In observance of Labor Day in the U.S. (and Labour Day in Canada), iLounge will be on a limited posting schedule today. We will return to our normal schedule with regular updates on Tuesday, September 2. Have a great holiday!
The latest edition of iLounge Weekly, our weekly newsletter covering all things iLounge, will be arriving in subscribers’ inboxes early next week. iLounge Weekly is a summary of the week’s best news, reviews, and feature articles we’ve published, and it also features giveaways and accessory discount offers from various companies. There’s still plenty of time to sign up and receive this week’s edition — just use the simple form below to submit your email address, if you haven’t done so already.
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This is also your last chance to get in on our uNu Aero Wireless Giveaway, in which iLounge and uNu are giving away six uNu Aero Wireless Charging Battery cases and mats for the iPhone 5 and 5s in two different colour options. To enter, simply fill out and submit the form on the giveaway page; the giveaway ends August 31, 2014 at 11:59PM Pacific Time. Good luck!
World’s First USB Case for iPhone 5s
A new phone case by CasePlug proves you can do more with an ordinary USB plug then previously thought. The featured, built-in USB mechanism, has a rotating, quick-release plug that’s used for mounting, syncing, charging and kickstand for your phone.
Autodesk’s popular web- and iOS-based photo editor has now come to the desktop as Pixlr for Mac, providing most of the same fun effects and photo enhancement features that users of Pixlr Express for iOS have come to know and love. Users can apply quick fixes and effects from a pallet of hundreds of available options, including one-click fixes to balance out colours and lighting, or can dig deeper into advanced editing features such as merging images, erasing imperfections, and adding focus and effects to specific areas.
Apple may be adding support for a “triple-resolution” Retina Display into iOS 8 according to a new discovery by iOS Developer James Thomson. In a series of tweets this afternoon, Thomson indicated that he had discovered a bug in iOS 8 beta 5 that loads a 3X asset instead of a 2X asset, and further explained that this only happens specifically with 3X assets and not other resolutions like 4X, suggesting this indicates a deliberate decision in the iOS 8 code, rather than a matter of simply selecting the highest-resolution asset available.
Basically, it looks like UIImage has had support for @3x retina images added to it in iOS 8, and/or there is a bug in image loading.— James Thomson (@jamesthomson) August 29, 2014
Mark Gurman of 9to5Mac originally reported in May that Apple was testing a 1704x960 screen resolution for the iPhone 6 that would be achieved by tripling each pixel from a “base resolution” of 568 x 320. Daring Fireball’s John Gruber added his speculation earlier this week suggesting different screen resolutions may be used and that the higher resolution would only apply to the larger 5.5” iPhone 6 in order to maintain a proper Retina Display pixel density. It still remains unclear what hardware Apple may ultimately intend to use this on, since although the iPhone 6 is scheduled for release next month, it is expected that new iPad models will also be appearing during the iOS 8 lifecycle, including a rumoured 12.9” iPad which may also require a higher pixel density for the larger display.
Another new report has surfaced adding more weight to rumors that the upcoming iPhone 6 will include NFC support. Field & Volk has released photos to Sonny Dickson alleged to be of the iPhone 6 logic board, which appear to show NFC chips along an Apple A8 chip, which will reportedly be a 2GHz dual-core CPU. A report from Wired earlier this week indicated that Apple plans to include an NFC-based mobile payment system, which seems to have been further confirmed by this morning’s Financial Times report that Dutch chipmaker NXP will be supplying Apple with the necessary NFC hardware.
A new nine-part report at 9to5Mac reveals techniques Apple has used to “quietly manipulate coverage over the years.” The comprehensive article relies on interviews with journalists, bloggers, and PR pros — including some ex-Apple workers. Part one of the article discusses all of the prep that goes into Apple events, including how Apple plans for things to go awry, recounting once when an audience member fainted and was taken out by paramedics mid-Jobs keynote, and what happens backstage when things go badly.
Part two details all of Apple’s internal PR teams, including the Momentum and Buzz Marketing team, which “works with major sports leagues to integrate the iPad into coaching toolkits, helps music events integrate iPads into festivities, and gets organizations to deploy iBeacon-integrated apps for attendees.”
Part three notes that despite its detached public attitude, Apple actively monitors all media mentions of the company, even having employees checking tabloids for photos of celebrities holding iPhones. The company also actively pushes journalists and bloggers to go after negative reports about Apple in the press, providing them with links and information to undermine stories. Additionally, it plays journalists and publications against each other to get the best coverage, at one point telling Brian Lam of Gizmodo that he was getting an iPhone before the Wall Street Journal’s Walt Mossberg, and pushing Newsweek and Time to fight over an exclusive cover story.
Although it’s expected that Apple will debut its wearable device on September 9, Re/Code is now reporting that the iWatch may not ship until 2015. While sources claim the device won’t be released “for a few months,” John Paczkowski writes, “we’re unlikely to see it at retail until after the holiday season — think early 2015.” As the article points out, Apple’s first iPhone wasn’t actually released for nearly six months after its public debut. Though this would definitely fly in the face of recent Apple timing, it’s not out of the question, as the iWatch is a new category for the company. Apple declined comment on the report.
It’s Freebie Friday in our iLounge Deals! Today we’re rounding up a collection of freebies that you can take advantage of simply by signing up for our iLounge Deals newsletter. First up we have an audiobook version of The New York Times bestseller, The 4-Hour Chef, which will take you along with author Tim Ferriss on a worldwide quest to meet and learn from the world’s fastest learners and greatest chefs. Billed as a “cookbook for people who don’t buy cookbooks,” The 4-Hour Chef is a guide to mastering cooking and life.
We’re also still offering three months of free access when subscribing to the Blinkist mobile knowledge and learning companion for your iPhone and iPad. Giving you access to a library of content covering topics from business to popular science, Blinkist helps you easily explore new topics and learn new things in a bite-sized, ‘made-for-mobile’ format.
Last up is The Mac Freebie Bundle 3.0, a free bundle of seven great apps for your Mac, including X-Mirage, ClipBuddy, Elmedia Player Pro, cf/x Mosaic, Vidiary Video Journal App, Bits, and Sweetie.
Apple is working with Dutch chipmaker NXP to enable NFC in the iPhone 6, according to the Financial Times. NXP will provide Apple with the NFC chips, enabling the company to use near field communication for its rumored upcoming mobile payment system. A Thursday report also claimed we would see NFC in the new iPhone to be used for mobile payments. As noted before, NFC has been rumored in iPhones for years — but the frequency of these reports, just weeks before the debut of the new devices, strongly suggests NFC is indeed on its way this time around.
Incase is synonymous with laptop sleeves and cases. The company just announced its Icon Sleeve with Tensaerlite ($70), which provides maximum protection for your 13” or 15” MacBook Pro when you drop it. What exactly is Tensaerlite? Incase describes the material as providing “maximum impact absorption through a lightweight bumper frame.” In short, it offers solid shock protection without a lot of heft.