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Back to reality

Has 2018 arrived a little sooner than you had hoped it would? Still not ready to let go of December holiday indulgences like afternoon naps and long lazy days at the pool? You may even find that January has come along so quickly that you haven’t had a chance to plan and prep yourself mentally and practically to take on the new year. That’s ok, because with iPad, iPhone and these really handy apps that help with budgeting to planning and just generally getting yourself organised, you’ll be able to get yourself into gear in no time at all.

Important notes 

There’s nothing worse than forgetting (or losing) an important piece of information or a deadline at work. With iOS 11 on your iPad or iPhone, there are a ton of ways to keep track of everything “NB” and stay better organised this year.

With half of your life saved digitally and some of it still floating around on paper (think medical bills, slips, birthday party invitations, kids school schedules) there’s always a risk that you lose an important document. iOS 11 has a brand-new document scanning tool that is built directly into the Notes app so that you can save a digital copy of something you want to refer back to. All you need to do is open Notes, open or create a note, tap the plus sign, Scan Documents then line up the document you are wanting to scan. Better yet, if you have an Apple Pencil and an iPad Pro you can make notes on the document or sign it if you need to.

You can drag and drop other information straight into Notes instead of doing a copy and paste. It has other functionality to help you better organise all of your notes. For example, you can swipe right to pin a note to the top of the list or swipe left to lock, move or delete a note. With all of these nifty features built into your Notes app, you have so many more ways to better organise all kinds of information to easily refer to on a daily basis.

Daily schedules

Keeping a neat and tidy schedule is another way for you to be well prepared to tackle everything that the new year holds. If your schedule is really busy and you want to get a good bird’s eye view of what your upcoming week holds, turn your iPhone sideways. You can also quickly add, move and edit entries into your calendar. To move an event, tap and hold it, then drag and drop the event to a new time. To change the date of the event, drag it toward the left or right side of the screen, or “grab” a handle on the top or bottom of an event to lengthen or shorten it.

Colour coding is one thing that  is sure to get you organised (A-type personality people jumping up and down with excitement). You are able to load different calendars, each with a different associated colour. The events that correspond to this calendar will appear in this colour. So now you’ll have a good handle on what’s happening when, and for what! You could set up a Family calendar, Work calendar, Birthday calendar and even a Social Engagements calendar.

Manage your finances

If you’ve never really taken budgeting seriously, then now is the time to start! It’s a great way to manage your finances better and also plan for any future rainy days. There is a lot of detail involved (we understand) and it can often seem really tedious to collate every bit of it, but thankfully there are some great apps out there which make financial planning a whole lot easier.

22seven is one of our favourites! It gives you a really easy way to track your finances by automatically analysing and categorising all of your personal spending via your bank statements. It’s private and secure and it allows you to see all of your money in one place while also giving you suggestions and advice on how to invest your money in smart ways.

Planning ahead

Aside from some of the incredible built-in features in the Notes and Calendar apps that come with iOS 11, there are also a ton of apps that will help you to plan better in 2018.

If you’re a student, My Study Life is an app that will help you stay on top of your studies by keeping track of exams, class schedules, assignments and much more. The layout is really simple (and colour coded) making it easy to use and view all your important information. Everything is stored in the cloud so that you can access it from your iPhone or your iPad whether you’re on campus or at home. It’s basically a turbocharged version of your regular paper planner.

If you’re a businessman or businesswoman, or just have a busy life in general, Planner Pro is the ideal app to keep on top of daily life. All of your events, tasks and notes are combined into one application. You can order things by priority as well as include detailed information around any tasks or projects you may be busy with.

Organise all of your documents

With our lives being as busy as they are, it’s so easy for all of the documents that we create to get disorganised! The Files app on your iPad and iPhone replaces the iCloud Drive app and makes working with your files a breeze. You can easily navigate between all your files stored on iCloud using the Browse and Recents tabs at the bottom of the app as well as via Favourites and Tags. With third-party integration, you now also have access to documents stored in third-party services that support integration with the app.

So now you see, 2018 doesn’t seem to be so daunting after all now does it? With a powerful device like iPad or iPhone as your sidekick and all the amazing apps out there that help you to just get it done, the year ahead is all set to be your most organised one yet.

 

 

 

 

5 things you can do with Siri and iOS 11

Our favourite personal assistant has received yet another makeover with iOS 11. From a new and improved voice to an advanced learning feature that allows Siri to get to know you better, the ‘new’ Siri brings an exciting update to your iPhone or iPad making her more useful than ever before!

Here’s why:

#1 Enjoy a more natural voice

To make Siri even more realistic, iOS 11 has introduced a much more natural sounding male and female voice. It’s more expressive and adjustments are made for intonation, pitch, emphasis, and tempo while Siri is speaking. What once sounded like a robot, now sounds much more life-like! It’s subtle, but it goes a long way to enhance your daily interaction with Siri.

#2 Get personal recommendations

In iOS 11, Siri gets to know you a whole lot better. When you use your iPhone or iPad, Siri collects data about things you’ve searched for or shown interest in from your device.

