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Apple iPad Mini Announcement – LIVE BLOG

Welcome to the Fly Digital live blog of the Apple announcement on October 24th (October 23rd US) 2012. All times are Aus EDST.

4.01am: Tim Cook has just made his way onto the stage.

4.02am: We’re told the iPhone 5 was the fastest selling phone in history. Apple have made a video to back this up with lots of happy customers queueing at the Apple store in New York.

4.07am: There were 200million downloads of iOS6 in the first month (wow).

4.08am: 300 Billion messages have been sent via iMessage. That’s 28,000 per second. People don’t like calling each other any more.

4.10pm: 35 Billion apps have been downloaded from the App store representing a payout of 6.5 Billion dollars to developers.

4.15am: Welcome Phil Schiller to the stage to talk about some new hardware.

4.17am: The MacBook Pro is the best selling Mac machine (never knew that), and a new 13″ version is being released today.

4.21am: 7 hour battery life, retina display, lightning connector, power nap. The 2.5GHz dual-core i5 8GB RAM, 128GB flash version starts from $1699 (US).

4.26am: The first mention of “mini” … but it’s the new Mac Mini. Phil cracks a joke “you knew there’d be mention of something ‘mini’ in this presentation right?”.

4.29am: There’s a new iMac, the 8th generation of the flagship computer for Apple. Edge to edge glass, far thinner casing (5mm thick). Now that’s one thin desktop computer. Looks very sexy.

4.34am: The new iMac is 8lb lighter than the previous version, up to 768GB flash drive, up to 3TB HDD, Intel Quad Core i5 or i7, 21.5″ and 27″ versions.

4.36am: The iMac’s new Fusion Drive is a hybrid drive to enable faster access of data. Mountain Lion and base OSX apps are preloaded onto Fusion Drive if you choose that option. Claims to open files over 3x faster than standard HDD.

4.39am: 21.5″ iMac, 2.7GHz quad-core i5 starts at $1299. 27″, 2.9GHz starts at $1799, ships in December. Fly Digital will be getting a new present for Christmas methinks…

4.40am: And Tim Cook is back on stage, “and next I’d like to talk about iPad”.

4.40am: 100 Millionth iPad was sold last month (that’s over 2.5 years).

4.41am: iPad accounts for 91% of web traffic from Tablets. “There’s a simple reason for this”, says Tim Cook: “people love their iPads”. That got a chuckle from the audience.

4.45am: iBooks based textbooks are being used in over 2,500 schools in the US.

4.47am: And Phil Schiller is back on stage to talk more about iPad.

4.48am: The new 4th gen iPad has: A6X processor, 10-hour battery life, FaceTime HD camera, Expanded LTE (Telstra & Optus logos appeared on screen there), 2x faster Wi-Fi, lightning connector (with lightning to USB and SD connector options), black/white, 16GB Wi-Fi from $499, 16GB Wi-Fi and 4G from $629.

4.51am: The first mention of iPad Mini. The audience claps.

4.53am: The new iPad Mini is 7.2mm thick with a (7.9-inch diagonal) display. All software created for 3rd gen iPad works on iPad Mini.

4.59am: A comparison between the iPad and a “popular Android tablet” (Nexus 7) shows the iPad with a larger screen and larger area for content when browsing web pages.

5.01am: “Every inch an iPad” seems to be the new marketing line.

5.04am: We’re now watching a video on how the iPad Mini was conceived. Apple are doing a good job of reminding us this is a “condensed” iPad and a whole new device, and not just a “smaller” iPad.

5.07am: 16GB Wi-Fi version start at $329 (US) $369 (AUS). Pre-order October 26th. Wi-Fi ships November 2nd for Australia (available at 8:00 a.m in store).

5.09am: The new iPad Mini ad is pretty cute – two people playing “chopsticks” on a piano app side by side, iPad 3 on the left, iPad Mini on the right. Clever. That’s Phil’s spot finished, and Tim Cook is back.

5.12am: “This has been a truly prolific year of innovation for Apple”. Tim Cook thanks his teams for their work this year.

5.13am: And we’re done. Tim Cook thanks everyone for attending and the presentation finishes.

5.14am: www.apple.com is updated with the new iPad Mini

iPad Mini – Apple have got “a little more to show you”

Barely weeks since the iOS6 and iPhone5 announcements Apple are once again causing ripples across the Internet with more rumours of new products.

This time it’s the much anticipated iPad Mini – rumoured to be a 7.5-inch device to go head to head with Amazon’s Kindle Fire. The current iPad has a 9.7-inch screen size.

