The waiting combo. It’s the story of a lonely couple waiting for something to happen. Tomorrow they will come together at last.

Microsoft: Wow. Your Turn, Apple.

Microsoft’s announcements this week are nothing less than impressive. Microsoft is showing courage. Their Surface are striking. These things will probably be hot as hell (pun intended, thanks to Intel Inside). I’m hoping users will have a better experience than many of my colleague who had their Surface replaced in the last year because of over heating issues. Stylus On the surface (pun intended) may not work as well as the Apple Pencil on the iPad. Apple is at their best in that regard. Yet, we have to give them credits for what they are doing. They are iterating with more than incremental updates. They try new things. It’s interesting to see Microsoft aligning itself with Apple strategy: vertical integration (hardware + software: Windows) with a yearly release schedule. Designed for Windows 11. Well done.

Now, looking forward to Apple’s next announcement: the MacBook Pro “redesign”. Don’t expect anything close to what Microsoft is doing. But expect Apple to reintroduce the HDMI port and the SD Card reader. According the latest leaks.

Tim Would Love Stopping the Leaks

Of course the memo from Tim Cook about leakers is being leaked. It’s funny to read a leaked memo from Tim Cook expressing his concern and frustration about leakers working within Apple. After reading it, I do think part of the message is for outside leakers too, knowing the memo would be… leaked.

On iOS 15 Early Adoption Rate

Compared to last’s year iOS 14, early numbers show a much slower adoption rate for iOS 15. The problem? Last year was about the iPhone experience getting widgets. That’s a very material change. This year? Even if widgets now come to the iPad, it is far less reaching than it was on the iPhone. Things like focus modes are not as flashy as widgets but are damn useful, to me at least.

Happy iOS 15 & iPadOS 15 to you all!

After a long summer of beta releases, today we get to see the final releases of iOS 15 and iPadOS 15. Are you feeling as excited as a few years ago at the same time? Personally, even if I think those are great iterative updates, I don’t. There is less to grab by developers it seems. I’m not expecting exciting new releases for any of my apps. What about yours?

The iterative Apple that delivers

If you think that this year’s updates from Apple are meh, I think, either you didn’t pay attention during the keynote or you’re simply bored. You may not like the iterative nature of Apple under Tim Cook, maybe you forgot to remember that the smartphone (and to some degree) the smartwatch are mature products. Since Apple is paying attention to what the majority of people actually care about, improving battery life, adding more storage, keeping prices steady, not having to wait three months to get a new device, stop expecting folding iPhone to prove Apple is still innovating.

There, I said it.

The future of the App Store According to Marco Arment

One of the best recent take on the possible future of the App Store.

Regarding IAP purchases:

Most apps will be required to also offer IAP side-by-side with any external methods

Many games will offer both IAP and external purchases, with the external choice offering a discount, bonus gems, extra loot boxes, or other manipulative tricks to optimize the profitability of casino games for children

External purchase methods will evolve to be almost as convenient as IAP

The payment-fraud doomsday scenarios argued by Apple and many fans mostly won’t happen

Now, App Store side-loading and alternative App Stores:

Facebook would soon have apps that bypassed App Review installed on the majority of iPhones in the world.

Without the threat of App Review to keep them in check, Facebook’s apps would become even more monstrous than they already are.

Alternative app stores would be even worse. Rather than offering individual apps via side-loading, Facebook could offer just one: The Facebook App Store.

Maybe Google would bring the Play Store to iOS and offer a unified SDK to develop a single codebase for iOS and Android, effectively making every app feel like an Android app

Media conglomerates that own many big-name properties, like Disney, might each have their own app stores for their high-profile apps.

Most developers would probably need to start submitting our apps to multiple app stores, each with its own rules, metadata, technical requirements, capabilities, approval delays, payment processing, stats, crash reports, ads, promotion methods, and user reviews.

In a few words: what a fucking mess.

I don’t expect side-loading or alternative app stores to become possible, and I’m relieved, because that is not a future I want for iOS.

I’m not so sure this won’t happen, but I’m sure that’s something I don’t want too. If only Apple could better read the room’s temperature and budge a tad.

