posted about 1 month ago on mac rumors
The upcoming February 25 episode of ABC's multiple Emmy-winning sitcom "Modern Family" will take place solely on a MacBook screen (via The Verge). The episode, being shot by director and series co-creator Steve Levitan, used an iPhone 6 and iPad Air 2 to shoot every scene. The episode's story focuses on Claire Dunphy's (Julie Bowen) attempt to reach her daughter Haley (Sarah Hyland) by contacting various other members of the Dunphy/Pritchett clan via multiple forms of MacBook apps, all while stuck in an airport. The show will not only use various chat apps like Apple's own FaceTime and Messages, but include references to everything from Reminders to the now-obsolete iPhoto. Levitan mentioned that the idea for the episode came from his own experience communicating with his kids in college through the vast array of chat software available today."I have two daughters at college, and we do a lot of FaceTiming," he said at a recent press event in Los Angeles. He was working one day with a number of emails and websites open on his machine, when a video chat from his daughter popped up. On the screen he saw his work, his daughter, himself, and his wife doing something behind him all at the same time. "And I realized on that screen you could tell so much about my life. So the original idea was from there."The show has been a proponent of Apple-related gadgets in the past, with an early-series episode mostly dedicated to Claire's attempt to get Phil the original iPad. Apple was even reported to lend the show a slew of iPhones, iPads, and MacBook Pros for shooting the video chats and for allowing the show's editors to conduct post-production work once the shoot was done. The episode has been so long in production - with motion graphics artist John Brown at the head - the team had been working on it since OS X Yosemite itself was in beta. "It was frustrating to be like, 'Act one, totally locked,' and then come in Monday and hear the FaceTime notification has changed," Brown said. Besides a few slight liberties to the Apple OS X platform, including giving FaceTime the ability to handle multiple calls at once and a few aesthetic alterations to Yosemite's transparency options, The Verge reports the environment created by the episode "felt all too familiar." The episode, entitled "Connection Lost" airs Wednesday, February 25 on ABC. Recent Mac and iOS Blog Stories • Apple's Efforts at Bringing Apple Pay to China Hitting Roadblocks • Popular Media Player App 'VLC' Slowly Returning to the App Store • From the Forums: Apple Watch Size Comparison • White House Announces Apple Pay Support for Federal Payment Cards • How to Enable Two-Step Verification for Apple ID • Candy Crush Saga Players Spent Over $1.3 Billion on In-App Purchases in 2014 • Fleksy Keyboard Adds New Themes, Extensions, and Valentine's Day Content • Apple Reverses Course, Allows Marijuana Apps in Marijuana-Legal States [Updated]

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posted about 1 month ago on mac rumors
Microsoft today released an update for its suite of Office apps on Apple's iPhone and iPad App Store for users running iOS 8. The 1.6 updates bring, along with the usual bug fixes and performance enhancements, full support for saving and syncing documents via Apple's iCloud Drive service (via The Verge). Microsoft says users of its most popular software like Word, Excel, and PowerPoint can now open, edit, and save their work to iCloud as a storage option in the "Places" section of each iOS app. The additional storage method doesn't require users to have an Office 365 subscription and comes as an alternative to Microsoft's own cloud storage option, OneDrive. As pointed out by The Verge, light restrictions on a few file types may hinder iCloud's usage on Microsoft's iOS apps, however.There’s also restrictions on filetypes, so while you can see a thumbnail preview of text in a document created with TextEdit on a Mac (stored on iCloud), you can’t access the document or edit it. Overall, it’s a fairly basic feature addition, but one that will please (and possibly frustrate) those who use iCloud on a regular basis.Microsoft most recently added a similar feature to flesh out its iOS offerings with a partnership with Dropbox that let users open, edit, and save their documents using the popular document-saving cloud app. The Word, Excel, and PowerPoint apps launched on the iPhone in early November, bringing free document creation and basic editing to the service. Microsoft Word [Direct Link], Microsoft Excel [Direct Link], and Microsoft PowerPoint [Direct Link] can all be downloaded from the App Store for free. Recent Mac and iOS Blog Stories • Apple's Efforts at Bringing Apple Pay to China Hitting Roadblocks • Popular Media Player App 'VLC' Slowly Returning to the App Store • From the Forums: Apple Watch Size Comparison • White House Announces Apple Pay Support for Federal Payment Cards • How to Enable Two-Step Verification for Apple ID • Candy Crush Saga Players Spent Over $1.3 Billion on In-App Purchases in 2014 • Fleksy Keyboard Adds New Themes, Extensions, and Valentine's Day Content • Apple Reverses Course, Allows Marijuana Apps in Marijuana-Legal States [Updated]

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posted about 1 month ago on mac rumors
Before Apple unveiled the Apple Watch last September, reports indicated the device would come with 10 sensors to track health and fitness data, leading some healthcare professions to find the unveiled Apple Watch's health features disappointing. In a new report, the Wall Street Journal offers a look at the original Apple Watch health features that were dropped due to consistency problems. Apple began developing the watch about four years ago, with a focus on health and fitness. It’s not unusual for Apple to experiment with many technologies or shift focus during product development, but the watch was especially challenging, people familiar with the matter said. Internally, the project became known as a “black hole” sucking in resources, one of these people said.The Apple Watch originally featured censors that measured the conductivity of skin, allowing the device to detect stress levels and heart-rate monitoring similar to an electrocardiogram, also known as an EKG. Apple also experimented with ways to detect blood pressure or how much oxygen is in a user's blood. However, a mix of consistency problems and potential oversight caused Apple to switch the focus of the device from health-related to a more general do-everything product. The skin conductivity features didn't perform well with people who had hairy arms or dry skin, while results varied depending on how tight an Apple Watch was worn on users' wrists. Additionally, if Apple decided to use the health date to provide "health or behavioral advice", the Cupertino company would have to seek approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and other regulators. While these features were dropped for the first version of the Apple Watch, sources tell WSJ that they could appear in future versions of the device, echoing a Reuters report from September. Last week, Apple CEO Tim Cook said that the company's objective with Apple Watch is to "change the way people live their lives" and that people would be surprised by the breadth of what the device can do, which includes activity monitoring, reminding users to stand up after a certain time period and non-verbal communication with friends. Apple is currently asking developers to have their Apple Watch apps ready by mid-February, with some developers traveling to Apple's Cupertino headquarters for help. Cook has confirmed the Apple Watch will launch in April. The Wall Street Journal reports that Apple will make five to six million units for the first quarter, with half of those units being the entry Apple Watch Sport and one-third being the mid-tier stainless-steel Apple Watch. Recent Mac and iOS Blog Stories • Popular Media Player App 'VLC' Slowly Returning to the App Store • From the Forums: Apple Watch Size Comparison • White House Announces Apple Pay Support for Federal Payment Cards • How to Enable Two-Step Verification for Apple ID • Candy Crush Saga Players Spent Over $1.3 Billion on In-App Purchases in 2014 • Fleksy Keyboard Adds New Themes, Extensions, and Valentine's Day Content • Apple Reverses Course, Allows Marijuana Apps in Marijuana-Legal States [Updated] • Seagate Seven Review: Hands-On With a 7mm Thick Portable Hard Drive