Apple are hosting an event next week (23rd in the US, 24th early morning here in Australia) and the iPad Mini is widely expected to feature. The invitation read: “We’ve got a little more to show you”.

It could have a price point around the $250-$300 mark.

Whatever gets announced we’ll let you know about it here.

iPad kiosks, Google Wallet, QR codes & free wifi – mobile tech in New York

American retail outlets are really embracing new mobile technologies and apps to help drive business and raise awareness of their products.

Here are some of the highlights from a stroll around the lower West side of Manhattan (mainly Chelsea, Meatpackers and West Village).

Innovative iPad kiosk housing

At Fly Digital we’ve created iOS apps for clients looking to use an iPad as a kiosk solution. However we’re often asked how to restrict access to the home and lock buttons to prevent customers from clicking out of the app.

Professionally made kiosk housings are usually the answer such as the great ones made by Lilitab (http://www.lilitab.com/).

But clothing store ‘All Saints’ created their own clever way of achieving the same thing with reclaimed wood, metal and a couple of butterfly screws.

A really clever idea and very on brand for this retail outlet.

QR codes are everywhere

They really are EVERYWHERE. Shop windows, posters, digital signage, check-in signs at the airport, even on bananas (no kidding), you can’t get away from QR codes here in the USA.

Like Australia, Near Field Communication (NFC) still isn’t being widely used in the USA to transfer data onto customers phones despite the growing number of devices with the required hardware. So for the moment QR is still the most popular method.

Pictured here is a QR code that links to a video of the New York Yankees seen underneath a poster in the headquarters of mlb.com in Chelsea Market.

Google wallet is starting to appear

Retailers accepting Google Wallet as a payment method are starting to advertise with stickers in their windows.

Pictured here is the signage at a fruit and veg store in Chelsea Markets.

I tweeted this earlier and the friendly team at Duane Reade (@duanereade) let me know they are also taking Google Wallet for micro-payments in their stores.

Funny free wifi login messages

Free wifi is offered in certain retail outlets so if your partner is taking longer to select an item than you would ideally like and you don’t have a 3/4G account you can at least check what’s happening on Twitter.

Based on my short research exercise I’d say around 30-40% of the shops I was in today offered a free wifi service. Some were simply an open wifi network under the store name, but some did require acceptance of a fair-use policy.

I took this screenshot of my favourite – again at Chelsea Market – showing that you don’t have to take a serious message too seriously. I love what they’ve done here.

More updates to follow as I find more around the city. Follow us on twitter (@fly_digital) for real-time updates, follow this blog or sign up to our newsletter for fortnightly roundups.

ACCC claim Apple’s “4G” is misleading for the New iPad

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) are today making a claim in the Federal Court for orders against Apple for promoting the new iPad as a 4G device.

The new iPad cannot run on any of the existing 4G networks in Australia due to the differences in frequency bands between here and the USA. But many consumers may not be aware of this fact and are possibly being swayed by the 4G label thinking “it must be faster than a 3G one”.

The same frequency mismatches occur in Europe and the European Commission may also be about to make similar claims on the use of 4G in Apple’s marketing.

The hearing is at 9.30am local time in Melbourne, Australia.

Apple’s new iPad, was it just a big letdown?

Like many others I was glued to my screens this morning (Australia time) watching Tim Cook announce the new iPad. But at the end of the presentation after we’d all signed out of twitter and submitted our final blog posts I couldn’t help feel a sense of anti-climax about the whole thing.

Why was that?

It wasn’t anything related to the product. I mean the new Retina Display, 5MP HD video camera, voice-to-text, A5X chip and everything else the tablet contains is awesome. It truly is a world leader and the very definition of innovation.

But it lead me to wonder are we just getting a little used to these sort of things?

Remember when Steve Jobs proclaimed “one more thing…” and pulled the iPod out of his pocket? Who wasn’t left speechless at that moment?

So why are we left just a little unfulfilled when the same company is presenting by far the most technologically advanced personal tablet product we’ve ever seen? Is it all of the rumor mongering and guesswork that preceded the announcement across the wealth of social media networks? Or are we just so used to getting treated to features that blow our minds again and again that we’re starting to get a little bit spoilt nowadays?

Whatever caused it, I can’t help but feel we’re entering a phase where there’s no such thing as a true “surprise” in digital technology, just a continuous series of well executed ideas that will do very well but somehow lack the “wow” factor of a few year’s ago.

