Title: Beta 2
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Apple Seeds iOS 7 Beta 2 to Developers with iPad and iPad Mini Support
Two weeks after Apple released the first beta version of iOS 7 following its unveiling at the company’s Worldwide Developers Conference, Apple has just released a second beta for testing.
Beta 2 is available not only for iPhone and iPod touch, but also iPad and iPad mini.
In line with previous hints, the Voice Memos app has returned in beta 2.
The new male and female Siri voices showed off by Apple at WWDC are now available in English.
Multiple users are reporting that Siri is much faster than in beta 1.
What’s new in iOS 7 beta 2
As we continue to dig through the new information in iOS 7 beta 2 this morning, we’ll be listing any major changes we find below:
This release is all around snappier and more stable
Beta 2 is now available for iPad
The Messages app now shows contacts photos in conversation threads
New animation when a message is sent
A bigger “Send” button in Messages
You contact’s Nickname now shows in Messages instead of his full name
See Messages timestamps by swiping left
Reminders app works now, and has received some UI touchups
FaceTime app has a darker background
Minor UI changes in Newsstand app
Music controls are always on Lock screen when music is playing
Siri takes initiative to learn how to pronounce names in iOS 7
When Siri first launched, many users found lots of names were pronounced incorrectly and couldn’t do much beyond adding phonetic spellings manually for each contact. With iOS 7, it appears that Siri can now take initiative for learning proper pronunciations.
In that phase, it will ask you to say the name then present a few options of how it thinks you said it. Once you choose an option, it will save and always (try to) correctly pronounce the name.This feature wasn’t mentioned during the keynote, but it’s definitely a welcome addition. We’ve also found a few other new additions to Siri like the ability to turn on the LED flashlight.
Apple Shares Once Again Drop Below $400, Despite Excitement Over Future Releases
For the second time this year, Apple’s stock has dipped below $400 per share. The share price touched below $400 in April, after dropping hundreds of dollars per share from its all-time-high of over $700 in fall of 2012. This new drop follows Apple CEO Tim Cook adjusting his bonus compensation to better reflect Apple’s stock performance and several Apple executives cashing in on tens of thousands of shares. The NASDAQ, itself, is down nearly 2%, which likely plays into Apple’s drop today.
iPhone 5S rumours and stories
iPhone 5 ‘clearance’ deals are being reported in the US – AT&T, Sprint, Walmart. At the current time there doesn’t seem to be any evidence of this in Australia.
What will it look like?
MacRumors has allegedly gotten their hands on photos of what appear to the rear shell and components of the rumored iPhone 5S. While these photos reveal little new about the device, they provide a closer picture at what we might see from Apple later this year.
Most notably, the photos depict a redesigned rear shell for the next generation iPhone, making room for a larger, dual-LED flash cutout, and presumably a higher resolution camera. Previous reports have noted that Apple has been experimenting with a 12 or 13-megapixel camera for the iPhone 5S, along with an improved night shooting mode.
There was also an earlier story with pictures supposedly of the logic board that ‘may’ be slightly narrower that than in the current iPhone 5. What does this mean? Room for more RAM, battery?
What may be new? Fingerprint Sensor
There have been no shortage of fingerprint sensor rumors surfacing since Apple acquired Authentec last year. According to several reports from analysts, Apple’s next-generation iPhone is likely to include a fingerprint sensor.
First trailer for Ashton Kutcher’s ‘Jobs’
The film was originally scheduled for release in April, but will now receive a widespread release on August 16, 2013. A minute-long clip was released back in January but the trailer showcases a number of scenes from the film.
Funny Or Die’s Steve Jobs movie “iSteve” stars Justin Long as Steve Jobs and Lost’s Jorge Garcia as Steve Wozniak in April.
Sony Pictures is making an Aaron Sorkin-written film based on the biography by Walter Isaacson slated for release later this year.
…and don’t forgot Pirates of Silicon Valley from 1999.
Bidding on Apple I Christie’s Auction Expected to Reach $500K
Yes, believe or not, someone else dug up another rare Apple I home computer, and has decided to put it up for auction. This time bidding will begin at $300,000, and is expected to reach a cool half-million before it ends.
A working Apple I went for $671,400 last month in a German auction. However, that system had the added attraction of having been signed by Apple co-founder Steve “The Woz” Wozniak.
The previous record was $640,000 for a working Apple I back in late 2012. And take heart, if you don’t have an entire working computer, and only have a working Apple I motherboard, an auction last June saw one of those fetch $375,000. So, you got that going for you… Which is nice.
Apple Takes a Jab at Android Fragmentation
In an apparent jab at Google’s highly fragmented Android platform, AppleInsidernotes that Apple has updated their “Optimizing Apps” page for iOS 6 with a shiny new pie chart, noting the profound lack of fragmentation in iOS devices. Notably, the chart shows that 93% of all users are running iOS 6, while just 1% are using a version earlier than iOS 5.
Google is well known for keeping their own similar chart covering Android device coverage. So, how does Android’s fragmentation compare? Not well. According to Google’s latest data, only 33% of Android devices are running the latest version of the operating system, and the majority of users are still stuck on the now 3 year old Android Gingerbread release.
Why is fragmentation even an issue? For one, it makes things much more difficult for developers – aside from testing their apps on a wide variety of Android devices, they also have to ensure that it works with multiple versions of the Android OS. That’s a whole lot of work compared to iOS devs, who target their apps at only the latest version of the OS, and a small handful of devices.
There’s no doubt that this is bad news for users of Android handsets, especially considering that most Android devices never get updated to new versions of the platform, let alone in a timely manner.
It’s a key difference between iOS and Android – and as the figures clearly show, one of Apple biggest advantages.