How-to: Use iOS’s Guided Access feature

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iOS devices are built with all users in mind: they come with several accessibility features for low-vision or legally blind users, settings for hard-of-hearing or deaf users, settings for individuals who have physical and motor difficulties, and settings for individuals with learning difficulties.

In this accessibility segment, I will be discussing how to use Guided Access.

Guided Access is an accessibility feature that came out with iOS 6. Guided Access enables you to set up the iOS device so that you cannot leave apps, and you are able to control which features of the app you are allowed to use or not use. There are a lot of great benefits and applications for this (listed in no particular order):

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Square announces new Square Stand hardware for iPad, now available for pre-order

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Square announced a new product called Square Stand for vendors using Square Register for iPad to process payments.

Square Stand features the familiar credit card reader that made Square so popular with smartphone and tablet owners. The stand looks to replace traditional POS cash registers by mounting an iPad in a stylish case that resembles Apple’s iMac desktop computers. Read more

Square announces POS ‘Business in a Box’ hardware package for iPad starting at $299 [video]

Mobile digital payment company Square announced today on its blog that it will begin selling a “Business in a Box” solution that will act as a full point-of-sale system for iPad-toting business owners. The hardware package starts at $299 and includes two Square Readers, a Heckler Design WindFall iPad Stand, and an APG Vasario 1616 Cash Drawer (as pictured above). For an extra $300, bringing the total price of the package to $599, Square will throw in a Star Micronics TSP143L Receipt Printer. We were able to find all the pieces of the package online (minus the free Square readers) for around $480, although that’s before any taxes or shipping costs.

Neighborhood merchants are increasingly adopting Square Register for its simple interface, smart analytics, continuous updates, and low processing fees. With Business in a Box for Square Register, merchants can now simplify their countertop with an affordable and comprehensive package that includes two Square Readers, an iPad stand, a cash drawer, and an optional receipt printer. All work wirelessly with Square Register.

Business owners can learn more about the “Business in a Box” package here. Video of how Almond Surfboards use Square register above.
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Square adds gifts cards/passbook support, Instagram, BBC News, British Airways, Snapheal, VLC Streamer, more

Square Passbook gift cardsSquare Register version 2.5: Square is rolling out Passbook compatible gift cards for local businesses that users of the Square Wallet iPhone app can purchase and share with friends. To welcome the new feature, Square’s Register app also gets an update with the ability to accept the new gift cards via Square Wallet, Passbook, or QR code, as well as iPhone 5 support:

- Accept gift cards for your business from Square Wallet, Passbook and printed QR codes.
- iPhone 5 support and various improvements.

Instagram: Instagram has released a pretty big update to its app this afternoon, adding a revamped camera and camera roll access. Additionally, there are new grids for easy photo taking, new filter access page, and the addition of Foursquare data.

  • Instagram-themed shutter & shutter release button.
  • A preview of the most recent photo on your camera roll.
  • Improved Camera Roll image selector (iPhone 5 only) for quick access to your last photograph.
  • Optional grid guide for live photos and a permanent grid guide for the scale & crop screen.
  • Speed and reliability improvements.

BBC News version 1.7.7: Official iPhone 5 support for the BBC News iOS app:

- iPhone 5 support
- bug fixes

British Airways version 4.0: A big update to the BA iPhone app brings a completely redesigned UI that provides easy access to upcoming flights from the My Flights screen, as well as improvements for retrieving bookings and alternative boarding pass options. The updated app is also now fully iPhone 5 and iOS 6 compatible.

We’ve completely redesigned the app to make it easier to access all your upcoming flights and to address a number of issues

Snapheal version 2.1: Snapheal for Mac received an update today that includes a new and improved UI, a new crop tool, a “new algorithm for image retouch and adjust,” and much more:

- Brand new look and improved user experience, including 1 click to erase objects, faster selection, better way to save and share images, etc.
- New crop tool
- New algorithm for image retouch and adjust: faster performance, better color processing
- Enhanced lasso tool
- Improved algorithms for erasing multiple objects
- New clone&stamp tool, with better customization of brush opacity and softness

Instamac version 1.1: The recently launched Instamac Instagram client for Mac receives a ton of UI refinements, full Retina display support for Retina MacBook Pros, improved slideshow features, and more.

-We’ve spent a lot of time going through each and every user interface element to make Instamac the most elegant Instagram Client for the Mac.

Dungeon Hunter 3 version 1.4.0: Read more

Apps & updates: Sparrow update/sale, Spotify radio, Bento 4 for iPad, Square reward cards, more

Below is our usual list of the most notable app-related news from today, including, among others: new web radio features for Spotify, the release of Bento 4 for iPad, and updates to both the Square Register and Pay With Square iOS apps.

Spotify Version 0.5.2: First, we have an update to the Spotify iOS app that brings a new radio experience to the service. A report from AllThingsD detailed the new web radio service and described it as “more or less mirrors Pandora’s core radio service.” The service would include advertising and offers users the ability to listen free on mobile devices, and it would initially launch for iPad and iPhone with an Android version in development. The iTunes page explained users could now start radio stations based on genres, artists, playlists, and albums, as well as customize their stations “by voting tracks up or down.”

Square Register & Pay with Square: Square updated two of its main iOS app today with new features. The Square Register app now allows merchants to offer reward cards including punch cards for repeat customers and “Visit specials” to attract new customers. On the customer’s side of things, the Pay with Square app was updated with an interface to view and manage the rewards, specials, and punch cards. FastCompany has a nice breakdown of all the new features.

Bento 4 for iPad: Filemaker released Bento 4 for iPad today for the introductory price of $4.99 (goes up to $10 on July 31). It also included a ton of new features, such as: new drag and drop tools, 40 new themes, “Direct Access to the Bento Template Exchange,” and “Form view, Table view, Split view and Full Screen view.” As noted by The Loop, Apple posted Bento 4 as a new app on the App Store, which means owners of previous Bento apps will have to pay for the upgrade.

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