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Jake Smith

December 18, 2012

Just after releasing iOS 6.1 beta 4 to developers yesterday, Apple has released iOS 6.0.2 to the masses this afternoon. The update is only for the iPhone 5 and iPad mini and seems minor, as the folks in Cupertino said the update simply addresses bugs including a Wi-Fi bug that has plagued many users. You can grab the updates from iTunes, your device, or by directly downloading them from the links below. After initial OTA problems, the update looks to now be installing.

iPad Mini (Wi-Fi) (iPad2,5) version 6.0.2 (Build 10A550), Download

iPad Mini (GSM) (iPad2,6) version 6.0.2 (Build 10A8500), Download

iPad Mini (CDMA) (iPad2,7) version 6.0.2 (Build 10A8500), Download

iPhone 5 (GSM) (iPhone5,1) version 6.0.2 (Build 10A551), Download

iPhone 5 (CDMA) (iPhone5,2) version 6.0.2 (Build 10A551), Download

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December 17, 2012

According to the Wall Street Journal, Apple is said to be in talks with New York-based Foursquare to add the company’s data to its Maps application. For those out of the ‘social scene’, Foursquare is a popular social network that allows users to check in to any location and share tidbits with followers. According to the report, the partnership between the two companies would lead to local data from Foursquare being incorporated into Apple’s Maps app. This will presumably give users more information on destined locations and it would compete with Google’s own Map solution that released on iOS last week. Apple SVP Eddy Cue of Internet Services, someone who would certainly be in the know with this type of deal, was seen checking into a location on Foursquare last week. Moreover, from the looks of the picture attached, it was shot with the front camera on the iPod touch.

Apple has shown its willingness before to partner with social services and add them into its iOS platform. Not only have the folks in Cupertino partnered with Facebook and Twitter to promote easy sharing across the entirety of iOS, but also they have partnered with Yelp to provide easy access to information within Maps and its Siri personal assistant feature. The social location space is heating up, as Facebook just boosted its Nearby feature this afternoon to give information on local businesses. A partnership with Foursquare could give Apple a bigger presence in this space.

Since the launch of Apple Maps on iOS 6 in September, users have highlighted several issues with the service. Apple CEO Tim Cook has reassured more than once that Apple is working to fix the problems with Maps—specifically with the mapping data.

[tweet http://twitter.com/cue/status/278968979601625088]

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Apple releases iMac EFI Update 2.0 bringing general fixes to sleep and Thunderbolt

Apple has released an update to the late 2012 models of the iMac, that owners will sure want to grab. The iMac EFI Update 2.0, weighing in at 4.32MB, brings general performance fixes to sleep and Thunderbolt, and additionally improves the compatibility when using 5GHz band Wi-Fi. As always you can grab the update directly from Apple or via Software Update. [Apple]

Don’t miss: Apple releases Mac Wi-Fi Update 1.0 improving 5GHz band compatibility

Apple releases Mac Wi-Fi Update 1.0 improving 5GHz band compatibility

Apple just released Mac Wi-Fi Update 1.0. The 1.49MB update, recommended for all late 2012 Mac systems, according to the folks in Cupertino, improves the compatibility when using the 5GHz band Wi-Fi. Like always, you speed-hungry Wi-Fi users can download the update directly from Apple or via Software Update. More info:

This update is recommended for all late 2012 Mac systems. This update improves compatibility when using the 5GHz band in Wi-Fi.

Boot ROM or SMC Version Information: To confirm the update has been applied, the CFBundleVersion string of the AirPortBrcm4311.kext will need to be checked.

New driver delivered in update: AirPortBrcm4331.kext CFBundleVersion = 612.20.15

/System/Library/Extensions/IO80211Family.kext/Contents/PlugIns/AirPortBrcm4331.kext/Contents/Info.plist 

[Apple]

Google launches YouTube Capture for iOS, allowing for easy video recording and uploading

Google has launched YouTube Capture for iOS on the iTunes App Store this afternoon, allowing users to upload video “in as few as 3 clicks.” The folks at YouTube released the app to make it easier for users to film and upload video to YouTube, as the app allows for video to be filmed from right within the app, uploaded, and shared to Google+, Facebook, and Twitter. Besides the speed, the app is also welcomed because it offers an easier way to upload videos than iOS’ finicky uploader does. We have to wonder why this feature was not just included into the YouTube for iOS app—but, hey, we’ll take it. [iTunes]

