245: Senior-Citizen Advantage


00:00:00   I am not looking forward to Friday.

00:00:02   Not at all.

00:00:03   Hey, so you want to do some follow up?

00:00:07   Yeah, I think we only have one item here and it's a tiny little throwaway thing.

00:00:11   I don't know.

00:00:12   Oh, here we go.

00:00:13   Buckle up.

00:00:14   How many times have we said this and then it's like 40 minutes?

00:00:15   It'll be fine.

00:00:16   I'm trying to think why we didn't have a lot of follow up.

00:00:19   Last time we talked all about like Mac pros and stuff, maybe people were like, okay, fine.

00:00:24   I don't know.

00:00:26   The Mac mini thing that is in the topic section is a natural follow-on from last thing.

00:00:33   Not to be confused with follow-up from last week's topic.

00:00:35   Or out.

00:00:36   Yes.

00:00:37   Who invented follow-on?

00:00:38   I don't know.

00:00:39   Is it even a thing?

00:00:40   I think I was just using the actual term, the actual phrase as in something that naturally

00:00:45   comes after another thing.

00:00:46   I mean, you probably thought the same thing when you were first using follow-up, and then

00:00:50   it turns out you invented that.

00:00:51   No, because there was a format associated with that.

00:00:54   There was a format.

00:00:55   the format for follow-on? In the next show you do a topic that naturally follows the

00:01:03   topic on the previous show? I don't know. I think it's whatever you say it is.

00:01:07   Well, we'll see. If I do it for like two years regularly with a strict format in every

00:01:12   single episode, then we'll see what we got. So let me just state for the record that we

00:01:17   immediately ended up on a tangent on this thing that will be very quick.

00:01:22   - It's fine.

00:01:23   - Carry on, Joe. - I figured why there wasn't

00:01:26   a lot of follow up.

00:01:27   So the only item I have is more chair follow up.

00:01:30   - Of course.

00:01:31   - I can't, I forget.

00:01:32   - I love this.

00:01:34   - Last week I think I was sitting on the gesture, right?

00:01:37   - I think you had just started sitting on the gesture

00:01:38   like that day or sometime recently.

00:01:41   - Yeah, so I used it for a few days or whatever,

00:01:43   but I've swapped it back now for the Embody.

00:01:47   Now we're like, I took the old chairs out of the room,

00:01:48   so now we're in the actual trial period

00:01:51   I'm gonna try one chair and my wife will try the other and then we'll switch back and forth and see how we go

00:01:55   I kind of know what I think of both of the chairs so far

00:01:59   and

00:02:02   I wish there was one that was just such a clear winner, but the big lumpy thing underneath the embody annoys me

00:02:09   But I think I like the embody like I think it fits my body you better than the gesture

00:02:15   So anyway, the only bit of follow-up I have is last week

00:02:19   I was sitting on the gesture, but I was wondering how I was going to figure out how to take

00:02:23   off the arms.

00:02:24   And I'm happy to report that I did successfully remove the arms without too much fuss.

00:02:28   It was just a tiny little bit tricky.

00:02:31   It wasn't actually tricky.

00:02:33   It's straightforward unless you are...

00:02:37   If you don't have a lot of experience disassembling things, it's...

00:02:42   This is how you get experience to some of the things.

00:02:44   You do it the wrong way when you're a kid a lot.

00:02:46   Maybe adults don't do this.

00:02:47   frequently as a child if I wanted to take something apart and I took a lot of things apart

00:02:50   you would look at it and be like I want that thing to come off and

00:02:54   You'd look around for a couple seconds and see if there's any obvious screw heads poking out somewhere or something like, you know

00:03:00   What do I need to unscrew or?

00:03:02   Untwist or whatever to make this come out and if you don't see anything you're then you're like well

00:03:06   I've got a lot of tools and I'm pretty clever

00:03:09   I have a posable thumbs and I'm a clever little using monkey I can get that off like it's coming off, right?

00:03:15   You just you you realize that you can do it

00:03:18   You're like I have I have leverage and and friction and all the whole sorts of things that will get this thing off

00:03:24   But you end up destroying the thing when you're taking it off

00:03:27   And so the steel case gesture chair is one of those devices where any

00:03:31   Tool using monkey and look at the thing and say I can get those arms off

00:03:36   Probably like I kind of have an idea like I see some some squishy plastic bits

00:03:40   It seemed like they have seams and even though I don't see any

00:03:43   Screws that I can unscrew to get it undone

00:03:45   I see a lot of things that are soft enough that I can pry them off and surely underneath those things if I pry them

00:03:51   Off will be the screws that I seek and I'll be able to remove these arms

00:03:55   But me having some experience to sell me things knows how this goes

00:03:59   Yeah, you probably will eventually do it that way

00:04:01   But there's also a very good chance that you will pry off all these soft parts and damage them and underneath them will just be

00:04:07   Scary unyielding metal that doesn't help you at all

00:04:10   So take two seconds to think about it, and I did take two seconds to think about it

00:04:14   I didn't pry the thing open in destroy because you know it's expensive chair

00:04:17   And I want to you know be nice to it anyway like I said this is so it comes with the experience to take things apart

00:04:21   so I

00:04:24   found

00:04:25   You could feel the underside of some very large screws that were probably holding the arms on but there's no way you could get at

00:04:32   the top of them

00:04:33   because there was no like there was you couldn't see the top of them and

00:04:37   And I'm like, look, well, this chair went together.

00:04:39   Someone assembled this chair,

00:04:40   and it's not like so many Apple things,

00:04:42   one-way assembly with tabs that don't untab

00:04:47   or things that iFixit has to remove with heat

00:04:50   because they're glued.

00:04:51   - First put this beanbag in the microwave.

00:04:54   - Right, exactly.

00:04:55   Yeah, or even just things, a lot of things snap together,

00:04:58   like a plastic snap together model

00:04:59   where there's a slot in the tab

00:05:01   and they really only go in one direction

00:05:02   and you have no way to push that tab back out

00:05:05   without breaking it.

00:05:06   But I figured a chair is not like that.

00:05:08   So the trick of it, in case you're wondering,

00:05:10   is the seat of the steel case chair

00:05:13   slides forward and back on like a little,

00:05:15   like it's like rack and pinion steering.

00:05:16   There's like a little rack thing

00:05:18   and then a little gear that turns, right?

00:05:20   And I could see that to get to the top of the screw heads

00:05:23   that I wanted to get at,

00:05:24   they would probably be underneath the back of the seat.

00:05:26   So I moved the seat forward,

00:05:27   but I couldn't remove the sort of plastic shroud.

00:05:29   It's not like a car,

00:05:30   plastic shroud that was probably covering

00:05:32   what I imagined to be the tops of those screws.

00:05:34   And I'm like, oh, if the seat goes forward,

00:05:36   I looked underneath the seat,

00:05:37   there's no screws underneath there,

00:05:38   but there's one tiny little tab

00:05:40   that was like stopping the seat

00:05:42   from going completely forward.

00:05:44   So you can move it forward and back.

00:05:45   And what prevented it?

00:05:46   Why did it stop going forward?

00:05:48   This is one tiny little tab

00:05:49   and it was made of flexible springy metal.

00:05:52   All right, so push that little springy tab down

00:05:55   into the slot and now all of a sudden the chair,

00:05:57   you can just keep turning the dial

00:05:58   and the chair slides right off the front.

00:05:59   Like the seat slides right off the front in one piece,

00:06:01   perfectly fine.

00:06:02   And then you have access to the body of the seat and then there's a plastic thing with some little you know

00:06:07   You peel off the plastic shroud with some little plastic clippy things in there. You'll see

00:06:11   the apparently expensive chair industry standard which is a t30 Torx screws and

00:06:17   They were like six of them and they were really hard to undo and they're humongous

00:06:21   Ebbol once I had all six of them out the arms came right off. No damage done at all reassembled perfectly

00:06:27   So happy to report that I now have two armless chairs and did not damage them and now I have

00:06:32   What I imagine is several hundred dollars worth of useless arms up in my attic

00:06:37   That's by the way, that's a I don't know even know if I would sell them because I'm such a hoarder but um

00:06:47   Point something I wish I had known earlier is you can buy the embody without arms for like $100 less

00:06:55   If you can find someone who will sell to you you can configure without arms and you will save like a hundred bucks on it

00:07:00   So it's no small amount as far as I could tell there was no place where you could buy

00:07:02   The gesture without arms booth gesture the arms in the gesture are kind of like half the point of the chair

00:07:08   They're very very configurable. They're actually really cool arms. I just don't want them on my chair. So that's it for my update

00:07:13   I'm sitting on the embody. There are no arms and we're off to the races life is good

00:07:17   Wait, what about your wife though? What if she wants arms on her chair tough no geez, she doesn't she doesn't want them

00:07:23   Oh, that was part of the prenup?

00:07:25   No, it was not part of the prenup, but she told me I don't want arms.

00:07:29   So they get in the way. She's used to having a chair with no arms as well, and they just get in the way.

00:07:33   So no arms for anybody.

00:07:35   I think that's bananas. I can't imagine not having arms on my chair. I'm serious, too.

00:07:39   I explained this in Slack today because you missed it, but I don't know if people deal with arms on a chair.

00:07:43   Like, if your arms are positioned ergonomically on the keyboard, like it should be like if you look at

00:07:50   yourself sitting at the seat in profile

00:07:52   It should be a 90 degree L from like your shoulder straight down to your elbow and then 90 degrees out to the keyboard

00:07:58   Right, that's where you want to be in that position

00:08:01   especially if you have long arms like mine your elbows are already low enough that they're probably bumping into the armrests like and

00:08:08   even if the armrests are below where your arms are if

00:08:11   You relax or move or whatever your arms might bump into the armrests

00:08:15   And I just feel like I feel constrained by the armrests that my elbows are constantly bumping them

00:08:19   So then I find myself pulling in my elbows to instinctively avoid bumping into the armrests, and that is uncomfortable and tense

00:08:26   So that's the first thing and the second thing is I apparently get in and out of the chair

00:08:29   Sideways all the time and when there are arms there you can't do that

00:08:33   Like you know you have to climb over them you have to rotate their pull out the chair and by the way these chairs are

00:08:37   Really heavy I wish they were lighter, and they don't roll that well on the carpet

00:08:41   But but bottom line is I get into the chairs from the side and once their arms

00:08:43   You can't get in from the side and the third the arms hit against my keyboard trait because of the height

00:08:48   They would have to be like if I put the arms below the level of my keyboard tray

00:08:52   They'd be so low that they'd be like hitting my hips and not my elbows

00:08:54   But like what the hell's the point thing?

00:08:56   So they're just they just arms just don't fit into my chair life at all

00:09:00   And I imagine a lot of people who have arms in their chair who don't mess with them

00:09:03   Their keyboard is too high

00:09:05   Like if your keyboard is on your desk chances are good

00:09:08   Your keyboard is too high

00:09:09   like if you sit properly and type and your arms do not make perfect 90 degree L's or or a

00:09:15   Larger angle so like you know 95 degrees or whatever so that the the angle at your elbows is bigger than 90

00:09:21   Then you're probably your keyboard is too high which may not bother you, but it's super bothers me a lot

00:09:25   Now all I can think of is I'm envisioning you

00:09:29   Mounting a chair by hopping one leg over it like Jonathan Frakes. You know I was gonna pull

00:09:35   I was gonna do the right reference like nobody's gonna get that but I guess

00:09:38   Me me enough the case you got it. Oh come on. I love the next generation

00:09:43   Why you gotta do this to me, Daddy?

00:09:44   Yeah, but when you watch Next Generation, did you know about that or did you only know

00:09:47   about it after the meme came?

00:09:48   Yeah, only after.

00:09:52   I think I'm more disappointed when I hear John Syracuse, "Mm-hmm," than when my own

00:09:56   father does the equivalent.

00:09:59   This is an abusive relationship.

00:10:00   Your own father has a podcast?

00:10:02   Oh my goodness.

00:10:05   Let's just move on to Ask ATP.

00:10:07   And Jonathan Rogers would like to know, "How do you all feel about Bitcoin/cryptocurrencies?

00:10:12   Do you think that there is a real long term value in them or are they just short term

00:10:14   speculation plays?

00:10:16   Do you buy into the underlying structure for sustaining billions of transactions in the

00:10:19   future or do you and do you hold any coins of any type?

00:10:23   I know almost nothing about any of this and have no cryptocurrencies of any sort.

00:10:28   And I would love to be enlightened.

00:10:30   And I did hear Glenn Fleischman, I think on the talk show, try to describe, he did describe

00:10:34   Bitcoin and it still flew right over my head.

00:10:37   And so I just don't get it.

00:10:39   I treat Bitcoin the same way I treat all other kind of

00:10:43   high risk, mostly luck based or speculation based

00:10:47   investments, which is, this is a game that other people play

00:10:51   that I should not play, and so I don't play.

00:10:54   I don't even own individual stocks anymore.

00:10:57   I used to have some of my savings be in an E-Trade account

00:11:02   that I could buy and sell individual stocks from,

00:11:05   and I did for a couple of years,

00:11:06   and I came out a little ahead,

00:11:09   but I was always worried about it,

00:11:11   and the ups and downs really annoyed me

00:11:12   and stressed me out, and all the index funds

00:11:16   over the same time beat my performance.

00:11:19   So it wasn't like I was being particularly special

00:11:21   or clever.

00:11:22   Pretty much any kind of manually managed

00:11:27   individual investments like this

00:11:30   are, I think, not a good use of my time or my money.

00:11:36   If you are a person who's more into doing that

00:11:39   and you get a lot of interest and value out of that,

00:11:43   that can be your game and more power to you.

00:11:46   But I decided that the best way for me to make more money

00:11:50   was to just do things that made me money,

00:11:52   like do more of them. (laughs)

00:11:53   And that was better than trying to extract

00:11:56   an extra five or 10% a year out of some

00:11:59   potentially lucky investments

00:12:00   that oftentimes weren't so lucky.

00:12:02   Bitcoin to me is no different than playing stocks.

00:12:06   It really isn't.

00:12:07   It's a volatile foreign currency basically.

00:12:10   Foreign exchange markets, commodity markets,

00:12:12   these are all types of commodity tradings.

00:12:15   Bitcoin is not the first thing to do this.

00:12:17   This world has existed for a very long time.

00:12:20   It is very clear what can happen in this world,

00:12:22   what can go well, what can go poorly.

00:12:25   Bitcoin is in some ways even less secure

00:12:27   than a lot of those things because of the way it works.

00:12:29   But as a way to make money,

00:12:34   I wouldn't advise people put a lot of faith

00:12:37   in systems like this.

00:12:39   As a fun thing to play around with,

00:12:40   or if you're doing it for more political reasons,

00:12:42   like you wanna make a statement about not being part

00:12:44   of the official banking systems and everything,

00:12:48   you might have other reasons.

00:12:51   But for making money, I don't think,

00:12:53   I think it's just, you might as well go to Vegas.

00:12:56   It's just gambling.

00:12:57   It's a different form of gambling.

00:13:01   I view this kind of in the same category as many other things in my life where I feel

00:13:08   like I was well positioned to know about this type of thing, because it's a tech thing,

00:13:17   well positioned to know about this thing more than regular people, to know about it sooner,

00:13:20   to understand it better, to sort of get into the ground floor, like another example are

00:13:24   a lot of like the internet IPOs and stuff from, you know, back in the days when no one

00:13:28   understood the internet, but I certainly did because I was on it very early, right? As

00:13:32   a techie person, there are some, you have some advantages in some realms and Bitcoin

00:13:37   falls into that category. And like all those other things, I kind of think of it as a yet

00:13:44   another case where I failed to make a lot of money and I could have. Because like, for

00:13:50   example, you know, if we all knew what we know now and put us back into 1990, like we

00:13:55   we would all be bazillionaires because you just know, you would know to like, first of

00:13:59   all, buy all the domain names you can get for like common names because some company

00:14:02   will buy them from you later. Like second of all, sink all your money into the stocks

00:14:06   that we know are going to go crazy, right? Like, you know, it's easy to go back in time

00:14:09   and understand, but we were there early and it's like, I knew domain names would have

00:14:12   value, but they were like, you know, 200 bucks to get one with Verisign or whatever. And

00:14:17   I couldn't afford that because I was a college student, you know, working a part-time job

00:14:21   to pay for my books living in a crappy dorm. Timing was kind of good, but not really. Same

00:14:27   thing with investment. I could have invested, I could have got a large amount of VA Linux

00:14:33   stock, because I contributed to CPAN, right? But I didn't have that kind of money to invest.

00:14:38   And I could have got like a 500% return on my investment if I had had the money to invest.

00:14:42   So Bitcoin, similarly, when Bitcoin was first going around, it was like, "Oh, I read up

00:14:48   on it, I learned about it, understood what the deal with it was. I even got to the point

00:14:51   where I downloaded the software and was mining for coins on my incredibly slow computer,

00:14:55   whatever the hell it was at that time, right? But I didn't, you know, didn't take it super

00:15:01   seriously and didn't invest a lot of time in it and, you know, it was kind of boring

00:15:06   to mine for coins and I was like, "Eh, I think I..." I don't remember what I got out of it.

00:15:11   Some fractional Bitcoin probably exists on some backup of my hard drive somewhere or,

00:15:15   You know, I don't know if I got one Bitcoin out of it. It's like oh you should dig that up

00:15:18   It's worth 700 bucks now. Like I don't even know what the hell that crap is

00:15:20   There's just another problem with the system that it's so based on like, you know, do you ever lose track your files?

00:15:26   Well, how would you feel those files are worth thousands of dollars?

00:15:28   So

00:15:32   but but unlike the investing gambling things it was a type of situation where

00:15:36   There was the possibility because that you are a nerd that you could have with like with no risk and no money upfront

00:15:43   It sounds like an ad like you just spend a little time on your computer because you're there early and because it was easier

00:15:48   To mine coins in the beginning than it is now right computationally speaking

00:15:52   You could have done what many people did is if you're just a little bit more interested in it and you had

00:15:58   Mind coins a little bit more thoroughly for like a month or something that didn't cost you anything

00:16:04   It's not like you're putting your life savings into it

00:16:05   You spent a little bit of time and you're having some fun and it's a hobby and it's an interesting thing

00:16:09   It's technically and why you doing this because you're a nerd and you know about this stuff and that

00:16:12   that would be worth a huge amount of money now, but I didn't do that. So the way I view Bitcoin is,

00:16:17   if you were in really early and mined when they were easy and held them instead of buying them to

00:16:22   order pizza like so many people did in the sad stories where they ordered, you know, they sold

00:16:26   their Bitcoins and ordered a pizza for 20 bucks and now the Bitcoins that they ordered that pizza

00:16:31   with are worth like, you know, 50 grand and I feel bad about it, right? I guess I suppose that would

00:16:35   be worse. But that time is over. Like we all miss that. And now it is like Marco said, it's just

00:16:41   just like, okay, well, now you look at it and you're like, this is just a giant soap

00:16:46   bubble floating through the air. That's either about to burst or something terrible will

00:16:51   happen or like it is, it is so incredibly risky and scary and you're, you know, supposed

00:16:58   to buy low and sell high, not to buy high and hope it's going to go way higher. And

00:17:02   obviously that's terrible advice if you're thinking of investing in Apple and it's 10

00:17:06   ago, but there's risk. You have to put in money to make money at this point, whereas

00:17:13   in the beginning, you put in nothing to make potentially huge, or nothing to make nothing.

