Jordan Kahn


Senior Editor, 9to5Mac – 9to5Google – 9to5Toys

Contact Jordan with news tips and long-winded complaints at  

Jordan writes about all things Apple as a senior editor for 9to5Mac. He also covers Google for and the latest gear and deals on

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January 29, 2013


T-Mobile has yet to provide specific details on its deal to begin selling Apple products this year, but its plan to eliminate subsidies and provide users with the ability to purchase devices with monthly installments in the next three months is getting a lot of attention. We assume this offer of purchasing a smartphone through $15 to $20 installments for 20 months will extend to the iPhone, as T-Mobile USA CEO John Legere recently hinted. According to Reuters, who recently spoke with the CEOs of Verizon and AT&T, the other major iPhone carriers are very intrigued by the strategy.

AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson told Reuters he likes the idea and would keep a close eye on T-Mobile’s strategy:

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We previously reported that Apple would likely introduce a new 128GB iPad model, and today the company made things official with a press release on its website announcing the product. As predicted, Apple will make both Wi-Fi-only and cellular options for the new 128GB capacity fourth-generation iPad. Apple also confirmed that both black and white models of the device would be available starting Feb. 5 through Apple’s online store, retail locations, and authorized resellers.

Confirming our report from earlier this week, Apple announced pricing for the new iPad would start at $799 for the Wi-Fi-only model and $929 for the cellular model.

“With more than 120 million iPads sold, it’s clear that customers around the world love their iPads, and everyday they are finding more great reasons to work, learn and play on their iPads rather than their old PCs,” said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing. “With twice the storage capacity and an unparalleled selection of over 300,000 native iPad apps, enterprises, educators and artists have even more reasons to use iPad for all their business and personal needs.”

Apple also noted in its press release that it currently has over 10 million iWork users. The full press release is below: expand full story

January 28, 2013

A demo of Angry Bots iOS app embedded using Kickfolio

We told you about a service called Kickfolio in December that would allow developers to demo their iOS apps directly in the browser using a new HTML5-based platform. The service converts a zipped version of an iOS app into a private test page with a completely interactive HTML5 and CSS version of the app. Today, the service got a few updates including the ability to embed app demos on any webpage using an iframe. You’ll find embedded iOS apps above and below that Kickfolio sent over for us to try. Kickfolio also now supports iPad apps, and it is making the service much more affordable for all. This is a powerful tool for developers promoting their apps online, and it’s one I expect many to take advantage of when providing free demos to potential customers and press on their website.

Kickfolio originally had some feedback for users about plans starting at $50 a month. The good news: the company just slashed the cheapest plan to $9 a month (that includes 500 embed sessions). Every plan now also includes unlimited apps, and the company is reopening 15-day free trials so everyone will get a chance to try the new features.

Another embedded app demo from Kickfolio below: expand full story

Last month we discovered the latest Apple TV beta has a new Bluetooth menu that allows users to pair a wireless keyboard to second and third-gen Apple TVs. With Apple’s release of iOS 6.1 to the public today and an update to Apple TV, you’ll probably be in the market for the right Bluetooth keyboard to occupy a spot next to your already crowded table full of remotes. Below we have put together a few of our favorite compact options that will pair perfectly with your Apple TV.  expand full story


After releasing iOS 6.1 with support for more LTE carriers, Siri movie-ticket purchasing, and more, Apple also released an update to Apple TV that brings Bluetooth keyboard support (as previously discovered), Up Next, and an enhanced iTunes in the Cloud service. As highlighted in the image above, Apple added the Up Next feature it first introduced in iTunes 11, along with the previously discovered Bluetooth keyboard support and the ability to browse and play purchased iTunes music from iCloud.

Check out our roundup of the 10 best Bluetooth keyboards to pair with your Apple TV.

Curiously, Apple also appears to have released an update for unannounced AppleTV 3,2: expand full story

Jeremy Horwitz of iLounge, who just recently claimed to have details on the upcoming iPad 5 and iPhone lineup, today shared additional details on Apple’s rumored low-cost iPhone. According to the report, reliable sources have confirmed that the device will be made “substantially from plastic.” Horwitz said the new budget iPhone will look almost identical to the iPhone 5 from the front, with a 4-inch, 1,136-by-640 display, but it will also include a curved design that blends elements of the iPod touch and iPod classic:

No, it won’t just be a Retina- and Lightning-equipped refresh of the iPhone 3G or 3GS, Apple’s last plastic iPhones, nor will it look just like an all-plastic version of the iPhone 5. This new model is actually a cross between the iPhone 5, fifth-generation iPod touch, and… wait for it… the iPod classic. Yes, really. It will have a 4” screen, like the iPhone 5, a bottom like the latest iPod touch, and a shape that’s most similar to the iPod classic.

While the report claimed the device would look almost identical to the iPhone 5 from the front, it will also slightly increase in size. Horwitz said the low-cost iPhone will be “a half-millimeter taller and a half-millimeter wider—nearly imperceptible differences—as well as almost a millimeter thicker” than the current iPhone 5.

On the back of the device, rather than the fully curved design of the plastic iPhone 3G and 3GS, the report described a device with curves similar to the iPod classic (as highlighted in the image above). Horwitz continued with details on the positioning of the budget iPhone’s Lightning connector, headphone port, camera, and speakers:

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According to the latest numbers from Strategy Analytics that measure global smartphone operating system shipments and marketshare for the fourth quarter of 2012, iOS and Android together accounted for 92 percent of all shipments. Both iOS and Android were able to significantly increase market share over Q3, while global smartphone shipments over the entire year reached a record 700.1 million units.

