184: The Claim Chowder Secret Society


00:00:00   [Music]

00:00:08   From Relay FM, this is Upgrade, episode 184. Today's show is brought to you by Squarespace,

00:00:14   Fresh Books, and Eero. My name is Myke Curley. I'm joined by the wonderful Mr. Jason Snell.

00:00:20   Hello, wonderful Myke Curley. How are you?

00:00:22   I'm very well. We're recording earlier today because it's Daylight Savings Time's time.

00:00:25   Nope. I don't know what you're talking about. It's exactly the same time as always.

00:00:29   Why am I so tired?

00:00:30   We're in that two week span until my time changes.

00:00:33   Your time's changed, my time will change later.

00:00:36   But Myke, nobody wants to hear about the curvature of the Earth, it's time for Snell Talk.

00:00:40   Our question this week, I really like the lore of this question, it comes from Myke.

00:00:45   Myke asks, "Jason, if you were the focus of a police manhunt, which of your tech products

00:00:51   should the bloodhounds smell to make sure that they can track you down?"

00:00:56   Why am I helping the police, Myke?

00:00:57   Why?

00:00:58   helping them in advance? Yeah, you should be very--maybe you want to throw the bloodhounds

00:01:02   off the scent with this answer, I don't know. It's one of my favorite Snell Talk questions

00:01:07   because it's thrown all kind of just like preconceived notion out of the window and

00:01:13   has created this world that we now live in. So I guess really, the question that Myke

00:01:20   is actually asking is which of your technology products do you have with you the most, like

00:01:25   would be my expectation. But I don't know, I feel like there's a whole angle here which

00:01:29   is what, what he's actually asking is, "What tech products do you own that most carry your

00:01:37   scent?" And I have an answer. Although I think maybe the Apple Watch is the answer, my guess

00:01:45   is that I'm going to be wearing my Apple Watch during the manhunt.

00:01:49   Yes, during the fugitive runaway.

00:01:52   so they're not going to be able to see it, but it's highly unlikely that I would leave

00:01:57   home with my AirPods because, I mean, first off, you gotta be on your toes when you're

00:02:06   the subject of a police manhunt, and the last thing you need is to put in headphones, unless

00:02:11   you're, you know, talking to a collaborator or something, but I think you'd want to be

00:02:14   in airplane mode, you wouldn't want to be tracked, and you certainly wouldn't want to

00:02:17   cut yourself off from sounds that might allow you to evade capture. So I would probably

00:02:22   leave my AirPods at home and you know what? They get stuck in my ears when I listen to

00:02:28   them and I would bet you that there is on my AirPods enough of a residue for the Bloodhounds

00:02:34   to follow me and find my ears, which hopefully would be attached to my body during the manhunt.

00:02:43   Although you never know. Who knows what might happen. So I'm going to say AirPods. That's

00:02:46   my answer. Final answer, Myke.

00:02:48   >> Thank you so much to Myke for sending this question in. I encourage people to take a

00:02:54   lesson from Myke's wonderful question to try and build out the lore of Snell Talk a little

00:03:00   bit more.

00:03:01   >> Oh, God.

00:03:02   >> We've got a whole thing going on. So you could just send in a tweet with the hashtag

00:03:05   Snell Talk that get dropped into a document for me to pick up at a later date. Thank you

00:03:09   to Myke for that suggestion.

00:03:11   >> Some real-time follow-up, Joe Steele in the chat room did suggest that you could also

00:03:14   use my mechanical keyboard as a place to get my smell and then they would find my fingers.

00:03:20   That's not a bad idea, not a bad idea, thank you, don't relay that to the police.

00:03:23   I bet there were some crumbs in there, you know?

00:03:25   Yes, so they might, the bloodhounds might be attracted to my pantry instead if they

00:03:31   smell the crumbs, I don't know, but yeah, anyway, I'm gonna say, the crumbs don't carry

00:03:37   my DNA, do they? I don't know.

00:03:40   That's how that works.

00:03:41   Maybe if they fell out of your mouth, who knows, I don't know how you eat.

00:03:43   I like how you said that, you said "I don't know, DNA?" Like that's a magic wand that

00:03:49   police use to find people. Maybe it is. Maybe it is. Alright.

00:03:52   The DNA magicians. Let's start with some follow up. In regards to Apple's laptop lineup, I

00:03:58   had a couple of questions that I wanted to ask you. We were talking about the Air last

00:04:02   week and its kind of failed attempts to replace, well the MacBook, its failed attempts to replace

00:04:08   the Air, right? And that the MacBook Air is sticking around. The MacBook has not kind

00:04:12   have done a job in getting rid of it. So we had Omar ask, "Isn't the MacBook Pro, the

00:04:19   non-touch bar, what is lovingly known as the MacBook escape, the actual spiritual successor

00:04:25   to the Air, not the MacBook?"

00:04:28   Yeah, I think he makes a great point. It depends on how you view it. I actually wrote, after

00:04:35   our conversation last week, I wrote a piece for Macworld that we can put in the show notes.

00:04:40   called MacBook Air, why won't it die? This is the grand cycle. We've talked about it

00:04:44   before the grand cycle. I write something, we talk about it, I write something else that

00:04:47   just it just keeps on going, which is not I got an angry email from one person who's

00:04:54   like why are you advocating the death of the MacBook Air? It's great. I said no, no, no,

00:04:57   I'm not. I'm just wondering why Apple has gotten to this point and we talked about that.

00:05:01   So I think Omar makes a good point. I think there are two successors to the MacBook Air.

00:05:06   I think the MacBook is its successor in the sense of

00:05:09   let's make a thin and light laptop for people.

00:05:12   That is like thin and light laptop is part of the charter

00:05:15   of the MacBook Air.

00:05:16   If you look at tech specs, the MacBook escape,

00:05:20   which is this weird, let's also mention weird computer

00:05:24   in terms of where it's positioned,

00:05:26   'cause it's like the other 13 inch MacBook Pro,

00:05:30   which has always been strange.

00:05:33   But if you look at its specs,

00:05:35   it's using the what 15 watt Intel core processors

00:05:39   that are, that's the equivalent of what's in the MacBook Air.

00:05:42   The MacBook Air is using the fifth generation,

00:05:44   whereas the MacBook Pro is using the current generation,

00:05:46   which is I think the seventh generation,

00:05:48   but they are using those processors and it weighs,

00:05:53   and I did, I looked it up for my article,

00:05:57   it weighs less than an ounce more

00:06:00   than the MacBook Air 13 inch.

00:06:02   And I believe the MacBook Air's thickest point is the consistent thickness of the MacBook

00:06:07   Pro. They're kind of around the same size and width at that point.

00:06:11   I think the MacBook Escape is actually thinner than the thickest point of the MacBook Air.

00:06:18   But obviously the MacBook Air has that wedge shape, which the MacBook Pro does not. But

00:06:22   still it's three pounds. It's a three pound laptop that weighs the same. And since they

00:06:28   cut its price by $200 it also cost $1299. So I think they are dual successors and it

00:06:35   depends on what you're looking for in a MacBook Air that leads you down the path of the thin

00:06:40   and light laptop or the one that's got comparable processors and comparable weight than a light

00:06:45   laptop. Say a pound, it goes from three to two if you get the MacBook. But I think Omer

00:06:50   is absolutely right that that MacBook Escape is also a successor to the MacBook Air and

00:06:56   That makes it even weirder that it's called a MacBook Pro.

00:07:01   And yet there's also another 13 inch MacBook Pro

00:07:04   with touch bar that has completely different features

00:07:06   and different port configurations and all of that.

00:07:08   And it's just something happened.

00:07:11   So a series of things clearly happened

00:07:13   in product development at Apple

00:07:15   that led that product to be labeled the way it is

00:07:18   and yet designed the way it is

00:07:20   that has led to the MacBook Air lasting suspiciously longer

00:07:24   than Apple, I think, intended it to. I got a good piece of feedback from somebody after

00:07:30   I talked about this with Jon Gruber on the talk show last week, who said, you know, Apple

00:07:34   sold old laptops several times before. And my response to him was something like, "Yeah,

00:07:41   but they sold the old laptop." To--if this rumor is true, like, to continue updating

00:07:47   the old laptop and, like, keeping it alive and updating it, that's the part where it

00:07:52   gets really weird. Instead of it being like, also old laptop is available, but they like,

00:07:57   they gave it a processor boost last year. And now this rumor is that they're, and it's

00:08:01   a rumor, but that they're updating it again and maybe cutting its price. Like, that's

00:08:05   the weird part about it. Keeping an old product around just available is not the same as-

00:08:10   Right. It's not just the hanger on, is it, at this point?

