They are making me do it
"Quick proposal," began the message from managing editor Mike Wuerthele. "How about not wearing your Apple Watch for seven days?" I've just gulped typing those words to you and it's some hours since the message. When this happened I was a little bit more tetchy, explaining that I couldn't do this because – quite reasonably – "I hate you." Only, it's a good idea. My Watch has become part of my regular life, an unthinking and automatic part of it, so doing without it for a time will make me think about it. Surely I'll be better positioned to quantify what I missed, surely I'll be able to assess what I feel has been a boon to my working life.
Free agent Matt Bonner claims larger size of phone induced minor injury
A NBA player is blaming the screen size of Apple's iPhone 6 plus for a persistent arm injury. San Antonio Spurs player Matt Bonner is citing his own experience, as well as that of his training staff for the claim that the larger device necessitating a longer reach across the device as well as changes in use habits is responsible for his tennis elbow-like injury.
Documents allege that Apple Pay support in UK will kick off next Tuesday
A memo to supermarket chain Waitrose employees (and seemingly confirmed by Apple UK training documents) appears to reveal that Apple Pay in the UK will launch on July 14, albeit with varying restrictions on how much buyers can purchase without having to enter additional information. According to reports, most merchants will have a limit of £20 ($31.24 US) on any kind of contactless payment system, except some new POS terminals that are specifically designed to support Apple Pay.
Initial results point to iTunes mishandling of network shares
Over the period of time since iTunes 12.2 was released, MacNN has been receiving spotty reports of iTunes library corruptions. We've begun preliminary testing on the root cause, and a final determination or possible workaround is some time away -- however, w do have solid data pointing to iTunes corrupting libraries hosted over an OS X network share periodically. More problematically, iTunes libraries accessed over an SMB share from either a Windows-based computer or network attached storage (NAS) device are frequently damaged by some iTunes process.
New version brings Time Machine fixes, Profile Manager update
Hidden inside Apple's flood of releases last week, the Cupertino manufacturer released a point update to OS X Server for OS X 10.10.4 Yosemite. The server package that adds functionality to the base OS X "client" has been incremented to version 4.1.3, and brings security fixes, stability improvements, and importantly improved reliability of Time Machine backups and restores.
Exploiting this confusing but immensely useful feature
It is in all ways a great thing that Apple Music includes the ability for you to download music to listen to when you don't have an internet connection -- or you don't want to use the one you've got. If you're away from Wi-Fi and have a limit on how much data you can download without surcharges, Apple Music can eat through that like nobody's business. Plus whatever your plan, streaming much just kills your battery. So being able to have one big downloading session before you head out the door is brilliant. It's also ridiculously confusing.
Apple Music is great for listeners, not so much for artists
As a music fan, I'm delighted that Apple Music is finally here. The thought of being able to access most of Apple's iTunes catalog for a low monthly fee is a mouth-watering prospect. Before services like this were available, I would routinely spend two or three times as much every month on buying new music to feed my addiction. Therein lies the problem for independent artists, but also all artists at large, as streaming services move from being marginal, secondary sources of income to something increasingly material.
Sometimes you get the news, sometimes news gets you
Happy post-Fourth of July! We hope you emerged from the holiday unburnt from the sun, the grill, or explosives! Today marks our second iteration of a new column about the stories that entertained us, informed us, or just plain tickled us in the course of the week. We're not just highlighting our own writing -- anything that we've discussed behind the scenes here at MacNN is fair game. Read on for thoughts on the events of the week in the tech world including a bevy of Apple Music stories, just as many OS X tales, and some goofy stories from around the web.
Program will be bi-weekly, focus on West Coast rap and hip-hop
Following the decision to release his first album The Chronic as an Apple Music exclusive, untitled Apple executive Dr. Dre will debut a new bi-weekly radio show on Beats 1 on Saturday, July 4, entitled "The Pharmacy," focusing on West Coast urban music and other tracks of interest to Dre. The first episode will debut at 6PM ET, and joins a host of other shows hosted by prominent musicians.
