New Britney Spears Album to Land Exclusively on Apple Music

Chance Miller, reporting for 9to5Mac:

Just after it was revealed that Frank Ocean’s highly-anticapted album “Boys Don’t Cry” would be coming exclusively to Apple Music, another high-ticket exclusive has been revealed. Britney Spears today announced that her new album, her first in three years, will be coming exclusively to Apple Music on August 26th.

The recent leak from Time Warner regarding Eddie Cue’s not so professional demeanor during TV deal negotiations apparently isn’t holding back Apple Music. This makes me think Cue’s relaxed and casual persona is perfect for negotiations with the entertainment industry but ineffective with major TV networks.

FBI Enlists Israeli Firm Cellebrite to Unlock Shooter’s iPhone

The Apple v. FBI case has been everywhere lately, but this week’s coverage really caught my attention. The FBI moved to postpone the hearing scheduled on Tuesday. I ran across an article on MacRumors detailing the most recent twist and explaing why the FBI made the move:

Israeli mobile software developer Cellebrite is helping the FBI in its attempt to unlock the iPhone at the center of the San Bernadino shooter investigation…if the software company succeeds, then the FBI will no longer need the help of Apple.

You can’t help but wonder how long the FBI has been sitting on this information. Unfortunately, it seems the FBI’s goal was to set a precedent with this case even though they probably haven’t needed Apple’s help for some time. The American public has overwhelmingly supported Apple, and I think this week’s events are the first stages of the FBI ultimately waiving the white flag. Don’t be surprised to see a report in the coming weeks that they’ve cracked the iPhone and no longer need to pursue the case against Apple.

The 9.7-inch iPad Pro Has Only 2 GB of RAM

Apple didn’t mention this on stage the other day, but I saw on MacStories this morning that the new 9.7″ iPad Pro only has 2GB of RAM.

2 GB of RAM was one of the first things I heard about the new device yesterday, and part of the reason why I’m going to stick with the 12.9-inch Pro. In addition to a more comfortable iOS experience, I like knowing that I’m using the most powerful iPad hardware currently available (I don’t count the camera as essential to what I need to do on an iPad).

This is disappointing considering the 12.9″ iPad Pro is stuffed with 4GB of RAM.

Overcast 2.5 Adds Dark Theme, File Uploads

The best keeps getting better. I’m glad Marco added a few features for patrons this time around. Federico had some good coverage on the update over on MacStories.

With Overcast 2.5, launching today on the App Store, Marco Arment is introducing the first features available only to Overcast patrons: a dark theme, and the ability to upload audio files to Overcast’s cloud.

If you haven’t already, go download this app. It’s excellent.

Review: Ulysses 2.5 for iPad and, now, iPhone

Ulysses has become the primary tool I use to write on my Mac, iPad and now iPhone. The app was just updated adding iPhone support. David Chartier, writing for MacStories, summed it up best.

I call Ulysses a writing environment, though not really a publishing environment…because you’re surrounded with a rich set of writing tools. Put another way, it’s one of the very few apps that feels relatively complete. That doesn’t mean it’s finished or there’s nothing left to fix or add. It’s more that Ulysses leaves me with the fewest questions, frustrations, and frictions of any writing app I’ve used.

Check out David’s full review on MacStories.

Apple Introduces iPhone 6s Smart Battery Case

I saw this over on MacStories this morning and was admittedly a bit shocked:

Apple today introduced the new iPhone Smart Battery Case for the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6. Available in White or Charcoal Gray, the Smart Battery Case includes a built-in battery which will boost your iPhone’s battery life for talk time up to 25 hours and internet use up to 18 hours on LTE.

The Smart Battery Case is available to purchase from today for $99. The case’s exterior is silicone whilst the interior is a soft microfiber lining. It also features a “soft elastomer hinge design”, which Apple claims will make it easy to put the case on an iPhone and take it off.

Apple always makes sure to tout how good the battery life is on its iPhones so it’s interesting to see them release a pretty clunky looking battery case. It is worth noting that I haven’t seen a variation of the case for the 6s Plus, which packs a much bigger battery than the 6s already.

Jason Snell’s iPad Pro Wish List

After reviewing the iPad Pro for a few weeks, Jason Snell put together a wish list that includes his frustration, which I share, about the lack of third party keyboards available:

With the iPad Pro, there was a single accessory that didn’t come from Apple: Logitech’s Create keyboard, which uses the Smart Connector port and provides a more traditional laptop keyboard experience than Apple’s own Smart Keyboard.

Logitech Create lacks any real viewing angle adjustment, but the iPad Pro can be lowered for writing or drawing in addition to the upright position for typing.

That’s fine, but neither the Create nor the Smart Keyboard really do it for me. The Create is more of a case, requiring you to attach it to the iPad–a commitment I’m usually loath to make, because I constantly switch back and forth between using the iPad Pro with a keyboard and using it as a free-floating tablet. And the Smart Keyboard doesn’t really work for me because it’s too bulky to be a cover and doesn’t offer the key travel (or additional row of keys) that traditional keyboards do.