Essential Apple Podcast 178: The Essential British Mac with Will Green

This week whilst the US is wracked with unrest over the death of George Floyd, and institutional racism, we have a bit of a different sort of show to the usual to hopefully cheer us up. Nick, Jim and I are joined by veteran British podcaster Will Green of the British Mac Podcast and just let the conversation wander where it will – taking in Amazon during lockdown, Will’s new Macs, DDNS, a fez, pipe smoking and much more. We hope you enjoy the change of pace. No real notes or chapters this week just a conversation with Will.

GIVEAWAYS & OFFERS

  • Glenn Fleishman’s Working From Home book is completely FREE and can be downloaded here and now he has also released Take Control of Zoom too.
  • Steve at Geeks Corner will be having more giveaways in the near future. Keep an eye on the site or follow him on Twitter @GeekCorner_uk
  • Serif have expanded their sale to everything in the Affinity store until June 20th

Why not come and join the Slack community? You can now just click on this Slackroom Link to sign up and join in the chatter!

Slacker @MacJim has a family friendly Flickr group for listeners to share photos because the Darkroom channel in the Slack has become so popular – if you’re interested head over to to the Essential Apple Flickr and request an invitation.

Continue reading → Essential Apple Podcast 178: The Essential British Mac with Will Green

Apple Fan Tries Out Amazon Echo Dot For The First Time

As an Apple fan of course I’ve coveted the Apple HomePod and whilst it’s an expensive smart speaker, that’s not the only reason one hasn’t made it into my household.  Nothing much as happened with the HomePod since it’s release and HomeKit products are scarce, those which do exist seem to be disproportionately expensive when compared to Amazon Alexa compatible home automation equipment.

So I’ve dusted off my Amazon Echo Dot to give it a try and see if Alexa, despite all the privacy issues, can convert me away from my Apple idealism.

Originally this was supposed to be a plain ol’ run of the mill review but it’s ended up as more of a voyage and discovery of setting up and using the Amazon Echo Dot v2.

Sorry there’s no show! Fatal Hardware error!

You have probably all read this elsewhere already… but if you haven’t and have come here in search of a lovely new Essential Apple Podcast edition you are unfortunately out of luck!. Last week just after Nick and I finished recording the show my microphone suffered a fatal encounter with my wife’s foot (purely accidentally). Despite the image what actually happened was it ripped the USB cable out of the little box of tricks on the end of the cable… I ordered a replacement but Amazon/Royal Mail let me down and failed to deliver in time for Sunday and a new show. If it doesn’t appear in the next couple of days I shall be buying another and sending the last to arrive back! Either way hopefully the show will be back to normal for next week.

Essential Apple Podcast 149: “Let’s Talk” … to Bart Busschots

After a couple of weeks or more of guests and not bothering to look at the news Simon is joined by Bart Busschots of the Let’s Talk podcasts, Taming the Terminal, Programming by Stealth, Nosillacast and more, to poke a stick at a few things that caught their interest over the last couple of weeks. Including the Checkm8 vulnerability, and a video from the Apple archive that is an absolute gem.
Also in case you missed it last time BeLight Software kindly gifted us four licences for Amadine to give away last week so get your entries in for your chance to win a copy!

GIVEAWAYS & OFFERS

  • We have four licences for BeLight’s new vector application Amadine to give away. Email the show on essentialapple@sudomail.com to put your name in the hat. Winners will be announced in 3 weeks time!
  • Listeners of this show can claim $10 off purchases of Luminar and/or Aurora HD 2019 use the coupon code EssentialApple at checkout for your extra discount!
  • Get Donny Yankellow’s 2FunDads iMessage stickers for FREE

Why not come and join the Slack community? You can now just click on this Slackroom Link to sign up and join in the chatter!

Slacker @MacJim has started up a family friendly Flickr group for listeners to share photos because the Darkroom channel in the Slack has become so popular – if you’re interested head over to to the Essential Apple Flickr and request an invitation.

Continue reading → Essential Apple Podcast 149: “Let’s Talk” … to Bart Busschots

Amazon Prime Radio. Adding More Value to Prime’s offering

Amazon have joined the ranks of streaming radio in their “stations” offering for those who have Amazon Prime. Its another compelling reason to purcahse prime even if the one off payment might put some off.

Rather than rather than going down the route of saying radio stations they simply called their online streaming music offering, stations.

Amazon Prime Radio Amazon Prime Radio. Adding More Value to Primes offering

There is an absolute wealth of choices that will cater to even knows with the most eclectic type of music tastes.

Best of all of the stations are advert free.

Like other streaming music services you can teach Amazon your music tastes by simply rating up or down a particular track that’s been played. So far in my very limited testing after selecting down on any boy bands offering they have yet to be seen ever again

The alternatives

Deezer £9.99 / $ monthly. 30 Day free Trial
(requires flash on desktop)
Spotify £9.99 / $ monthly. 30 Day free Trial
Apple Radio £9.99 / $ monthly. 3 Month free Trial

As you might expect from the company that also provides Amazon Web services music loads instantaneously with no lag skipping either forward or backwards on tracks. There is no information with regards to the bit rate of the music stream but I could find at the time of writing.

Granted Amazon Prime Stations may not have the extensive back catalogue as its competitors and if you were a stand-alone offering a really wouldn’t be much in the way of temptation to jump ship if you already have a service from another streaming provider.

Although the user interface does feel a little rudimentary and certainly not as flashy as others it certainly gets the job done and of course you can listen via the Amazon music app, Amazon fire TV and pretty much any other device.

Amazon prime music is available for a 30 day free trial. Just remember to cancel before the end of the trial or you’re going to get bills the full amount for Amazon prime services.

Amazon Brings Movie x-ray to Songs.

One neat thing about movie and tv shows on prime is the nifty x-ray feature. Tapping on the screen on a movie brings up information about the actor and lets you link through to the IMDB page as well as a few other interesting facts.

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Now you can break out the app and enjoy a karaoke session and find out what that lyric you’ve been wondering about after all this time.

— Gallery