Tag - Rumor
This edition of Rumor Roundup will begin with what we understand is a fact: Apple VP of Product Design Steve Zadesky is leaving Apple. The Wall Street Journal reports that he has informed colleagues of his departure for personal reasons. The loss will be a blow to the company: Zadesky worked on the iPhone and iPad, and has been working extensively with Liquidmetal -- the special alloy Apple owns the rights to under license. However, it is his rumored role as the head of the Apple car-technology project, which allegedly stems from is former role as a Ford engineer, that feeds the rumor mill.
Following the release of an obviously fake video purporting to be the "iPhone 6c," an alleged budget iPhone model with a four-inch display that -- depending on who is reporting -- is either an enhanced iPhone 5s or a smaller and dumbed-down iPhone 6. The latest twist in the tale has the rumored imminent new iPhone model now dubbed the "iPhone 5se." In other rumor news, a former major event in March that was to debut the next Apple Watch has been considerably scaled down.
A known supplier of the chassis used in the current iPhone is said to be working on new "compound materials" that could be used to help better disguise the non-metal areas where the antennas need to be placed, according to a new rumor from Taiwan's Commercial Times and DigiTimes, both of which have a very mixed track record on such speculation. Catcher Technologies, which is currently thought to be Apple's primary supplier of the iPhone chassis, is also likely to be working on further ways to make future models more water-resistant.
At a recent conference, representatives from China Mobile claimed that among their plans for the new year was a new four-inch iPhone from Apple that they called the "iPhone 7c," which would debut in April. While the claim of an April debut falls in line with previous rumors about a new or revamped four-inch device, it's unclear if the company's spokespeople are assuming the rumors are true, or if they have been briefed on the product and spoke about it accidentally.
Yesterday, in part one of this two-part series, we took a look at two leading rumors that are founding on rather simple guesses -- that Apple will likely update its MacBook line of products -- specifically the MacBook Air, which is in sore need of an upgrade to Retina screens, and might follow the path of the Retina MacBook with a USB-C/Thunderbolt 3 port, new keyboard and Force Touch trackpad in a much thinner form factor. Today, we tackle the loudest but most ill-defined of the current rumors -- that Apple is making a new four-inch iPhone, and that a fifth-generation Apple TV will debut next year.
Thus starts the season of the rumor: from now until the Worldwide Developer's Conference in June, there will be educated guesses, wild speculation, sketchy Asian-based mumblings, and stock-manipulating pundit fantasies -- along with the occasional "run it up the flagpole and see if anyone salutes" test balloons -- of what Apple will or won't do over the first half of 2016. In this two-part mini-series, we'll take a look at the current crop of insider tips and wishful thinking.
With just days to go before next Wednesday's "Hey Siri" event, speculation on what else might be offered at the event is now running high, with even normally-factual newspapers getting into the speculation game with unnamed sources and unconfirmed reports. We've already run two Rumor Roundups to cover the likely, unlikely, and the good-for-a-laugh predictions we've seen, but there's more stuff to thumbs-up or shoot down, so let's look at the latest.
Two Apple suppliers -- Japanese TV maker Sharp, and Hon Hai (also known as Foxconn) -- are talking about a deal that would allow Sharp to spin off its display panel supplier business into a new joint venture with the China-based manufacturer. The two companies already run a LCD panel manufacturing facility in Osaka, and the new deal would like be an expansion of that existing partnership, possibly along with other companies.
Rather than wait until March for Samsung to introduce it's newest Galaxy phone, Dutch smartphone enthusiasts at Galaxy Club may have discovered an encouraging bit of information while viewing the page source on Vodafone's Dutch website.
A Japanese Apple-centric site claims to have unearthed some details about the rumored "iPad Pro." The latest from the site claims that the as-yet-unannounced tablet will not be a 12.9-inch device, but instead offer a 12.2 inches display. Addtionally, the device is said to have additional speakers and microphones on the top of the device for the possibility of stereo sound support. Allegedly, the new device will be about the same thickness as the iPhone 6, right around 7mm at its thickest. This is a bit thicker than the iPad Air 2, at 6.1mm, likely due to the larger battery that would be needed to run the display.
Now AAPL Stock: 94.02 ( -2.58 )
Apple brings iTunes Movie Trailers app to Canada
After five years, Apple has expanded its iTunes Movie Trailers app for iOS to Canada. As of Saturday, the free app allows movie buffs to see HD movie trailers for new studio and independent features, and explore some other movie-related extras such as photos, behind-the-scenes footage, or clips from upcoming films. Users can save trailers for quick access, read reviews from RottenTomatoes.com within the app, use AirPlay to send them to an Apple TV, share trailers, and peruse the top movie charts. http://apple.co/1UUKtwr
Apple expands CloudKit API, provides web interface
On Friday, Apple notified developers that it was expanding a feature of CloudKit to allow for server-to-server web service requests. "In addition to providing a web interface for users to access the same data as your app, you can now easily read and write to the CloudKit public database from a server-side process or script with a server-to-server key," Apple said in its announcement. Previously, interaction with the CloudKit public database was limited to apps and web only. http://apple.co/20h1RwP
Remote S for Tesla Apple Watch app drives car out
Developer Allen Wong has created the Remote S for Tesla app, which can be used to remotely activate the Model S electric car via an Apple Watch, and drive it a short distance. Aside from providing data about the car and some basic function controls, the unofficial app uses the manufacturer's Summon command to allow the car to turn on, exit the garage, and park near to the user's location. The app is available to purchase from the App Store for $10. http://apple.co/1PprF4t
Seagate 3TB unreliability suit expands
The Seagate 3TB class-action hard drive lawsuit has been expanded to more devices. The expanded suit, filed today, now includes Seagate's Barracuda 3TB Hard Disk Drive, Desktop HDD 3TB, Backup Plus 3TB External Hard Disk Drive, GoFlex 3TB External Hard Disk Drive, or any other Seagate hard drive with model number ST3000DM001. The law firm, Hagens Berman, is seeking information from consumers such as time in service, purchase price, and the nature of any drive received in return from Seagate as a replacement for a failed unit. http://bit.ly/1Pc34Cq
BlackBerry Canada, Florida hit with layoffs
The BlackBerry campus has reportedly been wracked with layoffs. Sources familiar with the company's Waterloo office staffing claim that close to 35 percent of the local workforce has been laid off, with the deepest cuts being made in the BlackBerry 10 OS and hardware teams. Additionally, the state of Florida has been officially notified that the company's Sunrise facility will see 75 people fired. Enthusiast site Mobilesyrup puts the layoffs at around 1000 total. http://bit.ly/1Pc1Rep
Instagram tests multiple account support for iOS
Instagram is trialling support for multiple accounts in its iPhone app with a small number of users. The Facebook-owned photo sharing service confirmed the reports of the tests to TechCrunch, which will allow a single user to manage more than a single account within the app, transferring between two or three accounts with a few taps. It is unclear when the feature will roll out to the public, but it has previously tested it with the Android version of the app since November. http://tcrn.ch/1SPKEKh
Foxconn CEO declares Sharp deal near done
The Foxconn bid for Sharp is allegedly only waiting on specific details of the deal. Foxconn CEO Terry Gou has declared that his company has privileged negotiation rights for the Apple iPhone screen supplier, saying that "we have a consensus, the rest is a process ... I don't see a problem completing this process." Gou hopes the deal, worth up to $5.6 billion, will be formalized by the end of February. http://reut.rs/1SPEQjN