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The Real Genius of Steve Jobs

In 1991, after his marriage, Jobs and his wife moved into a nineteen nineties style house in Palo Alto. Steve had one weakness of failing to furnish the houses he lived in. In his previous house, he only got a mattress, a table, and chairs. He was a perfectionist. It took longer, in figuring out the kind of perfect items to purchase for his house. 

In a conversation with Walter Isaacson, Job’s wife stated that in eight years they discussed furniture in theory. The discussion on the washing machine seemed more complicated than the sofa story.  Jobs had found out that European washing machines used less detergent and less water than the American counterpart.

However, they took twice as long to complete a washing cycle.  Jobs explained they were stuck on what to do as a family. They spent lots of time discussing the kind of trade-offs to make. They discussed the kind of family values they had; whether they wanted the clothes cleaned for a longer time but come out ultimately as soft. Each night after dinner, at least two hours were spent on the same discussion. Isaacson’s biography on Jobs presents him as an exhausting and complicated human being.  Parts of his life are messy. Isaacson presents those parts just as they are.

In the past recorded activities and events, it comes out clearly that jobs were a bully. At one instance, he gets his girlfriend pregnant and denies the pregnancy was his.  On another occasion, he parks in handicapped places. Jobs shouts out to the subordinates in his place of work.  Once in a restaurant, Jobs sent back food three times. Isaacson revealed of the numerous times robots had to be painted and repainted as jobs revised his color scheme.

The autobiography begins in Silicon Valley in the Apple co-founded by Jobs. Despite his dismissal from the company, upon return later, he exhibited the same arrogant behavior.  Interestingly, in his sixties, Job was hospitalized. Still, his arrogance was well displayed. He chose three out of seventy nurses to look after him. Upon sedation, while still frail, he pulled off the oxygen mask claiming that it was ugly. Also, he pointed out that the oxygen pointer on his finger was complicated and ugly.

After his death, Jobs was eulogized as an inventor and a visionary. However, Isaacson’s biography refers to him as atweaker.  Technology savvy items that were produced by other companies were created in Apple a few years later. Jobs always found many items on the market as stinking.  Isaacson stated that Steve Jobs used to speak of other people’s ideas as if they were his own. 

In a sense, Jobs was great in editorial work and not innovation. He could take on other people’s ideas and refine them to make them better. Tweaking as a skill is important for progress. The innovator writes out an original idea about an item. A tweaker refines the idea to make the item better suited in functionality. 

Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower.

Steve Jobs 

You can’t have a candid look at Apple success without bearing in mind the input of Steve Jobs. Here is a snapshot to the life of a genius behind Apple’s present-day innovations and subsequent contemporary technologies. This chapter looks at Steve jobs career, the Apple story, and an inspiring journey for prospective entrepreneurs and inventors. Born in San Francisco, Steve Paul Jobs was an American entrepreneur, inventor, and designer. At the age of 21 in 1976, he and Steve Wozniak co-founded Apple Computers. Initial funding came from Job selling his Volkswagen and Wozniak selling his cherished scientific calculator. The two are credited for inventing technologies that made machines smaller, affordable, and widely accessible to the daily consumer.

Wozniak came up with a series of user-friendly personal computers while Jobs took over the marketing role. The company could sell each Apple computer for $666.66. This single invention saw the company earn about $774,000 in revenue. 3 years down the line, the release of the Apple II model boosted company sales revenues by a whopping 700% to $139 million. Apple computers became publicly traded in 1980, with a market share valuation of $1.7 Billion by the close of trading on the first day. Jobs sought Pepsi-Cola marketing expert John Sculley to take over as CEO for Apple. This could be followed by product design flaws that resulted in recalls and consumer displeasure.

IBM surpassed Apple in sales and this later saw market competition for domination between the two ensue. To counter the tide, in 1984, Steve Jobs and team helped release Macintosh computers. This product revolutionized lifestyles at the time for its functionality, style, and creative look. However, despite a hike in sales, this invention was still not at par with IBM’s. Feeling Jobs was hurting the growth of the company, CEO Sculley sought his demotion which saw Steve Jobs leave Apple in 1985.

Jobs purchased Pixar Animation Studios from George Lucas in 1986 at an investment of $5 million which was called Graphics Group at the time. The studio merged with Walt Disney in 2006 with Steve as the main shareholder. Jobs began a new hardware and software, NeXT Inc.  The company was later bought by Apple in 1996 for $429 million, marking a turning point for Apple reinvention. Steve returned to Apple as CEO in 1997.

He set up a vibrant management team, self-imposed his annual salary at $1 million a year, and put Apple back on track. Apple embarked on an aggressive and stylish product designs that won consumer confidence once more. These technologies included the iPod, MacBook Air, iMac, and iPhone, a momentous time that saw competitors start inventing comparable products.

By 2007, Apple quarterly reports recorded $199.99 in stock value, $1.58 billion profit with $18 billion in a surplus and no debt. Fueled by record iTunes, iPhone, and iPod sales, Apple was ranked No.1 as “America’s Most Admired Companies,” and Fortune 500 companies for returns by Fortune magazine. January 2011 would remain in the annals of history; this time Steve Jobs sought a medical leave from Apple.

Seemingly a normal practice, he shocked many on August the same year when he resigned as CEO of Apple, handing over control to Tim Cook. Yet, many didn’t know this could be his last journey in the company. Steve Jobs would later succumb to death on October 5, 2011, at the age of 56 following a long battle with pancreatic cancer.

It is not possible to sum up Steve Job’s career in a single chapter. Nonetheless, the world will forever be indebted to a genius who inspired creativity and changed lives beyond himself. A few lessons stick out. Innovative products require effective marketing to sell and success comes with hard work.  Such an entrepreneurial spirit can only be for something bigger and better. 

There are some great quotes from the late famous tech entrepreneur. Jobs states that he never went back to Apple for money. At the age of 25, his net worth was already $100 million. Since he made a fortune at a young age, he decided that money was not going to ruin his life. His return to Apple was to make it worthwhile for his health and wellbeing. Although he never foresaw his dismissal from Apple, Steve asserts it is one of the best things that happened in his life. Despite his massive wealth, he got an opportunity to begin again in life. 

He states that setbacks can be used as important points for performing vital things in life. The Beatles are his business model. The Beatles are essentially made up of four partners who through constantly checking each other’s weakness keep themselves in balance.  Jobs states that in an organizational structure, the total is great than the summation of each part.  Jobs addresses creativity, he states that it is a matter of connecting people. Creative people cannot relay the exact details of how something happened. They just saw points of interconnection.

He also said technology has brought the distinct parts of the world together and would continually do so even in the future.  Just like everything else, technology has got its own downsides.  According to Jobs Television has been among the corrosive forms of technology, it has had a negative impact on the human experience. His belief in life being intelligent. As such, he asserts that things do not just take place in a random manner.  Even the Universe is made of matter and energy arranged in a particular manner. On the process of innovation and discovery in history, he states that people do not know where it will lead to. 

The common belief is that there is something bigger than any of the current events in life. Jobs commended the young people on their willingness to adapt to new things as opposed to older people who probably wonder what to do with certain items. He stated the vital need of pursuing a vocation and not just a simple way of earning a living. He states that life takes a large portion of one’s life.

Therefore, it is vital for one to find a job that satisfies them completely, to attest that it is a great work.  A great job is only what one loves. If you do not have a great job, one should not just settle. Keep on looking for it. Jobs advised people on a time of walking away from a specific venture. He states his daily example of asking whether if it is his last day on earth, he would find pleasure in doing his daily task. If not, he states that it is the best time that someone should find something else. 

The Real Genius of Steve Jobs

Analysts say iPhone sales could shrink by 17% if Apple doesn’t make a drastic change to its business (AAPL)

The fact that more people are hanging onto older iPhones for longer is good news for customers’ wallets, but bad news for Apple’s future stock price.

One of the most respected Apple analysts out there, Bernstein’s Toni Sacconaghi, has said that the iPhone is at risk of turning into the iPad, and that Apple needs to move fast to head off that problem.

The iPad has experienced major shrinkage this year partly because people are hanging onto the devices they bought for longer. Even in the third quarter, when Apple finally saw a boost in iPad sales numbers, revenue from tablets was only up 2% because people were buying the cheaper versions.

According to Sacconaghi, annual iPhone sales might follow the same trend and tank by as much as 17%. That’s extremely bad news for Apple, given the iPhone alone accounted for 62% of the company’s revenue and profits this year.

Here’s what Sacconaghi wrote, emphasis ours:

“Investors worry that the smartphone market is becoming increasingly saturated, especially at the high end, where Apple competes, and that over time, the market for iPhones will largely become a replacement market. Moreover, over time, we believe that successive generations of iPhones will likely become less differentiated (i.e. new iPhones will become “good enough” to forestall further upgrades), resulting in the elongation of replacement cycles. Such a development could materially pressure iPhone revenues; to a lesser degree, Apple has already faced these challenges in its iPad business, where annual revenues declined 37% from 2014 to 2017. We note that if the average iPhone replacement cycle were to eventually lengthen from 2.5 years (roughly where we are today) to 3 years, annual iPhone annual unit sales would ultimately fall by 17%.

The good news for Apple’s stock price is that it’s already sitting on one of the solutions: The iPhone Upgrade Programme. This essentially lets people buy the newest iPhones from Apple SIM-free with 20 monthly payments. If a new iPhone comes out, customers can upgrade halfway through the programme to the new phone.

The upshot of this model is that customers get a new iPhone every year and Apple gets guaranteed, ongoing payments that increase every year if people decided to swap to a new, more expensive phone.

Bernstein wants Apple to make more of this and become a subscription business. Sacconaghi calculated that the upgrade programme accounts for a “low single digit percentage” of annual iPhone sales.

If Apple can pull this off, Bernstein believes the firm’s stock will be “re-rated” higher, essentially meaning investors will be willing to pay more for its shares. Currently, Apple’s price to earnings (P/E) ratio is 18x. P/E ratios for software rivals are bigger, with Amazon at 289x, Alphabet at 33x and Netflix at 184x.

Here’s what he said:

“We have long believed that Apple’s transactional business model is a big reason why the stock trades where it does, and that the company should look to migrate to a subscription model going forward. As consumers become increasingly accustomed to paying monthly subscriptions, especially for key “tech utilities” (e.g. Netflix, Spotify, Microsoft Office 365), we could imagine Apple implementing a subscription plan of its own. In such a plan, customers could lease iPhones, iPads, Macs, and services such as iCloud and Apple Music for one “low” monthly fee, and have their hardware upgraded after a certain number of years. By moving to a subscription model, Apple would be able to lock in recurring revenue streams and freeze the length of replacement cycles, likely leading to a material re-rating of its stock’s multiple.”



Drake’s Hotline to Hollywood: Inside an Ambitious Push Into Film and TV

Stepping into Drake’s apartment on the 52nd floor of a Toronto high-rise, with sweeping, unobstructed views of the CN Tower and Lake Ontario in the distance, all is quiet, save for a large-screen TV playing nonstop coverage of Hurricane Irma on CNN. Though he no longer has a house in Miami, Drake is transfixed by the news. That’s just the way he approaches any subject that interests him. He dives deep, albeit on his own schedule. “This interview is kind of early for me,” he admits, though it’s presently 1:45 p.m. The night before, he started plowing through musical ideas — an instrumentation, a beat, an arrangement — well after midnight, and he didn’t stop until 10 a.m. “My wheels just start spinning faster than most people’s at that hour,” says the 31-year-old rapper-musician and former teen actor, dressed in a navy blue tracksuit and plain white Nikes. “It’s best for me to find an atmosphere that’s quiet. I don’t like a lot of people around when there’s a task at hand.”

Case in point, I find no entourage here, only longtime manager and business partner Adel “Future” Nur, 32 (not to be confused with Future, the Atlanta-born rapper). The duo is in their hometown of Toronto on this brisk September afternoon to debut their first movie as producers, The Carter Effect, a documentary about high-flying former NBA star Vince Carter, which is premiering at the Toronto Film Festival. The previous night, LeBron James swung into town to host a celebratory dinner at Drake’s pan-Asian restaurant Fring’s for a group of 30, including executives from HBO Sports and Universal Pictures and such stars as Idris Elba (who rolled in from his Molly’s Game premiere with an entourage of about 12). After heaping congratulations on his friend, James joked in a toast that they both now have “day jobs” — a reference to their budding Hollywood careers.

Drake is eager to talk about his ambitious push into film and TV, which includes teaming with Netflix to revive the critically acclaimed but short-lived British crime series Top Boy(think an across-the-pond version of The Wire). Drake and Future along with James’ SpringHill Entertainment will executive produce the series, which will go into production early next year for a 2019 debut. The pair also is shopping the Sean Menard-helmed Carter Effect, which also may land at Netflix. But the biggest indicator of Drake’s big Hollywood push is whom he is partnering with next: Steve Golin, who runs Anonymous Content (one of Hollywood’s hottest production houses and home of Spotlight and Mr. Robot), for an untitled TV series; film studio A24; and, perhaps most significantly, Apple, which has given him the go-ahead to produce whatever he chooses — at least, according to Jimmy Iovine — just as the cash-flush titan is poised to shake up the content space.

If some of the details seem vague, chalk it up to the fact that everything Drake touches becomes a news story or internet meme, with lengthy trademark battles ensuing. He once popularized the term “YOLO,” the acronym for “you only live once,” on “The Motto,” a bonus track from his 2011 album, Take Care. The term wound up on unauthorized clothing and merchandise and became a legal headache. That’s why he and Future won’t even divulge the name of their new company yet. Ditto for the specifics on their film and TV projects. Everything needs to be locked down first, including the rights to a magazine story that will serve as the basis of the Golin collaboration.

“When I get back into acting, I want to do things that make people go, ‘Wow, I didn’t expect that,’” says Drake.
Ruven Afanador
“When I get back into acting, I want to do things that make people go, ‘Wow, I didn’t expect that,’” says Drake.

Yet, despite all the monetary success, three Grammys and artistic cred, Drake possesses a self-deprecating streak, which throws me. The 15-foot white walls of his apartment are mostly bare, save for a neon art piece that says: “Less Drake, More Tupac,” from L.A. artist Patrick Martinez. “I love it,” he says of the piece that set him back a mere $6,000 but allows him to take a certain ownership of the haters, and there are many who think he’s not hard enough. “I mean, people are entitled to their opinion, but this opinion, I’d just rather it be here than anywhere else.”

