The Talk Show

236: ‘A Vivid Nightmarescape’ With Dieter Bohn


00:00:00   Dieter Bohn, first time on the talk show. It's been too long without having you on.

00:00:04   Yeah, I've been a long time listener. It's good to be on. How are you doing?

00:00:07   Oh, terrible. Today was Gruber Family Christmas tree day.

00:00:11   Oh, wow.

00:00:12   It is still... I say was as though it's the past. Well, it's in the house. Our living room is on

00:00:21   the second floor. I don't know if you know this or not. I don't know if you follow my wife on

00:00:26   Twitter. My wife has a predilection for very large Christmas trees. So take a tape measure,

00:00:33   measure the ceiling in your abode, and then add two feet and that's how big

00:00:38   of a Christmas tree she wants. And it is every year. My son even said in the car ride on the way

00:00:46   home from the artisanal Christmas tree farm we have to drive to. Yeah. That doesn't

00:00:56   and it feel like it was just yesterday. I mean, at least this one fits in the house.

00:01:03   That's all I can say. But it did get it up on the second floor is so hard. And then try

00:01:09   to pick up all the needles on the way up. Just a disaster. Do you know what, though?

00:01:12   We've been doing this for a long time. My wife and I have been together for many years

00:01:16   and we've always had a big Christmas tree and it's always a huge mess getting the damn

00:01:21   thing out of the house. And then I don't know why. And this is, this is just me being an

00:01:25   idiot. This seems like something I should have thought of years ago. But last year,

00:01:29   we had a tree that we moved to a bigger house a couple years ago, well, a house with higher

00:01:34   ceilings at least. So we got a bigger tree than ever last year. And it was literally

00:01:39   impossible. I honestly didn't see how we were going to get it out of the house. I mean,

00:01:42   you get it in because it's tied up. You know what I mean? They they tie these trees up

00:01:45   and you get it in. And then it opens up and it's you know, it's honestly like the Christmas

00:01:51   Vacation movie where it's flowing and then all of a sudden it's like there's no room for anything in

00:01:56   the living room other than this giant tree. But then you know, how do you get this tree out? Well,

00:02:01   you cut it up. So we got like one of these big like hand shears, you know, it means like it's

00:02:07   like a jet like the world's biggest pair of scissors effectively. What you should have done

00:02:10   was gotten a chainsaw. That's what I was thinking. See, you're you think more like me. I thought

00:02:18   Chainsaw and my wife I think sensibly I think bought this hand tool and

00:02:23   And again, I I will have to give her credit. She's the one who cut it up. But yeah, it's sort of like dismembering a body, you know

00:02:30   Like one finger at a time, but

00:02:35   We got the tree. It's been a long day

00:02:37   Man, it's funny, you know, my family's in Minnesota

00:02:41   my wife's family's in Arkansas and so we're always traveling on the holidays and so we haven't had a

00:02:47   tree in a while but my family in Minnesota we used to have a tree and then

00:02:51   My mom decided screw it and she got a fake tree and it's gotten to the point now where they don't even take the decorations off

00:02:58   The thing anymore

00:02:59   They just they fold up the plastic with the decorations on it stick a trash bag over it put it in the garage and then the

00:03:05   Day before we show up, you know every year for Christmas

00:03:07   They just pull it out pull the trash bag off stick in the living room and it's done if you've got room that sounds so

00:03:13   compared to the mess that we're in so I were recording and then after we record I've got to string up the lights that's my job and

00:03:20   With any tree I think with a normal precise tree it takes forever to put the lights on the tree

00:03:27   But with a giant ass tree it takes forever. I don't know. I'll be drunk

00:03:32   Good, it's the right way to do it

00:03:35   All right you and you did something crazy. You said what you bought a circuit a surface go

00:03:40   yeah, so I

00:03:43   You know, I just reviewed the pixel slate. I played around with the iPad Pro a little bit and I have last year's iPad Pro and

00:03:49   I you know, I've got a Surface Pro that I you know use every now and then although most of the time when I'm at

00:03:55   Home, I use a pixel book. Anyway, I was like look I wanna I want a tablet that has LTE and I have a

00:04:02   Unhealthy

00:04:06   explainable obsession with tiny computers

00:04:08   My favorite computer of all time bar none was the the 12-inch MacBook back at the day

00:04:15   And then I used the the new the new 12-inch MacBook, whatever whatever we call that thing wait for the 11 it

00:04:21   What do you mean back in the day the power book the yeah when there was the yeah in the mini-me commercial the little guy

00:04:28   What was that? What was what was that? I said was that empowered or was it 11 inch? It was called a power book

00:04:35   Yeah, how big was that? I know which one you're talking about because I had the keyboard that went all the way to the edge

00:04:39   Yeah, I

00:04:42   Shouldn't be drawing a blank on this but alright keep going. Anyway, that was my favorite computer. So I love tiny computers

00:04:48   I was like, alright, I'm gonna I'm gonna give the surface go a shot because I had I bought the LTE version

00:04:52   Microsoft's is

00:04:54   Completely incompetent at shipping the thing because it turns out that if you don't actually run a massive retail operation

00:05:00   You just sell, you know computers on the side. You don't know how to do it

00:05:04   Anyway, I finally got the thing and I'm really impressed with how well Windows integrates

00:05:10   with LTE.

00:05:11   It just silently falls back when you need it.

00:05:14   But I am still – my feelings on Windows are the same as they ever are, which is they

00:05:19   laid a great foundation and then they forgot to furnish it.

00:05:24   They laid the foundation, they built the house.

00:05:26   The house is okay.

00:05:27   It's not the best house.

00:05:28   It's like a ranch.

00:05:29   And then they just forgot to put any furniture in it and they assumed other people would

00:05:32   come in and make apps for it and and nobody did. And so it's it's a little bit. I don't

00:05:39   know I can I can get a little bit more done on it than I can on an iPad Pro simply because

00:05:43   I need so much web app stuff for my job. But generally speaking, it's it's it's nice because

00:05:50   it it forces me to not work that hard because you can't do that much.

00:05:55   It was in fact a 12 inch PowerBook G4. It was a PowerBook. Okay. Yeah, I don't know

00:06:00   why I was I don't know why 12 inch threw me off. I should have known that because it that is the

00:06:04   computer and I'm with you on the small computers. That is the power book that I never owned one

00:06:12   because at the time I couldn't really afford it slash justify it because I had like a super fancy

00:06:18   desktop and I really really only needed a laptop occasionally so I got the the iBook instead. Yeah.

00:06:26   but I like side-eyed that one because it was so gorgeous. I've talked to Jason Snell about this

00:06:32   too. I remember just a couple years ago, I mean it wasn't that reason at this point, but maybe

00:06:35   like two or three years ago I was in a coffee shop here in Philly and I saw somebody with one.

00:06:41   Oh wow. But at a glance I couldn't quite, you know, it was just somebody at a table and I saw

00:06:46   it and I was like holy shit what is that laptop? That is amazing. That is the first non-Apple

00:06:51   laptop I've seen in years that makes me really, really jealous. And then I did the double take

00:06:57   and looked and I was like, "Oh, it is an Apple laptop and it's ancient." And it's super thick.

00:07:02   But at a glance, just looking at it top down with that keyboard, it was like, "Oh man, that is

00:07:08   perfect." Yeah, I was a grad student at the time and I would bike to school. And so it was small,

00:07:15   I had to fit my bag with the five books I had to stick in my backpack or whatever it was.

00:07:20   And I would always impress people when I would pull it out because they couldn't believe that

00:07:24   it existed. And honestly, that computer in a lot of ways was one of the reasons I dropped out of

00:07:31   grad school, went into technology, because everyone was like, "What is that thing?" And I'd talk about

00:07:34   the thing and then all of a sudden, I realized I was more interested in the computer than I was in

00:07:41   semiotics.

00:07:42   So you bought the surface? I did. It's about the same size recording the show on what are you using

00:07:54   to record this? I'm on a I'm on a 13 inch MacBook Pro with a touch bar, which I regret getting the

00:08:01   touch bar not just getting the escape because I really hate the touch bar but I wanted just that

00:08:05   little bit of extra power because I have it in my head. Because I make YouTube videos that I'm going

00:08:10   I'm gonna go into this world where I'm gonna shoot some stuff and do some basic editing myself and then hand it off to somebody

00:08:15   That actually knows what they're doing

00:08:17   But I I have yet to figure out how to effectively podcast on anything else other than a Mac

00:08:24   I've taken a little bit of time and played around with some stuff

00:08:26   But when it comes down if I don't have audio hijack, I just feel like I don't know what I'm doing. Yeah, and it's

00:08:32   you know, it's I've used this analogy is probably one of my favorite things I've ever written but that

00:08:39   More or less that it's the heaviness of the Mac that allows iOS to remain light, you know

00:08:44   and and you know what we and we've all in the last two months everybody in our racket has run through this entire circle of

00:08:51   These two and ones, you know

00:08:54   Yes on the iPad to the surfaces to now now Google's in it with the pixel slate

00:09:00   in that

00:09:03   The iPad is going at it from this sort of blown-up phone OS and it doesn't do a lot and all of these complaints are

00:09:10   around things that a

00:09:12   quote-unquote real computer can do or makes easy or you don't have to think about and the iPad either can't do or you've got to

00:09:19   jump through a million hoops and then you know, like the Chromebooks and the Windows computers are coming from a PC and trying to put a

00:09:27   iPad a tablet interface on and they are it in a to me in a nutshell

00:09:32   They all fall short in the most obvious way

00:09:34   which is that none of them really make jump the chasm from where they started that the iPad is still fundamentally a

00:09:41   big phone tablet and

00:09:43   The the computer E ones like the Chromebooks and the Windows ones never really get the simplified thing

00:09:49   but one of the things you don't even think about is the way that on a Mac you've got so many audio options and like

00:09:56   Every app running on your computer can listen to the microphone come, you know

00:10:00   The USB microphone coming in if it wants to and on the iPad

00:10:03   No

00:10:06   Well, and you also you just have so much more ability to really sort of fiddle with the way it works

00:10:12   What's the what's the other app that rogue amoeba does that lets you squirt audio to different sources and?

00:10:17   Mix and match where it comes in and where it goes. I used to use that all the time

00:10:23   There's audio hijack and

00:10:25   What else do they have? They've got the new one called

00:10:28   They just have an update to loop back

00:10:31   but that does that similarly loop back is like you can

00:10:35   Like if I want it if I played sound effects on my podcast or have yeah theme song I could play the theme song

00:10:40   Right now and then you would be able to hear it because it would I could if I so choose

00:10:44   Pump the audio through to Skype or or whatever right and back of the day if you wanted to record Skype

00:10:50   It was the only thing that you could use because you wanted to record locally

00:10:55   You didn't want to just record the output from Skype and then you'd want to like take it from one thing to the next

00:10:59   So it was a whole fiasco

00:11:01   Yeah, the the thing about like all these different I wish there's a better term than future of computer computers

00:11:07   But that's kind of where we're at

00:11:09   I I've been talking about like big screen computers just to try and you know admit that phones are everybody's primary device these days

00:11:15   I think you're right that the the where they start is kind of where they are now and

00:11:20   Part of the up until this year, maybe last year, I was relatively forgiving, especially

00:11:26   with the iPad.

00:11:27   I was like, look, they're gonna get there.

00:11:29   It started as a blown up phone, but they've done a really good job of making the UI work

00:11:33   on the big screen.

00:11:34   And they're trying to think beyond what just traditional windowing are, and that'll be

00:11:39   fine.

00:11:40   But at this point, it's been a really long time, right?

00:11:45   Like iPad has been around a long time.

00:11:47   Yeah, I just I just mentioned that it's it's 2010 and so it's eight years, you know, eight and a half years really

00:11:54   That's a long time and like my thing that I compared it to and I it's not the first time

00:11:59   Other people have done this in years past but now that we're eight and a half years in but just comparing it to the Mac when?

00:12:04   The Mac was eight years old, which would be around 1992 or so. So it's like that was one year into the system 7 era

00:12:11   and the Mac was

00:12:14   Totally like the cloud that was like the the the peak of the classic Mac era if anything, you know

00:12:19   It was yeah, it wasn't just that the Mac had was ahead of the iPad

00:12:21   It was like the the classic Mac had reached its apex if anything entire industries like graphic design and the print industry

00:12:28   Had it were it within eight years the entire print industry had been

00:12:33   completely

00:12:36   Blown away and everything was based on Macintosh computers it which when I was young, you know

00:12:43   and that was, you know, I was like, you know, first couple years of college, and then I

00:12:46   came out of college and worked in the graphic design industry. It all seemed very normal

00:12:50   to me as like, you know, 21 year old 22 year old that Yeah, of course, all of this stuff

00:12:55   revolves around Macintosh is this whether it would, you'd have to be an animal to do

00:12:59   this some other way. But in hindsight, now that I'm in my 40s, and I think about an industry

00:13:04   that completely dropped everything it did every technology from what the designers use

00:13:09   to what the guys in the print shop did in eight years. Everything was thrown out. They

00:13:15   just threw it all out and switched everything to Macintosh computers. It was amazing.

00:13:19   You know.

00:13:20   Is there any, like, are there any parallels to that today? I'd really have to stretch

00:13:25   my mind to think of something. You know, you say that the Mac being heavy is what lets

00:13:30   the iPad be light, but I think it also, it gives people an excuse not to do that with

00:13:35   the iPad. Yeah. If since the Mac is there, you don't have to convert everything over to the iPad

00:13:40   and that in some ways holds it back. Yeah, in some ways. And I think that's the fear that some

00:13:45   Macintosh fans have. And like I've said recently, like, if anything, I would be if I was a fan of

00:13:51   one of, you know, the had to, you know, had all of my chips in one of Apple's platforms. The one

00:13:58   that I would be the most worried about if I was all in on would be iPad, because it's the iPad

00:14:02   that's never gotten the love like the Mac users are the ones who are paranoid and have this fear

00:14:06   that Apple wants is going to abandon the Mac and have everybody you know just use iPads or stick

00:14:12   iOS on a laptop or big s 30 inch you know iMac style thing but if anything that you know it's

00:14:20   the iPad that's seen the least love over the last eight years really has yeah just in terms of I

00:14:26   mean they they added the split screen and there's a little slide over thing and you know there's a

00:14:30   a few of those accommodations.

00:14:31   But it's like you need to be like an alchemist.

00:14:35   You need to be a wizard to really get to some stuff that

00:14:38   feels pretty basic.

00:14:39   And it's like drag and drop and even the file management stuff.

00:14:43   And I recognize whenever I talk about this, people in media

00:14:46   are like, well, you're asking for the past.

00:14:48   You're asking for like mainframe computers and command

00:14:52   lines in an age of the GUI and just accept the future.

00:14:55   And like, I'm trying.

00:14:56   I'm trying super hard.

00:14:59   Whenever I am not at my office, I

00:15:01   am using one of these computers and trying

00:15:03   to use it in the way that it's meant.

00:15:05   And I just hit that wall every time.

00:15:07   And there are different walls for these different computers.

00:15:09   So the Surface Go, the thing that's

00:15:11   really interesting about Windows is it never tells you no.

00:15:15   It never says, hey, you know what?

00:15:17   I can't do this.

00:15:17   There's this weird wall here.

00:15:19   And you have no idea how to get a file onto this thing.

00:15:22   You could always do whatever the hell you want on a Windows

00:15:25   computer.

00:15:25   But on a Surface Go, being able to do whatever the hell you

00:15:29   ends up being a huge problem, right?

00:15:32   The cognitive load ends up being holding yourself back

00:15:34   from like opening up the 10th Chrome tab.

00:15:37   Whereas that's not a problem on the iPad.

00:15:39   The iPad will never screw up,

00:15:41   but there's just things that it just refuses to do.

00:15:44   - Yeah, you can't shoot yourself with an iPad.

00:15:47   - Yeah.

00:15:48   - And sometimes, you know, sometimes you need a gun.

00:15:51   (laughing)

00:15:53   So the Surface Go is the one

00:15:57   that does it it i get confused which one is the surface go so the surface go is the it's the tiny

00:16:05   one so microsoft their whole surface line they've got the surface pro which is their their you know

00:16:09   thing with the kickstand and you know they've been around forever and it started off really badly

00:16:14   because they had it running windows rt which was an embarrassment of an operating system and that

00:16:19   windows 8 didn't make it much better blah blah blah blah it's come around to being a really nice

00:16:23   pretty flexible device and people like it. But I think most people just use it as a laptop. And then

00:16:28   every now and then, if you want to read a book or something, you can flip the keyboard around.

00:16:32   The Surface Go is the tiny version of it. So it's, I forget the size of the screen. It's like,

00:16:39   I don't know, 10 inches or something. Pretty ridiculous. But it's about the size of the small

00:16:43   iPad. And- Meaning not the iPad mini, but like the small iPad Pro.

00:16:51   like the 11-inch iPad Pro, yeah.

00:16:54   And the reason I like it is, one,

00:16:56   it lets me do a little bit more work stuff

00:16:59   than I can on an iPad, just because I

00:17:01   need to drag and drop an image without having to try four

00:17:04   times in a row to do it.

00:17:05   It honestly comes down to that.

00:17:07   But also, they have a version that has LTE.

00:17:10   And man, I do not ever want to buy another computer again

00:17:14   that doesn't have LTE built in.

00:17:16   And I understand why companies don't make them.

00:17:19   they barely sell, especially if you have a computer with an Intel chip, getting it to

00:17:24   integrate well, turns out to be pretty difficult. And you have to have a whole lot of extra

00:17:28   parts on there, whereas on an ARM chip, you know, the whole thing can be built into the

00:17:31   the SOC.

00:17:32   I wonder if that's the long story short of why Apple still doesn't have a MacBook with

00:17:38   LTE. And because when you ask them, they they they really go off the rails. I mean, they

00:17:46   Apple product marketing people are usually very good about even giving a non answer but the non answer on why aren't there LTE max is

00:17:53   Really like I get to the end of it. I'm like, what did you say?

