Articles about iOS

Could 13-inch MacBook Pro Retina Display with Force Touch trackpad be right for you? [Review]

MacBoo Pro 2015

Reviewing most any MacBook Pro is a pointless exercise, because this year's model isn't much different from the previous—or the one before. That's why I typically buy refurbished rather than new. But I broke with that practice last month, after a sudden electrical calamity laid my wife's laptop to rest. Fried and died it is. With Apple releasing new versions of iOS and OS X and launching a streaming music service, a summer sojourn seemed opportune.

I considered going Windows 10, which arrives later this month. But most of my BetaNews colleagues are headed that way, so I set out down the Apple reviews track. Again, I probably wouldn't have done so if not for my wife's computer catastrophe. I lent her my Chromebook Pixel LS and purchased a new MBP. She will never give up the Google laptop, BTW.

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Siri knows what makes Cookie Monster sad

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Siri has become known for providing amusing answers to certain questions and today a new one has taken the internet by storm.

When asked the question "What is zero divided by zero?", Siri responds in a witty yet comical manner, citing Cookie Monster’s cookies as an example.

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Facebook for iOS gets new photo-editing tools

Facebook rides roughshod over privacy laws

The 2013, Facebook’s failure to acquire Snapchat for $3 billion went across the world like a forest fire. Since then, it seems that the social networking giant has adopted some of the best features of Snapchat and has simply started including them in their apps.

The Facebook Slingshot app is one example of the social networking giant’s attempt to imitate Snapchat. The app lets users send colourful drawings and text to friends similar to Snapchat. Other features such as filters, text, and stickers are now added to the list.

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Huddle launches updated iOS collaboration app

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Businesses need their employees to be able to collaborate on projects but the increasingly mobile nature of the workforce and the pressures of BYOD use can make that hard to achieve.

Collaboration software specialist Huddle is updating its iOS apps to provide iPhone and iPad users with a simple and secure way to collaborate on content and manage projects while on the move, as well as delivering a more social experience by focusing on team activity around content.

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AppleCare+ now covers batteries that drop to 80%

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For anyone concerned about their new Apple device, AppleCare+ protection can sound appealing -- even if it might seem expensive in some instances. Today Apple has updated the terms of AppleCare+ for iPhone, iPad, iPod and Apple Watch giving a better deal for people worried about their batteries.

Previously, the extended warranty only covered batteries that would hold 50 percent charge or less. Now this has been updated so that you can request a free replacement within the coverage period if your device's battery is only able to hold 80 percent of full charge. The new terms do not apply to everyone -- it all depends on when you bought your Apple device.

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Android is the biggest target for mobile malware

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Most of the malicious software for mobile devices targets Google’s Android operating system, a new report by Pulse Secure says.

Last year, almost one million individual malicious apps for Android were released, according to Pulse Secure’s Mobile Threat Report. That means the number of threats quadrupled in comparison to the year before.

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Apple starts to cull apps that feature the Confederate flag from the App Store

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Following the Charleston shootings in which nine people were killed, debate has raged about whether it is reasonable to display the Confederate flag. A symbol of the South for some, a racist throwback for far more, the flag has already been ditched by the likes of eBay and WalMart. Now Apple has started to clear the App Store of apps that feature the rebel flag.

Developers have been contacted by Apple with a warning that their apps are being dropped "because it includes images of the confederate flag used in offensive and mean-spirited ways". While this is clearly the case in some instances, the new policy has also affected Civil War games that include the flag for historical reasons.

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You can now sign up for Facebook Messenger without a Facebook account

Messenger Sign Up iOS

Thanks in no small part to Facebook, Messenger is rapidly growing in popularity. On Google Play, the app reached one billion downloads earlier this month, while on Apple's App Store it leads the free apps chart for iPhones. But while it certainly benefits from being tightly linked to Facebook, the company wants to make it possible to sign up for its messaging service without a Facebook account.