If it were up to Hollywood, that art piece would simply read: “More Drake.” At a time when the film business is arguably broken, an increasingly bifurcated system of globally consumed tentpoles lacking any cultural specificity and small movies that fall into the ether, Hollywood certainly can learn something from the Drake model. “They’re really geniuses with the marketing of their music,” says Golin. “Their social media, the way they do all that, that’s very interesting to us. I’m kind of enamored of the way that they communicate and interact with their fans and their audience.” He also just finds them pleasant to be around. “There’s a lot of vain musicians at that age who are successful that I can’t deal with, but those guys are very accessible. Drake doesn’t mind when it comes to meetings and being involved; he wants to be proactive.”




Apple won’t let apps turn the iPad’s camera into a button

Earlier this month, drawing app developer Astro HQ released a video of a really clever new idea for its apps: it turned the iPad’s front camera into a button, letting you tap on the lens to activate things on screen. It was a smart way to free up screen space, but as it turns out, Apple doesn’t agree. Astro said today that its app was rejected from the App Store for violating Apple’s guidelines.

In particular, Apple pointed to a section saying that apps couldn’t “alter or disable the functions of standard switches, such as the Volume Up/Down and Ring/Silent switches, or other native user interface elements or behaviors.” While Astro’s app, Astropad Studio, wasn’t strictly altering a switch, it did make the camera stop acting like a camera, which seems to at least break the spirit of the rule.

Apple is extremely strict about what it does and does not allow into its App Store, so this rejection isn’t a huge surprise. The company uses its position as a gatekeeper to make sure that apps don’t alter the experience of using its devices, maintaining consistency in a way that’ll be clear to users. It seems hard to argue that a small tweak like this in an app meant for professional illustrators really would have had a deleterious effect on the platform, but Apple has rejected apps for less.



Apple could drop Qualcomm components in next year’s iPhones, iPads – sources

Apple Inc has designed iPhones and iPads that would drop chips supplied by Qualcomm Inc, according to two people familiar with the matter.

The change would affect iPhones released in the fall of 2018, but Apple could still change course before then, these people said. They declined to be identified because they were not authorized to discuss the matter with the media.

The dispute stems from a change in supply arrangements under which Qualcomm has stopped providing some software for Apple to test its chips in its iPhone designs, one of the people told Reuters.

The two companies are locked in a multinational legal dispute over the Qualcomm’s licensing terms to Apple.

Qualcomm told Reuters it is providing fully tested chips to Apple for iPhones. “We are committed to supporting Apple’s new devices consistent with our support of all others in the industry,” Qualcomm said in a statement.

The Wall Street Journal first reported that Apple could drop Qualcomm chips Monday.

Bernstein analyst Stacy Rasgon said Apple’s move is not totally unexpected.

Though Qualcomm has for several years supplied Apple’s modems – which help Apple’s phones connect to wireless data networks – Intel Corp has provided upward of half of Apple’s modem chips for iPhones in recent years, Rasgon said. Intel in 2015 acquired a firm that would let it replace more of Qualcomm’s chips in iPhones, Rasgon said.

Rasgon said it’s too early to say definitively whether Apple fully intends to drop Qualcomm next year because Apple can likely make multiple contingency plans for different supplier scenarios.

“Apple is big enough that they want to support multiple paths, they can do that,” Rasgon said. “Samsung (Electronics Co) did this too. A couple of years ago, Samsung designed Qualcomm out, but Qualcomm didn’t even know until it was close to time to ship” Samsung’s phones, Rasgon said.


22 Years Ago, Steve Jobs Said 1 Thing Separates People Who Achieve From Those Who Only Dream

Steve Jobs set extremely high expectations. He challenged other people to work harder, work longer, and do more — sometimes more than they thought was possible. 

Jobs was … well, let’s just say that Steve Jobs was demanding. 

But he also believed in the power of asking.

I’ve never found anybody that didn’t want to help me [Jobs says in the video below] if I asked them for help … I called up Bill Hewlett when I was 12 years old. “Hi, I’m Steve Jobs. I’m 12 years old. I’m a student in high school. I want to build a frequency counter, and I was wondering if you have any spare parts I could have.” He laughed, and he gave me the spare parts, and he gave me a job that summer at Hewlett-Packard … and I was in heaven.

I’ve never found anyone who said no or hung up the phone when I called. I just asked. And when people ask me, I try to be responsive, to pay that debt of gratitude back. 

Most people never pick up the phone and call. Most people never ask, and that’s what separates, sometimes, the people who do things from the people who just dream about them.

Granted, it’s often not easy to ask for help. Asking can make you feel insecure. Asking can make you feel vulnerable. 

But oddly enough, that’s a good thing. 

When you ask for help, without adding qualifiers or image enhancers, when you just say, “Can you help me?” several powerful things happen, especially for the other person.

You show respect. Without actually saying it, you’ve said, “You know more than I do.” You’ve said, “You can do what I can’t.” You’ve said, “You have experience [or talents or something] that I don’t have.” You’ve said, “I respect you.” 

You show trust. You show vulnerability, you admit to weakness, and you implicitly show that you trust the other person with that knowledge.

Image result for 22 Years Ago, Steve Jobs Said 1 Thing Separates People Who Achieve From Those Who Only Dream

You show you’re willing to listen. You’ve said, “You don’t have to tell me what you think I want to hear; tell me what you think I should do.” 

By showing you respect and trust other people, and by giving them the latitude to freely share their expertise or knowledge, you don’t just get the help you think you want.

You might also get the help you really need.

You get more — a lot more.

And so do other people, because they gain a true sense of satisfaction and pride that comes from being shown the respect and trust they — and everyone — deserve. Plus, you make it easier for them to ask you for help when they need it. You’ve shown it’s OK to express vulnerability, to admit a weakness, and to know when you need help.

And then, best of all, you get to say two more incredibly powerful words:

“Thank you.”

And you get to truly mean them.

And if that’s not enough to convince you: If a guy like Steve Jobs was willing to ask for help, shouldn’t we?



Steve Wozniak announces tech education platform Woz U

Steve Wozniak, one of Apple’s three original founders, has launched a new training initiative designed to get people ready for “high-paying technology” jobs.

The Woz U digital institute is initially launching as an online-only affair and promises to deliver a “new approach” to education for tech industry jobs. For now, the curriculum focuses on training for computer support specialists and software developers (.Net, JavaScript, Ruby, Java, and Python), but it will later expand into other facets of the STEM realm, including cybersecurity, mobile apps, and data science.

“Our goal is to educate and train people in employable digital skills without putting them into years of debt,” explained Wozniak in a press release. “People often are afraid to choose a technology-based career because they think they can’t do it. I know they can, and I want to show them how.”

Woz U may be confined to the online world for now, but plans are afoot to open brick-and-mortar campuses in more than 30 cities across the U.S. and globally.

Talent shortage

Online education and recruitment platforms have emerged as big business in recent times, with an anticipated “global workforce crisis” looming. According to research from Boston Consulting Group (BCG), which looked at “workforce supply-and-demand dynamics” across 25 major economies through the year 2030, there will be major labor shortages in some regions and surpluses in others. This imbalance has opened the doors to a number of initiatives that seek to plug shortages in the domestic U.S. market by scouting overseas.

Mark Zuckerberg-backed Andela, for example, announced a $40 million raise earlier this week to connect tech firms with Africa’s best software developers.

Woz U is ultimately designed to train people and get them working as quickly as possible, joining the dots between a company’s hiring efforts and people willing to put in the effort to get trained — or retrained — for tech roles. For now, the platform constitutes a mobile app that features an aptitude test and matches people with the technology career “best suited for them,” according to the institute.

The business will expand to multiple platforms over time, including Woz U Enterprise for technology companies seeking to recruit and train directly though a subscription-based curriculum or on-site programs. There will also be a K-12 Woz U Education facet aimed at school districts to encourage young people to pursue a career in the tech industry.

Later, there will be a Woz U Academy that promises one-on-one instruction, and the Woz U Accelerator program scheduled for 2019 will help hone students’ skills.



Tim Cook says the tech ‘doesn’t exist’ for Apple to make good augmented reality glasses

Apple CEO Tim Cook has been talking up augmented reality for the past year, but don’t take that to mean that Apple will launch a dedicated AR product anytime soon. In an interview with The Independent, Cook said that currently “the technology itself doesn’t exist” to make augmented reality glasses “in a quality way.” And Apple, he said, won’t ship an AR product unless it can deliver “a great experience.”

Cook identified two problems with current AR devices. Their field of view and the quality of their displays, he said, aren’t there yet. “Anything you would see on the market any time soon would not be something any of us would be satisfied with,” Cook told The Independent. “Nor do I think the vast majority of people would be satisfied.”

He’s not wrong. Current augmented reality headsets all leave something to be desired. Microsoft’s HoloLens works, but it has a limited field of view and requires a large headset. Meta’s is less expensive but similarly huge. And Google Glass (which doesn’t even totally count as augmented reality) flopped badly immediately upon release.

But even if Apple doesn’t plan on diving into dedicated AR hardware, it already made an enormous play for the augmented reality market this year — perhaps doing more than any company to date. With the release of iOS 11 last month, recent iPhones were granted the ability to perform all kinds of AR tricks using something Apple calls ARKit. It lets developers make augmented reality games and makes it easy for camera apps to implement augmented reality stickers.

That means Apple is in an early position to be at the center of a possible boom in augmented reality experiences. Cook seems to believe as much. He compared the introduction of AR features to the introduction of the App Store. “Now you couldn’t imagine your life without apps,” he said. “AR is like that. It will be that dramatic.”

Even if it won’t happen right away, there are already signs that Apple is exploring dedicated AR hardware. The company has a patent application that envisions augmented reality glasses, and Apple reportedly has a team of over 1,000 people working on AR. In typical Apple fashion, Cook told The Independent that Apple has no interest in rushing into the market just to get a head start. “We don’t give a rat’s about being first,” he said. “We want to be the best.”



Here’s the crucial lesson Steve Jobs taught Apple’s Jony Ive about focus

Jony Ive, the chief design officer at Apple, is the man Apple CEO Steve Jobs once called his “spiritual partner at Apple,” and on Friday, he talked with The New Yorker‘s David Remnick about the creative process and focus Jobs instilled in him for the magazine’s TechFest.

How to stay focused like Steve Jobs

The partnership between Ive and Jobs famously led to the ubiquitous aesthetically-pleasing designs of Apple products — including the iMac, MacBook, iPod, iPhone, and iPad — that millions of us hold in our hands and use every day. Remnick compared the synergy that led to these innovations as “Lennon-McCartney” breakthroughs. Ive said that when he and Jobs were clicking on all cylinders they were able to communicate their ideas in an “almost pre-verbal way.”

Jobs and Ive were not just business partners, but also close friends who ate lunch and vacationed together. And as friends and business partners, Jobs gave Ive blunt advice: If Ive wanted to work at his best, he would need to stay focused at all costs.

“I remember sort of early on when we were working, and he was saying that, ‘Jony, you have to understand there are measures of focus, and one of them is how often you say no,’” Ive said Jobs told him.

The power of refusal

Jobs believed in the power of refusal so much that he would ask Ive to tell him how many times Ive had said “no” during the day.

It was an “incredibly patronizing deal,” Ive admits, but he also acknowledges that this kind of tunnel-vision focus works.

“The art of focus is even if it is something you care passionately about, focus means ignoring it, putting it to the side. And often, it’s at real cost. And [Jobs] was remarkable at that,” Ive said.  “It takes so much effort and is exhausting to sustain, but all of the good things we’ve done have required that sort of focus.”

Setting your focus

To organize your life, you’ll need to prioritize what matters to you and clear away the clutter.

You may need to make big sacrifices to achieve this level of Steve Jobs-focus, but your reward may be having an idea as a great as an iPhone.



Apple starts collecting browsing data in Safari using its differential privacy tech

Today’s public release of macOS High Sierra brings with it some key updates to Safari — including the ability to disable cross-site cookie tracking and turn off autoplaying ads. Arriving alongside those features is a less publicized new addition to Apple’s proprietary browser: data collection. The company is using its newly implemented differential privacy technology to gather information from user habits that will help it identify problematic websites.

This form of data collection is the first of its kind for Safari, aimed at identifying sites that use excessive power and crash the browser by monopolizing too much memory. Apple is also documenting the popularity of these problematic domains, in order to prioritize which sites it addresses first.

Differential privacy is a method for collecting large swaths of information without grabbing any personally identifying data in the process, so none of the information can be traced back to the user. The concept dates back to academic research, algorithmically obscuring user data, while bulk collecting information, in order to identify larger trends.


As SVP Craig Federighi put it in a WWDC keynote, “[O]ne of the important tools in making software more intelligent is to spot patterns in how multiple users are using their devices.”

Apple has already used differential privacy for some relatively low-level applications, including predictive text in keyboards, emoji usage and search predictions. As such, the technology is already part of the company’s Device Analytics program.


It’s an opt-in box that you can choose to tick, depending on whether you want to send that information to Apple, much like you would with the company’s crash reporting. As such, Apple won’t be prompting users with an additional sign up or notification marking the new data collection in Safari.


Apple starts collecting browsing data in Safari using its differential privacy tech

This Simple Change on the Apple iPhone Could Save Countless Lives on the Road

There’s nothing quite like “borrowing” an idea from someone else in the tech world. It’s all about how you implement the idea, how you make sure the idea is still general enough that it is not outright theft, and then how your user base reacts to the change.

That’s what makes a new feature on the iPhone, called Do Not Disturb While Driving, so interesting. It’s something Android users have enjoyed (or been annoyed by) for a while. On the iPhone, it means your phone is basically locked. When you use the mode and pick up your phone, you’ll see a screen that says your phone is disabled.

When you get a message or receive a phone call, the iPhone can then send a message back that you’re driving. To enable the feature on any iPhone that runs iOS 11, just head to Settings and enable the Do Not Disturb While Driving feature. You can set it to activate automatically when the iPhone senses you are driving or manually when you decide to use it. (A chip inside the phone can sense movement that could only be a car.)


Over the last week, I’ve use the feature many times. Well, to be more specific–I’ve stopped after driving to sit idle in a parking lot or the curb and picked up my phone, only to realize that it was impossible for me to check for a text or glance at my iTunes playlist.

You can go through a few settings to disable it of course, but it’s really a reminder to stay safe, remain vigilant, and keep your attention on the road. And here’s the amazing part. It worked. I refrained from glancing at the phone, even though it was safe to do so, and I decided to just wait until I was out of the vehicle entirely.

