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U.S. Army asks contractors to imagine that Steve Jobs were designing America’s next-generation rifle

Thu, 02/14/2019 - 21:43

(function (w, d) { for (var i = 0, j = d.getElementsByTagName("ins"), k = j[i]; i < j.length; k = j[++i]){ if(k.className == "adPushupAds" && k.getAttribute("data-push") != "1") { ((w.adpushup = w.adpushup || {}).control = (w.adpushup.control || [])).push(k); k.setAttribute("data-push", "1");} } })(window, document); window.wvData=window.wvData||{};function wvtag(a,b){wvData[a]=b;} wvtag('id', 'j4zZ1Se4EO1HPk0xCvtD7Q'); wvtag('widget-style', { className: 'wv-circle-small', backgroundColor: '#FF0101' }); “The [U.S.] Army isn’t on the hunt for any old rifle for it’s Next Generation Squad Weapon program — it’s looking to spark a ‘revolution in small arms’ on par with what the iPhone did to consumer electronics,” Jared Keller reports for Task & Purpose.

“At least, that’s how Army officials at the Armament Research, Development and Engineering Center (ARDEC) at the Picatinny Arsenal in New Jersey described their overall goal in a conversation with Task & Purpose following the release of a formal Prototype Project Opportunity Notice calling on industry partners for a rapid prototyping and testing run of the brand-new platform. ‘Imagine that Steve Jobs and his engineers were trying to convert the iPod Touch to the first 3G iPhone,’ said Army Col. Elliott Caggins, project manager for soldier weapons. ‘There were a thousand technologies they could have put in the first iPhone but they were looking to mature the platform before they could actually go onto the system.'”

A concept drawing for the Next Generation Squad Weapon (U.S. Army)

A concept drawing for the Next Generation Squad Weapon (U.S. Army)

 
“Rather than slap future additions onto an outdated platform like the service’s current M4A1 improvement program, the Army wants future capabilities baked into the NGSW from the get-go in a ‘one end-all solution’ to replace both the M4 and the M249 Squad Automatic Weapon,” Keller reports. “One of three companies selected by the Army will ultimately end up cinching the contract to actually produce the weapon in all its glory. ‘We have hundreds of capabilities we can put into this weapons system, but we want to do it by holistically creating a system that that takes advantage of everything we’ve done in the past,’ he added. ‘This means its capabilities will only grow, just as the iPhone’s did.'”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Obviously, by invoking Steve Jobs and the iPhone, the U.S. Army is looking for a paradigm-shattering solution that’s capable of delivering significant disruption.

[Attribution: 9to5Mac. Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Fred Mertz” for the heads up.]

Apple taking its in-store iPhone push too far by promoting upgrades instead of repairs?

Thu, 02/14/2019 - 21:10

(function (w, d) { for (var i = 0, j = d.getElementsByTagName("ins"), k = j[i]; i < j.length; k = j[++i]){ if(k.className == "adPushupAds" && k.getAttribute("data-push") != "1") { ((w.adpushup = w.adpushup || {}).control = (w.adpushup.control || [])).push(k); k.setAttribute("data-push", "1");} } })(window, document); window.wvData=window.wvData||{};function wvtag(a,b){wvData[a]=b;} wvtag('id', 'j4zZ1Se4EO1HPk0xCvtD7Q'); wvtag('widget-style', { className: 'wv-circle-small', backgroundColor: '#FF0101' }); “It’s no secret that Apple has been pushing iPhone upgrades like never before over the last several months,” Chance Miller writes for 9to5Mac. “Yesterday, however, I visited an Apple store to have my iPhone XS Max serviced, and I realized just how far Apple has taken its iPhone upgrade pitch.”

“As anyone who visits an Apple store knows, you’re first greeted by a friendly person with an iPad at the store’s entrance. I told the greeter that I had a Genius Bar appointment for my iPhone XS Max, and she asked for a brief description of my problem,” Miller writes. “I explained that my device was randomly shutting down and wouldn’t come back on for several hours. As soon as I finished the explanation, the greeter said, ‘Have you considered upgrading to a new iPhone recently?'”

After I explained, she said “have you considered upgrading to a new iPhone recently?”

I guess she thought the phone in my hand was an iPhone X, not an XS.

But since when is it Apple Store policy to pitch an upgrade to someone there to get an existing iPhone repaired?

— Chance Miller (@ChanceHMiller) February 8, 2019

Bloomberg reported something similar earlier this week: ‘Apple asked retail employees to promote the new iPhones using methods not seen before. Technicians were told to push iPhone upgrades to consumers with out-of-warranty devices. Senior sales staff had to make sure other retail workers were suggesting upgrades, and easels offering generous trade-in deals for the iPhone XR were erected in stores,'” Miller writes. “If Apple wants to turn its retail stores into selling machines akin to car dealerships, that’s its prerogative. In my opinion, however, there’s a certain line that shouldn’t be crossed.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Sounds like a direction that wouldn’t sit well with a former Burberry CEO who had already amassed more than enough money to last several lifetimes. It also sounds like yet another reason (along with over-crowding and noise) to avoid Apple Retail Stores, the very places we used to seek out and make special plans to visit.

SEE ALSO:
Now is the time for Apple to re-think its retail priorities – February 13, 2019
Ron Johnson: Apple Retail Stores ‘are a victim of their own success’ – February 12, 2019
Apple’s new retail head needs to fix the biggest problem with Apple Retail Stores – February 8, 2019
What’s next for Apple’s Retail Store empire? – February 8, 2019
New Apple retail chief Deirdre O’Brien receives stock grant worth up to $8.2 million – February 8, 2019
Angela Ahrendts’ Apple departure points to wider mystery – February 6, 2019
Examining Angela Ahrendts’ five-year tenure as head of Apple Retail – February 6, 2019
Apple CEO Cook thanks Angela Ahrendts in company-wide memo to employees – February 6, 2019
Apple names third retail chief in seven years – February 6, 2019
Apple’s Angela Ahrendts to depart in April; Deirdre O’Brien named senior vice president of Retail + People – February 5, 2019
Apple’s Angela Ahrendts has a plan for next-gen retail – January 29, 2019
Why Angela Ahrendts left Burberry for Apple – June 20, 2018
Ralph Lauren to add Apple’s Angela Ahrendts to Board of Directors – May 9, 2018
Angela Ahrendts is again Apple’s best-paid employee – December 29, 2017
Apple now requires CEO Tim Cook to fly only on private jets – December 28, 2017
Apple CEO Tim Cook paid close to $102 million for fiscal 2017 – December 28, 2017
Forbes’ World’s 100 Most Powerful Women: Angela Ahrendts #13, Laurene Powell Jobs #14 – November 2, 2017
Deirdre O’Brien named Apple’s vice president of People – July 21, 2017
Tim Cook took home $10.3 million, Angela Ahrendts earned $25.7 million in 2015 – January 6, 2016
Apple’s Angela Ahrendts emerges as highest-paid U.S. woman with $83 million – May 5, 2015
Apple’s retail chief Angela Ahrendts paid $73.4 million in cash and stock last year; BoD member Drexler steps down – January 22, 2015
Apple’s new retail chief Ahrendts granted $68 million in restricted stock – May 6, 2014

Drake commissions $400,000 iPhone case covered in diamonds

Thu, 02/14/2019 - 20:01

(function (w, d) { for (var i = 0, j = d.getElementsByTagName("ins"), k = j[i]; i < j.length; k = j[++i]){ if(k.className == "adPushupAds" && k.getAttribute("data-push") != "1") { ((w.adpushup = w.adpushup || {}).control = (w.adpushup.control || [])).push(k); k.setAttribute("data-push", "1");} } })(window, document); window.wvData=window.wvData||{};function wvtag(a,b){wvData[a]=b;} wvtag('id', 'j4zZ1Se4EO1HPk0xCvtD7Q'); wvtag('widget-style', { className: 'wv-circle-small', backgroundColor: '#FF0101' }); “Drake is no stranger to luxurious purchases,” Emily Kirkpatrick reports for Page Six.

