The Verge reports that Verizon Wireless has announced that its current unlimited data plan is no more, and will be replaced by three new options: Go Unlimited (from $75 for a single line); Beyond Unlimited ($85 for first line); and Business Unlimited. Apparently, these new plans are all much more complicated than the previous plan, which was introduced back in February.
Also, and possibly the main cause of the complaints about the new schemes, the Go Unlimited plan throttles all smartphone video streaming to 480p DVD quality. “Moving forward, HD video on all legacy plans will also match Beyond Unlimited’s HD quality,” said Verizon in its press release about the changes. This means that eventually, the maximum video quality that Verizon users will be able to achieve is 720p streaming on iPhones and 1080p on iPads, and nothing higher than that whatsoever, even if you’re using a laptop connected to your mobile hotspot.
“We’re doing this to ensure all customers have a great experience on our network since there is no visible difference in quality on a smartphone or tablet when video is shown at higher resolutions,” said Verizon. Verizon also claims that “nobody can see a difference” between 720p and 1080p, but as The Verge says, it does not provide any evidence to support this statement.
Source: Verizon’s good unlimited data plan is now three bad unlimited plans
MacRumors reports that Apple has released several new videos on its YouTube channel that focus on new iPad and iPad Pro features in the forthcoming iOS 11. The videos are all a little under 1 minute long, and are all very similar in style, featuring a pair of hands showing how some of the new features work.
The self-explanatory titles of the iPad videos include “How to get the most out of your hands with iOS 11,” “How to harness the power of the amazing new dock,” “How to manage and fly through your files with iOS,” and “How to get things done more quickly,” for iPad. The titles of the iPad Pro videos include “How to mark stuff up with Apple Pencil,” and “How to effortlessly scan, sign, and send a document.”
Underneath the videos you’ll also find brief descriptions of some of the new features, such as “You can add even more apps, open recent files, and drag and drop files using the new spring-loaded Dock,” and, “With the new Files app, you can find all your important files in one convenient place. Browse recent files, manage favorites, and even access files from your favorite cloud services.”
Source: Apple Shares New Series of How To Videos Focusing on iPad and iOS 11
According to a new report from DigiTimes, via 9to5 Mac, sources in the Apple Watch supply chain are saying that orders continue to rise, with 4.5 million shipments expected in Q4, which would mean total shipments for 2017 would top 15 million units.
And it’s even better news for Apple next year, with those same sources saying that they expect the figure to rise to 20 million units in 2018.
Because Apple doesn’t divulge Apple Watch sales figures, it can be harder than usual for experts to make sales predictions, and there are often conflicting reports. For example, in May, Strategy Analytics said that Apple had overtaken Fitbit to become the world’s top wearables vendor, yet in contrast, just this month, Canalys said that Apple had fallen behind Xiaomi and Fitbit in Q2. It’s possible that was indeed the case, but then it’s also possible that one or other sets of figures were wrong.
However, even given these discrepancies, it’s probably a pretty safe bet that sales of the Apple Watch will increase next year, with the forthcoming Series 3 Apple Watch set to have LTE connectivity. Also, a newly revealed deal with healthcare firm Aetna to provide subsidized Apple Watches to its 23 million customers could help sales.
Source: Apple Watch suppliers say shipments expected to reach 15m this year, 20m next
According to an exclusive report on Bloomberg, movie studies are weighing up whether or not to defy the objections of cinema chains and proceed with a plan that they have been hammering out with Apple to offer digital rental of movies just weeks after the movies first hit theatres.
Bloomberg’s sources say that some of the biggest studios in the world, including Warner Bros. and Universal Pictures, are continuing to hold talks with Apple and Comcast about proceeding with the plan with or without having the theatre chains on their side.
All of the leading Hollywood studios, minus Walt Disney Co., want to launch a new product that will compensate for the fall in DVD sales. All parties have talked about sharing a portion of the revenue from the proposed premium video on demand with the cinema chains in order to get them to agree. However, the cinema chains are holding out for a long-term commitment of up to 10 years for the revenue split, which the studios have still not agreed to.
It’s thought that the studios will be able to finalise their deals with distributors such as Apple and Comcast by early 2018 to offer digital downloads of major movies as soon as 2 weeks after they first appear in theatres. These deals would then enable the studios to go ahead even without the blessing of the theatre chains.
Source: Hollywood, Apple Said to Mull Rental Plan, Defying Theaters
TouchArcade reports that Bandai Namco has just soft-launched Tekken Mobile in Canada. The all-new game has been built exclusively for iOS and Android by Bandai Namco Studios Vancouver.
The free-to-play game uses a Waza Card system with tapping for combos and special attacks. There are more than 100 characters in the game, with over 20 special moves for each character. Tekken has always had good story modes, as well as being a pure fighting game, and Tekken Mobile is no exception, according to TouchArcade, with a strong Story Mode, and other modes including Dojo Challenge.
PocketGamer writes that along with the game’s soft launch, Bandai Namco has also released a 47-second trailer to announce the launch. And if that leaves you wanting to know more, and you’re not lucky enough to live in Canada and be able to download the game immediately, you can pre-register at the official website where the more people who register, the more exclusive rewards you’ll earn when the game is launched globally. The first reward to be unlocked in this way is 10,000 coins and 100 gems, but there’s still some way to go, so hurry up and pre-register, everyone!
Sources: 'Tekken Mobile' Soft Launches in Canada, Global Pre-Registrations Now Live
The popular fighting game Tekken is coming to iOS and Android
9to5 Mac reports today on some stunning new 4K drone footage courtesy of Matthew Roberts, which gives a great view of the atrium of the Steve Jobs Theater. It appears that the building work is progressing steadily, and in the video you can see some finishing touches, such as the solar panels that all appear to be in place. Once they are fully up and running, they will be able to generate 17 megawatts of power in peak daylight, providing approximately 75% of the power that the campus requires, with the rest of the power being provided by on-site fuel cells.
The theatre will be kept cool in the hottest months of the year by a ventilation system with natural airflow, aided by the window shades. With these measures in place, Apple thinks that no artificial heating or cooling will be required for 9 months of the year.
In the video, aside from lots of glorious footage of the main campus, you can also see two R&D buildings in the southern part of the campus, where Jony Ive’s industrial design and human interface teams will be based.
Source: Latest 4K drone video shows landscaping progress at Apple Park, closer look at Steve Jobs Theater atrium
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