Tag: iphone

Imgur’s Snacks is a Story-like collection of curated GIFs

Imgur began as a way for Redditors to share images quickly and easily, but has grown into a pretty robust site and accompanying mobile app. Last week, the company announced two new features that should help you find more time-wasting goodness: a tag-based content feed and a new Snacks feature, which echoes Snapchat (and Instagram, Facebook and YouTube) Stories.

Your new feed is accessible from its own tab on your Imgur home screen, right next to the "Most Viral" tab. You'll need to tap through a few tags of your own interests and your feed will fill up with images and GIFs from the people and tags you follow. You can up/down vote, comment and add favorites from the endless scroll of Imgur content. It's a nice way to just browse stuff you're interested in, instead of what's most viral on the service.

You can find Snacks in the search tab within the Imgur app. You'll see a bar at the top, just under the search field, with a curated list of GIFs that you can tap and just, well, watch. There doesn't appear to be a way to create your own list, unfortunately, which separates Snacks from the other social media story features.

Via: TechCrunch

Source: Imgur


Apple Pay Cash money transfers are available in the US

Apple had to rush-release iOS 11.2 to tackle a nasty date-sensitive bug, leaving hopeful Apple Pay Cash users twiddling their thumbs. Thankfully, you haven't had to wait too long -- Apple's money transfer service is rolling out in the US. As promised, you can add a virtual Apple Pay Cash card to iOS' Wallet app and send Venmo-style payments through your iMessage chats. If you owe a friend for pizza, you don't have to download a separate app or hit the ATM to settle your debt.

The feature doesn't appear to be immediately available to all iOS 11.2 users, so don't panic if it isn't available right away. And there's no word on Apple Pay Cash availability outside the US, so you'll have to settle for alternatives in the near future.

It's been a long road for Apple Pay Cash: it was originally expected to launch alongside iOS 11 in September, but was pushed to a fall debut -- and clearly a late fall debut at that. Still, it's potentially significant. It gives Apple a counterpart to Google Wallet's peer-to-peer incarnation, of course, but it also serves as a way to keep people in the company's ecosystem. If you know that you can easily send cash to your iPhone-toting friends, both sides of the exchange may be more likely to stick with iPhones going forward.

Via: The Verge

Source: Apple


Google faces UK lawsuit over illegal data collection

Today, a UK-based group called "Google You Owe Us" brought a class-action suit against Google, alleging that it illegally gathered information on users from June 2011 to February 2012. The group is seeking compensation for the 5.4 million Brits who used an iPhone during this period, according to The Guardian.

Google took advantage of a loophole within the iPhone's Safari browser during this period to collect information on users, including Internet browsing history. The company then sold this information to advertisers. The iPhone's default privacy settings block sites from tracking your activity through cookies unless you specifically interact with the website (filling out a form, etc.) Google was able to bypass this through its (now defunct) Google+. If you were logged in to Google+, Google sent an "invisible" form to Apple on the user's behalf (and without their consent) that allowed for cookie tracking.

This isn't the first time that Google has been in trouble over this issue. Back in 2013, the company was forced to pay $17 million in a suit brought by 37 states and the District of Columbia. That was after it was slapped with a $22.5 million fine from the FTC in 2012. The UK doesn't have the history of suing large companies that other countries do. Richard Lloyd, the leader of the group, said to The Guardian, "This is . . . the first case of its kind in the UK against a major tech company for misusing our valuable personal data." It's not clear what will happen with the case, but it's worth keeping an eye on as it progresses, as it could have important ramifications in Britain.

Via: The Verge

Source: The Guardian


Apple’s YouTube videos can help with dad’s inane iOS questions

If spending a Saturday morning at an Apple store with a family member is your idea of Hell, then playing tech support for your relatives while you're home for the holidays is probably a lengthy stretch of the road to perdition. Well, Apple Support remembered YouTube exists and has uploaded a series of videos answering simple questions like how to send and save GIFs on an iPhone, how to update iOS, change the wallpaper and how to mute or leave a group conversation, among others.

It's all pretty basic stuff, sure, but if you bookmark the page in your browser it'll save you from explaining it yourself. And really, wouldn't you rather save that breath for something that really matters, like asking for seconds of candied yams? Or talking politics with your uncle? What's conspicuously absent is a how-to on dealing with one of the buggiest versions of iOS in recent memory.

Via: 9to5Mac

Source: Apple Support (YouTube)


Texas authorities serve Apple a warrant for mass shooter’s iPhone

Authorities are persisting in their efforts to get access to the Texas mass shooter's iPhone despite having missed an early opportunity. The San Antonio Express-News has learned that Texas Rangers served Apple warrants for data on both the perpetrator's iPhone SE and a basic LG cellphone. In the case of the iPhone, the state law enforcement unit wants access to both local and iCloud info (such as calls, messages and photos) produced since January 1st, 2016.

It's not known whether officials have obtained information since the warrants were obtained on November 9th. The company declined to comment to the Express-News citing a policy against speaking about law enforcement matters. In a previous statement, though, Apple said it had offered assistance to the FBI "immediately" after a November 7th press conference on the mass shooting, and vowed to "expedite" its response. The FBI didn't reach out for help.

The Rangers' warrant puts Apple in a difficult position. Although at least some iCloud data is accessible with a warrant, the iPhone itself is another issue. Police missed their opportunity to use the shooter's fingerprint to unlock the phone without a passcode, and the nature of iOS' encryption makes it very difficult for Apple and anyone else to access locked-down data. In the case of the San Bernardino attack, the FBI paid security experts at Cellebrite to get to a shooter's files. Apple may once again be faced with a situation where it can't fully comply with data requests.

Via: AppleInsider, TechCrunch

Source: My San Antonio


Apple pushes iOS fix for unresponsive iPhone X screens in cold weather

Last week, reports trickled in that the brand-new iPhone X's screen was unresponsive in cold weather. Apple has rushed out a new iOS update (version 11.1.2) to quick-fix the issue, which is available now to download.

The new update also fixes an issue that distorts Live Photos and videos shot with the iPhone X. It's the second time in as many weeks that Apple has pumped out an iOS patch to fix an annoying flaw in the mobile operating system. Last week, it was the autocorrect flaw that switched the letter 'i' for gibberish.


The iRig Keys I/O makes it easy to streamline your studio

Whether you're demoing a song for your band or recording a masterpiece to share on Soundcloud, you'll likely need a couple of things to connect to your computer. If you're planning on having any real instruments or vocals, you'll need some sort of audio interface to turn your analog sounds into digital ones. I have an M-Audio MobilePre USB for that task, which runs about $180 on Amazon. In addition, you probably want to have a MIDI controller, to "play" all those sounds you don't have real instruments for. These can typically cost $250 - $500 or so, depending on features. At $300, IK Multimedia's iRig Keys I/O 49 comes in at the lower end of this bracket.

As the name suggests, it's a MIDI controller with 49 full-sized piano keys and one important addition: a built-in audio interface that records 24-bit audio at a 96kHz sampling rate. As with similar controllers, the iRig Keys I/O works with PC, Mac and iOS devices and whatever software you're already familiar with. The keyboard powers via USB from your computer, a DC charger (not included) or four AA batteries, making it a super portable solution.

The physical layout of the iRig Keys is intuitive, with big, easy to access controller buttons, knobs, and touch-sensitive sliders above the piano keys. As with most MIDI controllers, there's the usual complement of pitch shifters, modulation controls, velocity-sensitive pads and other programmable buttons.

I love having physical controls to control the various sounds I'm playing with on a keyboard like this, and the iRig unit has them all laid out in an intuitive way: pads on the right, knobs in the center and sliders to the left. Everything is labeled nicely, though you'll need to know what each does if you're playing in a dark bar or recording studio without a mini light clipped on -- none of the labels light up.

The ports and the switches on the back of the iRig I/O 49 cover all the bases, too. There's a toggle for USB power, a DC port, and then a Mini-DIN MIDI port for the included USB or Lightning cables that connect the keyboard to your device. Importantly, there's the aforementioned headphone jack and balanced outputs for connecting to a PA or amp.

The keys are unweighted and made of plastic, so if you're looking for a higher-end feel, you might want to go elsewhere. Still, playing the iRig Keys feels as good as any other USB controller I've played. The general build quality is pretty high-end, down to the soft rubber feet on the bottom to keep it from sliding around on the table. It's hard to overstate the joy of playing with keys that are the same size as a real piano. If you've ever tried to hit chords with a mini-sized rig, you know just what I mean; my fat fingers need as much space as possible to hit even the most basic of chords.

Of course, any MIDI controller is only as good as the software it can access, and the iRig Keys I/O comes with some decent free apps on iOS and Mac/PC, including IK Multimedia's own SampleTank, Ableton Live 9 Lite and Studio One Prime. Your purchase also nets you a couple of different orchestral and synth sound banks and T-Racks Deluxe mastering software (a $300 value in itself). If you don't already have a preferred music-making app already, the included software is a good start, though getting the sounds from SampleTank for Mac was a rather tedious affair, thanks to the multi-part download.

I mostly use GarageBand on iOS and Mac, since that's the system I'm most familiar with these days. Connecting the controller was a simple plug and play affair -- I never had to worry about extra cables or dongles, or even power plugs. I just sat down, plugged the iRig Keys into my iPad and I was up and running, playing all sorts of electronic and orchestral sounds with ease.

I've been using MIDI controllers of various stripe for years, connecting keyboards large and small to my Macs and iOS devices. I've messed around with tiny keyboards that have a much smaller footprint. I've played with full-sized, weighted keyboards that needed a separate MIDI box to connect to my computer. I've recorded in decently-sized home studios with mixers and input racks and all kinds of expensive equipment, and I've recorded some stuff in tiny little apartments with cords strung across the living room.

These days, I connect my guitar, bass, or microphone to my Mac via a basic USB audio interface. I use a full-size Roland synth that also doubles as a controller to lay down stuff like strings, unearthly-sounding pads and things I don't have readily available, like horns or woodwinds. It's a ton of stuff that I have to unpack, set up on a table, and then put away when I'm done.

What excites me about the iRig I/O is that I can just have one main box on the table now, powered via USB. I can quickly plug in my guitar, bass or iPhone to the keyboard, monitor through the unit itself via headphones or a little studio monitor. When I'm finished, I simply unplug a couple of cables and lean the iRig up against the wall. The 49 keys allow me to stretch out across several octaves easily, and the smallish footprint lets me a create a fairly competent home studio right on my coffee table.

I'm looking forward to playing live with this thing, too -- we already have a keyboard player with a full-sized instrument on stage, but being able to drop in some AA batteries and connect the iRig Keys I/O to my iPhone for extra sounds is a pretty great thing. Our practice studio isn't super huge, and I already have a guitar, pedalboard and microphone in front of me.

All of that ability and potential adds up to a much more streamlined, capable rig for recording and performing. That it's only $300 is a huge plus, as well. I paid almost as much for my current audio interface alone, and it doesn't have a MIDI keyboard controller with programmable buttons attached. Making music quickly and in a small space is exactly what I do; having the iRig Keys I/O makes doing so much more easy and cost-effective.


The iRig Keys I/O makes it easy to streamline your studio

Whether you're demoing a song for your band or recording a masterpiece to share on Soundcloud, you'll likely need a couple of things to connect to your computer. If you're planning on having any real instruments or vocals, you'll need some sort of audio interface to turn your analog sounds into digital ones. I have an M-Audio MobilePre USB for that task, which runs about $180 on Amazon. In addition, you probably want to have a MIDI controller, to "play" all those sounds you don't have real instruments for. These can typically cost $250 - $500 or so, depending on features. At $300, IK Multimedia's iRig Keys I/O 49 comes in at the lower end of this bracket.

As the name suggests, it's a MIDI controller with 49 full-sized piano keys and one important addition: a built-in audio interface that records 24-bit audio at a 96kHz sampling rate. As with similar controllers, the iRig Keys I/O works with PC, Mac and iOS devices and whatever software you're already familiar with. The keyboard powers via USB from your computer, a DC charger (not included) or four AA batteries, making it a super portable solution.

The physical layout of the iRig Keys is intuitive, with big, easy to access controller buttons, knobs, and touch-sensitive sliders above the piano keys. As with most MIDI controllers, there's the usual complement of pitch shifters, modulation controls, velocity-sensitive pads and other programmable buttons.

I love having physical controls to control the various sounds I'm playing with on a keyboard like this, and the iRig unit has them all laid out in an intuitive way: pads on the right, knobs in the center and sliders to the left. Everything is labeled nicely, though you'll need to know what each does if you're playing in a dark bar or recording studio without a mini light clipped on -- none of the labels light up.

The ports and the switches on the back of the iRig I/O 49 cover all the bases, too. There's a toggle for USB power, a DC port, and then a Mini-DIN MIDI port for the included USB or Lightning cables that connect the keyboard to your device. Importantly, there's the aforementioned headphone jack and balanced outputs for connecting to a PA or amp.

The keys are unweighted and made of plastic, so if you're looking for a higher-end feel, you might want to go elsewhere. Still, playing the iRig Keys feels as good as any other USB controller I've played. The general build quality is pretty high-end, down to the soft rubber feet on the bottom to keep it from sliding around on the table. It's hard to overstate the joy of playing with keys that are the same size as a real piano. If you've ever tried to hit chords with a mini-sized rig, you know just what I mean; my fat fingers need as much space as possible to hit even the most basic of chords.

Of course, any MIDI controller is only as good as the software it can access, and the iRig Keys I/O comes with some decent free apps on iOS and Mac/PC, including IK Multimedia's own SampleTank, Ableton Live 9 Lite and Studio One Prime. Your purchase also nets you a couple of different orchestral and synth sound banks and T-Racks Deluxe mastering software (a $300 value in itself). If you don't already have a preferred music-making app already, the included software is a good start, though getting the sounds from SampleTank for Mac was a rather tedious affair, thanks to the multi-part download.

I mostly use GarageBand on iOS and Mac, since that's the system I'm most familiar with these days. Connecting the controller was a simple plug and play affair -- I never had to worry about extra cables or dongles, or even power plugs. I just sat down, plugged the iRig Keys into my iPad and I was up and running, playing all sorts of electronic and orchestral sounds with ease.

I've been using MIDI controllers of various stripe for years, connecting keyboards large and small to my Macs and iOS devices. I've messed around with tiny keyboards that have a much smaller footprint. I've played with full-sized, weighted keyboards that needed a separate MIDI box to connect to my computer. I've recorded in decently-sized home studios with mixers and input racks and all kinds of expensive equipment, and I've recorded some stuff in tiny little apartments with cords strung across the living room.

These days, I connect my guitar, bass, or microphone to my Mac via a basic USB audio interface. I use a full-size Roland synth that also doubles as a controller to lay down stuff like strings, unearthly-sounding pads and things I don't have readily available, like horns or woodwinds. It's a ton of stuff that I have to unpack, set up on a table, and then put away when I'm done.

What excites me about the iRig I/O is that I can just have one main box on the table now, powered via USB. I can quickly plug in my guitar, bass or iPhone to the keyboard, monitor through the unit itself via headphones or a little studio monitor. When I'm finished, I simply unplug a couple of cables and lean the iRig up against the wall. The 49 keys allow me to stretch out across several octaves easily, and the smallish footprint lets me a create a fairly competent home studio right on my coffee table.

I'm looking forward to playing live with this thing, too -- we already have a keyboard player with a full-sized instrument on stage, but being able to drop in some AA batteries and connect the iRig Keys I/O to my iPhone for extra sounds is a pretty great thing. Our practice studio isn't super huge, and I already have a guitar, pedalboard and microphone in front of me.

All of that ability and potential adds up to a much more streamlined, capable rig for recording and performing. That it's only $300 is a huge plus, as well. I paid almost as much for my current audio interface alone, and it doesn't have a MIDI keyboard controller with programmable buttons attached. Making music quickly and in a small space is exactly what I do; having the iRig Keys I/O makes doing so much more easy and cost-effective.


Apple’s 2019 iPhone could have a rear-facing 3D sensor

Apple has made no secret of its interest in augmented reality (AR) -- in interviews CEO Tim Cook gives it as much attention as sales growth. Now, it's rumoured that the company's 2019 iPhone release will come with a rear-facing 3D sensor, potentially turning the model into a leading AR device.

People familiar with the plan have revealed that the sensor would complement, not replace, the existing TrueDepth sensor on the front of the iPhone X, Bloomberg reports. The current technology, which supports Apple's Face ID, works by projecting a pattern of 30,000 laser dots onto the user's face, measuring distortion to generate a 3D image for authentication. The proposed sensor would use a "time-of-flight" method instead, calculating the time it takes for a laser to hit surrounding objects, creating a 3D image from that.

Apple released ARKit this year, a software tool that helps developers make AR-based apps for iPhone. It's proven successful with basic AR tasks, but struggles with more complex visuals and lacks depth perception. It's thought a rear-facing 3D sensor would help mitigate these issues. However, sources say that the tech is still in its infancy, and might not be used in the final version of the phone. But there's certainly no shortage of companies manufacturing time-of-flight sensors, so if it doesn't make it into the 2019 model, it's likely that it -- or some kind of incarnation of the technology -- will follow soon after.

Source: Bloomberg


Some iPhone X units suffer from crackling speakers at high volume

The iPhone X appears to have multiple teething troubles, albeit ones that aren't necessarily common. Some users on Reddit, MacRumors and Twitter report that the new handset's top speaker is crackling at higher volume levels. The severity varies, but it happens regardless of what you're playing and persists with replacement units. It doesn't appear to affect most units, but it's common enough that it's not necessarily an isolated issue.

We've asked Apple for comment and will keep you updated. Apple support reps are already collecting diagnostic info, so they're at least investigating the reports.

It's difficult to pin down a cause at this stage. Although the differing levels of the problem suggest the crackling could be a hardware issue, this comes mere weeks after Apple fixed a software flaw that produced crackles on the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus. If it's a related issue, the company could theoretically push out a patch that addresses the problem without replacements. Either way, this and other problems are a reminder that cutting-edge phones can have their share of early glitches -- it can take time before manufacturers iron out the kinks.

Via: MacRumors

Source: Reddit