Saying all that, I can t wait to get my hands on a new iPad, just maybe this time I’ll order it online rather than lining up outside the Apple store at midnight.

The New Apple iPad – view photos & features

It’s finally here. Simply called “The New iPad”, the 3rd generation of Apple’s tablet has been announced by CEO Tim Cook this morning.

The iPad is a phenomenal business case. 15.4 million units were shipped last quarter – more than any PC maker sold of their PC’s. Over 200,000 apps that have been custom made for iPad are now available in the iTunes store.

The new iPad comes with the following features:

  • Retina display – with a resolution of 264 pixels per inch and a 44% greater saturation than iPad2 Apple are calling this “the best mobile display ever”
  • 5 Mexapixel camera with image stabilization, autofocus and exposure lock plus auto face detection capable of recording full HD video
  • Voice-to-text
  • High-speed 4G LTE (long tem evolution) supported by Verizon and AT&T in the US (and hopefully Telstra over here)
  • Powered by a quad-core A5X chip
  • Personal hotspot – so you can use your iPad as a wireless modem to connect other devices to the Internet
  • 9.4mm thin, weighs 1.4lbs (slightly heavier than iPad2)
  • 10hrs battery life

 

 

 

Existing iPad apps will be scaled up automatically for the new retina display and text will automatically be rendered in hi-res according to Phil Schiller (SVP Marketing, Apple).

The new iPad launches on March 16th but you can pre-order in the US, Canada, UK, France, Germany, Switzerland, Japan, Hong Kong, Singapore and … AUSTRALIA!

iPad 2 will continue to be manufactured with the price for the 16GB Wifi model dropping $100 in the US.

Also covered in todays announcement…

iPhoto

iPhoto has been given a big update as well with many new tools to for the semi-professional photographer on the move. iPhoto will help you crop, fix contrast, brighten, tweak saturation and white balance, reduce red eye, add brush effects, sharpen/soften/darken or click a general ‘repair’ button to let Apple work its own magic for you. Looks very clever.

Apple TV

A new version of Apple TV is also being released with a very ‘iOS’ looking interface.

The new Apple TV will still retail for $99 and is available in the US from March 16th.

iOS 5.1

A new version of Apple’s mobile operating system was also announced including a Japanese Siri.

Photos c/o Gizmodo, The Verge and Engadget

Apple iPad3? Apple TV 3? iOS? What will they announce tomorrow?

Less than 24 hours before Apple reveal their big announcement and the Internet is buzzing with speculation, guesswork and rumour-mongering about what they will reveal.

Here’s a short list of some of the topics that may (or may not) be covered tomorrow:

  • the new iPad will be called iPad 3
  • no, the new iPad will be called iPad HD
  • nope, the new iPad will be called iPad 2S
  • there will be no announcement about the iPad
  • there will be a new version of Apple TV called Apple TV2
  • no, it will be called Apple TV3
  • Apple TV will be merged with iPad to create iPad Maxi-TV
  • the new iPad will be thicker than iPad 2
  • the new iPad will be thinner than iPad 2
  • the new iPad will be round
  • the next iOS will be called iOS Alley (the most fierce of the cat family)

Ok we’re bound to have got at least one of those right.

For the REAL announcements, follow us on Twitter for live updates on the presentation @fly_digital from 5am Sydney time, or sign-up to Innovation Technology – our digital innovation newsletter – for a round-up of the event.

Link your iPad to your iMac with HoverBar

They say it makes your iPad a “wingman for your iMac” and with HoverBar the team at Twelve South have come up with a neat gadget for Apple fanboys/girls.

It’s a cool way to store your iMac and reclaim some more desk space. Plus if you use apps like Air Display (that turn your iPad into a second screen) it’s a clever way to spread out your work without paying for an additional monitor.

via: @paulyd on twitter

How to get emoticons on iPhone/iPad messages

Adding emoticons to your iMessages, texts or emails on your Apple iOS device is very simple to setup, just follow these steps:

  1. click on ‘settings’
  2. choose ‘general’ > ‘international’ > ‘keyboards’
  3. click ‘add new keyboard’
  4. choose ‘Emoji’
  5. open up your iMessage/email app
  6. note the new globe button on the keyboard (circled below)
  7. click the globe button to swap keyboard, note the new emoticons that you can now add to your message

I am not proud to admit that sometimes (long bus journeys usually) I have been known to use emoticons to represent famous movies and see if friends can guess them. For example:

See if you can guess those – leave your answers in the comments, or send us some of your own creations.