Globally today is World AIDS Day, a day set aside to highlight the ongoing struggle against this disease globally, particularly in impoverished parts of the world. World AIDS Day provides those who help support AIDS causes the opportunity to raise awareness about the disease that has killed millions and millions more remain infected. One of these organisations is Product(RED), an organisation that Apple has long been associated with in fighting the disease.
As part of their efforts in supporting Product(RED), Apple has over the past several years included products that are red in colour including the iPod lineup, iPhone Bumpers and more recently the leather cases for the iPad Air and iPad Mini. As I stated in my review of the SmartCase for iPad Air, I always personally like to buy the Product(RED) items as I know Apple is obligated to give some of the proceeds to this organisation. Apple by participating in the Product(RED) campaign is obliged to donate at least 50% of proceeds to the program. So far buyers of Apple Product(RED) products have generated
over $65m in funds for the program.
Like last year, today Apple is showing full support for Product(RED) throughout their online stores and retail stores. On the Apple website there is now a World AIDS Day banner so you can click and learn more about Product(RED) through the RED foundation. Here in London, the Regent Street Apple Store and the Covent Garden Apple Store have both changed their iconic Apple logo in the store to red instead of the normal white. This is expected to be carried out throughout the world today by Apple.
Two important links for you. First, you can see what Apple has done with Product(RED) on their website dedicated to the cause. That can be found at this link.
Second, you can find out more information about the RED organisation and their role in fighting AIDS globally. That can be found at this link. There you can make direct donations to the cause above and beyond your product purchases.
Apple has released an update for each of the iWork apps today and it includes updates to both the iOS versions of the apps as well as those for OS X. The updates brings new features and bring fixes to Keynote (presentations), Pages (word processing) and Numbers (spreadsheets). The updates for both platforms include the same new features so you can use them as you work on files on either your Mac or your iPhone or iPad.
As a side note, if you have not tried out these apps you should. The syncing between Macs and iOS is fantastic in these apps.
Keynote brings new features including:
• New transitions including Blinds, Color Planes, Confetti, Fall, Perspective, Pivot, and Swoosh
• New builds including Blinds, Fly in, Fly out, Orbital, Pivot, Scale Big, and Swoosh
• Stability improvements and bug fixes
For Keynote for Mac you have all these same new features and fixes but also have the ability to now customise the toolbar with your most commonly used tools.
For the spreadsheet app Numbers, the only changes for iOS are stability improvements and fixes. For the Mac version there are several new features including:
• Customize the toolbar with your most important tools
• Window size and placement preserved on Save
• Set default zoom in Preferences
Finally, the word processing app Pages, much like Numbers, there are not really any changes on the iOS version, only stability improvements and fixes. For the Mac version you have three new key features:
• Customize the toolbar with your most important tools
• Center and edge guides are on by default
• Stability improvements and bug fixes
If you are looking for a Microsoft Office alternative then you should consider the iWork apps. In our opinion the apps are just as powerful as their Office competitors with the notable exception of Numbers. Excel still is the class of the field if you need to do serious formula editing. Pages and Keynote however are fantastic and the ability to easily synchronise your work across your devices make it easy to use no matter your device.
It has taken what seems like ages but Apple has finally released the Apple Store app for iPad. And based on first impressions, it is worth the wait. It is, as you would expect, done exceptionally well.
The Apple Store app for iPad works in many ways like the iPhone version. Apple has however simply not done a port over
but rather has really focused on using the larger canvas of the iPad to give large, high resolution images of their product lineup. The great thing about the app though is it has the simplicity of the Apple website so buying through the app and configuring your new MacBook Air or iPad Air the way you want is simple and easy – and dare I say fun? The app also supports pinch gestures so you can zoom in on products.
All of the great services that you expect from Apple can be obtained through the new Apple Store app for iPad. This includes things like engraving on your new iPad or iPod Touch, store locator, Personalised Pickup of products and the ability to mark which stores near you are your favourite – or your favourite worldwide.
The Apple Store app for iPad is free to download and is available now in the App Store. Note that this is a separate download from the iPhone version.
Apple has released an update for their Find My Friends app, their friends and family locator app, that brings it up to the look and feel of iOS 7. The update does not bring any new features to the app nor are there any noted bugs addressed by the update. Rather it is simply focused on bringing the app to the light and clean look of iOS 7.
With this update that means the stitched leather UI of the previous version of the Find My Friends app has gone away.
For those who are not familiar with Find My Friends, it allows you to geo-track friends and family who are also iOS users. The app is a universal app so it works on your iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad. It also allows you to set up geo fences by temporarily not sharing your location and you can even get sent alerts when someone arrives at a location such as the airport or train station. It is an app that doesn’t get much love by the Apple community but once you get the hang of it, it is quite useful.
With the update of the Find My Friends app, Apple has only the Keynote Remote app to update to the iOS 7 look
Find My Friends is a universal app and is available for free in the App Store. You will need to use your iCloud account to activate and share your location with friends.
At the AlliOSNews affiliate MacMall, they have a great deal on the older version of the Apple Time Capsule. While supplies last you can get the Apple 3TB Time Capsule for only $249.99, that’s a savings of $149.
For those who aren’t familiar with Time Capsule, think of it as an AirPort Extreme wireless access point with a large hard disk strapped into it for backup and storage. I’ve had a Time Capsule for many years now and it is a quick and easy way to assure that you have a back up of your files from you Mac. For the majority of users out there, 3TB of storage will be more than enough room for your storage needs.
From a wireless perspective, the Apple 3TB Time Capsule supports up to 802.11n to cover your networking needs.
To get this special pricing just tap the link above to be taken to MacMall where you can place your order. Currently you can also get free 2-day shipping on this items.
