256: The Billion Dollar Show


00:00:00   [Intro]

00:00:08   From Relay FM, this is Upgrade, episode 256, and today's show is brought to you by Pingdom,

00:00:14   SaneBox, and Texas Bandit. My name is Myke Hurley, and I, as always, have the pleasure of being joined

00:00:19   by the man behind Six Colors, Mr. Jason Sal. That was a very long introduction, Myke. Hello. I thought

00:00:25   about making it a little bit longer, but I bailed, because nobody cares about long introductions.

00:00:30   #snotalkquestion comes from AJ. AJ wants to know, "Do you use spaces in your file names?"

00:00:37   I do sometimes. A lot of the things that I do are things I'm posting on like a server somewhere as a

00:00:49   file name, like on a podcast download, and I don't in there. Right, because that can get a bit wonky,

00:00:54   right? Yeah, because you got to escape out the file names and stuff like that. Percent 20 and things,

00:00:59   it's just not worth it. I do have spaces in many file names. I have like folders that are

00:01:07   of projects, and I have spaces in them, and it's just fine. The little stories folder that I have,

00:01:14   that where I have my stories, those are often, it's my active thing that I'm writing stories

00:01:23   about, those often don't have spaces, but that's, I don't know, again, it's partially because I

00:01:28   think I'm concerned about where they're sinking to and if I'm going to end up with trouble,

00:01:35   but that's mostly just a habit, I think, that comes out of the olden days when I worked at a

00:01:41   magazine and there was a workflow where you had to name things a specific way. But I do,

00:01:46   not all the time. Sometimes I have, for my stories, I have a little slug of like where

00:01:51   it's going followed by a dash followed by what the story is about, so there's no space there.

00:01:57   But yeah, I use them in other places, so a little bit of both. I name my files like a human being,

00:02:02   so you can read them. I think that's reasonable. They've got spaces in them.

00:02:08   I understand the idea of either stuff not working in some places or it's just like a thing that

00:02:14   you've always done because it wasn't always possible to have computers understand spaces.

00:02:19   I never lived in that time. So all of my, you know, I use little sentences sometimes,

00:02:23   right? Like a three or four word sentence. Very nice.

00:02:25   The Mac always has that, right? The Mac always has had spaces and it's never been a problem.

00:02:32   So yeah, I encourage people to use spaces and punctuation and whatever else they want in their

00:02:38   file names. And when I don't do it, it's mostly out of a concern that this is a thing that's going

00:02:43   to end up on a web server somewhere and I'm going to need to, you know, and then it's just not worth

00:02:49   it. But I do a lot of the time. Thank you to AJ for this #SnellTalk question. If you'd like to

00:02:55   submit a question for us to open the show in the future, just send out a tweet with the #SnellTalk

00:03:00   and it may be considered for opening the show in a future episode. We have some billion dollar

00:03:05   follow-up. This might be the most expensive follow-up we've ever had on the show before.

00:03:09   It's also such a strange thing to have as follow-up, but we have a lot of other stuff

00:03:13   we want to talk about today. Apple have acquired Intel's modem division. Apple have paid a billion

00:03:19   dollars, or at least this acquisition is valued at a billion dollars, provided that it all gets

00:03:24   approved by all the regulatory bodies. Apple will be getting themselves a ton of patents.

00:03:30   That's patents. We call those patents. Otherwise you might think that they're just getting a lot of

00:03:34   paint. Lots of painters are going to be joining the team over at Apple.

00:03:40   It's the Intel colors though, which is weird. I don't know what they're going to do about that.

00:03:44   But they're going to be getting a lot of patents and 2,200 employees, which is a lot of people,

00:03:51   but that's kind of what Apple's going to be bringing over.

00:03:54   This is really interesting because this is like a weird piece of follow-up from episode 242 of

00:04:01   Upgrade back in April, where if you may remember that Apple struck a deal with Qualcomm for

00:04:08   licensing of their patents and kind of to settle things with them and to use their

00:04:14   modem chips for their phones whilst they were in court with them, which was a very peculiar story.

00:04:20   It became even more peculiar when Intel later that day announced that they were getting out

00:04:24   of the modem business for smartphones. The smartphone modem business, I should say.

00:04:28   They're still in the other, they're still in the modem business for other devices. It's just for

00:04:33   smartphones is what Apple's applying for, or buying, I should say, what they want.

00:04:38   So yeah, this is kind of where we are. I mean, it seems pretty obvious, right? Apple just want

00:04:42   to make their own chips. They don't actually want to be working with Qualcomm forever. So they are

00:04:48   buying up the intellectual property that they need, buying up the people that they want,

00:04:53   and they will move forward with their own project to kind of push them into the future.

00:04:57   It's how it would seem.

00:04:58   Yeah, this is Myke and the Modems was that episode. It was a classic.

00:05:04   Great title.

00:05:04   Where you got to talk about modems because it's your favorite thing.

00:05:07   Oh, I love modems.

00:05:08   To talk about modems. Nothing better. Yeah, I think it goes back to those,

00:05:15   it's the classic lines about Apple wanting control. Apple's talked about how they repeatedly,

00:05:22   about how they need to have control of key parts of their technology, right? That is the,

00:05:30   it's a thing that Steve Jobs learned really early on and has imparted to everybody else

00:05:37   who works at Apple. And that is what motivates this. It's Mark Gurman actually had the line

00:05:47   from a Bloomberg article, believe it or not, in 2004, an interview with Jobs.

00:05:50   Jobs said, "I've always wanted to own and control the primary technology in everything we do."

00:05:54   And Tim Cook said, "We believe we need to own and control the primary technologies

00:05:59   behind the products that we make." So it's the old primary technology thing. And I wrote a whole

00:06:03   thing at Tom's Guide about this because you can trace this back to things like the Mac got beat up

00:06:09   because its web browsers were too slow, but the web browser was Internet Explorer. And so they

00:06:13   did Safari because they wanted to take control of that thing. They were getting beaten up about a

00:06:17   thing that they did not control because Microsoft had a bad web browser on the Mac. And so they took

00:06:22   control of it. You go back to when Steve Jobs stood on stage and said there was going to be a

00:06:26   G5 with a 3 GHz processor because IBM had told him there would be and there wasn't. And they were

00:06:32   getting beat up for PowerPC not being as fast as Intel and they switched to Intel. This goes back

00:06:39   a whole long way. Apple wants to control it. Apple wants to invent it if they can. And since they

00:06:45   bought PA Semi in 2008, they have ended up being a spectacularly good chip development company,

00:06:55   which is simply not something that usually happens for the maker of computers or smartphones or

00:07:02   whatever. But Apple said, "No, no, no. If we want to do this, we need to own this and we need to

00:07:08   control this." And as a result, they've got these advantages in their chips over the competition.

00:07:14   And the competition can't use their chips because they're only for Apple. So the modem thing,

00:07:21   they got stuck. Intel was not delivering and Qualcomm had terms for their patents and terms

00:07:31   for their licensing that Apple found unacceptable. So they had that whole lawsuit for that period of

00:07:35   time. And it was very clearly another one of those cases where an illustrative moment of

00:07:42   why you need to control this stuff because now here you are and you've got these two vendors

00:07:47   and one of them you hate and the other one is doing a bad job. And what do you do then?

00:07:52   And so this is the last part of that. I said on Twitter, this is the dog bites man story,

00:07:58   which is the obvious story. Everybody's talking about man bites dog. The whole idea there is that

00:08:03   that's a story. Man bites dog. What a table turning thing. But dog bites man, it's literally,

00:08:09   "Oh, Intel is not doing modems anymore. Apple's doing modems now."

00:08:16   Wait, you say Apple bought Intel's modem business? What a surprise. I think we all

00:08:20   figured this was the most likely scenario and here it is. And there still won't be an Apple

00:08:24   design modem for a few years yet. This is a long lead time kind of thing. But I do wonder in the

00:08:29   long run if it might mean Apple being even more aggressive in kind of integrating cellular

00:08:34   connectivity in more products. This is my just wild speculation portion. But you talk about custom

00:08:40   designed cellular connectivity now from Apple where they don't have to take a piece off of

00:08:46   somebody's price list. Are they gonna, you know, in glasses, if they're still gonna make AR glasses

00:08:53   in AirPods? In on-base Macs? And in laptops, yeah, right, which they haven't done up to now for

00:08:59   various reasons, I think. But once they control and design all that and put it all together in

00:09:04   one place, I think it's much more likely now because it's their stuff and they're not gonna

00:09:10   have to pay a licensing fee. And they might have to pay, depending on Qualcomm, they might have to

00:09:14   pay some patent licenses. But by picking up Intel's licenses, that is, I think, going to be at least

00:09:21   somewhat defensive where, you know, they're not, I don't know the nature of Qualcomm's patents versus

00:09:27   Intel's patents, but it helps in that kind of jousting, I think, for intellectual property of

00:09:33   who owes who what. >> Typically, there's more than one way to do things, right? So,

00:09:40   I mean, you would naturally assume that Intel were doing things slightly different to the way

00:09:43   that Qualcomm does them so they didn't interfere with each other. That just seems like the logical

00:09:47   thing. But as I say, we have literally no idea what the difference is between them. But if Apple

00:09:53   was still gonna be paying the same amount of money to Qualcomm after buying Intel, I can't imagine

00:09:58   they would have done it. Like, this definitely feels like a play to assist them in having,

00:10:04   in making this stuff on their own. >> I don't know. I mean, they already, they were working

00:10:08   with Intel. Intel's got the business. It's not just the patents. It is these 2,000 employees,

00:10:13   right? So, it's a huge kind of influx of chip design talent and modem design talent coming to

00:10:20   Apple. So, it gets them-- >> I'm sure you could buy the people and the technology without the

00:10:27   intellectual property, right? Like, they wanted all of it, you would assume, for a reason like that.