Not all of the iOS 11 Siri functionality is available in Nigeria yet but let’s have a look in any event!

One of our favorites is suggestions in the News apps. Here Siri collates articles in the ‘For You’ pane and the more you use the app, the more tailored these suggestions become. As expected of the Apple ecosystem, these suggestions are synced across your devices so if you’ve searched for something on your Mac, Siri can still offer recommendations inside the News app on your iPhone.

Want another example? If you have just responded to an invitation to an event, Siri will ask if you want to add it to your calendar. If you get a message from someone asking how far away you are, Siri will even suggest the distance or time based on your current location that you can respond with. Now that’s what we call being one step ahead!

#3 Have your own music expert

With iOS 11, Siri becomes your personal DJ with all kinds of new music-related features. Like the personal recommendations for news* Siri learns your music preferences and suggests songs that you may like. Depending on your mood, Siri can also curate playlists for you. Siri can also give you answers to random questions you may have like “Who is the guitarist in this song?”.

#4 Type to Siri

If you’re a bit on the shy side you will love this new addition to Siri in iOS 11. Speaking out loud to a virtual assistant in public might make you feel awkward. Now you have the option of typing to Siri. If you go to the Accessibility settings you can turn the home screen shortcut for Siri from talking to typing only. If you decide you still want to talk to Siri though you can still have the best of both worlds by just using the “Hey Siri” command.

#5 Get quick translations

Being able to have something quickly translated on the spot is something that Siri can do with her eyes closed*. Siri can now translate from English into five different languages — Chinese, German, Italian, French and Spanish — with more languages being added in the months to come. It’s really simple to use this feature, all you need to do is ask Siri “How do I say,” or “translate,” and then say what you want to translate and what language you want to translate it into. For example, “Hey Siri, how do I say goodbye in French?”. Siri will speak the translation back to you so that you can hear how it sounds and she will also give you the text version to refer to.

Please note, this feature is still coming to Nigeria – in the mean time, you can set Siri to US English to make use of the feature.

* Not available in Nigeria yet.

Meet iPhone X. Need we say more?

 

 

 

With bold, new features that open up a world of innovation, iPhone X is an entirely new category of iPhone. Iconic for its edge-to-edge screen and Super Retina OLED display that together create a totally immersive experience, this iPhone is unlike anything you’ve ever seen before. Ironically, it also sees you. With the all-new Face ID recognition, your iPhone X now recognises your facial features and brings to iPhone secure authentication, Animoji and more. We’re going to take you through some of the top features of iPhone X that make this iPhone the most advanced one yet.

A design that sets a new standard

A signature feature of the iPhone X is the all-new edge-to-edge screen design that is the first of its kind for iPhone. The screen has been developed with innovative technology that allows it to flow seamlessly to the edges, making it feel as though the device is made up entirely of screen. Instead of a home button, which has been removed , you’ll now use gestures and navigation that are intuitive and familiar to you to perform tasks on your iPhone.

iPhone X is made of durable glass on the front and the back and comes with water, splash and dust resistance for those spontaneous adventures or unplanned mishaps!

A stunning display

Integral to iPhone X’s impressive array of new features is the dazzling 5.8-inch Super Retina OLED screen. This custom built display houses an industry-leading, advanced colour management system that gives a really deep, rich and smooth viewing experience. Colours are more accurate, brighter and beautiful than ever before. TrueTone technology also means that the display senses the light and automatically adjusts the white balance on your image to match the light that is around you, making the screen look and feel more natural.

A more advanced camera

The TrueDepth camera system packs a powerful punch in one teeny tiny space at the top of your iPhone X. It’s built on innovative technology that contains an infrared camera, flood illuminator, proximity scanner, ambient light sensor, speaker, microphone, 7-megapixel camera and dot projector. The 12MP sensor is larger and faster, and deeper pixels give your images that professional edge.

All of this cutting-edge technology not only allows you to take incredible photos, but also enables Face ID which is new to iPhone. And no, someone won’t be able to hack the entry into your phone. The authentication is secure as it analyzes more than 30,000 invisible dots on your face to create a precise depth map. This ‘map’ is your password. So your iPhone X essentially has the ability to map your face, recognise it and then use that information intelligently to give you access to your iPhone X. Neat right?

Portrait mode on your TrueDepth Camera introduces new features like sharper foregrounds, more blurred backgrounds and better performance in a low light setting. Portrait Lighting is a new feature in this mode and produces impressive studio‑quality lighting effects.

And we’re sure you’ve heard about Animoji? It’s adorable and futuristic all in one! This novel new face mapping concept, that uses the front-facing camera and 3D mapping sensors of the iPhone X that come with the TrueDepth Camera, analyzes more than 50 different muscle movements in your face. These are then mirrored to 12 different Animoji’s who mimic those same movements. You access it via an app in Messages and can make all kinds of wild and goofy expressions – your Animoji will do exactly the same! Getting an on-screen pig to frown or a panda to look like it’s laughing is more satisfying than you think. It’s all in the name of fun and that’s why we love it so much!

