Archive for March, 2014

Apple launches TD-LTE iPad Air and Retina iPad mini models in China

Screen Shot 2014-03-31 at 7.22.41 PM

Apple has released new versions of the iPad Air and iPad mini with Retina display in China to support the area’s TD-LTE networks. This brings high-speed capable versions of the late-2013 iPad models to China for the first time:

BEIJING―April 1, 2014―Apple® today announced TD-LTE capable models of iPad Air™ and iPad mini™ with Retina® display, bringing high-speed LTE performance* to iPad® customers in China, are available starting today. The new iPad models give customers the ability to connect to today’s most advanced cellular data networks at blazingly fast speeds, so users can surf the web or download email and apps even faster. iPad Air and iPad mini with Retina display models supporting TD-LTE also accommodate the TD-SCDMA mobile standard, and join existing iPad Air and iPad mini with Retina display WLAN + Cellular models in support of Personal Hotspot connectivity and other advanced cellular technology (GSM/EDGE, DC-HSDPA, HSPA+) to provide customers in China fast cellular access in whichever iPad model they choose.

The 16 GB model sells for RMB 4,488, while the prices for larger capacities go as high as RMB 6,588 for the 128 GB model. iOS 7.1 builds previously indicated that a few new iPad models were en route, and this announcement seems to answer what those models are. This announcement marks yet another minor iPad change this year, with Apple recently re-introducing the fourth-generation iPad.


Filed under: AAPL Company

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Mark Gurman

March 31st

Apple

Mac

This Demake Of Legend Of Zelda Is Most Fun You Can Have With Colored Squares

It's dangerous to go alone! Go play The Legend Of Zelda, deconstructed and reduced to its component concepts! You are Link, a green square, and your mission is to kill Ganon (probably a dark block). Along the way you'll grab a sword (a brown block) and fight all sorts of monsters, from Octoroks to Moblins (represented by blinking colors). Read More

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John Biggs

March 31st

Gadgets

One Company Betting On Oculus Rift As The Platform For VR HR Training

The Oculus Rift and its creator Oculus VR have been purchased by Facebook, and that's causing some, including Minecraft developer Mojang, to reconsider their projects for the platform. But others are doubling down on their Oculus investment, including Technology Transfer Services (TTS), a company that designs training software for workforce education. Read More

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Darrell Etherington

March 31st

Gadgets

Apple to hold second quarter earnings call on April 23rd

Screenshot 2014-03-31 17.48.14

 

Apple has just announced that it will hold its quarterly investor conference call on April 23rd at 5 PM. As usual, Apple executives will go over all of the sales and earnings for the second quarter of 2014. The company will also likely continue teasing “new product categories” to be announced later this year.

The first half of FY2014 hasn’t been especially full of new Apple products. Instead, the company has focused on revising its existing lineup. It launched an 8 GB iPhone 5c in five markets to help boost lagging sales, re-launched the 4th-generation iPad to replace the ancient iPad 2, and pushed out the first major iOS 7 update since the operating system was released.


Filed under: AAPL Company

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Mike Beasley

March 31st

Apple

Mac

Several potential jurors dismissed from Apple v Samsung patent hearing over connections to either company

As the latest patent dispute between Apple and Samsung kicked off in court today, the search for unbiased jury members to serve with Judge Koh began today resulting in a standing room-only environment in the court room with over 100 potential jurors summoned.

While the process begins with a number of prospective jurors, the first day is meant to dismiss those with a preconceived bias against either party involved for any reason.

If today’s reporting from several different case watchers is any indication, finding an unbiased jury without any connection to Apple, Samsung, or Google in California is easier said than done.

The first few potential jurors to be dismissed expressed that they had skin in the game…

The next subject of focus was an iPad-toting LinkedIn engineer that thinks both companies abuse patents. He stayed… for now.

Following the LinkedIn engineer was a Cupertino native. Samsung’s representative wasn’t pleased, but Judge Koh saw it acceptable.

Now more potential jurors with connections to tech companies…

…and someone with a relative working on a secret project at Google? Tell me more!

Finally, potential jurors with stock in either company were dismissed. Why did they have to wait all afternoon?

That included the iPad-carrying LinkedIn engineer.

And with that, we’re down to about 25 prospective jurors. The court must choose 10 before the trial can begin. We’ll keep an eye on this space, of course, and share any fascinating developments along the way.


Filed under: AAPL Company Tagged: Apple, icourt, Judge Koh, Patent Disputes, Samsung

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Zac Hall

March 31st

Apple

Mac

HTC One (M8) Review: The New Best Android Smartphone

There’s a new contender for Android top dog on the market, and it’s the HTC One (M8), the latest from the Taiwanese firm. This metal-clad unibody slab inherits the good looks of its predecessor, last year’s HTC One (retroactively referred to as the M7), but refines the look and adds a lot of significant software changes, too. It makes the new One a great device, and well worth a… Read More

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Darrell Etherington

March 31st

Gadgets

Mobile

United Nations uses iBeacons to simulate a minefield & raise awareness at NY museum

UN-Land-Mine-01

We’ve been seeing more and more interesting implementations of iBeacons, Apple’s Bluetooth LE standard that opens up a ton of opportunities for location-based experiences as iOS devices communicate with the beacons around them. This, however, might be the most unique use of iBeacons we’ve seen yet:  For the UN’s International Day for Mine Awareness and Assistance in Mine Action taking place on April 4, New Museum in New York City will host an exhibit that uses iBeacons to simulate a virtual minefield and let anyone experience the danger of land mines.

