plastic Stories August 17, 2015

tim-cook-apple-tv

Apple plans to hold one of its annual fall media events on Wednesday, September 9th to introduce the new iPhone 6S and iPhone 6S Plus with Force Touch, and after many fits and starts, it appears that the long-awaited next-generation Apple TV will also be unveiled. We’ve been reporting on this upcoming model since 2014, as Apple has been planning to update its set-top-box with support for an App Store for quite some time.

Earlier this year, Apple had locked in a June WWDC debut for both the new Apple TV hardware and software upgrades, but the company ultimately decided to delay the introduction until the fall. While some had speculated that the announcement was pushed back due to a lack of content deals, we are told that the delay was internally attributed to a concern over compromising iOS 9 engineering resources, as the latest OS release is focused at least as much on polish as on new features.

Why would the new Apple TV potentially take away resources from iOS 9? According to sources, this new Apple TV model, codenamed J34, will be the first model to run a full-blown iOS core. Specifically, the new Apple TV operating system will be a TV-optimized version of iOS 9. In addition to the new hardware inside, running iOS 9 will give the new Apple TV a series of benefits over the current model. Below, we explore what users can expect from Apple’s next-generation living room product.

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plastic Stories April 24, 2015

As users unbox their new Apple Watch units today, customers who bought the Sport version are receiving a bit of a surprise. The inductive charging cable bundled with Apple Watch Sport is actually made of plastic rather than the nice metal finishes of the more expensive stainless steel and gold watches.

The material is very similar to other Apple accessories which have white gloss exteriors. It’s unclear why the Sport does not get the fancier cable: it may be simply for cost-saving purposes to maximize Apple’s bottom line or it may be a design choice to better match the materials of the Watch itself.

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plastic Stories March 30, 2015

iPhone-6C-Rear-Housing-1

Image via Future Supplier

Some new photos posted by Future Supplier claim to show the leaked rear casing to the rumored “iPhone 6C.” Recent reports have said that the device will sport a 4-inch screen like that of the iPhone 5, 5C, and 5S, allowing it to appeal to those who prefer smaller displays over the larger iPhone 6 and 6 Plus.

While the veracity of these shots has not been confirmed, there are some interesting details to note that could give us some more clues about the design of the rumored device.

Keep reading for photos and analysis…

plastic Stories April 23, 2014

Apple giving employees company-branded, reusable water bottles for Earth Day

As Apple continues to observe Earth Day this year with its new Tim Cook-narrated “Better” film and detailed environmental report card site, the Cupertino company is issuing Apple-branded reusable water bottles to both corporate and retail employees to promote responsible.

In its message to employees, Apple says that 16,420 plastic bottles can be saved through reusable water bottle use, and Apple employees alone can save 22 tons of plastic waste per year (that’s 44,000 pounds) using a reusable water bottle.

Each water bottle features an Apple logo as well as a colored band picked by each employee. In Apple’s message to employees, the company said retail locations will receive their Earth Day company-issued reusable water bottles at a later date as distribution is currently taking place for Cupertino employees.

plastic Stories March 4, 2014

5c

Apple doesn’t break down its iPhone sales figures, so we don’t know for sure that the iPhone 5c sold poorly, but certainly everything we do know seems to point in that direction – from early sales estimates through analytics and consumer surveys to Apple switching production from the 5c to the 5s.

Tim Cook said in an earnings call that “the mix was something very different than we thought,” and intimated that the model might be dropped: “If we decide it’s in our best interest to make a change, then we’ll make one.”

None of this necessarily means that the 5c was a complete failure, of course: record-breaking iPhone sales right from the outset could mean that the plastic phone did ok, it’s simply that the 5s sold far better than expected. It could also be that it was the extra sales gained from the 5c that helped break those records.

But I suspect not. While the brightly-colored 5c was not without its fans, it was the iPhone 5s with its Touch ID sensor and gold colored model that got all the attention, and I don’t think Tumblr advertising is going to change that. So my bet is we will again see a trend away from  colorful plastic iPhones …  expand full story

plastic Stories September 16, 2013

Apple has started airing a new advertisement for the iPhone 5c. The ad is called “Plastic Perfected” and it focuses on the colors and materials of the new iPhone model. Much of the advertisement is reminiscent of scenes from Apple’s executive promotional video for the device. The iPhone 5c launches this Friday alongside the iPhone 5s.

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plastic Stories September 13, 2013

Following the release of the new iPhone 5s and iPhone 5c, Microsoft has uploaded a video poking fun at the new Apple smartphones. The video pretends to be a “fly on the wall” during an Apple product development meeting, apparently attempting to make fun of the plastic materials and colors of the 5c.

