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Google brings Google Docs, Sheets to App Store

Google has announced that its Google Docs and Google Sheets apps are now available in the App Store. Both apps are free, and work offline.

 

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Google Docs is Google’s document app for creating, editing and collaborating, and Google Sheets is a similar app for spreadsheets. The company also announced that its presentation program, Google Slides, would soon be arriving as a mobile app, as well.

Hulu to allow free mobile viewing, launch new app

Hulu announced today that it would let viewers watch a selection of ad-supported TV shows for free on mobile devices starting this summer. Currently, Hulu only allows desktop users to stream full episodes for free, while mobile device users must have a paid Hulu Plus subscription to be able to watch anything at all. Additionally, Hulu will launch a redesigned Hulu Plus iPhone app this summer. According to The Verge, free episodes will reach Android users first before arriving on iOS.

Apple, Samsung make closing arguments in patent trial

Apple and Samsung have made their closing arguments in the latest patent trial between the two companies, with the jury starting deliberations expected to continue throughout today. While Apple is seeking $2.2 billion in damages for alleged patent infringement by Samsung, Samsung is only asking for $7 million from Apple. According to an Apple attorney, failing to award the Cupertino company a large sum for damages would validate Samsung’s “illegal strategy” of copying the iPhone, the Wall Street Journal reports. “We don’t think we owe Apple a nickel,” Samsung lawyer John Quinn said. “They’ll be dancing in the streets of Cupertino if you give them $100 million.”

Lawyers hammered home their key points on Tuesday, with Apple claiming Samsung had to copy the iPhone to make up ground in the smartphone market. “Where was Samsung before the iPhone? You know the answer to that one. They didn’t even have a smartphone,” Apple attorney Harold McElhinny said. Samsung claims it relied on developments by Google that were being developed before the iPhone’s debut.

Welcome to the new iLounge.com!

Today, we’ve launched an all-new version of the iLounge web site — seriously streamlined to improve as much of the user experience as possible. The biggest change you’ll notice is the replacement of our old top-of-page, ever-moving “randomizer” with a static collection of our most important links, one each for the iPhone, iPad, iPod/iTunes, Apple TV, and Mac, with a large link to the most noteworthy accessory we’ve recently covered. But there are lots of other changes, too.

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Near the top of each page, you’ll see an improved navigation bar, focused more squarely on the news, reviews, features, forums, and Mac coverage we’re highlighting. Hover over or touch the nav bar and you’ll see photographs and links within our site’s sections, enabling you to easily see what individual articles have inside.

Occupying the majority of our main page, you’ll also find an easily browsable stream of all of our latest content, sortable by News, First Looks, Reviews, Apps, Articles, and Giveaways if you only want to see one type of article at a given time. This column is bigger than ever before, so you can enjoy larger pictures and text before you click through to the article. We’ve also moved voting, contests, our newsletter signups, and deals into a box right next to the main column.

We’re still tweaking the new site, so don’t be surprised if you notice a little issue here or there. Enjoy the new iLounge!

Office for iPad adds AirPrint support

Microsoft has announced that Office for iPad now allows printing via AirPrint. All three Office for iPad apps — Word, Excel, and Powerpoint — have been updated to version 1.0.1, enabling users to print Word documents, Excel spreadsheets, and PowerPoint presentations with any AirPrint printer. The Powerpoint update also includes SmartGuides, which helps users easily align pictures, shapes, and text boxes. Excel has also added AutoFit to adjust multiple rows or columns at the same time.

Apps: Clear 1.4, Doozer Creek, Facebook Messenger 5.0 + What Do I Wear?

Clear ($5), the popular productivity app from Realmac Software, has updated to version 1.4. The update has introduced reminders for Clear — users can now set a date and time for each task within a list. Clear can sync the alerts across all devices. It’s also now possible to customize Clear’s sounds through in-app purchases. For $2, sci-fi or 8-bit sound effects can be added to the app. Clear+ users can get the sound packs for free.

 

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Doozer Creek is a new free app from The Jim Henson Company. If you’re unfamiliar with the characters, Doozers are the small green creatures from Fraggle Rock who love to work. And work they do in Doozer Creek, as kids build worlds on a blank play mat within the app. The interactive building app offers seven free play pieces with additional playsets available for in-app purchase.

Apple security hole allowed access to personal developer info

A recent security hole in Apple’s website allowed anyone to access personal information for all registered iOS, Mac, or Safari developers, 9to5Mac reports. The issue was reportedly discovered by developer Jesse Järvi, and 9to5Mac says that the hole was quietly patched Sunday night. A flaw in Apple’s internal Radar application allowed Järvi to access the information — which included cell phone numbers — from the full roster of developers. Information belonging to a number of high-ranking Apple executives was also accessible. Apple will reportedly be issuing a statement in the near future.

