Posts in news

Igloo: An Intranet You’ll Actually Like [Sponsor]

Why invest in the latest, sleekest devices if you are going to use them to stare at an intranet website that looks like it was built in the 90’s?

Not only can Igloo be customized to look exactly like your brand, but with its responsive design, it’s automatically optimized for almost any device you’re using, including the latest iPhone 6 or 6 Plus. And just like your favourite Apple devices, Igloo helps you do your best work.

Share files, coordinate calendars, provide status updates and manage projects. Igloo’s not just for your traditional intranet stuff like HR policies and expense forms. It also lets you work better together with your teams. And it keeps getting better.

Our latest upgrade, Viking, gives you more control over how you interact with documents, gather feedback and make changes. We’ve even added the ability to track who has read critical information (like read receipts in your email, but less annoying) to keep everyone on the same page.

Not convinced yet? We understand love doesn’t happen overnight. If you sign up now, we will let you try our platform for free for as long as you want.

Our thanks to Igloo for sponsoring MacStories this week.


Automatic: Your Smart Driving Assistant on Your Smartphone [Sponsor]

There’s a mountain of data inside your car waiting to be unleashed, and all you have to do is plug in a quick little connector and download a mobile application.

Automatic is a smart driving assistant that plugs into your car's data port and lets you connect your smartphone (either iPhone or Android) with your car. By  talking to your car’s onboard computer and using your smartphone’s GPS and data plan to upgrade your car's capabilities, Automatic will allow you to easily diagnose your engine light, never forget where you parked your car, and save hundreds of dollars on gas.

Automatic learns your driving habits and gives you suggestions through subtle audio cues to drive smarter and stop wasting gas. Thanks to a map view available on your phone, Automatic can display a trip timeline after every driving session, showing you how you're doing with a Drive Score; the app can even track local gas prices and tell you how much you're spending.

In case of engine problems, Automatic can decipher what the "check engine" light means and show you a description of the issue with a possible solution. And thanks to a feature called Crash Alert, Automatic can detect many types of serious crashes and automatically alert local authorities as well as your loved ones when you can't.

Automatic is currently available in the US for iPhone and Android devices, with a 45-day return policy and free shipping in 2 business days.

MacStories readers can go to automatic.com/macstories to get $20 off and buy Automatic at just $79.99. For more information, check out Automatic's website.

Our thanks to Automatic for sponsoring MacStories this week.


Igloo: An Intranet You’ll Actually Like [Sponsor]

Why invest in the latest, sleekest devices if you are going to use them to stare at an intranet website that looks like it was built in the 90’s?

Not only can Igloo be customized to look exactly like your brand, but with its responsive design, it’s automatically optimized for almost any device you’re using, including the latest iPhone 6 or 6 Plus. And just like your favourite Apple devices, Igloo helps you do your best work.

Share files, coordinate calendars, provide status updates and manage projects. Igloo’s not just for your traditional intranet stuff like HR policies and expense forms. It also lets you work better together with your teams. And it keeps getting better.

Our latest upgrade, Viking, gives you more control over how you interact with documents, gather feedback and make changes. We’ve even added the ability to track who has read critical information (like read receipts in your email, but less annoying) to keep everyone on the same page.

Not convinced yet? We understand love doesn’t happen overnight. If you sign up now, we will let you try our platform for free for as long as you want.

Our thanks to Igloo for sponsoring MacStories this week.


Interesting Bits and Pieces from Today’s Apple Announcements

Earlier today Apple held its ‘Spring Forward’ keynote event to unveil their new their new MacBook, announce more Apple Watch details, reveal they are the exclusive launch partner with HBO Now, and unveil ResearchKit to help medical researchers.

We’ve covered the headline details of all those announcements, but as always there are little things that we didn’t capture, or tidbits that others have uncovered since the event. That’s what this article is dedicated to, little interesting things that you may not have noticed yourself.

Read more


Apple Releases iOS 8.2

On the heels of today’s keynote, Apple has released iOS 8.2 to the public. The update includes support for the Apple Watch, improvements to the Health app, increased stability, and bug fixes.

