Apple

iOS 8.1- 3 Main Things You Need to Know

Waiting to download iOS 8.1? Don’t! Especially if you have a newer device, iOS 8.1 greatly increases the features available to iOS 8 devices in three main areas: Apple Pay, Continuity, and, surprisingly, Photos. Let’s start with one of the bigger additions: Apple Pay.

Apple Pay

Image from Apple.com

Apple Pay is a revolutionary new mobile payment system. Basically, the new iPhone 6 and 6 Plus allow users to import their credit or debit cards into Passbook, Apple’s place for storing tickets, gift cards, and the like. When you want to make a payment on a capable cash register, the phones use NFC-chips (near field communication) to communicate with the registers and simply request your fingerprint through Touch ID to approve the purchase. It seems amazingly simple, easy, and secure with Apple’s new secure element that is included in the new iPhones. This element provides a unique transaction code for each purchase that never is used by Apple or by the company or store you’re buying from. In-app payments are also supported in Apple Pay. Apple Pay is accessible on the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus and will be accessible on the iWatch, and can be used on the iPad Air 2 and iPad Mini 3 for in-app purchases only. Several retailers and stores are providing Apple Pay for both their physical locations and their apps with more retailers coming, so I think that Apple Pay will be a huge success.

 

Continuity

One of the biggest new features in iOS 8 is Continuity. Basically, Continuity is a process by which you can resume almost everything you’re doing on one Apple device on any other Apple device you own. Basically, if I was typing a document on my iPad, I could pick it up if I approached my Mac, or I could pick up a call from my iPhone on my iPad. This works for so many services and in so many ways that it is remarkable. Since I heard about Continuity, I’ve been really excited for it, and now that iOS 8.1 is available, Continuity is as well. Continuity helps make the transition between iPhone, iPad, and Mac, and more broadly, iOS and OS X, much more seamless and easy to use together.

 

Photos

Last, and somewhat least, we have Photos. Firstly, in response to the great outcry Apple users had about Camera Roll disappearing from the Photos app, Apple has restored Camera Roll! This is actually more important than it may seem. Having photos all in one place makes them easier to access and share and I’m very glad Apple put Camera Roll back in in iOS 8. Secondly, with iOS 8 comes the launch of iCloud Photo Library, a Flickr-like service that allows Apple users to edit, access, and share their photos in full-resolution between devices in iCloud. This service starts at 5 GB of storage FREE, and does increase to $1 per month for 20GB or $4 per month for 200GB. As sort of a photo-centric precursor to the across-the-board iCloud Drive cloud storage service, I’m curious to see how Apple users like this new feature.

 

Download iOS 8.1 today, see what you think, and then tell The Bengal Review in the comments below! Make sure to like if you like this post, and also to follow The Bengal Review and share this post!

—The Editor

 

External Links: 

http://www.macworld.com/article/2836081/ios-8-1-arrives-which-means-apple-pay-is-live.html

http://www.macworld.com/article/2840154/10-cool-new-features-found-in-ios-8-1.html

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iPad Air 2- Apple’s Next Big Thing?

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Apple recently announced the 6th Generation of iPad, the iPad Air 2, and also the 3rd Generation of iPad Mini, the iPad Mini 3. Today I wanted to take an in-depth look at the new iPad Air 2, the maxi version of the iPad. The iPad Air is the thinnest, most beautiful, and most powerful iPad ever.

Size

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The new iPad Air 2 is now 6.1 mm, thinner than a pencil, making this machine, according to Apple, the thinnest tablet in the world. It is 18% than the last model, the first iPad Air, and weighs just less than a pound. Having a machine that powerful feeling that light in your hands is going to be unbelievable.

Display

The display on the iPad Air 2 is 2048p, coming in at 3 million pixels. That’s an impressive pixel density. Apple also combined the three layers that composed the screens on the former iPad models (cover glass, touch sensor, LCD) into one fully laminated display that makes images better and, combined with an anti-reflective coating, reduces glare and reflection.

Performance

Apple put their latest A8X processor with second-generation 64-bit architecture into the new iPad, making it the most powerful iPad ever. This iPad also includes Apple’s most advanced motion co-processor, the M8 chip. With 2.5x better graphics, and a 40% faster CPU, and while still retaining 10 hours of maximum battery life, the iPad Air 2 is one powerful machine.

Pricing and Other Features

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The iPad Air 2 starts at $499 for 16GB, and moves to $599 for 64GB. Other important features include:

  • More advanced front and rear cameras
  • An improved aluminum hardware design
  • Touch ID
  • NFC capability for in-store payment use
  • And many others!

