Today, however, marks the occasion on which the iPhone 6 family of devices officially became available for pre-order in China, ahead of the handsets landing in stores Friday, October 17.
“We are thrilled to bring iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus to our customers in China on all three carriers at launch,” Tim Cook said in an official Apple statement. “With support for TD-LTE and FDD-LTE, iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus customers will have access to high-speed mobile networks from China Mobile, China Telecom and China Unicom for an incredible experience.”
With GT Advanced Technologies asking permission to close down its Arizona factory after less than a year, it’s a fair question to ask where exactly Apple plans to get the sapphire displays for its forthcoming Apple Watch.
Earlier this week, KGI analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said that the bankruptcy filing wouldn’t affect Apple’s forthcoming wearables debut. According to a new report from Digitimes, the reason for this is that Apple has a backup plan in the form of two other sapphire cover suppliers besides GT Advanced: the South Korea-based Hansol Technics and China-based Harbin Aurora Optoelectronics Technology.
As someone who seems to care far more about the perfection of the beautiful objects he creates than about the trappings of celebrity, one word you’d be unlikely to associated with Apple’s design guru Jony Ive is “vain.”
Sapphire is used to protect the iPhone’s rear-facing iSight camera. Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac
GT Advanced Technologies is apparently getting out of the sapphire production game, after filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection at the start of this week.
As reported by Re/code and the Wall Street Journal, the beleaguered company is asking the court’s permission to “wind down” operations at its sapphire manufacturing plant in Arizona — and, yes, for those keep track, that does come less than one year after the company first announced its game-changing deal with Apple.
Issue 58 brings some memories of Steve, products we’d like to see updated, and more! Cover: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac
It’s that time of the week again — all of Cult of Mac’s best news stories and features, compiled in one place to peruse easily on your iPad or iPhone. This week we’ve got heartfelt remembrances of Steve Jobs, some products we’d like to see updated along with the coming new iPads, a look at upcoming Twin Peaks in our modern era, and some hard lessons learned in running the top iPad magazine. Plus, some great new apps to look at and a reminder that the iPhone 6 continues to sell like, well, iPhones.
iPad Air rumors are blowing up ahead of next week's event...
We get slammed 24/7 with new Apple rumors. Some are accurate, most are not. To give you a clue about what’s really coming out of Cupertino in the future, we’re busting out our rumor debunker each week to blow up the nonsense.
The invites are out for Apple's event on October 16th with the rumormill yelling that new iPad Airs are on the way, but could Apple have a few other surprises in store? The return of colored iMacs has been suggested by one of Apple's top bloggers, while others are predicting an iPad that will run both OS X and iOS. Check out this week's servings of Apple rumors and see what our crystal ball is predicting for next week.
The Verdict: I hope so. I use the mute switch all the time on my iPhone 6 Plus, but it never seems to get any use on the iPad, other than when I accidentally toggle it when flipping to landscape mode, and it gives Jony an excuse to shave an extra 0.5mm off the body, I'm sure he'll kill it quicker than he can pronounce aluminum.
The Rumor: iPad Air 2 will get a Retina HD screen to match iPhone 6 Plus?
The Verdict: The evidence in iOS 8.1 beta 2 looks convincing that Apple plans to increase the iPad's resolution sometime in the future. There haven't been any rumors of iPad display going Super Retina though, so don't get your hopes up that you'll see it next week.
The Rumor: The iPad Air's 2GB of RAM have been spotted in the wild.
The Verdict: Sounds likely. Geekbar managed to get their hands on a number iPhone 6 parts before its announcement last month. Now they claim they've got a shot of the 2GB RAM chips destined for the iPad Air 2, and we're hoping it's legit because the iPad needs a performance boost to separate it from the 6 Plus.
The Verdict: We believe it. People are surprised how popular the 6 Plus has been, even though the phablet trend has been ready breakout for the last year.
Foxconn was originally only churning out one 6 Plus unit for every four iPhone 6 units it made, but that's surely changed by now. The 6 Plus is harder to make, but brings in more money. With the 12-inch iPad launch date not even revealed to the public yet, it would be stupid of Apple not to throw as many production resources as it can at its biggest money maker of 2014.
The Verdict: Not happening. Tim Cook has made fun of the Surface tablets plenty, likening them to the creation of a toaster-refrigerator hybrid. Swapping between operating systems on Mac is a pain. On a tablet it would still be a pain, and it wouldn't really solve anything. Plus, Apple would have to create a touch version of OS X.
The most likely scenario is that the 12-inch iPad runs a version of iOS 8 that has exclusive features like dual-window and other tools for the big screen that make it a better productivity machine than the tinier iPads.
Apple's product lineup has gotten more colorful over the past few years with the addition of colored iPod Touches and the gold iPhone - which was 2013's surprise hit. Maybe Apple's clued in that consumers wouldn't mind color options other than brushed aluminum. Colorful Mac Pros or anodized iMacs would bring back some of Apple's iconic fashion and personalization from the old days, but what I want most is to see the resurrection of the Black MacBook.