00:08:12   Right, well, and that's the speculation part of this, but that's the thought, is it doesn't

00:08:17   seem like a dead product, because there's some stirrings there, and that's the weird

00:08:22   part is like that they can't get rid of it and in fact they may be forced to update it

00:08:27   and that's a weird thing too. But I think I have recommended that MacBook escape to

00:08:33   people because it is the 13-inch MacBook Air successor in many ways and it's the same price

00:08:38   as the MacBook. So literally you can say which do you prioritize? Do you want a little more

00:08:43   powerful laptop but it's a pound heavier? It's the same as the 13-inch Air and it's

00:08:48   got two ports, or do you want the one port but one pound lighter thin and light MacBook,

00:08:54   and then you have to choose your priority there. But in a parallel universe, in an alternate

00:09:03   world, I think that MacBook escape is the all-new MacBook Air, and the MacBook is the

00:09:09   MacBook, but I think Apple decided that the MacBook Air was a weird name, and that the

00:09:16   if there was a MacBook Air it would be the MacBook, but then they called the

00:09:19   MacBook the MacBook. Maybe they should have called that the MacBook Air and the

00:09:22   Mac Escape should have been called the MacBook. Well this is the problem.

00:09:26   And I suspect that this is what happened in a meeting at Apple. This exact, it's like

00:09:32   "Well, wait, what? Huh? This is way too complicated." And somebody probably said

00:09:36   "This is way too complicated. Let's just sell two MacBook Pro 13 inches with

00:09:40   completely different specs." That's much less complicated and the answer is it's

00:09:44   it's not less complicated. But anyway, Omer's point is well taken, it's a weird situation.

00:09:50   I am positive that somebody at Apple really views the MacBook line as some place where

00:09:54   they're getting their product line in order and their naming refined and it's gonna be

00:09:59   clear eventually and they're probably frustrated that because of the way the product line has

00:10:05   gone it hasn't gotten there yet. Unlike the iPad which is resolving itself, the MacBook

00:10:11   line is still confused. So maybe this year, we'll see.

00:10:15   It is worth noting as well that they are not comparable in price, but the 13-inch MacBook

00:10:22   Pro starts at like $1300, but it has some specs that kind of sit in between the two

00:10:28   current MacBook Airs, right? Like I think it has like a 128GB SSD where the 1200 MacBook

00:10:36   Air has a 256, so obviously it's a more powerful, more modern, and better in a bunch of ways

00:10:41   machine, like it has a retina screen and stuff like that. I don't know if you could really

00:10:46   think of it as just a flat out replacement because the bottom of the line one is like

00:10:51   $300 more expensive.

00:10:54   Exactly, exactly, and if they were to take it down to $999, let's say, and get rid of

00:11:02   the MacBook Air, one of the things they would probably have to do is reduce the specs further,

00:11:05   if you look at the MacBook escape at 128 SSD, it's like I'm not sure they really want to

00:11:11   go down below that to like a 64 SSD. So it's fascinating to see like what, you know, Apple

00:11:20   is trying to balance out what's available with their profit margins, which we don't

00:11:26   get to see, and make the best guesses, I think, in terms of the most profitability to grind

00:11:33   out of these things. Plus, I think there is, unstated on this episode, but we mentioned

00:11:38   it last week, the real reason the MacBook Air survives is because there are probably

00:11:43   some huge industries or sectors into which Apple sells where they've realized they can't

00:11:50   get away with saying our laptops start at $12.99. And education is a good example of

00:11:55   that. Apple's having a tough time in education anyway because Chromebooks are doing so well,

00:11:58   the iPad is doing less well in education because Chromebooks have been so successful, and then

00:12:02   Macbooks which probably aren't great but I know a lot especially in individual students

00:12:07   in higher ed and even in high school do like Apple laptops and so they sell some there

00:12:12   and they're you know and they're probably other industries too and there may be even

00:12:15   a general sense that at $9.99 they will get people in the door and at $12.99 they won't.

00:12:22   So they're grappling with that part too which is just how you know how do we set the base

00:12:28   price for getting into the Mac ecosystem and the Apple ecosystem with a laptop and clearly

00:12:34   if they thought $12.99 would do it the MacBook Air wouldn't exist anymore but it does so

00:12:39   obviously it matters.

00:12:41   And I also want to talk about this wonderful piece of follow-up from Mac who I am dubbing

00:12:47   a super upgrade in for Mac's work that you will find out in a moment just what makes

00:12:52   Mac a super upgrade in.

00:12:54   But we got this email from Mac and Mac says "On episode 29 of Upgrade in March 2015,

00:13:01   during a discussion of the iPad mini continuing to be sold with outdated internals, Jason

00:13:06   says the following "This is a ghost product.

00:13:09   In 3 or 4 years there'll probably still be a 13-inch MacBook Air in the product line

00:13:14   and will say the same thing, which is why is it still there?

00:13:18   And the answer is they can sell that for $799, but it's cheap and it's old and it's fine.

00:13:24   Now that is unbelievable. What makes Mac a super upgradient is Mac heard this, then set

00:13:30   a calendar event and that's for three years, three years time. And that's how this came

00:13:36   up. So bravo, Mr. Snell, you did it.

00:13:41   What I replied to Mac and I said, if if if the cutting the price rumor is true and it

00:13:46   it ends up just being the same old 13 inch air, but now it's $799, then I am going to

00:13:51   take a victory lap. But you know, it is, look, Apple does this stuff, so it's not super surprising

00:13:58   that I would extrapolate something like that. You know, and it felt at the time when the

00:14:03   MacBook came out, right? Like, wow, that's $1299 and the air still exists. That's quite

00:14:08   a gap for them to close. So here we are. I just, I think it's amazing and a little disquieting

00:14:13   that the stupid things we say on podcasts, somebody's out there going, "Oh yes, in four

00:14:17   years I will ask you about this." It's the claim chowder secret society.

00:14:24   Well, I would like to, you're not going to like this, I would like to propose a name

00:14:29   for this. I follow up this way as "Fortune Snailing." That is what I would like to call

00:14:36   when you make claims for the future, "Fortune Snailing." So there you go, that's what we're

00:14:42   going to attempt to roll with against Jason's absolute disdain.

00:14:47   As usual, I've filled my names with things.

00:14:49   But you know, history has shown that I can wear you down over time.

00:14:55   Let's take a break and thank FreshBooks for supporting this week's show.

00:14:58   Our friends at FreshBooks can save you freelancers and business owners time with their cloud

00:15:03   accounting software because it is so easy to use.

00:15:07   They have observed that it can save their customers 192 hours, that's many hours that

00:15:12   you could be doing way better work than being knee deep in invoicing.

00:15:17   Because FreshBooks makes it easy.

00:15:19   They make it easy for you to send your invoices out, they make it easy for you to track expenses

00:15:23   and also, maybe most importantly, in getting paid online.

00:15:27   FreshBooks has drastically reduced the time it takes for their over 10 million customers

00:15:31   to deal with their paperwork.

00:15:33   It's not all about invoicing, right?

00:15:35   This is what I love, it's great, you can send invoices so quickly, it's so easy to have

00:15:39   a great system for it, but FreshBooks is just a great accounting tool for you.

00:15:43   For example, they have a new feature called the Projects feature.

00:15:46   This you can share files and messages with your clients directly, even with contractors

00:15:51   and employees, so you can see how things happen when everything all lives in one place, you

00:15:56   can keep track of the invoices, the time, all of the files and messages of people all

00:16:01   all

00:16:21   an unrestricted 30-day free trial to listeners of this show with no credit card required.

00:16:27   All you have to do is go to freshbooks.com/upgrade and enter upgrade in the how you hear about us

00:16:33   section so they will know that you came to them from this show. Once again that is freshbooks.com/upgrade

00:16:38   for an unrestricted 30-day free trial. Our thanks to Freshbooks for their continued support of this

00:16:44   show and relay FM.

00:16:47   So last week we spoke about the sequel to Alien, Aliens, and I had two little pieces

00:16:52   of funny follow up that I wanted to talk about that we got sent in.

00:16:56   The first came from Vincent about the way that James Cameron actually pitched Aliens

00:17:00   to the studio.

00:17:03   Apparently this comes from an article in Cinema Blend.

00:17:07   James Cameron took a pen and wrote on a whiteboard the word Alien.

00:17:12   Then he put an S next to it, then he drew a vertical line down the S, turning it into

00:17:18   a dollar sign.

00:17:19   So it was "Alien Dollar."

00:17:21   And that was how he sold Aliens to the studio, and it seems like that ended up working out

00:17:27   pretty well for everyone involved.

00:17:29   Yep.

00:17:30   And we got an email this very morning from listener Douglas, Upgrading Douglas, who is

00:17:37   from London and said his first job out of college he was at Pinewood Studios and wandering

00:17:44   around the film lot at lunchtime he stumbled on the full-size aliens tank which is mostly

00:17:50   made of plywood because they made a full-sized one for the people to be but then when you

00:17:54   draw saw it driving around it was a remote controlled one so and he said he saw also

00:17:59   various Marines from aliens walking around in their costume but full metal jacket was

00:18:04   also being made at the same time, so there were various eras of soldiers wandering around

00:18:09   Pinewood Studios, which is a pretty cool story from Douglas.

00:18:13   I saw this article on The Verge about an Apple patent. Now, patents are patents are patents,

00:18:19   right? They're going to be what they're going to be. But I found it interesting to show

00:18:22   some potential future product development from Apple in the keyboard department. So

00:18:26   this patent was filed in 2016, so it is not in kind of, it is not a thing that has been

00:18:32   done because of complaints about current keyboard reliability. This is probably just something

00:18:38   Apple was maybe aware of and were thinking about. This is about creating a keyboard that

00:18:43   could resist debris. And there are two possible methods that Apple have outlined in this pattern.

