Episode 62: Technology Bytes. . .Let Loose Reaction

This is Technology Bytes, episode 62 for May 12th, 2024.

Technology Bytes is a microcast where I share brief bytes on interesting technology.

My name is Joel.

Enjoy, and here we go.

Last week I talked about Apple’s event that was coming up and was yet future, and I even said at the end of that one that I would be covering this week my thoughts on what the event revealed, and so that’s what I’m going to do.

I’m not sure if I said what the event name was.

It was Let Loose.

I’m not sure where that comes from, but this is the post-reaction to the announcements that Apple made on May 7th.

So after some brief thoughts on where Apple is and just some of the other technology they have, they jumped right into the iPad event, which is really what everyone was expecting and I had mentioned last week, and they started with the iPad Air, which now comes in two sizes, the 11-inch and 13-inch, and just as with the iPad Pro, same sizes, I’ll get to that in a minute, but really what Apple has done is stop calling it a 12.9, so I believe the iPads are the same size as the 12.9, the previous iPad Pro.

No real difference there, but still two sizes in the iPad Air.

They now come with the M.2 chip, which is a pretty significant bump from where they were.

Still have the liquid retina display.

Big change in that they moved the FaceTime camera to the landscape side, probably about time.

I don’t know about the rest of you, but my iPad is in landscape mode 90% of the time, if not more, and then they still have the Touch ID, which I feel is a bit of a miss, but still kind of the iPad Pro that I have at the moment is what the new iPad Air has become, but the missing of the Face ID is important to me, and so I really won’t be looking at those devices.

After that, Apple jumped into the star of the show, which is the iPad Pro.

They showed a little bit of a promo, which has turned into a commercial of basically using a big hydraulic press to compress all this tech and art and creation into the iPad Pro.

Many people found that to be disturbing because, I don’t know, destroying the physical of art when that’s what’s important.

To me, that’s not what Apple was saying at all.

They’re saying, you can be creative, you can use these creative tools, and you can do it all with the iPad Pro.

So, I don’t know.

Everyone has to find something to complain about.

So, same thing on the iPad Pro 11 and 13 inches, but they put an M4 in the iPad Pro, and while some had rumored that, Mark Gruber, most had thought that wasn’t going to happen, and it’s kind of interesting.

Apple’s fastest chip, their best chip, I guess, maybe, that they make is now coming out very first in the iPad Pro.

That’s kind of a big step.

I’d have to admit that I’m surprised, and the people I listen to are very surprised.

They changed the screen to OLED, which was thought and has come true, but as Apple does, they always do something with the display because it’s super important to how the iPad looks and reacts and the colors and the clarity and the refresh rates, and they did what they called a tandem OLED, so two layers of an OLED screen to get the brightness to a level that they really want on their device.

I can’t wait to see it in the store.

I’ll talk a little bit later about what I’m going to buy.

Again, they moved the camera to the landscape side, the FaceTime camera.

I think that’s the right move, and then it maintains Face ID as the way to unlock, and all in all, a great device.

Now, one of the interesting things is that it is the thinnest device that Apple has ever made, and that’s just pretty amazing when it is their biggest slab of glass, and the fact that they’ve cut a quarter of a pound out of the iPad Pro that I have for the new iPad Pro, I am really looking forward to taking a look at it and seeing what they’ve done, but it is kind of a feat of technology.

It looks very thin.

It will be really interesting to see how it feels in the hand.

Another thing that all the pundits were talking about was the Apple Pencil, because it was so prominent in their artwork for the event, and so, of course, everyone had anticipated a new Apple Pencil, and they did not disappoint.

Well, in the sense that they announced one, I don’t know if it’s disappointing in what they’ve come up with, but the new Apple Pencil Pro is a new device, and basically, they’ve added three things to the device that I think are pretty cool.

One is a squeeze action, so the device knows when it’s being squeezed, and developers can use these to do functions in their apps.

You have the double tap, which is what I always use to change between the writing utensil and the eraser.

I’m not sure why they don’t just let you flip it over, because now it has a gyroscope in it, and like a real pencil, they would know if it was being held upside down, and then they could just make that end be the eraser.

I don’t know.

Maybe that doesn’t make any sense, but I think it would.

And then they’ve also added barrel roll, so because it has a gyroscope in it, the iPad software knows the orientation of the pencil, and so when it is rolled in the hand, it has functionality that can happen there.

The one that I saw, they talked about Procreate and using the barrel roll to turn a device, and I’m not an artist, but I thought that was pretty neat, but the one that I really liked, I think, is just the tip of whatever paintbrush, pencil, whatever it is that you’re using, and the ability to change its orientation in relationship to the screen by rolling the pencil in your hand.

