About the Author

Jordan Kahn

@JordanKahn

Senior Editor

9to5Mac / 9to5Google / 9to5Toys / Electrek.co

Jordan writes about all things Apple as Senior Editor of 9to5Mac. He covers Google for 9to5Google.com, the best gadgets and deals on 9to5Toys.com, and delivers a weekly roundup of EV and solar news on Electrek.co. He also co-authors 9to5Mac’s weekly Logic Pros series covering music making with Apple devices and makes music as one half of Toronto-based Makamachine.

Contact Jordan with news tips and long-winded complaints:  

Jordan Kahn's Favorite Gear

October 15, 2013

Now that Apple has made the rumored October 22nd date for its iPad event official, it’s now time to seriously start thinking about trading in your old iPad in order to get the most for your money. The chart above from NextWorth is a little taste of what you can expect from trade-in values for iPads in the coming weeks, so if you’re planning on pulling the trigger, now is definitely the time.

Resale prices for previous generation iPads will inevitably drop following the introduction of new iPads– as they have for iPhones since the introduction of the new 5s and 5c last month– so we’ve put together a list of the best places around to get maximum value for your aging iPads, as well as some exclusive promotion codes to get a bonus 10% on your trade-in through a couple popular services.  expand full story

Google Maps for iOS updated w/ quick access to navigation, new languages, & more

Google updated its Google Maps app for iPhone and iPad today with a few new features as the app moves to version 2.3.4. Google says the updated app includes “Faster access to navigation,” which includes new overviews for traffic and routes.

The updated app also includes a new Tips and Tricks section available from the side menu and support for new languages, including: Arabic and Hebrew. Google also notes that the new supported languages will offer voice guidance “where available.”

A full list of what’s new below:

What’s New in Version 2.3.4

● Faster access to navigation, complete with route and traffic overview ● Tips and Tricks available in the side menu ● Arabic and Hebrew now supported, including voice guidance in navigation, where available ● Bug fixes

Flextronics could be prepping for new US made Mac Pro w/ hiring spree for “next generation desktop computer”

After Apple announced earlier this year that it would soon begin assembling Made-in-the-USA Macs in Texas and later confirmed it would be the new Mac Pro, it looks like Apple’s manufacturing partner Flextronics is currently preparing for the device’s launch later this year. Austin American-Statesman (via MacRumors) reports that Flextronics recently presented plans to government officials in Austin that would see the company hire up to 1700 employees to manufacture a “next generation desktop computer.” While Apple wasn’t specifically mentioned in the report, the report speculates Apple is the likely client after confirming that Dell is no longer building PCs in the US:

In its presentation, Flextronics, which builds computers, smartphones and other products for a range of brands, specified only that the foreign trade zone designation would help it move production of a “next generation desktop computer” from China to Austin.

The presentation did little to identify an exact brand. A spokesman for Dell Inc., which at one time produced desktops and laptops in North Austin factories, said it no longer builds them in the U.S… However, Flextronics’ presentation did add fuel to the ongoing rumors that Apple Inc.’s new line of Macintosh desktop computers could be built in Austin. Apple CEO Tim Cook said in May that the company would spend about 100 million to move its Mac production to Texas, but he did not disclose a specific site.

That would put manufacturing of the new Mac Pro less than a mile away from Apple’s newly renovated Austin campus that houses mainly customer support and sales staff.

There’s no solid proof that Flextronics new hiring spree is for the Mac Pro, but it looks likely as Apple is expected to begin shipping the redesigned Mac later this year. Latest rumors have it that Apple will show off the new Mac Pro once again at its upcoming iPad event on October 22, while a report this morning claimed it could become available to customers as early as November 15.

October 14, 2013

Cricket Wireless will begin carrying iPhone 5s & 5c on October 25

A number of regional carriers in the U.S. previously announced October 1st availability of Apple’s new iPhone 5s and 5c, and today AT&T-owned prepaid carrier Cricket Wireless becomes the latest.

