Slow UI animations on Yosemite? Try this simple tip

By Sébastien Page on Jan 28, 2015

I currently have two machines running Yosemite: one is a brand new Retina iMac, and the other is an older MacBook Air. Both these machines have been feeling incredibly slow in regards to general animations of the User Interface. One obvious way to test this is to bring up Exposé, which then turns both my Macs into stuttering slugs. While I can kind of understand why my old MacBook Air would behave like this, there is absolutely no excuse for my iMac to. Talking about this issue with someone at the Apple Store, I was offered an original workaround. Read More

 

Microsoft just made OneDrive totally awesome

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 28, 2015

Wednesday, Microsoft rolled out an all-new version of its OneDrive sync client for the Mac while bringing out a plethora of really cool features on the web and releasing a revamped iOS app.

The iOS client now supports OneDrive for Business accounts so basically your work and life can now be on all your Apple devices in a single app.

Not only does the redesigned iPhone and iPad app look nicer, it also lets you search photos by tags and create gorgeous albums. It even recognizes text in photos and PDFs and integrates with the popular password-management software 1Password and LastPass. Read More

 

What kind of apps do you want to see on iDB?

By Sébastien Page on Jan 28, 2015

We review tons of apps here on iDB, covering the vast majority of categories available in the App Store. But are these apps interesting to you? For instance, I don’t care much about gaming, and I’m much more interested in learning about new productivity apps. You, on the other hand, might have no interest in productivity apps but would like to see more News-related apps covered on iDB.

To make sure we publish reviews you actually care about, we thought that asking you directly what you want to see on iDB would be the best way to go at it, which is why we have created this simple poll. Read More

 

How to export iCloud contacts

By Sébastien Page on Jan 28, 2015

We’ve already seen several options to export contacts as there are many ways to do just that. Sometimes, apps can help, and sometimes, you can do so directly from your Mac. But what if you don’t have your Mac handy and want to export your contacts? Assuming you use iCloud to store all your contacts, there is an easy way to export them from there. Read More

 

Marissa Mayer wants to make Yahoo default search engine in Safari

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 28, 2015

Embattled CEO Marisa Mayer just bought herself some more air cover by spinning off Yahoo’s 15 percent stake in Alibaba into a new public company. But Mayer is still under pressure to boost Yahoo’s core biz which has been eroding steadily. Now, MacRumors passes along a transcript of Yahoo’s conference call when Mayer praised Apple’s Safari browser as the premier search platform.

She called fans of the Apple web browser “among the most lucrative users in the world” and expressed interest in Yahoo becoming the default search engine in Safari. Read More

 

LongScreen is a great app for combining screenshots

By Sébastien Page on Jan 28, 2015

I don’t think anyone takes more screenshots than an Apple blogger. They’re particularly convenient when doing an app review where you want to illustrate the post with proper screenshots showing the app in action. Oftentimes, we like to put screenshots side by side to give an even better overview of the app, which isn’t always a straightforward task.

Up until now, my workflow consisted of AirDropping screenshots to my iMac, and using a combination of Keyboard Maestro shortcuts and Pixelmator stitching. Painful! But thanks to a new app called LongScreen, this workflow is now considerably streamlined. Read More

 

Facebook’s Paper app now supports sharing from iOS Favorites album and more

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 28, 2015

Facebook’s Paper for iPhone app has been refreshed today with improved performance as well as faster way of sharing photos, in addition to fixing a few issues “you’ve let us know about.”

When sharing photos, your Camera Roll items are now organized by date. Even better, the app now supports the new Favorites album introduced in iOS 8 which collates the images you’ve favorited by tapping on the heart icon in the iOS Photos app. Read More

 

Win a new iMac from the iDownloadBlog Deals store

By iDB Deals on Jan 28, 2015

Yesterday we announced the launch of our new iDownloadBlog Deals store, and we promised some epic giveaways. Today we’re kicking it off with a bang: we’re giving away a new iMac!