00:18:49   One is pretty boring and one is more interesting. The boring one is just sealing off gaps and

00:18:54   my expectation is they would maybe try and do something more akin to a smart keyboard.

00:18:59   are no gaps because there are no gaps and the key switches are all kind of hidden. But

00:19:04   the better one that I thought was kind of hilarious is by using some kind of membrane

00:19:09   underneath the key switch that when you press would force air to blow out anything hidden

00:19:15   in the keyboard every single time that a key is pressed.

00:19:18   Every time you type you compress the air that blows out the dust from your keyboard. Yeah

00:19:24   - Yeah, it's funny.

00:19:25   I don't see how sealing off a keyboard

00:19:27   so that nothing can get into it is patentable.

00:19:32   Isn't that something that people have been doing for ages?

00:19:36   Like, back decades?

00:19:37   - There are these, obviously with all patents,

00:19:39   it is like, if you do it in this one very specific way.

00:19:43   - In this one way.

00:19:44   I think it's funny that there was also that patent

00:19:46   that was reported recently,

00:19:47   which was, which made everybody freak out,

00:19:49   which was, what if instead of a keyboard,

00:19:52   just had a screen and you typed on that and that was the keyboard and everyone's no zero

00:19:59   travel keyboard. What I like about this is that Apple has somebody in their input devices

00:20:07   group who is thinking about innovation in input devices including keyboards. What I

00:20:13   don't like about this is that I worry that Apple is going to get really excited about

00:20:19   a new keyboard innovation that just makes a lousy keyboard. Now, some of you will say,

00:20:24   "They've already done that!" Maybe they have, maybe they haven't. I do worry a little bit

00:20:30   about that, but I like the fact that Apple doesn't look at something like the keyboard

00:20:35   and say, "Oh, that's a solved problem. We just are just going to use the same keyboard

00:20:40   forever and it could never get any better." The downside of that is if they do something

00:20:44   they think is better and that we don't think is better.

00:20:48   - Yeah, 'cause what this patent could have come from

00:20:51   was a directive of, we need to make these keyboards

00:20:54   thinner and thinner and just find ways to do that

00:20:58   and then they come up with stuff like this

00:20:59   as opposed to like, we need to make

00:21:01   the thin keyboard better.

00:21:02   Do you know what I mean?

00:21:03   It's like, not necessarily trying to improve the keyboard,

00:21:05   but just to stop them from going wrong in the future.

00:21:09   - And while this might not be about people's complaints

00:21:11   about the MacBook keyboard and the new keyboards

00:21:13   and the MacBook Pros too. It's also possible that in their work on those keyboards, they

00:21:18   noticed that there were issues with that the thinner you get it, that smaller amounts of

00:21:25   debris can cause problems. And this may be the result of them saying, "Okay, how do we

00:21:32   solve those problems so that they don't affect us?" And that they are related. It wouldn't

00:21:37   be related to the complaints, but it might be related to the awareness that it could

00:21:40   be a problem. I told Casey Liss that he should take this article and hold it at a 70 degree

00:21:47   angle and blow compressed air on it in order to clean out the patent. Yeah. Interesting.

00:21:53   Like I said, it's kind of a two-edged sword, but I like that Apple is trying this stuff.

00:21:59   I'm not entirely convinced that the touch screen keyboard idea is a worse idea than

00:22:08   an increasingly thin physical keyboard.

00:22:10   I think at some point-- - I think it's wild

00:22:12   to even assume that that is not an inevitable future.

00:22:17   Like, because everyone growing up now types more on glass.

00:22:22   - Yeah, and there are haptics, and if it's a large space

00:22:27   and you can find a way to set your fingers,

00:22:30   and I mean, that's the challenge is like,

00:22:33   and touch bar fails at this, right?

00:22:34   So this is one of the challenges,

00:22:36   is having a touch screen where you have to look down to orient

00:22:40   because you can't do it on feel

00:22:41   because your feel will activate it, right?

00:22:43   So I think that,

00:22:46   and I don't know if they filed patents on this,

00:22:48   but that's the kind of stuff you need to think about

00:22:50   in patent, which is, okay, a touch screen

00:22:53   that you can type on, yeah, we can do that.

00:22:56   But like, how do you do,

00:22:58   how do you design a touch interface

00:23:00   that allows you to touch it in order to orient?

00:23:04   And that means like by feel and not visually,

00:23:07   because that's what is the great thing about physical keys

00:23:10   is you can orient.

00:23:11   So if they can figure out ways to give you feedback,

00:23:14   not just while you're typing, although that's useful,

00:23:16   but also while you're looking at a screen

00:23:18   while your hands are laying down on a surface,

00:23:21   if you can provide a way

00:23:23   to get those things oriented properly,

00:23:25   and I don't know, it may be,

00:23:27   this is just, I'm throwing this out there,

00:23:28   I'm not patenting this idea,

00:23:29   but it may be that the future is not

00:23:33   finding a way to create some sort of surface that you can activate to make it have a texture

00:23:38   in certain points so you can put your hands on it. It may be like the sensor in the camera

00:23:43   above the screen sees the position of your hands and knows what the home position is. So wherever

00:23:52   you put your hands on it is right. Like, right? I mean, they could do that. That actually is not

00:23:59   an impossible thing. Somebody may write in and say, "Well, they've already shown that somewhere.

00:24:03   somebody has demoed that, but like there are ways to do it. And so I don't think it's outlandish.

00:24:07   - Or that predictive texting just gets so good that nothing needs to know, they just

00:24:14   work it out, right? It just ends up getting better and better.

00:24:18   - Source spot right now, but you're right. It could be, and the other thing is then you

00:24:22   also have alternative input methods like keyboards have alternative methods like cording keyboards

00:24:27   or Dvorak keyboards or, you know, ones with different shapes. But once it's a plane of

00:24:31   glass you can do things like swipe keyboards as an example but there are

00:24:35   all sorts of things you can do with that space plus you can use it as an

00:24:38   interface space you could use it as a drawing space but as a person who types

00:24:43   words for me that would be the biggest issue is I can type pretty fast on an

00:24:48   ipad pro 12.9 keyboard but there's this issue of like having to look down at it

00:24:53   because I don't know where my fingers are exactly on the keyboard and most of

00:24:57   my typing errors on an iPhone or an iPad come because I just didn't press the

00:25:03   right spot. I was slightly off, and part of that is it's small enough on the

00:25:07   iPhone that a small error will get you the wrong key, but part of it is that I

00:25:12   don't know where my fingers are on the screen because I can't orient by touch,

00:25:16   because if I touch, I'm setting off an interaction. That's another thing where

00:25:19   you think about 3D touch. That's another possibility with something like this is

00:25:23   you could have a surface that is not instantly activated by touch in all modes, and then

00:25:30   like for typing you might actually need to apply slightly more pressure to an area, and

00:25:35   that way you could actually do some kind of touch orientation, get a little haptic or

00:25:39   something and then start typing and with a little extra force. I mean there are lots

00:25:44   of things. Yes, I guess what I'm saying is in an alternate life I was apparently a keyboard

00:25:50   researcher somewhere because I think it's fascinating. I've talked to people who work

00:25:55   in the input device group at Apple and like they're really into it and I and bless them

00:26:00   because I think I want them to investigate other ways of input because this is not the

00:26:05   be all end all. The keyboard which was invented not too long ago is not the be all end all

00:26:10   of input.

00:26:11   I mean there is an argument to be made that having a physical keyboard and a laptop is

00:26:16   as wild as having a physical keyboard and an iPhone, right, as you go into the future.

00:26:21   The fact that you have this whole space where it's just one fixed input method is potentially

00:26:27   not the best thing going into the future, right? Like, yes, you may have a worse typing

00:26:32   experience by traditional standards, by traditional means, but what if it enables new ways of

00:26:38   manipulating software and computing that we don't have right now in the way that we didn't

00:26:42   before the iPhone. The iPhone not having a fixed keyboard has enabled so much innovation

00:26:49   that could potentially happen in a laptop form factor if there were two screens instead

00:26:53   of one.

00:26:54   Yep.

00:26:55   Should we do some upstream news?

00:26:57   Sure, let's do it.

00:26:59   Barack Obama is reportedly in talks to create content for Netflix. According to a report

00:27:04   from the New York Times, Netflix is currently negotiating with the Obama family to produce

00:27:10   a series of exclusive shows for their platform. It is said that they are not planning to use

00:27:15   this as a political platform per se against the current administration, but to highlight

00:27:20   inspirational stories that could have an angle on them which carry some of what Barack Obama

00:27:24   was attempting to do in office. So giving the Obama family a platform to talk about

00:27:29   their views and opinions on immigration, nutrition, foreign policy, climate change and healthcare

00:27:34   are some that the New York Times report outlined. Apparently, both Amazon and Apple have also,

00:27:41   as you can imagine, voiced similar interest in talking with the Obama family about this

00:27:46   project.

00:27:47   Yeah, second acts for former presidents is always a, you know, it's a challenge. Like,

00:27:53   what do you do? They do speaking things, they do...

00:27:55   Books, loads of books.

