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Microsoft releases new Outlook app for iPhone and iPad

iPhone Outlook

Microsoft has released a new Outlook app for iPhone and iPad, completing the full Office experience on iOS. This new app is a fully featured email client, worth downloading if you use the desktop version and enjoy utilizing Microsoft Office products. It’s a solid app that not only lets you tap into the world of Outlook and Office 365, but also connect to Gmail and other supported accounts.

Available as a free download for both smartphone and tablet owners, the new Outlook app for iOS offers a full email experience with calendar functionality. The requirement to switch between apps to manage both email and schedule appointments has now been eliminated, and everything can be achieved within Microsoft’s latest app release. Here’s a quick look at the newly released app (as well as the Android version):

The new Outlook has a neat new feature, which separates your inbox into two sections – focused and other. Emails deemed important by the app are loaded into your focused tab, while remaining messages are accessible via the other tab. It’s all automatic and moving email between the two tabs enables Outlook to learn which messages should be stored in the two sections.

Some other features offered by the new Outlook app:

  • Customizable swipe gestures for archiving and managing emails conveniently.
  • Schedule Email feature temporarily removes email from the inbox and returns affected messages at designated times.
  • Predictive search hunts down email, files and people.
  • Integration with calendars.
  • Built with Android design features in mind.

All available features are loaded and ready to go, regardless as to which supported mail service you’re using.

Source: Microsoft

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Rocket Cars drives its way into the App Store

Rocket Cars 3

Racing games are a lot of fun, but there are so many of them that it is difficult to find ones that really stand out. Some companies make hyper realistic graphics. Others hope to win you over with popular licensing.

Rocket Cars features miniature RC style racers that have the ability to get maximum levels of speed thanks to rocket power. Play through a career campaign to become the top racer in Game Center.

Rocket Cars 2

Players control their car by touching and holding a finger on the center of the screen, and then moving from left to right to steer. You can speed up by swiping upward on the screen, or slow down by swiping downward.

On ramps, players can perform tricks, like flipping over. Swipe the screen or tap and hold while in mid air to perform a stunt.

Players collect coins and speed boosts through gameplay. Speed boosts replenish your ability to hit maximum speed. Coins are used to purchase upgrades that improve the car’s performance.

Rocket Cars 1

The game consists of five different game modes, each with a different final goal, like finishing first, avoiding being eliminated, or completing the course within a certain amount of time.

Players do more than simply race against opponents. They also get to shoot them with rockets and blow them up with explosives. Pick up one of the nearby power-ups to activate one of the weapons. If any opponents are nearby, they will be attacked.

As the game progresses, you will unlock new types of cars, like monster trucks or buses. Once you’ve unlocked a new type of car, you will also be able to purchase better versions of them using in-game gems. Each level includes at least one blue gem that is hidden somewhere on the course. If you collect enough gems, you can get a more powerful ride, which will ultimately help you beat your opponents.

Rocket Cars is available on the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch for free. Download it in the App Store today.

What do you think of Rocket Cars? Let us know in the comments below.

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Apple ties with Samsung for title of world’s largest smartphone manufacturer

iPhone 6

Apple’s stellar quarter – during which it sold 74.5 million iPhones – has allowed the manufacturer to catch up to Samsung. According to data from market research firm Strategy Analytics, both Apple and Samsung control a market share of 19.6 percent and are now tied for the title of the world’s largest smartphone vendor.

Global smartphone sales

With a profit of $18 billion and overall revenue of $74.6 billion, Apple had the best-ever quarter by a public company. Apple’s fourth quarter sales amounted to 38.6 percent of its yearly sales, highlighting the sheer increase in sales seen last quarter.

Strong showing in China (where Apple is now the number one vendor) followed by an increase in sales in Samsung’s home market as well as Japan allowed Apple to narrow the gap with Samsung.

Global smartphone market share

The numbers highlight the decline Samsung witnessed in 2014 when seen against previous years. The South Korean vendor sold 11.5 million smartphones less than what it did in Q4 2013. For the latest quarter, Samsung posted a sales decline of 11 percent from the same period in 2013, and a profit decline of 27 percent.

Meanwhile, Lenovo’s acquisition of Motorola enabled the Chinese manufacturer to edge out Huawei to take the number three spot with a combined market share of 6.4 percent. Motorola’s return to China and Lenovo’s efforts to increase its focus in the country means that the Chinese vendor will be looking to challenge the likes of Huawei and Xiaomi aggressively this year. Huawei is also on the rise, with its 24.1 million shipments in Q4 2014 amounting to nearly a third of its yearly sales.

The smartphone market as a whole grew by 31 percent last year, with 1.3 billion smartphones shipped globally over the course of the year, with a strong growth seen in emerging markets like India and China.