When the new iMac was released at the end of last year, we were all drooling over this beautiful piece of tech and well… most of us still are.  Probably the sleekest desktop computer ever made, the iMac is only a few inches thick at fattest, and slims down to razor-thin edges. We’re giving away a 21.5-inch model, boasting a 1.4 GHz dual-core Intel Core i5 Processor, as well as a 500GB hard drive and 8GB of memory.

Valued at $1,099, we’re guessing you want to win this beautiful, beautiful computer. So how do you enter? Go the giveaway page on the iDownloadBlog Deals store, and create an account! You’ll get extra entries for following iDB on Twitter and Google+, and get five extra entries for each friend you refer, so don’t forget to share your custom share link on Facebook and Twitter.

Stay tuned for more awesome giveaways from the iDB Deals store.

Enter the giveaway here!

 

Spotify arriving to PlayStation as Sony axes its ill-fated Music Unlimited service

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 28, 2015

Sony has finally pulled the plug on its unsuccessful music-streaming service, Music Unlimited.

Destined to be shut down on March 29, 2015, it’ll be succeeded by a new Sony service called PlayStation Music and based entirely on the Spotify service and its backend.

From the get-go, the new service will have full access to over 30 million songs and 1.5 billion playlists on Spotify.

PlayStation Music will be debuting this Spring in 41 markets and be available on the PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4 consoles, as well as on the Xperia smartphones and tablets. Support for other mobile and desktop devices will be added at a later stage. Read More

 

Tumblr app adds new alert types, better 1Password integration, likes/follows on Lock screen, more

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 28, 2015

As growth of Yahoo-owned Tumblr continues unabated, new features are being added to the official iOS app on a regular basis.

After picking up support for two-factor authentication last October, the new Tumblr 3.8 for iOS now includes greatly improved integration with the popular 1Password password-management app, as well as with Authy, a handy iPhone software for generating two-factor codes. Read More

 

eBay working on bidding app for Apple Watch

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 28, 2015

eBay may be developing an app for the Apple Watch which ties to its existing iPhone and iPad software, as per a job listing AppleInsider highlighted yesterday.

Originally posted to eBay’s careers webpage in November, the ad was spotted recently on LinkedIn.

The ad states the bespoke Watch app is being developed by the company’s New Technology Group, which employs over 200 engineers in product development in Portland.

An ideal candidate will “design and implement elegant solutions for the Apple Watch that will complement our core iOS eBay app,” reads the ad. Read More

 

FCC to hotels: blocking Wi-Fi hotspots is illegal!

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 28, 2015

Many of us have been there. You just checked in to a nice hotel and went right to your room. After taking a shower, you pull out your Mac to connect to a personal Wi-Fi hotspot in the hope of getting some work done. But alas, it won’t work. Slowly but surely, a sinking feeling sets in that you’re being forced to use the hotel’s exorbitantly priced Wi-Fi.

The United States Federal Communications Commission (FCC) wants to put an end to the practice and on Tuesday issued a public enforcement advisory warning hotel chains and other commercial establishments that intentionally blocking or interfering with Wi-Fi hotspots is illegal. Read More

 

Opinion: don’t hold your hopes high for next-generation Apple TV this year

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 28, 2015

Between the bigger iPhones, new and faster iPads, Apple Pay, the Watch and latest versions of iOS and OS X, the Apple TV project appears to remain on the back burner for now.

Whether or not the decision is meant to prevent spreading Apple too thin and keep its engineers focused on products that matter over a longer arc of time is anyone’s guess.

Now, I’m not pretending that I’m privy to Cupertino’s inner workings.

But the fact remains that, for the time being, Apple seems content with simply stuffing the set-top box with new content sources. Yesterday, for example, Apple TV owners saw the addition of Sports Illustrated’s 120 SPORTS network.

