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DuckDuckGo to Use Apple Maps for Private Search

The MacObserver - Tue, 01/15/2019 - 19:42

Private search provider DuckDuckGo announced it will use Apple Maps to power location-based searches.

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Apple loses bid to undo $440 million judgment in VirnetX patent case

Mac Daily News - Tue, 01/15/2019 - 19:30

“A U.S. appeals court on Tuesday upheld a judgment worth $440 million that was won by intellectual property licensing firm VirnetX Inc against Apple Inc in a patent infringement case,” Jan Wolfe reports for Reuters. “”

“The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit denied Apple’s appeal of a 2016 jury verdict originally valued at $302 million that grew to $440 million with interest, enhanced damages, and other costs,” Wolfe reports. “The same patent claims have been ruled invalid by an administrative court, but VirnetX is in the process of appealing those determinations.”

Wolfe reports, “Zephyr Cove, Nevada-based VirnetX, which was founded by employees at government contractor Science Applications International Corporation, holds patents related to secure networks, known as virtual private networks, and secure communications links.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: The never-ending legal rollercoaster takes another turn!

Federal jury rules Apple must pay $502.6 million to VirnetX – April 10, 2018
Apple, slapped with a $440 million judgement, to appeal VirnetX patent case – October 16, 2017
Apple loses patent retrial to VirnetX, owes $302.4 million – October 1, 2016
Judge voids VirnetX’s $625.6 million Apple verdict; VirnetX shares plunge – August 1, 2016
Patent troll VirnetX wants judge to block Apple’s FaceTime, iMessage services – May 26, 2016
Apple hit with $626 million damages in VirnetX patent case – February 3, 2016
VirnetX’s $368 million jury award against Apple tossed by appeals court – September 16, 2014
Apple to make changes to VPN behavior in iOS 6.1 as result of VirnetX judgement – April 5, 2013
Judge upholds $368 million patent suit verdict for VirnetX against Apple – February 27, 2013
Jury slaps Apple with $368.2 million fine over VirnetX patents – November 7, 2012
VirnetX awarded new security patent files new complaint against Apple – November 1, 2011

8 Corporate Earnings That Are Vulnerable To China's Downturn

Yahoo Finance, AAPL - Tue, 01/15/2019 - 19:21
The steep economic slowdown in China has become cause for major concern among stock investors who own U.S. companies that derive significant revenue from that market. As the corporate earnings reporting season gets underway, this may weigh heavily on many companies' financial results -- just as it did on Apple Inc. (AAPL), when it issued gloomy forecasts based on lowered expectations in China. “My guess is, what Apple did will be the blueprint for many other companies,” says Joe LaVorgna, chief economist for the Americas at French-based investment banking and asset management firm Natixis, per a story in The Wall Street Journal.

Don't get too excited by earnings beats – the bar is set very low

Yahoo Finance, AAPL - Tue, 01/15/2019 - 19:20
The consensus estimate for fourth quarter S&P 500 growth has fallen to 11.9 percent from 17.8 percent in September. Preliminary earnings results are already showing earnings beats, RBC Capital Markets strategist Lori Calvasina said. The season of fourth-quarter earnings reports has begun and already companies are beating expectations.

Words Story - ZHOU JIAPING

Top 10 Free Apps - Tue, 01/15/2019 - 19:00
This is a word game about a man escape from prison. A man is framed and imprisoned, but he never gives up and plans to self-salvation. Persevere, day after day, year after year. Hope can set him free. Finally, he can take the breath of freedom. Features: • Simple, easy rules, type the correct word to win a game! • ALL LEVELS are FREE for all users! • NEW word gameplay, good news for word gamer! • No time limit, adjust your pace at any level • Play offline! No wifi required • FREE hints, get tips without fees • 1000 levels without repeat, be a word master in our training! • Kill time-no pressure no push! • Suitable for both kids and adults to train logic skills. DOWNLOAD NOW! We are working on improving the game, so if you have any question, let us know your thought and tips via greatpuzzlegames@gmail.com. Words Story ZHOU JIAPING Get https://is3-ssl.mzstatic.com/image/thumb/Purple114/v4/ee/7f/47/ee7f4730-db0f-fd25-6ed4-7996c2985ad8/AppIcon-0-1x_U007emarketing-0-85-220-0-7.png/53x53bb-85.png https://is2-ssl.mzstatic.com/image/thumb/Purple114/v4/ee/7f/47/ee7f4730-db0f-fd25-6ed4-7996c2985ad8/AppIcon-0-1x_U007emarketing-0-85-220-0-7.png/75x75bb-85.png https://is3-ssl.mzstatic.com/image/thumb/Purple114/v4/ee/7f/47/ee7f4730-db0f-fd25-6ed4-7996c2985ad8/AppIcon-0-1x_U007emarketing-0-85-220-0-7.png/100x100bb-85.png © Worzzle Games 2018-10-15T03:09:25-07:00

