9to5 Stories April 18, 2013

Jonathan Ive gets tribute in Time 100 from Bono

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Nice words in the Time 100 for Apple SVP of Industrial Design Sir Jony from U2 frontman Bono:

Jony Ive is himself classic Apple. Brushed steel, polished glass hardware, complicated software honed to simplicity. His genius is not just his ability to see what others cannot but also how he applies it. To watch him with his workmates in the holy of holies, Apple’s design lab, or on a night out is to observe a very rare esprit de corps. They love their boss, and he loves them. What the competitors don’t seem to understand is you cannot get people this smart to work this hard just for money. Jony is Obi-Wan. His team are Jedi whose nobility depends on the pursuit of greatness over profit, believing the latter will always follow the former, stubbornly passing up near-term good opportunities to pursue great ones in the distance. Jony’s values happen to add value — emotional and financial. It takes a unique alchemy of form and function for millions of people to feel so passionately about the robot in their pocket.

Many more in the Time100 including Samsung’s CEO Oh-Hyun Kwon, Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer, Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg and AAPL stock manipulator David Einhorn.

Could this be the rear case of the long-rumored low-cost iPhone? Tactus (via Macrumors) thinks so.

While Tactus doesn’t have a notable track-record in such leaks, the design does appear reasonably consistent with the majority of rumors so far. It’s a plastic shell, similar dimensions to the iPhone 4 but a little thicker as you’d expect with a polycarbonate casing.

Tactus also claims to have some details of the phone’s spec:

I’ve also heard on the grapevine that the alleged budget iPhone will have an A5 processor like the iPad Mini with a 32nm diecast. It’s also rumoured it will have a 3.5 inch retina screen, much like the 4S, but not as big as the iPhone 5 … I’ve also discovered the factory producing this secretive project have confirmed the device will be available in Black, White, Blue, Red and Yellow

Real or not real? Let us know your view

9to5 Stories April 17, 2013

via techin5.com

via techin5.com

Henry McCracken over at Time has done us all a favor by collecting various data sets that illustrate the state of iOS versus Android.

The data ranges from device marketshare to revenue from app downloads, which presents some stark differences between the two platforms.

We unpack the results below.

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9to5 Stories April 13, 2013

Verizon announced a few notable changes this week, possibly in response to T-Mobile’s new ‘Uncarrier’ pricing structure.

The first change enforces 24-month contracts and restricts subsidized upgrades during that period. Customers will no longer enjoy ‘early upgrades’ after 20-months, as was previously the policy.

While the change may disappoint customers who enjoyed upgrading their devices more frequently, Verizon told The Verge that a new “Device Payment Plan” will be accompany the policy changes.

The new payment plan allows customers to upgrade their smartphone annually by paying the upgrade fee at the register and dividing the rest of the full-retail price over 12 months. This payment plan will include a $2/month finance charge through the duration of the year.

For people like us who update annually, this option is a more pragmatic approach, especially when vendors like Gazelle (as well as others) typically pay more than the subsidized cost of a new smartphone for last year’s smartphone.

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9to5 Stories April 12, 2013

Disguised discount on iPhone 4 triples sales in India in less than a week

Four large Apple resellers in India have reported a trebling of iPhone 4 sales in just five days after Apple introduced a trade-in scheme allowing customers to hand in their existing phone as part-payment on an iPhone 4, reports The Times of India.

Customers are offered a minimum Rs7,000 ($128) trade-in on any handset against the Rs26,500 ($486) cost of an iPhone 4. Retailers pay Rs,2000 of this in return for the right to sell the used handset, while Apple pays the Rs5,000 balance. As there appear to be no restrictions on brand, age or condition of the handset used for the trade-in, the move effectively amounts to a disguised discount, and suggests that the much-rumored low-cost iPhone is likely to prove successful.

The move appears to be a further strand in Apple’s push to expand its market share in India after last month’s news that it was trebling the number of franchisees in the country.

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