January 27, 2012

The Dark Knight Rises trailer breaks iTunes download record

The second trailer for the upcoming Dark Knight Rises (which I’m really looking forward to, as both a huge Batman fan and a big fan of Christopher Nolan’s work) has broken records on Apple’s iTunes movie download site, boasting a full 12.5 million downloads in just 24 hours, topping the previous record by 2 million. That’s a pretty solid debut for the “exclusive” trailer (exclusive, in this case, meaning it’s popped up on other video sites after its debut).

That previous record was held by none other than Marvel’s The Avengers preview, which came out earlier this year. Obviously downloads like these don’t make any money for Apple — they instead cost a lot more money, both in bandwidth and in things like technical support and oversight. But of course releasing free trailers like this promotes both the movie and the iTunes download service — that’s 12.5 million people who, when they want to go and download or rent a full movie, know where iTunes is and how it works. From Apple’s point of view, that kind of promotion is well worth it.

TUAW – The Unofficial Apple Weblog

Today At Cult Of Android: Google TV Drops x86 In Favor Of ARM, Google Earth Updated, And More…

Today At Cult Of Android: Google TV Drops x86 In Favor Of ARM, Google Earth Updated, And More…
What’s this? Android news on Cult of Mac?! Who the hell cares?! Maybe you don’t, maybe you do. Point is: these are a few of the popular topics going on in the Android world today. Maybe you’d like to know what the competition is up to, or perhaps your aunt received a Kindle Fire she needs to update. Regardless of the reason, having a resource such as Cult of Android allows you to learn more about what’s going on in the ecosystem powered by the world’s leading mobile OS.

Verizon Allowing 4G LTE Smartphone Users Free Access To NHL GameCenter Premium

What’s this, Verizon giving customers premium content for free? I don’t believe it. Well, it’s true. Verizon is allowing 4G LTE smartphone users free access to NHL GameCenter Premium. Normally a $ 9.99 premium feature, NHL GameCenter Premium gives hockey fans all the great features of the free version along with: More…

Google Earth Updated To Fix Crash Issues On Tegra 2 Devices

It used to be that having Google Earth running on your mobile device was a testament of its awesomeness. We’ve since gotten used to seeing this GPU intensive wonder installed on most devices, but having the world in the palm of your hands, is still pretty damn awesome! For some users rocking Tegra 2 devices however, Google Earth has been somewhat of a flat experience. Apparently there have been some problems between Google Earth and the NVIDIA Tegra 2 chips, causing the app to constantly crash on devices like the Motorola XOOM and Galaxy Tab 10.1. You’d imagine how dissapointing it would be, not have the ability to fly around the world on your Galaxy Tab, and thus, Google has finally released an update to fix these issues. More…

HTC Planning To Announce Quad Core Phones At MWC Instead Of CES?

There’s a rumor going around that HTC will be holding off the unveiling of their quad-core phones in favor of the Mobile World Congress. It wouldn’t be the first time we saw a company favor MWC over CES, but to say I’m not disappointed, would be a lie. While there’s no telling what HTC will unveil at CES, it would be a blow to tech enthusiasts attending and hoping to get their hands on an HTC quad-core device such as the HTC Edge. More…

Qualcomm To Debut Snapdragon GameCommand App At CES

Today Qualcomm announced its plans to launch the Snapdragon GameCommand App on opening day at CES. The Snapdragon GameCommand app is similar to the Tegra Zone, which will enable users to easily access over 100 Snapdragon™ GamePack featured games. I’ve never really been a fan of the whole processor specific gaming model, but as long as it’s a reality, we mine as well have an easy way to find the games. More…

Google TV Drops x86 In Favor Of ARM Based Hardware, Showing Off Next Gen Device At CES

Google has officially dropped x86 and is planning for the next generation of Google TV hardware to be ARM based. Partnering up with Marvell, Google’s next gen GTV will feature a low cost, energy efficient yet powerful, Marvell ARMADA 1500 HD Media SoC. This really is good news for Google TV and will hopefully bring a breath of fresh air to the otherwise dismal platform. More…

