Category Archives: Apple Watch

iPhone Supercycle, Live Photos API, Guardian drops Apple News, Message stickers, Overcast on Watch

Data suggests tens of millions of iPhone users ready to fuel 2017 ‘supercycle’ — Lending credence to speculation of a coming iPhone ‘supercycle,’ market research firm comScore on Thursday released data showing tens of millions of users who own legacy iPhones are primed to upgrade. [So expect long waits when you’re ready to upgrade …]

Apple debuts Live Photos API, allows for playback on most popular browsers — Apple has developed a JavaScript API for its Live Photos, allowing pictures taken with the iOS feature to be shared on the web.

UK site The Guardian drops Apple News in bid to boost ad & subscription revenues — Prominent UK newspaper The Guardian has pulled out of two major app-based initiatives, Apple News and Facebook Instant Articles, in a bid to reclaim revenue.

Apple’s 2017 Earth Day Challenge for Apple Watch awards iMessage Stickers — In recognition of today’s Earth Day, Apple created Earth Day Challenge to reward reaching 30 minutes of exercise on the day with a special achievement badge in the Activity app, as well as stickers for use within iMessage. [Do people actually get excited about stickers? I looked at them when they first appeared, and never again.]

Overcast 3.1 update puts podcasts directly on Apple Watch — Popular iOS podcast app Overcast has updated with the ability to sync episodes directly to an Apple Watch, letting runners and others leave home without an iPhone in tow.

iPhone trends, Apple chips, Qualcomm slap, suing Swatch

(Image from GearMix)

US teen iPhone ownership hits all-time high, interest in Apple Watch ticks up — Apple’s mobile products continue to rise in popularity amongst US teens, as fresh survey data from Piper Jaffray shows more than three out of every four teens now own an iPhone and even more intend to buy. Meanwhile TrendForce reckons iPhone production volume is down, but overall sales are improving.

‘Strong evidence’ Apple working on custom power chips for 2019 iPhones — Apple is likely developing custom power management chips, working on the technology at facilities in Germany and the US, an analyst said on Tuesday, believing Apple is setting up power-management design centers in Munich and California. Bankhaus Lampe’s Karsten Iltgen further claims that “about 80” Apple engineers are already working on a custom chip, with plans to use it in iPhones “as early as 2019.”

Qualcomm slaps Apple with countersuit over patent royalties, claims unspecified damages — Responding to a volley of patent royalty lawsuits initiated by Apple, Qualcomm on Monday escalated the legal battle with a countersuit claiming the litigation is a gambit seeking lower licensing fees. Qualcomm is citing 35 specific defenses to Apple’s allegations.

Apple sues Swatch over ‘Tick different’ trademark — Swiss watch conglomerate Swatch is again under fire for allegedly capitalising on successful Apple marketing. The watchmaker is being taken to court for emblazoning ‘Tick different’ on certain watch models, a phrase Apple claims is a play on its 1990s ‘Think Different’ ad campaign.
Lodged last week, Apple’s complaint is being adjudicated by the Swiss Federal Administrative Court, reports Watson. In order to successfully argue its case, Apple will have to prove that at least 50 percent of consumers associate “Think Different” with Apple branding. [Unlikely – Apple’s slogan was popular when Apple had a tiny following compared to today.]

New iPad! Product RED iPhone 7, new silicone cases, SE gets doubles storage, new Clips app, Swift in more languages

(Image from Apple Inc)

New 9.7-inch iPad features stunning Retina Display better — Apple has today updated its most popular-sized iPad. It has a brighter 9.7-inch Retina display and best-in-class performance at its most affordable price ever, starting at recommended retail price NZ$529 inc gst.
• iPad comes in silver, gold and space grey and starts at recommended retail price (RRP) NZ$539 inc. GST for the 32GB with Wi-Fi model and RRP NZ$759 inc. GST for the 32GB Wi-Fi + Cellular model at For more information, please visit
• iPad is available to order beginning Friday, 24 March from and starts delivering to customers and arriving next week through select carriers and Apple Authorised Resellers (prices may vary) in New Zealand and more than 20 other countries and regions.
• Polyurethane Smart Covers for iPad are available for RRP NZ$69 inc. GST in charcoal grey, white, midnight blue, pink sand and (RED) at
• iPad mini 4, available in silver, gold and space grey, now offers more capacity for starting at RRP NZ$659 inc. GST for the 128GB Wi-Fi model and RRP NZ$879 inc. GST for the 128GB Wi-Fi + Cellular model at
• Every customer who buys iPad from Apple will be offered free Personal Setup online5, to help them customise their iPad by setting up email, showing them new apps from the App Store and more.
[Just to be clear, this is a new iPad, not a new iPad Pro or iPad mini. But this also means Apple has discontinued the iPad Air and iPad mini 2. The new iPad replaces the Air 2 and iPad and offers a newer processor along with lower pricing.]

