Apple has updated its executive leadership page to acknowledge that software engineering chief Craig Federighi now officially oversees development of Siri. The responsibility previously belonged to Apple’s services chief Eddy Cue.
Apple’s leadership page is only now reflecting Federighi’s role as head of Siri, but the transition has been apparent for several months, based on recent interviews and stage appearances at Apple’s keynotes.
While I was at WWDC this year I was talking to a friend that happens to know quite a bit about what’s going on at Apple. I was gushing about the improvements to iPad with iOS 11. At some point he interrupted me to explain the biggest game-changer in iOS 11 is not iOS productivity. “It’s AR”, he said. If augmented reality is new to you, it’s a technology that allows you to overlay computer generated bits over photos and video of the real world. Imagine holding up your phone to look at a line of shops with an AR arrow drawn over the screen to show you the most efficient route you can take to find spicy carrots.
ARKit is Apple’s attempt to bring augmented reality to the masses. Historically, the problem with most AR implementations is that it required two distinct sets of skills. First, the app developer had to have a great idea about how to use AR and second, the developer had to be a wizard at building an underlying AR engine. It’s that second part that prevented much exploration on the first part. As a result, there are very few examples of AR on iOS (and even fewer examples of good AR on iOS).
So my well-connected friend told me that we should not underestimate Apple’s ARKit. As explained to me, a group of very smart people spent years building the ARKit API’s that we’re now seeing with iOS 11. ARKit does all the heavy lifting for app developers that want to add an augmented reality system to their app. It effectively democratized AR so any developer with a good idea can tap into all that work for their AR engine with just a few lines of code.
I admitted to my friend back at WWDC that while I thought ARKit was cool, I didn’t really see why it could be such a big deal. In my head, the above spicy carrot example was the beginning and the end of how I’d use AR in my life.
When iOS 11 ships (probably only a matter of weeks from now), augmented reality is, overnight, going to transform from a fringe technology to something installed on hundreds of millions of iOS devices. I think my friend back at WWDC was right. This is going to be a big deal.
ARKit is going to usher in the newest gold rush for app developers. Once iOS 11 ships, there are going to be several developers that do something brilliant with augmented reality and their apps are going to go gangbusters. To me, however, the real interesting part will be after that initial wave, when someone comes up with a great idea for augmented reality that is completely out of the box and changes a little something for everyone. I fully expect that to happen.
Apple on Thursday announced an event which will be held at the Steve Jobs Theater located at the company’s new Apple Park campus. The event will take place on September 12 at 10:00 am.
While Apple didn’t specifically say in the invite what would be announced, it is widely expected that the company will unveil a new iPhone at the event. In fact, there could be a couple of new iPhones introduced at the event.
September is usually the time that Apple unveils its new iPhones for the upcoming holiday shopping season, so the timing of this event makes sense for that release.
With the announcement this week that CrashPlan was discontinuing its consumer-oriented online backup plans, more than a few users found themselves wondering what steps to take to make sure their data remained safely and securely backed up.
There are, of course, plenty of options for Mac users who don’t want to switch to CrashPlan’s small business backup plans: Backblaze, Arq, and so on. But it also put into stark relief the fact that Mac users miss out on at least one major feature accorded to their iOS-using counterparts: iCloud Backup.
Nice article by Dan Moren. I'd be happy to pay extra for the ability to include my Mac in my automatic iCloud device backups.
If a random storage manager or video player you downloaded recently has disappeared from your Android device, don't worry: it might have been for your own good. Google has removed 300 apps from the Play store, which were apparently merely masquerading as legitimate applications.
In truth, they were made to hi-jack your phone so it can be used as part of a botnet's distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks. WireX, as the botnet is called, pummeled several content providers and delivery networks with traffic from the devices it hi-jacked on August 17th, though it's been active since around August 2nd. In some cases, it also acted as a ransomware, demanding money from its victim.
People always praise how you can put an app into the Play Store so much faster than on iOS, but they ignore that the lack of proper app testing on Google's part means it's easy for people to sneak these apps into the Play Store and put their devices in danger.