(You're reading all posts by Alex Heath) Alex Heath has been a staff writer at Cult of Mac for three years. He is also a co-host of the CultCast. He has been quoted by places like the BBC, KRON 4 News, and books like "ICONIC: A Photographic Tribute to Apple Innovation." If you want to pitch a story, share a tip, or just get in touch, additional contact information is available on his personal site. Twitter always works too. All DMs excepted.
About Alex Heath
Airbnb is poised to completely disrupt the hotel industry, and today’s rebranding of the startup makes it even more obvious.
Like Uber and TaskRabbit, Airbnb is all about using technology to make a seamless experience in the real world. You can look up a place to stay in the iPhone app, communicate with the owner, and book it without ever having to be put on hold or wait in line at a front desk.
With a redesigned interface focused on simplicity and discoverability, Airbnb is making it easier to find places to stay. But sadly all of that is being ignored because of how ridiculous that new logo looks.
You should be able to easily switch carriers in the U.S. once you fulfill your two-year contract, but most of the time it’s easier said than done. A new bill being reviewed in Washington plans to let you unlock your phone to take it to any carrier after your contact is over.
IBM and Apple used to be sworn enemies, but a lot has changed since the early days of the Macintosh and the PC race. Both companies have committed to making Apple software and hardware a one-stop shop for businesses in what some consider one of the “most important and powerful tech partnerships” ever.
In an interview with CNBC, Tim Cook and IBM CEO Virginia Rometty discussed their mutual excitement about the “landmark” partnership.
Today Apple announced that it’s partnering with IBM to “transform enterprise mobility through a new class of business apps.” The relationship will combine IBM’s enterprise data specialties with Apple’s iOS hardware and software.
“iPhone and iPad are the best mobile devices in the world and have transformed the way people work with over 98 percent of the Fortune 500 and over 92 percent of the Global 500 using iOS devices in their business today,” said Apple CEO Tim Cook in a statement. “For the first time ever we’re putting IBM’s renowned big data analytics at iOS users’ fingertips, which opens up a large market opportunity for Apple. This is a radical step for enterprise and something that only Apple and IBM can deliver.”
There are four key areas that Apple will be working on with IBM:
Today Snapchat introduced Geofilters, which are location-based stickers that can be quickly applied to a snap by swiping once to the left after you take a picture. The feature could finally provide a revenue model for the startup that turned down a $3 billion offer from Facebook.
The iPhone 6 isn’t expected to feature radical improvements in battery life, but that doesn’t mean Apple hasn’t had trouble making new batteries for the device. Since the next iPhone will be thinner than the current design, its battery needs to be thinner as well.
Apple has been having trouble with battery makers overseas meeting its specifications, but now it’s being reported that new suppliers have been brought on to solve the issues. The news highlights how diversifying its partners in the Asian supply chain continues to be Apple’s strategy moving forward.
Shazam got a cool update today.
The song-recognition app that Apple is baking into Siri in iOS 8 can now play back full tracks thanks to a partnership with Rdio. Users with the Rdio app installed will be able to listen to a whole song tagged in Shazam without having to the leave the app.
I only recently got into the world of animated GIF memes, and that’s mainly thanks to a group of friends that like to inundate my iMessage with random stuff 24/7. Like any good millennial, I have some of my favorite GIFs saved in my Camera Roll to whip out at an appropriate time in a conversation.
Then there’s the world of making my own GIFs, which I have never had the slightest inclination to dabble in until I stumbled onto Ultratext, a relatively new app for the iPhone. After showing it to my techie and non-techie friends alike, it’s safe to say that Ultratext is the easiest and most fun way to create GIFs and share them in a matter of seconds.
The iPhone 5s is the number one smartphone in 35 countries around the world, according to new research conducted by Counterpoint Technology Market Research.
Samsung’s Galaxy S5 came in second followed by the S4, Note 3 phablet, and iPhone 5c at fifth place. With larger 4.7 and 5.5-inch iPhones on the horizon, Counterpoint notes that Apple will have another hit on its hands if it goes after the larger-screen smartphone market.
Besides a 4.7-inch model, Apple has been expected to announce an even larger 5.5-inch iPhone 6 this fall. But now production issues might keep Apple from pulling the trigger on an iPhablet until winter or even 2015.
Ming-Chi Kuo of the Taiwanese firm KGI Securities, who has been a consistently reliable source of information on Apple’s plans, isn’t bullish on seeing a 5.5-inch iPhone by the end of the year. Problems with the phone’s new display and casing could result in it being pushed back until well after the 4.7-inch iPhone 6 comes out.