Ever since Apple acquired it in 2002, Logic Pro (formerly Logic Pro X) has been its flagship audio production software - and easily one of the best audio editors out there. And, as if to prove it, the latest version packs a heck of a lot of new features.
Apple offers a 90-day free trial of Logic Pro, after which you can buy it for $199.99 / £174.99. While it’s a steep initial outlay, this is a one-off cost - and future updates are free.
The software requires Mac 11.9 or later, and works on any Mac whether it’s powered by an Intel or Apple M1 or M2 processor. So, you don't need the best audio PC or top-end laptop for music production to get started.
This music-making software is Apple’s full professional Digital Audio Workstation (DAW). Its a major step up from its stripped-down progeny Apple GarageBand for Mac and IOS, and its versatility and power have assured Logic Pro wide professional use, as well as gaining a huge cult following.
It’s a very powerful app, but to make it easier, and help ease in newcomers, you’ll find a button at the top right that allows you to choose whether to work in simplified mode or with complete features. The button takes you to the Advanced Settings tab where you can find a précis of functions that differ between the two modes. The best thing about this great feature is that tracks recorded in Full Feature mode will retain their features when played back in simplified mode.
Logic Pro boasts nearly 2,000 definable key and MIDI commands, and - to help you experiment and get creative, there’s also a 200-step undo history, including plug-in and mixer editing undo.
With so much power and so many choices you’re going to need to make space available. Although the basic install of the program requires only 6GB, installing the whole sound library needs 72GB.
You get nearly 6,000 instruments and effect patches, together with 1,200 sampled instruments and a whopping 14,750 Apple Loops - music samples that can be played while inside the Live Loops Grid that Logic Pro shares with GarageBand for IOS.
Your high-quality recordings are at stake, so it’s worth backing up before you update. Go to the applications folder and find Logic Pro. Control click and select compress, create a new folder and put your current version in there just in case.
Elsewhere, the audio editing software now comes with spatial audio, Ableton Live connectivity through Ableton Link, 32 bit float support, new loops and packs, a new ‘free tempo’ tool, nested stacks and all the 35 stomp boxes from Pedal Board now available as individual plug-ins. All in all, this ‘light’ update certainly has a bit of weight to it.
For a long time, users have been asking for more functionality. Apple has listened, and has added that functionality, making stacking even more useful.
There are two types of stacks. Folder stacks offer basic organizational functionality: they can solo and alter levels, but have no metering. Summing stacks on the other hand, retain the ability to change settings on the individual tracks within the stack, as well as changing them all at once where you can edit, add effects etc., saving heaps of time. Behind the scenes Summing Stacks route the output of stacked tracks to an audio subgroup which is then routed to a bus, saving you doing all that, and also freeing up your workspace.
This latest version of Logic Pro adds nested stacks as well, of either type, essentially stacks within stacks. This new level of hierarchy to your DAW’s organization allows you to further subdivide group edit tasks.
Stacks are easy to work with and can be reorganized by dragging track headers around, or by dragging a track header out, if you want to remove it.
This update also gives you the ability to record Pedal Board’s 35 stomp boxes as individual plug-ins. This means you can record the output of generated MIDI effects as an integral part of the track rather than being added during playback. You can choose whether to do that on any particular region and for any particular plug-ins you have applied.
If you’re new to multi-track recording, or simply want to change volume in the tracks filed, the new Gain Tool will suit you. It’s on the left click menu in the main tracks menubar, and once selected, you can simply hover over any track and drag the appearing levels bar up or down for instant effect.
All these new streamlining features will help you to organize your workspace, work smarter and save processing power. They continue Apple’s dedication to clever power-saving strategies while maxing out your music-making resources. For example you can freeze tracks, which makes a temporary render of them, and switch off access to their meters, saving you space.
Logic Pro is readier than ever to do all the heavy lifting for you, so you can get on with other things, like linking up to Ableton Live.
The latest update to Logic Pro supports the Ableton Link protocol too, which will please many users. Ableton Link synchronizes the beat, phase, and tempo of Ableton Link-activated applications, either on the same computer or over a shared network.
Ableton Link allows easy jamming with other networked musicians, and the source platform can be changed among them. All participants will be synced to the tempo of the source platform, making it easy to join in at any time. When the source platform changes, the tempo of participants will follow suit.These choices will override tempo track automation and Smart Temp settings in Logic Pro.
Status changes are displayed in the black control bar in the top middle of the DAW. With Ableton Link connected, a circular progress bar appears with the number of jam participants in the middle.
Ableton Link in Logic Pro also supports start/stop synchronization, meaning you can sync the start and stop commands across all connected applications that have start/stop synchronization enabled.
The new Logic Pro 10.7.5 update also introduces Spatial Audio, another superbly intuitive view which makes for even more dynamic editing. Your Spatial Audio mixes and Dolby Atmos files will play back natively in Apple Music as well, making output easier.
You’ll find these delights in the Dolby Atmos tab in the mix menu. Once Spatial audio is switched on you can go to the Track Inspector on the far left of the DAW and see the square pad that shows up at the bottom. Clicking that opens the Spatial Audio window.
Once there, you’ll be able to move the instruments with the cursor, and hear how they change the location of sounds within your compatible earphones. It’s fun and easy to hear the differences and weirdly satisfying to have a spatial 3D view of a purely audio signal, which can be manipulated for much more realistic and immersive listening.
The original binaural preset, introduced in version 10.7.3, has been updated with the option of a Personalized Spatial Audio Profile. It’s basically the same Head Related Transfer Function (HRTF) algorithm from the original but now tailored to your specific measurements. The algorithm can read photos taken on your phone and tailor the HRTF to the real size of your head and distance between your ears, markedly improving personal playback.
You can now import 32-bit floating point format audio files straight into Logic Pro without conversion.
The introduction of this standard increases file sharing compatibility with other professional DAWS which has to be a good thing. Users will welcome the added headroom when editing provided by the ‘scientific notation’ of the 32 bit float, which is a big increase in sheer information.
It's still worth remembering that ambient sound present during any recording will still be there when you come to edit. Those who record in the field will know that it’s always worth setting levels properly when recording as a base habit, rather than thinking you’ll just ‘fix it in post’.
|Row 0 - Cell 0||Row 0 - Cell 1||Row 0 - Cell 2|
|Pricing & plans||One-time buy, all future updates free||5|
|Tools & features||Packed with tools and accessible to all||5|
|Interface||Improved interface makes for simpler navigation||5|
|Experience||Streamlined and new tools added||4.5|
|Ableton Link synchronization||Easy to sync up with Ableton Live||4.5|
|Dolby Atmos integration||Great way to manipulate audio in 3D spaces||4.5|
|32-bit float||Improved support for 32-bit float||4.5|
|Overall||An impressive professional-grade digital audio workstation with great new updates||4.5|
Since my last update on the "Battle of Safe Havens" on 10th October 2022, Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL), Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT), and Treasury bonds have all risen in value, with interest rates receding somewhat in recent days as inflation shows signs of cooling off.
Before we review the current state of the battle of safe havens, I strongly recommend you go through my past coverage of this debate (if you haven't done so already):
Alright, let's get started!
There's a famous saying in the market - "Don't fight the tape", which means traders/investors should not bet against the market trend. As a long-term investor, I couldn't care less about Mr. Market's short-term shenanigans; however, I do like to analyze market action from time to time as that allows me to optimize my investing operations.
As you may know, the Fed has been aggressively raising interest rates this year. Consequently, the yield curve inverted back in July, and this inversion has been getting broader. Now, an inverted yield curve is generally viewed as the bond market telling us - "a recession is coming". And when the bond market says something, investors should listen; after all, the notional value of debt markets in the US is twice as much as the equity markets.
While the bond market is busy screaming the R-word, equities are rallying like there's no tomorrow! Since hitting new lows for 2022 in mid-October, major equity indices have been on a tear higher, with S&P 500 (SPY) up ~10%. However, the tech-heavy QQQ ETF (QQQ) is up only ~6%.
Clearly, technology stocks are faring worse than the broader market. Over the last fourteen years or so, tech stocks have been leading the bull market, but market generals like Apple and Microsoft are now turning into relative underperformers. Yes, a couple of months do not make a trend; however, I think there's sound logic behind this relative underperformance.
For starters, Apple, Microsoft, and most other mega-cap tech names are seeing a massive growth slowdown. And some of them are already in an earnings recession, as evidenced by the Q3 quarterly reports.
|PE ratio||Forward-PE Ratio||Q3 Y/Y Revenue Growth (%)||Q3 Y/Y EPS Growth (%)|
Source: What Is The 2023 Forecast For Tech Stocks? (Data as of 27th Nov)
A strong dollar is definitely hurting these global technology giants, but don't let those less-worse-than-feared constant-currency numbers fool you. Amid a challenging macro environment, the business momentum for tech generals like Apple and Microsoft is slowing down, and we may still have a ways to go.
