Apple’s upcoming lineup: new iPhones and more!

Apple has quite a few new toys in store for us later this year. New iPads, MacBooks, accessories and most notably, the new iPhone X range. It will consist of three brand new iPhones modelled after last year’s innovative new iPhone X. We’re here to cover all of Apple’s upcoming new products to get you excited!

 

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6.5″ OLED iPhone

Dubbed the ‘iPhone X Plus’, this will be the biggest addition yet to the iPhone family. Based on the original iPhone X’s near bezel-less design but about the size of the iPhone 8 Plus, this new iPhone will offer the largest display of any other iPhone. There’s been talk of it stepping up the iPhone’s photography capabilities by implementing a triple rear-camera. There’s also evidence that this will come with dual-sim capability.

If you want only the most advanced iPhone, this is going to be your pick!

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5.8″ OLED iPhone

The successor to the iPhone X, we can expect this phone to be an upgraded version to the original. There’s also a rumour that this and the 6.5″ model will be available in a new Gold colour in addition to the original iPhone X’s Space Grey and Silver.

The smaller size does mean it won’t quite be on par with the 6.5″ OLED, but make no mistake. This is going to be one impressive new iPhone!

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6.1″ LCD iPhone

With slightly thicker bezels, an LCD screen rather than OLED, a single rear camera and no 3D Touch, this iPhone isn’t as impressive as the two above, yet it’s expected to outsell both of them. The reason is the price tag. These factors have set up this iPhone to be much more affordable. An aluminium chassis rather than steel is another difference that has allowed Apple to reduce costs when manufacturing this iPhone.

As for colours, this model may be available in a very different set of options: Gray, White, Blue, Red and Orange.

It still comes with Face ID and in the iPhone X style, so if you’re not after all the bells and whistles and looking to save a dollar, this’ll be the one for you!

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Apple’s other new products:

  • 11” and 12.9” iPad Pro (supporting Face ID)
  • New MacBook
  • Mac Mini
  • iMac (CPU upgrades)
  • New low-price notebook model
  • New 1.57” and 1.78” Apple Watch
  • New AirPods and AirPower

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How to maximise your iPhone/iPad battery life

Our iPhones or iPads never seem to last quite as long as we want them to before they need charging, and as they get older, their capacity to hold a charge drops. Fortunately, we’re here to help with some easy tips on how to make your battery last longer before it needs charging again, and before it eventually needs replacing.

ios11-iphone8-settings-general-software-update-on-tapAre you using the latest updated software?

Apple are periodically updating iOS, the software that runs your iPhone/iPad. Often those updates can include better power-management, helping your battery last longer.

To make sure you’re using the latest version of iOS, you’ll first need to be connected to a reliable source of Wifi and have your iPhone/iPad on charge. Tap Settings > General > Software Update. Then choose when you want your device to update.

Avoid extreme temperatures & remove case while charging

Your iPhone/iPad’s battery will perform best in temperatures between 16° C to 22° C. Any hotter than 35° C can cause damage to your battery, shortening its lifespan. It’s also a good idea to take off bulkier cases while charging, as they can trap the excess heat causing your iPhone/iPad to get hot. Colder temperatures won’t cause any damage to the battery, but you may notice a temporary drop in battery life at the time.

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Find out where your power is being used

Some apps and services are greedier than others when it comes to your iPhone/iPad’s power usage. Opening Settings > Battery will show you what’s using the most juice and might give you some ideas on which apps you could use less or which need closing.

To stop apps running in the background altogether, tap Settings > General > Background App Refresh and turn it off.

battery.pngLow Power Mode

When your iPhone/iPad drops to 20% battery life (and again at 10%) it will ask if you want to turn on Low Power Mode, which automatically conserves power through a number of methods such as adjusting screen brightness, optimising device performance and disabling animations. This can make all the difference, helping that last bit of juice carry you to the end of the day.

However you can actually turn on Low Power Mode whenever you want, even when your battery is above 20%, making your iPhone/iPad last that much longer. To do so, just go into Settings > Battery.

