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Apple Sees U.S. Mac Sales Drop 2.5% in 2Q15 Amid Larger Worldwide PC Shipment Decline

Posted by | July 9, 2015.
gartner_2Q15_us

Amid a decline in both U.S. and worldwide PC shipments, Apple has also seen a slight drop in its U.S. PC shipments in 2Q15, according to shipping estimates released today from Gartner. Apple shipped 1.92 million PCs during the second quarter of 2015, down from 1.97 million in 2Q14, marking a 2.5 percent decline.

Overall PC growth in the United States during the quarter was down 5.8 percent, with total estimated shipments at 15.1 million, down from 16 million in the year-ago quarter. With the exception of Lenovo, all of the top U.S. PC vendors saw declines in growth.

In the U.S., PC shipments totaled 15.1 million units in the second quarter of 2015, a 5.8 percent decline from the second quarter of 2014 (see Table 2). The decline was led by a double-digit decline of desk-based shipments, which offset single-digit growth of mobile PCs. Based on preliminary results, the desk-based PC shipment decline was the steepest since 2009 when the market was hit by the economic crisis.

During the quarter, Apple captured 12.7 percent of the market, down from 12.3 percent in 2Q14. Apple was ranked as the fourth largest PC vendor in the United States in 2Q15, based Continue Reading

Apple Adds Five New Videos to ‘Shot on iPhone 6′ Gallery

Posted by | July 9, 2015.

Apple today updated its “Shot on iPhone 6” site to add five new videos to the film section of the gallery. First added to the site in early June, the gallery showcases videos that were created using the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus, incorporating camera features like Slo-Mo, Time-Lapse, and more.

Shot on iPhone 6 video taken in Papua New Guinea
In addition to featuring these videos on its site, Apple also uploads them to YouTube and shows them on television. At least one of the videos added to the site today was previously used in a television commercial. Videos that Apple uploads come from iPhone users around the world, and today’s videos are from Bolivia, Alaska, Hawaii, and Papua New Guinea, with two videos coming from the last location.

The first video features a car racing across salt flats in Salar de Uyuni, Bolivia, while the second depicts a train in Anchorage, Alaska. All of the videos have music playing in the background, which is listed in the videos description, and they each end with the tagline “Shot on iPhone 6.”

<iframe src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/WAu9VxuE29A" width="560" Continue Reading

Apple Launches Public Betas of iOS 9 and OS X El Capitan

Posted by | July 9, 2015.

Just a day after releasing a new set of developer builds for iOS 9 and OS X El Capitan, Apple today launched its public beta program for both upcoming operating systems. Apple had announced at WWDC last month that it would launch the public betas in July, and a new support document published yesterday regarding changes to two-factor authentication hinted a launch was imminent.

iOS and Mac users interested in trying out the public betas can sign up on Apple’s beta software program page.

We’ll be looking for any changes specific to the public beta versions, but they are almost certainly essentially identical to the developer seeds released yesterday.

iOS 9 is the first major version of Apple’s mobile operating system to see a public beta release, as the company did not initiate the program for iOS until iOS 8.3 earlier this year. OS X users may already be familiar with the public beta process, as a similar program was in place for OS X Yosemite last year.

Continue Reading

‘Trackbuster’ Service Aims to Strip Tracking Information From Incoming Emails

Posted by | July 9, 2015.
trackbuster

Trackbuster is a new service that’s designed to remove invisible tracking codes from incoming emails, preventing companies and marketers from tracking information like the time an email was opened, IP address of the recipient, which links were clicked, and more.

Many of the popular email marketing tools on the market include tools for tracking various metrics of emails that are sent out, embedding cookies and web beacons, which are tiny tracking images that let the sender know when an email has been opened. Links or attachments that are clicked within an email are also often tracked using tracking codes.

There are often few options for blocking trackers embedded in emails and these involve feature-limiting functions like removing all images, but Trackbuster plans to change that by working in the background to analyze and remove hidden tracking codes from emails to prevent users from unwittingly sharing information.

