iTunes lets you view film ren­tals across de­vices

The tech­nol­ogy could be used by Ap­ple to of­fer quick ac­cess for dis­abled peo­ple, re­veals John Ribeiro

Macworld - - CONTENTS -

Ap­ple has ac­quired the Work­flow au­to­ma­tion app, which al­lows iOS users to trig­ger a se­quence of tasks across apps with a sin­gle tap. A spokesman for Ap­ple con­firmed the com­pany’s ac­qui­si­tion of DeskCon­nect, the de­vel­oper of the app, and the Work­flow app, but did not pro­vide fur­ther de­tails.

Work­flow, de­vel­oped for the iPhone, iPad and Ap­ple Watch, al­lows users to drag and drop com­bi­na­tions of ac­tions to cre­ate work­flows that in­ter­act with the apps and con­tent on the de­vice. It won an Ap­ple de­sign award in 2015 at its an­nual World­wide De­vel­op­ers Con­fer­ence.

Some of the ex­am­ples of tasks for which Work­flow can be used are mak­ing an­i­mated GIFs, adding a home screen icon to call a loved one and tweet­ing a song the user has been lis­ten­ing to, ac­cord­ing to a de­scrip­tion of the app.

Ap­ple is keep­ing the app alive on its App Store and it has been made free, ac­cord­ing to TechCrunch, which first re­ported the ac­qui­si­tion. The com­pany, which typ­i­cally com­ments on its ac­qui­si­tions with the stan­dard line that “Ap­ple buys smaller tech­nol­ogy com­pa­nies from time to time, and we gen­er­ally do not dis­cuss our pur­pose or plans,” re­cently went on to com­ment about the ben­e­fits of the app.

The app was se­lected for the Ap­ple de­sign award “be­cause of its out­stand­ing use of iOS ac­ces­si­bil­ity fea­tures, in par­tic­u­lar an out­stand­ing im­ple­men­ta­tion for VoiceOver with clearly la­belled items, thought­ful hints, and drag/drop an­nounce­ments, mak­ing the app us­able and quickly ac­ces­si­ble to those who are blind or low-vi­sion,” Ap­ple told TechCrunch.

It isn’t clear at this point how the app will be in­te­grated with Ap­ple’s of­fer­ings. Be­sides of­fer­ing a stan­dalone Work­flow app, Ap­ple may pos­si­bly look at in­te­grat­ing the tech­nol­ogy into iOS with Siri be­ing the key in­ter­face for many users, par­tic­u­larly for dis­abled peo­ple.

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