00:17:57   I don't even understand what I don't even understand what you just said like

00:18:00   They have an answer ready to go

00:18:02   But it's like talks you around in a circle and it's like you feel like you just got pickpocketed

00:18:07   Yeah, I think that putting LTE on a computer

00:18:11   represents like a half dozen compromises you you compromise on sales numbers because no one no one buys them really

00:18:17   You compromise on the system design of the thing itself because you have to put an extra Qualcomm chip

00:18:24   And then you have to make sure it works in there and they got to figure out how that goes

00:18:27   You and then you you compromise on the body of the computer because you have to have a SIM card, right?

00:18:32   And you add the antennas

00:18:35   Yeah

00:18:35   And the other thing about the antenna is that everybody on all of these devices everybody wants to use aluminum right now

00:18:42   Yeah, aluminum is the material of the decade and you can't get cell signals through metal, right?

00:18:48   So you've got to have some you know, you got to do something to get the antenna on the outside

00:18:51   Yeah, and I just think that you start stacking those compromises up and I don't know Johnny Iver somebody inside Apple's just like nope

00:18:58   That's that's one too far

00:18:59   I mean, I'm sure that if Apple could they would they get rid of the you know

00:19:04   SIM card door on the iPhone, right? And they would be right to but the the way that, you know,

00:19:10   carriers work. So not gonna happen. So let me, this is actually a good I didn't have this in

00:19:16   my notes to talk about, but I should, because it's the sort of thing that I don't want to write an

00:19:20   article about, because I feel like I would waste two days on it. And it's a little too self survey

00:19:26   to be an article, but it's a good podcast rant is, all right, my family is on Verizon, and we

00:19:32   have a family plan. And Verizon has a pretty good deal. I think you have to pay a $30 activation

00:19:38   fee, which is total bullshit. And it really, really it's like $30 that feels like 300 to me,

00:19:44   morally, it I really hate it. But you get an iPad on the family plan. And then after that,

00:19:49   you just pay 10 bucks a month for the extra device. And it's just uses the shared pool data.

00:19:55   And you can just sort of keep track of how much data your family uses and adjust your plan. You

00:20:01   you know, it's like turning a dial, they make it very easy to say, you know what, let's go from 15

00:20:05   to 20. Because we're going away, you know, this summer, we're going to be traveling, we're going

00:20:09   to be on LTE all the time. It's once you're on it, it's pretty easy. And so it's only 10 bucks

00:20:13   more to get another device on, which is a great deal now. So actually, no, it's not. Well,

00:20:18   why are you paying that 10 bucks? I actually I agree with you that that is actually it is kind

00:20:25   of offensive after they had the activation fee. You're right. But still it for me the 10 bucks a

00:20:32   month it there's a moral outrage that I have to pay anything at all. But yeah, it's it's a good

00:20:39   deal. Yeah. So all of my LTE devices are on project fi which is Google and I'm sorry, it's called

00:20:47   they just changed the name to Google Fi and assign it maybe they're not going to kill it like they've

00:20:50   They've killed every other communications product

00:20:52   they've ever made.

00:20:53   And I love it because if you don't use that much data,

00:20:58   it's pretty cheap.

00:20:59   It's 10 bucks a gig flat, that's it.

00:21:00   And it's 20 bucks for a phone line.

00:21:02   But data only devices cost nothing.

00:21:05   So you can just go to the website and order a data SIM.

00:21:08   And I've got like four of them just sitting around

00:21:10   and anything you put them in, they just work.

00:21:12   They come off the same bucket of data.

00:21:14   They don't cost anything per month.

00:21:15   They're just around and they've got LTE if you need them.

00:21:18   Yeah, that and then there's a nice cap on the fee where it's like if it's one device,

00:21:23   I think it's like after six gigabytes, which is 60 bucks, then you don't pay anymore until

00:21:29   you get to like 25 gigabytes or something and then they just slow you down. So yeah,

00:21:33   they slow you down and then you can pay a little extra to turn it off. Right. So it's

00:21:36   really good. So if you use seven gigabytes or eight gigabytes on a device, you don't

00:21:40   even pay over the 60. No, it's a really good rate. Well, here's the thing I don't use I

00:21:46   I don't put my personal iPad on the family Verizon account. I have an AT&T account for

00:21:50   it simply because I like the safety of having a second network, you know, especially in

00:21:58   airports. I don't know why, but it's like every airport in the country, in my opinion,

00:22:02   in my experience, there's like, each terminal gets reception on one carrier, maybe, maybe.

00:22:08   And it's like, of all the places in the country that should be saturated with cell service,

00:22:12   it should be airports like every single person in the airport is on their phone. I don't

00:22:16   understand why airports have such I don't I don't know if it's a safety thing or what

00:22:20   but even in 2018 you get terrible cellular reception in airports and it often helps you

00:22:25   know like my phone on Verizon gets Nada and the iPad with a TNT get something but it's

00:22:35   it's like your options on a TNT and because I just got a new iPad I reviewed it I reviewed

00:22:39   the whole thing and what am I paying for it. And it's like, I think it's like 15 bucks

00:22:44   a month that you can get something from AT&T, but it's literally like 250 megabytes or something

00:22:50   of data. It is preposterously low. So I'm paying 50 bucks a month for my iPad to get

00:22:56   seven gigabytes of data, which is a lot of money for a second device. I mean, that's

00:23:00   600 bucks a year, but I checked and I actually like went through my account and looked and

00:23:06   And I use three, four, you know, last few months, three, four, five gigabytes at a time

00:23:10   because I use it all the time when I travel. So I do use it, but it kind of sucks. And

00:23:18   I'm starting, you know, I'm wondering, you know, should I just cancel it and just take

00:23:21   my chances with Verizon everywhere? But anyway, here's the thing I went through is my, I had

00:23:26   a SIM card for my old iPad on AT&T and I popped it out and I put it in my new iPad, the iPad

00:23:35   and it worked and I'm I was on the account but when I went to setting cellular to like do this thing where I was like

00:23:42   I want to review my account and see if I'm getting the best deal

00:23:45   Should I switch or whatever it would it had like no I forget what the interface said

00:23:49   but it was like it wouldn't let me sign into my AT&T account and

00:23:53   I have to go through this crazy thing and I went through the website and they wouldn't take my password

00:23:59   and I had to reset my password and blah blah blah and it's like

00:24:04   And then I found out the password reset wasn't wasn't kicking in and then I found a second form on the AT&T website

00:24:11   for like iPad users who can't log in and

00:24:14   Instead of just your email address. They wanted your email address and like the EMEI

00:24:19   Identifier. Yeah

00:24:23   And the SIM card number so I could get the SIM card number pretty easy, but the EMEI number it wouldn't work

00:24:28   It kept saying this isn't recognized. And then I realized it was it probably wanted my old iPads

00:24:35   EMEI number

00:24:37   And I went to the old one and that one didn't work and then I thought about it and I thought you know

00:24:41   I've been using an AT&T since I had like a 2014 or 2012

00:24:45   iPad mini I'm like Jesus do I even still have that so I like had to go through my office

00:24:50   I mean this seriously took me like like an hour

00:24:52   Find an old iPad mini from like 2012 the first one I had with like cellular fire that thing up

00:24:58   and get the EMEI number off that and it worked. Holy shit that it actually let me in. I mean,

00:25:05   I probably should have just called it actually probably would have taken me less time and less

00:25:08   aggravation to actually get on the phone and call them. But yeah, I had to go through all of that.

00:25:12   And then it finally worked. And I had this SIM card and I went through all that work to get the

00:25:17   SIM card working. And then I thought, well, what about this eSIM thing? Isn't that nice? And and

00:25:21   so I did the thing to switch my iPad to the eSIM. And that worked. But after I went through all that

00:25:27   work to get the SIM card working. And then after I did

00:25:30   this, I found out like immediately like within a minute,

00:25:33   I was googling something. And I found out that because AT&T is

00:25:37   AT&T once you lock your once you put your eSIM on an iPad on

00:25:42   AT&T, it is permanently locked to AT&T. What? Yes, I'm not

00:25:47   making this up. So even though it's a virtual SIM, it is a

00:25:51   virtual SIM, it is permanently locked to AT&T. And I guess

00:25:55   there is some kind of way that you can go to an AT&T store and

00:25:58   ask them beg them and they'll maybe if you cancel your

00:26:01   account, maybe they'll unlock the device. Yeah, I I'm not

00:26:05   making this I never would have done this. If I had known this,

00:26:07   I would have just stuck with the SIM card I had at work. But now,

00:26:11   not only is my iPad, e SIM locked to AT&T, I no longer have

00:26:15   a SIM card, I can pop out and put in a new iPad. Yeah. God, it

00:26:19   was what a mistake. What a nightmare. And so of course, long

00:26:22   way of saying I kind of get why device makers are aren't putting LTE into everything. Right.

00:26:28   Yeah, fair enough. Yeah. I don't know I deal with with switching carriers and dealing with

00:26:33   this crap all the time. My biggest headache recently and this is one that I prayed nobody

00:26:38   ever has to deal with was getting the palm phone activated on Verizon. That little thing.

00:26:45   Yeah. And by the way, I pray no one ever has to go with this because nobody should buy

00:26:48   this thing. I'm actually I'm supposed to put my review of it next week. We'll see if I

00:26:51   around to it. All right. Yeah, hold that thought. I'm gonna do our my first sponsor. So funny.

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00:29:55   My thanks to Bank activity. Alright, this palm phone. Yeah. I saw this a month ago, somebody

00:30:03   at the Apple, I think it was, I forget what we were doing in New York. I don't know.

00:30:09   One of the things, oh, it was the iPhone XR, when the iPhone XR came out and there were

00:30:14   press briefings in New York and one of the other writers had the Palm phone, so I got

00:30:19   to see it. I wanted it to be good.

00:30:23   Yeah, I wanted it to be good, not because I have a super long history with Palm, but

00:30:29   Just because I like the idea--

00:30:31   again, small computers-- I like the idea of a small phone.

00:30:34   And everyone got really jazzed about this idea

00:30:36   that you could have a phone that would keep you less distracted.

00:30:40   But man, it's just bad.

00:30:42   It's bad in every way.

00:30:44   It doesn't have volume buttons.

00:30:47   It doesn't have volume buttons.

00:30:49   The battery is terrible, which is--

00:30:55   if your whole job is to have a phone that you

00:30:57   take with you on a weekend trip or something. It should last at least a day and it can't.

00:31:02   And this isn't just me using it. It's me, I don't know, having it around and like turning

00:31:09   on every now and then to test it a little bit. It's just, it's terrible.

00:31:12   Tom Bilyeu (01h00m 10s): I forget who had it at the Apple event,

00:31:15   but he was showing it and it was 10 30 in the morning, or maybe even earlier,

00:31:18   but it was around 10 in the morning. And this was at 37%. It was comical.

00:31:27   And I mean to go back to the the carrier stuff

00:31:31   I'm sure you know, the the guys who started this company

00:31:35   They you know, one of them was a former Samsung guy and he made some pretty decent devices for Samsung back in the day

00:31:42   And so I believe that they were like an independent company that started up but they got captured by

00:31:49   Verizon just immediately so you can't buy this thing on its own

00:31:53   You just can't you can't go buy it and make it a phone. You can only buy it as an add-on device on Verizon and

00:31:59   It is impossible to use it and get text messages on it

00:32:04   Unless you use Verizon's text messaging app, which is called message plus

00:32:08   Dude if you want to experience the worst messaging app on planet earth

00:32:16   download and install message plus it has

00:32:20   Custom emoji it has a feature if you want where you can have your

00:32:24   Usage tracked so that they can share your information with oath AOL oath. Yeah, you know

00:32:30   Work that also which sites it has a feature where if you want they can suggest

00:32:35   Greeting cards to you that you can buy in the app

00:32:38   And it's slow and it's buggy

00:32:41   But it's the only way to get a text message on Verizon that doesn't use the classic SMS system

00:32:47   but comes over IP.

00:32:49   And otherwise, you don't get your text messages

00:32:52   on this thing.

00:32:53   It's ridiculous.

00:32:55   I'm downloading it right now on the Pixel 3.

00:32:59   My Pixel 3 is not even on Verizon, so I have no idea.

00:33:02   You can actually get it on the iPhone.

00:33:05   Yes, if you have-- so if I have my Verizon SIM in my Pixel,

00:33:08   I can download this on my iPhone and then

00:33:11   scan a QR code on the Pixel.

00:33:13   And then it becomes like a little iMessage app,

00:33:16   a little text messaging app on the iPhone that gets numbers that are sent to my Verizon

00:33:19   SIM on my Pixel phone. It's completely insane.

00:33:22   It refused to run because I wouldn't give it permission to make phone calls.

00:33:28   Yeah, sorry. And this, by the way, is why I spent the last month emailing every single

00:33:35   carrier in the U.S., asking them when Rich Communication Services, RCS, is finally going

00:33:41   to launch because I really want to see are they going to be as horrible with RCS as they have been

00:33:48   with literally everything else that they do. It's really bad. And if you don't allow it to take over

00:33:54   as your default SMS app, it won't run. It quit. It's just, do you want Verizon messages to handle SMS

00:34:03   for you? And I said no, and it quit. Yep. Well, I installed it.

00:34:10   You don't really have phones

00:34:11   I mean and that it's it's like because I would never install the equivalent of this on my Mac because I would just assume that

00:34:17   it was putting some kind of

00:34:19   11 year old kernel extension in

00:34:21   Doing all sorts of irreparable harm in the library folder

00:34:25   Phone is so fun, even you know Android iPhone, whatever you can just install it laugh at it and then delete it

00:34:38   Well, we put it off long enough. Do you want me to rant about the pixel slate? Yes the pixel slate man

00:34:44   So if you're not familiar it is Google's new Chrome OS tablet

00:34:50   They've had Chrome OS laptops before the pixel book was last year's it's still around

00:34:53   It's it's actually a pixel book is up to number three, right? Isn't it? Like the third I forget so they had they had

00:34:59   Chromebook pixels before so they had one and two and then they took a couple years off and they made the pixel

00:35:05   slate or the pixel book and now they're making the pixel slate which is the the full-on tablet with a detachable keyboard and

00:35:13   Man everything about this thing is just frustrating and

00:35:18   Usually not good if you have the keyboard attached and it's sitting on a desk

00:35:22   It basically feels like a pixel book like a standard Chrome OS device and you got Windows and all the stuff and you can move stuff

00:35:27   Around and you might have a couple of Android apps because it can run Android apps and it's okay

00:35:33   But as soon as you do anything other than that, it just falls completely apart

00:35:36   the the response time in tablet mode to like, you know, move a window around and go into split-screen is

00:35:43   Measured like the the lag is almost a second if not more

00:35:47   Like us like it should be less than 20 milliseconds for a human not to notice anything like it could be a second

00:35:53   I and that's one of those things where I I actually read your review first and then I

00:36:00   I usually do watch the videos too, but sometimes I find that the videos are spoilers. I'd rather

00:36:06   read the whole thing first. And if I'm going to hear something again, I'd rather hear it again in

00:36:09   the video than have it spoke. But anyway, somebody on Twitter mentioned something like, Oh my God,

00:36:14   I can't see how anybody who watches Dieter's video could, you know, not say this thing is a turd. I

00:36:20   was like, Oh, I gotta watch the video. And I watched the video and like your description of it as

00:36:24   juddery, generous. It's like, how did they ship this?

00:36:28   Who at Google in their new hardware division, presumably

00:36:33   it's a guy in charge Rick Osterlow, who is pretty good guy

00:36:36   came over from Motorola back in the day. Who at Google's job is

00:36:40   it to say no, don't ship this. I don't know who that person is.

00:36:45   And that person should have said, like, I honestly don't

00:36:47   think they should have shipped this. Or they should not have

00:36:51   shipped it with the quote-unquote tablet features that it has. I would have much rather,

00:36:56   if it had been a tablet and I had to deal with the awkwardness of windows on it, I would have been

00:37:00   like, well, or it only worked in full screen or something, which is the way Chrome always used

00:37:04   to work. I would have been like, well, this is bad, but they'll fix it next year. And in the

00:37:09   meantime, at least full screen works if you just want to watch a movie or something, life goes on.

00:37:13   Instead, they tried to make it a little bit more iPad-like, and it was so bad,

00:37:19   I don't understand why nobody just said hey, you know what we don't we don't need this

00:37:24   It's not like Google makes any money off of these things. Yeah, like they get nothing out of selling this other than

00:37:29   Like a halo effect, right? It's sort of like when Microsoft first started making surface devices you'd ask

00:37:35   Well, why are you making this thing like well, you know

00:37:37   We want to we're not worried that we're gonna undercut our competitors

00:37:40   and honestly, we need to learn how to make these things so that they will learn how to make better things because

00:37:46   Windows laptops are actually they had a really long period where they were awful. Yeah, I mean and

00:37:51   After Microsoft started making the surface they all sort of like oh wait

00:37:54   We'll do it that way and they got a little bit better over time. It actually worked

00:37:58   Yeah, what Microsoft said at the time and and there was you know as longtime in you know

00:38:03   People who watch the industry it just seemed bizarre for Microsoft to be making PC hardware when they've been the company that works with every

00:38:09   How can you both be their partner and their competitor but it worked it raised the bar, you know for for PC laptops

00:38:16   Yeah, and Google's done the same thing for years with the the Nexus devices before they made this target vision started calling everything pixel

00:38:23   And the Chromebook is supposedly in the same category like here's the flagship

00:38:28   We know that a hundred thousand people at most are gonna buy this thing

00:38:31   But whatever we need to learn how to develop for this new processor and we want to teach everybody that's making the $300 Chromebooks

00:38:38   how to do it better, so we're going to make this thing.

