Report Claims iPhone 6 Will Feature Curved Display, All-Aluminum Rear Shell

Apple’s next-generation iPhone may feature rounded edges and a curved glass display, according to a new report from Mac Otakara [Google Translate].

squair_curvaceous_bumper
The Squair Curvaceous Bumper
Citing “reliable sources”, the publication notes that the iPhone 6′s cover glass will sit flush with the device’s rounded corners, departing from the straight edges seen on the iPhone 4 and iPhone 5s. The report likens the device’s profile to the Squair Curvaceous Bumper, a Japan-made aluminum bumper for the iPhone that features a rounded housing.

The report also claims that Apple will do away with the rear glass antenna breaks found on the iPhone 5s and iPhone 5s in favor of an all-aluminum design. Such a move would likely mean that Apple is incorporating significant changes to its overall antenna layout, perhaps positioning current radios in different locations.

Throughout the past few months, various reports have indicated that the iPhone 6 may feature slightly rounded edges. However, only a few reports have claimed that the device will feature a curved glass display, with Bloomberg noting last December that the company was working on two iPhones with large curved screens for this year. That account however was contrasted by The Wall Street Journal this past January, which said that Apple would not be using a curved display in its devices.

iphone6
Renderings of the iPhone 6 (4.7”) and iPhone 6 (5.7”) based on leaked schematics
Apple will likely unveil the iPhone 6 later this year in two different sizes of 4.7 inches and 5.5 inches. It is also likely that the smaller 4.7-inch version of the phone will ship first in the third quarter of this year, while the larger version is estimated to ship later due to challenges with the device’s display technology and battery life.

In addition to a larger display, both versions of the iPhone 6 are expected to include a thinner, bezel-free design, faster A8 processor, Touch ID fingerprint sensor and an upgraded camera with optical image stabilization. The device is also expected to debut with Apple’s latest iOS 8 mobile operating system, which will likely feature enhancements to Maps, Siri, and iCloud in addition to a new “Healthbook” app. Apple is also said to be negotiating with carriers to increase the price of the iPhone 6 by $100.

Recent Mac and iOS Blog Stories
Apple: iPad Sales at High End of ‘Internal Expectations’, 2/3 of Users New to Device
iTunes by the Numbers: 800M Accounts, $5.2B in Billings, 70B App Downloads
Tim Cook: Apple’s Shares ‘Undervalued’, Expansion of Share Buyback Program ‘Shows Confidence’
Catcher to Supply Apple With iPhone 6 Casings as Sales Estimates Climb to 70 Million
Viber Updates iOS App with Redesigned User Interface, Multiple Media Sharing
New Renders Show Off ‘iPhone 6s’ and ‘iPhone 6c’ Concepts
Steve Jobs’ Infamous Temper Lives on at Apple in Bug-Wrangler Kim Vorrath
Apple Releases AirPort Extreme and Time Capsule Firmware Update 7.7.3 With Heartbleed Fix



iPhone 6 Size Compared to Galaxy S5 and Other Android Phones

With a large bulk of the rumors for the iPhone 6 revolving around its purported increased screen size, there have been a healthy amount of iPhone 6 renderings exploring what the phone could look like and how big it would be compared to the current iPhone 5s.

MacRumors forum member deuxani decided to take it a step further and compared the 4.7″ iPhone 6 to its Android-based competition.

If the rumors are true, at least one model of the iPhone 6 will contain a 16:9 4.7” screen. When you think about it realistically the iPhone 6 will have a home button with a finger print scanner the same size as the iPhone 5S. Also will the top and bottom bezels have the same height for symmetry. The side bezels will be smaller than the iPhone 5S, but they will not be non-existing.

c4zTD3m
First, deuxani compared the rumored iPhone 6 to the Motorola Moto X and LG G2 Mini, two 4.7-inch Android phones, that were actually smaller despite having the same screen size. This is largely because of of the rounded Touch ID sensor on the bottom and the need for the top and bottom bezels to be symmetrical due to Apple’s design philosophy.
KV9AayF
Compared to the 5″ Nexus 5 and the 5.2″ LG G2, deuxani found the iPhone 6 could be as tall as either phone with less screen real estate.

And finally, when compared to this year’s flagship 5″ HTC One (m8) and Samsung Galaxy S5, deuxani found that the Android devices were larger in every way.
SYGjdwt
In conclusion, deuxani found that the iPhone 6 could find it difficult to impress in screen size alone when compared to its Android competition. However, the iPhone 6 may stand out in thinness, which was highlighted in a video earlier today comparing an leaked iPhone 6 case to other devices.

Apple has been rumored to release two larger sized iPhones this fall. The rumored sizes are 4.7″ and 5.5″, though the 4.7″ version is thought to arrive first as Apple is allegedly having a difficult time finding a thin enough battery to place in the 5.5″ model. A recently released Apple slide revealed that the company acknowledged that consumers wanted larger screened phones, which Apple couldn’t provide them at the time.

Recent Mac and iOS Blog Stories
Apple: iPad Sales at High End of ‘Internal Expectations’, 2/3 of Users New to Device
iTunes by the Numbers: 800M Accounts, $5.2B in Billings, 70B App Downloads
Tim Cook: Apple’s Shares ‘Undervalued’, Expansion of Share Buyback Program ‘Shows Confidence’
Catcher to Supply Apple With iPhone 6 Casings as Sales Estimates Climb to 70 Million
Viber Updates iOS App with Redesigned User Interface, Multiple Media Sharing
New Renders Show Off ‘iPhone 6s’ and ‘iPhone 6c’ Concepts
Steve Jobs’ Infamous Temper Lives on at Apple in Bug-Wrangler Kim Vorrath
Apple Releases AirPort Extreme and Time Capsule Firmware Update 7.7.3 With Heartbleed Fix



iPhone 6 Case Compared to iPhone 5s, Nexus 5 and Galaxy Note 3 in New Video

We’ve seen several examples of cases designed for the rumored 4.7-inch version of the upcoming iPhone 6, and in a new video, Unbox Therapy compares a 4.7-inch iPhone 6 case to the iPhone 5s, the Nexus 5 and the Galaxy Note 3, giving us an idea of how the iPhone 6 might look next to other large-screened devices.

