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  1. Popular card game not coming to mobiles until 2015; Blizzard still working on rebuilding game for smaller screens; Android tablet version coming soon. A mobile version of the critically acclaimed collectable card game Hearthstone will not be released until 2015, its developer Blizzard Entertainment has announced. While the PC and iPad editions have now amassed more than 20 million players worldwide, Blizzard has said it needs more time rebuilding the title for smaller mobile screens. However, the Android tablet version is still on schedule for release by the end of 2014. "Throughout the past year, many of you have been asking about the release date for Hearthstone on Android. The team has been hard at work to bring Hearthstone to that platform, and is making great progress," reads a notice on the Hearthstone blog. "We’re taking things one step at a time and we’ve got our sights set on a release for Android tablets, our next new platform, before the end of the year. "We’re also close to having Hearthstone out to our iPhone and Android phone users, but it’s become clear that we need a little more time to get that version right. While we have a build up and running internally, it needs a bit more work, and we don’t feel like we’ll be ready to share it with you until early next year." Because a maximum of 14 cards can be played on a Hearthstone board, each with their own details and statistics, condensing this to the size of a mobile phone whilst keeping those details legible means a straightforward port is out of the question. "It’s very important to us that the phone experience for Hearthstone is just as accessible as the tablet and PC versions," Blizzard wrote. "One of the biggest challenges with that is revamping the user interface so it feels intuitive and offers the same quality Hearthstone experience, but this time from the palm of your hand. "Releasing Hearthstone on iPhone and Android phones is something we’re incredibly excited about, but ultimately we’d rather take the extra time to make Hearthstone’s user interface on the phone customized to feel great for the platform, rather than a port that doesn’t take into account the limitations of a smaller screen." Since it was formally released on PC in March, and then on iPad in April, Hearthstone has cultivated a community of hardcore and casual players, with more than 20 million people having played the game. The free-to-play title recently expanded with the single-player Naxxramas challenges, which also included some thirty new cards. The next major update to the game, according to Blizzard, will add around 100 new cards. Add Rep and Leave a feedback Reputation is the green button in the down right corner on my post
  2. "Sales for iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus exceeded our expectations for the launch weekend, and we couldn't be happier," CEO Tim Cook says. Apple sold a record 10 million iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus smartphones this weekend, the company announced today. The new phones went on sale on Friday, September 19. The previous record-holder was the iPhone 5 line, which combined to sell 9 million devices during its launch weekend last year. Apple added that sales of the new iPhone 6 models could have been higher if the company was able to meet demand. Strong performance out of the gate is not much of a surprise, given that the iPhone 6 broke preorder records for Apple, with more than 4 million preorders placed in under 24 hours. The iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus are now available in the United States, Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, Puerto Rico, Singapore, and the United Kingdom. The devices will launch in more than 20 additional countries on September 26, and will be available in a total of 115 countries by the end of 2014. "Sales for iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus exceeded our expectations for the launch weekend, and we couldn't be happier," Apple CEO Tim Cook said in a statement. "We would like to thank all of our customers for making this our best launch ever, shattering all previous sell-through records by a large margin. While our team managed the manufacturing ramp better than ever before, we could have sold many more iPhones with greater supply and we are working hard to fill orders as quickly as possible." Apple says the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus represent the "biggest advancements in iPhone history." The standard model sports a 4.7-inch screen, while the Plus features a 5.5-inch screen; both are Retina HD displays. In addition, both iPhone 6 models run on Apple's proprietary A8 chip that promises "blazing fast performance." They also work with Apple Pay, the company's new payment option, and feature the iOS 8 update. The iPhone 6 begins at $199 for a 16 GB model, while the Plus starts at $299 for a 16 GB model. Those prices are assuming you lock in for a two-year contract. For more on the new iPhones, be sure to check out GameSpot sister site CNET's extended coverage of the smartphones. Add Rep and Leave a feedback Reputation is the green button in the down right corner on my post
