269: Read My Email Through My Eyes


00:00:00   (upbeat music)

00:00:02   Hello and welcome to Connected, episode 269.

00:00:12   It is made possible by our sponsors,

00:00:14   Pingdom, Ahrefs, and Eero.

00:00:16   I'm your host, Steven Hackett,

00:00:17   and I am joined by Myke Hurley.

00:00:20   - Nice.

00:00:21   - Hey buddy.

00:00:21   - Hi.

00:00:22   - You ruined the joke, I was about to say that.

00:00:25   (laughing)

00:00:27   - I get it, this time it's my joke.

00:00:29   Hey guys, this is how it's gonna be today huh? Okay, p***. Don't you know that's offensive? You can't say that. I have to edit that out. Just call him dead. I'm rolling all of my topical references out in the first five minutes today. I think I'm gonna bleep that. Yeah. If you do, it's like "what did he say to me?"

00:00:56   I'm still waiting for my introduction, Steven. That's very rude of you.

00:00:59   Oh, yes. Also, Federico's here. Hey, buddy.

00:01:01   Hi. Thank you. How are you?

00:01:02   I feel like if one of you speaks before I introduce you,

00:01:05   I don't feel obligated to introduce you because people know you're here, right? Like...

00:01:08   But what if people have never heard the show before?

00:01:12   That's a good point.

00:01:12   They're just like, "Oh, there's an Italian here as well. I wonder what they're doing."

00:01:15   Yeah.

00:01:16   Yeah, it just sounded like a rando on the show.

00:01:18   I'm recording with the window open.

00:01:22   Hi, my name is Stephen. The British one is Myke, the Italian one is Puerto Rico. We talk about

00:01:27   computers on the show. Welcome. Thank you. There. Everyone is up to speed. We start the show with

00:01:33   follow up. Last week I asked listeners to chime in. Which is a thing we invented. Yes.

00:01:37   And I had asked listeners to tell us about Apple TV Plus on non-Apple TV hardware because it's

00:01:48   that's available on a bunch of other things.

00:01:51   Both Jonathan and Leon wrote in to say

00:01:53   that they are watching it on Roku TVs,

00:01:57   and I think Leon had a Roku streaming stick,

00:02:00   and it seems to work pretty well.

00:02:04   - What's a Roku?

00:02:05   - It's like a, yeah.

00:02:06   - What's a Roku?

00:02:07   - It's like a--

00:02:08   - It's like a little streaming box.

00:02:08   - Right.

00:02:09   - Yeah, I heard this, and I have an Amazon Fire TV stick,

00:02:13   and I tried to get it to work and kind of gave up.

00:02:18   I plugged it into the TV and it didn't work and it needed power and I didn't have a cable.

00:02:23   So I kind of gave up because luckily we had some follow up.

00:02:26   Because I was listening, I listen to the show and I'm not on it.

00:02:30   But luckily our listeners tried it out for us.

00:02:33   It's like, it all depends on what the software is like, kind of just in general on these

00:02:38   devices.

00:02:39   And a lot of people say that it's superior on stuff with different remotes, right?

00:02:44   like you get to use clicky remotes rather than Apple's remote.

00:02:47   Right.

00:02:48   But they work.

00:02:49   Yeah, it seems like it's fine.

00:02:51   Some people had complained about some like scrubbing being a little weird, but I think

00:02:56   that's more on the device side than the Apple TV plus side.

00:03:00   I can give you one weird esoteric thing that I came across.

00:03:03   Okay.

00:03:04   You know when you watch the TV shows on your Apple TV and it has the little startup chime,

00:03:10   Apple logo Apple TV plus start-up chime right thing that like their network stinger when you watch these on the web that

00:03:16   It doesn't happen. Hmm

00:03:19   and the reason I know this is I was trying to get the audio I

00:03:22   Wanted the sound and I was using audio hijack, right?

00:03:27   So I was like, oh just record them from Chrome, but it wouldn't play in a I would like watch it on my Apple TV

00:03:32   It's like aha right the chime is at like 10 seconds into this episode press play

00:03:36   It just wasn't there. So I ended up having to like plug my iPad into my USB pre

00:03:41   It's like a whole thing, but you joke that nobody got but you have you have the sound effect now

00:03:46   I have it now. Yeah, do you want it? Yes, I will play it at some point in the segment

00:03:50   As you were speaking I was going to the Apple TV website in Safari and then you said it doesn't play on the web

00:03:58   I just closed the tab

00:04:01   Teamwork! But I got it for you, I got it for you. We spent a lot of time last week with my wife

00:04:07   talking about audio and the wide range of Apple and Beats headphones you can buy and we reviewed

00:04:14   our audio predictions. Even though Myke wasn't here we felt like it was the right time to do it

00:04:19   and as we'll remember Myke you actually won. You were ahead of me in Federico. So what's my prize?

00:04:26   Well you got a week off so.

00:04:28   Well okay.

00:04:29   There you go.

00:04:30   Outroactively.

00:04:31   Do I get another week off?

00:04:33   No.

00:04:34   I did also want to press and follow up that my wife and I decided to return our AirPods

00:04:39   Pro.

00:04:40   She's staying with the Powerbeats Pro, Powerprobeats and I'm with the old AirPods and all is well.

00:04:48   And I got my $257 back which is always nice.

00:04:52   Wait $257?

00:04:54   whatever it was, I don't know, let me look at my receipt.

00:04:56   We have tax-- - Like 250?

00:04:59   Oh.

00:04:59   - Oh, with tax, $272.

00:05:02   - Nice.

00:05:03   - So, we got that going for me.

00:05:06   So if anybody wants to borrow $272, I got your back.

00:05:09   (laughing)

00:05:11   - That wasn't the right end.

00:05:13   Claims it.

00:05:14   Apple cash, baby.

00:05:15   (laughing)

00:05:17   - We'll do like a reverse Kickstarter, you know,

00:05:18   like people don't give me money for an idea,

00:05:21   people pitch their ideas and I give them money.

00:05:23   What would you call that?

00:05:24   No wait, that is a Kickstarter.

00:05:25   It's like capitalism, but it's like an adventure.

00:05:27   What could that be called?

00:05:29   I don't know.

00:05:30   A capitalist adventure.

00:05:32   I think that's right.

00:05:33   Myke, you are the resident popsocket enthusiast?

00:05:36   Yep.

00:05:37   Would you call yourself an enthusiast?

00:05:41   I am actually an enthusiast of popsockets.

00:05:43   I have a very nice popsocket at the moment, which is an enamel popsocket.

00:05:49   And it looks like space.

00:05:51   Tell us about this new iPhone case that popped up on Apple's website.

00:05:56   I saw this in our show notes and thought that I had been into some kind of fugue state because

00:06:02   it definitely feels like something I would have put in the show notes, but I didn't.

00:06:07   So PopBox, oh my, PopSocket and OtterBox, two companies, make separate products.

00:06:14   OtterSocket.

00:06:15   OtterSocket.

00:06:16   Ooh, I don't like that.

00:06:19   They teamed up a few years ago and they make a range of different products which integrates

00:06:25   popsockets into autobox cases.

00:06:28   They have some that are incredibly ugly and rugged, some that are a little more svelte,

00:06:32   but they have a new line that seems to be available only at Apple stores in a bunch

00:06:36   of funky colors.

00:06:37   They have like a pink and orange, a black which is not funky, and then a blue which

00:06:41   is definitely purple.

00:06:43   It's like a pretty nice looking case that integrates a popsocket into it.

00:06:48   I've been eyeing this case a little bit because I think the colors are cool.

00:06:52   Now, all of these cases that auto box and pop socket make together seem to suggest,

00:06:58   oh, wireless charging might work, but you might have to remove the pop socket,

00:07:02   which is kind of kind of pointless.

00:07:04   But these are now a product that Apple is selling directly.

00:07:07   I think it's a pretty cool combo.

00:07:09   I'm still a big fan of my pop socket.

00:07:12   And so this could be another option for you,

00:07:14   especially an option for friend of the show Alex Cox, because I know that they love purple cases

00:07:20   and this is very clearly a purple case, not a blue case. And they love pop sockets as much as I do,

00:07:25   so Alex, if you're out there, I think this could be a product for you. Alex also loves orange,

00:07:31   even though the orange is definitely not orange. None of these colors, pink, orange, purple,

00:07:37   are blue. None of them are correct. All these are wrong. No wrong. You've got like, salmon is

00:07:42   orange. I guess the pink is kind of like a lilac color. It's not really that pink. And

00:07:47   then the blue is purple. This is nonsense.

00:07:49   It's like, I'm clicking to change the colors and it's like, what am I looking at?

00:07:55   It's like a complete crapshoot. Like it could be anything. Is this like a Rorschach test

00:08:00   of some description? Like you see whatever color you want to see? This is nightmarish.

00:08:06   I also have a question about this. So in the show notes is the search result page because

00:08:11   'cause there's three different cases in this lineup.

00:08:13   And underneath the results, there's two buttons.

00:08:16   There's Search iTunes, just with the old iTunes logo.

00:08:20   - Everyone knows that.

00:08:22   - And if you click it on Catalina, it opens the music app.

00:08:26   And then there is Search Trailers,

00:08:29   which goes to the Apple trailer website,

00:08:31   which I have forgotten existed.

00:08:34   And if you load it,

00:08:35   we'll put a link directly to it in our show notes,

00:08:37   it looks like Apple's forgotten that it exists too,

00:08:39   because it is in like the old iTunes 8 or 9 UI.

00:08:44   Remember when iTunes looked like this

00:08:45   with like dark gray and graphite color and stuff?

00:08:48   - I love the logo, it's got kind of a shine on it.

00:08:51   - Yeah.

00:08:52   - You know, at the very top.

00:08:53   - But the trailers are actually new.

00:08:57   - Yeah.

00:08:58   - Like the trailers are up to date.

00:09:01   - 'Cause I guess these are being used in the iTunes,

00:09:05   or just the Apple movies store,

00:09:06   whatever it's called now, right?

00:09:08   The iTunes Movie Trailers app, it's still around,

00:09:11   the iOS app, and it got updated, yeah, two years ago.

00:09:15   Oh, well.

00:09:17   - Also, a bunch of these images are not retina,

00:09:21   and if you scroll to the bottom,

00:09:23   comment, suggestion, or have a film trailer,

00:09:24   question mark, email, trailers@mac.com.

00:09:28   - Wow, should we send an email?

00:09:30   Should we send an email?

00:09:31   - Here's the thing, they are still working on this,

00:09:34   because there is an Apple TV+ banner

00:09:36   on the top right-hand corner.

00:09:37   Somebody updated that. Somebody put that in there.

00:09:40   Somebody just put it there.

00:09:42   Someone put that there.

00:09:44   Steven, I know that this is not Adapt,

00:09:46   but I have a challenge for you, Steven, for next week.

00:09:50   So I want you to find--

00:09:54   now that I see this page, I want you

00:09:56   to find the most hidden or old page

00:10:02   that you can find on apple.com.

00:10:06   So in the style of this forgotten iTunes movie trailer website, I want you to find

00:10:12   something else that is just as hidden or not looked after anymore like this.

00:10:19   And it has to be somewhat funny.

00:10:21   Okay.

00:10:22   I thought that you were going to suggest that he sends an email to whoever runs trailers

00:10:26   at Mac.com.

00:10:27   Oh, I am.

00:10:28   I have an email draft right now.

00:10:29   Found your webpage today.

00:10:30   It's super cool.

00:10:31   Love it.

00:10:32   Love, Steven.

00:10:33   Do you want to hear the email?