The carrier announced today that it will begin carrying both the iPhone 5s and iPhone 5c later this month on October 25:

Cricket Communications, Inc. today announced Cricket Wireless will offer iPhone 5s, the most forward thinking smartphone in the world, and iPhone 5c, the most colorful iPhone yet, to customers beginning on October 25, 2013. Customers may pre-register interest today at www.mycricket.com/register. For more information please visit: www.mycricket.com. For more information on iPhone, please visit: www.apple.com/iphone.

October 11, 2013

Yelp iOS app replaces Home tab w/ new toolbar for quick access to reviews, photos, and check-ins

Yelp updated its iOS app today with a slightly tweaked UI that makes it easier for users to quickly post reviews, photos and check-in at locations. The app is getting rid of its old Home tab and now by default loads up the “Nearby” tab. In addition, the the tab in the middle along the bottom of the app now launches quick access to Check In, Review, and Photo buttons (as pictured above).

The updated app also includes “larger notification photos, better scrolling performance, updated icons and animations.”

What’s New in Version 7.2.0

New in v7.2 – We said goodbye to our homepage and hello to a beautiful new navigation that makes it even easier for you to discover great places nearby, add photos and reviews, and check in to your favorite businesses. – We also added tons of polish to our app, including larger notification photos, better scrolling performance, updated icons and animations, and a whole lot more!

Update: We have a winner!

9to5Mac is teaming up with dbrand inc, makers of quality custom vinyl skins for all of your devices, to giveaway an unlocked gold 64GB iPhone 5s to one lucky reader. We’ll also be including brand new gold skins just launched by dbrand that will let you give your iPad or other favorite device the gold look too.

Gold has definitely been one of the most popular of all the new iPhone colors with stock almost nonexistent in retail stores since the launch of the device late last month. Since gold is best, dbrand has created custom gold skins not just for iPhone, but for iPad and a number of other popular devices too: expand full story

October 10, 2013

Apple’s first retail store in Turkey set to open in Istanbul in January

As previously announced by Tim Cook earlier this year, Apple is preparing to open its first retail store in Turkey with a new store currently under construction in Istanbul. The Wall Street Journal reports that Apple has picked up around 21,000 square feet of space inside the Zorlu shopping center between Burberry and Louis Vuitton stores.

The store is expected to open in early 2014 and would make for the 13th country that Apple currently operates at least one retail store in. Apple now has over 400 retails stores worldwide and previously announced plans to open 30 new stores this year along with relocating 20 stores to bigger properties to accommodate customers.

(via donanimhaber)

iTunes Radio begins sporadically rolling out in Canada

Earlier this month we reported that an iTunes Radio launch in at least Canada was on the way and today the service has officially started arriving for some users. While we’ve only been able to confirm availability in Canada first hand, others are reporting that iTunes Radio is also starting to roll out in the UK:

https://twitter.com/applefortytwo/status/386284633157300224

Bloomberg reported earlier this week that Apple was targeting an iTunes Radio launch in several new countries for 2014. According to the report, Apple was expecting to rollout the new radio service in The United Kingdom, Canada, New Zealand, and Australia by early next year.

Apple officially launched its iTunes Radio streaming service in the U.S. alongside the launch of iOS 7 late last month. Not long after the company announced that it recorded 11 million unique listeners in just a few days and confirmed the service will soon expand into other markets.

iOS 7 doesn’t require an update to enable access to the service in new countries, but a quick restart of your device or the Music app should make iTunes Radio appear if it’s available in your location.

Update: It’s unclear if the service is actually beginning to roll out in Canada or if there is a server side issue causing iTunes Radio to appear in the Music app. Shortly after appearing in Canada the service stopped functioning:

October 9, 2013

T-Mobile unveiled a new offering that will provide global data coverage allowing users to access their data plan in over 100 countries at no extra charge (via Engadget). CEO John Legere has been hinting at the announcement on his Twitter account in recent days: “Today is the day! The day we change the way the world uses their phones!”

This new plan will allow Simple Choice customers to get unlimited 2G data and texting in supported Simple Global countries. Voice calls on the plan cost $.20 per minute for in-country calls. There are no extra fees for this service, as it is included in all Simple Choice plans automatically.