00:17:17   It's like penny stocks. It's like very little investment, probably is going to come to nothing,

00:17:22   but it's such a small amount. And it's a fun thing to do. If you're into this nerdy stuff,

00:17:26   it's kind of fun. It's like Seddie at home, but for money. So I regret, obviously, not getting

00:17:33   more into it earlier but what can you do you can't tell the future and so anyway i have no

00:17:39   interest in getting into it now i don't quite understand how they could ever sustain any large

00:17:43   transaction volume i see lots of potential pitfalls this but i think it is very technically

00:17:47   interesting using math to make a bunch of uh parties who don't trust each other have a

00:17:54   verifiable trust relationship for transactions i think that's an important advancement both the

00:17:59   the math behind it, which is probably not that new,

00:18:01   but the implementations of it, which it is new idea to say,

00:18:04   can we actually implement this in a safe way without bugs

00:18:07   and problems and without letting more than 51% of the swarm

00:18:10   get a quorum and tip the whole market or whatever the hell?

00:18:14   Anyway, I think it's cool, but it's not for me.

00:18:16   - As much as I'm staying far away from it,

00:18:19   I know I've had no desire to get into it

00:18:22   for financial reasons, it is technically beautiful.

00:18:26   Like it is an amazing technical accomplishment and idea and I really respect that.

00:18:33   But you know, despite all of its other problems, it is pretty awesome of an idea and a concept

00:18:37   and I just have no interest in gambling with it as a financial instrument.

00:18:43   Well, what's not beautiful about it unfortunately is that due to the constraints of the current

00:18:47   implementations as in like what is it, parties that don't trust each other can have verifiable

00:18:52   relationships at low transaction volumes.

00:18:55   It has found its ecological niche, which is selling drugs and all sorts of illegal things.

00:19:01   There's a small number of parties who really, really don't trust each other and really don't

00:19:05   want to use the banking system, and they don't have a large transaction volume.

00:19:09   And so that's kind of sad.

00:19:13   But the transaction volume actually is a problem.

00:19:15   You can't move the entire banking system to a cryptocurrency until they sort those things

00:19:18   out, and who knows if they will.

00:19:20   But I do really like the idea of whatever, disintermediation or whatever the phrase was

00:19:24   in the 90s, which I think is still an important thing

00:19:27   because nobody likes middlemen.

00:19:30   When the middleman is math,

00:19:32   then there are lots of interesting things that can happen.

00:19:35   - Well, the other problem then is like,

00:19:36   the environmental cost of Bitcoin is really non-trivial.

00:19:41   Like, the amount of energy being wasted

00:19:46   because all of a sudden, wasting massive amounts of energy

00:19:49   now has a financial upside for the people

00:19:52   who are doing it, much more so than I think

00:19:54   it ever has before for doing apparently no other work.

00:19:57   That is not good.

00:19:59   It is a beautiful technical system that,

00:20:03   yeah, I think if you're right that like,

00:20:05   if it never scaled to be incredibly big,

00:20:07   it would have stayed a beautiful technical system,

00:20:10   but because of how big it is and because of how much money

00:20:13   could be made in it,

00:20:15   basically it's being exploited like crazy

00:20:19   for financial gain and the result is

00:20:24   pretty nasty burning of energy for no reason.

00:20:28   - Indeed.

00:20:28   Moving on, NeoIntendoNada,

00:20:32   which apparently somebody has translated to

00:20:34   I do not understand anything, would like to ask,

00:20:37   do you think the next iPhone SE will be called iPhone SE X?

00:20:41   Which was a funny thought to say the least.

00:20:46   - It'll be the Model 3.

00:20:48   - Yeah, exactly.

00:20:49   My thoughts on this is that the iPhone SE

00:20:52   just continue to be the iPhone SE. It will be more like a trim level, if you will, than

00:20:59   an individual model like iPhone 7. And so there will be, if there is another iPhone

00:21:04   SE, which I think there probably will be, and if it eventually gets all the nifty bits

00:21:10   from the iPhone X, then I think it will still just be the iPhone SE. It'll just be the,

00:21:16   you know, 2018 edition, if you will. I don't mean that in a literal sense, but it'll just

00:21:20   be the next version of it. What do you think Marco?

00:21:22   Yeah, honestly, I don't really care. It's a very nice important product, but I don't

00:21:27   really care what the name is. I could also say they might do SE2. I share your opinion

00:21:31   that it will probably get an update. I would expect it to get an update probably next spring.

00:21:36   Maybe it's called the SE2, maybe it's called the new iPhone SE, maybe it's called the iPhone

00:21:40   SE 2018 or whatever. It's fine. I put this question in here because I thought

00:21:45   it would be a quickie because I didn't think anyone would seriously try to answer it like

00:21:48   you two just did but good job for taking this. I just put it in here as yet another opportunity

00:21:54   for me to tell an old Mac person's story. For the people who don't know, I'm glad some

00:21:58   people in the chat room do know this, it shows that the right kind of old people are in our

00:22:01   chat room. But back in like 1988, '89, the Mac 2 had just come out and the successor

00:22:10   to the Mac 2 was called the Mac 2X. It was a faster version of the Mac 2. And the Mac

00:22:15   SE was the contemporary of the Mac 2, the all-in-one contemporary. So they made the Mac 2

00:22:19   gave way to the Mac 2X, so they had the Mac SE, naturally it should give way to the Mac SEX,

00:22:26   but of course they didn't want to do that because it spells out "sex" and they, you know, didn't want

00:22:30   to have a product by that name. So instead of calling it the Mac SEX, they called it the Mac SE/30,

00:22:37   and the SE30 is my favorite Mac ever, and its entire name is derived from Apple's desire not

00:22:43   not to have a computer named Sex.

00:22:45   And so it's funny, all these years later,

00:22:47   that they have painted themselves into the same corner

00:22:49   by having a successor product with a capital letter X

00:22:52   in its name and having a product with SE

00:22:54   whose natural successor were they to follow

00:22:56   that naming convention and make one with a notch

00:22:58   or something would have an X.

00:22:59   And so I think they should call it the iPhone SE30.

00:23:02   - Well, and also, I mean, realistically speaking,

00:23:04   sex thing aside, the X or X branding is the high-end phone.

00:23:09   And it's gonna remain the high-end phone

00:23:11   for probably quite some time.

00:23:13   I would honestly be surprised if, by the time,

00:23:16   like if the use of the letter X in the iPhone name

00:23:20   does indeed end up filtering down the line,

00:23:22   which is not a given, it might not.

00:23:24   If it filters down the line over time,

00:23:26   I bet by the time it gets to the point

00:23:28   where it would be suitable to use on a low-end model,

00:23:30   the iPhone SE will not be the name

00:23:32   that's used anymore for that model.

00:23:33   Like they will have moved on to some other naming convention

00:23:36   where SE is no longer used.

00:23:38   So it's a funny question, but I don't think

00:23:42   it would even be under consideration

00:23:44   because they're not bringing the letter X

00:23:46   down that low in the line.

00:23:48   - Yeah, and anyway, it's capital and it's a 10.

00:23:51   Like back in the Mac days, it was a lowercase x

00:23:53   and it was pronounced x.

00:23:55   So it really would have been a capital S,

00:23:57   capital E, lowercase x, and the two x was Roman numeral two,

00:24:00   you know, two big bars and then the lowercase x.

00:24:03   So that was it.

00:24:04   I just wanted to tell the story of the SC-30

00:24:05   for the people who don't know it.

00:24:07   I feel better for having known that story.

00:24:09   And in a very sad and terrible turn of events,

00:24:15   I did not get to do the Ask ATP notes before Jon did.

00:24:21   And normally that'd be kind of nice

00:24:23   'cause I've had a busy week,

00:24:24   but Jon has added the following question to Ask ATP.

00:24:29   So if you have any upset or angry emails

00:24:32   that you would like to send or tweets,

00:24:33   please send them to Jon Seracusa.

00:24:35   Anyway, James or James D, who asks,

00:24:38   "What's the best place to start

00:24:40   "when trying to listen to Fish?"

00:24:41   - John, do you have any opinions on this?

00:24:44   (laughing)

00:24:45   - My opinion is that everybody should get a question

00:24:47   that's aimed at them every once in a while,

00:24:49   so this one's for you, Marko.

00:24:50   (laughing)

00:24:51   - Casey, do you wanna go first?

00:24:52   - I would say that you're gonna say

00:24:55   some sort of live show, probably the New Year's Eve show

00:24:58   from the most recent year.

00:24:59   - Okay, so basically, what you need to know

00:25:02   getting into Phish is that the albums are a great place to start to get to know what

00:25:08   their music roughly sounds like, but what most Phish fans listen to most of the time

00:25:13   is the live shows because they are substantially better if Phish is the kind of thing you're

00:25:19   into. Like, you can listen to the albums first, and they're on every streaming service now,

00:25:23   and everybody has a streaming subscription for something these days, so you can listen

00:25:28   listen to Phish music on pretty much anywhere,

00:25:30   any service you have, I would suggest start,

00:25:34   if you can, if your service has it, and most of them do,

00:25:37   start with one of the live albums.

00:25:40   Now, it's a little different than most bands in that

00:25:43   while they have live album releases that span

00:25:46   like the last 20 years, they've put out maybe 10

00:25:49   official albums that are live.

00:25:50   And one of the first ones is called a live one.

00:25:53   That's on all the services, you can definitely listen

00:25:55   a live one if you wanted to, and it's good.

00:25:58   But unlike most bands, every single Phish show,

00:26:02   every concert they do is recorded from the soundboard,

00:26:06   professionally mastered, and released a few hours

00:26:08   after the show ends as a legal, purchasable download

00:26:12   from a site that they're affiliated with

00:26:13   called livephish.com, I think.

00:26:16   Live Phish also has iOS apps where I think

00:26:19   you can stream for free, you just can't pick

00:26:21   what they're playing, but it's like a constant live stream

00:26:24   that I think you can do for free.

00:26:25   So if you listen on your streaming service of choice

00:26:28   and you decide that this is something you wanna hear more of

00:26:31   the way to get more into it is not to go listen

00:26:33   to all their studio albums if you don't really,

00:26:36   the way to get into it is to listen to more live shows.

00:26:38   And once you exhaust the official releases

00:26:41   that they've done over time,

00:26:43   the way to get more into it after that

00:26:44   is to go to Live Fish, their app or their website,

00:26:48   and either preview for free or buy the stuff there.

00:26:52   And that's it. And enjoy.

00:26:55   That took a lot less time than I expected.

00:26:57   I hope you'll insert some fish clip after you say the word "enjoy" at that point.

00:27:03   Just like a guitar riff, or like three of the words from the middle of the nine words that are in the middle of a half an hour song.

00:27:08   [music]

00:27:18   You have to put in "meat stick" because that is the most preposterous fish song.

00:27:21   ♫ Time for the meat stick

00:27:23   ♫ Bury the meat stick

00:27:24   ♫ Take out the meat stick

00:27:26   ♫ Time

00:27:27   - Well, which one?

00:27:28   I have, hold on, 37 recordings of meat stick

00:27:33   in my collection.

00:27:33   So, for reference, I have 7,700 fish songs,

00:27:37   over 112 gigs that span 42 days of total time.

00:27:42   And that's only what they've done since about 2009.

00:27:46   - And you buy every single show, is that right?

00:27:48   - Yeah, I buy the, like they have like season passes

00:27:50   on Live Fish whenever a new tour is announced

00:27:53   and you can pre-order the entire tour as legal downloads.

00:27:57   So I just do that.

00:27:58   So usually it's like a couple hundred bucks

00:27:59   for a whole summer tour or something like that

00:28:01   and I just do that.

00:28:03   If you're, so I should point out too,

00:28:05   if you're more into going to concerts,

00:28:09   they put on a great show and they put on lots of them.

00:28:11   And so even though they sell out,

00:28:14   they put on just so many shows

00:28:15   that they aren't that hard to get into if you try.

00:28:18   and you don't have to pay a ridiculous price

00:28:20   to do it or anything.

00:28:21   So if you are a concert goer,

00:28:23   I highly suggest you go to their concerts.

00:28:25   I personally just don't enjoy going to concerts very much.

00:28:27   I have been to exactly one fish show and it was fine,

00:28:31   but I didn't feel like I needed to go to more.

00:28:33   I really love listening to the live shows,

00:28:36   but I'm not a concert person.

00:28:36   But if you're a concert person,

00:28:38   especially if you're into the drug scene at all,

00:28:39   which again, I am not,

00:28:41   they are apparently a great place to be

00:28:43   if you're into that.

00:28:44   We are sponsored this week by Aftershokz.

00:28:47   bone conduction headphones.

00:28:48   Go to ATP.aftershocks.com to learn more.

00:28:52   Aftershocks headphones work by bone conduction.

00:28:54   So small transducers resting in front of your ears

00:28:57   send small vibrations through your cheekbones

00:29:00   directly to your inner ear.

00:29:02   So they're not really putting anything

00:29:03   in or on your ears themselves.

00:29:05   It's all going through your cheekbone

00:29:07   from the front of your ear.

00:29:08   So this leaves your actual ears totally open

00:29:11   with nothing blocking them, nothing making them sweaty,

00:29:14   nothing making them hurt.

00:29:15   So of course this is great for comfort,

00:29:17   for exercise, for hot weather.

00:29:19   They're even IP55 certified for water resistance,

00:29:21   so you don't have to worry about that.

00:29:23   The biggest thing for me, the big advantage of these

00:29:25   is because they leave your ears open,

00:29:27   you hear the world around you in addition to,

00:29:30   say, the podcast you're listening to

00:29:31   or the phone call you're taking.

00:29:33   So this actually isn't so great

00:29:34   if you're in a very loud place,

00:29:36   like a subway station in a big city.

00:29:38   But it's awesome if you want to do things like

00:29:41   listen to a podcast or take a phone call while walking

00:29:44   or while running or cycling,

00:29:46   where you really need to hear the world around you

00:29:48   for practical or safety reasons.

00:29:51   And that could be as simple as you're at home

00:29:53   and you need to take a phone call

00:29:54   or you wanna listen to podcasts

00:29:55   and you wanna know maybe when your kid upstairs

00:29:57   wakes up from their nap.

00:29:58   Or if somebody knocks on the door,

00:30:00   you wanna be able to hear it.

00:30:01   So this is great, not for loud environments,

00:30:04   not for like pristine music listening,

00:30:06   but for practical speech content.

00:30:08   Phone calls, podcasts, audiobooks, it's great for that

00:30:12   when you're in an environment where you want

00:30:14   or need to hear the world around you.

00:30:16   I highly suggest using these things

00:30:18   if you have a need like that.

00:30:19   I have been using them myself.

00:30:20   I'm a big fan.

00:30:21   I had great headphones that I loved before this

00:30:24   for walking around and these have totally replaced them.

00:30:26   They are wonderful.

00:30:27   So check out the Aftershokz line of headphones.

00:30:29   They have the titanium model which I had at first.

00:30:32   They now also have the air model which is even lighter

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00:30:39   Check out the lineup today at ATP.Aftershokz.com.

00:30:42   That's ATP.aftersocks.com.

00:30:45   Thank you so much to AfterSocks for sponsoring our show.

00:30:47   (upbeat music)

00:30:51   - So this week, as we record, in fact it will be

00:30:55   in just a couple of days, is iPhone 10 pre-order time.

00:31:00   Because the world revolves around California

00:31:03   and California's stuck in the past,

00:31:05   which is to say outside of Hawaii and I guess Alaska,

00:31:09   it is the last American time zone,

00:31:11   please don't email me. The pre-orders will go up at midnight California time, and as

00:31:19   they do every year, California gives a big middle finger to the rest of the world, especially

00:31:23   country. And at three o'clock in the morning, I will be waking up on Friday morning to pre-order

00:31:28   two iPhone 10s, one for me, one for Aaron. And I genuinely, genuinely will be stunned

00:31:36   if I receive either of these in 2017.

00:31:41   I will be getting one of the,

00:31:43   I don't remember the official name, white,

00:31:45   and one of the, I don't remember the official name, black.

00:31:47   (John laughs)

00:31:48   - That's all you need to know.

00:31:49   - Yeah, both 256 gigs because children and movies

00:31:54   and things of that nature,

00:31:55   and I will be sufficiently broke thereafter.

00:31:59   John, what is your intention for this coming Friday?

00:32:02   - So half the reason I put this topic in

00:32:03   was just to have someone who knows and cares more than I do tell me exactly what time this

00:32:09   is happening so I can decide whether I'm going to be doing anything. Obviously I'm not ordering

00:32:12   one for myself but potentially I could be trying to do this at 3 a.m. for my wife for

00:32:17   her phone. I need her to tell me what color she wants and what size I guess. Those are

00:32:22   the only options right? Color and size? Yeah. Yeah there's only two sizes 64 256 right so

00:32:27   So yeah, because even if, like, I think she wants to know whether she really wants this

00:32:34   first, but you can always cancel an order.

00:32:37   So it kind of makes sense to just, like, try to get in, and if you happen to get an order

00:32:40   and you're lucky, fine.

00:32:41   And probably before your order ships, you'll be able to, like, see it in a store or something,

00:32:44   I'm assuming.

00:32:45   And you can always just return it after, what is it, a 14-day return window or whatever.

00:32:50   Yeah.

00:32:51   So I assume that she's going to want a pre-order for this.

00:32:55   And so this may be the first time I actually do this.

