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Posts tagged with "iOS 11"

Rescheduling Refined with Drag and Drop in Timepage

Your phone buzzes. It’s a message from a friend asking to reschedule your dinner in an hour for another day. You’ve already put on something nice, so it’s a little inconvenient – but it’s also going to be tedious to make the adjustment on your calendar.

Timepage’s recent update can’t change you back into comfortable clothes, but it can make rescheduling events much easier. As with most iOS 11 app updates, this comes through drag and drop and thankfully works on both iPhone and iPad.

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Dropbox Integrates with iOS 11’s Files App in Latest Update

Fulfilling its recent promise of integrating with iOS 11’s Files app during the OS’s launch week, Dropbox today released an updated iOS app that does just that. It is now a full-fledged file provider in Files, allowing you to access and manage all of your Dropbox files directly from the Files app.

Adding Files support means Dropbox files can now live alongside files from iCloud Drive and other file providers. This enables things like copying files between cloud services with ease, organizing files from different providers with the same tags, and of course, using drag and drop to rearrange files (on either iPhone or iPad), or to move files to other apps (iPad only). Not all functionality from the main Dropbox app has made its way to Files, but there’s surprisingly little missing here. You can still download files on demand, and you can even share files without needing to open the Dropbox app – simply long-press the file you’d like to share and hit the Copy Link button. For me personally at least, I don’t see any reason I would need to open Dropbox anymore.

Several major cloud services pledged to support Files back in June following WWDC, and it’s great to see that, at least for one of them, that support came swiftly. Here’s hoping the rest will follow soon.

Conduct AR: Desktop Micromanaging at its Finest

I never was the kid to play with toy trains, but that hasn’t stopped me from becoming engrossed in augmented reality ones thanks to Conduct AR.

An AR follow-up game to Northplay’s Conduct THIS, Conduct AR puts you in control of trains barreling down the tracks. As they make their routes, they’ll pick up passengers at stations for later drop off, but only if you can guide the trains there without crashing into obstacles along the way.

To do that, you’ll switch tracks, stop, and start the trains, carefully pointing your camera at them and tapping the screen at the same time. In AR, though, this can be tricky, as Conduct AR requires you to move around, peer into the level, and get close enough to where you can control the trains in a precise way.

Many AR apps are meant to be seen as a big picture experience, like a rocket ship landing in your backyard pool. That’s not Conduct AR. In order to play the game right, you have to survey the level and get a perfect understanding of how to play it. As you progress through the levels, so much is happening that you always have to be moving, checking tunnels, and guaranteeing your trains don’t crash.

Conduct AR’s performance is sufficient but occasionally shaky, sometimes in the literal sense; there were occasions where the tracking fell off and required an app restart. Still, those issues are relatively uncommon, and the game often runs well.

If you’re looking to dive into Conduct AR, I really recommend that you play it on a desktop or table – with a flat surface directly in front of you, it’s much easier to stand up, move around, but also play comfortably. You should also know that the game has run hot on my iPhone 7, but I’d expect this to get figured out on the iOS end as ARKit develops.

Once you become addicted to Conduct AR, you’ll be happy to see that there’s plenty of content to work through before you finish the game. For $3.99, it’s worth the experience alone, but having many levels makes it all that much sweeter. Those interested in the new AR experiences in iOS should pick up Conduct AR in the App Store here.

LookUp 4.0 Adds Object Recognition via Vision Framework, Plus Drag and Drop

LookUp is a beautifully designed dictionary app that we first reviewed earlier this year. With its effective use of bold headings and colorful graphics atop a white background, Lookup visually looks like a sister app to Apple’s new App Store – and considering how much I love the new App Store, that’s high praise. I won’t spend any time on the basics of the app though, as you can check out Jake’s original review for that. Instead, I want to focus on how LookUp harnesses the power of new iOS 11 technologies.

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TeamViewer Quick Support Adds Live Screen Sharing for iOS 11

TeamViewer Quick Support has been available on the App Store for several years, but due to the sandboxed nature of iOS, it hasn’t been as powerful or helpful as I’m sure its makers would have liked. But among a host of exciting new technologies in iOS 11, Apple has introduced a screen sharing feature that makes an app like Quick Support a truly powerful tool for giving or receiving support.