“After all, this is the same rapper who commissioned a 100-carat, life-sized owl pendant complete with its own cage and handed out free Chanel bags to guests at his birthday party,” Kirkpatrick reports. “But his latest blinged-out object might just be his most over-the-top yet.”

Kirkpatrick reports, “The ‘God’s Plan’ singer, 32, commissioned Jason of Beverly Hills (the same jeweler behind that owl pendant), to execute his latest opulent idea: a $400,000 iPhone X case made in 18k white gold and entirely studded with small blue diamonds.”

Instagram Photo

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Forget about the iPhone, there’s one case you don’t want to drop, give that it’s roughly 400 times more expensive than the iPhone inside it!

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Lynn Weiler” for the heads up.]

Apple analysts are bullish about rumored ‘Apple Prime’ media bundle

Thu, 02/14/2019 - 19:33

(function (w, d) { for (var i = 0, j = d.getElementsByTagName("ins"), k = j[i]; i < j.length; k = j[++i]){ if(k.className == "adPushupAds" && k.getAttribute("data-push") != "1") { ((w.adpushup = w.adpushup || {}).control = (w.adpushup.control || [])).push(k); k.setAttribute("data-push", "1");} } })(window, document); window.wvData=window.wvData||{};function wvtag(a,b){wvData[a]=b;} wvtag('id', 'j4zZ1Se4EO1HPk0xCvtD7Q'); wvtag('widget-style', { className: 'wv-circle-small', backgroundColor: '#FF0101' }); “With iPhone sales slowing down, Apple could rely on its Services business more than ever to drive growth,” JP Mangalindan writes for Yahoo Finance. “In order to expand that business, the tech giant may need to launch a ‘media bundle’ to rival Amazon’s.”

“In a report published in late January, Morgan Stanley analyst Katy Huberty contended Apple’s Services unit — which includes the App Store, AppleCare, iTunes, and iCloud — could reinvigorate Apple’s performance, particularly if Apple follows through later this year with the launch of a ‘media bundle,'” Mangalindan writes. “Here’s how an Apple media bundle, or an Apple Prime, could work: subscribers pay a fee each month to access a Netflix-style streaming service with original films and TV series — the tech giant has at least 20 original projects in the works — as well as Apple Music and a subscription news service.”

“The launch of a compelling Apple Prime-type package is key to shoring up Services growth, reiterates Bernstein analyst Toni Sacconaghi,” Mangalindan writes. “‘To beat our current expectation for deceleration of overall Services revenues from 24% growth in 2018 to 16% in 2019, Apple will need to add mid-to-high single digits growth back to Services revenues through successful launch of the ‘Apple Prime’ bundle including original video that we expect to be rolled out this Spring/Summer’ Sacconachi wrote in a report published on Monday.'”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Apple could make a more compelling “Prime” bundle than even Amazon can offer because their original content sounds like it will be better and Apple Music + Apple News/Texture are unmatched. If they rolled some iCloud storage deal into it, it’d be tough to resist for many, many people!

As soon as Apple launches their original content video service, an “Apple Prime” will make even more sense. — MacDailyNews, August 29, 2018

We’d really like to see a way to pay for all of the Apple services we choose for one price. Give us a bunch of tick boxes and let us choose our combination of iCloud storage, Apple Music, iTunes Match, etc. and let us pay a single price for all of our choices.MacDailyNews, October 17, 2016

SEE ALSO:
Apple plans star-studded March 25th event to unveil video and news subscription services – February 13, 2019
Apple to hold special media event on March 25th – February 12, 2019
Imagining an Apple All Access plan: What if Apple offered iPhone, iCloud, Apple Music, and more all for a single monthly fee? – August 29, 2018
A bundled media subscription would be good news for Apple users and for Apple itself – June 29, 2018
Apple reportedly considering subscription bundle of Apple Music, News and original video content – June 28, 2018
Apple is building a media platform like we’ve never seen before – June 27, 2018
Here’s how much Apple could make from streaming – June 27, 2018
Apple’s next $10 billion frontier is content creation – June 25, 2018
Apple intends to beat Netflix on price with standalone subscription to original content – June 19, 2018

Apple patent application reveals autonomous vehicles that can recharge each other

Thu, 02/14/2019 - 19:01

(function (w, d) { for (var i = 0, j = d.getElementsByTagName("ins"), k = j[i]; i < j.length; k = j[++i]){ if(k.className == "adPushupAds" && k.getAttribute("data-push") != "1") { ((w.adpushup = w.adpushup || {}).control = (w.adpushup.control || [])).push(k); k.setAttribute("data-push", "1");} } })(window, document); window.wvData=window.wvData||{};function wvtag(a,b){wvData[a]=b;} wvtag('id', 'j4zZ1Se4EO1HPk0xCvtD7Q'); wvtag('widget-style', { className: 'wv-circle-small', backgroundColor: '#FF0101' }); “Apple has filed for yet another patent (number 20190049996) involving an autonomous vehicle,” Dennis Sellers reports for Apple World Today. “Dubbed ‘peloton’ (a group or pack of vehicles) it involves at least two self-driving vehicles traveling together. As with a previous patent filing (number 10,108,202) it would allow one car to charge another even if both are moving.”

“Apple says that, in some cases, a navigation range of a vehicle from a given location is at least partially restricted by the internal energy storage of the vehicle, which can include fuel, electrical power, etc., which are consumed by one or more engines included in the vehicle to cause the vehicle to move,” Sellers reports. “While a vehicle can stop at a refueling station, recharging station, etc. [if one is available along the route] to replenish internal stored energy to extend the navigation range of the vehicle, such stops can extend the duration of a trip.”

