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AAPL Stock: 102.99 ( + 0.52 )

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Tim Cook posts photo from latest China visit

CEO as already met with Vice Premier Ma Kai over China iCloud attacks

Apple CEO Tim Cook has posted a picture from his latest trip to China on Twitter, showing him sharing a laugh with a factory worker named Zhang Fan, who helps assemble the iPhone 6 at a factory in Zhengzhou. While Foxconn's factories manufacture equipment for a wide variety of technology firms including Google, Microsoft and others, Cook is the only CEO to routinely visit the facilities and personally investigate conditions and safety at the plants. He called the meeting with Zhang "an early highlight" of the trip.

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Apple found not guilty of infringing on expired GPNE patents

Company directly refers to plaintiff as 'patent troll,' calls for continued patent reform

Non-practicing entity GPNE, which had tried to sue Apple over alleged infringement of expired pager-related 3G wireless patents, has come away completely empty-handed after a jury exonerated Apple of all charges. The firm, which has attempted to sue or sued most other big-name tech firms over the same or similar patents, had sought $94 million in damages (which Apple had referred to as an "attempt to extort money" from the iPhone maker), but was awarded nothing.

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Rare Apple I computer sold at auction for $905,000

Takes second place in all-time high price paid for a personal computer

On the same day that Apple's stock closed at the second-highest price it has achieved in 2014, a new record-high price for its first computer -- the original Apple I -- has also been set , by a considerable margin. While an incredibly rare still-functional Apple I model (thought to be one of just six in such pristine condition) along with a letter from Steve Jobs was sold in May 2013 for $671,400 , the latest auction in New York saw this latest unit -- one from the original first batch of 50 -- change hands for $905,000.

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Hands On: RapidWeaver 6 (OS X)

Improved graphic-focused website creator now more powerful

Just because you need a website, doesn't mean that the best option is to hire someone to create one out of whole cloth. The alternative is either learning HTML, CSS, and a host of other acronymic technologies, or seeking out all-in-one website design software that allows users to publish a website without requiring coding knowledge or a ton of design expertise. Realmac Software has announced the release of RapidWeaver 6, an upgrade to its longstanding website creation app, and we've had a chance to put it through its paces.

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Cook reveals surprising $17B AAPL stock buyback in Q4

Now at $45 billion in buybacks for the year, double its 2013 buying spree

During its conference call to analysts, Apple CEO Tim Cook mentioned that the company had spent $17 billion in the fourth fiscal quarter on further stock buybacks, the largest amount since the March quarter and bringing the total spent across the fiscal year to $45 billion. About half of the money was spent buying shares on the open market rather than through banking partners, an unusual move for a large corporation. The stock came close to another record high on Tuesday, but has yet to crack its $110 all-time (adjusted for both splits and buybacks) share high.

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GT Advanced, Apple strike deal to 'amicably' part ways

If approved, GT will sell sapphire furnaces to pay back Apple loan

After much bickering in court during bankruptcy proceedings that took Apple and Wall Street by surprise , former sapphire supplier GT Advanced Technologies has worked out an agreement with the iPhone maker that will let it pursue its plan of winding down operations at its Mesa, Arizona plant and laying off nearly 700 employees. Though Apple had initially said it would work to preserve the jobs involved , the deal instead offers incentives to certain employees to help wind down the plant, and provides a way for GT to pay back the money it owes Apple.

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Apple begins shipping early preorders for iPad Air 2, Mini 3

Some units could ship as soon as October 23rd

Apple is beginning to ship the earliest preorders of the iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 3 bought at its online store, accounts say. Notifications are being sent out today. Some orders are scheduled to ship on October 23rd specifically, while other people have been given a broader 23rd-27th timeframe.

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Apple launches mini-site promoting Swift programming language

Shows example apps made using Swift, notes colleges adding the language

Continuing its effort to promote its own streamlined object-oriented programming code Swift, Apple has followed up from its Swift blog with a full-blown mini-site on Apple.com. The new site takes a similar approach to Apple's dedicated mini-sites for education and business, highlighting some of the many apps now built using swift and featuring case studies, profiles and links to tutorials and free resources. The new promotional mini-site is in addition to the regular Swift developer site .

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Apple Pay to be used at both 2014 World Series stadiums

MLB was early adopter of Passbook app, iBeacons; MLB app will gain Touch ID functionality

Major League Baseball, which has taken the role of unabashed cheerleader for several of Apple's financial and retail technology initiatives including Passbook and iBeacons, has announced another embrace -- this time, Apple Pay. Both of the two MLB stadiums involved in this year's World Series will be accepting Apple Pay for concessions starting with the event, which begins on Tuesday. San Francisco's AT&T Park and Kansas City's Kauffman Stadium will both have the hardware on hand for iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus users.

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Giveaway: win one of five copies of Printworks

win one of five copies of Printworks

MacNN just finished its hands-on review of Belight Software's latest update to their page layout and design software title, Printworks. This software can be used for everything from creating business cards and calendars, to CD labels, postcards and more, and for a limited time it's priced at only $30 (normally $50). We have five copies to give away to our readers.

