A Pricier Apple TV Is Expected

Posted by Kirhat | Wednesday, September 02, 2015 | | 0 comments »

Apple TV Pricing
A much more expensive Apple TV could be expected after a 9to5Mac report revealed that the new versions will go for either US$ 200 or US$ 150 by October. An Apple spokesperson declined to confirm if this claim is true or not.

Apple is expected to announce a new version of its streaming box at a 9 September 2015 press event in San Francisco. The new Apple TV will feature more powerful hardware and a revamped remote control, according to a number of reports. The device is also expected to come with a full-blown app store similar to the one available to iPhones and iPads, which will allow publishers to bring many more services to Apple TV.

Some reports even have indicated that the new Apple TV will be optimized for gaming. Techcrunch reported that the device will have a Wii-like remote control that makes use of a gyroscope to enable more complex interactions with video games.

The device will also be tightly integrated with Siri, according to 9to5Mac, allowing users to control it directly with their voice.

However, all of these new features apparently made it necessary for Apple to go with a higher price, which is why the company may keep the existing version of the Apple TV around as an entry-level model. The existing Apple TV currently sells for just US$ 69, and likely won’t have access to the upcoming app store or any of the other new features.

Initially absent from both models will be Apple’s TV streaming service. The company originally planned to launch a competitor to the cable bundle this fall, but has since postponed the launch. The 9to5Mac report says that the pay TV service will eventually be available on both the new premium-priced Apple TV as well as the existing entry-level model when it becomes available some time in 2016.

It is worth noting that rumors on the price of an unannounced device always have to be taken with a grain of salt. One could even argue that Apple could benefit from a US$ 200 price point rumor if it manages to launch a significantly lower-priced device.

However, 9to5Mac has developed a reputation for having excellent sources, which have helped the site to repeatedly reveal unannounced details about upcoming Apple products.

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Retail Packaging of iPhone 6s Leaked

Posted by Kirhat | Tuesday, September 01, 2015 | | 0 comments »

iPhone 6s Box
Sometimes all it takes is a hint here and hint there, but sometimes those hints can be found in unlikely paces, like in a packaging box.

Last year, a photo of iPhone 6's retail packaging was dismissed when it first leaked. After after sometime, many people realized that it is indeed genuine and it revealed many of the features that Apple users should have expected from iPhone 6.

No matter if it was just a box because the retail packaging usually reveals a few important things about Apple's upcoming new iPhones and a new leak has offered one more revelation about iPhone 6s.

If the packaging pictured is indeed genuine, Apple’s next-generation iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus will each include smaller batteries than their predecessors. This could be troubling news on the surface, but optimizations in iOS 9 coupled with next-generation chips that are far more energy-efficient will undoubtedly result in the same or better battery life than the current iPhone lineup.

iPhone 6s Retail Box
Beyond the battery, the photo on the top of the box showed a koi fish on the iPhone’s display, which is a good indication that the new phones will support animated wallpapers similar to the Apple Watch’s motion faces.

Moving on, a new photo of the packaging posted by Nowhereelse editor Steve Hemmerstoffer disproves a rumor that many were hoping would pan out.

It appears as though Apple’s next-generation iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus will still include just 16GB at the entry level. Earlier rumors suggested Apple would up these models to 32GB of memory each, but everyone has seen those rumors come and go before.

Apple will unveil its next-generation iPhones during a press conference on September 9th.

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New Connectivity Features of iPhone 6s

Posted by Kirhat | Monday, August 31, 2015 | | 0 comments »

There is no doubt that next month's star of the show in Apple's annual event is the next-generation iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus. The company may be planning to also launch eight new products and show them on stage during its next press conference in early September, but the anticipation will undoubtedly be on how the new iPhones will perform.

A steady flow of leaks has built slowly and painted a fairly clear picture of Apple’s next-generation iPhone lineup, with the most recent report having been a potential bombshell: supposed benchmark test results for the iPhone 6s show huge performance improvements compared to last year’s model.

Now, another potential leak to toss into the mix of hundreds of unconfirmed rumors.