Sellers reports, “This is why Apple thinks it would be great if one car could recharge another… ‘The vehicle can include a power management system which enables the vehicle to be electrically coupled to a battery included in another vehicle in the peloton, so that driving range differences between the vehicles can be reduced via load sharing via the electrical connection. The vehicle can include a power connector arm which extends a power connector to couple with an interface of another vehicle.'”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Prior art:

Disney dethrones Apple in survey of most ‘intimate’ brands

Thu, 02/14/2019 - 18:00

(function (w, d) { for (var i = 0, j = d.getElementsByTagName("ins"), k = j[i]; i < j.length; k = j[++i]){ if(k.className == "adPushupAds" && k.getAttribute("data-push") != "1") { ((w.adpushup = w.adpushup || {}).control = (w.adpushup.control || [])).push(k); k.setAttribute("data-push", "1");} } })(window, document); window.wvData=window.wvData||{};function wvtag(a,b){wvData[a]=b;} wvtag('id', 'j4zZ1Se4EO1HPk0xCvtD7Q'); wvtag('widget-style', { className: 'wv-circle-small', backgroundColor: '#FF0101' }); “As Walt Disney Co. prepares to pull its content from the existing streaming services and create its own, it has at least one good reason for optimism: Consumers feel closer to its brand than they do to any other, even Apple Inc.’s,” Emily Bary writes for MarketWatch. “That’s according to a new study of ‘brand intimacy’ by branding agency MBLM, which pegged Disney as tops in terms of its bond with consumers. Disney took the crown from Apple, which ranked first in the last three iterations of the study.”

“Apple slipped to No. 2 in this year’s MBLM survey, likely, in the research firm’s view, reflecting the company’s recent challenges with an elongated upgrade cycle, the pace of major feature introductions and relatively high price points,” Bary writes. “‘Apple’s largest product is reaching its date of saturation or exhaustion,’ said Mario Natarelli [a managing partner at MBLM], though the brand is still strong: 38% of Apple users surveyed said they couldn’t live without the company’s products.”

“Another hardware brand, Sony’s Playstation, occupied the seventh position in the survey’s results and represented the top pick among 18- to 24-year-olds. Microsoft Inc.’s Xbox brand came in 17th,” Bary writes. “The top ranking among food brands went to Chick-fil-A, which saw a large increase in ‘daily users,’ per the MBLM study.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Note: MLBM’s U.S. Top 10 Most Intimate Brands 2019:

Rank. Company (Quotient)
1. Disney (77.9)
2. Apple (70.9)
3. Amazon (69.8)
4. Chevrolet (62.5)
5. Netflix (61.4)
6. Harley-Davidson (58.4)
7. Sony Playstation (57.7)
8. YouTube (56.2)
9. Ford (54.8)
10. Chick-fil-A (54.7)

More info via MLBM here.

SEE ALSO:
YouTube unseats Apple atop ‘Brand Intimacy’ survey of millennials – February 7, 2019

Now that Amazon has bought eero, it’s time for Apple to revive the AirPort line

Thu, 02/14/2019 - 17:28

(function (w, d) { for (var i = 0, j = d.getElementsByTagName("ins"), k = j[i]; i < j.length; k = j[++i]){ if(k.className == "adPushupAds" && k.getAttribute("data-push") != "1") { ((w.adpushup = w.adpushup || {}).control = (w.adpushup.control || [])).push(k); k.setAttribute("data-push", "1");} } })(window, document); window.wvData=window.wvData||{};function wvtag(a,b){wvData[a]=b;} wvtag('id', 'j4zZ1Se4EO1HPk0xCvtD7Q'); wvtag('widget-style', { className: 'wv-circle-small', backgroundColor: '#FF0101' }); “After Apple discontinued its AirPort line-up (which was a mistake), one of my favorite replacements was the eero home Wi-Fi system, which is handsome, easy-to-use, and pricey,” Dennis Sellers writes for Apple World Today. “In other words, it’s a product Apple could’ve/should’ve made.”

Sellers writes, “Now that Amazon has scooped up eero, I wish the tech giant would revive the AirPort Express, AirPort Extreme, and AirPort Time Capsule.”

“I know that Apple may be spreading its resources over a lot of product lines,” Sellers writes, “but since the company wants to make connectivity and computing as simple as possible, it seems strange that they don’t want to control such an essential part of the home online experience.”

eero's 2nd generation  Home Wi-Fi System (1 eero + 2 eero Beacons)

eero’s 2nd generation Home Wi-Fi System (1 eero + 2 eero Beacons)

 
Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: As we wrote on Tuesday:

Most people aren’t going to make the extra effort to learn about Wi-Fi hardware, spend extra money and install it. They’re just going to settle for whatever rented device(s) their ISP offers. In fact, as owners of their own Wi-Fi hardware know, the ISP usually doesn’t go out of their way to help with such setups. That’s likely why Apple exited the business. The market is just too small and the cost of educating consumers as to why they might want something better than their ISP’s rented box(es) is too high.

SEE ALSO:
Why didn’t Apple buy eero instead of Amazon? – February 12, 2019
Amazon.com to buy mesh wi-fi system-maker eero for an undisclosed amount – February 11, 2019
Apple exited the home Wi-Fi market at the wrong time – December 31, 2018
Apple removes all AirPort products from online and retail stores – November 17, 2018
How to set up your home network for many Apple TVs, Macs, iPhones, and iPads – June 12, 2018
Apple begins to sell out of AirPort base stations – May 17, 2018
Requiem for the AirPort base station: A testament to everything Apple was and isn’t anymore – April 27, 2018
Apple makes yet another short-sighted decision: Apple has discontinued a product that it should have made a cornerstone of its home automation and entertainment ecosystem – April 27, 2018
Apple’s decision to discontinue AirPort products is the wrong decision at the wrong time – April 27, 2018
Apple pulls plug on AirPort Wi-Fi router business – April 26, 2018
eero’s new mesh WiFi system packs more power in an Apple-esque design – June 29, 2017
AppleInsider reviews eero Wi-Fi: ‘A solid option for Apple’s outgoing AirPort’ – February 27, 2017
With eero, you can kiss slow Wi-Fi goodbye forever – February 10, 2017

Why Apple is asking for 50% from publishers for upcoming news service

Thu, 02/14/2019 - 17:00

(function (w, d) { for (var i = 0, j = d.getElementsByTagName("ins"), k = j[i]; i < j.length; k = j[++i]){ if(k.className == "adPushupAds" && k.getAttribute("data-push") != "1") { ((w.adpushup = w.adpushup || {}).control = (w.adpushup.control || [])).push(k); k.setAttribute("data-push", "1");} } })(window, document); window.wvData=window.wvData||{};function wvtag(a,b){wvData[a]=b;} wvtag('id', 'j4zZ1Se4EO1HPk0xCvtD7Q'); wvtag('widget-style', { className: 'wv-circle-small', backgroundColor: '#FF0101' }); “Apple says it wants to help save journalism,” Peter Kafka writes for Recode. “All it wants in return is half of all the revenue journalists make when they sell their stuff through a forthcoming new Apple subscription service. Cue internet outrage.”

MacDailyNews Take: “Internet outrage” is redundant.

“So what is Apple thinking now?” Kafka writes. “Here’s the short answer, which I’ve cobbled together by talking to industry sources: Apple has already signed many publishers to deals where they’ll get 50 percent of the revenue Apple generates through subscriptions to its news service, which is currently called Texture and will be relaunched as a premium version of Apple News this spring. And some publishers are happy to do it, because they think Apple will sign up many millions of people to the new service. And they’d rather have a smaller percentage of a bigger number than a bigger chunk of a smaller number.”

