Apps of the Week: Quetzcoatl, Swing Tale, Blippy, and more

By Lory Gil on Nov 22, 2014

This is the last weekend before the holidays are in full swing. If family is coming to visit, you may not have the luxury of spending all weekend playing games on your iPhone. This weekend, make sure to take some time for yourself and check out all of the new titles the App Store has to offer. We’ve got a list of apps and games that might just keep you sane before the in-laws come trickling in. Read More

 

Amazon launches Black Friday sale with discounts on Beats, wearables and more

By Cody Lee on Nov 21, 2014

Amazon joined Walmart and others in launching its Black Friday sale early today. The online retailer will be discounting a number of products over the next several days in a mix of limited-time deals, pre-Black Friday, Black Friday and Cyber Monday offerings.

Among the discounts we’re seeing on Amazon.com right now include select Beats headphones, which are being discounted by as much as $80 depending on the model, various iOS-connected wearables, and more. We’re even seeing some Apple products on sale. Read More

 

Chase offering card holders free iTunes music to try Apple Pay

By Cody Lee on Nov 21, 2014

Chase is launching a new promotion to entice its cardholders to try out Apple Pay. As noted by MacRumors, the bank is notifying customers that they’re giving away free iTunes music this weekend to anyone who adds their card to Apple’s payment service.

From November 21 to 23, those who add their Chase Visa card to Apple Pay will receive early access to David Guetta’s new album “Listen.” Once verified that their card has been added, users will receive an iTunes redemption code via the Chase mobile app. Read More

 

YouTube issues affecting Yosemite’s Safari

By Christian Zibreg on Nov 21, 2014

According to user-submitted posts over at both Apple Support Communities and Google Product forums, an unknown portion of Mac owners who run Yosemite are having issues playing certain YouTube videos, with some getting Safari crashes when attempting to watch a clip.

It seems to affect some, not all, HTML5 videos and does not manifest itself when using the resource-hog Flash Player, causing Safari to fall back to Flash for video delivery.

Other browsers are unaffected by the annoying problem. Neither Apple nor Google have commented on the matter yet. Digging deeper, it would seem the hiccup could be traced to the YouTube backend because HTML5 videos in Google Chrome and other browsers play without a problem. Read More

 

Court gives Apple final approval for e-book settlement with consumers

By Christian Zibreg on Nov 21, 2014

During a hearing Friday in Manhattan, a United States judge gave Apple final approval to pay $450 million to settle claims that it conspired with five publishers to raise e-book prices on the iBooks Store.

Reuters reports that Judge Cote approved what she called an “unusual” accord. The ruling came after Apple in July agreed to pay big bucks to settle price fixing allegations that the government and class action lawyers leveled against the Cupertino firm. Read More

 

iCloud Photos app updated with new uploading capabilities

By Cody Lee on Nov 21, 2014

Apple updated its iCloud.com Photos app today, enabling the ability to upload photos. The feature, which developers have been testing on the iCloud beta site for the past two weeks, allows users to upload images to iCloud Photo Library.

Previously, those with iCloud Photo Library enabled in iOS 8 could view, download and delete their photos on iCloud.com, but there was no way to upload them. Now users can upload images—including those not taken with an iOS device. Read More

 

This app records FaceTime calls to your Mac

By Christian Zibreg on Nov 21, 2014

I use FaceTime on a daily basis and have always hated it wouldn’t let me save calls to my Mac in the form of a media file. Surely Apple could have implemented such a feature if they wanted, but they didn’t and I think privacy is a big part of that.

If for whatever reason you need to record FaceTime calls to a Mac, Call Recorder by Ken and Glen Aspeslagh, twin brothers from Massachusetts, has you covered.

The app creates a QuickTime movie file containing an audio track for audio-only calls and a video track for FaceTime video calls. QuickTime is an industry-standard multimedia container, meaning you can play your saved video and audio chats pretty much anywhere, convert the files to other formats in software like iMovie or Adobe After Effects, upload them to YouTube and more. Read More

 

New Microsoft ad says iPhone 6 Plus only makes Siri bigger, not smarter

By Christian Zibreg on Nov 21, 2014

Friday, Windows giant Microsoft published a new Apple-bashing ad on its YouTube channel.

