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Apple Daily: Retina MacBook Unboxing Video; Apple Wants TV Providers to Pay Hosting Costs

In today’s Apple Daily, a Vietnamese site ensures that we get a look at the thin new MacBook with Retina display more than a week ahead of the device’s launch. In other news, Apple reportedly wants channel providers to shoulder the costs and responsibilities of hosting streams for its upcoming online TV service.

Unboxing Video Shows New Retina MacBook Ahead of Release

Just a little over a week ahead of April 10, the date the new 12-inch MacBook with Retina display is supposed to hit shelves, Tinhte.vn of Vietnam has an unboxing video that shows the device outside of Apple’s carefully controlled presentation environments. The only catch is that the video is entirely in Vietnamese, but that shouldn’t be a problem so long as you’re only interested in getting a better look at the device from all angles.

And on that front, it delivers well. The video lasts for a full seven minutes, and it shows everything from the details or the device itself to the design of the adapter and the very box the whole setup comes in. Even better, if you can’t access the video from where you are, the site includes a selection of photos as well.


Apple Wants Networks to Bear Streaming Costs for Online TV Service

Apple’s upcoming online TV service is a massive undertaking, and it’s thus not surprising that Apple seems eager to keep some of the responsibility in the hands of others. A new report from Re/code claims that Apple wants the channel providers themselves to bear the burden of hosting the streams for their respective channels, in addition to paying most of the related costs.

The report claims that Apple executive Eddy Cue, who’s reportedly overseeing the project, believes Apple itself should focus on hardware and software — areas, in other words, the company knows well. In a similar fashion, the proposed setup would leave the responsibility of maintaining the streams in the hands of companies who (hopefully) know that area of the business better. It’s actually not that different from the structure that exists now in fragmented form on Apple TV and on iOS, in which companies like Netflix and HBO provide and stream the content while Apple merely hosts the apps.

The one main concern seems to be that such a setup would leave viewers with an unpredictable experience, as some channels would likely perform better than others at different times. But there’s apparently a strategic angle to the deal as well: if the networks host the streams themselves, Internet providers like Comcast won’t be as likely to “penalize the service.”

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


Apple Daily: The New Yorker Profiles Jony Ive, Apple Mystery Car Caught on Video

Jony Ive has never been so chatty as he is in a recent New Yorker profile, which covers everything from his thoughts on Apple’s various products to the particulars of his professional relationship with Steve Jobs. In other news, someone finally caught one of those teched-up Dodge Caravans Apple employees are driving on camera.

The New Yorker Posts In-Depth Interview with Jony Ive

Apple design chief Jony Ive once maintained a reputation for reclusiveness, but lately he’s been making appearances and giving interviews with such frequency that it seems like he’s making up for lost time. His most recent interview appears in this week’s New Yorker, and Ian Parker’s sprawling, fact-packed portrait of the design giant is easily the most interesting to date.

The feature covers some of the lesser-known stories associated with Ive and Apple, such as how Ive first came to the Cupertino company in the mid-’90s and how he met and worked with Steve Jobs. Moreover, perhaps more so than any other interview before it, it reveals just how central Ive is to the company and how his influence extends to virtually every level of Apple.


Apple ‘Mystery Car’ Caught on Video

The big news out of Cupertino last week was The Wall Street Journal’s revelation that, yes, Apple is creating its own electric and possibly self-driving car to compete with Tesla and Google, but it’s still not clear if it has anything to do with the Apple-leased Dodge Caravans with strange contraptions on them that have been seen roaming the streets around San Francisco Bay. The mystery continues, but a MacRumors reader by the name of Jonathan Shiu managed to capture video of one of the vehicles in action.

Fittingly enough, Shiu captured the footage in Steve Jobs’ hometown of Palo Alto, California. The car itself was driving alongside Juana Briones Park on Clemo Avenue, where it briefly pulled into a parking space and turned around. (Some viewers have argued that there’s no one driving it, but a hand on the wheel is clearly visible in several of the shots.)

It’s extremely likely that the Caravans have less to do with automated cars and more with a Google Street View-style future that may come to future updates to Apple Maps. Street View not only allows a ground-level reference of what certain points on a map look like, but it also helps increase the accuracy of Google’s service.

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


New Drone Video Shows Progress on Apple’s ‘Spaceship’ HQ

It’s been almost half a year since we’ve checked in on the progress of Apple’s new “spaceship” campus, and a new video created by the folks over at AppleInsider shows that it’s going up quickly. Captured with a DJI Phantom 2 Vision Plus drone, the footage reveals that most of the major buildings on the campus are already taking shape.

The video’s particularly interesting since it shows that crews have already started work on the reportedly 1 million “event center” where Apple will reveal new products. The structure will eventually take up around 120,000 square feet and rather modestly seat around 1,000 people. Apple had originally built a “prototype” structure on the site, but that’s long gone.

Apple Campus 2 Tour – December 2014 from AppleInsider on Vimeo.

Perhaps predictably, the structure that’s closest to being finished is the new parking lot, which (along with two lesser parking structures) will allow parking for more than 5,000 cars. Construction is currently underway for the building’s third floor.

Also visible is a new underground access road, which will eventually join the main employee entrance with the employee-parking area housed under the centerpiece “spaceship” facility.

The whole project’s expected to be ready in late 2016, and at this rate, it looks as though Apple might meet that goal. Some changes might still occur, however, as Apple was revising the plans to accommodate additional offices, parking garages, and testing facilities as recently as October.

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


Apple Releases Video Showcasing the Making of Its Latest Holiday Ad

The latest in Apple’s phenomenal run of holiday ads came out earlier in the week, and it focuses on a granddaughter who uses Apple’s technology to create a contemporary duet with an old recording of her grandmother’s. Today Apple released a followup video discussing how the ad was made, showing that its latest short is not just about bridging the gaps between two generation of people, but also between two generations of technology.

Specifically, the ad features a young woman (played by musician Dana Williams) who finds her grandmother’s recording of “Love Is Here to Stay” (sung by Rhiannon Giddens) that was made with a 1940s “Voice-O-Graph” machine. The ad (or “film,” as Apple calls it on its website) implies that her grandmother made it for her husband, who was apparently stationed overseas at the time.

The story might be sentimental fluff, but there’s a shred of truth to what we’re seeing on screen, particularly since Apple used an actual working Voice-O-Graph in the possession of Third Man Records. Giddens sung the part for the original recording, and then Williams recorded her own vocals and mixed the two together in GarageBand. Williams claims in the short documentary that she uses Apple’s GarageBand for most of her her music, and that she likes it because “anyone who’s not tech savvy like myself can find their way around it.”

The ad itself is somewhat understated, especially in comparison to last year’s “Misunderstood,” which won Apple its first Emmy Award for Outstanding Commercial since its iconic “Here’s to the Crazy Ones” short, created in 1998 at the height of the “Think Different” campaign. While “Misunderstood” focuses on an introverted teen’s use of his iPhone’s video capabilities, “The Song” highlights GarageBand and the iPad mini.

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.


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