313: Story of the Summer


00:00:00   [Intro music]

00:00:08   From Relay FM, this is Upgrade episode 313. Today's show is brought to you by Pingdom,

00:00:14   Fully, and Things. My name is Myke Hurley, I am joined by Jason Snow. Hi Jason Snow.

00:00:19   Hi Myke Hurley, how are you? Fine and dandy my friend, back to normal, this time. And as is normal

00:00:26   with every show, I have a hashtag Snell Talk question for you. And it comes from Ryan,

00:00:30   and Ryan wants to know, Jason, how do you feel about the fake crowd noises in sports games?

00:00:35   Uh, well first I want to back up for a second, you said like every show there's a Snell Talk

00:00:39   question, does that mean like for Connected there's a Snell Talk question but it's never

00:00:42   spoken because I'm not there? I mean, when I say show I mean this one. Oh I see. Like every episode

00:00:47   you know? Oh see, I just I like to imagine like what would the Snell Talk question be for this

00:00:52   episode of Cortex? Snell Talk questions have appeared in other shows, we have one on the

00:00:56   Pan-Attic recently. Okay, see, that's good. Um, this question is referring to the fact that there

00:01:02   are there are lots of sporting events going on now that have no fans in the stands, and so the TV

00:01:06   broadcasters are sometimes the public address announcer, you know, the sound system at a at a

00:01:11   venue plays crowd noise to simulate what would be the noise if uh if there was a crowd there. And

00:01:20   uh having listened to both, so I was listening to the I think it was the Korean Baseball Organization

00:01:27   games before Major League Baseball started and they were just playing those on ESPN with no sound

00:01:31   effects, and it's weird to have it be like silent just sort of the sound of the wind.

00:01:36   Um, and then on um NBC's streaming platforms, including Peacock, the uh the Premier League games

00:01:48   from England were done where you could listen to it. They were broadcast with the sound added of

00:01:55   fans, but you could go onto their streaming channel and listen without watch it without the sound added

00:02:00   and it's difficult because basically what I want to say is a silent stadium is no good.

00:02:08   You need something. I think I've seen it where they've added sort of a it's like a white noise

00:02:13   in the background. I think the white noise is a good thing. I think they should play white noise

00:02:17   of fan noise at the parks because it's good for all the players and everything to have it be that

00:02:24   not every word that they say is clearly audible to everyone in attendance and everyone watching on TV.

00:02:30   Like I don't think that's healthy. There's some strategy loss in that I think too. Yeah, and

00:02:36   embarrassment. There's a whole chain of baseball players striking out on pitches and then shouting

00:02:42   a bad word that is very clearly audible and it's hilarious. It makes me laugh, but I guess I would

00:02:50   say and there was a golf one too the US Open that there was a guy missed a putt and he just

00:02:55   proclaimed something and everybody heard it. So I think some white noise just to give it some

00:03:02   background is a good thing. That said, some of the stuff is aggressive. I actually don't mind it

00:03:09   sounding like a real crowd because I like to pretend that things are normal. That's the whole

00:03:14   point of airing these sports I think is to pretend that things are normal when they're not and to give

00:03:18   you a little bit of comfort. Sometimes they make bad decisions and there are weird reactions. It's

00:03:23   like, "Oh, you pushed the wrong button there," and that's not great. I don't know. It doesn't bother

00:03:27   me. I think done well, it can be like anything. Done well, I think it's good. Done badly, it's bad.

00:03:35   But I think at the bare minimum, a little bit of white noise in that situation is not bad.

00:03:40   I watched the Community Shield over the weekend, which was the Liverpool and Arsenal

00:03:45   from Wembley Stadium. That was interesting because they had to simulate that there were two sets of

00:03:51   home fans because it's a neutral site. They actually had songs from the various teams and

00:03:57   when one team would score, they would play the people singing the song for that club.

00:04:04   I thought, "That's kind of good. I kind of like that." The short version is, "I think you need

00:04:10   something," and when it's well done, I think it's good. That's it. Yeah, my feeling on it is that

00:04:16   most of the time I don't notice it. It just sounds fine, but there are times where like,

00:04:22   "Oh, that sounded weird," or like, "Oh, that sounds fake," but I feel like I notice those moments way

00:04:28   more than if there was no sound. Then I would constantly be thinking, "This is weird. There's

00:04:32   no sound." Exactly. It's like there's something wrong. It's an empty void that there's occasional

00:04:37   shouts of somebody in. The one sound that I kind of miss, although I'm sure there's some ballparks

00:04:42   that do this, is one of my favorite sounds in all of baseball is when somebody hits a towering fly

00:04:48   ball that is very much not going to leave the park and be a home run. It's just going to be an out,

00:04:53   but the fans who are not really paying attention and have no depth perception all go, "Ah!" and you

00:05:00   get the swell of fan excitement that is immediately dashed when it's very clear that this ball is not

00:05:05   going anywhere. I haven't heard anybody emulate dumb fans yet, but it may happen.

00:05:10   Thank you so much to Ryan for that Snowtalk question. If you'd like to send in a question

00:05:15   to help us open the show, just send out a tweet with the hashtag #snowtalk or use question mark

00:05:19   #snowtalk in the Relay FM Discord. We have some follow-up. I have a question from Adrian that was

00:05:25   follow-up in relation to, I think it was on our last episode or in a recent episode we were talking

00:05:29   about the potential for Apple to create new peripherals with Apple Silicon Macs, like new

00:05:35   keyboard, new mice, and what would they have on them? I think we both weren't really too sure of

00:05:39   what we could add, but Adrian made a suggestion I thought was interesting to have some kind of

00:05:44   functionality similar to what the H1 chip does with AirPods for seamless switching between devices.

00:05:50   I would like that. I hadn't really thought of this. I was viewing it also as a follow-up to our

00:05:57   conversation about what features they could add to the products, and they go together, right?

00:06:01   The idea here that although Apple is going to make some software updates to AirPods to make them

00:06:06   switch between devices more easily this fall with the big OS updates, I do wonder if there's

00:06:14   some hardware that they could put on Macs that would make this more reliable and that maybe

00:06:20   exists or will exist on new iPhones and iPads. So it's something to keep in mind because Apple

00:06:25   definitely wants it to be the case that you can essentially sit down at an Apple device,

00:06:29   pick up an Apple device with your AirPods in and have it sort of seamlessly switch. And as somebody

00:06:35   who runs with a pair of AirPods and an Apple watch, it is not seamless. Sometimes it's mostly

00:06:42   seamless. Sometimes I will start playing a podcast in Overcast on my watch and it will play in my

00:06:47   AirPods. And then a lot of times you gotta like pick the AirPods and see if it disconnects from

00:06:53   the phone and, "Oh no, it's still connected to the phone. I need to turn Bluetooth off on the phone

00:06:57   and now will it play?" And so like every, this is one of those things that actually Apple has a

00:07:02   great advantage at because they control the hardware and the software and this ecosystem

00:07:06   in order to say, "Our end goal is that these wireless headphones should just work with

00:07:12   whatever device you're using at the moment." And then back from that, what hardware and software do

00:07:18   they need to build to enable that? So sure, maybe that's an Apple Silicon Mac thing that

00:07:24   can make that process even more transparent. That would be great. - But like, I would like to be

00:07:30   able to use my track pad on my iPad or my Mac, right? Like really easily. - Yeah, it's all the

00:07:38   same deal, right? Like can you build a system that allows any Bluetooth or, I mean, let's be serious

00:07:46   here, probably any Apple branded peripheral to work and switch fairly seamlessly between devices.

00:07:51   That would be great, right? I don't know exactly how you do that, but I agree. I have that now,

00:07:58   like right now you can do that with the Magic Trackpad and the Magic Keyboard and the Magic

00:08:02   Mouse by plugging them in via a lightning cable, which is nice. I actually kind of like that,

00:08:08   that it's kind of instant. But I do have that where I am trying to take a keyboard that was on this

00:08:14   Mac and use it with this iPad and you get into the Bluetooth menu dance and all of that. And it

00:08:21   could be better, right? - We spoke about the original upgrade in Monica for people who can

00:08:28   prove to us that they've been around since the beginning of the show. And we found our first,

00:08:33   Sunit sent us a tweet that they had sent back in September of 2014 congratulating us on starting

00:08:39   the show. So we have some proof from Sunit who is crowned as the first original upgrade in.

00:08:48   - Okay, all right. I just want to point out for reasons that will become clear. I don't need to

00:08:58   approve of you as an original upgrade in. Prove it in your own heart. Once you know in your own

00:09:04   heart that you were an original upgrade in, you have my blessing. I don't want us to become like

00:09:10   the corporate clerks of upgrade in-ism, Myke. - Interesting, okay. I'm happy to approve the

00:09:16   original status. - Okay, send your proof to Myke. - But you got to have the proof, right? That's why

00:09:22   I feel like I'm happy with this one because we've only had a couple of people in the last week that

00:09:27   have attempted to prove themselves, right? Because you have to be able to show me the receipts.

00:09:32   And Sunit had the receipts, right? So I want to see the receipts if you're going to try and

00:09:36   tell me you're an original upgrade in. - And if you know you were, then you have my approval.

00:09:42   - Yeah, if you know you've been around since episode one but don't have it, right? Like,

00:09:47   I bestow upon you the title of original upgrade in. But if you want me to tell you personally

00:09:53   that you are one, you need to be able to prove it to me. So that's where we sit on that one.

00:09:58   - All right. - iOS 13.7, it just keeps going up. - Email Myke. - It keeps going up iOS 13.7.

