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    A PREMIUM TECH NIGHT OWL LIVE EXPERIENCE! Welcome to Tech Night Owl+! For a low monthly or annual subscription fee, you will receive access to an ad-free higher-resolution version of The Tech Night Owl LIVE and other exclusive content. For more information and simple signup instructions, click here.

    DOWNLOAD — Free Version: We present prolific author Bob “Dr. Mac” LeVitus, who joins Gene to talk about a variety of Apple-related topics that include sage advice on dealing with the public betas of iOS 11 and macOS High Sierra. Just what are the compelling new features, and what should you do before you install them? You’ll also hear talk about Google’s overwhelming dominance of the search engine market, and whether it’s possible they will ever be overturned. What about the speculation about a 10th anniversary iPhone, dubbed iPhone 8 in the rumors, which may list for more than $1,000? Bob explains why he hasn’t bought any new Macs lately. He also presents a special $50 discount offer designed exclusively for listeners of The Tech Night Owl LIVE.

    In a special encore segment, you’ll also hear from Josh Centers, Managing Editor for TidBITS, and author of “Take Control of Apple TV” and other titles, who does this interview on his new 10.5-inch iPad Pro, using the mic  from Apple’s AirPods wireless earphones. There’s a long discussion about the value of the iPad as a productivity tool, as Josh explains why the apps he requires for his job are not all available on Apple’s tablet. So he has to use his Mac instead, and Gene explains the problems he has in using an iPad for his work. Microsoft’s move into PC hardware, the Surface, is also discussed. The interview wraps with a long discussion about the future of Apple TV, and the tepid updates being offered in the next version of the tvOS operating system. Will the next Apple TV support 4K and HDR, the latest technologies used on TV sets? Should Apple build its own TV set, or did the ship sail years ago? Gene and Josh also talk about the possibilities of Apple’s set-top box and whether such gadgets are needed in light of the fact that new TV sets already offer popular streaming services, such as Amazon Instant Video and Netflix.

    Click to hear our latest episode: The Tech Night Owl Live — August 19, 2017

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    Newsletter Issue #925: Apple Watch: Still Not Ready for the Night Owl

    August 21st, 2017

    Funny how things have changed. It wasn’t so long ago that the Apple Watch (I know that Apple doesn’t want us to use “the,” but I don’t care) was regarded as an underachiever. Or perhaps even a failure, even though the sales figures were pretty decent for an all-new gadget.

    At first, Apple was regarded as late out of the starting gate, delivering its smartwatch a couple of years or so after other companies had already entered that space. One of the most promising contenders was Pebble, which got its start with a massive Kickstarter crowd-sourcing campaign that raised over $10 million. It was the largest such campaign up through 2012.

    Unlike some other smartwatches, the Pebble was compatible with iOS and Android. It was also cheap, with prices starting at $99. For a time, it appeared as if it would be successful. It went on sale in the summer of 2013. By December of 2014, one million units had been sold.

    Continue Reading…

    Odds and Ends of Apple Critics Being Wrong

    August 18th, 2017

    In yesterday’s column, I cited stats that indicated that the iPhone 7 was surprisingly successful in the June quarter, with sales slightly above last year, and ahead of every other smartphone on the planet. These are the kinds of numbers that continue to cement Apple’s position in the market.

    So even though Android rules the roost as far as the total number of units sold, Apple has it all over Samsung and other companies when it comes to premium gear.

    These sales come despite the torrent of speculation about an unannounced model that is generally referred to as the iPhone 8. There’s been talk about an edge-to-edge OLED display, 3D facial recognition, and other goodies. It conveys the impression that buying the current models makes no sense, since the next one will be so much better. Aside from the move to larger displays, starting with the iPhone 6 series, it would represent the biggest change in years. If true, of course.

    Continue Reading...

    Another Set of iPhone Sales Stats Confounds the Critics

    August 17th, 2017

    Although Apple reported somewhat improved iPhone sales for the June quarter, there was, as usual, no breakdown for individual models. It was left to third parties to make good guesses. So we know the total was 41 million.

    But before we look at the estimated breakdowns, consider that Apple achieved these results at a time when the iPhone 7 was getting old as smartphones go. At the same time, this was the first full quarter of sales for the Samsung Galaxy S8 and its big brother. This means that sales are apt to go downhill from here, though they should spike some during the holiday period.

    Just wanted to make that clear.

    So a market research firm, Strategy Analytics, has delivered its own estimates of worldwide smartphone sales. At the very least, the numbers seem logical enough, so they probably aren’t far off the mark. Based on these estimates, the firm’s Smartphone Model Tracker survey concludes that the iPhone 7 series was number one. Apple shipped some 16.9 million iPhone 7 units, and 15.1 million iPhone 7 Plus units.

    Continue Reading...