00:38:41   But if your flagship Halo device that

00:38:44   is supposed to lead the way for the industry of how it's

00:38:46   supposed to go can't move a window around in tablet mode

00:38:49   without everything shuttering to a stop, that's a big problem.

00:38:55   And I haven't even-- that's just the baseline.

00:38:57   Like, I could go on for another 45 minutes of complaints

00:39:00   about how the keyboard folio works,

00:39:02   about how Bluetooth crashes.

00:39:04   The whole thing was just a mistake.

00:39:06   They shouldn't have shipped it.

00:39:07   I don't know. I don't know how that happens inside a company like how you get past that.

00:39:12   Hey, go or no go. And this thing is literally like the software equivalent of crumbling apart.

00:39:18   Yeah. I guess that somehow you you get a, you know, they obviously wanted to announce it

00:39:25   alongside the pixel three. So they have this ship date, you know, announcement date in late September,

00:39:30   early October, whenever that was. And they somehow had this on the whiteboard that we've got to ship

00:39:35   this then. And you know, the hardware, I guess is clearly ready. I don't think it I don't think,

00:39:40   you know, because it works so well in laptop mode. It's not crummy hardware. It's Yeah,

00:39:46   no, it's really good hardware, actually. And I feel like that's the problem. I feel like,

00:39:51   you know, if the hardware is good and hardware, you know, you can't fix can't send over the air

00:39:55   patches to hardware, you know, the hardware has to be or not be and you can talk yourself in a

00:39:59   circle that well, we can always fix software later, you know. And I guess that's it. Yeah,

00:40:04   Yeah, for Google in particular with Chrome OS,

00:40:06   they've been telling themselves that for literally years,

00:40:09   because a new version of Chrome OS comes out every six weeks.

00:40:13   And usually it's just bug fixes and a couple of tweaks

00:40:16   here or there.

00:40:18   But it's great, because you know it's secure,

00:40:21   and little features sort of pop up that are kind of useful.

00:40:24   And it's nice to know that you're not

00:40:27   going to have to wait a year for some app to get updated.

00:40:30   This is, to me, the most frustrating thing

00:40:32   using an iPhone is all of those software developers working on a new version of the app,

00:40:37   it all gets bundled into this big giant iOS update every September.

00:40:42   Trenton Larkin They've sort of been doing, I think,

00:40:45   the last at least two years, Apple's done a better job of having like a dot two or a dot three

00:40:53   around February or so, or February or March, that is sort of like the high point of the year for the

00:40:58   software. Right. But there's an awful lot of features that like, you just know that if it's

00:41:05   coming, we've got to wait till September. Yeah, yeah. Well, and, and if you think about it, like,

00:41:09   it's actually kind of nuts. Like, could you imagine if Apple wanted to update the I don't

00:41:13   know, the mail client on the Mac? I mean, I guess they kind of wait there. But an Android phone around

00:41:18   I guess, I guess on a pixel, there aren't really any apps on a pixel that ship built in just a

00:41:22   couple. If Google's got a new version of Gmail that they like, they just, it's just there,

00:41:27   because they ship everything through the infrastructure

00:41:29   of the Play Store.

00:41:31   Anyway, the point is, since they're

00:41:34   able to update this Chrome OS operating

00:41:36   system every six weeks, any time something goes out

00:41:39   that's not that great, they know that there's

00:41:42   going to be a new version.

00:41:43   They can fix it every six weeks.

00:41:44   And so I think it might lower the stakes

00:41:48   of shipping bad software.

00:41:50   Whereas with Apple, if they're really

00:41:51   going to wait a year for the next big thing,

00:41:54   or they're going to wait till the next big, you know, dot update to go out. If Apple ships

00:41:59   something that is subpar, it's a much bigger deal. Yeah, totally. Yeah. And I think that Apple is,

00:42:06   it has, I think it's part of the rhythm of the Apple calendar year, you know, the way that

00:42:11   Apple sort of does everything, you know, it, they're a very annual company. And in a way

00:42:19   that the real test is can we show this at WW on stage at WWDC? It does obviously doesn't have

00:42:25   to be ready. I mean, beta still means beta. But like, they'll never show a mock up of what it's

00:42:33   going to look like, like when they do a demo of iOS 13, this coming June, whatever they're showing

00:42:38   is actual software running on an actual device. And so if it's not in close enough form that they

00:42:44   could actually demo it on stage, it doesn't make the cut for iOS 13. It's, you know, you're sorry,

00:42:50   your your team is on iOS 14, you know, yeah, come back next year. And that gives them then three

00:42:56   months to get it in shape, you know, like, okay, we've demoed it, we've promised it. Let's, you

00:43:01   know, let's actually finish it. But it can't be like, one frame per second.

00:43:08   Well and apple apple is so consistent about shipping the stuff that they demo that the few times when they don't

00:43:15   It just it becomes a you know

00:43:17   A running joke that everybody can can reference and everybody knows about so right? I mean group face time was like face time air power

00:43:24   You know, I don't know like open source sync face time, I guess was like one thing but like

00:43:29   They almost never promised something on stage that they don't eventually ship

00:43:34   You know the story behind the open source face time, right?

00:43:37   I think so. But I think was it WWDC was it? I don't know if it's WWDC or Mac world Expo.

00:43:47   I think it was probably a WWDC. But either way, it was a Monday keynote. And it was like Saturday,

00:43:52   and they're doing like Saturday or Sunday. So it's like the 48 hours or 24 hours before and they're

00:43:58   doing, you know, full dress rehearsal of the keynote. Yeah, I get to the FaceTime part. And

00:44:03   Steve Jobs gets to it and says, "Hey, what about FaceTiming people on other devices?

00:44:09   Wouldn't that be great? Not everybody has an iPhone. What about FaceTiming people on computers?"

00:44:17   And they're like, "Well, I don't know. We'll think about it." And he was like, "What if we

00:44:19   just open source it? We'll open source it. We don't care. We'll make it a standard." And you're

00:44:24   like, "All right." And the FaceTime team heard about it when they were watching the keynote

00:44:30   Monday morning. And so the team is like in in their offices,

00:44:37   watching the live stream, the internal live stream of the

00:44:39   keynote, and they hear Steve Jobs saying, we're gonna make

00:44:42   it an industry standard, it's gonna be open source. And

00:44:45   they're all looking at each other. And they're like, at some

00:44:47   of them were mad, because they're like, why didn't they

00:44:50   tell me why wasn't I told and then managers are like, I got

00:44:54   me. And then engineers were like, well, we didn't write

00:44:57   this, you know, we can't open up the source of this. You know,

00:45:00   there's x, y, and z reasons that, you know, if you were

00:45:04   going to make it open, you would write it, you know, the different

00:45:06   way, right, or not use certain patents or license certain

00:45:09   things. So like, we can't open source this. And, and basically,

00:45:13   that's one of the reasons why I mean, there was a like a very

00:45:15   specific lawsuit that Apple was involved in, over some kind of

00:45:19   awful, awful software patent. And it's partly why FaceTime

00:45:22   got bad for a couple of years, because they actually had to

00:45:24   like change the code. But so there's other reasons too. But basically, long story short of why

00:45:30   FaceTime never went open sources. It was, it never really could. It was just something Steve Jobs

00:45:35   pulled out of his ass like the weekend before. So I've heard I don't know this for a fact. I don't

00:45:40   have I don't have a first hand report of that. I have secondhand report of that. But that's

00:45:45   incredible. Sounds true, right? Yeah, totally. Sounds like Steve Jobs. Right. But yeah, I think

00:45:51   that June WWDC tent pole in the calendar of if we can't show it, it doesn't ship in September.

00:46:02   I mean, the only thing that they ship in September that they don't show at WWDC

00:46:05   are features specific to the new phone, like so face ID they didn't show. But I think internally,

00:46:12   it obviously had to be ready months in advance. It's not like in June you could say, well,

00:46:19   FaceTime isn't working yet, but don't worry. We'll have it by September.

00:46:23   People just ship stuff constantly throughout the year. And so it's funny, in some ways,

00:46:34   their big developer conference is Google I/O in May. And in some ways, it's just like,

00:46:40   "Well, we'll just announce whatever is close right now, I guess." But nobody actually holds

00:46:46   anything for it. Like this is stuff that's ready this week. So

00:46:48   this is like the thing I got it. You know, I people were mad at

00:46:52   me because I called them out on it. But they they had the what

00:46:55   was the thing called where they were gonna duplex duplex. Yes.

00:46:58   And I said, Hey, this looks, this looks like a pile of

00:47:00   horseshit. And here we are in November, and there's still no

00:47:05   duplex. There's a very cool similar feature in in, in the

00:47:09   latest Android operating system that your phone can answer a

00:47:13   Robocaller, a super cool feature that I really, really hope Apple can somehow steal.

00:47:19   Because it's awesome, but it isn't duplex. It isn't telling your Google Assistant to make you a

00:47:27   dentist appointment. So yeah, it's launched in like a tiny, tiny, tiny, tiny beta. And we've

00:47:34   actually managed to make a couple reservations for it. There was a thing last week where someone

00:47:39   at a restaurant posted a recording of it. And just last week, you just let yeah and and you listen to

00:47:45   it and it says hey I'm from Google something something something but it never said I'm a

00:47:49   robot right or never said I'm the assistant it's just that I'm calling from Google on behalf of

00:47:54   so and so and so like you change your disclosure this is bad and it turns out that that was one of

00:47:59   the duplex calls that was actually completed by a human being and so it's and the other thing is

00:48:06   So far as we can tell the only restaurants that it's rolled out to are restaurants that have

00:48:10   Uh, like already a pre-existing pretty close relationship with google through their their small business thing

00:48:16   um, and and so

00:48:18   I don't know. I think it's going to be a long time before this becomes a regular feature that that anybody uses people totally

00:48:24   misunderstood my skepticism too, like I wasn't saying like

00:48:28   uh, you know and people some people jump on the whole like they think that i'm in the bag for apple and they're like

00:48:33   Oh my god, can you know you think syria is so great, you know?

00:48:36   know, you have no idea how good Google Assistant is. It's like,

00:48:38   No, I know exactly how good Google Assistant is. I use these

00:48:41   things. And I get it. And I totally understand that if

00:48:44   there's any organization on earth that might have something

00:48:48   like this actually working in a lab, it's my money would be on

00:48:52   Google, you know, maybe my second bet would be on Amazon.

00:48:54   You know, I get it that Google is working on things like this, I

00:49:00   get it that we will this something like this will be

00:49:02   available eventually. I'm just saying that what they showed on

00:49:05   stage and said would be shipping in a couple of weeks. And, you know, in the quote unquote

00:49:11   near future to like everybody, it that isn't, that isn't what they're that isn't happening.

00:49:16   Yeah, well, you know, there may be no other organization that could do this than Google.

00:49:21   But there's also I don't know if there's any other organization that could be as,

00:49:24   I don't know, make an unforced error of not understanding how people would react to it.

00:49:30   Yes, right. So it doesn't occur to them, right, that people might be,

00:49:35   one, skeptical about the, you know, whatever edits they made to the audio to like, have it fit in the

00:49:39   keynote, like, is this real or not? And two, that people would be like, wait a minute, I don't know

00:49:43   if I want to talk to a robot. Like it just they're like, they're so impressed with how cool it is,

00:49:47   they doesn't, they don't think about that there are people outside of the Silicon Valley bubble,

00:49:51   they'll be like, wait a minute, that's or no, or not that you don't want to talk to a robot,

00:49:57   but that you don't want to sick a robot on your hairstylist, you know, like, hey, I've been going

00:50:02   into her for 10 years. She knows me. I don't want to have her talking to a creepy robot on behalf of

00:50:09   me. And then I go in there and have to look her in the eye and say, "Oh, yeah, I did that. I sent

00:50:15   a robot to make this appointment for me." Even though, you know, and again, it will happen and

00:50:20   we will be doing it and it'll all seem normal, but it has to be introduced the right way.

00:50:25   Jon Streeter Yeah.

00:50:27   I want to keep talking on some of this Google stuff. And I want to talk definitely want

00:50:32   to talk about the pixel three. But in the meantime, I'm gonna take another break here

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00:53:01   Anything else on the pixel slate here? I guess the one thing here's the thing that stuck out

00:53:08   out to me from your review is that the the the pixel book is

00:53:14   is probably about as good as a Chromebook could be. I don't

00:53:19   have one, but I've seen it is very nice. You know, nice

00:53:23   display. It's a nice hardware laptop. It's got a good track

00:53:27   pad. It's got a good keyboard. And it does. If you like Chrome

00:53:33   OS, if you want a Chrome system running on a laptop, it's about as good as you could

00:53:39   get, you know, I mean, you know, obviously, it's a year old at this point. So there's,

00:53:42   you know, some kind of speed bump they could get, which but probably isn't worth it. Like,

00:53:48   I don't think it's, it's not just Apple, that sort of is on an irregular update schedule

00:53:54   for their laptops based on Intel CPUs. There really is sort of a, like, when I talked to

00:54:00   some people at Apple about, well, look, why are the Why did it take so you know, why aren't

00:54:05   why doesn't why don't you get a one year update every on everything in the MacBook lineup every

00:54:09   year. And they're like, you know, some sometimes, you know, there's just diminishing returns on

00:54:13   Moore's law at this point where it's not even worth it. Yeah. But it's really it's a great

00:54:19   realization of what a Chromebook could be. Whereas the pixel slate is so flawed, right? And to me,

00:54:26   it almost is like a mar on the pixel brand. Yep. You know, and the phone and we'll get to it. But

00:54:33   the phone is the both phones, the big one and the small one are very, very, very good realizations

00:54:39   of what an Android phone can be in 2018. And it's, you know, the pixel brand is a good one,

00:54:45   and then they stick this turd out there. Yeah, it's it's baffling. And the there, there was a

00:54:52   rumor that there was going to be an update to the Pixelbook that would make it better by making the

00:54:57   bezels around the screen smaller. And I don't know, it may have just been, I mean, the rumors

00:55:03   came from like these advertisements that were popping up and people would like pixel peep them

00:55:07   and be like, this screen is too big. So it may have just been like an overzealous like marketer

00:55:11   that was like, I'm going to make this thing look better and make the screen bigger. But anyway,

00:55:15   there were some rumors that they're out there. And if they had done that, and you know, bumped

00:55:19   the processor to this year's processor.

00:55:21   Everyone was like, "All right, yeah, they made it a little bit better."

00:55:24   I would have said, "Oh, they fixed the Bluetooth."

00:55:26   You know, a couple of things and everybody would have been pretty happy.

00:55:31   Now, when you put the Pixel Slate into tablet mode, you can flip the keyboard around.

00:55:36   You run into a lot of the same problems, but because it's a laptop that you just use

00:55:41   as a tablet if you want to every now and then, which everybody tells me when I talk to people

00:55:45   in the industry, "Nobody does this."

00:55:47   you have a computer with a touchscreen that you can flip around to tablet mode. Everybody who buys

00:55:53   it, it's like, Oh, yeah, this is great. I'm not carrying another tablet. I'm going to watch movies

00:55:57   on it. And then nobody ever does anything except use it as a laptop, right? Right? Because a lot

00:56:02   of them have it set up so you can you can turn it upside down and set it up like a like a TP almost

00:56:11   to watch videos. But why would you do that? Why not just watch the video in laptop mode?

00:56:16   Right. It's like it does it really mar your movie viewing experience on the plane to have the keyboard in front of you as

00:56:21   Opposed to having the keyboard behind you in an upside down v

00:56:25   Yeah, I mean you can you can

00:56:28   Get a little bit more space to put your weird little you know drink and yeah, I guess tray of food there, but whatever. Yeah

00:56:35   um

00:56:37   But anyway, the what you would the pixel book doesn't do as well in tablet mode

00:56:41   it feels like the pixel slate in a lot of ways. But because nobody ever does that it doesn't matter

00:56:46   as much. Whereas the pixel slate is constantly like as soon as you detach that keyboard,

00:56:50   as soon as you flip that keyboard around, it's like, all right, I'm a tablet now. And it's just

00:56:54   so bad at being a tablet. It drives me crazy. So my son, it's interesting, my son's 14.

00:56:59   He had a broken MacBook Pro, like a four year old MacBook Pro, and it eventually gave up the ghost,

00:57:07   but it worked except that I think the internal USB controller was broken so his keyboard

00:57:11   only kind of worked and his trackpad didn't work at all. Nothing, not even like little

00:57:17   easily had to like plug a mouse into the side to like use the mouse. And he still while

00:57:23   we're deciding what to get him as a replacement still used it as his YouTube machine rather

00:57:28   than use his iPad just because the he just he's just so used to using you know the fact

00:57:35   you don't need to stand right right and walk around the house and wherever he sits down the

00:57:40   the screen is already propped up right so even without a working trackpad he still used a macbook

00:57:46   to watch youtube and again you know for as many hours as he'd be allowed to uh rather than use an

00:57:52   ipad just because it's already propped up i mean that's how useful the the laptop form factor is

00:57:56   i really don't see the need for the bend around backwards thing yeah i i guess i would i have it

00:58:03   like on an iPad in particular like this. The funny thing is I don't like the new keyboard on the new

00:58:08   iPad Pro. Because I do use that flip around thing when I'm on a plane or when I'm like,

00:58:13   lying in bed. I'll like a flip around then you can get the screen just a little bit closer to your

00:58:17   face. And then it just if you don't have to worry about hitting the key or something.

00:58:22   And you can't do that with the new keyboard, the old keyboard you could you could put into a

00:58:28   sort of just like, like an easel mode or something. Yeah. And the new keyboard, you can't do that.

