[00:00:14] Erik: Welcome to Examining, a technology focused podcast that dives deep, close, and welcome to another episode of the Examining podcast. Good evening, Mr. Hans. How's it going, Erik?
It's going well. I'm a little bit under the weather, but I don't think my voice sounds so terrible that people would notice. So I think we'll be okay. Hopefully you're not also sick.
[00:00:50] Kris: I was, but it's like the first time in many years.
I don't know what happened this time around, but usually if I ever do, I crash and burn after the semester is over.
[00:01:05] Erik: I'm like you. I'm usually not sick during the semester. That's unlikely, of course. I had just told someone that I hadn't been sick for years, and then of course I got sick, so I guess it's on me. That being said, it's not the end of the world, it's fine. We'll be at home for the next week, it's reading week, but we have a pretty packed roundup today, and in fact, our episode is the Big Four. Kind of Big Three in a bit, but the Big Four hardware roundup. So I think today we're going to cover what's happened over the last month regarding hardware announcements. So perhaps we can start with Apple. They have a September iPhone event every year, so The Verge here has a nice summary, as well as other blogs of all the announcements. I think we're going to cover Apple, then Microsoft, then Google, so perhaps, maybe I'll just start and say that unsurprisingly, Apple has launched the I 15 and the I 15 Max. And the I 15 pro. And the I 15 pro, Max.
All of the phones now have ditched the notch, which was introduced much to the chagrin of those of us who really liked the fingerprint reader. So the notch for Face ID is now kind of this hole punch that they call the dynamic island, which I have to say I think is an improvement. I had an iPhone eight before, so I've never had a touch. Sorry? A face ID, iPhone. I actually have the regular iPhone 15. I made the mistake of ordering it and then picking up on launch day, which was a bananas event. But that being said, and then they moved to USBC because the European Union had forced them to, as I understand.
[00:03:09] Kris: Yeah, exactly. I don't think people realize with all the accessories that are put out there, having that Lightning port generated millions, maybe even, who knows, billions of dollars in royalties because people had to go and.
[00:03:27] Erik: License and license the port. Yeah. So a cable like a Lightning to USBC cable was always a lot more money than a USBC to USBC cable because USBC is an open standard. Do they have to pay a patent license for USB or is it just Open?
[00:03:42] Kris: I actually have no idea, I'm not sure. But the fact is kind of like the international standard and that's why EU, they made it mandatory because at least it's more accessible.
[00:03:58] Erik: So I would have a couple of views on that. I understand the convenience of having USB C since the Mac has USBC, the iPad Pro has USBC and the iPad Air, and so a lot of their devices have it. I will say that I'm not a huge fan of the idea that a government body would then make an enforcement decision based on currently available tech, because then what if another port comes out and we're stuck on an old one? Or they could have picked micro USB. I don't trust the government to figure out what the best solution is. I will also say too, then this is an unpopular opinion. A USBC is better? Well, it depends on the port. I think the regular iPhone is a USB 2.0 standard for charging. You have to go with the Pro phones to get USB three. So the problem with USBC is that all the ports look the same, but the functionality differs greatly. Like not all ports can do charging and video out. Some ports don't do charging, they just do device connection. But they all have the same shape, where in a world where you had different cables yes, you had to have different cables, but the cable shape was representative of what you were going to get in terms of functionality. And now we have all these USB ports, but USB types, the Type C port does not dictate if it can handle Thunderbolts or display port or whatever. Right, yeah, exactly.
[00:05:29] Kris: And I think the USBC, again, it would depend on the type of port or whatever. It's supposed to have higher transfer speeds compared to the Lightning, but at the end of the day, well, on the.
[00:05:42] Erik: Pro, I don't know about the standard.
[00:05:43] Kris: I have no, yeah, yeah, I'm not sure. But at the end of all, if you look at it, Apple was their plan, and I believe this is still their plan, they want to eliminate the.
[00:05:56] Erik: Port altogether and they were hoping that seems like a stupid idea.
[00:06:01] Kris: Yeah, I don't know, they want to just go to wireless charging or what have like maybe with the MagSafe, but they were hoping to get rid of it altogether. That will probably push more for sales for having these Air pods. Right, and then you can't go and connect like an actual headphone, like a wired one, right?
[00:06:26] Erik: Well, yeah, that's the concern. I don't know if you want really good audio. Wireless audio isn't as good as wired. Right. So it seems like that would shoot themselves in the foot from like an enthusiast audio perspective, especially if they released it. The funny thing about the AirPods too, is that the AirPods Pro were also updated to have USBC with irregular AirPods or Lightning. So there's still a bunch of devices that have Lightning.
I would like, if it's okay with you, to air an unpopular opinion. So while USBC is probably a more performant port. I would argue that the Lightning was a better design in one respect.
You can tell me if I'm wrong. So the way the USBC port works, if you look in the port into USBC, there's like a little flap inside and it's actually the port that you plug into the hole of the device goes around this flap that's inside the device. And so if you wiggle a USBC too hard that you've plugged into something, it can actually break the flap inside the device. And so the fragile part is built into the most expensive part, which is the unit where on the Lightning port, it had some exposed pins. In the worst case, if you broke the Lightning port was just like a male to female connector. So then if you broke off the Lightning port, you would just pull out the thing and put a new one in. I think it would be less likely to damage it. I think the way the USBC is designed, where there's kind of like a little tongue inside tongue and groove that it fits into, it's more likely to damage and it's harder to clean out the port as a result. So I find it to be not as good because you're kind of plugging in like a hollow thing versus just like a stick.
[00:08:13] Kris: Yeah, no, I think I would agree with that.
Again, we don't know from a hardware development standpoint, but obviously if you have your own proprietary cable, there's probably some secret sauce that they had developed across all their various devices and stuff, right?
[00:08:35] Erik: Well, yeah, absolutely. And the funny thing is that people were complaining for years because the iPhone used the ipod, which is like this 30 pin mechanical connector, and the 30 pin connector was very rock solid in my opinion. I'd never had one bust.
Why did they go to this Lightning? And I'm like, well, USBC hadn't been invented, it had been this reversible charging standard was on the books forever for USBC and they just never got around to it. So Apple was like, all right, we can't use this ancient port anymore, so we'll invent our own. And then of course, shortly after Lightning, then USBC came out. It's not really their fault.
And though, it's funny though, because for years people were like, we have to get rid of the 30 pin, we need a reversible connector.
And so they did that and then it was like, oh, this is terrible, it's not USBC. It is convenient to have it all be the same and I'm happy about it. None of the things I've pointed out about Lightning would make me want to trade to go back to a proprietary port. I'd rather have something that's decent, which USBC is, then I don't have to carry more than one charging cable or charger style. Everything can be USBC to the USBC, but it's like you're never going to make anybody happy. Everyone happy. Because I've told some people who are, let's say less on the tech enthusiast side about this change, and they're like, this is terrible, I'm going to have to change all my cables. And they're enraged that it's been changed. So there's people who desperately want it to change and people who never want it to change. And I was like, well, what are you going to do? I feel like maybe that's why they were hesitant to change it, because there's more people who don't care that it fits their other devices.
