Start saving now for your 24-karat gold iPhone 6s

Aug 25, 2015 - 12:11 PM - by sparkyscott21



The iPhone 6s isn’t even out yet, and already luxury goods companies are preparing to give folks with way too much money the chance to pre-order their next-generation Apple handset in 24-karat-gold.

Hot off the mark is Goldgenie, which is currently letting customers register their interest in an exclusive luxury box-set containing both a gold-plated iPhone 6s and a gold Apple Watch.

On its website, the company notes that:



“As soon as the new iPhone 6s launches, Goldgenie will be offering its signature luxury customised versions of this highly anticipated smartphone. The iPhone 6s will be available in lustrous finishes of 24K Gold, Rose Gold and Platinum in Goldgenie’s classic elite models with a mirror like shine.

Customers will also be able to have their luxury customised iPhone 6s personalised with a laser engraving of their choice. The luxury customised iPhone 6s will be available on its own or as part of a gift set with a matching luxury customised Apple Watch. Make sure to register your interest to be the first to know when we launch the collection.”


Currently the website shows a countdown to 2pm BST on August 31. It’s not entirely clear why this is, since everything we’ve heard so far suggests the iPhone 6s won’t be announced until September 9. If Goldgenie is anything like other gold-plating services, it doesn’t have an inside track on what’s happening at Apple, but rather follows the news the same way every other reporter does – which makes the timing more than a little odd.

There’s also no price listed for the set, although a gold-plated iPhone 6 bought through Goldgenie costs £2,000 ($3,150) and a gold-plated Apple Watch costs the same.

Goldgenie’s not the only company to offer gold-plated iPhones. Rival companies include Gold & Co, whose work we have previously profiled, and luxury jewellery house Perla Penna, whose custom gold iPhones regularly pay tribute to Vladimir Putin.

Still, Goldgenie looks like it’s determined to be first to market with the gold iPhone 6s – and that’s got to count for something at the country club, while you’re chomping down on your gold-plated lobster, right?





8-25-15

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Apple Stores may end 'One to One' training sessions in near future, report claims

Aug 25, 2015 - 11:52 AM - by sparkyscott21



Apple is on the verge of phasing out its "One to One" training sessions for Apple Store customers, aiming to direct people into free, open workshops instead, a report said on Monday.

The company will honor any current One to One memberships until they run out, but no new ones will be sold, a source informed MacRumors. One to One costs $99 per year and offers basic training on Apple products via a mix of personal and group sessions.

Apple already runs a variety of free workshops at its stores, but the company is allegedly looking to reorganize them around themes like "Discover" and "Create." Workshops should also be easier to find on Apple's main website, instead of being buried in subsections for individual stores.

The motivation for the change is unclear, but Apple has largely ignored One to One during the past few years in terms of marketing and improvements. That could mean dwindling public interest in the program.

Alternately – or because of low interest – Apple might also want to maximize the labor it gets out of retail staff. Workers running personal One to One sessions aren't free to talk to other customers or process sales, which can potentially impede business.





8-25-15

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Tim Cook will reveal plans to end the ‘digital divide’ in public schools

Aug 24, 2015 - 12:24 PM - by sparkyscott21



Photos released ahead of the interview show Cook speaking with host Robin Roberts from a classroom kitted out with iMacs.

For those unfamiliar with it, the so-called “digital divide” refers to the gap between different demographics and areas based on their access to the latest technology.

Promoting tech inclusion among people from different backgrounds has been a big topic of Cook’s tenure as Apple CEO, based on his belief that Apple should be a “force for good” in the world.

Recently Apple released its employee diversity breakdown, while Cook has also pushed for Apple devices to make inroads in the education system: building on a target market the company has been working toward for years.

Earlier this year, Apple supported President Obama’s ConnectED program, which aims to improve Internet access at schools across the U.S. As part of the initiative, Apple contributed a number of MacBooks, iPads, and software, as well as its expertise.





