Authorized Mobility Resellers to push iPhones in 12 cities
As part of an expanded push in one of its fastest-growing markets that recently saw the company advertising for a senior government manager, the iPhone maker is now in the final stages of executing a plan to increase its available resellers to around 500 outlets. There are currently around 100 resellers already on board, and the company plans to double iPhone sales in each of the next three years.
PCs outsold by iOS devices, AT&T/DirecTV merger, AAPL vs AMZN and more
Another interesting week at MacNN brings us plenty to talk about on Episode 25 of The MacNN Podcast, ranging from the FCC approval of the AT&T/DirecTV deal for no clear reason (but with a bunch of conditions), to our new column "My Stupid Fault." We also include a full report on Apple's fiscal Q3 and the uncalled-for drop in the stock, the results of our testing of Apple's new third-party SSD Trim support, and more.
Android-based clones sold in US, leading to Chinese government raid
Acting on a tip from US law enforcement, Beijing police raided a factory producing fake iPhones and accessories. Nine suspects have been arrested in the scheme, which produced 41,000 fake phones and could have been worth up to $19 million in counterfeit electronics sales.
Wintel installed base still larger, but Apple sees expansion headroom still
Apple reached a new milestone with its most recent quarterly report, according to analyst Benedict Evans, in that the combined sales of iOS devices now match annual sales of all Windows devices made by various manufacturers. While not unexpected, the change demonstrates the changing nature of computing in the 21st century, which has become increasingly mobile-centric and cloud-dependent -- two trends that have had significant ripple effects through the entire PC industry.
Region continues to offset normal summer sales doldrums
Although Apple's conference call with analysts on Tuesday was light on new information, a few facts and figures about China -- Apple's fastest-growing sales region by revenue, and currently buying more iPhones than the US -- came to light. In the most recent quarter, Apple's "greater China" revenues (which include Hong Kong, Singapore, Macau and Taiwan) jumped 112 percent from the year-ago quarter, to $13.2 billion. That's right, more than double. In a year.
Foreign sales dominate as Apple shatters fiscal Q3 records
The enduring popularity of the iPhone 6 line -- particularly in developing and rapid-growing markets such as China -- has allowed Apple to again beat quarterly best-ever records with its most recent fiscal Q3 report. The company sold more than 47.5 million iPhones, lower than analyst predictions, but which represents 35 percent year-over-year growth. Macs sold 4.7 million units, another record for a fiscal Q3 and up seven percent year-over-year.
Third spot of new campaign highlights 1.5M apps for iPhone
Apple has released another advertisement in its new "If it's not an iPhone, it's not an iPhone" campaign, this time focusing on the software experience. The new 30-second ad, titled "Amazing Apps" on Apple's YouTube page, promotes the wide array of apps on iOS, with more than 1.5 million of the "best apps available" available to buy and download to the smartphone.
Every technology known to man but no signal
The Lake District is one of the UK's most beautiful regions: as well as the lakes, there are mountains. Picture it now: ancient lands, the weight of history on the very landscape around you -- and turn left a bit. Away from all of that, and into a little town no tourist ever notices. Now turn right, second left, first tree past the Post Office, down a bit, take another right at that man with the bobble hat out walking his spaniel, and that's where we are. You can't miss us. Chiefly because we take turns leaning out of the window to get a cell signal.
New ads focus on lifestyle for Watch, technical superiority for iPhone
Over the past week, Apple has launched two new ad campaigns for its iPhone and Apple Watch products, each with a different focus. As is traditional for most Apple TV spots, the two Apple Watch ads focus on what the device can do for users' lives and lifestyles. The two new iPhone ads, however, are a bit of a departure in that they talk directly about features and the integration of hardware and software -- a key selling point compared to Apple's chief rival, Android.
New cases designed for maximum protection to edges of device
Today Logitech introduced its first family of products under the new Logi label: the Logi Blok family of cases for iPad. Comprised of the Logi Blok Protective Shell, the Logi Blok Protective Case and the Logi Blok Protective Keyboard Case, the Blok family features cushioned square corners designed to help protect your iPad from drops up to six feet high and onto surfaces as hard as concrete.
