Apple heads to court this week to battle world’s biggest tax case

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Fees Apple charges competitors to appear in the App Store are the target of an EU investigation.
Apple was handed a $14.4 billion tax bill in 2016.
Photo: rawpixel.com/Pexels CC

Apple has a fight on its hands this week as it goes to court to battle the world’s biggest tax case. The company will protest its 2016 European Union tax bill of 13 billion euros ($14.4 billion).

The EU charged Apple the money after saying it had an unfair tax arrangement with Ireland. Apple has always protested its innocence. This week, a court will start the process of deciding whether the regulators were right.

Apple premieres TV+ show Dickinson at Tribeca Festival

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Dickinson screenshot
This is the first time one of Apple TV+'s shows have been seen in public.
Photo: Apple

Apple’s original TV series Dickinson made its debut at the Tribeca TV Festival this weekend. The series is about the life of poet Emily Dickinson.

This is the first time the public has seen one of Apple’s new TV+ shows. The show will officially debut on November 1 when Apple TV+ launches.

Today in Apple history: Apple gives users a way to delete U2’s spam album

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U2
It all seemed so innocent at the time.
Photo: Apple

September 15: Today in Apple history: Apple gives users the ability to wipe U2 spam album from their iPhones September 15, 2014: Responding to its disastrous U2 album giveaway, Apple provides a tool for wiping all signs of Songs of Innocence from their iPhones.

It comes after one of the strangest PR debacles in Apple’s history. After putting a free copy of U2’s latest album on every iPhone owner’s handset as a special promotion, millions find themselves with an album they didn’t order in their iTunes library. Many weren’t happy about it.

Today in Apple history: Apple denies Steve Jobs’ love of ninja stars

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Ninja star
Jobs apparently tried to take one of these on his private jet.
Photo: SecretNinjaNews

September 14: Today in Apple history: Apple denies Steve Jobs' love of ninja stars September 14, 2010: Security workers reportedly stop Steve Jobs at Japan’s Kansai International Airport. The reason? The Apple CEO supposedly tried to bring ninja throwing stars onto his private plane while heading home from vacation.

It’s one of the most bizarre Jobs stories ever. Apple, however, quickly spoils the internet’s fun. Cupertino issues a statement describing the reports as “pure fiction” (although Apple acknowledges that Jobs visited Japan over the summer).

Congress wants to read Tim Cook’s emails for antitrust investigation

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Tim Cook with a 2018 WWDC scholarship winner.
Tim shows off the hilarious memes he's forwarded to friends. (Possibly.)
Photo: Apple

House Judiciary Committee leaders want Tim Cook to turn over his emails and other information as part of a possible antitrust investigation.

Cook is one of dozens of executives from Apple, Facebook, Google parent company Alphabet and Amazon named in the request. It follows increased scrutiny of Apple, particularly surrounding the way that it runs the App Store — and possible conflicts of interest that result.

Google agrees to pay France $1.1 billion to end tax investigation

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A group called Google You Owe Us wants $1000 each after Google invaded their privacy
Google is the latest tech giant to be fined in France.
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

Google will pay a total of $1.1 billion to end a four-year probe into its tax activities in France. This is a combination of fine and repayment of additional taxes Google didn’t pay first time around.

France and Germany have both pushed for tighter tax regulations of multination tech giants. Others — Apple included — have been charged in the past. They may have to stump up more cash in the future, too.

Dropcam founder reportedly leaving Apple

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Dropcam image
The guy who popularized home Wi-Fi cameras supposedly checks out of Cupertino.
Photo: Dropcam

Dropcam founder Greg Duffy, who went to Apple in 2017 to work on special projects, has reportedly left the company.

Google acquired Wi-Fi home camera company Dropcam in 2014. However, Duffy fell out with ex-Apple employee and Nest co-founder Tony Fadell, who managed the Dropcam team. Duffy left Google in 2015, and later labeled Fadell a “tyrant bureaucrat.”

Today in Apple history: One of Apple’s earliest rivals bites the dust

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The Osborne 1 portable computer proved ahead of its time.
Remember the Osborne 1 computer?
Photo: Tomislav Medak/Flickr CC

September 13: Today in Apple history: Osborne Computer Corporation, one of Apple's earliest rivals, bites the dust September 13, 1983: Osborne Computer Corporation, one of Apple’s early rivals, declares bankruptcy.

Many consider the company’s Osborne 1 the world’s first truly portable, full-featured computer. It packed everything users needed to set up shop at home or on the road. Alas, it didn’t last!

Apple’s leadership structure could cause headaches in the future

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Tim Cook delivers the goods at Apple's iPhone 11 event.
Tim Cook has continued a leadership structure established by Steve Jobs.
Photo: Apple

Apple’s always been a relatively flat company in terms of corporate structure. But that may be posing a challenge, as a new report on the company’s leadership suggests.

As a result of Apple’s employee growth and changes in the leadership team, many executives now have large numbers of people reporting directly to them. According to a former Apple exec, that structure may not be “particularly effective.”

Apple Online Store goes down ahead of iPhone 11 pre-orders

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Apple Store goes down
When it comes back, expect new iPhones!
Photo: Apple

Apple’s Online Apple Store has gone down ahead of the iPhone 11 pre-orders in the early hours of this morning at 5am PST.

When it comes back, customers will be free to order one of Apple’s new iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro, or iPhone 11 Pro Max handsets for delivery on September 20. Well, so long as you’re quick, that is!