We know distracted driving is an issue, because accidents and fatalities on the road have risen slightly in the last year or two. It’s a problem because your brain goes into a strange blackout mode where all you see is the screen and nothing else–no pedestrians, no other cars, no roadside objects. It’s a good thing the brain does this, because it allows us to focus. It’s a bad thing when you are driving 70 miles-per-hour in heavy traffic.

For Android users, the feature has been available since last year at least. I recall using it with a Google Pixel phone connected using Android Auto to several makes and models, including a nice sports sedan with a lot of horsepower. The feature also blocks messages and calls. There’s no way to prove Apple noticed this feature and added it, but the Pixel essentially does the same thing–sensing the car is moving and blocking calls.

You can use a custom message on the Phone to send back to people to let them know you are driving, and you can select whether all calls are blocked or just those not in your contacts or favorites. Anyone can use a trigger word (“urgent”) to contact you even if you are Do Not Disturb mode.



Here’s the new Apple Watch software

In Apple’s big product show today in Cupertino at the new Steve Jobs Theater, Apple COO Jeff Williams unveiled Watch OS 4, which is largely focused on health and fitness. The new OS features a redesigned workout app, high intensity interval training, enhanced swim tracking smart activity coaching, GymKit to pair with machines at the gym, a revamped heart rate monitor and new music experience.

With Watch OS 4, you’ll be able to see your heart rate right on your watch face. And when you launch the app, you’ll see your resting heart rate and recovery heart rate, which tells you how quickly your heart rate drops after a workout.


When you’re not active, your Apple Watch will be able to notify you if your heart rate is elevated. The new OS can also detect arrhythmias.

With OS 4, person-to-person payments will be possible via ApplePay. which means you can send and request money right from the Messages app on your watch. The new software will be available to everyone on September 19.


Here’s the new Apple Watch software

Steve Jobs introduces Original iPad – Apple Special Event (2010)

Apple and Amazon reportedly pursuing James Bond film rights

A new report from The Hollywood Reporter claims that Apple and Amazon are vying for the distribution rights for the next Bond films, right alongside current leading bidder Warner Bros. This represents a potentially huge change in the way Hollywood distributes movies, of course, and puts Amazon and Apple in the same competitive bucket as Sony, Universal and Fox, all of which have been talking to MGM following the expiration of its distribution deal with Sony after Spectre‘s 2015 release.

THR’s sources say that both Amazon and Apple are offering as much, if not more than the traditional studios for the Bond rights. It claims Apple’s new film and TV executives Zack Van Amburg and Jamie Erlicht are leading the charge on the company’s behalf, and that the tech giant might be looking to strike an ever broader deal, including potential TV rights.


Apple was said to be investing $1 billion in original content initiatives next year, but the Bond franchise rights could be worth as much as $2 billion to $5 billion, per the report. It could set up the creation of a broader cinematic universe behind the character, similar to those being established by Disney for Marvel’s superheroes and the Star Wars saga.


This could still very easily result in no deal, or a different arrangement that sees film rights to go a traditional studio and TV or other content development licensing agreements struck with the tech companies int he running. Still, it’s an interesting window into what direction we might see streaming services take as they compete for creative real estate and audience eyeballs.


Apple and Amazon reportedly pursuing James Bond franchise rights

IPhone 8 face scanner will unlock the phone almost instantly

The 3-D face sensor on the iPhone 8 will allow a user to unlock the device in “a few hundred milliseconds,” or almost instantly, Bloomberg said.

Apple’s iPhone 8, expected to launch this fall, isn’t the first phone to use this sort of feature. Samsung’s Galaxy S8 also features a face scanner that quickly unlocks the phone. It also packs an iris scanner, which Samsung has said is more secure. Samsung’s technology, however, can be tricked with a photo.


The iPhone 8 is said to be full of new features ranging from an edge-to-edge OLED display that’s more colorful and brighter than previous screens, wireless charging and more. It’s expected to launch in September in limited quantities.




Read Apple CEO’s email denouncing white supremacism in Charlottesville

Apple will make $2 million of donations to civil rights groups working to fight white supremacism such as that on display in Charlottesville, and it will furthermore match employee donations to similar causes on a two-for-one basis. There will soon also be an option added to iTunes for Apple users to contribute to supporting one of Apple’s chosen organizations, the Southern Poverty Law Center. In an apparently related move, Apple Pay has ceased accepting payments on websites selling white supremacist and Nazi gear.

The email in full:


Like so many of you, equality is at the core of my beliefs and values. The events of the past several days have been deeply troubling for me, and I’ve heard from many people at Apple who are saddened, outraged or confused.

What occurred in Charlottesville has no place in our country. Hate is a cancer, and left unchecked it destroys everything in its path. Its scars last generations. History has taught us this time and time again, both in the United States and countries around the world.

We must not witness or permit such hate and bigotry in our country, and we must be unequivocal about it. This is not about the left or the right, conservative or liberal. It is about human decency and morality. I disagree with the president and others who believe that there is a moral equivalence between white supremacists and Nazis, and those who oppose them by standing up for human rights. Equating the two runs counter to our ideals as Americans.

Regardless of your political views, we must all stand together on this one point — that we are all equal. As a company, through our actions, our products and our voice, we will always work to ensure that everyone is treated equally and with respect.

I believe Apple has led by example, and we’re going to keep doing that. We have always welcomed people from every walk of life to our stores around the world and showed them that Apple is inclusive of everyone. We empower people to share their views and express themselves through our products.

In the wake of the tragic and repulsive events in Charlottesville, we are stepping up to help organizations who work to rid our country of hate. Apple will be making contributions of $1 million each to the Southern Poverty Law Center and the Anti-Defamation League. We will also match two-for-one our employees’ donations to these and several other human rights groups, between now and September 30.

In the coming days, iTunes will offer users an easy way to join us in directly supporting the work of the SPLC.

Dr. Martin Luther King said, “Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about the things that matter.” So, we will continue to speak up. These have been dark days, but I remain as optimistic as ever that the future is bright. Apple can and will play an important role in bringing about positive change.





China Yikatong launched an app for ‘most’ Android devices but not Apple

Apple continues to be locked out of China’s massive mobile payments space. The latest reminder came this week when Beijing’s transportation system opened up to smartphone payments… via an Android app.

Already Tencent’s WeChat Pay and Alibaba’s Alipay services dominate China’s mobile payment space, which is estimated to have processed $3 trillion last year, but now Apple has missed out being part of what is sure to be a very convenient usage case.

The Financial Times reports that Beijing’s public transport payments company Yikatong launched an app for ‘most’ Android devices that allows commutes to ditch their physical card and pay fares via their phone.

Apple isn’t included most likely because its operating system doesn’t support third party payments like Yikatong, instead favoring its own Apple Pay. But it is also worth noting that iOS accounts for just 16 percent of all smartphones in China, according to data from Kantar as of March. Though the figure in urban areas is likely to skew in Apple’s favor, it doesn’t dominate which may be another factor.


It’s unclear whether potential iPhone owners would go to the lengths of buying an Android device just to use the transportation app, but it’s another piece of anecdotal evidence that shows the difficulty Apple is up against in China, where revenue was down 10 percent year-on-year in its most recent quarter of business.

Apple recently removed the popular tip feature from chat app WeChat, a move that some believe might tempt its users to move over to Android where it continues to exist. While WeChat itself, far and away the most popular Chinese app, has ‘leveled the playing field’ in some ways by standardizing parts of the mobile experience for users whether they are on iOS or Android, the latter of which is often (far) cheaper.

That said, analysts are optimistic that the forthcoming next iPhone — which has been heavily linked with a range of new features — can sell well in China if Apple is able to differentiate it from previous models. Time will tell, but missing out on wide deployments like Chinese public transport remains a blow.


Beijing’s public transport system gets an app for paying fares — but Apple isn’t invited

Apple will pay $506 million to the University of Wisconsin for patent infringement

Apple has been ordered to pay more than $500 million in a long-fought patent dispute against the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s patent-licensing division.

U.S. District Court Judge William Conley on Tuesday ruled that Apple should pay $506 million in damages for allegedly infringing a patent owned by the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation (WARF). The judge, whose ruling was earlier reported on by Reuters, added $272 million to a previous $234 million damages tally because the iPhone maker continued to infringe the patent, according to the judge.


The patent is question relates to a technology called a “predictor circuit.” The patent, which was awarded to the University in 1998, describes how the circuit can improve a processor’s performance inside a device. The “predictor” element to the technology allows the processor to anticipate a user’s commands to the system before they’re made, so it can respond more quickly.

WARF sued Apple (AAPL, +0.47%) in 2014, alleging the company used the technology in some of its iPhones. In 2015, a jury awarded WARF $234 million in damages after jurors determined Apple was violating the University’s patent. Apple, which denied the allegations, has said that the patent is invalid and shouldn’t have been awarded. However, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has rebuffed the iPhone maker’s request to review the patent’s validity.

According to Reuters, Judge Conley added $272 million to the damages award after determining that Apple continued to use the technology in iPhones through December 2016.

Apple did not respond to a Fortune request for comment on the judge’s decision.



Apple aims to get an iPad in the hands of every hospital patient

Apple has made great strides in health in the last few years and if it gets its way, there will be an iPad in the hands of every hospital patient.

It’s already started with a smattering of hospitals around the U.S. including Jacobs Medical Center at UC San Diego, MetroSouth Medical Center in Chicago and about a year ago at Cedars-Sinai in Los Angeles.

Earlier this week, I went down to L.A. to take a tour of Cedars-Sinai‘s pilot program allowing patients direct access to their vitals, care team and educational tools through iPads.

Doctors are already adept at using mobile devices and many have been using iPads in their practices for a number of years now, but allowing patient’s access to their own information is still a novel idea in the medical world. Cedars has been somewhat ahead of the curve with the creation of its EHR software My CS-Link, which allows patients to look up their information online, including notes from their doctor.

However, without the iPad, doctors and nurses have to follow a paper trail and then write up duplicate information on a white board often found on the back wall in the patient’s room. Mistakes can happen and, as Cedars-Sinai doctor Shaun Miller told me, the staff often run out of room to write, leading to confusion or a lack of information for the patient.


Cedars uses Epic’s MyChart software to record vitals and other info on roughly 50 iPads in its heart failure unit where patients often have to stay for an extended period of time. One patient, 32-year-old Awad Lsallum, traveled all the way from Saudi Arabia in hopes of receiving a new heart. To be honest Lsallum did not seem that impressed with the device. He’d already been at Cedars for a total of 40 days and said he gave the iPad back after a while. But he did say it was “comforting” to have the iPad so he “knows what’s going on.”


The program also benefits the care team. Michelle Williams, a registered nurse at Cedars told TechCrunch the program made it easier for nurses. The nursing staff often get stuck with duplicate work requiring both educating patients on care and checking to see if they have all the necessary information. However, the program offers educational videos on the iPad and a handy way for patients to see all their information at the same time.

In another section of the hospital, new parents are utilizing unmodified iPads to FaceTime with their newborns who may be sick or premature. These babies need to be kept isolated from the outside world and the germs that come with it so new parents aren’t usually able to see their baby for a few days after they are born. But, with what the nurses refer to as BabyTime (FaceTime for babies), parents can interact virtually with their little one while they wait.


Apple aims to get an iPad in the hands of every hospital patient

You can now pay for audiobooks and e-books from iBooks via Paypal

Apple has just made purchasing digital content from iBooks a little bit easier for people who do not have a credit card. The company has just incorporated Paypal for users in Australia, Austria, Canada, France, Germany, Israel, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain and the United States.

Until now, Apple has only allowed users to buy digital content with either a credit card or gift card credit. The addition of PayPal will no doubt encourage even more users to make purchases using Apple’s services as it rolls out worldwide.


Once users have updated their account settings for the above services, all future purchases made with the customer’s Apple ID will be automatically charged to their PayPal account. This includes purchases of apps, music, movies, TV shows, and books, as well as Apple Music subscriptions and iCloud storage. It will also allow you to make purchases with the Apple TV and iWatch.

This is bigger news than most people realize. Shares of PayPal have traded as low as $36.28 over the past 52-weeks. It closed on Tuesday at $54.94.



Apple is still selling very old and expensive computers – these are the ones you shouldn’t buy

Apple is still selling you computers with 2013 specs for 2017 price tags.

While these computers will work fine, they have outdated specs that don’t warrant their high price tags. You should steer your wallet well clear of them.  

I’ve listed the Apple computers you shouldn’t touch with a 10-foot pole, and added suggestions of computers you should consider instead. 

Some of these computers are part of Apple’s recent back-to-school promotion, where you can get a free pair of $300 Beats Solo3 Wireless headphones. Yet, even with the free pair of headphones, some computers aren’t worth your time or money.

Check them out:

View As: One Page Slides


MacBook Air

MacBook Air


Apple recently refreshed the MacBook Air in June 2017, but the refresh was minimal and it’s still not a great deal. 

For $1,000, the MacBook Air display is old and dreary compared to the $1,200 MacBook Pro with Apple’s gorgeous Retina display. More specifically, the MacBook Air’s display has a 900p resolution, which is positively blurry by today’s standards. The MacBook Pro’s Retina display, on the other hand, has a 1600p resolution display that’s far sharper, and it has vastly superior color output.

The MacBook Air’s refresh included an updated processor, but that processor is from Intel’s 5th generation chip line from 2015. The problem here is that Intel is on its 7th generation of processors right now, which you’ll find in the latest MacBook Pro. Intel’s 5th generation of processor is very good, but it’s still relatively old by tech standards, and thus not very future-proof.

What you should buy instead of the MacBook Air.

What you should buy instead of the MacBook Air.


Overall, you’re much better off spending the extra $200 on the base model of the MacBook Pro than you are buying a MacBook Air. The new MacBook Pros are almost as light as the MacBook Air, and they’re actually thinner at both computers’ thickest points.

If you want something even lighter and slimmer than than the MacBook Pro, you could go for the MacBook. They’re a little more expensive-per-performance than the MacBook Pros, but they are beautiful and incredibly light and slim. 


Mac Mini

Mac Mini


The Mac Mini costs between $500 and $1,000, depending on the specs, and it was last refreshed way back in 2014. 

All Mac Mini models run on Intel’s 4th generation processors, which you won’t find on any new computers for the same price.

