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Where are Apple’s iPad Pro Apps for Pros?

Apple just announced that iPad Pro is available for ordering Wednesday. I think it’s going to be a huge success, but I am a little concerned about one thing: Where are Apple’s pro apps?

Now I fully understand that the iPad Pro is, in many ways, “just another iPad” and thus will not likely have any apps that only run on the iPad Pro. And I understand that Apple wants to encourage third party developers to create apps of their own.

But for it to be successful, it certainly needs apps that take advantage of its hallmark features for professionals, such as Pencil and its new keyboard cover (a first for iPads and, I predict, will not be shared with smaller iPads).

But is Apple going to leave the pro apps to third parties like Microsoft and Adobe?

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Should You Port Your iPhone/iPad App to Apple TV?

Your business or enterprise has an iOS app for iPhone and/or iPad, and you’re intrigued by the new app support on Apple TV and tvOS. Should you port your app to tvOS?

It seems like a fairly easy decision. Despite its different name, tvOS is very similar to iOS and has many of the same foundational building blocks. Much like Apple Watch and watchOS, Apple TV and tvOS allow you to build much of your app without changes.

But there are both technical and user experience reasons that feed into the decision on whether to port your app.

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Apple TV and Siri Remote. Image courtesy of Apple.

Was Apple’s $1 Apple TV Dev Kit a Success?

Apple did something very un-Apple-like for the debut of Apple TV. About 6 weeks before the Apple TV debuted, Apple held a lottery and sent some (many?) iOS developers a genuine 4th edition Apple TV for testing. For just a buck. This allowed developers to use a real TV and a real Siri Remote during development.

Apple TV and Siri Remote. Image courtesy of Apple.

Apple TV and Siri Remote. Image courtesy of Apple.

This may not seem like a big deal, since Apple provides simulators for iPhones, iPads, Apple Watches, and Apple TVs. But it was clear with the launch of the Apple Watch that not having a real device with a new user interaction model was a handicap to many developers.

The initial batch of Apple Watch apps were, well, let’s just say uneven. Now there were some technical reasons for that beyond developers’ control but, still, not having a Watch handicapped many an app.

Was the launch of Apple TV any different?

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Yes, Virginia, There is Such a Thing as HTML-formatted Text in tvOS

There’s been a lot of hand-wringing about the lack of web view functionality on the new 4th generation Apple TV. If your company is planning a tvOS app, you may be concerned that there is no way to display HTML on the new Apple TV because it doesn’t have a web browser. Even though many iOS apps don’t display a browser window per se, they do use a “web view” to show static but highly formatted HTML text. It’s just a lot easier than creating “attributed text” by hand or a complex series of labels in your app.

Well, fear not, because this is very possible on tvOS.

Apple TV screenshot of Greann Gaeilge app, showing HTML-formatted text.

Apple TV screenshot of Greann Gaeilge app, showing HTML-formatted text.

I’ll explain how my app Greann Gaeilge did just that.

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