We've come to the end of another year, and as we wave goodbye to 2013, we figured it was only fitting that we share the most popular stories published on Gear Live this year, as determined by our readers (we've also got the top ten most read stories regardless of publish date, as well as the ten most popular Gear Live videos of 2013!) These are the ten stories that were read the most, and when you consider that fact, it's pretty surprising to see what made the list. Let's kick it off with our most read story of the year:
Here at Gear Live, reviewing gadgets, putting together gadget photo galleries, and creating image thumbnails for our YouTube videos. The thing is, there isn't much I need to do to make the images look great, and as such, Photoshop has always felt like overkill--a tool that is way more powerful than I need. I recently spent time with the new Adobe Photoshop Elements 14. This is the prosumer version of Photoshop that immediately felt way more accessible upon launching the application than it's more capable big brother.
Apple has released OS X 10.11 El Capitan to the public, and all users with compatible Macs are able to download the updated version of Apple’s desktop operating system for free from the Mac App Store. Just launch the Mac App Store to grab the download, or if you don’t see it, you can use this link to take you right to it: OS X El Capitan
OS X El Capitan brings with it a slew of bug fixes and performance improvements, tightening up everything from last year’s Yosemite release. That said, there are still quite a few user-facing improvements as well. These include:
During a demo of the new iPhone 6s 3D Touch feature at the Hey Siri, Give Us A Hint event, Apple's Craig Federighi opened an email on his iPhone 6s from Phil Schiller that announced that OS X El Capitan would be released on September 30th. Apple's latest OS X 10.11 Mac operating system has been in beta since WWDC 2015 in June. Thanks to that peek at Federighi's email, we now know that all Mac users with compatible computers will be able to update to El Capitan three weeks from today, completely for free.
Parallels, the company that makes Parallels Desktop (our favorite software virtualization software for Mac,) has announced the release of Parallels Desktop 11. Interested users can buy Parallels Desktop 11 for $79.99, while users of prior versions 9 and 10 receive upgrade pricing of $49.99. Major operating system support in Parallels Desktop 11 includes support for the latest Microsoft OS, Windows 10, as well as Apple’s upcoming OS X 10.11 El Capitan, which is set to launch this fall.
Earlier today Apple released OS X El Capitan Developer Beta 5. Developers who are already running Yosemite can get the 1.34GB update through the Mac App Store, while those who are looking to install it for the first time will need to log in to the Apple Developer Portal. As for the rest of the world, OS X El Cap is set to launch this fall, focusing on tightening up OS X and crushing nagging bugs, while also introducing features like split view apps, expanded Spotlight, an expanded Notes app, performance improvements, and more to Apple's desktop operating system. Those interested in beta testing can head over to the Apple beta website.
Apple has just released the first software update for the Apple Watch. You can upgrade to Watch OS 1.0.1 by going through the Apple Watch app on your iPhone. To update:
- Launch the Apple Watch app
- Go into General
- Select Software Update
- Tap Download and Install
Aside from general performance improvements and bug fixes, Watch OS 1.0.1 brings improved performance for:
- Measuring stand activity
- Calculating calories for indoor cycling and rowing workouts
- Distance and pace during outdoor walk and run workouts
- Third-party apps
- Display support for new diverse emoji characters
- Additional language support for Brazilian, Portuguese, Danish, Dutch, Swedish, Russian, Thai, Turkish
To perform the update, your Apple Watch must be in range of your iPhone, connected to its charger, and have at least 50% battery life.
Apple published a page that shows off a bunch of third-party apps that various developers are working on for the Apple Watch. As you can see, there are a lot of big name companies on board, like Target, American Airlines, Nike, MLB, Instagram, Starwood Hotels, and many more. Fitness, travel, shopping, fun, social networking, and even entertainment apps are all included on the page.
The more you wear Apple Watch, the more you’ll realize just how personal a device it is. Because with so many different apps available, you can choose the ones that are most relevant to you, and create a customized experience. There are already apps for airlines, department stores, social networks, and more that take advantage of the unique opportunities the wrist brings. And with new apps being built for Apple Watch every day, this is just the beginning.
Our guess is that the vast majority of these apps will be ready on day one, when the Apple Watch is released on April 24. See anything that surprises you on this list?
Following its Spring Forward Apple Watch event, Apple has released iOS 8.2 publicly. The update brings about minor fixes, along with one big feature: Apple Watch support. In order to use the Apple Watch, you’ll need to be running iOS 8.2 on your iPhone 5, 5s, 5c, 6, or 6 Plus. After installing the update, you’ll find the new Apple Watch app on your home screen, which is what you will use to download apps and manage settings for your Apple Watch, should you pick one up.
iOS 8.3 will follow soon, with new diverse emoji and wireless CarPlay support. In the meantime, you can download iOS 8.2 now.
Apple has released the second developer preview of OS X Yosemite 10.10.3, and with it comes a more diverse group of emoji, featuring multiple skin tones. Rather than offering one hue, as has been standard practice for years, Apple will now offer a total of six different skin tones to choose from. You'll also find same sex couples, and families with and without children, all with skin tone modifier options. Other new emoji characters include new country flags being added to the mix.
Also found in the latest OS X developer preview is an update to the Mac version of the beta Photos app.
If you're a dev, you can download OS X 10.10.3 build 14D87h now from the Mac Dev Center, or by using the Software Update feature in the Mac App Store if you're already running beta software.