Jake Underwood

53 posts on MacStories since December 2015

Jake is a contributor at MacStories, a public relations major at Ball State University, and an iOS app fanatic. His life is full of listening to podcasts and playing Nintendo games, as well as watching sporting events and spending too much money on Apple products.

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Switch Your AirPods Connection Easily with Tooth Fairy

It’s become no secret that I, along with countless others, am absolutely in love with my AirPods. I’ve only had them for a couple of weeks, but I’ve already built a habit of keeping them in my ears for hours on end, switching between my iPhone and Mac to catch up on podcasts, listen to music, and watch YouTube videos.

And while one of the best parts of AirPods is that they are already set up on all your iCloud devices after the first pairing, the need to dive into the Bluetooth menus to connect them on the Mac can waste a frustrating few seconds. For a much quicker and more convenient switching process, I’ve been using Tooth Fairy on the Mac.

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HealthView Review: Your Customized Health App

When it comes to health information on my iPhone and Apple Watch, I’m about as mildly interested as it comes – while I enjoy glancing at the metrics and measurements displayed on the Apple Watch, I usually stay away from the iPhone’s Health app.

There are two primary reasons for this: the Health app is pretty cluttered; and Health often gives me information that I really don’t care about. I’d like a “less is more” approach.

HealthView offers exactly that – rather than providing you information scattered throughout the app, you choose what you want to see, how you want to see it, and when it appears. Although it’s not as robust as Apple’s Health, HealthView may just be a better fit for your needs.

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Time Review: Powered by AI and You

The story of Time is one that you’d expect to hear on stage at WWDC: two teenage developers, Shaan Singh (17) and Erik van Der Plas (15), create an app to help you be more productive. It’s upvoted on Product Hunt almost 650 times in two days and climbs the productivity charts in the App Store.

But what is Time, and what do two teenagers know about being productive in your work?

Let’s find out.

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Working with Duet Display

Stumbling around on a Monday morning, I wake up too late, throw on a hat, and unplug four devices: my 12.9" iPad Pro, my iPhone 7, its companion Apple Watch, and my 12" MacBook. The first and last are tossed in my backpack to be used in and between classes to take notes, check social media, and design documents.

When I sit down in my design class, I pull out my MacBook, open inDesign, and try to manage multiple windows as I pull images from the Web and import them into my document. On the MacBook's 12" screen, the limited real estate forces me to use a slew of keyboard shortcuts and trackpad gestures as I jump between apps. Frustrated, I pull out my iPad, fire up an iOS app to replace one on the Mac, and work in two separate environments.

The problem here is obvious: although macOS and iOS functionality overlaps, working in two OSes simultaneously isn't ideal. The inability of the iPad to act as an extension of the MacBook's display limits my productivity. Even people with larger 15" MacBook Pros would probably appreciate it if their iPad's screen was available to display Mac apps.

For a while, I've been trying to solve this problem by using Duet Display, an iOS app that allows your iPad or iPhone to function as a second screen for your Mac or Windows PC. Duet has been around for a couple of years, but continues to get significant updates to speed it up, reduce lag, and offer touchscreen support. The fundamentals, however, are still the same: Duet, with an iOS device, can be your mobile Mac monitor.

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Timepage for iPhone Adds Better Syncing, New Theme Colors, More in Version 2.0

Continuing their blistering pace of development, the team at Bonobo Labs have updated their award-winning app, Moleskine Timepage, to version 2.0.

The update features a slew of performance updates, which the developers attribute to a "whole new code foundation that makes it faster to use and optimizes how your calendars are synced." Also aiding in the fluidity are new animations throughout the app.

With 2.0, Timepage is now much more customizable, allowing you to change the text size, theme colors, and calendar colors. For example, tapping into "Themes" let you choose from a wide range of colors, alter the intensity of it, and then add a highlight color. Additionally, you can pinch on the timeline to adjust how many days are displayed at once, from three up to ten. The result of these options is a more personal Timepage, one with dozens of variations of the same great design.