Google Tablet Targets Amazon Kindle Fire – Sparking Family Fight

There’s nothing like a family fight and one may be brewing between Android creator Google and the Kindle Fire, one of the few Android-based tablets able to lay a finger on the iPad’s overwhelming success. Although unconfirmed, a report suggests the Internet giant is planning to unveil its own tablet in early 2012 that could undercut Amazon’s price advantage. It brings tears of joy to the eyes of Apple fans. More…

Acer Iconia Tab A200 To Launch January 15, Prices Starting At $ 329.99

Acer has announced its plans to launch the Iconia Tab A200, their next 10″ tab offering, into the market on January 15th. The A200 is a Tegra 2 packing tablet with mid range specs but is set to be an early adopter of Ice Cream Sandwich, with a mid-February update in tow. Acer has also priced the A200 to be competitive unlike most tablet manufacturers, and with a $ 329.99 price, Ice Cream Sandwich, and the following specs, it’s a definite looker: More…

AT&T Brings 4G LTE To 11 New Markets

Great news for AT&T customers hoping to take advantage of AT&T’s blazing LTE speeds. AT&T has announced that it has flipped the switch on 11 new markets, bringing the total number of markets now enjoying 4G LTE to 26. While they have a lot of legwork to catch up to Verizon’s 119 cities covered, it’s still great news for current AT&T customers using, or considering buying, a 4G LTE device. So exactly which 11 cities are we seeing the newfound speeds in? More…

Cult of Mac

Italian court denies initial iPhone 4S ban

Samsung has lost another battle in its ongoing patent war with Apple. Its request to have iPhone 4S sales banned in Italy has been denied by the Italian courts. This comes barely a month after France similarly denied Samsung’s request for a sales injunction against the iPhone 4S.

Samsung had already tried and failed to block the iPhone 4S release in Italy back in October, so this latest smackdown from the Italian courts comes as little surprise. Thus far Samsung has had no success in its pursuit of sales injunctions against Apple’s handset, while Apple scored a temporary victory in Australia by getting sales of the Galaxy Tab banned there for most of 2011.

The ongoing patent dispute between the two companies comes as a result of Apple’s accusation that Samsung has blatantly copied the designs of several Apple products, including several models of iPhones and the iPad. The patent wars haven’t deterred Samsung from, um, paying homage to Apple’s designs, either; as Macgasm points out, the newly-released Samsung Galaxy Ace Plus is a carbon copy clone of the iPhone 3G’s design.

[via GigaOm]

TUAW – The Unofficial Apple Weblog

Tim Cook has option to convert $100M in vested Apple shares

By Mikey Campbell

Published: 05:58 PM EST (02:58 PM PST)
Apple Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook will have the option to convert over 200,000 shares of company stock, worth nearly $ 100 million, which will become vested in the first quarter of 2012.

A study released on Thursday by equity research firm Equilar revealed that more than $ 780 million of equity will be available for sale by Silicon Valley executives in the first quarter of 2012, and Apple CEO Cook leads the pack with an estimated $ 96.2 million option, according to the Wall Street Journal.

“Each year, the vesting of equity awards spikes in the first quarter,” said Equilar Chief Executive David Chun.

The firm used the data from the study to compile a list ranking the values of vested stock options for the industry’s top executives.

The $ 96.2 million estimate is based on Dec. 30, 2011 Apple stock prices, and overshadows the $ 16.4 million in upcoming vested equity that the list’s second place executive Google Chairman Eric Schmidt can cash in this quarter. Rounding out the top three is eBay CEO John Donahoe with $ 10.5 million in vested shares.

Cook’s shares include part of two restricted-stock-unit grants, one of which he received when he filled in as interim CEO during Apple co-founder Steve Jobs’ medical leave in early 2011.

Should the new CEO not choose to convert the shares, they of course would continue to accrue value as long as Apple’s stock price continues to rise.

A resurgence of Silicon Valley business has recently lead to an overall increase in stock sales as executives sold $ 1.6 billion worth of shares during the first quarter of 2011, a 50 percent rise from the $ 1.1 billion sold during the same period in 2010.


QuickWiFi Web App Allows You To Share Your Network Credentials The Easy Way

QuickWiFi Web App Allows You To Share Your Network Credentials The Easy Way

Install this theme yourself: http://brdrck.me/wifi/theme/vue

Jeff Broderick, the designer behind the beautiful iOS Settings Home screens shortcuts we detailed weeks ago, has released a new web app for easily sharing a secured network with multiple users. QuickWiFi is a simple web interface that lets you distribute your network credentials with others via a verified WiFi profile.

