Jordan Kahn

@JordanKahn

Senior Editor, 9to5Mac – 9to5Google – 9to5Toys

Contact Jordan with news tips and long-winded complaints at Jordan@9to5mac.com.  

Jordan writes about all things Apple as a senior editor for 9to5Mac. He also covers Google for 9to5Google.com and the latest gear and deals on 9to5Toys.com.

Send tips to: Jordan@9to5mac.com Twitter: @JordanKahn FB: https://www.facebook.com/makamachine SoundCloud: https://soundcloud.com/makamachine

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June 4, 2013

ComScore today reported its numbers for smartphone subscribers in the U.S. for the three month period ending in April with Apple experiencing the biggest gains in both categories. The main theme of the report is much the same as we heard in its January and February reports– Apple is up and gaining at the expense of Google and just about everyone else.

When it comes to market share by platform, comScore reports that Google continues its lead with 52.3% (down 0.3 percent since the January quarter), while Apple experienced a slight gain of 1.4 percentage points increasing from 37.8% to 39.2%. That’s compared to BlackBerry at just 5.1% (down from 5.9% last quarter) and 3.0% for Microsoft (down from 3.1%).

Apple also captured the biggest gain for smartphone subscribers by OEM, positioning itself as the No.1 smartphone vendor in the U.S. with 39.2% of the market compared to Samsung’s 22% during the three month period. Filling out the final three positions is HTC, Motorola, and LG: expand full story

As expected, Google just started rolling out its brand new inbox to iOS users after first introducing us to the new category-based design last week. While its not a tabbed design like on the desktop, much like the Android app that just started rolling out iOS users can now access the new feature that groups emails into separate inboxes by selecting categories from the app’s side navigation bar.

 Meet the new inbox: If you’ve enabled the new inbox, your mail is now grouped into categories so that you can see what’s new at a glance and decide which emails you want to read when. Primary mail is shown first and it’s easy to access and keep track of email in other categories by opening the menu. Configure this feature by going to Gmail.com on your computer.

Today’s Gmail update also brings improved notifications allowing you to customize what emails you receive notifications for: expand full story

Apple today published a report on its website detailing the “Economic and Fiscal Impacts Generated by Apple in Cupertino – Current Facilities and Apple Campus 2.” 

Apple-Campus-2-economic-impact-report-May-2013Apple notes that the report, which details a number of topics from job creation to construction of its new spaceship campus, was put together by Keyser Marston Associates, Inc. (KMA) for the City of Cupertino under contract with Apple Inc.

With net annual sales in excess of $156 billion, 16,000 employees currently based in the Cupertino area, and annual purchases from local Silicon Valley-based businesses of $4.6 billion, Apple is a cornerstone of the Silicon Valley economy and of the fiscal resources of the City of Cupertino.

Much of the report focuses on the economic impacts and future contributions of Apple’s currently under construction Apple Campus 2. In the report, Apple details how its new campus will “add an estimated 7,400 new high-quality jobs,” increase revenues for the local economy, and enhance tax revenues for the city and surrounding areas. Apple says it will support 24,000 jobs in Cupertino alone when the campus is ready in 2016.

It also detailed investments being made in public improvements surrounding its new campus including infrastructure and utility improvements and its transportation program: expand full story

9to5toys 

We’ve told you several times in recent months about Intel’s next-generation Haswell processors that are largely expected to replace Apple’s current Ivy Bridge offerings in the next round of Macs. Now, ahead of Apple’s expected WWDC announcements, Intel has just officially launched its next-gen processors. The company confirmed that quad-core versions of the chips are available now with availability of ultrabooks, all-in-ones, laptops and desktops planned for this summer.

Intel says the processors provide up to a 50 percent improvement in battery life (the biggest gain in the history of Intel’s processors), and double the graphics performance of previous generation chips thanks to its ‘Iris’ technology.

Delivering Intel’s largest generation-over-generation gain in battery life enablement in company history, 4th generation Intel Core processors can bring an 50 percent improvement in battery life over the previous generation in active workloads when watching movies or surfing the Internet, and two to three times improvement in standby battery life. For some systems coming to market this year, over 9 hours of active use battery life or 10 to 13 days of standby with fresh data on a single charge is expected.

