Not Receiving Voicemail? + UV Cellphone Sanitizing Charger

Back To School

If you missed the promotions during tax-free weekend, you haven’t missed out completely. Apple still has their Free Studio Beats promotion with the purchase of a Mac for college students. That is on top of the education pricing you get on the Mac as well as the 20% off AppleCare+. Take a look at this year’s Back to School Program here and see if you or your student(s) qualify!

Not Receiving Voicemail?

Are you suspicious about not receiving voicemails on your mobile phone?  You may need to complete these troubleshooting steps to get it back. First, hold down the number 1 on your dial-pad.  That will call your voicemail box. If you don’t remember your voicemail password then hang up and dial 611 to reset your password first.  Once you have a password, hang up, turn the phone off and then turn the phone back on again. If you tap the voicemail button and it is still not working at this point then you need to hold down the number 1 again and put in the new voicemail password you just created.  Then tap the voicemail button and everything should come back up and start to populate with old voicemails. If you have a voicemail box that is showing as empty but says it is full when people call, then you will need to call your carrier to have them reset your voicemail on their end.

How to Fix Apple's App Store Bug

If your Mac won't let you update one of Apple's apps until you click on 'Accept,' here's what to do when there is no such button according to appleinsider.

iOS Software Update Version 12.4

The iOS 12.4 and WatchOS 5.3 updates became available.  This update includes a security fix for the Walkie-Talkie app on Apple Watch and re-enables Walkie-Talkie functionality.  It also introduces the ability to wirelessly transfer data and migrate directly from an old iPhone to a new iPhone during the setup process.  To access the update, go to Settings --> General --> Software Update. I always recommend completing a backup before running updates just in case an issue arises.

Phonesoap UV Cellphone Sanitizing Charger

I found this on “Throughout the day, your smartphone is picking up bacteria. Enough bacteria to make it 18 times dirtier than a public toilet. So before you put your fingers on it and push it up against your face, let this sanitizing charger clean things up. PhoneSoap uses UV light to kill that nasty bacteria when you place your phone beneath the scientifically proven germicidal UVC light. It also doubles as a charger with two external charging ports on the back for your other devices. It's able to fit all phones, including the larger iPhone 8 Plus, and can sanitize anything that fits inside.” Buy yours on Amazon today!

LG UltraFine 5K Display

According to MacRumors, “Last week LG released a new version of its UltraFine 5K Display with USB-C connectivity, allowing it to be used with the 2018 iPad Pro for the first time. You can purchase it through Apple here. There are so many monitors on the market right now so although this one is beautiful, I’m not sure the almost $1300 price point is where it should be to compete. Here is a great monitor that I like to recommend as well for all-in-one workstations. This is another great option, a client of mine recently purchased this and I’m in love with it!

Tax-Free Holiday Weekend + Bose Noise Cancelling Headphones

Apple Still Has Your Back

Apple pushed another silent security update to our Macs to address vulnerabilities similar to the Zoom app using your computer as a web server. The recent offenders are RingCentral and Zhumu. I love that Apple will just go and find the vulnerability and take it out before waiting for 3rd parties to fix it on their end!

Tax-Free Holiday Weekend

The 2019 tax-free holiday weekend begins at 12:01 a.m. on Friday, July 26 and ends Sunday, July 28 at 11:59 p.m. Take a look at this year’s Tennessee Tax-Free Holiday website to see what all will be eligible next weekend! This holiday weekend is bigger than Black Friday for some stores. So if you are not wanting to get stuck in traffic, you may want to steer clear of the malls.

Bose Noise Cancelling Headphones

The Verge had a cool article about the new Bose Noise Cancelling Headphones 700. Of course, nothing’s perfect but they claim to have “The best voice calls you’ll experience on any headphones”. That’s pretty intriguing to me. I’ve had a couple sets of AirPods and love them, but the audio quality still isn’t where I want them to be. Recently Sony has jumped in the noise cancelling headphones game and briefly took over. They’ve created a strong fan base due to how they tune their headphone sound. Bose is obviously determined to win their top spot back in this category and the reviews say they’ve done it!

Nomad Base Station Apple Watch Edition

This new wireless charging base for the iPhone and Apple Watch is gorgeous! Supporting simultaneous charging of up to three devices, it is compatible with all Apple Watch models and iPhone 8 and newer iPhones. It is currently on backorder but you can get on the waiting list for one in late August here.

