Apple unleashed an M2-powered update to a couple of its product lines today, with the introduction of a new Mac Mini, as well as refreshed MacBook Pro 14- and 16-inch laptops, now available with M2 Pro and M2 Max chips inside.
Apple didn’t invite the press to Apple Park for this reveal, but it did publish this 19-minute video talking about the new chips, new computers, and how impressive they all presumably are.
As we approach Samsung’s February launch event, we’re starting to get a clearer image of what features its upcoming Galaxy smartphones could have. Today the company revealed a new 200-megapixel smartphone sensor that it says is already in mass production, and its specs match what’s rumored to be coming to the Galaxy S23 Ultra almost exactly.
But if you’re interested in more far out gadget news, then you might want to check out Dave2D’s latest video, where the YouTuber has gotten his hands on an alleged dummy model of the oft-rumored Pixel foldable. If accurate, the foldable could be planned for launch later this year.
For now, here’s a silly tweet to start your day:
Stay tuned, as we continue to update this list with the most important news of today: Tuesday, January 17th, 2023.
Microsoft set to lay off thousands of employees
Update January 18th, 9:45AM ET: In a memo issued Wednesday morning, Microsoft confirmed plans to fire over 10,000 employees by the end of March. The original story continues below.Read Article >
Microsoft is preparing to announce job cuts tomorrow. Sky News reports that thousands of roles will be cut, with the software giant said to be looking at cutting around 5 percent of its workforce. With more than 220,000 employees at Microsoft, that could mean more than 10,000 layoffs.
Apple reportedly shelved its plans to release AR glasses anytime soon
Another Apple rumor from Bloomberg reporter Mark Gurman focuses on the company’s efforts to create game-changing augmented reality glasses that could make picking up your iPhone obsolete — if they’re ever built.Read Article >
The race to develop consumer-friendly AR glasses is in full swing, despite notable misfires like Google’s abandoned Glass project and Microsoft’s now enterprise- and military-focused HoloLens.
Now Twitter is selling one year of blue check privileges at a discounted rate of $84
Ever since Elon Musk took over Twitter, one of his aims has been to build up its subscription business, launching a revamped Twitter Blue package that gives subscribers a “verified” checkmark, reduced ads, preferential treatment by its algorithm, and other benefits. The subscription, which is still available only via iOS or the web, now offers a discounted annual subscription for customers, which you can pick instead of the $8 per month web pricing or $11 iOS price that shifts Apple’s 30 percent fee to the consumer.Read Article >
If you’d like to kick in some extra funds right away, Twitter Blue annual subscriptions are available on the web for $84 per year, saving you a little over 12 percent compared to paying for a monthly web subscription — or 36 percent over paying via iOS.
You can finally repair your own Samsung Galaxy S22
Samsung is finally adding Galaxy S22 parts and manuals to the self-repair program it established last year with partner iFixit. Just as we’re preparing for the Unpacked event that will launch the Galaxy S23, customers can now get access to genuine replacement parts for the S22, S22 Plus, and S22 Ultra, as well as the Galaxy Book Pro (15-inch) and Pro 360 notebooks.Read Article >
When Samsung first launched the self-repair program in August, customers only had access to limited OEM parts like replacement back covers, USB-C charge ports, and screens for previous generation Galaxy S20 and S21 devices, as well as the Tab S7. Even with the addition of S22 devices, not much has changed in terms of what customers can officially fix.
Now there are even fewer reasons to get a Fitbit smartwatch
The writing is on the wall for Fitbit smartwatches. Today, the company announced its ending support for Pandora and Deezer on the Sense, Versa 2, and Versa 3 smartwatches. While you can still control media on your phone from the wrist, Fitbit users will no longer be able to download Pandora stations or add Deezer playlists to their smartwatches. That means that after March 31st, no Fitbit smartwatch will support onboard music.Read Article >
Per 9to5Google, Fitbit sent out an email stating that support for Pandora and Deezer will end as of March 31st. At that point, Fitbit users won’t be able to add new music content from those services. They also won’t be able to play anything that was previously downloaded. While Pandora and Deezer might not be as popular as Spotify, they’re currently the only ways to play music stored on a Fitbit device. Last year, Fitbit nixed the ability to manually transfer music onto their watches from a computer.
