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iPhone pre-orders, iOS 8, Tim Cook Interview + More
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Podcast: Cloud security tips, TheFappening, Apple Event, plus more
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Other World Computing

Other World Computing






Whiskey Lately

Podcast: App Store Get vs Free, Pappy Van Winkle, CoD, Plus More!

iTunes stops calling apps free and instead calls them get. We also talk about the latest Call of Duty Advanced Warfare. And we crack open a bottle of Pappy Van Winkle.

New Twelve South adjustable HiRise Deluxe matches your device

Twelve South Tuesday announced a new edition of their HiRise stand. The stand fits the iPhone, iPad Air, and iPad mini. The Deluxe model introduces an improved adjustment design that includes a dial to change its depth. The HiRise Deluxe also is also available in gold, in addition to black and silver. Along with matching designs for the iPhone and iPad, the HiRise Deluxe also includes a color-matched Lightning cable.

The HiRise Deluxe has a suggested retail price of $59.99. The original HiRise is still available for $34.99.

Apple’s Eddie Cue goes shopping with Apple Pay

KTLA did a segment with Apple’s Eddie Cue using Apple Pay. Cue and the station’s Rich Dumuro went to a Santa Monica mall. They stated at Panera for breakfast, then went shopping at Bloomingdales, a Disney Store, and of course an Apple Store.

The segment is basically a commercial for Apple. They go through the pros of Apple Pay, but even more important, they highlight retailers who are participating in Apple’s new payment system.

I actually didn't know you can order via the Panera App, pay, and then just walk into the store to pick up. That's neat. It's also interesting that Apple is working to get past the need to sign for larger purchases.

OWC announces ThunderBay 4 mini portable Thunderbolt 2 RAID

Other World Computing Monday announced a smaller 2.5-inch RAID solution utilizing Thunderbolt 2. While a portable solution, the drive still requires external power, so we’re really looking at a smaller, quieter footprint for external storage.

There are two flavors of the ThunderBay 4 mini with either SSD or HDD options. Each enclosure can house 4 disks, whether you’re prioritizing speed or capacity. The HDD configuration supports up to 8 TB of data and sustained speeds of up to 531 MB/sec. The SSD configuration goes up to 4 TB and impressive sustained speeds of up to 1284 MB/sec.

Both products come with a 3 year warranty. An optional version of both these models are available with SoftRAID 5 to implement a RAID 5 configuration.

Pricing ranges from $599 to $895 for the HDD config and $799 to $2399 for the SSD. If you want to DIY your own kit, a bare enclosure is available for $379.

Video: Did you know your Mac is tracking all your downloads? Here's how to fix that.

This blew me away that OS X maintains a log of every file downloaded regardless of browser. This tip video shows up to clear that log and also how to automate the process to be done regularly.

List Query
sqlite3 ~/Library/Preferences/com.apple.LaunchServices.QuarantineEventsV* 'select LSQuarantineDataURLString from LSQuarantineEvent' | sort

Delete Query
sqlite3 ~/Library/Preferences/com.apple.LaunchServices.QuarantineEventsV* 'delete from LSQuarantineEvent'

Site tracks Apple Stores replacing bent iPhones

If your iPhone 6 or 6 Plus is afflicted by the bends, this site linked here might be of interest. The site is attempting to track which Apple retail stores are willing to replace a bent iPhone. People are rating their attempts as refused to replace, replaced after arguing or replaced with little hassle. So, there you go.

OWC announces 1 TB upgrades for MacBook Air

Other World Computing last week released a new Aura SSD upgrade for 2010, 2011, and 2012 MacBook Air models. The upgrade allows for an impressive internal storage increase of 1TB.

Other sizes are available for 480GB, 240GB, and 120GB. The Aura upgrade can be bundled with OWC's Envoy enclosure which allows you to repurpose your old SSD as external storage.

Pricing for the 1TB upgrade is $549 or $579 w/ the Envoy kit.

Apple website deregisters iMessage on devices

Joe Rossignol for 8 to 5 Mac
For those that have switched to another smartphone and no longer own an iPhone, the website provides a field where you can enter your phone number, receive a confirmation code and enter that code to confirm your iMessage deregistration. Apple also reiterates instructions on how to deregister and turn off iMessage if you still have an iPhone.

Basically this walks customers through how to remove your iMessage ID from a device. Instructions cover how to do it whether you have a different iPhone by swapping the SIM or otherwise using a text confirmation on a new non-Apple device. This of course is if you forget to deactivate iMessage before moving off of the old device.

Trolling AirDrop

Josh Lowensohn for The Verge:
Each day I get on the train to make the half hour voyage into San Francisco for work, I am surrounded by people using their phones. Many have iPhones or iPads, and have a setting turned on that lets me send them unsolicited files through AirDrop. Where Apple envisioned it as a way to send useful files and websites to friends and acquaintances, I use it to send photos of sloths to strangers. And not just any sloths, but sloths wearing spacesuits.

