Aussie Mac Zone ~ Episode 246

Show 246 – July 16, 2018

Run Sheet ~ Zarn & Michael

This week sponsors


Our Aussie Apple Ramblings

Story 1

Apple sold fewer than 1 million iPhones in India in the first half of 2018 

The Verge reports ~ Apple has traditionally had trouble with sales in India. While the company started manufacturing iPhones in the country to lower the price locally, it seems that it has a long road ahead of it, according to a report from Bloomberg: it’s sold fewer than a million devices in the first half of 2018.

Bloomberg reports that three Apple sales executives left the company as it restructures its operations there. It only has a 2 percent marketshare in India, and in 2017, it sold 3.2 million iPhones, according to a report by Counterpoint Research. But those sales appear to have slowed: the same report estimates that Apple has moved “fewer than a million devices,” and even with strong sales, it’ll have trouble catching up to last year’s numbers.

India is the world’s third largest market for smartphones, but its high tariffs — adding between 15 to 20 percent to the price — has pushed consumers towards cheaper alternatives, like Samsung. Earlier this summer, Apple began to build the iPhone 6S and the iPhone SE in the country — a tactic that the company hopes will help reduce the price of its phones. But it’ll take a while before Apple’s operations there get up and running at full capacity, and in the meantime, Apple is lagging further behind its competitors.

India could be a huge opportunity for Apple, and CEO Tim Cook has indicated that it’s going to move aggressively into the country. The country has expanded its 4G network and has a growing middle class, which could mean that more people will be willing adopt Apple’s products. Despite those low sales numbers, however, Cook said in May that the company’s revenue from India has grown, setting a record for the first half of 2018.


Story 2

Apple Sneak In Some Upgrades

Apple, last Thursday, our time released some upgraded MacBook Pros, MacBook Pro (2018).

These were shown to press by the Pro’s that have been using them during development – see the iMore Story Below

Yes, new keyboards! Yes, new processors! Yes, more RAM! Yes, more SSD!

Yes, better displays! 


Third generation Butterfly & Dome switches, re-engineered with the major focus being on loudness and tone, with Apple saying it has had intense feedback about the loudness of the previous keyboard. 

Rene Richie from iMore “I’ve only had a few minutes typing time on it, but it is significantly less loud. It also feels punchier, like it’s got more attitude when you’re hitting it and wants to hit you back harder. I’ll be curious to see how it ages.”


Coffee Lake is here

The 13″ get Quad Core i5 or i7 up to 2.7 GHz

The 15″ get Hex Core i7 or i9 up to 2.9 GHz


The 13″ still at 16GB

The 15″ now up to 32GB

Drive Capacity

The 13″ up to 2TB

The 15″ up to 4TB


Both sizes get True Tone Displays

The 15″ gets Radeon Pro discreet graphics with 4GB of video memory

Apple T2 Chip

Replaces the T1 giving secure boot, realtime encryption as well as the Touch ID, Apple Pay & Secure Enclave.

They will also have “Hey Siri” for the first time on a Mac, when we get Mojave.

Link to the new MacBook Pros

Link to the iMore Story


We are approaching show 250!

ithelp2u will be providing some 

iTunes / Apple Gift Cards as prizes for listener stories, thoughts & questions about the past, present & future??

Story 3

Further to the previous story

Apple hasn’t directly acknowledged whether the quieter, third-generation keyboards dually address the keyboard issues, but iFixit discovered the 2018 MacBook Pro has a thin, silicone barrier underneath each key, which they believe are intended to prevent the dust and crumbs from getting stuck. 

For this reason, some customers have been hoping that Apple will start swapping out second-generation keyboards with third-generation keyboards, as part of its service program, but MacRumors has learned that isn’t the plan. 

When asked if Apple Stores and Apple Authorised Service Providers will be permitted to replace second-generation keyboards on 2016 and 2017 MacBook Pro models with the new third-generation keyboards, if necessary, Apple said, no, the third-generation keyboards are exclusive to the 2018 MacBook Pro.


