#SquareCMD Episode Sixty Two: iCloud Tabs

By brolloh iCloud is a helpful little thing isn’t it? Sure it syncs all the obvious data we need like Calendars, Messages, Contacts and Notes but the one I use the most is iCloud tabs.
Here’s how it works: Say you’ve just got off the train after a long commute, you had plenty of time to find what trainers you want and where to find that book for Christmas but you’re home now, all those handy tabs are on your iPhone.

Well actually they’re on your iPhone and on iCloud. Launch Safari on your Mac and click on the little iCloud symbol in the toolbar – your tabs!

Click on any of them to get going again. This works the other way around as well, Mac to iPhone or between all your iOS 6 and Mountain Lion enabled devices!
More soon!

The post #SquareCMD Episode Sixty Two: iCloud Tabs appeared first on SQUARE.

Source: SquareCMD


SquareCMD Episode Sixty One: Google Maps and Siri

By brolloh Google Maps has returned to iOS and is seemingly already doing a lap of honour, but wait a second! I seem to remember a kindly gentleman called Siri giving us a hand with directions in iOS Maps. Whilst Siri is on currently on lockdown to only work directly with native Apple Apps, he can help out with Google Maps, here’s how…

Simply ask Siri “Give me directions to ‘location’ via transit”
Whilst Siri won’t immediately switch to Google Maps but it will at least give you the option to route this journey using it. iOS Maps doesn’t currently have the option to use transit routes so we’re given a list of installed alternatives as well as relevant downloadable Apps.

Select ‘Route’ next to Google Maps and hey presto:

More soon!

The post SquareCMD Episode Sixty One: Google Maps and Siri appeared first on SQUARE.

Source: SquareCMD


Apple TV Debate Continues

By Alex Brooks Third-generation Apple TV showing iTunes movies
Just as we thought we could get to the end of the year without another flurry of Apple TV rumours we’ve unfortunately been scuppered by none other than Tim Cook himself. Last week Cook stated in a television interview for NBC that TV was an area of “intense interest” for Apple. A bit of an upgrade from just being a “hobby”.
Naturally these comments, which were admittedly accompanied with some very coy smiles from Cook, have set the rumour sites into an outbreak of excitement. Notably very few of these rumours are anything to pay much attention and lack any kind of credibility beyond “I have a friend who says his friend saw Jony Ive and Tim Cook shopping for TVs in Best Buy”.
However, today a usually accurate source has popped up with a bizarrely vague article quoting a number of sources from the supply chain about Apple’s possible movements towards an Apple TV set in 2013. The Wall Street Journal’s article which quotes “officials at some of Apple’s suppliers” makes a point of assuring the reader that whatever Apple is currently up to it’s too early to tell what exactly the company’s movements are, in fact “It isn’t a formal project yet”.

The debate over Apple’s future pathway into the TV market rests in two camps. One camp believes that Apple will takes its usual strategy and storm into market with a hardware, software and content solution. That way Apple will makes its usual margins from the hardware and deliver a seamless experience without risk of third parties getting in the way.
The other camp (of which I quite openly reside) believe that Apple is clearly best placed to release something similar to the current Apple TV, probably bigger and more advanced but still cheap enough to warrant having it in addition to a TV set. The argument being that there’s no margins available in the TV market anymore, and as GasseĆ© points out “[e]ighteen months later, as Moore’s Law dictates, the computer is obsolete but the screen is just fine”. There’s little improvement Apple can bring to the actual TV hardware business, other than removing buttons and simplifying interfaces.
There’s no doubt that these two camps will continue to fight it out until the day Apple does release an actual product. However Jim Dalrymple over at The Loop touches on something that Tim Cook alluded to during that NBC interview. Cook stated that Apple’s “whole role in life is to give you something you didn’t know you wanted”. Dalrymple posits that the debate isn’t about whether Apple will go all out with the hardware or not but instead on what problem Apple will aim to solve.
As Cook explained in his interview, when he turns his TV on he feels like he’s been transported back 20 or 30 years. What he was specifically referring to is unclear but the constant linear fashion of TV programming, slow and badly functioning interfaces and a wide variety of potential ways of viewing content in a myriad of complex ways might be some of the things Cook had in mind.
Could Apple’s solution be to allow access to all TV programming on-demand and on your schedule with a simple, easy to use interface that integrates all the services currently available along with movies to rent and apps to explore that enhance and compliment the viewing of TV programming?

Source: World of Apple


A collection of tips for iTunes 11

By Matt Swain iTunes 11 is the most radical update for iTunes in a long while. It’s a fairly comprehensive redesign, although it’s quite clearly the same app under the surface. Here’s a collection of cool new things you can do in iTunes 11.