That's pretty good.

Microsoft rolls out new iPhone Offices, updates for iPad

Today we’re taking the next major step to bring Office to everyone, on every device, and I’m excited to announce that Office apps customers love are coming to Android tablets with the start of our Office for AndroidTM tablet Preview. We’re also delivering Word, Excel, and PowerPoint apps for iPhone® and updates for the iPad apps–to ensure a consistently beautiful and productive Office experience on every device.

This is a big update for the Office platform. Users can now create and edit Office documents on any device without requiring a 365 subscription. While additional features are still only available to 365 subscribers, the basic functionality should be big for those working in collaboration with others.

Recent Articles

Twelve South releases SurfacePad for iPhone 6/6 Plus

SurfacePad for iPhone 6 and 6 Plus is a premium quality, buttery soft Napa leather jacket designed exclusively to protect iPhone without adding bulk and weight. Razor thin and astonishingly light, this luxury leather cover protects the front and back of your iPhone from everyday hazards...

Inside the SurfacePad are slots for two cards, whether be an ID, credit/debit card, or something like a transit card. The SurfacePad comes in black, tan, red, or white. Pricing is $39.99 for the iPhone 6 version and $49.99 for the iPhone 6 Plus

Mac OS X Hints site future uncertain

Founder Rob Griffiths on the end of Mac OS X Hints:
It’s been over 45 days since the last new hint appeared on the site. There is no way for new users to sign up for an account. There’s been one new comment posted in the last two days. A sidebar box proudly proclaims Latest Mountain Lion Hints. The site design, logo, and icons were last updated when I worked for Macworld, over four years ago. To paraphrase a Star Trek character, “it’s dead, Jim.”

IDG owns the site and its future is unknown, but for all practical purposes it seems over. Couple the fact IDG gutted Macworld, I'd guess there's not a lot of energy for OS X Hints.

I've been a big fan of the site over the years. While new content isn't apparently rolling in, the site is a treasure of old content that's still helpful. Hopefully it at least continues as an archive.

Jawbone UP3 adds on more sensors

Jawbone this week announced the third iteration of its UP fitness tracker. The UP3 adds additional sensors to further enhance tracking. The device tracks ambient and skin temperatures, heart rate, and a new tri-axis accelerometer. The UP3 is able to identify different activities for recording like tennis vs walking or running, for example.

The announcement follows new products from Fitbit, Microsoft, and Apple’s watch, among others in the space. 2015 should be another busy year for health/fitness.

The UP3 is expected to ship later this year for $179.99

Macworld looks at Pioneer's CarPlay upgrade

Susie Ochs for Macworld:
CarPlay is cool, and if I was buying a car that had it, I would be stoked to use it—but I’m not going to upgrade the stereo that’s in my 2006 Subaru to this aftermarket Pioneer system.

The kit lists for $1400 and retails it seems for under $1000, so it's a major aftermarket upgrade for your car. Other cheaper options are out there or will be out there that may make some more sense.

CarPlay i think will be more attractive in well-equipped new models already featuring an expensive in-dash system. Still, the option is available for those willing.

$99 iPhone 6 expected at Sam's Club

Deal site GottaDeal.com posted a flyer for a one-day sales event at Sam's Club. The sale is for only 11/15 and features $100 discounts on the iPhone 6 and iPad Air.

Pricing with contract for the iPhone 6 is $99, $199, and $299 for the 16 GB, 64 GB and 128 GB models. The flyer indicates only 40-50 phones per store.

Also in the flyer is $100 off of a 16 GB iPad Air.

Retailers keep getting more and more aggressive with Black Friday style ads. Odds are this Sam's Club special will likely only be the first featuring the iPhone and iPad this holiday season.

Microsoft announces Office 2015, releases Updated Outlook

Microsoft Friday announced a version of Outlook for 365 customers along with plans for next year.

Outlook for Mac brings greater compatibility with Exchange services and similar experience across all platforms including the OWA app for iOS.

As far as Office, the company said it expected to ship Office 2015 for Mac in the second half of next year:

In the first half of 2015 we will release a public beta for the next version of Office for Mac, and in the second half of 2015 we will make the final release available. Office 365 commercial and consumer subscribers will get the next version at no additional cost, and we will release a perpetual license of Office for Mac in the same timeframe.

Trent Reznor working on project for Apple

In an interview with Billboard:
It's related to that. Beats was bought by Apple, and they expressed direct interest in me designing some products with them. I can't go into details, but I feel like I'm in a unique position where I could be of benefit to them. That does mean some compromises in terms of how much brain power goes toward music and creating. This is very creative work that's not directly making music, but it's around music.

