Best Buy Accepting Apple TV 4 Orders for Store Pickup on November 4

Best Buy is now accepting Apple TV 4 pre-orders on its U.S. website for in-store pickup or delivery beginning Wednesday, November 4. The electronics retailer is carrying the new Apple TV in 32GB and 64GB models for $149.99 and $199.99 respectively alongside an optional two-year AppleCare Protection Plan for $29.

Apple has not confirmed when the new Apple TV will be available at Apple Stores in the U.S. and other launch countries, but next week is a possibility based on Apple’s own shipping estimates and Best Buy’s in-store release date. Personal Pickup for the new Apple TV is currently unavailable through the Apple Online Store.

Apple began taking online orders for the new Apple TV a few days ago, and the first set-top boxes will begin shipping to customers later this week. The earliest deliveries should arrive on October 30 for those who opted for one-day shipping, while standard shipping delivery estimates range between November 2-6.

Apple TV 4 orders have shifted to „Preparing for Shipment“ status for many customers.

Best Buy is a convenient option for prospective Apple TV 4 buyers that prefer in-store pickup and do not have an Apple Store within close proximity. The electronics retailer has around 1,050 stores in the U.S., in addition to nearly 200 locations in Canada. The chain also operates in Mexico.

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Ka-ching! Apple cranks up Mac prices in 7 countries

Apple is ramping up the prices for its entire Mac lineup in seven countries around the world — but don’t blame Cupertino! Customers in Australia, Brazil, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Norway, and Thailand will all be paying up to 20 percent more for their MacBook, MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, Mac Pro, and Mac mini devices […]

(via Cult of Mac – Tech and culture through an Apple lens)


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Apple Expanding Maps Transit Directions to Boston and Sydney

Apple today updated its iOS 9 features page to highlight two new cities where transit directions in the Maps app are now available: Sydney, Australia and Boston, Massachusetts. Sydney and Boston are the first two cities to gain transit information beyond the first wave launch cities.

Transit directions within Maps became available alongside the launch of iOS 9. The first areas that incorporated public transit information into Maps included Baltimore, Maryland; Berlin, Germany; Chicago, Illinois; London, England; Mexico City, Mexico, New York City, New York; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; Washington, DC; and Toronto, Canada. Transit directions are also available within hundreds of cities in China.

Apple is planning to expand the availability of transit directions to other cities going forward, with major metropolitan areas being a priority for the company. It appears transit information in Sydney and Boston may still be rolling out as it is not yet accessible to all users in Apple Maps.

Today’s transit update follows recent news that Apple will soon shut down HopStop, the mapping company that it purchased in 2013. The HopStop service offered detailed subway, bus, train, taxi, walking and biking directions in more than 600 cities throughout the U.S., Canada, Europe, Australia, and New Zealand, and has likely played a major part in the development of the long-awaited transit feature within Apple Maps.



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Apple Watch Launches in Belgium, Finland, Norway and Poland on October 9

Apple has updated its regional websites for Belgium, Finland, Norway and Poland to announce the Apple Watch will be available on October 9.

Belgium, Finland, Norway and Poland will be part of the sixth Apple Watch launch wave:

April 24: Australia, Canada, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, U.K. and U.S.
June 26: Italy, Mexico, Singapore, South Korea, Spain, Switzerland and Taiwan
July 17: The Netherlands, Sweden, Thailand
July 31: New Zealand, Russia, Turkey
September 25: Austria, Denmark, Ireland
October 9: Belgium, Finland, Norway and Poland

Apple Watch sales have also expanded to dozens of Apple Premium Resellers this month.



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Apple Watch Launches in Austria, Denmark and Ireland September 25

Apple has updated its regional websites for Austria, Denmark and Ireland to announce the Apple Watch will be available on September 25. Apple Watch models with prices were also added to the Apple Store app in Norway, but no release date has been provided.

MacRumors previously reported the Apple Watch was expected to launch in Austria, Denmark and India this month, leaving India as the sole country of the three that has yet to announce an Apple Watch release date.

