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Posts Tagged ‘ Apple ’

The cell phone business seems so ancient these days that it’s easy to believe the sides are entrenched.

 

You’re either an iPhone person who mocks anyone who has an Android phone. Or you’re one of those Android or other non-iPhone people who derides everyone who has an iPhone.

Is it worth trying to get people to switch? Apple thinks it is.

 

In a new campaign aimed at the Android types, Apple claims that it’s better along several axes. More than that, though, the campaign wants you to believe that it’s astoundingly easy to give up your Android and come over to the bright — or, depending on your perspective, dark — side.

 

Five short ads highlight Apple’s allegedly superior offerings. One claims that the music in your world will become so much more jolly when you have an iPhone. For no obvious reason whatsoever.

 

Another says that the iPhone keeps you away from digital snoopers — and they’re very creepy-looking.

 

Then there’s speed. Apparently, iPhones are far faster than Android phones. Blindingly so, says this ad. Oh, it seems to me that all new phones start fast and then slow down as they age.

 

Another ad insists iPhone will straighten out your photos — and migrating them is so easy. Why, Apple will even send movers to your house to help you.

 

Talking of easy, the last ad doesn’t even bother with a semblance of rationality, settling for just telling you to jump because it’s simple.

 

Is this all persuasive? Not if you’re ingrained in your ways and fear that something, somewhere along the line will be lost if you change systems. This campaign is more a nag for those who already have the nagging feeling that something might be better on the other side of the fence.

 

For me, it’s like cooking with gas or electric. They both work. I’ve always been comfortable with gas. Last week, I ended up cooking on a very fancy electric stove top. It was surprisingly good. Would I get one? Probably not.

 

The gas hasn’t let me down enough yet.

 

 

 

Some Mac users may have fallen victim to a new Mac malware called Proton. Over the weekend, the malware infected unsuspecting users by hitching a ride on a trusted server that hosted downloads for HandBrake, a popular DVD ripper and media encoding program. The malware provides a backdoor for malicious activity, such as stealing stored files.

At the point of propagation, none of the 55 most widely-used antivirus services detected Proton. As of writing, the VirusTotal tracking website showed only 12 services that are capable of picking up on the new malware. Researcher Patrick Wardle has plenty of other Proton details listed on his blog.

According to Ars Technica, the folks maintaining the HandBrake download mirrors said that one of their two servers was compromised by the malware. There is a 50 percent chance for a Mac user who downloaded HandBrake between May 2 and May 6, 2017 to be infected with Proton.

 

To check for the malware on your Mac, you can do a simple checksum verification by going to the Mac terminal and type in the following:

shasum /path/to/HandBrake-1.0.7.dmg

“path/to” refers to your HandBrake installation location/filename.

Alternatively, you can type “shasum” within Terminal and drag the file to the Terminal window. If it returns:

0935a43ca90c6c419a49e4f8f1d75e68cd70b274

You’ve struck lottery. Remove the malicious malware as soon as possible. To disinfect the Mac, you can remove the following Launch Agent plist file:

fr.handbrake.activity_agent.plist

Also remove the following file from your ~/Library/RenderFiles/ location:

activity_agent.app

Then proceed to nuke your Mac reset and change all passwords.

According to Ars Technica, Proton is a general-purpose backdoor malware that’s on sale on the Dark Web for as much as US$63,000. It offers keylogging, remote access, stealing of files, and the ability to take and upload webcam or screenshot video and images.

Apple is one of the most profitable companies in the world. It generates so much profit that the latest reports indicate that its cash reserves have swollen to over US$250 billion, with the actual number of its cash reserves expected to be revealed later this week during its earnings call.

To offer some perspective, that’s more than the foreign currency reserves held by the U.K. and Canada combined. The next richest tech company is said to be Microsoft, which has US$126 billion in cash.

Another interesting tidbit is that Apple has doubled its cash hoard in just over 4.5 years. And in the last three months of 2016, it made US$3.6 million per hour.

But like many other big U.S. companies, most of this cash is parked overseas. However, President Trump’s proposal to offer a one-time tax holiday on corporate cash brought home has sparked fresh speculations that Apple could hand back more money to shareholders or make more acquisitions.

The report also says that Apple could, theoretically speaking, acquire both Tesla and Netflix and still have plenty left to spare. Apple is said to be exploring the automotive industry and has also started producing its own original TV content.

Lee Pinkowitz, a Georgetown University professor of finance, also said that Apple’s cash reserves are more than sufficient for its needs. He said, “If this a rainy-day fund, they’re saving for a millennial flood.”

If you were Apple and were allowed to bring all that cash home, what would you do with all money?

Apple’s next big thing could be a rival product of the Amazon Echo and Google Home.

According to well-known tipster Sonny Dickson, Apple is currently finalizing the designs for a product which will compete against the Amazon Echo and Google Home. He added that Apple is likely to market it as a Siri/AirPlay device which integrates “some form of Beats technology” and runs a variant of iOS. It is not known when Apple will launch this product. 

Amazon Echo and Google Home are smart speaker systems which respond to your voice commands and carry out tasks such as music playback, provide information, news, weather forecasts and control smart home devices. 