The 4.7-inch case is depicted next to the 4-inch iPhone 5s, the 4.95-inch Nexus 5, and the 5.7-inch Galaxy Note 3. The case is closest in size to the Nexus 5, which gives the best representation of how a 4.7-inch iPhone may feel in the hand. The iPhone 5s looks quite a bit smaller than the case, while the Galaxy Note 3 looks significantly larger.

Along with a size comparison, the video points out some of the design features on the case, which may translate to design changes on the iPhone 6. As has been pointed out in other case and part leaks, the sleep/wake button has been moved from the top right of the device to the right side.

Rumors have suggested the sleep/wake button might be relocated in order to improve one-handed use on a larger device, and the volume buttons might be altered as well, gaining a rectangular iPad-mini-style shape rather than the existing circular buttons on the iPhone 5s.

The iPhone 6 case is also noted to be quite thin, which is in line with previous rumors about the device. According to KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, the iPhone 6 could be significantly thinner than the existing 7.6mm iPhone 5s at 6.5–7.0mm and it may also have a narrower bezel.

iphone-6-sideRendering of the iPhone 6 in both 4.7 and 5.7-inch sizes
Apple is expected to ship the iPhone 6 in two different sizes, the 4.7-inch version described in the video and also a 5.5-inch version that has reportedly seen some production delays. While the 4.7-inch version of the iPhone 6 may make its debut as soon as September, the 5.5-inch version may not ship until 2015.

Along with a thinner profile, multiple sizes, and a narrower bezel, the iPhone 6 might include a sapphire crystal screen, an A8 processor, and camera improvements in the form of optical image stabilization.

Recent Mac and iOS Blog Stories
Apple: iPad Sales at High End of ‘Internal Expectations’, 2/3 of Users New to Device
iTunes by the Numbers: 800M Accounts, $5.2B in Billings, 70B App Downloads
Tim Cook: Apple’s Shares ‘Undervalued’, Expansion of Share Buyback Program ‘Shows Confidence’
Catcher to Supply Apple With iPhone 6 Casings as Sales Estimates Climb to 70 Million
Viber Updates iOS App with Redesigned User Interface, Multiple Media Sharing
New Renders Show Off ‘iPhone 6s’ and ‘iPhone 6c’ Concepts
Steve Jobs’ Infamous Temper Lives on at Apple in Bug-Wrangler Kim Vorrath
Apple Releases AirPort Extreme and Time Capsule Firmware Update 7.7.3 With Heartbleed Fix



Apple CEO Tim Cook: It ‘Means More to Us to Get it Right’ Than to Be First

During the question and answer portion of today’s financial earnings call, Apple CEO Tim Cook explained why the company has been slow to put products out in 2014, pointing towards the company’s attention to detail and its desire to “perform at a really high level of quality” that Apple’s customers expect.

Cook noted that Apple did not ship the first MP3 player, smartphone, or tablet, but he said that the company did release the first “acceptable” and “modern” smartphone, tablet, and MP3 player when it launched the iPhone, iPad, and iPod.

iphone5s5c
“We care about every detail and it takes us a bit longer to do that. That’s always been the case,” he said. “It means more to us to get it right than to be first.”

Cook pointed towards examples in the marketplace where the clear objective was to be first, possibly referring to Samsung and its poorly received Galaxy Gear smart watch. Apple customers “want great, insanely great,” said Cook, and “that’s what we want to deliver.”

According to Cook, Apple has many products in the pipeline that the company is excited about, but it is not yet ready to “pull the string on the curtain.” He did say, however, that Apple has expanded the number of things the company is working on behind the scenes.

Recent Mac and iOS Blog Stories
iTunes by the Numbers: 800M Accounts, $5.2B in Billings, 70B App Downloads
Tim Cook: Apple’s Shares ‘Undervalued’, Expansion of Share Buyback Program ‘Shows Confidence’
Catcher to Supply Apple With iPhone 6 Casings as Sales Estimates Climb to 70 Million
Viber Updates iOS App with Redesigned User Interface, Multiple Media Sharing
New Renders Show Off ‘iPhone 6s’ and ‘iPhone 6c’ Concepts
Steve Jobs’ Infamous Temper Lives on at Apple in Bug-Wrangler Kim Vorrath
Apple Releases AirPort Extreme and Time Capsule Firmware Update 7.7.3 With Heartbleed Fix
ElevationLab Debuts Aluminum Elevation Stand for iMac and Apple Displays



Apple Acquired 24 Companies Over Last 18 Months, ‘We’re On The Prowl’ for More

Applelogo.pngDuring today’s second quarter earnings call, Apple CEO Tim Cook revealed that Apple has purchased a total of 24 companies over the last 18 months, some that are known and some that remain unknown.

Just over half of Apple’s acquisitions have come to light, which means the company has purchased a number of additional companies that have not been disclosed. So far in 2014, Apple acquired SnappyLabs, a company that produced a burst-mode photo app, and Burstly, the company behind the Testflight iOS beta testing platform.

2013 saw Apple acquire several different mapping apps, including BroadMap, Embark, HopStop, Locationary, and WiFiSlam, along with other notable additions like 3D company PrimeSense and Novauris, a speech recognition company. Back in October, Tim Cook noted Apple had completed 15 strategic acquisitions in 2013, pointing towards a number of new acquisitions already in 2014.

The technology from Apple’s acquisitions will likely make its way into future products and updates. For example, all of the mapping acquisitions are expected to be put to use in iOS 8, which will see the addition of transit directions and possibly improved indoor mapping techniques.

During the call, Apple CEO Tim Cook noted that investing in research and development along with hardware, software, and services were top priorities, and that the company was “on the prowl” for new companies to acquire.