Samsung will unveil two ‘premium’ mobile devices at Unpacked, says TM Roh
Samsung has just published a blog post by TM Roh setting the stage for February 1st, when the company will hold its first in-person launch event since the start of the pandemic. Roh doesn’t offer many concrete details but specifically mentions improvements to its smartphone camera system and tells us to expect two new devices that “set the new premium standard for innovation.”Read Article >
Reading between the lines, it looks like that means two new Ultra devices — a lot like last year when we got the Note-esque S22 Ultra and massive Tab S8 Ultra tablet.
New podcast creation has fallen off a cliff
Hope you all had a great weekend! We’ve got some big Hot Pod Summit updates for you all, as well as the latest in audio news. Today, Audible lands another star, Spotify experiences another outage, and creators stop bothering to make podcasts when it is so hard to get anyone to listen to them.Read Article >
Who will be at Hot Pod Summit?
2023 will be the year of the display
The laptops of 2023 will get new chips and new graphics. Many will get new touchpads, some will get new fans, and a few will get funky styluses. But some of the coolest, weirdest, and most exciting updates are coming to screens.Read Article >
Just a couple years ago, buying a high-end laptop display — particularly for gaming — meant figuring out your priorities. You could have a high resolution or a high refresh rate. You could have OLED or a device that was actually affordable.
Jan 17Don’t worry, the 14-inch MacBook Pro also has longer battery life this year.
Why didn’t Apple mention the new 14-inch MBP’s battery during its 19-minute preso? My guess: Apple couldn’t say “the longest battery life ever in a Mac” because it’s actually shorter than the “20 hours” of the battery champ 13-inch.
Still, both the new 14-inch and 16-inch claim to offer an extra hour over their M1 Pro predecessors, and the testing methodology hasn’t changed. I’m guessing we’ll get 11 hours from the 14-inch this year.
Discord acquires Gas, the popular app for teens to compliment each other
Discord has acquired the Gas social app. The poll-based app has become popular among teens in recent months, allowing friends to share compliments with each other. The app is designed for anonymous compliments and positive affirmations or, as kids say, gassing your friends up.Read Article >
Gas has polls that ask users to vote for things like the most beautiful person they’ve met or the classmate that isn’t afraid to get in trouble. It has soared in popularity among high schoolers since launching in August. One of the co-creators of TBH, a very similar teenager app acquired and shut down by Facebook, created Gas, which has caught the attention of more than 1 million daily active users and 30,000 new users per hour in October.
Coachella will continue streaming on YouTube through 2026
Can’t fly to California for Coachella? No problem. You’ll still be able to stream the annual arts and music festival live from the comfort of your own home for at least another few years.Read Article >
YouTube and Coachella organizers Goldenvoice announced on YouTube’s official blog that they’ve renewed their exclusive partnership through 2026. As a result, fans around the world will continue to stream the festival live for free from YouTube as well as watch on-demand videos of performances.
The Willow breast pump now has an Apple Watch app to make pumping slightly less terrible
The Willow 3.0 in-bra breast pump is designed to help nursing parents carry on with their lives while pumping, and its latest new feature adds an extra level of convenience: a companion app for the Apple Watch. The app lets you change modes, control suction, and track your sessions without having to fiddle with the pump itself or pick up your phone. That doesn’t sound particularly earth-shattering, but in case you weren’t aware, I’ll let you in on a little secret: breast pumping is awful, and anything that makes it a little less awful is a godsend.Read Article >
Throughout much of recent history, using a breast pump meant stopping everything that you’re doing every few hours to sit tethered to a bowling ball-sized contraption plugged into a wall outlet. But within the past few years, in-bra pumps like Willow started popping up — small, self-contained, battery-powered, and designed to be used hands-free. They’re especially handy if you want to, oh, I don’t know, do literally anything outside of your house for longer than three hours without having to run back home and pump.
