With Amazon Alexa being joined in our living rooms by Google Assistant and now Microsoft Cortana, it’s clear that Apple needs to step up to the plate and take back the home. Jeff Butts makes the case for why Cupertino needs to develop an Echo-like device for Siri.
Amazon has Echo, Google has Home, Apple reportedly has its own voice controlled assistant in the works, and now Microsoft is getting in on the game, too. Microsoft’s device is called Invoke, and it uses the company’s Cortana voice interface coupled with Harman Kardon speakers.
Today Microsoft has released Visual Studio for Mac, which it previewed at the Microsoft’s Connect(); 2016 developer event. It’s exciting news for developers who want to develop for Windows without giving up their Apple devices.
Readdle announced Wednesday the release of PDF Expert 6 for iPhone and iPad. The update includes a new interface, the ability to password protect files, and you can work from and save to Dropbox. On the editing side, users can edit PDF text, add and replace images, add links to text and pictures, and redact content. The company put together a good video showing off the new features (below). PDF Expert 6 is available now on the App Store at $9.99.
Microsoft has its own Amazon Echo competitor coming, and it’s called Invoke. Kelly Guimont and John Martellaro join Jeff Gamet to share their reactions to Microsoft’s new Cortana-based product, voice assistants, smart home fatigue, and more.
Last week Dr. Mac said he thought AirPods were too expensive… For those looking for decent-sounding, comfortable wireless headsets to use primarily with a single Apple device—an iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, or Mac—he says he knows many models that will serve your needs and cost you less than AirPods.
LEGO and Star Wars go together like, well, LEGO and Star Wars. So of course we’re seeing plenty of LEGO recreations of the Star Wars: The Last Jedi teaser trailer. My favorite so far comes from Workshop LEGO Animations, and it’s shot-for-shot spot on. Rolling LEGO oceans, LEGO Millennium Falcon and TIE Fighters, Rey, Finn, and Poe. I love it so much I want Disney to make all the Star Wars trailers with LEGO.
Another iPhone 8 render is out, giving us another look at what to expect when Apple officially announces the new smartphone model later this year. Steve Hemmerstoffer, known as @onleaks on Twitter, and his track record makes it very likely this is exactly what Apple plans to ship.
If you’re getting sick of watching programs bounce in your Dock just because you plugged your iPhone into your Mac to charge it, then boy, have we got a Quick Tip for you! Melissa Holt’s going to tell us how to stop Photos and iTunes from opening automatically.
Apple is—at last—getting into the sleep tracking business. 9to5Mac reported that Apple purchased Beddit, a firm that makes sleep-tracking hardware and apps for Apple’s iPhone and Apple Watch.
In this excerpt from Working Smarter for Mac Users, a new eBook by Bob “Dr. Mac” LeVitus, he maintains that one of the best ways to keep your focus on one thing is to use the Hide and Hide Others commands or their keyboard shortcuts to hide everything else! What a concept!
The just announced Echo Show isn’t the only device in Amazon’s lineup getting voice calling support. A new feature dubbed Alexa Calling is coming to the Echo, Echo Dot, and Alexa mobile app today. For now, the calling features are limited to the Echo lineup and Alexa app, but that could be the first step in turning the devices into speaker phones fro our homes.
Apple officially invited members of the press to its World Wide Developer Conference (WWDC) keynote. The conference will be held at the McEnery Convention Center in San Jose, CA, from June 5th to June 9th, with the keynote on June 5th.
Public Wi-Fi hotspots are terrific, when they work. Unfortunately, sometimes they get hung up and won’t deliver the proper login page. Jeff Butts shows you what to do when your favorite public Wi-Fi hotspot won’t connect to the internet, and you really want to get back to surfing the web.
If you’re a privacy conscious individual like Andrew Orr, you’ve probably wanted to remove location data from your photos before sharing them to social media. It’s possible to do this on macOS, but did you know you can do it on iOS too? Here’s how to remove photo metadata.
Blue Microphones shipped Satellite, wireless, over-the-ear headphones with a built-in analog amplifier. Satellite was announced at CES, where I was more focused on the wired Sadie and Ella models also introduced. Satellite is the company’s entry into premium wireless headphones, and they feature Bluetooth 4.1. They’re also foldable and support the Apt-X audio codec. Apple isn’t currently supporting Apt-X, but some Android devices do. I haven’t tested Satellite, but I’m a big fan of Blue’s other high-end over-the-ear headphones. Jeff Butts will be reviewing these for us, and I look forward to hearing what he thinks. Satellite is available now for $399.95.
Amazon unveiled its Echo Show, and it has a display. Bryan Chaffin and the Maccast’s Adam Christianson join Jeff Gamet to share their reactions to Amazon’s newest Alexa device. They also have some thoughts on the unintended confirmation that the FBI paid $900,000 for the San Bernardino iPhone hack, plus Bryan coins “I’m gonna up that up.”
Apple Music has published a teaser for a behind-the-scenes video for Harry Styles’s new album, Harry Styles. Mr. Styles rose to fame as part of One Direction, and this marks his debut solo album. He’s been performing songs from the album on shows like Saturday Night Live, Today, and a host of others ahead of its May 12th release. Two songs from the album are also on Apple Music now. Put another way, to a young audience Harry Styles is a big deal. Having an exclusive behind-the-scenes movie for this album is going to be a big deal for Apple Music, too. According to the YouTube description, the film, “features exclusive interviews and behind the scenes footage shot in Jamaica, Los Angeles and London during the making of the album and is complemented by Harry and his band performing songs from it for the first time at the world famous Abbey Road Studios in London.” The full film is “coming soon.”
The biggest un-surprise of the day comes from Amazon and its just announced Echo Show. The well-leaked new Echo model includes a built-in display and camera so you can get visual responses to your Alexa queries and make video calls, too.