Recent Mac and iOS Blog Stories
iTunes by the Numbers: 800M Accounts, $5.2B in Billings, 70B App Downloads
Tim Cook: Apple’s Shares ‘Undervalued’, Expansion of Share Buyback Program ‘Shows Confidence’
Catcher to Supply Apple With iPhone 6 Casings as Sales Estimates Climb to 70 Million
Viber Updates iOS App with Redesigned User Interface, Multiple Media Sharing
New Renders Show Off ‘iPhone 6s’ and ‘iPhone 6c’ Concepts
Steve Jobs’ Infamous Temper Lives on at Apple in Bug-Wrangler Kim Vorrath
Apple Releases AirPort Extreme and Time Capsule Firmware Update 7.7.3 With Heartbleed Fix
ElevationLab Debuts Aluminum Elevation Stand for iMac and Apple Displays



Former Burberry CEO Angela Ahrendts to Join Apple Next Week

During today’s second quarter earnings call, Apple CEO Tim Cook announced that the company’s new retail and online leader, Angela Ahrendts, will be joining Apple next week.

Ahrendts first resigned from British luxury fashion house Burberry in October of 2013, but was contractually obligated to stay on with the company for another six months as it transitioned to new CEO Christopher Bailey. As of April, Ahrendts fulfilled her obligations and became free to leave Burberry to join Apple.

angelaahrendts.jpg
Earlier this month, rumors suggested Ahrendts might stay on with Burberry until June in order to pick up a two million pound performance bonus, but it appears that she will not be staying with the company in order to collect the payment.

Ahrendts will join Apple as the Senior Vice President of Retail and Online Stores, a position that has seen significant turnover over the past several years. In 2011, Ron Johnson left Apple for J.C. Penney, after building up Apple’s retail presence during his 11-year tenure. Johnson was then replaced by Dixons CEO John Browett, who served less than a year at Apple. Since Browett’s departure, the position has been empty.

Recent Mac and iOS Blog Stories
Catcher to Supply Apple With iPhone 6 Casings as Sales Estimates Climb to 70 Million
Viber Updates iOS App with Redesigned User Interface, Multiple Media Sharing
New Renders Show Off ‘iPhone 6s’ and ‘iPhone 6c’ Concepts
Steve Jobs’ Infamous Temper Lives on at Apple in Bug-Wrangler Kim Vorrath
Apple Releases AirPort Extreme and Time Capsule Firmware Update 7.7.3 With Heartbleed Fix
ElevationLab Debuts Aluminum Elevation Stand for iMac and Apple Displays
Logitech Adds Multi-Angle Viewing to Ultrathin Keyboard, Launches New iPad Cases
First Generation Apple TVs Once Again Able to Connect to iTunes



Apple Reports Record March Quarter Results, Splits Stock 7-for-1, and Boosts Share Buyback

Apple LogoApple today announced financial results for the first calendar quarter and second fiscal quarter of 2014. For the quarter, Apple posted revenue of $45.6 billion and net quarterly profit of $10.2 billion, or $11.62 per diluted share, compared to revenue of $43.6 billion and net quarterly profit of $9.5 billion, or $10.09 per diluted share in the year-ago quarter.

Gross margin for the quarter was 39.3 percent compared to 37.5 percent in the year-ago quarter, with international sales accounting for 66 percent of revenue. Apple also declared an increased dividend payment of $3.29 per share, payable on May 15 to shareholders as of the close of trading on May 12. The company currently holds $150.6 billion in cash and marketable securities.

In addition to the increase in the dividend payment, Apple said it will dramatically increase its share repurchase authorization to $90 billion from $60 billion and will execute a 7-for-1 stock split as of June 9. The company says it expects to spend over $130 billion in cash under its capital return program by the end of 2015. Apple is now paying $11 billion per year in dividends to shareholders.

Apple previously had a 2-for-1 stock split back in 2005.
q22014linechart
Quarterly iPhone unit sales reached 43.7 million, compared to 37.4 million in the year-ago quarter, and the company sold 16.35 million iPads, down from 19.5 million in the year-ago quarter. Apple sold 4.1 million Macs compared to just under 4 million in the year-ago period.

“We’re very proud of our quarterly results, especially our strong iPhone sales and record revenue from services,” said Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO. “We’re eagerly looking forward to introducing more new products and services that only Apple could bring to market.”

Apple’s guidance for the third quarter of fiscal 2014 includes expected revenue of $36-38 billion and gross margin between 37 and 38 percent.

q22014piechart
Apple will provide live streaming of its fiscal Q2 2014 financial results conference call at 2:00 PM Pacific, and MacRumors will update this story with coverage of the conference call highlights.

Conference Call and Q&A Highlights are available in reverse chronological order after the jump.

2:58 pm: The call is complete.



2:58 pm: A: Reason that I stripped off hobby label, when you look at sales of the Apple TV box itself, and the content that was bought directly off Apple TV, for 2013, that number was over $1 billion. It didn’t feel right to me to refer to something that’s over $1 billion as a hobby. From an investment point of view, we continue to make the product better and better so it doesn’t feel right from that POV either. We have HBO Go already on Apple TV and you have to authenticate in order to use it, but you have to do that with Amazon’s service as well from my brief read of their announcement. From that, they got some older content from HBO to put on there and I haven’t had a chance to evaluate exactly what it is and don’t have a personal POV of that. Look broadly, compares extremely favorable to the content that is on the Amazon box. Sold about 20 million Apple TVs and we have a pretty large installed base there. I’m feeling quite good about that business and where it can go.



2:56 pm: Q: Apple TV is no longer a hobby, why did you make that distinction. Interesting to hear your feedback on HBO/Amazon announcement today and what you think that means in terms of content partners being able to work with players like yourself.



2:56 pm: Looking at this data and deciding to continue investing in a big way. Plan to triple number of Apple Retail Stores in China over next two years, continuing to build out channel, expand online. 40,000 points of sale on iPhone. even 40k is low number considering broad land mass and number of folks in China. I feel like there’s still loads of opportunity there and feel really good about how we’re doing.



