Tag - Browser
On Wednesday, Apple unveiled a new "Safari Technology Preview" version of its default browser, designed to help developers and testers check out improvements and changes in the next major version, which is likely to be included with the future OS X 10.12 (which itself may be renamed later this year). The standalone app, which can be downloaded freely, works alongside the existing Safari, and is able to use bookmarks and favorites inherited from the normal Safari without interference, and even be set as the default browser.
Hackers and security researchers have earned $460,000 in total in cash prizes, for successfully attacking browsers in the regularly-held Pwn2Own competition. Successful attacks against Apple Safari, Microsoft Edge, and Google Chrome, as well as Adobe Flash, rewarded the teams behind the breaches with large sums of money, and is an indicator the ongoing battle to secure end users from online criminals isn't going to die down anytime soon.
Today's Pointers is one of those where our aim is not just to help you leverage more out of the apps and services you are already using, but instead to get you to change -- just a teeny tiny bit -- your established habits or workflow, if only in a minimal way. It may seem a bit ironic, but whatever web browser you use now, however much you like it, and however rarely you may encounter web-based problems -- we suggest you use that browser to download a second, different browser. Reasons to follow.
Maybe every app is really someone's personal preferences made flesh, or at least made pixels, and a hit is just when their needs match up with those of many customers. Internet 1.0 is its own developer's idea of the perfect web browser, and there's a chance it's going to be yours too -- but, unfortunately, not a very great chance.
Microsoft has ended support for a number of prominent products earlier this week, as the software giant tries to push its users towards newer and more secure versions of the same items. On Tuesday, Microsoft culled mainstream support for Internet Explorer 7, Internet Explorer 8, Internet Explorer 9, and Internet Explorer 10, just as it warned in 2014, with some support for the aging Windows 8 operating system also dropped by Microsoft at the same time.
Firefox 1.1 is now available for free on iOS and it brings you, er, um, well. Give us a minute. There must be something. Got it. Firefox is -- no, that's not it. Hand on heart, all we can think of is that if you're a fan of Firefox on the Mac, you'll enjoy having something that looks and works like it on your iPhone and iPad -- just don't think that its equivalent to Firefox on the desktop.
[Updated with news of new iOS 9.1 beta] Ahead of the release of OS X 10.11 El Capitan, Apple has released its latest major Safari for Mac update, boosting the browser to version 9.0, for both Yosemite (OS X 10.10) and El Capitan (10.11) users. Safari's earlier supported versions for Mavericks and Mountain Lion are also likely to see minor updates released later for compatibility reasons. In addition, Apple on Wednesday released another minor update for iOS 9, bringing it to v9.0.2, and unveiled a third developer and public beta of iOS 9.1.
Developer Marco Arment has, after just two days of availability, pulled his iOS 9 ad-blocking browser Peace from the App Store, and will offer refunds for those who purchased it. The app will continue to work for those who obtained it during its brief period of availability, but will not be updated. The program relied upon a database used by OS X ad tracker, Ghostery, and blocked all ads without exceptions -- which ultimately led to Arment's decision to pull it.
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WhatsApp now handles over 100M calls daily
WhatsApp is celebrating that it is being used for over 100 million calls every day. In a brief notice, the Facebook-owned messaging platform advises the voice-calling feature it rolled out to its users last year now deals with an average of over 1,100 calls initiated per second. Earlier this year, it increased the security of its calls and other messages, by introducing end-to-end encryption on all platforms. http://bit.ly/292HqCX
Adele's '25' album now streaming
Recording artist Adele has "pulled a Kanye" after saying that her current album "25" would not be available for streaming. The seven-month-old record, which has yielded a number of hit singles, is now available for streaming on all the major streaming services, such as Apple Music and Spotify, as of today in most major markets, with worldwide distribution to come. Reportedly, the singer had demanded streaming be limited to paid subscribers -- a condition that has hurt some streamers with artists, who aren't paid royalties for free or trial listens . Apple pays performers its normal royalty rates during its free trial, avoiding the issue -- and having repeated success in both signing up exclusives and placing those exclusives into the top of the charts. http://ti.me/28U7NOu
SanDisk iXpand case has battery, storage
A new iPhone 6 and iPhone 6s case from SanDisk appears to be the "holy grail" of accessories: a stylish and protective case that offers both extra storage as well as the option of extra battery power as well. The iXpand Memory case offers either 32GB, 64GB, or 128GB of additional storage incorporated into the case, and an optional add-on battery pack (sold separately) adds up to an extra day or more of charge. Through the associated iXpand app, camera photos and videos can be automatically stored on the extra storage, optionally password-protected, The cost for the case is (in order of storage capacity) $60, $100, and $130. The battery pack's release data has not yet been announced, but the add-on should retail for an additional $30. http://bit.ly/291epHu
Fifth Hong Kong store to open June 30
The 46th official Apple store in what the company calls the "Greater China" region will open at 10AM local time in Hong Kong's New Town Plaza in the Sha Tin district on Thursday, June 30, according to a new page on Apple's retail website. Despite slowing growth due to economic turmoil in China, the country is still Apple's fastest-growing market. The new story will be the fifth for Hong Kong, a lucrative market for Apple thanks to the high concentration of wealth there and a thriving "gray" market. Normal store hours for the new store will be 10AM to 10PM every day. http://apple.co/291diaT
Apple Music bug bites very short songs
There appears to be a reproducible bug in the current version of iTunes -- version 12.4.1, running on OS X 10.11.5, both the current non-beta versions of the respective software -- that causes a streamed song to become "stuck" in endless buffering if the streamed item just before this happened was 60 seconds or less in length. The problem appears to stem from code in iTunes that signals the next track to start downloading one minute before the currently-playing track is done, and thus songs shorter than one minute don't trigger the download. Locally-stored music is unaffected by the bug, and the problem does not appear to exist in either the macOS Sierra developer beta or versions of iTunes earlier than 12.4, and does not affect the iOS Music app at all. http://bit.ly/291cN0l
Walmart Pay expands to 15 states
Walmart, one of the key progenitors of the failed CurrentC mobile payment system that was distinguished from Apple Pay by its ability to collect and share customer financial and buying data among its participants, has expanded the soft rollout of its alternative solution "Walmart Pay" to an additional 15 US states following a pilot program in Arkansas and Texas last month. Walmart continues to resist adding Apple Pay. The system, built into the Walmart app for iOS and Android, works with a complicated system of the camera scanning a purchase code at the register, then generating a QR code which is then scanned by the register. The system is available now in Alabama, Georgia, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, North Carolina, North Dakota, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Virginia, and Washington, DC. http://apple.co/28SqZfu
Amazon refreshes entry-level Kindle
Amazon has added a new Kindle to its ebook reader range, one that is thinner and lighter than the previous entry-level model. Offering a six-inch 167-dpi touchscreen display, a doubled 4GB of storage, and an option for a white casing, the new model also adds in the ability to export highlights and notes to an email account as a PDF. Two versions of the all-new Kindle are available, priced at $80 including "Special Offers" and $100 without. http://amzn.to/28Q4c3R