Apple revises App Store rules after rejecting Valve’s game streaming Steam Link app

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Apple quietly updated its App Store guidelines on Monday, while the keynote address of WWDC was happening in San Jose, to allow for mobile apps like Valve’s Steam Link game streaming service, according to Reuters. Steam owner Valve said last week Apple had initially rejected Steam Link, which lets consumers access and stream their PC game library onto a mobile device, due to apparent “business” conflicts. The change does not void Apple’s long-standing policy that no iOS app may host an app store of its own and allow users to purchase and download…

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Facebook reportedly gave Apple, Samsung unfettered access to user data potentially violating a 2011 FTC consent degree

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Facebook gave Apple, Samsung, BlackBerry and other device makers detailed access to user data and may have potentially violated a 2011 FTC consent degree according to the New York Times. The social network struck partnerships with at least 60 device makers so that they could offer messaging, “Like” buttons and other features without the need for an app. However, an NYT reporter found that the BlackBerry Hub, for one, was able to glean private data from 556 of his friends, including their religious and political leanings and events they planned…

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Apple faces battery pledge complaints

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Apple has been accused of finding unnecessary faults with iPhones and thereby profiting from a battery replacement initiative. When the US firm announced it had been slowing down iPhones in order to “preserve battery life” in December last year, it apologised for not telling people sooner. Facing a consumer backlash, it promised owners of the iPhone 6 and more modern models a discounted or free battery replacement. It said: “We are able to do the work we love only because of your faith and support – and we will never…

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EU Investigating Apple’s Purchase of Shazam

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The EU has launched an investigation into Apple’s acquisition of music identification service Shazam. It’s concerned that the deal could shrink consumer options for mobile music streaming services within the EEA (European Economic Area). In February, multiple countries, including Austria, France, Iceland, and Spain, requested that the European Commission assess the acquisition to determine whether it’s allowed under a European Union merger law. The deal, according to the commission, “may have a significant adverse effect on competition in the European Economic Area.” That request is now being acted on, with…

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Apple ‘to buy Shazam for $400m

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Apple is close to buying the music recognition app Shazam for about $400m (£300m), media reports say. Shazam, a UK company founded in 1999, allows people to use their smartphone or computer to identify and buy music through a snippet of sound. Shazam, which says it has more than 100 million monthly users, makes most of its revenue from commissions paid on referrals to Apple’s iTunes Store. Neither Apple nor Shazam have commented on the reports on the TechCrunch site. If the deal is confirmed, the music identifying App will…

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China’s phone market is now dominated by five companies, none of which is Samsung

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China is the most unique smartphone market in the world: a phone maker can be a global sales leader without ever treading beyond Chinese borders, and small upstart challengers can suddenly explode in popularity from out of nowhere. The latter aspect is becoming harder now, however, as the latest data from Kantar Worldpanel shows that China’s top five phone vendors are becoming a more solid and dominant group. Kantar reports that, for the calendar quarter ending in October, the top five of Huawei, Xiaomi, Apple, Vivo, and Oppo accounted for…

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Apple Watch Can Detect Hypertension and Sleep Apnea According to Study

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A new study out from health startup Cardiogram and the University of California San Francisco (UCSF) suggests wearables like the Apple Watch, Fitbit and others are able to accurately detect common but serious conditions like hypertension and sleep apnea. Cardiogram and UCSF previously demonstrated the ability for the Apple Watch to detect abnormal heart rhythm with a 97 percent accuracy. This new study shows the Watch can detect sleep apnea with a 90 percent accuracy and hypertension with an 82 percent accuracy. Sleep apnea affects an estimated 22 million adults…

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What happened to the iPhone 9?

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The long-awaited and extensively leaked special edition iPhone is finally upon us, and it’s called the iPhone X (pronounced “iPhone 10”). While the iPhone 8 is an iPhone 7S in all but name, the number jump across all the new iPhone models means we’re now officially missing an iPhone 9. Apple’s typical S naming is gone for this year at least, which isn’t entirely surprising. Samsung launched its Galaxy S8 earlier this year, and the company’s Note 8 will be available on September 15th (the same day iPhone 8 preorders…

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With iPod discontinuation, what are the alternatives?

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Smartphones have largely replaced portable media players for most people. It’s been a few years since Apple bothered to update its iPod touch, and it’s been even longer since any other company try to offer a good Android-powered alternative to Apple’s touchscreen media player. Apple is now abandoning its traditional iPod because most people with smartphones now use them for everything. However, many current smartphones – including Apple’s – don’t have FM, and none has a DAB radio. Worse, smartphones need regular app updates and sometimes annual operating system upgrades. You…

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HomePod firmware confirms the next iPhone will use infrared face unlock

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Pinning down the precise features of the next iPhone has been difficult of late. A standard “S” model iPhone 7 and 7 Plus that won’t be radically different from last year’s is expected, but we’re also expecting a high-end model. It appears, based on a tweet from developer Steve Troughton-Smith, that at least one of those models will have face unlock. And the high-end model (alternately referred to as the “iPhone Pro,” “iPhone 8,” or even “iPhone X”) will have a bezel-less screen that wraps around the speaker and cameras…

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