MagBytes 91 is here,with all the news about Apple’s new iPhone 8s, the iPhone X, iOS 11, macOS High Sierra, new Apple TV, new Watch Series 3 and Apple TV, new operating systems for Watch and TV and more.
With a host of handy tips and three new products, this handy PDF reference should make your day.
Apple squashes iOS 11 bugs with quick release of iOS 11.0.1 — Just a week after iOS 11 was launched to the public, Apple has quickly followed up with iOS 11.0.1, a small update intended to address bugs and fix various issues with the software. Release notes accompanying iOS 11.0.1 simply state the update “includes bug fixes and improvements for your iPhone or iPad.” [Hope it fixes the speed issues on my iPhone 6; my work iPhone 5 seemed fine, however.] iOS 11 includes a new voice for Siri, as well as the ARKit tools that developers can use to create advanced augmented reality applications. It also boasts a redesigned App Store, and various features like Do Not Disturb While Driving and a revamped Music app.
Apple spends an estimated US$247.51 on iPhone 8 parts, US$288.08 on iPhone 8 Plus —Apple CEO Tim Cook has repeatedly dismissed bill of material estimates as incorrect, but that’s not stopping research firm IHS Markit to share its latest findings with industry analysts. This year, the firm estimates Apple spends US$247.51 on the components that comprise one 4.7-inch iPhone 8 with 64GB of storage.
Apple’s iPhone 8 supports EVS for high-quality audio over LTE —Largely unnoticed in the aftermath of Apple’s iPhone unveiling, the new iPhone 8 lineup now supports the enhanced voice services (EVS) codec, promising higher quality calls over LTE networks that support the feature.
Apple TV 4K teardown demonstrates new cooling system for A10X processor — A disassembly of the new Apple TV 4K shows not only the improved processor in the device, but a completely redesigned cooling solution complete with “serious thermal venting” plus a fan.
Chips inside the device include a Broadcom Thunderbolt to Gigabit Ethernet chip, 3GB of SK Hynix RAM, a custom memory controller, a Murata wi-fi and Bluetooth module, Toshiba flash memory, and a Megachips FisplayPort 1.4 to HDMI 2.0 converter.
Plex News comes to Apple TV, iPhone & iPad with over 190 sources — Making use of its Watchup acquisition, Plex on Tuesday announced a new feature for its media streaming software, Plex News, which assembles a personalised video montage based on a range of global sources. [Build your own video news silo …]
Thirty-three million Apple Watches sold so far — Apple has sold 33 million Apple Watches since the launch of the line over two years ago — and 15 million in the past year, according to estimates from Asymco’s Horace Dediu. The analyst says the unit sales in the past year add up to $4.9 billion in revenue.
Apple updates TestFlight & Swift Playgrounds for iOS 11’s new tech — In conjunction with the release of iOS 11, Apple has also released new versions of TestFlight and Swift Playgrounds, redesigning the former’s interface and adding an things like an Augmented Reality challenge to the latter.
OmniFocus update exploits powerful new features in iOS 11 — The latest version from the Omni Group updates for iOS 11 compatibility, but also takes advantages of changes to Siri and adds drag and drop.
How to find the 32-bit apps on your iPhone or iPad that won’t work in iOS 11 at all — The day has come: Apple will disallow 32-bit apps from running on iOS 11. If you haven’t updated because of worries of incompatibility, AppleInsider shows you how to identify which apps installed on your iPhone are 32-bit allowing you to decide if you want to upgrade or wait.
Fun in PCalc — A new update for the app uses iOS 11’s ARKit feature to bring augmented reality into your number-filled world. Just tap the info button on the calculator keypad, choose Help, then tap About PCalc. Once you see the floating 42 badge tap anywhere on the screen to bring up the AR controls so you can throw marbles, dice, and bananas into your virtual world.
Apple launches tvOS 11 for Apple TV, adding live news & sports in TV app —As promised Apple on Tuesday released the finished version of tvOS 11, build 15J381, an update for fourth-generation Apple TVs that brings mostly evolutionary improvements, the most significant being groundwork for live news and sports features in the TV app. Apple has rolled out tvOS 11 with AirPlay 2, which offers multi-room audio support. It also includes the ability to automatically switch between light and dark interface modes.
