Tech Industry January 19

AAPL: 96.66

-0.47
Stock Chart

It’s easy to miss out on sports entertainment when you cut the cord and just rely on Apple TV, but ESPN president John Skipper tells The Wall Street Journal that may change in 2016. When asked about the potential streaming network Apple reportedly hopes to offer on its set-top box, the ESPN exec says that Apple has been “frustrated” with the process of building a service but that ESPN has been in past talks and continues to work with the company:

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Apple continues to talk high praise of Apple Music, most recently leaking that the service has 10 million paying subscribers, but it has remained somewhat quiet about its Beats 1 online 24/7 radio station. Beats 1 launched to much fanfare with Zane Lowe leading the effort, and while it seems to be doing decently, it isn’t a sensation in the music business yet. It’s especially timely to talk about Beats 1 now that Apple has retired the iTunes Radio ad-supported stations, leaving Beats 1 as the only way to get free streaming music from Apple. I’m intrigued by the uptake of the station — there’s a poll to find out how often you tune in below the break — as it seems Beats 1 has an awareness issue.

I tend to like the music that is played but I just forget to tune in. I think Beats 1 is good but Apple needs to support it better within iOS and iTunes to make it stickier. Here are some suggestions …

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The Super Bowl kicks off on February 7th at Levi’s Stadium, in close vicinity to the headquarters of major tech firms including Apple. Usually, the Super Bowl is funded by local government sponsorships. This year, tech companies are (at least partially) footing the bill. The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Apple has contributed free products and equipment to the host committee and has explicitly declined any company or product marketing in exchange. Apple joins other tech companies like Alphabet, Yahoo, Seagate and HP in funding the proceedings — the Super Bowl committee has raised about $50 million in total from these firms.

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Apple has finally managed to secure a sales ban over some Samsung phone features that infringe on its patents and intellectual property. However, the victory is effectively meaningless despite the milestone in its continuing patent litigation suit with Samsung in ever-longer court battles.

Apple’s ban resides over three features encumbered by its patents: the controversial ‘slide to unlock’ patent, predictive text technology and autocorrect. Getting a ban is a huge symbolic achievement, but the effect it will have on day-to-day business of the two companies is minor. The ban is effectively useless as FOSS Patents explains …

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CBC News is reporting that Apple would not disclose Apple ID passwords to a widow after presenting her late husband’s death certificates and her will. Instead, Apple demanded Peggy Bush, 72, to attain a court order in order to gain access to the account. See the video after the jump for the full story.

Initially, Apple said that a death certificate would suffice but the company changed its mind on followup calls, making this situation even more frustrating for Bush. She just wanted to play her iPad freemium card game in peace. Law regarding digital assets after death is murky, although Bush points out that death certificates enabled her to transfer pensions and benefits, making it seem ridiculous that Apple would also not cooperate with the same information.

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Tech Industry January 18

AAPL: 97.13

-2.39
Stock Chart

Apple has notified developers that App Store prices in Canada, Israel, Mexico, New Zealand, Russia, Singapore and South Africa are increasing. Customers in these regions will see prices for apps and in-app purchases rise within the next 72 hours. If you have a renewing subscription, Apple will notify you with an email about the price change ahead of the next subscription payment, although customers in Russia and South Africa will have to resubscribe manually.

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