iPhone Life magazine

Todd Bernhard's picture

Todd Bernhard is a bestselling (6+ million downloads) award-winning (AARP, About.com, BestAppEver.com) developer and founder of NoTie.NET, an app developer specializing in Talking Ringtone apps including AutoRingtone.

An iPhone is almost always attached to his hip, but over the years, Bernhard has owned an Apple Newton, a Motorola Marco, an HP 95LX, a Compaq iPaq, a Palm Treo, and a Nokia e62.

In addition to writing for iPhone Life, Mr. Bernhard has written for its sister publications, PocketPC Magazine and The HP Palmtop Paper.

What You Need to Know about iOS 8.3

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When it comes to operating system updates, a "dot-dot" release is usually reserved for bug fixes, and a "dot" release adds performance enhancements and some minor new functionality. With Apple, a full release, like 7.0 or 8.0 is a major update, often with 1,000-plus new features. True to form, Apple unleashed iOS 8.3 this week and there are just a few features worth mentioning. First, as I covered earlier, depending on your carrier (Sprint and T-Mobile in the U.S., EE in the UK), you can now make phone calls using Wi-Fi, without consuming cellular minutes or requiring a cell tower nearby. That means you could make phone calls from overseas, for free, and still appear to be calling from your cellphone number.



Party People, Follow Your Favorite Bartenders with Hoozetending

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I've been using an app called Hoozetending (free) from Hoozetending, Inc. The idea is to let potential customers and partygoers know which of their favorite bartenders is working where and when, and what deals their favorite establishments have to offer. Of course, users can discover new places and bartenders, too. It's a bit like Pinterest for nightlife.



An Apple Watch is on the Way

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I was up early, before 3 a.m. Eastern Time, to be sure to be able to order an Apple Watch. As I kept hitting refresh on my Mac's Safari browser, I also kept relaunching the Apple Store app on my iPhone. It was a good thing, too, as the app was ready to take orders several minutes before the website. I was able to place my order successfully by 3:10 a.m, even using Apple Pay and my fingerprint with Touch ID, long before the web site was ready. In fact, the last step in the app is to launch the Apple Store website to show my confirmation, but that part didn't work. Fortunately, I was able to check my order history and it went through.



Deals on Non-Apple Smartwatches

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The Apple Watch isn't the only game in town, and Apple has left quite an opening in the sub-$300 range. Competition is good, and several smart watch makers offer a lot more than just a lower price. Martian Watches offer a traditional analog clock face paired with a small strip of a digital display for Caller ID and text notifications. This saves battery life, and the analog clock uses its own battery which lasts as long as a year. Their higher-end models also add a Bluetooth Speakerphone with Siri voice control. Pebble offers waterproof watches, with e-paper display for a battery life of about a week.



Apple ][ Watch Discovered!

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Behold the Apple ][ Watch. No, this isn't the Apple Watch 2.0 but a "smart" watch based on the original Apple ][ which holds a fond place in my heart, as my first computer. The handiwork that went in to this design is incredible and deserves praise from Jony Ive. It may be "putty" in color and not "Aluminium" but it's a thing of beauty, to me at least; you never forget your first computer!



Make iPhone Calls Over Wi-Fi with iOS 8.3

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Apple just released iOS 8.3 with new emojis and other features, but the most important feature, for Sprint users at least, may be the ability to seamlessly use Wi-Fi to make phone calls. You need to edit some settings to make this magic work. Go to Settings > Phone > Wi-Fi Calls. T-Mobile customers have already been able to do this, and now Sprint users of the iPhone 5, 5s, 5c, 6, and 6 Plus can join in on the fun. And those calls do not count against your cellular minutes!



Apple Watch Packaging Leaked

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Perhaps it's because Apple is so secretive, or because the Apple Watch was preannounced long before its availability, but leaked photos of a watch "in the wild" with its packaging is being analyzed over and over. AppleInsider shows these photos from a now-private Instagram account.



With HBO NOW, Watch Game of Thrones on Your iPhone, or iPad or Apple TV

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During Apple's March 9th Apple Watch event, some stage time was offered to HBO as they introduced HBO NOW. The service allows streaming of all of HBO's content. The service is similar to HBO GO, but does not require an HBO Cable TV subscription.



Want an Apple Watch for Half Price? Apply for a Job!

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When the original Mac was introduced on January 24th, 1984, Apple offered a discounted deal just for students at certain colleges. Steve Jobs was asked how the general public could get such a deal. His one word response... "Enroll." I did, at Carnegie Mellon, one of those colleges, and bought my Mac the day I got to campus. I also applied to work at the school's computer store, and worked there for four years, becoming Apple's Student Representative on Campus!



Is the Apple Watch Kosher?

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It's Passover, so I thought I'd ponder the question "is the Apple Watch Kosher?" Believe it or not, "Kosher" is about more than food. Elevators, lights, and other devices can be consider Kosher or not depending on several factors. The concern is that we are supposed to take the Sabbath as a day of rest... no work. And our actions cannot cause a machine to work on our behalf. That's why "Kosher" elevators stop on every floor during the Sabbath, so you can get on or off, but the machine was operating either way. You didn't touch a button, turning a light on or summoning the elevator. Some folks might keep their lights on (or off) all Sabbath.



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