Fortune polls Wall Street and indie analysts for latest guesstimate
As it does every quarter, a collection of analysts from traditional Wall Street as well as independent firms have been rounded up by Fortune's Philip Elmer-Dewitt to put together a consensus estimate on Apple's iPhone sales for the fiscal third quarter for the company, which ended on June 30. While results will be officially reported by Apple in a week's time, the consensus already sets a record-breaking 49.4 million units marker for the quarter.
Samsung profits wither, all other players take steep losses
Even thought it is thought to account for only a fifth of all smartphone shipments, a new report from Canaccord Genuity on Monday says that Apple's iPhone line now takes a whopping 92 percent of all the profits made in the industry. The new figure is up substantially from a year ago, and in likely equal parts reflects the ongoing popularity of the company's iPhone 6 line along with Samsung's recent financial problems.
Slim but good case that adds little to the phone's weight and heft
Who would've thought there would ever be an entire industry based on shaping plastic, rubber and assorted other materials into shapes with big holes in? If an iPhone 6 case is all that survives us, if future archaeologists dig one up from the ground, they are going to concoct some seriously strange ideas of what we were like. Mind you, that's their problem. Ours is that iPhones are expensive, and they can be damaged. One of us just got an iPhone 6, so one of us just got an Incipio NGP case for it.
Mastercard, MLB team up to offer Apple Pay for food, merch, tickets
Mastercard and Major League Baseball have announced that the July 14 All-Star Game and the ongoing All-Star Fanfest, both taking place in Cincinnati, will accept Apple Pay for tickets, food, and merchandise at the two events. The Fanfest, which opened today and will run through to the day of the game, is being held at the Duke Energy Convention Center.
High-quality cellular music streams, automatic screenshot albums among changes
The latest beta given out to developers (and now the public) for Apple's iOS 9, expected early this fall, has revealed a handful of minor changes and features, along with a significant change in how the company is going to handle two-factor authentication in iOS and OS X going forward. When enabled, two-factor authentication allows users to add and verify new devices (such as iPhones) to be allowed to access a user's established cloud services and syncing. In addition to a previously-announced change to six-digit codes for verification, Apple will be removing the 14-digit Recovery Key option.
Public beta begins despite long list of issues, problems
Apple has made available public betas for iOS 9 and OS X 10.11 El Capitan, according to reports. The new software, based on the issue-laden third developer beta released yesterday, is available to users previously registered with the company's Beta Software Program. While the company normally waits until there is a fairly stable developer beta existing before issuing the first public beta, today's releases are fraught with issues and missing functionality.
Analyst says sell-through figures put iPhone at 50 percent share
In a general report full of praise for Apple's smartphone performance and raising stock expectations, Canaccord Genuity analyst T. Michael Walkley has told clients that the sell-through -- as opposed to shipment figures as given by Android makers -- put Apple's iPhone as the top-selling model at all four major US carriers, accounting for half of all smartphone sales. Canaccord is also raising its stock target price for AAPL to $160, maintaining its "buy" rating, and raising earnings-per-share estimates.
Two cases to protect your iPhone 6, screen repair kit on sale at MacNN Deals
Every day, alongside our regular Daily Deals post, we are showcasing some of the sales available on our own MacNN Deals page. Today's three sales worth your attention all relate to protecting your precious iPhone, including two cases for the device and, if the worst happens, a kit that will allow you to repair a cracked screen.
The Beats 1 that just can't go wrong today
Time once again for another episode of The MacNN Podcast, this time episode 22! Since it was quite a notable week, this week's chat between Editor Charles, Managing Editor Mike, and staffers Michelle, Bradley, and Sanjiv is pretty jam-packed. The big story of the week was the launch of Apple Music, and we spend time on both the good and bad of that, but we talk about a lot more as well. Show notes after the jump.
Free agent Matt Bonner claims larger size of phone induced minor injury
A NBA player is blaming the screen size of Apple's iPhone 6 plus for a persistent arm injury. San Antonio Spurs player Matt Bonner is citing his own experience, as well as that of his training staff for the claim that the larger device necessitating a longer reach across the device as well as changes in use habits is responsible for his tennis elbow-like injury.
