Curve, the banking and payment service which connects several accounts to one smart card, today announcedApple Pay support for all users across Europe.
For those unfamiliar with the service, Curve is a payment card that aggregates multiple payment cards via its accompanying mobile app, allowing users to make payments and withdrawals from a single card.
In other words, you can load a Mastercard or Visa debit and credit cards to the Curve app, and spend using just the Curve Mastercard.
With Apple Pay support now active, the Curve card can be added to the Wallet app just like any other card, allowing it to be used via iPhone and Apple Watch anywhere that accepts contactless payments or displays the Apple Pay logo.
"We are thrilled to announce Apple Pay is here for all European Curve customers," said Diego Rivas, Curve's Head of Product-OS. "Curve's integration with Apple Pay is a magnificent addition to Curve's unique money management features, superbly complimenting Curve's commitment to simplifying and unifying people's financial lives and enabling even more ways for customers to pay with one of the most rewarding and feature-packed personal finance products on the market," added Rivas.
Curve is available in Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and the United Kingdom (excluding Crown Dependencies Jersey, Guernsey, and the Isle of Man).
Apple and its partner film studio A24 have acquired the rights to "Boys State" a political coming-of-age documentary that examines the health of American democracy, reports The Hollywood Reporter.
Apple is said to have paid $10 million for the documentary, which was directed by Jesse Moss and Amanda McBaine. Laurene Powell Jobs, Steve Jobs' widow, served as an executive producer on the project.
Image courtesy of Sundance Film Institute
The film features an experiment in which 1,000 17-year-old boys from across Texas gather together to build a representative government from the ground up, reproducing some of democracy's worst principles and flaws.
Strap up your saddle and get ready for a wild ride. Boys State is a political coming-of-age story, examining the health of American democracy through an unusual experiment: a thousand 17-year-old boys from across the state of Texas gather together to build a representative government from the ground up. High-minded ideals collide with low-down dirty tricks as four boys of diverse backgrounds and political views navigate the challenges of organizing political parties, shaping consensus, and campaigning for the highest office at Texas Boys State--governor.
Documenting impeachment threats, dramatic debates, underdog victories, and even nefarious internet memes, filmmakers Jesse Moss and Amanda McBaine (The Overnighters, 2014 Sundance Film Festival) chart the dramatic twists and turns of these intersecting stories to reveal profound truths about our political choices and civic obligations and to remind us, ultimately, that democracy is not a spectator sport. With cunning insight that will have audiences buzzing, Boys State holds a mirror up to our divided country. This is a film for the ages in every sense of the term.
Note: Due to the political nature of the discussion regarding this topic, the discussion thread is located in our Political News forum. All forum members and site visitors are welcome to read and follow the thread, but posting is limited to forum members with at least 100 posts.
Tile today is offering two flash sales on some of its most popular Bluetooth trackers. To start, the Tile Pro 2-pack is on sale for $34.99, down from $59.99. Secondly, you can get the Tile Essentials 4-pack for $39.99, down from $69.99.
Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with Tile. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep the site running.
The Tile Pro is considered the company's high-performance tracker, with a 400ft range, the loudest ring possible among the Tile family, and a 1-year replaceable battery. Tile Pro are meant to be placed on key rings, bags, important accessories, and more, and if you ever lose your items you can track them down via the connected Tile app on your smartphone.
The Tile Essentials 4-pack includes 2 Tile Stickers, 1 Tile Mate, and 1 Tile Slim. The Tile Mate is one step down from the Tile Pro and offers a range of 200ft for item tracking. The Tile Slim is built to mimic the look of a credit card and can fit easily into your wallet, while the Tile Sticker is the company's smallest tracker and can be easily attached to most items with its sticky adhesive backing.
Tile has made a name for itself as one of the best-known Bluetooth tracking companies, but it's been fighting back against recent changes made by Apple in iOS 13. Tile claims that Apple's Bluetooth and location tracking services have hurt its business, allowing Apple to get a leg up on these services with the new "Find My" app, and causing Tile users to go through a series of buried menus in order to place Tile as the preferred Bluetooth tracker on its device.
Furthermore, Apple is rumored to launch its own dedicated "AirTags" Bluetooth tracker, which would allow Apple device users a first-party solution to keeping track of keys, bags, and equipment. It's not clear when AirTags will launch, but we've organized all of the most recent rumors and leaks on the Bluetooth trackers in our AirTags Guide.
Head to our full Deals Roundup to shop for even more discounts on Apple products and related accessories.
