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Jamf buys ZecOps to bring high-end security to Apple enterprise


The Apple-in-the-enterprise story continues to unfold, this week with Jamf’s announced plans to acquire mobile threat detection and response company ZecOps.

Already consumer-simple, Jamf becomes government secure

Jamf will likely reveal more about the motivations behind the deal at its JNUC event for Apple admins, which begins tomorrow. The purchase is the latest move by the Apple-focused enterprise MDM provider to supplement device management with an increasingly effective set of tools to bolster device security.

From here, it seems inevitable the addition of ZecOps tech will give managed Apple devices much greater awareness around the state of endpoint security, while also widening Jamf’s own market.

ZecOps — declared one of the world’s most innovative companies in 2021— is used to protect world-leading enterprises, governments, and individuals, including Bloomberg and the BBC. It famously identified a nasty iOS vulnerability in 2020.

“ZecOps is the only available tool that provides the capability to extract, deliver, and analyze mobile device logs for signs of compromise or malicious activity,” said one customer, described only as “Department of State, a G7 government.”

Securing the enterprise

That’s very much in tune with the times, of course. The pandemic has proven the need to secure endpoints as criminals began targeting users to undermine corporate security systems. ZecOps should extend Jamf’s existing mobile security capabilities by adding advanced threat detection and incident response.

Ideally, devices should be able to act and react when a recognized exploit is made against them. This seems to be the direction of travel, given that ZecOps provides iOS users with the same level of threat defense Mac users already get using Jamf Protect.

It gives iOS devices some insight into detecting the kinds of sophisticated mobile threats that Apple’s Lockdown mode aims to prevent. Not only that, but a user can run both Lockdown mode and ZecOps software at the same time. (You have to install the profiles for ZecOps/Jamf Protect and/or any VPN service you use on the device before enabling Lockdown Mode.)

Mobile devices now account for 59% of global website traffic, and according to the 2022 Verizon Mobile Security Index, close to half (45%) of companies claim to have suffered some compromise in the last 12 months.

The addition of the software means Jamf can help accelerate mobile security investigations from weeks to minutes, leveraging known indicators of compromise at-scale and identifying sophisticated 0- or 1-click attacks on a deeper scale.

Threat detection for the rest of us

Jamf CEO Dean Hager Jamf explained why this matters: “We believe ZecOps has built a differentiated solution that meets a very important need for many organizations — the ability to thoroughly detect and investigate threats that target mobile users so they can confidently use these powerful devices for work,” he said.

“This capability further propels our goal of continuing to bridge the gap between what Apple provides and the enterprise requires.”

What Jamf gains

ZecOps is a sophisticated solution that enables advanced threat-hunting by capturing and analyzing logs from iOS and Android devices at the operating system layer. This critical data can accelerate incident response by enabling automatic or on-demand mobile cyber investigations.

The solution has been designed to handle the vast amount of data held in iOS logs to identify potential zero-day or single- or zero-click attacks. According to Jamf, ZecOps “does the heavy lifting for SOC teams, saving months of work per investigation.” To achieve this it automatically builds a suspicious event timeline and compromise to help show how and when devices are hit.

The idea that tech could have access to the logs on your device may make some users uncomfortable, but the companies stress that the log collection the system does is confined to low-level system and diagnostics data. It does not include personal data such as photos, videos, text messages and call logs.

“We founded ZecOps to catch hidden 0-click and 1-click attacks,” said Zuk Avraham, co-founder and CEO at ZecOps. “By combining with Jamf, we can offer our customers truly powerful mobile threat intelligence and threat hunting capabilities that will keep up with the evolving threat landscape without compromising the user experience.”

Enterprise news for Apple IT

This is just the latest in what now promises to be a run of interesting items involving Apple in the enterprise this fall, as we head toward the Apple Mac and iPad event/press release announcements next month. (At the moment, the speculation is there may be no Apple event.)

Jamf last week confirmed Jamf Pro support for virtual Macs in AWS. It opens the doors to JNUC 2022 in San Diego tomorrow.