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posted about 1 month ago on mac rumors
Apple has invited third-party developers to its headquarters in Cupertino, California to allow them to test and finalize apps for the Apple Watch, according to 9to5Mac. The report claims that developers have been arriving at One Infinite Loop this month to work with Apple engineers on finishing WatchKit-based apps in categories such as sports, productivity and finance."The developers invited by Apple to Cupertino range from those behind titles for sports applications and productivity software. Apple has also been meeting with banks to work on WatchKit applications that assist with the Apple Watch’s Apple Pay functionality. Besides U.S.-based banks, Apple has been working on WatchKit apps with developers from Germany-based banks, which indicates Apple is likely in talks with more foreign banks to expand Apple Pay to more countries across the world."MacRumors reported a few weeks ago that some developers have been asked to have Apple Watch apps readied by this month, although this report claims that Apple seems to be operating on a more urgent timeline, possibly in order to ensure that some apps are finalized for an upcoming marketing initiative or media event. In the meantime, Apple has reportedly been holding workshops to train retail employees about the Apple Watch in Los Angeles, Cupertino, Austin and Atlanta. Apple CEO Tim Cook confirmed the Apple Watch will launch in April. Recent Mac and iOS Blog Stories • Popular Media Player App 'VLC' Slowly Returning to the App Store • From the Forums: Apple Watch Size Comparison • White House Announces Apple Pay Support for Federal Payment Cards • How to Enable Two-Step Verification for Apple ID • Candy Crush Saga Players Spent Over $1.3 Billion on In-App Purchases in 2014 • Fleksy Keyboard Adds New Themes, Extensions, and Valentine's Day Content • Apple Reverses Course, Allows Marijuana Apps in Marijuana-Legal States [Updated] • Seagate Seven Review: Hands-On With a 7mm Thick Portable Hard Drive

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posted about 1 month ago on mac rumors
Google's security team Project Zero recently announced some changes to its bug disclosure policy after controversially exposing Apple and Microsoft security flaws when the companies failed to meet the 90-day deadline. The new disclosure deadline has a 14-day grace period and excludes weekends and public holidays, providing tech companies with more time to properly address security vulnerabilities in their software."We now have a 14-day grace period. If a 90-day deadline will expire but a vendor lets us know before the deadline that a patch is scheduled for release on a specific day within 14 days following the deadline, the public disclosure will be delayed until the availability of the patch."Project Zero is a security team consisting of experienced programmers that look through the code of Google and several of its competitors to discover security flaws, like those uncovered in OS X Yosemite back in January. The team immediately discloses any vulnerabilities found to vendors, providing them with a 90-day deadline to release a software patch before sharing the vulnerabilities with the public. The role of Google playing security watchdog for other companies has been the subject of much debate, with some believing that the company has a disingenuous agenda and others claiming that it is taking appropriate action. Google claims that it holds itself to the same 90-day policy it enforces on other tech companies, with bugs in the pipeline for Chrome and Android that are subject to the same deadline policy. Recent Mac and iOS Blog Stories • Popular Media Player App 'VLC' Slowly Returning to the App Store • From the Forums: Apple Watch Size Comparison • White House Announces Apple Pay Support for Federal Payment Cards • How to Enable Two-Step Verification for Apple ID • Candy Crush Saga Players Spent Over $1.3 Billion on In-App Purchases in 2014 • Fleksy Keyboard Adds New Themes, Extensions, and Valentine's Day Content • Apple Reverses Course, Allows Marijuana Apps in Marijuana-Legal States [Updated] • Seagate Seven Review: Hands-On With a 7mm Thick Portable Hard Drive

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posted about 1 month ago on mac rumors
LG Electronics today announced a new device in the line of Android Wear smartwatch products, called the LG Watch Urbane. Planned for a full unveiling at Mobile World Congress next month, the watch is said to combine the traditional aspects of a luxury timepiece with the "high-tech flare" of a modern smartwatch. The LG Watch Urbane follows in the footsteps of LG's previous foray into the world of smartwatches with the LG G Watch R, launched last October. LG says while the G Watch R was designed with a more active lifestyle in mind, the Watch Urbane has taken a more formal, classic route that will suit both men and women. Despite the formal look, the Watch Urbane is powered by a smartwatch-style touch-based interface that is compatible with any smartphone running Android 4.3 or above. “The LG Watch Urbane’s classic design and smart features make it the perfect smartwatch to complement our G Watch and G Watch R, which were designed as more casual and active devices,” said Juno Cho, president and CEO of LG Electronics Mobile Communications Company. “LG Watch Urbane is an important part of our strategy to develop wearable devices that are worn and viewed as everyday accessories, not electronic gadgets.” The LG Watch Urbane includes the same 1.3-inch full circle P-OLED display as the LG G Watch R - which was the first smarwatch to include such a display - but features a narrower bezel this time around, offering it that more formal, sleeker look touted by LG. The watch comes in gold and silver options with a natural leather strap that can be replaced by any 22mm wide band, according to the company. Not many specific details were given on the device's smartwatch capabilities, but LG confirmed the LG Watch Urbane will be able to measure a user's heart rate for fitness purposes thanks to a photoplethysmography (PPG) sensor built into the device. Other key factors, like pricing and whether the new Android-based smartwatch will hit around the Spring launch of the Apple Watch, was not yet disclosed by LG. Key Specifications: - Chipset: 1.2GHz Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ 400 - Operating System: Android Wear™ - Display: 1.3-inch P-OLED Display (320 x 320, 245ppi) - Size: 45.5 x 52.2 x 10.9mm - Memory: 4GB eMMC/ 512MB LPDDR2 - Battery: 410mAh - Sensors: 9-Axis (Gyro / Accelerometer / Compass) / Barometer / PPG (Heart Rate Sensor) - Colors: Gold / Silver - Other: Dust and Water Resistant (IP67) LG's newest foray into the increasingly crowded world of smartwatches is the latest in a long line of companies announcing new iterations of older products, or new products altogether, preparing to do battle with Apple's April launch of the Apple Watch. Recent Mac and iOS Blog Stories • Popular Media Player App 'VLC' Slowly Returning to the App Store • From the Forums: Apple Watch Size Comparison • White House Announces Apple Pay Support for Federal Payment Cards • How to Enable Two-Step Verification for Apple ID • Candy Crush Saga Players Spent Over $1.3 Billion on In-App Purchases in 2014 • Fleksy Keyboard Adds New Themes, Extensions, and Valentine's Day Content • Apple Reverses Course, Allows Marijuana Apps in Marijuana-Legal States [Updated] • Seagate Seven Review: Hands-On With a 7mm Thick Portable Hard Drive

