Wednesday Morning News

A first look at the iMac Pro from Ars Technica tells us about the machine no one was expecting. We were probably looking forward to Apple’s modular Mac Pro being announced maybe at the end of the year, or even sometime next year, but now that they’ve got their “thin and light” machine out of the way for pro-level users, the actual Mac Pro should be incredible. Apple’s iMac Pro press release confirms that the iMac Pro is in addition to the upcoming modular Mac Pro.

Unfortunately, it seems we’re off to a slightly less-than-ideal start. Apple has said that the RAM in the iMac Pro will not be user-replaceable, despite it sporting a similar (externally, at least) design to the 27-inch iMac, which does have user-replaceable RAM. The Space Grey accessories, including the wireless keyboard with numeric keypad, will also not be available separately.

If I had to talk about the biggest announcement of yesterday’s keynote, it would be iOS 11. MacStories rehashes everything that was shown off about iOS 11, from iPad multitasking features to miscellaneous improvements to apps you use every day. It’s going to be a big release, and while initial reports claim the first developer beta is a little rough around the edges, by the time the public beta shows up at the end of the month it’ll probably be worth trying out.

Tidbits about iOS 11 from MacRumors are my favourite kind of posts to wake up to in the morning, mostly because there’s so much good stuff that didn’t get on-stage time but will still make a major difference in day-to-day life. The Control Centre is now completely customisable with as many or as few icons as you want, and iOS 11 can even help you automatically uninstall apps that haven’t been used in a while, preserving their data in case you decide you want to re-download them again in the future.

People have been asking for more gesture controls for AirPods ever since they launched, and it looks like iOS 11 will at least bring next/previous track controls to Apple’s wireless earbuds. New settings for AirPods in iOS 11 also allow for different actions depending on which AirPod is double-tapped, so you can setup one ear for next track, and one ear for Siri.

Six Colors has questions about Apple’s new iPad lineup, including what happened to the 9.7-inch iPad Pro. It’s dead, for the record, replaced by the 10.5-inch iPad Pro, and probably for good reason, given that having two 9.7-inch iPads — one Pro, one not — would have been more than a little confusing for consumers.

Six Colors also went ears-on with the preview version of Apple’s HomePod, where it was compared against the Sonos Play:3. Jason Snell reports HomePod sound quality was quite good, with the caveat that there was potentially too much audio processing was being applied to tracks at times, despite powerful bass and clear treble.

Apple are now selling the Pride Edition Woven Nylon Apple Watch strap for both 38 and 42-mm Apple Watch. It’s priced the same as the other woven nylon bands, and now all we need is for Apple to start selling the bands using country flag designs they sold at the Olympics.

In case you missed it, Monument Valley 2 is now available on the App Store. If you enjoyed the original, there’s a good chance you’ll like the sequel, too. Monument Valley 2 is available for $7.99 on the Australian App Store.

The first new ads for Apple’s new iPads have appeared. They’re done in the same style of people tweeting complaints about their existing computers, then showing how the iPad is a great solution. I’m still on the fence about buying an iPad for real productivity, but I still really, really want an iPad Pro.

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