Vanity Fair Cover Spread Dedicated to Taylor Swift and Apple

10 hours, 44 minutes ago · Bryan Chaffin · Cool Stuff Found

Taylor Swift is featured in the September issue of Vanity Fair in a cover piece titled, "Taylor Swift Reveals How She Stood Up to Apple." In it, she revelaled that she was scared of a backlash against the open letter she wrote ciriticizing Apple for not paying royalties to music streamerd during an Apple Music trial period, and surprised at the warm reaction it received. My favorite line was, "Apple treated me like I was a voice of a creative community that they actually cared about,. And I found it really ironic that the multi-billion-dollar company reacted to criticism with humility, and the start-up with no cash flow [Spotify] reacted to criticism like a corporate machine." It's a good read.

Apple Has the Rights to Launch More Beats Stations

10 hours, 53 minutes ago · Bryan Chaffin · Cool Stuff Found

Apple's licensing deals with the music labels allow the company to launch additional Beats stations whenever it wants. Citing unnamed sourced, The Verge reported that Apple has the power to launch new stations—thinks Beats 2, Beats 3, Beats Reggae, or even Beats Death Metal—without having to renegotiate. Beats 1 is Apple's radio-station-format show that is live around the world for 12 hours per day, and then repeated for the other 12 hours. It has been highly praised, and may well be the most-liked feature of Apple Music, which was rolled out in late June. Even the record labels are pleased, according to The Verge's sources.

Apple’s Stock Drops 3%, Enters Correction Territory

11 hours, 9 minutes ago · Bryan Chaffin · Apple Stock Watch

Five Day Chart for $AAPL Ending August 4th, 2015

Shares in Apple Inc. have taken a bit of a beating in the last two weeks of trading, losing some 12 percent of their value. The stock has been pressured by worries about iPhone growth, concern that Apple Watch won't be a revenue game changer, and ever-present concerns about China's economy, but what sent investors into a tizzy Tuesday was $AAPL falling below its 200 day moving average.

PDFpen 7 for Mac: $37

4:49 PM EDT, Aug. 4th, 2015 · Bryan Chaffin · TMO Deals

PDFpen 7 Icon

PDFpen 7 for Mac from Smile Software is one of those must-have products if you work with PDF documents, and I am delighted to let you know we have a deal on it today. This software lets you edit PDFs, export to either Word format or PDF, block or erase sensitive information, and much more. It retails for $75, but with our deal you can get it for $37, just under half off. Check it out.

TMO Daily Observations 2015-08-04: Apple’s MVNO Plans, Thunderstrike 2

1:13 PM EDT, Aug. 4th, 2015 · Jeff Gamet · Daily Observations Podcast

Daily Observations Podcast

Reports have been circulating for years that Apple wants to start its own virtual cell service provider platform and this time it may really happen. John Martellaro and Bryan Chaffin join Jeff Gamet to explain why Apple may be getting on the MVNO bandwagon and why it makes sense, plus they explain why you don't need to freak out over the Thunderstrike 2 malware threat.

Thunderstrike 2 Could Attack Your Mac, but not Today

10:14 AM EDT, Aug. 4th, 2015 · Jeff Gamet · News

Thunderstrike could use Thunderbolt accessories to infect your Mac's firmware

Prepare for doomsday because there's a new Mac security threat that targets Thunderbolt to deliver its pox-laden payload to destroy your computer—or so some medial outlets would have you believe. The threat, dubbed Thunderstrike was first revealed at the beginning of the year as a proof of concept, and now the developers have a new version called Thunderstrike 2 that can target computers through malicious websites.

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Here's the tl;dr version: Yes, Thunderstrike is a real security threat for the Mac and other PCs. No, it isn't in the wild pillaging, burning down villages, and wreaking havok on your computer.

iOS: Using Siri to Find Apps, Books, and Music

8:57 AM EDT, Aug. 4th, 2015 · Melissa Holt · TMO Quick Tip

iOS 8 icon

If you're new to the iPhone or the iPad, you may not know just how magical using Siri can be. Need directions? Easy peasy. Want to call someone? Done. In today's Quick Tip, though, we're going to cover a little-known feature: Using Siri to search the App Store, the iTunes Store, or the iBooks Store. Never before has spending your money been easier!

Apple Reportedly Testing MVNO Carrier Service in U.S.

