221: Speak the Unspeakable Name


00:00:00   (upbeat music)

00:00:02   Hello and welcome to Connected, episode 221.

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

00:00:14   Away, Pingdom, and Luna Display.

00:00:17   I'm your host, Steven Hackett, and I am joined

00:00:19   by my two very handsome, very intelligent co-hosts.

00:00:23   I have Myke Hurley, how are you?

00:00:24   - Oh, hi.

00:00:26   - Welcome back. - Thank you.

00:00:28   And we have the king of the Mac Mini, the ruler of the dock, Mr. Federico Vittucci.

00:00:34   Hi, I like these new titles that you gave me.

00:00:37   I wanted a third one, but I couldn't think fast enough for a third one.

00:00:41   Okay, well.

00:00:42   The Admiral of Automator.

00:00:44   Okay, Admiral, I like that. That's a good word.

00:00:47   Mmm, I like that a lot.

00:00:48   You know English.

00:00:48   Yeah, that's good.

00:00:49   Yeah.

00:00:50   Admiral Vittucci.

00:00:52   Okay, I can go with that. I can go with that.

00:00:55   Myke, are you back on the show for real?

00:00:58   Like you...

00:00:59   Nah.

00:01:00   You didn't leave the show.

00:01:01   No, I'm just a guest.

00:01:02   You're not, you're not, you're just a guest.

00:01:04   Just a guest, yeah.

00:01:05   Okay.

00:01:06   Yeah, I'm just a guest this time.

00:01:07   You know, because on this program we talk about the Macintosh and I don't know, you

00:01:13   kind of feel out of place.

00:01:14   No, it's cool, I bought one.

00:01:15   I bought a Macintosh today.

00:01:18   You bought a Macintosh computer today?

00:01:19   Yeah, I bought a Mac Mini.

00:01:20   Which, did you, oh.

00:01:21   Yeah.

00:01:22   So I'm not a performer.

00:01:23   Okay.

00:01:24   No, I wanted to be in the core club like you guys, so I bought a Mac Mini as well.

00:01:27   Okay, so now we can talk about the Mac Mini. Let's talk about the Mac Mini, Myke. What's

00:01:31   your favorite feature of the Mac Mini?

00:01:32   It hasn't come yet. It's on the way. My favorite feature so far is how many boxes you have

00:01:38   to tick to try and order one, even though you're not 100% sure what any of that stuff

00:01:44   really honestly means. Like, do I want 32 gigabytes of RAM or 64? Like, I don't know.

00:01:50   So to save us all some email, what did you order?

00:01:54   Oh, oh, let me see. Who knows?

00:01:57   You wanna find it and we'll come back to it in a second?

00:01:59   iPod Touch, got one of those.

00:02:01   Okay, good.

00:02:02   I got a 3.2 gigahertz, six core,

00:02:07   eighth generation Intel Core i7 turbo boost

00:02:09   up to 4.6 gigahertz.

00:02:11   Ooh, boy, that's a big one.

00:02:14   That's a lot.

00:02:15   That's definitely more complicated than A12X.

00:02:18   It's just as a thing to remember.

00:02:21   I got the 32 gigabyte 266 megahertz DDR4.

00:02:25   Got one of those.

00:02:26   I got the Intel UHD Graphics 630,

00:02:32   which is way better than the 620, so I'm pleased.

00:02:34   - And it's the only option on the Mac Mini.

00:02:37   - No, it's good, it's good, it's good.

00:02:38   I wrote to Tim and he made sure I got the right one.

00:02:41   I got a one terabyte SSD storage.

00:02:44   And I also got a 10 gigabit ethernet

00:02:48   an nBaseT Ethernet with support for 1GB, 2.5GB, 5GB, and 10GB Ethernet using the RJ-45 connector.

00:02:55   Oh good. You don't want the RJ-44, that's last year's.

00:03:02   I like the requirement to list 1GB, 2.5GB, 5GB, and 10GB. I like that that needs to...

00:03:08   Is there any others?

00:03:10   You didn't get 7, 7 gigabyte.

00:03:12   What if I only need 7?

00:03:14   Also it's gigabit, but that's fine.

00:03:16   Leave me alone. What if I need a seven now? Why wouldn't they give why do I get one and two point five but not seven?

00:03:22   Yeah, it's complicated. It's ridiculous

00:03:24   And I also got an accessory kit, which I don't know what that means like a hat. What is that?

00:03:29   I don't know

00:03:32   It just says like accessory kit. I don't know what that is. Like what accessories does the Mac Mini come with you know, Federico

00:03:39   You joke but in my 20th anniversary Mac, I bought a couple years ago

00:03:43   it came with all that stuff and you got both a pen and a pencil in this little like leather sleeve and you got a

00:03:48   remote and

00:03:50   With the Mac mini it just means you get paperwork in a power cable. So congrats to the power cable Myke

00:03:55   Why do they call it an accessory? Yes, I'm happy together like I mean, it's not like we just call it stuff

00:04:02   No, but like they don't I don't think that they need to tell me I'm gonna get a power cable

00:04:06   Like I I don't know modern Apple

00:04:10   You want to be clear on that stuff. 30 pin. Yeah, so I got one of those

00:04:14   I started a note in Apple Notes today with like called Mac mini server

00:04:18   And I've written down a couple of things that I might want to try like why am I getting this right? Okay, so okay

00:04:24   Storage. Such as? Storage. Yes. Like it's all question marks right now like do I want to store project files on it?

00:04:30   I don't know. And then I got like Plex and then the next bullet is how do I set that up?

00:04:35   up so that's a question mark and there's Casey Liss there he is he somehow has found out and I'm

00:04:41   sure at this very moment has sent me a message I put in just a link to last week's episode

00:04:46   of this show so I'll listen to all of that again and all of the insane things that Federico was

00:04:53   doing with Apple scripts homebridge which is part of it right like so I can I don't know I don't

00:04:58   even know what I would do with that you can bridge your home yep yeah sponsor but lunar display I've

00:05:04   I got a USB-C lunar display that I'm going to use.

00:05:06   And then I started writing down, like, what are some actual tasks that I could

00:05:11   use? So like, for example, I was going to I was I did an episode of subnet a

00:05:15   couple of weeks ago. I stood in for you and I was thinking, oh, I know what

00:05:19   I'll do. I'll edit this on my iPad.

00:05:21   Right. I'll record and edit this on my iPad because this is this is the thing

00:05:25   that the kids do today.

00:05:26   But then I was like, I do some preprocessing of audio files in Adobe

00:05:30   audition and I don't know how to get those results in anything else so I

00:05:36   would have had to have pre-processed them on my Mac and then by the time that

00:05:41   I did that I just decided to do it all on my Mac but with a Mac Mini and

00:05:45   something like the Luna display I could just do all of that stuff on the Mac

00:05:49   right like I could record it on iOS put it in Dropbox process it in an audition

00:05:53   and then just edit it on my iPad. So you're gonna run this Mac Mini

00:05:58   headless? Yes, I am. Okay, I have a, I'm going to send you a link to this. I'm

00:06:04   googling now. You want a, basically a headless HDMI adapter or the Mac mini

00:06:12   will, or Mac OS will basically keep the resolution super low, which is really

00:06:19   dumb. And so you want this thing, it's $8 on Amazon Prime. I'm putting it in the

00:06:24   chat room so you can see it and put it in the show notes. This comes via our

00:06:28   friends at Mac Stadium so they recommend this. It basically tricks your Mac into

00:06:34   running at 1080 which make it a little bit easier on the Luna display as well.

00:06:37   You should buy this and just plug it into the HDMI port. It seems weird. But

00:06:41   you know it is it is what it is. But if you're going to use remote desktop

00:06:45   access this is a handy thing to have. Okay let me see if we have it on in the UK

00:06:49   Amazon. Yep, always a lot more expensive but what you gonna do? Yeah, what can you do?

00:06:57   Can't do anything about that. It's 20 pounds. So there's that. Yeah. So that's

00:07:05   that's your Mac Mini. Please let us know when it gets in. We're very excited for

00:07:08   you. Like a special report. We'll do an episode immediately. Yeah, we'll just

00:07:17   do an immediate bonus episode as you unbox it.

00:07:20   Myke, while we're talking to you about hardware, I know you have spent some time with the iPhone

00:07:26   XR.

00:07:27   How is that going?

00:07:28   Yeah, it's good.

00:07:29   I would say I haven't been spending an extended time with it.

00:07:33   Like I spent a bunch of time with it when I got it and I play around with it every now

00:07:36   and then.

00:07:37   And I think, you know, the XR, I mean, this isn't new to anybody really, but I think that

00:07:41   it is a very, very solid phone.

00:07:44   I don't know how actually popular this thing is.

00:07:51   There are a lot of people that I think right now are trying to say that it's not popular.

00:07:56   I think Apple is trying to say that it's their best selling, right?

00:07:59   Like it seems like there's a lot of stuff going on about this thing right now.

00:08:03   Aren't they giving like, they're doing some kind of crazy like $300 off promotion if you

00:08:08   bring in an old phone, right?

00:08:10   If you bring in like a 7 or 7 Plus I think.

00:08:12   Yeah, I mean doesn't that seem weird?

00:08:14   Yeah, it does. I think there's something to the story about the XR. There's something going on.

00:08:19   You know, next time they announce their sales, you know, unit sales, then we'll know.

00:08:24   Oh.

00:08:25   Yeah.

00:08:26   They don't do that anymore, do they?

00:08:27   But like it's right there on the homepage, like at the very top. Limited time iPhone XR from $449.

00:08:35   But anyway, whatever the reason is, I think the XR is a great phone. I love the color of it, right?

00:08:41   of it, right? Like I got the coral one and I love it. And in my usage of it, everything

00:08:46   that you think would be a downside, it turns out is mostly fine, right? Like the screen

00:08:52   is incredible. The bezels you, once you've used it from one in an hour, like in my opinion,

00:08:57   like I don't notice that the bezels are thicker. I definitely noticed that it is, the phone

00:09:03   overall is thicker. Like I can feel that, especially if you put a case on it, right?

00:09:09   that makes it much bigger. But I think it is great and the dual purpose of buying this

00:09:16   one was so I could kind of just get to understand it. The second is it's going to my mum for

00:09:20   Christmas so she's going to be getting my coral iPhone XR this Christmas with the clear

00:09:26   case that finally Apple has given me the point that I wanted and they have delivered to the

00:09:32   world the clear case.

00:09:34   Are you buying one?

00:09:36   I will buy one, yeah.

00:09:38   Okay.

00:09:39   I think because I stand by the fact that like if you're going to buy a phone that's in a

00:09:44   color like like a big bright color like this you want to show it off again I still say

00:09:48   I wish they made a clear case for the tennis because I have a gold phone I love the color

00:09:54   of but I'm too scared to I'm too much of a chicken to not to not have a case on it so

00:10:01   nothing bad has ever happened to from yeah carrying a phone without a case that true

00:10:07   Someone asked me about my last two phones.

00:10:09   Yeah, how is this one doing?

00:10:10   Have you dropped it?

00:10:11   Have you broken it?

00:10:12   I've not dropped it.

