About the Author

Benjamin Mayo

@bzamayo

Follow Benjamin on Twitter to keep up with his latest projects. Benjamin blogs about Apple news and rumors, and posts insightful product and app reviews. Read his work on 9to5Mac and his personal blog.

Benjamin Mayo also creates apps for iOS as a professional indie developer and contractor; more details here. Email to discuss making your iOS project a reality.

Benjamin Mayo's Favorite Gear

Today

Apple rebrands 2015 Apple TV as ‘Apple TV HD’ as it introduces Apple TV+ streaming service

Following the event today, Apple has not released any new hardware but it has rebranded the 2015 fourth-generation Apple TV as the Apple TV HD. The set-top box, formerly known as simply ‘Apple TV’, now has a better name that it distinguishes it from the newer Apple TV 4K.

Apple has lifted the curtain on its original content television show plans and showed the first snippets today of its own-produced TV shows. The company previewed what it has in a store in a fast-cut montage trailer. The Apple TV+ service will debut in the fall — pricing is yet to be announced.

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Apple has just unveiled its new premium News service featuring premium newspaper and magazines for $9.99 a month. The service is branded as News+ and is available today with the release of the new iOS and macOS software updates. $9.99 includes family sharing, so you can share with up to six Family members at no extra cost.

The service is integrated directly into the News app and features magazines from National Geographic, Popular Science, New Yorker, Vogue, Rolling Stone and more.

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Sylvania HomeKit Light Strip

March 24

Apple playfully turns on its March 25 event live stream early, showing an empty Steve Jobs Theater

Apple has publicly turned on its March 25 event live stream early this time around, teasing eagle-eyed viewers by occasionally raising the curtain to reveal … something.

For the first time, Apple will present its Services vision to the public at tomorrow’s March 25 event. The Wall Street Journal has posted a lengthy article today detailing the timeline of how Apple got to this moment, with Tim Cook intimately involved in steering the ship towards Services as early as 2014.

The report says that Apple will charge for its original content. Subscriptions to HBO, Showtime, Starz will apparently cost $9.99 each as part of Apple’s TV app, and premium Apple News will also carry a $9.99 price tag.

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March 23

Apple AirPods 2 orders now shipping, delivery from Tuesday

If you ordered new AirPods on the same day they were announced, then it looks like Apple Store has just started shipping the orders with delivery from Tuesday 26th March, the day after Apple’s special event.

Bloomberg: Apple’s ‘Netflix for games’ service will payout to developers based on time spent playing each title

We’ve heard a lot about the Apple News premium newspaper and magazine subscription, the TV service, and the original content TV efforts, but Apple’s interest in a ‘Netflix for games’ has gone more under-the-radar. Now Bloomberg shines some more light on the matter …

March 22

Overnight, the Apple Music service has received a server-side upgrade which results in a redesigned ‘Browse’ tab in the Music app for iPhone and iPad. The new look seems to be rolling out slowly, as some readers are reporting they are still seeing the previous design.

Previously, the Browse tab was laid out with a single horizontally-scrolling carousel of featured content and then a list of navigation options, which would start deep navigation hierarchies before users of the app would actually see any real content. The new design surfaces much more music upfront, accessible with one tap.

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Digitimes says AirPower to launch in ‘late March’, again citing GPP bridge rectifier suppliers

Yet again, Digitimes is quoting supply chain sources that expect the Apple AirPower mat to launch in late March. Seeing as today is March 22nd, there aren’t too many days left for that particular deadline …

March 21

Update: The AirPower image has been removed from Apple’s servers, but the HTML and CSS references remain for now. Who knows when AirPower will show up for real?

The AirPods page was updated yesterday to highlight the new features in the updated model and mentions the wireless charging case. However, the previously featured picture of AirPods and an iPhone X laying on the AirPower mat was removed in the redesign.

