Sony eyes Danny Boyle as Steve Jobs biopic director, Leonardo DiCaprio to star

DiCaprio and Boyle on the set of the 2000 film "The Beach"

DiCaprio and Boyle on the set of the 2000 film “The Beach”

With David Fincher recently rejected to direct the upcoming Steve Jobs biopic written by Aaron Sorkin, Sony may have found its replacement in Slumdog Millionaire director Danny Boyle, according to The Hollywood Reporter. And with the lead role still not cast, Sony is reportedly considering tapping Leonardo DiCaprio to play Steve Jobs.

The film was first announced by Sony in mid-2012. Screenwriter Sorkin later revealed that the movie would focus on Jobs’ preparations in the thirty minutes leading up to three key Apple keynotes—a much different approach last year’s Jobs, which starred Ashton Kutcher. There have not been many updates on the project’s progress until recently, with the announcement that Fincher (and his choice for lead actor, Christian Bale) would not be part of the production going forward.

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FuelBand and other hardware discontinued, development team fired as Nike seeks to exit wearable tech market

Nike + FuelBand

Nike has decided to get out of the wearable technology market entirely, according to a brand-new report from CNET. The company is said to have come to the conclusion that fitness software has a more stable future at the company, leading to the discontinuation of the FuelBand and other wearable fitness products and the firing of most of the 70 employees currently working in that division.

The move is interesting timing. Just a week ago, Nike launched Nike+Fuel Lab in San Francisco, a “new program to develop partnerships and products with NikeFuel” hundreds of miles south of its current location at its Oregon HQ.

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This announcement comes only weeks before Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference, where the company is expected to show off its upcoming Healthbook application as part of the next generation of iPhone software in anticipation of iWatch hardware coming later this year. Nike’s new strategy will put it more in line to compete with Healthbook as an application rather than the actual iWatch device.

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Amazon reportedly announcing first smartphone in June, will feature glasses-free 3D

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The Wall Street Journal reports that Amazon is planning to announce its first entry to the smartphone market in June. The possibility of an Amazon phone has been a long-running rumor, but recently sources claimed that the company had partnered with HTC to finally produce the device.

Following the launch of the Fire TV earlier this month, the Amazon phone will mark the second of Apple’s product categories the online retailer hopes to invade in 2014. With its Kindle Fire tablets, Amazon has been attempting to position itself to compete with the iPad for a few years.

The Amazon device will reportedly feature a display capable of creating 3D images without the need for glasses, according to the WSJ report:

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T-Mobile offering LTE iPads at WiFi-only prices, free data through 2014

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A day after it announced cheaper plans with voice and data, T-Mobile is sharing more interesting news of upcoming promotions. Starting April 12th, T-Mobile will begin offering iPads and other tablets with LTE at the price normally offered by WiFi-only tablets. For instance, an iPad Air with only WiFi normally runs $499, while an iPad with WiFi and LTE for connecting to the Internet from anywhere normally runs $629. T-Mobile’s promotion will offer new iPads with LTE for the cost of a WiFi-only model for a limited time (saving you $130 in the iPad’s case).

T-Mobile is also offering customers a free 1GB of data use for the rest of the year. The carrier announced last fall that it already includes 200MB of data for tablet customers and today’s announcement adds to that free data offering. After the 2014 promotion, the 1GB of data usage for tablets will be $10 a month while the 200MB of data will remain free. T-Mobile also announced some news for people using tablets with mobile data from other carriers… Read more

Microsoft’s Office for iPad team talks development process, Ballmer, and more during Reddit AMA

As Microsoft continues its Office for iPad marketing campaign, the team that developed the productivity software has taken to Reddit for an AMA, or Ask Me Anything, to answer questions and discuss the development process behind Word, Excel, and PowerPoint for iPad. By measure of upvotes, the most popular question as of the time of this writing asked when Office for iPad would gain the ability to print, something Apple’s iWork suite and many of apps already offer, to which the team replied “in due course” while noting the high demand of the feature.

