iOS 7.1 is out with CarPlay support, Siri and Touch ID improvements and more! Jailbreakers should stay away!

ios-7-promo-1024x761
Apple has just released long-expected iOS 7.1 for public consumption, the first major software update to its mobile operating system in nearly six months. As you know, Apple last September gave iOS a substantial visual makeover that inadvertently brought issues like random restarts and crashes.

Apple claims it’s fixed these problems while adding a myriad of user interface refinements and a few new features, including Siri and Touch ID enhancements.

You’ll also appreciate noticeably faster animations and transitions, as well as new accessibility options, performance improvements and more. If you’re jailbroken, do not upgrade to iOS 7.1 – you’ve been warned…

iOS 7.1 carries a build number of 11D169b.

Again, people with jailbroken devices should steer away from iOS 7.1 as it kills theevasion jailbreak by patching key kernel exploits.

The update is available for the following iPhone, iPod touch and iPad devices compatible with iOS 7: the iPhone 5s, iPhone 5c, iPhone 5, iPhone 4s, iPhone 4, iPad Air, iPad mini with Retina display, iPad mini, third and fourth-generation iPad, iPad 2 and fifth-generation iPod touch.

To apply this update OTA, hit Software Update under the General section of iOS Settings or connect your device to iTunes on your Mac or Windows PC. Additional information about the security content of this update is available in this support document.

iOS 7.1 fixes a bug that caused the Home screen to crash for some, resulting in random restarts. As a bonus, iPhone 4 owners should enjoy snappier performance after upgrading to iOS 7.1 from one of previous iOS 7 versions.

More importantly, iOS 7.1 includes new Siri features, Touch ID improvements, CarPlay integration and a number of other tweaks and refinements, all listed below.

The company has also released the Apple TV 6.1 software update for the second and third-generation Apple TV. Again, it pays to sit tight for now if you want to keep your Apple TV jailbreak.

We’ve written extensively about iOS 7.1 so don’t be shy, explore our iOS 7.1 archive.

Some of the highlights in iOS 7.1 worth mentioning:

  • iOS 7.1 features CarPlay support
  • Siri in iOS 7.1 lets you manually control when she listens by holding down the Home button while you speak and letting it go when you’re done
  • Touch ID fingerprint accuracy and reliability has been improved
  • Camera app has a new ‘HDR Auto’ feature
  • Photos & Camera tab in iOS Settings has a new ‘Upload Burst Photos’ option
  • you can now use a new ‘Darken Colors’ option under the Increase Contrast section of the Accessibility tab
  • the Phone app has a new-look dialer
  • you can disable Parallax effect independently of other animations when setting up wallpaper
  • iCloud Keychain is supported in additional countries

Other tidbits:

  • instead of saying ‘No Missed Notifications,’ Notification Center now just says ‘No Notifications’ when an alert is cleared
  • there is a new Yahoo logo in both Notification Center and the Weather app
  • you can now enable or disable bold text without restarting the device
  • a new dialogue appears when restarting iPhone 5s, which reads ‘Touch ID requires your passcode when iPhone restarts’
  • new iPad wallpapers
  • ‘Touch ID and Passcode’ has been bumped up to the main menu in iOS Settings
  • list view in the Calendar app has been redesigned
  • you can now enable button shapes
  • animations and transitions are noticeably faster
  • iOS keyboard has new Shift/Backspace key highlights
  • the slide-to-power-off UI has been redesigned
  • icons for Phone, Messages and FaceTime apps have less vibrant colors
  • Music apps has new Repeat and Shuffle buttons

As previously rumored, iOS 7.1 unlocks Apple’s newly announced in-car integration feature dubbed CarPlay, launched at last week’s Geneva Motor Show with initial support from Mercedes-Benz, Ferrari and Volvo.

