The Fast-Tracking Edition Friday, November 8, 2019

Apple Rolls Out iOS 13.2.2 Update With Fix For Annoying Multitasking Bug, by Chris Welch, The Verge

Apple has just released iOS and iPadOS 13.2.2, with a fix for a frustrating bug that led apps to close in the background much quicker than usual. Even a jump between two apps could be enough for Safari windows to reload or to lose your place in a YouTube video. The issue is also fixed in the iOS 13.3 update that went into beta testing this week, but it’s great to see that Apple is fast-tracking a fix to all customers.

The Secretive Limits To Apple's Butterfly Keyboard Repair Programl, by Michael Peterson, AppleToolBox

As spgremlin notes in their post, there is virtually no public information about certain predefined limits on the keyboard repair program.

On the other hand, there may be an explanation for the “policy” in state laws. Many states across the U.S., and other countries outside of the U.S., have lemon laws.

Though they can vary wildly, most state lemon laws have a clause that requires a company to replace a computer completely after the third repair.

Meet Deirdre O’Brien, The Apple Executive Bringing A Human Touch To The Tech Giant, by Shalayne Pulia, InStyle

For 30-plus years, Deirdre O'Brien has been giving Apple Inc. a human touch. She started working at the original Apple factory scheduling the production lines for early Mac products like Macintosh SE and the Macintosh plus. She then helped build out the company’s very first retail and ecommerce sites, and then was instrumental in the company’s expansion across the globe. Now, as Senior Vice President of Retail + People reporting directly to Apple CEO Tim Cook, O’Brien is one of the highest-ranking executives at the company. “I just felt like the constant growth of the Apple culture is something that I tried to weave through everything that we did,” she tells InStyle. “So now, every day, I get to wake up and really think through how we make sure that we help support Apple employees to do the best work of their lives.”

O’Brien cites lessons she learned from Steve Jobs in those early days as the backbone of her people-focused philosophy. “Something that I think Steve really instilled in all of us is that technology is here solely to connect people,” she says. “Steve talked about Apple being at the intersection of technology and liberal arts, and that is how we all feel, that it's so much bigger than the technology itself.”

Crank Up the Volume

AirPods Pro: Easy To Love, Hard To Explain Why, byDavid Johnson, Apple News Net

There is also the benefit to one's long-term hearing health. When you are trying to listen to something through headphones in a noisy environment, you have no choice but to crank up the volume to what in most circumstances would be an uncomfortably loud and unsafe level. The problem is that you can hear how loud it really is because there is so much noise competing with your signal. Noise cancelation allows you to use the same signal level in a loud environment that you would normally use in a quiet one. That is music, and long-term health to your ears.


Some people cannot bring themselves to spend a lot of money on a product unless they can fully justify the purchase with spreadsheet-like precision. You might find this a bit of a challenge with AirPods Pro. Nevertheless, you shouldn't let that stop you from going out and buying a pair. The benefits are not always easy to describe. Much of it is intangible. You might not be able to describe what makes a product great. But you know a great product when you see it. AirPods Pro are like that.

AirPods Pro Review: Hearing Is Still Believing, by Jason Snell, Six Colors

What I said in my original AirPods review goes for the AirPods Pro, too: “They sound good.” The world is full of people who will tell you all sorts of things about audio quality of headphones and speakers, some of which is legitimate and some of which is complete snake oil. All I can say is that I can listen to favorite songs on AirPods Pro and they sound good. Do they sound as good as my expensive custom in-ear monitors? No… but they’re way more convenient. And the active noise cancellation basically equals the additional sound dampening of the custom inserts.

AirPods Pro And The Sound Of Silence, by M.G. Siegler, 500ish Words

To reiterate, the key here is how portable these things are. If you buy them, you’re going to have them with you at all times. And so you’re going to wear them at all times. That’s what matters. It’s noise-cancellation at scale.

AirPods Pro Review: Apple At Its Best, by Jason Cross, Macworld

AirPods Pro are a perfect example of what Apple does best. They take cutting-edge technology and make something that may not quite outperform its rivals, but still performs quite well, while being much easier and more delightful to use.

What The AirPods Pro Hint About Apple’s Wearable AR Philosophy, by Dan Moren, Macworld

In looking at the AirPods Pro as a product, I think there are important things to be gleaned from the choices Apple made in their design—the kind of design choices that may lend insight into the way Apple is thinking about the wearables market.

Wearables, of course, was the market that was sharply up in the company's most recent quarterly results, and thus is clearly a place that Apple is likely to be focusing some attention in the future. And with rumors of Apple's AR goggles/glasses starting to coalesce around next year, the AirPods Pro might key us into how Apple is thinking about entering the still nascent (or perhaps non-existent) market for augmented reality headsets.