00:58:33   Like it's it's either the keyboards flip behind it or it's sitting there in front of you

00:58:37   And it's I get why they did it. It's better because like it's a little bit stabler on your lap in that mode

00:58:43   Yeah, and it also means I don't know they could move that smart connector to the back and that you know weird place

00:58:49   And there's there's probably a bunch of reasons why it's better

00:58:52   I'm sure all their you know research and all their usability testing say that people prefer it

00:58:56   and I I had this weird guilt about not liking it because I

00:59:00   Spent two years making fun of the original smart keyboard because it had this origami fold

00:59:05   And yeah, it was awkward to like fold it up, but it turns out it was actually a pretty good solution

00:59:10   Exactly. I think there's somebody at Apple who came up with it. Who is like see see I

00:59:16   Know exactly what you mean it was it's like better as a laptop with the new keyboard

00:59:21   But the other one all the hmm. Why is this so funny?

00:59:26   Why do you have to fold it and learn how these funny things it was and why does it have this bulge and

00:59:30   And now it's like, yeah, I guess I kind of see why.

00:59:33   Because then you could just put this one thing on it

00:59:35   and use it everywhere from laptop mode

00:59:38   to airplane tray mode, you know.

00:59:41   The other thing, here's the other thing

00:59:44   about the Pixel Slate that I found baffling immediately

00:59:47   right at the announcement is why in the world

00:59:51   are you making people who might buy this

00:59:54   choose between this baffling array of CPU options

00:59:57   and RAM options and all of it.

01:00:01   It is mystifying.

01:00:05   So they had to go with Intel because Chrome on ARM, there's only been one good Chromebook

01:00:10   on ARM in my opinion, the rest of them have been pretty bad.

01:00:14   And so they wanted to go with Intel.

01:00:15   And if you go with Intel, you are stuck with Intel choices.

01:00:19   And I think in their head, they were like, "All right, well, when people buy other

01:00:24   devices, you put them at like $100 price breakpoints, and then you just increase the storage. Well,

01:00:29   okay, let's do that. Well, people don't actually don't care about storage on a Chromebook.

01:00:32   They care about processor speed. And we really want to hit this, you know, $600 price point.

01:00:37   Is it six or 700? I think it's $699. Yeah, I think the low maybe it's 699. I don't know.

01:00:44   It's 599. And the do not buy that. I mean, don't buy it in general right now until they

01:00:50   they have some of these software problems.

01:00:52   I didn't realize they were still making Celeron processors.

01:00:55   Right?

01:00:56   I didn't even realize that was still a thing.

01:00:58   Man, not only are Celeron processors still a thing,

01:01:01   they also are increasing the confusion amongst other processors.

01:01:05   So the Surface Go that I just bought, like a weirdo,

01:01:07   has this thing called a gold processor.

01:01:10   I don't even know what that means.

01:01:11   And then there's the M3, which if you think M with Intel,

01:01:16   that usually means, oh, it's really slow.

01:01:17   But it turns out the new M3s are basically the same as the Core i5 and the Core i7y series

01:01:23   just with slightly lower clock speed and something, something.

01:01:27   And maybe there's a core difference, I don't know.

01:01:28   But anyway, I think they just got lost in the weeds of, "Well, we want to have $100

01:01:33   breakpoints, so let's just pick specs at these $100 breakpoints."

01:01:36   But the result is there's five different SKUs and unless you know exactly what you

01:01:43   you think you're gonna do with this thing,

01:01:45   picking one is impossible.

01:01:47   And I just, they should have just said,

01:01:50   all right, we'll make the cheap one,

01:01:52   and then we'll make the nice one,

01:01:53   and then we'll make the crazy,

01:01:55   we'll make a third one, I guess I'll let you do that,

01:01:56   that has like super insane specs, and then be done.

01:02:00   - Right.

01:02:01   - But to have two in the middle, it's just like,

01:02:03   you're getting to put that price point out in the world,

01:02:06   but you're doing it in a way that's actually going to hurt

01:02:09   the Chrome OS brand again, because just like Windows,

01:02:12   Chrome never says no, it never stops you from opening the tab, it'll slow it down. Right?

01:02:18   So people are gonna buy this thing. And they're, you know, they're gonna think it's gonna perform

01:02:21   like an iPad. And it's just super not. And they're just they're shooting themselves in

01:02:25   the face with it.

01:02:26   Right. And to me, RAM options are another one where it's like, man, that is that is

01:02:31   the old that is not something people buying this device should be worried about, you know,

01:02:36   give them enough RAM, and then that's it, then they don't have to worry about it. Because

01:02:39   I wrote about this and I got some more negative feedback than

01:02:44   I expected. And I should have known it because the people who

01:02:46   like to configure stuff built to order are are vocal about it.

01:02:51   But I like that the new MacBook Air doesn't have any CPU options

01:02:55   that you're there's just one CPU for all the MacBook Airs. And

01:03:00   there's people who say, Well, that's not because it's a good

01:03:02   idea. That's because Intel only has one chip that meets their

01:03:05   thermal specs. You know, there's one chip and one chip only that

01:03:08   meets him. So if there were more, they'd have CPU options. And it's like, Oh, maybe because

01:03:12   all the other Mac books do. But none of Apple's ARM machines have CPU options. They make one

01:03:17   chip for the model year. And that's it. And it's that chip is good. And, you know, that's

01:03:24   it. You don't have to worry about it. You pick storage, and that's it. Yeah, it to me,

01:03:28   it's delightful.

01:03:29   Yeah. And for the MacBook Air, just philosophically, like, it's the mass market laptop that most

01:03:34   people should get in terms of a Mac by far.

01:03:39   And why not just give them one processor option?

01:03:44   By offering something up, you get an upsell, I guess.

01:03:47   But the upsell is there on the MacBook Pro.

01:03:51   It's already confusing enough that they've

01:03:53   got the 12-inch, the MacBook Air,

01:03:56   and the 13-inch MacBook Escape all sort of jostling around

01:03:59   in the exact same price range.

01:04:01   you were to throw on upsells on processor speed on the MacBook Air on top of that confusion,

01:04:06   nobody would know what to do. Right. And you know, to me, it's the way of the future with the to me,

01:04:12   inevitable move to Apple's in house ARM chips for at least for MacBooks, whether the whole Mac line

01:04:17   goes or not, we could do a whole episode on but clearly they're going to make mobile Macs that run

01:04:21   on on their own chips. And then I just don't think they're going to have CPU options. I think,

01:04:26   you know, I don't know if they'll call them a series, maybe they'll call them some other

01:04:30   letter for the Mac chips, but they'll be the M1 chip and that's it. That's the MacBook chip

01:04:38   for this year or something like that. Maybe the MacBook Pro would get its own.

01:04:41   So this is a huge drive and hold, but I just got to ask, assuming that they're going to move

01:04:48   some Macs to ARM, I also assume that they are, what is the software fix going to be? Are they

01:04:56   just gonna like do something like Rosetta? Are they gonna just like use marzipan apps? And you

01:05:01   know, sorry for your luck. If you want to tell apps, I know, it's actually not clear to me,

01:05:04   no, it won't be the marzipan. The marzipan thing is, is I think, a red herring. I don't know,

01:05:10   maybe that's the wrong term. I don't think it's related to the switch. I think it is entirely just

01:05:16   a developer play that that there's a, and then, you know, it is true that there's more iOS

01:05:22   developers than Mac developers. And there's an awful lot of services that have native iOS apps

01:05:28   that don't have native Mac apps, or if they have a quote, native Mac app, it's really just a,

01:05:34   you know, web view wrapper. It's not really a Mac app. And those things, it would be better to have

01:05:40   the iOS thing running like these marzipan apps. But I have a rant, I will get it out soon. I'll

01:05:47   get it out before the end of the month. But I think the marzipan apps are garbage. I think

01:05:52   they're, they're some of the worst apps on the Mac. I cannot believe Apple shipped them. I really

01:05:57   had bought, you know, I don't want to waste the whole rant here on the show. But I think they're

01:06:02   terrible apps. I think it's absolutely baffling. I it's crazy that there's a news app and you can't

01:06:08   double click a news article to open it in a window. Like to keep it open like, like, Oh,

01:06:13   here's the story I would like to keep open because it's a long story. I want to keep reading it, but

01:06:17   but I want to read other articles. No, you're, you're, it's, you're limited to the user

01:06:23   interaction of the phone, like a four inch phone on a 30 inch iMac. It's crazy. It's

01:06:29   a garbage app. So I don't think that has anything to do with it. And they certainly couldn't

01:06:33   say marzipan apps only at this point, because, you know, they only have like these four toy

01:06:37   apps. Yeah. I the the question is, I think they would do it the same way they did the

01:06:44   Intel switch, announce it at WWDC before there actually is the hardware and tell developers and

01:06:51   say, you know, I it's so funny because I watched the video again. And I just I've watched a bunch

01:06:57   of old Steve Jobs videos recently. Simply because I it occurred to me that we're at the point where

01:07:03   it's not so sad that he's dead anymore. Right? I don't mean that. That sounds callous. But it's

01:07:10   like enough time has gone by that it no longer feels like a fresh wound. And I can watch Steve

01:07:17   Jobs videos now and just enjoy them for what they are. And I watched that one. I watched the one

01:07:23   where he announced this switch to Intel. And it's so good. It's like five minutes. And it is like,

01:07:30   he conveys so much information. But it's so amazing. I tweeted it. It's like the arguments

01:07:35   he gives are exactly the arguments that they would give for switching to from Intel to arm.

01:07:41   It is entirely about not just performance, like he says, like, Look, I we promised you a year or

01:07:48   two ago, a g5 power book. We haven't shipped it, you know, that's on us. It's our fault.

01:07:53   That's our fault, because we promised it, you know, and he took the totally said, you know,

01:07:57   we're Apple, we're the ones who said we ship it, but we can't because it's not the chip isn't there.

01:08:03   And he said, "We're looking at the PowerPC roadmap, and we have ideas for some great

01:08:10   machines we'd like to build, and we can't build those machines with the chips on their roadmap.

01:08:16   And it's not just about performance. It's about performance per watt." And then there's this chart

01:08:21   that shows performance per watt. And of course, the Intel chips had really high bars and the

01:08:26   PowerPC had puny little bars. It's like, "Wow, this is incredible performance per watt."

01:08:32   that's exactly what they're going to say about switching to ARM. I swear they could just take

01:08:39   the script and just have Phil Schiller say it instead of Steve Jobs. It is the exact argument.

01:08:45   So I think they announced it at WWDC. Tell developers, and here's Xcode whatever version

01:08:51   number makes it easy. If you've been writing independent, Swift is already, everything in

01:08:59   in Swift is already automatically just check a box and it'll all spit out ARM code. Your

01:09:04   x86 code, if you've been following our guidelines, all of your objective C code will do the same.

01:09:12   If you do have assembly, you're going to have, that's where you're, and it's rare these

01:09:18   days that people are writing assembly code, but if you do, we've got tools to help you,

01:09:23   whatever. But we're going to be shipping these next year and we will have some kind of developer

01:09:28   hardware in available in the meantime, so that you can get your apps running. Yeah,

01:09:35   and that'll be it, you know, so I don't think you have to write marzipan apps, I think

01:09:38   most and I think most modern apps will just literally just recompile. So the only problem

01:09:43   will be the older apps you have that are no longer being maintained, but you still use

01:09:49   what happens with those. Will there be some kind of emulation and what I've heard from

01:09:55   people who know is that as performant as these apples arm chips are for reasons that are

01:10:01   above my head, emulating x 86 code on arm is slow. That did right. It's it, you know,

01:10:11   emulating a power PC on x 86 12 years ago, when they made that transition could fly like

01:10:19   you really didn't notice. I mean, if you were using something really, really performance

01:10:23   heavy you might notice, but regular day-to-day apps that you would use if you launched a

01:10:28   PowerPC app with what they call it, Rosetta was the technology. You didn't really notice.

01:10:33   It was great. I don't think that that's possible, but who knows? Maybe they've got

01:10:39   a genius who can make it happen.

01:10:42   Jared: Yeah, and then the question is just how many of those legacy apps and what are

01:10:47   they? And the one that everybody pays attention to, it's the one everybody's paying attention

01:10:51   too with the iPad is probably going to be Adobe stuff.

01:10:57   And there may be this bizarro world

01:11:00   where the Adobe stuff ends up not being a problem,

01:11:03   because they made a good marzipan app.

01:11:06   Right, right.

01:11:08   If their iPad app gets good enough

01:11:09   that you could run it on a Mac and marzipan--

01:11:12   No, because the Mac--

01:11:14   I mean, it won't.

01:11:14   I know, I'm just saying.

01:11:16   There's like, if you look at the--

01:11:18   enough like, there's enough Jenga pieces sort of yeah, stacked up here that if you look three years

01:11:23   down the road, you could see a lot of bizarro things popping out of the switch to arm with

01:11:30   with with what's going on with Adobe and a few of the pro apps on the iPad. The other thing that

01:11:35   Jobs did that I could see them replaying was he was like, now what about Mac OS 10? You know,

01:11:40   how are we going to get that running on Intel? He goes, Well, let me tell you, it's always been

01:11:45   been running on Intel. We've had, and he brought up like a Google Earth image of Apple's

01:11:50   campus, and he even circled the building. He's like, "We've had a team in this

01:11:53   building right here building every single version of Mac OS X for Intel all the way

01:11:58   back to version 10.0 in 2001." And this is the total Jobsian, "Oh my God, of course

01:12:06   he did it, but it was such a crowd pleaser." He was like, "Oh, and by the way, all the

01:12:10   demos I've been showing you so far, this keynote, yeah, they're all running on this

01:12:13   right here. This is an Intel Mac. Like, and you know, he was like an hour into the keynote already.

01:12:18   Yeah. And I mean, the crowd just went nuts. I mean, they just went bananas. And of course he

01:12:23   did that. Of course, the whole thing was running on Intel up until then. But when he said it,

01:12:27   it was just like, Oh my God, it's like, I can't believe people didn't storm the stage.

01:12:31   So I would imagine him doing the same thing again. And just saying, Oh, by the way, this

01:12:37   whole thing has been running on an ARM Mac. Yeah.

01:12:41   I'm excited for it. I can't wait. I mean, you know, you've used the air. I reviewed the air

01:12:45   I think it's I think it's pretty good. But there's it just doesn't have could be so much better. Yeah

01:12:51   Yeah, it was so funny. It's so I

01:12:54   Feel for it because if I could only have one if I had to go away to

01:12:59   Desert Island for 30 days and I can only take either the iPad Pro or the new MacBook Air

01:13:05   I would take the Mac because that the Mac is what I need for work, you know

01:13:09   If I only had one I would rather have it. I think it's great. But man when you just got the new iPad Pro

01:13:16   And as frustrating as this over could be the hardware is so amazing. Yeah, man the MacBook Air just seems like oh my god

01:13:24   Why can't I have this in this?

01:13:26   It feels anyway

01:13:30   And you I feel I bought of course the 11-inch iPad Pro even though I had the 12.9 inch for review my wife

01:13:39   absolutely loves it. My wife loves the iPad. My wife is prototypical, uses her iPad way more than

01:13:46   every other device, phone, Mac combined, and just loves the 12.9 inch because if it's your main

01:13:52   computer, it's fantastic to have that 13 inch size. Me, I just love this tiny little 11 inch

01:13:58   thing that is so super lightweight. It just feels so amazing to me. Yeah.

01:14:03   Yeah, I have last year's 11. And I don't think I'd go up to the 12. Now, if Apple with iOS 13,

01:14:11   you know, make some moves, you know, I would, I would think about it pretty seriously, actually.

01:14:18   I don't know, I would have to be for me, probably never, just because I know I'm always going to

01:14:24   have a Mac until they pry it away from me. But I that's why I like having the secondary, portable,

01:14:31   biggish big way bigger than a phone screen. That just is optimized for being crazy small

01:14:36   and lightweight. Yep. Yep. Where were we? We were we were working our way to the pixel

01:14:45   three and we went sideways. So the pixel three. Is that your main phone? Yeah, although I'm

01:14:55   My SIM's in an iPhone right now, which is fine.

01:15:00   I've got an iPhone 10.

01:15:02   But I'd say I'm probably like 65%, 70% Pixel, and 20%, 35%

01:15:08   iPhone.

01:15:10   And which Pixel do you have, the bigger one or the smaller one?

01:15:13   So this time around, I went with the smaller one,

01:15:16   partially because I didn't want to look at the Doofy notch

01:15:19   on the Pixel 3 XL, and partly because after using

01:15:25   the iPhone 10, I just didn't want to go to something that felt oversized.

01:15:30   Yeah, I can see that. I like this. I have the smaller one. I bought the smaller one.

01:15:38   And I've been using it a fair amount, but I never actually did what I thought I was

01:15:43   going to do, which is try to just use it as my full-time phone for at least two weeks

01:15:47   because I so quickly determined that there's just no way I want to use Android. I really

01:15:55   I just don't like it. I think this is the best version of it that I've ever seen.

01:16:02   And you know, it is what it is, but there's no point to me using it full time. So I'm

01:16:06   sort of treating it I bet I've had it with me everywhere. I'm sort of just using it

01:16:09   as a camera. Yeah. And I love the size. I don't know it to me is actually a better

01:16:18   size than the iPhone 10. I really, really like the size of this phone. And I like the

01:16:23   weight. It is, I forget exactly how many grams. I actually got out my little precision kitchen

01:16:30   scale and I know I could look up the tech specs, but I weighed them and it's, it is

01:16:34   noticeably lighter than the iPhone 10. And by 10 I mean 10 and 10 R and 10 S and 10 S

01:16:42   max. But it doesn't feel like insubstantially light. It feels like, oh, this is the way

01:16:49   iPhones used to weigh.

