Report: Siri for Mac coming this fall via OS X 10.12 software update

By Christian Zibreg on Feb 24, 2016

This fall, Mac owners will at long last be able to converse with Siri as the voice-activated personal assistant makes its way into OS X 10.12, the next major release of Apple’s mobile operating system that powers Mac desktops and notebooks.

According to 9to5Mac’s reliable Mark Gurman, “Apple currently plans to use its next major release of the Mac operating system this fall to continue to expand Siri across its product lines.”

The news will no doubt make Mac owners happy. Siri, which debuted in 2011, is currently available across the iPhone, iPod touch, iPad, Apple Watch and the new Apple TV. It makes a lot of sense to bring Siri to the Mac given that processing power and battery life on desktop is much better than on mobile devices. Read More

 

Elgato Eve Energy review: a HomeKit-enabled wireless sensor & switch

By Andrew O'Hara on Feb 23, 2016

Apple’s HomeKit has had a bit of a rocky start. The home automation platform that was meant to tie all of your smart home devices together was plagued by delays from Apple, as well as manufacturers. Devices started to hit the market in the middle of last year, and this year at CES, we saw many new options that are slowly starting to trickle out. Today, we are going to take a look at one of those devices, Eve Energy from Elgato. It is a simple solutions for those who want to start or grow their smart home, without breaking the bank. Read More

 

Apple TV universal search gains support for Watch ABC and 3 additional Disney channels

By Christian Zibreg on Feb 23, 2016

A newly updated Apple support document has indicated that owners of the fourth-generation Apple TV have just gained the ability to search videos across four new content sources, Watch ABC and three major Disney properties: Disney Channel, Disney Jr and Disney X.D.

Users who have one of these channel apps installed on their device can now take advantage of Siri and tvOS’s universal search to have shows like “Modern Family” surfaced in their search results. Read More

 

How to select Siri voices for VoiceOver, Speak Screen and Speak Selection features

By Christian Zibreg on Feb 17, 2016

I’m not hearing impaired but that doesn’t prevent me from taking advantage of certain VoiceOver features on my iPhone. For instance, I sometimes use Speak Selection to get iOS to read a book to me as I’m surfing the web, or doing something else.

Being a non-native English speaker, I also rely on that feature to have my iPhone read aloud words and phrases whenever I’m unsure about their correct pronunciation, which is a lot of help—especially with the adjustable pitch and speaking rate.

Starting with iOS 8, a number of options for the Siri voices you can use for the VoiceOver, Speak Screen and Speak Selection features have become available. This tutorial explains how to choose a voice for Speak Screen and Speak Selection and adjust voices for VoiceOver. Read More

 

Apple’s all-new Remote app for Apple TV 4 will do Siri, gestures and work in games

By Christian Zibreg on Feb 15, 2016

Apple is working on a brand new Remote app for the fourth-generation Apple TV that will be a full replacement for the functions provided by the included Siri Remote, said Eddy Cue, Senior Vice President of Internet Software and Services, who was joined on The Talk Show podcast with Daring Fireball’s John Gruber by Craig Federighi, Apple’s Senior Vice President of Software Engineering.

The upcoming software will be a new app, not an update to the existing Remote application for the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad which in December 2015 gained keyboard and basic navigation support for the new Apple TV. Read More

 

This tweak displays Siri suggestions in all iOS Spotlight interfaces

By Anthony Bouchard on Feb 5, 2016

Starting in iOS 9, Apple introduced Siri Suggestions in the updated Spotlight interface, which is accessed to the left of the first Home screen page.

Interestingly, despite the new Spotlight interface, Apple kept the original Spotlight interface that you can access by pulling down from the top of the screen, and as you might imagine, it doesn’t have all the new bells and whistles the new Spotlight interface does.

