Apple shares behind-the-scenes video of its holiday ad “The Song”

Apple has shared a behind-the-scenes video that tells the story of its widely praised holiday ad named “The Song” that it released on Sunday.

Whether it’s making a record in a booth for someone thousands of miles away, or a song in GarageBand for someone you love, it’s not just the tools that count, it’s the thought behind the gift.

The latest clip, titled ‘The story behind “The Song”’, features musician Dana Williams (iTunes) and vocalist Rhiannon Giddens (iTunes) from the holiday ad as well as several people from Third Man Records where part of the vintage vocals were recorded. Read more

Apple shares updated aerial shot of Campus 2 construction progress

Apple-Campus-2-Aerial-Dec-14

Apple today shared an updated official aerial shot of its under construction Campus 2 project through the City of Cupertino’s website. 

The new shot gives a different angle since the last time Apple checked in late last month and shows more of the earthwork and greenery of the surrounding campus.

Apple’s General Project Schedule posted on the City of Cupertino’s webpage tracking the project remains the same, however, with street utilities and demolition work expected to finish this year, earthwork continuing into early 2015, and building construction into late 2016: Read more

Gartner: iPhone sees growth while Samsung continues to slow, Apple to have record Q4

iPhone 6

Gartner today published its third quarter numbers, showing overall growth in the smartphone market and a strong quarter for Apple. Mobile devices overall saw as many as 456 million sold with smartphones taking a 301 million slice of that pie, which comes out to a solid 66% (up 20% from last year). This shift in the market seems to be hurting Samsung and Nokia the most, because while the Korean giant is still leading the pack, this year smaller companies with slimmer margins seem to be taking some of its foothold.

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9to5 Guide: The best iPad, iPhone + MacBook battery cases/packs

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Earlier this week, I walked through a great collection of iPad, iPhone, and Mac products that I’d strongly recommend. Today, I’m here to help you choose an excellent spare battery for any portable Apple device. You can trust me because I’ve been testing Apple batteries for over a decade, conducting hours-long tests to learn how each new Apple device consumes power, and how quickly each battery replenishes a given device. If you want to learn more about why I’m recommending the specific batteries below, I discuss key factors worth considering at the bottom of this guide.

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Apple & IBM announce first batch of MobileFirst iOS apps for enterprise

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Following an announcement earlier this year that Apple was teaming up with IBM to deliver a number of enterprise solutions, today Apple has officially announced the first wave of iOS apps being released through the partnership. As part of IBM’s “MobileFirst for iOS,” Apple and IBM today announced 10 new apps designed specifically for businesses including banking, retail, insurance, financial services, telecommunications and for governments and airlines.

“This is a big step for iPhone and iPad in the enterprise, and we can’t wait to see the exciting new ways organizations will put iOS devices to work,” said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing. “The business world has gone mobile, and Apple and IBM are bringing together the world’s best technology with the smartest data and analytics to help businesses redefine how work gets done.”

The apps launching today through the partnership include Plan Flight and Passenger+ for the travel industry, Advise & Grow and Trusted Advice for the banking and financial industries, Retention (insurance), Case Advice and Incident Aware for government, Sales Assist and Pick & Pack for retail, and Expert Tech for telecommunications industries. Apple notes that the apps offer customizable experiences and are “managed and upgraded via cloud services from IBM specifically for iOS devices.”

In addition to the new apps, which Apple described in more detail in its press release below, Apple noted other services that will go hand-in-hand with the apps. Those include integration with IBM’s Mobile Platform and Enterprise solutions as well as AppleCare for the Enterprise, Apple’s new business specific tech support service introduced as part of the IBM deal.

Apple’s full press release is below:

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Did Apple drop Google Maps for good? Apple Maps now rolling out on iCloud.com

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Apple appears to have finally dropped Google Maps from iCloud.com, replacing it with its own in-house maps almost two years after removing Google Maps from iOS and most of its other products. Apple started slowly rolling out the feature to its iCloud beta site for select users earlier this year before pulling it, but it now seems to have replaced Google for all users of iCloud.com’s Find My iPhone feature (pictured above). Read more

Universal eyes Jeff Daniels to play former Apple CEO John Sculley in Steve Jobs movie

John Sculley Jeff Daniels

The Wrap reports that Universal Pictures is eyeing The Newsroom (and Dumb & Dumber) star Jeff Daniels to perform as former Apple CEO John Sculley in the upcoming Steve Jobs movie by Aaron Sorkin. Daniels would be reunited with Sorkin and Scott Rudin, executive producers of The Newsroom, starring alongside Michael Fassbender as Steve Jobs and Seth Rogen as Steve Wozniak. Read more

Confirmed: Bose speakers returning to Apple Stores after removal earlier this year

Bose Apple Store

It looks like Apple will indeed be cashing in on Bose speakers and headphones sales in time for the remainder of the holiday shopping season. Yesterday rumors surfaced that Apple was readying its retail stores to carry Bose products once again, and today 9to5Mac has confirmed that Bose products, including the very popular SoundLink III/ Mini Bluetooth speakers, will once again be sold by Apple alongside its Beats-branded speakers and headphones that it acquired for $3 billion earlier this year… Read more

Apple recruits ‘Head of Social Media’, will be stationed out of Beats’ West Los Angeles HQ

Tim Cook iPhone 6 tweet

Apple is looking to hire a new Head of Social Media and Content that will lead and expand on its current social media strategy. The job will be based out of Culver City, which could hint at Apple’s plans to align its overall social media strategy closer with its recently acquired Beats Electronics division which is located there. The West LA office is also in close proximity to its lead global Ad/Marketing agency Media Arts Lab. Read more