Tuesday Morning News
Apple has released macOS High Sierra into the wild, and provided you have a compatible Mac, you can now download it from the Mac App Store. Like every other macOS release since Mavericks back in 2013, High Sierra is free, and contains mostly under-the hood improvements as detailed by Six Colors. Even though the improvements are mostly under the hood, there’s still major changes to Photos, Safari, and minor visible changes to other macOS cornerstones such as Spotlight, Sierra, and even how the Touch Bar works, if you have one of those.
For those looking for a little more detail about how macOS High Sierra stacks up as an operating system for your Mac and compared to previous releases, Ars Technica has the in-depth review you’ve been looking for. Feel free to jump to a particular section if you want to know more about how all Macs with flash storage will be converted to APFS upon upgrading, or how Messages still doesn’t have full-screen effects like it does on iOS.
The good news is, macOS High Sierra includes support for H.265 video recorded by iOS devices running iOS 11, making them compatible with 4K HEVC video shot by those devices. The bad news is, Final Cut Pro X hasn’t yet been updated by Apple, which means you’ll either need to convert your video to the Apple ProRes format, or forego editing your footage in Final Cut Pro X.
Any release that brings along a new filesystem is bound to have its own set of quirks, and seeing as APFS is a brand new filesystem, it’s no exception. While you’ll be able to back up your AFPS drive using Time Machine, Time Machine currently relies on hard links which aren’t supported by AFPS, meaning that you won’t be able to back up to an APFS-formatted external hard drive. If you try to do so, Time Machine will convert it back to HFS+. Apple’s support article on APFS information for system administrators has more.
Bjango has released iStat Menus 6, which not only brings compatibility with macOS High Sierra but also a whole host of improvements. Weather is now included as a possible menu bar item, notifications for pretty much anything can be customised to your heart’s content, hotkeys, and a bunch of other great stuff. From what Marc has said on Twitter the weather data isn’t from the BOM, but that didn’t prevent me from upgrading sight-unseen.
After taking apart the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus, iFixit turned their opening tools onto the Apple Watch Series 3 with LTE. The battery is bigger this time around, whilst also managing to include the necessary LTE radios to make the standalone phone feature work. You won’t be repairing anything on the Apple Watch logic board anytime soon, but other than that the device scores a 6 out of 10 on their repairability scale.
Marco Arment wrote about what we need from Apple to make standalone Apple Watch podcast apps a reality, and the current deal breakers mean this won’t be possible until we see some changes from Apple’s side. There are minor issues that could be fixed, but without progress syncing, podcast progress will be lost every time you choose to play something on your Apple Watch.
Apple is switching Siri and Spotlight web searches from Bing to Google, and there’s no word on why or how much Google is (presumably) paying for the privilege. Either way, this should be wrapped up by the end of the day, if you’re not already seeing it on your device.
The latest report from analyst Ming-Chi Kuo says the TrueDepth sensor is the current bottleneck for iPhone X production. While pre-orders of the iPhone X could reach the 50 million mark, Kuo believes the TrueDepth front-facing camera system used for Face ID will be difficult to mass-produce.