[00:10:17] Kris: Yeah, well, and like you say, there are certain things, like I look at it, for instance, I have a wired headset that I plug in and I use the Lightning port right now. Right. So now basically I would have to go and get a USBC to the 3.5 adapter to make it work. And hopefully it works. I don't know, but that's going to cost me another like $20 probably.
[00:10:43] Erik: Yeah, I mean, the benefit is that at least with a USBC you can get like USBC headphones and then it'll work in everything.
[00:10:50] Kris: That's true too.
[00:10:51] Erik: It has that port.
There is some advantages, I guess, of the new phones. The 15 uses the A 16 chip. So I guess this is the new cycle in terms of hardware. The standard phones this year got the Pro phone processor from last year and the Pro devices get a faster chip, right? Yeah.
The new iPhone 15 also has an A 16 chip that Apple included with the 14 Pro.
I'm just taking a look here to see what the Pro chip, the A 17 then goes to the Pro. So basically, if you get the regular phone like I did, you're technically one generation behind. But I feel that there's so much headroom now on the speeds of these chips in terms of graphics and stuff, that it probably doesn't matter. I chose not to go with a Pro.
Maybe that was a mistake, I don't know. I don't see a huge advantage in terms of the camera and stuff like that.
[00:11:49] Kris: Yeah, well, and I think that's really the big difference is probably just the camera.
[00:11:54] Erik: Right?
Well, okay, so it says here that the new iPhone 15 has the A 16 chip that Apple included with the 14 Pro, while the 15 will come with a 6.1 of one, 6.1 inches for the 15 and 6.7 respectively. Both come with a 48 pixel main camera, all day battery life, quote unquote, and a second generation ultra wideband. It's interesting, so that the pixel count for the cameras is actually matched. The difference is that the Pro comes with a five times telephoto and I.
[00:12:32] Kris: Believe that's only in the Pro max.
[00:12:36] Erik: Is it only the Pro max. Oh yeah, you're right. The Promax has the five times telephoto, which is interesting to me. So the two Pros are not the same, which kind of creates a problem, I suppose. The other upgrade is that you get the action button. So instead of the silent to loud notifying button like the sleep yeah, the silent button. You get this button that can be used for that, but you could program it so shortcuts launches an app or does something like that. I've heard some interesting stories about how people are using the action button. Like if you do a long press, two presses, maybe there's some more functionality on there. What do you think about it? Would the action button sway you?
[00:13:21] Kris: I don't know if it would, but I'm a little bit sometimes I look at it. I think having some of this analog features is a nice thing, right?
Having the ability to actually have a key there. And I even look at like I've updated my watch to the latest OS. I don't know if I like the new one because before I was able to go and pull up the last app that I used and I don't know, I have to maybe look at the configuration or what have you, but these are things that you always have to kind of adjust for. But I haven't updated my phone yet, but I probably will. Got to keep up with the Joneses.
[00:14:05] Erik: Well, I kept mine for years and years, so you don't have to and you can still have a tech podcast. Oh, that is a timely thing. Because they did also release or reveal the Watch Series Nine.
So a faster ultra wideband chip, their S Nine processor probably makes more difference in terms of speed on something like the Watch, in terms of power, efficiency. I feel like the phone is so far ahead of the competition at this point that it's probably in the Watch chips where you're going to see more noticeable speediness and less sluggish opening and stuff like that. They had this interesting feature though, this double tap gesture where you kind of tap your index finger and thumb together twice. So you can do things like snooze the alarm and answer calls and stuff. But I just have this vision of people going around like this.
[00:14:53] Kris: It is kind of handy. So by the way, so I had to go to the mall and I was looking because my phone, I was looking to upgrade, but they have no pros right now. I think the delivery date is sometime in November if you want to get one. But anyways, it was funny. The gentleman that I was dealing with, he's like, what kind of watch do you have? I'm like it's. Apple Watch five. He's like, you don't need to buy the latest watch. Let me show you. And he just happened to be of Indian descent. He goes, US Indian people, we figure out all this stuff. So he showed me, went into the accessibility features and so on, right?
[00:15:30] Erik: For the pinching.
[00:15:31] Kris: For the pinching, yeah. So you can do the pinching if you go and enable it in the accessibility side of things. So it works. Like, I have my Apple Watch five and I can do the double pinch.
[00:15:43] Erik: Yeah, I was going to point that out, but that's a good point. So, yeah, the pinching feature is inaccessibility. The only thing is that I think in the new watches, they're doing some machine learning with the new chip, so it's a little bit less prone to false input. I think that's the only difference. I don't know how much of a difference it really makes, but apparently it uses some of the, I gather some machine learning on the newer chip to take it away from being like, perhaps a more blunt accessibility instrument. But you're right, more or less, you can get the same thing.
[00:16:17] Kris: Yeah, but see, this is again, if you didn't dig into it, maybe I would have bought a new Apple Watch thinking that I need to keep up with the Joneses and I want the double pinch. I don't want to be the only person not pinching.
[00:16:32] Erik: Yeah, that's right. Actually, if people do want to know what they can get away with or want to break down of, is it worth it? Is it not a really good podcast to listen to? Is the hang on a second, I'm going to look this up because I'm going to get it wrong, and then I'm going to have to edit it. So it's better just to do it on the fly.
[00:16:52] Kris: And I can't believe you're promoting another podcast.
[00:16:54] Erik: I know, I'm terrible.
It's called Upgrade. And it's from Relay FM. So Jason Snell used to be the editor in chief of Mac World for a long time, and Mike Hurley, they do a podcast on Apple, and they actually have a really nice breakdown of how to do it in accessibility, how to enable that feature, as well as just some of their feelings on these products. They don't necessarily buy one every year. They probably wait a couple of years before they upgrade. So they're enthusiasts with a practical approach. So that's a good they have to have a lot of tips like that.
[00:17:31] Kris: Yeah, totally. Although I guess the original Apple Watch now is not being serviced in terms of from the software side of things.
[00:17:42] Erik: So what happens if you bought the gold one for $17,000 US?
[00:17:46] Kris: I guess you just have to stick to that OS that you had at that point.
[00:17:56] Erik: Is it that it's obsolete and it's never or does it just not work?
[00:18:01] Kris: I believe it still works.
You won't get a software update for.
[00:18:05] Erik: It, so you won't be able to.
[00:18:07] Kris: Get some of these features. So maybe, like, even that double pinch might not work on that one. Potentially.