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posted about 1 month ago on mac rumors
Apple design chief Jonathan Ive has been interviewed in an exhaustive profile with The New Yorker, in which he discusses a number of topics ranging from Steve Jobs to the Apple Watch. The interview provides a rare glimpse inside Apple's design studio at Two Infinite Loop at its Cupertino headquarters, as Ive shares some of his experiences working at Apple over the past few decades. The iconic designer recounts how Jobs visited Apple's design studio upon returning to Apple in 1997 and quickly bonded with Ive, solidifying a longtime friendship between the two."During the visit, Ive said, Jobs 'became more and more confident, and got really excited about our ability to work together.' That day, according to Ive, they started collaborating on what became the iMac. Soon afterward, Apple launched its 'Think Different' campaign, and Ive took it as a reminder of the importance of “not being apologetic, not defining a way of being in response to what Dell just did.” He went on, 'My intuition’s good, but my ability to articulate what I feel was not very good—and remains not very good, frustratingly. And that’s what’s hard, with Steve not being here now.'"Ive also claimed that the Apple Watch was conceived soon before the passing of Jobs, who died in October 2011 following a lengthy battle with a rare form of pancreatic cancer. Apple CEO Tim Cook added that Apple was looking at multiple categories of products at the time and thinking about which ones to do."The Apple Watch—the first Apple device with a design history older than its founder, or its designer—was conceived 'close to Steve’s death,' Ive said. It’s hard to build a time line of this or any other Apple creation: the company treats the past, as well as the future, as its intellectual property. But, in 2011, there may have been a greater appetite than usual for investigations of new products. One could imagine that executives were eager to act, in anticipation of grief, market upheaval, and skeptical press."Ive went on to discuss how he believes that, while millions of people may be willing to use an iPhone that looks the same as others, the same mindset does not carry over to a wrist-worn device like the Apple Watch. Ive recognized a need for the Apple Watch to be highly customizable, with different sizes, watch bands and different alloys of aluminum, stainless steel and gold.Ive’s position was that people were “O.K., or O.K. to a degree,” with carrying a phone that is identical to hundreds of millions of others, but they would not accept this in something that’s worn. The question, then, was “How do we create a huge range of products and still have a clear and singular opinion?” […] If variety was a perceived necessity, it was also an opportunity. “We could make aluminum, and stainless steel, and gold, and different alloys of gold,” Ive said. The full-length interview goes into further detail about Ive's design philosophies that went into creating the Apple Watch, alongside some interesting anecdotes and excerpts from other Apple executives such as Tim Cook, Bob Mansfield and Jeff Williams. Recent Mac and iOS Blog Stories • From the Forums: Apple Watch Size Comparison • White House Announces Apple Pay Support for Federal Payment Cards • How to Enable Two-Step Verification for Apple ID • Candy Crush Saga Players Spent Over $1.3 Billion on In-App Purchases in 2014 • Fleksy Keyboard Adds New Themes, Extensions, and Valentine's Day Content • Apple Reverses Course, Allows Marijuana Apps in Marijuana-Legal States [Updated] • Seagate Seven Review: Hands-On With a 7mm Thick Portable Hard Drive • Apple Introduces TestFlight Groups for Organizing Beta Testers

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posted about 1 month ago on mac rumors
A largely unmarked van with rooftop cameras, similar to the one originally spotted roaming Bay Area streets earlier this month, has been captured on video in Palo Alto, California. MacRumors obtained the footage from reader Jonathan Shiu, who recently recorded the van driving past Juana Briones Park on Clemo Avenue, a residential side street located approximately 10 miles from Apple's headquarters in Cupertino. It has been increasingly speculated that these fifth-generation Dodge Caravans, which are reportedly leased to Apple, are part of the company's work on an electric car, but it is also possible that the vans are being used for a project similar to Google's Street View. It is conceivable that the rooftop cameras are being used to either collect mapping data for Apple Maps or as sensors to assist with self-driving initiatives. Earlier this week, the Financial Times reported that Apple is hiring automotive experts to work in a top-secret research lab located near the company's headquarters. The Wall Street Journal soon followed up with a report claiming that Apple has hundreds of employees working on developing an electric vehicle, and Reuters added that the project will involve self-driving cars. Apple is likely in the early stages of research and development for any electric car project, and it is fully possible that the iPhone maker scraps the initiative before it ever reaches the public. With both Google and Tesla already invested in electric and self-driving vehicles, it will be interesting to see if Apple enters the industry or remains on the sidelines in the months and years ahead. Recent Mac and iOS Blog Stories • From the Forums: Apple Watch Size Comparison • White House Announces Apple Pay Support for Federal Payment Cards • How to Enable Two-Step Verification for Apple ID • Candy Crush Saga Players Spent Over $1.3 Billion on In-App Purchases in 2014 • Fleksy Keyboard Adds New Themes, Extensions, and Valentine's Day Content • Apple Reverses Course, Allows Marijuana Apps in Marijuana-Legal States [Updated] • Seagate Seven Review: Hands-On With a 7mm Thick Portable Hard Drive • Apple Introduces TestFlight Groups for Organizing Beta Testers

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posted about 1 month ago on mac rumors
French website Nowhereelse.fr has shared new photos for another possible third-party case for the so-called "iPad Pro" tablet. The black protective cover has cutouts for a Lightning connector, rear-facing camera and microphone, volume rocker, mute switch and power button, consistent with previous iPad Air and iPad mini designs. The case does not have a cutout on the left side like the purported iPad Pro case that surfaced last month, nor does it have speaker cutouts due to having a different design that leaves the top and bottom edges exposed. This second third-party case appears to originate from a Chinese accessory maker that also makes cases for the iPad Air 2, providing yet another side-by-side comparison of how much larger the iPad Pro could be alongside current iPad models. The veracity of the source is questionable, but this case is largely consistent with past leaks. The photos lack an object for size reference, but the case does appear to be large enough to house the iPad Pro, which has been rumored to feature a 12.2-inch to 12.9-inch screen. A lack of physical hardware and component leaks for the oft-rumored iPad Pro has resulted in these third-party cases providing the clearest hints about the sizing, features, and design of the 12-inch tablet. The iPad Pro is rumored to feature a triple-core A8X or A9 processor, 2GB of RAM and Touch ID, and may ship with an optional stylus. Multiple reports claim that Apple will begin to mass produce the iPad Pro, also referred to as the "iPad Air Plus," in the first half of 2015. Another report claims that the tablet could launch between April and June. Recent Mac and iOS Blog Stories • From the Forums: Apple Watch Size Comparison • White House Announces Apple Pay Support for Federal Payment Cards • How to Enable Two-Step Verification for Apple ID • Candy Crush Saga Players Spent Over $1.3 Billion on In-App Purchases in 2014 • Fleksy Keyboard Adds New Themes, Extensions, and Valentine's Day Content • Apple Reverses Course, Allows Marijuana Apps in Marijuana-Legal States [Updated] • Seagate Seven Review: Hands-On With a 7mm Thick Portable Hard Drive • Apple Introduces TestFlight Groups for Organizing Beta Testers

