Apple and French fashion retailer Colette teasing one day in-store ‘experience’ on September 30th

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On its website, French fashions retailer Colette is teasing a ‘one day only experience’, taking place at its stores on September 30th. The event runs from store open to 7 pm local time (via MacGeneration). Other details are unknown.

The invite image sort of resembles the Apple Watch home screen, so maybe this is some sort of special demonstration of the upcoming product. There is a possibility that Colette will sell the device in its store when the Watch is released ‘early next year’. Although this would make sense due to the connection with fashion, it would still be weird for the company to demo the product in public when it is still many months off release.

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Microsoft confirms it’s opening its “first flagship store” a few blocks from Apple’s iconic cube as Steve Jobs backstory revealed

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Microsoft has confirmed its rumored plan to open what it describes as its “first flagship store” on Manhattan’s Fifth Avenue, a few blocks away from Apple’s glass-cubed flagship store, reports the WSJ.

“As our first flagship store, it will serve as the centerpiece of our Microsoft Stores experience,” said David Porter, corporate vice president for Microsoft retail stores. “This is a goal we’ve had since day one—we were only waiting for the right location. And now we have it.”

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European Commision to accuse Ireland of giving illegal state aid to Apple, fines could be €Billions

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It looks like this week’s Apple “xxx-gate” is a big one with the Financial Times reporting that the European Commision is about to come down hard on Apple for its long held tax avoidance strategies in Ireland.

Typically the EU has used its state aid powers to address broader competition issues. But in the past year Brussels has attempted to target the tax affairs of companies such as Apple, Starbucks and Amazon. It is a novel application of the law with far-reaching implications, not just for the companies, or EU countries, but for EU-US relations in general.

This week the European Commission will publish the first findings in the Apple case. The details – including evidence from bygone tax negotiations – are likely to be explosive.

The US is no happier with Apple’s use of specially created Irish tax loopholes which allow it to avoid paying taxes it would otherwise be due. Apple CEO Tim Cook and other execs faced Senate Subcommittee questioning in May in which focused on Apple’s tax avoidance schemes.

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Did Apple apply pressure to Irish authorities in 1991 and again in 2007 when negotiating tax deals and if so were these illegal competitive measures that gave Apple advantages over competitors? Luca Maestri, Apple’s finance chief, of course denies any wrongdoing… Read more

Review: Intrepid’s Journeyman – an impressive leather messenger bag that can go corporate

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Indiana Jones meets bike messenger meets business briefcase is how I’d describe Intrepid’s $369 Journeyman messenger bag. My carrying case of choice over the past 3 months has been this hybrid satchel/briefcase that you carry like a messenger bag comfortably on your back with a big strap holding it up firmly but comfortably across your chest… Read more

Apple seemingly preparing for China iPhone 6 launch on October 10th

A supposed screenshot of a notice (via TechWeb) sent to Apple retail employees suggests that Apple is readying a China iPhone 6 (and 6 Plus) launch for October 10th. As stated on the Chinese site (translated):

It is important that the person broke new iPhone prototype store shelves will be put on Oct. 7, and should be officially on sale in October 10. A few days ago the Ministry of Industry Minister Miao Wei once said in an interview, iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus has entered the final stage of the audit, which means the phones will soon be landing in mainland China.

This is shortly after China’s national week-long holiday. Independently, the Chinese press have also reported the same October 10th date for the iPhone 6 debut. Last week, regulators stated that the phone was nearing final approval, causing black market iPhone 6 prices to plummet.

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‘Apps for Health’ section hits App Store following Apple’s release of Healthkit enabled iOS 8.0.2

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Now that Apple is 8.0.2 rolled out and we’re all relatively stable with a Healthkit-enabled OS, Apple is giving us a new section of the App Store for health-related apps. 

Experience an entirely new approach to wellness where your fitness app can talk to your calorie tracker, your doctor can be automatically notified of updates to your health data, and great apps work together for a healthier you. This handpicked collection highlights the best fitness, nutrition, and medical apps customized for iOS 8.

Red prices on pink background?  They must have moved that Maps launch and iOS 8.0.1 guy over to design.  Read more

iOS 8 Roundup: The best weather widgets for Notification Center

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When Apple introduced iOS 7 with an overhauled design for the iPhone and iPad software, it replaced the weather widget showing current temperature and weekly forecast introduced with iOS 5 with a text summary of the day’s weather conditions. This weather summary includes an icon for the current weather condition as well as a text description like ‘mostly cloudy’, but it tends to give you the high and low temperatures of the day and not the current temperature like Apple’s former weather widget.

Luckily, iOS 8 allows developers to create third-party widgets including – you guessed it – weather widgets with current temperature and forecast. Since iOS 8 was released last week, I’ve been trying a variety of apps with included weather widgets, and below I’ll share with you what I’ve discovered so far.

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FBI director says officials have been in talks with Apple, Google over device encryption policies

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Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation James Comey expressed his concern today over Apple and Google’s decision to encrypt information stored on smartphones, the Huffington Post reports, adding that FBI officials are pushing both companies to change their policies in order to allow law enforcement officials to access data in certain instances.

“I am a huge believer in the rule of law, but I am also a believer that no one in this country is above the law,” Comey told reporters at FBI headquarters in Washington. “What concerns me about this is companies marketing something expressly to allow people to place themselves above the law.”

In the case of the iPhone maker, Apple CEO Tim Cook used the company’s privacy stance as a major marketing point on a number of occasions over the past month. Read more

Report claims rumored refreshed Mac mini could launch next month

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Following rumors of a possible Mac mini refresh earlier this year and references on Apple’s own website, a new report says Apple could introduce an update to the product as early as next month. MacRumors cites a source that has provided accurate tips in the past claiming the new Mac mini could launch alongside new iPads and OS X Yosemite expected at an event in October. Read more

Consumer Reports devising authoritative test for iPhone 6 bending issues

Consumer Reports LG G Flex

Not sure what to believe about recent claims that the iPhone 6 Plus has a malleability issue? Consumer Reports says it is in the process of undergoing authoritative testing to find its own answer to the question of whether or not the larger iPhone has a bending problem.

According to their post, Consumer Report will critically test the new iPhones against other popular smartphones using their “sophisticated machinery” which can apply up to 1,000 pounds of force previously used to test the LG G Flex and determine whether or not the iPhone 6 models are more likely to bend than other phones. Read more

Apple responds to iPhone 6 Bendgate controversy, says only 9 customers have complained

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Apple has officially issued a statement regarding the iPhone 6 bending controversy saying the issue is rare during real world use and that it’s only received complaints from 9 customers (via CNBC). Apple adds, according to the reports, that the “new iPhones feature steel/titanium inserts to reinforce stress locations and use the strongest glass in the industry.” Apple also commented that bending is “extremely rare” during normal use and that it performs a number of strength and durability tests (as you’d expect) before it ships new devices (via WSJ):

Since going on sale Friday, Apple said only nine customers have contacted the company about a bent iPhone 6 Plus—the larger and more expensive of its two new iPhones. Apple said both the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus passed a series of tests meant to check the products’ strength and durability to withstand every day, real-life use.

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Apple aware of iCloud brute-force vulnerability six months before ‘Celebgate’

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The software developer credited by Apple for discovering last year’s developer center flaw says that he informed Apple of an iCloud weakness that may have been used to obtain celebrity nudes more than six months before the photos were accessed.

The Daily Dot reports that Ibrahim Balic advised Apple in March of a Find My Phone weakness that would allow brute-force attacks on iCloud accounts. It has been suggested that this may have been one of the methods used to access the accounts – or even complete iPhone backups – of celebrities …  Read more