00:27:57   The books and things like that. I think this is interesting. In the New York Times story,

00:28:01   it up against sort of like the idea of the speaking tour. That what if in the 21st century

00:28:08   one of the ways that presidents have their post-presidency career is instead of having

00:28:16   the big speaking tours where they get paid a lot of money, they have a media platform.

00:28:22   And Obama seems like the kind of person who would be good at that. And I don't think we're

00:28:26   we're going to get like the Obama show. I don't think that's going to happen, but I

00:28:31   think the idea that this might be where he makes his money and also feels like he's influencing

00:28:39   conversation. I don't think that what this is going to end up being is something like

00:28:44   the Obama news network, right? Where it's like instead of Fox News, there's Obama news.

00:28:49   Like a series of documentaries about life in America or something.

00:28:54   Yeah you look at what I'm gonna, it's a funny parallel, but if you look at what David Letterman

00:28:59   has done, and actually the David Letterman Barack Obama interview is funny because Obama

00:29:04   himself draws some parallels between them which is, "Hey, we both had jobs for a long

00:29:08   time and we don't have those jobs anymore and now what do we do?"

00:29:11   I guarantee you that that special is what led to this conversation.

00:29:14   I wouldn't, it would not surprise me if they were looking at what Letterman was doing because

00:29:19   he signed his deal for his show for a lot of money.

00:29:22   - I love that Letterman show, by the way.

00:29:24   It's so good.

00:29:26   I wish there were more and more and more.

00:29:28   I love it.

00:29:29   - I love it.

00:29:30   That's good, especially since David Letterman

00:29:31   is not a name in the rest of the world

00:29:35   like he is in America.

00:29:36   I think it's great.

00:29:37   The first episode, okay,

00:29:38   we're gonna take a little sidebar here.

00:29:39   The first episode, I was really disappointed.

00:29:41   We talked about it.

00:29:42   I was really disappointed

00:29:42   in some of the production values of it.

00:29:44   I thought the sound wasn't very good.

00:29:46   I thought the way it was shot was a little bit weird,

00:29:48   but the George Clooney episode and the Malala episode,

00:29:53   both were shot in different venues

00:29:56   and both of them had great audio

00:29:58   and both of them looked really good.

00:29:59   And it's like you're watching a movie of an interview,

00:30:03   which is like the way it's shot

00:30:05   and it's got the interstitial things

00:30:07   where he's out in the world

00:30:08   visiting like George Clooney's family

00:30:10   in his hometown in Kentucky,

00:30:11   or he goes to Oxford with Malala.

00:30:15   - I haven't seen the Malala episode yet.

00:30:17   - Oh yeah, it's really good. - Because the show seems

00:30:18   to be on such a really weird schedule, I just like, catch it when I want to watch something.

00:30:22   - I think it's like the first of the month. Basically it's like a first Friday of the

00:30:26   month is when they're dropping them. - I feel like I don't have a concept of it,

00:30:29   you know? - Yeah, I only noticed the new episode was

00:30:31   out, I mean this is the challenge with Netflix, is they're like, how do we do something that

00:30:34   doesn't drop in a binge, but drops weekly or monthly? They're doing this with the Joel

00:30:38   McHale show is a weekly that is, um, but they want to get into this, right? They want to

00:30:43   have the John Oliver style weekly comedy commentary thing. They've signed a bunch of deals for

00:30:50   that, so Netflix is going to have to figure out how they promote things that don't drop

00:30:55   in a binge and how do they do that. But to back up, I think Obama looked at the Letterman

00:31:02   thing and also Letterman, like the first thing he did when he retired is he did like a National

00:31:06   Geographic documentary about going to India and talking about climate change and talking

00:31:12   about solar power and all sorts of things in India, but it was also sort of his, he

00:31:17   went to India and it s kind of interesting to see him interacting with people in India

00:31:21   and also learning about what s going on in India and he talked to the Prime Minister

00:31:24   and all of that. And I looked at that and thought, you know, I think this is the kind

00:31:29   of thing that Obama might look at and say, That s actually not a bad analog for what

00:31:35   I might want to do and why not do that? So, I think it s a fascinating fact.

00:31:38   And he is young enough and entertaining enough that it could work?

00:31:44   Yeah, that's exactly it. He's a relatively young person, especially for an ex-president,

00:31:50   and he's good at that stuff. He's good at media. Even the people who don't like him

00:31:54   would have to admit he's great at speaking, he's an interesting personality, he's got

00:32:01   that going for him. And Michelle does too, right? She's really great at communicating

00:32:06   and expressing herself and she's a very interesting person and I think just judging them as media

00:32:11   personalities I think it's an interesting it's very interesting so the fact that Amazon

00:32:17   and Apple and Netflix are talking to them like 21st century man all the rules are different

00:32:23   so it's fascinating.

00:32:25   S1 22 Kenneth Lonergan signs a first look deal with

00:32:28   Amazon. Lonergan is the writer and director of the Oscar award-winning Manchester by the

00:32:33   Sea

00:32:34   films production that won an Oscar. Then they put it in theaters and then they showed it

00:32:38   on Amazon but Amazon was the releasing studio for that film.

00:32:42   -Lonnigan also wrote, analyzed this and co-wrote the screenplay of Gangs of New York. What

00:32:49   is a first look deal? -Sounds like they pay him to let Amazon get

00:32:55   the first chance to buy anything he does. -Right, they get right at first refusal then

00:32:59   on any project that Lonnigan's doing. Okay. -Right, so that says we want to be in the

00:33:04   Kenneth Lonergan business but we're not going to agree to buy everything you do. That's

00:33:09   probably what the conversation was. But this is something we're seeing a lot where you've

00:33:14   got Netflix and other companies making deals with creative people. It's not just buying

00:33:19   shows, but like Netflix made their deals with Ryan Murphy and Shonda Rhimes. And you know,

00:33:25   Amazon making a deal with a director, writer. This is all like, let me get good creative

00:33:32   people on our team and and studios do this studios have deals with people and now we're

00:33:38   seeing streaming services make those deals too and that's part of this arms race almost

00:33:43   creative arms race that's happening.

00:33:46   And Jon Favreau is going to executive produce and write a live-action Star Wars series for

00:33:52   Disney's upcoming streaming platform. Does this get you excited?

00:33:55   Um no.

00:33:56   There's too much Star Wars I'm starting to think now.

00:34:01   Well, there was always going to be a live-action Star Wars series, and that was going to happen.

00:34:06   It was inevitable. It's funny. It's never happened before. It's going to be on Disney's

00:34:11   new streaming service. I was talking to somebody about Disney streaming services, and they're

00:34:15   like, "How many are they going to have?" And the answer is, so far as we know, three. They're

00:34:20   going to have Disney streaming service, which is going to have Marvel and Star Wars content

00:34:23   on it, and Disney movies and stuff like that. They're going to have an ESPN service, and

00:34:27   gonna own most of Hulu, which is probably where all of the adult content, the FX shows

00:34:33   and things will live, is my guess. But that's this. Jean-Fevreux, it's interesting. Definitely

00:34:42   heard from a lot of people who are disappointed because it is a, to put it bluntly, it's another

00:34:47   white guy being handed the keys to Star Wars and at a time when I think a lot of people

00:34:52   are hoping that there would be more diversity in the people who are making Star Wars.

00:34:56   Yeah, because it seems like every multi-year future project that Star Wars related has

00:35:03   got a man behind it right now.

00:35:05   A middle-aged white guy, yeah. Well, Rian Johnson's pretty young. So here's the thing.

00:35:12   What's interesting about this to me is that Jon Favreau is, you know, he's got like two

00:35:17   writing credits, substantial writing credits to his name, so they say he's executive producing

00:35:22   and writing. My guess is that this is going to be like Joss Whedon with Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

00:35:27   where Jon Favreau is going to come in and maybe write or co-write and direct the pilot,

00:35:35   but I'm skeptical that he will even be the showrunner. My guess is that he's going to

00:35:40   be more like J.J. Abrams with Lost is a good example. There are other examples of this

00:35:46   where it's like he's gonna be overseeing it to a certain degree, but my guess is that

00:35:52   he's gonna hire a showrunner or showrunners to do this show and do the heavy lifting day-to-day

00:35:58   beyond setting the initial concept. He may be involved in the initial casting and concept

00:36:04   and character development and writing the pilot episode and all of that and building

00:36:08   the writers room and hiring all the writers, but I have a hard time imagining Jon Favreau

00:36:15   saying, "Oh yeah, this is gonna be my job day-to-day, super intense, as a showrunner."

00:36:20   Like, that's a huge job, and he's like a film director/actor with some writing background.

00:36:28   That doesn't seem like a showrunner job. I could be wrong, because that's not--all the

00:36:31   report says is he's gonna write and execute to produce this series. But I don't believe

00:36:37   that he's going to be the showrunner, per se. I think that there will be somebody else

00:36:43   who is in there day to day. And yeah, so I hope that perhaps that is an opportunity for

00:36:50   him to hire some more diverse faces and voices to create some different takes on Star Wars.

