Reading Roundup: Everything to know (so far) about iOS 9 and OS X 10.11

Over the past week, we’ve published several articles detailing the future of iOS (the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch’s operating system), OS X (the Mac’s operating system), and Watch OS (the software that runs on the Apple Watch). With the long weekend ahead, we’ve decided to put together a roundup of all of our published stories on these topics…

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WatchDots let you customize Apple Watch w/ $10 decals for Digital Crown & button (Giveaway)

Apple-WatchDots-Hero

WatchDots is an upcoming product that lets you add a new level of customization to your Apple Watch by adding decals that match the color of your Watch and band.

Apple already includes a colored accent on the Digital Crown of some models (black on stainless steel models and other colors to match bands on the gold Edition models), but WatchDots lets you customize the Digital Crown and the Watch’s singular button in a variety of colors on any model.  Read more

Apple Store evacuated after employees fall ill, hazmat teams investigate suspicious package

An Apple Store in Monterey, California was evacuated yesterday as employees began to fall ill reportedly due to a package delivered to the location covered with an unknown substance. CBS reports that “fire and hazmat officials determined the package was contaminated in transit when an unknown substance most likely leaked onto the package’s exterior.” Read more

Apple voices objection in RadioShack bankruptcy over customer data sale

RadioShack close

Apple recently voiced concerns over the potential sale of its customer data as part of RadioShack’s bankruptcy filing. As an authorized reseller of Apple’s products, RadioShack is sitting on a collection of customer data of Apple product owners. According to Law360, Apple has formally objected to any data on its product sales through RadioShack being made available for sale citing the reseller agreement between the two companies and its interest of protecting personal data. Read more

Hundreds of dollars being stolen from Starbucks app users – weak/duplicated passwords blamed

starbucks

Starbucks has confirmed multiple reports of users of its smartphone app having three-figure sums stolen from their accounts in the form of gift certificates, reports CNN.

One user lost $550 in a matter of minutes, his account auto-reloaded each time it was emptied by a hacker sending a series of $50 gift cards. Other users have also reported three-figure losses within a matter of seconds or minutes …  Read more

UBS matches KGI’s upbeat forecast for Q2 iPhone sales of 51M, well above consensus

iphone

UBS has matched the upbeat iPhone forecast made last month by KGI for Q2 (Apple’s fiscal Q3), both analysts estimating sales of 51M – well above the consensus expectation of 45M.

KGI’s Ming-Chi Kuo predicts 51.4M, saying that while he believes iPhone sales have peaked, demand will remain higher than the normal seasonal pattern. UBS forecast 51.1M, noting that Apple’s “continued surge” in China is a key factor, where the premium market remains strong despite reports of the country approaching saturation point in smartphones.

Both analysts have strong track-records, Ming-Chi Kuo being our go-to guy for supply-chain rumors, and UBS producing a graph to show the accuracy of its past predictions (below) …  Read more

Thieves can bypass Apple Watch passcode to pair a stolen watch with their own phone

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Wrist-detection on the Apple Watch is supposed to ensure that it will ask for the passcode if removed from your wrist, but as a YouTube video posted by iDownloadBlog demonstrates, a thief is able to reset the watch without having to enter the passcode. They are then free to pair it with any other iPhone.

iPhones are protected by Activation Lock, which means that even if a thief performs a hard reset of the phone, it cannot be reactivated without the original owner’s Apple ID and password. The Apple Watch, however, has no such protection, and does not require a passcode to wipe it – as shown in the video below …  Read more

Rdio plans new $3.99/mo streaming tier ahead of Apple Music launch next month

Beats Studio Wireless

Update: Rdio officially announced the new plan today.

Apple is slated to launch its streaming music service next month, but Rdio is trying to cut off a portion of Apple’s market with a new service. BuzzFeed News reports that Rdio plans to introduce a $3.99 a month streaming music service. The service, called Rdio Select, will be significantly limited, which is to be expected given the low price point…

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‘Apple Music’ Beats-based streaming service to have Ping-like social network for artists

ping

Apple’s upcoming Beats-based streaming music service will likely be named “Apple Music” and will have deep social networking integration for artists, according to industry sources briefed on the plans for the new service.

Taking a page out of the discontinued iTunes Ping feature from earlier this decade, the service will allow artists to have their own pages within the streaming music service that they can use to post track samples, photos, videos, and concert updates.

Artists will also be able to share the content of other artists in an effort of cross-promotion. For example, all-gold Apple Watch wearer Kanye West could promote a new album from Taylor Swift on his “Apple Music” artist page, if he so chooses…

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Tesla hires head Apple recruiter after losing own recruiter to Apple Car team

Tesla has taken its recruiting of Apple employees to the next level: the electric car and energy company has hired away Apple’s Senior Director of Corporate Recruiting, Cindy Nicola, to become Tesla’s new Vice President of Global Recruiting. Nicola has already noted her new role and start month of May on her LinkedIn profile.

Notably, Apple actually hired away Tesla’s Lead Recruiter in 2014 for its own electric car project, as we noted in our extensive profile of Apple’s automotive related hires. Interestingly, that former Tesla recruiter Lauren Ciminera has already left Apple to work on a new “confidential” project, according to her own LinkedIn page and confirmation from a source…

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Opinion: One month later, fixing 15 early Apple Watch problems seems straightforward

applewatch-0

The Apple Watch had a rough launch: atypically critical reviews, extended shipping delays, and public skepticism surpassing the launches of the iPhone and iPad. But as I write these words, Apple is just beginning next-day shipments of the first Modern Buckle, Leather Loop, and Space Black Stainless Steel Apple Watches, which means that tomorrow will be the first day when the entire Apple Watch lineup is actually in (or on) consumers’ hands.

Since a month has passed since pre-orders opened, I wanted to revisit an article we published in early April — a summary of 15 user experience problems revealed by early Apple Watch reviewers. When the article was published, some people accused the reviewers of bias, but others saw the issues they identified as legitimate. Now that the “new product” dust has had ample time to settle, this follow-up article asks two questions: first, did each of the issues turn out to be real? Second, if each issue was legitimate, how should Apple solve it, if it hasn’t been solved already? The answers are actually worth discussing… 

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