Apple’s (Product)RED Contributions Top $70M

12:56 PM, Apr. 4th, 2014 · · iObserver

Apple may not toot its own horn when it comes to charitable contributions, but that isn't stopping (Product)RED from announcing the iPhone and iPad maker has already given the organization over US$70 million to help fight AIDS worldwide. That money came via special (Product)RED versions of the iPod lineup.

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It isn't just Apple that made $70 million in RED contributions possible. That money ultimately came from shoppers buying the RED versions of iPods, so go you for doing your part to help out.

Microsoft Office for iPad Downloads Top 12M

8:59 AM, Apr. 4th, 2014 · · iObserver

Downloads for Microsoft's Office for iPad hit the 12 million mark in just one week, showing that despite the company's late entry into the mobile game, there's still plenty of consumer interest. The apps are free to download, but thanks to in-app purchases, they quickly hit the top grossing list, too.

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Microsoft may have been late to the game, but it's clear there were plenty of iPad owners who wanted Office apps straight from the source instead of from third-party developers.

Apple Buys UK Voice Recognition Company Novauris

8:00 PM, Apr. 3rd, 2014 · · iObserver

Apple

Apple CEO Tim Cook has made another corporate purchase, a UK voice recognition firm called Novauris. Apple confirmed it without specifying terms or the purpose to which it will put Novauris, but it's a fair bet that Siri is its name-o.

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I've long seen Siri as Apple's slow motion leapfrog of existing computing paradigms, and I expect the service to grow and to morph into something that does far, far more than it does today. Acquisitions like this one will play a big role in helping Apple advance that agenda, and I expect to see more in the relatively near future.

Apple Will Need to Up Its TV Game to Compete with Amazon Fire TV

5:52 PM, Apr. 3rd, 2014 · · iObserver

Amazon Fire TV

Amazon announced the Fire TV on Wednesday, and once again Amazon has taken aim at Apple and come out swinging. It’s another box to hook up to the telly, but this one offers a lot. Many consumers will find it compelling, and that means Apple should pay attention.

Apple Reportedly in Talks To Purchase Renesas Mobile

7:40 PM, Apr. 2nd, 2014 · · iObserver

Apple has opened discussions to purchase the majority of Renesas SP, a Japanese chip maker in dire financial straits. According to Reuters, Apple wants the 55 percent stake that Renesas SP owns in another company called Renesas SP Driver, the largest supplier of chips that control mobile screens to all three iPhone suppliers: Sharp, LG Display, and Japan Display Inc.

Fantastical 2 for iPad: It’s Finally Here

8:55 AM, Apr. 2nd, 2014 · · iObserver

Fantastical is one of our favorite calendar apps for the Mac and iPhone because of its great interface and natural language entry system, and now -- finally -- it's available for the iPad, too. Flexibits introduced Fantastical 2 for the iPad on Wednesday with a special third-off price for a limited time.

Apple Argues that Copying Was Built into Samsung’s Development Process

9:48 PM, Apr. 1st, 2014 · · iObserver

Apple v. Samsung

Apple told a jury on Tuesday that Samsung didn't just copy Apple's intellectual property, but that deliberately copying the iPhone was part of Samsung's "development process." The accusation came during Apple's opening statements in the second big patent infringement trial between the two companies.

Apple Launches iPad Air and iPad mini with TD-LTE for China

7:34 PM, Mar. 31st, 2014 · · iObserver

Apple in China

Apple announced on Monday (technically, the announcement was made on Tuesday in China) the release of TD-LTE models of iPad Air and iPad mini with Retina Display in China.    The models will increase Apple's footprint in China, where cellular networks have been built with different wireless technologies than the rest of the world.