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Posts tagged with "iPhone"

Apple Releases Remix Sessions, Sound Packs, and Producer Packs for GarageBand on the iPhone and iPad

Source: Apple.

Source: Apple.

Today, Apple announced Sound Packs for GarageBand for iOS and iPadOS from artists and producers that allow users to remix hit tracks from Dua Lipa and Lady Gaga and create their own music, using hundreds of loops and sounds from producers that include Boys Noize, Mark Lettieri, Oak Felder, Soulection, Take A Daytrip, Tom Misch, and TRAKGIRL.

Apple VP of Worldwide Product Marketing Bob Borchers explained that:

GarageBand continues to be a catalyst for music creation — making it easy for novices to get started and for seasoned pros to develop their ideas on the go. For this update, we’ve collaborated with an incredible group of artists and producers to give musicians an amazing collection of new sounds to play with, and we hope even more people will be inspired to tap into their creativity and start making music in GarageBand.

Source: Apple.

Source: Apple.

The Remix Sessions feature Break My Heart by Dua Lipa and Free Woman by Lady Gaga and allow users to remix the tracks using GarageBand’s built-in tools. Apple is also releasing seven Producer Packs from big names in music production. According to Apple’s press release:

Each Producer Pack is bursting with hundreds of royalty-free loops, beats, instruments, drum kits, synth patches, and samples that embody the sound and vibe of each producer. And in-app videos feature each producer offering words of encouragement to beginners, as well as insights into their creative process.

Source: Apple.

Source: Apple.

One of the Producer Packs will serve as a companion piece to an upcoming docuseries with producer Mark Ronson called “Watch the Sound With Mark Ronson.” The TV+ series, which Apple says “explores and celebrates the intersection of music and technology,” will let GarageBand users create music using sounds inspired by the series.

I’m a little surprised that the Mac version of GarageBand isn’t part of Apple’s announcement today, but I love these sorts of add-ons to apps like GarageBand. This content allows fans of artists and producers to work with the same raw materials they do to come up with remixes and original music that express their personal tastes using a tool that is very approachable and fun.


Apple Captured in a Single Email Message

Matthew Panzarino writing at TechCrunch breaks down an email message between Steve Jobs, Bertrand Serlet, Scott Forstall, and others that documents the moment the App Store was born. Here’s the message:

The email captures an important moment in Apple’s history, but as Panzarino explains, it’s also an important lesson in effective leadership:

All in all, this exchange is a wildly important bit of ephemera that underpins the entire app ecosystem era and an explosive growth phase for Internet technology. And it’s also an encapsulation of the kind of environment that has made Apple an effective and brutally efficient company for so many years.

It’s also fascinating to learn how soon after the iPhone’s debut the call was made to let third-party apps onto the platform:

Though there has been plenty of established documentation of Steve being reluctant about allowing third-party apps on iPhone, this email establishes an official timeline for when the decision was not only made but essentially fully formed. And it’s much earlier than the apocryphal discussion about when the call was made. This is just weeks after the first hacky third-party attempts had made their way to iPhone and just under two months since the first iPhone jailbreak toolchain appeared. 

Apple is far larger today than it was in 2007, but it was by no means small then either. The sort of ruthlessly efficient decision-making on display in Serlet and Jobs’ interaction is a lot easier for startups with a handful of employees, which makes it notable for a company of Apple’s size in 2007.

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MindNode for iPad and iPhone Adds Editable Outline Mode

First seen in the mind mapping app’s Mac version earlier this year, MindNode has added an editable outline mode to its iPad and iPhone versions. I was impressed with MindNode’s editable outline mode on the Mac, and I’m happy to report that the iPad and iPhone versions are every bit as good. The app’s editable outline takes advantage of the iPad and iPhone’s unique features to provide the same useful alternative perspective on your mind map that the Mac version offers.

