Apple is on a mission to build the thinnest iPhone yet, and the company may break the 8-millimeter mark when it launches its next iPhone later this year. Reports surfaced last week that Apple is looking to utilize a new display technology in its next iPhone that places a panel’s touch sensors inside the color filters rather than above them, allowing the panel to be thinner without sacrificing responsiveness. KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo thinks the reports are accurate according to AppleInsider, and he believes a thinner battery and a switch from glass to metal for the iPhone’s case could make the next iPhone just 7.9 millimeters thick. BGR exclusively reported late last year that Apple is working on a completely redesigned sixth-generation iPhone with a new antenna system that will launch this coming fall. More →
Google on Wednesday announced a major redesign for its Google+ social networking site that will introduce a more functional and flexible user experience. The new interface focuses on customization, Google’s Hangout video chatting service and features that will make it easier to discover new conversations and profile pages. One of the first improvements users will notice is a revamped navigation bar located on the left-hand side of the screen. The “ribbon of applications” can be dragged, dropped and placed in any order. The new interface also features a Facebook-like chat bar on the right with a “Trending” widget to help users discover popular topics on Google+, and a dedicated Hangout page will provide users with quick access to popular hangouts, tips and live broadcast. The new design is slowly rolling out and will be available over the next few days. A video highlighting the new Google+ can be found after the break. More →
Apple may be working on an overhaul of its iTunes Store and App Store, according to 9to5Mac. Due to growing competition from music streaming services like Spotify and the growing popularity of Amazon’s online music store, the redesign of the iTunes Store is considered “a top priority for Apple.” The Cupertino-based company is looking to simplify the service and deliver a more user-friendly interface than the one afforded by its current design. The redesign will reportedly simplify content discovery, and it will “make the iTunes Store a much more engaging experience.” The revamped stores are reportedly scheduled to launch later this year. More →
The United States Patent and Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple on Thursday that reveals potential next-generation battery designs. As the mobile industry turns toward thinner devices, Apple is looking to redesign batteries to enable these thin designs. According to PatentlyApple, the Cupertino-based company’s invention relates to a battery cell, which includes a set of electrode sheets of different dimensions that can be arranged in a variety of designs. The configuration can be based on a non-rectangular battery design such as an L-shaped, a triangular or a pyramidal design. Existing battery packs typically contain rectangular cells, and by utilizing cells with alternative shapes, Apple will seemingly be able to pack more cells into a smaller battery pack. More →
A leaked component that is purportedly part of Apple’s unannounced iPad 3 suggests that the tablet may feature a brand new design. The new part is a microphone mic flex cable ribbon that was leaked by TVC-Mall. Unlike the iPad 2, the flex cable in the iPad 3 makes a U-Turn, suggesting additional components have been reconfigured within the iPad 3’s case. Redesigned internal hardware don’t necessarily mean the iPad 3 will will feature a cosmetic redesign, but earlier reports claimed that Apple’s new iPad would feature a thicker case in order to accomodate a high-resolution display panel that isn’t quite as slender as the iPad 2’s panel. The latest rumors suggest Apple could unveil the tablet as soon as March or April, and it may also be working on a new smaller iPad model that will launch later in the year. More →
Twitter on Thursday announced a complete redesign of its twitter.com homepage and its iOS and Android applications. “It’s now easier and faster to see the information that matters most to you,” Twitter explained. “Immediately access your favorite features from the left-hand side. Photos, videos and conversations are embedded directly in Tweets so you can see the whole story at a glance. And now everything in Home will appear consistently across computers, iPhones, and Android mobile phones.” We found that Twitter’s homepage has been tweaked ever so slightly: information about your profile, trending topics and “who to follow” has been moved to the left side of the page and the timeline is now on the right. It’s clean, though, and easy to use as always. The iOS application seems more limited than before, and it takes more digging to get to what we want. We’re sticking with Tweetbot on iOS for now since it offers a much more robust feature set. More →
We’re live outside the Apple Store on 5th Avenue in New York City where Apple has just unveiled the redesign of its iconic glass cube. This is easily one of the most recognizable Apple retail outlets in the world, and the new design makes it infinitely more elegant. There are now fewer glass panels than before and the redesign looks terrific in the morning light. A few store employees are standing outside making sure that nobody will “get fingerprints on the glass” before the grand opening. We’ll be taking more photos once the store opens but in the meantime, check out our images of Apple’s new 5th Avenue store in the gallery below.
UPDATE: The doors are now open and we’ve added almost 30 new images to the gallery, including several of the redesigned interior of the store.
