How to use bubble and screen effects in Messages for iPhone and iPad

By Christian Zibreg on Sep 22, 2016

Apple’s expressive Messages app for the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch allows you to change the way the message bubbles look and deliver your chats across in an impactful way with animations that take over the entire Messages screen.

Messages offer four built-in effects to animate the bubbles with different expressions and five fullscreen animations. Here’s how you can use these animated effects to deliver your chats in style. Read More

 

Facebook Messenger gains iOS 10 integration on the Lock screen and in Phone app

By Christian Zibreg on Sep 22, 2016

Facebook just pushed a major update to its Messenger software in the App Store. On iPhones with iOS 10, the app now takes advantage of Apple’s new CallKit framework to make audio (VoIP) calls from Messenger look and behave like normal cellular calls with full support for Lock screen and Phone integration.

Bumped to version 89.0, the app now shows incoming VoIP calls from Messenger contacts right on your Lock screen complete with fullscreen contact images, standard controls like the Mute, Keypad, Speaker, Add Call and Video buttons and more. Read More

 

Snapchat rolls out Sticker Search

By Christian Zibreg on Sep 22, 2016

Snapchat recently rolled out a minor refresh to its iPhone application in the App Store, bumping version number to 9.39.3.0 and bringing out a new Sticker Search feature. As the feature’s name suggests, this lets you find precisely the sticker you want simply by typing its description. A previous Snapchat update introduced a few tweaks, including support for caption styling with the new bold, underline and italic options. Read More

 

Google’s Allo messaging app hits the App Store and it logs all your chats

By Christian Zibreg on Sep 22, 2016

At the annual I/O developer conference in April 2016, Google previewed two new mobile apps: a one-to-one video calling app called Duo, which released in mid-August, and a messaging software called Allo, which surfaced on the App Store this morning as a free download.

It sports features commonly found in messaging apps and includes a built-in Assistant, Google’s conversational artificial intelligence helper, an Incognito mode and more.

While Google originally promised Allo would only store messages transiently and in non-identifiable form, the firm’s had a change of heart as Allo logs all chats by default. Read More

 

Tip: use Messages low quality image mode to conserve precious cellular data

By Christian Zibreg on Sep 21, 2016

Apple’s Messages app provides an optional iOS-only mode which cuts down your cellular data consumption to a bare minimum when sending image attachments. I don’t know about you, but I worry about sharing high-resolution images when cellular data is on. In my experience, most normals are oblivious to the fact that sending a single shot-on-iPhone photograph through iMessage burns through one to five megabytes of data, sometimes even more.

In low quality mode, Messages uses only 100KB per image attachment. Another way to think about it: you can send 30 to 50 images for the same amount of data required to share a full-resolution attachment in Messages. In this brief tutorial, we’ll teach you how to tell Messages to send lower quality images in order to optimize your cellular data consumption and prevent unwanted overage fees. Read More

 

Apple seeds first beta of iOS 10.1 with new Portrait camera mode

By Cody Lee on Sep 21, 2016

Apple on Wednesday issued the first beta for iOS 10.1. Registered developers can grab the new software via the over-the-air update mechanism in the iOS Settings app, or via Apple’s online developer portal.

Perhaps the most significant change in this first 10.1 beta is the addition of Portrait camera mode— a software feature for the iPhone 7 Plus Apple showed off earlier this month that creates a ‘bokeh’ effect.

Read More

 

How to save Instagram posts as drafts

By Christian Zibreg on Sep 21, 2016

Instagram has been testing a Drafts feature with a subset of its users since this summer. Today, the company has rolled out Drafts to everyone. With Instagram Drafts, you can save any half-finished photo edits and work on them later, which is handy for those times you get too busy to pos right away. And if you run an Instagram account for your business, letting your social media manager save a post as a draft makes it easy for you to review it in advance of publishing. Read More

 

Daily Deals: $300 off 13.3-inch MacBook Pro, JBL Charge 2+ speaker $70, and more

By Cody Lee on Sep 20, 2016

iDB’s Daily Deal post is a roundup of our favorite deals on tech and tech-related products from around the web. This includes everything from smartphones, tablets and accessories, to connected devices and even video games.

Every deal you see below has been hand-picked based on a variety of factors including personal experience, online reviews from customers and experts, and discount percentage. So what are you waiting for? Get shopping! Read More

 

Daily Deals: MacBook Air $480, iPhone 6s $370, and more

By Cody Lee on Sep 19, 2016

iDB’s Daily Deal post is a roundup of our favorite deals on tech and tech-related products from around the web. This includes everything from smartphones, tablets and accessories, to connected devices and even video games.

Every deal you see below has been hand-picked based on a variety of factors including personal experience, online reviews from customers and experts, and discount percentage. So what are you waiting for? Get shopping! Read More

 

Enjoy 2 months of Apple Music for free with this gift card deal

By Cody Lee on Sep 19, 2016

Current (or potential future) Apple Music users are going to want to check out this deal from PayPal. The e-payment company is offering a gift card good for a 1-year subscription to Apple’s streaming music service for just $99.

