Thursday Morning News
New renders of the upcoming iPhone design compare one possible design with the iPhone 7 and Samsung Galaxy S8. There’s a couple of things I don’t like about this, however: there’s no single image that has the iPhone 7 and Samsung Galaxy S8 design alongside the proposed iPhone design. Plus, I’m not sure I like the screen cutout for the earpiece, front-facing camera, ambient light sensor, and proximity sensor. It looks very out of place, and I can’t see Apple releasing that kind of compromise in going for maximum possible display area.
Bloomberg is saying Apple is working on a Siri speaker to take on Google’s Home and Amazon’s Echo products. Apple’s Siri speaker would integrate with HomeKit and might even allow streaming of Apple Music, offering serious advantages to members of the Apple ecosystem over those that don’t use Spotify or Google Play. Not to mention, it’s also possible that Apple’s Siri speaker will be available outside of the US faster than the Google Home or Amazon Echo.
Apple has registered a handful of new Macs and iPads ahead of WWDC. The new model numbers point towards new 13 and 15-inch MacBook Pros, a new 12-inch MacBook, and an outside chance of a new MacBook Air. MacRumors also seems to think there’s a new wireless keyboard that will be released, alongside a new model of iPad Pro, possibly even the 10.5-inch one that’s been rumoured for a while now.
Speaking of wireless keyboards, Gruber speculates about the possibility of a trackpad on the iPad’s Smart Keyboard. Besides Apple copying Microsoft’s Surface lineup for this, the idea wouldn’t be for full-time mouse input, but as a faster way to edit text, which is really one of the only reasons for the iPad Smart Keyboard to exist.
9to5Mac wants to be able to choose the default apps on iOS for handling mail, web pages, and so on. While apps can already choose to handle certain links from the web and other apps (Wikipedia and YouTube are good examples of this), being able to send an email using the Gmail app or Outlook might be more useful for some. And what if we never used the clock, calculator, or camera shortcuts from Control Center? Maybe iOS 11 will finally bring these features.
Dr Drang calls out Apple’s short-term memory, where they seem to introduce things and then promptly forget about them. There’s plenty of examples, including iPad features that haven’t been improved upon, products such as the Apple TV that have gone long periods where people start to wonder if they’ve been abandoned, and others. He doesn’t suggest any possible changes, but someone needs to be keeping track.
MacStories tells us about PiPifier, a free single-serving iPad app that lets you picture-in-picture any HTML5 video from within Safari. This comes in handy if you’re doing some casual web browsing and come across an embedded video, for example.
Wacom’s brand-new stylus for the iPhone and iPad acts a little like the Apple Pencil, in that it connects to your devices via Bluetooth. The precise Bamboo Sketch is said to mimic real pen and paper, with two shortcut buttons and interchangeable pen nibs, although app compatibility is limited to a handful of apps.
Zotac has unveiled Thunderbolt 3 enclosures designed to attaching external graphics cards to MacBook Pros. They’re not specifically designed for use with Macs, which makes me thing that you’d be better off with a product that’s already been on the market.
Microsoft’s Planner app for Office 365 subscribers has made it to the iPhone, although the features aren’t completely up to speed with what the web interface offers. Microsoft also says support for push notifications and Intune will be coming in the next few months.