As you may know, Apple is facing production woes in China, which could create an iPhone volume shortfall of ~5-10%, maybe even more - depending on the protests at Foxconn's facility in Zhengzhou, China. Further, Microsoft is struggling with a significant slowdown in PC markets, and cloud growth is decelerating too.
While Apple and Microsoft are losing business momentum, their stocks continue to trade at premium valuations of ~25x P/E. To provide some context, Apple and Microsoft have traded at ~10-30x P/E throughout the 2010s, and the long-term trading multiple for S&P-500 is ~15-16x.
Considering the fact that we are no longer operating in the era of free money, Apple and Microsoft's stocks offer little to no margin of safety at all. With the 2-Year Treasury Rate at ~4.5%, the equity risk premium on offer from Apple (FCF yield: 4.75%) and Microsoft (FCF yield: 3.5%) is non-existent!
At TQI, we own a little bit of both Apple and Microsoft within our Buyback-Dividend portfolio; however, we are not adding more capital to these names despite a large cash (treasury) position of ~50% of AUM. And here's why:
|TQI's Fair Value Estimate||Current Price||Upside (+) / Downside (-)|
Source: Author's SA Marketplace - The Quantamental Investor
According to TQI's Valuation Model, both Apple and Microsoft have ~30-40% downside from current levels, and we haven't accounted for a recession. In my view, the risk/reward for a near to medium-term investment in Apple and Microsoft is highly unfavorable right now.
That said, I think Apple and Microsoft are good long-term DGI investments, but we should see far better prices in 2023.
Here's the call I made in early to mid-October:
In the "Battle of Safe Havens", cash has been the winner so far; however, surging treasury rates are making treasury bonds a viable alternative to equities. If I had to choose between Apple, Microsoft, and the 2-yr treasury bond, I would go with the 2-yr treasury bond for the medium term.
And for now, I am sticking with this call. With the Fed still planning additional rate hikes, I like the idea of buying short-term treasuries over long-term bonds, Apple, and Microsoft to ride out an inevitable economic recession.
Key Takeaway: I continue to rate Apple and Microsoft "Neutral/Avoid" at current levels.
Thanks for reading, and happy investing. Please share your thoughts, questions, and/or concerns in the comments section below.
NASA has said that the Orion spaceship has successfully completed its lunar flyby, passing just 81 miles above the lunar surface.
The space agency said Orion reacquired signal with NASA's Deep Space Network, at 7:59 am EST after successfully performing the outbound powered flyby burn at 7:44 am EST, firing the ship's orbital maneuvering system engine for 2 minutes and 30 seconds to accelerate the spacecraft at a rate of more than 580 mph.
At the time of the burn, Orion was 328 miles above the Moon: Shortly after the burn, Orion passed 81 miles above the Moon, traveling at 5,102 mph. Orion is about 230,000 miles from Earth.
This is the first of two maneuvers required to enter the distant retrograde orbit around the Moon, and Orion will remain in this orbit for about a week to test spacecraft systems.
Over the weekend Orion had already reached the point in its journey where the main gravitational force was the Moon ahead of its first lunar flyby.
Also: What is Artemis? Everything you need to know about NASA's new moon mission
Space enthusiasts can see which antennas are communicating with Orion in real-time on Deep Space Network Now. They can also track Orion via the Artemis Real-Time Orbit Website (AROW).
The flight control team has captured additional imagery of the Moon using the optical navigation camera and aims to capture more images of Earth and the Moon at different distances to inform future missions about the best location under changing lightening conditions. Future Artemis missions will see astronauts at the helm of Orion, which on this voyage only has some unusual passengers.
NASA engineers use the amount of speed change to decide which of Orion's service module engines to use for a particular manoeuvre. These engines include reaction control, auxiliary, or orbital maneuvering system, explains NASA.
Orion reached the Moon's sphere of influence at 1:09 pm CST and on Sunday night completed its fourth outbound trajectory correction burn ahead of the outbound flyby burn.
Over the weekend NASA said a team was looking at the star tracker system to understand a number of faults in the random access memory, which have been successfully recovered with power cycles.
Also: Artemis mission: How you can track Orion's trip to the moon in real time
Another team was analyzing a few instances where a unit within the service module that provides solar power to the crew module opened without a command. The unit that accidentally opened is called a "power conditioning and distribution unit umbilical latching current limiter."
"The umbilical was successfully commanded closed each time and there was no loss of power flowing to avionics on the spacecraft. Both systems are currently functioning as required, and there are no mission impacts related to these efforts. Analyzing the data for these systems and understanding their behavior during an active flight test while the hardware is in the deep space environment will Strengthen mission operations on Artemis I and future missions."
It's been a while since we've heard some compelling rumors about the Apple Glasses, with Cupertino's long-rumored augmented reality smart glasses seemingly still some time away from launching.
As such, it's looking likely that we will still have a couple of years to wait before they are revealed, with the Apple AR/VR headset likely to launch first.
Apple Glasses could run on a proprietary operating system first uncovered in the final version of iOS 13; we do like the tipped name of glassOS. The augmented reality framework shows up multiple times in code and text documents, meaning Apple is likely testing activation and application in some capacity. Either way, this is what it'll take for us to wear Apple Glasses
So here's everything else we know so far about Apple Glasses, including the potential release date, price, design and specs.
We would not expect the Apple Glass release date to be anytime soon. That's because an Apple AR/VR headset is expected first, which is tipped to arrive in late 2022 or early 2023.
The Apple Glass would follow after that. Initial reports from both Bloomberg and The Information (opens in new tab) said the device could appear in 2023, but the reports themselves date from 2019. And a lot can change in a couple of years.
Meanwhile analyst Jeff Pu originally claimed that the Apple Glasses could launch in late 2024, alongside a second generation version of the Apple VR/AR headset; however, the analyst has since pushed back his release date estimate to 2026.
In addition to Apple Glass, the Apple VR and mixed reality headset is also in the works, and could be less complex and closer to launch.
The Apple VR and mixed reality headset reportedly features ultra-high-resolution screens and a cinematic speaker system that should enable realistic visual experiences, according to people who have seen prototypes.
Those sources also said the headset looks like a slimmer, fabric-swathed, Oculus Quest, but the design isn't final as the company continues testing to determine the ideal fit for most head shapes.
There's no word on price, though we don't expect it to be cheap. The Quest starts at $399, while HTC's Vive costs $799 and Microsoft's HoloLens 2 is a whopping $3,500. Reports claim Apple's headset could be between $1,000 and $3,000 when it launches.
Like its competitors, the Apple VR and mixed reality headset will reportedly benefit from its own App Store, where users can access gaming, video streaming and communications software. Voice assistant Siri will be tasked with controlling the headset, though a physical remote and body tracking controls are reportedly being tested as well.
As for a potential release date, the VR headset is on pace to debut next year and be released in mid-2022.
Something may also debut at the March 8 Apple Event, if a teaser from Apple's Greg Joswiak is anything to go by. But whether it's Apple Glasses, the long-rumored VR/AR headset, or something else entirely isn't clear.
No clue what the difference between mixed reality, augmented reality and virtual reality actually is? We have an explainer that tells you exactly what mixed reality is and what Microsoft, Meta and Apple have planned for it.
According to Prosser the Apple Glasses are currently priced at $499, plus prescription fees. Now that may seem low, especially compared to competing augmented reality headsets like the Microsoft Hololens 2.
Hololens 2 has a price tag of $3,500 but a big part of of its cost comes from having all the electronics needed to run the AR experience built into the headset.
Apple Glass, rather, will rely on a companion iPhone for processing, so it will have significantly less parts and complexity than Hololens. It'll work more like the Vuzix Blade smart glasses, which have a built-in camera and Alexa integration.
Still, Vuzix Blade starts at $799 (opens in new tab). Apple's entry point is significantly more accessible, costing as much as some of it's top-specced smartwatches.
According to a Bloomberg (opens in new tab) report, the Apple AR Glasses will bring information from your phone to your face. Specifically, the eyewear "are expected to synchronize with a wearer’s iPhone to display things such as texts, emails, maps, and games over the user’s field of vision."
Apple also has plans for third-party apps, and is considering a dedicated app store, similar to how you get apps for the Apple TV and Apple Watch.
Furthermore, a patent granted to Apple has further fuelled the rumor that Apple Glass won’t need prescription lenses (opens in new tab) as the smartglasses will automatically adjust for people with poor eyesight using an “optical subassembley”. However, this patent could be for a standalone smartphone-powered VR headset or a second-generation pair of Apple smartglasses.
A more exact patent also suggests that Apple may employ a projection-based system that beams images directly into the user's eye. This way Apple would skip the need for any sort of transparent display.
