About the Author

Ben Lovejoy

@benlovejoy

Ben Lovejoy is a British technology writer who started his career on PC World and has written for dozens of computer and technology magazines, as well as numerous national newspapers, business and in-flight magazines. He has also written two technothriller novels , a romcom novel and an SF novella series.

He is old enough to have owned the original Macintosh. He currently owns a maxed-out 2016 MacBook Pro 15, a MacBook Air 11, 12.9-inch iPad Pro (LTE 256GB), iPhone X (256GB), Apple Thunderbolt Display, an Apple Watch (Series 4 WiFi) and two HomePods – and suspects it might be cheaper to have a cocaine habit than his addiction to all things anodised aluminum.

He thinks wires are evil and had a custom desk made to hide them, known as the OC Desk for obvious reasons.

He’s known for his op-ed pieces (Opinion, Comment and Change My View) and diary pieces, exploring his experience of Apple products over time, for a more rounded review:

He considers 1000 miles a good distance for a cycle ride, and Chernobyl a suitable tourist destination. What can we say, he’s that kind of chap.

He speaks fluent English but only broken American, so please forgive any Anglicised spelling in his posts.

If @benlovejoy-ing him on twitter, please follow him first so that he can DM you if appropriate. If you have information you can pass on, you can also email him. If you would like to comment on one of his pieces, please do so in the comments – he does read them all.

If you enjoy his work and would like to express your thanks, you can save this link as your Amazon bookmark. It will take you to the usual U.S. homepage, and you’ll shop as usual at the same rates, but Amazon will pay a small commission (typically 2-4%).

Ben Lovejoy's Favorite Gear

Today

The M1 Mac mini power consumption and thermal output figures highlight just how much more efficient Apple Silicon is than the Intel chips that powered older models …

expand full story

WhatsApp Mac app now requires use of Face ID or Touch ID on your iPhone

If you want to add your account to the WhatsApp Mac app, you’ll now need to use either Face ID or Touch ID on your iPhone in order to activate it. The new requirement applies to any iPhone with either of the biometric login features …

Apple has been declared the world’s most valuable brand in the annual Brand Finance Global 500 index after a five-year hiatus.

While AAPL was the first company to reach a $2T market cap, brand value indices try to work out the value of the brand name itself, as distinct from the business. Specifically, it estimates the fees that could be earned from licensing the brand name …

expand full story

Apple announced yesterday that the final quarter of last year was an all-time record for the company, and IDC says it also recorded the highest iPhone sales ever.

While Apple revealed iPhone sales in terms of revenue at $65.6B, it was left to market intelligence companies to estimate what that means in unit shipments. Three of them weighed in today, with IDC presenting the rosiest picture.

The company says that Apple set two records in the holiday quarter …

expand full story

Yesterday

Today will see the announcement of AAPL earnings Q1 2021 – the company’s first fiscal quarter of the year, which is the final calendar quarter of 2020. The coronavirus crisis made things too uncertain for Apple to offer any guidance, so we have only analyst estimates to go on until the company reveals the numbers at 2 pm PT/5 pm ET.

The holiday quarter is always a big one, all the more so when it captures 100% of the launch sales of the iPhone 12 – and has M1 Mac sales in the mix too …

expand full story

If there’s one topic that won’t go away no matter how many times Apple dismisses it, it’s the idea of a touchscreen Mac.

The latest angle on it is that this is Dan Riccio’s secretive new role

expand full story

Test your streaming video connection in latest Ookla Speedtest app

If you want to test your streaming video, the latest version of the Ookla Speedtest app now lets you do so, showing the maximum resolution your broadband or mobile data connection will support without buffering …

Verizon mmWave 5G coverage will almost double this year, says carrier

Verizon mmWave 5G coverage is set to almost double this year, according to a statement in the company’s latest earnings report. The carrier says that it will add 14,000 mmWave 5G locations to the 16,000 it already has.

