Apple to Open $25 Million Technology Development Site in India

Apple plans to open a $25 million technology development site that’ll span 250,000 square feet in Hyderabad, India, according to ZDNet. The site will open its „innovation center“ in June of this year before ramping up to full operations by the end of the year.

The new centre will be built on 250,000 square feet of land in the real estate firm Tishman Speyer’s WaveRock facility at Hyderabad’s IT corridor at a cost of $25 million (150 crore rupees). It is anticipated to create 4,500 jobs for locals. IT majors such as Infosys, Wipro, Microsoft, and Cognizant have already set up their offices in the IT corridor.

ZDNet says the development center will be used to work on maps. Jayesh Ranjan, Secretary to IT in Telangana, the state in which Hyderabad resides, told ZDNet that Apple „has not looked at cities only in India, but across many places in Europe and other parts of the world.“

Rajan notes that Apple choosing Hyderabad is a „strong endorsement of the city as a major IT hub in the country.“ Microsoft also has offices in the city and plans to expand its operations while Google has pledged to open a headquarters in Hyderabad, making it the biggest technology campus in South Asia.

In 2006, Apple opened a massive support center in Bangalore, but closed it shortly thereafter. While Apple keeps most of its design and development within the United States, it does own several research and development sites around the world, including in Israel and Ireland. In late 2014, the company announced that it would open an R&D center in Yokohama, Japan. In January, Apple announced that it would open iOS development centers in Europe, starting in Italy.

On a whole, India is becoming increasingly important to Apple’s business. Last July, the company noted that its growth in India was over 90 percent while Apple’s sales in the country topped $1 billion in a fiscal year for the first time. Tim Cook has also mentioned that Apple was interested in expanding its manufacturing base in the country. Currently, Apple is close to gaining approval to open retail stores in India.

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Apple to Open $25 Million Technology Development Site in India

Apple Stores Now Offering Belkin Screen Protector Application

As of today, Apple Stores across the United States and around the world are offering a new system that allows Apple Store employees to apply Belkin-branded screen protectors for iPhone 6, 6s, 6 Plus, and 6s Plus customers. Many stores across the world began rolling out the Belkin ScreenCare+ Application System last week, but the system is officially available in retail stores starting this morning.

Belkin’s ScreenCare+ Application System lets Apple Store employees accurately and precisely apply screen protectors using a ScreenCare+ machine. When a customer purchases either a Belkin TrueClear Invisiglass Screen Protector or a Belkin TrueClear Anti-Glare Screen Protector, an Apple retail employee who has been trained in the application method will bring the ScreenCare+ machine from the back of the store.

Using the machine, the employee will clean a customer’s iPhone display and then apply the screen protector directly in front of the customer. Should a mistake be made during the application process, a new screen protector will be applied at no cost to the customer.

The Belkin screen protector application service should greatly cut down on the hassle involved with applying a screen protector at home. With Belkin’s machine, there’s less room for error as alignment is automatic and there’s little chance of dust or debris accidentally getting stuck under the screen protector.

ScreenCare+ is available at Apple Stores worldwide, but screen protector application is limited to Apple’s latest iPhones – the iPhone 6, 6s, 6 Plus, and 6s Plus. Belkin’s Invisiglass screen protector is made from an ultra-thin, flexible glass that absorbs shock and is shatterproof while preserving the natural feel of the iPhone. The Anti-Glare screen protector reduces glare to improve visibility in bright light while also protecting the iPhone display from damage.

Screen protectors can be purchased from Apple retail stores and applied by Apple Store employees starting immediately.

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Apple Stores Now Offering Belkin Screen Protector Application

Website lets you be a bigger blowhard than Donald Trump

The headlines that once elevated Donald Trump now predict his fall from presidential politics. If his second-place showing in the Iowa caucuses is an indication, the comedy will soon turn toward Ted Cruz. Variety even magazine headlined one story: “Donald Trump: Is the Joke Over?” It doesn’t have to be, thanks to a website that […]

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


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Website lets you be a bigger blowhard than Donald Trump

Apple Adds 20 New Flyover Locations Around the World, New Maps Info in Taiwan and Finland

Apple today added 20 new Flyover locations to Apple Maps on Mac and iOS, highlighting landmarks and features across several countries including France, Italy, Japan, Australia, Switzerland, Austria, Germany, the UK, South Africa, and the United States.

For those unfamiliar with the Flyover feature in Apple Maps, it lets users see photo-realistic 3D videos of select locations, with tools for zooming, panning, and rotating to get a closer look at notable landmarks and points of interest. Some of the locations listed may have previously been available as Flyover destinations, but were just added to Apple’s list of Flyover locations.

The full list of new Flyover locations is available below:

Adelaide, Australia

Amiens, France

La Rochelle, France

Nantes, France

Toulouse, France

Berne, Switzerland

Bremen, Germany

Columbus, Ohio

Louisville, Kentucky

South Bend, Indiana

Springfield, Missouri

Tucson, Arizona

Dresden, Germany

Eindhoven, Netherlands

Johannesburg, South Africa

Middlesbrough, UK

Salzburg, Austria

Taormina, Italy

Toyoma, Japan

Virgin Islands

Flyover was first introduced in 2012, but over the last four years, Apple has steadily added new Flyover locations to the Maps app. In 2015, Apple updated some major Flyover locations with real-time animated landmarks, making the Flyover experience even more immersive. Many Flyover locations have an additional City Tour feature that walks users through different landmarks in each city.

