Podcast 542: They’re always listening

You’d be hard-pressed to find anyone in the world with an electronic device right now who isn’t concerned about a combination of criminal, troll, and overreaching government trying to crack their security and vacuum up their data. For some practical advice, host Glenn Fleishman is joined by Jonathan Zdzriarski, an iPhone forensics expert with extensive experience working with law enforcement, who is also the developer of the file-access-monitoring app, Little Flocker.

Glenn and Jonathan start with a brief follow-up on the Consumer Reports’ battery testing revision, and then discuss many ways of securing different aspects of your computing and networking setup.

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Podcast 540: Happy new year?

Another year, another podcast! This week Glenn and Susie are really glad everyone likes their AirPods, alarmed that we suddenly aren't supposed to use Preview for a thing it's usually really good at, and wondering what is going on in the testing labs at Consumer Reports. Here's hoping the rest of 2017 gets a little less weird.

Show notes

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Podcast 539: AirPods rock, but Siri still struggles

It’s almost Christmas, and the AirPods are on the naughty and the nice lists. Susie loves the build quality, the sound, even how they look like funky alien earrings. But using Siri for control—and pausing the music every single time!—is not a great solution, and starkly illustrates the problem of Apple treating its own apps and services better than everyone’s else’s.

Elsewhere, a report in Bloomberg has us all worried about the Mac upgrades we will or won’t get in 2017. Apple owns the smartwatch category, but is there much there there? And both Susie and Glenn had a hard time learning their left from their right, so don’t worry if that’s your struggle too.

We’ll be off next week, but look forward to podcasting again in 2017. Thanks for listening, and have wonderful, peaceful holidays.

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Podcast 538: Ermagherd ErrPerrrds

It’s a holiday miracle—AirPods are finally available to order, although shipping estimates have already slid to about six weeks, bah humbug. Macworld’s review should post next Monday.

Elsewhere, Susie’s incredibly excited about the single sign-on feature for Apple TV, since it’s given her access to the FX NOW app and, inside it, _every episode of The Simpsons, ever_. The TV app itself, new to tvOS this week, is probably going to be a lot more useful for cable subscribers than cord-cutters, and we hope it doesn’t become totally pointless for non-subscribers once Apple launches its own over-the-top service.

Plus, your Mac laptop will no longer provide estimates as to how long its battery might last, since it turns out those are pretty inaccurate, at least according to Apple. If you’re going to miss it, we hear iStat Menus is a way to keep it around.

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Podcast 537: Amazon Go or no?

How cool would it be to walk into a store, scanning a QR code off your phone when you enter, and then just taking things off the shelves and walking out? Your answer to that might vary based on your experiences in stores today—after all, the Apple Store lets you check yourself out with the iOS app, which can feel either freeing or like someone's about to tackle you before you reach the door. Amazon is experimenting with a convenience store that's staffed by sensors instead of a clerk, and Glenn and Susie have plenty of thoughts.

Elsewhere, we talk about iPhone 6s batteries, the slow death of Flash, the holy-crap-kind-of-confirmed Project Titan, mesh routers, giant batteries, and the craziest adapter chain yet.

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Podcast 536: Made in America

The days are getting shorter, the Thanksgiving leftovers are dwindling, and we still aren't able to buy AirPods, but one of these days we will be. Until then, we have a holiday potpourri of topics for you.

First up? Calendar spam, calendar spam, doing the things a calendar can. Then a video that will crash your iPhone (and no, it's not worth it), a new streaming service from AT&T, and the Apple Store doing right by customers with wonky iPhone 6s batteries or dead SSDs. Later, could Apple really make iPhones in America? And what's the best way to make Twitter less awful?

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Podcast 535: So long to AirPort?

There’s plenty to be thankful for in the Mac world, even if the rumor about Apple getting out of the AirPort game turns out to be true. Apple is lowering the rates for streaming video apps, which should help flesh out the TV.app we’re anticipating this December.

But it wouldn’t be a podcast if we didn’t find things to complain about, or freaky security stories. This week has both, from a tale of Safari malware to iCloud syncing call history on the sly, to a proof-of-concept hack that’s basically the dongle of death.

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