Apple reportedly looking to reduce 30% revenue cut for music, video and news apps with subscriptions

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A new report by the Financial Times suggests that Apple is looking to change the 70/30 revenue share for certain types of App Store apps. The report claims that Apple wants to change the way revenue is distributed between developers and Apple for music, video and news apps.

The report is a bit circumspect as the timing of the change does not seem to be related to any particular incident, although potentially Apple is forced into cutting the share due to potential anticompetitive complaints with Apple Music, to be announced next week.

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Pebble blames Apple for delayed iOS Pebble Time app as first backers receive watches [Update: now available]

[Update: Pebble says its app for Pebble Time users has been approved and should hit the App Store in 2-3 hours if you can’t see it yet.]

Despite its official release at the end of May, Pebble’s new Pebble Time watch is not yet fully functional for iPhone users, as its required iOS synchronization app is not yet available in the App Store. The Pebble Time Watch application allows users to set up the Pebble Time wearable, install new applications, watch faces, and software updates, but backers who have received the hardware have taken to social media to complain that there’s no iPhone app to use with it. Android users are unaffected as their version of the app is available on Google Play.

Pebble has used its Kickstarter page to pin the delay on Apple’s App Store review process…

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Apple’s ‘Proactive’ to take on Google Now with deep iOS 9 search, Augmented Reality Maps, Siri API

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After several years of quiet development, Apple is readying a major new iOS initiative codenamed “Proactive,” which will leverage Siri, Contacts, Calendar, Passbook, and third-party apps to create a viable competitor to Google Now for Android devices. Like Google Now, Proactive will automatically provide timely information based on the user’s data and device usage patterns, but will respect the user’s privacy preferences, according to sources familiar with Apple’s plans.

As an evolution of iOS’s Spotlight search feature, Proactive is the fruit of a long-term initiative that involved the acquisition of small app developers, and integration of core iOS apps. It will also work with Apple’s Maps application to display personally relevant points of interest using an augmented reality interface, and integrate with a third-party Siri API codenamed “Breadcrumbs”…

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eBook app for Apple Watch shows what not to do with watch apps

Want to read ebooks on your Apple Watch one word at a time? Of course you don’t.

There are apps that make a lot of sense for the smaller display and the quick access that Apple Watch provides, but this ebook reader certainly doesn’t hit that sweet spot. Perhaps some people are interested in reading books on their wrist one word at a time, but for others (most?), this new Wear Reader app is a great example of what not to do with Apple Watch apps: Read more

Apple debuts ‘Change Everything’ iPad ad campaign and website to highlight apps, accessories, education

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Update: Apple has uploaded its new “Change Everything” ad to YouTube, as well. It’s embedded below.

Apple has debuted its newest iPad marketing campaign, “Change Everything,” with a 1:30 commercial and a new website highlighting the apps that change the way people go about their daily lives. The ad starts off with a list of things that have changed since the release of the first iPad, such as small businesses and education.

From there the commercial demonstrates a variety of applications and accessories that have augmented the way people connect, learn, and conduct business, and enjoy their lives…

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May the 4th be with you: Apple offers collection of iOS & Mac app discounts for Star Wars Day

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To celebrate Star Wars Day— yes, that’s why everyone keeps saying “May the 4th be with you” today— Apple is offering a number of discounts on apps and in-app purchase content from Disney, Konami, and others.

Below we’ve put together links for all of the Star Wars App Store content on sale today, including both Apple’s iOS collection and other iPhone, iPad, and Mac titles discounted for the occasion: Read more

Apple opens sign-ups for developers to test upcoming App Analytics feature (U: Access starting today)

Apple has started offering registered developers the chance to sign-up and test its upcoming App Analytics feature first announced last year at WWDC. Developers have been awaiting the service since it was announced following Apple’s acquisition of TestFlight (and FlightPath), a service which offered its own analytics features. Read more

Apple updates TestFlight to support testing of Apple Watch apps

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Update: Developers are still waiting for Apple to update the backend distribution infrastructure, before they can utilize the update to the TestFlight client app.

Apple has updated its TestFlight app to support Apple WatchKit apps embedded inside beta iOS apps. This has been a significant frustration for developers in the run up to the Apple Watch’s release, as it made testing apps for the new platform difficult.

Developers should now be able to deploy beta versions of their iOS apps without removing the Watch extensions.

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New York Times, Uber and Flipboard get ready for Apple Watch

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As the Apple Watch launch draws nearer, with preorders starting April 10th, more and more developers are jumping on board. Uber rolled out a new update of its iPhone app today including its Apple Watch app — originally announced at the March event. The app allows users to request rides in one action and you can check on driver progress with a quick glance.

The New York Times is adding ‘one sentence stories’ to its portfolio for the Watch, including emoji-driven recipes and quick headlines. Push notifications will update Apple Watch users of breaking news right on the wrist. Full stories can be saved for later to be read at leisure on user’s iPhones, as the Watch form factor isn’t really appropriate for prolonged reading.

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Apple begins releasing the first set of third-party Apple Watch apps

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The Apple Watch is still almost a month away from shipping and 15 days away from being available to preview in Apple Stores, but a select few apps selected by Apple to be available for the Apple Watch have started hitting the App Store today. These app updates that add Apple Watch support include Twitter, Things, Target, Dark Sky, and Sky Guide, and many more apps are continuing to roll out with support. Read more

Review: Filters, a new photo editor for iPhone with over 800 image effects and a stunning design

Mike Rundle, an independent designer and developer, is today releasing Filters for iPhone ($0.99), a visual effects photo editor. Rundle’s integrated development workflow, both writing the code and designing the interface, shows through in his work. This is how Filters describes itself.

You don’t take photos with Filters. You transform them. Filters has over 800 ways to transform your photographs including fully adjustable authentic vintage film recreations, hand-painted textures, vibrant colored gel overlays, special multi-effect adjustments (Shine, Luna, Color Boost, Intimidate and Smart Fade) as well as standard image adjustment tools like brightness, contrast, color temperature, exposure and more. All features are included with nothing extra to purchase.
The app features over 800 different image effects presented with some of the best UI design I’ve seen. However there’s no getting away from the fact Filters enters a crowded market with stiff competition. It’s interesting to see how Rundle has tried to differentiate his app from the rest. Read on for our full review of the iPhone’s newest image app.

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