8-24-15

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Apple job opening points to deeper Apple Music integration with Siri

Aug 24, 2015 - 12:15 PM - by sparkyscott21



An Apple job opening posted on Friday suggests that the company is looking to expand links between Siri and Apple Music, presumably in the form of new voice commands.

The listing, discovered by AppleInsider, calls for a Siri software engineer with a general interest in music. The person is expected to "help extend Siri's integration with Apple Music," primarily by "designing and implementing natural language interactions and work flow."

Candidates are required to have a bachelor's or master's degree in computer science, and five years of industry experience.

Siri integration is one of several features that distinguish Apple Music from services like Rdio and Spotify. A number of voice commands are already built in, covering not just basic playback options but some that involve contextual cues and/or information from separate databases. Siri will prioritize popular albums when given common search terms, for instance, and can discover which song topped charts on a given day, month, or year.

Whether or not they're already underway, new commands will likely have to wait until 2016, given a full slate of improvements coming this fall. iOS 9 will give Apple Music a redesigned graphical interface, and the service should appear on Android and the Apple TV for the first time. Indeed a new Apple TV model with Siri support is anticipated next month.





8-24-15

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Apple announces repair program for blurry iPhone 6 Plus cameras

Aug 24, 2015 - 12:12 PM - by sparkyscott21



Consumers who have experienced image quality problems with their iPhone 6 Plus's iSight camera may be eligible for a free repair, as Apple on Friday acknowledged a problem with a "small percentage" of units and will replace the affected component free of charge.

Officially dubbed the "iSight Camera Replacement Program for iPhone 6 Plus," Apple's repair effort is available to any iPhone 6 Plus owner whose device is producing blurry photos and carries the problematic part. Affected users can check their serial number at Apple's website.

Apple stops short of detailing the exact nature of the problem, saying only that some iPhone 6 Plus iSight cameras contain a "a component that may fail causing your photos to look blurry."

The iPhone 6 Plus ships with the most advanced iSight camera yet, and is the first iPhone to include optical image stabilization, a feature used to distinguish it from its smaller sibling. Both iPhone 6-series handsets also sport phase detection autofocus – which Apple markets as "Focus Pixels" – and the ability to capture slow-motion video at 240 frames per second.

Those taking advantage of Apple's repair program are advised to back up their phone before handing it over at an Apple Store or Apple authorized service provider. Affected units will be eligible for repair for up to 3 years after the iPhone's original purchase date.





8-24-15

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Daimler CEO considers benefits of Apple Car collaboration

Aug 21, 2015 - 1:56 PM - by sparkyscott21

The Apple Car is almost ready for testing



Apple has been slowly poaching some of Daimler’s top talent for its own car project that is nearly ready for testing, but according to Daimler CEO, Dieter Zetsche, it wouldn’t be totally inconceivable for Apple and the Mercedes-maker to work together on a future automotive project.

Zetsche said that “different types” of cooperation with Apple and Google are possible in the future, as carmakers have realized they need software experts and telecoms to help create the next-generation of automobiles.

“Google and Apple want to provide system software for cars and bring this entire ecosystem around Apple and Google into the vehicle,” the Daimler CEO said in an interview with Deutsche Unternehmerboerse. “That can be interesting for both sides.”

Apple has revved up development of it’s electric car, dubbed Project Titan, and is looking to test whatever it’s working on at the GoMentum Station 2,100 acre facility that once served as a Naval base. Tim Cook and other Apple execs have also reportedly looked for help with the project by visiting BMW to discuss using the German car maker’s i3 electric car as the basis for the Apple Car.

While Zetsche clarified that his comments of collaboration are completely theoretical right now. While he admitted such a deal “can be interesting for both sides,” the Daimler CEO said he will never allow his company to be a mere supplier for Apple.

“We don’t want to become contractors who have no direct content with customers any more and supply hardware to third parties,” Zetsche said.






8-21-15

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