The CultCast
This week: Apple’s weirdest, whackiest, and worst products!  Plus: how Michael Scott almost single-handedly destroyed Apple; the cool new features in the iOS and macOS betas; facial recognition is coming to iPhone; and a look at the beautiful prototypes that led to some of Apple’s most iconic products.’
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We also want to give Kevin MacLeod at a  thanks for the great music you hear on today's show.
On the show this week

This week’s intro
Apple hires Dropcam co-founder for special project
  • Apple has added another high-profile hire to its roster of top tech talent by bringing on the co-founder and former CEO of Dropcam, Greg Duffy.
  • Dropcam grew in popularity thanks to its cheap home cameras that connected to Wi-Fi
  • Citing “people who know Mr. Duffy,” the news site suggests he is leading a special project that’s operating like a startup within Apple.
Apple seeds first iOS 10.3 beta with Find My AirPods feature
  • Finding your tiny AirPods charging case is about to get a lot easier, thanks to a new iOS 10 beta that adds a Find My AirPods feature to iPhones and iPads.
  • Works via the find my iPhone app
  • Works with Bluetooth  so the range is limited.
  • You can make them chirp, but not while they’re in the case…
  • Map will show you where they were last located.
iOS 11 expected to bring FaceTime group calls
  • iOS 11 will finally give users the ability to hold FaceTime group calls with multiple friends, according to a new report.
  • Sources familiar with Apple’s plans claim the feature will support up to five participants, and that users will be able to initiate video calling from within iMessage group chats.
  • It should also be noted, though, that this rumor comes from Israeli site The Verifierwhich has no track record when it comes to Apple rumors. It claims to have garnered this information from “several people familiar with iOS development.”
Hartmut Esslinger
In the mid 1970s, he first worked with Sony on its trinitron and Wega ranges. In the early 1980s, he began working with Apple.
Direct download: CultCast_268_-_The_Apple_products_time_forgot.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am PDT

This week: 2017 brings the super-charged MacBook Pro you’ve been waiting for—yes, another update!  Then, a former employee says Tim Cook's making Apple boring...  Is it true?  Plus: we get more evidence Apple will be making TV shows and movies; and iPhone 8 may be packing friggin’ lasers and facial recognition.

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We also want to give Kevin MacLeod at a  thanks for the great music you hear on today's show.
On the show this week

@erfon / @bst3r / @lkahney



  • Apple will launch a new 15-inch MacBook Pro later this year powered by Intel’s next-generation Kaby Lake processors and 32GB of desktop-class RAM, according to a reliable analyst.
  • According to reliable KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, Apple has a MacBook Pro refresh planned for later this year that will bring new Kaby Lake CPUs and up to 32GB of desktop-class RAM. It will be “the most significantly redesigned product this year,” Kuo says.
  • Kuo doesn’t mention specific release dates for any of these machines, but he expects the MacBook with 32GB of RAM to arrive sometime during the second half of 2017 — at which point Apple could reduce the price of the entry-level 13-inch MacBook Pro without Touch Bar.
  • Kaby Lake will also grace the rest of the MacBook Pro lineup — and the 12-inch MacBook, too, Kuo claims
Former employee explains how Tim Cook made Apple boring
  • Tim Cook’s kinder, gentler management style is the biggest reason why 2016 was one of the most boring years for Apple in recent memory, according to a former employee of the company.
  • Steve Jobs was notorious for inciting conflict and competition between top employees
  • After Cook took over, he worked to eliminate conflict within Cupertino’s walls and made employees less passionate, claims ex-Apple employee Bob Burrough.
  • "Tim Cook fired Scott Forstall and aligned the executive staff so as to have peace. ...which is to say there is no conflict”
Apple Plans to Launch Original TV Shows Comparable to 'Westworld' and 'Stranger Things' By End of 2017
  • According to a new report from The Wall Street Journal, Apple is building a "significant" business centered around creating original, including scripted television shows and possibly even movies.
  • The content would reportedly be made available on Apple Music, like the already-announced projects Carpool Karaoke and Vital Signs.
  • Apple executives have told Hollywood that the new original content will launch by the end of 2017, according to the new report.
  • The move is looked at as a way for Apple to gain an edge against Spotify, and not a move to compete with Netflix and Amazon Prime Video.
iPhone 8 may pack frickin’ lasers for facial recognition
  • Apple’s next iPhone may come with new facial recognition technology and actual friggin’ laser beams, according to an analyst.
  • By adding lasers near the front-facing camera, Apple will be able to depth-map objects, according to analysts at Cowen and Company. The camera could also be used for image recognition, enhancing security and fueling augmented reality.
iPhone 8 may have even higher waterproof rating
  • Apple may be planning to make its next iPhone even more waterproof, according to the newest rumor
  • “Apple’s iPhone 8 will feature the IP68 rating protection as part of drastic upgrades marking the 10th anniversary of the iPhone this year,” reports South Korean news site, The Investor, citing an industry source.
Mavic Pro: The coolest gadget since the original iPhone [Reviews]
Direct download: CultCast_267_-_Super-charged_Macbook_Pro_coming_your_way.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:41pm PDT

