posted about 9 hours ago on mac rumors
In iOS 10, Apple plans to make some changes to the way videos are handled, putting a stop to irritating autoplay videos and offering improvements to animated GIFs. The changes will come in the form of updated policies for "video" elements, as outlined today by Apple software engineer Jer Noble on the Webkit blog As iOS 8 and iOS 9 users know, an animated GIF encoded using "video" tags requires users to tap on the GIF to play it as a video would play, creating a frustrating user experience. When viewing such a GIF, it's currently necessary to load the image, tap it to play, and wait for it to be displayed full screen. In iOS 10, the user experience is being simplified. Going forward, Webkit will allow videos with no audio element or a muted audio element to honor autoplay attributes, so GIFs and videos in this format will no longer require a tap to play automatically. Videos that use the "video playsinline" element will also be able to play inline without the need to enter fullscreen mode. At the same time, videos that do have an audio element will be automatically paused and will require a user gesture to play, cutting down on irritating advertisements and other spam-type videos. Autoplay video elements will play only when on screen and will pause whenever they are not visible, which will help to preserve battery life.Starting in iOS 10, WebKit relaxes its inline and autoplay policies to make these presentations possible, but still keeps in mind sites' bandwidth and users' batteries. [...] We believe that these new policies really make video a much more useful tool for designing modern, compelling websites without taxing users bandwidth or batteries.GIFs that use the video element have smaller file sizes and thus use less bandwidth and less energy, making them an appealing alternative to the GIF format. Displaying GIFs this way is growing in popularity, and iOS users will no longer have a subpar viewing GIF experience on popular sites like Imgur. The full Webkit video policies and use case examples are available through the Webkit blog post. The changes to Safari will be implemented as part of iOS 10, currently available to developers and public beta testers. iOS 10 will see a release this fall, likely alongside new iOS devices.Related Roundup: iOS 10 Tag: Safari Discuss this article in our forums

Read More...
posted about 14 hours ago on mac rumors
Apple is working on iPhones with iris scanning capabilities that could debut in 2018, reports DigiTimes in a wider piece about increasing interest in advanced biometric functionality in smartphones. Iris scanning would potentially be used in place of Touch ID as a way to verify a user's identity, performing functions like making payments and unlocking an iOS device. Each person's iris, or the circular colored muscle of the eye, contains a complex and random pattern that is unique to each individual, much like a fingerprint. An iris recognition machine at the Schiphzl Airport Apple has been rumored to be looking into iris scanning in the past and it is a technology that is gaining interest in the smartphone arena. Samsung is said to be planning to debut its iris recognition technology as soon as next month with the introduction of the Galaxy Note 7. Current iris scanning implementations have some notable benefits over Touch ID, including no need for direct contact to unlock a device and faster unlock speeds, but there are also drawbacks such as poor functionality in low lighting and issues with performance following alcohol consumption and eye surgery. DigiTimes is not always a reliable source of information, so the rumor should be viewed with some skepticism until confirmed, but KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo also believes Apple is planning on introducing new biometric features in a future iPhone, which could include either facial or iris scanning. Kuo's rumor pertained to the 2017 iPhone, but it's always possible such an advanced feature won't be ready to debut until a later date. There are no rumors about the 2018 iPhone as of yet, but it will follow the 2017 iPhone, which is rumored to feature radical design changes in the form of an edge-to-edge OLED display with no home button and a camera and Touch ID sensor that are integrated into the screen. Wireless charging, a faster A11 processor, and a fully glass body like the iPhone 4 are also possibilities for the device and will likely also be seen in the follow-up 2018 iPhone.Related Roundup: iPhone 8 (2017) Discuss this article in our forums

Read More...
posted about 15 hours ago on mac rumors
Apple has appointed former longtime executive Bob Mansfield, who last served as Senior Vice President of Technologies at the company, to oversee development of its widely rumored electric vehicle, according to The Wall Street Journal. All senior managers on the project now report to him. Apple announced that Mansfield was retiring in June 2012, but a few months later said he would remain with the company as an advisor. He last worked on Apple's "Special Projects" team, reporting directly to CEO Tim Cook, and has made regular appearances on campus despite stepping down from day-to-day work four years ago.Until recently, Mr. Mansfield—who, along with design chief Jony Ive, was one of the few executives to appear in Apple’s carefully-crafted product announcement videos—had all but retreated from the company aside from the occasional visit, these people said. Earlier this month, employees at Apple noticed in the company directory that all the senior managers on the car project were now reporting to Mr. Mansfield, they said.Apple has reportedly recruited hundreds of engineers from the likes of Tesla, Ford, GM, and elsewhere to work on the so-called Apple Car, codenamed "Project Titan" internally. The electric vehicle could be street-ready between 2019 and 2021 according to various reports, with R&D based in Sunnyvale, California. Mansfield joined Apple in 1999 and has been instrumental in the company's recent success, overseeing the development of past MacBook Air, iPhone, and iPad designs. Under the Special Projects team, he also played a role behind the Apple Watch. His decision to remain at Apple in 2012 was influenced by both a generous compensation package and former iOS chief Scott Forstall's departure. Steve Zadesky, who had reportedly been overseeing development of the electric vehicle project since 2014, left the company earlier this year for personal reasons. Project Titan as a whole was previously under Dan Riccio, Senior Vice President of Hardware Engineering, according to Rene Ritchie.Related Roundup: Apple Car Tag: Bob Mansfield Discuss this article in our forums

