YouTube TV, adds sports, Turner

Less than one year after launching YouTube TV, the company is increasing its pricing to $40 per month from $35 per month as it adds Turner’s channels, which include TNT, CNN and TBS, and soon will be adding MLB Network and NBA TV, the company said.

I don’t care much about the $5 a month increase, but if I’m going to try this, I need to have Discovery and ID. They don’t have those yet.

States refile lawsuits to block repeal of U.S. net neutrality

A coalition of 22 state attorneys general and the District of Columbia on Thursday refiled legal challenges intended to block the Trump administration’s repeal of landmark rules designed to ensure a free and open internet from taking effect.

I hope this works.

How to get yourself out of a funk

Jason Kottke:

On Tuesday, I woke up feeling a bit tired, uninspired, and just generally not in the mood to tackle my to-do list for the day. I understand myself well enough by now to know how to react to this situation (most of the time) but was curious about how other people deal with such episodes. So I asked on Twitter: “What do you do to get yourself moving when this happens to you?” I got tons of interesting responses, which I’ve organized into some broader categories in the hope that they’ll help someone out in the future.

I may go for a walk and play some guitar today.

Copies and clones

Marco Arment:

App developers sometimes ask me what they should do when their features, designs, or entire apps are copied by competitors.

You know, Marco’s conclusions really upset me, but he’s right.

The Dalrymple Report: HomePod thoughts with Dave Mark

Subscribe to this podcast

I have known Dave Mark for a few years and I have never seen him so excited about a product as he is about HomePod. It made sense to get him on the show and talk about what he feels are the good and bad points about HomePod.

Brought to you by:

Jamf Now: Jamf Now is a device management solution for your Apple devices at work. We make management tasks simple and affordable, so you can support your users; no IT required. Create your free account!

HomePod Coaster

The latest in smart speaker innovation deserves state-of-the-art surface protection. Our Leather HomePod Coaster is designed in Minneapolis and handmade by skilled artisans. You’ll love it, but don’t put a ring on it. Your HomePod’s new home features durable & luxurious American full-grain leather with an ultra-soft leather backing because the only rings you should see in your home this season are of the Olympic variety on TV.

That didn’t take long. Seriously, if you’re going to put your HomePod on something, you should use Pad & Quill—I have several of their products and they are all high quality.

Apple confirms HomePod can leave white ring on wood surfaces

An unhappy discovery after we placed a HomePod on an oiled butcher-block countertop and later on a wooden side table was that it left a defined white ring in the surface. Other reviewers and owners (such as Pocket-lint, and folks on Twitter) have reported the same issue, which an Apple representative has confirmed. Apple says “the marks can improve over several days after the speaker is removed from the wood surface,” and if they don’t fade on their own, you can basically just go refinish the furniture—the exact advice Apple gave in an email to Wirecutter was to “try cleaning the surface with the manufacturer’s suggested oiling method.”

I didn’t have my HomePod placed on an oiled wood surface, so I never noticed this. Still, it doesn’t seem like this is something you would want to have happen when placing a speaker in your home.

Universal Audio releases the Friedman Buxom Betty amp plug-in

The 50-watt Friedman Buxom Betty is what guitar amp fantasies are made of — a gorgeous, hand-wired single-channel amp that delivers the dynamic shimmer of American vintage tube combos as well as the comely roar of classic British stacks.

I really like the unique sound of Friedman amps. The Buxom Betty cleans up really well, but it also gives you some grit when you need it.

Highlights from Apple’s shareholders meeting

The shareholders meeting is typical a recap of what happened with the company over the last year, as well as voting on proposals. Typically, not much happens, but if you want a recap you can read this.

Universal Audio releases the Helios Type 69 preamp and EQ plugin

Whether it was housed at Olympic in London, Musicland in Munich, or in the famed Rolling Stones’ mobile studio, the Helios Type 69 console was at the center of hundreds of iconic albums from rock’s “Golden Age.” From must-own albums by Led Zeppelin, The Beatles, Jimi Hendrix, and Pink Floyd, to Bob Marley and the Wailers, David Bowie, Black Sabbath, and AC/DC, the Type 69 delivered fat, unmistakable attitude, with a punchy midrange and an assertive growl.

The Helios was legendary.

Alto’s Odyssey launches next week

The wait is almost over. Alto’s Odyssey launches on the App Store next week on Thursday, February 22nd. The game will be available on iOS + tvOS, right at launch.

This is the follow-up to Alto’s Adventure, a great game from Ryan Cash.

Review: Apple HomePod

I’ve been using the HomePod for almost a week now. The device is part technological marvel with a little bit of magic thrown in to make it a really compelling device for every home. […]

Inside Apple’s HomePod Audio Lab

Apple didn’t build its audio products by choosing off-the-shelf components that any other company can use—it designed and built them from scratch. The testing for all its products happens in the company’s audio lab in Cupertino, Calif. Last week, they took me on a tour of the lab to show me what’s involved in making an audio product at Apple. […]

Apple reports record quarterly revenue

Apple on Thursday reported its fiscal first quarter results, posting revenue of $88.3 billion, an increase of 13 percent from the year-ago quarter and an all-time record. “We’re thrilled to report the biggest quarter in Apple’s history, with broad-based growth … Continued

Charvel releases five natural finish guitars

Every guitarist knows that each instrument has its own unique voice and feeling depending on the material used to craft the instrument. The type of wood, along with how it is treated in the factory, will determine what the instrument looks, sounds, and plays like. Charvel is excited to add 5 new “au natural” models that incorporate a variety of different woods and finishes to enhance the guitar’s natural brilliance.

