It’s Saturday and that can only mean one thing — it’s time for The TiP Weekly!
Tech moves fast and it can be hard to keep up with all of the developments in the mobile industry — especially when Apple is concerned! So, every Saturday, we bring you all of the important stories from the week in Apple tech in an easy to digest format. Think of it as a weekly newsletter of all the stuff you care about.
We round up the posts you might have missed here at Today’s iPhone and from sources around the web. We bring you the biggest stories as well as the insightful analysis.
And we also gather together our app and product reviews for you to peruse. Plus, to round out the post, we’ll give you our Picks of the Week — from apps, to music, movies and podcasts!
Sound good? We thought so. Let’s dive into issue #6 of The TiP Weekly…
All about that jailbreak
Cyber Monday came and went this week and our attention shifted to the news that iOS 8.1.1 had been jailbroken. The TaiG jailbreak tool for iOS 8.1.1 was released in Chinese and for Windows-only initially, for which we created a tutorial for the keen jailbreakers.
Subsequently, the tutorial was translated to English making it easier to follow although we’re still waiting for a Mac-friendly version even after version 1.1 of the tool was released.
Have you taken the plunge and jailbroken yet?
Links from around the web:
- Jailbreak iOS 8.1.1 With Taig On iPhone 6, 6 Plus, 5s, iPad, More — Ben Reid at Redmond Pie
- TaiG jailbreak updated to version 1.1, upgradable via Cydia — Jeff Benjamin at iDownloadBlog
We are delighted to have teamed up with iCarbons, makers of wonderful skins for tech and gadgets, to give away three iPhone skins to lucky readers.
It’s so easy to enter, so check all the details HERE and be sure to take a look at iCarbons’ site to see all of the company’s offerings.
Links from around the web:
- iCarbons Global Giveaway: 3 iPhone skins up for grabs! — Adam Oram at Today’s iPhone
- iCarbons Skin for iPad Air, the perfect skin? [Review] — Cam Bunton at Today’s iPhone
Best Apps of 2014!
It’s almost the end of 2014 so we have decided to bring together the best apps of the year! In a series of posts, we’ll outline the best apps in a number of categories on the App Store.
To kick things off, we identified the best iOS games! We’ll be producing new posts in the “Best Apps of 2014″ series from now until the end of the year and you can follow along with the series HERE.
As always, let us know your favorite apps!
Life imitating art
We featured the above super cool Apple Watch app concept from Impekable this week. It shows a mockup Starbucks app running on the Watch enabling users to order and pay for their favorite caffeinated beverage in the app and paying via Apple Pay.
A couple of obvious problems in reality aside— no native apps on Apple Watch yet and Starbucks’ reluctance to implement Apple Pay — we thought it looked incredible and would make life so much easier.
Weirdly, the following day, Starbucks announced a similar system via its iOS app with its Mobile Order & Pay system allowing in-app ordering and payment — but shunning Apple Pay for its own Starbucks card method. Still, it’s an awesome way to skip the line.
Links from around the web:
- UBS: 10% of people “very likely” to buy smartwatch in 2015, predicts 24M Apple Watch sales — Adam Oram at Today’s iPhone
- All in the wrist: Devs embrace future of Apple Watch apps — Alex Heath at Cult of Mac
- Concept app shows how Apple Watch would let you skip Starbucks line — Buster Hein at Cult of Mac
- Starbucks Launches Mobile Order & Pay in Portland; National Introduction in 2015 — Starbucks
- Starbucks Schools Silicon Valley (Again) With Launch of iPhone Ordering — Marcus Wohlsen at WIRED
- Starbucks rolls out Mobile Order & Pay in Portland, still no Windows Phone app — Matthew Miller at ZDNet
- Identity Wars: Why Apple Pay Is About More Than Payments — Patrick Salyer at TechCrunch
- Sample size one — Rob Wensing at Apple Spotlight
Eddy Cue on iBooks price-fixing: “We have to fight for the truth”
Apple’s SVP of Internet Software and service spoke up this week about the iBooks price-fixing case won against the company by the Justice Department. In its appeal on December 15, Apple hopes to overturn the 2013 decision.
