Apple

Apple is replacing its black pistol emoji with a green water gun icon. It's one of more than a hundred new and redesigned emojis that will be available on iPhones and iPads this fall, when the company releases its latest operating system.

Apple Inc. is investing $1 billion in Didi Chuxing, China's most popular ride-hailing app.

It's a striking foray into the Chinese market — where Apple has recently faced strategic challenges — and a possible hint as to Apple's continued interest in the world of transportation. The company has widely been rumored to be working on self-driving cars.

It only opened around six months ago — and now comes word that Apple's iTunes Movies store in China is closed at least temporarily, along with its iBooks Store. The company has issued a statement saying that it hopes to reopen the movie and book services soon.

The closure was reportedly ordered by the Chinese government last week; according to local media, it comes just as a controversial Hong Kong film that's been censored in China is being released on Apple's Hong Kong iTunes service.

The Supreme Court agreed Monday to hear Samsung's appeal of a Federal Circuit Court ruling in the company's patent infringement dispute with Apple.

At issue in the case: What portion of the profits is a design-patent infringer liable to pay?

Apple accuses the South Korean tech giant of copying patented aspects of the iPhone's design, such as the round-cornered front face and the colorful icon grid.

A magistrate judge in the U.S. District Court in New York has handed Apple a legal victory in a Brooklyn drug case where federal investigators asked for help getting into a locked iPhone.

While the dispute over cracking into an iPhone used by the San Bernardino shooter is at the center of a legal case between Apple and the FBI, the company recently told a federal court that it has received — and resisted — similar orders to help unlock iPhones and an iPad in recent months.

John Brennan is walking with a limp these days — a testament to the hazards of shoveling your own driveway. Even the director of the CIA had to dig out just like the rest of us, after last month's blizzard shut down Washington, D.C.

But this past weekend, once he settled into a leather armchair at the head of the table where he holds daily staff meetings, Brennan held forth on subjects ranging from Syria to cybersecurity to the state of ISIS. NPR interviewed Brennan on Saturday at CIA headquarters in Langley, Va.

Here are some of the highlights:

Apple should comply with the FBI's request to extract data from an iPhone as part of a terrorism case, Microsoft founder Bill Gates says, staking out a position that's markedly different from many of his peers in the tech industry, including Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg.

The two titans aired their views on what's become a public debate over whether Apple should be compelled to unlock an iPhone used by San Bernardino shooter Syed Rizwan Farook.

The debate over whether Apple should defeat the security on the iPhone of San Bernardino shooter Syed Rizwan Farook isn't the first time the company has clashed with law enforcement.

The FBI also wanted to get into the iPhone of a drug dealer in Brooklyn. Jun Feng pleaded guilty to selling methamphetamine last year. As part of its investigation, the government obtained a search warrant for Feng's iPhone. But the phone was locked by a passcode, so prosecutors asked a judge for an order compelling Apple to bypass it.

Apple shareholders will be voting on a proposal at the annual meeting Feb. 26. It's a proposal that the company opposes, which calls for the tech leader to increase diversity in its senior management.

When a federal judge ordered Apple earlier this week to unlock a phone used by one of the assailants in a mass shooting in San Bernardino, Calif., she cited a law from 1789. It could make you wonder if the nation's legal system is having a hard time keeping up with the fast pace of technological change. So, I asked a few legal experts if our old laws can apply to this particular situation.

It's hard to overstate the tech world's fascination with the legal standoff between the FBI and Apple. Laymen might look at the dispute and shrug; after all, the FBI is just asking Apple to help hack into one phone, and it's not unusual for tech companies to help the police.

In a few days, Apple will formulate its formal response to the federal judge's order seeking the company's help for the FBI to get inside a phone used by Syed Farook, one of the attackers in the San Bernardino, Calif., shootings.

Remember the cryptex, the little handheld safe from The Da Vinci Code where entering the correct combination will reveal the secret message and entering the wrong one will destroy it?

Now replace the little safe with an iPhone, and instead of a secret message, it's holding evidence in a terrorism case. The critical combination? It's a passcode — one the FBI doesn't know, and one that Apple is reluctant to help the agency figure out.