The videos don’t exactly position Windows Phone against iOS, simply taking jabs at iOS without explaining any benefits of the Microsoft platform.

The ad also mentions iWatch development and the new gold iPhone 5s with fingerprint scanner. The video above follows our roundup of the latest iPhone parody videos (and some additional ones below). Several more videos from Microsoft are also below:

Update: The videos have been removed. 

Update 2: Mirror of one of the ads replaced above

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plastic Stories September 11, 2013

A small surprise yesterday during Apple’s introduction of the new iPhone 5c and iPhone 5s was the launch of new cases for the devices. The iPhone 5s gets a new leather case in six colors, and the 5c gets colourful silicone cases with small circular cutouts meant to show off the iPhone’s color underneath. The silicone 5c cases don’t seem to be getting the best response following yesterday’s unveiling, but the good news is there are already several reputable case manufacturers with cases available for both the iPhone 5c and 5s.

Screen Shot 2013-09-11 at 2.39.53 PMThe biggest complaint (apart from comparisons to crocs) seems to be lack of attention to detail, highlighted best in the image of the “iPhone” text to the right.  If Apple’s new cases won’t cut it, below we’ve put together a roundup of the best cases from around the web that are already available to order and coming soon for the launch of the device later this month.  expand full story

plastic Stories September 1, 2013

iPhone5C1

As Apple’s September 10th iPhone event approaches, a few new photos claiming to show packaged “iPhone 5Cs” and accompanying materials have surfaced online. The first photo comes from website iApps.im, and it purports to show several “iPhone 5C” units in packaging. The “iPhone 5C” is what many are calling Apple’s upcoming lower-cost, plastic-backed iPhone. The packaging in these photos appears to line up with a purported packaging leak from earlier this year

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plastic Stories August 28, 2013

Apple-Plastic-Job-listing

Leading up to the unveiling of a new lower-cost plastic ‘iPhone 5C’ expected at Apple’s September 10 event next month, Apple is looking to hire an “experienced plastics material engineer” to work on iPhones and iPads. The engineer would join Apple’s iPhone/iPad Materials team and must have “extensive experience in plastic material properties, part design and fabrication.” While we know the current iPhone and iPads do use some internal plastic parts, the job listing also makes mentions of aesthetic requirements as well as experience in “plastic materials and design for manufacturing in terms of geometry and cosmetic quality.” That could be a hint the position will involve more than just the design of internal plastic parts.

There have been a ton of unconfirmed leaks claiming to show the plastic lower cost iPhone’s colourful back casings, but we posted the first photos of the next gen full-sized iPad back in January showing the device will borrow its design aesthetic from the iPad mini. It would be a stretch to imagine Apple might be working on a lower-cost, plastic iPad, but it is something it prototyped early on. Apple is expected to unveil the new lower-cost plastic iPhone alongside the new iPhone 5S at its event next month. There have been some conflicting reports this morning regarding the iPads, but we’re still expecting new iPads to be announced a later event.

Plastic iPhone dummy units show altered color palette including pink & yellowish-orange

As Apple’s September 10th iPhone event approaches, speculation is rising in terms of what Apple will announce.

It seems clear that Apple will launch a new iPhone 5S with a fingerprint scanner, a gold casing option, and an improved processor. It also seems likely that Apple will finally take the wraps off of a lower-cost, plastic iPhone model that comes in multiple colors.

plastic Stories August 25, 2013

Screen Shot 2013-08-25 at 11.24.28 AM

As Apple’s iPhone 5S event approaches, some new details about the new device’s internals are emerging. Clayton Morris has claimed on Twitter that the iPhone 5S’s A7 processor is “running at about 31% faster” than the iPhone 5’s A6 chip. The iPhone 5’s A6 chip is dual-core, and it seems like the iPhone 5S will also remain dual-core.

However, there could be a major differentiator: 64-bit. We’ve independently heard claims that some of the iPhone 5S internal prototypes include 64-bit processors.

It’s unclear if 64-bit will make the cut, but it’s been in testing. We’re told that the 64-bit processing will assist the A7 chip in making animations, transparencies, and other iOS 7 graphical effects appear much more smoothly than on existing iOS Devices…

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plastic Stories August 11, 2013

iPhone 5S/5C physical mockups

<a href="http://9to5mac.com/2013/08/10/new-mockups-claim-to-show-iphone-5s-and-iphone-5c-designs-gallery/">iPhone 5S/5C physical mockups</a>

Apple’s next two iPhone models will be named iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C, according to a report from Japan-based Macotakara. With repeated reports and rumors of the next-generation iPhone retaining the same design as the iPhone 5, the “iPhone 5S” name has long been claimed and regarded as the name of the new flagship iPhone. Apple’s iPhone 4S and iPhone 3GS retained the designs of the iPhone 4 and iPhone 3G, respectively.

