Wednesday Morning News

Apple has previewed new emoji coming later this year. It’s unclear whether these will be included as part of iOS 11, but new emoji such as the humble sandwich, starstruck, zombie, and vomit will let you describe a whole new variety of situations. Apple’s App Store and iTunes Movies Twitter accounts also got in on the World Emoji Day action, sharing emoji versions of film titles.

TechCrunch writes Apple wants to get an iPad in the hands of every hospital patient. Starting with a handful of hospitals in the US, Apple is currently trialling a pilot which gives patients access to their vitals, care team, and educational tools via an iPad. Early reports from patients seems promising, with patients happy that they’re being kept in the loop and in-the-know with their progress, with the ease of communicating breaking down another barrier between patients and their physicians.

While the legal battle between Qualcomm and Apple continues on in the courts, Qualcomm CEO Steve Mollenkopf thinks an out-of-court settlement is the most likely outcome. Reports on the issue say there’s no new developments in the case, and Mollenkopf says there’s “no reason why” the issue can’t be settled out of court.

Recent rejections of VPN-based ad-blocking apps prompted speculation Apple had changed App Store guidelines without telling anyone, but Apple has since clarified that the rules haven’t changed. Apple confirms that they have never allowed apps which interfere with the performance or capabilities of the device, adding that they also supported ads as a legitimate revenue stream for developers.

An improvement to the App Store now lets developers assign a “Customer Support” role in iTunes Connect, which lets support teams respond to App Store reviews. The new Customer Support role supersedes the previous Manager and Marketing roles, which were automatically migrated to the new Customer Support role on July 13.

A paywalled Wall Street Journal article has a former Apple exec claiming that Apple’s design innovation has stalled following the death of Steve Jobs. Hugh Dubberly says that while Samsung’s S8 smartphone might have a slightly better design than the current iPhone, it’s not because Samsung has suddenly gotten better at design, but more that Apple has changed as a company since Tim Cook took the helm.

Benedict Evans makes some good points on the “content is king” debate, saying that books and music don’t matter much to the tech industry, and pretty soon, TV and movies won’t either. Apple can afford to dabble in TV and original content without having to resort to the big, bet-the-company move on something like acquiring Netflix, and for the moment, “the smartphone is the sun and everything orbits around it”.

Equinux figured out what makes the magic happen when you hold up an iTunes or App Store gift card to the iPhone camera. As it turns out, the magic text-recognising technology is based on a custom font, which is stored on your Mac and can then be used to build your own scannable iTunes promo cards.

Adobe has updated Lightroom for iOS to support the Apple Pencil on the iPad Pro and 3D Touch on iPhones. Both use the “Brush Selection” tool, and there’s also a bunch of other usability improvements.

In other app update news, Panic has released Transmit 5, seven years after the release of Transmit 4. Basically everything is improved, with Transmit 5 supporting more servers, more sync, and more speed. The interface is familiar but newer, and what’s more, it’s on sale for one week at US $35, after which the price goes up to US $45. There’s a short FAQ below the announcement post, and you can even purchase Transmit 5 with Apple Pay, which is kind of cool.

Start the discussion at