Every time Apple ships a new phone or releases a new version of iOS the first thing most pundits check is battery life. And the news usually isn’t good, meaning that it’s about the same as it was in the previous version, or worse. During international travel, especially when one is on his own, a dead phone can be a very disconcerting thing. Apple’s battery challenges have created an entire market for external batteries to keep their kit going. I’ll comment on external batteries in a moment, but first...
For an interesting take on how two massively successful corporations operate, just take a look at Microsoft and Amazon. Both companies offer apps that rely upon users buying a subscription. When Microsoft released their Office suite for the iPad, they made it free, but users needed to buy an Office 365 subscription to access premium features. Amazon just bought the comic book reading app Comixology which also lets users buy and subscribe to new comic releases using the app. This is where the similarities end.
The rumblings began 10 days ago when Nike, as reported by CNET, laid off 70–80 percent of the employees working on their Nike FuelBand, one of the more popular fitness trackers. Plus, they acknowledged they would be stopping development of the hardware side of fitness tracking, though indicated they planned to continue selling the second-generation FuelBand SE. That move raised lots of eyebrows, and some even speculated that Apple's rumored iWatch was a factor. Then, last week GeekTime reported that Apple and Nike are gearing up for an announcement this fall of a "smart band." The website claims to have received this information from two sources in Cupertino, where Apple is located. According to the report, "Apple is looking to launch a smart band toward the end of this year whose collection of sensors will be able to be used not only to monitor the activity of the wearer, but also to operate other devices as a gestural controller."
If only Touch ID would work! Kamira/Shutterstock
Touch ID is so very convenient, allowing you to keep your phone secure while eliminating the need to enter your passcode every time you unlock your iPhone. And because you don't need to enter your passcode every time, you can use a longer, more secure passcode without any extra hassle, thus increasing your iPhone's security as well.
Touch ID is so convenient. Except when it isn't.
Because there are always those times when it just won't read your fingerprint, no matter what position your finger is in; and after multiple failed tries you are forced to enter a passcode to unlock the phone. If you have an extra-secure passcode, the inconvenience is multiplied.
At least, this was my experience until our CEO David Averbach showed me this cool trick that resulted in Touch ID working for me every time:
Last week Apple posted a new ad on their YouTube channel showing the amazing range of things an iPhone 5s can be used for, from making music and videos to launching model rockets and controlling stage lighting. The ad is reminiscent of earlier iPad commercials. The background music is "Gigantic" by the Pixies. The tagline of the ad is "You're more powerful than you think." I always enjoy watching their ads.
On my recent trips to London and Washington D.C., I had the opportunity to review several pieces of Briggs and Riley luggage. I found them all superbly crafted and well-suited for the life of the commuter. The lifetime warranty on all bags includes repair coverage even for damage caused by an airline (but it does not include cosmetic damage). Each bag includes a unique serial number so it can be registered, eliminating the need to find original proof of purchase should the bag ever need repair.
Many people don't realize that when they install an app onto their iDevice that by default, it's data is added to their iCloud backup. I didn't realize this until very recently and I've had an iPhone since November 2012!
Every iDevice user gets 5 GB of free iCloud storage from Apple. This is not 5 GB per iDevice but 5 GB per Apple ID. If you have an iPad and an iPhone, like I do, where you are using the same Apple ID, the cloud storage is shared. The problem with this default backup setting, is that unbeknownst to you, your storage could be eaten up with app data that doesn't need to be backed up.
on Wednesday, a report on AppleInsider citing a Japanese blog said that the iPhone 6 will have curved edges.: That is, both a curved casing and curved glass. The blog is known to have generally reliable sources, so this rumor may have credence. And to help visualize what the iPhone 6 would look like with curved edges and glass, you can see some great renderings by Martin Hajek on the French website Nowhereelse.fr. The renderings show rounded corners and the glass of the display wraps slightly around the edge. In addition to the curved edges, the report says the back of the iPhone 6 will differ from the 5 and 5s, in that it will no longer have the glass-covered antenna windows seen on those models.
Power. You can never have enough. Just ask any president, king, or dictator. That's why I always try to have a spare battery charger or battery case plus the necessary cables. But it can be a pain to carry everything around, and you have to remember everything. Last week, our family stayed in a hotel and my daughter left her charger and cable plugged into the wall in the hotel room. Those Lightning cables aren't cheap!
Summer is upon us again, and it’s time to shape up. We’ve got four weeks before Memorial Day and I’m here to show you how your iPhone can help whip you into shape before the festive weekend that kicks off summer. Now, next year at this time, we’ll have Healthbook for iOS8, but we still need to take care of 2014, and trust me, there are apps for that. Week one we need to focus on eating healthy, kicking some bad habits which may have crept up over winter, and getting enough sleep. Don’t worry, I plan to take this journey myself and I’ll update you ever step of the way.
