Fans Relive Final Fantasy 11’s Punishing Past On Private Servers

>

Back in the early 2000s, Final Fantasy 11 was famous for completely disrespecting players’ time. Masochistic and convoluted, the MMO drew in thousands of dedicated players who traded hours upon hours of grinding for the sweet feeling of accomplishment. Fifteen years later, more player-friendly MMOs monopolise the genre. And yet, there are still hundreds of fans foregoing cleaner gaming experiences for FF11‘s endlessly time-consuming and punishing challenges on legacy servers.
Continue reading “Fans Relive Final Fantasy 11’s Punishing Past On Private Servers”

iOS 11’s new ‘App of the Day’ feature can rocket downloads by over 2,000%

New data is out today from Apptopia on how iOS 11‘s App Store and its new app of the day and game of the day features are influencing downloads. With an app of the day feature, the company found a boost in downloads of up to 2,172%, while games saw an increase of up to 963%.

AirPods

Spotted by TechCrunch, Apptopia did a 30-day analysis of downloads since the new daily features have been live. An average of features from weekdays, weekends, paid apps/games, and non-paid apps/games saw downloads jump 1,747% for apps, with games downloads being boosted an average of 792%.

Here are some of the key takeaways:

  • Apps received a higher download boost than games
  • Weekday features are more effective than those on weekends
  • Free apps/games were downloaded more than paid apps/games

Other details about the analysis include that 5 of the 30 apps studied were paid, 11 of the 30 games were paid, 3 of the 5 paid apps were featured on a weekend, while 4 of the 11 paid games were on a weekend.

Apptopia notes that established apps like Starbucks saw a much lower boost in downloads, for multiple reasons.

Apps that were already ranking within the top 20 of their respective category before being featured, only received an average download boost of 44%. For games ranking within the top 20 of the Games category, it was 37%. This begs the question of whether or not Apple really cares about discovery for independent shops or lesser known apps. Apptopia Founder & COO Jonathan Kay dives deeper into that question here.

What is really cool to see is how powerful being featured is for independent developers.

19 apps went from unranked overall to being ranked somewhere in the overall charts. This means that some of these jumped more than 1,000 rank spots.

Another controversial way to boost app exposure is with Apple’s Search Ads. One of the biggest complaints of this program has been ad relevancy. Just last week, Apple expanded Search Ads to three more countries.

Check out the full report from Apptopia here.


Check out 9to5Mac on YouTube for more Apple news:

Neglected Pure Connect speaker app silenced in iOS 11’s war on 32-bit • The Register

Wireless speaker maker Pure appears to be more the first casualties in Apple’s war on 32-bit iOS apps.

Pure’s 32-bit Connect software for iThings won’t work on Apple’s new 64-bit-only iOS 11, meaning folks using Cupertino’s latest firmware and handsets can’t control their space-age hi-fis. The audio remote-control app joins various games, utilities and other 32-bit-only programs that are not allowed to run on iOS 11 and later.

Punters are urged to install the latest version of Apple’s operating system because it contains security bug patches. By upgrading or buying a new iPhone, folks have to ditch any old apps that haven’t been rebuilt as 64-bit ARMv8 executables, which includes Pure’s.

Sonos_PLAY_5_Box

Rejecting Sonos’ private data slurp basically bricks bloke’s boombox

READ MORE

Now Pure hardware owners who have moved to iOS 11 are complaining that their gizmos are “useless” without the Connect app to control them. Pure did not respond to El Reg‘s request for comment, and has not said when it expects a 64-bit app will be released. Android versions of Pure Connect are not affected, of course.

According to Pure’s website, a fix is in the works and an FAQ of workarounds via Wi-Fi can be found here. It may take some time for a rebuilt application to emerge as the people who wrote the code for the manufacturer are no longer in business, apparently.

“Due to circumstances beyond our control, including the closure of our third-party app developer, and the subsequent release of Apple’s iOS11, a few of you may be experiencing issues accessing the Pure Connect app,” Pure told customers.

“Unfortunately, Apple’s decision to remove support for apps created prior to 2015, which don’t natively run in 64-bit mode, will undoubtedly affect many apps, including our own.”

Part of the problem, it seems, is Pure’s inability to maintain and update its own apps, and it is most likely not alone in this respect: companies that have outsourced their mobile app programming are finding themselves locked out of iOS 11 because they can’t get the code or the tools or the people to rebuild their contract-developed software. The iOS App Store shows that the last update to Pure Connect was on June 25, 2015, more than two years ago, so Pure has been without a mobile developer for a while, it seems.

So on the one hand, it’s a shame to see organizations that were relying on outside developers now being caught out by the iOS crackdown. On the other hand, it’s not an overnight change.

You can’t fault Apple for springing this one on companies and programmers. The Cupertino giant has been warning of the 64-bit changeover for years, and since early 2015 all new apps and updates have been required to be submitted to the online store in 64-bit mode. In March, the iOS 10.3 update also alerted world-plus-dog that all future versions of the firmware would not support apps compiled in 32-bit mode.