Buy Netflix (NFLX) Stock Before Q4 Earnings, After It Raised Streaming Prices?

Yahoo Finance, AAPL - Tue, 01/15/2019 - 19:00
Netflix (NFLX) saw its stock price climb 6% Tuesday after the streaming TV powerhouse raised its prices on all of its streaming plans for the first time in over a year just a few days before it reports its Q4 financial results.

Netflix raises its prices again for U.S. subscribers; rates jump 13 to 18 percent

Mac Daily News - Tue, 01/15/2019 - 18:59

“Netflix Inc is raising monthly fees for its U.S. subscribers by between 13 percent and 18 percent, the video streaming pioneer’s first price increase since 2017 as it spends heavily on original content and international expansion,” Reuters reports. “Prices for its popular standard plan, which allows streaming on two devices at the same time, will be increased to $12.99 per month from $10.99, the company said in a statement.”

“The company’s top-tier plan, which allows streaming on four screens in high definition, will be raised to $15.99 from $13.99 per month, while fee for its basic plan will rise to $8.99 from $7.99,” Reuters reports. “In comparison, Time Warner Inc’s HBO Now streaming service charges $14.99 per month, while Hulu’s no-advertisements plan is priced at $11.99 per month.”

“Netflix is scheduled to report its fourth-quarter results after market close on Thursday,” Reuters reports. “‘With Netflix frequently tapping the debt markets on several recent occasions, the price hike could help ease concerns with a growing deficit on free cash flow to fund a likely continued escalation in Netflix’s content spending, which likely topped $13 billion in 2018,’ CFRA analyst Tuna Amobi said.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: The total for cord-cutters will be approaching cable/satellite rates sooner than later. Even price increase from established players leaves that much less in users’ budgets for Apple once they finally get around to launching their streaming service.

Apple Must Pay VirnetX $440 Million for Patent Infringement, Appeals Court Rules

MacRumors - Tue, 01/15/2019 - 18:50
Apple must pay VirnetX $440 million after an appeals court upheld an earlier judgement in favor of the patent holding company, reports Reuters.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit today denied Apple's appeal of a 2016 verdict that awarded VirnetX $302 million, which increased to $439.7 million when taking into account damages and interest calculated during retrials.

VirnetX first sued Apple in 2010, accusing FaceTime of infringing on patents held by VirnetX. The two companies have been fighting in court since then, and Apple in 2017 said it would appeal the final $440 million judgement.

In a separate case that is also still unsettled, VirnetX was awarded an additional $502.6 million from Apple after a court found that Apple's FaceTime, iMessage, and VPN on Demand features infringe on four VirnetX patents related to communications security.

Apple in total owes VirnetX $942 million, but is likely to continue to fight both rulings, as the patents in question have been ruled invalid by a separate court. Apple said it is disappointed with the ruling and will once again appeal.

Tags: FaceTime, patent trials, VirnetX, Patent lawsuits
This article, "Apple Must Pay VirnetX $440 Million for Patent Infringement, Appeals Court Rules" first appeared on MacRumors.com

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CES 2019: What Google, Amazon, & Other Tech Giants Showed Off

Yahoo Finance, AAPL - Tue, 01/15/2019 - 18:35
Ryan McQueeney recaps CES 2019 and highlights the hardware that industry bellwethers such as Google, Amazon, Intel, Nvidia, & Samsung flaunted at the world's largest consumer electronics show.

DuckDuckGo Integrates Apple Maps for Map and Address Searches

MacRumors - Tue, 01/15/2019 - 18:12
Privacy-focused search engine DuckDuckGo today announced that it is using Apple's MapKit JS framework to power the map and address-related searches that its users conduct on both mobile and desktop.