Read More...
posted about 16 hours ago on mac rumors
Apple will report its fiscal third quarter earnings results tomorrow, and both the company and analysts project a year-over-year decline in iPhone sales and overall revenue for a second consecutive quarter. Apple expects third quarter revenue of between $41 billion and $43 billion, which would be up to 18 percent lower than the $49.6 billion in revenue it posted in the year-ago quarter. The consensus among analysts is around $42.1 billion in revenue, which is essentially the midpoint of Apple's guidance. Analysts estimate that Apple sold at least another 40 million iPhones during the June quarter, raising lifetime sales of the smartphone to some 987 million. Applying that sales rate to July -- just over 13 million iPhones per month -- it is likely that Apple will have sold its billionth iPhone between now and the end of this month. The milestone comes at a time when iPhone sales are on the decline for the first time since the smartphone launched in 2007, an arguably inevitable lull following the smash-hit success of the larger-screened iPhone 6 series. The decline has affected Apple shares, which are down around 21 percent from a 52-week high of $123.91. Nevertheless, many Wall Street firms expect iPhone growth to resume in 2017. The good news could extend to Apple's stock, as The Wall Street Journal yesterday reported that its "shares have been punished more than enough" and are due for a rally. It said the decline in iPhone sales "appears priced in."Still, Apple has been punished more than enough. The iPhone slump appears priced in. And while the next iPhone, expected later this year, likely won’t be a significant upgrade, there is optimism that sales growth will soon bounce back. Analysts forecast iPhone unit sales will rise 5% for fiscal 2017, which ends next September.After briefly touching the $100 mark last week for the first time since early June, Apple shares are currently trading around the $98 mark, a price that some analysts feel undervalues the company. Apple analyst Brian White of Drexel Hamilton reiterated his "buy" rating for AAPL today, based on a projected price target of $185. UBS analyst Steven Milunovich also issued a "buy" rating today with a 12-month price target of $115. Apple is expected to introduce a wide range of new products in the second half of 2016 that could further raise its stock price, including the iPhone 7, Apple Watch 2, and long-awaited 2016 MacBook Pro. Apple's third quarter earnings results will be released at 1:30 p.m. Pacific Time, followed by a conference call with CEO Tim Cook and CFO Luca Maestri at 2:00 p.m. Pacific Time. MacRumors will be providing live coverage of the news.Tag: AAPL Discuss this article in our forums

Read More...
posted about 20 hours ago on mac rumors
Amidst the recent flurry of videos and images of iPhone 7 mockups coming out of China, one pair of pictures that emerged over the weekend claims to offer evidence of Apple's successor to the first iteration 12.9-inch iPad Pro. Sent in to AppleInsider and said to originate from a Chinese supplier, the combined image below shows a device identified with model number MH1C2CD/F, which has yet to be assigned to an iPad by Apple so far. While the identifier proves little, the nomenclature is in line with Apple's existing numbering convention for its iPad Pro range, and Apple is due to refresh its largest tablet this fall. AppleInsider notes that the device's screen shows a 12GB capacity, which is just enough for installing an OS and apps for internal testing and debugging, suggesting the device could be a pre-production model or prototype. Based on previous updates to the company's tablet range, customers can expect a new 12.9-inch iPad Pro to feature a faster A10X processor and a better camera, with a good chance it will inherit the True Tone display seen in the 9.7-inch iPad Pro. 3D Touch is also a possibility, although Apple would need to have overcome the challenges involved in porting the technology to a larger screen. Apple is also expected to launch thinner and lighter MacBook Pro models this fall, with some rumors suggesting a dynamic OLED touch panel could feature as part of a planned redesign. Related Roundup: iPad Pro Buyer's Guide: 12.9" iPad Pro (Neutral) Discuss this article in our forums

Read More...
posted 1 day ago on mac rumors
Ford has announced that its SYNC 3 infotainment system, which includes CarPlay and Android Auto, is now available across its entire 2017 lineup of cars, SUVs, light trucks, and electric vehicles in the United States. The expansion brings CarPlay to already-released 2017 models such as the Fusion, Mustang, and Explorer, while other models like the 2017 F-150, Focus, Edge, and Super Duty will arrive at U.S. dealerships later this year. Ford confirmed in January that it would be adding CarPlay and Android Auto to all of its 2017 vehicles in North America equipped with BlackBerry's QNX-based SYNC 3 platform, starting with the 2017 Escape in May. Ford has also added Spotify, Pandora, Ford PASS, AccuWeather, and AAA member services to SYNC AppLink. In December, Ford retroactively added Siri Eyes Free support to 5 million 2011-2016 vehicles through a SYNC 3.8 software update. The automaker says more than 15 million SYNC-equipped vehicles are on the road worldwide today, although that figure likely includes older SYNC platforms incompatible with CarPlay and Android Auto. Ford is also adding CarPlay and Android Auto to its 2016 vehicles equipped with SYNC 3 as an over-the-air software update. CarPlay brings Maps, Phone, Messages, Music, Podcasts, and a number of third-party apps, such as Spotify, to a vehicle's dashboard. Apple's in-car software platform can be controlled with Siri and your vehicle's built-in controls for convenient access to common iPhone features. It is compatible with iPhone 5 and later models. CarPlay widely launched in the second half of 2015, and the rollout has extended to several large automakers this year, including Chrysler, Dodge, and Jeep; BMW and Nissan; and Hyundai and Kia. CarPlay is now available in over 100 new 2016 and 2017 models, while two notable holdouts include Toyota and Mazda.Related Roundup: CarPlay Tags: Android Auto, Ford, Ford SYNC Discuss this article in our forums

