Apple Pay Promo Offers Discounts for SONIC, HotelTonight, and ParkWhiz

Apple today sent out emails letting customers know about the latest Apple Pay promotion, which offers discounts for SONIC, ParkWhiz, and HotelTonight.

apple pay sonic promo
From now until August 4, customers can get a free SONIC cheeseburger, 10 percent off three parking reservations with ParkWhiz, and 10 percent off hotel reservations with HotelTonight.

To get the SONIC deal, customers must be logged into their MySonic account, and the free cheeseburger will become available in a future order after any SONIC purchase. For ParkWhiz, customers will need to use the promo code APPLEPAY10 when checking out, and for HotelTonight, customers will need to use promo code APPLEPAYHT when reserving a room. For all of these deals, ‌Apple Pay‌ must be used as a payment method.

PSA: Snapchat is currently down for some users

If you’re trying to access Snapchat this Thursday night and noticed that it’s not working, it’s not just you. The social network is currently down for some users, based on reports on Twitter and also data from Down Detector.

The issues began around 3:00 PM PT and so far users are still unable to use the app. While Snapchat is partially working for some users, others say that they can’t event the social network app. Snapchat Support has just acknowledged the outage on Twitter. According to the company, there’s an issue “preventing some Snapchatters from logging in.”

Unfortunately, there’s not much you can do if you’ve been affected by today’s outage. We recommend you to wait a few hours before trying to access Snapchat again. Of course, don’t forget to follow the Snapchat Support account on Twitter to see if the outage has been fixed.

We’ll also update this article once the company confirms that all issues have been fixed.

Have you been affected by today’s Snapchat outage? Let us know in the comments section below.

Read also:

FTC: We use income earning auto affiliate links. More.

Check out 9to5Mac on YouTube for more Apple news:

This article was originally posted here

The surprising reason Apple hates iPhone rumors

The surprising reason Apple hates iPhone rumors
You probably can’t guess one of the reasons why Apple wants people to stop leaking the specifications of upcoming iPhone models.
Image: Cult of Mac

Apple hates it when people leak details about its upcoming devices. No surprise there. But an order to stop spreading rumors about unreleased iPhone models that the company reportedly sent to a Chinese citizen gives an unexpected reason.

Of course, the letter says Apple wants to surprise its customers with new products, which it can’t do if all the details have already leaked out. But that’s just part of it.

iPhone rumors hurt case makers

Apple also claims that leaked specs for iPhone cause third-party accessory makers to pre-produce cases in the wrong sizes. These companies are hoping to be able to launch cases on the same day Apple releases its next handset, so they base their designs on leaked specifications for the next model. These leaks are sometimes wrong.

Vice got a copy of Apple’s order to the unnamed Chinese citizen. It says that, because of iPhone rumors that turn out incorrect, “third-party accessory manufacturers may develop and sell mobile phone cases and other accessories that are not actually compatible with the unreleased products.”

Secrecy is in Apple’s DNA

Apple’s primary reason for trying to stomp out iPhone leaks is the one everyone probably expects. Apple wants to be able to announce its new products iself, not have the details widely reported months before the product launch.

The letter it sent to the Chinese Citizen says, “Apple has made every effort to take strict measures to maintain confidentiality for any information about Apple’s products before their official release to ensure that every time Apple releases a new product, it can surprise the public,” according to Vice. “The secret of Apple’s latest technological innovation is an important part of the company DNA.”

Possibly a letter to Kang

Vice doesn’t name the Chinese citizen who received this letter from Apple. But there’s a good chance it’s person who goes by Kang.

By one measure, Kang is the most reliable source for Apple leaks. But back in June, they said on Weibo that they’d received an letter from a law firm retained by Apple asking them to remove all information they’ve posted about unannounced Apple products.

But the letter could also have been sent to some other Chinese citizen who’d shared unconfirmed info about iPhone, iPad, etc.

This article was originally posted here

It’s not just you, Snapchat is down right now [Update]

What you need to know

  • A lot of Snapchat users are currently reporting issues with the app.
  • It is currently unknown when the issue will be fixed.

Oh, Snap. Snapchat is having some issues right now.

Update, July 29 (6:55 pm ET): Snapchat Support has acknowledged there is a login issue with the service and is working on a fix.

If you are having issues with Snapchat right now, you can relax. You definitely are not alone.

