Apple patent points to smarter, more automated HomeKit functionality, interoperability with homes, vehicles

Posted by:
Date: Friday, May 13th, 2016, 07:45
Category: Developer, HomeKit, iOS, News, Patents

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This could turn into something interesting.

A recently published patent filed by Apple indicates as to Apple’s intention for an “automated environment” in which HomeKit would be able to track the routines of users and implement automated behaviors based on those habits.

As an example, Apple points to the idea of a heating system being enabled at a particular time or when a particular temperature is met. Apple refers to a central “controller” being used to detect these factors, such as an Apple TV remote or other mobile devices. The devices being controlled are referred to as “accessories” in the filing.

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Google releases Gboard, a third-party keyboard app, for iOS

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Date: Thursday, May 12th, 2016, 08:25
Category: Google, iOS, iPhone, News, Software

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Google is now offering a third-party keyboard for iOS.

Since iOS 8, Apple has supported third-party keyboards for iOS, each with their own unique features. As such, Google has released Gboard for iOS, a third-party keyboard that also incorporates a search functionality.

Third-party keyboards can be accessed from any app and Gboard features a dedicated Google Search function right from the keyboard. This means you can search Google from Messages, Twitter, Facebook, or anywhere else you can type on iOS without leaving that specific app. Google’s pitch here is that it minimizes the need to switch between various apps and rely on copy and paste to grab information.

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WhatsApp arrives for OS X

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Date: Wednesday, May 11th, 2016, 08:55
Category: iOS, News, OS X, security, Software

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WhatsApp has arrived for OS X.

The popular messaging app now has a desktop Mac version of the client, the launch coming a few months after the Facebook-owned service launched a web interface and a month after it rolled out end-to-end encryption for all communication.

Much like the web client, the WhatsApp Mac application relies heavily on the mobile version of the communication platform. WhatsApp keeps all conversations synced across all of your devices. Additionally, because the app is native on OS X, it supports desktop notifications, keyboard shortcuts, and more.

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Apple Pay adds two of the five major Canadian banks, three more confirmed to come online in later months

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Date: Tuesday, May 10th, 2016, 08:33
Category: Apple Pay, Finance, News, Wearables

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In Canadian news that doesn’t focus on a horrible, raging wildfire, Apple Pay has gone through for Interact debit and major credit cards issued by Royal Bank of Canada and Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce. Until today, customers of these banks had to use a non-bank-issued American Express card, bringing two of the five major banks under the Apple Pay flag.

ATB Financial and Canadian Tire Financial Services also go live today. Apple Pay VP Jennifer Bailey confirmed that all of the Big Five will be included and offered the following statement:

“We are thrilled that seven of Canada’s leading banks, including […] every one of the Big Five are bringing Apple Pay to their customers.”

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T-Mobile to begin roaming, other services in Cuba this summer

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Date: Monday, May 9th, 2016, 08:23
Category: iPhone, News, wireless

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This is sort of nifty.

T-Mobile on Monday announced a deal with Cuban carrier Empresa De Telecomunicaciones De Cuba, S.A. (ETECSA) that will see its customers get access to voice, text and data while traveling to Cuba as well as lower rates on calls to landlines and wireless phones in the country from the US.

As of now, roughly 36.6% of Cuban-born wireless customers subscribe with T-Mobile.

Through the collaboration, customers will be able to make calls for $0.60 per minute from the US to landlines and wireless phones in Cuba via the carrier’s $15/month “Stateside International Talk” plan.

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Kohl’s adopts Apple Pay, links service to charge, reward cards

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Date: Thursday, May 5th, 2016, 07:20
Category: Apple Pay, News, retail

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You can now use Apple Pay at some Kohl’s locations.

Which isn’t a bad thing.

Kohl’s has stated that the department store chain now accepts Apple Pay and that Apple Pay users can now pay with a Kohl’s Charge card and earn Yes2You Rewards points at the same. This makes it the first Apple Pay retailer to combine store card payments and rewards in a single-tap transaction.

Roughly 250 Kohl’s locations currently support the option and the company has said that this should be available in all locations by the end of the month, according to company representatives. The system will work automatically so long as a person has both their Charge and Yes2You cards linked to Apple Pay.

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Apple vows to appeal Chinese court’s “iPhone” trademark ruling

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Date: Thursday, May 5th, 2016, 07:56
Category: iPhone, Legal, News

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It has to sting when a Chinese clothing company wins the exclusive right to the “IPHONE” name in court.

In a recent statement, Apple has declared that it will appeal a Chinese trademark ruling which saw the company lose exclusive rights to the iPhone name, allowing other Chinese companies to use the name for leather goods products. Obviously, the iPhone is Apple’s cash cow so the initial ruling was a big blow allowing legal dilution of its most-valuable brand.

Apple will take the appeal to the Supreme People’s Court, the highest court in the Chinese law system.

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Apple loses exclusive rights to “iPhone” trademark name in China

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Date: Tuesday, May 3rd, 2016, 13:37
Category: iPhone, Legal, News

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Well, this is a bit awkward.

In a strange turn of events, Apple has lost exclusive rights to the “iPhone” name in China thanks to losing a trademark suit against a Chinese company which now holds the right to make and sell handbags and other leather products branded “IPHONE.”

The Beijing Municipal High People’s Court rejected Apple’s appeal of the trademark dispute against Xintong Tiandi Technology (Beijing) Co., Ltd. on Mar. 31, state media Legal Daily reported. The final judgement allows the Beijing company to brand leather products including handbags, purses, and cellphone and passport cases with the name “IPHONE.”

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RadTech releases ProCable UHD Lightning cables

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Date: Monday, May 2nd, 2016, 13:01
Category: Accessory, News

RadTech has always had good stuff and this could come in handy.

The company has just released the ProCable UHD Lightning, a charge and sync cable for all Lightning port-equipped devices. The cable itself is braided to prevent tangling and uses oversized, crush-proof aluminum connectors, yet is designed to last longer than most Lightning cables to date.

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FCC wireless auction begins, TV stations look to sell parts of spectrum to help build 5G networks

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Date: Friday, April 29th, 2016, 13:29
Category: Legal, News, wireless

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The groundwork for 5G communications in the United States has begun.

Or at least the carrier frequencies are beginning to be sold, thus allowing the infrastructure to be built.

Recently, television stations have volunteered to sell off their 126MHz “beach front” wireless spectrum to mobile carriers in an ongoing U.S. Federal Communications Commission auction, potentially bringing higher speeds and more reliable networks to customers.

The 126MHz spectrum represents the largest anticipated block for 5G networks according to comments made by the FCC on Friday. The FCC also stated that it is looking to auction off 10 blocks of 10MHz to mobile carriers and other interested bidders.

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