Everything you need to know about macOS High Sierra and iOS 11

Everything you need to know about macOS High Sierra and iOS 11

Apple’s latest updates to macOS and iOS have arrived! From now on when you buy a snazzy new Apple device, it’ll come pre-installed with High Sierra on Mac or iOS 11 on iPad and iPhone, and both OS upgrades are packed full of great new features.

macOS High Sierra

High Sierra provides loads of great enhancements. From added GPU capabilities like machine learning, virtual reality, and external GPU support, to a more expressive Siri, the latest macOS is the best yet.

New features

Apple File System (APFS)

One of High Sierra’s great new features is that it comes with Apple’s new, modern file system, APFS (Apple File System). Optimised for all‑flash internal storage and with an advanced architecture, it brings a new level of security and responsiveness to managing your data.

High Efficiency Video Coding (HEVC)

Up to 40% better compression than before, the new industry-standard for 4K video is now available on your Mac. Your videos will stream better and take up less space on your Mac, but you maintain the same great visual quality.

Metal 2 graphics

Metal 2 is a technology built into macOS that lets you access the full power of your Mac’s GPU. For High Sierra, Metal 2 not only takes the visual experience to the next level, but also adds capabilities like machine learning, virtual reality, and external GPU support for entertainment and professional creative apps.

Photos

High Sierra makes your growing library more organised and accessible, with intuitive editing tools to help you perfect your images. Filter your photo collections by your favourite criteria, find what you’re looking for quickly and easily with the always-on sidebar, and fine tune your photos with powerful tools like Curves for contrast and colour adjustments, and Selective Colour to make colours more saturated.

Intelligent tracking prevention

Safari now uses machine learning to identify advertisers and others who track your online behavior, and removes tracking data they leave behind – so you can browse in peace without seeing that same ad pop up again and again.

Siri

Siri gets a more expressive makeover with a more natural voice, and more changes in expression, intonation and emphasis based on what it’s saying. It can also learn your music preferences to make suggestions, or play you something to suit your mood.

Upgrading to High Sierra

High Sierra’s powerful new features may make you want to dive right in, but before you rush into upgrading your business to the new macOS, there are a few things to consider.

You may already be aware of some of the challenges your business might face in upgrading to a new OS – needing to control who upgrades when, and ensuring as little downtime as possible. With High Sierra, you’ll also need to consider the impact of the APFS on a mixed Mac estate. While you’d still be able to share files between new and old Macs switching to SMB, AFP won’t be able to share files with the new APFS. This could cause issues if you have different team members using different OSes.

You’ll also need to consider imaging, as you may find yourself needing to move DEP (Device Enrolment Program) workflows or purchase mobile device management (MDM) software to push out images across multiple machines. Finally, before you upgrade your entire estate to High Sierra, you’ll need to ensure that your current infrastructure is supported. If you try to use a monolithic system image, required firmware updates will be missing from the installation. This causes the Mac to operate in an unsupported and unstable state.

To help you get your head around this, Apple have published a Preparing for macOS High Sierra document, which you can download here.

We can also support you in your transition to Apple’s new macOS. If you’d like an audit on your existing estate, we can help you work out how best to transition seamlessly with minimal downtime. Plus, we’ll train your IT staff at the same time on how best to utilise all the new features!

iOS 11

iOS 11 promises to make your iPhone and iPad more powerful and personal than ever. With updated features for everything from Siri to Apple Pay, we had a look at why the latest version of iOS is said to be the most intelligent it’s ever been…

New features

Files

The new Files app lets you easily browse, search and organise all your files in one place, with a dedicated place for recent files, as well as those on other iOS devices, in iCloud Drive and across other services like Box and Dropbox.

Dock (for iPad)

The new Dock is now available from any screen, so with just a swipe you can open and switch apps instantly. Plus, you can customise it with more of your favourites. Recently and currently open apps on your iPhone or Mac will appear in the right side of the Dock.

Apple Pay

With iOS 11, the convenience of Apple Pay is brought to Messages, so sending and receiving money between friends is as simple as having a conversation. You can use Apple Pay with your credit or debit card to send money instantly and securely, and request and receive money just as easily within Messages.

