Wednesday Morning News
Apple’s latest accessory is the Smart Battery Case for the iPhone 6s. It’s the first battery case Apple has released, and while that carries a certain connotation that Apple know and acknowledge battery life issues, it’s possible that Apple just wanted a slice of the third-party battery case market. Apple’s Smart Battery Case retails for $165, on both the Apple Online Store and (presumably) in-person at any Apple Retail location.
A review of the Smart Battery Case from Mashable says it’s about as well-integrated with iOS as you might expect from a first-party product, but doesn’t have some of the niceties offered by alternatives, such as the ability to control when your iPhone is charging from the battery case and when it isn’t. And while Apple’s Smart Battery Case features a passive antenna to prevent mobile signal loss, that’s not something I’ve had an issue with on any of the battery cases I’ve used.
Apple has also updated the Lightning to SD Card Camera Reader accessory, which now works at USB 3 speeds (albeit only on the iPad Pro). You also get official iPhone compatibility with Apple’s previous SD card readers — while previous versions were technically compatible with the iPhone, this time around Apple is making it all official-like.
A new rumour claims Apple may reveal updated Apple Watch hardware alongside a smaller-screened iPhone. 9to5Mac writes it’s entirely possible we’ll see both devices at an event said to happen in March.
Update Tuesday brought us some goodies for what may well be the last time for the year. Six Colors went hands-on with the tvOS 9.1 update, saying the update makes the new Apple TV work with Apple’s positively ancient Remote app on the iPhone. The included Siri Remote can now search music stored on your local network, too.
There’s a new version of iOS out, and iOS 9.2 mostly has Apple Music and accessibility improvements. IMore has the full changelog, which includes a number of bug fixes and improvements to popular apps such as iBooks, Mail, Safari, and more.
Similarly, the watchOS 2.1 update includes new language support and bug fixes. And that’s all she wrote!
Last but not least, Apple has updated OS X El Capitan to 10.11.2, with the latest update bringing more Wi-Fi stability, and improving the reliability of Handoff and AirDrop, among other fixes and improvements.
Maybe this OS X update will be the one that fixes numerous issues to do with software quality. As described by Brent Simmons, it’s the low-hanging fruit that Apple should be working on, in amongst their push for thinner, faster, devices.
Apple CEO has made an appearance in a video for the Cerebral Palsy Foundation for their latest campaign, which resolves around the best way to start a conversation with someone who has a disability. Siri also makes an appearance, and there must be some way that Apple engineers can customise Siri responses to certain input, because I asked Siri the same thing and got the same response.