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Apple focuses on speed and functionality rather than big features on iOS 12

That doesn’t mean there are no fun new features to play with, though

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We were already expecting Apple to unveil the latest version of their mobile operating system simply called iOS 12 at WWDC 2018. The rumors surrounding its new features were pretty quiet, so we didn’t really know what to look forward to.

As it turned out, Apple didn’t focus on making big changes to iOS, but instead made sure that it’ll work smoothly even on older iPhones and iPads. Although, that doesn’t mean there are no new features to be excited about.

iOS 12 may not have the grand change iOS 7 had years ago, but the new update does include some significant additions and improvements like Screen Time, Memoji, Group FaceTime, and grouped notifications.

Screen Time

This is similar to what Google introduced in Android P. Apple wants their uses to have a healthier balance with gadgets and life, so the Screen Time feature in iOS 12 will make sure you’ll get that. It details how much time you’re spending on your device and apps. It can break down app usage by category and also track which one is constantly bugging you with notifications.

You’ll be able to set limits for each app if they become too addictive. A “time’s up” message will display if your allotted time is over, but you can always ask for more if you still want to continue. Parental controls are also integrated in the app, giving parents great control over how often kids stare at their device’s screen.

Memoji and new Animoji

Memoji is probably the most popular of the announcements today. If Animoji lets us become our favorite emoji, Memoji will let you create a personalized character that you can animate. It’s pretty much like Samsung’s AR Emoji, but improved in a lot of aspects. Memoji let’s you have your own appearance, choose skin color, hairstyle, and accessories.

Animoji is not forgotten with a new roster of characters including a ghost, koala, tiger, and a tyrannosaurus rex (or simply T-Rex). Not only that, Animoji now has the ability to detect your tongue. If you stick it out, Animoji will be able to mimic that.

Group FaceTime

Apple’s built-in video chat app will soon be able to let friends have a video conference with up to 32 people. Like other popular video conferencing apps, group FaceTime sessions will have dynamic video windows that get larger when the user in that window is speaking. You might say it’s a boring update, but hold your horses.

If you don’t feel like showing your face in the call or wanna stir up some fun, you’ll be able to use Animoji and your Memoji character during calls. I can already imagine having a lively video conference even during work meetings.

Grouped notifications

At last! Grouped notifications is a long overdue fix to iOS’ messy notifications. In iOS 12, you’ll now be able to interact with or dismiss multiple notifications from the same app at once — just like how Android has been doing it for years. Aside from this, there are also new tweaks like individual setup of “Quiet” app notifications that will show up on your lock screen or not make a sound at all.

Better AR and a new Measure app

In iOS 12, augmented reality is still a focus feature. A more powerful AR experience is coming our way on Apple’s mobile devices along with a new Measure app. As the name suggests, the app is for measuring objects or distances around you. It’s practically an AR ruler similar to other third-party apps, but now made by Apple.

All about performance

As mentioned earlier, Apple is working to make iOS feel smoother and faster especially on older devices. Based on their test on a four-year-old iPhone 6, these are what they found about iOS 12’s performance: Apps launch 40 percent faster, the system keyboard shows up 50 percent faster, and the camera launches 70 percent faster.

“For iOS 12, we are doubling down on performance.” — Craig Federighi, Senior VP of Software Engineering for Apple

Apple focuses on what’s in the core to make sure the new update will not slow down older devices. This is probably to address the battery issues and intentional slow down fiasco. iOS 12 will be available for download later this year, but you can join the beta program to get ahead of everyone else. All devices running iOS 11 are eligible to get iOS 12 — nice!

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Microsoft could bring Android support to Windows in 2021

Feeling the heat from Apple’s move to ARM

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Microsoft’s Windows 10 operating system is widely used globally and has remained the laptop and PC segment’s undisputed leader. However, Linux, as well as macOS, have gained considerable traction in the last few years. To maintain its edge, Microsoft could bring Android support to Windows soon.

According to a Windows Central report, internal discussions are ongoing over the possibility of bringing Android runtime to Windows 10. Currently, you can install a third-party emulation software like Bluestacks to run Android apps on a Windows device. But the experience is far from perfect and still requires a bit of a learning curve.

Apple has a significant lead in this regard because its move to an ARM-based M1 processor allows it to run iOS apps on macOS seamlessly. This ideally helps in bridging the software gap between two very different devices.

Microsoft has tried to achieve a similar goal with the Universal Windows Platform. But the results are still limited because there are barely any devices with a smaller form factor leveraging the operating system.

More importantly, Microsoft wants to bring Android apps to its Microsoft Store. While there’s no information on how it intends to achieve this, the report does say the release is expected by Fall 2021.

Microsoft no stranger to cross-platform apps

Microsoft has whole-heartedly adopted cross-platform compatibility and has a host of apps on iOS as well as Android. If it’s able to bring Android apps to Windows, it’ll challenge the status quo of Chromebooks, which has long been a pain for the Redmond giant in the affordable segment.

This isn’t the first time a company is trying to incorporate Android within its proprietary operating system. BlackBerry 10 supported Android runtime, and the brand leaned on it to make apps easily available. While the move was too late for BlackBerry, it isn’t the same for Microsoft.

It’s worth noting that the idea is in a very nascent stage right now. We don’t know how Microsoft intends to distribute Android apps or whether it’ll start supporting Google Play Services. Although one thing’s for clear — Microsoft is feeling the heat from Apple.

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India bans 43 more Chinese apps, takes total count to 220

AliExpress and Taobao get the red slip

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The Indian government is dead serious about blocking apps developed by Chinese developers. It has announced a new tranche that now stands banned. The most popular app included in the fourth wave is AliExpress, Alibaba’s international shopping app.

The Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MEITY) issued an order stating these apps were engaging in activities that are prejudicial to India’s sovereignty and integrity, defense of India, the security of the state, and public order.

India has already banned major Chinese apps like TikTok, PUBG Mobile, and even startups like Shein and Lalamove haven’t been spared. The all-out ban against Chinese apps gained momentum when the two countries were involved in a border skirmish in June.

Both sides suffered high casualties, and the move was seen as an aggressive breach of India’s sovereignty, although China too lays a claim on the disputed valley.

Due to the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic, the anti-China narrative was on the rise since the virus outbreak first happened in the Chinese city of Wuhan. With the escalating border crisis, India clamped down on developers that depend on the market and has pretty much removed every China-backed app from the top 500 list.

Similarly, India has also ruled against Chinese hardware, and Huawei is the worst-hit. The country is yet to deploy commercial 5G, and when it does, it won’t be relying on Huawei’s technology. Officials are concerned that China will get a lot of power over Indian users via data collection and snooping.

The country is also actively pursuing data localization compliance to ensure the data of Indian users remains within the country. WhatsApp Pay wasn’t allowed to launch services in the country for almost two years due to these requirements.

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Here’s everything you need to know with ING Pay

Another safe, easy cashless option

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ING Pay

You can now do more with your ING account! A little over a year ago, ING Philippines launched its mobile-only bank. With it you can save up your hard-earned cash. Now, they’re letting you do more with ING Pay.

The ongoing Coronavirus pandemic has forced most of us to stay home. With that comes with the need to shift to mobile and online banking. With ING expanding their services, it’ll help with the transition to going cashless.

Here’s everything you need to know about ING Pay.

ING Pay is the newest product offering of ING Philippines. It makes payment easy, smart, and convenient through different features such as bills payment, virtual VISA debit card, and real-time InstaPay transfers. It also helps customers separate their daily account from their savings.

Is ING Pay an e-wallet?

ING Pay is not e-wallet. It’s a bank account, approved by the BSP which means that the security and processes are aligned with ING internal control framework and the standards of the BSP. As a bank account, customers can use ING Pay for all their payments and transactions, including crediting their salary, and manage their financials using the ING mobile app.

Do customers need to have an ING Save account in order to open an ING Pay account?

No. Customers do not need to have an ING Save account in order to use our ING Pay account. Just download the ING mobile app through iOS App Store or Google Play Store and select “Open an ING Pay Account”. However, we encourage our customers to still open an ING Save account to take advantage of its features, such as the high interest rate.

Will savings in ING Save be used for ING Pay?

Not necessarily. ING Pay account is separate from ING Save. Customers, however, can transfer funds from their ING Save to ING Pay instantly with no charges. 

How can customers deposit funds?

There are 3 ways:

  1. They can use their other bank’s online banking portal or mobile app to transfer funds to ING Pay via PESONet or InstaPay.
  2. They can deposit a check directly to your ING Pay account via the ING mobile app.
  3. If they have an existing ING Save account with balances, they can transfer funds from their ING Save to ING Pay instantly and completely free.

Is there any maintaining or minimum balance needed in opening an ING Pay account?

There is no minimum amount to open and maintain the account.

How can customers contact ING?

They can reach out to us by sending a message in the in-app live chat function and FB Messenger. Our customer care team is available 24/7 and will reply as soon as possible.

Fund Transfers

Can customers transfer money from their ING Pay account to other third-party bank accounts?

Yes. Customers can transfer to their other bank accounts via InstaPay and PESONet, at no fees.

Are there any fees when transferring money from other banks?

Some banks may charge transfer fees.

How much can customers transfer via InstaPay?

Customers can transfer PhP 50,000 per transaction via InstaPay, as compared to a daily limit of PhP 50,000 set by most other banks.

Can customers adjust their transfer limits?

Yes. As an added security feature, customers can adjust their daily transfer limit via the ING mobile app.

How long will it take for deposits from other banks to get credited?

Transfer via InstaPay is credited instantly. For PESONet transfers, it will depend on the time that the transfer is made and the cut-off time of the sending bank.

Freelancer (and K-Drama fan) Ceej Tantengco shared how ING Philippines’ Save and Pay accounts are helpful in her work setup.

Virtual VISA Debit Card

How can customers access the virtual Visa debit card?

They can access and use their virtual Visa debit card via the mobile app so they never have to worry about losing the card details. They can keep track of all the transactions and manage their card usage anytime, anywhere.

Will ING Pay have a physical debit card?

Yes, customers can look out for our announcements and notifications on the availability of the physical debit card.

Can customers use the virtual Visa debit card for foreign transactions?

Yes, you can use your debit cards at local and foreign stores and or merchants that accepts Visa transactions.

Bills Payment

How many merchant partners does ING Pay have?

You can pay your bills to more than 70 merchants in our pre-enrolled list. 

What do customers need in order to pay bills?

To pay bills, customers will need the following:

  • The name of the biller
  • The account, reference or policy number of the bill
  • The exact amount you need to pay

How long is the processing time for transactions?

Generally, processing time can take 1-3 banking days. Payments made on weekends, holidays, or after 6:00pm on weekdays will be processed in the next banking day. Please ensure that all bill payments are made before your due date.

Security

If customers lose their mobile phone, how do they access their account?

We have applied measures to ensure the security of your account. For example we only allow 3 attempts when entering the passcode.

To access their account from a different phone, they will be asked to verify their personal details like what they used previously during account opening. They will also be asked to go through the liveness detection again for verification before accessing their account.

Is the customer’s money safe?

Yes, their money is safe with us. We are supervised by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas. We are also a member of PDIC. The Maximum Deposit Insurance for each depositor is PhP 500,000.

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