Posts Tagged ‘apple’

Apple remove misleading virus apps

March 20th, 2015 1 Comment By Mof Gimmers

whatsapp1 Apple remove misleading virus appsApple are apparently shutting down a load of ‘anti-virus’ apps over at the iOS App Store, as they think that they’re ‘misleading’.

Anti-virus software company Intego, said that Apple doesn’t want iHavers to believe iOS devices are at risk from viruses and malware, so they’re going to nix a load of applications, including Intego’s ‘VirusBarrier’ app.

Intego argue that their software scans external files that were stored in emails or in the cloud, looking for malicious things. While an email attachment can’t directly install a virus to an iOS device, these viruses can still be passed on through them, and VirusBarrier wants to prevent that.

Apple are said to have called the VirusBarrier App Store description ‘misleading’ and, according to Intego, Apple are refusing to reinstate it to the App Store until the developer rewords the description to make the app’s intent ‘obnoxiously’ clear. At the moment, it says: “Your iOS device can act as a gateway for malware and viruses. Infected attachments can transfer to your computer, or your friends, family, and colleagues.”

“Intego VirusBarrier iOS offers on-demand scanning for your iPad, iPhone, and iPod Touch, so you can catch malicious files and get rid of them before they spread.”

This isn’t good enough for Apple, clearly. Then again, nothing is.

Apple to start streaming TV?

March 17th, 2015 No Comments By Mof Gimmers

Picture 22 300x208 Apple to start streaming TV?Apple are, apparently, planning to launch their own online TV streaming service, allowing iFans to watch programmes on their iPads, Apple TV boxes and whatnot.

They’ve been talking to companies like ESPN, FX, CBS, and Fox, which isn’t going to set the world on fire, but is a start. You can presume that any deal won’t involve NBCUniversal, as Apple fell out with the broadcaster’s parent company Comcast.

Looks like Apple are going after the subscription market, with rumours that their service will set you back around £25 per month. If the mutterings are to be believed, we’ll be hearing much more about this around June.

It isn’t surprising they want in, what with Netflix doing so well and Amazon Prime Instant Video muscling into the market. If Apple manage to get HBO and deliver that around the world, that could be a game-changer. Only last week, they announced that they’d secured exclusive early access to the HBO Now streaming service, which means Game of Thrones devotees will be keeping an eye on all this.

Apple, as ever, aren’t commenting on the speculation, leaving berks like us to do all their promotional work for them.

Apple services are down!

March 11th, 2015 5 Comments By Mof Gimmers

sad apple logo Apple services are down!Have you been having trouble with some Apple services? It isn’t you – there’s bother going on and Apple know about it.

The company said that some of their services, including the App store, iTunes store, Mac App store and iBook store, were down for users worldwide today.

Apple said on their website: ”Customers may be unable to make purchases from the App Store, iTunes Store, iBooks Store, or Mac App Store.”

They also noted that iCloud Mail and iCloud Account & Sign In were affected earlier, but that all seems to be sorted out now. Other services are acting up too, so don’t worry – you’re not going mental or don’t need to throw your phone down the toilet in anger.

The outages have been reported in a number of countries, including the United States, Switzerland, Hong Kong and all over the UK. Apple will be trying to sort it out. In the meantime, you’re going to have to either talk to some humans or do other things on the internet. You’re capable of distracting yourself, we’re sure.

Obligatory Apple Smartwatch article

March 10th, 2015 15 Comments By Mof Gimmers

Apple, as you’ll know, have announced things about their smartwatch. By law, we’re obliged to write about it or someone will kick down our door and thrash us to within an inch of our lives.

