press release Stories April 18, 2016

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The National Association of Broadcaster’s trade show in Las Vegas is in full swing, and several prominent hardware makers have unveiled new Thunderbolt 3-equipped tools. Although there are no current products in Apple’s lineup that support Thunderbolt 3, it’s widely assumed that such hardware, made possible by Intel’s Skylake microarchitecture, is in the pipeline.

The folks over at Lacie, Promise, and CalDigit have all revealed new Thunderbolt 3 products at NAB 2016, bringing high bandwidth and high-capacity storage solutions to market.

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[UPDATE April 19: New models unveiled including rose gold.]

Is Apple planning to refresh its 12-inch MacBook? Best Buy is currently listing all models of the device as unavailable on its website leading some to speculate that Apple could be planning a refresh. 

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press release Stories February 18, 2016

Volvo announces launch of new V90 Estate, its latest with Apple’s CarPlay

Volvo is today announcing the launch of its latest vehicle, the V90 Estate, which also happens to be the company’s latest with support for Apple’s in-dash iPhone CarPlay feature.

The car is Volvo’s third for its premium 90 series and for that reason is being referred to as a sibling of the S90 sedan and XC90 SUV models that the company previously unveiled (and which also include support for CarPlay). In its press release, the company notes that means the new V90 Estate, like the XC90 and S90 before it, is “built on the company’s specially-designed and fully modular Scalable Product Architecture (SPA).”

“The modern premium estate is all about the intriguing combination of a luxurious experience with the functional origins of the estates silhouette. The sophisticated ambience of our new Volvo Interiors is combined with a great cargo space, providing the right kind of functionality – whether through connectivity or cargo and storage solutions,” said Thomas Ingenlath senior vice president for design at Volvo Cars.

The new V90 delivers cutting-edge Pilot Assist semi-autonomous drive technology, the most advanced standard safety package on the market, with large animal detection and run-off road mitigation, and class-leading connectivity including smartphone integration with Apple CarPlay.

The vehicle has full support for Apple’s CarPlay on the V90 Estate’s in-dash system using a connected iPhone. Volvo says the in-dash system on the V90 Estate is the same as in the S90, which includes a 9-inch touchscreen display as pictured above. And here’s a look at the exterior on the V90 Estate:

Volvo first announced support for CarPlay on its 2016 XC90 SUV last year that it later delivered to owners of the vehicle through a software update back in December. Here’s a look at the feature in action in the vehicle:

Earlier this year Apple for the first time offered up an official list of CarPlay partners by year and model via a new webpage, but it has yet to update it to note the new Volvo V90 Estate launching today.

press release Stories April 23, 2014

130521141911-tim-cook-hero-tax-code-614xaApple just announced its second quarter results for 2014 with revenue for the quarter coming in at $45.6 billion. That’s compared to the guidance it previously provided of $42 – $44 billion and estimates by analysts averaging approximately $43.5B. Apple’s $45.6 billion in revenue reported today is also up from the $43.6 billion in revenue in the year ago quarter.

Break down of device sales for Q2 2014 include 43.7m million iPhones, 16.3 million iPads, and 4.1 million Macs. Compare that to an average of 38M iPhones, 19.3M iPads, 4M Macs, and 3M iPods predicted by the analysts leading up to today. In the same quarter last year, Apple sold 37.4 million iPhones, 19.5 million iPads, just under 4 million Macs, and 5.6 million iPods.

It also reported net quarterly profit of $10.2 billion, or $11.62 per diluted share in contrast to quarterly net profit of $9.5 billion, or $10.09 per diluted share in the same quarter last year.

“We’re very proud of our quarterly results, especially our strong iPhone sales and record revenue from services,” said Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO. “We’re eagerly looking forward to introducing more new products and services that only Apple could bring to market.”

“We generated $13.5 billion in cash flow from operations and returned almost $21 billion in cash to shareholders through dividends and share repurchases during the March quarter,” said Peter Oppenheimer, Apple’s CFO. “That brings cumulative payments under our capital return program to $66 billion.”