01:16:50   Yeah, the the weirdest craziest thing for me is when I bounced from pixel 3 back to an iPhone 10

01:16:57   The difference here. It's it's measured on like, you know millimeters me. It's gotta be less than 10 millimeters of

01:17:03   5 millimeters is the width. Yeah, the iPhone 10 feels so much wider than the pixel 3

01:17:08   No, when you look at it, it's like yeah, this is basically the same

01:17:11   Yeah, but you just there's something about it that you're like, oh, this is the iPhone 10 is wide

01:17:14   Yeah, there is something weird about it and in the watch world

01:17:19   It's always the case that you cannot in my opinion

01:17:23   No matter how much of a if you're any level of a watch nerd

01:17:26   You have to see a watch in person before you really know if you like it or not

01:17:30   There's just absolutely no way to judge a watch from a photograph because you can say well like I like the style of it

01:17:36   but until you see it in person, you really don't know how big it is and

01:17:40   You know how thick it is and and you can see the numbers and you can say well

01:17:44   I've got a watch that's twelve point seven millimeters high and it's not too high and this one's 13 millimeters

01:17:51   So it's only three tenths of a millimeter. That'll be fine

01:17:53   And then you put it on your wrist and it feels like it's a bubble, you know, and it's the same with these phones

01:17:59   It's like I forget how many millimeter it's just tiny tiny little bit difference in width

01:18:03   And when you I'd like you said when you eyeball them side by side

01:18:06   They look about the same but then you put it in your hand and it feels narrower. Yeah. Yeah completely. I don't know

01:18:14   So what is it you don't like about Android?

01:18:16   It's totally fair. I'm like there are many things that bug me about Android it is hard to articulate

01:18:23   overall

01:18:26   on the surface there are things that just bug me because they're so obvious like

01:18:30   There's no way on the home screen to get most of the apps

01:18:34   I use like the app names don't even fit in like a desert golf

01:18:39   It so shows up as desert G dot dot dot. I mean, that's not a long app name. Yeah

01:18:45   Instagram Instagram is I don't know if you've heard of it. It's pretty well known app. I

01:18:51   Swear to God I'm not making this up

01:18:54   Instagram on my home page shows up as

01:18:57   insta

01:18:59   Grah, grah

01:19:01   Dot-dot-dot, but I swear to God but the dot-dot-dot I think is I think it's wider than the M

01:19:09   That's surreal. You must have some like zoom settings.

01:19:15   Well, I don't have the zoom setting, but I do have the font size turned up one click because the font is tiny.

01:19:20   That's another thing that I don't like. Like you can turn the font size up and it still is tiny.

01:19:26   And they use like on the home screen, they use a compressed font.

01:19:30   Yeah, it it's really there's little things. There's so many little things like that that just make me crazy.

01:19:38   Yeah, so the way that I've dealt with some of that stuff is I set up my home screen

01:19:44   So that most stuff is in folders. So I actually don't actually when I look at my home screen

01:19:48   I don't see any text at all. I just see rounded icons

01:19:51   Play store shows up as play stow

01:19:54   Yeah, that's ridiculous it's a system app

01:19:58   So, I don't know I could go on and on I don't

01:20:06   It just doesn't fit my mental model for how things should work. I don't like gmail

01:20:12   Although I do think they've made the gmail app a lot better. I've

01:20:16   It's better than I remember it being on the gmail app went through a period of like two three years a couple years ago

01:20:24   Where they they put too much like webview stuff in it and it was just god-awful

01:20:29   It was even worse on the iPhone

01:20:32   And so they finally were like, oh wait

01:20:35   We should they bought this this great email company called sparrow

01:20:39   And so they finally they finally used the tech from sparrow to like fix up the gmail app

01:20:44   But it took them way too long to get it done. Yeah, the spiral guys had a good Mac app, right?

01:20:49   Or was it an iOS app? I forget. I think they had both. Maybe they had both. Yeah

01:20:53   No, I remember when they got acquired that makes sense

01:20:56   You know and there's other apps, you know Twitter the actual if you use the Twitter branded Twitter app

01:21:03   It's you know more or less the same so it's okay. Yeah

01:21:08   You know I could get by like I've said many many times before if I had to if you put a gun to my head

01:21:14   And said you either have to switch to Android

01:21:16   But you can keep using a Mac or you can keep using

01:21:19   iPhone and you have to switch your computer to anything else other than the Mac

01:21:24   I would take the Mac and an Android phone and I'd be fine

01:21:27   I mean, I'd be a little I'd be I'd gripe about it, but yeah, I'd be fine

01:21:31   whereas if you took my Mac away, I would feel like

01:21:33   I was in handcuffs. Yeah. Yeah, I'm able to switch between iOS and Android pretty seamlessly

01:21:38   I I don't really run into anything. But the reason I could do that is I'm pretty militant about

01:21:45   Turning off iMessage because I need to use Android so often. Yeah, and that's that's the only thing that allows me to do that

01:21:52   Yeah, and I have to say cuz I'm and I know Joanna Stern

01:21:56   wrote a column recently about you know, I think it was specifically when she was testing the pixel 3 about the pain of

01:22:02   of dropping off the iMessage universe.

01:22:05   - Yeah.

01:22:06   - And all of a sudden all your group iMessage things

01:22:10   don't work, it's tricky.

01:22:12   And the pain of that, and I have an alternate SIM,

01:22:15   I have a T-Mobile SIM that I used on the Android

01:22:17   so I could do that.

01:22:18   But then I'd still have to carry my iPhone around

01:22:22   in case the phone rings.

01:22:23   - Yeah.

01:22:24   - So, I don't know.

01:22:25   - And then you just use it?

01:22:26   - It just isn't worth it for me to do it

01:22:28   'cause I know I just don't like it.

01:22:30   I just don't.

01:22:31   I don't know what else to say.

01:22:34   No, that's fair.

01:22:35   It's totally fair that it honestly I feel like sometimes the only reason I prefer the

01:22:39   Android phone is because the home screen lets me put the the icons at the bottom of the

01:22:43   screen instead of at the top.

01:22:44   I did I kind of like that.

01:22:47   I don't really like the home screen on either any of these devices.

01:22:50   I feel like I feel like nobody's really made a good home screen yet.

01:22:53   And I feel like the iOS one where the apps always fill in top left down.

01:22:58   It's kind of crazy that we're in 2018 and it still works that way.

01:23:01   Especially on the plus size phones. It's like, what are you doing? Like everybody,

01:23:06   did you see what Samsung is doing on the next version of the Galaxy phones?

01:23:12   No, I don't think so.

01:23:13   They're used to be called TouchWiz, never made fun of it. And then they changed the name and now

01:23:18   they've got this thing. I think it's called One UI. And what they have done is they have made all

01:23:24   the headers on all of their apps, massive. And so literally everything is shifted down to the bottom

01:23:30   half of the screen. So like you open up messages and there's like the top half of the screen is

01:23:34   white space at the word messages. And then you can see like three or four of your recent conversations.

01:23:40   It's hilarious. I did see screenshots of that. And it's like you can kind of, I mean, maybe I

01:23:47   err too heavily on these companies rip off Apple narrative, but you can kind of see where there was

01:23:53   a meeting where they looked at like iOS 11 and they saw these big headers that Apple started using

01:23:58   these big bold headers at the top and they're like well if Apple went that big what if we went bigger

01:24:03   we can go way bigger we'll beat them let's ship this because then we'll be first and they'll be

01:24:09   forced to copy us and make the font 192 points and it's it is kind of funny too because we've

01:24:18   reached this world where everybody is sort of like yeah I guess the whole world does want you know

01:24:22   five inches phones, you know, because you can pack more stuff on them and then they

01:24:27   they've reduced like the usable size down to like where we were years ago.

01:24:31   Well, it's it's the same thing as everybody copying the notch, right? It's like it

01:24:36   actually justify it before you throw that thing on there because it does like it does look silly

01:24:41   and we've convinced ourselves that it doesn't but it just does. What do you think on the Pixel 3?

01:24:46   so I have the smaller one too, and there's no notch. It just instead has symmetrical chin and

01:24:53   forehead. But they're small, smaller than in the old days, and I'm fine with it. But they rounded

01:24:59   the corners off on the display. And there's something about the way that they rounded the

01:25:04   corners off that I can't put my finger on, and I don't—it's like there's not enough of an inset

01:25:10   for like the icons up in the top row.

01:25:14   - Yeah, if you want to hate your Pixel forever,

01:25:18   turn it off and then turn it on

01:25:21   and stare at the corners where they rounded off

01:25:24   and you will see that it's actually bigger

01:25:27   than what they round off and then they in software

01:25:29   round it a little bit smaller, more so,

01:25:32   and it's not the elegant way that the,

01:25:34   what's the-- - Liquid retina.

01:25:36   - The liquid retina that Apple does.

01:25:38   It's just they like this doesn't quite match.

01:25:40   And so they just rounded a little bit more just for the heck of it.

01:25:43   But the screen is still sitting there able to show pixels, but they just,

01:25:47   they just cut it off to like get a different, different corner on it.

01:25:50   Oh, I just did what you said.

01:25:51   And I see what you mean.

01:25:52   Yeah.

01:25:53   Oh, why won't they just let me have that?

01:25:55   Oh my God.

01:25:56   It is.

01:25:57   The corners are so much better.

01:25:58   Oh, there it goes.

01:26:00   It is funny.

01:26:03   You know, what's funny about this, this device shipping so soon after the

01:26:08   quote-unquote liquid retina did is that Apple spent time talking about

01:26:11   how much effort they put into getting the corners right on the LCD of the iPhone 10 are and

01:26:19   I

01:26:20   Guess this is an OLED. This isn't LCD, but you know, it's still getting these round corners is you know

01:26:27   There's work to be done and I know it need I didn't Eli break out a microscope with the 10 are just to show

01:26:33   You know and it's even more detailed than you think like yeah, literally at the microscopic level. Yeah

01:26:38   That's how you know the effort Apple put into getting those round corners, right?

01:26:43   And then they here's what happens if you don't put that level of effort into it

01:26:47   It just feels crowded for some reason it is a much bigger phone than I ever thought I would like

01:26:54   And I you know, it is a very large screen but yet because of the way they rounded the corners

01:26:59   I'm constantly thinking it feels a little cramped. Yeah

01:27:02   Yeah, let me add this Dieter. Here's another thing

01:27:05   I absolutely despised about Android and could I'll just never ever ever ever get used to it is

01:27:10   The the way that notifications get icons up there in the in the status bar. Oh, you don't like looking at the little

01:27:18   Stand it. I can't stand the way that if you've got three from Instagram, you've got three Instagram's up there in the status bar

01:27:25   I don't want any of them in the status bar and I don't think you can turn it off. I

01:27:30   Mean, I think you can do do not disturb. But yeah, you might be right that you can't turn it off

01:27:34   I I don't mind him. I I kind of I kind of like seeing what they're up there

01:27:38   My my my gripe goes the other way like the status bar is annoying sure

01:27:42   But the the information density on iPhone notifications with those big cloudy bubbles

01:27:49   They fixed it a little bit with iOS 12, but the speed with which I can go through notifications on Android

01:27:55   It's it's literally three times faster than what I can do on an iPhone

01:27:59   I can I could pull that thing down see everything sort of stacked and grouped together swipe way the stuff

01:28:03   I don't want act on the stuff. I want whereas with the iPhone they just feel

01:28:07   Just way more onerous to me in some way see and I love the iPhone ones this but now that they've added

01:28:15   Like I feel like now I maybe only with iOS 12

01:28:19   I feel like I finally am happy with iOS notifications

01:28:22   But I totally get your take on this like I don't I don't I don't think I Android's notification thing is bad

01:28:28   I just don't like it. Yeah, I hate the way that you can swipe things this either way and it does the same thing

01:28:34   Like I don't know why and it because in some ways I kind of see how it shouldn't matter whether you swipe left or right?

01:28:41   Because there's nothing semantic that says, you know dismiss one way take action the other right?

01:28:46   There's no natural way to swipe. So why not be able to swipe both ways? Yeah, and I so I think that's less of a

01:28:54   objective criticism and more of a I

01:28:58   I natively think in iOS idioms, and therefore this feels foreign to me.

01:29:04   Like, I don't think it's a bad design. In fact, I can kind of see how it's actually

01:29:09   a good design because you're just swiping off. It shouldn't matter whether it's left-right,

01:29:14   but it bothers me.

01:29:15   Dr. Justin Marchegiani Yeah, and this is—I have the exact

01:29:17   same problem but in the opposite direction. So the thing I most want to do with most notifications is

01:29:21   swipe them to make them go away. Just dismiss them. And the fact that on iOS, you can't—it's

01:29:27   always two actions to just dismiss a notification. You it's a swipe and a tap or like you it's a swipe

01:29:33   to open. But if you just want the thing to just go away, you can't do that. You got to swipe and

01:29:39   then tap clear. No, you can swipe it all the way and it'll go away. Which direction do you swipe

01:29:47   it left or right swipe it to the left. Oh, if you and then if you keep if you Okay, but if you do a

01:29:52   quick swipe, it opens up the buttons, but if you do a slow swipe, then it goes away.

01:29:57   See, that's crazy town.

01:29:58   Like if you're trying to—

01:29:59   Yeah, that's sort of it.

01:30:00   Okay.

01:30:01   Yeah.

01:30:02   Yeah, it is kind of crazy town.

01:30:04   Anyway.

01:30:05   But I like it.

01:30:06   Well, I'm used to it, I will say.

01:30:07   Right.

01:30:08   And I do kind of feel—honestly, I'll just say, I think iOS's notification system is

01:30:15   simpler and therefore more suited to my dumb mind.

01:30:21   the density of the of the Android one makes me feel like I'm a little bit under attack.

01:30:26   Trenton Larkin Oh, for sure. The the iOS notifications

01:30:29   are like, they're like a lower cognitive load. It's not about a dumb mind. It's that there's

01:30:35   there's less to think about when you're looking at them for sure. And so I appreciate that because I

01:30:40   need I need a lower cognitive load. Another thing hardware wise, I then to me,

01:30:51   This is baffling is why in the world did Google take this phone which is otherwise so nice

01:30:56   It really is the nicest hardware. I've seen on any phone other than an Apple phone

01:31:01   It is a very nice object in my hand. The buttons are nice

01:31:04   I

01:31:07   Didn't have the pixel - I had the pixel one and the pixel one did a thing where they they put like an etching on

01:31:13   The power button ran. I never liked that. I was like, why would you just does not feel like a nice button? It feels like

01:31:20   It feels industrial. It feels like something in the shop, you know, like a metal working

01:31:25   thing. It just does not feel appropriate. So you know, I don't know why they did that.

01:31:30   The buttons on this device very, very nice. I'm not a fan of volume buttons that are

01:31:34   a single rocker. I like to have volume up and volume down, but I'm okay with it. It's

01:31:40   a nice feeling volume button. It has a smaller camera bump than the iPhone. So put aside

01:31:48   the single lens versus dual lens. It's just it just in and of itself, a smaller camera bump is

01:31:54   inherently a good thing if image quality is maintained. Yeah. And we can we can go on a

01:32:01   whole separate rant later about, you know, photography on the pixel three, but inarguably,

01:32:06   the pixel three takes good pictures for a cell phone, very good pictures for a cell phone.

01:32:13   So the fact that it does it with a smaller camera bump is a good thing. But why in the world did they

01:32:18   do this laser etching thing on the glass on the back? What this photographs do not do justice to

01:32:27   this what they've done to the glass. It you can't you have to feel it to understand it and it is

01:32:35   to me it is not pleasant to the touch. It is it is not pleasant. At times sometimes depending on

01:32:43   the texture of my skin. And we're at that time of the year on the East Coast where my hands will go

01:32:48   from dry to sweaty, you know, because I've got gloves on and my hands get real sweaty. Or I've,

01:32:55   you know, it's just cold and I don't have gloves on and my hands get real dry, you know. So my hands

01:33:00   are all over the place skin-wise. And there are times when it has plenty of grip, but there are

01:33:05   times when it is the slipperiest goddamn phone I've ever owned in my life. Yeah. Now, Dan Seifert,

01:33:11   reviews editor at the word he he just goes off on this because this phone doesn't then

01:33:15   one plus phones do it and i don't know man like the the this like window shade thing they call

01:33:23   it where the top is glossy and the bottom is matte has been like the identifying feature of

01:33:28   pixel phones for a while if they just made it glossy glass people would have assumed it was

01:33:32   a samsung but you can see what the glossy glass part feels great and looks great and and it's

01:33:39   Obviously what the glass started at before they laser etched it so it could have just been the glossy back

01:33:45   And it would have looked like the jet black iPhone 7

01:33:48   except glass

01:33:50   Or they could have etched it on the inside so that it's like that like some kind of the color

01:33:55   Two-tone thing that they want to have right?

01:33:57   the other thing that caused

01:34:00   So every phone that comes out every flagship phone that people pay attention to always has a bunch of gates

01:34:05   like what are the problems with it and

01:34:07   The Pixel has had more than its fair share and some of them are pretty bad.

01:34:11   We've written about a few of them, but I haven't actually experienced most of them.

01:34:17   So there's an issue where like pictures don't save.

01:34:20   There's a couple other software things that are just kind of inexcusable.

01:34:25   But the the one at launch was the question of whether or not this etched glass

01:34:32   Scratches more easily than the glossy part of the glass because if you take a key and rub it up against the phone

01:34:40   It is the most terrifying thing you've ever seen because it's just you get these massive things that look like horrific gashes

01:34:47   But it turns out what's happening is it's pretty hard glass

01:34:51   And so it's actually you know, it's just like you're you're filling it in with the rattle and then you can rub it off

01:34:56   and so people did a bunch of videos showing that and then there was a YouTube fight and blah but

01:35:01   At the end of the day. I do think this thing scratches like I've got scratches on this thing

01:35:06   I don't think I would have had otherwise and it's not because I was like taking a diamond to it

01:35:11   I think it does just scratch a little bit more easily than it should

01:35:14   That it's it's like you can it's a sign to me of

01:35:19   And and again, I think that the the pixel hardware team is doing great work

01:35:23   And and I get so frustrated when I see articles like why does why does Google even bother with hardware?