However, because of Apple’s surprise naming scheme for the third-generation iPad (The new iPad), an outright claim of the name “iPhone 5S” may be important to some interested in the upcoming device.

As for the “iPhone 5C,” this name gained attention when purported packaging materials for the upcoming, lower-cost, plastic iPhone surfaced in photos online. It is unclear what the “C” in “5C” could stand for, but speculation and logic points to the “C” standing for “color.” Like recent iPod touch models, this plastic iPhone is rumored to come in a series of colors…

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plastic Stories August 10, 2013

New mockups claim to show ‘iPhone 5S’ and ‘iPhone 5C’ designs [Gallery]

Vietnamese website Tinhte, which has a solid track record of getting its hands on pre-release Apple products and accurate mock ups,today posted what it claims are mock ups of two next-generation iPhones. One is the full-fledged “iPhone 5S” upgrade, while the other claims to show the much rumored low-cost “iPhone 5C” that we’ve been hearing a lot about recently. It’s worth noting that Tinhte says the source of the images, Vietnamese accessory supplier PhukienGiare, also supplied the publication with accurate pre-release mock ups of the iPad mini leading up to its launch.

For the iPhone 5S, the design of the mock up appears to be largely the same as the current iPhone 5. Most rumors seem to agree with that much, and the site notes its report from earlier this year that claimed the device will pack in a new 12-megapixel camera. The mock up also shows the dual LED flash that is rumored to make an appearance on the device.

The second mock up shows what the site is referring to the “iPhone 5C“, and shows the all-plastic design that we’ve seen several times in other alleged leaks. The site notes that the Lightning connector looks slightly smaller on the mock up, but it’s unsure if this is just on the mock up or if Apple is experimenting with tweaked connector designs. (The iPhone in the images with the leather skin is an iPhone 5 for comparison).

Earlier this week photographs leaked showing the iPad mini-like design for the next-generation 9.7-inch iPad that we posted of photos of back in January.

plastic Stories July 22, 2013

Screen Shot 2013-07-22 at 3.07.47 PM

Analyst Ming-Chi-Kuo, who has a fairly strong track record in predicting future Apple products (timing not withstanding), has issued a new report with claims for some of Apple’s new products for the rest of 2013. The following is a breakdown of Kuo’s claims by product:

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iPhone-5-demand-June-2013

New numbers out today from research firm Consumer Intelligence Research Partners (via AllthingsD) show that consumers in the U.S. are purchasing an increasing number of previous generation iPhones compared to recent years. It certainly helps make the case for a much rumored lower-cost iPhone, with the iPhone 4 capturing 18 percent of iPhones sold in the US during the June quarter, and the iPhone 4S an impressive 30 percent.

As noted by AllThingsD, the 52 percent of total iPhone sales captured by the iPhone 5 is much less than the iPhone 4S had just nine months into its release:

Nine months after the iPhone 5′s debut, it accounts for about half of all iPhone sales. The 4S still accounted for nearly three-quarters of iPhone sales almost a year after its launch.

While the obvious conclusion to draw from the data is an increased demand for a lower priced iPhone, CIRP’s Josh Lowitz thinks Apple could continue to take on the lower price market in the US with its previous generations of iPhones: expand full story

plastic Stories April 18, 2013

MacBook bottom case replacement program extended to four years

If the rubber surface of your MacBook has separated from the bottom case, and you bought it between Oct 2009 and April 2011, you’re in luck: Apple has just extended warranty coverage of this specific issue to four years. Apple originally launched the replacement program in May 2011. Full details on the Apple support site (via MacRumors.)

plastic Stories April 3, 2013

Concept imagines low-cost iPhone with translucent iMac G3-inspired plastic in multiple colors

BusinessInsider points us to this concept from Matteo Gianni and friends that imagines a low-cost iPhone inspired by the original translucent, brightly colored casings Apple introduced with its iMac G3. While the G3-inspired back casing comes from only one sketchy DigiTimes report, the concept also appears to include a curved backside and other elements that line up with more concrete reports.

plastic Stories March 18, 2013

New concepts imagine the low-cost iPhone in 4 and 4.5-inch variants, multiple colors

iPhoneclub.nl has partnered with concept artist Martin Hajek on this latest round of mock-ups that imagines the much-rumored, low-cost iPhone based on some of the recent rumors floating around. More realistic is the red version, as it includes a 4-inch display, polycarbonate backside, and some of the other rumored changes such as the positioning of ports and openings. We also get a larger 4.5-inch version in blue, which is something most analysts don’t expect to see on an iPhone until at least 2014.

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