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The 7 best things about iOS 7

Author admin    Category Apple, IOS, IT News     Tags
iOS 7

iOS 7 launched earlier today and I think it’s a worthwhile upgrade for any iOS user. Read my review of iOS 7 here. But like any major software upgrade, there are good things about the changes as well as bad.

I decided to round up my favorite parts of iOS 7 that I think are truly useful and stand out from the other changes. Tomorrow, I’ll be writing what I think are the 7 worst things about iOS 7, so don’t get caught up thinking this is just an iPhone fan-fest.

iOS 7
Control Center gives you access to the most used system functions.
Control Center

One of the most talked about new changes for iOS 7 is not new at all on Android phones, but I think I speak for most iOS users when I say the Control Center is an extremely welcome addition. It was always a pain to sift through the settings using a number of taps just to access the brightness controls. Same for Wi-fi settings, which — because of an old router at home — I ended up having to access frequently. Now, a simple swipe upwards gives me easy access to these settings and more. Oh, and the flashlight button to turn on your flash when it’s dark is a great touch.

iTunes Radio
Frankly, when I heard Apple was making a Pandora-like radio option, I wasn’t that impressed. I mean, there are a slew of streaming music and audio apps in the app store and many of them are free — at least the radio features are. But now that I’ve used the app for a few days, I like it better than most streaming radio apps I’ve seen.

Not only can you create a stream based on songs or multiple artists, but there are featured streams that are great for music discovery. Also, when I really like a song I’m listening to, I can buy it straight away from iTunes without missing a beat of the song or closing the app.

Camera App
The iOS 7 camera app is not a huge change over what we had in iOS 6, but I really like having the ability to swipe between shot types. The filters are also a nice touch for adding a quick effect, though I wish there were more to choose from. But what I particularly like is the ability to take burst shots. Everyone knows that not all photos come out perfectly, but if you can take several at a time, chances are at least one will be to your liking.

iOS 7
Simply swipe to the left to see time stamps for every text.I have an iPhone 5 so the burst shots feature is not as good as it is on the iPhone 5S (10 photos per second, along with slow-mo), but I’m glad there’s a slower variation available on the iPhone 5.

Messages time stamps
One thing that had always bugged me about text messages is that you only got a general time frame for when texts were sent. It would only mark the first text in the chain, so you couldn’t tell when subsequent texts were sent or received.

I wasn’t even aware of the change in iOS 7 until one of my coworkers pointed it out to me: if you swipe to the left in the Messages window you can see a time stamp for each individual text. I’m pretty sure this change will settle a lot of petty arguments between people: “No, look! I replied to your message two minutes later! It’s not my fault!” That is a fictitious example that has nothing to do with real life. No, really.

Safari does Twitter
Another new feature isn’t getting all the press that things like Control Center and iTunes Radio get, but will be a great addition for Twitter users. Now, when you touch the bookmarks button at the bottom. You can touch the “@” symbol in the top right to get Twitter links. What you get is a list of all the tweets from people you follow who posted links to Twitter. From here, you can just touch each tweet and quickly see the associated post, picture, or video, automatically formatted perfectly for your iPhone.

iOS 7
Safari’s Twitter feed lets you look at links from people you follow.
FaceTime audio

FaceTime got the iOS 7 design treatment along with the rest of the core apps, but it also got one surprisingly cool new feature: FaceTime audio. Now, you can make a call over 4G or Wi-fi without the video component and the sound quality is fantastic.

The only thing I don’t like about it is that, while you can switch to video in the middle of an audio call, you can’t switch back to audio from a video call. Still, being able to avoid long distance (and international) charges with great sound quality is huge perk.

We all probably remember the Galaxy S4 commercial parody where the two Galaxy owners do the phone bump next to the people in line at the Apple store. The over-the-top Apple fanboys in line say something like “Woah, my iPhone can’t do that!”

In iOS 7, not only can you quickly send photos, videos, and contacts using AirDrop, but just about anything from any app that has the share button (with the exception of music). The only problem is that it only works on iPhone 5 or later because of the chip architecture in the iPhone 4S. Still, I think it’s a great new feature. Oh, and the other advantage? No bump required.



Apple and Samsung set to continue their duopoly in 2014

Author admin    Category Apple, IT News, Samsung     Tags

Apple and Samsung set to continue their duopoly in 2014

An estimated 2.5 billion devices will be sold in 2014, with Android devices accounting for 42 percent of sales.

(Credit: Gartner )

In 2014, an estimated 2.5 billion devices will be sold worldwide, an increase of 6 percent over the previous year, according to Gartner. More than 75 percent of the devices will be mobile phones, with Android achieving more than double the share of Apple’s iOS or Windows Phone in 2014.