00:10:13   It definitely has some scratches on the screen.

00:10:15   I think from the little brass nubbin on my jeans, just like my iPhone 10 had, but it's

00:10:20   fine otherwise.

00:10:21   I'll tell you, like a couple of days ago, my phone took a fall that would have destroyed

00:10:26   it if I didn't have a case on it.

00:10:27   Like screened down onto marble floor.

00:10:30   Right?

00:10:31   From my standing height.

00:10:32   That would have killed us by anything.

00:10:33   Like that would have destroyed it.

00:10:34   And if I wouldn't have had that case on it,

00:10:36   that phone would be dead now.

00:10:38   - The Apple case looks exactly

00:10:40   how you would expect it to look, right?

00:10:41   It's clear plastic.

00:10:42   There's a funny thing on the,

00:10:43   at least right now on Apple's store online,

00:10:46   that they have the product imagery.

00:10:48   There's two product red phones.

00:10:49   Like they just, I don't know what happened there.

00:10:52   Some sort of data entry issue.

00:10:53   It seems like if you want a clear plastic case,

00:10:56   there are much cheaper options.

00:10:57   This thing is 40 bucks.

00:10:59   But if you want a, I guess a first party case,

00:11:01   this is now out there for you.

00:11:04   It's really weird, I was looking at the homepage

00:11:06   that Myke said, there's actually a whole section

00:11:09   that says limited time, iPhone XR.

00:11:12   I've never seen Apple do this kind of--

00:11:14   - You see, it's so strange to see, isn't it?

00:11:16   - It's very weird, it looks like any e-commerce website

00:11:21   on the internet, it's not Apple at all, limited time.

00:11:28   It's like an offer, Apple doesn't do offers.

00:11:29   - Yeah, and there's an asterisk by the number,

00:11:32   and I know I know why it's there, right?

00:11:34   But it's still kind of it all just seems really strange.

00:11:36   And it might be nothing, right?

00:11:38   Like it might just be whatever they're just doing it.

00:11:41   It's like a holiday promotion.

00:11:43   But it's it's still like just a strange thing.

00:11:45   But I will tell you, right?

00:11:47   Like if you have like an iPhone seven or something

00:11:51   or maybe an iPhone, maybe even an iPhone eight,

00:11:54   getting one of these for four hundred and fifty dollars.

00:11:57   That is a great deal.

00:11:58   Like that is a very, very good deal.

00:12:01   So, but it's still strange to see Apple do a very, very good deal.

00:12:06   Right? Like it's just like a weird thing to say, especially when you look at like their unforgettable holiday event, which was just like a back storeroom clean out.

00:12:15   Did you saw that right? Like their Thanksgiving stuff.

00:12:17   It was like a bunch of old phones and iPads and old Macs.

00:12:20   It was like really weird.

00:12:22   Like there was like, oh, why don't you buy the 10.5 inch iPad or why don't you buy this iPhone 7?

00:12:28   Like here's our incredible holiday event.

00:12:29   Like it was not a great holiday event.

00:12:32   So it just seems strange for them to then do something like this,

00:12:36   but probably to the benefit of many people. Right.

00:12:39   Like I can imagine there being more iPhone 10 hours under the Christmas tree

00:12:43   this way.

00:12:44   You know, I wasn't supposed to say anything,

00:12:47   but I guess it's past now, so I can for that that Black Friday

00:12:51   Thanksgiving thing when they had a bunch of older devices for sale, they actually

00:12:55   they actually came to me.

00:12:57   And then we need some iBooks.

00:12:59   We need some iBooks.

00:13:02   And if you have like a 3GS or two, that'd be great.

00:13:06   I did not have a white iPhone 4, but no one did, so it's okay.

00:13:11   So I feel I can now say that I'm proud to have been part of Apple's Black Friday specials.

00:13:16   It's a shame I didn't see those.

00:13:17   Those must have gone really quickly.

00:13:19   They did.

00:13:20   They even have it like on the main iPhone page, like apple.com/iphone.

00:13:24   Get up to $500 for your iPhone.

00:13:26   in your iPhone and get credit towards a new one. And get extra credit for select iPhone

00:13:31   models. That's what they're doing right now. So it's even more than the regular give back.

00:13:35   They're boosting it to... Hmm. It's strange. Too strange. Do you know what's not strange?

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00:15:54   So MKBHD broke the internet a couple of days ago with the video called the blind smartphone camera test.

00:16:03   So did you guys see this? He was putting up voting on Instagram and Twitter.

00:16:06   Did you both participate?

00:16:08   Yep.

00:16:09   Only some of them, I didn't keep up with the entire thing.

00:16:14   So I was as well.

00:16:15   So he was basically, he took like 16 phones and took pictures of all of them and then

00:16:21   basically allowed people to vote on Twitter and on Instagram for which photo looked the

00:16:25   best and then made a video about his findings and it is absolutely nothing that you would

00:16:34   ever expect it to be.

00:16:35   It's wild.

00:16:36   The winner ended up being the Huawei Mate 20.

00:16:40   No, the yeah, the Mate 20 Pro.

00:16:45   Mate 20 Pro, that's it.

00:16:46   Having beat out the Xiaomi Pocophone, that was the final.

00:16:50   It was the iPhone XS, the iPhone X and the Pixel 3 all got beat in their first round.

00:16:56   The iPhone XS got beat by a BlackBerry.

00:16:59   Like it was bonkers.

00:17:01   it was really, really surprising and I think it led to some really interesting kind of

00:17:07   conclusions about the way that people consume images on their phones because effectively,

00:17:16   as Marques says in his video, which you should watch, it's really nicely done,

00:17:24   effectively what one was which image was the brightest which had the most contrast.

00:17:30   But like that that was all the winning factor really was because of compression on images

00:17:37   and also just because you don't really and I saw this all like people saying that you

00:17:41   don't know what the subject actually looked like. So if it's just brighter then great

00:17:46   you can that's just going to be the image that most people tend to gravitate towards.

00:17:50   Yeah, and even though people usually cannot separate like what is exposure, what is contrast,

00:17:58   they know what they like. They have like, we as humans, we like our pictures to be in

00:18:04   a certain way because they're just nicer to look at. And I think this was a fun project

00:18:10   and really fascinating to see the results because it really there's the takeaway here

00:18:15   is that when it comes to posting on social media, there are different factors at play

00:18:24   on what makes a good picture, because there's of course compression involved, there's some

00:18:30   image artifacts, but really, when you're sharing with tons of people, a sharable photo, a nice

00:18:42   shareable photo does not necessarily mean that it's a high fidelity photo that respects

00:18:49   all of the photographic rules, if that makes sense. Like, nice pictures for Instagram and

00:18:57   Twitter are not necessarily perfect, but people can still like them better than a super accurate

00:19:04   photo taken on a XS, if that makes sense.

00:19:07   Yeah, and it I think it's interesting

00:19:11   I think it's funny when you see something like this because it's like this wasn't what he was attempting to do

00:19:16   Like when he started this project, you know, it was like, oh great

00:19:20   Let's see whether people like the pixel or the iPhone 10 most right in a blind test

00:19:25   But what it ended up being was these two phones that are mostly disregarded that were battling it out for the win

00:19:31   Like it's such an interesting result

00:19:33   but as you say like it

00:19:36   It shows a little bit about what people gravitate towards

00:19:39   It's just really interesting. I just find the whole thing really interesting. Like I don't I don't really I don't have my own personal like

00:19:46   mind-blowing takeaway from it

00:19:48   But I think it it just says it says something and I'm not 100% sure what that is, right?

00:19:54   Like what would it be like if I was looking at those phone of those images in full resolution?

00:19:59   Would I change my mind? Honestly, I don't know if I would.

00:20:03   What I think is interesting is that if you recall what happened with

00:20:07   beautygate and the iPhone XS

00:20:10   there's a fascinating difference when

00:20:14   changes to a photo are to the camera are forced upon you by the manufacturer

00:20:21   versus a photo that is not accurate, but you took it

00:20:27   Like you made the decision to took that photo because if you look at those photos that that MKBHD posted

00:20:34   Some of them are not accurate pictures

00:20:38   They you know, they're either overexposed or they're lacking details in the background

00:20:44   But it's not a bug like he took those photos so

00:20:51   Normally what I'm trying to say is that people apply things like beauty filters or even if you look at you know

00:20:57   I follow a bunch of like photographers like professional photographers on Instagram and they all

00:21:02   Process their photos in VSCO right like and add these like wild color filters and stuff to them to make them look more visually impressive

00:21:10   So I think it's interesting that people are okay with these kinds of filters like beauty filters or smoothing filters

00:21:17   when they decide to use them.

00:21:20   But if they're on by default, they get upset.

00:21:23   And it's a beauty gate.

00:21:24   I think it's fascinating, like a human behavior.

00:21:26   It's very, very fascinating.

00:21:27   - Yeah, like there's a reason that there are a million

00:21:30   of these smoothing filters in Instagram and in Snapchat,

00:21:34   right, like in the face stuff,

00:21:36   because people wanna use them all the time.

00:21:38   But if the camera's doing it for them,

00:21:40   whether intended or not, now it's like, how dare you?

00:21:46   Yeah, super interesting.

00:21:47   And I guess we should all be using the Huawei Mate 20 Pro now.

00:21:54   Oh yeah, I switched already.

00:21:57   Didn't I tell you guys?

00:21:58   Mac stories is no more.

00:22:00   Huawei stories.

00:22:01   No, no, Mate stories.

00:22:03   Mate stories, okay.

00:22:04   Yes, that's what I'm going for.

00:22:07   I love it.

00:22:09   Also I've fired all of my employees and I'm just hiring British people because of the

00:22:15   it fits better. Oh interesting. That wasn't... oh my god I just got an ad for the Huawei

00:22:20   Mate 20 Pro on MacRumors. I just opened up the next link and I have an ad right there.

00:22:28   It says welcome to higher intelligence. Chrome is listening to you. Oh man I need to unplug

00:22:34   all of my devices now. See you later guys. This is it for me. Time to change your house.

00:22:39   This is really interesting because we live in a world where like most photos are shot

00:22:44   and then shared on a smartphone and then never escape past that.

00:22:48   Right? I would imagine that if he had done a video where he also voted on like prints of some sort,

00:22:55   that the, you know, the more traditional smartphones like the iPhone and the Pixel

00:23:00   would do better there. Or even if it was like he showed those images in a video as opposed to like

00:23:06   on Twitter. Non-compressed. Yeah. Non-compressed. But I mean, think about the pictures like the

00:23:10   three of us take. Where do we share them? Like Instagram or Twitter, right? Like, they're going

00:23:15   to get compressed to kingdom come, and in that world, what his findings ended up being make a

00:23:23   lot of sense. It's surprising initially, but he did a really good job explaining it, and I totally

00:23:27   see why it ended up being the way that it was. In fact, as he was going through the examples talking

00:23:31   about them, as he was talking about them, I was voting against the phone in my own pocket. I was

00:23:35   voting against the Pixel. It's like, yeah, this does look better in this context.

