The Mobile-Parties Edition Monday, July 4, 2016

From Political Coups To Family Feuds: How WhatsApp Became Our Favourite Way To Chat, by Emine Saner, The Guardian

There is something reassuringly traditional about the neatly typed resignation letters, with a House of Commons letterhead and an attack on the Labour leader within. They are solid and permanent, when everything else seems to be falling apart. And old-fashioned, even if one does tweet a picture of it afterwards, as many MPs have done. But according to reports, those conspiring against Corbyn were far more modern. They used the messaging service WhatsApp. And it wasn’t just Labour. There was thought to be at least one WhatsApp group of Conservative MPs exploring ways to stop Boris Johnson becoming leader. Gone are the days of machinations in back rooms and hushed conversations in corridors; the leaders of the two main political parties could be decided on a mobile app more often used by teenagers wondering where to go on a Saturday night.

‘We Might Die – Quick, Send A WhatsApp’: Couple Saved Via Messenger, Because Pictures Are Better Than Words, by Tyler O'Hare, Techly

A picture is worth a thousand words, as this couple found out when they realised they were stuck – and used a snap from their phone to help emergency crews find and rescue them.

Bending Rules

Like It Or Not, Apple Is Right About Spotify (And Is Bending The Rules For It), by Nate Swanner, The Next Web

[Spotify] seems to be forgetting how commerce works, digital or otherwise. It’s Apple’s store, and the only place to get iOS apps.

And in choosing to have an iOS app, Spotify chose to play by Apple’s rules. It’s also benefiting from them. When I wrote about this dispute popping up, I noted that playing by Apple’s rules was definitely better than pulling the app — Spotify’s only other choice.


Procreate 3.1 For iPad, by Preshit Deorukhkar, Beautiful Pixels

Version 3.1 ships with features such as Streamline, Quick Menu, Automatic Selection, Better Canvas Creation, a Modify button for the Eyedropper tool, Advanced Gesture Controls, Tilt customizer for the Apple Pencil, Video recording up to 4K, PDF export and Duplicate Selection into a New Layer.

Insta360 Nano Cam Gives iPhone 360-degree Video Capture, by Adam Westlake, Slashgear

VR-supported and 360-degree videos are starting to become more common, but your everyday user doesn't always want — or have access to — a big fancy camera rig to capture such footage while one the go. The Insta360 Nano aims to address this need with a pocket-size camera that brings 360-degree video recording to the iPhone.


Why Tech Support Is (Purposely) Unbearable, by Kate Murphy, New York Times

You may consider yourself even-keeled, the kind of person who is unflappable when those around you are losing their cool. But all that goes out the window when you call tech support. Then you fume. Your face turns red. You shout things into the phone that would appall your mother.

It’s called tech support rage.

Eye-Fi Demonstrates The Danger Of Cloud-Dependent Hardware, by Glenn Fleishman, TidBITS

Are you concerned about the long-term viability of devices that fall under the loose notion of the Internet of Things (IoT), in which a cloud connection is required to keep devices functioning? If so, a move by Eye-Fi, which makes SD cards that could automatically transfer newly taken photos to a cloud service, should give you pause. It sure did for me.

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