Waiting for the revamped Google Photos app to arrive on iOS? Well, the company has just rolled out an update on iTunes, but we’re afraid it doesn’t come with all the new features Mountain View promised at its Nexus event. The latest version for iPhones and iPads lets you share animations via Whatsapp, and if you’re in the US, it gives you the power to label people and merge face groups. Similar to the Android version, you can easily search for the names of the people you labeled or even combine search terms (say, name + location) to find particular photos. However, it has one glaring omission: it’s not Chromecast-enabled just yet. Google says that’s “coming soon!” in its announcement post — in the meantime, it has sprinkled in some bug fixes and added the ability to fire up the app faster.
When the TiVo Bolt was unveiled earlier this week, most of the questions (that weren’t about its odd shape) came from long-time enthusiasts wondering why it doesn’t cater to them? Many aren’t willing to downgrade from a Roamio Pro’s 6 tuners and 3TB storage just to add 4K and commercial skipping. Dave Zatz points out that today TiVo Chief Marketing Officer Ira Bahr has faced the company’s most dedicated fans in a thread on TiVo Community, and says not to worry. According to Bahr, “we already have a roadmap plan to bring you something you’ll like way better in 2016 (more on this shortly).” As I figured during our Bolt preview, this device is an attempt to connect with new users, among the millions of people buying streaming boxes as they use internet video services to replace or add to traditional TV. As far as the look of the Bolt, Bahr said “my view is that we have to look different.”
The posts also added detail on the yet-to-debut Fire TV app by explaining it will arrive next week, ready to work both in and out of the home. At launch it will only support recorded content, but that includes watching content while it’s still recording.
As far as TiVo’s future, Bahr says that TiVo will keep selling the current Pro until a new model is available, and a 4K capable Mini extender should arrive next year. Acknowledging TiVo’s lack of individual profiles or ability to setup and save app logins under one user ID, he said the company is looking at ways to address that. We’ve long wondered when TiVo would address some of the longest-standing issues with its platform, and along with new hardware maybe 2016 will really be the year?
TiVo CMO Ira Bahr:
As an overarching thought for this whole conversation I would emphasize what many of you have already inferred. And that is, that the Bolt product was not really designed for the TiVo enthusiast. So your lukewarm reaction is not unexpected. Bolt is low on Tuners, light on storage, doesn’t fit into your racks and really doesn’t offer this group much more than 4K and software features you figure we’ll roll-down anyway.
So this leads to “why the hell did you NOT design for the TiVo enthusiast?” First, we already have a roadmap plan to bring you something you’ll like way better in 2016 (more on this shortly). This product is on the already established 3 year product cycle which you’re used to. Second, there just aren’t enough of you to sustain the company’s retail business alone. If there were, I assure you we’d have a way different approach. TiVo is simply unable to build its business on the backs of its ever diminishing group of loyalists. We did 150,000 activations in our last fiscal year. Compare that to the millions of streamers out there, and the tens of millions of DVRS out there and you see that we’ve got a lot of ground to make up. In order to win for the the company, and for YOU, we need to expand our market. If we fail to do this, we’re not going to be able to do much of anything, We think we’ve got a plan for both the mass market AND for enthusiasts. So snuggle up with a warm multi-meter, walk through the answers and we’ll try to talk more when you’re done.
Via: Zatz Not Funny
Source: TiVo Community
Everybody loves YouTube, especially little kids, thanks to the YouTube Kids app launched back in February. YouTube have recently announced it will introduce new features for both their kid viewers and their parents, making it easier for the whole family to enjoy their favorite videos.
YouTube Kids now supports casting, so that videos on the app can now also be watched on the big screen including Chromecast, Apple TV, gaming consoles and smart TVs. The update also introduces guest-curated playlists, featuring guests like National Geographic Kids, Kid President and Geena Davis, with more planned from the likes of Vsauce and Amy Poehler’s Smart Girls.
There are also more features for parents. Whenever a parent user opens YouTube Kids, the app will explain how the system works in choosing and recommending content and how to flag inappropriate videos. Parents can also customize their own pass codes in parental controls, rather than using a generated spelled-out code.
These new features for YouTube Kids add great piece of mind for the parents of young children, who are free to watch all the Stampy Cat they want without being exposed to any inappropriate content.
Source: YouTube Official Blog
The latest Tweetbot update for iOS might be a massive update for the whole platform, but it’s iPad users who’ll benefit the most from the changes. Since it’s introducing a universal app for all iOS devices, iPad owners will finally be able to enjoy the interface that’s long been available for the iPhone, along with a split-view multitasking mode. The updated app now also has a stats and activity tab where you can see the users who followed you and retweeted or favorited your tweets. Its redesigned profile page displays recent tweets, and it gives you the option to reply to each tweet right on the notifications panel. In addition, it comes with a new column view and landscape support for Apple’s phones and tablets. Tweebot 4 is now out on iTunes at 50 percent off ($4.99) its regular price ($9.99) for a limited time, though it’s unclear how long the promo will last.
A ‘Yelp’-style app for rating people is not a new idea, but nobody’s been terrible enough to actually build one in real life — until now. A startup company has launched an app called “Peeple” which has already raised $7.6 million in venture capital, according to the Washington Post. It lets anyone with a Facebook account and cell phone rate another person and assign them a star rating out of five in one of three categories: personal, professional and romantic. Though Peeple calls itself “a positivity app for positive people,” the idea of the app is largely being panned on social media.
Genuinely don’t understand how anyone who’s ever been on the internet could think #peeple is a good idea. Is it a parody? Is this art?