Apple’s last 32-bit-processor iPhone was the iPhone 5C, released in 2013 and discontinued in 2015.

“‘Due to circumstances beyond our control’ – yeah, and you’ve only had two years to update your app,” one Reg reader scoffed at Pure in an email to us earlier today. “That’s my Jongo speakers rendered useless after only a year.” ®

Sponsored:
The Joy and Pain of Buying IT – Have Your Say

How to Scan Documents With iOS 11’s Notes App

iOS: iOS 11’s new built-in document scanning feature is both a time-saver and a convenient way to capture information. It makes it easy to attach real-world documents to your digital musings without leaving one app for another. It won’t replace any dedicated document scanning apps, but it’s a great alternative to buying a document scanning app if all you want is a signature-ready document you can export anywhere.

How to Start Scanning

To start scanning documents, open the Notes app and jump into a note, or create a new one. Hit the + in the middle of your screen and select the Scan Documents option. Align the document you’d like to scan and wait for the camera to completely highlight the entire document, which should scan automatically. You can add more documents after each scan, or hit the save button to end the procedure.

What it Can Do

After you scan your documents, you can tweak them in a few ways. You’re able to rotate, crop, and apply filters based on the document type (like the color filter to preserve scanned photos, or the black and white filter for traditional documents). You can also save the scanned document as a PDF for further editing, or store it in your iCloud Drive, locally on your iOS device, or in a third-party cloud storage service like Google Drive. Printing and sharing it to third-party apps is done through the Share button.

Article preview thumbnail
17 Simple Rules for Getting Organized and Decluttered

What would it take to get your life decluttered and organized? That might be a tall order for many…

Read more Read

Notes lets you edit the document as well. You can hit the Markup option to annotate the document, or sign it by choosing the signature option, where you can use your imported signature or write a new one then and there. If you’re on an iPad Pro you can use the Apple Pencil to sign the document. That’ll make demands field trip signatures a bit more bearable.

What it Can’t Do

While it does technically scan documents, the new Notes app doesn’t feature optical character recognition like other document-scanning iOS apps. Scanning a business card just nets you a properly cropped photo of said card. Sure, you could just type out the information right under it, but it would be much more useful for iOS 11 to handle the character recognition process automatically, and let me quickly assign it to a new or existing contact.

Apps like Finescanner (our mobile scanning app of choice) and Scanbot are able to recognize characters and let you work with the resulting text, but require in-app purchases to unlock the optical character recognition features. Still, despite the missing character recognition feature, Notes is a pretty decent document scanner.

Before you ditch your document scanning app for Notes, just know its limitations. Scanning a form that needs your John Hancock? Go for it. Trying to extract and convert information? Not happening—at least not in this version.

EFF criticizes iOS 11’s ‘misleading’ Bluetooth and Wi-Fi toggles for being a privacy and security risk

ios-11-control-center

The strange, unintuitive way Bluetooth and Wi-Fi toggles work in iOS 11 has drawn ire from many quarters. The latest voice is that of digital right group the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) which says that the “off-ish” setting now offered is misleading.

As we have covered in a previous story, Apple has changed the behaviour of the two toggles so that when they are flicked to the off position, the Bluetooth and wireless radios are not actually switched off. EFF says that this is “bad for user security” and calls for greater clarity from Apple.

See also:

As EFF points out, recent Bluetooth vulnerabilities mean that it is good practice to disable both Wi-Fi and Bluetooth are disabled when not in use. The group goes on to reiterate the problem introduced in iOS11 so that flicking the toggles to the off position actually just disconnects from networks and devices.

What actually happens in iOS 11 when you toggle your quick settings to “off” is that the phone will disconnect from Wi-Fi networks and some devices, but remain on for Apple services. Location Services is still enabled, Apple devices (like Apple Watch and Pencil) stay connected, and services such as Handoff and Instant Hotspot stay on. Apple’s UI fails to even attempt to communicate these exceptions to its users.

It gets even worse. When you toggle these settings in the Control Center to what is best described as “off-ish,” they don’t stay that way. The Wi-Fi will turn back full-on if you drive or walk to a new location. And both Wi-Fi and Bluetooth will turn back on at 5:00 AM. This is not clearly explained to users, nor left to them to choose, which makes security-aware users vulnerable as well.

EFF says that the unintuitive way the toggles works represents a security and privacy problem. It says that Apple is placing users at risk by trying to keep them connected to Apple devices and services. It is a loophole, EFF suggests, that Apple could very easily fix.

At a bare minimum, Apple should make the Control Center toggles last until the user flips them back on, rather than overriding the user’s choice early the next morning. It’s simply a question of communicating better to users, and giving them control and clarity when they want their settings off — not “off-ish.”