TV availability in tvOS spreading — Apple began the rollout of TV app in Australia, Canada ahead of iOS 11 & tvOS 11 debut. tvOS 11 release, which will deliver the one-stop streaming hub to seven additional countries later this year. Apple is expanding availability of the TV app to seven countries — Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Sweden, Norway and the UK — by the end of 2017.
Apple TV owners running the latest tvOS software in Australia [which may include NZ, does anyone know? Since NZ is administered mostly from Sydney] and Canada discovered the TV app, or at least its icon, on their home screen earlier today and took to Twitter to note the the change. On fourth-generation Apple TV units, the TV app seems to be a placeholder instead of a functional app, but its presence hints at an imminent release likely timed to coincide with tomorrow’s iOS 11 and tvOS 11 launch. The TV app acts as a central hub for browsing, discovering and managing streaming content across a variety of providers and owned media.
Apple launches watchOS 4 for Apple Watch with improved Activity & Workout tracking, revamped Music app, Siri watch face —The Apple Watch interface has been refined and improved with today’s launch of watchOS 4, including a new vertically scrolling app dock, the ability to view installed apps in a list view instead of grid, and new watch faces including a Siri smart assistant and characters from the iconic “Toy Story” films.
watchOS 4 no longer lets you browse iPhone music library on your Apple Watch —In a major change to how the Apple Watch operates, users can no longer browse their iPhone’s music library after updating to watchOS 4, and instead can only view songs stored on the watch itself.
Hands-on with Apple’s iPhone X — Daniel Eran Dilger has seen an iPhone X ‘in the flesh’. Apple released its first major iPhone redesign in three years on Tuesday with iPhone X, a technologically advanced smartphone that boasts an all-new OLED Super Retina Display, TrueDepth camera system, Face ID, A11 Bionic Chip with onboard neural engine and more. AppleInsider went hands-on with Apple’s newest flagship and came away impressed by the handset’s fit and finish. TechConnect has compared it to the even bigger Samsung Galaxy Note 8.
Apple’s iPhone 8 pre-orders will start at 12:01am US Pacific time on Friday — This Friday’s iPhone 8 preorders will start at 12:01am US Pacific time, or 3:01am US Eastern, Apple has confirmed via its website. The time is consistent with Apple’s normal iPhone strategy, and will likely see many US shoppers staying up late to ensure they get an order delivered on the phone’s September 22 ship date. Frequently, launch-day iPhone stocks will run out within hours or even minutes of pre-orders beginning, though later orders may still ship the same weekend.
Apple deletes USB-C troubleshooting port on Apple TV 4K, adds Gigabit Ethernet —The new Apple TV 4K is getting faster network connectivity with the addition of a Gigabit Ethernet port, but Apple has also removed the USB-C port previously used for troubleshooting and screenshot capture.
5 reasons to buy Apple Watch Series 3 — There are a few stand-out Apple Watch Series 3 features that you absolutely must have. When Cupertino announced the Apple Watch Series 3, we were inundated with details about the new wearable device. Because of that, you might not have noticed the really cool things the latest Apple Watch is capable of. Let’s take a look at what’s really great about this third-generation Apple Watch. This will also help you see why it’s time to buy an Apple Watch Series 3. Also note that Apple Watch Series 3 boosts minimum required device to iPhone 6 for initial setup.
The iPhone X was the ‘But wait, there’s more’ moment: before that, Apple introduced iPhone 8 — This new iPhone a new glass front and back, with an aluminum trim around the sides. It is a very durable glass, and microscopically sealed for water and dust resistance.
The device has a True Tone display for the first time, as well as an all new A11 Bionic System on Chip. The A11 Bionic has six cores, two of which are performance cores and four of which are efficiency cores.
Of course, the camera has been improved! A new 12MP sensor is in the iPhone 8, and two sensors are found in the iPhone 8 Plus. Apple has added a feature called Portrait Lighting to the iPhone 8 Plus. It provides lighting effects for photos in real time, and the effects can be changed after you’ve taken the photo.
