iPhone Web Sites

In the news

iPhone J.D. - Fri, 07/21/2017 - 00:46

Apple updated iOS to version 10.3.3 this week.  You should update your iPhone and iPad for the same reasons I mentioned back when 10.3.2 came out; iOS updates always improve security.  In fact, Ben Lovejoy of 9to5Mac reports that one of the things fixed is the potential ability of a hacker who is close enough to your iPhone to exploit a flaw in the iPhone's Wi-Fi chip and wirelessly gain control of your iPhone.  Yikes!  Glad that one was fixed.  And now, the other news of note from the past week:

  • South Carolina attorney Justin Kahn discusses a recent update to the iAnnotate app (version 4.3) which lets you annotate two documents side-by-side.
  • John Gruber of Daring Fireball explains why you should not manually quit apps in iOS.  Sure, you can do it occasionally if an app is frozen or otherwise isn't working properly, but if you believe that you are saving memory or making your iPhone faster by quitting apps, you are wrong.
  • Jonny Evans of Computerworld shares over 50 iOS 10 tips, and there are some good ones on that list.
  • Cella Lao Rousseau of iMore reviews portable Apple Watch chargers.
  • When I purchased a 2017 Honda Accord earlier this year, I made sure to select CarPlay as an option.  I love CarPlay and I use it every time I drive.  Reese Counts of Autoblog reports that this Fall, Honda will start to sell the 2018 Honda Accord, with Apple CarPlay included in every model and a larger 8" display (up from 7" on the 2017 model).  It will also include a physical knob to control the volume instead of touchscreen volume controls (which can be hard to use).
  • There was a time when I would carry an iPhone, and iPad and an iPad mini all at the same time, but apparently that is nothing.  Ben Lovejoy of 9to5Mac reports that Chinese customs agent stopped a woman coming in from Hong Kong who had 102 iPhones strapped to her body.  (iPhones are cheaper in Hong Kong than in mainland China.)
  • David Pogue of Yahoo explores the idea of charging an iPhone wirelessly, and interviews the CEO of Energous, a company trying to do this.  The charge would be very slow (a trickle charge), and the technology seems far off, but someday this might actually work.
  • Ryan Christoffel of MacStories reviews the new CARROT Weather app, an app that gives you both the weather forecast and snarky banter.
  • We all like free WiFi, but at what cost?  Rheet Jones of Gizmodo reports that 22,000 people agreed to clean toilets to get WiFi ... because they didn't read the terms of service.
  • And finally, yesterday Apple updated its Clips app to version 1.1.  This first update to Clips adds some neat new features like new posters (an animated background on which you can place text), but the big new feature is the ability to add Disney/Pixar characters to your videos.  Here is an 11 second demo I created at my desk which didn't take much more than 11 seconds to make:

Categories: iPhone Web Sites

Using 1Password for websites with two-factor authentication

iPhone J.D. - Thu, 07/20/2017 - 16:09

A few days ago, 1Password was updated to improve the ability to use 1Password with sites that have a time-based, two-factor authentication code.  This is a useful feature of 1Password.  Here is why I recommend two-factor authentication in general, and how it and how it now works in 1Password on the iPhone or iPad.

Two-factor authentication is good

Two-factor authentication is a way to confirm your identity when you are logging in to a website.  Normally a website asks for your username and password, but your username is often easy for a hacker to learn (it might just be your public email address), and thus all a hacker needs to do is learn your password and he has access to your account with that website.  There are lots of different ways that a hacker could theoretically learn your password — such as if you use the same password at multiple sites (don't do that!) or if you have multiple password that are similar and the hacker can guess your pattern (don't do that either!) or if someone looks over your shoulder while you are typing in your password in a public spot (yikes!), etc.  With two-factor authentication, it is not enough for the hacker to have your username and password; he must also have access to a device in your possession (such as your iPhone) which displays a number that changes every 30 seconds.  If the hacker is in some foreign country across the globe, he won't have that, and his attempts to access your account will fail.

There are many different iPhone apps which can be used to display authentication numbers which change every 30 seconds.  1Password is a good one to use just because you naturally think of that app as a place to store login information.  But with the update this week, 1Password is even better than other apps because it can automatically put the number on your clipboard.  This makes two-factor authentication really fast to use.  And that's good because you get more security without a bottleneck that slows you down.

Here is how you use the feature. 

Configure a 1Password entry to use a one-time password

First, in 1Password, find your entry for the website in question, where you already have your username and password stored.  Tap Edit in the top right corner and scroll down until you see "Add new one-time password."  Tap that and you will see a new entry which has a QR code icon on it.

 

Next, on your computer, go to the website in question.  In this example, I'll use Backblaze, the service I use to automatically backup my home computer.  On the account settings area of the Backblaze website on my computer, I click on the option to turn-on two-factor authentication.  The website will then display a big QR code on my computer's monitor.  I tap the QR code icon in 1Password on my iPhone and use my iPhone's camera to scan the QR code.

Now my 1Password entry for Backblaze has a One-Time Password field with a six-digit number which changes every 30 seconds.  There is even a little timer on the right which counts down the seconds so I can see how long I have until the password changes.

Using 1Password with two-factor authentication

Now that the entry for a website has two-factor authentication configured, you can use it the next time that you access that website.  So back to my Backblaze example, whenever I want to access the Backblaze website on my iPhone, I tap the Action button at the bottom of the Safari window, then I select 1Password, I use my Touch ID fingerprint to confirm that I am really me, and then 1Password automatically types my username and my password on the website.

 

Next, the website will ask me for my authentication code, but I don't have to go back to the 1Password app to lookup that code.  Right after 1Password automatically entered my username and password, it pasted the six-digit code to my iPhone clipboard, and it briefly displayed a message that says "One-time password saved to the clipboard."  Thus, all I need to do is tap in the box and select paste, and the number is entered for me.

 

This new system is so much more convenient then having to manually go to another app to find the number and then going back into Safari to enter the number.

Although my focus here is iPhone/iPad, this new 1Password system works the same on your PC and Mac.  Just use 1Password on your computer to enter the username/password, and then use your computer to paste the number when you are asked to enter the six-digit code.  [UPDATE:  To be more clear, the current version of 1Password for Mac automatically copies that code so that it is ready for you to paste, just like iOS.  The current version of 1Password 6 for Windows (version 6.6.439) does not automatically copy the code, but you can right-click on the entry in the browser add-on to manually copy that code and then you can paste it into the Windows browser.  I presume that 1Password for Windows 6 will gain this feature in a future update.]

I currently have two-factor authentication in 1Password configured for Backblaze, Dropbox and Facebook, but I plan to add more websites in the future now that 1Password works so much better with two-factor authentication.

Categories: iPhone Web Sites

New information on your iPhone being searched by Customs at the border

iPhone J.D. - Mon, 07/17/2017 - 01:48

Taking an iPhone or iPad when you leave or enter the United States is a complicated issue for attorneys.  You are likely going to want to do work when you are abroad — especially if you are traveling for business, not pleasure — and thus it makes perfect sense to have your iOS device with you.  In fact, it can be a much better option than a computer, which can be more easily attacked by malware in a foreign country.  If you can get access to WiFi and you use VPN software like Cloak, you should be fairly safe.  The problem, however, is that U.S. customs agents as of late have been demanding to search mobile devices upon reentry into the country, and there are some reports that they will sometimes even copy the data from a device.  If you have confidential attorney-client communications or attorney work product, you don't want a stranger who works as a U.S. customs agent to have unfettered access.

To try to get more concrete information on the current state of affairs, Sen. Ron Wyden, a Democrat from Oregon who has a reputation of being a privacy advocate, recently sent a letter to Acting Commissioner Kevin McAleenan of Customs and Border Protection (CBP) with questions on the current policies.  I encourage you to read the full response as posted by the Washington Post, as well as the article by Brian Fung of the Post, but here are four parts of the response that jumped out a me.

First, CBP does sometimes search electronic devices in the possession of individuals entering the United States, but does so rarely — less than one-hundredth of one percent of travelers.  CBP will inspect devices of both non-citizens and U.S. citizens.

Second, if your device is locked, CBP can ask you to unlock your device so that they can search it.  If you refuse to do so, and if you are a U.S. citizen, CBP will still allow you to enter the country, but you may be delayed (so you may miss your connecting flight) and your device will likely be confiscated.  If you are not a U.S. citizen, failure to unlock your device could be a reason that CBP does not allow you to enter the United States.

Third, CBP takes the position that it has the authority to search anything that is on the device itself.  CBP asserts several justifications for searching devices, and you can probably guess them.  For example, CBP may look for contraband (such as child pornography), or information that could be a threat to national security (such as something related to the proliferation of nuclear weapons).

Fourth, CBP will not ask to access your information on remote servers.  Thus, they should not ask you for your password to Dropbox, Facebook, your law firm, etc.  However, if there is a local copy of any data synced to a remote server — such as local files in the Dropbox app on your iPhone — CBP can look at those documents.

All of this means that if you don't look too suspicious — which unfortunately might be determined based upon the color of your skin or the clothes that you are wearing — there is a very good chance that a customs agent will not ask to look at your phone at all.  My most recent experience with customs was just a few weeks ago when I was in a car and drove across the border to Canada and then drove back again.  The experience of re-entering the U.S. was incredibly quick and non-intrusive for me, just a few questions.  Then again, I was in a van with my wife and kids coming across the border next to Niagara Falls, so it was fairly obvious that we were just typical American tourists.

But if you are unlucky, customs may well ask you to unlock your iPhone or iPad so that they can search through your files.  You need to decide before your travel whether this risk is enough reason to not take your device in the first place.  The Electronic Frontier Foundation prepared an excellent document on this topic called Digital Privacy at the U.S. Border: Protecting the Data On Your Devices and In the Cloud.  According to the EFF, you can ask the border agent to withdraw the order that you unlock your device on the grounds that the device contains confidential and sensitive attorney-client communications and attorney-work product.  This might work.  But it might not, and in the process you are going to have explain to the agent in great detail what is on the device.

The EFF also cites a 2009 directive stating that border agents must consult with the CBP legal office before searching documents protected by the attorney-client privilege.

I wish I could conclude this post with easy answers, but it appears that there are none at the moment.  I don't know how you should weigh the usefulness of having your iPhone and iPad with you outside of the country versus the risk that a border agent will try to search the device as you enter the country.  And remember, we are just talking about U.S. border agents right now; you may also find yourself facing an official in another country who demands access to your device and who has no regard for the Rules of Professional Conduct or the Rules of Evidence governing privilege.