Read More...
posted 3 days ago on mac rumors
Well-known mobile phone leaker Evan Blass has this morning predicted which week of September that Apple will announce the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus. Blass, who has accurately leaked images and details about unreleased smartphones on Twitter (@evleaks) in the past, tweeted today simply "iPhone 2016 release: week of September 12th." Blass is better known for leaking Android-based smartphone details ahead of their official confirmation, but his prediction for the iPhone 7's launch falls in line with Apple's typical September iPhone announcements – the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus launched on September 9th, 2015 – making it a pretty safe bet. iPhone 2016 release: week of September 12th.— Evan Blass (@evleaks) July 23, 2016 Blass's prediction follows a tweet by the blogger four days earlier in which he claimed the internal codenames for Apple's upcoming iPhones are "Sonora" and "Dos Palos", without specifying which is which (although the latter is a small city in California; the former is a Mexican state). Apple's codenames for the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus were "N71" and "N66", respectively. This year's iterations of Apple's flagship smartphones are widely expected not to feature major design changes aside from the removal of the headphone jack, as the company is said to be deviating from its standard tick-tock upgrade cycle in order to introduce major new features in next year's 10th anniversary "iPhone 8" which take time to develop. This year the 4.7-inch iPhone 7 is expected to get an improved camera and optical image stabilization, while the larger 5.5-inch model is thought to be gaining a dual-lens camera and 3GB of RAM. Other rumored features of this year's iPhones include a faster TSMC-made Apple A10 processor, repositioned antenna bands, faster LTE and Wi-Fi, a slightly larger battery, and a minimum 32GB of base storage. A larger 256GB model may also be available.Related Roundup: iPhone 7 Tag: Evan Blass Discuss this article in our forums

Read More...
posted 4 days ago on mac rumors
Ultra popular augmented reality game Pokémon Go set a new App Store record during its first week of availability, seeing more first week downloads than any other app in App Store history. Apple unveiled the statistic to iMore's Rene Ritchie this morning. According to Apple, #PokemonGo has set an @AppStore record with more downloads in its first week than any other app in the Store’s history.— Rene Ritchie (@reneritchie) July 22, 2016 Pokémon Go was first released in Australia, New Zealand, and the United States on July 5, rolling out to other countries over the course of the next two weeks. Pokémon Go is now available in 30 countries around the world. Despite server issues and in-game bugs that have yet to be resolved, Pokémon Go has become a smash hit, luring players outside to explore their neighborhoods in search of Pokémon. Last week, Pokémon Go had earned an estimated 7.5 million downloads in the United States alone, hauling in more than $1.6 million each day, and at two weeks, that number had grown to 21 million daily active users. On the instant success of Pokémon Go, Nintendo shares jumped more than 25 percent, and businesses and restaurants near PokéStops, where players can collect items and find Pokémon, have reported significant increases in foot traffic. In Japan, Pokémon Go today launched with a McDonald's sponsorship deal, hinting at future methods Niantic will use to monetize the game. In Japan, McDonald's locations are marked as "Gyms" where players can battle each other for control of the spot to earn daily prizes and experience. Over the course of the next year, Apple could make upwards of $3 billion in revenue from Pokémon Go, as it receives a 30 percent cut of all in-app purchases.Tag: Pokémon GO Discuss this article in our forums

Read More...
posted 4 days ago on mac rumors
With just over six weeks remaining until Apple is expected to unveil the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus, leaked photos and rumors surrounding the smartphones are starting to become clear and consistent. Deutsche Bank is the latest group to add its expectations to the mix, issuing a research note obtained by Business Insider that corroborates several previously rumored features coming in this year's refresh. New photo of iPhone 7 and 7 Plus rear shell molds (Image: KK低调 on Weibo) The bank, which allegedly made supply chain checks, believes the 4.7-inch model will have an improved camera and optical image stabilization, while the larger 5.5-inch model is set to gain a dual-lens camera and 3GB of RAM. Both models are also expected to have no headphone jack, a touch-sensitive home button with haptic feedback, a new darker color, "professional class" waterproofing, and improved sound, possibly by way of stereo speakers. Perhaps the most interesting bit is Deutsche Bank's belief that the iPhone 7 will ship with a Lightning-to-3.5mm headphone jack dongle in the box, rather than Lightning-based EarPods as previously speculated. Many aftermarket Lightning-to-3.5mm adapters are bulky and clunky looking due to the need for a digital-to-analog converter, however, so it remains to be seen if Apple could create a dongle that meets its high standards of design. Every single one of Deutsche Bank's predictions have surfaced previously: - No 3.5mm headphone jack: WSJ, Fast Company, Mac Otakara, and many others - Dual-lens camera for iPhone 7 Plus: Ming-Chi Kuo, Mac Otakara, and many others - 3GB of RAM for iPhone 7 Plus: Ming-Chi Kuo - Touch-sensitive home button: DigiTimes, Cowen and Company - Improved waterproofing: WSJ, Fast Company, DigiTimes, Commercial Times, Weibo - Stereo speakers: DigiTimes, Mac Otakara - A new darker color: Mac Otakara and leaked photo - Lightning-to-3.5mm adapter: Mac Otakara Apple is widely expected to announce the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus in September. Other rumored features include a faster TSMC-made Apple A10 processor, repositioned antenna bands, faster LTE and Wi-Fi, a slightly larger battery, and a minimum 32GB of base storage. A larger 256GB model may also be available.Related Roundup: iPhone 7 Discuss this article in our forums

