Apple wants to make sure your posture’s right when using the Vision Pro

The first preorders for the Apple Vision Pro will very soon be making their way into the hands of users, but it seems that Apple is making plans to have headsets like the Vision Pro respond to the posture of the person wearing them.

A newly published patent (via Patently Apple) refers to “tiered posture awareness” – a method through which headsets and smart specs could figure out the posture of users, and then make any necessary tweaks to the way content was presented.

So, for example, a virtual 3D environment might be slightly adjusted based on the way the user is standing or sitting, and the surround sound effects applied to audio feeds could also be changed to be as immersive as possible.

The patent also mentions making calculations based on how much strain the headset might be putting on the person wearing it – this information could be used to warn users if their posture is putting too much strain on their body parts.

Future updates

The Apple Vision Pro headset on a grey background

Preorders for the Apple Vision Pro are open now (Image credit: Apple)

It's quite a complex patent, and the usual caveats about patents apply here too: there's no guarantee that these ideas will ever actually be implemented in a product, but they offer an interesting insight into what Apple's engineers are thinking about.

In the hands-on time we've had with the Apple Vision Pro, we haven't noticed any kind of head or neck strain, though these sessions have been rather brief. We'll be running a full test of the spatial computing device just as soon as we're able to.

Something like what's being described in the patent could potentially be delivered to the Vision Pro via a future software update. Alternatively, it might be held back for future versions of the headset, which we've already started hearing rumors about.

Apple will also be hoping that more app developers put out dedicated versions of their apps for the Vision Pro in the future: the likes of Netflix are currently holding back because it's going to take a while for the Vision Pro to make it to the mainstream.

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Apple shuts My Photo Stream on July 26, so make sure you don’t lose your photos

Apple has announced that it's shutting down its older My Photo Stream service on July 26, and encouraging everyone to move over to iCloud Photos. If you still use My Photo Stream, your files will remain available in the cloud for 30 days from July 26.

My Photo Stream was the forerunner to iCloud Photos. It was free to use but only covered a maximum of 1,000 pictures and video clips, keeping these files in sync across every Apple device you owned and on the web.

Apple hasn't given a reason for shutting down the service, but iCloud Photos is clearly the newer and more comprehensive option for photo and video backups – while also making some money for Apple in terms of storage fees at the same time.

“Moving forward”

“Moving forward, iCloud Photos is the best way to keep the photos and videos you take up to date across all your devices and safely stored in iCloud,” Apple said in an email sent out to anyone who is still making use of My Photo Stream.

While photos and videos won't be deleted from your actual devices, they will be removed from the cloud 30 days from July 26 (so August 25), and syncing will be switched off. No new uploads will be permitted from July 26.

The service launched alongside iCloud in 2011 and is something of a throwback to the time when tech companies were still figuring out how to get photo and video uploads to work in a speedy and seamless way.

Analysis: what you need to do

What Apple is doing here is phasing out the cloud storage and syncing service for your last 1,000 photos and videos. The original files – which in most cases will be on an iPhone, if they were captured with the iPhone camera – won't go anywhere.

Unless you want to risk losing all your precious memories if something happens to your phone, you really need to get your pictures and videos uploaded to the cloud for safekeeping. Apple is pushing its own iCloud Photos service, which works well: once you go past 5GB of files though, you'll need to start paying for storage.

Other similar services that offer paid-for cloud storage include Google Photos and Dropbox. If you don't want to pay or store anything in the cloud, you need to make sure your photos and videos are regularly backed up to a computer or storage drive or two, preferably in a different location to where your iPhone normally lives.

There's more information in the official Apple support document about how the My Photo Stream shutdown is going to work, what you need to do with your photos and videos, and how to get them into iCloud Photos if you want to.

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Microsoft 365 update will make sure no one is at a disadvantage

At a time when business are using web accessibility software to make their websites accessible to all, Microsoft has released a new add-on that does the same thing for its office software.

As over 1bn people are currently living with a disability, the software giant's Office Engineering team has created a new accessibility add-on for Microsoft Office called Accessibility Reminder.

According to a new blog post, Accessibility Reminder helps drive awareness of the importance of making your organization's Office documents accessible with tips and tricks to fix accessibility issues. With the app's comment feature, disabled users can also remind their fellow collaborators that something in a document needs to be changed so that they can see or hear it.

The Accessibility Reminder app is currently available in Microsoft Excel, Word and PowerPoint for both desktop and the web.

Accessibility Reminder app

Microsoft's new Accessibility Reminder app allows users to insert reminder comments in Word documents, Excel spreadsheets and PowerPoint slides to spread awareness of any issues they have when trying to collaborate with others.

In addition to more general comments, users can also create custom comments to notify specific document authors and include personalized messages, organization-specific links, training and more.

To install Microsoft's Accessibility Reminder app, you first need to navigate to this website, sign in with your Microsoft 365 email address and fill out a short form. From here, you'll be taken to the Microsoft Garage project download site where you can specify which applications you want to install and use the app in.

While Microsoft released its Adaptive Controller back in 2018 to help disabled gamers play games on Xbox and PC, its new Accessibility Reminder app will likely be a big help for them when working from home and collaborating with their co-workers in documents, spreadsheets and presentations.

We've also highlighted the best web accessibility software and best text-to-speech software

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