Please follow me on Twitter, or join me in the AppleHolic’s bar & grill and Apple Discussions groups on MeWe.

Copyright © 2022 Softwaretoolapps, Inc.

GoTo adds co-browsing functionality to its contact center offering


GoTo has launched a new co-browsing capability within its contact center, giving agents the ability to securely assist their customers within their web browser and provide more effective help via a single communications and support solution.

Most commonly used in customer service scenarios to improve online conversions and experiences, by having co-browsing software in place, agents and customers can collaboratively “browse” a website, web application or mobile app together in real time.

As businesses overwhelmingly look to consolidate their tech stack, by enabling co-browsing from within the GoTo application, customers will have a solution that allows them to fully serve their customers all in one place, GoTo said in a press note.

Customers will also benefit from the all-in-one unified experience that co-browsing offers, reducing tool fatigue and context switching for both employees and customers, the company said. The new capability allows customers to enable data masking, button blocking, and encryption to ensure the co-browsing experience remains secure.

The co-browsing capability can be activated on any browser and device while agents chat with customers through web chat, social media, or SMS, meaning customers can physically see online application forms, be walked though their ecommerce purchase or directly shown how to use an app or product feature.

The announcement further builds on the updates to the company’s cloud contact center-as-a-service (CCaaS) systems that were announced in March 2022, a month after the company rebranded from LogMeIn to GoTo. During that initial update, GoTo added a slew of enhanced contact center options to make agents more productive, including advanced analytics, time saving features and additional remote support capabilities.

Copyright © 2022 IDG Communications, Inc.

3 smart settings for better Google Pixel battery life


If there’s one feeling all of us phone-carrying cuttlefish can relate to, it’s the sense of anxiety when that dreaded low-battery warning shows up on our screens.

Both Android itself and Google’s Pixel phones, specifically, have gotten much better at managing battery life over the years. But some of the Pixel’s most intelligent systems for safeguarding your stamina are options in your phone’s software — and that means it’s up to you to find ’em.

Google’s Pixel software is absolutely overflowing with those sorts of out-of-sight treasures, so to continue our ongoing Pixel settings explorations, I want to spelunk our way into some of your device’s most advanced options for stretching your battery life to the max.

Make your way through ’em — then make your way over to my free Pixel Academy e-course, if you haven’t already, for seven full days of advanced Pixel sorcery.

The power’s already in your hands. All that’s left is to learn to make the most of it.

Google Pixel battery life booster No. 1: Smarter charging

First up in our Pixel battery life adventure is a way to make your Google-made phone especially optimized and efficient with its charging — which will help make your battery last longer and perform better from a bigger-picture perspective.

Copyright © 2022 IDG Communications, Inc.

Jamf Pro now lets IT admins manage AWS Mac instances


Jamf has teamed up with Amazon Web Services (AWS) to introduce new tools that let IT admins using Jamf Pro enroll virtual EC2 Macs when they are provisioned via the AWS portal.

It means even virtual Macs can have all the security, policy, and access controls you’d expect from the Mac on your home or office desk when enrolled.

This is news because?

We know AWS is one of the world’s biggest cloud services firms — it has such a major presence that it is seen as a “hypervisor.” Amazon began offering Mac instances in the cloud in 2020 and ramped this offer up with the later addition of M1 Mac minis as a service through AWS.

That already means developers can hire both Intel-based and M1-powered Macs, which many use to build, test, package, and sign off apps built for different Apple platforms. The problem was that when it came to enterprise-specific apps or data, those cloud-based machines lived in a strange gray zone outside of traditional MDM/security policy.

That’s fine for some AWS users, but as the value of personal data and business intelligence continues to grow in a highly digital age, many business leaders needed something more.

What Jamf said

I caught up with Jamf CEO Dean Hager, who shared a few insights into the new deal with AWS. He explained that Jamf and Amazon got together because Amazon found its customers needed this kind of integration. They wanted to be able to apply profiles and install software and keep their virtual Macs as updated and managed as their physical ones — but delivering this wasn’t easy due to the way virtual Mac instances worked.

Copyright © 2022 IDG Communications, Inc.