Next iPhone may sport higher-resolution camera module, more RAM, more
Possibly anticipating continued record sales, Apple has allegedly already begun preliminary production for this fall's anticipated iPhone 6 refresh, with the new models presumably called the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus. Images of a new alleged motherboard (likely to be legitimate in our view) and casing suggest that the external appearance compared to the current models will change little, and that the next upgrade will focus on internal and software improvements.
Share of iPhone increases by 1.8 percent for second quarter in a row
Matching its performance in the previous quarter, Apple's iPhone again gained nearly two percent market share in the US in the last three months, according to ComScore, widening its lead as the dominant smartphone maker. While Android as a platform continued to hold the top platform position at 52.1 percent, it again suffered an overall decline of 0.7 percent, while iOS surged to 43.5, a 1.8 percent gain matched exactly by losses from Android, Microsoft, and BlackBerry.
Features dialog, snatches of performance from star Michael Fassbender
Universal Studios has released a full-length, two-and-a-half-minute trailer for its upcoming Steve Jobs biopic, which is set to open on October 9 and features Michael Fassbender in the title role, along with Seth Rogen as Steve Wozniak, Jeff Daniels as John Sculley, Kate Winslet as Mac marketing chief Joanna Hoffman, and Katherine Waterston as Chrisann Brennan, the mother of Jobs' first child, Lisa.
GarageBand gets expanded EDM library
Following the launch of Apple Music, Apple pushed out the latest version of GarageBand for both Mac and iOS. GarageBand, as you are likely aware, is Apple's entry-level music production software that ships free with all Macs. While the latest release doesn't do much to change the experience of using the software, it does introduce a range of additional content that can be used to create new music.
Latest OS X version offers preliminary support for third-party drives
Although many are celebrating the long-awaited arrival of Trim support for third-party SSD storage that can be enabled by users, Apple's implementation of it should be considered preliminary, and comes with an unusual and strongly-worded warning that offers no support if the user should experience problems. In addition, some popular SSD models, notably Samsung's 840 and 850 lines, may be subject to a data-destroying bug if Trim is activated.
App Update for Jul 2, 2015
App development has taken off in the last few years, making it increasingly difficult to stay on top of all the latest versions. To help all of you out, we here at MacNN are dedicated to sorting through new update releases, and highlighting some of the important ones here, in the relaunch of our App Update column. Today, we look at revisions to RapidWeaver, M3Unity, Printopia, OmniFocus, and DNSCrypt.
Contest to win a 5K iMac through MacNN Deals ends next week
If you want to get your hands on the Apple iMac with Retina 5K display for free via the MacNN Deals giveaway, this is your reminder to enter. The competition, to win the iMac with a 27-inch 5120x2880 IPS display worth $2,000, will be closing in less than a week, so if you want the chance to own it, you have to act quickly.
Matched music downloaded as DRM-locked files, iOS music Home Sharing dead
The heralded Apple Music service launch has accompanied a merger of iTunes Match with Apple's new streaming service. However, possibly to appease record labels, some significant changes have been made to iTunes functionality, including the removal of Home Sharing for music on the iPhone and iPad, as well as substituting iTunes Matched songs downloaded to a device with DRM-laden versions.
Scrabbling around for reasons to diss the service
It's not compulsory to like anything, and the world would be a dull place if everybody thought the same way. Plus, there are criticisms you can make of Apple Music's launch, its various limitations, and how iTunes 12 is still complex, some of which we delved into earlier today. Only Apple Music is getting a bad press primarily for being good, and for doing what you'd expect a streaming music service to do. It has honestly been criticized for being fun. Damn those Apple people, how dare they make something fun? Don't they know music is serious?
Technology veteran on learning from mistakes
Chris Bledsoe was on the team at Apple that launched the App Store. On The Successful Failure podcast, the Apple executive has given a rare interview about failure, success, and what you can learn from each. While little actual concrete data was given about Apple's internal makeup, Bledsoe discusses the general culture around the launch, as well as provides some insights on the pressures that new product launches are under.
Our music library just got a whole lot bigger
It's been called over-complicated, it's been called confusing, but it's also been called the place where you keep all your music by nearly everyone in the civilized world. That last has now changed: it's the place you get to almost all the music ever created in the history of the world, and then some. Okay, maybe no,t but we had -- hang on, let's check -- 9,692 songs yesterday and today we have (counts on fingers) 30,000,000, give or take the Beatles. The new iTunes 12.2 for Mac brings some minor changes, and one massive one with the introduction of Apple Music to OS X.