Kafka writes, “In the words of a publishing executive who is optimistic about Apple’s plans: ‘It’s the absolute dollars paid out that matters, not the percentage.'”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Here’s an even shorter explanation for the headline: Basic math.

SEE ALSO:
Apple plans star-studded March 25th event to unveil video and news subscription services – February 13, 2019
Apple to hold special media event on March 25th – February 12, 2019
Publishers chafe at Apple’s terms for subscription news service – February 12, 2019
Apple to relaunch Texture magazine subscription service as soon as spring 2019 – December 12, 2018
Apple to shut down Texture’s Windows app in July – May 4, 2018
Amazon considered buying Texture before Apple bit – March 13, 2018
Apple pushes deeper into news – March 13, 2018
Apple to acquire Next Issue Media and its digital magazine-subscription service Texture – March 12, 2018

Security hole in macOS Mojave allows rogue apps to access your Safari browsing history

Thu, 02/14/2019 - 16:24

(function (w, d) { for (var i = 0, j = d.getElementsByTagName("ins"), k = j[i]; i < j.length; k = j[++i]){ if(k.className == "adPushupAds" && k.getAttribute("data-push") != "1") { ((w.adpushup = w.adpushup || {}).control = (w.adpushup.control || [])).push(k); k.setAttribute("data-push", "1");} } })(window, document); window.wvData=window.wvData||{};function wvtag(a,b){wvData[a]=b;} wvtag('id', 'j4zZ1Se4EO1HPk0xCvtD7Q'); wvtag('widget-style', { className: 'wv-circle-small', backgroundColor: '#FF0101' }); “An attempt by Apple to protect your Safari browsing history in macOS Mojave has a security hole which allows full access by a rogue app, says a Mac and iOS developer,” Ben Lovejoy writes for 9to5Mac.

“Prior to Mojave, your browsing history was freely available to any app that looked inside ~/Library/Safari. In macOS 10.14, however, Apple locked down access so tightly that you can’t even list the contents in Terminal – in theory,” Lovejoy writes. “Jeff Johnson, a developer who worked on Knox and RSS reader Vienna before creating StopTheMadness and Underpass, discovered a flaw in the protection.”

“It’s not a huge issue, as sandboxed Mac apps, like those from the Mac App Store, are unable to access folders outside of their containers, so this wouldn’t be exploitable by malicious code in those apps. To be at risk, you’d have to authorize an app downloaded from elsewhere – which is something you should only ever do with a developer you trust,” Lovejoy writes. “Johnson says he has passed full details of the Safari browsing history vulnerability to Apple, but expects a fix to take some time.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Note: Johnson explains further:

Don’t Panic. Mojave privacy protection is a new feature in macOS 10.14. Any weakness in the privacy protection is simply a flaw in the new feature. You’re as safe on Mojave as you were on High Sierra, which did not have this feature at all. You just might not be safer on Mojave than you were on High Sierra.

Apple’s workaround for German fake injunction exacerbates Qualcomm’s antitrust woes

Thu, 02/14/2019 - 16:12

(function (w, d) { for (var i = 0, j = d.getElementsByTagName("ins"), k = j[i]; i < j.length; k = j[++i]){ if(k.className == "adPushupAds" && k.getAttribute("data-push") != "1") { ((w.adpushup = w.adpushup || {}).control = (w.adpushup.control || [])).push(k); k.setAttribute("data-push", "1");} } })(window, document); window.wvData=window.wvData||{};function wvtag(a,b){wvData[a]=b;} wvtag('id', 'j4zZ1Se4EO1HPk0xCvtD7Q'); wvtag('widget-style', { className: 'wv-circle-small', backgroundColor: '#FF0101' }); “At the end of my shareholder-value-focused analysis of Qualcomm’s $1.5 billion deposit for the immediate enforcement of a Germany-wide patent injunction against the iPhone 7 and the iPhone 8, I predicted it was going to be ‘a Pyrrhic victory.’ By now it’s clear that ‘Pyrrhic victory’ is a euphemism,” Florian Mueller writes for FOSS Patents. “It’s a total disaster for Qualcomm, actually.”

Mueller writes, “A waste of money; zero leverage over Apple (which as of today is again selling all iPhone models in Germany without restrictions); zero proof of patent portfolio strength; a significant risk of additional EU antitrust problems because it underpins a complaint by Apple that had already given rise to preliminary investigations by the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Competition (DG COMP); and adverse effects on Qualcomm’s reputation in U.S. and Asian competition circles.”

#iPhone 7 and iPhone 8 available again on #Apple‘s German online store. Using #Qualcomm baseband chips only in those devices to work around $QCOM‘s Munich injunction. Removal of #Intel chips raises #antitrust issues. Complaint with @EU_Competition is pending. pic.twitter.com/d1b8uCOi6B

— Florian Mueller (@FOSSpatents) February 14, 2019

“With what has happened now, Apple’s warnings against the potential anticompetitive effects of Qualcomm’s enforcement of patent injunctions have been validated,” Mueller writes. “Indeed, the only practical alternative that Apple apparently had was to use Qualcomm chips again, which means Intel loses some potential sales.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: In a nutshell, Apple makes Qualcomm look like witless idiots.

SEE ALSO:
Apple resumes selling iPhones in Germany, but with only Qualcomm modems – February 14, 2019
South Korean Supreme Court upholds $242 million antitrust judgement against Qualcomm – February 12, 2019
Bad news piles up for Qualcomm in Apple dispute – February 10, 2019
Apple wins damages ruling against Qualcomm – February 5, 2019
U.S. FTC: Evidence is ‘overwhelming’ that Qualcomm engaged in exclusionary, anticompetitive conduct – January 30, 2019
Leaked emails reveal new reason why Apple went to war with Qualcomm – January 18, 2019
Apple’s COO Jeff Williams delivers blistering testimony on Qualcomm’s ‘onerous demands’ – January 15, 2019
Apple was paying Qualcomm over $1 billion per year in licensing – January 15, 2019

Lee Clow, known for Apple’s ‘1984’ and ‘Think Different’ campaign, retires at 75

Thu, 02/14/2019 - 15:00

(function (w, d) { for (var i = 0, j = d.getElementsByTagName("ins"), k = j[i]; i < j.length; k = j[++i]){ if(k.className == "adPushupAds" && k.getAttribute("data-push") != "1") { ((w.adpushup = w.adpushup || {}).control = (w.adpushup.control || [])).push(k); k.setAttribute("data-push", "1");} } })(window, document); window.wvData=window.wvData||{};function wvtag(a,b){wvData[a]=b;} wvtag('id', 'j4zZ1Se4EO1HPk0xCvtD7Q'); wvtag('widget-style', { className: 'wv-circle-small', backgroundColor: '#FF0101' }); “Lee Clow, whose ads helped put Apple Inc. on the map, is retiring from the agency he joined five decades ago, he announced on Thursday,” Alexandra Bruell reports for The Wall Street Journal.