(Credit: Gartner)

So it’s clear, barring unforeseen circumstances and any gross inaccuracy in Gartner’s estimates, that Android will be the statistical leader, with 42 percent of the 1.9 billion mobile phones sold next year running some flavor of the Google-inspired, open-source mobile operating system. Though statistically Android is a big winner, that doesn’t mean it’s the only winner or the financial winner.

For the first quarter of 2013, Apple captured 57 percent of worldwide mobile phone industry profits, according to Canaccord Genuity’s T. Michael Walkley. The remaining 43 percent went to Samsung. For the quarter ending June 30, Walkley predicts that the introduction of Samsung’s Galaxy S4, paired with Apple’s lack of a new smartphone in nearly a year, will put the South Korean electronics giant ahead of Apple in the profit arena.

Asymco charts out the profits in mobile phones from 2007 through 2012.(Credit: Asymco)

The rest of the Android smartphone makers are inhaling Samsung’s exhaust. In addition, Samsung has in effect been a stabilizing force for a fragmented Android ecosystem that wrestles with several Android and user interface variations.

Though Samsung dominates the growing Android market, Gartner projects that Apple will garner 14 percent of all devices next year, compared with 15 percent for Microsoft Windows. Apple’s share will come from mobile devices, iPhones, and iPads, as well as its popular MacBook laptops, while Microsoft will feed mostly on its legacy of PC and laptop sales despite its persistent efforts to leapfrog the competition in mobile.

Microsoft and its Windows allies, including Nokia and a host of PC makers, are expected to grow device shipments more slowly than the Android purveyors or Apple next year, Gartner predicts. In fact, Gartner projects both Apple and Android operating system sales to grow more than 17 percent in 2014, and Windows around 10 percent. BlackBerry (RIM) will continue its slide, as will companies in the “Others” category, as more users worldwide adopt devices from the top three platforms.

(Credit: Gartner)

Apple and Samsung are an odd duopoly that has managed to carve out all the profits and dominate the field. The two companies have been bitter rivals in the courts, with Apple claiming a major, $1.05 billion victory in a patent suit last year. Apple is also a major component customer of Samsung, though the iPhone maker is trying to wean itself off its rival’s chips. Apple has the advantage of completely controlling its hardware and software, and Samsung has the advantage of manufacturing many of its own components. Apple is parsimonious with new products, waiting a year between new iPhones, while Samsung seems to issue new products every month.

What the two companies share currently is momentum, big ad budgets, and a halo effect. As the established leaders, they’re able to sell across their product lines — phones, tablets, laptops, PCs — and gain converts to their brands. They’re perceived by buyers as cool, safe, and fashionable.

For Apple, the halo effect has always been at work, but it wasn’t until the mobile products that the company turned into a financial and market share bonanza. Samsung took many lessons from Apple, some which the courts found to be illegal, but has forged its own aggressive path with its Galaxy family to achieve its halo. But fortunes can change, as in the fate of the BlackBerry and Nokia’s Symbian operating system. For the foreseeable future, however, it appears that Apple and Samsung will continue their complicated duopoly, carving up the majority of profit and a growing portion of sales.



The Best Features Of iOS 7

Author admin    Category Android, IOS, IT News     Tags

Users of Apple’s iPhone, iPad and iPod touch devices got their first look at the company’s newest operating system, iOS 7, earlier today. Not only has Apple given iOS an entirely new look and feel, courtesy of head designer Jonathan Ive, but it has also revealed a revamped suite of core apps like Photos, Camera, Calendar, Weather and others, added new services like iTunes Radio and features like AirDrop, while also making it less lucrative for would-be thieves to steal your iPhone, and much more.

During this morning keynote’s, company execs walked users through some of the biggest changes arriving in iOS 7, which launches in beta for iPhone developers today, with a larger public release expected this fall.

Here are some of the best new features and updates you can expect when iOS 7 ships later this year.

A More Modern Design

Let’s get this out of the way first: love it or hate it, the biggest change is the one we knew was coming – skeuomorphic design is dead. The new operating system has been redesigned from head to toe in a flatter — but not a totally flat — design as some had feared. Instead, there’s a transparency effect in place in many screens, and when you move the device in your hand, iOS now tracks the motion, allowing you to see behind the icons. This is great for background wallpapers, for example, as you’ll get to see more of your favorite homescreen photo previously hidden behind the apps.