Under a conditional settlement worked out in June of this year, Apple will pay $450 million in damages and attorney fees if it loses the appeal. If it wins, it pays nothing. Cue stated that him and CEO Tim Cook are determined to “fight for the truth.”
Links from around the web:
- Second Bite: Can Apple clear its name in the ebooks drama? — Roger Parloff at Fortune
- Apple’s Eddy Cue on ebooks price-fixing war: ‘I’d do it again’ — Hannah Jane Parkinson at The Guardian
Tidbits from around the web
From across the PhoneDog Media Network:
- Robots might not build your next iPhone after all — Adam Oram at Today’s iPhone
- iPhone 6 Plus captures 41% of phablet sales in US — Adam Oram at Today’s iPhone
- Beats’ Jimmy Iovine sheds new light on Apple buyout in interview — Adam Oram at Today’s iPhone
- iPad Pro mockup video compares physical size to other Apple devices — Adam Oram at Today’s iPhone
- Battery Saving Tips: iOS — Beau Hamilton at PhoneDog
- Just how important is it to have iMessage? — Anna Scantlin at PhoneDog
- Bluetooth 4.2 offers improvements to privacy, speed and power consumption — Alex Wagner at PhoneDog
- Is it time for Apple to start making more affordable products? — Anns Scantlin at PhoneDog
- Slingshot app from Facebook gets big update to version 2.0 — Alex Wagner at PhoneDog
Other interesting articles, opinions and posts that you might have missed:
- Thoughts on Black Friday, Cyber Monday Sales — John Saddington at Desk Blog
- Professional App Pricing — Federico Viticci at MacStories
- Why I Left My iPhone 6 For an iPhone 5S — Chris Mills at Gizmodo
- Apple broke its own rule by pushing a (RED) promo message. So what? — Christian Zibreg at iDownloadBlog
- Apple Maps to expand community crowdsourcing features, Siri + Passbook integration — Jordan Kahn at 9to5Mac
- Unexpected: Why Shopping With Apple Pay Feels so Good — John Martellaro at The Mac Observer
- Wish List: Apple Pay your friends — Dan Moren at Six Colors
- Sketchy Rumor Claims Apple Planning New 4-Inch iPhone for 2015 — Kelly
- Hodgkins at MacRumorsApple Files their Tenth Smart Pen Patent of the Year — Jack Purcher at Patently Apple
- Apple deleted users’ non-iTunes music and didn’t tell them about it — Timothy J. Sepal at Engadget
- Steve Jobs’s 2011 testimony in Apple DRM lawsuit points finger at music labels — Josh Lowensohn at The Verge
- For context on iPod antitrust lawsuit, see Steve Jobs’ open letter ‘Thoughts on Music’ — Rob Wensing at Apple Spotlight
- Best — Ben Thompson at Stratechery
- Apple Watch’s Secret Weapon — Neil Cybart at Above Avalon
- Apple CEO Tim Cook to be namesake of Alabama anti-discrimination bill — Mikey Campbell at AppleInsider
- Pennsylvania school district using $291K donation from Tim Cook to buy iPads for kids — John-Michael Bond at TUAW
In a new section for The TiP Weekly, we highlight some of the longer-form opinion posts we published this week. Click through to see the full articles and put forward your thoughts in the comments.
How Apple Watch may improve future iPhones
Josh Hrach dived into the new technologies in Apple Watch and postulated areas in which future iPhones could be improved by adopting the same features:
Now, Apple is closing in on the public release of Apple Watch. While consumers can’t get their hands on it yet, Apple has released more information to developers so they can prepare apps and extensions for the new device. From the information that we’ve seen, the Apple Watch is going to be pretty advanced for a computing device of its size. There are also some technologies that we could possibly see coming to the iPhone or iPad in the future.
Josh cites wireless charging, the Taptic Engine, smaller chipsets and much more as candidates for inclusion in future iOS devices.