With QuickWiFi, you no longer need to give everyone on your network a SSID and password. You can create a unique URL that others can use to gain access to your network — no password required. If you want to keep your network secure from the outside but also offer an easy way for your friends to join, this is the perfect tool.

QuickWiFi Web App Allows You To Share Your Network Credentials The Easy Way

To get started, visit https://brdrck.me/wifi/ on your iOS device or Mac. Enter your network credentials and create your custom URL for sharing. Once your profile is created and an email is sent with your unique URL, you can customize the look and feel of your landing page with a little CSS. When you have your URL ready to go, you can send it to your friends and anyone with the link can login into your network on their iOS device or Mac without needing your password.

While the every day practicality of QuickWiFi may be minimal for most, there are several instances where such a tool could prove to be very useful. If you’re running a conference or having a lot of people gather in one place, sending a short URL around can be much easier than dictating your complex network password. You could send your URL to someone before they visit so that they can install the profile and get right on the network when they arrive.

QuickWiFi is a simplistic tool that solves an annoyance many have had to face. Props to Jeff Broderick for getting this off the ground.

Cult of Mac

Apple’s ‘Red Friday’ sales launch in several Asian countries

A one-day “Red Friday” sale on Apple’s online store has hit several Asian countries in celebration of the Lunar New Year, including China, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, and Thailand. Discounts on the Hong Kong store are broadly similar to the modest discounts Apple offered during its Black Friday promotion, with one-day price reductions of no more than ten percent on Apple’s own gear.

Discounts on third-party accessories are a bit more generous, so if you’re looking for a case or some other accessory for your Mac, iPhone, or iPad, the one-day Red Friday sale may be a great time to buy.

Apple’s Red Friday sale runs for the rest of today only, so if you live in one of the eligible countries be sure to check it out.

TUAW – The Unofficial Apple Weblog

Samsung denied iPhone ban in Italy

By Mikey Campbell

Published: 04:09 PM EST (01:09 PM PST)
An Italian court has denied Samsung’s request for a preliminary injunction against the iPhone 4S, making it the third time the South Korean electronics maker has failed to obtain a ban on Apple’s newest handset in Europe.

In a report from Italian news agency ANSA published on Thursday, it was revealed that Samsung’s bid to block iPhone 4S sales in Italy was rejected by the Milan-based Italian first-instance court for patent cases, according to FOSS Patents’ Florian Mueller.

The Italian court’s rejection marks the third straight loss for Samsung in its effort to curb Apple handset sales in Europe, and follows similar decisions by France’s Tribunal de Grande Instance de Paris in December 2011 and Dutch court Rechtbank’s-Gravenhage’s ruling in October.

Both companies are embroiled in a worldwide patent war, though thus far only Apple has seen success in its injunction requests and won bans against Samsung’s Galaxy Tab 10.1 in Germany, Australia and the Netherlands.

Mueller points out, however, that the Cupertino, Calif., company is only slightly ahead despite successfully banning the tablet in the three countries. He goes on to explain that Apple could potentially owe Samsung a significant amount in damages if courts in those states find that the preliminary injunctions were improperly granted.

Although the two electronics giants shot for short-goal wins in order to disrupt each other’s business, the plan was ultimately ineffective. It seems clear that in order to continue with this line of patent litigation, a regular comprehensive proceeding must take place which means that the dispute is unlikely to be resolved any time soon.

The patent war erupted when Apple filed a suit against Samsung in April 2011, alleging that the South Korean company blatantly copied the look and feel of the iPhone and iPad. Most recently, Apple’s motion in the U.S. was shot down in December.

The dispute now spans over 10 countries across four continents.


Google VP Marissa Mayer Loves Apple’s Airport Utility

Google VP Marissa Mayer Loves Apple’s Airport Utility

Google’s button cute VP of Location and Local Services, Marissa Mayer, has long been a self-avowed Apple fan. Heck, she once nominated Steve Jobs as the 2010 Time Magazine Person of the Year, and now, she’s openly singing the praises of Apple’s Airport range of wireless routers on her Google+ account.

