Apple adds bogus AppleTVs, iPads, iPods and iPhones to another config file, won’t deter developers

Earlier today, Mark Tweeted the amusing new file Apple put in iOS 5.1 beta 2 which includes a lot of silly references to devices that don’t exist.  This isn’t entirely new – Apple had done this to another file in iOS 5.1B1.

As you’d probably expect, it isn’t going to stop developers from finding the special sause inside iOS 5.1B2.  That doctored file is a high level file which is easily found.  Developers which we are in contact with are already digging through the lower level stuff which remains the the feeding grounds for useful information. Read more

Updated: Apple to make Logic Pro and MainStage download-only, Mac App Store apps

Update: Apple has now released Logic Pro 9 ($199) and MainStage 2 ($29) in the Mac App Store. Weighing in at 413 MB, Logic Pro 9 requires 3.6GB of disk space and still comes with all the built-in plug-ins and sounds. However, for commenters pointing out the many GBs of additional content bundled with the soon to be discontinued $499 Logic Studio, Apple is making 19GB of additional content available via in-app downloads. Otherwise the app, at first glance, appears to be largely unchanged.

To accompany the release the of the new Mac App Store versions, Logic Pro was also updated to version 9.1.6 today. Apple also updated Aperture in the Mac App Store to version 3.2.2., which mainly fixes an issue with “auto-imported Photo Stream images”.

Apple has officially informed retailers they’ll be moving distribution of their Logic Pro and Logic Express digital audio workstations to a download-only, Mac App Store model (via MacRumors):

Apple today issued a notice to resellers announcing that it has discontinued the boxed versions of its Logic Studio and Logic Express audio software packages effectively immediately, also announcing that the Logic Pro 9 and MainStage 2 components will be moving to the Mac App Store for distribution.

The report notes Apple said “new” versions of Logic Pro 9 and MainStage 2 (components of Logic Pro) would be coming to the Mac App Store, although it’s unclear what that means for Logic Express (essentially a light version of Logic Pro 9), and Soundtrack Pro. The packaged version of Logic Studio currently sells for $499.

In June Apple released a completely redesigned, and some would argue scaled back, version of their Final Cut Pro video editing suite called Final Cut Pro X. That update was also released as a download through the Mac App Store, but wasn’t well received, and some fear that the Logic apps are headed in the same direction. Apple just recently launched a universal iOS version of GarageBand, their consumer/amateur version of Logic Pro that ships with iLife. No word on a potential Logic Studio iOS app.

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Apple’s 5th Avenue Store closes as the wraps come off the Cube

Update: Here it is! (Thanks Dapper!)

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Thanks Marty!

Apple has just started closing down its 5th Avenue Store which is usually open 24/7/365 where patrons are filing out of the GM building entrance.  It is preparing for a grand re-opening at 10am tomorrow where a newly-designed $6 million cube will be unveiled.  The number of panes in the cube will drop from 90 to just 15 (3 per side).

We’re simplifying the Fifth Avenue cube. By using larger, seamless pieces of glass, we’re using just 15 panes instead of 90.

Apple will spend the next 12 hours getting the store ready according to the 5th Avenue Store web page.

Attention:We’ll be closed starting at 10:00 p.m. on Thursday, November 3 and will reopen at 10:00 a.m. on Friday, November 4.

Apple began pulling the wraps off of the 5th Avenue Store Cube upgrade project this evening.  The above pictures shows the new seamless glass panels that will eventually look like this artist’s rendition, below: Read more

Apple misses iTunes Match end of October deadline

As noted by MacRumors, Apple’s self-imposed end of October deadline has come and gone without the promised public launch of iTunes Match. The service will scan your local iTunes library and fingerprint songs in order to make them available for download (or was it streaming?) via iCloud to all authorized devices – for $25 a year flat fee, no strings attached. It’s unknown what’s behind this unusual setback. Could be last-minute backend issues that needed sorting out. Be that as it may, we’re keeping our fingers crossed for Tim Cook to keep a tight rein on his team now that the ultimate micro-manager is gone.

It’s worth mentioning, however, that Apple removed support for iTunes Match from the public release of iTunes 10.5 even though it’s been present in prior developer betas. iTunes Match resurfaced in iTunes 10.5.1 beta that was seeded to developers on October 11 and subsequently expired. Apple also last week sent notices informing developers their cloud libraries will get wiped out, another sign of an imminent launch.

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Apple’s 10-K report: Ad spending grows to $1B, Employee growth over 20%, R&D up 36%

Apple issues its 10-K report with the SEC at the end of every fiscal year and this year’s (via MacRumors, TNW) is full of growth. Numbers grew across the board from the end of fiscal 2010 to 2011:

  1. Full time employees went from 49,400 to 60,400. Retail was the bulk of that which went from 25.6K to 36K.
  2. Retail Stores up 40: 317 to 357.
  3. Ad spending up 35% from $691 million to $933 million.
  4. R&D spending up 36% to $2.4B.
  5. Leases 7 million square feet of building space 3 million of those are for retail.
  6. Apple owns 584 acres of land in various locations (including a future solar farm in North Carolina).
  7. Finally, Apple ended the year with $81.6B in cash, marketable securities and cash equivalents.
Much more here.