Story 4

Former Apple employee faces up to 10 years in prison, $250K fine for stealing Project Titan trade secrets

9to5Mac reports ~ The United States Federal Bureau of Investigation charged former Apple employee Xiaolang Zhang with stealing trade secrets. Zhang was hired back in December of 2015 by Apple to work on Project Titan, focusing mainly on software and hardware for autonomous vehicles.

As reported by Bloomberg, the charge was found in documents filed with the Northern District Court of California. Zhang’s duties were to design and test circuit boards that were capable of analysing sensor data.

A hardware engineer for Apple’s autonomous vehicle development team, Zhang was granted access to confidential company databases, according to the complaint. After he took paternity leave he told Apple in April he was moving back to China to work at Xmotors. Apple grew more suspicious after seeing his increased network activity and visits to the office before he resigned, according to the complaint.

Fast forward a couple of years and in April of 2018, Zhang took family leave after the birth of his child, and visited China during this time. Shortly after, he told his supervisor at Apple that he was leaving the company and moved to China to work for XMotors, a Chinese-based startup that is also focusing on autonomous tech for cars.

Following that, his supervisor at Apple felt like he had been evasive during his final meeting. This lead Apple’s New Product Security Team to begin an investigation into his network activity and Apple devices, which were surrendered when he left the company.

Apple began to grow increasingly suspicious of his network activity. He had accessed data regarding things like prototypes.

Security footage at Apple indicated that Zhang had visited the campus on Saturday, April 28, and entered Apple’s autonomous vehicle software and hardware labs. Upon looking at time stamps, this visit coincided with data download times, and Zhang left with a box of hardware.

Zhang admitted to the Federal Bureau of Investigation that he downloaded Apple driverless technology files to his wife’s laptop to have continued access to them, according to the complaint. He was arrested July 7.

All evidence was forwarded to the FBI after Apple’s Digital Forensic Investigations team discovered that at least 60% of the downloaded data that was transferred over to his wife’s computer was problematic.


Story 5

Apple’s iPhone 6 has the highest failure rate among iPhones — but Samsung is worse

the next web reports ~ A recent study of the past five years’ worth of iPhone releases saw that the iPhone 6 was, hands down, the worst Apple handset release in recent memory. Both the iPhone 6 and 6s models (regular and Plus) topped the chart of least reliable Apple handsets, according to the “State of Mobile Device Repair & Security“ report issues by Blancco, a data erasure and security firm.

The 6 was notoriously bad, with a staggering 22 percent failure rate. For those keeping score at home, that means more than one in five of the handsets required repair or replacement at some point. Even the 5s was deemed more reliable, with a mere 5 percent failure rate.

The most common issues plaguing iPhones, according to the report, were Bluetooth issues, Wi-Fi, headset and mobile data.

For Apple, things have improved dramatically following its issues with the iPhone 6. The 6s, for example, failed at a 16 percent rate, while the 7 dropped to just 8 percent. Both current models, the iPhone 8, and the iPhone X, have narrowed the failure rate to just three percent, which seems pretty respectable.

For Android users, the tests showed Samsung handsets failed at a higher rate than any other Android phone. Overall, Blancco found that Samsung devices had a failure rate of 27.4 percent — a rate higher than even the worst iPhone, which was released four years ago.

Android phones were most commonly plagued by general performance issues, followed by failures with the camera, microphone, and battery.


Reminder this week we are bought to you  by Aussie Tech Radio @

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Story 6

iPhone survives 1,000-foot plummet out of a plane, located by owner with ‘Find my iPhone’

appleinsider reports ~ A pair of friends in Iowa took a ride in a vintage biplane in Ames, Iowa, July 3. when one of them took out her iPhone to take pictures, the phone fell out of the plane, dropping about 1,000 feet to the ground below.

According to WHO TV in Iowa the woman, Sarvinder Naberhaus, assumed the phone was gone, but upon landing she tried the Find My iPhone feature in an attempt to locate it. It didn’t work the first time, but before going to buy a new phone, she tried once more. 