00:23:39   Like I remember like the images that I voted for

00:23:43   They were all brighter

00:23:45   They were all had more colors in because that tends to be what I like most humans like and it's just a funny thing

00:23:52   I don't know if I said this on the show before but I I sort of have a confession to make I

00:23:57   Don't always like how

00:24:01   pictures from the iPhone XS look

00:24:04   Same. Oh, really?

00:24:06   I think older iPhones used to be punchier, used to produce...

00:24:12   I don't know, everything just looks a bit flat to me with the XS, unless I have really, really good lighting or

00:24:19   I'm at the park and it's super sunny.

00:24:22   Like, I prefer most of the pictures that I took on the iPhone X or the iPhone 7 even.

00:24:33   they were more contrasty, more, you know, they had more punch than

00:24:38   what I normally shot on the, shoot on the iPhone XS.

00:24:43   And I don't know what I'm doing wrong. I tried with

00:24:46   Smart HDR enabled and disabled.

00:24:49   It just, there's something that the software is doing, and I think Nilay Patel was also

00:24:55   complaining about this a few months ago. And I'm starting to see it now, because whenever I look at pictures from the Pixel 3,

00:25:02   for example, I'm like, yeah, that picture has contrast, has really good lighting,

00:25:06   as you know, it packs a punch.

00:25:07   It's got something.

00:25:09   It's got that kick right in the image that those colors and that contrast

00:25:13   and the iPhone XS, it always looks I mean, it can take beautiful pictures,

00:25:17   but it happens less frequently than it used to happen before.

00:25:21   And I'm not trying to say that I'm going to switch to the Google Pixel

00:25:25   and stuff like that, but

00:25:28   it just whatever Apple did with the software,

00:25:32   I don't think I'm a hundred percent happy with it because it's it's in trying to to

00:25:38   Cast detail on every single point of the photo and this is especially true with smart HDR

00:25:45   It makes everything a bit too flat and a bit too soft and a bit too

00:25:49   Plasticy if that makes sense, it makes a ton of sense. I agree with you

00:25:54   In fact, I have turned off smart HDR on my tennis max

00:25:57   I don't like the way especially the outdoor photos look hmm. I should try again with HDR off. Yeah, yeah

00:26:04   I've got it off and it still

00:26:06   does stuff right, but it's it's dialed back some and

00:26:10   It it looks more like the older iPhones

00:26:13   But even now with the setting off some of those outdoor photos like look to

00:26:18   HD re from I think that I think that's what you're seeing and what you don't like as well

00:26:23   It's like okay like the sky should not be blue in this picture and like if you like that. That's fine

00:26:28   I don't like it. I want it to be

00:26:30   More accurate and so I've I feel the same way you do absolutely yeah, it's very random

00:26:35   There's not like a like a like a thing that I can say it always does this

00:26:40   But every once in a while and actually every few days. I take a picture like it's

00:26:46   Flat it's like the colors are muted

00:26:49   and it doesn't have that kind of contrast that I remember when I took the picture.

00:26:55   That said, I can take some beautiful pictures with the XS, especially when I'm in direct sunlight and I'm at the park.

00:27:02   There's tons of vivid colors.

00:27:04   And in that situation, it takes some great shots.

00:27:10   But it's something that I noticed, and especially when looking at the reviews for the Pixel 3 and looking at image comparisons.

00:27:16   Like, when The Verge did the photo comparisons between the XS and the Pixel 3,

00:27:22   I tend to prefer every single photo of the Pixel 3 version.

00:27:28   It just looks better to me.

00:27:30   Alright, so, a bunch of stuff here.

00:27:33   So, I would say that I prefer the Google Pixel 95% of the time.

00:27:42   At some point we will talk about my Pixel 3. At some point we will get to it.

00:27:50   Not today. Not today. At some point we need to get to it.

00:27:53   And I even have a comparison album that I put together. We will get to this at some point.

00:27:57   But I will say that I disagree with both of you personally about the iPhone's camera.

00:28:07   I would say that I have not noticed like how you two describe like the flat nature of images.

00:28:13   Like I just I have not seen that and like I'm looking at images that I've taken over the last

00:28:18   week and I don't really look at any of them and be like oh that doesn't look right. But the thing is

00:28:24   with smart HDR I have I take more images now where I go oh wow I love that. So for whatever reason

00:28:32   my tastes, right, align with what Smart HDR is doing.

00:28:37   Like I like the big, bold, blue skies and all that.

00:28:43   You know, like I like all of that stuff.

00:28:45   It looks pleasing to me.

00:28:47   So, you know, I'm not in any way saying

00:28:51   that I think like you're wrong,

00:28:53   but because it's all the personal tasting,

00:28:57   but I would just say that for me personally,

00:28:59   I much prefer the smart HDR stuff, but always prefer the Pixel 3, pretty much, as to what

00:29:07   it can do.

00:29:11   My guess is Federica and I are in the minority, actually.

00:29:13   I don't know.

00:29:15   It's difficult to tell, right?

00:29:16   Like how would we even know that?

00:29:21   But I think that this is only a thing that you can know after a while, and I think that

00:29:28   I remain really happy with the new camera stuff.

00:29:32   I'm also using portrait mode more and more.

00:29:35   Oh, yeah, that I am as well. Yeah.

00:29:37   It's getting so much better,

00:29:39   especially for like images shared on Instagram, for example.

00:29:43   Like if I am ever taking I don't take a lot of selfies, right?

00:29:46   But like if I ever do now, I always take at least one portrait mode image as well.

00:29:53   Because again, it's like if you're sharing it on Instagram or whatever,

00:29:58   like it ends up looking pretty good for Instagram, you know?

00:30:01   Mm hmm. So but the pixel still better at that as well.

00:30:06   All right. We'll talk about it, Myke.

00:30:07   Don't worry. I will not forget.

00:30:10   Because I want to.

00:30:10   We just we just haven't we just haven't gotten to it, but we will.

00:30:14   We will. We have some breaking news. Oh, dear.

00:30:17   Can someone do a breaking news sound effect?

00:30:19   Is that the sound of breaking news?

00:30:22   That's a terrible sound.

00:30:24   Yes. OK.

00:30:26   That sounds like news is broken.

00:30:28   Breaking news.

00:30:28   Okay.

00:30:29   Yeah, there you go.

00:30:29   They send that when it happens.

00:30:31   IOS landmark release or release.

00:30:34   It would tell our children about iOS 12.1.1 is out.

00:30:39   It does some things including notification preview now uses

00:30:44   haptic touch on the iPhone.

00:30:45   10 are they still even adding haptics to things as they go better dual SIM and

00:30:51   eSIM support, live photo capture during one-to-one FaceTime calls, and perhaps the biggest thing,

00:31:00   you can now flip between the rear and front-facing camera during a FaceTime call with one tap

00:31:05   like you used to be able to do, and they put it behind a menu, which was super dumb, and

00:31:10   now they have fixed that.

00:31:11   A couple of days ago, I had to listen to a friend explain to a family member how to do

00:31:15   it, and it said, "You will hang up the call, but that's okay."

00:31:18   And it was like, yes, you will hang up the call.

00:31:22   Because when you go into that menu, you have to get rid of the menu.

00:31:25   And the only way to get rid of the menu that seems logical is the big red X button.

00:31:29   But no, that hangs up the call.

00:31:31   So I'm very pleased that they have added this feature because I'm sure that it has been

00:31:36   driving people berserk, right?

00:31:40   Because I would assume that probably the biggest use of FaceTime is calls between family members

00:31:45   of varying ages and locations.

00:31:48   And any change to the UI in an application like that is going to ruin everything for

00:31:52   everyone.

00:31:53   Right?

00:31:54   Like, if you make a big change, like, "Oh, now this button that you use is hidden,"

00:31:57   everyone's going to get that wrong.

00:31:58   No one's going to know what they're doing, right?

00:32:00   So I'm pleased that they put this back in again, because it was much needed.

00:32:04   Yeah, I don't know why they changed it.

00:32:08   So that's all good news.

00:32:10   I have been burned by this on a FaceTime call with my family.

00:32:15   Exactly what you said happened.

00:32:17   One of my kids tried swapping around, they just hung up on me.

00:32:19   I also have, sorry guys, some breaking news.

00:32:23   Woah!

00:32:24   Shortcuts 2.1.2 is out on the app store.

00:32:32   There's a whole list of bug fixes here.

00:32:35   Some of which, some of which may have been, you know, some of those bugs were caused by

00:32:40   yours truly, but I will not go into detail here.

00:32:45   I'm not saying that I somehow broke shortcuts, but, you know, it's a story for another time.

00:32:50   It has been prophesized that one may.

00:32:53   It has been brought to my attention that some of my shortcuts were causing issues.

00:33:00   Performance improvements all around the app.

00:33:03   So the widget will no longer crash if you have one of my base 64 shortcuts in the widget.

00:33:13   iCloud sync improvements, let's see, I'm looking at release notes.

00:33:17   I have a complaint, I have a complaint about the release notes.

00:33:21   In the app store, I'm just going to read what the app store says, bullet point, bug fixes

00:33:25   and improvements, no period, return, learn more and see the full list of changes at blah

00:33:31   blah blah, support to apple.com/ht209087.

00:33:35   Apple, that is not a link, I cannot click this and open a browser.

00:33:40   That's true.

00:33:41   Put the notes in the app store.

00:33:43   are you doing Shortcuts team? Be better than this.

00:33:45   Listen to the old man, he's got a point.

00:33:49   My feeling is either have it be a clickable link, put them in there, or don't do it.

00:33:57   We will put the link in the show notes because we're better than the Shortcuts team at explaining

00:34:01   things.

00:34:02   I think it's ironic that the first new feature at the top of the release notes is added a

00:34:09   new post to Tumblr action.

00:34:10   Has to be clean, clean content everyone, clean content.

00:34:14   Tumblr is dying now, right?

00:34:16   Like this is going to kill Tumblr, the fact that there will be no more bots on Tumblr,

00:34:19   right?

00:34:20   Like that's the end of it, right?

00:34:23   It's got to be, right?

00:34:24   Like I feel like it can't be good for Tumblr.

00:34:27   I don't follow adult content creators on Tumblr, but I am familiar with the idea that

00:34:36   content is popular on Tumblr and most people use it for that.

00:34:40   So yes, I'm pretty sure that.

00:34:42   Tumblr is owned by Oa?

00:34:45   What's his name?

00:34:46   No.

00:34:47   Isn't it Alibaba?

00:34:48   Who owns Yahoo now?

00:34:50   No.

00:34:51   Oa is Verizon, right?

00:34:53   Who owns Tumblr?

00:34:54   But doesn't Yahoo own Tumblr?

00:34:57   No.

00:35:00   Let's look at Wikipedia.

00:35:01   It's complicated, Myke.

00:35:03   Anyway.

00:35:04   Relationship status.

00:35:05   It's complicated.

00:35:07   bug fixes while Steven looks it up. Let's see, for example...

00:35:12   Yeah, it's owned by Oath. Yeah, Oath.

00:35:14   And Oath is Verizon.

00:35:16   With is part of Verizon. It serves as the umbrella company to its digital content subdivisions

00:35:22   including AOL, Yahoo, with an exclamation point, Verizon's other businesses.

