MacRumors reports that UK retailer John Lewis is offering a free 3-year guarantee on certain Apple products including iPads, MacBooks, and iMacs for purchases via the online store until June 28.

The offer applies to all Macs and iPads available on the online store, which all come with a free 3-year guarantee, as well as the opportunity to purchase 3 more years Added Care with accidental damage at a discounted rate. How much the Added Care costs depends on the product.

Apple’s brand new 10.5-inch iPad Pro is included in the free 3-year guarantee deal, although currently the store doesn’t have any in stock, but hopefully should have them before the offer deadline expires on June 28, so be sure to check back.

iPhones are not left out from the deal, as John Lewis is also offering £50 off any iPhone when purchased with an Apple Watch, with a 2-year guarantee for both products included.

Source: U.K. Retailer John Lewis Offering Free Three-Year Guarantee on all Macs and iPads Until June 28

Foxconn chairman Terry Gou has told Reuters, via AppleInsider, that Apple, Dell, and Kingston are among the many companies that are teaming up with Foxconn to bid for Toshiba’s memory unit. Gou said that Apple CEO and the Apple board of directors approved the bid.

According to Gou, Amazon is also close to joining the bid, and Cisco, Google, and Microsoft are all in talks about doing so as well.

Toshiba will be announcing its preferred bidder on June 15, provided the Japanese government doesn’t succeed in getting the announcement delayed while it works against the clock to finalise a bid from its own consortium.

Toshiba is said to favour the bid from American chipmaker Broadcom, in partnership with American equity company Silver Lake, which is said to be worth 2.2 trillion yen ($20 billion).

Many commentators do not expect Foxconn’s bid to succeed due to the fact that Taiwan-based Foxconn has close links with China, and the Japanese government has said that it would step in to prevent any deal that resulted in such vital chip technology being taken out of Japan. However, Gou today said that there is no Chinese capital involved in the Foxconn consortium, and that Foxconn’s own stake in Toshiba’s memory business would not exceed 40%.

Source: Foxconn head says Apple & Dell are key partners in joint bid for Toshiba's memory unit

Recode reports that Apple is about to make some big changes to its incredibly popular Podcasts app, many of which will be very welcome to podcasters.

First of all, the revamped version of the app will see Apple providing podcasters with basic analytics that will tell them when their listeners play individual episodes, what part of the episode they listen to, which parts they skip, and when they stop listening to the podcast.

What makes this so remarkable is that presently Apple gives virtually no information at all to podcast creators about their audience’s listening habits, only letting them know when someone has downloaded an episode.

So basically, all those amazing, and, in some cases, now very rich and famous, podcasters out there, as well as their advertisers, have had no information to guide them when they create, or finance, their podcasts. That makes the success of the medium all the more remarkable, when you think about it! As Recode points out, “this is a subtle but very big change.”

“It may look obscure, but this is the biggest thing to happen to the podcast business since Serial first when nuclear” tweeted Matthew Lieber, president of Gimlet Media, the podcast studio responsible for Startup and Crimetown.

While some critics of the move think that it might actually spoil the podcast format that has worked so well until now, it is generally an exciting prospect for podcasters.

Source: Apple is going to let podcast creators — and advertisers — see what listeners actually like

Apple has today announced that it is to open its first ever retail store in Taiwan, writes MacRumors. The news came via a posting on the company’s official Taiwan website, which also revealed that the store will be situated over 1,322 square meters on the ground and basement floors of Taipei 101, the fourth tallest skyscraper in the world, which is located in the Xinyi District.

As yet there’s no official opening date for the store, but according to Taiwanese website AppleDaily, it could be as soon as the end of June. Indeed, a translation of Apple’s official announcement says that the store will be opening “soon.”

The rest of the announcement shows just how good Apple is at taking into account the customs and traditions of its customers in any given city.

Store Images: AppleDaily

Source: Apple Announces Imminent Opening of Taiwan's First Apple Retail Store

Niantic has announced that it is to hold the first ever real-world Pokémon Go event in celebration of both the one-year anniversary of the game’s release and the milestone of 750 million global downloads.

First off we have the in-game Solstice Event, which will kick off on June 13. This will feature Fire-type and Ice-type Pokémon, big XP bonuses for accurate PokéBall throws, and discounts on Lucky Egg purchases in the in-game store.

“Soon after” the Solstice Event, Niantic says that it will release a new update that is “focused on collaborative group gameplay features that will get you playing Pokémon Go in fun new ways.” Maybe this will be the player vs. player feature that everyone is hoping for, with Niantic saying that prior to the launch of the update it will have to disable Gyms “for a short period of time.”

And that’s not all the excitement, as Niantic has also announced its first real-world Pokémon Go event, Pokémon Go Fest Chicago. The event will be held on July 22 in downtown Chicago, Illinois, USA, at Grant Park. Niantic doesn’t give too many clues as to what might be happening at the event, however, simply saying that there will be “a ton of exciting festivities” to look forward to. More will be revealed on Monday, June 19, at 10:00 a.m. PDT at PokemonGoLive.com/Fest.

Niantic says that European Trainers can expect their own events throughout the continent from June to September in partnership with Uniball-Rodamco shopping centres. There will also be a special Pokémon event in Yokohama, Japan, in August, called “Pikachu Outbreak.”

Source: Niantic

9to5 Mac reports that Amazon’s senior VP of Devices, David Limp, has been talking about the threat, or not, to Amazon’s Echo from Apple’s newly announced HomePod. Talking to USA Today, Limp said that it should certainly be possible for Siri and Alexa to talk to each other, although he wasn’t sure that Apple would be so accommodating on the matter.

When asked by USA Today if he considered HomePod to be a serious competitor to Amazon’s Alexa product range, Limp said that HomePod was “a little different philosophically” to Amazon’s products because of its “premium price.” Limp even pointed out that you can get eight Echo Dots for the same price as one HomePod.
The early hands-on reviews for HomePod suggest that it is every bit the hi-fi-quality device that Apple has been promising.

Source: Amazon exec says Siri & Alexa should be able to talk to each other, HomePod not a huge threat


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