MapKit JS allows DuckDuckGo to provide users with improved address searches, new visual features, enhanced satellite imagery, and continually updated maps without sacrificing privacy.

DuckDuckGo says that Apple Maps will be available embedded within private search results for relevant queries and from the Maps tab on any of the search result pages.

To bring up a map option, users can search for an address, a geographical place, a local business, a type of business, or places nearby.

DuckDuckGo does not collect or share any personal information from DuckDuckGo users, a policy that extends to the Apple Maps integration. Identifiable info like IP address is not provided to Apple, and for searches where approximate location is gathered by the browser, it is discarded immediately after it's used.

Tags: Apple Maps, DuckDuckGo
This article, "DuckDuckGo Integrates Apple Maps for Map and Address Searches" first appeared on MacRumors.com

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3 Low-Risk Tech Stocks for a Downturn

Yahoo Finance, AAPL - Tue, 01/15/2019 - 18:12
The market is making some investors nervous, but you don’t have to give up tech altogether to make your portfolio safer.

The voice assistant war: What if nobody wins?

Mac Daily News - Tue, 01/15/2019 - 18:03

“One of the clearest developments that came out of 2018, and prominently on display last week in Las Vegas at CES 2019, was the rise of the embedded voice assistant. Amazon’s Alexa and Google’s Assistant were omnipresent at the show,” Bob O’Donnell writes for Tech.pinion. “Combine that with recent numbers from Amazon and Google about compatible device shipments, and it’s clear that voice assistants have gone mainstream.”

“Amazon is generally seen as winning the war so far, but Google has been coming on strong, plus Apple, Microsoft, and Samsung are too big to ignore, especially given how young this market still is,” O’Donnell writes. “The dynamics of the voice assistant are now becoming much more complex. At this year’s CES, for example, we started to see even more devices that are supporting multiple voice assistant platforms… An even more confounding problem that consumers are likely to start facing this year is owning multiple products with different smart assistant platforms.”

“While some people may be perfectly comfortable working across multiple voice assistants, and actually remembering which ones are enabled on which devices, most people are likely to get quickly confused in such a scenario,” O’Donnell writes. “Most of the major platforms are working to address the multiple device response issue as we speak, but it remains to be seen how effective it will be as more and more voice assistant-enabled devices start to make their way into people’s homes.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Our homes, vehicles, and offices could soon become, if they’re not already, a veritable cacophony of voice assistants trying to outshout each other trying to deliver today’s weather, news, sports scores, etc.!

Huawei CEO Said Firm Not a Spy for China

The MacObserver - Tue, 01/15/2019 - 17:51

Huawei CEO Ren Zhengfei insisted his company does not spy on behalf of China. In a rare public appearance, reported by the Wall Street Journal, Mr. Ren said: “I personally would never harm the interest of my customers and me and my company would not answer to such requests.” It comes as his daughter, the company’s CFO Meng Wanzhou, is fighting extradition to the U.S. after being arrested in Canada.

“No law requires any company in China to install mandatory back doors,” Ren Zhengfei said Tuesday. “I personally would never harm the interest of my customers and me and my company would not answer to such requests.” Mr. Ren’s public comments at Huawei’s campus are his first in years and come as the telecom giant faces challenges on multiple fronts.


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Deals: Save on Pad & Quill's iPhone Cases, New 4K Films for $10 on iTunes, and More

MacRumors - Tue, 01/15/2019 - 17:45
This week is seeing notable discounts hit Pad & Quill's leather iPhone cases, Apple Watch Series 3 at Best Buy, brand-new 4K films on iTunes, and much more.

At Pad & Quill this month, you can save some money on the company's leather iPhone cases. The sale takes as much as $25 off accessories like the Heritage Bella Fino Leather iPhone XS Case, and you can also use Pad & Quill's ongoing PQ16 code to take an additional $10 off your order. Check out all of the cases on sale in the list below (note that these prices are before the $10 off code), and head to Pad & Quill to place your order before the sale ends at the end of January.

Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with these vendors. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep the site running.
On iTunes, a new crop of 4K films debuted on sale today for just $9.99, including recent releases like A Simple Favor, Bad Times at the El Royale, and Book Club. Below we've made a full list of all the 4K films on sale, and be sure to check out iTunes Movies on tvOS, macOS, or iOS to download the movies before the discounts end next week.

$9.99 4K Movies

Best Buy has also kicked off a new sale on Apple Watch, offering the Apple Watch Series 3 for as low as $229.00 in 38mm Aluminum and $259.00 in 42mm Aluminum. Cellular and other band options are also available, starting at $279.00. The retailer also has a sale on Philips Hue lights happening this week, where you can save as much as 20 percent on the HomeKit-compatible accessories. This marks the price of the Philips Hue White Ambiance A19 LED Starter Kit down to $109.99, from $149.99.

Below we've listed a few other quick-mention discounts that you can nab today on Amazon:
Head to our full Deals Roundup to catch up with more information on this week's best sales.

Related Roundup: Apple Deals
This article, "Deals: Save on Pad & Quill's iPhone Cases, New 4K Films for $10 on iTunes, and More" first appeared on MacRumors.com

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Facebook to Invest $300 Million in Local News Initiatives

The MacObserver - Tue, 01/15/2019 - 17:40

Facebook announced that it will invest $300 million in local news organizations and initiatives over the next three years. It will put $20 of million of this towards its Facebook Accelerator program that helps publishers develop membership and subscription models. It will also invest $6 million for the UK based Community News Project, $5 million to the Pulitzer Center for its “Bringing Stories Home”  initiative, and $2 million for the Report in America initiative that aims to place journalists in local newsrooms. Techcrunch looked at what the money means both for Facebook and the media industry.

As for why Facebook is focusing on local news specifically, Vice President of Global News Partnerships Campbell Brown said in a blog post that after examining “what kind of news people want to see on Facebook” and talking to industry partners, “We heard one consistent answer: people want more local news, and local newsrooms are looking for more support.”


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Apple solves decades-old problem as TD Ameritrade taps Apple Pay for instant fund transfers to accounts

Mac Daily News - Tue, 01/15/2019 - 17:29

“Brokerage firm TD Ameritrade Holding Corp is tapping Apple Inc to help solve a problem that has lingered for decades: how to get money into a brokerage account and make it available to trade with on the same day,” Stephen Nellis reports for Reuters. “The Omaha, Nebraska-based financial firm said on Tuesday it was allowing customers to fund their accounts with a debit card in their Apple Pay digital wallets. Using the wallet and a system called Apple Business Chat, TD Ameritrade customers with Apple devices can transfer up to $10,000 a day to their accounts and have access to it immediately, a feature the brokerage says is a first in its industry.”

“Previously, customers had to either use a wire transfer, which can be complex, or wait for several days before being able to access transferred funds. Sunayna Tuteja, head of strategic partnerships and emerging technologies at TD Ameritrade, said the wait was one of the top-five drivers of customer service calls,” Nellis reports. “‘When a customer wants to put money into a TD Ameritrade account, we gave them the same choices they had in the 1970s and 1980s,’ she said. ‘We knew it was a persistent client irritant.'”

Nellis reports, “Tuteja said TD Ameritrade chose Apple Pay to start with because of its ease of use, security and the fact that about three-quarters of the brokerage’s clients use the iOS operating system.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: This makes ACH look positively prehistoric. Now, we just need more brokers to deploy Apple Pay capability, too!

For more information, interested businesses should watch Apple’s “Getting Ready for Business Chat” (WWDC 2018) here.

Credit Suisse to use Apple Business Chat for rich Asian clients – October 2, 2018
DISH adds Apple Business Chat, allowing customers to connect with Messages on iPhone and iPad – July 20, 2018
Apple’s new Business Chat in iOS 11.3 is a huge deal – January 24, 2018
With Apple’s Business Chat, users can schedule appointments and process payments in iMessage – June 12, 2017

Trend Mirco and Tesla Partner for Automative Security Competition

The MacObserver - Tue, 01/15/2019 - 17:21

Trend Micro announced it has joined with Tesla for a new category at Pwn2Own Vancouver, making a Tesla Model 3 available to the winner.

