Friday Morning News
Bloomberg’s take on what we’ll see at WWDC this year tells us about the things we’ve been speculating about for weeks now. It’s widely expected we’ll see previews of what Apple will be bringing to their software platforms across iOS, macOS, watchOS, and tvOS, but the content of those updates remains a mystery. Will Apple focus on Siri improvements to allow HomePod to better compete as a smart home assistant? Or will they dial back the new features and focus on bug and performance improvements? We’ll have to tune in next week to find out.
And although everyone mostly expects new hardware to be released, that same Bloomberg report claims major hardware updates to MacBook Pros and iPads will probably have to wait. A redesigned Apple Watch model that retains compatibility with existing bands in on the cards, but even that will have to wait a few months until you’ll be able to buy one.
A new report says Apple has been secretly poaching engineers and research staff from Intel for a new facility located in Oregon, close to Intel’s home base. Speculation has the new location working on the rumoured transition to ARM-based Macs within the next few years, although the jury’s still out on whether we’ll see a total cutover or the slow introduction of Mac/iOS hybrids first.
Apple has backed a new proposed standard for vision-impaired users to use Braille displays across operating systems and different types of hardware. The USB Implementers Forum wants the new standard to prevent the kind of device lock-in that we currently see with specialised accessibility accessories, simplifying the need for custom software and drivers for particular Braille or screen readers.
TechCrunch asks the question: is Apple ready to take on Netflix? The video streaming service has a big head start over Apple, both in terms of video streaming marketshare and original content available in its library. Much like Apple Music vs Spotify, I can’t see people subscribing to both services, and at the moment, Netflix comfortably comes out on top when it comes to the variety of content available.
It just isn’t Telegram’s week, with the latest being the Telegram CEO coming out and saying that Apple has been blocking Telegram app updates worldwide since April. It’s one of the reasons Telegram missed the GDPR deadline, and also explains why Telegram isn’t completely compatible with the just-released iOS 11.4 despite Telegram submitting an update weeks ago — for whatever reason, Apple hasn’t approved that update.
The Mac Observer walks us through checking the LaunchAgents folder for malicious software, but it’s just as good a place to see if you have anything unwanted starting up when you boot your Mac. That said, there’s probably some stuff that you might not recognise, but is harmless or even required for proper operation of some app on your Mac, so do a little digging before blindly emptying out the entire folder.
An update to Pixelmator Pro adds export tools for web-based workflows, as well as support for the Touch Bar for quick access to colour adjustments, colour selections, choosing between effect presets, and that kind of thing. There’s also new automatic one-click adjustments to photos, powered by machine leaning.
MacStories talks us through Agenda, a new app that works more like an organisation tool than just a list of reminders. Organising your tasks into projects is a unique take, and the calendar integration also allows you to schedule items as you see fit. On the other hand, there’s also the updated OmniFocus 3, which has similar organisation capabilities in one of the more classical task management apps out there.
It’s been a pretty slow week for new Apple ads, so I’m making up for a lack of anything new with a bunch of Apple Computer promo videos from the late 80s. If you’re looking for some older stuff to scratch that nostalgic itch, then this may be exactly what you’re looking for.