The “un-carrier” also announced a few other changes to its plans, including a new international talk and text option from the US to all other Simple Global countries. That will cost an additional $10/month and include $.20/minute voice calls and unlimited texting. Adding this option to your plan will also enable unlimited calling to landlines in over 70 Simple Global countries for free.

Finally, T-Mobile announced that its 4G LTE network is available nationwide and reaches over 200 million potential customers.

Twitter teams up with Comcast/NBC for ‘See It’ feature to watch and record TV shows

Twitter is teaming up with Comcast to integrate a new feature called “See It” that will allow Comcast Xfinity subscribers to watch shows and schedule DVR recordings directly from Twitter. The companies announced the partnership today and announced that the new “See It” feature will begin appearing for users on Twitter in next month.

Today, @Comcast and @NBCUniversal are announcing a partnership with Twitter that lets users tune in to a TV show directly from a Tweet. Comcast will give Xfinity TV customers the ability to do several things such as change the channel, set the DVR and play a show On Demand, directly from an expanded Tweet. Called See It, the feature will debut with NBCUniversal offerings including The Voice and Sunday Night Football.

While only Xfinity subscribers will be able to click the See It button embedded in tweets to schedule DVR recordings and view the content on their set-top box, other users can be directed to the NBC website or app. The “See It” technology, which was developed by Comcast, is first rolling out on Twitter with NBC programming, but Comcast is working with others to make See It an industry-standard technology:

See It is designed to integrate with other video distribution partners, television networks and websites. We look forward to working with Comcast to extend this offering to other partners who will connect more great content to Twitter. Ultimately, we want to make watching TV along with Twitter even more fun. We’re looking forward to sharing more details about this experience in the weeks to come. You can find more information about See It here.

China Mobile cell tower

While a possible deal with China Mobile, one of the world’s largest telecoms, was rumored for quite sometime leading up to launch of the new iPhones, the company said in August that it was still working out “commercial and technical issues” with Apple. Today, Bloomberg points us to an Apple job listing in China that provides some evidence that the company is indeed preparing to launch the iPhone on the carrier’s network:

The manager, who will be based in Beijing, will “support and drive the carrier approval of mobile phones,” Apple said in an advertisement on its China website. The position seeks experience with TD-SCDMA, China Mobile’s own third-generation standard that isn’t used by other carriers.

On top of TD-SCDMA, the job listing is also seeking an engineer with experience in TD-LTE, which is the LTE standard that China Mobile has quickly been rolling out. Back in August the often reliable KGI analyst Mingchi Kuo claimed that Apple was ramping up TD-LTE supported iPhone 5c production and estimated that the iPhone 5s and 5c on China Mobile could account for penetration of 25% and 35% of total shipments for the two devices. Currently the carrier has approximately 756 million subscribers, around 63% of the 1.2 billion wireless subscribers in China. expand full story

Google Cloud Platform simplifies server-side development for iOS w/ ‘Mobile Backend Starter’

Google announced today on its Cloud Platform blog that it is rolling out its Google App Engine application called Mobile Backend Starter that first debuted for Android developers back in June. Google says the application helps to simplify the server-side development process for developers adding cloud services through Google Cloud Platform and it does so by providing Mobile Backend and Objective-C client libraries for everything from storing data in the cloud to sending device-to-device push notifications and authenticating Google accounts. In other words, it’s a ready-to-deploy, general purpose cloud backend along with Android and iOS clients with client-side framework classes. This allows devs to implement a number of cloud services into their apps without ever having to worry about coding those features themselves.

  • Optional server-side coding: Control your cloud service using Android and iOS client libraries.
  • Cloud Datastore: Store millions of objects in the cloud and manage them from your app.
  • Push Notifications: Send and broadcast objects as messages via Apple Push Notifications and Google Cloud Messaging.
  • Event Driven Programming: Create real-time interactive user experiences using Continuous Queries.
  • User authentication Authenticate users using Google Accounts.
  • Per-object access: Prevent users from accessing private data using our authentication model.
  • Built to scale: Mobile backend runs on App Engine infrastructure to scale to millions of users within hours (App Engine pricing applies).