A powerful engine

Like the iPhone 8, iPhone X comes with the A11 Bionic chip which is the most powerful and smartest chip ever used in a smartphone. The speed of the CPU is up to 30% faster than previous iPhones and it utilizes the power more efficiently, so that you have more power but for the same amount of battery life. There’s nothing quite like not being interrupted when you’re trying to get stuff done!

Face ID fun facts

Face ID has some features that we think are really cool!

Isn’t it annoying when your screen dims while you are reading before you are finished? Face ID recognizes that you are reading and the screen stays lit!

Face ID can see that you are holding your iPhone X, so when it rings or the alarm goes off, it lowers the volume because it knows that you will be able to hear it.

Notifications and messages will also only be revealed for your eyes. So you can breath a sigh of relief that an embarrassing message won’t pop up when a client (or even worse, your boss!) is looking at something on your iPhone.

Let’s recap on the incredible features of iPhone X!

Water and dust resistant with a beautiful glass back and front.

Edge-to-edge screen for a totally immersive experience.

Super-Retina OLED display that is a total feast for the eyes.

TrueDepth Camera with new and unique functionality.

TrueTone technology for more realistic images.

Face ID recognition for secure authentication.

Animoji. Just for fun.

Portrait mode with portrait lighting feature.

A11 Bionic chip for powerful and efficient processing.

Wireless charging for all-round convenience.

An updated look and a whole new iPhone experience – #HelloiPhone8

 

iPhone 8 brings with it an impressive array of new design features like the all-new glass casing, improved camera capabilities, wireless charging and powerful performance enhancements with the new A11 chip. 

It’s an entirely new iPhone experience and it’s right here at iStore. 

This is why we can’t get enough of it.

 

Sophisticated design

iPhone 8 is a stunning combination of advanced design features and sophisticated aesthetics. The new all-glass design, on the front as well as the back, is made from durable glass and reinforced by an aerospace‑grade aluminum band and metal substructure. Because it’s water resist there’s no need to panic when you need to make that urgent call while it’s raining. The outer case also has a special coating so that you can easily remove those smudges and fingerprints.

Apple also introduced the new AirPower mat with iPhone 8. This neat accessory is a mat that you can place your new iPhone 8 on (and other compatible devices like you Apple Watch and Airpods) and it will charge it through the glass back, making your iPhone charging entirely cable free. Prefer old school cables? You will still be able to charge your device as you normally would have as the cable comes with iPhone 8, AirPower is sold separately. 

If you love your music, you’ll be excited to know that with iPhone 8, the stereo speakers now play up to 25% louder with an even deeper bass. So you can really push the limits when listening to your favourite tunes, watching videos or making video calls. 

Thanks to iOS 11, you can also get a glimpse into what all of your friends are listening to and  sneak a peek at the playlists they have curated by viewing their personal profiles. Find your favourite song and crank it up on the new and improved stereo speakers built into iPhone 8.

 

Beautiful display

Thanks to True Tone technology, the Retina HD Display on the new iPhone 8 is more gorgeous than ever! True Tone senses the light and automatically adjusts the white balance on your image to match the light that is around you making the screen look and feel more natural. Ultimately, what this does is give you a viewing experience that is less of a strain on your eyes because it looks more like a printed page than a screen. The colours on your iPhone 8 are also beautifully richer with the new, wider colour gamut. 

If you like catching up on the latest news on your iPhone, then True Tone on iPhone 8 is going to make reading those interesting news stories a whole lot easier on the eyes. In addition, with iOS 11 you’ll only see the top stories that are most relevant to you and also have the option of browsing through topics that Apple’s editors carefully create for you on a daily basis.

 

Advanced Camera

The Camera on iPhone 8 is an indulgence of new features and advanced technology that will get even the most mature adult squealing with delight. If you thought you loved the camera capabilities on your current iPhone, then get ready for a whole new set of exciting possibilities. iPhone 8 Camera comes with a more advanced 12MP camera that has a larger, faster sensor, new colour filters, deeper pixels and an optical image stabilization for photos and videos. This means that it’s now really easy for you to experiment with all kinds of advanced photographic techniques and produce incredible photos and videos.

Portrait mode also has sharper foregrounds, more blurred backgrounds and better performance in low light settings. There is also a host of new filters that come with iOS 11 that make your portraits look like something out of a magazine! This feature is so cool that we couldn’t help ourselves from revealing the juicy details but please note that it is only available on iPhone 8 Plus and up. 

 

Optimal video quality

Video capture on your iPhone 8 is better than ever before! Enhanced stabilisation, faster video frame rates and real-time image and motion analysis are all a result of the new image signal processor and video encoder that comes with the new iPhone 8. The image and motion analysis that is done in real-time means that your video has optimal quality. And along with a new advanced compression technology, your videos will be the same quality as before but half the size.

Why not take advantage of iPhone 8’s improved Camera by exploring the new video Time Lapse feature on iOS 11? You’ll be able to capture all kinds of time and movement elements that you never could before.  