Apple is providing guidance for its next quarter of revenue between $36 billion and $38 billion.

The question of the day for Tim Cook and other Apple executives on today’s call will surely be the new product categories that Cook previously said were coming across 2014 and have yet to make an appearance in the first quarter. With Apple’s WWDC developer conference just around the corner, we’ll have to wait and see if Cook gives us any clues of what’s to come during the call today at 2:00 p.m. PST/5:00 p.m. EST. Stay tuned to our live blog for coverage. 

Apple’s full press release is below: expand full story

press release Stories April 9, 2014

Dropbox launches new “Carousel” photo & video gallery app

Dropbox is introducing its latest product today, a photo and video management app called Carousel that integrates many of the features from the photo storage service Snapjoy acquired by Dropbox back in 2012.

The company unveiled the app at an event today in San Francisco as a gallery to store and share all of your photos and videos. The app is built for quick and easy sharing of one or multiple photos to phone contacts or email addresses (even if the recipient doesn’t have a Dropbox account), allowing you to get around the upload limitations usually associated with sharing photos. With everything backed up in full resolution directly to Dropbox, it essentially becomes a standalone app to manage just photos and videos that you want to store in Dropbox.

With Dropbox, we built a home for your photos and videos but never gave you a great way to experience them. We’d like you to meet Carousel, the newest member of the Dropbox family. It’s a gallery that houses your entire life’s memories. Even more, Carousel lets you share and relive these memories in private conversations with friends and family.

Carousel is now available as a free download on the App Store for iOS and the Play Store for Android.

The company also made some other product announcements today including news regarding versions of its Mailbox app for Android and Mac OS X.

T-Mobile’s new $40 plan gets you unlimited talk, text & 500MB of LTE data, no international perks

T-Mobile is about to kick off three days of announcements for new initiatives starting with a new $40 Simple Starter plan that it says is a first for a U.S. carrier. Starting on April 12, T-Mobile claims the new $40 plan will make it the first to offer “unlimited talk and text, and up to 500MB of 4G LTE data and tethering with no data overages” at that price point. In this case, since the LTE data isn’t unlimited, no overages isn’t entirely accurate. It  really means you’ll have to purchase additional data once you hit that 500MB cap for the month. In its press release, T-Mobile compared the new plan to AT&T’s entry-level plan:

T-Mobile contrasted its new flat-rate value plan against AT&T’s entry-level plan, whose costs immediately jump by $20 increments – in what amounts to a massive 44% price hike on those customers least able to absorb overages and bill shock. With Simple Starter, you’ll get a ton more data compared to AT&T’s 300MB, and you’ll never pay data overages again – ever. And with data capped at 500MB, you’ll never pay more until you choose to pay more – by purchasing additional data sessions whenever you like.

T-Mobile’s argument is that its method of charging for more data is more transparent than the other guys, but at the end of the day an overage is an overage and paying for more data will cost you $5/day or $10/week for T-Mobile’s “additional data sessions.” In reality, AT&T’s $45 300MB plan is comparable considering it only charges users $5 more for the next tier up, $50 for 1GB a month.

The new Simple Starter plan won’t, however, have access to the unlimited international data and texting perks that come with T-Mobile’s Simple Choice plans. They start at $50, $10 more than the new Simple Starter plan. There’s more about today’s announcement on T-Mobile CEO John Legere’s blog and the full press release below.

press release Stories February 13, 2014

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After a couple of teases that a new Angry Birds title was incoming, Rovio today announced that a new game called “Angry Birds Stella” is coming soon. The game features a female lead character unlike the majority of Rovio’s other games, but there aren’t many details about how else it might differ from other Angry Birds titles.

Angry Birds Stella will open a door to a part of the Angry Birds universe you’ve never seen before! There will be plenty of fun and adventure, but the bunch of passionate pals will also have to deal with some serious issues in order to protect their friendship and the environment they live in. Luckily, Stella and her friends are good at finding creative solutions!

