Apple meeting with UK ad agencies in preparation for iTunes Radio rollout

Screen Shot 2014-04-15 at 12.26.48 PM

Apple appears to be readying for an UK iTunes Radio launch in the near future. As indicated by this tweet, Apple’s director of iAd Paul Wright has recently been visiting media marketing agencies to discuss iAd in relation to iTunes Radio.

Bloomberg said that Apple was planning to launch in the UK in ‘early 2014′ last October, but so far this has not happened several months into 2014. Although many people have seen iTunes Radio sporadically appear on their devices in recent months, it is has only officially expanded to Australia beyond the US launch alongside iOS 7.

Read more

Apple under fire for Australian profit-shifting scheme that moved $9 billion in untaxed profit to Ireland

Image of CFO Oppenheimer and CEO Cook

Image of CFO Oppenheimer and CEO Cook

Following the announcement that Apple CFO Peter Oppenheimer will be retiring in September, the Australian Financial Review has uncovered evidence of a scheme that it says has allowed Apple to move around $9 billion in untaxed Aussie profit to Ireland. The program has allowed Apple to get away with paying only $200 million in taxes on $8.9 billion in profit over the past ten years or so.

Here’s how the whole thing works: Apple has created an Ireland-based company known as Apple Sales International which contributes money toward the research and development budget in Cupertino. This allows the company to legally claim an economic stake in these products and gives ASI partial ownership of the intellectual properties that comprise Apple’s products.

Read more

Apple’s iTunes Radio launches internationally, starting with Australia

iTunes Radio

Apple has finally taken its iTunes Radio streaming music service internationally: starting with Australia. The service, which launched in the United States late last year, works on iPads, iPhones, iPods running iOS 7, the Apple TV, and on iTunes 11 on the Mac or PC.

Apple® today announced iTunes Radio™ is now available to music fans in Australia. iTunes Radio is a free Internet radio service featuring over 100 stations and an incredible catalog of music from the iTunes Store®, combined with features only iTunes® can deliver. When you tune into iTunes Radio on your iPhone®, iPad®, iPod touch®, Mac®, PC or Apple TV®, you’ll have access to stations inspired by the music you already listen to, Featured Stations curated by Apple and genre-focused stations that are personalized just for you. iTunes Radio evolves based on the music you play and download. The more you use iTunes Radio and iTunes, the more it knows what you like to listen to and the more personalized your experience becomes. iTunes Radio also gives you access to exclusive “First Play” premieres from top selling artists, plus the ability to tag or buy anything you hear with just one click.

Like in the United States, iTunes Radio in Australia is supported by advertisements. However, iTunes Match subscribers can listen to iTunes Radio without ads. Apple is yet to announce any other international iTunes Radio countries, but evidence and reports suggest that Canada, New Zealand, and some European countries will be gaining the feature soon.

Read more

New flagship Apple Store in Brisbane, Australia set for Jan. 17th opening

Screen Shot 2014-01-10 at 4.04.56 PM

Apple has announced on its retail website that the forthcoming flagship Apple Store in Brisbane, Australia will have its grand opening on Friday, January 17th. The store will open at 10 AM on that date, with regular business hours beginning at 9 AM Monday through Saturday. The store will always open up at 10 AM on Sundays. The closing hours are shown in the image above from the store’s official website. Late last year, Apple teased the opening of this store with a Twitter hashtag and colorful barricades.

Read more

Watchdog group forces Apple to change Australian refund policy, review two years of possible violations

Apple-Store-vegas-winter-display-01

 

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, a business competition watchdog organization, has forced Apple to make modifications to its refund policy in order to comply with consumer protection legislation, reports the Sydney Morning Herald. According to the group, Apple misled customers with regard to what types of refund or repair they were entitled to.

According to the claims, the U.S.-based company did not provide customers with sufficient compensation for faulty devices to comply with Australian law. Now Apple has been forced to re-evaluate its practices and will have to re-examine countless potential violations that took place over the past two years. Failure to comply with the new policy could result in a massive class-action lawsuit against Apple.

Read more

Apple increases Mac mini pricing in multiple countries

Screen Shot 2013-09-25 at 7.00.20 PM

Alongside the new iMacs, Apple has silently raised the prices of all Mac mini models in both Australia and Brazil. In Australia, the prices were formerly A$699 and A$899 for the standard configurations, and the Mac mini Server model was priced at A$ 1,099.00. Now, the machines are priced at A$749, A$999, and A$1249, respectively.

Here are the new prices in Brazil (up R$ 300, 400, and 500 respectively):

Screen Shot 2013-09-25 at 7.09.44 PM

The prices for the Mac mini have also been raised in Portugal and Malaysia, multiple tipsters have noticed.

These are notable price increases, but it is unclear if there is reasoning for the change beyond standard currency fluctuations. The iMacs pricing was also tweaked when it was updated yesterday, but the Mac mini has not been altered. No other Mac prices in Australia nor Brazil have changed.

The Mac mini is presumably due for a hardware update with 802.11ac WiFi, new Fusion Drive options, and Haswell processors to match the new iMacs. Thanks, James and Joao! 

Read more