00:32:56   I've never done it before because I was just waiting for my phone and normally she doesn't

00:32:59   care when we do it but I think she's getting impatient with her phone which by the way

00:33:02   this is her phone she's got an iPhone 6s plus and it's got the latest version of iOS 11

00:33:07   on it and she says it's like slowing down and getting all sort of stuttery and stuff

00:33:14   and I did notice her animations were stuttery so I turned on reduce motions like hey it's

00:33:17   fixed no more stuttery animations but she still complains that it's slow and crap like

00:33:22   maybe her storage is filling up, I gotta look at it,

00:33:25   but if anyone has any bright ideas on how to,

00:33:28   if there's some sort of problem related to iOS 11

00:33:32   that makes iPhone 6S Plus a slow down,

00:33:34   'cause 6S Plus isn't that old, I think it should be fine,

00:33:36   but anyway, she's getting frustrated with her current phone

00:33:40   and wants the phone sooner rather than later.

00:33:42   So if she can't get in a pre-order for this,

00:33:45   she might just buy an 8 Plus,

00:33:47   which would be perfectly fine and she'd be happy with it,

00:33:49   but it's certainly more boring than trying the 10.

00:33:53   - Let me just put it on record, Jon,

00:33:54   before we hear Marco's intentions,

00:33:55   that if you order Tina a phone,

00:33:58   and if she does not want it,

00:33:59   I would like dibs on buying it off of you.

00:34:01   - Yeah, you don't even know what color it's gonna be.

00:34:03   - I don't care.

00:34:04   - Or what size, what if she wants a 64?

00:34:06   - I don't care.

00:34:07   I am that like, so this is the first worldiest

00:34:11   of first world problems, right?

00:34:12   That I'm this worked up as I get every year

00:34:15   about getting the new Apple hotness quickly.

00:34:17   But this is even worse than every other year

00:34:20   because Apple has all but come out and said,

00:34:22   or maybe they did say at some point,

00:34:23   but they've all but come out and said,

00:34:25   "Good friggin' luck getting this anytime soon."

00:34:27   So I am trying to work whatever angle I can

00:34:31   in order to get myself an iPhone X as quickly as possible.

00:34:34   That being said, Marco, what's your intention?

00:34:37   - So I'm gonna get, well, I'm going to try to get

00:34:40   (laughing)

00:34:41   the white one.

00:34:43   I love Kim Allberg, user in the chat, said,

00:34:46   the official color names are kinda black and somewhat white.

00:34:50   (laughing)

00:34:51   I'm going for the somewhat white variety.

00:34:54   - Oh, is that right?

00:34:55   - Yeah, you know, so I've had every single iPhone

00:34:59   that I've had so far has been in whatever version of black

00:35:03   was the blackest black they had that year.

00:35:05   And so like I have jet black iPhone 7 currently,

00:35:09   and you know, before that just space gray,

00:35:10   space gray, space gray.

00:35:11   It's funny, Apple has no idea what color space is clearly,

00:35:14   all the different space grays I've had, but it's just--

00:35:16   In various points in the past, I have had interest

00:35:19   in getting one of the lighter backed ones,

00:35:20   like the silver backed ones, just for variety's sake

00:35:23   or certain models, I thought it looked better.

00:35:25   But I never wanted the white front plate on it

00:35:30   like above the screen and everything.

00:35:32   Just like John, I just don't think those look very good.

00:35:34   Now I have the option to get either color

00:35:36   with the same black notch and black bezel around it.

00:35:40   So honestly, in the pictures I've seen so far,

00:35:43   which admittedly is not many of them

00:35:45   because nobody has these yet,

00:35:46   but in the picture I saw from the launch event

00:35:48   from the backstage area,

00:35:49   I thought the kinda white one looked better

00:35:52   than the somewhat black one.

00:35:54   But again, it could just be because I just want variety,

00:35:57   'cause I've had so many black phones in a row.

00:35:59   Anyway, so I'm gonna go for that one.

00:36:01   I'm gonna go for the large capacity

00:36:03   and the Verizon or SIM-free one,

00:36:06   if I can at all get it anytime soon,

00:36:08   because I am an AT&T customer,

00:36:12   and I'm not interested in changing networks

00:36:13   because Verizon doesn't actually cover my house

00:36:15   or most of my neighborhood very well.

00:36:17   The reason I want the Verizon version,

00:36:18   despite not being a Verizon customer,

00:36:20   is that they're doing the same thing again this year

00:36:22   that they started last year with the 7,

00:36:24   which is that for the GSM only ones,

00:36:27   the ones that are being sold as AT&T phones in the US,

00:36:30   and I don't know what the situation is elsewhere,

00:36:32   those have an Intel cellular modem.

00:36:35   And the ones that are sold either SIM-free

00:36:38   or that are sold on CDMA-based networks,

00:36:40   like Verizon and Sprint are using a Qualcomm modem.

00:36:45   Allegedly when this started last year with the 7,

00:36:48   oh the modems are the same, it doesn't matter,

00:36:50   whatever phone you get it's fine.

00:36:51   And there have been other iPhones in the past

00:36:52   that had minor component variations,

00:36:54   like whether you got a Samsung or TSMC system on a chip

00:36:58   and I think the 6S generation had

00:37:00   a minor battery variation and stuff.

00:37:02   Anyway, I have found with my experience

00:37:05   with the Intel modem iPhone 7s on AT&T,

00:37:09   I've had a lot of call dropping problems

00:37:12   where my microphone on my phone will stop working

00:37:14   and the person on their end will not be able to hear me.

00:37:17   And I have done a lot of research,

00:37:18   I've heard from a lot of people, customers,

00:37:21   I've even heard from a few geniuses at Apple bars

00:37:24   or Groves or whatever, are they called arborists now

00:37:26   'cause they're in the Grove?

00:37:27   I don't know what they are.

00:37:29   Anyway, I've heard from a couple of arborists

00:37:31   that this is actually a pretty big thing,

00:37:33   that it's a pretty widespread issue

00:37:36   that the Intel modem AT&T iPhone 7s

00:37:38   frequently have this issue where the microphone

00:37:42   drops out during a phone call.

00:37:43   Like this is just a thing.

00:37:45   And so I'm trying my best with this generation,

00:37:47   and by the way, this has been really annoying.

00:37:49   Like you think you don't get, you know,

00:37:51   as a nerd you think, oh I never make phone calls,

00:37:53   it isn't that big of a deal.

00:37:55   And then I'm like on the phone with somebody at Apple

00:37:57   and it drops.

00:37:58   And it's like, you don't want those calls to be unreliable

00:38:01   when they happen for an app developer.

00:38:02   Like you want to stay on that call.

00:38:04   It's really annoying when that happens,

00:38:07   and it makes it very hard to use this as a phone.

00:38:09   And I've actually had two different iPhone 7s,

00:38:12   because one was replaced for a bad lightning port

00:38:14   halfway through the year,

00:38:15   and they both do it to some degree,

00:38:17   so I know it's not just some fluke thing

00:38:18   with my very first one.

00:38:20   TIFFs did it too.

00:38:21   They all do it, right?

00:38:22   And it's just an issue of whether,

00:38:24   whatever network conditions cause this,

00:38:27   whether that affects where you are or not

00:38:28   is whether it's gonna happen to you or not, it seems.

00:38:30   But anyway, so I'm trying my hardest

00:38:32   to get the Qualcomm modem and the iPhone 10.

00:38:35   And the only way to do that is to get the Verizon

00:38:37   or SIM-free version in the US.

00:38:38   And they're not gonna probably offer

00:38:40   the SIM-free version for a while.

00:38:41   They usually, they don't, with the high-profile release,

00:38:43   they don't usually offer it immediately.

00:38:44   Usually it's a few weeks out or a couple months out even.

00:38:47   So I'm gonna try to get a Verizon one,

00:38:50   but I don't have a Verizon account,

00:38:52   so it's gonna be pretty much impossible for me

00:38:54   to actually place an order for that.

00:38:56   So what I'm probably gonna end up having to do

00:38:58   is order the AT&T when in the app

00:39:00   or whatever I do that night,

00:39:01   and then just go to the stores constantly

00:39:03   over the next few weeks,

00:39:04   'cause there's no way it's coming on day one.

00:39:06   So go to the stores for the next few weeks

00:39:08   and I hope I can get myself a Verizon One

00:39:09   or a SIM-free one somehow.

00:39:11   And that's about it.

00:39:12   I too am gonna wake up at three in the morning

00:39:16   and I'm gonna try to place my order.

00:39:18   I know I'm not gonna be able to

00:39:20   and when I am finally able to,

00:39:21   probably 10 minutes into the ordering window,

00:39:24   the delivery dates, if I'm lucky, will be December.

00:39:28   If I'm more honest with myself, probably January,

00:39:31   or even later into 2018.

00:39:35   So I'm just not that optimistic about my chances

00:39:40   of getting it in the app.

00:39:42   The only reason I'm waking up at 3 a.m. at all

00:39:44   is that on the off chance that Apple has made more of them

00:39:49   than they thought they would this week or whatever,

00:39:52   and if you can actually place an order at 3 a.m.

00:39:55   and get it within a couple of weeks of launch day,

00:39:59   I will feel really stupid if I didn't do that.

00:40:01   (laughs)

00:40:02   If I decide to just get up at 8 a.m.

00:40:04   and try to place me over there and then go to the stores

00:40:06   and just hope for the best, I'm gonna feel really stupid.

00:40:08   But I am not optimistic.

00:40:10   I think it's gonna be a really bad scene.

00:40:13   I think even people who get there

00:40:15   in the first minute or two of the orders being open

00:40:18   are gonna be seeing dates in December.

00:40:20   - Yep.

00:40:21   - And it's gonna be rough.

00:40:23   And that's if you're lucky.

00:40:25   if you're lucky to get it this year.

00:40:27   And I really am a little worried for what this is going

00:40:32   to do for Apple's financials and their sales numbers

00:40:35   and everything for the next few quarters,

00:40:36   because I really don't think they're gonna sell

00:40:41   nearly as many of these as there's demand for,

00:40:45   but the people who have been waiting for this,

00:40:48   some portion of them will say, "All right, forget it.

00:40:50   "If I can't get this anytime soon,"

00:40:52   or if the initial reviews come out

00:40:54   and there's some annoyance with them

00:40:55   that certain people don't wanna deal with

00:40:58   or that won't solve their needs well enough,

00:41:01   there is gonna be some percentage of those people

00:41:03   who say, "All right, forget it, I'll get an eight plus,"

00:41:05   or, "I'll get an eight and that'll be it."

00:41:07   And so, Apple will cell phone to those people for sure.

00:41:10   If I had to guess, I'm guessing that Friday,

00:41:15   after everyone has tried to place an order

00:41:17   for the iPhone X and has been told it's gonna be January,

00:41:21   I'm guessing Friday afternoon is gonna be

00:41:25   probably the second biggest sales day

00:41:28   for the iPhone 8 Plus for its entire run.

00:41:31   The biggest was probably its opening day.

00:41:33   I bet the 8 Plus has its second biggest day on Friday

00:41:36   because of all those people who are gonna be discouraged

00:41:38   from the X, sorry, 10,

00:41:40   and I honestly didn't mean to do that.

00:41:43   They're gonna be discouraged from the 10

00:41:44   and they're gonna say, "All right, forget it.

00:41:45   "I'll get the 8 Plus," and that'll be that.

00:41:48   But that's gonna be some percentage of people.

00:41:51   I don't think it's gonna be a high percentage of people.

00:41:52   I think most of the people who are really holding out

00:41:55   for the iPhone X are not gonna settle

00:41:58   for the 8 Plus or the 8.

00:42:00   They're gonna just wait for the 10,

00:42:02   even if that means springtime.

00:42:04   And by then, they might say, you know what,

00:42:08   now I'm a third of the way until the next iPhone comes out,

00:42:12   I'll just wait 'til the X2

00:42:13   or whatever might come out next fall.

00:42:16   If the shipping delays are long enough,

00:42:18   they run that risk.

00:42:20   So this actually might be a problem.

00:42:23   Like Apple is taking a pretty big risk here

00:42:26   with the way they have launched this phone.

00:42:29   I'll tell you one thing,

00:42:31   I would not want to be Tim Cook for the next year.

00:42:34   That, well, I mean, I guess,

00:42:35   he probably has a pretty good life.

00:42:36   (laughing)

00:42:38   But like, I have a feeling he's gonna be

00:42:41   under a lot of scrutiny if these financials don't work out

00:42:46   because they can't sell enough of the iPhones

00:42:48   that people actually are waiting for.

00:42:49   going to be a problem for Tim Cook? I think it'll even out over time though because I feel like

00:42:54   all the reports we're seeing about inventory problems are all, none of them say it's anything

00:42:59   systemic. Like a year from now this should be settled, right? And so that's bad because you

00:43:04   got a whole year of under shipment, right? But that it evens out eventually and I think he always

00:43:08   takes the long view. Yes, people are going to complain to him about, "Oh, the numbers are crappy

00:43:12   or whatever," but that over a two-year, three-year time period, this, you know, the sales of this

00:43:18   phone will just be a different shape but the total numbers should be good because as you

00:43:22   said if they sales they lose for people who want to buy a 10 but can't get it are probably

00:43:27   going to go to the 8 they have good retention and they're not gonna say well if I can't

00:43:30   get a 10 I'm gonna try an Android phone I mean there's some of that always but I think

00:43:34   the bigger potential problem is not inventory which is you know it's bad it's better if

00:43:40   you have enough phones to sell to people that's much better right but it does even out over

00:43:43   the long haul if things are good, the real danger is what if the X is not that good?

00:43:48   What if the X does not satisfy the customers who all think they want it now?

00:43:54   Because that doesn't even out over time, that gets worse over time.

00:43:57   And that increases the chance that someone's going to go to try an Android phone or something

00:44:01   like that.

00:44:02   So I bet he's more worried.

00:44:05   Apple should be more worried about the X not being a good phone than they are about not

00:44:08   having enough of them.

00:44:09   They should be worried about not having enough of them, but not as much as not having a good

00:44:13   And from my perspective like I'm I always counsel patients on this like I'm not even getting one

00:44:17   It just so happens that there's this confluence of events where you know

00:44:21   My wife's phone is old and it's her year and it's getting slow because of iOS 11 or it could just because of upgrade a

00:44:27   Lot of voodoo people suggest to try to uh, you know, make it become faster including resetting a bunch of stuff

00:44:33   But I hate doing that because like if you reset stuff and it doesn't make it faster

00:44:36   Then you have to change all your settings back for you just you just cost yourself even more time and be more

00:44:42   Anyway, she's impatient. I'm not

00:44:44   Casey is always impatient obviously as he already described that he needs to have a new phone

00:44:48   Now now now and Marco kind of needs to have the new phone now now now as well as far as I'm concerned

00:44:54   I don't want yeah, I think Marco and I are probably tied for least amount of patient

00:44:59   But he's got he's got at least a legit reason that he can rationalize like he's got to develop an app for it and everything

00:45:04   Right. Hey, I do this for a living. Yeah, but

00:45:08   You're gonna have you're gonna have one available at work like it doesn't have to be your personal phone am I

00:45:13   Yeah, sure right. I mean if it's important for you for your application to be available

00:45:18   Yeah, but but everyone like everyone at everyone's job is under the same problem that we're like I know

00:45:23   Same problem right, but you have a lot more than you don't have to get a phone

00:45:27   Just somebody that so what I'm getting at is that I think just someone on

00:45:30   ATP needs to have the phone for the purposes of doing this show right, but we don't all need to have the phone

00:45:36   So I think it'll be fine if we just get one of them in of course it would be nice if Apple just sent us

00:45:39   one to review hint in to Apple people

00:45:41   But so far podcast still don't exist as far as they're concerned

00:45:44   So we wait patiently and we will try to order with the rest of the people for a loose definition of patiently

00:45:51   But yes

00:45:52   But yeah for but for regular people who are not in a hurry just wait like wait until the spring nothing will happen to you

00:45:58   If your phone currently works fine, and isn't like doesn't have some weird problem

00:46:01   It's making you want to get it

00:46:02   don't feel that thing that Casey feels where he just needs to have the newest greatest

00:46:05   phone like especially in the case of the X which might be annoying or problematic in

00:46:10   ways that nobody knows yet because nobody has them and it's very different than the

00:46:13   other phone. It's not a known quantity. There's so many things that could go wrong with it.

00:46:16   So and you don't want the first batch of them like there are so many reasons to just relax.

00:46:22   Just it's so much more relaxing to be pretend you're not listening to a tech podcast and

00:46:25   pretend you just wander into an Apple store in March and go "Oh look at these new iPhones."

00:46:29   They go buy one of these and they'll say "Would you like one?" and you'll say "Yes, I would

00:46:32   like one and they'll bring it from the back for you and you'll buy it like a normal person

00:46:35   who doesn't listen to the accidental tech podcast. It's a cool way to live.

00:46:40   I will also say like in in the craziness of trying to get one, if you buy one from somebody

00:46:46   else, don't have them ship it in the box that Apple shipped to them in. As I learned last

00:46:55   year in this horrible incident, oh, I still feel so bad. In this horrible incident, basically,

00:47:01   I think Apple tracks them pretty well

00:47:04   when they ship them to the original customer,

00:47:07   such that I don't think people at UPS

00:47:10   are trying to steal them or anything like that

00:47:12   out of the boxes that Apple ships them in.

00:47:14   But if you re-tape up that box

00:47:16   and ship it to somebody else as resale,

00:47:19   those happen to get stolen quite a lot,

00:47:21   as I learned last year.

00:47:23   And so don't do that.

00:47:24   Put it in a different box, maybe,

00:47:26   and maybe don't try to resell it.

00:47:29   If you do try to resell it, yeah, for the love of God,

00:47:31   put it in a different box and don't label it iPhone

00:47:34   or anything.

00:47:34   - What did you get in your box?

00:47:38   You didn't get like a rock or something, did you?

00:47:39   - No, it was just the plastic wrap from the outside

00:47:41   of the iPhone box.

00:47:43   Packing peanuts and plastic wrap.

00:47:45   - It's a little bit classier when they replace it

00:47:46   with a rock or something.

00:47:47   I feel like that shows the personal touch for the thieves.

00:47:49   - Yeah, I got a very lightweight box

00:47:52   that was literally stolen from the UPS supply chain

00:47:55   because it was stamped before,

00:47:57   like it had its weight stamped on its label

00:47:59   before it was replaced by nothing.

00:48:02   So that was fun.

00:48:04   Yeah, the other thing I would say is

00:48:06   if you think you might want one,

00:48:09   don't follow Jon's advice and be patient.

00:48:11   If you think there's any chance you might want one,

00:48:13   put an order in.

00:48:14   'Cause you can cancel it with like three clicks

00:48:17   if you decide before it ships that you don't want it.

00:48:19   Just put the order in if you are at all on the fence

00:48:22   because then you'll at least have an option to get one

00:48:25   in two months when it finally ships.

00:48:28   Like you'll have a date that you can get one.