Courage, Apple?

John Gruber on Apple’s lack of courage regarding vaccination of their employees:

So where’s Apple on this? Why isn’t Apple requiring proof of vaccination for employees, including for retail employees and customers? Why reserve courageous decisions only for removing headphone jacks?

Boom.

Photo by Marisol Benitez on Unsplash

On VMware Not Supporting the Mac Pro

VMware:

Due to various challenges of COVID-19 and the recent announcement from Apple on their transition away from x86 to Apple Silicon, VMware will no longer pursue hardware certification for the Apple 2019 Mac Pro 7,1 for ESXi.

This is sad news and probably not a surprising news. In early 2020, I came close to buy an entry-level Mac Pro in order to build a lab-in-a-box for experimenting different environments and software, all related to my work. I started this thread on my blog about my SDDCbox project, and was nearly ready to make the decision. Somehow, priorities shifted and I dropped my project entirely.

It is one thing to see new apps being non-native to the Mac, like 1Password 8 and maybe the upcoming Readwise Reader app, but it is another when a major player like VMware no longer consider the Mac as a viable platform for things like ESXi. Apple’s transition to its own silicon has obviously something to do with it. The Mac has never been more popular than today, yet, on the software side, I feel there is a “malaise”.

The next #AppleEvent is coming!

Just in time for the upcoming Apple event, my rumours site has been updated to reflect the most recent rumours. New iPhone. New Apple Watch. New AirPods. iOS 15. iPadOS 15. No MacBook Pro updates. That is all.

The (short) story of a scratch

Here is a picture of my 2020 MacBook Air that I recently bought. I wanted to use it as a banner somewhere, but this visual defect on the Apple logo put an end to my intention. Then, I started to think how bad things go for Apple these days and I came to the conclusion that this scratch perfectly illustrates the current status of Apple as a symbol. What a useless post. 🙂🤦🏻‍♂️

A thought on the Apple Watch Series 7

In recent days or weeks, rumours are rampant on the updated design of the Apple Watch: bigger but flatter screen, boxier design are the main themes, with no new health sensors. I’m not so sure about the boxy design. It’s ok for the iPad or the iPhone but for a watch? To me, it could make it less approachable, less jewelry. We’ll see in a few weeks. There is one thing that I’d like to point out about the Series 7: Apple is not only presumably launching an updated design, they are creating a new price point. The bigger screen helps legitimate this. They have been doing this since Tim Cook is CEO.

And so it begins. What’s next?

According to the Wall Street Journal:

South Korea today passed a bill that bans Apple and Google from requiring developers to use their own respective in-app purchasing systems, allowing developers to charge users using third-party payment methods

Now what? How will Apple respond? Will they create a different version of iOS for South Korea? Can they simply appeal this law, if such a thing is possible? How is this going to help other countries and parties to go after Apple’s practices? How much time will Apple be given to change its practices? Three months? A year? South Korea is probably a small market for Apple compared to other places in the world, but this new law seems like a tsunami in the making.

On Apple’s M1 MacBook Air energy efficiency

Funny and fascinating to see that 95% of the time, the four energy-efficient CPU cores are doing all the legwork on my M1 MacBook Air. I rarely see the performance cores doing work for a long time.

While waiting for iCloud Private Relay…

I’m using NextDNS.io for a better web experience… not the same but it does a great job of making the web more privacy friendly and a lot faster too. Too bad that we will have to wait for iOS 15.1 or later for iCloud Private Relay. Each year there are features that get dropped from the initial release… remember iMessage in the cloud, anyone?

Late to the party, but…

Just got this yesterday. You know what this mean, right? Well, maybe not. Anyway, I’m a bit late to the MacBook Air party, but this thing is probably THE best Mac Apple ever made. It’s not the best Air Apple ever made, though. A tad too big probably, yet so powerful. And this keyboard… a real and trusty keyboard. 🥰

I’m working on an essay about my new adventure in the MacBook Air land. Stay tuned.