Visitors will download an app called Sweeper for iOS or Android that will allow them to experience the fear of land mines as they walk through the space. Here’s how it works:

The Sweeper exhibit is a live experience of a virtual minefield. When used at a UN event, Sweeper (www.getsweeper.com) is the app that allows anyone to experience the fear of living with land mines (App is going live on April 3). Using iBeacon, a low energy Bluetooth technology to find a phone’s location, the Sweeper app detects transmitters hidden throughout the exhibit. When a person comes too close to a transmitter, it acts as a landmine and detonates, filling the user’s headphones with a jarring, visceral explosion followed by an audio testimony of someone’s actual experience. Users are then invited to make a small donation of $5 to help ensure no one ever has to go through what they just did.

Retail and event venues have been using iBeacon technology to beam location-based notifications and offers as well as speed up check-in procedures by automatically recognizing the user’s device. We’ve also seen apps that let users setup their own iBeacon experience, like the Placed app for context-aware app launching at home and BeHere, an app that automatically takes attendance as students enter the classroom.

The digital minefield exhibit is opening to the public from 11am to 3pm on April 4th and is being hosted by the United Nations Mine Action Service, Critical Mass, and photographer Marco Grob. United Nations will also be taking $5 donations for the cause.

A mock up of what the exhibit will look like is below:

Screen Shot 2014-03-31 at 2.07.13 PM


Filed under: Apps Tagged: April 4, awareness, exhibit, iBeacons, land mine, Marco Grob, minefield, museum, New Museum, New York, United Nations, United Nations Mine action service

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Jordan Kahn

March 31st

Apple

Mac

Apple adjusting App Store prices for several currencies

As it has previously done from time to time, Apple has announced to developers in an email (seen above) that it will be adjusting App Store prices in a number of countries to address changes in foreign exchange rates.

Prices in Australia, India, Indonesia, Turkey, and South Africa that use the currencies listed above will automatically see an increase on the App Store over the following 24 hour period, Apple says.

Apple has also announced prices listed with the Israeli New Shekels and some listings using the New Zealand Dollar will actually see App Store prices decrease per recent changes in the foreign exchange rate.


Filed under: AAPL Company Tagged: App Store, app store prices, Apple, Australian dollar, foreign exchange rate, indian rupee, indonesian rupiah, south african rand, turkish lira

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Zac Hall

March 31st

Apple

Mac

Rdio, Crackle, & Vudu updated with Chromecast streaming support

chromecast

Adding to the catalog of Chromecast-supported content, Rdio and Crackle are both adding the ability to play more content from your smartphone, tablet, or browser to your TV today.

Crackle has refreshed its Android and iOS apps with support for Chromecast streaming. The Sony-backed content provider serves up a number of movies and TV shows for free including comedian Jerry Seinfield’s “Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee” original.

Video streaming service Vudu has also added Chromecast support in the latest versions of its Android and iOS apps. The Walmart-owned service includes HD movies and TV shows with no subscription.

Rdio announcement includes support for music streaming from its Rdio app to your TV for Google Chromecast users. That means users can control music from the Android or iOS app as it plays through the TV with the Chrome HDMI streaming stick. Rdio users can also stream to Chromecast-connected TVs with Google’s Chrome web browser.

“Rdio on Google Chromecast marks another milestone in Rdio’s commitment to delivering the best music experience everywhere,” said Anthony Bay, chief executive officer of Rdio. “Music fans can access Rdio’s massive catalog of over 20 million songs or start a station easily, all from Chromecast on their TV.”

Google’s Chromecast HDMI streaming stick goes for $35, and an Rdio subscription starts at $4.99 (web only) to $9.99 (unlimited) and $14.99 (in-app purchase rate). Rdio also offers a limited, free tier for users to try.


Filed under: Apps Tagged: Chrome, Chromecast, Crackle, movies, Music Streaming, Rdio, seinfield, TV shows, Vudu

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Zac Hall

March 31st

Apple

Mac

MLB At Bat app updated for 2014 season w/ new expanded instant replay feature

MLB-At-Bat-replay

This season will be the first that Major League Baseball uses a new expanded instant replay system that it first announced back in January. Now, the MLB At Bat app for iOS devices has been updated with support for the 2014 season and the new replay system. That means that users of the app will be able to view “every decisive instant replay video clip and review explanation,” the same footage the umpires review, through the app’s Gameday feature. 

A little more on the new replay system from the MLB’s announcement:

MLB’s new system of instant replay dictates which plays are subject to review, how instant replay will be initiated by field managers and how the review process will be conducted. As a part of the expansion of instant replay, Clubs will now be allowed to show all replays on the ballpark scoreboard, regardless of whether the play was reviewed…. Managers will have at least one challenge to use. If any portion of a challenged play is overturned, then the manager who challenged the play will retain the ability to challenge one more play during the game. No manager may challenge more than two plays in a game. Once the manager has exhausted his ability to challenge plays during the game and after the beginning of the seventh inning, the Crew Chief may choose to invoke instant replay on any reviewable call. Home run and other boundary calls will remain reviewable under the procedures in place last season.

The MLB At Bat app provides those with a $2.99/monthly or $19.99/year subscription (or MLB.TV Premium subscribers) with access to a ton of video content including the MLB.TV Game of the Day and every out of market game through MLB.TV Premium. It also offers a long list of other features such as highlights, scoreboards, news, stats, radio broadcasts and much more.

The updated MLB At Bat app is available on the App Store now for iPhone and iPad.

A look behind the scenes at installing the equipment necessary for the MLB’s new expanded instant replay system is below:


Filed under: Apps Tagged: 2014 season, Android, at bat, expanded instant replay, Gameday, iOS, MLB, MLB At Bat, Opening Day, Replay, update

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Jordan Kahn

March 31st

Apple

Mac
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