  3. Two different iPhone models have been announced today. As expected, Apple today revealed the latest entries in its iPhone line of smartphones: the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. Each offers a different display size and resolution: the iPhone 6 has a 4.7-inch screen (1334x750 resolution) and the 6 Plus a 5.5-inch screen (1920x1080). Both offer the newest version of Apple's Retina Display technology, called Retina HD, and a wider viewing angle. The iPhone 6 will be available in 16GB ($199), 64GB ($299), and 128GB ($399) sizes. The 6 Plus will be available in the same storage sizes, but at a $100 premium: $299 for 16GB, $399 for 64GB, and $499 for 128GB. (Note: these prices reflect those available with a two-year contract.) Both devices ship on September 19, with preorders beginning on September 12. The iPhone 5S will drop in price to $99 and the 8GB 5C model will be made available for free. Due to its larger size, the 6 Plus offers some UI changes, particularly when using the device in landscape mode. Apps will work on both models even if they haven't been updated for them, with iOS simply scaling them up to the proper resolution. A new 64-bit chip is being introduced with these new phones in the Apple A8. It'll offer an improvement in performance that will allow for, among other things, better-looking games. To demonstrate this, Super Evil Megacorp debuted a new game called Vain Glory, which looks to be a new MOBA with some very nice graphics for a mobile device. In addition, a number of companies have committed to bringing more games to iOS, including EA, Epic Games, Square Enix, CD Projekt Red, and Rebellion. Despite being larger than the 5S, both the 6 and 6 Plus will be thinner than the previous model. The 5S was 7.6 mm thick, compared to the 6's 6.9 mm and the 6 Plus' 7.1 mm. The devices' power buttons are now located on the side. As shown in the graphic below, battery life is allegedly much-improved over the 5S; 3G talk time is 24 hours on the 6 Plus and 14 hours on the 6, compared with 10 on the 5S. Other features of note include support for Wi-Fi calling, 802.11ac wireless, and an 8MP iSight camera that features a new sensor and allows for 1080p video to be taken at 30 or 60 frames per second. Today's news comes almost a year to day after the iPhone 5S was announced. Add Rep and Leave a feedback Reputation is the green button in the down right corner on my post
  4. Are you sitting comfortably? Good. This could take a while. The iPhone 5S is less than a year old, but rumors are gathering about its replacement, which should – if previous versions are anything to go by – be called the iPhone 6. Will it be bigger, or stay the same size? Will it have standout features? Will it be joined by an iPhone 6C, or the iWatch? None of these questions and many more will be answered until Tim Cook takes the stage later this year, but we can’t wait until September. We’re just not that patient. So, we’ve collected all the latest gossip we’ve heard right here. We hope you enjoy. Updated on 09-04-2014 by Malarie Gokey: New reports from the Wall Street Journal and New York Times confirm both iPhone 6 models will launch at September 9 event. Apple announced it will livestream the event on its website.
  5. Invites from the Cupertino, Calif., electronics giant give almost no hints, saying "wish we could say more." But the general consensus is that Apple will unveil its next smartphone. Apple's invitation to a press event Sept. 9 offers few clues.Shara Tibken/CNET Apple on Thursday sent out invites for a press event on Sept. 9 in its hometown of Cupertino, Calif. The company provided few hints about what will be announced beyond saying "Wish we could say more." That could indicate something related to Siri, Apple's digital voice assistant. Generally, Apple is expected to introduce its newest iPhone, dubbed the iPhone 6. The company also could show off awearable at the event.The event will come a year after Apple introduced the iPhone 5S and 5C and a week after arch rival Samsung is set to unveil its Galaxy Note 4 phone-tablet hybrid, or phablet. Apple has added a new iPhone every year since former CEO Steve Jobs introduced the smartphone line in 2007, and new iPhones have been unveiled in the fall since 2011. Many market watchers expect Apple to introduce two newiPhone 6 models with display sizes of 4.7 and 5.5 inches, though some recent reports speculate one device could be released at a later date. Analysts expect the iPhone 6 to be one of the largest product launches in Apple's history -- both in terms of device screen size and total sales. The companyreportedly has asked manufacturing partners to produce about 30 percent to 40 percent more iPhones by the end of this year than it ordered for its initial run of last year's iPhone 5S and 5C. For Apple, having a successful iPhone 6 launch is vital. Apple hosts only one phone event a year, and it generates more than half its revenue from its smartphone line. The iPhone serves as the linchpin to Apple's overall growth, particularly as the market awaits the widely speculated iWatch and as the iPad struggles against lower-cost rivals and larger phones. Thursday's invite came earlier than many market watchers expected. Typically, Apple sends out invites to the event a week before the launch. This time around, it gave reporters more notice, possibly because the invites would go out right after Labor Day if following the typical schedule. But the invite also came the morning after rivals Samsung and LG unveiled new smartwatches, which likely caused Apple to overshadow the Korean companies' news. Apple is building a new structure on the De Anza College campus for its event Sept. 9. The venue on the De Anza College campus also is a change for Apple. It has tended to hold most device launches at the Yerba Buena Center in San Francisco or on Apple's campus in Cupertino. But Apple also has some history with the Flint Center. Steve Jobs unveiled the first Mac there in 1984, and he also showed off iMacs at the location in 1998 and 1999. The Flint Center can accommodate a larger crowd than the recent venues Apple has used, indicating the event's importance to the company. Apple already has started making the Flint Center its own. The company has been building a large structure on the college campus, which was earlier spotted by MacRumors. We've contacted Apple and will update the report when we have more information.
