Apple maintains lead over Samsung as top tablet vendor in Q2 as both lose share to others

IDC-Tablet-shipments-Q2

With Apple’s Q3 earnings call this week revealing iPad sales of 13.3 million units for the quarter and Tim Cook making a point of defending the category, today we get a look at how Apple is doing overall with IDC’s latest numbers for worldwide tablet shipments.

While noting that tablet shipments worldwide grew 11% year-over-year, IDC’s numbers show that Apple was able to maintain its lead over Samsung with 26.9% of the market (down from 33% last year) compared to Samsung at 17.2% down from 18.8% the year before. Both lose share to other companies as the category reportedly experienced a lot of growth among smaller companies like Lenovo and Acer while the “others” category grew from 37% to 44% marketshare: Read more

Square gets automation-savvy with new IFTTT channel

The mobile payment service Square is getting even smarter thanks to the automation service If This Then That. An entirely new set of possibilities for features that will benefit merchants and mobile payment customers has been unlocked thanks to Square integration with If This Then That, or IFTTT, through a dedicated Square channel on the popular automation service. At the time of launch, a total of 78 other channels supported by IFTTT can be connected to the mobile payment service’s channel and triggered by sales, refund, and settlement data from Square… Read more

Pixite’s new 3D photo editing app Matter debuts on iPhone and iPad

Pixite is out today with a new photo editing app for iPhone and iPad called Matter. The app allows you to embed and manipulate 3D objects in your photography or photos from others to give your photos an impressive science fiction effect. This is achieved by Matter’s ability to intelligently apply shadows and reflections that match your photography to its library of 3D objects. You can see examples of images edited in Matter above and more details about the photo editing app below… Read more

‘The iPhone 6 Effect’ helping boost Asian economies by as much as 8.6 percent, say analysts

components

Component orders by Apple for the iPhone 6 are a significant factor in the current thriving state of a number of Asian economies, say analysts and government officials cited by the WSJ.

Analysts expect companies from Taiwan, Japan and South Korea that supplied earlier versions of the iPhone to produce key components like displays, camera lenses and microprocessors. Already, some of those companies are announcing increased earnings or forecasts, and economists and analysts are talking about an Apple effect on whole sectors and economies …

Read more

Spurious claim Apple will release 4.7- and 5.5-inch iPhones separately ‘to avoid competition’

render

Supply-chain rumors are can be unreliable sources at the best of times, but never more so than when they claim to offer insight into Apple’s strategic plans. DigiTimes is claiming that Apple will be launching the 4.7- and 5.5-inch models of the iPhone 6 separately “to avoid competition between the two models.”

The different timetables have been set as Apple does not want to repeat the mistake it made in 2013 when it launched the iPhone 5s and iPhone 5c simultaneously, said the sources.

Let’s take this one step at a time. First, what companies in the supply-chain know are how many orders have been placed with them for specific components. They don’t know what orders Apple may have placed with other suppliers for the same components, and they don’t even necessarily know in which product the parts will be used …  Read more

Apple seeds Safari 7.1 and 6.2 beta 2 to developers, asks developers to test password and credit card autofill

Screen Shot 2014-07-24 at 1.09.56 AM

Earlier this month Apple seeded the first beta versions of Safari 7.1 (for Mavericks) and 6.2 (for Mountain Lion) to developers. Tonight a second beta has been published. Interestingly, aside from the focus areas outlined with the previous beta, Apple is also requesting that developers taking this beta for a spin try out the password and credit card auto-fill feature.

The 7.1 and 6.2 updates are expected to be the last big updates to those specific versions of Apple’s browser before the release of OS X Yosemite, which ships with Safari 8. The 7.1/6.2 update features big changes to the WebKit engine and extensions systems built into Safari. You can find the full seed notes for this beta below:

Read more

Apple announces August 2nd opening of Wuxi, China retail store

Center-66-4-ec1b-611

Apple has officially announced plans to open its new Wuxi, China retail store on August 2nd, according to a listing on the company’s website.

