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Tempest in a teapot: The iPhone 5se pre-fail

MacWorld - 43 min 31 sec ago

It must be hard to be Apple and to know that no matter what you do, someone will find a way to criticize it.

The Macalope imagines all the money probably makes up for it, though.

InvestorPlace has the scoop on “The iPhone 5se: Everything That’s Wrong With Apple Inc.” (Tip o’ the antlers to Matthew Faltz.)

Everything? Even the things that contradict the other things?

Really, Tim Cook? Really?

Welcome to another episode of Great Ledes In History.

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Russia's new Internet czar vows to make Apple & Google pay more taxes

AppleInsider - 1 hour 30 min ago
In an effort to bolster local competitors, Russia's new Internet adviser to president Vladimir Putin plans to raise taxes on American companies, singling out Apple, Google and Microsoft as targets.

Eli Lilly and Company buys 15,000 iPads for its workers

AppleWorld.Today - 2 hours 6 min ago

Eli Lilly and Co. is participating in a “secretive program” with tech giant Apple to make the iPad more business-friendly and has bought 15,000 tablets for its workers, according to USA Today.

The Indianapolis drugmaker has bought iPads for 15,000 field workers and is upgrading its U.S. workforce to the iPad Pro. In a statement to USA Today, Lilly confirmed it has bought iPads for all sales representatives, district sales managers, account managers and "certain medical liaison roles" who work outside the company's Indianapolis headquarters. 

"Several years ago Lilly made the decision to equip all field-based employees with iPads and eliminate laptop computers for non-management sales employees," Lilly spokesman Mark Taylor said. "The goals were three-fold: enhance interactions with health care providers, improve sales representative productivity and reduce costs."

Analyst: An Apple VR/AR ‘ecosystem’ for iOS devices could debut by 2018

AppleWorld.Today - 2 hours 14 min ago

In a note to clients — as reported by AppleInsider — Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster thinks a virtual reality/augmented reality (VR/AR) “ecosystem” for iOS devices such as the iPhone could be ready to go by 2018. 

"We believe 10 years from now Generation Z will find reality inefficient," he writes. "We believe the concept of an 'inefficient reality' is evident through smartphone use today — the precursor to mixed reality — offering users the ability to find more information as needed.”

Munster says a search on LinkedIn revealed at least 141 Apple employees with a background in AR. He adds that there’s evidence that Apple is conducting AR/VR systems research behind closed doors, including numerous filed and granted patents covering virtual displays, augmented reality and computer vision.

Last year Apple was granted a patent for VR goggles that would use an iPhone as the display unit. The invention is for a "head-mounted display apparatus for retaining a portable electronic device with display." It would allow you to connect an iPhone to a GoPro-ish head mount for viewing media on a private display. The invention would allow users to couple and decouple a portable electronic device with a separate head-mounted device. 

Another patent filing indicates that Apple has considered a 3D imaging and display system that would work with Macsand iOS devices, and which would scan and display simultaneously. Yet another patent filing describes a device for “projecting a source image in a head-mounted display apparatus for a user” to deliver “an enhanced viewing experience.

What’s more, Apple has been scooping up VR/AR related companies, such as Emollient, a startup that uses artificial-intelligence technology to read people’s emotions by analyzing facial expressions. In November 2015 the company acquired Faceshift, which makes a facial motion capture system. 

In May 2015 Apple purchased Metaio, a company makes Metaio Creator, an AR authoring tool. In 2013, Apple bought PrimeSense, an Israeli maker of chips that enable three-dimensional (3D) machine vision.

These steps are expected to be the first in a path toward phasing out iPhone in favor of a mixed reality headset or similar device though that won’t happen for at least 15 years, Munster says.

JAMF CEO: the strategic use of the iPad is increasing

AppleWorld.Today - 2 hours 43 min ago

While tablet sales declined this past quarter, the strategic use case for the iPad is increasing, according to Dean Hager, CEO of JAMF Software, a company focused exclusively on managing, securing and deploying Apple devices. 

He says that the iPad is no longer just for the technology enthusiast; it’s being leveraged with iOS apps to transform business processes and transactions. This trend is reinforced and supported by the IBM MobileFirst Platform and Apple Mobility Partner Program in business and now iOS 9.3 in education, he adds.

