AOL to discontinue iCloud account support for its Alto webmail service come December 2nd

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Date: Thursday, October 10th, 2013, 06:42
Category: iCloud, News, Software

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If you weren’t enchanted with AOL before, then this won’t help win you over.

According to 9to5Mac, AOL has informed applicable users that it will be dropping support for accessing email from Apple’s iCloud service from its recently launched Alto webmail client. Alto is a web-based mail client that intelligently sorts and integrates email from services such as iCloud, Gmail, Yahoo, and AOL. AOL has informed iCloud users who have logged into Alto that support for iCloud will be dropped on December 2nd via the following e-mail:

“Thanks for using Alto to read and send mail from your @iCloud, @me or @mac account. We’ve been honored to host those accounts and get great, positive feedback on the experience from users like you. But we’re sad to say that Alto will no longer support iCloud accounts as of December 2, 2013. We sincerely regret the frustration this will cause.”

iCloud accounts will automatically be disabled in Alto on that date, but users can begin the process early by removing iCloud accounts from Alto manually. All iCloud accounts, no matter if the domain is @icloud.com, @me.com, or @mac.com will no longer be supported. AOL has not shared why it is dropping support for Apple’s email service, and AOL does not appear to be dropping support for any other provider.

Stay tuned for additional details as they become available.

Apple job listing points towards partnership with China Mobile wireless carrier

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Date: Thursday, October 10th, 2013, 06:18
Category: iPhone, News

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It’s the job postings that show where Apple’s headed…

Per The Unofficial Apple Weblog and Bloomberg, a new Apple job listing seeking an engineer experienced with China Mobile’s proprietary TD-LTE network. The job listing notes that the position will “support and drive the carrier approval of mobile phones.”

The job posting seeks in-depth knowledge and experience with wireless systems including TD-LTE, which is the 4G standard used by China Mobile. Skills with WCDMA and CDMA, the technologies used by China Unicom and China Telecom, respectively, are also sought. “This role will be responsible for the overall management of the technical interface to all carriers in the Greater China region,” Apple said in the ad.

China Mobile is the world’s largest carrier with upwards of 700 million subscribers. To that end, reaching a deal with them would provide Apple with a tremendous opportunity to really create a noticeable uptick in iPhone sales.

Just recently, word emerged that in early September, Apple received a “network access license” to carry the iPhone on China Mobile.

Stay tuned for additional details as they become available.

Rumor: Best Buy to open new iPhone 5s, 5c incentive program on October 11th, offer $100 credit for any working smartphone

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Date: Thursday, October 10th, 2013, 05:51
Category: iPhone, retail, Rumor

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Never doubt the power of an incentive program.

Per AppleInsider and TechnoBuffalo, electronics retailer Best Buy appears on the verge of kicking off another trade-in program aimed at getting iPhone 5s and 5c customers through its doors, this time offering a minimum of US$100 toward the purchase of one of Apple’s two new phones in exchange for any working smartphone.

The new trade-in offer will launch on Friday, October 11, for customers interested in the iPhone 5c, according to an apparent internal document obtained by TechnoBuffalo. Those interested in the iPhone 5s can take advantage of the option beginning October 13. For both phones, the promotion will run through October 19.

According to the document, the trade-in program will see Best Buy offering a gift card for at least US$100 in exchange for any working smartphone. That gift card must be used toward the purchase of an iPhone 5c or an iPhone 5s with a two-year contract on a supported carrier.

This new trade-in offer reportedly can not be combined with Best Buy’s existing iPhone 5c offer. That offer makes the 5c available for US$49 with a US$50 Best Buy gift card.

Devices eligible for trade-in must power on, and devices that are water damaged or that have cracked screens are not eligible for the program. Customers bringing in smartphones in their original packaging or with their original accessories may also see their trade-in values increase.

Interested customers may also want to call ahead to their local Best Buy location, as the document notes that the offer may not be valid at all locations.

This apparent new program would be the latest in a string of iPhone-centric deals the electronics retailer has offered. Current iPhone owners looking to upgrade to one of Apple’s newer models can take advantage of a wealth of options to trade-in their iPhones.