March 18, 2012

Your iPod Is Worth Over $8 Billion In Pirated Content According To RIAA [Video]

Your iPod Is Worth Over $  8 Billion In Pirated Content According To RIAA [Video]
Have you heard horror stories about Sally May Blankenship who lives in Randomtown U.S. town and got sued by the RIAA for like $ 17 million because she downloaded a Spice Girls album off of Shazamm? Better yet, remember SOPA, PIPA and the absured laws being championed by Congress because they claimed piracy was costing us “$ 58 Billion” in lost annual income? The RIAA claims an iPod contains $ 8 Billion dollars worth of intellectual property.

Just how ridiculous is that number? Rob Reid – founder of Rapsody – just gave this hilariously insightful TED Talk that reveals just how preposterous the RIAA’s claim are about piracy hurting the U.S. economy. Prepare to giggle your pants off at the RIAA and MPAA.

[via Gizmodo]

Scott Forstall Talks iOS Numbers: Quarter Billion Devices Sold and iPad is Number One [Let's Talk iPhone]

busterheineBuster Heine heads Cult of Mac’s Social Media presence as well as contributes posts as often as he gets around to it. Twitter:

(sorry, you need Javascript to see this e-mail address)| Read more posts by .

Posted in News | Tagged: , , , , , , , |

Cult of Mac

Tim Cook reportedly ‘grilled’ Path co-founder over privacy issue

By Josh Ong

Published: 12:06 AM EST (09:06 PM PST)
A new report claims Apple CEO Tim Cook harangued Dave Morin, co-founder of the company that developed the “Path” app, when he learned that the software was uploading users’ address books to its servers without their permission.

According to people familiar with the meeting, Cook “hauled” Morin into Apple’s Cupertino, Calif., headquarters to be “grilled” by him and other executives after hearing of the privacy violation, Bloomberg BusinessWeek reported on Thursday (via Business Insider).

A developer discovered the behind-the-scenes upload feature in February. Though “Path,” a social networking app, wasn’t the only app uploading users’ address books, its high-profile re-launch late last year left it in an unfortunate spotlight for the controversy.

The revelation struck a nerve with users and the media and prompted strong criticism of “Path.” The company quickly apologized and removed the offending feature from its software.

Apple subsequently distanced itself from the situation by stating that apps collecting or transmitting personal information without obtaining permission are in violation of its guidelines. The iPhone maker promised to require explicit user approval before apps access contact data in a future software release.

Recent privacy-related concerns have attracted the attention of lawmakers. Two U.S. congressmen sent a letter to Cook last month over the address book issue. Earlier this month, Senator Charles Schumer called for an FTC investigation of Apple and Google over both the address book controversy and a potential loophole with geo-tagged photos. Both companies responded that they were willing to meet with the senator to discuss his concerns.


Tim Cook Grilled Path CEO At Apple HQ Over Contact Privacy Scandal

Tim Cook Grilled Path CEO At Apple HQ Over Contact Privacy Scandal

You don’t want to cross Tim Cook.

Apple has always taken privacy very seriously. When it was discovered that popular app Path secretly uploaded an iPhone user’s entire address book to its servers, the media reacted very strongly and Apple was forced to get involved. Path was violating Apple’s terms of agreement, and it was discovered that many other apps in the App Store had been doing the same thing for quite some time. Apple said that it would clarify the privacy issue for end users with a future iOS update.

High-profile meetings take place at Apple’s headquarters in Cupertino, California all the time, but the public rarely gets to hear about what is said behind closed doors. As it turns out, Path CEO Dave Morin was summoned to Cupertino by Apple CEO Tim Cook to talk about the recent privacy scandal his app caused.

Bloomberg Businessweek reveals:

Path co-founder Dave Morin got hauled into Apple’s headquarters to be grilled by Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook and other executives, according to people familiar with the meeting but not authorized by Apple to discuss it.

Dave Morin isn’t your average member of Silicon Valley. He formerly served as a key member at Facebook and has also worked on product and marketing at Apple. We can’t imagine how nerve-racking it must have been to sit down with the new Apple boss for a chat.

Thankfully, it’s all been worked out and Path won’t steal your contacts anymore. It looks like Tim Cook made sure of that.