Read More...
posted 4 days ago on mac rumors
FutureBrand recently released the results of a survey that questioned 3,000 consumers about the 100 biggest companies in the world, asking them to score each company on 18 different factors like trust, innovation, individuality, and price premium. The 2016 results crowned Apple as the top company in the world, "in terms of perception strength, rather than financial strength" (via CNET). Some of the highest marks Apple received this year surrounded its individuality, authenticity, and purpose, while it scored less well in resource management, wellbeing, and respect among the consumers surveyed. Compared to the second-place entry in the Top 100 listing, Microsoft, Apple edges out ever so slightly in personality and consistency, while customers questioned believed Microsoft to be more innovative than Apple. Technology companies occupy the top two spots in this year’s rankings and enjoy strong perceptions across our measures. Six of the twenty four ‘future brands’ are in the technology sector – one fewer than in 2015. A ‘future brand’ is a brand that is more likely to succeed in the future, not just one that is strong now. This is because it perfectly balances strong perceptions of its purpose in the world with the experience it delivers. Apple's 2016 win comes after it lost the top spot to Google last year, but a bit of behind-the-scenes reorganization seems to be the reason for the search engine company's egress from FutureBrand's list this year. Since Google is considered wholly part of parent company Alphabet, only the latter could appear as a contender for Apple's first place spot. But consumer knowledge -- or lack thereof -- surrounding Alphabet and its relationship with Google most likely led to Alphabet's 21st place ranking. The rest of the top spots are rounded out by companies like Disney, Amazon, Samsung, Toyota, and Facebook. Specifically in the Technology Sector, Apple's numbers rise even higher. The Cupertino company is 36 percent above the sector average when it comes to thought leadership, and 33 percent above the average in terms of consistency in producing high quality products. Similarly, many survey respondents confirmed they would like to work for Apple (37 percent above sector average), and that they would buy its products (39 percent above sector average). You can look over FutureBrand's 2016 rankings here.Tag: FutureBrand Discuss this article in our forums

Read More...
posted 4 days ago on mac rumors
During the summer of 1976, Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak created and sold 175 Apple-1 computers, marking the launch of what is now one of the most valuable, influential companies in the world. Only 60 or so of those original machines are still in existence, fetching hundreds of thousands of dollars at auction. This Monday, auction site CharityBuzz is set to auction off one of the rarest Apple-1 computers, which could fetch up to a million dollars. Dubbed the "Celebration" Apple-1 by computer historian Corey Cohen, the machine CharityBuzz will sell features a blank "green" PCB board that was never sold to the public and was not part of a known production run. CharityBuzz describes it as an original Apple-1 ACI cassette board, pre-NTI, with Robinson Nugent sockets, a period correct power supply, and an early Apple-1 BASIC cassette labeled and authenticated by original Apple employee Daniel Kottke. It also comes with original Apple-1 manuals, original marketing materials, and Apple-1 and Apple-1 ACI Cassette Board schematics, described as the "most complete documentation set" of all known Apple-1 boards.According to Steve Wozniak, Co-Founder of Apple, "Only a few Apple I's, on blank (not green) PC boards, may have been manually soldered, although I'm not sure of it. We arranged the wave soldering with the company that made the PC boards. But we may not have wanted to wave solder a run (of maybe 10 or more board) until we manually soldered one or two to debug them."The Apple-1 is not in working condition but could be restored to full functionality with minor tweaks, something Cohen recommends against in order to preserve the board's uniqueness. "The Apple-1 board is a not just a piece of history, but a piece of art," he says. CharityBuzz's auction will kick off this Monday, July 25, and will last through August 25. Interested bidders or those who want to follow the auction can check out the auction landing page, which features a countdown to kickoff and full details on the Celebration Apple-1. The Celebration Apple-1 will be on display at the Vintage Computer Festival West, set to take place on August 6 and 7 at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View, California. CharityBuzz believes the Apple-1 could fetch up to $1 million, which would be one of the highest prices an Apple-1 has sold for at auction. Ten percent of proceeds from the auction will be donated to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.Tags: Apple-1, CharityBuzz Discuss this article in our forums

Read More...
posted 5 days ago on mac rumors
During Intel's second quarter earnings call yesterday afternoon, Intel CEO Brian Krzanich told investors and reporters that Intel has begun shipping the first of its 7th Generation Core processors, known as Kaby Lake. Kaby Lake is the third member of the 14-nanometer process, following Broadwell and Skylake. It is the first processor Intel has released since announcing the company will no longer adhere to the "tick-tock" processor release cycle, which saw it alternating between shrinking chip fabrication processes and building new architectures each year. Intel's last two chip releases have been plagued with long delays, and moving away from the tick-tock cycle will allow it to push out new chip updates on a regular basis. Apple's Macs, such as the Retina MacBook Pro and the iMac, have been impacted by Intel's chip delays over the last few years, resulting in long periods of time between updates and unusual update cycles. Kaby Lake is a semi-tock with optimized microarchitecture, offering support for Thunderbolt 3, native USB 3.1, and DisplayPort 1.2. Krzanich did not offer details on which chips have started shipping, but an old Intel roadmap suggests low-power Core M chips and U-series chips with GT2 graphics (likely not suitable for the MacBook Air) will be the first to ship out. Kaby Lake chips appropriate for the Retina MacBook Pro, the machine everyone is most curious about, may not launch until the very end of 2016 or the beginning of 2017 and thus may not be released in time for inclusion in this year's rumored update.Tags: Intel, Kaby Lake Discuss this article in our forums

