Zac also contributes to 9to5Google.
We shared yesterday that Apple’s newly released fifth developer beta version of iOS 9 adds a new collection of colorful, Retina showcasing default wallpapers for the iPhone. Settling on a new wallpaper, or in this case a whole set of gorgeous imagery, usually mean development on the operating system itself is wrapping up ahead of a public release sometime the following month.
For non-developers and iPhone users not risking stability on their daily driver in favor of new eye candy and features, though, the several week waiting period for iOS 9 to be finalized and released ahead of the new iPhone 6S can make waiting to try those new wallpapers frustrating. To remedy that, we’ve shared downloadable versions of each new wallpaper below so you can sport the iOS 9 look on your iPhone without the occasional bugs that accompany beta versions of iOS: expand full story
Apple is continuing to fine tune the upcoming watchOS update for Apple Watch ahead of the software update’s release this fall, and now registered developers can test their apps against the latest build as watch OS 2 beta 5 is now available.
The watchOS 2 update allows developers to build native (read faster) apps that do not rely as much on the iPhone for processing power, third-party complications or widgets for the watch face, and closer access to hardware like heart rate sensor data and more. For consumers, watchOS 2 adds new features like Nightstand Mode, using photos or albums as a watch face, and various app refinements.
The last watchOS 2 beta notably added support for colored complications including Activity with increased legibility on certain watch faces including Utility and Modular. We’ll explore the latest watchOS 2 beta to find other new changes coming this fall, and let us know if you discover any differences between the last beta as well. expand full story
Update: iOS 9 beta 3 for public beta testers is also available.
Apple today released iOS 9 beta 5 for registered developers testing the new operating system ahead of its release this fall. The latest build comes two weeks and two days after the previous version, which included tweaked icons, the return of Home Sharing support, a new Handoff UI, a cleaner Apple Music experience, and changes to how Apple Pay can be activated on the lock screen. Headlining features in iOS 9 include an overhauled Notes app, transit directions in Maps, multitasking features on iPad, a News app, and much more. As Apple starts to fine tune these releases, changes between each build should slow down. We’ll explore the latest beta for any notable differences, and let us know if you spot any changes as well. expand full story
Apple’s ResearchKit system is going international for the first time since its launch earlier this year with Stanford University’s MyHeart Counts app being made available for UK and Hong Kong iPhone users. The MyHeart Counts app was among the initial iPhone-based research study apps that debuted this year. Stanford said just after the app’s release that ResearchKit did in 24 hours what would ordinarily take 50 medical centers a year to accomplish. expand full story
Apple is now allowing developers to test more iOS 9 features with an update to its beta distribution app TestFlight. The updated version enables developers to test faster, native watchOS 2 apps for Apple Watch, including newly gained access to more sensors and custom watch face complications. The update also lets developers test some iOS 9 features like App Thinning, which allows users to download larger chunks of apps as needed to preserve local storage, for the first time.
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U.S. District Judge Lucy H. Koh today decided to stop a group lawsuit against Apple over undelivered text messages caused by an iMessage bug, Bloomberg reports. The issue drew a lot of attention last year when the bug with Apple’s messaging system caused former iPhone users that switched to Android to discover text messages were not being properly delivered to their phone number. In dismissing the lawsuit, Judge Koh explained that while Apple’s iMessage system may have resulted in lost text messages, their was inadequate evidence that the group faced a “contractual breach or interference” from iMessage… expand full story
Apple and IBM are continuing to develop their partnership first established just over a year ago as IBM announced today a new program to help large enterprises use Macs within their IT infrastructures. IBM’s MobileFirst Managed Mobility Services will allow its commercial clients to integrate Macs in their workplace with IBM supporting the deployment. Interestingly, IBM says it’s able to roll out the new program to commercial clients thanks to its own internal trial that we previously reported. expand full story
Taylor Swift is being featured on the cover of the September issue of Vanity Fair (view the full cover below the fold), and at the center of the interview within the high profile magazine is the pop star’s telling of her recent episode with Apple. Plans to not compensate artists during Apple Music’s three-month free trial period prompted Swift to publish an open letter explaining why her latest album 1989 wouldn’t be available on their new music streaming service. Apple quickly moved to change that policy and Swift’s album was notably highly promoted on Apple Music at launch. In the interview with Vanity Fair, Taylor Swift detailed her exchange with Apple while comparing it to a similar experience with Spotify that had a different outcome… expand full story
Apple has now flipped on support for Apple Pay to more than 40 additional banks and credit unions across the United States. The new banks join a steadily growing list of over 400 institutions across the country with active support for Apple’s mobile payment service. Apple Pay also recently debuted in the UK with 9 of the major banks supported so far. You can find the latest additions of US banks below: expand full story
Apple has released an updated build of iOS 8.4.1 for registered developers to test on iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. iOS 8.4.1 beta 2 features build number 12H318 and comes just over two weeks after the initial beta version.
While the initial beta of iOS 8.4.1 didn’t feature any noticeable changes, the X.X.1 label suggests it is primarily an under-the-hood update to iOS 8.4 without feature or visual changes. iOS 8.4 launched in late June and introduced Apple Music with Beats 1 to the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. expand full story
Apple may hold its annual developers conference and many press events in San Francisco, but the company’s campus is located about an hour southeast of the city in Cupertino. Despite naming its new custom font used on MacBook keyboards, watchOS, iOS 9, and OS X El Capitan after San Francisco, Apple is remaining in Cupertino for its larger Campus 2 currently being developed. But Apple has reportedly picked up some sizable office space in the city’s South Market neighborhood… expand full story
We know the developer behind the popular RSS client Reeder has been working on a version 3.0 update for OS X 10.10 Yosemite as we last saw a teaser in April. Today users get the first chance to try out the redesigned RSS service reader as the first public beta for Reeder 3 has gone live. The updated version sports a user interface designed for Yosemite and beyond, more themes for making reading comfortable, and even a few OS X El Capitan features. Reeder says the new version will be available as a free update to current Reeder 2 customers when it’s completed. expand full story
Apple has published a behind-the-scenes look at Zane Lowe’s Beats 1 studio where Apple Music’s streaming radio station is broadcasted … on Snapchat of all places. Apple snatched up the ‘applemusic’ username on Snapchat earlier this summer, and now the company is using the account to promote its subscription music service and Zane Lowe’s radio show with short videos of the DJ broadcasting. expand full story
Apple’s iPad continues to lead the tablet market, according to new data from IDC, but its marketshare has dropped a few points year-over-year, and the overall market for tablets saw negative growth, based on units shipped globally. That’s according to second quarter 2015 unit shipments and marketshare over the same quarter a year ago, as Apple shipped 10.9 million units versus 13.3 million units during the second quarter of 2014. While the iPad continues to lead in the tablet space, IDC’s data shows Apple’s market share dropping nearly 3 points from 27.7% to 24.5% … expand full story