photos January 15

AAPL: 97.13

-2.39
Stock Chart

I’ve been all in on iCloud Photo Library since Apple replaced iPhoto with the new Photos app on the Mac last year and I haven’t looked back since. I pay $2.99/month to sync my 13,206 photos and 1,087 videos (plus iOS device backups) with iCloud, and this allows me to take or save photos and videos from any device and have them appear across the others including the web, edits, albums, and all. I even have a system to help ensure to if something in the cloud gets hosed that everything will be fine at home (and if the house burns down hopefully the cloud is still there).

This also enables me to access my 155 GB photos library in the Photos apps on iPhones and iPads that otherwise couldn’t fit that much content. Thumbnail previews are available at all times, and full resolution versions download on the fly as needed. When you’re iPhone, iPad, or Mac needs more local storage, Photos can remove full-res images and downloaded videos to make more space using an optimize storage option. This works pretty well especially on higher capacity devices, but there’s one problem…

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photos December 15, 2015

AAPL: 110.49

-1.99
Stock Chart

Over the weekend a good friend of mine shared a screenshot of a really scary error message from Photos for Mac. Every photo and video taken over the last two weeks failed to open, saying instead that ‘An error occurred while downloading a larger version of this video for editing.’ The solution? ‘Please try again later.’ and press OK. What’s worse is he was relying on the app’s Optimize Mac Storage setting to fit the library on his local storage and trusting iCloud not to screw things up along the way. And he didn’t have local copies backed up, a mistake he for obvious reasons regretted.

Stories like these aren’t rare, which is why my colleague Jeremy wrote earlier this year that “iCloud Photo Library still isn’t worth the hassles,” despite Apple lowering iCloud storage costs. But I still recommend Photos and iCloud Photo Library, new features that topped my “favorite new Apple things from 2015 that will last for years” list, just not with the default setup. As with any cloud service, the one major caveat is ensure you have a reliable local backup (followed by plenty of patience at the start).

While there’s no turning back data loss, I shared my personal Photos plus iCloud Photo Library setup with my friend, which he’s moving to now for a hopefully better experience. Below I’ll detail each step, which required a little research before I figured it all out, so you can hopefully have a positive experience with Photos and iCloud Photo Library as well.

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photos December 11, 2015

AAPL: 113.18

-2.99
Stock Chart

A few weeks ago Google unveiled a new space saver feature for its Photos app on Android, and this week the best feature 16GB iPhones and iPads could wish for is now available on iOS. Google Photos has also added Shared Albums across iOS, Android, and the web, which makes sending pictures and videos you capture to friends and family super easy. expand full story

9to5toys 

photos December 9, 2015

AAPL: 115.62

-2.61
Stock Chart

Aurora HDR, the Mac App Store Editors’ Choice-winning high-dynamic range (HDR) photography tool, is receiving significant updates ahead of the holidays. Released last month by Macphun and leading HDR photographer Trey Ratcliff, Aurora HDR automatically and intelligently merges multiple exposures of an image together, radically expanding details in light, shadowed, and colorful portions of the photo. It comes in basic (regularly $49.99) and Pro ($99) versions, the latter with a free trial.

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photos December 7, 2015

AAPL: 118.28

-0.75
Stock Chart

Spoiler: I like these, but they’re not my picks

2015 proved to be a gigantic year for Apple in terms of shipping totally new products and seeing services go live for the first time. Apple Watch is a brand new category for the iPhone maker, the new Apple TV delivers on long-awaited update to the streaming box, and iPad Pro is every bit the giant tablet that was rumored for so long. My two absolute favorite new things from Apple this year, however, aren’t new hardware products but instead two services that have been criticized but have made a meaningful difference in my everyday life… expand full story

photos November 25, 2015

AAPL: 118.03

-0.85
Stock Chart

Not too long after the first rumors surfaced, Apple has given its usual non-confirmation that it has acquired Faceshift, the company behind the technology Star Wars used to animate the faces of CGI characters. It’s not an obvious fit for Apple, so what could be the thinking behind the purchase?

Like Apple’s patents, it is sometimes easy, I think, to read too much into some of the company’s acquisitions. Sure, it doesn’t go around acquiring companies randomly, but it may not always be after the complete package. It may well be that there is some small element of the company’s technology that Apple wants, or it may be an acquihire – where it’s the engineers rather than the specific tech the company wants.

But in this particular case, there is reason to suspect that Apple does have an interest in the broad brush-strokes of what Faceshift does …  expand full story

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