iBeacon rollout in Apple Stores

Posted by:
Date: Thursday, December 12th, 2013, 08:28
Category: Apple, iOS, iPhone, Mobile, News, privacy, retail, Retail Store, Services, Software

apple-store-ibeaconLast week Apple started rolling out iBeacon, Apple’s location based technology that offers a “better user experience”. What they mean is that when you are in a store with an iPhone, they can track your location to the foot, allowing iBeacon to send you notifications with info on the product you are standing in front of, coupons, sales, or general info on the store. It has been pointed out that Apple use coupons and rarely has sales (except Black Friday), but since the iBeacon technology will be sold outside of Apple, it is sure to be used by the likes of Target and Walmart.

 

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Apple includes US in 12 Days app giveaway

Posted by:
Date: Wednesday, December 11th, 2013, 08:07
Category: Announcement, App Store, Apple, Apps, Fun, Holiday, iPhone, Software

Screen Shot 2013-12-10 at 10.36.56 AMThis is nothing new to European and Canadian iThing customers, but Apple has released the 12 Days app which offers 12 days of free downloads, including music, apps, books, movies, and more. The free items are only valid for 24 hours and some content may not be available in all areas. The promotion starts on Dec. 26th and runs until Jan. 6th and is the first time Apple has offered it to US customers. For the past three years (introduced in Dec 2010) that the holiday promotion has been going, the goodies have only been available in Europe and Canada, although it was only available in the UK the first year, adding eligible locations in Europe and Canada in 2011. According to a MacNN article from 2011, there is a history behind the 12 Days giveaway.

“[...] the countdown has its roots in Eastern Christianity, which traditionally holds the Feast of Epiphany on Jan. 6 to celebrate Jesus’ baptism.”

“Many countries outside the United States mark at least the first of the twelve nights, often called Boxing Day or St. Stephens Day. The twelfth night is also seen as the traditional day to remove the last vestiges of Christmas decorations and celebratory foods.”

There is also that 12 Days of Christmas song. This holiday promotion is the second offering from Apple this year. A few days ago we reported on the Holiday Playlist music giveaway which offered 8 free holiday songs from the iTunes Music Store. There’s no calling Apple the Grinch this year.

1Password for Mac updated to version 4.1 with new features

Posted by:
Date: Tuesday, December 10th, 2013, 09:18
Category: Announcement, App Store, Apple, Apps, iOS, iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch, Mac, Mavericks, privacy, security, Software

product-1password-4-for-macEveryone’s favorite password keeper (well mine anyway), 1Password, has been updated to version 4.1 and includes some great feature updates. The Agilebits blog introduces the update and gives a quick rundown of some of the key updates;

“1Password 4.1 for Mac is now available for our website customers, and it is waiting for review for Mac App Store customers. “4.1″ may look like a small update, but it packs some great big stuff [...]“

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Apple grabs another piece of the pie with China Mobile deal

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Date: Friday, December 6th, 2013, 08:11
Category: 3G Wireless, Announcement, Apple, Mobile, Mobile Phone, Services

china-mobileApple has been after the China market for some time, and it’s no wonder. China represents 1.3 billion of potential customers, which would be Apple’s largest market outside the United States. China Mobile is the world’s largest carrier by subscribers, servicing somewhere in the neighborhood of 700 million users. That number is more than twice the population of the United States. It doesn’t take a sales expert to realize that this would be huge for Apple. A Wall Street Journal report, with information provided by anonymous sources, said that China Mobile will start offering iPhones later this month. The announcement of the deal may happen at a China Mobile conference on De. 18th which will be held in the city of Guangzhou.

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Is Apple prepping a 12.9 inch iPad with 4K resolution?

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Date: Wednesday, December 4th, 2013, 09:46
Category: Apple, iOS, iPad, iPad Air, iPad mini, Opinion, Rumor

iPad_mocku1pRumors of a new, larger iPad for 2014 have started to get some traction. AppleInsider cites the Chinese publication, PadNews, which says iThing manufacturer Foxconn has built five prototype versions of an alleged 12.9-inch tablet featuring 2K and/or 4K screen resolutions. It is being suggested that a 2K resolution version would be released first, as early as April, with a 4K version following later in the year. For reference, 2K resolution is 2048 × 1152 with a total of 2,359,296 pixels, and 4K resolution is 4096 × 2304 with 9,437,184 pixels. The Retina display on the current iPad Air is 2048 x 1536 pixel resolution, which is generally considered a 2K display.