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posted about 1 month ago on mac rumors
Noted DJ Zane Lowe, who has headed up BBC Radio 1's popular evening new music show for over a decade, is leaving the broadcaster next month to join Apple, reports BBC News. Lowe has won a number of awards for his radio show and other work over the years, and was nominated for a Grammy Award this year for his role in writing and producing Sam Smith's album "In The Lonely Hour." Zane said: "I want to thank everyone at Radio 1 for their support and friendship. "The station has allowed me to share incredible music with the country's best music fans." During his time on the station, the New Zealand-born DJ has become well known for championing emerging talent and many acts have made their breakthrough after having one of their tracks named as "hottest record in the world" on Zane's show.While Lowe has apparently not publicly stated what role he will take on at Apple, The Guardian says it will involve the company's iTunes Radio streaming music service. Lowe's role will likely include more than iTunes Radio at some point, however, with Apple currently working toward a revamp of the Beats Music subscription streaming service it acquired last year. Part of the plan reportedly involves folding Beats into the iTunes brand and integrating it with OS X and iOS. As a result, there may be some changes in store for iTunes Radio, which has reportedly seen a lukewarm reception and has only expanded to Australia since its U.S. launch in late 2013, despite rumors of a number of other countries receiving access by early 2014. Recent Mac and iOS Blog Stories • From the Forums: Apple Watch Size Comparison • White House Announces Apple Pay Support for Federal Payment Cards • How to Enable Two-Step Verification for Apple ID • Candy Crush Saga Players Spent Over $1.3 Billion on In-App Purchases in 2014 • Fleksy Keyboard Adds New Themes, Extensions, and Valentine's Day Content • Apple Reverses Course, Allows Marijuana Apps in Marijuana-Legal States [Updated] • Seagate Seven Review: Hands-On With a 7mm Thick Portable Hard Drive • Apple Introduces TestFlight Groups for Organizing Beta Testers

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posted about 1 month ago on mac rumors
Following up on yesterday's series of reports about a "top-secret research team" at Apple working on an electric car, Reuters now weighs in with its own source claiming the project involves a self-driving electric car.Technology giant Apple is learning how to make a self-driving electric car and is talking to experts at carmakers and automotive suppliers, an automotive source familiar with the talks said on Saturday. The Cupertino, California-based maker of phones, computers and watches is exploring how to make an entire vehicle, not just designing automotive software or individual components, the source said. "They don't appear to want a lot of help from carmakers," the source, who declined to be named, said.The source's of claim of self-driving capabilities for the vehicle directly contradicts yesterday's Wall Street Journal report, which specifically stated a self-driving car was not part of the effort. Reuters' source is from the automotive industry rather than at Apple directly, so it is unclear how complete the source's information is. Apple would not be the only major technology company working on self-driving cars, as Google has been working on such a project for a number of years and has made significant progress in the area. Major car manufacturers are also working hard on technology that would make their cars at least somewhat autonomous. Google's prototype self-driving car Yesterday's report from The Wall Street Journal provided a fair bit of detail on Apple's efforts, noting that Tim Cook approved the project last year. Former Ford engineer and longtime Apple design vice president Steve Zadesky given permission to build a team of up to 1,000 employees largely from within the company to work on the project at a Silicon Valley location separate from Apple's main campus. Recent Mac and iOS Blog Stories • White House Announces Apple Pay Support for Federal Payment Cards • How to Enable Two-Step Verification for Apple ID • Candy Crush Saga Players Spent Over $1.3 Billion on In-App Purchases in 2014 • Fleksy Keyboard Adds New Themes, Extensions, and Valentine's Day Content • Apple Reverses Course, Allows Marijuana Apps in Marijuana-Legal States [Updated] • Seagate Seven Review: Hands-On With a 7mm Thick Portable Hard Drive • Apple Introduces TestFlight Groups for Organizing Beta Testers • Buyer's Guide Valentine's Day Edition: Discounts on iPad, iPhone, Apple Accessories, and More

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posted about 1 month ago on mac rumors
Following up on today's report suggesting that Apple is recruiting automotive technology and vehicle design experts to work in a secret research lab, The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Apple is developing an electric vehicle. According to the publication's sources, Apple has hundreds of employees working to design an Apple-branded minivan-like electric vehicle under the code name Project Titan. The large size of the team indicates that the company is serious about the project, but it's possible that Apple may not go through with plans to create a car despite its current research efforts. Apple may decide not to proceed with a car. In addition, many technologies used in an electric car, such as advanced batteries and in-car electronics, would be useful to other Apple products, including the iPhone and iPad. Apple often investigates technologies and potential products, going as far as building multiple prototypes for some things that it won't ever sell. Any product would take several years to complete and obtain safety certifications. Apple executives have reportedly flown to Austria to meet with contract manufacturers of high-end cars, like Magna Steyr. Rumors that Apple is working on a vehicle first started circulating last week after mysterious vans equipped with cameras and leased to Apple were spotted on Bay Area streets. Speculation led some to believe the cars were for a possible mapping project, while others postulated that they were self driving vehicles. It's not known if the vans are related to Apple's rumored electric car project, but they roused enough interest to lead to its discovery. Earlier this week, an Apple employee who saw the car rumors told Business Insider that Tesla employees had been leaving the car company to work on an Apple project that was "too exciting to pass up" and that would "give Tesla a run for its money." That rumor led Financial Times to discover Apple's efforts to recruit vehicle experts, such as former Mercedes-Benz R&D President and CEO Johann Jungwirth, who joined Apple back in September, which in turn led to the uncovering of the full scope of "Project Titan" at Apple. Recent Mac and iOS Blog Stories • White House Announces Apple Pay Support for Federal Payment Cards • How to Enable Two-Step Verification for Apple ID • Candy Crush Saga Players Spent Over $1.3 Billion on In-App Purchases in 2014 • Fleksy Keyboard Adds New Themes, Extensions, and Valentine's Day Content • Apple Reverses Course, Allows Marijuana Apps in Marijuana-Legal States [Updated] • Seagate Seven Review: Hands-On With a 7mm Thick Portable Hard Drive • Apple Introduces TestFlight Groups for Organizing Beta Testers • Buyer's Guide Valentine's Day Edition: Discounts on iPad, iPhone, Apple Accessories, and More

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posted about 1 month ago on mac rumors
Apple CEO Tim Cook says Apple's goal with the Apple Watch is to "change the way you life your life," and that everyone is going to find a feature they can't live without in the device. He also recently shared news that the Apple Watch will be released in April. Check out our roundup to find out more. Recent Mac and iOS Blog Stories • How to Enable Two-Step Verification for Apple ID • Candy Crush Saga Players Spent Over $1.3 Billion on In-App Purchases in 2014 • Fleksy Keyboard Adds New Themes, Extensions, and Valentine's Day Content • Apple Reverses Course, Allows Marijuana Apps in Marijuana-Legal States [Updated] • Seagate Seven Review: Hands-On With a 7mm Thick Portable Hard Drive • Apple Introduces TestFlight Groups for Organizing Beta Testers • Buyer's Guide Valentine's Day Edition: Discounts on iPad, iPhone, Apple Accessories, and More • NBC Launches Extensive 'SNL' App Ahead of 40th Anniversary Special