00:48:30   - But now you're tempting people to stay awake at 3 a.m.

00:48:33   or midnight at least.

00:48:35   Like you're saying, well if you're gonna order it,

00:48:36   you might as well order it at the beginning,

00:48:37   is why you're ordering anyway.

00:48:38   So then now you're setting your alarm

00:48:40   for midnight or 3 a.m.

00:48:41   I'm saying no, don't do it.

00:48:42   - That is what I'm saying.

00:48:43   I am actually saying like just like,

00:48:45   if you think there's any way you can,

00:48:47   if you think there's any chance you're gonna want one,

00:48:49   stay up till 3 a.m. or wake up at 3 a.m. and do it.

00:48:52   - Plus you're encouraging more competition for us,

00:48:55   the homeless people.

00:48:55   - That's the bigger problem.

00:48:57   - Stay up till 3.15 a.m. and order it.

00:48:59   - There we go.

00:49:00   - So you're all over 3.15.

00:49:01   - Yeah.

00:49:02   - That's the other thing I'm hoping,

00:49:03   considering I might actually be doing this this year,

00:49:05   is I'm hoping that the casuals all bought iPhone 8s, right?

00:49:10   Normally there's this big pent up demand for the new phone

00:49:13   and everyone who wants the new phone goes at once,

00:49:16   but now we have it tiered where it's like,

00:49:18   you want the new phone,

00:49:19   but do you want the super expensive one

00:49:21   or do you just want the new iPhone?

00:49:22   'Cause the 8s are pretty good and it's new

00:49:24   and it's different enough that I think it satisfies

00:49:26   what people want, you know, it's like,

00:49:28   it's a different outside with the glass things

00:49:30   and the better cameras and you know,

00:49:32   all that other good stuff, different colors, right?

00:49:34   I hope those people are people

00:49:36   that you would have normally been competing with.

00:49:38   Like those people were there trying to get the sevens

00:49:40   or whatever, right?

00:49:41   But a lot of those people go out and they got the eights now

00:49:43   leaving, I hope, a smaller group of people for the 10.

00:49:46   Now, unfortunately, that smaller group of people for the 10

00:49:49   is probably competing for a way, way, way, way, way

00:49:51   smaller number of 10s that are gonna ship in 2017.

00:49:54   So, it's probably not good, but I do like the fact

00:49:57   that at least we got a little bit of help

00:49:58   from the people buying aids.

00:50:00   - Yeah, but yeah, I wouldn't count on that too much

00:50:03   to actually helping.

00:50:04   - Yeah.

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00:52:08   So I was wondering, this is probably our last time

00:52:15   to talk about the 10 or speculate about it

00:52:17   before this actual press review is out, I would guess.

00:52:20   Is there anything about,

00:52:21   so John, you mentioned earlier that the biggest risk

00:52:24   for Apple with a 10 is that it has some kind of problem

00:52:26   or it isn't very good or isn't very compelling after all.

00:52:30   What do you think the biggest risks are for it?

00:52:32   Like, what are the biggest ways that this might not pan out?

00:52:36   - So, I mean, the big ones that a lot of the presses

00:52:39   talk about is Face ID.

00:52:40   And I think that is, again, not having ever tried it

00:52:45   and not getting much information from the people who did.

00:52:48   If Face ID doesn't work well enough,

00:52:52   I don't know if it has to be as good as Touch ID

00:52:55   out of the gate, but it has to be close.

00:52:58   Let's put it this way, to use a bad analogy

00:53:00   that will make everyone sad.

00:53:01   If Face ID works like Siri, it will be a bad scene.

00:53:04   'Cause Siri does work and you can demo it

00:53:09   and it does cool things, but for the unlocking your phone,

00:53:12   If Face ID falls below some minimum threshold of convenience, people unlock their phones

00:53:17   a lot.

00:53:18   And I think a lot of people lock their phones now.

00:53:20   We're not in the old days where you just slide to unlock.

00:53:22   People have codes on their phones, they're used to Touch ID.

00:53:25   Touch ID is amazing and works great.

00:53:28   Face ID has some minimum bar that it has to reach.

00:53:30   So if it doesn't reach that, that is a big problem because no one wants to get a phone

00:53:34   and just really be annoyed every time you have to unlock it.

00:53:38   And the second thing is app updates.

00:53:41   You have to update your app to deal with the stupid rounded corners and the home line thing

00:53:45   and the notch.

00:53:47   And obviously, and I listed them probably in the order that they're annoying.

00:53:50   Like you would think the notch is the problem, but having seen overcast and simulator slingshots

00:53:55   and everything, like it seems clear that the rounded corners are a much bigger problem

00:53:58   than you think if you're not, if you haven't considered how you're going to fit your app

00:54:01   into that, because it really does cut off a lot of things.

00:54:04   And so updating apps, how fast the developer is going to do it.

00:54:07   If you buy a new phone and face ID works great, but every app you put on it looks all weird

00:54:10   and janky and goes crazy in landscape, even though it's not "the phone's problem" like

00:54:15   "oh the phone is fine, nothing wrong with the phone" people will have a bad impression.

00:54:20   I waited all this time, I stay up till 3am, I spent $1200 and as a reward all my apps

00:54:27   look and work weird on this phone.

00:54:29   Those are the two that occurred to me right off the bat.

00:54:32   Setting aside like all the batteries exploded or some kind of hardware reliability problem

00:54:35   or you know, all that stuff that can happen with any phone.

00:54:37   But the things that are unique to the X, Face ID and app updates.

00:54:42   I agree with Jon.

00:54:43   I am super curious to see real world reviews of Face ID because I suspect it's going to

00:54:54   be as good as Apple promises, but I'm scared.

00:54:59   And I've talked to friends at Apple that have used them and they all say, "No, really, it's

00:55:06   amazing, but I don't know. I want to have a third party tell me what they think. And

00:55:14   I'm cautiously optimistic that it will be very good, and I think it's going to be pretty

00:55:21   darn amazing. I think the Face ID is the most obvious stumbling block that could happen,

00:55:27   but I think the most obvious stumbling block that will happen is what Jon said about third

00:55:31   third party apps, that they're just not updated

00:55:34   in a timely fashion or not updated well

00:55:36   or whatever the case may be, and I think that's the thing

00:55:39   that is going to be most telling.

00:55:41   And we'll see, whenever these reviews come out,

00:55:44   we'll see if the reviewers have run into a lot of that.

00:55:48   - Yeah, I think you guys pretty much covered

00:55:51   what I was gonna say too.

00:55:52   Like, apps I think are the biggest thing I worry about.

00:55:56   And not just like how many apps will be there on day one,

00:56:00   I think the answer to that is probably gonna be not enough.

00:56:03   Like, there's gonna be some, but probably not enough.

00:56:06   I don't even know if I,

00:56:06   I'm probably not gonna make day one with overcast update

00:56:09   because I just keep running into really annoying

00:56:12   UI issues that are, you know,

00:56:15   some of which are my fault.

00:56:17   Many of which are my fault from like, you know,

00:56:19   technical debt that I'm still repaying

00:56:21   and trying to get rid of over my previous UI hacks.

00:56:25   But some of which are just the iPhone

00:56:27   being harder to work with than I predicted

00:56:28   and the UI being harder to manage

00:56:30   than I predicted.

00:56:32   But ultimately, the biggest problem with apps is,

00:56:36   first it's gonna be when the apps get letterboxed.

00:56:39   Like I've seen a few people running simulator tricks

00:56:42   to kinda show like what apps look like

00:56:45   when they're not updated for the iPhone X,

00:56:47   when they're running on the iPhone X size screen,

00:56:49   and they just look ridiculous.

00:56:51   Like it's almost as if, they look almost like

00:56:54   when the iPad first came out and you could run iPhone apps

00:56:57   in that little tiny window like in the middle of the iPad,

00:57:00   it almost looks that ridiculous.

00:57:02   Like, they just run in this tiny little area in the middle

00:57:05   with these giant black bars that are boxing

00:57:07   the top and bottom of the phone.

00:57:09   It looks really bad.

00:57:11   And this is not just a simple recompile

00:57:14   with a bigger storyboard.

00:57:15   Like, this is a large undertaking for a lot of apps.

00:57:20   Best case scenario, even for very simply designed apps,

00:57:24   even apps that use very standard stuff

00:57:25   that make it very easy to convert,

00:57:27   even they typically have to spend, like,

00:57:29   at least a couple days on this update.

00:57:32   It's a significant change that a lot of things

00:57:36   have to do to adapt to this screen

00:57:38   because it's so different.

00:57:39   It isn't just like the same properties but bigger.

00:57:43   It's, you know, there's no more corners

00:57:46   and now the bottom is not solid

00:57:48   and you can't really put anything there

00:57:49   and you should probably take gestures away

00:57:51   from being near it.

00:57:52   And the top is giant but you can't put anything there

00:57:55   and you should take gestures away from it.

00:57:57   There's all sorts of, and when you rotate the phone,

00:58:00   if you happen to support landscape in your app,

00:58:02   you have to change something on almost every screen

00:58:05   of your app, and that may be difficult or not, depending.

00:58:09   Like if you use table views, and you use background things

00:58:12   in table views, chances are you have work to do.

00:58:15   There's so many little and big design changes

00:58:19   and technical changes your app now has to do.

00:58:22   And to give Apple credit, like the API for all the safe area

00:58:26   inset stuff is remarkably complete and remarkably useful

00:58:30   for accommodating the notch and the various insets

00:58:34   that the notch creates, especially in landscape mode.

00:58:37   Like the API is good, but we still have to use it.

00:58:39   We still have to do it and work on it and redesign things

00:58:42   and move things and test things and it's just proving

00:58:44   to be a ton of work for almost every developer

00:58:47   I've talked to about it.

00:58:49   So I would not expect many apps to be updated soon.

00:58:54   And no matter how, even if the apps you use,

00:58:58   for the most part, are by really on the ball developers

00:59:01   who are really gonna be there on day one and be ready,

00:59:04   you're still probably gonna use a number of apps

00:59:07   throughout your day to day life

00:59:09   that aren't gonna be updated for a while.

00:59:10   So you're gonna have those giant ugly black bars

00:59:12   on top and bottom for a long time.

00:59:14   Depending on what apps you use.

00:59:16   But you're gonna see this a lot for a while.

00:59:19   And it's gonna be annoying for owners of the 10

00:59:23   for a while.

00:59:25   The other thing is that I worry with the X

00:59:29   quite how much of iOS has been rooted in the idea

00:59:34   for a long time that you can always reach things

00:59:38   in the top bar of an app.

00:59:40   And to some extent the bottom bars of an app,

00:59:42   like button bars, toolbars, tab bars.

00:59:44   And with the iPhone X, it is a very different aspect ratio

00:59:50   than any other iPhone or iOS devices have ever been.

00:59:54   And it is very, very tall and skinny.

00:59:57   If you have trouble reaching the top and bottom

01:00:00   of a screen on an iPhone Plus,

01:00:03   you're definitely gonna have problems

01:00:05   reaching the top and bottom of the screen on the iPhone X.

01:00:08   And so much of iOS has been built on the assumption

01:00:12   that you can put pretty frequently used buttons and things

01:00:15   in bars on the top and bottom of the interface,

01:00:19   that even when you account for the insets from the notch

01:00:22   and from the home indicator area on the bottom,

01:00:24   things are still gonna be really hard to reach

01:00:27   for a lot of people.

01:00:29   And apps will eventually change from this.

01:00:32   Like the Plus phones encourage apps to change

01:00:35   to some degree from this, but it wasn't quite as bad

01:00:38   and you could still say, well,

01:00:40   if you have really big hands, you're buying the Plus

01:00:42   or if you don't mind using two hands, you're buying the Plus

01:00:43   but oh well, that's just because you're buying the Plus,

01:00:46   you can deal with it.

01:00:47   But now, this is going to be the mainstream power user phone

01:00:52   and also the Plus kind of already has been becoming that,

01:00:54   honestly, for about the last year, year and a half or so.

01:00:57   So apps have to totally rethink their interaction models

01:01:02   to try to minimize requiring use of the top and bottom

01:01:07   of the screen because those are gonna be way harder to reach

01:01:10   for way more people now than they were before.

01:01:13   The OS in general is gonna have to do that also.

01:01:16   iOS is going to have to change a lot of its own standards

01:01:19   and a lot of its own app designs to better accommodate this.

01:01:24   And that's all gonna take time, it's gonna take years.

01:01:27   So I think the overall bullet point here

01:01:31   of risks to the iPhone X's reception

01:01:34   and to the quality of using one for the next little while,

01:01:37   the overall heading there is apps.

01:01:40   But that's way bigger and potentially way longer

01:01:43   to get right.

01:01:44   you might find it really annoying to use apps on it

01:01:47   until things are better designed for it.

01:01:49   So that's a pretty big sticking point.

01:01:52   The only other thing I would think of is battery life.

01:01:54   The battery life is a giant question mark

01:01:56   because we've never had an OLED iPhone.

01:02:00   - But what, I've seen, you're the second person I've seen

01:02:02   worry about battery life, but I didn't list that on things

01:02:06   'cause this is the phone that they said

01:02:07   has two hours more battery life.

01:02:08   So even if they're off, it still has better battery life

01:02:11   than the 7, right?

01:02:12   What are you worried about?

01:02:13   You think it's gonna be worse than a 7?

01:02:14   - Well, the way they measure battery life is useless

01:02:16   for real world use.

01:02:17   It always has been.

01:02:19   Whatever measure they use for battery life

01:02:21   does not reflect the way anyone I know uses their phones.

01:02:23   - But proportionally, they said the seven was better

01:02:25   than the six and it was, right?

01:02:27   - It was, yes.

01:02:28   But the battery also got bigger,

01:02:31   and so it was basically roughly the same type of components

01:02:33   that we've always known, but bigger, right?

01:02:35   And so it kind of made sense that that happened.

01:02:38   It wasn't a big surprise.

01:02:39   But it depends on how they're measuring it.

01:02:40   Like if they're measuring by talk time tests,

01:02:43   a web browsing loop, things like that,

01:02:45   they optimize for that.

01:02:46   And they can design the phone to be really responsible

01:02:49   in what they consider those typical uses.

01:02:51   But then if you do something on your phone

01:02:54   that is not typical use, so for instance,

01:02:56   that crazy new processor with the six cores

01:02:59   that can now all be on at the same time if they want to,

01:03:02   if you're doing something that's processor intensive,

01:03:04   that's probably a pretty high power usage ceiling

01:03:07   that the processor can have.

01:03:08   And while they're doing whatever they're doing

01:03:10   with their battery tests,

01:03:11   they might be not sending it that way

01:03:13   or not using the processor in that way,

01:03:15   but if you do something that uses it that way,

01:03:17   you're gonna have very different results.

01:03:19   Similarly, their tests probably have,

01:03:21   they probably don't use GPS,

01:03:22   they probably don't use heavy cellular data

01:03:25   or roaming or anything else.

01:03:26   There's all sorts of things that can be different there.

01:03:28   And also just the nature of how users from an OLED screen,

01:03:32   where now the screen can,

01:03:34   not only does the screen use probably less power overall

01:03:37   when it's on, the screen uses a varying amount of power

01:03:41   based on how brightly the pixels are lit up.

01:03:43   So if you have black pixels that are effectively off

01:03:46   with an OLED, that's gonna use less power

01:03:49   than if you have white pixels that are lit up all the way.

01:03:52   That's different from the way LCDs have always worked.

01:03:55   So the way the iPhone X will use its battery

01:03:59   and the variation that you will have,

01:04:01   we don't really know the answer to that yet.

01:04:04   We're not gonna know that until we have a few months

01:04:06   of using this to really get a feel

01:04:07   for how that battery behaves.

01:04:10   And the way Apple quotes the battery time,

01:04:12   I think is almost meaningless for how that will work

01:04:15   in practice because these are all new components

01:04:17   with all new profiles of how they use power

01:04:21   that I don't think we can really say for sure

01:04:22   how it's gonna work.

01:04:23   - I don't think it's meaningless and I think the OLED screen,

01:04:26   even if it was 100% white all the time,

01:04:28   would tie or beat an LCD.

01:04:30   Like that's the point of OLED.

01:04:32   That's why it's on the watch.

01:04:33   It's lower power even if the stuff's turned on.

01:04:35   That's my impression anyway.

01:04:36   So like I said, I'm not worried about battery life.

01:04:38   I mean, if the batteries explode, that's a problem,

01:04:39   But battery life wise, even if it doesn't meet the extra two hours, I feel like it will

01:04:43   be better than the 7.

01:04:44   And as long as it's better than the 7, people will like it.

01:04:47   Because you know, it's like the fact that you're replacing your phone with a battery

01:04:49   that's gone through several charge cycles, so it's already kind of crappy, with a new

01:04:53   battery and the new battery gets more battery life, I think it'll be fine.

01:04:57   I'm optimistic about battery life.

01:04:59   To go back a step to what Marco was saying, part of the thing that worries me about app

01:05:04   support is that if nobody can get their hands on one of these in the first place, like if

01:05:08   No developers can get their hands on one of these.

01:05:10   It's only going to exacerbate this problem.

01:05:11   So it's a two-pronged issue.

01:05:14   One of them is that almost every iOS app, like Marco was

01:05:18   saying, is designed for top-based navigation.

01:05:20   Your back buttons are at the top.

01:05:22   Your create a new thing, like a new message in messages or

01:05:25   whatever, is typically at the top.

01:05:27   All of that might need to shimmy down, which is, in many

01:05:31   cases, a really, really deep and wide update.

01:05:36   That's rethinking your entire app's architecture.

01:05:38   And on top of that, if you don't have a real test device for months, I mean, we were just

01:05:44   saying we're planning on waking up at three in the morning, and we don't think that we'll

01:05:49   necessarily get our phones until 2018.

01:05:52   Like, that's going to be a big darn problem.

01:05:55   I'm optimistic.

01:05:57   I hope that it'll work out just fine.

01:05:58   I hope that I'll get my iPhone a week from Friday.

01:06:01   But you never—like, I feel like we're raining on everyone's parade, and I don't think that's

01:06:07   anyone's intention. We're hopeful that it will work out for the best. It's just, there's

01:06:12   a lot of signs. You know, the Magic 8-Ball saying this is going to be an interesting

01:06:15   roll out and it's going to be an interesting first few months with it. But let me tell

01:06:19   you, I'm still super amped in March of 2018 when I finally get my phone. I'm super amped

01:06:26   to unlock it with just my face. Like, I'm excited.

