About Jeff Benjamin

Jeff has been with iDownloadBlog since 2010, acting as resident video specialist, and tutorial expert. He earned his degree in Computer Network Systems back in 2001, but decided Cisco routers and the like just weren’t for him. Since then, he’s been heavily involved with online writing. He’s written for numerous tech and video game sites since the late 1990′s, and has a knack for explaining things in a simple, clear, and concise manner. Jeff works primarily from the east coast on his Retina Macbook Pro, and shoots video with a Canon DSLR. During downtime he likes to travel the world, visiting the various Apple Stores across the globe. You can email him at jeff [at] idownloadblog.com and follow him on Twitter @JeffBenjam or on Google+.

Android M: Six headlining features from Google’s upcoming mobile OS update

by Jeff Benjamin on May 28, 2015

Google’s annual I/O conference is currently going on in San Francisco, and as expected, Android M, its latest update to Android, was officially unveiled. Although lots of new features will be packed in with Android M, six of those features were brought to the forefront during the beginning of the I/O keynote.

Google states that Android M is rethinking fundamental aspects of how the platform has worked for years, and focuses on polish and quality and improving the core user experience. From what we’ve seen thus far, we’d have to agree.

The following six areas—App Permissions, Web Experience, App Links, Android Pay, Fingerprint Support, and Power & Charging—were specially highlighted as new features for Android M. What do these new features mean for Android and the future of mobile? Read More

 

How to manage reminders on Apple Watch

by Jeff Benjamin on May 28, 2015

If you’ve been looking for an official Reminders app for the Apple Watch, your search has been in vain. That’s because there simply isn’t an app dedicated to Reminders on the Apple Watch like there is on the iPhone.

That doesn’t mean that the Apple Watch is incapable of both managing reminders and setting reminders. Actually, with the help of Siri, it’s easy to set up reminders on Apple Watch.

Take a glance at this latest entry into our full Apple Watch tutorial for a look at how to effectively set and manage reminders on the small screen. Read More

 

How to use Digital Touch to send sketches, taps, and heartbeats on Apple Watch

by Jeff Benjamin on May 28, 2015

The Digital Touch features available on Apple Watch are some of the device’s most personal qualities. With it, you can do things like send sketches, taps, and yes, even your heartbeat, to friends. These three aspects make up the whole of the highly touted Digital Touch feature-set on Apple Watch. In this post, we’ll break down how to send sketches, taps, and heartbeats with ease. Read More

 

How to track stocks on Apple Watch

by Jeff Benjamin on May 28, 2015

If you’re big into the stock market, then you will no doubt appreciate the features that the Apple Watch brings to the table with regard to stock tracking. Featuring a Stocks app, glance, and the ability to check on a stock via Siri, the Apple Watch is a great tool for quickly garnering info on the stocks that interest you. In this tutorial, we’ll show you how to manage stocks in a variety of ways on Apple Watch. Read More

 

Let’s Talk Jailbreak 109: 99.999999999% sure

by Jeff Benjamin on May 27, 2015

Episode 109: We discuss iOS 9 and the rumored Rootless security, plus new jailbreak tweaks like Aeuria LS, Color Convos, IllLookLater, and more.

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New tweak brings iOS notifications to Xiaomi’s Mi Band

by Jeff Benjamin on May 26, 2015

XiaoMi’s recently launched US online store doesn’t carry any actual smartphone hardware yet, but you can buy hardware like headphones, battery packs, and a fitness device called the Mi Band.

The Mi Band is akin to some FitBit models, in that it’s slim, understated, and lacks a touch screen. Due to the tracker’s lack of battery draining features, it gets really good battery life upwards of 30 days.

Perhaps the most attractive thing about the Mi Band is the price. Retailing for just $14.99, it’s much more affordable than any dedicated fitness tracker I’ve ever seen, let alone a full-featured device like the Apple Watch.

When paired with a Xiaomi smartphone, the Mi Band can alert you to things like phone calls by using vibration. Wouldn’t it be cool if it could alert you to notifications for certain iOS apps as well? Now it can, courtesy of a new jailbreak tweak called MiBand Utility from developer Pigi Galdi. Read More

 

‘Gauss’ spices up the Music app with impressive blur effects

by Jeff Benjamin on May 26, 2015

Gauss—which is named after German mathematician Karl Gauss, from which the Gaussian Blur derives its name—is a jailbreak tweak that adds blur, tint color, and text color effects to the stock Music app. Gauss lets you change up the blur radius, saturation, and more. You can even preview the look of the changes via the tweak’s preferences. Read More

 

StopAutoDelete stops the iOS cursor from deleting entire words

by Jeff Benjamin on May 26, 2015

When you hold the delete button on the iOS keyboard, eventually the cursor will start to delete entire words in an effort to speed up the deletion process. While at times, this comes in handy from a speed perspective, I often find it more of a nuisance; it seems to always delete words that I had no intention of removing.

StopAutoDelete is a jailbreak tweak that slows down deleting on iOS, placing a sort of limiter on deleting and preventing whole words from being delete at once. Have a look at our video walkthrough for a full explanation. Read More

 

iPicar: hide specific Messages conversations when unlocking your iPhone

by Jeff Benjamin on May 26, 2015

Have you ever had the desire to hide specific Messages app conversations? What about the ability to do so when unlocking your iPhone?

iPicar is a recently released jailbreak tweak that allows you to do just that. By means of a special passcode that’s used to unlock your iPhone, iPicar can hide specific conversations in the Messages app with ease. Read More

 

Recents is a jailbreak tweak for viewing recent calls in Notification Center

by Jeff Benjamin on May 26, 2015

Recents is a new jailbreak tweak that allows you to view recent phone calls and FaceTime calls directly in Notification Center. With the $1.49 package, which comes with a free trial, you can make calls directly from Notification Center, even if your device is locked.

