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watchOS 4.1 brings LTE Apple Music streaming, GymKit support & more

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Kevin Lynch watchOS 4 Keynote

Apple has seeded the public build of watchOS 4.1. The update brings in some big new additions for Apple Watch Series 3, and fixes for the original watch.

As with every major software update on the planet, watchOS 4.1 comes along new features as well as bug fixes and performance improvements. Features announced during Apple Watch Series 3 keynote are now available through this update.

watchOS 4.1 Software Update

With watchOS 4.1, LTE streaming for Apple Music and iCloud Music Library is now possible. There’s a new Radio app bundled that lets Series 3 wearers listen to Beats 1 and other stations on Apple Music.

For more accurate and easy measure, watchOS 4.1 has support for GymKit as well. The feature allows to sync fitness data with GymKit-enabled equipments.

watchOS 4.1 Full Changelog

  • Stream music on Apple Watch Series 3 with Apple Music or iCloud Music Library
  • Listen to live radio on Beats 1, custom stations, and expert-curated stations with the new Radio app on Apple Watch Series 3
  • Use Siri to find, discover, and play songs, playlists, or albums
  • Sync fitness data with GymKit-enabled treadmills, ellipticals, stair steppers, and indoor bikes for more accurate distance, pace, and energy burn metrics
  • Ability to disconnect from a Wi-Fi network in Control Center for Apple Watch Series 3 (GPS + Cellular)
  • Fixes an issue for Apple Watch Series 1 and later where Heart Rate notifications were delivered when the feature was not enabled
  • Fixes an issue where some users did not receive Stand Reminders
  • Resolves an issue where the current Stand hour indicator did not appeal for some users
  • Resolves an issue that was caused haptics to not be delivered for silent alarms
  • Addresses an issue that prevented Apple Watch (1st generation) from charging for some
  • Resolves an issue where the Sunrise / Sunset complication would sometimes not appear
  • Restores Mandarin as the default dictation language for China

Apple Watch wearers can grab the watchOS 4.1 update via the Watch app for iOS. Make sure you have at least 50-percent battery and the wearable is connected to a power source while updating to watchOS 4.1.

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Apps & Software

Twitter removes its official Mac app from the App Store

Twitter just killed off its official Mac app, ends support in a month.

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Twitter Social Media

Like the Twitter app on your macOS? Well, today’s news isn’t a good one for you, if your answer is yes. Twitter has pulled off the official Twitter for Mac app from the Mac App Store today.

In a tweet pushed from Twitter Support, the micro-blogging site announced that “starting today the Twitter for Mac app will no longer be available for download.” What appears to be the reason for the sudden demise of the Twitter for Mac app is the company’s efforts to provide a great Twitter experience that’s consistent across platforms. Simply put, use Twitter in your browser!

While this is for sure to make many Twitter users feel sad as the macOS client offered way better features over the browser version of Twitter, the move also means that we will be seeing improvements in the web version of the platform. Twitter for Mac will continue to have support for 30 more days, and after that, you won’t be able to use it at all.

“For the full Twitter experience on Mac, visit Twitter on web,” says Twitter.

Alternatives like Tweetbot and Tweeterific from third-party developers are a better option rather than using Twitter on the web. It comes at a cost though, unlike the official Twitter for Mac app.

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Google Maps for iOS adds one-tap access to commute information

The features arrived on Android last year.

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Google Maps for iOS update

Google has updated its Maps app for iOS. The latest release of Google Maps for iOS offers real-time commute information, with a three-sectioned bar at the bottom of the screen. Finding nearby restaurants and hotels, real-time traffic data, and transit information are now easier than ever.

Swipe up from the bottom of the screen, and you’ll see three different tabs aligned together: Explore, Driving, and Transit. The very first, as the name suggests, helps you find nearby places for restaurants and hotels, while the latter two provide you with real-time traffic details and transit information, respectively.

Whether we like it or not, sometimes life just flies by. And in the moment, every minute counts. Just one minute can be the difference between catching the last train or walking home in the rain. Or getting to that new restaurant in time to snag the last table.

The company brought the same set of features on Android last year. It’s good to see the handy one-tap feature making its way to millions of iOS users, a year later though. Google Maps is available on the App Store for free, grab the latest update now!

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Microsoft Cortana now available on iPad

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Microsoft Cortana iPad

Microsoft has released Cortana for iPad. Cortana makes its iPad debut eight months after the smart assistant was available on iPhone last year. The iPad counterpart features a brand-new design for the larger screen with a much faster experience.

The Cortana digital assistant from Microsoft isn’t quite like Alexa or the Google Assistant, much like Siri, but is a Microsoft alternative for Siri — with enough limitations, thanks iOS. You can’t configure to replace Siri with Cortana (or any other assistant) on your iOS device, however.

The human interface is same as the iPhone counterpart, but with an interface optimized for larger screens and looks perfect on the iPad Pro line-up. Furthermore, the app now launches 20 percent faster on iOS devices.

Cortana can help you schedule appointments, set reminders, answer questions, alongside third-party integration with services like Netflix and Spotify. Microsoft Cortana is available on the App Store for free.

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