The iPad Pro (2021) Needs to be More Pro

Apple’s iPad Pro is good, really good, I love it, but it could be better. It could have closer to an HDR — high dynamic range — display, a way to attach teh Apple Pencil where it doesn't get knocked off so always, a FaceTime camera that's not giving us perpetually wicked side-eye, functional LIDAR portrait mode on the back, and Thunderbolt — maybe even dual Thunderbolt on both sides.

But can the next-generation iPad Pro (2021) really help fix all this...?


Big, good win on ATT not just for Apple but for user consent, choice, and privacy

Here's Apple's statement:

We’re grateful to the French Competition Authority for recognizing that App Tracking Transparency in iOS 14 is in the best interest of French iOS users. ATT will provide a powerful user privacy benefit by requiring developers to ask users' permission before sharing their data with other companies for the purposes of advertising, or with data brokers. We firmly believe that users’ data belongs to them, and that they should control when that data is shared, and with whom. We look forward to further engagement with the FCA on this critical matter of user privacy and competition.

And the news:

The Autorité de la concurrence examined whether the measures implemented by Apple to offer users a reinforced framework of consent for the use of their personal data could be regarded as necessary and proportionate to the objective pursued. It also received an opinion from the CNIL (National Commission on Informatics and Liberty) on the issues raised. In the state of the investigation, the Autorité considered that the decision of Apple to set up a feature for collecting complementary consent to that implemented by other players in online advertising, did not appear as an abusive practice, when

(1) a company, even if it is in a dominant position or can be considered as a structuring platform, has the freedom in principle to set rules to access its services, subject to not disregarding the laws and applicable regulations and that these rules are not anti-competitive;

(2) the applicable regulations (GDPR and ePrivacy) do not preclude the implementation of such an obligation, while the wording adopted does not appear to induce an unfavourable bias to the monitoring procedures on third-party sites, such as imposing an unnecessary obligation or lacking proportionality, and that such a measure can facilitate, for users, the control of the use which is made of their personal data.

The Autorité therefore rejects the request for interim measures. However, it continues the investigation into the merits of the case. This should in particular make it possible to verify that the implementation by Apple of the ATT framework cannot be regarded as a form of discrimination or "self-preferencing", which could in particular be the case if Apple applied without justification, more binding rules on third-party operators than those it applies to itself for similar operations.


Why Apple is Killing the HomePod

Apple has just discontinued the HomePod. Not the new mini. The Biggie. The OG. And I’m going to tell you why they did it, and why I hope they’ll bring it back in a newer, better, more final form.

From Apple:

HomePod mini has been a hit since its debut last fall, offering customers amazing sound, an intelligent assistant, and smart home control all for just $99. We are focusing our efforts on HomePod mini. We are discontinuing the original HomePod, it will continue to be available while supplies last through the Apple Online Store, Apple Retail Stores, and Apple Authorized Resellers. Apple will provide HomePod customers with software updates and service and support through Apple Care.


How to Craft Compelling YouTube Titles

When I quit my big media job in April of 2020, I needed to build a new channel and I needed to build it as fast as possible. I\'d built my previous, company-owned channel to 170K subscribers in 2 years. I ended up building the new indie one to over 200K in 9 months. Here\'s what I learned about titles — most recently from Clubhouse.