Source: Strategy Analytics

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Let’s Talk Jailbreak 92: Jailbreaking accessibility

Let's Talk Jailbreak banner

Episode 92: Sebastien interviews visually impaired jailbreaker, Justin Wack, to talk about what it’s like to use an iOS device without sight, how Apple devices are the best for those with disabilities, and how jailbreaking has benefited him.

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Access the latest episode of Let’s Talk Jailbreak:

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Want more? Follow your hosts on Twitter: @SebastienPage@JeffBenjam, and @melvco, Send a tweet with the hashtag #LetsTalkJailbreak if you’d like your question to be answered at the end of next week’s podcast. Be sure to share your thoughts, comments, and suggestions below. See you next week!

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Vector 75: HoloLens, VR ads, and YouTube alternatives

Rene Ritchie

Editor-in-Chief of iMore, co-host of Iterate, Debug, Review, Vector, and MacBreak Weekly podcasts. Cook, grappler, photon wrangler. Follow him on Twitter and Google+.

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App Recap: notable discounts, updates and releases for January 28

App Recap

The App Recap is iDB’s daily roundup of notable news from the wacky world of iOS software. Below you’ll find a list of discounts, updates and new releases we think are worth checking out. Today we have a number of high profile apps, such as Duet Display and Workflow, on sale courtesy of Apple’s Get Productive promotion.

Discounts

Workflow – ($4.99 $1.99) – a personal automation tool that enables you to drag and drop any combination of actions to create powerful workflows on your iOS device. Download for iPhone and iPad here.

Duet Display – ($14.99 $7.99) – designed by ex-Apple engineers, this utility promises to turn your iPad into a secondary display for your Mac with zero lag. Download it for iPhone and iPad here.

Fantastical 2 – ($4.99 $1.99) – this widely popular calendar app prides itself on powerful features, beautiful design and its ability to understand natural language inputs. Download it for iPhone here and iPad ($4.99) here.

Clear – ($4.99 $1.99) – a wonderfully-designed to-do list/reminders app that features an intuitive gesture-based interface. Download it for iPhone and iPad here.

Awesome Calendar – ($4.99 $2.99) syncs with all popular calendar services and allows you to schedule events, write todo lists, create notes with photos, check the weather and more. Download it for iPhone and iPad here.

Taasky – ($1.99 $0.99) – a to-do list app with a unique and visually appealing design that offers features like intelligent reminders, iCloud sync, colored lists and more. Download it for iPhone and iPad here.

CARROT To-Do – ($2.99 $0.99) – a combination of a super simple to-do list app and sadistic virtual pet, this app makes getting things done fun. Download it for iPhone here.

Calendars 5 – ($6.99 $2.99) – Readdle’s hit calendar app features natural language input, an event-focused interface, and supports all the major cloud calendar services. Download it for iPhone and iPad here.

My Om Nom – ($4.99 $1.99) – in this game, you look after Om Nom, the adorable monster from the famous Cut the Rope puzzle, by way of virtual care and a variety of mini games. Download it for iPhone and iPad here.

Warhammer 40,000: Carnage – ($6.99 $0.99) – run and gun through screaming hordes of frenzied enemies in this fast-moving, high powered, action side-scroller. Download it for iPhone and iPad here.

Updates

Microsoft OneDrive – (free) – alongside a new Mac app, Microsoft pushed out a major update for the iOS client of its cloud storage service. There are too many new features to list, but if you’re interested you can read our post about it here. Download OneDrive for iPhone and iPad here.

Paper – (free) – Facebook updated its Paper app today with support for Favorite photo-sharing in iOS 8 and more. Download it for iPhone here.

Tumblr – (free) – the Tumblr iOS client was updated today with enhanced 1Password integration, new push notifications and more. Download it for iPhone and iPad here.

Releases

Particle Mace – ($2.99) – a unique twist on the classic arcade game, Particle Mace by Andy Wallace has you defend yourself in a hostile universe by swinging particles into enemies. Download it for iPhone and iPad here.

Lamp and Vamp – ($1.99) – a unique puzzle/strategy game in which you play a vampire who is trying to return to his coffin. Download it for iPhone and iPad here.

RuneSpell Overture – ($4.99) – remastered original version of Runespell: Overture combining Poker and RPG with Nordic myths, Battle Hardened Heroes and Heroines and a pinch of alternate medieval Europe. Download it for iPad here.

Hopper – (free) – a beautifully designed travel app that promises to save you up to 40% on your next flight by analyzing billions of flight prices daily to predict how prices will change, and telling you when to buy your tickets. Download it for iPhone here.

Kontroll – (free) – a vary minimalistic app that allows you to control iTunes, Spotify and QuickTime Player on your Mac from your iOS devices. Download it for iPhone and iPad here.

