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May the 4th be with you: Apple offers collection of iOS...

Today, 05:17 PM

Posted By x-bot in iDevice News

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To celebrate Star Wars Day— yes, that’s why everyone keeps saying “May the 4th be with you” today— Apple is offering a number of discounts on apps and in-app purchase content from Disney, Konami, and others.

Below we’ve put together links for all of the Star Wars App Store content on sale today, including both Apple’s iOS collection and other iPhone, iPad, and Mac titles discounted for the occasion:

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iOS apps on sale:

Mac apps on sale:

In-app purchase: Special prices:

In-app purchase: Bonuses:

You’ll find more discounted Star Wars apparel, media, memorabilia and just about everything else on 9to5Toys.

All these Star Wars apps are at limited-time prices. May the 4th be with you. #StarWarsDay tw.appstore.com/StarWarsDay amp.twimg.com/v/3e9f910b-098…


App Store (@AppStore) May 04, 2015

Filed under: Apps Tagged: App Store, Apps, Deals, discounts, iOS, iPad, iPhone, Mac, may the 4th be with you, sale, Star Wars Day 378095 378095 378095 378095 378095 378095 378095 b.gif?host=9to5mac.com&blog=22754319&pos

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GE to Create Intelligent LED Lightbulbs Compatible with A...

Today, 05:06 PM

Posted By x-bot in iDevice News
GE today announced plans to take advantage of Apple's HomeKit platform, creating intelligent, color-charging LED lightbulbs that will interface with iOS devices. GE's HomeKit-compatible LED lightbulbs will include GE's Align technology, which aims to improve sleep through controlling blue light output at critical times.

During the day, the Align technology is able to mimic daylight to suppress the production of melatonin for a more awake feeling, adding bright blue tones to white light, and at night, blue light is reduced to promote melatonin production and avoid disrupting circadian sleep rhythms.

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"As we continue to grow our infrastructure business by connecting our brilliant industrial machines to the Internet, it is important that consumers experience connected things in easy-to-use, everyday ways. Lighting is how many first experiment with the idea of a smart home, and our insights show that consumers want the ability to control lighting from anywhere, automate lighting and pair lighting with other devices--like sensors, thermostats and door locks," says Comstock. "We're excited to announce our support for HomeKit as it will bring a seamless, intuitive user experience using Siri and superior quality of light from America's most trusted lighting brand for more than a century."
HomeKit is Apple's home control platform that will allow Apple devices to control various connected smart home products like lightbulbs, garage doors, locks, fans, thermostats, power outlets, and more. Users will be able to give Siri commands to perform actions that will control physical objects, such as "shut off the lights" or "close the garage," with the Apple TV serving as a home automation hub.

Through HomeKit, the GE bulbs will integrate with other HomeKit-connected devices and will be able to be controlled by voice using Siri. Lightbulbs will be available for individual control and can also be organized into groups for room-wide lighting scenes.

GE's upcoming lighting project will be a direct competitor to the Philips hue line of lights, which also allow consumers to choose lighting colors based on mood and control lights with their iOS devices. Philips is also one of Apple's HomeKit partners and plans to have its hue lighting system integrate with HomeKit.

Apple's HomeKit hardware specifications were finalized in October of 2014, further paving the way for the first HomeKit devices to come to market. In January, Apple said it was "excited" about the growing number of partners bringing HomeKit products to market. Some of those upcoming products include the iDevices smart plug, Elgato's range of connected home devices, and the Schlage Sense smart lock.

We still don't know when HomeKit-enabled devices will be widely available for purchase, but GE says that its lightbulbs will be available later in 2015.mf.gif


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iPhone-loving Manny Pacquiao gives Samsung a jab

Today, 05:02 PM

Posted By x-bot in iDevice News
Manny Pacquiao is expected to have made $80 million off the very boring ‘fight of the Century’ this past weekend just off the ticket sales. Pac-Man made a few extra million on the side too by becoming the latest iPhone-loving celebritymf.gif


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6 smart ways to protect your precious Apple Watch

Today, 05:00 PM

Posted By x-bot in iDevice News
Some purists will recoil in horror at the idea of covering up their new Apple Watch in any way, but based on the broken Apple Watches we’re already seeing, perhaps a little protection isn’t such a bad idea. Whether youmf.gif


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Apple’s aggressive music ambitions draw DOJ scrutiny

Today, 04:37 PM

Posted By x-bot in iDevice News
Apple’s big Beats Music relaunch might be revealed next month at WWDC, and Apple is trying to clear a path through Spotify and YouTube by strong-arming labels into killing freemium music services. The aggressive tactics have triggered the Department ofmf.gif


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Droplr launches new Mac and iOS apps, introduces support...

