The talk of the town may be all about the next iPhones and Apple TV, but a new report came in today claiming that we’ll get an impressive new iMac in November. Elsewhere, we’ll get to see just how good Danny Boyle’s upcoming Steve Jobs biopic is this weekend, and an Apple executive admits that parts of Apple Music still need some work.
Most speculation surrounding Apple’s future product releases is currently focused on the company’s big media event next Wednesday, but sources who spoke with 9to5Mac allegedly know that the Cupertino company also plans to announce a 21.5-inch iMac with a 4K display toward the end of October. If that sounds familiar, it’s because clues regarding the existence of the device were found lurking in the code for OS X El Capitan back in June. The sources claim the unit will go out to stores in November.
As a recap, the discovered code suggests that the device will have a resolution of 4096 x 2304. In addition, it hinted that the new iMac will likely contain a Broadwell processor and the associated Intel Iris Pro Graphics 6200 chipset and AMD Radeon M380 – M395X graphics.
Just a few days ago, it seemed certain that Danny Boyle’s new Steve Jobs biopic would debut at the New York Film Festival on October 3, but today Entertainment Weekly reported that the film will actually have its first public screening at the Telluride Film Festival in Colorado this weekend. That’s a whole month ahead of the previously announced screening, which means that Boyle must be really proud of his work here as this gives critics more than enough time to tear the thing apart ahead of the wide release if it’s bad.
Currently, it’s not known when exactly the festival will show the film; right now, we know only that it’ll happen sometime over Labor Day weekend. Director Danny Boyle will also receive a “Silver Medallion Award” from the festival in honor of his “significant contribution to the world of cinema,” and Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak will even be in town to see how well Seth Rogen depicts him on screen.
Apple is on the verge of bringing Apple Music to Android this fall, according to a new story from The Guardian, but the report is particularly noteworthy for iTunes executive Oliver Schusser’s admission that Apple still has “a bit of homework to be done” with the service. Schusser was specifically speaking about Apple Music Connect, the service’s social network where artists can interact with their fans, but his other statements make it clear that he believes it applies to other aspects of the service as well.
“There’s a lot of work going into making the product better. Our focus is on editorial and playlists, and obviously we have teams all around the world working on that, but we’re also adding features and cleaning up certain things,” Schusser told The Guardian.
Over 11 million people reportedly signed up for the free trial for the service, but it’s not clear at this point how many will stick around once the first free trials end toward the end of this month. Even Jim Dalymple of The Loop, well-known for his insider info regarding the workings of Apple, threw up his hands and announced in a July post that “Apple Music is a nightmare and I’m done with it.” Schusser also took the occasion to point out that iTunes, his own area of the business, is still doing just fine with a download model in the wake of all this streaming music talk:
“If you follow the industry and look at the numbers, the download business has been really, really healthy,” Schusser said. “iTunes is a big part of our business, still, and will continue to be, so we focus just as much time and energy on maintaining that, editorially and working on features.”
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More specific details about the devices we’ll probably see at Apple’s media event next week continue to roll in from alleged insider sources, which at this point means that Apple CEO Tim Cook could just walk on stage and show that the devices exist and his work would be done. Today’s rumors claim that the next Apple TV will have a universal search feature and come with a black remote, and that we’ll finally get to see the “iPad Pro” after months of rumors.
The latest batch of rumors regarding the Apple TV came in this morning from both Buzzfeed and 9to5Mac. In Buzzfeed’s report, insider sources revealed that the device will start at 9 (in line with previous rumors) and support a universal search feature that will let users search for media through third-party services such as Netflix in addition to iTunes. As for 9to5Mac’s sources, they claim that the device will contain somewhere between 8 and 16 GB of storage, and that the long-rumored touchpad remote will be black instead of the current silver.
According to the “sources familiar with Apple’s plans,” the Cupertino company expects that the universal search feature will be a “cornerstone” of the new set-top box. What’s more, the search feature won’t limit users to titles, but will also allow them to search for media based on directors, actors, or a number of other “targeted searches.” Even better, you’ll be able to do all this through Siri.
All this comes on top of all of the other information we “know” about the device, such as how it’ll come with an A8 processor and its own App Store, which is widely expected to contain games in addition to the core streaming services. Additional rumors claim that the device will support lightweight motion controls that resemble those currently found on iOS devices.
Apple’s September 9 event is shaping up to be very busy indeed, as new rumors from 9to5Mac claim that it’ll also feature the new iPad mini 4 and the long-awaited 12.9-inch “iPad Pro.”
