Wikileaks, CIA, and iPhone Hacks - TMO Daily Observations 2017-03-08

With the Wikileaks report out saying the CIA developed hacking tools to get into our iPhones, John Martellaro joins Jeff Gamet to look at Apple’s security measures for our mobile devices. They also look at the negative message Apple is sending customers by not giving us solid information about the Mac, and Kelly Guimont drops by for a few minutes, too.

Loopy Cases Have a Finger Loop on the Back

Check out Loopy Cases for iPhone. The short version is that they have a loop for your finger on the back. You can use the loop for more secure one-handed operation, walking around, or as a poor-man’s stand. I was turned on to Loopy Cases by a friend who’s always dropping her iPhone. She thought it was just the thing to stop dropping her device, and watching the video (below), I agree. The case has reinforced bumpers in case you drop it anyway, but it’s main purpose is to hold the loop itself. There are Loopy Cases for iPhone 6/6 Plus, iPhone 7/7 Plus, and a handful of Samsung devices if that’s your thing. They’re priced at $35, with free shipping in the U.S. for orders more than $40 ($50 for international orders).

Apple Rumors and Manufacturing, Tim Cook's Pipeline, and $AAPL - ACM 400

In this 400th episode of Apple Context Machine, John Kheit joins Bryan Chaffin to discuss rumors of iPhone 8 and Samsung Galaxy S8, Apple manufacturing, Tim Cook’s claim that Apple cares about pro users and creative pros in particular, the company’s supposed pipeline, and $AAPL’s record high valuation. Oh…and Nickleback.

iPhone Screen Repairs By Third Parties Now Get Some Warranty Coverage

Apple recently decided iPhone screen repairs by third-parties don’t fully void your warranty anymore. Affected iPhone will also qualify for warranty coverage as long as the repair isn’t related to the third-party display itself. Before, iPhones with third-party displays weren’t eligible for authorized repair under warranty from an Apple Authorized Service Provider.

An App that Automatically Notifies People of Your Trip Progress

I had an interesting app cross my desk this week called I’m Coming. It’s a GPS-based app that will automatically send updates to people letting them know how far away you are. For instance, you’re driving across country to visit your family. I’m Coming will notify the people you designate on your progress. No texts to and from you while you’re driving. And your family doesn’t have to bug you or wait for you to let them know where you are. Or, you’re driving across town for an important meeting. Same thing, rather than (illegal) texts in the middle of city driving, I’m Coming will notify your peers. [Edit: Or the kids you’re going to pick up. Think—be ready when I show up.] It’s an interesting idea that I haven’t seen in an app. It lets you save both your contacts and trips, and users can customize their messages, notification intervals, and profile. This app was developed by Don Kimenker—long-term Mac fans might remember him as the publisher of MacAddict magazine. The app is a free download—some features require an in-app purchase of $2.99.

Can WALTR 2 Really Be Your iTunes Replacement?

When you’re looking for an iTunes replacement, you want something that can do just about everything Apple’s software can do, but better. WALTR has been a good contender in this arena, and WALTR 2 offers functionality that iTunes doesn’t. The question is, does it work as designed? Come along with Jeff Butts as he reviews WALTR 2 and uncovers how well it performs.

Frolic in the Apple Park, Rumors for iPad and Apple Watch - ACM 399

Apple announced the name of what we used to call Apple Campus 2.0—now it’s Apple Park. Bryan and Jeff chew on the name for a while, and discuss what we might expect when it opens in April. They also pore over Apple Watch 3 rumors and the news that a key supplier will stop making Apple Watch displays. And somehow they segue that into some new iPad and iPhone rumors.

The Pros and Cons of Legacy Apple Products Going Extinct

It seems that there is just as much fuss about Apple products that seem to be on the verge of extinction as there is about exciting new products. John looks at the economics and psychology of Apple dropping beloved products like certain Macs, Airport base stations, displays and other devices that we’ve come to depend on. Are we on the verge of a new age of Apple?