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January 19, 2015

Screenshots show Google’s upcoming Calendar iPhone app w/ Gmail, Photos, & Maps integration

It appears that Google could soon release its promised redesigned Calendar app for iPhone after first making the announcement and releasing the app for Android last November. The Next Web this morning shared a handful of leaked screenshots that provide a first look at Google Calendar for iOS, including info cards that indicate Gmail, Photos and Maps integration will be key features of the app.

Apple reportedly blocks app developers in Crimea following government sanctions

Adhering to government sanctions issued by the United States and European Commission in December, TechCrunch reports that Apple has started emailing notice of termination letters to registered developers in the Crimea region of Ukraine. Effective immediately, developers in the region cannot create or publish apps on the App Store and will be unable to access the developer portal, according to the reports.

January 17, 2015

Phil Schiller on Google Glass: ‘I can’t believe they think anyone normal will ever wear these things’

The Tech Block on Thursday shared an email exchange between Apple marketing chief Phil Schiller and the website’s founder Abdel Ibrahim that pokes fun at Google Glass for its perception of being an unstylish device. The emails from 2012 surfaced just days after Google announced that it will be ending its Glass Explorer program on Monday as it works on a new version under the leadership of Tony Faddell.

After being sent a picture of actor Steve Martin wearing obnoxious looking glasses in the film “The Jerk,” mocking Google co-founder Sergey Brin wearing Glass, Schiller responds to Ibrahim saying “that is very funny” and that he “can’t believe they think anyone (normal) will ever wear these things. It reminds me of the push to market video goggles a few years back.”

Kalt turns your iPhone into a precise, non-contact thermometer

Robogaia Industries is using Kickstarter to seek funding for a product called Kalt, an infrared sensor that plugs into an iPhone’s headphone jack and turns the smartphone into a precise, non-contact thermometer. The Cleveland-based company is looking to raise $10,000 over the next three weeks to cover development and manufacturing costs.

The palm-sized Kalt sensor reads the infrared energy that an object omits and converts it into readable temperatures in Fahrenheit, Celsius or Kelvin. Simply point Kalt towards the object and it will automatically show the temperature on the companion app for iOS and Android. The sensor is powered by the device it is plugged into and requires no batteries.

January 15, 2015

Angela Ahrendts

Apple is committed to its promise of expanding its retail presence in China from 15 to 40 stores within two years. Apple retail chief Angela Ahrendts told Chinese website Xinhua on Thursday that the iPhone maker is gearing up to open five new stores in roughly five weeks.

“We are opening five new stores before the Chinese New Year this year. Four of the stores are in brand new cities for us,” said Ahrendts in a telephone interview with Xinhua. The new locations will be opened in time for China‘s Spring Festival, a popular shopping season that commemorates the Chinese New Year, on February 19. expand full story

Simply Prepaid T-Mobile

T-Mobile continues to shake up the wireless industry by introducing a number of affordable plans and options as part of its ongoing Un-carrier initiative. Today, the carrier announced that it is expanding choices for prepaid customers with new Simply Prepaid plans for as little as $40 per month. The new plans will be available for new and existing customers on January 25th. expand full story

January 14, 2015

In response to Apple taking Ericsson to court over wireless patent licensing, the Swedish telecommunications company has filed a lawsuit in Texas that seeks the court to determine whether its licensing offer to Apple is fair. Ericsson told the court that it has been attempting to reach a new licensing agreement with Apple for over two years, but negotiations have failed to result in a deal. The patents in question are related to wireless LTE technologies that Apple uses in products like the iPhone and iPad. expand full story

January 12, 2015

A series of text strings discovered within iOS 8.1.2, and included on software versions dating back to at least iOS 8.1, suggest that Siri could soon receive expanded language support on iPhone and iPad. The localized strings provide translated references to how Siri would display things like settings toggles, restaurants and reservations, and sports information in Czech, Slovak, and Polish. expand full story

January 10, 2015

Apple showcases iPad with creative Smart Cover storefront display at Apple Store

Apple has had some interesting retail storefront displays for the iPhone, iPad and Mac in the past, but its latest effort all but tops the cake. At the iconic Apple Store on Regent Street in London, the Cupertino-based company now has a row of iPads on display with colorful Smart Covers that automatically open and close.