Trackbuster is currently in beta and limited to Gmail and email accounts managed via Google Apps. The Trackbuster service can be connected to a Gmail account, where it scans for specific tracking strings. According to the team behind Trackbuster, the service only scans for codes within email addresses and it Continue Reading

Microsoft Releases Office 2016 for Mac With Updated Versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and More

Posted by | July 9, 2015.
officeformac2016

Following a beta testing period that began in March, Microsoft today announced the official launch of its next-generation office software designed for Mac users, Office 2016. The new Office 2016 software is the first major Mac release since Office 2011, and it brings new versions of Word, Excel, and PowerPoint with redesigned, Retina optimized interfaces, new features, and a focus on collaboration and cloud integration.

If you already use Office on a PC or iPad, you will find yourself right at home in Office 2016 for Mac. It works the way you expect, with the familiar Ribbon interface and powerful Task panes. Mac users will appreciate the modernized Office experience and the integration of Mac capabilities like Full Screen view and Multi-Touch gestures. With full Retina display support, your Office documents look sharper and more vibrant than ever.

Office for Mac 2016 has adopted many elements previously found in the Windows version of Office and the mobile Office apps for better cross-platform familiarity. For example, Office for Mac now uses the Ribbon to organize tools and formatting options, plus there’s a task pane for improved graphics customization in all three of the main Office apps, along with new themes Continue Reading

Apple’s Fourth Retail Store in Hong Kong Nearing Completion

Posted by | July 9, 2015.
Apple Store Hong Kong Canton Road

As construction continues on what will be Apple’s fourth retail store in Hong Kong, located in the upscale shopping area of Canton Road, new pictures of the store’s facade with an Apple logo shared by iMag on Facebook officially confirm that the Cupertino-based company will soon be opening up shop in the area. The store has been planned since at least August 2013 and under renovation for the past several months.

The new Canton Road location is expected to be one of the biggest Apple Stores in Asia and will mark the fourth store in Hong Kong alongside Causeway Bay, Festival Walk and IFC Mall locations. It remains unknown when the new store will open to customers, but Apple appears to be in the final stages of construction and should announce grand opening details on its website in the coming weeks or months.

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Facebook iOS App Introducing ‘See First’ Option for a More Customizable News Feed

Posted by | July 9, 2015.
Facebook_news_feed_screenshots_2.0

Facebook’s News Feed has gone through a number of changes over the years, with the company attempting to streamline the best way for users to visualize the content they care most about right at the top of the social media site. Today, Facebook hopes to be one step closer to that goal, with the roll out of a new “See First” option to its iOS app that will allow users to choose up to 30 people or fan pages that will automatically appear at the top of their News Feed every time they check the site (via Re/code).

Photo via The Verge
As Re/code reports, Facebook promises that any pages or people added to a user’s See First list won’t be used to target customers with ads. In fact, Facebook hopes that the more streamlined experience will encourage users to visit the site more often, and perhaps counterbalance the fact that users may generate less ad income for the company thanks to not needing to scroll through the News Feed for as long anymore.

“It sounds counterintuitive, but the worse we do on rankings, the more we make people try and scroll through, the more likely they Continue Reading

Facebook Planning Music Streaming Service to Compete With Apple Music and Others

Posted by | July 9, 2015.
App-Store-Facebook.png

Facebook is in the early stages of planning a dedicated music streaming service, with the intention of competing against the just-released Apple Music along with other industry heavyweights like Spotify and Rdio (via Music Ally).

A few reports earlier in the month tied the company to record labels with the idea of creating an ad-supported native video service, but according to sources speaking to Music Ally off the record, the bigger picture is to build an in-house music streaming service for Facebook users across the globe.

Sources told Music Ally that talks for the music-video side of things are at an advanced stage, with a rollout expected to happen in the next few months.