Categories: iPhone Web Sites

In the news

iPhone J.D. - Fri, 07/14/2017 - 00:43

Today at 10am Pacific / 1pm Eastern, legal tech consultant Brett Burney and New Orleans attorney Ernie Svenson are presenting a free webinar called Advanced Mobile Lawyering Tactics.  I have known Brett and Ernie for a long time, and both are excellent presenters and very knowledgeable on mobile technology.  According to a post on Brett's Apps in Law website, topics include:  file management, note taking, scanning documents and working with PDF files, legal research, mind-mapping, and security tips.  If you are in the Central time zone like I am, that means that you can learn some useful tips while you have lunch at your desk at Noon.  Click here to register for free.  And now, the news of note from the past week:

  • In an article for Macworld, Jason Snell explains how the new iPad Pro, especially when paired with the upcoming iOS 11, is an amazing device for getting work done
  • In another article for Macworld, Jeffery Battersby reviews Citrix ShareFile, a service that works on your computer and iOS device.  My law firm uses ShareFile and it works well for sharing large files.
  • In yet another article for Macworld, Glenn Fleishman explains how the ability of apps to track you (even when you want them to) will change in iOS 11.
  • Abhishek Kurve of Cult of Mac explains how, with iOS 11, you will get more free space on your iPhone or iPad.
  • Serenity Caldwell of iMore discusses what will be new when watchOS 4 for the Apple Watch is released later this year.
  • Steven Sande of Apple World Today reviews the iDevices Outdoor Switch, which brings HomeKit control to outdoor lights (and other things that you plug in outside).
  • Jordan Kahn of 9to5Mac reports that the Waze driving app now lets you record custom voice prompts "turn right," "turn left," etc. and share them with others.  Finally, you can have your spouse tell you what to do in your car.
  • And finally, Joanna Stern of the Wall Street Journal describes steps you can take — from easy to hard — to fix an old iPhone battery that doesn't do as good a job of holding a charge:

Categories: iPhone Web Sites

Review: Apple Smart Cover for 12.9" iPad Pro -- now available in leather

iPhone J.D. - Wed, 07/12/2017 - 00:04

On March 2, 2011, Apple introduced the iPad 2, Apple's first attempt to improve upon the iPad.  The iPad 2 itself was nicer because it faster, thinner and lighter.  But I was also excited about two new accessories.  First, Apple introduced an HDMI connector, letting you send 1080p video to a TV, and opening the door to higher-quality presentations.  (Having said that, it amazes me that, this many years later, I still encounter VGA more than HDMI when I give presentations using my iPad.)  Second, Apple introduced the Smart Cover, a device that could both protect the screen of the iPad and work as a stand.  Back in 2011, you could get either a polyurethane version for $39 or a leather version for $69.  I opted for the leather version, and I used leather Smart Covers for many years with multiple versions of the iPad and iPad Air.

When Apple came out with the larger 12.9" iPad Pro in the Fall of 2015, I bought a new Smart Cover to accommodate the new size.  I was curious if the extra weight of the 12.9" iPad Pro would make the Smart Cover less stable as a stand, but I was happy to discover that it worked just fine.  However, Apple only released a polyurethane version of the Smart Cover for the 12.9" iPad Pro.  Last month, when Apple released the second generation of the 12.9" iPad Pro, Apple also introduced the first 12.9" version of the leather Smart Cover.  So you can now choose between a 12.9" polyurethane version for $59 or a 12.9" leather version for $79.  (Both versions work with the first generation and second generation version of the 12.9" iPad Pro.)  Here are my thoughts if you are trying to decide between the two.

Smart Covers are a great idea

Smart Covers have been around for so many years that I suspect most of you have owned or at least tried one by now.  But for the sake of completeness, I will start by briefly noting why I like the Smart Cover so much as an iPad accessory.

First, it protects the screen.  The glass on the iPad is pretty strong and scratch-resistant anyway, but with a Smart Cover you never need to worry about a sharp object damaging the screen.  I also find that it makes the iPad easier to grip when carrying it, which provides further protection because I am less likely to drop my iPad.

Second, it gets out of the way when you don't need it.  The genius of the Smart Cover is that is uses magnets built-in to the side of an iPad.  Thus, it is easy to attach to the iPad, and easy to remove.  When I am using my iPad at work at my desk, I typically don't have the Smart Cover attached.  But whenever I pick up my iPad to take it to a meeting or another attorney's office, I always quickly attach it.

Third, it folds into a stand, in two different positions — one that keeps the iPad more flat with a slight rise in the back, great for using the Pencil or on-screen keyboard:

And one that keeps the iPad more upright, perfect for when you are looking at the screen more than touching it:

When I want my iPad upright for a more extended period of time, I actually prefer to use a dedicated stand to prop up my iPad so that I never have to worry about the iPad falling down, even if I push hard on the screen.  And for over a year now, I've been incredibly happy with the Simplex Tablet iPad Stand by Thought Out which I reviewed in 2016.  That device is only $30 and it is incredibly strong, and makes it easy to have my iPad propped up next to my computer so that I can use both at the same time.  But the Simplex is heavy enough that I only rarely move it outside of my office.  With the Smart Cover, I always have a stand with me, wherever I am, with no noticeable extra weight.

Polyurethane vs. Leather

Now you know why I recommend that attorneys get a Smart Cover for an iPad.  The remaining question is:  which one:  polyurethane or leather?  There are some differences, and the leather version is not always better even though it cost $20 more.

Strength.  As I noted above, back in 2015, I was worried that the extra weight larger 12.9" version of the iPad would make the Smart Cover less capable as a stand.  With the polyurethane version, that has not been a problem at all.  But the leather version, for some reason, is not quite as strong when I have the iPad in the more fully upright position.  Every time I did a side-by-side test, with the leather Smart Cover in stand mode on one of my 12.9" iPad Pros and the polyurethane on the other one, as I applied gradually more pressure both iPads, the leather Smart Cover would always collapse before the polyurethane version. 

Moreover, I have used the polyurethane version since the Fall of 2015 and it has only rarely failed as a stand — and when it did, it was often because I wasn't placing it on a flat surface, or I was applying what was really unreasonable pressure to the screen.  I've been using the leather Smart Cover for a few weeks now, and there have been two times when I felt the triangle of the stand start to slip as I was using it.  Admittedly, both times, I was probably applying more pressure than was necessary.  The magnets holding the Smart Cover to itself just seem a little bit less strong on the leather version.

I don't mean to suggest that the leather version doesn't work as a stand.  It does work, and it works well.  But the polyurethane version works better. 

Durability.  Since I started with the bad news about the leather version, I'll move on to the other potentially negative issue.  If you spill something on the polyurethane version, you can just wipe it off.  But with the leather version, you can potentially stain the leather.  I've never had this happen to me in my many years of using leather Smart Covers on a 9.7" iPad, but I've heard other folks mention it as a reason that they prefer the polyurethane version.

The two materials also wear differently.  Polyurethane maintains the same look over time.  Leather ages over time, and can change color, especially in areas where the oils from  your hands touch the case more often.  I actually consider this a feature of the leather version, not a shortcoming; to me, it gains personality over time.

Look and feel.  The main reason that I prefer the leather case is the way that it feels.  The polyurethane Smart Cover has a slightly sticky feel to it.  Even after using the polyurethane version for well over a year, I never really got used to it.  As soon as I went back to the leather version a few weeks ago, I was instantly happy to return to the feel of leather.  It feels great to the touch, the same way that leather seats in a car are nicer than seats with a plastic-y feel.

I also think that the leather looks much nicer too.

Colors.  For the older 9.7" or newer 10.5" version of the iPad, you get more color options with polyurethane.  I see that Apple currently sells seven 10.5" polyurethane colors:  Mist Blue, Pollen, Flamingo, White, Pink Sand, Midnight Blue and Charcoal Gray.  (You get eight options with the 9.7" Smart Cover.)  But with the 12.9" polyurethane Smart Cover, your only color choices are White and Charcoal Gray.  I'm not sure why Apple considers color so much less important with the larger model.

With the 12.9" leather Smart Cover, you get three color choices:  Saddle Brown, Midnight Blue and Black.  (The 10.5" leather Smart Cover has a fourth color:  Taupe.)

Ultimately, it doesn't matter how many different colors are offered.  All that really matters is whether there is a color that works for you.  I prefer a dark color, which is available in both leather and  polyurethane.  But I prefer the Black leather to the almost-but-not-quite-black Charcoal Gray polyurethane.  In the following picture. the polyurethane model is on top of the leather model:

Of course, if White, Saddle Brown or Midnight Blue is the best color for you, then you can make your selection accordingly.

Conclusion

After spending over a year using a polyurethane Smart Cover, I'm happy to be able to return to a leather Smart Cover.  For me, it looks and feels so much nicer.  I wish it was 100% as strong a stand as the polyurethane Smart Cover, but it is more than strong enough.  The extra $20 is worth it for something that I carry around every day, and thus feel and look at every day.

If you are in the market for a 12.9" iPad Pro, or really any iPad for that matter, I encourage you to get a Smart Cover.  They add protection and live up to the "smart" in their name by cleverly folding up into a stand and getting out of the way quickly when you don't need them.  And best of all, now you once again have a choice of leather or polyurethane for the 12.9" version.