Next iPhone may sport higher-resolution camera module, more RAM, more
Possibly anticipating continued record sales, Apple has allegedly already begun preliminary production for this fall's anticipated iPhone 6 refresh, with the new models presumably called the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus. Images of a new alleged motherboard (likely to be legitimate in our view) and casing suggest that the external appearance compared to the current models will change little, and that the next upgrade will focus on internal and software improvements.
Share of iPhone increases by 1.8 percent for second quarter in a row
Matching its performance in the previous quarter, Apple's iPhone again gained nearly two percent market share in the US in the last three months, according to ComScore, widening its lead as the dominant smartphone maker. While Android as a platform continued to hold the top platform position at 52.1 percent, it again suffered an overall decline of 0.7 percent, while iOS surged to 43.5, a 1.8 percent gain matched exactly by losses from Android, Microsoft, and BlackBerry.
Good enough to be a To Do app on its own
It's not even an app. The actual app is OmniFocus 2.5.3 for iOS, it's just when you get that, you get this. Yet the Apple Watch version of OmniFocus is good enough, and complete enough, that you could genuinely use it by itself. You'd be mad to, with the iPhone on your person or two feet away from you, but you could -- and it's a remarkable example of what can be done on the Watch right now.
TaiG updates jailbreak tool to 2.2.0, allows for iOS 8.4 hack
Jailbreak group TaiG has released an iOS 8.4 hack, mere hours after the official Apple release of the new OS. The new software revision uses the same exploit that the group used just days ago for iOS 8.3, allowing users to install the Cydia repository, and other phone software tweaks, at the cost of some device security regarding execution of arbitrary code. The hack requires a Windows PC, iTunes, and the newly released 2.2.0 version of the group's tool.
A battery extender case that gives the user options for charging up.
Ultimately, there's one thing we all want from smartphone accessories; we want options. When it comes to keeping our iPhone charged, we don't always have them. Despite our best efforts, and theirs, not all of our friends have an iPhone like us, nor do we have a smartphone that charges off a micro USB cable as they do; then there's the issue of if we have something to plug into. The PWR Case by Prong gives us the options we crave when it comes to keeping our phone up and running. We'll tell you all about it in our review.
Issue may be caused by bad carrier update file, no clear solution yet
T-Mobile customers with some of the latest iPhone models are reporting instances of frequent restarts on their devices running iOS 8. Because the problem appears to be limited to only T-Mobile, the likely culprit is a bad carrier update that is typically pushed to devices "silently," meaning with no user notification. Users have taken to social media sites, as well as T-Mobile help forums and support lines to complain about the issue.
Use has been limited to hinges, SIM removal tool thus far
Apple has again renewed its exclusive license -- for the third time in as many years -- for rights to use Liquidmetal Technologies' patented and unique metal alloys, despite the fact that the company has appeared to do little with the technology. The metal alloy, known for its high strength-to-weight ratio, corrosion resistance and ability to be molded into complex or other shapes difficult to achieve with other metals, has been the object of speculation for years.
A seven-port USB Charging Station keeps you from being powerless
Whether at home or at work, there's a lot of stuff that needs to be charged -- and sadly there's only so many outlets to charge them on. Even if the number of outlets isn't a problem, who wants to always have to answer the question, "have you seen the iPad?" with the answer, "have you checked the bathroom?" The Satechi Seven-Port Multi Charging Dock is a seven-port charging hub that only takes up one outlet, keeps everything together in a single location, and makes an effort towards the Herculean task of making the rat's nest of cables and devices look nice and neat.
Buick, GMC brands will also join 14 Chevy models in GM push to adopt technology
CarPlay has been a long time coming to cars consumers can actually buy, but the infotainment and mobile app technology has finally started arriving to consumer showrooms. Though it has been promoted in forthcoming vehicles for well over a year, currently the Ferrari FF is the only vehicle at dealers now with Apple's technology baked in. This month, however, that changes -- as General Motors is now producing the Corvette Z06 and the 2016 Cruz.
The MacNN Deals return, complete with new offers
After a brief technical-issue-related hiatus, MacNN Deals is back, and so is our daily look at three items you can pick up from the store pretty cheaply. For the first featured items to herald its return, we have selected deals involving an iPhone 5 and two Bluetooth speakers: one with classic looks, the other opting for a more unusual appearance.