According to Down Detector, over 70,000 Snapchat users have already reported an outage with the app in the evening of Thursday, July 29 (as of the writing of this article).

It’s currently unclear if all users are experiencing the same or potentially different issues accessing or using the app. It is also unclear exactly what the issue is that is affecting so many people right now. Snapchat has also not acknowledged or provided information about a fix for the problem.

If you want to stay on top of things, keep an eye on the Snapchat Support account on Twitter as the company is normally pretty good about communicating a known issue as well as when it is fixed.

We will continue to monitor the situation and update this article once a fix is in place as well.

Update, July 29 (6:55 pm ET) — Snapchat Support has acknowledged there is a login issue with the service and is working on a fix.

The Snapchat Support Twitter account has posted an update acknowledging the login issue and says that a fix is on the way. The company did not specify exactly when the issue will be resolved.

This article was originally posted here

Apple says hardware leaks harm consumers

Apple outlined its stance on hardware leaks in a cease and desist letter addressed to a Chinese citizen in June, saying the publicization of unreleased products hurts consumers.

In the letter, penned by Apple lawyers and sent to a known Chinese leaker and seller of prototype hardware, the company argues unauthorized advertisements pertaining to rumored or unreleased products harm consumer interests by diminishing launch day surprises, reports Motherboard.

“Such situations harm the interests of consumers and Apple. Therefore, it is obvious that when the unpublished information about the design and performance of Apple’s products is kept confidential, it has actual and potential commercial value,” Apple’s letter reads, according to the report.

The tech giant takes pride in its ability to “surprise and delight,” though a deluge of leaks from factories in China have severely hampered its ability to do so over the past decade. With leakers, analysts and major media outlets eager to be the first to detail every facet of Apple’s operation, true surprises are few and far between.

“Apple has made every effort to take strict measures to maintain confidentiality for any information about Apple’s products before their official release to ensure that every time Apple releases a new product, it can surprise the public. The secret of Apple’s latest technological innovation is an important part of the company DNA,” Apple’s letter reads.

Interestingly, Apple in part defends third-party accessory makers, or at least their customers, by noting these smaller companies “may develop and sell mobile phone cases and other accessories that are not actually compatible with the unreleased products.”

It is unclear how Apple squares this logic. Many case makers seek out leaked schematics and other unofficial information to get a head start on production before a product’s debut. The practice is well known and accessories for unreleased devices often pop up online months ahead of launch, meaning accessory makers in part amplify the problem.

Apple also claims advertisements of unreleased hardware amounts to illegal disclosure of trade secrets. In this case, the Chinese leaker published “a large amount of information related to Apple’s unreleased and rumored products” to gain “widespread recognition and a large number of followers” on social media platforms.

Today’s report offers further background on a report covering the cease and desist letter first published on Wednesday.

Demand for information about iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, Mac and other Apple product lines have created a cottage industry of sorts for people who can get their hands on unreleased devices. A number of high-profile leakers obtain hardware from insiders at Apple’s Chinese plants, then publish and sell their goods online. Buyers can range from Apple fans to developers on the hunt for software vulnerabilities.

Apple began to crack down on leaks in June, when the company sent similar cease and desist letters to at least two popular online personalities. The company is also rumored to be seeding disinformation about upcoming product launches to ferret out overly forthcoming employees.

This article was originally posted here

‘Hamilton’ star Phillipa Soo signs on to costar in Apple’s ‘Shining Girls’

What you need to know

  • Phillipa Soo has signed on to the upcoming Apple TV+ series Shining Girls.
  • Soo will star alongside Elisabeth Moss, Wagner Moura, and Jamie Bell.

The cast of Shining Girls is starting to come together.

Shining Girls, the upcoming thriller series from Apple TV+, has found another cast member.

As reported by Deadline, Phillipa Soo has signed on to star alongside Elisabeth Moss in the series, Soo, who was nominated for a 2021 Primetime Emmy in the Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Limited Series Musical category for her work in Hamilton, will play “the intelligent and sure-footed Jin-Sook who works in the research department at the Adler planetarium.”

The series also stars Narcos star Wagner Moura and Jamie Bell, best known for his work in Billy Elliot.

She will star opposite Elisabeth Moss, who portrays a Chicago reporter who survived a brutal assault only to find her reality shifting as she hunts down her attacker. The star-studded cast also includes Wagner Moura (Narcos) as Dan, a veteran journalist breaking the widening story of a copycat attack. Jamie Bell also stars as Harper, a mysterious loner with a surprising connection to Kirby.