00:10:32   >> I don't know. >> Who knows? >> I don't want to make that claim. I feel like,

00:10:37   I feel like there's value in both of these things. >> Sure. Oh, there is. >> In the intellectual

00:10:41   property and in the people. And they're kind of a package deal here from Intel, which is good for

00:10:47   Apple. And, you know, in the end, it may just be literally that Apple still pays Qualcomm some sort

00:10:54   of fee, but they're no longer buying chips from them. And the fee is on very specific things,

00:11:00   and it's less than they're doing now. >> And who knows? Maybe Qualcomm start paying Apple a fee

00:11:04   as well, right? >> Maybe. Well, I mean, you negotiate a--but what it does mean is that in

00:11:09   the end, Apple is going to be able to make a modem chip itself on its own standards, on its own time.

00:11:15   >> With their own features, all the things that they want, not the things that Qualcomm wants.

00:11:18   >> Exactly. Yeah. >> All right. Next week, we're going to be recording on Tuesday,

00:11:23   just as a programming note. And we will, I'm sure, be talking about Apple's results,

00:11:27   the Q3 results, which are going to be out on the 30th of July. So, that's tomorrow as we record

00:11:33   this episode. This is the third fiscal quarter, which as Jason has written in the notes is

00:11:38   typically the quiet one. >> Yeah, it's the smallest quarter that Apple has every year. So, it will

00:11:43   probably not be super interesting, but you never know. >> Well, my perspective is at this point in

00:11:48   time, there is no boring quarter because Apple's in so much change. So, I'm really intrigued to see

00:11:53   what this quarter looks like, right? Will iPhone sales still be down, right? This is stuff that I

00:11:59   want to see. So, I mean, I am very intrigued. You know I like the results. I can't tell you why. I

00:12:06   don't know why, but I enjoy it. I like looking at the charts like a weirdo. But I'm intrigued. I'm

00:12:14   going to keep my eye on this tomorrow. So, I'm excited about it. So, we'll talk about it next

00:12:19   week for sure. >> Yep. >> All right. We've got some upstream news. We're going to tag team this one

00:12:23   this week. Do you want to tell me about Amazon? >> Sure. So, there's a lot going on right now in

00:12:28   LA. The television critics associations having their summer press tour, which goes on for like

00:12:34   three weeks. It's what my podcast pal Tim Goodman has referred to as the death march with cocktails.

00:12:40   Lots of cocktail parties, lots of shaking hands, lots of presentations, and it goes on for a very

00:12:48   long time. Amazon did their presentation. This is a chance for Amazon to talk about what they're up

00:12:56   to. They did make a lot of news as a part of it. Not everybody makes news. Sometimes it's sort of

00:13:01   like here are things we already announced, but meet the cast or whatever it is. So,

00:13:07   they talked to Jennifer Salke who runs Prime Video now. For upstream purposes, I thought an

00:13:15   interesting thing that she said because she says she knows that Prime Video is a different kind of

00:13:20   service, different kind of product than maybe some of their competitors because it's a part of the

00:13:25   larger Amazon Prime product. She said, "We have a very unique business in the sense that our entire

00:13:30   North Star is to entertain and delight Prime customers all over the world. We're not in the

00:13:35   volume business. We're in the curated business." That is setting them off from Netflix a little

00:13:41   bit. But I do think that there is something to this. This is the argument all along about how do

00:13:46   you analyze Prime Video. Their charter, at least as Jennifer Salke views it, is to entertain

00:13:54   Prime customers. So, what they do is not as tied to the total number of Prime subscriptions that

00:14:03   Amazon has as Netflix's is to the total number of Netflix subscriptions because with Netflix,

00:14:10   the programming is everything and with Prime Video, the programming is one of the things

00:14:15   that ties you to Prime. Because most people that are watching any Prime Video content are watching

00:14:21   it because it's just a bonus that they have. Yeah, I mean, would I pay for Prime Video as a standalone

00:14:28   service? I don't know. I might. There's a bunch of stuff on there that I like. But my point is

00:14:34   I've never considered that, right? Because it's wrapped up in Prime, which I do pay for

00:14:43   and which I do like as a whole. And the video is an important part of it.

00:14:49   But I've never really considered like, "What's my value in Prime Video as a standalone?" No,

00:14:55   because it's not. It's not a standalone service. It's a thing I get with shows on it that I like

00:15:01   and that I might consider as a streaming service in some other context, but I literally never have.

00:15:08   And I think that she's right that they're playing a different game. She's not saying that they're

00:15:13   lesser or greater than Netflix or any of their other competitors, but she's absolutely right

00:15:17   in that the game they're playing is different because of what the product is. And when Jeff Bezos

00:15:23   has his declaration that I want worldwide hits and I want all that stuff, that is all

00:15:30   part of what is guiding her process here in terms of creating this, whatever she said,

00:15:36   the entertainment and delight of Prime members. They did announce some stuff. So they're selling

00:15:43   a lot of first look deals with actors and actor-producer and writer-producer types.

00:15:49   Actors you may know, Forest Whitaker, Connie Britton, and Lena Waithe, all

00:15:54   they announced first look deals. So they bring them projects and Amazon gets the right of first

00:16:00   acceptance for those projects. They unveiled the Lord of the Rings creative team. We heard some of

00:16:07   the names and it's nobody you've ever heard of. It's people, it's the writers and the producers

00:16:12   for the most part. Interesting tidbit in the Lord of the Rings series information. The Hollywood

00:16:18   reporter said, "Commitment is believed to be for five seasons plus a potential spinoff. Once

00:16:26   production budgets, casting, writers, producers, and visual effects are factored in, the total for

00:16:30   the Lord of the Rings series could hit a billion dollars." Yes, a billion dollars for a TV show.

00:16:36   I feel like it has to be though, right? Yeah. If you really want to do this, like Amazon,

00:16:43   you bought the rights to the Lord of the Rings, right? You picked something very,

00:16:47   very expensive here. If you want to make it what it's going to be, you've got to put the money in.

00:16:52   And this is Jeff Bezos again saying, "Basically, I want the next Game of Thrones. I want that."

00:16:58   Right. And if you want the next Game of Thrones, you know you get it? Money. You put a lot of money

00:17:01   in. That's what you need to do. Well, you put in the money and then you take your chances. That's

00:17:06   the trick, right? I know that doesn't guarantee it. But I mean, to create something like, you know,

00:17:11   like to come out of the gate and be like, "You know how Game of Thrones ended. We want to be

00:17:15   like that from the beginning." That's going to cost a lot of money. And then it's like irrespective

00:17:20   of how good it is, you still got to put the money in because this show will be a very strong visual

00:17:26   show. And that costs money. I think there's an interesting question and discussion for another

00:17:32   time about whether, about how big budget TV is going to happen on streaming services. And are we

00:17:44   going to see a similar sort of thing as we've seen in the movie industry? Where in the movie industry,

00:17:50   the big budget stuff has kind of crowded out everything else, but a lot of that stuff has gone

00:17:54   to streaming. And I think at some point we're thinking about what does it mean for TV that

00:18:00   there's a billion dollar TV show that's being made? Like is that money going to crowd out the

00:18:07   smaller stuff or is the smaller stuff? I feel like streaming is a perfect place for the smaller stuff.

00:18:13   But I do wonder about that sometimes if there's almost a natural drive in the entertainment

00:18:17   industry, if you're looking for a big hit to push some of the cheaper stuff to the side.

00:18:22   Because how many mid-budget dramas and comedies could be made for what they're making one

00:18:29   Lord of the Rings out of? Well this is the amount of money that Apple put in to start their entire

00:18:34   service. And we know that there was more money spent than this, but that's the same amount of

00:18:39   money. So that's a lot of money. Yeah, so that's the question. And I get the reason is sort of like

00:18:45   you can make ten different Patriots, Sad Spies, which officially is not coming back by the way.