Read More...
posted 5 days ago on mac rumors
Apple has announced that its first retail store in the New York City borough of Brooklyn opens on Saturday, July 30 at 10:00 a.m. local time. As rumored since late 2014, the store will be located at 247 Bedford Avenue in the Williamsburg neighborhood. The store hours are 10am-8pm on Monday-Saturday and 11am-7pm on Sunday. Apple is nearly finished renovations at 247 Bedford Avenue (Thanks, Matthew!) Apple has been renovating the building, situated at the corner of North 3rd Street, since earlier in 2015, and it posted retail job listings for the store in May. The location will mark Apple's 9th store in New York City alongside six locations in Manhattan, one in Queens, and one on Staten Island.Related Roundup: Apple Stores Tag: New York City Discuss this article in our forums

Read More...
posted 5 days ago on mac rumors
In an in-depth profile about Brian, Kevin, and Michael Sumner, three brothers said to be working on the Apple Car, The Information reports that Apple's rumored 2020 target for launching the much-rumored electric vehicle, codenamed Project Titan, may have slipped to 2021.The group has run into challenges, say people briefed about aspects of Titan along with other reports. Its top executive left in January, a sign that things there weren’t going well. One person who worked briefly with the Titan team was told during their tenure at Apple that the company had been trying to deliver a vehicle by 2020 but the target slipped to 2021.The report refers to the January departure of Apple VP of Product Design Steve Zadesky, who was believed to be leading Apple's electric vehicle development efforts since 2014, as one of multiple challenges that may be pushing back the target date for launching the vehicle. Tesla CEO Elon Musk previously said the so-called Apple Car is unlikely to be ready by 2020, calling it a "missed opportunity." With seemingly another three to five years of research and development ahead, Apple's roadmap could change. Last September, for example, The Wall Street Journal reported that the Apple Car was labeled as a "committed project" with a prospective 2019 shipping date. Tesla, meanwhile, has sold the Model S since 2012 and received some 400,000 pre-orders for its lower-priced Model 3 due in 2017. The bulk of Apple's electric vehicle development is believed to be underway in Sunnyvale, California, a short drive from the company's Cupertino headquarters. Apple has reportedly recruited hundreds of engineers from Tesla, Ford, GM, Samsung, A123 Systems, Nvidia, and elsewhere to work on the project, said to have been approved by Apple CEO Tim Cook in 2014.Related Roundup: Apple Car Tag: theinformation.com Discuss this article in our forums

Read More...
posted 5 days ago on mac rumors
The latest data from market research firm IDC reveals that Apple Watch sales totaled an estimated 1.6 million units in the second quarter, for an industry leading 47 percent market share, compared to Samsung's estimated 600,000 smartwatch sales and 16 percent market share during the March-June period. The numbers suggest that the Apple Watch remains nearly three times as popular as Samsung Gear smartwatches, nearly fifteen months after launching in the U.S. and eight other countries. Nevertheless, Samsung did close the gap with strong 51 percent year-over-year growth and a 9 point rise in market share. Apple, meanwhile, experienced a 55 percent year-over-year decline, but the year-ago quarter encompassed the Apple Watch's launch and is thereby an unfair comparison. Apple Watch market share has dropped substantially, however, from an estimated peak of 72 to 75 percent following its launch quarter.Despite a down quarter, Apple remains far and away the market leader in smartwatches. Apple faces the same challenges as other OEMs, but the pure exposure of the device and brand through tactical marketing gives it a leg up on the competition. Watch 2.0, along with updates to watchOS, could help drive existing user refresh and more importantly, a new wave of first-time buyers.The overall smartwatch market experienced its first-ever decline as shipments fell 32 percent in the second quarter, totaling an estimated 3.5 million units compared to an estimated 5.1 million units in the year-ago quarter. Lenovo, LG, and Garmin rounded off the top five smartwatch vendors in the second quarter, but the trio combined to sell only 700,000 units. All other vendors sold a combined 600,000 units. KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said the so-called Apple Watch 2 will debut in the third quarter, setting the stage for a possible launch alongside the next iPhone in September. The next-generation Apple Watch could feature a FaceTime video camera, expanded Wi-Fi capabilities, cellular connectivity, and other internal upgrades, while new models and bands are always possibilities.Related Roundups: Apple Watch, watchOS 2, watchOS 3 Tags: Samsung, IDC, smartwatch Buyer's Guide: Apple Watch (Caution) Discuss this article in our forums