Live Photos

Improved Live Photos mean you can be more expressive and creative in your shots. iOS 11 allows you to turn a Live Photo into a video loop, or play them in reverse with Bounce. And with Long Exposure, you can create beautiful effects usually only possible with a DSLR camera.

QuickType keyboard (for iPad)

You’ll no longer need to switch back and forth between keyboards, as letters, numbers, symbols and punctuation marks will now all be on the same keyboard – just flick down on a key to select what you need.

Siri

iOS 11 makes your personal assistant more personal – and even more intelligent. Siri gains a natural, expressive voice, and advanced machine learning means that it will get to know your tastes and preferences. So now if you ask Siri to play you some music, it knows what you’re going to like – no risk of it accidentally playing Jedward when you’re trying to impress someone.

Control Centre

With the redesigned Control Centre, you can customise the settings for the things you do the most. You can add a Voice Memos control, Home controls, and use 3D Touch in Control Centre to unlock even more commands.

Coming very soon… new emoji

Finally all our campaigning has paid off, and iOS 11 will soon usher in the era of the zebra emoji! Well, that’s what we’re calling it at any rate. There’s also a woman in a headscarf, a dinosaur, a zombie, a bearded man and a breastfeeding woman added to the lineup.

Adding devices to Apple School Manager or DEP

With iOS 11, you can now add iOS and tvOS devices to Apple School Manager or DEP using Apple Configurator 2.5, even if the devices weren’t purchased directly from Apple, an Apple-authorised reseller or an authorised cellular carrier. When you set up a device that has been manually enrolled, it will behave like any other enrolled device, with mandatory supervision and mobile device management (MDM) enrolment. Users will have a 30-day provisional period to remove the device from enrolment, supervision and MDM.

iOS 11 is available now.

Want to know more? Get in touch with the team on 03332 409 306 or by emailing solutions@Jigsaw24.com to speak to one of our consultants. You can stay up to date with all the latest from Apple by following us on Twitter @WeAreJigsaw24 or by liking us on Facebook.

Increasing accessibility with iPad in the classroom

Increasing accessibility with iPad in the classroom

iPad has become the technology of choice in UK classrooms, providing tools to support learning but also addressing the diverse range of challenges some learners face – without introducing the stigma that other technologies can often create in the classroom.

Check out our video to find out how iPad provides a toolkit to support learning for all students, regardless of their unique abilities.

 

If you want to know more about iPad in education, give us a call on 03332 409 290 or email education@Jigsaw24.com. For all the latest news, follow @Jigsaw24Edu on Twitter, or ‘Like’ us on Facebook.

 

Our infrastructure and device management services for education

Our infrastructure and device management services for education

We know that a successful deployment is more than just getting devices in hands. Our solutions help both students and teachers get the most out of their devices they use in their work every day.

In this video, we lay out everything we can do to help your school on its way towards a successful technology deployment, in particular establishing a robust wireless infrastructure including network and WiFi surveys, installation services, structured cabling and switches.

If you want to know more about our services for education, give us a call on 03332 409 290 or email education@Jigsaw24.com. For all the latest news, follow @Jigsaw24Edu on Twitter, or ‘Like’ us on Facebook.

Testing digital leaders’ film making skills at Langley Grammar School

Testing digital leaders’ film making skills at Langley Grammar School

Langley Grammar School’s Digital Leaders play a vital role in making sure that the school’s IT and iPad provision supports and engages students, and that there’s always a clear line of communication from the staff making IT policies to the students working under them.

When we heard that the school had just added some new Digital Leaders to the team, we thought it only right that they be put through their paces – it’s a very important role, after all. With that in mind, we set them a challenge: make a video explaining how iPad is benefiting your education, using only that same iPad.

Using their trusty iPads, students had to script, shoot and edit a three minute video showing how the school was encouraging creative, independent learning, and trying to make lessons more fun.

