GM says 14 models of its Chevy-branded cars will feature CarPlay this year

carplay

General Motors CEO Mary Barra announced at Code Conference today where Apple’s Jeff Williams spoke that more than a dozen of its 2016 model cars will include support for Apple’s CarPlay and Google’s Android Auto feature. Specifically, GM will ship CarPlay in 14 Chevrolet-branded cars being released this year including the $15,000 Chevy Spark. Read more

CBS boss Les Moonves again acknowledges Apple’s ‘new skinny bundle’ TV Service, will probably sign up

At a Re/Code event today where Apple’s Jeff Williams is currently speaking, CBS’s Les Moonves told the audience that he’s also speaking to Apple…about a TV deal.

CBS CEO Les Moonves says his network will “probably” sign a deal with Apple to carry his network. “We’re very excited about it,” he told Kara Swisher at the Code Conference Wednesday morning. Moonves said that he met with Apple media boss Eddy Cue last week to discuss Apple’s plans, as part of an “ongoing conversation.”

Typically the #1 rule about negotiating deals with Apple is that you don’t talk about negotiating deals with Apple, but at this point the Apple TV needs network support more than the networks need Apple TV.

Moonves compared the service to other “skinny bundles” and said he’s not sure “how long it would take to hammer out a deal or when Apple would launch its service.” The main negotiating point? “Money.””

The funny thing is, Apple and Moonves have been at this for YEARS. It was the same story in 2012, except Mooneves was negotiating with Steve Jobs at the time and spilling the beans over an earnings call. From today:

“Apple TV is trying to change the universe,” Moonves said, by offering a smaller bundle of TV networks, delivered over the Web, than pay TV providers traditionally sell. Moonves said Apple’s effort was similar to ones that have already launched from Dish Network’s Sling and Sony’s Vue.

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Apple’s ‘Proactive’ to take on Google Now with deep iOS 9 search, Augmented Reality Maps, Siri API

Spotlight

After several years of quiet development, Apple is readying a major new iOS initiative codenamed “Proactive,” which will leverage Siri, Contacts, Calendar, Passbook, and third-party apps to create a viable competitor to Google Now for Android devices. Like Google Now, Proactive will automatically provide timely information based on the user’s data and device usage patterns, but will respect the user’s privacy preferences, according to sources familiar with Apple’s plans.

As an evolution of iOS’s Spotlight search feature, Proactive is the fruit of a long-term initiative that involved the acquisition of small app developers, and integration of core iOS apps. It will also work with Apple’s Maps application to display personally relevant points of interest using an augmented reality interface, and integrate with a third-party Siri API codenamed “Breadcrumbs”…

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Pixelmator for the iPhone launching tomorrow, we go hands on (update: now available!)

06. iCloud

Update: Pixelmator for iPhone is now available. Download it here.

Pixelmator is releasing an update to its iOS app tomorrow, making the app available on the iPhone for the first time ($4.99). The universal app means you can buy once and download Pixelmator on both iPad and iPhone. Existing iOS users of the app naturally get the iPhone version for free as an update. The new version also brings the Distort tools, like warp brushes, to the iOS app for the first time.

Pixelmator for iPhone works very similarly to the iPad version but scaled down for the smaller canvas. You can read our full review of the iPad app from last year. Rather than popover panels, selecting an action opens full-width menus encapsulating options. This is a necessary concession for the size of the display.

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Apple confirms WWDC keynote for June 8th 10 AM PST, teases over 180 TBA sessions

Apple has today confirmed that the WWDC keynote will be held at 10 AM PST on June 8th as usual, from the WWDC schedule in the newly-updated app. Apple will announce the next-generation versions of its operating systems, iOS 9 and OS X 10.11 with the potential for some new hardware and some surprises. Apple is expected to unveil its new streaming music service, based off Beats. It has also sent out WWDC keynote invites to select members of the press.

Like last year, Apple is teasing developers with a whole host of TBA sessions during the week of the conference with ‘inviting’ names. There’s over 180 ‘secret sessions’ in total. The details of these sessions are currently secret as they rely on information about iOS 9 and OS X 10.11 that is yet to be announced, so for now they use amusing placeholder titles until the keynote is over.

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Live Blog: Apple Senior VP of Operations Jeff Williams interview at Code Conference

Williams

Apple’s Senior Vice President of Operations Jeff Williams is being interviewed this morning at the Code Conference south of Los Angeles, and we are here live on the scene. As a key player in the development of the Apple Watch & ResearchKit, as well as in the operations for Apple’s product launches over the past several years, Williams will likely be able to shed interesting new light on several Apple-related topics. We’ll be providing a full-live blog below of the interview, which begins around 10:30AM Pacific Time/ 1:30 PM Eastern Time.