App Update for Jul 1, 2015
App development has taken off in the last few years, making it increasingly difficult to stay on top of all the latest versions. To help all of you out, we here at MacNN are dedicated to sorting through new update releases, and highlighting some of the important ones here, in the relaunch of our App Update column. Today, we look at revisions to CopyQueue, ClamXav, Bloom, LibreOffice, Microsoft OneNote, and Posternio.
Shuffle, Nano, Touch to continue, but no obvious visible changes seen
An image buried inside the resources of iTunes 12.2 offers a surprising revelation to iPod fans: Apple's iPod lineup, which has seen diminishing sales for years, will get another -- though possibly final -- hurrah, with new color options and likely upgraded processors and storage. All three of the company's current iPod models -- the wearable Shuffle, the diminutive Nano, and the full-sized "iPhone with no phone," the iPod touch -- will see new colors, including strong shades of blue and pink, as well as the now-expected gold option.
Open Beats 1 streams discovered, work on Android devices
Android users do not have to wait until the Apple Music app heads to the platform in the fall before being able to listen to the Beats 1 station, some users have discovered. A number of unprotected live streams have been uncovered, allowing anyone with a suitable client to be able to listen to the stream uninterrupted, even on operating systems not yet supported by the service.
The MacNN staff look at today's massive litany of releases by Apple
It's that time again -- Apple has hit us all with a flood of releases, and leading the pack are Apple Music and Beats One. Join Managing Editor Mike, MacNN Editor Charles, and writer William for a discussion of all the hits, misses, and we discuss if we should keep the wheel in the sky turning for what's on tap, or if Apple's new offering is little more than a rainbow in the dark.
First QuickTime update in nearly three months focuses on security
In addition to an avalanche of updates ranging from major to security-patches-only, Apple has released QuickTime 7.7.7 for Windows, the first update to the multimedia technology since early April. The update fixes a clutch of security issues with the QT Media Foundation, which could allow a maliciously-crafted file to lead to an unexpected application termination or arbitrary code execution. The root cause of the issue, multiple memory corruption issues, were addressed through improved memory handling.
Garageband hits version 10.1 adds drummers, new loops, more
Apple continued with its cascade of updates on Tuesday with updates to iBooks Author (now at version 2.3) and Garageband (version 10.1), alongside an earlier update for iMovie (updated to v10.0.9). The Garageband update is the most significant of the three, bringing a wealth of new drummers, drum kits, and synthesizer patches, mostly focused on electronic dance music (EDM) and Hip Hop.
Update brings Apple Music, fixes to the venerable music player
Breaking: As predicted, Apple has just made iTunes 12.2 available for OS X users, as of 6PM ET. While not yet available through the iTunes update menu, the package can be seen and downloaded through the App Store's update tab. The software, which was expected earlier today to coincide with the launch of Beats 1 and Apple's paid music services, brings a revamped set of free and paid services to the music-management program, replacing iTunes Radio and making other minor interface changes to align with the iOS release.
Lack of update preventing Apple Music from arriving on Macs
[Update: iTunes 12.2 now released at 6PM ET] While iOS users are experiencing changes related to Apple Music, Mac users are also seeing things fall into place, but at a far slower pace. Before Mac users will be able to use Apple Music and listen to Beats 1, they will have to upgrade iTunes from the current version 12.1.2 to version 12.2 -- an update which is currently unavailable to download by users, and is conspicuous by its absence on a day when Apple has overloaded it servers with a plethora of major, minor, and security updates.
iMac only boots to safe mode, login issues and more
This week in the MacNN Forums, members assist Posting Junkie "sek929" with trying to get to the bottom of a problem he is having with an iMac that will only boot into safe mode. Today "ibook_steve" had some questions about logging into Apple Discussions and turned to the forums for answers.
iPads and iPods
Right now at Apple's online store, find great bargains on refurbished iPads and iPods. The refurbished 5th generation iPod touch with 16GB of storage can be had for only $149 after a $30 discount, while $159 will get a 4th gen. 32GB Touch. Priced at $199 is the refurbished 5th generation 32GB iPod touch in blue, pink or space gray. Also available is the 5th gen. 64GB Touch in yellow or space gray for $239.