00:10:05   I think we can call iOS 13 the Mac OS X of iOS releases because they just keep incrementing that

00:10:13   number. iOS 13.7 is now available in beta featuring the second version of the exposure

00:10:20   notification feature. So exposure notification, which we used to call contact tracing,

00:10:26   it's still what it's called by most places, but Apple and Google changed it to exposure

00:10:29   notification so they could try and steer away from some of the bad reputation that contact

00:10:34   tracing was getting. - Contact tracing is a very particular thing too that is involved manual,

00:10:38   like the phones don't do contact tracing. - Exactly, very good point. - They just provide a

00:10:42   log of notifications of people who were nearby. - It's part of that, right? Like having a Google

00:10:48   contact tracing method. - Yes, it could potentially be a tool used in contact tracing. - So we'd

00:10:54   spoken about this a long time ago and so for a quick refresher, this is the system where your

00:11:00   phones, iPhones and Android phones can communicate with each other to exchange codes and keys,

00:11:06   basically to say that two devices have been in each other's presence for a long period of time,

00:11:12   and it creates these links and there's lots of privacy measures built in. And then the idea that

00:11:16   if you test positive for COVID, you can tell your an application created by your local health

00:11:22   authority that you have it, and then your phone will send out, well your phone then goes up to

00:11:27   a server which then sends out notifications to everybody who you've had one of these link

00:11:31   exchanges with within a certain period of time. Now, prior to iOS 13.7 and currently, like as we

00:11:39   speak of today, to be able to use the exposure notification feature built into iOS, you have to

00:11:44   first download an app from your regional health provider. And so then it will turn on, you can

00:11:51   then turn on exposure notification tracking. But from 13.7, and I expect iOS 14 will get this

00:11:59   feature too, you'll no longer need to install the healthcare provider app first to opt into exposure

00:12:05   notification tracking. You can turn it on in the system, and then as long as it's been approved for

00:12:10   your region, you can only turn it on if it has been, you'll be able to use it. Then if you've

00:12:16   been exposed to somebody who has COVID, your device will alert you without you ever needing

00:12:20   to have installed an app. But if you as an individual test positive, you install the app

00:12:25   to tell the app so, which then will trigger the notifications for others. Basically, this is just

00:12:30   taking away one extra step so more people may use it. But I don't know how many people are

00:12:39   realistically going to use these features. I think it will be interesting to see if Apple has a plan

00:12:44   for onboarding people, right? Like I don't think we've seen that. I haven't seen that like as a

00:12:50   such as like Apple saying to you, "Hey, you should turn this on. Here's why." And I also think from

00:12:56   this, with this being in 13.7, I think we can assume that there's still a bit of time until 14

00:13:03   because I don't know, maybe Apple also wants to have this in 13.7 in case people don't upgrade

00:13:11   to 14. So they have both cracks, but I would feel like the fact that they're putting this into iOS

00:13:17   13.7 would indicate that 14 is not imminent, right? Which is what, I mean, logic would suggest

00:13:25   anyway, but it's such an unknown right now as to when iOS 14 could arrive. Yeah, I mean,

00:13:31   it may also be that they want to make sure that people who are on the 13 track and maybe

00:13:35   hesitate at upgrading to 14 for a while are still able to have this feature. I think it's a little

00:13:40   bit of a problem, but yes. Yeah, so we'll see. But it's there now. And I, of course, went to this

00:13:46   feature and it is not enabled for me because the state of California is not using this feature. So

00:13:52   there's no app and therefore it's not available to me because you have to be in the region

00:13:56   that has the availability. Otherwise there's kind of no point. I am very surprised that California

00:14:02   is not doing this. I don't know. I don't know what they're doing. I would seem to me to be like one

00:14:07   of the places that would definitely do it, but. Well, you know, we don't have that many tech

00:14:11   companies here, so it's hard to find. There's no lobbying. There's no way a tech company could

00:14:16   lobby. There's nobody to make the tools. Who would even make it? Who would do it? It's happening in

00:14:21   England soon. They've started doing testing in certain regions of an app that has this

00:14:27   functionality. I don't know why they can't just turn this. I mean, maybe we'll just, you know,

00:14:33   pass for myself. I am happier about this because I prefer to just do everything through Apple's

00:14:40   privacy than to give my information to the government first. Right. So like for me personally,

00:14:48   I'm happy about the fact that this will be implemented and I will turn this on. Right.

00:14:54   And then I can just be opted into this system. It can be helpful for me, helpful for others

00:15:00   without having to give whatever information my government wants me to give in their application

00:15:05   first. So like that's cool. I'm pleased about that. So I'm intrigued to see how it ends up

00:15:13   taking control. It's not like taking over if it does or if it doesn't. I'm interested to see how

00:15:18   many people actually sign up for it. It is about to be September. We can basically call it September

00:15:25   now. Do you know what happens in September? In September, you can join in with supporters around

00:15:30   the world during childhood cancer awareness month to raise money for the kids of St. Jude's

00:15:35   Children's Research Hospital, where families never receive a bill for anything. Every single year,

00:15:40   between 180,000 and 240,000 children are diagnosed with cancer worldwide. And St. Jude is not going

00:15:48   to stop until no child dies from cancer. That is their mission. They have made incredible strides.

00:15:54   And with your support, with our support, we can help make this a reality. Go today to

00:16:00   stjude.org/relay and you can join the fight to end childhood cancer. That is stjude.org/relay.

00:16:08   Go and donate now. And when you're on our donation page, you're going to see that we've been adding

00:16:14   in some milestones. So we've got some fun stuff that we've been doing, some fun Twitch streams,

00:16:19   and we have more upcoming. We are currently, we've passed $35,000, which is absolutely unbelievable.

00:16:27   We aren't even in September yet and we've passed 10% of our goal. So I just want to thank everyone

00:16:34   so much for the donations that they've made so far. And if you still want to donate, please go

00:16:40   ahead. We've got some fun stuff that we're cooking up at the moment. Me and Steven are working on

00:16:45   some challenges, basically things that we can do that are bad for us that make you want to give

00:16:50   money to make happen, right? People like that kind of stuff. So we're working on that. We've also got

00:16:56   some milestones in on the campaign page. So I just did on our Twitch channel, which you can go and

00:17:03   find the video. I did a Q&A and run through of my iPad setup, which was a fun thing to do last

00:17:09   weekend. Steven's going to do a tour of his Mac when we hit $50,000. And then when we hit 70,

00:17:16   he's going to do a live stream of installing Apple's wheels onto his Mac Pro. Steven bought

00:17:22   the Mac Pro wheels and for your enjoyment, he will install them. And we're going to be adding

00:17:27   in more. I've got some ideas for some other streams that we're going to put in there. So

00:17:30   basically as we hit different milestones throughout the fundraising campaign, we're going to be doing

00:17:35   more and more stuff as we lead up to the podcast-a-thon on September 18th, which Jason's

00:17:40   cooking up something very fun for. I am happy to announce that I will once again, somehow be hosting

00:17:48   a game show that will happen during the podcast-a-thon. And it's a whole new game.

00:17:55   Yes, we're not doing Family Feud again, although that was good. I didn't want to go back there

00:17:59   again. We're going to do something different. We'll see how it goes. It hasn't been tried before

00:18:05   on any of my podcasts anyway, so we're going to give it a go. So that's another reason to

00:18:12   tune in for that. Yeah, we're really excited. We've got a lot of stuff in the works.

00:18:18   We started our show today. I had a planning call with the wonderful people at St Jude

00:18:22   and we're trying to get everything all nailed down. We've got a great event coming up,

00:18:26   but go check out the donation page right now at stude.org/relay.

00:18:31   Anything that you can give will be greatly appreciated.

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00:21:02   So let's do some upstream headlines, Jason. I have a few things for you that Apple are up to.

00:21:09   Keira Knightley has signed on to produce and star in a period drama called The Essex Serpent.

00:21:17   It's based on a book of the same name. This was commissioned from the UK,

00:21:21   so showing Apple's continued stretch outside of the US for content. This is, you know,

00:21:27   this is Keira Knightley doing what Keira Knightley does best, right? Period dramas.

00:21:31   - And this is a good example, and there have been some others, where,

00:21:35   as we talked about years ago, they hired somebody from the BBC to be the head of

00:21:40   content for Europe, and they're trying to create shows in different countries. So not everything

00:21:48   you see on Apple TV+ is going to be an American, you know, big budget American drama. They're doing

00:21:54   those, obviously, and those are what they launched with. But we're going to see more of this. There's

00:21:57   already been a handful of sort of little British sitcoms that just happen to be on Apple TV+

00:22:02   instead of, you know, originating on the BBC or one of the other various associated BBCs,

00:22:09   like Channel 4. Again, because I am convinced as an American that all TV in the UK is just the BBC.

00:22:15   So also, The Essex Serpent, that used to be your neighbor.

00:22:18   - I did used to live in Essex. - You lived right by the serpent,

00:22:22   didn't you? Right by the serpent. - That's me, yep.

00:22:24   - Take a left at the serpent, and then there's Myke's house.

00:22:28   - And there's Myke's house. You know, I think that this is like another example, though, of like,

00:22:32   just having a, you know, looking at the the roster of talent that Apple TV+ has is quite astounding.

00:22:40   Like, I'm going to list some more in a minute, but another one, right?

00:22:44   - Yep. - Keira Knightley is a

00:22:45   movie star, right? So for her to be in a television show on Apple TV+, just another massive name.

00:22:53   - Well, it's like, this looks a little like Chris Evans with Defending Jacob, right? Where

00:23:01   it's an interesting mixture too, where it's a long form project, it's a mini series, and

00:23:05   that sounds like this is maybe that, is this a mini series or a movie?

00:23:08   - I believe this is as a show, not a movie. - It's a show. So, you know, whether it's extended

00:23:13   or not, like, it's a similar thing where it's somebody who's like headlining movies and

00:23:18   the other headlining this thing on Apple TV+. By the way, before we leave the UK production

00:23:24   concept, I want to, once again, I'm going to say what I've already said, which is

00:23:29   I'm throwing a heavy endorsement toward Ted Lasso, which is a great example, actually,

00:23:35   of a show that has an American star and an American writing staff is my understanding,

00:23:42   but was made in England because it's set in England and it has a lot of great English

00:23:48   actors in it, along with Jason Sudeikis, who's the lead, the American lead, and if you got

00:23:54   turned off by the concept of Ted Lasso because it was based on a commercial or because it's

00:23:59   about sports, just give it a try. It's so good. It's about halfway through the season now. They're

00:24:04   releasing them weekly, so you're going to watch those first five and then you're going to regret

00:24:07   that you have to watch the rest of them weekly. - I have, this is on our list, but I'm kind of

00:24:14   waiting until I can... - Watch it all? - Yeah, either watch it all or get close to the end,

00:24:19   I think is where we're going to go with it, because I keep also hearing universally good

00:24:25   things about it. - It's really good. I think one of the things that works is that it's not what you

00:24:32   expect. You expect a certain kind of thing when you hear the premise and that's not what the show

00:24:36   is. The show has heart and depth and it's remarkable. It is, on one level, yes, it is a

00:24:44   sort of, it's a sports movie in the, or sports show, but it's like those sports movies that are

00:24:48   heartwarming and also very funny. So yeah, people should check it out. - There are three docuseries

00:24:57   coming to Apple TV+. One is called Tiny World and is narrated by Paul Rudd, which was funny to me

00:25:03   because Paul Rudd is Ant-Man. - Is he Ant-Man? Oh, hello everybody. Welcome to my world, the world of

00:25:11   the tiny. - Because, well, that's exactly what this show is about. So this series, I'll give a

00:25:18   quote here from Variety, this nature series aims to look at the world through the eyes of the

00:25:22   ziniest creatures and witness the extraordinary things that they do to survive. - You've got to

00:25:26   think the producers are like, wow, who could we get to narrate this? Like Ant-Man? No, we can't,

00:25:31   we can't do, oh, okay, he's available, all right. - Funnily enough, everyone's available right now.