Along with new Flyover locations, the Maps app has been updated in Taiwan and Finland. In Taiwan, iOS users now have access to traffic information, and in Finland, the Nearby feature introduced in iOS 9 is now active, allowing users to get information on local businesses located near them.

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Apple Adds 20 New Flyover Locations Around the World, New Maps Info in Taiwan and Finland

Watch Super Bowl 50 on Apple TV (no matter where you live)

If you’re a cord cutter like a lot of us, you might be wondering how to get Super Bowl 50 up on your big screen at home without a cable subscription. Luckily, if you live in the U.S., you’ve got it pretty easy. Even U.K. folks can stream it live (as long as they have […]

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


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Watch Super Bowl 50 on Apple TV (no matter where you live)

Apple Receives Chairman’s Award for Historic Architectural Preservation in NYC

The New York City Landmarks Conservancy today announced that Apple has won its 2016 Chairman’s Award, due to the Cupertino company’s preservation and restoration of a few architecturally important locations within New York City (via iFun.de) [Google Translate].

Apple’s retail location in Grand Central Terminal

The Landmarks Conservancy specifically referred to Apple’s SoHo, West 14th Street, Upper East Side, and Grand Central retail stores as the reason behind choosing Apple for the Chairman’s Award. Each location selected has historical significance prior to Apple’s restoration, including a former banking complex built in 1921 and an old United States Post Office.

The Chairman’s Award began in 1988 to recognize „exceptional commitment to the protection and preservation of the rich architectural heritage of New York.“ Apple will officially receive the award at the Chairman’s Luncheon on March 9.

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Apple Receives Chairman’s Award for Historic Architectural Preservation in NYC

Apple Has Secret Team Working on Virtual Reality Headset

Apple has expanded its research efforts in virtual and augmented reality, building out a large team that is experimenting with headsets and other technologies, reports Financial Times in a detailed post on the company’s virtual reality work that covers recent hires and acquisitions.

Hundreds of employees are part of a „secret research unit“ exploring AR and VR, with the team consisting of experts hired through acquisitions and poached from Microsoft and Lytro, the company that developed the Immerge, a Light Field power camera able to blend live action and computer graphics for a live action VR experience. Apple has also hired Doug Bowman, said to be one of the leading virtual reality experts in the United States.

In addition to recent AR/VR-related acquisitions Metaio, Faceshift, and Emotient, Apple has also just purchased Flyby Media, a startup that worked on augmented reality technologies. Flyby Media created an app that worked with Google’s „Project Tango“ smartphone with 3D sensors, allowing messages to be attached to real world objects that were then viewable by one of Google’s devices.

Most notably, Apple’s AR/VR team is said to have built prototype virtual reality headsets that are similar to the Oculus Rift and the Hololens from Microsoft. Multiple prototypes of „possible headset configurations“ have been created in recent months, with Apple’s interest reportedly inspired by the Oculus Rift.

It is not clear if and when Apple’s work on a headset prototype will make it past the development stage into an actual product, and the company often secretly works on technologies that never see the light of day. The scope of what Apple is building is also unknown, but Financial Times says that the company’s work could potentially be useful for the Apple Car project.

Apple has had a team working on virtual and augmented reality technologies since at least early 2015, when rumors suggested there were a small number of employees investigating how Apple could incorporate the technologies into its products. Apple’s interest in virtual reality dates back much further, however, and Apple has filed multiple patents over the years, for products like video goggles, motion-sensing 3D virtual interfaces for iOS devices, and 3D „hyper reality“ displays.

Apple CEO Tim Cook was recently questioned on whether he believed virtual reality could go mainstream. He explained that he does not see virtual reality as a niche product, describing it as „really cool“ with „some interesting applications.“

Tags: augmented reality, ft.com, Apple acquisition, virtual reality
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Apple Has Secret Team Working on Virtual Reality Headset

London Mayor Boris Johnson Asked Apple to Help Build Garden Bridge

London Mayor Boris Johnson tried to convince Apple to fund the UK capital’s project to build a „Garden Bridge“ across the River Thames, as reported by Business Insider.

The report cites an article published today in The Architects’ Journal which details how Johnson secretly travelled to California in early 2013 to meet Apple executives and pitch the ambitious project, before he had received official backing for the scheme from his office.

Proposed design for Garden Bridge over the River Thames (Image: Arup)

Apple is well known for its intense interest in architectural design and its close attention to detail when planning and building its retail stores. However, it has little history of funding projects unrelated to its technology business, making Johnson’s attempts to woo the company seem ill-judged.

In a statement given to The Architect’s Journal, the London Mayor’s office confirmed a meeting indeed took place with Apple to discuss „investment opportunities in London.“ However, Apple informed the publication that the company has „no involvement in this bridge project and is not considering getting involved.“

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London Mayor Boris Johnson Asked Apple to Help Build Garden Bridge