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Jimmy Iovine Says Apple Music Will Be 'An Entire Pop Cultural Experience' With New TV Shows

After a report by The Wall Street Journal stated that Apple is planning a push into original television series production for 2017, Apple Music executive Jimmy Iovine spoke to reporters over the weekend and explained why the company is looking to add TV to its streaming music service (via The Hollywood Reporter).

Iovine said that the company's main concern is enticing users into choosing Apple Music over competitors like Spotify and Pandora, which offer free, ad-supported tiers for users. Ultimately, Iovine and other Apple Music executives believed that another basic streaming music service with on-demand access to music at $10 a month would not be enough to keep it alive. He called the move into TV Apple's attempt to build "an entire pop cultural experience."

Key Speakers At The Apple Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC)
"At Apple Music, what we're trying to create is an entire cultural, pop cultural experience, and that happens to include audio and video," he told reporters Saturday at the Television Critics Association's winter press tour.

"If South Park walks into my office, I am not going to say you're not musicians, you know?" Iovine continued when pressed about the report. "We're going to do whatever hits popular culture smack on the nose. We're going to try."
The Hollywood Reporter suggests that the Dr. Dre-starring Vital Signs could be among the first of Apple's scripted television series to launch this year, with six episodes rolling out all at once, following the Netflix strategy. Despite all of the information known about Vital Signs since its announcement nearly a year ago last February, it's still unclear whether or not users will be able to streaming the new Apple Music TV shows on an Apple TV, or just on iOS.

Besides Vital Signs, Apple is said to be working on a reality competition series called Planet of the Apps as well as an updated version of Carpool Karaoke. For its new push into television, the company plans to create original shows comparable to HBO's Westworld and Netflix's Stranger Things.

Apple Shares New 'Pairing,' 'Siri' and 'Notes' AirPods Ads

Apple today shared three ads highlighting the newly-released AirPods on its YouTube channel. Two of the ads are focused on AirPod features, like Siri and instant pairing, and star dancer Lil Buck while the third ad is centered on showcasing the device's design.


In "Pairing," Lil Buck simply flips open the AirPods charging case and watches them instantly pair with his iPhone 7. He then proceeds to dance on the side of a car as the camera zooms in. Eventually, Apple's "Practically Magic" iPhone 7 slogan pops on screen.


In "Siri," Lil Buck double taps an AirPod to activate Siri and then asks her to play a song. She does, and the man proceeds to dance on the street before dancing on the side of a wall.


In the final ad, "Notes," the AirPods are used as musical notes on a black background playing the piano part of Marian Hill's "Down." The ad eventually cuts to a quick shot of an AirPod charging case opening and the AirPods pairing to an iPhone.

All three ads feature the song "Down" from Marian Hill. They are the first set of ads for the AirPods, although all of them also make sure to include mentions of iPhone 7. "Pairing" and "Siri" are the only two that use iPhone 7's "Practically Magic" slogan.


Apple also uploaded a new Apple Watch Series 2 ad to its YouTube channel called "Close Your Rings." The ad features three people exercising and trying to complete their daily move, exercise and stand goals, one of the more popular fitness features on the Apple Watch.

Update: Apple has uploaded a fifth AirPods video, entitled "Stroll." The new video is the longest in the AirPods ad series at one minute, and it features the same general theme as the other videos.



Related Roundup: iPhone 7
Tags: Apple ads, AirPods

Next iPhone Said to Have Even Better IP68-Rated Water Resistance

Apple's next-generation iPhone will feature IP68-rated water resistance, which would be an improvement over the IP67-certified iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus, according to The Korea Herald. Samsung's Galaxy S7 is IP68 certified, and the Galaxy S8 is naturally rumored to be as well.

iphone7waterresistance
In the IP68 rating, the "6" means the next iPhone would remain effectively dustproof, with "no ingress of dust" and "complete protection against contact," while the "8" means the device will be even more water resistant. The Galaxy S7 is able to withstand 1.5 meters of water for up to 30 minutes.

For comparison, IP67-rated devices like the iPhone 7 offer the same protection against dust but only have water damage protection against immersion between 15 centimeters and 1 meter by definition. However, while keeping your device dry is best, tests have shown the iPhone 7 is typically more water resistant than advertised.

Apple describes the iPhone 7 as "splash and water resistant," but its fine print warns that "splash, water, and dust resistance are not permanent conditions and resistance might decrease as a result of normal wear." Despite having an IP67 rating, liquid damage is still not covered under Apple's warranty.