(Image from Apple online)

Apple adds a (PRODUCT)RED iPhone 7 to the iPhone 7 lineup — Along with new iPad models, Apple introduced a (PRODUCT)RED version of the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus today. The new models are called (PRODUCT)RED Special Edition and are available in 128 GB and 256 GB capacities.
iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus (PRODUCT)RED Special Edition will be available in 128GB and 256GB models starting at Recommended Retail Price (RRP) NZ$1399 inc. GST from and from Apple Authorised Resellers and select carriers (prices may vary). The special edition (PRODUCT)RED iPhone joins iPhone 7 finishes in jet black, black, silver, gold and rose gold.

Apple updates iPhone 7 silicone & leather cases with new colours — In tandem with its new (Product)Red iPhone 7 models, and new seasonal band colours for Apple Watch, Apple has also released silicone and leather cases in a small collection of new colours.
The new silicone cases come in azure, camellia and pebble.
The leather cases include sapphire, taupe [bletch! Every bloody new house in Auckland is this godforsaken colour! LOL, sorry] and berry options.

Apple’s iPhone SE doubles its storage options — Apple is now offering the entry-level iPhone SE with 32GB of storage for the same price it ran for the 16GB model and 128GB for the same price as the 64GB model. That’s double the previous storage for the same prices and heralds the end of the road for 16GB iPhones. [That last link also has a clip showing you how to gain space back on your iPhone.]

Apple targets social media crowd with new Clips app — Apple teased a new video capture and editing app called Clips today that targets social media app users. The app lets users snap videos, apply effects and edits and upload their creations to popular social networks and video sharing sites.
Clips includes video filters, background posters, stickers, animations, and titles that can be added during recording or later when editing. Video can be captured in the app, or you can use videos you previously recorded and stored in Photos.
The app will be free, and available in April.

Rugged case for schools — Logitech has already introduced a case, add-on keyboard for the new 9.7-inch iPad. The Logitech Rugged Combo, Logitech Rugged Case and Logitech Add-on Keyboard for Rugged Case is for Apple’s new, just-announced 9.7-inch iPad.

Swift Playgrounds available in five additional languages — Apple’s Swift Playgrounds for the iPad is now available in five new languages: Simplified Chinese, Japanese, French, German and Latin American Spanish.

Online Store offline tomorrow, Duet iPad Touch Bar, iPhone 8 and Services, China slipping, pregnancy kit

Duet lets you use an iPad as a Touch Bar on any Mac

Apple’s online store will be in ‘maintenance mode’ Tuesday morning, fueling talk of new products — New iPads tomorrow, perhaps? Apple has updated its System Status page, noting that its online store will be “updated and unavailable” for “maintenance” tomorrow, Tuesday, March 21, between midnight and 5:30 a.m. (US Pacific Time – this is tomorrow for New Zealanders, please note, as we’re already on Tuesday 21st over here).

Turn any Mac into a Touch Bar by plugging in Duet — For users who use their iPad to draw, the Touch Bar is one of the most compelling features. It allows you to change brush size, colours and much more without having to go back to your keyboard or computer. The software Duet now lets you do this for any Mac with an iPad.

‘iPhone 8,’ growing services business predicted to increase shares of Apple by 10% — Wall Street forecasts for Apple stock are climbing, with another report claiming that the stock will hit US$155 over the summer of 2017 on pre-release hype of the ‘iPhone 8’ and continued expansion of the Services division that includes the App Store, Apple Music, and AppleCare.

