The new iPad Air goes on sale today [UPDATE: and I purchased one this morning]. For now, you can buy one at an Apple Store or at the online Apple Store, but I'm sure that before long you'll be able to get the new iPads elsewhere too. If you travel by airplane, you'll soon have even more opportunities to use that new iPad Air because the FAA announced yesterday, as reported by Matthew Wald of the New York Times, that passengers will soon be able to use an iPad or an iPhone in all phases of flight if you keep the device in Airplane Mode. No need to wait until you are above 10,000 feet. And now, the other news items of note from the past week:
- One the most-used apps on my iPhone is Fantastical. I loved the original version, and this week, a new version was released, Fantastical 2. It has an updated interface to match iOS 7 and adds a few new features. California attorney David Sparks posted this review, plus here is a review from Dan Frakes of Macworld. There are still times when I use the built-in Calendar app, but I love being able to scroll through the list of events or scroll across days at the top in the app, and it is much faster to create an event in Fantastical than in the built-in Calendar app thanks to the powerful natural language interface. Fantastical 2 will eventually cost $4.99 but is only $2.99 right now, and I strongly encourage you to buy it. Click here for Fantastical ($2.99):
- New York attorney Niki Black recommends some mobile apps to help you go paperless. Quite a few good suggestions in there.
- Allyson Kazmucha of iMore provides some interesting information on the Touch ID fingerprint sensor on the new iPhone 5s.
- Speaking of Touch ID, the always funny Joy of Tech comic provides this perspective on the security implications of the fingerprint sensor on the iPhone 5s.
- If you want to get apps that show off the power of the new iPad Air and the new iPad mini with Retina Display, Kelly Hodgkins of TUAW provides a list of the 39 apps that were highlighted by Apple.
- If you have young children, you know that they love to use the iPad and iPhone. Tamar Lewin of the New York Times discusses the sharp increase in iPad and iPhone use by youngsters.
- If you are traveling internationally and want to use your iPhone without incurring huge data charges, Jason Snell of Macworld has some good tips. My own strategy for international travel has been to keep my iPhone in Airplane Mode the whole time and only use it with Wi-Fi access, such as access provided by my hotel. I don't let people call me, but if they email me and tell me that they need to talk, I use Skype to call them at a "real" phone number. With iOS 7, you could also use the new FaceTime audio feature to place an audio call over Wi-Fi to another iPhone.
- If you need to communicate with folks using BlackBerry Messenger, you can now do so on an iPhone. Ellis Hamburger of The Verge has a review of the new BBM app.
- And finally, I presume that the bold new design of iOS 7 was created by graphics professionals in a high-end graphics program, but Václav Krejčí from the Czech Republic shows in this video that you can create all of the icons in iOS using Microsoft Word. Pretty neat. (via iMore)