Rumors that Apple plans to release an updated iPhone 4 model — referred to on tech blogs as the “iPhone 4S” — alongside the iPhone 5 this fall gained momentum on Thursday evening as images of purported iPhone 4S parts were published by MacRumors.com. The site says it received parts belonging to the iPhone 4S case from supplier iPatchiPods.com, an online iPhone and iPod repair shop. If these components are believed to be authentic, it appears as though the iPhone 4S will feature a redesigned antenna that may help alleviate attenuation resulting from the notorious “death grip.” In addition, MacPost published an image of what is purported to be the rear back from Apple’s upcoming iPhone 5. The redesigned white case back is said to be from a prototype device and it bears the model number “N94,” which we reported belongs to a forthcoming iPhone. MacPost also published several images of various supposed iPhone 5 parts we’ve already seen in the past. The image of the iPhone 5 rear cover and another image of the iPhone 4S antenna assembly follow below. More →
Several alleged internal components from Apple’s upcoming iPhone 5 have surfaced on websites belonging to two different online parts suppliers. As reported by MacPost, purported OEM camera lens replacement modules, OEM headphone jacks and other parts now appear on websites belonging to Chinese parts suppliers TVC-Mall and Truesupplier, further suggesting that a launch of Apple’s fifth-generation iPhone is not far off. Genuine iPhone parts have historically appeared on websites belonging to Chinese parts suppliers ahead of launch, and while not much can be gleaned from examining the parts, their emergence follows a pattern that has historically lead to a new device launch. More images of alleged iPhone 5 parts follow below. More →
Following our exclusive report from Thursday suggesting Apple plans to release iTunes 11 in September alongside the iOS 5 and iCloud, a new report claims iTunes 11 will feature a redesigned layout and deep iCloud integration. IDownloadBlog on Friday cites a reliable source in stating that the next major release of iTunes will be “revamped from the ground up.” The report claims Apple’s new version of iTunes will feature a brand new user interface as well as iCloud integration. Mobile device app data and backups will also reportedly be integrated with iTunes 11, effectively mirroring iOS device backups and app data/settings that are automatically synced to iCloud. Apple has made major investments in its iCloud service, including the billion-dollar data center it built in North Carolina, so it would certainly be a logical move to showcase the service right out of the gate when it launches this fall. More →
The Wall Street Journal is singing a new tune Wednesday morning, reaffirming parts of an earlier BGR report suggesting that Apple is preparing to release a redesigned iPhone 5 later this year. Citing anonymous sources in Apple’s supply chain, the paper reports this morning that Apple has placed component orders with key suppliers for fifth-generation iPhone parts. As has already been widely reported, Apple’s next iPhone is said to feature an 8-megapixel camera and Qualcomm radios. The report veers away from the consensus in suggesting that Apple’s next iPhone will not share its design with the current iPhone 4, however, and will instead be thinner and lighter than the current model. BGR reported last month that Apple’s next iPhone would feature a “radical new case design” when it launches later this year. Apple reportedly plans to have 25 million next-generation iPhone handsets built in 2011, suggesting the Cupertino-based tech giant might finally come closer to meeting demand. Apple sold a record 18.65 million combined iPhone 4 and iPhone 3GS units in its last fiscal quarter.
While Apple has indeed been giving some developers access to a device known as the iPhone 4S — an iPhone 4 with upgraded internals — BGR has independently confirmed that the next-generation iPhone will not merely be an upgraded iPhone 4 as had been previously rumored. We have been told by a reliable source to expect a radical new case design for the upcoming iPhone, though we have not been given any additional details surrounding the design of the new iPhone case. What about a release, then? The consensus is that Apple is going to announce the next-generation iPhone at the company’s annual September event, traditionally focused on iPods, but we have heard it’s quite possible Apple will break tradition. According to our source, Apple may hold an event in the beginning or middle of August to announce the new iPhone, with availability to follow in the last week of August. We’re not sure if that means the iPod event will be moved up slightly, or if this will be an iPhone-specific event. Thisismynext reported earlier that the upcoming iPhone 5 would feature a new teardrop-shaped case design.
We all knew something was up, and over the weekend Apple took the wraps off what is being called “Apple Store 2.0,” a revamp that includes various new niceties. The changes, which coincided with Apple’s 10th retail anniversary, involve both consumer facing changes and behind-the-scenes tweaks that will combine to improve an already unique retail experience. Most notably, perhaps, are the thousands of iPad 2 units that have replaced paper signs and info cards next to Apple’s demo devices spread throughout the stores. Each iPad is interactive and features info about the product it accompanies, and there is also a “Specialist” button that will allow perusers to call a sales rep over for help or to make a purchase. These new iPad 2 displays won’t perform any other function — at least, not that the typical shopper can access — and they’re encased in acrylic enclosures to prevent people from walking off with them. Hit the break for a video of the new setup in action. More →