So, if you’re interested in the new Apple device and want to start queueing up right now, here’s what you need to know:

apple watch 500x334 Obligatory Apple Smartwatch article

- It’ll cost you $349 for the smaller one. $399 for the larger one.
- It’ll be available to pre-order in Europe and America on April 10th and you’ll be able to buy it from April 24th.
- There’s a solid gold one and which will cost you loads of money. If you need to ask ‘how much?’ then you’re not wealthy enough to buy one.
- The phone will be like a second screen for your iPhone, which means you can leave your phone in your pocket if you like.
- You’ll be able to control your settings and that via a dedicated iPhone app.
- There’ll be loads of voice controlled stuff.
- The watch will log the rate of your heart and an accelerometer which will track how active you are.
- Apple CEO Tim Cook says: “In addition to being a beautiful object, the Apple watch is the most advanced timepiece ever created; it’s a revolutionary way to connect to others; and it’s a comprehensive health and fitness companion. We make products that enhance people’s lives, and the Apple Watch carries that to a new level. [It] tracks your daily movement, and it even reminds you if you’ve been sitting too long. It’s like having a coach on your wrist.”
- The phone’s battery will last for 18 hours of typical use.

If you need to know anything else, then surely you know how the internet works so you can salivate over every single minuscule detail of Apple’s new smartwatch

apple watch 300x200 What to expect from Apples smartwatch   and do you want one?The appetite for smartwatches has been, shall we say, not that great. It seems that everyone is happy enough to have their mobile as a watch replacement and having a secondary thing on your wrist seems a bit pointless and a bit expensive.

However, as we all know, such is people’s devotion to Apple’s devices, things can really take off when they get in the market.

Today, Tim Cook is going to announce the final details of the Apple Watch, and it is noteworthy at least, because it’ll be the first Apple product he releases that didn’t have an involvement from Steve Jobs.

So what can we expect from the iWatch?

Well, Apple’s offering is going to have more features than rival watches. Of course, it’ll have a load of health-related stuff so you can see what your heart-rate is like if you’re a runner or whatever. It’ll also handle your texts, emails and phone calls too, which is well Dick Tracy. It’ll have Siri and Apple too, and if Apple’s plans work out, you’ll also be able to use your watch as a key for your car or a hotel room.

Apple’s involvement shouldn’t be overlooked in all this. Apple weren’t the first to make media players and tablets, but there’s no question that they injected excitement into the markets. With Apple fanboiz all set to queue-up overnight to get the latest product, the rest of the smartwatch market will no doubt be grateful that this device is getting closer to hitting the shelves.

This is a powerhouse of a brand and it could well be the thing that turns the smartwatch market around. Or, it might not. Does Apple’s entrance into smartwatches actually make anyone want to buy one or is this just an expensive waste of time as it is going to be around £300?

It’ll be interesting to see if everyone really takes up this new product, or whether everyone has gadget fatigue and waits a year to see how everything gets updated and drops in price.

There’s a livestream you can watch of the event, if that’s your thing, here.

Who is the biggest mobile maker in the world?

March 5th, 2015 2 Comments By Mof Gimmers

mobile apps Who is the biggest mobile maker in the world?

People, for some inexplicable reason, argue about mobile phones. Well, for those of you who do, who take stock in things like ‘most successful’ and the like, Apple have overtaken Samsung as the world’s biggest smartphone maker.

They sold more mobiles over Christmas than any other brand, thanks to the Chinese going crazy for iPhones. And there’s a fantastically large amount of sales going on too, with Apple selling 74.8m phones, pipping Samsung at the post with their sales of 73m.

It is good news for Apple as their sales were up nearly 25m from the same period the previous year, which saw them making a not too shabby £11.8bn profit.

Obviously, this is going to worry some people at Samsung who have seen their sales falling. They sold 10m fewer phones than the previous year.

Might be something to do with the collective ‘meh’ at the Galaxy S5. Still, at least they’ve got a pair of phones coming out soon, one which will be curved for seemingly no reason.

Another thing chipping away at Samsung is the rise of Chinese businesses like Xiaomi, Huawei and Lenovo, providing phones at lower prices, which is making them very appealing to younger consumers. Of course, Samsung are teetering on the precipice and still doing well for themselves across the planet, but they’ll be all too aware of the fact that a large mobile maker can fall out of favour very, very quickly. Just look at the state BlackBerry got themselves in.

