Tuesday December 11, 2018
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Apple in Court Battle Over App Store

If Apple fails to overturn the previous decision, the company is likely to face years of legal wrangling in a case that dates back to 2011

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Apple iPad Pro (2018): Near-laptop experience on a sturdy tab. Flickr Commons
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Apple will head to the US Supreme Court this week to block a group of customers from suing the tech giant for monopoly abuse, media has reported.

The company is battling a group of iPhone owners who claim Apple forces them to overpay for apps by forbidding rivals to the multibillion-dollar App Store.

After the customers won the right to launch a class action lawsuit against the company in 2017, Apple is now appealing to the Supreme Court to have the decision overturned, The Telegraph reported late on Saturday.

If Apple fails, the business model of the App Store, one of the company’s fastest-growing and most profitable divisions, could be threatened, it added.

Apple makes billions each year by taking a 30 per cent cut of apps sold through the App Store, which are created by developers. App revenues grew by around a third in 2017 to $38.5 billion even as sales of Apple’s iPhones and iPads stalled.

The customers argue that its sizeable commission is evidence of the company exploiting its monopoly position over iPhone users. They argue that “iPhone consumers nationwide have paid (Apple) hundreds of millions of dollars more for iPhone apps than they would have paid in a competitive market”.

Apple
An Apple store in Woodbridge, Virginia. (VOA)

Apple is seeking to dismiss the case by appealing to a Supreme Court ruling made in 1977 that said only “direct purchasers” can seek damages for antitrust abuse.

The company argues that because the app developers themselves set the price of apps in the App Store and not Apple, iPhone users are purchasing the apps from the developers directly.

Its opponents claim that because Apple sets the rules about the App Store, such as the minimum price, it is effectively selling the apps on to users.

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The Supreme Court is due to hear the arguments on Monday, although it is likely to take months until its judges announce any decision.

If Apple fails to overturn the previous decision, the company is likely to face years of legal wrangling in a case that dates back to 2011. (IANS)

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Experience The New Apple iPad Pro (2018)

Those on the iPad Pro ecosystem must go for the device as it has never-before-seen improvements, at both the hardware and the software fronts

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Apple, Iphone XR, Apple Watch
Apple iPad Pro (2018): Near-laptop experience on a sturdy tab. Flickr Commons

Three years is enough time for a flagship consumer electronics device to don a new avatar and the new Apple iPad Pro (2018) has done just that — it is far superior to the first iPad Pro that came into existence in 2015. (The first iPad arrived eight years back.)

Smartphones have begun to rival tablets today and tablets have decided to go the laptop way — at a time when fixed office spaces are shrinking and professionals and frequent travellers are looking to create, work and enjoy from anywhere, everywhere.

With the all-screen iPad Pro, Apple has introduced the future of mobile computing that has the potential to outperform a traditional PC.

The new 11-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pros are available in silver and space-grey finishes in 64GB, 256GB and 512GB configurations as well as a new 1TB option (which we reviewed).
The 12.9-inch iPad Pro starts at Rs 89,900 for the Wi-Fi model and Rs 1,03,900 for the Wi-Fi + Cellular model. It is just 5.9 mm thin — the thinnest iPad design ever.

Let us see what went into making iPad Pro so that it can take on a laptop.

Once you own an iPad Pro, invest further in buying a Smart Keyboard Folio, encompassing a full-size keyboard that never needs to be charged or paired (the space grey Folio will cost Rs 17,900).

Now is the time to get the second-generation Apple Pencil that will cost another Rs 10,900.
Once the ecosystem is complete, sit back and witness new levels of precision and productivity with the iPad Pro.

The Apple Pencil magnetically attaches to the device for pairing and wireless charging. It became even more powerful and intuitive as we began selecting tools or brushes — with just a simple double tap.
The new touch-sensor built onto the Apple Pencil detects taps, introducing a new way to interact within apps like Notes.

Representational image. Pixabay

If you are working in creative streams and love to multi-task, the Smart Keyboard Folio features a streamlined design that’s adjustable for added versatility.
The device packs creative apps from Adobe, Autodesk and Procreate (remember that Photoshop CC from Adobe is coming to iPad Pro next year).

Another noticeable thing for creative professionals is a high-performance USB-C connector that brings a whole new set of capabilities.
You can now connect iPad Pro to cameras, musical instruments, external monitors, even docks, and get data transfer done in a jiffy. This is important for creative pros whose workflows require high bandwidth.

The battery is great and gave all-day support during gaming and streaming movies.
For those familiar with iOS 12 on iPhone X and iPhone XS, the iPad Pro provides a similar experience, including tap to wake and swiping to go home, access Control Centre and for multi-tasking.
The new Shortcuts app will help you link together automated workflows for photo editing, video editing and file and asset management.
Improvements to Photo Import and support for native RAW image editing give photographers efficient ways to work on the device.
For a day-to-day user at home, iPad Pro is packed with fun features.
Group FaceTime now makes it easy to connect with groups of friends or colleagues at the same time.

Participants can be added at any time, join later if the conversation is still active and choose to join using video or audio from an iPhone, iPad or Mac.
With the new Animoji and customisable Memoji, you can take advantage of the large screen on iPad to add more personality to photos and videos in Messages and FaceTime.
iPad Pro features edge-to-edge Liquid Retina display with rounded corners. The A12X Bionic chip with next-generation Neural Engine outperforms most devices. The device offers Gigabit-class LTE and up to 1TB of storage to enable mobile workflows.

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Face ID, the most secure facial authentication system in any tablet or computer, is now available on the iPad for the first time.
A seven-core, Apple-designed GPU delivers up to twice the graphics performance for immersive AR experiences and console-quality graphics.

What does not work?
Well, there are some limitations when it comes to a true laptop experience. If Apple decides to run macOS on iPad Pro in the near future (the hardware is ready for that), it will become a perfect laptop for sure.

Conclusion: Those on the iPad Pro ecosystem must go for the device as it has never-before-seen improvements, at both the hardware and the software fronts. For working professionals, switching to the iPad Pro will take a bit training time, but the experience is simply out of the world. For the rest, it is an iPad Pro anyway! (IANS)