00:10:34   I love your web.

00:10:35   I love your webpage

00:10:37   What about this?

00:10:39   I just came across this page and it brought me real joy in remembering watching trailers and QuickTime back when I was in school

00:10:45   It's actually pretty sweet lots of love

00:10:49   That is true. I remember that. Oh my damn stay strong. We believe in you

00:10:55   Send the piece and attach a photo attach a photo of you in middle school though

00:10:59   Like you got a cell I have a picture of me in college posing with my power book. I should say that

00:11:05   Yes

00:11:07   Somebody's gonna you know that single person who's in charge of that email address is gonna send it to Tim Cook or Eddie Q

00:11:12   Maybe Eddie Q is gonna see it. You know, what if I wrote it as if

00:11:15   Maybe that write it to Eddie directly. Hey Eddie

00:11:19   I'm sure you're in charge of this just just came across your webpage

00:11:23   Thank you, I have two follow-up items that I would like to pose to the group if that's okay, okay

00:11:33   Okay as the resident tvOS expert

00:11:36   tvOS 13.3

00:11:39   Adds an interesting feature. It has a setting to I say interesting

00:11:43   It's adds a feature it includes a setting to revert the top shelf UI

00:11:48   So, you know like when you get the big what is currently now

00:11:52   Autoplaying trailers for stuff if you if you were on the right you can now revert this UI to the previous

00:12:00   auto playing video state that was in tvOS 12. This is going to be a setting in 13.3.

00:12:07   So what is currently happening is there's two things going on with the top shelf UI.

00:12:16   Well, it's three things. The third thing is no developers are using it the way that Apple

00:12:21   is because nobody can be bothered, like a lot of tvOS development. Just nobody can be

00:12:25   be bothered to do what Apple would like them to do like the single sign on thing

00:12:29   not the single sign you like the account thing where you can tie like Netflix

00:12:33   could tie their account system to the new user system on tvOS but nobody's

00:12:39   bothering to take advantage of any of these API's but it's possible people to

00:12:43   show their own or to play videos but they're just no one's borrowing to do it

00:12:46   this is Apple showing you what they think you should watch they're making

00:12:51   suggestions to you in this and it's very frustrating for most people. It will now revert back to

00:12:58   if you change the setting to what is in your up next queue so it's showing what you're

00:13:02   actually choosing to watch but it won't be auto playing videos it would just be those

00:13:07   static tiles again. I just changed this setting last night because I have the beta on my Apple

00:13:12   TV. I'm very happy that it's back. I never understood the watch now thing. I have no

00:13:19   problem with the what to watch thing in general, I just don't want the video and I know you

00:13:23   can actually turn off the video by going into accessibility and reducing motion but that

00:13:28   makes other changes that I don't want to make.

00:13:31   TVOS guy, see I know all these hacks.

00:13:34   TVOShacks.net, that's my next website.

00:13:39   And Motorola, they're going to be showing off their foldable Razer phone today.

00:13:43   It hasn't happened yet, I only mention it because if it happens before the episode comes

00:13:48   out. People will be surprised that I didn't talk about it, but it's just because it hasn't

00:13:51   happened as the time we're recording. Maybe I'll talk about it.

00:13:54   Hey, how is your Galaxy Fold?

00:13:56   It's cool. I just tinker around with it. I've been away a bunch, so I haven't been able to play

00:14:01   around with it as much, but like, it's not broken, if that's what you're asking. It's still going.

00:14:05   And I like just like playing with it. They've actually had some software updates, which is nice.

00:14:11   And that's all I have to say on that matter right now.

00:14:15   My tiny topic this week is to pour one out for my short love affair with the new Reminders app.

00:14:23   I really wanted to move into it. It seems like Reminders had its notes moment this year,

00:14:29   but I wrote this blog post really kind of outlining why it doesn't work for me. And

00:14:33   actually before it was a blog post, it was in the Club Max Stories newsletter, and Federico was very

00:14:38   kind to let me repost it. So thank you. And it just doesn't work for me for a bunch of reasons.

00:14:45   the way it sorts like doesn't make any sense to me, you can't sort a list on iOS, you can only

00:14:50   sort it on the Mac. And if you sort by due date, items with no due date appear at the top of the

00:14:56   list is at the bottom, which makes no sense to me. The UI can get pretty junky if you add a bunch of

00:15:03   attachments to things because your mind just wants to show you everything all the time. And so like,

00:15:07   if you have a list and you have, you know, a bunch of tasks, and you have one task with a note and

00:15:14   geolocation and a messages reminder and a website like it all just gets added to

00:15:19   that and it kind of junks up your list view pretty bad but maybe for for most

00:15:26   people those two things aren't a big deal but I think for a lot of people who

00:15:29   are using something like todoist or other programs that make adding

00:15:34   metadata really quick reminder just doesn't do that uses the quick type bar

00:15:38   for some things, but very often you have to go into the the little information

00:15:47   panel to change things about a task where something like todoist is kind of

00:15:52   like a command line where you can just type your task name and enter the list

00:15:56   name and any repeating stuff and the due date the flag all just as text and

00:16:01   reminders want you to pause go to QuickType or hit one of the little

00:16:04   buttons or go into the info panel. And I just found it to be a lot slower than I was hoping.

00:16:09   I really hope reminders can evolve into something that I could use because I like the idea of having

00:16:16   my task lists have all the cool like first party integrations that reminders has is like the thing

00:16:24   of like remind me to ask this person and you attach it to their iMessage is awesome. Like

00:16:30   When I text John, remind me to ask about the trip.

00:16:33   And next time I text him with John, reminder says,

00:16:35   "Hey, remember this?

00:16:37   That's really cool and nothing else can do that."

00:16:40   And so I'm still using reminders like I did

00:16:42   under iOS 12 and before.

00:16:43   I'm using it for some things, mostly geolocation things,

00:16:46   like one-off stuff.

00:16:47   Like the other day, someone had dropped something off

00:16:50   at the house and put it in the mailbox.

00:16:52   And I needed to make sure I got it out of the mailbox

00:16:53   when I got home.

00:16:54   And so I just told my phone, "When I get home,

00:16:58   Remind me to you know, check the mailbox and that's just like a one-off thing

00:17:03   But the geolocation was the perfect way to solve it

00:17:05   And so I'm still using reminders for those sorts of things

00:17:08   But I just can't move to it full-time and and it makes me sad because I think it's a really good app

00:17:13   I think they have a lot of really cool stuff going on in it

00:17:16   But those three things are just like the perfect combination to knock it out of contention for me. I have been

00:17:25   really wanting to try reminders but Todoist keeps doing stuff and I they had

00:17:34   an update recently called the foundation update and it's like part of like a big

00:17:37   overhaul that they're doing and I really really like the stuff they've added like

00:17:44   it's a lot of UI changes really and like surfacing things that were previously

00:17:49   pretty hidden, like the sub-task menu and stuff like that. But I'm very happy with the

00:17:56   changes that they're making and that's making it harder for me to really get up and move

00:18:03   over to reminders. Because it's a big thing to move Task Manager and Todoist is like,

00:18:12   got its claws in me right now because they're making some interesting moves, I think.

00:18:20   I'm still using reminders very happily. I agree with some of Steven's comments. I disagree

00:18:27   when in the article he mentioned that he doesn't like how all kinds of attachments and options

00:18:34   for a single reminder show up in the main list. So like if you have a link, if you have

00:18:38   location. I like that kind of stuff that it's shown in the main list view.

00:18:43   The thing with reminders is that right now it doesn't have all the options that I would like

00:18:50   to have, like sorting or saved searches, you know, that kind of stuff. And for the past several months

00:18:58   really, I've just been making my own with shortcuts. And I know that it's not ideal, like I

00:19:05   I shouldn't have to create a shortcut to sort tasks

00:19:10   within a project by due date, but at least it works.

00:19:13   And I can still use reminders.

00:19:16   And I mean, we're gonna talk about

00:19:19   some of the other reminders shortcuts

00:19:21   that I've made later in the show,

00:19:22   but it works pretty well for me.

00:19:25   Honestly, I don't think I have the same needs

00:19:29   as you or Steven.

00:19:31   Like I mostly just spent,

00:19:33   I do organize my tasks in lists,

00:19:37   but I mostly spend my time in the today and scheduled.

00:19:40   - Yeah, me too.

00:19:41   - Like I rarely go down into an individual project.

00:19:45   So I don't know, it's fun for me.

00:19:48   I would like it to be better.

00:19:50   I hope that we don't have to wait until June

00:19:53   for, you know, like to have sorting on iOS

00:19:56   or just even the ability to attach a document.

00:20:00   If you want to attach a PDF to reminders for now, you can't.

00:20:02   You can only attach a JPEG, which is silly.

00:20:05   Because in Calendar, for example,

00:20:07   you can now attach any document.

00:20:10   You can just pick from the file speaker.

00:20:13   But in Reminders, you can only attach photos,

00:20:15   which doesn't really make any sense.

00:20:17   So here is the other thing that-- listening

00:20:22   to you talk about that and me talking about the Todoist

00:20:25   Foundation thing.

00:20:27   The concern I have with maybe now

00:20:30   I've spent more time thinking about it, of really going all in on reminders, is if there is something

00:20:34   that is frustrating me, it's going to be a long time until they maybe potentially change it. And

00:20:40   again, all apps and services can have problems. Stephen has had the same problems with task

00:20:45   managers forever. Nobody, no matter how much they promise, seem to want to change the things that

00:20:49   annoy him, right? Things won't change their problem. Todoists won't change their problem.

00:20:54   But if a fix is going to happen, I maybe don't have to wait a year for it.

00:20:59   And I think that for me, that is becoming a little too,

00:21:05   too much of a sticking point in the same reason that I don't use Apple's mail

00:21:09   app, right?

00:21:11   For a lot of the same reasons that like some of the decisions that Apple

00:21:16   makes with those apps are counter to what I would want to do.

00:21:21   And I have no ability to really convince them.

00:21:24   and even if I could I'd be waiting a long time for them to make any change.

00:21:28   So, I don't know. I don't know. I haven't fully made my mind up yet

00:21:33   because I've been tinkering with reminders and there's stuff that I do actually really like about it,

00:21:37   but I'm more hesitant than I was before about moving my entire to-do system to it.

00:21:45   That's such an interesting point about so much of Apple software,

00:21:49   is that it is lockstep with iOS releases.

00:21:52   And we've talked about that before, but I really feel like like like apples got to

00:21:58   where possible

00:22:00   sort of

00:22:01   Unchained those things like there's no reason that we should have to wait a year for like you said, Federico

00:22:06   simple attachment changes like just do it in a point update and

00:22:10   I'm hopeful that they are moving that way because you do see things

00:22:15   Come to some apps off cycle

00:22:18   But the big changes they want to store up for those big marketing releases and I just don't think that's the right way to go for

00:22:26   for all components of the system right like I get that for for big things but

00:22:31   reminders is

00:22:33   It's an important app just like notes is an important app, but it's also a really competitive landscape and if they want to

00:22:41   Really take a swing at market share. They've got to treat it more like a standalone product and less like a feature of a larger OS

00:22:48   Yep. All right

00:22:50   Lastly before our first break has Google Docs been updated to include multi-window support. No, no

00:22:57   This is because this is feeling more and more desperate every week now

00:23:01   But I did want to add on your discussion from last time about multi-window support in general

00:23:07   I'd mostly agree with the two of you right like it's not

00:23:10   Groundbreaking but it is really useful to have in certain circumstances like over the last couple of weeks

00:23:16   weeks I've been needing to have multiple pages documents open at the same time

00:23:20   and like before I would have my iPhone and my iPad as a way to do that but I

00:23:25   don't need to do that anymore which is really good and I'm happy to have that I

00:23:29   still want to see more I want to see more apps adopt it I want still want

00:23:33   dedicated fixed spaces so I can just choose two windows pin them together and

00:23:37   they stay together forever but as a step one this is still pretty good it's

00:23:43   useful when I need it, but I'm not like doing all of my work in a million windows all over

00:23:49   iOS.