Of course, Tim Cook & Co. must do a whole lot more than simply keep adding new channels to the box. Fans, on the other hand, have been keeping their fingers crossed for an Apple TV hardware upgrade sporting a major OS update and new features like DV-R, live TV functionality, an app store to download and play games on it with the use of ‘Made for iPhone’ controllers.

Watchers are now hoping for an Apple TV refresh at WWDC 2015. But if I were you, I wouldn’t hold my hopes high for a major hardware revision to the set-top box in 2015, and here’s why. Read More

 

TodayRemote is a widget with iTunes playback controls

By Lory Gil on Jan 28, 2015

With Apple’s Remote app, you can access your computer’s iTunes playback controls so you don’t have to get off the couch to switch songs. But, unlocking your iPhone, opening the app, and selecting your device is still just way too much work.

TodayRemote lets you control playback of iTunes right from the Lock screen of your iPhone. You’ll never have to work for your music again. Read More

 

Facebook rolls out new Super Bowl experience

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 28, 2015

Super Bowl XLIX is upon us and Facebook wants to beat out Twitter to the punch and become the epicenter of conversation. Building on the more than 50 million people who joined the conversation on Facebook during last year’s Super Bowl, the social networking service today announced a brand new experience at facebook.com/superbowl.

Replacing Twitter as your Super Bowl companion begins with official posts from the NFL/NBC and related stories by teams and individual players. You’ll also find live scoring updates, real-time reactions, posts from your friends (with “watching Super Bowl XLIX” in their status updates) and more, all neatly organized in one place. Read More

 

Universal Pictures announces cast list for “Steve Jobs” biopic based on Walter Isaacson’s biography

By Jake Smith on Jan 27, 2015

Universal Pictures has finally announced the set-in-stone cast for the upcoming Steve Jobs biopic, along with word the picture has begun shooting in San Francisco with Academy Award-winning director Danny Boyle directing. The film will simply be titled “Steve Jobs” and will be based on the biography by Walter Isaacson. Read More

 

App Recap: notable discounts, updates and releases for January 27

By Cody Lee on Jan 27, 2015

The App Recap is iDB’s daily roundup of notable news from the wacky world of iOS software. Below you’ll find a list of discounts, updates and new releases we think are worth checking out. Today we have some great discounts for you, as well as some interesting new apps and games. Read More

 

Photos for Mac goes from “early 2015” to “available at a later date”

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 27, 2015

Photos for Mac, a missing piece in the iCloud Photo Library puzzle, has just gotten delayed until later this year.

Last summer, Apple took us by surprise saying it would cease development of Aperture and transition users to Photos for Mac, a new app that was supposed to replace iPhoto on OS X Yosemite as well. But Yosemite came and went and native Photos Mac app was nowhere to be seen.

Apple then gave us a vague new shipping date: “early 2015.” However, the updated wording in this support docs now lists the app as being “available at a later date.” Read More

 

More than 25 million Apple TVs sold to date, though growth may be slowing

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 27, 2015

Forgetting for a minute that Apple obliterated expectations by announcing a truly fantastic 74.5 million iPhone sales while earning an astounding $18 billion in profit, how did the company’s hobby project, the Apple TV, do?

As you may have guessed, Piper Jaffray’s Gene Munster got that question in during the Q&A section of Apple’s conference call with analyst, to which CEO Tim Cook responded by confirming his company has managed to move about 25 million set-top boxes to date. Read More

 

15 interesting points from Apple’s Q1 2015 earnings call

By Cody Lee on Jan 27, 2015

Apple announced its financial results for its fiscal first quarter of 2015 this afternoon, and the numbers are staggering. The company sold 75.4 million iPhones and earned $74.6 billion in revenue, smashing both Wall Street expectations and its own records.

We’re just finishing up the conference call, where Tim Cook and other members of the executive team discussed Apple’s performance, and offered up some insights into its future. And as usual, we’ve rounded up the 15 most interesting points for you below. Read More