Earlier this year we saw stats from early performance tests showing Haswell will provide some notable performance boosts for MacBooks, and we’ve also heard reports that the 4th-gen Intel processors will be headed to iMacs and Mac minis towards the end of the year.

In a more recent report, analyst Ming-Chi Kuo claimed Apple will introduce new MacBook Pro and Air updates next week at WWDC that will include an upgrade to Haswell. Yesterday, we posted even more evidence with SKUs showing that Apple is likely planning a MacBook refresh. expand full story

June 3, 2013

While it certainly has some competition in this arena, major Apple accessory maker Belkin today announced a new ‘Grip Power Battery Case’ for iPhone 5. Similar to popular offerings from some of Belkin’s competitors including Mophie and Otterbox, the case builds in a 2000 mAh battery that claims to double the battery life of the device.

Belkin says the Grip Power case includes a shock-resistant bumper with secure-hold TPU grip, an anti-glare camera ring, and four color combinations including Civic Blue/Stone and Purple Lightning/Fountain Blue, Blacktop/Gravel and Whiteout/Blacktop.

Belkin is selling the case for $99, slightly less than Mophie and Otterbox, through its website and BestBuy.com. Full list of features below: expand full story

As expected, Google updated its Chrome for iOS app to version 27 today after releasing updates for both desktop and Android late last month. The update includes a number of new improvements, the most notable of which is voice search that allows users to take advantage of the conversational voice search features Google already rolled out to Mac. Google previously announced the feature (pictured above), would be arriving on iOS, but today the updated app is officially available to all on the App Store.

With today’s update you will not only be able to search with your voice right within Chrome (a feature already available to users through the Google Search iOS app), you’ll also get “answers spoken back to you” for specific search results. Google first showed off the new conversational search features at its I/O event last month.

Other improvements in today’s update include faster voice recognition “with text streamed on the fly,” faster page reloads even on slow networks, and the usual stability and security enhancements. expand full story

9to5google 
In the midst of the U.S. government’s interest in Apple and other large multinationals that “avoid” paying taxes in the U.S. or repatriating funds stored abroad, RudeBaguette.com notes that the French society of authors, composers, and music publishers (SACEM) has announced that Apple owes around 5 million euros in unpaid taxes.

The funds apparently come from unpaid royalties on iPad sales for 2011 that France and other EU countries, such as Germany, collect for devices capable of transferring and displaying copyrighted material:

To give a bit of a background, the copie privée is a tax in several countries including France & Germany that is applied to all digital devices that can transfer, read, or otherwise make use of copyrighted material. The tax goes to the SACEM, which then takes the lump sum of all the taxes collected and deals them out to authors, creators, producers, actors, etc. accordingly… the problem here isn’t so much the tax, but that Apple actually charged the consumers this tax, and didn’t pay it out to the SACEM.

The news comes as reports claim France is beginning to crack down on tax schemes of large companies with plans to force  Apple, Google, and others to disclose details of foreign business activities and tax practices: expand full story

electrek 

May 31, 2013

Image (1) iad.jpg for post 16500While Tim Cook didn’t seem to place too much emphasis on advertising being a core business for Apple when asked about mobile advertising during his recent D11 interview, BusinessInsider reports it has heard from sources that Apple is gearing up to launch an ad exchange service similar to recent efforts by Twitter and Facebook:

We heard it from an executive who is one of the biggest players in online advertising… an ad exchange would work by allowing advertisers to target users as they enter the Apple eco-system on their iPads, MacBooks, various web sites and apps. The system would alert advertisers that an Apple user arrived. Any advertiser tracking that user with a cookie (a piece of software that records previous web sites you’ve looked at) could then bid to serve an ad targeting that user.

When asked why Apple wasn’t making money off its mobile ad business in comparison to other companies such as Facebook, CEO Tim Cook told D11 attendees that the focus for advertising was making developers money, not Apple. Cook said the company would continue doing things in advertising only if it contributed to its developer community, but according to several execs in the advertising industry quoted in the report, Apple could have much bigger plans for its ad business in the months to come.  expand full story

May 30, 2013

Question is 36:38 in

With Tim Cook teasing the Jony Ive redesign of iOS 7 that we exclusively told you would be introducing a new flat design for iOS, we thought it would be interesting to get former Windows lead Steven Sinofsky’s opinion on the changes. While Sinofsky left Microsoft after 20+ years back in November of last year, he was involved in the latest releases of Windows 8 that many argue helped pioneer the flat UI design Apple is now moving towards. Our own Mark Gurman asked Sinofsky his thoughts on a new flat iOS 7 during his interview at the D11 conference earlier today.  expand full story

9to5toys 

After launching its new Google Play All Access music streaming service earlier this month at Google I/O, Google’s head of Android Sundar Pichai just confirmed during his interview at the D11 conference that the service will be making its way to iOS. Sundar said the service would be available on iOS in the next few weeks.

