Hands-on: Fantastical 2.1 for iPhone & iPad adds snooze, invitation/birthday notifications, keyboard shortcuts, more

We’ve already taken a close look at Fantastical 2 for iPhone and Fantastical 2 for iPad, and today Flexibits is releasing Fantastical 2.1 for both platforms with a list of new features and discounting Fantastical for iPhone, iPad, and Mac. Among the list of changes include new snooze functionality, event invitation notifications and badges, notifications for upcoming birthdays, external keyboard shortcut support, and more. Below we’ll take a look at each new feature added to Fantastical for iPhone and iPad… Read more

Apple releasing OS X Yosemite public preview tomorrow for free Beta Program members

yosemite beta

As we reported earlier this week, Apple has shared that it will open the public beta version of OS X Yosemite tomorrow, July 24th, for users wanting to preview the upcoming version of the Mac operating system ahead of its release targeted for this fall. Users can sign up to be an OS X Beta Program member on Apple’s Beta Program site.

Apple says the OS X Yosemite beta will be updated less frequently for the OS X Beta Program than the version via the OS X Developer Program, but users running the public beta of OS X Yosemite will be able to install the final release of OS X Yosemite over the beta version when it’s readied for release in the fall. The beta version available to OS X Beta Program members will also allow users to easily submit feedback for issues with the Mac operating system ahead of its official public debut. Read more

FiftyThree launches SDK to bring its ‘Pencil’ Bluetooth stylus to other iOS apps

FiftyThree, the developers behind the popular drawing app Paper, today announced it’s releasing an SDK that will let all developers take advantage of its Pencil stylus for iOS devices. First launched last year alongside an update to Paper, Pencil is a $60 Bluetooth stylus for the drawing app that aims to offer a realistic pencil-to-paper drawing experience.

The SDK will allow for a smooth experience with the Pencil stylus in other apps and that also means in some cases FiftyThree will be working to improve the apps of its direct competitors while hopefully selling its stylus as a platform in the process. Devs will get access to palm rejection, erase, easy pairing, and all the pencil and touch classifiers the company uses in the Paper app. Support for surface pressure is also arriving with iOS 8: Read more

First look at Fleksy’s upcoming keyboard launching alongside iOS 8

In addition to launching a redesigned version on Android, Fleksy today has given us a first look at its upcoming keyboard offering for Apple’s iOS 8. iOS 8 launches this fall with several new iPad, iPhone, and iPod touch features, including the ability for developers to launch custom system-wide keyboards. Fleksy previously announced that it is working on a keyboard for iOS 8 and has opened up signups for a beta, but today the company provided us with the first images and some new details…

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Apple’s gross margins are the key takeaway from yesterday’s results, say analysts

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While Wall Street may have been slightly disappointed by some of the numbers Apple reported yesterday, they should feel reassured by Apple stabilising and growing its gross margins, say Apple bulls – analysts who expect the stock price to rise.

Business Insider noted the above chart tweeted by Benedict Evans with the commentary:

Very stable long-term gross margins. Painful contrast to rest of the industry …

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Apple outlines iOS diagnostics capabilities in response to backdoor data breach claims

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Earlier this week, Apple denied claims that it had hidden secret backdoors in its iOS platform that could allow the government or malicious users to extract a variety of critical and personal details about a device’s user from an iPhone or iPad, sometimes storing that data in unencrypted formats.

Today, the company published a new document on its support website explaining the diagnostic tools that iOS uses to collect data for troubleshooting and other purposes. According to the document:

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iOS 8 & OS X Yosemite said to launch separately despite tight integration

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Even though Apple will begin integrating iOS and OS X in new, mutually beneficial ways with iOS 8 and OS X Yosemite, Apple currently plans to stagger the releases of the two operating systems, according to people briefed on the plans. iOS 8 will launch in September alongside the iPhone 6, and OS X Yosemite will launch approximately a month later, in October, according to the sources…

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Apple & AT&T begin sending $40 checks to original 3G iPad buyers

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Apple and U.S.-based wireless carrier AT&T have begun sending out $40 checks to buyers of the original iPad WiFi + 3G in the United States over a “bait-and-switch” regarding the device’s data plan. The backstory is that when Steve Jobs announced the 3G iPad in January 2010, he announced a deal with AT&T for a $30/month unlimited iPad data plan.

When the 3G iPad launched in late April 2010, this plan was available, but AT&T eliminated the plan just about one month later in early June 2010. Lawsuits followed in the months and years following the shift in data plan strategy claimed that customers overpaid for the 3G iPad believing that they would be able to use the device to access unlimited amounts of data.