  6. It has often been assumed that the iPhone experience is together in many ways that Android is not, say iPhone fans. Samsung’s Galaxy S5 has been accused of being slow and laggy, and many an iPhone performance test claims that iPhones best Android smartphones each year in terms of their performance on a number of levels. Well, Apple’s latest announcement seems to point to the contrary. The Cupertino has announced an iPhone 5 Battery Replacement Program due to some defective units (a very small percentage, it’s been said) that have batteries that drain faster. Apple says that the defective units are those that were sold between September 2012 (the month of the iPhone 5 launch) and January 2013, and those who purchased an iPhone 5 during that time can bring their device(s) to local Apple retail stores starting on August 29th. It’s times like these that show how universally similar smartphones can be across all operating systems. No matter how great the smartphone, how much better you think it is than all others, smartphones are made imperfect because humans are – and even the most premium smartphone brands are subject to the same defective issues as non-premium smartphones are. Please refer all Apple fanboys to articles such as this to make them aware that, if Android smartphones have their share of criticism, so do iPhones.
  7. The iPhone 6 will be a bit safer to use than the iPhone 5s and iPhone 5 – and every other iPhone Apple’s made since 2007. That’s because iPhone maker Apple, Inc. has decided to ban the use of n-hexane and benzene in most of its production factories due to these chemicals placing workers and users at risk for cancer, reproductive issues, and nerve damage. N-hexane is used to wipe smudges from iPhone screens before they are packaged and shipped so that the iPhone you get out of the box looks brand new. Benzene is a carcinogen (cancer-causing agent) that provides a protective coating for iPhone components. After the environmental group Green America warned about these chemicals used to manufacture iPhone parts as well as the fact that factory workers weren’t given protective gear to limit exposure to these chemicals, Apple conducted its own investigation. While the company’s decided in lieu of the carcinogenic nature of these chemicals to ban them from the majority of its factories (if safer alternatives can be found), Apple can still use them in some factories. According to regulations, the company can use benzene if a smaller amount than 0.1ppm is located in breathing zones or areas of exposure. N-hexane must be limited to 28ppm. While the use of both benzene and n-hexane are unwelcome, at least safety standards are tightening on these chemicals. Perhaps these findings explain why Apple products have yet to make China’s environmentally-friendly product list.
  8. iPhone 6 photos leaked in recent weeks have shown the back of the iPhone. We’ve rarely seen the front display of the iPhone. Now, we get to see the iPhone 6 that is in beta testing mode at the moment. The new phone shows us the Apple boot logo that appears when starting up the iPhone, but we don’t get to see the display of the phone just yet. Bummer – we wanted to see if the iOS 8 rumors and leaked icons were the real deal here. Oh well, we’ll have to wait for another day. We get to see the iPhone 6 box, however, but it provides few clues as to what to expect from the new iOS 8 icons. We don’t see anything but iOS 7 icons on the box (no Health or Healthkit appear, just Passbook and the usuals), but we do get to see the white background that resembles the iPhone hardware color itself. The bottom icon row on the iPhone 6 box is a little troubling. We don’t know what made Apple believe that the gray row background would look good with the rest of the icon row backgrounds being white. It looks a bit tacky, if you ask us. Even if this is a pre-production box, we hope Apple doesn’t continue the gray and white color conflict that it’s got on the front of the iPhone 6 box when the phone arrives this Fall. There isn’t much to see beyond the iPhone 6 box and the front of the phone – but, as an iPhone, it is something new to encounter. As for what we know, the iPhone 6 still looks to appear with two size models (4.7-inch and 5.5-inch) this September, featuring a new sapphire crystal display for higher-end models and Gorilla Glass 3 or 4 for lower-end models along with an iTime wearable. While we’ve seen countless photos of the iPhone 6, the look of iOS 8 is what’s got us interested at the moment – that, and whether or not we’ll see a 13MP back camera on the iPhone 6. In recent YouTube torture tests, the sapphire crystal display remained durable despite key scratching, knife hits, and even shoe presses. KGI Securities Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has said that he seems a little concerned about how sapphire crystal will hold up in torture tests after the phone is released. Sapphire crystal seems tough at times and fragile at others. The date for the unveil has been set for September 9, with an iPhone 6 release around Sept. 19 or 20.