How to share Safari Tab Groups on iPhone


Apple’s latest addition to the litany of tools for project and research collaboration, while inherently limited to Mac, iPhone, and iPad users, might even be of use to pros from time to time.

Apple’s keeping tabs for you

Despite wailing from bookmark reactionaries like myself, Apple seems truly committed to the notion of organizing the web using tabs, rather than traditional bookmarks. It introduced Tab Groups with iOS 15.

These are designed so you can keep dozens of tabs organized and available without needing to have them all open at once. This lets you use your browser in a slightly different way. So, if you were researching components for a major architectural project, you might create Tab Groups for different parts of the project, while also having a third Tab Group within which you gather research for your next vacation.

The useful thing about these groups is that they automatically propagate across all your devices as long as they are all logged into the same iCloud account, which means you can continue working on any device and easily shift to another to complete your tasks.

What’s new in iOS 16 is the capacity to share these Safari Tab groups.

How to share Safari Tab Groups

Lets say you are researching those building materials and need to share the fruits of that research with others on your team — or even with external providers who might help guide your decision. We haven’t yet seen this feature appear on iPads or Macs (those OS updates are due later this fall), but it’s reasonable to think the way we share Safari Tab Groups will be similar on those devices as it is on an iPhone.

Copyright © 2022 IDG Communications, Inc.

UK’s Ofcom to probe cloud services, messenger apps, and smart devices


FaceTime, WhatsApp, and Zoom could be in the crosshairs of UK communications regulator Ofcom, which has announced a probe into cloud services, messenger apps, and smart devices. It’s just the latest in a global sequence of regulatory investigations likely to impact Big Tech.

UK is looking into the clouds

The UK regulator says it plans to examine the positions of Amazon, Microsoft, and Google in the UK’s $17 billion cloud services market. These three “hyperscalers” account for the vast majority (81%) of that market.

Enterprises became much more reliant on cloud services during the COVID-19 pandemic, and Gartner predicts 45% of IT spending will be on public cloud by 2026, for example.

The Ofcom investigation will extend to how the cloud is used. “The cloud has become an essential part of how products are delivered to telecoms users, as well as viewers and listeners of TV, radio and audio content,” Ofcom said. “If we find a market is not working well, there can be negative impacts on businesses and ultimately consumers, through higher prices, lower service quality and reduced innovation.”

Regulators in other nations will no doubt monitor the progress of the investigation as they seek to maintain their own level competitive playing fields.

The newly announced study will include a look at digital services such as WhatsApp, Zoom, and FaceTime, as well as the market for smart speakers; the latter will draw many names into the picture, including, no doubt, Apple’s HomePod.

Copyright © 2022 IDG Communications, Inc.

Macs still lead the ACSI survey as PCs go mobile and work goes remote


The latest American Customer Satisfaction Index data seems to show that Apple’s iconic Mac is losing a little luster in comparison to PCs from other makers, but I’m not entirely convinced.

Got to keep the customer satisfied

You see, the data shows Apple narrowly leads in the PC category (82% v. 79%). It also shows that some of Apple’s larger PC manufacturing competitors are gaining ground. Perhaps. But dig a little more deeply into the survey results and you’ll find the biggest innovation across the industry in the last couple of years (other than the move to Apple Silicon) involves improvements in customer services, specifically in call centers. 

The survey also confirms that tablets and laptops continue to replace desktop PCs. In 2021, 24% of the survey group used desktops compared to 62% on laptops and 14% on tablet devices; in 2022 desktop users accounted for 20% of survey respondents, laptop users 64% and tablet use reached 16%. 

It will be interesting to see whether the incoming M2 and then M3 Macs will help Apple add a point or two to its many-years-long consumer satisfaction leadership in the ACSI survey.

How did manufacturers improve consumer satisfaction? The single biggest improved criteria contributing to the result was the aforementioned call center satisfaction. Not processors, not software, but improved customer communication. As a criterion in the context of our times, that makes complete sense.

Reach out and touch point me

During the pandemic, shortfalls in tech support call handling became huge problems for some manufacturers. In the absence of any in-person help, PC makers had to force themselves to improve their remote communication services, and this led inexorably to better customer response at call centers. They knew they had no other way to make a direct connection with their consumers.