00:23:50   And that's good because that would be a terrible mess.

00:23:52   Yeah, it gets out of hand pretty quickly, I think.

00:23:55   All right, we've got a lot of stuff to talk about this week.

00:23:57   We have the new 16 inch MacBook Pro, we have a leak about Apple's AR glasses initiative,

00:24:05   and Federico is going to talk about Toolbox Pro, a really fascinating new iOS app that

00:24:10   extends shortcuts.

00:24:11   But before that stuff, let me tell you about our first sponsor, and that is Pingdom.

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00:24:29   Part of me kind of wants to shop for a 4K TV this year.

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00:24:37   You're on a website and it's suddenly unavailable or really slow.

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00:25:30   The long international nightmare is over.

00:25:34   we have a new MacBook Pro keyboard.

00:25:37   Feels good to say that, doesn't it, right?

00:25:39   - Well, it's a new MacBook Pro with a new keyboard.

00:25:42   - It is a new MacBook Pro out of the two MacBook Pro sizes

00:25:47   and three complete notebooks,

00:25:48   and it has a revised keyboard, so.

00:25:50   - Right, because we've had new MacBook Pro keyboards

00:25:53   a few times, and that has not helped anything.

00:25:55   - Every six months, for every six months

00:25:58   for the last 22 years, there's been a new MacBook Pro keyboard.

00:26:01   But Apple, so let's get into this.

00:26:03   So today, after months of rumors,

00:26:06   they released the 16-inch MacBook Pro.

00:26:10   It replaces outright the 15.4-inch model.

00:26:14   So this is not a new,

00:26:15   like we talked about, a new high-end model.

00:26:17   This replaces the 15-inch.

00:26:19   If you want a MacBook Pro,

00:26:20   your options are 13.3 and 16-inch displays.

00:26:24   As we talked about, the keyboard is new.

00:26:28   We're gonna come back to that in a second

00:26:30   'cause I think that's the biggest deal here.

00:26:32   They took the opportunity to make the machine a little bit bigger, not only because of the

00:26:36   screen, but they also went a little bit thicker, adding a new thermal system.

00:26:42   The GIF of it made me reminded me of the iMac Pro website where they talk about all the

00:26:47   air that it can move around.

00:26:49   Apple says this will provide for additional capacity so the CPU and GPU can run hotter

00:26:55   longer and additional 12 watts TDP in the chassis now.

00:27:00   The only GPUs are these new AMD mobile GPUs

00:27:04   that look really good actually.

00:27:07   And they're gonna be warm

00:27:08   and so Apple's given themselves more headroom

00:27:11   in this design which is really good.

00:27:13   There's also crazy new speaker magic

00:27:15   which I'm not sure I fully understand.

00:27:16   Myke, I'm hoping you can explain the speaker thing to me

00:27:19   'cause I read it a couple of times.

00:27:20   I'm not sure actually, grokking what they're doing.

00:27:24   New microphones, please don't podcast with just a laptop

00:27:28   but if you do accidentally, it'll sound better.

00:27:31   So a big deal, and I think what's really interesting

00:27:34   about this machine is that it is the MacBook Pro

00:27:37   we've known for the last three years, right?

00:27:39   The I/O is the same, the design is effectively the same,

00:27:42   right, the industrial design,

00:27:44   the character of the machine hasn't changed.

00:27:46   But they have gone in and updated and changed things

00:27:51   that were really sticking points with a lot of users.

00:27:55   And yes, there are people who would want a SD card slot,

00:27:57   people who still want MagSafe back. I think it's clear that Apple believes

00:28:01   still believes in the general future of the MacBook Pro as they laid out in 2016

00:28:06   where this is a course correction to fix some things on these models that were

00:28:11   problematic but I still think that what they said is this is the MacBook Pro now

00:28:17   that really hasn't changed it's really a very similar machine to my mid 2019 so I

00:28:23   I have the last 15.4 inch MacBook Pro, it is my laptop.

00:28:27   And this and the 16 side by side,

00:28:29   they're very clearly cut from the same cloth,

00:28:32   but this one they've gone in

00:28:33   and really, really changed some things.

00:28:36   So Myke, you have an episode of Upgrade Up with Jason.

00:28:40   Jason has a review unit, he was at the press stuff,

00:28:44   he's talked a lot about it.

00:28:45   You had a really great interview on Upgrade

00:28:46   that I wanna hear about.

00:28:48   - Yep.

00:28:48   - So tell us about Upgrade a little bit

00:28:50   and then let's get into the keyboard.

00:28:52   Yeah, so Jason was at the press briefings in New York,

00:28:56   and he had the ability to spend an entire day,

00:29:00   like a 24-hour period, with the MacBook Pro, the new 16-inch

00:29:03   MacBook Pro.

00:29:04   And we have a long conversation about it,

00:29:06   where we dig into it and kind of go through the ins and outs.

00:29:09   And the episode also has an exclusive interview

00:29:12   with the MacBook Pro product manager, Shruti Hadeer.

00:29:15   And she's incredible.

00:29:18   You should listen to it to hear that.

00:29:19   It kind of sounds, the interview's really interesting

00:29:23   because it kind of sounds like a presentation, right?

00:29:25   Like it sounds like some, it points,

00:29:28   like this is how this product would have been presented

00:29:30   if it was presented.

00:29:31   But the great part is because Jason's there,

00:29:34   Jason can ask more questions,

00:29:35   which he usually can't do during an Apple presentation.

00:29:38   So it's a really great interview

00:29:39   and it unearths a lot of the thinking

00:29:42   that went on kind of behind the scenes, I think,

00:29:45   as to why Apple were making the changes that they're making.

00:29:48   because, I mean, we're gonna talk about this.

00:29:50   There are some changes that everybody wanted

00:29:52   and then there are some changes that they made

00:29:53   which make sense for their customers,

00:29:55   but maybe we didn't necessarily think about them before.

00:29:58   And a lot of them are actually around audio,

00:30:00   which is really interesting.

00:30:01   So you wanted me to explain the speakers.

00:30:04   I can't do an incredible job of this,

00:30:05   but I can tell you kind of the basics.

00:30:07   It's a brand new system.

00:30:09   It's six speakers in the system now,

00:30:11   which are kind of split apart in such a way

00:30:13   that they're trying to do room-filling stereo sound.

00:30:16   Apple were talking about the idea that you could kind of move around the laptop and hear

00:30:21   the audio differently. You know, it reminds me of the HomePod, but obviously it's not

00:30:26   as good as the HomePod, right? Like the way they talk about it at least, with the room

00:30:29   filling sound. But then there's a really interesting thing where they have these things called

00:30:32   dual, they have dual force cancelling woofers. So what's happening is there's like these

00:30:37   two woofers that I believe are facing towards each other and they're doing this like, I

00:30:43   I definitely can't explain this well enough. They're analyzing the sound to cancel each other

00:30:49   out to reduce vibration. So you don't get that, like you don't get like a weird distorted vibrating

00:30:55   sound. So basically what they're doing is they're just trying to make a system inside of a laptop

00:31:00   that can sound as good as it can sound. So that's pretty cool. And then they're also really talking

00:31:05   up this three microphone array that they've got. They're doing beamforming, right, so they can try

00:31:11   and just focus in on the voice. And Apple are literally saying these are good enough

00:31:19   for podcasting. No, there's a million caveats to that. It's better. Here's the thing. If

00:31:26   you podcast on an open laptop, it will sound better than the old one. But your audio is

00:31:31   still going to be bad. And what's even worse is if you're not using headphones, the other

00:31:36   person's audio is going to be in yours and that is an atrocious thing to do to a podcast

00:31:42   editor.

00:31:43   It is like emergencies only and/or not podcasts.

00:31:48   There's that music production that makes way more sense there if you want to get like a

00:31:51   rough scratch or something.

00:31:53   Or if you want to do a conference call or something like that.

00:31:56   It's the same thing, right?

00:31:57   Like Apple, when they was one of the iPad Pro events, they had some sort of announcement

00:32:03   about microphone support or USB, they're like, "Yeah, now you can use your iPad for

00:32:06   podcasting." It's like, no you can't. I mean, you can if you want to do a bunch of

00:32:11   crazy stuff, but like, they did-- A million caveats to how you could use it.

00:32:15   They like using podcasting because it's like a cool thing that cool people do, like us,

00:32:20   clearly, but this is not like a "go buy a microphone." If someone emailed me wanting

00:32:25   to start a podcast, they're like, "How about a new 16-inch MacBook Pro?" Like, cool,

00:32:28   here's an Amazon page with some microphones, go pick one.

00:32:30   because you just spent a lot of money. I mean, it's like, look, in very specific circumstances,

00:32:35   you can make those microphones sound really good, but those circumstances are very specific,

00:32:41   right? And so like on upgrade, we actually switched the audio.

00:32:46   Yeah, I heard that.

00:32:47   The section of the show where we switched the audio from Jason's microphone that you had with

00:32:53   him to the laptop mic so you can hear it. I would say you could probably tell me,

00:32:59   "Oh, I'm using a crappy USB mic and I will believe you."

00:33:02   But that's about as good as you're going to get.

00:33:04   And this is nothing on Apple's technology,

00:33:05   it's just because a dedicated microphone is very different to a laptop microphone.

00:33:11   A dedicated microphone, you speak directly into it.

00:33:14   A laptop microphone, you're just kind of speaking at the computer.

00:33:17   So it can never do as good a job.

00:33:19   And a regular microphone is not directly attached to a keyboard.

00:33:22   Yep, so it's not going to get all the tapping, all the vibration.

00:33:26   and it's not going to hear the fans probably if you know at least they're less likely to hear the fans

00:33:30   this is a much better microphone for the majority of uses that any regular computer user would have

00:33:36   for a microphone you are going to sound vastly better on any phone calls or conference calls

00:33:40   or video calls that you take on this computer and that is like a better thing i mean this is kind of

00:33:46   my feeling about this macbook pro in general and i think apple have been building to this for a few

00:33:51   years and they're doing it again here in different ways, they are shoving in features that are

00:33:58   meant to be angled at specific use cases.

00:34:02   So this is really good for this person doing this with video, this is really good for the

00:34:05   person doing this for audio, and it's probably not amazing for those people, it would be

00:34:09   good in a pinch, but those features can actually be used by regular users more easily.

00:34:15   So this is one of them.

00:34:17   I'm just like, oh great, I can use this and it's better for me when I take those conference

00:34:21   calls.

00:34:22   But I don't think that really any podcast is going to switch.

00:34:26   It's a PR line.

00:34:27   It's not a serious thing.

00:34:29   So that makes sense.

00:34:30   And that is cool.

00:34:31   Like Apple has been really harping on better audio in their products for a long time.

00:34:37   Like that was a big deal with the 2015, the first 12 inch MacBook.

00:34:41   Like I've got one of those.

00:34:42   It sounds incredible, especially considering the size.

00:34:45   And of course you have HomePod and everything else.

00:34:47   They have really upped their game

00:34:49   in sort of the speaker department in the last few years.

00:34:52   And it's cool the laptops get it

00:34:54   'cause a lot of people just edit on a laptop, right?

