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Apple Daily: iPad Pro Stylus, Steve Jobs Biopic Production, MLK Day

Steve Jobs probably wouldn’t have liked it, but analyst Ming-Chi Kuo believes that Apple plans to release its 12.9-inch iPad Pro with a optional stylus. In other news, production has at last started on Danny Boyle’s Steve Jobs biopic, judging from the film crews outside Jobs’ boyhood home, and Apple paid homage to Martin Luther King, Jr. on its homepage today.

Rumor: Apple May Release iPad Pro with Optional Stylus

Famed analyst Ming-Chi Kuo of KGI Securities is back with another one of his predictions for Apple’s future, and this time he states that the Cupertino company will most likely release an optional stylus when (and of course, if) it releases the long-rumored 12.9-inch iPad Pro. Steve Jobs was famously critical of using a stylus during his 2007 iPhone announcement, but Kuo seems to think it might find a better market with Apple’s supposed ginormous tablet.

Optional is the key word here, as Kuo believes it’ll drive up the cost of the tablet itself too high if it came with all purchases.

“We don’t think all users will need a stylus initially,” Kuo said in his letter to investors, according to MacRumors. “Coupled with its unfavorable cost structure, high selling prices may turn consumers off if the 12.9-inch iPad is always bundled with it. We therefore expect the stylus to be an optional accessory before sufficient user feedback is received.”

Kuo believes the iPad Pro and its associated stylus should appear sometime in the second or third quarter of this year.

Production on Steve Jobs Biopic Starts in Los Altos

After all those months of rumors and cast and director changes, the new Steve Jobs biopic has at last commenced production at Steve Jobs’ boybood home in Los Altos, California. Currently crews are just setting up, according to CNET, but the actual filming should be begin on Friday afternoon.

Specifically, the team is currently in the process of making the garage look like it might have looked back in 1976 when Steve Wozniak and Steve Jobs were putting together the Apple I (although Wozniak says the garage story is a bit of a myth).

The film will star Michael Fassbender in the role of Jobs, while Seth Rogen will play the part of Steve Wozniak and Jeff Daniels will portray early Apple CEO John Sculley. Kate Winslet will also star in an unknown role.

You can check out a full gallery of the production photos at CNET.

Apple Celebrates Martin Luther King, Jr. Day

Today is Martin Luther King, Jr. Day in the United States, and to commemorate the event, Apple has updated its homepage to feature Dr. King with a full-page memorial. The page features a photo of King delivering one of his speeches, and is accompanied by the words: “Today we reflect on the life and vision of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and the work that continues in service of the broader concerns of humanity.”

Earlier today, Apple CEO Tim Cook acknowledged the federal holiday on Twitter, saying “Honoring the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.” with a link to Apple’s homepage. 9to5Mac reports that Apple is using the holiday to encourage its own employees to volunteer, and apparently the Cupertino company is donating “an additional for every voluntary hour worked by employees” as a part of its gift matching program.

Follow this article’s writer, Leif Johnson, on Twitter.


Judge Rules Steve Jobs’ iPod Deposition Video Won’t Be Released to Public

If you were hoping you’d get to see Steve Jobs’ video testimony that was such a key part of the recent iPod antitrust trial, District Court Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers wants you to cast those hopes aside. Members of the media had been insisting on getting access to the tape despite significant opposition from Apple (and the plaintiffs, for that matter), but the judge ruled that Jobs’ testimony will be treated as any other live testimony.

In other words, since live testimonies aren’t recorded and released to the media, then Jobs’ testimony shouldn’t be either. The video itself was taped in 2011, just months before Jobs’ death in October of that year, and it represents one of the Apple co-founder’s last appearances on film. In it, Jobs states his reasons for Apple’s air-tight digital rights management system, claiming that it was to ensure the numerous contracts the company had signed would remain valid. The fact that users couldn’t play music for stores like RealNetworks, Jobs says, was just “collateral damage.”

The video reportedly shows Jobs in an “snarky” mood, and at one point he reportedly (via CNN) asks if RealNetworks still exists. Jobs also proved evasive for most of the interview, saying things like “I don’t remember” and “I don’t recall” 74 times throughout the testimony. Jobs’ physical condition was rapidly deteriorating at the time, but the video reportedly shows his mind was as sharp as ever.