The beam would likely be able to ensure the image always stays in focus too, avoiding the issue of displays that also double as prescription lenses. Presumably, however, the frames would still be able to double as regular prescription glasses for those that need them.
The patent also claims that this avoids a lot of the pitfalls people may suffer in VR and AR. Apple explains that some issues, including headaches, nausea, and eye strain occur because the brain it trying to focus on objects in the distance, when the reality is they're on a display less than an inch in front of the eyes. Because retinal projection better mimics how the eyes take in light anyway, these problems can be avoided.
Another Apple glass patent describes how you might be able to change out your backgrounds on the fly, similar to zoom. The patent describes how a headset could perform chroma keying, which is replacing a solid color background with something else.
The headset would “format camera images, detect the selected color range and make a composite with the virtual content. “
One Apple Glass patent points to how it could let you view parts of the world you want to see, similar to Google's Street View. The difference is that this view would be projected directly onto the Apple Glass lenses. And you could digitally teleport to different locations.
Apple has a similar feature in the Apple Maps app now called Look Around, but this would be much more immersive on Apple Glass.
A new Apple patent reveals that the Apple Glass may be able to let you change backgrounds on the fly, just like Zoom, too.
One of the more out there Apple patents suggest that Apple Glass could help you see better in the dark, via depth sensors that provide a greater look at the world around you.
Apple Glasses may also be able to track your finger and hand movements more accurately thanks to some smart rings Apple has patented. Not only will that negate the need for many (if any) external sensors, the system may be more accurate this way. Further patent wins for Apple have supported this theory that they will use wearables for a range of features, including support for finger gestures.
Plus the rings can detect what a user is holding in their hands, so the Apple Glasses can act accordingly. So if you're holding an Apple Pencil, the glasses will track your movements and translate them into handwritten text.
Another recent Apple patent makes mention of “privacy eyewear,” which would hint at a form of smart glasses, possibly the Apple Glasses, and how they could be used to keep what's on an iPhone's display private.
The idea here is that an iPhone's display would be blurred and only clearly visible through the pair of Apple smart glasses; see the patent image above.
The most current Apple Glass prototype reportedly looks like an “un-intimidating” pair of plastic glasses, while marketing materials suggest a Clark Kent-esque design.
It has a LiDAR scanner on the right temple, but no other cameras for privacy reasons (although that could change.) The glasses also come with a plastic stand with wireless chargers.
Being an accessory to the iPhone will definitely has implications on the Apple Glass design. Though the glasses won't be lightweight as your Ray-Ban aviators, they could be light enough and comfortable enough to work as everyday glasses.
There are no plans for the first generation of Apple Glass to come in a tinted variety. For the near future, you're stuck using your regular 'ole sun blockers. But if Apple Glass takes off, perhaps the company would consider expanding its offerings.
Apple Glass might also have a modular trick up its sleeve. The rumored pair of mixed reality glasses could feature swappable arms that each supply a distinct purpose or carry out a different function.
As for the Apple Glass displays, the headset may use Sony OLED displays for AR, according to display analyst Ross Young.
There’s no known specs about the Apple Glass yet, but we can speculate based on what we know about the current tech. For example, it will at least have the same field of view (52-degrees) and resolution (47 ppi) as the Hololens 2.
If Apple aims to create a true augmented reality solution — as opposed to a heads-up display that shows 2D floating notifications or maps, like Google Glass — it’s reasonable to expect the Apple Glasses to connect directly to the iPhone on a dedicated Wi-Fi connection.
If the iPhone has to process all the video captured by the glasses’ cameras and send back the 3D imagery to the glasses at a very high frame per second rate (a bare minimum of 60Hz, with a 120Hz refresh being optimal), it will require a much higher bandwidth than what Bluetooth can provide.
As for battery life, we can also expect a minimum of three hours if Apple wants to be competitive although we can assume that people will be more forgiving about this — especially if Apple provides with some kind of wireless charging glasses case that can extend its operative time through the day like with the Apple AirPods.
A patent spotted by Patently Apple explores a number of ways in which Apple Glass recording can be made obvious to bystanders (opens in new tab) who would prefer not to be caught on camera.
One option explored by Apple is making the camera module removable. “The modular accessory would also make it possible for venues such as bars and theaters to ban the modular accessory while still allowing the HMD frame (without the accessory) into the venues,” the patent reads.
Apple also imagines using lights to show when the device is recording, but unlike the original smart glasses, trying to get around this could ensure that the camera simply doesn’t work.
The patent describes how the lights on the camera could pulse in an encrypted pattern, with the lens capturing reflections in the recorded environment. If the camera can’t detect the pattern, recording could be disabled according to the patent.
As a third option, Apple suggests an alternative where the camera is always embedded, but disabled unless a modular key is attached to the frames.
The latest patents for Apple indicate that the Apple VR/AR headset could use gloves or Apple Watch to sense finger gestures and that these features could make their way to Apple Glasses.
A whole new device form factor requires a tweaked operating system, and it looks like that’s what Apple will be providing, with reference to “realityOS” in App Store upload logs by eagle-eyed developers.
There's not much information on this potential software, but it would make sense for Apple to come up with a custom OS for it's VR and AR gadgets. We'd hazard a guess that such an operating system would have more in common with iOS than macOS.
Glasses that look like glasses: We would like some natural looking glasses, like the ones in the concepts that you see on this page. I’m sure that Apple wants the same thing. No one wants AR glasses that look like geek-wear.
AR in full 3D: Some people would like just a heads-up display, but the true power of AR comes from full 3D integration. For Apple Glasses to be successful, you should be able to run any iOS AR app that currently works on the iPhone through the wearable device.
At least 8 hours of battery life: Assuming you're not running 3D AR apps all of the time and are periodically looking at notifications and 2D apps in between, Apple should be able to find a way to make Apple Glasses last through an average workday, though it may not happen in the first generation.
Here's everything else it'll take for me to wear Apple Glasses.
We will keep updating this page as more Apple Glasses rumors and leaks come out. Make sure to bookmark and come back.
Apple in 2015 unveiled the Apple Pencil, its first stylus that was designed to work with the original iPad Pro. Former Apple CEO Steve Jobs was famously against styluses, but the Apple Pencil has proven to be a useful tool for note taking, sketching, and more with the tablet form factor.
The Apple Pencil has stuck around since 2015, and as of today, all of Apple's iPads work with either the first or second-generation Apple Pencil. In the guide below, we cover everything you need to know about the Apple Pencil.
The Apple Pencil is an Apple-designed stylus that works with Apple's iPads. It's called the Apple Pencil because of its resemblance to a traditional pencil, albeit with a definitively Apple-esque design.
There's a small plastic tip (which can be replaced) that connects with the iPad's display, a pencil-like body to hold onto, and a charging mechanism. In the original Apple Pencil, there's a Lightning connector, but the second-generation model charges inductively through the iPad Pro.
The Apple Pencil is used in lieu of a finger for precision tasks like writing and sketching, and it can also be used for navigating through the operating system. It's excellent for drawings, art creation, note taking, and similar tasks because it's precise, has palm rejection, and offers pressure and tilt sensitivity.
In a nutshell, the Apple Pencil is meant to work like a traditional pencil, but instead of writing on paper, you write on the iPad's display. You can put your hand right on the iPad while you write, which, for a long time, was functionality other styluses were not able to accurately replicate.
There are two versions of the Apple Pencil, the first version released in 2015 and the second version released in 2018. The two do the same thing, but have different designs and charging mechanisms.
Original Apple Pencil
The second-generation Apple Pencil is sleeker, smaller, and more compact than the original Apple Pencil because it has no Lightning port at the end. It's designed to charge inductively through the iPad Pro so you stick it on the right side of the iPad in the flat area to initiate charging, with the Apple Pencil held onto the device using magnets.
Apple Pencil 2
Though there are different charging mechanisms and bells and whistles, Apple Pencil 1 and 2 fundamentally work in the same way and have the same general feature set.
The original Apple Pencil, manufactured from 2015 on with the round body design and Lightning connector is compatible with the following devices:
The second-generation Apple Pencil with a smaller footprint and inductive charging capabilities is compatible with the following devices:
The original Apple Pencil cannot be used with models that are designed for the second-generation Apple Pencil, which includes the iPad mini 6 and the latest iPad Pro and iPad Air devices, and the Apple Pencil 2 does not work with older iPads nor entry-level devices like the standard iPad.
The Apple Pencil has a rich feature set, allowing it to be used for any precision task, or as a replacement for a finger when navigating through iOS.
Apple Pencil can be used as a finger replacement to do things like open apps, scroll, and more, but support for Apple Pencil is also built into iPadOS. There are several unique Apple Pencil features worth being aware of for those thinking about an Apple Pencil purchase.
