June 4, 2012
Come this fall, people will start talking to their iPads. Apple’s breakthrough Siri Assistant, based on an incredible artificial-intelligence system, will no longer be exclusive to users of the popular iPhone 4S. According to trusted sources, one of the tentpole iOS 6 features is Siri support on the iPad. Not just the Voice Dictation brought to the iPad with the third-generation models and iOS 5.1, but the complete Siri voice assistant.
Siri, the software we first detailed for the iPhone in September of last year, brings all of its iPhone 4S features to the iPad, except for the phone-related commands. Music playback, iMessaging, Calendar managing, Reminders, Weather, Maps integration, E-mailing, Notes, Contacts searching, Safari integration, Wolfram-Alpha searching, and more are all present.
With the iPad being a device that is larger than the iPhone, the product typically sits farther away from the user’s mouth. Because of this, some speculators of Siri for iPad have believed that the device’s microphone would be unable to properly hear, and therefore incorrectly interpret, command inputs. Sources, however, dismissed this as nonsense, and these sources say that commands input with same or similar accuracy to the iPhone 4S. iPad voice dictation appears to work well for third-generation iPad users.
Unlike on the iPhone 4S, Siri for iPad is not a full screen experience. This makes sense given the device’s larger, 9.7-inch display. Siri on the iPad is activated by a quick hold of the home button, just like on the iPhone 4S. The interface slides up from below the display with a clever animation. Siri is built into the iPad as a small window on top of whatever interface the user is currently interacting with. This Siri window with rounded corners sits at the bottom center of the display, as you can see in our mockup above. The Siri iPad interface takes very little space over the iPad interface currently in use, and is designed with the same linen texture as on the iPhone 4S. Siri for iPad also works from the lock screen.
More details after the break…
Apple’s upcoming release of OS X Mountain Lion takes several features from iOS 5, but also introduces the world to some new features that are also coming to iOS 6. According to trusted sources, iOS 6 will include iCloud Tabs support, Mail VIPs, and a simple, yet handy and so-far praised Notification Center enhancement.
iCloud Tabs is a feature that allows iCloud users to view a list of tabs opened in the Safari web browser across multiple iOS devices and Macs. Although previously rumored, iCloud Tabs is not a feature – in its initial implementation in iOS 6 and Mountain Lion – that syncs your entire current web browser work across devices. When the iCloud Tabs button is clicked on an iOS 6 device (or Mac), all the tabs opened on each device are simply shown in a synchronized list. From here, users can quickly pickup individual tabs that they were working on across their Apple devices. The iCloud Tabs button on the iPhone and iPod touch is hidden behind the Bookmarks toolbar.
Another subtle, yet much requested, feature from Mountain Lion is Mail VIPs. Like in Mountain Lion, Mail VIPs in iOS 6 puts a star next to emails received from a specified group of people. VIPs assigned to iCloud accounts will sync with iCloud across iOS 6 iPads, iPhones, iPod touches, and OS X Mountain Lion Macs. OS X Mountain Lion users have so-far praised the feature, as many users find themselves constantly looking for email from a select group of contacts.
More details after the break…
A few days ago, TechCrunch reported that Facebook will be integrated into iOS 6 in some fashion. This is not a major surprise given Apple CEO Tim Cook’s hint at the AllThingsD D10 Conference of iOS Facebook integration. We heard many weeks ago that Apple and Facebook engineers were working in collaboration on implementing some sort of integration of Facebook into iOS 6. Simultaneously, Apple and Facebook executives were discussing the terms of the deal and exactly how Facebook would be integrated into iOS 6. While we knew that some sort of integration was incoming, we have been waiting to learn the exact spots in which integration is present, something that has up in the air due to the agreement talks just recently coming to a close. The thought of Facebook integration into iOS is a dubious one itself, given that the two tech leaders talks of integration into iOS 4 and Ping both abruptly fell apart.
According to sources familiar with the Facebook integration into iOS 6, the integration will be very similar to Twitter’s integration that launched with iOS 5. The integration’s biggest presence will be in the iOS Photos application. Like you are able to send photos to Twitter from the Photos application, you will be able to post photos to Facebook. A single sign-on section for all Facebook connected applications is present in the iOS 6 system settings application. Like with Twitter, a new “social sheet,” as some people familiar with the matter call it, will appear for an accompanying status message.
More details after the break…
June 3, 2012
Do you remember all of those ports you used to see on Macs? DVI, Gig Ethernet (har), and separate analog stereo for in and out? Matrox, a company that used to make mad graphics cards and other video devices, is coming to DubDub with a new $249 piece of kit called the “DS-1.” This box brings you all of those old school ports and even throws in a “superspeed” USB 3.0 port, so you can match the speed of the new MacBooks.
Matrox makes a bunch of other highly rated, high-end Thunderbolt breakout boxes that retail for much more. If you are looking for a (relatively) cheap Thunderbolt dock to hide away from sight and hook up to an old DVI monitor, this may be a good pick up. We should have a review unit to play with next week.
The press release follows: expand full story