[00:18:14] Erik: I'm kind of curious to know. Yeah, I must turn on and continue to function because first generation Apple Watch was in 2015.
So if you bought the gold carrot one, that's really expensive, so it was already considered vintage. I love that they have vintage and then it moves to obsolete. They kind of graciously.
[00:18:36] Kris: Exactly.
[00:18:37] Erik: Put them out to pasture. So watch OS Five software update in 2018 dropped support for first gen watches. It's actually five years ago they dropped OS support.
It's been seven years since Apple sold the product bringing I just looked this up on some website. So bringing the stainless steel and sapphire crystal or solid gold products to the end of their surprisingly short lifespan.
So Apple products considered obsolete is when they stopped distributing them for sale for more than seven years at the date. So there is a hard cut off like a policy. Interesting.
Well, so this is the interesting aspect I hear I'd like to think about. So I mean, also Apple spent quite a bit of time talking about all their carbon neutral green stuff. So I think the Apple watch, at least the aluminum version or one of them probably is going to, is their first carbon neutral product.
I'm not really sure how carbon neutral works. I know that companies will say it's carbon neutral because they buy carbon offsets. I have no idea how that works. I don't know what the policy or the standards are. But it's interesting to me that there's a much discussion paid to recycling and not having waste, which is a win for the environment and the company. I'm not trying to make light of it, but also that then they've at the same time dropped support for something. I mean, eventually it's going to have support dropped and it's going to go into a landfill unless it's recycled.
[00:20:13] Kris: Unless it's recycled. Which I think that's what they're claiming is that they're taking these old devices and then recycling the parts, the aluminum and so on.
[00:20:23] Erik: They would get probably more recycling if they offered people better prices for the trade in.
[00:20:28] Kris: That's a thought.
[00:20:29] Erik: Yeah, probably because my iPhone Eight Plus just got dropped. This is the reason I upgraded it. I don't really need a new phone, but it doesn't get iOS 17. And the problem with that is that I have a Mac that gets Sonoma, I have an iPad that gets it. I try to keep devices for a while, but I like them all running the same roughly the same hardware, even if one is a little slower because they've made some significant updates. Like in Notes, for instance, we had an episode a while back called Zettelcast and where I talked about the Obsidian Notes app, which is a terrific app. I still highly recommend it. I've actually gone back to Apple Notes as the main one, regardless of the interoperability and the open standards that Obsidian uses, because it has the interlinking feature now where you can link between Notes. So it does all the things that I needed the other thing to do. But if I have a device that's not on iOS or iPad OS 17 or Sonoma, then all those links that I put in just show up as like yellow underlines. It's super weird. And so we're getting to the point now where if the software doesn't stay up to date then the functionality doesn't function between devices even though they technically.
[00:21:48] Kris: Still like I don't mean most of my products are Apple. I think that if you look at the we've had this discussion before the overall, if you look at the useful life it tends to be longer. Although with this mean it's seven years. It seems kind of short lifespan.
[00:22:07] Erik: For sure. It does though. This will come up again when we talk about the Pixel event because I think Google's trying to play catch up with regards to this. Apple also did update the Apple Watch Ultra, which is like the hardcore expedition outdoorsman watch. I don't have much to say about that.
[00:22:25] Kris: Yeah, and I believe that it's not worth it. There's minor spec updates so it's pretty much the same as the original one that came up.
[00:22:35] Erik: I think what we could do is that we'll talk about maybe the software. Once we've had more chance to play with it. I thought maybe we could do a deep dive into the latest software updates. Once we figure out the features. There's a better breakdown. Today is kind of focused on hardware.
Should we talk about Microsoft?
Yeah, sure. Microsoft also had an event that came after. So it was like September 21. It was like a week or two later. A week later. So there's an article we have from The Verge. Again, another really good update. Microsoft Surface. Event.
Can't speak today. The 6th biggest announcements.
It was not a Microsoft Surface hardware event.
Apparently it was more of a combination event. Probably because if they had just had a Surface event they wouldn't have enough to show to qualify to really have an event. So it was kind of a grab bag in terms of hardware.
The Surface is an interesting product line. It sometimes gets regularly updated and then sometimes it languishes for a long time. So it's kind of a bizarre update cycle. They have a new Surface laptop. Studio two. So this is a laptop, and I think you and I have talked about this before, where it's a traditional clamshell, but the display is on a traditional laptop hinge, and then it can kind of break away from that hinge and tilt, and it can kind of turn the whole laptop into a big tablet, like a big writing surface.
It's a very interesting product.
Ironically, as per what is typical with Microsoft, they updated these products with 13th generation intel processors and then intel immediately talked about how they're going to the 14th gen. This happens every single time Microsoft updates the Surface. So it's like out of date as soon as they update it though my understanding is that the 13th gen processor that's in the Surface Studio Two has some sort of features in it. I don't know if it's machine learning or a neural network or something that's actually unique to that laptop and only that computer. So it has some unit on it that you would only get in a desktop processor. But in the Surface, they've managed to convince intel to put it in a mobile chip and that's the only laptop that will launch with it. Probably because it's like a graphic artist device. It comes with Nvidia's RTX, 40 50 so a very decent or 40 60, so very good graphics cards. Given the package of the device, 64 gigs of Ram, they're very expensive. I think they start at about 2000 US.
I don't know what you think about the Surface Studio laptop. I have a hard time deciding if this is a product that needs to.
[00:25:35] Kris: Mean they must if there's people who actually want this, the ability, I mean, I look at if you compare it to Apple, what would you have to do? You basically would have to buy a keyboard separately to be able to take their iPad Pros and be able to use it in the same kind of fashion. So it is kind of nice to have something that works and not have to pay. Although, I don't know, I mean, I guess price wise it's probably similar and.
[00:26:03] Erik: Runs a full operating system like Windows.
[00:26:05] Kris: Yeah, exactly.
[00:26:08] Erik: There is an advantage.
[00:26:09] Kris: Yeah, for sure.
Sorry, go ahead.
[00:26:17] Erik: No, I was going to ask what was the other thing that got updated?
[00:26:20] Kris: Well, I don't know in terms of updates, I'm not as familiar with the Windows side, but like you say, I think beyond just the hardware side, it really was much to do with this whole AI, the Copilot side of things as well.
[00:26:35] Erik: Right.
[00:26:36] Kris: And integrating it with the various devices.
[00:26:39] Erik: Yeah, because they only did that studio and the Surface laptop go three. So that's kind of their entry level MacBook Air competitor.
Which is fine. It's fine. I honestly don't know enough about it. I really don't have a lot to say about it.
[00:26:55] Kris: It.
[00:27:00] Erik: Has a strange processor, kind of a low end intel, not a particularly compelling device for the price.
But it was really about Windows. They talked about Windows Copilot. So what is Windows Copilot again? Is that the same as Office's Copilot or is this different? Are they all copilot?