00:34:58   Or just even you're just watching it,

00:35:00   you're using it as your TV or something like that.

00:35:02   So it's an important aspect of a product

00:35:04   that I'm glad has gotten some attention this time around.

00:35:07   - And especially in a machine that's this size,

00:35:09   because they've made it bigger,

00:35:12   you have the space to do this.

00:35:13   have the space to put the speaker grills in. You don't have to hide them under the keyboard, right?

00:35:17   Like, make it good because it's a big machine. It's a big machine! It's bigger in every way,

00:35:23   and heavier, which is super interesting. But that's what they decided to do.

00:35:28   So do we want to get into the keyboard?

00:35:29   I think you should.

00:35:30   Okay, so this is a radical departure from the butterfly keyboard that, again, showed up on that

00:35:38   first MacBook, actually, and then spread to the MacBook Pro line, and then the MacBook Air last

00:35:43   year and we we don't have to rehash this history today but it has been extremely

00:35:49   unreliable broken keys broken switches double presses all of that sort of one

00:35:56   category of problem and in the second category a lot of people just didn't

00:35:58   like the keyboard right there was no physical escape key the arrow keys you

00:36:03   cannot tell apart by touch and the travel was really low so you should have

00:36:08   had like personal tastes problems and then you had my keyboard is broken type

00:36:13   problems and I think Apple has tried to address both at once so they are calling

00:36:17   this the magic keyboard if you listen to that upgrade interview it's clear this

00:36:21   is not a copy and paste of the external magic keyboard that a lot of us including

00:36:25   me use every day no but it is inspired by the magic keyboard so it does use

00:36:32   scissor switches yeah it does have a rubber dome underneath not steel like

00:36:37   the butterfly keyboard did and it seems like it is effectively the magic

00:36:42   keyboard underneath but they've done some things to add to the key stability.

00:36:45   That was a big reason they went to butterfly. They said that the keys were

00:36:48   more stable, that if you if you hit the corner of a key it didn't sort of bow

00:36:52   and bend under your finger. And so they've done some things to help help

00:36:55   the stabilization, which the scissor key mechanism is sort of inherently unstable

00:37:00   the way that it actually compresses. So they've they've held on to the idea that

00:37:05   these keys to be stable but they've totally redone what's under them to make

00:37:09   them more robust. And they've also addressed a lot of the personal taste

00:37:13   issues. So the touch bar is now smaller with the physical escape key on the end.

00:37:17   It has the inverted T arrows, which the Magic Keyboard by the way doesn't. The

00:37:22   Magic Keyboard, I have one right here in front of my iMac Pro, it has the full

00:37:27   height left and right arrow keys so you can't really tell where you are by feel.

00:37:30   Yeah I think it's very clear that one of the main reasons they are using the

00:37:35   Magic Keyboard name here is to confirm to people in branding that it is not the butterfly

00:37:42   keyboard.

00:37:43   Like they are piggybacking on the popularity of the other keyboard to sell the new keyboard,

00:37:49   which is a fine thing to do because it is closer to that.

00:37:51   But like, it's not the exact same keyboard in a bunch of important ways.

00:37:56   Yeah, I think the Magic Keyboard is pretty well liked.

00:37:59   I mean, I'm really happy with it.

00:38:02   And I think a lot of people are.

00:38:03   I do sort of wonder if this key,

00:38:08   I mean, God forbid this keyboard had problems.

00:38:11   Like, is the use of that name gonna backfire on them?

00:38:14   But I get the sense that they're pretty confident

00:38:16   that this thing is gonna be okay.

00:38:18   - Yeah, it's probably gonna go back to within the realm

00:38:22   of reliability of the previous laptop keyboards

00:38:25   'cause it's way closer to those, right?

00:38:26   Then they know they can make those,

00:38:28   they know what needs to be done on those.

00:38:28   - Yeah, yeah, so I think if you have,

00:38:30   If you have been, like me, have had issues

00:38:34   with the old keyboard, my 2016 MacBook Pro,

00:38:37   the key fell off and I had to argue with the Apple Store

00:38:41   'cause it was before the repair program.

00:38:43   It was a nightmare.

00:38:44   My 2019, which is my current MacBook Pro

00:38:48   with the revised materials and they have

00:38:51   the little silicon gaskets and everything,

00:38:54   it's actually been pretty reliable.

00:38:55   I don't use it every day, so maybe that helps,

00:38:57   but I don't like the feel of the keyboard.

00:38:59   I don't like the low travel and so the new one seems like an upgrade either way, you know

00:39:03   Unless you're one of those people I'm convinced those people are out there who really love the way the butterfly keyboard feels they who really like

00:39:10   It you're gonna be disappointed by this because this is a reversion to the older design

00:39:13   But I think that that group is probably a pretty small minority

00:39:17   It could have some overlap though because like they've done stuff to like

00:39:20   Make the keys more stable and the keys are large

00:39:24   So you might still get a lot of the things that you liked about the butterfly keyboard

00:39:28   in the new one, but without being the clicky-clackiness.

00:39:32   But who knows, different strokes, different folks.

00:39:35   - Yeah, and this is a thing that even amongst

00:39:38   the old MacBook Pros, 'cause I had a 2016 and 2017

00:39:42   and now the 2019, they're all radically different.

00:39:45   And I dislike the 2019 the least.

00:39:50   The 2016 was the worst.

00:39:52   They have improved it and changed it,

00:39:54   and this is gonna be a big departure.

00:39:56   But it's interesting because it's really hard

00:39:59   to remember a time where Apple has gone back on something

00:40:04   that they pushed so hard when it was launched.

00:40:06   Apple does change its mind and things do change over time,

00:40:10   but this is really interesting to me.

00:40:14   And you can see--

00:40:15   - It's also something that they didn't create a new thing.

00:40:17   They're actually telling you it's a thing

00:40:18   that already exists, right?

00:40:20   Like, it's the Magic Keyboard, right?

00:40:23   They didn't come up with like scissor slide keyboard X, right?

00:40:27   Like they just, they are going back to a keyboard that was introduced in 2015 to draw their

00:40:34   inspiration for the new keyboard.

00:40:37   And in the interview, it's spoken that, you know, they did a lot of internal testing at

00:40:41   Apple and these keyboards, you know, and what people want and the reliability and all that

00:40:46   stuff.

00:40:47   So I believe they've taken this really seriously.

00:40:48   And I think they knew that they had a real problem on their hands.

00:40:53   I think them talking about how long all that testing took and everything is sort of a,

00:40:58   like, yeah, we know this took a while, but it's going to be worth it type of feel.

00:41:02   So I hope that that it is as good as we think it is, because I have pretty high expectations

00:41:09   of this keyboard.

00:41:11   And I think a lot of people probably do.

00:41:14   In like 15 or 20 years time, there's going to be somebody like you who's starting a whatever

00:41:20   YouTube channel is, you know, whatever YouTube is in 15 years, right? Like

00:41:24   whatever that thing is. And they're gonna try and collect all of the laptops with

00:41:28   the different keyboard iterations, you know? It's just gonna, yeah, that's... that'll

00:41:33   be me. So I have two. I have the 2015 MacBook and I have the 2019 MacBook Pro.

00:41:40   For now. I have breaking news. Okay. I have an email back from trailers@mac.com.

00:41:48   Are you being serious?

00:41:49   I will put...

00:41:50   Are you being serious right now?

00:41:53   I'm gonna put a screenshot...

00:41:54   What?

00:41:55   And I'm gonna obscure my email address because I used my personal email address.

00:41:58   This is on very active watch then.

00:42:01   But I am putting a...

00:42:03   I can't believe that this is happening to us right now.

00:42:06   Who cares about the rest of these products?

00:42:09   So I wrote...

00:42:10   I told you what I wrote.

00:42:12   That it brought me real joy remembering QuickTime.

00:42:14   And I got an Emoticon smiley face back.

00:42:17   So it is 100% eddy cue.

00:42:20   That's totally eddy.

00:42:21   That's totally eddy.

00:42:22   This is the best thing.

00:42:23   That is quite possibly the best response that could have been given.

00:42:29   Where is this?

00:42:30   I'm screwing my email so I just have to upload it once.

00:42:34   I don't want to share my personal email with the world.

00:42:37   I mean, look, I have two work emails.

00:42:41   If you want to email me, it's stephen.reelie.fm.

00:42:44   I'm not giving you my personal Gmail account.

00:42:45   Oh now we know it's Gmail, I can guess that. Is it Steven@gmail?

00:42:49   Mmm...

00:42:49   Alright, I'm putting this in the chat room.

00:42:52   OldMacFan@gmail.com

00:42:57   ResetThePRAM@gmail.com

00:43:00   Oh my god, they didn't even send an emoji! That shows how old this person is!

00:43:04   I said Emoticon, yeah.

00:43:06   Ah, that's the best, right? Because they are living in the past, this person, you know?

00:43:14   Yes, this is totally on brand.

00:43:16   - Wow.

00:43:17   - This is so eddy.

00:43:18   - Really good, right?

00:43:19   - This is excellent.

00:43:21   - And it's one of those emoticons with the nose.

00:43:25   So you know, like the moon business.

00:43:28   (laughing)

00:43:30   - I also have some other breaking news

00:43:33   or some real time follow up.

00:43:35   Apparently the extended keyboard with the number pad,

00:43:37   which I don't use because it's dumb,

00:43:40   has inverted T keys, but the compact one does not.

00:43:44   So I just wanted to correct that before people send me

00:43:46   a bunch of pieces of keyboards.

00:43:48   - Nobody uses the numpad one though, right?

00:43:50   Isn't that, we could decide that previously?

00:43:52   - Yeah, no one uses it.

00:43:54   So yeah, that is the, that's sort of the gist

00:43:59   of the MacBook Pro keyboard.

00:44:00   They've gone to the well of the Magic Keyboard

00:44:02   and drawn up fresh water of typing pleasure.

00:44:06   And here we are.

00:44:08   Mm-hmm.

00:44:11   I was like three sentences into that and didn't know what to do.

00:44:15   But what do y'all think about the cadence of the spec bumps on the MacBook Pro?

00:44:23   So looking over the last couple of years, because these got a spec bump.

00:44:27   It wasn't just a new keyboard.

00:44:29   They are slightly faster CPUs and much better GPU and better faster RAM and SSDs.

00:44:35   We had 2016, which was the fall.

00:44:40   And then we had 2017 in the summer that was at WWDC.

00:44:45   And then 2018 was July, so a little after WWDC.

00:44:50   And then we get to 2019, and like my machine came out

00:44:54   in May, and here we are in November,

00:44:56   and again, it is spec bumped.

00:44:59   I like this cadence, because Apple just ignored the Mac

00:45:02   for so long.

00:45:03   And the MacBook Pro is, it's gotta be the most used Mac

00:45:08   by, at least by people who care about specs.

00:45:12   Like the MacBook Air has gotten one update,

00:45:14   the Mac Mini hasn't.

00:45:16   But the MacBook Pro, they seem to really,

00:45:18   at least the 15 inch, they seem to really be,

00:45:20   you know, their foot on the gas.

00:45:22   Do you guys think this is something

00:45:23   that they can continue?

00:45:24   Do you think it's a good thing they're doing it?

00:45:26   Do you think people are frustrated

00:45:27   they bought a computer in July,

00:45:29   then it was updated in May?

00:45:30   Like, how do you feel about it?

00:45:32   Frustration thing is always going to be a problem, especially on these types of products like

00:45:37   iPhones, iPads, you can pretty much guess when they're going to come out but it seems

00:45:40   like a lot of the MacBook Pro stuff has just kind of appeared, you know, whenever it's

00:45:44   appeared.