00:25:38   - To narrate things in their house, sure. - October 2nd, this one's coming. Then we have

00:25:44   Becoming You, narrated by Olivia Colman, who's currently playing the queen in The Crown,

00:25:49   obviously Olivia Colman's been in a million things and she's fantastic. This is coming in November.

00:25:53   - Oscar winner. - Oscar winner. The series looks at how a child's first 2000 days shaped the rest

00:26:00   of their lives and Earth at Night in Color, narrated by Tom Hiddleston, follows the moonlit

00:26:07   dramas of animals at night, revealing new insights and never before seen behaviors.

00:26:12   I am into all of these because the human interest one, right, Becoming You, just sounds like a really

00:26:19   interesting premise and then the other two are nature documentaries and Apple TV is in 4k, so

00:26:25   they're going to look fantastic. So I will watch all of those, they sound great and this is, we

00:26:30   spoke about this a million times already, but this is another example of you can't just do one type

00:26:36   of programming if you want to be a not, because I think Apple at this point is I think kind of

00:26:42   showing themselves that they're not, they don't want to be like HBO of old, they want to be a

00:26:46   streaming service with a lot of content on it. Like that's what they want to do, they want to make you

00:26:50   feel like you are coming to them and you can get a lot of stuff, which is why we can talk every

00:26:57   single week about the new things they're ordering, right, they want lots of good content and if

00:27:01   you're going to go that route you have to have a variety of content and that includes documentaries.

00:27:06   Here's a weird one, Apple is planning on using AR experiences to market TV+ content. This is a

00:27:15   report from Mark Gurman at Bloomberg, I just need to read this quote from the article. Go ahead, do it.

00:27:21   Elements of a TV show like characters or objects would be displayed on a viewer's phone or tablet,

00:27:27   for example someone watching a moonwalking scene in For All Mankind might be able to see a virtual lunar

00:27:33   rover on their device's display, seemingly perched atop their living room coffee table. The option

00:27:39   would serve as a bonus content akin to the director commentary or trailer that accompany a movie and

00:27:44   would be accessed from Apple's TV app on the iPhone or iPad. And then the article also references that

00:27:51   this would be available next year ahead of any headset from Apple set for 2022, who cares.

00:27:57   Who cares, no one wants this, who cares. Yeah, this feels like they did a Super Bowl commercial

00:28:04   where there was like a scratch and sniff card. It's a gimmick, it seems like a really, like,

00:28:09   this feels like something that John Moltz should have written for Crazy Apple Rumors, like, it's

00:28:17   literally putting pieces of Apple's product strategy together and then making a joke about

00:28:22   how they're connected in a stupid way. Like, AR is really big, how does Apple TV Plus factor into AR?

00:28:29   It's like, well, what do we create AR models that, so while you're watching this show, you can see

00:28:34   what's happening or you can get a little thing that appears on your coffee table while you're,

00:28:39   like, as you said, Myke, again, who cares? Seems like a dumb idea to me. Not to poo-poo people

00:28:47   trying different stuff, but I've seen so many, like, extend beyond the show kind of gimmicks,

00:28:53   and this feels like one of them. That's just like, if this is, the way this article describes it,

00:28:59   I don't think if it's necessarily like this, like, the idea that it's supposed to be synced up with

00:29:03   the content, like, because that would, if that's the case, like, don't make people not watch the

00:29:09   show, right? Yeah, and if it's a little, like, AR sticker kind of thing that you get for watching

00:29:16   the show or something like that, I'm not sure that is any better. I don't think people want that.

00:29:22   What this feels like to me is like, hey kids, marketing material is yay! And it's like,

00:29:28   of characters you don't care about, right? Like, you know, because you've got to imagine,

00:29:33   like, when you see this stuff from other people, like, Google have done this before,

00:29:37   and they kind of integrate things where young people might be interested in them,

00:29:41   right? So you might get, like, Stranger Things or, like, Spider-Man or whatever, right? You can kind

00:29:50   of see that a little bit more, but like, who is watching For All Mankind and being like, oh man,

00:29:56   I really wished I could put, like, the characters for all mankind in my Instagram stories. Like,

00:30:02   it's not a thing that people want to do. This feels to me like there was a directive from

00:30:06   Up High that, like, every division in Apple needs to come up with some kind of AR/VR strategy,

00:30:10   and this is the one that the TV division came up with. Right, and it'll end up being kind of

00:30:15   nothing. And, you know, it's not to say that you couldn't use AR in an interesting way for a TV

00:30:21   show or a movie, but it would have to be something that would almost emerge from the content and have

00:30:30   to be baked in at that level. Like, if there was an episode on the moon of For All Mankind where

00:30:36   there was a sort of, like, strategy going on and they kept looking at the screen of, like,

00:30:41   where everybody is on the surface of the moon and where they need to get to and all of that,

00:30:45   and you could turn your coffee table into that map. Like, literally the surface of the moon with

00:30:51   little dots for where everybody is while you're watching the episode. Like, I can pitch that as

00:30:56   being like, oh, that might be interesting, although even then you're taking your focus away from the

00:31:00   show. But at least it would be kind of like an interesting thing, but that's, like, not that

00:31:04   interesting and the best example I can come up with and that's why this is not.

00:31:08   The best I could come up with would require the headset, which would be, like, show me

00:31:14   what is effectively a director's commentary, but visually. Like, as I'm watching the show,

00:31:20   point out things to me, right? But this is all for rewatching. I don't want this happening while I'm

00:31:26   watching it for the first time. In this report, German says that Apple are currently considering

00:31:32   to keep a free trial offer available for a shorter period of time for TV+ because we're about a month

00:31:38   and a bit away before we all start paying for it. And by the way, I think we'll try and mention this

00:31:45   as the time gets closer, if you're using it, you are opted in to pay unless you say otherwise.

00:31:50   Don't forget that. So if you don't want it, make sure you cancel it because the rules,

00:31:55   if you looked in the terms and conditions, very clear that it was an opt out. So if you bought a

00:32:02   new one, I think it launched in late October, early November was when people got into it. So

00:32:07   it's not that far away from now. Two months. The expirations begin in two months. And Apple today

00:32:15   announced Mariah Carey's magical Christmas special from the rare Apple announced PR release for a TV+

00:32:24   thing. Usually these things get out in the media first, but it says, quote, "An exclusive holiday

00:32:28   event from worldwide superstar and multi-platinum, multi-Grammy award-winning artist Mariah Carey,

00:32:34   which will debut globally on Apple TV+ this holiday season. This new special is set to

00:32:39   premiere on the heels of the 25th anniversary of Carey's iconic number one holiday anthem,

00:32:44   All I Want for Christmas is You, and will feature the legendary icon and a star-studded lineup of

00:32:49   surprise guest appearances in a magical holiday journey to enliven the Christmas spirit around

00:32:55   the world. I have to say, I kind of love the idea that streaming services are experimenting with

00:33:00   ways of doing the Christmas special, the TV Christmas special. That's the thing like Netflix

00:33:06   did that movie, or, well, it wasn't even a movie, that special with Bill Murray. It was actually

00:33:11   pretty good. Yeah, it was fun. Yeah. Yeah. And it's got, it's got like a lot of special guest stars

00:33:16   and, and, uh, yeah. So I think it's fun that they're doing this. This is, of course it's Mariah

00:33:22   Carey, uh, who is slowly transforming into the living embodiment of Christmas, thanks to that

00:33:30   one song. In like 200 years, people won't talk about Santa Claus anymore. No. They will talk

00:33:38   about Mariah Carey. Yeah. Maybe like they'll, they'll mix it all up and it'll be like Santa

00:33:42   Carey is coming to town and all she wants for Christmas is you. I said that a little too

00:33:48   threateningly, but anyway, you get my point. They also have a Christmas movie, which I don't remember

00:33:54   off the top of my head, but I think is starring Wolf Farrell. Do you remember that? This was

00:33:59   commissioned like last year around that time. The funny thing, I mean, we'll see if they made it,

00:34:04   right? Yeah. If they were able to make it, but the idea, I love the idea that, um, streaming services

00:34:10   have to, they're kind of combining the idea of the TV Christmas special with the idea of the,

00:34:16   the holiday themed movie and like try, try this stuff out. It's great. The beauty of it

00:34:20   is that you commissioned the movie and you premiere it and then you can have people watch it every

00:34:25   year. So that's why we have so many. That's why there's so much Christmas create a classic and

00:34:30   then it becomes part of the cannon. If you hit it, you can that, that, that will pay off for years to

00:34:37   come if you hit it right. And they don't all hit, but when they do, they, uh, they will really pay

00:34:43   off and you can recycle them every year. And this is the plot of about a boy, by the way. So anyway,

00:34:48   uh, it was a Christmas Carol musical with Wolf and Ryan Reynolds. They commissioned that in

00:34:54   October of last year. I reckon they'll probably have done what they needed the principal.

00:34:58   I don't know. Uh, so that's upstream. So we of course now move into the other regularly scheduled

00:35:06   uh, content of every episode. We are really segmented. This show is so segmented, uh, so much

00:35:13   format for us to stick to every week. Let's talk about Epic. Okay. I don't know how much longer

00:35:19   we're going to keep doing this, but there's still stuff happening. That's worth talking about. Yeah.

00:35:23   It feels like maybe we're running out of things to talk about that, that this is going into the,

00:35:27   into the courts and the wheels of justice slowly every week. And then things keep happening. So I

00:35:35   know this is the story of the summer. Um, basically to bring you up to speed, epic one, a temporary

00:35:43   restraining order, which stopped Apple from terminating the developer account relating

00:35:47   to the unreal engine. So the concern of developers, um, not being able to access unreal is currently

00:35:54   not a thing that people need to worry about. Um, Apple did do what they promised. They terminated

00:36:00   Epic games as developer account on August 28th. So people can no longer download any of Epic's games.

