We're now part of 57Digital Ltd - click here to visit now

Apple Daily: ‘Leaked’ 12-Inch MacBook Air, China and Apple, iPhone Activations

It wouldn’t be Friday without a juicy Apple leak or rumor, and, as if on cue, photos of the display and lid of the rumored 12-inch MacBook Air supposedly leaked today. In other news, Tim Cook reportedly agreed to let Chinese officials check Apple products for security flaws, and iPhones accounted for precisely half of all phone activations in the U.S. during the last quarter.

‘Leaked’ Photos Reportedly Show Parts from 12-Inch MacBook Air

Just in time for weekend speculation fun, a set of photos have popped up on iFanr purporting to show the lid and display for the rumored 12-inch MacBook Air. The photos are noticeably less fuzzy than the usual leaked fare, and they helpfully show the parts stacked alongside a 13-inch MacBook Pro and a 9.7-inch iPad for comparison.

There’s some doubt about the authenticity of the photos, however, in that they show that the traditional backlit Apple logo for MacBooks has been traded out for the polished metal logo common to iPads. For its part, iFanr believes Apple might have chucked the widely beloved backlit Apple in favor of making the unit ever so slightly thinner.

Also missing are the gray bezels common to most new MacBook Air models, which means that Apple might be extending the glass to the edges of the unit as seen with the MacBook Pro. That sounds lovely, but it does clash with an earlier rumor that the device would have the familiar gray bezels. Of course, there’s always a good chance that Apple simply changed its mind.

Tim Cook Reportedly Agrees to Let China Search Products for Security Flaws

China’s massive market means a lot to Apple—so much, in fact, that Apple CEO Tim Cook has reportedly agreed to let the country’s officials inspect its products for security flaws, according to The Beijing News (via MacRumors). The officials are supposedly interested in finding “back doors” that would grant the Cupertino company (or anyone else, for that matter) access to private data stored in the units.


Calligraphy exhibit for the upcoming Apple Store in Hangzhou, China.

Lu Wei, director of China’s State Internet Information Office, had expressed concerns last year that Apple might be afforded a window into Chinese state secrets through its devices. Cook assured Wei that this was not the case in a well-publicized visit, but the official apparently wanted to check out the products for himself.

The danger of such a decision is that it might reveal some secrets about how Apple designs its own software, which could in turn lead to leaked knowledge regarding how to exploit the vulnerabilities. But if it means staying in China’s billion-strong market, that’s a chance that Cook’s apparently willing to take.

Half of All Phones Activated in Q4 2014 Were iPhones

Just in case you needed any more proof that the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus are wildly popular, consider the latest report from Consumer Intelligence Research Partner, which states that Apple accounted for half of all phone activations in the United States for Q4 2014 (via AppleInsider).

“Apple had virtually double the sales of Samsung, and five times that of LG. No other brand accounted for as much as 5% of US sales,” says Josh Lowitz, partner and co-founder of CIRP.

Keep in mind that, at 500, the data sampling is quite small for reaching such sweeping conclusions, and that 86 percent of activations came from consumers who’d upgraded from an earlier iPhone. Still, Apple has certainly accomplished a major feat here, and impressively enough, CIRP reports that 25 percent of new iPhone users were former Samsung users and that 15 percent came from LG phones.

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

News

Apple Daily: Apple Watch Scheduled for March, 12-inch MacBook Air Rumors

It’s hard to deny that the biggest Apple news of early 2015 is the impending launch of the Apple Watch, and guess what? There’s a new rumor out there that claims to have narrowed down the release window of the highly anticipated timepiece. But that’s not all — surprising new details appear to have emerged on the alleged 12-inch MacBook Air, plus there’s more news on who’s playing who in the upcoming Steve Jobs biopic.

Apple Watch Slated for March Releases, Sources Say

It’s early 2015 now, and as you might recall, that’s when we’re supposed to see the Apple Watch hitting the shelves. According to the ever-anonymous sources in the know consulted by 9to5Mac, however, “any day now” is actually sometime in March. The latest rumors have the backing of an earlier statement from senior vice president of retail Angela Ahrendts that we’d see the watch “in the spring” sometime after the Chinese New Year.

