The iPhone and iPad reportedly captured 93% of mobile device profits in holiday quarter, 79% across 2014

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Apple reported the largest profit ever recorded by a public company in the holiday quarter, mostly driven by sales of 74 million iPhones with an average selling price of $687. According to Cannacord, this meant Apple captured 93% of handset smartphone profits. Perhaps more staggering is that it claims Apple dominated on similar levels across the entire of 2014 — with 79% of mobile device profits.

The analyst expects continued growth for the iPhone for the next few users, with an estimated 650 million iPhone users by the end of 2018.

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The Next Episode: Apple’s plans for Beats-based music service revealed

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Six months after buying the subscription music service Beats Music, Apple is actively working to launch a completely new paid streaming music service that will compete with Spotify and Rdio. Yet to be named, the new service is entirely Apple-designed, yet leverages Beats’ technologies and music content, a collaboration that has thus far led to personnel challenges and delays. Multiple sources within Apple and the music industry have provided the first in-depth details of Apple’s upcoming streaming service, which we share below.

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iOS 8 hits 72% adoption in latest data, still trails iOS 7 rate a year ago (Updated 2x)

iOS 8 adoption

Update 2/17: 73% iOS 8 adoption measured on February 16th, up 1% since February 2nd. Change shows 1% moving from iOS 7 to iOS 8 with ‘Earlier’ remaining at 3%.

Update 3/3: A month later, iOS 8 is now running on 3 out of 4 iOS devices according to Apple’s data. 75% of devices are now running iOS 8, with 22% still running iOS 7.

Apple released a new count today for the percentage of iOS devices accessing the App Store and running iOS 8. According to App Store Distribution data, 72% of iOS devices are now running iOS 8 with a quarter of devices running iOS 7 and a tiny 3% of users running iOS 6 or earlier versions using data “measured by the App Store on February 2, 2015.” That puts iOS 8 adoption up 3% since Apple last reported data two weeks ago with only 69% of devices running iOS 8 at the time. Read more

Apple Pay adds another 15 banks and credit unions, over 60 institutions now supported

Apple Pay MasterCard ad

Last month Apple rolled out support for dozens of banks and credit unions with Apple Pay bringing the count to more than 45 institutions, and today Apple is out with the first wave of the month adding more than a dozen new banks to its list of supported Apple Pay banks bringing the total count to over 60 institutions. Here are the new banks listed as supporting Apple Pay as of today: Read more

Opinion: Square Enix’s flip-flop on iOS 8 support spotlights App Store ambiguities, risks

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Square Enix’s The World Ends With You

 

Buying an app from the App Store is designed to be as easy as possible. A large button with a price tag sits as close to the app’s icon and name as possible, while additional details linger below. You’re not supposed to think or worry too much about each purchase — the transaction is impulse-driven when the price is low — and the implication is that the app will work when you get it, and keep working for a long time thereafter.

But what happens when an app — marketed as compatible with current iPhones, iPads, and iPod touches — is never updated for the latest version of iOS, and either stops working after an iOS upgrade, or never works at all on new devices? That’s the situation buyers of Square Enix’s $18 The World Ends with You: Solo Remix (and $20 iPad version) have found themselves in since iOS 8 was released. The game’s description claims that it “requires iOS 4.3 or later” and is compatible with devices that shipped with iOS 8, but it wasn’t actually iOS 8-compatible. Yesterday, Square Enix publicly flip-flopped on whether it would leave the game unplayable or fix it. Before changing its tune, the company told customers that they’d need to continue to keep using iOS 7 in order to play the game — an unrealistic alternative, though one that’s faced by users of numerous iOS apps that aren’t being updated by their developers.

By considering abandonment of the 69% of iOS users who are currently on iOS 8, Square Enix wasn’t just making a business choice; it was also spotlighting the risk App Store customers take every time they purchase an app. And it also revealed how long-unsolved App Store listing ambiguities are subjecting users, developers, and Apple itself to unnecessary problems.

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Apple builds national enterprise sales team for IBM partnership, targets industrial, healthcare, financial customers

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Apple is looking to hire individuals across the US for a team of IBM Business Development Executives that “will be accountable for all aspects of the Apple and IBM partnership for a defined geographic and account set territory.” That means Apple is hiring a team of individuals that will act as company liaisons to help roll out and oversee sales teams pushing the new Apple/IBM iOS solutions to enterprise customers. The positions, which are industry and region-specific, also show Apple’s plan for the upcoming expansion of its enterprise solutions for new industries including manufacturing and healthcare.  Read more

A double-edged sword: did the iPhone preserve RadioShack…or kill it?

radioshack-1991The day has finally come. It seems struggling electronics retailer RadioShack is finally dead. This doesn’t come as a surprise to anyone who has paid attention to the company at all in the past few years. The chain hasn’t turned a profit since 2011, and several attempts to reboot its image have failed miserably.

How RadioShack reached this point is also no surprise: it failed to keep up with the ever-evolving technology market, choosing instead to attempt to walk the line between DIY hobbyist and mainstream electronics.

While no one would argue that RadioShack’s insistence on keeping one foot in each world eventually led to its demise, it could also be argued that it’s exactly what kept the company around for so long.

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FiftyThree announces gold version of its popular ‘Pencil’ stylus for iPad

Pencil Gold

Earlier this month FiftyThree’s popular Pencil stylus for iPad joined the accessory lineup in Apple’s retail stores, and today FiftyThree is unveiling a new gold brushed and anodized finish variant of its Bluetooth stylus. FiftyThree’s Pencil Gold color matches that latest iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 3 which are both available in gold versions, while the new Pencil holds the same $59.95 price tag at the existing Walnut option.

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Apple’s Back to School sale returns to Australia and New Zealand w/ gift card promo

AU Apple Back to Uni

Apple’s annual Back to School sale in Australia and New Zealand has gone live with a promotion for qualifying students to receive Apple Store credit with the purchase of a Mac, iPad, or iPhone. Similar to last year, the Back to School sale includes the usual education pricing on Macs and iPads, but this year Apple is including Apple Store gift cards rather than App Store gift cards like last year. Read more

The Best iPhone 6 + iPhone 6 Plus Battery Cases

It’s a great time to buy an iPhone 6 battery case. Last year, there were zero Apple-certified options, but today, there are a handful of good to great choices at various price points. They may look similar to each other in the picture above, but the sea of black shells masks some important differences in iPhone protection, battery recharging capabilities, and pricing. One stands out as a particularly excellent combination for the iPhone 6, and we also have a good pick for the iPhone 6 Plus.

Which iPhone 6 battery case should you buy? The most recent update to this piece on February 23, 2015 added new options! Read on for all the details…

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