[00:27:22] Kris: I guess we'll find out soon. But yeah, apparently they're going to go and integrate Chat GPT into all of its apps. So right across all the Microsoft apps. So Windows Edge, Excel, PowerPoint and so on. And so mean, the way that Satya Nadella is talking about this, they're basically creating a new product category.
It's a new category of computing which he believes is going to take it to in terms of it might be as significant as Windows when it was first launched.
We don't know. I mean, we'll see it's just like the PCs were in the web in the 90s, mobile in 2000s, cloud in two thousand and ten s. And now you're going to be able to boot up an operating system, be able to access applications, use a browser, navigate websites and you can use Copilot for all of these activities right across all those applications.
[00:28:31] Erik: Yeah, so I mean, the Copilot features I think differ between using it on the web with Bing or if you're in Office, because of course the Office Microsoft 365 which was what? Office 365, it was the previous branding. I think Office was a better brand personally.
That is an expensive add on. So this is something that's so this Windows Copilot will be added to Windows. So Microsoft is merging Copilot, the company's AI powered assistant. So that's what they've called their Assistant now, which is a good brand. I mean, they've done a really good job with that. That's pretty much exactly how it's supposed to operate. And so the name is Apt, it's better than all the other names actually. Copilot is terrific to allow for some unified experience. The tool will be seamlessly available across Microsoft apps, like you said, Windows Eleven. But I suspect that what Copilot can do is a little bit different. So in base Windows it's a little bit different than what's in Office.
Yeah, because in Office it's $30 per user, US per month to use Copilot built in, I'm sorry, I'm sneezing in the background.
And so this is some sort of kind of basic Copilot, I would assume that would help with finding like it comes out in November so I'm trying to see if there's an example. But I mean, you can do some of the drafting stuff like with Bing AI, which is Chat GPT.
[00:30:07] Kris: I think.
[00:30:08] Erik: Probably finding some of the settings. I think there's also some things that are built into File Explorer. In fact, I'll give you this link, Kris, my apologies, I didn't put this in our link here, but Paul Thorat, our favorite Windows journalist, talked about the updates that were coming to Windows Eleven.
And So, including Windows Backup Copilot.
So it basically provides, assistant provides access to Bing chat.
At this time, Copilot is only available in North America and parts of Asia and South America and that's going to expand over time. And then also the AI stuff moves to File Explorer and the Start menu. So users signed in with their Azure Ad account will see AI powered recommendations. In File Explorer.
There's a new Volume Mixer. These are other updates to Windows Eleven. There's a new voice access expansion.
A few things that are coming to Windows which are impressive.
It's interesting to me that there's some AI tools that are coming to Paint. So I think Microsoft Paint is actually getting layers and a snipping tool, which is pretty cool actually.
So there's a lot to talk about in the update. But yeah, they're really going all in on this Copilot, this AI stuff. Yeah.
[00:31:41] Kris: And the one thing to note as well, like with that, Microsoft Three Six five. So right now that Copilot feature is going to be in the enterprise license. And so yeah, that cost not personal. Not personal. So that's $30 per user above their base subscription. So it's not included. But then with that enterprise version, what's going to happen is that the users also get data protection. So meaning that none of their data that they're using will get fed back into the language model. And so that's the bing chat enterprise version of what they're going to be putting together. So the GPT Four model, the language model will not be using all of our information. And that's kind of what a lot of companies were kind of concerned about, is that all of a sudden our proprietary information is going to help build this language model. And who knows, they might go in, there could be some data privacy issues or what have you. But overall, like Nadella, he thinks that we'll see, I guess it's going to be released soon. Now in terms of out for people in the enterprise side of things, but it'll fundamentally transform our relationship with technology and Nadella says it'll usher in a new era of personal computing. I mean, it's a big promise and we'll see. But they're like all in on this.
[00:33:13] Erik: It's hard to agree that they're think I think with Microsoft, as you pointed out in the really they're really dominant for a long time, but they really fumbled on Mean Steve Ballmer, who I don't think was a bad CEO actually, I think just really underestimated how powerful the iPhone was going to be. I mean, it just totally took them by surprise. And I mean that basically made Apple the trillion dollar company it is today. Before the iPhone, Apple was still profitable niche company. They really didn't see that coming and they've never ever been able to really successfully pivot to mobile. And they had bought Nokia and had Windows. Well, I thought Windows Mobile was no, Windows Phone Seven. And Windows Phone Eight were terrific. They were really nice, but they just could never get it to work. They could never really make it happen. It was just like that. It's like a two party system in politics, right? It's hard to be the third party and I think it's hard to be the third platform that then everybody has to develop their app for another platform, right? So they missed that and I think that was painful for them. So what they've done is that they've seen AI and rather than Waffle, they've just thrown tons of money at it because Apple sorry, Microsoft's Azure business has been so successful. Their cloud business, I mean, they're number two now to Amazon and I think probably a distant two, but like catching up that they have so much cash throwing money at Xbox for acquisitions and throwing money for content and throwing billions of dollars at OpenAI is really nothing for them in terms of the size of their company. So now they own this know to be perfectly honest I don't know how it'll turn out in the end, but it seems like they have the best integration and they've branded it well copilot.
So they've kind of done to Google what Apple did to them in Mobile but in AI. Yeah.
[00:35:16] Kris: And I mean time will tell whether because apparently the new language model that Google is developing is going to be like four times more powerful than Chat GPT but we'll see how the AI wars will end up. But overall keep in mind and I think this is where people sometimes maybe they know Satya Nadella, he was the head of Azure.
That's what got him into this position. So he was all about the cloud computing, his domain expertise, his knowledge in that area. Now seeing from a strategy standpoint to be able to go and take all this AI large language model kind of stance and it's not just Office 365 they're going right across all of their Azure and all the apps and so it's a very dominant kind of cohesive strategy that they're implementing. I mean, I've never seen a company move as fast as they have, especially a large one. And to be able to introduce not only give $10 billion to OpenAI to control 49% of the Chat GPT but then roll it out and integrate it into Bing. I mean Bing is still a distant like apparently according to these because Satya Nadella had to go and recently testify as part of a antitrust case that's taking.
[00:36:54] Erik: The what is the department which American body is taking Google to court it's not the FTC, is it?
[00:37:10] Kris: Let's go look this up here.
[00:37:12] Erik: I always forget I'm terrible at this. I'm sorry if we have an American listeners I don't understand your institutions.
I don't have them memorized.