Google announced its new ‘All Access’ $9.99/month streaming service as part of Google Play Music at its Google I/O keynote presentation a few weeks ago. The service offers curated playlists, but also allows users to access a radio feature that automatically creates endless radio stations with the ability to remove unwanted songs.

Since launching, the service unofficially arrived on iOS last week via an update to the third-party gMusic client for iPhone and iPad. The app is one of the more popular Google Music clients allowing iOS users to access Google’s music services, but today is the first time Google has confirmed its plans to bring the service to Apple device’s through its own app. expand full story

Apple is making quite a few quiet announcements today. Earlier it introduced a new stripped down $229 fifth-gen iPod touch to replace the fourth-gen touch and also announced 100M iPod touches sold to date. Apple has also now made a change to its education pricing on non Retina MacBook Pros by dropping the $1099 entry level price point to $999. That makes the price of the device $200 cheaper than Apple charges to non education customers.

Apple has not yet made an official announcement, but several 9to5 readers noticed the pricing change early this morning. The second up 2.9GHz MacBook Pro is also now selling for $1,299 ($200 off retail compared to the $100 off most models are available for).

While the new pricing is of course only available to those that qualify for an education discount, we’ve been seeing the same deal pop up on 9to5Toys quite frequently.

expand full story

9to5google 

May 29, 2013

Lisa-P-JacksonFollowing Tim Cook’s announcement last night that former EPA administrator Lisa Jackson would be joining Apple to head up environmental responsibilities, Greenpeace has issued a statement calling the hire “a bold move” that could “make Apple the top environmental leader in the tech sector”:

“Apple has made a bold move in hiring Lisa Jackson, a proven advocate with a track record of combating toxic waste and the dirty energy that causes global warming, two of Apple’s biggest challenges as it continues to grow,” says Greenpeace’s Senior IT Analyst Gary Cook.  ”Jackson can make Apple the top environmental leader in the tech sector by helping the company use its influence to push electric utilities and governments to provide the clean energy that both Apple and America need right now.”

Apple has come under pressure from Greenpeace a few times in recent years and at one point accused the company of powering its iCloud service with ‘dirty coal energy.’ Last year Apple dropped to No.6 in the organization’s 18th annual Guide to Green Electronics due to lack of transparency on a number of environmental related issues including GHG emission reporting, clean energy advocacy, and further information on its management of toxic chemicals.

Jackson said she is “thrilled to be joining the team” and to continue Apple’s commitment to the environment in a statement to Politico following Cook’s announcement (below): expand full story

electrek 

As expected from a previous leak earlier this month, Google just announced on its official Gmail blog that it’s rolling out a brand new UI for Gmail on both the web and mobile that brings a new Categories based UI for easier organization of emails. The Gmail-App-Categories-01screenshots below line up with the images that we posted last week showing new customizable Categories that users can assign to manage emails according to content. For example: ‘Social’ for emails related to social networks, ‘Promotions’ for promotional material, ‘Notifications’ for reservations, bills, etc, and ‘Forums’ for mailing lists and forums.

On the desktop, the new inbox groups your mail into categories which appear as different tabs. You simply choose which categories you want and voilà! Your inbox is organized in a way that lets you see what’s new at a glance and decide which emails you want to read when.. You can easily customize the new inbox – select the tabs you want from all five to none, drag-and-drop to move messages between tabs, set certain senders to always appear in a particular tab and star messages so that they also appear in the Primary tab.

The update is not only rolling out to desktop users, but also to iPhone and iPad and mobile devices running Android 4.0 and up. On the mobile apps, users will first see their “Primary” inbox and can switch to other categories using the side navigation bar. Google says the new inbox is rolling out in the next few weeks but users will be able to try it sooner with a new “Configure inbox” option in Settings. expand full story

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