Weekly digest - 2019.43


MacBook Pro 16' imminent release?

According to DigiTimes new 16-inch MacBook Pro could be released by the end of October. At the moment, there is no information about any Apple's event, so people are speculating whether Apple is going to just release new laptop model together with Mac Pro.

It looks like the rumors about imminent release might be true. In the latest beta of the macOS 10.15.1, people found images of the 16-inch MacBook. New model looks to be slightly bigger than 15-inch predecessor, and has noticeably smaller screen bezel.


Image credits: MacGeneration

Weekly digest - 2019.34


Gamescom 2019

Here is the list of more interesting games presented during Gamescom:

Android 10

Google has changed the naming convention of their mobile operating system. After years of using alphabet letters, also associated with funny names of sweets, company decided to change the naming convention to numbers.

I was wondering how Google would name the Android after the Z version.  I got the answer sooner than expected 😅 The Android's naming convention was a really cool idea from marketing perspective. But  from practical point of view it was confusing to the users, so I'm surprised that happened now, but overall it is a good decision.

D23 Expo Panel

This week Disney hold its annual conference. This year the main focus was of course on the new streaming service. You can watch the Star Wars segment yourself here.

Star Wars Episode IX: The raise of Skywalker

There is no new news about the movie, similarly to previous movies, Disney waits with the marketing campaign till late September/early October. But we got short new footage and new poster.

The Mandalorian

It looks like The Mandalorian is one of the most important projects for Disney+, so we got a bunch of cool news:

Obi-Wan Kenobi TV Series

Yes! It is happening! During the D23 Kathleen Kennedy and Ewan McGregor officially confirmed that Obi-Wan Kenobi TV Series is coming to Disney+.  So far, we know that all the scripts have been written, and it will begin filming in 2020.

The Clone Wars

Unfortunately we didn't get any new news beside the release window. The last season of the Clone Wars is premiering in February 2020.

Cassian Andor Series

There is no new information about the show. It is currently in preproduction and scheduled to shoot next year.

Other news

Here is the list of other interesting announcements and news from D23:

Spider-Man is leaving MCU

Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige will not produce next Spider-Man movies, which basically means that Spider-Man will no longer be part of the MCU. According to Deadline, the reasoning behind this decision is a dispute between Sony - which holds the rights to the character - and Disney - Marvel’s parent company - over revenue sharing from films.

This is a sad news, because the last 2 Spider-Man movies perfectly tied into the MCU making this universe reacher. According to some rumors the negotiations between Sony and Disney are still in progress, so maybe after current fans outrage, companies will find solution that will make everyone happy.

Weekly digest - 2019.25


Pixel 4

Google just tweeted an image of the Pixel 4, a phone that has not been officially announced and will not ship until October. This is probably Google's answer to a lot of leaks surrounding this phone. It might be unusual, but in my opinion, it is very smart move. As people already saw the phone, they might as well see it in high definition photo.

Also there another aspect of this "leak". As you can see, the new Pixel 4 has square camera bump, almost the same as new iPhone suppose to have. I'm wondering whether Google is trying to say, hey we were first.

iPhone 2020

We didn't even get this year's iPhone, but we already have rumors about its successor. According to analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, Apple is planning to release 3 models:

  • High-end 5.4' with OLED display and 5G,
  • High-end 6.7' with OLED display and 5G,
  • Low-end 6.1' with OLED display.

It looks like the equivalent of the current iPhone XS will be downsized, where equivalent of the iPhone XS Max will be even bigger. The XR model will be untouched in terms of size, but it will gain the OLED display.

To be honest, I don't like those changes. The current size of the iPhone XS is perfect for me, and I don't want to get neither bigger or smaller phone.  

New MacBooks

The Eurasian Economic Commission database is amazing source if you want to know what companies are planing to release. This time the information about several models of portable computers from Apple have pop up.  

As 15' MacBook Pros have already been refreshed, it means that probably the 12' MacBook, MacBook Air or even 13' MacBook Pro are going to get the update.  Also, there are rumors about brand new 16' MacBook Pro, but I personally doubt we are going to see it this year.


Image credits: Google

Weekly digest - 2019.23


WWDC 2019 is over. Now, it's time to summarised the new things that have been announced.

iOS 13

As always we got a new version of the iOS. Last year, Apple focused on bug fixes and performance, this year we got a new features. Here is the list of the major changes coming this September:

  • Dark Mode,
  • Improved Photos and Camera apps,
  • Improved privacy and security,
  • Sign In with Apple,
  • New Maps app,
  • Improved voice of Siri powered by neural TTS (Text to Speech),
  • New Memoji and Memoji Stickers,
  • QuickPath - a new Swype keyboard,
  • New Reminders app,
  • Redesign CarPlay
  • Faster unlocking with FaceID  and faster app launches,

Those are the major changes. If you want to see what else have changed, check out this list or this video.

iPadOS

When new iPad Pros came out, people unanimously agreed that the raw power of the hardware was limited by the operating system. During WWDC, Apple acknowledge this problem, and addressed it by creating a new operating system - iPadOS. Although iPadOS is, right now, the iOS 13, Apple added some cool new features, which might be the first step into creating an iPad a true device that can replace a computer:

  • Slide Over and Split View,
  • Multiple instances of the same application,
  • App Exposé,
  • New Home Screen with widgets,
  • New Tool Palette for Apple Pencil,
  • Full-Page Markup allows to take screenshots of entire document or website,
  • Brand new text editing gestures,
  • Floating keyboard,
  • Sidecar allows to extend workspace by using an iPad as a second Mac display,
  • Redesigned Files App with support for external drives and file servers,
  • Mouses are now supported,
  • Safari on iPad is now a desktop class browser with download manager,
  • And it also contains all the changes introduced in iOS 13.