00:37:02   Because I think we saw with the success of Black Panther especially that different perspectives

00:37:07   bring different creative work and it's exciting when there's something that feels different

00:37:13   and that is coming from a different perspective and I think that that would be good for Star

00:37:17   Wars but he's a he seems like a very you know solid guy creatively and he's also a company

00:37:21   man which we have to say he directed Jungle Book he is directing the Lion King live-action

00:37:27   movie another reason why I don't believe that he's gonna just become suddenly become a TV

00:37:31   showrunner even for a Star Wars show yeah when like he's he's in a position right now

00:37:36   where they are handing him every single big movie they've ever had. Right, like, do you

00:37:42   want to just do them? You can just do them if you want to.

00:37:45   Yeah, all of these new live-action versions of animated Disney classics that he's done,

00:37:51   and then before that, what did he do? Well, he directed Iron Man 1 and 2, and basically

00:37:57   has-- he could take a lot of credit, not all the credit, Kevin Feige is the guy who's

00:38:03   mind the whole thing, but like he's an integral part of the launching of the Marvel Cinematic

00:38:09   Universe.

00:38:10   Jared: He made superhero movies legit movies.

00:38:12   Chris A many-million dollar business for, as it turns out now, Disney, right? So he

00:38:17   is a company man in those ways, so to have him be involved in this other leg of Disney's

00:38:23   empire is not surprising, but I'm going to apply a little skepticism. I think there's

00:38:28   still opportunity here for some other interesting creative announcements, and I'm hopeful of

00:38:33   that for the live action series because running a TV series is a really tough job and I I

00:38:38   I'm if I I if he ends up being the showrunner and and is going to put the whole thing together

00:38:43   then bless him but I have a hard time seeing that that is that's a weird career choice

00:38:47   for him given his career arc right now.

00:38:50   Today's show is also brought to you in part by our friends over at Squarespace use the

00:38:56   offer code upgrade at checkout and you will get yourself 10% off your first purchase.

00:39:01   Squarespace lets you easily create a website for your next idea. They give you all of the

00:39:04   tools you need so you can make your next move. Whether you want to create an online store,

00:39:09   a portfolio, a blog, a site for your business, a site for your band, a site for an event

00:39:14   that you've got coming up, it doesn't matter what type of website you're looking to make,

00:39:18   Squarespace have got the tools. They have award winning 24/7 customer support if you

00:39:22   need any help with anything, but their platform is so easy to use. There's nothing to install

00:39:27   or patch or upgrade, they take care of all of that stuff for you so you don't have to.

00:39:31   Even just basic stuff like analytics, you don't even need to go to a third party for

00:39:35   that because they've got it all built right in. The templates are really customizable,

00:39:40   you can click around and drag and drop and make the customizations that you want just

00:39:44   to give it that flair of your own. It's all very, very easy to do and once it's done,

00:39:48   it's done and you're ready to publish it out to the world. You can even try it out for

00:39:51   yourself and go and create your own website before you even sign up for a plan. There's

00:39:55   There's a free trial available over at squarespace.com so you can go in and make that website feel

00:40:01   like your own and then sign up for a plan.

00:40:03   They start at just $12 a month and if you use the code UPGRADE you will get 10% off

00:40:08   your first purchase and also show your support for this show and Relay FM.

00:40:12   Squarespace make your next move, make your next website.

00:40:17   So there was every now and then on Twitter there were like these kind of quote tweet

00:40:22   memes that go around kind of just for an evening and they disappear. And one of the ones that

00:40:28   happened yesterday was people naming their top five Apple products of the last five years.

00:40:34   And I thought, what a great topic for a podcast. So here we are. This is not draft rules. We're

00:40:40   not doing a draft. We're going to save the draft because we're probably not that far

00:40:44   away from a draft really. It's either going to be a few months, but we've got to save

00:40:49   them drafts for the heavy hitting. But I saw this flying around and I thought we should

00:40:55   do this. So we'll go from five to one, our personal favorite Apple products of the last

00:41:01   five years. Jason, do you want to go first with pick number five?

00:41:05   Yeah, I and I misunderstood when when this was this was in there the first time and I

00:41:10   didn't realize you were counting down and so I had these in a different order and then

00:41:12   I flipped them and it was that was kind of fascinating because I wasn't even though I

00:41:17   I saw your pics in our shared document, I was trying to ignore them and then it turns

00:41:22   out that was great because I had also misread them. I misread the rankings. So then I had

00:41:26   to flip everything around. So this was going to be my like capper like weird bottom pic

00:41:31   and instead it s going to go first but here it is. I m going to say, get ready for it

00:41:35   people, the MacBook. Yeah, I know people are like, Oh, it s got a weird keyboard. It s

00:41:40   got only one port. It s two pounds. My daughter, I bought when her Chromebook was finally

00:41:46   dying. I bought her a MacBook. A refurb 2017, I think, MacBook. And it's great. It's great.

00:41:57   It's — I admit at $12.99, like, it would be nice if it were cheaper, which is why I

00:42:01   bought a refurb, because I wanted to save a little bit of money. But as somebody who

00:42:07   always loved the MacBook Air, and I like thin and light laptops, I love the MacBook. Now,

00:42:11   I'll grant you, I wish it had two ports. I think it's silly that you can't charge and

00:42:16   plug-in USB on it, but she doesn't care. And she loves it, and I can see why. I like the

00:42:24   screen. The keyboard isn't great, although the new keyboard is better than the original

00:42:30   keyboard, and it's two pounds. And yeah, it's not super duper speedy in terms of the processor,

00:42:37   but for most uses it doesn't matter. And if I were buying a new Mac laptop today, I would

00:42:45   be really torn between the MacBook escape and the MacBook, but I would be leaning toward

00:42:51   the MacBook. And I like that this is Apple saying we can push what we did with the MacBook

00:42:55   Air even further and also have the Retina display. So I want to give Apple credit for

00:42:59   that. I think it's a really fun product. I'm going to go with the Apple Watch Series 3

00:43:06   as my number 5 pick. I wouldn't say that I'm smitten with the Apple Watch. I really like

00:43:14   it as a product, it has a long way to go. For a product that I like as much as this,

00:43:20   I can't think of anything that I can still say it's not good enough. If I think about

00:43:28   the HomePod, I know the HomePod isn't good enough, but I don't have affection for the HomePod in the

00:43:34   same way that I do my Apple Watch. It is a product that I really, really appreciate and it has made a

00:43:39   a big difference to some of the way that I interact and work and use my technology.

00:43:44   But it has a long way to go still.

00:43:47   But I believe in the product's ability going into the future, because what they've done

00:43:51   so far, I've enjoyed a lot and I've gotten a lot of use out of it.

00:43:56   The software has gotten a lot better.

00:43:58   And the inclusion of LTE holds a lot of promise for what I really honestly want to be as a

00:44:04   mini computer on my wrist is ultimately what I want.

00:44:07   And I think the LTE watch has shown me that in a way that no other watch did before. An

00:44:14   Apple watch's ability to be an independent computer is a very interesting and powerful

00:44:19   thing. But the current way that the software and the product is built does not easily enable

00:44:24   or enforce that with developers, even with Apple themselves in some places. So I see

00:44:32   the Series 3 as the first step towards what I think this product could eventually become,

00:44:36   Which I think could be really interesting. I do not ever believe that they will replace

00:44:40   what we consider to be our main devices. Smartphones and smartphone replacements will be a whole

00:44:46   different thing and I don't believe that a wrist computer will do that. But it can be

00:44:51   a very interesting and compelling secondary device and I really really like my Apple Watch

00:44:58   for what it provides me on a daily basis. Which is like notifications, basic tasks,

00:45:03   timers, all that kind of stuff, having a little computer on your body can be really useful.

00:45:08   And it's not there yet, but with Siri and let's say AirPods, a cellular Apple Watch can be not

00:45:19   maybe your primary device, but can do a whole lot potentially more than you might think in terms of

00:45:26   just kind of wandering around and doing stuff. I agree, this is not, I didn't put it on my list

00:45:32   because this is not a list of my,

00:45:36   like the most, Apple products that have made the most impact

00:45:39   on my life in the last five years,

00:45:41   that would be a different list.

00:45:42   And we gave, we talked about this in terms

00:45:44   of the life changing product and the upgrade is last year.

00:45:47   - Yeah, and I think my take on that is gonna become clear

00:45:52   as we go on, I'm kind of in the same boat

00:45:54   that this is the products I think are the best,

00:45:57   not necessarily what's made the best impact on me

00:45:59   because I think that they would be different.

00:46:02   And we can talk about that as we go through it actually.

00:46:04   So do you wanna go with your number four?

00:46:06   - Yeah, it is AirPods, which I mentioned before.

00:46:11   I think this product was maybe the origin

00:46:14   of this entire thing, which is how great the AirPods are.

00:46:19   And some people are like, "Oh, well, the AirPods are great."

00:46:21   But think of all these other amazing products

00:46:23   that Apple has done.

00:46:24   But yeah, AirPods is a quintessential Apple product, right?

00:46:29   It is this amazing thing that you kind of can't believe

00:46:32   exists and it packs so much tech into such a small space.

00:46:36   And I think it, not only do I love them

00:46:39   and I did not expect to love them,

00:46:40   but I think it's in many ways like the perfect example

00:46:45   of what kind of products Apple is best at making.

00:46:48   - So my number four is the iPad Pro 12.9 inch.

00:46:54   And for me, I'm kind of like both of them.

