Spotlight


'Spotlight' Articles

Apple Drops Bing Search Engine Results for Siri and Spotlight in Favor of Google

Starting today, Apple search results from Siri and Spotlight on Mac and iOS will be provided by Google rather than Microsoft's Bing. Apple announced the news in a statement that was given to TechCrunch this morning, claiming consistency across iOS and Mac devices is the reason behind the switch. "Switching to Google as the web search provider for Siri, Search within iOS and Spotlight on Mac will allow these services to have a consistent web search experience with the default in Safari," reads an Apple statement sent this morning. "We have strong relationships with Google and Microsoft and remain committed to delivering the best user experience possible."Prior to this morning, all results from a search conducted on Spotlight using Finder on Mac or the swipe down search bar on iOS were Bing search results, as was all search information provided by Siri. Now, when you search using Spotlight or when you ask Siri a question that ends up involving a web search, info will come from Google. According to TechCrunch, the swap will include both web links and video results from YouTube, but web image results in Siri and Spotlight searches will continue to be provided by Bing for the time being. Google searches will use the standard search API and will provide the same search results you'd get from a Google.com search. While Apple has used Bing for search results for things like Siri and Spotlight, Google has remained the default search engine on iOS and Mac devices. Earlier this year, reports suggested Google paid Apple nearly $3 billion to maintain its position as the

iOS 9 Now Supports Spotlight Suggestions in 7 More Countries

Apple this month has expanded Spotlight Suggestions to seven additional regions for compatible iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch models running iOS 9 or later. The localized feature is now supported in Hong Kong, India, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, and the United Arab Emirates. Spotlight Suggestions, such as popular contacts, frequently opened apps, nearby amenities, and local news headlines, can be found by swiping right on the home screen. Other supported regions include the U.S., U.K., Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Spain, Sweden, and

Apple Maps Gains New Flyover Locations, Spotlight Suggestions Expand to Denmark, Norway and Sweden

Apple today updated its iOS 9 feature availability page to note the expansion of several iOS features to new countries. Apple's Flyover feature for Apple Maps has expanded to encompass Akron, Ohio and Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, allowing Maps users to see photorealistic 3D views of the areas, with tools for zooming, panning, and rotating to get a closer look at notable landmarks and points of interest. In Thailand, Apple Maps users now have access to traffic information, bringing the total number of countries with traffic data available to 34. Finally, Spotlight Suggestions have expanded to Denmark, Norway, and Sweden, making the feature available in 19 countries. Spotlight Suggestions show suggestions from the Internet, iTunes, the App Store, Maps, and more when conducting a spotlight search on an iPhone or

BBC iPlayer for iOS Adds Handoff Support and Spotlight Search

BBC's iPlayer app has been updated for iOS users in the UK today, bringing added support for Spotlight search and Apple's Handoff feature. Users of the app can now directly search for TV programs from their home screen by activating Spotlight search with a swipe down gesture, while the addition of Handoff support enables viewers to pick up where they left off when switching to another iOS device. The update also patches a bug that led to the app crashing on launch for some users, and adds a full catalog of iPlayer programs to the channel page via the A-Z option. The UK broadcaster recently brought its iPlayer app to Apple TV after initially stating it had no plans to make the service available on the platform. BBC iPlayer is a free download for users in the UK. [Direct Link]

Twitter CEO Mentions Spotlight Integration on Mac and iOS, Sparks Speculation of More to Come

Apple may be looking to further beef up its search platform "Spotlight" for iOS and OS X with deeper integration of Tweets and Twitter accounts, according to Twitter CEO Dick Costolo (via Macworld). Spotlight already provides some Twitter search options, letting users place an "@" symbol ahead of a name to search for an account or a "#" to search for popular hashtags on the service. Users can also include "twitter" in their Spotlight search terms to pull up relevant accounts. Spotlight is Apple's baked-in search platform, which allows users to quickly look up documents, photos, and other files stored on their computers. Recent updates to the platform have introduced web-based results as well, including information pulled from Wikipedia, search results from Bing, iTunes content, and basic dictionary functionality. Costolo hinted at the possibility of even more in-depth Twitter integration with Spotlight during the company's quarterly earnings call on Tuesday, noting Twitter is "working with Apple to surface great Twitter content and accounts" in Spotlight. As Macworld points out, the Twitter CEO didn't provide any further information beyond suggesting the integration will help "make it easier and quicker to find great things on Twitter." While perhaps referring only to the existing integration and far from a confirmation on new functionality coming to Spotlight's Twitter features, it appears the two companies have at least been discussing where the partnership may be heading in the future. Twitter and Apple have been known to work together closely in the past,

OS X Spotlight Glitch Exposes IP Addresses and Other System Details to Spammers

A privacy glitch in Spotlight search for OS X may leak private details, including IP addresses, to email spammers. The flaw was first reported by German tech news site Heise and replicated in tests performed by IDG News Service. The issue affects OS X mail users who have followed conventional security recommendations to turn off the "load remote content in messages" option in the Mail app. This setting prevents the loading of remote content such as images, including "tracking pixels" that are used by spammers to harvest information when people open an email. A glitch arises when OS X Mail users utilize Spotlight search in OS X, which includes emails in the search results. Spotlight ignores the remote content block preference from Mail and loads the remote email files as part of the search process. Once Spotlight loads one of these tracking pixels, spammers can glean details such as the IP address, OS X version, browser details, and the version of Quick Look being used.The Spotlight preview loads those files even when users have switched off the "load remote content in messages" option in the Mail app, a feature often disabled to prevent email senders from knowing if an email has arrived and if it has been opened. What's more, Spotlight also loads those files when it shows previews of unopened emails that landed directly in the junk folder.Currently, the only way to block this information leak is to block Spotlight from including emails in search results entirely by opening System Preferences and unchecking the "Mail & Messages" option for Spotlight. Apple has yet