With the highly anticipated Google Maps for iOS now among us, Google SVP of Commerce Jeff Huber shared some interesting download numbers this afternoon. In just 48 hours, Huber said that a whopping 10 million users downloaded the Apple Maps alternative from the iTunes App Store. Also, as the app climbs up the charts to the top free app, the number of downloads is likely rising quick. Google Maps for iOS was well received, garnering positive reviews and ratings, with even Google admitting that its iPhone version of Maps is better than its Android version. Additionally, things look to get even better: Google shared last week that iPad support and offline mode are launching soon.

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Amazon smartphone reportedly in production, set to go on sale in mid-2013

Rumors have been in the air for several months that claim Amazon will compete in the handset space with its own offering, much like it did with its Kindle Fire line of tablets. According to a new report from the Taiwan Economic News, the Internet retail giant has selected the infamous Foxconn to manufacture the handset. Additionally, Amazon is said to have ordered 5 million units and will launch the device at $100 to $200 sometime in the second quarter or third quarter of 2013.

The Kindle Fire line of tablets, which has software based off Android with many custom additions (and even more subtractions), has done wonders for Android’s tablet marketshare, helping the platform close the seemingly insurmountable gap with the iPad. Amazon was the first to offer a tablet at such a low cost, selling in seemingly big numbers. However, no specific figures have ever been given. Many saw the $199 Kindle Fire as a cheaper alternative to the $499 iPad, but things may change this holiday season with the iPad mini now available at $329.

With its large online marketplace and bevy of apps on its Amazon Appstore, we wouldn’t put it past the company to be a serious competitor in the handset game—at least for the Android devotees and the relatively small footprint of countries where Amazon operates/offers content. (via Engadget)

Shortly after falling to $497 in pre-market trade this morning, Apple’s stock price has teetered on $500 for the first time since February during regular trading hours. Apple’s stock was on a tear during the summer and into the fall, maxing out over $700 in September just before the launch of the highly anticipated iPhone 5.

However, after three quarters of impressive growth, and a huge holiday quarter currently going on, many analysts have downgraded their Apple targets as the stock has subsequently fallen in recent weeks. Apple’s stock is now at a low point today, even with the welcomed news yesterday that Apple sold 2 million iPhone 5s in China during the launch weekend.

Citi Apple analysts Glen Yeung, Walter Pritchard, and Jim Suava cut the price target for AAPL to $575 last night, citing not great enough iPhone demand. Additionally, UBS, Jefferies, and Mizuho Securities all cut their price expectations. Along with iPhone demand, the executive shakeup and Maps debacle assumedly has played a role in the stock decline. Talk of higher taxes on earnings in 2013 may spook some investors, as well.

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Flash and Brightcove creator shares his vision of an Apple TV (complete with coax dongle)

Shortly after Apple CEO Tim Cook’s comments that the television industry is “an intense area of interest,” Brightcove CEO (and ColdFusion and Flash Creator) Jeremy Allaire has laid out plenty of speculation as to what the Apple television may consist of on AllThingsD this morning. There have been plenty of rumors and mockups before, but Allaire has compiled some new and pretty well done mockups, and he theorized one possible route Apple may take with the television. Instead of just releasing a 46- and 60-inch television set with up to a 4K resolution, according to Allaire, Apple would also include a companion device for $149:

A new companion device for TV that starts at $149, attaches to nearly any existing TV, and does not require customers to buy an expensive new monitor. This is crucial for quickly establishing and maintaining platform dominance quickly and even stand-alone could be a $5-10 billion opportunity….The device will offer HDMI and digital audio output, a gigabit Ethernet port and built-in WiFi, as well as a two lightning ports — one for power, another for the included “coax dongle,” which will connect directly to most existing cable TV hookups to replace your existing cable set-top box.

More speculation is at AllThingsD.