00:18:53   Which is so disappointing. Even Sadder because that's such a great show. Don't let the name

00:18:58   fool you. Patriot is a great, great, great, great show about a sad man in a suit. But they can make

00:19:03   50 of them and nobody's going to watch them, right? Or they can make Lord of the Rings. So I

00:19:08   think it's an interesting just business question about shooting for the huge hit which Amazon is

00:19:15   definitely doing. And which Apple may be doing too with some of the things that they're trying

00:19:20   to produce. And versus flooding the zone with lots and lots of content which is what Netflix does.

00:19:28   Netflix is looking for big hits too, but Netflix is also doing a lot of volume and touching a bunch

00:19:34   of different areas. They did another interesting thing about Amazon and I don't know, you know,

00:19:39   we talk about Netflix having all of their data and all their statistics and using that to judge

00:19:44   that there was that one report that said that within two weeks of a show being dropped on

00:19:48   Netflix, Netflix basically knows its entire lifespan. It knows it can take the analytics

00:19:56   of the first couple of weeks and say with a high degree of accuracy, how many plays it's going to

00:20:01   get for the rest of time. Now, yeah, occasionally something will kind of like bob up later and people

00:20:05   discover it and it'll be a surprise, but very rarely is that the case. And they use this data

00:20:10   to decide whether they want to invest more money in it, what it means for them. I think it's

00:20:14   interesting that Amazon in some contrast to that has announced that they just renewed two shows

00:20:23   whose first Amazon produced seasons haven't aired because what is that based on? And I think partially

00:20:32   it may be based on that they're delaying some stuff being released and they need to make

00:20:36   contractual decisions to renew the show or not. It may be that, but I think it may also be just

00:20:41   a purely creative thing, which is they like how it's looking and they want to just give them a

00:20:46   shot in the arm right now and say, yes, we like these. So "Carnival Row," which is a show that

00:20:50   has not even premiered yet has been renewed for a second season on Amazon. And "The Expanse,"

00:20:54   which was saved off of the Sci-Fi channel by Amazon for a fourth season, which will premiere

00:21:00   in December has already been renewed for a fifth season. So I don't know what they're doing over

00:21:04   there, but they're canceling shows I like, they're renewing shows that haven't aired yet. They're

00:21:09   definitely playing a different game at Amazon. - Marvel showed up a bunch of stuff as part of

00:21:15   Comic-Con. And so if you've been ever been paying attention to the way that Marvel has been running

00:21:21   the Marvel Cinematic Universe, they talk about the movies in phases. So like all of the different

00:21:26   movies fall into different phases and we're about to move into phase four, right? So what came after

00:21:32   "Avengers Endgame?" And this includes a couple of sequels, a couple of new movies, right? We could

00:21:36   finally get in a "Black Widow" movie. There's going to be a sequel to "Doctor Strange." There's going

00:21:43   to be a "Thor" movie and amazingly Natalie Portman's coming back and she's going to be female

00:21:49   Thor, which is awesome. I'm very excited to see what they do with that. That was a big surprise.

00:21:53   But if you want to know about what Disney is thinking these days, you want to take a look at

00:21:59   this because the phase four includes a bunch of Disney+ content, which is very, very interesting.

00:22:05   - This is a huge... For me, that slide, it tells the whole story, which is when they unveiled phase

00:22:12   three, they put up a slide with... And when they do this, it's hilarious because in the moment,

00:22:17   you're like, "Oh my God, that's so far away. That's like four years from now." And then you look up

00:22:22   and it's like, "Oh, they've released every movie that was on that slide now. Oh, that's interesting.

00:22:27   Four years have passed." But they do it and you're like, "Oh, here's all the Marvel movies. It's two

00:22:32   or three movies a year for the next five years or four years." And this time, there's five Disney+

00:22:39   series on that slide, along with all of the Marvel movies. And that says it all.

00:22:44   - There are more movies that they haven't announced yet, which is another thing. They've given dates

00:22:49   for four movies, but they haven't said what they are. And that's just a thing. And you'd expect

00:22:55   Guardians of the Galaxy. - Guardians of the Galaxy 3, Black Panther sequel is in there too.

00:22:58   I don't think they've dated it, but we know that they're happening. But the Disney+ thing. So

00:23:03   a lot of people still have this misunderstanding. It's like a little different version of the...

00:23:10   It's the same people who brought you Planet of the Apps who are doing Apple's TV service,

00:23:14   where it's like, "No, that's not true at all." People are like, "Oh, but Marvel's been making TV

00:23:20   shows forever. This isn't new. They're the people who did Agents of SHIELD and Daredevil on Netflix

00:23:27   and all that." And so the really short version of it is that Marvel TV is operated by the same

00:23:36   division of Marvel that does Marvel Comics, which is a guy named Ike Perlmutter, who is famously

00:23:41   like a cheapskate. And they have a studio that has a bunch of people who are making TV shows.

00:23:50   And Kevin Feige, who does all the Marvel Cinematic Universe movies, used to report to Ike Perlmutter.

00:23:57   And after he made billions and billions of dollars from Disney, Kevin Feige basically went to Disney

00:24:02   and said, "I don't want to work for this guy anymore." And they said, "Well, thank you for

00:24:06   your billions and billions of dollars. You can work for the Disney studio chief instead of

00:24:10   Ike Perlmutter." So for years now, Marvel's movies have been run from a completely separate part of

00:24:18   Disney, completely different fiefdom than Marvel TV. What's relevant about these shows, which is

00:24:24   The Falcon and the Winter Soldier and WandaVision, which has got the Scarlet Witch in it, the What If

00:24:29   animated series, a Loki series with Tom Hiddleston, a Hawkeye series with Jeremy Renner, those are not

00:24:35   just actors from the movies that you've seen before now on TV playing those same characters,

00:24:41   but it's all being produced by Kevin Feige out of his group, not out of Ike Perlmutter's group,

00:24:48   at Marvel TV. And so this is sort of what we were promised with things like Agents of Shield

00:24:53   and Daredevil and Luke Cage and Jessica Jones and Never Really Got, which is those were supposed to

00:25:00   be integrated into the Marvel universe, but kind of weren't in the end because it was different

00:25:04   people doing them. And these are on the slide for phase four. So how it will actually play out in

00:25:14   terms of integration, I don't know, because it is actually really hard to integrate all of these

00:25:19   products together, although Marvel has done a great job, but it certainly speaks to how important

00:25:24   Disney's streaming service is. Yeah. Yeah. That's like, "Oh, you want to see what Captain America's

00:25:30   doing? Well, it's on TV now, so go there." Right? Like it's like super interesting.

00:25:35   All of these shows will be rolling out from 2020 to 2021, then not all coming at the same time.

00:25:42   None of them will be ready, I think, for when the service actually launches.

00:25:46   No, no, that'll be the Star Wars series will be ready there, but the Marvel stuff's not going to

00:25:50   be ready for another year after it launches. And all of the, pretty much all of them, except

00:25:55   for What If. What If is like this animated show where they're using all of the voice actors that

00:26:00   are like the actual movie stars, but it's like an animated show where they take a scenario and change

00:26:07   the results. So like, what if somebody died or didn't die on that kind of thing? Right. So they're

00:26:12   going to be able to go back. If you think about Avengers End Game, here's a very, very mild spoiler

00:26:16   for Avengers End Game. There is within the plot of Avengers End Game, the idea of what if things went

00:26:22   differently in movies you've already watched. That's, I'll just leave it there. That's what the

00:26:26   What If show is. It's animated, but it's going to have those act, the same actors as the voices. And

00:26:30   it's going to be basically like playing off of things that happened in the movies, which is a fun,

00:26:37   it was a comic that I used to love actually as a kid where they did this with what if this event

00:26:41   of this comic book changed and they're going to do it for the movie. So that could be fun.

00:26:45   Hawkeye, which is one of the best, believe it or not, Hawkeye, one of the best Marvel comics of the

00:26:50   last decade, Matt Fraction's Hawkeye. I'm wondering how that will influence this Hawkeye TV series

00:26:57   because the idea of a TV series featuring Jeremy Renner seems really boring. But it's going to have

00:27:03   Kate Bishop, who is the young, also Hawkeye, is going to be introduced in that show. Using the

00:27:08   logo of the comic as well. I know, right? They are. They are. So if they can, if they integrate

00:27:15   some of the Matt Fraction Hawkeye DNA into that show, that'll be great. I can't wait to see a

00:27:19   bunch of Russian mobsters in tracksuits saying bro in fall 2021. I really liked a, there was like a

00:27:30   quote from Jeremy Renner on stage and he's like, it's going to be great to watch somebody

00:27:34   without superpowers teach somebody else how to be a superhero. Like I really like that line. It's

00:27:39   like accepting who Hawkeye is and because he's going to be training like the next Hawkeye,

00:27:44   Kate Bishop. And it's just like a funny thing for him to say, but it's totally true. So yeah,

00:27:50   I'm actually quite excited about that if they'd go down the route that we want them to. All right,

00:27:54   there's a couple last things before we move on. NBC has announced that their streaming service

00:27:59   will be launching in April, 2020. There's no real details, but that's when it's coming.