The series hails from MRC Television. In addition to starring, Moss executive produces through Love & Squalor Pictures, alongside Lindsey McManus. Leonardo DiCaprio serves as executive producer through Appian Way alongside Jennifer Davisson. Author Lauren Beukes and Alan Page Arriaga will also serve as executive producers on the project. The series will be adapted for television and executive produced by Silka Luisa, who also serves as showrunner.

It is currently unknown when filming will begin for Shining Girls or when it will make its premiere on Apple TV+. If you want to ensure you can see it in the best quality possible when it does make its debut, check out our list of the Best TVs for Apple TV 2021.

Exclusive content

Apple TV+

$5 per month at Apple

100% exclusive content for the price of a cup of coffee.

With TV+, you can watch well-produced, big-budget TV shows from famed directors, and starring award-winning actors and actresses across all your Apple devices and with up to six members of your Family Sharing group.

This article was originally posted here

Tim Cook and other CEOs pen letter to President Biden in support of DACA

What you need to know

  • Tim Cook is one of over 90 CEOs who have penned a letter to U.S. President Joe Biden.
  • The letter urges the administration to work with Congress and pass legislation that protects the program.

Almost 100 CEOs of the top American businesses are part of the letter.

Tim Cook, along with over ninety other CEOs of the biggest companies in the United States, has penned a letter to President Joe Biden over the recent ruling on DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals).

As reported by Bloomberg, the letter urges the administration to work with Congress to pass legislation that protects the program and gives those in it a pathway to citizenship.

The district court’s ruling is devastating for hundreds of thousands of Dreamers, as it found the program to be unlawful. While it allows those who currently have DACA to continue to renew their status—for now—it further throws into chaos the lives of these Dreamers and impedes their ability to legally work and contribute to our country.

We strongly urge Congress to pass legislation to provide a pathway to citizenship for Dreamers. Securing a pathway to citizenship for Dreamers not only is the right thing to do, but is a huge economic benefit to the United States.

The letter, which was also signed by Google’s Sundar Pichai, Microsoft’s Brad Smith, and Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg, points out that the policies currently set forward concerning DACA have received overwhelming support.

We urge Congress to pass legislation that creates a pathway to citizenship for Dreamers and allows them to remain in the U.S. to work, attend school, and/or serve in our military without fear of deportation. Bills like the Dream and Promise Act or DREAM Act are commonsense solutions with broad bipartisan support; the overwhelming majority of voters on both sides of the aisle agree that Dreamers should be allowed to remain in the U.S., including recent polling showing that 74% of likely voters support this legislation, including a majority of Independents, Republicans, and Democrats.

Today’s letter is not the first time that Tim Cook and Apple have fought to protect the program. Just last year, the CEO supported and lauded a Supreme Court decision to protect the program after the Trump administration had sought to have it removed.

This article was originally posted here

iPad sales continue to be hot, hot, hot

There are no iPad or iPhone purchases limits
iPad shipments last quarter are up about 50% from where they were two years ago.
Photo: Apple/Cult of Mac

iPad sales kicked onto high gear in 2020 and haven’t slowed down since. In the April-through-June quarter,
Apple shipped around 15 million tablets, roughly 50% higher than shipments in the same period two years ago.

Analysts estimates don’t agree on exactly how many units Apple moved in Q2. Canalys says the total was 14.2 million while Strategy Analytics puts the number at 15.8 million. But they agree Apple has about 35% of the global tablet market.

Both sets of analysts are working from the same basic figure: Apple revealed Tuesday that revenue from iPad was up 12% year over year in the April-through-June period.

Where the anaysts diverge is their educated guesses on what iPad models consumers are buying. Canalys apparently thinks people are getting more expensive versions — hence the lower units shipped for the same amount of revenue.

These number could have been higher. Apple is having problems getting the components it needs to make its tablets, which is why the wait for the 2021 version of the 12.9-inch iPad Pro stretched out months after the launch. And Apple says that’s going to continue.

The changing role of iPad contributes to sales

iPad sales took off in the second quarter of 2020 as COVID-19 forced people to work and study from home. To see the impact, consider that Strategy Analytics estimates that 10.7 million iPads shipped in Q2 2019, but 14.3 million in the same quarter of 2020 growing further to 15.8 million in Q2 2021. iPad revenue increased just as strongly over that period.