8:41 PM EDT, Aug. 3rd, 2015 · Bryan Chaffin · Cool Stuff Found

Apple is in "talks" with carrier services to launch its own Apple-branded wireless service, according to BusinessInsider (BI). Citing unnamed sources "close to Apple," BI said that the talks revolved around an Apple-branded mobile virtual network operator service, or MVNO. This would mean that Apple would lease bandwidth from companies like AT&T, Sprint, Verizon, and/or T-Mobile, and repackage it as its own carrier service. This sort of service is what powers Walmart's StraightTalk, TracFone, and a host of others. According to BI, iOS devices with an Apple SIM card would automatically switch customers to whatever network had the best signal at that moment. Furthermore, Apple is already testing such a service in the U.S., and is talking to carriers in Europe. Check out BI.

Apple Buys 43 Acres in San Jose, Enough to Turn Spaceship HQ into a Fleet

8:04 PM EDT, Aug. 3rd, 2015 · Bryan Chaffin · News

Land Development in San Jose, with Properties Owned or Leased by Apple

Apple has purchased 43 acres in San Jose, California, a plot of land big enough to hold a building as large as its massive Apple Campus 2, the so-called Spaceship HQ. The spot is the first known land purchase by Apple in San Jose, but it's right next door to 300,000 square feet of office space recently leased by the company.

Apple’s ‘Ecosystem’ Developer Video

6:02 PM EDT, Aug. 3rd, 2015 · Bryan Chaffin · Cool Stuff Found

Apple has a cool video on its developer siste called Ecosystem, as noted by Redditor hollowgram. I'm not sure when it was posted, and I wasn't able to find it on any of the sub pages of Apple's Developer Videos site, but I believe it was made for WWDC 2015 (Apple's WWDC 2015 developer video page). Whenever it was made, it focuses on how developers and end-users are able to make more out of Apple's ecosystem because it's just that, a true ecosystem. Apple doesn't haven't a sharing feature built into the videos posted to its developer site, but you can click through and watch it.

TigerVPN Lite Lifetime Subscription: $29

4:15 PM EDT, Aug. 3rd, 2015 · Bryan Chaffin · TMO Deals

TigerVPN on MacBook

We have a deal for you today for a lifetime subscription to TigerVPN. With this service, you can connect to any of TigerVPN’s 61 servers around the world to get fast, private access that is encrypted and free from location restrictions. It supports multiple encryption methods, too. Through our deal, you can get a lifetime subscription for $29. Check out the details on the deal listing.

How to Turn Your iPhone into a Hologram Projector

11:17 AM EDT, Aug. 3rd, 2015 · Jeff Gamet · Cool Stuff Found

You can turn your iPhone into a hologram projector, and it's surprisingly easy to do. Seriously. And it's frakking cool! All you need is an old CD jewel case, a sharp knife, a piece of graph paper for a template, and some tape. You'll need some videos, like those found in a couple collections on YouTube, to show off your awesome iPhone hologram projector. Now all we need is the message R2 played for Obi Wan Kenobi. Some one get on that.

Siri Wants to Transcribe Your Voicemails

9:40 AM EDT, Aug. 3rd, 2015 · Jeff Gamet · News

iOS 10 may turn your voicemails into text

People like leaving voicemail but don't like listening to them, so Apple is working on a new feature that lets Siri become your own personal transcription service. Apple hopes to roll out what's been dubbed at iCloud Voicemail in 2016, which means come next year you won't have to listen to your friend's messages ever again.

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I like to say three random words when leaving Google Voice messages, like "shoe, carrot, penguin." Google Voice is horrible at transcribing that. I can't wait to try it on iCloud Voicemail.

Rachio Iro - The Smart Sprinkler Controller

10:30 AM EDT, Aug. 1st, 2015 · Juan Collao · How-To

Rachio Iro App Screenshot

Think home automation can only be used inside your home? Juan Collao explains how watering your lawn is one area you absolutely must automate in a smart, connected way. He has the device to do it with, too: Iro from Rachio.

Apple Has Starring Role in New Crypto War

10:00 PM EDT, Jul. 31st, 2015 · Bryan Chaffin · Analysis

Watching Eye Behind an iPhone Screen

It seems safe to say a new round of the Crypto Wars is in full gear. In fact, let's officially call it Crypto Wars 2.0, because proxy parties are keeping the fight simmering in the background between full on salvos from the main parties involved. Meanwhike, Apple maintains its starring role in the fight due to end-to-end encryption built into iOS and OS X.