A new report from Digitimes may give everyone another peek inside Apple’s upcoming new iPhone 6s ahead of its release. The Taiwan-based news site has a mixed track record when it comes to revealing companies' plans, but its sources inside chip makers have often been accurate in the past.

According to the report, Apple’s new iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s will continue to use Qualcomm modems for connectivity. The report states that Qualcomm will supply Apple with 100 percent of the modem chips that will be used in the upcoming new iPhones, contradicting an earlier note from an analyst at Northland Capital Markets, who claimed Intel had won partial production of the next-gen iPhone’s modem chips.

Digitimes states that the Qualcomm modems that are being used in Apple’s iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus are 20nm chips, and they are being fabricated in partnership with TSMC. Interestingly, however, the report claims that Intel could be awarded partial modem orders for 2017’s iPhone models — presumably the iPhone 7s and iPhone 7s Plus — as Apple looks to further diversify its supply chain.

In the meantime, Apple’s iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus are expected to launch on 18th September this year, following their unveiling on 9th September.

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Animated Wallpaper for iPhone 6s

Posted by Kirhat | Sunday, August 30, 2015 | | 0 comments »

iPhone Animation
There will be one very obvious thing that will separate it from its predecessor, animated wallpaper.

Apple Watch users who are in love with the Motion watch face — the one where an animation of a flower, butterfly or jellyfish pops up on the screen each time they check the time — should know that Apple is reportedly bringing the same kind of animated UI to the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus.

"For the new iPhone, we are told the types of motion wallpapers range from sets of animated fish from a koi pond to colorful arrays of smoke," wrote 9to5Mac's reliable Mark Gurman.

Animated wallpapers have been seen by two sources who have used internal iPhone 6s prototypes at Apple, but the sources also warned that the feature might not necessarily make it into the final iOS 9 build for the iPhone 6s.

The feature is supposed to be a neat addition to iOS 9 that would further differentiate the iPhone 6s family from its predecessors. This seems to indicate that the animated wallpapers will be available only on the new iPhones, and current owners of iOS 9-compatible devices won’t receive them when iOS 9 rolls out.

The report seems to support the theory that a recent image leak showing an iPhone 6s Plus retail box with a koi fish indeed points to motion wallpaper support. According to 9to5Mac, the iPhone 6s animations will include sets of animated fish from a koi pond and colorful arrays of smoke, meaning that leaked picture might actually show the real thing.

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Major Apple Event on 9 September 2015

Posted by Kirhat | Saturday, August 29, 2015 | | 0 comments »

Hint from Siri
Apple made it official on 27 August after it invited journalists that they will have a major event on 9 September 2015, where it is expected to unveil new iPhones and potentially a new version of its Apple TV set-top box.

The email invitation includes a colorful Apple logo with the sentence "Hey Siri, give us a hint," referring to Apple's popular digital voice assistant.

It should be noted that the company traditionally announces its new iPhones in September. And this time, they are widely expected to unveil the iPhone 6S and the iPhone 6 Plus S. Typically, the company launches upgraded versions to existing phones under the "s" range.

Media reports have indicated that Apple is preparing for the largest initial production run for its next iPhones by the end of the year. The new variant of smartphones are also said to feature Force Touch technology, which can distinguish between a light tap and deep press.

Cross Research analyst Shannon Cross said she was also expecting a faster processor on iPhones.

"We assume that they may come out with a new iPad at the event as well," Cross added.

When users posed the question in the invitation to Siri on their iPhones, Siri threw back responses such as "You're cute when you're desperate for information" and "You'll have to wait until Sept. 9. I bet you were one of those kids who snuck downstairs to open presents early, weren't you?"

The event will be held at 10:00 A.M. PT in the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium in San Francisco, which can hold about 7,000 people.

According to BGR, Apple did not immediately respond to requests for more details on the event, but it comes at a particularly crucial time.

The company's stock has taken a thumping during a major Wall Street sell-off amid concerns over Apple's long-term business prospects, especially in China. Smartphone sales are saturated in the United States and Europe, and there is mounting evidence the same is happening in China, the world's biggest smartphone market.