  9. The cases from accessory maker Spigen are based on early specs for the expected 4.7-inch version of Apple's next iPhone. Prospective iPhone 6 buyers can already preorder cases even though the phone hasn't yet been announced. Korean mobile case and accessory maker Spigen has unveiled a dedicated product page touting itsiPhone 6 cases with rendered images illustrating how the cases themselves would fit snugly into Apple's next iPhone. Spigen said it based the look of the iPhone 6 on leaked data to help it create the renders seen on its page. The company is also rumored to launch a 5.5-inch iPhone, but reports are sketchy as to whether that version will be ready for takeoff this year. Either way, with the current consumer craze for big-screened phones, Apple needs to bump up the display of its flagship phone to lure in consumers, win back market share, and stay competitive with Android rivals.Reports have been flying that Apple will announce a 4.7-inch iPhone, upping the display size from the current 4 inches. A recent report from Recode said that Apple will unveil the iPhone 6 at a media event on September 9. The cases displayed by Spigen are specifically designed for the 4.7-inch iPhone with four different variants: two thin-fit cases selling for $15 each, an ultra-hybrid going for $25, and a tough armor edition costing $35. Each case is available in a variety of colors. Spigen also tried to cook up some audience excitement about the next iPhone or iPhones via the following blurb: The iPhone 6 could be the largest iPhone launch ever. With smartphones increasing in size, so have consumers demand for an iPhone with a larger screen. The iPhone 6 is here to answer that demand. It is all but assured that Apple will launch a 4.7 inch iPhone 6 this September. However, the more elusive 5.5 inch iPhone 6 is still mostly a mystery. Due to leaked data, we have a good idea of what the iPhone 6 will look like and we've included renders of what we believe to be some of the more accurate ones. Bigger but thinner and lighter are you excited about the new iPhone 6? The product page also offers some older videos in which Spigen is able to cleanly fit its cases onto early dummy units of the iPhone 6. Still, iPhone 6 buyers may want to err on the side of caution and hold off on ordering any case until the actual phone hits the market. A spokeswoman for Apple declined CNET News' request to comment on the Spigen cases. Update, 7:33 a.m. PT: Adds Apple declining to comment.
  10. But a prior report claimed that production was already set to kick off last month. Which report is true? The iPhone 6 is now facing its final test phase in preparation for mass production. At least, that's the latest scuttlebutt from Chinese media. Purportedly based on sources at Apple supplier Foxconn, a report from Chinese blog site Weiboclaims that the iPhone 6 is now in a stage called product validation test (PVT), according to the G for Games blog. The PVT stage means that the iPhone assembly line ramps up to full speed to see if any hitches creep into the process. A small number of iPhones are manufactured for a quality-control check, and the assembly line may be tweaked if the process needs any refinements. Mass production then starts as soon as the PVT passes muster. However, a July report from Chinese media claimed that mass production of a 4.6-inch iPhone 6 was already slated to start in July, while production of a 5.5-inch model would kick off during the second week of August. So which report is correct, assuming either of them are? One possible explanation is that the July report may have been accurate at the time but that Apple ran into issues that led to a delay in actual mass production. Another explanation is that one or more of the sources for these two reports simply has the facts wrong. The source of the newest report is Xiang Ligang, a former professor at the Beijing University of Posts and Telecommunications and currently CEO of a Chinese publication called CCTimes, according to G for Games. As such, G for Games gives him some credibility based on his expected knowledge of Apple's Chinese supply chain sources. For now, though, take all of this with the usual grain of salt as these items are still firmly in the rumor stage. Whether it's already reached mass production or is just about to reach it, the next iPhone needs to be ready soon. The iPhone 6 is expected to be unveiled next month, most likely at a media event on September 9, according to Recode. If true, that means Apple must be prepping production of the new iPhone in time for a consumer rollout later in September or early October at the latest. A spokeswoman for Apple declined CNET's request to comment on the mass production reports.
