Works on 32-bit devices only for now, takes advantage of same flaws jailbreak uses
As has been predicted for some time, a new malware threat exploits the same flaws in iOS that jailbreaking tools use in order to install itself on older jailbroken iPhones and iPads. The malware, likely to be found in devices where the user has installed third-party customizations, scans for the Apple ID and password of the user, then transmits it to remote servers. Current, 64-bit iOS devices like the iPhone 5s, iPad Air or second-generation iPad mini -- and un-jailbroken iOS devices of all sorts -- appear to be immune so far.
Users must have Apple ID, signed confidentiality agreement
For the first time, access to OS X beta releases has been opened to non-developers. Apple has introduced the Beta Seed Program, which requires only that a person have an Apple ID and sign a confidentiality agreement. The agreement blocks people from sharing information to anyone not also registered to receive betas.
Latest release has minor tweaks, same focus on testing
Just six days after the previous release, Apple has pushed out the eighth beta of OS X Mavericks 10.9.3 to developers for testing. Other than minor tweaks and fixes, the only thing different about the latest version is its build number, 13D45a -- just two build versions older than the previous one, and with an "a" appendix for unknown reasons. The numbering suggests that the update is nearing "golden master" status, with no known issues listed.
Platforms now in more equal competition
Apple and Google are each offering game developers special incentives to prefer their app store over their rival's, according to sources for the Wall Street Journal. The prime example given is EA's Plants vs. Zombies 2, which Apple promised to advertise prominently at the App Store. In return, EA was expected to keep the game an iOS exclusive for two months, which pushed the Android release into October. Another developer, ZeptoLab, agreed to three-month App Store exclusivity for Cut the Rope 2 in order to get better advertising. Asphalt creator Gameloft says it was offered exclusivity, but decided that a simultaneous iOS/Android release made more financial sense.
Beats Music app update adds in-software subscription
Beats Music's streaming service app for iOS has received an update. Users can now subscribe to the streaming service from within the app, meaning that once the trial period is over, the transition to paid service is that much easier. Also included is the ability to find Facebook friends who use Beats, improved social network linking, and new tracks in the Sentence playlist generator. The Beat Music app can be downloaded from the iTunes Store.
Second lottery for chance to attend June 2-6 conference in San Francisco
Following the lapse of the deadline for Worldwide Developers Conference ticket lottery winners to pay for their entry, Apple has begun emailing other developers with a chance to purchase unclaimed tickets. The emails are likely also determined by lottery, though the company hasn't said. Reserved slots from the original lottery were held until April 14 at 5pm Pacific time, and it is thought that most of the lottery winners accepted the invitation to attend, which costs $1,600.
UC Berkeley was birthplace of BSD Unix kernel used in OS X, iOS
Apple has again expanded its Maps program for both iOS and OS X by adding 3D "Flyover" support for the east side of the San Francisco Bay Area, including the city of Berkeley and its University of California campus, which by happenstance is the birthplace of the original UNIX used as the foundation of both OS X and iOS. The 3d Flyover feature has generally been regarded as one of Maps' best features, alongside turn-by-turn driving navigation.
Developers could win cash prize for creating best Project Ara smartphone module
Google is aiming to launch the first Project Ara smartphone in January next year, the company revealed at the project's first developer conference earlier this week. Google is also attempting to encourage developers to produce sections of the modular smartphone, by offering a $100,000 prize in a competition for designing the best Ara module.
Song-identification technology may be enlisted for Siri, iTunes Radio
Citing unnamed sources "with knowledge of the product," Bloomberg is reporting that Apple may enter into a partnership with song-identifying app Shazam to bring the music-matching feature to iOS 8. Users could, for example, ask Siri "what song is playing?" as they listen to iTunes Radio or other streaming music services, with the voice assistant enlisting Shazam's services to return an answer after a short identifying pause. This in turn would produce a link to the song on iTunes.
CEO to make pitch to Apple to make Google search optional
Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer, who has worked diligently to turn around the veteran search engine's fortunes with some success, is planning on appealing to Apple to make Yahoo's search engine the default choice on the Mac and iOS. Currently Apple offers Yahoo as a option for search, but uses Google as a default (and Bing to power Siri inquiries). Mayer may seen an opportunity to advance Yahoo's already-friendly relationship with Apple, given its fight with Google over Android and patents.