I think you can find this answer better but while you're looking for that, I'll kind of give a preamble. So Google's fighting basically the antitrust case that's being brought to them and so Microsoft this is reported by again Paul Throttle. So Microsoft CEO Satya Adela appeared on the stand today and this was written on October 2 as witnesses for the prosecution in the US versus Google antitrust trial. As expected, he tried to hurt Google's defense that Apple chose Google Search as its default search engine because it was the best choice. So for many years Apple has put Google as the default search engine in Safari on the iPhone and the iPad. And they get paid a ton of money like billions of dollars every year from Google to be the default. And so he argued that that is a problem for them. He unexpectedly revealed that he overestimated the impact of OpenAI's Chat GPT based AI capabilities would have on Bing. Capabilities that he had since reorganized the entire company around. And I think what he means there is that Bing really hasn't seen any increase in traffic as a result of being integrated with Chat GPT. Yeah, I mean, Chat GPT is being useful, but Bing itself is not seeing an advantage where it's catching up to Google in terms of search market share. And part of that, his argument is that the default is very yeah, yeah, totally.
[00:38:54] Kris: So it's the Department of justice that's running this. Yeah, it is complicated down.
[00:39:01] Erik: Yeah. So the Department of justice is arguing that Google abuses its search dominance.
And Nadala said by engaging in multi billion dollar deals with Apple and other companies to ensure that its search engine is the default, it's just no way to compete.
Now, I would also argue the opposite. I mean, Apple made this case because other people on Apple had to testify and their argument was that while they weren't going to make anything that default anyways other than Google because it's the best product as far as search goes.
And I think they're right. I mean, there are some other good searches out there and I've tried them, I've tried switching to Bing, so I can have AI built in. I've tried DuckDuckGo as a manual default search and I can't they're just not as good. And Google has so much time and effort doing this that doesn't surprise me that it's difficult for a company like Microsoft to catch up when that's all really Google does is web services.
[00:40:06] Kris: No, totally. And I mean, even as part of that testimony, so Nadella, to support the government's argument. So Bing has a very tiny market share at about 3%. So it's Google's closest competitor at 3%. And so Google Search truly is a better product because its dominance in search is basically self reinforcing. The more searches go through the search engine, there's more data that the search engine has, the better it becomes at guessing what searchers are looking for and what the results will interest them the most. So it's, as he describes, a vicious cycle. But at the same time, one thing that he did also say, and I don't think very many people would have expected, like even look at Microsoft, it goes and pre installs Internet Explorer and afterwards it was Edge.
But the dominant web browser is also it's Google Chrome. And so he actually admitted that Google did a good job of innovating in the browser side of things as well.
[00:41:21] Erik: Yeah, and they did. And Google Chrome, well, now is kind of a security nightmare. For many years, it was kind of a lean and mean process product. And you and I use different browsers because we like the differentiation. I mean, I use Firefox, you use Firefox, I use Brave, which is chromium based, but is not Google Chrome because it doesn't have the tracking stuff and doesn't use as much memory. I actually went back to Safari with macOS sonoma because it has the switch between your different profiles, which is really nice.
But that being said, yeah, I mean, Chrome is a good browser and that's dominant, right? I mean, Firefox is down into the single digits, I think, at this point.
[00:42:00] Kris: Yeah, I basically use Firefox as my default browser and then I'll use Safari. I've been using Edge of late just because that was the only way to go and use Bing. But apparently some of my students have told me you can use Bing AI in Chrome.
[00:42:18] Erik: Yeah, you can.
And Edge is a chrome based product.
[00:42:23] Kris: Oh, okay.
[00:42:24] Erik: There you mean this is the problem is not so much that Chrome is dominant, but also the chromium base is what all their competitors are based on. So there's kind of a browser hegemony. So the rendering engine that it uses is the same across all those different browsers. Even though they're different brands. Firefox still uses its own rendering engine. It's still its own thing. Apple uses WebKit, which is an open standard. And Chrome used to be based on WebKit, but is no longer.
Google went with their own I think it's Go. Or they went with some of their own framework or something like that. Though it's interesting that you mentioned, though, that Satya Nadel is revolving the whole company around AI. That also has some consequences because Microsoft had this event that was AI and Surface, but the person who usually introduces Surface was actually not there. And so Panos Panay, who was the well, I think he started at Microsoft in the hardware division on like keyboard and mouse design and then eventually took over Surface and then eventually was in charge of Surface and Windows, which seems like kind of a humongous jump if you ask me. But that being said, he's no longer at Microsoft, probably because of that shift to AI focus. I mean, I don't think the Windows team well, I guess Windows is getting more attention now because it's incorporating you know, I think the Windows team and Surface was kind of on the back burner for Microsoft because of Azure and all this stuff. So imagine working for a company where your product is lower on the list in terms of budget and stuff like.
[00:44:10] Kris: Although I think it's quite possible. You mentioned Apple becoming the most valuable company. I think if their bets pay off if Nadella's bets on AI pay off, it might surpass Apple.
[00:44:26] Erik: It could. Apple doesn't have much more to do in terms of growth. I don't think Vision Pro is going to get it there. Yeah, their services division make a lot of money.
The issue would be profitability. Not so much revenue, but how much profit they make. And I think that's very difficult to compete on.
[00:44:46] Kirs: Although I guess Apple does have the margins are probably higher generally.
[00:44:51] Erik: That's what I mean. I mean, most companies don't make 20, 30% margins. Apple does. So Microsoft is in a very different business.
But they could supplant them, though. Again, I would be curious to know what do they make in revenue from AI or profit versus the cost? Because the cost of running these AIS and these large language models in their cloud is prohibitively expensive, as you and I have discussed in previous episodes. So again, they can be bigger in terms of market capitalization, but does that mean they're as profitable?
Tesla has recently been a larger market cap, probably a bit inflated compared to the other car makers, but they also have a much higher profit margin. I mean, I think Toyota was like the market leader with like, I don't know, 8%, 6% profit.
And then Tesla is like 10, 15, 20, something like that, probably because of automation. So there's different ways to measure, I suppose, the size or the value.
[00:45:56] Kris: Yeah, that's true, very true.
[00:45:58] Erik: So Panos is going to go to Amazon, though, and quite frankly, he was always kind of a strange character in my opinion. So I don't think that this is going to do anything but probably help the Surface brand at this point. He was a bit of a bizarre presenter if you ask me.
Another tech pundits. I don't consider myself a tech pundit. I guess maybe we are. They also agree, but he's going to go to Amazon, which is interesting because you mentioned to me today that Amazon seems a little bit like you don't.
[00:46:28] Kris: Hear much about them, although we have talked about this.
They're kind of just keeping things very close. But they have been rolling out these AI features with their Amazon web services and their cloud infrastructure and so they're kind of providing that type of these large language model kind of functionalities for their clients that are using their cloud services. And so maybe they just don't care to bring too much attention. I mean, certainly they had a big lift, I think, during the Pandemic, because when you can't go anywhere and you're locked in your home, getting your stuff delivered is probably going to help quite a bit.
[00:47:17] Erik: For their devices division, what does that include? So kindle.