Overall, the iPad Air 2 is Apple’s next big thing. Slight improvements and new features that were in the iPhone line before add up to make this model a phenomenal tablet, one that I would give a 94% score at first look and declare one of the best, if not the best, tablet. Period.


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iMac with Retina 5K Display

Apple updated their iMac last Thursday. The new iMac with Retina 5K Display has exactly that: a display that is not just 4K, but 5K.

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Image from Apple.com

Display

Just to put the whole concept of 5K in perspective, a 1080p display has 1,080 pixels on a horizontal row going across the screen all the way down. 5K pixel density consists of 5,120 pixels on the same horizontal row, meaning that a 5K display is about 5 times as dense as 1080p. That’s just insane. One can barely see that many pixels in the first place, and on the 27-inch screen of the new iMac, this will look breathtaking.

Performance

Behind the amazing display is high-powered performance. Including high-powered Intel i5 and i7 processors, the new iMacs have high-powered computing power, but the most amazing improvements to performance might come in the graphics performance. Apple included the newest AMD graphics into the new iMac, providing for 3.5 teraflops of graphics computing power. For somebody who’s not a computer nerd like me, I get the impression that that’s A LOT. Also, the new iMacs have up to 3TB of storage on Apple’s performance-friendly Fusion Drive. This is indeed both a beautiful and powerful computer.

Pricing

With all this display and performance power comes a cool price tag starting at $2499. I think that this price will discourage almost all but the most advanced professional from buying this new iMac, but this doesn’t take away from the amazing capabilities and design of this computer.

 

Thanks for reading! Please like and follow if you enjoyed this post!

 

External Links

http://www.apple.com/imac-with-retina/?cid=wwa-us-kwg-mac-com

http://www.apple.com/imac-with-retina/performance/

Apple Announces New iPads, iMac

In an event today, October 16, Apple announced three new devices: the iPad Air 2, the iPad Mini 3, and the iMac 5K. Here’s a sum-up:

  • The iPad Air 2 is basically an iPad with all of the features present in iPhones that users wanted on the iPad. It features new cameras with image stabilization and other improvements, an A8X 64-bit chip, a Touch ID fingerprint sensor, and new colors, including gold, space grey, and silver. Apple is marketing this device with the slogan, “Change is in the Air”, and while somewhat cheesy, this slogan is appropriate, with the new model coming in at 6.1 mm and just less than a pound.
  • The iPad Mini 2 is essentially the same thing as the iPad Air 2 with a smaller screen size, except it contains an A7 chip and now includes Touch ID.
  • The new iMac has a 5K display. This display is even bigger than 4K and the 1080p found in Apple’s high-end laptops. This is an unprecedented move. The new screen has 14.7 million pixels. It is almost unbelievable how dense this screen is and this will be AMAZING to see.

Basically, this announcement provided necessary updates to both branches of the iPad line and also revolutionized desktop display with a 5K display on the new iMac. I’m most excited to see the new iMac, and I think that this update specifically will set a whole new precedent for desktop display and revolutionize high-density pixel displays.

This weekend, I’ll be posting more about this update and the iMac specifically. Watch out for that post soon!

—The Editor

iPhone 6 Issues?

As common at every Apple launch, people have found issues with new Apple products. Apple’s latest announcement is no exception. In fact, buyers have reported two issues with the new iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. As expected, Apple made these devices incredibly thin, with the iPhone 6 coming in at 6.9mm and the iPhone 6 Plus coming in at 7.1mm.

Now, as almost everyone who has ever owned any device with a large screen knows, with thinness tends to come fragility. However, Apple improved the strength of the front panel of glass on the new iPhone models. You would think that Apple devices would now be indestructible.

Not so.

iphone6bend

As HandzStudioz correctly observed in his article on the iPhone 6 issues, because of the fact that these phones are made of stainless steel, a somewhat supple and flexible metal, and also because of the thinness, users around the web have made claims that their new iPhones are bending in the pockets. Honestly, this goes to show how mistakenly wrong Samsung is about the whole bendy device thing, just saying.

These rumors of bending have become extremely popular around the web under the hashtag Bendgate (#Bendgate). Now, going back to the HandzStudioz article, the editor of that site referenced the fact that out of the immense amounts of complaints and problems users have supposedly faced with the bending issue (probably because their clothes are too tight), Apple has received a whopping amount of 9 complaints about iPhone 6 and 6 Plus bending issues. Obviously, this really shows how Apple cares nothing about its users and is filled with evil, greedy fiends. (If you couldn’t tell, that was dry humor. I’ll tone down a bit for the rest of this post). In fact, TechRadar did a video recently that showed how ridiculously hard it was to bend one of these phones with your hands, let alone your skinny jeans.