Overall, the look is cleaner and simpler in many ways — the ugly green felt is gone from Game Center, for example. It is one of the most-hated apps in terms of being representative of the older, “skeuomorphic” design, which attempted to make apps familiar to users by coating them with elements from the real-world (like leather stitching, felt or yellow-lined notepad paper). The company took several digs at the old style in the process of introducing the new, as well. To be sure, there was no “evolution” at play here — this was murder.

iOS Gets A Back Button (Sort Of)

With an idea borrowed from several third-party iOS apps and BB10 (if you can believe it), the new version of the operating system now has a “back button” of sorts. Except it’s not a button really, it’s a gesture. Unlike on Android, where devices offer a dedicated software or hardware button for the function that means “go back to the previous screen,” the iOS back function is there when you need it but doesn’t clutter up the screen when you don’t.

Instead of a button, you swipe in from the left side of the screen (bezel to screen) to invoke the feature. It works in places you would expect, such as the Safari web browser, as well as in apps like Mail, and elsewhere.

Upgraded Default Apps

Apple has responded to the growing number of apps meant to serve as an alternative to Apple’s default set (think Calendar, Weather, Mail, Messages, etc.) with an overhaul of all its apps that ship with iOS devices out of the box.

Many of these seems inspired by some of the more popular applications in its own App Store, too, if not directly built by third parties, as the new Yahoo-powered Weather app is. Though not identical to the Yahoo Weather app in iTunes (which is arguably one of the highest-rated weather apps of all time), the new native Weather app shares a lot of the design elements, but replaces Flickr photo backgrounds for those of weather animations like rain or snow — also much like Android’s live weather widgets allow for today.

The native calendar app, now clean and white (and a lot like Sunrise), lets you swipe between days, turn to landscape to see a week in advance and zoom out to see your month or year.

Mail, meanwhile, offers big, edge-to-edge photos when used for photo-sharing and lets you take action on inbox messages with a swipe, which is a feature that earlier earned third-party app Mailbox an exit to Dropbox for around $100 million.

Safari got a big revamp too, with fancy 3D-esque tab-switching behavior, improved bookmarking, one-tap access to favorites, and even Twitter integration which lets you see which links your Twitter friends are reading and sharing.

The camera, meanwhile, has been updated with built-in Instagram-like filters, and the ability to swap between the different camera modes like “panoramic” or the new “square” camera view.

Photos & iCloud Photo Sharing

Though technically another default app update, the revamped Photos app deserves a deeper look because photo-taking is one of the iPhone’s (and all smartphones, really) most-used features. The Camera Roll itself has now been improved, organizing photos into “Moments” based on location and time – again, a feature inspired by the work of a number of third-party apps including Cluster,, Flock, Tracks, flayvr, and others.

These collections will be auto-labeled with locations you visit. In the demo, that included venues like the Golden Gate Bridge and the Palace of Fine Arts, as well as your home and your kid’s elementary school, for example. But as you zoom out to take a broader view, the locations merge together by date, letting you zoom all the way out to the year view where you can scroll and scrub through the photos, then tap to go into any one.

Built-in to this new experience is something called Air Drop, which is a new way to share photos with other iPhone users. (The poke at Android users: “there’s no need to wander around the room bumping your phone.”) Instead, photos and videos can be shared peer-to-peer over Wi-Fi connections with nearby users on newer iOS devices; they can also be shared via Facebook, Twitter, email, and into iCloud photo streams.

The photo stream was one of iOS’s lesser understood features among mainstream users, but the update makes it more accessible, allowing multiple users to contribute both photos and video, as well as comments to a shared stream.

iTunes Radio

Everyone had been calling it “iRadio” ahead of today’s announcement, but the feature’s official debut is worth noting even if the surprise was spoiled. As expected, iTunes Radio is very much a Pandora-like experience built on top of the iTunes music catalog and forged through new deals with the major record labels. Like most streaming music apps on the market, you can play pre-loaded stations by genre or create your own “artist radio” station, skipping and favoriting songs to teach the service your own likes and interests.

What Apple’s iTunes Radio does differently is that it also ties you back to the iTunes store, allowing you to “wishlist” your favorites, and purchase those tracks you want to hear on demand. The app is free and ad-supported, but ads are removed for iTunes Match subscribers.

Siri Gets Smarter

There wasn’t as big a focus on Siri as is needed (at least in the keynote demo), but the feature has gotten new male and female voices, which can now speak French and German with more languages coming “in time.” Notably, the service can now control more of your device, including playing back your voicemails, turning on or off things like Bluetooth, increasing or decreasing screen brightness and more.

It has also now integrated Twitter, Wikipedia and search results from Bing, so it can do things like read you Wikipedia entries or pull up web results.

Anti-Theft Features

The iPhone’s popularity and high resell value has led to it being one of the most stolen devices, too, but Apple’s new security upgrade is meant to make at least petty crime involving stolen iOS devices not worth criminals’ time and effort. Apple said that hundreds of millions use “Find my iPhone,” but as we know, thieves simply turn off devices and wipe them before re-selling them.