Read More...
posted 5 days ago on mac rumors
Another video has emerged online showing probable mockups of iPhone 7 units, but this time viewers are given a better idea of what the new handset might look like in three colors that Apple may offer this September. The video was posted to YouTube channel ConceptsiPhone yesterday and shows the iPhone 7 in Rose Gold, Gold, and what the titling calls "Space Black". The mockups depict the now familiar design expectations such as protruding camera, repositioned antenna bands, and no headphone jack, but it's the "Space Black" reference that stands out as a curiosity this time around. Rumors in June pointed to the possibility that Apple was readying a darker variant of its traditional Space Grey color, described by one source as "close to black, though not quite black". This so-called "new, darker shade" was thought to more closely resemble the look of the "space black" stainless steel Apple Watch, which is darker than the "space gray" aluminum Apple Watch Sport. However, earlier this month, alleged photographs of Apple's proposed iPhone 7 colorways stuck to showing the company's typical four variants of Rose Gold, Space Gray, Gold, and Silver, similar to the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus. The "Space Black" variant depicted in the latest video does look darker than a typical iPhone 6s Space Grey unit, but the poor lighting makes identification a guessing game, and it could be just as likely that the unusual naming convention is simply a botched amalgam of previous rumors. On the other hand, Apple has used different shades of "space gray" and "black and slate" across its device lineups over the years. The iPhone 6s and iPad Pro, for example, each have a lighter shade of "space gray" compared to the iPhone 5s and original iPad Air respectively. The iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus are expected to be officially unveiled by Apple in the fall. In addition to the aforementioned features, the smartphones are expected to have faster Apple A10 processors, 32GB of base storage, improved waterproofing, and faster LTE and Wi-Fi.Related Roundup: iPhone 7 Discuss this article in our forums

Read More...
posted 5 days ago on mac rumors
U.S. authorities have arrested the alleged owner of the world's largest torrent site after Apple shared personal details linked to an iTunes transaction that enabled federal investigators to locate their suspect. According to TorrentFreak, Ukranian-born Artem Vaulin was arrested yesterday in Poland on suspicion of running KickassTorrents (KAT), which recently surpassed The Pirate Bay as the go-to site for unofficial copies of movies, TV shows, and music. The U.S. Justice Department has requested 30-year-old Vaulin's extradition on charges of criminal copyright infringement and money laundering. The key piece of evidence that led authorities to Vaulin appeared to come when Apple handed over his personal details after investigators matched an IP address used to log in to the KAT Facebook page with one linked to an iTunes purchase. Filed in a U.S. District Court in Chicago, the criminal complaint reads: "Records provided by Apple showed that [email protected] conducted an iTunes transaction using IP Address 109.86.226.203 on or about July 31, 2015. The same IP Address was used on the same day to login into the KAT Facebook." According to the complaint, KAT operates in 28 languages and offered movies still in cinemas, as well as other content, earning significant revenue from advertising throughout the site. Investigators also reportedly posed as an advertiser to the site, which revealed a bank account associated with it. The U.S. Department of Justice estimates KAT's value to be over $54 million, with annual advertising revenue in the range of $12.5 million to $22.3 million. KAT reportedly helped distribute over $1 billion in pirated files, according to assistant attorney general Leslie Caldwell, who commented on the case. "In an effort to evade law enforcement, Vaulin allegedly relied on servers located in countries around the world and moved his domains due to repeated seizures and civil lawsuits," said Caldwell. "His arrest in Poland, however, demonstrates again that cybercriminals can run, but they cannot hide from justice." In addition to Vaulin's extradition, the criminal complaint has also ordered the seizure of a bank account associated with the site, as well as the seizure of several KAT domain names. TorrentFreak reports that while the main KAT domain appears to be down, various proxies still lead to working versions of the site. Discuss this article in our forums

Read More...
posted 5 days ago on mac rumors
Apple is facing a new class action lawsuit, levied today by customers in California who are unhappy that their iPhones and iPads were replaced with refurbished devices under Apple's AppleCare or AppleCare+ warranty plan. Filed by Vicky Maldonado and Joanne McRight, the lawsuit, first shared by Cult of Mac, accuses Apple of failing to provide replacement devices that are "equivalent to new in performance and reliability" as stated in the company's terms and conditions. Both plaintiffs purchased replacement devices under AppleCare protection plans and were given refurbished devices rather than new devices, which they claim is a violation of the aforementioned line in the AppleCare Terms and Conditions. The Apple Plans purport to provide consumers with Devices that are "equivalent to new in performance and reliability." What that phrase means is 'new' as refurbished devices can never be the equivalent to new in performance and reliability. Plaintiffs allege that it means refurbished. Refurbished is synonymous with the term "reconditioned," that is, a secondhand unit that has been modified to appear to be new for all purposes relevant to this litigation. "New" means a Device that has never been utilized or previously sold and consists of all new parts. The word "refurbished" appears only once in the AppleCare+ terms and conditions even though the printed booklet is 33 pages long.The plaintiffs claim they were deprived of the "use and value" of their original devices when Apple replaced them with refurbished devices, suffering an economic loss in the amount of the cost of the AppleCare plans, the loss of value of their original non-refurbished devices, and the purchase cost and replacement cost paid to Apple. Apple is being accused of breach of contract, breach of warranty, concealing information from the public, deceptive marketing, violating labeling requirements, and unfair competitive practices. The lawsuit covers all customers who purchased an AppleCare or AppleCare+ plan for an iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch after July 11, 2011. The plaintiffs are seeking damages, attorneys fees, an order that would prevent Apple from replacing damaged or defective iOS devices with refurbished devices in the future, updated AppleCare+ terms and conditions, and an option to get a refund for a broken device instead of a repair.Discuss this article in our forums