2:55 pm: A: All-time revenue record in Greater China, $9.8 billion. iPhone up 28% versus IDC market forecast of 20% growth. Gained share. Mac units were up double digit, up 13%, far outpacing IDC PC market forecast of negative 8%. Gained share there as well. iTunes software and services, more than doubled it year over year in triple digits, look at iPad, take out channel inventory ins and outs, look at demand instead of sell-in, grew by 6%. IDC expected flat tablet market in China. Literally did well in every single area in China. Wasn’t just because we were able to come to an agreement with the world’s largest carrier, that was key but as you can tell there are other things going on. Also, I had mentioned this briefly, if you look at some of the numbers we’re seeing on first time iPhone buyers, people that bought the ipHone 4s, 85% were first time iPhone buyers. The 5c, 69% were first time iPhone buyers. These are extraordinary. As you expect, these are heavily android switchers. 62% of people who bought 4s switched, 60% who bought 5c switched from Android.



2:52 pm: Q: China Mobile is a driver in China, but can you talk about other carriers or products in China?



2:52 pm: A: Lot of moving parts, lot of acquisitions, lot of people giving up to a degree. At the end of the day, we see it as, the part of the market that we’re interested in, the market of people who really want the best smartphones. They’re not all at the high end of the price band. We have smartphones that go down to an affordable price with the 4s, we’re proud to ship that product. I think that this quarter, if you were unsure, hopefully this quarter demonstrates to you that we can do well in a number of geographies, from emerging to developed markets. Some of the numbers we’ve experienced, through the first half of 2014, Brazil up 61%, Russia up 97%, Turkey up 56%, India up 55%, Vietnam up 262%. I could go on. The point is, there are an umber of markets out there where we’re beginning to really catch on to a number of customers. I am particularly proud of the results in these markets because these have not been historic strong pints for Apple. We’ve been working at China for a while and we’ve learned a lot. I’m proud of what we’ve done there. Some of these other numbers that I’ve read show we’ve had success outside of there as well.



2:50 pm: Q: Some competitors are cutting prices quickly on smartphones, there’s a lot going on with competitors. How are you seeing the market?



2:49 pm: So many examples out in the marketplace where it’s clear the objective was to be first. Apple customers want great, insanely great, and that’s what we want to deliver. That’s the way we look at it. From an acquisitions point of view, we have done 24 in 18 months. We’re on the prowl. We look for companies that have great people and great technology and that fit culturally. We don’t have a rule that says we can’t spend a lot. It’s important to us that strategically it makes sense and that it adds values to our shareholders. Not in a race to spend the most or acquire the most. Want to improve products. To the extent that they do that, we will continue to acquire. We will seem to keep some quiet and some of them are impossible to keep quiet.



2:48 pm: A: Stay focused on things we do best and focus on high level of quality that our customers expect. Feel comfortable in expanding things we’re working on, doing that in the background but we’re not ready to pull the string on the curtain. Have great things we’re working on that I’m proud of and excited about. For us, we care about every detail. When you care about every detail and about getting everything right, it takes a long time to do that. That’s not new. We didn’t ship the first MP3 player, nor the first smartphone, nor the first tablet. In fact, there were tablets being shipped a decade or so before then. We shipped first successful modern tablet, smartphone and MP3 player. It means much more to us to get it right than to be first.



2:46 pm: Q: Is there something about Apple’s product set that keeps Apple focused on hardware rather than making TV shows or whatever that the company might have the money to do?



2:46 pm: In the Enterprise, we’re seeing virtually all — 98% of the Fortune 500 using iPad — latest data says 91% of activations of tablets on Enterprise were iPads. Astonishing number and many of those enterprises are writing apps that are key proprietary apps for running that business. This is great for that company because they’re more productive. Once again, just like in education, what we have to do in Enterprise is focus on penetration. needs to be deeper and broader but int terms of having people write apps we’re doing a good job. If you look at US as a proxy in retail, NPD, we had 46% share. Embedded in that 46%, there’s a lot of things in there that I wouldn’t put in the same category as iPad that are weighing the share down. Not a market we would play in in a type of product you would never see an Apple brand on. Feel like we’re doing well there. Office, I believe, does help. Very unclear to say how much. If it would have been done earlier, it would have been even better for Microsoft frankly. Lots of alternatives out there from productivity point of view. Some of which we brought to market, some brought by other developers. Is a key franchise in Enterprise, having it on iPad is good and I wholeheartedly welcome Microsoft the App Store to sell Office. Customers responding well. Customer sat is 98% on iPad. Nothing in the world with 98% customer sat. 2/3 planning to buy a tablet planning to buy an iPad. Usage numbers are off the charts, far and exceeding Android. 4x exceeding web traffic of Android combined. When I back up from all of these, I feel great. Every 90 days it won’t be a number that everybody is thrilled with, but over the arc of time, iPad looks very very good. iPad has a great future. The thing that drives us is the “next” iPads, the things that are in the pipeline. The things we can do to make the iPad even better. No shortage of work going in on that, nor any shortage of ideas. I can’t help but be extremely excited about where we are and I think we did a reasonable job of explaining what the disconnect between what we expected (we hit it, the high end of our expectation) and the street’s view of it. I believe the vast majority is just channel inventory. We should have been even clearer on last quarter, but I am very bullish on iPad.



2:41 pm: A: When I back up from iPad, here’s what I see. It’s absolutely the fastest growing product in Apple’s history. Its the only product that we’ve ever made that was instantly a hit in three of our key markets, consumer to business including enterprise, and education. If you look at it, 4 years after launching the first iPad, sold 210 million. More than we or I think anyone thought was possible. Interesting to note that that’s twice as many iPhones as we’d sold in a comparable period of time. 7x as many iPods as we’d sold in that period of time. Important to put into perspective. Have come a long way very quickly. Looking at by market, by education market, we have 95% share. Focus in education is on penetration. Getting more schools to buy. My belief is that the match has been lit and its very clear yo the educators that have studied this, student achievement is higher with iPad in the classroom than without it.