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posted about 1 month ago on mac rumors
Apple is recruiting automotive technology and vehicle design experts to work in a new "top-secret research lab," according to Financial Times. The report adds that a number of Apple designers working under design chief Jonathan Ive have also been regularly meeting with automotive executives and creators in recent months, and even trying to hire them in some cases. A team of Apple employees, led by experienced managers from Apple's iPhone unit, are said to be researching automotive products at a secretive location outside of the Cupertino-based company's One Infinite Loop headquarters. The new research lab was allegedly set up late last year, shortly after the unveiling of the iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus and Apple Watch. Financial Times claims that Apple may be developing an advanced software platform that builds upon the CarPlay dashboard system, although the background of the individuals that the iPhone maker is hiring suggests that the company may also be in the early stages of working on a car to compete with the likes of Tesla and Google.But people familiar with the company said that the background of the people Apple is hiring — including automotive designers and vehicle dynamics engineers — and the seniority of the executives involved suggest a car could be in the works. “Three months ago I would have said it was CarPlay,” said one person who has worked closely with Apple for many years, referring to Apple’s infotainment system. “Today I think it’s a car.”An increasing amount of speculation has surfaced in recent months about Apple working on a car after a mysterious van leased to the company was spotted in California and a subsequent report that Apple is working on a project that "will give Tesla a run for its money." Recent Mac and iOS Blog Stories • How to Enable Two-Step Verification for Apple ID • Candy Crush Saga Players Spent Over $1.3 Billion on In-App Purchases in 2014 • Fleksy Keyboard Adds New Themes, Extensions, and Valentine's Day Content • Apple Reverses Course, Allows Marijuana Apps in Marijuana-Legal States [Updated] • Seagate Seven Review: Hands-On With a 7mm Thick Portable Hard Drive • Apple Introduces TestFlight Groups for Organizing Beta Testers • Buyer's Guide Valentine's Day Edition: Discounts on iPad, iPhone, Apple Accessories, and More • NBC Launches Extensive 'SNL' App Ahead of 40th Anniversary Special

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posted about 1 month ago on mac rumors
Apple CEO Tim Cook is at the White House Summit on Cybersecurity and Consumer Protection which is occurring now, and he is expected to speak for approximately 10 minutes beginning at 11 a.m. Pacific Time, ahead of a presidential address set to take place at 11:15. The summit is being streamed live on YouTube and can be watched below. The White House is expected to unveil its next executive action on cybersecurity at today's summit. The event includes tech executives, academics, government officials, with several panels on topics like payment security, and improving cybersecurity practices at consumer oriented businesses. Cook, who is one of the few top executives at the summit, is expected to speak on the importance of user privacy. Cook has been a major voice calling for government surveillance reform, asking for limitations on government authority to collect users' information and transparency about data demands. MacRumors will update this post with highlights on what Cook has to say. Note: Due to the political nature of the discussion regarding this topic, the discussion thread is located in our Politics, Religion, Social Issues forum. All forum members and site visitors are welcome to read and follow the thread, but posting is limited to forum members with at least 100 posts. Recent Mac and iOS Blog Stories • How to Enable Two-Step Verification for Apple ID • Candy Crush Saga Players Spent Over $1.3 Billion on In-App Purchases in 2014 • Fleksy Keyboard Adds New Themes, Extensions, and Valentine's Day Content • Apple Reverses Course, Allows Marijuana Apps in Marijuana-Legal States [Updated] • Seagate Seven Review: Hands-On With a 7mm Thick Portable Hard Drive • Apple Introduces TestFlight Groups for Organizing Beta Testers • Buyer's Guide Valentine's Day Edition: Discounts on iPad, iPhone, Apple Accessories, and More • NBC Launches Extensive 'SNL' App Ahead of 40th Anniversary Special

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posted about 1 month ago on mac rumors
While the Grammy Awards happened last weekend, information on a few Apple-related conversations happening at and around Clive Davis' pre-Grammy party are just now beginning to emerge, reports Billboard. Representing Apple at the gala were Tim Cook, Eddy Cue, Jimmy Iovine and iTunes VP Robert Kondrk, with the Apple executives chatting with a number of music industry representatives during the event. The party came as Iovine has reportedly been meeting with senior executives from many record labels in recent weeks, and while Billboard reports "a nondisclosure agreement preceded every sit-down," details on some of the discussions are beginning to trickle out. One of the main takeaways appears to be a targeted spring/summer launch window for the revamped Beats Music streaming service the company is said to be integrating with iOS and OS X. Left to right: Al Gore, Eddy Cue, Tim Cook, Jimmy Iovine, Nancy Pelosi at Clive Davis' pre-Grammy party (Photo via Mashable) An insider speaking to Billboard claims the Cupertino-based company isn't content just to be in the music business but "to be the music business; it's not to compete with Spotify." Billboard points out that, with new iOS updates in development possibly bringing Beats Music support and the booming popularity of streaming services, the company appears to already be lining up to deal with its digital music problems head-on. The proof is in the 800 million credit cards it already has on file -- comparably, Spotify has 15 million subscriptions and 60 million monthly users, although the service is growing, headed to an initial public offering. In fact, integration has begun. Apple TV features a Beats logo, an update to Apple's iOS will include streaming and creative is in the works for new ads starring artists recruited by Iovine. But that may be the extent of Beats' involvement as Kondrk takes the lead on music. Like the Apple-centric design of its offices, the look and feel of Beats is likely to mirror Apple's aesthetic, not the other way around. Other news out of the talks points to a bit of housecleaning in dealing with iTunes itself, with Apple supposedly planning to rid the store of many covers, soundalikes, and re-recordings. Billboard also reports that the featured ticker seen on the iTunes storefront may lose its editorial-chosen feature and become more sales-based.Additionally, featured-artist sliders, previously chosen editorially, may now be determined by sales velocity, leaving some to wonder if iTunes is becoming less like a Tower Records and more of a Target -- limited selection and a focus on hit titles. "Until now, iTunes has been good to the indies," contends one vet. Conversely, an Apple source says such case-by-case house-cleaning to eliminate duplicative and deceptive versions is routine.Despite Apple's challenges in a market where third-party music services can operate fairly freely on Apple's platforms, insiders remain optimistic about Apple's plans, with Davis' son Doug pointing out the company's already hugely popular ecosystem of devices and operating systems helping to launch the new service with a bang. "Their streaming service will see a seamless integration that's cross-platform and convenient, as Spotify has become," Davis said. "As a fan of all-you-can-eat, the industry in general is excited to have more market players." Recent Mac and iOS Blog Stories • How to Enable Two-Step Verification for Apple ID • Candy Crush Saga Players Spent Over $1.3 Billion on In-App Purchases in 2014 • Fleksy Keyboard Adds New Themes, Extensions, and Valentine's Day Content • Apple Reverses Course, Allows Marijuana Apps in Marijuana-Legal States [Updated] • Seagate Seven Review: Hands-On With a 7mm Thick Portable Hard Drive • Apple Introduces TestFlight Groups for Organizing Beta Testers • Buyer's Guide Valentine's Day Edition: Discounts on iPad, iPhone, Apple Accessories, and More • NBC Launches Extensive 'SNL' App Ahead of 40th Anniversary Special

