Microsoft updates Cortana for iOS with better voice interactions and 3D Touch support

Microsoft has updated its digital assistant to version 1.4.0 on iOS, bringing various new features including a Today View, 3D Touch support, faster loading times, better voice interactions, and more. Read more…

Windows 8.0 support ends today; users instructed to upgrade to stay secure

Those still on Windows 8.0 will need to upgrade to a newer version of Microsoft’s OS as of today or else risk using a less secure operating system as its support period comes to a close. Read more…

Swiss Manufacturer Creates High-End Mechanical Apple Watch Clone

Ahead of the Apple Watch’s launch, many high-end Swiss watch makers were critical of its design and Apple’s efforts to position it as a high-fashion item. TAG Heuer CEO Jean-Claude Biver went as far as to call it „too feminine,“ saying the Apple Watch looked like „it was designed by a student in their first trimester.“

As time has passed, opinions on the Apple Watch have changed. It has prompted some high-end luxury watch makers to consider delving into the smart watch market themselves, and it also seems to be the inspiration behind high-end watchmaker H. Moser & Cie.’s latest product.

Shared today by watch site Hodinkee, H. Moser & Cie.’s Swiss Alp Watch has a design that’s immediately familiar, featuring a rectangular watch face with curved, rounded edges, a crown at the side, and Apple Watch-style lugs for holding a band in place.

Constructed from solid 18-karat white gold, the Swiss Alp Watch measures in at 38.2mm by 44mm, with a depth of 10.3mm. That’s comparable to the 42mm Apple Watch, which is 35.9mm by 42mm with a depth of 10.5mm. It comes with a beige kudu leather strap with a white gold pin buckle.

The resemblance between the Swiss Alp Watch and the Apple Watch is purely physical. There is no processor, no OLED display, and no sensors in the Swiss Alp Watch, which is entirely mechanical. When flipped over, there’s no heart rate sensor – instead, the inner mechanics of the watch (a finished tonneau movement with a Straumann hairspring, according to Hodinkee) are visible through a clear sapphire crystal panel.

H. Moser & Cie. does not mention the Apple Watch on its website or in its marketing materials, but when speaking to Hodinkee, H. Moser & Cie. CEO Edouard Meylan said the Swiss Alp Watch is symbolic, serving as a proof traditional mechanical watchmaking has a future in a world where the digital smart watch is becoming commonplace. Swiss watchmaking, he says, has weathered other challenges and it will continue on.

„Today, H. Moser & Cie. launches the Swiss Alp Watch as a statement of this new challenge and to prove that traditional mechanical watchmaking has a future, and it is, in fact, the future. It is much more than a watch for us. The Swiss Alp Watch is symbolic. It represents our resilience, our ferocious desire to fight for our values and traditions. It embodies everything we believe in.“

Given that H. Moser & Cie. is pricing the white gold Swiss Alp Watch at $24,900 with only 50 pieces available, it’s unlikely Apple will take offense over the copycat design.

The full story of the H. Moser & Cie. Swiss Alp Watch, which includes background color on the Swiss watch industry and hands-on details, can be read over at Hodkinee.
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Apple Releases iTunes 12.3.2 With Improved Browsing of Classical Music in Apple Music

Apple today released a minor iTunes update for OS X El Capitan users, which brings the desktop version of Apple Music in line with the recently released iOS 9.2 version of Apple Music. The update adds support for works, composers, and performers when listening to Classical music in Apple Music, and it brings general stability and performance improvements.

This update allows you to see works, composers, and performers while browsing Classical music in the Apple Music catalog. It also includes stability and performance improvements.

Today’s update is available for all OS X El Capitan users and follows iTunes 12.3.1, a minor update that was released in October.
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New Update Makes Tumblr First Major Social Network to Support Live Photos

While iPhone 6s and 6s Plus users can share Live Photos with each other through services like iMessage, the hybrid image / video can’t be easily shared to social networks. Today, Tumblr updated its iOS app with Live Photos support, making it the first major social network to do so.

As TechCrunch notes, Tumblr users tend to upload, share, and re-share GIFs and other kinds of animated images, including memes, at a rapid rate, likely making Tumblr the first place where Live Photos would be widely seen and viewed.

The app was also updated with 3D Touch support. Now, users can press down on the app’s icon to search the service from their home screen, activate Live Photos, and peek and pop into other users’ Tumblrs by clicking on their name or avatar. While Tumblr does support Live Photos, they’re only viewable within its iOS app. Other updates to the Tumblr app include the ability to send a post to any Tumblr user and messaging.

Tumblr for iOS is available in the App Store for free. [Direct Link]

Tag: Live Photos
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Tim Cook Accepts 2015 Ripple of Hope Award at RFK Center for Justice and Human Rights

Apple CEO Tim Cook accepted the 2015 Ripple of Hope Award at the Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice and Human Rights on Tuesday night, and gave a nearly twelve minute speech about the need for social change, reports Bloomberg.

Tim Cook at the RFK Center for Justice and Human Rights (Image: Bloomberg)

Cook, who spoke after Evercore’s Roger Altman and Unesco ambassador Marianna Vardinoyannis, discussed a wide range of ongoing social issues, including the Syrian refugee crisis, climate change, Apple’s charitable work, access to quality education, privacy and discrimination.

“Today, more than half of the states in this country still don’t offer basic protections to gay or transgender people, leaving millions of people vulnerable to being fired or evicted because of who they are or who they love,” Cook said.

„Today, some in our country would turn away innocent men, women and children seeking refuge,” Cook said, “regardless of how many background checks they may submit to, simply based on where they were born. Victims of war and now victims of fear and misunderstanding.“

„Today, too many children are denied access to quality education simply because of the zip code they live in. They begin their lives facing strong headwinds and disadvantage they did nothing to deserve. We could do better, Robert Kennedy would say, and because we can do better, we must act.“

Cook offered praise for Robert F. Kennedy and said he has two photographs of him in his office that he looks at each day. „I think about his example, what it means to me as an American, but also more specifically, to my role as Apple CEO.“

Read more about Cook’s acceptance speech in the full article on Bloomberg.

Note: Due to the political nature of the discussion regarding this topic, the discussion thread is located in our Politics, Religion, Social Issues forum. All forum members and site visitors are welcome to read and follow the thread, but posting is limited to forum members with at least 100 posts.

Tag: Tim Cook
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Adobe renames Flash to Adobe Animate, embracing HTML 5

Adobe has announced that its ‘Flash Professional’ application will be rebranded to ‘Adobe Animate’ next year, as it transitions its efforts towards HTML 5 canvas and WebGL. Read more…

12 Days of Deals: Save $150 on a HP Pavilion x360 Convertible 2-in-1 PC

Microsoft is offerings its annual ’12 Days of Deals’ promotion starting today that should see some excellent pricing on a wide variety of products. Today, you can save $150 on a HP Pavilion x360. Read more…

Save 30% on a KeySmart 2.0 Extended Version via Neowin Deals

Today on offer via Neowin Deals, you can save on a KeySmart 2.0 Extended Version. Keep up to 10 keys–even extra long & international styles–organized in one slim, sleek place. Read more…

Panasonic’s ‘Toughbook 20’ is the "world’s first" rugged detachable laptop

Today, Panasonic announced the new Toughbook 20, that is aimed at users that require a more rugged and tough device. The highly versatile laptop will arrive in 2016 with a price tag starting at $3099. Read more…