00:36:07   This includes obviously Fortnite, but some others including like infinity blade, which Apple would

00:36:12   feature every single year. Um, it doesn't remove the game. So there were a lot of questions, right?

00:36:18   We didn't know what would actually happen when this happened. And we have the answers now. So

00:36:22   it doesn't remove the game from anybody's devices, but you can't re download them. So,

00:36:28   right. Which means when you upgrade your device, unless there's a, yeah, I'm not sure if it'll even

00:36:33   transfer over. Right. So I bet it won't buy a new device. No more Fortnite. Uh, the new Fortnite

00:36:40   season is not playable on iOS. Um, we knew this. What I didn't know is that the new season features

00:36:46   Marvel superheroes as a thing, which is I reckon a pretty, pretty opportune time to do it because

00:36:52   it's probably content that people want to play. Right. So like, it's not just a new season of

00:36:57   Fortnite. It's a new season of Fortnite, including Marvel characters. Um, on the day that they

00:37:03   removed it, Apple was promoting, uh, the PUBG mobile upcoming update for iOS. In case you're

00:37:09   not familiar, uh, PUBG, which is Player Unknown's Battleground was the originator, basically of the

00:37:15   battle royale gameplay that Fortnite emulated. And like, because Fortnite was not a battle royale

00:37:22   game when it started. Um, so PUBG was kind of the originator of that. You could say that they were

00:37:27   competitors, but really there's no competition, but it was still kind of funny that like, there's

00:37:31   this update coming for PUBG. It's not out yet. It comes out in like a week and a bit, but Apple

00:37:36   chose to promote it on the day that they got rid of Fortnite. That was not a coincidence. Um, and

00:37:42   of course, now that they have no developer account, this is an interesting wrinkle. Epic cannot process

00:37:48   payments via an app purchase. So all transactions in their iOS app currently go through Epic system

00:37:55   exclusively. So what I find in like a funny roundabout way, Apple is now ensuring by doing

00:38:02   this that all Fortnite players use an alternate payment method for purchases in the application,

00:38:08   because Apple's method is no longer available to Epic. For those who are using this, you know,

00:38:13   not current season version on iOS, right? Which is a small group, but it's going to be a decline

00:38:20   in number. And you know, like I've, I've seen people talking about this and I do find it as

00:38:24   an interesting thing. Like, are there going to be people, are they going to be kids that

00:38:32   want a different device now? I don't know. Like, but it could be a thing, you know, like,

00:38:36   it's the biggest game. Uh, one of the biggest games, like it could, I mean, is it going to be

00:38:44   noticeable? Probably not. But is there a thing where this is the type of stuff that turns some

00:38:51   people away from Apple? Yeah, possibly, but we're not really going to know the answers to that,

00:38:56   but it is this whole thing, this whole thing that Apple's up to at the moment, um, not just in

00:39:03   relation to Fortnite, but all of the stuff that we've been talking about over the last couple of

00:39:07   months, um, about app review and stuff like I continue to think that Apple is playing a very

00:39:14   peculiar game. Yeah. Uh, but where are we going to go from here? So more time in court, the

00:39:20   restraining order, uh, about the unreal engine based, uh, account developer account is just

00:39:26   temporary. They're going to be back in September to create a final ruling on it. And then of course,

00:39:31   there's the original lawsuit, but that's going to take time. Yeah. All these things take time.

00:39:35   I wrote a piece last week at Mac world about this and I tried to take a different approach to it,

00:39:39   which is so much of this is sort of like, I'm with Epic, I'm with Apple. Everybody wants to like,

00:39:45   pick their side and who they're rooting for. And so I just wanted to take a step back and sort of

00:39:49   list all the things that we could get out of this from the user's perspective. And in doing that,

00:39:54   you know, basically what I found is, um, both sides have arguments about ways that they can

00:40:02   improve things for users. And that's the, that's the challenge here is that I don't,

00:40:07   I don't look at this and say, I want Epic to win everything because everything that will happen

00:40:12   will be great. And I don't want Apple to win because everything will be great. Neither of

00:40:15   those is true. So, you know, the ones I came up with and we've talked about a lot of this stuff

00:40:20   is making it easier to buy stuff in apps is good for consumers. My examples are always Amazon,

00:40:25   the Kindle app and the Comixology app. Like if, if, if I can buy a movie in the Prime Video app,

00:40:32   why can't I buy it in the Comixology app? Why can't I buy a comic? And the answer is because Apple

00:40:38   made a very specific rule that allowed Prime Video to do in-app purchase, uh, using Amazon's method.

00:40:45   But only that category. Why? You know, because they wanted to make it as narrow as possible,

00:40:52   and they were making a deal with Amazon, but it's like Epic saying, we want to be able to offer

00:40:57   other payment methods in apps. Like I can see how that's good for consumers. Um, and if Apple has to

00:41:04   compete, it means potentially that prices will go down and that Apple will be pushed to compete and

00:41:09   make their experience even better in order to have people use Apple's system. So potentially you could

00:41:14   have lower prices and better experiences at the same time. You open up the doors to let anybody

00:41:21   do payment processing inside an app, and you are risking, uh, fraud and scams in terms of apps. And

00:41:27   in terms of payment processing, because when you spend money on the store now, you know,

00:41:31   it's going through Apple. And so you have a level of confidence that maybe you don't have.

00:41:36   And we could argue like some of the shady apps in the app store already, and they're using

00:41:41   subscriptions and in-app purchases and, you know, but at least you're not worried about your credit

00:41:45   card being stolen because who knows where it's going. Um, so Apple does provide some security

00:41:52   there. Um, then again, I, you know, you can list all the apps that just don't exist on iOS that

00:41:58   exist on the Mac. Because Apple's just decided we're not going to let those exist. And the

00:42:04   video game streaming services is a good example, but there are plenty of others. Emulators is one,

00:42:08   but like there are lots of them. There are, they're a backup utility, right? Like you can

00:42:12   use iCloud backup. There's no competing backup for iOS devices. And why? Because they're not allowed.

00:42:17   They're not allowed. That's it. They're just not allowed. And so there are lots of apps that never

00:42:22   get created, not just the ones that Apple has outlawed, but the ones that Apple has said,

00:42:26   you know, the developers have this chilling effect, right? Which is, I don't know if Apple

00:42:31   will approve this and you can work with Apple and you can talk to them about it, but how many apps

00:42:36   just never get developed because the developers are like, it's not worth the risk. Yeah. I had

00:42:41   an interesting thought about this a couple of days ago. Workflow. That was an application that we

00:42:47   thought would never get accepted into the app store. And my understanding is barely did right.

00:42:53   Like they had to change a lot of it and constantly had issues with app review because they were trying

00:42:58   to do too much. Apple bought that company because the app was so good. Right? So on that line,

00:43:06   think of how many great things could have existed. And this one only existed because the Workflow

00:43:13   team were a bunch of like very smart, very excitable young people. So they just went for

00:43:20   it anyway. Right? They're just like, oh, screw it. We'll go for it. But there could be companies

00:43:24   that have ideas that are larger companies that can't risk the company or risk a big part of the

00:43:29   company on creating this idea because if they spend all this time and money and effort on it,

00:43:35   it might not get accepted. And then they wasted their time. Right? And so on that note, right,

00:43:40   like some things are so good that they become part of the operating system, but they were always on

00:43:46   the edge of what could be approved in the first place. So what are we missing out on? What are

00:43:51   we missing? And what is Apple missing out on? Because they're not truly turning over the whole

00:43:56   idea of like, we can't wait to see what you'll do with it. They always say to developers, especially

00:44:02   provided what it does is within the rules that we set. And that's the challenge, right? Is I do

00:44:08   believe that if you have something that is an idea that is going to push the limits, you can talk to

00:44:14   people in developer relations and you can get them to say, yes, this is okay. And you can find a path.

00:44:20   Although again, that even then there have been stories of people who've been assured by Apple

00:44:26   that this is okay. And then when they submit it, it gets rejected. Yeah. That path is always a

00:44:30   temporary path. It is. And it is a risk you're taking. And that's a huge investment to make on

00:44:35   something that you don't have another really if Apple says no to your iOS app, there's nowhere

00:44:41   else to go. Right. And so how many opportunities does Apple miss by having these things that push

00:44:47   the boundaries and they just, they're never even discussed beyond internally somewhere because

00:44:54   there's too much fear of Apple. And let me tell you, what's been going on this summer is not

00:44:58   making that better. It's making it worse even now. And it's like that, I think that's a real crime.

00:45:04   I was using Scriptable this weekend. Scriptable is an app that lets you write JavaScript scripts

00:45:12   and they run in iOS. And that's one of those things that I believe they had a difficult time

00:45:17   getting that approved. Pythonista with Python scripts, same kind of deal, right? That there

00:45:21   was a period where Apple's like, no, there's no code or programming on the store. And then,

00:45:26   you know, with all of these, it turned into kind of a, well, you can't have it preloaded. And like,

00:45:32   they've progressed over time, but all of these apps are kind of amazing and they really extend

00:45:40   what iOS can do. And yet there are more out there below the waterline that either can never be put

00:45:50   in the store or will never even be developed because of this. And, you know, not only does

00:45:56   Apple lose, but the users lose by not having that stuff available. So, you know, that's something

00:46:01   that having Apple have a complete lock on the store, you gotta say that is an issue that harms

00:46:08   consumers. But on the other side, like, allowing sideloading is a malware vector. And having other

00:46:15   app stores that you don't know who is setting them up, you might trust them, you might not. But like,

00:46:19   at least Apple, I think to a certain degree, is preventing bad stuff from getting on the platform,

00:46:27   or at least a lot of it. The fact is that there are alternatives like notarization,

00:46:34   which Apple is doing on the Mac, although there was a report I saw today about how Apple

00:46:37   actually approved a bit of malware. It got the notarization system approved it. And then when

00:46:43   they were notarization, it's not a person, right? It's a server, it's looking for certain things,

00:46:47   but if you can get something through that's malware, it'll still run without any warning.