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posted about 1 month ago on mac rumors
Apple on Thursday made Pages, Numbers and Keynote accessible to users without an Apple device through iCloud Beta. Starting last night, anyone can sign up for an Apple ID to access the trio of iWork for iCloud beta apps for free. Each account comes with 1GB of complimentary iCloud storage for use with the productivity software. While the offer is currently limited to the iCloud Beta website, it is likely that Apple will rollout the feature to the regular version in the future. To create a free Apple ID account, navigate to iCloud Beta and click on the get started link in the top banner to begin the signup process. Apple introduced iWork for iCloud at WWDC 2013, bringing Pages, Numbers and Keynote to the web. After receiving "overwhelming response," Apple eventually opened the service to all users a few months later. iWork for iCloud has been steadily improved since then with interactive charts, an updated design, expanded language support and more. Recent Mac and iOS Blog Stories • Apple Reverses Course, Allows Marijuana Apps in Marijuana-Legal States [Updated] • Seagate Seven Review: Hands-On With a 7mm Thick Portable Hard Drive • Apple Introduces TestFlight Groups for Organizing Beta Testers • Buyer's Guide Valentine's Day Edition: Discounts on iPad, iPhone, Apple Accessories, and More • NBC Launches Extensive 'SNL' App Ahead of 40th Anniversary Special • Tim Cook Expected to Arrive in Israel Next Week for Inauguration of Herzliya-Based Offices • ESPN Merges iPhone and iPad Apps Together to Deliver Unified Experience • Starbucks iOS App Gains Support for Apple Pay

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posted about 1 month ago on mac rumors
Apple has been rejecting a number of apps with screenshots that depict violence or guns from being released or updated on the App Store, as reported by Pocket Gamer. As a result, developers have been forced to modify their app screenshots to either completely remove or blur any violent materials in order to get through the approval process. A screenshot with a blurred gun to adhere to Apple's guidelines Apple has long required developers to ensure all front-facing App Store materials are appropriate for children, although it has been more aggressively enforcing its stance against violent screenshots in recent weeks. Earlier today, Instapaper developer Marco Arment pointed towards language in the App Store Review Guidelines that clearly spells out Apple's kid-friendly requirements."The App Store has parental controls and requires all apps to bear age-appropriate content ratings. While violence, etc. has always been permitted in apps, Apple has always required that all app metadata — title, description, icon, and screenshots — be kid-proof with the lowest rating. [...] It’s right there in the rules: 3.6 Apps with App icons, screenshots, and previews that do not adhere to the 4+ age rating will be rejected"Nevertheless, it is clear that Apple has been quite inconsistent with enforcing its App Store review guidelines over the years. Look no further than Modern Combat 4: Zero Hour [Direct Link], which heavily features violence in its promotional images. Developers have expressed frustration over strict guidelines since the App Store launched in 2008, but Apple remains committed to exercising fine-tuned control over the storefront to ensure the best experience possible for all users."We're really trying our best to create the best platform in the world for you to express your talents and make a living too. If it sounds like we're control freaks, well, maybe it's because we're so committed to our users and making sure they have a quality experience with our products. Just like almost all of you are, too."The tighter enforcement comes on the heels of Apple increasing the maximum app size from 2GB to 4GB. Developers that have apps rejected for sensitive content are permitted to resubmit for approval after making the necessary changes. Recent Mac and iOS Blog Stories • Seagate Seven Review: Hands-On With a 7mm Thick Portable Hard Drive • Apple Introduces TestFlight Groups for Organizing Beta Testers • Buyer's Guide Valentine's Day Edition: Discounts on iPad, iPhone, Apple Accessories, and More • NBC Launches Extensive 'SNL' App Ahead of 40th Anniversary Special • Tim Cook Expected to Arrive in Israel Next Week for Inauguration of Herzliya-Based Offices • ESPN Merges iPhone and iPad Apps Together to Deliver Unified Experience • Starbucks iOS App Gains Support for Apple Pay • LaCie Mirror Review: Hands-On With LaCie's Latest Designer Hard Drive

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posted about 1 month ago on mac rumors
Apple's two-step verification system now covers FaceTime and iMessage, reports The Guardian. Signing into an iMessage or FaceTime account will ask users to input an authentication code from a verified device on accounts that have two-factor verification enabled to prevent unauthorized entry attempts. Two-factor verification is an opt-in system that was first introduced in March of 2013 to increase the security of Apple ID accounts. Prior to today, a verification code was only required for making changes to an account, signing into iCloud, or making iTunes/App Store purchases from a new device. Two-factor authentication for iCloud is a recent addition that was implemented in September following the breach of several celebrity iCloud accounts, leading to a slew of leaked photos. The hacking incident led Apple to improve the security of iCloud and it also prompted the company to send out security emails when a device is restored, iCloud is accessed, or a password change is attempted. Last month, a Medium post highlighting some of the remaining shortcomings of two-factor authentication was shared by several technology sites, which may have inspired Apple to update the service to protect iMessage and FaceTime accounts. The post pointed out that it was still possible to log into iMessage, FaceTime, iTunes, the App Store, and into the website using an account with two-factor authentication enabled without being asked for a verification code. It seems two-factor authentication for iMessage and FaceTime may still be rolling out to iTunes users, as MacRumors was able to log into iMessage and FaceTime accounts with two-factor authentication enabled without a code. Recent Mac and iOS Blog Stories • Apple Introduces TestFlight Groups for Organizing Beta Testers • Buyer's Guide Valentine's Day Edition: Discounts on iPad, iPhone, Apple Accessories, and More • NBC Launches Extensive 'SNL' App Ahead of 40th Anniversary Special • Tim Cook Expected to Arrive in Israel Next Week for Inauguration of Herzliya-Based Offices • ESPN Merges iPhone and iPad Apps Together to Deliver Unified Experience • Starbucks iOS App Gains Support for Apple Pay • LaCie Mirror Review: Hands-On With LaCie's Latest Designer Hard Drive • Award-Winning Dystopian Adventure Game 'République' Coming to Mac and PC