Is Your HomePod Making A Clicking Sound? Here's How To Fix It

Appleinsider published this article on how to fix a clicking or popping sound you may hear coming from your HomePod. They say, “The good news is that you may be able to fix it yourself, but the bad news is that you may have to take it to Apple.” So check out the article for more info if this is happening to you.

Apple Card Is Almost Here

Apple Card is almost here and there is so much information already out on what you need to know before it launches. Claiming to be the most secure credit card ever, this will definitely be one to look into if you are in the market for a credit card. Take a look at what Appleinsider has to say here if you are interested in finding out more information.

New Hands-Free Law in Tennessee + New MacBook Pro and MacBook Air Models

New Hands-Free Law in Tennessee

Starting July 1, a new law passed in Tennessee where you cannot be holding a device while driving.  According to the Tennessean, “A driver's first violation will result in a $50 fine. If the violation is the driver's third offense or it results in a wreck, the fine jumps to $100. If the violation occurs in a work zone when workers are present or in a school zone when warning flashers are on, the fine is $200.”  iPhone iOS has a “Do Not Disturb While Driving” option to help with distracting, or now tempting notifications. You can enable this in Settings, <Do Not Disturb>, and choose from three options for how and when to activate this feature. Drive safe out there!

Apple Temporarily Disables Walkie-Talkie App for Apple Watch

According to MacRumors and TechCrunch, Apple just announced that they were just made aware of a vulnerability related to the Walkie-Talkie app on the Apple Watch and have disabled the function in order to fix the issue. They said, “We concluded that disabling the app was the right course of action as this bug could allow someone to listen through another customer’s iPhone without consent”. I’m not sure how popular this feature really was anyways but so glad that Apple is making sure they ensure that privacy is a top priority.

Apple Pushes Automatic Mac Software Update to Remove Vulnerable Zoom Web Server

Also on MacRumors, “Earlier this week, a serious vulnerability with the Zoom video conferencing app for macOS was disclosed, with attackers potentially able to hijack users' webcams.” Zoom did release a fixed app version last Tuesday. “Apple however took things one step further and pushed out a silent macOS update that removes the web server, reports TechCrunch. The update was deployed automatically, so users don't have to manually apply it in order for it to take effect. ‘Apple said its actions will protect users both past and present from the undocumented web server vulnerability without affecting or hindering the functionality of the Zoom app itself.’ The update will now prompt users if they want to open the app, whereas before it would open automatically.” I think it’s pretty cool that Apple deployed a fix before Zoom even got to an update!

New MacBook Air

Apple announced that they updated the MacBook Air with a True Tone Display and a lower starting price of $1099. According to MacRumors, the new base model still continues to get you a 1.6GHz dual-core Core i5 processor, 8GB of RAM, a 128GB SSD, and Intel UHD Graphics 617. You can also save $100 more dollars if you are a qualified student through Apple's education store.

12” Macbook Discontinued

The 12” MacBook has been discontinued.  With the recent update to the MacBook Air, and lower price, it just makes sense to get rid of this model in Apple’s lineup in my opinion.

New MacBook Pro

Apple has removed the old 13-inch MacBook Pro with Function Keys from its lineup and updated the base model to now include the Touch Bar, Touch ID, True Tone, and the Apple T2 chip. Starting at $1,199 you can check out the new models here.

The Necessary Foundation for Digital Minimalism + Several Shortcut Apps for your Mac

The Necessary Foundation for Digital Minimalism

When it comes to minimalism, having a core set of tools for the things you use most is absolutely critical. Knowing how to use them well is the other key component. Without this in place, when you scale up your projects and/or add people to your team, this becomes a massive problem. 

As a digital minimalist, G-Suite for Business is the core software platform I recommend for your business. With it, you get the best email on the market, contacts, calendars, docs, file storage for your entire company and much more. All of this using your own domain name so internally and customer facing is all branded with your names and logos. Just about every app and service out there works with Google so you’re compatible with virtually everything.

Since it touches just about every element of your organization, it’s best to intentionally design how you use it in a way that serves your needs now, but also allows you to scale effortlessly without having to restructure your accounts, calendars, and file organization later. This not only saves you time in your day to day work now, but will save you a bunch of money later on down the road by not having to redo everything. 

