Google has released an update to its native Google Voice app for the iPhone adding support for multi-recipient texting and integration for Sprint iPhone users. The latest update now allows users to send text messages to multiple recipients via the Google Voice service along with autocompletion when entering contact names. For Sprint iPhone users who have integrated their Sprint service with Google Voice the app also now sends all calls through to the native iOS dialer allowing calls to be more quickly and easily completed. The update also adds a multi-line text entry field with character count and one-touch copy and paste on the dial pad screen. Google Voice is available from the App Store as a free download.
Amazon has released an update to its Kindle app for iOS devices adding magazine support for iPad users and document support for all iOS devices. Kindle 2.9 on the iPad now introduces a new interface for reading magazines on the device, providing iPad users with access to Amazon’s catalog of over 400 magazines and newspapers for the Kindle Fire, displayed in full colour pages. Users can purchase single issues or subscribe to magazines and newspapers and have them wirelessly delivered to the Kindle app on the iPad. The iPad version also provides a new layout for reading print replica textbooks that preserves the original formatting of the actual print editions along with support for notes and highlights, zoom and pan and a linked table of contents.
The latest Kindle app update also now allows all iOS devices to receive e-mailed documents in the same manner as the Kindle devices and introduces the ability to open PDFs from Mail, Safari and other supported iOS apps or sync PDF documents to and from the Kindle app over USB via iTunes File Sharing. The integrated Kindle PDF reader provides the PDF table of contents and thumbnail navigation to allow users to quickly navigate through PDF documents. Kindle 2.9 is a universal app and is available from the App Store as a free download.
Apple has accused Samsung of patent infringement in Australia, reports Bloomberg. According to the report, Apple claims that Samsung’s cases for its Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet and various phones infringe at least 10 of its patents. Apple has issued a notice of infringement to Samsung, and will file a statement of claim, Apple’s lawyer Stephen Burley revealed at a hearing in Sydney. During the hearing, Apple argued that a scheduled trial on Samsung’s claims that the Apple’s 3G products infringe Samsung’s patents should be delayed. “This matter can’t be ready in time for March,” Burley said. “It’d be unfair to Apple if the case were to be hurried on.” Apple and Samsung are currently involved in more than 30 different lawsuits against one another. [via MDN]
Apple is now offering free next-day shipping on many online orders in the United States. According to Apple’s holiday shipping page, non-engraved iPads and iPods, the iPhone 4, iPhone 3GS, non-customized and popular iMac configurations, and the Apple TV can all be ordered today for arrival by December 24, thanks to the free next day shipping offer. For all other products, customers are advised to check their cart for expected delivery dates.
This week’s featured photo is from our iPads Around the World gallery, and shows a black iPad 2 in front of the Maison du Roi in the Grand Place of Brussels, Belgium. To share your photos and to be considered for our Photo of the Week, you simply need to submit your own photo to one of our galleries. So get out there, take some pictures featuring your favorite iPod, iPad, or iPhone and maybe your submission will be our next Photo of the Week!
The U.S. International Trade Commission earlier this week ruled that HTC is violating an Apple patent, and ordered an import ban on some of the former’s products. AllThingsD reports that the Commission found HTC to infringe on two claims related to an Apple patent, a ruling that in some ways favored HTC, as an earlier ruling had the company infringing upon two Apple patents. “While disappointed that a finding of violation was still found on two claims of the ’647 patent, we are well prepared for this decision, and our designers have created alternate solutions for the ’647 patent,” HTC said. The ban will take effect April 19 of next year, giving HTC time to demonstrate that it has avoided infringement in its products.
Evernote has released an update to its universal iOS application adding the ability to manage notebook sharing from directly within the app. With the latest version users can now share existing notebooks either as public notebooks or only with a selected group of individuals and can manage the sharing settings for notebooks previously shared from the desktop or web clients. Evernote Premium subscribers can also grant users read/write access to edit the content of shared notebooks. When sharing notebooks with specific individuals users can select e-mail address from their iOS contacts or can send out links to publicly shared notebooks via Twitter and Facebook from directly within the app. The latest update also improves access to offline notebooks for Premium users on the iPhone by grouping them into their own category at the top of the notebook listings. Evernote 4.1.7 is available from the App Store as a free download.
Apple has launched a new Complete My Season Pass feature on the iTunes Store, according to a Mac Rumors report. Similar to the Complete My Album feature, the Complete My Season Pass feature discounts the price of full TV show seasons by the amount of any individual episodes previously purchased, allowing users to buy the entire season without paying a penalty for buying individual episodes. It appears that the feature may only be live for certain shows, however, as some older shows no longer available via Season Pass do not show the option.
Apple executives have recently discussed their vision for the future of TV with media executives at several large companies, according to a new report. Citing people familiar with the matter, the Wall Street Journal reports that the executives, including Senior Vice President of Internet Software and Services Eddy Cue, outlined new ways Apple could recognize users across various devices, and described potential TV technology that would respond to users’ voices and movements. The report reiterates prior rumors that Apple is working on a TV set that relies on wireless streaming technology to access content, which would use a version of AirPlay to integrate with iPhones and iPads, and might leverage an iCloud-based DVR service which would allow users to watch shows they have saved across different devices. According to the report, Apple’s talks with the media companies have thus far been “vague”, with no proposals made in regards to licensing.
