Tech Talk

Mac Format - - MAC SOS - by Luis Vil­la­zon

I was try­ing out a bean­bag cush­ion for my iPad mini last week and to check the an­gle, I FaceTimed my girl­friend, even though she was sit­ting on the sofa next to me. A cheery Welsh­man an­swered. My girl­friend and I looked at each other and I can­celled the call in hor­ror. I called her again and got the same guy again. What was go­ing on? I had def­i­nitely picked the right con­tact in FaceTime and we had suc­cess­fully called each other lots of times be­fore. For the next few days I played the same ghastly game of chat roulette – some­times FaceTime would con­nect me to my girl­friend and

Some­times it con­nected me to my girl­friend, and some­times to the Welsh guy

some­times to the Welsh guy. As soon as word got out that your video chat could ran­domly pair you with a stranger, who would use the ser­vice? A class ac­tion law­suit was just a mat­ter of time.

But it wasn’t a bug. Turns out the con­tact de­tails for my girl­friend had the wrong mo­bile phone num­ber. It was off by one digit. When her MacBook Air was on, FaceTime could reach her through her email ad­dress. But when it was off, it tried to use the mo­bile num­ber in­stead. Nor­mally this showed she was not avail­able, which is what I would ex­pect, since she has an An­droid phone. But it was ac­tu­ally try­ing to FaceTime this other guy, which didn’t work ei­ther be­cause he had an An­droid phone too.

Un­til a few days ago when he up­graded to an iPhone 5…

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