Tim RT / flickr.com

The holiday season will be great for pads and tablets, but not so great for smartphones, says Strategic News Service publisher Mark Anderson.

Johnny Grim / flickr.com

For years, Strategic News Service (SNS) publisher and KPLU technology commentator Mark Anderson has been warning of the dangers of intellectual property theft.

Initially, Mark focused on how IP theft is affecting the technology sector. But now, he sees it wreaking havoc throughout the entire economy.

His recent SNS article, "The Big Shift," which has also been posted at Forbes, explains how "we're moving from an era where inventions paid off to an era when copying and theft makes more money."

Ashley Gross / KPLU

Amazon has released an app that makes it easier for the blind to read Kindle electronic books on iPhones. Advocates for blind people say it’s a significant step for a company that’s lagged other technology companies in making accessible products.

Dave Meyer

Will we ever see a day when personal computers are no longer made in the United States?

It may seem unthinkable in the land that gave birth to Apple, Dell, Hewlett-Packard and IBM, but Strategic News Service publisher Mark Anderson is seeing cause for alarm. He explains the situation to KPLU’s Dave Meyer on this month’s edition of The Digital Future.

The CBI

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer stood in front of shareholders today telling them what a tremendous year it’s been. But they wanted to know, why should we own the stock?

In less than a month, two instrumental figures at two of the world's biggest tech companies have left their positions. Now industry watchers wonder whether the departures at Microsoft and Apple will mean dramatic changes of direction for the tech giants.

Joseandrés Guijarro / flickr.com

According to recent headlines, PC sales are sluggish.

But, if you include tablets and smartphones along with desktops and laptops, computer sales are exploding!

In this month's edition of The Digital Future, Strategic News Service publisher Mark Anderson tells KPLU's Dave Meyer that computing is evolving into two main areas: production and consumption. And you need to count both sides of the equation when looking at computer sales.

The Associated Press

SAN FRANCISCO – Not ready for a new iPhone? Don't worry. Many software features are coming to older iPhones as well.

Apple has said that its iOS 6 software will sport more than 200 new features, though some won't be available on all devices. The new features include an updated mapping service and better integration with Facebook.

Neerav Bhatt

There’s been growing speculation lately that Amazon has a smartphone in the works. But why?

It’s a crowded market out there in smartphone land. There’s a whole bunch of phones based on Google’s Android software, there’s the Microsoft Windows phone, and of course, Apple’s iPhone.

Also, a small sampling of people on a downtown Seattle street didn't show a whole lot of interest in an Amazon phone.

Chad Anderson (eyeidea) / flickr.com

When Steve Jobs went on his third and final medical leave at the beginning of 2011, Strategic News Service publisher Mark Anderson advised his subscribers to get ready to sell their Apple stock.

Recently, Mark took his own advice and sold 75% of his Apple holdings. He explains why on this month's edition of The Digital Future.

SAN FRANCISCO — Fresh off a disappointing initial public offering, Facebook is getting a big boost from Apple, which is building the social network deep into its iPhone and iPad software.

Apple Inc. and other publishers have conspired to limit competition and fix the prices of e-books, the U.S. Justice Department alleges in a suit filed today.

According to The Wall Street Journal:

The Associated Press

SAN FRANCISCO — Apple is revealing a new iPad model. New features include a sharper screen and a faster processor.

It will go on sale March 16.

Apple Unveils New iPad, Apple TV

Mar 7, 2012

As has been the case with all of Apple's product unveilings, there is a shroud of secrecy surrounding today's impending announcement.

Today, Apple has invited media to the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco for a 1 p.m. ET. event. The only clue provided by Apple was a typically cryptic invitation with a picture of an iPad and a few words: "We have something you really have to see. And touch."

In an effort to protest the working conditions in the Chinese factories that make Apple products, demonstrators delivered a petition to six different Apple stores in four different countries.

The petition, which asks the country to make "ethical" products, included about 250,000 signatures. Organizers said they were delivering them to Apple stores in Bangalore, London, Washington, D.C., San Francisco, Sydney and New York City.

Apple has been taking a lot of heat lately for working conditions at plants making its products in China.

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