Apple reportedly reverses decision on rejecting iOS 8 calculator widgets

Notification Center widgets in Today view

Update: Thompson has verified the policy change.

We learned yesterday from developer James Thompson that Apple had informed him that the calculator widget for his app PCalc, which had already been approved and even featured by the App Store, would have to remove the widget from the app to remain available for sale. The reason Apple gave, according to Thompson’s tweets, is that “widgets on iOS cannot perform any calculations” which his PCalc calculator widget obviously did, but it seems Apple has since reversed that decision, according to iMore and TechCrunch. TC reports that an Apple spokesperson has confirmed that PCalc’s widget can now remain as well as any other similar calculator widgets. Read more

Apple making iOS 8 Notification Center a bit less useful by banning calculator widgets

Pcalc-today-widgetDeveloper James Thomson of popular calculator app PCalc announced today via his Twitter account that Apple is forcing him to remove the app’s Today Widget due to a restriction that iOS widgets “cannot perform any calculations.”

Apple’s new Today Widgets feature in iOS 8, which allows developers to build functions into the system-wide Notification Center, does have some limitations that Apple outlines in developer documentation. For example, Apple encourages developers not to use Today Widgets for multistep tasks: If you want to create an app extension that enables a multistep task or helps users perform a lengthy task, such as uploading or downloading content, the Today extension point is not the right choice.” There doesn’t, however, appear to be specific references to apps that perform calculations in Apple’s developer guidelines. Read more

iHeartRadio iPhone app updated w/ CarPlay support & Today widget

iHeartRadio CarPlayiHeartRadio, the Internet radio streaming app, is out with a new version for iPhone today adding a couple of new features for listeners. First up is support for Apple’s CarPlay feature for CarPlay-equipped vehicles. This presents an optimized version of the iPhone app on CarPlay equipped cars’ built-in screens when connected to the iPhone making it easier to navigate and control the app when driving.

Apple has mentioned that iHeartRadio is a supported CarPlay app since the re-branded feature was introduced earlier this year, but support was not yet available when we reviewed CarPlay in an aftermarket Pioneer display last month. iHeartRadio brings a wide variety of content to CarPlay with stations ranging from talk radio to sports to various music genres, and traditional AM/FM stations with online streams can be accessed through CarPlay using the new iHeartRadio app for iPhone. Read more

Fantastical for iOS updated w/ Today view widget, extension, interactive notifications

Fantastical for iPhone and iPad, the alternative calendar and Reminders app from Flexibits, received a major feature update today for iOS 8 users. If you’re unfamiliar with Fantastical, the ability to turn text input like “Dinner with Tim tomorrow night at 7pm” into a calendar appointment without fiddling with menus and dials is it’s killer feature.

Fantastical for iPhone received an update last month which optimized the user interface for iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus users, and today’s new version adds a Today view widget in Notification Center, an app extension for use in other apps, and interactive notifications for responding to alerts without even opening the app. Check out the new features in the latest version of Fantastical for iPhone and iPad below. Read more

iOS 8.1 Jailbreak hits the web via Chinese Pangu team, but it’s Cydia-less and only to developers for now (Updated)

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It wasn’t too long ago when the Pangu jailbreak team took the scene by storm with it’s iOS 7.1.x jailbreak tool release. It was quite unexpected because no on had really heard of Pangu prior to the surprise. Turns out the team was very talented and they’re all set to reach another milestone…

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Yosemite & iOS 8 How-to: Send and receive phone calls from your Mac and iPad

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Now that Yosemite is out, with iOS 8 running on your iPhone, you can send and receive phone calls from your Mac and your iPad (also running iOS 8). This is one of the features of Continuity, which further integrates and connects your Mac and iOS devices. Continuity also includes Handoff, Instant Hotspot, AirDrop and SMS Relay (as part of the iOS 8.1 update).

