Zac Hall

@apollozac

Zac also contributes to 9to5Google.

Email / AIM: zac@9to5mac.com

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July 22, 2015

Roughly two weeks after the initial release, Apple has pushed out an update to users testing the iOS 9 public beta on iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. The latest public beta release follows the earlier release of iOS 9 beta 4 for registered developers developing for the upcoming operating system update. iOS 9 is set to be completed and shipped to all users later this fall. iOS 9 public beta 2 mirror’s yesterday’s iOS 9 beta 4 release. expand full story

New data from research firm Strategy Analytics shows that Apple’s introduction into the smartwatch market made a dramatic shift in both the overall size of the market and which companies are on top.

According to the firm’s data, Apple claimed a massive 75.5% of the global smartwatch marketshare in Q2 2015 with the launch of the Apple Watch in late April. It also shows that Apple’s entrance stole a huge portion of Samsung’s marketshare as the previous smartwatch market leader dropped 66 points from 73.6% marketshare to a single digit 7.5% …  expand full story

July 21, 2015

Apple earnings day is here at last. Catch up on the company’s latest results here while we await the quarterly conference call between Tim Cook, Luca Maestri and analysts. In summary, Apple reporting earnings $10.7 billion in profit from $49 billion in revenue after 47 million iPhone sales, 10.9 million iPad sales, and 4.7 million Mac sales during the company’s Q3 period. Analysts will likely push Tim Cook and company on sharing more information around Apple Watch sales during the call. The quarter covers the April to June period which includes Apple Watch sales in a number of countries from April 24th and on. Apple’s conference call kicks off at 2 p.m. PT/5 p.m. ET so stay tuned for our live coverage below: expand full story

Right on schedule, Apple has shared its Q3 2015 earnings results reporting revenue of $49 billion and $10.7 billion in profit during the April to June period. Notably, the company’s Q3 period is the first that includes initial Apple Watch sales as the device first launched on April 24th.

Apple® today announced financial results for its fiscal 2015 third quarter ended June 27, 2015. The Company posted quarterly revenue of $49.6 billion and quarterly net profit of $10.7 billion, or $1.85 per diluted share. These results compare to revenue of $37.4 billion and net profit of $7.7 billion, or $1.28 per diluted share, in the year-ago quarter. Gross margin was 39.7 percent compared to 39.4 percent in the year-ago quarter. International sales accounted for 64 percent of the quarter’s revenue.

While Apple isn’t specifically breaking out Apple Watch sales (or iPod sales for that matter), the company does disclose iPhone, iPad, and Mac sales by unit:

  • iPhone: 47 million units
  • iPad: 10.9 million units
  • Mac: 4.7 million units

While Apple isn’t breaking out Apple Watch or Beats numbers, the ‘other services’ which includes those categories as well as iPods and Apple TV reports $2.6 billion in revenue.

Apple CEO Tim Cook said this about the company’s Q3 results:

“We had an amazing quarter, with iPhone revenue up 59 percent over last year, strong sales of Mac, all-time record revenue from services, driven by the App Store, and a great start for Apple Watch,” said Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO. “The excitement for Apple Music has been incredible, and we’re looking forward to releasing iOS 9, OS X El Capitan and watchOS 2 to customers in the fall.”

Luca Maestri, Apple’s chief financial officer, added this:

“In the third quarter our year-over-year growth rate accelerated from the first half of fiscal 2015, with revenue up 33 percent and earnings per share up 45 percent,” said Luca Maestri, Apple’s CFO. “We generated very strong operating cash flow of $15 billion, and we returned over $13 billion to shareholders through our capital return program.”

Today’s Q3 results follow last quarter’s $58 billion in revenue and 61.1 million iPhones sold, 12.6 million iPads sold, and 4.5 million Macs sold globally. During the same quarter a year ago with the iPhone 5s at the top of the lineup, Apple reported $37.4 billion in revenue and 35.2 million iPhones sold, 13.2 million iPads sold, and 4.4 million Mac sales. Apple reported $13.6 billion in profit last quarter and $7.7 billion during the same quarter a year ago.

The company’s quarterly conference call is scheduled for 2 PM Pacific/5 PM Eastern to discuss today’s results. Stay tuned for our live coverage of the call. Both Cook and Maestri usually review the quarterly results before fielding questions from analysts. With the first Apple Watch sales included in today’s report, the new device is sure to be a major topic of the call.

Apple’s complete Q3 earnings report is below: expand full story

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump responded to Senator Lindsey Graham calling him a jackass today by publicly revealing a phone number belonging to the senator in front of a crowd of supporters. Graham responded on Twitter by saying he was ‘probably getting a new phone’ and asking his followers whether he should choose Android or iOS. It would probably be easier to just change that phone number, right? Either way, I’d wait for the iPhone 6S.

As Apple continues to develop watchOS 2.0 for Apple Watch ahead of its release this fall, the company has released watchOS 2 beta 4 to registered developers today for testing the operating system update on Apple Watch.