Launches mobile app to help users design, implement iBeacon-based 'SensorTags'
Veteran embedded chip and automotive systems maker Texas Instruments has announced plans to incorporate Apple's iBeacon technology in many of the company's forthcoming Bluetooth products, saying that "there are many more applications that could benefit from the technology" beyond its presence popular use in retail shops, restaurants and stadiums. TI will be adding iBeacons to its SimpleLink line of automotive micro-controllers, and it WiLink navigation systems.
String of Samsung witnesses find that Apple's patents are all invalid
Not only did Samsung not infringe on Apple's patents, a parade of witnesses for Samsung told the jury today in the Apple-Samsung trial, those patents aren't valid even if Samsung did copy them. With some help from Apple's very light cross-examination, Samsung again flew through a lengthy list of experts who testified on the relative worthlessness of Apple's patents for "data detectors" (also referred to as "quick links"), universal search, autocorrection and the "slide to unlock" concept.
Weekly update comes with no known issues, few changes
Just shy of a week after the last release, Apple has issued its seventh beta of the forthcoming maintenance release, 10.9.3, to developers. As before, the new version lists no known issues, and asks testers to focus on any remaining issues with graphics drivers, audio, Mail, Safari, and the re-introduced feature of local syncing of Contacts and Calendar data through iTunes to local devices. The new build, 13D43, also includes preliminary support for pixel doubling on 4K displays.
Universal app submissions part of Windows Dev Center changes
Microsoft has started to accept submissions for "Universal Apps" in its Dev Center. Developers can now link apps made for the Windows Store and Windows Phone Store to create a single Windows app listing, allowing users to buy once on one platform and for it to be downloadable and usable on other Windows devices they also own.
Windows Phone update to 8.1 adds Cortana, may void warranties
Windows Phone 8.1 is now available to download as a developer preview, allowing users to try out the Cortana virtual assistant on their own devices. The latest version of the mobile operating system, which Microsoft officially debuted on April 2nd at its Build conference, can be installed on smartphones owned by developers enrolled in Microsoft's Windows Phone Developer program.
Tweet: 'Both sides relying on stories to sell jury, Samsung borrowing Google's'
At the end of the twelth day of the Apple-Samsung trial, and fifth day of testimony, Apple rested its case against Samsung following a detailed presentation from "microeconomist" and PhD Chris Vellturo in which he explained for the jury exactly how he calculated the $2.191 billion in damages Samsung should owe Apple for its infringement. Samsung, which has admitted in an earlier damages retrial that it copied from Apple, began presenting its defense -- by borrowing a Google software executive.
SSL bug could still be found in Mac servers running PostgreSQL, MacPorts, other add-ons
Apple has confirmed on Thursday that all of its operating systems and key web services, as well as its website and iCloud service, are not affected by the "Heartbleed" SSL flaw that is threatening much of the web. The "Heartbleed" bug, a flaw in the implementation of later versions of OpenSSL -- which is used by many but not all websites to handle secure log-ins and other transactions -- has put as much as two-thirds of the World Wide Web at risk.
Xcode update a bug-fix release, iMovie adds features
A week after developers received the "golden master" for Xcode 5.1.1 (free), the minor update has been released to users by Apple. The 2.18GB program, which allows developers to author programs for OS X Mountain Lion and Mavericks (10.8 and 10.9) as well as iOS 7.1, has received a handful of bug fixes, and improves the reliability of Quick Look within the debugger. In addition, Apple has updated iMovie for Mac to v10.0.3, which adds new sorting, title and font options.
Multiple sources confirm retirement was announced internally weeks ago
Earlier reports that senior iOS engineer and leader of Apple's Human Interface Group Greg Christie was leaving the company over tension with software and hardware design chief Sir Jonathan Ive appear to have been half-correct. Multiple sources have come forward to note that Christie is retiring, but had announced the move weeks ago internally.
Latest release comes with minor tweaks to new features
On Wednesday, Apple issued its sixth beta of the forthcoming maintenance release, 10.9.3. As with last week, developers are asked to focus on graphics drivers, audio, Mail, Safari and the newly-restored local syncing of contacts and calendar data over USB through iTunes. In earlier versions of iTunes 11, syncing was exclusively handled by iCloud. The new build, 13D38, is only five revisions higher than the previous release, suggesting that a public debut is likely to happen relatively soon.