Apple Pencil also works with tons of third-party apps for note taking, drawing, sketching, and more. You can find these apps by searching for Apple Pencil in the App Store on the iPad, but below we've listed some standouts.
Prior to when the Apple Pencil came out, styluses either had a fine hard tip and were battery powered to activate the capacitive display of the iPad, or had a wide, rubber finger-shaped tip that was not accurate.
A pre-Apple Pencil stylus
Many styluses on the market that are not the Apple Pencil are still have these kinds of tips that are nowhere near as accurate as the Apple Pencil and can't offer the same simple charging and palm rejection features, but there are now some more affordable Apple Pencil alternatives that have Apple Pencil-like functionality.
For anyone who wants to take advantage of the iPad for drawing, sketching, note taking, or other similar activities, the Apple Pencil is absolutely worth the money, but for those who don't need all of the advanced features, there are some similar styluses on the market like the much more affordable Logitech Crayon.
The Apple Pencil and Apple Pencil 2 are only compatible with iPads and will not work with the iPhone. The Apple Pencil requires a display built for it, which iPhones do not have.
There have been rumors here and there suggesting Apple could develop a version of the Apple Pencil for the iPhone, but no such product has ever materialized and rumors about an Apple Pencil for the iPhone have never been consistent.
Have questions about the Apple Pencil, know of a feature we left out, or want to offer feedback on this guide? Send us an email here.
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"Apple VR" is the company's rumored virtual reality headset. Most leaks relating to Apple's headset plans have pointed to a pair of augmented reality glasses, informally dubbed "Apple Glass." However, several reports have hinted at a premium VR or mixed-reality headset arriving first.
Apart from scattered patent filings, which don't often make their way into finished products, leaks about "Apple VR" have only recently begun to surface. The bulk of the product's leaks had come in early 2021, with multiple reports and analysts pointing to an expensive headset with cutting-edge technology arriving in early 2023.
A series of filings linked to Apple have been found in a number of countries, including the U.S., the E.U., U.K., Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Costa Rica, and Uruguay. They all apply to the terms "Reality One," "Reality Pro," and "Reality Processor."
A shell company named Immersive Health Solutions LLC filed the trademarks, but it is believed to be a shell corporation owned by Apple based on clues. It uses many of the same high profile law firms associated with Apple, and was incorporated in February.
Apple CEO Tim Cook has said he believes augmented reality (AR) has more long-term potential than virtual reality (VR). However, since today's VR technology is more mature and easier to produce, a premium "Apple VR" or extended reality (XR) headset could supply developers and Apple's designers a warmup run for "Apple Glass."
VR cuts users off from their environment, fully immersing them in a virtual world. Meanwhile, AR overlays virtual objects, UIs, and characters on top of the user's real-world environment. Mixed reality (MR) can refer to a headset that incorporates elements of both. All of these technologies use two lenses that combine two slightly different images to achieve a stereoscopic 3D illusion.
Apple's rumored approach would be much more advanced than early AR beta products like Google Glass. Google's head-worn device showed flat UI elements seen only in the corner of one lens. Its interface was much closer to that of a smartwatch than to VR.
Like Microsoft HoloLens and Magic Leap 1, modern AR can create the illusion of video-game characters leaping across your room or a virtual table sitting on your living room floor. Today's premium AR headsets sense your environment and place 3D graphical elements accordingly. This is what Apple will ultimately aim for with its AR glasses, though in a smaller form factor.
The form factor further compounds the complexity of AR glasses. A VR headset can be a relatively bulky visor – more like scuba goggles than eyeglasses. The ideal AR headset would be something you can wear all day, appearing more like a pair of prescription glasses. "Apple Glass" would require much greater degrees of miniaturization and efficiency.
Apple's VR or MR headset reportedly has the codename N301. The company hasn't finalized its plans and could still scrap them before reaching consumers. Meanwhile, the more consumer-friendly AR glasses are codenamed N421 and could be years away from launching – 2025 or later.
There is increased interest in the "Metaverse" where people can go and interact with each other in virtual environments. However, it is rumored that Apple will primarily position the headset as a gaming and development tool.
VR headsets aren't exactly new to the market. Sony, Samsung, Oculus, and others have long pioneered the technology as the future of software interaction.
Apple is expected to refine the approach and introduce a headset that will do more than just virtual reality, but augment reality in a mixed AR and VR environment.
Compared to AR glasses, "Apple VR" would be heavier and look like existing VR headsets. It would be about the size of Facebook's Oculus Quest 2, though with a curved visor on its front.
Like Facebook's headset, "Apple VR" would be a standalone product with a built-in battery. Unlike PlayStation VR or Valve Index, you wouldn't need to connect it to a gaming PC, console, or another external processing source.
Late-stage prototypes and concept images of the device show a curved visor that attaches to the face with a mesh material and swappable headbands. Early renders show a simple headset design with bands similar to Apple Watch and bands akin to the AirPods Max.
The headset would be enclosed, allowing full VR experiences isolated from the real world. However, it would also support AR passthrough by using cameras. This contrasts with "Apple Glass," which continually shows your real environment through transparent lenses.
The headset will reportedly have a fabric exterior. While Apple typically uses metal casings for its products, the fabric would help keep the headset's weight down. It may also support swappable headbands, and Apple is allegedly prototyping one headband with a built-in battery.
A Ming-Chi Kuo report in December 2021 says the headset will weigh less than a pound. A second-generation model will be even lighter.
According to leaks, Apple has tested chips for its VR headset that outperform the M1 processors found in the latest Macs. Apple could use a custom version of M1, M1 Pro, or M1 Max in the headset built specifically for VR applications.
"Apple VR" will also have a much higher-resolution display than those found in existing VR products. Among current consumer headsets, the HP Reverb has the highest resolution. It offers 2160 x 2160 for each eye, totaling 4320 x 2160 combined resolution.
The Apple headset will reportedly use ultra-high-resolution 8K displays. Such a pixel-dense screen would produce an ultra-sharp image without any "screen door effect," the term used for early VR headsets' tendency to display visible pixels. An 8K display would also allow for more realistic environments, increasing the user's overall feeling of presence.
Powering an 8K display would be a significant task for even Apple's best in-house chips. The company is allegedly approaching that by incorporating foveated rendering. This technology tracks the user's eyes, only prioritizing graphical detail in the section the user is looking at. Portions of the virtual image in the user's peripheral vision have downgraded quality.
Foveated rendering requires ultra-precise eye-tracking that hasn't yet made it into mass-market VR headsets. However, once companies nail down the technology, foveated rendering will present high-fidelity graphics more efficiently, without any noticeable drop in visual detail.
A 2020 report suggested Sony would be supplying OLED panels for Apple's VR or AR initiatives. Other reports suggest Apple would use micro OLED displays as opposed to standard OLED.
Every Apple product runs some kind of operating system and software and the upcoming VR headset is no exception. Hints to Apple's naming convention for this new operating system has been discovered through various code leaks and documentation.
Like iOS for iPhone, macOS for Mac, and tvOS for Apple TV, the Apple VR headset could run something called "rOS" or "xrOS." A trademark filed by a company called "Realityo Systems LLC" was filed for something called realityOS to be published on June 8, 2022, suspiciously close to the WWDC keynote taking place on June 6, though that didn't pan out into anything.
Mark Gurman shared information about the internal project, saying Apple had chosen the name "xrOS" for the operating system used in Apple VR. An initial announcement has been rumored to take place in January 2023.
Ming-Chi Kuo suggested that the hardware manufacturing was on schedule for mass production in 2023, but the xrOS development may push the hardware release later into the year.
Apple's headset prototypes include outward-facing cameras that could enable some AR features and support hand tracking.
Today's VR headsets primarily rely on motion controls. Somewhat similar to Wii remotes, they include motion sensors that track the user's hand movement and, in the case of the Valve Index, finger movement. While wearing the headset, users will typically see virtual hands that move in real-time along with the remotes.
FaceTime calls and other interactions could be completed via an animated Memoji. Since the user's face will be obscured by the headset, it would use cameras to track facial expressions and map them to a Memoji instead.
SharePlay is also expected to be heavily featured for the Apple VR headset. Users will be able to see movies and listen to music together while interacting in VR.
In addition to hand- and eye-tracking, Apple is also developing other control mechanisms. One possible method would be a thimble-like device worn on a user's finger that could allow them to control software. It isn't clear if that accessory will be bundled with "Apple VR" or sold separately.
Multiple reports have suggested Apple will use LiDar in its MR headset. The technology, which Apple has used in the 2020 iPad Pro and iPhone 12 series, dramatically improves environmental mapping for AR experiences. It can place virtual objects in a real-world environment more accurately, and it may enhance hand tracking as well.
Ming-Chi Kuo says that the Apple VR headset will feature 15 cameras for tracking and biometrics. Eight would be used for passthrough images so the wearer could see the world while wearing the helmet. Six would be used for biometrics, however, what this means is unclear. The final camera would be used for environmental detection.
