Retina iPad mini retail sales limited to Personal Pickup

Posted by:
Date: Wednesday, November 13th, 2013, 08:46
Category: Apple, Consumer Electronics, Hardware, iPad mini, News, Retail Store

ret-ipad-mini-adAfter this morning’s excitement following the release of the Retina iPad mini, I found myself in downtown San Francisco today and thought I’d swing by the Apple Store to see how crazy the new mini’s sales were. When I got there, it was strangely quiet, “quiet” being a relative term when used to describe the Union Square store which is almost always full of tourists, business travelers, and just about anyone else you can think of.

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Pebble app updated for iOS with better notification support

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Date: Tuesday, November 12th, 2013, 08:07
Category: Accessory, App Store, Apps, iOS, iPhone, Software, Wearables

Pebble-130The latest version of the iOS Pebble app finally hit the AppStore Monday, implementing changes that were announced last week in an online announcement by Pebble. The Pebble Smartwatch app hit version 1.3.0 and adds support for additional app notifications in iOS 7. Previously, notifications were limited to mainly email, text messages, and Caller ID. Now, the device can display notifications from just about any app including Twitter, FaceBook, Instagram, etc. The update also improves on a number of features, such as Caller ID, which would typically just show the caller’s number even though it was supposed to grab names from your Contacts. Watch apps that pull information from the web to display information such as weather, stock information, and the like, are supposed to work better as well. And of course, several bugs were squashed such as the watch continuing to vibrate even when you picked up on the call it was notifying you about. Determining which apps send notifications to your watch is managed by iOS 7′s Notification Center. The new app will show you instructions on how to do this once you’ve updated the watch’s firmware. These features are supported in iOS 7 for the iPhone 4S and higher.

They’re heeeeeeeeere! New Retina iPad mini sneaks into the store

Posted by:
Date: Tuesday, November 12th, 2013, 04:33
Category: Announcement, Apple, Consumer Electronics, iOS, iPad mini, Retail Store

poltergeist1Without any kind of fanfare, or even a spooky little girl to tip us off, Apple snuck the new Retina iPad mini into the online store shortly after midnight PST. No sign of even the store being down as I alluded to earlier. It remains to be seen whether the devices actually hit retail shelves when the stores open later today, but you can certainly order one, with the longest wait times listed as 5-10 days. Currently if you select the Personal Pickup option, it looks like none of the stores have availability, but they may just be because it won’t show until opening hours.

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Late Night Bulletin: Apple may release iPad mini with Retina display tomorrow

Posted by:
Date: Monday, November 11th, 2013, 23:01
Category: Announcement, Hardware, iPad mini, Rumor

apple-store-down questionWith the release of the iPhone 5S, iPhone 5C, and the iPad Air out of the way, people can focus on the next big thing; the new iPad mini. Many sources have been suggesting a November 21st release for the smaller tablet or a possible delay of another week to hit the stores on Black Friday, but now some info has come to light that may suggest that we will see our new little friend tomorrow morning. Yes, that’s right, TOMORROW MORNING! Earlier today, MacRumors posted an image of a tweet from user @puntomacrd which showed the date November 12, 2013 for the new iPad mini’s debut on Apple’s own service provider web portal. (more…)

Pebble announces SDK 2.0 and better iOS notifications

Posted by:
Date: Friday, November 8th, 2013, 08:28
Category: Accessory, Announcement, Consumer Electronics, Gadget

Pebble_notificationsWednesday morning, via streaming video, Pebble’s CEO Eric Migicovsky opened up the presentation with an overview of the upcoming additions to the Pebble smart-watch’s capabilities which will be unlocked with the release of the Pebble SDK (Software Development Kit) version 2.0. You can read the main points from his introduction on the Pebble Blog, which also includes numbers on Pebble sales as well as active app developers. The majority of the remaining announcement was aimed purely at developers, and talked extensively about the programming details of the new SDK. If you missed it, you can watch a video recording of the entire announcement on Pebble’s channel over at YouTube.

