Category Archives: iOS Devices

Apple patent granted today shows dockable ‘iTime’ watch concept as well as conventional smartwatch

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A patent application filed by Apple three years ago and approved today illustrates a new twist on the iWatch concept: a sensor-packed strap acting as a dock which allows a range of interchangeable modules to be snapped into place.

It’s not anything we’re likely to see make it into production: the docking concept dates back to 2011, and was probably intended by Apple to house an iPod Nano, converting it into a smartwatch in a more sophisticated version of the watchstraps sold in Apple Stores since way back in 2010. But the patent does tell us two things … 

First, Apple has been working on a smartwatch concept for a long time. Apple has always said that it believes in taking its time and launching a new product only when it is convinced it has everything right. While Wall Street has been impatiently demanding new product categories, Apple has been quietly working away behind the scenes on refining the idea.

Second, the focus on fitness and health has been there from the start: the patent describes the strap containing circuitry for things like a heartrate monitor and motion-sensor.

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For both docking and standalone approaches, Apple describes how gestures could be used to control the device instead of taps and swipes.

The gesture might be a horizontal movement for one user input option (eg decline incoming call), and might be a vertical movement for another user input option (eg accept incoming call)

As ever, Apple patents give us few clues as to what to expect. The company that famously says no a thousand times for every yes patents everything imaginable and implements little of it. So while this will doubtless give fresh impetus to the rumor mill, don’t be surprised if the actual user-interface is a little more conventional.

We’ve heard plenty of iWatch rumors already, among them that it will come in three different models, in line with earlier suggestions of at least two different sizes, and that it will enter mass production in November. Morgan Stanley has suggested that the ecosystem and brand loyalty could see iWatch sales grow as fast as the iPhone or iPad.

As 9to5Mac has previously reported, Apple has assembled a team of health, fitness, and fashion experts to work on the project.

Via AppleInsider


Filed under: AAPL Company, iOS Devices Tagged: Apple, iPhone, IPod Nano, iWatch, Morgan Stanley, Patent, Wall Street

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Here’s what analysts expect Apple to announce today: revenue up 8.5 percent, earnings up 18 percent

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With Fortune having now filled in the blanks in its analyst roundup, above are the final numbers Wall Street expects Apple to announce at around 1.30pm PT/4.30pm ET this afternoon.

With all 34 analysts having revealed their predictions, the consensus view is for year-on-year revenue to have grown by 8.5 percent, with earnings up 18.1 percent … 

Unsurprisingly, the bulk of that growth is expected to be from iPhone sales, which are expected to have climbed by 14.5 percent. CIRP yesterday indicated that Q3 sales are likely to include a higher percentage of flagship models than was the case last year.

Mac sales, accessory sales and iTunes revenues are all expected to be up on last year, while iPad sales are predicted to be flat. iPod sales are expected to have almost halved, Apple describing it as a “declining business.”

The rise in iPhone sales is large attributed to Chinese and Japanese sales. In addition to the high profile China Mobile and NTT DoCoMo deals, Apple added 49 other international carriers last year.

As ever, we’ll bring you the actual numbers as soon as Apple announces them, with live coverage of the earnings call that follows.


Filed under: AAPL Company, iOS Devices, Mac Tagged: AAPL, AAPL Q3 2014, AAPL Q3 2014 earnings, AAPL Q3 2014 financials, AAPL Q3 2014 results, Apple, China Mobile, iPad, iPhone, iPod, iTunes, NTT DoCoMo, Wall Street

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Chinese sellers taking iPhone 6 pre-orders two months before anticipated launch

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It might be two months before the rumored launch date of the iPhone 6, with a working phone yet to be sighted and no clue as to the retail price, but that isn’t stopping sellers taking pre-orders, reports the WSJ.

More than thirty sellers on Alibaba’s Taobao marketplace said they can help purchase the upcoming new iPhone 6s from the U.S. and Hong Kong. But there’s one catch: consumers have to pay a deposit ranging from 500 yuan ($80)  to 7,999 yuan ($1288).

One seller even went as far as putting together a laughable mockup of an Apple webpage for the iPhone 6 (the full page can be seen below).

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Another seller claimed the price of the unsubsidized 4.7-inch model would start at 5,288 yuan ($851) , with the  5.5-inch version starting at 5,988 yuan ($964), but there is absolutely no reason to think they have any information on Apple’s pricing plans.

Back in the real world, it’s been reported that Apple is looking to produce 70-80M iPhone 6 handsets by the end of the year, with production expected to begin imminently after Foxconn confirmed hiring 100,000 new workers for the project.

Here, for your amusement, is that full hilarious attempt at mocking up the iPhone 6 page on the Apple website (complete with the line that it was ‘made for iOS 7′) …

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Filed under: AAPL Company, iOS Devices Tagged: Alibaba, Apple, Apple China, china, Foxconn, Hong Kong, iPhone, iPhone 6, Taobao

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Changing the lives of people with Alzheimer’s, one iPod and one playlist at a time

Alive Inside, a documentary film being shown in selected theaters across the U.S., tells the story of a social worker using iPods and personalized playlists to bring new life to nursing home residents with Alzheimer’s.