Includes 64-bit support
Aviary has launched a major update to its Photo Editor SDK for iOS, used by a number of photography-related apps. The SDK includes a new UI scheme, aligned with changes made in iOS 7. Developers can choose to customize the editor to suit their particular apps. Aviary has also improved the code's efficiency, for instance by shrinking the SDK, and boosting performance in finished apps through changes like 64-bit support.
Game of Thrones premiere free on Xbox Video after HBO Go crashes
HBO is offering the season 4 premiere of Game of Thrones free on Xbox, after its HBO Go app failed during the broadcast. The free episode will be viewable on both the Xbox One and Xbox 360 through Xbox Video, rather than the HBO Go app until April 14th, reports Variety. HBO Go is not the only service to be affected by the influx of Game of Thrones fans, as British broadcaster Sky's Now TV suffered a similar fate during the later UK broadcast last night.
Apple's case continues with engineer Deniau, experts Mowry and Snoeren
Over the weekend, Apple filed a notice with the court that it could wrap up its main presentation by tomorrow at the earliest, but expects to be done no later than Friday, barring any changes to Samsung's pattern of cross-examination. On Monday, patent expert Andrew Cockburn from New Zealand was summoned back to the witness stand for a scant 16 minutes of light cross-examination, followed by testimony from Apple engineer Thomas Deniau and a pair of additional patent experts.
Random picks seen as preferable to instant sellouts
This year, those wishing to attend Apple's Worldwide Developer's Conference don't just need to have $1,600 burning a hole in their pockets; they also need lady luck on their side. Due to last year's instant sellout of the conference, Apple has decided to move to a lottery system to help ensure that people from across different time zones have a chance of attending. Those selected in the lottery are being notified by email, and will have until April 14 to buy their ticket.
Revamps auto platform following Sync setbacks
In a somewhat startling direct lift from Apple, Microsoft announced a new "Windows in the car" initiative based on Windows Phone and Windows 8 that would mirror most of what Apple previously called "iOS in the Car" last summer before renaming it CarPlay. The concept, unveiled at last week's Build conference in San Francisco, comes on the heels of Ford's rejection of Microsoft's previous system in its Sync interface in favor of a BlackBerry-powered in-vehicle infotainment system.
Rapid adoption means iOS more secure, easier to develop for
On Monday, Apple updated its iOS adoption statistics for developers to show that 87 percent of active iOS devices are now running iOS 7, with only 11 percent still on iOS 6 and a mere two percent (presumably devices that cannot upgrade, such as the original iPad) stuck on earlier versions. The figure was achieved less than seven months after the original release of the upgrade in mid-September. By comparison, only about 5.3 percent of Android users have or have been allowed to upgrade to last year's KitKat , which was announced around the same time as iOS 7 and debuted a month later.
Media client Plex to develop for use on Xbox One
Microsoft has given permission to Plex developers to create a version of the media client for Xbox One, in light of the recent announcement to support universal applications. Plex offers users the ability to organize movies, TV, music and photos for consumption on one's TV, and other devices. The developers have been granted membership into ID@Xbox.
Shows interest in Apple TV, MobileMe improvements
As a byproduct of the patent trial between Apple and Samsung currently going on in San Francisco, a number of previously-confidential Apple emails have seen the light of day. Some talk about how to react to Samsung's marketing bombardment, since it outspent all rivals but Apple combined on advertising its smartphones; others reveal additional details on things already known. A 2010 email from Steve Jobs, shown in court, reveals a little of how Apple works to improve itself.
Heavy bug-fix update indicates final release imminent
On Friday, Apple seeded a "golden master" (GM) version of Xcode 5.1.1 to developers. The "golden master" is usually a release the company feels will not be changed before the final, but is tested one more time to find any showstopper issues. The new update features a substantive number of bug fixes and enhancements. Xcode 5.1.1 will also mark the beginning of a deprecation of some features, including the Apple Text Services (ATS) framework, which is being migrated to CoreText.
Facebook Messenger for iOS and Android adds free calling
Facebook has updated its Messenger app again, adding a free calling feature. Users can now call their Facebook friends over a WiFi connection for free, meaning that those who need to make international calls can do so easily. Available in both the iOS and Android versions of Facebook Messenger, the app is free to download on iTunes and Google Play.