“Mr. Clow, 75, joined Chiat/Day — now TBWA\Chiat\Day and part of Omnicom Group Inc. — around 45 years ago as an art director. He worked closely with Apple for more than 30 of those years. Over time, he built a relationship with former Apple Chief Executive Steve Jobs and helped create the dystopian ‘1984’ Super Bowl commercial that launched the Macintosh computer, as well as the ‘Think Different’ campaign in 1997,” Bruell reports. “The “1984” ad is credited with helping transform the Super Bowl into an advertising showcase where marketers compete to produce glitzy, high-profile spots.”

“Mr. Clow is chairman and founder of Omnicom’s TBWA\Media Arts Lab, which was created in 2006 to service Apple as its only client,” Bruell reports. “‘During his long partnership with Steve and Apple, Lee told powerful visual stories that elevated new technologies with the passion, creativity and ingenuity that define our own humanity,’ Apple CEO Tim Cook said in a statement. ‘He helped Apple carry itself through times of challenge, and his work inspired audiences to look beyond the horizon as an exciting future came into view.'”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Legend.

SEE ALSO:
The real story behind Apple’s ‘Think Different’ campaign – December 15, 2011
TBWA/Media Arts Lab’s Lee Clow hands over Apple Inc. ad account reins to Duncan Milner – October 30, 2009
Apple’s ‘1984’ commercial named best Super Bowl ad ever – February 1, 2007

Apple resumes selling iPhones in Germany, but with only Qualcomm modems

Thu, 02/14/2019 - 14:31

(function (w, d) { for (var i = 0, j = d.getElementsByTagName("ins"), k = j[i]; i < j.length; k = j[++i]){ if(k.className == "adPushupAds" && k.getAttribute("data-push") != "1") { ((w.adpushup = w.adpushup || {}).control = (w.adpushup.control || [])).push(k); k.setAttribute("data-push", "1");} } })(window, document); window.wvData=window.wvData||{};function wvtag(a,b){wvData[a]=b;} wvtag('id', 'j4zZ1Se4EO1HPk0xCvtD7Q'); wvtag('widget-style', { className: 'wv-circle-small', backgroundColor: '#FF0101' }); “Apple Inc said Thursday that it will resume selling older iPhone models in its stores in Germany after they were banned last year, but only with chips from Qualcomm Inc, which is in a global legal battle against the Cupertino company,” Stephen Nellis reports for Reuters. “Apple said it had ‘no choice’ but to stop using some chips from Intel Corp in iPhones headed to Germany in order to comply with a patent infringement lawsuit Qualcomm won against Apple there in December.”

“Apple began phasing in Intel’s modem chips in 2016 after years of using chips exclusively from Qualcomm. In last year’s iPhone models, Apple dropped Qualcomm’s chips completely in favor of Intel’s,” Nellis reports. “But Qualcomm has continued to supply Apple with chips for older models, and Apple on Thursday said it would use only those for German iPhone 7 and 8 models.”

“‘Qualcomm is attempting to use injunctions against our products to try to get Apple to succumb to their extortionist demands,’ Apple said in a statement to Reuters,” Nellis reports. “Newer iPhones with Intel chips remain on sale in Germany.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: “Apple resumes selling iPhones in Germany, but with only Qualcomm modems” which perfectly highlight the issue. Qualcomm has won nothing but a very minor battle; selling a handful of extra modems inside older iPhones in Germany in exchange for losing their extortion racket when all is said and done.

SEE ALSO:
South Korean Supreme Court upholds $242 million antitrust judgement against Qualcomm – February 12, 2019
Bad news piles up for Qualcomm in Apple dispute – February 10, 2019
Apple wins damages ruling against Qualcomm – February 5, 2019
U.S. FTC: Evidence is ‘overwhelming’ that Qualcomm engaged in exclusionary, anticompetitive conduct – January 30, 2019
Leaked emails reveal new reason why Apple went to war with Qualcomm – January 18, 2019
Apple’s COO Jeff Williams delivers blistering testimony on Qualcomm’s ‘onerous demands’ – January 15, 2019
Apple was paying Qualcomm over $1 billion per year in licensing – January 15, 2019

Apple stealthily updates British and Australian Siri voices on HomePod

Wed, 02/13/2019 - 23:36

(function (w, d) { for (var i = 0, j = d.getElementsByTagName("ins"), k = j[i]; i < j.length; k = j[++i]){ if(k.className == "adPushupAds" && k.getAttribute("data-push") != "1") { ((w.adpushup = w.adpushup || {}).control = (w.adpushup.control || [])).push(k); k.setAttribute("data-push", "1");} } })(window, document); window.wvData=window.wvData||{};function wvtag(a,b){wvData[a]=b;} wvtag('id', 'j4zZ1Se4EO1HPk0xCvtD7Q'); wvtag('widget-style', { className: 'wv-circle-small', backgroundColor: '#FF0101' }); “Over the past 24 hours, we’ve seen a handful of reports talking about a new update to the speaking voice of Siri on HomePod in a few regions,” Mitchel Broussard reports for MacRumors.

“These reports are mostly located in the United Kingdom and Australia, and mention the British (Male and Female) and Australian (Male and Female) speaking voices for the assistant, specifically on Apple’s HomePod smart speaker,” Broussard reports. “MacRumors readers described the Australian Female and British Male voices as ‘more natural’ and ‘much clearer,’ and similar reports have emerged about other voices. Although there are many different descriptions for each voice, the consensus appears to be that the tweaks make Siri sound more human-like.”

“HomePod users can choose any Siri voice no matter the region they are located in, but as of now the vast majority of these reports appear to be located in the same regions as the voice they represent,” Broussard reports. “This may be the beginning of a wider rollout, but that’s still unclear at this point.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Aussie female Siri certainly sound a lot more natural:

So will the real #Siri please stand up. pic.twitter.com/8a8LCyarqI

— Callum (@callumjcoe) February 13, 2019

To change Siri’s voice on your HomePod:

1. Launch the Home app on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch
2. Long press or 3D touch on the HomePod icon
3. Tap Settings
4. Scroll down to Siri and choose Siri Voice
5. Tap Siri Voice to choose the desired accent and gender

Apple plans star-studded March 25th event to unveil video and news subscription services

Wed, 02/13/2019 - 22:39

(function (w, d) { for (var i = 0, j = d.getElementsByTagName("ins"), k = j[i]; i < j.length; k = j[++i]){ if(k.className == "adPushupAds" && k.getAttribute("data-push") != "1") { ((w.adpushup = w.adpushup || {}).control = (w.adpushup.control || [])).push(k); k.setAttribute("data-push", "1");} } })(window, document); window.wvData=window.wvData||{};function wvtag(a,b){wvData[a]=b;} wvtag('id', 'j4zZ1Se4EO1HPk0xCvtD7Q'); wvtag('widget-style', { className: 'wv-circle-small', backgroundColor: '#FF0101' }); “Apple Inc. is planning to unveil video and news subscription offerings next month, the first major new digital services from the company since 2015,” Anousha Sakoui and Mark Gurman report for Bloomberg. “The Cupertino, California-based technology giant is planning a March 25 event to announce both services, according to people familiar with the plan. The iPhone maker invited Hollywood stars, including Jennifer Aniston, Reese Witherspoon, Jennifer Garner and director JJ Abrams, to attend, one of the people said.”

