iPhone

The new iOS 11 update is great

The new iOS 11 update is great

For the last couple of weeks, I’ve been playing around with the iOS 11 beta release on my iPhone 6S. And I have to say, I am very impressed. This update is loaded with a lot of small improvements that all add up to a greatly improved experience. The new Control Center is customizable and I think that it’s incredibly useful now. I love the fact that you can now place different apps in this new Control Center for super quick access. The Lock screen lets you see more stuff than iOS 10 did, and it just feels right. The Photos app added some cool new features and feels a little more responsive somehow. The App Store redesign threw me for a loop initially, but now that I’ve gotten used to it, the changes they made totally make sense to me. Apple Pay in messages is something I could see myself using quite a bit in the future. The QuickType keyboard let’s you choose a shrunken keyboard that is supposed to make it easier for you to type messages one-handed. I don’t know that I’ll ever need that one myself, as I tend to speak my messages if I find myself in a situation where it’s hard for me to type. But I’m glad it’s there.

The iPad is the device which is going to benefit the most from the iOS 11 update. They’ve packed some awesome new features for use specifically with the iPads. Unfortunately, this update will only work with fairly recent models, and does not work with my current iPad. Probably time for an upgrade 😎

Posted by Ian Van Slyke in Apple news, iOS, iPhone, Productivity, 0 comments
New Apple updates

New Apple updates

This week, Apple released updates for a lot of their products, including the Mac, iPhone & iPad, the Apple watch, and Apple TV. These are mainly bug fixes and security improvements, with no real new features. But any security improvements are pretty important these days, and I would highly recommend that you do the iOS 10.3.3  update in particular, as it resolves an important Wi-Fi security issue. Overall, if you own any of these products, you should update since you’re only going to get stability improvements with no downsides.

Posted by Ian Van Slyke in Apple news, iOS, iPhone, Mac, Mac Security, 0 comments
iPhone 10 year anniversary

iPhone 10 year anniversary

Today marks 10 years since the first iPhone was officially released. And while Apple was already doing very well before the release of the iPhone, in many ways that new device became quite a game changer for the company, and mostly for consumers in general. To be honest, the first iPhone was fairly clunky in many ways, and not all that desirable for most people. But when the 3G iPhone came out in July of 2008 is when things got really interesting. The iPhone was much improved, but it also marked the introduction to the App store, with 500 apps initially available. In my opinion, the introduction of the App Store is a large part of the success of the iPhone, and a big reason why the iPhone and its ecosystem have done so well. It allowed thousands of developers world-wide to start creating all kinds of apps for a public hungry for mobile games, social media, news, and all sorts of new brand new ideas. Along the way, some apps have completely revolutionized some industries, such as Uber, Tinder, and Pokémon Go, just to name a few. Of course, I would argue that it’s also had some fairly negative effects as well, with constant notifications making us more distracted, and some people spending far too much time on their phone. And as such, it will be fascinating to see what the next ten years brings about.

Posted by Ian Van Slyke in Apple news, iOS, iPhone, 0 comments
Apple’s new Public betas

Apple’s new Public betas

This week, Apple is releasing the public betas for some of their upcoming software updates. Yesterday, the iOS 11 public beta was made available for download, and adds some nice features, especially for iPad users. While I don’t really recommend trying the public betas so soon after they come out, the iOS 11 public beta does seem pretty stable already.

But the one I really want to talk about is the upcoming macOS High Sierra public beta. I usually try out these public betas as soon as they come out just to get a feel for the new features before they are released to the public at large. That is part of my job after all.
But I will not be doing that with the macOS High Sierra public beta. This update introduces a brand new file system to the Mac called APFS. This new file system has already been introduced on iOS and has been working great so far. But things might get a little trickier on the Mac, and that’s why I would highly recommend holding off on installing macOS 10.13 on your Mac until all the kinks have been worked out by Apple. So realistically, you should probably wait until the end of July at least.