Click here for the leather 12.9" Smart Cover from Apple ($79.00)

Click here for the polyurethane 12.9" Smart Cover from Apple ($59.00)

Categories: iPhone Web Sites

In the news

iPhone J.D. - Fri, 07/07/2017 - 23:23

The new iPad Pro has been out for a little while now, and as wonderful as that device is, we can't help but start thinking about the next big thing in the world of iOS.  We know that iOS 11 is coming soon, and you can even download a public beta now if you want to take it out for spin — but I don't recommend that you do so on a device that you use for work because Apple is still working out the kinks and many third party apps won't work with the beta version.  We also know that Apple will come out with new iPhones this Fall, presumably an iPhone 7s and an iPhone 7S Plus, so that is another next big thing to look forward to.  But for a while now, there has been a rumor that Apple will also release a premium model, perhaps called the iPhone Pro, giving Apple the ability to sell a more advanced iPhone with features that Apple cannot produce at scale and at a low enough cost to put the features in all iPhones sold.  John Gruber of Daring Fireball wrote a fantastic analysis of why it makes sense for Apple to produce an iPhone Pro, and Gruber even explains why the iPhone Pro will likely sell for $1200 to $1400.  And now, the news of note from the past week:

  • Kentucky attorney Stephen Embry discusses how the iPhone shook up the legal market when it was introduced ten years ago.
  • Florida attorney, and former U.S. Senator, George LeMieux discusses how the iPhone and other technology has changed the world, in an article for the Tampa Bay Times.
  • California attorney David Sparks reviews the Dash iPad Sleeve from Waterfield.
  • Security is a frequent topic here on iPhone J.D., and for good reason.  Unfortunately, even if you do everything right, you are still vulnerable.  Software developer Justin Williams tells the tale of how he got hacked even though he uses a password manager, two-factor authentication, etc. because an AT&T call center representative was tricked into resetting his iPhone even though the hacker didn't know the passcode.  Then the hacker was able to transfer money out of a PayPal account.  Ugh.
  • Speaking of security, at certain Hilton hotels, you can use your iPhone to unlock the door to your room.  As reported by Ben Lovejoy of 9to5Mac, Hilton announced that its system has now been used 11 million times at 1,700 hotels without a single security breach.
  • There is a solar eclipse in a few weeks that will be visible from the United States.  Jeff Byrnes of AppAdvice reviews the Solar Eclipse app from Redshift that gives you all of the information that you need to view the eclipse.
  • It was a little sad to see the report by Chance Miller of 9to5Mac that Jawbone is shutting down.  There was a time when the company was known for making some of the best headsets, and the Jawbone Jambox was a very popular speaker for a while.  I was a big fan of the Jawbone Prime, a Bluetooth headset I reviewed back in 2009.
  • In an article for TidBITS, Glenn Fleishman explains the new video and photo formats (HEVC and HEIF) coming in iOS 11.  "HEIF tries to combine all the best aspects of PNG, JPEG, and GIF, while dramatically improving compression and adding new features like the capability to store bursts of photographs."  Sounds good, and perhaps it will let Apple make Live Photos even better — a feature that is really fun when you take pictures of kids.
  • Leander Kahney of Cult of Mac looks it some of the earliest Apple prototype designs for the iPhone, many of which were revealed during discovery in the lawsuit between Apple and Samsung.
  • Who needs an iPhone when you can have a $2,500 Nokia phone which commemorates the meeting today between Trump and Putin?  Click, if you must, on this post by Devin Coldewey of TechCrunch for pictures and more information.
  • And finally, Apple started out its WWDC developer conference a few weeks ago by showing an amusing video of what the world might be like if all of our apps suddenly went away.  It's funny and worth watching if you haven't seen it yet:

Categories: iPhone Web Sites

In the news

iPhone J.D. - Fri, 06/30/2017 - 00:35

As we celebrate 10 years of the iPhone this week, Josh Centers describes an interesting new offer from Virgin Mobile in an article for TidBITS.  Virgin Mobile is the first carrier to go iPhone-exclusive.  And to get some attention for going iPhone-only, for the next month, if you purchase an iPhone from Virgin Mobile, you can get 12 months of service for just a dollar.  And after that, it is only $50 a month.  And that's for unlimited talk, text and data.  Virgin Mobile is owned by Sprint, so make sure that Sprint service is adequate in your area, but if it is, this is the best iPhone deal I've ever seen.  And now, the news of note from the past week:

  • John Gruber of Daring Fireball does a great job explaining how the iPhone changed the world.  "The iPhone was the product Apple had been founded to create — the epitome of everything both of Apple’s founding Steves stood for and obsessed about. The home run of all home runs."
  • Former Apple executive Jean-Louis Gassée shares some mind-numbing statistics associated with the insane number of iPhones sold during the first ten years along with other insightful thoughts on Apple.
  • In a video for the Wall Street Journal, former Apple executives Scott Forstall, Tony Fadell and Greg Christie discuss the origin of the iPhone.  It's a fantastic video with lots of inside information on how the iPhone came to be.  I highly recommend it.
  • Rich Stevens has a funny comic strip for iMore congratulating the iPhone on turning 10.
  • Chance Miller of 9to5Mac traces the significant events in iPhone history over the last 10 years.
  • I often think of my iPhone as my second brain, remembering the things that I could never remember, such as all of my passwords.  (Which reminds me, you need to hurry up to take advantage of the 1Password offer before it expires!)  But according to an article by Christopher Bergland in Psychology Today, a study showed that brain power is reduced when your iPhone is close by.  It looks like an interesting study, but I could only skim it because I was also using Twitter on my iPhone.
  • Joseph Keller of iMore reports that Cisco unveiled Security Connector this week, software that gives large companies more control over iPhones and iPads and increases security.
  • Abdel Ibrahim of WatchAware reports that apps should run faster and be more responsive in the next version of the operating system, watchOS 4.
  • Dan Moren of Six Colors shows and describes the current beta of iOS 11.
  • Ben Patterson offers some Safari tips in an article for Macworld.
  • Michael Brown of TechHive writes an extensive review of the Eero Home WiFi System 2, which provides WiFi throughout your house using mesh networking.
  • Earlier this month, Apple posted an amazing video called Earth featuring videos shot on iPhones, with narration by Carl Sagan from his book Pale Blue Dot. 
  • And finally, Joanna Stern created a fun video showing, from a first person perspective, what it is like to try to use the original, first generation iPhone in 2017.  Amazing how far we have come:

Categories: iPhone Web Sites

Review: iPad Pro 12.9" (2nd generation 2017) -- an incredible tablet for lawyers

iPhone J.D. - Tue, 06/27/2017 - 00:37

In November 2015, Apple started selling the 12.9" iPad Pro. the first iPad sold by Apple with a screen larger than the 9.7" screen that had been around since the iPad was introduced in 2010.  This was the only Apple product I had ever used that I grew to love but didn't love at first.  Usually, I can tell fairly quickly if a product is right for me.  The thing that I grew to love most about the product — the large screen — was also the thing that held me back at first.  For the first week or so it just felt too big and heavy as compared to the iPad I had been using for five years.  However, once I got used to it, I never wanted to go back to a smaller iPad. 

This month, Apple introduced the second generation of the iPad Pro 12.9" and the primary improvements are a better screen, speed and a better camera.  None of these are critical improvements over the previous model, so attorneys using the first generation version of the iPad Pro don't need to run out and upgrade.  But if you are still using an earlier model of the iPad such as the iPad Air, and especially if you are still using something pre-dating the iPad Air, the new iPad Pro is light years better than what you are using.

What remains great

Because I expect that virtually all attorneys considering the new iPad Pro 12.9" will be upgrading from an iPad Air 2 or earlier model, let me begin by discussing what is so great about this latest iPad even though it is the same as 2015 version of the iPad Pro.

First, all models of the iPad Pro support the Apple Pencil.  Yes, it costs $99, and that is more expensive than styluses that you can buy from third parties (my favorite of which remains the $22 Adonit Jot Pro which I reviewed here).  But there is really no comparison between the Apple Pencil and any other stylus.  Because the Apple Pencil and iPad Pro are designed from the ground up to work together, the Pencil does a fantastic job of writing on the iPad screen with virtually no lag.  Check out my 2015 review for the many reasons that I love the Pencil, but perhaps most telling is that I continue use the Pencil almost every single day at work.  I use it to take handwritten notes, to annotate briefs of opposing counsel, to highlight and annotate cases during legal research, and more.

Second, the larger screen of the 12.9" model makes it so much easier for me to get work done, sometimes when I am using the iPad next to my computer, other times when I am using my iPad instead of a computer.  The larger screen is better for reading documents on the iPad.  Indeed, in portrait mode, letter-sized documents are essentially full-size.  So whether I am reading briefs, looking at the fine print in contracts, or just admiring a great picture of my kids, the screen size is incredible, and I believe is worth the tradeoff of carrying an iPad that is bigger and heavier (1.5 pounds versus 1 pound).

Third, iPad Pro models are much faster than earlier iPads, making everything more responsive.  I can flip through the pages of large PDF files easily.

I'll mention a fourth reason, although it doesn't apply to me.  Sometimes it is nice to use an external keyboard with an iPad.  If you prefer a keyboard that is built-in to a cover, such as Apple's Smart Keyboard, the larger size means that you can have a full-size keyboard just like on your computer.  This isn't an issue for me because I prefer to use Bluetooth keyboards, which are stand-alone and can be whatever size you want.  But lots of folks tell me that this is a reason that they like the first generation iPad Pro 12.9"

These are all reasons to love the second generation iPad Pro 12.9" too.  But there is more.

Better screen

My favorite feature of the second generation iPad Pro is the screen.  It is better in three different ways.

First, the new iPad Pro uses something that Apple calls ProMotion.  The technical detail is that it can refresh the screen at 120Hz, whereas the first generation iPad Pro refreshed at a maximum speed of 60Hz.  What this means is that everything moves incredibly smoothly on the screen.  When you flick through pages of a brief, it doesn't look like an animation of going from one page to another page; it looks like you are actually moving pages.  When you move between apps, the process is amazingly smooth.  Yes, this is largely eye-candy, but it is incredibly nice to use, and as a side benefit makes the iPad feel more responsive.

ProMotion also makes the Apple Pencil even better because the iPad can "draw" on the screen twice as fast.  Don't get me wrong, the Apple Pencil worked amazingly well with the first generation iPad Pro.  But with the second generation iPad Pro. the illusion that the Pencil is actually drawing on the screen is virtually perfect.  It's like you can "see" the ink flowing from the Pencil onto the iPad's screen.

Second, the second generation 12.9" gains the same screen technology introduced in 2016 when Apple unveiled the 9.7" version of the iPad Pro.  Using something called DCI-P3 (the same standard used for theatrical projection and in 4K UHD televisions), colors are deeper and the screen is brighter.  And with TrueTone (an optional feature you can enable in Settings), the new iPad Pro senses the light around you and adjusts the white balance automatically.  Thus, whether you are in a room with a more yellow light or a more blue light, colors on the screen (especially white) look more appropriate.  If you use your iPad outside, the brighter screen (600 nits versus 400 nits for the first generation) makes it easier to see the screen even in sunlight.

Third, the new screen also supports HDR Video, a standard while lets darker areas look truly dark while brighter colors look truly bright.  Today, there isn't much HDR Video content.  Last year, Netflix added HDR video that could work with certain televisions, and hopefully it won't be long before Netflix brings this to the new iPad Pro models.  I've heard folks say that a TV with HDR looks even better than a 4K TV.  My understanding is that we will have to wait for iOS 11 later this year before the new iPad Pro can take advantage of HDR video, but suffice it to say that the second generation iPad Pro is ready for the future.