Reznor was chief creative officer of Beats Music.

Seth Rogan expected to play Woz in upcoming Steve Jobs movie

Dave McNary for Variety:
Seth Rogen has been set to star as Steve Wozniak opposite Christian Bale in Sony’s Steve Jobs biopic, sources confirm.

As noted Christian Bale is confirmed for the title role based off of Walter Isaacson's biography. Danny Boyle will direct. The movie is expected to tell the story of Steve Jobs through behind the scenes drama of three major product launches.

Tim Cook on being gay

Tim Cook essay in Business Week
Being gay has given me a deeper understanding of what it means to be in the minority and provided a window into the challenges that people in other minority groups deal with every day. It’s made me more empathetic, which has led to a richer life. It’s been tough and uncomfortable at times, but it has given me the confidence to be myself, to follow my own path, and to rise above adversity and bigotry. It’s also given me the skin of a rhinoceros, which comes in handy when you’re the CEO of Apple.

Powerful words.

Twelve South bring BookArc stand to Mac Pro

Twelve South announced Wednesday a new version of its BookArc stand for the Mac Pro. The stand holds the Mac Pro vertically.

BookArc takes the height requirement of Mac Pro from 14 inches standing upright, including space for ventilation, down to 7.5 inches resting on its side atop the chrome stand. This reduced height means Mac Pro fits in a lot more locations, including inside pro gear racks, cabinets or on studio shelves. Set inside a racked studio cabinet, Mac Pro on a BookArc takes up 5 rack spaces — instead of the 8 spaces in the upright position.

Twelve South notes that Apple documents that the Mac Pro can be used horizontally. The BookArc for Mac Pro sells for $59.95.

Walgreens and Apple Pay

Fitbit bring out three new fitness wristband

Fitbit this week unveiled three new products to its fitness tracker lineup. With some CES info rolling in, I got a good idea something was coming from and it looks like they want to get the word out before the holidays. It looks like the new products retool their Flex line with additional features and will take on Apple’s new watch.

The Charge and Charge HR look like an update to the Flex wrist concept. Returning with the Charge is LED readout, which was an option for a period on the Flex platform. The second Charge HR stands for hear rate and offers 24/7 monitoring.

The third product is the Fitbit Surge watch, which looks the most compelling. The Surge features a built-in GPS, which Apple’s watch lacks without being tethered to an iPhone. Other features you’d expect include Caller ID, text readout, and music controls. Also it features eight sensors in a combination of accelerometer, gyroscope, compass, and light sensor.

Pricing is $130, $150, and $250 for the Charge, Charge HR and Surge. The Charge is available now and Charge HR and Surge are expected to start shipping in 2015.

Apple Pay sparks rift between merchants and credit cards

Objections to Apple Pay aren’t actually about convenience, reliability, or security—they are about a burgeoning war between a consortium of merchants, led by Walmart, and the credit card companies. Rite-Aid, CVS, Walmart, Best-Buy and about 50 other retailers have been working on their own mobile payments system, called CurrentC. Unlike Apple Pay, which works in conjunction with Visa, Mastercard, and American Express, CurrentC cuts out the credit card networks altogether. The benefit to the merchants is clear: They would save the swipe fees they pay to the credit card companies now, which average about two percent of the cost of transactions.

This reminds me of when Apple got into it with magazine publishers over Newsstand. At that time, Apple pushed for customer privacy. That stance was on the side of consumers.

In this case merchants want to impose restrictions on their customers that are in their on interest. It’s clear the credit card companies and Apple have a profit angle here, but it also aligns with consumer interests. I can understand why merchants want to implement their own payment system. All these swipe fees certainly add up and either eat away at profits or makes it more difficult to compete on price alone. One option is the merchants could offer discounts for a particular payment method like cash or this CurrentC. That would at least give consumers an option for their privacy and convenience other than shopping elsewhere.

Podcast: End of Macworld Expo? Mac Hack, Jobs movie + more

Tool and guides emerge to upgrade older Macs for Yosemite Continuity/Handoff

Someone in the MacRumors forums put together a installation tool for activating Yosemite handoff features on older Macs. The feature officially requires Bluetooth 4.0 LE and is limited to only a handful of the most recent Macs. In addition to the tool, the community is sharing info and experiences to retrofit older Macs for this feature.

The tool presented can override Apple’s settings and enable the features in some Macs such as the 2011 MacBook Air and Mac mini. Older Macs can also add the feature, but it will require some surgery to replace the Broadcom Bluetooth module.

I’ve been curious about this and plan to try getting this going on my hackintosh. I’d also like to get it going on some older Macs, although it seems some are easier than others. Some upgrades simply require a PCIe adapter card and pop it in, others are more involved. Kits are available, but they can be a little pricy.

Obviously any adventures require a steady, confident hand and backups.

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