So if, and we’ll talk about purchasing later, but I definitely will be getting the Pencil Pro, even though my current Apple Pencil works with the new iPad Pro, it is missing features that I want, and hover is one of those, because I think that would be really nice, and I’m sure there’s some better response and better reaction to writing on the screen, but we’ll have to wait and see.

Apple also announced the Magic Keyboard.

For the iPad Air, that one looks very much the same as the one that I use for my, what is it, the 6th generation iPad Pro, and while it’s good, I have no complaints with it.

I think it works really well, and I really do like to use it when I need a keyboard, and the fact that it has a trackpad, that looks really cool.

But then the new Magic Keyboard for the iPad Pro has got, they talk about an aluminum hand rest, which is interesting, because the one I use is more kind of a material coverage, it’s kind of interesting, and it’s not necessarily plastic, but they’ve increased the size of the touchpad, of the, oh man, why is it escaping me, the trackpad, there you go, and the trackpad size on my MacBook Air is really big, and I use a trackpad for my iMac, and that’s a pretty big surface too, so I think having that bigger surface, having the haptic feedback, because it doesn’t really push, but it feels like it does, I’m real interested in looking at that keyboard, plus they’ve added a set of function keys on one row, and someone rightly pointed out that they are keys that have a function, but not really the function keys, like the F1, F2, that you might be used to, I didn’t pay enough attention to that, I really want to see it in the store, so I can look at it again, but the functions that are on that row, that they’ve added with the iPad Pro Magic Keyboard, you know, screen brightness, volume, some other things like that, so it will be interesting to see how that works.

So I already talked about the iPad Pro being the thinnest device, but really what that does, and it’s really a little bit odd maybe, in that the iPad Air, and I thought the definition, by definition the Air is like the lightest device, so not the least powerful or whatever, but my MacBook Air is much lighter, much, some reference there, than the MacBook Pros, so the iPad Air has been also lighter than the iPad Pros, but now with the new iPad Pros being thinner, they are actually lighter than the iPad Air in the weight category, and that, I don’t know, is that weird?

Some people are saying, why not make it as heavy as it used to be, it wasn’t all that heavy to begin with, and increase the battery life by another one and a half times or whatever, but they’ve chosen to do what they’ve chosen to do, I’m real interested in getting my hands on one to look at it, and see how it feels, and then in the next moments I will talk about my possible purchase process.

So my wife asked me, why do you always want the latest technology that Apple makes, and I guess it’s because I’m an Apple fanboy, but there are things in this new iPad Pro that I really like, the OLED screen I think is going to be fantastic, I carry my iPad all over my work environment, and having it be a quarter pound lighter might make a difference, but having it be more reactive to the pencil, I know that would make a difference, and I’m kind of making that up at the moment, but what I’m trying to do, is trying to figure out if I can swing a purchase of the iPad Pro, and what I would get is one that matches very similar to what I have, so it would be the iPad Pro 13 inch, with 256 GB of storage, now some may think that’s not enough, but the way I run my systems, the way I run my backups, that is plenty, and in a moment I’ll tell you why, but the other thing is that I want the Apple Pencil Pro, so that adds some money, I want the new Magic Keyboard, so that adds some significant money, and then I also use a smart folio case, when I’m not using the keyboard, because often in my walking around with the iPad, if I can’t open it flat, that doesn’t work very well, and the Magic Keyboard is not so much a mobile experience, as it is an at the desk experience, so if I can swing it, I will be purchasing the 13 inch iPad Pro, 256 GB with the Space Black, with the Black Magic Keyboard, with the Apple Pencil Pro, and they have a denim portfolio case, so hey, something new, and if I can swing it, that is what I will be purchasing, I should have looked this up at the beginning, but I did not, I was talking about 256 GB being enough for what I do, and so I looked it up just now, and right now I have 127 GB of the 256 GB available, so what does that mean?

I’m using just about half, maybe just a touch more than half, of the space that I currently have on my iPad Pro, and so I think that is enough, I don’t do a lot of video work, but I think even with that space, I could probably do that, if I could swing it, and since I’m going to keep it for a long time, I might do the 512, something I’m still looking at, either way, if I get one, I will let you know, because I will definitely be covering it on another episode of Technology Bytes, but that is all I have for today, look forward to any comments, questions, or concerns you might have about Apple’s announcements, but until next time, I want to thank you for being with me, and taking another bite of technology.

Joel Mearig @technologybytes