We’re not completely cruel, so we made sure one of our Apple Education Trainers (and former teacher) Mike Watkinson was on hand to answer any questions about apps the students hadn’t used before, but otherwise they were on their own. Over to Mike…

“Myself and Langley’s Specialist Leader for Education, Dan Mace, briefed the digital leaders on the project – this was the first time they had been asked to carry out a task like this with the knowledge that what they were producing would represent the school, so quite intimidating for them I think!

“They had also not worked on a larger scale video project, so we discussed ideas around planning and storyboarding. The students were asked how would they like to represent ways that iPad is used in the school, and what the practicalities of capturing that information would be.

“They then assigned roles to members of the team, including scriptwriters, camera operators, presenters, editors, musicians and so on, and set to work.”

The students were only using a small amount of pre-recorded footage, such as that taken from existing projects, so needed no capture and edit their contributions very quickly, as they only had a day to script, shoot and cut the video.

Mike explained: “The idea was to review each contribution as a group then compile the contributions to make the final film, adding titles and music as appropriate. iMovie was the main tool used for this process, but music was composed by members of the team using GarageBand.

“The students planned the content and structure of the final piece and captured and/or created all the materials, with guidance from Dan and myself only being around how such projects can be organised and delivered, and a little help with timekeeping! Considering they were new to the role and the process I think the results do them and the school great credit!”

If you want to know more about iPad in education, give us a call on 03332 409 290 or email education@Jigsaw24.com. For all the latest news, follow @Jigsaw24Edu on Twitter, or ‘Like’ us on Facebook.

Enriching the student experience with iPad and Langley Grammar School

Enriching the student experience with iPad and Langley Grammar School

Why are iPads so valuable to the student experience? We put our heads together to figure it out, and in the end we decided… we should probably just ask the kids at Langley Grammar school, who are into their fourth year of using iPads in the classroom.

We asked pupils to tell us how iPad has affected their learning, and they replied with this video, shot and edited entirely on their iPads. Students say that iPads enable “fun, independent and creative” learning, which prepares them for the future of technology.

Independent, versatile learning

iPad enables independent learning, opening up the learning process by allowing students to personalise their work based on their own preferred learning style, helping them to stay engaged and grasp concepts better. Students at Langley Grammar say that the “best part about iPad is having the ability to control the way in which we learn”, as they can go through each lesson at their own pace and to make their learning more effective. Students say that they “now have a full system built on independent learning”. They’re even able to test themselves at home, accessing class materials with a link to the school’s server system. And with iPad’s built-in features that make it accessible to students of all ages and abilities, the benefits can be felt by all pupils.

Encouraging creativity in a fun learning environment

As iPad becomes a core part of learning, students are able to be more creative by utilising the wealth of tools available to them. Pupils can take advantage of multiple ways of producing and presenting work to their peers and teachers, which were not available to them before iPads were introduced, giving students more freedom in their learning. Langley Grammar pupils tell us that they’re able to be more creative with iPad, as it opens up “new opportunities that couldn’t be done without iPads”, allowing them to “rethink learning”.

Because iPad allows for more fun learning, students say they are “more engaged and remember more” from their lessons. Creative activities with the iPad (such as shooting and editing videos such as this one) allow them to develop their technology skills in an enjoyable, competitive way. Pupils are eager to work with the iPads, looking forward to lessons that involve the device.

“Rolling out iPad in schools has had a huge impact on student learning and the effectiveness of using technology in the classroom,” says Paul Ford, our head of education. “As a result of creating a more engaging, more collaborative learning environment, we’ve seen schools smash their targets in terms of both grades and student satisfaction.”

If you’re looking to boost creativity and independent learning in your school, we’ve got everything you need to get up and running – from the iPads themselves and their protective cases and charging carts, to mobile device management (MDM) software and training. We also offer extended warranties and repairs, onsite support, helpdesk, training for first line technicians, IT health checks and more, so you’re covered from end to end.

To find out more about iPad in education, drop us an email at education@Jigsaw24.com or call 03332 409 290. For everything else, including the latest news, events and offers, follow us on Twitter @WeAreJigsaw24 or ‘like’ us on Facebook.

