All items in the category "iOS"

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How to master Messages in iOS 8

Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

Tons of new features make iOS 8’s Messages app more powerful than ever. Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

I’ve pretty much become a full-time texter these days, using Apple’s Messages app on my Mac and iPhone to send iMessages (to friends and contacts who use iOS or OS X) as well as regular text messages (to people outside the Apple ecosystem).

iOS 8 brings great new changes to the mobile version of the Messages app, some of which might not be immediately apparent. Here’s a look at the new features and how best to use them.

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How to use iOS 8 like a boss

Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Make the most of iOS 8 with these tips and tricks. Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

You don’t need a new iPhone to enjoy the awesome power of iOS 8. Loaded with new features and built-in apps, Apple’s latest mobile OS is its most powerful yet.

As intuitive as it is, there are plenty of tips and tricks that will help you truly get the most out of iOS 8 — even starting before you pull the trigger on the free upgrade. Just in case you don’t feel like reading all 182 pages of Apple’s official iOS 8 user guide, here’s a roundup of Cult of Mac’s most helpful iOS 8 tips and tricks. (We will update this post as we dive deeper into iOS 8 in coming weeks.)

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Unboxed! See the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus in all their gigantic glory

Unboxed! See the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus in all their gigantic glory

It’s like the whole world has iPhone fever today, with folks everywhere standing in one line or another just to get their mitts on a shiny new iPhone 6 or iPhone 6 Plus.

Were you not able to get hold of one? Are you waiting for your shiny new pre-ordered iPhone 6 to arrive at your door? Why not find out what to expect when you get that pristine iPhone 6 Plus box in your hands with our sexy unboxing videos.

We’ve got not just one, but two new videos to get you a peek at the hot new units – click above to see the iPhone 6 Plus with its gloriously large 5.5-inch screen, or below to see the still bigger than big iPhone 6 come out of its box.

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How to start enjoying third-party keyboards in iOS 8

How to start enjoying third-party keyboards in iOS 8

iOS 8 finally gives iPhone users a feature Android owners have long loved: third-party keyboards.

It’s a pretty familiar feature, but unleashing developers so they can create new keyboards for the iPhone (and iPad) is huge — and users being able to enjoy them all is even better.

In today’s Cult of Mac video, we show you how to install third-party keyboards in iOS 8 and introduce you to some of our favorite available custom keyboards. You’ll find out how to wipe to type your messages, give your keyboards themes and much more with this instructional video.

Subscribe to Cult of Mac TV on YouTube to catch all our latest videos.

How to switch to iOS 8’s iCloud Photo Library right now

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[UPDATE: Lots of readers report that the new option to activate iCloud Photo Library isn’t showing up on their devices. I’m looking into it. So far I know that the GM version — the one I used to write this guide —  and the final version are identical, build number 12A365. My guess is that Apple turned off the beta already]

iCloud Photo Library is rad. The idea is that all your full-res photos (including RAW photos) reside on Apple’s servers, and you access them from all your devices.

That’s a change from Photo Stream as it is now, which stores only the last 1,000 photos you took, not your whole collection. Apple has also introduced new tiers of iCloud storage pricing to cope with all your photos (and videos). This is now live, and I signed up for the 200GB option ($4 per month) to test it out.

Let’s take a look.

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iOS 8 gives the Photos app superpowers

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Photos on iOS 8 are so good that you will be able to ditch a whole home-screen folder’s worth of editing and organizing apps. That’s not an exaggeration: Apple’s new mobile OS packs in so many great new features that – even without the extending abilities of iOS 8’s new plug-ins – you can do pretty much any edit right there in the photos app.

The camera, too, has gotten an upgrade, and – maybe the most important for some – so has the iCloud Photo Stream, which will now give access to all your photos, from any device, whenever you want.

Sounds pretty good huh?

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First look: Why you’ll love upgrading to iOS 8

First look: Why you’ll love upgrading to iOS 8

After months of waiting, iOS 8 has finally been released for everyone to download and enjoy. The next generation for Apple’s mobile operating system brings plenty of new features. With an upgraded camera app, a new and intuitive health app and much more, this is sure to be an update you won’t want to forego.

In today’s Cult of Mac video, we give you a quick look at what iOS 8 has to offer. Install the new software and take advantage of a number of useful tweaks and enhancements.

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Planet Hop is the most masochistic fun you’ve had since Flappy Bird

Pic courtesy Retro Dreamer

Simple, yet compellingly brutal. Picture courtesy Retro Dreamer

There’s something incredibly compelling about a mobile game with simple mechanics and a maddeningly frustrating success rate. If you’ve played Flappy Bird or one of the several clones out there, you know exactly what that means.

Gavin Bowman, an indie developer and co-founder of Retro Dreamer, wanted to make a game that he could reasonably finish within one weekend, as part of a “game jam” called Ludum Dare, the theme of which was “connected worlds.”

“I was trying to come up with something for the game jam that I could definitely finish,” Bowman tells Cult of Mac. “So I had to keep the art and mechanic fairly simple to have it be releasably finished versus game jam finished.”

The result is a one-tap wonder of a little game that has you tapping your iPhone (or iPad) screen to send a little sphere off one planet to another that’s spinning around it, like planets and moons tend to do. When you find just the right timing for your tap, the success feels glorious, but when you miss, well, let’s say the f-bomb comes into play quite a bit.

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Celebrity nudes, iPhone 6 event details and the rest of this week’s hottest Apple news

Celebrity nudes, iPhone 6 event details and the rest of this week’s hottest Apple news

Trusting the Internet can be one of the silliest things you can do, especially when it comes to private matters. While what you do within the comfort of your own circle deserves to stay within its parameters, sometimes things don’t play that way.

Some celebrities found that out the hard way this week when their “personal” photos were hacked from their iCloud accounts and leaked online. With the world frantically sharing the photos left and right, this has turned all eyes toward Apple and the security of its cloud operation.

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5 things Apple needs to fix before releasing iOS 8

5 things Apple needs to fix before releasing iOS 8

Throughout the summer I’ve been fortunate enough to follow iOS 8 through its beta versions. Every update is better than the last, but still iOS 8 could be better. With Apple’s big reveal just days away, the world is hoping for new products — but we can’t forget the software they’ll be running.

In today’s video, I’ll run down the top five things I’d like to see Apple add to iOS 8 to put it over the top. A better Control Center is just one of the items on my wishlist.

Subscribe to Cult of Mac TV on YouTube to catch all our latest videos.