When it announced this change, Facebook did not detail why it is introducing this sign up option. However, it looks like the company wants its messaging service to become more attractive for those who are not willing to join the social network but want to connect with their Facebook friends.

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Transit App: a smarter way to navigate your city

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Finding your way around big cities is generally a challenge, even if you live there. You might know the best bus routes, or have mastered the metro, but you can still be in trouble if a service is unexpectedly cancelled and you're left looking for an alternative.

Transit App is a free Android and iOS app which helps out with a host of tools for planning journeys around and across your local city.

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iOS 9 makes space for updates by deleting apps... and then reinstalling them

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It's only a few weeks since Apple announced some details about iOS 9. One feature that grabbed the attention of many people was Apple's move to address the problem of iOS getting a little fat -- it was announced that iOS 9 will need far less free space to perform an upgrade. But if you are running very short of room, there's a new reason to smile.

The second version of the iOS 9 beta was released to developers today and, as noted by 9to5Mac, Apple's mobile operating system features a great new way to handle devices that are low on space. iOS 9 is now able to temporarily delete apps to free up the necessary megabytes, before reinstalling them when the update is complete.

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Free, ad-supported Google Play Music takes on Apple Music

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Not willing to be upstaged by Apple Music, Google is launching a free version of its Google Play Music service. To make money, the free version of the service will be supported by advertisements -- forget free trials and the prospect of upsetting artists such as Taylor Swift.

The free version of Google Play Music is starting life in the US and Google is pushing the fact that there are curated radio stations to suit whatever mood you find yourself in. The station features the involvement of some of the Songza team and it is possible to home in on a custom radio station based on genre, mood, decade, activity, or similarity to particular artists.

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Lawsuit fights Uber's user location tracking plans

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Uber has faced numerous complaints since its inception in 2010, including suggestions that drivers are not properly vetted. Now the taxi service is facing legal action over plans to track the location of its customers whether the app is running in the foreground or background on their phones.

The new policy is due to come into force on July 15, but the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) has filed a complaint with the FTC saying that the policy change is unfair and should be investigated by the commission. It will be possible to opt out of this location tracking, but EPIC feels this is unreasonable.

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Indie labels 'screwed' by Apple Music free trial deals

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With less than two weeks to go until the launch of Apple Music, a report suggests that the company is having trouble enticing smaller and independent labels into signing up to take part. The problem is not necessarily that there is a lack of interest in joining Apple Music, but that the three month free trial period would generate no income for the labels.

Apple Music will make its money through monthly subscription fees, a percentage of which is then shared with record labels. During the three month free trial, Apple will make no money from the music streaming service, and will therefore have no revenue to share. While this is a cost that larger labels might be in a position to absorb, small companies say it could put them out of business.

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Apple wants bloggers to pay its legal fees

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The launch of Apple News looks set to upset potential publishers if initial reaction to the service's terms and conditions is anything to go by. Bloggers have complained that they have been spammed by Apple with an email inviting them to join the service. Nothing wrong with that (aside from the unsolicited correspondence), you might say, but the problem is, complainants grumble, that acceptance of terms and conditions is assumed unless individuals actively opt out.

Again, this is not entirely unusual, but one of the terms makes for interesting reading. "If we receive a legal claim about your RSS content, we will tell you so that you can resolve the issue, including indemnifying Apple if Apple is included in the claim". But this is not the only clause that has raised the ire of bloggers.

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Will editorial bias blight a curated Apple News?

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There was a lot of Apple news to digest from WWDC last week. As well as the latest versions of OS X and iOS, we witnessed the appearance of women on stage as Apple tried to do its part for diversity. Apple would probably like us to focus on the likes of the Apple Music and Beats One launches, but really it's another announcement that should be foremost in our minds: Apple News.

On the face of it, this is a simple replacement -- perhaps even just a renaming -- for Newsstand, but it's really much more than that. The key difference here is that content will not only come from media partners, but will also be curated. Apple is now a news editor, and that's extremely dangerous.

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