I'll be honest, I don't think I've used a scientific calculator since college. But my teenage daughter uses one every time she does her math homework. The problem is that she's constantly losing her calculator. On the other hand, she has never once lost her phone. I suspect that her priorities in this matter are similar to those of most teenagers. That's why it's so great that the iPhone has a scientific calculator for backup.
Game Centered features roundups and in-depth reviews of the best in iOS games and related gaming news. Among the App Store’s myriad games, it’s all too easy to overlook some of the greats. Each installment of Game Centered will take a closer look at a select few worthy of special recognition. This week we'll take a look at some of the newest fast-paced, adrenaline-fueled action games to hit the Apple App Store.
This is the official announcement of the iPhone life Biweekly Giveaway! Be sure to enter the giveaway at iphoneLife.com/giveaways to win prizes, which we'll announce May 5th! We are raffling off tons of great accessories for FREE.
Here's how it works: Every other Friday we will announce the prizes we're giving away through iphonelife.com, Facebook, Twitter, and Google+. To enter the giveaway, go to iphoneLife.com/giveaways and tell your friends to enter too! On the following Monday morning, we will randomly select the winners. If you win an app, we will email you the promo code to redeem the app for free. If you win an accessory, send us your address and we will mail it to you.
This weeks featured items are:
As new iOS apps flood the App Store every day — recently topping 1,000,000 — we know it’s tough to tell which ones are worth their salt. But thanks to our Weekly Scoop, you can have the best for free! Here you’ll find a weekly roundup of the coolest apps free or at a discount for a limited-time only. Each week features the best and brightest from websites like Free App Report, AppsGoneFree, appsfire, and more.
Hurry! Get 'em while they’re hot!
Apple learned a lot from their underperforming Mobile Me service, and doubled down on the data center to support iCloud. Apple's cloud service handles iOS backups, iMessages, notes, music, videos, photos, iWork documents, Siri, FaceTime, and more; and for the most part, it performs without downtime.
Here's a good reason to include an up-to-date address for every entry in Contacts: You can then use Maps to quickly get directions to the location of any person or business in Contacts (And set location reminders!)
This year at CES I was able to meet a brand that was completely new to me. I immediately fell in love with the sparkles, texture, and durability I saw. Cellairis carries iPhone and iPad cases, portable chargers, headphones, speakers, and screen protectors. The products I am loving right now are their cases. Cellairis has cases for everyone: moms, dads, professionals, fashionistas, tweens and teens... like I said, everyone. Here are some of my favorites, but don't let me limit you—you should check out the Cellairis line for yourself!
Customers loved the EverDock by FŪZ so much that they wouldn't let up until the creators relented and created a mobile version (called the EverDock Go) that will snug into the cupholder of your vehicle. Of course, it's on Kickstarter, so go give your support and love if you happen to be one of the fanatics who absolutely need to dock your phone 24/7. Though they have already met the Kickstart goal, you can still grab some of the gear for pre-order pricing of $35 and up (ships in September 2014). Read on for more specifics from the press release:
Apple released their results for the March quarter yesterday after the market closed, and the news was all good, sending the stock up 7 percent in after-hours trading. Not only did Apple's quarterly results beat Wall Street's most optimistic estimates, Apple announced several stock-related moves that thrilled investors: an unusual 7-for-1 stock split, an increase in the quarterly dividend, and an increase in their stock buyback program. Apple's results set a record for a March quarter. Analysts were expecting Apple to report $43.5 billion in revenue, but Apple handily exceeded that, coming in at $45.6 billion. The iPhone led the way, with Apple selling 43.7 million iPhones, well above Wall Street's estimate of 38.5 million. Strong iPhone sales were attributed in part to strong demand in China and emerging markets—where there remains a lot of potential for growth.
Do you have an idea for an app but lack the programming knowledge to begin building it? In this weekly blog series, I will take you, the beginner app developer, step by step through the process of creating apps for the iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad. Join me each week on this adventure and you will experience how much fun turning your app ideas into reality can be! This is part 40 of the series. If you are just getting started, check out the beginning of the series here.
One of the hottest technologies to come out of iOS 7 is iBeacon. In case you haven't heard, iBeacon is Apple's trademark for what it calls "a new class of low-powered, low-cost transmitters that can notify nearby iOS 7 devices of their presence." This new technology solves one of the biggest problems with Location Services on iOS devices—pinpointing the location of a device when it's indoors. Unlike GPS technology that determines a device's absolute location in terms of latitude and longitude, the iBeacon technology measures a device's relative distance to an iBeacon in an established location. Since iBeacons work without the need for a WiFi or cellular connection, it makes them ideal for indoor use.