Apple’s tablet launched in 2010 as a consumption device — a way to surf the web or read ebooks. But the surge in sales during the pandemic shows people are using the iPad as a laptop alternative. They are obviously doing their jobs and taking classes on these computers.

That became easier when Apple added the Smart Connector to various iPad models. This port is specifically designed for external keyboards. Plus, Apple and third-party accessory makers produce a variety of add-on keyboards.

This article was originally posted here

Apple should move beyond streaming and scale up its movie business for theatrical release

Any streaming company that does not have a theatrical strategy, such as Apple, needs to get one, Steven Mallas writes for for Seeking Alpha. Apple can promote its Apple TV+ service via a multiplex slate, Mallas says, plus the company has the cash to invest billions in movies, as well as pursue significant acquisitions.

Apple TV+ is home to the biggest directors and top stars
Apple TV+ is home to the biggest directors and top stars

Steven Mallas for Seeking Alpha:

I’ve always said that companies such as Netflix, Apple, Amazon, and even Facebook, require theatrical strategies in addition to distribution of original content on digital platforms.

Apple definitely, and finally, needs to commence a theatrical strategy (a real one). It’s puzzling to me why the company hasn’t thus far.

Apple should move beyond streaming and scale up a movie-slate business for theatrical. Yes, even in this rough pandemic era. And it should consider the business a revenue stream of its own, even though it is obviously conceptually intertwined with Apple TV+.

A multiplex-focused strategy of major-studio-like, tentpole product, could easily become a thriving division of Apple. Once that is at scale, the tech giant’s streaming unit would be on the road toward paying long-promised dividends…

Apple could also get a better return on its cash (it held over $60 billion in cash/marketable securities as of Q3) by looking at acquisition candidates in the media industry. It could easily buy Lions Gate Entertainment, as a favorite example from the discussion section on some of my articles. Creating a startup studio internally and bolstering it with an acquisition would be a powerful combination…

Apple is ready for this because now that Apple TV+ is making some waves with its content (e.g., Ted Lasso, The Morning Show), it has the opportunity to build on that momentum. When Apple eventually releases a Marvel-like film that does Marvel-like numbers, it will sell Apple TV+ subscriptions, no question.

MacDailyNews Take: We continue to hear peeps that “a significant acquisition is coming; it’s not a matter of ‘if,’ but ‘when’” from a little birdie. COVID-19 may have delayed things in that area for Apple, but some media-related Apple acquisition may be coming eventually.

This article was originally posted here

‘Hamilton’ star Phillipa Soo joins cast of Apple TV+ thriller ‘Shining Girls’

Emmy Award nominee Phillipa Soo, best known for her work in “Hamilton,” will join the cast of Apple TV+ original series “Shining Girls,” according to a report on Thursday.

Soo has signed on to the Apple TV+ project to take on the role of Jin-Sook, an intelligent and sure-footed researcher at the Adler planetarium, reports Deadline.

The actor was nominated for an Emmy in the Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Limited Series Musical category in 2021 for her turn in “Hamilton” and most recently played a role in Spectrum Original series “The Bite.”

“Shining Girls” is described as a metaphysical, time travel thriller. Based on Lauren Beukes’ 2013 best-selling novel, the story revolves around a Depression-era drifter who discovers a key to a house that unlocks to different eras in Chicago’s history. In order to travel through the portal, however, he must murder women burning with potential.

Elisabeth Moss is set to star in the series as Kirby, a reporter who survived an assault in the 1980s and is now hunting down her attacker. Soo will star opposite Moss as Jin-Sook.

Apple has quickly filled out the show’s cast, with “Narcos” star Wagner Moura portraying Dan, a fellow journalist covering the copycat attacks. BAFTA Award-winner Jamie Bell (“Rocketman,” “Billy Elliot”) joined in May to play Harper, a mysterious loner with a surprising connection to Kirby.

Showrunner Silka Luisa is adapting Beukes’ novel for television and will serve as an executive producer alongside Moss and her Love & Squalor Pictures production company partner Lindsey McManus.

Apple TV+ won rights to “Shining Girls” as part of a first-look deal with Leonardo DiCaprio’s Appian Way Productions. DiCaprio will executive produce with the Jennifer Davidson.

This article was originally posted here