Apple is also planning on building a fan into its headset. The company typically avoids fans in its mobile devices, but a proper cooling system is essential in today's standalone VR. Even today's most efficient mobile processors would risk overheating under high-end VR demands without cooling to dissipate heat.
A VR system needs to process two simultaneous graphical feeds to power each lens's view, each from a slightly different angle. Each lens' video is graphically demanding and continually shifting in response to the user's head movement. The graphics also need to have high resolutions and support a minimum of 60 frames per second.
The standalone headset would also include a built-in battery, sparking further heating concerns. A fan would be essential to maintain safe operating temperatures under these demanding conditions.
Supposedly, Apple plans on allowing customers to order custom prescription lenses. They could insert these into the headset over the VR displays.
Selling prescription lenses would require Apple to work within regional government regulations. The company hasn't yet decided how to approach perceptions during online or retail sales.
While patents don't always predict a final product, Apple filed one that would use fluid and pressure to adjust the user's prescription on the fly. However, it isn't clear whether Apple would use this patent for VR, AR, both, or neither.
Rumors suggest that Apple could implement eye tracking and iris scanning for controls and biometric authentication. The headset would use the iris identification to authorize Apple Pay purchases or logins.
Apple is planning on pricing its headset "above the $300 to $900 of its rivals," and possibly as high as $3,000. The only current mass-market standalone VR headset is the $299-and-up Oculus Quest 2. Apple's device would use much higher-quality components while prioritizing user privacy.
The high price may mean a commercial-focused pricing plan like leasing the hardware or paying subscriptions for software. Hololens has a similar business model, though Apple is expected to target the headset at both consumer and commercial buyers.
Apple views its initial VR or MR product as a niche project that will sell in low volume, similar to the Mac Pro. On average, Apple is expected to sell one headset per day for each Apple Store. Its less-mainstream nature allows Apple to pave the road for its future AR glasses. Many of the underlying technologies and software content could carry over to the smaller and more consumer-friendly form factor.
Many companies are pushing into augmented reality, virtual reality, and the newly dubbed "multiverse." While Apple hasn't taken an official position on the multiverse, it likely won't sit on the sidelines while its competitors build a new world for users to interact within.
New reports in January 2022 suggest that the VR headset May not launch until 2023, thanks to delays and supply constraints. High-end components like 8K displays may make manufacturing difficult.
Apple has allegedly shown a working demonstration of the rumored VR headset to its board in May 2022. If that's the case, an announcement could be imminent.
Rumors of a second-generation headset have been shared by Kuo from time to time, suggesting it would have improved technologies that enhance the experience. The second-generation headset would also have multiple price tiers with high-end premium and low-end budget lines for consumers, shipping in early 2024.
As Apple hasn't yet finalized its plans, we don't yet know the "Apple VR" release date. It could reportedly launch in late 2023.
Adamya Sharma / Android Authority
Apple helped to launch the personal computer revolution in the 1980s with its Mac PCs. It revolutionized the music industry in the 2000s with the iPod and iTunes. It jump-started the smartphone business with the iPhone in the late 2000s. It also led the tablet and smartwatch markets with the iPad and Apple Watch. More recently, CEO Tim Cook and the team at Cupertino went after one of the biggest tech success stories of all time: Netflix. They made this happen with Apple TV Plus (labelled officially as “Apple TV+”).
Wrapping your head around Apple TV Plus can be slightly confusing because Apple has another product in the market called the Apple TV (no Plus), which is a piece of set-top box hardware. Apple TV Plus, on the other hand, is something entirely different with a distinct approach to building a streaming library.
So what is Apple TV Plus and what does it offer? This master guide has the answers to all your Apple TV Plus questions. Want to supply Apple TV Plus a try? Get it via the button below!
Apple TV Plus
Apple TV Plus has quickly become a major player in the streaming game since its launch in 2019. Its slate of original programming includes shows like Ted Lasso, The Morning Show, Foundation, and For All Mankind as well as movies like The Banker, Greyhound, and Palmer.
Apple TV Plus is Apple’s premium subscription streaming service that attempts to take on Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, and others. It’s completely ad-free, except for promotions for content and add-on streaming services within Apple TV Plus. The platform features a host of original shows and movies made under the Apple Originals program.
This bolsters Apple’s existing Apple TV, which is a set-top streaming box that also allows you to access other streaming services. The idea is that you can bring all of your streaming services into one place, rather than having to remember multiple accounts and passwords.
Because we know it’s confusing with several services and products under the Apple TV banner, here’s a breakdown of the three:
Whether or not Apple TV Plus is worth it will depend on how much you value fresh and original content. It’s not the platform for people who want to binge-watch The Office for the umpteenth time.
Apple TV Plus features some great original content that could be worth the subscription fee for serious TV junkies, though. They include sci-fi epic Foundation, based on Isaac Asimov’s classic novels; The Morning Show, a drama starring Jennifer Aniston, Reese Witherspoon, and Steve Carell; See, an epic sci-fi drama starring Jason Momoa and Alfre Woodard; M. Night Shyamalan’s horror series Servant; and many others.
Compared to other big hitters in the streaming world, Apple TV Plus won’t offer access to new blockbuster films or fan-favorite classics, but it’s the only service to focus so heavily on big-budget original content. Apple is reportedly spending billions of dollars to attract top-tier talent and has deep pockets to keep the platform running as time goes on.
Read also: The best movies on Apple TV Plus
Apple TV Plus also has a fairly generous family sharing plan, allowing up to six family members to use the same account. Even better, they can use their own logins, so you don’t need to share your password with anybody.
Another thing to consider is that if you’re already in the Apple ecosystem, you may be able to get the service for free.
The general consensus from streaming and media experts is that although Apple TV Plus has a solid lineup of original content and fantastic streaming quality, there simply isn’t enough original content (yet).
In our original Apple TV review, we noted that while it isn’t exactly a runaway success, Apple’s streaming service is a solid contender. And it keeps adding more impressive content all the time. In addition to a unique three-episode-initial-drop content strategy to get watchers hooked fast, it also features the best streaming bitrate in the business. Plus, at just five bucks a month, Apple isn’t asking much for access to its content.
That said, in our comparisons with other top streaming services like Netflix and Disney Plus (more on this later), the difference in the amount of content is staggering. Although both services cost more than Apple TV Plus, their catalogs are significantly larger and constantly growing.
In fairness to Apple, the company joined the fray late, and with its focus on original content, it can’t help but start slow. It’s going for quality over quantity. Apple invested a lot of money into Apple Originals and many of them are truly worth watching. Disney Plus has The Mandalorian, Hulu has Handmaid’s Tale, and Netflix has Stranger Things and many others.
Apple TV Plus may be behind, but it’s catching up. With shows like The Morning Show, Ted Lasso, For All Mankind, Severance, See, The Afterparty, and more, it’s a contender, certainly. And on the film side, Apple’s CODA won best picture at the 2022 Academy Awards.
Apple has licensed some third-party content. So far, that’s been limited to original seasons of Fraggle Rock and Charlie Brown holiday specials, so only titles Apple was already invested in as a producer of new seasons and specials. It will probably never boast the same expansive catalog of shows and movies as its competitors. No one is saying the service is bad, just that it doesn’t offer the same value as other options. This could easily change in the future with one or two massive hit shows or movies.
Apple has always kept user numbers close to the chest, so it’s difficult to tell just how successful Apple TV Plus has been with everyday users. Complicating matters further, some current Apple TV Plus subscribers are still on their free year. This means that subscriber numbers could tank as those free trials expire.
Having said that, Apple TV Plus was the fastest-growing streamer in late 2021, according to Antenna.
In May of 2020, we asked our own readers at Android Authority which streaming service they would pick if they could only pick one, and Apple TV Plus captured less than 1% of the vote. Most users commented that the library was simply too small, although it might fare better as a second or third subscription for those who can’t get enough content.
Read also: 2020 reader poll results
There are, of course, other ways to gauge interest in the service. One is Google Trends, which tracks search volume for certain keywords. Apple TV Plus spiked when it was first announced, then again when the service launched. It’s done nothing but stagnate since then, even in the face of a global pandemic when everyone is at home streaming media.
Compared to another service that launched around the same time — Disney Plus — Apple TV Plus is barely a blip on the radar. It’s failed to grab public attention, either due to a lack of compelling material on the platform or a lack of a big marketing push from Apple.
The good thing is that unlike its availability at launch, Apple TV Plus is now supported on Android devices (through Chrome and Firefox browsers), smart TVs, gaming consoles, and popular streaming devices like the Amazon Fire TV Stick.
The service is available in 107 countries around the world. It is not available in every country that supports the Apple TV app. That includes certain high-population countries like South Korea, Romania, Turkey, and others.