Apple Watch support includes a new Apple Watch app (for us all to stare at longingly for the next few weeks), which is available on iPhone 5 and later.

Improvements to the Health app include the ability to select units of measure for certain statistics, the ability to add and visualize workout sessions from 3rd party apps, and new privacy settings which let you turn off tracking of steps, distance, and flights climbed.

There are also lots of improvements to stability and even more bug fixes for various small issues across the system.

In my personal usage, iOS 8.2 has been far more solid than previous iterations, and feels like the first release in which iOS 8 has really stabilized.

The iOS 8.2 update is available now in Software Update.



Apple’s ResearchKit: Our Complete Overview

One of the unexpected announcements from Apple’s Spring Forward keynote this morning was ResearchKit. ResearchKit is a new initiative by Apple which will enable medical researchers to tap into the vast amount of iPhones in use around the world in order to gather new types of data on an unprecedented scale.

During the keynote, Jeff Williams, Apple’s senior vice president of Operations, took the stage to talk about the problems of medical research. Last year Apple announced a similar initiative, HealthKit, which was more focused on personal health. According to Williams, while talking to medical experts regarding HealthKit, the conversations often led to research and the problems that the field faced. Some of the biggest challenges to medical research, as Williams stated them, are limited participation (small sample sizes), subjective data, infrequent data, and one-way communication. He went on to say that there are hundreds of millions of iPhone users in the world, and many of them would gladly participate in these studies if it were only simpler and easier to do so.

Read more


Apple Refreshes MacBook Air and MacBook Pro Lines

Alongside today’s new line of MacBooks, Apple also announced updates to its MacBook Air and MacBook Pro lines.

The 13-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display has received Apple’s new Force Touch trackpad, as well as being updated to the latest fifth-generation Intel Core processors and Intel Iris Graphics 6100. Its flash storage has been updated to be two times faster, and its battery life has been increased as well (now advertised as 10 hours of battery life for web browsing and 12 hours for iTunes movie playback). Strangely, the 15-inch retina MacBook Pro has been left out of these updates.

The 11- and 13-inch MacBook Airs have both been updated to fifth generation Intel Core processors, Intel HD Graphics 6000, and Thunderbolt 2 connectors. The 13-inch MacBook Air received the bump to two times faster flash, but the 11-inch model did not.

The new 13-inch retina MacBook Pro and 11- and 13-inch MacBook Airs are all available for purchase today (MacBook Airs can be purchased online here, and MacBook Pros here). You can see Apple’s full press release here.


Apple’s All-New MacBook: Our Complete Overview

At this morning’s Spring Forward keynote event, Apple unveiled a brand new line of 12-inch retina MacBooks. Apple is calling this a “reinvention” of the notebook computer, a claim that is evident in every aspect of the new Mac’s composition.

Size and Display

The all-new notebooks are a mere 13.1 mm thin, and weigh in at just 2 pounds. Their 12-inch retina display has a resolution of 2304 x 1440 pixels, and at 0.88 mm thin, it’s the thinnest display ever included on a Mac. It also has a 16:10 aspect ratio and a 178 degree viewing angle. According to Apple, they have increased the size the aperture on every pixel on the display, boosting the new Mac’s energy efficiency by 30% while still maintaining the same level of brightness.

Read more


Apple Watch at the ‘Spring Forward’ Keynote: Our Complete Overview

At Apple’s ‘Spring Forward’ keynote held earlier today at the Yerba Buena Center in San Francisco, Apple provided more details about the Apple Watch, which will open for pre-orders on April 10 and launching on April 24. Today’s keynote was mostly a recap of last September’s announcement of the Apple Watch, with a handful of new details sprinkled throughout, read on to get all the key details. Read on to get an overview of the important announcements from today, but if you're looking for more information, look no further than the Apple Watch website or the keynote video.

“Apple Watch begins a new chapter in the way we relate to technology and we think our customers are going to love it,” said Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO. “We can’t wait for people to start wearing Apple Watch to easily access information that matters, to interact with the world, and to live a better day by being more aware of their daily activity than ever before.”

Read more