Watch Apple unveil its new iPads live. Screenshot: Apple.com
With Apple’s last keynote live stream being an utter disaster, we weren’t holding out much hope for another one in the foreseeable future. But the company has today posted a note on its website that confirms you will be able to tune into next Thursday’s iPad event via the Apple website.
While some may see Xiaomi, Samsung, and other players in the smartphone race as iPhone copycats, Jony Ive sees it as downright “theft.” That was the clear takeaway from Ive’s interview at the Vanity Fair New Establishment Summit today.
Sometimes a movie's so good that you walk out of it begging to see the story picked up in a sequel. While Hollywood's sometimes guilty of churning out tired follow-ups that make us forget what we loved about the original film, that's certainly not a universal rule.
With that in mind, here's our list of the 9 sci-fi movie blockbusters we'd love to see sequels to. Scroll through our gallery to find out which flicks made the cut.
There have been reports of a sequel to this 1996 aliens-invade-the-world blockbuster going back years. Roland Emmerich even has a cutesy name for it: ID4-EVER. But will we actually see it? Amidst plenty of conflicting reports it’s still looking like a toss-up, although it would be great fun were it to happen.
Taking place two decades after the original alien invasion, this sequel could be a fun bit of speculative sci-fi about how the world would react in the aftermath of interstellar beings arriving to blow us all up. The original’s special effects still stand up today, but there’s no doubt that 2014-era CGI could help take everything to the next level.
When people talk about M. Night Shyamalan’s precipitous decline after The Sixth Sense, they’re forgetting the greatness that was 2000’s Unbreakable, a real-world take on the superhero movie about an ordinary joe (played by Bruce Willis) who discovers he’s endowed with unparalleled strength and healing abilities.
The movie ends (SPOILER ALERT!) with Willis having a sense of where he fits into the universe, his apparent friend Elijah Price (Samuel L. Jackson) having revealed his true colors, and the stage set for a colossal showdown. Trouble is, it never happened. But we’d love to see it if it did.
Telling the story of a young man capable of teleportation, 2008’s Jumper wasn’t blessed with the best critical reviews, although it nonetheless carved out a good chunk of profits at the box office. While the original, based on a 1992 sci-fi novel by Steven Gould, definitely had its fair share of problems, it was still an intriguing premise — and seemed to hint at a possible franchise we’ll apparently now never see.
What’s this about a sequel for RoboCop? No, you’re not reading an article from 1989 — we’re referring to a follow-up to the much-better-than-everyone-thought-it-would-be 2014 reboot. Star Joel Kinnaman had a sequel option in his contract, and it’s one that I’d dearly love to see the studio take him up on. Which is something I never thought I’d say before watching the reboot. Let’s just hope they don’t descend into the kid-friendly buffoonery of the original series’ sequels.
During a Reddit AMA event, Hellboy director Guillermo del Toro recently acknowledged that a Hellboy III is unlikely to happen on the basis that no studio wants to front him the cash to make it. While neither Hellboy nor Hellboy 2 set the box office on fire (no pun intended), they were still great adaptations of Mike Mignola’s cult comic book, and truly felt like they were aimed at fans. While there’s definitely a line of thought that says the not all-that-prolific del Toro shouldn’t be wasting his time with a sequel, it would still be awesome to see the Hellboy trilogy finished off in style.
“The [first] two movies were really set up to have this unbelievable resolve,” star Ron Perlman has said. "Everything that was done in both movies was leading up to this destiny, written in stone, of what Hellboy has been summoned to Earth to do. To not do it, particularly in light of the scope that Guillermo is thinking of for the resolve, would be in my mind a little bit of a shame.” Not just in your mind, Ron: a lot of us want to see the story brought to its satisfactory conclusion.
Starring William H. Macy, Ben Stiller, and Hank Azaria as a group of less-than-impressive superheroes, 1999’s Mystery Men was sort of the anti-Avengers in style. With characters like Mr. Furious, The Shoveler and The Blue Raja, it was nonetheless a pitch-perfect send-up of the superhero genre — and that would be more relevant than ever here in 2014. In a world where no-name heroes like Guardians of the Galaxy can become box office smashes, it’s definitely time for a reunion of the heroes of Champion City.
One of the best action flicks of 2012, Dredd sadly proved a flop at the box office, signalling the second time Judge Dredd has failed to make much of an impact on movie audiences. Who knows why, though, because this version of the futuristic lawman was every bit as grim and gritty as the successful comic it’s based on. With 40 years worth of stories to pick from, it would be great to see the Mega-City One universe expanded with a sequel or nine.
There was an ecologically-themed sequel to Ted Hughes’ original short story, The Iron Man called The Iron Woman, but as of yet it’s not been turned into a movie. 1999’s The Iron Giant was a colossal box office bomb but a critical darling. In the years since, it’s gone on to become a cult classic, while post-Pixar movie studios have gotten increasingly comfortable with the idea of smart family movies.
With director Brad Bird now being one of Pixar’s go-to directors, there’s a good chance he wouldn’t want to return to Warner Bros. to make a sequel to a film that was so badly mistreated the first time around, but we’d love to watch it if he did.