Apple COO Tim Cook Sells Stock Worth $ 68M

Cult of Mac

FaceTime not supported over LTE on new iPad

Reviews for the new iPad went live last night. While most reviewers were pleased with the tablet’s LTE performance, there was one glaring omission. According to The Verge, the new iPad does not support FaceTime over LTE.

You can turn on the iPad’s WiFi hotspot and fire up FaceTime on the iPhone for video chat over LTE, but the native iPad FaceTime client is forced to use WiFi only.

The Verge reached out to Apple, AT&T and Verizon for comment, but none of the companies responded.

TUAW – The Unofficial Apple Weblog

FaceTime on Apple’s new iPad not allowed over LTE

By Josh Ong

Published: 02:55 AM EST (11:55 PM PST)
A new report has confirmed that Apple’s third-generation iPad will not be allowed to make FaceTime calls on an LTE network.

The Verge performed some testing late Wednesday and discovered that the new iPad will need to connect to a Wi-Fi network to use FaceTime. Though the news hardly comes as a surprise, since Apple’s 3G-enabled iOS devices are unable to use FaceTime over 3G, it does put to rest questions about whether the added download speeds from LTE might open up the feature for 4G cellular networks.

Report author Dieter Bohn found the LTE FaceTime restriction to be “doubly frustrating” because Verion LTE iPads can generate Personal Hotspot Wi-Fi networks that would presumably allow other iOS devices to make FaceTime calls via the same LTE connection.

Late Apple co-founder Steve Jobs unveiled FaceTime alongside the iPhone 4 in 2010. The video calling service launched as Wi-Fi only, but Jobs promised that Apple would “work a little bit with the cellular providers” in hopes of bringing it to mobile networks.

Early reviews of the iPad show that LTE service on the device is significantly faster than previous-generation 3G networking. All Things D journalist Walt Mossberg said he averaged download speeds of 17 megabits per second on Verizon, while a colleague averaged 12 mbps on AT&T’s network. The New York Times’ David Pogue tested the iPad in three cities and got speeds ranging from 6 to 29 mbps.

The new iPad goes on sale at 8 a.m. local time in 10 countries on Friday. The device will be available in the U.S., Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore, Switzerland and the U.K, as well as Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.


Carriers Win Again: The New iPad Won’t Let You Use FaceTime Over 4G

Carriers Win Again: The New iPad Won’t Let You Use FaceTime Over 4G

Poor Dieter Bohn from The Verge can’t make a FaceTime call over 4G on his new iPad.

The new iPad uses blazing fast LTE 4G networking to let you stream YouTube faster than you can say “Tim Cook’s your uncle,” but you still can’t use the tablet to make FaceTime calls over 4G or 3G. Calls fail to connect when the third-gen iPad isn’t connected to a WiFi network, just like they do on the iPhone.

iPhone users have been hammering for FaceTime over 3G since the video calling technology was introduced by Steve Jobs and Jony Ive back in 2010, but Apple has yet to flip the switch. Due to the data-heavy nature of video calls, the carriers are likely to blame.

Jailbreakers have been able to use FaceTime over 3G since 2010 (I’ve done it many times and it works great!), but the feature is still blocked for everyone else. The Verge notes that FaceTime calls are estimated to weigh in at about 3MB per minute. Think of the kind of strain that would be put on AT&T, Verizon, and Sprint if millions of people were suddenly calling each other over 3G and 4G. Not to mention the fact that data plans aren’t exactly forgiving to bandwidth hogs these days.

Before we ever see FaceTime over 3G and 4G, the carriers need to work something out with Apple. Perhaps the video stream quality could be lowered or a call could only last for a certain amount of time. Anything would be welcomed at this point.

Leaked Skype Docs Indicate Verizon iPhone May Be Coming Soon

Cult of Mac

FTC Subpoenaed Apple over Google search on iOS

The U.S. Federal Trade Commission subpoenaed Apple as part of a Google antitrust inquiry says Bloomberg. The FTC asked Apple to hand over documents that detail its search agreement with Google. Google has been the default search engine for iOS since the iPhone launched in 2007. Rumors suggest Microsoft, in 2010, tried unsuccessfully to unseat Google from this position.

At the heart of this investigation is the assertion from Google’s competitors that the search giant used its position to favor its own businesses in search results, increase advertisement rates for its competition, and control the mobile search market.

