Picture of phone with Google Messages in front of iPhone

Messaging is no longer Android’s mess, it’s an iPhone problem: Talking RCS with Hiroshi Lockheimer

A few weeks ago, at MWC 2023, I had an opportunity to sit down with Hiroshi Lockheimer, senior vice president of Platforms and Ecosystems at Google, to talk about RCS messaging. While there was not a lot into the future of what Google is planning with Google Messages and RCS as a protocol, I did get a good look into how RCS came to be and how Google sees it.

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How Coldplay worked with fans to make ‘Music of the Spheres’ world tour app more accessible

As it continues its massively-successful Music of the Spheres World Tour across South America, Europe, and the United States, Coldplay has updated its companion tour app with major accessibility improvements. The band, together with its partners at SAP, worked closely with a fan from Mexico who shared her experiences using the app as a blind person.

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Best USB-C and Thunderbolt displays for Mac [New for March]

Best USB-C/Thunderbolt displays for Mac BenQ

USB-C/Thunderbolt display options have really expanded over the last couple of years. While Apple’s Pro Display XDR isn’t the best fit for most Mac users at $5,000+, it also offers the more affordable Studio Display. And there are also lots of solid choices from LG, Samsung, BenQ, and more. Let’s look at the best USB-C/Thunderbolt displays available in the $400-$1,600 range.

Update 3/24/23: BenQ has launched a trio of new 4K USB-C displays at affordable prices.

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Friday’s best deals: HomePod mini hits $67, M2 MacBook Air $150 off, Magic Keyboard Folio $229, more

All of today’s best discounts are now up for grabs as the weekend begins to unfold. All brought to us by 9to5Toys, everything kicks off with a rare chance to save on HomePod mini, which comes in all five colors at $67. The second-best price to date has also arrived on Apple’s M2 MacBook Air, now landing at $150 off. Plus, you can outfit Apple’s new 10th Gen iPad with a Magic Keyboard Folio for its best price of $229. Hit the jump for all that and more in the latest 9to5Toys Lunch Break.

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Tim Cook heads to China to partake in state-sponsored business summit, visits Apple retail store

Apple CEO Tim Cook is in China this weekend, paying a visit to a local Apple Store and attending a state-sponsored “China business summit.” As reported by Bloomberg, Cook is one of very few US executives set to attend the conference, “underscoring the growing delicacy of doing business in China in the current geopolitical climate.”

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iPhone 15 to integrate proximity sensor into the Dynamic Island, could lead to improved Face ID

iPhone 15 usb-c

With the iPhone 15 launch this fall, Apple is expected to bring the Dynamic Island to the entire lineup for the first time. In conjunction with this, the company is also reportedly planning to move the iPhone’s proximity sensor inside the Dynamic Island.

The primary purpose of the proximity sensor is to shut off the screen when a user holds their phone up to their ear. It also plays a role in optimizing the Always-On Display of the iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max.

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Apple TV+ global market share shrinks and platform is overtaken by Paramount+

Apple TV Plus app

Apple TV+ had been slowly gaining market share since its launch in 2019, while platforms like Netflix continue to lose subscribers to smaller streaming services. But the latest research from JustWatch shows that Apple TV+’s global market share shrank last year, which resulted in the platform being overtaken by its competitor Paramount+.

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Here’s how to watch March Madness 2023 on iPhone, Apple TV, and web [U: Sweet 16]

How to watch March Madness 2023 iPhone

Like last year, the 2023 NCAA tournament is being broadcast across multiple networks. Fortunately, you can stream all the games from one place with the NCAA’s app as well as a few other options. Follow along for how to watch March Madness 2023 on iPhone, iPad, Apple TV, the web, plus the full schedule, and more.

Update: The Sweet 16 kicks off tonight, March 23.

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An AirTag allegedly helped the DEA pull off a drug bust, but is that supposed to work?

Find AirTags with low batteries

Apple’s AirTag item trackers have apparently caught the attention of the United States Drug Enforcement Agency. According to a new report from Forbes, the DEA recently used an AirTag to track the movements of a pill press machine, after it was intercepted by border agents.

According to the report, which is based on a search warrant obtained by Forbes, the pill press machine was inside one of two packages from Shanghai, China that border agents intercepted last May. Those border agents called in the DEA, believing the packages were “destined for an illegal narcotics manufacturer.”

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9to5Mac Happy Hour 426: iOS 16.4 features, SiriGPT, Apple TV+ theatrical ambitions

9to5mac happy hour

Benjamin and Zac discuss all the cool features coming in iOS 16.4, and what old macOS habits they’ve carried across to the modern day. Zac gives his thoughts on the Kindle Scribe, and Apple dips its toe into the neural network language model hype train with a new Siri framework hidden in the tvOS beta. Plus, Apple TV+ wants to make a big splash in cinemas with plans for wide theatrical distribution of its original films going forward.

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