AT&T will finally be lifting its almost 3-year ban on FaceTime (and other pre-installed video chat services like Google Hangouts on ANdroid) for its customers on grandfathered unlimited data plans. Over time, AT&T has made stock video chat apps available on its cellular network only to customers on tiered data plans, or its newer Mobile Share plans, while unlimited users looked on in disappointment. That all changes starting next month, when customers with LTE devices get access to pre-installed video chat services:
For video chat apps that come pre-loaded on devices, we currently give all OS and device makers the ability for those apps to work over cellular for our customers who are on Mobile Share or Tiered plans. Apple, Samsung and BlackBerry have chosen to enable this for their pre-loaded video chat apps. And by mid-June, we’ll have enabled those apps over cellular for our unlimited plan customers who have LTE devices from those three manufacturers.
So if you've got an iPhone 5, you're in luck. If you are on an older iPhone 4S or iPhone 4, you have a bit more of a wait ahead of you. In fact, it appears that even if you have a current LTE device that isn't made by Apple, BlackBerry, or Samsung, you've got a wait ahead of you. Recent buyer of the awesome HTC One? Sorry:
Throughout the second half of this year, we plan to enable pre-loaded video chat apps over cellular for all our customers, regardless of data plan or device; that work is expected to be complete by year end.
We've been getting reports that some AT&T customers with unlimited plans and LTE devices are already seeing FaceTime over Cellular enabled.
Read More | The Verge
The rumor mill has been buzzing with regards to significant changes that will be coming to AppleCare, Apple's popular standard and extended warranty program. Interestingly, it appears that AppleCare support for iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad is about to become much more of a pain for customers. This marks a significant change where Apple will seemingly make a decision to make the customer service experience worse rather than better, all in the name of saving a ton of money.
Despite being the last major carrier to pick up the iPhone, T-Mobile is still seeing massive success thanks to the Apple smartphone. In fact, the company revealed that it has sold over 500,000 iPhone 5 units since the device went on sale on April 12th, less than a month ago. On that day, T-Mobile locations had lines out the door, which is almost unheard of for the carrier. Technically, the iPhone 5 went on sale after the end of the first quarter, so those 500,000 sales weren't accounted for. We will have to wait until next quarter to see how the iPhone is affecting T-Mobile revenue.
Read More | T-Mobile
We got a look at the Canopy Sensus Touch Case, and walked away impressed. The Sensus Touch Case gives iPhone users 10-point touch input along the back and sides of the device, which means you can do things like play games by swiping along the back of the iPhone, leaving the display free and clear of your fingers. You can also do things like snap images by tapping the side of the phone, or zoom in and out of objects with a slide of your finger. Expect to see the case launch later this summer, priced somewhere between $59 and $99.
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Tickets for Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference are now on sale. Last year, WWDC tickets sold out within two hours of going on sale, and that was without a pre-announcement of when they'd drop. This year, in an attempt to make sure everyone is ready, the company announced yesterday that tickets would go on sale this morning. Apple will show off both OS X 10.9 and iOS 7 at the event, with developer preview betas being available that same day. If you want to be there, we suggest you go get your tickets. Like, right now. In fact, it may already be too late.
In order to buy a ticket, you've gotta me a member of Apple's iOS Developer Program, iOS Developer Enterprise Program, or the Mac Developer Program as of yesterday's announcement. You can buy one ticket per person, or five per organization, and they cost $1,599 each.
The fine folks at Tapbots have updated their popular iOS twitter client, Tweetbot, to version 2.8 for iOS. The update adds a new tab specifically for media timeline consumption, showing just the images and videos from those you follow. Additionally, you can now swipe right to left on any given tweet to reveal retweets and the number of users who favorited. Viewing photos has been made frictionless by eliminating the transition to another screen, much like the image viewer behavior of Tweetbot for OS X. Direct Tweetbot download links here: iPad and iPhone / iPod Touch.
What's New in Version 2.8
- New media timeline. Scroll to the top of a timeline and switch to the new media view (next to the search box). This view displays only supported image and video tweets.
- Completely redesigned image viewer
- Tweet/status detail view now displays the number of Favs and Retweets
- Fixed Instagram Previews
- Various other bug fixes
Read More | Tweetbot
Apple is in the midst of its Q2 2013 earnings call, highlighted by 37.4 million iPhones and 19.5 million iPads sold. This represents record Q2 iPhone and iPad sales. Overall, Apple posted $43.6 billion in revenue, of which $9.5 billion was profit. While many analysts were predicting a crash-and-burn quarter, this is, instead, still growth. However, the growth rate has definitely slowed to the lowest it has been in years. To compare to last year, Q2 2012, Apple earned $39.2 billion in revenue and $11.6 billion in profit.
As for other products, Apple sold 3.95 million Macs, compared to 4 million last year. iPod sales continue to slow, with 5.6 million Q2 2013 sales compared to 7.7 million as the same time last year.
Did you know that you can get free 4G data over WiMAX (and, eventually, LTE) for use with your iPod touch, iPhone, PC, Mac, and tablet? It's true, and the company that's bringing to you is called FreedomPop. Currently, FreedomPop offera 500 MB of free WiMAX data to customers per month, and you can earn even more monthly free data by referring friends to the service. If you run out and need more during a month, you can buy more. Get a look at how it all works in this episode!
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Analysts are reporting that the Apple iPhone 5S is set to be delayed because of problems Apple is having with integrating a fingerprint sensor. The issue seemingly stems from the color coating of the paint and getting it to work with the rumored fingerprint sensor that will be a part of the iPhone 5S. The end result is that the next iPhone, the lower-cost budget iPhone, and the next iPad mini will all launch closer to September rather than the June/July timeframe.
One important note here: Apple has never specified a release date for the iPhone 5S (or even the existence of the device itself,) so to call this a delay seems disingenuous. These delays are really based on the best guesses of the analysts in the first place. In other words, this "delay" really is the analysts saying their guesses were wrong, but not taking the blame.
Read More | Reuters
The big iPhone rumor this year is that Apple will release a lower-cost model with a polycarbonate plastic backing, similar to the one found on the iPhone 3G and 3GS. Today, an image has cropped up that purports to show the rear shell of the budget model iPhone. As you can see, it's similar in size to the iPhone 4, and is mostly flat, rather than the rounded 3G/3GS design. Tactus, the company that is making the claims, also has other details:
I’ve also heard on the grapevine that the alleged budget iPhone will have an A5 processor like the iPad Mini with a 32nm diecast. It’s also rumoured it will have a 3.5 inch retina screen, much like the 4S, but not as big as the iPhone 5 … I’ve also discovered the factory producing this secretive project have confirmed the device will be available in Black, White, Blue, Red and Yellow.
A multi-colored low-cost iPhone? What do you think?
Read More | Tactus