August 26, 2017 — Peter Cohen and Jeff Gamet

In a special encore episode, we present outspoken commentator and podcaster Peter Cohen. As part of an extensive agenda, Gene and Peter talk about self-driving technology, and what Apple might be planning. Gene will explain how air bags and seat belts helped save his life during a serious auto accident. What about the claims from Greenpeace, the environmental organization, about whether Apple is engaged in planned obsolescence by making its products difficult or impossible to upgrade? What about a survey that some 25% of Windows users in the U.S., who plan to buy new computers in the next six months, are going to choose Macs?

You’ll also hear from Jeff Gamet, Managing Editor for The Mac Observer. The discussion starts with a brief pop culture segment, as Gene mentions that Joel Hynek, the son of the late Dr. J. Allen Hynek, the well-known astronomer with a fascination for UFOs, is an Oscar-winning special effects artist. On the tech front, the discussion moves to whether self-driving technology will spread to car-sharing. Instead of buying a car, you will share autonomous vehicles with other drivers. Just will it impact the car-buying experience? Jeff will also talk about the Greenpeace report, and the flaws in the smartphone and notebook test methods employed by Consumer Reports magazine. Can you really get 20 hours battery life from a MacBook Pro with Touch Bar?

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August 19, 2017 — Bob “Dr. Mac” LeVitus and Josh Centers

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.

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August 12, 2017 — John Martellaro and Kirk McElhearn

We present outspoken columnist John Martellaro, Senior Editor, Analysis & Reviews for The Mac Observer. The discussion begins with the potentially costly gear Apple is expected to introduce for the fall of 2017. You’ll hear the latest rumors about the iPhone 8 — 10th anniversary model — and other gear, and just how well is Apple really doing in education? Is the new iPad enough, or does Apple have to find better ways to deliver an affordable notebook computer to classrooms? The discussion moves to expectations for the next Apple TV, which may include 4K and HDR support, plus other features. Is this a product whose time might have come and gone, or is does it still have potential against the competition? Gene and John will also speculate about reports that the next Apple Watch may include LTE support, which could allow them to make and receive phone calls, shades of Dick Tracy.

You’ll also hear from columnist and podcaster Kirk McElhearn, who will join Gene in a pop culture discussion, focusing on recent movies. What about a recent newspaper report about famous singers, most recently Adelle, who are losing their voices and have to undergo delicate microsurgery to resume their careers? Are they following the wrong singing techniques? There will also be a lengthy discussion about the potential for Apple TV, and whether cord cutting makes sense. Is it possible to get all the TV shows you want with such streaming services as Netflix, or is there the danger of getting so many services and apps that you end up spending more than with a traditional cable and satellite TV package with hundreds of channels?

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August 5, 2017 — Adam Engst and Derek Kessler

We present long-time tech journalist and editor Adam Engst, of TidBITS. The discussion begins with the recent decision by Apple to discontinue two of the three iPods still being sold, and moves on to Adobe’s announcement that its Flash multimedia platform will be discontinued as of 2020. Gene and Adam will also talk about Adobe’s failed efforts to create a version of Flash that can run on mobile platforms, such as Android and iOS. With the news that Apple sold one million iPads to the educational market in the June quarter, the discussion moves to the ongoing potential to boost market share against such competitors as Chromebook notebooks, which use the Google Chrome OS. Gene speculates on a mythical iPad Hybrid, which he suggests could combine an iPad with a notebook-style case that includes a keyboard and trackpad. Possible, or just a silly idea?

In a special encore appearance, you’ll also hear from tech journalist Derek Kessler, editor of TeslaCentral.com, as well as managing editor of Mobile Nations. Derek will tell you all about Elon Musk’s Tesla, a line of electric cars that are having a major impact on the auto industry. Derek owns a Tesla Model S, and he’ll tell you about the advantages, and disadvantages of driving an all-electric vehicle. What about the impact of cold weather on the batteries, which can sharply reduce battery life? What about “range anxiety” and finding nearby charging stations before your car runs out of juice? You’ll also hear about the forthcoming Model 3 mid-sized car, Tesla’s first “affordable” vehicle, which will carry a starting price of $35,000. Can Tesla meet its very optimistic production targets to build enough vehicles to fill hundreds of thousands of advance orders?

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