The Reduce-Density Edition Monday, March 9, 2020

Apple’s Cook Offers Work From Home This Week To Most Staff, by Mark Gurman, Bloomberg

Beyond encouraging work from home, Cook said Apple is “making a major effort to reduce human density and ensure those teams that are on-site can do their work safely and with peace of mind.”

Apple is implementing “new efforts to maximize interpersonal space and continuing, enhanced deep cleanings,” according to the memo. This includes reducing human density and occupancy at Apple classes and Genius Bar appointments at stores.

Coming Soon?

Blood Oxygen Detection And Upgraded ECG Features For Apple Watch In Development, by Zac Hall, 9to5Mac

Apple is developing at least two new features focused on health that will expand Apple Watch capabilities in the future. Apple Watch will add the ability to detect blood oxygen levels for the first time, 9to5Mac has learned.

Apple’s Powerbeats 4 Specs And Images Leak, by Jon Porter, The Verge

Internally, the earbuds will reportedly use Apple’s new H1 wireless chip, similar to the Powerbeats Pro, which should mean support for features like “Hey Siri” and “Announce Messages with ‌Siri‌.” The earbuds will reportedly be available in black, white, and red.


Apple Celebrates International Women’s Day With Interactive Homepage Feature, by Benjamin Mayo, 9to5Mac

On both desktop and mobile, Apple’s homepage has been transformed into a scrollable universe of biographies of influential women in modern culture, from Malala to Greta Gerwig.

Selected Apple Stores Launch 'iPhone Can Do Whaaaat?' Display, by William Gallagher, AppleInsider

The 20 phones each start by displaying a brief explanatory sentence, followed by words such as "swipe," "tap," or "scroll." When the user does that, they see more details and a visual demonstration of the iPhone feature.

Among the features Apple is promoting are ones to do with Apple Pay and Find My. "Send money as easily as a message," says one, while another reads: "Lost it? Find it with the Find My app."

I Thought Apple Watch Was Pointless But Now I Love It, by Ed Hardy, Cult of Mac

I got a used Apple Watch Series 2, which you can find for under $100. I was immediately surprised how useful I found this device, despite how obsolete it is.


Hit Delete, Ditch Reply-all And Other Ways To Manage Your Work Emails, by Amy Fleming, The Guardian

“Get really comfortable with the delete button,” he says, “and set your recycling bin not to empty regularly, so that if you accidentally delete things, you can retrieve them easily.” The goal should be managing your attention, not your emails, he says, “therefore a key part of an ‘inbox zero’ system is to do whatever it takes to get your attention on to the most important and fulfilling stuff. If that means a few smaller things go awry once in a while, so be it. Your job isn’t to do email well, it’s to use email to do your work well.”


ARM-ed Mac: Not Again Or For Real This Time?, by Jean-Louis Gassée, Monday Note

Today, the Mac line represents a little less than 8% of Apple total revenue. How much of a temporary revenue disturbance would Apple be willing to endure in order to secure an ARM future for its iconic personal computer? Could the iPad’s rising revenue (6.5% of total) help cover the hit once its user interface (and keyboard with trackpad) makes it more laptop-like?

Bottom of the Page

Why is the volume control missing in so many apps' Now Playing screen? Of all the music- and podcasts- and audiobooks-playing apps currently in my iPhone, only one app has a volume control easily accessible in the Now Playing screen. (Which app? Apple's Music app.)

Yes, I know the volume control is 'easily' available in the control centre, just one swipe away. But, seriously, aren't the reduction of clicks and swipes and what-nots a good thing in user experience?

Or is it that difficult to implement a good volume control in iOS?


Thanks for reading.