The intentional design and training on what’s possible with these tools are where digital minimalism comes in. You have almost everything you need with one set of tools. When you cut away all the extra junk, you can go deep in your understanding of these tools instead of having to learn a little bit about a whole bunch of things. If you’ve found yourself struggling with technology and things never seem to work for you, or it’s hard to remember how everything works, we should talk. I’d love to help simplify everything through an intentional conversation and some training on how to use your technology, not just G Suite.

If you are not using G Suite, let’s talk! It would be well worth your time to discuss an overall strategy for the most cohesive system possible that can save you a lot of time and money in the long run. Avoid unnecessary subscriptions and the trap of shiny new apps that promise the world and don’t give you what you really need. Sign up for a session with me if you’re ready to take things to the next level. We’ll talk about how you’re using your technology now, where you want to go, and map out a plan of how to get there. Not really sure where you want to go? We can talk about that too. Sign up here!

FaceTime Attention Correction

When enabled, FaceTime Attention Correction adjusts the set of your eyes so that it looks like you're making eye contact with the person you're FaceTiming even when you're looking at the iPhone's screen rather than the camera itself. This will be available with the iOS 13 update this fall. To enable this feature, go to Settings > FaceTime, and turn on “FaceTime Attention Correction”.

Flotato - (Free)

Flotato is designed to create web apps from your favorite website, so you can get quick access to the web services that you use most often. Flotato web apps can be dragged right into the dock, so you can set up quick access for things like Google Docs, Facebook Messenger, Netflix on the web, favorite news sites, and more.

Pock - (Free)

Pock is a simple little Mac app that's designed to make your Touch Bar more useful by adding your dock to your Touch Bar so you can quickly access your apps and even files within folders. The Pock options are customizable, so you can choose what you need most, adding options like a now playing widget for controlling music, a status widget for getting info your WiFi connection or battery level, and more.

One Switch - ($4.99)

One Switch is a nifty Mac menu bar app that adds various switches to the Mac's menu bar. You can add toggles that will do things like hide desktop options, activate dark mode, keep the Mac awake, connect to headphones, toggle on Do Not Disturb, activate Night Shift, bring up the Screen Saver, and more. Options are customizable so you can make your One Switch menu do just want you need.

Moab Apple Watch Case + Band

Looking for an Apple Watch Case for your summer hikes? Here is a new one that I came across on Uncrate. It comes with a waterproof nylon band, is odor resistant, and even has reflective stitched details so it is easy to find in the dark. It is available for the Series 4 Apple Watch in both the 40mm and 44mm sizes. Check it out!

Apple Sign In + Catalina OS Beta

Apple Sign In

Have you noticed that sometimes websites will offer to let you sign into their site with Facebook or Google? It’s a pretty convenient option because you don’t have to create a new username and password just for their site. We all have too many logins to keep track of already so it makes sense to use. The downside is if you’re using those sign in options, you’re sharing all your Facebook information with that website. Same thing with Google. I wonder what that website is sharing back to Facebook and Google…

Here’s the interesting thing. Apple announced Apple Sign In during their most recent keynote presentation. Unlike Facebook and Google who are capitalizing on the convenience, Apple is taking the opposite approach. They will let you log in with your Apple ID, but their goal is to keep your info private and secure. If you want to find out more, here’s Apple’s official page geared towards developers. I don’t think they have fully rolled this out yet, but I wanted you to know to look for this and that it’s a safe option to use going forward. I do not recommend using your Google or Facebook login for other sites since their goal is to sell your information.

Yoshi Gas

You have probably heard about car washing services while you are parked at your office. Well Yoshi delivers gas, washes and oil changes directly to your car! You can fill up for a big discount when you use SHAWNLAC9A. Check out the App here.

Looking for the Fastest Network?

PCMag recently shared their annual carrier showdown and AT&T was named 2019’s fastest U.S. Mobile Network. Over the past decade this title has flipped between AT&T and Verizon but with AT&T improving their 4G network to make room for 5G they have won this round.

Ikea Homekit Smart Shades

According to Apple Insider, “One of the most hotly anticipated HomeKit products in recent memory, Ikea's Smart Shades, will finally launch in August after a months-long delay, the company says.” Very few HomeKit-compatible shades are on the market so it will be interesting to see how good these really are. Definitely a cool concept, especially if they offer black-out options.

Promotion for Amazon's Upcoming Prime Day

According to MacRumors, Amazon is planning on putting a promotion price on the Mophie Juice Pack Air Battery Cases for iPhone XS and XS Max for their upcoming Prime Day. You must be an Amazon Prime member to take advantage of this promotion but the deals are usually pretty good. Wondering what else might be going on sale on Prime Day? Here’s a link to the things they’re currently promoting. Happy shopping!

