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Enter to Win an iPhone XR and InvisibleShield Glass+ VisionGuard

iLounge and InvisibleShield are giving away an iPhone XR and InvisibleShield Glass+ VisionGuard.

As we use devices more, our exposure to high-energy visible blue light (HEV) increases. HEV blue light has been shown to contribute to digital eye strain which can cause dry and irritated eyes, sleep disruption and loss, blurred vision, and premature eye aging, especially in children. InvisibleShield has developed a new screen protector with Eyesafe® technology that not only protects your phone from scratches and impacts, but also filters harmful blue light from your device screen.

Protective Eyesafe® Layer
The Eyesafe® technology in VisionGuard protects your eyes from blue light which can contribute to digital eye strain. By blocking harmful wavelengths of light before they leave your screen, VisionGuard is an easy choice for those who care about eye health.

Preserves the True Colors of Your Screen
Glass+ VisionGuard protects your eyes from harmful blue light while maintaining the superior color performance of your device display. Instead of removing blue entirely and distorting your screens color like some eye health solutions, VisionGuard has been expertly engineered to maintain the brilliant look of your screen.

Industry-Leading Impact Screen Protection
Glass+ VisionGuard is chemically strengthened at the molecular level to preserve that glass-like feel of your screen. Its proprietary Ion Matrix™ technology provides the ultimate defense against drops, dings, and scratches.

Advanced Clarity
Glass+ VisionGuard is designed to work flawlessly with the enhanced optics of your device’s screen. Its 100% clarity rating means high-definition screen protection that’s so clear, you won’t even know it’s there.

To find out more about InvisibleShield's protection products or Zagg products, please visit https://www.zagg.com or it's many social channels.

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Apple partnering with Oscar-winning studio A24 for movie production

With several TV productions already ongoing, Apple now appears to be making its first big move into film production through a deal with the Oscar-winning indie studio A24, Variety reports. Apple noted that the partnership is a “multiyear agreement” that will involve multiple films, but was vague on other details such as whether these will be theatrical releases or simply part of its digital platform, and no financial details were revealed. A24 is the independent studio behind a number of “edge, auteur-driven projects,” including “Moonlight,” for which it won’t a best picture Oscar, as well as “Room,” “The Witch,” and “Ex Machina.” Variety notes that A24 already has deals with DirecTV and Amazon, but these simply provide special distribution rights for the studio’s own films, and those deals remain in effect as the partnership with Apple is not exclusive, and the studio will also still be continuing to produce and release its own films, despite earlier rumours that Apple may have been looking to acquire A24 or another similar indie studio.

Apple posts third developer betas of iOS 12.1.1, tvOS 12.1.1, second watchOS 5.1.2 beta

Apple has pushed out a third beta of iOS 12.1.1, build 16C5050a, a minor updates that make some slight improvements to the FaceTime UI and other small changes. While the release notes only indicate a minor security change regarding tighter TLS certificate requirements, other reports have indicated that the ability to take Live Photos on a FaceTime call have returned, along with placing the camera toggle button back on the main FaceTime screen. A third beta of tvOS 12.1.1 has also arrived, as build 16K5044a, along with a second beta of watchOS 5.1.2, build 16S5046a. The tvOS 12.1.1 beta release notes indicate a fix to an issue where Apple Configurator could install configuration profiles on nonsupervised devices, but it’s otherwise unclear what else has changed in these latest betas.

Apple ‘aggressively’ recruiting engineers on Qualcomm’s home turf

Apple has posted several job listings for engineers in the San Diego area, Bloomberg reports, as part of what appears to be an aggressive move to draw talent to its own chip design team and away from rival Qualcomm, which has its U.S. operations based in that city. This marks the first time Apple has publicly recruited for these types of roles in the Southern California area, although as the report notes the company has a history of setting up chip design facilities in other areas where rivals such as Intel and AMD have bases of operations, ranging from Portland, Austin, and Orlando to sites in Israel, Germany, Taiwan, and Japan, allowing it to draw on existing bases of engineering talent by poaching from rival companies in those areas.

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Apple now offering SIM-free version of iPhone XR in the U.S.