00:35:27   Oh, okay. So as Zach says in the chat room, Verizon owns Oath, Oath owns Yahoo, Yahoo

00:35:33   owns tumblr right yes it's like how it goes through the little chain of command there this is a

00:35:38   corporate corporate russian doll it's what it is a matryoshka matryoshka matryoshka

00:35:47   that's the russian nesting dolls uh uh steven what's um what's next on our list here uh so 12.1.1

00:36:00   Yep, that's out. Sortcrest is out.

00:36:02   Dual sim support, I will test. I actually, well not dual sim, like eSIM, not a physical sim,

00:36:11   physical dual sim. If you want to get that phone you got to go to Hong Kong and I don't want to go

00:36:16   to Hong Kong to buy. It's not worth it really.

00:36:17   It's not really worth it I think. But I will try again a test that I did a few weeks ago and we

00:36:24   We wanted to talk about it, but then we delayed the topic a bunch of times.

00:36:28   eSIM support on iOS 12.

00:36:32   I want to try at least two apps.

00:36:34   I only tried TruePhone the first time.

00:36:37   And I think the other company, what's the name, Geeksky, maybe,

00:36:40   they have an app update now that allows you to buy eSIM plans.

00:36:43   So I will try it again with 12.1.1, which is already --

00:36:48   I think I installed the beta on my phone last week to fix my iCloud issues.

00:36:53   That didn't work, but I will update to the public release

00:36:58   and try the ECM again and I will report back.

00:37:02   - As follow up to last week,

00:37:04   are your iCloud issues resolved yet?

00:37:05   - No. - Oh, whoa.

00:37:08   - They are not. - Really?

00:37:09   - Yeah, for example, right now reminders on my phone

00:37:13   says that one reminder is due today

00:37:16   and reminders on the Mac says

00:37:18   that three reminders are due today.

00:37:19   Nobody replied to my radar.

00:37:23   And, you know, I don't know what's going on.

00:37:25   I have a feeling that it's something on my Wi-Fi network at this point,

00:37:32   because if Apple can figure it out and I did multiple resets

00:37:39   and installing a new version of iOS,

00:37:42   logging in and out of iCloud,

00:37:46   I noticed something yesterday that reminders were not updating on my phone.

00:37:51   but when I turned off the Wi-Fi, they did.

00:37:55   And I have a feeling that somewhere in my local network,

00:38:02   either my setup or my ISP, are doing something

00:38:07   to iCloud sync.

00:38:11   This is just a hunch.

00:38:13   I'm not convinced, because I only noticed this behavior once.

00:38:17   But I need to look into it.

00:38:18   And I know that Apple has a support page where

00:38:21   they suggest which ports on your router that you need to open for, basically that Apple software uses.

00:38:29   So I will check that out and I will see what I have to do, but it's kind of weird because

00:38:35   I've never had these kinds of issues before and I haven't changed ISP or my setup in years.

00:38:43   So if it's a network problem, that's a new thing because it never, never happened before.

00:38:50   Now that would be really weird.

00:38:53   Yeah, I know. And it's super weird that at this point everything else works. Like messages, they sync fine. Photos, they sync fine.

00:39:02   Backups are working. Everything else iCloud related is working. My, what's it called, the text replacements, they are back and fully functioning.

00:39:13   Like, everything else is fine. Just Reminders, which is the app that I use the most, is not

00:39:19   working. It's not syncing my Reminders across devices. I don't know what else I need to

00:39:25   do. Again, I don't want to switch task managers again, so...

00:39:31   I would say, man, I know, I understand that, like, Reminders is, like, is working for you

00:39:36   and that kind of stuff, but, like, after a situation like this, I wouldn't stick with

00:39:42   it. I wouldn't. I would have to move, right? Like for me, with the way that I use my to-do system,

00:39:48   if I am not confident that everything I put into it is being recorded properly, then it is useless.

00:39:57   Same.

00:39:58   Like, and this is not a criticism on you, like, because we all, everybody works differently, but

00:40:03   I just say like, I am surprised if you want to stick with it if this doesn't get resolved

00:40:11   any quicker than it currently is.

00:40:13   The thing, the weird thing is that...

00:40:16   I don't know how to best explain this.

00:40:19   So right now my reminders are not synchronized

00:40:22   between my iPhone and my Mac.

00:40:24   But at some point...

00:40:26   today, they will be.

00:40:29   Oh my god.

00:40:31   Oh my god.

00:40:32   At some point, I will make a change either on my iPad

00:40:36   or my phone again.

00:40:38   And it will trigger sync.

00:40:40   So last week I told Steven like I'm completing the same reminders

00:40:45   twice or I'm moving them twice.

00:40:47   Now I just need to wait a bit longer because at some point

00:40:51   that is out of my control, they will be synchronized.

00:40:54   So it does sink.

00:40:56   But eventually very, very slowly.

00:41:00   But not yet. Right.

00:41:02   Yes. The rest of us, our iCloud accounts are on servers.

00:41:06   Federico's is like a status board and there's some interns at Apple.

00:41:10   And it's like, oh, he marked off this list.

00:41:11   And you have to run over there and check it off over here.

00:41:14   There's a human being in the middle of your iCloud account.

00:41:16   There's like a Trello board somewhere

00:41:18   that is just all of your reminders.

00:41:20   And then moving them around for you.

00:41:23   It's slow because they went to lunch.

00:41:25   Like, oh, no, he did stuff.

00:41:26   We were gone.

00:41:26   Last week after the show, I realized, well,

00:41:30   maybe the problem is that I have too many completed

00:41:33   reminders in my completed list.

00:41:36   And I looked, and there were like 950 reminders.

00:41:39   I was like, "Okay, so maybe that's too many."

00:41:42   So I tried, I put together a shortcut on iOS

00:41:46   to delete the computer reminders,

00:41:47   and it failed after deleting about 400.

00:41:51   So I needed to go to my Mac

00:41:53   and steal an Apple script from Dr. Drang

00:41:56   to delete the remaining 540-something reminders,

00:42:01   but that also didn't fix the problem.

00:42:03   So now I don't have my computer reminders anymore,

00:42:06   and the problem is still there.

00:42:08   And it's super weird because eventually it works.

00:42:10   And like right now, if I add a new reminder on my phone,

00:42:14   it will show up on my Mac instantly.

00:42:16   But some of the reminders that I complete

00:42:19   or that I reschedule to another date,

00:42:21   they will not sync for a few hours.

00:42:24   It's like, no man, we don't want to sync.

00:42:26   Just, you know, just chill.

00:42:28   - I can't fathom how it is like selectively syncing.

00:42:33   It doesn't make sense to me.

00:42:36   - I have no idea.

00:42:37   I have no idea.

00:42:38   What is going on?

00:42:39   It's like, oh yeah, didn't you know?

00:42:41   Like we keep it on two different servers.

00:42:43   All of the entered tasks go over here

00:42:46   and all of the completed tasks go over here.

00:42:49   - And I double checked, right?

00:42:50   I was like, maybe at some point in the past

00:42:53   I was testing some weird automation

00:42:56   and I created a reminder that has like a base64 string

00:43:01   as an attachment.

00:43:03   But no, I didn't do that.

00:43:05   Of all the things I've "based-64ed" in the past few months, reminders are now one of them!

00:43:11   And all my reminders are pretty basic, like "Text Myke" or "Respond to John", stuff like that.

00:43:18   I don't have these complex structures of projects, right?

00:43:22   I got like ten lists, and that's it, and two of them are shared with Silvia.

00:43:26   Like, it's a very basic setup.

00:43:30   So basic it doesn't even sync.

00:43:33   That's how basic it is.

00:43:35   Yeah.

00:43:35   Boy. Boy oh boy.

00:43:37   Well, I really hope that this gets fixed for you, because I would be losing my mind.

00:43:41   I know you've had some real dark days during all of this, and I would be just losing it.

00:43:47   I feel like I'm in a better place now.

00:43:49   I've accepted my fate of reminders are not gonna work well right now.

00:43:53   I wanna remain optimistic that somebody at Apple is listening to this program,

00:43:58   and they will fix my problems.

00:44:01   But, um, you know what concerns me?

00:44:04   It hasn't been fixed yet.

00:44:07   That that that's how it's concerned because, and

00:44:11   all right, so we need to get back to you.

00:44:13   Yeah, we need to just like, we have to lift the cart in a minute.

00:44:17   History has shown that if any of us have these big issues

00:44:23   and talk about it enough, like tweet about it, you talk about on a show or two,

00:44:28   Usually someone gets in contact with you and they're like, "All right,

00:44:33   let's see if we can fix this for you." And there is definite benefit to this,

00:44:37   right? Because we are power users,

00:44:39   we use things maybe more than the average person.

00:44:41   And if someone can work out how to fix this,

00:44:44   it might be a bug that they can fix for everyone. You know, that kind of thing.

00:44:47   There is definite benefit to it. Um, but it's also one of the perks of,

00:44:51   of having a popular podcast, right?

00:44:55   no one's done anything yet, right? Like, you're still having this problem. That is concerning

00:45:02   to me. Yeah. And also I think I mentioned last week, just as an extended follow-up,

00:45:10   that I was having trouble installing updates from the App Store and buying in-app purchases.

00:45:23   That issue is fixed, but I needed to get in touch separately with iTunes Store support,

00:45:30   because apparently my account, my Apple ID, was getting locked for security reasons for

00:45:38   just during normal usage.

00:45:40   This is something that the iTunes Store Senior Advisor I was put in touch with said, that

00:45:47   It may happen that during normal usage your account goes through a security screening

00:45:52   and gets locked, and so you can no longer update certain apps or buy in-app purchases.

00:45:58   Again, super weird.

00:46:00   I could buy paid upfront apps.

00:46:03   I could not buy in-app purchases.

00:46:06   Or install some updates.

00:46:10   Got in touch with iTunes support.

00:46:12   They fixed it.

00:46:14   The issue happened again two days later.

00:46:16   in touch again, they fixed it and now we're at today. So the lady was very nice, she said

00:46:27   they did something to my account to make sure that it doesn't happen again but that it may

00:46:30   also happen again so that's kind of confusing. But yeah, it's not been a good couple of weeks

00:46:36   in terms of teaching Apple software, I gotta tell you. Bunch of weird problems. It's weird

00:46:43   To me, because...

00:46:45   Why...

00:46:47   Like, what's go- Something bad's going on for you.

00:46:50   Like, I can't...

00:46:52   I can't assume that those two things are not related in some way.

00:46:57   They've gotta be.

00:46:58   I don't know, it looks like they're not.

00:47:00   It looks like they are two separate problems.

00:47:03   Can I ask one quick question?

00:47:05   Yeah.

00:47:06   Do you have your time set automatically?

00:47:08   Yeah.

00:47:10   Okay.

00:47:12   Yeah, no, I don't do those things with the date and stuff like that.

00:47:17   Maybe it's, I mean I know you don't use auto brightness, maybe that's the problem.

00:47:21   I do actually.

00:47:22   Do you use it now?

00:47:23   Oh yeah.