00:28:03   Yeah, it's unclear. They said they're going to not overemphasize originals, which is,

00:28:08   well, we'll see about that. Although I did mention what last week that, that I think I mentioned that

00:28:15   here anyway, a show that I like AP bio got picked up. Yeah, I mentioned that here because it was the

00:28:19   left hand doesn't know what the right hand is doing. It got picked up by NBC streaming

00:28:22   after being canceled by NBC because they don't talk to each other. So that's essentially an

00:28:27   original. Although, you know, maybe is this the fate of the NBC streaming service is that shows

00:28:33   that they cancel on broadcast get saved for streaming. So it's like the leftover channel.

00:28:36   I don't know. But they are doing some of that and they're going to have, of course, all their,

00:28:41   their catalog content there, because they are owned by the cable company. A lot of the plan is

00:28:46   that if you've got a cable subscription, I think you get access to the free tier of this with

00:28:51   commercials. So they're kind of viewing it as sort of a, not a cord cutter paradise as much as kind of

00:28:57   like an add on thing. It's, it's like we said about Amazon having a different model. NBC universal

00:29:02   seems to be trying a different model because they're owned by the cable company. So we'll see

00:29:07   how that goes. I'm unclear. I imagine like Hulu, they'll have a, or like CBS, it's the same thing.

00:29:12   They'll have a tier where you pay them money and don't see ads, but that the base level will be an

00:29:17   ad service that cable subscribers will get for cheap or free. And I made the mistake on Twitter

00:29:24   last week of telling Tim Goodman from the Hollywood reporter, our joke about how this

00:29:28   service could, should be called Peacock Plus. And he ran with it and actually mentioned it in

00:29:33   a piece in the Hollywood reporter. So I think that means NBC executives now have seen our stupid joke

00:29:40   about calling it Peacock Plus. I don't know why you think this is a bad thing. I think this is a

00:29:43   fantastic thing. If it's called Peacock Plus in the end, I guess I'm going to do a victory lap,

00:29:49   or maybe they'll give me a free with advertising subscription to NBC's Peacock Plus. I don't know.

00:29:54   - Today's episode is brought to you by Pingdom from our friends at SolarWinds. It is summertime,

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00:31:07   right now. Pingdom.com/000. Our thanks to Pingdom for their continued support of this show and all

00:31:12   of RelayFN. We have some frustrating stories to talk about today. So we are going to have a very

00:31:22   fun... Summer of fun! Summer of frustration. We are going to have a very fun Ask upgrade at the end of

00:31:27   the show today. So don't worry, things will pick up. There was a report from Alex Hern in The

00:31:33   Guardian stating that Apple hires contractors to review Siri requests to grade their accuracy and

00:31:40   effectiveness. This is something that a little while ago Amazon got really heavily criticized

00:31:47   for from a Bloomberg report, right? That they were having people listen in to Amazon Echo requests

00:31:55   and then kind of reviewing them so they could test and kind of mark how well the service was doing.

00:32:00   So that's kind of like to set the stage. I want to talk a little bit more about this and then we're

00:32:05   going to dive into it together. So it isn't completely clear in Apple's policies that the

00:32:10   requests will be heard by humans. So like I checked, I took a look at some of the privacy

00:32:15   policy stuff and what Apple says is the things that you say in Dictate will be recorded and sent

00:32:19   to Apple to process your requests. Now I'm sure a lawyer could tell me that it means that people

00:32:25   could be listening to it but I don't think that that is clear enough considering how clear the

00:32:29   rest of their privacy policy is around this. The rest of it's written in pretty understandable

00:32:33   English but they do not state explicitly that a human being can listen to what you say to Siri.

00:32:39   And I don't think that most people would ever assume that a human being is ever listening to

00:32:45   what is said to Siri. Apple responded to the Guardian by saying that these requests are not

00:32:49   associated to any user information and less than one percent are being reviewed. So they confirm

00:32:54   that this is the thing that they do but they say that you know people can't be tracked. However,

00:32:59   the whistleblower who talked to the Guardian says that they very frequently heard extremely private

00:33:05   information like medical things, criminal activity and even sexual encounters and they say that the

00:33:10   requests they receive include location data, contact details and app data which is a strange

00:33:16   thing. Like I don't 100% know what that entails. Apple say that it's not possible to link back to

00:33:21   the user from this information but the whistleblower says that they feel like they get enough that they

00:33:25   could actually try and find people if they wanted to. So I don't know what to believe with that but

00:33:30   it does seem interesting. And here's a quote from the individual who spoke to the Guardian.

00:33:36   "Apple is subcontracting out. There is a high turnover. It's not like people are being encouraged

00:33:41   to have consideration for people's privacy or even consider it. If there was someone with

00:33:45   nefarious intentions it wouldn't be too hard to identify the people on the recordings."

00:33:50   So Apple tends to talk a very good game when it comes to user privacy but they overstepped the

00:33:54   line. Yeah and famously they did that billboard which was what happens when the iPhone stays on

00:34:01   the iPhone. I will also point out and our friend... Which has come back to bite them

00:34:06   like three times already. Yeah when you boast about something you are calling, basically

00:34:13   inviting people to investigate you. So our colleague Renee Ritchie pointed out that the

00:34:22   Bloomberg story actually says we talked to Apple and they said they do this too. The Bloomberg

00:34:28   story about Amazon. That's funny. So that was back in April. And Renee's question was is it that you

00:34:35   know the Guardian wrote a good headline and they lead with the fact that people have heard drug

00:34:39   deals and sexual situations. Is that why people are talking about this? I think my answer is I

00:34:45   think they're talking about it now because the Guardian got somebody who works on processing

00:34:51   Siri requests to talk about it on the record with details about the human beings. Yes I think the

00:34:57   thing that I don't like about this is that quote that I read right that like this individual feels

00:35:03   like Apple is not doing a good enough job in educating on privacy. Like yeah that's the thing

00:35:09   that upsets me the most. Subcontracting is a thing that makes me... I'm uncomfortable about the whole

00:35:13   contracting relationship in Silicon Valley in general where big expensive tech companies that

00:35:18   have lots and lots and lots of money say this part of our business isn't important enough for

00:35:23   actual employees that we hire. We're gonna just pawn this off to some subcontractor somewhere.

00:35:28   And this is like you know you see it in Facebook using subcontractors to do content moderation.

00:35:33   But like Apple does this. Apple's like our social media I mean just to use a non-specific example

00:35:40   here but like our social media or our documentation or whatever like that part of it is not as

00:35:46   important. You don't have to be an Apple employee and those people then don't get the benefits of

00:35:49   being an Apple employee. They don't get paid as well. They're like all of these things because

00:35:54   they're using a subcontractor for something like private user data audio from inside people's homes

00:36:00   to have that be to a subcontractor. Like I look at that and I say you're sending a message that this

00:36:07   isn't as important because you got people kind of drifting in on the transom. They're hired by

00:36:11   the contractor. They drift in. They listen to people's private conversations. They drift out

00:36:16   again. Like it feels to me like it sends a message that this is less important to Apple by doing that.

00:36:22   So that bothers me. I know I've heard from a lot of people since the story broke who say well of

00:36:26   course you need humans. It's part of the process to train machine learning. And I would say I'm

00:36:34   sure that there is an aspect of this process that is greatly benefited by human training to say what

00:36:40   actually happened here and what went wrong and you can classify that interaction and you can use that

00:36:46   to build a model that or improve the model. But a few things. First off I think always transparency

00:36:56   and ideally giving users options is important. So for example when you set up an iPhone it says

00:37:03   can Apple get your data for improving apps and the quality of the system and you do that at startup

00:37:10   and you say yes or no. And if you say no nothing happens except you don't transmit the data.

00:37:14   And it says can third-party developers see the data and you can say yes or no and nothing happens

00:37:19   concerning the data. As far as I know that's not how Siri works. As far as I know the way you opt

00:37:23   out is by turning off Siri or turning off the Siri request. And this is one of those things where I

00:37:31   would have a lot less of a problem with this if Apple said you know what we may use audio clips

00:37:37   that we'll try to anonymize to improve the service. Are you okay with that? And if I say no

00:37:42   then it doesn't send them. But that's not what's happening right now and that bothers me

00:37:47   a lot. So that's part of this. The other part of it is in the grand scheme of things what is it that

00:37:57   we want these devices that are translating commands to the cloud to do. And for me I feel like the goal

00:38:06   here should be like Apple talks a lot now about doing things on device right like we don't send

00:38:11   your things in the cloud we don't send you know we're processing your photos on device and coming

00:38:16   up with the keywords and doing all the machine analysis like all of these things we do we're

00:38:19   doing on device so that you have complete control over it. Okay well you know what would be great is

00:38:27   if I spoke words into one of your devices that on device that got translated into text and sent to a

00:38:35   server without my audio. But and I appreciate that that might not be as effective in some ways but

00:38:44   we need to go there as well because I don't want my audio sent out of my house. I don't.