 

Decking out your iPad for video

Decking out your iPad for video

As you may have seen, pupils at Langley Grammar School have produced a great Student Voice video about how they use iPad in the classroom (if you missed it, you can check out their impressive results below). The school’s Digital Leaders only had a day to plan, shoot and edit the video, all on their iPads.

While most schools are already au fait with iMovie and GarageBand – and indeed, those are the tools that Langley’s Digital Leaders relied on – there are loads of apps and accessories out there to help you take advantage of iPad’s excellent camera, whether you need a hand planning a shoot, capturing footage or editing it. We asked our team to recommend a few in case anyone was inspired to follow in Langley’s footsteps…

Before the shoot

For planning a shoot, Paper is a popular app for general note-taking, and the ease with which students can draw and share means it’s a quick fix if you want to create storyboards digitally. If you’re looking for more simplistic tools, students could use Keynote to storyboard their project, or even create an album in Photos and order their pictures and existing footage prior to placing them in iMovie.

During the shoot

Apple have also released Clips, a free app for making and sharing videos with text, graphics and effects – essentially, a simplified version of iMovie. It’s ideal for children just starting to learn video production with iPad. You can capture footage within the app and use intuitive tools to edit and post to various platforms, including Facebook, YouTube and Vimeo.

If you need to keep an iPad still for long shots, say to record an interview, or so it can be used as an autocue, then mounting it on a tripod is your best bet. B-Hague’s mounts work with iPad 2, 3 and 4, and can be mounted to a tripod, ball head, clamp, bracket or anything with a standard 1/4″ camera screw or 5/8″ stud. If your students are expanding their editing skills, the Lastolite Chromakey collapsible reversible background can be used in video setups for when a background will be added digitally in the editing stage.

Ideal for younger pupils who haven’t quite grasped that you shouldn’t shoot in portrait mode, or for any pupils who struggle to hold their camera steady, Horizon Camera restricts what your camera shoots to a stable, well-proportioned landscape image. Regardless of how much you move the camera, the resulting footage always looks right when it’s displayed. The free version watermarks your footage, but you can upgrade to the premium version for £1.99 and unlock a whole range of additional features, and footage can be opened in iMovie so that it can be edited along with your other clips.

Also available to further utilise your iPad for production is Teleprompter Lite, a free app that allows you to create and edit unlimited scripts, set the scrolling speed, preview your performance using the iPad camera and set a custom background to what students are most comfortable reading from. Perfect for projects that involve students reading in front of the camera, such as news reading or creating intros.

How can we help?

Our education team are on hand to get you up and running if you’re ready to get your students planning, shooting and editing video. Get in touch to find out how we can help with everything from choosing the right kit to financing in a way that best suits you.

We also offer a great range of training options for your teachers, to ensure they’ll be confident using the various video production tools in the classroom. We can even come in and help you set up a production space, a multi-purpose environment where students can explore their video skills and get the most use out of the tools.

Want to find out more about using iPad for video production in schools? Drop us an email at education@Jigsaw24.com or call 03332 409 290. For everything else, including the latest news, events and offers, follow us on Twitter @WeAreJigsaw24 or ‘like’ us on Facebook.

iOS 11 brings upgraded Apple Pay, Live Photos, Siri and much more…

iOS 11 brings upgraded Apple Pay, Live Photos, Siri and much more…

iOS 11 is here, and Apple promises it’s going to make your iPhone and iPad more powerful and personal. With updated features for everything from Siri to Apple Pay, we had a look at why the new OS is said to be the most intelligent it’s ever been…

New features

Files

The new Files app lets you easily browse, search and organise all your files in one place, with a dedicated place for recent files, as well as those on other iOS devices, in iCloud Drive and across other services like Box and Dropbox.

Dock (for iPad)

The new Dock is now available from any screen, so with just a swipe you can open and switch apps instantly. Plus, you can customise it with more of your favourites. Recently and currently open apps on your iPhone or Mac will appear in the right side of the Dock.

Apple Pay

With iOS 11, the convenience of Apple Pay is brought to Messages, so sending and receiving money between friends is as simple as having a conversation. You can use Apple Pay with your credit or debit card to send money instantly and securely, and request and receive money just as easily within Messages.