No word on an official release date, but Rovio says the game will ship sometime in the fall.

press release Stories December 16, 2013

Apple: Beyonce breaks iTunes Store record w/ 828,773 albums sold in 3 days

Apple today announced a new record for the fastest selling album ever on the iTunes Store with the latest release from Beyonce selling 828,773 albums in its first three days of release. The new ‘visual album’ featuring 17 videos was released unexpectedly late last week as an iTunes exclusive.

BEYONCÉ is infused with 14 new songs and 17 visually stunning, provocative videos shot around the world from Houston to New York City to Paris, and Sydney to Rio de Janeiro, all before the album’s release. The album represents Beyoncé’s biggest sales week ever.

The self-titled album is Beyonce’s fifth and also takes the record for first week album sales in the US with 617,213 albums sold since its release on Dec. 13. Compare those numbers with the 310k copies Beyonce’s last studio album “4” sold during its first week.

Billboard previously reported that the album had sold 80,000 copies in just three hours on its first day of release.

press release Stories June 16, 2013

Apple responds to accusations of sharing customer data with U.S. government

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Apple published an open letter late Sunday night responding to recent allegations that the company had given customers’ personal information, including phone call logs, to the U.S. government as part of the National Security Agency’s secret “PRISM” program.

In the letter, Apple notes that the government had in fact issued several thousand requests for such information, but that Apple’s legal department had carefully examined each request and turned over only the smallest amount of information necessary, sometimes rejecting requests outright.

From December 1, 2012 to May 31, 2013, Apple received between 4,000 and 5,000 requests from U.S. law enforcement for customer data. Between 9,000 and 10,000 accounts or devices were specified in those requests, which came from federal, state and local authorities and included both criminal investigations and national security matters. The most common form of request comes from police investigating robberies and other crimes, searching for missing children, trying to locate a patient with Alzheimer’s disease, or hoping to prevent a suicide.

Apple has placed a link to the full letter at the bottom of their home page, or you can read the entire thing after the break. expand full story

press release Stories May 16, 2013

Apple announces 50 billionth app download winner, awards $10,000 App Store gift card

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Apple today has officially announced the winner of its $10,000 iTunes gift card giveaway in a press release after reaching 50 billion app downloads yesterday.

And the app that marked the 50 billionth download goes to: Say the Same Thing by Space Inch, LLC. Lucky winner Brandon Ashmore from Mentor, Ohio will be receiving a $10,000 App Store gift card for his download.

Apple’s senior vice president of Internet Software and Services Eddy Cue provided the following statement:

“Apple would like to thank our incredible customers and developers for topping 50 billion apps downloaded,” said Eddy Cue, Apple’s senior vice president of Internet Software and Services. “The App Store completely transformed how people use their mobile devices and created a thriving app ecosystem that has paid out over nine billion dollars to developers. We’re absolutely floored to cross this milestone in less than five years.”

Apple’s full press release below: expand full story

press release Stories May 1, 2013

T-Mobile & MetroPCS complete merger bringing iPhone availability to 9 million new customers

Update: Talking to AllThingsD, T-Mobile CEO John Legere says an iPhone on MetroPCS is a possibility but “not imminent.”

“The answer to that is not ‘No,’” Legere said, but added, “It’s not imminent; I think that’s safe to say.” “It’s also something that involves Apple…. we’ve started those dialogues with our partners.”

We already knew that both company’s boards had approved the merger of T-mobile USA and MetroPCS, but today the No. 4 and No. 5 U.S. carriers have officially announced the merger is now complete. Starting today the two companies will become one and begin trading under the ticker “TMUS” on the New York Stock Exchange:

Under the terms of the business combination agreement, MetroPCS effected a 1 for 2 reverse stock split, made a cash payment of $1.5 billion to its stockholders (approximately $4.05 per share prior to the reverse stock split), and acquired all of T-Mobile’s capital stock from Deutsche Telekom in exchange for approximately 74% of MetroPCS’ common stock on a pro forma basis.