  11. Leaked photos examined by blog site uSwitch imply Apple may enlarge the screen of its next iPhone but keep the device small enough to use with one hand. Though it may offer a larger screen, the next iPhone could still fit and work nicely in one hand.Apple's anticipated iPhone 6 will reportedly adopt a 4.7-inch screen to lure in consumers craving big-screened phones. Does that mean you'll need two hands to work and play with the larger phone? Not according to a report released Friday by tech blog and product comparison site uSwitch.Giving the iPhone 6 a bigger screen almost implies that the phone itself will also have to grow in size. If so, the downside is that a larger phone might not fit as comfortably in one hand as do the current 5S and 5C models. Users, especially those of us with small fingers, might have to use two hands to reach the top of the touchscreen or the bottom area near the home button.But an analysis of "exclusive photos" of the 4.7-inch iPhone 6 garnered by uSwitch along with leaks from known Apple leaker Sonny Dickson suggest that Apple has cooked up some ways to keep the expected iPhone 6 small despite its larger screen.In one photo examined by uSwitch, the area of the iPhone 6 near the homebutton seems to have been reduced in size when compared with the same area on the the iPhone 5S. Other photos appear to show that Apple has also employed smaller bezels on the sides of the screen to further keep the phone small enough to fit in your hand and your pocket.Based simply on leaked photos, information like this should always be taken with a grain of salt. But uSwitch has tried to add some credibility to its data by pointing to a code called "6G" on the iPhone screens that it analyzed. According to supply-chain sources and iPhone repairers in the UK, putting the letter G after the model phone number is a common naming convention, as the iPhone 4 was known as the iPhone 4G and the iPhone 5 as the 5G.Of course, the photos may still not be the real deal, which means the information about a small but big-screened iPhone 6 might not be credible.However, one of the problems with big-screened phones is their overall size, often requiring the use of two hands to work them. Trying to top the competition with its own large-screened phone, Apple could have easily played around with the size to make sure that the 4.7-inch iPhone fits snugly for those of us who still prefer the one-handed approach.
  12. The Moto 360. We’ve heard about how awesome of a smartwatch it’s going to be when it arrives, and we’ve even seen pictures of the fabled smartwatch that Moto 360 fans are becoming restless about. Motorola, it’s time to hand over that smartwatch. The longer you wait, the lower the sales. Apple blogger John Gruber decided to poke some fun at the Moto 360 recently with a comment about the watch: “It looks like Motorola’s designers tried to draw as much attention as they could to the 360’s stupid flat-tire display shape. The only way this could get funnier would be if it doesn’t even ship until after Apple announces their wrist wearable thing next month.†There are a few things we can take away from Gruber’s comment. First, Gruber notes that Apple has a “wrist wearable thing,†though he doesn’t say it’s a smartwatch. What could this mean? It could mean that Apple’s wrist wearable may be similar to a fitness band or bracelet than an actual watch. Though, we’ve heard much about the 1.6-inch and 1.8-inch OLED displays that Apple looks to place into the new iDevice. With that said, Apple could be after producing more of a Samsung Gear Fit competitor than anything else. We simply don’t know the answer at this point, but Gruber’s comment is interesting. He could simply mean that we don’t know exactly what Apple’s doing because we’ve not seen one photo of the fabled iWatch. And, keep in mind, too that he doesn’t call it the “iWatch.†We don’t know how the name caught on in the tech press, but Apple’s never said anything remotely resembling the fabled name that’s become the common name associated with it. We think that, should Apple name it “iWatch,†the company should give kudos to the person who first came up with the name that’s spread like wildfire for the last two years or so. Next, Gruber points to “next month†as the date of the iDevice unveiling, but this is nothing new; we expect Apple to announce its iDevices next month, and we couldn’t imagine Apple waiting until October to reveal the iWatch along with its iPad Air 2 and iPad Mini 3. Since the iWatch will pair via Bluetooth with the iPhone 6, September looks to be the ideal time to announce the iWatch. While providing these little juicy tidbits of detail, Gruber also makes fun of Motorola’s Moto 360 smartwatch. If we’re honest, we’d have to agree with Gruber. Much hype has been published across the Web regarding the Moto 360: “it’s gorgeous,†they say, “it’s the best Android Wear smartwatch out there,†others have said. Well, that’s not exactly the case. It turns out that we, like Gruber, believe that the “flat-tire display shape†is nothing more than a rounded smartwatch, and some will like the design while others won’t. Some of us here at Inferse prize Samsung’s Gear smartwatches, and happen to prefer a square smartwatch over a rounded one. We don’t all like the idea of having a smartwatch resemble the nerdy calculator smartwatches that became such a big deal in the ‘90s. Some of us believe that a contemporary watch deserves a contemporary design. Some will appreciate what Motorola brings to the game, but the Moto 360’s been hyped so much that Motorola should really be ashamed that it’s waited so long to bring the smartwatch to the market. After all, competitors Samsung (Gear Live) and LG (G Watch) will more than gobble up whatever sales Motorola could’ve gained, had the company prized a quick release a little better. “They’re waiting to get it, right,†many have said – but how long does it take to get a smartwatch right? How many months of hype will customers tolerate before, tired in their wait, they decide to settle on something that, in many ways, may actually be better than the Moto 360 they’ve been waiting for? At this point, Motorola’s drained whatever surprise its smartwatch could’ve made in the market. Releasing the Moto 360 now is far too late to the game, considering that the iWatch and iPhone 6, as well as the Gear 3 and the Galaxy Note 4, will all arrive next month. And finally, Android Wear is in its infancy. Sure, it may have about 25-30 apps available for use, but why would any user want to rely on Google Now to type its text messages accurately when Google could’ve provided an in-built, on-screen keyboard to do the job? Android Wear may be a powerful platform in days to come, but it’s got a long way to go before it gains the respect it wants. With that said, we happen to believe that Gruber’s laugh at the Moto 360 packs more of a punch than the actual Moto 360 will – if and when it finally arrives. In the meantime, keep in mind that Apple will announce the iPhone 6 and the new iWrist wearable on September 9th, with a release of the devices to occur around September 19th.
