expansion Stories August 16, 2015

Apple Pay iPhone 6

It appears that the expansion of Apple Pay into Australia could be farther off than some had hoped. According to a report today from The Sydney Morning Herald, Apple is in negotiations with at least four of the largest banks in Australia in order to form partnerships for Apple Pay in in the region. However, the report claims Apple is having issues in negotiations centered around the fees it collects from the currently supported Apple Pay markets of the United States and United Kingdom.

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expansion Stories July 27, 2015

Apple bringing its Maps vehicles to France, Sweden & more US/UK cities

Apple has announced an expansion of its Apple Maps vehicle program, a fleet of vans equipped with advanced sensors collecting data for an improved Maps experience. Among the new locations, Apple will be bringing the vehicles to France and Sweden for the first time, while it also plans to survey a long list of new cities in the US and UK where it’s already started surveying.

We first reported on the project back in May, noting that Apple was gathering data to reduce its reliance on third-parties, including getting Google Street View-type images of storefronts and other 3D imagery.

For France, Apple lists the following areas already scheduled for surveying: Hauts-de-Seine, Paris (1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th, 13th, 14th, 15th, 16th, 17th, 18th, 19th, 20th), Seine-Saint-Denis, Val-de-Marne.

For Sweden, the areas the company plans to visit include: Malmö in Skåne County, and Stockholm (Bromma, Enskede-Årsta-Vantör, Farsta, Hägersten-Liljeholmen, Hässelby-Vällingby, Kungsholmen, Norrmalm, Rinkeby-Kista, Skarpnäck, Skärholmen, Spånga-Tensta, Södermalm, Älvsjö, Östermalm).

Apple has also added a number of new areas in the UK and US that it plans to survey from August 17th to August 30th next month. The full list is on its website here along with other dates scheduled for data collection in various locations.

expansion Stories July 7, 2015

apple-pay-watch-iphone-ipad

Apple is continuing the roll out of Apple Pay today with the addition of 20+ new US banks and credit unions supporting the iPhone, iPad and Apple Watch-based payments service.

The total 23 new banks and credit unions include: expand full story

expansion Stories June 6, 2015

Apple Watch Apple Pay

Apple is planning to announce support for Apple Pay in the United Kingdom during its Monday Worldwide Developers Conference kickoff keynote, according to a report from The Telegraph. The report adds that the service will go live in the U.K. within two months. Mike Cowan, a Senior VP at MasterCard, told the publication that his company is “absolutely” ready to support Apple Pay abroad. We have heard this as well, including that major bank Lloyds is a planned launch partner. We have also received a tip claiming that Santander UK is gearing up for new mobile payments training in the coming weeks. The U.K. will likely mark the first international expansion of Apple Pay since its launch in the United States last fall…

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expansion Stories May 20, 2015

Apple Watch + Music

Apple Watch + Music

We’ve reported extensively on what Apple has in store for its new revamped music service that will come alongside an international expansion of iTunes Radio, and today reports from Russian publication Vedomosti (via Billboard) hint that Russia will be one market Apple is aiming to launch in soon… expand full story

Facebook Messenger’s free video calling now available worldwide

After adding support for a new cross-platform video chat service through its Facebook Messenger mobile apps, Facebook has now announced that the feature is rolling out to all worldwide.

The feature first launched back in April for users on iOS and Android in Belgium, Canada, Croatia, Denmark, France, Greece, Ireland, Laos, Lithuania, Mexico, Nigeria, Norway, Oman, Poland, Portugal, the UK, the US and Uruguay. Today, Facebook said the feature is now rolled out globally “with the exception of a few countries” that it’s still working on:

Quick update on video calling in Messenger: we’re happy to share we’ve now rolled out the capability globally, with the exception of a few countries we’re still working on improving quality for.

You can check out the new Facebook Messenger video calling feature through the latest versions of the iOS and Android apps.

expansion Stories January 9, 2015

Apple-Pay-Press-shot-02

Apple is preparing to expand its new Apple Pay payments service internationally with at least the Canadian launch currently scheduled for early 2015, according to sources close to the situation. expand full story

expansion Stories November 3, 2014

tim-cook-china-7

Tim Cook speaking at a conference in China

Apple is seeking to cement its business position in China for the long-term with an expansion of its Cupertino-based Apple University program to the region, according to a person with knowledge of the plans. Apple Vice President and Dean of Apple University Joel Podolny is currently interviewing candidates for a new Dean of Apple University position for China, according to the source.