Honestly, this whole bending thing isn’t a dealbreaker for the new iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus models. If you’re wise and get a good case to protect your investment in this phone, this will definitely not happen to you.

 

Now, on to a more comical issue with the iPhone 6: the reported Wave feature. My friend informed me of this, and I (my dry humor self) died laughing when I saw this.

iphone6wave2

Apparently, now, with iOS 8, the Wave feature allows users to charge their iPhone IN THE MICROWAVE. This is literally the most hilariously idiotic thing I’ve ever heard. But, of course, not everyone thought that.

iphone6wave3

This image was posted on Twitter with the caption: “I tried using the new IOS 8 feature WAVE where you can charge your phone with a microwave, does not work @Apple”. Sigh from The Editor. While this feature would obviously be cool, IT WILL FRY YOUR PHONE!!!! Unlike the Bend hoax, this is a legitimate concern. Be a smart person and don’t fall for this.

So overall, worry about the Wave charging but don’t really worry about the Bend hoax.

These hoaxes are really Bengal Review fodder. If you liked this post and want to see more, please follow The Bengal Review. It would make my day and I hope it’ll make yours.

–The Editor

iOS 8 Out Today- September 17

Today, Apple announced iOS 8,  dubbed “the latest version of the world’s most advanced operating system”. iOS 8 includes huge advantages for developers, a new Health app, new interactive notifications, amazing updates to basic apps like Messages and Photos, and amazing new Continuity features that allow all the Apple devices you own to communicate seamlessly with each other, sharing data and allowing you to pick up a project from one device on another that might be better suited for the project.

iOS 8 will be truly amazing and I personally think that it it will be an effective and well-received update to iOS.

For more info, subscribe to HandzStudios for a review of iOS 8 for the iPad that will be coming out soon! I will not be doing a full-out review, but may be posting about certain aspects of iOS 8 in the future.

–The Editor

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iPhone 6, Apple Pay, and Apple Watch

This is the first of our weekend posts. From now on, The Bengal Review will make posts on weekends, with necessary update posts coming throughout the week.

While following Apple for several years now, I have not seen such a significant product announcement as was made Tuesday at the Flint Center in Cupertino. Not only did Apple make crucial and significant updates to staples in their product line, but they introduced two new spectacular Apple lines that I think will make Apple a huge success in the future.

Here’s a breakdown of the basics of what went on at this groundbreaking Apple announcement:

The iPhone was updated with two new models: the iPhone 6 and the iPhone 6 Plus. The iPhone 6 clocks in at 4.7 inches, while the 6 Plus measures 5.5 inches. I think that Apple’s decision to break into the “phablet” market was well-founded, and I think that both the 6 Plus and the 6, with their larger resolutions, faster chips, and overall advancements in design, will be huge successes. The iPhone 6 starts at $199 for 16GB, and the iPhone 6 Plus starts at $299 for 16GB.

The next announcement Apple made at this event was the fact that iOS 8 will be launching officially on September 17. iOS 8 will complement these new phones well and I think that this software update will be on a large scale well-accepted by Apple customers.

Next, Apple announced Apple Pay, a NFC-based service that allows the user to input their credit or debit card information into Passbook in iOS and then be able to use Touch ID to make safe, private, and secure payments at any of the 220,000 touchless-payment stores around the country and several huge retailers. I was so excited when I heard about Apple Pay. Customers are always looking for seamless ways to combine different parts of their lives, and this service will help organize transactions and make them easier and more private. Apple has partnered with American Express, MasterCard, Visa, and all the major banks to provide the financial resources for this service. Apple Pay will be available for the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus.

Finally, the last major announcement Apple made at this presentation was of the Apple Watch. People had been waiting for an iWatch or a smartwatch made by Apple for a VERY long time. In fact, I posted on The Bengal Review about 18 months ago about whether the iWatch (Apple Watch) would be a good idea for Apple to produce. After finally seeing how amazing Apple has designed the Watch and how spectacular the product and its specs appear at first thought, I think that the Apple Watch is going to be an amazing seller and is definitely going to be a part of Apple’s future. Basically, the Apple Watch operates using a Digital Crown, like the crown which adjusts the time on a physical watch. The demo of the watch at the presentation showed several apps that are uniquely designed for the Apple Watch and a very user-friendly, intuitive, and innovative design with regards to gestures and touch-screen usage. I don’t think that the small size of the screen is going to be a problem for consumers because Apple is going to provide two sizes of the watch, probably at around the same price. It is also compatible with many different designs, colors, and themes, and comes in three distinct collections: Apple Watch, Apple Watch Sport, and Apple Watch Edition. It doesn’t come out until early 2015, however, because it has not yet been approved by the FCC. When it does, it will start at $350, and can pair with the iPhone 5, 5C, 5S, 6, and 6 Plus.

