How the movie Her inspired Apple to create a better Siri

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The iPhone's home button could be going away.
Siri is set to get some big upgrades with iOS 11.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

For its next act with Siri, Apple is taking some cues from one of the tech world’s biggest sources of inspiration: Hollywood.

With the release of iOS 11 later this month, Siri is set to get some big upgrades. The most notable will be the AI helper’s silky-smooth voice. And according to one Apple exec, the movie Her played a big role in helping the company figure out the changes they should make.

Hollywood wants Apple to sell movies within weeks of theater debuts

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Apple TV Dark Mode
The wait for new movies could be just two weeks.
Photo: Apple

Hollywood is pushing for iTunes to show the latest blockbuster movies just weeks after they hit the theater.

Sources say a deal between Apple and a number of major studios could be signed as early as next year without the blessing of theater chains. However, talks are currently held up over the price that Hollywood wants to charge for new rentals.

Apple gear looks impossibly cool in classic movies

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Laurel and Hardy
Laurel and Hardy using an iPhone is a crazy sight.
Photo: Pablo Larrocha

Remember the time Laurel and Hardy rocked an iPhone in one of their movies? Or when Audrey Hepburn and Julie Andrews used one of Apple’s handsets to snap a selfie at the 1965 Oscars?

Obviously such scenes can’t be real — but that’s not stopped a bunch of 2017-era Apple gear showing up in classic movies, thanks to one Apple fan’s work.

Today in Apple history: iTunes puts the hurt on DVDs

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iTunes movie
iTunes getting day-and-date releases for new movies was a big deal.
Photo: Apple

May1 May 1, 2008: The iTunes Store takes a gigantic step toward cinematic relevancy, selling new movies on the day of their DVD releases for the very first time.

“We’re thrilled to bring iTunes Store customers new films for purchase day-and-date with the DVD release,” Eddy Cue says. “We think movie fans will love being able to buy their favorites from major and independent studios.”

Movies out that week include Cloverfield, Juno, Alvin and the Chipmunks and American Gangster.

Senior Apple execs fight for Hollywood deals

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Eddy Cue
Eddy Cue is one of three Apple chiefs trying to secure original content.
Photo: CNBC

Three senior Apple executives are in talks with Hollywood’s “most successful” TV and movie producers over original content for Apple TV, according to a new report.

Each member of the trio, which includes Eddy Cue, Apple’s senior vice president of internet software and services, is so desperate to secure the first deal that they supposedly are fighting against each other.

Apple pitches Hollywood on rushing movies to iTunes

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Apple wants a deal with studio execs to bring high-priced movie rentals to iTunes within days of release.
Apple wants a deal with studio execs to bring high-priced movie rentals to iTunes within days of release.
Photo: William Iven/UnSplash

Apple and Hollywood are reportedly in talks to provide home-video rentals of movies as little as two weeks after theatrical release.

Studio heads from Warner Bros., Universal Pictures and 21st Century Fox have indicated recently they are looking for deals. Two unidentified sources close to the talks told Bloomberg News the studios are considering partnering with Apple and iTunes.

Gwyneth Paltrow is bringing her coding skills to ‘Planet of the Apps’

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planet of the apes with tim cook
Welcome to our new world Gwyneth.
Photo: Twentieth Century Fox/Apple

Apple has signed Hollywood superstar Gwyneth Paltrow to join its unscripted series ‘Planet of the Apps’.

Paltrow will be joined by will.i.am and serial entrepreneur Gary Vaynerchuk on the show where all three will serve as mentors and advisors to app developers in the series that will reportedly act as a launch pad to exceptional developers.

Apple is secretly planning to take over Hollywood 

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Apple TV might get exclusive TV shows.
Apple TV might get exclusive TV shows.
Photo: Apple

Hollywood’s top filmmakers held secret meetings with Apple at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, according to a new report that claims Apple is planning to make a big play to take on Netflix and Amazon Prime Video by creating its own original TV shows and movies.

Apple hosted a secret ‘iTunes Lounge’ at Sundance for a number of invitation-only events for film makers, producers, actors, and other A-list talent to hear the company’s pitch on how it plans to create a ton of original content that will be exclusively available on Apple TV.

Meet the official cast of the Steve Jobs movie

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The official cast of Steve Jobs has been announced. Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac
The official cast of Steve Jobs has been announced. Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

Aaron Sorkin’s Steve Jobs movie has been down a hard road on its way to production. Disasters like fickle actors and directors have plagued the project, but filming is finally underway in San Francisco as we speak, and for the first time ever, we have an official cast list.

Universal Pictures announced the official cast for the movie this week as filming has already wrapped up at Jobs’ parents garage. The logline confirms the film will be “set backstage at three iconic product launches and ending in 2001 with the unveiling of the iPod. The film takes us behind the scenes of the digital revolution to paint an intimate portrait of the brilliant man at its epicenter.”

We already knew Michael Fassbender has been tapped to play Jobs, but the official cast list includes a few surprises — like the three different actresses that will play Steve’s daughter — and a veteran Apple PR guru we didn’t see coming.

Here’s the full cast alongside the real-life people they’ll play:

The App Store makes more money than Hollywood

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App Store is now the world's top entertainer. Photo: Buster Hein
App Store is now the world's top entertainer. Photo: Buster Hein