Re/Code conference to feature Apple’s Cue, Federighi

Re/Code has announced that its upcoming Code Conference will feature interviews with Apple executives Eddy Cue and Craig Federighi. Apple SVPs Cue and Federighi will speak on the conference’s second night, May 28. Last year, Apple CEO Tim Cook spoke at the conference’s predecessor of sorts, All Things D’s D11 conference, following a tradition of Apple CEO appearances. Cook remained mum on new products at the time. It’s unlikely that Cue or Federighi will reveal anything groundbreaking during the interview, but the report notes the two will talk about “a range of things” going on at Apple, “especially in the important mobile sector.”

Apple offers to replace faulty iPhone 5 sleep buttons

Apple is offering to replace faulty sleep/wake buttons on qualifying iPhone 5 units. The company has set up a website for the replacement process, noting that models manufactured through March 2013 may have an issue where the sleep/wake button stops working or works intermittently. Users with faulty buttons can type in their iPhone 5 serial numbers on the site to see if they qualify for replacements. The replacement program is already available in the U.S. and Canada; it will become available in other countries on Friday, May 2.

Additionally, 9to5Mac is reporting that customers who make a Genius Bar appointment for the issue have the option of trading in their device, which could net up to $350 — $80 more than what Apple is offering for non-affected devices. It’s noted that Apple employees “have been instructed not to present this option” unless a customer specifically asks about upgrading to a new phone.

New alleged iPhone 6 renderings include measurements

Newly leaked alleged iPhone 6 renderings posted on UkrainianiPhone.com include possible measurements for a new iPhone with a 4.7” screen. Though not the first renderings we’ve seen for the rumored phone, the new schematics claim the new iPhone will be 138 mm x 67 mm and 6 mm thick. According to our math, the numbers work out almost exactly to equal a 4.7” screen — and slightly reducing the bezels could easily hit that number right on the dot.

 

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The renderings appear to match past images in other ways, including rounded edges, a new power button location, and the disappearance of the 5s dual flash. A size comparison chart —included below — was also posted, comparing the iPhone 5 to the alleged iPhone 6.

iOS 7.1 code references iPad Touch ID

  • April 25, 2014
  • iPad,

A reference to the iPad family was reportedly found in iOS 7.1 code within Touch ID resources, prompting further speculation the touch sensor will be coming to new iterations of the iPad. The code was posted in a tweet by a French developer with the Twitter name @bp_unicorn. It’s been speculated for some time that the new iPads will have Touch ID — analyst Ming-Chi Kuo claimed new iPad Air and iPad mini devices would have Touch ID this year. Kuo also said the devices would both have an A8 processor and the new iPad Air will come with a 8MP camera. [via iDownloadBlog]

iLounge Game Spotlight: Third Eye Crime: Act 1

The stealth puzzlers just keep on coming, apparently. Following last week’s release of Square Enix’s stunning Hitman GO, Gameblyr has introduced Third Eye Crime: Act 1 ($3). Like Hitman GO, Third Eye Crime has a distinct design, with this game going for a noir look.

 

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Third Eye Crime lays the noir theme on thick from the get-go through an interactive comic strip scene before gameplay. Players control Rothko, a criminal who finds himself walking through various areas while picking up diamonds or other items and avoiding guards along the way. Rothko has limited telepathic abilities — hence the “third eye” in the title. Gamers can anticipate where the guards will go next. This allows Rothko, who isn’t exactly a speedster, to make his escape. If you run into a guard, you’ll have to restart the level.

Apple, others settle poaching antitrust suit

Apple, Google, Intel, and Adobe have agreed to settle an antitrust lawsuit regarding no-hire agreements, Reuters reports. Terms of the settlement were not disclosed. Former employees of the companies were reportedly seeking $9 billion in lost wages, alleging the companies agreed not to hire each other’s employees. The trial was scheduled to start in May.

Some iOS 6 users must upgrade to iOS 7 to fix FaceTime

A new Apple support document reveals that some iOS 6 users must upgrade to iOS 7 in order to get FaceTime to work properly. Those iOS 6 users who have seen FaceTime call issues pop up after April 16, 2014 may be affected by a bug “resulting from a device certificate that expired on that date.” The only course of action to fix FaceTime is to update to iOS 7. People using iOS 7.0.4 or later or iOS 6.1.6 won’t be affected by this issue. [via MacRumors]

Apps: Bonsai Slice, Bounsy, IMDb 4.2 + The Weather Channel 6.0

Playground Theory’s new Bonsai Slice ($3) has already gotten some press for its unique play mechanics. The game makes players move and swing their iPads around in their hands as if holding a sword. Onscreen, a swinging sword slashes through items to earn points and coins — sort of like Fruit Ninja, but with actual iPad motion, opposed to touchscreen swipes. Some parts of the game even require spinning around with your iPad in hands to slash at the correct items. You can also upgrade your sword by accumulating coins. It’s more fun to watch someone play the game than to play it yourself. First of all, there are way too many bombs to avoid. They do turn into coins, but instead of getting to swing freely, you’re trying to miss the bombs, necessitating more subtle movements, which isn’t as fun. But even those movements can be annoying — you’re forced to watch the items pop up, then physically move your iPad, all while trying to keep your eyes on the screen. It’s a prime recipe for motion sickness.

