Former Apple Retail SVP Ron Johnson reportedly working on gadget delivery service

Ron Johnson (l.), George Blankenship, Jerry McDougal

Ron Johnson (left) with George Blankenship (center) and Jerry McDougal (right)

The information published a report today with details about a new startup former Apple Retail SVP Ron Johnson is building. The report shares that Johnson is launching a new delivery service focused on tech products following his brief run as CEO of retailer JCPenney:

Ron Johnson, who left Apple in 2011 for a controversial stint as the CEO of J.C. Penney, is launching a high-end, on-demand delivery service for gadgets, according to several people who have talked to him about it. And he has recruited some former Apple employees, including one-time Apple VP executive Jerry McDougal, to help.

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New rubber gaskets around buttons help iPhone 6/Plus withstand brief dips in water

In iFixit’s ritual dismantling of the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus last week, the repair company noted that Apple had started including rubber gaskets around the power and volume buttons likely in an effort to make the iPhone more water and dust resistant.

Similar gaskets surround the volume buttons. Altogether, this seems to represent a move toward increased water/dust resistance, and therefore improved durability.

iPhone-6-water-proof-gasketsiFixit

How did Apple do? Well iPhone warranty provider Squaretrade was able to dunk both the 6 and 6 Plus for 10 seconds without any real damage. While this is indeed nice to have, especially for those of us who like to take our iPhones with us to the pool, it is by no means a guarantee like Samsung and Sony have on some of their phones.

And then there is the toilet. If you are willing to go after your iPhone 6 within a few seconds, you might actually have a good chance at saving it.

The slightly amphibious nature of the iPhone 6 isn’t entirely new either. Previous iPhones have been able to go underwater for a few seconds (see iPhone 5c below) but as you can see buttons and features rapidly begin to fail.  Read more

Talking Schmidt: Google’s executive chairman challenges Tim Cook on privacy citing Chrome’s ‘incognito mode’

Key Speakers At Global Investment Conference

In his letter on privacy shared last week, Apple CEO Tim Cook contrasted the business model of Apple against that of its competitors while strongly taking a shot at Google, Gmail, and Android without actually naming the company and services. The infinitely entertaining executive chairman of Google and former Apple board member Eric Schmidt was recently asked by ABC News about Cook’s open letter on the company and privacy.

In short, Schmidt, who is making the media rounds to promote his upcoming book How Google Works, said Cook’s description of Google and privacy is incorrect, which you would expect from the Google chairman. But his first shot at debunking Cook’s claim was sort of out of left field (okay, as you also might expect): Read more

Research firm IHS says Samsung supplying 40% of iPhone 6 A8 chips despite move to TSMC

A8

A product teardown of both the new 4.7-inch iPhone 6 and 5.5-inch iPhone 6 Plus devices last week confirmed earlier reports that Apple is indeed opting for TSMC (Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company) to produce the 20nm, second generation 64-bit A8 chip that drives the new iPhones. Research firm IHS, however, has shared a teardown analysis report with Re/code that claims Samsung is still responsible for a fraction of Apple’s A8 chips produced.

Rassweiler said the processor he saw during the teardown was manufactured by Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co., the massive chip-factory-for-hire based in Taipei. [...] Rassweiler says TSMC is manufacturing about 60 percent of the chips for Apple, while Samsung is still turning about about 40 percent.

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Samsung moves up Galaxy Note 4 launch in response to strong iPhone 6/Plus sales

Note-4-01

Samsung has reportedly decided to move up the launch of its new Galaxy Note 4 smartphone following a positive reaction and strong first week sales from Apple’s new larger iPhones 6 models. The KoreaTimes cited an unnamed employee in Samsung’s marketing department who said “the positive reaction from consumers to those two Apple devices prompted us to launch the Note 4 earlier than previously scheduled.” Read more

Apple quietly removes promise of 2014 CarPlay availability as it adds CBS News Radio compatibility

carplay

Apple has quietly updated its CarPlay microsite which explains the feature to add CBS News Radio to its growing list of apps it grants CarPlay support to, but a bigger change also appears on the CarPlay site this morning. Apple is no longer promising CarPlay support from any automobile manufacturer this year as it has done since its debut in March. While there has been no shortage of CarPlay demoes and availability announcements, actually getting your hands on a model with CarPlay thus far has proven almost impossible.

The site now says CarPlay “will be available” from listed partners without offering any specific timeframe (and removing the 2014 language for specific brands altogether). This is likely due to delays in CarPlay availability thus far, even in models that have announced support earlier this year with cars that are now on the road. Read more

Black market iPhone 6 prices fall as Chinese regulators say final approvals are coming soon

iPhone-6-prices

iPhone smuggling into China is nothing new, but this year it has perhaps been even more of a problem as Apple awaits regulatory approvals to begin selling its new iPhone models in the country. The good news is that a report from CNBC notes that regulators in the country said today that final reviews of licenses for the new iPhones would be “completed soon”.  Read more

As shown at WWDC, Bing Search app brings translation extension to Safari

The Bing Search app has been updated to include the translation feature first demoed at WWDC, as part of the initial unveiling of iOS 8 extensions.

Very simply, downloading the update adds a Bing Translate action to your Activities list in Safari. Enable the action and then visit a website in a foreign language. Pressing the Translate action in the share sheet will machine translate the webpage’s text to the system language, by default. The text content changes inline and happens very quickly.

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Apple: Almost 50% of the iOS devices that visited the App Store Sunday were iOS 8 (9to5Mac readers: 80%)

app-store-ios 8-adoption

Apple isn’t bragging on its iOS 8 adoption numbers like it has in years past because it appears uptake has been slightly slower. The reason? The much bigger iOS 8 download doesn’t fit on many people’s devices which are often stuffed to capacity with music, movies, photos and apps.

(Hint: Here’s how to slim some GBs off your iOS 8 device or install via iTunes on a Mac/PC which doesn’t require extra space)

9to5-image 2014-09-23 at 5.31.11 AMApple’s latest numbers are for Sunday September 21, 2014 and show that from people who visited the App Store on their iOS device, 46% were already on the new iOS 8.  On one hand this number is skewed higher because most of the early adopter nature of frequent App Store visitors but on the other hand many people visit the App Store from older devices that can’t be updated to iOS 8.

Apple’s own numbers show something else slightly troubling. App Store app submissions are being delayed slightly as of iOS 8 launch with only 74% of app updates and 53% of new apps being reviewed. Apple is usually in the high 90% range on iOS as it is with Mac.

As for 9to5Mac readers’ iOS adoption, the numbers are much much higher than the general audience as you’d probably expect. This morning, we’re close to 80% iOS 8 adoption. The pie chart from Google Analytics taken at 5:30 am ET is below:

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Apple releases Mail app update for OS X Yosemite Developer Preview & Public Beta

Screenshot 2014-09-22 14.03.50

Apple today has released an update to OS X Yosemite’s official Mail application via Software Update in the Mac App Store. It’s available for both developers and customers on the public beta. Apple says that the update fixes an issue related to users being unable to compose messages. It’s interesting that Apple issued this update as a standalone fix versus an entirely new developer preview. Apple released new developer and public betas for Yosemite last week. The final OS is expected to ship in late October.

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