00:38:50   You know bottom line I don't and that is something that Apple needs to deal with and I'm disappointed

00:38:58   in Apple here because and maybe there are cultural reasons like I've heard some people say that this

00:39:04   may be something that was a part of Siri all along and so it's just sort of allowed to continue to

00:39:09   happen but like I look at this and say you got to be better than this and the argument that well of

00:39:15   course Apple needs humans to listen to audio even if we accept that to be true okay be transparent

00:39:21   about it and legalese is not transparent and let me opt out without a penalty to me or ideally

00:39:30   let users opt in to improve the service because they don't care but none of that seems to be

00:39:35   happening right now. Yeah and one of the things that the report hinges on a lot is like accidental

00:39:41   activations and the fact that you know the problem and I actually think this is the bigger problem

00:39:48   I don't care if people are reviewing the questions I asked to Siri. What I care about is when Siri is

00:39:57   listening to me and I didn't ask and that data goes to depending on your settings all of these

00:40:04   things if they get triggered they get triggered silently and you don't know that it's listening

00:40:09   to you until you get like a chime or a I don't know what you said or I don't understand yeah

00:40:16   and at that point that audio is is gone it's gone like that's it it's it's it's out of your house

00:40:22   and that so you make a good point that one way to one way to do it would be to frame it around

00:40:28   accidental activations and saying I don't I want to opt out of sending that information to improve

00:40:33   the service because I'm not comfortable with 30 seconds of random room noise from my house being

00:40:39   sent to Apple to be processed by a subcontractor who's going to listen to whatever happened in my

00:40:46   house and then tell their friends about it because they don't care about the privacy or the

00:40:49   confidentiality agreements they signed because it was just a temporary job and etc etc etc. It's like

00:40:54   it's too much. It's like you know we are in this world now where like this is this is what's

00:41:00   happening to us right and it's kind of like it can be awkward you know and and I talk about a lot of

00:41:05   these things of like trade-offs right like privacy is a trade-off in 2019 you know like if you want

00:41:11   to use certain products you have to kind of accept a level of you're going to give up your privacy

00:41:16   but I never really felt like I had to do that with Apple you know like I felt like that's how I feel

00:41:21   with Google that's how I feel with Amazon and I've always kind of felt like there are there are

00:41:27   naturally things that they do that people aren't going to like but we just don't know what they are

00:41:31   right like I'm talking about Apple like this is one of them right that like there's only they are

00:41:37   still going to be doing things that we criticize other companies for because sometimes there are

00:41:41   there's only one way to do it and I think it can be a problem for us to just assume that Apple does

00:41:49   everything perfectly when it comes to privacy and we shouldn't assume that we will get 100

00:41:57   privacy from them just because they act to be better and I think that this is an example of

00:42:03   that like this is not a grab your pitchforks go down to Cupertino and start going wild moment

00:42:08   right that's not what I'm attempting to say here it's more a case of just like don't assume that

00:42:14   Apple are completely perfect at this stuff everybody put your pitchforks down please because

00:42:20   they just like they are doing the same things that other companies that you apparently don't like

00:42:26   their privacy for do as well because sometimes it's the only way something can be done now there's

00:42:31   an argument to be made that well you know Google and Amazon do this and why are why are you holding

00:42:37   Apple to a higher standard then this is just how it works with these things and to that I would say

00:42:43   this is kind of on Apple I hold them to the standard that they set themselves to me publicly

00:42:48   exactly Apple holds itself above its competitors especially Google and Amazon when it comes to

00:42:56   privacy period and do they have to do that no they don't have to do that if Apple would like to back

00:43:01   down on privacy I guess they could go ahead and do that but if they're not going to do that then

00:43:09   this is part of what that entails which is they've got to do better than Amazon and Google not just

00:43:17   act at their level if they're going to hold themselves above the competition they gotta

00:43:21   they gotta behave like it they've gotta change how they do it and that means for something like Siri

00:43:26   they have to say oh boy this is gonna cause problems here and we're gonna have to change

00:43:31   this and we're gonna have to do this you have to do it you have to do it if you're gonna if you're

00:43:35   gonna if you're gonna put that billboard up if you're gonna say in an ad campaign that privacy

00:43:42   is the most important thing on Apple products then you have to when when something like this

00:43:47   comes out you have to look at it long and hard and say you're right you know this is not to our

00:43:53   standards and Apple's response which was on a Friday afternoon it's perfect timing for Apple

00:43:58   right it's like this is when news gets buried and that's when the Guardian posted the story and it

00:44:02   got passed around but like Apple needs to do better with their response than what they did

00:44:06   which was well you know yeah it happens but we don't we don't link the Apple ID so you can't

00:44:12   email the person that you're hearing which is not a great response. All right today's episode is

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00:46:43   email inbox under control. Jason I want to talk to you about something that I've seen you tweeting

00:46:52   about something that I've seen you very upset about in our Slack which is the security changes

00:47:00   in macOS Catalina. Can you give me a breakdown of what is going on from a perspective of what is

00:47:07   Apple trying to do and what is the actual result here? Well so I installed the story is that I

00:47:16   installed Catalina last week on my main my main drive. I have a duplicate of it as Mojave on an

00:47:31   external SSD that's where I am right now but I write about this stuff and I need to live on it

00:47:38   because there's a difference between using a pristine beta that's empty of Catalina or any

00:47:45   other beta and using it with the apps you use. You won't get the results right you won't actually

00:47:50   understand how it works unless you're really properly properly using it. Right exactly so I

00:47:58   so this is the idea is is I use that and I learn things about how how Catalina works with my real

00:48:13   apps and my real data great. Within you know minutes of doing this what I discovered is

00:48:21   things that I knew about because I actually attended the session about Mac security

00:48:28   at WWDC and there's a bunch of new stuff in Catalina for Mac security. They changed a lot

00:48:37   of things. The you know new Mac developer certificates need notarization to pass through

00:48:46   Gatekeeper which is the app that or the piece of the system software that checks to see whether

00:48:51   you're allowed to launch an app. All new software requires notarization. Notarization is the system

00:48:56   where even if you're outside of the Mac App Store you have to send your app to an Apple server and

00:49:00   have them scan it and then approve it and then they cryptographically sign it and send it back

00:49:05   to you and the idea there is that it's been approved by Apple in an automated way. Apple

00:49:10   systems and is tamper proof now if people make changes to it the signature breaks and therefore

00:49:18   it's tamper proof. All existing software before June 1st basically that was built will pass but

00:49:25   anything built after June 1st has to pass has to be notarized to pass Gatekeeper and then there's

00:49:32   a bunch of specific things that also happen. Gatekeeper is scanning everything regardless

00:49:37   of whether it was quarantined or loaded all the malicious stuff can be spotted that way so they

00:49:42   cranked everything up on this and they've also added more user consent requests and you may

00:49:50   remember some of these from Mojave where like you're you want to use automation or you wanted to

00:49:57   use the microphone and you get a thing saying this app needs to use this. It's very iOS like

00:50:02   kind of thing. In Catalina screen recording keyboard input monitoring file access to the

00:50:12   desktop to documents to iCloud drive to cloud storage to removable volumes to network volumes

00:50:19   all of those now require user consent not if the user opens the open dialog box and chooses

00:50:27   something because that is implied user consent but if the app wants to scan your desktop folder to see

00:50:33   what's there at some point without asking you it now in Catalina it has to ask you. So there's a

00:50:40   lot going on here. The motivation is good which is they want to they want to take a system that's

00:50:47   open not like iOS and make it safer because they feel like it's a really scary vector for bad

00:50:54   software and spyware to get on a Mac if it's not something where more permissions are requested

00:51:02   from the user. They want to put up more barriers so that your average Mac user out of the box

00:51:06   is more secure which I think is good. The challenge is if you're using older software

00:51:12   if you're somebody who is a not a regular user but a bit more of a power user

00:51:20   in in those scenarios the out-of-box experience of a Catalina upgrade is at least based on what I see

00:51:27   in the beta which I will grant you is a beta it could change and the software that I'm using is

00:51:33   largely not updated for Catalina yet and may be modified to not trigger this stuff as much

00:51:39   but with all of that preamble I install Catalina and every time I turn around I've got like

00:51:48   five dialogue boxes popping up saying can I look at the desktop can I look at documents can I

00:51:54   show you notifications I can't launch this app because it might contain malware can I open the

00:52:01   desktop can I open the documents and it to me it crosses a line where it feels like my Mac is now

00:52:10   actively trying to get in my way and prevent me and judging me and preventing me from doing things