Today, 04:35 PM

Posted By x-bot in iDevice News
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File sharing service Droplr announced today that it is launching new versions of both of its apps alongside a freemium account option. Users will now be able to sign up and use Droplr to share large files for free, but will only be able to store their files for one week. After that, the links will expire. Users subscribed the Droplr Pro service will be able to keep their files forever, and will get access to other settings to customize the file sharing process.

Along with the new account types comes a family of redesigned applications to support them. The iOS app, seen above, has been reworked with support for the latest iOS features, such as sharing extensions. When you upload a file through the iOS app, it will immediately be pushed to the Mac app, or vice versa.

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A “share screenshot” feature will automatically find the screenshots in your photo library and list them in chronological order for quick uploading. Users will also now be able to upgrade to a Droplr Pro account directly in the app through an in-app purchase. The app will run across all iOS devices, including the latest iPhones and iPads.

The Mac application has also been updated to support the new freemium accounts, screencast recording with video and GIF export, the ability to generate embed codes for your files, and more.

Users who want to save some money on their Droplr Pro accounts will be able to refer friends to the service and earn $10 credits toward a subscription. Each annual subscription is $99.99, while a monthly option is also available for $9.99.

Annual Droplr Pro subscriptions will cost only $59.99 for the next month as part of a launch special the company is running.

You can download Droplr for iOS from the iTunes Store, and Droplr for Mac on the Mac App Store. Both apps are available for free.


Filed under: Apps Tagged: Droplr, File Sharing 378069 378069 378069 378069 378069 378069 378069 b.gif?host=9to5mac.com&blog=22754319&pos

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Save 92% on the Interactive Coding Bootcamp and score you...

Today, 04:15 PM

Posted By x-bot in iDevice News
You’re just 12 weeks away from a new career as a programmer with the Interactive Coding Bootcamp, now just $39 at Cult of Mac Deals. This comprehensive training program covers everything you need to know about back-end and front-end development.mf.gif


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9to5Toys Lunch Break: Star Wars May 4th Deals, WiFi Laser...

Today, 04:02 PM

Posted By x-bot in iDevice News

Keep up with the best gear and deals on the web by signing up for the 9to5Toys Newsletter. Also, be sure to check us out on: TwitterRSS FeedFacebookGoogle+ and Safari push notifications.

Today’s can’t miss deals:

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Star Wars Day deals & freebies: Darth Vader and Son Kindle book $2, LEGO kits from $8, much more

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Daily Deals: Samsung Xpress Mono Laser Printer $50, Acer 27″ G-SYNC Gaming Monitor $400, Kindles, more

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Your choice $330 shipped each: Apple iPad mini 2 WiFi+ Cellular 64GB in Space Gray or iPad Air 16GB WiFi

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Review: iOttie’s Active Edge bike mount safely puts your iPhone front and center, exclusive 30% promo codeMore new gear from today:

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Price Drop: Omaker M4 Splashproof/droppable Bluetooth 4.0 Speaker with NFC: $20 Prime shipped (Orig. $70)

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Canon Refurbished Digital Cameras: SL1 (body only) $300 (Orig. $550), Rebel T5 w/ lens kit $300 (Orig. $440), more

Amazon Gold Box: T-fal 12-Piece Hard Anodized Nonstick Cookware Set $80 shipped (Orig. $200) http://t.co/5QG5sje1kc pic.twitter.com/BbVWesHquI

— 9to5Toys (@9to5toys) May 4, 2015

More deals still alive:

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Apple 11-inch MacBook Air 1.6GHz/4GB/128GB (newest): $750 shipped (Reg. $899)unu-dx-protective-iphone-6-charging-caseanker-premium-iphone-6-extended-battery-iPhone 6 MFi battery cases: UNU DX 3,000mAh $50 (Orig. $70), Anker Premium 3,100mAh $30 (Orig. $70), moreNew products & more:

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nexpaq’s iPhone 6 case enables killer features to be added and removed on-the-fly


Filed under: Tips and Tricks Tagged: 9to5Toys, Amazon Gold Box, app deals, apple deals, coupon codes, Daily Deals, eBay Daily Deals, free apps, free shipping, iOS apps, ipad air, iPad mini, Kindle readers, Lego, May the Fourth, May the Fourth Be With You, Star Wars, video games 378076 378076 378076 378076 378076 378076 378076 b.gif?host=9to5mac.com&blog=22754319&pos

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Microsoft Updates Windows 10 Emoji to Resemble Apple'...

Today, 03:56 PM

Posted By x-bot in iDevice News
Microsoft has included several redesigned emoji in Windows 10 that resemble Apple's emoji found on iPhone, iPad and Mac, including a wide range of faces and even the "sassy" information desk person (via Emojipedia). The update also includes skin tone modifiers, the middle finger, a new haircut emoji and more, although country flags are still not supported on the upcoming operating system.