New York faces a new legal fight over a proposed crypto-mining power plant
Environmental groups are pushing New York state to scrutinize a crypto mining company’s purchase of a gas-fired power plant, contending in a new lawsuit that turning the power plant into a crypto mine would go against the state’s climate goals and dump more pollution on nearby neighborhoods.Read Article >
Sierra Club and the Clean Air Coalition of Western New York filed a suit on Friday that challenges the New York Public Service Commission’s (PSC) approval of the sale. Under state law, the commission has to give the green light before the transfer of ownership of a power plant can take place. Until now, the commission has mostly focused on whether such a sale would affect residents’ electricity rates or create a monopoly. The commission needs to start taking climate change and environmental injustice into consideration because of a sweeping climate law passed in 2019, the new lawsuit argues.
Jan 17Twitter rights its view count wrongs.
Okay, well, the real wrong was forcing us to see them at all; Twitter hasn’t done anything about that yet (and probably won’t). But hey, now the indicator is to the right of the retweet and like numbers.
- What’s next for the MacBook Pro?
Plugged-in analyst Ming-Chi Kuo is updating the rumors for 2024’s MacBook Pro lineup before we even have a chance to touch the laptops Apple announced today.
In a shocking surprise, he’s anticipating new M3 Pro / Max chips inside them, made on a 3nm process launching in the first half of the year. Sure, you could wait for those, but if the rumors hold true, the more significant jump could be due in 2025 with OLED and touchscreens.
- You got to coordinate — your power cables.
If you thought you were safe from new gear envy (talking about you, Dan Seifert), maybe this one thing could get you into a new M2-powered MacBook Pro 14- or 16-inch.
9to5Mac points out that, just like the refreshed M2 MacBook Airs introduced last year, these new models also come with color-matched MagSafe charging cables, so you don’t have to choose between your Space Gray aesthetic and dedicated fast charging.
John Witherspoon would approve.
Taylor Swift and the music industry’s next $20
I have this theory that music is usually about five years ahead of the rest of media in terms of its relationship to tech — whether that’s new formats based on new tech, like vinyl to CDs, new business models like streaming, or simply being disrupted by new kinds of artists who use new forms of promotion, like TikTok, in unexpected ways. I’ve always thought that if you can wrap your head around what’s happening to the music industry, you can pretty much see the future of TV or movies or the news or whatever because the music industry just moves that fast.Read Article >
I was talking about this with my friend Charlie Harding, the co-host of Switched on Pop, and he said that he thinks the upcoming Taylor Swift The Eras Tour is itself the end of an era in music — that the age of cheap streaming services is coming to an inevitable conclusion and that something has to change in order for the industry to sustain itself in the future.
Watch Apple’s 19-minute M2 MacBook Pro and Mini intro video
Today’s introduction of new Pro and Max variants of Apple’s M2 chip — as well as MacBook Pro laptops and a Mac Mini desktop to hold them — didn’t come with a trip to Apple Park. Don’t worry, though; the company still put its presentation machine to work on this 19-minute video singing the praises of Apple silicon.Read Article >
If you need to hear what the new 14- and 16-inch MacBook Pro can do with the higher-horsepower chips instead of simply reading a spec sheet or watch coders do their thing while impressed with the extra battery life, it’s all here in this 19-minute infomercial.
The Mac Pro is now Apple’s last machine with an Intel chip
In the process of updating its Mac Mini lineup, Apple has discontinued the last remaining Intel-based Mac Mini computers. Its online store now lists three main variants of the miniature desktop computer powered by M2 and M2 Pro chips, with no sign of the Intel Core i5-powered model that was listed on the site as of earlier this week.Read Article >
Discontinuing this old Intel-powered Mac Mini means that Apple has just one computer left to transition to its own Arm-based Apple silicon chips: the Mac Pro. The company initially said it expected the transition from Intel to Apple silicon to take around two years when it first announced the initiative in June 2020, meaning it’s missed its self-imposed deadline to transition its entire Mac lineup onto its own silicon.