If all goes well, I should be getting my CraftingMAChine today. 👈🏻 👨🏻‍💻 #macbookair #applesilicon #m1chip

About this “in-public” design

Gruber writing about how Apple mostly fixed Safari 15 on iPhone with beta 6 (emphasis is mine):

The unusual part is that we got to see Apple’s design process play out in public. The Safari team has been kept busy this summer. (There has to be one hell of backstory here, right?) There was a certain pessimism amongst some who perceived the problems with the original iOS 15 Safari design, simply because Apple seldom makes drastic UI changes between their unveiling at WWDC in June, and when they officially ship in the fall. But seldom isn’t never.

I’d love to read the behind-the-scene-story about this “in public” design process that we all witnessed. The Safari team surely scrambled to fix the design issues between beta 1 and beta 6… or was just all planned in advance? I bet on the former. The whole saga was unusual for Apple. They look less confident from a design perspective.

I love Safari 15 in beta 6. They nailed it, and it is an improvement compared to the pre-iOS 15 implementation.

When designers can’t decide…

iOS 15 beta 6 is out and Apple is making great progress with Safari on iPhone. For me, they finally hit the right notes. I think that’s the design they should have included since day one of iOS 15. Yet, I find it funny to see Apple put a new option in settings for those who prefer the pre-iOS 15 release. I guess it’s another case of “If you can’t decide which design is the best, just add another option in Settings so the user decide.”

We will have to wait for these… sadly.

SharePlay, ID Cards, App Privacy Report, Custom email domain, detailed 3D navigation in CarPlay, Legacy Contacts, Universal Control won’t ship with iOS 15.0 this fall. We’ll have to wait for an update later, like 15.1, 15.2 or even later. That’s a lot of stuff missing the deadline. I was looking forward to Legacy Contacts and Universal control… Apple is often a waiting game.

What a bizarre advice

A successful Apple investor, Paul Lane, had advice to give to other Apple investors, as reported on PED: buy Apple gear to return some money to Apple as a sign of appreciation and support. That’s the most bizarre advice I ever heard of from an investor. I would expect something along the line: buy low, sell high. I, personally, own a few Apple shares and a lot of their products. Yet, I don’t feel invested in a mission to show my support to Apple, either by buying shares or their products.

Switching to a weekly beta cycle this week? #ios15beta6 #apple

Apple’s cheap labour: concept creators

Parker Ortolani for 9to5Mac published a two-parts concept on a future version of macOS named Mammoth.

macOS Big Sur did a great job of refining the Mac desktop, but it didn’t fundamentally change any of its behavior. We’d like to see that change with the next version of macOS. With Monterey being mostly full of small refinements rather than big ideas, we’d expect Mammoth to be a monstrous release.

I’m using one of his screen design that pertains to widgets improvements. I recently wrote about those and Apple’s sad design decision to keep them in the notifications center for Big and Monterey. I think Ortolani’s design is interesting and plausible. Freedom of placement certainly makes the experience more satisfying. It’s so true they liberated widgets on iPad with iPadOS 15.

There is so much work going into these visual essays. I mean, there are release notes too! I often considered people doing these mockups has being Apple’s cheap labour. I wonder if Apple’s designers notice those.

On this unexpected and mysterious macOS Big Sur 11.5.2 update

Dear Apple, as an owner of an M1 Mac mini, a MacBook Air and an iMac, don’t you think that I’m entitled for an explanation about what does this update fix? I think I do.

Excited for a… keyboard

I got the new Magic Keyboard with Touch ID. I chose the one without the numeric keypad; the desk space being scarce. Setting this thing up took one minute. I had to read the (slim) manual as I wasn’t sure how the pairing would work: connect the keyboard to my M1 Mac mini with the provided USB-C to Lightning cable, quickly press the M1 Mac mini power button two times to trigger the setup process for Touch ID configuration (Bluetooth is automatically configured). The Touch ID setup screen looks similar to the one on the iPhone when settings up Touch ID for the first time. It’s one of the best Apple keyboard; keys feeling is similar to the previous generation. Touch ID is the star of the show here, and I love it. Only works with M1 Macs. This Magic Keyboard brings to the Mini, a feature otherwise only available to the MacBooks (and the M1 iMac). That’s why I bought the keyboard. It’s not cheap, but convenience has a price for Apple.