Category: Apple

June 9, 2019 Off

Apple puts accessibility features front and center

By Jill T Frey

Although the meat of Apple’s accessibility news from WWDC has been covered, there still are other items announced that have relevancy to accessibility as well. Here, then, are some thoughts on Apple’s less-headlining announcements that I believe are most interesting from a disability point of view.

Accessibility goes above the fold

One of the tidbits I reported during the week was that Apple moved the Accessibility menu (on iOS 13 and iPadOS) to the top level of the Settings hierarchy. Instead of drilling down to Settings > General > Accessibility, the accessibility settings are now a “top level domain,” in the same list view as Notifications, Screen Time, and so on. Apple also told me this move applies to watchOS 6 as well.

Read the rest
June 7, 2019 Off

The makers of Duet Display and Luna on life after Apple’s Sidecar

By Jill T Frey

Of all of the WWDC announcements this week, Sidecar got me the most excited. I’m on the road a lot these days, and apps like Duet and Luna have been lifesavers. They’ve afforded me the ability to carry around a reasonably sized laptop, with an optional second screen in the form of the iPad.

Both products have their respective strengths, but I’m very interested in seeing how native second display support for iPad plays out, and I’m sure I’m not alone among their current customers. Having already demoed the macOS Catalina feature a few times at the event this week, I’m pretty impressed with the implementation.

The latency is barely perceptible, and the array of features with the Apple pencil is impressive. The iPad Pro was wired in the demos, due to the oversaturated nature of wireless technology at these sorts of shows, but the combination Bluetooth/wireless feature allows users … Read the rest

June 6, 2019 Off

Postmates taps longtime Apple engineer to boost autonomous delivery efforts

By Jill T Frey

Postmates has hired Apple veteran and author Ken Kocienda as a principal software engineer at Postmates X, the team building the food delivery company’s semi-autonomous sidewalk rover, Serve.

Kocienda, author of “Creative Selection: Inside Apple’s Design Process During the Golden Age of Steve Jobs,” spent 15 years at Apple focused on human interface design, collaborating with engineers to develop the first iPhone, iPad and Apple Watch. Kocienda left Apple in 2017 to focus on his book.

Now, he’s picked Postmates as his next project, citing the team’s spirit and energy as motivation for joining.

“My goal throughout my career has not been technology for the sake of opportunity, I am interested in making product experiences that people out in the world will find useful and meaningful,” Kocienda tells TechCrunch. “It’s not about the technology or just the design, it’s about the technology and design coming together.”


Postmates unveiled ServeRead the rest

June 5, 2019 Off

Apple’s global accessibility head on the company’s new features for iOS 13 and macOS Catalina

By Jill T Frey

From dark mode in iOS 13 to a redesigned user interface in tvOS to the dismantling of iTunes to the coming of iPadOS, Apple made a slew of announcements at its Worldwide Developers Conference keynote on Monday in San Jose. And accessibility was there in full force.

Accessibility, as it always does, plays a significant role in not only the conference itself — the sessions, labs and get-togethers all are mainstays of the week — but also in the software Apple shows off. Of particular interest this year is Apple’s Voice Control feature, available for macOS Catalina and iOS 13 devices, which allows users to control their Macs and iPhones … Read the rest

June 5, 2019 Off

Peloton IPO, VC alternatives, privacy at Apple, and cybersecurity returns

By Jill T Frey

ICYMI: As Peloton files for IPO, can its live fitness gamification model extend to other verticals?

Peloton confidentially filed for its IPO today, and the juggernaut fitness company is positioned to be one of the most interesting consumer debuts in the upcoming IPO season now that Uber has cleared the hurdle.

Extra Crunch’s media columnist Eric Peckham interviewed Zwift CEO Eric Min last month about the live video model that Peloton pioneered, and explored whether ‘Peloton for X’ is the next wave of consumers startups. If you missed it, be sure to read it now.

Which type of funding is actually best for your business?

Fundraising is hard. We explored how to generate FOMO among VCs in Eric’s column last week, but this week, we wanted to explore the routes to funding a startup, and whether venture capital is even the right option.

Source link Read the rest

June 4, 2019 Off

Apple’s new Health feature tracks unsafe headphone volumes

By Jill T Frey

According to recent numbers from the World Health Organization (WHO), roughly half of people aged 12-35 are at risk for hearing loss. That’s due in no small part to the explosive growth in “personal listening devices” like smartphones. Young people are cranking up the volume on their headphones and could be doing irreparable damage to their hearing in the process.

One of the health features Apple didn’t get around to discussing onstage yesterday tracks headphone volume levels over time. The feature, which is available as part of the Health app, is able to track listening levels on calibrated and MFi headphones (including AirPods, Beats and the like). That information will be logged as either “OK” or “Loud” based on guidance from the WHO. 

The feature joins the new Noise app, which uses the Apple Watch’s built-in microphones to measure ambient noise. That app will send notifications if sound levels reach Read the rest

June 4, 2019 Off

With antitrust investigations looming, Apple reverses course on bans of parental control apps

By Jill T Frey

With congressional probes and greater scrutiny from federal regulators on the horizon, Apple has abruptly reversed course on its bans of parental control apps available in its app store.

As reported by The New York Times, Apple quietly updated its App Store guidelines to reverse its decision to ban certain parental control apps.

The battle between Apple and certain app developers dates back to last year when the iPhone maker first put companies on notice that it would cut their access to the app store if they didn’t make changes to their monitoring technologies.

The heart of the issue is the use of mobile device management (MDM) technologies in the parental control apps that Apple has removed from the App Store, Apple said in a statement earlier this year.

These device management tools give to a third party control … Read the rest

June 4, 2019 Off

Daily Crunch: Everything Apple announced at WWDC

By Jill T Frey

The Daily Crunch is TechCrunch’s roundup of our biggest and most important stories. If you’d like to get this delivered to your inbox every day at around 9am Pacific, you can subscribe here.

1. Here’s everything Apple just announced at the 2019 WWDC Keynote

The keynote was an epic two-and-a-half hours long, but unlike TC’s editorial staff, you don’t have to sit through the whole thing — we’ve got a comprehensive rundown for you right here.

The announcements include a dark mode in iOS 13, an iPad-specific version of iOS and the end of iTunes (which is being split into Apple Music, Apple Podcasts and Apple TV).

2. Apple is now the privacy-as-a-service company

In addition to the announcements mentioned above, Apple also unveiled a unified ID platform, illustrating how the company’s approach to privacy will mesh with its ongoing transformation into a services company.

3. Fitness startup Mirror Read the rest

June 4, 2019 Off

Apple is now restricting Chinese language podcasts in China

By Jill T Frey

Just as podcasting hits the mainstream in the west, China, which is also experiencing an audio boom, is seeing restrictions tighten around shows as evidenced by new curbs from Apple.

This week, the U.S. tech giant has pulled a handful of Chinese-language podcasts from its Chinese Podcasts store, one of the few remaining channels for people in mainland China to find content immune from scrutiny by the country’s media regulators.

The crackdown seems to be taking an incremental pace so far. Three podcasters, including hosts of NickTalk and Two I.T. Uncles (两个iT大叔), confirmed with TechCrunch on Tuesday that their shows disappeared from Apple’s Chinese Podcasts app this week.

Several other noted shows, including Yitianshijie (一天世界), appear to remain unaffected, while others, such as Suijiya (随机鸭), seem to have suffered from a partial blockade. That’s to say that individual episodes appear in search results, but the podcast homepages are inaccessible, Read the rest