2:39 pm: Q: I understand the iPad is not as weak as it appears on a sell through basis but relatively flat year over year. Can that accelerate with Office on the iPad?



2:39 pm: Most important thing that we do is to make great products that really get our users excited to want the next one. That will always be the case. You can bet that’s where the vast majority of our attention is there. In terms of BOM pressure of any new product, you’ve seen in the past that it exists. We also have a way of working down the cost curve. That was key in achieving the 39.3% gross margin for this past quarter. As I said before, we price things at a level that is fair for the value that we’re providing. We’re certainly not stuck on certain price points, we price at value that are fair for the value that we’re delivering.



2:38 pm: A: On iPhone 4 question, we sold a very, very low, single digit percentage of those. Had extremely minimal impact on results on the quarter. In terms of general upgrade or installed base, some of the programs that the carriers are running, may serve to increase the upgrade cycle. Some areas where customers can pay a bit more in the beginning and have the ability to essentially upgrade each year. Some that work that way, some that work the way that more of the way that you’re leaning. How these balance are very difficult currently to conclude. Regardless of how those balance, what I see as the bigger opportunity for Apple, the smartphone market is only a billion or so units. Will eventually take over the entire mobile phone market. We’ve seen our ability to attract new users to iPhone to be very significant in the emerging markets. We were seeing new to iPhone numbers on the iPhone 4s sales in the 80%’s in certain large geo’s. This gives us great comfort that we can continue to grow and we may not be able to attract some of those buyers to our top phone because of price point, but if we can get them in on the entry iPhone, it gives them a great product and a great value and gets them into the ecosystem. As you know, our ability to keep customers is very good and our ability to show other products that Apple produces to a family that’s buying Apple products is also very good. At the macro level, I see the opportunity of the market and getting more people into the Apple ecosystem much larger than any of the noise around the different carrier plans. Some of which, I think, help, and some of which work the opposite way. Unclear to me how those net. Also important to know that the bulk of the things that you’re seeing in the US are not occurring in many other geo’s in terms of upgrade policies and so forth. Each country has its own cadence associated with this. The US is in the 30% of our business, not 100% so it’s important to weigh it with the proper perspective.



2:34 pm: Q: If you could talk about how you think about replacement cycles generally for the iPhone, over the longer term. US carriers have started introducing plans that may ultimately encourage people to keep their phone longer than two years because their total price paid is less. One could argue and I’d like your opinion about that pushing out replacement cycles. The imperative for Apple to continue to introduce great products to encourage people to upgrade with great frequency, introducing great products puts pressure on BOM and pricing. In order to make a great phone, it costs more to do so, managing that margin pressure?



2:32 pm: A: When you look at $41 in decline, about half of that was driven because we have continued to do very well in emerging markets with the 4s. I’ve mentioned that there are a lot of markets where we have grown very strongly. Half of that decline came from stronger sales of the 4s. Other half was as we move away from the quarter when we launch the product, we have lower capacity mix.



2:32 pm: Q: On iPhone ASPs this quarter, they were down $40. Largest sequential decline that we’ve seen in history. Can you help us understand what drove that? Mix? Good growth in each of three models. were you seeing strong growth in 4s? How significant, if any, was selling older generation iPhone 4?



2:30 pm: A: We saw some pressure in the quarter because of stricter enforcement of upgrade policies, primarily in the US. If you really look at iPhone, the strength was very broad based. As I had mentioned, we gained share in a whole host of markets. From developing like US/UK/France/Germany, to more emerging like China/Vietnam, and had the largest total sales of iPhone in BRIC countries than we’ve ever seen.



2:30 pm: Q: Looking at iPhone upside for March quarter, China was a key driver. Within the US, did you see as much pressure in US carrier upgrade policies that you saw in holiday quarter? Is this headwind behind us now?



2:29 pm: A: March quarter was very good, three reasons: better volume, better costs, favorable mix in both products and services. Q3, as you’ve seen from our revenue guidance, we are expecting some loss of leverage from sequential decline in revenue. Expecting less favorable mix. This is something typical that happens to us as we move farther away from the quarter when we launch a new product. To offset, it’s a partial offset, we will have some cost improvements.



2:28 pm: Q: Can you walk through key drivers of June quarter margin upsides?



2:28 pm: A: We believe things should be priced at a fair price for what they deliver. We make decisions when we’re closer to market.



2:28 pm: Q: Question around iPhone ASP. Looking at trend, iPhone 5s demand has surprised the upside this cycle. Does that give you confidence that Apple could charge more for highly innovative products in the future or does the strategy remain to keep innovation at the same price as current products?



2:27 pm: A: In that category, there are several things not just App Store revenues. If you look at App Store only, it would look a little different. In terms of your question, I do believe that we can monetize more than we are from a services POV in existing areas and in new areas. I’m encouraged when we look at the App Store, the strength was broad-based. Growth was in the triple digits in China.



2:26 pm: Q: 800 million accounts is big jump, yet iTunes software and services growth decelerated. What’s your view on better monetizing installed base in the future?



2:25 pm: We wish him all the best in his approaching retirement at the end of September. Would also like to recognize him, that he has never missed guidance in his 10 years as CFO which must be an all-time record for CFO’s.



2:25 pm: Tim: Peter Oppenheimer transitioning from CFO role in June. Peter has been Apple CFO for 10 years. Apple is 20x the size it was when Peter became CFO. “Expertise, leadership and incredibly hard work have been instrumental to Apple’s success.”



2:24 pm: Taking 7:1 stock split to make Apple more accessible to more investors.



2:23 pm: Expect revenue between $36-38 billion, compared to $35.3 billion YoY. Gross margin between 37 and 38%



2:22 pm: To repatriate foreign cash under current US tax law, would incur significant tax consequences. Don’t believe this would be in best interest of tax holders. Encourage streamlining of tax code. To execute capital return program, intend to access debt markets again.



2:21 pm: Domestic cash down to $11 billion this year. Will hold sufficient domestic cash to ensure liquidity.