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Windows 10 is currently available in beta for developers and is expected to be released to the public in July. The latest version of Windows will deliver a unified experience and platform integration that will make it easy to put one device down and continue where you left off on another device. The software update will be free for Windows 8.1 and Windows 7 users for the first year.

Many emoji character sets have been incorporated into Unicode, resulting in the icons being standardized across multiple platforms such as iOS, Android, OS X and Windows. The exact appearance of emojis is then left up to companies like Apple, Microsoft, Google and Twitter to decide. In this case, Microsoft's redesigned emoji and the addition of skin tone modifiers is more uniform with Apple's collection.mf.gif


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Review: Urban Armor Gear, the military-spec iPhone &...

Today, 02:25 PM

Posted By x-bot in iDevice News
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Scuff marks created during my own drop-tests …

The problem with buying a protective case for an iPhone or iPad is that you never know for sure just how protective it really is until it is needed to do its job. Even a drop-test video only shows you how well the case worked with that one drop on that one occasion.

The Urban Armor Gear (UAG from now on) iPhone and iPad cases are a little different. They are certified to a military standard known as MIL-STD-810G 516.6. In this test, a device is dropped from a height of four feet – the typical fall for a device dropped while using it – a total of 26 times. The tests cover falls into each corner, the face and back. To pass, the device must remain fully functional afterwards, with no damage at all to the screen.

This isn’t the same as no damage at all, of course, but it certainly lends confidence. And if that weren’t enough, UAG decided to demonstrate its confidence in the case by dropping an iPhone from space – video below … 

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Look & feel

The best way I can describe the look of these cases is to say that they very much appear to be designed with military use in mind. They look rugged and basic. The fake bolts look perhaps a little tacky, and alignment of switches and buttons is very slightly vague (though everything works perfectly).

The rubbery feel is quite pleasant to the touch, but the biggest surprise is the weight: the iPhone case feels like it weighs nothing at all, in contrast to what you’d expect from such a tough case. I weighed it at just 30g. The iPad case weighs 360g (iPad Air 2 model), but still feels lighter than you think it ought to.

The iPhone 6 case is available in a choice of six colors: black, white, silver, blue, orange and pink. The iPad Air 2 case in black or red, and the iPad Air in any color you like as long as it’s black.

Protection

I know, I know, you just want me to get to the video, dropping it from space. UAG used a weather balloon to lift it to a height of 101,000 before the balloon burst and it fell back to earth. ‘Space’ is rather an exaggeration, the technical definition being an altitude of 50 miles according to NASA. But you can clearly see the curvature of the Earth, and it’s quite a long way to drop an iPhone, so we’ll cut them some slack. Fast-forward to 1m 25s for the actual fall.

The video is of course just a PR stunt. The iPhone would quickly reach terminal velocity if thrown out of a plane at a far lower altitude, and it lands in a rather soft-looking field, but hey, it’s fun to watch.

Since repeated drop-tests in a variety of manufacturer’s cases probably isn’t recommended treatment for any iDevice, I limited myself to my usual tactic of taping inside it a bag of coins that weigh the same just to see how the case itself stands up to drops. I didn’t succeed in doing more damage than a few scuffs.

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Inserting & removing devices

The cases are very slightly stretchy, and you simply snap – or perhaps spring, given the rubbery material – your device into the case. Insertion is easy, removal slightly fiddlier given the tight fit, but nothing to write home about.

As you can see from the photo above, the sides of the case sit a millimeter or two above the screen, and this protects the screen when the phone lands face-down. A semi-rigid plastic screen-protector is also included.

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In use

Ports remain accessible: I was able to plug in both headphone and Lightning cables without any trouble. Same with buttons and switches. Power and volume buttons are covered by rubber flaps, and work fine through them; the mute switch is exposed but well-recessed.

The iPad case has a screen cover flap, which has a simple magnetic closure. It’s basic, and a little untidy, but it works:

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The case is similarly basic when used as a stand, but again, it works.

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Conclusions

These aren’t cases for the style-conscious: they look and feel basic. But they probably are the cases to you if you are either habitually clumsy, or going to be using your iPhone or iPad in conditions where a drop is more likely – perhaps while running, cycling or similar.

Although the military-spec drop test offers no guarantees against cosmetic damage – the requirement is simply that the device remain functional afterwards – it does specify that the screen remain undamaged, and that’s the greatest risk. If the case protects against that, it’s likely the casing will also remain undamaged. Pricing seems reasonable for the degree of protection offered.

The UAG case costs $34.95 for the iPhone 6, and $49.95  for either iPad Air or iPad Air 2 from UAG’s website, with savings of between $5 and $15 available on Amazon.


Filed under: Reviews 378045 378045 378045 378045 378045 378045 378045 b.gif?host=9to5mac.com&blog=22754319&pos

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