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, 10.5-inch iPad Pro (LTE 256GB), iPhone X (256GB), Apple Thunderbolt Display, an Apple Watch (Series 3 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 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

Twelve South is best-known for its BookBook cases for MacBooks and iPhones, but subsequently expanded into a wide range of stylish accessories for Apple kit – they have products for MacBooks, iMac, iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch and more.

Its latest product, launched earlier this month, is a Bluetooth transmitter designed to let you use AirPods or other wireless headphones with in-flight entertainment systems or other equipment with a 3.5mm headphone socket: AirFly

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iOS 11 satisfied one of our feature requests: a function which mutes and automatically replies to incoming messages while you’re driving. Some 781 million miles of driving data seems to support the contention that it helps to reduce distracted driving.

A new Apple patent application describes what may be the next step in the development of this feature …

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Sylvania HomeKit Light Strip

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg was widely criticized yesterday for failing to answer many of the questions put to him by the European Parliament.

He promised written answers to these, and some have been provided, but more than half of the unanswered questions remain so …

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Older readers might still remember when Macs made the transition to OS X, more recently rebranded to macOS. But if you still kind of think of that as the ‘new’ OS, as of today it’s actually now been around for longer than all the preceding versions – collectively and colloquially known as Classic Mac OS …

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On-demand food delivery service Postmates is the latest company to be featured in a long-running series of Apple Pay promotions.

Use Apple Pay for your first order through the app, and you’ll get free delivery …

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May 23

A class action lawsuit was filed earlier this month over alleged design defects in the butterfly keyboard of the 12-inch MacBook and current MacBook Pro models.

A second suit has now been filed, this one claiming that Apple is in breach of no fewer than five laws …

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When iPhone assembler Foxconn announced that it was building a new display plant in Wisconsin, there was much celebrating over the $10B investment. But it now seems that the company may be planning to scale back the plant …

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I’ve written many times that the integrated ecosystem offered by Apple is one of the company’s greatest strengths. The Handoff feature is a great example of that integration. It’s really handy to be able to do start reading something in Safari on my Mac, and then continue reading it on my iPhone, for example.

Handoff works with most Apple apps: Mail, Maps, Safari, Reminders, Calendar, Contacts, Pages, Numbers and Keynote – but not Music. That’s what I’d like to fix …

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With the European Parliament having passed some extremely tough privacy legislation, and many members being well-versed in the issues as they relate to tech companies, there were high hopes for yesterday’s grilling of Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

Tough and pertinent questions were indeed asked, far more so than in Congress – but Zuckerberg failed to answer more than 40 of them …

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Apple’s search for a major new campus has been going on for some time, with a wide range of potentially suitable locations to choose from.

It’s been reported that Apple may have shortlisted two locations, in Northern Virginia and North Carolina, with the latter said to be the favorite, thanks to generous tax incentives. Apple has chosen a very different approach to Amazon’s search for its new campus, and WSJ piece today suggests there are pros & cons to each …

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May 22

AllianceBernstein analysts have suggested that the on-demand streaming subscription service YouTube TV is the television service Apple should have built.

They point to how YouTube has persuaded many to become cord-cutters, using the service to replace their cable subscription – and they present an interesting theory about why Apple has made such little progress with its own TV plans …

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If you’re not familiar with our new opinion format, Change My View, please check out our guidelines before commenting – thanks!

Previous pieces have addressed the MacBook Pro keyboard controversy, whether it’s time for iOS devices to switch to USB-C ports and whether Apple should lose the patent trial. This time I’m looking at an issue I suspect will be no less controversial.

My argument is that Apple should neither solicit nor accept tax incentives when seeking a new location for a campus …

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If you enjoyed watching Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg squirming while being asked difficult questions and trying to keep a straight face while being asked stupid ones during his testimony to Congress, you might want to tune in to the sequel today …

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Razer has announced the Core X, a new entry-level eGPU enclosure which is compatible with Macs with a Thunderbolt 3/USB-C port.

Give your thin and light laptop the power of a full gaming rig. Whether you’re hunting down enemies in an apocalypse or designing your own 3D world, the Razer Core X delivers desktop-class graphics to your laptop instantly. Compatible with Thunderbolt 3 Windows 10 or Mac laptops …

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We learned back in February that the latest game in the Total War franchise was coming to macOS later in the year, and Feral Interactive has today announced that it will be available on May 24.

The developer has also advised which Macs will be able to run the game …

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When Apple put an NFC chip into the iPhone 7 and later, it was initially limited to Apple Pay. iOS 11 opened up access to third-party developers, and YubiKey has just taken advantage of that to allow one of its hardware keys to login to iOS apps.

The YubiKey NEO is a USB key has so far been used mostly for Mac and PCs … 

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IDC figures showed that Apple managed to grow global iPhone sales in Q1 despite falling sales across the smartphone market as a whole, and new data from Counterpoint shows that the same was true in the US market – to a far more dramatic extent …

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May 21

Call for Facebook to be broken up as EU says it will livestream Zuckerberg’s testimony

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s testimony to Congress was the video stream that launched a thousand memes – and now meme creators will get another opportunity. The European Parliament has announced that its meeting with Zuckerberg tomorrow will also be livestreamed …

Apple has fallen one place in the Fortune 500 rankings, based on company revenues.

Last year, Apple retained its #3 slot after falling behind major AAPL investor Berkshire Hathaway, but overtaking Exxon Mobile. This year, however, it has slipped to #4 …

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We don’t yet know when Apple will choose to support 5G in future iPhones and iPads, but the telecoms industry is gearing-up to have at least some level of 5G service operational next year.

One critical element of making 5G connectivity widely available is ensuring enough cells in cities – with ‘small cells’ key to this …

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