Other useful tips:

  • When storing your device for a long period of time, drain the battery to about half and make sure it’s powered off. Keep it in a cool, moisture-free environment and re-charge to 50% every 6 months.
  • Lower your screen brightness in the Control Panel, or turn on Auto-Brightness under Settings > General > Accessibility > Display Accommodations.
  • Turn off Location Services for certain (or all) Apps by tapping Settings > Privacy > Location Services to stop your iPhone/iPad using up power on unnecessary location tracking
  • Disable Push Notifications for certain (or all) Apps under Settings > Notifications to stop apps from constantly waking up your iPhone/iPad and using power
  • When in areas with weak or no signal, turn on Airplane Mode in the Control Center and your iPhone/iPad won’t waste power trying to search for reception
  • Make sure you are using a genuine Apple Lightning Cable when charging to ensure the best possible charge and to prevent potential damage caused by third-party chargers

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New iPhone X Rumours: iPhone X ‘Plus’ & ‘Budget’ iPhone X

3 new iPhones are currently in the pipeline, due to release later this year. Each are a variation of last year’s groundbreaking iPhone X, including a revamped iPhone X, a bigger iPhone X ‘Plus’ as well as a more affordable ‘budget’ iPhone X. There had been talk of a smaller option modelled after the iPhone SE, however it appears that idea has been shelved for the time being. Here’s everything we know about the new additions to the upcoming iPhone X line-up: the iPhone X ‘Plus’ and the ‘Budget’ iPhone X.

iPhone X ‘Plus’

Set to have the biggest display on an iPhone yet as well as talk of a whole new set of bells and whistles including a triple-camera and dual-sim capability, this is looking to be a truly impressive smartphone.

Physically it’ll be about the same size as the iPhone 8 Plus, which had a display of 5.5 inches. However because this model retains the iPhone X’s near-bezel-less design, it’ll have a much bigger display of 6.4 inches.

Huawei was first to the party with the triple-camera technology with the P20 Pro and it is truly impressive. Now that Apple is apparently jumping on the bandwagon, we can expect the iPhone X Plus to easily be a top competitor for the best smartphone camera.

As for colour choices, it’s expected to be available in the standard Silver and Space Grey options. However there has also been much excitement around a new Gold colour.

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‘Budget’ iPhone X

This model will feature a cheaper 6.1-inch LCD display instead of an OLED screen like on the current iPhone X. An LCD screen doesn’t offer the same image quality as OLED and may use more power, but it does mean this model will be less expensive.

Other ways Apple is expected to cut costs to make this model more affordable are:

  • single rear camera
  • lack of 3D Touch
  • less investment in performance
  • slightly thicker bezels
  • aluminium chassis (unlike the current iPhone X’s steel chassis)

This iPhone may be available in as many as 5 different colours: Gray, White, Blue, Red and Orange.

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Fast Charging Cable

On top of all this, there’s evidence that Apple plans on scrapping their traditional Lightning to USB Cable in favour of their new fast charging Lightning Cable. These new cables are expected to come with the new iPhone models, meaning users will get fast charging straight out of the box.

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Are you ready for the iOS 12 iPhone & iPad update?

iOS 12, the latest update to Apple devices, is coming this Autumn, and it’s not just for the new iPhones and iPads. Even users of older models such as iOS 12 the iPhone 5s and iPad Mini 2 will see the benefits from the new update. So let’s get right into it and see what goodies Apple has in store for us!

It’s Faster!

Performance is the key thing Apple has been raving about with iOS 12, and those with access to the beta version have confirmed it’s not just talk. iOS 12 has been optimised to open apps faster, power on quicker and reduce lag. To give you some numbers, Apple boasts up to 70% swipe to camera, up to 50% faster keyboard display and up to 2x faster app launch under heavy workload. Owners of older iPhone/iPad models in particular may have previously noticed their device starting to slow down. Well this one’s for you!

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Augmented Reality

AR just keeps getting better and better and iOS 12 supports all the latest AR capabilities. The big new feature here is being able to send your friends AR objects in Messages and Mail, who can then view it in real world. ARKit2 also lets developers create better and more immersive AR experiences, so you can expect AR to continue to evolve. There’s even a new app called Measure which uses your device’s camera to measure real world objects.