2:21 pm: Apple one of the largest dividend payers in the world, paying $11 billion per year.



2:20 pm: Have delivered on intention to return capital to shareholders at fast pace. Spend $66 billion of total $100 billion program announced last year.



2:19 pm: By end of March 2014, spent $46 billion in $60 billion share repurchase authorization.



2:17 pm: Among people planning to purchase a tablet within 90 days, 2/3 plan to buy an iPad.



2:16 pm: iPad generated 4x mobile web traffic than all Android tablets combined.



2:15 pm: Strong performance from MacBook Pro and MacBook Air



2:14 pm: Cumulative app downloads top 70 billion.



2:14 pm: iTunes Stores generated $5.2 billion in billings, up 24% year over year.



2:13 pm: Luca Maestri is taking over the role of current CFO Peter Oppenheimer on the call. He will be promoted to CFO later this year when Oppenheimer retires.



2:12 pm: iPhone increase of 6.3 million iPhones from last year, 17% growth. China Mobile drew strong growth.



2:10 pm: Dividend is important, increasing for second time in two years. Planning for annual dividend increases going forward.



2:10 pm: Think deliberately about how much, and in which way to return cash to shareholders. Vast majority of capital return to share repurchase because believe current stock price is below value.



2:10 pm: Able to return significant capital to shareholders. Began 2 years ago, more than doubled program last year. Increasing size once again adding $30 billion. $130 billion in total return. Size and pace is unprecedented, and expect to complete by December 2015.



2:09 pm: We appreciate all input from shareholders. Will continue to seek input going forward, and will update conclusions around this time each year. Continually evaluate return of capital in light of most current information. Enables us to be thoughtful about size, mix, pace of program.



2:08 pm: Acquired 24 companies in past 18 months. Must maintain financial flexibility.



2:08 pm: Update to capital return program. Guiding principles for capital allocation, and conclusion on changes making for this year: Apple created tremendous value for shareholders by creating great products that enrich people’s lives. That will always be our top priority and driving force. Invest in R&D, investing in hardware, software and services, supply chain, global presence with retail stores, marketing and distribution, expanding products and services into new categories and “we are not going to underinvest in this business”.



2:07 pm: Strong halo effect we’ve seen over and over again in our history. Customers that have a great experience with their first Apple product become strong and loyal owners.



2:06 pm: Two-thirds of people registering an iPad in the last six months were new to iPad. Half of people registering iPhones were new to iPhone.



2:06 pm: Total revenue of over $103 billion in first 6 months, earnings per share growth close to double digits.



2:06 pm: Investing in retail stores, opened first stores in Brazil and Turkey, stores in 15 countries. New retail and online leader Angela Ahrendts will be joining Apple next week.



2:05 pm: Strong results in Greater China, all-time quarterly revenue record, approaching $10 billion. Japan, revenue up 26% in spite of foreign exchange headwinds and where smartphone market share reached 55%.



2:05 pm: Continue to believe tablet market will surpass PC market and that Apple will be beneficiary of this trend.



2:05 pm: iPad sales came in at high end of Apple’s internal expectations. Realize they were lower than analyst expectations. Almost all of the difference can be explained by two factors: in March 2013 quarter, significantly increased iPad channel inventory. This year, significantly reduced it. Second, ended December quarter 2012 with substantial backlog of iPad mini that was shipped in the March quarter. Ended December this year in supply/demand balance.



2:04 pm: Gained share in computer market, defied industry trends by growing while industry contracted.



2:03 pm: Have 800 million iTunes accounts, most with credit cards attached.



2:03 pm: New all-time record for sales in BRIC countries. (Brazil, Russia, India, China)



2:03 pm: Gained share in US, UK, Canada, Germany, France, Vietnam and Greater China.



2:03 pm: Demand for each iPhone model stronger than its predecessor.



2:03 pm: Best gross margin percentage since September 2012. iPhone was key in driving stronger than expected results, 44 million iPhones, a March quarter record.



2:02 pm: Tim Cook: “Very strong results we’re reporting for the March quarter.” Is a new March quarter record and strongest non-holiday quarter ever.



2:01 pm: Apple CEO Tim Cook on the call with CFO Peter Oppenheimer and Corporate Controller (and future CFO) Luca Maestri.



2:00 pm: Apple’s earnings call will begin momentarily.



1:56 pm: Apple’s stock price is up significantly after hours, up nearly 7.5% to $563 from $525.



1:47 pm: The second quarter earnings call will begin in approximately 10 minutes.



Recent Mac and iOS Blog Stories
Catcher to Supply Apple With iPhone 6 Casings as Sales Estimates Climb to 70 Million
Viber Updates iOS App with Redesigned User Interface, Multiple Media Sharing
New Renders Show Off ‘iPhone 6s’ and ‘iPhone 6c’ Concepts
Steve Jobs’ Infamous Temper Lives on at Apple in Bug-Wrangler Kim Vorrath
Apple Releases AirPort Extreme and Time Capsule Firmware Update 7.7.3 With Heartbleed Fix
ElevationLab Debuts Aluminum Elevation Stand for iMac and Apple Displays
Logitech Adds Multi-Angle Viewing to Ultrathin Keyboard, Launches New iPad Cases
First Generation Apple TVs Once Again Able to Connect to iTunes



Apple Leaves Users Vulnerable By Not Fixing iOS and OS X Security Issues Simultaneously

Notable computer security researcher Kristin Paget, who worked on Apple’s security team before leaving for Tesla in early 2014, has taken to her blog (via Ars Technica) to criticize Apple for fixing more than a dozen security flaws in iOS weeks after patching them in OS X.

mavericksios7
iOS 7.1.1, released yesterday, patched multiple WebKit vulnerabilities that were initially fixed in OS X with the release of Safari 7.0.3 on April 1. The delay between fixes, says Paget, alerted hackers to serious flaws potentially exploitable on Apple’s mobile operating system and then gave hackers ample time to exploit the vulnerabilities.