Apple World Today recently interviewed Hager about the iPad’s strategic use case.

AWT: How do you see the iPad Pro affecting the strategic use case for the Apple tablet?

Hager: Usage for the iPad is in the middle of transformation, with or without the introduction of the iPad Pro. Historically, iPads have been used by business professionals for communication, note-taking, entertainment, and niche use-cases. Within specific industries, iPads have been used as customer kiosks or to browse brochures and documents. 

However, in the past year or two, more industry-specific applications have been introduced, transforming business operations at a fundamental level. Retailers, for example, use iPads to get out from behind the counter and move the point of sale to where the merchandise and customers are at. Doctors are using iPads to interact with and treat patients. Insurance agents have apps to enable them to work onsite where their customers are. Industry-specific applications for the iPad are proving to be the perfect solution to intersect business and customers. In 2016 and beyond, this trend will accelerate with initiatives like IBM’s MobileFirst and Apple’s Mobility Partner Program (MPP).

The introduction of the iPad Pro, with it’s larger screen, split-view capability, stylus pencil, smart keyboard, multi-touch technology, and a high-performance processor will address industry-specific use cases beyond what smaller iPads can address. It won’t replace other iPads. Rather, Apple is now delivering a broader range of sizes in order to address a broader range of industry use cases. 

Plus, it is worth noting that Apple is the first company to get the stylus (aka Pencil) right. Annotating and editing a document with the Apple Pencil is nearly akin to interacting with paper, which will enable even more business use cases. Most professional people should be able to transform how they work today with the iPad Pro. And, as one would expect, creative use cases such as video and photo editing, music creation, and graphic design is where the iPad Pro really shines. 

And finally, and perhaps most significantly, the iPad Pro is the first tablet that really has a chance to be a legitimate Windows PC replacement device.

AWT: Reviews for the iPad Pro have been divided to say the least. Do you see the super-sized iPad as a laptop replacement or as another, separate type of business tool?

Hager: The decline of the PC is well-documented. Mobile is emerging, and Microsoft does not have a strong position in mobility. PCs have increasingly been replaced by Apple MacBooks because employees want to use what they're already familiar with at home and in school. The result has been improved productivity, creativity, and self-sufficiency in the workplace. 

Up until now, the MacBook has been considered Apple’s only legitimate laptop replacement device at work. Very few of us have gone all-iPad all-the-time. However, with the substantial improvement in Microsoft applications running on the iPad, and the size, speed, keyboard, and multi-processing capabilities of the iPad Pro, most business professionals now have all the capability they need to perform in their daily jobs. 

In fact, I see the iPad Pro as a device designed specifically to replace laptops, not other tablets. When I walk around the office, or lie in bed at night reading, I want my Mini. However, at my desk, I want my Pro. With the iPad Pro, Apple has introduced the potential of users owning two iPads for different purposes, similar to how people own a laptop and tablet today. In other words, with the Pro, it’s possible for workers to go all-iPad all-the-time. 

All of this means that Apple now offers two legitimate choices for employees to replace their Microsoft PC: the Mac and iPad. And by letting the users choose, businesses can reduce training, lower help-desk calls, and empower users to be more productive at work while improving their job satisfaction. 

AWT: How do you see the upcoming iOS 9.3 affecting iPad sales in schools?

Hager: The personalized learning movement is transforming schools at every level. Properly implemented, technology can be used to address students’ specific learning needs with a personal experience as never before. And, as with all great transformations, the debate over which technology is best is practically a religious argument.

On one hand is Apple, the clear student choice. Apple is cool. It’s what students use at home, and what they will likely use in their future profession. Plus, Apple’s iOS learning content and applications are second to none. On the other hand is Google, with the Chromebook, which offers a cheaper price and perceived greater control for educators. But, less learning content exists, students reject them, and student data privacy is often perceived as an issue. This technology debate pits student versus educator.

With iOS 9.3, Apple takes an enormous leap to win over school administrators and teachers. Apple’s school management makes iPads easier to deploy and manage; the Classroom application gives teachers simple-to-use control of their classroom; and Shared iPad support allows schools to deploy a personal experience for each student, without the cost of buying an iPad for every student.