Apple Pay hit by high levels of scams

March 2nd, 2015 1 Comment By Mof Gimmers

apple pay 300x169 Apple Pay hit by high levels of scamsApple Pay is taking off in the US, however, it isn’t all peaches and cream. Banks have been surprised at the level of payments being made with card details, leaving them desperately trying to find and fix the flaws in security and trying to quickly work on better verification and checking systems.

It is worth pointing out that criminals haven’t cracked open Apple Pay’s secure encryption system, but rather, they’re setting up new iPhones with stolen personal info and then ringing banks up to set up cards on the phones, before spending victim’s money.

Why Apple Pay? Well, one of the reasons that they’re being targeted is because you can buy expensive things at Apple Stores with Apple Pay. Then, all you have to do is flog your ill gotten gains down the pub for cash, and you’re away.

Reports suggest that total losses have already run into millions.

A spokesman for Apple says: “Apple Pay is designed to be extremely secure and protect a user’s personal information. During setup Apple Pay requires banks to verify each and every card and the bank then determines and approves whether a card can be added to Apple Pay. Banks are always reviewing and improving their approval process, which varies by bank.”

So, it looks like banks need to do a bit more when it comes to customers’ security regarding NFC payments and the like. If you’re worried that this all feels like a disaster waiting to happen, stick to Chip & Pin or cash-only, until the flaws get ironed out.

Emoji get more diverse

February 25th, 2015 1 Comment By Mof Gimmers

emoji middle finger 300x300 Emoji get more diverseThere’s been complaints that emoji aren’t exactly inclusive, but that’s all about to change. This, no doubt, will prompt a load of tutting from people who a) Never see what the fuss is about because they’re fine or b) People who swear at the mere mention of emoji.

There’s another set of people who shudder because they didn’t realise that their Samsung phone was making them have a large phone bill for sending texts with emoji in them.

Anyway, 300 more are being added to the iOS 8.3 keyboard and include a whole host of differently coloured faces and whatnot. Good news for those that have been wishing for it and taking absolutely nothing away from those that didn’t.

There’s more too. There will be more options for relationships and gadgets. That means there’s going to be some same-sex emoji available for use and, because this is Apple, they’ve created an iPhone 6 and an Apple Watch icons. There’s going to be a load of new flags added too, which is nice for vexillologists.

“Apple supports and cares deeply about diversity, and is working with The Unicode Consortium to update the standard so that it better represents diversity for all of us,” said an Apple spokesperson.

And here, we have some of the more more diverse emoji, c/o Apple.

Emojis diverse 500x281 Emoji get more diverse

If you’re wondering about the skin tones, they’re apparently based on something called the Fitzpatrick Classification scale, which was founded by dermatologist Thomas Fitzpatrick at Harvard Medical School in 1975. The yellow emoji is supposed to be the standard, just-like-the-old-emoji-and-therefore-aren’t-meant-to-be-human-coloured, just in case you were wondering.

apple logo Apple ditch health monitoring... but iWatch set for April release?Apple are going to get rid of the health-monitoring element of their new smartwatch, thanks to issues with regulations and technology. So now, if you want to know if you’re healthy or not, you’re going to have to look at yourself in the mirror and remember whether you’ve been for a run or not.

Reports have said that some of the features they’d planned to do were just too complicated, while others aspects would have invited ‘unwanted regulatory oversight’. As such, the thing they would have to put out wouldn’t meet Apple’s standards, so they’re not bothering.

“Apple also experimented with ways to detect blood pressure or the amount of oxygen in the blood, but the results were inconsistent,” said sources. ”Moreover, if Apple interpreted the numbers to provide health or behaviour advice, the company likely would have needed approval from the US Food and Drug Administration or other regulators.”

Whether this changes what was said by Apple CEO Tim Cook is another matter. He said in some awfully tedious speech that the new iWatch could prevent cancer from happening: “Some doctors now think that sitting down for long periods is the new cancer, so ten minutes before the hour the Watch software taps you to make you have a walk around. It’s quite funny to be in a meeting at Apple and ten minutes before the hour people get up and start moving around, but people like it.”