 

High performance

iPhone 8 comes with the most powerful and smartest chip ever used in a smartphone. Its called the six-core A11 Bionic chip. What this means is that iPhone 8 has a much faster CPU of up to 30%. It also utilizes the power more efficiently, so you have more power but for the same amount of battery life. 

With all of this enhanced performance capability and the improved camera on your iPhone 8, Augmented Reality just became, well, a reality! This functionality has opened the door wide for developers to start creating an array of games and apps that reach new heights in terms of fluid and realistic graphics on your iPhone 8.

 

Let’s recap!

There is so much to love about the new iPhone 8! These are the highlights!

4.7″ display for the iPhone 8 and 5.5″ display for iPhone 8 Plus

Available in silver, space grey and gold finishes

Durable glass body design

Water and dust resistant

Wireless charging

Louder stereo speakers

Retina HD Display with True Tone technology 

More advanced 12MP camera

Cameras ready for Augmented Reality

Better video capabilities 

Faster A11 processor

 

 

 

 

iOS 11 iPhone

With iOS 11, your iPhone becomes more personal, professional and efficient than it’s ever been. With a host of new and intuitive features for your Camera, Siri, 24/7 music enjoyment and more – get ready to love your iPhone even more.

Here are our favourite enhancements.

Photos. Even more lively than before.

With iOS 11 you can create fun video loops with your Live Photo’s. Photo’s can cleverly suggest pics that would make great loops or you can choose your own. You can also make your Live Photo rock back and forth.

Say “Hi” to time-lapse feature

Time lapse features and beautiful effects that you would normally only get with your DSLR camera, have now been introduced to iPhone, allowing you to beautifully capture all kinds of time and movement elements that you never could before.

Memories also gets a burst of intelligence! It now picks only the best photos for your memory roll and excludes ones where people are blinking for example.

Camera: It just got a hit of professional.

With a host of new professional-quality filters available for the Camera on your iPhone, you will be able to take your photo editing to a whole new level.

Plus, with new compression technology, you can store twice as many photos and videos by taking the same quality as before but at half the file size.  Portrait photos have been given a makeover too with the introduction of new filters along with improvements to software helping you to take portraits in low light.

You know when you try to take a photo from the top (to avoid that double chin) but you also want it to be dead straight without any odd angles?  Well, you’ll be really excited to know that Apple has introduced a built-in level, which helps you to get the best possible shot! All you need to do is enable it in Settings. Once this is done, a grid will appear for you to check if you are completely parallel to the ground or surface below.

Siri. A sidekick like no other.

With a new, more natural and more expressive sounding voice, Siri has received a major update in iOS 11. She is now more personal and intelligent than ever before. If you are a frequent  traveller, you’ll love Siri’s new ability to quickly translate words and phrases in five different languages. How handy is that? All you need to do is ask her “How do you say” or “translate” and she’ll speak it back to you so that you can hear how it sounds. She’ll also give you a text version for reference.

Siri now also has new ways to get to know you better. As you use your iPhone, data is collected about what you’ve shown interest in like news you’ve read or music that you like. With this information Siri then gives personalised recommendations in other apps such as Safari or Maps. If you make a flight booking online, Siri will even ask you if you want to add this to your calendar. She can also help you to quickly answer questions in Messages like “How far away are you?”. Talk about having your own PA!

Apple Music and Airplay 2. 24/7 enjoyment.

With access to millions of songs to keep you toe-tapping throughout the day, it is sometimes nice to have a little “inside info” to stay on top of your game. With iOS 11 you can get a glimpse into what all of your friends are listening to and sneak a peek at the playlists they have curated by viewing their personal profiles. Airplay 2 also allows you to control all kinds of things in your home, music being just one of them. You can now opt to adjust the volume in any room and play the same song in one room as you’re playing in another via various Bluetooth speakers

Other new features we know you’ll love.

Guess what! You just became a pro at typing with one hand. With the QuickType keyboard, all you need to do is select one-handed typing, and the keys will instantly move closer to your thumb. So whether you’re making breakfast or grabbing a snack at the shopping till you can now multitask like never before.

Automatic Setup is a nifty new feature that allows you to quickly and easily set up some of your personal settings on your new iPhone or iPad just by holding it near an iOS device. Things like your preferences and iCloud Keychain passwords are quickly and securely imported. How’s that for saving time!

We all know how dangerous it is to text or talk on your phone while driving. That’s why we just love Do Not Disturb While Driving. It’s a new setting that blocks calls and messages to minimise distractions while driving. It can be set to come on automatically when connected to a car’s Bluetooth, or manually. If it’s set to come on automatically your iPhone will detect when a car accelerates and turn on the Do Not Disturb setting.

