Wednesday, December 4, 2019

Put a FaceTime Link in Email or Text Message to Direct Recipient to Call FaceTime

Apple provided a multi-page document in September 2017 that describes several URL methods that are supported by system apps on iOS, macOS, and watchOS 2 and later. Native iOS apps and web apps running in Safari on any platform can use these methods to integrate with system apps and provide a more seamless experience for the user. For example, if an iOS app displays telephone numbers, software designer can use an appropriate URL to launch the Phone app whenever someone taps one of those numbers. Similarly, clicking an iTunes link launches the iTunes app and plays the song specified in the link. When a user clicks a link, the response depends on the platform and the installed system apps.

This Apple document describes the methods that require special attributes or special formatting in order to be understood by the associated system app. As a result, this document does not describe all URL schemes supported on different Apple platforms.

We've found that regular users can apply these techniques in some every day tasks in the Notes app or in iMessage or the Mail app. For example, if a user wants customers (iOS only) to make contact on FaceTime rather than by telephone, the user can put a Native app URL string in a text message or email in the following format: facetime://user@example.com

For FaceTime audio calls for iOS customers only the format is:
facetime-audio://user@example.com

The user replaces "user@example.com" with their own email address. However, the user must set the iPhone to use an Apple ID as well as the phone number.





FaceTime calls can be received when a user sets their iPhone to "Use your Apple ID for FaceTime". Once this command is selected, the user then logs into their Apple ID or crates another Apple ID account.

Once the user is signed in to FaceTime the user can also assign additional real email addresses to use to receive FaceTime video or FaceTime audio calls.

To add additional emails ...

Open the Settings app in iOS and go to “FaceTime”

Tap on “Add Another Email…” and enter the email address to add to FaceTime as “user@email.com” format

Adding more email addresses to FaceTime in iOS is allowed.

Users will receive a verification message at the assigned email address.

When the email address is verified, users can make and receive FaceTime video and voice calls with that email address. Users also have the option of selecting a Caller ID to use from any of the assigned emails or the phone number. FaceTime can also work from an Apple iPod, iPad or retired iPhone without a phone number.

For more link information, see FaceTime Links from the Apple Developer Documentation Archive ...


Wednesday, November 27, 2019

What is a Smartphone Screen Made of?

Whether you have an iPhone, a Samsung, or a Motorola, all smartphones are comprised of three basic components: a liquid crystal display, wires that detect touch, and a protective glass cover. Some models are also starting to utilize emerging technologies such as screens that incorporate touch sensitivity in the display. Keep reading for a more in-depth explanation of what smartphone screens are made of.

What is a Smart Phone Screen Made of?


Protective Glass Cover

Covering and protecting the front of the phone is the glass cover. Believe it or not, the material from which smartphone screens are made is very strong, durable, and increasingly shatter-resistant. When Steve Jobs first created the iPhone, he contracted with the Corning Corporation to come up with a product to protect his world-changing invention. Corning dusted off a type of super-strong glass they’d made in the 1960s that never really caught on commercially. It was a perfect fit for the iPhone, and Gorilla Glass was born. Gorilla Glass has four main properties: hardness, thinness, lightness, and scratch resistance. On the Mohs scale of mineral hardness, Gorilla Glass rates a nine. For comparison, diamond—the hardest element in the world—rates a 10 on the Mohs scale. Smartphones were the first product to utilize the strong glass, but now you can also find it in laptops, tablets, wearable technologies such as smart watches, and GPS systems.


Liquid Crystal Display & Touch Screen

All images on a smartphone are displayed on a liquid crystal display, a technology most TVs and computer monitors also use. An electrical current adjusts the color of the individual pixels to create an image. While TVs use a fluorescent backlight to light the image, a phone uses LED backlights to save space and power. On top of the display is a touch screen, which is essentially a grid of wires that generates an electrical field that detects your touch. When you touch a spot on the screen, your finger disrupts the electrical field. The phone can locate the disruption and interpret it as a tap. A capacitive touch screen won’t detect pressure the way a resistive touch screen does, which is why it won’t register the touch of a stylus or fingernail.

Tuesday, November 26, 2019

5 Ways to Market Your Small Business Online

When you want to grow your small business, it’s extremely important that you utilize some form of online marketing. You’ll be hard-pressed to find a business that doesn’t have a website and social media accounts. You may feel hesitant about diving into online marketing because of the costs associated with many tactics, but it’s okay to smart small. We offer some tips on how to market your small business online—as a bonus, all of them are budget friendly.

1. Know Your Demographic

One of the most important aspects of marketing is knowing the details about your intended demographic. This information will determine how you should craft your ads, as well as the sites you may target. There are a few different ways you can reach the right customers.

2. Invest in Email Marketing

Of the different paid advertisement types, email marketing is definitely one of the more affordable options. It can cost businesses around a couple hundred dollars a month, but it has the potential to generate a substantial ROI—many businesses earn nearly $40 for every $1 they invest.

3. Have a Website

This may seem obvious, but some business neglect putting up a website, or they have one and completely ignore it. A functional website, however, plays an integral role in effectively growing your business. This is where customers can learn more about what you have to offer, and they can easily contact you with any questions. Since many individuals do much of their browsing from their phone, make sure you have a mobile-friendly website.