Many in education have been waiting for Apple to step up with this functionality. It may be later than they wanted, but it’s finally here. Schools can now provide students what they want, the best learning environment, and the privacy they have the right to, while satisfying the economic and administrative needs of the school.

(JAMF is a global company with offices in Minneapolis, Wisconsin, Silicon Valley, New York, Sydney, Amsterdam, Hong Kong and Poland. More than 6,000 global customers, including several of the Fortune 100, rely on the company to manage more than 5.5 million devices. The JAMF Nation community is the world’s largest Apple IT community, with more than 27,000 members.)

Withings' connected health app gets better at monitoring your blood pressure

MacWorld - 2 hours 43 min ago

February is American Heart Month, so there’s no better time to make sure you’re doing great when it comes to overall cardiovascular health.

Maker of connected health devices, Withings, has just released Hy-Result, a paid upgrade to its Health Mate iOS app that delivers advanced blood pressure monitoring. Using any in-home blood pressure monitor, Hy-Result takes six daily readings over the course of five days to create a more comprehensive view of your cardiovascular health.

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iCloud Photo Library requires copying images to the Photos for OS X app

MacWorld - 2 hours 43 min ago

Rohone D’Souza asks:

Is it possible to use iCloud Photo Library without actually copying all the photos into Photos (like iTunes lets you use it as an indexer without storing the files in its own central location)?

Unfortunately, no! Photos for OS X does let you reference files without making a duplicate copy in the currently selected Photos library.

  1. Select Photos > Preferences.
  2. Uncheck Copy Items to the Photos Library.

Referenced images can have an icon displayed that indicates their status.

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Dashy Crashy is a fun and flashy iOS game, but will it last?

MacWorld - 3 hours 5 min ago

Free-to-play games often look appealing, but it’s difficult to know at a glance whether the business model is insidious and fun ruining, or reasonable and worth pumping a few bucks into. With Freemium Field Test, we’ll take a recent free-to-play iOS game, put it through its paces, and let you know if it’s really worth your time (and money).

It’s always a nice change of pace to dig into a free-to-play that doesn’t seem like its original spark of existence was, “You know, we could make a lot of money if [game idea here].” After playing Candy Crush Jelly Saga and Katy Perry Pop for the last two of these columns, I hoped to end up with something fun and fresh, and not hopelessly vapid or purposefully misbalanced. 

To read this article in full or to leave a comment, please click here

Revisiting Software Dispatch, 1994's Mac App Store on CD-ROM

MacWorld - 3 hours 10 min ago

If you want to buy an app for your Mac today, you can just go to the App Store, click a button and—pausing only to reflect that developers are increasingly abandoning it—within seconds it’s there, on your Mac, ready to be used.

Back in the day, though, you either had to trawl through catalogs or, if you were very lucky, get in your car and drive to a store that stocked Mac-compatible software. Or, in the brave new world of 1994, you could slip the above CD-ROM into your Mac—so long as it ran System 7 and had at least 4MB of RAM—and shop from the comfort of your chair. Or hell, if you had a mobile phone and a PowerBook, you could shop from the discomfort of a mountaintop, in a blizzard, in your underwear. It’s the future.

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USB-C to HDMI adapter a handy accessory for the 12-inch MacBook

AppleWorld.Today - 3 hours 13 min ago

StarTech has expanded its line of adapters with the  USB-C to HDMI Adapter, which is very convenient for owners of 12-inch MacBooks (like me) who wish to connect the laptop to big screen TVs, HDMI monitors, or projectors on occasion. 

The MacBook only has one USB-C connector. While this may be forward-looking on Apple’s part, it also limits the notebook’s connectivity. This is where the StarTech USB-C to HDMI Adapter comes in handy. And it’s compatible with Thunderbolt 3 and USB-C devices that pass a DisplayPort video signal. 

The $39.99 adapter is small and compact so is easy to stash in a carry case or overnight bag for use on the road. It offers easy connectivity since USB-C connectors are reversible. And the StarTech adapter supports Ultra HD video resolutions so provides a bit of future proofing.

ChronoSync simplifies the process of syncing between Mac

AppleWorld.Today - 3 hours 43 min ago

If you have multiple Macs -- as many of us do -- you should certainly look into ChronoSync. The US$49.95 utility offers a way to synchronize or backup files and folders. You can synchronize between folders on your Mac, other Macs, PCs, external drives or anything you can mount on your Mac.