“The video service is similar to Amazon.com Inc.’s Prime Video and Netflix Inc. products, and will include TV shows and movies either acquired or funded by Apple,” Sakoui and Gurman report. “The paid service will launch by the summer, the people said.”

“The company’s premium news service will be integrated into the Apple News app, letting consumers subscribe to a bundle of titles for a monthly fee,” Sakoui and Gurman report. “BuzzFeed earlier reported that the News subscription service would launch on March 25.”

“Apple has been working on its streaming video service for a number of years,” Sakoui and Gurman report. “The content is likely to be integrated into Apple’s TV app on iPhones, iPads, and Apple TVs, which launched in 2016.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Not too long to wait now (“April” or “by the summer”) – and much better than having to wait until fall which we’ve long feared would be the case!

SEE ALSO:
Apple is targeting April to launch its new video service – February 13, 2019
Apple to hold special media event on March 25th – February 12, 2019
Publishers chafe at Apple’s terms for subscription news service – February 12, 2019
Oprah Winfrey hires Terry Wood from Netflix to head up Apple’s original content production – February 7, 2019
Apple patent application for Apple TV interface reveals aspects of live TV streaming service – February 5, 2019
Morgan Stanley: Apple can return to $1 trillion market value this year with new media bundling, video streaming services – February 4, 2019
Apple’s deep bench of original programming continues to grow – January 18, 2019
Apple to relaunch Texture magazine subscription service as soon as spring 2019 – December 12, 2018
Apple to shut down Texture’s Windows app in July – May 4, 2018
Apple is rumored to be eying Condé Nast acquisition – May 1, 2018
Amazon considered buying Texture before Apple bit – March 13, 2018
Apple pushes deeper into news – March 13, 2018
Apple to acquire Next Issue Media and its digital magazine-subscription service Texture – March 12, 2018

The great Equifax mystery: 17 months later, the stolen data has never been found

Wed, 02/13/2019 - 22:27

(function (w, d) { for (var i = 0, j = d.getElementsByTagName("ins"), k = j[i]; i < j.length; k = j[++i]){ if(k.className == "adPushupAds" && k.getAttribute("data-push") != "1") { ((w.adpushup = w.adpushup || {}).control = (w.adpushup.control || [])).push(k); k.setAttribute("data-push", "1");} } })(window, document); window.wvData=window.wvData||{};function wvtag(a,b){wvData[a]=b;} wvtag('id', 'j4zZ1Se4EO1HPk0xCvtD7Q'); wvtag('widget-style', { className: 'wv-circle-small', backgroundColor: '#FF0101' }); “On September 7, 2017, the world heard an alarming announcement from credit ratings giant Equifax: In a brazen cyber-attack, somebody had stolen sensitive personal information from more than 140 million people, nearly half the population of the U.S.,” Kate Fazzini reports for CNBC. “It was the consumer data security scandal of the decade. The information included social security numbers, driver’s license numbers, information from credit disputes and other personal details. CEO Richard Smith stepped down under fire. Lawmakers changed credit freeze laws and instilled new regulatory oversight of credit ratings agencies.”

“Then, something unusual happened. The data disappeared. Completely,” Fazzini reports. “CNBC talked to eight experts, including data ‘hunters’ who scour the dark web for stolen information, senior cybersecurity managers, top executives at financial institutions, senior intelligence officials who played a part in the investigation and consultants who helped support it. All of them agreed that a breach happened, and personal information from 143 million people was stolen. But none of them knows where the data is now. It’s never appeared on any hundreds of underground websites selling stolen information. Security experts haven’t seen the data used for in any of the ways they’d expect in a theft like this — not for impersonating victims, not for accessing other websites, nothing.”

Fazzini reports, “Most experts familiar with the case now believe that the thieves were working for a foreign government, and are using the information not for financial gain, but to try and identify and recruit spies.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Yes, one would certainly have expected major problems long before now if the data including Social Security numbers and other such sensitive personal information were floating around.

SEE ALSO:
Equifax website hacked again, distributes fake Adobe Flash plugin spreading malware – October 12, 2017
Equifax victims may face another hassle in buying an iPhone – September 14, 2017
Equifax’s latest breach is very possibly the worst leak of personal info ever – September 8, 2017

Apple is targeting April to launch its new video service

Wed, 02/13/2019 - 22:15

(function (w, d) { for (var i = 0, j = d.getElementsByTagName("ins"), k = j[i]; i < j.length; k = j[++i]){ if(k.className == "adPushupAds" && k.getAttribute("data-push") != "1") { ((w.adpushup = w.adpushup || {}).control = (w.adpushup.control || [])).push(k); k.setAttribute("data-push", "1");} } })(window, document); window.wvData=window.wvData||{};function wvtag(a,b){wvData[a]=b;} wvtag('id', 'j4zZ1Se4EO1HPk0xCvtD7Q'); wvtag('widget-style', { className: 'wv-circle-small', backgroundColor: '#FF0101' }); “Apple is in the final stages of preparing its new streaming video service, which will feature free original content for device owners and a subscription platform for existing digital services,” Alex Sherman reports for CNBC. “But don’t expect Netflix to be a part of it, and HBO’s participation is also in doubt, according to people familiar with the matter.”

“Apple is aiming to launch service in April or early May. It will allow customers to sign up for existing digital streaming products and watch them in the iOS TV application, similar to Amazon’s Prime Video Channels,” Sherman reports. “Apple wants to simplify mobile video viewing by housing content in one app instead of forcing users to launch separate apps for each service.”

“Lions Gate’s Starz; CBS, which owns Showtime; and Viacom are expected to offer subscription streaming services on the Apple platform, according to people familiar with the matter,” Sherman reports. “Netflix and Hulu aren’t part of Amazon Prime Video Channels and aren’t expected to be a part of Apple’s product either, according to people familiar with the matter.”

MacDailyNews Take: Our moms could start a streaming service and Starz and Showtime would sign on.

“HBO may join its premium network brethren but isn’t as far along in discussions with Apple, one of the people said. Apple hasn’t offered HBO the same terms that Amazon offered, said the person,” Sherman reports. “Apple is pushing for a 30 percent cut on every customer that subscribes to an over-the-top video service through its streaming service, three of the people said. Currently, Apple takes a 15 percent cut on revenue from customers that sign up to HBO Now, Netflix, and other streaming apps through the App Store, two people said.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: An April launch would be excellent! We’re really only interested in Apple’s new original content. We already have subscriptions to HBO and Netflix, thanks. While it’d certainly be nice to have both (and Hulu) fully integrated into Apple’s TV app, we’ll survive without them for the time being – until the holdouts realize that they’d do better inside the TV app that going it alone (which they eventually will; see the iTunes Store holdouts of yore – you’ll find them in the iTunes Store.)

