iPhone 4S Cases Arriving at AT&T Stores Ahead of Launch

Apple is expected to announce two different iPhone models at their October 4 media event, and cases for one of those phones, the “iPhone 4S,” are already showing up at AT&T stores ahead of launch. The packaging you see here is for an OtterBox Commuter case for the rumored, but unreleased, mid-range iPhone 4S.

The leaked images are coming from iOS hacker @chronic on Twitter, who has proven to have a fairly good track record over the past few months. Will, as he is known, adds that OtterBox would not waste $800,000 on packaging for an upcoming device that they weren’t sure existed yet.

Better looks after the break. (more…)

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Apple Testing New iPad Lending Program for Employees

Apple employees will soon be able to loan an iPad, for up to one week, as part of the new iPad lending program that the Cupertino-based company is testing. The program will allow for Apple employees to freely use the iPad during their one week lending period, at no cost, and then return it for others to use.

Apple’s flagship retail store in San Francisco will be the first to initiate the “pilot” program, which may be focused on getting store employees to better understand how the iPad, a product that they sell frequently, works.

[CNET]

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Facebook f8 Developer Conference Streaming Live

Facebook’s annual f8 developer conference is about to begin, and you can view a live stream of the action online. The social network received a design overhaul earlier this week, and the company is expected to announce a music streaming service that allows users to share and listen to tracks with friends. Facebook for iPad may finally be released too, so stay tuned in at LiveStream to get the news as it happens.

  • A “Timeline” profile view has been introduced. It summarizes your Facebook-life by combining all your stories, apps, and important events into one page, which can be navigated by year. The farther back you go, the more condensed the timeline gets. Like Time Machine for social networking.
  • Integration with Netflix, Spotify, MOG, Rdio, and others for sharing videos and listening to music with friends. Once you approve an app to post in your timeline once, it will never prompt you again. Facebook calls this “Frictionless”, but it will be seen as very invasive by users who appreciate privacy.
The event is over, and there is no iPad app to be found. Maybe next year!

[f8]

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Notebook Vendors Say the iPad Lacks Any True Competition

According to DigiTimes, notebook vendors are “turning pessimistic about non-Apple tablet PCs” after witnessing other large-tier companies failing to create a true iPad competitor. One of the first to fall against the iPad was Waterloo-based Research in Motion’s BlackBerry PlayBook tablet, which had only 200,000 units shipped in the last quarter. Hewlett-Packard also felt the effects of the iPad-dominated tablet market, as they called it quits on their TouchPad tablet—and all webOS-based hardware—just one month after it hit shelves.

Notebook vendors also believe that the upcoming Android version, codenamed Ice Cream Sandwich, will not be significant enough for iPad competitors in the tablet market to make a comeback. The report suggests that it won’t be until the release of Windows 8 tablets and the next Android version, following Ice Cream Sandwich, for there to be an effective fight back against Apple.

[DigiTimes]

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Sprint to Cap Mobile Hotspot Bandwidth to 5GB

According to SprintFeed, the last carrier to allow unlimited data will move to cap tethering plans to 5GB starting October 2nd. This move likely comes in preparation for the onslaught of iPhone users, who are expected to chew through lots and lots of bytes. Sprint will continue to offer unlimited data for mobile data (but for how long?), so if you tether through shady means you may be able to skate by unnoticed. Tethering costs $30 per month and includes 3G/4G access, and overages are $.05/MB. Existing users will not be grandfathered in and will be automatically migrated to the new plan.

[SprintFeed]

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Google Brings Multiple Sign-In and More to Gmail Mobile

Google has added multiple account sign in to their mobile Gmail site. This feature has been available on the desktop for over a year now, and is helpful for users with more than one Gmail address. For ease of use, users can set separate bookmarks for each for instant access to individual accounts. On iOS devices, Mail.app supports a unified inbox, but some users prefer using the web interface. Google has also introduced a mobile-specific signature so contacts know when you are emailing via a handheld, and the ability to set a vacation auto-response.

Just like on your desktop, you can now to sign into multiple accounts simultaneously. To sign into an additional account, click on the account switcher at the bottom of the threadlist, then click ”Sign into an another account.” You can quickly switch between accounts by selecting the desired account from the Accounts menu.

[Google]

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AT&T Launching Samsung’s Galaxy S II For $199 on Oct. 2nd

It’s been in testing for the last year, but Samsung’s Galaxy S II is finally set to launch with AT&T just two days into October. The Android-based smartphone, which boasts some powerful hardware specifications, will cost $199 on contract. The ultra-slim phone, powered by a 1.2 GHz dual-core processor, has 1 GB of memory, an AMOLED display, and an 8-megapixel camera with full 1080p high-definition video recording.

The Galaxy S II’s biggest competitor will be Apple’s rumored iPhone 5. In fact, Samsung is rolling out the Galaxy S II just two days before Apple’s chief executive Tim Cook is expected to show off the latest iPhone iteration to the world. Samsung has been thinking about suing Apple over the iPhone 5 when it is released, in an attempt to have the device banned from sale across the European Union.

[Engadget]

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OS X Lion Ultimatum DreamBoard Theme is Quite Impressive

It will cost you $3.50 on Cydia, but the new OS X Lion Ultimatum theme for DreamBoard is outright awesome. This theme really emphasizes the great themes, tweaks, and other custom modifications that the jailbreak community delivers on a consistent basis. Check out the lengthy video demonstration above for the theme, which is compatible with jailbroken iPhone and iPod touch devices that have DreamBoard installed.

[9to5Mac]

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Al Gore Mentions “New iPhones” Launching Next Month

Al Gore, speaking Wednesday at the Discovery Invest Leadership Summit in South Africa, made a rather subtle comment about Apple’s plans to launch “new iPhones” next month. Gore, a former U.S. vice-president, has been a member of Apple’s board of directors since 2003. The plurality of the word iPhone is important to emphasize, as pointed out by The Next Web, since it has been widely speculated that Apple will be launching not one, but two new iPhones in a few weeks.

The two new iPhone iterations would be the highly anticipated iPhone 5, which would feature a completely new design, 8-megapixel camera, and many other new features. The second new iPhone to be released would be a mid-range iPhone “4S,” which would be less expensive, have a form factor similar to the iPhone 4, and boast minor hardware improvements.

“Not to mention the new iPhones coming out next month. That was a plug,” said Gore exactly.

[The Next Web]

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MyWi Updated with iOS 5 Support

The bane of cell networks, MyWi, has been updated with support for the upcoming release of iOS 5. MyWi allows users to turn their device into a portable WiFi hotspot and is available for jailbroken devices on Cydia for $19.99 (a free trial is also available for testing). AT&T and Verizon are both working hard to crack down on tethering loopholes, but if you’ve managed to lay low and avoid any demanding emails, you should be safe to upgrade to the next version of Apple’s mobile OS and tether your other devices without too much trouble.

[MyWi]

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