Dan Cohen puts together playlists of music from when the patients were young, transfers them to an iPod and then plays them to patients who had been unresponsive to conversation, generating dramatic transformations, reports Re/code.

Audiences first encounter Henry hunched over in his wheelchair, head down, hands clasped firmly together, unresponsive to the world around him.

As soon as a pair of headphones are placed on his head, the 94-year-old dementia patient opens his eyes, sits up straight and begins swaying and humming along with the music. Henry speaks animatedly about his favorite band leader, Cab Calloway, and even begins to emulate the jazz artist’s style of scat singing — at one point launching into a rendition of “I’ll Be Home for Christmas.”

Cohen discovered that music tapped into parts of the brain that could not be reached in other ways, and could revitalize people even in late-stage dementia, “demonstrating music’s ability to combat memory loss and restore a deep sense of self to those suffering from it.”

Described as “a joyous cinematic exploration of music’s capacity to reawaken our souls and uncover the deepest parts of our humanity,” Alive Inside won the Audience Award at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival. Apple is reportedly helping to promote the film, and a list of theaters where the film can be seen is available here.


Filed under: AAPL Company, iOS Devices Tagged: Alzheimer's disease, Dan Cohen, Dementia, Documentary film, Health, iPod, Music, Music therapy, Sundance Film Festival

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WSJ: Apple prepares record number of 80 million 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch iPhones for production

The Wall Street Journal reports that Apple has told its suppliers to prepare to build a record number of next-gen iPhones. According to the Journal, Apple is looking to produce 70-80 million units by December 30th. As reported earlier this month, both the 4.7-inch and the larger 5.5-inch models of the upcoming iPhone are expected to enter mass production in the coming weeks.

This is a big jump from the previous iPhone models. Last year the company only ordered 50-60 million of the iPhone 5s and 5c. Manufacturing parter Foxconn recently hired as many as 100,000 new workers to help meet the increased demand, and even ordered a custom line of robotic equipment to facilitate the production of iPhone 6.

The larger of the two models is rumored to be experiencing some manufacturing difficulties, however, and could potentially be delayed until early 2015, though some reports say both versions will ship simultaneously later this year. As noted by the Wall Street Journal:

For Apple, one possible hiccup with the larger screen is that display makers for the new iPhones are struggling to improve the production of the larger 5.5-inch screens, people familiar with the matter said. The production is complicated because the displays are using in-cell technology, which allows the screens to be thinner and lighter by integrating touch sensors into the liquid crystal display and making it unnecessary to have a separate touch-screen layer.

We’ve seen a host of leaks for the 4.7-inch device in recent weeks, as well as a few for the 5.5-inch variant, though leaks of the larger model seem to be harder to come by. The unannounced phone’s sapphire crystal display was put through a series of stress tests on video and its audio and lightning ports showed up in online photos.


Filed under: iOS Devices Tagged: Foxconn, iPhone 6, production

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iTunes Festival app updated for London 2014, brings new design

 

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This morning, Apple announced a new iTunes Festival for the United Kingdom, featuring over sixty bands, for September. The iTunes Festival app has now been updated to relay this information and exhibits the design style and iconography for the 2014 show. Because this is a UK show, the app is only available in the UK iTunes Store.

Currently, the app doesn’t feature much content — simply linking out to the iTunes Store app to enter the raffle for tickets. When the 2014 iTunes Festival starts, the app will stream the gigs alongside other related content. The festival will also be shown on Apple TV.

The app was last updated earlier this year for the corresponding 2014 show in the US.


Filed under: iOS, iOS Devices Tagged: App Store, Apple, iOS, iTune, iTunes Festival, London, Pharrell Williams, United Kingdom

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Apple seeds iOS 8 beta 4 to developers with redesigned Control Center, Health improvements, more

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Apple today released iOS 8 beta 4 to developers. It is now available via Software Update in Settings for those running earlier betas of iOS 8 on the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. The new update likely brings further design enhancements and bug fixes. iOS 8 comes out this fall and adds new features like health tracking, improved messaging, more efficient email management, and bolstered photo editing. We’ll be updating this post (below) as we discover new changes, and you can send us what you find to tips@9to5mac.com.

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- New Settings Menu for Display, Text Size, and Bold text

IMG_0212 copy- New HomeKit icon for data privacy

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- New options for Messages history

- Animation is slightly slower when moving in and out of multitasking

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- Control Center completely redesigned

- Bug Reporter application has been removed.

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- New option to disable Lock screen app suggestions

- New Tips app: full post and galley on that here.

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- Tweaked Emoji icon in Messages

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- Minor tweaks to Multitasking mode’s frequent contacts section

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- Update Home and Lock screen icon in Battery Usage preferences

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- Health app splits calories into Dietary Calories, Active Calories, and Resting Calories

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- You can now disable showing Multitasking view’s Recent Contacts via Mail, Contacts, and Calendars settings

- Improved settings for gestures in Mail

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- EU Roaming option for Cellular Data in Europe


Filed under: iOS, iOS Devices Tagged: Apple TV, beta, beta 4, developers, fall, Health, iOS 8, iPad, iPhone, IPod Touch, OS X, Xcode, yosemite

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