Apple has begun offering the iPhone XR in the U.S. for purchase outright without a carrier contract, less than a month after the device initially went on sale. Apple normally launches new iPhone models in the U.S. only for purchase with specific carriers, presumably to prioritize availability for carrier partners and discourage people from purchasing iPhones for the express purpose of reselling them. While the iPhone XS actually was available SIM-free on launch day, this was not the case with the iPhone XR, perhaps due to a more limited supply. SIM-free iPhone models come unlocked and can be used on any supported carrier worldwide, and prices for the SIM-free versions of the iPhone XR range from $749 for the 64 GB model to $899 for the 256 GB capacity.

Daily Deal: Air Bud Wireless Bluetooth Earbuds 2.0

In our iLounge Deal for today, we’re offering the Air Bud Wireless Bluetooth Earbuds 2.0 for only $36.99 — that’s 62% off the regular price. The Air Buds 2.0 are making wireless listening accessible to everyone! With state-of-the-art Bluetooth 4.2 tech, you can enjoy crisp audio with minimal bulk and without a huge dent in your wallet. Stay connected, enjoy your playlists, and stay trendy with these awesome, highly flexible earbuds.

Get the Air Bud Wireless Bluetooth Earbuds 2.0 now for only $36.99

Apple quietly replaces Apple Watch Charging Dock with virtually identical new model

MacRumors has discovered that Apple has quietly released a new version of its Apple Watch Charging Dock, although it’s seemingly a mystery as to exactly why, since the new dock appears identical to the original Apple Watch Charging Dock. As MacRumors notes, the new dock has a model number of MU9F2AM, while the original was model MLDW2AM, but the lack of any obvious changes suggests only internal updates. The new dock also had to go through FCC approval, but the FCC filing offered no additional insights into what has changed, or why Apple needed to release a new version.

V-Moda unveils BassFit Wireless In-Ear headphones

V-Moda has just announced its new BassFit Wireless, a new set of sport headphones that are designed to provide uncompromising bass while withstanding even the most rigorous workouts. Built to make no compromises on sound, fit, battery life, or reliability, BassFit Wireless feature premium 10mm dynamic drivers that promise deep and precise bass without affecting clarity, an exclusive TriFit design that gives users a choice of ear hooks, ear fins, or a combination of both, and up to 11 hours of battery life on a single charge that combines a FastCharge feature to get quickly juiced up again when the battery gets low. At only 17 grams, plus a two-layer nanocoating that protects from sweat and weather, they’re both durable enough yet light enough to wear for long workouts. BassFit Wireless also feature support for both aptX and AAC codecs for high-quality sound, plus a multi-function control for volume, music/media playback, call control, and Siri activation, along with a built-in mic. BassFit Wireles are available in either black or white for $130 on V-MODA.com, Amazon.com, and other retailers where V-Moda products are sold.

Apple hires Nokia exec to lead operations in India

Photo: Nokia

Amidst reports last summer that Apple lost three key executives in India, the company has now hired Nokia executive Ashish Chowdhary to be its head of India operations, according to a report by IANS (via 9to5Mac). The IANS report cited industry sources as noting that Chowdhary will come on board with Apple in Jan. 2019, which dovetails with a statement by Nokia to The Economic Times that he will be remaining with Nokia until the end of 2018, after which he will “take a leadership position in another company.” Chowdhary has served as the Chief Customer Operations Officer at Nokia Networks for the past 15 years, and the report notes that Apple was particularly interested in him due to his knowledge and experience in the smartphone and technology industry in India — a market that Apple has been struggling to gain ground in.

Withings resurrects its classic fitness tracker design with Pulse HR

Two months ago, Withings made its triumphant return to the digital health business as an independent company with Steel HR Sport, a multi-sport hybrid smartwatch focused on fitness and aesthetics that built upon the company’s 2014 Activité, and the company hasn’t slowed down since it gained its independence from Nokia earlier this year. Today, Withings has announced Pulse HR, an upgraded and reimagined version of its highly-acclaimed 2013 Pulse. Pulse HR is designed for users looking for a classic, standalone activity tracker rather than a full watch, and boosts a modernized design that incorporates a reinforced black polycarbonate surface within a 316L stainless steel casing. A black soft silicone wristband is included, that users can swap out for other color options if they prefer something more in line with their personal style. A built-in OLED display allows users to view time and date, heart rate, calories burned, progress toward activity goals, real-time workout information, and even smartphone notifications.

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