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Download iOS 8.1 and Get Ready for Apple Pay!

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Apple promised iOS 8.1 would be out this week and it is. The update uses only 126 MB but adds features like Apple Pay for the new iPhone 6 and 6 Plus, as well as iCloud Photo Library and integrated SMS messaging for iPad and Mac computers. Those are the new features, but of course there are bug fixes and reliability enhancements.



Building a Smarter Home with Ivee and Iris

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Apple didn't release a smart home device this year, but instead unleashed HomeKit, an SDK to help third parties do what they do best... make home automation equipment that, now, can be based on Apple's standards. Several vendors have stepped up to the plate, which is good because it's hard to find one vendor that has everything a smart home owner would need.



Siri Is Much More Than She Seems

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I just read a touching and uplifting story about an autistic boy befriending Siri. I am a huge Siri fan and have written about her more than once in this blog, but I have a new found admiration for the programmers who developed Siri.



SoundHound and TouchTunes - Convergence of Online and On-Premises Music Services

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If you like and use the SoundHound music app (free), which can guess melodies like a musical savant, then you might want to add TouchTunes (free). SoundHound recently announced a team up with TouchTunes: an in-venue entertainment and music platform that provides service at over 60,000 locations. With SoundHound and TouchTunes together, you can now get your online music choices queued up when visiting any TouchTunes supported location!



The Biggest iPad News May Be the Deals on Older iPads

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The enhancements to the iPad Air and iPad mini were expected and appreciated, but they still come with Apple's premium price. Apple has managed to make the iPad family the top selling tablet, but it's still priced higher than typical Android devices.  If you have embraced the Apple ecosystem of apps, music, contacts, ebooks and more, those Android units just don't fit the bill.



Apple Event Takeaway - Driving Nails in the PC Coffin!

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Apple didn't announce anything earth-shatteringly out of this world today. What they announced was more of the same steady excellence that marks all their product releases. More wireless integration and excellent cloud service synchronicity across their product line that will make it all but impossible to want or need to stay connected to the PC realm. If you are a PC, your world became a little bleaker today.



How Do the iPad Air 2 and iPad Mini 3 Stack Up?

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Today's event showcasing two new iPads (alongside an iMac and Mac Mini) came and went without many unexpected revelations. This was in part due to the constant leaks and incessant rumors that seem to be everywhere prior to Apple's press events.



Apple iPad Announcement Roundup

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Nothing Apple introduced today was truly unexpected, yet it still managed to impress in a big way. Here's a rundown of what excited us most at today's keynote.



Apple Watch SDK and More Great App Developer News

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App developers heard some great news today when Tim Cook announced that WatchKit, the software development kit for building apps for the upcoming Apple Watch will be released next month (November)!

As I discussed previously in my Developing Next-Generation Apps for the Apple Watch post, this provides a great opportunity for app developers to get in the ground floor of a new technology and get noticed.



iPad Air 2 Cellular Works with Multiple Carriers!

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When speculating about the iPhone 6, I postulated that Apple could do something revolutionary and make a single LTE model that worked with multiple carriers. It didn't happen, but when I purchased my (second) iPhone 6 from Radio Shack, the clerk and I discussed how the technology is already there with LTE and SIM cards, and it would make inventory so much easier. Instead of stocking AT&T, Verizon, and Sprint models, stores could just stock the single SKU. It didn't happen with the iPhone 6, but today Apple did it with the iPad Air 2!



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