Apple engineer explains how FaceTime came out of work done for Game Center

By Christian Zibreg on Apr 24, 2014

When Apple was unveiling a new video-calling capability on the then new iPhone 4 at the WWDC 2010 keynote, Steve Jobs presented the feature as one of his famous ‘one more thing’ moments.

FaceTime debuted as a hassle-free video calling service between iPhone 4 devices and was initially Wi-Fi-only, but Apple eventually rolled it out across the lineup so it’s available across Mac, iPhone, iPod touch and iPad devices on both Wi-Fi and cellular.

The engineer behind the feature, Roberto Garcia, was forced to spill the beans on how FaceTime came out of work done for Game Center in his testimony during the fourth week of the second Apple vs. Samsung trial in California, here are the juiciest bits… Read More

 

iOS 8: better inter-app sharing, improvements to Messages, Notification Center, CarPlay and more

By Christian Zibreg on Mar 14, 2014

Continuing on his series of iOS 8 scoops, the usually reliable Apple blogger Mark Gurman is out with a new story offering alleged new findings pertaining to iOS 8′s Notification Center, Messages, Game Center, Voice Memos, CarPlay and inter-app communication.

The latter is obviously the highlight of the report because unlike Android, iOS has been plagued with very limited inter-app sharing. As a result, operations that are normally trivial on Android are virtually impossible on iOS.

For instance, there’s no way to edit a photo in one app and send it, say, to the Instagram app without having to go through the cumbersome process of exporting the image to your Camera roll first and then manually importing it into Instagram.

According to the report, iOS 8 could finally fix this problem. Jump past the fold for the full reveal… Read More

 

Developers now able to delete fake Game Center scores

By Cody Lee on Oct 29, 2013

Great news gamers! Apple has finally given developers the ability to manage their Game Center leaderboard listings for their games. The company posted the announcement yesterday afternoon on its developer portal.

Of course, the big deal here is that game-makers can now delete all of those ridiculous fake scores you see sitting at the top of various leaderboards, but the change will also allow them to block players who post them… Read More

 

Apple sticks it to cheaters with Game Center on iOS 7

By Oliver Haslam on Jun 15, 2013

All the talk about iOS 7 is, rightly or wrongly, revolving around the aesthetic changes that Apple has made, but that doesn’t mean that there aren’t plenty of alterations under the hood. Game Center, a feature often ignored by many, is receiving some much needed love with this update and those pesky cheaters are top of the agenda.

Whilst adding new Game Center features that aim to make recognizing cheaters as easy as possible for developers, Apple is also adding other development tools that will make the whole Game Center experience better as a whole. Improved leaderboards and challenges are just two of the changes coming in iOS 7.

With rampant cheating and high scores that have obviously tampered with, Game Center is set to receive its biggest overhaul yet, and most people won’t even notice what’s changed… Read More

 

Google announces Play game services coming to iOS

By Cody Lee on May 15, 2013

Google is in the middle of its I/O developer conference keynote right now, and so far it’s been pretty boring. There’s been no mention of consumer products yet, just some talk about developer API access and some new software and services.

The search giant did, however, unveil a new game service. Flying under the Google Play flag, the service resembles Apple’s Game Center, hosting leader boards, achievements, and facilitating real-time multiplayer. Oh, and it’s coming to iOS… Read More

 

New Game Center concept looks sharp without the textures

By Cody Lee on Jan 15, 2013

During its big executive shuffle last fall, Apple put expert designer Jony Ive in charge of all HI (Human Interface). And since then, there has been non-stop speculation regarding what kind of changes might be made to the ever-aging iOS.

And a lot of folks are wondering what the operating system would look like without all of the skeuomorphism — the leather, etc. textures. Well designer Adrian Maciburko might be on the right track with his “Crystal Interface” concept… Read More

 

Apple wins trademarks for the Retina moniker and the Game Center icon design

By Christian Zibreg on Dec 4, 2012

Apple today received two interesting trademark grants seeking to protect the Game Center icon design and the Apple-coined Retina moniker. The former describes a rounded icon divided into four quadrants, each sporting a distinct combination of colors and shapes. It was originally filed in June 2012 under international classes that cover multiplayer games, scoring and tracking game performance and “providing an online portal for social networking through virtual communities”.