Live Photos

Improved Live Photos mean you can be more expressive and creative in your shots. iOS 11 allows you to turn a Live Photo into a video loop, or play them in reverse with Bounce. And with Long Exposure, you can create beautiful effects usually only possible with a DSLR camera.

QuickType keyboard (for iPad)

You’ll no longer need to switch back and forth between keyboards, as letters, numbers, symbols and punctuation marks will now all be on the same keyboard – just flick down on a key to select what you need.

Siri

iOS 11 makes your personal assistant more personal – and even more intelligent. Siri gains a natural, expressive voice, and advanced machine learning means that it will get to know your tastes and preferences. So now if you ask Siri to play you some music, it knows what you’re going to like – no risk of it accidentally playing Jedward when you’re trying to impress someone.

Control Centre

With the redesigned Control Centre, you can customise the settings for the things you do the most. You can add a Voice Memos control, Home controls, and use 3D Touch in Control Centre to unlock even more commands.

Coming soon… new emoji

Finally all our campaigning has paid off, and iOS 11 will soon usher in the era of the zebra emoji! Well, that’s what we’re calling it at any rate. There’s also a woman in a headscarf, a dinosaur, a zombie, a bearded man and a breastfeeding woman added to the line up.

 

Adding devices to Apple School Manager or DEP

With iOS 11, you can now add iOS and tvOS devices to Apple School Manager or DEP using Apple Configurator 2.5, even if the devices weren’t purchased directly from Apple, and Apple-authorised reseller or an authorised cellular carrier. When you set up a device that has been manually enrolled, it will behave like any other enrolled device, with mandatory supervision and mobile device management (MDM) enrollment. Users will have a 30-day provisional period to remove the device from enrollment, supervision and MDM.

iOS 11 is available now.

Want to find out how iOS can impact the way you work? Give us a call on 03332 409 306 or email sales@Jigsaw24.com. For all the latest news, follow @WeAreJigsaw24 on Twitter or Like’ us on Facebook

 

We’re one of just 14 Apple Solution Experts for Education!

We’re one of just 14 Apple Solution Experts for Education!

Jigsaw24 are now one of just 14 Apple Solution Experts for Education (ASE), due to recent changes in their channel approach in education.

According to the CRN website: “Apple has overhauled its channel approach in education, leaving just 14 UK resellers on the books for the competitive vertical. CRN understands that the vendor giant between 24 and 26 Apple Solution Experts – Education (ASE) previously, with Softcat, Insight and Misco all apparently missing out. The 14 remaining ASEs in education are: Academia, MCC, GBM, Trams, Albion, KRCS, Western Computer, Toucan, Jigsaw24, XMA, BT Direct Business, JTRS and for Ireland Wiggle and Compu b.”

Read the full article here.

Want to find out more about the services we provide for education? Call us on 03332 409 290 or email education@Jigsaw24.com.You can also follow us on Twitter @WeAreJigsaw24 and ‘like’ us on Facebook for the latest education news.

Your mini guide to patch management with Jamf Pro

Your mini guide to patch management with Jamf Pro

Patch management is an integral part of application security, so it should be high on your list of priorities when it comes to your Mac estate. IT admins spend hours scouring the web for software updates, but it doesn’t have to be as complex and time consuming as you might think.

Formerly a repetitive manual process, quality device management solutions like Jamf Pro have made it easy for users to ensure their software is up to date and secure. How does it do this? Well, Jamf Pro automatically notifies administrators when third party software updates are released, bypassing the rigmarole of figuring out what needs upgrading and which updates are available. This is especially handy given that so many popular third party applications churn out multiple updates a month.

Figuring out where to take action when new updates are available can also be tricky, as most organisations with thousands of machines and users are likely running different software versions. Identifying potential software vulnerabilities is a must, but thankfully Jamf Pro provides visibility into the software or app version a device is running, as well as the number of devices operating on a specific patch. All the information is compiled in an easy to understand visual, and reports can be downloaded or bookmarked so you can share your findings with colleagues. From there, you can take action as and when you need to, ensuring the security of your Mac environment.

