Apple’s iOS 8 to Reportedly Include Shazam Music Recognition

1 hour, 2 minutes ago · · News

Apple apparently wants to make it easier for iPhone and iPad users to identify the songs they hear, so the company is reportedly planning on including Shazam's song identification technology in iOS 8. Including Shazam as a system-level feature would make it easier to answer those "what song is playing" questions, but could put a crimp in sales of competing apps.

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Including song identification in iOS 8 would give Apple yet another way to drive customers to the iTunes Store, and if that technology comes from Shazam, it'll be a hard blow for SoundHound.

Jeff Gamet Recaps Macworld/iWorld 2014 at Estes Park User Group

11:10 AM, Apr. 16th, 2014 · · News

Jeff Gamet, The Mac Observer's Managing Editor, will be speaking at the Estes Park Internet Computer User Group on Wednesday, April 16, in Estes Park, Colorado. Jeff will talk about this year's Macworld/iWorld Conference, The cool things he found on the expo floor, what you missed out on if you weren't there, and more.

Apple, Samsung Sign on for CTIA’s Smartphone Kill Switch

10:19 AM, Apr. 16th, 2014 · · News

Apple and Samsung are among the smartphone makers that have agreed to comply with CTIA's guidelines calling for a "kill switch" that renders devices useless if lost or stolen. The agreement will take effect in July 2015, and for Apple, it won't involve much more than it already offers through its Find My iPhone feature.

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Tools to help smartphone owners protect their personal information if the device is lost or stolen are great, but it doesn't seem like Find My iPhone has done much to reduce iPhone thefts. It may be a little myopic for companies and law enforcement agencies to think that will change come July 2015.

Judge Cote Denies Apple Request to Stop State Ebook Antitrust Cases

9:16 AM, Apr. 16th, 2014 · · News

Apple's attempt to dismiss the string of ebook antitrust lawsuits filed against it by several states was shot down by Federal Judge Denise Cote on Tuesday. Several state Attorneys General filed lawsuits accusing Apple of conspiring with publishers to artificially raise the price of books, and Judge Cote -- who already found Apple guilty in the antitrust case filed by the Department of Justice -- said the states can move forward with their trial scheduled for July 14.

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It's no surprise that the states get to move forward with their antitrust lawsuit because Judge Cote doesn't think Apple has been able to back up its claims that there wasn't any injury. July should be an interesting month for Apple's legal team.

LaCie Warns Customers of Year-Long Credit Card Breach

5:25 PM, Apr. 15th, 2014 · · News

Oops

LaCie warned its customers on Monday of a credit card breach that lasted almost a year. The company said that unauthorized persons gained access to customer transactions that took place between March 27th, 2013 and March 10th, 2014, and that it was taking its ecommerce service offline while, "we transition to a provider that specializes in secure payment processing services."

Amazon Smartphone Rumors Now Include Photos

2:20 PM, Apr. 15th, 2014 · · News

Amazon. Phone.

Last week we had reports of Amazon building a smartphone, this week we have more details and pictures, including notable features such as a 4.7” screen, 720p resolution, and six cameras. Yes, six.

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Amazon's smartphone sounds more legit all the time, but it's noteworthy feature of 3-D opens up a lot of questions.

Pioneer Gets in on Aftermarket Apple CarPlay

11:54 AM, Apr. 15th, 2014 · · News

Pioneer is tossing its hat into Apple's CarPlay ring with five aftermarket receivers for cars that don't ship with the feature pre-installed. CarPlay is Apple's in-dash system for linking your iPhone to your car for music playback, driving directions, and more.

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Aftermarket CarPlay systems won't be cheap, but it's great to see companies stepping up so most anyone can get in on the hands-free action. It won't be cheap, but it still costs less than buying a new car.