As more people in China buy replacement phones, and competition intensifies with low-cost, Chinese smartphone makers, Apple and Samsung are under increasing pressure. Indeed, the smartphone market logged its slowest growth in two years, according to market researcher Gartner.

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Is The New Apple TV Worth The Wait?

Posted by Kirhat | Friday, August 28, 2015 | | 0 comments »

Apple TV
The anxiety had been building for several years now, but it is not certain anymore if an Apple TV service would still matter amid the rise of "skinny bundles" from a host of other media and telecom companies.

In the prelude to Apple's World Wide Developers Conference (WWDC) last June, speculation again surged that the company might finally introduce the long-awaited, oft-discussed TV product so many desire from the Mac maker. Unfortunately, nothing materialized.

The elusive over-the-top streaming-TV product has yet to be relaunched, although it appears still very much in the works. Unfortunately for those who hoped Apple might roll out the service as part of its customary fall product launch cycle, recent reports claim that Apple's streaming service will remain off the shelf until next year.

According to Andrew Tonner of The Motley Crew, Apple originally intended to launch its television streaming service during its upcoming September iPhone launch event to coincide with the debut of the fall TV season. However, two main issues reportedly kept Apple and its TV-content partners from reaching terms on an acceptable timetable.

One impediment that should surprise no one is cost.

According to reporting from Bloomberg, Apple and its content partners remain far apart regarding the eventual cost of the over-the-top service and the number of channels it will comprise. The same Bloomberg report claims that Apple hopes to charge roughly US$ 40 a month for its service.

In contrast, the major programmers believe new entrants into the paid-TV market should pay more, not less, than the average American's monthly cable bill for the right to compete for subscribers - a so-called "pay-to-play" logic. Users could end up seeing negotiating posturing on the part of the content providers, but given the chasm-like difference between the two parties, the current impasse makes perfect sense.

The second hindrance to Apple's eventual TV service lies on the technical side of Apple's business. Apparently, Apple still needs to make significant investments in its own data-warehousing infrastructure and delivery capabilities to fully support an over-the-top streaming service at the level of uptime consumers now expect. From a technological perspective, a fully operational content service such as Apple's looming offering must store the content it serves as close to consumers as possible to diminish lags that can occur if content traverses long distances before reaching its final destination.

Currently, Apple operates four main data centers in the U.S. Three of these centers reside in the west - California, Nevada, and Oregon -- which could make supporting regular content consumption in major Midwestern and East Coast media markets particularly troubling.

Reports indicate that Apple is already taking steps to alleviate this issue, and rare is the occasion when Apple lacks the technological mettle to execute on one of its strategic initiatives.

The recent reports documenting Apple's TV-related headaches force users to wonder whether Apple's TV service will really matter, assuming that it ever arrives.

Consider that TV subscriptions declined for the first time ever last year. Furthermore, with the emergence of over-the-top "skinny bundles" from the likes of DISH Network and Sony and non-cable alternatives such as Netflix, the cable industry seems likely to evolve in the coming year. Apple, with its massive installed user base, could help reverse the trend in short order. However, if Apple must make significant concessions in terms of either price or number of channels included to coalesce enough industry buy-in to eventually launch the service, will the somewhat compromised service be a genuine draw to consumers?

Though alternatives such as Netflix and Amazon.com's Prime Instant Video can help draw some consumers away from cable, the cable industry and content providers still find themselves in far more defensible strategic positions than the recording industry did when Apple negotiated the deals that lead to iTunes. In fact, the resounding success of iTunes probably strengthens the resolve of the content providers to not grant Apple overly generous terms for its service. In this sense, the historical legacy of iTunes casts a shadow over Apple's current negotiations that threaten to water down its TV efforts to the point of irrelevance.

There's a fair degree of conjecture involved here. Apple's negotiating hand could in fact be stronger than current reports suggest, or its current delays could owe more to its infrastructure woes than to content problems. It also bears noting that regardless of its eventual launch date, Apple's TV product probably won't meaningfully affect the company's financial performance one way or another. Either way, it appears we'll need to wait at least another year before we find out whether Apple's long-awaited over-the-top television service can deliver on the promise so many believe it offers.

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