Rogers said that her decision might have been different if Apple hadn’t been so strongly opposed to the release, but there are sound legal grounds for keeping it off the public record as well. Releasing Jobs’ testimony would provide a precedent in which other taped testimonies by high-profile figures could be broadcast beyond the court, thereby possibly dissuading similar individuals in the future from providing their own testimonies if they thought they’d be released to the press.

Transcriptions of the video are, in fact, in the public record, and Judge Rogers found these adequate.

Follow this article’s writer, Leif Johnson, on Twitter.


Morning Report: Apple.com + PayPal, More on Jobs Biopic, Adobe Acquires Fotolia

Steve Jobs silhouette

The seemingly troubled Steve Jobs biopic now being produced at Universal Pictures apparently wasn’t always so complicated, as newly leaked emails from the Sony hack reveal in our Friday Morning Report. We’ve also got details on a new Adobe pickup, and the addition of PayPal to Apple’s Online Store, so get ready for the weekend by clicking ahead, won’t you…?

Sony Hack Highlights Better Days on Steve Jobs Biopic

The Verge reported yesterday that Sony’s massive security breach has turned up  treasure trove of information about the studio’s Steve Jobs biopic, which has since wound up in the hands of Universal Pictures. During its tenure with Sony, the studio wooed director David Fincher, who screenwriter Aaron Sorkin had worked so successfully with on the Facebook saga The Social Network — and earlier this year, the filmmaker had nothing but praise for the project.

“Is great. It’s a play, but a really quicksilver, cinematic one,” Fincher wrote in a February 23 email to studio head Amy Pascal and producer Scott Rudin. “I would think you would want to cast and rehearse very carefully (couple months). Shoot very quickly. (4 or 5 weeks — 8 days per ACT??) The venues would be easy (we could probably find them all in town). Editing is where we would spend time. Can SONY market a ONE MAN SHOW(?)”

Sorkin, who adapted the screenplay from the Walter Isaacson biography, previously divulged that the film would take place across three major scenes, each marking a major product launch (presumably Mac, iPod, and iPhone?). A March email references only four actual shooting locations: “Two auditoriums, a restaurant and a garage,” with a later missive specifically mentioning Symphony Hall in San Francisco, where Steve Jobs famously unveiled the NeXT after being banished from Apple.

Jobs’ official biographer also weighed in on the completed screenplay earlier this year, telling producer Rudin the script was “totally awesome… I have a tear in my eye having just finished. I was deeply moved by the narrative arc and by the beautiful end. I loved the line, ‘No way she’s not my kid,’” Isaacson wrote, apparently in reference to Job’s daughter, Lisa Brennan-Jobs.

US, UK Apple Online Stores Now Accepting PayPal Payments

Here’s one of those obvious decisions that for whatever reason wasn’t made until now: Re/code reported Thursday that Apple’s online stores in the United States and United Kingdom are now accepting eBay-owned PayPal as a payment option. The move makes complete sense given that PayPal can be used to pay for iTunes and App Store content, and Apple.com has also offered the PayPal Credit (formerly Bill Me Later) financing option for quite some time, which allows shoppers the option of interest-free payments spread out over as long as 18 months, depending upon the amount purchased.

Adobe Acquires Stock Photo Marketplace Fotolia

Adobe announced Thursday a deal to acquire Fotolia, described in a press release as “a leading marketplace for royalty-free photos, images, graphics and HD video.” The approximately 0 million cash acquisition is intended to bulk up the content offerings for Adobe Creative Cloud, whose more than 3.4 million current members will soon be able to “access and purchase over 34 million images and videos” from the online marketplace.

In a separate blog post yesterday, Adobe also announced an update to the Creative Cloud Libraries feature launched at the Adobe MAX conference in early October. The feature has now gained new collaboration and management features, allowing users to share assets and content libraries with colleagues in just a few clicks. The update is available immediately from the Creative Cloud Desktop software.

Follow this article’s author, J.R. Bookwalter on Twitter

(Image courtesy of Mashable.com)



Jeff Daniels Reportedly Joining Steve Jobs Film

The Aaron Sorkin-penned Steve Jobs biopic has had a tough time casting its lead role, locking in a director, or even sticking with a studio, but things finally appear to be falling into place. Now at Universal and with Danny Boyle (Slumdog Millionaire) directing, the film is reportedly adding Jeff Daniels (The Newsroom) as former Apple CEO John Sculley.