Related Roundup: iPhone 8 (2017)
Tag: koreaherald.com

Apple vs. Samsung Lawsuit Over iPhone Design Officially Reopened

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit on Thursday reopened a longstanding patent lawsuit related to Samsung copying the design of the iPhone nearly six years ago, following an order of certiorari from the U.S. Supreme Court, according to court documents filed electronically this week.

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The court will seek to determine the exact amount Samsung owes Apple for infringing upon the iPhone's patented design, including its rectangular front face with rounded edges and grid of colorful icons on a black screen. The previous $399 million damages judgment was overturned by the Supreme Court last month.

Apple's damages were calculated based on Samsung's entire profit from the sale of its infringing Galaxy smartphones, but the Supreme Court ruled it did not have enough info to say whether the amount should be based on the total device, or rather individual components such as the front bezel or the screen.

It will now be up to the appeals court to decide. Apple last month said the lawsuit, ongoing since 2011, has always been about Samsung's "blatant copying" of its ideas, adding that it remains optimistic that the U.S. Court of Appeals will "again send a powerful signal that stealing isn't right."
The question before the Supreme Court was how to calculate the amount Samsung should pay for their copying. Our case has always been about Samsung’s blatant copying of our ideas, and that was never in dispute. We will continue to protect the years of hard work that has made iPhone the world’s most innovative and beloved product. We remain optimistic that the lower courts will again send a powerful signal that stealing isn’t right.
Calvin Klein, Dieter Rams, Norman Foster, and over 100 other top designers filed an amicus brief in support of Apple, arguing the iPhone maker is entitled to all profits Samsung has earned from infringing designs. They cited a 1949 study showing more than 99% of Americans could identify a bottle of Coca-Cola by shape alone.

Tesla-Bound Chris Lattner May Have 'Felt Constrained' by Apple's Culture of Secrecy [Update: Denied]

Earlier this week, Swift creator and LLVM co-author Chris Lattner announced he will be leaving Apple later this month—he is headed to Tesla to lead its autopilot engineering team as Vice President of Autopilot Software.

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Lattner, who oversaw Xcode among other tasks as director of Apple's Development Tools department, did not provide an explanation for his decision to leave the company, but "someone in Lattner's circle of developer friends" told Business Insider that Apple's culture of secrecy may have been a contributing factor.
"He always felt constrained at Apple in terms of what he could discuss publicly — resorting to off-the-record chats, surprise presentations, and the like," the person told us. "Similarly, I know he was constrained in recruiting and other areas. Eventually I know that can really wear people down."
Lattner, who joined Apple in 2005, did not respond to the publication's requests for comment, so the exact reason for his decision remains uncertain. He previously said the decision "wasn't made lightly," and that he plans to remain an active member of the Swift Core Team despite his departure.

What we do know is that Swift now has a large community of developers working on the programming language since it became open source in late 2015, so it is very possible that Lattner felt he was in a good position to pursue a new opportunity without jeopardizing future development of the language he created in 2010.

Swift, designed to work with Apple's Cocoa and Cocoa Touch frameworks, was developed for iOS, macOS, watchOS, tvOS, and Linux. The programming language was introduced at WWDC 2014 and is viewed as an alternative to Objective-C. Lattner said Apple's development of Swift will continue under Ted Kremenek.

Update: Lattner has shared an additional comment about Kremenek as spotted by Daring Fireball:
One thing that I don’t think is fully appreciated by the community: Ted has been one of the quiet but incredible masterminds behind Swift (and Clang, and the Clang Static Analyzer) for many years. His approach and modesty has led many to misunderstand the fact that he has actually been running the Swift team for quite some time (misattributing it to me). While I’m super happy to continue to participate in the ongoing evolution and design of Swift, I’m clearly outmatched by the members of the Apple Swift team, and by Ted’s leadership of the team. This is the time for me to graciously hand things over to folks who are far more qualified than me. Swift has an incredible future ahead of it, and I’m really thrilled to be small part of the force that helps guide its direction going forward.
Update 2: Lattner has since tweeted that his decision has "nothing to do with 'openness'," while noting the "friend" cited in the report is "either fabricated or speculating."

Tags: Swift, Tesla

Consumer Reports Reverses Course, Recommends MacBook Pro Following New Testing After Apple Bug Fix

Consumer Reports is out with an updated report on the 2016 MacBook Pro, and following retesting, the magazine is now recommending Apple's latest notebooks.

In the new test, conducted running a beta version of macOS that fixes the Safari-related bug that caused erratic battery life in the original test, all three MacBook Pro models "performed well."