For example, let’s take the $500 base Mac Mini with a 4th-generation Core i5 processor, 4GB of DDR3 RAM, and 500GB of storage, and compare it to a $500 Dell Inspiron. The Dell has a faster 7th-generation Core i5 processor, 8GB of the latest and faster DDR4 RAM, and one terabyte (1,000GB) of storage. The Mac Mini is a poor deal in comparison.

What you should buy instead of the Mac Mini

What you should buy instead of the Mac Mini


If you really want a desktop computer that stays on a desk, go for the iMac. They start at $1,100, and they’re a much, much better deal than any Mac Mini. They also come with a gorgeous 4K display.

Otherwise, if you already have a monitor you like to use, you could go for a MacBook Pro and hook it up to your monitor. 

Alternatively, you could stray away from the Apple ecosystem and go for a cheaper Windows PC, like the Dell Inspiron I mentioned above. 


Mac Pro

Mac Pro

Getty Images/Justin Sullivan

Apple’s Mac Pro computers are designed with professional video and photo editors in mind, so they shouldn’t really be considered for most people who want a machine for general work, web browsing, and Netflix streaming. 

Still, professionals should take note that the current Mac Pro is an old computer that was last refreshed in 2013, and it comes with a 2017 price tag. 

Since 2013, Intel has released its second generation of Xeon processors; the Mac Pro runs on the first generation. The Mac Pro also has the older DDR3 standard of RAM, whereas newer professional workstations come with the latest and faster DDR4 standard. The Mac Pro’s graphics cards are also ancient.

For the price, Apple’s Mac Pro computers are simply not worth it for professional customers. 


What should you buy instead of the Mac Pro?

What should you buy instead of the Mac Pro?


If you’re looking to stay in the Apple ecosystem, you’d do well to wait for the new iMac Prothat’s coming out in December. It’ll be more expensive, but that’s because it comes with a 5K display and the latest and greatest specs. It will even be able to power virtual- and augmented- reality experiences, if that’s your thing.



Apple Wants Face Scanning to Replace Touch ID

Apple is keen to replace the iPhone’s fingerprint scanning system with more secure 3-D facial-recognition technology, according to Bloomberg.

The company’s goal to do away with Touch ID, its fingerprint identity sensor that has been used to unlock iPhones models launched since 2013, is expected to occur in time for the launch of the iPhone 8, due to be released later this year. People familiar with the product’s development claim that the new facial-recognition technology will feature a 3-D sensor capable of scanning faces and unlocking iPhones within a few hundred milliseconds. 

The sensor will also be used to authenticate payments and launch secure apps and has reportedly been designed so that users don’t have to hold the device close to their face — laying the phone flat on a table is sufficient enough to gain access. Bloomberg’s sources add that Apple’s facial-recognition technology, which is still in development and may not be ready in time to feature on the new iPhone, is more secure than Touch ID as it takes in more data points.

Apple is also said to be in process of testing eye-scanning technology to supplement its new system. By using 3-D sensors, it hopes to avoid running into the same issues that dogged Samsung (SSNLF). The South Korean company’s Galaxy G8 smartphone featured iris scanners that could be breached by placing a printed photo copy of the user’s eyes in front of it. 

Aside from introducing a face-unlocking feature, Apple’s new iPhone is set to include an artificial intelligence chip. Called the Apple Neural Engine, the chip’s ability to handle tasks, such as image recognition and typing suggestions, is expected to improve battery life. The iPhone 8 will also feature screens capable of displaying content at a higher frame rate.

The addition of these complex features has led to concerns that the iPhone 8’s launch date might be delayed and hindered by costly production issues. Some analysts are also concerned that the expected retail price of $1,000 may put consumers off buying it.

Read more: Apple Wants Face Scanning to Replace Touch ID | Investopedia http://www.investopedia.com/news/apple-wants-face-scanning-replace-touch-id/#ixzz4lxPcIXKU

Apple is hiring a Siri Event Maven to make it smarter about cultural events

Apple is looking to make its Siri assistant a little smarter when it comes to significant, upcoming events. The company has posted a job listing for a position titled “Siri Event Maven,” and the person who eventually fills that role will be responsible for providing “strategic awareness of cultural happenings in the collective zeitgeist.” 9to5Mac first reported on the posting.


Siri is already relatively competent at answering questions around major events — like the classic “What time is the Super Bowl?” — but clearly Apple wants to get a little more comprehensive and will task the future hire with finding events that Siri doesn’t already know about. Apple says “scouring social media and the web” is one way to assemble that list, but applicants should have a strong sense of noteworthy goings-on in the world all on their own. The job description makes that clear:

Do you bring “Wookie Cookies” to the office for “May The Forth Be With You”? Is your favorite holiday “∏ Day” or “Talk like a Pirate Day”? We’re looking for someone to help us keep Siri up to date on all the various events happening around the world.

And the leading qualification for this job is:

Must consider yourself a maven, trend-setter or Czar of cool. Non-negotiable. 🙂


Yes, Apple included the smiley face. The job listing doesn’t really specify what type of events that the company wants Siri to get better at recognizing. Are we talking TV and film? Popular concerts? Maybe Apple wants to help you get a better handle on the constant rotation of “national _____ day” celebrations that pop up across social media.


But as Siri expands to yet another device with the upcoming HomePod speaker — where it’s certain to face direct comparisons with Amazon’s Echo and Google Home — it’s in Apple’s best interest to shore up the assistant’s knowledge of everything hip to avoid any embarrassing misses.



Apple’s AR is closer to reality than Google’s

Apple has often been accused of acting like it invented things that others have been doing for years. That complaint is not without merit, however Apple can lay claim to transforming existing things into mainstream successes, which takes no small amount of invention in its own right. Fingerprint authentication and contactless payments are just two recent examples, having both existed in Japan and on niche devices for over a decade before Apple raised them to global prominence with the iPhone.


Next up on Apple’s agenda is augmented reality, the act of superimposing digital data and visuals atop a live video feed of your surroundings — something that Google, Microsoft, and many others have been experimenting with for a long time. Apple is far from being able to claim it invented AR, but its new ARKit in iOS 11 is already showing signs to suggest that Apple will help bring AR into the mainstream faster and better than anyone else.

The chronic problem with augmented reality has always been one of practicality. You could have the most basic forms of AR on your regular phone, as provided by apps like Layar, which has been around since 2009, but those have never been particularly compelling. Or you could have more sophisticated and appealing augmentations, as presented by Google’s Tango project, but you’d need a big fat phablet to lug around to make them happen. Apple’s difference is to combine the convenience of your daily phone with the appeal of advanced AR.

Looking at this distance-measuring app, it seems so simple and obvious. Of course your super-powered, multi-core phone should be smart enough to measure out basic distances, and there have indeed been many wonky apps trying to do that in the past. But measuring with AR, as already shown off by Google Tango phones, allows you a much more intuitive method for doing it. Having the phone actually aware of the three-dimensional space in its view allows for precise measurements, which can be represented with a neat hologram of a measuring tape. Apple’s advantage in the contest for doing this best is simple: while Google Tango demands special hardware, ARKit requires only that you have a recent iOS device. At WWDC earlier this month, Craig Federighi described ARKit as “the largest AR platform in the world,” and he was right.



Apple’s AR will immediately reach millions of people who already have the requisite hardware. And while it looks to be functionally as flexible and capable as Google’s Tango (check out some early examples of fanciful experiments with ARKit), its broader audience makes it much more enticing for serious developers to invest their time and money into. Google’s Tango is about the future whereas Apple’s ARKit is about the present.

Considering how little time it took to develop two convincingly accurate AR measuring apps with the iOS 11 beta, and reading the comments from their makers, Apple also appears to have an advantage in the ease of development with ARKit. It’s exciting to think that there are still three months before the release of the next iPhone and the accompanying finalization of iOS 11, by which time Apple’s big-budget app developer partners are likely to have a deluge of AR-enabled apps for people to play with. That’s how stuff goes mainstream: as a big wave of change that touches everyone from casual Pokémon Go players to serious home DIY geeks figuring out how to arrange their living room furniture.

For the people who don’t care about incremental changes in phone specs or design, the differentiator between devices has always been in the unique things that each one can do — or, failing that, the convenience and ease of use of common features. Apple’s iPhone is more convenient than Google’s Project Tango devices and with iOS 11 it’ll have much better AR capabilities than its nearest premium Android rivals. So if we’re looking for the AR innovator that will take the technology into the mainstream, Apple once again looks like the likeliest suspect.



Apple may eventually launch ‘iGlass’ smart glasses for augmented reality

Apple may leverage augmented reality on the iPhone to help pave the way for a future smart glasses product, UBS said in a note to investors Tuesday.

Apple recently launched its ARKit developer tools, which will allow its partners to build new augmented reality applications for millions of iPhones already in the hands of consumers. It will give Apple an overnight leg up on companies like Google that are participating in the space on a much smaller scale.

Apple hasn’t participated in the smart glasses space yet, but the idea is that a user will be able to wear a special pair of glasses that overlays computer images over the real world. You might learn more about a restaurant, perhaps view its menu, by standing in front of it, for example.


Right now, companies like Apple and Google would be forced to create bulky glasses that wouldn’t be feasible or comfortable to wear. UBS believes Apple could use AR-ready iPhones to power the experience.

“Advanced sensors and camera capabilities will enhance the iPhone; eventually there could be independent hardware offerings, perhaps iGlass,” UBS analyst Steven Milunovich said. “We can imagine a pair of glasses with quintessential Apple design (iGlass), which enable a Hololens-type experience,” the company said, referring to Microsoft’s bulky alternative.


“However, the amount of compute power and sensors required likely pose a serious design challenge. If Apple could find a way to send massive amounts of data from the eyeglasses to the iPhone where the bulk of the compute would occur, the eyewear could have a more attractive design. The issue then becomes how to transfer massive amounts of complex data between devices quickly.”

Milunovich laid out 10 AR use cases ranging from games and entertainment to home improvement and health care/medical diagnostics. It said AR will help Apple retain iPhone users.




Hackers are selling Mac ransomware that could cause ‘real damage’

The idea that Mac computers are more secure than Windows machines might be a myth.

Security researchers have found two types of malicious software which apparently target Macs for the first time.

Ransomware — malicious software that encrypts your data and then demands payment for decryption — is more commonly a problem for Windows users, but it’s also recently been a growing problem for Macs.

What’s still less common on Macs is ransomware-as-a-service (RaaS) schemes.

These are essentially affiliate models, where attackers use someone else’s ransomware package to launch an attack. They then hand over a cut to the ransomware author. The advantage is that you don’t need to be particularly tech-savvy to launch an attack by using someone else’s code. Attackers haven’t bothered targeting Macs, because most people use Windows.

It looks like that’s changing.

Research firm Fortinet found a RaaS programme called MacRansom advertised on the dark net, and while the programme doesn’t sound all that sophisticated, could still do “real damage.” We first saw the news on the BBC.

Fortinet’s researchers contacted MacRansom’s creators directly and received a message back. The creators claimed to be engineers for Yahoo and Facebook and that they were making their malware available “for free” because more people were buying Macs.

“Unlike most hackers on the darknet, we are professional developers with extensive experience in software development and vast interest in surveillance,” the anonymous authors wrote.

These are probably tall claims. Fortinet analysed MacRansom and described it as “far inferior” to equivalent programmes that target Windows machines, but said it could still cause mayhem.

“It doesn’t fail to encrypt victim’s files or prevent access to important files, thereby causing real damage,” the company wrote.

Fortinet advised Mac users to regularly backup their machines and be suspicious when opening unusual files.

Another set of researchers at AlienVault discovered more malware created by the MacRansom authors — this time malicious software that reads your files.

MacSpy was advertised similarly to MacRansom, and claimed to hoover up victims’ files, offer access to social media accounts, and disguise itself as a legitimate file.

AlienVault’s researchers said as more people buy Macs, there’ll be more instances of targeted malware.

They wrote: “While this piece of Mac malware may not be the most stealthy program, it is feature rich and it goes to show that as OS X continues to grow in market share and we can expect malware authors to invest greater amounts of time in producing malware for this platform.” According to Netmarketshare figures, more than 90% of the world’s computers run Windows. The second most popular operating system is Mac OS at 6%.



Tim Cook confirms that Apple is working on software for self-driving cars

For the first time, Apple CEO Tim Cook has confirmed that the iPhone-maker is building the technology to power self-driving cars. In an interview with Bloomberg, Cook said that the firm is currently “focusing on autonomous systems” — rather than, say, a car stamped with the Apple logo — and that this could be used for many different purposes.


“We sort of see it as the mother of all AI projects,” said Cook. “Autonomy is something that’s incredibly exciting for us, but we’ll see where it will take us. We’re not really saying from a product point of view what we’ll do, but we’re being straightforward that it’s a core technology we view as very important.”

Apple’s interest in autonomous vehicles has been something of an open secret in Silicon Valley. Rumors about the company’s efforts (codenamed Project Titan, and reportedly started in 2014) have been swirling for years. More recently, documents have emerged that clearly show Apple’s involvement in the technology, including the publication this April of a permit for the company to test self-driving cars in California.

Apple reportedly hired more than 1,000 engineers to work on Project Titan, but was forced to tweak its focus. In October last year, it was reported that the company had shrunk the team’s ambitions, from attempting to compete directly with the likes of Tesla by building the company’s own electric car, to focusing more on the software side of things. This interview with Cook confirms that this is Apple’s priority.


Whatever the company’s final goal, it is now, at least, being a bit more candid about its interest. Cook told Bloomberg that Apple sees the car industry as ripe for disruption, and noted that self-driving technology is just one of three “vectors of change” that will come to fruition in the near future. The other two, he says, are ride-sharing and electrification. “If you’ve driven an all-electric car it’s actually a marvelous experience,” said the Apple chief.



Apple won’t let apps annoy you with their own review prompts anymore

Apple is putting an end to the scourge of review prompts that seemed to pop up inside of some apps every few days. In a change to the App Store rules this week, Apple said it will now enforce hard limits on how review prompts show up and how often users have to see them. The changes were first spotted by 9to5Mac.


Under the new rules, developers will no longer be able to display review prompts however and whenever they’d like. Instead, there’ll be two key restrictions that should reduce headaches for everyone: First, apps will be required to use a new Apple-made review prompt, which allows users to leave a rating without exiting an app. That’s a huge convenience that may well get a lot more people to leave ratings. Apple introduced the rating prompt a few months ago, but it’s been optional up until now.

