Launch

‘NFL Now’ lands on Apple TV with news and highlights

As expected, the National Football League launched the Apple TV client for its new ‘NFL Now’ service this morning. The service went live earlier this month on mobile and various streaming devices, and today it comes to Apple’s set top box.

While the NFL Now channel won’t deliver streams of live games (see NFL Sunday Ticket for that), it will provide a plethora of content for football fans. That content includes classic and recent highlights, breaking news, press events and more…

Parallels Desktop 10 is out with OS X Yosemite support, better battery life, and more

Parallels this morning announced the launch of Parallels Desktop 10 for Mac, the highly anticipated update for its popular virtual environment software. The new version is available now as an upgrade for existing users, and will launch on August 26th for new customers.

For those unfamiliar with it, Parallels Desktop makes it extremely easy to install and run alternate operating systems on your Mac such as Windows or Linux. And today’s update adds in [experimental] support for OS X Yosemite, better battery life, and other improvements…

Sprint announces new ‘Family Share Pack’ shared data plan

Sprint this afternoon announced the ‘Sprint Family Share Pack,’ a new shared-data plan that offers double the high-speed data of its two largest competitors, at a cheaper price. The plan, which will become available later this week, will enable customers to have as many as 10 mobile phone lines share 20 gigabytes of data for just $100 a month. More details below…

Samsung unveils new Galaxy Alpha smartphone with metal frame

Samsung today took the wraps off a new smartphone for its Galaxy line called the ‘Galaxy Alpha.’ The company says the handset encapsulates its new design approach, featuring a “carefully constructed” compact body with a metal frame and a solid finish.

In terms of specs, there isn’t anything too crazy under the hood. The Alpha sports a 4.7” HD Super AMOLED display, an octa-core processor, 2GB of RAM and a 12MP rear camera. There’s also a fingerprint scanner on board, and a host of other sensors…

Analyst predicts initial iWatch shipments may be limited due to sapphire issues

Noted KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo issued a new note to investors today regarding the upcoming iWatch. Echoing his thoughts from earlier this month, Kuo says he believes that only around 3 million units or so of Apple’s smartwatch will ship this year.

Citing supply chain sources, the analyst blames production issues for the device’s limited availability. More specifically, Kuo believes that Apple is running into problems with the iWatch’s sapphire cover lens, pushing mass production back until late-November…

Apple launches iTunes Pass in the US and other countries

On Tuesday, Apple launched a new service in Japan called ‘iTunes Pass.’ The service allows customers to purchase iTunes Store credit from an Apple retail store using Passbook, eliminating the need for physical gift cards and redemption codes.
At the time of launch, it was unclear if Apple intended to roll out iTunes Pass to other countries, or if it was merely just testing the waters for a bigger project. After 24 hours, that question was answered tonight when the service popped up in the US…

Apple launches new ‘iTunes Pass’ service in Japan for refilling iTunes credit

Apple has launched a new service in Japan called iTunes Pass. The program is actually quite interesting, as it appears to allow customers to purchase iTunes Store credit from an Apple retail store, using Passbook instead of physical gift cards.

Users have long been able to store gift cards in Passbook, but we’ve never seen a direct-to-Passbook service like this, without the need to redeem a code. It almost looks like this could be a prequel to Apple’s oft-rumored mobile payment system…

Samsung unveils the Galaxy Tab S with multi-user fingerprint sensor

Samsung hosted an event in New York yesterday afternoon to take the wraps off a new version of its Galaxy Tab. It’s calling the tablet the Galaxy Tab S, and it includes a high resolution Super AMOLED display that comes in 2 sizes: 8.4 and 10.5-inches.

Perhaps one of its most interesting features, though, is its fingerprint sensor. It can recognize up to eight different users, and each scan will load a different custom user profile based on the fingerprint with personalized settings, app shortcuts and more…

Rovio’s new ‘Angry Birds Epic’ game launches worldwide

In February, Rovio teased a new game for its Angry Birds franchise called Angry Birds Epic. A month later it soft-launched the title in a handful countries, and players quickly discovered that this isn’t your typical bird-slinger.

Believe it or not, it’s actually an adventure role-playing game with turn-based combat and an extensive crafting system. It features epic battles, epic worlds, and it’s now available around the globe on both the iPhone and iPad…

Amazon launches ad-free Prime Music service

As rumored, Amazon has launched a new streaming music service today, and it’s [unsurprisingly] calling it ‘Prime Music.’ The service features over a million songs and hundreds of pre-made playlists, and it’s free for paying subscribers of Amazon Prime.
Prime members have unlimited access to the service, and will be able to either play music from one of the aforementioned playlists, or create their own. It’s completely ad-free, and comes with standard affair like mobile clients and offline playback support…

Apple launching iPads on Japan’s NTT DoCoMo next month

Apple just issued a press release, announcing that it will begin offering NTT DoCoMo versions of its iPad Air and Retina iPad mini in Japan next month. The carrier, which is the largest in the country, began offering the iPhone for the first time last fall.

The new iPads will be available for pre-order starting June 2, and will officially launch in retail stores a week later on June 10. Those interested in picking up one of the tablets can choose from a variety of purchase plans, some of which call for $0 down…

New report claims Apple could launch 4.7-inch iPhone 6 as early as August

Those excited for Apple’s next smartphone may not have to wait as long as originally thought to get their hands on one. Reuters passes along a new report from Taiwan’s Economic Daily News this morning which claims that the iPhone 6 could be just three months away.

Citing anonymous sources in Apple’s supply chain, the Daily News says that the 4.7-inch model of the new iPhone will reach stores as soon as August. The 5.5-inch model, the report says, will land a month later in September—same as the iPhone 5s and the 5 before it…