Google is making the source code for the app available on Github for developers to freely play with, and that will include the source code for both the backend and iOS and Android clients.

Google walked through the process of getting Mobile Backend Starter setup on an iPhone or iPad:

Getting Started

You can try out the Mobile Backend Starter on an iPhone or iPad in just a few steps (further details here):

1. Provision your backend on App Engine

2. Download the iOS client zip file (or clone from GitHub repository)

3. Run the sample on a physical device (note: the sample does not run on the iOS simulator)

You can learn more about Mobile Backend Starter for iOS here.

October 8, 2013

Last month we reported that Apple’s Senior Vice President of Design Jony Ive had teamed up with designer & friend Marc Newson to create one of a kind pieces for Bono’s (Product) RED charity auction scheduled for November 23 at Sotheby’s New York. Those pieces included one-of-a-kind 18k sold rose gold Apple EarPods, and Steinway & Sons piano, and other unique items designed by the pair. Today we get a look at another beautifully designed product set to go up for auction next month.

In the gallery below we get a look at the gorgeous aluminum Leica M for (RED) designed by Ive and Newson that features “a laser machined aluminum body and an anodized aluminum outer shell.” The one of a kind camera took 85 days to create with the team going through 561 models and nearly 1000 prototype parts: expand full story

Samsung-Gavel

With a U.S. import ban previously issued by the ITC set to lock out certain Samsung devices at midnight last night, Bloomberg reports that the company has failed to obtain a veto from President Barack Obama:

The Korean company had argued that the ban should be overturned on public policy grounds, especially since a similar order it won against Apple was vetoed by the administration in August. Samsung can now seek a delay in the ban from a U.S. appeals court that will consider the entire case on legal grounds.

“After carefully weighing policy considerations, including the impact on consumers and competition, advice from agencies, and information from interested parties, I have decided to allow” the import ban to proceed, Obama’s designee, U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman, said in a statement today.

In August, the US International Trade Commission ruled in favor of Apple and issued a sales ban on certain infringing Samsung devices in a long-running case that stemmed from a countersuit originally filed by Apple back in 2011. The news came shortly after the Obama administration’s decision to veto an ITC import ban on certain iPhone and iPad models that Samsung won in a separate case. Like Apple, Samsung was going to attempt to get a veto on the decision by the US President, the only person with the power to overturn ITC import bans.  expand full story

Yahoo Mail is officially 16 years old today and to celebrate the company announced on its blog that it is rolling out an entirely new Mail experience on iOS as well as on the desktop and Android. A popular feature of many other mail clients, Yahoo Mail now includes the ability to view email threads as conversations:

We’re introducing “conversations” for those who prefer to view emails grouped in threads. At the end of the day, being able to see an entire conversation can save you quite a bit of time. Context is king.

Perhaps the most notable addition, however, is the features previously only available to Mail Plus customers. That includes a free 1TB of storage for all users: expand full story

October 7, 2013

Camera+ iOS app adds full-resolution burst-mode & new iOS 7 filter pack

The popular Camera+ iOS app from developer taptaptap gets an update today, jumping from version 4.0.2 to Version 4.2 (just for the fun of it according to the release notes below), and adds a few notable new features.

On top of fixing a bug that crashed the app when using burst-mode, the update includes support for full-resolution bust-mode photos. That includes the iPhone 5, iPhone 5s, and the “unapologetically poorly-selling iPhone 5c,” according to taptaptap.

The app also adds a new effects pack that includes Apple’s new iOS 7 filters:

So we added a new effects pack that includes all the filters that Apple’s standard Camera and Photo apps include (for users on iOS 7). Two hours of coding (and eight trivial Core Image filters later), the Standard Effects Pack was born.

The updated Camera+ is available on the App Store now.

What’s New in Version 4.2

So the previous version of Camera+ had a little bug where burst-mode shooting would crash. We fixed that.

