Apple explores handy gesture controls for iPhone, Apple Watch

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Apple Watch Series 4 Workout 3
Apple proposes a way for you to control your Apple Watch through wrist movements.
Photo: Leander Kahney/Cult of Mac

Apple is looking into making your iPhone smart enough to know you wanted to take a picture just because you aimed the camera at something.

And that’s not the only gesture it’s investigating. The company proposed a complex system to let users control their Apple Watch with wrist movements, with no need to touch the screen.

GoodNotes 5 improves the notes app in every way

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GoodNotes 5 finally gets app-wide handwriting search.
GoodNotes 5 finally gets app-wide handwriting search.
Photo: GoodNotes

GoodNotes is one of the most popular notes app on iOS, and the Mac. and with good reason. It combines a great PDF viewer with a free form notes app, and mixes the two together. This week, GoodNotes 5 launched, an entirely new app (with upgrade pricing for users of the old app) that blows out the dust, and the olde-timey app UI in favor of a clean and organized view.

Apple vies for J.J. Abrams’ Bad Robot shingle

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Bad Robot
J.J. Abrams has studio pitches on his mind.
Photo: Joi/Wikimedia Commons

Apple looks like the competitive underdog in a field of entertainment’s heavy-hitters vying to be the new home for J.J. Abrams and his company, Bad Robot.

Abrams, the director of the last two Star Wars films, is set to part with Paramount, creating a bidding war among studios, including major players Disney, Universal and Warner Bros.

X-Men writer preps new sci-fi show for Apple TV

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Simon Kinberg both wrote and directed X-Men: Dark Phoenix.
Simon Kinberg both wrote and directed X-Men: Dark Phoenix.
Photo: Cult of Mac/20th Century Fox

Apple has reportedly approved a 10-episode sci-fi series co-created by Simon Kinberg, who has written many of the X-Men movies going back to 2006. This show will apparently be part of the streaming video service Apple is expected to launch this year.

Not much is known about Kinberg’s latest creation yet, though it’s scheduled to start filming this summer.

Top 40 tips that make you love the Touch Bar

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You got the touch. Here's how to master your MacBook Pro’s Touch Bar.
You got the touch. Here's how to master your MacBook Pro’s Touch Bar.
Photo: Graham Bower/Cult of Mac

The Touch Bar is one of Apple’s most controversial innovations of recent years. Located inconspicuously at the top of the MacBook Pro keyboard, where the function keys used to sit, some users ignore it altogether. Others actively hate it.

For pro users, like software developers, the lack of a physical escape key and function keys can be a real pain. And the Touch Bar’s touch-sensitivity makes it all too easy to trigger Siri by accident when you aim for the delete key.

But love it or loathe it, we’re stuck with the Touch Bar. Apple includes it on all its high-end laptops, without even offering function keys as a built-to-order option. So we might as well learn how to get the most out of it.

The good news is that once you get in touch with your Touch Bar, it turns out to have some genuinely useful time-saving features. Especially if you use apps that support it, like Adobe Photoshop and Microsoft Office. Here are my top 40 Touch Bar tips.

First HomeKit-enabled video doorbell gets launch date

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ProLine
The industrial finish on the ProLine doorbell is gorgeous.
Photo: Robin Telecom Development

The first HomeKit-compatible video doorbell finally has a launch date in the USA, giving iPhone lovers an alternative to Amazon’s Ring doorbell and Nest Cam from Google.

Robin Telecom Development — a tech hardware company from the Netherlands — revealed today that its ProLine Doorbell will launch in over 50 countries on January 31, but people in the USA and Canada will have to wait until February 28.

Teen golf phenom lands in rough over Apple Watch ad

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golfer Lucy Li
Lucy Li's appearance in an Apple Watch ad may force her to turn pro.
Screen shot: Apple/YouTube

A teen-aged golf prodigy could lose her amateur status after she appeared in a 15-second video for the Apple Watch.

Lucy Li, 16, is ranked ninth among the world’s women’s amateurs. The United States Golf Association could revoke her status as early as next week – even though, according to her mother, she received no compensation for appearing in the ad.

2019 iPhone XR might get a big cellular speed upgrade

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iPhone XR giveaway: Enter to win this gorgeous blue iPhone.
The 2019 iPhone XR might offer even better 4G performance than the original one.
Photo: Kristal Chan/Cult of Mac

The next version of the iPhone XR could offer significantly faster cellular connections than the current one, according to industry analysts. That’s because the new model is supposedly getting 4×4 MIMO — the iPhone XS series are currently the only Apple devices with this speedy tech.

Stroke-detection could be Apple Watch’s next big thing

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Apple Watch Series 4 redesigned heart-rate monitor
The Apple Watch is a medical game changer.
Photo: Leander Kahney/Cult of Mac

The Apple Watch is already saving lives, but it could turn out to be even more of a powerful tool if the results of new research turns out positive.

For the study, Apple teamed up with pharmaceutical company Johnson & Johnson to establish whether the Apple Watch — in conjunction with a new app — could help diagnose one of the leading causes of strokes.