The 13-inch model without a Touch Bar had an average battery life of 18.75 hours, the 13-inch model with a Touch Bar lasted for 15.25 hours on average, and the 15-inch MacBook Pro with Touch Bar had an average battery life of 17.25 hours.
Now that we've factored in the new battery-life measurements, the laptops' overall scores have risen, and all three machines now fall well within the recommended range in Consumer Reports ratings.
Consumer Reports originally denied the 2016 MacBook Pro a purchase recommendation in late December due to extreme battery life variance that didn't match up with Apple's 10 hour battery life claim.

Apple worked with Consumer Reports to figure out why the magazine encountered battery life issues, which led to the discovery of an obscure Safari caching bug. Consumer Reports used a developer setting to turn off Safari caching, triggering an "obscure and intermittent bug reloading icons" that drained excessive battery.

The bug, fixed by Apple in macOS Sierra 10.12.3 beta 3, is not one the average user will encounter as most people don't turn off the Safari caching option, but it's something done in all Consumer Reports tests to ensure uniform testing conditions. A fix for the issue will be available to the general public when macOS Sierra 10.12.3 is released, but users can get it now by signing up for Apple's beta testing program.

Each of the three 2016 MacBook Pro models, including the 13-inch MacBook Pro without Touch Bar, and the 13 and 15-inch MacBook Pro models with Touch Bars, are advertised as achieving 10 hours of battery life on a single charge when watching iTunes movies or browsing the web.

Real life Battery usage can vary significantly, however, based on factors like screen brightness and the applications being used.

Related Roundup: MacBook Pro
Tag: Consumer Reports
Buyer's Guide: MacBook Pro (Buy Now)

Court Rules Apple Can be Sued for Monopolizing iPhone App Market

appstoreA U.S. Appeals Court today ruled that App Store customers can move forward with a lawsuit claiming Apple created an illegal app monopoly because it did not allow users to purchase iPhone apps outside of the App Store, reports Reuters.

The decision reverses a 2013 ruling that dismissed the lawsuit, originally filed in 2012. The case, Pepper et al v. Apple Inc., alleges that by not letting users purchase apps from third-party sources, there was no price competition, leading to higher app prices.

When the lawsuit was originally filed, Apple requested that it be dismissed because developers, not Apple, set prices for App Store apps. Apple simply provides the platform developers use to sell apps to customers.

According to today's ruling, because iPhone users purchase the apps directly from Apple, they have the right to file a lawsuit against the company.

An attorney for the plaintiffs in the case told Reuters that the aim of the lawsuit is to allow people to shop for iPhone apps wherever they want, an outcome that's unlikely due to security implications.
But if the challenge ultimately succeeds, "the obvious solution is to compel Apple to let people shop for applications wherever they want, which would open the market and help lower prices," Mark C. Rifkin, an attorney with Wolf Haldenstein Adler Freeman & Herz representing the group of iPhone users, told Reuters in an interview. "The other alternative is for Apple to pay people damages for the higher than competitive prices they've had to pay historically because Apple has utilized its monopoly."
The Appeals Court ruling does not address the specific monopoly allegations levied at Apple and pertains only to whether or not Apple can be sued for this issue.

Tag: App Store

Apple Seeds Fourth Beta of iOS 10.2.1 to Developers and Public Beta Testers

Apple today seeded the fourth beta of an upcoming iOS 10.2.1 update to developers and public beta testers, a few days after seeding the third iOS 10.2.1 beta and a month after releasing iOS 10.2, the second major update to the iOS 10 operating system.

Registered developers can download the fourth iOS 10.2.1 beta from the Apple Developer Center or over-the-air with the proper configuration profile installed.

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It isn't yet known what features are included in iOS 10.2.1, but as a minor 10.2.x update, it appears to focus on bug fixes and performance improvements rather than major outward-facing changes. No new features were discovered in the first three iOS 10.2.1 betas, but we'll update this post if any changes are found in the fourth beta.

iOS 10.2.1 follows the release of iOS 10.2, a significant update that brought Unicode 9 emoji, a new TV app, Messages Screen Effects, Music improvements, and a whole slew of bug fixes.

Related Roundup: iOS 10

A 10.5-Inch iPad Pro Could Match the 12.9-Inch Model's Resolution and the iPad Mini's Pixel Density

Apple is rumored to be working on a new iPad Pro that adopts an edge-to-edge display, and while it's said to be somewhere around 10 inches, there are a lot of mixed rumors about the specific size of the tablet.