The second restriction is on how often that prompt can show up. An app can only display the prompt three times a year, regardless of how often it’s been updated. And once a user has left a rating, they’ll never see it again. Users also have the option to completely disable app review prompts inside the iOS Settings app, preventing the prompts from annoying them at all.

This seems like it should be a win-win for users and developers. People have been annoyed by app review prompts for years, and this update seems to remedy the problem. It may even make people more interested in leaving a review, because it can be done without exiting the app and because it means they’ll be done with the prompt for good. If that results in more reviews — and reviews from users who aren’t annoyed about switching apps — that’s a good thing for developers, too.


Part of the reason developers have their apps show review prompts so often is because Apple has always reset an app’s rating after every update, even very minor ones. With the redesigned App Store, developers will have the option to change that, so that their app’s ratings are maintained between updates. That’s likely to become a common choice — for good apps, at least — since users will only be able to get prompted for a rating once.



Apple’s advances in augmented reality highlight its real advantage over Google

For the multiple times Apple executives mentioned “machine learning” at the company’s developers conference Monday, they also emphasized an older theme that could be more important: Unified software.


Apple’s mobile operating system, or iOS, works the same and runs the same on every iPhone. That’s why app developers often prefer building for Apple before they build for Google’s Android, an operating system that’s splintered across different kinds of hardware. While the latest versions of Android consistently run on higher-end phones like the Google Pixel, cheaper and older phones often only run previous versions.

Apple’s control over both its operating system and the hardware on which that software runs came up throughout the keynote. That highlights what Google really needs to worry about when competing with Apple: The fragmentation of Android. This matters even when Google has a technical advantage.

Apple’s latest announcements in augmented reality are where the company’s advantage with a unified platform showed the most.


The ability to quickly deploy software to devices immediately differentiates Apple’s AR from Google AR computing platform Tango, which only runs on select newer-model phones.

 Keynote Address Opens Apple Worldwide Developers Conference

“When you bring the software together with these devices, we actually have hundreds of millions of iPhones and iPads that are going to be capable of AR,” Apple’s head of software, Craig Federighi, said. “That’s going to make overnight the AR kit the largest AR platform in the world.”

In general, only a portion of Android phones tend to run the latest version of the mobile software at any given time. While Google builds its own hardware now — such as the Pixel phone — it still relies largely on third-party manufacturers and carriers to deliver Android updates to hardware that runs it.


Update: Google said it has made efforts to lessen the fragmentation of software across Android devices, including rolling out a program to make it easier for device makers to upgrade to newer versions of Android, and ensuring software in Google Play Services is updated frequently across devices. Google reports 93 percent of users ahave the latest version of Google Play Services.

Federighi brought up hardware and platform advantages again when he announced a new set of machine learning software tools for developers.

Developers that used Apple’s new machine learning tools would be able to execute their use with “tremendous performance on-device,” he said, and have access to “all the data privacy benefits and all of the carefully tuned compatibility with all of our platforms.”


What he didn’t seem to emphasize was what made the tools themselves interesting. That’s probably because Apple is known to lag behind Google, Microsoft and others in machine learning.

The iPhone didn’t publish its first artificial intelligence research paper until December. By comparison, Google had 44 papers accepted this year to the International Conference on Machine Learning while Microsoft had 33, according to a Medium post by a researcher at AI think tank OpenAI.

And Apple’s new machine learning offerings are also not all drawn from Apple technology. “Some of the pre-trained machine learning models that Apple offers are open-sourced Google code, primarily for image recognition,” noted Quartz reporter Dave Gershgorn. Google confirmed this.



Why Apple’s HomePod is so much more expensive than Google and Amazon’s smart speakers

Apple is responding to the runaway popularity of Amazon’s Echo smart speaker with a Siri-based competitor. The new speaker, dubbed HomePod, was unveiled at the Worldwide Developers Conference in San Jose, California, on Monday.


Apple is playing catch-up. Amazon introduced the Echo way back in 2014, and Google started shipping its competitor, Google Home, last year. The HomePod won’t start shipping until December 2017, and at $349, it’s about twice as expensive as the Echo ($179) and Google Home ($129).

Of course, it’s not unusual for Apple to charge a premium for upmarket technology products. The iPhone, for example, is one of the most expensive smartphones on the market, yet Apple sells tens of millions of them every year.

In his talk introducing the device, Apple’s Phil Schiller positioned the HomePod as a smart speaker for music lovers. He bragged about the sophisticated hardware in the device. It has a ring of seven small “tweeter” speakers arranged in a ring around the bottom of the unit and a large 4-inch woofer in the middle.



In contrast, reviewers have panned the sound quality of both the Google and Amazon speakers. “While neither speaker is outright awful, I wouldn’t buy either of them if sound quality was my primary aim,” CNet wrote last November. The Echo has just two speakers, including a 2.5-inch woofer that doesn’t compare favorably to the one in the HomePod.


The big question is how important audio quality is for success in this market. Apple is betting that some customers will pay a big premium for higher sound quality. Amazon and Google are betting that most customers won’t care.

Amazon and Google’s smart speakers play a supporting role in the companies’ larger business strategies. Amazon’s goal is to make the Echo ubiquitous to help sell Amazon Prime subscriptions and other digital content. Google wants to get users hooked on as many different Google services as possible to support its advertising business. For both companies, the priority is to attract as many customers as possible, without worrying too much about making a profit from each one.


In contrast, making devices is the main thing Apple does. Apple needs its users to be excited enough about the product to pay a hefty premium. It doesn’t care that much if marginal customers wind up going to Amazon or Google, any more than it cares about customers who buy dirt-cheap Android phones.

The big question for Apple is how important the “platform” aspect of these smart speaker platforms turns out to be. Amazon is betting that ubiquity is the key to success in this market. It is not only selling a $49 mini speaker called the Echo Dot, it is also encouraging third parties to put Alexa, the Echo’s intelligent assistant, into everything from lamps to washing machines. The rapidly growing number of Alexa devices is encouraging developers to create “skills” — the smart speaker equivalent of apps — for Alexa. If you buy an Alexa-enabled appliance, you’ll also be able to ask it to call you an Uber or play trivia games with you.



Apple’s ‘Siri speaker’ reportedly enters manufacturing as announcement nears

Apple’s answer to the Amazon Echo lineup and Google Home has advanced to the manufacturing stage, according to Bloomberg. The report says that a WWDC unveiling for the product remains possible, but Apple won’t be shipping the device until later in the year.


Aside from what we’ve heard about the “Siri speaker” before (such as deep HomeKit integration and the ability to control smart home gadgets), today’s Bloomberg report says that Apple is placing a heavy emphasis on sound quality. The unannounced produced will supposedly include “virtual surround sound technology” and “more advanced acoustics” than its chief competitors made by Amazon and Google. That suggests Apple Music will also play a key role alongside the product’s Siri and HomeKit features.

Apple has “considered including sensors that measure a room’s acoustics and automatically adjust audio levels during use,” the report claims. That sounds somewhat similar to the TruePlay feature available from Sonos speakers, which uses a microphone on a mobile device to optimize sound output for that specific environment.

Apple’s WWDC keynote is coming up quickly; the event is happening this Monday starting at 10AM PT/1PM ET. The Verge will be there to cover all the news that Apple has to share — be it new software (iOS 11, macOS), MacBook Pro updates, this long-rumored speaker, or something else entirely.




Apple reportedly updating entire MacBook lineup at WWDC

Apple is reportedly planning on upgrading all three of its MacBook products at WWDC this year, according to a report from Mark Gurman at Bloomberg.


The company is said to be working on three updated models: a MacBook Pro with Intel’s latest Kaby Lake processor, a more powerful version of the 12-inch MacBook, and an updated 13-inch MacBook Air, which could get a faster processor as well. But sadly, there’s no word on a better screen. Apple really wants you to think of the 13-inch MacBook Pro as the Air’s successor.

While none of the updates sound like particularly major changes from a hardware perspective, it’s encouraging to see that Apple is taking at least some of the criticism of its latest MacBook Pros to heart and updating the laptop line with Intel’s newest processors. It’s unclear whether other concerns like RAM flexibility and uneven USB-C performance in some models will be addressed. You’ll definitely still need dongles.

The MacBook and MacBook Air are certainly due for an update, having been last refreshed in 2016 and 2015, respectively. WWDC 2017 is scheduled to take place from June 5th to June 9th.



Steve Jobs, Bill Gates and Microsoft. It’s complicated

Looking back at Steve Jobs’ tenure at Apple, it’s impossible to separate the role Microsoft and Bill Gates played. The companies helped pioneer the industry and define an era. The two CEOs partnered at various times, competed all the time, and challenged one another in ways that helped shape the landscape of technology. It’s a complex relationship – which you can witness in this amusing video compilation of Steve Jobs best quotes about Microsoft.

During the development of the Macintosh in the early 80s, Microsoft was an important ally. Apple needed groundbreaking softwares for it’s upcoming platform and Microsoft was one of the few companies developing for it. It was a crucial phase for Apple.

The strength of their relationship could be witnessed at an Internal Apple Event in Hawai where Steve Jobs introduced the Macintosh to a few Apple VIPs. Bill Gates sugarcoated the Mac and Steve Jobs loved every moment of it.

Steve Jobs and Bill Gates were so close at the time that according to a Guardian article, they even double-dated occasionally.

But all good things must end.

Steve Jobs had this dream where Apple would dominate the computer business and Microsoft would own the application-side of that business. The OS would naturally also by controlled by Apple.

But Bill Gates wasn’t blind. He understood that the Graphical User Interface was the future of computing. He also knew that it would quickly make its DOS operating system irrelevant and threatens Microsoft to become (just) a software company dependent of Apple. Bill Gates had bigger plans.

For years, Microsoft had engineers secretly copying the Macintosh OS and working on its own version of a Graphical OS: Windows. Not long after the Internal Event in Hawaii, Steve Jobs learned the crushing news. Microsoft wanted to compete with Apple; Bill Gates deceived him.


For the next 15 years, Apple would engage in a strange relationship with Microsoft. On one end, Microsoft was prying marketshare away from Apple, on the other, it was one of its biggest partner. Steve Jobs would soon leave Apple and create NeXT but would not succeed to make a dent in Microsoft’s dominance.

Along the way, Jobs often sparred with Microsoft, criticizing the company’s lack of creativity.

“The only problem with Microsoft is they just have no taste,” Jobs said in the 1996 public television documentary “Triumph of the Nerds.” “They have absolutely no taste. And I don’t mean that in a small way, I mean that in a big way, in the sense that they don’t think of original ideas, and they don’t bring much culture into their products.”

In a New York Times article that ran after the documentary aired, Jobs disclosed that he called Gates afterward to apologize. But only to a degree.

”I told him I believed every word of what I’d said but that I never should have said it in public,” Jobs told the Times. ”I wish him the best, I really do. I just think he and Microsoft are a bit narrow. He’d be a broader guy if he had dropped acid once or gone off to an ashram when he was younger.”


But if Steve was still bitter about Bill, why would he keep a letter of Bill next to his bed during his last moments?

Though to say…

What both men really thought of each others or what really happened behind the curtain will probably never be known. You have to hope that these titans truly shared mutual respects and eventually found grounds to appreciate each others. Bill Gates seems to have:

Bill Gates statement at the passing of Steve Jobs

I’m truly saddened to learn of Steve Jobs’ death. Melinda and I extend our sincere condolences to his family and friends, and to everyone Steve has touched through his work.

Steve and I first met nearly 30 years ago, and have been colleagues, competitors and friends over the course of more than half our lives.

The world rarely sees someone who has had the profound impact Steve has had, the effects of which will be felt for many generations to come.

For those of us lucky enough to get to work with him, it’s been an insanely great honor. I will miss Steve immensely.

Bill Gates, 2011.




The Apple Watch outsold every other wearable last quarter

Apple might not be selling as many iPhones as it would like, but it sounds like its Watches have been doing quite well. According to Strategy Analytics, it shipped 3.5 million wearables in the first quarter of 2017, 59 percent higher than the 2.2 million devices it did in the same period last year. Cupertino captured 16 percent of the global marketshare and stole the wearables crown from Fitbit, which had a much less stellar quarter. Fitbit only shipped 2.9 million devices in Q1, 36 percent less than the 4.5 million units it moved in the first quarter of 2016. Even Xiaomi sold more devices, putting the beleaguered wearables-maker in third place.


Those results are consistent with Apple’s latest earnings report. The company said its Watch and TV sales jumped up 31 percent year-over-year, and head honcho Tim Cook said Watch sales have nearly doubled since last year. Neil Mawston, Strategy Analytics executive director, said Apple’s Watch Series 2 has been selling well “due to enhanced styling, intensive marketing and a good retail presence.”

On the other hand, there’s less and less demand for Fitbit’s bands, perhaps due to the increasing number of sports-oriented smartwatch options for buyers, among other factors. Its attempt to enter the smartwatch market was also late and quite underwhelming. While Fitbit still sold the most wearables late last year, it was already in trouble by the beginning of 2017. It had to cut 110 jobs in January, which might not sound like much but is still 6 percent of its workforce. In an attempt to recapture part of the market it lost, Fitbit is reportedly preparing to release a new smartwatch and a pair of wireless headphones in the fall.




Apple Named World’s Largest Wearables Vendor With an Estimated 3.5M Apple Watch Shipments

Apple became the world’s largest wearables vendor in the first quarter of 2017 with an estimated 3.5 million Apple Watch shipments, according to new research data shared this afternoon by Strategy Analytics.

Apple Watch shipments overtook Fitbit shipments during Q1 2017, allowing Apple to capture 15.9 percent global marketshare to become the top wearables vendor. Fitbit shipped an estimated 2.9 million wearable devices during the quarter, while Apple’s closest competitor, Xiaomi, shipped an estimated 3.4 million wearable devices.

Apple’s estimated 3.5 million shipments are up from an estimated 2.2 million Apple Watch shipments in the year-ago quarter. As Apple Watch shipments have grown, Fitbit shipments have dropped sharply from an estimated 4.5 million units in Q1 2016.

Xiaomi is still close to Apple at 15.5 percent global marketshare, but has seen its shipment numbers slip while Apple’s have grown.

Unrecognizable woman holding wearable gadget
In the year-ago quarter, Xiaomi’s marketshare was at 20.9 percent, while Apple’s was at 12.1 percent. Fitbit, meanwhile, has dropped from 24.7 percent in Q1 2016 to 13.2 percent in Q1 2017.

