Tag Archives: Apple

Microsoft Sends Rep Out to Personally Dis the iPhone, Android

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It’s the classic source of angst for a marketer: If only people could actually see how good this product is, then they’d understand.

For Microsoft, it must be especially frustrating. The company feels there are features to Windows Phone 8 that are so good that any reasonable person would swap their iPhone or Android if they just saw Microsoft’s phone up close and personal.

That’s the apparent impetus behind a new round of videos featuring Ben “The PC Guy” Rudolph. The videos show Rudolph meeting strangers and then talking up superior features of the Win 8 Phone. In the video above, he interrupts a couple’s dinner to show them how much better the Nokia Lumia 920 is versus the iPhone. In the video below, he challenges a woman to a text-off with her HTC phone and wins handily. After each instance, he gives the participants the Lumia 920.

Microsoft is reaching into its old playbook for this variation of the Pepsi Challenge. In February, the company dispatched Rudolph for the same mission with the Windows Phone. That program, “Smoked By Windows Phone,” hit a snag when a participant in a challenge claimed it was rigged. (Rudolph later apologized.)

Before that, in 2009, Microsoft ran an ad campaign called “Laptop Hunters” that featured putative real consumers saving money by buying Windows-based PCs rather than Apple’s comparable but pricier models. Microsoft also promoted its Zune MP3 player by taking potshots at the iPod that year.

It’s unclear whether the tactic will work this time around. However, if Microsoft was somehow able to clone Rudolph and have him run the same comparison with the tens of millions of people who own iPhones and Android devices, it might just do the trick.

BONUS: Nokia Lumia 920: A Big Phone With a Killer Camera [REVIEW]

What to Expect From Apple’s iPhone 5 Event

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Here we go again: About a year ago Mashable ran a story with almost the exact same headline as this one. In October 2011, Apple unveiled its fifth-generation iPhone to the world, except it wasn’t called the iPhone 5. It was the iPhone 4S, an incremental update that had been predicted, although that was after many months of wild speculation.

Sound familiar? We’ve been hearing for months that we’ll see the iPhone 5 this fall. Except this time it’s the real deal — when Apple sent out invitations for its Sept. 12 event, the shadow of the “12” was clearly made to look like the number five, with the accompanying caption “it’s almost here.” As my colleague Chris Taylor observed, that may not be letting the cat out of the bag, but it’s kind of making the bag transparent.

By all reports, when we finally see the real iPhone 5 (technically Apple’s sixth iPhone), it’s going to be the biggest redesign of the product since Steve Jobs unveiled the first model way back in January 2007. It’s also going to be the most lucrative for the company, if past history is any indication — every new iPhone has outsold the previous by a wide margin.

THE LATEST: iPhone 5 Unveiled | iPhone 5 vs. Competitors | More of iOS 6 | Thinner iPod Nano | iPod Touch With Siri | New iTunes | New iPhone Dock Connector | New Earbuds, EarPods

But what features is iPhone 5 expected to have, and what else will be on deck for the event? Only Apple knows for sure, but based on online chatter, which has converged over the past few weeks, we can make some educated guesses. Here’s what’s (likely) on tap for Apple’s big iPhone show:

The Skinny on iPhone 5

The star of this event is obviously the iPhone 5, which reportedly brings a new design to the iPhone to accommodate a different-size screen. Reports and leaked images point to the new model sporting a 4-inch screen with an aspect ratio that will make the display longer. That would allow for five rows of apps (plus the “permanent” row on the bottom). The supplier is rumored to be Sharp.

Besides the large screen, the biggest new feature on the iPhone 5 will be LTE connectivity. There’s simply no way Apple won’t include this feature, and it’s been all but confirmed through leaked images of the phone’s motherboard and other reports. Add to that the simple fact that, thanks to progress, the design compromises necessary for LTE that Tim Cook used to be worried about have been largely eliminated.

So the iPhone 5 will have LTE, but what networks will it run on? Since there are versions of the iPad that run on Verizon and AT&T’s LTE networks, you can bet solidly on those being included, but Sprint looks just slightly less sure. If it’s so equipped, it will be Apple’s first LTE Sprint product. That said, Sprint just launched nationwide LTE on Monday, so the network is ready and waiting.

There’s been a lot of buzz around Apple shrinking the dock connector on future iOS devices, and it looks like the iPhone 5 will be the first one with a smaller, 19-pin jack. The current 30-pin dock connector is a holdover from the iPhone’s predecessor, the iPod (although the first iPods were FireWire-only). It’s also fairly large as connectors go — certainly compared with the micro USB ports on many of today’s phones — and its imminent replacement is likely a move to ensure Apple can make the iPhone even thinner than it is already.