MetroPCS has never offered the iPhone to its 9 million customers, but today’s announcement means the carrier will begin migrating to T-Mobile’s network infrastructure and presumably eventually support the iPhone alongside T-Mobile for its customer base. The new combined company will be lead by T-Mobile CEO John Legere, but for now T-Mobile and MetroPCS will continue to operate as separate brands.

press release Stories April 25, 2013

LinkedIn launches revamped “Contacts” feature alongside new standalone iPhone app

As part of its new revamped Contacts section coming soon for select users on the desktop, LinkedIn today is also launching a standalone Contacts app for iPhone that allows users to manage address books, emails, and calendars by contact and access all content related to specific contacts from one easy to access location. The Contacts app will also provide alerts for changes to jobs and birthdays, and allow you to access meetings and past conversations directly from an individual’s Contacts profile:

LinkedIn Contacts brings together all your address books, emails, and calendars, and keeps them up to date in one place. From these sources, we’ll automatically pull in the details of your past conversations and meetings, and bring these details directly onto your contact’s profile.

The new Contacts service is apparently rolling out over the coming weeks with invitations being sent out to select individuals within the United States. You can already sign up for the wait list through LinkedIn’s new Contacts website here, and the free standalone iOS app is available for download on the App Store now.

Last month LinkedIn launched a redesigned iOS app with a revamped UI and new features.

A full list of features for the new iPhone app below:

• All your contacts in one place – We bring together all of your address books, emails, and calendars, and keep them up to date so you don’t have to

• Never miss an opportunity to stay in touch – Get alerted on job changes and birthdays in your network, a perfect opportunity to say hello

• See where you left off the conversation – Review your most recent correspondence with a contact before picking up the phone

• Discover more about who you’re meeting with – Prepare for your day with details on each person you’re meeting

• Find the right person for the task at hand – Sort contacts by recent conversation and filter by company or location

press release Stories April 8, 2013

Avid announces Pro Tools 11 & new creative tools alongside first iOS-compatible interfaces

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With NAB kicking into full gear today, Avid has announced the latest version of its industry standard digital audio workstation with the launch of Pro Tools 11 alongside its first iOS compatible portable audio interfaces and much more.

Perhaps the biggest Apple related announcement for Avid today is the launch of its first two audio interfaces with direct support for iOS devices. There are many audio interfaces for iPad and iPhone (we’ve reviewed some), but this is the first time Avid is including a USB port and direct support for iPad with its high-quality I/O and Pro Tools software… expand full story

press release Stories April 4, 2013

Apple vs Samsung war moves to retail as Best Buy plans to open 1,400 ‘Samsung Experience Shops’

When we heard late last month that Samsung planned to open Apple-style ‘store-in-store’ locations within Best Buy retail stores it was still only rumor. Today Samsung and Best Buy have made things official for its plans to roll out 1,400 “Samsung Experience Shops” in Best Buy retail stores across the United States. Best Buy plans to have the store within a store Samsung shops up and running by the summer with 900 scheduled to open by May:

The image above shows what a typical Samsung Experience Shop inside Best Buy will look like next to a current Apple store-in-store location.

9to5Google has the full story.

press release Stories March 5, 2013

Apple Store smash-and-grab Canadian style with bear spray

The Vancouver Sun reported police in Vancouver, British Columbia are currently on the lookout for three suspects involved in a robbery of the Oakridge Mall Apple Store on Monday night. The suspects apparently entered the store at 7 p.m. “blasting bear spray then taking off with a number of items” while around 40 customers were still in the store:

Five customers were treated at the scene by paramedics for inhaling the powerful spray, the release said.

“Officers arrived and searched the area for the suspects with the help of a police K-9 unit,” VPD spokesman Const. Brian Montague said in a news release. “Some of the stolen items were recovered, but police were not able to find the three men responsible.”

Authorities are asking anyone with information to contact the Vancouver Police Department. There’s no word on what exactly the suspects got away with.

(image via CTV)

press release Stories December 14, 2012

Dropbox 2.0 lands for iOS, introduces redesigned UI, new photos tab, & easier uploads

Dropbox announced on its blog today the introduction of an all-new iOS app that introduces a redesigned, streamlined UI, a new Photos tab that allows you to scroll through a timeline of your automatically uploaded photos, and improvements to the photo-viewing experience. Dropbox noted that uploads have now been improved, allowing users to ” tap the ‘+’ icon to upload something or create a new folder.”

