OS X 10.11.4 Beta Adds Live Photos Support for Messages

Alongside the iOS 9.3 beta seeded to developers earlier this week, Apple also provided an OS X 10.11.4 beta with some minor updates to the OS X El Capitan operating system. OS X 10.11.4 was overshadowed by all of the features introduced in iOS 9.3 so it’s taken a few days for people to dig into the release to find out what’s new.

One of the new additions to OS X 10.11.4 is improved Live Photos support in the Messages app. When Live Photos were introduced with the launch of the iPhone 6s, the only place to view them on a Mac was within the Mac Photos app. As of OS X 10.11.4, Live Photos can also be viewed directly in the Messages app on a Mac running the operating system update.

When a message containing a Live Photo is received on OS X 10.11.4, it will have the familiar concentric circles icon that marks a Live Photo. Clicking on a Live Photo will open up the mini photo viewer as is standard procedure with viewing any photo within Messages on a Mac, and in this view, the Live Photo will now play when the Live Photo icon is clicked.

The ability to view Live Photos directly within the Messages app is a useful change that makes it possible to see Live Photos content sent from friends and family without needing to open it up on an iOS device or save it to Photos on the Mac. In the future, Apple could expand Live Photos support even further, making them viewable in other apps like Mail, Safari, notes, and more.

For those unfamiliar with Live Photos, it’s an iPhone 6s feature that adds a hint of motion to still photos, not unlike the magical animated photos from the Harry Potter universe. Live Photos capture 3 seconds of video around a still image, which is played back when a photo is touched using a 3D Touch gesture on an iPhone 6s. Live Photos can only be taken with an iPhone 6s or 6s Plus, but they can be viewed on any iOS device running iOS 9 or any Mac running OS X El Capitan.

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OS X 10.11.4 will likely come out alongside iOS 9.3, which Apple says will be released in the spring. As for other new features, the update also includes support for password protected notes in the Notes app.

Related Roundup: OS X El Capitan
Tags: Live Photos, OS X 10.11.4
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Real prints come to life with this app and printer

The newspaper that covers the wizarding world of Harry Potter publishes photos that move on the page. For us Muggles, there’s LifePrint, a pocket-sized printer that brings a similar magical to our still photos. The LifePrint device lets you embed a video inside a printed photograph, using augmented reality and requiring the viewer to point […]

(via Cult of Mac – Tech and culture through an Apple lens)


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Can iPad Pro really replace your Mac? We discuss (and argue), on The CultCast

This week: can the new iPad Pro really replace your Mac? Apple seems to think so, but we’ve got a Pro in-hand and we’re not so sure. Plus: Apple may soon offer us all a simple way to pay each other; and stick around for another classic El Kahney rant—zombie edition—on an all new Stuff […]

(via Cult of Mac – Tech and culture through an Apple lens)


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Harry Potter Enhanced Editions Now Available Exclusively on iBooks

Apple today announced that enhanced editions of all seven books in the Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling are now available exclusively through the iBooks Store around the world for iPhone, iPad, iPod touch and Mac.

Harry Potter Enhanced Editions are available in English for $9.99 each in 32 countries, while pre-orders begin today for French, German and Spanish versions, which will be available on November 9 in 18 additional countries.

“I’m thrilled to see the Harry Potter books so beautifully realised on iBooks for the digital world; the artwork and animations in these enhanced editions bring the stories alive in a delightful new way,” said J.K. Rowling.

“Harry Potter fans are going to love how their favorite stories come to life,” said Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO. “J.K. Rowling’s legendary series is perfect for enjoying on your iPad or iPhone and we’re thrilled to offer them exclusively on the iBooks Store.”

Harry Potter digital books were previously only available for purchase through the Pottermore shop that J.K. Rowling developed in partnership with Sony.



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iPhone 6s rumors, autonomous cars, and lots of glitter on this week’s CultCast

This week: optical zoom and Force Touch rumored for the iPhone 6s, autonomous future-cars chauffeur us about, and we’re back from Vegas with a full report on the best gadgets, technology, and trends from the 2015 Consumer Electronics Show. And…Read more ›



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Tim Cook on Apple Watch: ‘You’re Going to Wind Up Charging It Daily’

Apple CEO Tim Cook took the stage today at the WSJ.D conference in Laguna Beach, California, where he commented on an array of topics including the Apple Watch, Apple Pay, Apple TV, and more.

Unsurprisingly, Cook said that Apple is „excited“ about the upcoming launch of the Apple Watch, and he’s impressed that Jony Ive and his team had the foresight to understand that „something you wear has to be personal“ and that it can’t be „geeky.“

Cook divulged some new information on the Apple Watch’s battery, which has previously gone unmentioned by Apple. Cook says that people will use it so much that it will need to be charged on a daily basis. „You’re going to wind up charging it daily,“ he said, declining to provide a specific battery life for the device as Apple is still examining how people use it.

Battery life on the Apple Watch has been in question since long before the device launched, with early reports suggesting Apple was having trouble getting the device to last longer than a day. While the company was originally aiming to have the Apple Watch last three to four days, it appears that battery life may be closer to the iPhone’s battery life, requiring a charge on a nightly basis. Apple employees have also suggested that the device may only last for a full day of usage, which is why Apple designed an easy charging system.

The Apple Watch connects to a magnetic charger that’s much like the MagSafe chargers supplied with the Mac, snapping easily to the back of the device. High-end versions of the Apple Watch even ship in a luxury box that doubles as a charging stand. Apple likely has not commented officially on the Apple Watch battery as it is continuing to finalize the software for the device ahead of its early 2015 launch.

An official rough transcript of Cook’s comments during the interview, which also covered the Mac, the iPhone, Apple’s taxes in Ireland, plans for a low cost iPhone, and Cook’s thoughts on Carl Icahn, can be found over at The Wall Street Journal, and a second comprehensive live blog from Fast Company‘s Harry McCracken also has details on exactly what Cook shared during the conversation.




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Amazon Officially Announces ‘Kindle Unlimited’ E-book and Audiobook Subscription Service

Following the premature posting of information about the program, Amazon today officially announced Kindle Unlimited, a new e-book and audiobook subscription service that provides unlimited access to 600,000 Kindle titles and thousands of Audible audiobooks for $9.99 per month. Subscribers can access the content on any Kindle device or via the Kindle app on the iPad, iPhone or Mac.

The Kindle Unlimited service includes high-profile Kindle titles such as The Hobbit and the Harry Potter series as well as popular audiobooks like The Hunger Games trilogy and Life of Pi. The service includes popular Kindle features including Highlights, X-Ray and Whispersync for Voice, which allows users to switch between listening and reading a book without losing their place.

Amazon is offering Kindle Unlimited with a 30-day free trial that also includes a free three-month membership to the full Audible service with access to more than 150,000 audiobooks. After this trial period is over, subscribers must pay $9.99 per month for the Kindle Unlimited service and can opt to continue the additional Audible membership for $14.95 per month.




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