Testing continues with new OS X 10.9.3 beta, adds back local contact, calendar sync
On Thursday, Apple issued its fifth weekly beta of the forthcoming OS X Mavericks 10.9.3 to developers. In addition to the usual areas of testing focus -- graphics, audio, Mail and Safari -- the company also requested testing on the ability in iTunes to sync Calendar and Contact entries locally over USB. In earlier versions of iTunes 11, syncing was exclusively handled by iCloud. The new build, 13D33, contains no new known issues.
'State of the Union,' Design Awards to be live-streamed
Apple has officially announced that the 2014 Worldwide Developers Conference will kick off on June 2nd at Moscone West in San Francisco, and run through the 6th. Registrations are due to open up on Monday, April 7th, at 10AM Pacific time (1PM Eastern). Entrants will be randomly selected, and notified if they got in by 5PM Pacific the same day. The company is also planning to offer 200 student scholarships granting people free tickets; the National Center for Women & Information Technology and its partners will help promote those scholarships to female developers.
New Kinect for Windows sensor accompanied by new SDK
Microsoft has updated the version of the Kinect for Windows, bringing it in line with the Kinect used in the Xbox One, the company has revealed. The new sensor bar will ship sometime this summer alongside an updated software development kit, with Microsoft also preparing to make it easier for developers to provide members of the public with Kinect-enabled Windows apps.
Resolution independent UI, best practices detailed at BUILD conference
At today's Build conference, Microsoft has detailed an initiative to allow developers to create one application, usable across Windows Phone 8.1, Windows 8 for the Surface tablet, Windows 8.1 for the PC, as well as the Xbox One. The move, rumored for some time, is the first of its kind, allowing nearly all the same code to be used across platform -- contrary to Apple's and Google's approach to mobile device application development.
Includes direct support for new top-level domains for Mavericks, Mountain Lion
Alongside updates for the iWork apps for iCloud, OS X and iOS, Apple on Tuesday released version 7.0.3 (for Mavericks) and 6.1.3 (for Mountain Lion) of its Safari browser. The new release, which only had two betas released to developers before going final, adds enhanced push notification settings and direct support for some new top-level domains (which could previously only be accessed through a search). The update also addresses a few credit card autofill and security issues.
Opportunity to 'try before you buy,' earn rewards through ads seen as selling points
A new study from Wild Tangent and IHS Technology has found that iOS gamers overwhelmingly prefer free games with ads -- so called "freemium" games -- over paid but ad-free game apps. A total of 86 percent of the 500 respondents sampled in the survey said they preferred free games with ads over paid games, with 70 percent preferring advertising-support games, while the other 16 percent preferred ad-supported games that offered in-app purchases (IAPs) to buy equipment, levels and other items.
Prices dip in Israel, New Zealand
Apple is raising iOS and Mac App Store prices in several countries, according to an email memo sent to developers. The hikes will impact Australia, India, Indonesia, Turkey, and South Africa. Apple blames the change on fluctuations in exchange rates, which the company adjusts for on a regular basis.
Former media event lives on as accessory, app showcase
The Macworld Expo (now called Macworld/iWorld) certainly isn't the show it was five years ago, the last year Apple attended. Its a much smaller show -- maybe 25,000 attendees at best -- but with a more sustainable focus: a showcase for computer and mobile peripherals, accessories and gadgets, as well as a gathering of app developers. Because Apple doesn't make big announcements timed to the conference anymore -- and the one company that did, Microsoft, chose not to have its Office for iPad event there -- the Macworld/iWorld show doesn't make the news as often as it used to.
Successful crowd-funded projects a fresh source of innovation
Macworld/iWorld 2014, currently going on at the Moscone Center in San Francisco, handed out its Best of Show awards on Friday, including a mix of hardware devices and software apps, many of which started life as successful Kickstarter or similar crowd-funded ideas, both from established companies and novice entrepreneurs. Winners included a portable RAID drive, a thermal camera for the iPhone, an app to get kids to do their chores, and new Thunderbolt adapters, among other useful apps and gadgets.
