Apple CEO Tim Cook to speak at WSJDLive conference in October

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Apple CEO Tim Cook is set to appear at a new technology conference hosted by The Wall Street Journal this October called WSJDLive. 

Apple executives including Steve Jobs have appeared at past “D” conferences hosted by former WSJ employees Walt Mossberg and Kara Swisher. WSJDLive appears to be a continuation of sorts of those conferences, although Mossberg and Swisher since left to form Recode.net and have also hosted Apple executives at the site’s new “Code Conference” in May. Read more

WSJ: iWatch, iPhone 6 to link via NFC, watch coming in two sizes with curved OLED screens

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A new report from The Wall Street Journal today is corroborating many previous rumors about Apple’s upcoming wearable, including that the device will include some form of NFC technology and will be shipping in multiple sizes. Furthermore, the report notes that Apple will also be bringing NFC to its next iPhone as seen in previous leaks, making it easier for the two devices to pair and signifying that the watch will be more than just a fitness gadget:

The gadget’s use of near-field communication, or NFC, reflects Apple’s broader ambitions for the so-called iWatch beyond health and fitness tracking, the most commonly cited use. Apple also is expected to add the wireless technology to the next versions of its iPhone, people familiar with the device said, potentially simplifying the process of connecting, or pairing, the two devices.

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This is the room where the iPhone was born

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Ahead of the latest Apple-Samsung trial, Apple is sharing some of the details regarding the creation of the iPhone with the WSJ. As an aside, Apple also shared a shot of the secret windowless room where the original iPhone meetings took place. The nondescript room is where most of the design decisions for the original iPhone’s software were made and is called “hallowed ground” to Greg Christie, who designs the software interface for products and one of the first members recruited to work on the device in 2004.

It doesn’t mean that the windowless room, lit by fluorescent lights hanging from the ceiling, looked like anything special. Christie recalled the walls had signs of water damage from a flood in an adjacent bathroom. A few images covered the walls including one of Apple’s “Think Different” posters of famous graphic designer Paul Rand and another of a large chicken running around without its head.

Inspiration comes in many forms.

Apple may be sharing this information to drum up public support before the trial. Or, perhaps more likely, Apple knows this information will come out in the trial and wants to “own” the story beforehand.

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WSJ says two larger screened iPhone models due this year, plastic 5c to be scrapped

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The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Apple is planning to release two distinct iPhone models with larger displays later this year. This corroborates a report from Bloomberg News published late last year, so this is not entirely new information. The first new iPhone is claimed to have a screen between 4.5 and 5-inches while the second model will go beyond 5-inches in size:

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Tim Cook writes about workplace equality in the WSJ, urges Congress to approve Employment Nondiscrimination Act

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In a rare move, Apple CEO Tim Cook has written an opinion article in the Wall Street JournalTim Cook discusses his feelings about race, gender, nationality, and sexual orientation equality in the context of life inside of and outside of Apple. Cook says that Apple fosters an environment where every single person is safe and welcomed. He goes on to share details about this and Apple’s policies:

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WSJ: Apple testing larger iPhone screens, some up to six inches

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The Wall Street Journal reports that Apple is testing larger iPhone displays, ranging from 4.8 to 6 inches. This isn’t the first time we’ve heard reports of this, but it does give further credence to the rumors. While the next generation of iPhones, which will be announced on September 10th, will include two different designs, the screen sizes are expected to remain the same. A more diverse family of displays, however, could in the pipeline for future generations.

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Obama administration plans to curb patent trolling with 5 step plan

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The WSJ reports that after years of worsening patent legislation in the US, the Obama administration has finally decided to try to do something about it.

The president has taken a dim view of certain patent-holding firms. In February, he said some firms “don’t actually produce anything themselves. They’re just trying to essentially leverage and hijack somebody else’s idea to see if they can extort some money out of them.”

Apple, depending on who you ask, is sometimes the agressor in patent cases but is often the victim of  frivolous lawsuits that often earn these patent holding companies millions and millions of dollars. These companies aren’t really companies at all; instead they are just shell companies built around a patent or a portfolio of patents, which are often overly broad or were never intended to be used in a particular way.

These lawsuits often take place in courts in Eastern Texas, where judges are notoriously friendly to trolling interests.

Some examples of companies who’ve questionably sued Apple or its interests: VirnetXPersonal Audio LLC, Lodsys, Motorola? etc.

The administration’s plans in 5 steps:

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