 

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Apple in a buying mood, acquires social analytics firm Topsy

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Date: Tuesday, December 3rd, 2013, 08:24
Category: Announcement, Apple, iTunes Music Store, iTunes Radio, News, Services

topsyApple seems to be pretty busy this quarter buying up companies. Apple reportedly bought social-media analytics firm Topsy Labs Inc. for more than $200 million. According to The Wall Street Journal, Topsy’s tools can decipher how often a term is tweeted, find an influential person on a specific subject, or measure the exposure of an event or campaign. Describing Topsy’s process, WSJ noted;

“The company is one of a handful of Twitter Inc. partners with access to the so-called “fire hose”—the full stream of tweets since 2006, which now average roughly 500 million a day. Topsy then analyzes this information and resells it to customers.”

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Doctor Who: Legacy – new mobile game launching on Wednesday

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Date: Tuesday, November 26th, 2013, 17:29
Category: Announcement, App Store, Apple, Apps, iOS, iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch, Mobile Phone, Software, Software

Screenshot 2013-11-26 13.43.43Are you having Doctor Who withdrawal now that all the 50th Anniversary hubbub is over? Can’t wait until the Christmas episode? Well have no fear, the Doctor is here…in this game I’m going to talk about. According to PadGadget, BBC Worldwide in cooperation with Tiny Rebel Games and Seed Studio, is releasing a new mobile game with is being launched tomorrow, November 27th. What’s even better is that the game is FREE! The official press real ease states;

“Build a team of your favourite companions and allies drawn from the extensive and illustrious history of the show; face the Doctor’s most notorious enemies; and relive the Doctor’s greatest triumphs.”

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Waze adds celebrity voice directions

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Date: Monday, November 25th, 2013, 11:14
Category: Announcement, App Store, Apple, Apps, iOS, News

waze_logoWaze, the popular crowdsourcing navigation app, which was recently purchased by Google, announced a new partnership with Universal Pictures to add celebrity voice navigation to its quiver of features. First on the list of celebrities is actor and comedian Kevin Hart (no, I don’t know who he is either). Hart acted on Real Husbands of Hollywood, a comedy-improv parody show on BET and in January, stars in an upcoming movie with Ice Cube called Ride Along. The addition of Hart’s voice is a promotional move to get the word out about the movie. Whether future voices will be tied to promotions is still unknown, but Waze already offers other advertising opportunities for businesses by having the app notify the driver when they get near the business. Both the Waze app and Hart’s voice are free so there is no reason not to try it out. To have Hart tell you where to go, navigate to Settings > Sound, and select “English – Ride Along” as your language.

PPUG November 9, 2013 — Wrap-up, links and presentation

Posted by:
Date: Saturday, November 23rd, 2013, 20:45
Category: Meetup, PPUG, User Group

ppug-meeting-2013-1109 001

Last weekend’s PPUG meeting was a resounding success!

In case you missed it, here are links to the products that Jason talked about:

Download Jason’s presentation in both Keynote or PDF formats.

Rob Parker talked about the following;

Youngmoo Kim talked about:

We hope that you can make it to our next meeting.

Did Apple mess up with the Retina iPad mini?

Posted by:
Date: Wednesday, November 20th, 2013, 08:46
Category: Benchmark, Consumer Electronics, Features, Hardware, iPad, iPad Air, iPad mini, Opinion, The Apple Core

ret-ipad-mini-fanToday I broke down and bought one of the new Retina iPad minis. That is one of the dilemmas of living in a city with multiple, easy to get to Apple Stores. I’ve been watching the local stores’ inventories fluctuate using the Apple-Tracker web site, and noticed that there were several of the model I wanted in stock, so I ordered one for Personal Pickup and had it by this afternoon, which was rather impulsive considering I hadn’t spent any time with an iPad mini. One of the key factors of getting a new iPad was to upgrade to a Retina display, since I do a lot of reading on the iPad. Comparing some my iBooks between my iPad 2 and the iPad mini, there is a noticeable difference in the text, but so far I haven’t noticed the same difference in other graphics.

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