The new establishment, which will be the 12th official Apple retail store in the country, will be located in the Center 66 Mall (pictured above). However, there don’t seem to be any photos of Apple’s new space available just yet, as the company still undoubtedly has some work to do before it’s ready for the public eye.

The Wuxi store, like the Chongqing store opening next week, is a continuation of Apple’s plan to increase its presence in China over the course of 2014 and 2015 under the guidance of new VP of Retail Angela Ahrednts.

Read more

Report claims Swatch and Timex partnering up on iWatch, but don’t count on it (Update: Swatch denies)

Screen Shot 2014-07-23 at 4.20.34 PM

Swatch’s design style clearly reflects Apple’s clean, uncluttered aesthetic

Update: Swatch has denied the claim, in a statement to Reuters.

A new rumor that popped up today from VentureBeat claims that Apple is working with Swatch and Timex to create different styles of its upcoming iWatch. The rumor puts Apple’s wearable plans in-line with Google’s: the Mountain View company makes the Android Wear software that powers hardware from a variety of vendors.

While it’s true that Swatch teamed up with Microsoft to create an ill-fated smart watch in 2004, it doesn’t seem likely that Apple is poised to join forces with any third party to create its own entry to this market. Here’s why…

Read more

Review: Gravitas from Henge Docks is a premium dock that ‘stays put’…almost (Video)

gravitas-dock-review

I don’t understand why Apple doesn’t sell a premium dock for iOS devices. There’s such an attention to detail when it comes to product design at Apple, yet they continue to sell a dinky plastic dock for select devices. I’ve never been a fan of these plastic docks and have been in search of something with a little more class for a while now.

Recently, I came across Gravitas from Henge Docks. This is a weighted dock crafted from zinc alloy that has interchangeable inserts for all of my iOS devices. It’s also advertised as having the ability to “stay put” when undocking your device thanks to the hefty 2.5lbs of weight it’s packing. This is definitely one of the best docks I’ve used, but it does have a few shortcomings…

Read more

Apple reportedly discussing mobile wallet plans with credit card companies, may launch with iPhone 6

touchid

The Information has a new report out discussing Apple’s progress on a mobile wallet payments service. The post echoes reporting by 9to5Mac earlier in the year.

The report says the service may launch this fall, enabling iPhone users to pay for goods with their devices in retail outlets. Apple has apparently discussed the plans with credit card institutions, according to the report, as a user’s banking information “would essentially be uploaded to the wallet”. Apparently, Visa is already onboard with the project.

Read more

OS X Yosemite planned for late Oct. as Apple preps 4K desktop & 12-inch Retina MacBook

macs

While iOS 8 for the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch is set for a September launch, Apple is planning to bring its next-generation Mac software, OS X Yosemite, into the wild a month later, in October, according to several sources. Apple plans to continue releasing OS X Yosemite Developer Previews every two to three weeks until a final Developer Preview is seeded on September 29th, according to the people. Apple is then expected to finish up work on Yosemite in early October and release a golden master build around October 10th, the sources said. Apple is also finishing up preparations to release a version of OS X Yosemite beta tomorrow to the first one million people who signed up for the public beta.

Read more

Apple ‘tentatively’ plans mid-September iPhone event as iOS 8 nears completion

iPhone 6

Apple is gearing up for its first major hardware and software launches of 2014. The Cupertino-based company is “tentatively” planning a keynote address in mid-September to announce the iPhone 6 and provide final details on iOS 8, according to sources briefed on the plans.

These people say that the second and third weeks of September are the mostly likely weeks for the event to be held, but they add that manufacturing uncertainties could alter the event’s timeframe. A decision has not been finalized, and sources made it clear that the plans are in flux.

The event will showcase at least the new iPhone 6 with a 4.7-inch screen, the sources say, but a final decision on debuting the larger, 5.5-inch “phablet” model at the event has not been made. The 4.7-inch variant of the new phone is farther along in both internal testing and manufacturing preparation, the sources added.

Read more