[Also read: Review: Apple’s M2 MacBook Air]

If I’m right, then it’s understandable Apple didn’t see the same level of improvement in customer satisfaction levels across this time.

That’s because it already offered outstanding tech support — both in-person and remote — before the pandemic. While the company did tweak its approach a little since the crisis began, those tweaks could not make best better than it was. But the ACSI survey suggests other PC makers did improve.

That’s a welcome relief for PC users stranded on platforms other than the Mac, I suppose, but it is also noticeable that satisfaction with Microsoft’s software continues to decline, according to the same survey. (Microsoft’s ASCI computer software satisfaction fell from 76 in 2021 to 73 this year.) It’s got to be better to build platforms that don’t generate too many help request calls.

We all by now recognize that Macs consume far less IT support time than other platforms, which translates into real financial benefits in terms of the TCO of these machines. Microsoft’s decline also suggests Apple’s unique selling point around macOS should make for continued gains in market share.

That’s also what the sundry market survey data that’s crossed my desk in the last few weeks suggests. Yes, PC sales have declined, but Apple’s share of those sales continues to grow, and in terms of raw numbers, the company appears to be maintaining while the overall industry shrinks. Given the choice, most employees will continue to choose a Mac, and the latest ACSI survey does nothing but suggest this choice will prevail.

Please follow me on Twitter, or join me in the AppleHolic’s bar & grill and Apple Discussions groups on MeWe.

Copyright © 2022 Softwaretoolapps, Inc.

Android’s underappreciated design revolution | Computerworld


Over the past couple years, those of us who pay close attention to mobile-tech matters have been watching a whole new paradigm of design shape up right before our overly moist eyeballs.

And you know I have to be talking about something important here, ’cause I’m using big words like “paradigm” and, erm, “eyeballs.”

The subject in question is something core to the Android experience — particularly for anyone who’s palming a Google-made Pixel phone, where the core Android software exists in its most undiluted form.

It’s a little somethin’ called Material You, and having lived with a Pixel through a full year of Android 12 and now the beginning of Android 13, I’m here to tell you it’s one of the most shape-shifting and underappreciated advancements we’ve seen in modern tech — even if hardly anyone seems to be giving it the credit it deserves.

Material You, if you aren’t familiar, is the new design standard Google introduced with Android 12 in 2021 and then fine-tuned further with this year’s Android 13 update. It’s easy to brush it off as another mere revamping of Android’s on-screen appearance — some added shadows here, some extra-rounded elements there, and other such arbitrary-seeming adjustments.

To do so, however, would put you at risk of missing not only one of Android’s most clever and significant enhancements of all time but also one of the coolest and most consequential design innovations to hit any form of technology in recent memory.

Copyright © 2022 IDG Communications, Inc.

iPhone users have become more cautious about fast iOS upgrades


The urgency with which IT needs to prepare for major iOS releases seems to have slowed since the early days when everyone rushed to install the latest version of Apple’s mobile software.

At least this year, iPhone users appear to have become a little more laid back.

The installation patterns are changing

The reasons for thinking this are suggested by the latest Mixpanel stats. As of earlier today, Mixpanel claims roughly 13.3% of iPhone users have upgraded to iOS 16 since it was introduced this week. That’s a slightly more rapid adoption rate than iOS 15 saw (11.7%) last year, damaged as that release was by user reluctance to accept on-device content monitoring.

Here are Mixpanel’s installation data points for earlier iOS releases at this point in the release cycle:

  • iOS 16: 13.3%
  • iOS 15: 11.7%.
  • iOS 14: 14.7%.
  • iOS 13: 12%.
  • iOS 12: 13%.
  • iOS 11: 19.2%.

As you can see, the last five iOS upgrades have all shown very similar installation patterns, with iOS 11 being the most swiftly installed upgrade since 2017.

The data basically confirms that while people are still excited when new iOS versions ship, they have also become more discerning about exactly when they choose to upgrade.

