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September 26, 2013

With the new iPhone 5s and 5c rolling in and many users wanting to upgrade to the new devices, it might be wise to increase the value of your phone by unlocking it. Chronic Unlocks, the go-to company for unlocking iPhones (and various Nokias, LGs, BlackBerrys and other smartphones), offers a quick, reliable, and low-cost unlocking service. expand full story

September 21, 2013

While Touch ID is designed to scan the fingerprints of your fingers (and thumbprints of your thumbs), some users of the iPhone 5s have discovered some other body parts that are supported by Touch ID. For instance, the video above shows a user registering their nipple for Touch ID. More videos and body parts below:

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September 16, 2013

Sprint reportedly to join monthly phone hardware payments craze on iPhone launch day

Sprint is readying its own program that allows customers to roll in the cost of phone hardware in their monthly bill, according to CNET. Sprint’s program is reportedly called One Up, and it works in a similar fashion to the recently launched AT&T Next, T-Mobile Jump, and Verizon Edge initiatives.

All of the carrier programs principally work the same, with a few nuanced differences. Sprint’s One Up lets customers pick up a phone with no money down and pay for the device in 24 monthly installments. A phone that costs $649.99, for instance, will cost $27 a month (with the difference tacked on to the 24th payment). If a customer leaves the service early, that person is on the hook for the balance of the device cost, due the following month.

Unlike with a typical U.S. carrier contract, Sprint’s new program (like those from the other U.S. carriers) will allow customers to upgrade to a new device every year. The (subsidized) cost of the phone will be divided up into 24 installments and added to the customer’s monthly bill. A customer can trade-in that current hardware towards the new phone that they would like to upgrade to.

Notably, the new Sprint One Up program is claimed to launch on September 20th, which just so happens to be the launch date of the new iPhone 5s and iPhone 5c.

September 10, 2013

We’ll be live-blogging Apple’s media event today below, and we’ll be providing text and photo updates from before, during, and after the show. Simultaneously, we’ll be holding a Google Hangout. You can read our expectations for the event, and check back for the start at 1 PM Eastern/ 10 AM Pacific. Live blog starts below:

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August 28, 2013

August 19, 2013

iOS 7 beta 7 (final beta) to be released today? (update: doesn’t look like it)

According to BGR, Apple will release the seventh and final beta version of iOS 7 to developers today. The release, like most of the past seeds, is said to arrive around 1 PM EST/10 AM PST.

This new build is said to include a “much higher” build number than previous releases, and this typically means that many under-the-hood changes could have occurred between previous betas and this new beta.

BGR, which previously reported that iOS 7 beta 6 would arrive this week, notes that the mix-up in information is unsurprisingly due to the iOS 7 beta 6 quick-fix for iTunes in the Cloud last week. It seems that the iOS 7 beta 7 that could come today was originally planned to be a sixth (and final) beta. A golden master seed is expected in September.

Update: iFun recently reported that its sources say there will be no more betas for iOS 7 until a GM is released at next month’s event. The site has been correct on beta releases in the past and tells us the info comes from a reliable source.

July 15, 2013

As it has done in the past for iPhones and other products/services, Apple has reached out to international Apple Retail Employees for some ideas to sell more iPhones in retail stores. The message (above) to employees was sent out late last week. Interested employees will be able to submit their idea and eligible employees will be offered an 8-week trip to work out of Apple’s Cupertino, CA headquarters with the iPhone sales team on the idea. While Apple has held similar programs in the past, the timing is interesting…

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July 8, 2013

In a blast from the past, Apple to offer $50 off HP printers in its retail stores

Tomorrow night, Apple Stores across the country will be refreshed with new posters, layouts, and accessories for the summer. This store refresh follows some minor changes to Apple Retail Store layouts due to the new Back to School offers.

One of the new focal points of this upcoming Apple Store layout refresh is the promotion of third-party printers. This promotion will include new selections of HP and Epson printers. Notably, the promotion will instantly save customers $50 on select HP models:

While the image says July 2nd,  we are told that Apple shipped out the promotional “magnets” to stores early and that the promotion will actually kick off tomorrow at the start of business.

For several years, up until early 2012, Apple gave Mac customers $100 off of printers by way of a rebate program.

May 29, 2013

Apple’s varying of suppliers profiled as move to deter risks, provide greater supply chain balance

The Wall Street Journal takes a look at Apple’s continuous shifts and expansion of its Asia-based product suppliers. For several years, Foxconn has been known as the de facto Apple manufacturing partner for iPhones, iPads, iPods and Macs. However, over the past few years, Apple has begun manufacturing certain products at Tawain-based Pegatron. Today’s report positions Apple’s move to diversify its production manufacturing partners as one to reduce risk and to provide greater supply chain balance.

But under current Chief Executive Tim Cook, Apple is dividing its weight more equally with a relatively unknown supplier, giving the technology giant a greater supply-chain balance.

 Notably, the profile asserts that Apple pushed this diversification due to issues with iPhone 5 production last year:
People familiar with the matter point to strategic reasons for the shift: risk diversification after Foxconn’s manufacturing glitches last year with the iPhone 5 that resulted in scratches on the metal casings, and Apple’s decision to expand its product lines amid growing competition from Samsung and others.
With the iPhone 5’s thinner, lighter design with anodized aluminum, a notable number of customers found their iPhones exterior color chipping. Multiple reports, at the time, claimed that this was due to production-related issues (at Foxconn), and that Apple even rejected several million iPhone 5s from Foxconn.
The report also profiles Apple and Foxconn each becoming difficult to handle for the other partner:

Foxconn, in its growing heft as the world’s largest electronics contract company, was also getting more difficult for Apple to control, with incidents such as changing component sourcing without notifying Apple, people familiar with the matter said. At the same time, Foxconn became frustrated with the growing complexity of Apple products, such as the iPhone 5, which is difficult to make in the volumes Apple needed.

