Category - Audio
Editor's Note: As we wind down operations, the staff of MacNN is running some of their personal favorite stories, either moments we were especially proud of or -- as with this one -- stories that really stuck out in our minds. Without question, this was one of them. Originally written in 2013, we have laughed about this one many times (only because we can't afford it), but fret not -- some more "night shift what th--?" type stories are yet to come. In the meantime, we give you one of the stories we're glad we didn't flush the press release on -- the Bluetooth Toilet. And yes -- it is still available.
Every day, we are showcasing some of the offers available from our MacNN Deals store. Since the typically sunny summer is just around the corner, today's selections are all portable Bluetooth speakers, including two classy audio devices clad in leather and wood, another that's weather-sealed, and one that offers volume with a solid bass.
Two companies have introduced changes to the way iOS users can interact with their products. Ultimate Ears is updating the UE Boom 2 and UE Megaboom speakers with voice integration, while Sonos has updated its iOS Sonos Controller app to give it lock screen controls that can be used from the iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch, as well as other additions that take advantage of the iPad's multitasking abilities.
Spotify has broken a major milestone, with the streaming music service claiming it has now got more than 100 million active monthly subscribers. The Swedish streaming company advised earlier today that approximately 30 percent of its user base pay a monthly subscription fee, and the number of users of the service continues to grow at a rate of 1.8 million users per month, though at a cost to its bottom line.
It's time for episode 67, and we're going to mix it up a bit this week. Mike and Charles, both of whom are former residents of Orlando, start off the show talking about the mass shooting there, and (despite very different political leanings) come up with a reasonable and rational set of proposals that would dramatically cut down on such tragedies (with proof) while preserving protected liberties, and thus no rational person would disagree. Oops, we can already see the flaw in that plan from here.
Every day, we are showcasing some of the offers available from our MacNN Deals store. Today's collection consists of headphones of varying shapes and sizes, depending on your particular audio needs, including those using bone conduction technology, one meant for use while relaxing in bed, and two personal audio selections that are constructed from wood.
Welcome to Daily Deals, the post where the writing team of MacNN scours online retailers to find discounts, promotions, bargains, and offers for our readers to take advantage of. Yesterday's list has been pruned of old deals, while the additions for today include a 38mm Apple Watch for $359, the Samsung T3 portable 250GB SSD for $80, and the House of Marley Jammin Liberate Saddle on-ear headphones for $25.
Apple has expanded its Back to School promotion into Europe, two weeks after the program for educational customers launched in the United States. Just as with the offer in the US, customers in the United Kingdom, Germany, France, and other European markets can get a free pair of wireless Beats headphones as part of a qualifying order, alongside a discounted selection of Mac, MacBook, and iOS devices.
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Cirrus creates Lightning-headphone dev kit
Apple supplier Cirrus Logic has introduced a MFi-compliant new development kit for companies interested in using Cirrus' chips to create Lightning-based headphones, which -- regardless of whether rumors about Apple dropping the analog headphone jack in its iPhone this fall -- can offer advantages to music-loving iOS device users. The kit mentions some of the advantages of an all-digital headset or headphone connector, including higher-bitrate support, a more customizable experience, and support for power and data transfer into headphone hardware. Several companies already make Lightning headphones, and Apple has supported the concept since June 2014. http://bit.ly/29giiZj
Apple Store app offers Procreate Pocket
The Apple Store app for iPhone, which periodically rewards users with free app gifts, is now offering the iPhone "Pocket" version of drawing app Procreate for those who have the free Apple Store app until July 28. Users who have redeemed the offer by navigating to the "Stores" tab of the app and swiping past the "iPhone Upgrade Program" banner to the "Procreate" banner have noted that only the limited Pocket (iPhone) version of the app is available free, even if the Apple Store app is installed and the offer redeemed on an iPad. The Pocket version currently sells for $3 on the iOS App Store. [32.4MB]
Porsche adds CarPlay to 2017 Panamera
Porsche has added a fifth model of vehicle to its CarPlay-supported lineup, announcing that the 2017 Panamera -- which will arrive in the US in January -- will include Apple's infotainment technology, and be seen on a giant 12.3-inch touchscreen as part of an all-new Porsche Communication Management system. The luxury sedan starts at $99,900 for the 4S model, and scales up to the Panamera Turbo, which sells for $146,900. Other vehicles that currently support CarPlay include the 2016 911 and the 2017 models of Macan, 718 Boxster, and 718 Cayman. The company did not mention support for Google's corresponding Android Auto in its announcement. http://bit.ly/295ZQ94
Apple employees testing wheelchair features
New features included in the forthcoming watchOS 3 are being tested by Apple retail store employees, including a new activity-tracking feature that has been designed with wheelchair users in mind. The move is slightly unusual in that, while retail employees have previously been used to test pre-release versions of OS X and iOS, this marks the first time they've been included in the otherwise developer-only watchOS betas. The company is said to have gone to great lengths to modify the activity tracker for wheelchair users, including changing the "time to stand" notification to "time to roll" and including two wheelchair-centric workout apps. http://bit.ly/2955JDa
SanDisk reveals two 256GB microSDXC cards
SanDisk has introduced two 256GB microSDXC cards. Arriving in August for $150, the Ultra microSDXC UHS-I Premium Edition card offers transfer speeds of up to 95MB/s for reading data. The Extreme microSDXC UHS-I card can read at a fast 100MB/s and write at up to 90MB/s, and will be shipping sometime in the fourth quarter for $200. http://bit.ly/294Q1If
Apple's third-quarter results due July 26
Apple has advised it will be issuing its third-quarter results on July 26, with a conference call to answer investor and analyst queries about the earnings set to take place later that day. The stream of the call will go live at 2pm PT (5pm ET) via Apple's investor site, with the results themselves expected to be released roughly 30 minutes before the call commences. Apple's guidance for the quarter put revenue at between $41 billion and $43 billion. http://apple.co/1oi1Pbm
Twitter stickers slowly roll out to users
Twitter has introduced "stickers," allowing users to add extra graphical elements to their photos before uploading them to the micro-blogging service. A library of hundreds of accessories, props, and emoji will be available to use as stickers, which can be resized, rotated, and placed anywhere on the photograph. Images with stickers will also become searchable with viewers able to select a sticker to see how others use the same graphic in their own posts. Twitter advises stickers will be rolling out to users over the next few weeks, and will work on both the mobile apps and through the browser. http://bit.ly/29bbwUE