That second try, it turned out, was successful. After following the trail for a while, Naberhaus spotted the phone in tall grass in a residential neighbourhood, without a scratch, while displaying a notification about an upcoming meeting. 

“I literally went into shock,” said the second passenger Donna Johnson. “‘I asked this is this for real? Is that the same phone?'” and I said ‘this is a miracle phone, you can’t drop a phone 1000 feet and have it still work!'”

Naberhouse, the author of multiple books, told the TV station that incident is proof that “God has a sense of humour.” 

In 2015, a Texas man claimed that he has dropped his iPhone more than 9,000 feet from a plane and he found it on the ground, still working. More recently, an iPhone 7 was found underwater, still working after a two-day, 30-foot submersion, off the coast of England.


Story 7

As time goes on more reports about the 2018 MacBook Pro’s 

The site’s tests were performed on the 13-inch MacBook Pro with Touch Bar equipped with a 2.7GHz quad-core 8th-generation Core i7 processor, 16GB RAM, Intel Iris Plus 655, and a 512GB SSD. 

A file copy test of the SSD in the new MacBook Pro, which Apple says supports sequential read speeds of up to 3.2GB/s and sequential write speeds up to 2.2GB/s, led Laptop Mag to declare the SSD in the MacBook Pro “the fastest ever” in a laptop. Higher capacity SSDs may see even faster speeds on disk speeds tests. A BlackMagic Disk Speed test was also conducted, resulting in an average write speed of 2,682 MB/s.  

We had to do a double take when we saw how quickly the new 13-inch MacBook Pro duplicated 4.9GB worth of data. It took 2 seconds, which comes out to a rate of 2,519 megabytes per second. That’s insane.

To be fair, Apple’s relatively new APFS file system is designed to speed up file copies using a technology Apple calls Instant Cloning. But a win is a win.


How to 1


Make an Apple Note secure and list all your Auto Top Up accounts and what Credit Card or Bank Account they are paired with.

I have just changed Banks fully and this is takes forever and I still missed 2.

Examples are

travel card, Opal in NSW

motorway card, Linkt in NSW

Internet Service Provider

the list goes on


How To 2 

How to add secondary destinations in Apple Maps while navigating

While already in navigation mode on iPhone, swipe up from anywhere on the bottom portion of the screen.

Tap on either Gas Stations, Breakfast, or Coffee.

A list will appear with options near your area. Simply tap on them and add it to navigation. Give it a few seconds and Apple Maps will begin routing you in that direction.


A couple of others stories – briefly

Andy Hertzfeld interview on 

Called Tools and Craft on YouTube notion.os

Sonos update adds AirPlay 2 support

On Wednesday, Sonos released support for Apple’s AirPlay 2, giving a dramatic boost in functionality to certain Sonos smart speakers via a software update. If you’ve got a Sonos One, Beam, Playbase, or second-generation Play:5, you’ll need to update your Sonos iOS app and then use the new app to install the software update.

This is a big step forward in flexibility for Sonos products—keep in mind that Sonos speakers don’t do Bluetooth or AirPlay 1, so they’ve been pretty firmly locked in their own universe unless you added a dongle or ran a software bridge. But once a Sonos speaker gets AirPlay 2, you can do a lot more than just play audio directly to that speaker from a Mac or iOS device.

Perhaps most impressively, all AirPlay 2 speakers can play music in perfect synchronisation. If you’ve got a HomePod or two and a compatible Sonos device, you can now select all those devices and play music through them, entirely in sync. Even better, if you’ve got incompatible Sonos devices and place them in the same group as an AirPlay 2-compatible Sonos device via the Sonos app, those speakers will also play synchronously. Jason was able to get music to play in sync throughout his house, via a paired set of HomePods, a Play:5, and the (incompatible) Play:1 in my bathroom.

Please read the story at Macworld for the added steps

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