  13. The iPhone 6 looks to be one of the hottest smartphones of the year, but we now have what could be the official date for the iPhone 6 announcement. Re/code, has pinned Tuesday, September 9 as the date of the official iPhone 6 announcement. What we’ve seen so far is that both a Chinese Weibo account showed an iPhone 6 poster with the date “9 19,†indicating September 19 as a possible announcement date. Amazon Japan suggested that the iPhone 6 would be available on September 30th, with an educated guess for the iPhone 6 announcement coming at the beginning of the month. It seems as though Apple will unveil both the 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch iPhone 6 models at its September event though we don’t have any official information on whether or not Apple’s patched up its production issues with sapphire crystal glass. As we’ve said time and time again, Apple’s purchased a sapphire crystal glass production facility out in Arizona to start making its own sapphire glass in-house, leading Gorilla Glass manufacturer Corning Inc. to continue arguing that its Gorilla Glass is more durable than sapphire crystal. At the same time, however, KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo says that he and other analysts have something of a reserved nature about whether or not sapphire crystal glass will arrive on the iPhone 6. Apple’s been concerned about drop tests once the iPhone 6 arrives. That, and the problem Apple’s had with manufacturers regarding the implementation of a smaller battery into what will be a larger 5.5-inch iPhone 6 body than usual, have been the majority of Apple’s production woes. Sources say that Apple’s solved the battery problem and found a manufacturer who’ll keep the iPhone 6 battery thin and light while still giving a bit more juice for the larger screen (at around 2,500mAh), but we’ll have to wait and see. If Apple’s production woes show anything, it’s that Corning may be right. This won’t stop Apple from getting sapphire crystal onto the iPhone 6 this Fall, seeing that sapphire crystal does protect against key strokes, knife cuts, and even shoe impact. Sapphire crystal bends when placed under shoes – giving it a flexibility that current displays don’t possess.
  14. We’ve spent a lot of time here at Inferse leaking details about the iPhone 6, as well as early photos of Apple’s next-generation iPhone. Well, as usual, the Chinese clones are out and about – and this iPhone 6 clone is rather close to the original. It’s hard to distinguish if you place it up against the iPhone 6 photos in circulation across the Web. Someone decided to create an iPhone 6 clone that matches the rumors we’ve heard about the device. As for the specs, the iPhone 6 clone (or the “liePhone 6,†as some are calling it) features a 2.4MP front-facing camera, a 12.6MP back camera, 2GB of RAM, and a 4.7-inch display. But after the metal body, display size, RAM, and cameras, the rest of the liePhone experience is a disappointment: there’s a 960 x 540 screen resolution, which is woefully below the supposed 1700 x 960 resolution that Apple’s looking to bring to the iPhone 6 experience. To add more salt to the wound, the iPhone 6 clone isn’t running iOS 8 (or even iOS 7 for that matter), but Android 4.4.2 KitKat – which is a modern version of Google’s OS, but not the most recent update to Android (which is actually Android 4.4.4 KitKat).
  15. Hashtags are becoming a popular way to search for subjects and expressions, as well as a way to give a shoutout on social media when sending a message. Unfortunately, there’re some hashtags (perhaps #ROFL or #SMH, for example) that users simply don’t understand when they’re used. There’re those who aren’t up-to-date on the latest hashtag lingo and don’t know the meanings to hashtags because they don’t use them on a regular basis. If you’re in that camp, Twitter’s got a “Twitter hashtag for dummies†feature that’s now available via the Twitter for iPhone app. Now, when you want to use a hashtag, type the hashtag symbol (#) followed by the three, four, or five letters that you want to use or inquire about. When you do so, Twitter will now explain what the acronymic expression means when you search for it.
