| Cult of Mac

Music streamer Tidal adds Siri support (but not for HomePods)


Tidal finally added Siri support, but not for your HomePod or HomePod mini.
Tidal finally added Siri support, but not for your HomePod or HomePod mini.
Photo: Tidal

Music streaming service Tidal rolled out its long-awaited Siri integration Wednesday. Subscribers can ask Apple’s voice assistant to play songs, playlists, albums and more on the platform.

That’s great if you play music on an iPhone, iPad or Mac. But the Siri integration with Tidal doesn’t extend to HomePod or HomePod mini, unfortunately.

There’s no downgrading if you’ve already upgraded to iOS 14.5


iOS 14.5 brings App Tracking Transparency, mask-friendly Face ID
Don't think about turning back.
Photo: Apple

Apple has stopped signing iOS 14.4.2 and iPadOS 14.4.2. That means that it’s no longer possible to downgrade if you’ve upgraded to iOS or iPadOS 14.5.

The eagerly anticipated iOS 14.5 was a big iOS update for Apple. It introduced the ability to unlock an iPhone using an Apple Watch while wearing a mask, along with the controversial App Tracking Transparency feature, new emojis and Siri voices, a Podcasts app update, and more.

iOS 14.5.1 update fixes App Tracking Transparency bug


App Tracking Transparency is iOS 14.5's controversial new privacy-related feature.
Today's update fixes a bug that kept App Tracking Transparency from working properly for some users.
Screenshot: Apple

Apple rushed out iOS 14.5.1 on Monday, an update that fixes a bug in the App Tracking Transparency feature rolled out a week ago.

“This update fixes an issue with App Tracking Transparency where some users who previously disabled Allow Apps to Request to Track in Settings may not receive prompts from apps after re-enabling it,” Apple’s release notes said. “This update also provides important security updates and is recommended for all users.”

iPadOS 14.5.1, a version of the software for iPad users, also arrived Monday.

How to stop apps from tracking you in iOS 14.5


How to allow/prevent apps tracking you
Thanks to App Tracking Transparency in iOS 14.5, it’s up to your to decide whether third-party applications track you.
Graphic: Cult of Mac

iPhone and iPad just got a significant new privacy protection, preventing third-party apps from tracking you without permission. App Tracking Transparency debuted in iOS 14.5 and iPadOS 14.5.

Here’s how to use it. And what to do about all the popups asking, “Allow [THIS APP] to track your activity?”

iOS 14.5 brings App Tracking Transparency, mask-friendly Face ID


iOS 14.5 brings App Tracking Transparency, mask-friendly Face ID
Starting with iOS 14.5, iPhone owners can use their Apple Watch to securely unlock their handset when attempting to use Face ID while wearing a face mask.
Photo: Apple

Apple on Monday gave all iPhone users access to iOS 14.5. And iPad users can install iPadOS 14.5  Today’s updates bring a ton of new features, including unlocking an iPhone with an Apple Watch while wearing a mask.

The OS updates also bring App Tracking Transparency, a controversial change that makes it harder for apps to track users for targeted advertising. Other upgrades include new emoji, fresh Siri voices, additional features for Apple’s news and map apps, support for the just-announced AirTag trackers and a wholesale redesign of the Podcasts app.

watchOS 7.4, which is necessary for the new mask-friendly Face ID feature, and tvOS 14.5 also became available today, along with macOS Big Sur 11.3.

Apple betas offer clues about new hardware coming soon


iMac 2021
Is this the face of the new iMacs?
Photo: Jon Prosser/FrontPageTech

Apple’s new betas are, by definition, a glimpse at the future when it comes to Apple’s upcoming releases — and the latest crop is no different. From new iMacs to a possible controller redesign for Apple TV, here are some of the hardware breadcrumbs they drop about future Apple plans.