01:35:29   they're, you know, their pixels never going to amount to anything in the world in terms of

01:35:34   marketing share, blah, blah, blah. And it's like, if you're only going to get into hardware, if you

01:35:38   have 20% market share, or something like that, it's, there's only going to be three hardware

01:35:42   makers, right? I think it's a great, I think it's great that Google is doing hardware. I think it's

01:35:48   great that Microsoft is doing hardware regardless of whether they are industry Titans in terms of

01:35:54   a market share or not. I think it's really good for the companies. I think it's really

01:36:00   good for their ecosystems. And, you know, and the companies are full of clever people.

01:36:05   This hardware overall is very, very good. But I think it's very clear that they're,

01:36:12   like, just 1015 years behind Apple in certain ways. And one of them is like Apple made the

01:36:18   same mistake. 15 years ago, there was an iPod nano. Yes. That was made of a crosswise. Right.

01:36:28   You could actually scratch it by staring at it hard enough, like a good hard stare. And it would

01:36:35   scratch the the polycarbonate whatever the material was of this of this iPod nano. And I remember I

01:36:43   I didn't have one right away, but I did get one fairly quickly.

01:36:47   But I remember people were putting videos up, and I thought it was like a gag.

01:36:51   People were like, "Look, if you just put it – here's my keys.

01:36:53   Here's the iPod.

01:36:54   And look, it has like – here's two scratches on it, right?

01:36:57   All right.

01:36:58   I put it in my pocket.

01:36:59   I jump around a little.

01:37:00   I take it out.

01:37:01   Now there's four scratches."

01:37:02   I was like, "Oh, that can't be."

01:37:03   It was like, "Oh, yeah, actually, that's how easily it scratched."

01:37:06   That is literally the test we did with the Pixel 3 for our review, and the same thing

01:37:10   happened.

01:37:13   I just feel like you you wind up building a company winds up building like a checklist

01:37:17   After after a thing like that and no product ever comes out again that doesn't go through

01:37:23   Put it in a pair of jeans with with a regular pair of keys and see what happens

01:37:29   The thing to watch with Google hardware on the phones is next year's pixel

01:37:35   Because this year, you know

01:37:38   They used to Nexus phones and they were basically they'd work with some company like Samsung or HTC or Huawei and make it

01:37:43   But they bought HTC's phone division. I don't know year and a half ago two years ago

01:37:48   And so this hardware is good and it is Google made hardware. You know, they did design it top to bottom blah blah blah

01:37:55   So it's not like those old the first pixel phone or the old Nexus phones were really it was technically like a Huawei phone or whatever

01:38:02   but

01:38:05   It takes a minute to integrate a whole damn company that you bought into your systems and into your processes and into your product roadmap

01:38:13   And so I think that next year's pixel will be the first phone hardware from Google that actually takes

01:38:19   Full advantage of the fact that they bought a phone company. Well, I'm not just a phone company

01:38:24   HTC was a for a while was a really good phone company like their fall from

01:38:32   the top tier of Android hand makers was kind of baffling because

01:38:36   You know and it was funny because I I don't know how I remember this because I wasn't really I'd never really cared about

01:38:43   Windows Phone but back when Windows Phone was a thing HTC was far and away the number one Windows Phone maker

01:38:48   yeah, and I thought it was a testimony to the the

01:38:51   It was a real feather in the cap of the company that they pivoted

01:38:55   You know because it's really easy to when you're number one at

01:38:58   something to stay in it and then you turn around and realize that you're on this Windows Phone boat and you

01:39:04   You you you know you're on the beach

01:39:08   The boat isn't even in the ocean anymore

01:39:11   It's like oh, how did we get here like they?

01:39:13   Sidestepped from being the number one Windows Phone maker to being a top or maybe for a while the top Android handset maker

01:39:20   Really? Well, I thought that that was a sign that boy. That's a that's a well-run company

01:39:26   That is it, you know is you know keeping their eyes on the horizon not just looking down at what they're doing right now

01:39:32   And then all of a sudden they're gone. Yeah. Well, so I mean they've been they they made the very first Android phone

01:39:37   The g1 and they made a bunch of really good Android phones later and they they were really good with materials

01:39:45   But they were never great with cameras and they were mediocre at software

01:39:50   but the thing that they didn't have was

01:39:53   Samsung's marketing budget right and like that's that's kind of the whole story is with a lot of Android manufacturers, especially in the West is

01:40:00   Nobody could compete with with Samsung and marketing and Samsung was good enough high end quality

01:40:06   That you know if you walk into a carrier store, which is what everybody did back in the day to buy a phone

01:40:12   They would just push you to Samsung and that was the end of it. Yeah. Yeah, that's but that makes sense

01:40:21   The other thing I like I bought the the Google I don't know I you I know from your tweet where you showed the unfortunate

01:40:28   Scratch on your your pixel 3 that you don't you weren't using a case at least but I bought the Google case

01:40:36   The one with the cloth fabric cloth one. Yeah. Yeah, I I'm not a case person

01:40:41   But I'm trying to be just because I I don't know why because I know

01:40:46   Now I feel it feels strange to me that I don't use an iPhone case

01:40:50   95% of the time but 95% of the people use 100% of the time like they buy it

01:40:55   They the only time they ever touch it without a case is when they take it out of the box after

01:41:01   Unboxing it and putting it under the case

01:41:03   You know and people are you know, they're very expensive devices that are easily broken when dropped and so I understand that

01:41:12   but you know, it seems to me like most people treat it like a

01:41:16   a heart surgeon treats the heart as they move it from the icebox into the transplanted patient.

01:41:24   Until they get that iPhone into a case, they act like they're handling a raw egg or something.

01:41:35   But I'm trying it. I like this Google case. It is a very nice case. And I've wasted

01:41:39   an unbelievable amount of money on iPhone cases recently as I try to find one that I

01:41:44   kind of stand. And I would say it's up there with the very best iPhone cases I've seen.

01:41:49   It's a really nice case.

01:41:50   Yeah, I am. It's just a tad thick for me. But nobody's made a good thin case for the

01:41:57   Pixel 3 yet. So that's one of the reasons I'm not using a case. But yeah, everybody

01:42:03   at the New York office at The Verge who has a Pixel swears by that cloth case. They all

01:42:07   love it.

01:42:08   I like it. And I kind of wish it was available for iPhone because the thing I do like having

01:42:12   an iPhone case for and I keep one in my backpack, but I like it when I'm like on vacation, or

01:42:18   we go to Disney World or something like that. And when I'm using my phone as a camera most

01:42:22   of the time, so I'm on vacation, and I'm in tourist mode, and I'm taking lots of snapshots.

01:42:26   I like having a case for grippiness because when I'm using my phone when I'm, you know,

01:42:31   doing that, you know, Twitter and email and stuff like that, I never feel like I'm going

01:42:35   to drop it. It's the times when I you know, I've had very few drops over the years, but

01:42:40   But the times when I feel like it's the most precarious is when I'm photographing

01:42:43   things.

01:42:44   So I like having the grip of a somewhat grippy case.

01:42:48   And I like the idea that if I do drop it and it's in a case, it's less likely to come

01:42:53   to harm.

01:42:54   This case to me is like the cloth is really nice for grippiness because it's not sticky

01:42:59   at all.

01:43:00   So there's no friction going in and out of the pocket.

01:43:02   But if you have like, if your hands are sweating because it's hot or something like that,

01:43:06   it's like the perfect texture.

01:43:08   Yeah. Yeah, honestly, the reason I don't like it is hitting the fingerprint sensor on the back.

01:43:14   There's just like an extra little angle that drives me crazy, which is silly, but there it is.

01:43:20   Trenton Larkin Well, and I will tell you, as I tell you also why I can't really bear to use this

01:43:24   as my main phone, I cannot go back not to having face ID. That's another factor. Yeah. And I kind

01:43:29   of knew that going in. Because back in June, when iOS 12 betas came out, I my habit for years has

01:43:37   has been never to, don't put the betas on my main phone

01:43:41   until at least late in the summer.

01:43:43   This year I kind of did it early

01:43:45   and I know lots and lots of other people who did notice

01:43:47   that iOS 12 was an unusually stable beta

01:43:50   throughout the whole summer, even beta one.

01:43:52   It was like the most stable WWDC beta ever.

01:43:55   So hats off to everybody who worked on that.

01:43:58   But when I got home from WWDC,

01:44:00   I wanted to put the first beta on my iPhone 8

01:44:05   and put it on.

01:44:06   I was like, all right, now I put my sim in there. I'm going to use this as my main phone

01:44:10   as I get used to iOS 12. And like an hour later, after the 10th time of just staring at it and

01:44:16   like, Hey, why isn't this unlocking? I was like, I can't use this. I, you know, took, I spent more

01:44:21   time installing the beta on it than I did actually using it before I realized I I'm ruined forever.

01:44:27   Yeah. And I have to say that having a fingerprint sensor on the back, it's not horrible,

01:44:33   but it's not. It's like a separate thing, right? Because you can't unlock, well, you can unlock

01:44:38   the phone with it, but when you're dealing with notifications on the notification screen, it's

01:44:42   an entirely different thing. Yeah. Well, and also like you just have to pick it up. So there's a

01:44:49   little, just like if it's sitting in a charging stand or something and you want to unlock it

01:44:52   without taking it off the charging stand, you know, you can't, you got to like tilt it forward,

01:44:56   you got to punch in the code and that's super frustrating. Yeah. And I, the thing, I'm sure

01:45:02   people who listen to my show are mostly all on iPhone 10 already. Well, not mostly. I know,

01:45:07   you know, I, majority, I'm sure are, you know, surprise, surprise, it's an early adopter crowd.

01:45:13   But for those who aren't, and I know that there's like a natural skepticism of people who like,

01:45:19   or even love touch ID, who are just so skeptical about switching, you know, that, that the,

01:45:26   that the new way forward from the iPhone 10 forward is not touch ID plus face ID. It's,

01:45:31   you've touch away, touch ID is gone. Now you have face ID. The thing I can't emphasize enough is

01:45:36   that once you get used to it, it's like your phone isn't locked at all, right? You just pick it up,

01:45:41   and it's raised awake, or tap to wake, right? You just tap it if you need to. And then you see a

01:45:46   notification and you're like, Oh, I would love to read that news story. I this headline is very

01:45:51   enticing. And you just, you know, open the notification and now you're reading the article.

01:45:56   It was like you never even thought about the unlock part. And going back to something where

01:46:01   it's like, "Ah, I got to stick a finger on that hole in the back of the phone." It's

01:46:05   just an irritation every single time.

01:46:07   Dr. Justin Marchegiani Yeah, totally. It totally is. And I don't know

01:46:11   when they're gonna—if they're gonna switch the in-screen fingerprint sensors that are out there

01:46:16   are pretty slow relative to what you can get if you just have a separate one. So maybe they can

01:46:22   they can switch to something like Face ID.

01:46:24   I'd like them to, but Apple probably

01:46:27   has got the thing padded up the wazoo.

01:46:29   I wonder, though, because Apple was first with the touch--

01:46:33   well, I know they weren't the first fingerprint sensor,

01:46:35   but they were the first good fingerprint sensor.

01:46:38   And now everybody's got a good fingerprint sensor.

01:46:40   Yeah, well, and there's Windows Hello.

01:46:42   So you can-- on a Windows laptop, they support it.

01:46:47   And that uses an infrared camera.

01:46:50   So yeah, maybe it's maybe they could do.

01:46:51   It's the sort of thing where, you know, it's easy for me to

01:46:55   say, because my name isn't on the face ID patent, but it's the

01:46:59   sort of thing that as a generally, you know, not someone

01:47:05   who's not generally a fan of software patents. It's the sort

01:47:09   of thing that I hope isn't hindered by patents, because

01:47:12   it's so clearly the right way to go. Yeah.

01:47:14   So do you want to hear my conspiracy theory? Yes, I love

01:47:17   conspiracy theories.

01:47:18   - The Pixel 3 has one camera on the back

01:47:22   and two on the front.

01:47:23   - Right.

01:47:24   - And the two on the front are there

01:47:26   because one of them is a wide angle thing.

01:47:28   And they also do actually use a little bit of it

01:47:30   for portrait mode stuff.

01:47:31   But the idea is mainly people love having

01:47:34   wide angle selfies and it's easy to poo poo that,

01:47:37   but like actually like handing it to a normal person

01:47:40   and then be like, look, you can get it this wide.

01:47:42   They love it.

01:47:44   My conspiracy theory is that Google

01:47:46   wanted to do the same thing with face unlock

01:47:49   that Apple's doing with Face ID, but be able to claim that it

01:47:51   was as secure as Face ID without having to use lasers,

01:47:54   because they are able to do with two cameras,

01:47:58   detect your face accurately in the same way

01:47:59   that they don't need two cameras to do portrait mode

01:48:01   on the back, if that makes sense.

01:48:03   They're so good at applying machine learning to what

01:48:05   the camera sees that they could have a secure face

01:48:07   unlock with the selfie cameras.

01:48:10   I'm sure this isn't true, but it's my crazy conspiracy

01:48:13   theory informed by absolutely no sources or hints from anywhere?

01:48:17   That makes it does make some sense. It's funny, I've, you

01:48:22   know, and like I said, I've been using the pixel three mostly as

01:48:25   a camera for at least a month. I'm just not a big selfie taker.

01:48:29   So I've tried, you know, and I do see it, I see how from and

01:48:36   you know, it it is optimized for arm's length, it is it is it is

01:48:42   very useful if you're the sort of person who takes a lot of pictures of themselves in it and wants to

01:48:47   see the background or takes a picture of yourself with friends and family right next to you. It

01:48:52   it it does exactly with it. Google says it does you know it is a good camera for getting more

01:48:58   people in from exactly the length of of holding the camera out at arm's length.

01:49:04   Well, it's a weird focal length at all sorts of other areas in the way that why super wide angle

01:49:11   fisheye. I mean, I wouldn't quite call it a fisheye lens, but it's close because it's so wide.

01:49:16   And there's all sorts of stuff that looks bad if you get it at the wrong distance, but it's,

01:49:21   you know, it's surprise, surprise optimized for arm's length. It is weird, though, that they have

01:49:26   two pictures on the to me, the lesser side, not the greater side. I mean, two cameras on the lesser

01:49:32   side. Well, I think that, I mean, it's weird to me as well, but I'm also not a millennial. Right?

01:49:40   I mean, it's easy to make jokes about millennials, but I do think that in a lot of ways,

01:49:44   the selfie camera is the most important camera on a lot of phones. And I say that with no judgment.

01:49:50   Like it's just people love it.

01:49:52   Right. You know, I've even budged. I went a long time. I used to be, my other pet peeve years ago,

01:50:00   nobody even talks about blogs anymore, period. But for a long time in the early years of

01:50:04   Daring Fireball, I went out of my way to always use the word web blog instead of blog. Because

01:50:09   for some reason I really, I thought, I still don't like the word. I think that it's,

01:50:13   I don't know, there's something about the word that I don't like.

01:50:16   But I went out of my way for a long time to not use the word selfie. I still do sometimes. I will

01:50:25   use, there's a lot of places in Daring Fireball where I will use the term self-portrait, where

01:50:31   Everybody else in the 20th, 21st century would use the word selfie.

01:50:36   I feel like if even Apple calls them selfies and every time Phil Schiller says the word selfie,

01:50:44   it always sticks out to me because he always seems to me like the sort of person who,

01:50:47   if he's using the word selfie, then I should be using it too. It's give it up. It's a word.

01:50:53   Language evolves and that it is what it is. But...

01:50:56   But I think I think everybody needs to have their one language thing that they refuse

01:51:00   to John. For me, it's beg the question when people say beg the question and then like

01:51:05   actually state a question what really when they misuse the phrase beg the question that's

01:51:09   that's the one that I get persnickety about.

01:51:11   I I'm big on people who say that they're nauseous when they mean that they're nauseated because

01:51:23   something that is nauseous is what makes you nauseated. Like a nauseous odor makes you

01:51:29   feel nauseated. And I'm correct on that, but in general, unless I try to be as much of

01:51:38   a descriptivist rather than prescriptivist, the language evolves and it's, you know, using

01:51:44   nauseous to mean nauseated is so common that it's actually accepted in some places. But

01:51:52   But it's one to me that every time somebody says it, I always think that's wrong.

01:51:56   Yeah.

01:51:57   To bite my tongue and not correct them or go on the rant that I just did right there.

01:52:02   All right, let me take a final break here and thank our third and final sponsor of this

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01:55:05   and conditions to apply. I saw the pillow. I think so. Yeah, they have pillows. Yeah,

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01:55:25   absolutely adore. I don't I like it. I you know, I'm not going to speak poorly of them as a

01:55:29   former sponsor of the show. My wife and son love I like the just the sort of regular pillow that

01:55:35   the Casper makes. It's just like a like a pillow pillow. Yeah.

01:55:38   And it's easy to wash. That's why I bought it because you

01:55:41   could take it apart and throw it in the machine. Yeah, it is. It

01:55:43   is, you know, and it's like brand new, like, my mind's at

01:55:47   least a year old. It's and it's been washed several times. And

01:55:49   it's, I'm a drooler when I sleep. So I don't know if that's

01:55:54   too much information. I need washability. Alright, pixel

01:55:59   3 camera. It is an excellent camera. But before I get to the camera, I have to say this. Here's

01:56:07   the other thing about the Pixel 3 that I just, as an iPhone user, I cannot believe. I can't

01:56:11   believe what a shitty screen it has. And I cannot believe the default setting for the

01:56:17   display. I cannot believe it. There's…

01:56:20   Which of the ones does it default to? Does it default to the super adaptive crazy camera?