Catalina OS Beta 

I know it is exciting to get the latest and greatest tech, and it’s even cooler when you can get it before it has officially launched.  I want to caution you on a couple things to be aware of before you download the most recent OS Beta released last week. If you decide to download a Beta software on any of your devices, iOS included, make sure it is not on your primary device.  Beta software is for testing purposes so usually full of bugs that can cause your apps or device to not fully function until the official release of software.

If you’re cool with the risk, make sure you backup first! For iPhones and iPads, plug your device to iTunes and archive the backup.  It is a potential recovery option if you need to go backwards in your software version. For your Mac, I’d recommend using Carbon Copy Cloner for a full backup or using Time Machine. Remember, iCloud does not back up your entire computer.

Podcasts with Mike Gonzalez + Recall on Select MacBook Pros

Podcasts with Mike Gonzalez

I had the opportunity recently to sit down with Mike Gonzalez from The Founders Craft to discuss Digital Minimalism where we talk about the process of choosing the right technology for your business. You can check out the episode on his YouTube Channel here.

Mike Gonzalez is the owner for PerfectHQ, a digital product design company. We have very similar ideals in how software should be designed, digital minimalism and a number of other things. His podcast has a ton of great stuff in there and if you need someone who’s incredible at intentional design of digital stuff, this is your guy! Check out

We also discussed how to simplify your Inbox.  If you’ve got a messy inbox, you need to check this one out!  We get into different tools like Sanebox,, Spark, G Suite etc.

Audio Versions are available on iTunes and Spotify viaPodcasts

Green Screen in iMovie for iOS

If you use iMovie for iOS to make quick edits of videos you create, this new feature may be for you.  They have added green screen which allows you to remove anything in the background that’s green or blue.  So you can play around with videos on top of each other. Check out and example and the full list of new features from The Verge here.

Your Typo May Be Costing You

Last year I wrote about an app called Grammarly.It checks your typing for mistakes and helps you correct them before you press send on that email or submit that important document. A follower of mine recently sent me this report based on that recommendation. It gives a numbers perspective on how spelling errors may be affecting your bottom line. I was shocked to see how a small typo in an ad can render it almost completely ineffective. Check it out!

Apple Announced a Recall on Select MacBook Pros

Last week Apple announced a voluntary recall and replacement program for select 15-inch MacBook Pro models. According to MacRumors, Apple says affected units in need of replacement can be identified by entering a Mac's serial number in the recall program page here. You can read the full article from MacRumors here but if you have one of these models make sure you get it checked out sooner than later!

Your Daily Drive Playlist from Spotify

If you are a Spotify user, check out this new playlist tailored for your long commute. With a blend of news podcasts and your favorite music mix, you are set up to not have news overload. It updates throughout the day so you won’t feel like you keep hitting the repeat button as well.

Lutron Aurora

If you use Philips Hue Bulbs, you may want to look into Aurora by Lutron.  We all get so excited to have our smart light bulbs that we can program to turn on and off, talk to in order to change the color, and even add accessories like motion detectors.  Apple Insider has recently put this article out about one of the major challenges that come along with this smart tech when it comes to light switches.  They are talking about the “less than ideal situation when someone uses the light switch on the wall, killing power to the bulbs and rendering your lights useless”.  They say that the Aurora fixes this issue allowing you to cover the switch on the wall with a smart dimmer that keeps Philips Hue smart bulbs in ‘ready mode’ and provides easy dimming without losing power or connection to your Hue Hub.

This launches July 15 but you can preorder them now.

Catalyst Waterproof iPad Case

If you are looking for a fully waterproof iPad case then check out this case by Catalyst. They are available for preorder now and shipping in July for the1st Generation (2018) 11” iPad Pro and the 3rd generation (2018) 12.9" iPad Pro.

Huge Sale on Apple Products + Best Alternatives to Adobe Photoshop for iOS and Mac

Huge Sale on Apple Products

I have had several requests lately of where to find the best deals on Mac Computers. is usually where I send people, but this week they dropped this article talking about a blowout sale that B&H is having.  Definitely check it out if you want upwards of $900 off the MacBook Pro!  There are also deals on iPads and Apple Watches if you are interested.

