Apple has hired two top Google satellite executives for a new hardware team that it is creating, Bloomberg reports. Citing people familiar with the matter, the report notes that Apple has recently hired John Fenwick former lead of Google’s spacecraft operations, and Michael Trela, who headed up satellite engineering at Google. Both now allegedly report to Greg Duffy, the Dropcam cofounder who joined Apple in January. Speculation on Duffy’s hire earlier this year suggested that he was “likely to be leading a special project at Apple that is operating like a startup within the company” but no further details were available at the time as to what such a project would be; the two most recent hires, however, suggest that Apple is pursuing another entirely new line of research and development.
In today’s iLounge Deal, you can get the FRESHeBUDS Pro Magnetic Bluetooth Earbuds for only $29.95 — that’s 75% off the regular price. Designed to be sweat and water resistant, these earbuds automatically pair to your iPhone when pulled apart so there are no complicated setup procedures, and provide a smooth fit and unrivalled sound quality in their size. The built-in rechargeable battery gives you up to 10 hours of playtime, and you can fully charge them back up in just 90 minutes.
If you’ve got kids at home with their own iPad or iPod touch, it won’t be long before they figure out that they can have a chat with Siri, and unfortunately while Siri’s voice recognition is pretty good, it can’t always keep up with the developing language skills of a young child. So it’s not surprising that sometimes Siri won’t quite be able to accurately transcribe what they’re trying to say, but sometimes Siri can get it embarrassingly wrong, throwing up words that you might not be ready to explain the meaning of to your kids.
Fortunately, there’s an option tucked away inside the Restrictions settings found on every iOS device (and even the Apple TV) that can tell Siri to filter out any explicit language it hears. You can find it in the iOS Settings app, under General, Restrictions. By default, this option is switched on, meaning Siri allows for explicit language in queries (although she will still scold you for using it sometimes). Turning this option off won’t prevent Siri from responding to explicit language queries, but it will censor any inappropriate words that it transcribes. A second option in this screen also allows you to prevent Siri from going out and searching the web — probably also a good idea if you want to prevent Siri from inadvertently bringing up inappropriate websites when it misunderstands a search request.…
X-Doria’s taken its classic Defense Lux case in a stylish new direction with its new Wooden Line, taking the same basic design of the Lux cases and backing them with a real wood finish. It adds a nice touch of old-world class to an already nice case design, and it’s worth mentioning that X-Doria’s done a good thing with the pricing on the entire Defense Lux line of cases since we first reviewed the iPhone 6 and 6s versions; the basic cases now sell for a considerably lower price of $35, with a $5 premium added onto the wood versions. Lux Wood is available in two colour options — bamboo with a silver metal frame and walnut with a black metal frame.
Nike has unveiled Apple Watch NikeLab, a new limited edition version of the Apple Watch Nike+ that debuted last fall. The new neutral-toned Apple Watch is essentially just a design change, pairing up a space grey Apple Watch Series 2 with a black and white sports band, and otherwise continues to include the same features of the other Nike+ models, integrating the Nike+ Run Club app with the standard Apple Watch hardware and watchOS 3. The new model is expected to be available on April 27 via nike.com, at NikeLab stores, and at an Apple Tokyo pop-up store in Isetan. Notably, the limited edition model will not otherwise be sold directly by Apple, either online or at retail. Pricing has not been announced.
Only hours after Prince’s “Deliverance” went live on Apple Music, the track now appears to have been pulled from not only Apple Music, but several other streaming services as well, AppleInsider reports. The single track debuted early yesterday morning as the title track to Prince’s upcoming album, scheduled to be released on Friday, but later disappeared for unknown reasons. Reports speculate that the removal was likely in response to a contractual dispute between Prince’s estate and sound engineer George Ian Boxill, who co-wrote and co-produced all of the tracks, as to the rights to publish the album independently. There appears to be no judicial order for the removal, suggesting that the retraction was taken as a precautionary measure.
Apple has released its 2017 Environmental Responsibility Report, outlining details throughout fiscal year 2016 on the company’s efforts in making all of its operations more eco-friendly. In addition to Apple’s continued push toward completely renewable energy sources, this year’s report highlights a new ambitious area of environmental focus for the company — to end reliance on the mining of finite resources altogether in favour of using only renewable resources and recycled materials.
Today in iLounge Deals, you can pick up the Kodak HD WiFi Pet Monitor for only $72.99 — that’s 18% off the regular price. This security camera lets you be in two places at once, keeping an eye on your fuzzy friends (or anything else at home) in real-time while you’re away. Simply place the camera where you want, download the free iSecurity+ app, and you can instantly start streaming live video to your iPhone. You can store a full day’s worth of video in the cloud for free, and two-way communication lets you talk to your pets as well. Kodak’s proprietary pet detection system can also notify you when something is happening, and a built-in Wi-Fi repeater lets you also extend your existing wireless network.
iDevices was one of the first manufacturers to get on board with Apple's HomeKit ecosystem, with the iDevices Switch outlet announced two years ago at CES 2015. The company later followed that up with the inexpensive HomeKit-enabled Thermostat and Socket light bulb adapter, along with Outdoor Switch, the first weatherproof HomeKit power outlet designed for use in outdoor environments. With its new Wall Outlet, iDevices goes back to its roots, essentially taking its expertise from Switch and building it into a standard installable North American wall outlet.