Happy iOS 8 Day! In just a few short hours from now, we'll all be huddled over our iPhones, iPads, and iPod touches eagerly waiting for the shiny goodness of the latest operating system. To keep you busy while waiting, today's Morning Report skims over all of the new reviews of Apple's upcoming hardware and software, and also details new security measures in place for iCloud. And don't forget to update all of your favorite apps today!
iPhone 6 Review Roundup: Looks Like Another Winner for Apple
In case you were wondering, Apple's embargo on reviews of the iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, and iOS 8 lifted Tuesday night, which is why so many high-profile tech websites including Engadget, The Verge, Re/code, and Yahoo wasted no time publishing their opinions on Cupertino's latest and greatest.
To the surprise of virtually no one, it appears Apple has once again hit it out of the ballpark, with reviewers praising the new curved sides and thin design of the new iPhones, as well as the sharper display of the larger 5.5-inch model, which The Verge also applauded for having roughly two days worth of battery life — a noticeable improvement from previous Apple smartphones, which often barely make it through an entire day on a single charge.
Several features of the new iPhone 6 models won't make an immediate impression on users, however: Re/code noted Wi-Fi speeds were indeed roughly double that of the iPhone 5S, but the promise of faster LTE will only come with future network upgrades, with only T-Mobile US offering a speed bump for now, as well as support for Wi-Fi calling.
Despite the super sized display and frame, David Pogue at Yahoo also singled out optical image stabilization (an iPhone 6 Plus exclusive) for specific praise, claiming it works "supremely well." Ditto for the larger iPhone's landscape keyboard, which now offers additional keys on either side.
The glowing reviews are likely to make the wait for Friday's launch even longer, but at least iPhone fans can rest easy knowing Apple hasn't let them down with the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus.
Apple Enables Two-Step Verification for iCloud
Ahead of today's release of iOS 8, Apple emailed customers on Tuesday to announce that two-step verification now protects iCloud as well as Apple IDs. First promised by CEO Tim Cook two weeks ago, an updated FAQ page on the Apple website walks users through the entire process, which now requires a four-digit verification code input from a trusted device in order to access iCloud.com.
The email and FAQ page also detail secure sign-in using app-specific passwords, which will be required for third-party apps starting October 1. The process should be familiar to Google and Microsoft users, and requires signing into the Apple ID website, browsing to the Password & Security section, then requesting a one-time app-specific password for applications such as Microsoft Outlook, Mozilla Thunderbird, or BusyCal, which currently do not offer support for two-step verification.
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