December 16, 2012

How to use Siri directions with Google Maps, no tweaking required

Siri’s feature that allows users to speak to find directions is great, but if you find yourself using Google’s new mapping solution instead of Apple’s, you may find yourself a little frustrated when Siri loads up the latter. Luckily, the folks at JailbreakNation showed us how to use Siri to launch directions with Google Maps. A command like “take me to the nearest Apple store” will prompt Siri to launch Apple Maps to not take you to your desired location. However, you simply add “via transit” to the end of your command to use Google Maps. So, a simple “Take me to the nearest Apple store via transit” will do just the trick. You can check it out demoed on video below:

Don’t miss: MapsOpener jailbreak tweak sets Google Maps as default maps app

December 15, 2012

Some iPhone users who’ve tried the new Google Maps already will want to use the app instead of the often-criticized Apple Maps. Sadly, Apple doesn’t yet offer a way to make Google Maps the default application to allow iOS users to choose which mapping app opens when map URLs are clicked or using Siri.

As expected, the crafty folks in the jailbreak community have already cooked up a new tweak called “MapsOpener” that will make Google Maps the default. You can check out the tweak courtesy of Hashbang Productions and available via Cydia’s Big Boss repo. As we told you earlier this week, jailbreak tweak FullForce will also make Google Maps scale to the iPad’s large screen. Check out MapsOpener demoed below.

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December 10, 2012

December 8, 2012

Latest Chrome developer build hints at Google Now integration

Apple is set to get another taste of Google Now—the Siri competitor out of Mountain View. This time, in Chrome for Mac. Google Plus user François Beaufort discovered (via CNET) references to Google Now in the latest Chromium build yesterday that said “creating a skeleton for Google Now for Chrome implementation.” It’s not clear how long it will take for the new feature to roll out, but the code hints to Google Now’s features appearing in Google Chrome’s notification cards.

December 7, 2012

We’ve known about the Apple Store at Hysan Place shopping center in Causeway Bay, Hong Kong since before August, but today the folks out of Cupertino have given us an official confirmation thanks to signage in front of the store. As several readers noticed, Apple is bragging the store as “An opening you simply can’t miss.” There’s no word on an exact date for the opening, but Casey Lau reported on Twitter that it would be before Christmas Day. The store is 3.3 miles away from the first Hong Kong store in IFC center, and it boasts two-story, 30-foot glass windows and a towering entrance. We’ll update when we get wind of more information (Update: Official opening is Saturday). In the mean time, check out the gallery of the signage below:

Source: Tipster Jon, BL, Galen, Instagram, (1)IFOAppleStore

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December 6, 2012

Following our readers finding several of their new iMacs labeled as assembled in the United States, Apple CEO Tim Cook revealed in a Bloomberg Business Week profile that Apple plans to bring back some Mac production to the U.S. in 2013 and is planning to spend a lot of money to do so.

“Next year we are going to bring some production to the U.S. on the Mac. We’ve been working on this for a long time, and we were getting closer to it. It will happen in 2013. We’re really proud of it. We could have quickly maybe done just assembly, but it’s broader because we wanted to do something more substantial. So we’ll literally invest over $100 million. This doesn’t mean that Apple will do it ourselves, but we’ll be working with people, and we’ll be investing our money.”

Last night, we discovered iMacs were shipping from Fremont, Calif., in what looks to be early testing by the company. Cook confirmed that Apple won’t necessarily be putting Macs together themselves, but it will spend “over $100 million” to make it happen.

Do you remember NBC anchor Brian Williams interviewing Cook at the Grand Central Apple Store? NBC confirmed today’s news is the subject matter. The interview will air on NBC tonight at 10 p.m. EST.

Screen Shot 2012-12-06 at 8.59.36 AM. .mov file

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December 5, 2012

Qualcomm announces smaller, battery efficient NFC chip perfect for the next iPhone

Chipmaker Qualcomm has announced its latest Near Field Communication chip this evening that is being boasted as ultra-low power, with a footprint 50 percent smaller than other chips, at a significant cost savings. NFC technology has been long rumored to land in devices out of Cupertino, Calif.-based Apple, allowing customers to establish connection between devices or for mobile payments (see: Google Wallet). While there’s no concrete evidence this is a chip Apple may use, its set of specifications certainly make it sound appealing. However, with Phil Schiller’s comments in September, it may be a while before the company factors NFC technology into its devices. “It’s not clear that NFC is the solution to any current problem. Passbook does the kinds of things customers need today,” said Schiller shortly after the iPhone 5 event. At any rate, we’ve seen prototypes that show Apple is at least looking into the technology. Qualcomm said its new chip will begin hitting OEMs in Q3 2013, but the question is: when will Apple choose to include NFC? The full press release is below:

Source: Engadget

Apple and HTC’s [redacted] published by Samsung

Ina Fried at AllThingsD:

According to the document, both sides are getting a nonexclusive, nontransferrable and non-sublicensable license to certain of the other’s patents. Apple also agrees not to sue HTC over certain covered products, though the specific products are redacted.