Apple’s iPhone slipping in China because company won’t adapt, says Oppo & Vivo founder — Apple’s decline in Chinese iPhone shipments during 2016 can be blamed on the company refusing to adapt its tactics to the local market out of fear of risking its business elsewhere, according to Duan Yongping, the founder of Chinese smartphone brands Oppo and Vivo.

WebMD’s Pregnancy app and study will use Apple’s ResearchKit —  WebMD, a provider of health information services, and Scripps Translational Science Institute (STSI) have announced a new investigative study designed to improve researchers’ and health care professionals’ understanding of what contributes to healthy pregnancies and positive pregnancy outcomes.

iCloud unease, Apple Watch love, FlipaClip iOS animation, iMazing makes it easy way to swap photos iOS to macOS

Nearly half of iPhone users are uncomfortable storing personal data on iCloud — Nearly half of iPhone users have little or no confidence in storing their personal information on iCloud, according to a survey of 1001 iPhone users conducted by Clutch, a business-to-business (B2B) ratings and reviews firm. [I have lots of confidence in Apple’s capacity and security, but very little confidence in using a service connecting to New Zealand by a cable coming in from the west and another from the east under the sea in a country prone to volcanos and earthquakes. So I stick to my free iCloud 5GB, which I carefully manage, and only use it for the basics like Contacts, which iCloud handles automatically.]

8 things to love about Apple Watch — John Martellaro really, really loves his Apple Watch (42 mm, stainless steel, sapphire, leather loop band). “Thinking back, I wonder how I ever got along without it. Here’s my somewhat random collection of thoughts; a list of things that are essential to my life now.”

FlipaClip is a very popular mobile phone animation app — The Android version has had over 4 million downloads. FlipaClip places full animation capabilities in the hands of any mobile phone user and now there’s FlipaClip an iPhone version of the app along with a competition to help launch it for iOS.

iMazing 2.2 finally makes it easy to swallow photos between iOS and macOS — The iPhone is great for taking pictures, and the iPad gorgeous to showcase them. But Apple provides no easy way to transfer pictures from your PC or Mac onto your mobile devices. But with iMazing 2.2 it’s finally dead easy: drag and drop a folder or image file to the Photos section in iMazing, enter a name for your new photo album, and… that’s it. Done.

iPhone 8 production ramps up, smaller fast-charger, travel devices, Logitech HomeKit, FitBit iPhone

(Image from Gizbot)

Samsung & Interflex boost circuit board output for Apple’s ‘iPhone 8’ — Two firms, Interflex and Samsung Electro-Mechanics, are reportedly boosting their spending on production of flexible printed circuit boards (FPCBs) specifically for Apple’s upcoming iPhones, including the ‘iPhone 8,’ which will most likely be the first iPhone with an OLED screen.

Battery tech suitable for future iPhone promises 3x the power density, full charge in minutes — A new battery technology has been developed by a team led by the original creator of lithium-ion battery, promising safer batteries that can hold three times as much power — and charge in minutes, rather than hours.
The glass, made from lithium, sodium, or potassium greatly increases the energy density of the battery, with researchers seeing more than 1200 cycles on a cell, with little impact to life. As a side effect, the batteries still work well down to -20 degrees C (-4 degrees F).

Losing devices while travelling — How to keep your devices from being stolen or lost, what to do if they are, and how to handle devices that are broken while travelling.

Logitech sees growth opportunity, seeks to build more HomeKit — The long-time accessory maker is looking to widen its involvement in home automation and internet of things marketplaces, rather than throwing in as a development partner solely with Apple, Amazon, or Google.

Fitbit intros iPhone-connected Alta HR, plans sleep tracking updates for current wearables — Fitbit has revealed the Alta HR, an upgrade of its more fashion-oriented fitness tracker, plus plans to update the software on two of its other devices with better sleep tracking.

Fantastical 2.8.3 adds more Apple Watch options, retains ease-of-use — Small improvements to the latest version of the long-running Fantastical calendar and scheduler aim to keep the app best in class – AppleInsider checks to see if the modifications add up to anything.

iPad Pro and Pencil, Home app webpage, Apple TV 2, Watch success


New Apple iPad Pro spot shows power of Apple Pencil to sign documents — Apple has a new entrant in its iPad Pro commercials where the company responds to tweets from real people. The new one is called No more printing, and shows how to use iPad Pro and Apple Pencil to sign documents. This is the fifth spot in the series, making it likely they’re performing well for Apple.