00:46:52   Apple was able then to kill that when they were notified that it was malware because they can

00:46:57   revoke certification of it and then it just won't launch. But, you know, the unexpected consequences

00:47:03   of being told you have to allow sideloading, you know, I do think that Apple's argument that the

00:47:09   platform would have more threats is accurate. And would Apple even be allowed to do something

00:47:17   like notarization if they're put under a court order or an order from a regulator? Would something

00:47:26   even like notarization, which they're doing on the Mac, be considered too much intervention on

00:47:30   Apple's part? And if so, then you would even lose that as a possibility. So, you know, the end of my

00:47:37   little piece that I wrote and my little monologue here is I think the truth is that what frustrates

00:47:46   me about this scenario is I think Epic's arguments are self-serving, but they have an aspect that

00:47:52   absolutely would be better for users. Apple's arguments are self-serving, but there is an

00:47:58   aspect to them that is accurate. And the truth is in the middle. And in my mind, the best way

00:48:04   for the user is for Apple to make changes that benefit the user without being forced,

00:48:12   because I think that if they're forced, you're going to, like I mentioned with notarization,

00:48:17   you're going to end up with a law or a ruling that doesn't entirely understand the ramifications of

00:48:24   what it's doing. And we've seen this time and again with technology, you will end up in a place

00:48:29   where people are like, "Why can't they do this?" And they're like, "They can't. They were told not

00:48:33   to by the courts and they can't go back on it." It's like, but this is a very fundamental thing.

00:48:37   Well, they're not allowed to do that anymore and we all have to pay the price for it. So,

00:48:41   will Apple do something like that? You know, that's, if I'm rooting for anything in this

00:48:47   battle, it is that Apple feels under so much pressure that it has to make a bunch of concessions

00:48:54   that are more thought out and benefit users without having a bunch of downsides.

00:49:04   Whether they will actually do that or just fight to the bitter end, I still don't know because

00:49:09   they're certainly behaving like a company that is going to just fight this till the end and they

00:49:13   want to continue complete control and they don't really, aren't really concerned by how they're

00:49:18   being viewed by a lot of people on the outside now. But anyway, my big point is, you know, Epic

00:49:25   and Apple both are making statements that have truth in them but also have ramifications that

00:49:33   they don't want to talk about that are bad for users. And that's why when I look at this whole

00:49:38   story, the story of the summer, I'm like, "Okay, like I want Apple to change some of its policies

00:49:45   because I think they're bad for users but I'm not sure that what Epic is doing is going to lead

00:49:49   to what the most optimistic people think it's going to lead to."

00:49:53   - I am losing faith in the thought that Apple will make changes of their own accord.

00:50:01   - Yeah, I mean, certainly their court, you know, their court statements are very,

00:50:05   their court statements are extreme. - They're making a lot of very

00:50:07   bold statements. But even the things that they're making in the press, right? They're making their

00:50:12   case very clear and their case is not what I want it to be. Which is that they're gonna overhaul this

00:50:23   and think about it under the guise of where we are in 2020, not where we were in 2007,

00:50:30   2008. Very different and nothing changed. - Yeah, they're not in that era anymore.

00:50:36   The era of Apple in 2008 is not Apple of 2020. And I agree, I think their self-image

00:50:43   doesn't match reality. I think they are still using a playbook and still think of Apple

00:50:50   as something that is not what Apple is now. Either that, we should say this, either that

00:50:55   or they're just greedy and evil. They don't care. - I think that's part of the new image.

00:50:59   - One of those. - Jason, it's greed. Like it is.

00:51:03   There is an element of greed in this because they don't need the money.

00:51:07   - Well, yeah. Like I said, Steve Jobs came back when Apple was in really dire shape and Steve

00:51:15   Jobs always felt this level of, you can call it greed, but certainly what it is, is this feeling

00:51:22   like Apple is owed for creating, yes, for creating its amazing everything. Anyone who benefits from

00:51:31   it financially owes Apple. Like actually owes Apple. And Steve Jobs always felt that and that

00:51:39   has continued. The challenge is, at some point early in the process, it's like, well, of course,

00:51:45   they put in all this work and they built this product that is groundbreaking and they built

00:51:48   this app store that has changed how consumers interact with software purchases. Of course,

00:51:53   they should get paid for it. And then you look, and that's 2008. And then you look at 2020 and

00:51:57   they're like the most valuable company in the world with hundreds of billions of dollars of cash

00:52:01   and they look like a greedy bully. And so the challenge is, that's on a continuum, right? And

00:52:12   yeah, we can portray it as, well, they're just greedy and evil, or we could portray it as,

00:52:20   well, culturally, their culture is from a time when they weren't and they don't realize it.

00:52:27   But the truth is, probably some of them are greedy and evil and some of them are just tied into the

00:52:31   culture. And we do live in a world where giant profit-seeking, publicly-owned corporations

00:52:38   giving up some potential profit is not what they're supposed to do, right? They're supposed to be

00:52:45   as greedy as possible on one level. And that's a problem. But I keep coming back to the pragmatic

00:52:54   aspect of this, which is somebody at Apple needs to read the room. And they're not.

00:52:59   Look, at the end of the day, they can be greedy and that is perfectly fine. I think the whole

00:53:06   reason why there's so many of us are getting so caught up in this is we have sided with Apple for

00:53:13   as long as we have because the beliefs of the company seem to match ours. And this is one where

00:53:19   it's like there's starting to be a splinter amongst the community that we are and what Apple

00:53:26   is wanting to do, which is to extract all the money and that starts to feel like it doesn't

00:53:31   make sense anymore. So my feeling is, look, do it if you want to. That's perfectly fine.

00:53:36   But my opinion of Apple as a company is changing. And I'm perfectly comfortable with that. But

00:53:43   expect me to be more critical of you as an entity. I will still use and love the product, but I stop

00:53:50   aligning my own personal values of yours. Yeah, there's only so much goodwill you can

00:53:56   generate with your clean energy and environmental and all the other things that Apple does is like,

00:54:01   we want to leave this world a better place than we found it. Those are offsets. But if you are

00:54:09   perceived in a way that Epic is certainly trying to get everybody to perceive Apple as, then those

00:54:17   things get devalued. Those things become, well, okay, I'll put it this way. Those things may

00:54:24   always have been a smokescreen. They're definitely PR, but I do also think that there are some

00:54:30   fundamental beliefs Apple has. But they are seen as more as a cynical ploy, even than they're

00:54:36   intended, the more stuff that's perceived as bad deeds that you do as a company.

00:54:42   And so Apple has gotten away for a long time with being able to say, well, our heart's in the right

00:54:49   place and look at these things we're doing. And you don't get the benefit of the doubt

00:54:55   when people think that you're a tech giant that is trying to destroy all competition.

00:55:03   Just from a PR standpoint. So it's difficult. Again, yes, they are well within their rights

00:55:10   to insist on every dollar that they feel they deserve. But they risk people thinking of them

00:55:19   less charitably, and they risk governments and regulators and judges coming down hard on them

00:55:26   and telling them what to do, which I go back to that book settlement. That's not good.

00:55:34   As a company, and this is where the fiduciary responsibility changes a little bit if you're

00:55:40   Tim Cook, which is, I know you want all the money, but what you really don't want, I've said this

00:55:47   before, I'm going to say it again, maybe even every week, what you really don't want is an

00:55:51   outside force telling you here is a new set of rules, an outside force that doesn't really

00:55:55   understand your business and doesn't understand all the ramifications of what they're doing,

00:55:59   but now they're in charge of big parts of your business and how you have to,

00:56:02   you don't want that. That's an existential crisis for Apple. So at some point you got to get down

00:56:07   off the horse and change your ways, not because you want to change them, but because the alternative

00:56:16   is so much worse. And I think the scary thing about looking at Apple right now is there seems

00:56:23   to be a streak within Apple, at least thus far, of resistance to change, even if it means that

00:56:28   they're going to face an existential threat and their products and the quality of their products

00:56:32   and the safety of their customers could get kind of wrecked permanently because of their sort of

00:56:40   spiteful attempt to hang on to as much cash as possible and as much control as possible.

00:56:45   - And what makes this so wild, Jason, is that the company culture that we talk about

00:56:49   is informed by the fact that this company nearly went out of business

00:56:53   right? So why are you playing with things that could really affect you as a company,

00:56:59   which would be a government coming in and stripping out a big part of your business?

00:57:04   Because you don't know what they're going to tell you to do. So the idea of playing with fire to

00:57:10   this level doesn't jive with this idea of trying to protect the company. - And again, I should say,

00:57:18   this may be Apple doing its existing Apple thing, which is you never say anything,

00:57:24   you never let anyone see you sweat, you never show a crack until the moment when you change,

00:57:28   right? It's the famous, nobody wants an iPod with video, here's an iPod with video,

00:57:34   but this time we really mean it. So it's possible that Apple knows that they need to do this

00:57:41   strategy, but they don't want it to be when the heat is on, they don't want Epic to be seen as

00:57:46   a victor, they want to do it in a way where they could look like they invented it, that may be,

00:57:51   but things are on fire right now and it's not going well for them and maybe it will settle down,

00:57:57   maybe it will, but I don't know, we'll find out. - This episode is brought to you by fully.

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01:00:06   And all of Real AFM. Lots of product rumors for you, Jason.

01:00:10   I'm confused, but we have, welcome to our new segment, Conflicting Product Rumors.

01:00:17   All right. So according to a report from the China Times, we have a few stories today.

01:00:21   One is that Apple is said to be producing their own custom designed graphics processes for an

01:00:27   Apple Silicon iMac planned for the second half of 2021. Reports say this will be the first ARM

01:00:34   iMac, but Ming-Chi Kuo has suggested that there will be one this year plus a MacBook Pro.

01:00:40   This is quite confusing because what are in the other Macs? So other laptops,

01:00:48   what graphics processes they're using? Are they just the embedded ones like iOS devices,

01:00:55   or are they going to use Intel ones? Are there no dedicated graphics processes before the iMac?

01:01:01   If that's the case, what happens to the MacBook Pro? It's all very confusing. So there's two choices,

01:01:04   right? Which is Apple could be using the... The way I'm choosing to read this rumor is that Apple

01:01:10   is building their own external GPU in order to soup up certain Macs with like much better graphics

01:01:19   performance than their integrated graphics that they've been building for a while now

01:01:24   that are on iOS devices. When you say external, you still mean inside of the case, but like the...

01:01:30   Yeah, I mean a discrete GPU, I guess is the phrase, right? Discrete GPU, which leads to options

01:01:37   for existing Macs between now and then if this report is correct, which is one, they're using

01:01:43   GPUs that are from existing PC GPU companies, like the discrete GPU that's in the 16-inch MacBook

01:01:55   Pro, for example, right? Or they're not, and they're just using the embedded GPU's,

01:02:00   the embedded graphics, integrated graphics that's on the existing chips that Apple designs.

