Tags Notifications

Skype for Web adds calling to mobile phones & landlines, guest mode, notifications, more

After launching Skype for Web worldwide back in June, today the previously chat-only web app is adding support for making phone calls and other new features.

We’ve updated Skype for Web so you can now save money on your phone calls to mobile phones and landlines. All you need is a little Skype credit or a subscription to start making affordable international calls from Skype. Once you’ve signed in to Skype for Web, simply click on the call phones tab, select your destination, dial the number you’d like to call and then hit the call button.

And in addition to the support for voice calling to mobile and landlines, Skype for Web today adds support for in-line YouTube videos, meaning you won’t be pulled out of chats to watch a video when clicking YouTube links, as well as support for notifications:

…if someone posts a YouTube video link in Skype for Web, you’ll be able to watch it directly in Skype. You get all the same volume and full-screen controls you have in YouTube, but you won’t have to open a new browser window to watch the video—it’ll instantly play directly in Skype… as long as you’re signed into Skype for Web, you’ll receive notifications, even if you’re in another browser tab or another app.

And lastly, the Skype for Web experience is adding the ability to add people to chats that don’t have Skype accounts (a feature already available for Windows users) through a new ‘Share conversation’ feature. Users on the other end will get a URL and will be able to join chats in guest mode without an account using Skype for Web. 

You can check out the new Skype for Web features rolling out today at web.skype.com.

Filed under: Apps Tagged: chat, desktop, guest mode, landlines, Mac, mobile, notifications, Phone calls, skype for web

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Jordan Kahn

March 14th




Pebble Time smartwatch gets a redesigned iOS app alongside firmware 3.10

Pebble Time smartwatch users are getting a few notable updates today including a redesigned iOS app alongside the latest firmware for the watch itself that brings new features, fixes and enhancements.


Filed under: Apps Tagged: 3.10, app, App Store, Firmware, Health, iPhone, Jumbo emoji, notifications, pebble time, update, version 3.10

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Jordan Kahn

March 7th



Patent application shows how Apple Watch could measure ambient sound to adjust volume of iPhone alerts


iPhones could in future automatically sound louder or quieter notification alerts depending on the level of background noise. A patent application published today describes how both an iPhone and Apple Watch could periodically measure ambient sound levels, adjusting notification volumes to an appropriate level.

The patent notes that while users can manually adjust the volume of alerts, many don’t do so because they forget or because it’s too much hassle. The patent suggests that the primary sound reading would be taken from the Apple Watch (aka ‘a wearable device’) …

A desired alert volume can differ dramatically based on whether a user is in his office with his device on his desk or in a crowded subway with his device in his pocket. Despite these distinct preferences, a user can keep an alert volume fixed in order to avoid the inconvenience of changing the setting or due to forgetfulness […]

A wearable device is likely to be relatively exposed to the ambient air while it is being worn, while a host device might be exposed to ambient air or shielded to varying degrees from ambient air by a sonic “barrier,” depending on how it is being carried or stowed.

In other words, an iPhone in your pocket or bag can’t accurately measure surrounding noise levels. But by comparing readings from the Watch and phone, the system can automatically work out whether your iPhone is buried somewhere. If it is, it would boost notification volumes to compensate.

The patent also suggests that Siri’s voice-recognition algorithm could be adjusted to suit different levels of background noise.

Other comparisons of sound can be used for other purposes, such as adjusting speech detection algorithms in the host device to account for environmental sounds that may interfere with speech detection.

This is of course just one of thousands of ideas patented by Apple, only a small number of which ever make it into products, but – speaking as one of the lazy ones who just leaves my iPhone volume high the whole time – this certainly seems a very handy feature to add.

Via AI

Filed under: iOS Devices Tagged: Apple Inc, Apple watch, iPhone, Noise, notifications, Patent, Sound

Continue reading more about iOS Devices, iPhone, and Apple watch at 9to5Mac.

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Ben Lovejoy

February 11th



Google Drive for iOS gets improved sharing experience w/ notifications & more


Google Drive updates arriving today include new features for the service’s iOS app including sharing notifications and what Google promises will be a ‘consistent sharing experience across platforms.”

As part of its Drive mobile app updates today, both users of the iOS and Android apps can now enable notifications for when files are shared with them. Not only is it a notification, but it also acts as a quick link to jump right into the file or folder. And in addition, Google notes that “If a file/folder owner has notifications turned on and someone requests access to their content, the owner will be notified of the request instantly on their mobile device so they can quickly grant access.”

Another feature in the update for the Google Drive iOS app is what Google describes as a new consistent sharing experience, which essentially means the iOS app sharing experience is now on par with the Drive app on other platforms. You’ll notice the addition of an option to add a custom message when sharing:

We’re implementing a more consistent sharing experience in Drive (and the Docs editor apps too!) across platforms, including the ability for people using the Drive iOS app to add custom messages to recipients directly from the app when sharing a file.

