Apple unveils 2017 Back to School deals: free Beats with select iPad Pro & Mac purchases

Apple on Wednesday announced its 2017 Back to School promotion for customers in the United States and Canada. Students, teachers and university staff members will get a free Beats Solo3 wireless headphones when they purchase an eligible Mac with education pricing, including the MacBook, MacBook Pro, MacBook Air, iMac and Mac Pro models.

If you opt for a 10.5-inch or 12.9-inch iPad Pro, Apple will treat you to a free BeatsX wireless earphones or you can pay $50 extra to get a Powerbeats3 in-ear headphones or $150 extra for the Solo3 on-ear wireless headphones.

The Solo3 headphones are a great choice because they contain Apple's W1 chip for more reliable connections, better sound quality and longer battery life compared to Solo2.

The 2017 Back to School deals area available to students enrolled in college, parents, teachers and faculty members. Verification is required at checkout.

Apple also recommends Back to School accessories such as AirPods, Apple TV and more.

Plus, students can take advantage of existing Apple Music deal with a monthly subscription available to eligible students half price at just five bucks per month, or sixty bucks per year.

The Back to School promotion for customers in Australia, New Zealand and Japan went live back in January. It offered an Apple Store credit in exchange for a qualified iMac, Mac Pro, MacBook/Air/Pro or iPad Pro purchase made from February 7 to March 16.

Canada’s largest sport retailer is now selling Apple Watch

In what may be the first sport chain retailer to sell Apple Watch, Canada's Sport Check stores are now selling Apple Watch. Sport Check files as the country's largest sport retailer.

As first noted by PatentlyApple, the Apple Watch listing over at the official Sport Check website now has the latest Apple Watch Series 2 and Apple Watch Nike+ models on sale, in addition to the previous-generation Apple Watch hardware.

The new Sport Chek ads for Apple Watch began hitting the market last week.

It would seem that selling Apple Watch through specialized sport retailers may be a new thing. At any rate, we'll keep you informed if the Cupertino company expands this latest initiative to sport retail chains elsewhere.

Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Links for iPhone now available in U.S. and Canada

Keeping true to its promise, Konami today expanded the popular card-trading game Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Links to App Stores in the United States and Canada following its soft-launch in Japan this past November.

Available at no charge with non-compulsory In-App Purchases, the game brings to life the popular Yu-Gi-Oh! official trading card game, allowing Duelists to kindle the spirit of Yami Yugi, Seto Kaiba and other beloved characters in competitive card battle action.

Blackberry opens brand new autonomous driving research center in Ottawa, Canada

Following its decision to exit the smartphone hardware business and focus on software, Blackberry today opened a new research and development center in Ottawa, Canada. The facility is dedicated to the development of autonomous driving software. According to Reuters, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau attended the launch.

The facility is being run by Blackberry subsidiary QNX, which makes advanced driver assistance and autonomous vehicle technology used by car makers worldwide.

Apple’s 2016 Back to School promo goes live in the United States and Canada

Having launched in Australia and New Zealand in January, Apple announced that its annual Back to School promotion is live starting today through September 5, 2016 at Apple retail and campus stores in the United States, Puerto Rico and Canada.

The promotion gives qualifying students, parents of students and educators who buy an eligible Mac with education pricing a free pair of Beats Solo2 Wireless headphones, or Powerbeats2 Wireless for eligible iPhone or iPad purchases.

Canadian police have had BlackBerry’s global decryption key since 2010

Canadian police have been in possession of a BlackBerry's global decryption key since 2010, reports Vice. The site says recently released court documents reveal that the key was used in a criminal investigation to intercept over 1 million BBM messages.

The documents were made public after members of a Montreal crime syndicate pleaded guilty to their role in a 2011 murder, and they shine some light on the extent that BlackBerry, as well as telco giant Rogers, is willing to cooperate with investigators.

Apple rumored to open R&D facility in Canada

Citing several sources, Ottawa Business Journal reported yesterday that Apple has leased office space in the G. Best Building located at a business complex in Kanata, Ontario, which is a suburb of the Canadian capital Ottawa and also home to BlackBerry’s automotive division, QNX Software Systems.

The 22,100-square-foot suite at 411 Legget Dr. in the Kanata Research Park will be reportedly devoted to research and development, marking Apple's first such facility in Canada.

Apple Pay hits Canada with American Express

A year following its October 2014 debut in the United States, Apple's mobile payments service is now available to American Express cardholders in Canada, the company said on Twitter.

“Cardmembers can earn the same rewards they already enjoy using Amex with Apple Pay,” said the financial services corporation. In addition to the US and UK, where Apple Pay launched this summer, this marks the third country where the service is available.