As for iOS, Apple grew 29 percent annually by selling 135.8 million iPhones throughout the year. The company captured 22 percent of the market in Q4, down from the 24 percent it held in the year-ago quarter, and its share of the smartphone market for the year comes in at 19.4-percent. According to Strategy Analytics, that is up slightly from the 19 percent it took during 2011.

With the “others” category shrinking from 32.3-percent of the market in 2011 to just 12.2-percent in 2012, Android was able to post the largest gains jumping to 70.1-percent of the global market during the fourth quarter from 51.3-percent a year ago. The other category of course includes other platforms, such as BlackBerry, Symbian, Bada, and Windows, all of which together only grabbed 7.9-percent of the market in Q4 2012. That’s down from 25.1-percent in Q4 2011. Android’s gains are clearly at the expense of the “others,” as Apple continues to slowly gain marketshare as well.

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January 25, 2013

new report from Jeremy Horwitz of iLounge provided us with what he claimed is a few details on the upcoming fifth-generation iPad based on hands-on time with a “supposedly accurate” physical model. He also claimed to have details on upcoming iPhone releases.

Horwitz noted he has inspected what he believed are casings for the iPad 5, and he described a completely redesigned device with “virtually no left or right bezels, and only enough space above and below the screen to accommodate the mandatory camera and Home Button elements.” As previously rumored, Horwitz claimed the fifth-gen iPad as iPad mini-like in its physical design with similar “chamfered edges and curves” along with the slimmed down bezel.

He also speculated that Apple could go with an IGZO display to achieve what he said is a much thinner design compared to previous generations:

Beyond that, it’s noticeably thinner, as well, which is to say the the fifth-generation iPad will be smaller in every dimension than its predecessors. As it will have the same chamfered edges and curves, calling it a “stretched iPad mini” is very close to entirely accurate… The changes are so considerable that a new screen technology, such as IGZO, seems like a given. Going Retina for the third-generation iPad forced Apple to make that tablet a little thicker than the iPad 2, in part to seriously beef up the battery.

The report also said that Apple is now targeting an October release for the iPad 5, “give or take a couple of weeks,” after originally planning for a March launch.

Horwitz, who has been accurate with details of unreleased Apple products in the past, also claimed to have new details on the upcoming iPhone releases:

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YouTube Capture version 1.1: Google has updated its newly released YouTube Capture app with some welcomed features including 1080p video uploads:

· 1080p uploads!
· Improved audio sync
· More detailed upload feedback
· Share to networks after uploading
· Bug fixes & stability improvements

Vine — Make a scene version 1.0.2: Just released yesterday, the app for sharing short video clips (and recently acquired by Twitter) today updated with improvements to profiles and more reliable Twitter integration:

* Logging in through Twitter is more reliable
* You can now update your profile photo from your Camera Roll
* Character limit for usernames and bio field
* International keyboards have better support
* Various bugs that caused crashes have been fixed

Google Currents-01Google Currents version 2.0: Google is updating another one of its apps today, its magazine style news reader for tablets and smartphones now sports a new catalog design. The update also includes an Edition sidebar for quick access to categories, a new fast scan feature (Vertical swipe to scan an edition, horizontal swipe advances to next edition), and a new breaking stories section ranked by Google News. You can also now star to save stories for future reading: expand full story


Apple last night released its annual Supplier Responsibility Report that outlines the progress being made for everything from empowering workers to labor and human rights issues within its supply chain. It also highlighted audit results for 393 audits performed during the year—a 72-percent increase over the number of audits it performed in 2011. Apple said its worker empowerment program providing education on local laws and the company’s supplier code of conduct was extended to 1.3 million employees during 2012. That’s double the amount of workers trained in the program since 2008.

As noted by Bloomberg, Apple’s report has information about a Chinese labor agency that had forged documents for underage employees to work in Apple-connected suppliers. Underage workers have been a big focus for Apple since news reports and Fair Labor Association audits last year exposed some of the issues with the conditions of Apple’s supply chain. Since discovering 74 cases of workers under the age of 16 during an audit of a circuit board supplier last January, Apple has terminated its contract with the company and is now going after the agency that did the hiring.

In January 2012, for example, we audited a supplier, Guangdong Real Faith Pingzhou Electronics Co., Ltd. (PZ) that produces a standard circuit board component used by many other companies in many industries. Our auditors were dismayed to discover 74 cases of workers under age 16—a core violation of our Code of Conduct. As a result, we terminated our business relationship with PZ.

As for the Quanshun agency, one of the region’s largest labor agencies, Apple reported it discovered the company was forging papers for underage workers. Apple said in the report that it has reported the agency to officials, who in turn suspended the agency’s business license:
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Q4 2012 estimates from Strategy Analytics

While Samsung has conveniently left specific smartphone sales numbers out of its Q4 earnings release yesterday (as usual), today we get a look at the latest estimates for the quarter coming from research firms Strategy Analytics and IDC.

We know that Apple sold 47.8 million iPhones during the quarter, and today both research firms put Samsung just over 63 million units for Q4 2012. That means Samsung was able to capture 29 percent of the market last quarter (up from 36.2 million units and 22.5-percent of the market in the year ago quarter). Apple is of course a close second among the top five smartphone vendors with 21.8-percent—down slightly from the 23 percent it held in the same quarter last year. In Q4 2011, Apple and Samsung were neck and neck at about 23 percent of the market each.

The increasing market share for Apple, and especially Samsung, over the past year comes at the expense of Nokia. It experienced a drop from 16 percent to 5 percent of the market during the past year.  expand full story

January 24, 2013


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