Testing focus remains unchanged
A new beta of OS X 10.9.3 is being seeded to developers, 13D28, accounts say. In release notes Apple asks for testing to continue in the same areas: audio, graphics drivers, Safari, and USB sync of contacts and calendars via iTunes. The updated beta follows an internal Apple-only distribution.
Logo rules promote Android at device start-up
Google is pushing to promote the Android operating system further, by requiring device manufacturers to add extra branding to their devices. The start-up screens of the new HTC One and the Samsung Galaxy S5 both now include a "Powered by Android" logo close to the bottom, and could possibly lead to more prominent signs of the mobile operating system's use in the future.
Tool aimed at non-developers
Developer Preview of next Windows Phone version delayed by a week
The Windows Phone Store will be overhauled in Windows Phone 8.1, according to some new screenshots. At the same time, as the store changes have surfaced, there is also news the Windows Phone 8.1 core has been finalized, meaning that most of the main development of the mobile operating system has completed, but it is apparently still a long way off from reaching consumers.
Exposure cannot overcome Flappy Bird phenomenon, but it helps
A new study by mobile analytics firm App Annie has quantified the idea that app developers can increase their products' visibility in the App Store and gain players through the use of TV commercials -- particularly for top-quality "freemium" titles. While the practice of developers creating their own TV ads is common in some countries like Japan, it is a fairly new phenomenon in the North America. The App Annie study showed a correlation between TV exposure and a gain in App Store rankings.
Ultimatum from Jobs was fuel to invent numerous features
Greg Christie, one of the original iPhone engineers and a witness likely to be called in the second Apple-Samsung patent trial starting next week, has revealed in a new interview that an "ultimatum" from then-CEO Steve Jobs pushed his team into creating the core of the "iPhone OS" (as it was called then) in just two weeks. The full interview, conducted by the Wall Street Journal, goes into detail about the secrecy required of the project and how the team came to invent much of what consumers think of as the principles of a smartphone operating system.
Roku for iOS updates interface, adds remote control feature
Roku's remote control iOS app has received an update, offering a refreshed user interface that controls the Roku set-top box hardware. The app requires an iOS device to be connected to the same network as a Roku player, and facilitates controlling and accessing various media content. In v3.0.0 of Roku's iOS app, users now have access to searching Roku content on one's iPhone, by entering a movie, show, actor, or director and exploring the results. By connecting to any Roku player on one's network, the app can control it, playing photos, music or video. The app's overall visual design has been revamped, and miscellaneous bug fixes are included. Roku for iOS requires iOS 6.0 or later, and is free to download.
New system uses the Tegra K1 192 core processor
Nvidia today launched a developer platform based on the Tegra K1 for embedded systems. The Nvidia Jetson TK1 Developer Kit provides developers with the tools to create systems and applications aimed at tasks such as enabling robots to seamlessly navigate, physicians to perform mobile ultrasound scans, drones to avoid moving objects, and cars to detect pedestrians.
Developers asked to test push notifications, AutoFill
Apple has begun seeding its second betas of Safari 7.0.3 and 6.1.3 to developers. Apple is once asking for testing to be focused on push notifications, extension compatibility, overall website compatibility, and login AutoFill. For v7.0.3 exclusively, developers are asked to examine credit card AutoFill.
Apple briefly caught testing 'related' suggestions on App Store searches
On Monday, various users reported seeing a new feature during their visits to the iOS App Store -- a "related" keywords feature not previously present, seen when searching for apps. The test only appeared on devices running iOS 7, possibly limited to iOS 7.1 and OS X only, and quickly reverted to normal. The company already offers "related" suggestions, but only with a specific "app card," rather than while a search is still in progress. The feature is thought to be another example of Chomp integration, a company Apple bought in 2012.
Mavericks server 3.1 pulled, version 3.1.1 posted with no changelog
Having released OS X Server for Mavericks nearly a week ago, Apple on Monday replaced the former 3.1 version available on the Mac App Store with a revised version, 3.1.1, which does not list any differences or bug fixes from the previous 3.1 release. The previous and current release both list a number of improvements, including new support for a Device Enrollment Program within Device Manager; new management of fonts, AirPrint and Wi-Fi Hotspot 2.0 settings, and improved Activation Lock use for admins. The suite costs $20 for new users, but the updated version is free for existing 3.x users.