Apple said to be exploring original programming

By Cody Lee on Aug 31, 2015

Apple is exploring getting into the original programming business, reports Variety. Citing sources familiar with the matter, the outlet claims the company has held “preliminary conversations” in recent weeks with Hollywood executives to suss out their interest in producing entertainment content.

It’s unclear how large Apple’s ambitions are at the moment, but one source says the endgame is to set up development and production divisions that would churn out long-form content in a bid to compete with Netflix, and the like. They say these divisions could be operational as early as next year. Read More

 

New Apple TV expected to launch in October for under $200

By Cody Lee on Aug 30, 2015

The next-generation Apple TV will launch in October for less than $200, reports 9to5Mac. Citing sources familiar with the matter, the outlet claims that company executives are still finalizing pricing, but the latest options call for a starting price of either $149 or $199.

Since this will be considerably more expensive than other streaming media devices on the market, 9to5Mac says that Apple plans to keep the current third-gen Apple TV around. Its more modest $69 price tag will serve as an entry-level product into the Apple TV line. Read More

 

Claimed iPhone 6s parts show larger FaceTime camera, Force Touch

By Cody Lee on Aug 29, 2015

Some new photos surfaced this weekend, showing what is said to be the front face of an iPhone 6s. 9to5Mac shares the high resolution images of the claimed component, which appears to offer up insight into two of the unannounced handset’s new features.

The first is a higher resolution FaceTime camera. We’ve been hearing rumors for a while now that the iPhone 6s will feature an improved front-facing camera for taking better selfies, and if legitimate, this part confirms it with a larger FaceTime camera sensor. Read More

 

New Apple TV remote expected to feature Wii-like motion sensors

By Cody Lee on Aug 28, 2015

The new Apple TV expected to be unveiled at next month’s event will feature a remote control with motion sensors, reports TechCrunch. Citing reliable sources, the site says the remote “likely includes several axis’ worth of sensors that put its control on par with a Nintendo Wii remote.”

Apple has for years been rumored to be tinkering with motion control. The iPhone-maker has acquired multiple companies with expertise and proprietary technology related to the field, and it has filed several patent applications over the last 5 years regarding motion-sensing inventions. Read More

 

Force Touch code discovered in iOS 9

By Cody Lee on Aug 26, 2015

Developer and noted iOS beta hacker Hamza Sood has discovered code relating to Force Touch in iOS 9. Sood tweeted out a screenshot of the code this evening, saying it appears Apple has been “testing keyboard trackpad gestures on the iPhone 6s, activated via Force Touch.”

Given that the 6s is expected to be unveiled within the next few weeks, and believed to already be in mass production, it would seem the code all-but-confirms that the new iPhone will include Force Touch technology—a feature that already exists in MacBooks and Apple Watch. Read More

 

Apple rumored to hold September event at Bill Graham Civic Auditorium

By Cody Lee on Aug 26, 2015

Apple has rented out the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium in San Francisco for its all-but-confirmed September iPhone event, reports Hoodline. The publication says it has seen documentation from event logistics indicating the company has the building through September 12th.

Today’s news follows speculation from earlier this week that Apple is behind a mysterious “trade show” booking at the Civic Auditorium for the first two weeks in September. On Monday, SFPD officers and private security guards began patrolling the grounds at the building. Read More

 

Sketchy rumor claims Apple is working on smart Watch bands

By Cody Lee on Aug 21, 2015

Apple is working on new bands for its Apple Watch that will add considerable functionality to the device, reports Czech site Letem Svetem Applem. Citing a source familiar with the project, the outlet says, among other things, the bands will feature new health sensors.

These “smart” bands will plug into the Apple Watch’s hidden diagnostic port, which means they could be compatible with current-gen models. And its sensors will be able to read and share data on blood oxygen level, blood pressure, body temperature and much more. Read More

 

Documents show Apple’s car is further along than many suspected

By Cody Lee on Aug 14, 2015

Apple’s self-driving electric car, codenamed Project Titan, is further along than many suspected, reports The Guardian. The publication has obtained documents that show that the Cupertino company is already scouting locations to test the vehicle.

The Guardian’s Mark Harris said the documents were obtained legally under a public records request, and they contain correspondence between Apple engineer Frank Fearon and an employee for top-secret vehicle testing ground GoMentum Station. Read More

 

Bloomberg: Apple to delay TV service until 2016

By Cody Lee on Aug 13, 2015

Apple has scrapped plans to announce its long-rumored streaming TV service at its upcoming September 9 event, reports Bloomberg. Citing sources familiar with the matter, the outlet says that content deal talks with 21st Century Fox and others have been progressing slowly.

Additionally, Apple also doesn’t have the computer network capacity in place to ensure a good viewing experience—a common complaint among users of Dish’s Sling TV and other streaming services. Thus, the company has decided to push back the launch of its service to 2016.

Read More

 

Facebook said to be developing Twitter-like app for breaking news

By Cody Lee on Aug 11, 2015

Facebook is working on a standalone mobile news applications, Business Insider reported on Tuesday. The site says the app looks similar to Twitter, in that it will allow publications to blast short, 100 character push notifications to their “followers” when they have urgent news to share.

“Business Insider has reviewed screenshots of the new product and spoken to a source who has been playing around with the Facebook for Business platform.” The outlet believes the app is part of Facebook for Business, but different than the Facebook at Work initiative we saw last year. Read More

 

Apple expected to debut new iPhones, iPads and Apple TV on September 9

By Cody Lee on Aug 7, 2015

Apple is planning an event for Wednesday, September 9 to announce new products, according to BuzzFeed’s John Paczkowski. The well-connected reporter is hearing that the company will use the stage to unveil new iPhones, iPads and Apple TV.

