Aussie Mac Zone ~ Episode 331

Show 331 – April 20, 2020

Run Sheet ~ Zarn & Michael



Our Aussie Apple Ramblings

Again this week a VERY BIG THANK YOU to all the people around Australia and the globe keeping us going!!!

Don’t forget to say Thank You to the cleaners and the Posties and the delivery guys just to name a few!

Story 1

Congratulations to Tidbits on their 30 Anniversary 

30 years is a long time in any business let alone the tech industry.

Tanya and Adam Engst have built a very trusted website over those years and is still going strong.

It is the second oldest Internet Only publication first published April 16, 1990.

So a heart felt congrats to you both and your contributors for a well deserved anniversary!


Story 2 ~ Pic

Today at Apple, at Home

Apple have put up some videos and will be adding more in the coming weeks.  These appear to be done at the presenters home, so a special thanks to them for allowing into their home and spending the time to help us keep ourselves and our kids entertained and learn some stuff on the way!

Currently 2 how to take better photos and 1 drawing video. All excellent!!


Good Products for when were Stuck Indoors

Apple Shares Worksheet With 30 iPad Activities for Kids

Available as a PDF that can be downloaded or printed, the suggestions include a wide range of activities that can be done using the built-in features of an iPad or iPhone.

Some of the activities include capturing a time-lapse video, going on a photo walk, recording a news interview, personalising a portrait, seeing colour in slo-mo video, and emojifying a mood. The PDF features a different activity for each number, each of which can be clicked for an activity description. For the photo walk activity, for example:

Pick a colour or letter of the day and take photos around the house and yard of things that are that colour or start with that letter. Then put them together in a collage or video. Try to make a rainbow or complete the alphabet!

Get started: Add the photos of each colour or letter to a slide in the Keynote app. Or add each photo to Clips and record your voice saying the colours or letters.

According to Apple, these activities are aimed at children from pre-kindergarten to second grade, but can be tailored to suit the whole family.

Apple has also been supporting at-home education with a series of remote learning videos that are designed to help schools and educators use the built-in features of their devices to enable remote learning.

Remote Learning Videos link 


Gaming #1 ~ Pic Secret Oops 

I found the game play a little hard on my phone using the sausages I have for finger. On saying that the multiplayer option was easy to use and if my fingers weren’t getting in the way this would’ve been an awesome game. I think with Apple TV and a controller this game would really come to life. But we will talk more about that soon I’m give this game a real chance because Kelly-Ann did like the multiplay. 



Gaming #2 ~ Pic

Cat Quest II 

This game was fun in solo mode. 

But when I went to to play multiplayer it told me I needed to use a MFI controller. Which was a little disappointing 

But I understand what apple are trying to do. Because playing with a controller on a big screen would be great or even on a iPad with one for that matter. 


Now I know I’ve talked about Apple TV a lot tonight but that’s because I think if your into gaming and Netflix then it’s a great investment. 

I know the 4K model is AU$249, $40 dollars more than the HD version BUT that also gets you a free years Apple TV+ subscription!

Review Geek tells us ~ While most people use their Apple TV strictly for movies and TV shows, it’s a perfectly capable little casual gaming console—if you pair it with a good controller.

There are some pretty lightweight games, like Crossy Road, you can play with just the Siri remote, but if you want to get the most out of gaming on the Apple TV you’ll need a proper controller. Not just any old controller will do, however, on top of selecting one that’s comfy in your hands you’ll want it to be MFi certified as well.

MFi controllers have been given the Apple seal of approval, and you know that they’ll work no matter what software update Apple puts out. That isn’t always the case with non-MFi controllers.

There’s an added bonus to picking up a controller that has been blessed by Apple as well. That is, all MFi controllers are certified to work with each of Apple’s mobile devices as well as the Apple TV. Gamers with iPhones and iPads can use their MFi controllers with ease, and that might be of more benefit than you’d think. After all, have you tried to play complex games with touch controls? With a MFi controller suddenly your iPad becomes a better gaming device too.

When shopping for an MFi game controller, there are some that immediately rise to the top of an already short list. We’ve split them into categories based on the very best available, plus two that are more suited to those with small hands or might also want to take their controller out and about with them to sneak in some gaming with a controller on their iPhone or iPad. Here are our top picks.

Best Overall: SteelSeries Nimbus ($50)



The SteelSeries Nimbus is the canonical Apple TV game controller, and it’s probably the one you’ve seen used in Apple’s advertising. It looks and feels like an Xbox One controller, which is a good thing, with all buttons just where you’d expect them to be.

Battery life is reasonable at 40 hours between charges, and when the time does come to add juice you can use the same Lightning cable that you charge everything else with.


( Mwave Australia $79 )

Most Versatile: Mad Catz Micro C.T.R.L.i ($50)


Mad Catz

Mad Catz is a name that gamers of a certain age will be very familiar with because it’s been around a long time. The company knows how to make a wireless controller, and the Micro C.T.R.L.i has some tricks up its sleeve.

Again, if you’re familiar with the popular Xbox One layout then this will feel right at home. Unlike our previous pick, however, this one features a snap-on stand to mount your iPhone on—a nice hidden value for those times you want to take a break from the big screen or game on the subway.

Unlike the Nimbus, this controller runs on AAA batteries, although they’re good for the same 40 hours or so.


