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Is Google Listening in on My Phone and Sending Me Ads?

Google

Episode 1819

Jerry from Hatfield, PA

Jerry wants to know how he keeps getting ads on things he was talking about that day. Are they listening to everything he says? But they could be listening for keywords and making those suggestions. Leo says it's not impossible to do, but it would be very hard to do it unnoticed. So Leo doesn't think so. More likely that people around Jerry are searching for similar things and Google is just making a location-based suggestion based on everyone in Jerry's area. We're already giving Google all the information they need without listening in on our conversations. 

Why Can't I Hear Ad Breaks on Streaming Radio?

iHeartRadio

Episode 1802

David from Washington DC

David listens to the iHeartRadio App but he doesn't get the ads, which he enjoys. Leo says that ads are either different or disappear on the streaming app because advertisers don't want to pay for them on the streaming service. This can either be because they are cost-prohibitive, or that an international audience is of little benefit to particular advertisers. And the station doesn't want to give them a freebie. So they get edited out. It's just the nature of streaming radio. One way around this could be to use a VPN to mask location. 

Tuesday's Apple Event Hints at New Apple Watch

Apple Event 9/15

Episode 1728

This Tuesday at 10am PDT, Apple will be streaming an event called "Time Flies," and Leo says it hints at a new, sixth-generation Apple Watch. Leo wonders though, just how much more you can do with a smartwatch. And he also thinks that maybe it'll be the release of a new version of watchOS 7. Other new features will include an expanded sleep feature and more software additions. But he also thinks there really isn't much more you can do hardware-wise. We are in essence at peak watch.

Does Skipping Ads On Youtube Hurt Creators?

YouTube

Episode 1707

GScott from Finland, Minnesota

GScott wants to know if he skips an ad on YouTube, will Leo lose money? Leo says there is money to be made on youtube, but TWiT doesn't make a lot. It's a few thousand a month and it really doesn't matter if he skips the ad, they've been charged for it. And skipping an ad gives youtube and advertisers valuable feedback on what ads work and what doesn't. Leo puts the show on youtube for convenience. Besides, TWiT sells its own ads in the podcast anyway, the So feel free to skip YouTube's ads!

TIVO To Put Ads on Your DVR Recordings

Tivo

Episode 1629

TIVO has announced that they are putting ads in front of every recording they make. Leo says that will be a death knell for the company, which has been struggling since the advent of video on demand. Leo also says it's ironic because TIVO also has a commercial skip button. It's outrageous because you spend hundreds of dollars for a TIVO, and then you pay for a monthly guide subscription. We shouldn't have to deal with ads from TIVO as a reward. Plus, we don't need DVRs anymore, and if we do, Leo says that Plex (a sponsor of the TWiT Network) on your Roku does just as good a job.

Why am I Getting Ads From Another Town in My Stream?

Amazon

Episode 1594

Patti from Los Angeles, CA

Patti listens to the Tech Guy with her Amazon Echo and noticed that she gets commercials from San Diego, not LA. What gives? Leo says that when listening to the stream, the radio station sometimes uses specially sold ads for the internet stream that are more regional, or national in design. So that's likely why she heard ads from San Diego. Her device may also not really know your location, so if she can go into the app, she can add the location and get more accurate ads and weather forecasts.

Why do podcasts quit after 20 minutes?

Podcast

Episode 1593

Len from San Diego, CA

Len listens to his podcasts through Amazon Echo. Leo says that Echo and other home assistants are a boon for podcasters and streaming radio from all over the world. He says the problem though is that it'll completely play live, but if he listens to it pre-recorded, he only gets about 20 minutes. Leo says it all comes down to advertising. If you're listening to a podcast in Cleveland, but you're in San Diego, ads are no benefit to you or the advertiser. And they probably don't pay to have an ad on the download. It's all about economics. Podcasts are like magazines.