On the retail front, Apple is already preparing to train its teams in speaking about the device by having each Apple retail store send one or two representatives to either Cupertino, California or Austin, Texas to handle and learn about the watch between February 9 and February 15.

The report also states that Apple has continued to tweak the device since its announcement in September, not only through software improvements but also through external components such as the device’s charger.

The metal and glass “sport” model, currently thought to be the least expensive Apple Watch unit, is expected to retail for 9.

Apple Said to Make Thin, Almost Portless 12-inch MacBook Air in 2015

9to5Mac‘s anonymous sources from within Apple have also stated that the company’s rumored 12-inch MacBook Air is indeed a reality and that we’ll see it sometime this year.

Concept via 9to5Mac

Reportedly, Apple’s really slimming down on this one and it’ll lack almost all of the ports found in previous versions. Gone, for instance, are the standard USB and MagSafe ports; instead, we’ll get a headphone jack, a pair of microphones, and what looks like a USB Type-C port that will likely handle charging.

It’s so thin, in fact, that Apple employees are apparently calling the thing the “MacBook Stealth” internally. You can get an idea of what you’ll expect (according to the rumors) through the illustration above.

Perla Haney-Jardine Said to Play Steve Jobs’ Daughter in Biopic

Just under a month after word dropped from Variety that Natalie Portman had passed on the Steve Jobs biopic, presumably for the role of Jobs’ daughter, The Hollywood Reporter is now asserting that Perla Haney-Jardine has already been cast in that very role.

It’s a fitting role, perhaps, as she’s best known for her role as a daughter in the Kill Bill films, as Diane Lane’s daughter in 2008′s Untraceable, and as the Sandman’s daughter in 2007′s Spider-Man 3. Watch out for typecasting there, Perla.

Perla Haney-Jardine and Lisa Jobs, via Hollywood Reporter

Despite some initial problems with actors like Leonardio DiCaprio and Christian Bale dropping out and an entire ownership shift from Sony to Universal, the film looks like it’s on the right track again. Michael Fassbender is currently thought to be play Jobs himself, while Seth Rogen fills in as Steve Wozniak and Jeff Daniels plays early Apple CEO John Sculley. Kate Winslet is reportedly involved with the film, but her role remains unknown.

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

News

Morning Report: 12-inch MacBook Air Rumor, Disney World Adds Apple Pay

Apple Pay at Walt Disney World

Rub the sleep out of your eyes — the Christmas break is fast approaching, but the tech news never stops! Our Monday Morning Report has the details on a new 12-inch MacBook Air said to finally be entering production as early as next month, Apple Pay arriving at Walt Disney World this week, and the latest Hollywood starlet vying for a role in the Steve Jobs biopic. You can’t read about it if you don’t click forward!

12-inch MacBook Air Reportedly Entering Production in Q1 2015

If you’ve always felt like an 11-inch MacBook Air display was a little too small and 13-inch was simply too big, Apple may soon hit the sweet spot at last. DigiTimes today reported that Cupertino is expected to “enter mass production” on a 12-inch MacBook Air sometime during the first three months of next year, following what was apparently a successful pilot production prior to the close of 2014.

“Apple’s new MacBook Air features Intel’s Broadwell processors and a new chassis design to reduce the device’s overall thickness and weight, but the start of mass production has been hampered by low yield rates,” unnamed sources within Apple’s upstream supply chain told DigiTimes. “As the yield issue is gradually being resolved, mass production is expected to come in the first quarter of 2015.”

Quanta Computer is expected to manufacture the 12-inch MacBook Air, which is expected to be targeted more to the “high-end market segment.” The same sources also reconfirmed that Apple Watch manufacturing will also kick off sometime during the first quarter of 2015, which is the only vague launch date Apple has confirmed to date.

Walt Disney World Firing Up Apple Pay on Christmas Eve

Spending your Christmas at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida this year? According to WDWMagic.com, you’ll be able to breeze your way through the park and resort without ever having to take a credit card out of your wallet, thanks to Apple Pay support for iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus being enabled at “most stores, quick service restaurants, bars, and ticket sales booths.”