Austria, Denmark and Ireland will be part of the fifth launch wave since April:

April 24: Australia, Canada, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, U.K. and U.S.
June 26: Italy, Mexico, Singapore, South Korea, Spain, Switzerland and Taiwan
July 17: The Netherlands, Sweden, Thailand
July 31: New Zealand, Russia, Turkey
September 25: Austria, Denmark, Ireland

Apple Watch sales have also expanded to dozens of Apple Premium Resellers this month.



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Apple Likely Filed ‘tvOS’ Trademark for New Apple TV in November 2014

An overnight report from 9to5Mac claims the new operating system for the revamped Apple TV will be called „tvOS“, and it appears Apple may indeed have moved to trademark that term as long ago as November 2014.

A series of trademark filings for the name were made in mid-to-late May in a number of countries by a company called Television OnStream LLC, which appears to be a shell corporation created just days earlier and based out the Corporation Trust Center in Delaware. Apple commonly uses this tactic to hide its trademark filings, although many other companies employ similar strategies.

The mid-May timing is also interesting given it occurred just a few weeks ahead of WWDC where Apple was rumored to be introducing the new Apple TV until what appeared to be a last-minute decision to push back the announcement to this month.

All of the May trademark applications cite a priority date of November 2014 for a filing made in Jamaica, yet another of Apple’s typical strategies for hiding trademarks. Jamaica is a frequent location for Apple’s initial filings as the country does not publish an online database of trademark filings, making it difficult to track them down.

In another similarity to Apple’s previous trademark patterns, Television OnStream LLC conveniently shortens to an acronym of „tvOS“, much as Apple previously hid its „iPad“ trademark behind a company named IP Application Development.

One final similarity between the „tvOS“ filing and known Apple trademarks is the use of specific law firms to handle the filings. For example, Television OnStream used London-based firm Locke Lord to handle its Italian filing, and Apple used the same firm to protect its „watch OS“ trademark in Italy earlier this year. In Turkey, the same trademark lawyer handled both Apple’s „watch OS“ filing and Television OnStream’s „tvOS“ application, and in Mexico both companies used the law firm of Arochi & Lindner to handle their filings.

As is common with these filings, there is no concrete link between Apple and the new „tvOS“ trademark, but given recent rumors and a number of similarities to Apple’s past behavior in hiding trademark filings, it appears likely Apple is indeed behind the „tvOS“ applications.

(Thanks, Rodney and Lennart!)



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Apple TV Gains Updated NFL Channel With Game Pass Integration

The Apple TV’s existing NFL Now channel was today revamped, changing the name to „NFL“ and adding support for Game Pass subscriptions. Through the updated channel, NFL fans who have a Game Pass subscription can watch on-demand NFL games and live out-of-market preseason games on the Apple TV for the first time.

In late July, the NFL did away with its existing NFL Game Rewind program, which previously gave customers in the United States access to on-demand NFL games after they aired on broadcast television. Game Rewind was replaced with Game Pass, with access being added to the Apple TV and the NFL Mobile app on the iPhone and the iPad.

The prior NFL Now channel that was on the Apple TV was limited to historic videos, breaking news, and game highlights rather than complete games as the NFL’s contracts with television providers have previously prevented it from showing full game content on the television through the Apple TV.

Game Pass includes live access to most out-of-market preseason games, aside from those that are nationally broadcast, plus on-demand regular season, playoff, and Super Bowl games that are available after they air on broadcast television.

Game Pass is available in the United States, Bermuda, Antigua, the Bahamas, any U.S. territories, possessions and commonwealths (including American Samoa, Guam, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands), and Mexico. An NFL Game Pass subscription is priced at $99.99 and access to content will last until July 31, 2016.

NFL fans outside of the United States also have access to an international „Game Pass“ service that offers up live games and on-demand content, which confusingly shares the same name as the new service available in the United States.

(Thanks, Dale!)



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