4. Build a Blog

Another important aspect of a business’s website is a blog. Google loves useful content, and its algorithm will recognize keywords, which may increase your website’s ranking. If you want to truly optimize your blog, know that Google likes bullet points and lists. It’s also important to note that, while keywords are important, you may get penalized if you stuff your content with them.

5. Have a Facebook

A Facebook page allows customers to see what’s new with your business, interact with you, and post positive reviews. When you build social media accounts, you can use them to link back to each other to build awareness. If you find Facebook works well for you, you can eventually promote your business on the site.


Monday, November 18, 2019

Ways that Drones are Changing Businesses

Technology is constantly changing today. In our cars, homes, and even the workplace, technology is improving our everyday lives. Specifically, unmanned aerial vehicles are significantly contributing to workplace improvements today. Productivity, safety, convenience, and security are just some of the ways that drones are changing businesses.

Boost Productivity

Drones are greatly increasing productivity in the workplace. They can be used for various purposes, such as mapping, surveillance, and inspections. A drone’s versatility allows for significantly improved jobsite productivity. Specifically, they’re able to inspect any safety issues, analyze the noise footprints, and identify and maximize revenue. Companies can also inspect for damages in hard to reach places. For example, insurance companies can use drones for property inspection.

Ensure Worker and Field Safety

Drones also maintain worker safety. In many industries, drones can monitor workers from a secure location. From there, drones spot hazards and assess any potential risks. With this, managers don’t have to put workers at risk in potentially dangerous situations. Additionally, drones can spot structural issues in hard to reach areas. Engineers can use drones to spot issues in bridges, dams, buildings, and construction sites without putting workers at risk. Using drone inspections reduces human injury and ensures a safe work environment.

Add Convenience

For certain industries, such as package delivery, drones offer great convenience. A drone’s ability to fly and carry a certain amount of weight makes it optimal for home deliveries where a car and driver were previously needed. Some companies, like Amazon and UPS, are experimenting with drone usage for a cheaper, more reliable package delivery system. In fact, drones can even be used for food delivery. Their unmanned flying capabilities allow for a faster, more efficient response time. Still, airspace restrictions and legality prohibit this delivery system to be used on a grand scale yet. The drone travel’s convenience makes it a promising feature for the future of delivery services.

Increase Security

Their ability to reach great heights and hard-to-reach places make drones excellent for workplace security. In stores and businesses, drones can spot theft and shoplifting better than traditional security systems. Security cameras, for instance, typically can only monitor a certain radius before hitting a blind spot. Drones do not face this issue. Security drones survey an entire property, can alert law enforcement, and can even tag intruders with a dye pack or other protective measure.

Thursday, November 14, 2019

The Smart Way to Move a Computer During an Office Move

An office move can cause many people stress. The possibility of breaking or losing important, and expensive, pieces of equipment vital to your job increases during a move. The most important piece in today’s working world is a computer. Here’s the smart way to move a computer during an office move.

Organize the Wires


An easy mistake plenty of people make happens before they take their computer apart for a move, which is not organizing all the wires. A computer has many pieces you will have to transport, and wires are where it starts to get messy. Make your life a whole lot easier by labeling each wire and color coding them, so you can keep things in order during the move.

Place it in a Heavy-Duty Box


Since a lot of different equipment will move from one building to another, ensure you place the computer and all of its parts in a heavy-duty box. This way, you can avoid any potential damage that may come to it as you transport it.

Use Cushions


In addition to placing it in a heavy-duty box, you should also surround the computer with soft materials, like blankets and pillows, so it doesn’t get damaged. A computer monitor can easily get scratched, so wrap a blanket around it first. Then, place the wrapped computer in the container.

Don’t Carry Too Much


Another common mistake people make when they move is carrying too much at once. You many think you can handle it all, but you should handle an expensive piece of equipment, like a computer, with care.

Make Sure It’s on a Flat Surface


As you move your computer to another office, place the box on a flat surface. Your computer holds a lot of value, and you shouldn’t put the box on top of something that’s not sturdy. This decreases the risk any damage will happen to your equipment.

Following the smart way to move a computer during an office move will help you keep that valuable desktop protected.

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

The Largest Cyberattacks on Businesses

Cyberattacks are one of the biggest threats many businesses face today. This is a large reason why so many companies invest so much time and money to prevent data breaches. Given how much we rely on the internet and computers, every industry is vulnerable. Every industry has a responsibility to protect their employees, partners, and customers because if cybersecurity isn’t a priority, a company will likely face huge repercussions. To learn from past mistakes, here are some of the largest cyberattacks on business.

Yahoo!

From 2013 to 2014, Yahoo! faced one of the largest cyber-attacks on a business with over three billion user accounts affected. The Yahoo! hackers were able to obtain names, email addresses, phone numbers, and birthdates. As a result, Yahoo! lost over $350 million from its sale price. As a result of the hack, Verizon ended up buying Yahoo! for $4.8 billion in 2016.