With a new “Activation Lock” setting, a thief won’t be able to reactivate an iPhone without hacking your iCloud user name and password, too. Although no security mechanism is bullet-proof, this makes it just hard enough to deter casual criminals or crimes of opportunity — like the phone that gets left behind at a bar, maybe?

A Better Notification Center

The notification center drop-down has also gotten a makeover, but considering how often users check this screen it’s surprising it didn’t get more show time this morning, when its new feature set was revealed. That being said, the center now splits your notifications more intelligently between top-level categories like “All,” “Missed,” and “Today,” the latter giving you a day-at-a-glance view into your To-Do’s, plus Stocks, Calendars, Weather and a small preview of Tomorrow at the bottom.

Easy Access Controls

A new gesture — a swipe up from the bottom of the screen — will now launch a “Control Center” interface which is like an easier-to-access Settings area. The ability to quickly dive into your Settings is a feature that Android phones have had forever, and iOS users have been clamoring for. Here, you can quickly tap things like “Airplane Mode” or access your Wi-Fi controls, for example, as well as a built-in flashlight (hooray!) and media player controls.

Intelligent Multi-Tasking

Before, the multi-tasking interface accessed by a double tap of the home button brought up a small rack of app icons running in the background. Today, it displays large windows showing the app’s interface in action instead. More importantly, multi-tasking has gotten smarter without damaging battery life, Apple claims.

Now all apps are able to run in the background, and iOS 7 learns from your patterns of app usage which ones deserve a more regular update. For example, an app you check often like Facebook will be updated more regularly than one you check once or twice per day. In addition, the apps update this information based on other factors, too, like whether you’re in an area with good cell coverage or whether or not you tend to respond to that app’s push notifications. All these things tie in to train iOS 7 to learn which apps are most important to you.

…And More

There are a number of new features which Apple didn’t have time to go through today, including FaceTime and iMessage blocking, per-app VPN capabilities for the enterprise, and more, but these are “icing on the cake” type of features on top of those given special attention today. In the weeks ahead, we’ll know more about some of these minor upgrades, as developers begin their beta tests of the new operating system and other details emerge.



Android, Apple iOS flip consumer, corporate market share

Author admin    Category Android, Apple, IOS, IT News     Tags

ndroid dominates the consumer global platform race with nearly 70 percent market share, but in the enterprise Apple’s iOS platform dominates. It’s a bit of a conundrum for Android, which apparently scares tech executives worried about multiple flavors of the OS and security.

Let’s roll the market share stats:

According to Gartner, Android’s global share is nearing 70 percent.



In the U.S., ComScore puts Android share at 53.4 percent with Apple iOS at 36.3 percent.



So far so good right? Not for corporations. In the enterprise, using Citrix Zenprise data as a proxy, Android is far from dominant. Apple, which allegedly doesn’t give a hoot about the enterprise, dominates.

Here’s a look at the Android vs. iOS race in the corporate world based on third quarter Zenprise data. Zenprise is a top 5 mobile device management vendor recently acquired by Citrix.



A few things to note about those standings:

  1. Android share is trending up and the Asia stats were skewed by a few large iOS deployments.
  2. iOS market share in the corporate world is fueled by the iPad, which accounted for 57 percent of iOS devices.
  3. Android is dominant in transportation, health care and communications verticals. iOS leads in education, energy, legal, real estate and insurance.

What’s the hangup with Android in the enterprise? A few thoughts:

  • CIOs are wary of the different flavors of Android and iOS is easier to secure.
  • Apple leads the tablet race so that reality boosts iOS a lot in the corporate market.
  • Windows and BlackBerry are likely to retain some market share in corporations and that’s going to prevent the Android-iOS duopoly situation seen in the consumer market.
  • Security is a concern for Android applications. Blue Coat Systems highlighted the Android risks recently.



iOS 6 now available to download for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch (full changelog)

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iOS 6 now available to download for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch

Cupertino’s newest hardware may have us purring, but Apple hasn’t left those of us with existing hardware out in the cold. iOS 6 should be appearing as an available update right now, or at least very shortly — depending on how taxed those servers get. It’ll be compatible with every iPhone since the 3GS, iPod touch 4G / 5G and this-and-last-year’s vintage of the iPad. Given the inexorable march of technology, some of the newer features won’t work on the older devices, but you can use our compatability checker to determine what new things you’ll be able to do in the next few hours.

iOS 6 Software Update

This update contains over 200 new features, including the following:

