ipad

Great tech review of Apple’s iPad A12X system

Kudos to Samuel Axon of Ars Technica for writing a very good tech review of the hardware behind Apple’s new iPad Pro (2018). As I was reading it, it reminded me of the old style of solid writing that I used to get when I bought print copies of magazines.

One of the nuggets of the article is shown in the image I’ve attached here, where you can see that the 2018 iPad Pro is faster than every MacBook Pro in existence other than its 2018 model, at least in terms of the Geekbench multi-core performance tests. If you dig through the images in the article you’ll see that the story isn’t quite as powerful in the single-core benchmark, where the iPad Pro lags the 2018 MacBook Pro by up to 16%. But in those tests the iPad Pro is roughly the equivalent of a 2018 Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 model. (The older Macs use Intel Core i7 and Xeon W processors, and the Dell model uses an Intel Core i7. The 2018 MacBook Pro uses an Intel Core i9.)

These numbers — comparing a tablet to i7 and i9 processors — make one think that Apple will be using their own chips inside Mac computer systems some time soon.

Great tablet stand

If you like to watch movies and videos on your tablet, this tablet stand is very cool. The up-and-down rotation is nice and stiff, so you can set it at any angle, and it has rubber cushions in the right places to keep your tablet from sliding or getting damaged. I just bought this a few days ago, and it’s a definite “thumbs up.” It works great with my Nexus 9, and an old iPad 2 (that I only use for music these days).

(I show it next to an apple because the shiny images on Amazon may give you the impression that it’s larger.)

Apple unveils interactive HomeKit experiences in retail stores worldwide

Apple didn’t put a little home in each of its stores, but TechCrunch reports, “Apple has unveiled interactive HomeKit experiences in 46 of its retail stores worldwide ... when you go into Apple’s new retail stores you’ll be able to use the Home app from either an Apple Watch, iPhone or iPad to control devices like the Philips Hue light bulb, the Hunter ceiling fan and many others.”

Bloomberg says Apple is developing a new MacBook Pro

A Bloomberg report says that Apple is planning to release a new MacBook Pro that has a narrow OLED screen at the top of the keyboard, which may replace the function keys. In that same article they share this chart, which shows iPad sales compared to Mac sales (which presumably includes all MacBook, MacBook Pro, and Mac Pro models).

Lesson learned from Apple: Keep innovating, or die

One lesson learned from Apple recently is that if your products stagnate people will start to look around, and when they do that they may spend their money elsewhere.

As just one small example of this, iOS got boring for me, so I started looking around and bought an Android tablet instead of a new iPad. These days the Mac and macOS feel stagnant — or worse than that, moving in the wrong direction by removing features like Spaces — so I’m looking at desktop alternatives as well.

2018 Update: As a result of macOS moving in the wrong direction (IMHO), I now have have a laptop and desktop that run Linux Mint.

The trouble with the iPad

As the owner of an iPad 2, I agree with this Business Insider article that shows stats where people keep their old iPads forever. As they state, iPads are “largely consumption devices designed to stream videos and browse the web and social media, and those tasks don't need the latest and fastest specs to work well.”

In fact, because there is no “stickiness” to using an iPad, I bought a Nexus 9 in January rather than buying the latest iPad.

How to log into an iPad by throwing an Android tablet onto it

I have no idea why this works, but if I throw/slide my Google Nexus 9 tablet onto my old iPad 2, the iPad wakes up and logs in automatically. You can see it happen in this 30-second video:

I’m not touching any iPad buttons when this happens. My guess is that the iPad 2 thinks that I just removed a magnetic cover, but really, I have no idea why it does this.