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Windows Phone 8.1 update introduces new resolutions, smart covers

07/28, 2:00pm

Dev Center notes on GDR1 outlines technical changes, options to enable smart covers

It appears that a list of technical and some minor consumer changes are coming for the GDR1 update of Windows Phone 8.1. While the information is currently only available to those with an account to Microsoft's Dev Center, data was obtained showing that some important changes are coming - including new resolution support, options to allow smart cases, and a few ease-of-use options.

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Samsung patent application for tablet sleeve uses prior Apple art

07/27, 4:30pm

Application for 'foldable pouch mobile cradle' uses art from Apple's Smart Cover

A new patent application from Samsung has surfaced, in which the company is seeking to claim a patent on a new type of sleeve for tablets. While that would not be cause for concern in most cases, some of the art in the application makes a direct call to a familiar cover for Apple's iPads. In the filing, Samsung - which has been repeatedly accused by Apple and others of "slavishly copying" the iPhone maker -- introduces prior art in the form of Apple's Smart Cover.

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Hands on: Smart Case, Smart Cover for iPad Air

11/05, 7:12am

Apple updates Smart Case, Smart Cover for iPad Air

The new narrow and thin dimensions of the Apple iPad Air have necessitated the creation of a new range of matching Apple covers. The updated Smart Cover ($39) and the new Smart Case ($79) have been tailor made by Apple in multiple color options to match its next-generation tablet. The Smart Cover and the Smart Case are each multifunctional, offering both protection and the ability to be used in two different positions, while also automatically putting your device to sleep or waking it. So which one do you choose?

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Analyst: New iPad will also bring new Smart Cover design

10/15, 12:19am

Claims previous covers, Smart Covers won't fit new full-size tablet

Citing sources from among Apple's Chinese and Taiwanese suppliers, analyst Brian J. White of Cantor Fitzgerald says that if the rumors and parts leaks for the next full-size iPad are accurate -- a thinner design that mimics the iPad mini in style -- then the company will additionally introduce new iPad Smart Covers for the forthcoming product. While the conclusion may seem a bit obvious to fans of the tablets, White's investor clients don't often factor in ancillary sales such as covers into their AAPL profit forecasts.

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Video purports to show Smart Covers for fifth-generation iPad

09/26, 1:11pm

Covers fit new, narrower design

A new video shows what are allegedly redesigned Smart Covers for the fifth-generation iPad. To demonstrate this, two of the covers, obtained by Unbox Therapy, are attached to a leaked chassis for the fifth-gen tablet. The covers fit exactly, even though the chassis is narrower than the current fourth-gen iPad. Gray, black, red, pink, orange, blue, white, and green colors are reportedly in production.

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Apple wins new iPhone 4, iPad, MagSafe design patents

12/04, 1:58pm

Core designs of iPhone 4, iPad 2 secured

Apple has won the rights to several important design patents from the US Patent and Trademark Office. These include the look of the iPhone 4, which is credited in part to lead designer Jonathan Ive, as well as the company's co-founder, Steve Jobs. Ive is also cited in all the other new patents, such as one for the iPhone 4 "Bumper" case.

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iPad mini orders en route for early online buyers

10/30, 1:35pm

Mini Smart Covers already being delivered

Apple is beginning to ship early online orders of the iPad mini, notes MacRumors. Although the company's official tracking page is showing orders as "Preparing for Shipment," FedEx data indicates that many tablets are already en route. People who ordered Smart Covers for their Minis are in fact starting to receive the accessories.

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iPad mini Smart Covers make do without metal hinges

10/23, 3:06pm

Smart Covers will cost $39, be offered in six colors

The just-revealed iPad mini will launch alongside official Smart Covers from Apple. There will be six available, with a black, grey, pink, green, blue, and a (Product) RED version. Unlike the Smart Covers for the full-sized iPads, there won't be a metal hinge in the mini covers, and it's one-sided.