Copyright © 2022 IDG Communications, Inc.

What’s new in Notifications in iOS 16?


If you’ve switched to iOS 16, you’ve probably already realized Apple has tweaked the system. Notifications now appear at the bottom of the display and there are other changes that must be learned.

We all use them, we all need them

With the recent introduction of iOS 16 and the extent to which mobile pros depend on notifications — and the arrival today of the new iPhone 14 line-up — this is a ood time to look at how Apple has changed the system.

There are two equally valid schools of thought when it comes to notifications.

In one group, you have those for whom notifications are an essential way to maintain at-a-glance insight into people, messages, and app-related events that matter to them. They like to be informed of such things as they happen, but have the determined concentration to remain focused on the matter in hand. They might switch audible notification alerts off, but otherwise they see them as a friendly ambient noise.

The second group consists of those distracted by notifications, who find that they break their chain of thought. They can be a real challenge to some people, generating all kinds of unwanted side impacts.

Life beyond Focus mode

To help navigate the problem, Apple provides Focus Mode, which helps manage the digital overload, hopefully prioritizing what matters above those that don’t. Notification frequency and behavior is important, given the frequently cited 2016 Deloitte study that found people check their phone at least 47 times a day, often in response to these things.

Copyright © 2022 IDG Communications, Inc.

Sadly, IT can no longer trust geolocation for much of anything


Geolocation was once a glorious way to know who your company is dealing with (and sometimes what they are doing). Then VPNs started to undermine that. And now, things have gotten so bad that the Apple App Store and Google Play both offer apps that unashamedly declare they can spoof locations — and neither mobile OS vendor does anything to stop it.

Why? It seems both Apple and Google created the holes these developers are using.

In a nutshell, Apple and Google — to test their apps across various geographies — needed to be able to trick the system into thinking that their developers are wherever they wanted to say that they are. What’s good for the mobile goose, as they say.

Food delivery services use geolocation to track delivery people and to see if they have indeed delivered to a customer’s address. Banks use location to see whether a bank account applicant is really where the applicant claims — or to see whether multiple bogus applications are coming from the same area. And AirBNB uses geolocation to try and detect fake listings and fake reviews, according to André Ferraz, the CEO of mobile location security firm Incognia.

“For fraudsters, besides exploiting developer mode to change GPS coordinates, many other tools enable location spoofing, both for IP-based geolocation and GPS-based geolocation,” Ferraz said. “For IP-based geolocation, there are VPNs, proxies, tor, tunneling. For GPS, the most accessible are the fake GPS applications. Still, there are also tampering and instrumentation tools, rooted or jailbroken devices, emulators, tampering with the location data in motion and many others.”

Ferraz is regrettably right. Regardless of which one of these many options a fraudster opts to use, the bottom line is that IT simply can no longer trust geolocation for much of anything. There are some applications where the risk of meaningful damage from location fraud is so low that it’s probably fine to use location — say, a gaming application where someone pretends to be in Central Park when they aren’t. If all they get are points or access to a special visual treat, it’s likely harmless.

Copyright © 2022 IDG Communications, Inc.

Why Apple’s October event matters to business


As the dust settles on Apple’s iPhone 14 launch, get ready for the next big moment on the company’s calendar — the joint Mac and iPad introductions we now expect to take place in October. What do business leaders need to know?

What hardware is coming?

Apple may introduce a new breed of MacBook Pro equipped with M2 Pro chips, though some sources warn these may not appear until 2023. It’s thought highly probable the company will introduce a new iPad Pro range, likely boasting an M2 chip, putting that machine on a par with the Mac.

The decision to narrow the gap between Mac and iPad reflects how Apple’s tablet has grown to become a viable PC replacement for many tasks. Business users, for example, have become much more comfortable leaving the laptop at home to work with an iPad when on the road. That the best iPads share the same processors as Macs underlines the complementary nature of both systems, and builds on the increasing popularity of the iPhone across business.

What’s the business appeal?

For business users, the integration between Apple’s computers, tablets, and mobile devices is a real draw. Apple’s move to craft its own chips has also enabled the company to build out a unique proposition based on processor speed.