TUAW – The Unofficial Apple Weblog

New iPad sample photos improve over iPad 2

Vietnamese website allegedly has a new iPad and has been posting images and benchmarks from the device. A third posting from the group now showcases the photo-taking ability of the tablet device. The images suggest the camera on the new iPad is a huge improvement over the iPad 2, but not as crisp and detailed as the iPhone 4S.

Apple announced the new iPad last week and confirmed the tablet will have a 5-megapixel rear camera with autofocus, 1080P HD video recording, and digital image stabilization. People may laugh at the idea of using the camera on a device as big as the iPad, but it has application in business and education where the camera can be used in classroom exercises or corporate presentations.

You can view the rest of the iPad’s sample photos on Tinhte’s website.

TUAW – The Unofficial Apple Weblog

First sample photos from new iPad show dramatic improvement over iPad 2

By Josh Ong

Published: 02:37 AM EST (11:37 PM PST)
Ahead of Friday’s launch, a series of sample photos allegedly from the rear camera of the third-generation iPad have surfaced, revealing a significant improvement over the shooter in the iPad 2.

Vietnamese website Tinh.te claimed on Tuesday to have received an LTE-capable version of Apple’s new iPad. The site published an unboxing video and benchmarks for the touchscreen tablet.

Later on Tuesday, a group of photos supposedly taken by the new iPad were posted to (via MacNN) the website’s forums. It’s clear from the images that the new iPad camera is not as good as the 8-megapixel camera on the iPhone 4S, but, when compared to the iPad 2, which had a less-than-1-megapixel resolution, it’s a definite step up.

The forum poster admitted that additional testing, including night shots, would need to be performed to accurately assess the camera, but even some of the daytime shots appeared to pose a challenge for it. MacNN surmised from the sample images that the new iPad’s camera will be “truly usable for everyday shooting” and would likely produce higher quality images than tablets with comparable camera resolution, such as the Sony Tablet S or the BlackBerry PlayBook.

Apple announced the third-generation iPad last week at a media event in San Francisco, Calif with an improved camera that uses the same optics system as the iPhone 4S. The 5-megapixel rear camera has an infrared filter and ISP built into the device’s A5X chip. It features auto-focus and auto-exposure and can record in 1080p video.

The new iPad goes on sale on Friday in the U.S. and 11 other countries or regions. Some eager customers have already begun lining up for the device at Apple Stores around the world.

The lack of a camera was one of the major criticisms leveled against the first-generation iPad. With the release of the iPad 2, some complained that the camera wasn’t good enough. It remains to be seen whether the camera upgrades made to the third generation will be enough to silence the iPad’s critics.


AT&T offers settlement to iPhone user who sued over 3G throttling

By Josh Ong

Published: 09:30 PM EST (06:30 PM PST)
AT&T has offered a settlement to a California resident who successfully sued the carrier in small claims court for throttling his unlimited 3G data plan.

iPhone user Matthew Spaccarelli won an $ 850 award in a California court last month. He sued AT&T after discovering that the speed of his grandfathered-in “unlimited” 3G service was being reduced after just 1.5GB to 2GB of data usage, despite the fact that the company offers a 3GB for the same price.

Spaccarelli had originally asked the court to award him $ 10,000, but the judge granted him $ 85 for each of the 10 months left on his contract.

Though AT&T has said it plans to appeal the decision, the company has reached out to Spaccarelli to discuss a settlement, the Associated Press reports. The carrier also undertook a routine legal move of asking him to refrain from mentioning that it had offered to start settlement talks.

However, Spaccarelli says he is not interested in a settlement and has posted AT&T’s legal documents online, encouraging consumers in similar situations as him to follow his lead.

AT&T has also threatened that it could shut off Spaccarelli’s service because he has admitted to wirelessly tethering devices to his iPhone in violation of AT&T’s terms of service. For his part, Spaccarelli says he doesn’t care if they do because winning the case was what was important to him.

The carrier began throttling the top five percent of customers based on data usage last October after warning in July that the policy would go into effect.

A week after the small claims court decision was handed down, AT&T implemented a new throttling policy. The company said it would begin reducing download speeds of unlimited 3G subscribers after their usage exceeds 3GB, while 4G LTE subscribers would be throttled after 5GB.

Rival carrier Verizon also has a policy to limit downloads of its most-active customers, though the company calls it “network optimization” rather than throttling. Those limitations, however, only take place when a users is on a “congested cell site.”