  • Like YouTube videos, YouTube titles should be as short as they can possibly be but no shorter. Try to keep them from truncating if you can.
  • Keep titles glanceable and incredibly easy to ‘read’ even if someone is scrolling or just glancing across the page.
  • Test your titles with
  • Look away, look back, see how long it takes you parse your title.
  • Make titles share-able. Think how someone would tell a friend about your video. That phrasing could be the best title. “Did you see MrBeast gave away 100 Elon Musk posters?” -> “I gave away 100 Elon Musk Posters”
  • Go into YouTube search, type in the topic of your video. Go into Google search, type in the topic of your video. See what’s ranking. Use that to make your title better.
  • Front-load the keywords if possible (put them first/early) not for SEO (YouTube SEO isn\'t really a thing...) but so that people’s eyes latch on to them. It’s like having a crisp, distinct images in a thumbnail. “Minecraft, but with only one heart.”
  • If the keywords themselves aren’t attention-getting, you can preface them with an exclamation. “Gross! Don’t make this pie!”
  • Titles need to help the thumbnail generate curiosity if they’re going to get the click.
  • Questions work if the answer isn’t simple, obvious, or conventional. “Are you getting too much sleep?”
  • So does hinting at information most people might not know. “Why everyone is wrong about donuts”, “The truth about economy class tickets”
  • You can also introduce doubt, but it can stress people so be careful. “Ford vs. Toyota — Don’t make a mistake!”
  • Plus out your title to stand out. “Canon C70 review” -> “Canon C70 review — 3 weeks on-location!”
  • “— Real XYZ reacts” or just “— XYZ reacts” can entice people to see how someone with presumed expertise views something they care about. “My Cousin Vinny — Real lawyer reacts!”
  • Classics are classics for a reason, especially if you’re targeting YouTube and Google search, and you niche down and over-deliver: “Best iPhone accessories for photographers” “Top 5 Mac accessories for podcasters”
  • If a title isn’t working (you can see real time CTR or lower than average views in real-time, or notice views tanking after bell-notifications wear off) don’t be afraid to change it. You can come up with 3-5 solid variants before you post the video and have them ready to test after the first hour, first 3-6 hours, 6-12 hours. (In combination with cycling thumbnails as well.) Even if it’s just to tweak from initial core audience service to more broad browse/suggested appeal.
  • Like with everything -> Test, iterate, learn, improve, repeat.

Apple DESTROYS Leaker — Dramatic Abridged Annotation!

A dramatic, abridged, annotated reading of Apple's lawsuit against former employee and alleged leaker Simon Lancaster:

Plaintiff Apple Inc. (“Apple”) brings this action to stop the misappropriation of Apple’s trade secrets by its former employee Simon Lancaster.

Despite over a decade of employment at Apple, Lancaster abused his position and trust within the company to systematically disseminate Apple’s sensitive trade secret information in an effort to obtain personal benefits. He used his seniority to gain access to internal meetings and documents outside the scope of his job’s responsibilities containing Apple’s trade secrets, and he provided these trade secrets to his outside media correspondent (“Correspondent”). The Correspondent then published the stolen trade secrets in articles, citing a “source” at Apple. On multiple occasions, Lancaster proposed that the Correspondent give benefits to Lancaster in exchange for Apple’s trade secrets. For example, Lancaster proposed that the Correspondent provide favorable coverage of a startup company in which Lancaster was an investor as a quid pro quo. Lancaster even recruited the Correspondent to serve as his personal investigator. In one instance, Lancaster requested that the Correspondent explore a rumor that could prove harmful to a company in which Lancaster had invested.


AirPods 3 & AirPods Pro 2 — Reacting to Next-Gen Leak Bombs!

Analysis of AirPods 3 and AirPods Pro 2 rumors in reverse order, Momento-style!


Adobe Photoshop for M1 Macs, Photoshop for iPad Update, Super Resolution for Camera RAW

Adobe: Photoshop ships on Macs with Apple Silicon: Gains speedier selections, filters and performance boosts

I am thrilled to announce that today we are releasing the first version of Photoshop to run natively on Macs with the new M1 chip. Our internal tests show that Photoshop delivers significant performance gains across the application for customers using these latest Macs.