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Apple wins patent on Smart Cover 'peek mode' tech

09/11, 10:20am

'Peek' concept would allow partial use of iPad screen

Apple was won a patent on the magnet technology in the Smart Cover for the iPad, and a so-far unused "peek mode" concept, says AppleInsider. The patent describes a magnetic assembly designed to ensure that the accessory can be easily aligned and attached to a tablet that has its own built-in magnets. More critical to the patent are tablet sensors used to detect the presence of a magnetic field, which in the case of the iPad shut the device on and off when the Smart Cover is lifted or closed.

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Apple files for patent on Smart Cover with flexible display

08/02, 7:46am

Future Apple Smart Cover could include embedded display

An Apple patent application first filed in August last year has revealed a design for a Smart Cover with a flexible secondary display. According to the patent filing with the USPTO, Apple says that flexible display technology can be integrated into the flexible cover without changing the overall form factor of the device. Adding the flexible display into the cover "greatly enhances the overall functionality of the tablet device."

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Second report backs mid-September iPhone event

07/30, 11:45am

Fate of iPad mini less certain

An iLounge source is backing claims that a new iPhone will be launched around mid-September. The person is somewhat vaguer, only hinting at a date around the third week, but that would be consistent with a rumored September 21st target. The source adds that Apple is working on two or more cases for the device: this includes one similar to the current Bumper case, expected to ship at the same time as the new phone, and another which could supposedly have a major impact on the accessory industry.

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New lawsuit targets Apple over Smart Cover design

04/27, 12:25pm

May face uphill fight after Apple patent win

A Colorado resident, Jerald Bovino, has filed a new lawsuit against Apple, claiming that the company's Smart Cover infringes a 2005 patent. Bovino owns patent 6,977,809, which describes a "Portable Computer Case." One similarity between the patent concept and the Smart Cover is a series of visible "rib" lines.

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Apple wins 25 new patents on wide range of technologies

04/26, 9:50am

Range extends from Smart Covers to iTunes rentals

Apple has won the rights to 25 new US patents, covering numerous different products, Patently Apple observes. Some of these include a second patent on the iTunes Store and its rental system, and a fifth patent on Time Machine, featuring an interface capable of showing earlier versions of files. The former dates back to 2008, while the latter was originally submitted in 2007.

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Inconsistent Smart Cover performance mystery solved

03/21, 3:30am

New iPad requires a particular polarity

Earlier this week, MacNN noted that despite similar specifications, some iPad 2 accessories don't quite work with the third-generation iPad. Form-fitting accessories such as hard-plastic shells, for example, may not fit the iPad's slightly thicker depth. Reports of inconsistencies with both Apple branded Smart Covers and third-party covers that offered the same functionality has been clarified by an enterprising user, reports Mashable.

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Another purported iPad 3 back shows cosmetic changes

02/09, 8:20am

iPad 3 may have repositioned camera

Another proclaimed leak of an iPad 3 casing has given some possible clearer indicators of how the design might change. Unlike the previous tip, Apple.pro's view shows the back and more conspicuously shows the moved rear camera. The outside also suggests a conservative design with virtually the same tapered aluminum as the iPad 2.

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iPad 3 may be thicker, still support iPad 2 Smart Covers

12/07, 5:20pm

Size could be necessary for new tech

The iPad 3 will be thicker, claim "Asian intelligence sources" cited by Macotakara. The change will allegedly render cases fitting the back of an iPad 2 useless. The front of the 3 is expected to remain largely the same though according to a parts supplier, to the extent that Smart Covers made for the iPad 2 will still function.

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ASUS gives video demo of its Transformer Prime Sleeve

12/05, 5:55am

Asus demos Smart Cover/Origami-like sleeve

ASUS has lifted the lid on a video demo of its Transformer Prime Sleeve. The sleeve looks and functions similarly to the iPad 2 Smart Cover. It is also reminiscent of the InCase Origami iPad case that folds in a way that allows that props the device up for easy typing. Asus has given a video demo (embedded below) of the cover in action using its Facebook page.

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Apple to do low-key World AIDS Day retail promotion

11/29, 10:10am

Expected to push existing (PRODUCT) RED gear

Apple Stores will mark a very low-key observance of World AIDS Day on December 1st, claim sources for ifoAppleStore. The plan involves simply promoting goods that fall under (PRODUCT) RED, which donates a small portion of proceeds to the Global Fund to fight AIDS in Africa. Some Apple Specialists, for instance, will be wearing and marketing the RED iPod nano.

