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Safari can now stream 4K HDR and Dolby Vision content on Netflix with macOS Big Sur

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We recently mentioned that macOS Big Sur includes a new version of Safari with several enhancements, including support for HDR videos. It turns out there’s a platform that’s already benefiting from these Safari updates, as users can now finally watch 4K HDR content on Netflix with a Mac.

Netflix has been offering 4K content for a long time, but Mac users have never been able to watch them due to hardware limitations, since the platform relies on the HEVC codec.

Even after Apple launched new Mac models fully compatible with HEVC, Apple hasn’t updated Safari to support the new technology, which is one of the main reasons for Netflix to limit its content to 1080p resolution on macOS.

With macOS Big Sur, which is currently available as a beta developer, Mac users can finally watch movies and TV shows on Netflix in 4K resolution. It also works with Dolby Vision and HDR10, which delivers more brilliant and vivid colors.

Unfortunately, according to Apple, the 4K High Dynamic Range stream requires a Mac introduced in 2018 or later. That means older Macs can only play 1080p videos on Netflix, even with macOS Big Sur installed.

Apple has also enabled the VP9 codec for apps on iOS 14 and tvOS 14, which allows users to watch 4K HDR videos on YouTube for the first time, but Safari 14 is yet to get this codec.

As AirPlay 2 now supports 4K video streaming on iOS 14 and macOS Big Sur, it makes sense that Apple is committed to enabling such content across all its platforms.

OMG! Netflix on macOS Big Sur’s Safari browser just gave me 4K Stream with Dolby Vision on MacBook Pro! Earlier it was just 1080p with Dolby Vision. This is amazing. 😌 pic.twitter.com/afUQPeKisI

— Ishan Agarwal (@ishanagarwal24) June 28, 2020

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Report: Foxconn investing $1 billion in India following Apple’s strong request

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Apple has some ambitious plans in India, as the company has already confirmed that it will open the first Apple Store there by 2021. And now Foxconn is allegedly investing $1 billion in its India facility, where the Taiwanese factory already assembles some iPhone models.

According to a Reuters report, Apple is gradually moving its production line from China to other countries, and scaling up the manufacturing process in India is part of the plans. Apple would have requested Foxconn to expand its facilities located in Sriperumbudur, where the two companies are already assembling the iPhone XR.

The expansion plan is expected to be finished in three years, and it will allow other iPhone models to be made in India. Sources told Reuters that these investments will add over 6,000 jobs to the Sriperumbudur facility.

While India is the second-largest smartphone market in the world, Apple only accounts for 1% of sales there. The country has high import taxes, which makes Apple’s product prices too high when compared to the competition. Building products locally can help Apple reduce some costs, which may result in more attractive prices for consumers.

If the plans succeed, Apple might use Foxconn facilities in India to export iPhone models to other countries.

‘With India’s labor cheaper compared with China, and the gradual expansion of its supplier base here, Apple will be able to use the country as an export hub,’ Neil Shah of Hong Kong-based tech researcher Counterpoint said.

Apple is rumored to launch its official online store in India later this year.

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iOS 14: How to pin text messages on iPhone for quick access

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A really useful new feature included in iOS 14 is the ability to favorite conversations for easy access at the top of the Messages app. Follow along for how to pin text messages on iPhone and iPad.

The Messages app gets a few notable upgrades with this year’s major iOS update including mentions, an emoji search bar, the ability to pin conversations, and also add a photo for the icon of group messages.

The pin message feature is quick and easy to use and places your favorited conversations at the top of the Messages app with large icons. You can pin up to 9 messages on iPhone and iPad.

Note: iOS 14 is available as a free public beta as well as a developer beta. Read more here on how to install them.

iOS 14: How to pin text messages on iPhone and iPad

  1. Open the Messages app
  2. Find a conversation you want to pin, long-press on it
  3. Tap Pin ____________
  4. Now you’ll see the pinned message at the top of the app
  5. To undo a pin, long-press on a message or the pinned icon and tap Unpin ___________

Here’s how the process looks:

iOS 14 How to pin text messages on iPhone walkthrough 1

You can add up to 9 pinned messages, including both iMessages and standard text messages and messages to individuals or groups.

How to unpin messages on iPhone and iPad

Once you’ve hit the maximum of 9, you’ll see an alert to unpin a conversation to add a new one.

Here’s what it looks like to unpin a message:

  • Long-press the pinned message icon or the message thread from the list below

iOS 14 How to pin text messages on iPhone walkthrough 2

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Apple News+ sees another free month promotion as audio stories are set to launch

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Apple News+, the company’s paid offering is running a new promotion for users who have tried the service and canceled their subscriptions. The new deal offers previous customers another free month of Apple News+ as the new audio stories are set to launch with the upcoming release of iOS 13.6.

If you haven’t tried Apple News+, the standard welcome at the top of the News+ tab in the Apple News app encourages you to try it for free for one month before paying the $10/month regular price.

Now, Apple is offering a second free month to those who have given it a try but canceled the subscription.

As shown in the images above, Apple is using the “Get 1 More Month” offer to entice previous subscribers to give the service another shot.

The promotion comes as Apple News+ Audio is set to launch with iOS 13.6 in the near future.

We first got a look at the new Apple News+ Audio feature with the iOS 13.5.5 beta (renamed to iOS 13.6). It brings professionally narrated audio stories curated from the Apple News team to your device. We went hands-on with the Apple News+ Audio feature after uncovering it early.

At the end of last year, Apple News+ ran a free three-month trial during the holidays to boost its users. That came just a couple of weeks after a report claimed the service was having trouble getting new customers.

Notably, just last month, The New York Times left Apple News — the free version of Apple’s news platform — which was a little over a year after it and the Washington Post said no to joining the paid Apple News+ service.

Does another free month interest you at all in trying Apple News+ again? Or did you not find it worth the $10/month? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

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