Studio Neat designer Dan Provost yesterday wrote a post on Medium (via Daring Fireball) making the case for a 10.5-inch iPad. His math is solid and his argument makes sense, framing all of the iPad Pro rumors in a new light.

When introducing the 12.9-inch iPad Pro in 2015, Apple marketing chief Phil Schiller explained that Apple settled on that size because the width of the tablet matched the height of the existing 9.7-inch iPad. The 12.9-inch iPad Pro, he said, was similar to having two 9.7-inch iPads side-by-side.

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A 9.7-inch iPad Pro with a 10.5-inch piece of paper over it, via Provost

Provost takes this concept and applies it to the iPad mini. The width of a 10.5-inch iPad would match the height of the iPad mini screen, and furthermore, a 10.5-inch iPad would use the same resolution as the 12.9-inch model, with the same pixel density as the iPad mini.
The math works out perfectly. This new 10.5" iPad would have the exact same resolution as the 12.9" iPad Pro (2732 x 2048), but the same pixel density of the iPad mini (326 ppi instead of 264 ppi). Crunch the numbers, do a little Pythagorean Theorem, and you end up with a screen 10.5" diagonal (10.47" to be precise, but none of Apple's stated screen sizes are exact). In terms of physcial dimensions, the width of this 10.5" screen would be exactly the same as the height of the iPad mini screen.
Existing rumors all agree that the upcoming iPad Pro will be in the neighborhood of 10 inches, but we've heard everything from 10.1 inches to 10.9 inches, suggesting Apple could be testing multiple prototypes.

KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo originally suggested the tablet would be 10.5 inches, but recently revised his statement to say that it could be anywhere from 10 inches to 10.5 inches.

Japanese site Mac Otakara has released two separate reports, one mentioning a 10.1-inch tablet and the other suggesting the display will measure in at 10.9 inches, while rumors from the Taiwanese supply chain suggest a 10.5-inch display.

While we can't yet say for certain the iPad Pro will feature a 10.5-inch display, it's the size that makes the most sense and fits well into Apple's lineup.

The upcoming iPad Pro is said to be a new flagship model that will be sold alongside the 12.9-inch iPad Pro. It's said to feature an edge-to-edge display with no Home button and a small top bezel.

Related Roundup: iPad Pro
Buyer's Guide: 12.9" iPad Pro (Caution)

Apple's Lisa Jackson Joins Federal Committee Advising on Vehicle Automation

lisa-jackson-appleLisa Jackson, Apple's vice president of environment, policy, and social initiatives, has been named as a member of the new Federal Committee on Automation. Announced by the U.S. Department of Transportation, the committee will act as an advisory panel to discuss and look into "some of the most pressing and relevant matters facing transportation today."

These matters are said to mainly include the development and deployment of automated vehicles. Additionally, the committee will act as a resource for the Department of Transportation as it continues to provide research, policy updates, and regulations on transportation in the U.S., while also helping "advance life-saving innovations."

Its members consist of "leading professionals and experts" in a multitude of fields.
“During my time at the Department, we have fostered some of the most significant technological changes to ever take place in transportation, and we did so while keeping our focus on the safety of the American people,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. ”This new automation committee will work to advance life-saving innovations while boosting our economy and making our transportation network more fair, reliable, and efficient.”
In addition to Lisa Jackson, the Federal Committee on Automation will include Gloria Boyland (FedEx VP), Robin Chase (Zipcar Co-Founder), Rachel Holt (Uber Regional General Manager), Gerry Murphy (Amazon Senior Corporate Council), and various other technology executives, university professors, and automotive industry professionals.

Each member of the committee is said to contribute the "best practices, challenges, and opportunities" they have knowledge of in regards to the future of automation in vehicles. Apple's own interest in autonomous cars was made official in a letter to federal regulators last month, and now it appears that the company will be willing to share its knowledge for the betterment of vehicle automation across the industry.
As technology develops, automation may play a larger role in a number of modes of transportation, including cars, buses, trains, planes, and UAS (drone) systems. This committee will play a critical role in sharing best practices, challenges, and opportunities in automation, and will open lines of communication so stakeholders can learn and adapt based on feedback from each other.
The full list of committee members can be found on the U.S. Department of Transportation's official website.

