The most notable news item from Apple last week was the company's announcement of its Spring Forward event. Invitations for the media event were sent out on Thursday. It will be held at 9 AM PT on Monday, March 9, at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco. It is widely expected that Apple will unveil new details about the Apple Watch such as cost, battery life and whether or not it is waterproof; and announce an official launch date for the highly anticipated wearable.
Though it wasn't directly Apple related, another big story from last week that affects everybody (more so in the U.S.), was the FCC's Thursday vote to enforce net neutrality. Service providers will be regulated as "common carriers" under the Communications Act, which means that they will not be allowed to speed up
Apple has officially opened the iWork suite of productivity software to anyone with an updated web browser. Ownership of a Mac or iOS device is not required to create an iCloud account. Once the user has an Apple ID, the web-based versions of Pages, Numbers and Keynote are free along with 1GB of iCloud storage to save related files.
iWork for iCloud was first launched in 2013 for beta testing, and later extended to all users with an Apple ID. Creating an Apple ID at www.icloud.com is as simple as clicking the text "Create one now" at the bottom of the sign in page. Users will need to enter a name, email address, date of birth and security questions for password protection.
Android Wear devices such as the Moto 360 aren't known for their compatibility with the iPhone. This could all change in the future, thanks in no small part to developer @MohammadAG. In a proof of concept, he was able to successfully display notifications on the Moto 360 directly from an iPhone.
What's more, the iPhone does not have to be jailbroken to make this work. The process utilizes Apple Notification Center Service (ANCS), which makes iOS notifications accessible to third-party accessories via Bluetooth. One example of a smartwatch that already uses this method to display iPhone notifications is the Pebble Watch.
Dropbox for iOS has recently received useful new features in version 3.7 on the iTunes Store. The ubiquitous cloud storage solution provides access to photos and documents from any compatible iOS device. Now the Dropbox app includes an Action Extension for iOS 8, which allows the user to save files directly to Dropbox from a standard app share sheet.
In order to use the Dropbox extension, toggle the Dropbox extension by navigating to the More menu from a share sheet. Once enabled, the Save to Dropbox button will appear automatically. Tapping this button will open the Dropbox dialog, which makes it possible to name the file and save to a location in your Dropbox folder. Files will upload to the cloud after tapping Save.
Here are this week's most noteworthy games, apps and jailbreak tweaks released to the App Store and Cydia through 02/22/15 to 02/28/15. Apple's Free App of the Week is Printer Pro. The app will be free on the Apple App Store until 02/05/15. Don't forget to follow us on Twitter and Facebook to keep updated on all the latest iPhone and iPad news.
iOS device owners continue to install iOS 8, with the adoption rate inching up every two weeks. The recent total stood at 73 percent according to the Apple Developer Support page. While this is a one point bump from the stat measured two weeks prior, the number still lags behind iOS 7 adoption. Mid-February numbers for iOS 7 indicated that 80 percent of compatible iOS devices were running the latest firmware last year.
In any case, Apple is set to launch several iOS updates over the coming months. iOS 8.2 will be released in early March, and will primarily focus on the Apple Watch management app and WatchKit for developers. A March 9 Apple media event is expected to highlight the Apple Watch and announce ship dates for the wearable device. Shortly after the event, Apple is expected to launch the first-ever iOS public beta program with iOS 8.3.
The jailbreak tweak Stratos is heavily inspired by the classic multitasking tweak Auxo. The developers of Stratos have included some interesting features in their vision of iOS 7 and 8 multitasking. The tweak is described as a way to "simplify the way you interact with your iPhone". Simply put, Stratos brings a multitasking app switcher to the Control Center and separates media controls, app switching, and control toggles into three separate pages.
Once installed, there is a toggle to enable Stratos under Settings, along with many options to configure the tweak. Besides displaying running and recently used app cards directly in the Control Center, Stratos makes it possible to swipe up on an app card to open it immediately. Stratos can be configured to automatically open to the media control page when music is playing, and this is just the tip of the iceberg.
Apple will soon cease support for signing into the iTunes Store with AOL screen names. Those wishing to continue using iTunes or access previous purchases must convert their AOL sign in information into an Apple ID. The change will take effect on March 30, after which Apple will not provide support for AOL Username accounts.
iTunes users needing to convert to an Apple ID can sign in normally with their AOL screen name, and Apple will automatically ask to make the conversion. Once the process is complete, the Apple ID will retain access to all previous content purchased with the AOL Username in the iTunes Store, App Store, and iBooks Store. No other AOL services connected to the AOL screen name will be affected.
Apple on Thursday sent out invites to select members of the media for an unspecified event to be held on March 9, 2015. The press conference will be held in San Francisco at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts. The invitation reads: "Spring forward".
Apple is expected to announce more details about the Apple Watch, which it unveiled during its September iPhone keynote. There are still a lot of unanswered questions about Apple's wearable device, such as pricing and battery life. Some have speculated that the 18-karat gold Apple Watch Edition could cost upwards of $5,000.
The developers behind Ultimate Robot Fighting have teamed up with DreamWorks to release Real Steel Champions based on the movie franchise starring Hugh Jackman. The new title is part of a series of games with over 50 million users worldwide.
Real Steel Champions will be the first game in the series that allows players to build their own robots and train them to battle in 10 new arenas. Players will be able to to design their own robot using various parts including heads, torsos, legs and arms from fan favorites such as Atom, Zeus, Noisy Boy, Midas and Metro. The game will also feature a Tournament mode, boss battles, 30 challenges, a Free Sparing mode and more.