Jamf Pro's Patch Management interface

Jamf Pro’s Patch Management interface

If you’re looking to take patch management one step further, Jamf Pro allows IT admins to automate update deployment by utilising policies and scripts. We’d recommend using a mixture of packaged scripts to guarantee a successful rollout with minimal downtime and interference.

If you’d like to find out more, you can download our Mac Management whitepaper here. Alternatively, give us a call on 03332 409 365 or email solutions@Jigsaw24.com. For all the latest news and reviews, follow us on Twitter @WeAreJigsaw24 and ‘like’ us on Facebook.

 

How to sort your Apple support strategy

How to sort your Apple support strategy

Last month, we looked at how to build an agile, multi-speed IT strategy based on Apple. And while implementing Apple devices into your business is great, introducing new tech and a mixed platform environment to IT teams who may traditionally only be familiar with PCs often calls for a little extra tech support. Luckily, we can provide comprehensive Apple support strategy for business, as we did with Hachette UK. 

The publishing group originally wanted to consolidate their existing Mac support contracts into one single support agreement that covered both day to day support and project-based work, including helping them transfer five offices to a new, central premises. “As a shared IT function, we’re always looking to improve support for all our end users, so in line with our consolidation into a single office, we decided to consolidate our Mac support as well,” explained Hachette UK’s Director of IT Support, Andy Cobb.

Onsite support at Hachette UK

We now provide a comprehensive support and repair service for Hachette UK, including onsite engineers to handle the Apple side of their service desk, phone and email support in case of escalations, installation and configuration of new machines, deployment to desk and more. This results in more comprehensive, better value support for Hachette’s Mac users, from onsite engineers embedded in the Hachette team. Our team of engineers are all familiar with the Hachette environment, providing a single point of contact for Hachette’s team, with additional resource available at peak times, and are available for staff cover and at times of high workload. Hachette now receive better second and third line support for Hachette’s team, with a managed repairs service for faulty units as well as strategic advice for key projects.

“The key thing for us was the depth of knowledge that Jigsaw24 showed,” said Andy. “We were impressed by the calibre of people who were involved in the [tender] process and their responses, and they already looked after customers who were in a similar position to us. The final thing that was particularly convincing was that the onsite personnel would be part of our team but also enjoy being part of the Jigsaw24 team, and the advantages that gave them in terms of technical expertise to support our users.”

Find out more about how we helped Hachette UK with their Apple support in the video below…

Comprehensive support at News UK

In addition to Hachette UK, we’ve provided Apple support for a large number of businesses over the years. At News UK, we supported over 1000 Macs and 500 iPad devices, as well as helping develop proof of concept schemes for initiatives such as desktop virtualisation and mobile device management. We provided 24-hour onsite and remote support, responding to any Mac query in under ten minutes. News UK received responsive, reliable support for all their technical queries, and were able to continue refining their workflow and incorporating new technologies without overtaxing their technical resources.

Book an Apple Support Strategy Workshop

If you’re currently reviewing and updating your IT strategy, and it includes Apple, talk to us about an Apple Support Strategy Workshop. You can book a meeting with our Chief Technology Officer to focus on your Apple strategy and how to support it, resulting in a bespoke proposal on areas to support your organisation’s growth and goals.

Our Apple Support Strategy Workshops include a discussion of your Apple experience to date, and best practice in Apple deployment and management. We’ll look at:

– Your current Apple estate.

– Your current in-house support employees and their capabilities.

– Your existing management tools.

– Your existing SLA/escalation processes.

– Any gaps in your support (ie not all devices in a management tool for remote access, or too many new starter config builds).

– Your intentions over the next period of Apple growth within the business; core business initiatives of that growth period (whether large-scale refreshes etc); and much more.

Want to find out more about our Apple support services, and booking an Apple Support Strategy Workshop? Give us a call on 03332 409 365 or email solutions@Jigsaw24.com. For all the latest news and reviews, follow us on Twitter @WeAreJigsaw24 and ‘like’ us on Facebook.