Coming Soon

Adobe Is Building Live-streaming Into Creative Cloud Apps, by Dami Lee, The Verge

Adobe is developing live-streaming features that are built directly into its Creative Cloud apps, the company announced at its annual Adobe Max creativity conference. A beta version of the feature is currently available to a whitelisted group of users on Adobe Fresco. The feature gives users the option to go live and share a link for anyone online to watch and comment on their streams.

Chief product officer Scott Belsky compared the experience to Twitch but with an educational component that could filter videos for users who want to learn how to use specific tools.


'The A-List: Country' Is The Next Apple Music Playlist To Receive A Name Change, Now 'Today's Country', by Mitchel Broussard, MacRumors

This playlist will essentially be the same, keeping track of all of the latest songs coming out of the country music genre, updated every day, while simply ditching "The A-List" moniker that has been around essentially since ‌Apple Music‌ launched in 2015.

Forget Screen Time! Track Your App Usage In macOS Catalina With These Alternatives, by Tim Brookes, How-To Geek

At its most basic settings, Timing automatically tracks how long you spend in each app and includes information like window title and pathname.

All the data is collected and displayed on the Review screen. This is where you can see which apps you’ve used. You can also organize usage by project or task. You’ll see the websites you’ve visited, relevant keywords (like a project’s title), and the folders you frequented the most.

This App Has Made Budgeting For The Holidays So Much Easier For Me — Here's How It Works, by Danielle Jackson, Popsugar

Dollarbird helps me look at the bigger picture of my spending habits, and it gives me a chance to see how one purchase today can affect me a few weeks down the line. This is extremely helpful when I'm planning for abnormal expenses that don't occur as often, and it's even more helpful when I'm trying to keep a close eye on what I'm spending around the holidays. The bottom line here is that this is one of the simplest money management apps I've ever used, and I'm sure my bank account will be thanking me for putting it to use later.

How I Keep Track Of New Music Releases, by Federico Viticci, MacStories

Following an initial setup process that lets you import artists from your music library (the app can also import artists from an iCloud backup, but it does not support Spotify), MusicHarbor lets you see a reverse-chronological feed of new music releases in the main ‘Releases’ tab. This single screen is what sets MusicHarbor apart from anything else I’ve tried to date thanks to its combination of system integrations, iOS 13 features, and power-user options.

New Dictation App Brings Advanced Offline Transcription Capabilities To iPhone And iPad, by Guilherme Rambo, 9to5Mac

With the introduction of iOS 13.2, Apple added new features to its speech recognition APIs that allow third-party developers to perform on-device speech recognition, even when the device is offline. Today, Blueshift is releasing its brand new Dictation app that takes advantage of this new functionality.

Sesame Street Launches 50th Anniversary AR App, by Jesse Damiani, Forbes

Alongside its 50th Anniversary, beloved children’s franchise Sesame Street has launched an AR application on iOS that allows users to play with characters such as Elmo, Cookie Monster, Ernie, and more—and even become one themselves.

Jean-Michel Jarre Launches EōN, by Stuart Dredge, Muscially

Musician Jean-Michel Jarre is launching an “infinite music app” called EōN, which uses an algorithm to turn beats, melodies and chords he recorded into an endless stream of music.


Apple’s Gadgets Co-Star In Its New TV Drama, by Joe Flint and Tripp Mickle, Wall Street Journal

Apple products are visible in an average of 32 camera shots per episode, and an Apple logo is visible in roughly one-third of those shots, according to a Wall Street Journal tally from viewing all 10 episodes of the first season. Rival brands are scarce.


“In a changing world where people watch less traditional television, especially younger audiences, how do you reach them?” said Patrick Quinn, president of PQ Media. “One way to do that is to launch your own streaming service and show off your product. Not everyone can do that, but Apple can.”

Where Do Niche Streamers Fit In A Sea Of Services?, by Alex Weprin, Hollywood Reporter

To help spur early growth, niche services are using the targeting capabilities of tech giants like Amazon, Roku and Apple to drive new subscriptions (in exchange for a cut of revenue). AMC Networks is among the companies that make their services available through these intermediaries.

“This scenario is exactly why we are seeing increasing interest in aggregation services like Amazon Channels, Roku Channel, even Apple channels now,” says Brett Sappington, senior research director for Parks Associates.

A Ton Of People Received Text Messages Overnight That Were Originally Sent On Valentine’s Day, by Jacob Kastrenakes, The Verge

Something strange is happening with text messages in the US right now. Overnight, a multitude of people received text messages that appear to have originally been sent on or around Valentine’s Day 2019. These people never received the text messages in the first place; the people who sent the messages had no idea that they had never been received, and they did nothing to attempt to resend them overnight.

Bottom of the Page

It's the same audiobooks and same podcasts. But now I can listen to every single words, clearly, even when there are loud motorbikes whizzing by on the road that I am walking along. Magical.


Thanks for reading.