 

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Bounsy is a new game from karzy. An iOS exclusive, Bounsy is a physics-based game that has players using their fingers to guide a stream of balls to a set target. There are plenty of great physics-based games in the App Store by now, so it’s become tougher to stand out. Bounsy’s issue — which plagues plenty of touchscreen games — is that your fingers and hands cover up too much of the screen. This causes the gameplay to feel a bit more frustrating than it should be, but it might bother some more than others. If you’re looking for another physics game, Bounsy is free to play, and the full version costs $1.

Cook: New products ‘closer,’ mobile payments ‘really interesting’

Apple CEO Tim Cook again hinted at upcoming new products without revealing anything concrete in an interview with the Wall Street Journal. He said the company’s strong fiscal quarter might silence critics, while adding, “Maybe it will take some new products.” In the interview, Cook again stressed the importance of getting things right — not being first. “I feel great about what we’ve got coming. Really great and it’s closer than it’s ever been,” he said.

Cook also called mobile payments “really interesting,” noting that most iTunes accounts — which now number about 800 million in total — have credit cards attached. He said: “We already have people using Touch ID to buy things across our store, so it’s an area of interest to us. And it’s an area where nobody has figured it out yet. I realize that there are some companies playing in it, but you still have a wallet in your back pocket and I do too which probably means it hasn’t been figured out just yet.”

 

Prong debuts Prong PWR Case for iPhone 5/5s

Prong has introduced its Prong PWR Case ($80), a new iPhone 5/5s case with an integrated wall plug and detachable backup battery. The detachable battery charges using the integrated plug, while the iPhone remains separate in its own protective bumper. As in Prong’s PocketPlug iPhone 5 Case + Charger, the plug on the Prong PWR Case retracts by folding into the case.

 

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The Prong PWR Case also comes with a micro USB port and cable. Prong’s new case comes in four colors and is set to ship this summer. It’s currently available for preorder at a reduced price of $65.

Notes from Apple’s Q2 2014 earnings call

Apple’s conference call after the company’s reported Q2 2014 earnings started with CEO Tim Cook calling the results “very strong.” The results were Apple’s “strongest non-holiday quarter ever,” Cook said.

Cook pointed out that iPhone sales were strong in the quarter. Apple’s smartphone market share is now 55 percent in Japan. There are now 800 million iTunes accounts, “most of them with credit cards,” Cook noted. iPad sales were at high end of Apple’s expectations, though below analyst explanations — Cook spoke about why there was a difference between the two.

Apple announces 7:1 stock split, increased share buyback, dividends

Apple today announced a seven-for-one stock split, with shareholders receiving six new shares for every one they own at the close of business on June 2, 2014. This is the first split since 2005. The company’s share repurchase program will be increasing from $60 billion to $90 billion, and has raised its dividend to percent%. This puts it at $3.20 per common share, payable on May 15, 2014.

Apple Q2 2014: 43.7M iPhones, 16.3M iPads, 2.7M iPods

Apple reported its second quarter 2014 financial results today, as the company sold 43.7 million iPhones, 16.3 million iPads, and 2.7 million iPods. The company also reported $45.6 billion in quarterly revenue, and a quarterly net profit of $10.2 billion. Revenue is down from the record of Q1 2014, but up from Q2 2013. Gross margin was 39.6 percent in Q2 2014, compared to 37.5 percent in the year-ago quarter.

For its fiscal third quarter, Apple is providing guidance of revenue between $36 billion and $38 billion, and gross margin between 37 percent and 38 percent. Apple’s conference call on the results will take place at 5 p.m. EST and can be heard on the company’s investor website.

“We’re very proud of our quarterly results, especially our strong iPhone sales and record revenue from services,” Apple CEO Tim Cook said. “We’re eagerly looking forward to introducing more new products and services that only Apple could bring to market.”

“We generated $13.5 billion in cash flow from operations and returned almost $21 billion in cash to shareholders through dividends and share repurchases during the March quarter,” Apple CFO Peter Oppenheimer said. “That brings cumulative payments under our capital return program to $66 billion.”

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