9to5Mac’s biggest stories of 2013: ‘All the leaks were…’

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Just like in 2011 and 2012, 2013 was an exciting year for 9to5Mac in terms of leaks, exclusive stories, and breaking news. This year was interesting however because there was considerable doubt cast at many of the stories we’d broke which added some entertainment into the mix. Below, we break down our biggest stories of the year by product type:

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Review + Giveaway: Abstergo jailbreak tweak finally fixes iOS notifications

When Apple introduced Notification Center in iOS 5, they changed the way most people manage notification on their iOS devices. For the most part, they were right. Unfortunately, Notification Center introduced its own deficiencies and now people are looking for changes once again.

Today, change has finally come in the form of a jailbreak tweak called Abstergo, and we’ve got five free copies for our readers. Keep reading for a full breakdown of the tweak and more information about how you can win a copy.

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Budget iPhone rear shell leaked?

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Could this be the rear case of the long-rumored low-cost iPhone? Tactus (via Macrumors) thinks so.

While Tactus doesn’t have a notable track-record in such leaks, the design does appear reasonably consistent with the majority of rumors so far. It’s a plastic shell, similar dimensions to the iPhone 4 but a little thicker as you’d expect with a polycarbonate casing.

Tactus also claims to have some details of the phone’s spec:

I’ve also heard on the grapevine that the alleged budget iPhone will have an A5 processor like the iPad Mini with a 32nm diecast. It’s also rumoured it will have a 3.5 inch retina screen, much like the 4S, but not as big as the iPhone 5 … I’ve also discovered the factory producing this secretive project have confirmed the device will be available in Black, White, Blue, Red and Yellow

Real or not real? Let us know your view

Verizon unveils 1 year “Device Payment Plan” for yearly updaters, moves full subsidies to 24 months

Verizon announced a few notable changes this week, possibly in response to T-Mobile’s new ‘Uncarrier’ pricing structure.

The first change enforces 24-month contracts and restricts subsidized upgrades during that period. Customers will no longer enjoy ‘early upgrades’ after 20-months, as was previously the policy.

While the change may disappoint customers who enjoyed upgrading their devices more frequently, Verizon told The Verge that a new “Device Payment Plan” will be accompany the policy changes.

The new payment plan allows customers to upgrade their smartphone annually by paying the upgrade fee at the register and dividing the rest of the full-retail price over 12 months. This payment plan will include a $2/month finance charge through the duration of the year.

For people like us who update annually, this option is a more pragmatic approach, especially when vendors like Gazelle (as well as others) typically pay more than the subsidized cost of a new smartphone for last year’s smartphone.

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