Read More...
posted 5 days ago on mac rumors
Corning today unveiled its next-generation Gorilla Glass product, Gorilla Glass 5. The new glass, designed to be used in mobile device displays, offers improved protection against breakage from accidental drops. Building on previous generations of Gorilla Glass, Corning's latest product survives 80 percent of the time when dropped face-down from 1.6 meters (5.2 feet) onto a rough surface during lab tests. According to Corning, Gorilla Glass 5 survives drops four times better than competing glass products. "With each successive generation of Corning Gorilla Glass, we have taken cover glass technology to new levels. Gorilla Glass 5 is no exception, extending Corning's advantage in drop performance over competitive glasses," said John Bayne, vice president and general manager, Corning Gorilla Glass. "With many real-world drops occurring from between waist and shoulder height, we knew improving drop performance would be an important and necessary advancement."Corning's Gorilla Glass 5 will begin making its way into products starting later in 2016, and it is a prime candidate for inclusion in either the 2016 iPhone 7 and/or the 2017 iPhone 8. Corning has been a long-time supplier for Apple, with Apple using its Gorilla Glass for its iPad and iPhone lineup. Corning's last Gorilla Glass product, Gorilla Glass 4, came out in 2014.Tags: Corning, Gorilla Glass Discuss this article in our forums

Read More...
posted 5 days ago on mac rumors
One of Apple's latest acquisitions appears to be cloud-based music provider and Omnifone, according to an inside source that shared knowledge of the purchase with MacRumors. Earlier this month, a Music Ally report suggested UK-based Omnifone's tech business and assets had been purchased by a mystery buyer for $10 million, and it seems that buyer is Apple. According to documents covering the sale, Omnifone's alluring patent portfolio was not purchased by Apple, nor were debts or investments, but terms included a "royalty bearing license" that Omnifone says will help it determine the value of its full range of patents. Omnifone has a number of patents relating to downloading music, digital rights management, and generating recommendations that are potentially appealing to streaming music companies. Omnifone operated a cloud platform powering its own MusicStation service and serving as the backbone for music services launched through partnerships with mobile carriers like LG, Samsung, Vodafone, BlackBerry, Sony, and more. Omnifone, for example, powered Samsung's Milk music service in certain locations and it was licensed by PonoMusic to power the PonoMusic Store, which is temporarily unavailable as of today following Apple's purchase of Omnifone. Following its acquisition, Omnifone has abruptly ended all of its partnerships.One of our key infrastructure partners - Omnifone - has recently been acquired by a large company. An impact of this purchase is that all Omnifone's supply relationships are being terminated, effectively immediately. Omnifone has been the exclusive content provider for PonoMusic.Omnifone was placed into administration in May after it became clear the company could no longer pay its debts following the loss of clients like Sony and BlackBerry when Music Unlimited and BBM Music were shuttered. A total of 71 staff members were laid off as it sought a buyer for its technology assets. Apple was believed to be interested in Omnifone's assets early on, with sources in May telling Music Ally Apple would make the purchase.Tags: Apple acquisition, Apple Music, Omnifone Discuss this article in our forums

Read More...
posted 6 days ago on mac rumors
Apple today released the second public beta of macOS Sierra, the newest operating system designed for the Mac. Today's second public beta comes two weeks after the release of the first macOS Sierra public beta and just a few days after the launch of the third developer beta of macOS Sierra. The second public beta and the third developer beta offer the same features. Beta testers who have signed up for Apple's beta testing program will receive the macOS Sierra beta through the Software Update mechanism in the Mac App Store. Those who want to be a part of Apple's beta testing program can sign up to participate through the beta testing website, which gives users access to both iOS and OS X betas. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. macOS Sierra is a significant update that brings Siri to the Mac, allowing users to conduct voice searches to find files, look up information, and more. New Continuity features include an "Auto Unlock" option for unlocking a Mac with an Apple Watch, and a Universal Clipboard for copy paste that works across multiple devices. Deeper iCloud integration makes files stored on the desktop or the Documents folder of a Mac available on all of a user's devices, and Photos features new deep learning algorithms for facial, object, and scene recognition. Messages includes rich links, bigger emoji, and "Tapback" response options, and the macOS Sierra update will bring Apple Pay to the web. For full details on all of the new features included in macOS Sierra, make sure to check out our macOS Sierra roundup.Related Roundup: macOS Sierra Discuss this article in our forums

Read More...
posted 6 days ago on mac rumors
Apple today released the second public beta of iOS 10 to public beta testers, two weeks after releasing the first iOS 10 public beta and just a few days after seeding the third developer beta of iOS 10. Beta testers who have signed up for Apple's beta testing program will receive the iOS 10 beta update over-the-air after installing the proper certificate on their iOS device. Those who want to be a part of Apple's beta testing program can sign up to participate through the beta testing website, which gives users access to both iOS and OS X betas. The video below will walk you through the necessary steps for installing the iOS 10 beta to give the new features a try. Betas are not stable and include many bugs, so they should be installed on a secondary device. The second public beta of iOS 10 and the third developer beta of iOS 10 are likely identical, and in the developer beta, Apple introduced a new keyboard sound, an Accessibility option for using iOS 9-style Touch ID, haptic feedback when locking an iPhone, improved Quick Actions for sharing apps, and more. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. iOS 10 includes a number of new features and design tweaks, like a new Lock screen experience, a revamped Messages app with background animations, bubble effects, Digital Touch, a full App Store and more, and a Photos app with impressive facial and object recognition capabilities. There's a new Home app, and apps like Maps and Apple Music have been redesigned, plus there are hundreds of smaller tweaks and changes in the operating system, which we cover extensively in our iOS 10 roundup. iOS 10 is available to developers and public beta testers at the current time, with a public release planned for the fall.Related Roundup: iOS 10 Discuss this article in our forums