01:02:05   Those are the options here. And I think if it's a MacBook Pro that they're coming out with this

01:02:09   fall, they must be using... Well, I don't know, but like I keep thinking, well, maybe that they've

01:02:14   built that to integrate with an external GPU, a discrete GPU. You know what? Maybe I need to

01:02:20   actually say the second one because it will help us have this whole conversation because...

01:02:24   It gets weirder folks, it gets weirder.

01:02:26   So the China Times is also reporting that the first Apple Silicon Mac will be the return of

01:02:31   the 12-inch MacBook, which makes some sense, set to debut this year, but it will feature an A14X.

01:02:38   So not its own chip, right? Like it is a... What will be, as is said in this report from the China

01:02:47   Times, the chip that will be in the next iPad Pro. So they will share this chip. So when I read this,

01:02:54   I was like, huh, that isn't what I expected. But then I also thought, well, maybe not every Mac

01:02:59   needs its own Apple Silicon chip. Maybe a 12-inch MacBook would do perfectly fine. In fact,

01:03:07   fantastically on an A14X.

01:03:09   So here's the thing. Ming-Chi Kuo's accuracy has made us sort of believe that what was going to

01:03:20   happen as a 13-inch MacBook Pro and an iMac were coming out this fall or early next year.

01:03:24   And that may yet happen. But what's funny about this report is it's mostly confusing because it

01:03:30   conflicts with Ming-Chi Kuo and he's proven to be very reliable. But this report is sort of what we

01:03:38   thought would have happened. Well, this also makes sense. Right before Ming-Chi Kuo's report,

01:03:43   I think everybody was figuring and honestly, everybody's been figuring for like five years now

01:03:49   that the first ARM Mac would be a 12-inch MacBook. Right? Everybody's thought that. And you could use

01:03:56   an iPad processor in it. And I did all that math with Apple Silicon. Like if you look at what the

01:04:01   A14X is shaping up to be just based on trends, that's a fast laptop all on its own with just the

01:04:09   iPad processor in it. It also makes sense because it gives Apple a little more time to roll out.

01:04:13   Because remember, they're rolling out these new processors for the iPad and for the iPhone this

01:04:17   fall. Having to roll out a new Mac processor that is different from them simultaneously,

01:04:26   that's a lot. Right? That's a lot. So could you get away with doing an initial release that's

01:04:30   using the same chip as in the iPad Pro? And then next year, you do a A14-based processor that's got

01:04:40   a little bit more for the Macs in 2021. It all actually makes more sense than Munchy Kuo's report.

01:04:47   That was Mark Gurman's report. That the first Mac chips will be based on the work of the A14.

01:04:54   Right. That's logical.

01:04:57   That then makes sense that you can either use that as a starting point to then build

01:05:01   specific features or you can use that as a starting point to just make this Mac. Now look,

01:05:06   this MacBook, it is rumoured, would have 15 to 20 hour battery life. Now that is unbelievable.

01:05:15   Right. And this is the thing we were talking about, we've been talking about this for ages,

01:05:19   right? That when they do this, they have to be able to say, "And now look what it can do."

01:05:25   And this is one of those things where it's like, "Here you go. Here's, as of before now,

01:05:31   unprecedented laptop battery time for our products. What about double? Do you like that?

01:05:36   Because it will do that." And look, an A14X will be more than enough. And maybe what we end up with

01:05:45   is this kind of dual approach where you have for maybe consumer grade laptops or consumer grade

01:05:55   products, even the entry level iMac, they run on the most powerful versions of the iOS chips.

01:06:02   Yes. And possibly with integrated graphics, right?

01:06:04   And that makes sense, right? Because if they run on metal and stuff like this,

01:06:09   it's going to be more than enough for what most people need for their Macs.

01:06:13   Just to be clear, the A14X multi-processor, if it grows at the rate that the A series chips

01:06:19   have been growing, the A14X in multi-processor performance would probably be as fast or faster

01:06:28   than the 8-core 16-inch MacBook Pro. That's what we're talking about here.

01:06:32   So very serious stuff, right? Yes.

01:06:35   And then for the professional products, you have distinctly tweaked and tuned processes.

01:06:45   More cores, support for discrete GPUs.

01:06:50   Last time, the idea of it's going to be plugged in, right? And then you can change the way that

01:06:56   you build the chip and what you're optimizing for. So, you know, like, look, this is completely

01:07:02   right. We had our own thinking of how this would go, and it was this product. But then there were

01:07:09   some rumors from a credible source that changed our thinking. Plus coupled with the marketing

01:07:14   messages that Apple have been saying. But there is absolutely nothing wrong with them taking

01:07:20   for them really to be like the iPad Pro and the Mac. We're now going to make a chip that meets

01:07:26   both of these. It's not that like we're going to take the iPhone chip and tweak it to the iPad.

01:07:31   We're going to make a chip which is based on what we make for the iPhone,

01:07:35   but we tweak it for the most power for these products. Because really the iPad Pro and the

01:07:41   entry-level laptop, they should be comparable in performance. Yeah, I mean, I could argue that the

01:07:47   iPad Pro should have more power than the entry-level Mac laptop, but certainly they should be in the

01:07:52   ballpark. And this is, I agree, I wonder if Ming-Chi Kuo's sources, because he hedged a little

01:07:58   bit and also said 2021, I wonder if his sources are actually pointing to another wave of Apple

01:08:02   Silicon that will probably actually be early next year and won't be the first one out the door,

01:08:07   and that this MacBook is the first one out the door. It'll be interesting to see who's right

01:08:10   here because you're right, the China Times report feels very much like conventional wisdom almost

01:08:17   about how Apple would lead into Apple Silicon. And that would be a great product for holiday quarter.

01:08:24   Having a super thin, light, fast, long battery life, a 12-inch laptop would be amazing. And it

01:08:30   logically makes sense to have the first Apple Silicon Mac be a Mac that doesn't replace

01:08:36   anything in the lineup. There is some logic to that, that the first one is its own thing.

01:08:43   Because there isn't a MacBook now, there just isn't one. It's not a MacBook Air,

01:08:48   it's not a MacBook Pro, it's not an iMac. This is the MacBook. Because the MacBook for a while,

01:08:56   actually pretty much for most of its life, has always started as like, this is the computer of

01:09:03   the future, right? In its own way, right? Like, it's doing things. Think back to the original

01:09:09   MacBook launch, they literally described it as, "We know how to design an iPad, let's apply the iPad

01:09:20   design language and understanding and make a Mac." Like, from the beginning, the MacBook was

01:09:26   considered, "From the people who brought you the iPad, here's a laptop." Right? That was always the

01:09:31   premise. To like the polycarbonate MacBook. To the plastic MacBook, yeah, sure. You know, but like,

01:09:35   yes, you're right. It's a thread that has run through this. So to have this, that's why we

01:09:41   always expected that this would be the prototypical ARM Mac, right? So it's fascinating. So I can't

01:09:48   decide whether I hear this China Times report and I'm like, "Aha, this makes more sense." Or if I

01:09:53   hear this China Times report and I think, "Oh, thank you China Times for validating my dream of

01:09:59   how I thought this would go and not the cold reality of how Meng Qiquo says this is going to

01:10:04   go." I don't know which one is, but it would make sense. It all does follow. It all does follow.

01:10:10   There's also some somewhat sketchy rumors of what could be an update to the iPad Air that I,

01:10:19   that even though they seem like kind of similarly, like I'm not sure what I think about this stuff,

01:10:23   some from 9to5Mac, some from MacRumors, it's like this could be a potential pamphlet,

01:10:28   one of these is a schematic. I don't know. But there's enough in here where it's like,

01:10:32   I could see that as being the next iPad. So it's not sure whether this is replacing the iPad Air

01:10:38   or just the iPad, but it's probably a mixture of both. A 10.8 inch screen with smaller bezels,

01:10:45   flat sides, USB-C, single camera on the back, smart connector on the back, maybe Magic Keyboard

01:10:51   support, no Face ID, but Touch ID in the power button. That lines up to be pretty much what I

01:10:58   would expect from the next generation of standard iPad. Because it's modernizing it, it's giving it

01:11:06   the features that it needs, but it's not going too far. And also, I want Touch ID in the power

01:11:12   button of my iPhone. I would love that. Can you imagine if they somehow managed to pull that off

01:11:20   for this next iPhone? People would go wild for that, right? - Yeah, that would be a good one.

01:11:26   I think this is a good rumor in showing us, like, it's a rumor, I'm sure they have sources,

01:11:34   it also fits the extrapolation of what Apple has done before, which is Apple is on this kick of

01:11:40   pulling up the lower end iPads and giving them features that the higher end iPads

01:11:45   have had for a little while. So creating an iPad Air that is cheaper than the smaller iPad Pro,

01:11:51   but still uses the accessories for the smaller iPad Pro, including with the smart connector rumor,

01:11:59   right, including the keyboard. - Hmm. I wonder if they've been big enough physically. - I don't know.

01:12:06   I mean, you would think they would make it so that they all use the same accessories. Like,

01:12:12   they do that now, right? There are accessories that are shared. So, interesting rumor, but the

01:12:19   bigger point is, you know, they cut costs, there's no Face ID, there's no, you know, LIDAR camera,

01:12:26   there's none of that stuff, but maybe it's the A12X or the A12Z in it, and so it's gonna have

01:12:33   the speed of the current iPads, but keep in mind those current iPads are gonna get replaced

01:12:37   probably next year with way more advanced iPads, and then this one will sit there for three or four

01:12:42   years with this technology in it. That's very Apple, that's very Tim Cook's Apple to do that

01:12:48   sort of thing, and I like it because it means that Apple is constantly making that mid-range iPad

01:12:56   better for people who want to take advantage of a lot of the features of the Pro, but where the Pro

01:13:01   is just too expensive. - I want an iPad Mini that's this, right? All of this stuff in an iPad Mini.

01:13:11   Like, not the smart connector, because I don't want to use a keyboard on there, but like,

01:13:16   get rid of the home button, you know, like, make the device physically smaller. - Make a modern

01:13:22   iPad Mini, essentially. - That's what I would like all of this on an iPad Mini, just for like,

01:13:28   general content type stuff, like, I think that would be a really cool iPad. I hope that they make

01:13:33   that. This episode is also brought to you by our friends over at Pingdom. Hey, do you have a website?

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01:14:52   continued support of this show and Relay FM. It's time for some #AskUpgradeQuestions.

01:15:00   There's the lasers I love the most. This one comes from Ryan. Ryan wants to know,

01:15:04   "How do you prepare for your Parsley game sessions both as a player and as the computer?"

