This Week in Tech News

Apple Event In New York, Oct. 30th

Episode 1535

Apple will be having an event this Tuesday, October 30th in New York and Leo expects we'll see new MacBooks, and definitely a new iPad that will basically be a large iPhone XS. Tune in at live.twit.tv for our exclusive coverage!

Leo Tries Out the iPhone XR

Episode 1535

Leo got the iPhone XR and he says it could be Apple's most popular iPhone, in spite of the LCD screen, rather than the OLED screen. For $750 for the 64GB, which Leo says is plenty for anyone, you get all the functionality of the iPhone Xs, but with a choice of colors. What are you giving up? The OLED LED screen, and the dual camera on the back. But even that isn't bad because Apple has managed to create a version of Portrait mode that isn't that bad. Leo says that anyone coming from an older iPhone should be very happy with it.

Hands-on with the Pixel 3 XL

Google Pixel 3 XL

Episode 1533

Leo got the Google Pixel 3 XL smartphone this week and spent the day in San Francisco trying out the camera. Leo says he's impressed with the Pixel 3 camera and its photo features, including an impressive zoom. Google is using computational photography to do a lot of the things that a telephoto lens would do, and the results are remarkable. Users, though, are complaining about the deep "notch" on the top and the 'chin' at the bottom.

Apple Event October 30th

Apple Invite

Episode 1533

Apple is going to have another event on October 30th, and Leo expects a new iPad Pro minus the bezel and hopefully new Macs. There were dozens of different invitations with various Apple logo designs that all said "There's More in the Making." The event will be held in New York City at 10AM Eastern time, 7AM Pacific.

Leo Tries the Magic Leap VR Headset

Episode 1532

Leo had a chance to try out the "Creator's edition" of the new Magic Leap Virtual Reality Headset. Magic Leap has raised $1.4 Billion to create this VR headset. Leo says that selling a developer's edition is the new Beta. People buy them, and then shake out the bugs. Leo says that while VR is initially a wow experience, over time, you start to get sick to your stomach. And while Magic Leap was interesting, Leo says we are still in the infant days of virtual and augmented reality.

Google announces Pixel 3 XL, Slate and other products

Episode 1531

Google announced the Google Pixel 3 XL this week, and Leo says it feels great in the hand. It has also added wireless charging, which Leo says is the holy grail of mobile phones, and the three major manufactures now support it. Google also announced the Pixel Slate, a new tablet with Chrome OS. It can also run Android and Linux apps. There was also the Google Home Hub tablet. Surprisingly tiny, it has a screen and is designed to be your home's hub.

Bloomberg: China Hacks SuperMicro Motherboards

Motherboard

Episode 1530

Bloomberg published a story that China's PRC had installed a tiny chip the size of a grain of rice on all Elemental SuperMicro Motherboard, giving them access to a treasure trove of corporation and national security secrets. These boards are used widely in corporations and even the Department of Defense. Leo says the article was well researched, well sourced, but the day after it was published, everyone, including corporations where 17 unidentified sources worked, have denied it. Even the US Department of Homeland security and the UK CyberSecurity Ministry.

Apple could make your Macs inoperative, sparking right to repair debate

Episode 1529

According to a story that broke this week, software in the new macOS will render your Macs inoperative if you have your computer repaired by a third party. Leo says that iFixit says that it's premature statement. Apple claims it's a security procedure to protect the secure enclave and other proprietary hardware. While the software does exist, Apple hasn't deployed it just yet. But Leo says that it's still problematic, as it goes to whether or not you have the right to repair your computers, or if you even own it.

Has China Hacked All Our Corporations?

Episode 1529

According to Bloomberg, China added a tiny chip, about the size of a grain of rice, to network motherboards that would allow China to Spy on corporations. The chip was discovered by Amazon Security, which notified federal authorities. The servers were created by Chinese company Elemental, and are on everything from network business servers to NAVY WARSHIPS. Investigators have discovered that the chips were installed by the PRC at the manufacturing plant. But here's the twist ... everyone is now denying it.