Apple on Tuesday released a preview of iOS 11.3. The software update is set to come with all kinds of new features, like 4 new Animoji for the iPhone X, ARkit 1.5 for developers and more. There are no iPad-only features listed in the preview, but being this is a major release there may be a few included closer to launch, although it is doubtful.
Apple has finally announced that the delayed HomePod will launch on February 9. Pre-orders will open on Friday, January 26 in the US, UK and Australia. The Apple smart speaker will be available in France and Germany this spring. The HomePod will retail for $349 in white and space gray.
Filipe Espósito, Editor-in-Chief at iHelp BR, over the weekend tweeted an image of several new HomePod icons discovered in the latest build of iOS 11.2.5. One icon features a small HomePod next to a muted Siri microphone, suggesting users will be able to mute the the speaker’s “Hey Siri” capabilities. Home app assets also reveal the ability to "create custom scenes" that temporarily disable Siri, according to Espósito.
"The sudden disappearance of an ambitious engineer and his high-society wife provokes the hunt for a precious artefact. The trail leads to the attic of their home, and the discovery of an old, peculiar dollhouse… Explore unsettling locations, follow obscure clues and manipulate bizarre contraptions as you uncover the mysteries within Waldegrave Manor."
Jam City has released a teaser trailer for the new mobile RPG, Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery. The game will be available for both iOS and Android in the spring after making its official debut during “A Celebration of Harry Potter" at Universal Studios Orlando in late January.
Hogwarts Mystery is a story-driven RPG where players can create and play as their own student of the wizarding school. Players can choose their own path as they complete magical classes at Hogwarts, and build their skills to help them solve mysteries and go on adventures. Players can unlock new locations, spells and other magical abilities as they progress through the game.
Apple customers are concerned about the performance of their iPads after it was revealed that the company was slowing down older iPhone models with poorly functioning batteries. In response to the controversy the iPhone-maker released a support document explaining why the throttling was necessary. The document revealed that the iPhone throttling was not a conspiracy, but an attempt by Apple to stop older models from randomly shutting down due to chemically aged batteries. Apple also noted in the document that the "power management feature is specific to iPhone and does not apply to any other Apple products."
This means Apple is not slowing down your iPad.
Apple today released two new commercials featuring the augmented reality and note taking capabilities of the iPad Pro. The first commercial features an iPad Pro user redesigning an outdoor seating area using AR. The YouTube description reads:
"With iPad Pro + iOS 11, you can use augmented reality to literally transform the world around you. Your next computer might not be a computer.".
The second ad includes the same person using the Apple Pencil and GoodNotes 4 to complete a school project on their device.
Nintendo rolled out updates to both Fire Emblem Heroes and Animal Crossing. Fire Emblem received 3 new heroes, Micaiah, Sothe and Zelgiu, a new story called called Guided by a Dream, a new Hero Merit limit, new maps and the ability to check the battle map before battle.
Rover's Garden Safari is a new event running in Animal Crossing until January 22nd. Players can plant and grow special flowers in Rover's garden to attract butterflies and collect special items until the end of the event.
Joining the Rugged Messenger released last summer, Zagg has launched the Rugged Book for the 9.7-inch iPad Pro, the iPad Air, and 2017 iPad. The keyboard case is designed for rugged environments with four layers of stainless steel, polycarbonate and rubber. It meets the “military drop test standard" surviving falls from up to 6 feet 6 inches, and it protects your iPad from corner damage.
Apple has added refurbished 10.5-inch iPad Pro models to its online store in the US and Canada. This is the first time Apple has offered the 10.5-inch iPad as a refurbished model in the US. Currently most models and colors are available in the WiFi-only variant.
The starting price for a refurbished 64GB Wi-Fi model is $549, which $100 less than the normal $649 asking price for a new model. The 265GB refurbished model is available at $679, and the 512GB Wi-Fi version is listed at $849. New models of the same variants will set you back $799 and $999, respectively. At the time of this post, only the 512GB Cellular model is available in all four colors at $959.