But don’t get too excited yet. While the huge iPad is expected to make an appearance on stage a week from now, it allegedly won’t land in customers’ hands until sometime in November. It’s currently thought that Apple might choose this later launch date out of a desire to give developers time to create specialized apps for the device. Indeed, there’s always a chance that Apple could reveal the device at a separate autumn event, as the list of products rumored for next week’s show is growing longer by the day and the company has been known to host two fall shows in the past.
As for the iPad mini 4, in line with previous rumors, it’s expected to match the specs of the existing iPad Air 2 (but in a smaller package). If you want a new iPad Air, you’re apparently stuck with what’s on the market as there’s no indication that Apple plans to release a new version of the device before 2016.
Based on previous rumors, the “iPad Pro” will sport a 12.9-inch screen, a Force Touch-compatible stylus, an A9 processor, 2 GB of RAM, and possibly even USB 3.0 ports for users who want to hook up peripheral devices. There’s also some indication that the device will launch with iOS 9.1 installed rather than 9.0, which sits well with the new rumor of a November launch date.
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Netflix, Amazon, and Hulu have all caught the “original television programming” bug, and now Apple apparently wants in on the action, too. In other news, you can now download videos from Amazon Prime Video to your iPhone or iPad for offline viewing, and the first of Apple’s next-generation retail stores is reportedly coming to a Memphis suburb.
Apple recently bolstered its presence in the music world with the introduction of Apple Music, and according to a new report from Variety, the Cupertino company now wants to get on some of the action that services like Netflix and Amazon are enjoying and start making its own television programming. Apparently, “preliminary conversations” have already started. As with all of Apple’s digital content endeavors, Apple’s Eddy Cue is reportedly heading the project.
It’s currently unknown, however, just how far Apple wants to go with the idea. One source who spoke with the magazine claims that Apple wants to make its own original shows and movies and is prepared to create the necessary production departments. Yet another claims that Apple is merely “flirting” with the idea, although reportedly it did recently make a try to nab Top Gear stars Jeremy Clarkson, James May, and Richard Hammond after their departure from the BBC.
Apple’s current homegrown media offerings are largely limited to the Beats branch of the business, through which Apple hosts the acclaimed Beats 1 radio station and reportedly produces videos for the likes of Drake and Eminem.
Speaking of television content services, Amazon just scored a massive victory over Netflix today with its announcement that Amazon Prime Video users can download movies and television shows on their iPhones and iPads for offline viewing. Best of all, there’s no additional charge for the service if you’re an Amazon Prime member. The company expects to have a wider release for the service down the road, but for now the service is limited to Prime customers in the U.S., the U.K., Germany, and Austria.
The catch is that not all shows are available for offline viewing, although Amazon claims that “thousands” are ready to download. And these aren’t piddly releases, either — current offerings include everything from Downton Abbey to Star Trek: Into Darkness.
“There’s no doubt that the way people watch entertainment is changing — anytime, anywhere viewing is important and we are excited to provide our Prime members with offline viewing capabilities on iOS and Android platforms starting today,” said Amazon digital video chief Michael Paull in the release. “We are proud to be the first and only online subscription streaming service that enables offline viewing — on vacation, in a car, at the beach, on a plane, wherever our Prime members want to watch they can, regardless of internet connection.”
Amazon previously allowed offline viewing through its Kindle Fire tablet, but this marks the first time that the feature has been available outside of the company’s own ecosystem. You can download the relevant app for free here.
Apple is reportedly seeking a building permit to renovate a new storefront at 2031 West St. in Memphis’ Germantown suburb, which isn’t really news in itself. But as the Memphis Daily News reports, Apple representative Rick Millitello claims that the new store will be one of the first next-generation Apple Stores. Rumors about what to expect from Apple’s overhaul of its stores have been circulating ever since The New Yorker‘s profile of Jony Ive mentioned an upcoming “redesign,” and the Germantown plans provide us our first glimpse of what to expect.
Apple’s existing Germantown store. Photo: Daniel McGarry
Some of the changes aren’t too surprising, such as Apple’s plan to replace the building’s existing brick facade with three huge glass panels and to fill the room with natural oak display tables. But hints of what to expect reveal themselves in other details, such as the way the building’s exterior will have matte granite reinforced panels and a changeable display that exhibits artwork, “living plants at times, TV displays,” and other things.
Apple’s existing store in the area is across the street at 7615 W. Farmington Blvd. in the Shops of Saddle Creek North. Once it opens, the new store will be located in the Shops of Saddle Creek South. Millitello also said that multiple overseas locations will also see the redesigned stores this fall.
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