Announces new Chinese educational programs to be offered in schools
In a new interview given to the Chinese-language version of Businessweek, Apple CEO Tim Cook admits that the company takes Chinese consumer tastes into account in its product designs, along with other factors. Cook specifically pointed to the gold color option -- first introduced with 2013's iPhone 5s and now expanded to the iPad and new 12-inch Retina MacBook line -- as reflecting in part "the popularity of that color among Chinese users."
Final approval over subsidies, ad content, pricing common in other countries
Apple has lost what is likely to be the first round of a fight between itself and Taiwan's Fair Trade Commission, and has been fined T$20 million ($647,000 US) for anti-competitive phone pricing. Specifically, the Taiwanese FTC said that Apple's customary contractual demand to have final approval on phone pricing, ad content, and subsidies was a violation of Taiwanese law -- which, unlike most countries, gives resellers completely free reign to price smartphones as they wish.
Ford should stop selling cars because they sell more trucks, paper argues
In case you haven't heard, the Wall Street Journal has run an embarrassingly blinkered editorial called "Why Apple Should Kill Off the Mac" which is, on the face of it, nonsensical. We expect this sort of asinine fodder from the logic-averse scrawls of established nitwits like your Dvoraks, your Enderles -- but the Wall Street Journal was once a respected, legitimate newspaper (at least until Rupert Murdoch bought it).
Not just the betas, but what's going on behind them, plus Oculus Rift VR
WWDC has come and gone for another year, and with it a plethora of new announcements and betas. Despite our fairly abysmal "wild guess" record, we did come up 90 percent right on our list of things we "knew" would happen (Tim Cook skipped his usual run-through of how great Apple is doing just to spite us). This time, we look at what actually happened at WWDC, in the larger tech industry, Apple Music, and what it all might mean.
Improvements to HealthKit, potential new FaceTime cameras, much more
Despite non-disclosure agreements signed by developers at WWDC, pirates and leakers are starting to make and reveal discoveries found in the first beta for iOS 9, which is expected to launch this fall to accompany the next round of iPhone and iPad hardware. Among the changes and improvements revealed in the code for the beta are hints of new higher-resolution FaceTime (front-facing) cameras, cellular-only Handoff, and notable women's health additions to HealthKit and the Health app.
MacNN staff break it down into chunks, see if they can put it back together again
As we typically do after major Apple events, MacNN has gathered some of its senior staff to consider the implications, long-term effects, and potential fallout of the announcements and decisions made by Apple via what it brought to the table. The Worldwide Developers Conference keynote is a signpost for the direction of the next year or so, and was unusually full and meaty. Here's what we thought of today's presentation.
Siri becomes more proactive, anticipates user behavior
Apple has previewed features users will be able to expect in the next iteration of iOS. Confirmed as iOS 9, the mobile operating system will have improvements in four core areas: Intelligence, Apps, iPad, and Foundation, with new additions including improvements to Siri, search, multitasking, more apps, Apple Pay, and other areas.
Samsung, most other Android handset makers see contraction
Against all odds, Apple is continuing to increase its share of the US smartphone market in a "saturated" region, reports Comscore in its latest analysis of America's cellphone landscape. Apple's iPhone line grew 1.8 percent between January and March, with iOS now claiming 43.1 percent share and dominating as the leading single brand. While Android sales overall claimed 52.2 percent, the figure was down a full percent from the previous quarter, with individual makers mostly seeing declines.
Other carriers expected to follow AT&T's lead, eliminate money-losing subsidies
Per AT&T's recent announcement that it would end the reselling of two-year traditional contracts by third parties, Apple has now altered its AT&T option on its online store's iPhone buying page to offer only the Next program, an "installment plan" system that avoids contracts and offers the option of early upgrades, but includes a monthly payment towards the cost of the iPhone on top of the selected talk-text-data plan.
Unlocking increases resale value, makes international travel easy, more
This Pointers tip actually works on most other smartphones as well, we should mention, but our experience in this regard is with the iPhone, so we use that as our example. Most people confuse "unlocking" an iPhone with "jailbreaking" or "rooting" it, and these two concepts could not be more different, in fact. This week, we will explain the chief advantages of unlocking your iPhone, or other smartphone, if its not already, and why you should do it as soon as possible -- even if you never plan to leave your home country.
