Category: iOS

Revamped Google News App Released With Fresh UI and Content

Confirming a rumor from last week prior to Google I/O, the Mountain View company pulled back the curtains on the all new Google News app and service yesterday at the event.  The new look site and app brings an significantly updated, more Material Design look to the apps while also bringing more visual and video content along with it.

Along with the updated look, there is now a Newsstand tab in the app which brings in magazine and online content subscriptions to the app.  With that, it spells the end of the Google Play Newsstand app.

iOS 11.4 to Bring a Lockdown of Lightening Connection to Charging Only Without Passcodes

It appears that once again Apple is upping device security with the upcoming release of iOS 11.4.  In a new report on Elcomsoft indicates that when the new build of iOS rolls out, it will come with a Lightening Connection lockdown that requires the device to unlocked or the password/fingerprint to be entered every seven days.  The feature is meant to prevent tethering a device to a PC or Mac and brute force cracking the device to gain access.

The feature first appeared in iOS 11.3 but was dropped during the beta testing.  It reappeared in 11.4 and, to this point, has pretty much gone unnoticed until now.  What this means is after 7 days, if the device hasn’t been unlocked either with biometrics or a password, the Lightening connector becomes a charging port only.  No data is transmitted to or from the device by the connected laptop.

Gmail for iOS Update Brings Mail Snoozing and Sending Money With Google Pay

Gmail for iOS has a new update rolling out in the App Store, bringing with it two key new features in tow.  The new build, version 5.0.180422 for those keeping score at home, brings the ability to snooze emails along with sending money to contacts via Google Pay.

The ability to snooze emails is a new feature to Gmail in general, having arrived in the new user experience for the mail service online as well as in the Android app.  It allows you to select a day and time when you want to respond to an email.

Apple To Require Apps Built With The iOS 11 SDK and iPhone X Display Support Starting in July

Apple has posted an update to developers of iOS that requires them to use the iOS 11 SDK and to support the display of the iPhone X.  The policy change goes into effect in July and any apps submitted or app updates submitted must comply with the new policy or they will be rejected.

The requirement for using the iOS 11 SDK is not a surprise.  It has been available since September of last year and Apple likes to make sure that apps, just like iPhones and iPads, are up-to-date.  Part of that SDK is supporting the Super Retina Display of the iPhone X, including its notch.  That is now required too.

Fourth iOS 11.4 Beta Released to Testers

A week after the third beta of iOS 11.4 was released, a fourth new beta of the next update to Apple’s mobile platform has been released to testers.  For those who have a device registered in the Apple Beta Program, you should see the update as available to download to your compatible device.

The beta released today is a bit of a surprise given Apple usually spaces out their updates several weeks during beta testing.  The quick release likely indicates that an issue was discovered and needed to be patched quickly but Apple has not confirmed this fact.

Microsoft Launcher for Android To Get Windows 10 Timeline Support

Over the course of the past couple of years it has been clear that Microsoft’s mobile strategy is developing apps for Google’s Android and Apple’s iOS.  This isn’t a bad strategy overall and it is clear from presentations this week at Build, Microsoft’s developer conference, that they are continuing that strategy.

One of the more exciting announcements on the first day of the conference is Windows 10’s new Timeline feature making it to both Android and iOS.  For Android users, access to Timeline will come via Microsoft Launcher while iOS users will have access to via Microsoft Edge.

Apple HomePod Set to Gain Calendar Access When iOS 11.4 is Released

It looks like the Apple HomePod is about to get a much needed feature:  Calendar access.  Right now HomePod isn’t able to access your calendar.  It can access your Messages, Reminders and Notes, which is handy but having calendar access is key to increasing the productivity of users of the smart speaker.  It looks like it is going to be changing pretty soon.

In the 3rd beta of iOS 11.4, when you go through the process of setting up an Apple HomePod, you now will see an icon for Calendar along with Messages, Reminders and Notes.  It is the strongest indication yet that calendar support is coming – although Apple hasn’t said anything on the topic to date.

iOS 13 Rumored to Have Several iPad-Focused Feature Updates

While iOS 12 is on the horizon for 2018, attention is already starting to turn to iOS 13 which is slated for 2019.  That attention is being fueled by rumors about the update coming in 2019 and it looks like it is going to be heavily focused on the iPad.

Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman tweeted on Friday about some of the things that we can expect in “Yukon”, the codename for iOS 13.

While the tweet and rumors are still somewhat generic in nature, it does align with previous rumors that there would be a heavy focus on the iPad in v13.

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