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Apple breaks all-time Mac sales record over summer

Emerging markets, price cuts, back to school seen as key factors

In what CEO Tim Cook called the "best ever" quarter for the Mac, Apple's Mac lineup overall jumped a remarkable 25 percent in a single quarter to 5.52 million units. Making the event more noteworthy is the fact that the growth was achieved prior to any notable refreshes . Instead, what appears to be driving the increase in Mac sales is volume in emerging markets, such as China - where Macs were up 54 percent year-over-year. Price cuts and great back-to-school sales also contributed to the jump.

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Apple pulls in $42.12 billion in Q4 revenues, driven by iPhone 6

iPad shipments see decline

Apple pulled in $42.12 billion in revenues during its fourth fiscal quarter, which ended in September, according to an announcement. That figure surpasses the $37.47 billion the company posted in Q4 2013, as well as consensus expectations of $40 billion, and Apple's own guidance in the last quarter. Net profits rose year-over-year from $7.5 billion -- or $1.18 per diluted share -- to $8.5 billion and $1.42 per share. Gross margins increased from 37 to 38 percent.

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Apple releases iOS 8.1 with Apple Pay, iCloud Photo Library, more

Includes delayed SMS Relay tech, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth fixes

As planned , Apple has released iOS 8.1 to the public. The main addition is support for Apple Pay, but a number of other important features are present. These include beta support for iCloud Photo Library, and the return of the Camera Roll to the Photos app. SMS Relay enables SMS/MMS messaging via a nearby Mac or iPad, and people can now force a device to use 2G, 3G, or 4G for data, instead of it selecting networks automatically. A minor photo-related improvement generates alerts whenever there's too little storage to start a timelapse video.

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Opinion: iPad Air 2 demo shows power of 64-bit mobile computing [U]

Apple A8X chip in iPad Air 2 set to smoke the competition

Apple's demo for the iPad Air 2 during its latest keynote event was hugely impressive. As the company often does during its live presentations, it invited two developers on stage to highlight not only their apps, but also the power of the new iPad Air 2. Although all the technical details are not yet fully known about the powerful new custom 64-bit A8X chip, Apple did reveal some impressive numbers. But numbers aside, if you ever held any doubts about the benefits of Apple going 64-bit for the iPhone and iPad, the performance capabilities of iPad Air 2 as demonstrated should put them to bed.

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Apple opens up online preorders for iPad Air 2, iPad mini 3

In-store pickup options only listed as 'coming soon'

Apple has officially opened up preorders for the iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 3 at its online store . In the US, Apple is currently promising delivery sometime between October 23rd and the 27th. Delivery in fact appears to be the only option, as in-store pickup is quoted as "coming soon."

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Editorial: Analysis of Apple's October device announcements

Event featured expected news for news iPad, surprises for 5K iMac and Mac Mini

Chatter between the staff of MacNN and Electronista is always occurring behind the scenes, but it ramps up when special events or live reveals happen in the tech world. Excitement was amplified this week as Apple took to the stage barely a month after its last event, the September showcase that launched the iPhone 6. Editors Mike and Charles, along with writer Jordan, debate some of the new device information that trickled out of the Wednesday event, while digging a little deeper on the impact the devices could have on Apple .

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Apple unveils new Retina iMac, featuring 5K display

Four times more pixels than previous model, all-new display technology

At its iPad event, Apple also unveiled a new 27-inch Retina 5K iMac , featuring an all-new display that offers 5K (5120x2880) resolution, 67 percent more pixels than found in a new 4K HDTV. Although previously rumored, the new iMac still managed to surprise with a lower-than-expected price tag starting at $2,499, considerably less than the cost of a typical high-end 4K HDTV. The new model, which will be sold in addition to the existing iMac models, also offers processing power up to a 4.0GHz Core i7.

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Touch ID comes to iPad mini 3, alongside other modest upgrades

Older Mini models still on sale

In addition to the iPad Air 2 , Apple has announced the iPad mini 3. The tablet has fewer improvements, mainly gaining Touch ID and a gold color option. It sports a smaller five-megapixel iSight camera, nevertheless capable of 1080p video recording. Wi-Fi is limited to 802.11n speeds, as opposed to the Air 2's 802.11ac. The tablet, in fact, continues to use an A7 processor, despite the A8 being in the iPhone 6/6 Plus and the A8X finding its way into the Air 2.

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Apple unveils iPad Air 2 with Touch ID, A8X processor

New tablet even thinner than iPad Air, half the thickness of original iPad

Through its press event, Apple today unveiled the iPad Air 2 , and a third-generation iPad mini . Both are the first iPads equipped with Touch ID fingerprint sensors, previously limited to iPhones. For the first time, the tablets are also available in a gold color along with previous silver and "space gray" options. Touch ID can be used for Apple Pay, but only online, not at retail outlets.

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OS X 10.10 Yosemite formally released

Lengthy public beta test may help reduce teething issues in new update

On Thursday, Apple followed expectations and took the wraps off the public release of OS X 10.10 Yosemite , its latest update to the Mac operating system. Released in conjunction with iOS 8.1 , features such as Continuity and Handoff will allow further integration of the two complementary operating systems, with recent-vintage Mac users able to make and receive phone calls and SMS text messages, or be automatically prompted to pick up the last-used app on the other platform right where they left off.