In September 2013, Apple and AT&T settled and agreed to pay $40 to each affected iPad buyer. For iPad buyers who had not yet purchased an unlimited data plan, a discount on the replacing 5GB plan was offered. The two companies began sending the checks out late last week, and they began arriving today. You can view the entire check stub and letter from the payout fund below:

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Apple faces off against 20,000 employees in class action lawsuit over labor code violations

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A group of corporate and retail employees has received class action status for a lawsuit against Apple in which the plaintiffs argue that the company violated the California labor code by not offering “timely meal breaks, timely rest breaks, and timely final paychecks,” per a report from TechCrunch.

The suit was originally filed in December 2011, but was today expanded to cover around 20,000 current and former Apple employees in California. The employees named in the suit have varying reasons for joining forces against Apple, but all accusations boil down to Apple having violated several points of the state’s labor laws.

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Tim Cook says Apple is ‘bullish about future tablet market’, now at 13M iPads into education worldwide

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During Apple’s earnings call today for its fiscal Q3, the company shared an update on iPad sales into the education market noting that it’s now up to 13 million iPads sold worldwide. That’s up from the 8 million units worldwide it reported in February of last year meaning the company sold 5 million iPads into education in just over a year. Apple last year noted that it also sold 4.5M iPads into the U.S. education market. This year, the company said it currently has 85% share of the US education tablet market. Read more

Live blog: Apple’s Q3 2014 earnings call

Apple Q3 Live blog earnings call

As we mentioned last month, Apple will today host its quarterly conference call to discuss its earnings report from the third quarter of its fiscal year: this includes 35.2 million iPhones, 13.2 million iPads, 2.9 million iPods, and 4.4 million Macs. Apple reported today that it earned $37.4 billion in revenue during its Q3 period.

This will be the first quarterly conference call with analysts and investors since Apple announced its plans to acquire Beats Electronics and Beats Music in a $3 billion deal that it expects to clear regulatory approval by the end of the current quarter in September. Today’s call also will be the first since Apple’s developer conference in June as well as Apple’s announced partnership with IBM to bolster the iPhone and iPad effort in the enterprise. It also marks Luca Maestri’s first call as CFO since Peter Oppenheimer’s retirement, although Maestri has been present on past calls.

Investors and analysts will surely focus on Apple’s new product plans for the remainder of this year, though, and we’ll be listening to bring you coverage starting at 5pm EST/ 2pm PST. Read more

Apple announces Q3 2014 revenue of $37.4b: 35.2m iPhones, 13.2m iPads, 4.4m Macs

Apple Q3 Live blog earnings call

Apple today announced its Q3 2014 earnings results, revealing that the company pulled in $37.4 billion in revenue and $7.7 billion in profit during the quarter.

Apple® today announced financial results for its fiscal 2014 third quarter ended June 28, 2014. The Company posted quarterly revenue of $37.4 billion and quarterly net profit of $7.7 billion, or $1.28 per diluted share. These results compare to revenue of $35.3 billion and net profit of $6.9 billion, or $1.07 per diluted share, in the year-ago quarter. Gross margin was 39.4 percent compared to 36.9 percent in the year-ago quarter. International sales accounted for 59 percent of the quarter’s revenue.

Apple, as always, has also disclosed sales numbers for its main revenue generators. The company sold:

  • 35.2 million iPhones
  • 13.2 million iPads
  • 4.4 million Macs
  • 2.9 million iPods

Apple’s guidance for the quarter indicated revenue results between $36 and $38 billion, which Apple met.

Here’s Apple CEO Tim Cook on the results:

“Our record June quarter revenue was fueled by strong sales of iPhone and Mac and the continued growth of revenue from the Apple ecosystem, driving our highest EPS growth rate in seven quarters,” said Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO. “We are incredibly excited about the upcoming releases of iOS 8 and OS X Yosemite, as well as other new products and services that we can’t wait to introduce.”

Here’s newly instated CFO Luca Maestri with his thoughts:

“We generated $10.3 billion in cash flow from operations and returned over $8 billion in cash to shareholders through dividends and share repurchases during the June quarter,” said Luca Maestri, Apple’s CFO. “We have now taken action on over $74 billion of our $130 billion capital return program with six quarters remaining to its completion.”

Apple’s Q3 has been relatively quiet in terms of new product announcements, but the Cupertino-company did announce major moves such as the impending acquisition of Beats Electronics and Beats Music along with an expansive future partnership with IBM for enterprise-related initiatives.

These numbers compare to last quarter’s results of $45.6 billion in revenue and sales of 43.7 million iPhones, 16.3 million iPads, and 4.1 million Macs. You can also compare today’s numbers to analyst expectations from before the announcement. Apple is also holding a conference call today at 2 PM Pacific/5 PM Eastern time, which we will be covering live. Cook and Maestri will likely share prepared remarks and then take a series of questions at the end from financial analysts.

For Q4 2014, Apple is providing guidance between $37 billion and $40 billion. The full Q3 earnings results release is below:

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