On Tuesday night, Mayer wrote:

On the router question, I went out and bought a Netgear N600 at Walmart that same night. But, I had continued problems even with the new router — with range and devices getting conflicting IPs (I have a bunch of phones, tablets, Tivos, Google TVs, Apple TVs, etc.). So, for Christmas, I asked for an Airport Extreme and 2 Airport Expresses (to chain together and create a mesh with better range). I set them all up last night, got all the devices connecting, and so far so good. It’s not really a fair comparison, since there are 3 routers to the Netgear’s 1, but iStumbler showed a lot more signal strength throughout the house, rarely less than 45%.

I was really impressed with Apple’s Airport Utility and how simple it made the set-up and chaining of routers. Hard to make the experience of setting up of a home network beautiful, but at least it was easy.

I kind of wish I had gotten a time capsule for backups, but I was pretty focused on getting a good router system. Plus, that’s what DropBox is for ;) +Aseem Sood +Jeff Bartelma

Wireless routers seem to be about the one thing Google isn’t trying to compete with Apple in these days. Maybe it’s because the higher-ups know they can’t do any better?

John BrownleeJohn Brownlee is news editor here at Cult of Mac, and has also written about a lot of things for a lot of different places, including Wired, Playboy, Boing Boing, Popular Mechanics, Gizmodo, Kotaku, Lifehacker, AMC, Geek and the Consumerist. He lives in Cambridge with his charming inamorata and a tiny budgerigar punningly christened after Nabokov’s most famous pervert. You can follow him here on Twitter.

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Cult of Mac

iPad 3 May Be Getting The iPhone 4S’s Cameras + FaceTime HD, But Won’t Be Total Redesign [Rumor]

iPad 3 May Be Getting The iPhone 4S’s Cameras + FaceTime HD, But Won’t Be Total Redesign [Rumor]

What do we know about the iPad 3? It seems almost definite at this point that it will be slightly thicker than its predecessor, feature an A6 chip and a Retina Display when it is released in late March or April, but if iLounge‘s Jeremy Horwitz’s Twitter account is anything to go on, it might also be packing much better cameras.

While affirming earlier reports that the iPad 3 will be 1MM thicker than the iPad 2 to accommodate the Retina Display, Horowitz says you’ll hardly be able to tell, because the “curve radiuses on the body will change only a little to accommodate the added thickness, not dramatically. Think iPad 2 Pro, not a redesign.”

In addition, Horowitz says the front camera will become a FaceTime HD camera, and the back camera will be the same 8MP affair in the iPhone 4S. I personally doubt the latter: iPad’s don’t need great rear cameras, the tablet form factor is just too unwieldy to benefit from anything but a good-enough sensor. However, given how popular the iPad is for video chat, a FaceTime HD camera makes a lot of sense.

Last but not least, Horowitz says that while the iPad 2 will stick around next-generation, its price will drop to $ 399, not the $ 299 we’d previously heard rumored. Again, that seems a lot more in-keeping with Apple’s M.O. of having only $ 100 separate the price of the various models in the iPhone family.

[via 9to5Mac]

John BrownleeJohn Brownlee is news editor here at Cult of Mac, and has also written about a lot of things for a lot of different places, including Wired, Playboy, Boing Boing, Popular Mechanics, Gizmodo, Kotaku, Lifehacker, AMC, Geek and the Consumerist. He lives in Cambridge with his charming inamorata and a tiny budgerigar punningly christened after Nabokov’s most famous pervert. You can follow him here on Twitter.

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Cult of Mac

Apple pays $5 million to settle Elan lawsuit

Apple has reportedly opted to settle a patent dipute with Elan to the tune of US$ 5 million. The settlement allows the company to avoid a trial and possible ban of Apple products. Elan’s complaint was over two multi-touch patents.

Early last year, an International Trade Commission judge decided in Elan’s favor when Elan brought a complaint that Apple had used its multi-touch patents in the iPhone. At the time, it was estimated that Apple could pay as much as $ 70 million in the case. With that bargaining chip off the table for Elan, it received significantly less this week.

Apple did counter-sue Elan, but this settlement has brought that to an end, too.

TUAW – The Unofficial Apple Weblog