Next version of Safari, coming in 10.11, will offer new features
Among a storm of major updates, Apple has also issues updated versions of Safari for the three versions of OS X currently supported: Mountain Lion (10.8), Mavericks (10.9), and Yosemite (10.10). In addition to the updated Safari versions (6.2.7, 7.1.7, and 8.0.7 respectively), the company also issued the first developer beta of the forthcoming Safari 9.0, which will accompany the release of OS X 10.11 this fall, and a pair of EFI updates.
App Update for June 30
App development has taken off in the last few years, making it increasingly difficult to stay on top of all the latest versions. To help all of you out, we here at MacNN are dedicated to sorting through new update releases, and highlighting some of the important ones here, in the relaunch of our App Update column. Today, we look at revisions to Pro Media Tools, Angband, Macgo Blu-ray Player, MKV2M4V, UninstallPKG, Pixave, and iMovie.
Virtual music storage locker hit with problems; workaround revealed
The launch on Tuesday of Apple Music appears to be wreaking havoc with existing users of iTunes Match, the company's virtual music cloud storage service. Reports beginning yesterday and worsening today indicate that users who have not or are unable to currently update their iOS version to the just-released 8.4, as well as Apple TV users, are seeing issues including duplicate entries for artists and playlists, inaccurate album art, and a general inability to download or stream songs.
New update excises troublesome DiscoveryD service, much more
Beats One streaming radio live, alongside Apple's new music service
[Updated with correction, lightening of server load in US] As expected, Apple has launched iOS 8.4, with an accompanying OS X 10.10.4 update. Alongside the software release, Apple has also fired up the Apple Music service and Beats One. Apple Music provides access to some 30 million tracks in the iTunes catalog, both for streaming and offline listenings. Music curation includes recommendations for songs and albums from experts, with playlists for various activities and song genres.
The downward spiral of the music business, a 5K iMac giveaway, and more
Episode 21 of The MacNN Podcast is now available! Join us for a very speedy hour as we talk about a great new contest where you can win a 5K Retina 27-inch iMac, the licensing kerfuffle with Apple Music that features a happy ending, more troubles for MacKeeper, the plaudits and perils of e-publishing, the trauma of having to send in a Mac for repair, and our picks for App(s) of the Week! Show notes after the jump.
App Update for June 29
App development has taken off in the last few years, making it increasingly difficult to stay on top of all the latest versions. To help all of you out, we here at MacNN are dedicated to sorting through new update releases, and highlighting some of the important ones here, in the relaunch of our App Update column. Today, we look at revisions to Ableton Live, Freeway Pro, Mac App Blocker, CuteDJ, Skip Tunes, and Typinator.
Virtual locker included with paid Apple Music, to expand to 100,000 songs
Through confirmations, now-deleted posts, and a series of tweets, Apple has revealed that iOS 8.4 will be released tomorrow, June 30, at 8AM PT (11AM ET), and SVP of Internet Software and Services Eddy Cue has clarified how iTunes Match and the paid Apple Music subscription service will work together. In addition, Senior Director of Apple Music (and former Beats CEO) Ian C. Rogers revealed that with the arrival of iOS 9, the cloud music locker both services share will expand to hold 100,000 or more songs.
New multitasking features inject new life into iPad
Although there have been some clues that Apple has been planning to introduce split-screen multitasking on the iPad, it was still something of a surprise to see the feature finally debut at WWDC. The feature will make its debut in iOS 9, which is due to officially land sometime in the fall, likely around the time we see the next generation of iPhones and iPads. Similar functionality can be found in Windows tablets and some Android tablets, so what is it like on the iPad Air 2?
Or, 'Does CNBC have a leg to stand on, regarding Apple Watch sales?'
In the UK, it's known as Betteridge's law of journalism: a headline that is a question can always be answered by the reader by the word 'no' regardless of editorial intent. Is Elvis really alive? No. Could this one simple technique make you a millionaire overnight? Take a wild guess. While you're at it, apply your guess to CNBC's article that's been headlined: "Is interest in the Apple Watch dissipating?"
