Google’s iPhone keyboard gets voice dictation, more languages

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Gboard on iPhone.
Gboard just got even better.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

Google’s awesome Gboard keyboard for iPhone finally supports voice dictation. The feature is powered by Google’s own voice recognition technology, and you can access it quickly by holding down the space bar.

This update also brings new emoji, Google Doodles, and support for 15 additional languages.

Pokémon GO players can hunt ‘festive hat’ Pikachu this month

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pokemon-go-birthday-hat-pikachu
Pokémon turns the legal drinking age this month.
Photo: Pokémon GO

In news that makes us feel pretty darn ancient, this month marks 21 years since the first Pokémon game launched in Japan — and Pokémon GO is getting in on the action!

As part of the #PokemonDay celebrations, starting February 26 at 1PM PST and running through the next day, Pokémon GO players will be able to hunt and capture a wild Pikachu adored with “festive party hat.”

In other words, you’d better carve out some free time if you really want to catch ’em all!

iPhone users spend more than ever on apps

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iPhone 7
App spending is on the rise.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

When it comes to buying apps, iPhone users aren’t afraid to bust out their wallets for good software.

Spending on iOS apps increased during 2016, according to the latest data from app analytics firm SensorTower which claims the average iPhone user spends $27 a year just on games.

macOS 10.12.4 beta 3 arrives for devs and public testers

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macOS Sierra is here!
Grab the new macOS beta while it's hot.
Photo: Apple

Developers and members of Apple’s public beta software program can now install the latest beta of macOS 10.12.4 after Apple seeded the new update to testers this morning.

The new beta comes just one day after Apple gave developers a new fresh of software update for iOS 10.3, tvOS 10.2 and watchOS 3.2, bringing a bunch of bug fixes and under the hood improvements.

How much did FBI’s iPhone hack cost taxpayers?

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Hacking the iPhone 5c probably cost the FBI more than $1 million.
Hacking the iPhone 5c probably cost the FBI more than $1 million.
Photo: Apple

The FBI may soon be forced to reveal how much money it spent to hack into the San Bernardino terrorist’s iPhone 5c last year.

FBI Director James Comey told the public that his agency paid “more than I will make in the remainder of this job” to unlock the device after Apple refused to help. Now a group of news organizations have asked a judge to force the government to show exactly how much it cost taxpayers.

Apple seeds new betas for iOS, watchOS and tvOS

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x
iOS 10.3 is full of new features.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

Developers received a fresh new batch of updates from Apple today: the third beta builds for iOS 10.3, watchOS 3.2 and tvOS 10.2.

The new beta builds come two weeks after Apple’s last betas got made available to developers, bringing a host of bug fixes, performance improvements and even some new features and UI changes for iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch and Apple TV.

Slayaway Camp, TwIM, and other awesome apps of the week

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Awesome
'Appy weekend everyone.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

What better way is there to spend a lazy Sunday than by catching up on the best apps you missed over the past week? Fortunately, Cult of Mac has done the leg work for you in selecting what we think are the most important new apps or app updates to arrive over the past seven days.

Check out our picks below. And then get downloading!

Should Apple give iPhone 8 a mini Touch Bar? [Friday Night Fights]

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FNF iPhone 8
Wouldn't you want an iPhone like this?
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

The jury’s still out on whether the MacBook Pro’s new Touch Bar is a useful upgrade or a fancy gimmick. But according to recent rumors, Apple is already planning to bring similar functionality to this year’s iPhone 8.

Friday Night Fights bugTo make this happen, the company would almost certainly have to drop Touch ID. Would a mini Touch Bar be worth the sacrifice, or would contextual shortcuts and buttons make iOS more complicated than it needs to be?

Join us in this week’s Friday Night Fight as we discuss whether a Touch Bar would be a useful addition to the iPhone!