As for the release of the phone itself, sources have also said that Apple have asked their Asian suppliers to make up to 6 million of the devices in time for an April release.

Apple to update your iPhone to make it speedier!

February 10th, 2015 1 Comment By Mof Gimmers

iphone 6 Apple to update your iPhone to make it speedier!Does you iPhone run slower than an ageing colonel? Is your Apple device about as nifty as a double decker filled with concrete passengers? Well, there’s some good news for you!

Apple are planning a new, free software update which will make your iPad and iPhone run much more quickly. That’s nice of them isn’t it? Unless they mess it up of course.

This brand new iOS 9 update is apparently going to try and iron out all the bugs and lag from your device and generally speed the performance up. While previous iOS updates have been all about that interface, tidying up design and fiddling with the functions, the new one has set its sights almost wholly on performance and speed.

Rumour has it that this new update will come in June and of course, like all other iOS updates, it’ll be free for all compatible devices.

So there you go. If you’ve been whining about your iThing, all your problems might be solved when the summer comes.

beatsbydrdrelogo Apple to get around to Beats Music at some point, finallyWhen Apple bought Beats, everyone expected them to tackle Spotify head-on. Then, nothing really happened. Apple, it seemed, had actually forgot about Dre.

But alas, no more, as rumours are getting very loud about Apple and Beats and what they plan to do.

It looks like there’s going to be a launch for a new subscription-based music service which will be Apple-made, but powered by Beats technology and music content. This won’t be a mere installing of the Beats app into iDevices, but rather, Apple things will integrate Beats ‘deeply’ into the iOS mobile operating system, iTunes and Apple TV.

According to reports, the service will cost $7.99 per month, which crucially, makes this cheaper than Spotify’s $9.99-a-month. It’ll also be cheaper than Google’s music offerings, as well as Rhapsody and Rdio. It’ll be more expensive than Pandora though. Not that anyone cares as this is a three-way dogfight between Google, Spotify and Apple.

Apple should really get a wriggle on with this, as there was a lot of fanfare when they bought Beats for $3 billion last year. It looks like they’ll be rolling something out this Summer, with mutterings pointing at a June release.

However, we’re all too long-in-the-tooth and cynical to believe that by merely embedding something as standard into a device, it’ll be a success. Anyone who owns a Samsung phone will tell you about the huge amount of entertainment apps that just sit in devices, taking up space and being unused.

Either way, Apple will be pushing on, and it has been suggested that this new service will focus on cloud streaming that is centred on what’s already in your music library.

Apple to make the iCar?

February 4th, 2015 1 Comment By Mof Gimmers

apple logo Apple to make the iCar?Google have been parping on about their driverless cars, and now, rumours are getting louder about Apple making an electric car.

CNN have an image of a patent which has been granted to “Apple Electric Car, Inc.,” yesterday, which should get some Apple devotees reasonably excited, and some Android defenders tutting into their laps.

Now specifically, this patent shows an adjustable mount for a computerized display in a golf cart, which isn’t strictly going to fulfil the promise of an all singing Siri and app-dancing iCar, but there’s no smoke without fire.

Tesla were spotted at Apple a few years ago, which got tongues wagging and Wall Street analysts have been loudly muttering about Apple looking at electric cars as an investment for ages.

And let’s be honest here – electric cars and Apple do look like a match made in heaven and with motoring changing toward a new model and, most importantly, a huge money-spinner if you get it right, Apple will absolutely be weighing up a move into the car game.

If this is just a move that Apple are making to create huge LCD dashboard panels, then you’ve got to ask yourself if you’d be into having that, or indeed, distracted by that.

Feel free to make your own jokes about an Apple car being installed with windows.

 

the brick talking mobile phone holder 184x300 Consumers are bored of new smartphone handsets?Remember when a smart phone was a big deal? When clamshell phones were in? Seems like ages ago, right? Well, it seems smartphones have been with us so long that we’re actually now suffering from “smartphone fatigue”, which is apparently A Thing, which means we really can’t be bothered to rush out and get the latest handset, and we’d rather see what contract benefits we can get instead.

