MyAppleMenu - Wed, Jan 14, 2015

Wed, Jan 14, 2015 Day of the Free Singles No More

So, Apple has ended its promotion that gave away free singles weekly on the iTunes store, as reported by various websites including MacRumors. This was a promotion that started 11 years ago, we are reminded, the year of the Monkey.

Ah, 2004. The iPhone was still a prototype in Apple's labs, probably more like an iPod touch or a Newton than a phone. The iPod mini was the hot new product from Apple, and audio blogging has just been renamed podcasts. This was a time when free (legally) meant something, and there are still many people who knew what is a "single."

Today, free is everywhere; concerts and tours are where the real money is, and we rent music and listen to radios (the new version). I can't imagine this promotion is doing too much to bring in customers for either Apple or the artists, so maybe it is a good time to end this promotion.


To Beat the iPhone, You Have to Beat the iPhone's Camera

Vlad Savov, The Verge:

The effortlessness of taking good pictures with the iPhone is probably that phone’s most underrated quality. And yet, its importance grows with every passing day. Consider how vital the camera in any modern smartphone is. Snapchat, Instagram, Facebook, WhatsApp, and Twitter are the most popular communication platforms, and they’re all either image-centric or moving toward a greater reliance on visuals. To get the most out of Pinterest, Tumblr, Foursquare check-ins, or Yelp restaurant reviews, you’ll want to be able to take quick and easy mobile pictures. The standard that must be reached isn’t so much about image quality as it is about quickness, predictability, and reliability — and nobody does those things better than Apple.

Thunderstrike Proof-of-Concept Attack Serious, But Limited

Rich Mogull, Tidbits:

Dubbed Thunderstrike, the Thunderbolt-based attack is limited to situations where an attacker has physical access to a Mac and enough time to run it through a reboot and firmware installation cycle. Apple has partially addressed the vulnerability in recently released hardware (the iMac with Retina 5K display and the new Mac mini) and will be rolling out fixes to older hardware in the future.

Why Two-Factor Authentication Isn't Protecting Your Apple Account

Dani Grant, Medium:

Even if you have 2FA enabled, Apple will not prompt for 2FA if someone is trying to login to your account on many of their services.

Apple Brings 2TB Mac Mini Configuration Back to Online Store


In its return to the Online Apple Store, [...] the 2TB Mac mini is now a Fusion Drive unit, but is again restricted to the highest-end $999 model

Siri Improvements

Siri and Google Now from John Gruber on Vimeo.

John Gruber, Daring Fireball:

I’ve noticed over the past year that Siri is getting faster — both at parsing spoken input and returning results.

If you haven't been using Siri because the performance was slow the last time you used it, it is time to try again.

Stuff For Your Computers

  • Allcast for iOS lets Apple fans easily stream their on-device photos, videos, music, not to mention content from Dropbox, Google Drive, Google+ and Picasa to a TV.
  • Plants vs Zombies 2 updated with arctic and prehistoric frostbite caves levels (Aldrin Calimlim, AppAdvice)

Apple, Google Reach New Deal to End U.S. Lawsuit Over Poaching

Dan Levine, Reuters:

In the short court filing on Tuesday, the companies said plaintiffs will file a detailed explanation of the new deal "imminently." Koh will then likely decide whether to accept or reject it.

Rumors! We Have Rumors!

I think John Gruber has the best speculation on why the rumored 12-inch MacBook only has one USB Type C port. Go listen to the latest episode of The Talk Show podcast to find out.

Parting Words

Thanks for reading.