 

From Apple’s changelog for iOS 7.1:

  • CarPlay
    • iOS experience designed for the car
    • Simply connect your iPhone to a CarPlay enabled vehicle
    • Supports Phone, Music, Maps, Messages, and 3rd-party audio apps
    • Control with Siri and the car’s touchscreen, knobs, and buttons
  • Siri
    • Manually control when Siri listens by holding down the home button while you speak and releasing it when you’re done as an alternative to letting Siri automatically notice when you stop talking
    • New, more natural sounding male and female voices for Mandarin Chinese, UK English, Australian English, and Japanese
  • iTunes Radio
    • Search field above Featured Stations to easily create stations based on your favorite artist or song
    • Buy albums with the tap of a button from Now Playing
    • Subscribe to iTunes Match on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch to enjoy iTunes Radio ad-free
  • Calendar
    • Option to display events in month view
    • Country specific holidays automatically added for many countries
  • Accessibility
    • Bold font option now includes the keyboard, calculator, and many icon glyphs
    • Reduce Motion option now includes Weather, Messages, and multitasking UI animations
    • New options to display button shapes, darken app colors, and reduce white point
  • Other
    • New Camera setting to automatically enable HDR for iPhone 5s
    • iCloud Keychain support in additional countries
    • FaceTime call notifications are automatically cleared when you answer a call on another device
    • Fixes a bug that could occasionally cause a home screen crash
    • Improves Touch ID fingerprint recognition
    • Improved performance for iPhone 4
    • Fixes display of Mail unread badge for numbers greater than 10,000
    • Continued user interface refinements

Apple’s iOS 7.1 webpage is now live so head over there to learn more in terms of new features, capabilities and refinements.

Note:

4G LTE is now functional on compatible iPhones running iOS 7.1 in Lebanon (Alfa & Touch).
List of compatible iPhones:
– iPhone 5 (A1429)
– iPhone 5c (All models)
– iPhone 5s (All models)

Here’s the funniest Lumia ad: Nokia Vs Apple and Samsung, Don’t Fight.

Nokia and Microsoft have been targeting Android and iOS in their ads and campaigns, urging users toswitch to Lumia while Microsoft is planning on releasing an Android app demonstrating the variety of WP’s apps.

Well the latest ad coming from Redmond is dubbed Don’t fight and sarcastically portrays Samsung and Apple’s fans as bickering fanboys, who just love to promote their favorite brands and bash their opponents.

The venue is a wedding at which the guests represent a perfect half and half – iPhone users on one side and Galaxies on the other side of the aisle.

But let’s not spoil the viewing experience – check the ad out for yourselves.

Apple releases iOS 6.1 with more LTE support and Siri improvements + How To Jailbreak iOS 6.1 ?

On Monday afternoon, after 5 beta versions. iOS 6.1 was released by Apple. The update brings more carrier support for 4G LTE and includes a new featurethat allows Siri to buy your movie tickets using Fandango. The update also returns the ability of iTunes Match subscribers to download individual songs from iCloud. This function had been removed in a previous update. 36 new carriers have 4G LTE support for the Apple iPhone and 23 now have it for the Apple iPad following the update. These carriers are in countries and regions like Italy, Denmark, Finland, Switzerland, the Philippines and the Middle East.

Apple has released iOS 6.1Apple iOS 6.1 also makes some minor changes in how boarding passes are stored in Passbook and some adjustments are made to Safari. As we told you previously, the music controls on the lock screen are set up differently to make them easier to use. Apple’s mapping software will also be the subject of some much needed improvements as well.

One bug that was repaired fixed a problem that was causing the JavaScript setting on the iPhone to change without any input from the phone’s owner. This problem came about after Apple added “Smart App Banners” to iOS 6. If a specific app is not found on an iPhone, a banner directs the user to install the app. While helpful to app developers, it was not helpful to Apple iPhone users who saw their JavaScript settings change on their own. The update also allows you to reset your Advertising Identifier which controls how advertisers track your movements on the web using Safari. You can find the feature by going to Settings > General > About > Advertising.

The update to iOS was the first one since iOS 6.0.2 in the middle of last month. That update removed the static lines from the virtual QWERTY, killed a bug that prevented the Apple iPhone from receiving OTA updates, and one that deleted meetings from calendars. Today’s update was pushed out OTA and also via iTunes. To see if you have received it, go to Settings > General > Software Update. The update is about 107MB in size although Apple suggests that you have 1GB of storage available, and takes 30 minutes to install using Wi-Fi. Once you install it, you will have to re-boot and re-enter some passwords for features like iCloud, iMessage, and FaceTime.

How To Jailbreak iOS 6.1 :

First, it must be mentioned that this is a tethered jailbreak for pre-A5 devices only. That means only the iPhone 4, the iPhone 3GS, and the iPod touch 4th generation are supported. If you want something a bit more robust, I suggest waiting until Sunday.

