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The Amazon Echo speaker can now also be purchased from St...

Today, 05:05 PM

Posted By x-bot in iDevice News

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People who want to purchase the Amazon Echo connected speaker now have another option besides Amazon itself. It is now for sale on the Staples website for the same price of $179.99.

Staples will be the only third-party retailer to offer the Amazon Echo for sale, but it will only be available online for now. You won't be able to walk in your local Staples retail store and purchase the speaker, at least not immediately. Aside from that, there's nothing else that Staples is doing to make its Echo listing different than Amazon's, although if you own any Staples gift cards, you can use them now to help purchase the speaker.

Check out the Amazon Echo at Staples.com ($179.99)

Check out the Amazon Echo at Amazon ($179.99)



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Apple said to be mulling its own virtual network service...

Today, 04:35 PM

Posted By x-bot in iDevice News

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Apple is said to be in talks with carriers in both the U.S. and Europe about launching a mobile virtual network operator (MVNO). An MVNO service from Apple would allow customers to purchase cellular access directly from Apple, which would lease space from existing wireless providers. Phones would switch networks automatically in order to get the best service.

From Business Insider:

Here's how an Apple MVNO will work: Instead of paying your carrier every month, you will pay Apple directly for data, calls, and texts. Apple then provides you with everything you used to get from your carrier, but the Apple SIM switches between carriers to get the best service. The telecoms companies auction capacity to Apple so it can run the service.

This would be similar to how Google's virtual network service, Project Fi, already operates. Apple's service is still reportedly in the testing phase, and if it does eventually launch, it apparently won't do so in the near future. The company could take at least five more years to launch it completely, and is said to be taking a long-term view with the potential wireless service.

Source: Business Insider



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Apple Watch launches in New Zealand, Turkey, and Russia

01 Aug 2015

Posted By x-bot in iDevice News

The Apple Watch has made its way to three new countries today, officially becoming available for purchase at Apple Stores in New Zealand, Turkey, and Russia. Apple CEO Tim Cook took to celebrate, noting that the company saw a great turnout in Istanbul for the launch:

Hello Istanbul! A great turnout for the launch of Apple Watch in Turkey today. pic.twitter.com/8J9fUxaFNi

— Tim Cook (@tim_cook) July 31, 2015

The Apple Watch originally launched on April 24 to a small set of countries. However, as the strain on supply has eased a bit, we've seen the product launch in a number of other countries over the last month or so. Earlier this month, we also learned that the Apple Watch will become available for purchase at Best Buy stores in early August for the U.S., and a week later in Canada.

If you live in one of today's launch countries and just picked up an Apple Watch, be sure to check out our ultimate guide to setting up and using the Apple Watch.



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Kodak now lets you edit, share, and print from its Moment...

Today, 03:41 PM

Posted By x-bot in iDevice News

Kodak has released an update for its Moments app, which now lets you share, edit, and print photos all from one location. No longer do you need a separate app to print using one of Kodak's Picture Kiosks, instead you can do it from the same place that you just edited that new photo. With the latest update, Kodak has added the following to its Moments app:

  • Camera and Social Media Functionalities
    • Capture a picture without leaving the app, edit and enrich images with tools and filters. Post them to social media (such as FACEBOOK, FLICKR, INSTAGRAM, DROPBOX), send via instant message or e-mail them with just a few clicks. No need to close out of one app and open another.
  • Print Options
    • Users choose what works best for them – print in store at a Wi-Fi enabled KODAK Picture Kiosk; send to one of thousands of stores for same day pick up; or, ship to home.
  • Photo Gallery View
    • Conveniently access from the main menu, and easily view, select and print photos.

The update is available now in the App Store as a free download.



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Real Boxing 2 to enter the ring with some impressive grap...

Today, 03:19 PM

Posted By x-bot in iDevice News

Vivid Games had a smash hit with the original Real Boxing game. Now the developer has posted the first trailer for the sequel, Real Boxing 2, with some impressive looking graphics that use Unreal Engine 4.

Here's what Vivid has to say about Real Boxing 2:

The game introduces a revolutionary, seamlessly single and multiplayer Career Mode which has players lead their boxer from zero to legend fighting in a variety of Events, completing countless Contracts and challenging an elite of extraordinary boss characters, earning powerful rewards and unlocking new content on the way. One of the key features of the title is a brand new character customization system giving players near limitless possibilities of making their one of a kind boxer thanks to four diverse character classes, hundreds of unique unlockable items, as well as a robust set of fighter creation options allowing players to tweak details such as build size, facial attributes, hairstyles and more.