Read More...
posted 6 days ago on mac rumors
Less than two months before Apple is expected to unveil its iPhone 7 lineup, Los Angeles-based luxury accessory maker Brikk has announced that it is now accepting pre-orders for diamond-studded and other customized versions of the smartphones, with prices ranging between $4,295 and $1.3 million. Brikk's mockups for its Lux iPhone 7 appear to be based on leaked photos and schematics of the purported 5.5-inch iPhone 7 with a dual-lens camera system, and it also advertises other rumored iPhone 7 Plus features such as a faster A10 processor, 3GB of RAM, and up to 256GB of flash storage. Brikk describes the Lux iPhone 7 as "the most opulent iPhone the world has ever seen," and offers three different collections: - Standard: 10 different color options with multiple diamond logo choices. Scratch resistant matte or glossy finishes. Prices start at $4,295. - Deluxe: 24 carat yellow gold, 18 carat pink gold, and 950 platinum options with Heptagon-shaped engravings and French enamel accents. - Bespoke: Fully customized designs between the customer and head Brikk designer Cyrus Blacksmith. Up to 60 carats of diamonds. Priced up to $1.3 million. Brikk states that each iPhone is disassembled, hand polished, prepared, and then plated with five layers of various metals and two layers of either 24 carat yellow gold, 18 karat pink gold, or 950 platinum. The iPhone is then reassembled and the precious metals are certified using laser and x-ray testing equipment. The customized iPhone is then packaged in a custom Zero Halliburton case with a carbon fiber and suede leather interior, with the user manual and all standard accessories included in the box. All models come with a diamond-embedded certificate of authenticity and Brikk's sapphire glass screen protector. Deluxe versions include Brikk's customized gold studio headphones, and other Lux-branded accessories will also be available, such as a matching gold and diamond power bank, car charger, world charger, and desktop dock. Each Lux iPhone 7, assembled in Los Angeles, includes a 1-year warranty. Prospective buyers can fill out a form on Brikk's website to receive a Lux iPhone 7 catalog and price guide for pre-ordering. A deposit of an unspecific amount is required for pre-orders. Brikk expects to begin shipments 3-4 weeks after Apple officially releases the iPhone 7, which is expected to be introduced in September. Brikk also offers the Lux iPhone 6s and Lux Watch, a diamond-studded Apple Watch that costs up to $75,000. See real-life photos on Instagram.Tag: Brikk Discuss this article in our forums

Read More...
posted 6 days ago on mac rumors
Apple is continuing on with its "Shot on iPhone" campaign, today uploading two new videos that are designed to showcase the photographic capabilities of the iPhone 6s and the iPhone 6s Plus. Each video, like other videos in the series, is approximately 15 seconds in length and is set to music. The first video features a young woman with her hair flowing in the wind, shot in slow motion to highlight the slo-mo feature that captures video at up to 240 frames per second. The second video features a shot of someone ziplining across Bregenz, Austria while shooting video with an iPhone. Today's "Shot on iPhone" videos follow two wildlife-related videos that were shared by Apple yesterday and come in the midst of a revamp of the Shot on iPhone campaign, which has been recently updated to feature new advertising imagery and billboards in bright colors. Apple has been running its "Shot on iPhone" advertisements since early 2015 following the launch of the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus. It is likely to continue for some time as the upcoming iPhone 7 Plus is rumored to feature a much-improved dual-lens camera while the iPhone 7 is expected to include a larger sensor.Tag: Apple ads Discuss this article in our forums

Read More...
posted 6 days ago on mac rumors
Just after becoming available in France, Apple Pay has also expanded to Hong Kong. Starting today, Visa, MasterCard, and American Express debit and credit cards issued by Hang Seng Bank, Bank of China (Hong Kong), DBS Bank (Hong Kong), HSBC, Standard Chartered, and directly from American Express work with Apple's payment service. According to the Apple Pay Hong Kong website, Apple Pay support will be coming to Hong Kong's Bank of East Asia and Tap & Go in the near future. Cards can be added to Apple Pay by tapping the "Add Credit or Debit Card" option in the Wallet app on devices running iOS 8.1 or later. Apple Pay works with the iPhone 6, iPhone 6s, iPhone 6 Plus, iPhone 6s Plus, and iPhone SE, and it is available on the iPhone 5, 5c, and 5s when paired with an Apple Watch. Apple Pay in apps is also available on iPads with Touch ID, including the iPad Air 2, iPad mini 3, iPad mini 4, and both iPad Pro models. Apple Pay in Hong Kong can be used anywhere contactless payments are accepted and at a wide range of retail partners, including 7-Eleven, KFC, McDonald's, Pizza Hut, Pacific Coffee, Su-Pa-De-Pa, Taste, ThreeSixty, Uny, and more. Apple Pay is now available in the United States, the UK, China, Australia, Canada, Switzerland, Singapore, France, and Hong Kong. Later in 2016, Apple plans to expand Apple Pay to Spain through a partnership with American Express.Related Roundup: Apple Pay Discuss this article in our forums

Read More...