• Maps
◦ Apple designed vector based maps
◦ Turn-by-turn navigation with spoken directions on iPhone 5, iPhone 4S, iPad Wi-Fi + Cellular (2nd and 3rd generation)
◦ Real-time traffic information
◦ Flyover for photo-realistic, interactive 3D views of major metro areas on iPhone 5, iPhone 4S, iPad (3rd generation), and iPod touch (5th generation)
◦ Local search results with Yelp photos, ratings, reviews, and available deals
◦ Siri integration for requesting directions and finding places along a route
• Siri improvements
◦ Sports: scores, player stats, game schedules, team rosters, and league standings for baseball, basketball, football, soccer and hockey
◦ Movies: trailers, showtimes, reviews and facts
◦ Restaurants: reservations, reviews, photos and information
◦ Send a Tweet
◦ Post on Facebook
◦ App launch
◦ Eyes Free in supported automobiles
◦ Local search available in Siri supported countries (availability may be limited during initial rollout)
◦ Additional country and language support for Canada (English and Canadian French), China (Mandarin), Hong Kong (Cantonese), Italy (Italian), Korea (Korean), Mexico (Spanish), Spain (Spanish), Switzerland (Italian, French, German), Taiwan (Mandarin), US (Spanish)
◦ Supported on iPhone 5, iPhone 4S, iPad (3rd generation) and iPod touch (5th generation)
• Facebook integration
◦ Single sign-on from Settings
◦ Post from Photos, Safari, Maps, App Store, iTunes, Game Center, Notification Center and Siri
◦ Add location and choose audience for any post
◦ View up-to-date Facebook profile photos and contact information in Contacts
◦ View Facebook events and birthdays in Calendar
◦ Like content and see your friends’ Likes in App Store and iTunes Store
• Shared Photo Streams
◦ Share selected photos with the people you choose
◦ Friends can view shared photos in Photos app, iPhoto and Apple TV
◦ Friends can like and make comments on individual photos
• Passbook
◦ One place for boarding passes, store cards, movie tickets and other passes
◦ Barcode display for boarding flights, buying coffee, getting into movies and other actions
◦ Passes displayed on Lock Screen based on time or location
◦ Passes can be automatically updated
◦ Supported on iPhone and iPod touch
• FaceTime improvements
◦ FaceTime over cellular support for iPhone 5, iPhone 4S and iPad Wi-Fi + Cellular (3rd generation)
◦ Receive FaceTime calls, sent to your iPhone number, on your iPad and iPod touch
• Phone improvements
◦ Do Not Disturb to suppress incoming calls and notifications
◦ ‘Reply with message’ option when declining a call
◦ ‘Remind me later’ option based on time or location when declining a call
• Mail improvements
◦ VIP mailbox to quickly access mail from important people
◦ Flagged email mailbox
◦ Insert photos and videos when composing email
◦ Open password protected Office docs
◦ Pull down to refresh mailboxes
◦ Per account signatures
• Safari improvements
◦ iCloud tabs to see open pages on all your devices
◦ Offline Reading List
◦ Photo upload support
◦ Full screen landscape view on iPhone and iPod touch
◦ Smart app banners
◦ JavaScript performance improvements
• App Store and iTunes Store improvements
◦ Updated store design
◦ iTunes Preview history
◦ Complete my season
◦ Complete my album
• Game Center improvements
◦ Challenge friends to beat high scores and achievements
◦ Post high-scores and achievements to Facebook and Twitter
◦ Friend recommendations based on your Facebook friends
• Accessibility improvements
◦ Guided Access to limit device to one app or restrict touch input on certain areas of the screen
◦ VoiceOver integration with Maps, AssistiveTouch and Zoom
◦ Support for Made for iPhone Hearing Aids for iPhone 5 and iPhone 4S
• Improved privacy controls for Contacts, Calendars, Reminders, Photos and data shared over Bluetooth
• Reminders can be reordered in the Reminders app
• Custom vibrations for alerts on iPhone
• Clock app for iPad
• Clock alarm with song
• Search all fields in Contacts
• Automatic movie mode for improved video sound quality
• Definitions of a selected word for Chinese, French, German and Spanish
• New keyboard layouts for French, German, Turkish, Catalan, Arabic and Icelandic
• Keyboard shortcuts shared across devices via iCloud
• Bluetooth MAP support
• Global network proxy for HTTP
• Features for China
◦ Baidu web search
◦ Sina Weibo integration
◦ Share videos to Tudou
◦ Share videos to Youku
◦ Improved text input for handwriting and Pinyin
• Bug fixes

Some features may not be available for all countries or all areas. Please visit this website for more details:

For information on the security content of this update, please visit this website:



iPhone 5 : Faster, Lighter, Longer

Author admin    Category Apple, IPhone, IT News     Tags
The iPhone 5 features a 4-inch display, compared to the iPhone 4/4S’s 3.5-inch display. Photo: John Bradley/Wired

Apple’s iPhone 5 is another iterative update to the iPhone line. It features a lengthier frame, a redesigned chassis, and heavily upgraded internals that combine to deliver a super-speedy and decidedly modern smartphone experience. It’s terrific, but nothing that will blow your mind-hole.