However, Apple has promised that each and every Apple Original will be subbed or dubbed (or both) in nearly 40 languages. There will also be closed captions on all titles for viewers who are Deaf or hard of hearing.
Here’s a full list of all 107 countries where Apple TV Plus is supported:
Apple TV Plus launched in November 2019 for $4.99 a month in the US, with a seven-day free trial. However, in October 2022, the company raised the price of the service by $2, to $6.99 a month, or $69.99 for a full year. This fee unlocks all Apple Originals, but you will need to pay for other Apple TV Channel subscriptions separately.
It’s worth noting that there is only one price for the service, and Apple TV streaming includes up to six family members, 4K quality, and media downloads. There are no more expensive plans with extra features — it’s all included in the basic plan.
If you already subscribe to a few other Apple products like Apple Music, it might be worth opting for an Apple One subscription. This includes Apple TV Plus, Apple Music, Apple Arcade, and 50GB of iCloud storage for $16.95 a month. There’s also a family plan for $22.95 for up to six family members. The most expensive plan costs $32.95, boosting iCloud storage to 2TB and including Apple News Plus and the new Apple Fitness Plus.
Around the world, other countries have similar costs, but you can find the list of international prices below:
In order to help boost its newcomer streaming service, Apple initially offered a free year of the service to anyone who recently purchased an Apple device. This includes iPhones, iPads, Macs, iPods, and Apple TV set-top boxes.
However, the offer does not stand for new purchases now. Apple stopped offering a free year in July 2021. From now on, you’ll get just three months of no-cost access before you have to consider a paid subscription. Other new users can still get seven days of Apple TV Plus for free. Learn more about how to get Apple TV Plus for free at the link below.
Read more: How to get Apple TV Plus for free
Signing up for Apple TV Plus is easy, and can be done from both the web and the Apple TV app. In fact, it’s usually the first thing you see when you open the Apple TV app. Just tap Try It Free and confirm your purchase to get started. The first seven days are free, but after that, you will automatically be charged $4.99 a month.
On the web, simply navigate to the Apple TV Plus website, then click Start Your Free Trial. You’ll have to log into your Apple account if you aren’t already logged in, but the entire process takes less than a minute.
No matter how you sign up, you will get a pop-up letting you know if you have a free year or three months to claim due to a exact purchase.
Once your free Apple TV Plus subscription is over, you can also opt for an Apple One subscription if you use other Apple services such as Apple Music, iCloud storage, and Apple Arcade. The bundle will save you some money compared to what you pay for all these services individually.
Apple TV Plus is available in the Apple TV app on all Apple devices. It’s not quite as accessible as other streaming platforms, but odds are you have several devices in your house that can access Apple TV.
For Apple devices, any iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch with the latest software update can access Apple TV Plus directly through the app, which should be pre-installed. Apple TV set-top boxes that are third-generation or newer are also compatible.
Read also: The best media streaming devices you can buy
Several other popular streaming devices such as those made by Roku and Amazon are also supported, as are newer smart TVs from some of the most popular brands. On many newer smart TVs, the Apple TV app is already installed, but models from 2018 may need to search for the app and install it manually.
Certain Smart TVs that aren’t compatible with the Apple TV app may still be able to access the service using AirPlay 2. This allows you to share your screen from any Apple device. You can see a list of supported Smart TV model numbers here.
Android devices are notably excluded from the list since the Apple TV Plus app is not available on the Google Play Store. Still, the platform can be accessed on Android devices via the web portal on just about any web browser, just like on Macs and PCs.
Here’s the full list of Apple TV compatible devices:
Apple TV Plus is all about original content under the Apple Originals program. These include shows, movies, and documentaries starring some of the biggest names in Hollywood. The company’s deep pockets and relationships with other industries supply Apple’s streaming service an advantage over some competitors.
There are many great shows and movies on Apple TV Plus, with new content monthly, and in many cases, you can watch the first episode or two of an Apple Original series for free. This is a great way to see if you are interested in watching more before starting your seven-day free trial.
To help bolster the roster of content, Apple began syndicating older content in May of 2020. As of writing, the only licensed content is the older Fraggle Rock series from the 1980s and Charlie Brown holiday specials. These additions makes sense since Apple TV Plus also has the rights to produce brand new Fraggle Rock episodes and Peanuts content as part of the Apple Originals program.
Apple invested heavily in original shows for the platform, and although not many have managed to completely capture the hearts and minds of the general public (Ted Lasso being the major exception), there are some excellent shows on offer.
We have a full list of the best Apple TV Plus shows with trailers and full descriptions, but here’s a quick list of some of our favorites.
Apple TV Plus
Apple TV Plus doesn’t have as many movies as its competitors, but it does have a respectable selection of original films to stream right away, with more upcoming exclusive titles from big names to look forward to. Check out our list of the best Apple TV Plus movies for trailers and more, but here’s a brief list of what you can expect on the platform:
The service launched its first live streaming programming in 2022. It let users watch two live Major League Baseball games on Friday nights until the end of the 2022 season, with live pre-and-post game content as well. The games were available in the US, Canada, Australia, Brazil, Japan, Mexico, Puerto Rico, and South Korea.
In addition to the live games, Apple TV Plus had a 24/7 “channel” that will feature MLB news, highlights, game replays, classic games, and more. It also had on-demand MLB programming on the service as well.
Although they’re not technically part of the Apple TV Plus program, Apple TV Channels are a great way to get more out of your experience with the Apple TV app while waiting for more original content. It turns the service into something more like traditional cable TV, but without all the bloat.
The Apple TV Channels program is essentially an à la carte selection of TV channels and streaming services that you can subscribe to within the Apple TV app. This allows you to consolidate most (if not all) of your streaming services into one place, with Apple getting a cut of every Apple TV subscription.
It’s easy and convenient to subscribe with your Apple account from within the app, but your existing subscriptions outside of the app cannot be transferred over. You will need to cancel them and resubscribe through Apple TV.
However, there are a few other potential benefits to subscribing via Apple TV Channels, such as higher bitrate streams and media downloads. It also makes it easier to manage your Apple TV subscriptions from one place. Many subscriptions can also be shared with up to six family members, just like Apple TV Plus.
Here’s a full list of confirmed Apple TV Channels:
Apple TV subscription fees will vary by channel but typically hover around $5 or more. Apple TV Channel availability may vary by region, and HBO Now is no longer accepting new subscribers after the launch of HBO Max in 2020.
In addition to Apple TV Channels, the Apple TV app also integrates a few other major streaming services. They will be listed alongside other channels in the app, but launching them will open a third-party app to stream the media itself. Before you ask, no, Netflix is not included.
Here’s a list of external streaming services supported within Apple TV:
Finally, the new Apple TV app will support a number of cable and satellite mobile apps, along with internet-based TV cable services. These include:
Apple TV Plus is part of an increasingly crowded online streaming landscape. This includes the leader in the industry, Netflix, which has the advantage of having years of experience and an impressive catalog of both original and licensed content on offer.
While the service can’t compare to Netflix on the sheer volume of content, it is significantly cheaper. The $6.99 subscription includes 4K and up to six simultaneous streams, while you’ll have to pay a full $19.99 a month for 4K content and four simultaneous streams on Netflix.
Read the full comparison: Netflix vs Apple TV Plus
Amazon Prime Video is also a major Apple TV Plus competitor. It has worldwide reach as well, along with lots of great original shows that have won several Emmy awards. It’s also typically bundled with Amazon Prime, which is an incredibly popular service for online shoppers. It even offers 4K streaming for supported content, making it a solid alternative to Apple TV Plus.
For American users, Hulu can also be a solid alternative to fill your streaming needs. The base plan is slightly more expensive at $6.99 a month, but it includes ads. You’ll have to bump that all the way up to $12.99 to get ad-free streams. One of the biggest advantages of Hulu is that it’s frequently bundled with other services, like the very attractive Disney Plus-Hulu-ESPN Plus bundle at $13.99 a month.
Finally, there’s Disney Plus, which launched less than two weeks after Apple TV Plus. Disney Plus is not available in nearly as many countries as Apple TV Plus, Netflix, or Amazon Prime Video, but it has a huge collection of popular content. Most of the Pixar, Marvel, and Star Wars movies, as well as Disney classics, helped the service to sign up over 50 million users in its first six months after launching.
Read the full comparison: Disney Plus vs Apple TV Plus
The value of Apple TV Plus will come down to how much you want to watch new and original shows. It carries titles like Ted Lasso and The Morning Show, but isn’t the place if you want to rewatch The Office again.
There are a few different ways to get Apple TV Plus for free: You can get a free seven-day trial at any time, the Apple One service comes with one free month, or you can get three months free with the purchase of any Apple device.
You and up to five family members can enjoy access to Apple TV original shows and movies, which is a total of six profiles.
