Recent Articles By Jeff Gamet [RSS]

Hilton to Turn Your iPhone into Your Hotel Room Key

4:39 PM, Jul. 28th, 2014 · Jeff Gamet · News

Your iPhone is already an iPod, a phone, and an Internet connection device, and soon it'll be your room key at Hilton hotels. The company is launching a new service where iPhone owners can choose their room and check in, and next year they'll be able to use their smartphone as a room key, too.

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Remote room selection and check-in, plus the ability to use my iPhone as a room key? This is going to be awesome at trade shows and conferences -- assuming you can get an Internet connection.

TMO Daily Observations: 2014-07-28

2:02 PM, Jul. 28th, 2014 · Jeff Gamet · Daily Observations Podcast

Apple just bought BookLight and is in the process of buying Swell. John Martellaro and Kelly Guimont join Jeff Gamet to talk about what Apple's latest media acquisitions mean for the ebook, news and podcasting world, as well as end users. Plus, bonus oblique Joss Whedon and Space Ghost references.

Apple Ready to Buy Swell Talk Show App in $30M Deal

10:55 AM, Jul. 28th, 2014 · Jeff Gamet · News

The radio news talk show listening app Swell is about to be snapped up by Apple in a US$30 million deal. Swell is known for its ability to build custom news playlists with content from sources such NPR, BBC, and ABC and play back that content through its iPhone app.

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First Apple buys BookLamp, and now it's about to close a deal with Swell. Purchases like these sure make it look like Apple wants to find a better way for consumers to discover online content and books.

Report Claims Retina MacBook Pro Speed Bump Coming Tuesday

10:09 AM, Jul. 28th, 2014 · Jeff Gamet · Rumor

Apple is reportedly planning on giving the Retina MacBook Pro a speed bump on Tuesday with updated Intel Haswell Core i7 processors. The new models will still be available in 13-inch and 15-inch models, and will all come with at least 16 GB RAM.

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Assuming the report about tomorrow's Retina MacBook Pro refresh is accurate, it's welcome even if it isn't dramatic.

EU Greenlights Apple’s Beats Acquisition

9:04 AM, Jul. 28th, 2014 · Jeff Gamet · News

Apple made a big leap forward in its planned US$3 billion purchase of Beats Electronics and Beats Music when the European Commission announced on Monday that is has approved the deal. The Commission doesn't see a combined Apple and Beats as a serious threat to the headphone market, and said there are plenty of competitors who make substantially different products.

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With the EC's approval out of the way Apple is a step closer to closing its Beats purchase. Next stop: U.S. approval.

Judge Cote Calls Apple Ebook Settlement Unfair to Consumers

1:42 PM, Jul. 25th, 2014 · Jeff Gamet · News

Judge Denise Cote, the Federal Judge who ruled Apple orchestrated a conspiracy with publishers to drive up the price of books, is concerned that the settlement the iPhone and iPad maker agreed to in a related class action lawsuit will be unfair to consumers. Apple agreed to pay US$400 million in the settlement, but that number drops to $50 million plus attorney fees if the Appeals Court sends the case back for further proceedings.

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Both Apple and the states found the settlement terms reasonable, so maybe Judge Cote is being a little over critical there. The stipulation that Apple doesn't have to pay interest during the Appeals process seems like something she's justified in complaining about.

TMO Daily Observations: 2014-07-25

1:15 PM, Jul. 25th, 2014 · Jeff Gamet · Daily Observations Podcast

Just because an analyst says Apple could be doomed doesn't mean we'll all be using Android smartphones in three years. Bryan Chaffin and Kelly Guimont join Jeff Gamet dissect what Noster Capital's Pedro de Noronha really meant when he said Apple could be obsolete in three years, plus they look at Judge Denise Cote's comments on Apple's ebook price fixing class action lawsuit settlement.

comiXology Intros DRM-free Digital Comic Backups

10:24 AM, Jul. 25th, 2014 · Jeff Gamet · News

Amazon's digital comicbook distribution company comiXology announced on Thursday that is is now offering customers DRM-free copies of the comics they buy for backup. Users can download PDF and CBZ versions of the comics they have already purchased, although not every comic sold is available.

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Offering downloadable files for backup is great. What's even greater is that they're DRM-free so you can read your comics on any device that has a PDF or CBZ-compatible reader app.

Apple’s Yosemite Beta Site Conks Out Over Heavy Demand

2:42 PM, Jul. 24th, 2014 · Jeff Gamet · News

If you're planning on downloading Apple's just released public beta of OS X Yosemite, think again. The public beta site crashed thanks to heavy traffic only hours after the beta was released and eventually Apple replaced the error users saw with its familiar "We'll be back" image.

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It's as if millions of voices cried out in terror and were suddenly silenced.

TMO Daily Observations: 2014-07-24

2:13 PM, Jul. 24th, 2014 · Jeff Gamet · Daily Observations Podcast

Word on the street says Apple is teaming up with Visa and other transaction processing companies to turn the iPhone 6 into your new digital wallet. Bryan Chaffin, Dave Hamilton and Kelly Guimont look at the prospect of using our iPhones as credit cards, and they talk about Apple's just released public beta of OS X Yosemite, too.