The agreement also appears to exclude any of Apple’s design patents as well as coverage on any products that are defined as cloning an Apple product.

Samsung put the document into public view with most areas blocked out. Maybe Samsung released it to show its products shouldn’t receive an injunction at the hands of Apple. Check it out below:

The folks at iPhone 5 Mod now offer a 3-in-1 Lightning Camera Connection Kit just for the photo geeks in the crowd, allowing you to upload pictures and video to a Lightning-enabled iPhone or iPad. Available for $23.90, the connector packs a USB cable that connects directly into a camera via USB, an SD card, or micro-SD card. While Apple offers a camera connection kit —not supporting Lightning— that connects with a camera via USB or an SD card (better value 30-pin versions on Amazon), this seems like the better offering because it supports three formats and Lightning for a cheaper price. iPhone 5 Mod also offers the 3-in-1 Cable Pro, supporting users to charge their devices with Apple’s Lightning, 30-pic technology, or standard microUSB, for $13.90. We received a number of Lightning items from iPhone5mod.com that worked well.

Source: iPhone 5 Mod (1), (2)

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Casio introduces $180 G-Shock watch that pairs with the iPhone via Bluetooth

Casio announced a new watch to its G-Shock line that pairs with the iPhone via Bluetooth 4 to display users with information, including synced time, calls and email alert, that can later be dismissed by double-tapping the screen. Available for $180, the GB6900AA watch is resistant to shock and water like the rest of the G-Shock line and has a feature that lets users stop misplacing their iPhone, as the watch will let off a notification when the handset is out of range. Casio also brags about a battery life of two years if the watch is connected via Bluetooth for 12 hours per day. The GB6900AA is now available at Macy’s, Bloomingdale’s, directly from Casio’s website, and other independent retailers. The G-Shock iPhone app is required to sync among first use. I’ve been quite the fan of G-Shock watches, so you’ll definitely find this on my watch-list.

Via: Engadget

Source: Casio

China Mobile president: technology isn’t holding back iPhone 5 launch, but agreements with Apple

The iPhone 5 is set to ship in China December 14 on the nation’s second and third largest carriers: China Unicom and China Telecom. However absent from the launch is China Mobile, the nation’s (and world’s) largest telecom that boasts a user base of 703 million subscribers. It’s presumed the reason why the iPhone hasn’t yet launched on China Mobile is because of the network’s specific TD-SCDMA technology that isn’t used elsewhere, however that may not be the case. Unwired View reports today that while speaking at China Mobile’s 2012 Developer Conference, the company’s president Li Yue stated “technology is not a problem, [it’s] mainly about business model and benefit-sharing issues.”

Of course Yue’s comment doesn’t necessarily mean we can bank on the iPhone 5 landing on China Mobile any time soon, but it does show that Apple and the company have at least held advanced discussions, including pricing and shared revenue. In 2011, the Wall Street Journal reported that a China Mobile iPhone launch was getting closer. Additionally, China Mobile chairman Wang Jianzhou said his company is in constant talks with Apple, and  Apple CEO Tim Cook visited China Mobile’s headquarters last summer to presumably discuss the possibility of supporting 4G-LTE radio technology. The iPhone 5, with its accompanying 4G, was expected to launch on China Mobile, but never did/still hasn’t.

China Mobile is important to Apple and its aggressive attack into China. The carrier would add a slew of customers that may otherwise be looking to Samsung to fulfill their smartphone needs. That’s not to say China Mobile is not harboring iPhone users like T-Mobile here stateside, with 15 million customers using unlocked iPhones as of Spring this year. Today’s note that technology is not holding the iPhone back from China Mobile is definitely interesting, as we presume China Mobile is working with or against Apple’s strong arm. [Unwired View]

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