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posted about 1 month ago on mac rumors
Apple today made one of its weekly updates to the App Store, adding a new featured category that highlights "Pay Once & Play" games in the App Store. As noted by MacStories, the section includes a list of popular game titles that do not include in-app purchases. The new feature has appeared in European App Stores already and should be making its way to other countries as the weekly update propagates. "Pay Once & Play" offers a range of titles that are organized into the following categories: Recent Releases, Blockbuster Games, and App Store Originals. Some of the featured titles include Thomas Was Alone, Minecraft - Pocket Edition, Hero Emblems, Threes, Blek, and Goblin Sword. Games and apps with in-app purchases have gotten Apple into trouble on multiple occasions over the past few years, leading to a 2011 lawsuit and a $32 million settlement with the FTC after children racked up hundreds of dollars in purchases without parental knowledge. Apple has made several changes to the App Store since the original lawsuit was filed. Apps with in-app purchases are clearly labeled, Apple obtains express permission for an in-app purchase in the form of a pop up, and it notifies users that making an in-app purchase authorizes additional in-app purchases for 15 minutes. Most recently, Apple changed the "Free" wording on purchase buttons to "Get" to make it clear that apps with in-app purchases are not truly free. Recent Mac and iOS Blog Stories • Apple Introduces TestFlight Groups for Organizing Beta Testers • Buyer's Guide Valentine's Day Edition: Discounts on iPad, iPhone, Apple Accessories, and More • NBC Launches Extensive 'SNL' App Ahead of 40th Anniversary Special • Tim Cook Expected to Arrive in Israel Next Week for Inauguration of Herzliya-Based Offices • ESPN Merges iPhone and iPad Apps Together to Deliver Unified Experience • Starbucks iOS App Gains Support for Apple Pay • LaCie Mirror Review: Hands-On With LaCie's Latest Designer Hard Drive • Award-Winning Dystopian Adventure Game 'République' Coming to Mac and PC

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posted about 1 month ago on mac rumors
Apple today announced that it is increasing the maximum app size from 2GB to 4GB, letting developers release apps that are up to 4GB in size. The extended limits will likely be useful for high-quality game titles that need the extra space to introduce improved graphical effects or longer playtimes.The size limit of an app package submitted through iTunes Connect has increased from 2 GB to 4 GB, so you can include more media in your submission and provide a more complete, rich user experience upon installation. Please keep in mind that this change does not affect the cellular network delivery size limit of 100 MB.Apple's 2GB size limit has been in place since the App Store first launched, so today's new 4GB limit marks the first-ever size increase. The 2GB size limitation has prevented some games from being available on the App Store, such as Final Fantasy VII. In 2013, Square Enix producer Takashi Tokita said that a version of Final Fantasy VII was "years away" due to the 2GB iOS app size limit. Though the maximum app size has increased to 4GB, Apple is still enforcing the 100MB over-the-air download limit introduced in 2013. Recent Mac and iOS Blog Stories • Buyer's Guide Valentine's Day Edition: Discounts on iPad, iPhone, Apple Accessories, and More • NBC Launches Extensive 'SNL' App Ahead of 40th Anniversary Special • Tim Cook Expected to Arrive in Israel Next Week for Inauguration of Herzliya-Based Offices • ESPN Merges iPhone and iPad Apps Together to Deliver Unified Experience • Starbucks iOS App Gains Support for Apple Pay • LaCie Mirror Review: Hands-On With LaCie's Latest Designer Hard Drive • Award-Winning Dystopian Adventure Game 'République' Coming to Mac and PC • Parallels Desktop 10 Update Brings Windows 10 Technical Preview to Macs

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posted about 1 month ago on mac rumors
For the last several years, Tactus Technology has been working on displays that take advantage of microfluidic technology, with buttons that raise up and disappear on demand for a superior touchscreen typing experience. As of today, the company is ready to unveil its first product to the world, an iPad mini case called "Phorm." An all-in-one case, keyboard, and screen protector, Phorm can dynamically add and remove tactile buttons on the iPad mini's screen to add texture to the on-screen keyboard. As seen in the video above, sliding the bar on the back of the Phorm case to the right causes small fluid-filled physical buttons to pop up on the screen protector portion of the case, giving users a tactile typing experience while still allowing them to use the default iOS keyboard. Shifting the bar to the left causes the buttons to disappear again, allowing the touchscreen to be used as normal. Here's how it works: there are a series of small channels filled with fluid behind an elastomeric panel (aka the screen protector portion of the case) and when activated by the slider, pressure is introduced, causing the fluid to come up through the channels and into holes, where it presses against the elastomer, physically changing and morphing the display portion of the case to create buttons. In the opposite slider position, the pressure is released and the buttons disappear as the liquid is dispersed back into the channels. According to Tactus Technology CEO Craig Ciesla and CTO Micah Yairi, who spoke to MacRumors ahead of Phorm's launch, the case uses a tiny amount of fluid that poses no harm to an iPad should it be dropped or damaged in some way. In fact, the Tactus team extensively tested the Phorm, performing drop tests, scratch tests, and more, and found that the case and its protective front panel provide solid protection for an iPad and can potentially keep the glass from shattering if dropped. Ciesla and Yairi said that usability was one of the most important aspects Tactus considered when developing the Phorm case. In internal and third-party testing with people aged 19-70 with a wide range of hand sizes, 70 percent preferred the Tactus solution to a touchscreen. The Phorm case is meant to stay on an iPad all the time, alleviating the need to switch cases and accessories regularly to accommodate different tasks. As Ciesla and Yairi pointed out, the Phorm offers several benefits over a Bluetooth keyboard -- there's no battery drain, there's no need to charge it, and it provides access to all built-in iOS keyboard features like word prediction and spell correction, with the addition of tactile feedback for faster typing."We built Phorm so tablet users will never again have to choose between thin stylish devices with touchscreens and amazing usability," said Dr. Craig Ciesla, CEO and co-founder of Tactus. "Typing on a flat touchscreen is still a really unnatural user experience. Adding a tactile dimension to an otherwise flat surface changes the way we will interact with all the screens in our lives. This is just the beginning."The Phorm case for the iPad mini can be pre-ordered today from the Phorm website for the introductory price of $99, and orders are expected to ship in the summer of 2015. There are two colors available -- slate gray, designed for the space gray iPad mini, and sky gray, designed for the silver iPad mini. Currently, Phorm is only available for the iPad mini, but the Tactus Technology team has plans to launch an Phone 6 Plus Phorm case in the near future. Phorm cases for iPad Air 2 and iPhone 6 are also in the product pipeline. Recent Mac and iOS Blog Stories • ESPN Merges iPhone and iPad Apps Together to Deliver Unified Experience • Starbucks iOS App Gains Support for Apple Pay • LaCie Mirror Review: Hands-On With LaCie's Latest Designer Hard Drive • Award-Winning Dystopian Adventure Game 'République' Coming to Mac and PC • Parallels Desktop 10 Update Brings Windows 10 Technical Preview to Macs • iPhone Theft Continues to Drop in Three Major Cities Thanks to Activation Lock • Apple to Open Massive $850M Solar Farm in Monterey, California • iMac Buyer's Guide: Is the 5K iMac Right For You?