Adding and editing events is also much improved thanks to additions like a "+" button to add events (for those who didn't like the swipe gesture) and phone number, URL, flight number, and email address support in the note section. Editing dates is now much easier, too – just tap the date after going in to edit.

Finally, the update rounds out with improvements to repeating events and preference syncing between devices.

Instead of going for a full-on redesign, I'm happy to see that Timepage has made its 2.0 update a combination of tweaked aesthetics and speed improvements. Timepage has undoubtedly been my app of the year, and this update marks a solid end to a remarkable year of development from the Bonobo Labs team.

To see the full release notes or to buy Timepage for iPhone ($4.99), check it out in the App Store here. The iPad version, which received many of the customization features in version 1.1.0, can be found here ($6.99).


Television Time Review: A Modern Guide to TV

Many years ago, weekends at my grandparents' went like this: flip on the TV, peruse through all the channels hoping to find something I like, and eventually hand over the remote to my grandfather, when he would then search the paper TV guide for that night’s programming.

The days of using those guides are long gone, but the need to see what shows are coming up is still relevant. For that, I’ve been using Television Time, a beautiful TV guide for iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch.

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Partly Sunny Review: Weather Reimagined

When Apple introduced the App Store in 2008, much of the excitement spanned from the opportunities and functionalities these new apps would bring to the iPhone. Many of the first apps were forays into markets untouched by the stock apps – games, social networks, and read-it-later services.

Eight years later, the trends are different; with millions of apps covering almost every genre imaginable, a lot of this year's best apps are refinements or new takes on the same functionalities some of Apple's stock apps offer.

That's where Partly Sunny comes in – it's a weather app that, at first glance of its icon, looks almost identical to Apple's Weather. But after tapping into it, Partly Sunny shakes the similarities and introduces a robust, beautiful new way to view weather information.

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Apple’s October 27 Keynote by the Numbers

At Apple's "Hello Again" keynote Thursday, the company continued its tradition of letting the public in on its most important figures. Whether it was a recap of user and sales numbers or figures regarding the new products, Apple gave us plenty of numbers to digest.

Here's a list of significant facts and figures from Apple.

13-Inch MacBook Pro with Touch Bar
- 14.9 mm thick
- 23% less volume than previous generation
- 3 pounds
- 2x faster graphics
- Up to 2x faster storage
- 103% faster gaming performance
- 76% faster video editing performance
- 76% faster 3D graphics performance
- Starts at $1799

13-Inch MacBook Pro
- 13% smaller in volume than the MacBook Air
- 12% thinner than the MacBook Air
- Starts at $1499

15-Inch MacBook Pro with Touch Bar
- 15.5 mm thick
- 20% less volume than previous generation
- 4 pounds
- 2.3x faster graphics
- 130% faster 3D graphics performance
- 60% faster gaming performance
- Can power 2 5K displays
- Starts at $2399

MacBook Pro Displays
- 67% brighter
- 67% higher contrast ratio
- 25% more colors

MacBook Pro Bodies
- 2x larger trackpad
- 2nd-generation butterfly switches
- 4 Thunderbolt 3 ports on the 13-inch and 15-inch Touch Bar MacBook Pros
- 2 Thunderbolt 3 ports on the 13-inch MacBook Pro

Misc.
- 400 million have "viewed and enjoyed" Memories on iPhone
- 60% of iOS users are on iOS 10, with 32% on iOS 9
- Currently, there are over 1600 apps from video content providers on Apple TV
- There are over 8000 Apple TV apps in the App Store
- This is the 25th anniversary of Apple's first notebook, the PowerBook

You can also follow all of the MacStories coverage of today's Apple's keynote through our October 27 Keynote hub , or subscribe to the dedicated October 27 Keynote RSS feed.


Moleskine Releases Timepage for iPad

Moleskine's Timepage has been a MacStories favorite ever since I reviewed it for the iPhone back in January. With its innovative design and slick group of features, it was an easy pick for my calendar of choice – with one big caveat: no iPad version.

Last week, the team at MacStories finally got our wish in Timepage for iPad. In it, we get all the same features we've come to love in previous versions in a beautifully designed package supporting the larger screen.

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