The Audio-Accessibility Edition Tuesday, December 19, 2017

A More Accessible Future: AirPods, Hearing Aids, And The Audio Technology To Make It Possible, by Michael Steeber, 9to5Mac

Apple CEO Tim Cook has repeatedly stated his belief that technology should be accessible to everyone. For decades, Apple products have shipped with accessibility features, proof that these values are deeply rooted in the company. Apple even launched a dedicated accessibility website in 2016, showcasing the stories of several individuals and how their lives have benefited from accessible products.

One branch of accessibility that’s received an increasing amount of attention is hearing. While iOS has supported hearing aids in some capacity for years, deep integration with the iPhone first became possible when Apple expanded its Made for iPhone (MFi) licensing program to cover hearing devices. Advancements in Bluetooth Low Energy technology in concert with a proprietary audio transmission protocol have been essential in enabling a steady stream of iPhone-compatible hearing aids and cochlear implants to be released.

Apple Let A Fake $5 Cuphead Game Into The App Store, by Adi Robertson, The Verge

It’s not too surprising that somebody would try to rip off Cuphead for a platform like iOS. But it’s very surprising that Apple would let it slip through the submission process, when its legitimacy falls apart under basic investigation — especially because Cuphead was one of the most highly anticipated games of the year.

End Of The Smashed Phone Screen? Self-healing Glass Discovered By Accident, by Samuel Gibbs, The Guardian

Japanese researchers say they have developed a new type of glass that can heal itself from cracks and breaks.

Glass made from a low weight polymer called “polyether-thioureas” can heal breaks when pressed together by hand without the need for high heat to melt the material.


Final Cut Pro 10.4: Hands-on With Five Small But Notable Enhancements, by Jeff Benjamin, 9to5Mac

Final Cut Pro 10.4 is a big update with several new tentpole features, but these smaller features prove that Apple is listening to basic usability requests as well.

Plex Launches Winamp-inspired Plexamp Music Player For macOS Through Plex Labs Incubator, by AppleInsider

Available for macOS and Windows, Plexamp was built by a handful of Plex employees as an homage to music players of the past that also serves as a testbed for new services.

Review: Zagg Slim Book For 10.5-inch iPad Pro, A Versatile Alternative To Apple’s Smart Keyboard, by Chance Miller, 9to5Mac

One thing that’s hard to deny is that the Slim Book is far more versatile than the Smart Keyboard. The Smart Keyboard is limited to one viewing angle, while the Slim Book can be adjusted to any angle and the keyboard part can be completely removed if necessary.

The Slim Book offers a case mode that completely detaches the actual keyboard in instances where you want to be ultra-portable. There’s also a video mode that uses the keyboard as a stand to make it easier to watch videos, and it’s far sturdier than the Smart Keyboard stand.

Transferring SD Card Data To iOS, Fast, by Jason Snell, Six Colors

Like the Wi-Fi-enabled SD card I previously used, you have to download a custom app in order to view the contents of the SD card and transfer it over to your iPad or iPhone. The difference is speed. The MobileLite’s Wi-Fi transfer speeds are vastly better than those from the tiny SD card.


What Happened When I Tried To Learn Coding From A Robot, by David Penick, Fast Company

So when I started hearing about a new way to learn–through coding robots–my interest was reignited. Although many such robots are geared toward kids and STEM education, adults with limited coding knowledge can also have fun while learning coding with them. But the difference is that adults aren’t normally in daily classroom settings that teach coding like kids are.

Supposed Apple Email On App Review Policy Changes Is Fake, by Benjamin Mayo, 9to5Mac

A screenshot of an email being circulated around the internet in the last day supposedly revealed new strict app review policies. We have confirmed with sources that this email is not legitimate communication and does not reflect a real Apple policy decision.