Saturday, October 31, 2015

Beats 1 Replays Require Paid Subscription

Earlier this year, I talked about how you could listen to a replay of Beats 1. However, it now appears that you need a paid subscription to listen to past shows. Thanks to Adam (@adrow) on Twitter for the tip!

Friday, October 30, 2015

New Apple TV Now Available at Apple Retail Stores

Today, you can buy a new Apple TV from an Apple Retail Store. Best Buy is also selling it today. Those who preordered it on Monday also received their Apple TVs today. A 32 GB Apple TV will cost $149 and a 64 GB Apple TV will cost $199.

Thursday, October 29, 2015


Today was National Cat Day and Uber got in on it in a really cool way. Between 11 AM and 3 PM in select cities, you could order a vehicle with 3 kittens in it that you can play with for 15 minutes. The car (as far as I know) won't take you anywhere. It costs $30 for the 15 minutes and the proceeds go to a local animal fund.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Walgreens Becomes First Apple Pay Loyalty Program

Implementing one of my most anticipated features for iOS 9, Walgreens is now supporting Apple Pay's new loyalty program. Although not fully implemented, it will essentially let you walk into a Walgreens, use Apple Pay to pay, and your Walgreens card will be sent with your credit card. No barcode scanning required. As for how this will work with Walgreen's acquisition of Rite Aid, I have no idea what will happen, but I assume Rite Aid will carry this over into their stores.

Image Credit: MacRumors

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Apple Releases iPhone 6s Ad Starring Bill Hader

Apple released another ad for the iPhone 6s today. This time starring Bill Hader. It shows him using the "Hey Siri" feature to have Siri read his unread emails. Siri reads him a spam email sent to his inbox asking for an investment from Prince Oseph (Don't try this at home kids!). He then replies with "Sign me up!" The video is embedded below.

Monday, October 26, 2015

New Apple TV Available to Order

You can now order a new Apple TV from the Apple Online Store. With paid shipping, customers can expect to see them anywhere between October 30th to November 3rd. With free shipping, they can expect to see them between November 2nd and November 4th. It costs $149 with 32 GB of storage and $199 GB of storage. I personally recommend buying the 64 GB model because Apple says that the 32 GB model can only hold "few apps and games" in addition to streaming. Accessories to the new Apple TV are also now being sold.

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Support Me On Instagram

Hi all. I don't normally do something like this, but I need your help. My chemistry teacher took a selfie with me saying that if the photo reached 100 likes, my class would get extra credit. Please help me accomplish this goal by liking the photo below (using Instagram). If it doesn't show up below, click here. There isn't a specific deadline for this, but the sooner the better. If you could spread the word, that'd be great too. Thanks for your support!

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Facebook Updates App With Fix For Major Battery Drain

Earlier this month, users complained that the Facebook app uses too much battery life. This affected many users, often being the most battery intensive app installed on their iOS devices (for a social networking app). Facebook has updated their app to fix this problem. If you've experienced any of these issues, they should be behind you.
"The first issue we found was a 'CPU spin' in our network code. A CPU spin is like a child in a car asking, 'Are we there yet? Are we there yet? Are we there yet?' with the question not resulting in any progress to reaching the destination. This repeated processing causes our app to use more battery than intended. The version released today has some improvements that should start making this better.
The second issue is with how we manage audio sessions. If you leave the Facebook app after watching a video, the audio session sometimes stays open as if the app was playing audio silently. This is similar to when you close a music app and want to keep listening to the music while you do other things, except in this case it was unintentional and nothing kept playing. The app isn't actually doing anything while awake in the background, but it does use more battery simply by being awake. Our fixes will solve this audio issue and remove background audio completely."
- Ari Grant, Facebook Engineering Manager 

Friday, October 23, 2015

Apple Watch Available At Target

After months of promises, Target has finally started to sell the Apple Watch. They will be sold at the same price as that of Apple. Currently, Apple Watch Sport and the regular Apple Watch are available. I don't expect them to sell the Apple Watch Edition anytime soon. They are available online or in-store.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Backwards Tab

If you use tab on a Mac to go through different text boxes, you can also go backwards through text boxes. Just hit shift and tab. For example, if you accidentally hit tab and want to go back to the previous tab, just use shift and tab. You'll go back to the previous text box. Try it out as it's kind of hard to describe without showing it directly. I hope this helps.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Back to the Future Day!