In line with previous rumors, Paczkowski says the new iPhones—which the press has been referring to as the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus—will feature pressure-sensitive Force Touch displays, improved camera systems and significantly faster processors. Read More

 

Reuters: Apple, BMW could resume talks over electric car partnership

By Cody Lee on Jul 31, 2015

The rumors that Apple visited a BMW plant last year to learn about auto manufacturing is true, reports Reuters. Citing sources familiar with the talks, the outlet says that Tim Cook and his senior executive team traveled to BMW’s Leipzig factory last fall, showing interest in its i3 electric car.

“Apple executives were impressed with the fact that we abandoned traditional approaches to car making and started afresh. It chimed with the way they do things too,” a senior BMW source said. The executives asked BMW board members detailed questions about both tooling and production. Read More

 

New Apple TV coming in September with full App Store, report says

By Cody Lee on Jul 30, 2015

We are finally going to see the long-rumored update to Apple’s set-top box this fall, reports BuzzFeed’s John Paczkowski. The well-connected journalist says sources have informed him that the company plans to introduce a new Apple TV in September.

Pacszkowski says to expect a slimmer chassis and new internals, anchored around Apple’s A8 processor. He also says the remote has been “drastically improved” with a built-in touchpad for input, and there will be a native App Store and developer kit. Read More

 

Apple reportedly approached BMW over using i3 as basis for its electric car

By Cody Lee on Jul 24, 2015

Apple approached BMW last year regarding its rumored electric car project, reports German business magazine Manager. The publication says that Tim Cook and other senior executives visited the i3 assembly plant in Leipzig, Germany during “autumn 2014″ to discuss the possibility of using the i3 as the basis for its own vehicle.

For those who aren’t familiar with the i3, it’s BMW’s urban 5-door electric car that looks like a hatchback from the future. It’s been generally well-received by critics, but with a 0-60 time approaching 7 seconds and a battery range of under 100 miles, it’s not turning nearly as many heads as the model S and other Tesla-made cars. Read More

 

Apple adds high profile auto executive to electric car team

By Cody Lee on Jul 20, 2015

It was uncovered on Monday that Apple recently hired high profile auto executive Doug Betts, reigniting rumors that the company is building an electric car. As noted by The Wall Street Journal, Betts’ LinkedIn profile says that he joined the Cupertino firm’s “Operations” team this month.

It’s not clear what he will be working on at Apple, but it’s hard to imagine it’s anything but a car. Betts was Head of Quality at the Chrysler Group, now Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, for 7 years before leaving in 2014 to “pursue other interests.” Prior to that he worked at both Toyota and Nissan. Read More

 

WSJ: Samsung moving up Galaxy Note 5 launch to August to beat iPhone hype

By Cody Lee on Jul 10, 2015

Samsung is moving up its Galaxy Note 5 launch to August this year in hopes of beating the new iPhone hype in September, reports The Wall Street Journal. Until now, the South Korean company has leveraged the annual IFA Berlin conference to debut the big-screened handset.

Citing a source familiar with the matter, The Journal says the move is part of a bid to give the Note some breathing room before mid-September, when Apple typically unveils its new iPhones—a product that often dominates both the news cycle and consumer attention for weeks. Read More

 

Bloomberg: Apple begins production on new iPhones with Force Touch

By Cody Lee on Jun 26, 2015

Apple has begun early production of new iPhone models with a feature called Force Touch, Bloomberg reports. Citing sources familiar with the matter, the outlet says that volume manufacturing is expected to ramp up as soon as next month.

Force Touch was first introduced in the Apple Watch last fall, and it enables a device to sense how hard users press down on its screen. The technology has since made its way into the MacBook, and has long been rumored for the next iPhone. Read More

 

iPhone 6s rumors: supplier hints at 7000 Series aluminum body, TSMC building A9 chips

By Christian Zibreg on Jun 11, 2015

A new rumor from Asia suggests that Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC), one of the world’s largest semiconductor foundries, is ready to kick off mass production of Apple’s in-house designed ‘A9′ mobile processor for the new iPhones, tentatively called an ‘iPhone 6s’ and ‘iPhone 6s Plus’.

At the same time, another rumor from Apple’s supply chain has reaffirmed that 2015 iPhones will have a chassis made from 7000 Series aluminum, a custom alloy the Cupertino firm originally developed for the Apple Watch Sport. Read More

 

New ‘Apple Music’ streaming service to feature three-month free trial

By Cody Lee on Jun 5, 2015

Apple’s upcoming streaming music service will offer a lengthy free trial period to new users, according to the Financial Times. Citing sources familiar with the company’s plans, the outlet says that ‘Apple Music’ will be free for the first 3 months.

Apple hopes the extended trial period will give users plenty of time to immerse themselves in the service, making it harder to cancel. For comparison, Spotify currently offers a 30-day free trial, and Rdio’s Unlimited trial period lasts just 2 days. Read More

 

Apple looking to change 70/30 iTunes revenue split for media services

By Cody Lee on Jun 5, 2015

Apple is planning a departure from the long-standing 70/30 iTunes pricing arrangement it has with digital media companies, reports the Financial Times. According to sources familiar with the matter, Apple is discussing new commercial terms with a number of players in the video, music and news subscription space.

The split, which doles out 70% of app and media sales to content owners/creators and 30% to Apple for hosting and distribution, has been around since the iTunes Store first launched in 2003. Apple hopes the change can improve its relationships with media firms, and reassure regulators that it’s not abusing its power. Read More

 
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