Apple TV Plus offers access to a strong library of original movies and shows, including Ted Lasso, The Problem With Jon Stewart, and Stillwater.
Yes, Apple TV Plus allows you to create as many as six profiles so that you and your family can watch shows together or independently.
Yes, all Apple TV Plus shows and movies are available to stream or obtain in 4K.
No, Apple TV Plus does not have any ads.
Yes, there are parental control options for the Apple TV app, web portal, and set-top box.
Apple TV Plus subscriptions can be shared with up to five other accounts (six total), although officially the program is limited to just family members.
Officially, there is no Chromecast support with Apple TV. However, you can get around this by casting a browser tab with the web app open, with obvious hits to quality and ease of use.
Yes, you can watch Apple TV Plus on the PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X, and Xbox Series S.
Apple hasn’t made any announcements about adding more syndicated content, but it seems to be at least a part of its growth strategy for the platform.
Have you used Apple TV Plus yet, or are you a current subscriber? If so, make your voice heard in our polls below!
Apple has designed several types of bands for the Apple Watch, which it updates on a regular basis, debuting new band options during fall and spring media events, as well as other times throughout the year.
Apple offers an Apple Watch Studio feature that allows most bands to be paired with most Apple Watch casing options so specific Apple Watch band and casing pairings are no longer required when making a purchase. Available Series 8 bands include the Sport Band, Sport Loop, Milanese Loop, Modern Buckle, Leather Link, Solo Loop, and Braided Solo Loop.
The Solo Loop is similar to the Sport Band, but it's the first Apple Watch to feature a slip-on design with no buckle or clasping mechanism. It's made from a stretchy liquid silicone rubber that can stretch to fit over the hand and then collapse to fit tightly on the wrist.
Apple says that it's ultra-comfortable because there are no overlapping parts, and it's simple to slip on and off. It's swim-proof, sweat-proof, and treated with UV for a silky finish. The Solo Loop is priced at $49.
Like the Solo Loop, the Braided Solo Loop is a newer Apple Watch band designed without a buckle or clasp of any kind. It's made from a stretchable recycled yarn interwoven with silicone threads so it can fit over the hand before wrapping around the wrist.
Apple says the soft, textured feel of the band is sweat and water-resistant, plus ultra-comfortable to wear. The Braided Solo Loop is one of Apple's more expensive band options at $99, and the same sizing caveats apply to the Braided Solo Loop.
Apple's Sport Bands are some of the company's lightest, most comfortable bands, made from a flexible and lightweight fluoroelastomer. Because they're ideal for use when exercising or engaging in vigorous activity, most of Apple's aluminum watches ship with Sport Bands. Pricing starts at $49 for the Sport Bands.
Designed to be soft, breathable, and lightweight, the Sport Loop is made from fabric that wraps around the wrist for a tight but comfortable fit.
It's made from a velcro-like double-layer nylon and comes in a range of colors, with Nike-branded Sport Loops also available. The 41mm version fits wrists sized 130 to 190mm, while the 45mm version fits wrists sized 145 to 220mm. Apple charges $49 for the Sport Loop.
The unique perforated Nike Apple Watch bands that come with Nike watches are also available for purchase on a standalone basis.
Nike bands are made from a high-performance fluoroelastomer and are available for both 41mm and 45mm Apple Watch models, plus Apple sells Nike-branded Sport Loop options in unique colors. The bands fit wrists sized 130 to 200mm. Nike Bands are priced at $49.
The stainless steel Milanese Loop, available in 41mm and 45mm sizes, is a flexible metal mesh band that wraps around the wrist. It's made of such a fine metal material that it's comfortable to wear all day long, and it's surprisingly lightweight.
The Milanese Loop is priced at $99, and it comes in silver, gold, and space black.
The Leather Link features a two-piece design that doesn't involve a loop. The Leather Link is made from Roux Granada leather sourced from France, and it has flexible, molded magnets that wrap around the wrist for a comfortable fit.
The Leather Link fits both 41 and 45mm models. It comes in small/medium and medium/large and fits wrists sized from 130 to 180mm.
The Modern Buckle, made from supple Granada leather, is a band that's designed to work with the smaller 41mm Apple Watch models. It features a two-piece magnetic buckle and an inner layer of Vectran weave for strength and scratch resistance.
The 316L stainless steel alloy Link Bracelet, available in 41mm and 45mm sizes, is Apple's most expensive band made in-house. Available in silver ($349) and space black ($449), the Link Bracelet resembles a high-quality traditional watch band.
The 41mm model fits wrists sized 135 to 195mm while the 45mm model fits wrists sized 140 to 205mm. A 6-link add-on kit expands its size from 205mm to 245mm for an additional $49.
My ideal candidate for president would never win. He or she would not even be nominated in today’s political web of self-serving, inbred, power-hungry political party leaders.
Someone with a record of telling the truth and providing constructive solutions is the antithesis of who wins the internal contests and the national debates. Feeding on hatred and bigotry, latching onto minority groups’ discontents and attacks on opponents (especially those based on misinformation) — that wins. Responding to accusations only serves to repeat them and distracts from substantive reasons to vote for the accused candidate.
And typically, the accusation makes Page One and the truth, if published at all, is buried on Page 14.
Check back next week as we add more essays to this package
But I remain a naïve idealist of the 1960s and John F. Kennedy’s Camelot. My candidate would address the substantive issues, with detailed substance rather than superficial generalizations, such as “I like apple pie and motherhood.” Walter Cronkite has died, so I have no name of such a candidate and suspect no such candidate would voluntarily subject himself or herself to the “slings and arrows” of putting his or her name out into the political fray. But maybe Walter Cronkite would still win as president.
Clifford Weiler, Mission Hills
At this time, we don’t yet know what choices we will have in choosing a president for 2024. With 23 months to go, we will certainly be faced with many potential candidates and none of them will be perfect. But the No. 1 requirement for my choice will be someone who exhibits the same values that I was raised with.
My candidate will be honest, not dishonest. He or she will admit to some failings, not try to pass them on to others.
This candidate will listen to both sides of the aisle and make the best decisions for the most people, not just for a few people. The ideal candidate will face the reality of our problems, not bury them with his/her head in the sand. This person will listen to and respect our scientists and experts and make the best policy decisions based on keeping us safe and healthy and preserving the wonderful quality of life we enjoy here in the United States for many generations yet to come.
This person will refer to his political rivals as “opponents,” not “enemies.” He or she will recognize that we are all Americans and embrace us all as equals, even those whose votes went to someone else. They will respect our democracy and the will of the voters.
My candidate will look forward, not backward. Any takers out there?
Patricia Del Rio, Escondido
My choice is Ron DeSantis because he always puts the people first. He is proactive when responding to emergencies, pandemics and disasters. He has proven over and over again that he is more than qualified, not only to be the governor of Florida but the president of the United States in 2024.
Whether Republican or Democrat, my ideal candidate for president in 2024 won’t don a MAGA cap but will proudly display our traditional American motto, e pluribus unum, which continues to define our national identity: “out of many, one.”
This candidate will afford respect to any rival party and its supporters and treat them as the loyal opposition. He or she will never refer to them as the enemy even when disagreeing vehemently over the ordering of priorities and matters of policy. However, he or she will always rely on verifiable evidence and reject the poison of conspiracy theories.
My candidate will invite members of all parties to join together in addressing the pressing issues of our time, knowing full well that compromise must be part of any legislative agenda. Such issues will include (but not be limited to):
- Climate change
- Immigration and the border
- Gun violence
- Racial and gender inequality
- The spread of pernicious misinformation
- Urban crime
- A woman’s right to choose
Finally, if my ideal candidate were to lose, he or she would never claim that the election was rigged but would graciously concede defeat, and not only congratulate the next president of the United States but offer to help in strengthening our democracy.
Emery J. Cummins, Pacific Beach
The ideal presidential candidate for 2024? Or perhaps more appropriate, a Democratic candidate to run against former President Donald Trump?
Things to consider: First, will Trump be the GOP candidate? With his personality, he craves the adulation and all the power. But judging by his past, he cares little for the law, for tradition or for the good of anyone but himself. And no doubt his campaign would be as ugly as it was in 2016. Unless he is indicted, he will probably stay in the race — if nothing else for the money he can raise for himself.
For the Democrats, I am sad to say it, but President Joe Biden should not run again. He is simply too old. Truthfully, Biden has had a successful two years. Other than age, he deserves another term. Prescription drug bill allowing Medicare to bargain on drug prices. Unemployment at historic lows. Limits on prescription costs that will help millions of citizens. The Inflation Reduction Act, which is really about improving national infrastructure with roads and bridges and will employ thousands of people — jobs where you get your hands dirty.
Infrastructure is expensive, yes, but the people who will pay for it are the same people who will enjoy the benefits in the future.