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Source leaks early details on Apple Black Friday deals

11/23, 10:10am

Macs, iPads, iPods see discounts

A leaked pamphlet shows the some of discounts Apple is planning to offer for this year's Black Friday sale, according to 9to5Mac. In terms of computers, the company is taking $101 off the iMac, MacBook Air, and MacBook Pro. iPad 2 discounts range from $41 to $61, depending on storage capacity, and a similar philosophy applies to the iPod touch, which is getting between $21 and $41 off. Both the 8 and 16GB iPod nanos are $11 chepaer.

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iOS 5.0.1 security fixes eliminate Smart Cover exploit

11/10, 2:40pm

Also copes with DNS, certificate, kernel issues

The iOS 5.0.1 update deals with several security flaws in addition to making feature improvements, an Apple note indicates. Among these is a Smart Cover exploit that allowed people to skip passcodes and gain limited access to an iPad 2. Also fixed are vulnerabilities in components like fonts, DNS and URL handling, and weak certificates associated with DigiCert Malaysia, which are no longer trusted.

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Apple tweaks colors in iPad 2 Smart Cover lineup [u]

10/24, 1:10pm

Leather, polyurethane options change

(Updated with other changes) Apple has made some slight changes to the Smart Cover lineup for the iPad 2, a check of the company's online store indicates. Gone is the orange polyurethane option; in its place, a new dark gray model has been added. The leather cases, meanwhile, are now described as having a "soft, color-matched" microfiber lining instead of just a soft one.

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Accessories: Belkin intros two new iPad 2 Snap Shield cases

09/28, 10:40pm

Both designed to work with Apple's Smart Cover

Building on the success of its original Snap Shield back cover for the iPad 2, Belkin today added two new cases to its Snap Shield lineup, both of which -- like the original -- are designed to complement Apple's own Smart Cover. The Snap Shield Secure is a thin, translucent backing that simply snaps on, while the Emerge 024 offers lightweight protection with color options.

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Samsung distances itself from Anymode Smart Case

07/19, 7:50am

Samsung puts Anymode Smart Case at armsí length

Samsung has taken the unusual step of issuing a statement in response to the launch of a third-party iPad Smart Cover rip-off made specifically for its Galaxy Tab 10.1. Samsung has denied any involvement with Anymode stating that the company used its branding without its permission, and in the process trying to ensure that it distances itself from the blatant imitation of what is a patented Apple design.

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SwitchEasy looses iPad 2 CoverBuddy, works with Smart Cover

05/03, 10:20pm

Scosche launches waterproof, flexible keyboard

SwitchEasy has launched a new iPad 2 case, the CoverBuddy, for use with Apple's Smart Cover. The CoverBuddy offers protection for the iPad's rear casing, which the Smart Cover lacks. It is made of shock-proof polycarbonate and comes with rubber-coated colors or a clear finish with a UV-coating. It provides access to all ports in use, including the rear speaker grill. It ships in ultraclear, black, grey, blue and pink and costs $25.

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Cheap iPad 2 Smart Cover clone falls apart

04/08, 11:35am

iPad 2 Smart Cover knockoff serves as warning

A discovery late Thursday of a cheap copy of the iPad 2's Smart Cover has served as a possible warning for those shopping for clones. The unnamed Chinese make was found to be much more cheaply made than the official design and virtually ineffective at its job. Although MIC Gadget's example could wake and sleep the iPad, the shoddy construction was such that the hinge completely detached from the cover and would likely have led to a broken iPad if the owner wasn't holding the iPad underneath.

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iPad 2's Smart Cover torn down, found using 31 magnets

03/14, 9:35am

iPad 2 Smart Cover torn down by iFixit

A unique teardown by iFixit of the iPad 2's Smart Cover and its match-up in the iPad has revealed a more elaborate system than many first thought. The two use a total of 31 magnets, 21 in the cover and 10 in the iPad itself, and are in a more complex layout than some might initially suspect. Only one round magnet in the cover, and a corresponding sensor, turns the display on or off; the rest are used to keep the iPad in place and help keep the cover folded up when used as a stand.

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