SEE ALSO:
Oprah Winfrey hires Terry Wood from Netflix to head up Apple’s original content production – February 7, 2019
Apple patent application for Apple TV interface reveals aspects of live TV streaming service – February 5, 2019
Apple’s deep bench of original programming continues to grow – January 18, 2019
Apple among those in bidding war for JJ Abrams’ Bad Robot banner – January 18, 2019
Apple nears deal for sci-fi series from Simon Kinberg and David Weil – January 18, 2019
– December 6, 2018
Apple seeks TV success on its own terms with little or no sex, violence, or politics – September 22, 2018
Apple orders a sitcom from ‘It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia’ creators – August 10, 2018
TV series based on Min Jin Lee’s ‘Pachinko’ in the works at Apple – August 8, 2018
Apple announces multi-year partnership with Oprah Winfrey – June 15, 2018
Apple inks content deal with Oprah Winfrey – June 15, 2018
Apple’s original content is further along than you think with 16 new shows in the works – June 15, 2018
Apple is close to a deal for an animated feature film – June 14, 2018
Breaking Bad’s Aaron Paul join Apple’s upcoming drama ‘Are You Sleeping?’ – June 14, 2018
Apple nabs creative development executive Layne Eskridge from Netflix – June 12, 2018
Apple hires Broadway Video’s Kelly Costello as business affairs executive – June 12, 2018
‘Master’s of Sex’ star Lizzy Caplan joins cast of upcoming Apple series ‘Are You Sleeping’ – June 7, 2018
Apple TV: The underestimated story – June 5, 2018
‘Once Upon a Time’ co-creators sign on as showrunners for Steven Spielberg ‘Amazing Stories’ reboot for Apple – May 22, 2018
Apple inks deal for Isaac Asimov ‘Foundation’ TV series – April 10, 2018
Apple aiming original TV series launches for spring or summer 2019 – March 26, 2018
Is this Apple’s plan for Apple TV? – March 22, 2018
Apple orders animated comedy ‘Central Park’ from ‘Bob’s Burgers’ creator Loren Bouchard – March 12, 2018
Apple hires Carol Trussell as Head Of Production for Worldwide Video Programming division – February 22, 2018
Apple’s TV tactics: Can Cupertino figure out the television formula? – January 16, 2018
Apple orders ‘See’ series, a futuristic drama from ‘Hunger Games’ director – January 10, 2018
Life after iTunes: Apple’s big media challenge – January 9, 2018
Apple developing new original drama ‘Are You Sleeping’ starring Octavia Spencer – January 3, 2018
Three more Amazon Studios executives move to Apple – December 26, 2017
Apple orders space drama series from ‘Battlestar Galactica’ producer Ronald D. Moore – December 15, 2017
Apple gives Jennifer Aniston-Reese Witherspoon series a 2-season order, confirms Spielberg’s ‘Amazing Stories’ reboot – November 9, 2017
Apple outbids Netflix for show starring Jennifer Aniston and Reese Witherspoon – November 8, 2017
Apple eyes iconic studio as base for Hollywood production push; vying with Netflix for high-profile Jennifer Aniston drama – September 1, 2017
The magic and misdirection of Apple’s streaming strategy – August 18, 2017
Apple wants to spend $1 billion on 10 original TV shows over the next year – August 16, 2017
Former WGN America president Matt Cherniss joins Apple in latest TV push – August 15, 2017
Rivals leaving Apple behind as Apple TV remains stuck in a test pattern – August 8, 2017
Apple’s so-called TV ‘strategy’ continues to be an embarrassing joke – June 30, 2017
Apple poaches Sony TV executives to lead major push into original content – June 16, 2017

Apple sharply increases testing of autonomous vehicles on public roads

Wed, 02/13/2019 - 21:46

(function (w, d) { for (var i = 0, j = d.getElementsByTagName("ins"), k = j[i]; i < j.length; k = j[++i]){ if(k.className == "adPushupAds" && k.getAttribute("data-push") != "1") { ((w.adpushup = w.adpushup || {}).control = (w.adpushup.control || [])).push(k); k.setAttribute("data-push", "1");} } })(window, document); window.wvData=window.wvData||{};function wvtag(a,b){wvData[a]=b;} wvtag('id', 'j4zZ1Se4EO1HPk0xCvtD7Q'); wvtag('widget-style', { className: 'wv-circle-small', backgroundColor: '#FF0101' }); “Apple Inc has sharply increased its efforts to test self-driving cars on public roads but lags far behind market leader Waymo on a key safety metric, according to data released on Wednesday by the California Department of Motor Vehicles,” Stephen Nellis and Alexandria Sage report for Reuters. “Apple, which has kept details of its self-driving program under wraps, put in 79,745 miles (128,337 km) of testing in California in 2018, still far short of 10 million miles of testing on roads around the world by Alphabet Inc’s Waymo. But the miles put in by Apple last year far surpassed the 838 miles of testing that the iPhone maker did the previous year.”

“The data was part of California regulators’ annual so-called ‘disengagement reports,’ which track how often a human safety driver must intervene to take control from a self-driving system during testing on public roads,” Nellis and Sage report. “Waymo led the industry with 11,017 miles between disengagements in 2018, a 50 percent improvement from 5,595 miles the year before. Waymo said the improvement came despite driving 1.2 million miles in California, where roads are much busier than other areas where it is testing vehicles, such as suburban Arizona… Apple, by contrast, came in dead last, logging just over one mile per disengagement.”

“In a letter to regulators, Apple said its approach to reporting disengagements had been ‘conservative’ and that its report was ‘over-inclusive,'” Nellis and Sage report. “Apple said it changed how it categorized disengagements starting in July 2018. Since then, the company said it had driven about 2,000 miles between what it calls ‘important disengagements,’ which it defined as ‘situations that might have resulted in a safety-related event or a violation of the rules of the road.’ At least two of those ‘important disengagements’ happened when other human drivers hit its test vehicles, Apple said.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Looks like Project Titan testing, at least, is ramping up!

Again, as we wrote this morning, the disengagement data “tells us nothing of the testing tolerances Apple has in place versus the others, for example.”

SEE ALSO:
California DMV data shows Apple ranks dead last in autonomous vehicle disengagements – February 13, 2019

U.S. charges former top Apple lawyer with insider trading

Wed, 02/13/2019 - 21:22

(function (w, d) { for (var i = 0, j = d.getElementsByTagName("ins"), k = j[i]; i < j.length; k = j[++i]){ if(k.className == "adPushupAds" && k.getAttribute("data-push") != "1") { ((w.adpushup = w.adpushup || {}).control = (w.adpushup.control || [])).push(k); k.setAttribute("data-push", "1");} } })(window, document); window.wvData=window.wvData||{};function wvtag(a,b){wvData[a]=b;} wvtag('id', 'j4zZ1Se4EO1HPk0xCvtD7Q'); wvtag('widget-style', { className: 'wv-circle-small', backgroundColor: '#FF0101' }); “The former top corporate lawyer at Apple Inc was criminally charged by the U.S. Department of Justice on Wednesday with insider trading ahead of six of the iPhone maker’s quarterly earnings announcements,” Jonathan Stempel reports for Reuters. “Authorities said Gene Levoff exploited his positions as corporate secretary, head of corporate law and co-chairman of a committee that reviewed draft copies of Apple’s financial results to trade illegally between 2011 and 2016. Prosecutors said Levoff, 45, of San Carlos, California, generated $604,000 in illegal gains, including realized profit and avoided losses, before Apple terminated his decade-long employment in September.”