We’ve packed a ton of love and tiny details into our new iOS design, and we think you’ll dig its simplicity. For example, we got rid of the text labels on our tabs in favor of clean and streamlined iconography. Splashed across the app is the glorious Dropbox blue you’ve come to know and love, and we’ve reduced complexity to make everything feel so fresh and so clean, clean.

press release Stories October 29, 2012

Philips launching app controlled ‘hue personal wireless lighting’ bulbs at Apple Stores tomorrow

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Philips announced today that it would launch what it called “the world’s smartest LED bulb” exclusively at Apple stores starting tomorrow. The bulbs themselves work like any standard light bulb, but they use a bridge plugged into your router to allow you to personalize lighting settings and timers. This of course is not the first app-enabled product for the home to hit Apple Stores. Apple already sold the first and second-generation of the Nest Learning Thermostat.

The hue bulbs provide all “shades of white, from warm white light to cold with light,” as well as a selection of colors and pre-programmed settings. You can even use a photo from your device as a color palette and save and program settings to activate at certain times of day. Philips said the hue bulbs consume 80 percent less power than traditional bulbs.

Philips will sell a hue starter kit at Apple stores tomorrow that consists of three 50Watt hue bulbs and the hue bridge. That will sell for $199. You’ll also have the ability to purchase additional individual bulbs for $60 and add up to 50 to your existing hue bridge.

Philips is even offering the hue app and an open source platform to developers:

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press release Stories September 8, 2012

Avid announces new Pro Tools|HD Native, its first Thunderbolt interface and PCIe card

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Avid, maker of the music industry’s leading digital audio workstation software called Pro Tools, has officially announced its first Thunderbolt interface for Pro Tools with the new Pro Tools|HD Native Thunderbolt interface and PCIe card. Thanks to Thunderbolt, Avid says the new Pro Tools|HD Native provides the “highest performance and lowest latency of any native DAW” yet. As usual, Avid bundles your choice of either the Thunderbolt interface or PCIe card with its Pro Tools HD software, and you will also get a choice of a Pro Tools HD Series audio interface including either the HD OMNI or HD I/O.

In addition to an “audiophile-grade headphone output” powerful enough to drive high impedance headphones, a few of the benefits of the new Thunderbolt interface according to Avid:

Unlike USB- or FireWire-based DAWs, which are inherently prone to latency, Pro Tools|HD Native employs either a high-speed Thunderbolt interface or PCIe core card to connect Pro Tools HD Series interfaces with your laptop or desktop computer. By eliminating distracting monitor latency while recording, increasing your I/O capabilities, and providing 64-bit floating-point processing for more headroom and a higher mix resolution, you get a professional native solution that meets the highest audio standards.

Pricing for the two packages ranges from $4,999 to $5,999, but Avid is also offering Digi 002, Digi 003, and Mbox Pro owners a hardware trade-in worth $1000: expand full story

press release Stories June 18, 2012

Verizon announces ultra-high speed FiOS ‘Quantum’ service, up to 300 Mbps for $210 a month

Verizon announced tiers for its new high-speed Internet FiOS “Quantum” service today. It ranges from $65 to $210 a month, and it is available in double or triple-play bundles and stand-alone plans. Verizon will continue offering its entry-level $65 15/5 Mbps service, but it will introduce new plans including: 50/25 Mbps, 75/35 Mbps, 150/65 Mbps, and 300/65 Mbps. The company noted they are “by a wide margin the nation’s fastest, mass scale residential Internet speeds.”

Three of those speeds ¬¬ 75/35, 150/65 and 300/65 — are twice as fast as those previously offered.1 In addition, Verizon will continue to offer its entry-level speed of 15/5 Mbps… The two highest downstream speed offers – 150 and 300 Mbps – and the new 65 Mbps upstream speed are by a wide margin the nation’s fastest, mass scale residential Internet speeds available. By contrast, the fastest Internet speeds offered by cable-company challengers top out at 105 Mbps downstream and 20 Mbps upstream. (This FiOS Internet speed grid shows specific examples of the benefits of faster downstream and upstream speeds.)