  16. It’s been said time and time again that Tim Cook’s not an innovator like Steve Jobs. As of last summer, some tech analysts were calling for Tim Cook’s resignation as CEO because he didn’t possess the engineering nature of Apple’s former late CEO. At the same time, however, Tim Cook is Steve Job’s handpicked successor for the Apple throne – and, whatever the reason, Steve Jobs chose him. One reason Cook was Jobs’s choice may have something to do with his skill in retail operations. Cook’s been on the hunt to bring Apple customers back to Apple retail stores across the United States, particularly because US customers have a tendency to shop for new iPhones at their local retail stores. Most contract-minded individuals looking for a new iPhone rely on their carrier (AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile, and Sprint), while off-contract customers who desire a T-Mobile or AT&T prepaid agreement buy their devices from either T-Mobile or AT&T retail stores. Some buy their devices from local Apple retail stores so that they can also pick up an accessory or two – but the majority of customers buy from wireless carriers. Tim Cook wants to change this wireless carrier mindset of American iPhone customers who think of the Apple Store as the last place they’d turn to for their iPhone purchase. With this goal in mind, one new rumor churning out of the mill suggests that Apple may offer early upgrade plans to its customers sometime soon (perhaps this Fall with the arrival of the iPhone 6). Now, T-Mobile iPhones can be purchased at Apple stores for off-contract agreements, but T-Mobile customers must pay full price for an unlocked iPhone 5s (for example), which comes in at around $692, or get on a two-year agreement with carriers AT&T, Verizon, or Sprint. The new early upgrade plans would take the original T-Mobile price at an Apple Store (full price for an iPhone 6) and allow T-Mobile customers, with a credit check, to purchase the device for a certain amount down with a certain amount added to the customer’s T-Mobile bill each month. As with Verizon’s EDGE plans and AT&T’s Next plans, Apple Store customers would get to sign agreements with Apple stores but get the new iPhone 6 for $0 down with a certain amount due each month. After paying off about 50% of the iPhone 6 price with 6 months of the agreement completed, iPhone 6 users would be eligible to upgrade from a 4.7-inch iPhone 6 to the 5.5-inch iPhone 6. Apple only has one iPhone announcement each year, so six-month upgrades will leave iPhone customers with nowhere to go. Of course, if an iPhone user wants to upgrade from a 16GB to a 32GB, 64GB, or 128GB model, however, the customer can make that decision as well. With Apple’s decision to bring iPhone 6 early upgrade plans to its American retail stores, the company’s sending the message that it really wants to win its customers back in retail. Apple’s first move to win back numbers in retail stores involved granting T-Mobile customers access to iPhones that were specifically intended for T-Mobile’s network (AWS-enabled iPhones, as opposed to typical unlocked iPhones that were once incompatible with T-Mobile’s 4G LTE network and only ran on 3G wireless).
  17. Apple’s set to release two larger iPhone 6 models in September, and, as was the case with the release of the first-generation iPad Mini, analysts worry about the sales of the iPad. What complicates the matter is that Apple’s recent earnings report shows that iPad sales are down from the same quarter in 2013. It’s been said that iPad Mini sales have cannibalized larger iPad sales, seeing that a number of consumers find that the 8-inch tablet is ideal for gaming, travel, and portability. The iPad Mini has had its success, it’s true – but the large iPad (now known as the iPad Air) has also gained its share of adherents, who want a larger display with a tablet that still lives by the “thinner, lighter, and faster†mantra that’s come to characterize Apple products. With the introduction of a 4.7-inch iPhone 6 and 5.5-inch iPhone 6 models reduce the number of iPads? The answer is more complex than either “yes†or “no.†Factors surrounding the iPhone 6 / iPad cannibalization question Sure, we can be honest and admit that some individuals may prefer a larger iPhone 6 than an iPad, and many may find the iPhone 6 display to be more comfortable than reading experiences with iPhones in the past. At the same time, however, the size of the iPhone is nowhere near the size of Apple’s iPad Mini and iPad Air. Even if Apple does release the 4.7-inch iPhone 6 (which seems probable at this point), a 4.7-inch screen is still not as comfortable as, say, the 7.9-inch Retina iPad Mini or the 9.7-inch iPad Air. There’s a large gap between a 4.7-inch and a 9.7-inch display, namely 5 inches across – which allows the iPad Air to do things (gaming, for one) that doesn’t seem as comfortable on a 4.7-inch screen. Some of us here at Inferse own Samsung’s 5.7-inch Galaxy Note 3 as well as the 5-inch Nexus 