There are many qualified Democratic candidates. So if not Biden, who? First of all is Kamala Harris. Unfortunately, I believe we are still not ready for voters to elect a woman president, like Harris, Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar or Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer. My hope is Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas retires and Harris is selected as his replacement. This opens the vice presidency to Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg. Clearly, he is intellectually capable, extraordinarily well-spoken and quick on his feet, but can he be elected president?
Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Burbank, is a possibility, due to his intelligence, experience, presence and history of trying to impeach Trump, and being on the select committee investigating the Jan. 6 coup attempt. I believe Schiff would be considered a moderate. A debate with Trump would be interesting. Gov. Gavin Newsom would be a front-runner if he commits. But he says he is not interested — right now. Ohio Sen. Sherrod Brown is the right age, and has experience and gravitas. But he would not want to run for president when he is up for election, to preserve his Senate seat. Eric Holder, attorney general under President Barack Obama, is brilliant. He is African American and could be a promising candidate but would be 73 in 2024.
It seems to me that anyone who wants to be president of the U.S. should be disqualified on the basis of their sanity. But somewhere out there is a reasonably well-known, moderate Democrat, male (from the South, if possible) who is willing to take on the slings and arrows of Trump and his cult. Former New Orleans mayor and now senior Biden adviser Mitch Landrieu?
Right now my choice would be Schiff with Holder as vice president. On the GOP side, please, anyone but Trump. The guy who tried to kill democracy should not be a candidate for president.
Ron Carrico, Mission Hills
The ideal president elected in 2024 would be a moderate from either party who represents proven bipartisanship and compromise over ideology. The person would articulate a reasonable approach to the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, providing legal status for immigrant children but compromises on citizenship, allowing immigrants to “get in line” and setting criteria for citizenship but not guaranteeing it. That eliminates the citizenship issues dividing the two parties.
The person would best exemplify the full meaning of integrity and avoid castigating those who might be in opposition on issues of guns, immigration, sexuality, abortion, crime in general and methods for stabilizing inflation.
Additionally, the person would have some foreign policy positions that preserve U.S. strengths (such as NATO membership), recognize realities and above all have the respect of other nations. The candidates must address how they hope to deal with issues regarding China, Russia and the Middle Eastern nations. A proposal to support modifications to the United Nations Security Council permanent membership would not be a bad idea, with the criteria applying to all members. Of course they’d need a well-defined position on Ukraine if that conflict, God forbid, continues into 2024.
Possible candidates on the Democratic ticket might be Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar, Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg and New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker. Normally a governor or two would be included, but a lot more needs to be learned about our governors and their qualifications for national office. Possible candidates for the Republican Party might be retiring Ohio Sen. Rob Portman, Iowa Sen. Joni Ernst, Texas Sen. John Cornyn, Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson and Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski. John Kasich, former governor of Ohio, was ideal in 2020, but his time may have passed.
Definitely the person nominated should not be any 2020 election denier or those with extreme positions within either party. A “Great Compromiser” would of course be ideal, as the reality of political divisions with extremes within each party is sure to continue until the next generation of voters realizes it is not a political sin to compromise or to engage in a form of incrementalism that actually advances cures for what ails the country.
Wouldn’t it also be ideal if nominees would actually agree to the voluntary federal election contribution rules? It costs way too much to mount a campaign. The only way to solve that issue is if a nominee would support congressional mandates to those renewing licenses for use of the airwaves to provide a set amount of free air time to candidates on radio and television, including cable. The challenge: How to avoid a free-for-all involving an unrealistic number of candidates?
If I were a Democrat, I would vote for Booker with either Klobuchar or Buttigieg as the running mate.
If I were a Republican, I would vote for Hutchinson with Murkowski or Portman as the running mate.
Michael Jones, Chula Vista
Mitt Romney. That’s my answer to the “who” part of the question above. The “why” part of the question is more complicated.
I’ve been a lifelong Republican since I turned 18 way back in 1976. My mom was a Democrat, my father was a Republican, and I liked the logic my dad used to explain the difference: Republicans wanted lower taxes and less intrusive government; if you were wealthy, being a Republican was better, and if you aspired to one day be wealthy, the same argument applied.
Starting with the first presidential election I could vote in, the year I graduated from high school, when I voted for Gerald Ford who lost to Jimmy Carter, I’ve always preferred to back the Republican presidential candidate. The next election, 1980, I voted for Ronald Reagan. He wasn’t perfect, but he’s easily the best Republican president we’ve had since then.
I stayed true to the Republican Party, voting for George H.W. Bush in 1988. But I lost confidence in him due to the famous “Read my lips. No new taxes” lie, and the debacle with his vice president, Dan Quayle. So in 1992’s election I did something unthinkable: I didn’t vote for a Republican, instead choosing independent candidate Ross Perot. Perot, of course, didn’t win, but it set me on a path of independence and of no longer being beholden to the Republican Party — although I remain a registered Republican to this day.
In the ensuing years, I’ve watched as the Republican Party was co-opted by those who favored a religious, conservative, anti-liberal focus, and that’s not what I had signed up for. I didn’t vote for George W. Bush in 2000 or 2004 nor Donald Trump in 2016. (I didn’t vote for Hillary Clinton either — the one presidential election I didn’t vote in, although I voted for the other offices.)
Mitt Romney was the breath of fresh air I was looking for when he ran for president in 2008. He lost in the primary to John McCain, who made the mistake of choosing Sarah Palin as his running mate. Romney ran again in 2012, this time winning the Republican nomination. He won 24 states versus 26 plus Washington, D.C., for Barack Obama, but only won 47 percent of the popular vote versus 51 percent for Obama. Romney was the only Republican senator who voted to convict Trump in his first impeachment trial in 2020. That was about as brave as it gets. He was one of only seven Republicans voting to convict Trump in his second impeachment trial.
There’s a lot to like about Mitt Romney, and no way to expound on why in the limited space remaining. Just do a web search and read his Wikipedia history; you will come away impressed. While my dad had switched his party affiliation to independent long before he passed away in April at 93, I have remained a steadfast Republican for my initial reasons: lower taxes and less intrusive government. Like-minded Republicans need to change the party from the inside, and I can’t do that as an independent. Mitt Romney would be a great step forward.
Greg Jabin, Del Mar
Possible 2024 presidential candidates and/or running mates are Tim Scott, Republican senator from South Carolina; Nimrata Nikki Haley, Republican former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations; Ron DeSantis, Republican governor of Florida; Harold Ford Jr., Democratic former U.S. representative from Tennessee; Amy Klobuchar, Democratic senator from Minnesota; and/or Pete Buttigieg, Democratic U.S. Secretary of Transportation
What I would like to see in a candidate is someone who is younger than 70, in good physical health and has the mental acuity to do the job. I would like someone who is blind to color, race, ethnicity, religion, sexuality, marital status and gender. They should value individuals and/or community for what they say and do. They need to be tech-savvy and worldly, and understand that the U.S. is only one part of the world and that what happens here or there affects the U.S.
This person needs to be able to listen to all viewpoints, accept advice, make decisions that are fair and equal, and admit when they were wrong or don’t know the answer to the question. During this person’s campaign, I want to hear ideas on how to solve our problems (energy, border security, immigration, health care, inflation, etc.) and how to work with Congress to resolve these issues.
Pamela Koleber, Lakeside
Few people had heard of John F. Kennedy in 1958, or Jimmy Carter in 1974, or Bill Clinton in 1990 or Barack Obama in 2006. Two years out, the eventual nominees may well be unknown to us today.
We can, however, look to past presidents for traits to define our next one. For example, the next president should have:
- The resolve of Franklin D. Roosevelt, who refused to believe in 1932 that democracy was doomed to failure.
- The integrity of Harry Truman, who turned down commercial endorsements, “consulting” opportunities and lobbying contracts, saying that he would never diminish the integrity of the U.S. presidency.
- The inspirational abilities of John F. Kennedy, who rallied the youth of America, saying, “The torch has been passed to a new generation of Americans born in this century.”
- The inspirational rhetoric of Ronald Reagan, who reignited Americans’ faith in themselves with “a dream of an America that would be a shining city on a hill.”
- The call to action from Barack Obama, energizing the disenfranchised: “We are the change that we seek. Do we participate in the politics of cynicism, or the politics of hope?”
- The worldview of Richard Nixon, who ushered in a new era of U.S.-China relations.
- The worldview of George H.W. Bush, whose detailed knowledge of foreign relationships carried the world peacefully through the breakup of the Soviet Union.
- Bill Clinton’s command of domestic policy and politics that brought about the longest peacetime expansion of the economy in U.S. history.
There are five Democrats on this list and three Republicans, none of whom were perfect. All had flaws, but party politics aren’t as important as the strengths the next president brings to the Oval Office.
Chuck Dunning, La Jolla
This story originally appeared in San Diego Union-Tribune.