2 Days Remaining!

Just less than 2 days until Apple's special event where the iPhone 6 and other items will be announced!
There are strong rumours that the new iPhone will be available in 2 screen sizes, 4.7" and a large 5.5". It is also believed that Apple will go public with their much anticipated 'iWatch' (or whatever name they decide upon) this will be some kind of wearable device.
We won't speculate too much on what will be revealed. You can watch it live at 6pm UK time at http://www,apple.com/live on Tuesday. What are you most looking forward to seeing?


Surprising MacBook Pro Sleep Problem.

Recently we had an on going case of what started out as a MacBook Air randomly going to sleep. Two repairs later by us and another two at an Apple retail store and Apple replaced the customers MacBook Air with a shiny new MacBook Pro Retina. Guess what? The original problem was still there.

The customer came to see us about this and I could not believe that they were still experiencing the problem. Each time we took the Mac in for testing we were unable to replicate the fault whilst we had it but could never keep it for more than a day or so as the customer was desperate to use it.

For about the tenth time I watched as the customer demonstrated the problem to me (he couldn't always get it to do it when he brought it in), he moved the MacBook slightly and the screen dimmed and the unit went to sleep. After he left the Mac with us I had a good think, it must be something external to the Mac, it had to be.
Then it clicked, he was resting it on top of the leather slip case that he always carried it in, the case had two strong magnets to keep the flap closed. As the Mac was moved over these magnets it would trigger the sleep switch in the top case and send a signal to the notebook that its lid had been closed, only it wasn't!
I confirmed the problem and sure enough, this is exactly what it was. I called the customer straight back and he was of course delighted we had finally got to the bottom of it.

Below is a short video we took to demonstrate this strange sleep problem.


'Budget' iMac model released.

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Last week Apple released a 'budget' version of their 21.5" iMac. The iMac line up now starts at £899 for the new 21.5" model. Previously the iMac range started at £1049 but Apple have released this new, somewhat cut down version of the iMac, perhaps to entice more users from the Windows world.

The iMac comes with 8GB of RAM (non upgradable), a 1.4GHz Core i5 processor, with turbo boost up to 2.7GHz, 500GB hard drive and integrated HD5000 graphics. For many people this specification will be more than enough giving them plenty of power, space and RAM for general internet, office use and photo and basic video editing. More serious users or semi-professionals may want to jump in at the higher spec model.

Apple WWDC Event - 2014 - Predictions.

It's nearly that time of year again when Apple holds its World Wide Developer Conference in California.
Each summer Apple holds this event, to get together as many Apple developers as it can under one roof, for a week of conferences, workshops and discussions about Apple's latest developments. 
The conference opens with a keynote presentation from Tim Cook and other Apple execs. Historically, this keynote is where Apple announces new operating systems for both iOS and OS X devices. We will certainly hear about the new iOS 8 and OS X 10.10, (nickname unknown, my guess is Golden Gate or Big Sur).
Apple often releases or at least announces an update to its product line, below are my predictions for OS/software updates and hardware:-

Mac Mini.
Apples entry level and cheapest computer, the Mac Mini, has not seen an update since October 2012 and is well overdue. I think we will see an update to the latest Haswell processors and faster Iris graphics. I believe they may drop the price slightly to entice more people in from the Windows 8 world too.

Apple TV.
I think we may get a glimpse at both new hardware and a new version of iOS for the Apple TV. This will allow the miniature unit to play games and have its own App store. Whether the current unit has enough 'poke' to play these games I am not sure; this may be something only available to the upcoming, 4th generation Apple TV.
I think we may see some kind of controller integration which uses the iPhone 5S/6 motion controller, aka M7. This would allow you to play the games from the comfort of your couch and control them with your iPhone.

iPhone 6.
I'm not sure we will see this yet, it may be talked about alongside the new iOS 8 but the unveiling could be done in September with release shortly after. It will have a bigger screen, better battery life, (hopefully), more RAM would be nice too. It may even be bundled with new earbuds from the strongly rumoured Beats/Apple buyout. Two available screen sizes and sapphire glass screen are other rumours.

MacBook Air Retina/Pro.
There are rumours of a new MacBook Air design with a 12" Retina screen. This may see the demise of the 11" and 13" MacBook Air. The retina displays use more battery power and Apple will not want to sacrifice the current 12 hour battery life of the 13" MacBook Air. Also the 11" 'Air has just had a £100 price reduction to make it more attractive. Its unlikely a Retina screen model will be offered at the same price point.

iOS 8.
iOS is the name of the operating system that runs on the iPad, iPhone and iPod. Apple really need to do a major overhaul on their photo management in iOS. Things like the limit on Photo Stream and on device storage. iCloud backup should also be much more flexible and not be as expensive  for those with 32 or 64GB iOS devices.
There are some strong rumours that we will see the inclusion of enhanced health trackers in iOS 8 and the new iPhone 6. This will tie in to the rumoured HealthBook application and iWatch device.
We should see the ability to AirDrop files between OS X and iOS devices with the next major updates too.
Split screen multi-tasking will allow you to put two applications side by side on your iPad and share information/data between the two applications. This sharing of data is something which is sorely missed in current versions of iOS. Having the two applications side by side and using some kind of temporary storage to allow sharing of data would allow this and perhaps get around the strong sandboxing security features that are built in to iOS. Apple will likely add iOS versions of TextEdit & Preview which will sync via iCloud with the desktop equivalents.

