Reported iOS 13 Features Coming

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iOS 13: Dark Mode, detachable panels, Safari and Mail, more – 9to5Mac:

Apple is expected to unveil iOS 13, the next major version of the iPhone and iPad operating system, at its annual Worldwide Developers Conference, which kicks off on June 3rd. Now, people familiar with the development of the operating system have shared exclusive details with 9to5Mac. Read on for new details about what to expect.

Dark Mode and Multitasking;

First, the long-awaited Dark Mode is finally coming to the iPhone and iPad with iOS 13. There will be a system-wide Dark Mode that can be enabled in Settings, including a high contrast version, similar to what’s already available on macOS. Speaking of macOS, iPad apps that run on the Mac using Marzipan will finally take advantage of the Dark Mode support on both systems.

There are many changes coming to iPad with iOS 13, including the ability for apps to have multiple windows. Each window will also be able to contain sheets that are initially attached to a portion of the screen, but can be detached with a drag gesture, becoming a card that can be moved around freely, similar to what an open-source project called “PanelKit” could do.

These cards can also be stacked on top of each other, and use a depth effect to indicate which cards are on top and which are on the bottom. Cards can be flung away to dismiss them.

Guilherme Rambo and Steve Troughton-Smith are well respected and trusted developers and their ability to poke around with source code lends huge credence to this report. Apparent cosmetic changes such as Dark Mode and improvements to the Reminders and Mails apps do not sound nearly as big when compared to the “multiple windows” for each app mention – can’t wait to see this in action. ”Many changes” sounds like big things are coming.

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Disney offers first look at Disney+ streaming service

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Disney offers first look at Disney+ streaming service – 9to5Mac:

As anticipated, Disney this evening offered the closest look at yet at the upcoming Disney+ streaming service. The company previewed the standalone Disney+ application, while also offering details on bundling and more.

First, Disney teased that users will “likely” be able to secure a discount if they subscribe to some combination of its three streaming services – including Disney+, ESPN+, and Hulu. The idea of a bundle with Hulu is particularly interesting. Unfortunately, however, Disney did not go into details about bundling, with executive Kevin Mayer only saying that bundling discounts “are likely” when Disney+ launches later this year.

Most notably, however, Disney offered the first look at the actual Disney+ application. In terms of design, it’s very basic and will be familiar to anyone who has used a streaming TV app in the past. Users will be able to quickly jump through different content, recommendations, and more.

Interestingly, Disney did not make mention of specific platform details for Disney+. Instead, it simply said that the Disney+ application will be available on smart TVs, phones, tablets, and computers. Roku and PS4 were both specifically teased, but there was no mention of other connected set-top boxes – such as Apple TV. [Update: A slide shown later in the presentation clearly shows an Apple TV.]

In terms of features, Disney+ will support custom profiles – with support for designing your own avatar using iconic Disney characters. You’ll also be able to download Disney+ content for offline viewing.

Disney also teased some of the content that will be available on Disney+. That includes every Pixar films (as well as Pixar theatrical shorts), WandaVision, Falcon and Winter Soldier, Frozen 2, and much, much more.

The launch of Disney+ comes as Apple is also planning to launch Apple TV+, which will be the home of its original TV shows and movies. Disney+ will house a wide array of Disney content, including Pixar, Marvel, and Star Wars content. Disney’s iconic “vault” content is also expected to be available on the service.

Disney+ will launch on November 12th of this year for just $6.99 per month – or $69.99 per year if you pay annually.

$6.99 per month is a good price for a rich catalogue of titles and content. Remember, Disney bought out Fox and/or owns Hulu, Marvel, ESPN, Pixar, including rights to Star Wars – the list is growing.

macOS 10.15 to include standalone media apps, splitting iTunes

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macOS 10.15 to include standalone media apps, splitting iTunes – 9to5Mac:

During the “It’s show time” event in late March, Apple announced that the TV app would be coming to the Mac soon. This naturally sparked discussions about whether Apple would be bringing its other media apps to the Mac, finally splitting up iTunes into distinct applications.

Fellow developer Steve Troughton-Smith recently expressed confidence about some evidence found indicating that Apple is working on new Music, Podcasts, and perhaps Books apps for macOS, to join the new TV app.

I’ve been able to independently confirm that this is true. On top of that, I’ve been able to confirm with sources familiar with the development of the next major version of macOS – likely 10.15 – that the system will include standalone Music, Podcasts, and TV apps, but it will also include a major redesign of the Books app. We also got an exclusive look at the icons for the new Podcasts and TV apps on macOS.

Finally.

Ming-Chi Kuo: 31.6″ Apple Display Coming

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Apple 6k display

Kuo: Mini-LED 31.6″ Apple display by Q3, iPad + MacBook 2021 – 9to5Mac:

TF Securities’ Ming-Chi Kuo has released a report which lays out Apple’s product interest in mini-LED technology. Kuo says that Apple will launch a 31.6-inch (6K resolution) external display in the second or third quarter of 2019 and feature a mini-LED backlight.

WWDC might also see the new Mac Pro make an appearance to go along with this monitor.

BBEdit Returns to the Mac App Store

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BBEdit Returns to the Mac App Store After 4+ Year Absence – MacStories:

Beginning today, BBEdit 12 is available for download through the Mac App Store. BBEdit was previously listed for purchase through the Mac App Store, but famously left the store in October 2014. Last year, however, Apple announced on-stage at WWDC that BBEdit would be returning to the new Mac App Store in the near future, and that day has finally arrived.