00:46:58   they're in the same here.

00:46:59   I'm not really pulling out a specific model

00:47:02   'cause they both kind of serve the same purpose.

00:47:04   Because honestly, like the iPad Pro 12.9 inch

00:47:07   is probably the Apple product

00:47:09   that's made the biggest significant change in my life

00:47:11   in the last five years.

00:47:12   - Yeah, me too.

00:47:14   - Because it was the product that upended

00:47:18   how I think and use computers.

00:47:20   Like that is wild that it did that.

00:47:24   I was kind of, you know, throughout my history of the iPad,

00:47:27   would go in and out. Sometimes I didn't use them for long periods of time,

00:47:31   sometimes I had like bursts of time where I used them, but from the day the

00:47:35   12.9 inch iPad Pro came out to today, the iPad has been my most consistent computer

00:47:41   device and I think that the 12.9 inch iPad allowed Apple to think about the

00:47:47   iPad differently, it allowed customers to think about the iPad differently as a

00:47:51   device. Whatever it was, going to a basically a 13 inch screen allowed

00:47:56   people to seriously think about an iPad as a device to do work on and I think that the

00:48:02   significance of this product will continue into the future as like this was a turning

00:48:07   point for computing like that that one specific iPad the iPad Pro the big iPad Pro will be

00:48:14   I believe considered a big turning point.

00:48:17   Yeah, it's not the what's funny about it is it's not the product for everyone right? It

00:48:21   not the mainstream product, but it's the one that has the most impact on me personally.

00:48:28   And so even though I just said this isn't a personal list, like, I think it's a big

00:48:31   — I'm going to mention it later, but the thing that ticked it over for me is that I

00:48:38   — even though it's not for everyone and the 10.5 is more for everyone than the 12.9,

00:48:46   what makes me put it on the list is that it's a large iOS device, and I think there are

00:48:50   going to be more. I think that pushing iOS forward into new places, including things

00:48:56   like laptops or desktops, like bigger screens, is the future of iOS. I think that Apple will

00:49:03   go there eventually. And so that's one of the—making an iOS—the first iOS device

00:49:09   to be kind of in the space where a computer belongs is why I put it on my list, too. So

00:49:15   we'll get there.

00:49:16   What's your number three?

00:49:17   - I decided that I was gonna put the iMac Pro on my list.

00:49:24   The one I'm sitting in front of right now.

00:49:26   I, for many reasons, it's a really good computer.

00:49:31   Like, Stephen Hackett and I talk about this now

00:49:34   and I hear Marco talk about it every now and then

00:49:36   and like, I see other people talk about their iMac Pros.

00:49:39   It's like, it's been a little while now.

00:49:41   It's really good.

00:49:42   It's fast.

00:49:43   First off, I love the 5K iMac

00:49:44   and I would have said the 5K iMac were it not for the MacBook Pro or the iMac Pro.

00:49:48   Um, because I love that.

00:49:51   I love the screen and it's a great machine to work on.

00:49:55   And then the iMac Pro does all of that and has this incredible power that

00:50:00   even the powerful 5K iMac didn't have.

00:50:02   And I know it's, it's pricey, but it's a heck of a computer.

00:50:06   And it also represents Apple paying attention to pro level needs and pro

00:50:14   level hardware, which hopefully is a beginning of this kind of Renaissance that will continue

00:50:19   with the Mac Pro. And I wanted to make sure that I had some Macs on my list. So that's

00:50:24   another reason that I put it here, but I love it. I keep loving it more the more I use it.

00:50:30   It's funny, you have that buyer's remorse moment where you spend $5,000 in computer

00:50:35   and think, "Should I have done that?" And I don't have that anymore at all. Like that

00:50:41   evaporated quickly and has not returned because it's pretty great.

00:50:45   I had to really spend some time thinking about my number five, whether it was going to be

00:50:49   the Apple Watch or the 5K iMac.

00:50:54   Which would have been a great pick.

00:50:55   And the 5K iMac is awesome. I love my iMac.

00:50:58   It is.

00:50:59   But a product that I choose to put on every day and that many people choose to put on

00:51:03   their bodies every day, I don't know, it kind of felt like it just maybe a bit more different

00:51:08   to me.

00:51:09   That's fair.

00:51:10   the last five years the Apple watch was a brand new product category whilst the 5k iMac was a

00:51:16   very good advancement of an existing thing so that was why I kind of considered it maybe to be a

00:51:22   little bit more important in the grand scheme but I will you know whilst I've never used an iMac Pro

00:51:27   and probably I don't expect will I can definitely say that like the iMac line that ended up leading

00:51:33   to the iMac Pro is a just a fantastic computer more computer than I need which is it's already

00:51:39   saying something considering there's something even more powerful out there.

00:51:44   I'm going to go with AirPods for my number three.

00:51:46   There you go.

00:51:47   Purely because they are, you know when people say like you said it right, they are like

00:51:52   this this quintessential Apple product and for me it is the of course factor when you

00:51:57   use them.

00:51:58   It's like of course, of course this is what headphones should be.

00:52:03   Of course like they are independent little things that you keep in a tiny case so they

00:52:07   They stay away from lint or whatever in your pocket and they don't get tangled up.

00:52:13   You don't have to spend five minutes untangling the cord before you start listening to your

00:52:16   music and all you do is just pop them in your ears and most of the time, depending on how

00:52:22   you use them and how many devices, it's just ready to go immediately.

00:52:25   Or like, okay, you're playing something on your iPhone through the speaker whilst you're

00:52:28   getting ready to leave the house.

00:52:30   You put your AirPods in and then the audio transfers over onto your AirPods and you just

00:52:35   put your phone in your pocket.

00:52:36   There are so many of course moments with the AirPods, like for example, that the battery

00:52:42   basically never dies because you charge them pretty infrequently.

00:52:46   I mean I've never had a battery die on mine, because it just never gets to that point.

00:52:52   Like at some point between those two charges, I've just decided to plug it in again for

00:52:56   no particular reason really because the battery lasts a really long time on these things.

00:53:02   It is a great product and I think will only continue to get better especially when the

00:53:06   case gets Qi charging because you then like all you do is just put it down.

00:53:10   You never even have to think about plugging a lightning cable in anymore, right?

00:53:13   Like they become even more of course as time goes on and as a 1.0 product there is very

00:53:21   little wrong with them.

00:53:22   Like really there's kind of nothing wrong.

00:53:26   I mean, I have one thing that I want, which is like more fine gesture control, but that's

00:53:32   it, right? Like they are an incredibly good 1.0 in a quintessentially Apple style. The

00:53:39   AirPods are a fantastic product. And if you're skeptical of them, I recommend if you have

00:53:45   the means to just give them a try because I think they make fans of users very quickly.

00:53:51   Yeah, and I was not expecting to like them as much as I do because I'm finicky about

00:53:58   headphones and they're great. They're great.

00:54:00   What is your number two?

00:54:02   My number two is the iPad Pro 12.9, which we already talked about, so we don't need

00:54:07   to talk about it again, but it has dramatically changed how I work and I like how it points

00:54:11   to the future for what's possible with iOS. Do you have an iPad Pro you'd like to talk

00:54:15   about now, Myke?

00:54:16   Yeah the 10.5 inch. It is not the iPad Pro that I use every day, it is the iPad Pro I

00:54:21   use when I travel. But the 10.5 inch iPad Pro is the closest thing to a perfect iPad

00:54:26   that Apple have ever made. Because the 12.9 is great for people that are sitting and using

00:54:32   their devices all day every day. But the 10.5 gets close enough in so many areas. You know

00:54:38   like it is a just good big enough screen and the screen is fantastic. And it's thin and

00:54:46   light and very portable and very powerful. It is so much better than the 9.7" iPads

00:54:55   and not that much worse than the 12.9". I really think of it as like, this is the best

00:55:03   iPad and I think that it makes fans of lots of people and the 10.5 still sits in the place

00:55:10   of entertainment and people that want to do a little bit of work and stuff on their iPads

00:55:16   because the 12.9 is difficult to deal with at times because it is a big thing and it's

00:55:23   heavy for a mobile computing device. So the 10.5 is basically nothing. When you pick it

00:55:32   up, you can, you know.

00:55:33   My wife has the 10.5 and every now and then I pick it up. I pick it up to move it somewhere

00:55:38   or whatever and it's so light. It's gotten to the point now where I pick it up and I

00:55:43   I think maybe next time I should really consider the 10.5 because it's got all the power of

00:55:48   the 12.9 and just the smaller screen and maybe it would be enough for me. Do I really use

00:55:52   the screen in split screen with a bunch of apps moving around enough to make it worth

00:55:58   the weight of the 12.9? And the answer is probably yes, but every time I pick it up

00:56:03   I think about it.

00:56:06   It is an absolutely wonderful machine. And I think we go into our number one and it's

00:56:10   pretty obvious where we're gonna go because neither of us have spoken about an iPhone

00:56:15   yet, right? So I feel like you've got, you know, the iPhone is the product and what is

00:56:20   the best iPhone of the last five years? The most recent one, right? It's probably the

00:56:25   way that it tends to go with this stuff. And we're both going with the iPhone X for what

00:56:31   we consider to be the best product that Apple's made in the last five years. And I'm intrigued,

00:56:35   Jason, to understand why you feel that way.