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Things 2.2.3 update released

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Date: Tuesday, November 5th, 2013, 08:14
Category: App Store, Mac, Mavericks, Software

Things for MacHot on the heels of Cultured Code‘s Things 2.2.2 update comes version 2.2.3 of the popular task manager, which adds the following changes:

  • Fixed a bug with Daylight Savings Time which can cause weekly repeating tasks to show in Daily Review a day early.
  • Fixed a bug where repeating tasks created on the Mac would show up on iOS with an end date of Dec 31, 4000.

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RoaringApps updated for Mavericks compatibility

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Date: Friday, November 1st, 2013, 06:46
Category: iOS, Mavericks, Software, Websites

roaringapps_chartIf you’ve never heard of it, RoaringApps is a web site that crowd-sources information about Mac OS software compatibility, and then compiles it into handy, searchable database. I have both used and contributed to the site in the past and it is a great resource to use before upgrading your OS to see if your critical programs will run smoothly. The site started as a wiki 2010 to list Snow Leopard compatibility. Earlier this summer, the web site was updated to version 2.0 and now includes lists for Snow Leopard through Mavericks, and now even shows mobile app compatibility with iOS 5 through iOS 7. (more…)

iOS 7 daylight savings time bug located, Calendar program affected

Posted by:
Date: Monday, October 28th, 2013, 09:49
Category: iOS, News, Software

ios7logo

On the upside, at least they know about this bug and can deal with it.

Per AppleInsider, owners of iOS devices running the latest version of Apple’s mobile operating system awoke to a display error in iOS 7′s calendar app caused by the switch to daylight saving time.

Several users have reported the line indicating the current time is displaced by one hour in the calendar app — for example, at 12:15 p.m., the calendar app draws the “current time” line in the slot for 1:15 p.m., despite displaying the correct time beside the line and in the system notification bar.

The bug reportedly does not affect scheduled alarms or calendar events, the times for which are adjusted properly.

Time zone support is a recurring issue for Apple’s software and operating systems. In 2010, iOS 4 contained a bug that did not properly shift alarm schedules when Daylight Savings Time ended, causing some European iPhone owners to miss appointments or wake up late for work, while Australians were woken up early.

In 2011, another iOS 4 bug caused non-recurring alarms to be disabled when clocks ticked over to January 1, 2011. Apple eventually fixed both issues.

If you’ve seen this bug on your end, please let us know in the comments.

Apple TV 6.0.1 update goes live, now available for download

Posted by:
Date: Thursday, October 24th, 2013, 23:48
Category: Apple TV, News, Software

There’ve been updates galore this week…and this is one of them.

Per AppleInsider, Apple on Thursday released a new Apple TV software update, bringing the set-top streamer’s firmware up to version 6.0.1.

Apple’s latest Apple TV version 6.0.1, dubbed build 11B511d, comes one day after the company rolled out a dedicated channel for iMovie Theater, the new video sharing feature that debuted with iMovie for iOS and Mac on Tuesday.

As the update has yet to hit Apple’s Support Downloads webpage, it is unknown what changes were made to the software. A quick look reveals no major user interface or content additions, suggesting version 6.0.1 is a point update that deals with backend fixes and performance improvements.

In September, a major release added support for iTunes Radio and AirPlay over iCloud.

Apple TV version 6.0.1 is available now as an over-the-air download for second- and third-generation devices.

If you’ve tried the new version and have any feedback to offer, please let us know in the comments.

Apple introduces Retina iPad mini, aims for November release date

Posted by:
Date: Wednesday, October 23rd, 2013, 00:31
Category: Hardware, iPad, iPad mini, News

Now THIS is the thing you’ve been hankering for.

Per Macworld, Apple announced a new iPad mini with Retina display at its press event on Tuesday, the company also lowering prices for the original iPad mini, giving its smaller tablet much-anticipated upgrades to its screen, processor, cameras, and more.