With a slew of news crossing your desk every day, finding ways of whittling it down to the most interesting bits is really useful. With iOS 11, you’ll only see the top stories that are most relevant to you. Apple’s editors also choose different topics for you to view in a tab called Spotlight and a daily selection of carefully curated videos for you to watch in Today View.

iPhones supporting iOS 11

iPhone X

iPhone 8

iPhone 8 Plus

iPhone 7

iPhone 7 Plus

iPhone 6s

iPhone 6s Plus

iPhone 6

iPhone 6 Plus

iPhone SE

iPhone 5s

Introducing macOS High Sierra

macOS High Sierra focuses on major under-the-hood updates and introduces new technologies that elevate the reliability, capability, responsiveness of your Mac and improves on its most important functions. In addition to some technical changes, there are a ton of new and exciting features that come to apps like Safari, Photos, Mail, Notes and more.

Have a look!

Safari. Speedier and smarter.

There’s nothing worse than the constant bombardment of adverts and videos when you’re browsing on Safari. Especially when it’s something you searched for or clicked on once and now advertisers assume it’s your latest obsession! With Machine Learning, Safari now has the ability to identify advertisers who are tracking your online presence and it removes the cross-site tracking data that they leave behind. This means that you don’t keep seeing the same ads over and over again. There is a drop down on your URL in Safari which allows you to enable or disable content blockers.

With macOS High Sierra, you can now customise your viewing experience. You’re able to prevent unwanted audio and video from automatically playing when you visit a site by turning it off altogether or specifying which sites you would like to turn it off for. You can further customise how you prefer to view individual sites by specifying whether you would like to receive notifications from that website for example or whether you would like certain content to be blocked. Safari also automatically uses Safari Reader for all articles that support it so you can read to your heart’s content without ads or other distractions.

Photos. All new ways to edit and organise.

With macOS High Sierra comes new editing tools and ways to organise and view your photos. The improvement of the available set of editing tools, enables you to make advanced changes to your images without having to know too much about the process. With powerful fine-tuning tools you can make even more sophisticated colour and contrast changes and you’ll also have the ability to saturate specific colours. New filters give a more professional look to your photos. If you like to do even more advanced editing in a program like Photoshop, you’ll be glad to know that all your edits and changes can automatically be saved in Photos so you don’t have duplicate versions floating around!

There are also new ways to organise your photos. Instead of only seeing the last import in your sidebar, it now expands so that you see all of the latest imports. You can filter your photos by your favourite criteria and if you’re picking your favourite images from different albums, a special selection counter keeps track of your selections and allows to either drag and drop these into another album or export them.

Let’s get technical.

There are some major updates coming to macOS High Sierra that may all sound a bit techy at first but will make dramatic differences to your Mac experience on a day to day basis. So, strap yourselves in because it’s about to get a whole lot faster, more secure and more responsive.

Apple File System.

Apple has been using a certain type of file system for around 30 years and it has worked solidly since it’s inception. But since the introduction of a flash-based Mac, there are a ton of possibilities that have become available. The Apple File System is better designed for flash and also equipped for future innovation and storage capabilities. It brings an advanced level of security and responsiveness when accessing all of your files – documents, mail, apps, photos, and well, everything really. From a safety aspect, there is now built‑in encryption, crash‑safe protections, and simplified data backup.

Virtual Reality.

With macOS High Sierra developers can create virtual reality experiences on Mac for the first time ever! All you’ll need is an iMac Pro or 5K iMac – or, any Mac that can run the new OS with an external graphics card box attached via Thunderbolt 3. You’ll also need optimized support for Valve’s SteamVR and the HTC Vive VR headset, and content creation apps like Final Cut Pro X, Epic Unreal 4 Editor, and Unity Editor. With all of this in tow, developers will have all the tools they need to create wild, immersive experiences for you to enjoy.

HEVC new video standard.

With the introduction of High Efficiency Video Coding (HEVC), your videos can be compressed up to 40% better than current video compression on 4K video. This is great news if you work with videos a lot.

Metal 2. Graphics on another level.

Metal 2 introduces technology into your Mac that unleashes the power of your existing graphics processor (GPU). With more advanced visuals and added capabilities like virtual reality, playing games, creating content and developing software has been given a power like no other!

Other features we know you’ll love.

Notes

If you’re the organised type, you’ll be excited to know that there are new ways to organise your thoughts in Notes! Instead of seeing the latest edited note, you can pin your most used ones to the top of your list of notes so you can easily find and add to them in no time. You can also add tables directly to notes for an even more efficient approach.

Mail

Mail has received a bit of a facelift as well. With split view available you can now compose emails alongside your open Mail window. When you search for a mail, Top Hits puts messages most relevant to your search at the top of your list by analysing mails you’ve read, people you reply to and your VIPs. The more you search, the smarter it gets!

iCloud Drive

It has now become super easy to share files with someone just by sending a link straight from iCloud Drive. You can also share your iCloud storage plan with the whole family so you’ll have space for everyone to store photos, videos, documents, and more.

Macs supporting macOS High Sierra

MacBook (Late 2009 or newer)

MacBook Pro (Mid 2010 or newer)

MacBook Air (Late 2010 or newer)

Mac mini (Mid 2010 or newer)

iMac (Late 2009 or newer)

Mac Pro (Mid 2010 or newer)

Did you know that your iPhone could do this?