Even when playing high-quality non-HDR videos, the colors look much better on the second generation iPad Pro than the first generation iPad Pro.  I did many tests when I played the same video on both iPads at the same time.  I looked at my older iPad and thought that the video looked great.  Then I looked at the newer iPad and the colors looked much more vibrant — and suddenly my first generation iPad didn't seem so great anymore.

Faster

I thought my first generation iPad Pro was pretty fast.  This new one is screaming fast.  There is noticeably less lag when working with huge documents, using Safari to search the web is faster, switching applications is faster ... everything is much more responsive.  This is great today, but with the new multi-tasking features of iOS 11, this speed increase will be even more valuable as iOS 11 does more.

I've been using this new iPad Pro while researching and drafting several major briefs over the last few days, and I really love how quickly I can move around from app to app, and how quickly I can scroll through documents.  It's really nice.  When the iPad doesn't slow me down, I feel even more productive.

Better camera

In the past, the camera on an iPad was always lacklaster as compared to the newest cameras on the newest iPhones.  But now, the iPad Pro has the same great camera that is on the iPhone 7, and even gains a flash.  (It doesn't have the dual-camera system found on the iPhone 7 Plus.)

My main use of a camera at work is scanning documents.  In the past, I would always use my iPhone to take the picture because it had a better camera and then transfer the picture over to my iPad.  Now, I can just use my iPad to get a great picture.

But the main reason that I'm interested in the better camera is for using the iPad just for fun.  No, I don't plan to be one of those people who walks around with a huge iPad taking pictures, and I'm still amazed how often I see that happen.  But what excites me is that at Apple's developer conference earlier this month, Apple previewed new and powerful augmented reality tools which developers can use to create amazing experiences.  A demo showed a virtual animated 3D village sitting on a real table, and you could move an iPad around the table to see everything in amazing detail.  The quality was amazing.  I'm not yet sure how developers will use this technology, but I have no doubt that it will be fun and impressive.  The high quality camera on the second generation iPad Pro, along with the faster processors inside, will make the augmented reality experience all the more realistic.  My hope is that in just a few months, we will start to see some cool stuff.

Etc.

There are a few other improvements.  First, Touch ID works better and faster, with the iPad finally gaining the second generation Touch ID that was introduced with the iPhone 6s.

If you get the cellular version of the iPad Pro, it gets better reception.  I myself prefer saving money and getting the WiFi version; I can always just tether to my iPhone when I don't have access to WiFi.

There are also new memory options.  When the first generation iPad Pro was introduced in 2015, you had a choice between 32 GB and 128 GB, and I thought that the 128 GB was the natural choice for most lawyers.  Apple added a 256 GB option in March, 2016.  With the second generation iPad Pro, the choices are 64 GB, 256 GB and 512 GB.  64 GB (at $799) will be enough for many lawyers, but if you want to put what will seem like unlimited documents on your iPad Pro, and especially if you want to put lots of photos and videos on the device and want to future-proof, I think that spending an extra $100 for 256 GB makes good sense, and that is what I purchased.  For $1,099, you can now get a new 512 GB option.  That seems like overkill to me, but if you have grand plans to download lots of HDR video (in the future, once it becomes available) and want to spend the extra money on getting the most capacity, well then Apple has you covered.

One thing that hasn't changed is the Lightning to USB cord and charger that come in the box.  I realize that most folks are still using a computer with traditional USB and, for now at least, Apple wants to be compatible with that.  But as was also true with the first generation iPad Pro, if you purchase a USB-C Power Adapter ($49) and USB-C to Lightning Cable ($25), both of which I reviewed here, you can charge an iPad Pro much, much faster.  It is a shame that you need to spend an extra $75 to get the best charging option, especially since you need to spend an extra $99 to get the Apple Pencil which I consider essential for most lawyers use an iPad Pro.

Conclusion

The second generation iPad Pro is better than the first generation iPad Pro in the ways that matter most for attorneys using an iPad to get work done — how the screen looks, how fast and responsive the system is, and how it works with the Apple Pencil.  If you are using a first generation iPad Pro, don't get too jealous because your iPad is almost as good.  You don't need to upgrade.  But if you are using an older model of the iPad, the iPad Pro will be a major improvement and will help you to be much more productive with your device.  Plus it will be a lot more enjoyable to use.

After using the 12.9" screen for 19 months, I wouldn't want to go back to the smaller screen.  It's a big change at first and takes a week or two to get used to, so give yourself time before you decide if it is right for you.  Remember, Apple has a 14-day, no-questions-asked return policy, so if it still seems too big for you after 10 days, you can always swap it out for the smaller version.  But I love the larger screen.

If you think that the smaller size if better for you, the good news is that the smaller iPad Pro now has a 10.5" screen instead of a 9.7" screen, and thanks to a thinner bezel, Apple packed the 10.5" screen into a device that doesn't feel much bigger than the traditional iPad size.  California attorney David Sparks — who literally wrote the book on getting work done with an iPad many years ago — wrote on his MacSparky website that he is trying out the 10.5" screen to see if it works for him.  I'll be interested to see if he sticks with the smaller size, but I'm confident that I made the right decision for me.

Perhaps the best part of this new device is that the best is yet to come.  The iPad is going to get major improvements once iOS 11 comes out in a few months.  Older iPads may struggle to keep up with the new features, and some new features won't even work with some older models, but the second generation iPad Pro will be more than up for the task with its improved screen and faster processor.  So as much as I am enjoying using this new iPad today, I have no doubt that it will be even better this Fall.

Categories: iPhone Web Sites

In the news

iPhone J.D. - Fri, 06/23/2017 - 01:19

Next week we will celebrate the 10th anniversary of the iPhone going on sale.  On June 29, 2007, about six months after Steve Jobs first previewed the iPhone, long lines formed to be among the first to use this revolutionary device.  The idea of a smartphone without a physical keyboard seemed insane to many, and the first generation of the iPhone was extremely limited, but it still forever changed not only the cellphone industry, but the entire technology sector.  In an article for BackChannel on Wired, Steven Levy talks about being one of only four reviewers to try out an iPhone before they went on sale to the public.  (The others were Walt Mossberg who was with the Wall Street Journal, David Pogue who was with the New York Times, and Ed Baig of USA Today.)  And now, the recent news of note:

  • I bought the 12.9" version of the new iPad Pro.  I'll have a full review soon, but in short the speed is amazing and the improved screen is very nice.  California attorney David Sparks decided to switch from his prior 12.9" version to the new 10.5" version, and wrote a review after one week with the new iPad.
  • TranscriptPad was updated to version 2.3.0 and adds two great new features.  First, the app can now create impeachment reports.  Second, the app can now create a report with marked testimony in chronological order instead of sorted by issue code.  A blog post on the Lit Software website explains these two new features.
  • ExhibitView for iPad was updated to version 7 not that long ago, featuring retina graphics and more printing options.  Click here for more information.
  • In an article for Macworld, Jason Snell explains why typing is much better on the 10.5" iPad than the former 9.7" version, even though that size difference seems minor.
  • In an article for Six Colors, Snell explains what is different between the original 12.9" iPad Pro and the 2017 edition.
  • If you get a new iPad (or iPhone), you might decide to hand over your old device to a child.  Ben Patterson of Macworld offers advice for things to do before giving your iOS device to a child.
  • In a two hour interview for the Computer History Museum, five folks talk about the creation of the iPhone.  The first hour features iPhone Engineers Nitin Ganatra, Scott Herz, and Hugo Fiennes.  The second hour features Scott Forstall, the iPhone software team leader, in what is I believe his first public discussion of working at Apple since he left the company.
  • The CarPlay Life website discusses what is new for CarPlay in iOS 11.
  • David Pogue of Yahoo identifies some of the most interesting new features in iOS 11.
  • Juli Clover of MacRumors discusses some of the interesting smaller features of iOS 11.
  • Michael Simon of Macworld discusses what is new about watchOS 4.
  • Dan Moren of Six Colors reviews an iClever ergonomic keyboard that folds in half.  When I travel, I still enjoy using a different iClever foldable keyboard I reviewed last year.
  • If you currently pay $9.99 a month for Apple Music, Chance Miller of 9to5Mac reports that you can now save yourself some money by changing to $99.99 a year.  I don't yet see an annual rate for a family plan.
  • Apple is now selling a new Pride Edition of the Apple Watch woven nylon band for $49, as explained by Lory Gil of iMore.  Although this band features six colors, they start at red and end at purple; even so, it sort of reminds me of the six colors of the original Apple logo, which started at blue and went to green.
  • And finally, I recently took a road trip with my kids, and the day that I got home, the Memories feature of Photos was nice enough to put together a great video containing still photos, live photos, and short video clips from my trip.  The automatically-created version was great, but it was easy to make some small edits to it, removing some photos I didn't like and adding others that I love, and within minutes I had a fantastic slideshow that, before Memories, would have taken me hours to create.  And as nice as that was for a recent trip, I also love how Memories creates videos of older photos that I haven't seen in a while.  If you take pictures with your iPhone and don't yet pay attention to the Memories feature, you should do so.  And to remind you to do so, Apple recently released a new commercial for Memories, showing what it might have taken in the old days to get similar results:

Categories: iPhone Web Sites

Using an iPad to draft an appellate oral argument

iPhone J.D. - Tue, 06/20/2017 - 21:57

Last year, I wrote a post about using an iPad to prepare for oral argument.  In that post, I described how useful it is to have all of the record on appeal, cases, and briefs on an iPad so that you have everything in one place as you prepare for oral argument.  But I noted in that post that I had never actually used an iPad to create and hold the outline of my oral argument — for that, I had always relied upon paper.  Earlier this month, I had an oral argument before the U.S. Fifth Circuit and I decided to completely use an iPad for oral argument, even for preparing my outline.  It worked really well for me.

Preparing the outline

If you are the sort of person who writes out every word of your oral argument, such that if you don't get any questions from the bench you essentially read from a script, then this post isn't written for you.  I've seen some talented folks get away with this, but that's not at all how I prepare.  I prepare issues that I want to discuss in a rough outline form, with key cases and quotes for the various points that I want to make, and as I prepare for oral argument I am constantly rearranging the order of items and adding and cutting items.

In the past, I just used Microsoft Word (mostly on my computer) to create my outlines.  This time, I decided to make my notes more visual by using the GoodNotes app on my iPad.  GoodNotes is the app that I use to take notes in meetings, but it works well for anything that you want to write down, and works especially well if you are using an Apple Pencil.  (The Apple Pencil stylus is far better than any other stylus on the iPad.) 