And then the kindle fire tablets, the echo.
[00:47:24] Kris: Echo. Alexa.
[00:47:26] Erik: So that's the same thing. And then the nest. Is that it or is there others? I think that's pretty much it.
[00:47:32] Kris: Well, no, the nest is Google's, but they have their Ring.
[00:47:35] Erik: Oh right, ring, sorry, my mistake. So they bought ring. Google bought I mean, Kindle is like a rock solid I don't use a Kindle, I use the Kobo platform because, well, public libraries in Canada don't support like so they have a new Kindle. Those are devices though it seems like a bit of a step back to go from a position where you have not only Surface hardware, so you have the in house hardware that Microsoft is making and Windows to go. To know a kindle designer well, I.
[00:48:14] Kris: Mean, who knows what Amazon has up its they've tried they've tried all sorts of things like you talk about with the know, having the TV type of.
[00:48:24] Erik: Devices and IPS, which is like a mobile advertisement.
[00:48:30] Kris: I mean they've tried going and even looked into going and developing their own phone and stuff but yeah I don't know I mean when you showed me the articles with mean I can't believe people were kind know comparing him to Jonathan Ivey from Apple as a designer.
[00:48:49] Erik: It's a ridiculous yeah that's a terrible I mean I'm thinking about so I'm just trying to get in the head as somebody who's at a corporate level and like okay I got to leave. Right so I get that Windows has been on the back burner but every area of and I've heard this on other podcasts and other pundits say it which I think is a good point. I mean can you think of another time in recent history where every division I mean I think the only division that's not launching a copilot is Xbox and it wouldn't surprise me if that's not far behind at this point. I mean every division is like you are going to integrate AI come up with something even if it's like searching settings and it's in Windows and it's some super rinky dink thing to start everything has to have copilot. Obviously, the features between products are different, but the branding is the same. And so this is the time to be on the Windows team to leverage AI because it's something that hasn't garnered a lot of attention. So, to me, though, other than the Kindle, I would think that the Echo would be in major trouble because it doesn't seem to me like a voice assistant, where you have to memorize all these phrases and all these skills and you have to know all the trigger words. I mean that's why most people use them as a timer and a couple of other things it's like 90% of the use cases because you have to memorize these prompts where it's just better to interact with a text model.
[00:50:20] Kris: Yeah, but see, this is where if you look at it like the recent announcements, even by OpenAI where they've integrated voice right now, I think truly, this was predicted even back in about 2019. Like this conversational computing this was the emergence of AI. But now given these large language models know, having that ability I could only imagine I mean we'll at like apple hasn't said much but I bet you Apple is probably working on something in the background they've had siri for a long well they would have a bunch.
[00:51:00] Erik: Of data to do a large language model as just I guess for me. Is voice the best way to do that? When you and I talk about OpenAI and you're much better at using Chat GPT. I'm trying to catch up to you is my goal. But you're teaching me how to prompt it better. And I'm learning a like that takes a lot of thinking, right? So for me to say those prompts on the fly I'm not saying it wouldn't be useful to use the LLM for voice, but it would be a lot harder to articulate spoken words on the fly where when you're editing a prompt and writing it, you can kind of edit and you kind of perfect it, and then you get it to bring something back. Right. It just seems like there's limits to what people can think of on the fly to prompt it accurately.
[00:51:44] Kris: Yeah, but that being said, it's an interesting kind of where we're at paradigm wise, right? Imagine the next generation. They might not even be typing as much.
They may literally just be talking. Kind of like when you look at all these science fiction shows where you're talking to a computer, like whether it's Star Trek talking to the computer or what have you, or these robots and stuff, maybe we're finally getting to that level. I don't know.
[00:52:17] Erik: The knowledge navigator. Right. Remember the Apple the Knowledge Navigator commercial where he's asking at.
[00:52:24] Kris: Just I don't know. I mean, it's funny because most of the times you know what it is, Erik?
[00:52:28] Erik: I was thinking about this the other.
[00:52:30] Kris: Day because I think it might have been you texting me and I was having lunch or something. And normally I would just type I would just type on text and stuff, right? But at that point, my hands were kind of off, so I pressed with my knuckle, the mic and then I had to go and generate the text and then send it off. And it's just awkward right now. It's just awkward to go and talk about whatever you're going to be saying. And maybe there's other people around, but who knows? It was probably also very awkward back in the day when we were using Bluetooth. And what was the issue? The issue was that you look like a crazy person just talking to yourself.
[00:53:14] Erik: But now that hasn't changed. I still feel like that personally.
[00:53:17] Kris: But that's where I think honestly, Erik, that's where with Apple having those white strings hanging from your ear, then people knew it was acceptable by society that you knew that the person was talking to somebody. Now we've kind of removed that wire altogether and you kind of have to look for those earbuds or something. But I think it's just more of like just human behavior and what's acceptable in society. But we may get to that point. I mean, certainly some things that I've done sometimes is that when I'm walking my dogs, I'll go and especially my hands are kind of tied up or if it's really cold, recording something right to my phone and using the voice memo. But now imagine you don't even have to do the voice memo. It can just literally transcribe everything, right? And so I think we're getting to that point. It's maybe that tipping point where we might transition over from typing to speaking.
[00:54:20] Erik: I totally agree. I don't think that as people get more comfortable with dictation, there are some people who I mean, if you watch someone who is blind, for instance, or has a disability and can't type how they dictate is very different than somebody who's not used to it. So I totally can see the LLMs coming to like a voice assistant or any computer and it being more interactive and I think it'll become more the norm. And I don't think that's a bad thing. I'd love to be able to say, hey, pull this into this, rather than me having to type it out or something. Right. But for the long form writing tasks, I do not believe, or if you're trying to prompt an AI to do something like, really example let me give you an example of what to get. I was playing around with Leonardo, which is an AI image generator. I've been playing with a few of them, right? And so I'm creating this persona for this project I'm working on. So it says, generate an image of a female high school student in senior year who wants to attend an Ivy League college.
She should look intelligent and driven. She is dedicated to her studies. She has high aspirations and create the image so it's realistic and detailed and produce it in high definition kind of cinematic style. That would be very difficult for me to articulate on the fly. Like, I had to really work that phrase and that was the phrase that generated the better results. The other ones weren't as successful. Right. So my point is, isn't that I agree with you and I just think that there's maybe a limit to what people can do to the human mind, to what they can dictate versus what they can write in long form.