Part of the problem appears to be that makers like Samsung, HTC and Sony are updating their flagship handsets every year, but rather than getting caught in the upgrade cycle, more and more budget conscious consumers are instead opting for cheaper tariffs over newer phones.

Research from USwitch found the top Android manufacturers saw declining sales for subsequent updates of new handsets. For example, the HTC One (M8) saw sales through the networks 23% lower at launch than its predecessor, the One (M7). Samsung fared worse, with the Galaxy S5 posting 33% fewer sales than the S4, but the biggest crash was for Sony, whose strategy of releasing two new ‘flagship’ models every year isn’t working. The Xperia Z2 undersold the Z1 by 42%, while the Z3 sold 60% fewer handsets at launch than the Z1.

According to USwitch, consumers ranked ease of use, good signal quality and battery life as the most important aspects of a new phone, and are therefore unimpressed with the long list of new  features manufactures have crammed into their top models in recent years. This has actually led to an increase in SIM-only plans where consumers are opting to keep their older handsets instead of upgrading, and moving to a much cheaper SIM-only deal once their contract ends, helped by new software updates making old phones feel fresher and newer without needing a replacement.

Apple, however, has fared better, with increased sales for new phones, although there are signs that fatigue is seeting in here too. The iPhone 5s outsold the 5 at their comparative launches by 40%, but the most recent model, the iPhone 6, outperformed the 5s by just 25%.

Apple’s Spotlight opening you to hacks?

January 13th, 2015 No Comments By Mof Gimmers

sad apple logo Apples Spotlight opening you to hacks?On OS X Yosemite, you may have noticed that Apple’s Spotlight search function is rather sophisticated, allowing you to search the web as well as peering into your machine for content too. All very clever.

However, it also has a flaw that could well expose your local information to nefarious types. Not so clever.

So what’s going on? Well, the weakness focuses on Apple Mail. Basically, as Spotlight Search indexes emails that have been received within Apple’s email service, it also shows previews of your emails, your images and such.

All a hacker would need to do is to insert a tracking pixel into one of your email’s images and hey presto! They could well be enjoying access to your data!

While the email is in your inbox, you can ignore scams, but Spotlight’s preview function opens up a vulnerability. Seeing as Spotlight opens previews of your junk and spam messages, this could be a problem. Even if you have switched off the “load remote content in messages” feature, it doesn’t exactly fix the problem.

Until Apple issue a fix, the best thing for you to do is to go to your Mac System preferences and switch off email indexing.

ITUNES 300x168 Apple changes terms to allow 14 day refund window on iTunes and AppStoreWe’ve all done it, been drunk in charge of a smart device pre-loaded with payment details that has enabled us to make an ill-considered iTunes purchase. However, unless we are compos mentis enough to realise what we have done within a relatively short period of time, when purchasing digital content, our deranged purchases remain stuck with us for ever.

However, now Apple have made a change to their terms and conditions for iTunes and the AppStore which allows users to return digital content within a 14 day period to comply with the EU Consumer Rights Directive enacted earlier this year.

Apple’s terms now state: “Right of cancellation: If you choose to cancel your order, you may do so within 14 days from when you received your receipt without giving any reason, except iTunes Gifts which cannot be refunded once you have redeemed the code” which suggests that you can get a refund within 14 days of the emailed receipt whether or not you have downloaded the content. However, conflicting reports suggest that refunds will only be permitted  where you haven’t actively downloaded the content yourself- although automatic downloads could be OK. While this would cover a drunken or child-instigated purchase in error, that wouldn’t help you if you downloaded the wrong song, or the wrong version of a song for example, when you only realised your mistake after downloading. And surely “without any reason” means you may merely have changed your mind, something covered by the Consumer Rights Directive.

Also, it seems the refund process might not be completely automated, requiring you to ‘report a problem’ or make a written statement in order to start the process. Apple states it will refund users within two weeks of being notified of the order being cancelled/ the product deleted.

Google Play Music already offers EU customers a 14 day refund period over the seven day period offered to customers elsewhere in the world. Apple terms on refunds do not apply outside the EU.