The most noticeable difference between the iPhone 5 and a 4S/4 is just how crazy light this new thing is. It’s actually lighter than plasticky Samsung phones like the Galaxy S III, yet it doesn’t feel cheap. The switch to a primarily aluminum back plate (and the slimming Apple did as far as the in-cell display and other internals go) make it 20 percent lighter weight its glass-backed predecessor. After years using the 4/4S form factor, I found the weight loss completely surprising, especially given the increased size.

Another pleasant change is the iPhone 5′s brushed aluminum bezel and rear plate, rather than slick aluminum of its predecessor. One of the problems I find with some larger phones, like the Nokia Lumia 900, is that their size and smooth veneer make can make them tough to hold onto. Not so with the 5. Since it’s the same width as the current iPhone, you don’t need to awkwardly stretch your hand wider to grasp it, which is a definite plus — unless you find the iPhone too small for your palm. Besides being quite handsome to look at, the brushed aluminum texture adds a subtle and comforting level of friction between skin and metal.

The brushed aluminum rear plate of the iPhone 5. Photo: John Bradley/Wired

The 4-inch, 326 PPI display is just as dazzling as it was when it was first introduced on the iPhone 4 two years ago, but the extra screen real estate gives you more room to appreciate it. Colors are bright and rich (it has 44 percent more color saturation than the 4S), text is expectedly crisp, and high-resolution images look stunning. The added fifth row of app icons on the homescreen feels completely natural.

The A6 processor makes onscreen interactions, app loading, and webpage opening practically instantaneous. Surfing through the new Maps app in iOS 6 is stutter-free, but the two finger gesture to adjust your view in Flyover mode, a whimsical but potentially useful feature of the OS, takes some getting used to.

Its 8-megapixel shooter, largely the same as that in the iPhone 4S but shrunk down 25 percent in size, seems to take quality photos (and 1080p video), but the lighting in the demo room isn’t optimal for really putting a camera through its paces. The new Panorama mode is easy to use and can be accessed by tapping the Option button at the top of the camera app interface.

A few features we have yet to test in our limited hands-on time: the iPhone 5′s speed bump to 4G LTE connectivity; the smaller, reversible “Lightning” dock connector; and battery life. We’ll get to those and more in our full review in a few weeks’ time.

Our overall impression of the iPhone 5: It’s another iPhone. Just longer. And better. Although there may not be one individual feature about it that makes you scream, “I’ve got to have it now!”, all the improvements together make it a gotta-have handset.



Hackers Release 1 Million Apple Device IDs Allegedly Stolen From FBI Laptop

Author admin    Category Apple, Hacker, IT News     Tags
Photo: Wired 

The hacker group AntiSec has released 1 million Apple device IDs that they say they obtained from an FBI computer they hacked.

The hackers say they actually stole 12 million IDs, including personal information, from the hacked FBI computer, but released only 1 million in an encrypted file published on torrent sites.

In a lengthy post online, the hackers wrote that last March, they hacked a laptop belonging to an FBI agent named Christopher K. Stangl from the bureau’s Regional Cyber Action Team and the New York FBI office’s Evidence Response Team.

The hackers say the IDs were stored in a file on Stangl’s desktop titled “NCFTA_iOS_devices_intel.csv.”

The file, according to the hackers, contained a list of more than 12 million Apple iOS devices, including Unique Device Identifiers (UDID), user names, names of devices, types of devices, Apple Push Notification Service tokens, ZIP codes, cellphone numbers, and addresses. The hackers released only 1 million UDIDs, however, and did not release the accompanying personal information for the IDs.

Apple UDIDs are a 40-character alphanumeric string that is unique to each Apple device.

It’s not known why the FBI possessed the Apple IDs. The hackers suggested in a tweet from the the @AnonymousIRC account, that the FBI was using the information to track users.

AnonymousIRC @AnonymousIRC

12,000,000 identified and tracked iOS devices. thanks FBI SSA Christopher Stangl. #AntiSec

4 Sep 12

Stangl may have been targeted because he was on an e-mail that members of Anonymous intercepted last January. The e-mail was sent to several dozen U.S. and European law-enforcement personnel to participate in a conference call discussing efforts to investigate Anonymous and other hacking groups. The email included a call-in number for the discussion, which members of Anonymous recorded and posted online last February.

