For those champing at the bit to try Apple’s forthcoming operating systems, Apple has now released betas of macOS 12 Monterey, iOS 15, iPadOS 15, watchOS 8, and tvOS 15. Apple has also been waging a public relations battle to defend its App Store policies against pressure from the US Congress and Federal Trade Commission—Glenn Fleishman examines Apple’s claims in a recently released white paper. Considering switching your iPhone to T-Mobile? The company has made a tryout easier with its Network Test Drive program, which leverages the eSIM capabilities of recent iPhones to let you use its 5G network side-by-side with your current carrier. Finally, if you find working in Google Docs awkward because of how its tabs get lost in your Web browser, Adam Engst is here to help with a comparison of numerous site-specific browsers for the Mac. Notable Mac app releases this week include Fantastical 3.4.1, Pixelmator Pro 2.1, VLC Media Player 3.0.16, and Carbon Copy Cloner 6.0.2.
Apple has opened public betas of its next-generation operating systems, but remember that these aren’t for everyday use. Only install on devices that you can dedicate to testing!
T-Mobile is offering free “test drives” of its 5G cellular-data service by leveraging the eSIM built into recent-model iPhones. After a quick app install, you get 30 days or 30 GB of data (whichever comes first) to try out T-Mobile. The beauty of the eSIM approach is that it doesn’t mess with your existing service.
Apple says that the dangers of allowing customers to load arbitrary apps are too severe and that the iOS App Store is a bulwark against ransomware, device hijacking, the invasion of children’s privacy, and other problems common on Android.
If you’re a Mac user who wants to turn Google Docs into a standalone app using a site-specific browser, you have at least seven choices. However, as Adam Engst discovered, there’s a great deal of variability in the site-specific browser world, and a number of the options work poorly with Google Docs in particular.
Updates method of searching for contacts on Google Contacts. ($39.99 annual subscription, free update, 42.3 MB, macOS 10.13.2+)
Adds a new ML Crop tool and Quick Fill feature. ($39.99 new, free update, 364 MB, macOS 10.14.4+)
Adds Touch Bar support to the open-source media player. (Free, 49.9 MB, macOS 10.7.5+)
Maintenance release with bug fixes and improvements following recent major upgrade. ($39.99 new, free update, 19.7 MB, macOS 10.15+)