Happy Back to the Future Day! If you don't know, in the movie Back to the Future: Part 2, Marty McFly, the main protagonist of the trilogy, travels 30 years into the future with a DeLorean time machine. That day in the future was (Is? Will be?) October 21st, 2015 at 4:29 PM. That's today! Many fans have dubbed today as Back to the Future Day. There are many things the movie got right (Google Glass, hover boards, distracted humans, etc.) and many things it got wrong (Cubs winning World Series). Now, try telling Siri, "Happy Back to the Future Day." She'll respond with a variety of responses about the day.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

New Apple TV Orders and Shipping Info

Tim Cook revealed yesterday that the new Apple TV will start shipping by the end of next week. Apple will start taking orders for it Monday of next week. Mark your calendars, that's October 26th. The new Apple TV will cost $149 for 32 GB of storage and $199 for 64 GB of storage.

Monday, October 19, 2015

Steam Link and Mac OS X

The other day, I received a Steam Link, a device that streams Steam games to a TV, a few weeks ahead of its release date. This was part of a promotion for pre-order months in advance. I was pretty hyped to get it, but little did I know that OS X wasn't supported when I got it. According to the website, it was supposed to work with OS X, so I was confused. I don't own a PC (that works well anyways), so I was stuck here. At this point, I was ready to return it. Here's where things got interesting. Valve, creator of the Steam Link, is compensating early adopters who were affected with a copy of the Valve Complete Pack, a $99 value, for free! This consists of every game Valve has made since the late 1990's if I'm not mistaken. Here's the real kicker: affected users will also receive every game made by Valve in the future for free! Half-Life 3 confirmed! In addition, if you still choose to return the Steam Link, you can still keep the games! If only Nintendo did this whenever they screwed up (amiibos, N64 controller, Wii U in general, Mario Party 10, etc.). I'd be drowning in free stuff. So, the next time a Windows user makes fun of a Mac user for the Mac's inferior game library (No, not specs. That's a completely different paradigm.), make sure you show them your massively increased Steam library. Affected users should contact Steam support or check their emails and Steam libraries.

Sunday, October 18, 2015

"Ok Google" Knows More Than You Think

People who use Google's voice controlled "Ok Google" feature might be disturbed how Google saves these searches. Google actually has every voice search from "Ok Google" in the form of a recording. That's right, "Ok Google" keeps recordings of your voice when used for searching. Are we Google's senpai or something?

But don't worry, you can remove these recordings from your history. Whether Google will still have that recording in their servers after deletion is a mystery. After all, nothing on the internet is ever truly removed. Here's how to remove them. Go to the Voice & Audio Activity page. To delete them individually, check the boxes next to recordings you'd like to delete. Then, click delete at the top of the screen. To delete them all at once, click the three dots (menu icon) in the top right corner of the page, click Delete Options, select Advanced, select All Time from the dropdown menu, and click Delete. I hope this helps!

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Quality Program for MacBook Pro Display Issue

Apple has just launched a new quality program for MacBook Pros with Retina Displays affected by the delaminating of the anti-reflective coating found in MacBook Pro displays. Affected models would resemble the display shown below. Apple will replace the display of affected models at no cost within three years of the MacBook's original purchase date. To begin the process of getting the display replaced by Apple, either check your email for an email from Apple notifying that you're eligible, go to an Apple Store, or contact Apple directly.

Image Credit: MacRumors

Friday, October 16, 2015

Apple Store 3D Touch Table

In only the flagship San Francisco and New York Apple Stores, Apple has a new 3D Touch table. It basically shows an image of a surface of water, while the iPhones on it show an interactive fish. Force touching the screen creates ripple effects on the water. To see what I mean, check out the video below (Credit Grate App).

Thursday, October 15, 2015

iPhone 6s Ad - 3D Touch

Today, Apple released a new ad for the iPhone 6s centered around the 3D Touch feature. It shows how you can use Peek and Pop to preview links, flight information, and more. The video is embedded below.
"This is iPhone 6s. Not much has changed, except it feels different. Now you press lightly to peek and deeper to pop. It changes how easily you can peek a flight, check a post, search for dinner - ooh, you guys are going to love that place. You can find a getaway easier - Yeah, go there. And find music easier - wait, are you listening to your own song? So pretty much everything you do feels different and that's what's changed."

