February 23, 2019 — Andrew Orr and Cat Murdock

This week we present tech reporter Andrew Orr from the The Mac Observer. During this segment, Andrew talks about a recent report, from Axios, that quotes unnamed people from Intel who claim that Apple is prepared to switch to its own A-series CPUs in Macs come 2020. Gene mentions recent predictions from Mac Observer Editor-in-Chief Bryan Chaffin that the next Mac Pro, expected this year, will actually be the first Mac to include one of those chips. You’ll also hear talk about Facebook security, Apple’s possible plans for introducing TV shows, and a certain outrageous claim about the forthcoming 6G, when 5G is just in the early stages of being rolled out.

In a very special segment, we focus on online security, as we present Cat Murdock, a hacker who hunts child predators for the Innocent Lives Foundation. This interview comes in the wake of recent stories about the discover of alleged pedophilia rings on YouTube. Cat will expand on the nature of the problem, and the things parents should look out for in protecting their children. The Innocent Lives Foundation is a nonprofit founded by Chris Hadnagy that recruits hackers and IT experts to use their skills for good by hunting down online predators. The organization’s board includes A.J. Cook, a member of the ensemble cast of CBS’s “Criminal Minds,” and the former head of the FBI’s Counterintelligence Behavioral Analysis Program.

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February 16, 2019 — Josh Centers and Stephen Baker

This week we present commentator Josh Centers, Managing Editor for TidBITS, and author of “Take Control of Apple TV” and other titles. During this episode, Josh focuses on such topics as attempts by law enforcement to unlock a suspect’s iPhone. While iCloud data is readily obtained, the iPhone is encrypted and Apple has refused to create a back door for security reasons. Josh also talks about the departure of Apple’s retail chief Angela Ahrendts, and whether Tim Cook lacks something in hiring new executives. You’ll also hear speculation about Apple’s forthcoming lineup of TV content, and how it might be presented in comparison to such streaming services as Amazon Prime Video, Hulu, and Netflix. And what about the rumored AppleCar?

You’ll also hear from tech industry expert Stephen Baker, Vice President for Industry Analysis at the NPD Group. Stephen will discuss the fast-growing smartwatch market, where Apple leads by a huge margin. What did the industry do to gain traction? You’ll also about Apple’s plans to expand its market beyond Apple TV by licensing AirPlay 2 and an iTunes app to major TV makers, such as Samsung. There will also be discussions about flattening smartphone sales and declining PC sales, where Apple has boosted prices on its gear to increase revenue. Stephen will also talk about the success of 4K TV, and whether those super expensive 8K sets, coming to market at very high prices, will some day become popular. And what about the smart speaker market?

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February 9, 2019 — Bryan Chaffin and Brett Johnson

This week we present tech writer/editor Bryan Chaffin, co-founder and co-publisher of The Mac Observer. Recent Apple news is front and center, as Gene and Bryan talk about the insidious bug in Group FaceTime, since fixed, which allowed you to listen to someone at the other end of the connection before the call was made. You’ll also hear about Apple’s revenue shortfall, and whether high prices might have, in part, caused the sales shortfall. There’s also a discussion about Apple’s decision to license AirPlay 2 to major TV makers, such as LG, Sony and VIZIO. Will this be the savior for Apple TV technology? Bryan also offers an update on his theory about the forthcoming Mac Pro, which Apple has promised for this year. Will it result in a key change that is comparable in its impact to the one Apple announced in 2005?

In a very special encore segment, we also present the fascinating life story of a former “most wanted” cybercriminal. Brett Johnson discusses his long and varied history as a career criminal, which took him from petty crime to online scams that included identity theft, tax fraud, social engineering attacks, hacking and more. He built and was leader of ShadowCrew, the precursor to today’s darknet markets. As a reformed criminal, Brett consults with large corporations and helps them harden their systems to prevent intrusions from cybercriminals. A nationally-known lecturer and podcaster, he’ll also deliver common sense advice on how you can product yourself from the dangers of the online world where privacy is usually just a talking point and not much else.

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February 2, 2019 — Josh Centers and Bryan Chaffin

This week we present a very special encore episode featuring commentator Josh Centers, Managing Editor for TidBITS, and author of “Take Control of Apple TV” and other titles. During this episode, Josh talks about a possible new Apple “Bendgate” scandal, involving a bent chassis issue with the 2018 iPad Pro. Although Apple claims the affected units are within spec, is this something Apple will have to fix? What about past problems with possibly defective Apple gear? Josh also talks about the latest concerns over Facebook privacy and how it handles customer data. The discussion also covers his newest book, “Take Control of Notes,” and Apple’s upcoming slate of original TV programs. Can Apple deliver compelling entertainment that will quickly grab an audience?

You’ll also hear from tech editor Bryan Chaffin, co-founder and co-publisher of The Mac Observer. During this segment, Bryan will also cover Apple’s move to remove unit sales from its quarterly financials and the possible impact, and Apple Music on Alexa. There will also be a discussion on the lack of 5K displays, other than Apple’s iMac and iMac Pro, and an LG display. What about reports of online blackmail, where someone claims to have discovered your password, and threatens to out you as visiting unsavory sites unless you pay the ransom, by Bitcoin. Gene and Bryan will also talk about Apple’s higher prices on its latest gear, and what about the promised Mac Pro, due out in 2019? Bryan reveals his theory about why Apple is taking so long to produce the successor to the failed “trashcan” model introduced in 2013 and never updated. Will the next Mac Pro herald a major change in the Mac platform?

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