After Apple's earning's call last week, Apple CEO Tim Cook called together Apple employees for a meeting in the Cupertino Town Hall. In that meeting, he discussed topics such as the recent earnings call and Apple's falling share price, the new employee perk of a discount on unlocked iPhones and recent things that happened with regards to operations and the supply chain. Cook also spoke about Apple Retail as a whole, competition with Android, and even China, the new market for Apple.
Apple's supplier responsibility progress report has been updated for 2013. The highlights include how Apple achieved a 92% compliance rating for a 60-hour work week, how 392 audits maintain Apple's high standards at all levels, and how Apple extended their worker training programs to empower more workers and more managers. But by far the best highlight is how Apple terminated a contract with a supplier that employed underage workers, showing they're serious about this supplier responsibility thing.
ILounge spills the beans on the next iPad, iPhone, and cheaper iPhone. Editor-in-Chief Jeremy Horwitz had the opportunity to inspect a near-final model of the fifth generation iPad, and he says it incorporates the no-bezel design of the iPad mini, and will be set for an October launch. The iPhone 5S will remain virtually unchanged from the current iPhone, apart from the usual spec bumps and camera improvements. And finally, the new iPad mini is targeted for an October release also, and will feature a Retina display.
A sale has started on the Mac App Store, and interestingly, it's Apple that are the ones doing the sale, not individual companies/apps. The sale on productivity apps on the Mac App Store will run for three weeks, with the first week already in full swing and offering apps such as Clear and TaskPaper on special; this week's sale apps are for prioritising, and it's expected the next two weeks' apps will be from the organise and utilise categories, respectively.
Apple has seeded the fifth iOS 6.1 beta to developers. It's available from Apple's Developer page right now for registered developers, but regular users like you and I will have to wait until the public release date, which is currently unknown.
Graham Spencer at MacStories has a piece on dual-screen AirPlay games and apps. Many games and apps might allow you to stream the same content to your Apple TV via AirPlay, showing you the same content on both screens in the process, but very few apps show you different content on both screens. Off the top of my head, I know of two apps that take advantage of dual screen AirPlay: The Incident and Real Racing 2. But Spencer says dual-screen AirPlay is a huge advantage, one can be leveraged by developers more than it currently is.
Rene Ritchie from iMore imagines a skeuomorphic-free, all-aluminium iOS 7. Cutting down on the stitched leather, green felt and wooden bookshelves might seem like a good idea at first, and it does kind of work in the mockups he's put together, but do you remember the last time Apple used brushed aluminium across the board? Stephen Hackett does.
Anandtech doesn't usually review such mundane things as iPhone cases, but when they do, they review one of the more expensive cases currently available. Their review of the Element Sector 5 case describes a product that is not only aesthetically pleasing and visually impressive, but also one that's well designed and doesn't adversely affect wireless performance.
People just seem to love their MAME emulators (also see PIN numbers, ATM machines, and LCD displays) on iOS, but Apple keeps removing them from the App Store. But if you're quick, you can pick up Gridlee, a game based on an emulator wrapper that means you can send your own MAME ROMs to the app via iTunes to enjoy your arcade fix. And it even supports the iCade, if you've got one of those.
Wunderlist is still a pretty great task app for getting things done, but you don't hear about it that much these days. Credit to Mac AppStorm, though, for the pun-tastic headline of "does Wunderlist 2 satisfy our wanderlust for new GTD apps?" Spoiler: somewhat, but not really. Reminders has iCloud syncing across all of Apple's platforms these days, and it comes with every Mac, iPhone, and iPad. So what's the appeal of Wunderlist?
Scott McNulty dreads going to the Apple Store. There are people everywhere to the point of overcrowding all the time, it's hard to find a blue shirt who's willing to just take your money for a thing you want to buy, and everyone's jostling for some FaceTime with a Genius or a demo Mac. For a company that's all about great customer experiences, the Apple Store can be anything but.
There's a funny, probably unintentionally-hilarious post on reasons to not upgrade to the iPhone 5 over at Ars Technica that you should read purely for the lulz. Not because it brings up some extremely valid points about the downfalls of the iPhone 5 over the iPhone 4/4S, but because the very thought of not buying the latest shiny is something Anthony would frown upon.
An iPad mini is the exact size of a Moleskine notebook, down to the corner radius. Above image via Flickr user shaderlab.