01:06:28   Yeah, and the other thing about your developer thing too is like, keep in mind, like exacerbating

01:06:34   the apps problem is that developers won't have these phones

01:06:37   for a while, as you said, which means there's immense

01:06:40   pressure on us from users and from Apple to update our apps

01:06:44   for the iPhone 10 like yesterday, like to have this,

01:06:47   needs to be done now, now, now.

01:06:49   This is immense pressure on us to update our apps

01:06:51   for a phone that will probably handle pretty differently

01:06:55   than anything that we have used before that deserves

01:07:00   significant redesign consideration

01:07:03   that we have to design for without ever holding it.

01:07:06   And sure, we can change it later,

01:07:08   but the initial batch of updates for the iPhone X

01:07:12   might not be good.

01:07:14   I would say it's gonna be really hit or miss

01:07:16   because almost all of them will have been designed

01:07:19   and developed without the designer and developer

01:07:22   having access to one.

01:07:24   So it's all gonna be just,

01:07:25   it's gonna be like the very first wave of iPad

01:07:27   and Apple Watch designs when those came out,

01:07:29   which was like really hit or miss because they were mostly developed in the simulator.

01:07:35   So somebody put out numbers, the Nikkei reporters, what is that, a newspaper website? I don't

01:07:42   even know. But anyway, this is their speculation, obviously not from Apple, but they're saying

01:07:46   20 million iPhones between now and the end of the year. And you're like, "Oh, that

01:07:50   sounds like it's a lot, right?" But last year, between October and December, Apple

01:07:55   shipped almost 80 million so that's a factor of four if these if this guess estimate from

01:08:00   you know these third party people with knowledge of the supply chain blah blah blah is right

01:08:04   they're not like we're saying there's going to be 20 fewer phones last year whatever

01:08:08   four times fewer and again maybe the eight buyers are going to help with that but i'm not sure

01:08:13   they're going to help forex so i really hope i really hope these numbers aren't right because

01:08:17   that is really grim um yeah i hear is that you know the graph of like how bad is it going to be

01:08:24   in terms of pre-order times. I also hope that the number of people who are awake at 3 a.m. exactly

01:08:32   hammering on their phones to try to order another phone is itself smaller still. Like that you're

01:08:39   what you're really getting to are the the people like this is the type of thing where I like where

01:08:42   the people who are willing to do the ridiculous thing to lose sleep to set their alarm for

01:08:48   255 to do all this stuff that there are there's a small number of them the numbers get bigger the

01:08:55   people who want to order the next morning and then bigger still for the people to the next day and so

01:08:59   on and so forth so it can be you know if you if you want the best chance to get it as soon as

01:09:05   possible then just do what we do and as many people pointed out and who have gone through

01:09:08   this before very often the barrier is not your cdn updating in marco's case where he doesn't

01:09:14   doesn't even get to see the phone on his app until it's too late or Apple store crapping

01:09:18   out which happens but at various points during the purchase process depending on what you

01:09:22   buy it may need to contact your carrier servers and the carriers suck in the US so that's

01:09:30   where your entire order process goes off the rails because their servers are unresponsive

01:09:34   and while you're trying to get through that phase where it has to contact Verizon or whatever

01:09:37   all the phones have been ordered and by the time you get through that now your you know

01:09:41   your ship date is February 21st and what can you do?

01:09:45   So one of the strategies people suggested

01:09:46   is buy the one without a SIM,

01:09:48   so you never have to contact the carrier,

01:09:50   but I don't know what chipset, to Marco's point,

01:09:53   that thing is gonna use.

01:09:54   - That does get around it.

01:09:55   The problem is it's exactly what people wanna do

01:09:57   when they're scalping them.

01:09:59   So Apple does not usually make the SIM-free version

01:10:01   available for a high-demand phone on day one.

01:10:04   They usually wait a few weeks or months

01:10:06   and then they make it available.

01:10:07   - But then the people go to the T-Mobile one,

01:10:09   You go, T-Mobile always doesn't contact their site,

01:10:11   but then you get a different chip set

01:10:12   that loses different radio bands.

01:10:14   And it's just, it's all very fraught and confusing.

01:10:17   You know, I don't know, I've never done this before,

01:10:20   so I can't say, but I'm not optimistic.

01:10:23   - Yeah, I have a feeling that because what I'm trying to do

01:10:27   is exactly what scalpers try to do,

01:10:29   I'm probably gonna have to just go to the stores a lot

01:10:32   and just try to get lucky that way.

01:10:34   - Yeah, you're using the senior citizen advantage,

01:10:38   which is like, I'm home during the day, suckers.

01:10:40   (laughing)

01:10:40   I'm gonna wander into the Apple store

01:10:42   while you're all at work,

01:10:43   and I can just come there every day and go,

01:10:44   hey, how you doing, it's me again, any handy phones?

01:10:47   - Well, the good thing is,

01:10:48   I'm now getting allergy shots twice a week

01:10:50   at a building next door to an Apple store.

01:10:53   - Twice a week, what are you curing yourself of allergies for?

01:10:56   - Allergies.

01:10:58   - Yeah, your allergies for what?

01:10:59   - Everything.

01:11:00   - Pollen, everything?

01:11:01   Dogs? - Pollen, ragweed,

01:11:02   not dogs, fortunately, but cats, bugs, rabbits,

01:11:07   mostly the pollen and the ragweed,

01:11:08   which makes pretty bad seasonal allergies.

01:11:10   But no, fortunately I have a hypoallergenic dog

01:11:13   and he's wonderful and I could put my face in him

01:11:14   and have no problems.

01:11:15   But if he was a rabbit, I would have problems

01:11:18   'cause rabbits are kind of like cats,

01:11:19   but they're constantly moving,

01:11:20   so they have a cloud of allergies around them constantly.

01:11:23   It's awful.

01:11:24   Yeah, so if I just show up early to an allergy shot

01:11:27   like twice a week, I can get to an Apple store

01:11:29   at like eight in the morning maybe, nine in the morning,

01:11:31   and you know, I'll see.

01:11:32   I'm sure it's not gonna work during the first week or two,

01:11:35   but maybe during week three.

01:11:36   You know, that's probably gonna work before my 3 a.m. order will be delivered.

01:11:41   Yeah, isn't that how I got my iPhone 7?

01:11:44   I seem to recall it was an in-person wander by thing.

01:11:48   I wasn't in a SuperHer either, but it was the same deal.

01:11:50   Jet blacks were hard to get.

01:11:51   I didn't even bother trying to get it early on.

01:11:54   And I think I did a lot of, you know, "Oh, we're in the mall.

01:11:56   Stop by the Apple Store and see what they've got."

01:11:58   I don't remember if that's where I bought it or not, but that is a very good...

01:12:01   Apple Stores do get shipments in, like, I don't know, weekly, daily.

01:12:04   Whenever they get them.

01:12:05   Daily, usually.

01:12:06   they get a small number, but if you happen to be the person who wandered into the store

01:12:11   when that small number appears, you are like in a mini line that only consists of the people

01:12:15   who happen to be in the Apple store the moment the shipment comes in. And that line is way

01:12:19   shorter than the line we're all going to be in at 3 a.m. trying to get in a big giant

01:12:23   queue with the entire world to get a phone shipped to us in February.

01:12:28   So it'll be -- it's not going to be fun. It will be fun, but no, it's not going to be

01:12:32   It's gonna be fun, it's gonna be a slog,

01:12:34   but we will eventually get this phone.

01:12:36   And you know what, all of my concerns aside,

01:12:39   ultimately I am very excited to get this phone.

01:12:41   That's why we're all waiting for it,

01:12:43   because if it's good, which Apple,

01:12:48   for all their problems with Macs recently,

01:12:51   their record with iPhones is pretty solid.

01:12:53   Like they usually don't have major issues.

01:12:55   Sometimes they have minor issues.

01:12:56   They don't usually have major issues.

01:12:58   The likelihood that this is gonna be as described

01:13:02   and gonna be good is pretty high.

01:13:05   And if that's true, this is gonna be great

01:13:08   because it'll finally be like the nice middle ground

01:13:10   between the iPhone 7 and the iPhone Plus

01:13:14   that we've been waiting for for so long.

01:13:17   And to have like the best cameras in the quote,

01:13:21   medium-sized phone, even though it's not quite,

01:13:24   but to have that would be great,

01:13:26   to have a bigger screen and a smaller body will be great.

01:13:29   There are a lot of asterisks on this,

01:13:30   a lot of things we're having to give up to get this,

01:13:34   but if it works out, it's gonna be awesome.

01:13:38   So I am, I'm tentatively optimistic.

01:13:42   I think it's probably gonna end up being great.

01:13:44   We're probably gonna look back on all these worries

01:13:46   and laugh at how ridiculous they were,

01:13:48   and I hope it turns out that way.

01:13:50   - I hope so, but I think what's gonna end up happening

01:13:54   is I'll get my phone in December or January

01:13:57   and you will get yours in about a week

01:13:59   by going to the store every single day.

01:14:02   - Yeah. - That's my wager.

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01:16:01   (upbeat music)

01:16:04   - So, speaking of things that are,

01:16:08   that are positive, eh, maybe,

01:16:12   apparently the Mac Mini's still a thing.

01:16:14   - Uh. - Kinda, maybe.

01:16:17   - Here's the thing.

01:16:17   So, do you have the Tim Cook statement handy?

01:16:20   - Yeah, 22/7. - Doesn't matter,

01:16:22   we all know what he said.

01:16:23   - Can you read the statement, just for the record?

01:16:26   - I'm glad you love Mac Mini.

01:16:28   Why is it never the Mac Mini?

01:16:30   - That's a Steve Caray over, I think.

01:16:31   - I know, it just drives me bad.

01:16:33   - And for context listeners, this was a neat,

01:16:34   so somebody emailed Tim Cook asking about the future

01:16:38   of the Mac Mini and got this response that allegedly,

01:16:40   and then it was posted to Mac commercial.

01:16:42   So, what was that?

01:16:43   Go on, sorry.

01:16:44   - So, I'm glad you love Mac Mini.

01:16:46   We love it too.

01:16:47   Our customers have found so many creative

01:16:49   and interesting uses for Mac Mini.

01:16:51   While it is not the time to share any details,

01:16:54   we do plan for Mac Mini to be an important part

01:16:56   of our product line going forward.

01:16:59   Best, Tim.

01:17:00   - Yeah, so all the websites took this to mean

01:17:05   Tim Cook confirms that Mac Mini's not dead,

01:17:07   that they're working on a new one.

01:17:10   When I read this, I was less optimistic,

01:17:13   or at least I found this to be relatively content-free.

01:17:17   Almost all of the words that Tim wrote back allegedly

01:17:20   don't mean anything, our non-committal PR CEO speak BS,

01:17:24   and the few words that mean something were so vague

01:17:31   and so non-committal that what he could mean is,

01:17:35   we're just gonna keep selling it like it is now.

01:17:40   Like, that's all he really said.

01:17:43   It's still a thing in the line.

01:17:46   Like, when they gave that wonderful statement

01:17:49   the Mac Pro Roundtable last spring,

01:17:51   where it was something on the lines of,

01:17:52   "That Mac Mini remains a product in our lineup."

01:17:54   It was one of the best things I've ever said.

01:17:56   (laughs)

01:17:57   Like, this is about the same.

01:18:00   I don't think this is saying anything about future updates.

01:18:05   - I think you're bending yourself into pretzels

01:18:07   to try to make it seem like the same.

01:18:09   It's not the same.

01:18:10   They said, "Not time to share any details."

01:18:13   If it was gonna be the same, there's no details to share.

01:18:16   Not that there's much information in it,

01:18:17   but the one piece of information is an official confirmation

01:18:20   from the CEO of Apple that they plan to share some details

01:18:25   related to the Mac Mini in the future,

01:18:28   which means, as far as I'm concerned,

01:18:30   if this was the Mac Pro, what we'd be saying is,

01:18:32   this is confirmation the Mac Pro is not dead.

01:18:34   He might as well have said,

01:18:36   we're gonna come out with a new thing

01:18:40   that people who like the Mac Mini will like.

01:18:42   He didn't even say it was gonna be a new Mac Mini.

01:18:43   Who knows what it could be?

01:18:44   And I think we would wanna discuss that.

01:18:45   But the whole point is that like,

01:18:47   that they, there's not like,

01:18:49   they're just not gonna fade away.

01:18:50   We're not making the Mac Mini anymore.

01:18:52   So we're gonna sell this one

01:18:53   until it becomes really embarrassing,

01:18:55   and then we'll stop,

01:18:56   like they were planning on doing with the Mac Pro.

01:18:57   Sell it until it becomes embarrassing,

01:18:59   and then just let it fade away,

01:19:00   and replace it with the iMac Pro or whatever.

01:19:02   That was the plan for the Mac Pro until they turned around.

01:19:04   This email does not have much content,

01:19:07   but the one bit of information it has is,

01:19:09   does the Mac Mini have a future yes/no answer?

01:19:12   Yes-ish.

01:19:14   Like, again, they don't say it's going to be a Mac Mini,

01:19:16   but the person was asking about the Mac Mini,

01:19:19   and his answer is, just wait, we'll have something.

01:19:23   And so I think at least Tim believes

01:19:25   that the person who likes the Mac Mini

01:19:28   will be interested in this future thing.

01:19:29   So it's gotta be something Mac Mini-ish.

01:19:33   And that's not a lot of information.

01:19:34   Like, what do you expect?

01:19:35   Like, it's not gonna tell you a date,

01:19:36   and yes, we're gonna have the Mac Mini,

01:19:38   or yes, we're gonna replace it, like whatever.

01:19:40   But it's more than we had before.

01:19:42   It's from the horse's mouth.

01:19:44   And so I take that, if I was a big fan of the Mac Mini,

01:19:46   I would be excited now to know that that computer line

01:19:49   is not 100% dead.

01:19:52   - There's two parts of Tim's wording here

01:19:54   that actually mean anything at all.

01:19:56   Wow does not time to share any details.

01:19:58   This implies there will be a time in the future

01:20:01   where something is shared.

01:20:02   - So not a time in the past,

01:20:04   space doesn't have a time machine.

01:20:05   It will have to be a time in the future

01:20:06   and he will share details.

01:20:07   Details about what?

01:20:08   It's details that this person who sent his email

01:20:10   apparently would be interested in.

01:20:11   This person wants a Mac Mini.

01:20:12   - Right, so what that clause means is

01:20:15   there may come a time in the future

01:20:18   where there's something to share.

01:20:20   The only other part of this that says anything is important.

01:20:25   We do plan for the Mac Mini to be an important part

01:20:28   of our product line going forward,

01:20:29   but the problem with that, when a CEO says important,

01:20:33   it's like your call is important to us.

01:20:36   Like that is complete BS, they do not mean it,

01:20:39   they're saying that to please you,

01:20:41   That doesn't mean anything.

01:20:42   When you remove the BS speak from this,

01:20:46   all it really says is, we plan for the Mac Mini

01:20:49   to be part of our product line in the future, going forward.

01:20:52   Like, that's it, that's all it says.

01:20:53   - Yeah, but like I said, don't have anything to share

01:20:55   right now, we will have something to share later.

01:20:57   And if the product doesn't change, there's nothing to share.

01:20:59   If there's something to share, that means there's news.

01:21:01   That means there's news that Mac Mini owners want

01:21:03   and the obvious news is there's gonna be a new Mac Mini.

01:21:06   - Well, so basically I think part one of my skepticism

01:21:11   on this is I don't think this email says anything real.

01:21:15   I think this is 100% fluff and nothing,

01:21:19   there's no meat to it.

01:21:20   - I completely agree.

01:21:21   - But it's not 100%, it's 1% a promise

01:21:25   that the Mac Mini is not dead as a line of computers.

01:21:27   - Yeah, but if you're Tim Cook,

01:21:28   you're not gonna make that declaration

01:21:30   in an email to some rando, you're gonna make it--

01:21:32   - Yeah, sure you will.

01:21:33   - Oh, come on. - I think that is

01:21:34   the minimum amount that you can,

01:21:36   because there's nothing else he can say,

01:21:39   He can't just say what Phil said, which is "It remains a product in our lineup."

01:21:42   Because that will be taken, like if you're answering at all, if you answer with that,

01:21:45   that's taken as a confirmation that it's dead.

01:21:47   Because if he can't bring himself to say, "Patented Tim Cook, just stay tuned, we're

01:21:52   really excited about blah blah blah future blah blah blah, nothing to share today," like

01:21:55   he does that all the time, that's his little shtick.

01:21:58   If he can't bring himself to say that, and he actually replies and says "It remains a

01:22:02   product in our lineup," that means it's dead.

01:22:04   So he has to either not reply, which would be the smart thing to do, or reply and say,

01:22:10   "No, it's not dead.

01:22:11   We're going to do a thing."

01:22:13   And he gives his little answer about nothing to share today.

01:22:17   That means there'll be something to share.

01:22:19   And that is, you could say 90% BS and 90% content free, but that one little nugget,

01:22:24   like I said, if I was a big Mac mini fan, that would make me very excited because I

01:22:27   feel like it is unambiguous.

01:22:28   Unambiguous that Tim Cook thinks, in the same way, by the way, that they would have said,

01:22:33   We have Mac Pro users, we have something you'll be excited about, and they meant the iMac Pro.

01:22:37   And so you can still be disappointed, but like, "Oh, I was hoping they would keep the

01:22:40   Mac Pro, but it turns out the thing they thought we would be excited about is the iMac Pro."

01:22:44   And we would kind of be excited about it, but it would still be not as good as a real

01:22:47   Mac Pro.

01:22:48   Right, so there's still room for Mac Mini owners to be disappointed, but that's their lot in

01:22:52   life, right?

01:22:53   Isn't that what they're there for?

01:22:54   Yeah, it's always been a disappointing product in some way.

01:22:57   But okay, so anyway, I think it's not that bad.

01:23:01   Part one of my disappointment with this was Tim's fluffy language. When Tim says things

01:23:06   or does interviews I don't even watch them or care because there's so little content.

01:23:10   He's so guarded, he's so careful that you see no personality, you get no real ideas

01:23:15   of anything. Anyway, so I wouldn't put anything into his words. The other thing to worry about

01:23:21   is do we want today's Apple redesigning the Mac Mini? Because when they last did it in

01:23:30   In 2014, they basically took the 2012 model

01:23:35   and made it worse.

01:23:37   What would they do if today's Apple redesigned the Mac Mini?

01:23:40   'Cause what everyone wants is one thing.

01:23:43   What everyone wants is, yeah, maybe bring back

01:23:45   the quad core option that it used to have,

01:23:47   maybe bring back the user replaceable,

01:23:50   upgradeable hard drive and socketed RAM,

01:23:52   like things like that would be great

01:23:54   because this is a machine that appeals to low end

01:23:58   and budget conscious buyers more than their other machines.

