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    DOWNLOAD — Free version: On this week’s all-star episode, we feature Adam Engst, of TidBITS and Take Control Books. The main focus will be on Apple’s decision to discontinue displays, and the deal that resulted in the development of the troubled LG UltraFine 5K Display, which was announced along with new MacBook Pros. What went wrong, and why did some units fail when in close proximity to a Wi-Fi router? Adam will also discuss the possibilities for future upgrades to Mac desktop computers, and the rumored use of ARM processors to manage more Mac functions. What about replacing Intel processors with Apple’s A-series silicon?

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    More Fear-Mongering About Apple Innovation

    February 24th, 2017

    Do you remember what they said about the iPhone 7? It would be a boring upgrade, mostly because it would look the same as the iPhone 6s. So how could it offer anything significant? But it’s not that a rectangle with circular corners comprises all the functionality of a smartphone, obviously. Apple could have, I suppose, made some big changes in the look of the new model, put nothing different inside, and gotten great reviews.

    But what about making it water-resistant? What about the improved camera, faster performance and all the other changes? Minor? Compared to any previous iPhone?

    Supposedly the “real” changes will happen with the rumored 10th anniversary iPhone 8 this fall. It will receive all softs of changes that would make it the biggest update ever. So if you don’t need a new smartphone, I suppose, perhaps hold on for another year and buy a more expensive iPhone with great new features.

    That was then, this is now.

    Continue Reading...

    About the Installed Base

    February 23rd, 2017

    Typical of Apple’s iOS releases, users of iPhones and iPads upgrade in droves, with hundreds of millions running the upgrade within just a few months. So according to data from the App Store that’s available to developers, as of February 20, Apple reports that 79% of these devices have been upgraded to iOS 10 so far.

    In contrast, the iOS 9 adoption rate hit 77% over roughly the same period. But what’s most important about its successor is that tens of millions of devices aren’t supported. There will always be a residue of gear that cannot upgrade, which makes the numbers even more impressive.

    So iOS 10 requires an iPhone 5 or later, an iPad mini 2 or later, and an iPad 4th generation or later. Obviously all iPad Airs and Pros, more recent products, are eligible for the update.

    A third-party web tracking company, Mixpanel Trends, lists the adoption rate at 88%, but that might be pushing it.

    Continue Reading...

    Will There Be a Spring Apple Event?

    February 22nd, 2017

    Apple didn’t deliver as many product updates in 2016 as many expected. While there were new iPhones, with the surprising release of an iPhone SE to meet demand for a small handset, the Mac didn’t get a whole lot of love. The MacBook got a minor spring refresh, although the fall introduction of the MacBook Pro with Touch Bar was certainly a major upgrade as Macs go nowadays.

    It was enough for some to suggest that Macs are getting short shrift at Apple. Despite the fact that the product brings in over $20 billion in annual revenues, it almost seems insignificant compared to the iPhone. Or at least that’s the theory, that Apple cares about its most popular product, but gives the rest of the lineup mostly tepid support. Then again, the Apple Watch Series 2 was a fairly significant upgrade, with faster performance, a GPS, not to mention being waterproof.

    Continue Reading...

    Is Apple Pushing iPads Again?

    February 21st, 2017

    Now despite the fact that Mac sales are stable, and the iPhone is growing again, the iPad has remained a drag on Apple’s numbers. Profits are surely high, but sales keep dropping, quarter after quarter, after reaching a peak in 2013.

    The main question is why? Were iPads disappointing to all those millions of people who bought them? Or did they just decide that it made no sense to upgrade every year or two, so we have many keeping them three or four years before choosing to upgrade.

    But if there’s going to be an upgrade cycle, it’s not here yet, or maybe tablets are yesterday’s news.

    From time to time, Microsoft puts up an ad meant to show why a Surface is better than a Mac or iPad.

    Well, appears Apple has decided to return the favor with short ads extolling the virtues of an iPad Pro. So in demonstrating the advantages over a Windows machine, the ads explain that you can get them with LTE data access. Another advantage, that the iPad doesn’t get viruses.

    Continue Reading...