00:45:45   I think I would be surprised if it maintained the pace that it's been at because it really

00:45:52   feels like Apple's just been trying to undo the problems and has been inching, inching,

00:45:58   inching.

00:45:59   like, all right, so we put better chips in them

00:46:02   and we made them more powerful.

00:46:04   Now we've fixed the keyboard a little bit

00:46:07   and now we've fixed the keyboard a little bit more.

00:46:08   We promised the keyboard to fix this time.

00:46:10   But I don't know if we're gonna see

00:46:15   another revision in four or five months time.

00:46:18   If they've got it right, we'll wait a year now.

00:46:21   - I mean, if the updates continue to be small,

00:46:23   they could just keep increasing core count.

00:46:26   I don't know, I don't keep up with Intel's roadmap anymore

00:46:29   that's a game of frustration but I think they're it seemed like they're committed

00:46:33   to when something is available they'll do it and if it's six months or nine

00:46:39   months I mean but this is such a big jump like the power is such a big jump

00:46:44   they've like so they the chips and the graphics cards are two times more

00:46:48   powerful than what they've replaced you can now put 64 gigabytes of RAM and 8

00:46:52   terabytes of SSD storage in these things they don't need to touch this for a

00:46:56   while it's gonna be fine. Yeah. That made big jumps. Would you accept I don't have

00:47:05   any opinions as an answer? I know you're over there having a cup of coffee while

00:47:09   we talk about the MacBook Pro. No, I'm just listening to you guys. It's

00:47:14   interesting, I just, it's not that I don't care. Make no mistake, it's not that I

00:47:19   don't care. It's that I, it's like when I listen to politics on the news,

00:47:25   It was like, I don't have an opinion.

00:47:27   I trust what you're saying.

00:47:31   Yeah.

00:47:31   - So yeah, that's the MacBook Pro.

00:47:35   I do have questions about what they could do in the future.

00:47:40   The 13-inch is still hanging out there.

00:47:42   What I would like to see is a 14-inch MacBook Pro.

00:47:46   That's the size they used to ship

00:47:47   like in the PowerBook G3 days.

00:47:49   14-inch is a pretty sweet laptop size

00:47:51   'cause it would still be more portable than this thing,

00:47:56   which like you said is a little bit bigger than the 15,

00:47:59   but you get nice screen size.

00:48:01   And if they really did 14, they go from 13.3 up to 14,

00:48:06   and this on the 15, they went 15.4 to 16.

00:48:09   So if they do it to a round number,

00:48:11   it'd be even a little bit bigger increase.

00:48:13   So I would be excited about a 14-inch MacBook Pro.

00:48:17   - I have a concern about a 14-inch MacBook Pro.

00:48:20   So one of my most important things for a laptop

00:48:24   is portability.

00:48:26   Maybe it won't be that.

00:48:28   If it's close to the change between the 15 and 16,

00:48:31   the thing's only like--

00:48:32   it's not that much bigger.

00:48:33   Right, but I want the lightest computer

00:48:35   I can possibly have.

00:48:36   Well, then you need a MacBook Air.

00:48:38   And this is what I'm going to say.

00:48:42   I was thinking that I would update my MacBook Pro

00:48:45   at some point, but I want to wait for the keyboards

00:48:48   to roll around.

00:48:49   And so I want to wait and see now, I think,

00:48:51   if the MacBook Air gets the new keyboard.

00:48:54   And then that's the machine that I would want.

00:48:57   Well, I think doing that, while it may frustrate people

00:49:00   who want the most powerful computer to also be

00:49:02   the smallest possible size, I think

00:49:04   it kind of makes sense for Apple to have the MacBook Air stay

00:49:08   at 13 inches, be smaller and lighter.

00:49:11   Because right now, the 13-inch MacBook Pro and the Air--

00:49:13   It actually makes sense for them to make the MacBook Pro,

00:49:16   the smaller one, bigger and heavier.

00:49:18   because then it pushes the air further apart again.

00:49:22   - Yep, 'cause they are very similar right now,

00:49:24   side by side.

00:49:25   I also just wonder what they're doing

00:49:26   because the 13 and 16 inch have different pages

00:49:29   on Apple's website, and that's never been done before.

00:49:32   - Well, they're vastly different computers now, right?

00:49:34   - Well, it may just be because they gotta talk

00:49:36   about the keyboard, and that's awkward,

00:49:37   if the 13 inch is just sitting there, right?

00:49:39   Like, separated a little bit.

00:49:41   I think some people, I saw some people on Twitter

00:49:44   say they were worried about the future

00:49:45   of the 13 inch MacBook Pro.

00:49:47   I'm not.

00:49:48   We did this like five or six years ago,

00:49:51   and a lot of people thought the 13 inch MacBook Pro

00:49:54   was going away, and it turns out,

00:49:56   then Apple was like, actually it's the most popular Mac ever,

00:49:59   so here's the retina version.

00:50:01   I feel like the 13 inch MacBook Pro is very popular,

00:50:03   and I think making it a 14,

00:50:05   applying this new thermal system to it,

00:50:08   doing these things would make it even more popular.

00:50:11   So I'd like to see what that does.

00:50:14   Like you said, the pricing on the SSD and the RAM

00:50:17   that is higher than ever,

00:50:19   like the capacities are higher than ever,

00:50:21   eight terabytes SSD, 64 gigabytes of RAM.

00:50:24   Apple has continued to march down the pricing of SSDs.

00:50:27   The eight terabyte is 2200.

00:50:33   2200 dollars in the US.

00:50:35   And this summer it would have been 2800 dollars

00:50:39   for a four terabyte in the 15 inch.

00:50:41   So they continue to bring pricing down,

00:50:43   make it more aggressive.

00:50:45   and the stock models have doubled their SSD storage.

00:50:48   So it used to be 256 and 512, now it's 512 and one terabyte

00:50:53   in the two stock configurations.

00:50:55   And I think that's a welcome change.

00:50:57   - Yeah, when you max one of these out,

00:50:59   it doesn't go as expensive as I thought it would have.

00:51:02   - Yeah.

00:51:02   - You can max it out at like six grand,

00:51:04   which is very expensive, but I would have thought

00:51:07   that it would have gone higher than that, but it doesn't.

00:51:11   - Anything else on the MacBook Pros?

00:51:12   I'm excited.

00:51:13   - I think it's a good machine,

00:51:14   or how excited are you, Steven?

00:51:16   (laughs)

00:51:18   - So I have the 2019, I have the last probably,

00:51:22   15.4 inch MacBook Pro, and I'm not gonna upgrade it.

00:51:25   It's three months old, it is covered in stickers,

00:51:30   like an obscene amount of stickers, and--

00:51:32   - Stickers come off.

00:51:33   - That's true, I know you know that,

00:51:35   but it's also my secondary machine.

00:51:37   You know, my iMac Pro is what I use every day.

00:51:40   I have the i9, it's plenty powerful

00:51:41   when I need it on the road,

00:51:43   And so I'm gonna hold onto this, I think, for a long time.

00:51:47   And because it's the last one--

00:51:48   - Going to the Apple Store anytime soon?

00:51:49   - No, I was there last night to return the AirPods,

00:51:52   but you know, old MacBook Pros are out.

00:51:55   There was a lady buying a 15-inch MacBook Pro,

00:51:58   and I wanted to be like, hey, the new one may be coming.

00:52:01   Rumors seem to say that it's coming,

00:52:03   but I didn't intervene.

00:52:04   - She's in overtime periods, it's fine.

00:52:06   - Yeah, I didn't want to be that weirdo

00:52:08   telling somebody not to buy something.

00:52:09   Yeah, so I'm gonna hold onto the 15-inch,

00:52:11   because it's the last one I'll use it and then it will be ushered into my collection because it's

00:52:16   the final 15 inch MacBook Pro, a size that we've known for a really long time. Now it's gone. That's

00:52:21   kind of weird. Goodbye old friend. Goodbye. This episode of Connected is brought to you by

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00:54:18   of connected and all of Relay FM. There was also some news about the the Mac Pro.

00:54:24   Remember that? I do. I think about it all the time. It is coming in December.

00:54:30   Apple confirmed that to members of the press this week just like the iMac Pro

00:54:34   did two years ago, which I think is what we predicted on the show that it would

00:54:37   be the very end of the year. There's some small news on this. 4 terabyte

00:54:42   SSD was the max before, now it will be 8 to match the new MacBook Pro. And they've

00:54:48   made some tweaks to the afterburner card. That is the the optional card made for

00:54:54   offloading video processing to take it off the CPU and GPU. When Apple showed it

00:55:00   off this summer it was three streams of 8k video. This is what the afterburner

00:55:04   could handle. That at the time seemed like magic. I got to see it in the demos and it was just

00:55:09   unbelievable to see 8k video playing and you go to activity monitor and the CPU is just hanging out

00:55:16   like not breaking a sweat. Well, 3 wasn't enough and it turns out it's actually going to be able

00:55:21   to do six streams of 8k video now which is bananas. Like I cannot wrap my head around this, how they're

00:55:28   able to double its capacity. It is an option. We don't know how much that option is going to cost.

00:55:33   We don't know how much anything's gonna cost. We don't know when it's gonna come out, but it is coming soon

00:55:38   So by the end of the year, we will know much more about the Mac Pro and that is very exciting. Of course

00:55:45   There was no display. No cheaper display. No

00:55:48   and

00:55:50   The pro display XDR got mentioned during all of the press stuff

00:55:54   Because the MacBook Pro can drive two of them wild so you can hook up a twenty eight hundred dollar laptop to two

00:56:02   thousand dollar displays. Yeah which seems about right economically I think

00:56:05   that's how that works. It's called economies of scale. Exactly I'm

00:56:10   intrigued to see what these MacBook Pro updates will do to the pricing

00:56:15   configurations of the Mac Pro because they say like they've made some pricing

00:56:21   configuration options available for this Pro product which is cheaper than we

00:56:26   would have expected and I'm keen to see because the expectation is the Mac Pro

00:56:31   will be astronomical, right? If you want to do anything to it price wise, I'm keen to see what

00:56:36   actually ends up happening there. I think the SSD pricing coming down, I would imagine the Mac Pro

00:56:42   will match it. I don't know why it wouldn't. It'd be wild if it didn't, right? Because you'd assume

00:56:46   they're probably using the same same stuff. Yeah, the RAM I think will probably be a little more on

00:56:51   the MacBook Pro because it's easy RAM and you know, fancier, faster desktop, full size DIMMs.

00:56:56   But I don't know, I think you're right.

00:56:59   I think the Mac Pro is gonna be expensive.

00:57:02   Look, the base machine is expensive

00:57:06   and not as good as the iMac Pro spec-wise.

00:57:08   So even to match the iMac Pro before you buy a display,

00:57:12   I mean, it's gonna be thousands.

00:57:14   But I think the high end will be,

00:57:17   it's still gonna be ridiculous,

00:57:19   but I think it's gonna be slightly less ridiculous

00:57:21   if you just wanna build a machine to match the iMac Pro.

00:57:25   You want the same amount of RAM, the same storage.

00:57:28   I think it's gonna be better than people fear,

00:57:30   but I'm still burying my money in the backyard

00:57:33   for when the day comes, so to speak.

00:57:36   Don't dig up my yard, please.

00:57:38   - There's definitely no money in the yard.

00:57:39   - There's definitely no money in the yard.

00:57:41   Myke, can you tell us about the AR glasses situation?