Started in 2008, Apple University is an extensive and growing program within corporate Apple that trains mid-level employees and managers on the decisions made by Steve Jobs and other key executives throughout the company’s resurgence. Jobs created the program alongside former Yale School of Business Dean Podolny in order to keep the culture of Apple alive well beyond the lifetime of executives key to Apple’s early success.

The expansion of Apple University to China will mark a key step in Apple’s history as a global company. It will be the first time Apple has fully expanded the exclusive program to another region, indicating that it wants to extend its presence in China beyond mostly just sales and operations, like it has done in the United States. Apple has previously offered a minimal amount of courses in other regions and has flown-in professors. With many Apple suppliers headquartered in China, it is likely that a notable portion of the Apple University classes in China will be geared toward product engineering and manufacturing matters…

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expansion Stories August 8, 2014

The Sims 2: Super Collection hits Mac as Peter Molyneux’s ‘Godus’ lands for iOS

Two new games are arriving today with Mac users getting access to a new The Sims 2: Super Collection and iOS gamers getting their hands on the latest creation from Fable creator Peter Molyneux.

The Sims 2: Super Collection includes the return of the classic title for Mac exclusively on the Mac App Store and with it you get all of the downloadable content including 6 expansion packs and 3 additional content packs. The collection is available on the Mac App Store now as a single download for $29.99. Developers Aspyr noted, “We’ve completely overhauled The Sims™ 2 to work with modern hardware and OS configurations, optimizing performance with a new renderer, and we are supporting native resolution.”

Up next for games today is the latest from Peter Molyneux, creator of Fable and other popular titles for consoles and PC, with the release of ‘Godus’ for iPhone and iPad. The god simulator of sorts has received some teasers up until now through its Kickstarter campaign, but today the game is finally available on the App Store as a free download.

The Sims 2: Super Collection – $29.99 Mac App Store

Godus for iPhone and iPad – FREE App Store

expansion Stories May 21, 2014

Image via Mercury News

Image via Mercury News

A San Jose Mercury News report reveals that Apple is planning to expand its operations to a new Sunnyvale, CA campus. At 290,000 square feet, the Sunnyvale Crossing is a bit smaller than Apple’s previous 350,000 square foot Sunnyvale expansion (though it has one more building than the previous expansion).

Apple is currently in the process of constructing its new “spaceship” headquarters, which is expected to be completed by 2016 and will help alleviate some of the need for these external campuses and allow the company to bring more of its corporate team together in one place. However, the lease on this new space is reportedly somewhere between 7-10 years, so it’s likely that Apple plans to continue using the space for quite some time.

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expansion Stories December 10, 2013

Expansion of Apple Store Stonestown, San Francisco set for December 14th

Apple has announced that the expansion of its Stonestown retail store in San Francisco will be open to the public on December 14th. The expanded store will open at 8 AM. This announcement comes less than a day after the announcement of a new Apple retail store in Dusseldorf, Germany, which is set to open on the same day.

Ifo Apple Store notes that this expansion will put the store at 7,690 square feet—more than double the size of the existing space—allowing more room for customer training that the current store does not have. The expanded store will occupy two adjacent spaces previously held by other retailers. Part of a third space is also being added to the store, though the rest of that space will remain unused.

Apple has plans to open thirty new retail stores worldwide in the coming year, which will bring the total number of stores to around 448, with stores in fourteen countries and counting. The company also plans to expand twenty of its existing locations.

Update: Apple is also re-opening an expanded store at the Rosedale Center in Roseville, Minnesota.

expansion Stories August 8, 2013

T-Mobile CEO teases carrier will expand its Apple product offerings (iPad?)

Following this morning’s T-Mobile announcement of a jump in customer base, thanks somewhat to Apple’s iPhone, T-Mobile CEO John Legere teased an expansion of what Apple products his company offers. In an interview with AllThingsDLegere said the following:

“I think there’s a whole array of Apple products that we look forward to carrying,” Legere said. “We will expand what we offer from them.”

The first part of the quote seems to be referring to upcoming, rumored Apple product launches such as two new iPhone models. Apple is planning an “iPhone 5S” with improved camera and voice features plus the potential of a biometric fingerprint scanner. Also in the works is a low-cost, plastic-based iPhone model. We previously noted that Apple would debut an “army” of new products this fall, and the company says it plans to have an aggressive product rollout this fall and throughout 2014.