First, GoodNotes made it easy to add color to my outline to make certain items stand out.  And whenever I wanted to underline something, I would first tap the shape tool (the icon with the box/circle/triangle) to ensure that my line would be perfect.  The same tool made my rectangles and circles perfect.

Second, unlike typing an outline in Microsoft Word in which the order is strictly top to bottom, GoodNotes gave me the full page as a canvas so I could put some items on the side, put some items in their own box, etc.  I found it much easier to visualize and organize my argument this way.

Third, GoodNotes does a great job of moving items around.  If I start to write an argument on one part of the page and them want to move it to another part of the page, I can just tap on the lasso tool at the top, circle the text with my finger or my Apple Pencil, and then drag the text to its new location.

If that new location is on a different page, tap in the middle of an item after you have circled it with the lasso.  This brings up a menu with the option to cut (or copy) whatever you circled.  You can then go to another page and hold down your finger on the page for a second to see the option to paste.

During the time that I prepared for my oral argument, I doubt that many items stayed in the place where I originally wrote them in GoodNotes.  I frequently moved things around to expand upon arguments or separate arguments onto different pages.  And as I got closer to my oral argument and found myself condensing my outline, it was easy to merge items onto a single page.

Fourth, you can add images into notes with GoodNotes, and I used this for key quotes from opinions.  All of the important cases related to my appeal were located in a folder in GoodReader.  I found the part of the opinion I wanted to quote (sometimes using GoodReader to highlight part of the text) and then I took a screen shot (pressing the home and power buttons at the same time).  This put a screen shot in the Photos app.  In that app, I cropped to just the words that mattered to me.  Finally, in GoodNotes I tapped the plus sign in a circle at the top let to add an image, selected the image from my Photos, and sized it appropriately on my page.

When I was finished, I had an outline on just a few pages containing everything that I wanted to be sure to say in oral argument, plus a few more pages of notes on issues that I would address only if asked.  Most importantly, in the process of editing and refining my outline, I saw my outline so much that I memorized it.

The day of oral argument

On the day of oral argument, the only thing that I needed at counsel table was my iPad and Apple Pencil, plus a legal pad and pen to take notes when my opponent was speaking on items that I wanted to address in rebuttal.  As a backup, before I went to court, I used GoodNotes to convert my outline pages to PDF and printed them out so that I could use them in case my iPad died in court or something like that.  Those paper notes ended up staying in my briefcase, unused, but I felt better knowing that they were there.

I went to Settings -> Display & Brightness and changed Auto-Lock from my normal 5 minutes to Never just to make sure that my iPad wouldn't lock up while I was at the podium.

When it was my turn to speak, I brought my iPad to the podium.  By that point, I had memorized everything in my notes so as a practical matter I mostly didn't need to look down at my iPad, but it was a nice crutch knowing it was there.  And when a judge asked a question to which I wanted to respond by quoting an opinion, it was nice to swipe to the page of my notes where I had the image from the opinion so that I could read verbatim the words from the relevant prior opinion.

After I gave my opening argument and it was time for my opponent to speak, I switched my iPad to GoodReader so that I could quickly look at a brief or opinion as necessary while my opponent spoke.  Sure enough, he did at one point reference another case in a way that I believed was not accurate, so I was able to quickly find that opinion and skim it (I had previously highlighted and annotated all of the key cases) and confirm what the case was about.  During my rebuttal, I gave the judges my interpretation of the opinion, and had the opinion open in GoodReader just in case I needed to refer to specific language. 

Conclusion

As is often the case, despite all of my moving my arguments around in my notes to come up with the perfect order of presentation, almost 100% of my time at the podium was consumed by answering questions in whatever order the judges tossed the questions at me.  Nevertheless, the time that I had spent ordering my arguments and then rethinking that order helped me to move on to logical follow-up points after answering a question.

Whether I win or lose this appeal, I really liked using GoodNotes to prepare for oral argument.  My notes were much more colorful and visually interesting than ever before, and that mattered because it made it easier for me to remember everything on the pages.  Many times as I was speaking I could easily "see" in my head my notes, remembering, for example, the three cases that I wrote in the bottom right hand corner of a page.  So without even looking at the notes, the notes were helping me as I spoke to the judges.

There are many great drawing apps on the iPad, and you should use whatever app you are comfortable using.  But for me, GoodNotes was incredibly helpful as I prepared for and gave my oral argument.

Click here to get GoodNotes ($7.99): 

Click here to get GoodReader ($4.99): 

Categories: iPhone Web Sites

Can you video record a deposition using your iPhone or iPad?

iPhone J.D. - Tue, 06/13/2017 - 23:10

Las Vegas attorney Michael Lowry of Wilson Elser publishes the Compelling Discovery website, a blog devoted to discovery in civil litigation.  He recently researched and wrote about an issue that I had never thought about before:  can an attorney save the cost of hiring a deposition videographer and just use an iPhone or iPad to create a video of a witness in a deposition?  Perhaps this is something that you want to consider doing.  But this is definitely something that any civil litigator should think about now, so that if opposing counsel tries to do it, you will have thought about the proper response.

You'll want to read Lowry's six-part blog entry to get the full answer, but in short, it seems that most courts won't allow the practice because the attorney creating the video doesn't constitute a "an officer appointed or designated under Rule 28" pursuant to Fed. R. Civ. P. 30(b)(5)(A).  But reading the rule, I'm not sure that the issue is quite that clear, and Lowry notes other courts that have allowed the practice, especially if the objecting party cannot show that there is anything wrong with the video recording.

If you want to use an iPhone or iPad to record a deposition, make sure that you notice the deposition as a video deposition, and I would be upfront in the notice about what you plan to do.  Better yet, consider reaching an agreement with the other counsel in the case that the deposition will be recorded this way with everyone's consent and with everyone having access to the video when the deposition is finished.  If everyone agrees to the practice, this would definitely reduce the cost of a video deposition.  On the other hand, if something goes wrong with the recording, you have nobody to blame but yourself.

If opposing counsel tries to do this and you do not agree, make sure that you object as soon as possible — perhaps even in response to the notice itself, if it is clear from the notice that this is what is being contemplated.  And this might be one of those rare instances in which you need to get a federal magistrate judge or state judge on the phone before the deposition begins.

It's an interesting issue.  As iPhones and iPads become even better at taking videos, I can see more people opting to go this route.  And who knows, as Siri and similar technology gets better, how long will it be before your iPhone can create a real-time transcript of your deposition, replacing the need for a court reporter?

Categories: iPhone Web Sites

Why lawyers will love iOS 11 on the iPad

iPhone J.D. - Tue, 06/06/2017 - 01:17

Yesterday, Apple had one of its largest Keynote addresses ever, announcing a ton of software improvements and new hardware.  With iOS 11, the iPhone will be more fun and satisfying to use than ever.  The new HomePod speaker due later this year is Apple's answer to both the Sonos and Amazon Echo devices.  New iPads will be available next week, boasting faster speed, better screens, improved support for the Apple Pencil, and a new 10.5" size that is very close to the size of a traditional 9.7" iPad but features a much larger screen thanks to a smaller bezel. 

But today, I want to focus on one set of new features in iOS 11 (available for free this Fall) which will be incredibly useful for attorneys who use an iPad in their law practice, whether it be an existing iPad or one of the newest models due next week.  In short, iOS 11 adds more professional iPad features than we have ever seen before, and the gap between an iPad and a "real" computer is getting thinner than the bezel on the new 10.5" iPad.  Here are the new features that were announced yesterday.

New dock

The current dock on the iPad can hold just six app icons.  In iOS 11, the dock can hold many more icons.  I'm not sure of the limit, but in the demo yesterday I saw as many a 14 apps in there at a time.  And the last app on the right wasn't even something that the user added; it is a predictive spot in which the iPad shows an app that it thinks you might use because, for example, you recently used it on your iPad or iPhone.

You can see the dock in any app by swiping up from the bottom.  And with so many apps in the dock, you can quickly switch from app to app without having to go back to the home screen first.  This allows you to be even more productive as you switch between apps on your iPad.  I am constantly switching between Microsoft Word, GoodReader, Mail, Safari, and many other apps as I get work done on my iPad, so it will be great to be able to work even faster.

But having so many app icons on the dock is even more useful because of the next major improvement...

Improved split screen

Apple introduced some basic multitasking features in iOS 9, such as the ability to have two apps on the screen at the same time.  I often find it useful to look at an exhibit on one side of the screen while I am typing on the other side of the screen.

Multitasking in iOS 11 is far more impressive.  First, you can drag any app from the dock to see it on the side of the screen in slide over mode, where it hovers in a window over your main app so that you can quickly see or do something.  And you can snap that app into place to have a split screen view similar to what was added in iOS 9.

App Switcher with Spaces

Swiping up from the bottom of the iPad screen in iOS 11 brings up the Dock.  But if you keep swiping up, you see the new App Switcher.  The App Switcher shows a new and improved control panel (more on that in a minute) but also shows other running apps so that you can switch to one of them.

Or, you can switch to more than one of them.  With iOS 11, the iPad remembers if you have a space in which you have one app on the left and one app on the right, so you can switch to a space with both of those apps where they are supposed to be.  So you might have one space in which Microsoft Word is on the left and GoodReader is in the right showing an exhibit.  You might have another space in which Mail is on the left and Safari is on the right so that you can write an email while reading information on a website.  The new App Switcher shows each of these spaces so that you can quickly select the pairing for the work that you are doing.

Drag and Drop

In iOS 9, it is frustrating to see something on the left side of your screen that you want to put on the right side of the screen and not be able to just drag from one side to the other — such as dragging a picture or text from Safari into a Microsoft Word document.  Or dragging a URL from Safari into an email.  iOS 11 adds this ability.

But that is just the beginning. You can select one object and then tap additional objects to select more than one object to drag at one time, such as multiple pictures.

You can also drag and drop to an app that isn't currently on the screen — dragging across spaces.  Apple showed an example yesterday of selecting multiple pictures in the photos app, then using your other hand to drag up from the bottom of the screen to bring up the App Switcher, and then dragging those photos into another app that wasn't even on the screen when you started.

We've all been using Drag and Drop on computers for a very long time, so I knew that Drag and Drop would come to the iPad one day, but I wasn't sure how Apple would make this work on a touch-based interface.  The system that Apple previewed yesterday seems to work incredibly well, making very complicated steps look simple.  This is a new feature that I expect to be using frequently.