00:57:45   - Yeah, wild report from the information,

00:57:48   which the information as a website name

00:57:50   sounds strange when you say it out loud,

00:57:51   like it's an oracle.

00:57:54   the information has reported, but the website, the information has reported that Apple recently

00:58:00   held a meeting of over 1000 employees detailing their AR and VR roadmap for the next few years.

00:58:08   This meeting was run by Myke Rockwell, who runs Apple's AR and VR teams. You may remember

00:58:13   him from being on the talk show a couple of years ago at WWDC.

00:58:16   Oh yeah.

00:58:17   There's that guy. Apparently, so the 1000 employees, it's not just like a random assortment

00:58:22   of people. That's how many people Apple apparently has working on their AR/VR efforts. I assume

00:58:28   they are not dedicated employees. I would assume that they are employees who have a

00:58:33   hand in this as part of their role. That would be my personal assumption because a thousand

00:58:37   people seems like a lot of people. So I would expect that there are people that work on

00:58:42   this software and this software who are involved in AR/VR. For example, engineers who work

00:58:48   Metal are probably involved in this but it's not what they do right? So this roadmap had two major points on it.

00:58:58   In 2022 Apple is planning to release a mixed reality headset. Mixed reality headset is kind of like HoloLens.

00:59:06   So it is a headset that could be used for a combination of AR, VR like stuff. So you could use it for both things effectively.

00:59:17   There's a bunch of technological ways in which you could like, you can have visors which

00:59:21   will allow you to watch just video for example, or you could have it so you could look around

00:59:26   a room and like see things around a room.

00:59:29   We've AR glasses coming in 2023.

00:59:32   The mixed reality headset would be kind of like these Hololens, Oculus type devices.

00:59:39   You would expect it to be kind of like the devices now, like the Oculus devices think

00:59:43   it's the Quest which is the one which doesn't need to be hooked into a PC to work.

00:59:49   Apple apparently believed that AR glasses could replace iPhones in roughly a decade.

00:59:55   Very weird thing to think about, I think, and say. One interesting tidbit about the

01:00:01   way the glasses would work is like, so let's imagine that me and Federico are having a

01:00:05   conversation and he gets bored and starts checking Twitter on his glasses. The lenses

01:00:10   and his glasses would darken which would show that they were being used which is both weird,

01:00:16   cool, I don't know how I feel about it. I don't like the sound of that it sounds...

01:00:24   No but it's like I would want to know if he wasn't paying attention to me though,

01:00:28   right? Like the reason they're doing this is to try and stop the social like awkwardness of it all.

01:00:35   Yeah, but are they gonna... I don't know. It's like the whole premise of "Oh yeah, I'm in front of you,

01:00:41   but let me check out of this conversation and read my email through my eyes." Like, I don't...

01:00:47   I don't want to sound like that guy, but maybe this is a bridge too far. Maybe it is. Let's pause that

01:00:54   for a second. There's a bit more detail and I want to come back to that point. So, this meeting, I can

01:01:01   only assume Apple knew that it would get out. A thousand people's too many people.

01:01:05   I wonder if potentially this is part of the plan because rumors were heating up about 2020 being

01:01:11   the year of AR and clearly Apple are not ready for 2020 to have an AR focused product. I'm not

01:01:19   saying this is the reason they held this meeting but I'm sure it was a nice secondary reason to

01:01:26   have it, right? Like you can kind of get the message out a little bit. Bloomberg then had a

01:01:30   report so Mark Gurman at Bloomberg had a report saying that the iPad Pro, we've heard this stuff

01:01:35   before, will feature a 3D camera for enhanced AR technology. This is previously rumored as

01:01:39   being something for 2020 iPhones. Gurman also now revises previous AR claims that coincide with what

01:01:45   the information reported saying that Apple had changed plans to shift from 2020 to 2022,

01:01:50   states that the headset will focus on gaming, video and virtual meetings before the AR glasses,

01:01:56   which would then in theory be enough to, I mean, you know, you'd kind of expect that they would

01:02:00   launch kind of like how the Apple Watch launched in regards to what they will be used for and how

01:02:05   much they can do, but Apple seemed to believe that this could be the future of everything.

01:02:10   So I've been thinking about this and I think there's a list for me. So the way that I look

01:02:16   at this, I was more excited about the future, you know, imagining this future where everybody

01:02:25   super fast access to the internet through glasses, right? And so you have content, you

01:02:31   have directions, you have this UI that overlays with the real world. I was more excited about

01:02:38   this until maybe last year, because I feel like over the last year things have really

01:02:45   gone dark in terms of like the internet's effects on people. And I feel like at least

01:02:52   for me there's a correlation between all the terrible things that I've heard and seen like

01:02:57   social media and Facebook and you know the convergence of tech and politics like all

01:03:03   these things that have happened have sort of like dampened my my excitement in terms

01:03:08   of like yeah I'm not sure I want Twitter in front of my eyes or like... Do you want to

01:03:13   be constantly strapped in? Yeah I'm not sure I want to anymore like I was more excited

01:03:19   about this until, yeah, maybe last year, maybe a couple of years ago. Like, in thinking about

01:03:24   this, I don't feel, right now, you know, couple of years before, we've been here, the three

01:03:32   of us, before we were doing a show before the Apple Watch. We were doing a show while

01:03:37   the Apple Watch was a rumor, and a couple of years out. And I'm not, at this moment,

01:03:43   so two years, three years before this potential release of the Apple glasses, I am not as

01:03:48   excited like I was for the Apple Watch two to three years before it came out. Because

01:03:54   the whole idea of like I'm trying to use the internet less. I don't want to have it in

01:04:00   front of my eyes all the time. And so I think the problem is in this idea of it becoming

01:04:07   the device that becomes your device which is the thing that makes it the most uncomfortable.

01:04:12   If we're thinking about this as a... Right? Because I can't put down my phone. I can't

01:04:15   downwards, especially me as a glasses wearer, so this would replace my vision glasses, right?

01:04:21   Like I have no way of easily getting away from them. Like it seems like a peculiar,

01:04:26   like the idea of this being a... I would be without the internet and blind. Great, this

01:04:31   is a perfect mixture. Like as the idea of this being a device like the Apple Watch,

01:04:36   which you use in certain circumstances has certain functions for you. Interesting as

01:04:41   as being the main device, more concerning, right?

01:04:45   - Well, I think it takes the problem with the Apple Watch

01:04:51   where it is still at times inappropriate

01:04:54   to look at your watch.

01:04:55   So I had this situation just the other day.

01:04:57   I was with one of my parents

01:04:59   and I got a text message or something,

01:05:02   I was wearing my Apple Watch and I looked down at it

01:05:05   and like, "Oh, do you need to go?"

01:05:08   I was like, "Oh, no, no, no, like I got a text message."

01:05:11   and then I just sound like a jerk, right?

01:05:13   The Apple Watch show has some of those contextual problems.

01:05:16   Glasses, I think, make it worse because,

01:05:19   take the dims when you look at the screen,

01:05:22   like that crazy idea off the table,

01:05:24   you could have no idea if someone's paying attention

01:05:26   to you or not.

01:05:27   Like the other person has problems too.

01:05:31   I agree with what you said, Federico,

01:05:32   I don't want the internet like that close to me,

01:05:34   but it's also things like notifications

01:05:36   and all this stuff the Apple Watch does

01:05:39   where sometimes I want to take my Apple Watch off

01:05:41   and I don't wear it every day,

01:05:42   and there are times where I don't need it to do its thing,

01:05:46   but glasses amplifies all of that in a way

01:05:50   that I don't want to have anything to do with.

01:05:54   - And also, isn't the point of this

01:05:56   so you can look at people and get information about them,

01:05:59   isn't that the point of this technology?

01:06:01   Like, really, isn't that why it's supposed to exist?

01:06:04   - And the more you think about it,

01:06:08   the more you start running into the same issues that Google faced years ago with the Google

01:06:12   Glass product. Like, and then you got to think about like putting on some kind of LED indicator

01:06:19   if you're taking pictures or videos of somebody and it just becomes awkward. And there's just

01:06:24   this weird disconnect between like the same company that makes screen time and is, you

01:06:32   you know, praising the idea of trying to use phones less and the internet less and keeping

01:06:38   an eye on your usage habits. It's also working on glasses that you can put on your, literally

01:06:44   on your face. I don't know, like, is it the same company is like preaching two different

01:06:51   ideas here. And yes, we don't know exactly what the product is like. Maybe it has some

01:06:56   very specific applications. And so you can make the argument that, oh, but you, you know,

01:07:01   only gonna use the glasses when you're checking out directions or if you really

01:07:06   gotta respond to a message. But the problem is you gotta remember that humans

01:07:11   are very bad at practicing restraint. And so the moment that you put on the glasses

01:07:17   like you're gonna use them all the time and you're gonna have these people like

01:07:21   in you know like in in the movie The Matrix like they're plugged in and

01:07:25   they're like checked out they're gone they're looking at their feeds and their

01:07:28   If you put Twitter on my face, I am constantly reading Twitter. That's what's happening to me.

01:07:33   Exactly! Like, I can control myself. I'm not a robot. I'm a human and you give me the temptation, I want the temptation.

01:07:41   And so, I don't know, man, dystopian is an adjective that's overused. But it does feel like that.

01:07:49   Like, I don't know. The idea that the lenses darken, like, oh my god, what is that? I know!

01:07:56   No, that might not be the thing. But like, I,

01:07:59   I agree with what they're attempting to do there. Right. Which is like,

01:08:03   it's like a, you said about, um,

01:08:05   you should have an led indicator from taking a picture, right? Like that's,

01:08:09   that's the type of thing that they are trying to do. Right. So it's,

01:08:12   it's in a way it is Apple's attempt to

01:08:17   discourage you from using this technology when you should be having human

01:08:22   interactions. Like that's all well and good,

01:08:25   but that's not how people work.

01:08:27   - Let me--

01:08:28   - Yeah, but you know what the solution could be?

01:08:30   Just don't make the glasses.

01:08:32   Like, if you gotta think about--

01:08:33   - But what else are they gonna do?

01:08:35   - I don't know, make a car.

01:08:37   - Why can't these companies just for once

01:08:39   just keep doing what they're doing?

01:08:41   - Because that's not how companies work anymore.

01:08:42   - Yeah.

01:08:43   - Right, like--

01:08:45   - Everybody has to do everything.

01:08:46   - Yes, this was a great little sound bite

01:08:48   that was on ATP a couple of weeks ago,

01:08:50   and it is just a great way to put it.

01:08:53   Why do all companies feel like

01:08:54   have to do everything now. That is where we are. I mean, and the reason is because that's

01:09:00   what technology companies have to do now. You don't have a choice, right? Like if you

01:09:03   want to be on the stock market, like that's where you are now, right? Like if you want

01:09:06   to have a profitable company on the stock on the stock exchange, you need to be in every

01:09:10   area. Plus all companies want to lock you in forever. They want to get more average

01:09:15   revenue per user, right? Like this is how you do it is by you provide people with literally

01:09:21   everything they could possibly want. It's the only way you get people to stay, um, is

01:09:26   the thinking. And this is the next frontier, right? Like I talk about foldable phones,

01:09:32   right? That's what I talk about a bunch and it's the same principle that I use foldable

01:09:35   phones. It's really the only thing that these companies can focus on because no one's had

01:09:43   the iPhone idea. So you have two areas now. You can work on screens that change in size

01:09:51   foldable technology or you work on AR/VR. These are the areas of technology that exist within

01:09:58   our immediate grasp because nobody's had any revelatory breakthrough so this is what people

01:10:03   are working on, at least working on with any public eye on them. Because these are the areas

01:10:10   of technology that are going to be explored over the next few years whether they work or not.