By adding a tab next to the Today and Notifications tabs in Notification Center, Recents lets you view incoming, outgoing and missed calls with ease. It also lets you delete individual calls, all calls, and it works with a variety of other jailbreak tweaks such as Copic and LockInfo.

Read More

 

Let’s Talk iOS 083: Slap that bass

by Jeff Benjamin on May 26, 2015

Episode 83: A discussion of upcoming Apple hardware, Jeff tries out a new Android phone, new details on iOS 9, and Cody finally gets his Apple Watch.

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RippleBoard: add ripple effects to the iOS Home screen

by Jeff Benjamin on May 26, 2015

RippleBoard is a new tweak that brings tap indicators to the iOS Home screen. Whenever you tap the screen, or launch an app, you get a cool little ripple effect on the Home screen.

But RippleBoard isn’t just limited to on screen taps. As you’ll see from the tweak’s preferences, there are other things that you can do with RippleBoard, including customizing the range and duration of the ripple effects. Read More

 

Aeuria LS is a beautiful Lock screen tweak for iOS

by Jeff Benjamin on May 26, 2015

Great standout tweaks seem to be few and far between as of late, but the developer of Aeuria LS obviously has other thoughts about the matter. Aeuria LS is an original and wonderful-looking Lock screen tweak for jailbroken devices, that presents the current time in a unique manner.

Conceptualized by Zach Williams and programmed by Bryce Pauken, Aeuria LS is one of the best looking jailbreak tweaks that I’ve seen in a while. It brings a Lock screen clock interface to the iPhone that features customizations by clock type, time format, clock face font, color, blur, and more.

It’s a simple looking tweak that you’ll find to be incredibly deep, and a technical work of art once you delve into its preferences. Have a look at our video overview of Aeuria LS for more details. Read More

 

IllLookLater: prevent iPhone screen wake when receiving notifications

by Jeff Benjamin on May 24, 2015

Do you find that many of your incoming notifications don’t warrant the awakening of the Lock screen on your iPhone? Perhaps you think that waking up your iPhone every time you receive a notification is a waste of precious battery.

If you feel that way, then you may want to look into IllLookLater, a recent jailbreak tweak that’s available on Cydia’s BigBoss repo free of charge. IllLookLater makes it so that you can limit the amount of apps that wake the Lock screen when receiving a notification. In other words, it lets you pick and choose the apps that you deem worthy. Read More

 

Color Convos: assign colors to Messages app conversations

by Jeff Benjamin on May 24, 2015

Color Convos is a jailbreak tweak that serves as a Messages app addon. It lets you quickly assign different colors to the outgoing message bubbles in a Messages app conversation.

Why is this useful? The developer presents an interesting use case scenario. He suggests that Color Convos will make it easier to discern who you are sending a message to, ensuring that you are sending messages to the correct contact, lending peace of mind.

Does Color Convos work as expected? Have a look at our walkthrough to find out. Read More

 

How to advance the time on your Apple Watch

by Jeff Benjamin on May 24, 2015

It’s a little strange to me, but some people prefer setting their watches a few minutes ahead in order to provide themselves with a mental buffer when it comes to the time. I’ve never totally understood this, but the basic psychology behind such a thing is that it makes it so that you’re always “ahead” from a timing standpoint.

One would think that such an ability would not be easily doable on Apple Watch, since the time is set automatically, but that isn’t the case. Apple has included a handy feature in the Apple Watch settings just for the folks that like to run a few minutes ahead. Read More

 

LongScreen now supports combining Apple Watch screenshots

by Jeff Benjamin on May 24, 2015

One of my favorite screenshot managing apps on iOS, LongScreen, has been updated to support Apple Watch screenshots. This means that you can now combine multiple Apple Watch screenshots into a single screenshot, all on your iPhone.

The app, which is well-known for its ability to combine iPhone screenshots with padding and a cleaned up status bar, is now on version 1.3.

You can purchase LongScreen from the App Store for only $2.99, a price that’s totally worth it when you consider the time that you can save from using it. Read More

 

How to view and manage notifications on your Apple Watch

by Jeff Benjamin on May 24, 2015

There’s nothing more liberating than being able to take action on an incoming notification directly from your watch. Once you’ve configured your Apple Watch notifications, it’s time to reap the rewards and actually view those notifications.

There are two basic ways to view notifications on Apple Watch—immediately as they arrive, or later via Notification Center. In this concise Apple Watch guide, we’ll show you how to do both. We’ll also show you how to manage those same notifications after they arrive on your wrist. Read More

 

How to manage and customize watch faces on Apple Watch

by Jeff Benjamin on May 24, 2015

The watch face is what you will see the majority of the time while using your Apple Watch. After all, regardless of all of the cool things that it can do with apps, glances, and the like, it’s still a digital watch in its most basic form.

That said, the Apple Watch is one of the deepest watches that you can by from a feature standpoint. Even when it comes to something as simple as a watch face, things veer from the shallow.

In a previous post, we showed you how to change your Apple Watch face. In this post, we’ll discuss more basics and teach you how to manage and customize watch faces. Read More

 

Alternatum brings an app switcher and toggles to Reachability

by Jeff Benjamin on May 24, 2015

Alternatum is yet another jailbreak tweak that piggybacks on the Reachability feature introduced with the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. It allows you to add a host of new features to the Reachability view such as an app switcher, toggles and more.

Unfortunately, I don’t currently own any jailbroken devices that feature Reachability, but Alternatum does bring the ability to use a simple Activator gesture to mimic Reachability. Does it work well?

Read More

 
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