Articles about Apple

5 things I like about Apple Watch

Apple Watch and Sport

In another universe, I don't own Apple Watch. Either LG Watch Urbane or Moto 360 adorns my wrist. But in this one, I not only sold my soul to the bitten-fruit logo company but I grew to enjoy the servitude. Thirty-three days after purchasing the smartwatch, I can express satisfaction, even if sometimes muted, with the user experience.

I prefer Android Wear for its fantastic contextual utility, but find greater overall usability and positive emotional response from living with Apple Watch. As expressed in the previous post, I suspect that returns rates may be high for this device—at least compared to others that Apple produces. The real measure of any product's success is: 1) Did you keep it?; 2) Do you use it?; 3) Do you enjoy it?

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Did you buy and return Apple Watch?

Pig with Sungleasses

Apple announces on Tuesday quarterly results that will for the first time include its wearable. Already, ahead of the big day, speculation soars about Apple Watch sales. Expect drama for sure, as CEO Time Cook explains how supply shortages constrained availability, leaving investors with more questions than answers.

I am more interested in data the company likely won't reveal: return rates. I took back two. The first: I ordered online but sales started, after long delay, in the retail store before the device arrived. Rather than wait another week, I bought there and later returned the other, which the shop specialist sold seconds afterwards to a family that had come in looking for Apple Watch only to be told the Sport sold out. The second: A week later, I exchanged the aluminum timepiece for stainless steel. How many other people returned one for another because of taste or altogether because of dislike? The measure of Apple Watch success is percentage of returns.

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Apple Music won’t work with your iPod Nano or iPod Shuffle -- not even offline

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Apple has made a few big announcements lately, not least of which is the launch of its streaming service, Apple Music. Even more recently came an update to the iPod line including options at the cheaper end of the scale -- the iPod Nano and iPod Shuffle. But if you were thinking about offsetting the cost of an Apple Music subscription with a low-cost iPod, you might want to think again.

Of course the main stumbling block to lack of Apple Music support is the absence of Wi-Fi on the two devices which knocks the idea of streaming on the head. But even if you have an iOS device with an Apple Music subscription, you'll not be able to take advantage of the offline listening option on your Shuffle or Nano. What gives?

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Apple Pay users could be fined if their battery runs out on the train

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Apple Pay caused ripples of excitement when it was announced, and just the other day it found its way across the ocean to the UK. The contactless payment method transforms iPhones and Apple Watches into cardless way to pay for low-cost items with little more than a tap.

But if you plan to use Apple Pay to pay for travel by bus, tram, or train in London, it may not all be plain sailing. Using a phone or watch to make a payment is supposed to make life easier, but it could also result in a fine. Transport for London has issued a warning to travelers pointing out that if their battery dies, their journey could prove expensive.

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If iOS crashes, don't pay these scammers to get it fixed

Apple pushes iOS 8.1.1 update to speed up older iPhones and iPads

There’s a new-old elaborate scheme going around the English-speaking world, and this one targets Apple users and their wallets.

According to a report by The Telegraph, iPhone and iPad users in the US and the UK have started getting pop-ups on their devices, telling them the iOS had crashed and that they need to call support in order to fix the problem.

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US consumers losing interest in smartphones, but Microsoft 'delights'

Bored

Despite the introduction of some impressive smartphones in the past year it appears that the market is showing signs of contracting in the US.

According to a new report from Argus Insights, following a strong holiday season, US smartphone demand in Q2 (ending June 30 2015) dropped steadily and is down 8 percent compared to June 2014. While Samsung and Apple remain the top smartphone brands, Samsung appears to have failed to woo consumers with its two new flagship devices, the Samsung Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge.

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Apple's App Store is host to 1.5 million titles

Apple App Store 1.5 million apps

Apple’s App Store has passed another huge milestone, 1.5 million total apps.

It is an enormous amount of active projects on one platform, considering Apple’s Mac OS X store only has 25,000 apps. The only platform to rival iOS is Android, which has a large app library but lower revenue.

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Think the iPod is dead? Apple disagrees, revamps range with new colors, and 'best iPod touch yet'

ipod family

There has been talk over the past few days that Apple was planning to release updated iPods, and today the rumors are proved correct. As well as a new lineup of colors for all iPod models, including space gray, silver, gold, pink and blue, Apple has unveiled what it’s calling "the best iPod touch yet".