01:10:14   But this is why, right? Snapchat's still working on their spectacles and they have more that they're

01:10:19   They're working on Facebook's work and stuff like this.

01:10:21   Google's working on stuff like this.

01:10:22   Like this is what technology companies are making.

01:10:25   - Let me ask you guys this.

01:10:26   You brought up Google Glass a second ago

01:10:28   and my impression is that that hurt Google's brand

01:10:33   for a while.

01:10:35   That people maybe who didn't think Google was creepy before

01:10:38   thought Google was creepy afterwards

01:10:40   because the Google Glass situation

01:10:42   just went so poorly for them.

01:10:44   Part of that was technology,

01:10:45   part of that was the customer base

01:10:47   and some terrible things people did with them.

01:10:49   Do you think that Apple risks the same brand damage

01:10:53   by releasing something like these glasses?

01:10:56   - Yes. - Yeah, definitely.

01:10:58   - Because it is an inherently complicated

01:11:02   and difficult thing to do.

01:11:03   This is an area that could have genuine,

01:11:07   interesting use cases,

01:11:09   but you are bridging some real social norms.

01:11:12   We have done it before.

01:11:16   Smartphones became a thing it broke all social convention and we started again, right?

01:11:21   over the span of like a couple of years

01:11:23   we changed everything about how we

01:11:26   live our daily lives because these device like I was just thinking about a couple of days ago like

01:11:32   Me and you know, we're both edit. We're just hanging out together and wedding photos on our phones to post on Instagram

01:11:38   And this is like a thing that we like to do we do at the same time

01:11:41   We just you know

01:11:42   We enjoy it. That is a super weird thing to do because we are together but not together

01:11:47   We're doing this like solitary thing on our own

01:11:50   Devices right like based on some other conventions. We are being antisocial

01:11:56   but we don't see it that way, you know, it's like phone time and

01:12:00   We accept this

01:12:04   People accept this because that is where we are now because we changed our social conventions

01:12:09   It is possible we could do that again, but I don't see right now with everything that

01:12:17   we could conceive that this product could be good enough to make us do it.

01:12:23   The reason it happened is because the iPhone was so good from day one.

01:12:27   It blew our minds, right?

01:12:29   Because it was so good.

01:12:31   It made it worth it.

01:12:34   And to do that again is a very, very difficult thing.

01:12:38   It is a once in a generation type thing, right?

01:12:41   It's happened like two or three times in technology history, you know, recent technology history,

01:12:46   right?

01:12:47   Like luckily Apple's been there pretty much every time for this, but it is a very, very

01:12:52   difficult thing to do.

01:12:54   You know, like one other example I might give is like the Game Boy.

01:12:57   That's another one, right?

01:12:59   Where like it became fine to, to, cause the Game Boy, the way you play the Game Boy is

01:13:03   kind of like the way you use an iPhone, right?

01:13:05   and that was perfectly acceptable because the Game Boy was a great piece of technology.

01:13:08   But it is a very difficult thing to do this, to change the way that people interact with

01:13:15   other people and technology in their lives. It doesn't happen very often.

01:13:18   And we weren't ready for it with Google Glass, so it got laughed away.

01:13:21   There is absolutely nothing to say right now that any AR glasses from any company could be the thing

01:13:27   to really hit a home run. And it feels like it is a harder technology problem to solve than the

01:13:33   the iPhone was.

01:13:36   Let me ask you this. Do you guys listen to music or podcasts wearing AirPods or headphones

01:13:45   while you're at home and your wife or friends or kids are also home?

01:13:51   Yes.

01:13:52   Yes. I don't.

01:13:53   Okay. We very frequently want to listen to podcasts at the same time at home while doing

01:13:57   house-related stuff and we choose to listen to different things, so AirPods is the easiest

01:14:01   way to do that, right? That's why.

01:14:03   Hmm. Interesting. Interesting. Yeah. Sylvia doesn't listen to podcasts. But also, like,

01:14:11   we have this thing that, like, we listen to music together and both of us, I guess, we

01:14:18   find that we find it kind of rude if, you know, we have some time together and one of

01:14:24   us decides to listen to something on their own. And so that's kind of like I see the

01:14:30   glasses if like even more like we even try I generally make an effort not to

01:14:37   check Twitter or work like use my phone as little as possible while I have time

01:14:42   with Sylvia like it's just the thing that I've been doing for the past couple

01:14:45   of years really so I don't know maybe I come at this from a slightly different

01:14:50   perspective because I do believe that yes I know that it's the norm for people

01:14:55   to hang out and just be on their phones, I think it's totally weird and wrong, personally.

01:15:01   Well, I will just clarify for me, when we do it, it's like a choice that we've made,

01:15:06   right? Like, we're gonna do this now as opposed to... We try our best at home to not allow

01:15:12   for the mindless picking up of a device when we're spending time together, right? And that

01:15:17   was something that I used to do more and have wanted, like you have wanted to make those

01:15:21   types of changes in the way that I'm spending time with my family. But there is a time where

01:15:28   we would be like, alright, let's, let's, we both want to edit photos, right? So why don't

01:15:32   we just do that now? This is like a joint activity, but we're using our devices in a

01:15:36   solo way. But like, if we're watching TV, I'm not picking up my phone and reading Twitter,

01:15:43   right? Right. Yes, exactly. And it does get way harder. Surely, if these devices are strapped

01:15:49   our faces surely yeah yeah but so here's the other thing right so i how do we interact with them how

01:15:57   do you interact weary baby yeah but like isn't that even worse everyone's just talking to

01:16:04   themselves all the time you know the apple watch has the little scribble keyboard so you can like

01:16:08   route the letters oh god what if you did that but with where your eyes your eyes yeah i mean everyone

01:16:14   would have a migraine instantly so it's not a perfect solution but it's pretty good like you

01:16:19   know you've got to assume that there's some kind of eye tracking in this technology eventually right

01:16:23   got it got to be right like it has to be and again isn't that like a really uncomfortable

01:16:28   thought yeah i don't i don't like very much i don't know where we're gonna go with this it is

01:16:34   a new frontier i really i just i understand like that everybody's doing it i just i i struggle to

01:16:43   to understand if it's really necessary. Like, do we, but do we absolutely... Is this the

01:16:49   old, is this the thing that makes us old men? Maybe. I don't know. See, that's also, that's

01:16:54   also, that's also my, my problem. Like, I have these thoughts and then I think about

01:17:00   these thoughts and I have other thoughts, including am I becoming, you know, a boomer,

01:17:06   as they would say. Like, I don't want to be, you know, the old guy and I'm in my thirties,

01:17:13   like I'm not an old person at least by my standards I don't want to be the old

01:17:18   person with the Mac blog I'm gonna talk about the iPad forever no I don't want

01:17:23   to be that guy but also like glasses like I don't know I'm trying to use my

01:17:29   phone less and you're pitching a device that's how you use your phone less you

01:17:33   know the Apple watch didn't make anyone use their phone less I don't think not

01:17:38   really. No, because it's not a two-handed device. But I also want to say I would totally buy an

01:17:46   Apple VR gaming device, like a dedicated thing, that I want. It's just it's it's the idea that

01:17:56   this is going to replace the phone. Well, because the a mixed reality device is not that different

01:18:02   to any device that you currently have. You are making the decision to use it at that time,

01:18:07   right? You're putting the device on, you're using it for a period of time, you take the device off,

01:18:12   like you pick the device up, you use it for a period of time, you put the device down.

01:18:15   But it is closer to the Apple Watch, right? Like you are taking this device, you're putting it on

01:18:22   your body and you're allowing it to interact with you, right? It's that, but like turned up to 11

01:18:27   because now you're seeing it. It's in your eyes. It is literally shooting this content into your

01:18:36   eyeballs yes right yes it's like yes you can still make a decision but it's very

01:18:45   hard to make a decision when you have content in front of your yeah you know

01:18:49   I think it's like I can decide not to look at my phone I can decide not to

01:18:54   look at my wrist but man my hi look at your eyes what am I supposed to do

01:18:59   Close my eyes? Like, I don't know. Thank you, other doctors. Okay, well, I assume we're only going to talk about this more and more as time goes on, because this certainly seems real at this point.

01:19:10   At least we can take a break now. It's not 2020, right? 2022. So it's not next year.

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01:21:22   and Relay FM.

01:21:23   - Still can't believe I was able to convince them.

01:21:26   - It's maybe the best thing you've ever done.

01:21:30   - Good luck trying to convince them on Ash Earn

01:21:35   for next year.

01:21:36   - Oh yeah. - Sit of granddad.

01:21:39   - That one's gonna be a lot more complicated

01:21:41   and might require some legal documentation.

01:21:44   - Yeah, that's gonna be a real situation.

01:21:47   All right, Federico, you have written about this new iOS app

01:21:50   called Toolbox Pro.

01:21:51   I've been playing with it some.

01:21:53   This thing seems incredible.

01:21:55   What's the deal?

01:21:56   - Okay, so the idea is that this is an app

01:21:58   that you download for free from the App Store.

01:22:01   It's got a $6 in-app purchase.

01:22:04   Most of the features you can use for free,

01:22:05   some of them require the premium purchase.

01:22:09   And it is an app, but it's really a collection

01:22:13   of actions for shortcuts.

01:22:16   So the idea is that with Toolbox you can extend the shortcuts app,

01:22:21   and this is possible thanks to parameters in iOS 13,

01:22:24   the new shortcuts features that allow you to run many of these actions

01:22:28   completely inside shortcuts without ever leaving shortcuts.

01:22:32   You just customize them with parameters.

01:22:35   And it's made by an indie developer, Alex Hay,

01:22:39   and he had this idea of like, thanks to parameters,

01:22:43   it is possible for actions from third-party apps

01:22:48   to effectively become native Shortcuts features.

01:22:52   You don't have to leave the Shortcuts app,

01:22:54   you don't have to use URL schemes or X callback

01:22:58   or that kind of stuff.

01:22:59   And so the idea would be Toolbox takes

01:23:03   a lot of existing system frameworks,

01:23:07   like frameworks that Apple itself makes

01:23:11   that are not yet integrated with Shortcuts,

01:23:14   and Toolbox has actions that

01:23:17   bring those features to Shortcuts.

01:23:20   So stuff like performing OCR on documents or images

01:23:25   or scanning documents with the system document scanner,

01:23:29   or even, and this is quite funny actually,

01:23:32   Shortcuts has reminders integration, but it's limited,

01:23:36   and I believe that Shortcuts has the same reminders actions

01:23:41   that Workflow launched years ago.

01:23:44   Like Apple never updated them.

01:23:46   They didn't update them for iOS 13,

01:23:49   and they even didn't update them for like basic features

01:23:54   that existed before, well before iOS 13,

01:23:57   like marking a reminder as complete

01:24:00   or editing an existing reminder.

01:24:02   Like that's a basic feature.

01:24:04   Workflow didn't have it.

01:24:05   Shortcuts doesn't have it.

01:24:07   Toolbox Pro has better reminders actions

01:24:10   than Apple's own actions.

01:24:11   - How?

01:24:13   - See, that's the thing.

01:24:14   There's a disconnect between the frameworks

01:24:18   and the APIs that Apple makes available to developers

01:24:22   and the actions that you see in shortcuts.

01:24:25   And the idea, like the idea would be

01:24:27   that thanks to parameters,

01:24:28   more teams at Apple can now make proper actions

01:24:33   for their apps.

01:24:34   So in theory, the Notes team, the Reminders team,

01:24:38   they could support all of these features.