Posted by Ian Van Slyke in Apple news, iOS, iPhone, Mac, Recommendations, 0 comments
Keeping your messages private

Keeping your messages private

Sending and receiving text messages and pictures on your iPhone and iPad is one of the most common use for smart phone users. But, you don’t necessarily want the people around you to see those messages as they pop up on your phone, or even who the messages are from. To that end, Apple does give you a couple of options regarding how your Message notifications appear on your phone. You can for example, choose to see a message preview when the phone is unlocked, but hide the previews when your phone is locked. That way, no one can read your messages when you’ve left the phone unattended on a desk or in another room. You’ll still get a notification that you’ve received a message, but it just won’t show the content of that message.

In order to choose your favorite notification options, on your iPhone or iPad, go to Settings > Notifications > Messages and look at your Message Options under Show Previews. You have three choices : Always, When Unlocked, and Off. My favorite is When Unlocked, which hides Message Previews when the phone is locked, and I am most likely to be away from the phone.

Posted by Ian Van Slyke in iOS, iPhone, Tips & Tricks, 0 comments
Microsoft Outlook updates

Microsoft Outlook updates

Microsoft has consistently been adding new features to their Microsoft Office 365 suite of apps recently, by listening to users, and implementing the most requested features. This week, Outlook has added new features such as email scheduling, read and delivery receipts, and email templates. Overall, it’s just very encouraging to see Microsoft improving their Mac apps on a regular basis as they have been doing of late, and bodes well for the future of Microsoft apps on macOS and iOS.

Posted by Ian Van Slyke in Apple news, iOS, Mac, Software, 0 comments
Apple’s new ProMotion technology

Apple’s new ProMotion technology

Apple’s newest display technology, which was introduced recently in the new iPad Pro, is going to vastly improve the way you interact with your Apple devices in the future. It manages to really cut down of the latency you feel when doing things such as drawing on your iPad with the Apple pencil, or just scrolling around through web pages, and yet it does not affect battery life. To find out more about ProMotion and why it’s going to be big for Apple, check out this article on iMore.

Posted by Ian Van Slyke in Apple news, iOS, Productivity, 0 comments
Apple’s WWDC 2017 Keynote

Apple’s WWDC 2017 Keynote

Today, Apple made a slew of announcements during their annual keynote event at WWDC 2017. If was full of major announcements including : New iMacs and an upgrade to the entire MacBook line, iOS 11, macOS High Sierra, new iPad Pros, and new watchOS and tvOs updates. And in December of this year, they will also release a very powerful new iMac Pro and a new device called HomePod speaker which is expected to compete with the Amazon Echo and Sonos devices.

There is a whole bunch of under the hood technology improvements which will be incorporated into these new products which should greatly enhance the usability and performance of these Apple devices. Overall, this was a fairly impressive Keynote, packed with tons of new interesting products, which bodes well for the future of Apple moving forward.
If you’re interested in finding out more, the Verge has done a nice little 20 minute recap of the Keynote, which can be found here :
Apple WWDC 2017 Keynote in 19 minutes

Posted by Ian Van Slyke in Apple news, iPhone, Mac, 0 comments
Using Snapchat filters

Using Snapchat filters

If you’ve installed Snapchat on your iPhone, but are past a certain age, it’s very likely that you have found the Snapchat interface slightly confusing and not very intuitive. And maybe you’ve seen people posting pictures and videos with all sorts of cute animations going on, and wondered to yourself, how do they do that ? Well, this article explains how you can start using the Snapchat filters and lenses that Snapchat is so famous for :
How to turn on and use the Snapchat filters

Posted by Ian Van Slyke in iPhone, Learning, Tips & Tricks, 0 comments
Microsoft OneNote App

Microsoft OneNote App

My favorite note taking application for the Mac is Microsoft’s OneNote, which works on the Mac, iPhone and iPad. It’s a wonderful and full-featured note taking tool that has been around since 2003 on Windows, and since 2014 on the Mac. It allows you to blend text, images, videos, PDF’s, graphs, tables and whatever else you can think of to create notebooks blending all these elements together. You can use it for super basic note taking, or very complex presentations using all types of media. You can create to-do lists, use it for project management, write in it using a touch-screen, and all sorts of other uses. If you haven’t yet tried OneNote, do yourself a favor and download it (it’s free) and play around with it. It’s quite easy to use and you’ll quickly discover all it’s potential.

You can find out more about OneNote here

Posted by Ian Van Slyke in iPhone, Mac, Productivity, Recommendations, 0 comments