Cliff Raskind, Director at Strategy Analytics, said, “Fitbit shipped 2.9 million wearables worldwide in Q1 2017, falling a huge 36 percent annually from 4.5 million in Q1 2016. Fitbit has lost its wearables leadership to Apple, due to slowing demand for its fitnessbands and a late entry to the emerging smartwatch market. Fitbit’s shipments, revenue, pricing and profit are all shrinking at the moment and the company has a major fight on its hands to recover this year.”

Apple does not share official Apple Watch sales numbers, instead lumping the device into its “Other Products” category that also includes the Apple TV, Beats products, iPod, and Apple-branded and third-party accessories, so Apple Watch sales numbers shared by various analytics firms are all estimates.

Revenue from “Other Products” was $2.87 billion during the second quarter of 2017 according to Apple’s recently released earnings report, up from $2.19 in the year-ago quarter. According to Apple CEO Tim Cook, Apple Watch sales have nearly doubled year-over-year.



Apple shows off Dubai Mall store with ‘stunning views’, motorized carbon fiber windows

A day before the official opening, Apple invited local press to tour its latest retail store within the Dubai Mall in the United Arab Emirates. Headline features include views of the world’s tallest building, the Burj Khalifa, and a 180-feet wide motorized window comprising 18 carbon fiber panels.

To mitigate Dubai’s climate, Foster + Parters designed eighteen 37.5-foot-high motorized “Solar Wings” that respond to the ever-changing environmental conditions. When the sun is at its hottest they cool the store, and in the evenings they open to welcome everyone to the public terrace. Inspired by the the traditional Arabic Mashrabiya, each “Solar Wing” is locally fabricated from 340 carbon fiber reinforced polymer rods, and at 180 feet wide, the 18 panels make up one of the world’s largest kinetic art installations.


The store will also provide great views of another Dubai attraction …

Each evening, there is a spectacular evening fountain show directly outside the store, and Apple is inviting visitors to use that 18-foot wide opening window to view the display. Video of the fountain display can be seen below.

Apple’s announcement of the opening also focuses on its rebranded and expanded store workshops, Today at Apple. This initiative was revealed in a CBS interview yesterday.

At the heart of every Apple Store is the drive to educate and inspire. “Today at Apple“ will launch at Apple Dubai Mall and in all 495 Apple stores next month with new sessions across photo and video, music, coding, art and design, and more, led by highly-trained team members. Apple Dubai Mall will also host high-profile events including live music, intimate conversations with film-makers and photographers, and live workshops with some of the world’s top talent. Events on opening day include Live Art with Myneandyours, and Artist Duos with musician Hamdan Al Abri and artist Sultan Al Ramahi.

These will be run by Creative Pros, a new position we first discovered in August of last year.

The motorized windows look pretty spectacular.



Apple shows off Dubai Mall store with ‘stunning views’, motorized carbon fiber windows [Video]

Facebook Messenger is getting an Apple Music extension

Facebook just announced a bunch of changes to Messenger, with the highlight being new ways for apps to integrate with it. And while it’s not available yet, one of the standout partners announced was Apple Music.

Near the end of his presentation at Facebook’s F8 conference this afternoon, David Marcus, head of Messenger, said, “I’m really excited to share with you that Apple Music will soon be on the platform as well.”

There weren’t any details beyond that, and Apple Music only got a “coming soon” label, so there isn’t even a firm ETA on when it’ll be available. But Facebook and Apple have worked together before on music integrations — songs from Apple Music can be embedded in the News Feed — so it isn’t a huge surprise to see this partnership, even from the usually go-it-alone Apple.

From the sound of it, the integration will allow people to browse Apple Music from inside of Messenger, find a song, and send it into their chat. Everyone will then be able to play the song back without leaving Messenger, which is a huge plus over how Facebook’s older integrations work, kicking users out to separate apps. Of course, you’ll almost certainly still need a subscription to hear a full song.


For those who don’t want to wait, Spotify is launching an extension that does all of this right away. Spotify first started working inside Messenger just over a year ago, but it wasn’t a great experience since you had to go out to Spotify to both find and listen to a song.



WhatsApp just added an important feature for Siri

Too tired to read a friend’s message on WhatsApp? There is good news for you because you can now ask Siri to use out your messages on the iOS version of WhatsApp. Exciting isn’t it? Yes, because it’s one feature that could encourage more people to use the chat app and encourage more engagement among users.

According to MacRumors, the latest update to the chat app works in version 2.17.2 running at least iOS 10.3 on your device.

Other updates were also added to the chat app, including ability to select multiple statuses at once in the My Update screen, and you can now forward or revoke them. The old Voice Call icon has now been replaced with a “+” icon, and when tapped, it displays a list of contacts for making both voice and video calls.

WhatsApp also made visual improvements to the Calls tab, Contact Info and Group Info screens. In all, it’s a better and highly improved version of WhatsApp that has now been made available for every user of the iOS version of the app. Updates have already been rolled out, but you must be running at least iOS 10.3 version on your device.

Last September, WhatsApp added some exciting features to the app that got many users excited. The upgrade was added to iPhones running on iOS 10, and includes ability to use Siri to place calls and compose messages. Adding ability to use Siri to make calls is one feature a lot of iPhone users would find very interesting. However, there were other added features that were just as interesting as that.’

Even while your screen is locked, the update is extremely important for a lot of users as it frees them from the frustration of having to swipe right on a notification to open the app just to receive a call. Calls can be answered same way as regular phone calls. The feature only works on iPhones running on iOS 10 upward.

A new lock screen widget was also added to the app to allow you see how many unread messages you have. It means you no longer have to unlock your device to see how many messages waiting to be read. Probably not as exciting as the Siri integration, but not a bad idea adding it to the app. This feature is only available to iPhones running on iOS 10 upward.

To improve how you forward media to your contacts, a quick forward button was also added last year by WhatsApp. The quick forward button for media that makes it easier to share images and videos within the app. It means you no longer have to sift through several screens to forward images and videos to your contact. The update was, however, not restricted to iPhones running on iOS 10, which means it’s available to everyone.

Are you excited about the new updates; especially the one that enables Siri to read out messages when you are hands-free? Share your experience with us by using the comment box.



Apple’s Augmented Reality Plans May Include iPhone 8 Smart Connector for Special Glasses

Apple’s iPhone 8 will reportedly include an iPad Pro-like smart connector that may be the link up for augmented reality and virtual reality headsets. The report is tenuous, but the idea that Apple is ready to introduce its augmented reality platform this fall is interesting.

Word of Apple’s plan comes courtesy of the Israeli website The Verifier saying the smart connector will also be used for charging, sort of like MagSafe for the iPhone. Assuming they’re right, Apple will use the iPhone’s smart connector right away for more than it’s done with the iPad Pro. Currently, the only accessory taking advantage of the iPad’s smart connector is the Smart Keyboard cover.

It’s no secret Apple is exploring augmented reality, which overlays data, graphics, and other content onto whatever users are looking at. Google’s first public attempt at grabbing the augmented reality market was Google Glass—high tech eye glasses that projected information only the wearer could see.

Google Glass never amounted to more than a public exploration of what’s possible with augmented reality technology in part because convincing people to wear glasses who don’t need them is a hard sell. Apple will likely use the iPhone as its augmented reality platform, just as Facebook just announced it’s doing.


Using smartphones with augmented reality makes sense because users won’t have to buy more equipment to carry around, and the built-in cameras can handle the image and video capture necessary while the phone processors handle the real time overlay of data, all of which displays on the built-in screen.

Relying on smartphones means users need their phone in hand to experience augmented reality, which they currently do when playing Pokémon GO—a popular augmented reality game that sends players on hunts in the real world to capture virtual characters.

Smartphones and Augmented Reality

If Apple wants to make augmented reality feel more immersive, adding in some sort of glasses is the most logical path to take. Glasses as an accessory instead of a requirement means more iPhone owners can try augmented reality without spending extra money, and those who want a deeper experience can buy Apple’s special glasses.

Connecting the glasses to a smart port, however, seems clunky and awkward since there’ll be an extra cable running from the glasses to your iPhone. Instead, Apple could use the smart connector to charge its glasses and go with Bluetooth when they’re in use.

That said, there isn’t much right now to back up the idea of augmented reality glasses for the iPhone 8 yet. The Verifier doesn’t have a history with insider sources, and there aren’t any independent reports echoing what they’re saying.

Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman, for example, has a well documented track record with Apple product leaks, and his report from earlier this week has no mention of the smart connector or augmented reality glasses. Until more sources back up this report we’re remaining skeptical.



Apple Will Soon Join Facebook in the AR Online Platform Video War

At the moment augmented reality is still a clunky, phone-in-front-of-your-face experience, but today Facebook promised to transform that experience when it announced a new AR platform. And you can be sure that quite a few folks at Apple were watching with great interest the live stream of the F8 developers conference in San Jose, California, where the new platform was introduced with plenty of striking visual aids.


Onstage at the conference, Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg and some of his top aides energetically kicked off what is sure to be a new platform war—one that will soon be joined by Apple and plenty of other competitors.

“This space will get crowded though, and I expect both Apple and Google to also bring these functionalities to their camera apps and offer developers the chance to build AR experiences on their platforms as well,” Creative Strategies analyst Ben Bajarin told Fast Company in an email.

Facebook made a strategic decision to be the first tech giant to launch an AR platform when the hardware and technology is still in its nascent stage. In Facebook’s version of AR, a user will hold their phone in front of their face and watch as all kinds of moving imagery and information is superimposed over the picture of the real world seen by the camera. Yep, kinda like Pokémon Go.

Facebook said it will provide developers with precise location, object recognition, and 3D effects tools they need to start building their own custom AR experiences. That could mean anything from AR games to a retailer placing a data card over a product in front of the camera.

“Facebook is smart to give developers the tools to build AR experiences and give those tools to a wider developer community,” Bajarin says. “They are approaching this as a true platform play, which is smart.”

It seems likely that Apple will have to weigh in with its own AR platform sooner or later—I’m guessing sooner. Two media outlets have already reported that Apple is working on prototypes of some kind of AR glasses. This is unsurprising; the company has likely been working on glasses for a couple of years. The press reports say the company already has “hundreds” of engineers working on its own AR effort.

Apple isn’t known for being first in emerging technologies, preferring to hang back and drop in when it knows it can deliver a product or service better than everybody else. Entering the market with a cool-looking and high-functioning set of AR glasses would be one way to outshine the competing platforms. But Apple may not be able to wait until the core technologies needed for such glasses become available at mass market levels.


In the near term, Apple might begin adding new camera technology to the iPhone that can support AR apps, both its own and those from third-party developers. Fast Company previously reported that Apple will source 3D camera technology from Lumentum for its 10th anniversary iPhone 8, which will likely be announced this fall.

Facebook’s AR announcement today may end up serving as the ideal opening act for Apple, says Technalysis Research president Bob O’Donnell. Facebook’s experience in its current form is built to work with the camera on the user’s phone, he says. “So Facebook announces a 2D Snapchat-like experience with photo filters and calls it AR.” Facebook will have introduced the AR concept to a mass audience with an experience that Apple can best by leveraging a true 3D camera in the next iPhone (or, possibly, with the dual cameras in the iPhone 7 Plus), says O’Donnell.

Zuckerberg may also have lowered expectations around AR—which, after all the overly hyped Magic Leap coverage, has led many people to anticipate a headset-wearable experience. “So when Apple announces an AR experience that works on the phone instead of an AR headset, it won’t be as much of a disappointment,” O’Donnell says.

Creative Strategies’ Bajarin believes that Facebook and Google are more capable than Apple at delivering cloud-based augmented reality content from the cloud, which could be a big advantage. He also believes Facebook and Google have the edge in the machine learning needed to help identify objects and people in the real world, a key function in AR apps. And let’s not forget Microsoft, which arguably has more experience in the space than anyone, after having developed the first major AR headset with the HoloLens.

Apple’s advantage lies in its ability to control far more of the hardware and software stack underpinning the AR experience—the apps, the phone, and the OS. Apple may begin building AR features deep in iOS, so that it could begin to “augment” lots of different aspects of the phone experience, like Siri does. By building AR into the OS, Apple might enable a richer experience that’s optimized for the iPhone.

It’s even possible that Apple could begin talking about its AR strategy as soon as its upcoming developer conference, WWDC, in June. Since Apple likely wants to speak to developers en masse and in person about what could become a major new platform, it may choose to at least start the conversation, as opposed to waiting until next year’s conference.

If it does, it will likely lay out a wade-into-the-water approach that will look something like what Facebook announced today. That is, the AR experience will be seen through the display of an iPhone, not through a face wearable. But that might be just the thing to get developers and consumers used to the concept, without getting too exotic with the hardware.


Whatever the shape of the product, Apple will try to make a grand entrance into the AR market. It won’t be first in, so it will have to infuse the technology with simplicity, style, and a wow factor that turns consumers on and makes the competing platforms seem inferior.

ABC's "Good Morning America" - 2016



Here’s How Apple Could Bring Augmented Reality to the iPhone

Apple is ramping up its plans to pursue augmented reality, according to a new Bloomberg report, which provides some detail on how the company may incorporate the technology into the iPhone.

The Cupertino, Calif.-based company is said to be exploring features that would allow iPhone owners to change the depth of photographs taken with the phone’s camera after they’ve been captured. Another potential implementation would let users isolate a specific object in an image, such as a person’s head, and tilt it 180 degrees, the report says. Apple is also developing a feature that would make it possible to overlay virtual effects and objects onto a photo, similar to Snapchat.

The report cautions that Apple may not roll out these features, but that the company has iPhone camera engineers working on them. Apple’s iPhone 7 Plus has two cameras, one specifically tailored for better zooming, which allows the phone to shoot images that sharpen a subject against a slightly blurred background.

Apple has reportedly assembled a team of experts specializing in augmented reality technology, camera sensors, 3D video production, and wearable tech hardware. This group reportedly includes Mike Rockwell, who previously ran the hardware and new technologies team at Dolby, as well as Cody White, who was formerly a lead engineer for Amazon’s Lumberyard VR platform. Last year, The Financial Times also reported that Apple was building a secret team dedicated to developing virtual and augmented reality products.

The iPhone maker is also said to be working on a pair of augmented reality glasses, as Bloomberg previously reported. This new headset combined with the upcoming iPhone camera features could put Apple in direct competition with Snap Inc., which released its first pair of glasses in September.