The hackers say they released the Apple UDIDs so that people would know that the FBI may be tracking their devices and also because, they wrote in their online post, “we think it’s the right moment to release this knowing that Apple is looking for alternatives for those UDID currently … but well, in this case it’s too late for those concerned owners on the list.”

Apple has been criticized for hard-coding the ID’s in devices, since they can be misused by application developers and others to identify a user, when combined with other information, and track them. Last April, Apple began rejecting applications that track UDIDs.

The Next Web has created a tool for users to check if their Apple UDID is among those that the hackers released.



Visualized: the iDevice influence on Apple’s bottom line

Author admin    Category Apple, IT News     Tags

Visualized the iDevice influence over Apple's bottom line

Apple’s Q3 earnings last week rang loud and clear: iDevices are paying Cupertino’s bills. The customary numerics laid down the bare facts, citing an 84 percent increase in iPad sales since 2011 and a similar 28 percent jump for the iPhone. Of course, well-organized tables of sales data aren’t for everyone, but who doesn’t love a good chart? Stuart Carlton took it upon himself to graph the percentages of Apple’s revenue that each of its product categories fill out, producing the above criss-cross of colored statistics. The graph compares Apple’s Q3 sales data going back several years, and a second chart (after the break) compares the iPhone, iPad and iPod’s share of the revenue directly with the rest of Apple’s fare. Read on to take in the data for yourself, or hit the source link below for Carlton’s own commentary.

Visualized the iDevice influence over Apple's bottom line




Apple Unveils New MacBooks, iOS 6, and New Mountain Lion Features

Author admin    Category Apple, IOS, IT News     Tags
    Apple unveiled new Macs, a new version of iOS, and more Mac OS Mountain Lion features at its WWDC keynote Monday. Photo: Jon Phillips/Wired

    It didn’t have the flair and shock factor of an iDevice unveiling, but today’s Apple event still wowed the hardcore faithful.

    At its WWDC keynote Monday, Apple unveiled a host of hardware and software updates that confirmed many pre-event reports and rumors. The MacBook lineup was revamped top to bottom, including the introduction of a new slimmer MacBook Pro with Retina display. We also saw new Mountain Lion OS X features, and the world’s first public unveiling of iOS 6.

    Below is a quick cheat sheet on the most important announcement details. For a full recap of the keynote, read our liveblog report here.

    Thinner, Lighter, Brighter MacBooks

    The MacBook Air and MacBook Pro line received some major updates, confirming at least some of the leaks reported last week. The entire line-up has been updated with the third generation of Intel’s “core” processors, aka Ivy Bridge. The new MacBook Airs and the 13-inch MacBook Pro will come with either a dual-core Core i5 or a Core i7 processor, while the 15-inch MacBook Pro features Intel’s Core i7 quad-core processor. MacBooks will now also come with an Intel HD Graphics 4000 processor, two USB 3.0 ports, and a 720p FaceTime HD camera.

    The new MacBook Pro with Retina display offers much of the slimness of an Air, plus a super-fine resolution, and Pro-level performance. Photo: Jon Phillips/Wired

    But the most impressive and drastic update arrives in a completely new 15-inch MacBook Pro, which is now thinner and lighter to match its Air counterpart. This new MacBook Pro weighs 4.46 pounds and is only 0.71 inches thick. What’s more, this MacBook Pro sports a 2880×1800 pixel Retina Display — that’s four times the pixel density of the previous MacBook Pro model.

    The name of this specimen? It’s simply called MacBook Pro with Retina display, but of course.

    The new model’s display has a 178-degree viewing angle, and offers 75 percent less reflection and 29 percent higher contrast relative to previous MacBook Pros. Built-in and paid apps, including iPhoto, iMovie, iTunes, Aperture and Final Cut Pro X, have been updated for the new Retina Display.

    The MacBook Pro with Retina display will also ship with the third-generation Intel Core i7 quad-core processor, Nvidia GeForce FT 650M discreet graphics, up to 16GB of 1,600MHz RAM, and up to 768GB of flash storage. And Apple isn’t giving up on Thunderbolt: The new MacBook Pro comes with two Thunderbolt ports, along with two USB 3.0 ports and an HDMI port.

    Both the updated MacBook lineup and the new MacBook Pro with Retina display will be available for order Monday. The 11-inch MacBook Air starts at $1,000; the 13-inch MacBook Air starts at $1,100; the 13-inch MacBook Pro starts at $1,500; the 15-inch MacBook Pro (without a Retina display) starts at $1,800; and the new and thinner 15-inch MacBook Pro with Retina display starts at $2,200.

    iOS 6

    iOS 6 was one of the most highly anticipated announcements coming into WWDC, and Apple didn’t disappoint the masses, revealing a bevy of new features. iOS 6 introduces more than 200 new features, including a totally revamped Maps app, new Siri features, Facebook integration, Shared Photo Streams, the completely new Passbook app, and Guided Access — a feature made for educational purposes.