Firing up a new column, celebrating the week in tech news
We hope your Sunday is going well so far. Today launches our new column about the stories that entertained us, informed us, or just plain tickled us. We're not just highlighting our own writing -- anything that we've discussed behind the scenes here at MacNN is fair game. Read on for thoughts on the events of the week in the tech world including more bad news for MacKeeper, a shotgun assault on a drone, and a major upgrade to a 2009 Mac Pro.
No response as of yet from breakdown engineer regarding claims
A recent critical teardown of Beats headphones claimed to shed some light on the "generic" nature of Beats headphones, including extra metal being inserted into the set to give the appearance of more quality than actually exists. However, a recent post mortem of the teardown sheds some doubt on the source of the original headphones, claiming that the set that was actually torn down was a Chinese knockoff of the popular audio brand.
App Update for June 26
App development has taken off in the last few years, making it increasingly difficult to stay on top of all the latest versions. To help all of you out, we here at MacNN are dedicated to sorting through new update releases, and highlighting some of the important ones here, in the relaunch of our App Update column. Today, we look at revisions to CrossOver, BirdFont, FotoMagico, AdwareMedic, RollerCoaster Tycoon 3 Platinum, and WebDrive.
Ordering now live in second-wave countries, stock appearing in US stores
Even as stock of the Apple Watch in first-wave countries like the US remains relatively constrained, Apple continued its expansion of the product by opening online ordering for the Apple Watch in nine new countries today, and announcing a further three would be able to begin selling the Watch on July 17. In addition to new ordering pages went live for Italy, Mexico, Singapore, South Korea, Spain, Switzerland and Taiwan, Apple said that the next round of debuts would start in mid-July with The Netherlands, Sweden, and Thailand.
monitor troubles, save preferences and more
This week in the MacNN forums, members discuss topics including monitor troubles and save preferences. One Fresh-Faced Recruit has turned to the forums this week expressing frustration with an external monitor that keeps displaying a "No Signal" message, and so far a solution has yet to be found. Mac Elite "rotuts" is trying to figure out how to save files to folders other than the default "documents" folder.
up to 26 percent off MacBook Pros
Today at Apple's online store, save up to $340 off on refurbished MacBook Pros. Starting at $829 is the refurbished 13.3-inch MacBook Pro with a 2.5GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM and 500GB hard drive which has been reduced by $270. A 26 percent price break drops the cost on the refurbished 13.3-inch MacBook Pro with a 2.4GHz Intel dual-core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM and 128GB of flash storage down to $879.
Apple Maps adds seven new cities to Flyover feature
Earlier this week, Apple expanded the Flyover feature of its Apple Maps service by adding six international and one North American city to the visual-overview feature, which combines aerial photography with computer-generated graphic enhancements to create 3D views of various locations. The new cities have been added to both the iOS and OS X version of Maps.
Second year of recognition brings spotlight on LGBT-themed media
A day after New York City's Stonewall Inn received official landmark status, Apple debuted a curated collection of apps and media in its iOS App Store celebrating the advances the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) community has made in recent years, as well as commemorating the 1969 riots at Stonewall that kicked off the modern pride movement. The company has a long history of publicly recognizing gay employees, stretching back to 1986.
Great resource adds collaboration and marking
You know that MacNN likes to go the extra mile and stress-test, even pummel every application that gets a Hands On review. It's not enough to tell us a list of features, we want to see that those features do what they say they will. It's partly diligence, partly that we've been fooled by Windows software before. Apple today updated its iTunes U educational service and iOS to version 3.0, and made some notable changes -- and this obviously requires that we join a university that uses the software so that we can fully partake of the semester-long new features.
Makes album exclusive, 'first time it has felt right' for streaming
Pop star Taylor Swift has relented in her mini-dispute with Apple over licensing fees (which will now be paid during the three-month free trial of the subscription Apple Music service) and is offering her hit album 1989 for streaming for the first time, in an exclusive for the forthcoming service, which launches June 30. In a series of tweets, Swift announced that it was simply "the first time it's felt right in my gut" to offer the album for streaming.