— Rachel Feltman (@RachelFeltman) October 1, 2015
For the many, many people who raised concerns about online bullying and shaming, Peeple founder Julia Cordray told the Post that the app’s “integrity features” will largely stem such problems. Namely, you must be 21, have a Facebook account at least six months old, and make reviews under your real name. In addition, you must affirm that you know the person you’re reviewing and input their cellphone number if they’re not in the database. Negative ratings for people won’t show unless they’ve registered for the site, and you have 48 hours to dispute a negative rating if you do register.
As Twitter users have already pointed out, there are a host of potential issues, however. Isn’t assigning a person a number Orwellian and ridiculous? What about the aforementioned bullying? What about the fact that reviews for restaurants, objects or sites are usually biased, a problem that could be exponentially worse with people? What if you give your phone number to someone on a date and they decide to use it to rate you romatically? And finally, what if you don’t want unsolicited opinions? Even the founder thinks that’s a bad idea, apparently.
Such issues haven’t discouraged the team, however — they think they’re “bold innovators” who help people get “feedback” on their lives. In fact, they created a blog post dedicated to themselves called “An Ode to Courage,” saying that “people are scared and they don’t understand” the app. “We are… sending big waves into motion and we will not apologize for that because we love you enough to give you this gift.” (We’re assuming the whole thing isn’t a joke, of course, because it certainly seems like one.)
Ironically, for a time they set the Peeple Twitter account to private following the deluge of criticism, though it’s now public again. In response, one Twitter critic said, “color me shocked; two blond-haired, conventionally pretty, well-off white women can’t conceptualize of why a ‘Yelp for people’ is a bad idea.”
Via: Washington Post
As the debate over whether private hire taxi apps like Uber are good for London continues to rage on, Hailo has announced it has resigned its licence and will go back to supporting regular black cabs. In a statement, Andrew Pinnington, CEO of Hailo, confirmed that the company will become a champion for the licenced taxi trade in London by campaigning “every level of government, every day” to protect the industry. It also intends to reinforce the benefits of the Knowledge and make “all transport 100 percent accessible, safe, green and reliable – and lead the world on standards, professionalism, and values.”
They are strong words, but Hailo’s announcement is certainly well timed. Earlier this week, Transport for London (TfL) announced a second consultation that proposed tighter regulation of private hire apps like Uber. One proposal suggests that drivers should be made to wait five minutes before they can pick someone up, while another asked whether they should be made to pass English-language and navigation tests, similar to those put forward by the London Mayor.
To Hailo’s credit, it was one of the first major apps to allow Brits to hail a regular Hackney Carriage. However, back in May 2014, the company confirmed it would extend its service to include private hire cars. This led to a massive backlash by disgruntled drivers, who vandalised the company’s HQ and actively boycotted the company and its app. The company has tried to rebuild those bridges over the past year, and today’s announcement appears to reinforce its commitment to the industry.
There is another way of looking at it, though. Britain now plays host to a number of successful private hire and taxi booking apps, but Uber is the one that hogs the limelight. When (dis)interested parties attempt to take action, it’s Uber that takes the heat, even though it only serves to boost its popularity. With increased competition and lower margins, Hailo’s private-hire business may not have been as successful as it would’ve liked, and TfL’s upcoming reforms gave it the perfect platform to further its support for traditional taxis.
Whatever the cause, Hailo hopes it can win back the hearts of Londoners and cab drivers alike with improved card payments, lower commission fees and reward programs. “At the heart of this is our commitment to go back to black,’ Pinnington says. “100 percent Hackney Carriage. No ifs, no buts, just taxis.”
Source: Hailo Blog
Starbucks first allowed US customers to begin pre-ordering drinks and food at the end of last year, but it took until late last month for it to become available to both iOS and Android users across the country. Meanwhile Brits were left out in the cold. Luckily, the coffee giant has now decided to include the UK, as Mobile Order & Pay has today begun rolling out across 150 of its London stores.
If you’re new to Starbucks, it already has a fully-featured app that lets you pay for your order in store and earn rewards for doing so. Mobile Order & Pay comes in a new update, allowing you to select hot/cold drinks and food via its in-app menu. As soon as you’ve ordered, the app will give you an approximate pickup time, allowing you to rock up, slip past the queue and grab your bits.
While US customers can now order from their Android device in any of Starbucks’ 7,000 stores, the “first phase” of the UK trial only lets iOS device owners order ahead. The company reckons you can save between 10 and 15 minutes using this option, giving you more time to savour the real pumpkin in your Pumpkin Spice Latte (hey, we’re not judging).
Google Maps for iOS has become a lot easier to use when you’re in a hurry and quickly need to check how to get to your destination. The app now shows you all the possible ETAs for all the transportation types it supports in a single page, just like its Android counterpart. Simply ask the app for directions by typing in your location and where you want to go to whenever you need help in deciding whether you should hoof it, pedal it out, take the car or catch the next bus/train. The feature’s live on the iOS app, and you can get it as soon as you download the latest update. By the way, if you have an Apple Watch, you can now also get directions right on your wrist.
Source: Google Maps
The team at iFixit is learning a hard, hard lesson about the importance of honoring developer agreements. Apple has banned an iFixit developer account (and consequently, the iFixit app) after the repair-it-yourself outfit tore down a pre-release Apple TV sent out to developers, violating Apple’s terms and conditions. The crew just couldn’t resist deconstructing new gear, apparently. Before you ask, though, iFixit isn’t trying to stir up internet drama. It knew the risks going in, and isn’t about to fight a decision that most anyone could see coming a mile away. This will have ramifications if you relied on iFixit’s (admittedly old) native app for tips: if you’re on iOS, you’ll have to use the company’s mobile website for help from now on. The tradeoff won’t be all that damaging, but it’s safe to say that other devs will think twice about prying open gear that isn’t strictly off-the-shelf.