The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office on Tuesday awarded Apple a patent that describes a method for efficiently manufacturing curved touch surfaces, suggesting the company may be experimenting with curved iOS device displays. -- AppleInsider.
Our 2013 smartphone guide has already covered the best hardware to buy and our favorite games for each platform. For the final edition, we'll be looking at a few cool tweaks and apps to help manage your smartphone and make it more useful. After all, smartphones are high-tech Swiss army knives. There are a million apps, functions, and settings, and it can all get a little overwhelming. But fear not--we at Ars spend most of our waking hours attached to our smart devices, and we've accumulated quite the pile of time-saving shortcuts and applications to make our lives easier. We want to share with you!
We've got all three major smartphone ecosystems covered in this guide, but don't just pay attention to the items for your platform of choice. While learning about neat things your phone can do is cool, it's interesting to see what's possible on the other side of the fence. And you just might want to switch some day. -- Ars Technica.
There's been a lot of talk about Touch ID troubles in the news lately. Ars Technica's Christina Bonnington wrote an excellent explainer about the iPhone 5s's sensor itself, along with some typical issues users might run into over time, while engineer and pundit Dr. Drang wonders if your recorded fingerprint data might decay after a few months of misreads, given that the Touch ID sensor is continually trying to improve the information it has on your fingerprint.
Touch ID certainly isn't perfect: As someone who's been using it since I picked up my iPhone 5s on launch day, I've had my fair share of frustration--especially because I swapped out my simple 4-digit passcode with a multi-character alphanumeric version.
But despite its occasional malfunctions, Touch ID has become one of my favorite features on the iPhone. To make sure it stays one of yours, too, here are a few tips and tricks I've found to keep Touch ID working properly, as well as some advice about when you shouldn't use it at all. -- Macworld.
If you need to transfer a file or two from one Mac to another, you may use a service like Dropbox, or copy them to a USB drive and move them manually; however, there are some built-in options that can be substantially faster, especially if you are transferring large amounts of data up to numerous gigabytes. -- MacFixIt.
It may seem as if the fourth generation of mobile communications technology has only just hit the airwaves. But so-called 4G technology has been around in various guises since 2006 and is now widely available in metropolitan areas of the US, Europe and Asia.
It's no surprise then that communications specialists are beginning to think about the next revolution. So what will 5G bring us?
The fifth generation of mobile communications technology will see the end of the "cell" as the fundamental building block of communication networks. -- MIT Technology Review.
Some of us at TidBITS have been using FileMaker for over two decades, which isn't something we can say about many software products. Apple subsidiary FileMaker, Inc. has now released version 13 of its eponymous database tool, focusing heavily on mobile integration (with the free FileMaker Go apps for iOS) and a completely revamped Web publishing approach.
People post on Twitter or write stories for online news organizations like The Huffington Post or Gawker that spread quickly on the web as if factual, when they really aren't.
Truth has never been an essential ingredient of viral content on the Internet. But in the stepped-up competition for readers, digital news sites are increasingly blurring the line between fact and fiction, and saying that it is all part of doing business in the rough-and-tumble world of online journalism. -- New York Times.
Robert Hancock confirmed a Mavericks problem with large duplications of mail in the Sent box, using OS X's Mail app. The problem with Mavericks has also been seen with Outlook for Mac. -- MacWindows.
Over the next few weeks, we'll be reviewing Cambridge Audio's Minx Go, the BRAVEN 710, and Jawbone's Big JamBox. All of these are great speakers, but there's one problem: none of them support Apple's AirPlay, the iOS-compatible music streaming solution that allows users to quickly stream music from any iDevice. Fortunately, it is actually possible to AirPlay music to an unsupported Bluetooth speaker using a simple workaround, and in this article we explain how. -- AppAdvice.
Apple on Friday enabled iBeacon location-aware transmitters at all of its U.S. retail stores, giving the company the ability to easily provide product information and allow shoppers to quickly check out via their iPhone. But initial tests by AppleInsider show the use of iBeacons remains limited at launch, suggesting bigger things are yet to come. -- AppleInsider.
The USB 3.0 Promoter Group announced on Wednesday that it had finalized a new type of connector for USB cables that would fit into your PC no matter which way the cable is oriented. But if a USB 2.0 cable will do the job, you don't have to wait. Tripp Lite has been shipping reversible USB 2.0 cables for several months. -- Macworld.
Apple's iPhone 5s has a new Slo-Mo video capture tool that can create a cool effect on moving objects by shooting at 120 fps (frames per second). Here, we show you how to use Slo-Mo in iPhone 5s, and how you can share the Slo-Mo video you've captured with others. -- Macworld UK.