Some people probably wouldn’t like a natural finish on their guitar, especially for the type of hard rock that Charvel guitars are known for, but I don’t mind at all. I buy and play guitars based on the sound, but I also think these look really good.

U.S. investigating Apple over slowing iPhones

The U.S. Department of Justice and the Securities and Exchange Commission are investigating whether Apple Inc. violated securities laws concerning its disclosures about a software update that slowed older iPhone models, according to people familiar with the matter.

The government has requested information from the company, according to the people, who asked not to be named because the probe is private. The inquiry is in early stages, they cautioned, and it’s too soon to conclude any enforcement will follow.

With the hubbub over this, I’m not surprised that the government is asking questions. I don’t think this will go any farther considering the reason Apple did this was to actually help phones last longer without unexpectedly quitting.

The most spectacular eclipse of 2018 is tomorrow

Once in a blue moon is only once every few years, but once in a super, blue, blood moon is just once every few decades. This rare alignment of three different lunar phenomena—a total lunar eclipse, a full moon at perigee, and a blue moon—will be visible in the night and early morning skies for much of the world on Wednesday, January 31.

This should be spectacular.

Apple’s Eddy Cue announced as feature speaker at SXSW 2018

Featured Speakers include internationally renowned chef José Andrés; Apple’s Senior Vice President of Internet Software and Services Eddy Cue; award-winning actress, writer, and director Lena Dunham; actor and writer Ethan Hawke; Star Wars VIII: The Last Jedi director Rian Johnson; entrepreneur and model Karlie Kloss; Waymo CEO John Krafcik; Oscar-winning director, writer, and producer Spike Lee; activist and technologist Chelsea Manning; executive editor of Recode Kara Swisher; Westworld cast members Evan Rachel Wood, James Marsden, and Jeffrey Wright; YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki; and many more.

It will be interesting to see what Eddy has to say.

The Grammy’s viewership decline and the future

Om Malik:

Why sit through the whole show, when you know the best bits are going to be online soon, to be viewed later. Bruno Mars and Cardi B performance from Grammys has 5.2 million views on YouTube. The performances of Logic, Keesha, Lady Gaga and Sam Smith garnered a whopping 4 million views; the numbers are staggering compared to the “linear television” viewership.

Viewership for the Grammy’s was way down this year and I think Om is right on the reason why.

Apple delays iOS features to focus on reliability

Pushed into 2019 are a number of features including a refresh of the home screen and in-car user interfaces, improvements to core apps like mail and updates to the picture-taking, photo editing and sharing experiences.

This isn’t a new strategy for Apple—they have used this strategy in macOS for a number of years and it’s worked great. With all of the new features in iOS over the past several years, the time had to come when Apple took a step back and focused on reliability and performance.

Finding dead CSS

During a performance workshop I was running this week, I was reminded of a technique for finding dead CSS on a live site. Note that I’m purposely not using the phrase ‘unused CSS’, but ‘dead CSS’

This is great if you have a lot of code.

MacBook Pro, Final Cut Pro X and the LA Film Community

Gimpirea’s is one of three teams of filmmakers involved in a month-long filmmaking workshop connecting creative professionals with emerging talent. The teams worked with powerful tools from Apple, including the MacBook Pro, iMac and Final Cut Pro X, as well as the RED Raven camera for shooting, and worked alongside Apple Retail experts and industry pros. LA-based independent filmmaking collective We Make Movies provided post-production supervision to help the filmmakers realize their visions.

This is a wonderful feature story on Apple’s web site.

Logic Pro X updated with Smart Tempo, new plug-ins

Apple on Thursday updated its professional music software, Logic Pro X, adding some new features and plug-ins. Apple told me that this is the 20th free update Apple has released since the launch of Logic Pro X. […]

Apple releases Swift Playgrounds 2.0

The latest version of Swift Playgrounds includes new features to make it easier to discover even more content. Now you can subscribe to playgrounds from your favorite third-party creators, then browse and download their content directly within Swift Playgrounds. You’ll automatically see new and updated playgrounds in your subscriptions, a content gallery that shows all playgrounds in a single view, new robots, and much more.

Swift Playgrounds is a wonderful tool to learn how to code.

Apple brings health records to iPhone

Apple today introduced a significant update to the Health app with the iOS 11.3 beta, debuting a feature for customers to see their medical records right on their iPhone. The updated Health Records section within the Health app brings together hospitals, clinics and the existing Health app to make it easy for consumers to see their available medical data from multiple providers whenever they choose. Johns Hopkins Medicine, Cedars-Sinai, Penn Medicine and other participating hospitals and clinics are among the first to make this beta feature available to their patients.

Apple’s advancements in health, fitness, and medical in the past few years are incredible.