Let me admit that I mainly use ChronoSync for synching, as I have Time Machine and a Time Capsule that I use for my back-ups. What I really like about the software is its "intelligent" synchronization. It identifies and copies only the files that have changed since you last synchronized.

The most common need for synchronization is to simply maintain a redundant backup of your data. In this case, all the changes made in one target, the main target, will get copied over to another target, the backup target. You may never directly access the files on the backup target; they're there as a backup in case something goes wrong.

In this scenario, ChronoSync would be configured to perform a backup, blind backup or bootable backup synchronization. It does this well, but, as I mentioned, I use other products mainly for this (though you can certainly use ChronoSync along with Time Machine for double insurance).

Another common need for synchronization is to keep two sets of files that are actively modified in sync with each other -- which is how I use ChronoSync. My main computer is my 27-inch iMac. However, I also have a 12-inch MacBook I use the Econ software to perform a bidirectional synchronization between the two.

However, you can use ChronoSync as it best suits your needs. It uses a document based interface, which means that all your configuration settings as well as specific information about the set of files being synchronized are contained in a single document. This document may be saved anywhere on your computer's hard disk. Likewise, a ChronoSync document can be opened at a later date by simply double-clicking it from the Finder. This differs from an application-based interface where only a single set of data and options are presented.

ChronoSync lets you create two types of documents: synchronizers and containers. A Synchronizer document contains all the information necessary to synchronize two targets. A Container document contains one or more Synchronizer documents.

A ChronoSync Synchronizer document contains all of the information necessary to keep two targets synchronized with each other. This includes a reference to each target, the type of synchronization to be performed, numerous option settings to control ChronoSync's behavior and zero or more rules to inform ChronoSync of what type of files need to be synchronized.

A Synchronizer document also contains a snapshot of every file being synchronized in each target. This snapshot is referred to as the synchronization tree because it maintains the same hierarchical relationships of files and folders as they exist in your targets.

A Container document contains one or more Synchronizer documents that have been previously saved. So you can synchronize several Synchronizer documents in one step. You simply drag documents in and out (or click the Add or Remove toolbar icons) in the Documents panel.

Running a synchronization on a container will execute each contained Synchronizer document in the listed order. Synchronizer documents in a container can be rearranged by dragging them, affecting the order in which they run. In most other aspects, Container documents behave just like Synchronizer documents.

The synchronization operation is specified on a Synchronizer document's Setup panel. ChronoSync offers nine synchronization operations. These operations have five variants, Backup, Blind Backup, Mirror, Bidirectional and Bootable.

When it comes to, for example, synching a desktop and laptop, the first step to setting up a Synchronizer document is to decide which computer will be responsible for the synchronization.

Econ recommends that the "responsible" computer be the one that connects to the other. In my case, that means the "responsible" computer is my iMac, and the "target" computer is my MacBook.

One misconception that many users have is that they have to install ChronoSync on both computers and set up a synchronization document on both computers to perform a sync from one computer to another. Doing this isn't necessary; in fact, Econ doesn't even recommend it. Since ChronoSync has the ability to do bidirectional syncs, one document can analyze the contents of the files for both computers, synchronizing in either direction when necessary. Because of this, ChronoSync needs to be installed on only one computer.

If you are going to backup or synchronize to another computer you need to connect to it. There are two basic ways to connect to another computer: Network or Direct.

The Direct method is simpler and faster as you can connect two Macs via a physical connection. I can't do that with my 12-inch MacBook Air (yet), so I must connect to shared computers and servers using a network address.

That may sound complicated, but it's really not, though you'll have to spend some time learning all the ins and outs. Basically, here's how it works: you set up a Synchronizer document to schedule and automatically mount volumes so your syncs and backups go smoothly. Archive your data and "go back in time" to restore and view older files. 

With ChronoSync, you can not only copy data, you can manage it too. You can exclude files and folders, check the current sync status of files, even run trial synchronizations to see what will happen before it happens.