Since an individual subscription to Apple Music is typically $9.99/month, this makes for a ~$20 discount—or 2 free months of service. The gift card can be purchased via PayPal’s eBay store and is delivered within minutes by email. Read More

 

Media, polls and quoted tweets no longer count against Twitter’s 140-character limit

By Christian Zibreg on Sep 19, 2016

In May of this year, Twitter promised it would be stopping counting media and other non-text content against its 140-character limit. Today, the company announced that embedded photos, videos, GIFs, polls and quoted tweets no longer count toward your 140 characters.

Twitter originally promised to also stop counting user mentions like @iDownloadBlog, but didn’t specify today when it’ll drop @usernames from the character count. Read More

 

How to play YouTube and other web videos inline in Safari on iPhone

By Christian Zibreg on Sep 18, 2016

In iOS 10, Safari hasn’t received a major facelift like some other Apple apps have. That’s not saying Safari doesn’t have a few tricks up its sleeve that make browsing the web a more pleasing experience for everyone. One of the little things about iOS 10 that I’m sure many folks will appreciate is the ability for Safari to play videos inline on the iPhone and iPod touch, too.

This feature has been present on iPads for years.

Thankfully, iOS 10 now lets you watch most web videos inline on your iPhone and iPod touch, even while multitasking in Safari. Telling Safari to play a video inside the webpage isn’t as obvious as it could have been, so here’s a little tutorial to get you up to speed. Read More

 

Jailbreak tweaks of the week: FlashAlert, MusicalKeyboard, & more…

By Anthony Bouchard on Sep 18, 2016

This week has been busy for those of us at iDB since iOS 10 was released to the public for iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad. Of course, the jailbreak community doesn’t sleep just because Apple releases a new firmware update.

In this roundup, we’ll talk about all the jailbreak tweaks that were released in Cydia this week, starting with our favorites. Read More

 

Hardbound, Couchy, RAW and other apps to check out this weekend

By Cody Lee on Sep 17, 2016

It’s been a crazy week, what with the iPhone 7 launch and all. So we know everyone is ready to kick back and relax this weekend with some fun new apps and games. The latest edition of our Apps of the Week roundup includes a unique reading app, a TV series manager, and a new raw camera app. Plus we have a couple of new games for you to check out. Read More

 

Minor Pokémon GO update improves stability of GO Plus accessory, adds bug fixes

By Anthony Bouchard on Sep 17, 2016

Game publisher Niantic has launched a minor update for the popular GPS-based Pokémon GO game for the iOS platform bug fixes.

Version 1.7.1 can now be downloaded from the App Store and comes just three days after the update that enabled buddy Pokémon in the game. Read More

 

Apple’s free app of the week: Super Phantom Cat

By Cody Lee on Sep 15, 2016

Apple on Thursday updated its App of the Week promotion with the game Super Phantom Cat. This means that for the next 7 days, you can download this popular retro platformer for both iPhone and iPad for free—a solid savings of $2.

This charming side scroller is beloved for its beautiful retro graphics and whimsical character design, retro styling, and easy Mario-esque controls. It also features an awesome chip tune soundtrack, unlockable characters, and bonus levels. Read More

 

iOS 10 jailbreak: hacker Luca Todesco shows off iPad with MobileSubstrate support

By Anthony Bouchard on Sep 15, 2016

Less than two weeks ago, iOS hacker Luca Todesco, better known to the community as @qwertyoruiop, showed off a working jailbreak on iOS 10, that he called yaluX.

Now he’s at it again with an even more detailed video that demonstrates working Cydia Substrate-based jailbreak tweaks. Read More

 

Oz: Broken Kingdom, an RPG game demoed at iPhone 7 keynote, just hit the App Store

By Christian Zibreg on Sep 15, 2016

At each iPhone introduction, Apple would usually invite one or more game developers on stage to demonstrate titles which show off the power of its latest chips. This month’s iPhone 7 introduction was no exception. To showcase what’s possible with the new A10 Fusion chip, Apple invited This Game Studio co-founder Heather Price on stage to show off a mobile game called Oz: Broken Kingdom, which just launched in the App Store as a freemium download.

A new take on Oz, Broken Kingdom sports crisp and detailed Metal-driven graphics that take full advantage of the A10 Fusion chip, although it supports older devices as well. Read More

 

YouTube for iPhone picks up 3D Touch shortcuts

By Christian Zibreg on Sep 14, 2016

To say that YouTube, one of my favorite mobile apps from Google, has poor 3D touch support would be an understatement: it’s been now a full year since the iPhone 6s introduced the world to 3D Touch and yet support for the technology is literally non-existent in YouTube for iOS.

Conveniently ahead of the iPhone 7’s arrival, Google yesterday moved to assuage some of the concerns of users who have been craving for 3D Touch in the app, releasing a small update which enables some interesting shortcuts on the Home screen. Read More

 

WhatsApp rolls out its iOS 10 update with Phone/Siri support & more

By Christian Zibreg on Sep 14, 2016

WhatsApp is one of the showcase apps for CallKit, Apple’s new framework allowing VoIP calls to integrate with iOS 10’s Phone app and behave like cellular calls. Today, WhatsApp has rolled out its anticipated update which enables integration with Phone and Siri on iOS 10 while bringing out half a dozen other features and improvements like forwarding multiple chats at once, a new iOS 10 widget that lets you go to a recent WhatsApp chat or see which chats have unread messages, and more. Read More