SearchDefine: search for word definitions right from Spotlight

By Anthony Bouchard on Jun 22, 2016

There come times when you need to define words quickly, and because iOS has no dedicated Dictionary app, there is really no convenient way to define a word when you’re stuck.

Rather than downloading a third-party dictionary app from the App Store to clutter your Home screen even further, a new jailbreak tweak called SearchDefine lets you define words via the iOS dictionary right from Spotlight. Read More

 

Apple TV’s universal search expands to nine new video channels

By Christian Zibreg on Jun 21, 2016

After adding support for video content from Bravo, E!, Syfy and USA channels ten days ago, tvOS’s universal search feature was refreshed earlier today with official support for nine additional channels. The full up-to-date list of universal search providers can be found in Apple’s support document. Read More

 

We wanted better App Store search results, but we got ads instead

By Sébastien Page on Jun 21, 2016

Search in the App Store is something both users and developers have been complaining about for years, because quite frankly, it’s terrible. Unless you know exactly what you’re looking for, you’re more than likely to not find anything really relevant when typing in basic search terms.

With Phil Schiller now in charge of App Stores, we were all hoping for some big changes, and to be fair, there have been. App review times have tremendously improved, for instance. Personally, I was hoping that Apple would finally fix search in the App Store, but instead, the company gave us search ads. Read More

 

iOS 10 tidbit: getting to Spotlight from any app, in an instant

By Christian Zibreg on Jun 17, 2016

Since installing iOS 10 Preview on my iPhone 6s I’ve been discovering these little gems that, in my personal opinion, will make this particular revision to Apple’s mobile OS the most worthwhile upgrade yet.

Aside from major new headlining features, it’s the little things that make our hearts sing. One of such subtle refinements is the ability to quickly get to Spotlight Search from any app. Read More

 

Apple TV universal search adds support for content from Bravo, E!, Syfy and USA channels

By Christian Zibreg on Jun 10, 2016

Two weeks after NBCUniversal’s Bravo, Syfy and E! apps launched on the fourth-generation Apple TV, content from these channels is now available through the device’s universal search feature.

In addition, the Apple TV now also surfaces videos from the USA channel when using tvOS’s text or Siri voice search, said MacRumors. Read More

 

Apple details search ads and subscription enhancements coming to App Store this fall

By Christian Zibreg on Jun 8, 2016

Apple today announced a pair of major changes that will be coming to the App Store this fall, which it said were designed to help grow developer app’s business and engage with new and existing customers.

Both the rumored search ads and various subscription enhancements will soon be available across any app category, games included. Read More

 

Thank you, Siri: mobile voice assistant usage is rising at a rapid clip

By Christian Zibreg on Jun 2, 2016

After perusing a massive 238-slide deck that is Mary Meeker’s new 2016 Internet Trends Report this morning, a slide has captured my attention that summarizes the trend toward voice searches and digital assistants. It says that in five years time at least half of all searches will be either through images or speech, which is fascinating.

What I find even more remarkable is the fact that Siri alone handled more than one billion requests per week through speech as of June 2015. Read More

 

Google’s iOS app gains Accelerated Mobile Pages, sports highlight videos in Now cards

By Christian Zibreg on May 27, 2016

Google’s native Search application for the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad this morning received a newsworthy update in the App Store, gaining faster browsing with support for Accelerated Mobile Pages from major publishers and another feature which allows you to instantly watch sports highlight videos in Now cards.

The app’s available for free on the App Store. Read More

 

Spotlight Suggestions expand to seven new countries, including India and Hong Kong

By Christian Zibreg on May 24, 2016

Spotlight Suggestions, a feature that recommends content from the Internet when searching with Spotlight on an iPhone, iPod touch or iPad with iOS 9.0+ or a Mac running OS X 10.11 El Capitan or later, has expanded to seven additional markets: Hong Kong, India, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore and United Arab Emirates.

Counting these regions, Spotlight Suggestions are now available in a total of 26 major markets around the world, listed on Apple’s iOS Feature Availability webpage. Read More

 

Apple TV’s universal search feature picks up support for NBC shows

By Christian Zibreg on May 24, 2016

After adding support for finding CBS television shows last month, owners of the fourth-generation Apple TV can now use tvOS’s universal search feature to find video content from NBC, like “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon,” using Siri or Dictation. Read More

 

Tip: using emojis in iOS Spotlight Search

By Christian Zibreg on May 24, 2016

iPhone, iPod touch and iPad users can use emoji as search terms in Spotlight Search to some rather interesting effects. It’s unclear when this feature was added or activated.

