Podcast 545: Assault on batteries

Batteries. No one's ever really happy with them, but everything has one now and they all need charging. With the help of Macworld senior editor Roman Loyola, Gordon Ung of PCWorld went deep in testing the MacBook Pro's battery recently, and found it to be pretty darn good, typically besting the much larger battery in the last generation. And speaking of batteries, we have an extended public service announcement about never ever using a device that's bulging, because that means the battery is downright unsafe.

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iOS

Podcast 543: What’s up with WhatsApp

After last week's focus on security, this week Glenn and Susie...focus on security. Specifically, we discuss the smack of controversy around WhatsApp, and how to make it more secure. Elsewhere, Apple's fixing bugs in macOS, losing employees to Tesla, possibly building a manufacturing plant in the United States, and getting us excited with rumors about depth sensors in an upcoming iPhone.

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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.

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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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