Video will now be 4K 60 frames per second (or 1080p 240 frame per second slo-mo), and 2 million image tiles are analyzed each second. As you are shooting, the video is analysed.
Augmented reality is a huge area for Apple, and today Phil Schiller noted that the iPhone 8 is the first smartphone optimized for AR. MLB AtBat will actually superimpose player stats onto players in real time. Amazing stuff! Several other AR apps were demonstrated during the show. As expected, the iPhone 8 will support wireless charging using the Qi standard. Qi chargers will be sold in the Apple retail stores.
It will be available in 64GB and 256GB configurations, with the iPhone 8 starting at NZ$1249/US$699 and the iPhone 8 Plus available at NZ$1449/US$799.
(iPhone 7 starts at NZ$999 for the 4.7-inch display and NZ$1219 for the Plus with 5.5-inch display.)
The phones can be pre-ordered on September 15 and will be available on September 22. (iOS 11 will arrive on September 19th.)
Looks like September 12th will be the date Apple launches its ‘completely new’ iPhone. That means it won’t be new tech in an existing case, but an all-new case as well. And that’s not an official, Apple-announced date, either, it’s just the ‘widely tipped’ date. Apple may also usher in this new device in its new campus, Apple Park, the huge round facility it’s been building over the last couple of years in Cupertino.
As I’ve mentioned before, papers all over the world, including to its discredit the New Zealand Herald, have been publishing articles as if the iPhone 8 already exists and they already know what’s in it. Neither have been even remotely true. Along with lists of its guessed-at ‘features’ have been the usual naysayers predicting its failure. These commentators have been doing this for decades now, before every imminent Apple launch.
Clearly they haven’t been learning from their own failures.
Perhaps I’m being harsh on the Herald, which is essentially just a republisher these days anyway, with almost no journalists to draw on – how’s that working out for you? Anyway, some even otherwise reputable Apple commentary sites have been indulging in this stupidity, and presumably for the same reason: for web traffic and readership.
Meanwhile, Samsung has launched its Galaxy 8. Samsung has made some pretty hot phones for sure, and indeed its hereditary CEO has been in hot water himself and is now facing jail time. The Note 8 has a large ‘Infinity Display’ (edge-to-edge) along with Samsung’s first dual camera module [which Apple introduced with iPhone 7+), an improved S Pen, and features like iris scanning, facial recognition, and wireless charging. The Galaxy 8 uses a Snapdragon 835 CPU, currently the most powerful chip available to Android devices. It’s produced using 10-nanometer manufacturing, which means its tiny transistors are placed ever so slightly closer together. iPhone 7 uses 14-nanometre; iPhone 8 will most likely have 10-nanometer. But despite fewer cores and slower clock speeds, iPhones have been outpacing its fastest Android-powered rivals in benchmarks and speed tests for years thanks to Apple being able to refine and integrate every single component in its devices. Actually, when you think about it, Samsung should be able to do this too … Anyway, if you can handle the Android flurry of overlapping operating systems available, it looks like an advanced and excellent smartphone, although its getting towards tablet-size.
Where will Apple go with iPhone 8? We’ll soon see. In the near future, I don’t see the operating systems merging. iOS started as a mobile version of macOS and they have largely been developed separately, but increasingly they’re borrowing features from each other. Until the systems merge, you won’t be able to run an iPad app on a Mac and vice versa – you’ll still have to acquire companion versions of the same app for either platform. Apart from one interface using screen-touch and the other using input (trackpads, mice etc), the real barrier to all this is simply capacity: CPU power and storage.
Those barriers are being lowered almost daily.
The ‘iPhone 8’ will have to displace the iPhone 6S to become the world’s most used smartphone — According to ScientiaMobile, the upcoming iPhone 8 will have to displace the iPhone 6s to become the world’s most used smartphone. The research group’s Mobile Overview Report (MOVR) notes that the iPhone 6S was the most used smartphone model in the world despite the iPhone 7 launch in September 2016.
Despite, iPhone 7 (above) was the best selling smartphone in the first quarter according to the latest research from Strategy Analytics. The research group estimates that Apple shipped 21.5 million units and captured 6% marketshare worldwide in the first quarter (Q1) of 2017.