With each new update to iOS comes a ton of cool new features that make using your iPhone every day as efficient as it is fun. From quick navigation gestures to ways you can save your battery life and everything in between – however simple, they’ll change the way you use your iPhone on a daily basis. Get ready to have your life changed, one feature at a time. The list is endless but here are some of our favourites.

Get clever on Messages

Did you know that you can quickly and easily forward a message to another contact? Just hold down on the piece of text, select the “More” option and then select the forward arrow icon on the bottom right of your screen. It will bring up a new message for you with the piece of copied text. Fill in the contact that you wish to send it to in the “To” field and you’re A-for-Away.

You can also manually select who does and who doesn’t receive Read receipts when messaging you. All you need to do is open the iMessage thread, and tap the “i” info button on the top right of the iMessage. Disable or enable Send Read Receipts as you wish.

There are also quick and easy ways to respond to texts when you’re busy doing something else. If your phone is locked you can respond to a text by just swiping down on the notification centre and swiping left over the message where you will see an option to reply. Tap it and it will let you reply without even unlocking your phone. You can do the same thing if you are busy in another app as well. Super efficient don’t you think!?

These days we are constantly sharing photos and videos over Messages. If you would like to view all the photos a particular person has sent to you or that you have sent to them, then just open your conversation thread in Messages and tap “i” in the upper right corner. Scroll down and you will see a list of all images and attachments that have been exchanged between the two of you.

Take a screenshot

A screenshot is super useful when you spot something on a website or want to take a snapshot of a conversation you’re having with someone to save yourself some time in relaying the information. Just hold down the home button and the on/off button at the same time and voilà, an image of what is on your screen at that moment will be saved to your Camera roll to use as you wish. Your Photos app will even save all of your screenshots in a separate folder automatically.

Share your location

How often do you find yourself trying to explain to a friend where you are and ascertain how long it will take you to reach them or them to reach you? Apple has designed a way to make this process a whole lot less tedious. To send your location to someone via a text message, just tap the “i” button in the top right-hand corner of the iMessage thread. You can either opt to “Send My Current Location” which will share your location as a once off, or you can choose to “Share My Location” which will allow that person to track you where you go. You can choose to share your location for an hour, until the end of the day or indefinitely. This is especially useful when you’re on your way to meet someone and instead of replying to their texts constantly asking where you are, they can just see for themselves.

EarPods are for more than just audio

Every iPhone comes a set of EarPods that are so much more than just an audio accessory. You can take a picture using the volume button (great for selfies), manage your calls and even activate Siri. When you get a call you can either answer it by tapping the Play/Pause button and then tap it again to hang up. If you don’t want to answer, hold the Play/Pause button down until you hear two low beeps and the call will be sent to voicemail. To activate Siri, all you need to do is press and hold down the Play/Pause button. From there she’s at your beck and call to send a message, make a call or even change the playlist that you’re listening to.

Save your battery

If your battery is running low and you only need to use certain things on your iPhone, switch to Low Power Mode. It’s a super quick way to get your iPhone to save it’s battery life as much as possible. By turning it on it will stop doing stuff like refreshing apps in the background, pushing email and other small things to save battery power. If you are charging your phone it will also charge much quicker if you put it in Airplane mode. You might be prompted with the option to switch this on when your battery is low, or you can switch it on by going to Settings > Battery > Low Power Mode.

Move around as quick as lightening

A gesture that you may not be aware of that will save you some time in apps like Messages, Mail and Safari is the option to swipe right at the edge of your screen to go back to the previous window you had open. It also works in some other apps like Instagram. It’s a little quicker than hitting the back button every time. And more fun, of course.

See things up close

There is a sneaky feature on your iPhone that allows you to turn your camera into a magnifying glass! It’s really easy to use. Go to Settings > General > Accessibility > Magnifies and turn it on. To use it, triple click the Home button and hover over the item that you want to magnify. You will be able to magnify it more or less depending on what you need to see. Now that’s cool!

Please note: these features may not be available on all versions of iOS. Update to your latest iOS to take full advantage of what your iPhone has to offer.

How to make the most out of your Apple TV

Whether you’re a brand new Apple TV user, a long time fan or simply interested to know what Apple TV can do for you – this list is for you! With all kinds of fun ways to use your Apple TV and these useful features, you’ll wonder what you ever did without it.

Use your Apple TV for all kinds of fun

Indulge in your favourite movies and series

With Netflix now available in Nigeria you now have thousands of movies, shows and documentaries to choose from. If you don’t have a Smart TV, the best way to access this is through your Apple TV. All you need is a HDMI-enabled computer monitor or TV and a fast internet connection with plenty of data. For more options, you can also stream the latest movies from iTunes straight to your TV.

Turn your lounge into a games room

Apple TV now has all kinds of games for the entire family to enjoy. An old-school game like Pictionary gets a whole new look with SketchParty.tv which lets you draw on your iPad and it then appears on your TV. Visit the app store on your Apple TV for more.

