Just in case you were thinking to yourself, “Hey, Comcast doesn’t have a big enough footprint in my life,” I’ve got good news for you. The media behemoth announced Friday that Xfinity Mobile is launching nationwide in the U.S. Comcast commercials ask, “It makes you wonder: shouldn’t we get our phones and internet from the same company?” Quick response: no it doesn’t and how on earth does that make sense? Anyhoo…it’s $45 per line per month for unlimited data or $12 per month per GB of data.
Feral Interactive announced Friday that Formula One 2017 will be released on August 25th, with a same-day release for Mac and PC. The game, created by Codemasters, offers a stunning Formula One racing experience. In addition to the trailer below, Codemasters released a 26 minute, unedited gameplay video that is just unbelievable. The game features a Research 7 Development tree, the ability to tune the cars, a career mode, and off-track activities. The game will be available through Feral and Steam for US$59.95, with a Mac App Store version coming later for $49.99. System requirements haven’t published, but are likely to be steep. If you’re a racing game enthusiast, it’ll be worth it.
I kind of love PetDrop Club. And by kind of, I mean I totally love PetDrop Club. This is more an idea than anything else and it works like this. “Find strangers with insecure inbound AirDrop settings, and send them kind, fluffy reminders that some people are nice, and maybe also to update their settings.” How do you do that? By sharing an image and looking for AirDrop recipients you don’t know. Or, put another way, “Reward strangers for their lack of device privacy by sending them pictures of your dog.” The site for PetClub Drop is funny, but the issue behind it is more serious. Folks who don’t lock down AirDrops to their Contacts (or turn it off) run the risk of having strangers drop all manner of unwanted stuff on their devices. There’s a PetDrop Club Google Group, too, though there’s no activity yet.
Feral Interactive announced that BioShock Remastered is coming to macOS on August 22nd. The Remastered version of BioShock brings the Art Deco first person shooter to 1080p, but you’re going to need a Mac from 2013 or later to run it. Feral announced requirements today, including: all 21.5” iMacs since late 2013 (1GB Nvidia GT 750M Models are not officially supported); all 27” iMacs since late 2013 (1GB Nvidia GT 755M Models are not officially supported); all 13” MacBook Pros since late 2016; all 15” MacBook Pros since late 2013, and all Mac Pros since late 2013. The company said that Late 2012 iMac models with 2GB Nvidia 680MX graphics cards are also supported. The game will play on 2012 and other 2013 Macs, as well, but aren’t officially supported. BioShock Remastered will be priced at $19.99 through Feral and Steam, and a Mac App Store will be released “shortly afterwards.”
You know how you’ve got an Atari app stored on your Apple Watch and you need to get it over to your Atari 2600? Hello? Anyone? OK, fine. No one needs to do this, but YouTuber napabar didn’t let something as petty as need stop him. No, he was motivated by could. Using a Compumate addon, he was able to transfer the apps and run them, because who doesn’t need to guess a number between 1 and a 100 in 8-bit glory…OK, again, need doesn’t apply. Check it out. It’s super geeky cool, and we salute napabar!
The August 21st solar eclipse is fast approaching, which means time is running out to get ready for the event. I’ve already said how important the right protective eyewear is and I’ll say it again: If you don’t use ISO 12312-2 certified eye protection to watch the eclipse you’ll damage your eyes and may go blind. Eye protection that meets the ISO standard is getting harder to find with the eclipse only days away, but the American Astronomical Society has an awesome list of glasses and retailers that may have them on its website. If you don’t have your eclipse glasses yet this is a handy resource to track some down before next Monday.
The 2017 solar eclipse that’ll be visible from coast to coast in the continental United States is only a week away, so you’re running out of time to get ready for the once in a lifetime event. We have a great list of tips to help you enjoy the August 21st event, but there’s always room for more—like this awesome interactive web-based map that shows the eclipse details wherever you click.You can see how much of the eclipse will be visible, what time it’s happening, and how long it’ll last, plus you can search for locations to get eclipse details, too. Xavier Jubier used Google Maps to put together this handy resource.
ARKit, Apple’s answer to augmented reality (AR) on iOS, has become tremendously popular already. Folks have posted quite a few ARKit demos on YouTube since Apple’s announcement of of the software development kit at WWDC 2017. We’ve covered many of these demonstrations in previous articles. This morning, though, I needed a YouTube playlist of them for an article at AppAdvice about IDC’s report that Augmented and Virtual Reality are going to see some serious increase in revenues. Not finding one, I decided to create my own. Since I love all of you, I decided to share that YouTube playlist with you. Without further ado, here it is. We will add to it as more ARKit demonstrations come on our radar.
Apple veteran (officially employee #8) Chris Espinosa has some very interesting comments on the launch of HyperCard, which turned 30 years old today. Mr. Espinosa worked on the original Mac, and was also on the HyperCard team, and in the Twitter thread below, he offers his memories of its 1987 launch. If you enjoy Apple lore, it’s a must-read.
As much fun and as important as @HyperCard was, and as much as it consumed my life for four years, I don’t have that many stories about it.
— Chris Espinosa (@cdespinosa) August 11, 2017
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is out on Blu-ray, DVD, and of course the iTunes Store so we know exactly how everyone will be spending their weekend. Yep, dancing to the unabashedly 70s disco Guardians’ Inferno video. The movie’s main actors are all in the video backing up David Hasselhoff and it’s a flat-out fun three and a half minute escape from the end of the work week. And remember, we are Groot.
A patent that was an existential threat to podcasting was affirmed as invalid by a court in a case brought by the Electronic Frontier Foundation. Key claims of the patent had already been invalidated by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, and the EFF’s case was brought to hasten the appeals process. The group announced this week that the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit ruled unanimously to uphold that decision. The patent holder—Personal Audio—can still appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court. This case hasn’t received a ton of headlines, but whether or not they know it, the millions of people who enjoy podcasts should rejoice.
Check out Photolemur, a newish app for Mac and PC. The developers claim it’s using artificial intelligence/machine learning to do automated photo editing, as demonstrated in the video below. A single user license is $30, and there’s a trial version available, too. Bob LeVitus looked at it back in January, but I thought this new video from the company was compelling.
Instagram announced Tuesday that it’s testing the ability to do live Stories with friends. Users who are broadcasting live can tap a button that allows them to invite anyone who is watching to join in on the broadcast. The original Story broadcaster can remove and invite another, too. As shown in the screenshot, the original Story broadcaster is on top of the split screen, while the participant is on the lower half. Instagram said the feature is being tested by a “small percentage of our community,” and will be launched globally in the “next few months.” It’s all part of Facebook/Instagram’s slow, but steady attack on YouTube, as well as SnapChat, and I expect it to be a popular feature. Especially after some split Stories go catastrophically wrong.
Apple launched its annual back to school promo in Europe, offering students and teachers a pair of free Beats headphones with the purchase of a new Mac or iPad Pro. Customers can choose between Beats Solo3, BeatsX, or Powerbeats3 models. The offer is on top of the discounted pricing on the Mac or iPad Pro available to students and teachers through Apple’s education store. Current pricing includes discounts up to £270 on a new Mac, and up to £59 on a new iPad in the UK. In Euro countries, students and teachers can save €328 on new Mac, and up to €68 on a new iPad Pro. The offer mirrors the U.S. back-to-school promo launched in July.