That being said, bringing up iOS’s built-in Emoji keyboard to type an emoji in Spotlight’s search field will produce matching results related to the character’s meaning, as highlighted by Cult of Mac. Read More

 

Introducing Assistant, Google’s conversational AI helper

By Christian Zibreg on May 18, 2016

In addition to announcing a pair of new iPhone apps for messaging and video calling and a preview of its Amazon Echo-killer, the Google I/O 2016 keynote saw some pretty exciting news regarding the search giant’s all-new two-way conversational assistant, coming soon to all your devices.

Named Assistant, it’s a big upgrade to Google Now that builds “on all our years of investment in deeply understanding users’ questions”. Read More

 

Tip: this secret Safari shortcut quickly loads your last search results

By Christian Zibreg on May 17, 2016

SnapBack, a long-standing and very easily overlooked Safari for Mac feature, can save you a ton of clicks if you search a lot, and most of us do. With SnapBack, you can go right back to the last full search results page, even after traveling multiple pages in from your search results.

Part of the reason most users aren’t familiar with SnapBack has to do with Apple’s decision to remove the little orange SnapBack icon from Safari’s address bar and bury the feature  in the menus.

Here’s that secret SnapBack shortcut that everyone should start using right now. Read More

 

Google’s own Amazon Echo-like accessory, dubbed ‘Chirp’ is landing soon

By Christian Zibreg on May 13, 2016

Code-named ‘Chirp’, Google’s upcoming hardware appliance will integrate the company’s search and voice assistant technologies akin to the Amazon Echo, and is landing soon, Re/code reported yesterday.

The rumored device should resemble Google’s OnHub wireless router, according to several sources.

If the increasing popularity of Amazon’s integrated wireless speaker and voice command device is an indication—it’s estimated they sold three million Echo units to date—Google’s rumored accessory could prove popular with users, especially given Google’s expertise in voice and search. Read More

 

Google launches iPhone keyboard that lets you search and send GIFs, emojis and more

By Christian Zibreg on May 12, 2016

As promised, Google this morning launched its first software keyboard for the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad, called Gboard. Available free on the App Store, it integrates the power of Google Search, supports gesture-based typing, lets you send GIFs, emoticons and more. “No more app switching; just search and send, right from your keyboard,” said Google. Read More

 

Universal search on Apple TV has gained support for finding CBS shows

By Christian Zibreg on Apr 14, 2016

Apple continues to add more content sources to the universal search capability of the fourth-generation Apple TV. Last week, for example, it added Starz content to the Apple TV’s universal search.

And now, owners of the set-top box who installed CBS’s tvOS application can take advantage of Siri to find such CBS shows as “Big Bang Theory”, “NCIS“, “Supergirl” and others, just by using their voice. Apple’s support document was updated yesterday to reflect the addition of CBS to the universal search lineup for the fourth-generation Apple TV. Read More

 

Google optimizes the layout of Now cards in native search app for iPad

By Christian Zibreg on Apr 11, 2016

Google on Monday pushed a small refresh to its native Search app for the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad in the App Store. Bumped to version 14.0, the software features an optimized layout of the Now cards to make better use of the iPad’s screen real estate.

“Updated structure for Now cards on iPad, designed to keep your content organized and better surface the info you need most,” reads a line from Google’s release notes accompanying the 65.4-megabyte download. Read More

 

Google working on iPhone keyboard of its own with gesture-based typing, built-in search & more

By Christian Zibreg on Mar 23, 2016

Internet giant Google is developing a software keyboard for the iPhone which incorporates gesture-based typing, built-in GIF search and a variety of other search options, according to The Verge.

“The keyboard, which has been in circulation among employees for months, is designed to boost the number of Google searches on iOS,” as per the report. Read More

 

Explore the world of Wikipedia in revamped iOS app with 3D Touch, Explore feed and more

By Christian Zibreg on Mar 10, 2016

Wikipedia, the world’s encyclopedia and knowledge base, has never had an attractive mobile app. That changes today with a major refresh to its app in the App Store permitting users to explore Wikipedia content tailored to their interests via an all-new Explore feed.

Navigations has been greatly simplified with new touch-friendly ways to discover content, 3D Touch support, Spotlight Search integration and more.

The app was obviously designed with the theme of exploration in mind.

“We all know Wikipedia as a quick fact-checking resource, but the new app is designed to make exploring knowledge on Wikipedia a journey,” developers told me via email. Read More

 

10 handy keyboard shortcuts to help you navigate Finder

By Anthony Bouchard on Mar 4, 2016

Just like many other native OS X apps, Finder offers a variety of keyboard shortcuts to help you perform actions more quickly.

Although you’re probably used to pointing and clicking on whatever it may be that you want in your Finder window, using your keyboard can be just as effective, if not more effective, at getting you around your Mac’s filesystem faster.

In this piece, we’ll share 10 handy keyboard shortcuts that you can use while you’re in Finder to navigate your filesystem. Read More

 
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