A new jailbreak tweak called NearbyNews is now available in Cydia’s BigBoss repository for $0.99 that will let you bring these features to the original Spotlight interface in iOS 9. Read More

 

Siri making random outbursts? Here’s the fix

By Anthony Bouchard on Jan 28, 2016

It’s happened many times to me before, and I can relate to those that it happens to – you’re trying to be quiet in the middle of class or in the middle of a meeting for work, and all of a sudden you hear a random noise and then Siri starts blabbering.

Siri says “I didn’t quite get that,” or “Sorry, I missed that.”

In this tutorial, we’ll show you how to solve this problem once and for all. Read More

 

How to filter mature language for Siri and Dictation

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 27, 2016

Sometimes when you use the dictation feature on your iPhone, iPod touch or iPad—or just converse with Siri and it misunderstands you—you might be in for a surprise seeing explicit language that you don’t really want others to see, especially if you talk to Siri on your new Apple TV and kids are present.

Fortunately, both iOS and tvOS give you all the controls you need to prevent profanities from showing up when you use speech-to-text or Siri. In this post, you’ll learn how to disable explicit language for Siri and Dictation on your iPhone, iPod touch or iPad and filter out explicit language for Siri on your Apple TV. Read More

 

Tip: use Siri to toggle system settings

By Anthony Bouchard on Jan 26, 2016

Siri is the personal voice assistant pre-installed on your iOS device. Introduced in iOS 5, the voice assistant allows a wide variety of functions, conversions, information queries, and fun comments to be invoked with just your voice.

But did you know Siri can also be used to toggle certain system settings on or off too? In this tutorial, we’ll show you how. Read More

 

Need a coin toss or roll of the dice? Have Siri do it

By Anthony Bouchard on Jan 25, 2016

When it comes right down to it, you may not always have a coin or a die in your pocket, but fortunately, you probably have your iPhone with you, and all recent iPhones can take advantage of the pocket voice assistant Siri.

Siri is a powerful tool, and you may not have known this, but if you forgot your coin and die at home, Siri has you covered for all of your chance-taking needs – she never forgets hers! In this tutorial, we’ll show you how to have Siri flip a coin or roll a die for you. Read More

 

Get more intimate with Siri: teach her how to call you

By Anthony Bouchard on Jan 21, 2016

Siri is a great way to get to the things you want on your iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad without having to tap on anything – it works great for situations where you don’t really have your hands free, but who says using Siri has to be boring?

In this quick post, we’ll show you how you can spice up your conversations with Siri by configuring the voice assistant to call you something different. Read More

 

How to disable suggested places for Siri and Spotlight Search on iPhone and iPad

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 5, 2016

Siri and Spotlight Search are way more useful in iOS 9 with suggestions that update results as you type. In addition to relevant apps and people, proactive suggestions also include nearby places such as restaurants, gas stations, retail stores and other points of interest.

Should you find place suggestions unappealing and potentially impacting your privacy, you can turn them off with just a few taps.

In this post, you will learn how to disable suggested location in Siri and Spotlight Search on your iPhone, iPod touch or iPad with iOS 9.0 or later. Read More

 

How to disable Siri Suggestions in Spotlight Search on iPhone and iPad

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 5, 2016

Siri on iOS 9 enables a more intelligent Spotlight Search with proactive suggestions that make your device more helpful even before you ask.

These Siri-powered suggestions automatically appear in Spotlight upon swiping down on any Home screen, offering suggestions for apps that you launch at specific times of the day, people you tend to contact at specific times and more. You’ll also see suggested news and nearby places such as restaurants, gas stations, retail stores and more.

However, some people find this additional content distracting and useless. If you would like to use Spotlight Search without Siri Suggestions, this quick post will teach you how to disable the feature with just a few taps. Read More

 

How to control the Nest using HomeKit and Siri

By Jeff Benjamin on Dec 18, 2015

The Nest is one of the most popular home automation devices in existence right now, but due to incompatibility with HomeKit, iOS users can’t control their Nest Learning Thermostats using Siri.

Fortunately, a workaround has been found. It’s called Homebridge, and it’s a NodeJS server that runs on your Mac. Homebridge allows iOS devices to interface with incompatible home automation devices like the Nest using HomeKit.

