It is Sunday today, which means it is time for me to tell you about the most interesting posts of the past seven days. Let’s not waste time and take a look at them right now.
As you know, Apple on Monday announced the long-awaited Apple Watch, the 12-inch Retina MacBook and the updated MacBook Air and MacBook Pro models. MacBook Airs and MacBook Pros are currently available for purchase, however, the smartwatch and the new ultra thin laptop will hit the store shelves only on April 24th. If you want to buy the new laptop or Apple’s first-ever wearable device a bit earlier, starting from April 10th you will get an opportunity to pre-order any device.
According to the latest report from Reuters, Apple’s rival, Microsoft, is currently planning to make the updated version of its personal assistant called Cortana available not only on Windows Phone platform, but also on iOS and Android. Unlike the Siri and Google Now, the virtual assistant developed by the guys from Redmond won’t just respond to user’s requests. It will reportedly predict the help user may need.
Last month, a rumor appeared on the Internet, which suggested that Apple decided to start working on its own self-driving electric car codenamed “Titan”. Today, reliable insiders claim that they have found something like a secret research lab, where the work on the project is carried out. This secret research and development center is situated not far from Apple’s main headquarters, in Sunnyvale, California.
Last Monday, at the “Spring Forward” media event the guys from Cupertino announced the Apple Watch and the 12-inch MacBook. What is interesting about the new laptop is that it can boast of a brand new multifunctional USB connector called USB C. According to what the analyst John Gruber revealed in his latest podcast, Apple may actually be the inventor of the new standard, which is USB Type C.
As you probably know, Apple’s iOS 8.2 can boast of one special app. This is the Apple Watch companion, which can be used to fine tune the wearable device and control it from the iPhone. So far, we haven’t seen the design and features of this useful app, however, thanks to iOS developer Hamza Sood we can now take a look at how the smartwatch companion looks like after one connects the Apple Watch to it.
To be honest, the app looks quite similar to the Settings tab found in iOS. There are numerous sections responsible for app layout, notifications, sounds and many other things. You can take a look at the aforementioned app screenshots below.
Just as we expected, Apple has recently launched iOS 8.3 public beta testing program. This means that the pre-release version of iOS 8.3 is now available for all those users, who have registered as members of the public testing program. While the guys from Cupertino have released several public OS X betas in the past, they have never offered public access to the pre-release iOS builds.
Apart from seeding the third iOS 8.3 beta to developers, the guys from Cupertino released the third beta of OS X Yosemite 10.10.3 on Thursday. The release came just a week after the release of the first public OS X 10.10.3 beta and about a month after the release of the very first beta of this version of Apple’s operating system for desktops.
The guys from Cupertino on Thursday seeded the third iOS 8.3 beta to developers for testing. The release came about two weeks after the release of the second iOS 8.3 beta, which could boast of new emoji picker, better CarPlay connectivity, the support of Google’s two step verification, new Siri languages and a number of other performance and stability improvements. New beta became available for Apple’s developers just several days after the public release of iOS 8.2, which could bo the official release of iOS 8.2 that featured the support of the Apple Watch.
As you already know, Apple on Monday released slightly refreshed 11-inch and 13-inch MacBook Air models. While both laptops got the same processor and graphics, the larger-screened model was also equipped with a new flash storage that is said to be "up to two times faster" than the flash storage inside of the 11-inch device. iFixit team decided to find out, whether the guys from Cupertino told us the truth about the speed of the SSD. As it turned out, they did.
According to what people familiar with the matter say, some of the iPhones released in 2016 and sold in the developing countries of Asia and Latin America will be equipped with new LTE chips manufactured by Intel, not Qualcomm. Apple’s engineers have reportedly been working together with Intel’s specialists to create the LTE chip, which will be officially released in the second half of this year.
According to the latest report from TechCrunch, the battery of the Apple Watch will be replaceable, which means user will get an opportunity to change it after it loses its capacity. By the way, the battery has a lifecycle of about three years. And this is not a rumor; such technical spec has been officially confirmed by the guys from Cupertino. However, Apple failed to mention whether any other components, for example, RAM or CPU, will be replaceable and as a result - upgradable. We’ll find that out once the smartwatch hits the store shelves in April, I guess.
Following the official announcement of the Apple Watch, 12-inch Retina MacBook, the updated 13-inch MacBook Pro as well as the 11-inch and 13-inch MacBook Air models, several new rumors that deal with the next-generation iPhone appeared online. According to these rumors, the smartphone will be available in two sizes, just like the current iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. The screen resolution will remain nearly the same. Apart from that, the smartphone may get the support of the Force Touch technology and a new pink body, The Wall Street Journal reporters write.
According to what people familiar with the matter write, the recently-released Apple Watch can indeed boast of 8GB of internal storage. However, only 2GB will be available to store music and 75MB - to store photos on the wearable device. The multimedia content can be synced using the companion app for the iPhone. After user sends the songs and images he wants to his Apple Watch, he will get an opportunity to access them even when the connection with the smartphone is lost.
Aside from announcing the Apple Watch and the 12-inch MacBook, the guys from Cupertino have slightly improved the existing 11-inch and 13-inch MacBook Air models and the 13-inch MacBook Pro. The good news is that these devices are available for purchase right now, so if you live in the USA and plan to buy one of the updated MacBook models, you can do this right now.