00:47:24   Oh that's good news.

00:47:25   I've been using it for like a year.

00:47:27   I get tired of managing, like adjusting brightness.

00:47:29   The micromanaging of screen brightness is just not something I want in my life, you

00:47:33   know?

00:47:34   Yeah, yeah, I stopped doing that.

00:47:36   Good.

00:47:37   I'm like misremembering, but didn't you move to a new iCloud account like four years ago?

00:47:42   Like, I feel like we've talked about this before and you like set up a new iCloud account

00:47:46   and just moved everything.

00:47:47   That's a long time ago.

00:47:49   Maybe it's time to do that again.

00:47:50   I have literally zero memory of this.

00:47:52   I have no memory of this.

00:47:54   This feels like it's new information to me completely.

00:47:56   So I'm one of those people that has two separate accounts on an iOS device.

00:48:01   So I have my iCloud account that I use for everything except the iTunes.

00:48:07   iTunes and App Store, yeah.

00:48:08   - Yeah, Adina has this too, and it's because of like,

00:48:11   she set up a Romanian account originally, right?

00:48:14   And that's where all her purchases were,

00:48:17   because you couldn't use a Romanian card

00:48:19   on a British account, that kind of thing.

00:48:21   She ended up moving it all, because like,

00:48:24   most regular people just buy a ton of apps,

00:48:26   so like, it wasn't like a huge financial investment

00:48:29   for her to switch over.

00:48:31   It was just a pain, right?

00:48:33   Like to download all of the apps again,

00:48:34   because you end up with that thing where it's like,

00:48:37   "Oh hey, you have to switch account to update this application."

00:48:39   And, yeah.

00:48:41   But, uh, okay.

00:48:43   Well, I look forward to the long-term follow-up

00:48:46   of Federico's iCloud issues.

00:48:49   Maybe the third iCloud account is the charm.

00:48:53   Nah. No. No, I don't want to.

00:48:57   Have you thought about, like, just switching to Android?

00:48:59   I'm not one of those people.

00:49:01   Okay. Okay.

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00:50:11   On Connected, we like to check back in with stuff we have been using for a while and Shortcuts

00:50:17   has been out now.

00:50:18   Sorry, I thought I would demo a new segment jingle for you there.

00:50:23   The check back in?

00:50:24   - You did the sound effect as you were saying that.

00:50:27   That was incredible.

00:50:28   It's like there's two mics.

00:50:31   - You're like a ventriloquist.

00:50:33   - Yeah, no, no, I hired someone

00:50:35   that I have just standing here,

00:50:37   ready to make the sound effect whenever I need it.

00:50:40   - Oh, this is somebody, somebody's looking at you

00:50:42   while you do the show.

00:50:43   - Sound effect Sammy, is their name.

00:50:46   - Sound effect Sammy.

00:50:47   - Yeah. - Okay.

00:50:48   Okay, that's not creepy at all.

00:50:50   - So this week, in whatever this segment is called,

00:50:53   We're talking about shortcuts.

00:50:55   - How do you know what it's called?

00:50:56   I just played the jingle.

00:50:57   - It's called the check back in.

00:50:59   Come on.

00:51:00   - The check back in.

00:51:01   So we're checking back in on shortcuts.

00:51:03   And Federico, you wrote a lot of things in the doc,

00:51:05   so why don't you go first?

00:51:07   - Yeah, there are not a lot of things.

00:51:08   You'll see my reviews, but yes.

00:51:11   So I wanted to, I asked you guys this question last night.

00:51:16   Why don't we check back in on how we, yes,

00:51:20   on how, thank you Sammy,

00:51:21   on how we are using the shortcuts app

00:51:26   and the series shortcuts for apps on iOS 12.

00:51:30   And I wanna talk about the shortcuts app first.

00:51:32   I've been impressed so far

00:51:36   with the work of the shortcuts team in adding new actions,

00:51:40   especially with the 12.1 release

00:51:43   that added the weather actions

00:51:45   and the clock and measurement actions,

00:51:48   but also the sharing improvements for iCloud,

00:51:51   those actually work for me.

00:51:53   And the bug fixes, the performance improvements,

00:51:56   like all the general maintenance of shortcuts.

00:52:00   I was afraid coming into iOS 12 and shortcuts 2.0,

00:52:05   that it was gonna stay untouched for months.

00:52:08   And that has not happened so far.

00:52:10   The team is still listening to feedback

00:52:14   and they are like, they still keep the test flight beta

00:52:19   going. So I don't know if at this point, you know, with the latest release that we just mentioned,

00:52:24   they got rid of a lot of bugs that were affecting the app. Now, going into the new year, will we see

00:52:32   any major shortcuts features before WWDC? I don't know. I'm not sure. Mostly because I think

00:52:41   Most teams at Apple, they, institutionally,

00:52:45   they tend to save big features for WWDC

00:52:48   because it's their thing, right?

00:52:50   It's their conference, it's where the software,

00:52:53   the new software happens.

00:52:54   So will shortcuts get stuff like folders

00:52:57   or auto triggers before WWDC?

00:53:01   I don't know.

00:53:02   Will it get new actions and some new features?

00:53:05   Maybe.

00:53:06   That said, I wanted to go over with you to

00:53:10   our usage of the shortcuts app before we talk about Siri shortcuts for apps.

00:53:14   And personally, I mean, I'm still using shortcuts a lot. It's probably my most used app, you know,

00:53:24   except for maybe my text editor where I write. There's new ways that I'm using shortcuts and

00:53:31   old ways that I'm using it for. New ways include HomeKit controls, so the new HomeKit integration,

00:53:38   the ability to run scenes. I'm using that a lot. I put together a lot of shortcuts that

00:53:43   trigger specific scenes or trigger things together, like multiple scenes in a row,

00:53:48   or for example commands on the Mac Mini, as I talked about with Steven last week,

00:53:54   in addition to HomeKit scenes. And I'm using these shortcuts as widgets and also as icons on

00:54:00   on the home screen for easy access.

00:54:03   And there are also old ways that I'm using shortcuts

00:54:07   like a more powerful version of workflow

00:54:09   because that's what it is.

00:54:10   Like my shortcuts to add device frames to screenshots

00:54:15   or the shortcuts that I have for accessing reminders

00:54:19   when they are synchronized on my phone.

00:54:22   Shortcuts for Mac mini automation,

00:54:27   shortcuts for AppleScript, for example.

00:54:30   Now I can change the volume of my home pods from shortcuts and Siri.

00:54:33   And I find myself using the Siri integration a lot.

00:54:38   So the ability to to run a custom shortcut inside Siri that I'm using quite frequently,

00:54:44   especially for shortcuts that do something in the background or produce something

00:54:49   without user interaction in Siri, because that's not supported yet anyway.

00:54:53   So overall, I would say that.

00:54:56   I'm using the new actions like measurement, for example, that I'm using a lot.

00:55:01   I'm happy with the fixes, especially in the latest release that has been in beta for a few weeks at this point.

00:55:08   The new system integrations like HomeKit, they're really convenient.

00:55:14   But overall, I mean, I'm super happy about shortcuts.

00:55:18   I'm just not concerned, but curious to see what happens before WWDC.

00:55:24   If now that they have fixed all of the major bugs, will they disappear for six months?

00:55:31   Or will we still see some stuff from the shortcuts team? I don't know.

00:55:35   So for me, I would say I use shortcuts as much as I use workflow workflows.

00:55:42   Right? Like I use them every day, a couple of times a day, but not for like as much as

00:55:48   you would use, not even close, right? But the difference for me now compared from shortcuts

00:55:55   to workflow is if I want to make something, I can do it more often than not, which wasn't

00:56:02   the way with workflow. Because I have an idea about something I want to do and either A,

00:56:08   it's a system feature which is now supported, or B, third party app has put it in for adoption

00:56:15   by the shortcuts app. So I'm finding myself being able to build shortcuts on my own more

00:56:22   easily than I could workflows. And with every new feature that they keep coming up with,

00:56:29   I use it more and more. It's a slow building thing for me and I expect it to continue.

00:56:34   When I saw shortcuts, I was like, "Well, this is going to change everything for me." And

00:56:40   And I still believe it will, but I now think it will be on a slower timeframe than I initially

00:56:46   expected.

00:56:47   Like, I think it needs all of the things that you want, right?

00:56:50   And being able to do more things in the background, being able to do things on times will allow

00:56:56   me to build some more interesting stuff than what I can currently build.

00:57:01   Because I'm still limited to what I will want to access or trigger at any specific point.

00:57:07   my ability to be able to create things on my own is increased. And I think that that

00:57:12   is probably the most important thing to do first, right is like, give people the tools

00:57:18   to be able to do this stuff and make it easier for them to do it. And then then like further

00:57:23   continue how hooked into the system it is.

00:57:29   I think that's about where I am to it's hasn't radically increased my usage of it. But what

00:57:35   I can do with it seems easier. Now one thing I am doing and using quite a bit

00:57:41   are the like the Siri shortcuts and apps so things like overcast to skip a

00:57:46   chapter or to go back or in carrot weather it has a bunch of different ones

00:57:51   now you know and those I really like just be able to just talk to my phone

00:57:55   and get something or an overcast if I'm riding my bike be able to say hey skip

00:57:59   this chapter go back whatever that's just really nice I I still think the way

00:58:04   Apple and third party developers surface some of that is a little confusing. And if you

00:58:10   go to the settings screen, just downright overwhelming. These are all the last 35 things

00:58:16   you could do. I wish some of that was clearer for average users, but I'm liking that stuff

00:58:21   a lot just to not necessarily build a shortcut itself, but to just surface little bits of

00:58:27   apps from anywhere is pretty handy.

00:58:29   - Yeah, there is that super weird thing

00:58:31   where an application's like, now with Siri shortcuts.

00:58:34   And you would have to just, where do they exist?

00:58:37   Like they're not anywhere, right?

00:58:38   You know the app has them somewhere, but where is it?

00:58:42   - I wish there was a sort of a universal place

00:58:45   to look at all that stuff,

00:58:46   like a directory Apple could keep in settings.

00:58:49   So these are all the apps you have installed

00:58:51   that have Siri shortcut support.

00:58:53   These are all the shortcuts that they present to the system.

00:58:55   I think that sort of index or dictionary somewhere

00:58:58   would be really nice.

00:58:59   you have that thing in settings, right, where like it can show them, but they don't all

00:59:03   work, though, right? So like, am I right with that Federico? Like, the developer still has

00:59:08   to say, "Show them all in settings." Like, it doesn't automatically work that way.

00:59:12   Yeah, it's weird because there are three layers to this. Like, there's the recent shortcuts,

00:59:21   the relevant shortcuts, and all shortcuts. And those are like three separate presentation

00:59:27   modes that you can access. I think the easiest way is probably that most people tend to forget

00:59:33   that it's possible. You need to open settings and scroll to the list of apps, like in the

00:59:39   main screen toward the bottom, and each app has a shortcut section where you can view

00:59:45   all of the shortcuts they support, not just the recent ones. Because if you go to Settings

00:59:50   Syrian search shortcuts, you will only see the recently donated ones, whereas if you

00:59:57   go to the app list and you open an individual app, you will see all of the shortcuts that

01:00:01   the app supports.

