Tag Archive for ‘Eric Slivka’

Belkin Debuts First MFi-Certified Power Bank With Lightning Input ➝

Eric Slivka, writing for MacRumors:

Belkin today is launching the first power bank with Lightning input to be officially certified under Apple’s MFi licensing program, assuring that the product meets Apple’s standards for quality and compatibility. Belkin’s BOOST↑­CHARGE Power Bank Lightning 10K, priced at $59.99, offers 10,000 mAh of charging power and is recharged over a Lightning connector using either a USB-to-Lightning cable or a compatible Lightning dock sold separately.

I bought Aukey’s 3600 mAh power bank with Lightning input last year in my quest to go Lightning everything in my travel kit. But the Aukey isn’t MFi certified, the capacity is fairly small, and the unit tends to get hot while in use. This Belkin model looks like a great replacement and it even features LED indicator lights that give you a decent amount of granularity regarding the battery’s current charge.

I’d like to see Belkin head this direction with their Valet Charger as well, which has an Apple Watch charging pad on top. That would be an ideal travel charger for me because I wouldn’t have to clutter my bag with an Apple Watch charging cable. But the Valet Charger charges over Micro-USB and I’d likely want to keep a compatible cable in bag, which defeats the purpose. If Belkin offered a Valet Charger with Lightning input, it would be a no-brainer.

Update: Greg Morris noted on Twitter that Besiter has been selling MFi certified power banks with Lightning inputs for some time.

Ming-Chi Kuo: Apple Planning 10.5-Inch iPad Pro ➝

Eric Slivka, writing for MacRumors:

According to Kuo, Apple is aiming to introduce a new 10.5-inch iPad Pro model next year to go along with a 12.9-inch iPad Pro 2 and a “low-cost” 9.7-inch iPad model. Kuo makes no mention about the fate of the current 7.9-inch iPad mini, although many have assumed that model may be phased out as the recent 5.5-inch iPhone “Plus” models have helped lessen demand for Apple’s smallest tablet.

John Gruber thinks we’ll see a new aspect ratio for the iPad — because of how close the 9.7-inch size is to this rumored 10.5-inch device. But I’m not so sure. Apple currently sells the 11.6-inch MacBook Air alongside the 12-inch MacBook. Both of them feature the same aspect ratio — why would the iPad be any different?

Update: Apologies for the oversight, Ravi Gupta points out, on Twitter, that the 11.6-inch Air and the 12-inch MacBook do have different aspect ratios. Sounds like Gruber might be right after all.

Apple Predicted to Launch New 4-Inch iPhone in Early 2016 ➝

Eric Slivka, writing for MacRumors:

KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has released a new research report outlining his expectations for Apple’s 2016 iPhone launches, including several interesting tidbits about the upcoming devices.

First, Kuo believes Apple still has a new 4-inch iPhone in the works that “resembles an upgraded iPhone 5s”. The device is said to be targeted for launch in the first half of next year and will come equipped with an A9 processor.

Although Kuo doesn’t expect the new 4-inch device to feature 3D Touch, I couldn’t be happier to hear that Apple isn’t abandoning the smaller form factor. My fiancée is still using her two year old iPhone 5s and has been holding out hope that Apple will introduce a modern 4-inch iPhone for her to upgrade to.

Kuo claims the device is targeted for the first half of next year — if I was forced to guess, I’d say we’ll probably see it in March or April.

New iPod touch Details Surface

Jeremy Horwitz has heard from a “reliable source” that Apple will be ready to announce three new iPods as early as this month. The possible announcements include a new iPod nano, iPod touch, and a replacement for the iPod shuffle that uses the 1.7-inch touchscreen that has been floating around the internet as of late.

The other rumor of interest in Jeremy Horowitz’s rundown is that Apple is pushing up the release of a new iPhone to early 2011. He is unsure as to whether it will be a slight hardware revision to the iPhone 4 that will fix the antenna issue or if this will be more substantial, but this is what he’s hearing.

Some of these rumors are a little hard to believe, especially the ones I decided not to write about (like the seven-inch iPad or the three-inch touchscreen iPod), but the early 2011 iPhone hardware revision doesn’t seem too far-fetched. It’s not unheard of for Apple to make slight changes to their hardware mid-product cycle and it would give them an opportunity to minimize the impact of the iPhone 4’s antenna problem.

But, iLounge isn’t the only place publishing rumors about upcoming Apple products, Hardmac has received a mockup of the next-generation iPod touch which depicts a rear-facing camera and flash. Unfortunately this mockup doesn’t include a front-facing camera which does put a dent in its credibility. A front-facing camera with FaceTime has been rumored to be coming to the iPod touch for months and MacRumors has received images from an iPhone parts supplier of the iPod touch’s front LCD and bezel which does have a hole for a front-facing camera.

Coming hot on the heels of all these iPod touch rumors is word that Apple has added email-based FaceTime support in iOS 4.1 beta 3, which was seeded to developers earlier this week. MacRumors’ Eric Slivka reports that iOS 4’s Contacts application gives users the option to make FaceTime calls using either a phone number or an email address. There is no word on how FaceTime calls would be made using email addresses however this would presumably allow iOS devices without a cellular connection to perform FaceTime calls.

There’s a whole slew of Apple-related rumors flying around right now. And these rumors will only heat up as we move closer to September, when Apple will announce new iPods (as they have for the past several years). I’m excited about the announcements, I have a feeling that expanding FaceTime to the iPod touch will add a tremendous amount of momentum behind it — I wouldn’t be surprised if FaceTime becomes the de facto standard for video calling by this time next year.

The End of the ‘Get a Mac’ Ad Campaign ➝

MacRumors reports that Apple may be putting an end to the “Get a Mac” campaign.

Eric Slivka:

It now appears that Apple has finally pulled the “Get a Mac” campaign from its site, redirecting the page to an expanded “Why You’ll Love a Mac” page highlighting five key marketing points for Macs in comparison to PCs: Better Hardware, Better Software, Better OS, Better Support, and It’s Compatible.

Apple’s extensive gallery of “Get a Mac” ads has also been removed from the site, with the URL similarly redirecting to the “Why You’ll Love a Mac” page.

This also likely signals the end of the “Get a Mac” TV ads as well. These ads are funny and enjoyable to watch, but are an easy target for criticism of the Mac platform. I just hope that the “Get a Mac” ads are replaced with iPhone or iPad-style ads that show what Macs can actually do.

Apple to Release ‘Concierge’ iPhone App ➝

MacRumors’ Eric Slivka:

MacRumors has heard from several sources that Apple is preparing to launch a “Concierge” iPhone application targeted at customers of its retail stores. The application will reportedly provide many of the same functions available through the company’s retail store online reservations system, allowing customers to schedule Genius Bar and One to One appointments from their mobile devices.

A fantastic idea for an application, I just wonder how Apple will deal with the inevitable increase in missed appointments. I can imagine someone scheduling an appointment, fixing the problem themselves, and then neglecting to cancel the appointment.