Those are only the major changes. The full list is available here.

This is huge release for iPad. Apple tackled most of the complaints people had after iPad Pro premiere.

macOS 10.15

Latest version of the mac operating system is named Catalina. Like the rest, it also comes with cool new features:

  • iTunes is gone and will be replaced by 3 separate applications for Music, Podcasts and TV,
  • Supported iPad applications can be run natively on macOS thanks to project Catalyst (formerly known as Marzipan),
  • Sidecar allows to extend workspace by using an iPad as a second Mac display,
  • ScreenTime is now also built into macOS,
  • FindMy combine functionality of Find My iPhone and Fid My Friends,
  • Approve with Apple Watch allows to authenticate or approve operations on the Mac from the Apple Watch,
  • Voice control  allows to control the Mac with voice commands,
  • Notes and reminders app has been redesigned,
  • macOS comes with ZSH as a default shell instead of Bash.

The full list of changes is available here.

watchOS 6

Changes made to watchOS as not as spectacular as for other systems, but they are definitely the nice step forward:

  • AppStore for watch allows to install apps independently from iPhone,
  • Activity Trends allows to track activity progress over time,
  • Cycle tracking is a new app dedicated for women,
  • Hearing health monitors the level of noise and alert a user when it's too loud,
  • And as always new watch faces, but still no custom ones 😢.

New Mac Pro

Apple has finally showed us the new Mac Pro. Apple listened to criticism and delivered truly powerful and modular computer. The top specification is mind-blowing:

  • 28-Core 2.5GHz Intel Xeon W with Turbo Boost up to 4.4GHz
  • 1.5TB of DDR4 ECC RAM,
  • 2 AMD Radeon Pro Vega II Duo cards with total of 128GB of memory,
  • 4TB SSD,
  • 1.4 KW PSU,
  • Eight PCI Express expansion slots,
  • Afterburner card for accelerating ProRes and ProRes RAW footage manipulation,
  • I/O card with 2 USB3 and 2 thunderbolt ports,
  • Two 10Gb Ethernet ports,
  • 802.11ac Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 5.0,
  • Built-in speaker and 3.5 mm headphone jack.

This computer is a beats. It's both luxurious and powerful at the same time. Unfortunately not many people will be able to afford this computer. Even the base model starts at $6000, so the maxed out version will be around $30k. Despite the price, I'm really glad to see that Apple listened and created both modular and powerful computer.

Pro Display XDR

Alongside with Mac Pro Apple also announced new Display. Here is the specification:

  • 32-inch display
  • Resolution: 6016 x 3384 pixels (6K)
  • Brightness: 1000 nits sustained, 1600 nits peak,
  • Contrast ratio: 1,000,000:1,
  • Color: P3 wide color gamut, 10-bit depth for 1.073 billion colors,

This monitor, with both specification and pricing, is definitely dedicated for professionals. The version with standard glass costs $5999 and the version Nano-texture (antireflective) glass costs $6999. Both prices are only for the displays as the stand is not included in the box. The dedicated stand costs $999 and visa adapter "only" $199.

Lack of the stand caused a small outrage over the Internet. As I mentioned before, this monitor is dedicated for professionals and apparently selling products without obvious elements is a common practice 🙁


Image credits: Apple

Weekly digest - 2019.20


2019 iPhone design

Mark Gurman tweeted a photo of alleged case molds for upcoming iPhones. Those molds align with previous rumors and shows much bigger, square camera bump. The bigger bump could be justified on the next iPhone XS ans XS Max, which are suppose to get 3 rear cameras, but XR model, despite the rumors about having only 2 cameras, also has square bump, almost the same size as XS will have.

Next Star Wars movies

Last week we got confirmation of the next Star Wars trilogy. This week, Bob Iger confirmed the rumors that David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, Games of Thrones show runners, will create next movie.  I'm stoked to see next movies, but looking at the turmoil the last season of Games of Thrones created I'm also a little bit worried.

Beside this, we also got more detailed release dates:

  • Part 1 - 16th December 2022
  • Part 2 - 20th December 2024
  • Part 3 - 18th December 2026

3rd Star Wars TV show

Bob Iger also revealed that during 3 years break from the movies we will get 3 Star Wars TV shows. So far we know about The Mandalorian and Cassian Andor series. The third one was a surprise and becomes an interesting mystery.

App Store Monopoly Lawsuit Against Apple

The U.S. Supreme Court decided to proceed with the class action lawsuit against Apple. The lawsuit was filed in 2011 by some iPhone users who believe that Apple violates federal antitrust laws by requiring apps to be sold only through  the App Store. This allows Apple to collects a 30% cut from all purchases, which leads to inflated prices of the applications.

Long story short, iPhone users believe that apps would be priced lower outside of the App Store, as Apple's 30 percent cut would not be calculated into  prices.

I have mixed filings about this. I agree that 30% cut is a big one and it didn't change since the beginning of the AppStore, but I also doubt that apps would be priced differently outside of the AppStore.  


Image credits: Mark Gurman