Real Boxing 2 will be released later this year as a free-to-play title, but people who sign up for the game's VIP Club at its official website will get the chance to play a beta before its official launch.

Source: Real Boxing



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How to add Apple Music playlists to your Apple Watch

Today, 03:00 PM

Posted By x-bot in iDevice News

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Want to rock out to an Apple Music playlist on your Apple Watch? Here's how.

Whether you're heading out for a run, hitting the gym, doing rounds, or doing housework, your Apple Watch can hold up to 2 GB of music all on its own. All you have to do is sync a playlist over from your iPhone. The transfer is wireless and best of all, it's easy to do.

How to download a playlist for offline listening

Before you add a playlist to your Apple Watch, you'll want to make sure it's first locally stored on your iPhone.

  1. Launch the Music app on your iPhone.
  2. Go to the playlist you want to download.
  3. Tap the More button (looks like •••) to the right of the music.
  4. Tap on Make Available Offline

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  5. The playlist and its included songs should immediately begin downloading to your device; you can see their progress by tapping the download bar at the top of the screen. After the playlist is finished downloading, you'll find it in your local playlists.
How to sync playlists from your iPhone to your Apple Watch
  1. Launch the Apple Watch app on your iPhone.
  2. Tap on Music.
  3. Tap on Synced Playlist.

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  4. Tap on the Playlist you want to sync.

Once the playlist syncs over, it'll be available for you to play on your Apple Watch.

How to play local music on your Apple Watch
  1. Launch the Music app on your Apple Watch.
  2. Force Press to bring up the options.
  3. Tap on Source.
  4. Tap on Apple Watch.
  5. Pair your Apple Watch with a Bluetooth headset, if you haven't already.
  6. Choose the song you want to play, and enjoy!


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Comic: We're happy if you're happy, Windows X user

01 Aug 2015

Posted By x-bot in iDevice News

Happy Saturday, iMore! Because Rich is awesome, he's letting us run some of his Mac-themed comics from the Diesel Sweeties archive on weekends. Bonus comics, woo! We hope you enjoy.

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Read more comics from the Pixel Project on iMore.com.



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KODIAK Nu-glass Cases for iPhone 6 are $10.95 today

Today, 02:28 PM

Posted By x-bot in iDevice News

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Sport see-through protection against scratches and drops with this slim hard case for your iPhone 6. The durable, easy-grip bumper shields the major impact points and enhances grip. Save 45% in black, gold, or white options.



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Switch to iPhone: Because accessibility matters

Today, 02:00 PM

Posted By x-bot in iDevice News

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Not because its easy but because it's the right thing to do.

At the yearly keynotes where Apple introduces new versions of iOS, the company has repeatedly made sure to feature accessibility on stage and in video. This year Apple was honored with the Hellen Keller Achievement Award for VoiceOver. The company also honored developers, awarding Workflow with an Apple Design Award for its implementation of accessibility. Over the last few months, Apple has also featured accessibility in the App Store, for Autism Awareness Month, for VoiceOver, and for the anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act. Because of Apple's constant and consistent advocacy and implementation, if you care about assistive technologies and aren't already using one, you should strongly consider switching to iPhone.

Apple not only puts accessibility front and center on apple.com, but the company also has a complete support section, a public resource page, full documentation for developers, and even a terrific tips and tricks page dedicated to it as well.

More than just features

The camera is an example of the approach Apple takes to accessibility. Instead of simply scratching it off the list as something those with low or no vision won't use, Apple tries to make it the camera something they can use.

To help take pictures, the built-in Camera app uses facial recognition to announce how many people it detects in a shot and even where they're positioned on screen. The Photos app will announce the date a photo was taken, whether it's portrait or landscape, and even whether it's crisp or blurry, low or well lit.

That's in addition to Siri voice control, the system-wide VoiceOver technology, built-in Braille support, selection and screen reading, support for descriptive audio, and the plethora of vision enhancement features like inverted colors, black and white, labels, outlines, and more.

The latest iPhones even have a mode where, instead of giving you more pixels, they magnify the size of the pixels, effectively showing you an iPhone 5s interface on an iPhone 6 and an iPhone 6 interface on an iPhone 6 Plus. That can make the entire device easier to read and navigate.

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For those with low or no hearing, there are options to use the LED Flash for visual alerts, custom vibrations for tactile alerts, close captioning for media, and built-in FaceTime for communicating with sign language. (Because FaceTime has end-to-end encryption, it's even used in therapy for new recipients of cochlear implants.)

