Apple premieres another new iPhone ad, this time focusing on iOS 8’s voice message feature

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Following the release of two new iPhone ads earlier this week, Apple has put out yet another commercial for the iPhone 6. Like the others, “Voice Text” features Tonight Show host Jimmy Fallon and pop star Justin Timberlake discussing the newest features on Apple’s smartphone.

In this ad, Fallon and Timberlake demonstrate the many uses for the new voice messaging feature included in iOS 8, such as including sarcasm or difficult-to-spell words in a reply. You can check out the full ad below:

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Predicted cannibalisation of iPads by larger iPhones underway as iPhone 6/Plus changes browsing habits

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Predictions that larger-screened iPhones would cannibalise iPad usage look to be confirmed by some stats from the Pocket app that allows you to save webpages, videos and other content for reading later.

Pocket reported in a blog post today that while 55% of owners of the iPhone 5s viewed content on their phone rather than iPad, the number leapt to 72% for the iPhone 6 and 80% for the iPhone 6 Plus …

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IDC: iPad’s first year of decline expected as worldwide tablet growth significantly slows

ipadThe latest numbers from market research company IDC reveal that worldwide tablet growth is expected to have significantly declined in 2014, with just 7.2% year-over-year growth compared to 52.5% in 2013. A contributing factor will likely be the iPad’s first year of decline as the tablet’s market share continues to fall because of a growing number of cheaper alternatives. Read more

Apple crosses $700 billion market cap milestone, stock price up 50% since January

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Apple stock ($AAPL) crossed yet another momentous milestone for its financials, hitting $700 billion market capitalization as the stock ticked over $119.65. At a pre-split price, this tallies $837.13. The stock last peaked in late 2012, when it topped out in the mid $650’s. That’s a $50 billion increase from two weeks ago.

Through 2013, the price tumbled over investor doubts about new product categories and Cook’s leadership. In recent months, though, $AAPL stock has returned and surpassed its 2012 highs. The reduction in shares due to Apple’s buybacks program has been more than offset than share price growth, off the back of the company’s strong earnings and forecasts.

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Retailers w/ iBeacons have upper hand this holiday as shoppers embrace location-based offers

The latest stats from Swirl Networks, the company behind a number of beacon deployments at high-profile retailers, shows that shoppers in the US are embracing Bluetooth beacons and along with it Apple’s iBeacon framework for app developers sending location sensitive notifications to users. More specifically, data collected from the company’s beacon deployments in recent months shows that beacons are influencing the way we shop with more than half engaging with the feature and many redeeming beacon offers when making purchases.  Read more

Hands-on with Pinć, a $99 VR headset for iPhone 6 w/ Minority Report-style user interfaces (Video)

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Last week I met up with the people behind Pinć (Pinch), an under development VR headset that utilizes Minority Report-style user interfaces opposed to the mostly gaming experiences we’ve seen thus far from the competition. There are also a few other big differentiators for Pinc: it doubles as an iPhone case, uses hand gestures tracked by the iPhone’s camera for input, and includes a full SDK for developers built on Unity. Read more

GarageBand, Star Walk, Threes and more apps go (RED) until December 7th, all proceeds going to charity

A range of apps have been updated today with limited-time promotions, in aid of the (RED) charity. Apple has participated in the event with an update to GarageBand, offering a limited-edition In-App Purchase that makes over 300 new drum, guitar, synth and bass loops available as an In-App Purchase. All proceeds from the sale of this expansion pack go directly to the (RED) charity, which sends the money to the Global Fund to fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria. The In-App Purchase, which is priced at $0.99, will be available until December 7th.

Other notable developers are also participating, many of which including exclusive additional content. For example, Threes has been updated, with a fresh red theme and updated icon. Monument Valley has added one special (RED) level, Star Walk has added exploration of Mars, The Red Planet. The popular drawing app, Paper, has also participated with a red application theme and icon. The ‘Over’ app has made special edition font and artwork packs available for purchase. djay and Heads Up! are also taking part in the event. Like GarageBand, 100% of proceeds of app and IAP sales go to the (RED) fund.

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Review: Pad and Quill’s Contega Linen case for iPad Air 2 is handmade perfection (Video)

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It’s always refreshing to see iOS accessory makers doing something different and Pad & Quill leads the pack in this area. With handmade cases crafted from linen, leather, and wood, it’s hard to go wrong with this simplistically elegant spin on cases.

Lately I’ve been using Pad & Quill’s Contega Linen case for iPad Air 2 and it’s changed my mind about “premium” cases. There’s something beautifully different about the craftsmanship and it’s created from materials that are designed to last, but not without a steep entry price for some…

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Apple supplier Corning says new Gorilla Glass 4 twice as shatter-resistant in drop tests (Video)

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The GTAT mess may have forced Apple to abandon its presumed plans to replace iPhone Gorilla Glass screens with sapphire, but next year’s iPhone displays could still prove up to twice as shatter-resistant, says glass-maker Corning.

Corning said that studying hundreds of broken phone screens had revealed the unsurprising fact that shattered screens most commonly occurred in a one-meter drop onto a rough surface like concrete or asphalt. Drop tests in these conditions found that Gorilla Glass 4 survived up to 80% of such impacts – twice the record of the Gorilla Glass 3 used in current iPhones.

While there was much scientific testing behind the scenes, the videos the company used to illustrate the improved strength were rather less scientific in nature …

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Department of Justice: iPhone encryption will lead to the death of a child

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Apple and the government have long been engaged in a bitter war of words over encryption and security practices employed in Apple’s iOS devices, but a new Wall Street Journal report indicates that the Department of Justice is really starting to take the rhetoric to the next level.

According to the Journal, a DOJ official actually told Apple executives during a meeting last month that in the future the Cupertino company could eventually be directly responsible for the death of a child. Read more

Apple Online Store frontpage redesigned ahead of Black Friday, pushing iOS devices, Macs and Beats accessories

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For Black Friday, Apple has refreshed the frontpage of its online store with a rather-drastic redesign. Each product category now dominates the webpage, with full-bleed images of their main product lines. The new iPad updates get the top spot, but interestingly Apple TV and Beats headphones also get prime placement. In fact, the product images for Beats accessories are so large, it only takes four images to dominate the screen.

The strap-line ‘From one gift come many’ headlines the page, which also links up with Apple’s upcoming retail store holiday changes. The same tagline will soon be featured in Apple Store windows around the world, highlighting the wide scope of the iPhone and iPad, as shown below.

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Apple’s iPhone 6 Plus & iPad Air 2 lose out to Samsung & Surface in detailed color accuracy analysis

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Following its detailed reports on displays used in the new iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 3, today DisplayMate published a scientific analysis of color accuracy for the six best mobile displays it’s tested this year. Despite ranking high in some categories in the test, Apple’s new entries, the iPhone 6 Plus and iPad Air 2, end up at the bottom of the list overall. Read more