The updated Google Drive app for iPhone and iPad is available now.

Filed under: Apps Tagged: App Store, Google Drive, notifications, sharing, update

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Jordan Kahn

November 4th



Facebook bolstering iOS Notifications tab with sports scores, birthdays, more

A More Useful Notifications Tab on Mobile | Facebook Newsroom 2015-10-26 13-25-16

If you’re a Facebook user, you’re definitely familiar with the Notifications tab in the company’s iOS app. Although it has barely evolved from being a simple stream of your notifications since its introduction many years ago, Facebook has today come out to outline some changes on the way to make it more useful and personalized.

Assumably since most of us rarely use or view notifications that are more than a day old, Facebook has decided to use the space in the Notifications tab in other, more useful, ways. With the new version, you’ll find the 5 or so most recent activity notifications at the top, with handfuls of additional — and hopefully useful — information below.

Among the things that Facebook says it is adding to the Notifications tab are friends and family “milestones” (which include birthdays, major life events, and the like), sports scores and television notifications based on the pages you have already liked, as well as events that are around the corner (but, seemingly, only those that you’ve already joined).

Facebook says that if you head into the app settings and allow it to see your location history (which many users already have), you can see things like local events based on your physical location, as well as weather updates, movies that are playing at nearby theaters, and even places to eat. Unsurprisingly, most of these features will connect you with many locations’ Facebook pages.

Facebook says that the update is rolling out “gradually,” so it should appear on your device sometime in the next few days.

Filed under: AAPL Company, Apps, iOS Tagged: Android, app, Apple, Facebook, Google, iOS, iPhone, notifications, update

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Stephen Hall

October 26th



PSA: Here’s how to keep seeing iPhone 6s Lock Screen notifications + wallpaper despite super-fast Touch ID


“Faster” is almost always “better” with new iPhones, but the iPhone 6s’s lightning-quick Touch ID fingerprint scanner has created a small new issue: if you touch the Home Button to look at your Lock Screen, you’ll see that it disappears within a split-second. At a minimum, this is visually jarring, but it also impacts historic iPhone functionality — users have been customizing their Lock Screens with photos (most recently, Live Photos) and checking the date/time there since the first iPhone launched in 2007, and it subsequently became an easy place to view notifications and activate the camera.

If you want to continue using the Lock Screen for any of these reasons, there are a couple of workarounds:

  1. Start using the Sleep/Wake Button on the iPhone’s right side for all screen activations and deactivations. This is the easiest way to do a quick turn on and off of the display for notifications.
  2. Go into the Settings app, select Touch ID & Passcode, and remove your most commonly used finger scan from the list of stored Fingerprints. This will let you continue to activate the screen using the Home Button’s Touch ID sensor, without immediately moving to the Home Screen.

The choice between 1 or 2 will come down to personal preference, the way you hold your iPhone, and how you use your iPhone when it’s docked or car-mounted. For example, if you want to quickly check notifications when your iPhone is car-mounted (and your car is stopped), you may find that the Sleep/Wake Button is out of reach or inconvenient to press inward, making the Home Button a better choice. Removing your index finger from the Touch ID list will let you naturally use one finger for screen and Home Button interactions.

More From This Author

Check out more of my editorials, How-To guides, and reviews for 9to5Mac here! I’ve covered a lot of different topics of interest to Mac, iPad, iPhone, iPod, Apple TV, and Apple Watch users. I’ve recently discussed how to safely prepare and wipe your iPhone for resale or trade-in, and how to get the best iPhone trade-in price to help buy an iPhone 6s, amongst many other topics.

Filed under: How-To, iOS, iOS Devices Tagged: alerts, iPhone 6s, notifications, Touch ID, Wallpaper

Visit 9to5Mac to find more special coverage of iOS Devices, iOS, and iPhone 6s.

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Jeremy Horwitz

October 22nd



Apple now sending iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus shipping notifications for Friday delivery

Apple has started sending out shipping notifications for the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus, right on schedule for Friday delivery. The shipment notifications are likely rolling out over the next few hours so don’t worry if you haven’t gotten your dispatched notification just yet. Unless your iPhone is delayed by the Pope, you should be just fine getting […]

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Benjamin Mayo

September 23rd



New interview with Kevin Lynch reveals more Watch details, early prototypes used timeline UI


WIRED has posted a new story on the Apple Watch, which revolves around interviews with Apple human interface designer Alan Dye and Apple’s VP Technology Kevin Lynch, who heads Apple Watch software. The piece shines new light on the foundation of the smartwatch project at Apple as well as some new details about the product — which ships later this month.

Amusingly, Lynch did not know what he would be working on when he accepted the Apple job. He walked into the role with the project already underway; early ‘experiments’ from the iPod team with click-wheels and such. Dye says that the idea for a watch blossomed during design meetings for iOS 7, Apple’s major software overhaul.