Verizon noted existing customers can upgrade free, but they will on-average pay $10 to $15 more per month. The company also outlined the different pricing options for new customers:

For new customers, prices of triple-play bundles of 15/5 Mbps FiOS Internet, FiOS TV and FiOS Digital Voice unlimited calling will range from $99.99 to $144.99 per month, depending upon which FiOS TV package is ordered. The packages are: Prime, with more than 200 channels and more than 50 HD channels; Extreme, with more than 290 channels and more than 70 HD channels; and Ultimate, with more than 380 channels plus premium movie channels, and more than 110 HD channels).

Double-play bundles of the 15/5 Mbps FiOS Internet and FiOS TV range from $84.99 to $129.99 per month. Stand-alone 15/5 Mbps service costs $69.99 per month on a month-to-month basis, and $64.99 per month with a two-year contract.

Triple-play bundles of the 50/25 Mbps speed range from $109.99 to $149.99 per month for new customers. Double-play bundles with FiOS TV range from $94.99 to $134.99 per month. The stand-alone version costs $79.99 per month on a month-to-month basis, and $74.99 with a two-year contract.

Triple-play bundles of the new 75/35 Mbps speed range from $114.99 to $154.99 per month for new subscribers. Double-play bundles with FiOS TV range from $99.99 to $139.99 per month. The stand-alone costs $89.99 per month on a month-to-month basis, and $84.99 with a two-year contract.

Triple-play bundles of 150/65 Mbps speed range from $169.99 to $174.99 per month for new FiOS customers. Double-play bundles with FiOS TV range from $154.99 to $159.99 per month. The stand-alone costs $99.99 per month on a month-to-month basis, and $94.99 with a two-year contract.

The new 300/65 Mbps tier, offered as a stand-alone only, costs $209.99 per month on a month-to-month basis, and $204.99 with a two-year contract.3

press release Stories April 16, 2012

New iPad launches in 12 more countries this Friday, 9 more on April 27

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Apple just published a press release that confirms the new iPad will launch in 12 additional countries Friday, April 20. Along with the 12 countries listed below, Apple confirmed an April 27 international launch date for nine more countries:

In addition to South Korea, the new iPad also will be available beginning on Friday, April 20 in Brunei, Croatia, Cyprus, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Malaysia, Panama, St Maarten, Uruguay and Venezuela. Beginning on Friday, April 27, the new iPad will be available in Colombia, Estonia, India, Israel, Latvia, Lithuania, Montenegro, South Africa and Thailand.

Go past the break for the full press release. expand full story

press release Stories February 13, 2012

Fair Labor Association begins audits of Apple suppliers at Foxconn City

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Following the release of Apple’s “2012 Supplier Responsibility Report,” Apple announced it would be the first technology company admitted to the Fair Labor Association. The FLA will “independently assess facilities in Apple’s supply chain,” and then publish its independent findings online. Apple announced through a press release today that the first audits have officially started with FLA President Auret van Heerden and his team beginning inspections at Foxconn City in Shenzhen. Apple CEO Tim Cook said the audits are “unprecedented in the electronics industry”: expand full story

press release Stories January 3, 2012

Apple subsidiary FileMaker ships 1M units of Bento database software

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Apple subsidiary FileMaker Inc., just announced they shipped over 1 million units of Bento, their personal database tool currently available for iPhone, iPad and Mac. Originally released in 2008, Bento is now available in seven languages with dedicated clients for iPhone and iPad ($4.99) that sync with Bento for Mac currently available on the Mac App Store for $49.99.

Vice President of Marketing and Services for FileMaker, Inc., Ryan Rosenberg said the following in a statement:

“Bento’s elegance has led to sales of more than a million units, meeting the needs of customers ranging from ranchers and mobile dentists to personal trainers and rock bands. With Bento on your iPad, iPhone, or Mac it’s easy to organize your contacts, track projects, plan events and manage just about anything.”

The full press release is available after the break.

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