Apple set to buy Kinect technology for £185m

xBox Kinect

Microsoft xBox 360 – Kinect

Apple is set to drop £185m on Kinect-style technology, according to new reports.

Calcalist reports Apple is prepared to fork out $280 (£185) million for the company behind the sensor technology in the motion-detecting Kinect gaming accessory for the Microsoft Xbox 360 and forthcoming Xbox One.

Probably the most likely candidate in the Apple portfolio to be Kinect-ed up is Apple TV — or rather Apple’s long-rumoured reinvention of the humble telly. Inevitably — but problematically, at least in the UK — dubbed iTV, the hotly-anticipated Apple take on TV could be controlled by hand gestures if the buy goes ahead.

Israel-based company PrimeSense is involved in the sensor technology that powers the arm-flailing Kinect, which reads your movements and translates it into movement or control in the game you’re playing.

Microsoft was happy to license the technology from PrimeSense for Kinect, but Apple is having none of that carry-on. With a mountain of cash in the iVaults, Apple is set to fork out for the whole kit and caboodle instead.

If Apple does assimilate PrimeSense into the fruit-flavoured Cupertino collective, it’s unclear what that’ll mean for other companies licensing PrimeSense tech, such as Asus, iRobot and many more.

Source: CNET UK

Here’s How To Demo iOS 7 Free Without Downloading It To Your iPhone

Apple iOS 7

Apple iOS 7

Want to try out Apple’s iOS 7, but don’t want to hassle with the incomplete beta version? Recombu has created an interactive mock up online that lets you try out some of the signature features we saw in last week’s WWDC.

You can see everything from how the new Music app looks to what’s new on the Camera app, as well as the new settings menu that you can swipe up from the bottom of the iPhone’s screen.

Recombu offers this disclaimer about their demo:

This demo is based on the iOS 7 Beta Apple has now released and there will potentially be a few more changes and tweaks before the final revision of iOS 7 hits consumer’s devices.

Naturally, this isn’t the whole experience that iOS 7 offers – there’s only so much you can do with HTML and Javascript alone. All the wonderful animations and transitions are missing from our experience, but the roots of the redesign are all there, showing off the new range of icons as well as the core apps that have been tweaked.

We’ve even included some of the new features of iOS 7 for you to play around with. You can pull up Control Center and fiddle with some toggles, try out the new keyboard in Messages, and even take a cheeky snap of yourself using your computer’s webcam in the Camera app.

Quick reminder, though: iOS 7 isn’t anywhere near finished yet. Certain elements are no doubt going to change before the final release, and as we mentioned above, this isn’t an entirely fair representation of the full operating system. Think of this more as a fun little demo rather than a serious showcase of the OS. With that in mind, click away and enjoy.

Click here to check it out yourself! If you’d rather download iOS 7 and get the whole experience we offer UUID Registration & iOS 7 Download

Apple iMessage and FaceTime not working for some users

Apple has confirmed that its iMessage and FaceTime services are not currently working for some users. On Apple’s System Status page, both iMessage and FaceTime are listed as having issues with a note underneath each that reads “Some users affected.” All other services are up.

iPhone owners have already been aware that iMessage is down. As “iPhones” and “iMessage” have both been trending on Twitter in relation to the downtime. If you thought it was just your phone, rest assured it’s not. You will still be able to send messages to friends though, they will just send as normal text messages rather than iMessage’s, of course that means you will have to suffer with those ugly green chat bubbles temporarily.

The issues began around 3:15PM eastern time according to Apple. It’s been a little over three hours now. The actual problem itself is unidentified at this point, so there’s unfortunately no way of knowing when Apple will resolve the iMessage and FaceTime woes.

Apple has a history of having issues keeping up its services like iMessage and iCloud. This is far from the first time iMessage has been down and if I was a betting man, I’d say it probably won’t be the last.

UPDATE 1:30 AM Wednesday, April 10, 2013 (BST): It looks like iMessage and FaceTime is working again.

China unveils ‘world’s fastest smartphone’

Photograph: Josep Lago/AFP/Getty Images

Photograph: Josep Lago/AFP/Getty Images

Huawei, the Chinese telecoms equipment group, has unveiled what it claims is the world’s fastest smartphone and announced a 60% annual rise in shipments of its mobile devices.

Headlining at the mobile phone industry’s annual gathering in Barcelona, which opened its doors a day after hundreds of thousands of demonstrators rallied across Spain in protest at national austerity, Huawei presented its latest device to run on Google’s Android software.

The Ascend P2 connects to the web two or three times faster than other smartphones when using Wi-Fi, its maker claims, downloading high-definition films in minutes and videos, songs and eBooks in just seconds.

In the Christmas quarter, Huawei overtook BlackBerry to become the world’s third largest smartphone maker. Although it is some way behind Samsung and Apple, its less expensive but high-performing handsets are attracting a growing following.

It shipped a total of 127m consumer devices last year, of which 32m were smartphones alongside more basic “feature” phones, home broadband modems and dongles to connect laptops to mobile networks.

The division generated $7.5bn of revenues in 2012, a 10% increase on the previous year. Overall income including sales of network equipment to telecoms companies totalled $35.4bn, bringing Huawei level for the first time with the market leader Ericsson.

For the full story check out The Guardian

It’s here. Google Maps for iPhone

Get the new Google Maps and say hello to Google search, voice guided navigation, transit directions, Street View, and much more. The new Google Maps application for the iPhone became the most downloaded free item in Apple‘s App Store on Thursday, just hours after its launch.

The long-awaited app launched in the early hours of Thursday morning, finally bringing relief to the millions of iPhone users forced to rely on Apple’s own much-maligned mapping system.

The popularity of Google Maps provided an insight into the unpopularity of Apple’s own attempt at providing a map service. Its launch came after Apple ditched its partnership with Google ahead of the launch of iOS6, the most recently launched operating system for the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch.

Starting today, we’re pleased to announce that Google Maps is here – rolling out across the world in the Apple App Store. It’s designed from the ground up to combine the comprehensiveness and accuracy of Google Maps with an interface that makes finding what you’re looking for faster and easier.

Early reviews of Google Maps were overwhelmingly positive. The New York Times described it as “free, fast and fantastic,” concluding that “Google Maps for iPhone is an astonishingly powerful, accurate, beautiful tool“.

The Next Web said the new tool was “pleasantly responsive and feature-rich,” although noted “a few rough spots that suggest it’s been rushed ahead to market“.

The early response to Google Maps is in stark contrast for the widespread despair provoked by Apple’s own attempt at building a mapping system.

Users reported that railway stations had been imagined, the Sears Tower in Chicago had been mislabelled, Paddington Station in London had ceased to exist and searches for ‘London’ directed UK iPhone users to the Canadian London in Ontario, rather than Britain’s teeming metropolis.

Google Maps had been an inbuilt part of the iOS operating system until this year’s update. Apple decided not to renew its licence with Google, reportedly frustrated that Google had refused to allow it access to its voice-directed turn-by-turn navigation and vector graphics for mapping.

The app looks wonderful. It’s easy to navigate and has a very clean interface and it’s free on the App Store.

* You must sign-in with a Google account to bookmark places.

Requirements: Compatible with iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, iPod touch (3rd generation), iPod touch (4th generation), iPod touch (5th generation) and iPad. Requires iOS 5.1 or later. This app is optimized for iPhone 5.

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