( Could not find in Australia )

Best Compact Controller: SteelSeries Stratus ($24)



If you have small hands, or just want the controller with the most portability for when you use it with an iPhone or iPad, the SteelSeries Stratus is where it’s at.

This is a controller that has been around a while now, but it’s still one of the best and it’s certainly one of the smallest. Somehow, being super small doesn’t make it a dog to use, although at just 10 hours the battery life could certainly be better. You don’t need to go fumbling for AAA batteries through—the Status charges via micro USB.

As far as looks are concerned, the white version of the controller, in particular, reminds us of the classic Nintendo SNES controller, and that’s definitely a good thing!

 ( $117 )


Entertainment #1

Coronavirus robs Steve Jobs opera of its premiere on Jobs’ home turf

The San Francisco Opera company said Tuesday that it is scrapping its entire summer season — including its premiere of a critically acclaimed opera about the life of Apple co-founder Steve Jobs — as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

The classical Grammy Award-winning opera The (R)evolution of Steve Jobs had been scheduled to run June 20 through July 3. But like Apple’s canceled keynote last month, it will now no longer take place as planned.

Steve Jobs’ life in operatic form

The Steve Jobs-centric opera reenacts 19 of the most significant moments in Jobs’ life. This includes everything from his introduction to Buddhism to his role helping invent game-changers like the Macintosh and iPhone. The (R)evolution of Steve Jobs opened back in 2017.

“I was kind of hesitant at first about the subject,” Mark Campbell, who wrote the libretto featured in the opera, told Cult of Mac as the work came together. “Steve Jobs is so popular and so a part of our world, and creating an opera is full of minefields. But I saw a way into the story that could work in the operatic form. I was not interested in creating a story that made him a big hero. Nor did I want an opera that vilified him in any way. I created a libretto that paints a balanced portrait of him.”

If you’re sad about missing out on the Bay Area premiere, you can still still get your fix of Jobs-related opera. The (R)evolution of Steve Jobs is available on various music streaming platforms, including Apple Music.

For opera fans, the San Francisco Opera is also hosting a variety of videos and playlists on its website.

Entertainment #2 ~ Pic

I hope you all remembered to watch the Global Citizen stream we talked about last week!

I caught about the last hour by the time I remembered and it was great.  I’m now waiting for it to be available on demand so I can catch the earlier parts I missed.


Reminder this week we are bought to you  by



How To #1

Safari Tabs Selection

Control Tab

Shift Control Tab to go backwards


How To #2 ~ Pic

Maps Mobility Trends Reports

Go to the link in the show notes which is

select Australia from the “Search Country” box

There you will see we Aussies have stopped asking for directions by over 50% since the beginning of March.


Story 3 ~ Pic

Apple releases second-generation iPhone SE

iMore reports ~ When the iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro, and iPhone 11 Pro Max launched last year, the A13 Bionic chip that was inside of them was more powerful than the Snapdragon 865, which is the chip that Samsung’s flagship phones use. While it makes total sense for Apple’s flagship to have a processor that rivals the best around the market, putting that same processor in the $749 iPhone SE almost seems crazy.

The $749 iPhone SE has a more powerful processor than the $2000 Galaxy S20 Ultra — that’s insane. Of course, processing power isn’t everything, and obviously there’s a ton of differences between the iPhone SE and Galaxy S20 Ultra in functionality and features, but when it comes to pure processing power, the iPhone SE wins out.

Yes, there are compromises. You don’t get multiple cameras, you won’t have an OLED screen, and you won’t have the TrueDepth camera, but all of those features are add-ons and not necessary for a phone to be reliable and useful.

iPhone SE comes in three beautiful colours, black, white and (PRODUCT)RED, and is designed to withstand the elements with dust and water resistance.


Story 4

Should I Install the “COVID-19 Track Me app”

It is up to you.

I will be, my wife will be, hopefully all our family members will be.

I’m lucky enough to be still out there working. Or unlucky enough to have to go to varied places.

I don’t want to get sick, I am over 60.

More importantly I don’t want to make ANYONE sick.

I understand the concerns about what about after the pandemic, so just delete the app.  I trust Apple to not leave any tracing code behind.

This is a time we all have to work together to keep everyone safe and well.  So I am prepared to do everything I can to do my part.



Story 5 ~ Pic 

What to do, ANZAC Day 2020

1. Light Up The Dawn

Australians are being called upon at 6am on ANZAC day to stand at the end of their driveways, balconies or in their living rooms while a brief service is streamed by the RSL.

2. Community Ode

Record a video of yourself reciting The Ode, or share a message of support for veterans on your social media.

3. Tune In To Live Services

This includes the 5.30am service from the Australian War Memorial in Canberra. There will also be a 10am virtual and streamed service (closed to the public) from the Anzac Memorial in Sydney that will be broadcast live.

4. Reach Out To A Mate

There a plenty of Australians feeling very alone at the moment and Anzac Day would be the perfect day to pick up that phone and call a mate or a veteran and see how they’re doing.

5. Donate To The ANZAC Appeal

You can donate online here.

Donations support Australian veterans and their families in need.


Show Promotion

Show notes link each week on show upload, the link being

there you will see the last 6 weeks shows notes

Email us at Michael or Zarn @

Spotify – just search Aussie Mac Zone


Apple News ~ Aussie Mac Zone

(remind ~ how to Favourite)

Thanks to you our supporters you our listeners!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *