Friend and family tracker now available on iCloud.com for greater access
Apple on Wednesday added its selective friends-and-family tracking service Find My Friends to its iCloud.com site, letting users sign in on any Internet-connected device to locate friends or loved ones who have the app on their mobile devices and have agreed to have their location revealed to the user. Participants can opt to change status at any time or enable (or disable) the tracking for select periods, such as when a family is visiting a theme park and wants to each go their separate ways.
iTunes U gets ability to add deadlines to Calendar
In tandem with the release of iOS 8, Apple has also begun updating its optional first-party apps with fresh support. These include Podcasts, iTunes U, Remote, and Find My iPhone. Other apps should be updated shortly.
Affected services included Photos, Keychain, Find My iPhone
Many Apple online services -- and "some" percentage of users -- were caught in a brief but severe outage on Thursday, according to the company's official system status page. This included every iCloud service, such as Photos, device backups, Keychain, Mail, Documents in the Cloud, and web apps. Also impacted were Back to My Mac, Find My Friends, Find My iPhone, and iMovie Theater.
Precise changes so far undocumented
[Updated with Yosemite changes] Apple has started seeding third previews of OS X Yosemite and iOS 8 to developers. The former is listed as build 14A283o, and can be downloaded via the Mac App Store or the Mac Dev Center. Beta 3 of iOS 8 is identified as build 12A4318c, and available either as an over-the-air update or through the iOS Dev Center. To go with it, Apple is pushing out new betas of Find my iPhone and Find My Friends.
Tech could be applied to Find My Friends
A newly-published Apple patent application suggests the ability to adjust the precision of shared location data, notes AppleInsider. Titled Variable Precision Location Sharing, the filing suggests options to reduce precision to the neighborhood or even city level, instead of simply offering total accuracy or completely disabling tracking. The concept appears to be aimed at iOS apps like Find My Friends.
We try Apple's new native iOS 5 apps
Apple's two main companion apps for iOS 5, Find My Friends and AirPort Utility, have gone live just hours before the OS itself is available. We've had the opportunity to try both and to gauge how they work in practice. We'll also gauge whether Find My Friends stacks up well against its main rival, Google Latitude.
Look echoed in iCloud version of Find My iPhone
Apple has released Find My Friends, the iOS tracking app announced at last week's iPhone event. Similar in concept to Google Latitude, Find My Friends lets users follow people who have accepted requests in their own copies of the app. Once they give the thumbs up, friends will appear both on a list of contacts and on a Google map.
All recent devices supported
Presenting at its special iPhone event, Apple has announced that iOS 5 will go public on October 12th. All of Apple's recent iOS devices will be supported, including first- and second-generation iPads, the iPhone 4 and 3GS, and third- and fourth-generation iPod touches. The firmware introduces a host of features, such as Twitter integration, the BBM-like iMessage, Newsstand, and an overhauled notification system.
Find My Friends HTML pops up
The possibility of Apple's Find My Friends feature grew stronger Saturday after web code was distributed by an anonymous source. While exploring a support system for the outgoing MobileMe, the AppleInsider contact found a block of code for tasks such as viewing the followed or following lists, statuses, and bans. Also mentioned are photo and video streams that might tie the support system or Find My Friends into iCloud's Photo Stream feature.