Benjamin Mayo

@bzamayo

Benjamin develops app for iOS and writes about Apple news, product reviews and more on 9to5Mac and his personal blog. Follow Benjamin on Twitter to keep up with his latest projects. You can also email him directly.

Support Benjamin by buying his apps on the App Store, Bingo Machine and Writing Aid.

Benjamin Mayo's Recommended Gear

May 6

AAPL: 92.72

-0.52
Stock Chart

Apple is today introducing an Apple Music plan aimed at students. The service is identical in features to the standard plan but rather than paying $9.99 per month, qualifying students can subscribe to Apple Music for $4.99 per month. The offering is rolling out today in the United States, the United Kingdom, Germany, Australia and more countries (via TechCrunch). Prices vary per region but the discount should be around 50% of the normal Apple Music price.

To qualify, students must be currently attending an eligible university or college and gain the discount for up to four years. Apple has partnered with UNiDAYs to verify people who sign up to the student plan are legitimate students attending a school.

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May 5

AAPL: 93.24

-0.95
Stock Chart

In a statement, Apple has said that it will appeal a Chinese trademark ruling which saw the company lose exclusive rights to the iPhone name, allowing other Chinese companies to use the name for leather goods products. Obviously, the iPhone is Apple’s cash cow so the initial ruling was a big blow allowing legal dilution of its most-valuable brand.

Apple will take the appeal to the Supreme People’s court, the highest court in the Chinese law system …

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May 4

AAPL: 94.19

-0.99
Stock Chart
9to5toys 

May 3

AAPL: 95.18

1.54
Stock Chart

The iPhone 7 had been rumored to be dropping the analog 3.5 mm headphone jack, in favour of wireless Bluetooth or Lightning cable headphones for audio output. However, a new iPhone 7 component leak posted on Weibo disagrees with previous reports, depicting a board that includes a 3.5mm jack (in the top right of the photo above).

The 3.5mm jack is large (relative to the thinness of the phone), dates back more than a hundred years and has been superseded in terms of signal quality by the modern digital solutions, so it is plausible that Apple would want to abandon it. However, the idea of removing the port has been controversial (with complaints about existing accessory compatibility). This Chinese leak indicates it is sticking around …

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May 2

AAPL: 93.64

-0.10
Stock Chart

A Weibo report has surfaced that indicates the iPhone 7 may have a slightly larger battery than the current generation iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus. According to the poster, the iPhone 7 will include a battery with a 1735 mAH capacity and iPhone 7 Plus will feature a 2810 mAH battery. On both models, this is (slightly) more than the current-generation iPhones. The iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus have batteries with 1715 mAH and 2750 mAH respectively.

The iPhone 7 is rumored to look very similar to the current iPhone, with a thinner body and redesigned antennas. A major chassis design change is currently expected for the ‘iPhone 8’ in 2017.

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April 30

AAPL: 93.74

-1.09
Stock Chart

Developer Nick Lee has managed to hack a working version of Windows 95 onto his Apple Watch. The utility of this is close to zero — but it is hilarious to watch. It highlights how smart wristwatches like Apple Watch are now as powerful as (if not more than) desktop computers from the turn of the century. Watch the full video of the ‘microsoftOS’ Apple Watch in action after the jump …

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9to5google 

April 29

AAPL: 93.74

-1.09
Stock Chart

Apple has previously partnered with designer brand Hermes for a set of premium Apple Watch bands, sold separately from $340 per strap. It now appears that a second high-profile fashion designer, Coach, is coming on board with its own range of Apple Watch bands.

David Boglin De Bautista reports a sales associate in a Coach boutique told him about the upcoming collection, set to debut as early as June. The sales representative sent photos of the as-yet-unreleased bands (shown above), priced at $150 each.

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April 27

AAPL: 97.82

-6.53
Stock Chart

Following Apple’s earnings results last night, where it posted its first YOY quarterly revenue decline since 2003, AAPL has opened down more than 8% — the stock price is far below the $100 mark as morning trading begins. Apple reported revenue of $50 billion (compared against $58 billion in the year-ago quarter), on sales of 51.1 million iPhones, 10.2 million iPads and 4 million Macs.

The stock price fall means over 40 billion dollars of market cap value has been erased overnight. Market capitalization is the approximate value of the company, a multiple of the stock price and number of shares. The stock closed yesterday at $104.

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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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The FBI has decided it will not divulge the details of how it successfully hacked into the San Bernardino iPhone to Apple, having found a method at the last-minute just hours before going to court in late March. However, in an attempt to appear helpful and cooperative, the FBI gave Apple its first security tipoff under the Vulnerability Equities Process this month.

Reuters reports the FBI informed Apple of a security flaw affecting iOS and Mac software  on April 14th, as part of a process that balances the needs of law enforcement to hack devices and the needs of manufacturers to patch found flaws before criminals can use them …

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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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9to5toys 

April 26

AAPL: 104.35

-0.73
Stock Chart

Alongside its announcement of Apple’s quarterly earnings, its first revenue decline since 2003, Apple has also announced latest numbers for Apple Music, its $9.99 per month streaming music service. The company says it now has 13 million paying subscribers, up from 11 million in February.

This compares to about 30 million subscribers to leading competitor Spotify, although the service obviously had a multi-year headstart over Apple’s streaming service, which launched last June.

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Dropbox is today announcing a new upcoming feature of its platform, codenamed Project Infinite. When Infinite rolls out, you’ll be able to see all your files and folders stored on Dropbox in the Finder, but they won’t take up any space until they are needed. The company is currently targeting the feature at business users.

This means your Dropbox storage can be far larger in total size than your local disk (as is common with modern setups of 1 TB Dropbox tiers and small SSDs) with on-demand instantaneous access to any file at any time over the Internet …

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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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9to5google 

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

Ever since the iPad Pro came out, it seemed like an obvious third-party accessory would be a case that could also hold a Pencil. However, six months on, the number of iPad Pro cases with good Apple Pencil compatibility is still pretty small. You are by no means spoilt for choice if you are looking to buy an iPad Pro case with Apple Pencil holder.

The Dux ($59.95) is a solid attempt at such a case, a lightweight 12.9-inch iPad enclosure providing some protection against drops and bangs, with an Apple Pencil holster on the side. Its simplicity is refreshing, but that brings with it some shortcomings. Read on for my review.

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The iPhone 7, expected to debut later this year, is not believed to be a major design overhaul from the iPhone 6s, but that doesn’t mean it won’t include some substantial exterior changes, at least according to one sketchy Chinese rumor site. The reports indicate that the iPhone 7 could feature a digital touch-sensitive Home button, essentially making the iPhone front completely flush, replacing the current physical clicky hardware button. This would help make the iPhone 7 completely waterproof and dustproof, via Storm …

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electrek 

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