IDC released an updated forecast today lowering its expectations for worldwide smartphone shipments this year with a continuing slowdown in growth in China cited as the biggest contributor to the lower than expected shipments. It also shared some insight into expected growth for Apple in the years to come, predicting Android’s current 81% share of the market by operating system will likely hold strong through 2019 and that a cheaper iPhone 6C model wouldn’t do much to help. expand full story
Last week, we reported that Apple is preparing to launch a couple of significant changes for Apple Retail stores this upcoming Wednesday. Besides demoting iPods to the accessory shelves on the sides of Apple Stores, Apple will be removing the long-existing iPad-based Smart Signs. These are the iPads that sit alongside iPhones, iPads, and Macs in the stores explaining pricing and other pertinent information. Now, we’ve gathered a few more details. First, sources say that this will be a change across all Apple Stores across the globe, not just stores in the United States. More significantly, we now know what will replace the Smart Sign functionality: new dedicated pricing apps on both in-store Macs and iOS devices…
A nice update is awaiting 1Password users on iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch today as the password management app has enhanced a few key parts of the experience. On the iPhone 5s and later plus iPad min 3/iPad Air 2, 1Password’s login screen now features a Touch ID button under the Master Password field so you can choose to sign in using your finger print even if you accidentally hit cancel on the first request. Tapping the fingerprint button prompts the system Touch ID unlock screen.
Also useful for Touch ID users on iOS is an improvement to how the app can stay unlocked between uses in different apps. Previously 1Password’s extension in other apps required being unlocked by password, passcode, or Touch ID each time, but now the 1Password extension and 1Password app share the same unlock time limits. This makes relying on 1Password to enter passwords in the many of supported apps including Safari a faster experience if security is a lower priority.
Finally, 1Password has enhanced its Apple Watch app with the usual bug fixes that give you a better experience, and credit cards saved to the Apple Watch app now include the important PIN codes that 1Password can save. 1Password’s Apple Watch app lets you selectively sync important passwords to the app with an optional added passcode over the app. You can find the full release notes below: expand full story
The highly popular WhatsApp messaging service owned by Facebook appears to be adding a new feature that allows iPhone users to chat in the browser using a web app. The feature is called WhatsApp Web and became available on various platforms including Android and Windows Phone earlier this year, but the feature was absent for iPhone users at the time “due to Apple platform limitations.” Using the chat service on the web requires running WhatsApp on a corresponding smartphone. expand full story
Most large companies have employee directories on their intranet, and most of them have two things in common: the database entries are typically out of date, and the subpar search functionality justsucks. Professional social network LinkedIn hopes its new Lookup app, launching today, will solve this problem – allowing you to search for people in your own company even if you’re not connected to them on LinkedIn.
Its primary selling-point is that it lets you search by skill or area of expertise, to help make contact with co-workers who might be able to help out with a project … expand full story
Earlier this month SwiftKey for iOS gained a new emoji insight feature called “My Signature Emoji,” and now the company is further expanding on its emoji insight offerings. The company announced today that it is rolling out two new emoji insight features to users of its app, called “My Top Emoji” and “Emoji State.”
It’s been many years since Steve Jobs famously told biographer Walter Isaacson that he’d “cracked TV” – an integrated television set with “the simplest user interface you could possibly imagine.” That idea seemingly went nowhere, with plans for a full TV set reportedly abandoned back in 2014.
So far, then, Apple’s offering in the TV space has been a rather modest one: the venerable ‘black puck’ that is the Apple TV box. The company keeps updating it, of course. Movie rentals were a big deal for some, Photostream for others. But for most, the last really dramatic change was the addition of AirPlay. Since then, improvements have been evolutionary rather than revolutionary.
All that looked set to change next month, with Apple initially expected to launch the next best thing to a full television set: significantly upgraded hardware coupled to a new streaming TV service. The complete package would undoubtedly have proven a winner. But with the streaming service now delayed until sometime next year, will a revamped box alone be enough to significantly boost sales, or will most be holding out until the Internet TV service is launched … ? expand full story
Nuance, the voice recognition and productivity software company behind the iOS keyboard’s Dictation feature, today has revealed a series of updates to its applications and a new cloud-based synchronization service at the core. Nuance provided us with a demonstration last week of the new iOS and Mac apps, and we came away impressed with the accuracy, speed, and capabilities of the upgraded platform.
Apple plans to hold one of its annual fall media events on Wednesday, September 9th to introduce the new iPhone 6S and iPhone 6S Plus with Force Touch, and after many fits and starts, it appears that the long-awaited next-generation Apple TV will also be unveiled. We’ve been reporting on this upcoming model since 2014, as Apple has been planning to update its set-top-box with support for an App Store for quite some time.
Earlier this year, Apple had locked in a June WWDC debut for both the new Apple TV hardware and software upgrades, but the company ultimately decided to delay the introduction until the fall. While some had speculated that the announcement was pushed back due to a lack of content deals, we are told that the delay was internally attributed to a concern over compromising iOS 9 engineering resources, as the latest OS release is focused at least as much on polish as on new features.
Why would the new Apple TV potentially take away resources from iOS 9? According to sources, this new Apple TV model, codenamed J34, will be the first model to run a full-blown iOS core. Specifically, the new Apple TV operating system will be a TV-optimized version of iOS 9. In addition to the new hardware inside, running iOS 9 will give the new Apple TV a series of benefits over the current model. Below, we explore what users can expect from Apple’s next-generation living room product.
Update: Apple appears to have now disabled external testing in iTunes Connect again after briefly enabling it this afternoon.
External Testing is disabled in iTunes Connect again. Seems like it was a bug. http://t.co/qr4bnKAIRw—
Amit Nivedan Kalra (@AMITNKALRA) August 14, 2015
When Apple updated the TestFlight app for iOS 9 compatiblity earlier this month, it came with the caveat that developers could only submit iOS 9 betas to members of their own teams. Today, however, the company has enabled external testing, allowing developers to start pushing iOS 9-ready betas to any users.
Apple has released an official iOS update for all users with iOS 8.4.1 now available. The update follows the major iOS 8.4 release which included an all-new Music app with Apple Music, the new subscription music service, plus Beats 1, Apple’s Internet-based radio station with live DJs. Apple initially started testing the changes in iOS 8.4.1 with developers in mid-July. The maintenance update includes several issue fixes for Apple Music and Beats 1. expand full story
Google today has started rolling out an update to its iOS app for iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad. The update, the first significant update to come to the app in some amount of time, bumps it to version 7.0 and includes a handful of notable new features.
Flight tracking apps have been popular on iOS for as long as the platform had the App Store, and this fall Apple is baking a key function of those apps right into the operating system. A little known feature called ‘flights data detector’ is included in both iOS 9 and OS X El Capitan but was not highlighted on stage during Apple’s WWDC keynote. As one Reddit user highlighted, the feature lets iOS automatically detect when text is referencing a flight and allows users to actually check on the flight’s status and progress with an attractive interface. Here’s how it works on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac… expand full story
Along with the recent release of iOS 9 beta 5, a recent report suggests the new iPhone and Apple TV could be announced in early September. Along with that, Apple announces massive numbers for its streaming music service and Google has completely restructured the company. The Happy Hour podcast is available for download on iTunes and through our dedicated RSS feed.
The rollout, which starts Wednesday, includes 460 stations owned and operated by stakeholder Atlanta-based Cumulus Media Inc [including] long-running stations such as Cumulus’ KLOS-FM (95.5) in Los Angeles and KFOG-FM (104.5) in San Francisco, along with talk radio and sports outlets …