16 3D Touch tips iPhone 6S users must learn

28 Sep 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

New pink iPhones prove popular as record weekend sales expected.

SAN FRANCISCO/SYDNEY: The iPhone 6s and 6s Plus hit stores around the world on Sept 25, kicking off what is expected to be a record weekend of sales as customers scrambled to buy Apple Inc’s marquee product in pink for the first time. Eager buyers – joined by at least one robot – flocked to Apple stores from Sydney to New York and San Francisco, itching to get their hands on new models boasting an improved camera and a screen feature Apple calls ‘3D Touch’, which performs different functions depending on how hard a user presses. “It’s very intuitive. But everything else is different, making it a much better proposition to buyers than last year’s phone,” says Chris Smith, writer for Boy Genius Report, a site that focuses on the mobile and consumer electronic markets.

I’m really excited to see what developers do with it,” Leah Bentley, a 22-year-old software developer from Emeryville, California, said inside Apple’s San Francisco store after purchasing her phone. For all the sophisticated technology packed into the new iPhones, customers interviewed by Reuters were most excited by a more low-tech feature: the ‘rose gold’ finish, a new shade that Apple introduced with the current phone. The novel hue – essentially sparkling pink – accounted for more than a third of early in-store sales, according to FBR Capital Markets analyst Daniel Ives, citing conversations with buyers. One store at least was buzzing, as Apple chief executive Tim Cook made a surprise visit to company’s store in Georgetown, Washington, to raucous cheers from employees and shoppers.

Analysts expect 12 million to 13 million phones to fly off the shelves in the first weekend, up from more than 10 million last year when the launch of the hugely successful iPhone 6 was delayed in China, the world’s biggest smartphone market. The stronger screen should also lessen the chances of screen cracks, as Apple claims it’s made from the most durable glass in the smartphone industry, reports Joanna Stern for The Wall Street Journal. It usually announces first weekend sales on the following Monday. “I obviously have my work and other things to attend to and can’t spend two days lining up so my boss at work suggested I take one of the robots down and use it to stand in my place,” she said, via an iPad mounted on top of the wheeled robot. After eight main games, many spin-offs and 93 million copies sold, Assassin’s Creed is moving into the modern era with its biggest world yet in Assassin’s Creed Syndicate.

A “deep” press on the email app for example gives you a preview of the email without fully entering the app, whereas a “deeper” press will open the app full screen. 3D Touch also allows for cursor control. “In a text entry field, press on the keyboard and you can slide your finger around as a cursor, to make text editing easier,” says Gizmag. Apple has said just a fraction of its customers have upgraded to the iPhone 6 – analysts estimate less than 30% – suggesting there is room to grow. This time the playground is a meticulous recreation of London in 1868, a mecca of trade and technology basking in the glow of the industrial revolution that was also home to corruption, vicious street gangs and some horrific living conditions for those on the lower rungs of the social ladder. Still, Apple has only about 16% of the global smartphone market compared to 81% for devices running Google Inc’s Android system, according to tech research firm IDC’s projections for this year.

More important than customer appetite for upgrades is sales outside the United States, particularly in China, said Aaron Rakers, an analyst at Stifel Nicolaus & Co. This might seem short for an experience of this scope, but given the nine Ubisoft studios contributing to the effort are located all across Europe, Asia and North America (lead by a team in Quebec), it would have been possible for development to continue 24 hours a day. The massive production has yielded a game that adds much to the tried and true formula of the now eight-year-old series — introducing the main series’ first playable female assassin and greatly refining the way players get around. It is filled with characters both fictional and historical, but the true star of the whole thing is unequivocally London. “I don’t want to know how [horse-drawn] carriages are built,” says author Judith Flanders, “I’m curious to know: how did the coachman get up on the seat?” As the writer of books including The Victorian City: Everyday Life in Dickens’ London, Flanders is intensely interested the minutiae of Victorian London life, which is why Ubisoft had her consult on the details of the city and its inhabitants for Syndicate. There happened to be an old coach nearby where we were talking so Flanders was able to test her hypotheses directly (and she reported back on how coachmen would have done it: “with extreme difficulty”), but not all her research is so hands-on. “I would get an email from Jean-Vincent [Roy, Ubisoft’s on-staff historian]”, says Flanders, “he would send me a question like ‘what did men do with their hats when they went inside in public places?’ “So I would find him a photograph of a restaurant which still has its fittings, and above the seats there were [compartments] like on an aeroplane, but there were just sort of rods and men would turn their hats upside-down and stick them on there”.

Lacklustre offerings this year from Samsung Electronics Co Ltd will help Apple stand out in the marketplace, said analyst Patrick Moorhead of Moor Insights & Strategy. Shares of audio chipmaker Cirrus Logic Inc jumped 15 percent after iFixit’s tear-down revealed that Apple had used its chips, as it did in previous iPhones. However, and maybe even more importantly, I think that as human beings we all have the deep-rooted fantasy to learn more about our past and where we come from”, says Côté. “At the core of the franchise is the principle of reliving a part of our shared history. The space between landmarks does feel compressed, but the opening of the bridge felt identical, the Thames was exactly as filthy as in real life (though maybe broader, with more boats and less chip packets), and the huge mass of Westminster Palace and Big Ben looming in the mist was perfectly captured.

This is why the historical figures featured (in the case of Syndicate I spotted Karl Marx, Charles Dickens, Alexander Graham Bell and many others) are always in on the conspiracy. Assassin’s Creed has always had the option of playing stealthily or engaging directly in combat, and while previous games expected players to balance these two approaches using one character, Syndicate smartly splits it up so that Evie is more suited to the quiet approach and Jacob more to the brash. “In playtests, we’ve seen there are players who play a lot with Evie, and there’s players who will play a lot with Jacob, for their own good reasons,” Pelland says, adding that the game purposefully doesn’t force players to use both equally. “It’s the player’s choice, it’s player creativity”, he says.

The difference in the way the world reacts to the player depending on their choice of character, as well as the playful dynamic between the two siblings, was a highlight of my few hours with the game, providing a great deal of charm and levity that I’ve felt was missing from some of the previous entries in the series.

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