Daniels has recently worked with Sorkin on HBO’s The Newsroom, which landed the actor an Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series in 2013. His involvement in the Jobs project has yet to be finalized, but an official offer “is expected to materialize soon.”

[Above right] Jeff Daniels in The Newsroom. [Above] John Sculley with Steve Jobs.

If Daniels agrees, he’ll likely join Michael Fassbender in the role of Steve Jobs and Seth Rogen as Steve Wozniak. Of course, there’s still a chance he might pass, as many actors already have. Natalie Portman reportedly turned down the chance to play Steve Jobs’s daughter Lisa, and Leonardo DiCaprio, Christian Bale, and director David Fincher all walked away from the film.

Sorkin’s script focuses on the buildup behind three major product launches during Jobs’s career, which each segment taking around 30 minutes to watch. Despite its troubles, the production is still expected to start early next year.

Sorkin’s script is based on Water Isaacson’s acclaimed biography of Jobs that came out in 2011.

Follow this article’s writer, Leif Johnson, on Twitter.


Morning Report: 12.2-Inch iPad Mockup on Video, Steve Jobs iPod Testimony

iPad Pro mockup on video

How big is too big for an iPad? Our Tuesday Morning Report has a followup on yesterday’s iPad Pro news, complete with a video comparing what such a device might look like compared to current iPhone, iPad, and MacBook Pro models. Steve Jobs is also making headlines again, as is his successor Tim Cook, who popped into Georgetown yesterday to commemorate World AIDS Day. Click to read all the details!

Rumored Larger iPad Sized Up Against Current Apple Devices

Yesterday, we reported on the publication of potential schematics for a so-called “iPad Air Plus” or “iPad Pro,” reportedly a 12.2-inch edition of Apple’s popular tablet that could debut as early as next spring. On Tuesday, MacRumors reported that a YouTube user named Canoopsy actually went to the trouble of not only creating a mockup of just such a device, but also showing how it might look next to current-generation iPads, and even a 13-inch MacBook Pro.

The minute-and-a-half video reveals such a super-sized tablet would easily dwarf existing iPhone 6, iPad Air, and iPad mini models, but nearly matches the screen size of the MacBook Pro. The video also rightfully questions why Apple would even consider a tablet estimated at 12 ins. x 8.7 ins. x 0.28 ins., which is rumored to feature a new A9 processor and dual top and bottom speakers for improved stereo sound.

iPod Class Action Suit Makes Steve Jobs a Star Witness

Tuesday marks the beginning of yet another class action lawsuit against Apple, this time over older iPods capable of only playing music ripped from CDs or purchased on the iTunes Store, which plaintiffs say violated antitrust laws. According to The New York Times, attorneys plan to use emails and a videotaped deposition from Apple co-founder Steve Jobs to help make their case.

“We will present evidence that Apple took action to block its competitors and in the process harmed competition and harmed consumers,” explained Bonny Sweeney, the lead attorney for the plaintiff.

The potential damages could wind up costing Apple upwards of 0 million thanks to damning emails from Jobs such as a now-public 2003 missive where the late CEO questioned how the iPod maker could keep content purchased from up-and-coming services like Musicmatch off its coveted music players.

Apple CEO Tim Cook Visits D.C. Store for World AIDS Day

Apple really, really wanted to raise awareness on Monday for World AIDS Day, so Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook hit the streets of Georgetown, Washington, D.C., where he made an appearance yesterday at the company’s retail store there. According to 9to5Mac, Cook was accompanied by (RED) CEO Deborah Dugan, and both of them tweeted photos of the event on their respective Twitter accounts to celebrate.

Dugan noted that Apple has raised million (“and counting”) for the cause thus far, although that number reportedly dates back to June, well before the ongoing (RED) campaign for the holidays. Apple also sent a rare push notification to iOS devices on Monday with a brief message to “get great apps and help (RED) fight AIDS,” which caused some users to complain the iPhone maker was abusing the system to send unwanted, opt-out spam.

Follow this article’s author, J.R. Bookwalter on Twitter

(Image courtesy of YouTube and Canoopsy)



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