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Apple Ship to Store goes live in San Francisco

Yesterday it was revealed that Apple would begin to offer a ship to store option on its online store and it appears that it has just gone online. We heard it would be hitting San Francisco first:

…now we’re hearing it’s going live tonight/tomorrow (depending on your time zone) in the San Francisco area. The pilot program will reach other parts of the Bay Area within the next couple of days or so, and will gradually make its way throughout the United States over the upcoming weeks and months.

As you can see from the screenshot above, it is now live. Apple Store online shoppers now have the option of sending their item(s) to a physical Store in San Francisco. Others soon will follow leading up to the holidays.

Can you imagine how great this will be for the new Apple Store inside Grand Central Terminal?

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More details concerning iPhone 4S availability and reservations

Today Apple debuted their iPhone 4S retail availability reservation system via www.apple.com/retail/iphone/ and the Apple Store iOS app. 9to5Mac has received a bit more clarification concerning the reservation process and walk-in availability from the Apple Store Daily Download. Each evening from 9 p.m. to Midnight, hopeful iPhone 4S buyers can log on to apple.com or the Apple Store app to check model availability and reserve their iPhone 4S for the next business day. When an individual successfully creates a reservation they will have from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. the next day to pick up their reservation. Apple stores will cease all iPhone 4S sales at 8:30 p.m. to allow ample time to prepare for the nightly reservation process.

Contrary to previous reports, the iPhone 4S will be available for walk-in traffic as well as reserved at Apple retail stores. After 6 p.m. all unclaimed reservations will be forfeited and available for walk-in purchasers to buy. Select stores will also be making unclaimed inventory from the night before available from 8 a.m. to 9 a.m. each day. We hope everybody who wants to get their hands on Apple’s fastest iPhone yet are able to soon!

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Let’s talk iPhone: the rumor wrapup

Apple announced a brand new iPhone, some new iPods, and more yesterday. We had a pretty good bead on what was going to happen overall a week before the event. Read our predictions post for a refresher.

But now that the event is over, here’s our rumors post mortem.

What came true:

October 4th Event: The first sighting of ‘October 4th’ occurred when a tipster showed us AT&T’s internal systems’ change for iPhone tiers in June. The date of the change: October 4th. We postulated: AT&T raises iPhone device tier on October 4th, perhaps signaling launch date?

At that point we were far from certain. AllThingsD deserves credit for getting not only the date right but the venue – Apple’s own auditorium.

October 7th pre-orders, 14th sales: We had heard a soft launch for October 7th, just like TiPb, so we worked our way back there assuming a late September announcement.

The name ‘iPhone 4S': We pegged iPhone 4S as the name as early as April when we broke the news that Apple has seeded a next-generation iPhone to high-level gaming outfits. We also confirmed the name last week with an iTunes finding. If that wasn’t enough, two different website ‘leaks’ happened as Apple took down the website ahead of the event. Contrary to many people’s hopes and dreams, we knew going into the event today that it would only be the iPhone 4S.

The iPhone 4 design: Our April report about a new iPhone being seeded to gaming developers pointed to this new iPhone retaining the iPhone 4 design. A report from BGR detailing a next-generation T-Mobile iPhone in testing also pegged this iPhone 4 design. Additionally, TiPb, Reuters and Bloomberg all later called for the iPhone 4S featuring a design identical to the iPhone 4. We also demonstrated the first evidence for this with iTunes findings.

8 Megapixel Camera: We were actually on hand when Sony CEO Howard Stinger slipped out that they were building a high quality, backlit camera for Apple (later verified by the WSJ). Later on, DIGITIMES said Omnivision and Sony both would be making the sensors. A month ago, an Apple employee snapped a picture with his iPhone 4S. Woops.

A5 Processor: We, like everyone else, knew there would be an A5 processor.

The 64GB iPhone 4S: After a few years without a 64GB iPhone, we were finally able to confirm that Apple would unleash a 64GB varient of the iPhone 4S a few weeks ago. We guessed the prices based on foreign translated currencies, but were off.

Cards: We, like everyone else, passed over Cards app.

Find my Friends: MacRumors found Find my Friends code back in January. Since then, we spotted and detailed the Latitude-ish program. The Next Web took a pretty vague guess yesterday morning that a ‘GPS related product’ would be revealed which is sort of correct.

Siri Assistant: We called the headline feature for the keynote as the Siri Assistant a few times over the last few weeks. Our details about the user interface, exact feature set, and usage examples were spot on. We also reported in July that the feature would soon be launching with a crowd-sourced / beta standing for constant improvement.