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posted about 1 month ago on mac rumors
Pinterest today announced a new partnership with Apple to launch "App Pins" that will allow users to install iOS apps on their devices without ever needing to leave the Pinterest app. Let’s say you’re Pinning workout inspiration to your Marathon Training board. If you see a fitness app that helps you reach your goals, you can download it right from Pinterest. When you come across an app Pin, tap Install to download the app right to your iPhone or iPad without ever leaving Pinterest (you’ll only see app Pins when you’re using the Pinterest app on your iPhone or iPad).As part of the rollout, Apple is also launching its own App Store board on Pinterest, giving the company a place to feature apps on a variety of topics within Pinterest. Apple is currently featuring a number of apps and other pins focused on fashion and recipes, playing into this week's New York Fashion Week. Huge news: we’re now on @Pinterest! This week we'll be pinning live from #NYFW. https://t.co/bSpUWUKPcK pic.twitter.com/oadXbauiIt— App Store (@AppStore) February 12, 2015 Pinterest tells The New York Times it believes it can be an excellent place for app discovery considering its role as a place where people come to share and discover things.“We can be a really powerful service for app discovery, which is a problem that still really hasn’t been solved,” Evan Sharp, a founder of Pinterest, said in an interview. “Our specialty is really connecting people to the things they want to do.” [...] Pinterest believes it is better positioned [than Twitter and Facebook] to help promote apps because of the nature of the service. People come to Pinterest, the company says, to find new things to do, see and buy. That is unlike Facebook, which has been used to connect with friends, or even Twitter, which is often about public discourse and news.The new App Pins functionality is included in a just-released update to the Pinterest iOS app, which is available free of charge in the App Store. [Direct Link] Recent Mac and iOS Blog Stories • Starbucks iOS App Gains Support for Apple Pay • LaCie Mirror Review: Hands-On With LaCie's Latest Designer Hard Drive • Award-Winning Dystopian Adventure Game 'République' Coming to Mac and PC • Parallels Desktop 10 Update Brings Windows 10 Technical Preview to Macs • iPhone Theft Continues to Drop in Three Major Cities Thanks to Activation Lock • Apple to Open Massive $850M Solar Farm in Monterey, California • iMac Buyer's Guide: Is the 5K iMac Right For You? • Sprint and T-Mobile Make Improvements in 2014, but Continue to Trail Verizon and AT&T in Performance

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posted about 1 month ago on mac rumors
Apple's new spaceship-shaped Apple Campus 2 is under construction, and the company gave KQED News a tour of the site, providing them with new details and a ground-based look at its progress. As previously revealed, the building has an enviromentally-conscious design, with features like using recycled water to flush toilets and solar arrays to power its functions. Keeping with this theme, the building also uses recycled parts from older buildings. Photo of Apple Campus 2 main office, via KQED News.“What Apple inherited on the property was several older buildings, all of which were broken down and deconstructed,” says KQED Science reporter Amy Standen, who got a tour of the site. “Much of the material from those old buildings was recycled into new building material to make the new campus, according to Apple.”Previously, most of the looks at the progress of Campus 2 have been taken from drones in the air. However, these new ground-based photos offer a new perspective on the building's height and scale.  The above photo offers a look at the framework of the main building, allowing one to gauge how tall the building could be. Progress on what KQED identifies on Apple's new amphitheater, below, can also be seen, though it's difficult to visually tell how large the amphitheater will be. Apple will likely use this space for its town hall meetings. Photo of Apple's new amphitheater, via KQED News. The latest air-based update on the construction came from YouTube user myithz just over a week ago. However, it's fairly difficult to locate some of the locations in KQED's photos in the video, potentially signaling that a good amount of progress has been made since it was recorded. Though construction has steadily continued through the last half of 2014 and into 2015, Apple's Campus 2 obviously has a long way to go until completion. Other than the main circular structure, main theater, fitness center and parking garages, Apple submitted plans for new offices, testing facilities and more parking garages in October for the second phase of construction. The complete campus is expected to be finished by the end of 2015. Additional photos and information can be seen on KQED News' website. Recent Mac and iOS Blog Stories • Starbucks iOS App Gains Support for Apple Pay • LaCie Mirror Review: Hands-On With LaCie's Latest Designer Hard Drive • Award-Winning Dystopian Adventure Game 'République' Coming to Mac and PC • Parallels Desktop 10 Update Brings Windows 10 Technical Preview to Macs • iPhone Theft Continues to Drop in Three Major Cities Thanks to Activation Lock • Apple to Open Massive $850M Solar Farm in Monterey, California • iMac Buyer's Guide: Is the 5K iMac Right For You? • Sprint and T-Mobile Make Improvements in 2014, but Continue to Trail Verizon and AT&T in Performance

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posted about 1 month ago on mac rumors
Apple on Wednesday released its 2015 Supplier Responsibility Progress Report [PDF] and updated its Supplier Responsibility website, giving new details on its efforts to improve the lives of the workers that assemble its products. For its ninth annual progress report, Apple conducted 633 audits covering more than 1.6 million workers in 19 countries, and called an additional 30,000 workers to survey them on working conditions. One of Apple's main achievements in 2014 was putting an end to bonded labor. In October, the company told all of its suppliers that as of 2015, no worker employed on an Apple line could be charged recruitment fees. Employees have, in the past, faced significant fees levied against them by third-party recruiters, who offer them a job at an Apple factory in exchange for money. In some cases, they lose their passports until they're able to pay the fee. Apple previously prohibited excessive recruitment fees (defined as anything higher than a month's net wages) and required suppliers to reimburse any such fee, but the new ban goes further, preventing all bonded labor. Any supplier who uses bonded labor will need to repay all foreign contract workers in full going forward if they incur recruitment fees. Apple also made progress eliminating conflict minerals (those that benefit armed groups associated with human rights violations) from its supply chain. As of 2014, 135 smelters have complied with the Conflict-Free Smelter Program, and another 64 are in the process of verification. Four smelters would not commit to the program, and will be removed from Apple's supply chain. Apple achieved 92 percent compliance with its 60-hour maximum workweek mandate. On average, employees worked under 49 hours per week, and 94 percent of all workweeks included at least one day of rest every seven days. There were 16 cases of underage labor uncovered at six facilities in 2014, and in all cases, suppliers were required to pay for the worker's safe return home, continue to pay wages, and pay for education at a school chosen by the worker. A 16-year-old enrolled in Apple's Underage Labor Remediation Program, at school in Henan province, China. Apple often finds itself in the spotlight over the conditions at the factories where its product components are produced, but the Cupertino company has for many years held its suppliers to a strict code of conduct that prevents underage labor and provides safe, comfortable working conditions for workers. Apple's Supplier Responsibility Team conducts supplier audits on a regular basis so that Apple can continue to work towards improving conditions at supplier factories. Recent Mac and iOS Blog Stories • Starbucks iOS App Gains Support for Apple Pay • LaCie Mirror Review: Hands-On With LaCie's Latest Designer Hard Drive • Award-Winning Dystopian Adventure Game 'République' Coming to Mac and PC • Parallels Desktop 10 Update Brings Windows 10 Technical Preview to Macs • iPhone Theft Continues to Drop in Three Major Cities Thanks to Activation Lock • Apple to Open Massive $850M Solar Farm in Monterey, California • iMac Buyer's Guide: Is the 5K iMac Right For You? • Sprint and T-Mobile Make Improvements in 2014, but Continue to Trail Verizon and AT&T in Performance

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