01:56:25   So, so in you, you go to settings display and then you have to go to advance. So you

01:56:31   don't even know if you're just a typical user and you think, ah, advanced, I, I, you know,

01:56:35   I'm, that's, that's not for me. You would never even know this setting is there. You

01:56:38   go to advanced and then there's a, what do they call it here? Colors. They have three

01:56:43   options, natural, boosted and adaptive. And they have a photo of like a hummingbird and

01:56:48   some flowers to show you what these three mean, but there's no text describing what,

01:56:53   the difference is. The default is the last one adaptive. And I think it's crazy. I don't

01:57:00   know what the hell they're, I don't know what it's adapting to other than making everything

01:57:04   look bad. It is so super saturated. I have no idea why they don't call that one boosted.

01:57:11   Even the terms they use are wrong.

01:57:13   Yeah. Okay. So natural is supposed to be straight RGB or sRGB, right? Boosted is supposed to

01:57:21   be straight SRGB, but they boost it like 10%. And then adaptive is adaptive to the colors

01:57:29   on the screen where they make stuff super vivid, but they try to be intelligent about

01:57:34   not boosting skin tone so that they look Donald Trumpy.

01:57:38   It is they fail at that. Everything. Well, everything looks red.

01:57:41   Yeah, everything looks red. So the history here, and I in particular, I'm part of this

01:57:46   history is fascinating. So number one, the context to know, and by the way, none of this

01:57:52   is like an apologia. None of this is saying that these are the right decisions. I'm just

01:57:57   like the con—I'm trying to explain the decisions I think they've made. So number one is if

01:58:00   you look at any other Android phone, and especially a Samsung phone, it makes the even the adaptive

01:58:07   super vivid mode on the Pixel 3 look washed out and muted. It is the most insane colors

01:58:13   you've ever seen on a screen in your entire life. Then Samsung has always tuned its colors that way.

01:58:18   And so I think that there is a context for in the Android world where if they don't have the default

01:58:24   presentation of the screen be bonkers, then people will think it looks washed out in the store

01:58:28   relative to a Samsung phone in the same way that like all the wrong settings are on the TVs at

01:58:33   Best Buy. Right. Right. And it's like a blue state, red state America where it's like, you know,

01:58:38   there's parts of the country where it's totally, you know, very typical to have like 10 guns in

01:58:42   your house and other parts of the country where it's like, it's shocking if you own a gun,

01:58:47   you know, and it's like, wow, what a difference, you know, and it's like, we've sort of gotten

01:58:50   like, that's, it's not political. It's obviously aesthetic. But Apple adheres to this very, very,

01:58:58   very to me, absolutely pristine color space that is realistic. And yeah, and not really,

01:59:04   just almost with scientific, literally, maybe not even almost like with scientific rigor,

01:59:11   trying to be realistic. And yeah, Samsung and other Android makers have pushed the Android world to

01:59:17   this vivid nightmare escape. And that leads me to the second part of the context, which was last

01:59:23   year's Pixel 2 XL had such a terrible horrific screen that they are probably overcompensating

01:59:31   with the way that they handle reds in particular on the screen. So we actually pulled our review

01:59:36   for a while because we were worried about burn-in, brought it back, but the screen was like cast off

01:59:40   LG screens I guess, I don't know. But the reds looked brown, everything looked muddy

01:59:46   like you were looking at it through a sheet of parchment paper, and it was just, it was

01:59:51   a terrible screen. And so I think when they got better suppliers here for these two screens,

01:59:57   I think ironically the smaller one is LG and the bigger one is Samsung. I forget which

02:00:01   is which now. Anyway, I think they, when they tuned the adaptive colors, they turned it

02:00:09   up relative to what they had on the Pixel 2 to like show that there was a clear difference

02:00:13   in the screen. Because their defense of the original Pixel 2 screen was, hey, no, these

02:00:17   are actually color accurate. We scientifically tested the colors, but it just looks terrible.

02:00:23   And so well, it's funny because displays are displays are a funny thing to review. Because

02:00:29   you can't show you can't really show a display because you're whoever's watching your video

02:00:35   or looking at the photos on your review is looking at those on its on a display, right?

02:00:40   Yeah, you can't really show a display on a display. You know, I mean, you can and there

02:00:45   you can put one side by side and see some of the Oh, I see I see which way it's going.

02:00:49   But until you see it in your hand, you're like, you can't do it. And I remember last

02:00:52   year thinking, I don't know if I should buy the pixel to, you know, I already have the

02:00:57   pixel one, I didn't really use it a lot. Maybe I should just get one every other year. And

02:01:00   I went into a Verizon store. And I remember reading the reviews, and I picked one up and

02:01:04   I was like, it's like the Grandpa Simpson thing where he goes into the bordello. He

02:01:10   walks into the bordello and Bart is working the door and he takes off his hat and then

02:01:15   he just turns, sees it's Bart, just turns around and walks right out. I just picked

02:01:18   up the Pixel 2 and I thought, "Oh, I see." And I just put it down and I was just like,

02:01:24   "I'll wait till next year." That was a bad display, whatever the calibration was.

02:01:29   I just can't believe that this defaults to this adaptive thing and that it's not a first run setup

02:01:37   thing. And I totally get that like maybe Apple airs on the side of too many steps in the first

02:01:44   run, you know, and I know that it's it's a tricky balance because you don't want to make it feel

02:01:49   like you're taking a the SAT before you get to use your new device, you know, nobody likes setting up.

02:01:56   But you have to ask some questions. And if you're even thinking about making the default

02:02:00   so such a polarizing decision, I can't believe that they don't even bring it up as an option.

02:02:07   I really can't believe it. I thought and Matthew Panzorino of TechCrunch, he got a review unit of

02:02:14   the Pixel 3 around the same time. And so we both had them when we were in New York recently for the

02:02:21   I think it was when we picked up like I said, like when we picked up the 10 hours.

02:02:24   And we're both very at the time we're very very new to the pixel three. No, it wasn't for the 10-hour thing

02:02:31   It was for the iPad event because I remember I saw you I was when we saw you guys in the green room then

02:02:37   Yeah

02:02:37   Yeah

02:02:37   So

02:02:38   Panzerino and I are both new to the pixel three and we're taking pictures and we're both like what the hell are all these people

02:02:43   Saying that this is a great camera. This is the worst camera I've ever seen that doesn't get any of the colors, right and

02:02:48   And I've and we're both we're like this is garbage and then I thought to myself wait

02:02:54   Maybe it's the display and I like sent one to myself and I looked at it on my iPhone and I was like, oh

02:02:59   This is a terrific camera

02:03:01   This the colors are completely

02:03:03   Right. Yeah, and we were like, oh my god, and then we started digging around and you know

02:03:08   It's not like the setting is hidden. It is in settings display advanced colors

02:03:12   I mean, it's you know, once you the advanced thing I think is a little unnecessary

02:03:16   And again, the terms aren't good. But then once you switch it to natural, it's better.

02:03:20   Yeah, but the colors still aren't right. And I've shown this to a couple people like

02:03:25   a lot of indoor areas, I'll hold up an iPhone hold up the pixel three indoors. And I'm you know,

02:03:32   so I'm looking at the same scene on an iPhone through the camera on the pixel three through

02:03:36   the camera and with my eyes, looking at the actual scene. And the colors on the iPhone look exactly

02:03:42   like what I see with my eyes and the colors on the Pixel 3 don't. But then I take the

02:03:46   picture, send it to my iPhone or look at it on a Mac and they look, the colors are perfect.

02:03:51   - Yep.

02:03:52   (laughing)

02:03:53   - I mean, there's nothing else to say.

02:03:57   - Well, that's, and so part of--

02:03:58   - Samsung and Apple are the only companies that make really good displays.

02:04:00   - So part of my gripe about the argument that the Pixel 3 is the best camera phone in the

02:04:06   world is I don't know how it can be the best camera phone in the world when it doesn't

02:04:09   have a good viewfinder because the colors aren't right. Like you kind of have to trust what you see,

02:04:16   you have to just trust that it's going to get the camera right, because it's not going to look right

02:04:19   when you look at the screen. Right? Yeah, I mean, that's fair. But I mean, I guess, for me, it's,

02:04:26   you know, the reason for me to take a photo is to send it to somebody and nobody owns a pixel

02:04:31   three. So they're gonna have a better display. It is it was it was shocking. And it is it shows

02:04:38   how spoiled I am and maybe how insular I am to the Apple world where I'm just so used to perfectly

02:04:45   calibrated displays that I never have to worry about that it didn't occur to me for days that it

02:04:50   was the display and not the camera. I really thought that guys like you, the rest of the guys

02:04:55   at the verge like Vlad, I thought you guys were like pulling the biggest punk in the history of

02:04:59   the world. I'm like, I wasted it. I spent like 700 bucks on this phone because the bird said it was

02:05:05   was a great camera this is garbage everything's red everything looks like

02:05:10   you're in you know you know like again like a bordello everything things all

02:05:15   like red now I I switch mine what mode am I on right now I think I'm on natural

02:05:21   but I may have gone to boosted just for the I boosted for a couple days good I

02:05:25   don't like natural either adaptive though makes me want to throw the phone

02:05:29   in the garbage I cannot believe that they don't even ask about it very

02:05:32   range. But the camera is good. I do see why people who are fans of the Pixel 3 don't really talk

02:05:41   about video. Video is not bad, but it's not good. It's not great. And it's definitely a place where

02:05:54   You can do a lot with software, but the hardware--

02:05:59   if your hardware-- what am I trying to say?

02:06:01   Video will betray your hardware every time.

02:06:04   And Apple has an incredibly powerful chip,

02:06:07   an incredibly powerful image sensor, an image processor.

02:06:12   And that means that you're able to do good video.

02:06:15   You can't do machine learning on video files.

02:06:17   They're too big, and it would take too long.

02:06:19   Yeah, and one of the ways that it's not a machine learning

02:06:22   thing. I think it's an image signal processing performance thing is video is always a crop of the

02:06:30   sensor. Like you don't get the full you know, when you switch if you ever know, you know,

02:06:34   just in case if you're not a big fan, just open up your iPhone or whatever phone you have. Look at

02:06:40   the still photos at one x magnification switch to video and it zooms in a little is what it looks

02:06:46   like, because it's a crop, the pixel crops a lot more. So yes,

02:06:51   it is. It's a, it is the widest you can get in video on the

02:06:55   pixel is not very wide. It's very unnatural to me as somebody

02:06:59   who's so used to the iPhone for video.

02:07:01   Yeah, and I mean, I don't know how Google's gonna solve this

02:07:07   problem. Because at the end of the day, they don't have an A

02:07:10   series processor, they're waiting on Qualcomm. And for as

02:07:13   much shit as we give Intel for not knowing what it's doing.

02:07:17   Qualcomm is not that much better what you get outside of its bread

02:07:20   and butter use cases of modems and sort of standard processing

02:07:25   for Android phones.

02:07:27   When you get into smartwatch processors or other sorts

02:07:32   of things, the computation you need to do to shoot good video,

02:07:35   they just don't have it.

02:07:36   And I don't know how Google gets around that, sort of making

02:07:38   its own silicon.

02:07:39   And it's doing that a little bit.

02:07:40   They have their own image processing chip.

02:07:42   But I think they're gonna have to do a lot more if they want to catch up

02:07:45   For stills it is absolutely it is. I think it's just a terrific camera

02:07:50   Maybe I don't I don't know if it's for certain better than the iPhone. I think

02:07:54   It's close but it's certainly in the ballpark and in certain ways. It's you know, it's it's better

02:08:01   The night sight thing is amazing. It really is

02:08:03   Yeah, so I prefer the pixel photos just because they they tend to be there

02:08:11   This is again. It's all it all comes out to aesthetics at this point or mostly

02:08:14   I do think that they tend to look a little bit more dramatic. They're a little bit more contrasty. Yeah

02:08:19   But what's interesting is the pixel 3 actually became a little bit less blue

02:08:25   A little more yellow a little bit less dramatic and a tiny little bit less contrasty compared to the pixel 2

02:08:31   So Google actually moves the aesthetics of its images and its image processing a little bit closer to what the iPhone does

02:08:38   Yeah, which is really fascinating. Yeah, I saw it

02:08:41   But you know, and I told you, we did the family Christmas tree thing today. And I took I had

02:08:46   both phones with me and I have some photos and I was looking at them just before we started

02:08:49   recording and there was a couple I took of my son and you know, he's surrounded by green

02:08:54   Christmas trees. And I had to say that I like the pixel one better because it was more contrasty

02:09:00   and the green was very like a rich, vibrant green of these trees. Whereas the phone the

02:09:06   The iPhone seemed, I wouldn't say washed out,

02:09:09   but it looked, the greens look washed out

02:09:12   compared to the Pixel side by side.

02:09:13   I think it was like, they're both so good,

02:09:16   but it's clear that their engineering teams

02:09:18   have made different priorities, had different priorities,

02:09:22   and are slightly different decisions in that,

02:09:26   the pipeline between image sensor

02:09:27   and saving the actual JPEG.

02:09:29   And you could see that.

02:09:31   And then certain, so sometimes one looks better

02:09:33   than the other.

02:09:35   It is for sure. I think Apple I think Apple cares more about getting

02:09:39   The people right and the skin tone especially on people, right?

02:09:43   and I think Google's looking at the whole scene a little bit more and

02:09:47   That's gonna lead to like one's gonna win some situations one's gonna win in other situations. Yeah cases

02:09:54   It hasn't kicked in for me much in real life

02:09:57   I don't know why but and I've taken a ton of photos with that. I forget how many I took at least 600

02:10:03   maybe more

02:10:05   But when it

02:10:08   Decide asks you if you'd like to take a different frame because the subject was looking away

02:10:12   It is so it's so brilliant and it yeah

02:10:15   And the other thing is in over a month with hundreds of pictures taken it has never once

02:10:20   Asked me that it almost never does it only comes up a couple times

02:10:23   It has never asked me that when it wasn't an improvement

02:10:27   Really? Yeah. Oh, that's yeah. I've had a couple that were a little bit a little bit off

02:10:32   But again, that's like I don't know how many like thousand photos I've taken the worst

02:10:35   I can say was there was one where they were it was hard to say it was 50/50

02:10:39   Yeah, and it was sort of like they were right that neither was great

02:10:43   Yeah, there was it's and it's sort of spooky that that the machine learning is so good at identifying a

02:10:50   Hmm your could the subject of this is clearly a human being and this human being doesn't really look good. Yeah, what's

02:10:56   yeah, what's impressive about the experience of using the camera the pixel 3 is

02:11:01   is what they did, they fixed their algorithms,

02:11:04   they improved their portrait mode a little bit.

02:11:06   It's not quite as good as the iPhone with the two lenses,

02:11:08   but it's pretty good.

02:11:10   And then they just ladled on a bunch of features.

02:11:12   And having reviewed phones for 12 years or whatever it is now,

02:11:18   anytime a company says, here's our camera

02:11:20   and here's the 15 new things we added to it,

02:11:22   you know you're in for a disaster,

02:11:24   because they're all going to feel like they're tacked on

02:11:26   and they're going to feel like gimmicks

02:11:28   and they're not going to work very well.

02:11:30   And somehow they managed to avoid that for the most part on this camera, the stuff that they do

02:11:37   feels pretty well integrated. And when you use it, it's, you know, it seems like it's worth using.

02:11:43   It's a very well done app. It's not just that the features are there and the machine learning

02:11:49   and the AI and what you know, the this ignorant image chip that they have, whatever. It's not just

02:11:54   the engineering. It's to me, it's by far and away, my favorite app on the device. It's a

02:12:00   really nice app and you know in some ways you know there's there's a it's not that different

02:12:06   from using the iphone camera app i mean you know like i don't know they put like the button to

02:12:11   switch from the front to the back on the left instead of the right and well you know that's

02:12:15   just a choice but uh i don't know it just it it doesn't get in your way and like you said it sounds

02:12:21   like ah there's a bunch of features how much how annoying are they going to be uh and not they're

02:12:25   not annoying. There's an interesting philosophical difference between Google and Apple that I

02:12:32   thought about as I've used this because I've I didn't get I didn't I'm not enough of an

02:12:38   Android nerd. I didn't want to screw the phone up. So I didn't get the night sight thing when it was

02:12:44   like unofficial. Yeah, I didn't do that. I just waited to get the over the air thing.

02:12:49   And I got it and I you know, it's obviously it you know, because it's the only phone in the world

02:12:54   that has this feature. It's, it's, you know, super exciting. And it, you know, at times is,

02:13:00   it's often amazing. And at times, it gives you a picture that you just simply couldn't get

02:13:07   otherwise. Yeah. That's what a picture worth keeping. There are other times where it takes

02:13:13   pictures. And I, you know, even in the example pictures that people have posted, where it's like,

02:13:18   that's technically amazing, but it, I don't like it, because it looks like daytime. It's so it's

02:13:23   Yeah, it gets such a good exposure that it doesn't look it doesn't look true to the scene like, you know

02:13:28   This is supposed to look like a dark street at night and it looks like daytime. Yeah

02:13:32   Well, that's why I'm really glad they made it a separate mode if they had tried to build that into like something that happens

02:13:38   Automatically in the main camera. I would have flipped a lid because I want I want consistency and like I want to get know what?

