Category: News

The latest news with an iPad focus.

Pre-order Diablo Immortal (but don’t hold your breath)

Blizzard announced Diablo Immortal, an online hack-and-slash game in the Diablo universe designed for mobile, years ago. People were initially disappointed, hoping for Diablo IV rather than a mobile game, but the backlash has mostly died down, andI’m sure fans of the genre in general, and Diablo in particular, are looking forward to this installment.

Well, you’ll be happy to know that you can pre-order Diablo Immortal on the App Store today. The question is, why should you?

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The new black Magic Trackpad

There’s a new Magic Trackpad available, and it’s available in black, alongside the previous white version. This is the same sort of Magic Trackpad that’s been shipping with the M1 iMacs, so it differs slightly from the Magic Trackpad 2. Yeah, Apple and their naming conventions…

Anyway, I wanted to compare the black (or space gray) Magic Trackpad I’ve been using, to the new black version. Luckily, I’ve been one Magic Trackpad short due to setting up the new office, so I had the perfect excuse to pick up a new one.

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Can the Logitech MX Anywhere 3 be a Magic Trackpad substitute? (#88)

This week’s issue of the Switch to iPad newsletter follows up on the Logitech MX Anywhere 3 review published yesterday.

How are you navigating your iPad? I’m writing this on an 11” iPad Pro, sat in the Magic Keyboard, but that’s not always the case. More often than not, my writing setup consists of the iPad in a stand of some sort, and a bluetooth keyboard and pointing device. That last one is what I’d like to discuss today.

External pointing devices – mouse and trackpads – has worked with iPadOS for quite some time now. It’s something of a universal truth that a trackpad is the better choice, and with good reason. After all, you can recreate every swipe and gesture that you’d do on the iPad screen, on the trackpad’s surface. A mouse doesn’t have that, but they’re still supported. Are they then a reasonable alternative to trackpads?

📧 Switch to iPad #88 is available for paying subscribers now. Subscribe for $5/month, or $50/year. I’m still matching subscriptions with donations to Ukraine – we’re closing in on $1,000, which is both the limit and target, so please help.

Keychain now supports notes for your saved passwords

Keychain, the iCloud-powered password saving feature that’s built into Apple’s various operating systems, keeps evolving. As of iPadOS 15.4 (and its equivalents for other platforms), you can add a note for your saved passwords. This is done by going to the Settings app, then Passwords, and then tapping the password you want to change. There are some minor things you can do on this screen, such as setting up verification codes and easily go to the website in an in-app browser to change your password. However, the notes field is a new one, so that’s a nice addition.

Keychain really is a great feature. It’s got a long way to go before it competes with the likes of 1Passwords, in terms of storing and sharing other sensitive data, but for personal use, it’s great.

How important are the iPad speakers? (#87)

It’s Wednesday, and that means that paying subscribers are getting this week’s issue of the paid Switch to iPad newsletter. It starts like this:

I have a confession to make: I seldom use the speakers on any of my iPads. That’s true for my Macs over the years, too. It’s not that they’re bad speakers, any of them. On the contrary, Apple is best in class more often than not. Especially the iPad Pro speakers, with their four-point system, is lauded for being enough for most.

Except, I don’t agree.

So, this will be a letter about iPad speakers, and perhaps help you decide if they matter to you, as you consider a new iPad. Because we’re always considering new iPads, aren’t we?

📧 Yep, it’s all about the speakers in Switch to iPad #87. You need a paid subscription for this, which costs $5/month or $50/year.

Remember, I’m matching all subscriptions in March with a donation to UNICEF, for Ukraine, up to $1,000. We’re several hundreds of dollars in, which is lovely.

iPadOS 15.4 is available now

It’s time to update those iPads, folks. Oh, and you iPhone, Mac, Apple TV, HomePod, Apple Watch, and, err, yeah, that’s all of them.

The star of the show in iPadOS 15.4 is Universal Control, a feature that lets you connect your iPad to your Mac (or several Macs to each other), while using a singular input device. That’s right, it’s not like (the otherwise excellent) Sidecar feature, which makes your iPad act as a second screen for your Mac. With Universal Control, you’re still in every device’s respective operating system, while still being able to do things like drag-and-drop files between them. It’s all very cool, and I’ll have more on it in the future. And yes, if you recall this being mentioned before, know that it was an iPadOS 15 feature that got delayed.

There are also over 100 new emojis (if you count all the color variations). You can seen them all on Emojipedia.

Where to save that link, again? (#86)

Switch to iPad #86 has reached its subscribers. It starts like this:

I hope this letter finds you well, and that you have time to read it. If not, then feel free to save it in your read it later service of choice. Or maybe there’s something in here that you want to refer to in the future, something that you need to keep handy later on.

Where do you save those links?

In the old days, most links to articles and resources you wanted to refer to later ended up in various link-saving services. They weren’t really read it later tools, although they obviously could be. It was more akin to an extended bookmark folder, with tags and the like to keep your links organized. Delicious (originally, del.icio.us, so wonderfully web 1.0) and later Pinboard spring to mind.

I don’t use any of those services today, but I find myself needing to save the link for future reference, still. It’s tempting to just throw them in a read it later service because technically Pocket or Instapaper would work just fine. They have all the features needed, after all, with tagging and highlights, as well as decent search capability. But, to me, that’s not what a read it later app should do. I don’t want my GitHub link failing to load in a reader view, alongside that long exposé from The Atlantic, I want it someplace else.

I’ve been on a quest for some time, and maybe you have to. Let’s see where we’re at, and go from there, shall we?

📧 Switch to iPad #86 is a paid issue, so you need a valid subscription to read it. It’s $5/month, or $50/year, and there’s a free trial as well. Remember, I’m meeting all subscriptions with a donation to benefit the victims of the war in Ukraine, up to $1,000. Full details are here.

Apple lets you donate to UNICEF through the App Store

This was a nice touch, I think: Easy donations to UNICEF through the App Store, because of the war in Ukraine, obviously. It’s like buying any app, almost, with different levels of donations. Apple is headlining this on the App Store at the moment, although local variations could be a thing, I don’t know. Just tap the promo, pick an amount, and you’re good to go. You’ll get an App Store receipt as usual, and the money goes to the US branch of UNICEF.

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