Naturally, Apple reworked the iPhone software to fit the new form factor. Early prototypes used a top-to-bottom timeline interface apparently, reminiscent of what Pebble is showing with the Time. However, this idea was dropped. Lynch says that long interactions with the Watch were simply uncomfortable.

“It was all very understandable, but using it took way too long,” Lynch says. Also, it hurt. Seriously: Try holding up your arm as if you’re looking at your watch. Now count to 30. It was the opposite of a good user experience. “We didn’t want people walking around and doing that,” Dye says.

The software was refined in three main iterations to focus on actions that could be completed within a matter of seconds. Some features were cut completely because they didn’t fit this paradigm. The Short Look, Long Look user experience is a clear example of how this philosophy transpired into the final product.

For hardware, the Taptic Engine was a particular focus with engineers refining the haptic feedback for over a year under Ive’s command. Weekly meetings would review the feelings a user felt from an incoming phone call, for instance.

Apple tested many prototypes, each with a slightly different feel. “Some were too annoying,” Lynch says. “Some were too subtle; some felt like a bug on your wrist.” When they had the engine dialed in, they started experimenting with a Watch-specific synesthesia, translating specific digital experiences into taps and sounds. What does a tweet feel like? What about an important text? To answer these questions, designers and engineers sampled the sounds of everything from bell clappers and birds to lightsabers and then began to turn sounds into physical sensations.

The WIRED piece also highlights that the customizability options, variety of bands and screen sizes, were an important focus from the start of the project. Unlike Apple’s usual practice, Dye says ‘personalization and beauty are everything’ when it comes to watches. The combination of interchangeable straps, body materials and software complications (widget-like additions that feature on watch faces) allow users to have ‘millions’ of possible variations of the Apple Watch.

AppleWatch_Process_Book_HI-kwc01-19-1024x691 AppleWatch_Process_Book_HI-kwc01-38-1024x691

The WIRED interview also includes some new imagery provided by Apple which show off Watch assets. This includes a look at some of the watch face options, like the different clocks, solar visualizations and iconic jellyfish. You can also see a glimpse of further animated emoji and Mickey Mouse artwork. You can also see an overview of every achievement from the Activity app.


The interview concludes with Lynch reveling how the Watch has changed his own life: ‘about how grateful he is to be able to simply glance at his Watch, realize that the latest text message isn’t immediately important, and then go right back to family time; about how that doesn’t feel disruptive to him—or them.’

You can read the full story over at WIRED.

Filed under: AAPL Company, Apple Watch Tagged: Activity, Alan Dye, Apple watch, designer, fitness, iOS 7, Jony Ive, KEvin Lynch, notifications, Pebble, pebble time, Taptic Engine, Technology, Technology VP, timeline, UI, Wired

Check out 9to5Mac for more breaking coverage of AAPL Company, Apple watch, and Apple Watch.

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Benjamin Mayo

April 2nd



Just Turn Off Your Notifications Already

I see you, internet-connected person, complaining that you're a slave to your phone and to the notifications that won't stop coming. It seems like every day, an app finds a new reason it needs to disturb the few moments of quiet you've got left. You did this to yourself . But you can be saved.


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Mario Aguilar

March 13th


Developer hacks Android Wear to show iPhone notifications (Video)

From 9to5Google: 

Android Wear and iOS (direct connection) - YouTube 2015-02-22 11-02-59

Android Wear is great, but if you’re an iOS user, it looks like the Apple Watch is going to be your only option for a while. Google has yet to make any of Android Wear’s functionality compatible with Apple’s operating system, and it doesn’t look like they plan to do so any time soon. But that’s not stopping one developer, Mohammad Abu-Garbeyyeh, from hacking Android Wear to at least support notifications from iOS devices.

While one might presume that this requires a jailbroken device to work, that’s actually not true. According to the video description, it works the same way a Pebble does, using Apple’s official APIs to send notifications over Bluetooth LE.  But while this wouldn’t require any modifications on the iOS side, there’s almost surely a modified version of Android Wear running on the watch. The developer posted a video of the hack in action, and there’s no reason not to believe it’s legitimate considering this guy is known for his modules made for the Xposed framework:

Notably, getting notifications to show up on an Android Wear device is only the first step toward these watches working with iOS. Getting other things to work, like apps, syncing of health data, and Google Now, would require a lot more tinkering—and likely wouldn’t be possible without a jailbreak. So even if this modification was readily available, I wouldn’t run out to the store and buy a Moto 360 just yet.

Filed under: iOS Tagged: Android, Android Wear, Apple watch, Bluetooth LE, hack, iOS, iPhone, notifications, smartwatch

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Stephen Hall

February 22nd


October 2017
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