Apple needs to nail down its app review process or face losing developers
There was controversy this week surrounding Drafts 4‘s Notification Center widget. In short, Apple asked developer Greg Pierce to remove it despite the app being accepted into the App Store without a hitch previously.
A discussion emerged about Apple’s App Store Review process and the disconnect between policy makers and policy enforcers. Adam Oram threw his opinion into the hat and drew on other examples of review inconsistency:
Not only is it stressful, it’s expensive — developers like Pierce, Thomson and Greg Gardner at Cromulent Labs, invested a lot of time, effort and money into their apps, creating widgets for iOS 8 and remaining committed to the iOS platform. These early adopters of new APIs are, effectively, being punished for creating something new, and keeping up with OS trends, when Apple eventually decides it doesn’t like the end product. This has a financial implication for the devs and more implications for the overall quality of apps on the App Store over time.
Developers will only be burned by this so many times before they stop trying. […]
If Apple wants its ecosystem — perhaps its most valuable asset — to shine, it needs to nail down its policies from top to bottom. Every person in the chain should know what is and is not allowed and this information should be communicated clearly to developers.
If Apple wants to promote its burgeoning App Store, it has to look after the people responsible for its success.
AppHeads Jailbreak Tweak
With most of the news this week surrounding jailbreaking, we took a look at a popular jailbreak tweak from Janosch Hübner.
AppHeads is a tweak that reinvents the way you multitask on your iOS device and is reminiscent of the short-lived Chat Heads within the Facebook iOS app. For speeding up multitasking, AppHeads is great and there are no noticeable performance or battery issues when using it.
Picks of the Week
Themeboard launched on to the App Store this week and is a unique iOS 8 custom keyboard app.
What’s different about Themeboard is that it’s not just one special keyboard — it features a whole store of them! In the app, the user can choose to install one of a number of keyboards from designers all over the world, as well as interact with designers via email or Twitter.
If you’re after some variety in the keyboard department, Themeboard is the easiest way to achieve it.
Download Themeboard for iPhone and iPad on the App Store for free.
Read more about Themeboard:
- Themeboard — Taphive
- Themeboard: iOS8 custome keyboard store — Adam Oram at Today’s iPhone
- Themeboard is a themeable iOS keyboard with kaomoji support so you can ¯_(ツ)_/¯ on the go — Owen Williams at The Next Web
Angry Birds Seasons
Angry Birds Seasons app iconDecember is upon us Angry Birds Seasons has been updated with all new levels for the holidays.
Countdown to Christmas with 25 new wintry levels and new playable characters and indulge in the lovely Finnish-ness of the new version with Finnish landscapes, facts and music.
If you’ve grown a little tired of the Angry Birds franchise, these new winter-themed levels will get you right back in the spirit.
Download Angry Birds Seasons for iPhone for $0.99 and Angry Birds Seasons HD for iPad for $2.99 in the App Store.
Read more about Angry Birds Seasons:
- Angry Birds Seasons
- Angry Birds Seasons Invades Finland — Jessica Fisher at 148Apps
Resolve — Apple Watch: So Many Questions
Resolve is a regular podcast hosted by Abdel Ibrahim of The Tech Block and featuring a variety of guests. A podcast about brand loyalty and technology, Abdel and his guests take a deep dive into a singular product — currently Apple Watch — and try to explain different elements of the product’s success or failure.
In this episode, Ibrahim is joined by Neil Cybart of Above Avalon who shares his insights on the Apple Watch and discusses how he arrived that the possibility that Apple could sell 60M units within the first 24 months.
Download Resolve in iTunes, subscribe via RSS or listen online.
Read more about Resolve:
- Apple Watch: So Many Questions
We’re still testing new things with The TiP Weekly and we always want to get your thoughts! While the Weekly might differ in length some weeks, be more focused on news rather than reviews (all depending on the content of that week), we want to know what you’d like to see!
What would you like to see more of? What would you like to see less of? Get in touch below in the comments.