00:52:15   I want it to do and the fact that Apple has a dialogue box in the Catalina beta that says

00:52:23   basically if something isn't notarized uses the word malicious yeah Apple can't scan this thing

00:52:30   for malicious intent and that you have to go to system preferences and and click the lock and put

00:52:35   in your password and then click a box that appears to run software that doesn't get Apple's approval

00:52:42   is aggressive but that route of going to system preferences to say I want to open this app is not

00:52:48   actually shown to the user in any way either you have to work it out on your own yeah well for the

00:52:53   for the malicious software warning yes it's you it doesn't tell you where to go because what it

00:52:57   wants to do is prevent you this is apps that aren't notarized right like this yeah this is what that

00:53:02   is okay yeah so this is a hard challenge they want the Mac to be more secure especially by default

00:53:10   and I get it I so I appreciate their security motivations here I feel like they need to be

00:53:19   better this isn't me telling Apple it needs to be better again I guess that's a trend today

00:53:23   there's Apple needs to be better at how this is presented to the user and when I was complaining

00:53:28   about this on Twitter I saw a bunch of suggestions I don't know I mean my gut feeling is that is that

00:53:33   the security people are on it for Catalina and maybe they are so on it that the people who are

00:53:39   concerned about the user experience are not being empowered to say wait a second

00:53:46   your improvement of the security experience on the Mac is degrading the user experience on the Mac

00:53:52   it seems to me at least in these betas that that the the balance is way over on the security side

00:53:58   and that the bat the user experience is degraded because of it so people on Twitter suggested I saw

00:54:04   one suggestion that was very clever that was could you do like a per app permission thing where you

00:54:08   could say you know what I trust this app just let it do what it needs to do that that John Gruber

00:54:16   mentioned the idea and it's something that I wrote about a little while ago of like a developer mode

00:54:20   essentially where as a power user I can go in somewhere and say just let this stuff have access

00:54:27   right like I don't care I want I don't want you throwing dialogues up in my face I try lots of

00:54:33   stuff that you're not going to like computer let me do it because it's you're my computer let me do

00:54:39   it and you know like when I first had a Chromebook I found out very quickly there's a developer mode

00:54:46   that turns off a bunch of stuff but like Apple has removed the just let me do whatever option from

00:54:52   the security system preferences it's not there anymore it's sort of like Mac App Store only or

00:54:57   Mac App Store and verified and that's been the case for I think I think it's in Mojave it might

00:55:02   have been even a version before so I can't say no no no I'm cool let me do whatever I also think some

00:55:08   of the security um just some of the security measures that they've got here seem a little

00:55:15   too much to me um and I get what they want to do here which is say you know what an app shouldn't

00:55:22   be able to rifle through your files without you knowing that's what they're saying here when they

00:55:27   ask for desktop and documents and iCloud and cloud storage is software shouldn't be able to look at

00:55:33   your files without you either giving permission or you picking a file for it I get it and yet as

00:55:42   a Mac user for 20 years I kind of feel like if it's apps I installed and apps I ran and it's

00:55:52   looking at the desktop or the documents folder that I could not be more clear with what I allow

00:56:03   which is if it's my app and that's my desktop I'm okay with it because that's what the desktop is

00:56:10   for now I get you know again I get the motivation here but there's a part of me that just thinks

00:56:19   get out of my way that the system needs to get out of my way and and if you are really concerned

00:56:24   about apps doing bad things by reading the contents of your desktop folder then we need

00:56:31   to find another way to to secure a Mac user without making your Mac fight you be and I feel

00:56:37   like what Apple has done at least in the beta is they've moved over into what is essentially

00:56:41   like a dark pattern where when when they throw up a dialogue box with scare words and don't tell you

00:56:48   where you where to go next they say throw out this file they literally it's like you tried to launch

00:56:52   an app that's not notarized what we'll tell you is it could be mal malicious and we won't tell you

00:56:58   where to go and you should probably throw it in the trash that's it that is an attempt by Apple

00:57:04   to degrade the user experience to the point where you give up and just do what they say and for me

00:57:12   while I appreciate that maybe as a default behavior that's okay and maybe even a good idea

00:57:18   for people who are not advanced computer users to not install malware on their computer and realize

00:57:23   what they're doing for me it's unacceptable behavior and then let's go to the other part

00:57:30   of this which is okay what about those regular people well if they're getting pummeled with

00:57:33   dialog boxes Microsoft learned this lesson with Vista if they're getting pummeled with requests

00:57:38   to approve this and approve that and approve this you know what happens they just always say yes

00:57:42   and there's no security

00:57:44   so what is the situation if you're a Mac App Store app you're great you're a Mac App Store app I

00:57:57   think I think you may have to ask permission for certain entitlements anyway but it's a lot easier

00:58:03   because you've been approved and checked and and and the App Store apps are a cut above but they

00:58:10   may still have to ask for those same permissions it's the idea of like granting full disk access

00:58:15   and things like that where and and what seems to be happening here is like desktop and documents

00:58:22   are like more granular versions of full disk access that aren't as scary because they don't

00:58:27   need the full disk but you know but the goal here is really Apple wants to bring all of the

00:58:33   as much of the App Store experience to out of the App Store as possible because they know the Mac

00:58:40   App Store is not the only game in town on the Mac unlike on iOS and they said somebody from Apple

00:58:48   stood on stage at WWDC and said we're not going to prevent Mac users from launching the software

00:58:53   that they want to launch you know so what what what I read that it was like oh well that's good

00:58:59   you're not going to like make it impossible for me to launch software that I want to launch

00:59:03   turns out what they really meant was we're just going to make it really painful

00:59:06   but you can do it but it's not it's not going to be easy we're going to get in your way we're going

00:59:12   to shame you we're going to make you guess where you need to go to make it work and then eventually

00:59:16   we'll make it work and so as a result you know if for all those rebels who don't want to be in

00:59:22   the App Store or or can't be in the App Store because their apps don't fit the guidelines

00:59:26   essentially and this is one of these kind of not widely discussed stories essentially if you want

00:59:32   to distribute Mac software at this point you have to have a Mac developer account and you have to

00:59:38   submit your binary when you're when you do a build and it has to get notarized which means it's being

00:59:43   scanned by Apple and if Apple doesn't like it for some reason you know it doesn't get notarized then

00:59:50   and that's uh really bad. I think my biggest problem here is that like people will upgrade

00:59:56   to Catalina and they will think a bunch of their software is broken. Yes. And and that that's the

01:00:01   thing that I think is difficult here. Yeah because the developers are gonna this is one of the

01:00:05   reasons I think Mac developers are gonna have to rush to support a lot of this stuff is because

01:00:09   otherwise the experience when people launch the apps on Catalina is going to be really

01:00:14   really bad but and and again the counter argument here is your if your app is kind of lazy

01:00:23   and you know scans the desktop and or scans the documents folder and triggers that warning

01:00:30   why are you doing that like why are you scanning the user's disk without

01:00:36   giving without checking and the answer may be a very good answer and this is my problem with it

01:00:41   is it also from Apple's perspective um they're they're the mal worrying about malware is meaning

01:00:48   that apps that are trying to improve the user's experience by scanning their disk now are

01:00:52   triggering a security warning. I don't like that either and I don't like the fact that when you

01:00:58   open a non-notarized app not only does it say it could be malicious it throws the developer under

01:01:05   the bus and says you should contact the developer there's something wrong with them basically is

01:01:10   what it says it says you talk to them it's their problem it's not our problem it's it's their

01:01:14   problem and I don't like that either because that means that people are going to be complaining

01:01:18   and let's pile on one more thing what if you say no what if you say no when it asks for permission

01:01:24   to access something guess what that app is going to break in in all likelihood in some spectacularly

01:01:31   weird way and that's going to lead to more communications with support for that software

01:01:38   developer and now they're going to have to walk you through how to go into system preferences

01:01:42   and find the right pain in order to grant access again so that it does work yeah I'm not nobody

01:01:49   said this was easy and I appreciate that Apple security people are really trying to make the

01:01:53   Mac more secure in a world where the old way of doing computers is being exploited by bad people

01:02:01   that's the bottom line is the old computers used to be really really open and it makes it really

01:02:06   easy for bad people to exploit them in a way that a mobile device is a lot harder but at the same time

01:02:14   the Mac still exists because it's the Mac and it's the old style device and those of us who use it

01:02:21   you know otherwise why do we still have the Mac so there's a limit to that there's a limit to that

01:02:26   and your computer that you own and that you you should not be aggressively getting in your way

01:02:32   and shaming you into not using software you want to use there have and that's that's why I feel like

01:02:40   I understand the motivations of Apple security people but whatever is going on in Catalina right

01:02:46   now it's not good enough it's and and I hope that by the time Catalina reaches us in the fall

01:02:53   it's better and that they're working on this to improve this process because