A new sale on the 10.2-inch iPad from 2019 has opened up this morning on Amazon, providing a round of lowest-ever prices on the cellular model of the tablet. You can get the 32GB cellular iPad for $379.99, down from $459.00, which represents a new low price on this model among the major Apple resellers online.
Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with Amazon. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep the site running.
There are also a few Wi-Fi models on sale, starting at $249.99 for the 32GB and increasing to $329.99 for the 128GB model. All of these sales can be found on Amazon, but a few models do have delayed shipping estimates due to low inventory.
This week saw an interesting variety of Apple news and rumors, ranging from rumors about upcoming iPhone and iPad releases to Apple TV+ announcements to news that Adobe Flash support will finally be removed from Safari.
One of the quirkier stories of the week was also one of the most popular, as we learned a bit more about Apple CEO Tim Cook's multi-year investment in Nebia, the eco-friendly shower head that's looking to make a bigger splash with an updated model in partnership with Moen.
Apple May Launch Backlit Smart Keyboard Alongside 2020 iPad Pros
The short version of the story is that Nebia co-founder Philip Winter managed to persuade fitness centers in Silicon Valley to run pilot tests of the eco-shower, and after installing the prototypes he would wait outside locker rooms to get feedback. That's when he met Cook.
Winter said Cook invested a "significant" amount of his own money in the eco-shower head and advised Nebia on suppliers. He also pushed the startup to prioritize user experience, design, and sustainability.
iPhone 12 Lineup Rumored to Feature All-New Navy Blue Color Option
Weinbach has accurately revealed a new iPhone color in the past. In May 2019, through his Twitter account PineLeaks, he said the successor to the iPhone XR would come in a new light green color. However, his Apple rumor track record is certainly not perfect.
A former Apple employee told Reuters that the company did not want to risk scrutiny from public officials for potentially protecting criminals, being sued for making previously accessible data out of reach, or encouraging new legislation against encryption.
Apple Likely to Drop Adobe Flash Support in Next Version of Safari
The elimination of Flash support should not heavily impact users, given that most other popular browsers have already moved away from the format. Likewise, iPhone and iPad users won't be affected because Apple's mobile operating system has never supported Flash.
Back in July 2017, Adobe announced plans to end-of-life its Flash browser plug-in. Adobe said it was ceasing development and distribution of the software at the end of 2020, so its removal from Safari was to be expected.
Refurbished models are available in Space Gray, Silver, or Gold with 64GB, 256GB, or 512GB of storage through Apple's online store in the United States. All of the models are unlocked, aka SIM-free.
Prices are discounted by $300 to $350 compared to September 2018. For example, the base model iPhone XS with 64GB of storage was $999 brand new and is now available refurbished for $699.
Each week, we publish an email newsletter like this highlighting the top Apple stories, making it a great way to get a bite-sized recap of the week hitting all of the major topics we've covered and tying together related stories for a big-picture view.
Choetech's new 61W Wall Charger uses gallium nitride technology, which allows it to be manufactured in a smaller casing than a standard power adapter. It's 50 percent smaller than the original 61W MacBook charger.
Priced at $35, the 61W power adapter is slim, portable, and perfect for use at home or travel thanks to the foldable prongs that tuck into the body of the accessory.
There's a single USB-C port on the charger that can be paired with a USB-C to USB-C cable or a USB-C to Lightning cable for charging up your Apple devices. 61W is ideal for the MacBook Air or 13-inch MacBook Pro, but it's also suitable for the more powerful 15 and 16-inch MacBook Pro models when not doing system intensive tasks.
Choetech says that the charger is equipped with a built-in "smart identification chip" that's able to identify the voltage and current required by a device, providing the right amount of power. It can charge a 13-inch MacBook Pro to full in two hours or a MacBook Air to full in 1.6 hours.
The power adapter features a design made from a fire retardant PC material with over-current, over-voltage, and short-circuit protection for safety purposes.
The cable, which is sold in a set of two, features a braided design along with reinforcing at the ends to make sure it won't fray or degrade with use, and it also cuts down on tangling. Choetech says that the cable supports data transfer speeds of 480MB/s, and that it has been tested through 5,000 bends and 30,000 plugs and unplugs.
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Best Buy has kicked off a new 3-day sale as we head into the weekend, with discounts on MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, Beats products, and iPhone cases. This sale lasts through Sunday, January 26 at 11:59 p.m. CT, and for some products you'll need to be a My Best Buy member to see the discounts.
Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with some of these vendors. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep the site running.
MacBook Air and MacBook Pro notebooks are seeing discounts that match the current best prices on select models in many cases. You can get the 128GB 2019 MacBook Air for $949.99 (down from $1,099.99), or the 512GB 16-inch MacBook Pro for $2,199.99 (down from $2,399.99).
Also included in the sale is a handful of discounts on iPhone cases, including ongoing solid deals on the iPhone 11 Smart Battery Case line. You can get this accessory for $103.99 in Black (down from $129.99), and there are also numerous discounts on Leather Cases, Silicone Cases, and Clear Cases.
The App Store is experiencing a temporary outage that started at 7:30 a.m. Pacific Time, according to Apple's System Status website. Apple's site says that there's an unspecified ongoing issue that's affecting some users.
Part of the problem appears to be linked to in-app purchases, based on a tweet from a Fortnite Twitter account, which says that in-app App Store purchases are unable to be completed at this time.
Other users have complained about not being able to make purchases from the App Store, receiving an unable to connect message.
There's no word on when the App Store problems will be resolved, but we'll update this article when the issues have been addressed.
Update: Apple is no longer listing an outage on the System Status website, suggesting the issue has been fixed.
The Powerbeats Pro have returned to their lowest-ever price of $199.95 on Amazon, down from $249.95. This sale is the same one we've been tracking for the Powerbeats Pro since last fall, offering a solid $50 discount off the original price of the wireless headphones, and it usually only lasts for a few days.
Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with Amazon. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep the site running.
Every color of the Powerbeats Pro are being discounted as well, so you can get the Black, Ivory, Moss, or Navy for $199.95 today. All models include secure-fit ear hooks, are sweat and water resistant, and support up to nine hours of listening time on a single charge.
Our full Deals Roundup has more information on the latest Apple-related sales and bargains.
Samsung is said to be working on its own answer to AirDrop, Apple's ad-hoc service that lets users transfer files among Macs and iOS devices over Wi-Fi and Bluetooth.
According to XDA Developers, "Quick Share" will work similarly to AirDrop, enabling files to be sent "instantly" between two Galaxy phones in close proximity, so long as both devices have the feature turned on.
Like AirDrop, Galaxy users will be able to restrict who can send them files (Everyone or Contacts Only). When users set Quick Share to Everyone, it's not clear if the service will present unsolicited file shares in the same way as AirDrop.
Unlike AirDrop, Quick Share is expected to have a temporary cloud-storage component that will allow users to transfer data to SmartThings connected home devices. The maximum size of these files will be up to 1GB with a total of 2GBs being sent per day.
AirDrop was introduced with iOS 7, so it might surprise some Apple users that Samsung is only getting round to finalizing its own alternative. Android used to have an NFC-based equivalent called Android Beam, but it was discontinued with Android 10. Users have had to resort to third-party alternatives like Google's Files Go app since.
China's big three mobile vendors Xiaomi, Oppo, and Vivo are also working collectively on an AirDrop-style peer-to-peer transfer protocol that is expected to launch next month.
Samsung's Quick Share service is expected to arrive with the launch of Galaxy S20+, which is slated for February 11, with the sharing service likely to come to older Samsung devices later on.
Since the launch of iOS 13 last fall, third-party access to users' background location data has reportedly declined by 68 percent, according to Location Sciences, a firm that analyzes location data for marketers (via Fast Company).
The firm also found that foreground data sharing, which occurs only while an app is open, has fallen by 24 percent.
According to a separate report by Digiday, third-party apps are now seeing opt-in rates under 50 percent for collecting location data when they're not in use.
The shortage of GPS data has been put down to Apple's recently introduction of pop-up options that let users selectively control background location tracking on the fly.
In iOS 13, iPhone and iPad users are periodically reminded about apps that are continuously tracking their location, complete with a map of those locations and options to "Change to Only While Using," "Always Allow," and "Just Once."
"As those particular options were made available to users, we do attribute that to the decrease in sharing," Jason Smith, Location Sciences' chief business officer, told Fast Company.
While the report indicates that Apple's new background location tracking options are having their intended effect, a recent report by The Wall Street Journal suggests that some developers are concerned that frequent location tracking reminders will hurt adoption of their apps.
Apple responded to the report by insisting that the changes were made to further safeguard user privacy.
"Apple has not built a business model around knowing a customer's location or the location of their device," an Apple spokesperson told WSJ, adding that Apple builds its hardware and software with privacy in mind.
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