The strategy also gives Apple something it didn’t have before. When the company was dependent on others, Intel or before that IBM and Motorola, for processors, it was constrained by the limitations of those manufacturers. Now in complete control of processor production, the company can optimize its systems to a degree competitors can’t easily match.

That’s great for Apple enthusiasts, but for enterprise purchasers it represents a clear and coherent strategy. The products work well together and business users considering a switch can see the depth of the company’s commitment to its platforms and a future road map for development. We already expect Apple will begin moving its platforms to 3nm chips starting in 2023, when the first M3 Macs (and, presumably if tablets remain in step) iPads appear.

Year by year, Apple is unleashing performance gains of around 20% across its entire range even as it makes equally significant improvements in energy efficiency. That Apple nurtures a powerful enterprise supporting ecosystem, including a thriving MDM market and regular annual software upgrades that deliver a solid sense of security to businesses considering upgrade. This is a coherent forward strategy more and more business users are prepared to buy into.

Where it counts: employee experience

Apple continues to provide technologies most workers would choose, if given the choice. We saw rapid expansion in Apple deployments during the pandemic as employers sought to support remote workforces.

The adoption of remote working also exposed security challenges, which Apple and its partners have put a lot of focus into in recent years. It is moving to secure a passwordless future, introduced powerful protection such as Managed Device Attestation, and has improved the Mac’s own ability to protect itself from malware with powerful self-diagnosis and malware checking tools. These protections mount up.

Taking the leap

There are always bumps in the road. Economic uncertainty certainly exists. This is likely to blunt the achievement Apple has set up for itself in the last few years.

At the same time, the big advantages it has as it puts its Macs and iPads in a few lines on enterprise purchase orders reflect all the above.

That’s why those occupying seats in the C-suites will be looking with interest at whatever it is that Apple announces next this fall, even as minds continue to wonder aboutt the company’s next big thing.

Please follow me on Twitter, or join me in the AppleHolic’s bar & grill and Apple Discussions groups on MeWe.

Copyright © 2022 Softwaretoolapps, Inc.

The 20-minute Android tune-up | Computerworld


The start of fall sure is a special time, isn’t it? Colors are changing, leaves are falling, and fancy new phones are poppin’ up practically everywhere you look.

And that’s not all, either. With the official onset of autumn now just days away, there’s never been a better time to clean up, freshen up, and make sure your own existing work spaces are perfectly primed for productivity.

Making your physical desk presentable is all on you (seriously, pal, would it kill ya to do a little dusting once in a while?), but when it comes to that virtual office in your pocket — y’know, that shiny ol’ smartphone of yours — I’m here to help.

A handful of simple-seeming steps can go an impressively long way in clearing out the virtual clutter and turning your Android phone back into the optimal work companion it oughta be. And best of all? It won’t take you more than 20 minutes to pull off.

So pop open your hood, pull on the nearest pair of oil-stained coveralls, and get ready to get your hands metaphorically dirty: It’s time to step into the garage and get your mobile device in tip-top shape for the months ahead.

Android tune-up step 1: Uninstall unnecessary apps

⏱ Time required: 2 minutes

This first step may sound silly, but believe you me, it can make a world of difference: Whether they’re apps that came preinstalled or programs you downloaded once upon a moon, there’s a decent chance you’ve got at least some unused items lurking in the mustier corners of your phone. And guess what? Those forgotten icons do more than just collect virtual dust; they actively work against your efficiency-oriented interests.

Copyright © 2022 IDG Communications, Inc.

14+ reasons enterprises should upgrade to iOS 16


When it comes to reasons to upgrade to iOS 16 it’s no surprise that most of the focus is on the consumer-friendly features of the new OS. But there are plenty of reasons for enterprise users to upgrade — including these productivity-enhancing tweaks.

Big improvements in SSO

Single sign-on (SSO) lets an employee sign into their managed device once to see it set up for use, including applications and services deployments. Like most simple things, it relies on a complex web of technologies first introduced with Sign in with Apple in 2019. Significant enhancements have been introduced in iOS 16, including support for user enrollment for iOS 16. You can enroll via an MDM provider or via a Managed Apple ID, depending on company deployment strategy.