This video (from Vid.Me) does not explain how the Smart Covers are able to move on their own, although magnets underneath the shelf are almost certainly involved. Anyone who has used a Smart Cover knows that the accessory is not actually able to open and close by itself, but that hasn’t stopped some customers from inquiring about the trick at Apple Stores.

Verifone’s new future-proof NFC terminal supports all mobile payment platforms & devices, including Apple Pay

While an increasing number of retailers are adopting smartphones and tablets as mobile payment terminals, the deployment process can often prove to be expensive and time consuming as the sizes and form factors of devices continue to change. Leading NFC terminal maker Verifone aims to solve that problem, announcing today a new mPOS terminal that supports all mobile payment platforms and devices.

Verifone’s upcoming PAYware Mobile e355 should be an extremely valuable option for retailers looking to deploy a mobile POS system without being locked into a single ecosystem. PAYware Mobile e355 is designed to work with multiple device sizes and form factors, meaning that retailers won’t have to constantly upgrade their hardware when next-generation iPhones or Android-based smartphones are released.

January 8, 2015

CES 2015: Pinć VR headset for iPhone 6 hands-on and first impressions

A few months ago, we visited Toronto-based Cordon Labs for some hands-on time with the work-in-progress Pinć VR headset case for the iPhone 6 and Android-based smartphones. Fast forward to CES 2015 and we’ve once again had a few minutes to check out a new and improved prototype of the headset, now 20% slimmer and closer to becoming an accessory that could actually be pocketable without protruding through your pants. Read ahead for my first impressions of the Pinć and a brief overview of where I think it is headed.

CES 2015: Beeline shows off iPhone 6 case w/ retractable Kevlar cord for the outdoors

Whether you are a snowboarder hitting the slopes or a college student going out on the town for drinks, a new case shown off at the Venetian resort in Las Vegas during CES 2015 will help ensure that you stay connected with your iPhone in all situations.

Beeline, as it is called, is a multi-layered protective case for the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus that features a 30-inch retractable Kevlar cord and durable carabiner that can be attached to anything from your belt loop to a backpack.

While the Apple Watch is still a few months away from release, a handful of accessory makers at the annual Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas have introduced new accessories for the upcoming smartwatch. Standzout is one of the frontrunners in the space with its new Bandstand charging dock for the Apple Watch. Read ahead for my first impressions of the prototype shown off at CES 2015 this week. expand full story

January 7, 2015

It is the second day of the annual Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, and we’re back on the show floor to discover the diamonds in the rough. Noke, the world’s first Bluetooth-enabled padlock, is one of those hidden gems. Noke replaces the nuisances of losing your keys or needing to remember random combinations with convenient unlocking over Bluetooth technology when your iPhone is within close range. expand full story

December 30, 2014

In the months leading up to the launch of the Apple Watch next year, early opinions about the smartwatch have been quite mixed. While some believe that the Apple Watch will be as successful as iconic products released ahead of it, including the iPhone, iPad, iPod and Mac, others are more skeptical about how much of an impact the device will truly have.

While the wearables market is forecasted to become over a $5 billion industry by 2018, it hasn’t reached that point just yet. But T-Mobile CEO John Legere certainly thinks it will sooner than later, predicting that the Apple Watch launch in 2015 will be the turning point in which the wearables market goes from niche to mainstream. expand full story

December 17, 2014

December 16, 2014

Delta security flaw enables passengers to access someone else’s online boarding pass

Hackers of NY founder Dani Grant has discovered (via Engadget) a security flaw that enables Delta passengers to access the boarding passes of others, even those flying with different airlines like Southwest. Grant realized that she could share a link allowing anyone to download her boarding pass, and then change one digit in the URL and be presented with a completely different boarding pass belonging to someone else.

Apple halts online sales in Russia to review pricing amid ‘extreme’ currency fluctuations

Bloomberg reports this afternoon that Apple has ceased online sales in Russia due to “extreme” fluctuations in the value of the ruble. Apple has previously attempted to combat the unpredictable swings in the country’s official currency by adjusting the prices of its products, having most recently increased the price of the iPhone 6 by 25% in the country last month.

December 15, 2014

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