Future of iPad: Dual-app viewing mode, then J98/J99 ‘iPad Pros,’ multi-user support

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Facing slowing growth for the first time since the iPad’s 2010 debut, Apple is working on several significant software and hardware updates to reinvigorate the tablet over the next year. Apple is developing a dual-app viewing mode, 12-inch iPads codenamed “J98″ and “J99,” as well as support for multi-user logins, according to sources briefed on the plans. First planned for debut last year, the split-screen applications feature for the iPad could be introduced as soon as June at Apple’s annual Worldwide Developers Conference, while multi-user login support and the 12-inch iPads will apparently arrive later…

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Happy Hour Podcast 015 | Refreshed Macs, Apple Watch update, and the end of Apple’s rumored TV plans

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Apple has slightly refreshed the 15-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display, added a more affordable Retina 5K iMac, and an iPhone related surprise. Along with that, we have a new Watch OS update and sad news about Apple’s rumored TV plans. The Happy Hour podcast is available for download on iTunes and through our dedicated RSS feed…

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KGI lowers Apple Watch forecast significantly, says over 80% of sales are larger 42mm version

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A new KGI research note predicts that production of the Apple Watch’s Taptic Engine component will begin to improve later this month, but slow demand has led to a downward revision of estimated shipments by 20-30%. The new estimate comes in at 5-6 million units shipped in the third quarter.

Combining that estimate with the data from last quarter has caused KGI to cut its annual shipment estimate in half. Where the general consensus previously predicted that Apple should ship 20-30 million smartwatches, the firm’s new number comes in at under 15 million.

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Olloclip unveils new iPhone 6/6 Plus Active Lens, an ultra-wide + 2x optical zoom telephoto lens combo

Shortly after announcing its lens accessory-compatible Ollocase for iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, the popular Olloclip lens maker is out with a new Action Lens for the 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch iPhones. Olloclip Action Lens combines an ultra-wide lens for capturing action shots with a telephoto lens that adds 2x optical zoom to the iPhone camera. Using Action Lens with an iPhone 6 or 6 Plus, you can create shots like these: Read more

Some waiting for iMacs have been given a free upgrade to Retina, but is that a good deal?

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A Redditor awaiting delivery of a non-Retina 27-inch iMac ordered before yesterday’s announcement of the new Retina models has reported being given a free upgrade by Apple.

You may not have heard, but we just announced the new iMac with Retina 5K display. Since your order has yet to ship, we automatically upgraded you to the new iMac with Retina 5K display.

Since the old price of the non-Retina model he’d ordered and the new base-model Retina machine are the same – $1999 – it’s likely that Apple has offered the same deal to others in the same position. But is this necessarily a good deal … ?  Read more

Review: Apple’s iPhone Lightning Dock plays nice with iPhones, cases, and even iPads

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Four years ago, I wondered why Apple sold such seemingly simple plastic docks for $29, so I cut two of them in half to see what was inside. I was impressed: in addition to a larger-than-expected collection of electronic components, they were filled with substantial zinc plates that kept Apple’s devices standing safely upright, no easy feat since the docks kept shrinking every year. The only problem: most (but not all) of Apple’s docks have been model-specific and case-unfriendly, issues that were particularly pronounced in the official iPhone 5s Dock and iPhone 5c Dock. When Twelve South released the handsome multi-device and case-compatible HiRise and HiRise Deluxe, many people — including me — had no need for a more limited, Apple-designed alternative.

Somewhat belatedly, Apple has just released the iPhone Lightning Dock ($39), its first docking solution for the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus. It’s not clear why Apple took its time releasing this accessory, which uncharacteristically has a 2014 date on the back of its box. But it’s the dock Apple should have released three years ago, delivering case compatibility, multi-device support, and the expected Apple minimalism. It has no back support for your iPhone, instead relying on a stiffened and modestly padded Lightning connector to hold your device on the traditional Apple light recline. And it also includes an audio-out port, which has been absent from all of its third-party rivals. Now that Apple has released the right sort of dock, should you consider buying one?…

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Review: Dotti & Notti, fun (if pointless) ways to receive notifications

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My conclusion in my Skeptic’s Apple Watch diary series was that the device didn’t really have a unique selling-point to me, but was a slightly more convenient way to receive notifications. Ultimately, though, I kept it because it was a cool gadget.

The same argument, I think, would have to be deployed to justify what are really a couple of fun toys that happen to alert you to notifications: Dotti and Notti …  Read more

Microsoft working on a new Email/IM app for the iPhone, ‘Flow by Outlook’

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Microsoft appears to be working on a new instant messaging app for the iPhone, acting as a kind of cross between email and instant messaging, known as Flow by Outlook. The download page, which describes the project as ‘Microsoft Confidential,’ was first spotted by @h0x0d (via ZDNet).

Use Flow with anyone, it’s email: Reach anyone with an email address and all conversations for you and others are also in Outlook. Together, you can use Flow and Outlook interchangeably to participate in the same conversations.

Fast, fluid, natural conversations: No subject lines, salutations, or signatures. Flow is designed for fast, light-weight conversations in real time.

Focus on what’s important: Only conversations started in Flow and their replies show up in Flow, not your whole inbox. Focus on your most important person-to-person conversations without the noise.

While the webpage describing the app is unprotected, the actual download link requires a login…
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PCalc brings its calculator app to Apple Watch w/ Glance & Send to iPhone feature

TLA Systems has brought is popular calculator app to the Apple Watch today through the latest version of PCalc for iPhone. The PCalc Apple Watch app features a fully functional calculator for quickly crunching numbers from your watch — 1985 Casio-style like the similar Calcbot app — and similarly features a clever tip calculator that makes splitting the bill a cinch.  Read more

Google adds real-time tweets to mobile web and iOS app search results

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Following up on Google’s agreement with Twitter to instantly add tweets to web search results, the duo announced today that users on mobile devices will start seeing real-time Twitter results as well. The feature is available in the Google app on iOS or Google’s mobile website, and is expected to make its way to the desktop soon.

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How-To: Install Watch OS updates on your Apple Watch

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The Apple Watch received its first official software update today, giving lucky early adopters their first opportunity to see how the Watch OS updating process works. Unlike the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch, which can update themselves using iOS’s Software Update feature, the Apple Watch depends upon an iPhone to download the update from Apple’s servers and install it on the Watch. You’ll also need a Wi-Fi network, your Apple Watch charger, and at least 50% battery life in order to do the update.

Here are the full details…

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Tim Cook: Apple Watch in stores ‘by June’, in talks for Apple Pay in China

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During his trip last week across China, Apple CEO Tim Cook held a meeting at Apple’s China headquarters with several employees in attendance, according to sources with knowledge of the briefing. Cook reportedly reiterated several recent China-focused announcements, including the new forest-focused environmental initiatives and improvements for education, but he also mentioned some new tidbits regarding the upcoming retail launch for the Apple Watch and the rollout of Apple Pay for China…

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