With little fanfare yesterday, Apple released the new iPad Mini with Retina display for sale online and personal pick-up at your local Apple store. As has been expected however, stock is extremely limited and most stores in the US do not have units in stock.
Apple has been quite clear that they are going to struggle with stock of the iPad Mini with Retina because of a variety of manufacturing challenges, mostly around the 7.9 inch displays. Quality issues have plagued them and yields have been
low. The knock-on effect for those who want one is that you will likely have to wait, especially if you want one of the less popular larger capacity units as Apple simply won’t make as many.
As of this morning UK time the Apple site in the United States and United Kingdom were both showing the 16GB and 32GB units, regardless of colour, being a 1-3 business day delivery. The 64GB and new 128GB units are 5-10 business days before delivery. The dates hold true for WiFi only and WiFi/LTE units.
Most who follow Apple closely expect the iPad Mini with Retina display to do well for Apple. Feature wise it is on par with the iPad Air. This means, in every sense, the new Mini is a true, proper iPad just with a smaller display.
For more information on the iPad Mini be sure to check out the Apple website. The iPad Mini with Retina display starts at $399 for a 16GB WiFi only unit up to $829 for a 128GB WiFi/LTE unit.
With the release of the iPad Air, Apple has also released an updated lineup of their Smart Case for iPad Air. The new Smart Case has been essentially re-thought and the new look and feel of this leather case is impressive. While it is certainly not the least expensive case on the market for your iPad Air, if you want a case that fits snuggly around your iPad Air without adding large amounts of weight and girth to this ultra light tablet, The Smart Case for iPad Air should do the job for you.
The first thing you will notice about the new Smart Case is its construction. Previous generations of Smart Cases were
made of polyurethane with a microfiber lining on the inside of the case’s cover to clean and protect your iPad’s display. The new Smart Case for iPad Air is made of leather and you immediately notice the look and feel difference when you touch the case for the first time. It feels more luxurious than the older cases and doesn’t have the “shiny” plastic look of the previous generation. The inside of the case – both the cover and the iPad Air holder itself – is lined with microfiber to prevent scratching
and to act as a display cleaner. On the surface there are not massive changes between the Smart Cases for previous iPad generations and this new one for the Air. Both were designed to add minimal bulk – which is even more important on the iPad Air – and to protect your investment. But the construction and overall feel of this new case is superior to the previous generation in my opinion.
Apple has released an update for their Remote and AirPort Utility app for iOS 7, knocking two more off the list that have yet to be iOS 7-ized. The updates bring the flat, translucent look to the apps and both are universal apps for your iPhone and your iPad.
The Remote app, for those who do not know, allows you to control your Apple TV or iTunes on your Mac from your iPhone or iPad. I personally find this app to be a huge help when navigating my Apple TV instead of using the remote that comes with it. The update brings the new iOS 7 look and feel to the app while also adding support for iTunes 11.1, the latest
version of iTunes for Mac. For those who have used Remote, functionally, it is the same as the previous release other than the afore mentioned look and iTunes support.
The Remote app from Apple is a universal app and like most of their apps is free.
At the same times as the Remote app update, the AirPort Utility app for iOS was also updated by Apple. For those who do not know, the Airport Utility allows you to configure and view your wireless network that consists of Apple AirPort access points. Think of it as a way to remotely configure your wireless network from your iPhone or iPad and not a web browser.
The release notes for the AirPort Utility app for iOS update is quite literally one line: Added 64-bit support.
The AirPort Utility App for iOS is a universal app and is also free in the App Store. Please note that in order to use this app you must be using AirPort Extreme or AirPort Express access points in your wireless network.
With these two updates there are only a few apps left for Apple to upgrade to an iOS 7 look. iBook and iTunes U remain with their skeuomorphic iOS 6 look as does Find My Friends.
Coming from the Apple Special Event last week, Apple has released the new Mac Pro video and iPad Air video that they debuted at the event. These two videos are two of four Apple released related to the event and all four of them can be viewed right here on AlliOSNews.
The first video is the Apple production video of the iPad Air featuring Sir Jony Ive. This is classic Apple as Ive discusses the design thoughts and principles behind the making of the newest iPad. Apple does this type of video for every event and to date has been the only way we get to hear the genius behind Apple’s design speak.
As promised in their keynote from yesterday, Apple has released the iWork update for both iOS and OS X today. The update to Pages, Numbers and Keynote are now both in the iTunes App Store and the Mac App Store on your respective devices. The iWork update is being touted as the biggest update to the apps ever and put Apple squarely in strong competition with Microsoft and Google Docs for your document creation, sharing and collaboration needs.
Equally as important, Apple is now giving these apps away free of charge to new customers or customers with new devices running iOS 7. This is a huge savings as each of the iOS apps are $9.99. The Mac versions remain at $19.99 each.
The big changes with iWork in all of the apps are the huge number of templates that are in the apps – Pages sports 60 new ones on both iOS and Mac, new animations and transitions in Pages and Keynote, easy link sharing and file sharing via AirDrop, in Pages you can turn documents into ebooks and export to ePug and a new unified file format across both iOS and OS X. Frankly the number of updates and improvements across this suite of apps would make this post longer than our OS X Mavericks review so we encourage you to read the Release Notes with each app. We have provided links however to all of the apps both for iOS and OS X. If you already own these apps on either platform, the updates are of course free.
The update to the iWork apps put Apple squarely and competitively on par with Microsoft and Google. No longer are Pages, Keynote and Numbers looked at as second class office citizens. These apps are powerful – very powerful – and offer all the features you would expect to find in a office caliber application. Couple this with iWork for iCloud and the collaboration and sharing benefits of Google Docs suddenly have competition.
The office wars may just be heating up once again. Welcome back to the early 90s.