“Levoff faces one count of securities fraud, carrying a maximum 20-year prison term and a $5 million fine,” Stempel reports. “‘Levoff’s alleged exploitation of his access to Apple’s financial information was particularly egregious given his responsibility for implementing the company’s insider trading compliance policy,’ Antonia Chion, associate director of the SEC’s enforcement division, said in a statement.”

“As co-chairman of Apple’s disclosure committee, Levoff helped Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook and his predecessor, Steve Jobs, ensure the timeliness, accuracy and proper oversight of company disclosures, including financial results, according to authorities,” Stempel reports. “Despite this, prosecutors said Levoff bought and sold more than $14 million of Apple stock, including $10 million in July 2015 alone, after being given draft earnings materials but before the results were made public. Authorities said Levoff knew or should have known he was breaking the law, citing a February 2011 email where he warned employees not to trade on material nonpublic information.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: If found guilty, prosecute him to the fullest extent of the law.

Making sense of Apple’s frustrating wearables comparisons

Wed, 02/13/2019 - 20:28

(function (w, d) { for (var i = 0, j = d.getElementsByTagName("ins"), k = j[i]; i < j.length; k = j[++i]){ if(k.className == "adPushupAds" && k.getAttribute("data-push") != "1") { ((w.adpushup = w.adpushup || {}).control = (w.adpushup.control || [])).push(k); k.setAttribute("data-push", "1");} } })(window, document); window.wvData=window.wvData||{};function wvtag(a,b){wvData[a]=b;} wvtag('id', 'j4zZ1Se4EO1HPk0xCvtD7Q'); wvtag('widget-style', { className: 'wv-circle-small', backgroundColor: '#FF0101' }); “Apple has a weird way of bragging about its wearables business. Instead of giving investors any type of straightforward data metric like unit sales or revenue (or both), the company instead notes when it reaches various milestones relative to the Fortune 500,” Evan Niu writes for The Motley Fool. “It’s a roundabout way to illustrate growth in the wearables segment, which primarily consists of Apple Watch and AirPods.”

“The most recent reference was just last month, when Apple said its wearables business was ‘approaching’ the size of a Fortune 200 company. Fortune has not released its 2019 list, but No. 200 on the 2018 Fortune 500 was Aramark, with $14.6 billion in sales,” Niu writes. “One can only assume that the next milestone that Apple brags about will be when the wearables business hits Fortune 100 territory. For 2018, that was USAA, with $30 billion in revenue.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Yes, Apple could simply say that wearables is close to $14.6 billion in annual sales, but where’s the fun in that? And, how many analysts and investors, lost amid Apple’s mind-boggling numbers, would realize the sheer size as readily as hearing that if Apple wearables were a separate company, it’s be a Fortune 200 company?

Now is the time for Apple to re-think its retail priorities

Wed, 02/13/2019 - 19:44

(function (w, d) { for (var i = 0, j = d.getElementsByTagName("ins"), k = j[i]; i < j.length; k = j[++i]){ if(k.className == "adPushupAds" && k.getAttribute("data-push") != "1") { ((w.adpushup = w.adpushup || {}).control = (w.adpushup.control || [])).push(k); k.setAttribute("data-push", "1");} } })(window, document); window.wvData=window.wvData||{};function wvtag(a,b){wvData[a]=b;} wvtag('id', 'j4zZ1Se4EO1HPk0xCvtD7Q'); wvtag('widget-style', { className: 'wv-circle-small', backgroundColor: '#FF0101' }); “Federico Viticci said it best on the Connected podcast last week: The departure of Angela Ahrendts as Apple’s retail chief is a Rorschach test,” Jason Snell writes for Macworld. “One’s reaction to the news will reveal a lot about one’s feelings about the current state of Apple’s retail stores.”

“Perhaps the biggest source of Apple Store frustration in recent years wasn’t based on any Apple Retail initiative. It was the decision to address a public-relations nightmare involving failing batteries that impacted iPhone speeds by offering a yearlong, discounted battery-replacement program,” Snell writes. “That bit of damage control flooded Apple Stores with traffic and repair jobs it was not prepared to handle. Service suffered as a result.”

“My hope for the future of the Apple Store is that it goes back to basics, focusing not just on product sales but on service,” Snell writes. “Back in the day, the Genius Bar made Apple’s retail efforts stand out—but today I hear far more complaints than compliments about post-sale support in Apple Stores. Some of that is understandably due to Apple’s enormous growth, of course, but Apple Retail has to figure out a way to cope with that growth.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Pave over the stupid “Genius Grove” and rebuild the Genius Bar, longer and better-staffed than ever! (And install adequate sound baffling while you’re at it, so we can communicate in the stores again amidst the overcrowded din.)

SEE ALSO:
Ron Johnson: Apple Retail Stores ‘are a victim of their own success’ – February 12, 2019
Apple’s new retail head needs to fix the biggest problem with Apple Retail Stores – February 8, 2019
What’s next for Apple’s Retail Store empire? – February 8, 2019
New Apple retail chief Deirdre O’Brien receives stock grant worth up to $8.2 million – February 8, 2019
Angela Ahrendts’ Apple departure points to wider mystery – February 6, 2019
Examining Angela Ahrendts’ five-year tenure as head of Apple Retail – February 6, 2019
Apple CEO Cook thanks Angela Ahrendts in company-wide memo to employees – February 6, 2019
Apple names third retail chief in seven years – February 6, 2019
Apple’s Angela Ahrendts to depart in April; Deirdre O’Brien named senior vice president of Retail + People – February 5, 2019
Apple’s Angela Ahrendts has a plan for next-gen retail – January 29, 2019
Why Angela Ahrendts left Burberry for Apple – June 20, 2018
Ralph Lauren to add Apple’s Angela Ahrendts to Board of Directors – May 9, 2018
Angela Ahrendts is again Apple’s best-paid employee – December 29, 2017
Apple now requires CEO Tim Cook to fly only on private jets – December 28, 2017
Apple CEO Tim Cook paid close to $102 million for fiscal 2017 – December 28, 2017
Forbes’ World’s 100 Most Powerful Women: Angela Ahrendts #13, Laurene Powell Jobs #14 – November 2, 2017
Deirdre O’Brien named Apple’s vice president of People – July 21, 2017
Tim Cook took home $10.3 million, Angela Ahrendts earned $25.7 million in 2015 – January 6, 2016
Apple’s Angela Ahrendts emerges as highest-paid U.S. woman with $83 million – May 5, 2015
Apple’s retail chief Angela Ahrendts paid $73.4 million in cash and stock last year; BoD member Drexler steps down – January 22, 2015
Apple’s new retail chief Ahrendts granted $68 million in restricted stock – May 6, 2014

The MacObserver