The 30-second television commercial shows off the latest version of Cortana, Microsoft’s Siri-like personal assistant, running on the Lumia 830 and interacting with a bunch of built-in applications.

Cortana amusingly brags to Siri about being able to perform functions Apple’s personal assistant can’t, like alert users to leave early for an appointment using traffic alerts, remind them of things based on who calls or texts and more. Read More

 

Stepper 2 shows your step count on the Lock screen and in the Status Bar

By Sébastien Page on Nov 21, 2014

Stepper 2 is a new jailbreak tweak that will display your step count on the Lock screen and in the Status Bar of your iPhone. The tweak allows you to set a daily step goal and receive notifications when it has been reached. Additionally, you can set the tweak to notify you of your current step status on a daily basis. Read More

 

Square confirms adding Apple Pay support in 2015

By Christian Zibreg on Nov 21, 2014

Square, the increasingly popular mobile payment and processing firm, is going to support Apple Pay soon. That’s the gist of a comment CEO Jack Dorsey (who co-founded Twitter) made speaking with CNN Money. Apple Pay integration in the Square Reader will require a new hardware iteration of the accessory with built-in NFC circuitry.

Apple Pay, which also relies on NFC, will become available as an option for Square users sometime in 2015. Read More

 

How to reliably check Apple’s firmware signing window

By Jeff Benjamin on Nov 21, 2014

If you accidentally upgrade to iOS 8.1.1 or any other non-jailbreakable firmware in the future, it’s always a good idea to go out and check Apple’s signing window to see if you can downgrade your device to a previous firmware. For example, if I upgrade my device to iOS 8.1.1 today, or if I want to check out Apple’s iOS 8.2 beta, I know that I can do so and downgrade back to iOS 8.1 with no issue.

But remember, Apple’s signing windows are subject to relatively quick closure. It’s been four days since Apple released iOS 8.1.1, but the signing window for iOS 8.1 is still open, making it possible to downgrade now. That can, of course, change at any time. In fact, Apple could decide to close the signing window as you’re reading this post.

For that reason, its a good idea to downgrade now if you ever want to jailbreak iOS 8. But it’s also good to get familiar with how to check the signing window, and this handy website allows you to do just that. Read More

 

Certify your English proficiency using Duolingo Test Center for iOS

By Christian Zibreg on Nov 21, 2014

The language certification industry commands some surprisingly insane fees so how about fair language certification for all?

Your prayers have been heard: the free learning platform Duolingo on Friday released an iOS app which allows anyone to certify their English proficiency right on their iPhone, iPod touch or iPad.

Not only can Duolingo Test Center certify your language skills right on an iOS device, but does so at a significant lower price, too.

And because there’s no need to travel long distances to examination facilities available only in select major cities, you can get certified in the comfort of your home, in under half an hour. Read More

 

Google’s new Bookmark Manager surfaces in latest Chrome Beta

By Christian Zibreg on Nov 21, 2014

Following Wednesday’s release of a stable version of the 64-bit edition of Google Chrome for Mac, the Internet giant issued a new version of Chrome Beta for Mac, Windows and Linux that includes an all-new Bookmark Manager feature that previously leaked via screenshots (it was called Stars).

With Bookmark Manager, it will be a lot easier for Chrome fans to manage their saved bookmarks, delete unwanted ones, file them under folders and more.

And when creating a new bookmark, Chrome will let you select an image and add a note or snippet so you can find it more quickly later. “Google will also suggest a folder if it seems like it could be a fit,” the team said in a blog post. Read More

 

iWork for iCloud gets new languages, fonts, easier file renaming and more

By Christian Zibreg on Nov 21, 2014

As first reported by German blog Macerkopf.de [Google Translate], Apple has refreshed its iWork for iCloud suite of productivity web applications with several new features and improvements. Pages is now available in eight new languages:  Deutsch, Spanish, Brazilian Portuguese, French, Hebrew, Arabic, Simplified Chinese, Japanese, with bidirectional support for Arabic and Hebrew.