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Monitor and control device usage

Screen Time is a new feature which tracks how much time you spend on your device and specific apps. It also allows you to put a cap on that time spent, which can be useful for limiting kids’ screen time or for those who have a bad habit of spending too much time on their favourite apps!

screen time

Other Features Include:

  • FaceTime support with up to 32 people at once
  • Memoji: a customisable Animoji just for you!
  • 4 new Animoji: Koala, Ghost, Tiger and T-Rex
  • New camera effects
  • Better notification management
  • Scheduling for Do Not Disturb mode
  • The new For You tab is an intelligent way to share your best photos
  • An optimised Photo Search engine
  • Siri Shortcuts to your favourite apps
  • Improved privacy

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6 tips to maximise Samsung Galaxy S9/9+ battery life

Samsung’s new Galaxy S9 and S9+ didn’t come with any improvements to the battery over last year’s models, so you may find yourself wanting more out of your phone’s battery. Here are 5 easy ways to make your Galaxy S9/S9+ last longer.

Change Display options

If you’re willing to sacrifice some display features, you can save quite a bit of battery life. First open Settings > Display where you’ll be able to adjust the screen Brightness, Screen resolution and Screen timeout. The lower you set them, the more power you’ll save. It’s also a good idea to turn off Auto brightness.

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Disable ‘Always On Display’

With ‘Always On Display’ turned on, your phone will constantly display the clock, calendar and any notifications and alerts. While convenient, it does sip away at your battery. To instead turn off your screen when you’re not using it and save a bit of battery life, go to Settings > Lock Screen & Security > Always On Display > and switch it to OFF.

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Isolate the problem

If your battery is draining faster than normal, there’s probably a particular app (or apps) that’s responsible. Find out how much power each app is using by going to System > Device maintenance > Battery. Here you can also use Save power to clear all apps running in the background.

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Uninstall/Disable unused Apps

New phones come packed with various features and bloatware that you’ll probably never even use, yet will still eat up their fair share of the battery. For any apps you aren’t using, hold down on the app’s icon and hit either Disable or Uninstall if you’re given the option.

‘OPTIMIZE NOW’

The Galaxy S9/S9+ has a feature that will automatically find ways to save power, improve performance and free up space. To use it, go to Settings > Device Maintenance Optimize and hit OPTIMIZE NOW.

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Power saving mode

If things get desperate, there’s always power saving mode. This disables certain features and limits performance in order to conserve battery life. Go to Settings > Device Maintenance > Battery and choose between Mid (Medium power saving mode) or Max (Maximum power saving mode). Medium power saving mode will still give you access to all of your apps, while Maximum power saving mode only leaves you with your phone’s most basic functions.

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The New iMac 2017

This year’s new range of iMacs are very impressive with even more to come in the iMac Pro at the end of this year! So let’s dive right in and take a look at what makes Apple’s latest range of desktop computers so good.

 

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The 21.5 inch model (Left) alongside the 27 inch model (Right)

Design & Display

If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Apple’s stayed true to the same steel and glass design for the last 5 years, and that’s probably a good thing. It’s simple, yet sleek and aesthetically pleasing. But while it may look like its predecessors, the iMac 2017 has really kicked it up a notch since the previous iMac 2015. The 21.5 inch model comes with either Full HD display or 4K Retina Display if you’re willing to pay a little extra. The 27 inch model has an even more impressive 5K Retina Display and matches the quality of screens used in film production.

Features & Hardware

On the back you’ve got 3 USB ports, 2 Thunderbolt ports, an SDXC card slot and (thankfully) a headphone jack! All models come with a standard HD FaceTime 1.2-megapixel camera as well as the ability to run VR. Performance specs vary depending on what you get, but all models feature the latest in Kaby Lake Processors. If you go all out you can get a massive 2 TB SSD with 64 GB of RAM on the 27 inch model! That’s a very fast computer with so much storage space you wouldn’t know what to do with it all!

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So what can this new iMac do? Well it’ll soon be running macOS High Sierra, Apple’s newest computer operating system set to launch later this year. It brings many improvements to the table. Coupled with a massive storage space, it can hold tonnes of movies, photos, songs or any kind of media and files, making it perfect for work or just as a personal computer. And for gaming enthusiasts, the iMac’s top of the range graphics, lightning fast performance and VR capabilities makes it perfect for that too. A better question to ask might be: what can’t this new iMac do?