Sending and receiving phone calls from the Mac and iPad is a benefit because sometimes when your iPhone rings it’s not where you are, but instead you are on your Mac or iPad. Now you can pick up the phone call directly from the Mac or iPad and don’t have to worry about stopping what you are doing to rush and find the phone. In this how-to article I will discuss how to set up and disable Phone Relay, how to send and receive iPhone Cellular Calls.

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Yosemite & iOS 8 How-to: Set up and use Handoff

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Now that Yosemite is out, with iOS 8 devices you are now able to use Handoff. Handoff will allow you to seamlessly start a task on one device, and pick it up on another device. So for example you start writing a paper on your iPad and then you want to continue it on your Mac, or you start writing an email on your iPhone and want to finish it on your iPad, this is what Handoff does. When signed into the same iCloud account and Bluetooth is turned on, Handoff will allow you to transition your work flow from one device to another.

On the Mac, you will have an additional dock separate from the main dock indicating what is running on the iOS device. On the iOS device on the lock screen you will have an icon indicating the app that is being used on the Mac. Currently it works with Apple’s apps including Mail, Contacts, Calendar, Safari, Reminders, Messages, Maps, Pages, Numbers and Keynote. Developers can also add Handoff to their apps as Things and other apps have already done. In this how-to article, I will discuss how to set up Handoff and how to use it.

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iOS 8.1 will include Apple Pay, iCloud Photo Library in public beta, more improvements

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During today’s Apple event, Apple SVP of Software Craig Federighi mentioned iOS 8.1 as well as a few changes coming with the software update to iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. With iOS 8.1, Apple will introduce Apple Pay for iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. The update will also include the public beta of iCloud Photo Library for every user; currently, the feature has been available to limited users since iOS 8’s public launch. Finally, Apple says iOS 8.1 will bring back the Camera Roll for users following customer feedback. Read more

Apple adding ability to track what you do inside retail apps to serve targeted advertising

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Apple is reportedly adding the ability to track what users do inside certain apps in order to present them with targeted in-app ads across iOS devices, reports digital media site Digiday.

Say, for example, a visitor to a retailer’s iPhone app adds a pair of shoes to his cart but ultimately decide not to buy it. In this scenario, the retailer will now be able to retarget that user with an ad for that exact pair — even in another app on his iPad. When tapped, the ad would direct him back to his abandoned checkout page and automatically add the shoes to his online shopping cart.

Ad agencies say that Apple has been pitching the new capability since last month …
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Fitbit says it has no current plans for iOS 8 Health app integration

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Fitbit, makers of popular fitness tracking wearables and apps, has confirmed it currently has no plans to support Apple’s new iOS 8 Health app. After a bit of a delayed launch last month, a long list of developers have rushed to integrate support for HealthKit, Apple’s new frameworks that allow developers to share and tap into data from one central location on the user’s device: the new Health app in iOS 8. Fitbit, however, has confirmed in a few responses on its customer forums that it isn’t working on integration much to the frustration of its users that have been awaiting an update: Read more

iOS 8 adoption lagging significantly behind iOS 7, but iPhone 6 uptake is about double its predecessors

Screen Shot 2014-10-06 at 10.26.31Within the first twenty-four hours, iOS 8 update appeared to be slower than its predecessors.  A few weeks in, this continues to be the case says analytics firm Fiksu.

After twelve days, both iOS 6 and iOS 7 had comfortably crossed the 50% mark for iOS usage. By contrast, iOS 8 is yet to hit the 40% mark according to Fiksu’s measurements. An independent study from Mixpanel says iOS 8 is closer to 50%, but it is still far behind iOS 7’s rate of uptake.

At least, iOS 8 is ahead of iOS 5 in terms of usage, which should be expected given that iOS 4 users wanting to upgrade to iOS 5 had to plug in to iTunes to update. Since that change, both iOS 6 and iOS 7’s upgrade rates were almost double that of iOS 5. For reasons not fully known, iOS 8 currently sits about halfway between these two.

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