It’s Facebook’s plans to build on this with a Spotify-style audio streaming service that are making waves within the music industry, even though the launch date and specifics of the business model and payout formula have yet to be nailed down. Sources have told Music Ally that an audio service is very much on Facebook’s roadmap, but that both the social network and rightsholders realise that it has to get the monetised-video service right first.

Given Facebook’s history of acquiring various technology Continue Reading

T-Mobile Now Offers Unlimited Talk, Text and 4G LTE Data in Canada and Mexico at No Additional Charge [iOS Blog]

Posted by | July 9, 2015.
TMobile Mobile Without Borders

T-Mobile has announced a new “Un-carrier” move called “Mobile Without Borders” that enables customers with Simple Choice postpaid and prepaid plans to send and receive unlimited phone calls, text messages and use 4G LTE data in Canada and Mexico at no additional cost. The extended three-country plan will be available starting July 15 in select Canadian and Mexican markets.

T-Mobile customers with Simple Choice plans will be able to make unlimited calls to and from the United States to any number, including landlines and mobile phones, in Mexico and Canada, alongside unlimited text messaging and the full monthly allotment of 4G LTE data they would normally have in the U.S. at no extra charge. Music Freedom is included while roaming in Canada or Mexico.

Canadian and Mexican residents looking to take advantage of this T-Mobile promotion are out of luck, as Simple Choice customers must reside in the U.S. and primary usage must occur on T-Mobile’s network in the U.S. The carrier also warns that Simple Choice plans are not intended for extended international usage. Data Stash will be available for use while in Canada or Mexico later this Continue Reading

Serif’s Image Editing App ‘Affinity Photo’ Launches for Mac [Mac Blog]

Posted by | July 9, 2015.
affinityphoto1

Professional image editing app Affinity Photo, created by the same team that’s behind the award-winning Affinity Designer app, is today launching in the Mac App Store. Affinity Photo is designed to allow photographers to enhance, edit, and retouch images and is the culmination of five years of work.

The app includes a huge range of photo editing tools for everything from minor manipulations to drastic edits that alter shapes and remove objects from images. It’s been in beta testing since February and has been updated with features and improvements that beta testers have requested.

As an app oriented at professionals, Affinity Photo includes features like lens and exposure corrections, live filter layers, controls for channels and masks, advanced layer handling, RAW support, 16-bit channel editing, ICC color management, detailed EXIF info, Photoshop PSD import and export, and frequency separation editing that separates color from texture for retouching skin. According to Affinity Photo‘s developers, the speed at which it completes tasks and the app’s ability to show edits in real time are the most notable features to be aware of.

“The performance of the product is what we are most proud of,” said Tony Brightman, head of Affinity Continue Reading

Serif’s Image Editing App ‘Affinity Photo’ Launches for Mac [Mac Blog]

Posted by | July 9, 2015.
affinityphoto1

Professional image editing app Affinity Photo, created by the same team that’s behind the award-winning Affinity Designer app, is today launching in the Mac App Store. Affinity Photo is designed to allow photographers to enhance, edit, and retouch images and is the culmination of five years of work.

The app includes a huge range of photo editing tools for everything from minor manipulations to drastic edits that alter shapes and remove objects from images. It’s been in beta testing since February and has been updated with features and improvements that beta testers have requested.

As an app oriented at professionals, Affinity Photo includes features like lens and exposure corrections, live filter layers, controls for channels and masks, advanced layer handling, RAW support, 16-bit channel editing, ICC color management, detailed EXIF info, Photoshop PSD import and export, and frequency separation editing that separates color from texture for retouching skin. According to Affinity Photo‘s developers, the speed at which it completes tasks and the app’s ability to show edits in real time are the most notable features to be aware of.

“The performance of the product is what we are most proud of,” said Tony Brightman, head of Affinity Continue Reading

Hands-On With Apple’s ‘News’ App Introduced in iOS 9 Beta 3

Posted by | July 8, 2015.

Apple released the third beta of iOS 9 to developers this morning, bringing some significant changes to the operating system, including the new Apple News app.

