Microphone

Accessory Spotlight: Blue Yeti USB microphone

Welcome to Accessory Spotlight, a weekly column where we highlight an accessory that we find to be incredibly useful, a fantastic value, or both. This week we’ve selected the Blue Yeti USB microphone. There are obviously hundreds of microphones in this space but we like the Yeti because it’s super easy to set up, it sounds great whether you are podcasting, streaming or recording music, and its price tag won’t break the bank.

Hide the waveform and activity bar when using voice memos with discreetVoiceMemos

The Voice Memos app is useful for recording conversations to listen back on at a later date. On the other hand, when trying use it discreetly, the app is far from helpful. It drops obvious hints that it’s being used by displaying an animated waveform on the Lock screen and a bloated red Status Bar everywhere else in iOS.

If you were hoping for a solution to this problem, then you’re in luck because a new free jailbreak tweak called discreetVoiceMemos by CydiaGeek helps to make your Voice Memos usage more sneaky by hiding these highly-visible features from your device when the app is in use.

Has Apple Watch Series 2 gained a second mic to improve Siri reception?

In case you missed this little yet important detail in an avalanche of web reports about the Apple Watch Series 2, Apple’s second-generation wearable packs in a few handful improvements, among which is what appears to be a second microphone opening. As the original Apple Watch had a single tiny microphone hole, it couldn’t suppress background noise.

In turn, the “Hey Siri” function on the original watch behaves somewhat erratically, struggling to recognize the command in noisy environments.

Wait, does that mean that the Apple Watch Series 2 should respond to the “Hey Siri” hot phrase more reliably than before? It’s complicated…

Apple researching a system that would capture biometric data of thieves via iPhone sensors

An Apple patent application published Thursday by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) describes methods of capturing and storing biometric information of thieves via the iPhone’s sensors, including fingerprints, photos, videos and a wealth of other forensic data.

Titled “Biometric capture for unauthorized user identification,” the proposed and somewhat controversial security system would leverage machine learning to proactively capture an unauthorized user’s fingerprint and a picture after unsuccessful Touch ID/passcode attempts or if user-defined criteria have been met.

This tweak makes Siri less impatient so you can take your time speaking

A lot of times while using Siri, you might have to repeat yourself or start over while you’re talking because if you speak too slowly, or pause while you’re talking, you’ll get the “I didn’t quite get that” message.

As frustrating as this can be, especially in louder environments, a new free jailbreak tweak called SiriKeepListening now available in Cydia helps remedy this problem.