We almost stopped there and just called it version 4.0.3, but then figured that it’d be the perfect time to boost burst-mode snaps to full-resolution on devices that could handle it (like the iPhone 5, iPhone 5s, and the unapologetically poorly-selling iPhone 5c).

That was enough to justify calling it version 4.1. And then we thought about jumping on the bandwagon where we put Camera+ out as a whole new app and let existing customers pay for it all over again. And of course there’d be the ensuing sh__storm where those customers felt cheated and we’d have to backpedal and reverse that shortsighted decision.

So it was Clear that that would’ve been a knuckleheaded move so instead, we decided to treat our lovely customers fairly and make Camera+ 4.1 a free update as we’ve always done. But then we felt like it was all give and no take… so to make us feel better about giving-in too easily, we chose to call it version 4.2. That’ll teach you to mess with us.

Then we felt bad about jumping ahead two version numbers and giving you little for your troubles. So we added a new effects pack that includes all the filters that Apple’s standard Camera and Photo apps include (for users on iOS 7). Two hours of coding (and eight trivial Core Image filters later), the Standard Effects Pack was born.

Beats Music streaming service launching on iOS in the next few months

After a bit of restructuring and some acquisitions to help accelerate development of its Beats Music streaming service, an executive at the company confirmed to TNW today that the service will officially launch on iOS, as well as on the web and Android, in the next few months.

President and COO Luke Wood also shared some details on how the service will work compared with iTunes Radio and other competitive streaming services. Wood says the service will “focus really heavily on playlists,” but also utilize a “a perfect harmony between the algorithm and human curation”:

Wood emphasized that Beats Music would be different and based around “a very specific idea”. The service is focused on curation, rather than forcing users to search blindly for new tracks or artists that they might like.

“We’re talking about real depth of personalization and knowing who I am, who you are, what we’re listening to, what we like, what we’ve listened to before and then offering up music that is highly relevant to our taste profile,” he added… “You need to start with a great editorial team that has a point of view, but we want to have a situation where we can really scale to the depth of your appetite,” he said. “If you really love music, we want something that can go deep with you for a really long time. And that requires a perfect harmony between the algorithm and human curation. Between the man and the machine.”

The mix of curated playlists and algorithm doesn’t sound unlike Apple’s own iTunes Radio streaming service launched in the US last month alongside iOS 7. Apple announced 11 million unique listeners in just a few days following the service’s launch, and will likely soon expand into other markets.

Beats Music, like iTunes Radio, will first launch in the US.

Will the Mac go touch? Unlikely, but here’s what a 32″ 4K IGZO Touch Mac looks like

It looks like Sharp is planning full support for OS X in its upcoming 32-inch 4K IGZO touchscreen LCD LED monitor (PN-K322B) expected to launch in the US this fall. Sharp previously announced the 36 mm thin 4K panel with pen support in July, but Macotakara.jp snapped the photo above of Sharp demoing the display running OS X from a connected MacBook at the Ceatec Japan 2013 show over the weekend.

From the translated report, it sounds like Sharp plans compatible OS X drivers as a download in 1-2 months.

Apart from touch support, the monitor is much the same as the 32-inch 4K IGZO display that we were quite impressed with when Sharp first showed them off at CES in January.

You can get a better look at the display from earlier this year in the video below:

October 4, 2013

NFL Mobile iOS app adds access to live content from NFL.com

The official NFL Mobile app has been updated today to version 8.6 and with it comes the ability to access live content from the NFL.com/Live website. The feature, which is only available to premium subscribers, will provide the live content previously only streamed on the NFL website in addition to the LIVE NFL games on Thursday, Sunday and Monday nights for both preseason and regular season games offered as Premium features.

Premium features of the app are currently only available to Verizon customers and also offer live streams of NFL RedZone on Sunday afternoons and NFL Network 24/7. Unfortunately, it looks like the app still doesn’t include support for AirPlay.

What’s New in Version 8.6

– Added Fantasy Lineup Reminder alert – Access to NFL.com/Live content for premium subscribers – Fixed Fantasy login retention bug – Performance enhancements and general bug fixes

Powered by WordPress.com VIP