ChronoSync also lets you create bootable backups. With it you can create a complete copy of your hard drive and boot directly into the backup. Additionally ChronoSync gives you full access to the entire hard drive so any files can be copied. The app also features a modified "Sync Engine" logic to use less memory and scan files faster, resulting in speedier synchronizations in most cases.

ChronoSync sports templates that provide the ability to create Synchronizer and Container documents with customized settings. The Setup panel contains a Readiness status that displays any issues between the two Targets being synchronized. The Archive feature now supports file compression saving you disk space.

Then there's InterConneX, free for iOS, which creates file storage on your iOS device and allows the direct sharing and transfer of files between iOS devices, as well as sharing and transfer of files with your Mac running ChronoSync or ChronoAgent. With ChronoSync on a Mac you can automatically backup or synchronize files and folders to and from InterConneX.

There are lots more features of ChronoSync, but these are some of the highlights. If you want a fast, flexible tool for synching and back-ups, look no further. The latest version is 4.5.5 and requires Mac OS X 10.8 or later.

Also, Econ offers a companion product: ChronoAgent. The utility runs on a destination Mac (running OS X 10.8 or higher) and communicates directly with ChronoSync. Normally, when you synchronize or back up to another Mac you mount it using file sharing. However, you only have the same access to that Mac as the user you mount as. This means that other user accounts and system files are off limits.

ChronoAgent bypasses file sharing, giving you full access to the destination Mac and eliminating the need to mount via AFP, SMB or other protocols. It can even match Users and Groups of files between two different Macs giving you full preservation of file ownership and permissions.

ChronoAgent runs in the background as an invisible application and is controlled in the System Preferences of your Mac. ChronoAgent only communicates with ChronoSync, meaning you need to have ChronoSync in order to communicate with ChronoAgent. ChronoAgent for Mac is a separate purchase and sells for $14.99. You can get ChronoSync and ChronoAgent

Munster: Apple likely to fold VR into 'Made for iPhone' program within 2 years

AppleInsider - Mon, 2016-02-08 21:07
Following up on a recent flurry of Apple acquisitions and key hires from the augmented reality/virtual reality field, Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster believes the iPhone maker plans to pivot on iOS in a bid for the mixed reality space within the next two years.

Apple CEO Tim Cook Congrats Denver Broncos with Tweet

MacObserver - Mon, 2016-02-08 18:25

Apple CEO Tim Cook tweeted his congratulations to the Denver Broncos for winning Super Bowl 50. Mr. Cook did so with a pair of tweets from the game itself, including the one below and an earlier one from the field. Congrats @Millerlite40 Peyton Manning @Broncos Amazing season. pic.twitter.com/3RfQml832C - Tim Cook (@tim_cook) February 8, 2016

Firewatch Release on February 9th for Mac, Windows, Linux, PlayStation 4

MacObserver - Mon, 2016-02-08 18:15

Firewatch comes to Mac, Windows, Linux, and PlayStation 4 on Tuesday. The Mac version is via Steam, where it's available for a preorder discount of US$17.99 (regularly $19.99) now. According to the developers, "Firewatch is a mystery set in the Wyoming wilderness, where your only emotional lifeline is the person on the other end of a handheld radio." It's set in 1989, meaning no smartphones or even cellphones. The trailer looks great. Check it out.

Apple's Notes for Mac to support Evernote file imports in OS X 10.11.4

AppleInsider - Mon, 2016-02-08 18:04
Apple's Notes app, included as part of the upcoming OS X 10.11.4 El Capitan software update, has been confirmed to support Evernote .enex file format imports in what could be a move to convert users to the iCloud native format.

Intego Warns of Fake Flash Update that Installs Scareware

MacObserver - Mon, 2016-02-08 17:53

Security software company Intego is warning of a malware disguised as a (fake) Flash installer that actually installs scareware and other malware on your Mac. The malware isn't exploiting any security holes in OS X, but instead does a semi-credible job of looking like an Adobe Flash update to socially engineer users into permitting the installation.