One feature you can probably not expect in the iPhone 5 is near-field communication (NFC), which can enable mobile payments and effortless “touch” pairing with devices like Bluetooth earpieces (as long as they have NFC, too). While many Android phones now include it, Apple is said to be skipping the feature in iPhone 5. If that’s true, it’s probably because it’s still a relatively unknown (and unused) feature for many users, and Apple’s waiting to put its own mobile-payment strategy in place before including NFC.

Some rumors say Apple will make another dramatic improvement to a long-standing holdover from the iPod days — the widely derided earbuds that come with every iPhone. Apple could replace them with a new vented in-ear design, but there’s not much to go on here other than a patent Apple filed in April this year.

Finally, there’s the on-sale date, which we can say with almost complete certainty will be Sept. 21. When Apple unveils something on a Wednesday, the most common release date is the following Friday (almost every iPhone has launched on a Friday). Since all rumors indicate the iPhone 5 is now in production and about to ship, Sept. 21 must be the day.

Supporting Characters

New iPods: Apple’s September events have traditionally been about the iPod line, and there hasn’t been a significant upgrade to the lines since 2010. The iPod Touch typically mirrors design changes in the iPhone, so there’s a strong possibility of a new model with a larger screen and even thinner design. New iPod Nanos and Shuffles sporting the new dock connector are also possibilities.

iOS 6: Apple already unveiled iOS 6 back at its spring event, but now it’s ready for prime time. Apple will no doubt announce its general availability, which could be as early as today. There will also be some more detail on the features, Siri’s new abilities, and maybe even a small update about OS X Mountain Lion — we’re still waiting for that Facebook integration, after all.

Sprint iPad: Sprint didn’t get an invitation to Apple’s iPad unveiling in the spring, but that was before it had a full-fledged LTE network. Apple could finally let Sprint into the iPad club with a 4G LTE model today, though even if that’s in the works, the two companies might be saving it for another Apple event later in the fall.

One More Thing… Doubtful

That event being the unveiling of the iPad Mini, a smaller-screen version of the iPad. There have been a lot of rumors and alleged leaks about this product, so it’s extremely likely it exists, although most signs say the li’l iPad will headline its own show sometime in October. And the chance of a new Apple TV (either box or actual set) being unveiled tomorrow looks very small.

Still, you never know. Tim Cook could unveil one of those spider-like iPhone 5 wrist creatures. Or he could just walk out, shout “Syke!” and gleefully tell the world there will be no new iPhones this year before maniacally laughing as he exits the stage.

But probably not. As much as Cook promised to “double down” on secrecy last spring, Apple is the most scrutinized company in tech — if not the world — and that’s why we already know a good amount of what the iPhone 5 will be. We don’t know everything, though, and Apple will surely surprise us with a new treat, even if it’s minor.

What do you think it will be? Shout out your predictions in the comments.

BONUS: All the iPhone 5 Rumors That Might Be True

19 Kids Imagine What the iPhone 6 Might Look Like

Jony Ive, your stark Apple aesthetic could use a kid’s imagination.

Minimalism, curvy and sleek? Borrrring. We asked 19 talented kids — and future Apple designers — to show us what they think the iPhone 6 will look like. A few even offered insights on features we should expect from the revamped gadget.

So when are we getting our Cat iPhone, Apple?

UPDATE, Sept. 9, 3 p.m. ET: Sadly, there are three new iPhones, none shaped like cats or monsters.

Get Up to $400 For Your iPhone 4S

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Interested in trading in your iPhone 4S for an iPhone 5? Most of the popular smartphone-buyback services are offering good prices for Apple’s previous generation smartphone.

This can be a great way to recoup the cost of a new phone — especially if you aren’t eligible for an upgrade or are switching to another carrier.

The iPhone 5 announcement means that tons of older iPhone devices are about to hit the secondary market. As we’ve seen in the past, that flood of devices can lower the buyback amount companies are willing to pay for your device. If you’re interested in selling your device to a buyback service, lock in now, rather than later.

THE LATEST: iPhone 5 Unveiled | iPhone 5 vs. Competitors | More of iOS 6 | Thinner iPod Nano | iPod Touch With Siri | New iTunes | New iPhone Dock Connector | New Earbuds, EarPods

We looked at what the most popular buyback services are paying for the iPhone 4S. As of 8:30 p.m. ET, this is what we found:

iPhone 4S 64GB, AT&T or Unlocked

The 64GB iPhone 4S is the most expensive model, and that’s what we used to base our pricing on in this test.

The best offer we saw for the 64GB iPhone 4S is courtesy of eBay’s Instant Sale.

Instant Sale will pay $400 for a working, fully functional 64GB iPhone 4S. The device needs to be fully functional, have no physical damage and include the charger.

