Blind Bargains

The Weekly Apple Rundown: Spring Forward Edition

Let's see... there was the official return of VLC to the iOS app store, iAssociate saw some updates and, oh I know, some small mention of an event in March for news this past week. An event I say? Yeah, nothing major I'm sure considering that we have a launch of a new product in April. I doubt anyone will be covering it really. But, and this is a mighty big but, if you are interested in hearing Tim and co go on and on about time pieces you will want to catch the stream of the event on March 9th at 10 AM PT.

Of course now with a solid day for the next event, this opens the proverbial door for tons of rumors to spring forward as well. This week saw talk of a possible release of iOS 8.2 and musings as to when 8.3 would emerge.
It's half a year away until the 6S comes to light, however, hardware features are in full bloom. Get ready to hear a lot about, gulp, "Force Touch". And then rounding out the rumor farm for the week is this...
Apple rumored to overhaul its Genius Bar, add 'Concierge' service

Tim Cook Tour 2015 seems to still be in full swing with no signs of stopping. The gang over at Daily Tech News Show noted this and even speculated as to why, and discussed what was notable about the many public sightings of the Apple CEO. Choice sound bites were gobbled up in the UK during a visit to Apple Store locations. And more talk of Apple's pledges on data security topped headlines.

However, some lucky grads over at George Washington U get to brag about the guest speaker at their end of year thing. Wonder how many relatives came out of the woodwork for an invite to that one eh? "Hi, I know I've missed six of your birthdays and I've never sent you a Xmas gift really, but don't you go to GWU?".

Remember the good old days of patent battles? Samsung would go and do something stupid, Apple would sue them, Samsung would find an odd legal patent for a lesser known thing'a'ma'jigger and ask the Judge to ban all Apple sales? Well, it's 2015 and you can take Samsung out of that last intro and insert Ericsson instead. Moreover, in not so funny lawsuits, Smartflash defeated Apple and won itself 533 million dollars. And then they took their winnings to Vegas. Okay, they didn't. They did let it ride though by turning around and filing another suit against Apple off the success of the previous one.
Ride all the way to the bank! Or so this article speculates, that Apple isn't wanting to make cars as much as create the tech that goes into them... for patent and license purposes.

And why not take a shot at Apple in the courtroom as your business model? It's not like Q4 saw them make more money from the iOS app store than had previously been recorded. Or that Apple holds more money in the stock market than twice that of Exxon.
The iPhone 6, and 6 Plus, are selling like crazy all over the world. Even in China ... no wait, what's this? Alright, fine, no problems. Apple will just use "Alchemy" to talk themselves out of this situation. Oh, I'm getting a note that this refers to software not actual magical properties and incantations. My bad.

In all seriousness, this week saw a lot of talk about money and Apple. Here are some examples of the pendulum going to extremes.
Get ready for 75k Diamond Apple Watches
Why You Won't Be Able To Buy An Apple Car
And then there is this article that hits some key water cooler discussion points....
Does Apple’s future depend on income inequality?

Regardless of the above, Apple is still on a hiring spree and many have no qualms about joining up with them.
For those who are based in the real world, Apple is looking for a QA person to join the Access team.
For those who would rather live in the virtual world, they are looking for hardware and software peeps to assist in the making of virtual displays.

We are light this week on Apple Watch speculation. App Advice is here to pick up the slack while we are in San Diego this week for CSUN with a Watch-centric site.
Some people can't wait for that new watch though as seen by this Developer who managed to connect Androidware to his iPhone. Just wait a month and a half can't ya man? Sheesh.
He is so impressionable, don't show him this article about why some should drop iTunes Connect for Google Play Music. He might just fall to the dark side completely and be lost forever.

From the "I don't have much to say" department, these three stories.
Phablets for low vision and long-sighted users - summary
Accessible Apple: How The Apple Watch Will Improve Security for the Visually Impaired

Security news went on a strange winding road this past week. It started with discussions post Super Fish with iMore talking about how to avoid some types of badware.
How to keep your Mac safe from adware like Genio and Installmac
Lifehacker followed with this article.
Some Mac Apps Now Come with Bundled Crapware, So Hone Your BS Detector
Later, iMore came back with this one on shoddy security reporting.
plus this one on if you need antivirus on your Mac or not.

Lastly, to show just how key word searches can bring up the craziest things, here are two water-related links.
Top rabbi drowns iPhone
Woman electrocuted after dropping iPhone in bathtub

We'll be on the road for CSUN coverage this week. But simmer down, I've got a little column all lined up for you. It's informative, it's interesting and most of all it's not time-sensitive materials. Have a great week and keep your RSS readers tuned to Blind Bargains for CSUN 2015!

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Joe Steinkamp is no stranger to the world of technology, having been a user of video magnification and blindness related electronic devices since 1979. Joe has worked in radio, retail management and Vocational Rehabilitation for blind and low vision individuals in Texas. He has been writing about the A.T. Industry for 15 years and podcasting about it for almost a decade.

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