01:24:01   So that matters, the upgradeability and repairability

01:24:04   over time, that matters more on this machine

01:24:06   than on probably any of their other machines

01:24:09   and they made it worse substantially in the 2012 update.

01:24:13   So when people say we want an updated Mac Mini,

01:24:17   I think number one, what they want is upgraded components,

01:24:19   that would be nice to have modern processors and everything

01:24:21   but I think they're also thinking of some kind of redesign

01:24:24   and everyone has their idea of what they want it to be.

01:24:27   Mac Mini users, use them as their primary computers,

01:24:29   generally want upgradability.

01:24:32   Apple commentators, there was a great segment

01:24:35   on upgrade this week, where Jason Stiller

01:24:37   argues that it should be more like the Intel NUC,

01:24:39   the N-U-C, however that's pronounced,

01:24:40   where it's like the size of an Apple TV.

01:24:42   So it's like, take the Mac Mini and make it even smaller,

01:24:44   make it have even less components and upgradability inside,

01:24:48   even fewer ports, things like that.

01:24:51   I honestly don't think Mac Mini owners are looking for that.

01:24:54   But I think if Apple did redesign the Mac Mini today,

01:24:56   it would be more like that.

01:24:58   It would be like, let's make it even smaller,

01:25:00   let's give it all USB-C ports,

01:25:02   like take away all the usefulness of it,

01:25:04   keep the same high price,

01:25:05   maybe even increase the price with today's Apple,

01:25:07   and now you have less upgradeability than even before

01:25:10   in the 2014 revision.

01:25:13   Like, do you think today's Apple would actually

01:25:16   issue an update to the Mac Mini

01:25:18   that Mac Mini buyers would be happy with?

01:25:20   I think it's very unlikely.

01:25:22   - I think you're kind of dancing around this article

01:25:24   that you haven't read in the show notes,

01:25:25   which is by Ricardo Mori, who offers three-- he categorizes three possibilities for the

01:25:32   future of the Mac Mini or things that the Mac Mini people might like.

01:25:36   And you already covered two of them, but just to cover what was the link in the show, I

01:25:39   was to read this article, which is longer.

01:25:41   The first option is, it's the same Mac Mini you see today, but it has upgraded internals,

01:25:45   which is like the minimum they could do, right?

01:25:48   Better CPUs, GPUs, faster SSD, like all the things you expect.

01:25:53   know USB C ports on the back but like but otherwise it's the same and probably

01:25:57   a price bump because why not right second option is the Apple TV size Mac

01:26:02   Mini right it's it's smaller it's you know like as a lower power stuff in

01:26:10   there in both senses but it's like the size of a hockey puck so a whole new

01:26:13   realm of things becomes possible like the Intel NUC like the Apple TV you know

01:26:18   that's the second option and the third option which you didn't mention because

01:26:22   you know, I think this is probably the least likely, is that it's basically the

01:26:28   X Mac or the poor man's Mac Pro. It is a small modular computer but that it goes

01:26:33   like upmarket in terms of power. Like what if you don't want an iMac because

01:26:40   you don't want screen but you also don't want a bazillion dollar Mac Pro. You want

01:26:44   a desktop Mac that is nevertheless configurable and you can put some

01:26:47   powerful stuff in it and you don't have to say it's upgradeable. Maybe it's not

01:26:50   upgradeable at all. Maybe this is total, you know, but it is like faster. Like it's actually

01:26:54   got some fast processors in it and a fast SSD. It's like a little mini speed demo. Again,

01:26:58   this is the least option. All of these are small computers. They're small computers that

01:27:03   do not have a screen. It's not a laptop, but they're like, it's like three sizes. You know,

01:27:07   you got the current size, which I think is actually kind of gross. It's like, you know,

01:27:11   flat and wide. I kind of, not that I like the taller, skinnier one, but I don't like

01:27:15   things to get wider. Like I think that limits usefulness. But anyway, you got that form

01:27:19   factor you've got the hockey puck and then presumably the the x-mac or the poor man's mac pro

01:27:24   would be bigger still than the current one and these three options are not equally likely in my

01:27:31   you know like you said about the puck like who really wants that and it's extremely limiting

01:27:35   um the the x-mac or poor man's mac pro it's just not going to happen like give up you know that's

01:27:42   why the x-mac will never you know that's something that enthusiasts want they don't want and so that

01:27:47   leaves the first one where it is a new Mac Mini with updated internals and maybe it changes size in some small way because they

01:27:53   Can make it smaller now, but it's not hockey puck size

01:27:55   You know like and I guess there's you know fourth option or whatever that it's just something entirely crazy like that's by the way

01:28:05   The Mac Mini and the Mac Pro both

01:28:07   Seem to induce this in people where they start to get the idea like what if it was like a bunch of Mac Minis you

01:28:12   could combine them and they would combine forces like Voltron and

01:28:15   You know use some sort of magic technology to distribute computing across them

01:28:20   And if you just added more Mac minis it would get faster and all sorts of fantasy scenarios

01:28:24   They're like this is not this is not the 90s

01:28:27   This is not the Apple that made the duo doc like that's not gonna happen. This is not their

01:28:32   important product you could technically do some of these things but

01:28:36   You know not the Mac mini it gets is the least investment of any Mac

01:28:40   So you should just hope that they update it that the price is not too obscene and that it is good to go for another

01:28:47   Three years, and I think that's the best you can hope for and I think that's what's gonna happen

01:28:49   Yeah, I think it's it's kind of sad though that we the option that we think is the most likely is

01:28:56   Also, probably what the fewest Mac mini customers are asking for or want you think so I do

01:29:02   I mean like so so, you know the the most likely one obviously is the one where they make it even smaller and remove even

01:29:08   more from it.

01:29:08   - Oh, no, no, I think the most likely one

01:29:10   is to just update the internals.

01:29:11   They can still make it smaller,

01:29:12   but it's not gonna be Puck.

01:29:13   I don't think the Puck is the most likely one at all.

01:29:15   I think it's still a silver box.

01:29:17   It just has different ports and different internals.

01:29:19   I think that's the most likely.

01:29:21   - So based on what Modern Apple would do

01:29:26   and what Modern Apple should do,

01:29:29   I think making it better,

01:29:31   making it more powerful, more expandable, more upgradable,

01:29:37   That's not gonna happen.

01:29:38   I think the best we can hope for is that they keep it

01:29:40   the same and just update the guts.

01:29:42   So, and it's really telling to consider,

01:29:46   that is, that's what we're hoping for here is like,

01:29:50   please Apple, don't touch it too much.

01:29:52   Like, please like touch it a little bit,

01:29:54   like give us upgrade, upgrading opponents,

01:29:56   but like, I feel like, you know, going back to my argument,

01:30:00   I think last year or the one before about Apple

01:30:02   lacking confidence in its design,

01:30:05   it seems like Apple refuses to update a product

01:30:09   where it's just a spec bump a lot of the time.

01:30:14   The Mac Pro famously was never updated

01:30:16   after it was released.

01:30:17   The laptops before that had wide, long spans

01:30:20   where they could have upgraded CPUs, but they didn't.

01:30:23   The Mac Mini is the clearest example yet of that now

01:30:27   in the current lineup, because I consider the Mac Pro

01:30:30   not in the current lineup, even though it's typically

01:30:32   for sale.

01:30:33   Anyway, I think Apple needs to get over this insecurity

01:30:38   or this roadblock they have in their head

01:30:39   that every update has to be some kind of new

01:30:43   external design or mind-blowing thing

01:30:45   because that is important for some of their products.

01:30:48   I'd say the iPhone is the biggest example

01:30:50   where the market really values that.

01:30:52   But there are a lot of products they sell

01:30:54   where the market doesn't really care about that so much

01:30:56   and if the alternative to having a fancy new

01:31:02   external design on a regular basis is never getting

01:31:05   an update of any kind, then Apple needs to really

01:31:09   consider what that says about them and what kind

01:31:12   of computer company they wanna be.

01:31:14   If they still wanna be a computer company,

01:31:15   please, for the love of God, please, I mean, geez.

01:31:18   That's a valid question these days.

01:31:20   But it is totally fine for the Mac Mini to get updates

01:31:25   where the external design does not change.

01:31:29   And Apple should be confident enough to be able to update it

01:31:34   without saying, well, we can't do anything big,

01:31:38   so we should just wait until we can.

01:31:40   'Cause that's not how computers work.

01:31:42   Like, that's not how people buy computers.

01:31:44   That's not what anybody wants.

01:31:47   - Didn't they just do two updates

01:31:48   to the Mac Mini like that, though?

01:31:49   The last two updates have been form factor doesn't change,

01:31:52   internals get quote unquote better.

01:31:54   The first, the 2012 one is they didn't get better.

01:31:56   So I feel like the Mac Mini,

01:31:58   if only because they don't want to spend the money to design and do new tooling for a new thing.

01:32:02   And to be clear, I think it is entirely possible the Mac Mini will get smaller. I'm just saying

01:32:07   it's not going to become something the size of the Apple TV. Like, it's not going to become super

01:32:11   duper small, because to do that you would have to really cut the power on it. Like, it would have to

01:32:16   get way slower than it is. You can't, or maybe it wouldn't, maybe you could say the same speed as the

01:32:20   three-year-old's computer. But the whole point is people want a bump because they want a Mac Mini

01:32:24   that is more capable than the current one.

01:32:26   And if you just say, "Okay, well, how about if it's the same speeder, it's the size of

01:32:29   a hockey puck?"

01:32:30   I think they can make it smaller, maybe not make it so darn wide and have a smaller case,

01:32:36   but it should be faster than the current one.

01:32:37   If they introduce a new Mac money that is not faster than the old one, that is definitely

01:32:42   not what anybody wants.

01:32:43   They already did it once.

01:32:44   Yeah, I know, I know.

01:32:45   That was the core account thing and then nobody liked that update and stuff, but the one after

01:32:50   that actually did get faster.

01:32:51   You know, like...

01:32:52   No, no, no.

01:32:53   I have the one that got slower

01:32:55   The 2012 one wasn't the one where they cut the four core option 2012 was was the good one

01:33:00   They killed the four core option in the current lineup, which is 2014. Yeah. All right. Well anyway, I

01:33:06   That's what people want because why are you not satisfied with the current Mac Mini?

01:33:10   It's super expensive and when you get for that money doesn't run Mac OS that well because it's old and slow

01:33:15   So give me a new Mac Mini and if we say new Mac Mini same speed as your old one

01:33:20   but the size of a hockey puck, you're like, that's not what I wanted.

01:33:22   Right? It's not, that doesn't help me.

01:33:25   I would just like, I would just keep using this one.

01:33:27   So I agree that it will not be an X Mac, but I think it's also not going to be a puck.

01:33:32   I think it will be a Mac mini, either the same size as the current case or smaller,

01:33:37   but not puck size, and it has to be.

01:33:40   It has to be faster.

01:33:41   How could it not be faster?

01:33:42   Just three-year-old guts in there.

01:33:43   Probably older.

01:33:44   It has to be faster.

01:33:45   So Tim Cook didn't say that in his email, but maybe I'll email him later and say, hey,

01:33:49   "Hey Tim, the Mac Mini, it's gonna be faster, right?"

01:33:52   And he'll send me one reply that says yes.

01:33:54   - Yeah, no, are you kidding?

01:33:56   He can't say one word.

01:33:57   He'll give you three sentences that say nothing.

01:33:59   It is also worth looking back at what the role

01:34:02   the Mac Mini was supposed to be in the first place.

01:34:03   When it was first launched, what about 12 years ago,

01:34:06   something like that?

01:34:07   What was the role back then?

01:34:09   At the time, it was basically the Mac for new switchers

01:34:13   to the Mac platform.

01:34:15   And it was a way that if the rest of the Macs

01:34:18   for too expensive for your budget or for your needs,

01:34:22   then here's a way you could get a Mac for less money,

01:34:25   you supply your own, you know, whatever display

01:34:28   and keyboard and mouse you already have

01:34:30   or you can get cheaply from other people,

01:34:32   you bring that, we'll give you the box.

01:34:34   And that can be your Mac for a lot less money

01:34:37   than our big towers or our laptops.

01:34:39   I think if modern Apple still viewed the Mac

01:34:42   as a business that had potential growth in it,

01:34:45   which is a big question mark, I think,

01:34:47   which is unfortunate because I think there's tons

01:34:49   of growth to be had because for all the press narrative

01:34:54   that phones and everything are killing computers,

01:34:57   we all keep using computers and we all keep buying them.

01:35:00   And while the PC market on the whole

01:35:03   is not growing very well anymore,

01:35:05   and in some cases it's not growing at all anymore,

01:35:07   Apple doesn't have a very big share of it

01:35:09   and their share can grow.

01:35:11   So there's tons of growth to be had if they wanted it.

01:35:14   But I think it's worth revisiting that original purpose

01:35:16   the Mac Mini, which is to attract new people

01:35:18   to the Mac platform who otherwise won't or can't

01:35:21   buy the other options.

01:35:24   And if Apple really wanted to do that,

01:35:26   I think they've always had this tension with the Mac Mini

01:35:29   that they probably don't want to cannibalize sales

01:35:32   of the higher end Macs, because one thing

01:35:35   a lot of people don't talk about in the Apple comment-osphere

01:35:39   is that when you look at what Apple actually sells,

01:35:42   the volumes they actually sell,

01:35:45   The computers they sell ridiculously high volumes in

01:35:49   are the lowest and cheapest configurations

01:35:52   of each type of product.

01:35:53   They sell a ton of the cheapest iMac

01:35:57   and the cheapest MacBook.

01:35:58   Which for a while has been MacBook Air,

01:36:01   before that it was the MD101,

01:36:03   like the famous non-retina 13 inch MacBook Pro.

01:36:07   Apple sells massive quantities of those

01:36:12   to businesses, schools, things like that.

01:36:16   And so they have to make sure that whatever is

01:36:18   the cheapest thing in a category,

01:36:21   that it is both okay for Apple that they sell a lot of those

01:36:25   instead of anything else,

01:36:27   and that it is a reasonable computer.

01:36:29   I think they clearly want people to buy the low-end iMacs

01:36:34   and not the low-end Mac Minis as the cheap desktop.

01:36:39   The reality though is that laptops outsell

01:36:42   desktops so much these days.

01:36:44   That was not as true back when they first

01:36:46   launched the Mac Mini.

01:36:47   Laptops are now the computers that almost everybody wants.

01:36:51   So if you're gonna still have a desktop

01:36:54   whose sole purpose is to sweep up the rest

01:36:58   of the edges of the market, you know,

01:37:00   as Jason Snell said this week on Upgrade,

01:37:01   like it's kinda like the catch all.

01:37:02   It's like it catches a lot of edge case needs

01:37:06   that other Macs might be impractical or unusable for.

01:37:10   Like people run server farms on Mac Minis.

01:37:12   There's so many cool uses that you have,

01:37:15   home servers, stuff like that,

01:37:16   headless things, cheap things, portable things.

01:37:18   There's so many things you can do with a Mac Mini

01:37:20   where an iMac would be impractical

01:37:23   or just not really work for that purpose

01:37:24   or a laptop wouldn't really work.

01:37:26   So the Mac Mini is an important part of the lineup

01:37:31   where it's actually true.

01:37:33   The question I think is,

01:37:35   Is it worth expanding what that means now?

01:37:38   Because in today's environment,

01:37:40   which is very different from when the Mac Mini

01:37:42   was first conceived and introduced,

01:37:44   if they actually had a compelling, inexpensive,

01:37:49   little desktop thing that you could put

01:37:53   a standard two and a half inch hard drive in

01:37:55   if you wanted to for expansion,

01:37:57   or things like that, like things that would make it

01:37:59   appeal more to low end and customized buyers,

01:38:04   they could, I think, really increase the appeal of Mac OS

01:38:08   for a certain category of people

01:38:11   without, I don't think,

01:38:11   really cannibalizing meaningful portions of Mac sales.

01:38:15   Because if they introduce a desktop

01:38:17   that cannibalizes sales of the lowest end cheapest iMac,

01:38:21   I don't think that's a big problem for them.

01:38:23   Especially 'cause the Mac Mini,

01:38:24   it's still not gonna be that cheap.

01:38:25   Like, it's still not gonna be a great value,

01:38:27   'cause it never has been.

01:38:29   So from that angle, I think it's okay.

01:38:31   And the reality is most low-end buyers,

01:38:34   these days buy laptops anyway.

01:38:37   So I don't think they have to worry so much

01:38:39   about low-end cannibalization anymore, as they used to.

01:38:43   And so what this product could instead do

01:38:45   is be a market expander, basically.

01:38:49   Expand the market share of Mac OS,

01:38:52   of people using real Macs instead of Hackintoshes,

01:38:55   who want their own desktop,

01:38:57   who don't wanna pay iMac prices,

01:39:00   who want to put like two terabytes in it

01:39:02   with a standard drive in some way.

01:39:03   Like, things like that, like,

01:39:05   this could be a market expander for them

01:39:08   in a way that would detract from their core profitable

01:39:10   markets almost not at all, if they wanted it to be.

01:39:14   But I don't, it doesn't seem like Apple views the Mac

01:39:17   as a growth market anymore, but I think that's totally wrong.

01:39:20   - I feel like you're getting into X-Maxx territory

01:39:22   when you keep talking about the idea that it's gonna have

01:39:24   a 2.5 inch bay somewhere in this computer, like,

01:39:27   - It did until 2012, or no, it did until 2014.

01:39:31   - No, that seems very unlikely to me.

01:39:33   They love the PCI based little stick SSDs.

01:39:37   - You can still, there is still space

01:39:40   in the case design for one.

01:39:42   And I think you can still order them with Fusion drives.

01:39:45   So like you could have a stick and a bay in there.

01:39:49   But if you didn't order it with a Fusion drive,

01:39:52   then the hardware to mount the drive isn't there.

01:39:54   So mine is SSD only and I wanted to expand it

01:39:58   'cause it's only 256 and I can't.

01:40:00   Like I just can't, there's no hardware in there

01:40:02   to support anything.

01:40:03   So I have to just do external stuff if I want to expand it.

01:40:05   - So we don't, Apple hasn't broken out iPad Mini sales

01:40:08   in forever if they ever did.

01:40:09   So we don't really know what the numbers are,

01:40:10   but I bet they're super small.

01:40:12   And what you're describing would be a cool thing,

01:40:14   but I think it falls under the same category

01:40:17   as the Mac Pro is in.

01:40:18   They would have had to have a special announcement about that.

01:40:20   Like it's getting into X-Mac territory.

