Apple Maps error covers up sad truth about disappearing Aral Sea

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Apple's Aral Sea on left, NASA latest image on right. Photo: Cult of Mac
Apple's Aral Sea on left, NASA latest image on right. Photo: Cult of Mac

You may have never heard of the Aral Sea, even though it was the fourth largest lake in the world as recently as the 1960’s.

The once-gigantic body of water which rests on the border of Uzbekistan has shrunk to less than 10% of its former size over the last half century. It’s been dubbed one of the worst environmental disasters ever, but looking at Apple Maps you’d never even know the Russians drained the mighty lake dry, destroyed its robust fishing industry, and left behind a wasteland of salt, pollution, and toxic dust storms.

Apple Putin up prices in its Russian online store

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Photo: Apple
Russia's latest woe: iPhones now cost more than ever. Photo: Apple

Apple has re-opened its online store in Russia after temporarily closing it last week following “extreme” fluctuations in the valuation of the country’s currency, the ruble.

But while that’s good news for people wanting to order Apple goods over the holidays, it’s not likely to go over well with the majority of customers — since prices have dramatically increased.

The cost of an iPhone 6, for instance, has risen 35 percent: with a 16GB iPhone 6 selling for 34,990 rubles before the shutdown, and 53,990 rubles now. That means a base level iPhone costs $980 in Russia.

Apple halts Russian sales due to ruble’s ‘extreme’ fluctuations

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iAddiction is real. Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac
Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Apple fans in Russia can no longer buy new iPhones or Macs, reports Bloomberg. The company has stopped all sales in the country due to ‘extreme’ Ruble fluctuations.

All Apple products were pulled temporarily from the online store in Russia this morning, and Apple’s not saying when they’ll be coming back.

Russia is selling its banned Steve Jobs tribute statue

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Steve Jobs statue in Russia at its public unveiling Photo: RIA Novosti
Steve Jobs statue in Russia at its public unveiling Photo: RIA Novosti

The abandoned Steve Jobs monument previously erected in St. Petersburg, Russia is to be auctioned off, according to a new report.

The 6-foot-tall iPhone-looking slab was designed by local Russian sculptor Gleb Tarasov and named “Sunny QR Code.” It was assembled in the wake of Steve Jobs’ 2011 death, but removed earlier this year — reportedly as a result of Russia’s anti-gay laws after Tim Cook outed himself in an open letter.

The statue is being sold off by owners the Russian Holdings Company, with a starting price of 5 million rubles (around $95,000). Money from the sale will go to Russian tech developers.