QuickType Keyboard

With the iOS 10 on-screen keyboard, you tap a key to type the letter on that key.  iOS 11 adds a new QuickType Keyboard which shows at the top of many keys an alternate character that you can type, such as punctuation, by swiping down on a key instead of taping the key.  This saves you time because you don't have to first tap the ?123 to switch to the alternative keyboard with punctuation symbols.

Files

One of the stumbling blocks for getting work done on an iPad has been the lack of a file system.  I feel like this is especially true for attorneys — our job constantly involves working with multiple documents, whether you are a transactional attorney or a litigator.  Many of us get around the lack of a file system in iOS 10 by using a service like Dropbox, and perhaps even an app like GoodReader to sync multiple folders from Dropbox to the iPad so that they are always on the iPad.  But this was always an imperfect solution because items in those folders are not always easy to access in other apps.

In iOS 11, Apple is introducing the new Files app.  It supports folders, folders within folders, a grid view or a list view, the ability to designate folders as favorites for easy access, the ability to search for files, the ability to tag files with a color and label, and the ability to sort by name, file size, date or tags.  It has a Recents view to show all of the files you accessed most recently.  It can work with files stored on the iPad itself or files stored in iCloud, Dropbox, Box, Microsoft OneDrive, Google Drive, and the Adobe Creative Cloud.  You can either start in the Files app by selecting a file to work with, or you can start in some other app and end up in Files.  For example, you might have an email attachment that you want to drag into the Files app to put it into a folder.

You can also swipe up from the bottom of the screen so that the Dock appears and then tap and hold on the icon for the Files app to see recent documents.  If one of those recent documents is the one that you want, you can drag the document directly from the Dock into an app.

Create PDF

I recently showed you how, in iOS 10, you can use the Print function to turn an email or other document into a PDF file on the iPad.  In iOS 11, you can do this more directly with a new Create PDF button in the menu that appears when you tap the share button (the box with the arrow coming out of it).

Create Screenshot

You have long been able to create a screenshot of whatever is on an iPad (or iPhone) screen by pressing the home button and the power button at the same time.  In iOS 11, when you create a screenshot, you'll see a small thumbnail preview at the bottom left corner of the screen.  Tap that preview to bring up the new screenshot editor, where you can crop and annotate the image.

The new cropping feature is a big improvement over iOS 10, where you would have to take the screenshot, then switch into the Photos app, then locate and open the image, then switch to the editor mode, then select the crop tool and then crop the image.  In iOS 11, when you see something on part of your screen that you want to quickly send to someone else, it will be much faster.  If you see something on a website that you want to show to a colleague, you can take a screenshot, quickly crop to the important part, and then email that cropped image.

Apple Pencil integration

In iOS 10, the Apple Pencil is the best way to draw on an iPad, whether you are taking notes, circling and underlining a document, or just doodling a picture.  In iOS 11, you can do even more with the Apple Pencil.  Just about anywhere that you can work with a PDF file or a screenshot, you can use the Pencil to annotate in iOS 11's expanded Markup option.  Apple calls this Instant Markup because as soon as your Pencil starts to draw on a document, you are instantly annotating the document.

You can also use the Pencil in the Mail app so that you can easily put a sketch in the middle of an email.  In the demo that Apple showed yesterday, the sketch appears inline with the message.  I'm not yet sure if other mail software, such as Microsoft Outlook, keeps the sketch inline with the message or just adds the sketch as an attached image file.

When you write notes using the Pencil in Apple's Notes app, the Notes app now automatically converts your handwriting into text so that you can search for the text.  And if you use a Pencil to tap on your iPad's lock screen, it automatically opens the Notes app for you.  (Speaking of the Notes app, it now also features a document scanner, but for those of us who have been using apps like Scanner Pro or ScanBot for many years, this isn't all that impressive.)

Control Center

In iOS 11, the Control Center on the iPad (and iPhone) is much improved.  I mentioned above that if you swipe up from the bottom of the screen you will first see the Dock, and then as you continue swiping you will see the new App Switcher.  On the right side of that same screen, you will see the Control Center.  Unlike iOS 10 where Control Center functions were spread across several screens so you have to swipe left and right to get to the one you want, in iOS 11 all of the  main Control Center functions are visible at once.  If you 3D touch on a set of features on the iPhone or long press on the iPad, you can open up a set of controls to see even more features.

This design makes it faster to access the Control Center features that you want.  This design also lets Apple put even more power into Control Center, such as the ability to toggle on or off cellular data, AirDrop receiving, and Personal Hotspot.  You can even customize the Control Center to add the buttons that you want.  The improved Control Center can save you from having to open the Settings app and hunt down a feature, and thus can save you time.

Conclusion

These new features in iOS 11 will let attorneys and others be much more productive with an iPad.  Most of these functions will also work on an iPhone, but you do even more with them on the large iPad screen.  With iSO 11, you can more easily work with multiple apps at one time, more easily move information between apps, more easily access and share files, and more easily annotate with the Apple Pencil.  I am incredibly excited to try out these new features, and it will be fantastic to have these features available to iPad users this Fall.

Categories: iPhone Web Sites

WWDC Keynote is today

iPhone J.D. - Mon, 06/05/2017 - 01:05

Today, Apple begins its Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) in San Jose, CA.  At 10am Pacific / 1pm Eastern, Apple executives will give a Keynote address that will likely include a preview of the next version of the iPhone/iPad operating system, perhaps also a preview of the next watchOS, and perhaps also new hardware products — maybe a new iPad, or a new stand-alone Siri device?  Infinite speculation is possible between now and 10am Pacific.  Jason Snell of Six Colors wrote about what he hopes to see at WWDC, and I found myself nodding at every paragraph of that article; in an article for Macworld, Snell wrote about what he actually expects to see announced today.

If you want to watch the two hour presentation as it happens, you can watch a live stream here.  I won't be able to do so because I have an oral argument before the U.S. Fifth Circuit this morning  However, when my argument is over, I'm glad that there will be lots of iPhone-related news to think about to distract me from obsessing over every question that was asked by the panel of judges.

Categories: iPhone Web Sites

In the news

iPhone J.D. - Fri, 06/02/2017 - 01:31

The big news of this week was that it is almost next week.  On Monday, Apple kicks off its annual conference for developers called WWDC.  And at 10am Pacific on Monday, Apple will hold a Keynote address to kick off the conference.  This is the time when Apple previews upcoming versions of its operating systems, so I'm sure that the Keynote address will reveal new features to be added to iOS 11, which will presumably be released around September of this year.  I also hope to learn about the next version of watchOS.  Apple sometimes announces new hardware at WWDC, and this year there are rumors of a possible new iPad Pro and maybe even a new stand-alone Siri device similar to the Amazon Echo.  Anything is possible, and it will be fun to see what Apple announces.  And now, the news of note from the past week:

  • Ben Lovejoy of 9to5Mac reports that a child abuse suspect was jailed for six months after being held in contempt of court for failing to give police his iPhone passcode.
  • Apple announced yesterday that developers have earned over $70 billion since the App Store launched in 2008.
  • Justin O'Beirne, a cartographer who previously worked on Apple's Maps, has a fascinating post that looks at how Apple and Google maps have changed over the past year.
  • Jackie Dove of Digital Photography Review reviews Halide, a new iPhone camera app that looks very interesting.
  • In an article for the New York Times, Damon Darlin of The Wirecutter recommends the best ways to charge your iPhone.
  • Zac Hall of 9to5Mac reviews the new Elgato Eve Degree, a HomeKit-compatible indoor temperature and humidity sensor with a display.
  • Mike Allen of Axios reports that President Trump has an iPhone with only a single app installed:  Twitter.  That just sounds covfefe to me.
  • And finally, Apple released a few more of its videos urging Android users to switch to iPhones.  My favorite of the new crop is this one called Security:

Categories: iPhone Web Sites

[Sponsor] 1Password -- create and manage your passwords, plus secure storage for other information

iPhone J.D. - Wed, 05/31/2017 - 23:53

I am thrilled to welcome a new sponsor to iPhone J.D.:  AgileBits, the developer of 1Password.  I have been using 1Password for over four years, and it is unquestionably one of my most important apps.  When attorneys ask me what apps to add to an iPhone or iPad, 1Password is always on my shortlist of must-have apps.  I simply cannot imagine using an iPhone, iPad, or computer without a password manager, and I have long considered 1Password the best-of-breed for users of Apple products because of its incredible features and ease of use.  If you don't use 1Password yet, you are in luck because AgileBits has a special offer for iPhone J.D. readers.

Why is 1Password so essential for everyone, and especially attorneys, to use?  You need to use sophisticated, unique passwords for every service to protect yourself, and — for services related to the practice of law — to protect your clients.  We are constantly hearing about hackers getting access to systems, and if you don't have a strong password, you may be the next victim.  And if your passwords are not different for each website and service, then hackers who exploit a security flaw on one website might be able to get your password from one website and use it on other websites.  This is not a theoretical concern; it has actually happened, many times, and surely you have read news articles about incidents like this.  But there is no way to remember all of those strong, unique passwords without keeping them somewhere, and because we are talking about passwords that somewhere needs to be a secure location.  Not only does 1Password create secure passwords for you and store all of your passwords in a secure app, it can also automatically enter your username and password on your PC, Mac, iPhone and iPad.  Thus you get both security and ease of use.

Here is the pitch for 1Password that AbileBits asked me to share with iPhone J.D. readers:

Going paperless? Everything is moving to the cloud, from research, to document creation, to client correspondence. But when so much of your confidential information is online, your passwords better be up to the task. If just one of them is compromised, your whole practice is at risk.  

1Password remembers all your passwords and makes each one strong and unique, so none of your online accounts has to be the weak link. With 1Password Teams, your whole firm benefits. Share passwords, documents, and important information without sending them over unsafe channels.  

World-class security doesn't have to be a hassle — try 1Password free and see what it can do for your practice.

I recently described the new 1Password Families service that I use.  It works really well.  But if you want to share passwords throughout your organization, then maybe 1Password Teams is best for your company.

1Password is more than just passwords.  You can store all sorts of confidential information in the app, and even if a third party has access to your iPhone, they cannot access that information.  The app has built-in forms for credit cards, driver licenses, memberships, passports, Social Security numbers, software licenses and wireless routers. 

 

The app can also store Secure Notes — similar to what you can do with Apple's built-in Notes app, except Secure Notes are safely stored within the 1Password app.  Only you can access the app, either by typing in your master password, or by using your fingerprint.  So if a client gives you some confidential information that you want to jot down, Secure Notes is the perfect place to put it.