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Apple Releases New App Tracking Transparency Video

Apple has released a new video in its ongoing ‘Privacy. That’s iPhone’ campaign titled ‘Tracked.’ The latest spot starts with the lead character purchasing a coffee and then being followed around all day by a growing crowd of people that intrude on his privacy. Back home at the end of the day, the protagonist is prompted by his iPhone to ‘Ask App Not to Track’ or ‘Allow’ tracking, and as soon as ‘Ask App Not to Track’ is chosen, the mob of people crowding his apartment pop like balloons, disappearing in puffs of smoke.

Privacy isn’t an easy thing to depict visually, and no doubt, someone will take issue with aspects of the way the video portrays app trackers, but I enjoyed it. The video is entertaining, but it’s also useful to anyone who doesn’t realize how intrusive cross-app and website tracking can be.

This isn’t the first video released in the series. Late last month, Apple released ‘App Tracking Transparency’, which explains how the iOS 14.5 feature works. Earlier this year, the company also released ‘A Day In the Life of Your Data,’ a case study with real-world examples of what app trackers can do.


Reflector 4 Updated with Modern UI and M1 Mac Support

Reflector 4, an app for mirroring iPhones, iPads, and other devices to the Mac, has been updated with a new design, M1 Mac support, and new onscreen device frames. Whether you’re making screencasts, demoing apps for a group, or in a classroom environment, Reflector lets you wirelessly transmit your device’s UI to your Mac and record it too. In addition to mirroring iPhones and iPads, which is what I did in my testing, you can also mirror Android, Windows, and Chromebook devices. Think of it as Apple TV and Chromecast’s mirroring and streaming features all on a Mac, thanks to this one simple menu bar app.

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Apple Announces Partnership with (RED) to Combat HIV/AIDS and COVID-19 and Highlights Its PPE Donations in Zambia

Apple announced today that it is expanding its partnership with (RED), a relationship that spans fourteen years and has raised nearly $250 million to fund HIV and AIDS programs around the world, offering prevention, testing, and counseling services.

The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted HIV/AIDS programs around the world, so earlier this year, Apple’s (RED) contributions were redirected to the Global Fund’s COVID-19 Response to mitigate the impact of COVID-19 on HIV/AIDS programs.

According to Apple’s press release:

These funds have allowed for additional contact tracing in South Africa, helped secure critical personal protective equipment (PPE) for health workers and emergency medical equipment in Ghana, and enabled the purchase of motorbikes to deliver HIV treatment to local communities that have been unable to seek in-person health services due to COVID-19. Apple also donated millions of PPE units to the Ministry of Health in Zambia, including both surgical masks sourced from its supply chain and face shields designed and produced by Apple.

The PRODUCT(RED) iPhone 12 and Apple Watch Series 6.

The PRODUCT(RED) iPhone 12 and Apple Watch Series 6.

Apple’s support of (RED) continues this year with donations of 100% of all eligible proceeds from PRODUCT(RED) devices to the Global Fund’s COVID-19 Response through June 30, 2021. The company will also donate $1 of every purchase made using Apple Pay on apple.com, or in the Apple Store app or an Apple retail store through December 7, 2020.

Apple is working to raise awareness of World AIDS Day too with red logos and window displays in retail stores, features on the App Store, tie-ins with Apple Music and The Ebro Show on Apple Music 1, and a special Watch Now collection in the Apple TV app.

A Zambian healthcare worker wearing an Apple-produced face shield.

A Zambian healthcare worker wearing an Apple-produced face shield.

Separately, Apple issued a press release about its donation of PPE to healthcare workers in Zambia to help them combat COVID-19 and HIV. Working with Zambia’s Ministry of Health, Apple donated:

millions of units of personal protective equipment (PPE) to the Ministry of Health in Zambia. That includes both surgical face masks Apple sourced from its supply chain as well as face shields designed and produced by Apple.

As the press release explains, the donations have protected front-line healthcare professionals and provided patients with the confidence to continue their treatments for HIV.