Apple updates Home app webpage with new promotional video, design — In an update to its webpage on Wednesday, Apple refreshed the design of a mini-site dedicated to iOS 10’s Home app and debuted a video showing off some of the smarthome software’s best features.

Apple declares second-gen Apple TV ‘obsolete,’ halts most hardware support — Apple this week added the second-generation Apple TV to its list of vintage and obsolete products, rendering it ineligible for repairs in most parts of the world.

IDC: Apple Watch Series 1 and Series 2 are a ‘magnificent success’ — The worldwide wearables market reached a new all-time high as shipments reached 33.9 million units in the fourth quarter of 2016 (4Q16), growing 16.9% year over year. Shipments for the entire year grew 25% as new vendors entered the market and previous champions refreshed their product lineups. Apple’s Watch had its best quarter ever.

79% iOS 10, Instagram app, Apple Watch battery life

(Image from Digital Trends)
(Image from Digital Trends)

iOS 10 now installed on 79% of Apple’s mobile devices — A little over 5 months after the update’s release, iOS 10 had made it onto 79% of iOS devices, according to official Apple statistics shared with developers.

Instagram’s iPhone app adds support for uploading multiple photos & videos in one post — Facebook’s Instagram on Wednesday announced support for uploading up to 10 photos and videos in a single post, potentially radically changing how people use the social network.

How to make your Apple Watch battery last longer — For some heavy Apple Watch users constantly checking their wrists, Apple’s wearable device may not quite provide the 18-hour battery life the company advertises. For Apple Watch addicts, AppleInsider offers a handful of simple things you can do to squeeze some extra time out of your battery.

The Straw, Siri vs Alexa, saving Netflix vids, Apple Watch status icons


McDonalds parodies Apple ad — The McDonald’s ad uses Jeffrey Roy, identified as the company’s “person with British accent,” who parodies Jony Ive by explaining that while the STRAW isn’t “so revolutionary, it changes everything,” it’s “close.” The video goes on to mock Apple’s tendency to over-emphasize minor design elements, including use of the term “magical.” [Can’t beat an “adjective inducing masterpiece”.]

Who’s more Intelligent, Apple’s Siri or Amazon’s Alexa? Microsoft has Cortana Artificial Intelligence and Google has Assistant. On your iOS and tvOS devices, we have Siri. If you’re an Amazon fan, Alexa is present in the Echo, Echo Dot, Fire TV and Amazon Tap. All of these are very capable virtual assistants, but Siri and Alexa seem to dominate the artificial intelligence landscape for many of us. So which is more intelligent? [OK, so I asked Siri on my Mac, and it offered me the contact details for someone called Alexa. But on your iDevice at least, make sure you set Siri to the NZ accent or you’ll get nowhere. You can do this on your Mac, too, in System Preferences>Siri under Language.]

How to save Netflix videos for offline viewing on an iPhone or iPad — A feature you’re bound to see more of in streaming video apps is support for offline caching – that is, the ability to temporarily download a show or movie so you can watch it later without internet access. Here’s how to do it for Netflix, one of the most popular video services on iPhone and iPad.

What’s with the Status Icons at the top of Apple Watch — Cupertino has added several new status icons to the list on Apple Watch, so here’s what they are and what they mean.
Note that you can always access the Apple Watch User Guide. From your connected iPhone, go to the Apple Watch app and tap My Watch>General>About>View the Apple Watch User Guide. The description of the status icons are in the Get Started section.

Prince arrives on Apple Music, closing Activity Rings on Apple Watch


Prince’s Warner Brothers music catalog lands on Apple Music, other streaming services — After Prince abruptly pulled his music from all streaming services save for Tidal in 2015, the Purple One’s Warner Brothers catalogue, which contains a majority of his biggest hits, has returned. Warner Brothers has made its collection of Prince tunes available to all streaming platforms, including Apple Music and Spotify.

Apple shares new Apple Watch Series 2 ad featuring Activity rings
— Apple has posted a short commercial spot highlighting the health tracking functions of Apple Watch Series 2, urging users to keep fit by closing their Activity app rings. You can watch the spot at Apple Insider.