01:00:02   I think that's the way it works.

01:00:04   But yeah, it's confusing.

01:00:05   And I wish that, to your point, Steven, I wish that there was a way to have grouping

01:00:12   by app or new sorting options.

01:00:17   I think the current separation of recently used or recently donated and relevant to this

01:00:24   moment doesn't really scale well when you have like a hundred apps installed.

01:00:29   And also, I wanted to ask you guys, have you ever, ever seen a Siri shortcut on your lock

01:00:38   screen?

01:00:39   Never.

01:00:40   I don't think so.

01:00:41   Never.

01:00:42   Never seen one.

01:00:43   This is one of the features that was hyped at WWDC.

01:00:48   And it definitely did work for me at some point this summer,

01:00:51   because I took screenshots, I talked about it in the review.

01:00:54   But then after the final version of iOS shipped,

01:00:57   I never got a shortcut recommendation on the lock screen.

01:01:02   - I get them in Spotlight, right?

01:01:05   Like, and sometimes they are actually what I want,

01:01:07   which I'm always impressed with, right?

01:01:09   When it is actually something I would want.

01:01:10   like a URL in Safari. It's like, "Oh, you want to go to this page?"

01:01:15   I'm like, "Yeah, I do. You're right."

01:01:16   You know, but like, I've never ever, ever seen one on the log screen.

01:01:22   Yeah. And some Apple people will tell you,

01:01:26   "Oh, it's because the system hasn't met the suggestion threshold

01:01:32   to push up a shortcut on the log screen."

01:01:34   I don't believe that because, I mean, I've been using iOS 12 since June,

01:01:38   but let's say just the final version, it's been three months.

01:01:41   I think you have enough data points to know what I do on my phone,

01:01:44   and I'm surprised that I still haven't seen a shortcut on the lock screen,

01:01:47   especially because those shortcuts, those images,

01:01:50   they are all over the marketing material for shortcuts in iOS 12,

01:01:53   like getting shortcut recommendations on the lock screen.

01:01:56   Those screenshots and photos are everywhere on Apple's website.

01:02:01   So I don't know, never worked for me.

01:02:05   What about, um, are there like specific features of the shortcuts app that you feel like you

01:02:15   would need as soon as possible?

01:02:19   Not like in June, in six months.

01:02:21   Like is that a specific thing that's preventing you from being as efficient as you would like

01:02:26   to be with shortcuts?

01:02:28   I don't...

01:02:31   I don't think so.

01:02:32   I think what I really want is like,

01:02:36   it's the third party stuff, right? Like I want more,

01:02:41   I want like every app that I use to be able to donate more things better.

01:02:46   So for like, for example, my email app, Spark, has terrible shortcut support.

01:02:50   Like it's so bad, right?

01:02:53   When like what I want to see is stuff like what is my in my inbox right now?

01:02:58   Like what emails have I received today? Like I would use that quite a lot.

01:03:02   But they don't have anything like that, you know.

01:03:04   So for me, I think a lot of what has prevented me from using it

01:03:08   more is that a lot of the applications that I use don't.

01:03:13   So I had this this idea in my brain, right,

01:03:16   of the things I would be able to build.

01:03:20   But what has come to fruition is not what I was looking for.

01:03:24   Like there's a bunch of super exciting things and interesting things that I can do.

01:03:28   But a lot of the third party stuff that I'm doing is like

01:03:31   one or two actions.

01:03:34   Like I use the overcast one to resume

01:03:37   my cue multiple times

01:03:38   a day because it works so well,

01:03:41   because it works better than anything

01:03:42   else. Right. Because I could have

01:03:43   been listening to music, so I can't

01:03:45   press play in control center, but I

01:03:47   can always get it to work with the

01:03:48   shortcut. I just like, oh, hi,

01:03:49   telephone, resume overcast.

01:03:51   Done. And it just works.

01:03:52   Stuff like that.

01:03:54   Fantastic.

01:03:55   But like, you know how everybody

01:03:57   wanted to build a morning routine?

01:03:58   Yeah.

01:04:00   Like so many things that I want

01:04:01   I want to do in that, I can't do. Like, for example, if I want to do something like that,

01:04:08   I want everything read out to me, right? But like, it won't read to me my calendar appointments.

01:04:13   - Uh-huh, yeah. - Right? I have to look at my phone for that. Well, it's like, well,

01:04:16   you know what I mean? I feel like it's... What it feels like is version one, right? Which it

01:04:25   kind of is version one. Like, I know workflow existed, but what shortcuts can do compared to

01:04:30   what Workflow can do, it's like a completely different thing, right? Like all of the system

01:04:35   stuff that it can do, being able to work so tightly with Siri, this is all version one stuff.

01:04:39   And I'm hoping that that will improve. And I'm also hoping that Apple shows the significant

01:04:46   changes to it over the next few years to encourage developers to continue working on it.

01:04:50   Because my concern is it will be like iPad apps, right? Everyone did them, and then Apple stopped

01:04:58   working on it and then nobody made anything more than like flight control HD, right?

01:05:03   Like, and then it took like six years.

01:05:06   But it was just like everything was something HD, right?

01:05:09   You know, that was how all of the apps began.

01:05:11   Everyone was super excited.

01:05:13   There was tons of them. And then there was just nothing, right?

01:05:16   For like five years until it started up again.

01:05:18   And I don't and I would feel that like as great as Shortcuts is,

01:05:24   if it doesn't get continued support, it will not get its resurgence, right?

01:05:28   it will not get a resurgence like the iPad did because Apple isn't selling shortcuts hardware to

01:05:33   anybody. So I just hope, look, everything I know, everything I believe about the people behind this

01:05:41   would suggest to me, and the history that we have seen since September, would suggest to me,

01:05:47   as you were saying, that this is still being very actively worked on. Like a lot of the stuff that

01:05:51   they've pushed out as bug fixes could just come out in September again, right? Because they have

01:05:56   actually been adding features. So you know and also I know that things tend to

01:06:01   come out with iOS releases but not always right there's been some updates

01:06:06   that have not been part of iOS releases but they come out at the same time is

01:06:10   what I'm saying am I right in that or they always come out when some kind of

01:06:13   point updates come out? You mean about apps? Well the shortcuts app does it

01:06:22   always get updated when there is a new version of iOS or has it ever been

01:06:26   updated without there being a new version of iOS to go along with it?

01:06:30   I think it got updates without it.

01:06:31   Yeah I think so too. It does seem like it's frequently at the same time for reasons that I'm not 100% sure

01:06:38   but it does feel like there is also some bug fixes that come out in the interim as well.

01:06:43   So yeah I don't know if there's like I have a stumbling block like a specific stumbling block

01:06:49   I just think that maybe my initial excitement was thinking about a future world, right?

01:06:56   Like it's not the one that we have right now, but there is still more than ample ability

01:07:01   for it to get to where I would personally want it to end up being.

01:07:07   Yeah.

01:07:08   And there are features that we mention often, like having folders or having user interaction

01:07:15   in Siri or even having like a native framework for apps so that you don't have to use like

01:07:23   X-callback and that type of stuff anymore. But really there are some like some really

01:07:29   big features and native functionalities that I think need to happen at some point if they,

01:07:35   you know, to expand the reach of shortcuts beyond people who were already familiar with workflow.

01:07:41   stuff like having these automatic triggers to run a shortcut when it's a specific time of the day or

01:07:47   location or an alarm is triggered in calendar. So those kinds of triggers.

01:07:52   So you remember we were talking about an actions-focused home screen, right? We were

01:07:58   talking about that a couple of weeks ago, right? Because you built your incredible icon-launching

01:08:05   thing, right? I spent some time playing around with it, and I found myself being frustrated.

01:08:10   So I set up a couple of actions as if one was a new Intoduist and one was a "What's

01:08:16   going on today?"

01:08:17   So it would show me my calendar and show me my Intoduist, what's happening today in Intoduist.

01:08:24   But every time I press them, the shortcuts output would open and then it would fire something

01:08:30   else and it's just like, "This is clunky.

01:08:34   I don't like it.

01:08:35   It's not what I want."

01:08:36   what I want is just to tap it and just see the UI that Todoist built for this that shows

01:08:43   in Siri, right? Or it takes me right to where I want it to be. I don't want it to open shortcuts

01:08:51   and run the shortcut. I had this grand idea of like, "Oh, what if I rebuilt my entire

01:08:57   iPhone around actions?" and then was turned off by the fact that it was just... I know

01:09:02   I would get really frustrated with the clunkiness over time. So what I really want, the biggest

01:09:09   things that I want from Shortcuts now is to not have to see the Shortcuts app except for

01:09:14   when I'm building Shortcuts.

01:09:16   So the system should suggest them to me better, I should be able to add them to my home screen

01:09:21   and all of this stuff, they should be able to run on timers, they should be able to do

01:09:27   all kinds of wonderful things without me needing to see the shortcuts app every time. To me,

01:09:32   the shortcuts app is the building tool. That's pretty much all I want it to be.

01:09:38   It's like if every time you wanted to get somewhere, you would need to look at the engine

01:09:41   of your car working.

01:09:42   It's just like, if I go to the store, okay, yep, yep, the carburetors are firing, here

01:09:48   we go.

01:09:49   Exactly. And I could see a home screen where you can add a shortcut. And by the way, Apple

01:09:54   should totally get rid of the system that I'm exploiting with my shortcut to save web

01:10:01   clip icons to the home screen.

01:10:02   I was going to say that they probably will, now that you've done what you've done, is

01:10:06   my feeling.

01:10:08   You've exposed the engine.

01:10:12   But I could see, for example, you add shortcuts to your home screen and you have a shortcut

01:10:17   that presents you with an image.

01:10:20   And so you tap a shortcut and you see like a quick look come up with a photo, like a

01:10:25   specific photo or a specific document without having to see shortcuts launching and running

01:10:30   step one, step two, and all those actions.

01:10:34   Or like maybe you have a custom shortcut that puts together a bunch of data from different

01:10:40   places like a morning routine, for example, and you add it to the home screen and you

01:10:45   you tap it and you see just the result of that shortcut, not all of the steps.

01:10:51   Like that would be amazing.

01:10:54   That's a very good point of like, I don't need to see the building blocks every time,

01:10:58   I just want to see the result.

01:11:01   Because right now, I mean, we basically have a different version of what was in workflow.

01:11:07   So this work around of adding web apps to the home screen, that's what it is.

01:11:13   should be a native solution to do this. Yeah, yeah. I mean, I find myself, like,

01:11:19   about 90, I would say about 75% of the shortcuts that I run are being

01:11:29   triggered from the widget because when you tap something in the widget a lot

01:11:37   of it can run without you having to look at it. So like I have some workflows,

01:11:42   shortcuts I should say, sorry, that if I run from any place other than in the

01:11:46   widget I have to watch it happen. But in the widget I don't have to watch it

01:11:51   happen. Like it will just, it just does its thing for me. And that is how I wished

01:11:55   it was in more places. So, but yeah, I mean they're, again, like it's as I

01:12:00   say every time, if you work on iOS you need this app and you need it more than

01:12:05   you think you need it. Like it bridges so many important gaps but there's still

01:12:09   room to grow. Can I say something quick for two minutes?