Step 1: Upgrade your device to iOS 6.1. Since this is now public firmware, all users will be able to do this.

Step 2: Download the iOS 6.0 firmware for your device. The reason we need to do this is because RedSn0w 0.9.13b5 doesn’t support iOS 6.1 as of yet. We’re expecting the iPhone Dev team to update this after the untethered jailbreak releases.

Step 3: Download RedSn0w 0.9.15b3 .

Step 4: Connect your eligible device to your computer and place the device into DFU mode.

Step 5: Open RedSn0w, and click Extras > Select IPSW > and select the iOS 6.0 IPSW for your device as mentioned in Step 2 above. Click OK, and RedSn0w should successfully identify your iOS 6.0 firmware. If not, you are using the wrong firmware, or you downloaded the wrong version of RedSn0w.

Step 6: Click back, and then click the Jailbreak button. After a brief load, ensure Install Cydia is selected and then click Next. The jailbreak will commence, and eventually you should see your iPhone come alive.

Step 7: Once your device is back to the Lock screen, place it back into DFU mode.

Step 8: Click back in RedSn0w, and again, use Select IPSW to identify the 6.0 firmware as we did in Step 5. Once this is completed, click Just boot at the top of the Extras menu. This will perform a tethered boot on your device. As your device boots, you should notice a pwnapple logo that replaces the traditional Apple logo as you boot up.

Step 9: Once your device is back at the Lock screen, swipe to the second Home screen page, and you should see the Cydia app icon. Open Cydia, select Developer, and start using it.

Keep in mind, that again, this is a tethered jailbreak only. Hence, every time you want to reboot, you will have to perform the tethered boot portion of this tutorial to get back to the Home screen.

If this doesn’t sound like your idea of a good time, then by all means, wait a few days, and the real untethered jailbreak should be released.

GM announces first vehicles with Siri ‘Eyes Free’ integration

We’ve known for a while now that General Motors was going to be one of the first auto-makers to market with the new Siri ‘Eyes Free’ feature, and today, they made it official.

The company issued a press release this morning, announcing that it would be integrating Eyes Free into its next Chevy Spark and Sonic Drive vehicles, available early next year…

From the press release:

“Early next year, the Chevrolet Spark (1LT, 2LT) and Sonic LTZ and RS will integrate Siri, the intelligent assistant that helps get things done just by asking. Chevrolet made the announcement today at the Los Angeles International Auto Show.

Through the cars’ standard Chevrolet MyLink infotainment system, customers with a compatible iPhone* running iOS 6 can direct Siri to perform a number of tasks while they safely keep their eyes on the road and their hands on the wheel.”

GM says that for owners to access the system, they’ll just simply connect their iPhone with their MyLink radio, and use the steering wheel voice activation button to begin and end sessions.

Once activated, users will be able to make hands-free phone calls, play songs from their iTunes library, listen to and compose messages, and access Calendar functions with their voice.

The system is also built with safety in mind. For example, your iPhone screen won’t light up while in Eyes Free mode, and Siri won’t answer complicated questions that require web pages.

In addition to GM, Audi, BMW, Honda and other auto-makers have signed on as Eyes Free partners. But there’s no word yet on when we’ll begin to see the feature appear in their vehicles.

Apple iPad 3 event photo stirs buzz ! What to expect On March 7?

Apple iPad 3 invitation.

Eagle-eyed readers have been pointing out a curious omission on the imagery of Apple’s iPad-themed invite that went out this morning: there’s no home button in sight. The simplest explanation here is that it’s a photo of (what is presumably) an iPad 2 on its side, something that’s not that much of a stretch given that the iPad’s been designed to work the same no matter which end is down.

Yet it’s also curious given rumors of Apple ditching the home button on the iPad, an option that came to light when the company introduced multi-touch gestures to developers in iOS 4.3, and later as a feature for users in iOS 5. One of those is a full hand pinch that brings users back to the iPad’s home screen, just like what would happen if you clicked on the home button.

Readers might be scratching their heads at the familiarity of this all, though. Two months before Apple took the wraps off the iPad 2, there was a story coming from Boy Genius Report saying that Apple’s next iPad would be the first iOS gadget to ditch the home button for gestures, with others like the iPhone and iPod Touch to follow. That didn’t happen though.