Nuance Dictation: After reporting on incoming Nuance Dictation for the new iPhone on several occasions, we presented the first leaked screenshots of the new and handy software feature. Chronic Wire posted the first proof that Nuance is behind the technology.

World phone: We reported in February that Apple has begun placing world phone (CDMA + GSM) chips in their new iPhones. We also discovered references in iTunes which pointed to the 4S being a dual-mode device, and we heard this from sources as well along the road. TechCrunch heard this as well by way of application developer logs.

White iPod touch and new iPod nano: We posted the first photos of white iPod touch parts all the way back in July. MacRumors was able to confirm that a white iPod touch is coming in October and we discovered the three new white models in Apple’s inventory system.

The 8MP camera with better optics: We broke the news that the new iPhone will feature a brand new sensor from Sony, per their CEO’s public comments, and recently confirmed with sources that this new lens would clock in at 8 megapixels. TiPb first reported that the new iPhone will feature an improved optics system, and so did The Next Web. Bloomberg also pinpointed an eight megapixel sensor. We also reported that Apple was working on advanced face detection for iOS 5.

The cheaper iPhone: We confirmed that Apple was set to release an 8GB version of the iPhone 4 (N90A) today following Reuters report about such a device being in production. Gizmodo managed to get a few spy shots of said device from Foxconn’s Brazil-based manufacturing plant.

The $199 iPod touch: We reported that Apple was set to drop the price of the iPod touch to $199 – for the 8GB model – to better compete in a new market with the Kindle Fire.

Sprint support: We reported all the way back in June (and hardly anyone believed us) that a Sprint version of the iPhone 4 for Sprint was in advanced testing stages. This turned out to be correct as the 8GB iPhone 4 is launching soon on Sprint. In addition, we were also told back then that Sprint’s first iPhone would not be 4G, and it is not. The WSJ and Bloomberg both followed up months later claiming that Sprint and Apple signed a deal.

What didn’t come true:

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Comcast working on Slingbox type of home service called AnyPlay

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MacRumors points to a new service by Comcast which appears to mirror the functionality of a Slingbox or EyeTV, allowing a cable box to ‘Sling’ the video to an iPod around the house.

Currently, Xfinity customers can use the Xfinity TV app to watch On Demand programming, search TV listings, and schedule DVR recordings.

There is no indication of release dates or availability, but AnyPlay will be available in limited markets at first, and spreading to all Comcast customers eventually.

This is in contrast to their current app which streams on-Demand video over the internet to iPads which are on Comcast IP addresses with adjacent cable service.  Other US cable companies like Time Warner and Optimum offer Apps which stream many channels.

Check the red area above right for why this isn’t going to be very fantastic.

If you want this kind of functionality right now, but not tied to a cable company and their stipulations (and the ability to stream to devices outside your home without an extra cost), look into Slingboxes or El Gato’s EyeTV.

More confirmation of white iPod touches

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We’ve been rambling on about white iPod touches for awhile now. Back in June we postulated that Apple would create a white iPod touch after successive launches of white iPhone and iPad and launched a survey (over 80% of you wanted that guy above).

In July we told you they were coming at the next refresh and then later we showed you the front panel (below).

After that, Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo bravely forecasted that a White iPod touch was en route.

Today, MacRumors has joined in with their own information:

MacRumors has received information indicating that the next iPod touch revision will be a very minor change, with the primary addition being the introduction of a new white model. Only minor changes are expected for the existing hardware, with the addition of an oleophobic coating for the display and a revised ambient light sensor seemingly being the main differences. Otherwise, we expect the models to be nearly identical to the current fourth-generation iPod touch model.

Could we put in a request for a better backside camera? Just give us 2-3 megapixels and auto-focus like an early iPhone and we’ll shut up.

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Apple may allow users to merge iTunes, iCloud logins

A frustration for many users in the past is the fact that Apple IDs are currently not able to be merged. As Apple’s iOS 5 and iCloud near launch, Apple might be taking an important step to allow the merging of Apple IDs. iOS 5 includes several services such as iMessage, iCloud integration, Game Center, FaceTime, iTunes, the App Store, and iBooks.

Some users are frustrated because all of those services are spread across multiple Apple IDs. For example, some people have a separate Apple ID for iCloud (especially migrators from MobileMe) and for iTunes/App Store/iMessage/FaceTime, etc. According to an answer from Apple’s executive relations team, as reported by MacRumors, Apple could be readying a solution that merges all of a user’s Apple IDs:

Tim Cook about the issue, and quickly received a phone call from an Apple executive relations employee. She had spoken to the team responsible for Apple IDs and acknowledged that they understood the issue and that more people would run into the problem with iCloud. She also repeated that there is no way yet to combine accounts but revealed they are working on it. In the meantime, she recommended picking a single account to plan on keeping indefinitely and to make all future purchases on that account.

There you have it.? Read more