A renowned Mac app that is a great addition to the Mac App Store.

[Update: now live in UK] Apple Music launches on Amazon Alexa Devices

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[Update: now live in UK] Apple Music launches on Amazon Fire TV, coming to Echo for UK users soon – 9to5Mac:

Update: Amazon Echo customers in UK & Ireland can now use Apple Music. Open the Alexa app and go to Settings -> Music -> Link New Service to get started.

Great news for us UK users.

Apple cuts price of HomePod worldwide

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Homepod price cut

Apple cuts price of HomePod worldwide, now $299 at the US Apple Store – 9to5Mac:

Apple has officially lowered the price of the HomePod worldwide. In the price has fallen from $349 to $299, breaking the $300 level. HomePod has seen promotional discounts at many third party retailers (eg: it’s $279 right now at Best Buy) over its lifespan, but now Apple has dropped the smart speaker’s standard list price.

This price cut represents a roughly 15% drop and seemingly applies to every region, not just the US. The UK price has fallen from £319 to £279.

I welcome the price drop from Apple but I do wonder how it effects their own margin on the product, especially when John Gruber alluded that it made a loss recently.

Should you buy AirPods 2 or Powerbeats Pro?

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Should you buy AirPods 2 or Powerbeats Pro? Here’s how Apple’s truly wireless earbuds compare – 9to5Mac:

If you know that AirPods fit your ears and you value their small, versatile size and charging case, they are a great choice for truly wireless earbuds. They’re sleek and quick to charge, offer optional wireless charging, and are cheaper than the Beats alternative.

On the other hand, if you plan on exercising and doing anything that requires more than 5 hours of battery life, Powerbeats Pro are the way to go. They can last for up to 9 hours on a charge, and you can get nearly 5 hours of charge in 15 minutes.

Powerbeats Pro are also far more customizable in terms of fit, with four included ear tip sizes and adjustable earhooks. If color is important to you, Powerbeats Pro come in four unique colors: white, black, ivory, and navy. AirPods 2 only come in white.

Powerbeats Pro will be available in May for $250. AirPods, however, are considerably more affordable – especially if you opt for the version without the charging case. AirPods 2 start at $159, while the Wireless Charging Case bumps the price to $179.

Vlad Savov thinks the iPhone’s camera used to be a selling point

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The iPhone’s camera used to be a selling point – The Verge:

There are many good reasons to own an iPhone: your social life might revolve around iMessage, you might value Apple’s emphasis on privacy, or perhaps you appreciate the quality of Apple’s displays and software experience. But the one thing that once exemplified Apple’s lead over the Android chasing pack, the iPhone’s camera, is no longer top of the list of reasons to want an iPhone. The iPhone camera has fallen behind, and it’s now something users tend to accept rather than anticipate.

Google came out with the Pixel camera in 2016 and raised the bar of expectation for mobile photography a couple of notches above the iPhone. HTC responded with the brilliant cameras in the U11 and U11 Plus. Then Huawei introduced a terrific night mode on the P20 Pro last year, besting the Pixel, only for Google to respond with Night Sight, which was a revolution for nighttime imaging. And now, Huawei has returned with an even better P30 Pro that steps ahead of Night Sight. Come the autumn, the Pixel 4 is likely to push us even further into the age of unbelievable computational photography.

Where is the iPhone?

The technology industry is fast paced with competitors working on new designs and technologies all the time that push each other to better not only  themselves but for their customers and with that in mind Vlad acknowledges that;

This could always be the quiet before the storm of new groundbreaking designs and innovations from Apple. I’ve been covering this company long enough to not be surprised by its ability to outdo everyone else when it really wants to. The AirPods, for instance, haven’t changed in large part because they were so far ahead of their time when they were first released.

Apple Watch ‘prolonged my life’ by spotting deadly heart illness just days after new ECG feature launched

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Apple Watch ‘prolonged my life’ by spotting deadly heart illness just days after new ECG feature launched, gadget owner reports:

A MAN’S life may have been saved by taking an Apple Watch ECG just days after the feature launched in Europe.

An Apple Watch owner was reportedly able to detect signs of Atrial Fibrillation – a heart illness that can cause deadly strokes – using the gadget.

The Apple Watch can perform an ECG that detects signs of AFib, a potentially deadly heart condition
Apple added the new ECG feature to detect AFib on the Apple Watch Series 4 late last year.

And just last week, Apple finally launched the feature in the UK and Europe, after getting approval from the EU.

Now one customer has seemingly used his Apple Watch to detect the condition, which may otherwise have been missed.

Dr Michael Spehr, of Germany’s FAZ newspaper, received an email from a reader explaining that the Apple Watch correctly alerted him to his previously undiscovered condition.

An apparent Apple Watch customer reported that his life may have been saved by his smartwatch
In screenshots of the email, the customer explains that he initially thought the feature was “for hypochondriacs” but decided to “try it out, just for fun”.

But the Apple Watch was “constantly” reporting Atrial Fibrillation.

“Never noticed anything before,” the customer wrote.

“Also a doctor friend said: do not worry, probably just a measurement error!

“But nevertheless I visited my physician, a 12-channel ECG was taken, the physician weighed his head deliberately and said: ‘The watch is right’.”

This is the single biggest reason to upgrade to Apple Series Watch 4 – potentially life-changing.