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iPhone 8/8 Plus: What’s the Verdict?

The iPhone 8 and 8 Plus, Apple’s latest addition to its line of smartphones, has been released! But with the iPhone X just around the corner, is it worthwhile? The iPhone 8/8 Plus is a significantly less expensive alternative to the X but with many of the same new features and is a cut above the iPhone 7. So if you’re considering an upgrade, we’re here to fill you in on all the details for Apple’s latest iPhone release.

Fantastic Camera

The iPhone 8 takes amazing pictures, despite having the same 12 MP sensor in the back as its predecessor. Like the 7 Plus, the 8 Plus has a dual camera and both models have 7 MP front cameras. So what’s changed? Namely the faster processor, which has improved the iPhone’s ability to take pictures on the move and make them sharper and clearer. There are also several new things you can do with the iPhone 8’s camera, including being able to shoot 4K video at 60 frames per second!

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iOS 11, Apple’s Latest Operating System

The iPhone 8 comes fully equipped with iOS 11 and all of its new features, so expect to see an improved user interface, new fonts and Augmented Reality (AR) capability.

It’s Fast!

With the same powerful A11 processor as the iPhone X, this is one speedy phone! The better processor not only improves speed, but other areas of the phone such as the camera.

Wireless Charging

That’s right, since the iPhone 8 is sporting a sleek glass back, you don’t even need to plug it in to charge it! Just place it on the charging pad and let it do its thing. While we’re on the subject, the iPhone 8 Plus actually has the highest battery life of the three new models, better than the iPhone X!

wireless charging

The iPhone 8 isn’t a huge step up from the 7, but it does have some notable improvements. So if you haven’t upgraded in a while and the iPhone X is looking a bit pricey, the iPhone 8 or 8 Plus could be for you!

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Safely Restore Your iPhone Quick and Easy

Problem with your iPhone? Nothing seems to help? When we’ve exhausted all our other options, it’s time to bite the bullet and perform a factory reset. This will restore your iPhone back to factory settings when it was brand new, before it had any problems. The downside is that it will also erase everything you have stored on your iPhone, but if you do it right you’ll be able to get it all back in a snap. Just follow our simple guide on how to factory reset your phone the right way.

  • Step 1: Connect to iTunes

You’ll need a computer to do this. First open up iTunes and connect your iPhone to your computer. Follow any onscreen steps and select your iPhone on iTunes. You may be asked for your passcode. If you’ve forgotten your passcode, try a computer you’ve already connected to before. You can still go ahead without a passcode by force restarting your iPhone, but you won’t be able to create a backup.

  • Step 2: Backup Everything!

This step is optional, but definitely important if you value the contacts, photos and other files stored on your phone. On iTunes under Backups, select This Computer and click ‘Back Up Now’.

Backup

  • Step 3: Restore your iPhone

In the Summary panel on iTunes, find your iPhone and click Restore iPhone. Click Restore once again to begin the process. Your iPhone will be restored to factory settings and hopefully good as new!

Restore

  • Step 4: Set-Up your iPhone

If you created a backup, find your iPhone in iTunes and click Restore Backup. Select the most recent backup and click Restore. If you’re starting from scratch instead, disconnect your iPhone from your computer. Turn it on and follow the onscreen instructions.

backup restore

A factory reset can help solve a number of common problems that iPhone users encounter, from a glitchy/unresponsive touchscreen, to camera issues. It’s a last resort, but often a factory reset will fix the issue with your iPhone if nothing else seems to be working. A factory reset is also a good idea if you’re planning on selling your iPhone or passing it on to someone else.

If you’re still encountering problems with your iPhone, why not let us take a look at it? Just give us a call, e-mail us or visit us at our store!

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Apple’s Family Sharing Connects You Like Never Before

If your family have multiple Apple devices between you, you need to know about Family Sharing. Even if it’s just the two of you each with an iPhone, you can still certainly benefit from Family Sharing. Apple’s Family Sharing service links up to 6 Apple IDs to share anything from iTunes purchases to iCloud storage, so you needn’t worry about managing shared accounts. Not only can it help save you money, but Family Sharing will also help your family stay organised, keep you safer and bring you all closer together. We’ll tell you how it works and how you can utilise it to make life easier for you and your family.