Apple’s iPhone 12 Lineup: The MacStories Overview

Today during its streamed event from Apple Park, Apple debuted its flagship iPhone 12 lineup consisting of four separate devices, the largest number of new models ever debuted at once:

  • iPhone 12 mini
  • iPhone 12
  • iPhone 12 Pro
  • iPhone 12 Pro Max

The iPhone 12 and 12 mini are the more affordable options, while the two Pro models add premium features, most notably better camera systems, at an additional cost. All four devices share a lot in common, however, such as the new A14 processor, support for 5G networking, a fresh physical design inspired by the iPad Pro, camera upgrades, support for new magnetic accessories, and more.

The iPhone 12 and 12 Pro will be available for pre-order this Friday, October 16 starting at $799 and $999, respectively, and ship on October 23. The iPhone 12 mini ($699) and 12 Pro Max ($1,099) won’t arrive until a few weeks later: their pre-orders open November 6 and they’ll arrive in customers’ hands on November 13.

Which model is right for you? Here’s a full overview of everything new for each device.

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Apple Launches New 4.7-inch iPhone SE at $399

Today Apple announced the successor to 2016’s iPhone SE, a new model that retains the same name and goal of being the budget option for customers. The new iPhone SE will be available for pre-order this Friday, April 17, it ships one week later on April 24, and starts at $399, the same price the original SE had when it launched. Unlike that original model, though, the new SE carries an altogether different form factor. While the original SE was based on the iPhone 5’s 4-inch design, the new SE resembles the iPhone 6/7/8’s 4.7-inch design. This makes it notably larger than the previous iPhone SE, but still smaller than any of the flagship iPhone 11 line.

The 2020 iPhone SE, like its predecessor, contains modern specs but in a classic iPhone body. It has the same A13 Bionic processor found in the more costly iPhone 11 and 11 Pro models, but cuts costs in other ways such as by offering Touch ID rather than Face ID authentication, and a single 12MP rear-facing camera rather than the dual- or triple-lens arrays on Apple’s flagship models. The presence of Touch ID in particular makes the device an attractive option not only for users on a tighter budget, but also those who really don’t want to lose the Home button the next time they upgrade devices.

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Apple Announces Acquisition of Intel’s Smartphone Modem Business

As the stock market closed in the US, Apple announced the acquisition of Intel’s smartphone modem business. As part of the deal, 2,200 Intel employees will join Apple. The company is also buying intellectual property and other assets from Intel like equipment and real estate associated with the business. According to Apple’s press release, the companies anticipate that the transaction will be consummated in the fourth quarter of 2019, subject to regulatory and other conditions.

Apple says that:

Combining the acquired patents for current and future wireless technology with Apple’s existing portfolio, Apple will hold over 17,000 wireless technology patents, ranging from protocols for cellular standards to modem architecture and modem operation. Intel will retain the ability to develop modems for non-smartphone applications, such as PCs, internet-of-things devices and autonomous vehicles.

Commenting on the deal, Johny Srouji, Apple senior Vice President of Hardware Technology said:

“We’ve worked with Intel for many years and know this team shares Apple’s passion for designing technologies that deliver the world’s best experiences for our users,” said Johny Srouji, Apple’s senior vice president of Hardware Technologies. “Apple is excited to have so many excellent engineers join our growing cellular technologies group, and know they’ll thrive in Apple’s creative and dynamic environment. They, together with our significant acquisition of innovative IP, will help expedite our development on future products and allow Apple to further differentiate moving forward.”

Given Apple’s two-year court battle with Qualcomm that resulted in a settlement earlier this year, the deal with Intel is not surprising. Ever since Apple’s acquisition of P.A. Semi in 2008, Apple has been buying hardware companies that have allowed it to make more of the components that are crucial to the iPhone and its other products. The Intel deal, however, is one of Apple’s largest acquisitions and demonstrates just how serious the company is about 5G technology and gaining independence from Qualcomm.