Today in Apple history: Apple buys ‘iPhone’ web domain

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iPhone SE 7
Do you remember when you first heard the name iPhone?
Photo: Sam Mills/Cult of Mac

December 14: Today in Apple history: Apple buys 'iPhone' web domain December 14, 1999: Apple acquires the domain name www.iphone.org, prompting years of speculation that Cupertino is considering building a cellphone.

While the news generates interest, some take it as a warning sign. Apple only recently abandoned the kind of non-computer gimmicks like games consoles, PDAs and digital cameras that proved to be dead ends earlier in the decade.

An Apple phone could never be a thing, right?

Apple buys startup that makes podcasts searchable

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Podcasts 1
Apple wants to make its Podcasts service even better.
Photo: Pop Up Archive

Apple has acquired Pop Up Archive, an online platform that builds tools for transcribing audio files and making them searchable.

One of the startup’s most significant tools is a podcast search engine called Audiosear.ch, which closed its doors November 28. The service issued “Buzz Scores” for podcasts, based on their charting on iTunes and reviews.

Apple may be ditching power chip partner as it looks to build its own

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chips
Apple is moving more and more of its chip development in-house.
Photo: Intel

Apple is apparently dropping Dialog Semiconductor, its U.K.-based power management chipmaker. If true, the move would lend increased credibility to rumors that Cupertino plans to design its own chips for future iPhones.

Dialog Semiconductor says that, for now, it continues to provide chips to Apple. But the company’s chief executive acknowledged that this arrangement could well change “in the next few years.”

Today in Apple history: Cupertino salivates over the restaurant biz

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cafe2
Apple Cafes were set to sweep the world. They didn't.
Photo: Apple/Mega Bytes International

November 12: Today in Apple history: Apple Cafes November 12, 1996: Apple lays out a wild plan to get into the restaurant business, saying it will open a chain of Apple Cafes.

A bit like Apple Stores without the computers and iPhones for sale, the restaurants would open in cities all around the world. The first, Apple says, will be a 15,000-square-foot restaurant in Los Angeles, opening in late 1997.

None of this winds up happening.

Apple gives Drake blank check to make films

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Drake talks Apple Music at WWDC.
Drake and Apple have been close for years.
Photo: Apple

Apple plans to use Toronto rapper Drake to dominate an all-new domain: original video.

In a new interview, Drake revealed that he has several video projects in the works with both Apple and Netflix that he plans to tackle over the next year while taking a break from music.

Today in Apple history: iTunes sales hit astonishing new heights

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iTunespic
iTunes coming to Windows proved a smart move for Apple.
Photo: Apple

November 6 Today in Apple historyNovember 6, 2003: After porting iTunes to Windows, Apple sets a new record for digital music sales: a massive 1.5 million downloads in one week.

Bringing iTunes to PC users opens up a new, lucrative market for Apple. The record-breaking sales clock in at five times more than the 300,000 downloads Napster (remember it?) achieved in its debut week. And 1.5 million sales is double the 600,000 iTunes downloads per week Apple reported selling to Mac users prior to the Windows release.

Today in Apple history: Apple begins retail venture inside CompUSA

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Desiring more control over how Macs got sold, Apple turned to CompUSA.
Desiring more control over how Macs got sold, Apple turned to CompUSA.
Photo: Coolcaesar/Wikipedia CC

November 4: Today in Apple history: Apple CompUSA November 4, 1997: Apple unveils its plan to open small “store within a store” sections inside CompUSA outlets around the United States.

In a step toward the flagship Apple stores that would launch four years later, Cupertino-trained employees staff these mini-stores. The move gives Apple a bit more control over the way its products get displayed and demoed to consumers.

Today in Apple history: iPad mini arrives

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The iPad mini made a big splash for such a tiny device.
The iPad mini made a big splash for such a tiny device.
Image: Apple

November 2: Today in Apple history: iPad mini arrives November 2, 2012: The first-generation iPad mini goes on sale, shrinking both the size and the price tag of Apple’s groundbreaking tablet computer.

With a reduced screen size of 7.9 inches — instead of the then-standard 9.7 inches — the iPad mini is the fifth iPad to be released by Apple. It’s praised for being Apple’s most affordable iPad ever, although some people complain about its lack of a Retina display.

Why Apple short-circuited the media machine for iPhone X reviews

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Apple's new strategy for iPhone X reviews blew up the system.
Apple's new strategy for iPhone X reviews blew up the system.
Photo: Gerd Altmann/Pixabay CC

Anybody who thinks Apple can’t innovate should look in awe at the fecal hurricane whipped up by the company’s unorthodox iPhone X marketing plan.

By giving popular YouTubers early access to the next-gen iPhone, and allowing them to “scoop” the old-school journalists traditionally granted such preferential treatment, Cupertino upended the typical review cycle.

Apple apparently bruised a few fragile egos in the process. Frankly, it’s hilarious watching the ensuing media meltdown.