☁️ Two big features for Photoshop on the iPad: Cloud Documents Version History

📷 Super Resolution in Adobe Camera Raw Plugin


Apple Destroying Google — The Truth

Google, Sundar Pachai, says they’re going to stop tracking our activity across the web just to target us with personal ads. Some think this has to do with Apple, with Tim Cook’s new App Tracking Transparency in iOS 14.5, which tries to compel companies like Google and Facebook to ask our permission, to get our consent before following us across apps and the web. That this is Google finally coming to terms with our right to privacy and to choose for ourselves. But it is absolutely none of those things…


How to Get Subscribers on YouTube (Even Though Subscribers Don’t Matter)

When I quit my big media job in April of 2020, I needed to build a new channel and I needed to build it as fast as possible. I'd built my previous, company-owned channel to 170K subscribers in 2 years. I ended up building the new indie one to over 200K in 9 months. Here's what I learned (most recently on Clubhouse):

  • Best way to get subscribers is to ask for them.
  • Never be ashamed to ask and never let anyone shame you for asking.
  • Ask for subscribers near the beginning of the video, right after you’ve delivered value. ~20 seconds in, right after the hook.
  • Asking for subscribers is not about converting first-time viewers, it’s about reminding viewers who have watched and enjoyed several of your videos to subscribe.
  • People who enjoy your videos can often be so engrossed in watching they don’t even think about subscribing, so it really is a helpful reminder.
  • One of the best converting CTA for subscribers is Dream’s: “YouTube shows me X% of you watching haven’t subscribed yet. Please hit that button and bell so we can build the biggest/best community together. It’s free and you can always change your mind later.” (I use a version of this, but much shorter, but only one or two videos a week because it’s… a lot.)
  • Smooth segues into CTAs after showing value also work. “This is how you do XYZ and make sure you hit that subscribe button and bell for more videos just like this.”
  • Teasing big upcoming videos also works. “And I’ll have the full review next week, so make sure you hit that subscribe button and bell so you don’t miss it.”
  • If you’re trend-jacking or know a particular video will over-perform, use the most impactful CTA because it will drive the most conversions from the best performing videos.
  • Graphical CTAs with no verbal component don’t convert well at all.
  • Jimmy does his CTA at the end because he’s worried if someone pauses to subscribe they’ll get distracted by another video in Suggested, maybe even stop watching, but his AVPV is ridiculous so the same rules don’t apply.
  • Find your videos that have the highest subscriber conversion numbers and make them into a short playlist that you can funnel new viewers into to increase conversion.
  • Also! Study those videos to see what worked and repeat it!
  • Don’t stack or split CTAs. “Like, Subscribe, fill out this form, jump up and down.” Don’t give people too many jobs all at once. They will not like you. If you want subs, ask for subs, and only subs, and don’t ask for anything else for 5+ minutes. (If something else is more important to you, do that instead, or alternate in different videos.) People will do one thing for you. People will feel confused or annoyed for multiple things and just do nothing.
  • Subscribers is a vanity metric. Getting someone to watch 3 of your videos will get you into their recommended, which is as good as a sub and better for growth. But vanity metrics can still be important. They can build your brand, your rep, your esteem, get you play buttons, partner programs, partner managers, collab opportunities, etc. So if you want them, that’s fine! That’s great! Just make a strategy and implement it. Test, iterate, improve, repeat!

M1X Macs (2021) & Pro Apps for iPad!

You had so many questions about the M1 Macs, upcoming M1X and M2 Macs, Macs vs. the iPad Pro, and Pro Apps for the upcoming A14X iPad Pro... I just had to answer them all!

0:00 - M1 Mac SSD Thrashing Issue?
2:10 - M2 iMac and Face ID?
3:13 - M1 7 vs 8 GPU: what does it mean for M2?
4:21 - iPhone vs. Mac FaceTime camera quality?
5:17 - When is the Apple Silicon Mac Pro?
6:18 - How will Apple differentiate M1 Mac from iPad?
9:05 - Any chance for in-person Apple Events in 2021?
10:37 - Final Cut Pro, Logic Pro, Xcode pro apps coming to iPad?
13:12 - New Apple Display alongside new M1X iMacs?
14:53 - Glowing Apple logos?
15:37 - M1 Macs and malware?
16:52 - Has Apple painted the Mac into a corner?