An explosion at a Shanghai factory owned by a subsidiary of Apple manufacturing partner Pegatron has left 61 workers injured and may threaten to constrain iPad 2 supplies for next quarter. Reuters reports that the blast, which occurred at a factory belonging to Riteng Computer Accessory Co., did not cause a fire, but did injure many, with 23 of the injured requiring hospitalization. According to the report, the plant had not started operations yet, but was expected to produce back panel parts for the iPad 2, and if the safety concerns can’t be overcome quickly, Apple’s supply chain for next quarter could be affected. “Our hearts go out to the people who were hurt in Songjiang,” said Apple spokeswoman Carolyn Wu. “We are working closely with Pegatron to understand the cause of this accident”.
Apple has started to air its latest TV advertisement for the iPhone 4S. Entitled “Santa”, the 30-second spot shows Santa Claus interacting with Siri to get directions, find out the weather, find emails, read text messages, and keep track of his 3.7 billion appointments. The ad is available for viewing on Apple’s website or in embedded form below.
Facebook has released an update to its iOS application adding support for its new timeline feature on the iPhone and iPod touch. With Facebook 4.1 users can now see the mobile-optimized timeline view of user profiles that have switched to the new Timeline format. The latest update also adds access to friend lists, subscribers and subscriptions and improves photo viewing, uploading and commenting. The Mobile Timeline feature has not yet been added to the iPad interface, the release notes indicate that another update for iPad support is coming soon. Facebook 4.1 is available from the App Store as a free download.
Just a friendly reminder to accessory and application developers that may want to submit their latest creations for our 2012 Best of Show Awards consideration: the deadline for submissions is coming up next week on December 23. Our annual Awards honor the very best new Apple-related products debuted at CES, and are limited in number; they are open solely to official exhibitors with booths at the Las Vegas Convention Center. For more information, continue reading.
Apple has launched the iPhone 4S in over 20 new countries. According to Mac Rumors, the handset made its debut in Bahrain, Brazil, Chile, Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Kuwait, Malaysia, Morocco, Peru, the Philippines, Qatar, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Taiwan, Thailand, Tunisia, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, and Vietnam. Apple’s previously stated goal was to have the iPhone 4S available on 100 carriers in 70 countries by the end of the year, a goal it appears that it will reach, as the handset is now available in over 65 countries.
Samsung is now manufacturing A5 processors—which are included in the iPhone 4S and iPad 2—in a Texas facility. Citing people familiar with the operation, Reuters reports that the facility, located in Austin, is roughly 1.6 million square feet in size, and began supplying A5 chips to Apple earlier this year, hitting full production in December. According to the report, the A5 is built in a newly constructed $3.6 billion non-memory chip production line; Samsung also produces NAND flash chips in the facility.
A silent, server-side update to the Apple TV has added on-device TV show purchasing to the set-top box in several countries. Engadget reports that Apple TV users in Canada, Australia, and the U.K. are now able to purchase TV shows on the device, and stream any past TV show purchases directly from iCloud to the Apple TV. The same functionality was rolled out to Apple TV units in the U.S. earlier this year.
Update: The TV Shows menu has since disappeared on Apple TV units set to access the Canadian, Australian, and U.K. stores; it is unclear whether this morning’s appearance was a planned rollout that has been pulled due to a technical issue, a premature launch, or something else entirely.
Update x2, December 16: Apple officially rolled out the feature last night to various international locales.
Apple has started to roll out its iTunes Match cloud music service internationally. Available since early November in the U.S. and launched earlier this week in Brazil, links to activate the service have appeared on the front page of the iTunes Store in Australia, Canada, France, Ireland, Mexico, Spain, and the United Kingdom, and possibly in other countries. iTunes Match is a $25/year service that matches tracks in a user’s iTunes library with tracks stored on the company’s iTunes Store servers, uploading any tracks it can’t match, and offering users full access to all their music — up to 25,000 tracks — from any of their devices. [via Mac Rumors]
Apple today released Apple TV Software Update 4.4.4, the latest update for its second-generation set-top box. Apple has yet to update its Support page with details on 4.4.4, so it remains unclear what—if any—improvements or changes the update offers. Apple TV Software Update 4.4.4 is available now via the Update Software option in the device’s General Settings menu.
Update: According to Apple, the update “includes general performance and stability improvements, including a fix for an issue that displayed an error when playing some video content.”
In commemoration of the 10th anniversary of Grand Theft Auto III, Rockstar Games has released an iOS version of the highly acclaimed console and PC title. Grand Theft Auto 3 for iOS takes players back into the dark and seedy underworld of Liberty City, with a massive and diverse open world that players can explore at will and a wide variety of characters to interact with in an immersive storyline. The game includes redesigned HD graphics designed to take full advantage of the latest iOS device capabilities alongside high-quality voice acting and touch-screen optimized controls. Grand Theft Auto 3 requires an iPhone 4/4S, iPad 2 or fourth-generation iPod touch running iOS 4.3 or later and is available from the App Store for $5.
Google has released an update to its native Gmail app for iOS adding several new features including support for nested labels, mobile signatures and vacation messages, and a new “scribbles” feature. With Gmail 1.1 nested labels now appear laid out properly in the left-hand labels view and users can configure Mobile Signature and Vacation Responder settings directly from their device by clicking on a small gear settings icon at the top of the menu view. The update also adds a new notification sound for iOS 5 devices to help users distinguish Gmail notifications from other iOS notifications. The update also adds a new feature dubbed “scribbles” that allows users to open up a canvas to draw a message using the touchscreen that will be attached to an e-mail. Scribbles provides multiple colours, brush sizes, lines, erasers and spray paint and can also be accessed from the HTML5 Gmail web app. Gmail 1.1 is available from the App Store as a free download.