TapNews – ($1.99) – listen to the latest news from CNN, Bloomberg and other sources with a single tap. Download it for iPhone here.

Note: prices are subject to change at anytime, and many promotions are short-term, so if you see something you like, grab it! And as usual, be sure to let us know if we missed something worth noting down in the comments below!

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Sundance hit Tangerine was shot on iPhone 5s with a $8 app and some accessories


Given the spread of affordable high-quality video cameras in the modern world, there’s probably never been a better time to be an amateur filmmaker. You don’t even need more than a nice smartphone if Tangerine is any indication. The Sundance Film Festival hit was shot completely using an iPhone 5S, the $8 app Filmic Pro, a Steadicam rig, and anamorphic adapter lenses made by Moondog Labs.

Here’s Sundance’s synopsis of the film:

It’s Christmas Eve in Tinseltown and Sin-Dee is back on the block. Upon hearing that her pimp boyfriend hasn’t been faithful during the 28 days she was locked up, the working girl and her best friend, Alexandra, embark on a mission to get to the bottom of the scandalous rumor. Their rip-roaring odyssey leads them through various subcultures of Los Angeles, including an Armenian family dealing with their own repercussions of infidelity.

In an interview with the Verge director Sean Baker provides some sound advice for aspiring filmmakers looking to work on a budget.

Ransone said that the key to shooting Tangerine was having a team well-versed in traditional filmmaking. “You still need to know how editing works. You still need to know how sound works. You still need to know how a camera works,” he says. “You can’t just go out and shoot.” iPhone footage hasn’t yet caught up with true 35 millimeter film – a high bar – but Ransone expects it will some day. “Yes, you can make a beautiful-looking film on a shoestring budget,” he says. “But you have to know 100 years worth of filmmaking.”

It’s important to remember that Baker was only able to shoot the film on the iPhone because of the unending independent development from private companies like Moondog Labs to create cutting edge enhancements for the ever-evolving iPhone. Still, the reliability and power of the iPhone is what inspires those companies to build, and it’s an incredible step for the iPhone to be used to create a film that was screened at a prestigious film festival like Sundance.

Head over to the Verge for its full interview with Baker, including the roots of the film’s development and his comments on the peculiarities and benefits of filming with an iPhone.

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The iPad unveiling, five years later

Five years ago this week — January 27, 2010 to be precise — Steve Jobs put sneaker to stage to show off what he himself considered to be one of the most important products of his life. The Mac had been introduced decades before, the iPhone only a few years, yet on that stage, at that event, Jobs would make the case that there was room between them for a new category of device. One that, in order to exist, had to be not only better at certain key tasks, but significantly better at them.. It had to be the iPad.

No one knew what it really was or would mean that day, not even Apple. It would take until the next year and the iPad 2 for it to begin to crystalize. Yet everyone with vision for the future of mainstream computing knew it would be something.

For some it became the accessible, approachable, understandable window into apps and the internet they’d been waiting for their entire lives.

Today we have bigger iPhones and lighter MacBooks, and an iPad Air 2 that’s as usable as the former and almost as powerful as the latter. And we seem on the cusp of something… next.

Relive the original introduction by watching the video above and then let me know what you think about the iPad now, five years later.

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Samsung Galaxy S6 won’t be using Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 chip due to overheating

Qualcomm Snapdragon

News broke today that Samsung’s upcoming flagship, the fabled Galaxy S6, won’t be using Qualcomm’s new mobile system-on-a-chip, the Snapdragon 810.

As Re/code noted, the revelation came indirectly, via Qualcomm’s earnings call today, as the firm had to tell investors “a large customer’s flagship device” won’t be shipping with the Snapdragon 810 inside.

Lost business has forced Qualcomm to cut its outlook for the fiscal year slightly. The semiconductor maker did not say which client, and why, has dropped the Snapdragon 810.

However, a week ago Bloomberg learned that Samsung had opted to drop the 810 from its upcoming flagship due to overheating problems.

Instead, Samsung will now use its own processor in the next Galaxy phone.

“Samsung may release the next Galaxy S as early as March, and it can’t dare to take the risk to use any of the chips in question for its most important model,” said analyst Song Myung Sup.

The chip is working “the way we expected it to work,” Qualcomm CEO Steve Mollenkopf said on the conference call. He did acknowledge that the alleged issues were limited to the particular customer, without mentioning Samsung by name.

“We just wish it had won one more design,” he quipped.

LG’s G Flex became the first Snapdragon 810-powered smartphone to be officially announced at CES 2015, throttling notwithstanding.

ArsTechnica cautioned that “some CES previews of LG’s Flex 2 suggested that the phones on the show floor kept dimming their screens because they were running too hot.”