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How to fix the iOS text message bug causing iPhone crashing/reboot (U: Apple statement, watches too)

messages

Update: The Guardian notes that the bug also crashes the Apple Watch when you try to reply to a message.

Today news is flying around regarding an iOS bug that causes the Messages app to crash and iPhones to reboot when a certain string of text is received. There isn’t an official fix from Apple yet, but there are a few workarounds and fixes that you can do in the meantime before Apple patches the bug.

Here are a few fixes that users have discovered and sent in: Read more

Millward Brown explains why Apple retook #1 slot as world’s most valuable brand

apple-most-valuable-brand

Millward Brown’s full report on its 10th annual brand equity ranking sheds light on why Apple regained its #1 ranking from Google. The company bases its rankings on the perceptions of more than 3 million consumers across 50 countries.

With a 67 percent rise in Brand Value to $247 billion, Apple returned to number one in the BrandZ™ Top 100 Most Valuable Global Brands ranking. Success of the iPhone 6 and the related excitement surrounding the Apple brand drove the increase. Apple also led in the rate of brand value growth over 10 years – 1,446 percent.

The company noted that Apple’s remarkable growth in long-term brand equity was evident in the fact that it didn’t even make the top 100 brands when Millward Brown began its BrandZ measurements just ten years ago …  Read more

Snapchat CEO says that holding down Snaps to View might go away

"evan-spiegel-code-conference-2015"

Speaking at the Code Conference south of Los Angeles this evening, Snapchat CEO Evan Spiegel revealed that the key Snapchat feature of needing to hold down the display to view a photo or a video will go away in the future. Asked by Kara Swisher and Walt Mossberg about needing to hold down on the display to view content, Spiegel said that the feature was originally designed to circumvent the lack of a Screenshot API on the iPhone…

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Apple drops discoveryd in latest OS X beta following months of network issues

Screen Shot 2015-05-26 at 3.56.16 PM

After many complaints from the developer community about poor networking performance on Yosemite, the latest beta of OS X 10.10.4 has dropped discoveryd in favor of the old process used by previous versions of the Mac operating system. This should address many of the network stability issues introduced with Yosemite and its new networking stack.

The discoveryd process has been subject to much criticism in recent months as it causes users to regularly drop WiFi access and causes network shares to list many times over, due to bugs. Many developers, such as Craig Hockenberry, have complained about the buggy software and workarounds have been found to include substituting the older system (called mDNSResponder) back into Yosemite.

discoveryd would cause random crashes, duplicate names on the network and many other WiFi-relate bugs. In the latest beta, Apple appears to have applied the same fix as the enthusiasts by axing discoveryd completely.

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Opinion: Here’s how Apple can solve its 3 big, persistent pre-order problems

Apple Store Down

If you’re reading this article, you already know Apple’s pre-order drill for major new releases: Apple announces a new product, says advance online orders will start at 12:01am on a specific day, and then — when most of its customers are either exhausted or groggy — re-opens its online store to a pent-up frenzy of reservations. Virtually every time, Apple’s most dedicated customers deal with delays and web site loading problems. Sometimes, even if their orders were placed in the first hour or two of sales, they may also face uncertainty over adequate supplies for launch day deliveries.

Despite Apple CEO Tim Cook’s suggestion that the Apple Watch rollout could not be going better, his customers have widely deemed it a disaster: some unlucky people who pre-ordered Apple Watches in the first 10 minutes still haven’t received anything a full month later. Meanwhile, a group of “luckier” people — notably including scalpers — have found ways to skip Apple’s pre-order lines, walking into boutiques such as Maxfield in Los Angeles, and buying bunches of the same Watches pre-orderers are still waiting for.

Sure, overwhelming demand for new products can be hard to manage, and business gurus tend to write this off as a “good problem” for any company to have. But at some point, that good problem becomes chronic, frequently dissatisfying customers, which is when it has officially become a “bad problem.” Whether he admits it or not, that’s the situation Tim Cook faces today. The good news is that he’s well-known as a supply chain genius, so if anyone’s capable of fixing the three key problems within Apple’s screwy pre-order system, it’s him. My hope is that discussing these issues — as well as solutions — will inspire the improvements Apple’s customers have been wanting for a long time…

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iOS 9 Transit Maps to launch in a handful of cities in North America, Europe & China

Maps Transit

While Apple plans to debut its own mass transit directions service for Maps in iOS 9 as soon as June, the rollout will not be as ambitious as some users may have hoped. In its first iteration, Apple’s Transit service will only support approximately a half-dozen cities across the United States, Canada, and Europe, in addition to China, according to sources…

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