Today

AAPL: 93.74

-1.09
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An iPhone 6 is at the center of an investigation of two missing Florida teens. Last July, 14-year-olds Austin Stephanos and Perry Cohen set out on a boat trip in the Atlantic Ocean, but both of the bodies went missing and boys never returned. The United States Coast Guard performed an eight-day search for the boys, but never found them. Last, month, however, their boat was recovered 100 miles off the shore of Bermuda and on the boat was Stephanos’ iPhone (via ABC News).

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There was lots of news for Apple this week with the company’s Q2 2016 earnings representing some notable declines across the board despite reporting $50.6 billion in revenue and $10.5 billion in profit. But readers were more interested in the latest rumors and expectations for the upcoming iPhone 7 and Apple Watch 2, as well as some new “exclusive” Apple Music and iTunes releases and this week’s new apps and updates.

Head below for all the handy links to this week’s top stories and more.

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April 29

AAPL: 93.74

-1.09
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9to5toys 

Prior to the official announcement of the Apple Watch, there were multiple rumors that the device would be packed with health-related sensors. When it finally launched, however, it got just a heart-rate monitor – albeit a sophisticated one. A teardown revealed that there’s also a pulse oximeter in there, to measure oxygen saturation in your blood, but Apple hasn’t yet activated that functionality.

The apparent turnabout on sensors was explained by Tim Cook, who last year told the Telegraph that Apple wanted to avoid the need for FDA approval as a regulated health product as that would slow innovation. Any additional sensors, he strongly hinted, would be external.

If you don’t want to wait that long, however, health-tech company Azoi has launched the Kito+, a credit-card sized unit that pairs with an iPhone app to measure heart-rate, ECG, blood oxygen, respiration rate and skin temperature. Costing £99 ($145), you can either use it as a standalone unit, or slot it into the supplied iPhone case for the iPhone 6/6s/Plus …

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April 28

AAPL: 94.83

-2.99
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In a new report, Reuters this evening is claiming that the FBI paid less than $1 million for the tool it used to unlock the San Bernardino gunman’s iPhone 5c. Apple, of course, denied to create a tool to do so, so the FBI went through a third-party to gain access. The report, citing “several U.S. government sources,” further claims that the technique can be used on any iPhone 5c running iOS 9.

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April 27

AAPL: 97.82

-6.53
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This week Zac and Benjamin get into new iPhone 7 rumors, news about Apple Watch 2, as well as Apple’s somewhat disappointing $50b quarter. The Happy Hour podcast is available for download on iTunes and through our dedicated RSS feed.

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9to5google 

Earlier today, yet another report emerged claiming that Apple would launch an iPhone ‘Pro’ or iPhone 7 ‘Pro’ this fall. This report claimed that the device would be identical to the iPhone 6s Plus in terms of size, but would feature dual cameras on the back and Smart Connector support.

This isn’t the first time we’ve heard reports of Apple perhaps adding an additional model to its iPhone lineup, either. A separate report from last month claimed that the company was planning an iPhone 7 Pro with dual camera capabilities.

While all of this is obviously yet to be confirmed and could very well change before Apple announces new iPhones this September, it brings up some interesting possibilities for the iPhone’s 2016 lineup. Will Apple replace the ‘Plus’ model with the ‘Pro’ model? Will it join the lineup as an additional, more expensive option? Let’s discuss…

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SanDisk’s new iXpand Lightning to USB drive introduces a new design, faster USB 3.0, and a brand new app, making it one of the most attractive offerings as far as thumb drives for your iPhone or iPad go. I’ve been testing it out to see if it’s worth a recommendation over the many competitors.

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Rumors that Apple will ditch the headphone jack with this fall’s iPhone update have been around for a while now, but Japanese magazine Mac Fan today has shared detailed design schematics of the purported iPhone 7 ‘Pro.’ According to the magazine, the device will feature the same overall size as the iPhone 6s Plus, but is expected to ditch the headphone jack and feature dual iSight cameras on the back (via Macotakara.)

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electrek 

Apple is widely rumored to be dropping the 3.5 mm headphone jack from the iPhone 7, instead favouring wireless Bluetooth or the Lightning port for connecting headphones. Intel is also keen to eliminate the 100 year old 3.5 mm jack, citing ‘industry singling a strong desire to move from analog to digital’ (via AnandTech).

However, Intel is pushing USB-C as the future of headphone audio cables. Intel believes USB-C will win out over 3.5mm as it has many modern-day benefits including the potential to add additional smart features to headphones in the future, that can pass data down the same USB-C cable.