00:56:37   Well, I mean, a lot of what I said for the AirPods actually goes for the iPhone X. It's

00:56:43   got a bunch of new tech in it. The new tech in it, we all lifted our eyebrows and said,

00:56:47   "Is it really going to work?" And it really works. Like, it really works. Face ID works.

00:56:55   The OLED screen is beautiful. As a non-Plus user, the dual cameras on the back and the

00:57:01   quality of that camera is spectacular, the front-facing camera is good. I love it. I

00:57:09   think it's great. It is my favorite iPhone. It's so good. And the fact that we all kind

00:57:14   of looked at the possibilities and the specs and were like, "Wow, this is a really weird

00:57:18   decision on their part to do this and bifurcate the line," and all of the things that they

00:57:22   did, and they nailed it. And I like to see that kind of execution from Apple that says

00:57:29   something when they took their most important product and really challenged

00:57:33   themselves in terms of the technology and they stuck the landing.

00:57:36   I consider technology impressive when multiple months after using it every

00:57:42   single day there are still times where I pick it up and I'm like wow look at you

00:57:46   and I still get that with the iPhone 10 you know I'm just like look at this

00:57:52   thing like it is beautiful and it does wonderful things and smart things and it

00:57:57   it has technology that I couldn't have expected. It is just a superb Apple-y design thing.

00:58:06   They really have made the best possible iPhone in a way that I'm so intrigued to see what

00:58:13   comes next from it. Because this was such a big jump based upon what iPhones have been

00:58:17   previously and there's a lot of technology in here which is Apple's first attempt at

00:58:22   doing it and I'm really really intrigued to see what this year's iPhone lineup looks like

00:58:27   I've been thinking a lot about what a bigger iPhone X could be and I'm very very intrigued

00:58:35   and excited about the prospect of an even bigger version of this which I know is a me

00:58:41   thing and it's not a you thing and I get that but the idea of what is version 2 of this

00:58:47   even I'm really really intrigued to see what the iPhone 11 or whatever it's going to be

00:58:53   ends up looking like.

00:58:56   So we've been, like this list is really heavy on iOS devices from both of us, you know,

00:59:00   all things in the iOS ecosystem.

00:59:03   I don't know, I mean I've got two Macs, a desktop and a laptop, I've got an iPhone and

00:59:07   an iPad, and then I've got an accessory.

00:59:10   I feel pretty good about the spread of mine.

00:59:12   Fair enough.

00:59:13   And you, I'm not surprised for you that it tilts toward iOS, that makes sense.

00:59:17   And also, you know, my thinking is that's where the majority of Apple's product focus

00:59:21   has been, right?

00:59:22   Like, that's kind of where that goes to.

00:59:25   So if that's where they're put in most of their efforts, it's probably where a lot of

00:59:29   the most exciting stuff is going to be.

00:59:31   So yeah, that was a fun exercise.

00:59:32   I'm keen to know from our Upgradients what they think of our lists and what their lists

00:59:37   are as well.

00:59:38   You can send them to us over Twitter and be interested to see what people think.

00:59:43   Today's show is brought to you by Eero.

00:59:45   Never think about Wi-Fi again because Eero have created the dream Wi-Fi setup.

00:59:50   It is a fast, reliable connection throughout your home, even out to the backyard.

00:59:55   And now it's time to get on board with Eero because they have some great products available.

01:00:00   Their second gen system includes a tri-band radio system.

01:00:05   So along with their Eero Beacon, you can build a wifi system that can be perfectly tailored

01:00:10   to your home.

01:00:11   It's really customizable.

01:00:12   The new Eero model includes a third 5GHz radio, so it's twice as fast as ever before.

01:00:18   No matter what your WiFi needs, Eero has the power to blanket your home in reliable WiFi

01:00:23   connections.

01:00:24   There you have a Thread Radio which will allow you to connect to low power devices, some

01:00:28   smart home stuff such as locks, doorbells and more just from the Eero device.

01:00:33   And the Eero Beacon is what allows you to stretch your WiFi connection throughout the

01:00:38   home.

01:00:39   So you have the one Eero main device and then you take the beacons and the beacons can be

01:00:43   just plug straight into the wall and they will expand the coverage throughout your home.

01:00:49   You can have as many Eero beacons as you want so long as you have the one main device and

01:00:53   they even include a built in LED nightlight with ambient light sensor. The Eero app lets

01:01:00   you manage your network from the palm of your hand and you can also easily create and share

01:01:04   a guest network too. I'm wondering Jason, do you use the Eero app? I know that you have

01:01:09   aero devices at home and I wonder kind of what information you get from it.

01:01:13   I mostly just use it to do administrative stuff like do the software updates or do a

01:01:19   restart on the network. I had to do that because I had weird things happening with my cable

01:01:23   modem so I restarted, I unplugged my router and I restarted all the aero's and all of

01:01:29   that and you can do that from inside the app.

01:01:32   I like the idea of not having to get up and go and flick some switches to restart the

01:01:36   the Hero, right? Because like, I don't have any Hero here because I'm in the UK and they're

01:01:40   in the US and Canada right now. And if I have a problem, I have to like leave the office

01:01:44   and like go and track the thing down and turn it off and wait for the lights to come on.

01:01:49   That's not good. I want to do it from an app instead. The Hero system starts at $399 for

01:01:54   a second gen Hero and two beacons, which should be everything that you need to get started.

01:01:59   But the Hero system is flexible and you can expand and contract as you need to. Listeners

01:02:02   of this show can get free overnight shipping to the US or Canada when you go to Eero.com

01:02:07   that is Eero.com and use the promo code upgrade that is Eero.com with the promo code upgrade

01:02:14   for free overnight shipping. Our thanks to Eero for their support of this show. So it's

01:02:20   already started in the chat room and I've just realized like how many questions we're

01:02:24   going to get about like why not this one. So I want to just address the first one. Pura

01:02:30   for

01:02:46   think about the iPad Pro, I personally think about with the smart keyboard and

01:02:51   the Apple pencil but I don't want to dictate that on top of people. But for me

01:02:55   the iPad Pro is all three of those things together as like a system. So

01:03:00   that's kind of my thought on that but I didn't want to prescribe that to

01:03:04   everybody. Should we do some Ask Upgrades, Jason? Let's do it! Our first question

01:03:09   comes from Francois. Francois says "I'm stumped. How can I save files locally to

01:03:15   the files app without having a third party document provider installed. Surely this should

01:03:21   be possible. I think you can from the share sheet you can save to your iPad and you can

01:03:29   also save to iCloud and I know that iCloud this frustrates me because you should have

01:03:36   more access to on my iPad I think is what they call it or on my iPhone in files because

01:03:42   that the difference there is what you're saying is save this in a place that I can get to

01:03:47   it but don't sync it over the internet. I don't need this in iCloud, I just need it

01:03:52   saved on my device for later. Some apps are better than others at doing that, but you

01:03:57   can also save it to iCloud and iCloud Drive is also your local file system.

01:04:04   David Pembroke You can save locally to the iPad if the application

01:04:07   that you're using has a container folder that it sets up, but not all apps do this. Some

01:04:12   Some apps will do this in iCloud drive or some apps just won't do this at all.

01:04:17   But obviously I don't know what your connection situation is like and maybe you're tethering

01:04:23   or whatever so don't want things syncing.

01:04:25   But if you do have no problem about that, my advice is to basically just think of iCloud

01:04:30   as the local file system and just save everything there.

01:04:33   That's what I do.

01:04:34   If I have something I don't need to go into Dropbox, like I'm just maybe taking something

01:04:39   and doing something to it and sending it somewhere else, I just save it into iCloud Drive as

01:04:43   basically the local file system.

01:04:45   But yeah, it would be great if you could save things directly to the iPad itself without

01:04:50   needing to have these container folders.

01:04:52   Let me set up my own file structure in there which you cannot do right now.

01:04:56   James wants to know, "Why wouldn't or hasn't Apple bought a cellular network like Verizon

01:05:02   or AT&T?

01:05:04   Surely there'd be many benefits for iPhone buyers and it seems characteristic of Tim

01:05:08   Cook's Apple. Jason, what are the problems with Apple maybe trying to buy a cellular

01:05:13   network that may have stopped them from doing that so far?

01:05:16   I mean, number one is that it closes them off from presumably from all the other cellular

01:05:22   networks who they're now competing with.

01:05:23   Yep.

01:05:24   And the also it would be in the it would be a US only play. Are they going to do this

01:05:30   in other countries too? Can they can they run a cellular network better than the existing

01:05:35   maybe? Is that in their core competency? Probably not. I think Apple likes having-- I get what this is about, it's what you can control, but I think Apple in this case likes the fact that it's got multiple players. I think if there was one dominant cellular carrier and they were putting the squeeze on Apple and Apple felt like that carrier was or could potentially

01:06:04   actually threaten Apple's business. I think they might behave differently, but as it is,

01:06:11   you know, there's competition to a certain degree in the US in terms of the providers,

01:06:17   and that works for Apple. That works in Apple's favor because they all want Apple stuff and

01:06:21   they're all going to play ball with Apple because they all, you know, nobody wants to

01:06:24   be the carrier that doesn't have the iPhone. It's very popular and Apple's customers are

01:06:29   people with money and are willing to pay for data and use a lot of data and all of these

01:06:34   are reasons. So I think they don't need to buy anything.