Apple’s M1 iPad Air is back down to its lowest price
Apple just announced that its MacBook Pro and Mac Mini lineup are getting the latest M2 chips. That’s great news if you need a fast computer, but if you’re in the market for a speedy tablet instead, check out this $100 discount on the 2022 iPad Air that has an M1 processor. You can grab the latest model for $499.99.Read Article >
This might actually be the iPad for you if you’re considering Apple’s 10th-gen base iPad, which starts at $449.99. While they might look similar (that’s intentional), the iPad Air is the better choice in several ways: it’s faster, it supports the second-gen Apple Pencil with wireless charging support, its USB-C charging port supports faster data transfer, and it has a better laminated display. It also has access to a better (but not necessarily cheaper) accessory ecosystem, like the Magic Keyboard.
Apple announces MacBook Pros with M2 Pro and M2 Max chips
Apple has announced new 14- and 16-inch MacBook Pros, featuring its latest M2 Pro and Max chips. The M2 Pro model will launch with a 12-core CPU, up to 19-core GPU, and up to 32GB of unified memory, while the M2 Max includes up to 38 cores of GPU power and support for up to 96GB of unified memory.Read Article >
The new 14-inch MacBook Pro with M2 Pro starts at $1,999, with the 16-inch model starting at $2,499. Both are available to order online today and will start shipping and appearing in Apple stores on January 24th.
Apple announces a Mac Mini with the M2 and M2 Pro
The Mac Mini is Apple’s next computer to get the bump up to the M2 chip — and this time around, it’s being offered with the Pro version of Apple’s processor, too. The new model was announced this morning in a press release, with a starting price of $599, and is available to order today, with availability beginning Tuesday, January 24th.Read Article >
The Mac Mini’s baseline configuration includes the M2 chip, 8GB of RAM, and 256GB of storage. It features an HDMI port, gigabit ethernet, and a standard headphone jack, alongside two USB-A ports and two Thunderbolt 4 (USB-C) ports on the rear of the device — an upgrade from the Thunderbolt 3 ports on the previous generation.
2024 Chevy Corvette E-Ray first ride: iconic sports car look with an electric surge
It’s been 70 years since the first Corvette made its debut at GM’s Motorama in New York City, and to celebrate, Chevy is giving its flagship sports car a unique makeover: its very first hybrid gas-electric motor.Read Article >
The 2024 Corvette E-Ray — heavily teased and accidentally leaked over the past year — was revealed today in Manhattan, just a stone’s throw from where the first model, then known as the EX-122, made its first public appearance while dressed in polo white with a red bucket seat interior trim.
- Green light.
Rumors point to incoming product news from Apple today, and of course, we’ll be on top of whatever is or is not announced.
Otherwise, a securities fraud trial over Elon Musk’s 2018 tweets about taking Tesla private is starting today in San Francisco (not Texas, as he would have preferred).
Until then, you can get a better sense of the exec via today’s feature from Zoe Schiffer, Casey Newton, and Alex Heath.
Nick Cave says imitation ChatGPT song is ‘a grotesque mockery of what it is to be human’
Nick Cave isn’t too impressed with ChatGPT’s capacity for music. On his personal blog, the singer-songwriter gave a withering rebuke to a set of lyrics written by the AI chatbot “in the style of Nick Cave.”Read Article >
“What ChatGPT is, in this instance, is replication as travesty,” writes Cave. “ChatGPT may be able to write a speech or an essay or a sermon or an obituary but it cannot create a genuine song ... Songs arise out of suffering, by which I mean they are predicated upon the complex, internal human struggle of creation and, well, as far as I know, algorithms don’t feel.”