The case for phasing out a home button has become less clear though. It’s a pivotal part of using Siri on the iPhone 4S, and if Siri makes its way to other iOS devices (including future iPads), it would be unusual to get rid of it. Apple has also kept the multi-touch gesture feature something that is optional, specifically to keep games and applications that make use of multi-finger gestures from being broken by the system.

On top of all this, there were also those mysterious iPad 3 home buttons that made the rounds late last year, alongside what was alleged to be the glass front of the device, which–yep–had a spot for the home button.

One thing’s for sure. We’ll know the full story next week, when Apple’s event goes down .

Apple iPad 3: What to expect

As Apple’s iPad 3 announcement approaches, it’s time to shut down the rumor mill, and make an educated guess about what tablet buyers should expect.

Apple iPad 2 photo.

The iPad 3 is unlikely to look much different from an iPad 2.

This isn’t our first rodeo. The wild, often contradictory rumors that precede an Apple product unveiling would have you thinking that the iPad 3 could take just about any form or shape. But really, so long as you don’t get hung up on the specifics, it’s fairly easy to piece together the big picture of the iPad 3. Now that we have confirmation of the event on March 7 in San Francisco, what exactly is it Apple will be unveiling?

Improved screen resolution
The rumors about the iPad 3 display are nearly unequivocal about a substantial improvement to screen resolution. In fact, the only sport left in this rumor is trying to figure out which supplier will provide the anticipated display .

The resolution most often cited is QXGA, or 2,048×1,536 pixels–essentially doubling the iPad’s existing resolution. The result would be an improved realism for games, videos, photos, and e-books.

Better camera
The front and rear cameras on the iPad 2 are decent. And let’s remember, they’re a heck of a lot better than the cameras on the original iPad, which were nonexistent.

With the camera on the iPhone 4S, it’s clear that Apple considers image quality an important feature of a mobile device. With any luck, we’ll see the front-facing camera bumped up to HD quality (improving FaceTime video chat quality) and a rear camera that comes closer to iPhone quality .

Faster processor
Both the iPad 2 and iPhone 46 already feature Apple’s A5 processor. So what’s next? The A6, of course. Improved graphics, speed, and efficiency are the expected benefits of the A6. Graphics performance in particular will need a bump for the iPad 3 to handle all the extra pixels afforded by the improved screen.

Will the A6 be a quad-core chip? There’s good reason to question that, especially with Apple’s emphasis on battery life. Will it make the original iPad feel like molasses? Without a doubt. 4G data
Will the iPad 3 be Apple’s first 4G-compatible device? It seems likely. Apple has always offered versions of the iPad with cellular data support (priced $130 over their Wi-Fi-only siblings). With the iPad 2, Apple extended its tablet family to include iPads for both AT&T and Verizon. With both networks placing so much emphasis on their 4G data capabilities, it seems only natural that Apple would finally branch out and embrace their technology.

Siri

Siri will make the move to iPad 3.

Now that iPhone 4S owners have exhausted the novelty of Apple’s Siri voice assistant, it seems only natural for that feature to trickle down to the iPad 3.

What’s not changing?
None of the above predictions is earth-shattering. In fact, to brace yourself for further disappointment, let’s run through the inventory of what isn’t likely to change.

Apple’s 9.7-inch screen size isn’t going anywhere. Neither is its 4:3 aspect ratio. The entire app catalog is designed around these measurements and Apple clearly hasn’t been suffering for it.

The iPad isn’t likely to get any cheaper. Yes, the competition has shown that there’s room for a low-cost tablet like the Kindle Fire, but going low-end has never been Apple’s strategy. Besides, Apple still dominates the tablet market and needn’t change what’s been working. Sure, the company may make a separate, smaller product, offer the iPad 2 hardware at a discount, or beef up the iPod Touch with a bigger screen, but the iPad 3 described above is unlikely to cost less than $499.

The iPad 3’s design is also not likely to be radically different. In the year since the iPad 2 has been on the market, only one tablet (the Asus Eee Pad Transformer Prime) has been able to match the iPad’s design in both thinness and use of premium materials. Let Samsung and Sony flail around with daring new tablet designs. If Apple can maintain the design it has while introducing an industry-defining screen technology–that’s enough.

Final thoughts
It’s tough not to run wild with iPad 3 rumors and speculation, but the most likely scenario we’ll see from Apple is an incrementally improved device that will stun users (and disrupt an industry) with a unique high-resolution display.

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Apple is now worth $500,000,000,000 !