“There will be no problem with the G Flex2 phones,” LG told Bloomberg in an e-mailed statement. “We are taking every measure to ensure there will be no overheating problem.”

Screen-Shot-2015-01-28-at-5.18.58-PM

Qualcomm reportedly wanted to modify the Snapdragon 810 to fix overheating and win back the Samsung business. As per Korean media, LG threatened to sue the chip maker because it had previously adopted the non-modified version of the Snapdragon 810 for its phone.

You may recall that Qualcomm came out of the woodwork to diss Apple, a client, and its A7 chip which debuted inside the iPhone 5s in the Fall of 2013 as the world’s first 64-bit mobile phone processor.

“The 64-bit Apple chip hit us in the gut,” said a Qualcomm employee at the time. “Not just us, but everyone, really. We were slack-jawed, and stunned and unprepared.”

“The roadmap for 64-bit was nowhere close to Apple’s, since no one thought it was that essential,” said another insider. “Apple kicked everybody in the balls with this. It’s being downplayed, but it set off panic in the industry.”

iPhone 6 processor performance

A year and a half later (likely more given work on the A7 chip started 12-18 months prior to the iPhone 5s unveiling) and the industry still has not come up with a comparable chip of its own that would be on par with Apple’s speedy, fully customized A7 and A8 processors.

There’s the Nvidia X1 used in the Nexus 9 and Qualcomm’s two 64-bit chips, the Snapdragon 410 for low-end devices and the ill-fated Snapdragon 810.

The problem is, neither Nvidia nor Qualcomm are producing custom 64-bit designs. Both companies have adopted ARM’s non-optimized, off-the-shelf ARM Cortex A57 and A53 CPU cores as the fastest way to go 64-bit in light of the Apple threat.

Apple A8 (mockup 001)

Specifically, Nvidia’s Tegra X1 uses four ARM Cortex-A57 cores and four ARM Cortex-A53 cores in big.LITTLE configuration, plus a Maxwell-based graphics processing core with GPGPU support.

By comparison, the iPhone 6’s two-billion-transistor A8 processor uses Apple’s second generation enhanced “Cyclone” CPU core, basically a fully customized dual-core 64-bit design compatible with the ARMv8-A instruction set, and an integrated PowerVR GX6450 graphics unit based on Imagination Technologies in a four cluster configuration.

Wrapping up, Qualcomm said during today’s earnings call it’s going back to the drawing board. The company will double-down on a custom architecture for a follow-up mobile processor that will be sampled to partners by the end of 2015.

By then, Apple will have come out with the A9 and A9X processors featuring a third-generation custom 64-bit CPU design. And if predictions pan out, the next year’s A10X chip should be powerful enough to encourage Apple to replace Intel in Mac notebooks.

And all of that is the result of Steve Jobs’ visionary decision to assemble a world-class in-house team of semiconductor engineers who went on to design the very engine which drives your iPhone and iPad — and that’s no small feat by any measure.

Apple produces its own fully customized and fully optimized chips. That’s precisely why the iPhone 6’s dual-core A8 processor with 1GB of RAM outperforms the latest chips from Qualcomm and Nvidia which pack four cores and have 3GB of RAM.

Because that’s pretty much all you can do when you rely on off-the-shelf components: add more cores, increase the RAM and boost the clock frequency.

Source: Re/code

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Slow UI animations on Yosemite? Try this simple tip

OS X Yosemite Splash

I currently have two machines running Yosemite: one is a brand new Retina iMac, and the other is an older MacBook Air. Both these machines have been feeling incredibly slow in regards to general animations of the User Interface. One obvious way to test this is to bring up Exposé, which then turns both my Macs into stuttering slugs. While I can kind of understand why my old MacBook Air would behave like this, there is absolutely no excuse for my iMac to. Talking about this issue with someone at the Apple Store, I was offered an original workaround.

For a while, I suspected the problem to be a software one. After all, my brand new iMac should be able to handle basic animations such as Exposé or quick app switching. But after waiting for Apple to fix this issue, it appears users experiencing sluggish UI animations on Yosemite have to resort to a good old workaround, as shared by one chatty Genius.

Increase Contrast

As it turns out, going to  > System Preferences > Accessibility > Display, and ticking the Increase Contrast box does the trick.

Ever since doing this, both my Macs feel snappy again. Of course, you lose some of the transparency effects so dear to Jony Ive and you have to deal with sharp contrasts, but at least you regain those previous milliseconds of productivity you had lost to stuttering. As someone who spends the vast majority of my days at my computer, this is a sacrifice I am willing to make.

All this could be avoided if Apple deemed necessary to fix this issue that has apparently plagued more than one user. In the meantime, I’ll have to live with less transparency and sharper boarders. But again, it’s a small price to pay to have your $3,000 iMac work the way it should.

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