01:06:37   I don't think Apple has anything but great relationships with these phone networks.

01:06:42   I think yes, I think it's a mutually beneficial partnership, right? Like Apple customers are

01:06:49   great customers for these companies. And that means that Apple gets to do what it wants

01:06:55   to do. We're never going back to the days where they've got to put junk on phones and

01:07:00   put silk screens of the carrier label on the back of the phone or the front of the phone.

01:07:06   Apple's never going to have to do any of that stuff. They broke that. Everybody wants Apple

01:07:12   and Apple benefits from that and I think it's going to be fine. I don't see any benefit

01:07:17   in getting in the mire there. Plus, even if they did that and even if it got approved

01:07:22   by regulators, that would be for the US, then what do they do for the rest of the world?

01:07:25   So I just don't, I don't think it's necessary. And it's way too complicated.

01:07:29   And you jumped over a point that I think is super important. I don't think any regulatory

01:07:32   body in the world would permit this sale. Like, probably no one, no one is going to

01:07:37   let Apple restrict the market like that lobbying groups for the other cell carriers would just

01:07:44   have would go wild, they're going to overdrive. Theo has a question which is good relate to

01:07:49   to our iPad topic from earlier on when we were talking about the differences between

01:07:52   the 10.5 and 12.9. How do you feel about multitasking in split view compared to the 10.5 inch iPad

01:07:59   Pro vs the 12.9? Doesn't the 12.9 inch have two full iPad apps and the 10.5 have two iPhone

01:08:06   apps? Okay so there's a bit of a yes and no in this. The 10.5 inch has two apps side by

01:08:14   by side which sometimes look like iPhone apps, it depends on how the app has been developed,

01:08:19   depending on what view sizes it has, what are they called, the screen size things, compact

01:08:25   mode and stuff like that, I don't remember the actual term from the top of my head, but

01:08:30   the size classes, that's the one. So there are a bunch of different size classes and

01:08:34   sometimes you get something that's smaller than others but honestly, in using both of

01:08:39   them. After a little while, it actually kind of doesn't really matter that much because

01:08:44   two iPhone apps side by side in a lot of cases is perfectly fine, even if that's what it

01:08:49   is. It works really well. I've worked for very long stretches, like an entire month

01:08:54   where I moved from the 12.9 to the 10.5 when I was in America last year. You get used to

01:09:01   it really quickly because it still works very, very well.

01:09:03   And the most common use case I have on the 12.9 is to have a second app open. I mean,

01:09:09   the most common use is that I don't use multitasking. Like that's the most commonly I'm still not

01:09:13   using it all the time. When I do use it, my most common use case is to have an app in

01:09:18   the narrow view on the side, not to split side by side.

01:09:22   >> It's like the third and two thirds or something.

01:09:25   >> Yeah, yeah. It's like a little sidekick buddy app that is living over there. And so,

01:09:31   you know, it's an iPhone app at that point. And the other one still has lots of space,

01:09:35   is really nice. And on the modern, you know, iPad Pros, the latest generation, you can

01:09:39   also have a slide over app that runs and it's great, right? Like you slide over some too.

01:09:44   But mostly it's that two thirds, one third or whatever. And, uh, and so yeah, one of

01:09:49   them is already in kind of like mini view mode and that's okay. It's, it's fine. Like

01:09:53   I think you give something up, um, for sure, but I think it's fair to say that maybe it's,

01:09:59   it shouldn't be overstated. You do give something up, but it's not like the multitasking goes

01:10:03   from great to garbage when you go from 12 9 to 10 5 because that's not true.

01:10:08   You still get the ability to have three apps on screen.

01:10:11   That would be one thing.

01:10:12   Exactly.

01:10:13   They take away one.

01:10:14   But no, it isn't that.

01:10:15   There are trade-offs, but there are trade-offs on both sides.

01:10:18   You still get very competent multitasking in a much smaller device.

01:10:24   There are benefits.

01:10:26   Bozi asks, "Does an SSD have any significant benefits to a non-power user over a fusion

01:10:32   drive?

01:10:33   plan to follow Jason's previous advice about maximizing the RAM in my future Retina 5K

01:10:38   iMac, but I haven't yet decided on the internal drive.

01:10:43   You know, Fusion Drive, first off, the big question is, Fusion Drive or not? And the

01:10:48   answer is yes. Yes, get the Fusion Drive, because SSDs are so much faster than spinning

01:10:55   disks and the Fusion Drive, that's the whole premise of it, is how do we make something

01:10:58   that's not as expensive as a pure SSD, but still lets the files you use most of the time

01:11:05   move quickly because they're kind of cached on the SSD rather than living on the spinning

01:11:13   disk. So that's the first thing. For a regular user, Fusion Drive might be enough, although

01:11:19   I have not used a Fusion Drive system enough to have explored, like, when it breaks down,

01:11:27   when you suddenly are like, "Oh boy, this is slow," because it's a big file or whatever

01:11:32   and it's not on the SSD portion, it's on the spinning disk portion. Ideally, you would

01:11:41   always feel like you're using an SSD, and then in the background stuff's getting moved

01:11:44   back and forth across the devices. The real significant benefit is that SSDs aren't going

01:11:54   to die like Fusion Drives, which is not to say that SSDs don't have a lifespan, but spinning

01:12:01   disks crash, spinning disks break. They are a fundamentally unreliable technology and

01:12:06   you might skate away for one year or two years or four years or five years, but it will die,

01:12:12   guaranteed. And SSDs don't really, certainly not in the way that spinning disks do. And

01:12:21   for me, I'm going to prioritize SSD because it's a hundred percent speed, not speed except

01:12:29   when the fusion drive software system lets you down and the reliability issue is there.

01:12:35   But you know fusion drive that's the nice thing about fusion drive existing is Apple is trying to

01:12:39   make the speed of SSD more affordable for people who don't want to spend on the pure SSD.

01:12:43   And Michael asked if you've never owned a smartwatch would you buy an Apple watch series

01:12:50   3 today or wait until the next release? And I'm assuming Michael is asking for us to make

01:12:55   make a recommendation for them about that. So what do you think, Jason?

01:13:02   I don't have a good answer here. I mean, I guess if the question is, "Should I wait because

01:13:11   the next watch is going to be totally different?" I have a hard time believing that if Apple

01:13:16   does a major revision to the software that it's not going to run on the Series 3, right?

01:13:21   Like that's not going to happen. It's possible that Apple will redesign the hardware and

01:13:25   that the bands might not be compatible, that might happen at some point, and that would

01:13:28   be sad if they come up with a totally new-looking Apple Watch in the fall and you're on the

01:13:32   older model. But I think the older models are good, they're solid, and that the most

01:13:37   of the progression that needs to happen on that platform is the OS and enabling third-party

01:13:43   apps too. It's not the hardware. We've said it before, the hardware is great. The software

01:13:47   needs work. So I don't think waiting is gonna buy you much. I mean it'll buy you

01:13:54   something because there's always a new model with new stuff in it but like the

01:13:58   place where you're going to see the biggest improvement is on the

01:14:01   software side I think. So it comes down to a personal decision which is can you

01:14:06   wait?

01:14:07   Can you bear to wait? Because there will almost certainly be a new Apple Watch

01:14:10   this fall and if you can wait, you've waited this long,

01:14:13   Can you wait further? If you can, you can get the latest and greatest for probably

01:14:17   the same price that you pay for the Apple Watch Series 3 right now. Or if you

01:14:23   really, really want it and you've waited long enough, then go ahead and buy it

01:14:26   because I think that it's going to serve you well and you will, you know, you will

01:14:30   have been... you will get that thing that you wanted. So I could go either way.

01:14:35   Really, not to be wishy-washy about it, but I do think it comes down to that. That

01:14:40   it really is like can you wait or not because I don't think you will be, I'm not waving

01:14:45   you off from buying an Apple Watch today. Like I think it would be fine if you bought

01:14:49   one today. But if you can wait because you've waited this long then you know there will

01:14:55   be another Apple Watch.

01:14:57   All right if you want to send in a question for us to answer at the end of the show you

01:15:02   can send in a tweet with the hashtag #AskUpgrade and they get collected into a document so

01:15:06   you can have your questions answered by me and Jason at the end of every episode.

01:15:11   I want to thank everyone that has sent in submissions for Ask Upgrade and Snail Talk.

01:15:16   We love those submissions every single week.

01:15:19   Our thanks again to Eero, Squarespace and Freshbooks for supporting the show.

01:15:24   If you want to find Jason online, you can go to SixColors.com.

01:15:28   He is @JSNEL on Twitter and Jason hosts a selection of shows at TheIncomparable.com

01:15:33   and here at Relay.fm.

01:15:35   me I host many shows at Relay FM and you can find them at relay.fm/shows

01:15:40   I am @imike_I-M-Y-K-E on Twitter and we'll be back next week with another

01:15:46   episode of Upgrade. Until then, say goodbye Jason Snow.

01:15:51   Show over man, show over!

01:15:55   [ Music ]