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Friday, April 11, 2014

Samsung calls on Android exec in patent trial to prove certain features were created by Google, not Apple

Samsung on Friday brought up VP of Android Engineering Hiroshi Lockheimer as its first witness in the second California Apple v. Samsung patent trial in a bid to prove the Korean company's devices did not copy Apple's. The main argument: Google invented certain features before Apple patented them.

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Apple hires CEO of brand consultant Wolff Olins in marketing push

It was reported on Friday that Wolff Olins Global CEO Karl Heiselman has been hired away by Apple and will start working in a new marketing communications position at the Cupertino, Calif. company in May.

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Apple rests case in second California patent trial against Samsung

Apple lawyers on Friday concluded their side of arguments in the latest spat with Samsung, bringing the initial phase of the company's case to a close after five days of court proceedings.

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WSJ: Amazon to announce smartphone with 3D eye and gesture tracking in June

Adding to previous reports of an Amazon-built smartphone, The Wall Street Journal on Friday said the Internet retail giant will announce its entry into the handset market in June.

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EditorialSamsung's big bet on Android actually a covert strategy to replace Android

Samsung's success in selling the world's leading volumes of phones through intense, expensive marketing efforts appears to be supporting Android as a platform, but Samsung's internal documents show it has plotted for years to compete against Google with its own mobile OS.

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Apple blocks rival streaming services from iAd, expands its own digital ad team

Apple has reportedly banned British iTunes Radio competitor Bloom.fm from advertising on iAd, even as Apple looks set to expand its own digital reach by adding four new creative agencies to its outside advertising team.

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Apple's Tim Cook encourages US House to pass sexual orientation nondiscrimination act

Apple Chief Executive Tim Cook took to Twitter on Friday to again express his support for the Employee Non-Discrimination Act, a proposed bill that would make it illegal for companies to discriminate in hiring based on gender identity or sexual orientation.

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Wells Fargo defends 'market perform' rating on Apple stock, says company is in midst of transition

Having downgraded its rating on Apple stock in January, Wells Fargo on Friday defended their neutral outlook for the company's near future, characterizing it as a long-term opportunity for investors that faces near-term hurdles while the industry transitions.

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Apple opts out of latest patent acquisition fund from Intellectual Ventures

Prominent patent buyer Intellectual Ventures won't be able to count Apple among the participants in its latest IP purchase, as the iPhone maker has apparently opted out of its latest investment.

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EditorialApple vs. Samsung docs reveal Galaxy Tab was a flop and Samsung knew it

Top secret sales data revealed during the Apple vs. Samsung trial this week shows that Samsung knew that the Galaxy Tab sales figures (and overall Android tablet sales) it and various market research groups had fed to the media were not even remotely true.

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Thursday, April 10, 2014

Amazon buys digital comic book platform comiXology

Online sales giant Amazon on Thursday announced the purchase of digital comics platform comiXology, which is responsible for the popular iPad app 'Comics' that consistently ranks near the top of the iOS App Store's top grossing charts.

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Rumor: Apple to offer hi-res 24-bit tracks on iTunes in coming months

Following a report that Apple is considering a major overhaul of iTunes, an overlooked rumor from March suggests the company may also be planning an entry into the high-definition music industry with 24-bit tracks.

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Apple issues iMovie for Mac update with new features, bug fixes

Apple rolled out an update to iMovie for Mac, bringing new sorting and font options, enhanced titles, UI tweaks and bug fixes to desktop version of its consumer level video editing app.

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Deals: limited time offers knock 3 MacBooks down to $999 or less

A series of promotions this week have temporarily cut the cost of owning a new MacBook to sub-$1000 levels, with over a half dozen MacBook Airs available at an instant $100 discount and no tax in most states, while 13-inch MacBook Pros with CD/DVD iare being sold for $969.99.

Apple releases Xcode 5.1.1 update with bug fixes, stability improvements

Apple on Thursday released the latest update to Xcode 5.1, bringing fixes for reported bugs and overall stability improvements to the software development, debugging and testing tool.

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Apple says iOS, OS X and certain Web services protected against 'Heartbleed'

Apple on Thursday released a statement saying its major operating platforms, iOS, OS X and certain Web services, are not affected by the massive "Heartbleed" security flaw discovered earlier this week.