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Magic Mouse 2, Magic Trackpad 2, and Magic Keyboard

Apple has released new "Magic Accessories" that are now rechargeable via Lightning cable (fully charged in two hours; fast charge in two minutes). They can also paired via a Lightning cable, similar to accessories with a small USB dongle. They all have a subtle redesign in some way. You can buy them from the Apple Store.

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

New iMacs

Today, Apple released new iMacs. The 21-inch model now features a Retina 4K Display, perfect for your new iPhone 6s. Other than that, both the 21-inch and 27-inch models are just refreshes with new Intel processors. However, through custom parts, the 27-inch iMac can be used with 64 GB of RAM. You can buy the new iMacs from the Apple Store today.

Monday, October 12, 2015

Apple Pay Coming To KFC and Chili's

I forgot to mention that full Apple Pay integration will also be coming to KFC and Chili's. I'm not sure if they have any rewards programs, but if they do, they'll probably be getting the same support that Starbucks will get. What's cool is that Chili's will have a small Apple Pay-enabled kiosk that will enable people to pay with Apple Pay from the table and leave without needing to pay an actual person. Let's hope we see more restaurant chains doing this in the near future!

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Apple Pay Coming To Starbucks

Apple Pay is coming to Starbucks, and here's why you should care. At Apple's WWDC event, whenever they talk about Passbook, Wallet, or Apple Pay, it's always a disappointment to see what they talked about isn't available, or at least doesn't function as advertised, at launch with the launch of the next iOS release later that year. However, Starbucks is going to prove this wrong with a fast rollout (hopefully) next year. Let me explain... At WWDC, Apple revealed that you'd be able to hold your iPhone (or Apple Watch) near a compatible NFC reader, and it would pull up any rewards card or coupons for that store. Then, you'd use Touch ID to beam that info to the terminal and it'd be applied to your transaction. Sounds pretty cool, right? Now my hope is that Starbucks will implement this into their system, allowing users to use their Starbucks gift cards to earn Starbucks rewards all via NFC and Touch ID. That's my hope anyways... Apple Pay VP, Jennifer Bailey, says it will support Starbucks Rewards, and she did brag about this feature at WWDC, so I think that's a reliable source. However, we have seen other companies go back on their word to support Apple's services (Adobe, Fitbit, etc.). Anyways, let's hope we get this feature.

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Peek and Pop

With 3D Touch on the iPhone 6s, you can use the new features Peek and Pop. You can use this is in the Messages app (with convos), Mail app (with emails), links, and more! To use Peek and Pop on an eligible item, just press hard on it to Peek and press even harder to Pop. Peek gives you a preview of your content and Pop lets you view it in full screen. In Peek mode, you can swipe up to reveal options, like quick replies in Messages. I hope this helps!

Friday, October 9, 2015

Buy iPhone 6s SIM-Free

If you want to buy iPhone 6s without a SIM card, now is the time! You can buy an iPhone without a carrier from the Apple Online Store. This is useful for people who travel to different countries a lot. It's also good for people who want to choose their own carrier and those who don't want to worry about commitments with carriers. You do have to pay full price since it's not with a contract. You can buy a SIM-free iPhone 6s from the Apple Online Store.

Image Credit: MacRumors

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Amazon and Warranties

If you buy accessories from Amazon, here's a little life hack. The other day, I had one of my wall chargers malfunction, so I contacted customer service and I was able to register my warranty with my Amazon order number and find out when I purchased it from my Amazon order history (think digital receipts). I find that a lot of accessory manufacturers that sell on Amazon use Amazon order numbers to activate warranties and to find orders. With this, I was able to get a replacement very easily and frustration-free. I hope this helps!