The announcement does, however, need to be understood in context …

January 26

Yesterday’s report that we may see Apple Watch blood glucose monitoring when the Series 7 is released this year has generated both excitement and skepticism.

Excitement because it could provide a far easier method of monitoring blood sugar levels than current devices, which require a pin-prick blood sample. Skepticism because non-invasive measurement has been a goal for a great many years, with very limited success to date. The closest we’ve got so far is a rice-grain sized sensor embedded into the skin that can then be read without any further puncturing of the skin…

expand full story

Spotify audiobooks have so far seemed a forgotten offering, with just a handful of titles added last year, but there is now an indication that the company is gearing up for a more serious push into this market.

The audio streaming company has just added nine titles, all classics with new narrations …

expand full story

Apple already makes a titanium Apple Watch, but a patent granted today could pave the way for titanium MacBooks, iPads, and iPhones too.

The patent describes how Apple could overcome the challenge of giving titanium an aesthetically pleasing finish, and follows a patent granted last month regarding a method of making a true matte black MacBook

expand full story

The announcement of a change to the WhatsApp privacy policy saw many users looking for the most private messaging app to use instead. Signal and Telegram were the prime candidates in cross-platform apps, with the former having the strongest privacy protections, as no personal data is linked to users.

Apple was subsequently sued by a former US ambassador for allowing Telegram on the App Store after it was used by hate groups to threaten violence, and now existing and former Signal employees have expressed concern that the not-for-profit messaging app is failing to address the same issue …

expand full story

January 25

A look at the iconic watches which inspired five Apple Watch faces

If you’ve ever wondered what inspired the design of Apple Watch faces, Carrot Fertility co-founder Arun Venkatesan has put together a really interesting look at the iconic watches behind them …

TSMC COVID-19 countermeasures boosted after fresh outbreak

A report today says that TSMC COVID-19 countermeasures are being significantly stepped up after an fresh outbreak of the coronavirus in Taiwan …

A Korean report claims that an Apple Watch blood sugar sensor will be included in the Series 7 device, when it is launched later this year.

With health applications a major selling point of the Apple Watch, it has long been expected that the Cupertino company would want to expand its medical capabilities …

expand full story

A set of independent tests shows that the AirPods Max battery life lives up to Apple’s claims.

Apple makes two key claims about battery life. First, that the over-ear headphones last for “up to” 20 hours with both ANC and spatial audio in use, and they actually did somewhat better than this under testing …

expand full story

The future of the Touch Bar was thrown into doubt earlier this month thanks to separate reports from Ming-Chi Kuo and Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman. The former said that the touch-sensitive strip was definitely being removed, while the latter said Apple was considering it.

There doesn’t seem to be any real consensus view of the Touch Bar, making it a tough call for Apple, but one Apple patent does describe a possible compromise approach that takes the company some way toward a fully dynamic keyboard …

expand full story

January 22

Face ID for Mac ‘developed’ by Apple but not coming soon; 5G same

We’ve long expected Apple to offer Face ID for Mac models, just as it does for the iPhone and iPad Pro. Bloomberg’s report on an upcoming higher-end MacBook Air has a mix of good and bad news on this front.

Another feature some have long wanted for MacBooks is the ability to connect to mobile data directly when Wi-Fi isn’t available. The report says the position is the same for both features: They are coming, but not soon …

An analyst note earlier this week suggested that iPhone 12 mini production for this quarter had been cut by 2M units in response to disappointing sales. It said this had been balanced by better-than-expected sales of the more expensive iPhone 12 Pro, and that Apple was upping production of this by the same amount.

A new supply-chain report today echoes this, and provides a little more detail …

expand full story

January 21

iPhone trade-in gets you twice as much as a comparable Android one, a year in

New data provided by a trade-in website shows that an iPhone trade-in gets you twice as much as trading in a comparable flagship Android smartphone a year after you bought it. Both comparisons are calculated as a percentage of the purchase price, to ensure that they are like-for-like …

Powered by WordPress.com VIP