The new iPod touch features the same A8 chip as in the iPhone 6, delivering 10x faster graphics performance, an 8 megapixel iSight rear camera, and improved FaceTime HD front camera for selfie lovers. Fitness tracking is improved too thanks to the inclusion of the M8 motion coprocessor.

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'Hey, Siri, play the sound of farts'

laughing laugh mock mocking finger point pointing

Apple Music can be used for more than just streaming songs to your iPhone or iPad. It can also be used to play sound effects. Who hasn’t wanted to have their endeavors greeted by a round of applause, or their jokes met with howls of hysterical laughter?

Sure, you have to summon Siri to use the trick, which reduces the spontaneity somewhat, but there’s still plenty of fun to be had.

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Apple owns the smartphone market

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There are over 1,000 smartphone manufacturers in the world, but Apple is still taking the lion’s share of profit from the smartphone industry. A report from Canaccord Genuity claims Apple took 92 percent of all profit in Q1 2015, with Samsung the only other manufacturer hitting 15 percent profit.

This is a big worry for the industry as a whole and shows how volatile the smartphone business is for new and old manufacturers. The report does not include private companies, meaning upstarts like Xiaomi and Micromax -- two of the most interesting manufacturers -- are not relevant in the discussion.

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FTC could probe Apple Music over legality of 30 percent cut from streaming rivals

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The launch of Apple Music has been one of the most controversial for some time. After complaints about the free trial period not generating income for record labels -- a problem seemingly sorted out by the intervention of Taylor Swift -- attention turned to how little the music streaming service paid artists the rest of the time.

Now Apple has a new problem, bringing Apple Music into the limelight for the wrong reasons once again. The Federal Trade Commission is currently considering whether to probe the company for antitrust violations. Reuters reports that the FTC could be on the verge of launching an investigation into the legality of the 30 percent cut Apple takes from other streaming music services such as Spotify.

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First look at iOS 9 and OS X 10.11 El Capitan public betas

iOS 9 Public Beta

Apple has released the first public betas of iOS 9 and OS X 10.11 El Capitan, allowing anyone with a compatible device -- iPhone and/or Mac -- to become a tester. Having signed up for the beta program last month, I immediately wanted to experience what is new in the upcoming versions of the two operating systems.

There is huge demand for the first public betas, proof being that Apple's servers were quickly overloaded during the first hours of availability. You can thank the media frenzy for this. Nonetheless, I have managed to install the iOS 9 and OS X 10.11 El Capitan public betas on my iPhone 6 Plus and 13-inch MacBook Air, respectively. And here are my first impressions.

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iOS 9 beta 3 adds dedicated folders for selfies and screenshots

iOS_9

Little things matter in life. With iOS 9, Apple is offering many such tiny little conveniences to its mobile operating system. One such feature that is ought to please a vast majority of iPhone and iPad users, if not all of them, is a dedicated folder for screenshots! Finally!

The Cupertino-based company released the iOS 9 beta 3 earlier today. In it, the company has introduced many new features including Apple Music. But the feature that will excite the average Joe is new folders for screenshots and selfies.

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Apple Watch sales are a disaster

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While no official sales figures have been released, analysts suggest that Apple Watch sales figures are dire. The suggestion comes from analysts at Slice Intelligence, with figures pointing to sales now sitting at a fraction of what they were three months ago.

The excitement surrounding any Apple launch means that sales are likely to be high immediately after release, but by anyone's standards Apple Watch sales appear to be a disaster. From a high of around 44,000 sales per week in April, Apple is currently shifting fewer than 5,000 of its wearables each week.

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Apple wants to control the look of third-party accessory packaging

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Any company wanting to sell its accessories in Apple stores may as well fire some of its designers. Continuing its image-control efforts, Apple is to phase out accessories that are supplied in ugly, non-conforming boxes. Only those accessories that are packaged in boxes co-designed with Apple will be guaranteed shelf space in a store.

Many manufacturers already go to some lengths to mimic the look of official iPhone and iPad packaging, but it won't be long before this is compulsory. A memo sent to retail store staff reveals that accessories from the likes of Incase, Logitech, and Mophie will soon feature the cookie-cutter look that has become synonymous with Apple packaging.

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