01:02:59   nobody wants a repeat of Windows Vista and if you look at what happened to Microsoft they

01:03:03   had to do a whole rethink after Vista because it was too much and it frustrated users and it led

01:03:09   to terrible security because users just gave up and approved everything let's uh let's switch

01:03:14   gears a little bit talk about the never-ending story of the 16-inch MacBook Pro oh did it get

01:03:20   announced okay economic daily news says it is coming in October and it will start at three

01:03:27   thousand dollars digitime says in set that it will be launching in September and it will be a bigger

01:03:32   screen in the same size as the 15-inch body right they'll put a 16-inch screen into the same size

01:03:37   body as the 15 and Ming-chi Roger Kuo is sticking to his guns partly saying that the 16-inch with

01:03:43   the new keyboard is still coming in the fall likely October but he has now adjusted uh his

01:03:48   prediction about the MacBook Air and the Pro with the keyboard saying that this will be in 2020 that

01:03:54   they will get the new keyboard now not this year um but it seems like ever there there's a lot of

01:04:01   smoke to suggest that we will still see the 16-inch MacBook Pro this year all the facts of these

01:04:07   reports are kind of converging and part of me when I see Ming-chi Kuo say okay maybe not maybe it'll

01:04:15   be 2020 for this other stuff um I worry a little bit that it's it's echo chambery where um everybody

01:04:22   looked at all the reports and said oh this doesn't make sense and now they're trying to make sense of

01:04:25   it I hope that it is refined based on on facts on the ground that this is actually what's happening

01:04:31   because it does seem to be converging on the idea that this fall there will be this 16-inch MacBook

01:04:36   Pro that's the you know like what happened with the iPad um when you reduce the bezels you can

01:04:42   make the screen bigger so it won't be a bigger computer but it'll be a bigger screen and the

01:04:47   15-inch what we think of now is the 15-inch size um for for three grand which is I believe the

01:04:55   highest sale price for a base model of a of a Mac laptop ever. So what does it say about that?

01:05:04   Well I think and I did I wrote about this last week at Macworld um and it took me down an

01:05:11   interesting rabbit hole that led to a great conspiracy theory but. Love a conspiracy theory

01:05:15   you know I love them. I think Apple really believes that if Pro is on the label it's a it should be a

01:05:22   product for professionals and professionals will pay a lot of money for the product that they want

01:05:27   and that they need and that that's good for Apple because it allows them to create these amazing

01:05:31   cutting-edge products that have lots of expensive components in them and the people who are in those

01:05:36   markets where they absolutely need that professional level gear are happy to pay it it's just like the

01:05:40   people who are going to be happy to buy that Pro Display XDR because they don't view it as

01:05:46   a ridiculously overpriced monitor they view it as a ridiculously underpriced studio monitor which is

01:05:54   different perspective right different different industries have different things and what the

01:05:58   Apple's approach to the Mac Pro has taught me anyway is there was a time when Power Macs

01:06:05   which were the Pro Mac desktop were used by all sorts of people power users not just pros and the

01:06:12   iMac was a toy for consumers and that's not true anymore right like if you look at it today the

01:06:18   Mac Pro has been redefined as this incredibly high-end system that is for these people who will

01:06:23   pay for the super high end and I've got an iMac in front of me I have an iMac Pro but like even

01:06:28   the regular iMac is a very very powerful computer most people don't need a pro desktop from Apple

01:06:36   right so I look at this 3000 for the the 15 inch or 16 inch MacBook Pro and I think

01:06:42   well that's what they're doing they're saying if you want this super awesome system

01:06:48   it's going to cost you it's it's three thousand dollars now I imagine it'll come down in price a

01:06:53   little bit over time and that there will be a corresponding 14 inch model presumably to replace

01:06:59   the 13 inch and that'll happen next year and that'll be cheaper still and there'll be a like

01:07:03   a base model of that or maybe that that low-end 13 inch will stick around for a while and eventually

01:07:08   be replaced and eventually you won't have three thousand to get into the the MacBook Pro just

01:07:13   you know high two thousands to get into the 16 inch MacBook Pro that and that's I think what

01:07:22   Apple I'm not trying to make a value judgment here I think that's what Apple wants Apple wants its

01:07:25   pro line to really mean it and they're okay if if people who like the idea of using a pro Mac but

01:07:32   don't actually need it and aren't really willing to pay the high price for that kind of a product

01:07:39   I think they're okay with those those people being turned off a little bit by it the problem is where

01:07:47   do they go and that's the other part of this there's like well okay what other laptops are

01:07:53   there there's the MacBook Air like literally the consumer laptop if those are pro laptops

01:07:57   the consumer laptop is the MacBook Air one model and that yeah so that that's that's weird I feel

01:08:07   like they can do this they can play this game again at the high end with the pro but where is

01:08:11   that mainstream iMac essentially of consumer laptops and is it the MacBook Air if so the

01:08:18   MacBook Air probably needs a little more variety than it has now one model for everybody else and

01:08:23   this is where the conspiracy theory comes in I had a moment while I was thinking about this where I

01:08:27   thought oh this is where arm happens this is consumer laptops using ARM processors from Apple

01:08:36   and that in the long run that may be the definition of what a pro versus a non-pro laptop

01:08:43   from Apple is is we've got our light long battery life not super powerful but powerful enough I mean

01:08:50   you know the the power that's in the iPad pro is already whatever they said 90 percent of laptops

01:08:56   sold last year or something like that it's like it's already pretty good and then if you need

01:09:00   more pro we have the Intel pro processors over here for you folks so I can see what they're doing

01:09:08   here now there's lots of judgments we can make about like a three thousand dollar laptop and

01:09:12   it is this our developers who are the one of the primary pro user groups in the Mac world going to

01:09:20   like this I think there's a lot to be debated there but once I thought of it in the context

01:09:26   of how Apple treats pro products I had that moment where I'm like oh yeah that's what they're doing

01:09:30   here I can subscribe to this conspiracy theory I think I can jump on board of you all right welcome

01:09:36   welcome to the conspiracy bandwagon I get it right like I think that Apple have recently realized

01:09:42   that they can print money with the pro name and they're doing that now and it's a slice of the

01:09:48   market that's willing to pay for the highest end cutting edge most awesome thing with the high

01:09:54   profit margins and why make a product why handicap if I'm Apple my argument is why handicap my

01:10:01   product why limit my product by making it hit a price point that's lower so that my kind of

01:10:08   mid-range customers can buy one when now I'm losing out on having a higher end product that's

01:10:15   more profitable and then I can put I can put more high-end expensive stuff into as well and on the

01:10:22   desktop that's worked pretty well for them all right today's show is also brought to you by our

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01:12:14   show and all of relay FM so we had some summer of fun #askupgradequestions today because we wanted to

01:12:23   end on a lighter note after what has been an upsetting episode for everybody so our first

01:12:28   question comes from Kate and Kate wants to know Myke what was driving Jeremy's boat like now this

01:12:35   is a this is a deep cut here so I'll put a link in the show notes to some Instagram posts from friend

01:12:41   of the show Jeremy Burge who is the chief emoji officer at Emojipedia and the creator of world

01:12:50   emoji day I usually introduce Jeremy to people that I know as the creator of emoji which frustrates

01:12:59   him immensely because that's what people think he actually is a lot of the time I think it's hilarious

01:13:05   Jeremy did not create emoji but we all know Jeremy Burge right Emojipedia but anyway Jeremy lives on

01:13:11   a narrow boat now and sails the canals in the UK and over the weekend me and my wife Idina we went

01:13:19   and we spent some time on the boat and we I drove the boat and it was wonderful Jason boat life is

01:13:24   quite a thing it looked great I love those I love the little little boats and the little canals and

01:13:31   stuff in England and there's a whole like English boating culture where you just kind of move your

01:13:36   boat and then you sleep on your boat and then you go to the pub and you go back to the boat and move

01:13:40   the boat again yeah well summary live what a way to live that's part of my summer of fun Casey wants

01:13:46   to know do you have any summer music recommendations I don't know do you well I really like the new

01:13:55   Taiko album Taiko album Taiko I don't know but it's very chill you know like if you're looking

01:14:00   for some chill on your on your summer playlists I recommend that immensely I don't think I have

01:14:08   anything that I'm that I'm going to put up for this summer I'd spent a lot of time with Apple

01:14:14   music playlists so and I like the alternative genre there's an alternative chill playlist

01:14:22   there's a there's the a-list alternative playlist the alt pop playlist is nice for those kind of

01:14:27   poppy songs of the summer there's a lot of good stuff in there so I just I just use the Apple

01:14:32   music playlist they're great Thomas wants to know what is your favorite beach activity frisbee

01:14:37   volleyball surfing something else Jason what's your favorite beach activity reading that's

01:14:44   perfectly fine for me my friend and then and then you walk into the water and let the let the the