Apple CEO Tim Cook has previously said that augmented reality is an area of interest for the company, although he hasn’t discussed plans for future products. “I think AR is extremely interesting and sort of a core technology,” Cook told The Washington Post in August. “So, yes, it’s something we’re doing a lot of things on behind that curtain we talked about.”



iPads In Every Hospital: Apple’s Plan To Crack The $3 Trillion Health Care Sector

Garry James, 60, is perched on the edge of his hospital bed, temporarily unhooked from monitors that track his vital signs. It’s his third week waiting for a heart transplant, a nerve-wracking process that can stretch out months or even years, but he greets me with a wide smile.


“I’m an Android guy,” says James, while clutching the iPad that Cedars Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles gave him when he was admitted into the hospital. Unlike some of the more senior patients on the ward, he got up to speed with the technology in no time. “My son, who is 10, knew exactly what to do,” James says. These days, James uses the iPad to message his nurses, order magazines, make notes, browse medication side effects, reserve lodging for his family when they visit from Las Vegas, and review his medical record.

The device has helped him feel more in control of his own care. “I want to have an intelligent conversation with my doctor,” James says. “Just enough to be guided on the right path.”

An iPad might not seem revolutionary in the internet age, but it’s actually a big step forward for patients to have digital health information at their fingertips. Many doctors, like Cedars Sinai’s Shaun Miller, remember a time even five years ago, when many processes were still paper-based and medical information sat in silos. It took a $35 billion investment from the federal government back in 2009 with the HITECH Act to kick-start the process to digitize health data. Even today, many patients still receive their health data on a USB stick or CD-ROM, making the shift to mobile at some hospitals truly cutting-edge.

A major reason that hospitals across the United States have been notoriously slow to adopt mobile and consumer technologies relative to other sectors, like finance and retail, is that many are still tied to on-premises enterprise software. “Health care has been the last bastion for (apps with) design principles, mobility, and a clean, compelling consumer experience to infiltrate,” says Sterling Lanier, CEO of Tonic Health, an app that collects medical data. It has also been a challenge to get doctors and other health professionals on the same page. As the associate chief medical officer, it’s Miller’s job to help convince doctors to change their processes. It’s only recently that the majority of fellow physicians have fully adapted to the shift away from clipboards, fax machines, and pagers. “A lot of it has been resistance to change,” Miller tells me. Changing the way their work is done “can feel scary” to some medical professionals, Miller says.

Meanwhile, patients seem to have adapted quickly to the changes, as many already use mobile devices in their daily lives. James pulls up a page with all of his prescriptions, and clicks on each to review possible side effects. If he has any concerns, he can send a direct message to a specific person on his specific care team and get a response in minutes, rather than pressing a button for any on-call nurse to show up. “I’ve never seen anything like this,” he says.


For Apple, the $3 trillion health care sector offers a lot of potential for growth for its iPad. The company is likely to restate its commitment to the tablet device as early as next week, with the rumored announcement of the 9.7-Inch “iPad Pro 2.” From an enterprise sales perspective–a priority for the iPhone maker in the wake of recent partnerships with Cisco and IBM–large hospitals and health systems that shift to iOS tend to buy devices in bulk. “We now have hundreds of iPads for patients to use,” says Miller, who uses a compliant iPhone app called Voalte to text with other providers. “As we expand to more wards, it’ll be thousands.”

iPhones and iPads have been used by some hospitals for more than five years, but it’s only recently that the company went public about its interest in health care. “Leading hospitals and health systems are using Apple products to transform all aspects of health care inside the hospital and beyond,” says an Apple spokesperson, emphasizing the “privacy and security of iOS” as a key factor for its growing popularity among hospitals for remote patient monitoring and in-patient care.


For Apple, health care is one of the largest sectors it is tackling as part of its enterprise efforts. It isn’t alone. Rival phone makers Samsung and Alphabet also see huge potential to bring mobile technologies to patients and clinicians. “There’s still some transitions that have to take place in the industry,” explains Ben Bajarin, a technology analyst with Creative Strategies, who has been tracking Apple’s move into health care. Some of these challenges include the lack of reimbursement from insurance companies for new technologies that are shown to improve patient outcomes and cultural resistance among some doctors.


Apple’s interest in health care was also initially surprising to many outside observers, given the complexities and regulatory constraints that many tech companies shy away from. “Health is a sensitive area, and it’s not consumer-oriented,” says Bajarin, who suggests that it wasn’t an obvious target for Apple. “You don’t just have to pass the Federal Communications Commission,” he says. “You have to go through a lot of regulatory protocols,” including the FDA. But Bajarin says the move was a long time coming: The late Apple CEO Steve Jobs realized how “broken and bad” many health care processes were, such as the poor user experience, after he got sick with cancer.

After consulting with dozens of experts and building a team, Apple opted to “look at themselves as a platform,” Bajarin adds. Rather than making its own apps for hospitals, the company is working with top developers who are already building apps for health–as it does in other industries–by taking feedback from experts, like developers and hospital executives, and connecting them to its developer relations team to answer ongoing questions from top app makers.

In response to conversations with industry experts, Apple introduced a slew of software services–CareKit, ResearchKit, and HealthKit–that are all designed to make it easier for mobile developers and consumers to pull together disparate health information such as steps, sleep, and heart rate in one place. HealthKit, which was introduced first, is designed to make it easier for developers to gather health data–with the user’s consent. ResearchKit, already in use by developers at major academic hospitals and universities like Mount Sinai, Stanford Children’s Hospital, and Harvard University, helps researchers recruit participants for their studies on mobile. CareKit is geared at helping patients with chronic conditions share data with their care team.



Apple Floating Solar Island Will Bring Renewable Solar Energy To Japan

Apple is not just about iPhone 6 or iPhone 7. The company is very much committed to using renewable energy source for powering its factories and supply chain. Apple will set a new milestone this time. The company will bring Apple floating solar island for powering Apple Operations. Apple collaborated with iPhone and iPad maker and supplier Ibiden to use 100% renewable energy for manufacturing Apple components. Ibiden is the first partner of Apple in Japan to do so.

Japan does not have much space because of its mountainous terrains. Due to lack of space, it’s hard for Japan to establish too many power plants. But Apple will help Japan with the Apple floating solar island to bring the renewable energy in the country.

On 9th March, the iPad and iPhone maker and supplier committed to using 100% renewable energy for manufacturing Apple components. Apple already mentioned, “this move is a significant step in the company’s efforts for helping its manufacturing partner’s transition of clean power”.

Investment plans of Ibiden on Apple floating solar island

In the course of time, Ibiden will invest in more than 20 renewable energy facilities prepared by Apple. It will also include the Apple floating solar Island which they will construct on the “Converter lumber yard”. It will allow Ibiden to deal with the space problem in an innovative way.

According to Apple, more than 12MW of solar power is produced from their renewable power sources. Now, this much power is more than enough for covering the Apple manufacturing process in Japan. At present, Apple is powering their operations with renewable sources in more than 23 countries and 93% of the worldwide operations. Apple already extended their renewable energy pledge to the suppliers in China.

For this, they constructed solar farms designed in removing more than 20 million metric tonnes of greenhouse gasses from the air. It will also assist the Chinese government to radically reducing the air pollution in next five years. Apple said, at the end of 2018, the company and its partners will generate more than 25 billion kilowatt hour per year in clean energy. The power can run more than 400000 cars off the road.



Apple wants to make it harder to repair your already-hard to repair iPhone

It appears Apple has no intention of making it easier to fix your broken MacBook and iPhone devices.

The Cupertino behemoth has sent delegates to lobby against a proposed bill in Nebraska that will grant consumers and third-party repair chains access to service manuals, diagnostic equipment and replacement parts, BuzzFeed News reports.

Apple representative Steve Kester advised State Sen. Lydia Brasch against the proposed “right to repair” bill, warning the proposal could turn Nebraska into a “Mecca for bad actors” if passed. According to Kester, the act poses a large threat to consumers as it could grant hackers hardware-level access to company products.

The Big A has consistently voiced its preference that its products should only be handled by certified technicians. Samsung and John Deere have similarly argued the proposed legislation could expose industry secrets and compromise security and safety concerns.

Tech industry groups, including CompTIA, the Consumer Technology Association and the Information Technology Industry council have also taken a stance against the bill. Curiously, the groups represent some the leading names in technology like Microsoft, Google, Nintendo and Sony.

Among other things, the opposers argue the bill would “compromise intellectual property” and complicate safety regulations. They further claim consumers already have “substantial choice when it comes to visiting the repair facility that best suits their needs” as it is.

While Apple products are notoriously difficult to repair, the bill could make it easier to fix other consumer electronics that require less effort and skill to patch up.

But on the other hand, putting the “right to repair” in the hands of unqualified DIY repair aficionados opens the door for an uncontrolled stream of potentially dangerous “quick fixes.”

Still, as Repair Association executive director Gay Gordon-Byrne says, “[w]e should be able to repair the things we buy.”



Remembering Steve Jobs’ liberating advice about death

Steve Jobs was an inspiration to many, so it’s no wonder his talk about pursuing your dreams has been watched more than 26 million times.


The video shows Jobs addressing an audience at Stamford University in 2005.


He got off to a somewhat unpredictable start given the setting; talking about how he dropped out of college so he could stop attending the classes that didn’t interest him.


Instead, he slept on a friends’ floor and attended the classes that genuinely interested him.


He attended a typography class that later inspired the typography that was designed into the first Mac computer.


Then, Jobs spoke about how he was fired from his own company ten years after starting Apple, by the board of directors.


He said:


I didn’t see it then, but it turned out that getting fired from Apple was the best thing that could have ever happened to me.


The heaviness of being successful was replaced by the lightness of being a beginner again, less sure about everything.


It freed me to enter one of the most creative periods of my life.


Jobs then went onto create NeXt and Pixar, which was later bought by Apple; and went back to work for Apple.


He said:


I’m pretty sure none of this would have happened if I hadn’t been fired from Apple.


Don’t lose faith.


I’m convinced that the only thing that kept me going was that I loved what I did.


You’ve got to find what you love.


Jobs goes on to say that he asks himself every morning: “If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?”


And whenever the answer has been “No” for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.


Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose.


You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.


Death is very likely the single best invention of life.


It is life’s change agent.


It clears out the old to make way for the new.



Audiobooks.com becomes the first premium audiobook service to offer full Apple Watch and Android Wear smartwatch compatibility

TORONTO, Feb. 16, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — Audiobooks.com is pleased to announce their full compatibility with both Apple and Android wearable technologies, making them the only premium audiobook service to provide that option to their customers.

“We recognize how important innovation and convenience are to our customers, so offering them the option to listen with Apple and Android watches was important to us,” says Ian Small, Audiobooks.com CEO.

This expansion into wearable technology is in addition to Audiobooks.com’s availability on tvOS, Sonos, CarPlay, Android Auto, and select infotainment systems in GM, Land Rover and Jaguar vehicles.

“Connective technology – in homes, in cars, and now in style – is the way of the future, and Audiobooks.com is committed to being on the leading edge of that movement.”

Apple Watch and Android Wear smartwatch users can now:

  • Launch the Audiobooks.com app from their smartwatch
  • Browse and listen to any audiobook in their My Books library
  • Access controls for play, pause, forward, rewind and volume

This announcement follows the recent Wear 2.0 version update for Android, with which Audiobooks.com is fully compatible when coupled with the mobile app.

About Audiobooks.com
Founded in 2011, Audiobooks.com is an app-based streaming and download service for audiobooks, delivering fast and easy access to over 100,000 titles to booklovers around the world. Subscribers can listen to their audiobook of choice on any Internet-enabled device via the free Audiobooks.com app. The company’s proprietary technology synchronizes users’ last listened-to position across all devices, creating a seamless user experience. Find out more at www.Audiobooks.com.



Apple and Facebook gunning for Netflix with aggressive plans for original content

“In terms of original content, we have put our toe in the water doing some original content for Apple Music, and that will be rolling out through the year,” Cook said. “We are learning from that, and we’ll go from there.”

Cook went on to note that he is pleased with the company’s progress on Apple TV, which launched a year ago. The device, similar to Roku, connects TVs to the Internet and allows access to streaming service apps such as Netflix, Hulu and ESPN.

Now Apple wants to join Netflix in becoming a content provider. Apple has plans to “participate economically in some of that by offering our platform selling and distributing,” per Cook.

“With our toe in the water we are learning a lot about the original content business, and thinking about ways that we could play in that,” he said.

Not to be outdone, Facebook is also planning to bring long-form content to screens larger than a mobile phone, per The Wall Street Journal. The Menlo Park-based company is developing its own app for set-top boxes, including Apple TV.

Facebook has been considering a connected-TV app for a few years, but has now made it a top priority along with its other video initiatives, per the Journal. In addition to the app, the company is also moving forward with acquiring and funding original programming from media companies and individual digital stars, according to Variety. Ricky Van Veen, Facebook’s head of global creative strategy, is spearheading the effort after joining the company last year from CollegeHumor.

The moves out of both companies emphasize the importance of original content as they take on Netflix, Amazon and even Google’s YouTube — all which have made significant investments in programming. A report from The Wall Street Journal last month said Apple will aim for high-end original content, similar to award-nominated shows such such as HBO’s “Westworld” or Netflix’s “Stranger Things.”

A few hit shows for Apple could encourage people to continue to purchase Apple devices and shell out for its subscription services. Apple reported on Tuesday that its services are its fastest-growing business, per TechCrunch.

Facebook’s strategy has more to do with advertising, with the company looking for new ways bring traditional TV marketing dollars to its platform. Last week, the social media giant updated its algorithm to reward producers of longer videos. If Facebook can increase users’ watch time on the site and on television screens, it can bring in more advertisers.

Facebook users were already watching 100 million hours of video per day on the platform in 2016, per Recode. The company stands to generate $3.8 billion in revenue from video advertising this year, triple its expected take in 2015, according to Variety.



How Steve Jobs Saved Apple and Nike With One Piece of Advice

When Nike named Mark Parker their CEO in 2006, one of the first things Parker did was call Apple CEO Steve Jobs for business advice.

It might not have seemed it, but at the time Nike was struggling.

Yes, they had a successful brand. But they were failing to fit their digital strategy into their line of literally hundreds of thousands of products.

During their call, Steve Jobs gave one piece of advice that stuck with Parker:


“Nike makes some of the best products in the world. Products that you lust after. But you also make a lot of crap. Just get rid of the crappy stuff and focus on the good stuff.”— Steve Jobs

“He was absolutely right,” said Parker. “We had to edit.”