Pick the fun version of the healthy option

While your Apple TV can keep you occupied for hours with some series binging and entertaining games, there are also fun ways to learn with educational apps or stay fit and healthy with apps that turn your lounge into a gym. Star Walk Kids is a beautifully designed education tool for exploring the solar system and Runtastic Results gives you a step by step training workout to do right in your lounge and on the big screen.

Useful features and handy tips

Watch TV without waking up the neighbours, or your family

Your Apple TV comes with built-in Bluetooth support, so when you’re trying to keep your late night TV watching on the down low, connect your Bluetooth enable headphones to your Apple TV and you’re all set. If it’s the neighbours you’re worried about, you can “Reduce Loud Sounds” by swiping down on the trackpad and selecting this as an alternative audio option and it will attempt to smooth out those loud, jarring sounds.

Use AirPlay Mirroring at home or at work

With your Apple TV, it’s super easy to connect your Mac, iPad or iPhone to your TV screen using Airplay Mirroring. All you need to do is make sure that you’re on the same Wi-Fi network, select AirPlay Mirroring and what you have on your Mac, iPad or iPhone will appear on your TV. This will make you look especially tech savvy in the boardroom when you’re doing a work presentation. To use your Apple TV as a display in the boardroom and allow more than one person to share their Mac or iOS screen with the Apple TV, go to Settings > AirPlay > Conference Room Display and create a custom message so that everyone can see on-screen that the TV is in Conference Room Display mode. Then lock it with a 4-digit pin. These measures are all just to make sure that individuals don’t accidentally share their screen!

Use your Apple Watch or iPhone as a remote

Has the Apple TV remote thief struck again? No problem, you can also use your Apple Watch or iPhone as a remote. All you need to do is download the Apple TV Remote app from the App Store, pair your iPhone or Apple Watch to the TV by entering the 4-digit pin that appears on your TV under Settings > Remotes and Devices > Remote app. If you prefer a traditional remote, you can buy it separately.

Be fancy and choose your own screensaver

Why not personalise your Apple TV and select some of your own photos to appear as a screensaver. It’s really easy, just open your Photos app and go the album that you want to use. There is a screensaver option that you can select. If after a while it gets old, go to Settings > General > Screensaver > Type, to change it up a little. 

Show off your skills and zoom right in

There is a really easy way to zoom in on images on your screen, pan across an image or even adjust the magnification on your screen. These are just some of the accessibility features available on your Apple TV. To turn on the Zoom feature, go to Settings > General > Accessibility > Zoom and view all of the available options.

New ways to get the most out of your Mac with macOS Sierra

With new features designed for your desktop, macOS Sierra makes getting things done on a daily basis a lot simpler. From a more organised desktop, to different ways to multitask and free up storage space, macOS Sierra is packed with an advanced set of tools that are simple to use. Plus, with Siri by your side, you’ll have a sidekick to tackle everything and anything that comes your way. Here are some of our favourite features.

Clean out the clutter

MacOS Sierra comes with plenty of easy ways to free up valuable space on your Mac without wasting precious time going through files and deleting them manually.

All you need to do is:

Click on the Apple icon in the top left of your screen > select About This Mac > Click the Storage tab > Click the Manage button on the right-hand side.

You’ll be presented with a list of options that will help you save disk space and better manage your storage. 

There are four different options:

  • Store in iCloud allows you to move photos and videos on your Mac to iCloud
  • Optimize Storage removes movies that you have already watched
  • Erase Trash Automatically automatically empties any trash file that has been there for more than 30 days (some of your trash may have even been piling up for months!)
  • Reduce Clutter allows you to easily review and delete any old documents by showing you the largest documents first and letting you decide which can stay and which must go.

Move content around in a flash

Wouldn’t it be great if something you copied on your iPad or iPhone was instantly available for you to paste onto your Mac? With macOS Sierra and iOS 10, you can do exactly that – it’s called Universal Clipboard! It’s super easy to set up as well. All you need is for all of your devices to be signed in to the same iCloud account, for them to be operating on the same network and for all of them to be within Bluetooth Range – it’s kind of like Airdrop but with a cherry on top.

There’s nothing to it really, just select your text or photo or something else and select ‘copy’ on one device and select ‘paste’. It works across apps so you can copy something in Safari on your iPad and paste it into Pages on your Mac.

Make sure you turn on Handoff between your Mac and iCloud devices to allow the Universal Clipboard to work. Here’s how: System Preferences > General > Allow Handoff.

Keep things neat and tidy

If you’re the typical ‘A’ type personality then having a neat and tidy screen brings all sorts of calm to your day. Well, we have good news for you. MacOS Sierra helps you to completely declutter your desktop by using tabs for all of your different applications. So instead of having a ton of unfinished email windows open, you’ll be able to collate all of these windows into the Mail app and access them via tabs.

To do this, select Merge all windows which is in the View or Window menu (depending on the app) and voilà, all is in order. You can also select File > New Tab from the menu bar or drag and drop windows to combine them into one tabbed window.

With all your windows in one easy-to-navigate window, multitasking will be your new middle name.