Dashboard is no more

Dashboard, a longtime Mac feature has been phasing out for the last few years, and has now been eliminated in macOS Catalina. The Dashboard option used to be a prominent Mac feature, giving us easy access to sticky notes, a weather interface, a clock, a calculator, and other customizable widgets. It was disabled by default starting in macOS 10.10 Yosemite, and in the current version of macOS, Mojave, it's still disabled unless you seek it out.  In Catalina, there is no more Dashboard app at all. It can't be enabled via Mission Control and there's no sign of it in the operating system, marking its official exit from macOS. Let’s be honest though, did you even use it?

Gmail Confidential Mode coming June 25

When Gmail messages are sent in confidential mode, it helps protect from unauthorized access, and recipients don’t have the option to forward, copy, print, or download their content or attachments. Senders can also set an expiration date for messages sent with confidential mode and revoke access to them at any time.  To do this, Open Gmail on your computer, On the left hand side click ‘Sent’, Open the confidential email, and click ‘Remove Access.

You can choose to enable or disable confidential mode but you must select the appropriate option in the Admin console for your organization before June 25, 2019. You can find this setting in the Admin console by navigating to Apps > G Suite > Settings for Gmail > User settings.  

If you do not take action before June 25, your domain will automatically have confidential mode turned on for your users, meaning that users will have the option to send emails with confidential mode.  You can check out Google’s support page for more information.


I recently switched over to using DialPad from GoogleVoice and so far I really like it.  I have less dropped calls and it is a lot easier to find contacts and send messages. It also has the ability to link up with other correspondence so I can find previous emails and notes from the contact in DialPad. Keep in mind this is a paid service vs Google Voice which is free for Gmail users and paid for G Suite. Google Voice was just recently added to G Suite and has some new features.

Portable Strength-Training Fitness Device

I just recently came across the Activ5.  It is a portable strength-training fitness device that gives you the ability to complete strength training on the go or in the comfort of your home or office.  The app has coaching on over 100 full-body, no impact and isometric workouts and even personalized calibrations for your strength levels. They even use games in the app to make your workouts fun and interactive.  You can check out some highlight videos here and if you would like to purchase one, check it out here for a great price.

Welcome - A Smart Travel Companion

Looking for an app that will help you plan your travel adventures this summer?  Welcome is an app that does just that! Welcome uses intelligence that automatically generates itineraries on the fly, giving you the ability to adjust as you spend more/less time in a place, and allowing you to easily skip stops that don’t interest you while helping you fill that time slot with something that might.  The suggestions come from your past interests, local experts, and reviews, and also adjust based on location, available transit, and the weather so no need to worry if you will get stuck outside in a rainstorm. You can download it from the App store here.

Best Alternatives to Adobe Photoshop for iOS and Mac

For all of you who’ve thought about getting Photoshop, I wanted to share this article I found by AppleInsider. There are so many other apps available on your Mac and mobile device than Adobe Photoshop for editing your photos. AppleInsider has listed several alternatives or potential apps you could use in addition to Photoshop. I was actually just talking to a client about this the other day and recommended Pixelmator instead of Photoshop. It’s cheap and not subscription based.

A New Privacy App + A Major Google Drive/Docs Update

A New Privacy App

Uncrate has found a gem of an App.  Meet Jumbo. It claims to be the best thing you can do for your social media privacy, next to deleting your accounts altogether.  Jumbo lets you clean your personal data across all social media apps and internet services from just one App.  Take a look at it here.

Photo by  Web Hosting  on  Unsplash

Gmail, Send Later, Remind Me

Gmail has really leveled up lately! Many of the features I use Spark for are now available in and the Gmail app on mobile devices.  My favorite upgrade is Send Later and Remind Me has been really helpful to see who hasn’t responded that I need to follow up with.

1Password Update

If you haven’t noticed, 1Password got a nice little update and I’ve got some hints to share with you today about it. The biggest thing is pointing out 1Password Mini. That is the icon at the top right hand corner of the screen near the time. If you click on it, you can quickly search for the login that you’re looking for, or if you’re currently on a webpage, it’s going to show you any logins that apply for that page. If you have Evernote open, it should automatically bring up that password. At any point you can drag a username or password out of that little window right into the password field in your app or webpage. Another big feature is their ability to generate new passwords. Change the recipe to have however many numbers and symbols and hit the new Save and Copy button so you can fill it into the webpage. The last thing I want to mention is the Pin on Screen button. The last one didn’t make sense and most people didn’t use it. Now, if you need to keep the window up for a minute, you can find that button quickly and easily. I find this most handy when I’m filling in things like my drivers license or bank account info.