It turns out — there is actually a new never-before-seen official AirPower image hidden in the source code that was intended to be on the AirPods page. It shows the new AirPods charging case and “David’s” iPhone XS laying on the so far unreleased AirPower mat …

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March 20

Apple requires all new apps and updates to support iPhone XS Max and new iPad Pro from March 27

Apple today said that it will require developers to support the iPhone XS Max and 12.9-inch 3rd-generation iPad Pro (if available on iPad) for all new apps and updates starting March 27.

Apple has just launched the second generation of its Apple AirPods. The new earbuds and come with the long-promised wireless charging case, a new H1 chip, hands-free Hey Siri, longer battery life and faster connections to devices.

The new AirPods are available now for $199 with the wireless charging case, or available with the standard case for $159. Existing AirPods owners can purchase the wireless charging case separately for $79.

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March 19

iMac Pro now available with 256 GB RAM option … for an extra $5200

Apple has quietly updated the iMac Pro build-to-order options to include new Radeon Pro Vega 64X graphics and a 256 GB RAM option. These upgrades don’t come cheap. The 256 GB RAM memory option will set you back a cool $5200, on top of the cost of the $5000 iMac Pro base model.

Apple has just dropped new iMacs on the Apple Store: the same design with new internals. The 21.5-inch iMac features 8th-generation Intel CPUs in quad-core and six-core SKUs. The 27-inch iMac houses 9th-generation Intel CPUs, with 6-core and 8-core configurations. Apple says these new processors deliver up to 2x the performance of the previous generation iMac.

In terms of GPU, Apple now offers Radeon Pro Vega graphics upgrades on both 21.5-inch and 27-inch form factors. The new iMacs are available today in the Apple Store, starting at $1299 and $1799 for the 21.5- and 27-inch models respectively.

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Apple TV Events app updated ahead of March 25 ‘It’s showtime’ event

The Apple Events app for Apple TV has now been updated to include the details for Apple’s first event of the year. It’s showtime.

March 18

Apple today announced updates to its iPad line. There’s a new iPad mini and a new iPad Air, with a 10.5-inch screen. The iPad Air features a thinner design with a 10.5-inch display and the Apple A12 Bionic chip.

The iPad mini keeps the same 7.9-inch screen, but gets the same A12 spec bump. Both the Air and the Mini are compatible with the first-generation Apple Pencil. The iPad mini starts at $399 for the 64 GB model, and the Air starts at $499. You can order them today from Apple.com.

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New York Times names five of Apple’s original content TV shows that have finished filming

In a lengthy profile over the weekend, the New York Times sets up its narrative for the upcoming Apple spring event; specifically the state of Apple’s TV service.

Echoing other publications, the NYT believes that Apple’s shows will likely debut in the fall. It says there are five shows that have finished filming and about six more are in the middle of production. In fact, it goes on to name the five projects that are now at the post-production stage.

Update: The store is back up — and there’s two new iPads available now.

The Apple Store has just gone down, a move usually associated with new products. Whilst there is an Apple event next Monday focused on software and services, it is about time for Apple’s spring hardware updates.

Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman cryptically tweeted over the weekend that Apple was planning updates to the iPad and iMac lines ahead of the ‘It’s showtime’ event.

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March 15

The idea that the iPhone 11 would feature a triple-camera system in a rectangular formation — three cameras plus the flash — was first raised by Onleaks back in January. Japanese blog Macotakara today corroborates the mockups with sourcing from Chinese suppliers.

The site says the design of the new iPhone camera system is similar to the camera module seen in the Huawei Mate 20 and may be available on both the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max successors, but limited to higher-capacity storage tiers. Macotakara has proven reliable several times in the past.

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On Wednesday, Spotify filed a complaint with the European Commission regarding Apple’s App Store policies and started an aggressive PR campaign to back it up. Apple has today published a public statement in response to Spotify’s argument.

Apple says that Spotify is spreading a ‘misleading rhetoric’. They cite how Spotify makes most of its revenue from advertising and mobile carrier partner deals, of which Apple takes no cut at all. The In-App Purchase subscriptions are a small percentage of Spotify’s business — and Spotify wants to pay Apple zero for those subscription sales meaning they are essentially taking the benefits of a free app and Apple receives no compensation at all from Spotify’s operations.

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