Fridge – ACM 388

    Bryan Chaffin quizzes Jeff Gamet about living with Apple's new TouchBar on his MacBook Pro. They also discuss whether or not the so-called Reverse ToasterFridge could be the future of Apple's hardware. Listener comments have been pouring in, too.

  4. Nov. 30th, 2016
    Apple Context Machine Podcast
    ACM 387: State of Apple Advertising, Apple’s Product Vision

    John Kheit joins Bryan Chaffin to discuss the state of Apple's advertising, including Frankie's Holiday, Balloons, and Bulbs. Spoiler, John hates them and Bryan thinks they're lovely. They also talk about Apple's product vision and the end of AirPort. Another spoiler: John is cranky about that, too.

  5. Nov. 23rd, 2016
    Apple Context Machine Podcast
    ACM 386: Apple’s Lackluster 2016, Mac Automation, and Black Friday

    Apple released only 13 new products in 2016, an embarrassing lack of riches. Bryan Chaffin and Jeff Gamet discuss what this might mean. They also talk about the future of automation on the Mac, as well as the return of Apple's Black Friday sale. Does Apple feel the need to goose sales for the December quarter?

  6. Nov. 16th, 2016
    Apple Context Machine Podcast
    ACM 385: Apple Coffee Table Book and Design Run Amok

    Apple has a new coffee table book out called Designed by Apple in California. Bryan Chaffin is joined by guest-host John Kheit to talk about it. Spoiler: Bryan likes it and John sees it as a sign of Apple having lost the plot. They also discuss the idea that design has run amok at Apple, starting with the idea that Jony Ive needed Steve Jobs as a counter balance.

  7. Nov. 9th, 2016
    Apple Context Machine Podcast
    ACM 384: Demand for iPhone 7 Plus, AWS2, MacBook Pro

    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.

  8. Nov. 2nd, 2016
    Apple Context Machine Podcast
    ACM 383: iOS Song Star Ratings Return, MacBook Pro Innovation Rants

    iTunes Song Ratings are back in iOS 10.2 beta, and Bryan and Jeff are stoked, even if it's not perfect. They also talk about the pushback gets when Apple pushes the envelope with its products. They cap the show with a look at MacBooK Pro's Touch Bar being a double down against making a ToasterFridge.

  9. Oct. 27th, 2016
    Apple Context Machine Podcast
    ACM 382: How Pro Are the New MacBook Pros?

    Apple just announced new MacBook Pro models, and Bryan and Jeff talk about their pros and cons. In particular the "pros" part, because while these devices are powerful, they question whether they are really that pro at all. They also talk about the new TV app for Apple TV.

  10. Oct. 19th, 2016
    Apple Context Machine Podcast
    ACM 381: Tim Cook as Veep and iTunes Star Ratings

    Tim Cook was apparently on a list of possible running mates for Hillary Clinton. Bryan and Jeff talk about Mr. Cook as a possible candidate and whether or not he would have wanted the gig. They also discuss iTunes Star Ratings for songs and the fact that they've been taken away in iOS 10.

  11. Oct. 12th, 2016
    Apple Context Machine Podcast
    ACM 380: USB Kill 2.0 and Samsung Schadenfreude

    Bryan and Jeff talk about USB Kill 2.0, a device that looks like a hard drive, but can damage—if not destroy—a Mac, PC, iPhone, iPad, or any other device with a USB port. They also take a few moments to enjoy some schadenfreude at Samsung's defense.

  12. Oct. 5th, 2016
    Apple Context Machine Podcast
    ACM 379: Apple’s Mysterious October Announcements and Who Cares about Google’s Pixel Smartphone?

    Apple moved its quarterly conference call in October, and it's set off a lot of echo-chamber debate and speculation. Bryan and Jeff weed out the balderdash. They also ask who cares about Google's new Pixel smartphone line.

  13. Sep. 28th, 2016
    Apple Context Machine Podcast
    ACM 378: Life Without a Headphone Jack, More Apple Watch, Siri on the Mac

    We've had our iPhone 7s for a week and a half, and Bryan and Jeff talk about life without the headphone jack. They also discuss the differences between Apple Watch (Series 0) and the new Apple Watch Series 2. They close out the show talking about Siri on the Mac, using it, and the lack of "Hey Siri" support. Plus, Bryan is punchy from a lack of sleep, so silliness runs rampant.

  14. Sep. 21st, 2016
    Apple Context Machine Podcast
    ACM 377: Apple’s iPhone 7 and Apple Watch Series 2

    Bryan and Jeff talk about iPhone 7, whether or not it's a must-have upgrade, and even what constitutes a must-have upgrade any more. They also talk about their immediate impressions of Apple Watch Series 2 after spending a day with the new models.  All this and more.

  15. Sep. 8th, 2016
    Apple Context Machine Podcast
    ACM 376: Deep Dive into iPhone 7, Apple Watch Series 2

    Bryan and Jeff go in-depth with our hands-on experience with Apple's new iPhone 7 and Apple Watch Series 2. Apple Watch Nike+, Apple Watch Edition (Ceramic), the button-less Home Button on iPhone 7, the new cameras, the bright displays...it's all in this episode of The Apple Context Machine.

  16. Aug. 31st, 2016
    Apple Context Machine Podcast
    ACM 375: Google Want to be Your Ride, Tim Cook’s Message Pivot

    Google is entering the ride-sharing business, and Bryan and Jeff take an in-depth look at what that means. They also dive back into how and why Apple is opening itself up to journalists, and some of the things we've learned because of that.

  17. Aug. 24th, 2016
    Apple Context Machine Podcast
    ACM 374: The Apple Narrative, Music Industry Directives, and Samsung’s Spoiled Milk

    Adam Christianson joins Bryan Chaffin in this week's ACM to discuss Apple's recent efforts to more directly control its narrative. They also chat about Universal Music Group's directive to stop doing exclusive streaming deals, and the deserved demise of Samsung's Milk.

  18. Aug. 17th, 2016
    Apple Context Machine Podcast
    ACM 373: Apple’s Engineering Demands, Fake iPhones, Intel’s ARM Move

    Apple is relentless with its design ideas regardless of what the hardware engineers say. Bryan and Jeff explain why that's a good thing for consumers, plus they show you how to spot fake iPhone 7 photos, and look at Intel's decision to start making ARM processors.

  19. Aug. 10th, 2016
    Apple Context Machine Podcast
    ACM 372: Samsung Pay’s Security Failure, the Story Behind Apple’s Public Betas

    Bryan and Jeff dig into Samsung shenanigans, including reports of a way to hack magnetic stripe reader transactions, and the mysterious case of Apple Watch drawings in a Samsung patent. They also discuss the interesting story of how the flawed Apple Maps rollout led to public beta programs for OS X and iOS.

  20. Aug. 3rd, 2016
    Apple Context Machine Podcast
    ACM 371: iPad Pro (Surface) Ad, Siri’s Shortcomings, Apple’s Big Developer Payout

    Bryan and Jeff discuss Apple's commercial that embraces many of the things Microsoft has used to tout Surface Pro. They also talk about Apple's remarkable success with the App Store, as well as some of Siri's shortcomings.