Have Too Many Slack Accounts?

Do you have too many different Slack accounts? If you are only a part of someone else’s Slack for limited communication, or work on a specific project, did you know you can share a Channel with another workspace? My biggest client and I share a channel. I previously had an account and was a part of a number of channels, but since I primarily work on tech for them, we decided to just create a shared channel. Now I don’t have to keep up with a ton of communication coming at me from who-knows-how-many areas, and everything flows into one place from that client. If this sounds interesting, check out how to set it up here or shoot me an email and I can help you set this up. I’ve got some REALLY great suggestions for keeping Slack under control with threading and such too.

Major Google Drive/Docs Update!

I can’t tell you how excited I am about this update! A big reason why a lot of people never got into using Google Drive is because any time you wanted to edit a Word, Excel or Powerpoint file, Google would convert it to a Google Doc, Sheet or Slide. Not anymore! Open up an Office document and it just opens straight up and lets you edit and save it in the same Office format. You can always convert it to a Google Doc, PDF or whatever format you want in the file menu, but by default nothing changes. This is a big deal for companies where some people just really prefer using Word and others like Google Docs. If you have the Chrome Extension, Office editor for Docs, Sheet, and Slides, go to the Window menu and click Extensions. Delete the Office editor for Docs, Sheet, and Slides extension.

New OS for iPad, iPhone, Watch, and Mac coming this Fall

With the new iPad OS we get a new home screen, slide over and split view, Sidecar to make your iPad a secondary display for your computer, and so many more great features that will possibly make you wonder why you need a computer.

With iOS 13 we are going to get Dark Mode, Photo and camera enhancements, video editing tools like rotate, crop, and auto enhance (I’m super excited about this), new privacy and security features, updated Maps, even a new Siri voice and a whole bunch more!

WatchOS 6 is a major update that brings additional focus to third-party apps.  With a “Dose" app for tracking medication, and new health feature for monitoring the ambient noise around you.  There's also a new Calculator app, a new Voice Memos app, plus several new watch faces.

In MacOS Catalina, iTunes has been replaced by three apps: Music, Podcasts, and TV (coming later in the year).  It also has a useful new Sidecar feature, designed to turn the iPad into a secondary display for the Mac. Screen Time is being added for Mac.  Photos has an updated interface that better highlights your best pictures, Safari includes a new start page with Siri Suggestions, Mail has a new feature for blocking emails and another new option for muting threads, and the Reminders app has been overhauled and is now more useful.

New Mac Pro Desktop, Apple 6K Display + 5 Tips to Tailor Your Slack Settings


WWDC is this week and some huge announcements were made during the Keynote to kick it off.  You can watch the full keynote here.  In the midst of the awaited software announcements, they pulled out a new Mac Pro and 6K Display that is bound to be a powerhouse duo.  It will cost you though. Starting at $5,999 for the Mac Pro and another $4,999 for the display, and if you want the stand for the display you will be looking at another $999.  That’s a base price of almost $12,000 if you want the whole shebang! They are pretty incredible though. The Mac Pro is insanely fast and beautifully designed. I don’t know of anything like it in the market. Same with the display, it’s 32” and 6K with advancements in range and contrast that are pretty ridiculous. Anyone else drooling?

Disney +

With so many streaming services on the market it was probably only a matter of time before Disney got in on the action. They own so much, including everything from Marvel to Star Wars. Everything that’s in the Disney Vault is coming out and will be included. No rated R material will make it on here even though they now own Hulu. They’re going to keep more adult content there. For all you Disney, Marvel and Star Wars fans, you’re about to have everything in one place and lots more content to come. Check out more about it here.  Launching November 12!

New iPod Touch

Apple updated the iPod Touch to have a minimum of 256 GB of storage. Crazy huh? Lots of videos to be stored on there if you like. My question is, who’s using this though? When I saw this I briefly considered if I could get rid of my iPhone and switch to this. I did an experiment in the month of May of a serious digital detox where I pushed the boundaries of my digital life seeing how little I could use it and to what effect. More on this another time, but I’ll just tell you this, I had the most relaxing vacation ever! All that to say, I’m not giving up my phone for this little guy. But for those of you who want to allow your kids to almost have a phone, it’s cheaper, faster and has more storage than ever.