01:40:22   We're saying, we're gonna reimagine the Mac Mini.

01:40:24   And it is gonna fulfill a different role,

01:40:28   and that role is exactly what you just described, Marco,

01:40:30   but it would have to be a very different product.

01:40:32   It would have to basically be a miniature Mac Pro

01:40:35   designed to be modular and configurable,

01:40:38   to be able to spec it up and down,

01:40:41   to get a really cheap low-end one,

01:40:42   but also a really fast high-end one

01:40:45   in a similar form factor and be upgradeable

01:40:47   and fulfill all those roles that you just described

01:40:49   for a different kind of person.

01:40:51   Like there's the iMac would be the,

01:40:52   I don't wanna worry about it.

01:40:54   I don't wanna have any boxes or cables.

01:40:55   It's all in one.

01:40:56   So I'll get the low end iMac, right?

01:40:58   And I'll just, it's all in one box

01:41:00   and I get a nice screen and a nice computer

01:41:01   and it's all there.

01:41:02   And then the other end is,

01:41:04   I want a computer that is configurable and upgradeable

01:41:07   and potentially can be cheaper than the iMac.

01:41:10   I've already have a monitor,

01:41:11   but also can be more expensive if I wanna crank it up

01:41:14   and try to get something faster.

01:41:15   And that's into the X max territory.

01:41:17   But so far, we don't know anything about this,

01:41:19   but it's still, those are,

01:41:21   it still seems just much more likely

01:41:22   that it will continue to be what it is,

01:41:24   which is like the cheapest way to get into a Mac

01:41:29   as long as you don't need to look at a screen, right?

01:41:31   It's like, you already have a screen

01:41:33   and a keyboard and a mouse,

01:41:34   you can probably spec a Mac mini

01:41:36   so that it's cheaper than Apple's cheapest laptop,

01:41:38   which may not be true for much longer,

01:41:39   given how the Mac mini prices keep going up

01:41:42   and that Apple continues to keep around

01:41:44   low-end cheap laptops.

01:41:46   Like what is the, you know, the 13-inch Air

01:41:48   with that terrible screen?

01:41:48   Is that below $900 yet?

01:41:51   - It's around there.

01:41:52   Yeah, so, yeah, it would be nice if that trend reversed

01:41:57   and you could actually get a cheaper Mac Mini.

01:41:58   But I'm not really into the Mac Mini,

01:42:01   but I feel for people who use them in various roles.

01:42:06   And it's one of those products

01:42:07   where it probably doesn't make them money.

01:42:09   Like they probably don't sell enough of them

01:42:10   to recoup the cost of development of the new case

01:42:13   that they're gonna design

01:42:14   if they do design a new case or whatever.

01:42:16   But it keeps enough of the right people happy,

01:42:21   the people who are enthusiasts, who will spread the word of Apple and be satisfied to be in

01:42:28   an all-Apple ecosystem because they can make their music server be a Mac Mini or they can

01:42:32   use it in some little situation that tickles their nerd hearts, right?

01:42:37   There is value in that beyond the value of how much money do we make on selling them

01:42:41   because I really think that they sell very, very, very, very, very few Mac Minis.

01:42:45   Like the Mac Pro, it's kind of a self-fulfilling prophecy.

01:42:48   you don't update for three years and increase the price and make it slower, yada yada yada.

01:42:51   But I'm personally less angry about it, so I'm just willing to be patient here. But like

01:42:55   I said, I'm excited that there's going to be details that will be shared in the future.

01:43:01   Supposedly. I still am very skeptical that that's anything.

01:43:07   I think the problem with the Mac Mini is that it tries to be all three different computers

01:43:15   at once, right? Or at least two. I know a lot of people that love to have them as a

01:43:21   entertainment computer. And I know that with the Apple TV and other boxes like it, that's

01:43:26   less important now. But I know people that, you know, have a Mac Mini connected to a TV,

01:43:30   and that's that's how they prefer to manage their media. So that's one kind of Mac Mini.

01:43:35   Another kind of Mac Mini is the sort that Marco, I think uses, wherein it's just a very,

01:43:40   very cheap in-home Mac-based server. And that's also oftentimes used at development shops

01:43:45   like mine. We for a long time used a Mac mini as a continuous integration platform, which

01:43:51   is something that Marco does not understand. Then there's also...

01:43:55   Put it in the parking lot.

01:43:56   Yeah, we'll put it in the parking lot and talk about it.

01:43:58   We'll have a strummerful about it tomorrow morning.

01:43:59   Yeah, that sounds perfect. And then finally, there's the one that it sounds like Marco's

01:44:05   most interested in, unsurprisingly, which is the cheap but expandable and flexible Mac.

01:44:14   Something that's kind of sort of like the MacBook Air that Jon had just brought up,

01:44:19   but desktop-y, you know, where you can expand it potentially, and you can bring your own

01:44:24   keyboard and mouse and monitor and so on and so forth.

01:44:28   And I think the problem is that no matter what Apple does, shy of making three different

01:44:32   machines, there will be one or more groups that will be displeased by the results.

01:44:39   And I don't envy them in that regard.

01:44:41   And yes, to a large degree, this is a self-created problem, just like John said and Marco said

01:44:45   about how, you know, you didn't update it for three years, and the updates you did before

01:44:49   that were crap.

01:44:50   So this is the bed they've chosen to sleep in, but it's a crummy situation and I don't

01:44:56   know how to dig yourself out of it outside of making a few different machines.

01:45:01   It's not gonna matter though,

01:45:01   'cause our iPhone 10s will be quicker anyway.

01:45:04   - Yeah, it's probably well.

01:45:06   - 100% guaranteed.

01:45:08   Unless they did the X Mac, which they're not.

01:45:11   - All right, thanks for our sponsors this week.

01:45:12   Squarespace, Fracture, and Aftershocks.

01:45:15   And we will see you next week.

01:45:17   (upbeat music)

01:45:20   ♪ Now the show is over ♪

01:45:22   ♪ They didn't even mean to begin ♪

01:45:25   ♪ 'Cause it was accidental ♪

01:45:26   ♪ Accidental ♪

01:45:27   ♪ Oh, it was accidental ♪

01:45:29   ♪ Accidental ♪

01:45:30   John didn't do any research, Marco and Casey wouldn't let him

01:45:35   'Cause it was accidental (it was accidental)

01:45:38   It was accidental (it was accidental)

01:45:41   And you can find the show notes at ATP.fm

01:45:46   And if you're into Twitter, you can follow them

01:45:51   @c-a-s-e-y-l-i-s-s

01:45:55   So that's Casey List M-a-r-c-o-a-r-m

01:45:59   ♫ Anti-Marco Armin, S-I-R-A-C

01:46:04   ♫ USA, Syracuse, it's accidental

01:46:08   ♫ It's accidental

01:46:10   ♫ They didn't mean to, accidental

01:46:14   ♫ Accidental

01:46:15   ♫ Tech broadcast so long

01:46:18   (engine revving)

01:46:28   Sound of Italian power.

01:46:30   Is that what that is?

01:46:31   Mm-hmm.

01:46:32   I don't know what your BMW sounds like, plus your BMW's in the shop.

01:46:35   I don't think you'd want to rev it like that.

01:46:37   Probably blow up the valve train again.

01:46:43   That is true.

01:46:44   Sounds like some kind of dinosaurs exploding in sequence and possibly eight sequences.

01:46:51   It is not eight sequences.

01:46:55   It is six sequences.

01:46:56   It's a V6 in the Giulia.

01:46:58   It is a V6 in the Giulia.

01:47:01   And that is what you just heard.

01:47:02   I recorded that last night.

01:47:05   Sounds good.

01:47:06   So my alpha has arrived.

01:47:07   I am back to being a car journalist, ladies and gentlemen, and I am excited.

01:47:11   Wait, did you like glue a camera to the back of your car?

01:47:14   How'd you get this?

01:47:15   It's a GoPro.

01:47:16   Oh, okay.

01:47:17   With a suction cup.

01:47:18   You're a vlogger now.

01:47:19   I know, right?

01:47:21   Work has a GoPro, what is this thing?

01:47:23   It is a Hero 3 Plus.

01:47:28   And anyway, and I bought literally an $8 suction cup mount.

01:47:32   You know, quick aside, this is not why I'm bringing all this up.

01:47:35   I had never really used a GoPro before.

01:47:38   This thing is amazing.

01:47:39   Like everyone, including I think the three of us, and I very much include myself on this

01:47:43   one, we had said, "Oh, you know, the GoPro's going out of business."

01:47:49   Maybe we'd never talked about this, but I feel like we did.

01:47:51   GoPro's going out of business because that's why you have an iPhone and they're like waterproof

01:47:54   now and you're good to go. And yeah, this thing...

01:47:58   I don't recall saying that.

01:48:00   Okay, maybe it wasn't.

01:48:01   Your own goosebumps that are saying, "We all said this." Did we all say that? If you can't

01:48:05   even remember, chances are we didn't all say that.

01:48:06   Yeah, well, yeah, but I don't trust my own lack of memory. Anyway, the point is, is that

01:48:11   I've heard somebody say that GoPro's going out of business and I have no idea what their

01:48:17   financials look like. But this thing is so damn flexible, not in a physical sense, but

01:48:21   it is so damn flexible and so good that I, if you do any sort of, of videography that

01:48:31   involves any sort of motion and putting things in odd places, that sounds bad, but go with

01:48:36   it here, this is a tremendous device and I am so glad I was able to borrow it from work.

01:48:41   So yeah, so I suction cupped a GoPro to the back of the Alfa Romeo as I was going through

01:48:47   a parking garage sort of near my house, don't be creepy.

01:48:53   And so I got delivered to me an Alfa Romeo, Julia, let me try this, I'm sorry Federico

01:48:59   who probably doesn't even listen to the show.

01:49:01   He actually recorded for me a clip, I should send it to Marco so he can just dub it in.

01:49:06   He recorded for me a clip of him pronouncing it at my request and I'm going to butcher

01:49:10   it.

01:49:11   But anyway, it's a Quadrifoglio.

01:49:14   - Julia Quadrifoglio.

01:49:15   - It's the high speed, twin turbo V6 version

01:49:21   of the Alfa Romeo Giulia, and it is unbelievable.

01:49:25   Holy (buzzing)

01:49:28   is this a nice car?

01:49:29   (laughing)

01:49:30   It's take your Tesla, but make it much more tossable

01:49:34   and make it sound like sex.

01:49:41   and that is basically what this is.

01:49:43   Or perhaps take your M5 and make it lose 15,000 pounds.

01:49:48   Because by comparison, and I loved your M5,

01:49:50   don't get me wrong, but this thing feels like

01:49:54   it's one-tenth the car that the M5 was.

01:49:57   And oh my word, it's amazing.

01:49:59   - I'm a little concerned about your opinion

01:50:03   of the sound of certain things, but otherwise,

01:50:07   (laughing)

01:50:09   - This does sound really good.

01:50:11   I think it looks good.

01:50:12   Jon doesn't agree that it looks good,

01:50:13   but I think it looks good.

01:50:14   - Oh, it does not look good.

01:50:16   If you don't want to stick, of course.

01:50:17   That's the sticking point.

01:50:19   - I guess that's our first question.

01:50:20   Like, how is the automatic transmission

01:50:23   in this wonderful sex car?

01:50:25   (laughing)

01:50:28   - So the automatic is an odd thing.

01:50:31   This has the ZF 8-speed that BMW uses,

01:50:36   that the Challenger Hellcat uses.

01:50:39   It's the same ZF8 speed that's used in anything that wants to go fast, but only have two pedals,

01:50:44   and doesn't want to be a DCT.

01:50:46   And I still want a stick, but damn if this isn't a decent substitute.

01:50:55   And the biggest problem I had with this car is that—and to be clear, in case you haven't

01:51:01   been following along, this is my Alfa only for a week, and then it goes back to Alfa

01:51:05   It's a press car that was arranged by friends of the show at the Wheel Bearings podcast,

01:51:11   which we've linked to before and I'll link to again.

01:51:13   Imagine our show neutral, but by people who actually know what they're talking about,

01:51:16   and that's Wheel Bearings.

01:51:17   So anyway, so I've spent zero dollars on this car.

01:51:21   I've already gone through like a half a tank of gas in the span of three days, but that's

01:51:24   a different issue.

01:51:25   But this car will be going back to Alfa Romeo on Monday.

01:51:28   So anyway, the 8-speed, the ZF8-speed, it feels unlike any other automatic I've driven.

01:51:37   And I don't know if it's just that it has a lockup torque converter that spends almost

01:51:41   all of its time locked, but it feels much more like a DCT than it does a traditional

01:51:48   automatic.

01:51:50   The problem I have with the Alfa Romeo, though, was that, or is that, first gear is pretty

01:51:56   much useless.

01:51:58   I don't know what it is, because it just doesn't really move in first gear.

01:52:04   And then you bang into second gear and suddenly, you know, the Kraken has been released and

01:52:11   all bets are off.

01:52:12   Well, at least that's what I thought.

01:52:15   And it turns out that I'm just too programmed by BMW.

01:52:20   And I'm too used to seeing the dashboard light up like a Christmas tree if the traction control

01:52:28   comes on.

01:52:30   So earlier today I was out and the Alpha Romeo has four modes.

01:52:37   It has D, N, and A for dynamic, natural, and advanced efficiency, which basically amounts

01:52:44   to sport, normal, and eco crap, but it also has race mode. Race mode is scary because race mode

01:52:54   turns off all the electronic nannies, and that's the way it works. It also makes the exhaust sound

01:52:59   even better, but it turns off all the electronic nannies. And so I had it in race mode. I had it

01:53:08   firmly planted with the wheel at zero degrees, because this is a rear-wheel drive car with

01:53:13   500 horsepower and I don't trust my driving skills, as Marco saw at BMW in South Carolina.

01:53:19   So anyway, I had it firmly planted at zero degrees, and I mashed on the gas, and I realized,

01:53:26   oh my, first gear isn't the problem. The problem is it doesn't have wide enough tires to get

01:53:32   the traction to the ground, or to get the torque to the ground.

01:53:36   And so the problem is that it's neutered in first because it just can't get the power

01:53:43   down.

01:53:44   And, oh my word, is this thing quick when it hooks up.

01:53:48   It is unbelievable fast.

01:53:51   The numbers say it's 0 to 60 in a little under 4 seconds, which is probably about the same

01:53:55   speed as Marcos Tesla. But, oh my word, it feels like a rocket and sounds so good. It is

01:54:05   unbelievable. I don't know what to make of the reliability. You know, obviously everyone has like

01:54:11   a dad or an uncle or a grandfather or a cousin or something like that that had an Alfa Romeo

01:54:15   20-30 years ago and said that they never worked for more than 10 minutes at a time. I believe that

01:54:19   to be true, I don't doubt it. I don't know if this is reliable or not, who knows? But if it is reliable

01:54:28   and if one can have one under the $80,000 or so that the sticker's for, wow, what a great sedan.

01:54:37   And so much of the inside feels like it's a BMW, but slightly different. The gear shift is straight

01:54:45   out of a BMW. I'm assuming not literally, but it's the exact same style as like Tif's car has.

01:54:50   The paddles are humongous, but otherwise very BMW-ish. Although the BMW loaner I have today,

01:54:58   because my car went into the shop for another $2,000 repair, the loaner I have today is the

01:55:03   340 Grand Touring, Gran Turismo, whatever the hell the thing is that Tif has. I'm sorry, not 340,

01:55:09   a 330 GT. And the paddles are on the steering wheel, and I think I prefer that. But my understanding

01:55:19   is that I'm wrong. So John, do you know why I'm wrong to prefer the paddles on the wheel rather

01:55:23   than the steering column? I thought about that a lot because every time I read your view, someone,

01:55:28   people have strong opinions. Like usually they're raving about them in the Ferrari and how they're

01:55:33   on the column and not on the wheel. But the only thing I have to compare it to is, you know, my

01:55:39   my audio controls, which I use a surprising amount because I do random play on my iPod

01:55:45   in the car and I do a lot of skipping, much to the consternation of everyone in the car

01:55:48   with me.

01:55:49   And so very often I will want to skip to the next track while I'm turning.

01:55:54   And I think about, would it be better if I could get to that control and it was always

01:55:58   in the same place, or would it be better that it stays, you know, because the audio controls

01:56:02   are actually on the steering wheel?

01:56:03   And I, having, you know, I can't say, having, the only paddle-shift car I've ever used is

01:56:08   Marco's M5 and I don't think it did a lot of sharp turns in that but my recollection

01:56:12   is that those paddles were on the column, is that correct Marco?

01:56:16   No they were on the wheel.

01:56:17   Yeah I thought they were on the wheel.

01:56:18   My recollection is not helping me but anyway.

01:56:20   I've never had, I've never even driven one that had it on the column.

01:56:23   So using my audio controls I think I would find it more convenient for them to turn with

01:56:28   the wheel because where are my hands?

01:56:30   They're usually like I'm not, you know it's good that the ones that are on the column

01:56:33   never move but it's bad that my hands might be far away from it if I'm in the middle of

01:56:37   a turn and holding on for dear life, but I confess that I have no actual experience in

01:56:41   this situation. Closest I have is taking a suburban street turn a little bit too fast

01:56:48   while I'm trying to skip a track, and in that case I like the fact that it's by my hand.

01:56:52   But changing audio is not the same as shifting gear. So what is your experience with the—oh,

01:56:59   have you used both kinds, Casey? The column and the steering wheel?

01:57:03   So to back up a half step, today my car, my 335 went in for service.

01:57:09   I asked for a state inspection, which is required by law in the state of Virginia to be $16.

01:57:14   The bill is about $1600.

01:57:16   The reason being, apparently my rear tires were on-the-ware indicators to the point that

01:57:20   they would not do a safety inspection, they would not pass the safety inspection, and

01:57:24   then they said, "Oh, the fronts are bad enough that you should probably do the same thing."

01:57:27   So $1600 later, I now have new tires, or will have new tires.

01:57:32   But the problem I have is every time I bring my car into the shop, as you guys know better

01:57:35   than anyone, it's usually there for at least an overnight, as it turns out it has been,

01:57:39   if not a week or more.

01:57:41   So I asked for a loaner when I booked this appointment like two or three weeks ago, and

01:57:47   then the Giulio showed up and I thought, "Oh, maybe I should just tell them, you know, don't

01:57:50   give me a loaner because I have this car."

01:57:52   But then I thought, "No, if I do that, then it will need a full, like, coolant system

01:57:57   replacement or water pump or something like that."

01:57:59   So I better just have both of them.

01:58:01   So right now in my driveway there is one car that we own and two cars that are borrowed.

