Review: Pad and Quill’s Contega Linen case for iPad Air 2 is handmade perfection (Video)

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It’s always refreshing to see iOS accessory makers doing something different and Pad & Quill leads the pack in this area. With handmade cases crafted from linen, leather, and wood, it’s hard to go wrong with this simplistically elegant spin on cases.

Lately I’ve been using Pad & Quill’s Contega Linen case for iPad Air 2 and it’s changed my mind about “premium” cases. There’s something beautifully different about the craftsmanship and it’s created from materials that are designed to last, but not without a steep entry price for some…

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Apple officially announces iAd expansion into programmatic channels including AdRoll, now available in 102 countries

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Earlier this week news leaked that Apple would begin offering automated purchasing of mobile ads by advertising agencies through its iAd program when one partner ad company accidentally published a press release early, and today Apple has officially shared the full announcement regarding iAd’s “move into programmatic channels.” In addition to Rubicon Project, Apple shared that it is partnering with various “demand-side platforms (DSPs) and ad tech companies” which include Accordant Media, Adelphic, AdRoll, GET IT Mobile, MediaMath, and The Trade Desk.

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AirParrot 2 brings Mac & Windows screen mirroring to Chromecast, drag and drop media streaming

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AirParrot, the app that lets you send your desktop display to an Apple TV-connected TV, is today releasing version 2 with Chromecast support and number of other new features. Sure, you can mirror your Mac’s display to an Apple TV using Apple’s built-in AirPlay feature, but AirParrot provides features beyond what Apple offers and also support for screen mirroring from Chromebooks and Windows. Today’s release makes it the first to enable full screen mirroring support to Chromecast with audio support and more. 

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iWork for iCloud updated with eight new languages, easier document renaming and more

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Apple has updated its iWork for iCloud web-based productivity suite with eight new languages, the ability to rename documents in the editor and a few minor additional enhancements.

Pages gets all eight new languages: Arabic, Brazilian Portuguese, French, German, Hebrew, Japanese, Simplified Chinese, and Spanish – including bidirectional support for Arabic and Hebrew. Numbers and Keynote get all but Arabic and Hebrew …  Read more

iPhone app predicts whether you’ll like the beer or wine you’re looking at in the store [Video]

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Sure, there are shopping apps out there that will read the barcode of a product and let you know whether you could buy it more cheaply online, but someone has now tackled a far more more important issue: will you actually enjoy that bottle of beer or wine you’re eyeing up in the store?

Next Glass is a free iPhone app that uses your own personal taste preferences to predict how likely you are to enjoy a beer or wine you’ve never tried before. If you’re buying for a dinner party or other social occasion, you can link to friends using the same app and it’ll show you how much they’ll like it too …  Read more

Xiaomi thinks it can top Apple and Samsung as world’s largest smartphone maker within a decade

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Just weeks after Xiaomi overtook Huawei and LG to become the world’s third-largest smartphone maker, The Guardian reports that the Chinese handset maker’s chief executive and founder Lei Jun is out with a bold prediction that his company could move past Apple and Samsung to become the world’s largest smartphone maker within the next five to ten years. Read more

Apple pushes Flash Player update to address security issues

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Apple has issued a new update for Adobe’s Flash Player browser plugin. The update fixes “a recently-identified Adobe Flash Player web plug-in vulnerability,” according to Apple’s website. Users will be automatically prompted to install the update when visiting a page that uses Flash Player.

The prompt in Safari will take users to the Flash Player download page on Adobe’s website. Users who haven’t yet seen the prompt can also go there to download the update now.

Apple seeds first beta of OS X Yosemite 10.10.2 with build number 14C68k

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Apple has pushed the first beta build of OS X Yosemite 10.10.2 out to AppleSeed users and developers. The update has a build number of 14C68k and weighs in at 422 MB. Last week the company released version 10.10.1 to the general public.

Apple hasn’t provided any indications of what’s new in this beta and has not listed any particular focus areas, though it’s possible this could be a hotfix update to address any lingering Wi-Fi glitches that didn’t get fixed in the most recent patch.

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Google reaches agreement to settle patent litigation with Apple-backed consortium Rockstar

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Google, according to a report out of Reuters, has agreed to settle all of its patent litigation with the Rockstar consortium, which consists of a variety of tech companies including Apple, Sony, BlackBerry and Microsoft. The Rockstar consortium paid $4.5 billion for Nortel Network Corporation’s huge patent portfolio in 2011, outbidding Google at the time. The Rockstar consortium originally sued Google and a handful of Android manufacturers in October of 2013, claiming that the companies infringed on seven Nortel patents.

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iFixit: How to fix your iPhone 6 or 6 Plus in 21 easy guides

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iFixit gave Apple’s iPhone 6 a repairability score of 7, the highest ever for Apple’s flagship and most popular device in their September teardown.  That bodes well for folks who want to take their iPhone repairs into their own hands, though perhaps it’s best to give the Geniuses at Apple a chance to gift you an out of warranty repair before getting your hands dirty.

In any case, today iFixit announced an updated library of 21 repair guides for the iPhone 6 (and 14 for the 6 Plus). The new guides cover everything from replacing the battery to speakers to the glass panel and everything in between. The tutorials walk you through the process and also conveniently provide links to purchase any necessary tools you might not have (hit up their Amazon store for some hefty discounts).

As with any iPhone take-apart, be very careful and be prepared to forfeit your warranty if you screw up.
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Evernote for OS X updated w/ Yosemite design, performance improvements, more

Evernote this afternoon has released a major update to its OS X desktop app, making both major design enhancements for Yosemite and under-the-hood performance improvements. The update, which the company says is a total rewrite of the app, adds an entirely redesigned interface with a new, lighter color scheme, as well as new icons.

At Evernote, we believe that speed and stability are essential for productivity. That’s why we’ve completely rewritten Evernote for Mac. Everenote is significantly faster, more reliable and consumes less energy than ever before. We’ve also added a number of new features!

In addition to the design improvements, Evernote also touts a variety of new features.

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Twitter for iPhone rolling out Tweet sharing via Direct Messages

Last week, Twitter announced a list of improvements coming to the service including enhancements to Direct Messages and video capabilities slated for next year, and today the social network started rolling out its new features as promised. With the latest version of Twitter for iPhone, you can now share public Tweets privately over Direct Messages with native embedding. You can see the new feature in action below… Read more