Tame Your Slack Notifications

I have a lot of people that still haven’t tailored their notifications, especially those that are new to Slack. So here’s some tips for toning down the notifications so you can get mission critical alerts without being bombarded by every comment posted.

Prioritize Important Channels, Silence the Others

Slack groups usually have multiple channels for different conversations.  Although leaving a channel is one way to silence its alerts, there are less drastic measures to take.

Open the channel (or group message) in Slack and tap on its title, then select Notifications.  Here you can choose to either “Mute Entire Channel,” ignore certain kinds of @channel pings, or only get notified about specific mentions or keywords on your iPhone or iPad (without affecting your desktop alerts).

Suspend Notifications When You’re Out

Spending the day in deep work?  Mute Slack notifications for a channel by tapping the triple-dot menu in the upp[er right corner and selecting Snooze Notifications.  You can quiet Slack for as little as 20 minutes or up to 24 hours.

Schedule Daily Do-Not-Disturb Times

You can also stop Slack from messaging you at the same time each day.  Tap the triple-dot menu in the upper right corner and select Settings, then go into the Do Not Disturb setting.  Here, schedule a specific time every day to silence your Slack channel.

Wrangle Your Desktop and Mobile Alerts

In Slack’s notification preferences, you can limit both how and where you’re notified. For example, you can choose to get alerts on your iPhone and Slack’s desktop client simultaneously, or only after your desktop has been idle.  This is a great way to eliminate duplicate alerts.

Make Good Use of Keywords

Keyword notifications can be set for any word or even an emoji. Tap the triple-dot menu in the upper right corner, select Settings, then Notifications  Toward the bottom, select the My Keywords option and enter all the keywords or emoji you always want to be notified about.

New MacBook Pros + US Senate Passes Bill to cut down on robocalling

Apple Refreshes MacBook Pros

If you were waiting to purchase a MacBook Pro until after the WWDC announcement June 3rd, you may not want to.  Apple seems to be doing more “silent launches” for hardware while spending more time speaking about software at their presentation events.  Still it came as a surprise that refreshed MacBook Pros were launched last week. The refresh includes faster Intel processors with up to eight cores for the first time, as well as "new materials" added to the keyboard to hopefully reduce issues such as sticky and repeating keys.  I’d say it’s a great time to buy. Check them out here!

Google updates Maps, Search and Assistant so you can Order Food without App

Do you ever search Google for restaurants near you and then open up a separate app to order?  Now you can order food for delivery or pickup across Search, Maps, and the Google Assistant apps in thousands of cities across the U.S.. Your search results can also show you restaurants that are available from multiple delivery services.  Just say “Hey Google, order food from (insert restaurant name)”. As the assistant gets to know your favorite meal you order, you will be able to order again by saying, “Reorder food from (insert restaurant name)”.

Running Out of Space on Your Mac?

Are you finding that you are running out of storage space? I use a tool called CleanMyMac X to free up space on my computer when I’m running low. It finds all kinds of junk that builds up in the operating system and keeps me running fast without running a bunch of different utilities to clean things up. It will properly uninstall apps for you too if you haven’t cleaned those up in a while.

US Senate Passes Bill to cut down on robocalling

Check this out. 30% of calls in the US in 2018 were robocalls. In 2019 it’s estimated 44% will be robocalls. The United States Senate voted almost unanimously last week to approve an anti-robocalling bill that would cut down on the number of illegal robocalls that people receive. Apparently our lawmakers are just as sick of those spam calls as we are :)

New 4K 23.7-inch LG UltraFine Display

Apple this week began stocking a new 4K 23.7-inch LG UltraFine Display, which replaces the original 21.5-inch 4K LG UltraFine Display that was pulled from retail stores and the online Apple Store earlier this year. I love the resolution in the previous monitors so I’m sure this one is going to be incredible. It has built in speakers but no webcam. That’s fine because the ones built in previously were not great either. You can still find other monitors for cheaper, but this one will likely look WAY better given their history.

Gemini Photos App

Feeling overwhelmed with your photos on your iPhone?  The Gemini Photos App may be for you. It is a tool that helps you tackle the mess in your iPhone photo libraries.  It was featured as Apple’s App of the day recently. Some of the features include, checking for similar photos or duplicates, an option to remove blurry photos, and pick out clutter shots like screenshots you may have saved accidentally.