Posts in news

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.


Todoist Launches PowerApp for Integrations with Google Calendar, Evernote, and GitHub

Todoist tasks as calendar events in Fantastical and Google Calendar.

Todoist tasks as calendar events in Fantastical and Google Calendar.

Todoist – my favorite task management service that recently also landed on Apple Watch – has never shied away from integrating with other services. The company has long supported automation through IFTTT and Zapier; it can mirror a user's daily tasks to Sunrise; and, it can import files from Google Drive and Dropbox when you need to add attachments to a task. Today, Todoist is launching PowerApp, the next generation of the company's integration system based on a new developer platform they're also debuting today and opening up to third-party apps.

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Apple Watch Launching in Seven More Countries on June 26, Retail Store Sales Begin in Two Weeks

Apple announced today that the Apple Watch will go on sale in another seven countries beginning Friday, June 26. Those countries are Italy, Mexico, Singapore, South Korea, Spain, Switzerland and Taiwan. They join Australia, Canada, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, the UK and the US, where the Apple Watch first began shipping to customers on April 24.

10 Corso Como in Milan, BOONTHESHOP Cheongdam in Seoul and Malmaison by The Hour Glass in Singapore will have a curated selection of Apple Watch available at launch.

To customers in the original launch countries, Jeff Williams, Apple's senior vice president of Operations, says they will begin selling 'some models' of the Apple Watch in their retail stores in two weeks time. Williams also notes that all Apple Watch orders placed in May will be shipped to customers within the next two weeks, "with the sole exception of Apple Watch 42 mm Space Black Stainless Steel with Space Black Link Bracelet".

“The response to Apple Watch has surpassed our expectations in every way, and we are thrilled to bring it to more customers around the world,” said Jeff Williams, Apple’s senior vice president of Operations. “We’re also making great progress with the backlog of Apple Watch orders, and we thank our customers for their patience. All orders placed through May, with the sole exception of Apple Watch 42 mm Space Black Stainless Steel with Space Black Link Bracelet, will ship to customers within two weeks. At that time, we’ll also begin selling some models in our Apple Retail Stores.”

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Apple Starts Decorating Moscone West for WWDC 2015

Apple has started decorating Moscone West in San Francisco for WWDC, kicking off this year on Monday, June 8.

Every year, Apple decorates the convention center in San Francisco with different sets of banners: the ones matching the event's tagline and graphics already available on the WWDC website, and others showing the official (and previously unseen) logos of new versions of iOS and OS X. Apple is expected to introduce iOS 9 and OS X 10.11 this year, bringing improvements to last year's Yosemite redesign and, according to 9to5Mac, a variety of new features for Maps, multitasking, and HomeKit on iOS.

Apple has begun decorating Moscone West with its logo earlier today, and, like every year, we're documenting the process with photos from San Francisco. With preparations now well underway, Apple will continue to decorate Moscone West with new banners in the next few days, possibly showing the official logos for iOS 9 and OS X 10.11.

We will update this post with more photos throughout the week; new updates will be listed in reverse chronological order below.

You can follow @MacStoriesNet on Twitter or our WWDC 2015 news hub for updates.

Our thanks to the Workflow team for providing us with photos from Moscone West in San Francisco.

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The First HomeKit Enabled Devices Begin Shipping

A year after HomeKit was announced at WWDC 2014, the first HomeKit enabled products are today beginning to go on sale from five initial device manufacturers. HomeKit enabled devices, which can range from lights, thermostats and door locks, can be controlled through Siri, and the HomeKit framework enables developers to more easily create apps for home automation.

Insteon and Lutron have devices shipping from today, whilst ecobee, Elgato and iHome will have devices shipping by the end of July. For some details about their initial HomeKit products, jump the break.

Sources: MacRumors, The Verge, Re/code

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Apple Events Channel Now Available on Apple TV to Stream WWDC 2015 Keynote

Apple has today made their 'Apple Events' channel accessible again from any Apple TV (2nd or 3rd generation), ahead of next week's WWDC 2015 keynote. The Apple Events channel confirms that the keynote will be live-streamed on Monday, June 8 at 10am, San Fancisco time.

For developers who want to follow along with the other WWDC sessions, Apple previously announced that 'select' WWDC 2015 sessions will be live streamed on the WWDC website and in the WWDC app. For those technical sessions that are not live streamed, Apple has said that they will be made available to stream and download at the end of each day.

In the meantime, the channel also allows users to stream past Apple events (including WWDC 2014), just in case you've got some free time over the next week. For those without an Apple TV, in the past Apple (for other live streamed events) also hosted a live stream on their website, but that will probably go live closer to next Monday.

You can also follow MacStories' WWDC 2015 Special Event hub for updates, or subscribe through RSS to our dedicated WWDC 2015 Special Event feed.

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

We all struggle with productivity. We are constantly pressured to accomplish more, and to do it quicker. There is no one definitive way to accomplish that, and we have all devised our own little method to make things work. At Igloo, we think your way is the best way, we just want to support you, and make your way better.

Our focus is on becoming that place where you know you can access all you need to work, whether that’s documents, communication, task management, and much more. That means you can access us from all your devices, but it also means our platform is fully customizable. You get involved in the work you do, and things get personal quickly. We think a platform should represent who you are, it should feel like home.

Everything is now mobile – work should be too. We'd rather work on being intuitive while you do your thing. Igloo is an intranet you'll actually like.

Try Igloo for free for as long as you want with 10 of your favorite coworkers.

Our thanks to Igloo for sponsoring MacStories this week.



Apple Updates WWDC App with Apple Watch Version, WWDC 2015 Schedule

With an update released today on the App Store, Apple has refreshed its WWDC app for iOS with the schedule for the upcoming WWDC 2015, improved audio playback, and an Apple Watch version.

The app (now at version 3.0 and sporting a purple icon), includes a preliminary list of scheduled events and sessions such as the opening keynote on Monday, June 8, at 10 AM and the Apple Design Awards, which this year will celebrate the excellence in Apple Watch apps in addition to iOS and Mac software.

On Apple Watch, the WWDC app will let you browse sessions, labs, and favorites, with the ability to view events and access information right from your wrist.

The updated WWDC app is available on the App Store. WWDC 2015 is kicking off on June 8 and runs through June 12; as usual, Apple is expected to unveil the next major versions of iOS and OS X at its annual developers conference.