01:24:41   They could just go out and use the parameters API

01:24:44   and make new actions, but that hasn't happened yet.

01:24:48   And so this developer said,

01:24:50   "Okay, with the reminders API,"

01:24:54   the framework is called, I believe, EventKit,

01:24:56   I can edit an existing reminder,

01:24:58   I can create a new reminders list,

01:25:01   or I can let you modify reminders,

01:25:07   I'm gonna make it an action.

01:25:09   And Toolbox Pro has better reminders actions than Apple.

01:25:12   But also there's, so there's two main ideas

01:25:15   about Toolbox Pro.

01:25:16   One of them is making better system actions

01:25:21   or new system actions because Apple hasn't released them yet

01:25:25   but also this idea of taking machine learning features

01:25:30   and frameworks like Core ML or Vision.

01:25:35   I had a joke in my iOS 13 review that vision is the hottest API in iOS 13.

01:25:44   It was based on a Saturday Night Live skit.

01:25:49   But really vision does everything.

01:25:50   Vision has OCR, vision has object detection in images, as people detection, animal detection.

01:25:57   And many of these features are available as actions through Toolbox Pro.

01:26:01   So you can detect objects in photos,

01:26:06   and so you can put together shortcuts that do like,

01:26:10   get my latest 50 photos and show me

01:26:13   a list of all the photos that contain pasta or pizza.

01:26:16   Like, you can make a pizza Instagram workflow.

01:26:19   Like, seriously, that gives you a list of the latest food

01:26:23   picks you've taken.

01:26:25   You can have actions that detect areas of interest of an image.

01:26:30   And so in theory you can make like a thumbnail generation script to crop an image where it's

01:26:36   the most interesting according to the machine learning framework.

01:26:40   All of these things are native Apple-made frameworks and features, but ShortCats doesn't

01:26:47   use them yet.

01:26:49   But thanks to parameters, third-party developers can come in and say "I'm gonna take those

01:26:53   features and make them available to users as actions."

01:26:57   Which I think is a genius idea, could be easily sharelocked, of course, but will it though?

01:27:06   And that's sort of my takeaway from the conclusion, like, these are season features, Apple could

01:27:11   make the same actions, make them even better, because they're, you know, it's Apple, they

01:27:15   can use some secret or private APIs, but will they?

01:27:19   Because so far they, like, I guess this is a bigger conversation about like, what's gonna

01:27:25   happen to shortcuts. In iOS 13 we've seen a redesign of shortcuts, they have the new

01:27:30   editor, they have the natural language editor and all that stuff, but there's so many more

01:27:35   power user features that are still not here. And so I gotta wonder, like, the first year

01:27:43   of shortcuts at Apple in iOS 12 we got the rebrand. The second year we got parameters

01:27:50   and the redesign. Next year, third year at Apple, will they finally address all the feature

01:28:00   requests that pro users have been asking for? So like more controls in the editor, more

01:28:05   ways to run shortcuts, what's going to happen next? And so in this landscape it's interesting

01:28:11   to see these utilities like Toolbox Pro, and there's a bunch also coming that are sort

01:28:17   of building an ecosystem around shortcuts, it's definitely something worth keeping an

01:28:21   eye on. But that's basically what Toolbox is doing, is giving shortcuts power users,

01:28:28   or just, you know, folks who use shortcuts a lot, more actions that feel like native

01:28:35   actions, because that's actually what they are. They are native actions made possible

01:28:39   by iOS 13.

01:28:40   I feel kind of confused though, because like...

01:28:44   What does it do? Like, what can it do?

01:28:47   Well, there's a... This is a great question actually.

01:28:51   There's a... When you download the app, there's an examples section.

01:28:56   So you can go in there and there's like dozens of shortcuts made by the developer

01:29:01   that give you an idea.

01:29:03   I focused on four areas in my review.

01:29:07   So the reminders actions are great. You can edit reminders, which is the main feature, I guess.

01:29:14   I made a bunch of shortcuts that let you reschedule multiple reminders at once,

01:29:20   or move reminders between lists, or remove due dates from reminders. You can do all kinds of

01:29:27   modifications to existing reminders. The OCR stuff is also great. You can scan documents,

01:29:36   or extract text from images, from documents.

01:29:40   These are things that people download dedicated apps for on the App Store.

01:29:46   Now you can build a shortcut for that with Toolbox.

01:29:50   And they also, like the app has a lot of, and this is why in the article I said this is for power users,

01:29:57   it's got a lot of sort of quality of life improvements.

01:30:00   If you use shortcuts a lot, it's got all these actions that

01:30:04   Remove a lot of friction from building shortcuts. So like it's got actions to create rich menus

01:30:10   Which are super nice to look at they got like you you can have a menu like a list of options

01:30:15   That it's not just a plain list of text. You can have icons

01:30:20   Based on SF symbols you can have colors you can have subtitles

01:30:24   you have actions to

01:30:27   modify dictionaries you have actions to

01:30:34   not having to write regular expressions. So like if you want to do more advanced find and replace in shortcuts

01:30:41   eventually you gotta use Rejects if you just use the Apple actions and

01:30:46   Toolbox gives you a lot of options that are just visual

01:30:50   that allow you to do a lot of like trimming text or matching text between certain words

01:30:57   like stuff that you would normally have to write regular expressions for

01:31:02   they're just provided as a single step.

01:31:05   It's taking some of the more complicated things that shortcuts can do

01:31:11   and basically wrapping them up into actions that somebody like me can just drop into a shortcut

01:31:18   to cut out a bunch of work.

01:31:20   Yes.

01:31:20   Okay.

01:31:22   Exactly.

01:31:23   That makes more sense.

01:31:23   Yes.

01:31:24   And also it's got features, as I mentioned on Mac stories,

01:31:31   stuff like global variables. So the idea that you can create your own database of things,

01:31:41   like in shortcuts usually a variable only lasts as long as you're running a shortcut,

01:31:48   and instead Toolbox lets you create global variables that persist across multiple shortcuts

01:31:54   that are synced with iCloud across all of your devices. And so I built, for example,

01:32:00   shortcut that lets me track the video games that I'm playing. It's very nice. It's just

01:32:07   this idea of you don't have to create your own JSON database, you know, stuff that I've

01:32:15   been doing manually in shortcuts, Toolbox gives you a native visual option that's super

01:32:21   nice to look at and it's definitely for public users. Like if you just use shortcuts casually

01:32:27   and you never create shortcuts, this is not for you.

01:32:30   But if you spend a lot of time in shortcuts,

01:32:32   either creating shortcuts or running them,

01:32:34   you probably have a use for this.

01:32:36   And if anything, I would suggest that people check it out,

01:32:40   because it's free.

01:32:42   Many of the actions are free,

01:32:43   and I believe what I think is the most impressive action

01:32:47   of all, the preview action, is free to use.

01:32:51   And the preview action is kind of wild.

01:32:52   It lets you preview content.

01:32:55   It's like fancy quick look.

01:32:57   you could call it. It lets you preview multiple things at once. So you can send the text and an

01:33:04   image and a link together, and it'll figure it out, and it'll show you all items on a single page.

01:33:10   And what is wild about this is that on the user's end, it looks sort of like Markdown. It's got a

01:33:17   simple syntax. You can have bigger text or smaller text or images and links. But actually, it is

01:33:26   basically a wrapper for SwiftUI. So behind the scenes, the custom preview is all based on SwiftUI,

01:33:34   and so it's responsive by default, it supports dark mode by default, and it's this idea that—I

01:33:41   think Jason Snell mentioned this before, an upgrade a few weeks ago—the idea of like,

01:33:46   maybe in the future you will be able to actually run SwiftUI code in shortcuts and build your own

01:33:52   little interfaces. And this is sort of like that, but it goes through Toolbox. Really,

01:33:58   it's got a bunch of things for power users. If you use shortcuts a lot, you should check

01:34:01   it out. This is my takeaway. It's very fascinating.

01:34:05   >> It reminds me a little bit of editorial. Like, what you're showing in the review, like,

01:34:11   those pages you were talking about where it shows you these, like, kind of bare bonesy

01:34:17   pages where it's got a bunch of links. Like, it just reminds me of the way that you used

01:34:20   to do all those crazy things with editorial where you look at apps or pages or whatever.

01:34:24   It reminds me of that.

01:34:27   Right.

01:34:28   Very interesting.

01:34:29   Yeah.

01:34:30   And do you think that it's safe to really get wrapped up in this app?

01:34:34   I mean, I guess if Apple sure locked some of the features, that's fine.

01:34:39   But this sort of thing is kosher with how Apple wants to operate?

01:34:44   So that's also a great question.

01:34:47   I think it should be safe.

01:34:49   not using any private APIs, which is also the the main selling point. It's all based on the parameter

01:34:56   framework that's open to developers. Everybody can use it. Personally speaking, I have made

01:35:05   10 shortcuts for the site that you can download today based on Toolbox Pro. There's seven more

01:35:12   advanced ones that I will be releasing for club members this Friday, but I will try for,

01:35:21   because I run the Mac Stories Shortcuts Archive, I will try not to use Toolbox Pro actions

01:35:29   all the time, because you know what my stance on dependencies is? Like in general, I try

01:35:36   to keep my, in this case, like my code as clean as possible, like, I don't want to be

01:35:41   in a situation where all the shortcuts that you find on Mac stories require Toolbox Pro.

01:35:47   So in this case, I had to make them because I'm reviewing the app. But I plan on keeping,

01:35:53   like, when I resume my regular shortcuts coverage, I will not include Toolbox Pro actions. I

01:36:01   will use them for, like, for personal use, but the shortcuts that you find on Mac stories

01:36:07   will not require the app because I don't like the idea of these shortcuts. As you said,

01:36:12   Stephen, maybe someday becoming outdated because maybe the developer doesn't maintain toolbox

01:36:18   anymore.

01:36:19   Yeah, I mean this sort of thing seems right for Apple accidentally kicking it out of the

01:36:22   app store later. Always had that fear with nerdy tools. Maybe that's unfounded. And I'm

01:36:28   certainly not saying anything about the developer.

01:36:30   No, no, I think you have a point.

01:36:31   It's always a scary thing.

01:36:34   I think that does it for this week.

01:36:36   If you want to find show notes for all the stuff

01:36:39   we spoke about, head on over to the website,

01:36:41   relay.fm/connected/269.

01:36:44   While you're there, you can get in touch with feedback

01:36:46   or follow up via email, or of course,

01:36:48   you can send that in on Twitter.

01:36:49   You can find Myke on Twitter as I-M-Y-K-E.

01:36:53   Myke is the co-host of a bunch of other shows

01:36:55   here on Relay FM.

01:36:57   It's in the show notes.

01:36:58   Go check out Upgrade.

01:37:00   That interview is spectacular.

01:37:02   You guys really did a good job.

01:37:03   Congratulations on that.

01:37:04   You should go, go check that out if you haven't.

01:37:06   You can find Federico on Twitter as Vitici, V-I-T-I-C-C-I,

01:37:11   and his writing, of course, at maxstories.net.

01:37:14   You mentioned the club,

01:37:15   you guys put a lot of awesome stuff in there,

01:37:17   so if you're not a club member over at Max Stories,

01:37:20   you should go find out more about that.

01:37:22   You can find me on Twitter as ismh,

01:37:25   and my writing over at 512pixels.net.

01:37:28   I'd like to thank our sponsors this week,

01:37:31   Pingdom, Ahrefs, and Eero.

01:37:33   And until next time guys, say goodbye.

01:37:35   - Adios, that's you.

01:37:36   - Cheerio.