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Jim Karpen holds a Ph.D. in literature and writing, and has a love of gizmos. His doctoral dissertation focused on the revolutionary consequences of digital technologies and anticipated some of the developments taking place in the industry today. Jim has been writing about the Internet and technology since 1994 and has been using Apple's visionary products for decades.

Apple Store app -- buy accessories without help of a clerk


Imagine this: you use the Apple Store app (free) to buy an accessory for your iOS device, walk into in Apple Store, take the product off the shelf, and walk out of the store with it. According to MacRumors, this self-checkout capability may be coming as early as this week. Apparently, as you leave the store you'll simply show the clerk your receipt on your iPhone. However, this only applies to accessories.

Top tips for using Siri


Siri understands natural language, and can respond to a wide range of questions and commands. So there really shouldn't be a learning curve for Siri. But in fact you can learn ways to use Siri better, especially if you have a clear understanding of how it can help you. TiPb has posted a list of Top 10 Secret Siri Commands. There's nothing "secret" about them, but this is a great list for helping you get a better idea of some of the things that Siri can do.

NY Times: Apple to build TV with Siri


Siri is the first really powerful natural-language-understanding system in a consumer device. And people love it. Now a blog post on the New York Times website is saying that Apple is expected to build a TV set that will include Siri. Apparently, Steve Jobs felt like TV is broken — that remotes are difficult to use. And Apple tried for years to make an easier interface.

iTunes Match may be coming tomorrow


When Apple announced the iPhone 4S, they also mentioned that iTunes Match would be available by the end of this month. Many people are looking forward to this service, which lets you put your entire music collection in your iCloud library, at a cost of $24.99 per year.

Reports of data speed issues on Sprint iPhone


Sprint, the third-largest cell phone carrier, has been struggling financially for several years, and its new iPhone 4S is expected to be a boon to its bottom line. And to enhance the appeal of its iPhone offering, Sprint has continued its policy of unlimited data — watch all the movies you want on your iPhone. That's good for attracting customers, but not so good at conserving network bandwidth. Now there are reports that some Sprint iPhone 4S users are experiencing pokey data speeds.

Apple expected to offer 4G LTE iPhone in 2012


"4G", "LTE" — what does it all mean? In short, speed. Phone carriers are working hard to implement fourth-generation (4G) networks so that you can have a very speedy Internet connection. How fast? If you live in Texas and have a 4G phone, according to DailyTech, you could see speeds as fast as 42Mbps, with an average of 24Mbps. That's much faster than many home DSL or cable connections. These speeds are available on LTE (long-term evolution) networks, which are now state-of-the-art and are being rolled out across the country. But...

Market analyst says prototypes of Apple TV already being built


Rumors that Apple will be building an actual TV set, not just a settop box, have been building for months. And not only does the new Steve Jobs biography suggest that such a device may be in the works, but also an article on AppleInsider says that Apple may already be building prototypes. It was reported earlier that Apple had invested in manufacturing facilities in Asia in order to secure a supply of displays up to 50 inches.

Steve Jobs bio suggests Apple TV may have been his next big idea


TechCrunch has an interesting article ruminating on the projects that Steve Jobs was working on at the time of his passing. There were reports that he was still making phone calls the day before he died to talk with execs about details of forthcoming products. TechCrunch highlights the passage in the Steve Jobs biography, which came out today, in which he talks about Apple TV — and whether this may be his final "one more thing." In the book, Isaacson writes that Jobs wanted to make TV sets elegant and easy-to-use.

Biography of Steve Jobs due out Monday


A biography of Steve Jobs that had been in the works for a number of years and coincidentally scheduled to be published this fall will be available in bookstores on Monday. Titled Steve Jobs and authored by Walter Isaacson, a respected biographer, the book is based on over 40 interviews with Jobs. Not only is this an authorized biography, but Jobs apparently opened up to Isaacson and revealed much about his life that he hadn't previously disclosed. Jobs told Isaacson that one of his motives for doing so was to let his children know him better.

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