First introduced at the Worldwide Developers Conference in June, “News” provides curated lists of personalized news content for iOS users, offering up content from popular websites and newspapers and displaying it in an iOS-friendly layout. We went hands-on with News to give our readers a detailed walkthrough of the app and the different features that it offers.

News is built around topics and channels that are selected by each individual user, which are then used to populate an individualized “For You” tab that displays a list of stories each day. There’s a Favorites section that display the sites you’ve added to a favorites list for quick browsing, a search feature for finding new content, and an Explore tab for casual browsing. Explore suggests topics or channels you might be interested based on what you’ve previously read.

If you come across a favorite story, you can add it to the “Saved” section in News, and you’re able to share stories with friends by using Continue Reading

iOS 9 Beta 3 Tidbits: 4×4 Folders on iPad, Screenshot and Selfie Folder, News App, and More

Posted by | July 8, 2015.
applenewsapp

Apple today released the third beta of iOS 9, which has turned out to be the biggest update to the operating system so far. It adds a revamped Music app with access to Apple Music, the News app that was first unveiled at WWDC, a new two-factor authentication system, and several other smaller tweaks, along with the traditional performance improvements and bug fixes.

With today’s changes, the beta is feeling faster, more polished, and more full featured. For beta testers and those eager to know what’s coming in the OS ahead of its official release, we’ve rounded up a complete list of all of the new changes introduced in iOS 9 beta 3 below.

News app – Today’s beta is the first iOS 9 beta to include Apple’s new News app, first announced at WWDC. The news app offers up a curated list of news stories based on each user’s preferences and interests. The News app appears to be available only to U.S. users for the time being.

Two-Factor Authentication – iOS 9 and OS X 10.11 El Capitan include an entirely revamped two-factor authentication system that Apple says is more streamlined.

App folders on iPadContinue Reading

iOS 9 and OS X El Capitan Public Betas Coming Soon

Posted by | July 8, 2015.
applepublicbetas

With the third betas of iOS 9 and OS X El Capitan, Apple introduced a new two-factor authentication system. A support document accompanying the feature explicitly mentions that it’s designed for “the public betas of iOS 9 and OS X El Capitan,” suggesting public beta access to the operating systems is coming soon.

When Apple introduced iOS 9 and OS X 10.11 El Capitan at its Worldwide Developers Conference, the company promised that a public beta would be available beginning in July, so customers who are enrolled in Apple’s public beta testing programs may not have much longer to wait to get access to the new software.

It is not clear exactly when the public beta will be seeded to customers, but the wording in the support document suggests beta testers will be receiving access to the same third betas of iOS 9 and OS X 10.11 that were seeded to developers this morning.

Public beta tests for major software releases are a relatively new feature from Apple, introduced for OS X with OS X Yosemite last year and iOS with the release of iOS 8.3 in March of 2015. iOS and Mac users Continue Reading

Apple Introduces Revamped Two-Factor Authentication for iOS 9 and OS X El Capitan

Posted by | July 8, 2015.
appletwostepauth

With the third betas of iOS 9 and OS X 10.11 El Capitan, Apple is introducing a revamped two-factor authentication system, according to both the beta release notes and a detailed support FAQ that outlines the changes.

The new two-factor authentication system is different from Apple’s existing two-step verification system, using “different methods” to trust devices and deliver verification codes. Apple also says it includes a “more streamlined user experience.”

Based on the support document, the new two-factor authentication system works similarly to the existing two-step verification system. Any device that you sign into using two-factor authentication in iOS 9 or El Capitan becomes a trusted device that can be used to verify identify when signing into other devices or services linked to an Apple ID.

Apple recommends that iOS 9 and OS X El Capitan beta testers using the new two-factor authentication system update all of their devices to iOS 9 or El Capitan for “the best experience.” As outlined in the release notes, customers who use two-factor authentication with older devices may be required to use a six-digit verification code at the end of a password instead of in a dedicated verification field.

If you Continue Reading

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