Quick Support uses a new and improved version of Apple’s ReplayKit framework to enable true screen sharing; with it, you can broadcast a live recording of your iPhone or iPad’s screen so that anyone with the broadcast link will be able to follow, in real-time, your actions on the device.

Getting started with Quick Support couldn’t be easier. First, you’ll need to make sure that the new Screen Recording option is set up in Control Center. Once it is, open Control Center, use 3D Touch (or a long-press) on the Screen Recording icon, select TeamViewer, then hit Start Broadcast. At this point you’ve officially begun streaming your device’s display online. In order to let others access it, open Quick Support and tap Send Your ID. The share sheet will come up, allowing you to send the broadcast link to others so they can view it from any other device.

As the app’s name implies, the focus of Quick Support is to serve as a support tool. If you need help with one of your iOS devices, you can broadcast your screen to the people working to assist you. Or, perhaps a more likely scenario most MacStories readers will find themselves in, you can install Quick Support on the device of a family member or friend who needs your help to figure out, for instance, why on earth their newly-updated iOS 11 iPad is acting so strange. The quick and easy setup, aided by a step-by-step walkthrough in the app, makes Quick Support an ideal option for non-techies.

In my testing, Quick Support worked great and provided a seamless experience for those viewing my screen broadcast. Viewers do have to download the TeamViewer app for whichever device they’re using, whether a Mac, PC, or iOS device, but it’s still a user-friendly process – the download will trigger upon clicking the given link, and once the app’s installed, future broadcast-viewing is effortless.

TeamViewer Quick Support is available for iPhone and iPad on the App Store.

Airmail Incorporates Drag and Drop, Quick Look on iPhone, and Voice Reply on Apple Watch

Airmail is my primary email client on iOS and macOS for two reasons. First, I can customize nearly everything in the app, so it’s laid out and works the way I want. Second, Airmail integrates with several third-party apps and services that I use, so it’s easy to get information out of Airmail and dump it into apps like Todoist or Trello. But sometimes, I want to put a little context around the information I’m exporting from Airmail. For those times, Airmail’s new drag and drop new functionality is ideal.

I get email from MacStories and AppStories sponsors every week. Many of those messages include a combination of files and text about an upcoming sponsorship. Often, those messages are also the conclusion of a back-and-forth conversation that includes additional relevant information I need. To keep track of the details in one place, I typically start a note in Apple Notes.

With the addition of iOS 11’s drag and drop support on the iPad, the process is easier than ever before. I can start with a few background notes for context and then select and drag in just the parts of a message that I need along with any images. I could accomplish this with the share sheet too, but I’d end up with extraneous information from the message and spend more time tapping around in Airmail and the share sheet. Instead, the result with drag and drop is an organized note that includes only the information I need, which makes it easier to use as a reference.

Another option that I’m considering using for some tasks is Apple’s new Files app. Dragging text into Files creates a rich text file that can be stored alongside any attachments producing a similar result to what you can accomplish in Notes.

You can also drag an entire message out of Airmail, which generates a PDF of its full text but without any attachments. That’s less attractive to me for most of my day-to-day tasks, but it is a nice way to archive an important conversation. Of course, you can also drag files from Files into Airmail as attachments or drag links, text, and other content into the body of a message.

Quick Look is available with Spotlight search results on iPhones that support 3D Touch.

Quick Look is available with Spotlight search results on iPhones that support 3D Touch.

On iPhones that support 3D Touch, you can now press on a message to open a Quick Look preview from Spotlight search results. Just press on a message as you would from your Airmail inbox to pop up a preview of a message in Spotlight. The feature is a nice way to be sure you've found the correct message before launching Airmail.

The final addition to Airmail is Voice Reply on the Apple Watch. If you’re out and can’t type a response, you can pick Voice Reply to record a short message that’s sent as an MP4 attachment to your reply. I’m not a fan of responding to email on my Apple Watch, but when a response has to be sent right away, replying with a short recording is easier than other methods.

Email is a competitive category on the App Store. Airmail, which won an Apple Design Award at WWDC this year, has continued to improve with regular updates and currently has one of the broadest sets of features and highest levels of customization possible on iOS and macOS, which means it will remain my primary email client for the foreseeable future.

Airmail is available on the App Store.