In another nugget of good news for enterprise IT, Apple has introduced support for OAuth 2.0, which supports additional identity provision systems from third-party services. You can find out more about these enhancements here.

Sign in with Apple at Work & School

Apple introduced integration with Google Workspace earlier this year following previous support for Microsoft sync. Now it has gone further with Sign in with Apple at Work & School, which adds support for Managed Apple IDs to Sign in with Apple.

What that somewhat brand-name-heavy word jamboree means is that employees, educators, and students can sign in with their Managed Apple IDs, which essentially makes it way easier for businesses to distribute and manage employee apps. This also makes for highly efficient device deployments alongside SSO.

Managed Device Attestation

Announced at WWDC 2022, Managed Device Attestation helps prevent attackers from stealing a device’s TLS private keys, spoofing legitimate devices, or lying about a device’s properties. It relies on the Secure Enclave to secure communication between managed devices and services such as MDM. In use, it helps protect vulnerable endpoints and enterprise services against various forms of security compromises.

Copyright © 2022 IDG Communications, Inc.

Will your enterprise app dev teams visit Apple’s Dynamic Island?


When you think about it, Apple’s newly introduced Dynamic Island feature is likely to become a critical interaction point between apps and users of the iPhone 14 Pro and Pro Max phones that support it. It looks like a great opportunity for B2C and B2B app experiences that can build digital connection with end users.

What is Dynamic Island?

Dynamic Island turns Apple’s boring notch, behind which the FaceID camera sits, into an excitingly interactive area that lets users monitor important app activity (such as delivery service ETA, music playback, and sports scores) and take control of apps.

It’s possible to hold two apps active in Dynamic Island while working in another app. (For many, that will come down to doom-scrolling Twitter while waiting for pizza delivery. Let’s not judge.)

In typical Apple style, the Dynamic Island presents itself in a range of different shapes with fluid animations. The information it presents should be seen as glanceable data — you won’t be reading books or engaging in more sophisticated tasks in Apple’s Dynamic Island. You have other apps for that.

Apple will enable the feature, which depends on new Live Activities frameworks, in a later release of iOS 16. “Once ActivityKit is available in an update to iOS 16, you’ll be able to implement Live Activities and interact with them in Dynamic Island,” Apple told developers.

Dynamic Island isn’t universally available. It will only be supported on Apple’s most expensive iPhone models and exploits the pill-shaped area that supplants the notch.

Copyright © 2022 IDG Communications, Inc.

20 great uses for an old Android device


Got extra smartphones sitting around your office? How about tablets? As we move multiple generations into mobile technology, more and more of us are building up collections of old, dated devices from both our work and our personal lives. And more often than not, those devices do little more than take up space and gather dust.

Here’s a little secret, though: Your abandoned Android gadgets are actually virtual gold mines. You just have to find the right way to tap into their potential and give them new life.

So grab the nearest DustBuster and get ready: Here are 20 ways to make your old phone or tablet useful again.

1. Use it as a wireless trackpad and controller for your computer

With the right software and a couple minutes of configuration, your old Android device can act as an on-demand controller for your Windows, Mac, or Linux computer.

An app called Unified Remote and a Wi-Fi or Bluetooth connection are all you need to make the magic happen. The free version of the app gives you basic mouse and keyboard control along with specialized remotes for media playback and power-related commands, while the full $5 version adds in program-specific remotes for presentation control along with other advanced features.

Unified RemoteJR Raphael / IDG

Unified Remote provides basic mouse and keyboard control along with a variety of specialized remotes.

Grab whichever version you prefer and download the server-side software for your computer — then toss your old device into a desk drawer or computer bag and rest easy knowing it’ll be ready and waiting the next time you need to go wireless.

California’s Golden State Killer faces life prison sentence

California’s Golden State Killer faces life prison sentence

SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- Joseph James DeAngelo Jr., a former police officer, faces a sentence of life in prison without the possibility of parole for 13 rape-related charges and 13 murder counts stemm…