Keynote and Numbers have gained support for the same languages with the exception of Arabic and Hebrew. All three web applications have gained easier file renaming and a couple other editing features. Read More

 

Shipping times improve for select iPhone 6 and 6 Plus models

By Cody Lee on Nov 21, 2014

With the all-important Black Friday shopping weekend just around the corner, Apple continues to improve supply of the new iPhone 6 and 6 Plus. Shipping estimates for select models of the handsets have recently ameliorated for Apple’s US online store and in other countries.

Both 64GB and 128GB iPhone 6 models, as well as the 16GB iPhone 6 Plus, are now showing ship dates 7 to 10 days out for all colors across all major US carriers. And the 16GB iPhone 6 is now shipping in 5 to 7 days, with Personal Pickup available at a number of Apple Stores. Read More

 

Disney Store app updated with support for Apple Pay

By Cody Lee on Nov 21, 2014

The Disney Store app has received an update, bringing it to version 3.2.1. Just in time for the holidays, the update includes support for Apple Pay, allowing iPhone 6 and 6 Plus users to pay for their purchases using Apple’s new payment method.

While in-app Apple Pay is supported by the new iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 3, it doesn’t appear the iPad version of the Disney Store app takes advantage of it yet. It also looks like folks utilizing Apple Pay will still have to enter all of their shipping info. Read More

 

EA Mobile teases upcoming game “Need for Speed No Limits”

By Cody Lee on Nov 21, 2014

EA Mobile has posted a new teaser trailer for its upcoming game “Need for Speed No Limits.” The game is being built by Firemonkeys, the combined teams of Firemint and IronMonkey Studios, who both have racing backgrounds.

The video features professional rally driver Ken Block, of the Hoonigan Racing Division, playing the new Need for Speed on his iPhone 6. The gameplay footage shown is fairly impressive, flaunting sharp graphics and intense gameplay. Read More

 

Best Buy launches pre-Black Friday sale with discounts on iPods and iPads

By Cody Lee on Nov 20, 2014

Joining Walmart and other retailers looking to get a head start on next week’s Black Friday festivities, Best Buy today began offering limited-time deals on a number of products. Among those products is a first generation iPad Air, and fifth-gen iPod touch, both of which have been significantly discounted.

For the next three days, Best Buy is taking between $80 and $100 off all iPad Air models—the discount depends on the model you buy. While the original Air is more than a year old now, it still features a newer hardware design and packs plenty of power. The 16GB Wi-Fi-only model is a steal at just $319. Read More

 

Apple seeds first OS X 10.10.2 beta to developers

By Cody Lee on Nov 20, 2014

Apple has seeded the first beta of OS X Yosemite 10.10.2 this afternoon. The update, labeled build 14C68k, is available through the Update tab in the Mac App Store and the Dev Center for all registered Mac developers.

Today’s release comes just a few days after Apple officially launched 10.10.1 to the public, which featured bug fixes and Wi-Fi improvements—although some users are still complaining of Wi-Fi issues after updating. Read More

 

How to downgrade to iOS 8.1

By Jeff Benjamin on Nov 20, 2014

If you want to jailbreak iOS 8.1, but you’re running iOS 8.1.1 or the new iOS 8.2 beta, you can downgrade your firmware to iOS 8.1 and jailbreak as long as Apple is still signing the iOS 8.1 firmware. As of this post, 8.1 is still being signed, but that will change in the future, so use this post to determine whether or not this tutorial is still valid.

If Apple is signing iOS 8.1, it’s extremely easy to downgrade your device, even if you’re running the iOS 8.2 beta or iOS 8.1.1. Neither of those firmwares are jailbreakable at the moment, but iOS 8.1 is jailbreakable, hence the need to downgrade. Follow our simple tutorial after the break to downgrade your device back to iOS 8.1. Read More

 
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