Weird bug brings circular folders on your home screen

Wednesday April 27, 2016

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We don’t know how this one works but if you follow the steps below and use a particular wallpaper image, the folders on the iOS home screen become circular. No jailbreak required. Nothing required, in fact, apart from a particular wallpaper image.

Here are the steps. We’ll speculate about how it works after.

  1. On your iPhone or iPad, visit this site (Chinese language) and scroll down to the wallpaper images, which are shown as colored blocks. Choose a color you like, then tap and hold it, and choose to save it.
  2. Open the Settings app, then the Wallpaper heading, and then Choose A New Wallpaper. Choose the image you saved in the step above.
  3. Choose Still rather than Perspective view, and after tapping Set, choose to apply it only to the Home screen.

And that’s it. Any folders on your home screen will now appear be circular.

So, what’s going on? The images are extremely simple 3×3 pixel PNG files, with 8-bit color depth. They’re graduated in slightly different shades from lightest at the top to darker at the bottom. Somehow this confuses iOS’ rendering system into fully curving the edges of the ordinarily rounded-square folders. Maybe it’s something to do with the translucent effect applied to the folder? We just don’t know!

We’re sure this is safe because what’s being used is just a very simple image file. As soon as you switch to any other wallpaper image the ordinary folders will return.

[Via videosdebarraquito]

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China now second biggest revenue generator for iOS apps

Tuesday April 26, 2016

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App analytics outfit App Annie is reporting that China has leapfrogged Japan to become the second biggest revenue generator for iOS apps. The number one spot is occupied by the US.

Last year App Annie reported that China was the biggest downloader of iOS apps, overtaking even the US in this regard.

Unsurprisingly, China’s revenue growth in iOS apps has been driven mostly by games but the growth of 2.2x year over year has taken App Annie by surprise.

Furthermore, the report says:

If China’s iOS game revenue continues to grow at these rates, it is set to pass the US in the coming quarters. However, the US still maintains a sizable 30% lead on China for total iOS App Store revenue due to the growth in monetization of non-gaming apps in the country. While the US experienced a stronger growth rate year over year in Q1 2016 than in Q1 2015, China is growing at an even faster rate.

Apple has made no secret that it’s spending significant resources investing in China in order to take advantage of the country’s growing middle classes. However, China has recently closed Apple’s iBooks and iTunes Movie stores in the country.

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Weird but entertaining Ask Siri bug

Tuesday April 26, 2016

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Here’s a weird and inconsequential but entertaining Siri bug: When you use the “Ask Siri” function to wake-up Siri, and ask it to convert zero degrees fahrenheit to celsius, it shows the correct answer on screen but starts to babble away with an impossible and silly math formula.

See the video below where this is demonstrated. Of course, this might not be a bug but perhaps Siri’s attempt at a joke. Who knows?

Note that this ONLY happens if you use the Ask Siri function. If you just activate Siri and ask the question, the bug won’t appear.

Since the 9.3 update to iOS, Siri has become much more interested in interpreting requests as numerically oriented – often to the detriment of other, simpler requests. This is a frequent complaint on sites like Reddit.

[Via Reddit]


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Track the time spent actively using your Mac

Tuesday April 26, 2016

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Aware is a very simple (and free) app that lives in the menu bar of your Mac and keeps track of the amount of time you spend at your computer. It does this by keeping a timer running when you type or move the mouse, and for a moment or so after. However, should it become clear you’re away from your Mac then the timer stops.

A big worry with apps like this when used on a portable Mac is that they might eat battery life but, according to Activity Monitor, Aware’s energy usage is essentially negligible.

For keeping track of working hours, or just for those who are curious, Aware fulfills the brief admirably. It’s simple, effective and free.

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