OS X 10.10.
I think the major overhaul we will see here is a flattening of the interface to make it more similar to that which came about with iOS 7. The muting of colours and perhaps use of more pastel shades (as seen in the WWDC 14 logo above) may become more prevelant. As is usual many of the apps will get updates and we might see the inclusion of a new HelthBook app which will tie in with the iOS version.

iWatch.
I've left this one to last as things seem to have gone quiet on this front recently. If the HelathBook app/system is announced then the 'watch' or iBand/iRing may be required to get all  the data needed in to the monitoring app. The iWatch device will be some kind of wearable which will connect with your iPhone over Bluetooth LE and push notifications from your phone or health and environment data to your phone. Tim Cook hinted strongly at a new product line that Apple are involved in, whether the iWatch will be it, remains to be seen.

Those are my guesses at what we might see and hear about at WWDC this June, what would you like to see?

Ubertechs iPad Giveaway, Winner Announced!

Firstly, a big THANK YOU to all the people who took part and wished us well in our recent iPad giveaway competition. Sadly there can only be one winner! Earlier today I asked one of our friendly security staff, Darren at White Cross Business Park, to draw the lucky winner at random.

Congratulations to Stephen Parkman, please contact Ubertechs to claim your prize.

Below is a short video I took as Darren picked out the winner.

Thanks again folks and please stay tuned for more giveaways in the future. 

Ubertechs 10th Anniversary, iPad Giveaway.

At the end of April 2014 Ubertechs, will be celebrating 10 years in business.
We would like to mark this occasion by giving one lucky person an iPad Mini absolutely free.
The winner will be drawn at random at the end of April.

The rules for entry are:-

  • You must be subscribed to the Ubertechs newsletter. (See form below)
  • You must 'like' our Ubertechs Facebook page at http://facebook.com/ubertechs
  • You must share and 'like' the iPad giveaway post on our Facebook page.
  • You must be available to collect the iPad in person from Ubertechs and agree to have your photo taken for our social media pages.

Please feel free to comment on this post and don't forget to follow the rules above.

You must be subscribed to our newsletters with a valid contact email address in order to be eligible for the prize. You will receive a confirmation.




Good luck and here's to the next 10 years!

This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook.

 

Warning - Check your laptop / tablet bag!

What you see below is the left side of a 2013 MacBook Air. From left to right; Magsafe 2 socket, USB 3 socket, headphone socket.
But look more closely at the USB and headphone socket and you might just catch a glimpse of something which should not be there!

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We had this MacBook Air brought in to us recently as the customer could not get any USB devices or headphones to fit in the sockets.
On closer inspection we found what looked like a tiny bead lodged in the back of both sockets.
We tipped out the neoprene sleeve the laptop was brought in and our counter became covered in tiny 'beads' of silica gel!

When these protective sleeves are shipped they often contain a small bag of silica gel to help absorb any moisture, this bag had become damaged in the bottom of the sleeve and the tiny beads worked their way inside these ports.

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Fortunately for the customer they had become lodged in the ports on the left side of the MacBook which houses a small input/output board. Had it been the other side it could have been much worse and may have resulted in the logic board being removed or worse still replaced!

So check your laptop / notebook / tablet / iPad bag today and remove the small packet of silica before it is too late!

iMac (27-inch): AMD Radeon 6970M Video Card Replacement Program

Last year Apple released a 'quality' program to replace some AMD 6970M video cards in some iMacs which are affected by a problem with the cards. Yesterday we changed one of these cards for a customer and thought we should remind people that this program is in place and runs for 3 years from the date of purchase of your iMac.

See the Apple article here to see if your iMac may be affected.

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Above you can see the iMac with its logic board removed and the graphics cards at the bottom of the photo. All our work is carried out on ESD protected benches which are regularly tested. Contact Ubertechs today if you think your iMac may need repair.

Fifteen locations, five continents, a single day: January 24 - 2014.

30 years to the day from the relase of the Apple Macintosh, Apple created this short film showing the Macintosh being used in 15 locations and in many different ways. The film was shot entirely on iPhone 5s and directed live from a studio in Los Angeles via FaceTime. Due to differences in time zones it took 36 hours to film and produced 70 hours of footage which was then edited to an original orchestral score.

View the original post and watch the video on Apples website.

We don't see many of these!

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We had this 'old' iMac G4 brought in today for a spruce up, RAM etc. Don't see too many of these at our workshop, I think the last one we repaired was 4 years ago or more.

They are beautifully engineered, the display sits on a movable arm and unlike all the modern iMacs, allows you to reposition both the height and angle of the display. It dates back to 2003 and comes complete with built in 56k dial-up modem!

Cracked MacBook Pro Retina Display.

As you can see from the photo below this MacBook Pro Retina has had a small bump to one of the rear corners. Due to the tolerances these displays are manufactured to, it has cracked the Retina LCD display behind. It has not damaged the glass cover but will now require a complete new display housing/screen to repair this damage.

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Below you can see the damage as seen when the MacBook is powered up.

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