01:15:09   Okay, we need to explain this.

01:15:10   I'm going to, but this is a legit question I liked, but also a great way for me to remind

01:15:16   our listeners that we have published our text adventure special for the year. Every year,

01:15:22   for Relay FM members, we join up with CGP Grey, the Cortex Podcast, and together we make a

01:15:29   wonderful text adventure where me and Grey are the players, Jason is the computer, and we do an audio

01:15:34   based text adventure with lots of wonderful editing. That is now available for Relay FM members.

01:15:39   All Relay FM members. So if you're not supporting upgrade or Cortex directly, but some other show

01:15:44   or no show in particular, you still get it. You still get it. You don't have to be very particular.

01:15:48   So if you are giving money to Relay anywhere, you can get that.

01:15:52   And I'll put a link in the show notes to the, it's called the crossover feed. So if you are

01:15:58   Relay FM member and you don't know where the feed is, just click that link and it will open

01:16:02   straight away. You log in and you can get the feed immediately, which is super awesome.

01:16:06   But if you do want to become a Relay FM member, you want to get the special and you want to get

01:16:12   ad free longer versions of upgrade, go to getupgradeplus.com and you can do that.

01:16:17   So Jason, how do you prepare for these specials?

01:16:19   Well, I don't prepare as much as I used to because I've run the game enough that I understand

01:16:26   generally how it works. I do try to read through the game. In this case, we were playing a game

01:16:31   that I, that we did on the game show podcast on the incomparable. So I've actually heard this

01:16:36   game being played. So I've, I've heard a play through and I've read the book because these are

01:16:44   from Jared Sorenson is the guy's name. Memento-Mori.com is his website. We'll put a link

01:16:51   in the show notes. You can buy as PDFs or even as a printed book, these little games and then run

01:16:57   them for groups. I guess I was going to say friends, groups of friends, I don't know,

01:17:01   outside socially distanced, you could probably run them, but you could definitely do it with

01:17:04   your family or do it on zoom or something like that. And it's like the style of an old text

01:17:08   adventure, but you know, you're reading it. So it's like something that's not as complex as

01:17:14   something like Dungeons and Dragons. It's just a straight up kind of like you, you take turns

01:17:18   ordering the computer to do something and then the computer tells you what happens. So I don't

01:17:23   do a lot beyond that at this point. It really is just sort of like reading over the story and,

01:17:29   and seeing where the details are and then and then making sure. And then I always miss something like

01:17:36   I always miss something like, Oh, I should have not done that on this part. And we take some of

01:17:41   that stuff out in the editing, but but yeah, I try to read through it. So I'm not surprised when

01:17:45   somebody tries something I know if they can or can't do it. So I can react in the moment instead

01:17:49   of saying, hold on guys while I look that up and come back a minute later. So this year I did more

01:17:55   preparation than I usually do. And I listened back to one of the previous years text adventure

01:18:01   before playing. Didn't really help me in any way. I hope that it would, but it didn't. The thing that

01:18:08   that I, the thing that we have learned the most in playing these games is to have the ability to draw

01:18:14   a map. You really need to be able to map it out. Um, I found that to be very helpful other than

01:18:21   that, the way that the way that I go into this, like I go into anything is going with an open mind

01:18:26   when you want to play any game and just know that you're just going to roll with the punches and

01:18:30   have fun. Like that's how you should play games, especially while playing stuff. Cause even though

01:18:34   these are text adventures, me and Greg can't help, but play them like we're all playing games.

01:18:38   Indeed. Stitch asks, given what's been learned from WWDC and other product launches in the age

01:18:44   of COVID, what products do you think will be in the September event and how do you think Apple

01:18:50   will present it? I think WWDC is a model and everybody thought it was successful. And I think

01:18:56   we're going to see that again. I think we're going to see a produced Apple presentation. They're

01:19:00   probably producing it right now that goes into the details of whatever products they choose to launch.

01:19:08   I think so they could, they could do a bunch of shorter things, but I think they want everybody's

01:19:13   attention. So my gut feeling is that they'll do an event. I know this is boring, but I think that

01:19:19   that there's still going to be some, uh, reflections of past choices in what Apple does.

01:19:25   So I think there's going to be a September event, you know, presumably in September,

01:19:29   but the iPhone event and they're going to have the new iPhones. Remember the rumors are there

01:19:34   going to be four of them. You think September, like, but super late September? I don't know.

01:19:38   I mean, it really, I, I, when I say a September event, I mean, what we've come to think of as a

01:19:43   September event, it's an iPhone event. It'll happen when I think what you want to do if your Apple is

01:19:49   not have it be so much time between your announcement and either availability or certainly

01:19:55   ability to order for these products. Cause you want it, you want people to get swept up in iPhone

01:19:59   excitement. And if they hold an event in a couple of weeks and then the stuff isn't available for

01:20:07   two months, I mean, yeah, like you could be an event in September that if the rumors are to be

01:20:14   relieved, the program version might not be available until November. Yeah. And there's

01:20:17   going to be, there's going to be some lateness there, but like, I think, I think if you're Apple,

01:20:21   you want to follow your existing plan, which is you're going to do an event and that Friday,

01:20:26   you're going to open orders and the following Friday, they're going to ship, right? If you're

01:20:30   more than, if you're more than, yeah, something, if you're more than two weeks out from shipping,

01:20:34   you probably shouldn't do your event then the beauty of it is there it's a prerecorded event.

01:20:38   So until they announced that they're doing it and they don't need anybody to make travel plans,

01:20:43   they can announce it the week of the day before. Like they don't, they don't need to spend a lot

01:20:48   of time pre-announcing it, which worries me about our draft, by the way, we're going to have to

01:20:52   figure that out. If they don't give us a week's notice, we're going to have to like do a bonus

01:20:54   draft episode just to get them in. I would think they would give a week's notice. So I would,

01:21:02   if they're, if they know they're not going to have products to ship until October, then maybe

01:21:06   they push it back to October. But I think what they want is that early event, that September

01:21:11   event, and it's going to be iPhone and it's going to be anything else that they've got. That's like

01:21:15   a consumer announcement that they want to make that's sort of broad. They could do iPads and

01:21:22   Macs in that event too, and just kind of combine everything into the big Apple fall product

01:21:28   showcase spectacular. And, you know, I think there's an argument to be made that you want

01:21:35   to roll. If you've got a Apple Silicon MacBook, that maybe what you want to do is put that in the

01:21:40   iPhone event, even though it's not an iPhone, just because there are more eyes on the iPhone event

01:21:44   than any other event Apple does. You could also argue that they'd be better off saving that for

01:21:49   an October event. Again, I'm using the term October event might not actually be in October.

01:21:54   They've done it like at Halloween before. So sometimes it's an, yeah, it's the later events,

01:22:00   the late October, early November, maybe event because iPads and Macs in that event aren't

01:22:06   overshadowed by the iPhones. So if I had to pick, that's what I'd say is they'll keep doing that

01:22:11   method where, you know, they'll do, um, the iPhone and then some other stuff they want to announce,

01:22:16   but they're going to hold the iPad and the Mac for later because they want to make a bigger splash,

01:22:22   even though they could make one big splash. I think the argument is I'd rather have an event

01:22:27   that people pay attention to, but maybe not as much as the iPhone that features the Mac

01:22:32   rather than have the Mac be a footnote to the iPhone, even though a lot of people would see it,

01:22:37   it would be a footnote. All the, all the news stories, all the conversations going to be about

01:22:41   the iPhone. It's not going to be about the Mac. And honestly, if you think the Mac is really hot,

01:22:45   do you want the Mac stealing away focus from a, maybe a little bit boring iPhone announcement?

01:22:52   Like, no, you don't want that either. So I think keeping them separate is probably the way to go,

01:22:57   but they'll look like WWDC, you know, I think that that's the model. I think it will look like that

01:23:03   for sure. I think they nailed it. And, and so doing more of that, where it's just around Apple park

01:23:08   and, uh, showing off their products, like they've shown they can do that. So do that again,

01:23:14   maybe we're pre drafting here, but I would say, uh, they will, they will have the first

01:23:19   Silicon Mac with the iPhone, similarly to what they've done with like the iPad pro in the past.

01:23:23   You want people to see it, put it in the iPhone event. So, well, that's, I, like I said, I think

01:23:28   that's a valid way to go. I think the challenge there is that it gets lost in the, in the iPhone.

01:23:33   And if you want to focus and the other thing is, do you want to produce two of these? Like

01:23:38   on one level, like what does it matter if you produce two of these, you get more hype that way.

01:23:42   And it's not like you're asking people to travel again. You're not, you can, you can, if, if you

01:23:46   say we're going to do a Mac segment and an iPad segment and an iPhone segment and all that, like,

01:23:50   why not do two shorter events spaced apart by three weeks and let everybody kind of digest

01:23:57   event one before you do an event, the second event, like why not spread it out a little bit?

01:24:03   But I, again, the counter argument is everybody, these events take longer to make. I'm sure they

01:24:09   do. I'm sure they do. But I guess what I'm saying is if you had all that content that you were going

01:24:12   to need to make anyway for, if the Mac is in the iPhone event, the counter argument would be,

01:24:18   take it out, give yourself a little more time and do it a month later. But both, both are valid.

01:24:25   If I had to pick, I would say there'll be two events. And if Myke had to pick, he'd say,

01:24:28   they're going to pile them all in the iPhone. So we'll see. Maybe that'll be a draft pick.

01:24:32   Okay. asks Myke, why didn't you tell Jason that you're into keyboards now? Yeah,

01:24:39   this came up because I was talking about keyboards and the members discord and you said,

01:24:45   Myke, why didn't you tell me that you're into keyboards now? And then Kate said,

01:24:48   okay, immediately followed that entire quote up with, uh, and I was going to upgrade. Well, so

01:24:54   you do kind of know because we did an episode of the show in January where I'd started to dip my

01:25:01   toe into it. Do you remember that? I was in, I remember it fondly because I was, I was in LA then

01:25:07   that was our Myke live from Hollywood episode. Right. So when I remember me sitting there and

01:25:13   looking out at this beautiful view, Oh, that trip, I'm just slight aside. So happy that I took that

01:25:19   trip. It was like in January. I think it was like late January. Um, because it was the last trip

01:25:25   that I got to take. Um, and it was a good one. Uh, so you did kind of know, but the thing you don't

01:25:31   know is like, I have, I'm very into keyboards now. Like very, very much into mechanical keyboards.