HBO Now, device price drop credited for vast increase in viewership
Apple TV has overtaken Roku and doubled its share of "premium" (paid) channel viewing the beginning of 2015 and the end of the first quarter, from five percent to 10 percent, according to Adobe's Digital Index report. A price cut on the Apple TV units and the announcement of the $15 per month HBO Now service, alongside a steady stream of new channel additions, may have contributed to the increase, which compares to a one percent growth rate from Roku. Apple's iOS platform also continues to dominate mobile video viewing.
Galaxy Note 4 tops iPhone 6, 6 Plus among 14,000 buyers
The American Customer Satisfaction Index ranking for the Telecommunications and Information industry sector this year is now available, and shows Apple and Samsung tied with equal customer satisfaction scores of 80 out of 100. Samsung's Galaxy Note 4, however, beat out the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus on individual model satisfaction, scoring 86 compared to the iPhone 6 line, the Galaxy Note 3 and Galaxy S5, all of which scored 82.
Turn your whole Mac into an iOS keyboard
It is true that it's harder to type on the glass of an iPhone or iPad than it is to use a real keyboard with full-size keys that depress under your fingers. You could argue how much harder, as we do get by every day without carting large keyboards around with our iPhones, but it is harder -- and there's one more thing. We don't cart our iPhones around as much as we think: we are often right there with them at our Macs. Our Macs which have keyboards. Now Typeeto 1.0 lets you use that Mac keyboard with your iPhone.
IBM allows works to select Mac notebooks as workstation options
Only a few months into the program, The Apple and IBM enterprise alliance has already scored one major client, a company that could become the world's largest Mac-supporting business outside of Apple itself: IBM. Big Blue last week decided to practice what it preaches, and embrace the changes that have come about in corporate workplaces since the introduction of the "Bring Your Own Device" movement. A new memo announced that workers could opt for a MacBook Pro or Air when updating or getting a new workstation device.
Data backup, data recovery, and smartphone protection deals
Every day, alongside our regular Daily Deals post, we are showcasing a few of the sales available on our own MacNN Deals page. Today, we're looking into ways to protect your precious data stored on your smartphone, including backing up your data, recovering it if things get accidentally deleted, and minimizing physical damage to the iPhone while also providing more photography options for the camera.
A good case can be so much more than just a protective cover
Every day, along with our regular Daily Deals post, we are going to showcase some of the offers available on our own MacNN Deals site. Today, we're discussing cases for iPhones that add more than just protection, including the ability to replace a wallet with a cover, and two options for boosting the battery life of the iPhone via battery covers.
The newest hardware, trends in industry, and possible Photoshop errors are our topics
Thanks to a combination of the Memorial Day weekend in the US (and bank holiday long weekend in the UK) along with continent-spanning long travel days for your MacNN editor, the process of putting the final touches on this week's episode of the growing-nicely and award-eligible MacNN Podcast was delayed by a couple of days, for which we apologize. As usual, we spent time on the weekend reviewing the top tech stories of the week, and bringing you our analysis.
Flaw already being used as an attack vector, workarounds possible
A new iOS bug has manifested itself, allowing for malicious senders to remotely crash an iPhone. A very specific string of Arabic text can be used, which triggers a flaw in unicode handling, which will lock up Messages, induce phone restarts if locked, and can cause Springboard to crash.
Multifunction smartphone camera stand -- yeah, it's a fancy selfie stick
While IK Multimedia is perhaps better known for the audio software it creates, the past few years has seen the company growing more and more into the mobile accessory space. Products like the iRig, iRig Mic HD, and iLoud have given the company a reputation for creating products that are not only well-built, but also easy to use. Most recently, the company has announced the launch of the iKlip Grip, a new multifunction product aimed towards mobile photographers.
Apple Game Roundup for May 26
On Tuesdays and Fridays, MacNN takes a few minutes to round up important goings-on in the Mac and iOS gaming world. In today's entry we look at the Telltale Games collection coming to GOG, the 35th anniversary update to Pac-Man for iOS, the latest Overwatch character reveal, and Terra Battle's new update.