01:58:07   And the borrowed car, like I said, is a 330 GT, which is the neutered version of Tiff's

01:58:14   car.

01:58:15   The rear visibility out of that, by the way, is comically bad.

01:58:17   But anyway, the 340—I keep saying 340—the 330 has steering wheel-mounted paddles.

01:58:26   And I think I vastly prefer that, because I've been driving the Alpha predominantly

01:58:32   in manual mode, and it will aggressively try to avoid shifting by, like, presumably shutting

01:58:38   down cylinders or killing the fuel into the engine, rather than shifting.

01:58:44   So, there have been a couple times where I've been turning the Alpha and wanted to grab

01:58:51   the upshift paddle, and it's not where I expect it to be because it's hanging out at the steering

01:58:56   column and I'm at like—my hands are at like 12 and 6 o'clock. And even though these paddles

01:59:03   are freaking enormous, which I do like, they're not where I expect them to be and I don't

01:59:07   prefer it. So in my brief experience with paddle-shifted cars, I think I prefer it on

01:59:13   the wheel, which is weird because almost every one I ever—like almost every YouTube video

01:59:17   I ever see seems to think that on the column is the better way to do it.

01:59:23   I think the people who like it on the column is based on racing, and I bet you steer differently

01:59:29   in racing.

01:59:30   First of all, it's not the same as going on a suburban street where you might cross your

01:59:33   hands over each other.

01:59:34   I imagine maybe the racing technique is not to do as much, like to do more of passing

01:59:39   the wheel through your hands instead of going into these crazy positions where your arms

01:59:43   are practically crossing over each other, but that's just a guess, because that's the

01:59:45   scenario where you would want it on the column.

01:59:48   I mean, I'm just thinking like F1 cockpits where you have to take the steering wheel

01:59:50   off to even get in the stupid thing.

01:59:52   You don't have a lot of room to be turning your hands over each other, even if you're

01:59:57   making sharp turns, and the steering ratios are not the same as in regular cars.

02:00:01   So maybe in that situation, although they don't have paddle shifters in F1 cars anyways,

02:00:05   I don't know what I'm talking about, but I can see the argument both ways based on how

02:00:10   you drive.

02:00:11   What is your driving technique like?

02:00:12   With a giant steering wheel on residential roads in a regular person's sedan, on the

02:00:19   wheel probably seems like it's better.

02:00:21   But for the people who are raving, it could be just a situation of like, if they're on

02:00:25   a racetrack, that's why Ferraris have them, you know, there are advantages in that scenario.

02:00:29   So maybe if you had, well, let's see, when you did the BMW driver's school, did all the

02:00:34   BMWs, did you use stick shifts or were you paddle shifting?

02:00:38   No, they had 1 Series M's not too long before we were there, but they said they were constantly

02:00:43   blowing clutches because nobody knew how to drive them, and so they abandoned those and

02:00:47   everything was DCT when we were there.

02:00:50   And so those were all steering wheel mounted.

02:00:52   - Yeah, I don't think anybody's ever made a car

02:00:54   that wasn't, like if it has paddles,

02:00:56   I think they're on the wheel.

02:00:58   - The only thing that's a bummer

02:01:00   about these Humongous paddles though,

02:01:02   is that they're exactly where I'm used

02:01:03   to having a turn signal.

02:01:05   And so every time I go to use my turn signal,

02:01:07   I hit the damn downshift paddle,

02:01:09   or almost hit the downshift paddle.

02:01:11   But yeah, this ZF 8-speed, man,

02:01:13   it is a great transmission.

02:01:15   And my buddy Brian, who had the R32,

02:01:18   He had an E36 M3, he had the 335, he was the only recommended to me that I buy my 335.

02:01:25   He now has a 6-speed X5, which turns out is the thing, and I believe I've spoken to you

02:01:30   too about it, and I've driven it, and it is completely wrong in every measure, but it

02:01:34   is phenomenally cool.

02:01:36   Well anyway, he had been telling me for years that the ZF8 speed is actually really good,

02:01:39   and I kept telling him he was out of his damn mind, and it's DCT or 6-speed or get out.

02:01:44   Still think I'd prefer DCT, but I think if I had put

02:01:48   If if Marco or myself had ended up in this car and not known if it was a DCT or a slushbox

02:01:55   I'm not sure either of us could tell the difference. It is really that good. It is

02:01:59   phenomenally good and

02:02:02   The car is just tremendous so much of the switchgear feels like BMW. It does get silly things wrong as an example

02:02:09   BMW turn signals are very peculiar, but I love them.

02:02:13   And the way it works is they always end up in the center.

02:02:15   So even if you have the turn signal constantly going for an hour, the stalk will be in the

02:02:20   center.

02:02:21   So what you can do is, if you want to cancel the turn signal, you can either hit it in

02:02:25   the same direction it was going before, or you can even go in the opposite direction

02:02:28   just a smidge.

02:02:29   And either way, it will cancel like a pending turn signal.

02:02:33   In the Alpha, what I'm used to doing is I'll turn on a turn signal, and if for some reason

02:02:37   I want it to turn back off. I will just hit it in the same direction again. So if I hit

02:02:41   the left signal, then I'll hit it again to cancel it. And in the Alpha, the only way

02:02:45   to cancel it is to go the opposite direction, which is this little quirky thing, but it

02:02:49   drives me bananas. The other quirky thing is, it is really good Bluetooth support, everything

02:02:55   seems fine with that, except every time you get in the car, you need to re-... And if

02:03:02   If you go to your phone as the media input, you need to tell it to reconnect to the phone

02:03:07   for media.

02:03:08   It's already connected for telephone, but it's not connected for media.

02:03:12   And it's instant when it does it because it's already connected via the phone.

02:03:15   But you have to tell it, "Yes, I would like to listen to my phone.

02:03:17   Please enter media mode on my phone."

02:03:20   It's so annoying.

02:03:21   That's pretty good.

02:03:22   But yeah, but it works great.

02:03:23   And the display is pretty high res.

02:03:25   The backup camera is comically not, but the display is pretty high res.

02:03:29   It blends into the dashboard much better than any BMW does with like those like Tif's car

02:03:34   where it's just like a screen hanging out of the dashboard out of nowhere.

02:03:37   Audi does the same thing that's not unique to BMW.

02:03:41   But most of the switchgear just feels like BMW, and I mean that in a good way.

02:03:45   It feels very familiar.

02:03:47   One of the advantages of having a two-pedal car is it has a remote start, which is kind

02:03:52   of neat.

02:03:53   What else did I write down?

02:03:55   The biggest thing for me is just that it feels much like the M5 did, and it feels much like

02:04:01   the Tesla does, in that it feels like infinite power from almost any part of the RPM range.

02:04:09   The other thing that's interesting is, 3,000 RPM in any standard transmission car I've

02:04:15   ever driven is about where I would normally shift.

02:04:19   So like 1500 to 2000 RPM in any car I've ever driven is like the comfort zone, right?

02:04:26   And 3000 RPMs, when you're starting to get out of—you're definitely out of the comfort

02:04:30   zone, but you're starting to get into like, no, you're clearly trying to go somewhere

02:04:33   with the quickness.

02:04:34   That's like what 3000+ is.

02:04:37   In this car, which has about a 6500 RPM redline, in this car, 3000 RPM feels like 2000 RPM

02:04:44   any other car, which is to say 3,000 RPM feels like, okay, this is about the top of the comfort

02:04:49   zone, but still comfortably in the comfort zone.

02:04:54   So it just wants to rev like no other car I've ever driven.

02:04:59   And it is phenomenally, phenomenally fun.

02:05:03   Now all in the chat room is giving me all sorts of grief because I didn't make a perfect

02:05:08   quality video for him or her and is wondering why I'm doing a video at all.

02:05:13   My intention is to do a proper car review of this and put it on YouTube probably sometimes

02:05:18   six months from now.

02:05:20   But I'm trying to get a whole bunch of film that I can splice together using either iMovie

02:05:26   or if I decide to spend the money on Final Cut Pro and hopefully get like a five to ten

02:05:31   minute video out of this.

02:05:33   Also interesting, oh and I'm definitely going to write something on my blog about it.

02:05:36   Also interestingly, if you, and I don't think I have the link handy, but if you look up

02:05:40   the Ars Technica review of this car. As it turns out, that review was written by someone

02:05:48   based out of DC. Well, this car is based out of Baltimore, and if you look at the plate

02:05:54   on the car that's in my garage as we speak, and if you look at the plate of the Ars Technica

02:05:58   review, it is the same plate, and thus one would assume it is the same car. Also, interestingly,

02:06:05   there was another review I saw based out of—by someone based out of New York, and the plate

02:06:10   on this car is either 6 or GLP K17, and the other review I saw was I guess 6LP K16. So

02:06:21   it's not really surprising, but it just struck me funny that apparently Al Fermé or really

02:06:24   Fiat Chrysler of America imported maybe six of these or something like that and just went

02:06:30   to the Michigan DMV and said, "Okay, I would like to register six Giulias if you please."

02:06:35   Additionally, when the car was delivered on Monday, it was delivered in the car as the

02:06:41   Competizione Red, which is beautiful.

02:06:45   When it was delivered, the chase car was another Giulia.

02:06:48   It was not the Quadrifoglio.

02:06:52   I think that's right.

02:06:53   I'm sorry, Federico.

02:06:54   Anyway, it was just the more pedestrian version.

02:06:56   The chase car was white.

02:06:58   The loaner that I got today, and I did not ask for it, is white.

02:07:04   This white thing follows me even though I don't want it to.

02:07:08   But uh, I don't, I really don't.

02:07:11   But god, this red is so good.

02:07:13   So I will just say, in my history of getting service loaner vehicles from car makers while

02:07:17   my car is in the shop, I've never gotten a white one.

02:07:22   You had a bunch of white ones when we were in South Carolina driving school though, thank

02:07:25   you very much.

02:07:27   Yeah, yeah, yeah.

02:07:28   Anyway, the car is tremendous.

02:07:30   I don't want to give it back.

02:07:34   I really, really love it.

02:07:35   And if I was to buy a car tomorrow,

02:07:40   and I was willing to give up on the six speed,

02:07:43   and I had $80,000 to spend,

02:07:46   I really think I would buy one.

02:07:49   I really, really do.

02:07:50   I mean, I'm used to a car that never runs anyway,

02:07:52   so why not get another one that's unreliable?

02:07:54   This thing is tremendous.

02:07:57   - That's really nice to hear.

02:07:59   I knew Jon would not like the way it looks,

02:08:02   and would therefore rule everything else out about it.

02:08:03   plus John would never buy a car at this expensive,

02:08:06   no matter how much money he had.

02:08:08   So I am-- - That's not true.

02:08:10   That's totally true. - That is absolutely true.

02:08:12   - No matter how much money I had,

02:08:14   you just made an infinite timescale argument.

02:08:16   - Okay, on an infinite money scale.

02:08:18   - Okay, on an infinite money. - On an infinite money scale.

02:08:20   (laughing)

02:08:21   - Yes, but anyway, I am most pleased to hear your opinion

02:08:25   of the automatic transmission,

02:08:27   because your description of it,

02:08:29   like really avoiding shifting when you're in manual mode,

02:08:33   like really avoiding shifting itself.

02:08:34   The main problems I had with all manually shifted automatics

02:08:40   that I've ever driven have come down to too many gears

02:08:44   and also that it would second guess me

02:08:47   and that it would shift itself

02:08:48   when it felt like being convenient for me.

02:08:51   No matter what kind of sporty or manual mode I put it in,

02:08:54   that was always a problem for me.

02:08:56   And so I'm glad to hear that this one appears

02:09:00   to be a much better implementation of that.

02:09:02   And the only automatic shifting that the M5 DCT ever did

02:09:07   for me was if you came to a complete stop,

02:09:10   it would put you in first gear.

02:09:12   - Yeah, and this will do the same, you're right.

02:09:14   But I totally get your point, and yes,

02:09:17   it is really, really good, stunningly, stunningly good

02:09:22   in a way that really kind of makes me uncomfortable.

02:09:26   And I say this somewhat tongue-in-cheek,

02:09:29   but I also kind of mean it.

02:09:31   Part of my identity as a car guy and as someone who has enjoyed cars is driving a stick.

02:09:38   I feel like I would be losing part of myself if I bought an automatic car that I drove

02:09:43   every day.

02:09:44   And I recognize how bananas and kooky that sounds.

02:09:47   I fully own it.

02:09:49   But it's just the way it is.

02:09:50   If I'm really honest, it's the way it is.

02:09:51   I guess it's turned into analog all of a sudden.

02:09:53   But anyway, this car is good enough that it would make me second guess having a stick.

02:10:02   Like I would absolutely take the stick if it was an option, but since it isn't, I would

02:10:08   absolutely still consider this car if I had $80,000 to spend, you know, if I felt like

02:10:13   it would ever run for more than 10 minutes at a time, etc., etc., etc.

02:10:17   But it is so good.

02:10:18   And I think part of the reason it's so good is because it's 500 horsepower, right?

02:10:21   Like if this was in a 200 horsepower car, I don't think I would be near as amused.

02:10:25   Thoughts, Jon?

02:10:26   Are you going to come visit tomorrow?

02:10:28   No.

02:10:29   Maybe if you had a Ferrari, I would, but...

02:10:32   Oh, I see how it is.

02:10:33   Luigi, if I were only the Ferrari.

02:10:35   You wouldn't fly down there.

02:10:36   No, you're right, I wouldn't.

02:10:37   But, well, I don't know.

02:10:38   Maybe if maybe for a Ferrari, I might.

02:10:40   I don't know.

02:10:42   But no, it sounds good.

02:10:43   It looks bad.

02:10:44   What can I tell you?

02:10:45   I don't think it looks that bad.

02:10:47   I really don't.

02:10:48   Gerber baby.

02:10:51   - Spice Navigator.

02:10:53   - If I was in the market for this kind of vehicle,

02:10:57   I would give this strong consideration.

02:11:00   I think it looks good.

02:11:02   I like the idea, having the R driven one,

02:11:05   I like the idea of it having spirit and a soul

02:11:09   that most modern cars lack, giving you feelings

02:11:14   of this is so awesome, I just love this,

02:11:16   I love the way it sounds, I love the way it drives.

02:11:19   That's something that is really hard to find

02:11:22   in the rest of the car world most of the time,

02:11:25   especially at the high end,

02:11:26   where so many high-end cars also have to appeal

02:11:28   to old people with stiff bones

02:11:32   that they finally have the money to buy them.

02:11:34   So it's like they have to also appeal to Lexus buyers.

02:11:39   And so it's hard to find really nice sports cars

02:11:42   that are also really fun and make you feel feelings.

02:11:47   And so if this does that, that's really special,

02:11:49   and that's pretty rare.

02:11:51   So I would definitely give it strong consideration

02:11:54   if it's the kind of car that I was looking for.

02:11:56   I think I'm ruined now for electric forever,

02:11:58   but if I was not, I would certainly look at those.

02:12:03   - Yeah, I mean, it's going to be hard.

02:12:05   So John and Marco did not know

02:12:08   that I had received the Alfa.

02:12:10   They knew it was a possibility, but they didn't know I had.

02:12:13   And earlier today, John and I were talking about

02:12:16   the new six-speed, what is it, the Accord Sport?

02:12:21   I don't know, I already went to sleep even thinking about it

02:12:23   but the point is--

02:12:25   - The car you can afford that will work.

02:12:28   - To its credit, it will probably work forever.

02:12:30   But yeah, like, okay, the idea of a six-speed sounds great.

02:12:35   The idea of an Accord, eh, mostly sounds great

02:12:38   but the idea of 250 horsepower,

02:12:41   that is half as many horsepowers as this thing has.

02:12:44   So, and I know it's also the third the cost,

02:12:48   or probably even less than that,

02:12:49   probably a quarter the cost, but oh my God,

02:12:51   it's intoxicating, it's just so intoxicating.

02:12:54   - Well, what about all that trunk space

02:12:56   and the cavernous back seat that your children,

02:12:58   who will not be small forever,

02:13:00   will thank you for someday?

02:13:01   - I mean, this thing is reasonably large.

02:13:03   I mean, Declan's been in the back of it.

02:13:04   I will also say that Erin, who is, if you recall,

02:13:07   six-ish months pregnant at this point,

02:13:10   she and Declan and I went to dinner Monday night,

02:13:12   and she did not like it.

02:13:15   And it's not because it's fast.

02:13:17   It's not because it's fast, like that doesn't bother her.

02:13:19   - It was noisy and rough ride.

02:13:20   - The noisy mostly didn't bother her,

02:13:23   but you got it with the rough ride

02:13:24   because I had it in dynamic mode,

02:13:26   I believe for most of the trip.

02:13:28   And I don't recall if I was manually shifting or not,

02:13:30   but she did not care for the shift

02:13:33   because the speed and the ferocity

02:13:36   of the shifts in dynamic mode.

02:13:38   Now, once I turned it to advanced efficiency,

02:13:41   which again is basically eco mode, then it was fine.

02:13:43   And it's actually very docile at that point.

02:13:45   But when I had it even I think in normal or natural

02:13:49   or whatever the N is in DNA, when I had it in that mode,

02:13:52   even that she did not care for.

02:13:54   So yes, she did not like it until I kind of neutered it.

02:14:00   And some of that may be pregnancy and I asked her that

02:14:02   and she said, "No, I don't think so."

02:14:04   She said, "It's pregnancy that's causing me

02:14:07   "to hate getting in and out of it,

02:14:08   "but it's not pregnancy that's causing me

02:14:11   to hate the jerkiness of it.

02:14:13   It's a fun car though, and I'm gonna be really, really sad

02:14:16   to give it back on Monday.

02:14:17   Super duper sad.

02:14:19   - Well, you gotta buy one.

02:14:21   - Oh yeah, that's the right answer.

02:14:22   $80,000.

02:14:23   - Yeah, we'll like start a Patreon or something.

02:14:26   - Okay, that sounds great, yes.

02:14:28   (laughing)

02:14:28   Send the reasonably affluent white man

02:14:33   a bunch of extra money so he can buy

02:14:34   an Italian sports sedan.

02:14:35   That sounds like a great idea.

02:14:36   I'm sure that'll be trending on Patreon momentarily.

02:14:40   Isn't that basically what YouTube stars try to do? They're all on Patreon.

02:14:44   Yeah, touche. Touche.

02:14:45   I don't know. I'd love... Oh man, I would love this car. It would probably work for

02:14:51   10 minutes at a time, but man, would I love it.

02:14:53   Yeah, just like your BMW V.

02:14:54   Exactly. True story.

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