But the team didn’t stop there; Microsoft’s Office for iPad team also shared photos of their lab (as seen in the above photo), talked about the development process for bringing Office to the iPad, and even addressed the notion that former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer held Office back from the iPad… Read more

Apple ranked well in Greenpeace’s ‘Green Internet’ report for its renewable energy efforts

As Business Insider points out, Apple’s renewable energy efforts have ranked it well on Greenpeace’s “Clicking Clean: How Companies are Creating the Green Internet” study. Apple scored an “A” rating in ‘energy transparency’, ‘renewable energy commitment & siting policy’, and ‘renewable energy deployment & advocacy’, while it scored a “B” in ‘energy efficiency & mitigation’. Facebook and Google both averaged well in the same categories, while Amazon, Microsoft, and Twitter all scored poor to dismal ratings in each category. Full report card below: Read more

BlackBerry wins injunction against Ryan Seacrest’s iPhone keyboard in patent dispute

typo-iphone-keyboard

The Typo iPhone case has been blocked from sale by BlackBerry, according to a report from Reuters. The smartphone maker sued over the design of the case earlier this year, saying that it infringed on several of the company’s patents and its “iconic” keyboard design. The case is designed to add a BlackBerry-like keyboard to the iPhone 5 and 5s.

The injunction blocks the sale of the Typo, which is made by a company co-founded by TV personality Ryan Seacrest. A San Fransisco federal judge ruled that BlackBerry had established a “likelihood” that the Typo case infringed on its patents, while the case maker was unable to prove that it had not.

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HTC unveils new One (M8) with dual-LED flash, Sense 6 software, Gunmetal design

HTC has just announced its 2014 flagship in New York. Dubbed the new HTC One (M8), the device is just as all the leaks have depicted it over the past few months. Most notably, HTC is touting the device’s high-quality metal construction, which it describes “like a premium watch.” (Remember when Jobs described the iPhone 4 as a “a beautiful old Leica camera”?) The device is  available in a new Gunmetal Gray Hairline Finish that makes it look significantly more high-end than its predecessor. Taking a page out of Apple’s book, the device features a dual LED flash on the back, much like the iPhone 5s.

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GE-backed Quirky Aros is a window air conditioner with Nest smarts, controlled by iPhone

Quirky Aros window a/c unit

Finally some much needed smart appliance love for those without central air conditioning (and it’ll keep you cool): the Quirky Aros. Backed by GE, the New York-based start-up Quirky has combined the traditional window A/C unit with some very modern technologies to create the Nest (smart thermostat) of window air conditioners at a particularly reasonable price. On the surface, the Aros is an 8,000 BTU window A/C unit (rated to cool 350 square feet) with an almost Apple-like exterior (it looks as good as any window A/C unit I could imagine). Throw in touch capacitive buttons, Wi-Fi, and an iPhone and Android app for adjusting remotely and you’ve got your smart window air conditioner. The smartphone app doesn’t just let you control the temperature remotely…

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Google releases ‘Android Wear’ SDK developer preview, watches from LG, Moto & others due next quarter

silver_metal_600_00010Ahead of the release of Apple’s much rumored “iWatch” wearable product, Google has now officially announced Android’s entrance into wearables with project “Android Wear.” The Android Wear SDK allows developers to integrate a number of features into Android powered wearables and relies heavily on Google Now functionality, as we were first to report late last year.

Google also confirmed that it’s working with a handful of partners to bring Android Wear powered wearables to market by later this year: Read more

Former VP of marketing at Apple talks iPhone, Steve Jobs, and more at the 99U conference

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Apple’s former Vice President of Marketing Allison Johnson talked about her time at Apple during the 99U conference, as reported by Cult of Mac. Johnson now works with companies like Jawbone and Anki.

In the video, Johnson discusses her time working with Steve Jobs, including his response to the iPhone 4 “antenna-gate” issue. Johnson describe’s Jobs as being “so sad and so angry” about the problem, declaring that Apple would not be the kind of company that people regarded negatively.

She also talks about her role (and Jobs’) in marketing the original iPhone and other key events in the six years she was in charge of the company’s marketing.

The full twenty-five minute interview is included below:

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