5 – and neither display, no matter its size, is comparable to the gaming experience we’ve had with the third-generation iPad. Even if you take a game such as FIFA 14, soccer players on the five-inch smartphones are still too tiny, and the controls are too difficult to maneuver. The iPad’s gaming experience has been effortless and continues to be (two years in). There’re some things that smartphones can do better than others, and smartphones may have greater portability – but they can’t best the gaming experience on a tablet, no matter their size. There’re some significant size differences in both the display and body that make tablets the better gaming device than smartphones. We’re not afraid to go out on a limb and say that the iPad Air and iPad Mini are the better devices for even watching movies. Yes, sometimes, we’ve reached for our smartphones to watch a YouTube or Netflix feature when our iPad battery is on empty; we’ve enjoyed watching the movies up-close, and smartphones make better devices when watching videos and getting screenshots. Still, however, the iPad Air and iPad Mini are the better devices, even weighing more than the iPhone 6 will weigh because their size provides more enhanced user experience. This isn’t to say, however that we’re not aware of how manufacturers are starting to bridge the gap between what smartphones and tablets can do. Tablets today are being used to make phone calls, have video chats, and send emails and documents (just like smartphones). Pretty much everything you can do on a smartphone can be done on a tablet (and vice versa), but the issue boils down to size. The iPhone 6, even at 4.7 and 5.5 inches across, is still a smaller device than an iPad Mini or iPad Air. And there’s one final factor to keep in mind: tablets provide a better visual experience because everything is magnified. We’ve had times where reading an email on a 4-inch screen is difficult because the display is too small. Even reading emails on a five-inch display can prove to be difficult at times when emails come in small print because we’ve found ourselves having to manually zoom on the screen to get emails to appear in a print we can read.
  18. First, Amazon Japan, now a new photo. It seems that iPhone 6 rumors and release dates are popping up all over the place. We’ve said here at Inferse that, if the September 30 release date provided a few days ago was true, then Apple would announce the new iPhone 6 models around September 19 or 20. A new image has taken the guesswork out of it all, giving us a clear date (and photo) for the release of the iPhone 6. The iPhone 6 flyer (which was posted via a China Weibo account) that sports the price of the iPhone 6, as well as the release date. The release date simply says, “9 19,†alluding to September 19. The source seems to indicate that the iPhone 6 models will launch in China on September 19th, so we could see an earlier launch in the US, UK, and other places. As of right now, however, we’ve got two launch dates for the device to start selling in China and Japan, but nothing closer to home for Apple’s own home country. The interesting factor about the flyer is that it shows not just the 4.7-inch iPhone 6, but also the 5.5-inch iPhone 6. Earlier rumors stated that Apple didn’t feel confident enough about the 5.5-inch sapphire crystal display passing torture tests, so the sapphire crystal display iPhone 6 models (the 5.5-inch ones, to be exact) would’ve no more than 10 million units at launch. Apple may still have production shortages, but, like the iPad Mini Retina problems, Apple feels it can’t afford to not deliver when it comes to larger-screen iPhones. Leaked documents from the recent Apple/Samsung trial show that Apple realized “customers want what we don’t have†in the larger screens of Cupertino’s top Android rival (Samsung). Rest assured, if the image is legitimate, Apple’ll launch the coveted 5.5-inch iPhone 6 model this September. Both the 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch iPhones are listed, along with their prices: the 4.7-inch iPhone 6 will sell for RMB 5288 ($900USD), the 5.5-inch iPhone 6 selling for RMB 6288 ($1000USD) at launch. Keep in mind that whenever international prices in China and Japan are provided, these prices are often more expensive than what US and UK citizens will pay for the iPhone 6. With that said, it seems likely that the 4.7-inch iPhone 6 will sell for a starting price of $700USD here in the US for the 16GB model – the same price for an off-contract iPhone 5s in the US. The larger 5.5-inch iPhone 6 (16GB) will sell for $800, with the 32GB, 64GB, and 128GB models selling for $100, $200, and $300 more than the entry-level model. One rumor that’s been proven true is that Apple would charge $100 more for the 5.5-inch iPhone 6. For those who’re interested, you’re looking at a $299 out-of-pocket cost with a two-year agreement. The iPhone 6 color on the flyer is black, confirming our statement about black iPhone 6 from some time ago.