[00:56:11] Kris: Yeah, absolutely. And again, I think it's a different because we're not used to it. I felt even weird dictating that one time when I was trying to I just had some ideas that came to mind or what have you, and certainly it's not going to be perfect. Although I think as time goes on, maybe we're getting better as speakers and maybe you might be able to articulate it better. But yeah, for the general public, probably not. But it is going to be like a skill. I mean, that's why I say this whole prompting thing we've talked about this before, it's almost like a fad right now. And that's why I describe it as like coding meets philosophy. Because you got to go and find what is the way that you go and make it very specific and concrete and give those kind of restrictions and limits so that it can actually produce the result that you need. But a lot of that is just experimentation and coming up with ideas of how you might go and do it because, again, how these large language models work is it's doing pattern recognition. And just because it's taking billions of documents and finding the most common pattern doesn't make it good, right?
[00:57:27] Erik: No, I 100% agree.
Yeah, I'm thinking about your point. I would love to see those voice assistants adopt even the open AI model, or the Llama, or whatever Facebook says. I mean, there's lots of different large language models.
Wouldn't Siri be way better conversationally, even if you were only prompting it simple things that you could think off of the top of your head than what it currently totally, totally mean right now. It basically says, I don't know what you're talking about. I tried to search it and it searches it in like Apple's own search. It used to use Bing search for Siri. I think Apple has their own web crawler at this point, but it's like they're terrible searches. I mean, just awful.
[00:58:12] Kris: Yeah, exactly. But I think that's what you mean.
[00:58:16] Erik: By she knows I'm talking about her.
[00:58:20] Kris: Siri responded, oh, there you even isn't it funny? Now they've even removed the hey, Siri part, right? Oh, damn, it's going to start up on mine as well.
[00:58:33] Erik: That's right.
But speaking of AI and who's ahead and who's behind, this is probably a good transition to the Pixel event.
And Gadget did a terrific summary of the Pixel event. So the Pixel event is like October 5. So we had Apples, then we had Microsoft, then we had the Pixel. And so this is the Pixel Eight and Pixel Eight Pro and barred AI and everything else that they announced. So the Pixel Eight and the Pixel Eight Pro are their kind of flagship phone competitors. I think the Pixel phones are great. It's a very tempting if I didn't need messages to contact everybody that I know or use Signal, then I would strongly consider the Pixel.
They're more or less settled into the design now. It looks very similar to the seven, and the six at this point says the regular Pixel Eight is slightly smaller. So they've made the normal sized one smaller and then kept the larger one. So there's a bit of more of a gap between the size. I always found the Pixel Seven to be a bit unwieldy, so perhaps that's the right move for them.
They have new finishes. They get this new Tensor G three processor and what they're promising. And by the way, you were talking about Apple support earlier, they're promising now seven years of Android and security updates versus the three that they had before. I think it was three years of Android updates and then five of security, and now they're saying seven of both.
So I guess this is their way to compete in terms of the longevity. Or maybe there's a green aspect too. There's a temperature sensor built in, which I think is funny. So I guess you can point the camera at things and it'll tell you the temperature or some sort of approximation. I don't know how accurate that is. I would like to have it so I could test it against my thermapen. I think that would be funny.
But they seem like compelling devices.
It looks like Bard has some integration. So I think Google's now going to fuse its assistant. So, to your point about these Siri and all the other ones, so Google Assistant is now being fused with Bard AI. So they had a tech demo and Google showed the assistant kind of pulling information from like a live party invite in Gmail. So it was able to reach into your Gmail, you could ask it, when is this the invite? When it's happening? And it would give it back. So the assistant's already tied into all the apps. So then they're just going to introduce Bard, which is the large language model, into that. So now it has the OS hook. But of course it can give better responses because it's not stuck to the previous generation. They say, ask where the party is, an assistant with Bard can tell you the location and tap into Google Maps for directions. So it kind of does everything all in one. Now, before, they had Bard for the large language model, like Chat GBT, and now Assistant will be able to pull that in. So it'll be kind of a one stop shop. So this is kind of your point. Now, Apple is the most behind because Siri is the only thing that doesn't use a large language model or hasn't rolled one.
[01:02:01] Kris: Yeah, yeah, exactly. Although we don't know. I mean, we don't know what Apple's working on or not, right. They just haven't been very forthcoming. But that's their kind of mo. Anyways. Actually, one thing we forgot to mention was you were talking about the finishes.
We forgot to mention that Apple had to use Titanium in the Pros.
[01:02:24] Erik: And they have a different glass finish on mine, too. Like, I have the regular, but it's almost like a matte glass, like the color is in the glass. Yeah. And then the Pros, yeah, they have Titanium on the Apple. What is it? The iPhone pro and promax. Is that what they're called?
[01:02:39] Kris: Exactly. So you're actually using a precious metal to justify the prices, I suppose.
[01:02:46] Erik: Yeah. But to me, it's funny though, I saw some complaints online. I mean, Titanium is often it's a very unique finish. It's a notorious fingerprint magnet. I mean, that was one of the complaints of the original Surface. I don't know if you remember this. So when the Surface first came out, like the Surface Pro, that was a time when the iPad was in full swing. I mean, the iPad is still very popular and very profitable, but it's not like for the falling. Right. So that was the tablet to have. And so Apple had so much bought up of the world's aluminum and. Manufacturing supply. So the original Surface Pro, as I understand it, was magnesium. Okay. Because they just didn't have the supply chain clout to get it made. So then they were like I remember they were advertising the Surface Pro as magnesium, and I don't know if they still use magnesium, but it was interesting that they had to do that as a marketing gimmick because they weren't able to get the manufacturing.
[01:03:51] Kris: Yeah, I guess they're kind of just saying, it's a precious metal, it's lighter, it's more durable, blah, blah, blah. I mean, whatever it takes to get more money out of us, I suppose.
[01:04:07] Erik: Well, they also had some overheating issues, too, didn't they?
[01:04:09] Kirs: Yeah, but they're saying that's a software issue, and so apparently with the next upgrade, you'll be able to go and fix that overheating issue.
Apparently. That's what I read, anyways.
[01:04:26] Erik: Well, I haven't had any problems yet, but I will keep you.
Have we had one more thing about Facebook, which you brought to my attention. Did you want to cover that?
[01:04:34] Kris: Yeah. So basically, they've partnered up with Ray Ban. And so it's kind of like the.
[01:04:42] Erik: Google what was it called?
[01:04:47] Kris: The Google kind of you mean the Metaquest?
Well, no, remember how Google had their own kind of thing for vision? I forget what it's called now.
[01:05:01] Erik: You mean the OS or the hardware?
[01:05:04] Kris: Yeah, the hardware for putting over your like to have that augmented reality.
[01:05:11] Erik: Well, meta had oculus. They bought yeah, and then they turned it, and it became Meta. So I don't think Oculus used to be Oculus. Quest was their VR headset, and then it was the one and two, and then when they came out with the third generation, it was the Meta Quest.
[01:05:26] Kris: Oh, it was Google Glass. Google Glass.
[01:05:28] Erik: Oh, Google Glass. Which I got to use. Oh, did you use it? I did, I used it. We had a bunch of them in my department when I worked at the University of Alberta. And so I was signed a form saying I wouldn't wreck it, and then took it all over Edmonton's, downtown, and I got the weirdest looks.