The popular trade-in service Gazelle will pay $350 for a 64GB iPhone 4S on AT&T. Earlier today, Gazelle was offering $400 for the same unit, which means that trade-in volume is already impacting buyback offers.

Like Gazelle, NextWorth is offering $350 for a 64GB iPhone 4Sat&t/). The device needs to be working and cannot have a cracked display.

Amazon’s Trade-In program will pay up to $391 on an Amazon gift card for a 64GB iPhone 4S. Amazon will actually pay $460 on a gift card for a “like new” iPhone 4S, but Amazon’s requirements for what constitutes “like new” is stricter than most other companies. It needs the original packaging and should be presentable as a gift.

At Apple’s Reuse and Recycle website, powered by PowerON, the company will offer a $345 gift card for a 64GB iPhone 4S.

Note: With the exception of Amazon and eBay Instant Sale, Sprint and Verizon iPhone 4S models go for significantly less than their AT&T counterparts.

Other Models

The buyback price for other models will depend on carrier and location. eBay Instant Sale, at the time of this writing, is offering the highest cash buyback amounts for most phone models.

Amazon.com is offering a better buyback price for some models; however, users need to keep in mind that they will be paid with an Amazon gift card, not cash.

Gazelle, NextWorth and Apple all vary depending on when you lock in your deal and what model you are trading in.

A number of services are also offering good rates for iPhone 4 trade-ins.

Are you going to sell off your old iPhone? Let us know in the comments!

Image courtesy of iStockphoto, hocus-focus

Read more: http://mashable.com/2012/09/13/iphone-4s-trade-in/

How to Do a Clean Install of OS X Mountain Lion

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Update:This guide was written for OS X Mountain Lion in 2012, for a current guide to doing a clean install of OS X Mavericks, please view this updated post.

Now that OS X Mountain Lion is out, many users are interested in updating their systems with the latest and greatest big cat.

As with OS X Lion, the standard way to install Mountain Lion is via the Mac App Store upgrade.

For most users, this is fine. Some users, however, view a new OS release as an opportunity to perform a clean install. It’s possible to do a clean install of Mountain Lion, but the process takes a little bit of work.

Fortunately, we’ve put together a helpful guide to get you going with a DVD or bootable USB version of the Mountain Lion installer. Does this guide looks familiar? That’s because it’s nearly identical to the clean install guide for Lion we wrote last year.

The process is virtually the same — however, the DMG file needs to be mounted before restoring to a USB stick in Disk Utility.

Top 10 Tech This Week

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How Apple’s Alleged Tax Avoidance Changed Its Image

Apple Taxes Comic, Jerry King

The U.S. Senate’s Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations claims that Apple didn’t pay taxes on at least $74 billion in overseas income by setting up subsidiaries in other countries.

In this Sunday comic, we see how this scandal has changed the tech giant’s image — literally. Taxes really do take a bite out of earnings.

Homepage image courtesy of Flickr, Dennis Goedegebuure. Comic written by Larry Lambert; illustrated by Jerry King.

Cat Plays Ninja Fruit On iPad

It seems pets playing touch screen video games is all the rage these days. First, there was a  lizard, and then a frog, who both went viral playing the iPad game, Ant Crusher (naturally, as they eat bugs). Now, this Russian video from November of a kitty playing Ninja Fruit is gaining in popularity. The video is shared on DailyPicksAndFlicks

 

Read more: http://www.viralviralvideos.com/2011/12/28/cat-plays-ninja-fruit-on-ipad/

Apple’s Next Operating System: Lynx

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With only one version of Mac OS X left to go, and a dwindling number of big cats to name it after, Apple has apparently decided which breed to honor. OS 10.9 will be called Lynx, according to one unconfirmed report.

Previous versions of the OS, first released in 2001, were named Cheetah, Puma, Jaguar, Panther, Tiger, Leopard, Snow Leopard and Lion. The current version, OS X 10.8, is known as Mountain Lion. Apple has released a new upgrade every year.

Apple has already trademarked two unused cat names, Lynx and Cougar. Cougar, however, is simply another name for a Mountain Lion. That leaves Lynx as the most likely candidate.

The website Applescoop.com cites a source within Apple, who saw “some internal papers that seem to be finalizing the name of the operating system.”

If Apple holds to its traditional unveiling schedule, the Lynx operating system will be shown in public for the first time at its developers’ conference, WWDC, in San Francisco in June 2013. Chances are, select members of the media will be briefed on the system a few months prior.

Little is known about what the 10.9 upgrade may offer, except perhaps a couple of features from iOS 6: Siri and Maps.

Lynx image courtesy of Wikipedia

Read more: http://mashable.com/2012/11/19/apple-next-operating-system-lynx/