Apple’s notch ‘fix’ brings fat bezels back to the MacBook Pro

Twitter user @Jatodaro demonstrates how to use the new ‘Scale to fit below built-in camera’ feature. | @Jatodaro via Twitter

A new support document released yesterday details a “Scale to fit below built-in camera” option…

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Apple, Omicron, Disney, Baseball And Markets – 5 Things You Must Know Breaking News

Stocks remain volatile as Omicron worries linger over markets; Apple shares slide on iPhone 13 demand concerns; Square goes Block in Jack Dorsey-lead rebranding; Disney names Susan Arnold as Bog Iger’s board successor and Major League Baseball locks out its players after failing to reach a new collective bargaining agreement.

Alexa can now tell you if your washing machine stops or water is running Breaking News

Recently, Amazon introduced a feature that allowed Alexa to hear certain types of sounds, called Custom Sound Detection. Now, it’s adding two new specific Alexa sound detectors for “water running” and “appliance beeping” that can be used to set up routines or reminders. It also rolled a number of other new features for things like prescription refills, ultrasound motion detection and more. 

It was already possible to have Alexa identify those two specific sounds, but the new update means you won’t have to bother training it. With the new features, you can use the Alexa app to send a notification when the washer beeps to indicate your laundry is done. It can also remind you to turn off the sink of someone accidentally leaves the water running. 

Along the same lines, the update includes the introduction of ultrasound motion detection for routines on select Echo devices. At its September event, Amazon said that a feature would arrive to fourth-gen Echo and Echo Dot devices, designed to use an “inaudible ultrasound wave” to detect if there are people in a room. With the new routines, you can use Alexa to turn on lights when motion is detected near the device, for instance, or lower the thermostat when no motion is detected. 

Another new feature allows Amazon Pharmacy customers to ask Alexa to refill prescriptions and get proactive updates when they’re delivered. “You can also ask Alexa to call Amazon Pharmacy to connect with an Amazon Pharmacy customer care representative who can answer questions on topics like prescription status, account, billing, and also drug information and side effects,” Amazon said. 

Other new features include “preference teaching” that lets you teach Alexa which food or sports you like, dining suggestion (“Alexa, what should I eat?”), a TikTok video launcher, conversation mode (“Alexa, join the conversation”) and hands-free audio calls using Verizon Number share. Amazon also announced that customers can now pre-order the Echo Show 15 and have it ship on December 9th. The new features are now rolling out to Alexa devices, though some may be region-limited. 

Lithium mine pits electric cars against sacred Indigenous land Videos

As the United States turns to electric vehicles, solar and wind for its clean energy transition, the demand for lithium – used in rechargeable batteries – is on the rise. In a remote corner of the Nevada desert sits Thacker Pass, the site of a planned lithium mine that would make a major contribution to domestic supply of the mineral. But the project faces opposition from members of nearby Indigenous communities, who say the area holds spiritual, cultural and historical importance and would be irreversibly damaged by large-scale mining activity Subscribe to The Guardian on YouTube ► http://is.gd/subscribeguardian The Guardian publishes independent journalism, made possible by supporters. Contribute to The Guardian today ► https://bit.ly/3biVfwh Website ► https://www.theguardian.com Facebook ► https://www.facebook.com/theguardian Twitter ► https://twitter.com/guardian Instagram ► https://www.instagram.com/guardian

Apple’s 2021 App Store Awards highlight ‘connection’ Breaking News

Last year, Apple focused on quarantine life for its App Store Awards. For 2021, it’s continuing that concept with a focus on “connection” as its trend of the year — basically, things that brought us together even though we’re still dealing with a global pandemic. That trend award was bestowed upon five apps, including familiar names like Bumble and Among Us!. But the niche winners are even more interesting: there’s EatOkra, an app that helps you find black-owned restaurants; Canva, which helps anyone create pro-grade designs; and Peanut, a social network focused on connecting women to find support throughout major life events.

You’d probably be surprised by some of the winners for Apple’s mainstay categories too: the Apple TV app of the year was the boxing streaming service Dazn, something I’ve admittedly never heard of. The Apple TV game of the year, Space Marshals 3, also came out of seemingly nowhere. But the strong review scores for both of those apps make it clear that users genuinely enjoy them.

While the App Store Awards are very much a marketing exercise, it’s also a useful way to highlight some of the best apps users may have missed. (And I’m sure developers appreciate the recognition, and the aluminum App Store icon they can display on their shelves.) LumaFusion, the best iPad app of the year, makes complex multi-track video editing easy to do with your fingers. And Carrot Weather, the best Apple Watch app, looks like a truly unique watch face.

Apple App Store Award on a shelf
Apple

Here are the rest of Apple’s App Store Awards for 2021: 

  • iPhone app of the year: Toca Life World

  • Mac App of the year: Craft

  • iPhone game of the year: League of Legends: Wild Rift

  • Mac game of the year: Myst

  • iPad game of the year: MARVEL Future Revolution

  • Apple Arcade game of the year: Fantasian (the incredible RPG from the creator of Final Fantasy)