Tuesday Morning News

Bloomberg’s latest report claims the steady increase of Apple-designed CPUs — currently featured in everything from the AirPods, iPad Pro, and iMac — will soon lead to more Macs with Apple silicon. Apple is still dependent on third parties for the cellular modems used in iOS devices, and while we’re still a few years away from Apple discarding Intel CPUs in Macs, it’s hard not to see the writing on the wall.

If you didn’t believe the rumours Apple would be halting production of the iPhone X after just one year on the market, a new report from the supply chain says Apple has halved iPhone X production. “Disappointing holiday season sales” are the reason for the halved production targets, with the target now standing at 20 million iPhone X units for this quarter.

I’m not sure what the overall situation is with any possible iPhone SE refresh, because analyst Ming-Chi Kuo says it’s unlikely that any refresh — if one happens at all — will include a new form factor or any kind of hardware improvements such as wireless charging. The rumours for the 2018 iPhone lineup so far don’t seem to include an updated iPhone SE, despite the device’s relative popularity.

Apple has settled with Immersion over haptic feedback technologies. The terms of the settlement are confidential, but you can bet that there was some extraordinary number that now allows Apple to continue using haptic feedback within its range of devices.

Macworld tells us what Apple needs to do to establish its new video service. Recent deals struck for original programming make it pretty clear that Apple is working on something to do with video, and the most likely guess is that it will be some kind of video streaming service. While Apple’s current videos have been tacked onto Apple Music, it seems unlikely that will cut the mustard if they start offering a wider variety of videos that aren’t related to music.

By now, pretty much everyone agrees that iPads are computers. Well, mostly — MacStories still has a bunch of stuff they’d like to see move to the iPad from Macs, and arguably, the biggest one is multi-user support for iPads, although they’re not sure about how that fits into Apple’s overall plan for iOS and macOS to exist harmoniously.

The Verge says WhatsApp is the first third-party messaging app to support Apple’s CarPlay. You can’t browse existing messages when using WhatsApp in its CarPlay-enabled interface for obvious distraction reasons, but Siri will be able to read out new messages, and you’ll also be able to dictate and send new messages with some Siri assistance.

If you into gaming on your Mac but feel jealous of console and PC users who get access to push-button replay captures, RetroClip should be right up your alley. And unlike some of the PC versions of this software that I’ve tried, the technical notes for RetroClip doesn’t save to a scratch file on disk, instead capturing directly to a small portion of main memory. Of course, there’s a bunch of other uses for an always-on screen recorder, too.

Shahid Ahmad has been recommending Macs since 2001, but the one Mac he can’t recommend is the latest MacBook Pro. In his blog post, he writes with a heavy heart and a malfunctioning keyboard about the unreliable and divisive keyboard, the lack of an SD card slot, and the step backwards that is USB-C charging. More than a few of his gripes read like complaints, given the lack of explanation about why a particular decision doesn’t gel with his particular definition of “pro”, and there’s one that demonstrates his lack of understanding about the inner workings of the MacBook Pro, but there’s still some validity in the points that he brings up.

Meanwhile, a slightly older article from TechCrunch tells us about Apple’s design delirium. While we might all be questioning some of the recent design decisions that Apple has made, the fact of the matter is that for the most part, Apple still makes devices and software which are focused on functioning optimally for their given purpose.

Notable Replies

  1. I can live without an SD card slot (although it means carrying an SD card reader which is something else to lose) and USB-C charging isn’t as good I agree but (and I’ve been verbally swarmed for saying this elsewhere) that keyboard is just NOT good enough.

    It’s not a deal breaker, but it is the straw that broke the camels back (given the other changes that have been made to the MacBook Pro range over the last few years which have not only removed ports but also memory expansion).

    After more than a decade of using MacBook Pros (and 4 machines) I’m on my last MacBook Pro and that’s about to be gifted to a friend who’s laptop has died and who cannot afford a new one.

    It will be replaced with a boring, black… Dell (with i7, discrete graphics, SSD + HDD drives, IPS screen and 16Gb of RAM).

    I’m not giving up Apple, I’ve got iPhone, Apple TV, iPad and iPad mini and I think I’ll have a HomePod soon but the MacBook Pro… it’s just moved too far from it’s original ‘Pro’ design.

  2. Erwin says:

    Sounds very specific to his own experience and opinion - malfunctioning keyboard? Does he mean sticky keys from dust? SD card? USB-C charging?

    Personally mine has been a work horse, both at work and at home so far.

  3. The real killer for the MacBook Pro for me is the keyboard - it is by far and way the worst feeling keyboard I have ever used I simply cannot stand to use it.

Continue the discussion talk.appletalk.com.au

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