The upcoming OS update includes a ton of improvements to the platform including support for native apps, third-party complications, new watch faces including using your own photos, a clever Night Stand mode for using the watch as a miniature alarm clock, and several refinements to apps and features like Digital Touch and Siri.

The previous beta included improvements to battery life and Notification Center bugs that plagued earlier betas plus Apple Music support, but Apple ID setup and Apple Pay were disabled for the pre-release software betas. We’ll dig in to the latest beta version and update with notable changes discovered. expand full story

Roughly two weeks after the previous build with Apple Music support included, Apple has released iOS 9 beta 4 for iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch to registered developers. iOS 9 includes new or redesigned built-in apps including the Flipboard-like News app and an overhauled Notes app, powerful iPad multitasking features, and a new system feature built around search and intelligence called Proactive. The previous beta included the first look at Apple’s News app, support for Apple Music and Beats 1, and other changes including Screenshots and Selfies albums in Photos and 4×4 app folders on the iPad. We’ll dig in to today’s release and update with changes in the latest beta. expand full story

Apple and IBM today unveiled 10 new enterprise apps across several industries including tools for government inspectors, business travelers and managers, and field service professionals for the first time. The latest apps bring the number of iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch apps built for the enterprise under Apple’s IBM MobileFirst for iOS partnership to 32 in total. Here are the new apps joining the list today: expand full story

July 20, 2015

Screenshot via Re/code

Screenshot via Re/code

With custom playlists at the center of Apple Music’s discovery experience, Apple’s biggest streaming competitor Spotify is also focusing its efforts on playlists for its latest feature called Discover Weekly. It’s not exactly a “me too” feature, though, as Apple’s and Spotify’s approaches each differ in how playlists are created. While Apple highlights having human editors curating its featured playlists, Spotify is basing its new feature around listening behavior to deliver weekly recommendations… expand full story

July 17, 2015

Apple Pay went live in the UK earlier this week with its first international rollout since debuting in the US last October, but Apple’s iPhone- and Apple Watch-based mobile payment solution hasn’t been without its own launch issues across the pond. To start, Apple Pay is a bit restricted in the UK as it is limited to transactions under £20 until September when the contactless payment rules change and the limit increases slightly to £30. Aside from a low transaction limit, paying with the iPhone or Apple Watch using Apple Pay at the London Underground transportation system has caused some initial confusion for riders as there are a few things to consider when paying electronically… expand full story

Apple introduced a new iPod touch on Wednesday as we expected after selling nearly the same model for almost three years, and today iFixit has shared its routine teardown to grade the device’s ability to be repaired and catalog exactly what’s inside Apple’s newest iOS device.

While the exterior of the new iPod touch remains largely the same aside from new color options and the removal of the Loop camera strap, the teardown does confirm the RAM upgrade caught in benchmarks earlier this week and a slightly larger battery than the previous model… expand full story

Yep, that’s a cracked Apple Watch display. Nope, it’s not actually an Edition, just plated, but the $549 and up steel model uses the same sapphire display as Apple’s $10,000 and up watch. And yes, the Apple Watch’s sapphire display reacts to accidental drops against hard surfaces just like iPhones.

In describing the craftsmanship of the Apple Watch, Apple calls sapphire “the second-hardest transparent substance after diamond,” adding that “that’s why we chose it to cover the Apple Watch and Apple Watch Edition faces,” but it still sells a $79 AppleCare+ warranty to cover accidental damage because sapphire is clearly not invincible.

Here’s what to expect if you accidentally break your Apple Watch display and what I learned about how easily it can happen… expand full story

July 16, 2015

Solar cell touch surface patent

Apple tends to patent every one of its inventions that could possibly be used in a future product, so it can be difficult to read the tea leaves on which ones will eventually translate to product features. A new patent from Apple highlighted by PatentlyApple today, though, describes a technology that would be a very welcome remedy to battery life issues. The patent covers applying solar cells to a touch display surface like a trackpad or iPhone to store power for the device: expand full story

Following the initial launch campaign, Apple is debuting four new Apple Watch ads showing the device in action in several different real-world scenarios. The first video called Goals demonstrates a range of features including the Apple Watch’s fitness and workout tracking apps as well as third-party apps available for the device. Another video called Closer echoes a similar theme of recent Apple ads that show people using Apple’s products to stay in communication and share experiences. expand full story

First pitched by Steve Jobs in 2007 as “an iPod, a phone, and an Internet communicator,” the iPhone has since evolved into a medical device of sorts as software has gotten smarter and sensors have become more advanced in recent years.

Apple embraced this with iOS 8 and the rollout of HealthKit, a framework which allows medical and health apps to share data with each other and your doctors with your permission. Apple’s open source ResearchKit took it a step further by allowing developers to turn apps into scientific health and medical research tests.

Scientific American recently profiled three smartphone apps in development that point to how the iPhone could become even better at monitoring our health. The apps in development aim to determine what a patient’s cough means, diagnose sleep apnea, and even predict a bipolar episode before it starts… expand full story

July 15, 2015

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