Is this how you do business? Drop a patch for one product that quite literally lists out, in order, the security vulnerabilities in your platform, and then fail to patch those weaknesses on your other range of products for weeks afterwards? You really don’t see anything wrong with this?

Someone tell me I’m not crazy here. Apple preaches the virtues of having the same kernel (and a bunch of other operating system goop) shared between two platforms – but then only patches those platforms one at a time, leaving the entire userbase of the other platform exposed to known security vulnerabilities for weeks at a time?

Addressing Apple, Paget goes on to write that Apple needs to sit in front of a chalkboard and write out “I will not use iOS to drop 0day on OSX, nor use OSX to drop 0day on iOS.”

In addition to the WebKit vulnerabilities that were patched out of sync, Apple also recently exposed a major OS X flaw when patching the same flaw in iOS. Back in February, with the release of iOS 7.0.6, a major SSL connection verification vulnerability came to light. Known as the “goto fail” bug, it left iOS and OS X users vulnerable to man-in-the-middle attacks where hackers could pose as a trusted website to intercept communications or acquire sensitive information.

Apple launched iOS 7.0.6 on a Friday, fixing the vulnerability on iOS but leaving OS X users vulnerable to attack until the following Tuesday, when it released OS X 10.9.2 to patch the security flaw.

Recent Mac and iOS Blog Stories
Catcher to Supply Apple With iPhone 6 Casings as Sales Estimates Climb to 70 Million
Viber Updates iOS App with Redesigned User Interface, Multiple Media Sharing
New Renders Show Off ‘iPhone 6s’ and ‘iPhone 6c’ Concepts
Steve Jobs’ Infamous Temper Lives on at Apple in Bug-Wrangler Kim Vorrath
Apple Releases AirPort Extreme and Time Capsule Firmware Update 7.7.3 With Heartbleed Fix
ElevationLab Debuts Aluminum Elevation Stand for iMac and Apple Displays
Logitech Adds Multi-Angle Viewing to Ultrathin Keyboard, Launches New iPad Cases
First Generation Apple TVs Once Again Able to Connect to iTunes



GameStop Expanding Beyond Video Games with Aggressive Growth Plans for ‘Simply Mac’ Stores

Major video game retailer GameStop is making a significant push to broaden its business, expanding its retail operations with new brands and stores that will focus on Apple gear and AT&T Mobility products, reports The Star-Telegram.

simply_mac_store
While the diversification will include a move into AT&T mobile services through GameStop’s acquisition of Spring Mobile, of more interest for Apple users is GameStop’s plans for Simply Mac, a chain of authorized Apple resale and repair shops that focuses on smaller markets where Apple has not shown interest in opening its own stores. Founded in 2006 in Utah, Simply Mac grew to eight stores by October 2012 when GameStop acquired a 49.9 percent stake in the Apple reseller. In November 2013, GameStop exercised an option to purchase the rest of Simply Mac, which now includes 23 locations focused in the western half of the United States, and GameStop has plans for a significant expansion of the Simply Mac network.

[GameStop CEO Paul] Raines said GameStop’s confidence in rapid growth at the small chains, acquired for about $110 million last year, is buoyed by their strong ties to industry leaders AT&T and Apple.

Steve Bain and Jason Ellis, the executives who built Simply Mac and Spring Mobile, continue to run the operations for GameStop and see strong growth opportunities. After opening 23 stores this year, Bain said, the company plans to open 50 more Simply Mac stores in 2015.

While its stores are smaller and lower profile than many of Apple’s retail stores, Simply Mac’s push to open nearly 75 stores through the end of 2015 appears to dwarf Apple’s own plans in the United States. Apple typically opens around 30 stores per year, but at this point the majority of those are outside of the United States.

The “transformation,” as CEO Paul Raines dubbed it, is intended to keep GameStop growing and leverage its expertise in store operations and buying and selling used devices. He said he envisions GameStop as a “family of specialty retailers that make your favorite technologies affordable and simple.”

As GameStop expands into the lucrative mobile phone and Apple device market, the retailer plans to downsize its video games operations by closing up to 130 of its 6,400 GameStop stores sometime this year. Though video games will remain its primary focus, GameStop CEO Rob Lloyd believes the company’s new technology brands could generate up to $1 billion in revenue and contribute up to 10 percent of GameStop’s revenue by 2016.

This move into Apple’s retail segment comes at a time when Apple is in the middle of a retail transition. The company is awaiting the arrival of retail head Angela Ahrendts, who is completing her transitionary period at Burberry. Apple also is rumored to be working on a mobile payments system under the leadership of Jennifer Bailey, who allegedly left her executive role in online retail to spearhead this new mobile initiative.

Recent Mac and iOS Blog Stories
Catcher to Supply Apple With iPhone 6 Casings as Sales Estimates Climb to 70 Million
Viber Updates iOS App with Redesigned User Interface, Multiple Media Sharing
New Renders Show Off ‘iPhone 6s’ and ‘iPhone 6c’ Concepts
Steve Jobs’ Infamous Temper Lives on at Apple in Bug-Wrangler Kim Vorrath
Apple Releases AirPort Extreme and Time Capsule Firmware Update 7.7.3 With Heartbleed Fix
ElevationLab Debuts Aluminum Elevation Stand for iMac and Apple Displays
Logitech Adds Multi-Angle Viewing to Ultrathin Keyboard, Launches New iPad Cases
First Generation Apple TVs Once Again Able to Connect to iTunes



References to Siri for Apple TV Found in iOS 7.1 Code

Amid persistant rumors that Apple is developing a revamped Apple TV set-top box, new code appearing in iOS 7.1 indicates that the company is indeed working on building in support for Siri voice input on the Apple TV, as highlighted by 9to5Mac. The references are included in both iOS 7.1 and iOS 7.1.1, but not in earlier releases such as iOS 7.0.6.

siri_apple_tv_assistant

The file is a supporting property-list resource for Assistant (Apple’s internal name for Siri), containing information about the feature. The UIDeviceFamily array declares what platforms are compatible with the feature.