01:25:42   I know what that, I know what that lowering of the voice means. Cause I've been there and I've

01:25:46   spent that money. It's like, I, I'm into it now. It's big time because it's, so this goes back to

01:25:53   there was a, I don't know if I've, I already did this a couple of days ago because basically

01:26:00   it's came up cause I did one of the streams that I did, um, for the fundraising that we had a

01:26:05   milestone goal and I was started talking about keyboard stuff and I'm going to do, uh, some point

01:26:10   in the next couple of weeks, I will do another milestone goal that if we hit in the fundraising,

01:26:14   I'm going to do a stream showing off the keyboard stuff that I've bought and gotten out to recently.

01:26:20   Um, because this all came up when like somebody wrote into an ask cortex question and said like,

01:26:25   why doesn't Myke like keyboards to this level? Like he does pens cause there's a lot of like

01:26:31   crossovers with the pen and pen artisan communities there is with the keyboard community.

01:26:36   And then now I've started getting into that and like, it's like a whole big thing. Um, there's

01:26:41   like, I'm watching streamers, like Twitch streamers and YouTubers and I guess like a whole thing.

01:26:47   Um, but yeah, I'm very, I'm very into keyboards now, Jason, even to the point where like I've

01:26:52   bought switches, like just see, I'm at a level you didn't even know. Like I am into the, like,

01:27:02   I know beyond which I, I don't want to go there. I don't want to go that far switches.

01:27:08   I've bought lubricant for the switches and like cases and I'm gonna, I'm going the whole hog,

01:27:16   my friends. So are you, are you doing, you know, is this all ergonomic keyboards too?

01:27:21   Is that no, no. Interesting. Some like I do have a mechanical ergonomic keyboard that I love called

01:27:28   the stigma raise, but they're not all, uh, because I've been using the key cron K six very frequently.

01:27:35   Okay. And um, I've been, and I've had no ergonomic issues from that. And I think that's because of

01:27:42   the fact that like I, I am not somebody who writes for long periods of time and I am still like using

01:27:50   various input devices, right? So I'll use a track pad and a Wacom tablet and a mouse like I use,

01:27:56   and then also a keyboard. So I think that mixture has still been very good for me. I think what I've

01:28:01   learned is typing wasn't the issue for my RSI. Um, it's the input devices. Yeah. But at the same

01:28:07   time as I'm changing things like this, I'm still using, um, the cables that I'm using right now,

01:28:12   I'm still using cherry MX brown switches, which have a low actuation force, you know, to press

01:28:16   very hard to register. But some of the I've now like a switch, I set switches that I've bought

01:28:23   have a stronger actuation force. So I'm going to like cautiously, like, can I go up? If not,

01:28:28   I'll just stick with cherry Browns. I like them, but like, those are my favorites. Those are the

01:28:34   ones I like the best. They have the, I mean, they have the right amount of like sound to me. I like

01:28:38   the sound. I like the feel. They don't take a lot of work, but I also want to try out some different

01:28:43   stuff, right? Like there are tactical switch and I want to try some linear switches. So yeah, I am,

01:28:48   this is a hobby that I can really get behind. Um, but I am, uh, it's gotten to the point where

01:28:59   it's like, okay, I'm, I've got a bunch of stuff. It's going to be my base level. And now I need

01:29:04   to set a budget on this hobby. Right? So for me, the keyboard thing is, uh, so I had my initial

01:29:12   exploration of the keyboard, right? So that was what kind of keyboards do I like? What kind of

01:29:16   switches do I like? I bought a switch tester. I bought a keyboard with, uh, with cherry blue

01:29:22   switches. I didn't like them. I like the cherry Brown better. I've stuck with the Brown. I

01:29:27   discovered that I liked, um, that I wanted narrow keyboards cause I didn't want, and this is an

01:29:34   ergonomic thing. I didn't want to reach far from my track pad. I wanted it right next to the

01:29:38   keyboard. I don't, I don't want to spread out my wingspan. Right. And so I discovered that I like

01:29:43   60% and 70% keyboards, which don't have, um, the extra keys on the side. 60% don't have a function

01:29:51   row. I kind of think as much as I like how tiny a 60% keyboard is, I kind of like having the

01:29:55   function row to do like media controls and things. So 70% is probably the sweet spot.

01:30:00   Jason, have you come across 65%?

01:30:04   I, I have. In fact, I think my first keyboard might've been a 65% where it was, but, but the

01:30:09   problem with some of those, some of these keyboards is that they, um, the layouts are weird and this,

01:30:14   I'm getting to it because the thing that I really have discovered that I like is key caps.

01:30:19   That what I really like is, so I've gone through the, what kind of switches do I like and what

01:30:25   kind of, of, of keyboard size do I like? And, and although I still have, like, I have these

01:30:31   two key cron ones that are not using Cherry, they're using Gateron knockoff switches and

01:30:35   they're not quite as good, but they're good. And those are Bluetooth. So they're pretty good. Um,

01:30:39   but I'm still using the Vortex Race, um, as my primary keyboard at my Mac and it's USB,

01:30:46   but it's plugged into my Mac. It doesn't matter. And also I like it better.

01:30:49   Well then, Jason, then you've got cables or a whole other thing,

01:30:54   right? You can get like custom cables and I'm sure, I'm sure you can. I'm sure you can. So

01:31:00   my point is key caps, key caps are where, are where I am forming my opinions of what, like,

01:31:06   what kind of key cap printing I like, what kind of key cap material I like, but really it's also

01:31:11   about the color and like, and that's where they get you. That's where they get you is it's not just

01:31:16   like, Oh, there's a new keyboard I can buy. It's like, Ooh, but how would you like blue keys? And

01:31:22   you're like, I would like blue keys. Can I have blue keys please? And it goes from there on and

01:31:26   on. And then there are sites like WASD where you can do custom, you can just literally design your

01:31:31   own keys and key caps. There's, yeah, but there's a real beauty is in, uh, like the group by key caps,

01:31:38   which is like, they're beautiful sets, but then you pay for them and you wait like six to seven

01:31:44   months. It's true. And yeah, I'm in a couple of group buys and I have a set which I should get by

01:31:50   the end of the year, which I'm excited about, uh, which is called a GMK Future Funk. This was

01:31:55   something I ordered this like months ago. Um, and I'm going to get it at some point. So, um, I am,

01:32:02   uh, this is, this is where I am, uh, in my life, uh, right now is, is very keyboards. And like,

01:32:09   I've made a goal that by the end of the year, um, I want to try and, and get a kit and do like,

01:32:18   try and solder, like, you know, like sort of some switches. I see this as a fun hobby that I can,

01:32:27   like a, like a hand, hands on hobby that I can do. Like, I feel like this is the kind of thing

01:32:34   that I could do and would enjoy. So I have a strict no soldering policy, so it's not gonna happen

01:32:39   for me, but you don't have to write like there was a lot of, a lot of options, even in like the, the

01:32:45   like the maker keyboards, like the small batch keyboards where they're called what's hot swappable.

01:32:50   And that's what I have in mind where you can switch out the switches and you can just pop

01:32:55   them out and break new ones. Right. So, um, for people who have listened to all of this and are

01:32:59   wondering like, is there anything here that I would be interested in? What I would say is first off

01:33:04   there, you can buy on Amazon, you can buy it from WASD. You can buy what is called a key.

01:33:08   Was it a key switch tester? Yeah. And it's essentially like something like the world's

01:33:13   smallest keyboard that a, like a mouse would use. It's, it's like a little, it's like five or six

01:33:19   keys on a little rectangle. And the idea is that it's got all the switches in there and you can

01:33:24   sit there and touch all the switches and feel them and hear how they sound and exactly. And make a

01:33:31   guess as to what might please you. It may not, you may not be right. It's hard to tell, but that will

01:33:36   give you some idea. And then you can choose because there are different kinds of key switches and they

01:33:39   have different sounds and they have different feels. Um, so that's something you could do.

01:33:43   In terms of recommendations, I would say, like I said before, the Vortex Race 3 is my favorite one.

01:33:49   Currently it's a 70% keyboard. So it's got arrow keys because arrow keys are non-negotiable for me.

01:33:54   And it's got a function row, but it's otherwise very compact. It's USB only.

01:33:59   If you want a Bluetooth keyboard, Keychron makes a bunch. And like I said, I don't like them as

01:34:05   much as the Vortex, but they make them in all the different sizes and they're Bluetooth and they

01:34:10   are Mac friendly and they come with Mac friendly key caps. And there's a Mac friendly setting.

01:34:14   There are ones that have sparkly backlights and there are ones that just have regular black,

01:34:18   uh, white backlights, which has, um, RGB and has the option to be plugged in. And I have

01:34:26   mine plugged in just because the Bluetooth is good, but I didn't want to have to charge it.

01:34:31   I have the K6 and the K2. The K6 is smaller because it doesn't have a function row and

01:34:34   the K2 is larger because it has a function row, but that's personal preference. They also make

01:34:39   them that have the big old number pad and stuff, which I despise, but they're there if you want

01:34:43   them. So those are, those are Mac friendly options. Um, and as, although I don't like them as much as

01:34:50   I like the Vortex, they're also cheaper. So, and they've got, if you like sparkly backlighting,

01:34:55   if you, if you dream of having a keyboard where every time you touch a key, it lights up and then

01:35:00   slowly fades away. So as you type, you create like a light show, which I thought was a really

01:35:04   fun feature until I tried it. And then I thought I never want that on. It's a fun thing to show

01:35:09   people, but I do like, I like a lot of the effects that like slowly change colors and,

01:35:17   you know, like this is, you can really, you can really get into customizing this thing.

01:35:29   If you'd like to send in a question, uh, for a future episode of the show, just send out a tweet

01:35:34   with the hashtag ask upgrade or use question Mark ask upgrade in the relay FM members discord,

01:35:39   which you can get access to. If you sign up for upgrade plus go to get upgrade plus.com

01:35:44   and you can support the show, get a bunch of wonderful extras. Thank you so much to our

01:35:48   sponsors this week, Pingdom, fully and things. If you want to find our work online, you go to

01:35:53   relay.fm/shows. You can find this show and many more. If you want to find Jason stuff, go to sixcolors.com

01:35:59   the incomparable.com. Jason is @jsnell, J S N E double L. I am @imike, I M Y K E. Thank you so much

01:36:07   for listening to this week's episode of upgrade and we'll be back next time. Until then, say

01:36:13   goodbye Jason Snow. Goodbye Myke Hurley.

01:36:23   [Music]