Related Roundup: Apple Car
Tag: Lisa Jackson

Apple Plans to Launch Original TV Shows Comparable to 'Westworld' and 'Stranger Things' By End of 2017

Apple is building a "significant" business centered around creating original, scripted television shows and possibly even movies, according to a new report by The Wall Street Journal. The content would be made available on Apple Music, falling in line with previous reports and accompanying already-announced projects for the music streaming service, including Carpool Karaoke and Vital Signs.

Apple executives have told Hollywood that the new original content will launch by the end of 2017, according to the new report. In terms of specific genres, HBO's Westworld and Netflix's Stranger Things were both used as comparisons for what Apple is aiming to produce on Apple Music. These proposed series and movies "don’t have any particular relationship to music," unlike Carpool Karaoke and Vital Signs.

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Rumors about Apple meeting with Hollywood executives to create original TV shows for Apple Music or iTunes have existed since last year, and now Apple is even looking into producing original films for the service, "though those plans are more preliminary," according to people familiar with the matter.

The company is said to have been in talks with producers over the past few months about purchasing the rights to scripted television programs, as well as seeking out marketing people to come on board and promote the new content. The move is looked at as a way for Apple to gain an edge in its competition against Spotify, rather than become a streaming contender alongside Netflix and Amazon Prime.
Because it is looking at just a handful of carefully selected shows, and potentially films, it doesn’t appear Apple is preparing to spend the hundreds of millions or even billions of dollars it would need to spend annually to become a direct competitor to Netflix Inc., Amazon.com Inc.’s Prime Video or premium cable networks.

Rather, it would escalate the arms race between Apple Music and Spotify, which both offer essentially the same catalog of tens of millions of songs, by adding other content that could distinguish Apple’s service.
Although most of Apple's plans are still steeped in secrecy, the company has reportedly told producers an advantage it hopes to offer is that it would share its viewer and demographic data on the people who watch the new shows. Netflix has remained infamously private about the specific number of viewers who watch its streaming shows, making it hard to tell what is a successful launch or not, "which has been a source of contention among some in Hollywood."

Last Summer, Eddy Cue said that Apple is "not in the business of trying to create TV shows" when asked about the future of the company and its past relationships with Hollywood, where it once spoke with network programmers to get a live-streaming TV bundle launched before ultimately shelving the plans. At the time, Cue said that Apple would "help" producers whenever it had the chance and that any TV project would serve as "complimentary to the things we're doing at Apple Music."

Apple Set to Earn $1 Trillion in Revenue From iOS Ecosystem By Middle of 2017

Apple's iOS ecosystem is on course to generate over $1 trillion in revenues for the company by the middle of this year, according to Asymco analyst Horace Dediu.

Dediu's prediction is based on several factors, starting with an expectation that Apple will have sold at least 1.2 billion iPhones in its first 10 years, earning it the rank of "most successful product of all time" and laying the foundations for the company's iPad, Apple TV, iPod touch, and Apple Watch categories.

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In its first 10 years, the iPhone will have sold at least 1.2 billion units, making it the most successful product of all time. The iPhone also enabled the iOS empire which includes the iPod touch, the iPad, the Apple Watch and Apple TV whose combined total unit sales will reach 1.75 billion units over 10 years. This total is likely to top 2 billion units by the end of 2018.
Dediu claims revenue from iOS device sales will total about $980 billion by the middle of this year, and adds to that estimate more than $100 billon in revenues from supporting services (including app content sales), putting the ecosystem's total worth above the $1 trillion mark.

The analyst notes this excludes payouts to iOS app developers of around $60 billion, with the rate of payments now reaching $20 billion per year. Those numbers would appear to tally with comments made by Apple CEO Tim Cook last August that the company has paid out more than $50 billion to developers over the lifetime of the App Store, which first launched for the iPhone in 2008.

Dediu points to the locked-in nature of Apple's ecosystem ensuring the iPhone's resilience and longevity, despite strong competition from so-called "iPhone killers" that come and go, while its robust feature set and attached services continue to earn it the market reputation as the premium smartphone to beat.

In addition, the analyst claims that Android users are now more likely to switch to iOS rather than the other way around – a trend supported by previous reports from both market analysts and Apple, including, notably, comments made in the company's Q4 2016 earnings call.

Dediu ends by predicting not another "Big Bang" for the iPhone, but a "process of continual improvement" as the smartphone enters its second decade. Indeed, the analyst expresses more excitement for its network of "ancilliary smart accessories" like the Apple Watch, the AirPods, Apple Pencil, and other possible new wearables that point toward a future where the iPhone is a hub to a mesh of personal devices. "The seamless integration of such devices is what has always set Apple apart," Dediu concludes.

Tag: Asymco