The second part of the quote is a bit more assertive, however. Legere outright says that his carrier will expand its Apple product offerings. T-Mobile currently does not carry the cellular-enabled iPads, so perhaps Apple will team up with the carrier to also sell tablets. Apple has expanded its iPad carrier options over the past couple of years, starting in 2010 with AT&T, adding Verizon in 2011, and Sprint in 2012. Perhaps T-Mobile will be the 2013 addition with the upcoming fifth-generation iPad. (Image via Fox).

expansion Stories April 24, 2013

FreedomPop announces network expansion for nationwide coverage alongside new 3G/4G ‘Overdrive Pro’ hotspot

Update: A 9to5Mac reader has chimed in clarifying that the new hotspot only offers the free 500MB plan on the new Sprint-enabled 4G service. For 3G coverage, users will have to pay an additional $3.99 per month:

Although their website and press release say the new Overdrive comes with free data every month, there’s apparently a string.  Apparently only the 4G data is free, see my email thread with customer service below.  This is wholly inconsistent with what their website or press release indicates… This tactic is as deceptive as when FreedomPop first went live. At that time, they said the devices were “free with deposit” but it now turns out that if you keep the device for 12 months or more, the deposit is forfeited.  That forfeiture is buried deep within the TOS, and not likely understood by consumers until it’s time to return their hardware.

Wireless provider FreedomPop, the company providing access to free monthly data plans through a number of hotspot devices and iOS device accessories, today announced it is expanding its 3G coverage through Sprint’s network to provide nationwide coverage to its customers.

“The biggest criticism with our service to date has been the coverage gaps in certain parts of the country,” said Stephen Stokols, FreedomPop’s CEO. “Starting today, FreedomPop users can connect to the Internet across the entire nation leaving no reason to continue paying high monthly Internet bills for Internet from large, expensive carriers.”

In addition to the network expansion, it is also now accepting preorders for its latest hotspot device dubbed “Overdrive Pro” (pictured above):

The FreedomPop Overdrive Pro becomes the company’s first device to run on Sprint’s network. The Overdrive Pro will allow up to five devices to connect to it and get speeds up to 8 mbps down. In addition to FreedomPop’s free 500 MB plan, users can also purchase a 2 GB or 4 GB 4G/3G plan with no contract or annual commitment at rates up to 50 percent less than major carriers.

FreedomPop offers users free data (with the option to purchase more) ranging from 500MB to 2GB per month through devices such as its $99 WiMAX sleeve for iPod touch or the recently announced $89 Burst 4G home wireless router. It also has an iPhone 4/4S case that is awaiting Federal Communication Commission approval and told us in February it plans to roll out LTE service and a new LTE iPad clip later this year.

expansion Stories November 16, 2012

AT&T’s LTE to blanket 103 markets, with 24 new markets announced this week

AT&T just revealed its 4G LTE now blankets over 150 million people across the United States, more than doubling where it stood at the end of 2011 in terms of people covered, and now it plans to push full steam ahead by expanding to 103 markets total, with more expected by the end of 2012.

The carrier further noted its 4G LTE coverage is “part of the nation’s largest 4G network” that services 3,000 more 4G areas than Verizon currently does (although much of that is slower HSPA 4G).

Moreover, as AT&T’s 4G LTE coverage continues to widen, customers can access 4G speeds “outside of 4G LTE areas on the nation’s largest 4G network, unlike competitors, whose smartphone customers fall back to slower 3G technologies when outside of LTE coverage.”

4G LTE expansions announced today: 

  • Charleston, S.C.
  • Columbia, S.C.
  • Greenville, S.C.
  • Columbus, Ohio
  • Toledo, Ohio
  • Corvallis, Ore.
  • Eugene, Ore.
  • El Paso, Texas
  • Jonesboro, Ark.
  • Mobile, Ala.
  • Pensacola, Fla.
  • Portland, Maine
  • Saratoga Springs, N.Y,
  • South Bend-Mishawaka, Ind.
  • Bridgeport, CT expansion (in Fairfield County/Danbury)
  • South Detroit expansion (in Monroe/Downriver)

Today’s expansion notice comes just two days after the carrier also announced its 4G LTE network would light up in Daytona Beach, Fla. Denver, Colo., Louisville, K.Y., Milwaukee, Wis., Provo-Orem, Utah, Tacoma, Wash., York, Pa., and Washington D.C.

This article is cross-posted on 9to5Google.

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