01:12:12   Yeah. I don't know if you guys are familiar with all these websites that have popped up,

01:12:17   like Routine Hub, for example. These sort of third-party websites that aggregate shortcuts

01:12:23   made by other people. And I've seen this trend, especially on the shortcuts subreddit, of

01:12:35   adding a lot of custom actions to a shortcut that you share with people to, for example,

01:12:43   to support versioning and auto-updates and contacting a server to download the latest

01:12:50   version of a shortcut.

01:12:52   Adding all of these dependencies, essentially, to a shortcut just to make sure that it works

01:12:59   with these websites, and that it supports auto-updates and stuff like that.

01:13:05   And why I appreciate what, for example, I don't want to call out the folks at RoutineHub

01:13:09   specifically, they're doing an excellent job aggregating shortcuts, but personally, I don't

01:13:14   like, and that's the reason why I don't use it, people have been asking, like, why don't

01:13:19   you put this code in your shortcuts?

01:13:23   I don't like the idea of making a shortcut for people and sharing the link and before,

01:13:30   and you're not able to understand what the shortcut does because before you get to the

01:13:34   actual shortcut, you see 20 actions that are meant to like create a folder in your iCloud

01:13:40   drive to save a configuration file, to save references.

01:13:45   I don't want to do that.

01:13:46   I don't want to do that to my readers.

01:13:47   I don't want to do that to everybody who follows me on Twitter.

01:13:51   And also, I've seen many times some questionable choices

01:13:56   in terms of pinging a remote server

01:13:58   to download configuration files.

01:14:01   So my advice would be, if you share a shortcut

01:14:04   with a lot of people, don't add this custom code.

01:14:06   Wait for Apple to ship a native feature.

01:14:08   Yes, I know that it sucks that shortcuts do not

01:14:11   support auto-updates.

01:14:13   You can share them on these websites

01:14:15   without having to add any custom code.

01:14:17   But also, be mindful.

01:14:18   Whenever you come across these long shortcuts,

01:14:20   Be mindful of the remote calls that they are making to servers

01:14:25   that are not your own.

01:14:28   These shortcuts, they cannot seal your data or anything

01:14:31   like that.

01:14:31   Why would a shortcut need to do this?

01:14:33   For example, if you host a JSON file for configuration

01:14:37   of the shortcut remotely, every time the shortcut runs,

01:14:40   it could download the latest content of the JSON file

01:14:44   from your server.

01:14:46   OK.

01:14:47   But what do you need that for, though?

01:14:49   what kind of shortcuts you--

01:14:52   For example, to see how certain preferences

01:14:56   are set on the user's device for that specific shortcut.

01:15:03   I've seen shortcuts, for example,

01:15:04   that need to talk to a server before continuing,

01:15:12   because they need to make sure that you have the latest

01:15:14   version installed, or that you--

01:15:17   they need to check if you installed the shortcut correctly,

01:15:21   for example.

01:15:22   And I've seen shortcuts that like create five folders

01:15:26   in iCloud drive and store like dozens of text files

01:15:30   just for configuration purposes,

01:15:32   just to support auto update and auto checking

01:15:35   every time the shortcut runs.

01:15:37   I understand why people do this.

01:15:39   I don't like it.

01:15:40   And I don't like the idea of every time the shortcut runs,

01:15:44   it talks to a server that is not specifically mentioned

01:15:48   in the description of the shortcut

01:15:49   or in the comments of the shortcut.

01:15:52   And for example, you may think that you're just,

01:15:54   I don't know, using a shortcut that you pick a photo

01:15:57   and you add, I don't know, a frame to the photo,

01:15:59   but then you end up in a situation

01:16:01   where that photo is also uploaded to a server.

01:16:03   Like be mindful of the shortcuts that you download

01:16:06   and always look at them.

01:16:07   And that is why I always leave comments

01:16:09   and why I always explain the shortcuts that I make,

01:16:12   because I want to make sure that people understand what they're using on their devices.

01:16:19   Super weird.

01:16:20   Yeah. I don't like that. I don't like that at all.

01:16:23   I've never even heard of this. And again, I'm still not even sure I know why it needs

01:16:30   to be done.

01:16:33   Most people are trying to compensate for the fact that when you share a shortcut, that's

01:16:39   That's it. That's the version that you shared.

01:16:41   If you make a change to the shortcut

01:16:43   that you shared with people,

01:16:44   then you gotta go to those people and say,

01:16:47   "Oh, I have a new version.

01:16:48   You should remove the first one and install this new one

01:16:51   because I fixed something."

01:16:52   Right?

01:16:53   I have a website to do this.

01:16:55   I have a Twitter account with a bunch of followers.

01:16:57   Most people on Reddit, they don't wanna do this

01:17:00   because they don't have a website or don't have an audience.

01:17:03   And so they embed this code in the shortcut

01:17:06   that every time it runs,

01:17:08   It checks if there's a new version,

01:17:10   which means you're hosting this code somewhere else

01:17:13   because it needs to check.

01:17:14   I really don't like it.

01:17:17   I really, I understand why people do it,

01:17:19   but please find some other way

01:17:21   that is not embedding 20 actions or even five actions.

01:17:24   It's just, my advice for people is that

01:17:27   while you may think that it's a good idea now,

01:17:30   and adding this kind of third-party dependency

01:17:33   to your shortcut is not something that you really,

01:17:37   Think about it very carefully, because this is a common problem, I guess, for programming

01:17:42   in general, adding a third-party dependency to your code.

01:17:45   And it's essentially the same thing in shortcuts at this point.

01:17:48   Because you don't want to be in a situation where, you know, you make a shortcut, you're

01:17:52   really proud of it, and then in six months it's no longer working, because the third-party

01:17:56   service that you trusted for auto-updates no longer exists.

01:18:01   And so now you've got to go back and change your shortcuts six months later.

01:18:05   You have introduced me to a world that I had no idea existed.

01:18:08   Oh, yeah. That's so interesting to me.

01:18:10   I had no idea people were doing this kind of stuff.

01:18:12   Yeah. Today's episode is also brought to you by our friends over at Luna Display.

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01:19:05   Right? Like you're going to get on a train today with a 27 inch monitor under your arm.

01:19:10   That doesn't make any sense. Use your iPad and your laptop.

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01:19:23   I need my Mac for this one thing and I can just go in and just use it

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01:19:58   like an iOS video the other day, they were like on their Mac

01:20:01   and they airdropped an image to themselves, right?

01:20:04   Which is just like, oh, that's interesting

01:20:07   because airdrop will still work because it's on the Mac.

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01:20:13   Our thanks to Luna Display for their support of this show and Relay FM.

01:20:17   I got to tell you about the sponsor.

01:20:18   I was so happy with the Luna unit that they sent me a few months ago.

01:20:22   It was a mini DisplayPort unit.

01:20:24   It worked so well that I just bought like two days ago,

01:20:27   I bought a USB-C version that I'm waiting for.

01:20:29   I did the exact same thing.

01:20:31   You know what I want to do?

01:20:33   I want to see if it's possible that I keep the Luna always plugged into the Mac Mini.

01:20:40   I use Mac OS for my iPad when I need it.

01:20:43   But then if I want a bigger screen, I will mirror the iPad running Luna to the Ultrafine.

01:20:49   I want to see what happens.

01:20:53   So the Mac Mini sitting next to the monitor, but yeah, it's going through the iPad.

01:20:58   Alright man, you do you.

01:21:00   I'm sure it's possible.

01:21:02   That is something that I want to try.

01:21:03   But yes, go get a lunar display, it's excellent.

01:21:06   Talking about interesting ways to access things.

01:21:10   Apple Music is coming to the Amazon Echo.

01:21:13   Hmm, okay.

01:21:14   Are you happy?

01:21:15   You're still using the Echo?

01:21:17   Well, I mean, I still have them.

01:21:19   I don't listen to music on my Echo.

01:21:21   Okay.

01:21:22   This is interesting. I mean, I would love a little bit more information, since we're

01:21:28   going to have to wait. So like, it's not completely clear right now, launch on December 17th,

01:21:32   it's not completely clear right now whether this is a skill, or you'll have the ability

01:21:38   to set it as a default music service.

01:21:40   Okay, so I also wondered this publicly, and people, because it was public people, got

01:21:47   in touch with me and said the title, you know, the Jay-Z music service.

01:21:53   What is Tidal's thing? Isn't it like uncompressed? Isn't that their thing? They have a thing,

01:21:58   right? Yeah, the thing is lossless. Lossless, that's it. Yeah. They also launched a skill

01:22:07   for the Echo, I think a couple of weeks ago, but it can apparently be used, once a skill

01:22:13   is installed, it can be used as a default music service. So I think it works this way.

01:22:18   Once you install the skill, it becomes an option in the device settings for music service.

01:22:25   Okay. Interesting. And I'm assuming, I'm just going to assume, because I don't think this

01:22:30   could even remotely be possible, that it would be possible for me to play songs on my own

01:22:34   bottom animals and echo at the same time, right? Like, I wouldn't be able, like with

01:22:40   Sonos like I wouldn't be able to use multi room that doesn't seem possible right that's not possible probably not

01:22:45   I've severely doubt it right cuz like yeah that I just I just popped into my head

01:22:53   But no that would I can't imagine it being possible so we need a system like Spotify Connect

01:22:57   Which is really good, but Apple doesn't have I will finally be able to cancel my Spotify account

01:23:03   Now I kind of forgot that I had one

01:23:08   Because I never use music on my echo anymore, right? That's why I had it because Amazon music's library service

01:23:14   It's not very good

01:23:15   Like it does it has doesn't have a lot of what I'm looking for

01:23:18   But Spotify did so when I was using the echo stuff, I would have Spotify and would use that

01:23:23   But now I have the home pods and I'm very happy with the home pods. I just happy music

01:23:27   Apple music also exists on Android

01:23:31   I saw a report like a news story that they're gonna actually create a tablet Amazon

01:23:37   an Android tablet version of Apple Music. This is interesting, right? Like, it's weird,

01:23:44   like it feels super weird, but I guess this is like Apple the services company, right? Like,

01:23:51   this is what they have to do if they want to be a services company.

01:23:55   It's a very different Apple in that we're not used to see

01:24:03   Apple allow its software to run on hardware from other companies.

01:24:08   And especially...

01:24:12   And it still remains strange in that you see this other company write a blog post about it

01:24:19   and say "We worked with Apple!" but Apple is silent.

01:24:22   And it's like this announcement never happened.

01:24:24   That was one of the reasons why I was wondering if it was just like a skill that Amazon built.

01:24:28   Right?

01:24:29   And they're just like "Haha! We're using the API! What are you gonna do?"

01:24:32   Right, but I can't imagine that Amazon would even attempt to do that without tying Apple first.

01:24:38   I don't think that Amazon just signed up for an Apple Developer Account and be like,

01:24:42   "Let's build an Apple Music skill and write a blog post about it."

01:24:46   Wouldn't that be the greatest shade though?