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Apple's Chipmaking Chief Johny Srouji Reportedly on Intel's List of Potential CEOs

MacRumors - Tue, 01/15/2019 - 17:07
Intel has been searching for a new CEO since Brian Krzanich resigned nearly seven months ago, and Axios now reports that the chipmaker's list of candidates includes Johny Srouji, Senior Vice President of Hardware Technologies at Apple.

Srouji joined Apple in 2008 to lead development of the A4 chip, the first Apple-designed system-on-a-chip in the iPhone 4, and now oversees custom silicon and hardware technologies including batteries, application processors, storage controllers, sensors silicon, and other chipsets across Apple's entire product line.

It's unclear if Srouji is interested in leading Intel, where he worked between 1990 and 2005 in both his native Israel and the United States, according to his LinkedIn profile. Srouji also worked at IBM between 2005 and 2008.

Apple's custom A-series chips lead the mobile industry in terms of performance, so losing Srouji would certainly be a major blow for the iPhone maker, although the company obviously has a larger team of engineers working on the silicon. Back in 2017, Srouji said his team was already working on chips for 2020.

Apple is rumored to use an Intel wireless chip in its first 5G-capable iPhone in 2020.

Tags: Intel, Johny Srouji
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Apple’s next big move? Buying Nintendo

Mac Daily News - Tue, 01/15/2019 - 17:00

“Apple needs its next big thing — fast. With its shares down nearly a third in the past three months and the financial guidance bombshell earlier this year, the burning question turns to what Apple can do to spark a turnaround,” Tae Kim writes for Barron’s. “Apple has hinted that it will act boldly to revive its fortunes.”

“CEO Tim Cook reminded investors in a recent letter that Apple’s goal is to be ‘net-cash neutral’ over time, meaning that Apple needs a use for its $130 billion in net cash,” Kim writes. “So far, that has meant buybacks and dividends. But in a recent CNBC interview, Cook made it clear that the company continues to ponder large acquisitions, as well: ‘We’ve elected so far not to do those because we haven’t found one that we said, ‘Wow, that’s a nice intersection of Apple.’ But I’d never rule it out.'”

“The best fit for Apple may be Nintendo, its stylistic twin in Asia. Like Apple, Nintendo likes to make money. Both companies have similar attributes: mountains of cash, gushing profits, beloved brands, loyal customers, and sticky ecosystems of software and services,” Kim writes. “Nintendo has struggled to gain traction beyond its home consoles. Apple has a few things to offer there: Think iPhone, Apple TV, iPad, and maybe even the Mac… Apple could help Nintendo aggressively scale its Nintendo Switch Online paid subscription business, which enables robust multiplayer online services and access to a classic games library. All told, Apple’s ecosystem powers 1.4 billion active devices.”

“Perhaps the best part of the deal? Apple may be able to acquire the highest quality videogame publisher in the world at a reasonable price,” Kim writes. “Nintendo has a market value of $34 billion, but Nintendo is conservative with its capital and has approximately $9.6 billion in net cash. That gives the company an enterprise value of about $24 billion. If Apple offered a 50% premium to Nintendo’s market value—a deal that Nintendo would have to consider—the price tag would come to roughly $40 billion.”

Read more in the full article here.

“Nintendo Co jumped 4.6 percent, which traders said reflected reaction to a Barron’s article suggesting that Apple Inc buy the Japanese game console maker to spark a turnaround,” Ayai Tomisawa reports for Reuters. “‘Investors are taking heart from the article. But the rally will likely be short-lived’ as the potential consequences of any merger or purchase are not clear, said Hikaru Sato, a senior technical analyst at Daiwa Securities.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Certainly, there’s a lot of crossover and synergy there. Whether Apple would ever make the leap from their largest-ever acquisition ($3 billion for Beats) up into the $40 mega acquisition realm is the question.

Nintendo battles Apple for parts as demand for Switch increases – May 30, 2017
Nintendo Switch is the first console in years that’s truly exciting – March 4, 2017
Nintendo Switch vs iPad Mini 4: Which is the better games machine? – March 3, 2017

United Airlines' biggest customer? Apple, spending $150 million a year on tickets

Yahoo Finance, AAPL - Tue, 01/15/2019 - 16:49
Apple reportedly spends $150 million on United Airlines airplane tickets annually, making it the airline's biggest customer.

The MacObserver