Let Siri make your daily tasks easier

One of the major additions to macOS Sierra is Siri, and we welcome her with open arms. Getting things done in record time and multitasking like a pro is Siri’s middle name, and she’s here to make everyday tasks on your Mac a total breeze. You can ask her to do all sorts of things like sending messages, look for files, adjust settings and so much more. Ask her about the weather for the upcoming week for a destination you’re travelling to, enable Do Not Disturb when you’re catching up with your favourite YouTube channel or ask her to to show you specific files deleted on a certain day with the word “language” in the heading. The options are endless.

Need this now? Go to System Preferences > Siri and adjust settings for language, voice and keyboard shortcut that launches Siri. Now you’re A for Away.

Keep watching while you multitask

Picture in Picture is a new feature that comes with macOS Sierra which allows you to continue watching a video, in the corner of your screen, while you do a bunch of other things on your Mac. You can switch between apps and do what you need to do while the video remains in a floating window in front of all the other windows on your desktop. So if you don’t want to miss a moment of the game or you’re watching a TED talk while you’re work, Picture in Picture means that your video will remain visible on your display in full view no matter what you’re busy with.

One more tip to keep handy in your “back pocket”

Did you know that the blue light from screens has been linked to upsetting your biological rhythm and contributing to insomnia? With macOS Sierra comes a useful setting called Night Shift which is specifically designed to gradually shift the display on your Mac from a blue tint to a warmer tint as the day turns into evening. Go to System Preferences to play around with the different settings like scheduling Night Shift to activate at sunset and deactivate at sunrise or at a specific time of your choice.

We’ve only scratched the surface of all the great features that are packed into macOS Sierra. Did we mention that its a free upgrade? Just visit the Mac App Store, click upgrade and you’re on your way to a brand-new Mac experience.

The essential iStore Holiday Guide

First things first, you can’t walk out the door on your long awaited holiday without your favourite Apple device. It may be your new iPhone 7 or your iPad Pro, either way, it’s going to be a whole lot of fun with your Apple device packed and ready to go. We would hate for you to forget something that may put a dampener on a relaxing few days off, so we have put together a list of things you simply have to include as a part of your holiday kit, no matter what exciting adventure you have planned.

Stay safe

If you’re on the road this holiday safety is a priority. You’ll have family or friends wanting to stay updated with your progress as you journey to your chosen destination. Make sure you stay hands-free by allowing your friends and family to check in on your location on the Find My Friends app on your iPad or iPhone – that way you don’t have to constantly call or message them. You can invite certain contacts to see your location either permanently or temporarily. They can even set up an automatic alert on their side for when you arrive at your destination. The app requires an internet connection to stay updated so if you’re heading into some dead areas, make sure you check in with a phone call at your next pit stop instead.

Plan your trip

Waze is a community-driven navigation app which offers you multiple routes, real-time updates for the traffic and a host of other things to make your travel time on the roads as easy as pie. “Community drive” means that it is updated in real-time by drivers, just like you, about what’s going on on the roads –  which can be really useful when exploring some unchartered territory on the roads. You may also find yourself overwhelmed by the number of things that you need to pack for your upcoming holiday. With Packing Pro you can be assured that you won’t forget any of your essential items. You can create lists to share with your family and even add items from a catalogue of items to make packing an absolute breeze!

Stay entertained in the car

If you have to spend a couple hours in your car getting to your holiday spot, why not catch up on your favourite book while you’re at? Audible offers more than 150,000 audiobooks for the whole family to enjoy. From classic family stories to romantic novels and everything in between, there are more than enough to choose from. The good news is, you can download all your favourite books on Wi-Fi before you leave for your trip so that you can listen offline, no matter where you are. When everyone is tired of listening to stories, why not turn up the volume on some your favourite playlists, expertly curated by Apple Music. Do some browsing before you leave and download music to your iPad or iPhone to listen offline so you’re covered in those hard to reach locations. Choose a few different playlists to suit the mood, it may be some chilled instrumental or even the latest hits that will get the rest of the passengers singing along.

Indulge in your favourite hobby

One of the best parts about going on holiday is that once you’re there, you can spend hours indulging in your favourite hobby, guilt free. Meal times are a great way to spend time together as family and friends on holiday, so if you love to cook why not kick it off with some delicious meals from the Epicurious app for your iPhone or iPaid. This all-time favourite app is full to the brim with ideas no matter what your taste buds desire. It can also prep your shopping lists for you which is super handy when you have so many things to do before jetting off.

If you’re the active type then you may want to use the spare time to get your heart rate up and work up a sweat amidst the long lazy days. Power 20 is a great app to download on your iPhone for a quick, punchy workout that you can do just about anywhere, even on your beach towel. This full body workout focuses on strength, tone and balance and it’s all packed into a twenty-minute session!

One of the best parts of a holiday is the exciting build up to the beginning of your trip. With all this planning and prepping you’re probably chomping at the bit to get going by now. For added excitement why not count down the days as your holiday approaches? Countdown!! is an app that will have you counting down the weeks, days and even minutes to your upcoming trip. With your iPad and iPhone by your side and these apps, you’ll be all set for the holiday of a lifetime!