As shown by Apple’s documentation, ’1′ and ’2′ represent the iPhone/iPod touch and iPad families. The ’3′ represents the Apple TV family.

References to a new Apple TV model were previously found in iOS 7 builds, and today’s information suggests that voice input and feedback are likely to be included on the new device.

Apple’s launch plans for a new Apple TV box remain unclear, with rumors of a late 2013 launch giving way to reports centering around an introduction in March or April of this year. Those rumors were then quashed by The Loop‘s Jim Dalrymple, leaving uncertainty about Apple’s television plans. A recent product roadmap prediction from KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo indicated that the new Apple TV could arrive around September or October of this year.

Recent Mac and iOS Blog Stories
Catcher to Supply Apple With iPhone 6 Casings as Sales Estimates Climb to 70 Million
Viber Updates iOS App with Redesigned User Interface, Multiple Media Sharing
New Renders Show Off ‘iPhone 6s’ and ‘iPhone 6c’ Concepts
Steve Jobs’ Infamous Temper Lives on at Apple in Bug-Wrangler Kim Vorrath
Apple Releases AirPort Extreme and Time Capsule Firmware Update 7.7.3 With Heartbleed Fix
ElevationLab Debuts Aluminum Elevation Stand for iMac and Apple Displays
Logitech Adds Multi-Angle Viewing to Ultrathin Keyboard, Launches New iPad Cases
First Generation Apple TVs Once Again Able to Connect to iTunes



Apple’s New ‘Powerful’ iPhone 5s Micro-Site Profiles Apps from Latest TV Ad

Apple today unveiled a new section on its website dedicated to the “Powerful” ad that made its prime time television premiere on Tuesday. The commercial promotes the message that with the capabilities of the iPhone 5s “You’re more powerful than you think.”

powerful-website-apps
The accompanying website continues this “Powerful” theme that promotes the iPhone 5s as having the power “to create, shape, and share your life. The power to do everyday things in extraordinary ways, and to do extraordinary things every day.” The new page includes both a high-definition version of the television commercial as well as links to all the apps showcased in the advertisement. The apps include Star Walk [iTunes], Instant Heart Rate [iTunes], Word Lens [iTunes], AmpliTube [iTunes], Luminair [iTunes] and Pacific Rim [iTunes].

The “Powerful” ad features “Gigantic” by the Pixies [iTunes] playing in the background while iPhone 5s owners use their iPhone to play music, create art and even launch amateur rockets. This new television advertisement follows the company’s earlier “Your Verse” campaign that showcases how individuals are using the iPad in amazing ways.

Recent Mac and iOS Blog Stories
Viber Updates iOS App with Redesigned User Interface, Multiple Media Sharing
New Renders Show Off ‘iPhone 6s’ and ‘iPhone 6c’ Concepts
Steve Jobs’ Infamous Temper Lives on at Apple in Bug-Wrangler Kim Vorrath
Apple Releases AirPort Extreme and Time Capsule Firmware Update 7.7.3 With Heartbleed Fix
ElevationLab Debuts Aluminum Elevation Stand for iMac and Apple Displays
Logitech Adds Multi-Angle Viewing to Ultrathin Keyboard, Launches New iPad Cases
First Generation Apple TVs Once Again Able to Connect to iTunes
Apple Releases OS X Security Update for Mavericks, Mountain Lion, and Lion Users



Sprint to Make All Devices Launched After February 11, 2015 Unlockable

sprint_logo-250x124 In an updated unlocking FAQ found on its website (via Android Police), Sprint has stated that it will make all of its devices released after February 11, 2015 unlockable for use on other domestic networks such as AT&T or T-Mobile.

The move is a part of the agreement that the five major U.S. wireless carriers and the Federal Communications Commission signed in December in order to allow customers to unlock their devices and switch carriers if they wish.

I’ve been told by another carrier that Sprint needs to unlock my SIM slot in order to use my phone on the other carrier’s network.

For eligible devices, Sprint will unlock the SIM slot, to the extent that a device SIM slot is capable of being unlocked. It is important to note that not all devices are capable of being unlocked, often because of the manufacturers’ device designs, and that even for those devices capable of being unlocked, not all device functionality may be capable of being unlocked. Specifically, devices manufactured with a SIM slot within the past three years (including, but not limited to, all Apple iPhone devices), cannot be unlocked to accept a different domestic carrier’s SIM for use on another domestic carrier’s network. Sprint has no technological process available to do this. In accordance with Sprint’s voluntary commitment contained within CTIA’s Consumer Code for Wireless Service (“Unlocking Commitment”), Sprint is working to ensure that all devices developed and launched on or after February 11, 2015 are capable of being unlocked domestically.

Last year, the Library of Congress ruled that it was illegal for certain mobile phone owners to unlock their phone unless given permission by their wireless carrier. However, the Obama administration filed a petition with the FCC last September asking that carriers be required to unlock mobile devices, which was then followed by the agreement [PDF] between the FCC and the five major U.S. carriers.

Sprint’s move to implement domestic unlocking in all of its future devices will likely be followed by similar moves from other U.S. carriers, as all wireless providers pledged last December to implement the changes within 12 months.

Recent Mac and iOS Blog Stories
New Renders Show Off ‘iPhone 6s’ and ‘iPhone 6c’ Concepts
Steve Jobs’ Infamous Temper Lives on at Apple in Bug-Wrangler Kim Vorrath
Apple Releases AirPort Extreme and Time Capsule Firmware Update 7.7.3 With Heartbleed Fix
ElevationLab Debuts Aluminum Elevation Stand for iMac and Apple Displays
Logitech Adds Multi-Angle Viewing to Ultrathin Keyboard, Launches New iPad Cases
First Generation Apple TVs Once Again Able to Connect to iTunes
Apple Releases OS X Security Update for Mavericks, Mountain Lion, and Lion Users
Nike Could Partner With Apple to Bring NikeFuel Features to iWatch