Apple's iPhone 5s has the new Burst Mode camera feature, which lets users take up to 10 photos per second to get the perfect shot. Ideal for moving subjects, the Burst Mode tool can come in really handy for iPhone photographers. Here's how to use Burst Mode on iPhone 5s. -- Macworld UK.
Apple flipped a switch this week and enabled customers at 254 U.S. Apple Stores to get spammed with micro-location based promotional nagging.
The new system, called iBeacon, is a low cost, low-energy way to achieve actionable "indoor GPS" in which "beacons" use Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) signals to figure out exactly where you are and send messages relevant to that specific location.
I've written before that Apple's larger iBeacon plan is brilliant, and it is.
But Apple Stores are probably the least-compelling iBeacon scenario I can think of. -- Cult of Mac.
Steve Jobs once said in an interview that everyone in America should learn programming.
Well, if you're interested in coding, but don't know where to start, your local Apple Store may be the place for you.
Over the weekend, Apple announced plans to support Computer Science Education Week (December 9 -- 15) by offering a one-hour introduction to computer science in a workshop at its brick and mortar stores. -- Cult of Mac.
You are no longer the sucker you used to be.
So suggests continuing research from the Stanford Graduate School of Business into the challenges marketers face in reaching consumers in the digital age. As you might suspect, the research shows that a wealth of online product information and user reviews is causing a fundamental shift in how consumers make decisions. -- New York Times.
A couple of months ago, the Haggler retired his iPhone 4S for a phone that runs on the Android operating system. Soon, he noticed something odd: texts sent from iPhones of friends and relatives vanished into the ether. It was as if, after abandoning the world of Apple, he was now suffering retaliation from it. People with iPhones suddenly assumed that the Haggler was ignoring them, which angered them and led them to judge the Haggler. -- New York Times.
In July we reported that Apple was in the race to acquire PrimeSense and last month the news was official. Little did we know at the time that Apple's Tel Aviv research center was already working on sensing technologies specializing in three-dimensional analysis of body and facial movements, and so the acquisition of PrimeSense was a perfect fit to advance future projects. A quick look at PrimeSense's website will show you that Apple has acquired a company that possesses a lot of real-world technology that could advance many Apple products in the future. Today's report takes a peek at a few of the patents that Apple has inherited. -- Patently Apple.
Revelations from classified documents acquired by Edward Snowden are showing us how mobile technology and the open Internet have been co-opted into history's largest government surveillance network. Is there any way to "take back the net," or will national powers start breaking up the Internet into separate fiefdoms? -- TidBITS.
PhoneBuff has put together an interesting video showcasing fifty things Siri can do now, and we think there's a pretty high chance you won't be aware of all of them. It's getting on for eight minutes long, but well worth a look if you want to make sure you're getting the most out of Apple's virtual assistant.
The video includes examples of linked queries, where Siri knows who or what you are referring to based on your previous question.
PhoneBuff did a similar thing with Google Now's Voice Commands, and although they don't use the same questions -- each video is designed to illustrate their respective capabilities rather than a head-to-head challenge -- it does make for an interesting comparison. -- 9to5Mac.
No matter how much you love Siri, we all know it's just not as reliable as Apple's polished videos would lead you to believe. Of course, it would be in poor choice for Apple to publish sloppy demos, right?
But what if Apple let Siri take over your driving experience too? The Smart Department's satirical video probably isn't too far from reality if that's the premise. -- 9to5Mac.
Get a funny picture or movie sent to your iPhone or iPad that you want to send along and share with someone else? Messages app allows you to easily create new image and media messages directly from an existing message thread, without having to use the traditional forward feature. This makes sharing images, funny videos, amusing gifs, and anything else from a message thread image list easier and faster than ever. You can either send them to another contact directly, or post them to your Facebook and Twitter feeds if you'd prefer to share them more broadly too. -- OS X Daily.
WHAT IF I DON'T USE MY INK JET PRINTER FOR LONG PERIODS, HOW DOES THAT AFFECT THE PRINT QUALITY?
The simple answer -- Not using your inkjet printer for long periods WILL cause your ink to dry out and render a cartridge useless. Most people are trying to save money any way they can. One item in a house hold that can get very expensive is ink for a printer. So many people figure to save on the cost of ink we'll only print what we absolutely have to. This may very well mean not printing for one week to 3 months in some households. Here's the problem with that. The folks at PC World recommend that you keep your inkjet printer powered ON at all times [which I do] -- even when you have absolutely no intention of printing anything. Why? Because it keeps the print heads cleaner and makes them less likely to gunk up and need replacing.] -- Ink & Toner Solutions Blog.
Craig Grannell explains why Apple's little black box is a misunderstood and under-appreciated product -- seemingly even by the company that made it. -- PC & Tech Authority.
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