Up Next

Up Next is the headline new feature that is a great improvement on iTunes DJ which it replaces. For any song you can right-click and choose Play Next to add it to the top of the Up Next List, or Add to Up Next to add it to the end. You can also just drag a song up to the centre display in the top toolbar. Alternatively, just hold down the Option key and click the plus (+) icon that appears next to the song, or press Option-Return while the song is selected.

All of the above applies to entire albums and playlists as well as individual songs, or an arbitrary selection of multiple songs. It even works with songs from a shared library on another Mac or on a connected device.

Unfortunately the rarely used song voting features that were part of iTunes DJ have gone, but Up Next is much simplified and will undoubtably be more widely used.

Click and drag

Since the sidebar is now gone, you could be forgiven for thinking you can no longer just drag songs into a playlist or onto a connected iPhone, iPod or iPad. But if you try it, you’ll find a sidebar slides in from the right as soon as you start dragging a song — allowing easy access to all your playlists and devices.

The new miniplayer

iTunes has had a miniplayer for years, but it has been completely redesigned in iTunes 11 with a few new features. Firstly, the way you switch to and from the miniplayer has changed: Instead of clicking the green zoom button, there’s now a small rectangular icon in the top right of the iTunes window, next to the full screen button. You can also use keyboard shortcuts – Command-Option-M will switch to the miniplayer, and Command-Option-3 will open up a separate miniplayer in addition to the regular iTunes window. The benefit of having both is that you can have the main iTunes window full screen, with the miniplayer still present on other desktop spaces.

The miniplayer displays the song and artist until you place your mouse cursor over it, when it switches to display playback controls. Be aware that if you have full keyboard access enabled in the Keyboard section of System Preferences, the miniplayer will only display the controls. You can tell this is the case if you have a blue “halo” around one of the control buttons that moves when you press the Tab key.

The best new feature of the miniplayer is that you now have access to your entire music library without having to switch back to the full size iTunes window. Just click the magnifying glass search button (or press Command-F) and begin typing the name of the artist, album or song you want to play. You can play it right away by selecting it and pressing return, or add it to the “Up Next” list by pressing Option-Return.

If you find yourself wondering where the volume controls have gone, try clicking in the AirPlay button. This should display a popup that allows you to control the volume on your Mac and separately for any connected speakers.

Navigate with the keyboard

With the sidebar gone, navigating to the different areas of your library can feel a bit harder, even though it’s only one extra click away. To make things easier, you can use the Command key with the numbers one through seven to access different areas:

Command-1 : Music
Command-2 : Movies
Command-3 : TV Shows
Command-4 : Podcasts
Command-5 : iTunes U
Command-6 : Books
Command-7 : Apps

You’ll need to make sure none of these sections are disabled in the iTunes Preferences otherwise the shortcut won’t work.

Another cool trick is navigating with the arrow keys in the album view — up, down, left and right will move the selecting from album to album, sliding out the song lists as the selection moves. Press Tab to move the selection to the song list, then Escape to go back to the albums.

Redeem gift cards with your camera

While in the iTunes Store, clicking Redeem in the menu on the right now brings up a camera view in addition to a simple text field. This allows you to hold up your gift card and the code is inserted automatically. I haven’t been able to test this as it doesn’t seem to be available for me, possibly due to being outside the USA. Also, interestingly this feature was the result of a collaboration with a 3rd party app developer named Geppy Parziale, who may have got a telling off from Apple for blogging about the work.

Search your entire library

The search feature in iTunes used to just act as a way to filter the list you were currently looking at. Now, as you type in the search field, items from your library appear in a popover, no matter what you are currently looking at. The order does change depending on where you are — the media type you are looking at (movies, music, podcasts, etc.) appear higher in the list.

Typing a search term and pressing return will filter the current view, just like older versions.

Change it back!

So you hate everything new? It’s not too tricky to get iTunes back to roughly the same as it used to be. First, click Songs in the navigation bar across the top to return to the classic song list. Next, chose Show Sidebar and Show Status Bar in the View menu to bring those elements back. You might also want to choose Hide Music in the Cloud in the View menu.

Show duplicates

It’s gone! Walt Mossberg assures us though that it will be back soon in the next minor bug fix update of iTunes. It is also likely that minor bugs with missing album artwork and marking a song as a podcast will also be fixed. On the other hand, apparently Apple has no intention of restoring the Cover Flow album art view.

Home videos

There’s a new Home videos classification for movies. This prevents the awkward situation where any videos stored in iTunes had to be shown alongside either your movies or TV Shows from the iTunes Store. Videos imported to iTunes from elsewhere automatically get this classification. To change the classification on a movie, just choose Get Info (Command-I) and change the Media Kind drop-down menu under Options.

Source: Mac OSX Tips