Chrome for iOS Now Allows Password Exporting

Password Export in Chrome for iOS

Google has released an update to Chrome for iOS, bringing it up to Chrome 66 and bringing the ability to export your passwords from the mobile browser.  The update is already in the App Store and if you have Chrome for iOS installed on your iPhone or iPad, you likely already have received the update.

The new build brings the mobile browser up to speed with the Android version as well as the desktop versions by basing it on Chrome 66.  The ability to export passwords was actually in the iOS version in Chrome 65 but it had to be enabled through the changing of a flag in the browser.  In this update, it is fully supported and no flag changes are required.

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Apple Pay Support Expands in the United States and Other Countries

Apple Pay

Apple Pay, the tap-to-pay service for retail and app purchases, has expanded the number of partner financial institutions here in the United States as well as  five other countries.  The expansion comes just a few weeks after Brazil iOS users were added to the countries that support the service.

The expansion adds banks here in the United States as well as Canada, China, Italy, Russia, and Spain.  While the list of countries and banks supported by Apple Pay is substantially smaller than its main rival Google Pay, the expansion shows that Apple plans to continue to work with financial institutions and, in some cases, governments, for the service to work in other countries and with more banks.

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Apple Releases Second Beta of MacOS 10.13.5 to Testers

MacOS Icon

Following up on the release of the second beta of iOS 11.4, Apple has released the second beta of the next build of MacOS High Sierra, MacOS 10.13.5.  The update is available to testers who have registered their devices in the Apple beta program.  If you have a registered device, the update should be available to you through the Mac App Store.

Not much is known about what is included in this second beta as Apple tends to not release many details on it.  Given it is a “dot” release, it more-or-less focuses on bug fixes and performance improvements as well as refinements to apps on the platform.  One thing that is known is that MacOS 10.13.5 will bring Message on iCloud which is now also in the afore mentioned second beta of iOS 11.4.

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iOS 11.4 Beta 2 Arrives for Testers With Several Improvements

iOS 11.3 Control Center

The second beta of iOS 11.4 has arrived for testers running their iPhones, bringing several bug fixes along with the new Messages in iCloud.  The beta is only available to those who have registered their devices in the Apple beta program with the official release of the new version expected to be late in May or early June.

The big new feature in this build is Messages in iCloud which returns to the beta program.  It originally showed up in the 11.3 beta program but was dropped and not released as part of that update.  It appears that Apple has been doing their homework and will allow users to enable it.  This will allow for new messages to be sync’d to your iCloud account along with photos and videos which will save space on your iPhone.

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Apple HomePod Struggling for Footing After Pre-Sales Hype

Apple HomePod

While it is far to early to call the Apple HomePod a failure, it is certainly clear that Apple’s take on the smart speaker is struggling to gain ground in the market.  According to a new report at Bloomberg, the company has cut orders of the smart speaker and stores are starting to have inventories of the device pile up as they simply can’t get them sold.

The HomePod has been available for roughly ten weeks now and has managed to land about 10% of the smart speaker market.  That is a distant 3rd behind Amazon Echo (73% of the market) and Google Home (14%).  These figures are according to Slice Intelligence.

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Apple Music is Outpacing Spotify in Monthly Growth Numbers

Apple Music for Android

Apple Music, the subscription music streaming service from the Cupertino company, is doing exceptionally well.  In an exclusive report at Variety, the company shared that the service now has 40 million subscribers world wide.  Perhaps even more of an indicator of the health of the service, it is outpacing Spotify when it comes to month-over-month growth.

Right now Spotify is gaining about 2% each month in new subscribers, which outstanding growth.  But Apple Music is growing at a staggering 5% each month.  The service, like Spotify, is helped by the fact that it works on both Android and iOS phones.

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Like Your Ultra Thin Google Pixelbook? You Can in Part Thank Steve Jobs

Apple Macbook Air

If you like your ultra thin Google Pixelbook or any ultra thin laptop for that matter, you have in part to thank Steve Jobs and Apple.  10 years ago today, Apple introduced the Macbook Air.  It was a radical departure from what laptop design, including Apple themselves, had been to that point.  Sporting a single USB-A port, headphone jack and power connector, the Macbook Air ditched all the conventional things at the time like a DVD drive and spinning hard disks internally.  It also introduced a multi-touch touchpad.

Instead, Apple moved to SSD drives internally and ditched the DVD drive altogether, seeing a future where they simply wouldn’t be needed.  They were right as we know now ten years on but at the time, it was radical thinking.

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Huawei Surpasses Apple as Second Largest Smartphone Brand

Huawei P10

Huawei continues to make huge strides in the smartphone market and their surge over the course of 2017 continues.  Counterpoint, a global technology research firm, has just released their latest Market Pulse for July 2017.  In that report, the Chinese manufacture has jumped over Apple to take the number two position in global smartphone sales percentage.  Perhaps even more impressive in this is the fact that they made this jump without a “hero” device like Apple’s iPhone 7 or Samsung’s Galaxy S8.

Samsung is by far the leader in smartphone sales percentage globally with just over 20%.

The July report from Counterpoint is the fifth consecutive month of gains in market share by Huawei and they have distanced themselves from others in the highly competitive Chinese manufacturing market.  Still, as the report points out, the risk to Huawei is their over dependence of their home market and expansion into Europe and North America will need to happen for them to hold on to that 2nd place solidly.

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