AWT News Update: February 8, 2016

AppleWorld.Today - Mon, 2016-02-08 16:30

Fresh off of a Super Bowl 50 victory by the Denver Broncos, it's the AWT News Update from the suburbs of Denver, Colorado. Today's stories include:

  • A new tvOS beta allows users to dictate names and passwords using Siri dictation
  • Instagram app now allows multiple user accounts
  • Apple has filed a motion for a mistrial in that lawsuit that awarded $625 million to a patent troll

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Hi, I’m Steve Sande from Apple World Today, and this is the AWT News Update for February 8, 2016. Our sponsor this week is Winning WordPress, a powerful online resource for everyone who runs a WordPress site or is thinking about it. Check it out on the AWT website today, or click the link found in today’s show notes.

Apple today released the third beta version of tvOS 9.2 to developers, meaning that by Wednesday it should make it into the hands of those who are part of the Apple public beta program. One of the more interesting additions to the third beta is support for dictation. In countries where Siri is available, text entry onscreen can be done via dictation. Upon installing the beta OS, users are prompted to enable or disable dictation. Dictation will allow Apple TV users to dictate text and spell user names and password instead of typing them. When enabled, the tvOS search bar flips between a blank search field and an option to hold the Siri button for dictation. It’s quite a nice addition. Apple also released the third betas of OS X 10.11.4, iOS 9.3, and watchOS 2.2.

Photo sharing app Instagram today announced that users can log into its mobile app with multiple user accounts. This is quite useful for anyone who needs to manage more than one account for company social media, or just likes to have multiple accounts in order to flood the internet with photos. The feature has been slowly rolling out to users, so not everyone has access to it. Once it’s available to all users, accounts can be added via profile settings and switching between accounts is as simple as tapping the username at the top of the profile.

Remember the post on Apple World Today last week about patent troll VirnetX winning $625 million from Apple based on alleged patent infringements? Well, Apple has filed a motion for a mistrial in the case. VirnetX’s win came during a retrial after the company won $368 million back in 2012 and the appeals court said that damages had been calculated incorrectly. According to the Texas Lawyer website, VirnetX misrepresented what Apple’s witnesses said during closing statements, and arguments were presented that were outside of the realm of evidence shown in the case. If Apple is correct, then VirnetX’s legal team violated procedure and a mistrial would be warranted. This is the third time the case has been tried in Federal District Court of Eastern Texas, not counting appeals. The original damage verdict was tossed, resulting in a new ruling that led to the finding that improperly calculated damages, and then the third trial resulted in the new award and Apple’s motion. It should be noted that this particular federal court district is popular with patent trolls because patent suits can go from filing to trial in less than a year, and speedy litigation often favors plaintiffs. In addition, judges in the district don’t want to decide cases on summary judgement, often sending complex patent cases to juries to rule on. That raises the cost and risk for defendants.

I’ll be back tomorrow afternoon with another edition of the AWT News Update.

Apple makes its Swift benchmark suite open source

AppleWorld.Today - Mon, 2016-02-08 16:07

In a post on its Swift blog Apple says Swift’s benchmark suite is now open source. The uite contains source code for benchmarks, libraries, and utilities designed to help track Swift performance and catch performance regressions before they are committed, including:

  • 75 benchmarks covering a number of important Swift workloads;
  • Libraries providing commonly needed benchmarking functions;
  • A driver for running benchmarks and displaying performance metrics;
  • A utility for comparing benchmark metrics across Swift versions.

The Swift programming language itself went open source in December. It’s the brainchild of Chris Lattner, who is the senior director of Apple's Developer Tools Department. In 2010, he began taking ideas from Objective-C, Rust, Haskell, Ruby, Python, C#, CLU and other languages to create the new language. Swift was first unveiled at WWDC 2014.

The language is open source under the Apache license, which says that developers can use the software for any purpose and even distribute modified versions of Swift without paying royalties to Apple. It's hoped that developers will begin to use Swift for development outside of the Apple ecosystem

Apple open-sources Swift benchmarking suite

AppleInsider - Mon, 2016-02-08 15:51
Apple on Monday took its Swift benchmark suite open source, providing developers access to a wide-ranging set of tools designed to track project performance and catch bugs in code written in the company's fledgling programming language.

Infographic for Spotting Fake Apple Watches

MacObserver - Mon, 2016-02-08 15:30

Watch retailer Watches2U put together an infographic for spotting fake Apple Watches, which we've included below. It's a handy-dandy guide, especially for those who don't eat, breathe, and sleep Apple products. Check it out in the full story.

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