This week: we reveal our current favorite gadgets!  Plus: is MacBook Pro’s Touch Bar a gimmick?  Then: Apple set to unveil three new iPads; rumors point to an Apple augmented reality headset later this year; and don’t miss our exhaustive AirPods review—we tell you what we love and we what we don’t!
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We also want to give Kevin MacLeod at a  thanks for the great music you hear on today's show.
On the show this week
This week’s intro
Apple to deliver 3 new iPads this spring, but no new mini
  • iPads are getting stale… The only model introduced in 2016 was the 9.7-inch iPad Pro, while the 12.9-inch iPad Pro and the iPad mini haven’t seen a refresh since 2015. The iPad Air 2 has been the same since October 2014.
  • According to one Ming Chi Quo, Apple is focusing its efforts on updating the 9.7-inch iPad and 12.9-inch iPad Pro, and on introducing a new model with a 10- to 10.5-inch display.
  • It’s unclear whether the cheaper device will support Apple Pencil or the Smart Connector, but Kuo says it won’t have the new A10X chip, which will be exclusive to the larger models. Instead, it will be powered by the same A9 chip found in the iPhone 6s series
  • Ming-Chi Kuo, widely regarded as one of the world’s best Apple analysts, doesn’t expect Cupertino to launch an AR product until at least 2018
Why the rumor that Apple will launch AR glasses in 2017 is ridiculous
  • Apple is teaming up with Zeiss to create augmented-reality glasses that will be unveiled later this year, according to long-time tech blogger Robert Scoble.
  • “A Zeiss employee confirmed the rumors that Apple and Carl Zeiss AG are working on a light pair of augmented reality/mixed reality glasses that may be announced this year,” Scoble wrote in a Facebook post. “I thought it was next year but now that I saw this I believe it will happe this year.”
Direct download: CultCast_266_-_Apple_s_augmented_reality_glasses.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:35am PDT

This week: the worst gadgets of CES 2017!  Yup, we run through the gizmos no one on the earth actually needs.  Then we spice things up with our most hotly anticipated tech of 2017.  And finally, we’re gonna be real with you guys… Apple had a rough 2016.  But that’s all behind us now.  It’s a new year. It’s a fresh start.  We discuss what Apple needs to get right in 2017.

On the show this week

@erfon / @bst3r 

This episode supported by

Build a beautiful, responsive website quick at  Enter offer code CultCast at checkout to get 10% off. Squarespace—Build it Beautiful.

BlueApron - a better way to cook! Get your first 3 meals free with free shipping at
We also want to give Kevin MacLeod at a  thanks for the great music you hear on today's show.
This week’s intro
Flow is a wearable that helps you avoid nasty air pollution
  • It can measure dust, exhaust fumes and other harmful gases, as well as the household chemicals you might encounter indoors.
Smart hairbrush tells your iPhone if you’re not brushing properly
  • Every year at CES, there’s one gadget that epitomizes the crazier side of Silicon Valley’s “connected tech” smart devices mania.
  • To do this, the smart hairbrush relies on motion sensors for monitoring your brushing patterns, conductivity sensors for spotting whether your hair is wet or dry, and a microphone for identifying “manageability, frizziness, dryness, split ends and breakage.” The brush also vibrates if you use it too vigorously.
  • All this data gets sent to your iPhone, where an app gives you a hair quality score, tells you which parts of your brushing need work, and offers hairstyling products to buy.
OWC’s gigantic dock adds more ports to the new MacBook Pro
  • OWC teased a new accessory called the DEC dock for MacBook Pro at CES
  • it's a slab that sticks to the bottom of the laptop to add up to 4TB of additional flash or SSD storage, an SD card slot, full-sized USB 3.0 ports and an Ethernet jack for wired internet.
  • The downside is that it makes your new laptop as chunky as the 2012 model. From a depth of around 0.6 inches, you'll now have a machine that's almost an inch thick. OWC chief Larry O'Connor said they've been developing the concept for over three years and feel like the time is right to release it.
  • The company doesn't have a release date and pricing info for the DEC yet
Griffin connects your toast to your phone
Direct download: CultCast_265_-_Worst_gadgets_of_CES_2017.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:24pm PDT