To celebrate the partnership between Apple and Nike, both have collaborated on a new limited edition Apple Watch Series 2 called the NikeLab.

The NikeLab smartwatch has a built in GPS, water resistance up to 50 meters and a brighter display making this an ideal accessory for fitness conscious users. Image source: The Verge

 

Nike also announced that the NikeLab will only be sold through the company’s website and not Apple’s. The NikeLab will also be available at NikeLab locations and in Tokyo at Apple pop-up shops.

It will be available for interested buyers starting April 27, however, pricing has not been set.

Rumors of a more affordable 9.7-inch iPad model are true after all! Apple just unveiled a new 9.7-inch tablet, simply named the iPad which replaces the iPad Air 2. 

The new iPad comes with a brighter Retina Display and is powered by an A9 chipset. In comparison, the retired iPad Air 2 model has a dimmer display and runs on an A8X chipset. Unlike the 9.7-inch iPad Pro, the new iPad is only available in three colors (Silver, Space Grey and Gold).

It will come in two storage options (32GB and 128GB) for Wi-Fi-only and cellular models. Availability remains to be announced. Here’s the pricing of the new iPad:

  • 32GB iPad (Wi-Fi)- RM1,549 
  • 32GB iPad (Wi-Fi + Cellular) – RM2,199 
  • 128GB iPad (Wi-Fi) – RM1,999
  • 128GB iPad (Wi-Fi + Cellular)  – RM2,649

 

The iPad mini 4 is now only available in one storage option (128GB). The Wi-Fi model is priced at RM2,099 while the Wi-Gi + Cellular model is priced at RM2,599.

The iPad mini 2 is no longer available for purchase.

The iPad lineup now consists of the 12.9-inch iPad Pro, the 9.7-inch iPad Pro, the iPad and the iPad mini 4. As for the rumored bezel-less iPads, 7.9-inch iPad Pro and 10.5-inch iPad Pro, we’ll just have to wait a little longer.

 

When Apple unveiled the new MacBook Pro with Touch Bar laptops, Microsoft was on stage to announce that Office for Mac is adding support for that multi-talented OLED strip.

While it isn’t really here yet, we’re inching a bit closer, as participants in the Office Insider program are now able to test the new Touch Bar controls.

 

In a nutshell, depending on the document you’re working on, Office will intelligently put the most common commands on the Touch Bar. So you’ve formatting and table editing controls in Word; style controls and recommended charts in Excel; and shape tools in PowerPoint – just to name a few.


Just like the iPhone, the Apple Watch is estimated to have taken the lion’s share of revenue in the smartwatch market last quarter.

While Strategy Analytics estimated that 5.2 million units were shipped last quarter, research firm Canalys put the figure higher at around 6 million units. This helped Apple generate over US$2.6 billion in revenue, which constituted nearly 80-percent of the total smartwatch revenue and a year-on-year growth of 12-percent.

Canalys attributed the Apple Watch’s best quarter performance to the Series 1’s lower entry price point and an increased emphasis on fitness features. Overall, Apple is estimated to have shipped 11.9 million Apple Watches for 2016 with a market share of 50-percent. The imminent launch of Android Wear 2.0 and popularity of Samsung’s Gear S3 smartwatches may erode Apple’s lead in the smartwatch market this year.

Apple has hired an industry veteran to head its Apple TV business.

According to Bloomberg, Timothy Twerdahl, former Amazon Fire TV,  joined Apple earlier this month as a vice president for product marketing. Twerdahl has a wealth of experience in internet-connected TV devices; he was the General Manager and Director of Amazon’s Fire TV business since 2013. Prior to his career at Amazon, he also worked as an executive at Netflix and later as a Vice President at Roku.

The hiring of Twerdahl allows Pete Distad, who previously held the position, to focus on Apple’s content deal efforts. These moves suggest that Apple is renewing its focus on the Apple TV business, which contributed more than 5-percent of sales in 2016.

iphone7-jetblackz

Apple is known to use different components with comparable performance for its devices as a means to diversify its supply chain. Last year, Chipworks discovered that there were two different sized A9 chipsets in the iPhone 6s with the TSMC-made chipset performing better. With the iPhone 7, Apple is once again revealed to be using two different suppliers for the modems.

Phone testing firm Cellular Insights revealed that there are two different modems found in the iPhone 7 models; one uses the Qualcomm modem while the other is using the Intel modem. The firm ran a series of tests to determine which modem would deliver better performance.

Across the board, the iPhone 7 with the Qualcomm modem had stronger connections to the mobile network and outperformed its Intel counterpart by 30 percent. If placed under real world usage conditions, this could mean faster download speeds and stronger connections in more places.

So how do you know if your iPhone 7 model has the Qualcomm or Intel modem? There are two ways to find out. Only iPhone 7 models sold in the U.S, China and Japan come with the Qualcomm modems. iPhone 7 units with model numbers A1778 and A1784 have the Intel modems. You can check for these model numbers on the back of your iPhone 7.

At the time of publication, Apple, Intel and Qualcomm declined to comment on the findings.