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

How To Remove Live Photos

If you took a photo on your iPhone 6s and you wanted to remove the Live Photo (video portion) of it to, for example, save space, here's how to. Just find the photo you want to remove it from, select it, tap "Edit," and tap the circle icon in one of the corners of the screen (depending on how your phone is orientated). This will remove the Live Photo part of the photo. I hope this helps.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Disney Artists Try Out iPad Pro

Disney animators were sent some iPad Pros and Apple Pencils today. They got to try drawing on it and so far they were very impressed. For any aspiring artists out there, apparently, Disney artists used Procreate and Paper by Fiftythree as their test for the Apple Pencil (of course, those are apps that have been updated to work with iPad Pro). Anyways, it looks like becoming an animator for Disney has some perks.

Monday, October 5, 2015

Apple Watch Hermès Collection Now Available

Apple Watch Hermès, Apple Watch's first collaboration with another watch maker, is now available in select Apple Stores and Hermès retail locations. What makes these watches so cool in my opinion is the custom, exclusive watch face that comes pre-installed on the watch. These watches come in three styles: Single Tour, Double Tour, and Cuff. All of these come with the regular Apple Watch (Stainless Steel). It even comes with a custom orange-ish box. These are only available in stores.

Sunday, October 4, 2015

The Best Way to Use Siri

Although Apple is pushing the "Hey Siri" command, I personally thing the best way to activate and use Siri is still through the home button (at least when you're holding it or if it's in close proximity). Just hold down the home button, talk, and then release the home button. Think of it like a walkie-talkie or an intercom. This saves a lot of time with Siri as you don't have to wait for the phone to detect the end of your speech. I hope this helps!

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Apple TV Universal Search API

The next Apple TV will allow users to search for media across multiple search engines, like HBO and Netflix. There are currently five search engines (iTunes, Netflix, Hulu, Showtime, and HBO), but Apple plans to make an API for other services to have their search integrated.
"At launch we’ll have iTunes, Netflix, Hulu, Showtime, and HBO — so we’ll have five major inputs into universal search initially. But we’re also opening an API, so that others can join in. I think that many, many people will want to be in that search. And that’s great for users. Think about your experience today. Even if you’re fortunate enough to have the content you want to watch in an app, you sometimes don’t remember exactly where that show is, so you’re going to Netflix or Hulu or Showtime. You shouldn’t have to do that. It should be very simple."
- Tim Cook 

Friday, October 2, 2015

Apple TV and Bluetooth Controllers

While the next Apple TV supports Bluetooth controllers, it can only support two at a time, in addition to the Apple TV remote and iPhone controllers. This was a major letdown to many developers, including one who wanted to make an eight-player party game and purchased a bunch of MFi controllers. I do like the idea that iPhone can be used as a controller because everyone has one and they don't have problems of other controllers, but many gamers do prefer a controller with physical buttons. Limiting those controllers and pushing Apple's limits what games on Apple TV can do and leaves the market strictly casual.
"Well, this is a bit of a bummer. We just got word from one of the developers who were lucky enough to win the Apple TV dev kit lottery (Who we're not naming because we don't want to cause more Apple TV NDA drama!) who raced out and bought a ton of MFi controllers with the hopes of making a 8 player party game. These hopes were quickly dashed as they realized that the new Apple TV will only connect to two external Bluetooth devices at once, along with the included remote."

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Amazon Will Stop Selling Apple TV and Google Chromecast

Amazon will stop selling Apple TV and Chromecast from it's online store on October 29th. For those who don't know, Amazon has it's own TV set-top boxes yearning for some of your TV's real-estate, Fire TV and Fire TV Stick. Amazon's reason is that they don't support Amazon Prime video.
"Over the last three years, Prime Video has become an important part of Prime. It's important that the streaming media players we sell interact well with Prime Video in order to avoid customer confusion."
 While that may seem like an almost legitimate response, since Roku and other devices that support Prime Video remain on the store, I think the real reason is that they are competitor products in general. And that's not good for business if your selling another company's product. That'd be like Microsoft selling iPads to customers who trade in their Surface. After all, Prime Video is not an important part of Prime, Prime Video is not a deal breaker for many, and the lack of Prime Video on a media player would, for the most part, not cause customer confusion. Have you seen the Amazon Prime ads? They all advertise Prime Video and Prime Kindle Books instead of the flagship feature of free two-day shipping. It's because they've been failures and no one's using them. Anyways, that's my rant. If you want the next generation Apple TV, don't expect Prime Video.