Apple and Amazon end audiobook deal to avoid antitrust case

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CoM_Audible
Apple won't only buy audiobooks from Audible any more.
Photo: Cult of Mac

Apple has settled a possible antitrust lawsuit to the satisfaction of European Commission regulators and German Federal Cartel Office, after scrapping an exclusivity deal with the Amazon-owned Audible.

The investigation dates back to November 2015, following complaints from the German Publishers and Booksellers Association.

Former employee explains how Tim Cook made Apple boring

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Life at Apple is great for Tim Cook.
Tim Cook wants to keep peace at Apple.
Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Tim Cook’s kinder, gentler management style is the biggest reason why 2016 was one of the most boring years for Apple in recent memory, according to a former employee of the company.

Steve Jobs was notorious for inciting conflict and competition between top employees, which him a controversial leader but also birthed some of the most iconic tech products ever (iMac, iPod and iPhone). After Cook took over, he worked to eliminate conflict within Cupertino’s walls and made employees less passionate, claims ex-Apple employee Bob Burrough.

Apple could offer original scripted TV content by end of 2017

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Could Apple challenge shows like Netflix's Stranger Things
Photo: Netflix

Move over The Crown and Stranger Things! Apple is planning to enter the original TV shows and movies market, according to a new report.

The Wall Street Journal claims Apple has been in talks with “veteran producers” over the past few months about buying the rights to existing shows, and has also told them that it has plans to create its own programming — although those efforts are still in the early stages.

Amazon plans touchscreen Alexa speaker

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The Amazon Echo
Using Alexa is about to get even better.
Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Amazon is planning to capitalize on the success of its Alexa speakers by launching a high-end model with improved audio and a built-in touchscreen, according to a new report.

It would become the first Alexa speaker with a display, which is expected to show useful information like weather forecasts, calendar appointments and breaking news.

Apple tried to sign Chris Rock to iTunes movie deal

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Making TV shows is just one of Apple's many hobbies.
Photo: Apple

Cupertino’s slow flirtation with Hollywood nearly landed Apple an exclusive iTunes movie deal with comedian Chris Rock, according to a new report.

Apple has shown interest in producing original video content of its own. The company bought the rights to James Cordon’s Carpool Karaoke TV show, and it appears Apple has some tepid interest in making the type of movies you’d find on Netflix.