Instead of going into another product line for technology, Nike stuck to what they did best while partnering with Apple. The result was Nike+, reportedly one of the most successful Nike campaigns ever.

Steve Jobs didn’t just give advice, he lived it.

Jobs was fired from Apple but returned as the company was floundering in 1997. His first order of business? Cut.

By the end of that year, Jobs had killed almost 70 percent of Apple’s products.  A year later, the company had gone from losses of $1.04 billion to a $309 million profit.

Jobs saw Apple as distracted by opportunities. And while opportunities seem innocent enough, we often forget the commitments that come with them: Energy, time, and money.

Why focusing on one thing is so hard

I know I’m guilty of taking on too many things at once.

For one, our culture teaches us to go after multiple opportunities. Not just one.

When the word priority came into the English language in the 1400s it was singular. It meant the very first thing. Not things.

According to New York Times best-selling author Greg McKeown’s book Essentialism, the word ‘priority’ stayed singular for five hundred years until we made it plural in the 1900s.

We can see proof of the acceptance of priorities versus a priority by looking at Google’s Ngram Viewer, a tool that analyzes word usage in printed books dating back to 1500.

The usage of the word ‘priorities’ in text was pretty much zero until around 1950. Then something happened.

“Illogically, we reasoned that by changing the word we could bend reality. Somehow we would now be able to have multiple “first” things”, McKeown says.

Take that meeting. Go to that event because you ‘never know’. Our psychology pushes us too. The fear of missing out is powerful. We don’t want someone else to grab our opportunities.

It seems counterintuitive that shutting down opportunities would be the best way to build something great, but turning them down in exchange for focus is exactly what’s required. Especially today.

Focus trumps opportunity: Why doing one thing well works

With the floodgates of the internet permanently thrown open, we’re drowning in options and information when all our brains want is something simple.

If you can tap into that simple, focused message, you’ll stand out. Apple (under Jobs) spent its first 3 years selling only one product: the Apple 1. Only after nailing that first product did they move on. It’s rare to build one thing well. As Steve Jobs said, “Apple is a $30 billion company, yet we’ve got less than 30 major products. I don’t know if that’s ever been done before.”

By focusing on less, you give yourself the time to build a product that solves a problem in an incredible way. When your company’s energy and resources are spread too thin, you can’t help but solve problems at a high level. You don’t have the attention so you build something that’s good enough.

But there’s too much competition to build anything that is only good enough.

At Crew we help companies find acclaimed designers and developers to work with.

Early on we thought about working with other types of professionals, like writers, but quickly realized the price that came along with adding that one word to our website: new marketing, a new sales approach, and new processes. On top of that, we’d make it less clear what we offer.

I’m still tempted by opportunities but I’ve learned the importance of focusing on the right ones. One thing I’ve done to help with this is make a ‘no’ list where I list every tempting ‘opportunity’ we say ‘no’ to today.


How Steve Jobs Saved Apple and Nike With One Piece of Advice

Apple’s EPIC iPhone 8 Detailed In Full: Release Date, Specs & Prices

Apple iPhone 8 : Apple has always been a benchmark in making the smartest phones and immunizing them with lots of features and quality material. The next sensation in the market is said to be the  Apple iPhone 8, Tim Cook himself said that: Don’t expect much from the iPhone 7 because iPhone 8 will create a real revolution and they are already planning and building it to revolutionize the future of smartphones.

Talking about the recent graphics, We just saw that Apple iPhone 7 and Apple iPhone 7 Plus! The Jet Black edition was a real show stopper and it has received immense love from the apple users. No, Doubt iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus were both very impressive pieces. Apple got everyone in utter shock by bringing out the new Rose Gold color that this trend was followed by every other smartphone company.

Here revealing you everything about the coming beast iPhone 8.

Apple iPhone 8 Expected Features

  • Edge to edge display ( Described Below)
  • OLED Display
  • Faster A12 Processor (As A11 is coming in iPhone 7s )
  • Glass Body
  • No Physical Home Button
  • Wireless Charging
  • 4K Display

Apple iPhone 8 Specifications

Apple is planning to bring something Unique and Efficient like never before. As per rumors, the brand is working on 10 Different Prototypes. It is very early to clearly suggest what we’re going to experience next year! But before the release of iPhone 8, Apple is preparing to launch iPhone 7s and iPhone 7s+. So there is a plenty of time left for iPhone 8.  Apple has been always known for the quality of the hardware they provide in iPhone’s. I don’t think so any other companies can compete in terms of hardware provided in the iPhone 8.  Moving forward these are the specs which are expected to be featured in Apple iPhone 8.

Rumors suggest that brand may come up with the Radical Re-Design in the shape of edge to edge display. It means, there will be No Bezels; not even on top or bottom.

The display will be Home to Touch ID Fingerprint Sensor and a Selfie Shooter. If we are talking about revolution, the Apple may get rid of a home button. This will be possible with embedding camera and touch ID system directly into the display screen. Jony Ive always has been passionate about making iPhone that will consist of a single glass sheet. Moreover, for the wireless charging system, glass is essential! But for now we may only see a hint of glass in the body and the base will most probably be metallic.

The idea of the Edge to Edge Display looks valid. But we are not confirmed if the display size will surpass traditional range or the size of iPhone will be reduced to go with the screen. Most likely, we will see iPhone 8 with a 5.5 inch or a slightly larger display screen. Apple will use latest flexible OLED technology instead of LCD, that is necessary for enhanced contrast ratio and vibrant colors.

There is a lot of possibility that Apple would be trying to bring the edge to edge display in iPhone 8. So this would be a kind of revolution in smartphone’s display’s.

I don’t know about you, but I fell hard for glass body that was used in iPhone 4. So after the Jet Black addition, It is highly predictable that Apple will come up with at least one model with glass body, as Catcher Technology has claimed.

According to analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, if there will be a use of glass, that will be around stainless steel or aluminum framework.

Speed and efficiency are the words that will define iPhone 8, thanks to a 10-nanometer A12 chip. Rumors also suggest that newer flagship will come up with the long range wireless charging system. There will be biometric additions of facial or iris scanning. As for the dual lens camera, both lenses will have a feature of Optical Image Stabilization!

Quality always comes with a price. That’s why OLED iPhone 8 will be sold as the premium model. Apple is also planning to launch models with flat display (4.7″, 5″ & 5.5″). Although the estimations may look fancy and charming, still we don’t have confirmation for any of them! We can’t tell anything exactly about sizes, materials or configurations but history is a proof that our estimation has never ditched us or you!

We can conclude one thing,

Apple will show up with Three Glass Models. The unit with OLED Display will be ranked as the premium version with the Bezel-Less screen. The brand will also launch 4.7  and 5.5 inch iPhones with the aluminum body!

Apple iPhone 8 Features

The stacked features of iphone 8 Features are:

  1. 5.5-6 inch Super OLED Display
  2. Primary Camera : 14 MP
  3. Secondary (Front) Camera : 4 MP
  4. Internal Memory: 32/64/128/256 GB
  5. RAM: 4 GB
  6. Battery: Non-removable Li-Ion 3000 mAh battery

iPhone 8 Specifications in detail:

Camera:  According to Japanese site Mac Otakara, the high-end 5.5-inch iPhone Apple is planning on introducing new vertical dual camera arrangement instead of a horizontal dual camera system. Mac Otakara‘s information is sourced from a Taiwanese supplier and has not yet been corroborated by a second source so this is still not confirmed.

It’s not clear why Apple would switch from a horizontal arrangement to a vertical arrangement, but the need to fit two cameras into a smaller body could be a factor and there might be some other reason too behind this as the sources are not confirmed.

Processor: TSMC has started designing the 10 nanometer A11 chip. According to sources, the initial stages have been completed. So chances of seeing A11 chip in next iPhone ( That is iPhone 7s) are very high! TSMC will forward the A12 chips to Apple in the first quarter of 2018. Secondly, it has confirmed orders for this chip. We are sure about one thing, Apple has the tradition of making efficient and powerful hardware. A12 chip is more of a custom instead of the exception for the company. Of course, this smaller chip is more powerful and energy efficient!

Wireless Charging: Wireless charging is nothing new to the market. But Apple’s idea is focused on long range wireless charging technology. This technology is going to be superior to current methods because you won’t have to stay close to the wireless charger! Cool! The idea sounds awesome, but Apple is facing multiple obstacles in this regard. For instance, more power is needed when if the distance is increased between transmitter and receiver. If the iPhone is far away from charging source, the battery will charge up slowly!

To overcome all the obstacles, Apple has hired a team of expert engineers. If we take wireless AirPods into account, the idea of long range wireless charging seems feasible!

In this regard, rumors of glass body seem to be true. Because glass supports wireless charging. It works smoothly in the absence of aluminum casing! Apple is already seeking a supply for chips that support wireless charging. Interestingly, the rumors suggest that charging may be done with external casing or iPhone accessory!

Foxconn, Apple’s partner is checking different wireless charging modules for next iPhone. Right now, we can’t say will it be up to the mark or not!

We heard from sources that Apple may collaborate with Energous! This company has manufactured long-range wireless charging solution known as WattUp!

Some Other Important Features:

Biometrics: Ming-Chi Kuo, KGI Securities analyst have strongly predicted Apple’s plans, including an iPhone with biometric features of facial recognition or iris scanning. Kuo has not talked about the scope of these features. But we can assume that these features will help in accessing phone or improving the security! According to Asian supply chain, for iris scanning, we have to wait until 2018. So, we are not sure about experiencing iris scanning in 2017!

Apple has collaborated with Taiwan-based company Xintec for scanning ships. Xintec will start production on this component in 2017 hopefully! As far storage is concerned, we may have an iPhone with NAND flash memory. After having an iPad Pro with 256 GB storage, it is possible to own an iPhone with same capacities!

Haptic Engine: Apple is planning to bring an iPhone with an enhanced haptic engine, as per Japanese site Nikkei. The high-performance motor is needed to produce complex tactile vibrations, as they are essential if Apple wants to eliminate home button. Such vibrations denote key triggers including confirmation of Touch ID payment or unlocking of the phone! Both triggers are tied to a physical home button in latest iPhone!

Camera: Considering Kuo’s predictions, a 4.7-inch iPhone will have a single camera. While premium 5.5-inch model will feature a dual lens camera with unspecified size! In upcoming models, both wide angle and telephoto lenses can have optical image stabilization. We have experienced this technology in iPhone 7 Plus with wide angle lens only!

Apple iPhone 8 Price

iPhone 7 is expected in the price range of around 1099 $ to 1499 $. So the Price of iPhone 8 would be little higher and the price of the device. Apple iphone 8 price would be around 1199 $ to 1599$.

The price is pretty high and hard to afford. So we can’t say something officially about the price now. We will have to wait for the company to say!

Updates and Coming Rumors:

  • Glass Body with a little Metal Frame: It is to be considered that Apple is appealingly  trying to make a whole glass frame for iPhone which is unbreakable and is more powerful that Android’s Gorilla Glass.
  • Touch ID is to change the frame to eliminate the Home Button and make it full of screen complete display.


Sharing is a sexy way to show that, You care : As we said earlier, We are going to cover all the latest updates on Apple iphone 8. So, stay tuned with us for the latest updates on upcoming iPhone 8 Smartphone. Also follow us on Facebook, twitter and Google+.


Google Play and iOS apps demand surges in India and China

India leapfrogged both the US and Brazil to become the nation that downloaded the most apps from Google’s Play Store, according to analytics firm App Annie.

It also claimed that China became the biggest source of revenue for Apple’s iOS App Store for the first time.

However, the BBC understands that Apple’s own figures contradict this.

They suggest China still lagged behind the US and Japan last year. The tech firm has, however, not commented on the 2016 Retrospective report.

A spokeswoman for Google also declined to comment.

Google and Apple both take a cut of software sales and in-app fees from third-parties that publish on their respective platforms.

Their differing successes are explained by the fact that Google Play does not operate in China, while iPhones have a much smaller share of the Indian market than they do in most other countries.

San Francisco-based App Annie’s research is widely used by app publishers and others involved in the digital industries.

“We are always confident with the data we release in our reports, attributing the estimates to a veritable degree to accuracy,” a spokeswoman said.

In total, it said more than 90 billion apps were downloaded via the two stores over the year.

Shopping apps

The popularity of Google Play downloads in India is linked to the fact that the nation became the world’s second largest smartphone market in 2016, according to the United Nations, based on the number of people with mobile data subscriptions.

Only China has more users, but because of local restrictions they mostly download Android apps from marketplaces run by local tech firms such as Baidu, Tencent and Huawei.

The report indicates more than six billion apps were downloaded in India from Google Play over the 12 months, allowing the nation to narrowly beat the US’s tally.

“An Indian smartphone user has more shopping apps on their phone than a UK user,” App Annie’s Paul Barnes told the BBC.

“Social and messaging apps have [also] been exceptionally popular – WhatsApp in particular is one of the most widely used apps in the country.

“This has created a fairly unique app market in India, where gaming is slightly less dominant than we’ve seen in other emerging markets, such as China.”

Mr Barnes added that India was likely to maintain its Play Store lead for some time to come and could top 20 billion downloads by 2020.

“I think if you look at the fact that smartphone penetration is still only 30% in India, then we expect to see that growth in downloads accelerate.”

Westward bound

App Annie’s claim that China had overtaken the US as the biggest revenue source for the iOS App Store was based in part by its success in the final three months of the year.

More than $2bn (£1.7bn) was spent locally in the last quarter, the report said, which compared to about $1.5bn (£1.2bn) in the US for the same period.

“There’s been a real surge in 2016, which has been something of a surprise,” Mr Barnes acknowledged.

“With China, local games are particularly popular. The companies NetEase and Tencent have done incredibly well.”

The report highlighted the Fantasy Westward Journey series – role-playing titles based on a 15-year-old PC game – as being particularly successful. They have generated more than $800m (£664m) for NetEase in China since it released the first title in March 2015.

The report added that Tencent’s QQ social network also made substantial gains in 2016. Its games are free to play, but the firm sells weapons and other virtual goods within them, as well as making money from adverts.

App Annie acknowledged that Japanese iPhone owners still spent more on average than any other nationality.

But Mr Barnes said Chinese users were catching up quickly.

“China has actually increased per person spending on games 10 times since 2014,” he said.

In total, Apple and Google’s app stores generated $35bn (£29bn) in revenue in 2016, according to the report, representing a 40% gain on 2015.



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