Today in Apple history: Unique Apple-1 computer sells for big money

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Steve Wozniak shows off a
Steve Wozniak shows off a "Celebration" model Apple-1, the rarest version of Apple's rarest computer.
Photo: Charitybuzz

August 25: Today in Apple history: Rare Celebration Apple-1 computer sells for big money August 25, 2016: An ultra-rare Apple-1 computer raises $815,000 in a charity auction, one of the highest prices ever paid for one of the machines. Bidding actually reaches $1.2 million in the auction’s final minutes. However, that bid gets pulled seconds before a winner is announced.

The reason for the super-high price? This “Celebration” Apple-1 boasts a feature that did not appear on any production models of the computer.

Today in Apple history: Steve Jobs resigns as Apple CEO

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Steve Jobs
Steve Jobs' health wouldn't allow him to continue as CEO.
Photo: Ben Stanfield/Flickr CC

August 24: Today in Apple history: Steve Jobs resigns as Apple CEO August 24, 2011: With his health worsening, a cancer-stricken Steve Jobs steps down from his role leading Apple. Tim Cook assumes the role of Apple’s seventh CEO.

“I have always said if there ever came a day when I could no longer meet my duties and expectations as Apple’s CEO, I would be the first to let you know,” Jobs writes in his retirement letter to the Apple board. “Unfortunately that day has come.”

Apple terminates contracts of people hired to listen to Siri recordings

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HomePod siri
Contractors listened to around 1,000 Siri recordings each shift.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

Apple has laid off the contractors whose job it was to listen to Siri recordings to improve the quality of Apple’s voice assistant.

Contractors in Ireland had their fixed term contracts “abruptly terminated” this week. This followed Apple suspending the practice last month. During each shift, employees supposedly listened to 1,000 Siri recordings.

Tim Cook ‘heartbroken’ over the death of European privacy regulator

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Giovanni Buttarelli
Tim Cook with his friend Giovanni Buttarelli.
Photo: Tim Cook/Twitter

Tim Cook has tweeted his condolences following the death of EU data protection regulator Giovanni Buttarelli. Buttarelli passed away on August 20 at the age of 62.

In a recent tweet, Cook described himself as “heartbroken by the loss of my friend.” He credited Buttarelli with advancing “the cause of privacy in Europe and around the world.”

Today in Apple history: iPad takes to the skies with United Airlines

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United Airlines iPad
If only they had known about the iPad Air...
Photo: United Airlines

23 Today in Apple history: United Airlines will issue iPads to pilots August 23, 2011: United Airlines says it will hand out 11,000 iPads for its pilots. It’s the largest rollout yet of Apple tablets as a replacement for the weighty flight bags previously carried by pilots.

Going paperless saves around 16 million sheets of paper each year, the equivalent of 1,900 trees not cut down. The weight difference between the 1.5-pound iPad and the 40-pound flight bag also saves 326,000 gallons of jet fuel per year!

Apple launches new beta version of its iCloud web portal

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iCloud new version
The new iCloud interface.
Screenshot: Apple/Cult of Mac

Apple has launched a new beta version of its iCloud web portal. It includes a new background, revamped Reminders app, and new launch screen.

The change ditches the bubble-filled blue backdrop the iCloud web portal had before. Instead, there’s now a simple minimalist white background.

The average iPhone has been active for 18 months

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iPhone XS box gold
People are holding onto their smartphones for longer than ever.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

The average iPhone has been active for 18 months, a new report from Strategy Analytics suggests. That compares to 16.5 months for Samsung handsets.

Overall, it seems that people are upgrading their phones at a slower rate. That’s reportedly as a result of “diminishing innovation,” which provides less of a reason to do so. It also likely has a whole lot to do with increased prices.

You can now pre-order Powerbeats Pro in new colors

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Powerbeats Pro Moss 1
Headphones will ship August 30.
Photo: Apple

Apple’s acclaimed Powerbeats Pro wireless headphones are now available to pre-order in ivory, moss, and navy color options. Previously, they were only available in black.

The wireless headphones retail for $249.95. They will start shipping August 30, and will arrive in Apple Stores on that same day as well.

Tim Cook has Trump on speed dial

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Donald Trump speaks to supporters at an immigration policy speech at the Phoenix Convention Center in Arizona.
Tim Cook has no problem picking up the iPhone to call President Trump.
Photo: Gage Skidmore/Flickr CC

President Donald Trump and Tim Apple, err, Tim Cook are BFFs. Well, according to Trump at least.

Describing Cook as a “great executive,” Trump says the Apple CEO isn’t afraid to pick up the phone and call whenever there’s something on his mind. “He calls me, and others don’t,” Trump said, comparing Cook to other execs.