As hoped and expected—the new iPad mini with Retina display ups the screen resolution to Retina quality, going from 1024 by 768 pixels to 2048 by 1536 pixels at the same 7.9-inch (diagonal) screen size. This change raises the iPad mini’s pixel density from 163 pixels per inch to 326 pixels per inch—a density almost identical to that of the iPhone 5s.


ipadminiretina

The new mini gets some upgrades on the inside, as well. Whereas the original mini used the same dual-core A5 processor, at the same clock speed, as the two-and-a-half-year-old iPad 2, the new mini line bumps its horsepower significantly by using Apple’s 64-bit A7 processor, similar to the one in the iPhone 5s. During Tuesday’s media event, Apple senior vice president of worldwide marketing Phil Schiller said that the new processor makes the Retina iPad mini up to four times as fast as its predecessor for processor-intensive tasks, and up to eight times faster for graphics-intensive tasks. Like the new full-size iPad, the iPad mini with Retina display also features Apple’s M7 motion coprocessor, which can monitor the device’s various motion sensors (accelerometer, compass, and gyroscope) without having to wake the main processor.

The new mini also gains upgraded wireless capabilities thanks to dual Wi-Fi antennas and support for MIMO (multiple input, multiple output) technology. Apple says this change allows the new iPad mini to communicate at up to twice the bandwidth: 300 MBps (megabytes per second). The cellular-equipped versions of the new iPad mini also include expanded LTE capabilities, allowing them to work on more LTE networks around the world.

Apple has also upgraded the iPad mini’s cameras slightly. Though the resolution of those cameras hasn’t changed (5 megapixels for the rear camera, 1.2 megapixels for the front FaceTime HD camera), the company says the new iPad mini gains larger pixels and improved backside illumination sensors in order to take better low-light photos. In addition, the improved image-signal processing of the A7 processor should provide better overall camera performance.

Apple says the new iPad mini with Retina display offers the same 10-hour battery life as the original iPad mini. However, it appears that accomplishing this feat while adding the additional power drain of a Retina display required Apple to increase—ever so slightly—the size and weight of the new iPad mini. The new version is exactly the same height (200mm) and width (134.7mm) as the original, but it’s a tiny big thicker (7.5mm compared to 7.2mm) and a little bit heavier: 331 grams versus 308 grams for the Wi-Fi model, and 341 grams versus 312 grams for the Wi-Fi + Cellular version.

The iPad mini with Retina display will be available in silver/white or Space Gray/black “later in November,” according to Apple. The Wi-Fi versions will retail for US$399 for 16GB, US$499 for 32GB, US$599 for 64GB, and US$699 for 128GB—a first in that capacity for the iPad mini. Cellular versions add US$130 to each: US$529, US$629, US$729, and US$829, respectively.

By all accounts, the original iPad mini has been a big hit for Apple, even though other small tablets, such as the latest Nexus 7, have debuted with better specs or lower prices. The new iPad mini line should blunt some of that spec-sheet-based criticism.

Along with the new iPad mini units, the company is keeping the original iPad mini around—in a single configuration—as a lower-price option. Specifically, the 16GB Wi-Fi iPad mini is now priced at US$299, rather than its original price of US$329, with the Wi-Fi + Cellular version at US$429. The cellular version is available for the U.S. networks of AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, and Verizon.

Apple did make one minor change to the original iPad mini: It’s now available in Space Gray or Silver, rather than the original black or white. It is available now.

Both iPad mini versions (Retina and non-Retina) ship with iOS 7 installed, and—as with all devices running iOS 7—allow you to download Apple’s iLife and iWork suites for iOS free of charge.

Finally, Apple announced new cases for its new Retina iPad mini. The new iPad mini Smart Cover, made of polyurethane, will sell for US$39. A new leather iPad Smart Case will cost US$69.

As always, let us know what you make of this and if Apple delivered what you wanted or if improvements could be made.