The report goes on to profile the differences in relationships between Steve Jobs and Tim Cook with Foxconn’s executive leadership. Additionally, the report seems to claim that the much-rumored low-cost iPhone will be built by Pegatron, but it is not clear if this comes from independent sources or an analyst cited near the end of the report.

May 27, 2013

Colorful drawing app hides a secret: a hidden tethering mode (Update: removed from App Store)

Update: Surprise! The app has been removed from the App Store.

Yet another iOS app developer has managed to sneak an app to unlock iPhone Internet Tethering into the App Store.

This time, the app is not a flashlight, but a colorful drawing app called “Little Artist Canvas“.

The tethering setup process is similar (and just as tedious as past solutions), but as AppAdvice notes, the $0.99 app could be worth it for those who want to circumvent paying official Internet Tethering carrier fees.

Speeds depend on your actual iPhone’s carrier data connection.

Setup process (video) – Written info below

Results may vary, but we have independently verified with one iPhone that the app’s hidden tethering feature works. Apple will likely remove this app as soon as possible.

May 24, 2013

April 22, 2013

Apple is sponsoring John Lennon’s ‘Lennon Educational Tour Bus’ organization

Apple is sponsoring John Lennon’s “Lennon Educational Tour Bus,” according to the Tour’s website. Additionally, Apple’s logo is planted on the side of the bus (as seen in the image above).

The Tour Bus organization is a non-profit movement to assist children in creating their own music. The group also has an App Store app to keep up to date with upcoming events.

The bus apparently uses Macs on-board for the music creation work.

April 17, 2013

Screen Shot 2013-04-17 at 12.52.03 PM_thumb.

Update: AAPL has briefly dipped below 400 and continues to trade around that mark.

This morning, Apple’s stock has reached its lowest levels per share since late 2011. Since the beginning of 2012, Apple’s stock has rallied all the way up to over $700 per share, but since the end of the 2012, the stock has gone through a downward spiral. Today, the stock is trading at a little over $400 per share, with a daily low of $400.78. These numbers are in the same territory as late 2011 values per share, the same time when Tim Cook took over as CEO.

Chart of Aug-Oct. 2011 below:

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April 15, 2013

Mailbox email app for iPhone updated with improved swipes, smarter snoozes

Mailbox for iPhone and iPod touch, the popular Gmail application recently acquired by Dropbox, has been updated with a couple neat enhancements. Adjustments for snooze times are now more specific, swipes are faster, and the UI has been updated with various tweaks. Additionally, bug and performance fixes are also present.

What’s New in Version 1.2.0

– smarter snoozes (adjust based on time of day and week) – faster swipes (swipe as many items at one time as you want) – UI improvements (e.g. double-tap a name bubble to see email address) – bug fixes (including swipe-to-open bug) and performance improvements

April 4, 2013

Apple reportedly closing in on ‘iRadio’ deals, still aiming for summer launch

CNET looked at some of the recent talks between Apple and the record labels recording Apple’s plans for a streaming, radio-like service. According to the report, Apple is working to strike deals with both the Warner and Universal Music groups within the week. Sony would still be one of the major holdouts.

Apple could sign deals with both Warner Music and Universal Music Group within the next week, according to the sources. But both people caution that the deals have not yet been made and could still fall apart. In addition, Apple still needs to get Sony Music Group on board, as well as the music publishers. Even so, Apple has told the labels it’s determined to get all its deals signed in time for a summer rollout. In addition to the U.S., Apple is hoping to quickly unveil the service in up to a dozen territories, according to sources, including the U.K, France, Germany, Australia, and Japan.

While recent reports have pinned the service’s launch for late 2013, CNET said Apple still wants to have a summer launch take place. The Verge claimed the same just last week. We discovered hard evidence of such a service being in development, suggesting that iRadio is indeed in the works for a launch sometime this year.

CNET’s report said Apple is working on functionality such as quick-button-based access to restart a song and new payment terms for record labels. The report also adds that the Apple service will be more Pandora-like than Rdio, suggesting true, radio-like randomization versus play-on-demand audio content.

March 28, 2013

Facebook to hold Android event next week, likely to announce an iPhone competitor

Facebook is having an event on April 4th where it will talk about the future of Android.

We’ve learned a little more.

Facebook and HTC are again tied up building a phone together in which Facebook plays a major role. This isn’t like the ChaCha or Salsa phones which were mostly flops. This is a “Face-forked” version of Android with many Facebook modifications. More details including information on the ad campaigns over at 9to5Google.

Invite below

March 26, 2013

According to Digitimes, Apple is planning on launching a TV set either later this year or in early 2014. The site, which has a mixed track record, says that the display is of 4K resolution. Specifically, the report calls for a 3840 x 2160 panel in the TV. While the site says Apple could be working with LG on this, we previously profiled a 4K Sharp-built panel as “unreal.” Repeating previous rumors and speculation, Digitimes thinks the Apple TV set will sport motion and voice input. 

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March 22, 2013

Apple blocks OS X “Yontoo” malware that injected ads into websites

Yesterday, we noted that a new “Yontoo” malware hit the web that could inject advertising into websites (including Apple’s own site).

Today, Apple has blocked that malware by updating its anti-malware definition system.

The change was first reported by Intego:

Apple has decided the Yontoo Adware has fallen too far on the side of undesirable behavior, as they have released an update to the XProtect.plist definitions file to provide Mac OS X with basic detection for the Yontoo adware as OSX.AdPlugin.i. In testing, it appears this detection is very specific and potentially location-dependent. This extra specificity is likely there so as to catch only the surreptitious installations of this file.

March 12, 2013

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