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Apple event: Apple Pay, iOS 8.1 October 20; Yosemite available now

All the October Apple event news from the Cupertino Town Hall

Apple's October product event has begun. Alongside Apple CEO Tim Cook calling the iPhone 6 launch the "biggest launch ever," Apple has announced that Apple Pay is "getting going" in the United States. The official launch of Apple Pay is Monday, October 20 to compatible device users. Apple has also shown details of iOS 8.1, with improvements to photo and video storage.

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Pre-event roundup: what to expect at today's Apple unveiling

New iPads for sure, but invitation may hints at a surprise or two

Many sites, pundits and people think they have a sure grip on what's going to be announced later today at Apple's press event , which begins at 10AM Pacific time (1PM Eastern time) and is being held in Apple's own community town hall theatre at the company's headquarters. This generally means a smaller affair and a strictly press-only audience, and on tap for the event is the expected announcement of new iPad models. But what else is likely to happen? We weigh up the rumors and make a few wild guesses.

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Apple warns devs of upcoming iTunes Connect maintenance

Analytics portal to be taken offline for maintenance for six hours next Sunday

According to a brief notification sent to developers, Apple is planning to take iTunes Connect offline for approximately six hours starting at 6AM Pacific on Sunday, October 26. The portal is used by developers to submit, take down, update, adjust pricing and study analytics of apps submitted to the Mac and iOS App Stores. The modest maintenance downtime is unusual in light of Apple annual and longer downtime that usually happens in December.

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Apple leaks images, features for second-gen iPad Air, third-gen Mini

Leak coincides with Google Nexus 9 announcement

New screenshots for Apple's iOS 8 User Guide have revealed details of the new iPads the company is expected to reveal tomorrow . The tablets are identified as the "iPad Air 2" and "iPad mini 3." Both appear similar to their predecessors design-wise, but are equipped with Touch ID sensors. The screenshots also indicate that the Air 2's camera will support burst photography, as on the iPhone 5s, 6, and 6 Plus.

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Opinion: Four reasons why iPhone 6 is the best smartphone experience

If you want the best smartphone experience you can have, only iPhone can deliver it

Making the decision to buy a smartphone needs to take into account more factors than simply the hardware specifications of the device. While this might be a starting point, there is a lot more to the contemporary smartphone experience than the device itself. There needs to be an overall balance between the hardware, software, services and overall system integration - and on each of these counts, Apple and its iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus continues to lead the competition.

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Apple asks court to seal objections in GT Advanced Tech lawsuit

Company's desire for secrecy could result in another tangle with the DOJ

This Wednesday, the court handling the bankruptcy proceeding for GT Advanced Technology will hear arguments from Apple that its objections to GT's bankruptcy filing should be sealed so as to protect sensitive information, including product plans, research finds and business dealings. The request could bring the iPhone maker into another dispute with the US Department of Justice, which is acting as the US trustee in the case, and the state of New Hampshire -- both of whom want the filings to be public.

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Macworld/iWorld expo going 'on hiatus,' will skip 2015

Troubled brand suffers new blow

The Macworld/iWorld expo is being put "on hiatus," and will not take place in 2015, according to organizer IDG World Expo. The 2014 event was held in March. IDG hasn't offered an explanation for the decision, nor has it suggested how, when, or even if the expo will return. It does say that MacIT, its Apple-themed enterprise event, will still take place next year and have details announced "in the coming weeks."

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Apple to open two new US retail stores this week

Company increasing pace of US store openings as new products roll out

Apple has departed from its slower 1-2 new or revamped store openings per month for its US operations, and will launch its third and fourth US-based stores this month in Florida and New Hampshire, respectively, this week. Following on the heels of store openings in Marlborough, Massachusetts and Trumbull, Connecticut , the company will unveil its next store in Sarasota, Florida as part of the grand opening of a new, $315 million University Town Center mall on October 16. A new store in Manchester, New Hampshire will open on October 18.

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Apple confirms 36 more regions getting iPhone 6, 6 Plus in October

Expansions due on 17th, 23rd, 24th, 30th, and 31st

Although some launches were previously announced , Apple has today confirmed that 36 more regions will be getting the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus throughout the month. China, India, and Monaco are leading the new wave of expansion beginning October 17. Israel is due on the 23rd, while the Czech Republic, French West Indies, Greenland, Malta, Poland, Reunion Island, and South Africa are scheduled for the 24th.

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Leaks peg October 18 date for Apple Pay, new service details

Official announcement expected at Oct. 16th press event

A leaked internal memo from US pharmacy chain Walgreens suggests that Apple Pay will launch this Saturday, October 18. The memo asks store managers to prepare workers for questions from the public. It also suggests that people will "only need to tap their iPhone 6 to the upper portion of the pinpad" to make a purchase. In truth the technology is slightly more complex, requiring a person to have a digit on their Touch ID sensor, and Apple Pay pre-configured with the card(s) they intend to use.

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