Thursday Morning News
John Gruber’s review of the iPad Air 2 starts by commenting on the lacklustre update the iPad mini received, at least compared to the iPad Air 2, with its fancy triple-core processor and 2GB of RAM. He says Apple has accepted the fact people are taking photos with their iPads, and the camera improvements in the iPad Air 2 are testament to that. He concludes by saying he won’t be buying an iPad Air 2 — mostly because he prefers the iPad mini form-factor.
Reviews of the new iPad Air 2 mostly say the same thing: super impressive specs, super impressive camera. But the thinness of the devices comes at a price, noted in some reviews by a lower battery life compared to the original iPad Air. It’s because the unit has a thinner battery, and while the power efficiency of the new A8X chip somewhat makes up for the lack of battery capacity, some usage scenarios might see a slight drop.
IFixit’s teardown of the new iPad Air 2 show that the display is indeed a singular unit, also confirming the existence of an NFC chip in the iPad, as well as 2GB RAM. It scores a two out of ten on the repairability scale, thanks to gratuitous glue usage. Benchmarks of the A8X chip peg the chip at 55% faster than the iPhone 6, and even comparable to a two-year old MacBook Air.
Similarly, reviews of the new iMac with 5K Retina display are as you might expect: a ton of pixels makes for a really nice display. Those of us with Retina MacBook Pros already know how good those displays can be, but the Retina iMac brings that intense clarity and sharpness to the desktop.
Apple launched Maps Connect yesterday, a web-based portal for small businesses to create and add details to their listings. AppleInsider notes the service also allows for iBeacon signups, although acceptance into the program isn’t guaranteed.
Macworld has a guide on fixing some of Yosemite’s quirks. Many of them focus around making Yosemite look and feel like previous versions of OS X, much like how guides for iOS 7 wanted to do the same when that was released. But hey, turning off some information in the new Spotlight might be a good thing, if you’re pretty specific about how you use Apple’s search tool.
9to5Mac speculate how the iPhone could take design cues from the Apple Watch, but man, it is too early to contemplate rounded app icons on the regular iPhone homescreen. It looks interesting, I’ll give them that, and rounded icons are possibly easier tap targets, but the touch interaction between a 4.7-inch display and one that’s just 1.65 inches is quite different.
The AgileBits blog had details on why 1Password 5 uses iCloud sync, if you’re on the Mac App Store version of the app. The magic word here is “CloudKit”: “We don’t have to guess when something goes wrong anymore, and we no longer have to tell our users to perform a set of magic steps hoping that some of them would trigger iCloud to work.”
One session from WWDC earlier this year was about hamburger menus in apps, and the positives and negatives of using them. Mike Stern attempted to be as amicable as possible, but the message is pretty clear: wherever possible, don’t use hamburger menus in your iOS apps.
What is the mysterious “Other” that shows up in the coloured bar in iTunes, the one that shows what kind of media is occupying the space on your device? If you stream movies to your iPad, it will likely be the space occupied by the movie — but there’s still no concrete answer about what it is or why it exists. What we do know is you can get rid of it by restoring your device.