Walt Disney World previously announced Apple Pay support would arrive “before Christmas,” with the Mouse House squeaking the service in just under the wire on Christmas Eve, December 24. Portable payment terminals such as those as table service restaurants won’t be added at this time, and those traveling to Disneyland in Anaheim, California will have to wait until next year to use Apple Pay.

Kate Winslet Latest Starlet in Talks for Jobs Biopic

Hollywood has faced quite a few speed bumps on the way to putting Walter Isaacson’s biography on Apple co-founder Steve Jobs up on the big screen, but the road to production finally seems to be getting smoother. Variety reported Friday that Titanic star Kate Winslet is the latest Oscar-winning actress “in negotiations” for the lead female role in Universal Pictures’ biopic. Starring Michael Fassbender as Steve Jobs and Seth Rogen as co-founder Steve Wozniak, the big-budget film version is written by Aaron Sorkin and is being directed by Danny Boyle. The Newsroom star Jeff Daniels is also eyeing a potential role as former Apple president John Scully, although it’s unclear at this writing which role Winslet may be in talks for.

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

(Image courtesy of WDWInfo.com)

News

New PCIe Memory Delivers Amazing Speeds for MacBook Airs, Benchmarks Show

Much of the attention circling the new MacBook Air has focused on Intel’s new Haswell processors and the considerable improvements to battery life they provide, but it’s possible that the most impressive improvement is the PCIe-based flash memory in each unit. Indeed, it may be even more impressive that we originally thought, and that means great things for the new Mac Pros that will be housing them as well. According to a report by Anandtech released this morning, read/write speeds are approaching 800 mb/s on the new 13″ MacBook Air.

According to Anandtech reporter Anand Lal Shimpi, “The drive in my system uses a Samsung controller, although I’ve heard that SanDisk will have a PCIe solution for Apple as well. A quick run through Quick Bench reveals peak sequential read/write performance of nearly 800MB/s. This is a pretty big deal, as it is probably the first step towards PCIe storage in a mainstream consumer device that we’ve seen.”

Source: Anandtech

Shimpi wasn’t the only one to be impressed by the new speeds. As 9to5 Mac notes, French site MacBidouille was so blown away with the speeds that they initially thought a bug must have been causing a problem with the software. On a related note, MacRumors noted this morning that the new MacBook Air models on display at WWDC were performing three to eight percent better than previous models.

In the past, MacBook Airs reached speeds of 600 mb/s at best under the SATA 3 interface. The difference in speed is attributable to the PCIe flash’s ability to connect directly to the motherboard.

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

News

New PCIe Memory Delivers Amazing Speeds for MacBook Airs, Benchmarks Show

Much of the attention circling the new MacBook Air has focused on Intel’s new Haswell processors and the considerable improvements to battery life they provide, but it’s possible that the most impressive improvement is the PCIe-based flash memory in each unit. Indeed, it may be even more impressive that we originally thought, and that means great things for the new Mac Pros that will be housing them as well. According to a report by Anandtech released this morning, read/write speeds are approaching 800 mb/s on the new 13″ MacBook Air.

According to Anandtech reporter Anand Lal Shimpi, “The drive in my system uses a Samsung controller, although I’ve heard that SanDisk will have a PCIe solution for Apple as well. A quick run through Quick Bench reveals peak sequential read/write performance of nearly 800MB/s. This is a pretty big deal, as it is probably the first step towards PCIe storage in a mainstream consumer device that we’ve seen.”

Source: Anandtech

Shimpi wasn’t the only one to be impressed by the new speeds. As 9to5 Mac notes, French site MacBidouille was so blown away with the speeds that they initially thought a bug must have been causing a problem with the software. On a related note, MacRumors noted this morning that the new MacBook Air models on display at WWDC were performing three to eight percent better than previous models.

In the past, MacBook Airs reached speeds of 600 mb/s at best under the SATA 3 interface. The difference in speed is attributable to the PCIe flash’s ability to connect directly to the motherboard.

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

News

« Previous Entries Next Entries »