    Finally! You can pull to refresh your email list, just like in the Twitter app. Photo: Jon Phillips/Wired

    Of the seven trouble spots we wanted fixed in iOS 6, several actually made their way into the new mobile platform. Siri certainly became smarter, capable of speaking more languages and providing information on sports scores and schedules, movie listings, and restaurant reservations.

    Facebook will make its way into many of iOS 6′s apps, including Notification center, Siri, Photos, Safari, and Maps. And similar to Mountain Lion, your Facebook friends’ information will appear in the Contacts app.

    Apple couldn’t make a new mobile platform without developing totally new apps. And lucky for us, it isn’t just Cards 2. Apple announced Passbook, an app that collects all of your passes — everything from movie tickets to Amtrak passes — in one place.

    And iOS 6 will also include the new Guided Access feature. Guided Access makes it possible for parents and teachers to disable hardware buttons on an iOS device, so that the device can be locked into a single app. The aim is to help someone with a disability stay focused on learning within that app.

    But one of the largest updates comes with Maps, which now has turn-by-turn navigation, 3-D views, and real-time, crowd-sourced traffic information. Apple didn’t outright scream that it ditched Google Maps, but it did say it developed all these mapping features itself. We’re not sure of its direct utility, but an interactive 3-D view that allows you to zoom in on buildings and landmarks was a keynote highlight.

    Other new iOS 6 features include an updated Safari with iCloud tabs, support for FaceTime over cellular networks, a VIP Mailbox feature for the Mail app, and the ability to decline calls by sending the caller a message, setting a callback reminder, or setting up Do Not Disturb to hold messages and phone calls.

    Mountain Lion Features and Availability

    Apple showed off a number of new features to expect in OS X Mountain Lion, Apple’s upcoming desktop OS. And as we first saw in February, OS X Mountain Lion will more closely resemble iOS with a new Messages app, Notification Center, Reminders, Notes, and Game Center.

    A new Mountain Lion feature called Power Nap updates your computer while it sleeps. Photo: Jon Phillips/Wired

    iCloud will also take center stage in Mountain Lion, syncing your apps across all of your devices. And a new system-wide Sharing feature will make it possible for users to share links, photos, videos, and files to third-party social networks like Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, and Vimeo.

    Notably, Facebook received even deeper integration than most other social networks, and now matches the same levels of Twitter integration in Mac OS. For example, Notification Center will come with Facebook and Twitter support — users will be able to update their Facebook status from directly inside Notification Center. And Facebook friends will appear in Mountain Lion’s Contacts app.

    Other new features include support for voice dictation, Gatekeeper (a feature that affords users greater control over downloaded apps), AirPlay Mirroring, Safari updates such as Smart Search Field and iCloud Tabs, and new features for Chinese users including Baidu search support.

    Apple announced that OS X Mountain Lion will be available in July from the Mac App Store for $20. Developers will have access to a near-final version of Mountain Lion on Monday.



    Apple’s nano-SIM card design approved by ETSI

    Author admin    Category Apple, IT News     Tags

    The European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI) has approved the nano-SIM card design that was proposed by Apple, reports Ars Technica. The new nano-SIM card is 40 percent smaller than the current micro-SIM card standard in many modern cell phones.

    Size is obviously a major issue for cell phones and other devices that use SIM cards, and smaller components mean technology manufacturers can save the extra space for other hardware that can provide better features or battery life.

    “Today’s SIM card designs take up a significant amount of space inside a mobile device,” ETSI said in a statement. “This space is more and more valuable in today’s handsets which deliver an ever-increasing number of features.”

    The newly approved SIM card design is the fourth form factor (4FF), and measures 12.33mm wide by 8.8mm tall by 0.67mm thick (0.48″ x 0.35″ x 0.03″). Nano-SIM cards will be backwards-compatible with slots designed for micro-SIM cards, which will help manufacturers make the transition more smoothly as the new nano-SIM spec is implemented in future hardware.

    A rival design specification was submitted by RIM and Motorola. Their design and Apple’s eventually converged after modifications on both sides, and very few differences remained at the end. The major differentiating feature at the end was a notch on RIM and Motorola’s design, that would allow handsets to use the “push-push” design – where cards can be inserted by pushing the SIM into the slot and removed by pushing again – instead of a sliding tray for the cards.


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