The other big thing at the Apple announcement this morning was mobile payments. During his presentation, Tim Cook boasts that the new Apple Pay service, that’s integrated into the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, “will forever change the way we buy”, but does it really?
Mobile payments have been slow to catch on. Despite the massive push from banks, credit card companies and even some of the biggest tech brands in the world, adoption has been slow. Many are saying Apple’s mobile pay solution will be the catalyst the industry needs for mass adoption but we’re not convinced.
Using NFC, Apple Pay is designed to allow users to make a purchase — for merchandise, tickets, meals, etc. — by simply waving their iPhone in front of a scanner. The advantage of Apple Pay, the company claims, is faster payments, more convenience and better security. Apple claims any transaction made using Apple Pay is between the user, the merchant and the bank, Apple doesn’t have access to the information nor does it share that information with anyone else. To enter a credit card information, you simply take a picture of you card using your iPhone and Apple Pay will do the rest. At launch, the Apple Pay service will work with cards issued in the US at merchants in the US as well. Apple did not say when or if the service will be available in other countries.
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Apple has finally announced its latest iPhones and one of the world’s most successful technology company is betting on big displays to return to dominance in the smartphone market.
The newly introduced iPhones — the relatively large iPhone 6 and, larger still, iPhone 6 Plus — will come in two sizes, both will be significantly larger that their predecessor, the 4-inch iPhone 5S.
The iPhone 6 features a 4.7-inch 720p (1334×750 pixels, 326ppi) LCD IPS display while the iPhone 6 Plus gets a 5.5-inch 1080p (1920×1080 pixels, 401ppi) display and that seems to be the biggest differences between the two models. Under the hood is a new A8 64-bit processor running at an unspecified clock speed and RAM configuration. Apple claims the new A8 processor is 25% faster than the A7 in the iPhone 5S and offers a 50% improvement in graphics performance. The new chips also has a new motion engine that is coupled with a barometer to allow the new iPhones to accurately detect motion and distinguish between running and cycling. The barometer can also detect changes in elevation allowing it to detect when you’re climbing up stairs, which is cool but not really a big deal in day-to-day use.
To make the most out of the increased screen space Apple has introduced a few new features in iOS. For the first time ever, you get support for landscape mode and split display in certain apps like stocks and email but this feature is only available on the iPhone 6 Plus. The keyboard has been tweaked to take advantage of the display area, too, with additional buttons and features. To accommodate for the larger screen, there’s also a new gesture called “Reachability”, where double tap the home button to collapse the display allowing your fingers to reach things at the top of the display without having to readjust your hand.
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UPDATE: HTC Butterfly 2 will be officially launched in Malaysia on 19th September.
The waterproof HTC Butterfly 2 with IP57 rating is now officially available in Malaysia. It follows the footsteps of its former Butterfly with a glossy polycarbonate body and underneath it shares very similar hardware with its current HTC One M8 and One E8 models.
The iPhone 5S is now priced at RM1,999 for its 16GB, which is RM400 off its previous price while its 32GB capacity gets a massive RM550 cut. Meanwhile its colourful iPhone 5C line up has been revised a single 8GB option that’s priced at RM1,499. This makes the iPhone 5C 8GB their official entry-level model in Malaysia.
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This little gadget nearly stole the show. The watch is real. It’s not called the iWatch, but the Apple Watch. Tim Cook says it’s the next chapter in Apple history. It’s a “comprehensive health and fitness device.” The key idea is that Apple is reinventing input mechanics, using a Digital Crown on the Watch that scrolls, zoom, and navigate the user interface without blocking the display.
Apple has designed six different straps and a special mechanism for swapping them around. Like a traditional His and Hers watch set, the Apple Watch will come in two different size (38mm and 42mm) and three different finishes, and it will be powered by means of wireless charging that is inductive, similar to Apple’s MagSafe chargers for the MacBook. So far they have yet to reveal info on its battery life and whether or not it is water resistant.
The iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus are now official with a 4.7″ and 5.5″ display. Although they have expanded beyond its former 4.0″ screen size on the iPhone 5/5S, the new iPhone models are actually thinner at 6.9mm (iPhone 6) and 7.1mm (iPhone 6 Plus) respectively.
Considering the announcement came right after last week’s IFA 2014, we have compared the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus hardware specs and dimensions with other flagship devices including the new Samsung Galaxy Note 4, Galaxy Note Edge, Galaxy Alpha, Sony Xperia Z3, Huawei Ascend Mate 7 and other notable flagship smart phones in the market today.
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If you’re planning to get the iPhone 6 or even the iPhone 6 Plus get ready to pay through your nose and perhaps sell an organ or two. Being in the list of countries that will be receiving the first wave, the online Apple Store in Singapore has listed the prices of the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, and they are expensive.
The iPhone 6 starts from SG$988 which is about RM2,500 while the iPhone 6 Plus starts from SG$1,148 or about RM2,900. If you want more storage, expect to pay even more. For the iPhone 6, the 64GB variant will cost you SG$1,148 and the 128GB version is SG$1,288, that’s RM2,900 and RM3,270 respectively! The bigger iPhone 6 Plus is even more expensive still with the 64GB version priced at SG$1,288 (RM3,270) and the 128GB a whopping SG$1,448 (RM3,770)! You can get a really good laptop for that kind of money.
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During the announcement of the latest iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, Apple mentioned that the latest iOS 8 will be rolled out starting next Wednesday 17th September. This offers quite a significant update over the current iOS 7.1.2.
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Tomorrow, Apple CEO Tim Cook is expected to announce the iPhone 6. Best guesses are that this newest and shiniest of iGadgets may go on sale in 10 days, on September 19th. This has not stopped Brian Ceballo and Joseph Cruz from setting up the first seats in the queue to get the iPhone 6 at Apple flagship store on Fifth Avenue, New York City. According to Ceballo, he and Cruz “wanted to beat the record, which had been 18 days.”
Although they may appear to be the ultimate Apple fanboys, Ceballo and Cruz are enterprising workers who queue for sponsors. By lining up for days on end over the past five years, the pair have earned USD7,000 (RM22,245) in addition to building a large social media following among the Apple fanboy community. This year Ceballo and Cruz are being sponsored by BuyBackWorld, an electronics reseller.
Now we’re reporting that Ceballo and Cruz were the first to set up seats outside Apple’s Fifth Avenue store but they are not the first in the queue. They sold their places to Jason and Moon Ray for USD2,500 (RM7,945). The Rays are being sponsored by VideoMedicine, a telemedicine app that allows patients to video chat with doctors.
Robert Samuel, founder and owner of S.O.L.D. (Same Ole Line Dudes), a professional line-waiting service—this actually exists?!?—says that his company already has seven orders for the iPhone 6. S.O.L.D. charges customersUSD25 (RM80) for the first hour of queuing and USD10 (RM32) for each additional half-hour. The queue for the iPhone 5S was 19 hours and customers paid USD385 (RM1,223) for someone to wait in line on their behalf.
This sweet madness has jumped the Pond and Bonnie Carr has pitched her blue tent outside Apple’s Regent Street store in London. Carr is being sponsored by TaskRabbit, an app-based service that lets users outsource small jobs and tasks.
Like Ceballo and Cruz, Carr isn’t at the head of the queue. An unidentified Hungarian man in a green tent has that spot although Carr believes he will sell his place in line as the retail launch of the iPhone 6 draws closer.
Whatever you may think about what they’re doing, you gotta love the crazies. They make us smile.