01:24:48   Right, because what could Apple do about it at that point?

01:24:51   It's like, "Haha, everyone knows about it now. Don't shut us down."

01:24:55   No, but because you need to log in with your Apple Music Account, I think...

01:24:59   I don't know, maybe it's possible to build a third party skill, I don't know.

01:25:03   But it's strange because we're going to see this more and more, especially I think with

01:25:09   the TV service.

01:25:11   Now that we have Apple Music on Android and Apple Music on the Echo, why not have Apple

01:25:19   TV if it's going to be called the service, Apple TV the service, if it's going to be

01:25:23   called Apple TV.

01:25:24   you know, Jason Snell's theory that it's gonna be called Apple TV. Why not have Apple TV

01:25:30   pre-installed on, I don't know, web OS televisions or Samsung televisions? I mean, why not? If

01:25:38   this is a service, and by definition a service is something that needs to reach as many people

01:25:42   as possible to provide the service, why not have it on multiple devices that are not just,

01:25:49   know, the Apple TV overpriced pack that you need to buy in an Apple store. I think we're

01:25:55   going to see this more and more for services. And it creates this weird contrast between

01:26:01   the same company that makes the iPhone and iOS this locked down platform where everything

01:26:08   is curated in theory and Apple approves the kind of software that runs on these devices

01:26:13   and the same company that needs to make money off of services, and so they're making skills

01:26:20   and integrations for Android and for Amazon and maybe for TVs going forward. It's a very

01:26:25   interesting contrast, and I don't know how I feel about it, but it's going to be interesting

01:26:31   to observe.

01:26:32   I think it's just an inevitable move. It is weird because if you look at the previous

01:26:40   iteration of this was iTunes, right?

01:26:42   And iTunes and the iPod had a very symbiotic relationship,

01:26:47   and the iPod got big when Apple put iTunes on Windows.

01:26:52   Steve Jobs stood in front of a slide

01:26:53   that said, "Hell Froze Over."

01:26:55   Just a great Steve Jobs keynote slide.

01:26:58   This is a little bit different.

01:27:00   Then it was about selling hardware in the iPod,

01:27:03   and then selling music through iTunes was to feed the iPod.

01:27:07   Now it feels like it's a little bit different.

01:27:08   You can buy a HomePod,

01:27:09   but they really want you to be an Apple Music subscriber,

01:27:12   but there's still that relationship

01:27:15   between the hardware and the service.

01:27:16   The difference now is that the service

01:27:18   is in the driver's seat, and so if you look at it that way,

01:27:22   it makes sense for them to be on the Echo.

01:27:24   I think there are a lot of Apple customers

01:27:27   with Amazon Echos, right?

01:27:29   It's sort of like people who buy iPhones

01:27:31   and have Apple Music, like they're gonna spend money

01:27:32   on voice assistants for their home.

01:27:34   It makes sense.

01:27:36   It's weird, but I see why they've done it.

01:27:39   The same reason I think that Apple Music

01:27:41   will continue to exist on Android,

01:27:44   why I think that they need a better

01:27:46   web client for Apple Music,

01:27:50   why they need a better Mac client for Apple Music,

01:27:52   'cause it's stuck inside iTunes,

01:27:53   which is a horrible place to be.

01:27:55   But I think we're gonna see more and more of this

01:27:57   as Apple shifts at least part of its business

01:28:00   to services revenue.

01:28:02   Stuff like this will become more and more obvious over time.

01:28:05   This one seems like a little weird.

01:28:10   But like, are they gonna put Apple Music on Google Home?

01:28:13   - No, why not?

01:28:16   - Right, like there's just something about like

01:28:18   Apple Music on the Amazon Echo,

01:28:20   like that whole thing seems peculiar to me.

01:28:23   Like it just, you know, I know that Amazon is now

01:28:27   trying to pitch their stuff as more of a music focused thing

01:28:30   They have more like musically capable products now.

01:28:34   But I wonder is this part of a bigger thing which includes Apple TV

01:28:42   going to Amazon Fire TV sticks?

01:28:44   It's like a whole big thing.

01:28:46   Each company is coming to the table with a thing they want to achieve.

01:28:50   Amazon want Apple Music and then maybe Apple want Apple TV on Amazon's products.

01:28:56   Like you never know how these things actually go in the background.

01:28:59   I tend to believe that a lot of these moves are part of much, much bigger things.

01:29:03   And it's like, this is just the stuff that we see publicly.

01:29:06   It's all House of Cards back there, you know?

01:29:08   But I...

01:29:10   Yeah, it's interesting, right?

01:29:13   Like, you bring up the iTunes on Windows.

01:29:15   Is that the only example of this, other than Apple Music?

01:29:21   Of like, software that Apple makes for other platforms?

01:29:27   Can't think of anything else. I mean there's iCloud sync and stuff on Windows that's been there a long time

01:29:33   But that's about it. I mean that Apple works right on the PC a long time ago. Does that count?

01:29:40   I don't think they make anything for Linux

01:29:42   What you're saying is it's the year of Apple music?

01:29:45   No Linux laptops just Linux on the desktop they won't make it for laptops

01:29:51   I wonder if this is gonna be us only how long is it gonna be us only for like I have oh, yeah

01:29:57   This is going to be one of those things where Apple, like every other company in the world,

01:30:01   didn't know that they had to go through a different process for submitting to international

01:30:05   Amazon stores. So like the skills in the UK have to be submitted separately to the skills

01:30:11   in the US. This happens all the time. And I have no doubt that's going to be a problem.

01:30:18   It's interesting to consider where sort of the power lies in this relationship. Apple

01:30:26   needs Amazon more than Amazon needs to be on the HomePod. That's what I see here.

01:30:33   Apple Music needs to be on the Echo because Apple wants to be on the Echo more than Amazon

01:30:37   wants to have Amazon Music on the HomePod. And it's a, you know, Apple can play, you

01:30:43   know, can be, you know, the company that doesn't comment on these. They haven't announced anything

01:30:49   on their own, you know, through their own channels and probably won't. I would be surprised

01:30:54   to see a Phil Schiller tweet, or maybe an Eddie Q tweet, maybe Eddie will tweet about

01:30:59   it. He's the kind of guy who's gonna...

01:31:00   You don't think it might show up on the newsroom?

01:31:02   Mmm, no, no. I don't know. I don't know. It would be really strange to see an Amazon product

01:31:10   mentioned on Apple.com. I don't know. But Apple needs to be on the Echo, because more

01:31:17   more people have the echo and it's a chance to expose Apple Music to a big audience. And

01:31:25   so I think it's very fascinating that Apple is in this situation at this point. And they

01:31:33   will be when they want to launch their TV service because they're going to face some

01:31:38   competition. And again, listeners are connected. Don't usually follow this kind of news. You

01:31:46   you should go listen to the upstream segment on Upgrade,

01:31:50   which is the podcast by Myke and Jason

01:31:52   because they do an excellent job

01:31:54   describing this media landscape these days.

01:31:58   I don't know.

01:32:00   I feel like Apple needs to be on the Echo,

01:32:02   but they don't wanna comment on this integration.

01:32:05   And we will see more and more of this stuff

01:32:08   over the next few years.

01:32:10   But it feels, I am with you, it feels strange.

01:32:14   There's something strange about it.

01:32:16   So when poking around the Apple's website and like on the music page on features, they

01:32:21   say Apple music players on all of your devices and it has PC, Android, Sonos listed there.

01:32:27   So you would expect to see in a couple of weeks that will also say Amazon Echo products,

01:32:33   right?

01:32:34   Okay. So and will they say so you can ask Alexa to play your music?

01:32:39   Now you see, I'm assuming not, right? Like I feel like that might be a bridge too far.

01:32:45   I don't want to mention that. Well, they speak the unspeakable name on apple.com.

01:32:51   God, that would be so interesting. I tell you what, if they have anything like that,

01:32:57   that's how you know Amazon are in the driving seat of this one. Right? If the word Alexa

01:33:03   is listed on any apple.com page, I would be surprised if it even made it to a support

01:33:10   document.

01:33:11   I mean there has to be a support document somewhere. They have support documents for

01:33:15   Android for Sonos, I think.

01:33:17   No one reads those but me. It's fine.

01:33:19   Steven reads them. So, I don't know. We'll see. So, also weird. Starting the week of

01:33:27   December 17, is this going to be like a staged rollout of some kind?

01:33:31   Probably. Yeah. It'll show up in your...

01:33:34   That's how it ends up, like, yeah. Europe in like January 2024.

01:33:38   - I think even the US, Amazon has done that before

01:33:41   with new features, they sort of show up in the helper app

01:33:45   on iOS, not for everybody at the same time.

01:33:47   So I think it'll be over a couple days.

01:33:49   You'll get it or you won't and then you'll have it later.

01:33:52   I'm looking forward to trying this out.

01:33:54   I only have one Amazon Echo left now that we have

01:33:57   two HomePods and slowly overtaking the Echo.

01:34:01   I was paying for the Amazon streaming music service deal

01:34:06   that you could hook up to the Echo that was better

01:34:07   than the free one, and I've canceled that.

01:34:09   I'll put Apple Music on that Echo,

01:34:11   and probably that Echo's gonna get replaced

01:34:14   by HomePod at some point.

01:34:15   Next time I can get one less

01:34:17   than Apple's ridiculous asking price.

01:34:20   But I think this is a smart move on Apple's part,

01:34:23   and I'm glad to see 'em do it.

01:34:25   I'm glad to see them be able to shed the idea

01:34:28   that everything they have to do is filter through hardware,

01:34:30   that if they want their services to grow,

01:34:32   they need to decouple it from actual objects they sell.

01:34:35   And that's exciting.

01:34:36   It's a change, but it's I think a positive one.

01:34:39   Well, I think that does it for this week, gentlemen.

01:34:42   All right, if you wanna find links to stuff

01:34:45   we talked about this week, you can head over

01:34:47   to our website, relay.fm/connected/221.

01:34:52   While you're there, you can send us an email

01:34:54   with any feedback or follow-up.

01:34:56   You can do that on Twitter as well.

01:34:59   Myke is there as I-M-Y-K-E.

01:35:01   Myke is the host of a bunch of great shows

01:35:04   here at relay.fm.

01:35:05   Go check some other fine programming out.

01:35:08   You can find Federico on Twitter @vitiici,

01:35:11   V-I-T-I-C-C-I, and he is the editor-in-chief

01:35:14   of MacStories.net.

01:35:16   You can find me there as ismh, and I write 512pixels.net.

01:35:21   I'd like to thank our sponsors this week,

01:35:22   Away, Pingdom, and Luna Display.

01:35:25   And until next week, guys, say goodbye.

01:35:28   - Arrivederci.

01:35:29   - Super, one quick thing.

01:35:31   I would like to add my congratulations to you, Steven,

01:35:34   on joining MacPower users. Federico said everything I would have wanted to say last week, but

01:35:39   I'm very, very excited. Katie has been wonderful and we're sorry to see her go, but I'm excited

01:35:46   to see what you bring to that show as well. So cheerio!

01:35:48   Thanks, man. Adios!