01:14:50   water go on your on your feet and maybe more of your body and you cool off and then you go back

01:14:54   out I do often bring a frisbee to the beach I have done that and that's fun too to throw a frisbee

01:15:02   around or a nerf football it's another thing it's a American football brain ball American nerf

01:15:08   you could use a brain ball but it would get sandy and I'm hoarding the brain balls my favorite beach

01:15:15   activity is getting in the ocean I like getting in the ocean yeah it's great if it's my favorite

01:15:19   as long as you're at the ocean with that beach Zach wants to know what is your pool side or by

01:15:25   the beach beverage of choice oh that's a good question well I would I used to say beer but

01:15:33   I can't drink most beer now so that is sad so I'm gonna I have a I'm really liking there's a cider

01:15:41   from a place in Oregon that I really like that's a pineapple flavored apple cider pineapple apple

01:15:51   cider that's very good it's all about the pineapple mic so that's a that's a good one for me and my

01:15:57   classic poolside beverage of choice which I can still do with gluten-free beer is a version of the

01:16:05   old British classic the lager top oh lovely where beer and lemonade beer and lemonade but not

01:16:12   lemonade like American lemonade like Sprite yes although you know what American lemonade works

01:16:19   great too okay okay cool this was this one a funny thing for me the first time one of the first times

01:16:24   I came to America when I was of drinking age and I asked for a vodka and lemonade and was very just

01:16:29   very confused bartender just very very confused I had no idea that it would be such a problem but it

01:16:34   was um I I don't have a specific drink that I like but I like to peruse a cocktail menu if such a

01:16:41   thing is available to me at the poolside nice area that I'm at Benjamin wants to know as fellow glasses

01:16:47   boys I like that we're all glasses boys how do you enjoy the ocean without losing your frames

01:16:52   I take them off I take them off that's right or you lose them that's that both of those things

01:16:58   have happened to my vision is not so bad that I can't see without my glasses I can still see with

01:17:03   my glasses I can't see very well at all without my glasses but I can I can see well enough to know

01:17:11   where I am and which degree the shore is or which direction the shore is I can do that um and so

01:17:18   that uh that has to be it I when I have tried to go into the surf with my glasses on you know what

01:17:24   happens they the surf comes over my head and knocks my glasses off and then we have to walk around and

01:17:29   find my glasses floating in the water all they get like super dirty and you can't see anymore right

01:17:34   because the salt exactly water it's so I was actually thinking after our our recent trip to

01:17:39   Hawaii that I may actually see about getting some prescription goggles that's a good call

01:17:47   so that I can just put those on and go out there and I can still see and also not have my glasses

01:17:53   washed off and I might I might do something like that but um by the way backing up one

01:17:58   Two Towns Cider House is the name of the company that makes Pacific pineapple so check that out

01:18:04   cider people follow-on question from Leafy when it gets really sunny do you rock the shades over

01:18:09   glasses look or the shades on contacts look or do you just bear the sun with only glasses

01:18:14   Leafy has left out what I think is the best situation it's just to get prescription sunglasses

01:18:19   which is what I do I have prescription sunglasses and I have uh sunglass clips that clip on

01:18:26   clip ons and therefore I don't need to carry around two pairs of glasses I just have a little

01:18:32   little clips I think I've seen the Jason Snell clip on if you've been outside with me in the

01:18:37   sun you have I believe I've seen that Brian asked if you could make any piece of tech beach proof

01:18:43   what would it be so I took this to be quite literal right like beach proof for me would

01:18:50   mean that it is impervious to everything that I would maybe have a problem with at the beach so

01:18:56   for example I want to be my iPhone I would want to not get greasy from sun cream and I want to still

01:19:01   be able to see it in the sun that's good I feel like we've come a long way with beach proof tech

01:19:07   like the Kindle now being on top of everything else it's waterproof so it's basically completely

01:19:14   beach proof now and that's great the iPhone water resistant also good but you're right it could be

01:19:20   a little bit better and then I had I was in the water with my Apple watch and that was really

01:19:26   great because it is fine in the water now so I'm not sure I've got anything air pods maybe I don't

01:19:36   know that's about all like I feel like the beach tech situation is pretty decent now all right we

01:19:43   have a question from Elizabeth lake or ocean oh ocean ocean right for sure for sure I mean John

01:19:51   Syracuse I can make his comments about mud beaches on mud lakes and you know what a mountain lake can

01:19:56   be delightful but but the ocean is the best especially if you get a protected like inlet or

01:20:05   something but yeah the ocean is is the way to go and we have a question from stay how do you pick

01:20:12   the type of vacation that you go on next wow well for for us it is a function of what time of year

01:20:20   it is and our you know where have we been recently and do we have a plan and do we have a budget and

01:20:26   all of those things so it's a it's a very complicated process and then for me additionally

01:20:31   it's how long has it been since we've been to Hawaii because if it's been too long then I just

01:20:35   want to go back to Hawaii because that's my favorite place but you know so we'll right now

01:20:42   we're doing a bunch of stuff where I'm going to Oregon like six times in five months because

01:20:47   my daughter is going to the University of Oregon so we're doing a lot of trips to Oregon and so

01:20:52   that's taking up a lot of our travel time and then there are family things Lauren's family especially

01:20:57   they often will do family get-togethers and so that's why I was in Idaho in the winter because

01:21:02   they did a thing for my father-in-law's birthday I'm hoping to do a big milestone kind of vacation

01:21:10   next year so we're talking about that and where that might be and I have a big milestone wedding

01:21:15   anniversary coming up in a few weeks and we're trying to figure that one out too so it really is

01:21:19   it's an art and not a science and there's a lot of variables so I don't have a method beyond

01:21:25   you know you just kind of got to go with it you place and also how long has it been since I've

01:21:30   been to Hawaii that's the that's the key consideration yeah ours is just whatever we

01:21:34   feel like doing like they say art not a science there was a there was a period where a lot of our

01:21:40   vacations got dragged around by events and this I know happens to you too where you you do travel

01:21:45   and then you're like oh well if we're gonna go there then I guess that's that's a big thing for

01:21:49   us yeah and that can be good it can also get frustrating so like we did those macworld cruises

01:21:54   for a bunch of years and it was really great because it was a a cheap cruise because like I

01:22:01   was covered because I was speaking on it and all that and that was great the problem was that after

01:22:05   a few years of that literally every vacation we took was just determined by where the cruise

01:22:09   itinerary was and it was a cruise and you know even for a cheap cruise after you do like four

01:22:16   or five of them in a row you think I need to not do this anymore so I prefer having more control

01:22:23   over my vacation life but sometimes that happens where like we why did we spend a week in Europe

01:22:30   last year or week and a half in Europe last year it was because we were coming to your wedding

01:22:35   and so we're like okay well we've got a trip that we're going to let's build a vacation around it

01:22:39   and sometimes that happens too which is great last question comes from Noah and Noah asked a

01:22:45   wonderful question I'm so pleased somebody asked Jason how is your outside Ikea furniture pillows

01:22:52   serving you this summer people may remember Frozone Quest for episode 213 of Upgrade how are

01:22:59   they doing they're doing great they're outside right now you can sit on them they provide a

01:23:06   cushion and they're they're lovely and when we have have people over we can entertain them and

01:23:13   they can sit on the cushions and it's nice I need to buy a couple more and it's one of those things

01:23:19   where one of these days I'll go over to Ikea and see if they are selling them but I'm not ordering

01:23:23   them online thank you to everybody who sent in a summer of fun hashtag ask upgrade question if you

01:23:30   would like to send in and ask an upgrade question which is more regular for next week's episode feel

01:23:35   free to do that with the hashtag ask upgrade on twitter and they go into a list for us to pick

01:23:40   up on thank you for everybody who sent one in today and who sends them in all the time we really

01:23:44   really appreciate it don't forget we're back next week but on Tuesday and we'll be talking about the

01:23:50   apple results among many other things let's see if we can make the apple results a summer of fun

01:23:54   topic Jason what about that I don't know how we're going to do that yet but maybe I'll think about it

01:23:59   the third financial quarter is the most fun summer of financials

01:24:04   you can find today's show notes at relays.fm/upgrades/256 I want to thank our sponsors

01:24:12   again that is Pingdom, SaneBox and TextExpander for their support of this episode don't forget

01:24:18   in case you have forgotten and you want to rectify that we're going to be doing a live show in San

01:24:24   Francisco on August 22nd big relay fm live show I'll be there Jason will be there we're working

01:24:30   on some stuff we've got some really exciting things going on for that so still got a few

01:24:34   tickets left tickets are going to sell out for this we are moving towards it being sold out so

01:24:40   if you have been waiting don't wait you can find Jason online at sixcarlo.com the incomparable.com

01:24:45   is @jsnell j s n e double l i am @imike i m y k e and we will be back next time

01:24:51   until then say goodbye Jason Snow goodbye everybody

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