And 1Password is always improving.  Just a few weeks ago, 1Password added a Travel Mode function, which lets you erase all passwords and other information, except for a few items that you designate to keep in 1Password, when you leave the country.  That way, even if someone gets access to your device, whether it be a criminal in another country or a TSA agent as you are coming home, all of that confidential information cannot possibly be accessed on your iPhone because it simply isn't there.  Once you cross the border to return home, you can turn off Travel Mode and all of your confidential information is restored.  This feature is smart and, given recent news, incredibly timely.  It is a perfect example of how AgileBits is always taking additional steps to improve your security.

AgileBits knows how important security is for lawyers, so AgileBits is currently offering a special deal for iPhone J.D. readers.  If you sign up for 1Password Families or 1Password Teams, you can now get unlimited and free use of the app for three months.  That is more than enough time for you to kick the tires and see how the app works on your iPhone, iPad, Mac and/or PC and decide what you think about the product before you pay anything.  Click this special link to take advantage of this offer.

Thanks again to AgileBits for creating and constantly updating 1Password, and also for sponsoring iPhone J.D. this month.  With the special free three month offer, now is the perfect time to discover for yourself how 1Password works.  My guess is that long before the end of the three month trial, you'll understand why I have been such a big fan of 1Password for so many years.

Categories: iPhone Web Sites

In the news

iPhone J.D. - Fri, 05/26/2017 - 01:15

Walt Mossberg has been writing about personal technology since 1991, mostly for the Wall Street Journal, but more recently for Recode.  In his final column before he retires, Mossberg considers the future of personal technology.  For many years, it was all about computers.  Lately, the focus in personal technology has been the iPhone.  Mossberg thinks that ambient computing may be the next big thing, the idea that the environment around us is intelligent and responsive, sort of like Siri or the Amazon Echo, with more features, always aware of what you are doing or saying.  It is a fascinating piece that makes me think about what may be coming in the near future.  And now, the news of note from the past week:

  • Florida attorney Katie Floyd and California attorney David Sparks released a great episode of their Mac Power Users podcast devoted to hidden iOS features.  They are joined by Clayton Morris, and the episode is full of great tips.  Worth a listen.
  • South Carolina attorney Justin Kahn notes that NotesPlus, a note taking app, was updated to version 5.0.  Notably, the update adds iPhone support.
  • Nick Statt of The Verge discusses the interesting background of Anker, a company that makes great accessories for the iPhone and iPad.  I'm a big fan of the Anker PowerPort 6 I reviewed in 2015, and I still use it every time I travel.  Anker makes lots of other great products too.  For example, I see that you can get an Anker PowerCore external battery with 10,000 mAh — enough to charge an iPhone more than three times over — for only $27 on Amazon right now.
  • Richard Thompson of The Advocate describes how Ochsner Hospital in New Orleans is using the Apple Watch to help patients with high blood pressure.
  • Mike Schmitz of The Sweet Setup explains how to remove the GPS info from an iPhone picture so that you can share a picture with someone else without also sharing the location data for the picture.
  • If you read my CarPlay review, then you know that I'm a big fan of the technology.  In the past, many Ford cars did not support CarPlay because Ford promoted its own Sync software.  Surprisingly, Ford announced this week that it is updating 2016 model Ford vehicles to support CarPlay, as reported by Ben Lovejoy of 9to5Mac.  It is rare for any car manufacturer to add new features to old cars, especially something like CarPlay.  This is great news for owners of those vehicles who have an iPhone.
  • David Pogue of Yahoo discusses the features in the new Samsung Galaxy 8 that are not on the iPhone 7, and indicates which ones are actually useful and might be nice to have on the iPhone.
  • Brent Dirks of AppAdvice discusses an update to the Duet Display app which lets you use an Apple Pencil to draw on your Mac or PC screen.
  • Buster Hein of Cult of Mac reports that a new FCC filing by Apple reveals that Apple has started testing 5G network technology with the iPhone, technology that could provide speeds up to 1Gpbs.  Wow.  And it seems like just yesterday I was excited to upgrade my Mac's modem from 28K to 56K.
  • Serenity Caldwell of iMore discusses a recent Stanford study on smartwatch health calculations.  The Apple Watch is best at monitoring heart rate, but all devices are less accurate at measuring calories burned.
  • For Global Accessibility Awareness Day on May 18, Apple released seven videos showing how people with disabilities take advantage of Apple products.  Jim Dalrymple of The Loop shows off all seven videos on this page.
  • And finally, Apple unveiled a new part of its website devoted to convincing Android users to switch to iPhone.  The primary message is let folks know that the switch won't be complicated; Apple even has an Android app which moves everything over.  But the webpage, and associated short videos, also explain why life is better on iPhone.  Here is one example, which points out that Apple does more to protect privacy on the iPhone than Google does on Android:

 

Categories: iPhone Web Sites

Review: Renogy E.LUMEN Solar Flashlight iPhone Charger

iPhone J.D. - Wed, 05/24/2017 - 00:35

Five years ago, Apple CEO Tim Cook was asked about Microsoft's decision to merge laptop and tablet computers into one device.  Cook said that he thought it was better to keep the iPad and the MacBook different devices, explaining:  "Anything can be forced to converge.  But the problem is that the products are about tradeoffs.  You begin to make tradeoffs to the point that what you have left at the end of the day doesn't please anyone.  You can converge a toaster and a refrigerator, but you know those things are probably not going to be pleasing to the user."  Sometimes convergence is great, like peanut butter and jelly.  Sometimes not so much, like Cook's theoretical toaster fridge.  One cannot help thinking about convergence when viewing the E.LUMEN, a multi-function flashlight made by Renogy.

Renogy was founded a few years ago by Yi Li while she was getting a Ph.D. in physics at Louisiana State University.  The company was created to sell solar products, first as a part of LSU's Technology Center, then it was based in Southern California, and now the company operates out of Ontario, Canada.  Renogy makes many different types of solar products, but one of its smallest products is the E.LUMEN.  The company sent me a free review unit, and I have been using it for the past week (as have my kids).

Solar power

The primary function of the E.LUMEN is to serve as a solar-powered flashlight.  Expose the solar panel on the side of the E.LUMEN to sunlight during the day, and you can use the flashlight at night, without having to worry about batteries.  The E.LUMEN rests on a side (it isn't completely round like most other flashlights) so the solar panel will stay pointing up towards the sun.

Renogy says that if the E.LUMEN is at 0%, it takes about 29 hours of sunlight to get back to 100%.  Renogy also says that the main flashlight mode of the flashlight can last 3-4 hours, but it lasted much longer than that in my tests.  I turned on the flashlight at 9pm one night, and it was still going at 7am in the morning, although it was much dimmer.  It took a few more hours for the E.LUMEN to be completely dead.  I then left it outside for two days, and it charged up again.  Unfortunately, there is no indication on the E.LUMEN of how much charge the device has, so I don't know how close I got to a full charge after two days outside.

Three Lighting Modes

The main flashlight has three modes, and each of those modes has multiple settings.

The headlight mode functions like a normal flashlight.  There are four settings within that mode, and you switch between them by pressing the main button on the flashlight.  The bright setting uses 3W of LED light to emits 200 lumens of light for 200 meters.  Press the button again to switch to a dimmer setting, press the button a third time to switch to a strobe mode (perfect for attracting attention, blinding an intruder, or hosting a disco party), and press the button a fourth time to turn off the headlight.

I'm not in the business of reviewing flashlights, but the E.LUMEN headlight mode seems very bright to me, and based on some research I did on the Internet, this output seems similar to other flashlights in its class.  The light beam is brighter in the center (and unlike some other nice flashlights, you cannot twist to adjust the size of the bright center of the beam).  It is bright enough that you will hurt your eyes if you look directly at it.  Unless you are leading a search party or exploring a cave, I suspect that you will find this to be a sufficiently bright flashlight.  It's certainly brighter than the others that I have in my house.

If you hold down the button for three seconds, you switch to the second mode, the white floodlight mode.  This mode illuminates 10 small lights on the side of the flashlight (around the solar panels) at 2W, 150 lumens.  This mode is nice because it gives you a wide range of light, which could be useful if you want to shine light over a wide area to get some work done, or if you want to light up the inside of a tent.  Press the button a second time to switch to a dim setting, and a third time to switch it off.

The final mode is the red strobe light mode, which I'm sure is useful for attracting attention in an emergency.  Presh the button a second time for a dim red strobe light, and a third time to turn if off.

iPhone charger

A solar-powered flashlight contains a rechargeable battery, and people use rechargeable batteries to charge an iPhone, so why not combine those two functions?  If you twist off the bottom of the E.LUMEN, two ports are revealed.  One is a standard USB port.  Plug in your USB-to-Lightning cable and you can charge your iPhone.

The battery is a 2,000 mAh Lithium ion battery with a 1 Amp output.  That should be enough power to almost fully charge an iPhone 7 once, or enough to charge an iPhone 7 Plus around 50%.

Charging an iPhone from a flashlight might seem a little goofy at first, but if you are camping or if there is an extended power outage, being able to use solar power to charge the battery and then charge an iPhone could be incredibly useful.

Next to the USB port is a Micro USB port, which is used only for input.  If you need to charge the E.LUMEN and either don't have access to solar power or want to charge it more quickly, just use any standard Micro USB cable (one is included with the E.LUMEN).  Unlike the 29 hours of solar power required to fully recharge an E.LUMEN, you can recharge via Micro USB in only 6 hours.

But wait, there's more!

Just in case a solar-powered battery/flashlight/strobe light/iPhone charger isn't enough convergence for you, the E.LUMEN has many more tricks up its sleeve.  One side of the top of the flashlight has a seatbelt cutter.  The other side has a high-strength, alloy glass-shattering hammer.  With those two tools, the E.LUMEN seems like a useful device to keep in your car's glove compartment. 

Also, the side of the E.LUMEN has a small magnet.  If you have something metallic and flat, like the side of a filing cabinet, the magnet is strong enough to hold up the flashlight.  So the magnet makes it easier to store the E.LUMEN.

Finally, the very bottom of the E.LUMEN has a compass.  It is on the part that you remove to expose the USB ports, so you could hold and use the compass without having to hold the entire flashlight.  I haven't had a need for a compass since I was a Boy Scout, and of course the iPhone itself has a compass app, but if you have a need for a small compass, the E.LUMEN has you covered.