Apple has just broken into the phablet market, the smartwatch market, and the mobile payment market, and because they seem to have done an amazing job as usual making products that people will love when other products in these categories (Samsung Galaxy Gear) have failed, I think that these new products and services will be huge successes for Apple.

What do you think? Please leave a comment below with your opinion and reblog this post in order to foster some good discussion.

—The Editor

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Apple Announces Date for WWDC Conference

WWDC 2014

Today Apple announced that its annual developer conference, WWDC, will take place this year from June 2 to June 9 at the Moscone West Center in San Francisco, California.

What should you expect from this year’s WWDC? Watch closely for updates to iOS and OS X. Apple might even release iOS 8 and Mac OS 10.10. However, you never know if Apple just has a big update to iOS 7 or OS X Mavericks up their sleeve for this June. Apple might also update Mac hardware, but it probably won’t happen.

I will not be going, but if you would like to go, you can visit Apple’s website to buy tickets. Registration closes on April 7 at 10 am PT, because this year tickets will be given out based on a lottery.

Watch out for the keynote address on June 2! Apple is streaming it and other sessions over their website.

What do you think Apple will announce at WWDC ’14? Click on the title for this post and comment at the bottom at the page!

Don’t forget to follow!

—The Editor

External Links and Sources:
Apple Sets June Date For Developer Conference- Wall Street Journal

iOS 7- What and What Not to Think

iOS 7- What and What Not to Think

ios-7-logo

There are many opinions floating around in tech circles about iOS 7, Apple’s latest mobile software for iPad, iPhone, and iPod Touch. However, these opinions are not all the same. There are strong arguments from both sides of the issue. Some say iOS 7 is what Apple needs to get back ahead of Samsung, but others think that it will not be able to accomplish this goal. So, with all these opinions out there, what is the average Apple user to do?

Well, let me start by saying that if you want iOS 7, you might have to upgrade your device. If you have an Apple Product that is currently being sold by Apple retail, you’re good. But if you don’t, you’ll have to upgrade for iOS 7.

Just to give a little background, iOS 7 is dramatically different from iOS 6. It features a dynamic new UI (user interface) design, and comes with many sleek new features like iTunes Radio. In my opinion, it is a worthy upgrade. To form your own opinion, I would recommend reading a full summary of the new features from a website like Macworld, or watching the WWDC Keynote Address for yourself. (See external links below).

ios 7 screen

Some tech writers say that iOS 7 is not a worthy upgrade. These people believe that the UI update is not going to be effective and that Apple should have pursued something that was “actually a gamechanger”. I have to respectfully disagree with them. I believe the sleek new update with its new features will definitely help Apple, but don’t take my word for it! Look it up and form your own opinion! Also, look out for iOS 7 this fall!

-The Editor

External links:
Macworld Article on iOS 7
Watch the WWDC 2013 Keynote

iWatch: Good or Bad Idea for Apple?

iWatch: Good or Bad Idea for Apple?

Over the past month, images and other details have been leaked about the iWatch, Apple’s newest product branch. This multicolored device would supposedly allow the user to access notifications from their iPhone, but on their wrist. Of course, Apple is very private, and has not released official images, pricing, or release dates, but the goal of this article is not to predict features of the iWatch, but to analyze if it will be a success or failure for Apple.

To start, I want to briefly share what the iWatch would do. Basically, it would be an extension of iPhone notifications that could be easily accessible from your watch. The iWatch could also hold Siri, music, SMS messaging, and other accessories. For a more in-depth analysis on iWatch features, please see the external links section below.

Now, to the business analysis section. Let’s start by making the common statement that Apple is kind of just sitting there. They haven’t released a new product or branch since November, and their stock and presence in the smartphone market is slowly but steadily declining. Like others, I’d say this is definitely a serious problem. So, a new launch would probably stimulate growth and product sales for Apple. As this device would be a helpful accessory for iPhone, it could also encourage same-time sales for iPhone and iWatch. iPhone is a top-selling product for Apple, so this would definitely make iWatch popular.

The only question is: Would people want the iWatch? Is it worth the potentially substantial price? iPhone is already so fast and accessible that you can see your notifications easily as long as your iPhone is within reach. So, why would you need the iWatch? This is the question many gadget experts are asking. As this is a more opinionated article, I would like to state my belief about the iWatch. I believe that Apple should pursue another product, like a new iPad or iPhone, instead of manufacturing the iWatch. I personally don’t believe that this is a good investment for apple, but hey, you never know. Look what people said about the iPhone.

 External Links and References:

MacWorld article on iWatch