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Having already released its first iPhone game Miitomo, a bespoke social networking game, Nintendo is now teasing the next round of games headed to the iPhone and iOS devices. Notably, unlike Miitomo, these are going to be versions of existing successful Nintendo franchises: Animal Crossing and Fire Emblem.

Although Animal Crossing is not quite on the same podium as Super Mario, it is still major first-party intellectual property for Nintendo to release on non-Nintendo consoles for the first time. The new smartphone and tablet titles are expected to be released later this year, around October.

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April 26

AAPL: 104.35

-0.73
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Apple has officially posted its Q2 2016 earnings results with $50.6 billion in revenue and $10.5 billion in profit from the January to March quarter. Apple’s guidance last quarter first pointed to a year-over-year decline in iPhone sales for the quarter following the holiday season citing global economic issues and inflated iPhone 6 demand due to supply constraints the year earlier. Apple’s updated 4-inch iPhone SE and 9.7-inch iPad Pro launched at the end of March.

Apple® today announced financial results for its fiscal 2016 second quarter ended March 26, 2016. The Company posted quarterly revenue of $50.6 billion and quarterly net income of $10.5 billion, or $1.90 per diluted share. These results compare to revenue of $58 billion and net income of $13.6 billion, or $2.33 per diluted share, in the year-ago quarter. Gross margin was 39.4 percent compared to 40.8 percent in the year-ago quarter. International sales accounted for 67 percent of the quarter’s revenue.

Here’s Apple’s breakdown of iPhone, iPad, and Mac sales from the quarter:

  • iPhone: 51.1 million units
  • iPad: 10.2 million units
  • Mac: 4 million units

For iPhone sales, that’s an 18% year-over-year drop and a 19% drop for iPads.

Apple CEO Tim Cook had this to say:

“Our team executed extremely well in the face of strong macroeconomic headwinds,” said Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO. “We are very happy with the continued strong growth in revenue from Services, thanks to the incredible strength of the Apple ecosystem and our growing base of over one billion active devices.”

And Luca Maestri, chief financial officer, said this:

“We generated strong operating cash flow of $11.6 billion and returned $10 billion to shareholders through our capital return program during the March quarter,” said Luca Maestri, Apple’s CFO. “Thanks to the strength of our business results, we are happy to be announcing today a further increase of the program to $250 billion.”

Apple’s Q2 results compare to the prior quarter’s $75.9 billion in revenue, 74.8 million iPhone sales, 16.1 million iPad sales, and 5.3 million Mac sales. In the same quarter a year ago, Apple reported $58 billion in revenue, 61.1 million iPhones sold, 12.6 million iPads sold, and 4.5 million Macs sold. Apple reported $18.4 billion in profit in the prior quarter and $13.6 billion in profit in the year ago quarter.

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A little under a week after releasing its second beta, Apple has released the third developer beta of iOS 9.3.2 for iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. iOS 9.3.2 appears to be a smaller update compared to the past significant iOS 9.3 update that brought about features such as Night Shift and Touch ID notes.

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9to5toys 
9to5google 

Later today, at about 4.30 PM ET, Apple will announce its financial earnings results for fiscal Q2, including the latest three-month sales numbers for iPhone, iPad and Mac.

Although Apple is still going to post profits in the billions, still one of the most successful companies the world by all metrics, investor expectations are low as the company guidance indicates it will report its first decline in year-over-year quarterly revenue since 2003. The primary cause? Falling iPhone sales …

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A new motion signed into law in India will require all phones, including iPhones, to feature a ‘panic button’ to call emergency services and GPS for location pings from January 1st, 2017. The provisions are being brought in to aid the ‘security of women’, via the Indian Express.

Obviously, GPS has existed in iPhones since the iPhone 3G but it seems that Apple will have to make some software modifications to iOS to comply with the panic button request.

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April 25

AAPL: 105.08

-0.60
Stock Chart

Alongside the announcement of the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus last year, Apple announced a new program designed at encouraging users to upgrade their device every year, as opposed to the traditional two-year cycle. At launch, the iPhone Upgrade Program was oddly only available to customers shopping in Apple Stores. Today, however, Apple has expanded the program to the online store so all customers can now take advantage of it.

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electrek 

After focusing heavily on Earth Day in its last round of YouTube uploads, Apple today has shared a pair of new iPhone 6s ads that each highlight a different feature of the device. The first ad is entitled “Fingerprint” and focuses on what Touch ID enables users to do, while the second ad is entitled “Onions” and highlights the 4K camera capabilities of the device.

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