Motor skills are supported with switch controls that can use the camera or an assistive device for input, as well as custom gestures. There's also AssistiveTouch, which provides virtual, on-screen controls for when hardware buttons aren't accessible enough, and a wide range of customization options for multitouch and Home button input.

All of these features not only help those with special needs but children picking up computing for the first time, and seniors whose sight, dexterity, memory, hearing, or other skills are no longer what they used to be.

There are a host of other features as well, and more coming with iOS 9 this fall. There's Guided Access for those on the autistic spectrum, and even full, system-wide support for right-to-left languages, because Accessibility is also about making sure everyone is included.

Prioritizing accessibility

According to a WebAIM survey, over 65% of people with accessibility needs were already using iOS as their primary mobile platform for screen-reading as of 2014. That's almost two-thirds of the organizations respondents and a good indication of just how well Apple is serving the community.

That's proof that Apple or iOS has "won" the community, however. It's proof Apple has gained confidence from the community but has to work hard to keep it and even harder to grow it.

In previous years, Apple has showcased the blind enjoying the wilderness for the first time thanks to the iPhone, and back in June they showed kids experiencing music for the first time as a tactile sensation. The company has highlighted messages being spoken, sign language being seen, and communication being enabled for the first time.

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This spring Apple launched the Watch, which as a first-generation product shipped with an amazing array of accessibility features. As an extension to the iPhone, it can do everything from making notifications to directions available whenever and wherever it's worn. It even had VoiceOver built in from day one, and easy-to-close magnetic straps available to order.

Add in App Store apps, which can all tap into the built-in system features simply by using Apple's frameworks, and which offer dedicated apps for those on the autistic spectrum, those with learning disabilities, and those with a host of other special needs, and the support for accessibility is simply staggering.

Android at its most basic offers various degrees of accessibility support in various versions of their operating systems and devices, some of which require additional downloads, and some of which are still called "experimental." It can vary greatly depending on manufacturer. Some — Samsung and LG — go a good bit farther than others (and farther than stock Android itself).

But no other company has provided as constant and consistent support for accessibility on mobile as Apple, including driving awareness in the most prominent and public ways possible.

It's not magic. It's the result of building it into the corporate culture. It's being willing to invest by having teams whose only job is to ensure the accessibility of the system software and frameworks, and people in the company and community who care enough to propose, approve, and promote accessibility even when it's not, strictly speaking, their job.

Accessibility should be a point of pride and something that's highly competitive between companies. Every platform should feature it on stage every year, feature the best apps on every store, participate in national and global campaigns, and do everything possible to make the devices we use every day easier for everyone to use.

Accessibility for everyone

It's easy to think accessibility only matters for a few people. But the truth is anyone can be injured an need to rely on accessibility features for a period of time. We can get older and need easier ways to see and interact with our devices. We can have family members or friends who need our help.

Moreover, making apps more accessible by definition makes them more usable for everyone. It's a virtuous cycle.

There's never been a better time to switch

According to Apple, more people are switching to iPhone than ever before. That includes everyone from prominent security journalists to everyday consumers around the world.

When it comes to accessibility, however, Apple's proven they care deeply, they're in it for the long-term, and it's a passionate commitment that comes from the very highest levels of the company. Tim Cook, from early 2014:

When we work on making our devices accessible by the blind, I don't consider the bloody ROI

If accessibility matters to you, or if how a company prioritizes something like accessibility matters to you, check out the iPhone.



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New iMacs reportedly coming by the end of September

Today, 01:46 PM

Posted By x-bot in iDevice News
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Apple is reportedly readying new models of its iMac desktops. The machines are said to maintain their current design, while updating the internal components, though what exactly those upgrades entail is unknown.
The latest report on new iMacs, from Ming-Chi Kuo for KGI Securities, indicates that Apple will use new materials to improve the color saturation of the iMac. The company is also apparently hoping to launch the new iMacs in the current quarter.

We believe Apple will introduce new iMac models in 3Q15, which are expected to have key selling points such as more powerful processors and much better display quality. We predict the panel will use a LED phosphor material called KSF to notably boost color saturation.


Interestingly, it is currently the second month of 3Q15 (or as Apple calls it, Q4 2015), meaning that if Apple wants to release new iMacs this quarter, they'll be doing that by the end of September. It's unknown at this time whether this launch timeframe would mean that the new iMacs would continue to use Intel's Broadwell processors, or if they would perhaps be some of the first devices to pack the company's upcoming Skylake chips.
It should be noted that in the past few years, Apple has often debuted new Macs in October, though they have refreshed some models throughout the year.
Via: MacRumors


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