More important than the Game Center icon is the widely used Retina name, now a registered trademark of Apple, Inc. Read More

 

Why Apple is just plain mediocre in web services

By Christian Zibreg on Nov 22, 2012

Recently, a pattern has begun taking shape that I fear signals something worryingly awful is afoot as excellence takes a back seat at Apple in favor of mediocre web services. It’s always been that way, critics might add. Indeed, here we are, at the end of 2012, and yet weekly outages of key iCloud services such as iMessage and FaceTime are still a norm rather than a rare exception.

While iCloud storm is raining on users, Apple seemingly struggles in figuring out how to sprinkle its magic dust on Internet software. With over half a billion iOS and Mac devices straining its data centers, something clearly had to give. The iPhone maker isn’t an isolated example: competitors experience outages, too. But Apple’s different in that its online woes are symptomatic of a much larger set of problems the company faces.

Cupertino’s infrastructure is lacking. For all the computational power its array of super data centers provide, Apple’s software underpinnings are outdated and increasingly incapable of handling high load. Software shortcomings are putting Apple at risk at a time when competitors like Google tap their massive scale and expertise to successfully marry hardware to Internet software in ways Apple cannot… Read More

 

Social gaming platform OpenFeint shutting down

By Cody Lee on Nov 19, 2012

It appears that OpenFeint, one of the first multiplayer gaming platforms for iOS, will be shutting down next month. The service was acquired by Japanese internet media company Gree in 2011 for $104 million. And last week, Gree announced that it would be shutting it down.

Even worse, the firm has only given developers a month’s notice to migrate away from OpenFeint. As of December 14th, the service will go offline, and any game or application still using it will either need to be updated, or will suffer from severely crippled online components… Read More

 

OS X 10.8.2 released, featuring Facebook integration, and better iMessage support

By Jeff Benjamin on Sep 19, 2012

A few days ago, I highlighted my experience with OS X 10.8.2, which is like the perfect supplement for Mac users who’ve just upgraded their mobile devices to iOS 6.

Some of the biggest features included is phone number support for iMessage, which makes the entire iMessage experience lightyears better than before, and Facebook single sign on integration.

Don’t be misled by the “.2″, as OS X 10.8.2 is a huge upgrade over OS X 10.8.1. Take a look inside for the change log, and stay tuned for videos showing off the new digs. Read More

 

Amazon outs GameCircle, it’s the Game Center for Kindle Fire games

By Christian Zibreg on Jul 11, 2012

Amazon is keen on taking its Kindle Fire tablet beyond reading e-stuff, listening to music and watching movies and has today announced GameCircle, a brand new application programming interface (API) for developers, with social gaming features akin to Apple’s Game Center on iOS devices (and soon Mountain Lion Macs). It’s got the basics nailed, the stuff like leaderboards and achievements. Amazon is hoping developers will quickly pick it up and enrich their Kindle Fire games and who knows, it may come in handy if the company decides upon releasing a phone of its own… Read More

 

Rumor: Google working on a Game Center rip-off for Android

By Christian Zibreg on May 10, 2012

The search giant Google is reportedly looking to replicate Apple’s Game Center with a native Android app of its own.

Despite the ongoing patent war waged between Apple and a bunch of Android backers over the look and feel of iOS software, Google is reportedly looking to simply copy Game Center.

The search firm needs own social gaming service so Android gamers have a central place to connect with each other, check out leaderboards, scores and challenge friends.

And if their other products are anything to go by, Google’s thing is likely to feature deep integration with Google+, their another social thing… Read More

 

Overachiever: Auto-Fill in Your Missing Game Center Achievements

By Cody Lee on Feb 3, 2012

It looks like we may never be able to trust the legitimacy of an impressive Game Center account ever again, thanks to this new jailbreak tweak from Ingmar Stein.

Aptly named Overachiever, Stein’s new tweak allows users to earn Game Center achievements without actually playing the required games or levels… Read More

 

Doodle Jump Finally Receives Update For Multiplayer Support

By Guest Author on Mar 31, 2011

Doodle Jump has been one of the most popular iOS games ever since its launch, and it has received several updates throughout the year. The latest update brings one of the most highly awaited features: online multiplayer.

Similar to other multiplayer games available in the App Store, you can play against another friend via Game Center or randomly be matched up against another player…

Read More

 
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