How To Set Up Family Sharing

First choose the Family Organiser, that is an adult in the family who will be responsible for the family group and their purchases. Then have them follow these simple steps on their Apple device.

  • On iPhone/iPad: Tap Settings > [Your Apple ID] > Set Up Family Sharing > Get Started and follow the onscreen instructions.
  • On Mac: Open System Preferences under the Apple menu in the top left corner. Click iCloud > Set Up Family and follow the onscreen instructions.

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How To Invite Family Members

The Family Organiser can invite up to 5 other family members to the group at any time by following these easy steps.

  • On iPhone/iPad: Go to Settings > [Your Apple ID] > Family Sharing > Add Family Member. Enter their name or e-mail address and then follow the onscreen instructions.
  • On Mac: Open System Preferences under the Apple menu in the top left corner. Click iCloud > Manage Family > + and follow the onscreen instructions.

They’ll also be given the option to create an Apple ID for a family member under the age of 13.

What’s Shared?

Your family will be able to share music, movies, photos and App Store purchases too. In other words, if one family member buys an app, you’ll all be able to use it! That goes for iTunes and iBooks purchases as well. Even iCloud storage can be shared. Don’t worry though, you’ll always have the option to keep any purchase private by hiding it. The Family Organiser can also approve or decline any purchases and downloads made by family members under 18.

Other Features

Family Sharing creates a shared calendar where family members can view, add, or change events and appointments. Alerts and reminders will be sent out when something changes. This makes it easy for family members to stay connected, even if they’ve already left the nest. Family members can also contribute to shared albums, share their location and use Find My iPhone to find a lost family member’s iPhone.

If you’re having trouble with any of the above steps, make sure everyone is running the latest version of iOS and macOS. We hope this blog was helpful, and as always, if you have any questions feel free to get in touch with us!

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Everything You Need to Know About the New Samsung Galaxy S8

Samsung Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus was released early May. There’s alot to be excited about, so we’re here to break down everything you need to know about Samsung’s latest flagship smartphone.

The first thing you’ll notice when you set your eyes on the Galaxy S8 is that screen! It curves around the edges of the phone, measuring 5.8 inches on the S8 and 6.2 inches on the S8+. That’s 0.7 inches more than the S7 and S7 Edge respectively. But despite having a larger screen, the S8 is actually no bigger than its predecessor. This is because Samsung has managed to save room with a sleek, near bezel-less design and by implementing a virtual home button.

A new feature has been introduced on the S8 called Bixby, Samsung’s very own virtual assistant which has been likened to Siri and Google Assistant. Samsung describes its new virtual assistant as “an intelligent interface that learns from you to help you do more. It learns from your routines to serve up the right apps and content at the right time, keeps track of your to-do list, and gives a deeper understanding of what you are looking at.” Bixby can be easily accessed using the S8’s new dedicated Bixby Button on the screen.

Face Recognition

Samsung gives us three different ways to unlock the S8. The first is by touching the fingerprint sensor on the back next to the camera. The second is by using the iris sensor at the front of the phone. The third way is to use Samsung’s very own facial recognition system, which unlocks your phone at lightning fast speed. It’s expected to be an improvement on previous face-unlock methods, though we’ll have to wait and see just how secure it will be.

The 12 MP camera is actually the same as the S7, but those who have used the S7’s camera will already know how good it is. It is capable of shooting 4K video and Samsung also says that it has made some improvements to the camera software and image processing, so we can still expect it to take better photos and videos than the S7.

As for the nitty-gritty specs, the S8 will come with 64 GB of internal storage, a Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 Octa core processor and 4 GB of RAM. After the Note 7 incident, Samsung wasn’t too ambitious with its battery this time around, giving the S8 a respectable 3000mAh battery and the S8+ a 3500mAh battery.

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There are five different colour options available for the S8: Maple Gold, Coral Blue, Arctic Silver, Orchid Grey and the classic Midnight Black. Pre-orders start here in New Zealand on April 20 and the phones will be on the shelves by May 1.

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