02:13:46   I'm gonna get when I click the camera shutter, but with night sight you kind of don't know

02:13:50   It's always something you use like well, this is a crazy

02:13:53   Situation to try and take a photo. Let me give this a shot. Yeah instead of just replace the main camera function

02:13:58   Yeah, and they have a nice UI for it too because you're just you open the camera app

02:14:02   You're just framing a photo and if it's low-light

02:14:05   It says try night sight and there's you know

02:14:08   If you don't want to you can just take your picture as usual take your chances holding your hand still and then if you want

02:14:14   To go night sight it's you know, just tap that button that pops up only when the phone thinks it might be useful

02:14:21   Yep, and so you're not surprised, you know, you're in night sight and therefore, you know, you have to take three or four seconds

02:14:29   I think you know, maybe two three seconds, whatever it is to hold the camera while it's

02:14:34   Yeah, while it's making the exposure and it's interesting

02:14:38   So the thought that I had at first was well, this is interesting and it's obviously useful

02:14:42   And so, you know, it'll probably spread to other phones including the iPhone in some way whether it's next year or two years whenever

02:14:50   But now now that I'm using it and thinking about the way the iPhone works and looking at the difference between the portrait modes on

02:14:56   The two phones it occurs to me that maybe not maybe the iPhone wouldn't ever do this because there's clearly a philosophical difference between Apple and

02:15:04   Google's camera teams, which is that Apple

02:15:08   philosophically only seemingly

02:15:11   I mean

02:15:11   Maybe they could always change their mind in the future but so far they only do things that they can do live in the viewfinder

02:15:18   right and

02:15:19   Google will do things that happen afterwards. So in Google's portrait mode, portrait mode

02:15:25   is the perfect example. When you're doing portrait mode on the iPhone, you see the portrait

02:15:31   phone live in the viewfinder in real time as you move the camera around. And then the

02:15:36   image you take is exactly what you saw when you hit the shutter button. Whereas on the

02:15:40   Google phone, when you're in portrait mode, it doesn't look any different than the regular

02:15:44   mode. And then you take the picture. And it applies the portrait mode in the next maybe

02:15:50   second or two. Yeah, you can even see it sometimes. Yeah, like in night mode. If you like,

02:15:55   you hop into the picture right away. You like see the garbage and the sun that resolves. Right?

02:15:59   It's exactly right. Night sites. Perfect like that. Because you take it and of course, I'm super

02:16:04   excited to be taking night sight pictures. So I'm like, Oh, here's a good time. Oh, I'll take it and

02:16:09   it's like up. This isn't that great. And then say, Oh, no, wait. Oh, that's interesting. You know,

02:16:14   but it takes that much time. Yeah. And night sight now so portrait mode obviously can happen

02:16:20   in real time because it Apple does it in real time. Right. But night sight by definition can't

02:16:26   happen in real time. You can't right. You can't in real time preview what three seconds worth of

02:16:31   exposures algorithmically stitched together into a cohesive sharp still image will look like by

02:16:38   definition because you need the three seconds. And so I wonder if Apple will do it. I mean,

02:16:44   maybe they, if it becomes popular enough and other phones pick it up, they might have to,

02:16:49   quote unquote. Yeah, I hadn't thought of the idea that Apple philosophically doesn't want to do

02:16:54   anything that you can't preview live in the viewfinder. And I'm trying to think of like,

02:16:59   I mean, I guess you could argue that like Panorama doesn't, but even that it's like,

02:17:03   I don't know, if you think that's really like a philosophical thing that they want to believe in.

02:17:07   No, I mean, I've talked to people who are familiar with the situation and it is okay.

02:17:13   It's why the 10 R that you know, the 10 R has portrait mode and 10 R does everything in real

02:17:23   time to even with a single camera, but the 10 R in portrait mode doesn't have the stage lighting

02:17:27   effects, which I don't really find useful. I've never once I almost never even apply them, frankly.

02:17:34   Yeah, so you don't want to have tried to apply them. They don't look like the ones Apple has that look good

02:17:39   They look like somebody's head got cut off or something. Yeah

02:17:41   Yeah, but that 10-hour doesn't even have them because it can't do them in real time

02:17:45   Huh with the just with the one, you know, obviously it has the same chips. So it's not the chips

02:17:51   It's the fact that it doesn't have two cameras, right? So it is that's yeah

02:17:55   and every feature that they have

02:17:59   The in like the latest and greatest that doesn't work on older iPhones

02:18:04   It's not marketing spite like oh we're gonna we want you to pay to get the new phone to get it

02:18:10   It's because they can't do it in real time without blank

02:18:12   Right. So some of the new stuff can't be done in real time just because the new

02:18:16   The neural engine thing on the a12 is so much faster than it was before

02:18:22   Like every single one of those things that that seems like it could be marketing spite as I call it is

02:18:29   literally, I mean, you can say that the that the refusal to not

02:18:33   do anything that can't be shown in real time is marketing spite,

02:18:37   but that's their attitude.

02:18:38   Right. I mean, that makes sense. Again, like the most important

02:18:42   thing with the cameras predictability, right? You're

02:18:44   going to take a picture and it's going to do what you think it's

02:18:46   going to do.

02:18:46   Well, but on the other hand, like I started my life in as an

02:18:50   amateur photographer shooting on film and film. Film was entirely,

02:18:53   you know, find out what you got later. Right. So I'm like, I

02:18:58   don't even it to me, it's a six of one half a dozen of the

02:19:01   other, it's two different approaches. I don't say one is

02:19:03   better than the other. I mean, there's advantages to both. But

02:19:06   I'm not like put off by Google's render it later approach,

02:19:10   because maybe it's just the old film shooter in me where looking

02:19:14   through the viewfinder of a 35 millimeter camera, there was no

02:19:17   Boca, you know, everything was in focus, I could focus at any

02:19:22   distance I wanted to. You know, it's it. And and you'd find out, you know, what kind of

02:19:30   depth of field you really had when you got your film developed. So right, you know, having

02:19:34   to wait two seconds as opposed to waiting three days. Yeah, whatever. Yeah. It still

02:19:40   feels like magic to me, but it couldn't happen in night sight. Otherwise. Yeah.

02:19:46   I do wonder what other photographic problems

02:19:53   Google thinks machine learning can tackle.

02:19:54   So I know that the next one for them

02:19:56   is going to be white balance.

02:19:58   They actually have a different white balance algorithm

02:20:00   in the standard camera than they do in Night Sight.

02:20:05   So the way Night Sight works, it takes up to 15 frames.

02:20:11   They're not long exposures, but they can be longer.

02:20:14   And then it stitches them together,

02:20:16   And then it also, if you have handshake,

02:20:19   it's able to use machine learning to make sure everything

02:20:21   lines up and stays sharp.

02:20:22   And so what you get is you get a picture that often has less

02:20:25   noise than you otherwise have because it's

02:20:27   able to average over the different shots you took.

02:20:29   And it also makes it look unreal because it's brighter

02:20:32   than it otherwise would be.

02:20:34   Anyway, when you do that and you make a photo that is--

02:20:37   you took it in the dark, but it looks like it's daytime,

02:20:40   it turns out that white balance goes bonkers.

02:20:43   It goes crazy.

02:20:43   Everything looks yellow or strange.

02:20:45   And so they did a standard machine learning thing,

02:20:48   which is they're like, well, these all look wrong.

02:20:50   So they had everybody fix them to make the white balance

02:20:52   right.

02:20:53   And they did that with some sample of photos.

02:20:56   And then they just told the camera, all right,

02:21:00   make the white balance look like that.

02:21:01   So they didn't manually tune anything.

02:21:03   They're just like, these all look right.

02:21:04   Those will look wrong.

02:21:05   Make it look more like that.

02:21:06   And that's the white balance that

02:21:08   gets applied to Night Sight.

02:21:09   And I'm sure they're going to try and bring

02:21:12   that to the main camera.

02:21:15   But I got to think there's other stuff that they think can be machine learned or whatever.

02:21:19   And so then at some point, will that philosophical difference of what is a "true picture" of

02:21:27   a thing going to be and what counts and what doesn't might be a bigger rift between Apple

02:21:34   and Google if Apple falls on putting that line at a different spot?

02:21:39   because at the end of the day there's no such thing as like a true image right and i think

02:21:43   apple's you know excitement over the um the fake bokeh in portrait mode shows that they're not

02:21:51   adamant about that either because it's right you know you know there are you know purists if you

02:21:58   will, who are offended by the idea of fake bokeh. And, you know, I'm, you know, I was always a fan,

02:22:09   I liked the early years of Instagram, when everybody was using the, the filters. Yeah,

02:22:14   me too. I thought that was great. And, you know, I think it was this thing of the times, you know,

02:22:19   and it wasn't going to last forever. But it was a fun, it was a very effective way, in my opinion,

02:22:25   to patch over the fact that the camera phones of the time were still kind of camera phony and not

02:22:32   real camera camera-y. You know, that they were still kind of, you know, we're getting to the

02:22:38   point where a camera phone was actually just a good camera in any way, period. Applying those

02:22:43   filters that made them look like snapshots from 1977 was a fun way to patch over that.

02:22:49   So I'm cool with that and I'm cool with portrait mode and sometimes I get portrait mode shots. I

02:22:55   I like them and they especially look good on the phone itself when they're small.

02:23:02   And then there's a lot of times I'll take a portrait mode photo and then I look at it

02:23:06   on my iMac and I'm like, "Oh, that's actually not good at all.

02:23:12   That is, ooh."

02:23:13   And it looks totally fake and gross.

02:23:16   But most people look at their pictures on their phone.

02:23:19   Yeah, and they'll scroll by it on Instagram and they'll look at it for long enough to

02:23:23   double tap it to give you a like and they move on to the next thing. No one's actually,

02:23:27   you know, zooming in to see if the hair got cropped perfectly correctly or not. Right.

02:23:30   Right. So I mean, you know, ideally, you want it to look good as big as it can get. And

02:23:34   you know, an Apple famously for the last three or four years now has spent a gazillion dollars

02:23:38   on the shot with iPhone marketing campaign, putting iPhone photographs on the biggest

02:23:43   billboards you know, they can buy. So you know, Apple certainly on board with making

02:23:48   printing iPhone photos very large. But I think it's okay to add features that work best when

02:23:55   looked on the iPhone itself. And portrait mode is one of those things.

02:23:58   Yeah, for sure. Yeah, I wonder what else AI can do. I feel like I'm not I'm not imaginative

02:24:06   enough like I feel like they're going to continue to surprise us.

02:24:09   Yeah, well, it is literally just imagination, right? The method for this white balance thing

02:24:16   is just take a data set, fix it, and say, do that thing.

02:24:20   And in my head, when I think about machine learning

02:24:23   and camera stuff, I always think in terms of,

02:24:24   I don't know, it's like a Moore's law,

02:24:26   like more processing power, better sensors, faster chips,

02:24:31   blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.

02:24:33   But this was just them saying, oh, wait,

02:24:35   we have this methodology that works for recognizing dogs

02:24:39   on the internet.

02:24:40   Well, that same idea could work to fix white balance.

02:24:42   So it's literally, can you take that same method

02:24:45   and apply it to some other thing.

02:24:47   If you can build a data set, you can tell a computer

02:24:49   to try and match it.

02:24:50   Yeah, and I think the other thing that's exciting

02:24:55   is that the actual Moore's law, Moore's law with CPUs

02:25:00   has been over for a while.

02:25:02   Our CPUs just aren't getting faster.

02:25:04   And so the things that could be improved by radically faster

02:25:07   CPUs we're not getting.

02:25:09   But the machine learning stuff is

02:25:11   in a early years of the '80s CPU phase,

02:25:15   where the A12 really is ridiculously faster than the A11 at the neural engine stuff.

02:25:23   And Google's got their chip, and the Pixel 3 one is way faster. The one year, just wait a year,

02:25:30   this stuff gets so much faster. And when you have those cycles and you can throw that many

02:25:35   iterations of the machine learning thing at an image, you can really, really do amazing things.

02:25:44   I feel like the portrait mode stuff is going to get so good so fast that this anybody who's skeptical about it still is

02:25:50   Eventually is going to have to give in

02:25:53   Yeah, oh for sure

02:25:55   I mean I have to imagine every time a phone ships and people that are working on this stuff

02:26:00   See what we all say about the portrait mode

02:26:03   Are just gritting their teeth because they know they've got something ten times better sitting in the lab. You know, I

02:26:09   I think so, too. And I but I also wonder then too about like the people who are working on those things

02:26:15   Like how do they stand leaving at the end of the day and then using the you know?

02:26:19   the pixel 3 or the iPhone X s and

02:26:22   They're stuck with this crummy camera when they when they know that they've got they've got one in the lab

02:26:28   That is just so much better. Yeah

02:26:31   Anything else what else did you do anything else you want to talk about?

02:26:34   man, I don't know

02:26:37   I'm just sort of glad hardware seasons over. Yeah, I wish that my last review hadn't been on the pixel slate and all the palm phone

02:26:44   But that's that's way it goes. I guess Peter's out

02:26:47   it's it's been a unusually busy review season for me personally because I I did the phone I did the iPad and the

02:26:56   Mac Mac

02:26:58   MacBook Air. Yeah, I did not do the Mac mini

02:27:02   Because I it's like I'm glad Apple is doing the Mac mini, but it's like probably the least likely Mac that I would buy

02:27:09   Yeah, it's it's such a it's so interesting because a lot of people still still think of it as like that entry-level consumer Mac

02:27:16   And it's super not that thing anymore. No, it's absolutely not and that's why

02:27:20   You know, it's funny that they're still calling it the Mac mini and we can you know

02:27:24   There's the whole thing about why they still calling the MacBook Air the air when it's thicker and heavier than the regular MacBook

02:27:29   It's like yeah those it's just names that have stuck

02:27:32   You know

02:27:33   Like the air is the one that looks like that and there's 13 inches and the Mac Mini is the one that's a square

02:27:39   That's this big even though it's actually not that many compared to a lot of these NUC computers and it's downright

02:27:46   gigantic compared to the little computers you can just put on a thumb drive

02:27:50   But it's actually a nice size for what they're doing now, which is putting like pro components into it. Yeah

02:27:57   Well, anyway, it was good to have you on the show. I really enjoyed the last and you know true to form

02:28:03   It was it was only like an hour or so

02:28:05   I want to find more to talk about so I don't have to go back to

02:28:10   putting lights on the Christmas tree, but I

02:28:13   Feel like I've taken up enough of your time. So my thanks to you everybody can follow you

02:28:18   you are back on BAC k l o n on Twitter and

02:28:24   and can read your fine work at The Verge. Someday, next time you're on, what we should

02:28:31   talk about is the real palm.

02:28:34   Oh yeah, happy to do that for days.

02:28:38   Because if people don't know this, if people don't remember, you were—were you the

02:28:45   editor-in-chief? What was your title?

02:28:47   Yeah, so I was the editor-in-chief, and I also founded it, and at the time it was called

02:28:52   pre-Central, now it's called. Well, now it's gone, but it was webOS Nation for a minute.

02:28:57   But yeah, so we had this model where it was called, now it's called WebO nations, but it was

02:29:03   smartphone experts. So I founded Windows Central and iMore, although at the time it was called

02:29:08   Phone Different because we didn't know what we were doing. Android Central, a few others. Anyway,

02:29:16   But it all grew out of the original website, which was called Visor Central.

02:29:22   And so I was very involved in the Palm community for a long time.

02:29:26   Met my wife because of Palm.

02:29:28   A whole long thing.

02:29:32   It would be great for a huge topic on the show, but it is very funny because I was always

02:29:37   a fan.

02:29:38   I never had one, but I was a huge fan of the UI.

02:29:42   It was the thing to love about the phone was that it had this great, the whole system,

02:29:47   and I mean that in the truest sense of the word, was cohesive and thoughtful.

02:29:53   And 11 years later, all the other phones have finally caught up to the UI.

02:29:58   Yeah, everybody took a minute.

02:30:01   That's the one thing, you know, like everybody has come to this user interface that is kind

02:30:05   of basically the palm card interface where you swipe up from the bottom and you go side

02:30:13   to side to switch between apps.

02:30:15   Yep.

02:30:16   And just this year, Apple and Google got around to implementing the idea that you should be

02:30:24   able to use the thing that you search to also do actions.

02:30:28   So with Siri shortcuts and whatever they're called on Google, I guess it was called actions.

02:30:34   I'm still waiting for somebody to to put the notifications at the bottom, which I thought

02:30:40   was I thought that was so perfect.

02:30:44   I think it's perfect until you have a software keyboard and then it's probably a disaster.

02:30:47   That's probably that is probably why that nobody's done that. I guess I don't know.

02:30:53   But aesthetically, it was it was superior and it felt like faster. Yeah, for sure. I

02:30:58   you know what, I will say this as a final note, it is easier to switch between iPhone

02:31:03   and Android, or at least the pixel version of Android than it ever has been in the past,

02:31:08   just because so many of the interactions are similar now. And I don't I don't think it's

02:31:14   a case of copying, I think it is sort of water seeking its own level and the best ideas.

02:31:21   You know, everybody kind of arrives at these good ideas, you know, I mean, without question,

02:31:26   we talked about notifications that iOS was clearly behind, at least on the features of

02:31:31   notification display system for a long time. And it's gotten a lot more like Android, where they're

02:31:36   grouped together by app, and you can deal with them as a group if you want or expand them,

02:31:41   et cetera, et cetera. The card-based UI switching and stuff like that,

02:31:45   it's definitely easier than it has been in the past.

02:31:48   Dr. Tim Wolfe Yeah, that's very generous of you. I do think

02:31:52   that the multitasking system and the core card switching system on the Pixel feel like they're

02:31:59   They're a little bit more of a rip of the iPhone

02:32:01   and it's certainly way less elegant.

02:32:02   It's way more fun to switch between stuff on an iPhone

02:32:05   than it is on a Pixel.

02:32:06   - I was trying to be generous.

02:32:07   (laughing)

02:32:10   The one thing that drives me nuts

02:32:12   is that you still have to tap the home button.

02:32:15   You can't, it's like they didn't copy enough.

02:32:18   - Do a quick swipe up, yeah.

02:32:19   Yeah, the companies that are more willing

02:32:22   to just blatantly steal from Apple,

02:32:24   like OnePlus has a different multitasking,

02:32:26   like UI system for the buttons at the bottom,

02:32:29   just better. It's just like swiping up is way more natural. Yeah. Yeah. Anyway, back on Twitter,

02:32:35   The Verge, where it says where your fine work can be read and viewed. And I thank you for your time.

02:32:42   Have a good holiday season. You too, man. Have fun with those Christmas lights. This has been a blast.

02:32:46   God help me.