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T-Mobile slashes $130 off new LTE-enabled iPads, matching Apple's Wi-Fi-only prices

T-Mobile announced on Thursday that it is offering a limited-time $130 discount on the price of new 4G LTE iPad Air and iPad with Retina display models, matching the cost of comparable Wi-Fi-only models, while also still including 200 megabytes of free data every month for life.

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Nike opens NikeFuel activity platform to third parties, adds San Francisco dev lab

Nike on Thursday announced plans to allow fitness app developers to funnel users' activity into its NikeFuel measurement system — in hopes of creating a universal standard for activity tracking across platforms - and backed the initiative with a new San Francisco-based development laboratory.

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Beleaguered BlackBerry forced to dispel rumors about potential exit from handset business

Though BlackBerry was once a market leader, times have become so tough for the Canadian smartphone maker that the company's CEO was prompted on Thursday to publicly refute rumors that his company might exit the handset business entirely.

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Apple unlikely to utilize custom iPhone baseband chip until 2015 at earliest, JP Morgan says

If Apple does bring baseband processor design and production in-house as recent moves have indicated, one analyst believes that the chips are unlikely to debut in new iPhone models before 2015, thanks to the "notoriously difficult" nature of their development.

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Consumer interest in Apple's 'iPhone 6' at record levels, as new sketches show rumored big-screen design

With leaks and alleged information about Apple's next-generation iPhone picking up steam, a new report shows that consumer interest for the so-called "iPhone 6" expected to debut later this year is already at record levels.

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EditorialHow Samsung & Google teamed up to steal Apple Data Detectors for Android

Apple's critics contend that it either doesn't have innovative inventions worthy of patents, or has grossly overestimated the commercial value of its patents. Apple Data Detectors is one example that proves both ideas are wrong.

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Apple confirms retirement of Greg Christie as sources rebut claims of internal struggle

In statements furnished to multiple news outlets on Wednesday, Apple confirmed that Human Interface director Greg Christie will be leaving the company in a planned exit later this year, while additional reporting has disputed claims that his departure was a result of a spat with design chief Jony Ive.

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Wednesday, April 09, 2014

Facebook to remove Messenger from main app to reduce 'friction'

Facebook on Wednesday started sending out notifications to users in Europe regarding the imminent removal of Messenger from the service's flagship iOS and Android apps, a move that will ultimately force users who chat to download the standalone version.

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BreakingNew Apple TV box with motion controls to play 'key role' for Apple this year, but 'iTV' still a pipe dream

Apple apparently has big plans for the Apple TV set-top box in 2014, with an entirely new model that will reportedly feature motion controls for easier user input. But customers holding out hope for a full-fledged television set from Apple are likely to be disappointed.

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BreakingApple's 2014 iPads to sport Touch ID & TSMC-built A8 CPU, 12.9" iPad unlikely till 2015

Apple will reportedly introduce new iPad Airs and Retina iPad minis later this year that will feature the company's latest A8 mobile processor and new Touch ID sensor. Meanwhile, prices of older iPads are expected to inch downward while an effort to deliver a larger 12.9-inch entertainment tablet shapes up to drive growth next year.

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BreakingApple reportedly plans high-res 5.5" iPhone 6, all new 4.7" model for later this year

Apple will release two new iPhones this year, with an all-new redesigned 4.7-inch model and high-resolution "phablet" type 5.5-inch version poised to take the high-end smartphone world by storm this fall.

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BreakingApple 'likely' to launch low-cost iMac soon, Retina MacBook Air still on track for 2014 debut

Apple is reportedly gearing up to launch a new low-cost iMac as soon as this quarter, while a completely redesigned thinner and lighter 12-inch MacBook Air with Retina display is expected to launch before the end of the year.

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BreakingApple to sell two sizes of iWatch with flexible AMOLED displays this fall, prices to reach 'thousands of dollars'

With Apple expected to be fielding a smartwatch later this year, one analyst reveals new details about the long-awaited device, including biometrics, flexible AMOLED display with sapphire cover lens and NFC, among other features.

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