[01:05:43] Kris: Yeah. Well, I mean, it's interesting. So they're basically going and taking these Ray Ban stories, and so it's going to be integrated within their various social, know, Instagram. Facebook, I believe, also. WhatsApp and so it's going to allow you to go and take video of what you're seeing and include it as part of a post or what have you, and they just look like regular it.
[01:06:12] Erik: So does it integrate into Facebook and Threads and Instagram? It must integrate into instagram.
[01:06:18] Kris: That's from my understanding. Yeah. So basically it'll allow you to go and give, like, real time updates and shoot video of what you're seeing and be able to go and post that. So you could do, like, live stream. You have the Insta stories, so you could do, like, live stream, I would imagine you could probably just create a post. I mean, it's cool, but this is where, I don't know, I look at just like the privacy applications or considerations.
This is what we all wanted. We wanted something that doesn't look weird and looks like normal glasses.
[01:06:54] Erik: But now I didn't want any of these.
[01:06:56] Kris: I want to be very clear, I.
[01:06:58] Erik: Never wanted a camera in glasses for anybody. I just want to point that out.
[01:07:02] Kris: Yeah, but I don't know. I mean this is just like humanity, I don't know, whatever reason we wanted to strive towards this. And now that it's mean, I wonder if it's the right move. Especially Zuckerberg, of all people, who likes to move fast and break things.
[01:07:20] Erik: But it seems to me so, I mean, this article that we had about it from Gizmodo, so they report I mean, this is kind of a bunch of reporting in here, but I'll quote, it says, Meta documents cited in a recent Wall Street Journal story show that just 10% of customers who purchased Ray Band stories still actively use them. The company has reportedly sold 300,000 pairs, which is not very many of the shades as of this February, but only recorded 27,000 monthly active users. Oh, this was published in August. So this is an older article. So we're kind of playing catch up here.
So I'm just wondering it's October, this was written in August. What do you think the active users are for this? At this point?
[01:08:13] Kris: That's surprising. If that's all the case, I wonder.
[01:08:16] Erik: What the issue is there.
[01:08:19] Kris: Well, I don't know.
[01:08:20] Erik: I mean, it could be software, it could be sluggishness. Maybe the battery heats up and it warms up your face. I mean, it could be a bunch of things.
[01:08:27] Kris: Maybe it's also the fact that it's only a five megapixel lens that's in.
[01:08:33] Erik: Well, that's what I'm thinking. It wouldn't take very compelling. It would be more kind of like a LifeLogger.
Yeah, I mean interesting. I mean, the advantage to having Apple's Vision Pro or the Metaquest is that clearly you are involved in some sort of you know, it's not hidden, so it'll be interesting to see.
[01:08:57] Kris: Yeah, exactly.
[01:08:58] Erik: I heard Tim Cook said he watched the entire season of Ted Lasso Three on the Vision Pro, which sounds brutal, to be perfectly honest.
[01:09:08] Kris: People are complaining that it is heavy right. To go and put on your head and stuff. Although I guess those episodes are probably pretty short. What is it, probably like half an hour?
[01:09:19] Erik: I have no idea. Yeah, I thought more like 45 minutes.
[01:09:23] Kris: Either way, I'd be curious to see.
[01:09:25] Erik: What the meta quest is. I don't know if there's a review at this point.
I don't know. But my understanding is that I haven't used the Quest Two. That was a really good device. And that's a standalone. Yeah, Tom's Guide has a hands on review.
Surprisingly good how it is, given the price point, I mean, I don't know what it costs us. 499 to start.
Right there's so much software for the Quest platform. The Oculus is what it is, right? It's Oculus. That was a good investment for them. I don't know how Apple's going to be able to compete. I mean, I suppose that they can bring the apps and all this stuff from their other platforms because it's the same kind of silicon design as the phone and the tablet and the Mac. But I still wonder. The Metaquest is a very compelling product.
[01:10:16] Kris: Although I saw one thing that it was interesting, and I mentioned this to you before we started, but it came across somebody was like, comparing the Apple Vision Pro with this Metaquest three. And so the unit for Metaquest is like $500. There's a charging dock that's 130. Then you would need a PC with a 40.
[01:10:36] Erik: It should be a standalone device, though.
[01:10:39] Kris: I don't know. This is just some individual put this together. And so apparently you needed access to a PC, which I don't know. And then they said it was like that type of PC would be 21, 49. You would need a router, you need these Steam cards.
[01:10:57] Erik: So the way it works with the Metaquest is that so let's say that you want to play a high end VR game.
Yes. Then the Metaquest can be plugged in and tethered to a gaming PC and it can be used as the headset for the gaming PC. But the Metaquest also is a standalone device that does not require, as I understand it, if it's the same as the two. So it kind of can function as a viewpoint to a gaming PC, but it also is a standalone product. It's probably not anywhere near as powerful as Apple's Vision Pro, given what they've done with silicon, with their silicon development. But for the price point, it's a very compelling if somebody wanted to know like, hey, I'm willing to spend a few hundred bucks on a VR headset, I would say that this is probably their best option.
[01:11:48] Kris: Yeah. And I guess their comparison maybe that's where you're maybe looking at that specific use case of going in full on VR, high def or what have you. Apparently the Vision Pro from Apple doesn't need a computer, whereas this you would need to connect it to a computer, right?
[01:12:08] Erik: Yeah. I mean, I do wonder about having a headset with a big processor that's heating up your head. I wonder what that'll do to people. But that being said, I'll leave that for another time. I've never spent enough time in VR to really be concerned about it, but that's more or less what we had today. Is there anything else that we wanted to add in terms of articles?
[01:12:27] Kris: I don't think so. We've covered off the big tech and all their hardware side of things, and then we'll see, I guess next time we'll follow it up with something else.
Was there a tip or anything? Or is that something separate?
[01:12:42] Erik: I think for time we can leave tips for another time, but just for our listeners. How can they contact you or figure out what you're up to?
[01:12:51] Kris: Yeah, so you can visit my website. It's Kris Hans - krishans.ca. And there you have all my social media.
Slowly, kind of. I've made some tweachks to it a couple of months ago, or maybe a month ago, so maybe I'll add to it. I think you've been making way more changes from what I can see.
[01:13:16] Erik: While you were first, you inspired me. So I have my updated my CV and all the work I've done. I hadn't updated it, publications, stuff like that. But you can contact me and find out more about me at erikchristiansen.net, which will be linked in the podcast show notes as always.
[01:13:33] Kris: All right, awesome
[01:13:35] Erik: Awesome. Well, thanks very much, Kris. Until next time. Yeah, for sure. Take care.
[01:13:39] Kris: Yeah, take care.