Putting it all together

If you get trapped in your car in the middle of nowhere, you can use the E.LUMEN to cut your seatbelt off and shatter the glass window to escape from the car.  Then you can use the compass to get your bearings, use the red strobe light to draw attention to yourself and seek help, and if nightfall comes you have two types of flashlights to look around.  And if you haven't drained the battery by using the flashlight, you can recharge your iPhone to call for help.  Although perhaps using the phone to call someone for help should have been the first thing that you did.

Sure, that scenario is farfetched, but I have to admit that it does seem nice to have a flashlight with so many other functions — even if you never to use all of those functions at one time.  Best of all, the E.LUMEN feels like a nice flashlight in your hand.  It weighs 0.68 lbs, which is not too heavy but sturdy.  It is made of strong aluminum (remember, this thing is strong enough to work as a glass-shattering hammer) and looks like it can stand up to a lot of abuse.  The feel is somewhat similar to the feel of a Maglite flashlight if you have used one of those.  It has an IP54 rating, which means that it has reasonably good protection against dust, and it is OK for water to splash on it (e.g. rain), but you shouldn't direct a jet of water at it and you shouldn't let it go underwater. 

If you are looking to get a flashlight for camping or for your car, or even a flashlight that could be used during emergency situations in your house, the E.LUMEN seems like a great option to me.  You get all of the features that you expect from a traditional flashlight, plus lots of extra features such as an iPhone charger that could turn out to be quite useful in certain situations.  Using solar power on a flashlight can be good or bad depending upon the circumstances; you cannot quickly swap out batteries like you can with a standard flashlight, but you also don't need to worry about keeping (and carrying around) those extra batteries because you can use the sun to recharge.  In short, I was worried that the E.LUMEN would be a toaster fridge, but after using it and thinking about it for a week, I like the product and it seems more like a yummy PB&J.

Click here to get the Renogy E.LUMEN Solar Flashlight from Amazon ($24.99).

Categories: iPhone Web Sites

In the news

iPhone J.D. - Fri, 05/19/2017 - 01:38

New York attorney Nicole Black discusses a new ABA Opinion (Formal Opinion 477) on legal ethics issues surrounding email and other methods of communicating with clients.  The bottom line is that you need to determine what is the right method of communication depending upon the sensitivity of the information, the risks of disclosure, etc., all of which requires a case-by-case analysis.  The lack of a black letter rule makes it harder for attorneys.  For example, you can't just say that unencrypted email is always appropriate, becomes sometimes it isn't.  So essentially, before you send any email or text, before you use Dropbox to share a file, and before you decide whether to meet in person or just use your iPhone, you need to pause and analyze what approach is reasonable for a specific communication with your client regarding a specific topic.  And now, the news of note from the past week:

  • California attorney David Sparks recommends adding a strap to your AirPods when using a bicycle.
  • South Carolina attorney Justin Kahn discusses a recent update to Microsoft's OneNote app.
  • Things is a powerful app for tracking your to do items (my wife uses the app every day), and this week it was updated to version 3.  Lory Gil of iMore discusses what is new in Things 3.
  • Mike Wuerthele of AppleInsider discusses the AT&T Call Protect app.  I reviewed that app earlier this year, and I still like it.
  • Steven Levy was given a tour of the new Apple Park campus and write a great article about it for Wired.
  • In an article for Macworld, Jason Snell discusses Apple's new Apple Park campus, noting that it is the last great Apple product by Steve Jobs.
  • In an article for Macworld, Dan Moren says that health is Apple's next killer app.
  • Christina Farr of CNBC reports that Apple CEO Tim Cook has been seen wearing a device that tracks blood sugar connected to his Apple Watch, a suggestion that Apple may be developing a glucose tracker for folks with diabetes.
  • Sarah Perez of TechCrunch notes that Apple is now doing even more educational classes at its stores and has launched a new website for the classes.
  • This one is really neat.  Charlie Sorrel of Cult of Mac walks through the steps to use the Photos app on an iPhone or iPad (this works better with a big iPad screen) to see a 3D view of a city with flags indicating photos that you took in different areas of the city.  I had no idea you could do that.  Very cool.
  • Jonny Evans of ComputerWorld shares 15 Apple Watch tricks.  One on the list that I didn't know about was the ability to turn the digital crown to gently illuminate the watch face, useful if you want to be discreet and/or are in a dark room.
  • Rene Ritchie of iMore tells the story of a man who was saved by Siri.  He was burned in an explosion and couldn't use his fingers to dial 911, but he was able to ask Siri to call 911 for him.
  • Last week, I noted that Apple released three videos with tips on using an iPhone to take photographs.  There are actually many more videos, and they are all collected on this page on the Apple website entitled "How to shoot on iPhone 7."
  • And finally, this week Apple released a new ad to show off the portrait mode feature of the iPhone 7 Plus.  The commercial was filmed at a barbershop right here in New Orleans.  It's a cute commercial.  One minor thing I noted — at the start of the commercial, you see a lawyer's office on the left side of the screen next to the barbershop.  I know where this commercial was shot (the Family Barber Shop at 8112 Oak Street), and while I haven't yet driven over there to confirm, I think that Apple digitally added the law firm sign over what is actually a yoga studio.  Indeed, according to the Louisiana State Bar Association website, there is no "Donald M. Taylor" practicing in Louisiana.  Interesting that Apple thought that the ad would look better if the barbershop was next to a law firm.  I guess it just shows you that everyone loves lawyers and wants to be near lawyers.  Here is the ad, which Apple calls Barbers:

Categories: iPhone Web Sites

Install iOS updates, even if they seem minor

iPhone J.D. - Wed, 05/17/2017 - 22:50

Earlier this week, Apple released iOS 10.3.2 for iPhone and iPad.  Any X.X.1, X.X.2, etc. update is typically considered a minor update which adds no new features and just addresses some bugs and/or security issues.  Sure enough, the release notes for iOS 10.3.2 say that it "includes bug fixes and improves the security of your iPhone or iPad."  You can get more details on the security improvements on the Apple website; where you will learn that iOS 10.3.2 fixes things like memory leaks that could allow an app to get kernel privileges, a flaw that could let an app execute arbitrary code, and a memory issue that could allow an app to cause a denial of service.  But the concept of "security updates" may seem so unexciting that I'm sure that many folks conclude that they don't want to waste the time installing the update.

This week we learned, once again, that security patches are important.  As noted in numerous news stories such as this one from the Washington Post, a few years ago the NSA developed something it called EternalBlue, a hacking tool that the NSA could use to access computers to help U.S. interests.  But the tool was stolen by hackers, and after the NSA discovered that, the NSA revealed the tool to Microsoft so that Microsoft could patch the flaw in Windows that the tool exploited.  Microsoft released that patch in March of 2017, but many computers had not yet been updated, and as a result ... well, I presume you heard about all of the computers around the world that were the victim of ransomware a few days ago, including a number of hospitals in London.  As the Post article notes:  "The malicious code at the heart of the WannaCry virus that hit computer systems globally late last week was apparently stolen from the NSA, repackaged by cybercriminals and unleashed on the world for a cyberattack that now ranks as among the most disruptive in history."

From a worldwide perspective, WannaCry may be one of the most disruptive cyberattacks.  But for Rhode Island law firm Moses Afonso Ryan, the most disruptive cyberattack was last year when a hacker took control of its computers and the firm had to pay a $25,000 ransom to get access to its systems again after three months.  Even worse, as reported this month by Debra Cassens Weiss in ABA Journal, the law firm lost $700,000 in billings due to the attack, and its business interruption insurer is denying coverage.

It is unfortunate, although perhaps unsurprising, for a law firm to be a victim of hackers.  I'm more amazed that the NSA — which must be one of the most security-conscious organizations in the world — could even be the victim of hackers.  If the NSA is vulnerable, anyone is vulnerable.  And as a side note, this is the sort of thing I was thinking of when I noted in the past during the FBI vs. Apple litigation that it was foolhardy for the FBI to ask Apple to create a backdoor for the government to access iPhones.  Even if a special key was created only for the government, and even if the government honestly tried to keep that key secret, the risk of it being accessed by bad guys is simply too great to ignore.

However, my goal today is not to reignite the FBI vs. Apple debate, but instead to point out that virtually all software and hardware can have bugs and flaws.  Fortunately, when these problems are discovered, they can typically be patched.  I don't think I've ever seen an iOS update that doesn't include at least some security patches.  Hopefully, iOS 10.3.2 wasn't patching anything as dangerous as the Windows flaw used by EternalBlue and the WannaCry virus, but you never know.  What I do know is that when Apple (or Microsoft or any trusted vendor) releases a security update, you should install the update.  Maybe you don't want to install it immediately, just in case the update itself has a flaw.  That happened in 2013 with iOS 6.1, in 2014 with iOS 8.0.1, in 2016 with iOS 10.0, and other times as well.  But Apple typically discovers those bugs very quickly, and then pulls the update until the issue is fixed.  Once an update has been out for a day or two, you can feel safe installing the update.  Of course it is always best to backup your iPhone or iPad before installing any update.  (I usually practice what I preach, but to be honest sometimes I just install the update and cross my fingers.)

If you haven't yet updated to iOS 10.3.2, it is time to do so now.  Open the Settings app, tap General, and tap Software Update.

Categories: iPhone Web Sites

In the news

iPhone J.D. - Thu, 05/11/2017 - 19:39

One of the most useful apps in my law practice is GoodReader, the primary app that I use to read and annotate PDF files.  The last major update was GoodReader 4, released in 2014.  Since then, the developer of the app, Yuri Selukoff (whose mother was a patent attorney), obtained a difficult-to-receive EB-1 Visa (reserved for foreign nationals with extraordinary abilities) and moved from Moscow to San Francisco, as described in this interesting profile of Selukoff from last year on the Inside BlackBerry blog.  I was pleased to see a recent confirmation on the GoodReader Facebook page that Selukoff is hard at work on GoodReader 5.  There is no release date yet, but hopefully the reason for Selukoff's recent post is that the release date is coming soon.  Selukoff says in that post:  "It’s a huge update with a completely new design and new features, some you may not even know you'll want until you've seen them!  So fear not, and get ready (or for those of you who’ve been ready, stay ready) – GoodReader 5.0 is on the way!"  For all of us who use GoodReader in our law practices – and I know from the feedback I receive from iPhone J.D. readers that there are many of us – it will be great to see a major update to this essential app.  And now, the news of note from the past week:

Categories: iPhone Web Sites

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