This means that it is now possible to control the Nest with Apple Watch, iPhone, and iPad using Siri. No jailbreak required. Read More

 

New “On the Set” iPhone 6s advert showcases hands-free Siri

By Jeff Benjamin on Dec 3, 2015

Apple has been on a roll as of late when it comes to advertising. Two days or so after posting two new iPhone 6s advertisements, Apple has uploaded yet another to its YouTube channel.

The latest ad, entitled “On the Set”, features Avengers executive producer Jon Favreau. In the spot, Favreau, who’s directing a gymnastics sequence, uses hands-free Siri to pull up example pictures of flying squirrels. Read More

 

Review: SiriMote—control media playback on your Mac with Siri Remote

By Christian Zibreg on Dec 2, 2015

Wouldn’t it be nice if you could use the Siri Remote that came with your new Apple TV to control media applications on your Mac? After all, the remote is Bluetooth-based and Mac itself has robust support for Bluetooth networking.

With SiriMote, a new freeware app, now you can. Created by Vienna, Austria-based Eternal Storms Software’s Matthias Gansrigler, SiriMote lets you control various functions of the Mac using your Apple TV’s Siri Remote. Read More

 

Apple posts new “Hey Siri” and “Ridiculously Powerful” iPhone 6s adverts

By Jeff Benjamin on Dec 1, 2015

Apple has posted two new advertisements on its YouTube channel to highlight features found on the iPhone 6s. The first spot, entitled “Hey Siri”, is a 30-second clip aimed at showcasing the revamped hands-free voice assistant functionality. The second spot, entitled “Ridiculously Powerful”, is a longer 1-minute ad that shows off the speed and power of Apple’s latest flagship phone.

Both new spots can be found over at Apple’s YouTube channel, or you can continue reading to check out the embeds. What are your thoughts on the ads? Do you find them effective? Read More

 

iPad Pro doesn’t support untethered ‘Hey Siri’

By Christian Zibreg on Nov 12, 2015

Although Apple’s iPad Pro Tech Specs webpage states in black and white that the device’s A9X system-on-a-chip includes an embedded ‘M9’ motion coprocessor, just like its A9 counterpart powering the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus, the tablet doesn’t support untethered ‘Hey Siri’ functionality when not connected to power, AppleInsider discovered yesterday. Read More

 

How to preview flight information and track flights on iPhone, iPad and Mac

By Christian Zibreg on Nov 10, 2015

Aside from several headline feature additions, Apple’s iOS 9 and OS X 10.11 El Capitan software updates contain a bunch of little gems, among them data detectors for flight information.

This permits iPhone, iPod touch, iPad and Mac owners to quickly look up flight status information found in notes, messages and emails using a rich interface with flight trajectory, flight status, arrival times and other information.

In this tutorial, you’ll learn how to quickly preview the current status and other information pertaining to an airline and flight number, with or without leaving the context of what you’re currently doing. Read More

 

Siri gains Apple Music support on Apple TV, now can search and play music on latest beta

By Jeff Benjamin on Nov 9, 2015

Siri has apparently gained some new functionality for Apple TV, at least on the tvOS 9.1 beta. You can now direct the remote assistant to play any song or album directly from Apple Music, even if the song or album isn’t in your library. Siri can even search for songs on Apple Music, play Play Beats 1 radio, and more.

This makes Siri a lot more useful on Apple TV, and means that you don’t have to look at the interface to start playing a song that you want to hear. The lack of Siri integration for Apple Music has been a popular pain point for early adopters of 4th-generation Apple TV.

I’m running the 9.1 beta on my Apple TV. For the record, Siri search for music was said to come as an update early next year, so it’s highly likely that this could be a beta-only feature. Other iDB staffers have tried to replicate this functionality on tvOS 9.0 boxes to no avail.

Watch our video that shows Siri integration for Apple Music on the Apple TV…
Read More

 
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