Marriott

Another significant data breach happened to Marriott International from 2014 to 2018. Around 500 million Marriott customers suffered from stolen data, such as contact information, passport number, travel information, and more. This breach happened to Starwood hotels in 2014, and Marriott took on the issue after acquiring them in 2016. However, they were unaware of this fact upon purchase, as they didn’t discover the data breach until 2018.

Adult Friend Finder

Internet hackers were able to obtain 412.2 million accounts on The FriendFinder Network. The information collected included names, passwords, email addresses, and more back from over 20 years. It then came to light this data breach had been Local File Inclusion.

Target

Even though there is one of the biggest retail chains in the United States, Target experienced a hack in 2013. Hackers collected contact, credit, and debit card information, which harmed up to 110 million people right as the holiday season hit. Attackers pulled off the hack via malware in Target’s cash registers. The cost of the Target data breach was around $202 million.

Tuesday, October 29, 2019

New Ways AI and Ultrasound are Working Together

During a prenatal ultrasound, the technician’s job is to scan the pregnant woman’s womb and get images of the baby. Depending on how far along the mother-to-be is, the baby may be active and moving in the womb, which can pose a challenge for the tech. Furthermore, a standard ultrasound scan produces hundreds of images—if a doctor wants to see a specific one, then they have to flip through all the images to find it.

Artificial intelligence is helping to ease challenges like these. AI can consume, process, and analyze massive of amounts of data in real time at high speeds, improving efficiency and diagnostics and creating clearer images during these medical exams. With its ability to pick out the ideal image from thousands in a data set, artificial intelligence is leading to the automation of time-consuming tasks.

Ultrasound technology has vastly evolved over the years, and integrating AI into ultrasound systems began a few years ago with the goal of increasing workflow and speed. Artificial intelligence makes it possible for the doctor to pull a specific image and all associated images automatically. It can also select the best scanning slice view for a specific exam, extract it from a 3D dataset, and improve the reproducibility—all regardless of the sonographer’s skill level. Many high-end medical systems have already integrated some level of AI, and most new systems going forward will automatically feature AI.


Ultrasound machines use anatomical intelligence, whereas AI can instantly identify, color-code, and segment the anatomy in the scanning area. The automation provides visual mapping of screened anatomy with minimal user interaction. In a standard exam of the human brain, it takes several minutes for the user to identify the planes in the brain, and knowing the planes requires a lot of training and work. With AI, the user will only need a starting point on the brain, and the system will take the necessary measurements and store them.

Some companies are also adding AI voice recognition features to their ultrasound machines. The new voice-activated controls will allow the sonographer to operate the machine hands-free. Alternatively, the technician can hold the probe in one hand and the needle in another and conduct the procedure without an assistant. Voice activation frees up the tech to focus on the patient and the image instead of switching hands and reaching to adjust the machine.

Monday, October 14, 2019

Four Unique Ideas for Smart Home Upgrades

If you’re thinking about transitioning into a smart home, here are some unique ideas for smart phone upgrades that can optimize your home’s capabilities.

Smart locks

Smart locks are great additions to any smart home, allowing users to lock and unlock doors with a single click on a smartphone. Most are compatible with virtual assistants such as Alexa, Google Assistant, or Siri. When they’re paired with a smart doorbell or door camera, smart locks are also helpful for people who can’t always get to the door quickly. See who’s at the door, communicate through the doorbell device, and even unlock the door without the hassle of rushing to the door. You can also give out temporary “guest keys” for visitors. This feature is perfect for overnight visitors or for rental guests if you’re renting out your home or using room-sharing platforms.


Smart garage door

Smart garage doors add security. You’ll no longer need to press an opener multiple times to open the garage door, and you can open and close the door from anywhere with your smartphone. Most smart doors are also compatible with virtual assistants, which can notify you when the door is left open and swiftly close it. Pair the door with security cameras for a live feed of the garage and surrounding areas to remotely monitor it.

Smart window treatments

Smart window treatments are a relatively new smart home option. Investing in smart blinds can save energy and add convenience. Dog barking up a storm outside? Close the blinds to minimize the noise. You can also close your blinds at the hottest point of the day to protect your furniture and hardwood flooring from sun damage and to keep your house cooler naturally. Best of all, you can control your blinds from anywhere. Even when you’re at home, you can use your smartphone or virtual assistant to control your blinds so that you don’t have to get up and close all your shades.

Smart refrigerator

A smart refrigerator can make life a lot easier. Features differ greatly by model, but here are some of the most common features:
  • Looks up recipes. Your smart refrigerator can browse the Internet for recipes, add ingredients to your shopping list, and tell you how to make a dish. Say goodbye to throwing together last-minute meals.
  • Creates grocery lists. Some smart fridges can learn your eating habits and add items to your grocery list automatically. Drink a can of soda every day after work? Never worry about running out again—your fridge will plan for you.
  • Shows you what’s inside. Many models have interior and exterior cameras so that you can check what you need while you’re shopping for groceries. Not sure if you need more eggs? Peek inside your fridge remotely to check.
  • Tells you when food expires. Some models allow you to input expiration dates, and then they notify you when your food is about to or has already expired.