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Bryan M. Wolfe
| September 4, 2011
Top AppAdvice News And Apps Of The Past Week
Remember the big AT&T/T-Mobile merger? Well, it looks like it might not happen. And neither are $180 iPads (at least now). These and other topics made news in the week that was. Industry News AT&T/T-Mobile Acquisition Hits Snag With Department Of Justice The merger of AT&T and T-Mobile ran into a snag today when the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) claimed it would violate U.S. antitrust laws. The DOJ believes it will harm the competitiveness of the wireless industry. The $39 billion acquisition was on track to be finalized in early 2012 so this decision came as a shock to AT&T. They said they were “surprised and disappointed” by the filing. Sprint Nextel Corp. has lobbied against this merger for months, stating it will harm consumers through higher prices and lower device options. Sprint asked the government to block the deal back in March, and filed a formal petition with the FCC in May. iTunes Match: What You Need To Know Hours after Apple released its iTunes Match service to developers, we’ve learned more about it, both the good and the bad. For a review, iTunes Match is a service that will be made available to all iTunes users beginning with the release of iOS 5 sometime this fall. It allows users, for $24.99 per year, to sync all of their iTunes music with Apple’s new iCloud service. The service lets you store you entire music collection, including music you’ve ripped from CDs or purchased somewhere other than iTunes. It works by determining which songs in your collection are available in the iTunes Store. Any music with a match is automatically added to your iCloud music library for you to listen to anytime, on any device, while the rest is automatically uploaded. Then, all songs that match play back at 256-kbps iTunes Plus quality – even if your original copy was of lower copy. Apple Releases iOS 5 Beta 7 To Registered Developers Apple today released the seventh beta iteration of iOS 5 to registered developers of the iOS program. As usual, this new version is available to all developers running the iOS 5 beta 5 or 6 over-the-air as a delta update, and you should be prompted automatically to install it any time now. Otherwise, make sure to plug your iDevice to a power source and connect to Wi-Fi before prompting a manual update in the settings app. Woman Gets The Deal Of A Lifetime On A Fake iPad Some people are so desperate for a great deal on an iPad that they may do some crazy things. Meet Ashley McDowell, a 22-year-old from South Carolina who was at a McDonalds and found the deal of a lifetime. A couple of men approached her in the parking lot stating they were selling iPads for $300. When she told them she only had $180, they agreed to the price and she happily walked to her car after being handed a FedEx box, which contained the new iPad. After arriving home, Ashley immediately opened her box. To her surprise, she found a piece of wood that had a screenshot of the iPad along with a Best Buy sales tag and an Apple logo cutout on the back. Watch Out Apple, Amazon Tablet Is "Going To Be A Big Deal" Fifteen months after its debut, the iPad’s dominance of the tablet market has never been tested, despite a steady onslaught of would-be competitors. That could soon change with the arrival of the Amazon Tablet. This assessment isn’t ours, but rather that of TechCrunch’s MG Siegler. He made this assessment after testing the device, which is expected to arrive in the U.S. this November. Siegler contends he was given access to the 7-inch colored device under the condition that he could not take any pictures of it. His overall assessment is that “it’s going to be a big deal. Huge, potentially.” The Story On The Missing iPhone 5 Getting Stranger By The Hour [Another Update] The story about the missing iPhone 5 keeps getting stranger. Just hours after SFWeekly claimed CNET’s original story was false or at least suspect, a follow-up report has been filed that changes the story (again) completely. App News TomTom Driving Apps Going Universal This Fall TomTom has announced that its popular line of iPhone apps will soon be optimized to work on the iPad as well. This news was announced during IFA 2011 in Berlin and reported first by Engadget. Currently available in numerous versions according to location, each TomTom app was last updated in June. The iPad upgrade, which will make each app universal, will include enhanced screen resolution, sharpened graphics, and intuitive control specifically developed for the tablet. The upgrades will be available to existing customers for free. Ralph Lauren's Ad Buy Means Some Sections Of NYTimes iPad App Are Free This Month September means cooler temperatures and the arrival of fall in New York City. As such, Polo Ralph Lauren is providing solo sponsorship of The New York Times iPad app for the entire month. In the process, non-subscribers get free access to five sections of the publication all month long, according to Advertising Age. Polo’s month-long buy is the first time a single marketer has made such a purchase. Typically, six advertisers are used throughout a month. As part of the buy, the iPad app will offer live video of Polo’s Fashion Week runway show on Sept. 15. In addition, The Times’ paywall will come down for its Fashion & Style, Travel, Home & Garden, T Magazine and Sports Sections. The Financial Times Apps Are No More Over two months after it decided to forgo Apple’s iTunes subscription plan, The Financial Times’ iPhone/iPod touch and iPad apps are no longer available in the App Store. Apple pulled them today, according to ipodnn. In June, we announced that the UK-based Times decided to implement its own HTML5-based web app, instead of giving into Apple’s demands for a 30 percent cut of its App Store revenues. Strangely, it took over 60 days before the apps were eliminated for sale in the App Store. Just Announced: CNN Buys Zite CNN has just announced its planned acquisition of the Zite Personalized Magazine for iPad. The official announcement came at 10:30 a.m. PDT. First leaked days ago, the CNN/Zite deal means one of AppAdvice’s favorite news apps is going corporate. Launched in March by Vancouver, Canada-based Worio, Zite is a free personalized news service that keeps track of a user’s reading patterns. Then, an algorithm formulates future news stories based on these patterns.