Apple’s iOS 10, Siri & HomeKit bring accessibility to a quadriplegic man’s entire home — Todd Stabelfeldt has been paralyzed from the shoulders down since a gun accident at age 8 severed his spinal cord, leaving him confined to a wheelchair as a quadriplegic. Using iOS Switch Control, Todd has gained new abilities and independence through accessible technology. And now, using HomeKit and Siri, his entire home has become accessible.
Why latest iOS update is a must-have — This week’s iOS 10.3.1 update might have seemed anticlimactic by comparison to the original 10.3 update, but a quick look at the security notes issued for the update shows a very good reason why every owner of an iOS device running 10.3 should install the new update immediately. But Apple has warned iCloud users some services may get accidentally reactivated with iOS 10.3 [so you just deactivate them again].
Don’t Look for iPhone 8 until October or November — Apple’s iPhone 8 may not ship until October or November instead of the September window we usually see. The reason for the later launch may be tied to production problems with the smartphone’s curved OLED display.
Apple World Today Video Tip shows how to create a new checklist in Notes on an iPhone with 3D Touch — Checklists are a wonderful way to organize tasks and then make sure they’ve been accomplished, and the Notes app on the iPhone is a handy tool for keeping track of those tasks as soon as they’re completed. In today’s video tip we show you how to use 3D Touch on an iPhone to quickly create a new checklist.
Apple said to diversify Apple Watch manufacturing duties as sales expand — Apple Watch is currently manufactured by one company, but that’s reportedly set to change in the latter half of this year, when Apple is rumored to bring on a second partner to build the flagship Series 2 model.
Scania brings Apple’s CarPlay to semi trucks for first time — A Swedish manufacturer, Scania, on Wednesday announced plans to build CarPlay into some of it heavy trucks, marking perhaps the first time Apple’s platform has been integrated into non-consumer vehicles.
In 1984,Apple, which had already been making computers since 1977, introduced the Macintosh. The ease of use and all-in-one form factor changed the computing industry, although the ‘real’ computer users scoffed. That said, the Mac didn’t really take off until the Desktop Publishing revolution happened a couple of years later.
In 2001, Apple introduced the iPod and dramatically revolutionised portable music. The hegemony of the iPod was only really broken by smartphones, which gradually became everyone’s default music vessels.
In 2007, Apple introduced the iPhone,which kicked off the smartphone revolution. Steve Jobs, in his announcement, hoped for just one percent of the worldwide mobile phone market share! That would have been 10 million phones in 2008. Apple sold 4.7 million iPhones in the first three months, but the first Android phones came out in November 2008, which has remained the only real competitor. In 2010, Jobs met with Google exec Eric Schmidt and threatened him over copying features for Android… Schmidt had been on Apple’s board.
Android had 43% of the smartphone market by mid 2011. Android’s share is now dominant, largely due to lower-price models, but it’s unlikely Apple will reduce prices since it’s just not the way the Inc works.
But this year, Apple releases it’s tenth anniversary model (nominally, iPhone 8) and already pundits reckon it will cost over US$1000 (about NZ$1400). This is really steep when you can get capable smartphones for a couple of hundred these days, so Apple had better make something pretty compelling for that price. NZ$1400 makes me quail, frankly, and I need a new iPhone this year.
Apple is a very different company in 2017.iPhone changed everything after it was introduced in ’07, including Apple revenue which is now dramatically in the iPhone camp, but Apple was ‘like the wild west‘ ten years ago compared to its rigid structures and hierarchies in ’17. Back then, things were hard to control, but it also meant potentially crazy ideas could sometimes flourish.
Former Apple engineer Bob Burrough reckons Tim Cook has tried to eliminate executive conflict within Apple and grow middle management — but so doing, has crippled the Mac maker’s old spirit.
There does appear to be a lack of cohesion; Jobs’ megalomaniac vision certainly managed to focus things. Chinese telephonics and networking giant Hawaii reckons it can overtake Apple in 2018. Apple has some work to do, for sure. But on price? The cheapest iPhone Apple sells is the US$400 iPhone SE. Huawei’s least expensive smartphone retails for about US$50. Flooding the market with cheap always works, of course, but great is still great.